Pentagon Denies Request by Lawyers to Broadcast Guantanamo Trials to World

November 27, 2012

Brian Romanoff      Nov 27, 2012      Nor Cal Truth

A spokesman for Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has declined the request of multiple defense attorneys to “broadcast all open proceedings” of the upcoming trial of Khalid Sheikh Mohammad and four other men at Guantanamo.

The Defense lawyers reminded Panetta that the reputation of the US has been suffering substantially due to the worldwide perception that US officials are simply trying “to cover-up torture at Guantanamo and CIA black sites.”

The current approach to the trials are called “bare-minimum” by the defense counsel and if they are continued without any changes, including broadcasting the proceedings on air for the world to see, than, “it will loudly confirm the widely held perception that the United States is indeed trying to cover up their own wrongdoing.”

Currently, the open proceedings of the trial will be broadcast on CCTV to the public at one very little place of our very large country; Fort Meade, Maryland. Seven other locations have been selected for CCTV viewing of the trial, however these seven other sites will only be open to victim family members, survivors, first responders, their families and media.

Please read the letter below to be reminded that there are people in positions of power who care about the honesty and integrity of our collective future.

Unfortunately there are other people in higher positions that don’t.

MEMORANDUM FOR THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE

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No Justice: Statement of September 11th Advocates Regarding Guantanamo Bay Military Tribunals

May 5, 2012

source: Jon Gold    May 4, 2012

It would seem that the U.S. Government found itself in a conundrum when they allowed prisoners, like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM), to be tortured in secret prisons around the world.  Once tortured, any confession or testimony from KSM, or others, could not be deemed reliable.  Furthermore, the focus of the eventual proceedings would become a trial about the practice of torture, instead of being a trial about alleged terrorist crimes.  That would have been untenable for the U.S. Government, which wants to avoid any and all accountability for their own crimes of torture.

In order to bypass potential discussion of torture, the latest Chief Prosecutor for the Military Commissions, Brig. General Mark Martins, found a willing witness in Majid Khan, a fellow GITMO inmate to KSM.  Khan himself was not involved in the 9/11 plot.  He supposedly got his information from time spent behind bars at GITMO with KSM.  Kahn will be allowed to give this hearsay evidence against KSM in return for a reduced sentence.  However, Khan’s sentencing won’t take place for four years.  It seems the Prosecution is pinning their hopes and dreams on Khan’s upcoming performance.  None of this lends credibility to an already suspect system.

Additionally, with campaigning for the upcoming Presidential elections heating up, the timing of this latest attempt at justice for 9/11 is exploitive at best.

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Patty Casazza

Monica Gabrielle

Mindy Kleinberg

Lorie Van Auken


10 More Years in Afghanistan for US: 1 in 2 New US Graduates are Jobless or Underemployed

April 23, 2012

Brian Romanoff       Nor Cal Truth      Apr 23, 2012

In news that should have been, the US and Afghanistan have reached a new deal for the taxpayers of many countries, pledging at least 10 more years of “support.”

The actual text of the agreement has not been released, however the NY Times reports that the agreement will cover concepts such as “..economic development, institution building… and regional security.” The agreement was called “sweeping by design, with few details to bog down negotiators” by the New York Times. Few details and a sweeping design sound like something that passes 2nd grade drawing class, not geo-political planning and manipulation.

The sad reality of other current US news paints a clear picture of the upcoming situation for many: 1 of 2 new graduates are finding jobs that pay at least a living wage. 1 of 2. Half. Living Wage. The AP reports:

Broken down by occupation, young college graduates were heavily represented in jobs that require a high school diploma or less.

In the last year, they were more likely to be employed as waiters, waitresses, bartenders and food-service helpers than as engineers, physicists, chemists and mathematicians combined (100,000 versus 90,000). There were more working in office-related jobs such as receptionist or payroll clerk than in all computer professional jobs (163,000 versus 100,000). More also were employed as cashiers, retail clerks and customer representatives than engineers (125,000 versus 80,000).

According to government projections released last month, only three of the 30 occupations with the largest projected number of job openings by 2020 will require a bachelor’s degree or higher to fill the position — teachers, college professors and accountants. Most job openings are in professions such as retail sales, fast food and truck driving, jobs which aren’t easily replaced by computers.

Is this the new era that will be pursued by the representatives of the US? And what do The People say about this?

If this is how it is going to be, call me when this era is over: I might be out on this one.

 

 

 


Chris Hedges on Challenging the NDAA in Court

April 4, 2012

source: Russia Today    Apr 4, 2012

Last week the case against the National Defense Authorization Act was presented to a judge in New York. One of the plaintiffs in the case has decided to sue the Obama administration claiming that by simply doing his job he could be arrested and detained indefinitely due to the nature of his work, reporting. Chris Hedges, columnist for TruthDig, joins us to explain how his day in court went.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QsCiFnE14kA&feature=g-all-u&context=G2c54…


Launching the U.S. Terror War: the CIA, 9/11, Afghanistan, and Central Asia

March 18, 2012

by Peter Dale Cott   source: Global Research   Mar 18, 2012

On September 11, 2001, within hours of the murderous 9/11 attacks, Bush, Rumsfeld, and Cheney had committed America to what they later called the “War on Terror.” It should more properly, I believe, be called the “Terror War,” one in which terror has been directed repeatedly against civilians by all participants, both states and non-state actors.1 It should also be seen as part of a larger, indeed global, process in which terror has been used against civilians in interrelated campaigns by all major powers, including China in Xinjiang and Russia in Chechnya, as well as the United States.2 Terror war in its global context should perhaps be seen as the latest stage of the age-long secular spread of transurban civilization into areas of mostly rural resistance — areas where conventional forms of warfare, for either geographic or cultural reasons, prove inconclusive.

Terror War was formally declared by George W. Bush on the evening of September 11, 2001, with his statement to the American nation that “we will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them.”3 But the notion that Bush’s terror war was in pursuit of actual terrorists lost credibility in 2003, when it was applied to Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, a country known to have been targeted by terrorists but not to have harbored them.4 It lost still more credibility with the 2005 publication in Britain of the so-called Downing Street memo, in which the head of the British intelligence service MI6 reported after a visit to Washington in 2002 that “Bush wanted to remove Saddam Hussein, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.”5 False stories followed in due course linking Iraq to WMD, anthrax, and Niger yellowcake (uranium).

This essay will demonstrate that before 9/11 a small element inside the CIA’s Bin Laden Unit and related agencies, the so-called Alec Station Group, were also busy, “fixing” intelligence by suppressing it, in a way which, accidentally or deliberately, enabled the Terror War. They did so by withholding evidence from the FBI before 9/11 about two of the eventual alleged hijackers on 9/11, Khalid Al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi, thus ensuring that the FBI could not surveil the two men or their colleagues.

This failure to share was recognized in the 9/11 Commission Report, but treated as an accident that might not have occurred “if more resources had been applied.”6 This explanation, however, has since been refuted by 9/11 Commission Chairman Tom Kean. Asked recently by two filmmakers if the failure to deal appropriately with al-Mihdhar and al-Hazmi could have been a simple mistake, Kean replied:

Oh, it wasn’t careless oversight. It was purposeful. No question about that .… The conclusion that we came to was that in the DNA of these organizations was secrecy. And secrecy to the point of ya don’t share it with anybody.7

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Afghanistan: Ten Years of War

October 9, 2011

source: Corbett Report     Oct 9, 2011

October 7th marks the ten year anniversary of the commencement of NATO operations in Afghanistan. Although the impending illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003 was enough to drive millions of people worldwide into the streets in protest, there has never been the same widespread resistance to the Afghan war.

This war has been deemed the “right war” and given a broad measure of support from across the political spectrum because it is still linked in the popular imagination with the events of 9/11. Even a cursory interrogation of these assumptions, however, reveals the absurd nature of this pretext for what has been all along an illegal invasion and occupation of a sovereign nation.

On the evening of 9/11, the North Atlantic Council issued a statement offering the assistance of all 18 NATO member states to the United States, calling the attacks “without precedent in the modern era.”

The next day the Council met again, making the extraordinary decision to invoke Article 5 of the Washington Treaty for the first time in NATO’s history. The carefully worded statement contained the important stipulation that Article 5 would only apply if it could be determined that the attacks were directed from abroad, something that NATO Secretary General Robertson noted had not been determined.

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Veterans say Afghanistan & Iraq Wars not Worth it

October 7, 2011

As of today, the war in Afghanistan is 10 years old. It pains me that I have that reality to write about – we have so much work ahead of ourselves. If we don’t do anything it will soon be 20 years in Afghanistan, let’s not go there. Brian @ Nor Cal Truth

source: CNN  Oct 7, 2011

America’s veterans are proud of their military service, but in a new report published Wednesday, they expressed ambivalence about the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

In a new Pew Research Center report on war and sacrifice, half of post-9/11 veterans said the Afghanistan war has been worth fighting. Only 44% felt that way about Iraq, and one-third said both wars were worth the costs.

Some of those costs were outlined in the Pew study, which comes out as the United States marks the 10th anniversary Friday of the Afghanistan conflict, the longest-running war in the nation’s history.

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