12.5.06

Iran: Euro to replace dollar as oil currency

Iran: Euro to replace dollar as oil currency:

This is why bush and the crime family want to bomb iran!!! does anyone not know this yet????

Iran: Euro to replace dollar as oil currency


In July Iran will ditch the dollar in favour of the euro as the currency in which it will accept payments for its oil and natural gas exports, Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced Friday.

The switch, first mooted months ago, was expected but Ahmadinejad's decision comes just as Washington is stepping up pressure on other United Nations Security Council members to act against Tehran for flouting agreements taken with the UN's nuclear watchdog.

Ahmadinejad's announcement, made in Baku, Azerbaijan where the Iranian leader is attending a regional economics conference, appears aimed at weakening the United States' resolve to seek sanctions against Iran if it does not comply with the UN International Agency for Atomic Energy's demands.

Some observers beleive the Iranian move could deal a severe blow the the American currency as many central banks from oil importing nations could choose to stock up their currency reserves with euros rather than dollars

Judge to rule on dismissal of Masri torture case

Judge to rule on dismissal of Masri torture case

A federal judge said on Friday he will decide soon whether to dismiss a lawsuit against former CIA Director George Tenet by a German of Lebanese origin who says he was abducted and tortured by the U.S. spy agency.

A Bush administration lawyer told U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis at a hearing that moving forward with the case of Khaled el-Masri would risk national security by exposing state secrets about CIA activities vital to the U.S. war on terrorism.

'This case must be dismissed,' said assistant U.S. Attorney R. Joseph Sher, who argued that even a government denial of the allegations could jeopardize U.S. interests. 'There is no other way forward.'

Defendants in the case also include 20 unnamed CIA agents and three companies that Masri said owned the airplanes used to transport him between Europe and South Asia.

Masri, who was born in Kuwait, says he was abducted on December 31, 2001, in Macedonia. He said he was then drugged, beaten and flown by the CIA to Afghanistan, where he was held as a terrorism suspect until May 2004, when his captors dumped him in Albania. Tenet was CIA director at the time.

Ahmadinejad inspired by God in writing letter to Bush - Jannati - Irna

Ahmadinejad inspired by God in writing letter to Bush - Jannati - Irna:

Substitute Friday Prayers Leader of Tehran Ayatollah Ahamd Jannati said in his second sermon this week that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's letter to his US counterpart had been divinely inspired.

Addressing hundreds of worshipers at Tehran University, Jannati reiterated, 'The letter is spectacular, and when I say it is an inspiration from God, I really believe in it.'

The Friday preacher of Tehran added, 'This was a historically unprecedented move, save for the late Imam Khomeini's letter to (the former USSR President Mikhail) Gorbachev, which stunned everyone.' Describing Ahmadinejad's letter to Bush as 'astonishing and odd', Jannati said, 'I suggest everyone to read this letter. It should be read at schools and universities, and repeatedly broadcast from the country's radio and TV networks.'

The Secretary of the Guardians Council also proposed that the letter's text be included in text books, adding, 'The messages in that letter are welcomed by the world nations, and yet no one else would have dared to write such a letter to the US President.'

Jannati reiterated, 'Imam Khomeini (PBUH) said in his letter to Gorbachev that the problems with which (the former) Soviet Union was entangled would lead to disintegration of that country, and today we see that the West is on the verge of disintegration, since it is at the end of dead end road.'

Addressing the Americans, the Tehran Friday Prayers leader said, 'You keep telling lies, your actions are so self-contradictory, you claim to be Christians and the followers of Jesus Christ, you boast to much speaking of human rights and democracy, but your conduct in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other parts of the world show your real nature that is quite different with those claims.'

Referring to a point in Ahmadinejad's letter, he said, 'Iran believes in rule of logic, in acting moderately, and in rationalism,' adding, 'We are neither very powerful, nor after exerting our hegemony against anyone.'

He said that the other message of the letter was that Iran can clearly analyze the world affairs, while the Americans' analysis of them is wrong.

Jannati considered the Americans' main problem to be their 'irrational conduct', saying, 'When the president of a country like United States lacks a sound mind, instead of solving the problems, he worsens them.'

The Secretary of Guardians Council reiterated, 'Despite their big claims, the US power is declining, and that is a fact mentioned by the late Imam (PBUH) in his letter to Gorbachev.'

Oil for no one if Iran attacked

IRIB PERSIAN NEWS PAGE:

Visiting Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said here on Thursday in case of a military attack against Iran, no country in the world would have access to crude oil.

Chavez made the remark at a press conference, adding, 'as Iran's President Ahmadinejad has reiterated, if Tehran would come under attack, oil would get scarce for everyone.'

He also said that the American President George W. Bush should be put to trial at the International Court of Justice for having launched genocide in Iraq.

The Venezuelan president added, 'for all the horror it has created around the globe in the course of the past century, the United States' war machine should be dismantled, since under the current conditions it is a threat against the entire mankind, particularly against our children.'

Chavez added, 'the North American empire is the most cruel murderer regime that has ever come to power in world history and a serious threat for all nations.'

He believes the death of the United States had better taken place in the course of the 21st century, because 'otherwise the entire world would face the threat of annihilation.'

The revolutionary Latin American president concluded his remarks, arguing, 'although in terms of military power the United States ranks first in the world, but in the public opinion of the world nations it ranks rock bottom low, and many nations fell stronger in terms of logical reasoning than the United States.'

US must address Iran security concerns: IAEA

US must address Iran security concerns: IAEA:

'Iran is surrounded by countries that have nuclear weapons, Russia has nuclear weapons, Pakistan has nuclear weapons, Israel has nuclear weapons, Iraq has used chemical weapons against them. There is a sense of insecurity,' he said.

'When you talk about the Iranian issue, the only solution is a package that should inter alia include security issues.'

Editorials, from Right and Left, Hit Latest NSA Shocker

Editorials, from Right and Left, Hit Latest NSA Shocker:

Leading newspapers reacted swiftly to USA Today's Thursday bombshell confirming the long-rumored National Security Agency 'data mining' operation drawing on phone records of tens of millions of Americans. Web sites covered the reactions of the day in Washington, and now editorials are appearing.

War-Criminals Rice, Rumsfeld block access to secret detainees-ICRC

Rice, Rumsfeld block access to secret detainees:

The United States has again refused the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) access to terrorism suspects held in secret detention centers, the humanitarian agency said on Friday.

The overnight statement was issued after talks in Washington between ICRC President Jakob Kellenberger and senior officials, including Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley.

'Mr. Kellenberger deplored the fact that the U.S. authorities had not moved closer to granting the ICRC access to persons held in undisclosed locations,' the Geneva-based agency said.

Kellenberger said: 'No matter how legitimate the grounds for detention, there exists no right to conceal a person's whereabouts or to deny that he or she is being detained.'

The former senior Swiss diplomat said that the ICRC would continue to seek access to such people as a matter of priority.

The main objective of his annual visit this week was for the ICRC to be granted access to 'all persons held by the U.S. in the context of the fight against terrorism, an issue he first raised with the U.S. government over two years ago,' the agency said.

11.5.06

Bush sees Gulf Coast "whole again" -- eventually

Bush sees Gulf Coast "whole again" -- eventually:

it never ends....
President George W. Bush said on Thursday he envisioned the Gulf Coast 'whole again' even as he spoke in a stadium still under repair from Hurricane Katrina's fury more than eight months ago.

On his 10th visit to Mississippi since August 29's killer storm, Bush's motorcade passed snapped trees, shattered boardwalks and piers reduced to a jumble of matchsticks. It came to a stop not far from the crumpled skeleton of a hotel next to the Mississippi Coast Coliseum.

Speaking to about 660 graduates of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, which sustained more than $15 million in damage but reopened just 17 days after Katrina hit, Bush paid tribute to the students' resilience.

'Mississippi is coming back and it's going to be better than ever before,' he said, adding that the recovery will take time.

Bush has threatened to veto a $108.9 billion bill passed by the Senate that funds the Iraq and Afghanistan wars -- but also includes $28.9 billion for hurricane rebuilding -- because it is loaded with extra spending he did not seek.

Mission Improbable

Mission Improbable:

Like Rome, the administration made victory the foundation of authority. It was implied that a series of campaigns would be necessary to achieve millennial goals such as “democracy in the Middle East.” The situation called for active and constant presidential leadership. Going further, the entire management of the war would be the president’s alone: there would be no government of national unity, no national mobilization, and no conscription. Not only was the president acting as commander in chief, he had undergone a metamorphosis: his person now fully inhabited an imperial station.

Furthermore, the administration also transformed the war into a permanent dispensation for imperial authority. The “long war” was designed to take normal politics and normal expectations off the table. By accepting the reality of the long war, moreover, Americans were encouraged to submit to a working imperial constitution. In practice this meant widespread expansion of executive powers at home as well as abroad.

But now “his own” closest retainers have deserted him, and even the military is no longer ton idion. And so, according to ancient story, the emperor is increasingly isolated, if not quite alone.

Our very strategy now founders because it was vested entirely in the cockpit of one man’s vision. So what is next? Where do we go from here? What lessons can we draw from the past five years?

NSA has massive database of Americans' phone calls

USATODAY.com - NSA has massive database of Americans' phone calls:

SURPRISE!!!
The National Security Agency has been secretly collecting the phone call records of tens of millions of Americans, using data provided by AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth, people with direct knowledge of the arrangement told USA TODAY.

The NSA program reaches into homes and businesses across the nation by amassing information about the calls of ordinary Americans — most of whom aren't suspected of any crime. This program does not involve the NSA listening to or recording conversations. But the spy agency is using the data to analyze calling patterns in an effort to detect terrorist activity, sources said in separate interviews.

Amid Strife, Abramoff Had Pal at White House

Amid Strife, Abramoff Had Pal at White House - Los Angeles Times:

Lobbyist Jack Abramoff engaged in regular contact with a high-ranking White House official, asking for favors and pouring out his heart as lawmakers and the media began exposing details of his business dealings, according to copies of e-mails released Wednesday by the White House.

At one point, when news reports began detailing the lobbyist's role in a burgeoning ethics scandal that has threatened to envelop Republican lawmakers, the White House aide offered to assist Abramoff with 'damage control.'

The e-mails, which include dozens of communications during 2004, reveal a casual, jocular relationship between Abramoff and David H. Safavian, who was chief of federal procurement policy at the White House budget office until he was charged last year with lying in connection with a federal investigation of Abramoff.

10.5.06

With Access Denied, Justice Department Drops Spying Investigation

With Access Denied, Justice Department Drops Spying Investigation - New York Times:

well, it is about time to wrap it up and just wait for the 'end of time' like the neocons...
An investigation by the Justice Department ethics office into the conduct of department lawyers who approved the National Security Agency's domestic surveillance program has been closed because investigators were denied security clearances, according to a letter sent to Congress on Wednesday.

The head of the department's Office of Professional Responsibility, H. Marshall Jarrett, wrote in the letter to Representative Maurice D. Hinchey, Democrat of New York, that 'we have been unable to make meaningful progress in our investigation because O.P.R. has been denied security clearances for access to information about the N.S.A. program.'

Mr. Jarrett said his office had requested clearances since January, when it began an investigation, and was told on Tuesday that they had been denied. 'Without these clearances, we cannot investigate this matter and therefore have closed our investigation,' the letter said.

Mr. Hinchey said the denial of clearances was 'hard to believe' and compounded what he called a violation of the law by the program itself, which eavesdrops without court warrants on people in the United States suspected of ties to Al Qaeda.

Brian Roehrkasse, a Justice Department spokesman, said that the N.S.A. program was 'highly classified and exceptionally sensitive' and that 'only those involved in national security with a specific need to know are provided details about this classified program.' He said the legality of the eavesdropping program had been reviewed by other Justice Department offices and by the N.S.A. inspector general.

9.5.06

Katherine Harris thrown away as a two-bit whore by the Republicans

WSJ.com - Katherine Harris Battles Old Friends For Florida's Keys:

maybe now that she knows she was just used in 2000, perhaps she will tell the truth?
Katherine Harris, overseer of the Florida recount that tipped the presidency to George W. Bush, is gunning for a U.S. Senate seat. But instead of gratefully supporting her, the Republican establishment just wishes she'd go away.

Democrats are having a field day with the candidate's entanglement in a Washington lobbying scandal as well as her uneven political touch -- she once made a speech about a terrorist plot that didn't exist. She's badly trailing Democrat incumbent Bill Nelson in the polls. A slew of staffers have quit her campaign, frustrated by her management style and her tendency to ignore their advice, in particular the suggestion that she forget the whole thing.

Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, the president's brother, told reporters at a recent press briefing that he warned Ms. Harris about becoming a distraction, given the high degree of animus that still surrounds her. 'The campaign can't be about her,' Gov. Bush said. 'I gave her that exact advice. Since then, it's gotten worse.'

Last week, Gov. Bush mentioned that some were encouraging state House Speaker Allan Bense to run for the Republican nomination. The filing deadline is Friday. 'He would be a great United States senator,' Gov. Bush added.

Two days ago, the governor was at his most blunt: 'I just don't think she can win,' he said.

'I respectfully disagree,' responds Ms. Harris, 49 years old, who is currently a member of the U.S. House of Representatives. 'Clearly at the beginning of the year he said I could win. Last month he said we could turn it around, and we've done that.'

Le Monde.fr : La lettre de Mahmoud Ahmadinejad - George W. Bush


Le Monde.fr : La lettre de Mahmoud Ahmadinejad:

Mr George Bush, President of the United States of America

For sometime now I have been thinking, how one can justify the undeniable contradictions that exist in the international arena -- which are being constantly debated, specially in political forums and amongst university students. Many questions remain unanswered. These have prompted me to discuss some of the contradictions and questions, in the hopes that it might bring about an opportunity to redress them.

Can one be a follower of Jesus Christ (PBUH), the great Messenger of God, Feel obliged to respect human rights, Present liberalism as a civilization model, Announce one's opposition to the proliferation of nuclear weapons and WMDs, Make War and Terror his slogan, And finally, Work towards the establishment of a unified international community – a community which Christ and the virtuous of the Earth will one day govern, But at the same time, Have countries attacked; The lives, reputations and possessions of people destroyed and on the slight chance of the … of a … criminals in a village city, or convoy for example the entire village, city or convey set ablaze. Or because of the possibility of the existence of WMDs in one country, it is occupied, around one hundred thousand people killed, its water sources, agriculture and industry destroyed, close to 180,000 foreign troops put on the ground, sanctity of private homes of citizens broken, and the country pushed back perhaps fifty years. At what price? Hundreds of billions of dollars spent from the treasury of one country and certain other countries and tens of thousands of young men and women – as occupation troops – put in harms way, taken away from family and love ones, their hands stained with the blood of others, subjected to so much psychological pressure that everyday some commit suicide ant those returning home suffer depression, become sickly and grapple with all sorts of aliments; while some are killed and their bodies handed of their families.On the pretext of the existence of WMDs, this great tragedy came to engulf both the peoples of the occupied and the occupying country. Later it was revealed that no WMDs existed to begin with.

Of course Saddam was a murderous dictator. But the war was not waged to topple him, the announced goal of the war was to find and destroy weapons of mass destruction. He was toppled along the way towards another goal, nevertheless the people of the region are happy about it. I point out that throughout the many years of the … war on Iran Saddam was supported by the West.

Mr President, You might know that I am a teacher. My students ask me how can theses actions be reconciled with the values outlined at the beginning of this letter and duty to the tradition of Jesus Christ (PBUH), the Messenger of peace and forgiveness.

There are prisoners in Guantanamo Bay that have not been tried, have no legal representation, their families cannot see them and are obviously kept in a strange land outside their own country. There is no international monitoring of their conditions and fate. No one knows whether they are prisoners, POWs, accused or criminals. European investigators have confirmed the existence of secret prisons in Europe too. I could not correlate the abduction of a person, and him or her being kept in secret prisons, with the provisions of any judicial system. For that matter, I fail to understand how such actions correspond to the values outlined in the beginning of this letter, i.e. the teachings of Jesus Christ (PBUH), human rights and liberal values.

Young people, university students and ordinary people have many questions about the phenomenon of Israel. I am sure you are familiar with some of them. Throughout history many countries have been occupied, but I think the establishment of a new country with a new people, is a new phenomenon that is exclusive to our times.Students are saying that sixty years ago such a country did no exist. The show old documents and globes and say try as we have, we have not been able to find a country named Israel.

I tell them to study the history of WWI and II. One of my students told me that during WWII, which more than tens of millions of people perished in, news about the war, was quickly disseminated by the warring parties. Each touted their victories and the most recent battlefront defeat of the other party. After the war, they claimed that six million Jews had been killed. Six million people that were surely related to at least two million families.

Again let us assume that these events are true. Does that logically translate into the establishment of the state of Israel in the Middle East or support for such a state? How can this phenomenon be rationalised or explained?

Mr President, I am sure you know how – and at what cost – Israel was established : Many thousands were killed in the process.

Millions of indigenous people were made refugees.

Hundred of thousands of hectares of farmland, olive plantations, towns and villages were destroyed. This tragedy is not exclusive to the time of establishment; unfortunately it has been ongoing for sixty years now.

A regime has been established which does not show mercy even to kids, destroys houses while the occupants are still in them, announces beforehand its list and plans to assassinate Palestinian figures and keeps thousands of Palestinians in prison. Such a phenomenon is unique – or at the very least extremely rare – in recent memory.

Another big question asked by people is why is this regime being supported? Is support for this regime in line with the teachings of Jesus Christ (PBUH) or Moses (PBUH) or liberal values? Or are we to understand that allowing the original inhabitants of these lands – inside and outside Palestine – whether they are Christian, Muslim or Jew, to determine their fate, runs contrary to principles of democracy, human rights and the teachings of prophets? If not, why is there so much opposition to a referendum?

The newly elected Palestinian administration recently took office. All independent observes have confirmed that this government represents the electorate. Unbelievingly, they have put the elected government under pressure and have advised it to recognise the Israeli regime, abandon the struggle and follow the programs of the previous government.

If the current Palestinian government had run on the above platform, would the Palestinian people have voted for it? Again, can such position taken in opposition to the Palestinian government be reconciled with the values outlined earlier? The people are also saying why are all UNSC resolutions in condemnation of Israel vetoed?

Mr President, As you are well aware, I live amongst the people and am in constant contact with them --many people from around the Middle East manage to contact me as well. They dot not have faith in these dubious policies either. There is evidence that the people of the region are becoming increasingly angry with such policies.

It is not my intention to pose to many questions, but I need to refer to other points as well.

Why is it that any technological and scientific achievement reached in the Middle East regions is translated into and portrayed as a threat to the Zionist regime? Is not scientific R&D one of the basic rights of nations.

You are familiar with history. Aside from the Middle Ages, in what other point in history has scientific and technical progress been a crime? Can the possibility of scientific achievements being utilised for military purposes be reason enough to oppose science and technology altogether? If such a supposition is true, then all scientific disciplines, including physics, chemistry, mathematics, medicine, engineering, etc. must be opposed.

Lies were told in the Iraqi matter. What was the result? I have no doubt that telling lies is reprehensible in any culture, and you do not like to be lied to.

Mr President, Don't Latin Americans have the right to ask, why their elected governments are being opposed and coup leaders supported? Or, why must they constantly be threatened and live in fear?

The people of Africa are hardworking, creative and talented. They can play an important and valuable role in providing for the needs of humanity and contribute to its material and spiritual progress. Poverty and hardship in large parts of Africa are preventing this from happening. Don't they have the right to ask why their enormous wealth – including minerals – is being looted, despite the fact that they need it more than others?

Again, do such actions correspond to the teachings of Christ and the tenets of human rights?

The brave and faithful people of Iran too have many questions and grievances, including : the coup d'etat of 1953 and the subsequent toppling of the legal government of the day, opposition to the Islamic revolution, transformation of an Embassy into a headquarters supporting, the activities of those opposing the Islamic Republic (many thousands of pages of documents corroborates this claim), support for Saddam in the war waged against Iran, the shooting down of the Iranian passenger plane, freezing the assets of the Iranian nation, increasing threats, anger and displeasure vis-à-vis the scientific and nuclear progress of the Iranian nation (just when all Iranians are jubilant and collaborating their country's progress), and many other grievances that I will not refer to in this letter.

Mr President, September Eleven was a horrendous incident. The killing of innocents is deplorable and appalling in any part of the world. Our government immediately declared its disgust with the perpetrators and offered its condolences to the bereaved and expressed its sympathies.

All governments have a duty to protect the lives, property and good standing of their citizens. Reportedly your government employs extensive security, protection and intelligence systems – and even hunts its opponents abroad. September eleven was not a simple operation. Could it be planned and executed without coordination with intelligence and security services – or their extensive infiltration? Of course this is just an educated guess. Why have the various aspects of the attacks been kept secret? Why are we not told who botched their responsibilities? And, why aren't those responsible and the guilty parties identified and put on trial?

All governments have a duty to provide security and peace of mind for their citizens. For some years now, the people of your country and neighbours of world trouble spots do not have peace of mind. After 9.11, instead of healing and tending to the emotional wounds of the survivors and the American people – who had been immensely traumatised by the attacks – some Western media only intensified the climates of fear and insecurity – some constantly talked about the possibility of new terror attacks and kept the people in fear. Is that service to the American people? Is it possible to calculate the damages incurred from fear and panic?

American citizen lived in constant fear of fresh attacks that could come at any moment and in any place. They felt insecure in the streets, in their place of work and at home. Who would be happy with this situation? Why was the media, instead of conveying a feeling of security and providing peace of mind, giving rise to a feeling of insecurity?

Some believe that the hype paved the way – and was the justification – for an attack on Afghanistan. Again I need to refer to the role of media. In media charters, correct dissemination of information and honest reporting of a story are established tenets. I express my deep regret about the disregard shown by certain Western media for these principles. The main pretext for an attack on Iraq was the existence of WMDs. This was repeated incessantly – for the public to, finally, believe – and the ground set for an attack on Iraq.

Will the truth not be lost in a contrive and deceptive climate? Again, if the truth is allowed to be lost, how can that be reconciled with the earlier mentioned values? Is the truth known to the Almighty lost as well?

Mr President, In countries around the world, citizens provide for the expenses of governments so that their governments in turn are able to serve them. The question here is what has the hundreds of billions of dollars, spent every year to pay for the Iraqi campaign, produced for the citizens? As your Excellency is aware, in some states of your country, people are living in poverty. Many thousands are homeless and unemployment is a huge problem. Of course these problems exist – to a larger or lesser extent – in other countries as well. With these conditions in mind, can the gargantuan expenses of the campaign – paid from the public treasury – be explained and be consistent with the aforementioned principles?

What has been said, are some of the grievances of the people around the world, in our region and in your country. But my main contention – which I am hoping you will agree to some of it – is : Those in power have specific time in office, and do not rule indefinitely, but their names will be recorded in history and will be constantly judged in the immediate and distant futures.

The people will scrutinize our presidencies.

Did we manage to bring peace, security and prosperity for the people or insecurity and unemployment? Did we intend to establish justice, or just supported especial interest groups, and by forcing many people to live in poverty and hardship, made a few people rich and powerful – thus trading the approval of the people and the Almighty with theirs'? Did we defend the rights of the underprivileged or ignore them? Did we defend the rights of all people around the world or imposed wars on them, interfered illegally in their affairs, established hellish prisons and incarcerated some of them? Did we bring the world peace and security or raised the specter of intimidation and threats? Did we tell the truth to our nation and others around the world or presented an inverted version of it? Were we on the side of people or the occupiers and oppressors? Did our administration set out to promote rational behaviour, logic, ethics, peace, fulfilling obligations, justice, service to the people, prosperity, progress and respect for human dignity or the force of guns. Intimidation, insecurity, disregard for the people, delaying the progress and excellence of other nations, and trample on people's rights? And finally, they will judge us on whether we remained true to our oath of office – to serve the people, which is our main task, and the traditions of the prophets – or not?

Mr President, How much longer can the world tolerate this situation? Where will this trend lead the world to? How long must the people of the world pay for the incorrect decisions of some rulers? How much longer will the specter of insecurity – raised from the stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction – hunt the people of the world? How much longer will the blood of the innocent men, women and children be spilled on the streets, and people's houses destroyed over their heads? Are you pleased with the current condition of the world? Do you think present policies can continue?

If billions of dollars spent on security, military campaigns and troop movement were instead spent on investment and assistance for poor countries, promotion of health, combating different diseases, education and improvement of mental and physical fitness, assistance to the victims of natural disasters, creation of employment opportunities and production, development projects and poverty alleviation, establishment of peace, mediation between disputing states and distinguishing the flames of racial, ethnic and other conflicts were would the world be today? Would not your government, and people be justifiably proud? Would not your administration's political and economic standing have been stronger? And I am most sorry to say, would there have been an ever increasing global hatred of the American governments?

Mr President, it is not my intention to distress anyone.

If prophet Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Ishmael, Joseph or Jesus Christ (PBUH) were with us today, how would they have judged such behaviour? Will we be given a role to play in the promised world, where justice will become universal and Jesus Christ (PBUH) will be present? Will they even accept us?

My basic question is this : Is there no better way to interact with the rest of the world? Today there are hundreds of millions of Christians, hundreds of millions of Moslems and millions of people who follow the teachings of Moses (PBUH). All divine religions share and respect on word and that is monotheism or belief in a single God and no other in the world.

The holy Koran stresses this common word and calls on an followers of divine religions and says : [3.64] Say : O followers of the Book! Come to an equitable proposition between us and you that we shall not serve any but Allah and (that) we shall not associate aught. With Him and (that) some of us shall not take others for lords besides Allah, but if they turn back, then say : Bear witness that we are Muslims. (The Family of Imran).

Mr President, According to divine verses, we have all been called upon to worship one God and follow the teachings of divine prophets. To worship a God which is above all powers in the world and can do all He pleases. The Lord which knows that which is hidden and visible, the past and the future, knows what goes on in the Hearts of His servants and records their deeds. The Lord who is the possessor of the heavens and the earth and all universe is His court planning for the universe is done by His hands, and gives His servants the glad tidings of mercy and forgiveness of sins . He is the companion of the oppressed and the enemy of oppressors . He is the Compassionate, the Merciful . He is the recourse of the faithful and guides them towards the light from darkness . He is witness to the actions of His servants , He calls on servants to be faithful and do good deeds, and asks them to stay on the path of righteousness and remain steadfast . Calls on servants to heed His prophets and He is a witness to their deeds. A bad ending belongs only to those who have chosen the life of this world and disobey Him and oppress His servants . And A good and eternal paradise belong to those servants who fear His majesty and do not follow their lascivious selves.

We believe a return to the teachings of the divine prophets is the only road leading to salvations. I have been told that Your Excellency follows the teachings of Jesus (PBUH), and believes in the divine promise of the rule of the righteous on Earth.

We also believe that Jesus Christ (PBUH) was one of the great prophets of the Almighty. He has been repeatedly praised in the Koran. Jesus (PBUH) has been quoted in Koran as well; [19,36] And surely Allah is my Lord and your Lord, therefore serves Him; this is the right path, Marium.

Service to and obedience of the Almighty is the credo of all divine messengers.

The God of all people in Europe, Asia, Africa, America, the Pacific and the rest of the world is one. He is the Almighty who wants to guide and give dignity to all His servants. He has given greatness to Humans.

We again read in the Holy Book : The Almighty God sent His prophets with miracles and clear signs to guide the people and show them divine signs and purity them from sins and pollutions. And He sent the Book and the balance so that the people display justice and avoid the rebellious.

All of the above verses can be seen, one way or the other, in the Good Book as well.

Divine prophets have promised : The day will come when all humans will congregate before the court of the Almighty, so that their deeds are examined. The good will be directed towards Haven and evildoers will meet divine retribution. I trust both of us believe in such a day, but it will not be easy to calculate the actions of rulers, because we must be answerable to our nations and all others whose lives have been directly or indirectly effected by our actions.

All prophets, speak of peace and tranquillity for man – based on monotheism, justice and respect for human dignity.

Do you not think that if all of us come to believe in and abide by these principles, that is, monotheism, worship of God, justice, respect for the dignity of man, belief in the Last Day, we can overcome the present problems of the world – that are the result of disobedience to the Almighty and the teachings of prophets – and improve our performance?

Do you not think that belief in these principles promotes and guarantees peace, friendship and justice?

Do you not think that the aforementioned written or unwritten principles are universally respected?

Will you not accept this invitation? That is, a genuine return to the teachings of prophets, to monotheism and justice, to preserve human dignity and obedience to the Almighty and His prophets?

Mr President, History tells us that repressive and cruel governments do not survive. God has entrusted The fate of man to them. The Almighty has not left the universe and humanity to their own devices. Many things have happened contrary to the wishes and plans of governments. These tell us that there is a higher power at work and all events are determined by Him.

Can one deny the signs of change in the world today? Is this situation of the world today comparable to that of ten years ago? Changes happen fast and come at a furious pace.

The people of the world are not happy with the status quo and pay little heed to the promises and comments made by a number of influential world leaders. Many people around the wolrd feel insecure and oppose the spreading of insecurity and war and do not approve of and accept dubious policies.

The people are protesting the increasing gap between the haves and the have-nots and the rich and poor countries.

The people are disgusted with increasing corruption.

The people of many countries are angry about the attacks on their cultural foundations and the disintegration of families. They are equally dismayed with the fading of care and compassion. The people of the world have no faith in international organisations, because their rights are not advocated by these organisations. Liberalism and Western style democracy have not been able to help realize the ideals of humanity. Today these two concepts have failed. Those with insight can already hear the sounds of the shattering and fall of the ideology and thoughts of the liberal democratic systems.

We increasingly see that people around the world are flocking towards a main focal point – that is the Almighty God. Undoubtedly through faith in God and the teachings of the prophets, the people will conquer their problems. My question for you is : Do you not want to join them?

Mr President, Whether we like it or not, the world is gravitating towards faith in the Almighty and justice and the will of God will prevail over all things.


Vasalam Ala Man Ataba'al hoda
Mahmood Ahmadi-Najad President of the Islamic Republic of Iran

Human Rights First | Us Law&Security | Committee Against Torture Diary | May 9, 2006

Human Rights First | Us Law&Security | Committee Against Torture Diary | May 9, 2006:

Today was the United States’ second and final appearance before the Committee against Torture. As I mentioned in my earlier blog entries, the United States was represented by a very large – 26-member – delegation which included representatives from the Department of Justice, Department of State, Homeland Security and Department of Defense. The United States also submitted a very voluminous (185-page) supplemental report purporting to answer specific questions raised by the Committee members in response to the United States’ Second Periodic report. This suggests a return from the brink of international disengagement. At the same time, however, the United States did not move away from its most criticized positions. For example, despite some pointed challenges from members of the Committee, the United States continued to maintain that the law of war applies to U.S. conflict against al Qaeda (but not any other terrorist group) world-wide, that human rights rules do not apply to situations of armed conflict or to the conduct of U.S. officials beyond U.S. borders (even in peacetime), and that secret detention and extraordinary rendition are not prohibited practices. The U.S. also continued to insist that abuses of detainees in U.S. custody are aberrations rather than manifestations of policy and are thoroughly investigated and punished; the delegation did admit, however, that there were some failures in leadership.

...

Another frank but disquieting admission by the United States came in response to a question about the future of Guantánamo. Bellinger noted the President’s assertion that Guantánamo detention facilities should not stay open indefinitely. However, he stated that alternatives were lacking and suggested that the detainees cannot be prosecuted either because they were not U.S. nationals (which is simply untrue), or because they did not plot or commit specific crimes against the United States. This was a startling statement and the first time I heard a government official say that we need to hold people without charges because they have not committed any crimes!

8.5.06

Is US Provoking Civil War in Iraq?

Palestine Chronicle - Robert Fisk: Is US Provoking Civil War in Iraq?

yes...
The Americans, my interlocutor suspected, are trying to provoke an Iraqi civil war so that Sunni Muslim insurgents spend their energies killing their Shia co-religionists rather than soldiers of the Western occupation forces. 'I swear to you that we have very good information,' my source says, finger stabbing the air in front of him. 'One young Iraqi man told us that he was trained by the Americans as a policeman in Baghdad and he spent 70 per cent of his time learning to drive and 30 per cent in weapons training. They said to him: 'Come back in a week.' When he went back, they gave him a mobile phone and told him to drive into a crowded area near a mosque and phone them. He waited in the car but couldn't get the right mobile signal. So he got out of the car to where he received a better signal. Then his car blew up.'

Impossible, I think to myself. But then I remember how many times Iraqis in Baghdad have told me similar stories. These reports are believed even if they seem unbelievable. And I know where much of the Syrian information is gleaned: from the tens of thousands of Shia Muslim pilgrims who come to pray at the Sayda Zeinab mosque outside Damascus. These men and women come from the slums of Baghdad, Hillah and Iskandariyah as well as the cities of Najaf and Basra. Sunnis from Fallujah and Ramadi also visit Damascus to see friends and relatives and talk freely of American tactics in Iraq.

'There was another man, trained by the Americans for the police. He too was given a mobile and told to drive to an area where there was a crowd - maybe a protest - and to call them and tell them what was happening. Again, his new mobile was not working. So he went to a landline phone and called the Americans and told them: 'Here I am, in the place you sent me and I can tell you what's happening here.' And at that moment there was a big explosion in his car.'

Republican Senate is attempting to take health care away from 85 million people

Statement of Senator Dodd on Families USA Report | U.S. Senator Christopher J. Dodd:

This is truly despicable
While 45 million Americans are uninsured, and the cost of care continues to rise at a staggering rate, President Bush and Republicans in Congress are pushing legislation that, as today’s report shows, will eliminate critical health benefits for 85 million Americans – benefits such as diabetes care, cancer screening, care for newborns and children, and mental health.

Iraq’s Shias turning against the Americans -

Iraq’s Shias turning against the Americans -:

But now this welcoming attitude has changed. The crimes committed by U.S. occupation forces and the Shia involvement in the Iraqi political process made the Shias realize that they fell victims to another brutal and merciless power.

...

'There is an anger,' said Jaffar Muhammad Asadi, spokesman for Ayatollah Muhammad Taqi Modaressi, a senior Shia cleric. 'You can hear it in the slogans at Friday prayers: 'Death to America’. They're saying: 'The Americans won't leave except by the funerals of their sons.'

Any one can sense this Shia fury in the holy cities of Najaf and Karbala, located deep in the Shia heartland of southern Iraq which houses some of the most magnificent and sacred Shia shrines. 'The American ambassador is the gate through which terrorism enters Iraq,' says a banner hanged on the fence surrounding the shrines of Imam Hussein and Imam Abbas in Karbala. Another song could be heard in the streets saying: 'If the occupiers come at us, we will plant a bomb underneath them.'

...

“U.S. troops are committing dozens of crimes on a daily basis. They torture and arrest randomly," Samir Adil, an Iraqi political editor said. "There are 27,000 prisoners under U.S. occupation and most of them did not do anything," he added.

Human Rights First | Us Law & Security | Committee Against Torture Diary | May 6, 2006

Human Rights First | Us Law & Security | Committee Against Torture Diary | May 6, 2006:

"The U.S. delegation then launched into a response to each of the 59 issues that the Committee put to the U.S., covering both domestic and international issues. The members of the Committee followed up with questions indicating skepticism of several claims made by the U.S.:

CLAIM: The U.S. does not send people to third countries where they may be at real risk of torture.

FACT: Several cases of such transfers (also known as “extraordinary renditions”) by or with the involvement of the United States are well-documented, dozens more have been alleged, and the use of Europe’s airspace for “extraordinary renditions” by the United States is being investigated by several bodies of the European Union.

CLAIM: Victims’ rights to redress for acts of torture are respected.

FACT: The Detainee Treatment Act purports to prohibit Guantanamo detainees from using any U.S. court to complain about abuse.

CLAIM: Abuses are properly investigated and perpetrators are held accountable.

FACT: A recent report by Human Rights First analyzed deaths in U.S. custody and identified nearly 100, a third of which are suspected or confirmed homicides under the U.S. military’s own definitions. Only 12 deaths resulted in any kind of punishment and the highest punishment for death as a result of torture was 5 months in prison. Another study looked at all types of alleged abuses and found that more than 600 U.S. personnel have been implicated in more than 330 cases of abuse, torture or killings of over 460 detainees. Only 40 people received prison sentences and only 10 of these received sentences of over 1 year. To date, none of the commanders have been held responsible for the actions of their subordinates.

CLAIM: The U.S. does not authorize interrogation techniques in violation of the Torture Convention.

FACT: Just one of several examples: the U.S. has consistently declined to admit that waterboarding is prohibited – waterboarding is frequently described as “mock drowning,” but the only thing “mock” about it is that the person inflicting it is supposed to stop before the victim is suffocated.

CLAIM: The U.S. accepts the absolute prohibition against torture as defined in the Torture Convention.

FACT: The U.S. interprets the term “torture” more narrowly than the definition used in the treaty. The U.S. also maintains that it has no obligation under the treaty to refrain from engaging in torture overseas or from transferring individuals to countries where they may be tortured, as long as such transfer originates outside the U.S."

7.5.06

UK Attorney General calls for Guantanamo to close

The Observer | Politics | Attorney General calls for Guantanamo to close:

'There are certain principles on which there can be no compromise,' Goldsmith will say. 'Fair trial is one of those - which is the reason we in the UK were unable to accept that the US military tribunals proposed for those detained at Guantanamo Bay offered sufficient guarantees of a fair trial in accordance with international standards.'

Although privately some senior ministers believe Guantanamo should be closed down, no one has so far condemned the camp in such open and trenchant terms. To date, the strongest criticism of the camp has come from Peter Hain, the Northern Ireland minister, who said on Newsnight in February that it was his personal belief that the camp should close, while the Prime Minister said only that it is an 'anomaly' that will have to end one day

...

The former Law Lord, Lord Steyn, now chairman of the human rights group, Justice, said last month that 'while our government condones Guantánamo Bay the world is perplexed about our approach to the rule of law.'

Steyn made it clear that if the British government were to criticise Guantánamo it would have significant consequences. 'You may ask: how will it help in regard to the continuing outrage at Guantánamo Bay for our government now to condemn it?' Steyn said. 'The answer is that it would at last be a powerful signal to the world that Britain supports the international rule of law.'