Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Obama's Freedom Fractal

Not only are Pakistanis free to lose their friends from U.S. drone fired missiles, they're free to lose their life while attending the funeral. BBC reported:

At least 43 people have died in missile strikes by a US drone aircraft in a militant stronghold of Pakistan, a Taliban spokesman has told the BBC. The people killed in South Waziristan had been attending the funeral of a militant commander who had been killed in an earlier strike.

Other reports cite as least 60 deaths. President Obama continues Bush's practice of summary execution.

There have been more than 35 US strikes since last August - killing over 340 people - and most have landed in the North and South Waziristan tribal regions.
More allegations of prisoner abuse arose from the U.S. prison at Bagram in Afghanistan. They came after Congress banned release of prisoner abuse photos. That should stem efforts to set up museums chronicling the horror. No rights means no rights. That includes the right to memorialize.

The Obama pattern of soaring rhetoric and Bush like implementation repeats itself. It's most disturbing for those expecting change.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Belligerence Wins in Middle East

The Benjamin Netanyahu-Mahmoud Ahmadinejad train wreck remains firmly on track. Israel's Prime Minister offered a peace "on our terms" speech, the day after Persians voted in droves to change the trajectory of violence.

There are accusations of voter fraud. Did Iran use voter caging or a "man in the middle" computer system?

The Government Industrial Monstrosity, Eisenhower's MIC on steroids, must be very pleased. There's ammunition and war implements to hawk. Meanwhile, people suffer.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Israeli Hard Ball

In response to President Obama's Middle East policies, Israeli Minister-without-Portfolio Yossi Peled proposed his country sanction the US. The Jerusalem Post reported:

The minister suggests reconsidering military and civilian purchases from the US, selling sensitive equipment that Washington opposes distributing internationally, and allowing other countries that compete with the US to get involved with the peace process and be given a foothold for their military forces and intelligence agencies.

Peled said that shifting military acquisition to America's competition would make Israel less dependent on the US. For instance, he suggested buying planes from the France-based Airbus firm instead of the American Boeing.

In what may be his most controversial suggestion, Peled recommends intervening in American congressional races to weaken Obama and asking American Jewish donors not to contribute to Democratic congressional candidates. He predicted that this would result in Democratic candidates pressuring Obama to become more pro-Israel.

Peled called for the formation of a new body intended to influence American public opinion. The groups he suggests courting include Hispanic Americans and Labor unions in industries that benefit from Israeli military acquisitions.

If this is how Israel treats its best friend, I'd hate to see how it abuses enemies. When your only tool is a hammer, everything looks like a nail? Can the U.S. not give Obama's promised $2.77 billion in military aid?

Israel's Nine Year Window for Peace with Arab Neighbors

Egypt and Saudi Arabia encouraged President Obama to put a two year window on peace in the Middle East. The Arab League Peace plan was introduced in 2002. By 2011, Israel will have had nine years to reach peace in its neighborhood.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Israel #1 in Per Capita Defense Spending

Israel spends $2,300 per person on defense. Its defense industry is a major supplier to world war making. Jerusalem Post reported:

The US is by far the largest overall defense spender, with expenses running to some $607 billion, 41.5 percent of the $1.46 trillion spent on defense needs worldwide in 2008.

The U.S. supplies $2.7 billion in military aid to Israel annually. That's over 15% of Israel's military expenditures of $16.2 billion. The linkages can be seen in defense products:

The United States exercises a de facto veto over such sales because many Israeli systems incorporate U.S. technology and also because of the exceedingly close strategic relations between the United States and Israel. Several years ago, Israel had to call off a huge arms sale to China at the last minute because of U.S. objections.

It's clear Israel wants land, weapons and water over peace. The question is how much war Israeli citizens can afford? How much military spending will Americans tolerate?

Monday, June 8, 2009

Clinton: Nuclear Attack on Israel is an Attack on U.S.

America's diplomatic stars rose to defend the United States' 51st state. The Jerusalem Post reported:

Despite its decision to pursue diplomatic negotiations with Teheran over its nuclear program, the United States would view an Iranian nuclear attack on Israel as an attack on itself, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Sunday, asserting that there would be retaliation for any such attack.
Hillary did major word parsing in her concern over a Middle East nuclear arms race. Recall Prime Minister Ehud Olmert slipped, admitting Israel had nuclear weapons. Mrs. Clinton stated:

"I think part of what is clear is we want to avoid a Middle East arms race which leads to nuclear weapons being in the possession of other countries in the Middle East."

It would maintain Israel's military power differential in the region.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Obaush on North Korea

“We are not intending to continue a policy of rewarding provocation,” President Obama said, referring to the latest nuclear test and missile test-launches by North Korea.

Bush's Sec. of State Colin Powell said in 2002, "What they want is not a discussion, they want us to give them something to stop the bad behavior. What we can't do is enter into a negotiation right away where we are appeasing them."

Now Change Means No Change from W.

Obama at WWII Sites

President Obama visited a German concentration camp and spoke from Normandy, the site of Allied beach landings. Nazi and Japanese soldiers were tried for war crimes after WWII. Sites of horror were preserved, turned into historical sites chronicling man's inhumanity to man. New Holocaust museums were built throughout the world.

Yet, President Obama won't send prisoner torture to a special investigator, much less a court. He suppresses evidence of horrific crimes from a public wanting to hold leaders and perpetrators accountable.

Why were trials and memorials important post WWII but not now? What role did justice have in helping the world move forward? What changes occurred to prevent such horrors from happening again?

America's unitary executive and "legal basis" for torture remain firmly in place. A court has not convened. The United States is at the mercy of a "good king" in this regard. Someone should investigate, bring trials and make crystal clear the authorities of a wartime President. Who knows how long Obama can stay "good"?

“Our history has always been the sum total of the choices made and the actions taken by each individual man and woman,” Mr. Obama said. “It has always been up to us.”

Yes, President Obama, it is up to you....

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Obama Speaks Honestly

When President Obama talked of the Israel-Palestine problem, he stressed "the bond between Israel and the United States is unbreakable." That statement explains his later wording:

“It’s about preventing a nuclear arms race in the Middle East that could lead this region and the world down a hugely dangerous path. I understand those who protest that some countries have weapons that others do not. No single nation should pick and choose which nation holds nuclear weapons.”

Translation: Because of that unbreakable bond, I won't speak honestly of Israel's nuclear capabilities and how that might contribute to any desire for equalization in the Middle East.

What nations chose America as the developer of nuclear weapons? Which countries selected Israel or Pakistan as rightful holders of weapons of mass destruction? What methods of war is America developing with its secret, black-operations military budget? What nations provide oversight on those WMD's? None.

Unbreakable bond? President Obama said it and he meant it.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Freedom to Keep Government Crimes in Dark

The Senate adopted the Lieberman-Graham amendment banning the release of detainee photos. It withholds any "photograph relating to the treatment of individuals engaged, captured, or detained after September 11, 2001 by the Armed Forces of the United States" if the Secretary of Defense certifies that the release of the photos would endanger citizens or the armed forces.

I believe Senators Lieberman and Graham have a few Holocaust Museums to close. They endanger our German allies. What about Native American museums chronicling their extermination by an American military?

The power of the American state clearly abused people in custody. So much for transparency or accountability. The Obama administration won't pay the legal price with torture investigations or court cases. Now it won't take the political heat for its actions.

Did the U.S. capture and abuse family members to get at suspected terrorists? That question that deserves a response in the light, however dark the answer. Lieberman-Graham continue America's descent into darkness.