Major Iraq Attacks on Hold Until After U.S. Vote
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11 Oct 2004 - MiddleEast.Org - MER is Free
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NOVEMBER ahead:
U.S. Election and then more massive Iraqi attacks

US/UK Seize Independent Media Servers
Another unprecedented assault on basic civil liberties

"If the security services of the UK or US can just
walk in and take away a server, then there is
no freedom of expression."


MIDDLEEAST.ORG - MER - Washington - 11 October: The Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld made an unannounced visit to Iraq in recent days. And soon after the American election the superpower military will be much more fully unleashed throughout the country preparing to push the U.S.-appointed strong-man Iyad Allawai forward in the carefully staged 'election' that will proceed if 'conditions are right'. In other words, just as Hamid Karzai was U.S. -installed and then essentially U.S.-elected in Afghanistan, the same template is now planned for Iraq.

Remember the old days when the Soviet Union used invasion and then puppet regimes to enforce their power and authority? But the Russians usually skipped the rumped up and oh-so-deceptive 'elections' stage. But even so -- and even with everyone knowing that the rules and money are such, that the power and propaganda are such -- the elections facade works in some quarters. The United Nations, and today the Vatican have bought into it -- even if there has been an unprecedented protest from U.N. workers and even if Rome laments it is all 'illigimate' but now alive it has to be nurtured. Trying to mask oh so many realities behind what is actually an elections ruse the Americans continue to push forward to get their way constantly proclaiming 'freedom', 'democracy', and American values superior to all others.

The next time around, just a few months from now in Iraq, an overtly militarily occupied country must first have its 'evil' insurgent opposition co-opted, neutralized, or taken down.

First weapon of choice for doing so is the CIA and the massive use of money, intrique, covert ops, and co-optation. After all the largest CIA station in the world since the days of Vietnam has to be extra busy doing something special.

When things can't be done CIA covertly -- and remember the CIA failed badly after the Gulf War for more than a decade in bringing down Saddam -- then the Pentagon Generals get the task. With overwhelming firepower and space-age technology in a few weeks the U.S. military will soon be unleashed as never before in an impoverished Middle East country. This is all but certain now regardless of which of the two approved American candidates have power in Washington.

Meanwhle, the 'war on terrorism' is having further ongoing negative ramfications on the very 'freedom' and 'democracy' the Americans are so intend on constantly declaring; even if not really always pursuing. Another unprecedented development has just taken place - the seizure of internet servers from one of the most independent if somewhat anarchic 'freelance' group of journalists in the U.S. and Europe known as Indymedia. The journalists and the organizations involved were not even told what or why -- their 'pens' and 'loudspeakers' were simply taken away.


US seizes webservers from
independent media sites


By Rachel Shabi

The Guardian - UK - Monday October 11, 2004: American authorities have shut down 20 independent media centres by seizing their British-based webservers. On Thursday a court order was issued to Rackspace, an American-owned web hosting company in Uxbridge, Middlesex, forcing it to hand over two servers used by Indymedia, an international media network which covers of social justice issues and provides a "news-wire", to which its users contribute. The websites affected by the seizure span 17 countries.

It is unclear why, or to where, the servers have been taken. The FBI, speaking to the French AFP, acknowledged that a subpoena had been issued but said this was at the request of Italian and Swiss authorities.

"It is not an FBI operation," said its spokesman, Joe Parris.

Rackspace told Indymedia that it had been served with a court order under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty, under which countries assist each other in investigations such as international terrorism, kidnapping and money laundering

It is unclear why such a treaty would apply in this context. A UK Indymedia journalist said: "The authorities may just be using this as a trawling exercise. We don't know."

It is also unclear if the Home Office was involved.

The Metropolitan police said it was not aware of the move.

The UK Indymedia site is now working, because it was backed up on another server, unlike others which are still shut down.

One of the servers was to be used to stream web radio coverage of the European Social Forum conference in London next week.

Aidan White, the general secretary of the International Federation of Journalists, condemned the "intolerable and intrusive" action .

Tim Gopsill of the NUJ said: "If the security services of the UK or US can just walk in and take away a server, then there is no freedom of expression."

Major Assaults on Hold Until After U.S. Vote

Attacks on Iraq's rebel-held cities will be delayed,officials say.
But that could make it harder to allow wider, and more
legitimate,
Iraqi voting in January.

By Mark Mazzetti

Los Angeles Times - October 11, 2004: WASHINGTON The Bush administration plans to delay major assaults on rebel-held cities in Iraq until after U.S. elections in November, say administration officials, mindful that large-scale military offensives could affect the U.S. presidential race.

Although American commanders in Iraq have been buoyed by recent successes in insurgent-held towns such as Samarra and Tall Afar, administration and Pentagon officials say they will not try to retake cities such as Fallouja and Ramadi where the insurgents' grip is strongest and U.S. military casualties could be the highest until after Americans vote in what is likely to be an extremely close election.

"When this election's over, you'll see us move very vigorously," said one senior administration official involved in strategic planning, speaking on condition of anonymity.

"Once you're past the election, it changes the political ramifications" of a large-scale offensive, the official said. "We're not on hold right now. We're just not as aggressive."

Any delay in pacifying Iraq's most troublesome cities, however, could alter the dynamics of a different election the one in January, when Iraqis are to elect members of a national assembly.

With less than four months remaining, U.S. commanders are scrambling to enable voting in as many Iraqi cities as possible to shore up the poll's legitimacy.

U.S. officials point out that there have been no direct orders to commanders to halt operations in the weeks before the November 2 U.S. election. Top administration officials in Washington are simply reluctant to sign off on a major offensive in Iraq at the height of the political season.

Asked for comment, White House spokesman Taylor Gross said, "The commanders in the field will continue to make the decisions regarding military operations, and will continue to assist the Iraqi people in the pursuit of a more peaceful and safer Iraq."

Pentagon officials said they see a benefit to waiting before an offensive in the so-called Sunni Triangle, the insurgent-dominated region north and west of Baghdad. That would allow more time for political negotiations and targeted airstrikes in Fallouja.

"We're having more impact with our airstrikes than we had expected," said a senior Defense official, speaking on condition of anonymity. "We see no need to rush headlong with hundreds of tanks into Fallouja right now."

Because U.S. commanders no longer have carte blanche to run military operations inside Iraq, they must seek approval from interim Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi, who has his own political future to consider even though he owes his position to the U.S.

U.S. officials said Allawi had backed a broad plan to retake insurgent-controlled cities in Iraq before the January election. Allawi approved the recent successful U.S. offensive in Samarra, which U.S. commanders considered necessary only after a local government installed by Allawi buckled under constant attack by insurgents.

Yet there has been occasional friction between U.S. commanders in Baghdad and the Iraqi government that took power after the U.S.-led coalition handed over sovereignty June 28.

In August, top U.S. officers in Iraq and Pentagon officials were angry when Allawi ordered a halt to a day-old, U.S.-led offensive against Shiite Muslim cleric Muqtada Sadr's militia as it holed up inside the sacred Imam Ali Mosque in Najaf.

Allawi called the cease-fire to allow time for negotiations with Sadr, which ultimately broke down. U.S. officials in Baghdad and Washington argued that such frictions were just part of a gradual process of reducing Iraq's dependence on the U.S. military.

"We made a deal, and that's what you get when you set up an interim government," a senior military official at the Pentagon said. "But the alternative is not recognizing them."

U.S. officials said the recent offensive operation in Samarra went more smoothly than they had expected, and has boosted optimism that more cities can be wrested from insurgent hands before January's election.

"People looked at Samarra and said, 'Wow, this works.' It wasn't nearly as difficult an operation as we had anticipated," the senior Defense official said. "After Samarra, we now believe we can do more."

Just weeks ago, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and Army Gen. John P. Abizaid of U.S. Central Command began lowering expectations about how comprehensive the January vote would be, suggesting that some rebellious cities such as Fallouja might have to be left out of the balloting.

U.S. officers in Baghdad said that the biggest difference between the Samarra operation and the failed U.S. offensive in Fallouja in April was that select units of the Iraqi national guard held their ground under enemy fire. In April, the U.S.-trained Iraqi security forces in Fallouja capitulated soon after the U.S. offensive began.

"You've got to have a credible Iraqi security force that the local populace has confidence in," said Army Col. Bob Pricone, chief of operations at the U.S.-led coalition forces' headquarters in Baghdad. "Four or five months ago, the populace didn't have a lot of confidence in the Iraqi national guard."

Still, Pentagon officials say that it may not be militarily feasible to bring every Iraqi city in the Sunni Triangle under the control of U.S. forces and the Iraqi government in time for the January election. The military view was contradicted by senior State Department officials who declared in recent congressional testimony that there were no plans to exclude any Iraqi city from voting.

"The State Department can talk about people voting everywhere. But securing Iraq in time for the election can't happen without the U.S. military," the Defense official said.

During a recent trip to Washington, Allawi expressed his interest in reclaiming insurgent-controlled cities in the Sunni Triangle in time for the January election, even in light of the potentially negative political impact in Iraq that a bloody military operation could have.

Yet officials say that the man who owes his job to President Bush and might not have such a warm relationship with a President John F. Kerry does not want to press his case too hard before the U.S. election.

"A lot of his political future depends on our election," said the senior administration official.

Conversely, much of the future of the U.S. in Iraq may depend on Allawi and his ability to emerge from the shadow of the occupation and ensure that Iraq reaches its own political milestone in January.

For 138,000 U.S. troops in Iraq trying to break the will of a deadly insurgency, that means understanding and sometimes bending to the needs of U.S. politics and the demands of their Iraqi hosts.

Said Pricone, the operations chief: "We'll work through as many cities as the Iraqi government wants us to."






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October 2004


Magazine



Iran Next - Part 1
(October 31, 2004)
In a few days the American election itself will be history. The likelihood is the Bush/Cheney/neocon regime will remain in power; hard as that still is for so many to imagine and understand. Should the Democrats win the White House Middle East policies will be largely in the hands of the neoliberals and the super money-men like Haim Saban who when it comes to the Middle East and Israel have far more in common with the neocons than has yet been realized by many who will vote for them. Whatever happens on Tuesday next the build-up to attacking and if at all possible regime changing Iran is well underway and the showdown increasingly imminent.

Osama, Bush, Kerry - Past, Present, Future
(October 30, 2004)
Few Middle East realities have been heard during this long grueling American election campaign. Most of the rhetoric has been extraordinarily self-righteous and self-serving, disingenuous and dishonest. Sad and tragic as it is to have to say, for many in the Middle East and around the world beyond American shores, tactics aside, the words of Osama Bin Laden ring more true to their experience and perspective regarding U.S. foreign policy than those of either George Bush or John Kerry.

Fahrenheit 9/11 - Watch It On Your Computer This Weekend
(October 30, 2004)
Who would have imagined on 9/11 more than three years ago now that the top front-page story in the Washington Post Saturday before the 2004 election would be a picture of Osama Bin Laden addressing the American people! Reality keeps trumping fiction time after time in our era!

Escalating War Against the World after November 2nd?
(October 29, 2004)
Whether the Americans are lead by Bush and the neocons, or by Kerry and the neoliberals, the reality is that both of the great American political parties are today dominated by their super-hawkish Israeli-connected elements and that both are heavily mortgaged to major, however competing, segments of the Israeli-Jewish lobby in Washington.

ARAFAT - Pathetic Symbolism for the 'Grand Old Man' of the Palestinians
(October 29, 2004)
There is often such pathetic symbolism surrounding Yasser Arafat even as many of his people cling to his legacy as the 'symbol of Palestinian nationalism' -- itself nearly as tattered and frail as the Grand Old Man has himself become.

Bush Uncensored; Cheney Unauthorized
(October 28, 2004)
MAKE SURE TO WATCH THESE TWO VIDEOS ABOUT GEORGE BUSH and DICK CHENEY

Gaza Scam + Dem Party Emails American Jews
(October 27, 2004)
The price for the past political trickery has already been very high. The poison of the Israeli-Arab conflict has spread continually for decades now and played a substantial role in bringing about today's 'Clash of Civilizations' whose end is yet in sight. The eventual future price for what is happening these days threatens to be higher yet, potentially catastrophic.

IRAN Attack Imminent?
(October 24, 2004)
Though few in the world may fully realize it, international society is now at a historic moment and the future, even a potential World War III, is in the balance. Hence the leaks coming from Washington from those trying to warn, and to prevent, what the top neocons and Israeli operatives are pushing hard to bring about. Hence last month's extremely unusual 'Israeli Spy Scandal' which had officials in the FBI charging people working on the Iranian attack in coordination with the Israeli-Jewish lobby with espionage for Israel. Hence, as this article by a former National Security Council operative suggests: "Intelligence circles report that both intelligence agencies (CIA and Pentagon) are in open revolt against the Bush White House." It appears to have been quickly written and then quickly internet published using LebanonWire in the Middle East.

Cheney Uncovered - An Unauthorized Documentary by the CBC
(October 23, 2004)
Reporter Jean Heller presented Soviet satellite photos which did not show Iraqi troops amassed on the Saudi border to the Pentagon. "It's what it (the photos) didn't show that's more important. What you expected to see were tanks on the border. There was none that we could see. I said, look, if you can prove to me that our story isn't true, we won't run it. And they just ignored it. They have never shown those (U.S. satellite images) photos. Not then and not since."

New CIA 'Shocking' Cover-Up
(October 22, 2004)
Completed in June, mandated by Congress nearly two years ago, the CIA Report that names names is being suppressed until after the election. "What all the other reports on 9/11 did not do is point the finger at individuals, and give the how and what of their responsibility. This report does that," said the intelligence official. "The report found very senior-level officials responsible."

Talk about American Imperialism and Chutzpah!
(October 22, 2004)
The reaction in many quarters must be 'Oh My God'. Bill, Hillary, and Tenet all seek higher office! Talk about American Imperialism and Chutzpah!

The WARLORDS of AMERICA
(October 21, 2004)
Regardless of what happens on 2 November in the U.S. election, one group or another of "the Warlords of America" will be in power in Washington. And the years now immediately ahead, regardless if the President is named Kerry or Bush, are quickly shaping up as likely to be the most dangerous in modern history.

America on the Edge
(October 20, 2004)
The amazing thing about this American election is that in view of what has happened in the U.S. and in the world the Democrats should be running away with it -- and yet they are struggling everywhere and likely to go down to defeat.

Israel on Road to being Pariah State
(October 15, 2004)
Indeed Israeli policies and attitudes have for some time now seriously poisoned political relations throughout the Middle East, substantially helped bring about the era of the 'Clash of Civilizations', and through the powerful Israeli/Jewish lobby in Washington pushed the United States into the invasion of Iraq and other militarist isolated policies whose dangerous and destructive ramifications will be felt for many years to come

The Next Generation of Palestinians
(October 13, 2004)
If what has happened in Gaza in recent years would have happened in the USA (adjusted for population size) more than 100,000 Americans would have been killed and more than a quarter million homes destroyed by a foreign occupying army using battle tanks and attack helicopters against small resistance groups in cities and towns.

AMERICAN SECRET GULAG EXPANDING
(October 14, 2004)
THE CIA has greatly expanded its activities throughout the Middle East including in Jordan and Egypt as well as Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and other countries throughout the region. Of course the CIA and the Mossad are working more closely together than ever to control the region and enforce what is now essentially the militarily imposed 'new world order' first announced during the current President father's days in the White House. Before President Bush I became President he was in fact the Director of the CIA, whose main headquarters is now named after him.

AOL Censors MER
(October 20, 2004)
AOL -- one of the largest internet service providers -- is blocking and censoring MER. Persons who subscribe to MER using an AOL email address can not receive MER -- it is being secretly censored from their mailboxes by AOL without notice of any kind. It is believed persons working for AOL may be censoring MER in coordination with Jewish Zionist groups. It may be that AOL has a special relationship with Jewish.com and other Israeli-connected groups in some way. It is all being done in secret with no notice of any kind to either AOL users or MER. A few of the messages we have received from AOL subscribers to MER follow:

Major Iraq Attacks on Hold Until After U.S. Vote
(October 11, 2004)
The Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld made an unannounced visit to Iraq in recent days. And soon after the American election the superpower military will be much more fully unleashed throughout the country preparing to push the U.S.-appointed strong-man Iyad Allawai forward in the carefully staged 'election' that will proceed if 'conditions are right'. In other words, just as Hamid Karzai was U.S. -installed and then essentially U.S.-elected in Afghanistan, the same template is now planned for Iraq.

U.S. Forces IMF into secret Iraqi debt 'forgiveness' scheme
(October 11, 2004)
But maybe most of all in the longer run, and unspoken now for all of these reasons by the powers that be, once Iraq's prior debt to other countries is 'off the books', the new U.S.-installed and CIA-controlled government in Baghdad is free to sign agreements with the Americans -- secret or otherwise -- that will essentially mortgage Iraq's future oil revenues to the U.S.A. and those it approves.

Chomsky on American Force and Pre-emption
(October 10, 2004)
"Bush planners know as well as others that the resort to force increases the threat of terror, and that their militaristic and aggressive posture and actions provoke reactions that increase the risk of catastrophe."

IRAN - Targeted by U.S. and Israel
(October 9, 2004)
You would think after the Iraq debacle that the ability of the U.S. to blackball, sanction, and then attack, occupy and regime-change another country would be considerable reduced. Not so however as this article in Z Magazine helps explain with regard to Iran. Indeed, soon after the American election the situation will quickly escalate.

The Debates - Fixed and Controlled
(October 8, 2004)
The moderators -- both from the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) -- could have, and should have, asked hard, probing, unexpected questions like this:

Israeli AIPAC Spy Scandal - Update
(October 7, 2004)
It was just a month ago that the latest Washington spy scandal involving the very heart of the Israeli-Jewish Lobby had everyone buzzing. Then it faded from view as the corporate media moved on, as CBS News which originally broke the story found itself under assault, and as the election campaign and debates took center stage. Interesting, not one question from the PBS moderators about Israeli spying, nor even about the U.S. veto of the Security Council resolution condemning Israel, nor the International Court of Justice decision doing the same. Here's an update -- however inadequate -- from yesterday's L.A.Times. Though the real heart of the story should be AIPAC and the influence, tactics, and status of the Israeli-Jewish lobby; instead they focus on just the individual and not as they should on the large group of support persons and organizations. This should especially include, of course, the current cabal of largely Jewish neocons in top positions...including the one who hired Larry Franklin (Douglas Feith), and the ones who hired him (Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Perle).

AOL Blocks and Censors MER Articles
(October 6, 2004)
AOL is blocking and censoring MER articles because of pressures originating with Jewish and Israeli groups.

Emergency U.N. Security Council Meeting on Israel
(October 4, 2004)


The Springsteen 'Vote For Change' Concerts
(October 5, 2004)
"The press has let the country down. It's taken a very amoral stand, in that essential issues are often portrayed as simply one side says this and the other side says that. I think that Fox News and the Republican right have intimidated the press into an incredible self-consciousness about appearing objective and backed them into a corner of sorts where they have ceded some of their responsibility and righteous power." - Bruce Springsteen

Israel's Peacenik - Uri Avneri: Realities
(October 5, 2004)
"Uri Avneri, along with many Israelis and Jews, rightly fears that at some point Israel will be the direct target of blame for it's major contribution to having brought about such terrorism in the world and pushing the U.S. into invading Iraq. It is an understandable fear; for it is to a significant degree true."

Iraq is a "disaster...that will haunt the U.S. for decades" - Wall Street Journal Reporter
(October 2, 2004)
Iraq is a "disaster" that has deteriorated "into a raging barbaric guerilla war" that will haunt the United States for decades.

The Passion of the Bush
(October 2, 2004)
As the modern-day American-Israeli led Christian-Jewish crusade to remake the Middle East in the name of 'democracy and freedom' proceeds, this new documentary is telling indeed. It was first shown at the Republican Convention in New York a few weeks ago; and now, as a kind of Bush-loving counter to Fahrenhite 9/11, the DVD is being rushed out in advance of the upcoming election.

U.S. and Israel Prepare for Iran +
(October 1, 2004)
Even as the two branches of the American political establishment semi-debated last night who would fight the new wars better than the other, even as U.S. and Israeli battle tanks and attack aircraft bombed and killed in Iraq and Palestine worse than ever, preparations to either force compliance or attack Iran, Syria, Hezbollah (Lebanon), Hamas (Palestine), and North Korea soon after the American election are fast proceeding at the Pentagon and the CIA.




© 2004 Mid-East Realities, All rights reserved