Thursday, January 12, 2006

Other Items

Report on the CIA secret prisons and be the subject of an investigation. Apparently true all over the world. Doreen Carvajal's "Swiss Investigate Leak to Paper on C.I.A. Prisons" (IHT via NYT, they're both owned by the New York Times):

"The Egyptians have sources confirming the presence of secret American prisons," said the document, dated Nov. 15 and written in French to summarize the contents of the fax.
"According to the embassy's own sources, 23 Iraqis and Afghans were interrogated at the Mikhail Kogalniceau base at Constanza, on the Black Sea."
The leaked fax, which the newspaper said was sent by satellite and intercepted by the Swiss Strategic Intelligence Service, was signed by Egypt's foreign minister, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, the report said.
Christoph Grenacher, the newspaper's editor in chief, said that before the article was published, newspaper officials met with high-ranking Swiss government officials, who urged the paper to withhold the information. "We concluded that the discussion about so-called secret prisons is much more important than the interests of the secret service in Switzerland," he said.

Carl noted the above International Herald Tribune article in this morning's New York Times.
He wondered how much pressure for such an investigation came from the United States? Carl, do you want to be investigated? Well do you? (I'm joking.) (Though, sadly, maybe not.)

Adam Liptak was apparently watching the Alito hearings with one eye open and one eye closed yesterday, judging by "O'Connor Casts a Long Shadow on the Nominee." Was it O'Connor that so many Republicans couldn't shut up about? Was it O'Connor whose articles were cited and quoted? Whose confirmation was constantly mentioned? Who Lindsey Graham said he needed to have a cup of coffee with? No, no, no, and no. Hint to Liptak, the Justice's initials are RBG.

Rick Lyman's "Texas Redistricting Is One More Hurdle for DeLay" tells readers the redistricing plan Tom DeLay pushed through in 2003 (after the state had already been redistricted) may hurt DeLay's chances. That's because the intent was to weaken Democrat support so they gerrymandered the districts to dilute concentrated Dem areas. One of the "untouchables" at that time, thought to be, was DeLay. Now his district might be (emphasis on might) competative. Or as DeLay so colorfully explains it:

"Of course, it's going to be a tough race," he said, spinning in his right palm a silver dollar a constituent had just given him as a good-luck piece. "The entire Democratic machine has come down here from all over the country after me."

Silver dollar? After Abramoff you'd think DeLay would be able to resist the lucre or at least keep his hands in his pockets. Apparently not.

The Associated Press notes that Guantanamo Prison has passed the four year mark. Instead of gaining any perspective, Miranda Leitsinger reports, a new two-story complex is being constructed.

??? forwards this e-mail sent out to those who sign up for updates at Dahr Jamail's Iraq Dispatches:

A little known aspect of the tragedy engulfing Iraq is the systematic liquidation of the country's academics. Even according to conservative estimates, over 250 educators have been assassinated, and many hundreds more have disappeared. With thousands fleeing the country in fear for their lives, not only is Iraq undergoing a major brain drain, the secular middle class - which has refused to be co-opted by the US occupation - is being decimated, with far-reaching consequences for the future of Iraq.
Already on July 14, 2004, veteran correspondent Robert Fisk reported from Iraq that: "University staff suspect that there is a campaign to strip Iraq of its academics, to complete the destruction of Iraq's cultural identity which began when the American army entered Baghdad."
The wave of assassinations appears non-partisan and non-sectarian, targeting women as well as men, and is countrywide. It is indiscriminate of expertise: professors of geography, history and Arabic literature as well as science are among the dead. Not one individual has been apprehended in connection with these assassinations.
According to the United Nations University, some 84 per cent of Iraq's institutions of higher education have already been burnt, looted or destroyed. Iraq's educational system used to be among the best in the region; one of the country's most important assets was its well-educated people.
This situation is a mirror of the occupation as a whole: a catastrophe of staggering proportions unfolding in a climate of criminal disregard.
As an occupying power, and under international humanitarian law, final responsibility for protecting Iraqi citizens, including academics, lies with the United States.
With this petition we want to break the silence.
1. We appeal to organisations which work to enforce or defend international humanitarian law to put these crimes on the agenda.
2. We request that an independent international investigation be launched immediately to probe these extrajudicial killings. This investigation should also examine the issue of responsibility to clearly identify who is accountable for this state of affairs. We appeal to the special rapporteur on summary executions at UNHCHR in Geneva.
*You can sign this petition online
* or write if you want to support the campaign.
This petition was launched by the B/Russell/s Tribunal and is already endorsed by CEOSI (Spain), the Portuguese hearing of the WTI, (Germany), the Swedish Antiwar committee, the IAC (USA), the International Association of Middle East Studies (IAMES), the German Middle East Studies Association (DAVO) and the European Association for Middle Eastern Studies (EURAMES), and several personalities,
like Noam Chomsky, HowardZinn, Tony Benn, Harold Pinter, Eduardo Galeano, John Pilger and MichaelParenti. See the list of principal endorsers
See also the call for action underneath and more information on
Other languages: NL - Arabic - Spanish - Portuguese - Japanese:
****Read the petition**
*Call for action** to save Iraq's Academics*
1. We call upon all people, especially academics and students, to help end the silence that surrounds the ongoing crime of the assassination of Iraqi academics and the destruction of Iraqi's educational infrastructure, and support Iraqi academics' right and hope to live in an independent, democratic Iraq, free of foreign occupation and hegemony.
2. We urge that academic institutions and organisations declare solidarity with their Iraqi colleagues.
3. We urge that academics forge links between Iraqi educators, both in exile and in Iraq, and universities worldwide.
4. We urge that student organisations link with Iraqi student organisations.
5. We urge that educators mobilise colleagues and concerned citizens to take up the cause of the salvation of Iraq's intellectual wealth, by organising seminars, teach-ins and forums on the plight of Iraq's academics.
The world's academics and intellectuals must act now to save the lives of their colleagues in Iraq.[The B/Russell/s Tribunal, in cooperation with other organisations, has started to build a network of contacts and raise public awareness and can provide information and support to individuals and groups who wish to mobilise on this issue. We are able to act as a depository and hub for this campaign]
Other languages: NL - Spanish - Arabic - Japanese - Portuguese:
****Read the petition
- Stop the Killing of Iraq's Academics.
Principal endorsers, Patronizing this campaign_
**Noam Chomsky*, Professor of Linguistics, Philosophy of Language, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Linguistics & Philosophy, USA
***Tony Benn*, President of the STOP THE WAR COALITION, Former MP, Cabinet Minister and Chairman of the British Labour Party, UK
***John M. Coetzee, *Nobel Prize in Literature 2003, South Africa
***Harold Pinter, *Nobel Prize in Literature 2005, UK
***Eduardo Galeano*, essayist, journalist, historian, and activist, Uruguay.
***Denis J. Halliday,* former UN Assistant Secretary-General 1994-98
***Hans von Sponeck*, former UN Assistant Secretary General, U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq 1998-2000, Germany
***Howard Zinn*, professor, writer, educator, and leader in nonviolent social protest, USA
***John Pilger, *journalist and documentary film-maker, UK/Australia
***Michael Parenti*, author, USA
***Antonio Negri*, moral and political philosopher, Italy
***Robert A. Dahl*, Political Theorist, Yale University
***Curtis F.J. Doebbler*, Dr., International Human Rights Lawyer.
***François Houtart,* Prof. Em., Director of the Tricontinental Center –Cetri, Belgium
***Immanuel Wallerstein*, Prof. Yale University, USA.
***Richard Falk, *Prof. Em. of International Law and Practice at Princeton University and Visiting Distinguished Professor of Global Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Chair of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, recipient of the UNESCO Peace Education Prize, USA
***Craig Calhoun*, president of the Social Science Research Council and university professor of social sciences, New York University, USA
***Naomi Klein*, award-winning journalist and author, Canada
***Gabriel Kolko*, author and historian.
***Dennis Brutus, *professor emeritus dept of africana studies univ of pittsburgh, USA
***Norman Paech*, Prof. Dr., Professor für öffentliches Recht an der Hochschule für Wirtschaft und Politik, member Deutscher Bundestag, Germany
***Juan R. I. Cole,* Professor of Modern Middle East and South Asian History at the History Department of the University of Michigan, USA
***Michael Mann*, Professor of Sociology, UCLA, USA
***Jean Bricmont, *scientist, Prof. specialist in theoretical physics, U.C. Louvain-La-Neuve, Belgium
***Pierre Klein, *Professor International Law, U.L. Bruxelles, Belgium
***Paul Kennedy*, professor of history, Yale University, author of The Rise and Decline of Great Powers, USA
***Saskia Sassen*, Professor of Sociology, The University of Chicago, USA
***Tareq Ismael*, Prof. of Political Science, University of Calgary.
***Mohammed Aref*, Science writer based in Surrey, UK Former advisor to Arab Science and Technology Foundation in United Arab Emirates (2000-2003) and science editor for Al Hayat newspaper in London(1988-2000).
***Raymond William Baker*, President of IAMES (International Associationof Middle East Studies) and President of the Administrative Board of a transnational initiative to build an international university in Iraq,Global Partners for the International University of Iraq GP-IUI).
***Guenter Meyer*, Prof. Dr., Centre for Research on the Arab World (CERAW), University of Mainz , Germany
***Michel Chossudovsky*, Professor of Economics, University of Ottawa, director Centre for Research on Globalization, Canada
***Jean Leca*, Professor (emeritus) at the Institut d' Etudes Politiquesde Paris
***Lieven De Cauter*, philosopher, Prof. Dr. K.U. Leuven / Rits, initiator of the BRussell's Tribunal
***Anthony Arnove*, editor, writer, USA
***Jim Harding, *Dr., Past Director and retired Professor, School of Human Justice, University of Regina, Canada
***Saadalla Al Fathi*, former head of the Energy Studies' Department at the OPEC secretariat
***Azmi Ashour*, managing editor of Al Ahram Al Democratia magazine in Egypt
***Ian Douglas*, Dr., Visiting Professor Political Science Department An-Najah National University* *Nablus, Palestine
***Abdul Ilah Al-Bayaty* (Writer - Iraq / France)
***Leslie Sklair*, emeritus professor of sociology, London School of Economics, UK
***Olle Josephson*, Professor in Scandinavian Languages, Director of Swedish language Council, Co-editor of the Swedish socialist quarterly Clarté
***Dirk Berg-Schlosser*, Ph.D., Prof. Dr., Institute of Political Science, Philipps-University, Marburg/Germany
***Haifa Zangana* (Novelist - Iraq / UK)
***Sabah Al-Mukhtar* (President of the Arab Lawyers Association - Iraq /UK)
***Mujbil Al-Marsumi*, University professor, IRAQ, Applied Science University, Amman, Jordan
***Imad Khadduri* (Nuclear scientist - Iraq / Canada)
***Sami Ramadani* (Senior lecturer in sociology at London Metropolitan University - Iraq / UK)
***Mundher Al-Adhami* (Research Fellow at Kings College London - Iraq / UK)
***Amir Al Ani* (Sociologist - Iraq / France)
***Ghali Hassan* (Science and Mathematics Education Centre, Curtin University - Perth, Australia)
***Niloufer Bhagwat* (Vice President of Indian Lawyers Association -Mumbai / India) ***Karen Parker* (Attorney , Association of Humanitarian Lawyers, partners of the BRussell's Tribunal - USA)
***Thomas McCarthy*, professor of philosophy, Northwestern University, USA
***Haideh Moghissi*, Ph.D, Professor, Director, MCRI Diaspora, Islam, Gender Project, Atkinson Faculty, York University, UK
***Jan Fermon* (Lawyer of Court case against General Tommy Franks in Brussels, Progress Lawyers Network - Belgium)
***Amy Bartholomew* (Law professor - Canada)
***James C. Faris*, Prof., Director Emeritus, University of Connecticut Program in Middle East Languages and Area Studies, USA
***Ayse Gul Altinay* , Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology, Sabanci University, Turkey
***Dr Martha Mundy*, Reader in Anthropology, London School of Economics
***Michael Hardt*, Professor of Literature, Duke University, USA, co-author of Empire
***Arturo Escobar*, Professor of Anthropology, University of North Carolina, USA*
**Thomas Fasy*, Associate Professor of Pathology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, USA
***William E. Connolly*, Political Theorist and Krieger-Eisenhower Professor, Johns Hopkins University, USA
***Diana Judit Milstein* . Universidad Nacional del Comahue. Argentina
***Habib Ajroud, *University of Manouba, Tunesia
***Gabriele Zamparini* (independent filmmaker - Italy/UK)
***Paola Pisi, *professor religious sciences, Italy
***Jeffrey Blankfort* (Former editor of the Middle East Labor Bulletin and currently hosts radio programs - USA)
***Jeff Archer/Malcom Lagauche* (Journalist - USA)
***Corinne Kumar* (Secretary General of El Taller International - Tunesia/ India)
***Dahr Jamail, *independent journalist, USA.
***Carlos Varea *(coordinator of SCOSI - Spanish Campaign againstOccupation and for the Sovereignty of Iraq - Spain)
***Joachim Guilliard* (Journalist, Anti-war movement - Germany)
***Sigyn Meder* (Anti-war movement - Sweden)
***Manuel Raposo* (Anti-war movement - Portugal)
***John Catalinotto* (International Action Center - USA)
***Charles Jenks* (Chair of Advisory Board and Web Manager, Traprock Peace Center, USA) ***Dahlia Wasfi* M.D. (Anti-war activist, speaker, Global Exchange, Iraq /USA) ***Larry Everest* (Author / Journalist - USA)
***Patrick Deboosere*, demographer, VUB, Belgium
***Hana Al Bayaty,* filmmaker / journalist - Iraq / Egypt / France
***Dirk Adriaensens,* coordinator SOS Iraq, executive committee B Russell's Tribunal
***Inge Van De Merlen, *B Russell's Tribunal, Belgium
***Bernard Genet* (Comaguer, Anti-war Committee Marseille - France)
***Bert De Belder M.D.* (Coordinator Intal & Medical Aid For The Third World - Belgium) ***Pol De Vos* (Stop USA - Belgium)
***Ludo De Brabander* (Vrede - Belgium)
***Dr. Nada M. Shabout*, Assistant Professor of Art History, School of Visual Arts, University of North Texas, USA
***Paola Manduca*, Prof. Genetics, University of Genua, Italy
***Ayse Berktay*, World Tribunal Organiser, Turkey
***Salah Almukhtar*, Author , journalist and Chairman Of friendship, peace and solidarity Organisation, Iraq
***Mohammed Al-Obaidi*, Prof. U.K., Spokesman and Deputy General Secretary, The People's Struggle Movement - IRAQ
***Fouad Elhage*, Dr., Editor in Chief, Al-Moharer
***Ibrahim Ebeid,* Co-Editor , Al-Moharer
***Amir Alfarge*, president of l'Association of Iraqi of France
***Ernst-Peter Rührnschopf*, mathematician, Erlangen, Germany,
***Siegrun Dewald-Rührnschopf*, Erlangen, Germany.
***Hashim Al-Tawil*, Ph.D. Art History, Henry Ford Community College, Dearborn, MI, USA
***Andy Griggs*, Board Member, United Teachers Los Angeles; Steering Committee Member, US Labor Against the War; Executive Ctte Member, National Education, Association Peace and Justice Caucus, USA
***Dan Kaplan*, Executive Secretary San Mateo (CA) Community College Federation of Teachers, USA
***Barzan Ali A. Aziz*, Senior Process Engineer, UAE
***Natasa Tucev*, PhD candidate, English Department, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Nis, Serbia, Yugoslavia
***Garbis Altinoglu*, writer and activist, Turkey
***Yildiz Aydin*, Prof. Dr., Turkey
***Analia Diana Matas* Lic. en Ciencias de la Educación Docente Universitaria Universidad Nacional de Entre Ríos. Argentina
***Chana Bloch*, Professor Emerita, poet and translator Mills College USA
***Karen Brodkin*, Professor UCLA USA
***Michael McKinley*, Senior Lecturer, International Relations and Strategy, Australian National University, Australia
***Dr Ismail Jalili*, Consultant Surgeon, Chairman National Association of British Arabs, Past President British Arab Medical Association UK
***Sherna Berger Gluck*, Professor Emerita, USA***
Daizo Kutsuzawa*, secretary general ICTI (Internatiomal Criminal Tribunal for Iraq), Japan***may muzaffar*, poet-writer, Iraq**
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Remember that Pacifica's broadcasting the Alito hearings live.

Also remember that today's scheduled topic for Democracy Now! is:

* Day Three of the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito.

Lastly, Betty's latest is up. It's called "The Tough Talking Thomas Friedman."

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