Monday, October 27, 2008

US and Iraq v. Syria?

An apparent U.S. helicopter raid into Syria on Sunday killed eight people, prompting a sharp condemnation from Damascus and a defense of the cross-border operation from an Iraqi official who said it targeted a known group of terrorists.
The reported operation in al-Boukamal, roughly six miles from the border with Iraq, occurred about 4:45 p.m., the Syrian Arab News Agency reported, citing an unnamed government source.
Without confirming U.S. involvement, Iraqi government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said the group targeted in the raid was responsible for attacks in Iraq, including one recently that killed 13 police in an Iraqi village near the Syrian border, the Reuters news service reported.

The above is from Ellen Knickmeyer and Ernesto Londono's "U.S. Helicopter Raid Kills 8 Inside Syria" (Washington Post) on yesterday's attack and while the US administration officially plays dumb, Iraq's puppet government has offered a confirmation. Reuters reports: "A deadly raid on the Syrian side of Iraq's border, blamed by Syria on the United States, targeted an area used by insurgents for attacks on Iraq, Iraqi government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said on Monday."
CNN cites Sgt Brooke Murphy as one military spokesperson stonewalling: "Unfortunately, we cannot confirm anything at the moment." Borzou Daragahi and Julian E. Barnes (Los Angeles Times) explain, "In Washington, several military representatives who were asked about the operation did not deny that a raid had taken place. Although they would not confirm the attack, they used language typically employed after raids conducted by secretive special operations forces." At the New York Times, Katherine Zoepf's "Syria and Iran Blame U.S. in Blast on Iraq Border" offers:

In Tehran, an Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman condemned the attack on Monday, saying a violation of the territorial integrity of any sovereign state was unacceptable, The Associated Press reported. Syria's state-run media intensified its criticism of the United States on Monday, with the government newspaper Tishrin accusing American forces of committing "a war crime," Agence-France Press said.
A senior American military official, however, said United States military helicopters were not involved in the incident.
The United States is trying to negotiate a strategic agreement with Iraq that would allow American troops to remain in the country and carry out military operations. The pact faces strenuous opposition from neighboring countries, especially Syria and Iran, because of fears that the United States might use Iraqi territory to carry out attacks on them.
The United States has no diplomatic relations with Iran and has withdrawn its ambassador to Syria.

Turning to the US presidential race, I'm noting Peter Hamby's "Palin meets with wife of fallen Fort Wainwright soldier" (CNN) on GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin:

In one of the more solemn moments of her vice presidential campaign, Sarah Palin and her husband Todd met Sunday with the wife of a fallen Army infantryman who had been stationed at Fort Wainwright in Alaska with their son Track.
After wrapping up a boisterous evening rally in Asheville, North Carolina, the Palins were greeted on the airport tarmac by Karie Eggleston, whose husband, 21-year old Cody Eggleston, died last week from wounds suffered during an October 16 mortar attack north of Baghdad.

Palin is John McCain's running mate and Becky notes this posted by Matt Lira to the McCain - Palin '08 blog:

Some North Carolina Wisdom

Here are a few of the "Joe the Plumber" videos that you've submitted over the last week. The energy, enthusiasm and activism of our grassroots supporters are growing stronger everyday. Click here to watch more "Joe the Plumber" videos.

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Ralph Nader is the independent presidential candidate, Matt Gonzalez is his running mate. Saturday he attempted to set a record and he did. Brady highlights this from Team Nader:

Nader Accomplishes 21-Stop Tour

Sunday, October 26, 2008 at 12:00:00 AM


Press Release
Contact: Toby Heaps, 202-471-5833,

Nader Successful at Guinness World Record Attempt, Rolls through 21 MA Towns in One Day

Independent Presidential Candidate Ralph Nader set out Saturday morning to set a Guinness World Record for most speeches in 24 hours. He had to meet the Guinness threshold of a minimum of 15 spontaneous speeches on different topics at least 10 minutes in length and with at least 10 people in attendance at different venues.

Just before 1 a.m. EST, Mr. Nader completed his 21st speech in Sheffield after having started the day with a 7:15 a.m. departure from his hometown of Winsted, Connecticut. Along the way, Mr. Nader, never one to take on a challenge lightly, delivered each speech not only in a different venue as required by Guinness, but in a different municipal jurisdiction which made for a total of more than 365 miles traveled.

Mr. Nader stuck to a tight schedule, keeping mostly to his alloted speaking time through the multi-pronged marathon, which included taking questions, signing up new supporters, and fundraising. In total, Mr. Nader raised thousands of dollars in small contributions, distributed thousands of pieces of campaign merchandise, and spoke directly to well over 1,000 people, or an average of over 50 people at every stop. In the coming days, the Nader/Gonzalez campaign will submit all the paperwork, photography and video footage to Guinness World Records to be evaluated and decided upon.

For more information and to see a full itinerary, please visit



Cynthia McKinney is the Green Party presidential candidate and Rosa Clemente is her running mate. They've announced campaign stops in Texas:

Mckinney to Visit Texas Communities
Friday, 24 October 2008 22:30

For Immediate Release:
Thursday, October 23, 2008

kat swift, co-chair, cell 210-471-1791,

Thomas Muhammad, Co-Chair, 214-460-7672,

Presidential Candidate's Texas Visit Brings Communities Back to into the White House Discussion

GALVESTON, TX -- 40 days after Ike and one week from today,
Presidential Campaign Team McKinney/Clemente will tour Tejas
beginning with the devastation in Galveston & Houston.

"Our plight has been overshadowed by the election and the economy.
I had been supporting Barack Obama, but I am getting more and more
disillusioned with the Democratic party altogether." - a native
Galvestonian, recently told the Power to the People Campaign.
"Seventy percent of the homes here were destroyed and this is a town
of sixty thousand people. That's a lot of votes..."

Cynthia McKinney, former Congresswoman who lead the investigation
into the federal government response to Hurricane Katrina, will be
in Galveston for a Press Conference on Thursday, October 30th. A
follow-up Press Release will give specifics.

Beginning 10 days after Hurricane Katrina ravaged parts of the
south, Rosa Clemente provided on the ground reporting as an
independent journalist to independent radio stations and mainstream
media outlets all over the world. Friday, October 31st she will
travel to Galveston.

Cynthia McKinney and Rosa Clemente seeking election to the White
House in 2008. On October 30th and 31st, voters in Texas will hear
what these women have to say about current issues impacting our
local communities and those that continue to be put on the back
burner during every election season - class struggle, the prison
industrial complex, media justice, gentrification, a just
immigration policy, police brutality, war crimes and impeachment
proceedings being levied on those responsible in high office, and
addressing the Palestinian perspective in the Middle East.

Rounding out their Tejas Tour, Rosa Clemente speaks in San Anto Oct
30th at Ruta Maya Cafe and at HallowGreen in Houston, Oct 31 at the
Houston Institute for Culture. Cynthia McKinney will be speaking at
the S.H.A.P.E. Center in Houston, October 30th, be interviewed Oct.
31st on on KHVN-AM Radio (97.0) from 12-1PM, and participate in a
free, public Candidate Forum in Plano, Oct 31, at the MAS Youth


Location of Events:

S.H.A.P.E. Center at 3815 Live Oak, Houston, 77004 at 7 pm.
Houston Institute for Culture at 708B Telephone Rd., Houston, next
door to Bohemio's, 7pm
MAS Youth Center, 740 F Ave, Plano, 75074, 8-10pm
Ruta Maya Riverwalk Cafe, 107 E. Martin St., San Antonio 78205

For further details:

In Dallas/Ft.Worth area:
Thomas Muhammad, 214-460-7672,

In San Antonio:
kat swift, 210-471-1791,

In Houston/Galveston:
Don Cook, 713-705-5594,
Green Party of Texas,

Recovery efforts in Galveston: Operation H.E.A.R.T. (Helping
Everyone Achieve Recovery Together) at San Jacinto Elementary. They
are accepting donations of all kinds of things, especially school
supplies, backpacks, clothing, etc. All money and items go directly
to Galveston students and their families. The center is open M-F
from 9-4.

For more Power to the People campaign information:

Digg "Rosa Clemente" & "Cynthia McKinney"

Cynthia McKinney on video
here, here, BreakTheMatrix here, Democracy Now! here, music video here

Rosa Clemente on video
- Interview: Current TV/Rock the Vote

- Clips from recent NYC lecture:
here, here, here

~ E N D ~

The e-mail address for this site is

 the new york times
 katherine zoepf