Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Don't miss the roundtable at The Common Ills

Good evening, as usual I'll kick things off with Democracy Now!

U.S. Faced 68 Attacks Per Day in Iraq During July
In Iraq, the Associated Press is reporting that U.S. and coalition forces were attacked on average 68 times a day during the month of July. This marks a near 50 percent increase over the number of attacks that took place last July. Meanwhile the number of Iraqis killed since the new Iraqi government took power in April has now topped twenty one hundred.

UK Official Admits U.S. & UK "part of the problem" in Iraq
Meanwhile British foreign secretary Jack Straw has admitted that the presence of British and US troops in Iraq is fuelling the uprising there. Straw told the Financial Times QUOTE "although we are part of the security solution there, we are also part of the problem."

C.I. steered this my way:

Join CODEPINK and the national counter-recruitment movement in standing up to these warmongers and liars. Stop the next war now by stopping the next generation from becoming cannon fodder in this illegal and immoral war!
LATEST NEWS: National Education Association (NEA) Calls for the Withdrawal of Troops and the Protection of Student Privacy
As the support for the occupation in Iraq continues to diminish, the National Education Assocation sets a precedent by passing two items during their Representative Assembly calling for the withdrawal of troops from Iraq and the support for student privacy from military recruiters.
Read more about the NEA's Legislative Actions.
***URGENT ALERT: Scrap the Pentagon's Illegal New Database***
It's recently come to light that if you're between the ages of 16 and 30, the Pentagon has been secretly collecting information about you since 2002. Data from various sources--such as your social security number, height, weight, ethnicity, email address, grade point average and cell phone number--have been merged into a giant database and outsourced to a private corporation (Be Now Inc.) with no published privacy policies or opt-out procedures.
Take action now by asking your Representative to investigate and shut down this database.

Speaking of C.I., let's note something that made it up at The Common Ills last night.
And is there a reason our big brave internet's not all over this story? Randi Rhodes was talking about the story. I'll give you a possible answer at the end so hang on to the ending.

From "One of them made cuts in my penis. I was in agony:"

They took the scalpel to my right chest. It was only a small cut. Maybe an inch. At first I just screamed ... I was just shocked, I wasn't expecting ... Then they cut my left chest. This time I didn't want to scream because I knew it was coming.
One of them took my penis in his hand and began to make cuts. He did it once, and they stood still for maybe a minute, watching my reaction. I was in agony. They must have done this 20 to 30 times, in maybe two hours. There was blood all over. "I told you I was going to teach you who's the man," [one] eventually said.
They cut all over my private parts. One of them said it would be better just to cut it off, as I would only breed terrorists. I asked for a doctor.
Doctor No 1 carried a briefcase. "You're all right, aren't you? But I'm going to say a prayer for you." Doctor No 2 gave me an Alka-Seltzer for the pain. I told him about my penis. "I need to see it. How did this happen?" I told him. He looked like it was just another patient. "Put this cream on it two times a day. Morning and night." He gave me some kind of antibiotic.
I was in Morocco for 18 months. Once they began this, they would do it to me about once a month. One time I asked a guard: "What's the point of this? I've got nothing I can say to them. I've told them everything I possibly could."
"As far as I know, it's just to degrade you. So when you leave here, you'll have these scars and you'll never forget. So you'll always fear doing anything but what the US wants."

That's what we're accused of doing.

Here's a story on the speaker from the story above - Stephen Grey and Ian Cobain's "Suspect's tale of travel and torture: Alleged bomb plotter claims two and a half years of interrogation under US and UK supervision in 'ghost prisons' abroad:"

For two and a half years US authorities moved Benyam Mohammed around a series of prisons in Pakistan, Morocco and Afghanistan, before he was sent to Guantánamo Bay in September last year.
Mohammed, 26, who grew up in Notting Hill in west London, is alleged to be a key figure in terrorist plots intended to cause far greater loss of life than the suicide bombers of 7/7. One allegation, which he denies, is of planning to detonate a "dirty bomb" in a US city; another is that he and an accomplice planned to collapse a number of apartment blocks by renting ground-floor flats to seal, fill with gas from cooking appliances, and blow up with timed detonators.
In an statement given to his newly appointed lawyer, Mohammed has given an account of how he was tortured for more than two years after being questioned by US and British officials who he believes were from the FBI and MI6. As well as being beaten and subjected to loud music for long periods, he claims his genitals were sliced with scalpels.
He alleges that in Morocco he was shown photos of people he knew from a west London mosque, and was asked about information he was told was supplied by MI5. One interrogator, he says, was a woman who said she was Canadian.
Drawing on his notes, Mohammed's lawyer has compiled a 28-page diary of his torture. This has been declassified by the Pentagon, and extracts are published in the Guardian today.

No mailbag tonight because I'm running late. I called C.I. this morning and Jess had already called. Today's important issue was beat up on a woman who reports to a woman. At least online. Everyone got into the act. I haven't read the story but I doubt it's earth shattering. Still that's all the big brave internet wanted to talk about. But not a lot of talk of the two Guardian stories. There's a roundtable going on right now that will go up at The Common Ills tonight. How important is the roundtable? Rebecca's participating from St. Croix.

I'm out the door (date) but as soon as I get back, I'll be checking to see if it's up. Peace.