Monday, September 19, 2005

Cindy Sheehan, Diebold, Iraq -- harder and harder to hap-hap-happy talk

Micah e-mails to note more on the police pulling the plug on Cindy Sheehan's speech. From Sarah Ferguson's "NYPD Unplugs Cindy Sheehan: City’s Finest pulls move even Bush wouldn’t have tried" (The Village Voice):

Cindy Sheehan may be the Rosa Parks of the anti-war movement. But that didn't stop members of the New York Police Department from marching into the crowd of about 150 people gathered in Union Square Monday to hear her speak and yanking away the microphone.
The NYPD pulled the plug just as Sheehan was calling on the audience not to lose heart in the fight to end the war in Iraq.
"We get up every morning, and every morning we see this enormous mountain in front of us," said Sheehan, speaking on behalf of the other parents and family members of fallen soldiers who have taken up the crusade to bring the troops home.
"We can't go through it, we can't go under it, so we have to go over it," she continued, just as the cops rushed the makeshift podium.
Police dragged away Paul Zulkowitz, a.k.a. Zool, an organizer with “Camp Casey NYC,” the small encampment that he and other activists set up a month ago in Union Square in solidarity with Sheehan’s vigil outside President Bush’s ranch in Crawford, Texas. The New York branch existed much to the ire of the city’s Parks Department. Today, Zulkowitz was arrested for failing to obtain a sound permit--a charge that normally warrants no more than a summons.

Also from the article, here is the police's response:

Inspector Michael McEnroy, commander of the 13th Precinct, insisted the shutdown order had nothing to do with the content of Sheehan’s speech, but was instead about the "provocation" caused by Zulkowitz. "This has been going on for much longer than today," McEnroy said, adding of Sheehan, "I don’t even know the woman." That last part prompted one pissed-off onlooker to shoot back: "Haven't you watched the news or read a paper in the last three months?"

Renee e-mails to note Brad Freidman's "A Diebold Insider Speaks Out" (The Huffington Post):

For the first time an insider from Diebold, Inc. is speaking directly to you. Diebold: The company who tabulates -- with zero accountability and zero transparency -- the majority of America's votes. Diebold: The company who gives millions and millions of dollars to Republican politicians and virtually every Board of Election in every county in every state in America. Diebold: The company -- based in Ohio and Texas, by the way -- whose CEO promised in a Republican fundraising letter in 2003 to deliver the state of Ohio to George W. Bush in 2004.
And what is this insider -- who we'll call DIEB-THROAT if it helps get your attention -- telling you, America? Only what you already should have known. What
even the U.S. Department of Homeland Security already acknowledged in full prior to Election 2004: That your Electoral System, now wholly privatized and run by the "Halliburton of the Voting World" -- is, and has been, open and vulnerable to be rigged by one -- just one -- malicious person. Not "a conspiracy of many." Just One.
DIEB-THROAT -- someone who knows and works with them -- tells us, in
a BRAD BLOG exclusive that I recommend you actually read, that the Diebold system is "one of the greatest threats our democracy has ever known."
DIEB-THROAT tells us -- and the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security agrees -- that "one malicious person can change the outcome of any Diebold election."
DIEB-THROAT is warning you. The U.S. DHS is warning you. I am warning you. The FACTS are warning you. So what will be your excuse next time?I am speaking to you...Democrats...and you...Mainstream Media. Because, you know, the neo-Republican Party is perfectly content to watch your democracy fade away. Just as much as they were willing to watch the truth collapse in a pile of unread memos about 9/11, explode in a volley of shock-and-awe over Baghdad, or drown in the streets of New Orleans. I've said countless times, to countless Americans who would listen: This is not a matter of Right and Left...It's a matter of Right and Wrong. So what will you do about it?
It is, after all, only your democracy at stake.

This a late post, I know. My apologies. (Put it off on work related activities.) I'm tired so we'll note one item sent in by Pru and call it a night. She wonders how this will be hap-hap-happy talked? Good question. From Terri Judd and Colin Brown's "Under fire: British soldiers attacked in Basra: Army used tanks and helicopters to storm jail and free captured troops, say Iraqis" (The Independent):

British troops were struggling to maintain control in Basra last night after the city exploded into bloody violence following the alleged killing of an Iraqi policeman by a British soldier.
Two British servicemen, dressed in civilian clothes, were held at Basra's main police station after the incident. Outside, rioting began as the city threatened to descend into anarchy.
Last night, British forces used up to 10 tanks - supported by helicopters - to smash through the walls of the jail and free the two British servicemen. John Reid, the Defence Secretary, later confirmed they were back with UK forces.
Around 150 prisoners were said to have escaped during the assault, which was condemned as "barbaric, savage and irresponsible" by Mohammed al-Waili, the provincial governor. But the Ministry of Defence disputed the claim, saying that the release of the soldiers had been "negotiated".
British troops had surrounded the police station after the soldiers, alleged to be undercover commandos, had been arrested for failing to stop at an Iraqi police checkpoint, according to one report. Within minutes an angry crowd gathered and troops had to flee from blazing Warrior vehicles when the mob threw petrol bombs. A soldier could be seen scrambling for his life from a burning vehicle. The MoD said three British soldiers were injured.

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