Iraq Likely To Be Next "Phase"
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Iraq Likely To Be Next "Phase"

October 14, 2001


MID-EAST REALITIES - MER - www.MiddleEast.Org - Washington - 10/14: A powerful coalition of "hawkish" government officials, lobbyists (especially those connected with the Israelis and the arms corporations), conservative press publications and columnists, many of the national Jewish organizations, as well as millions of Christian fundamentalists associated with Pat Robertson and his daily TV "700 Club" program, is mobilized to make sure that "America's new war" does not end with Afghanistan and al-Qaeda. Amazingly the persons in official Washington considered most "moderate and reasonable" are a four-star General who was Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Pentagon before becoming Secretary of State, followed by former right-wing Secretary of Defense, now Vice-President.

Plans for further war "phases" beyond Afghanistan have already begun to be seriously made not only at the Pentagon but throughout the American capital. In many ways that's what the war mobilization, the call out of the National Guard, and the preparations for a kind of low-scale "permanent warfare" on the "homefront" are really all about. Some of the best experts in Washington believe the basic decision to attack Iraq and replace the Bathist regime there -- and then to go after Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and all other major forces in the Middle East that have the will and capability to oppose American/Israeli designs in the region or to topple any of the key American "client regimes" -- has already been made, "telegraphed" in various not-so-ambiguous ways to Washington's political establishment. But Cheney and Powell have prevailed so far at least in trying to hush public discussion of what is to come because of the very sensitive situation known as "coalition building" needed to carry out Phase 1 -- very sensitive indeed with key American Arab and Muslim allies practically pleading with Washington not to move on to further "phases" involving military attacks on any countries beyond Afghanistan.

Except when it comes to public relations and timing these pleas -- however genuine or made up of crocodile tears -- are not resonating; and are certainly not likely to prevail. When King Abdullah came visiting hoping to help out the Americans at a tense time and make sure of the U.S. commitment to protect his regime's hold on power, he returned to the region to state that he had obtained an American promise not to attack any Arab country. But he was very quickly and very publicly humiliated by the Bush Administration saying the King was simply wrong and must have "misunderstood" the discussions he had in Washington. The Saudis and Egyptians too have been similarly toyed with, but they are too weak, too scared, and too co-opted to really do anything about it.

As for the Pakistanis, the U.S. will support General Musharraf as long as he is compliant and in firm command; but should that situation change it is certainly possible the Americans, urged on by both the Israelis and the Indians, could turn their warplanes on Pakistan and at least destroy Pakistan's "Muslim bomb" nuclear weapons capabilities. This is no longer a totally fictional scenario should chaos erupt in Pakistan and it truly be "in danger" of becoming a "Muslim State", which it already is by constitution. That same powerful coalition now mobilizing for Phase 2 against Iraq surely has this potential scenario in mind for when further phases in the new unending "war against terrorism" begin to emerge from their usually secret deliberations. More on the Pakistani situation in our next article.


Pentagon hardliners press for strikes on Saddam Britain's GPs put on full alert over deadly disease

By David Rose and Ed Vulliamy

[The Observer - London, New York - Sunday October 14, 2001]: American investigators probing anthrax outbreaks in Florida and New York believe they have all the hallmarks of a terrorist attack - and have named Iraq as prime suspect as the source of the deadly spores.

Their inquiries are adding to what US hawks say is a growing mass of evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved, possibly indirectly, with the 11 September hijackers.

If investigators' fears are confirmed - and sceptics fear American hawks could be publicising the claim to press their case for strikes against Iraq - the pressure now building among senior Pentagon and White House officials in Washington for an attack may become irresistible.

Plans have been discussed among Pentagon strategists for US air strike support for armed insurrections against Saddam by rebel Kurds in the north and Shia Muslims in the south with a promise of American ground troops to protect the oilfields of Basra.

Contact has already been made with an Iraqi opposition group based in London with a view to installing its members as a future government in Baghdad.

Leading US intelligence sources, involved with both the CIA and the Defence Department, told The Observer that the 'giveaway' which suggests a state sponsor for the anthrax cases is that the victims in Florida were afflicted with the airborne form of the disease.

'Making anthrax, on its own, isn't so difficult,' one senior US intelligence source said. 'But it only begins to become effective as a biological weapon if they can be made the right size to breathe in. If you can't get airborne infectivity, you can't use it as a weapon. That is extremely difficult. There is very little leeway. Most spores are either too big to be suspended in air, or too small to lodge on the lining of the lungs.'

As claims about an Iraqi link grew, senior health officials in Britain revealed they warned all the country's GPs last week to be vigilant about the disease. 'I think we have to be prepared to think the unthinkable,' said the Government's Chief Medical Officer, Dr Liam Donaldson. The Department of Health confirmed the Government is conducting an urgent review of Britain's ability to cope with chemical or biological attacks.

It also emerged last night that three people who worked in the Florida buildings at the centre of anthrax scares are now in the UK and undergoing tests for the disease. And in America a letter sent from Malaysia to a Microsoft office was found to contain traces of anthrax.

In liquid form, anthrax is useless - droplets would fall to the ground, rather than staying suspended in the air to be breathed by victims. Making powder needs repeated washings in huge centrifuges, followed by intensive drying, which requires sealed environments. The technology would cost millions.

US intelligence believes Iraq has the technology and supplies of anthrax suitable for terrorist use. 'They aren't making this stuff in caves in Afghanistan,' the CIA source said. 'This is prima facie evidence of the involvement of a state intelligence agency. Maybe Iran has the capability. But it doesn't look likely politically. That leaves Iraq.'

Scientists investigating the attacks say the bacteria used is similar to the 'Ames strain' of anthrax originally cultivated at Iowa State University in the 1950s and later given to labs throughout the world, including Iraq.

According to sources in the Bush administration, investigators are talking to Egyptian authorities who say members of the al-Qaida network, detained and interrogated in Cairo, had obtained phials of anthrax in the Czech Republic.

Last autumn Mohamed Atta is said by US intelligence officials to have met in Prague an agent from Iraqi intelligence called Ahmed Samir al-Ahani, a former consul later expelled by the Czechs for activities not compatible with his diplomatic mission.

The Czechs are also examining the possibility that Atta met a former director of Saddam's external secret services, Farouk Hijazi, at a second meeting in the spring. Hijazi is known to have met Bin Laden.

It was confirmed yesterday that Jim Woolsey, CIA director from 1993 to 1996, recently visited London on behalf of the hawkish Defence Department to 'firm up' other evidence of Iraqi involvement in 11 September.

Some observers fear linking Saddam to the terrorist attacks is part of an agenda being driven by US hawks eager to broaden the war to include Iraq, a move being resisted by the British government.

The hawks winning the ear of President Bush is assembled around Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, his deputy Paul Wolfowitz, and a think tank, the Defence Policy Advisory Board, dubbed the 'Wolfowitz cabal'.

Their strategy to target Iraq was hammered out at a two-day seminar in September, of which the dovish Secretary of State Colin Powell had no knowledge.

The result was a letter to President Bush urging the removal of Saddam as a precondition to the war. 'Failure to undertake such an effort,' it said, 'will constitute a decisive surrender in the war against terrorism'.

In a swipe at Powell's premium on coalition-building, it continues: 'coalition building has run amok. The point about a coalition is "can it achieve the right purpose?" not "can you get a lot of members?"'

Administration officials close to the group told The Observer : 'We see this war as one against the virus of terrorism. If you have bone marrow cancer, it's not enough to just cut off the patient's foot. You have to do the complete course of chemotherapy. And if that means embarking on the next Hundred Years' War, that's what we're doing.'


By Simone Weichselbaum

[Associated Press, 13 October, LONDON]: -- An estimated 20,000 people marched through central London in the largest of several demonstrations in Europe on Saturday against the military strikes in Afghanistan.

Some sang, others chanted, a few attempted to burn American and British flags, but police said the march, on an unseasonably warm day, was peaceful.

The organizers, the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, welcomed the large turnout, saying they hope to a create a broad coalition with protesters abroad.

"It is just remarkable of the high level of interest," said Nigel Chamberlain, spokesman of CND. "We might be in a minority in public opinion, but we are here to show that there are thousands of people against the war."

London police estimated that 20,000 people joined the march from Hyde Park, Piccadilly and Trafalagar Square. Police intervened to stop attempts to burn an American flag and a paper or cardboard Union Jack flag of Britain.

In Germany, more than 25,000 peace protesters took to the streets. The largest turnout was in the capital, Berlin, where some 15,000 protesters held a protest in the central Gendarmenmarkt square, police said. The rally was preceded by several peace marches held throughout the city under the motto "No War - Stand Up for Peace."

Demonstrators from peace, church and student groups, as well as some unions, called for an immediate halt to the attacks, warning of an escalation of violence in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan. They also called on world leaders to encourage development in the region as a way to "root out terrorism at its base."

The U.S.-led coalition began its military campaign against Afghanistan on Oct. 7 after the ruling Taliban refused to hand over Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants to the United States. Bin Laden, a Saudi exile, is the prime suspect in the Sept. 11 attacks on New York and Washington in which about 6,000 people were killed.

In the southern German city of Stuttgart, about 10,000 peace protesters called on the United States to leave Afghanistan and for Germans to stand together against the war.

"This war threatens to spread a fire of hatred," Sybille Stamm, local head of the giant ver.di service union told a crowd gathered for a rally in downtown Stuttgart. Stamm criticized the government for increasing spending on state security, at the cost of social programs.

Before the rally, police said about 80 people took part in a protest vigil near the barracks where the U.S. military's headquarters for Europe are stationed. No incidents were reported.

In Sweden, several thousand people marched peacefully in the country's three biggest cities Saturday to protest the bombings.

"It's absolutely unacceptable that the world's richest country bombs the world's poorest people," said Ann-Cathrin Jarl of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom.

In Italy, youths demonstrated peacefully in Rome, Naples and several smaller cities. The biggest turnout was in Naples, with about 2,000 people. Many of the protesters were preparing to head on Sunday to Umbria, in central Italy, for a peace march organizers predict will draw tens of thousands of people.

In Glasgow, Scotland, around 1,500 people gathered in George Square for an anti-war protest.

Thousands of people across Australia rallied Saturday for peace. The demonstrations in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Adelaide had been planned for more than a year to protest the militarization of space, but became forums to oppose the military offensive in Afghanistan.

"No one supports the Sept. 11 attacks but no one supports what's happening now in Afghanistan, either. The way to remember the dead of Sept. 11 is not by building another mound of innocent people's bodies," said Denis Doherty, a rally organizer.



[New York Times - WASHINGTON, Oct. 11]: A tight-knit group of Pentagon officials and defense experts outside government is working to mobilize support for a military operation to oust President Saddam Hussein of Iraq as the next phase of the war against terrorism, senior administration officials and defense experts said.

The group, which some in the State Department and on Capitol Hill refer to as the "Wolfowitz cabal," after Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul D. Wolfowitz, is laying the groundwork for a strategy that envisions the use of air support and the occupation of southern Iraq with American ground troops to install a Iraqi opposition group based in London at the helm of a new government, the officials and experts said.

Under this notion, American troops would also seize the oil fields around Basra, in southeastern Iraq, and sell the oil to finance the Iraqi opposition in the south and the Kurds in the north, one senior official said.

"The takeover would not be dissimilar to the area we occupied in the gulf war," the official said.

The group is building its case despite President Bush's declaration that the war against Afghanistan and Osama bin Laden's terrorist network, Al Qaeda, must be fought first. The idea is to prepare for what its members see as the coming debate over the next phase of the war.

The group has largely excluded the State Department, where Secretary of State Colin L. Powell has adamantly argued that such an attack would destroy the international coalition that President Bush has assembled. Both Mr. Powell and Vice President Dick Cheney have said there is no evidence linking Iraq to the attacks.

"Our focus is on Afghanistan and the terrorist network hiding in Afghanistan right now," Mr. Bush said tonight at his news conference. But he called Mr. Hussein " an evil man."

"After all, he gassed his own people," Mr. Bush added. "We know he's been developing weapons of mass destruction." He said the administration was watching Mr. Hussein "very carefully."

On Sept. 19 and 20, the Defense Policy Board, a prestigious bipartisan board of national security experts that advises the Pentagon, met for 19 hours to discuss the ramifications of the attacks of Sept. 11. The members of the group agreed on the need to turn to Iraq as soon as the initial phase of the war against Afghanistan and Mr. bin Laden and his organization is over, people familiar with the meetings said. Both Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld and Mr. Wolfowitz took part in the meetings for part of both days.

But while the group agreed on the goal of ousting Mr. Hussein, they presented a range of views, including a discussion of the many political and diplomatic obstacles to military action.

"If we don't use this as the moment to replace Saddam after we replace the Taliban, we are setting the stage for disaster," Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House and a member of the group, said in an interview.

Richard Perle, who shares Mr. Wolfowitz's view that the Iraqi regime should be overthrown quickly with military force, said, "This has never been a fringe issue."

Neither Mr. Gingrich nor Mr. Perle discussed the substance of the meeting.

Other members of the group expressed concern that they might be pawns in what had become a bureaucratic battle. "Both Pentagon and State are probably using us to continue to support their arguments," said one member of the group.

The 18-member board includes Harold Brown, President Jimmy Carter's defense secretary; former Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger; R. James Woolsey, director of central intelligence in the Clinton administration; Adm. David E. Jeremiah, the former deputy chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; former Vice President Dan Quayle; and James R. Schlesinger a former defense and energy secretary.

The State Department, including officials who work on Iraq policy, was not briefed on the two-day meeting.

There are other signs of bureaucratic disarray with regard to setting policy regarding the war on terrorism. The White House inserted a far-reaching sentence into a letter from Ambassador John D. Negroponte, the chief United States envoy to the United Nations, to the Security Council last Sunday, senior administration officials said.

"Powell was surprised to find out about it and he was quite distressed," a senior administration official said. "Somebody should have called him."

The State Department determined that Stephen J. Hadley, the deputy national security adviser, inserted the sentence, and that Mr. Negroponte and at least two senior officials in the State Department saw the final version of the letter but did not change it, officials said.

The letter put the Security Council on notice that the United States might be forced to retaliate against other state sponsors of terrorism if it turned up new evidence, stating, "We may find that our self-defense requires further action with respect to other organizations and other states."

In another development, the Knight Ridder newspaper group reported today that senior Pentagon officials authorized Mr. Woolsey to fly to London last month on a government plane, accompanied by Justice and Defense Department officials, on a mission to gather evidence linking Mr. Hussein to the Sept. 11 attacks.

The State Department was unaware of the trip but confirmed that it did take place, a senior State Department official said. Victoria Clarke, the Pentagon's chief spokeswoman, said, "We just don't have any information on it." Mr. Woolsey did not return phone calls seeking comment.

In a conversation on Wednesday, Mr. Woolsey suggested that he was building a legal case against Iraq.

"The first thing we have to do is develop some confidence that Iraq is involved in terrorist incidents against us, not meaning Sept. 11," he said.

Mr. Woolsey cited Iraq's alleged involvement in the assassination attempt against former President George Bush in the spring of 1993, together with its work to develop weapons of mass destruction as terrorist acts that made them "a prime candidate for regime replacement."

Mr. Woolsey added that eventually Mr. Hussein would fall if subjected to a military offensive that would give the United States control of the south, support from the Kurds in the north, defections of crucial Iraqis and well-supported insurgencies.

The United States must be "willing to put up with criticism from European states and other governments," Mr. Woolsey said.

Comment on these article(s)

October 2001


Bio and Nuclear Threats Escalate As Purposeful Leaks Proliferate to Mass Media
(October 26, 2001)
The timing of newsstories like this in the major Western media should be suspect now more than ever. For more than ever in fact governments and intelligence agencies are using the mass media by leaking things at times of convenience and more importantly with their own twists and turns.

"Stop Israel!" Pleads Israeli Professor
(October 26, 2001)
One Israeli, not invited by the naive and misguided American Jewish "liberals" to the USA, speaks up from Israel with tremendous courage and conviction. Her name is Tanya Reinhart and she deserves to be taken very seriously -- though far too many don't even know about her.

"Palestinian Statehood" - Another Grotesque Deception Unfolds
(October 25, 2001)
The political smokescreens are lifting a bit as the pressures build to go beyond mere words, yet at the same time a purposeful distorting haze is taking over. Bottom line: the kind of "Palestinian State" Yasser Arafat has maneuvered his people toward and is being cornered into implementing is a grotesque distortion of their aspirations and of what use to be meant by the term "Palestinian State."

"A Pen Bought And Sold" - A Saudi Poem Revisited - MER FlashBack
(October 21, 2001)
Change comes in the Middle East, as elsewhere, in complex ways. There is the regular daily news of course; and in the region especially it is inextricably intertwined with an ever-more-sophisticated and propagandistic journalistic establishment.

(October 24, 2001)
Both of the Georges are oh so full of themselves cocky -- just the personality type so many American's truly love. One is (to the amazement of many who wonder how in the world the U.S. chooses such persons to lead it) the President of the United States.

Massacres and Devastation Escalate Further In Palestine
(October 24, 2001)
The Palestinians are essentially defenseless with their backs up against the wall, the firing wall. Their "leadership" has been so corrupted and infiltrated that the Arafat regime has hardly any credibility with its own, not to mention anyone else.

Torture Now Coming to USA?
(October 22, 2001)
Adopting the tactics (as well as the goals) of the Israelis, and the methods long taught by the CIA in Latin America as well as the Middle East, the brave new world post 11 September is changing the face of the American homeland in ways nearly all Americans would have seriously resisted just a few long weeks ago.

Millions Likely To Die in Afghanistan U.N. Warns
(October 21, 2001)
As for Afghanistan, the American CIA worked behind the scenes to bring on the Soviet invasion of 1979, then engaged the Soviet Empire in a way that brought about the near-total devastation of Afghanistan and a huge uncounted death toll.

It's "New Imperialism" says leading British MP
(October 21, 2001)
Much pressure is building at the United Nations to not open itself to still more charges of being complicitous in "genocide", not to mention to do something to stop being seen as "an extension of the American State Department" (the actual private words of a senior U.N. official).

"Comply! Resistance Is Futile!"
(October 20, 2001)
British MP (Member of Parliament) George Galloway calls it the "new imperialism" (his article coming later today). On the whole the Anglo-British press is working up quite a frenzy (with notable exceptions like The Guardian and The Independent in the UK, sometimes The Nation in the U.S.).

The "Arafat Era" Collapsing or About To Be Reborn?
(October 20, 2001)
Yasser Arafat is losing both his grip on power (extended to him by the Israelis and the Americans for the past decade since the Gulf War) and his credibility (with his own people) at the same time.

The Coming Arab Crash
(October 19, 2001)
The west's most important friends in the Arab Middle East - Fahd of Saudi Arabia, Abdullah of Jordan, Mubarak of Egypt and the PLO's Yasser Arafat - are probably the world's most vulnerable political quartet.

Saudi Amb Bandar Badly Fails, Saudi Royals in Paralysis, US Relations in Doubt
(October 19, 2001)
Prince Bandar bin Sultan's 20+ year strategy has now substantially failed. Years ago, very much behind-the-scenes of course, the very controversial and in some circles much despised Saudi Ambassador in Washington began a relationship with the some of the most conservative and militant circles in Washington, very much including those associated with the powerful Israeli/Jewish lobby.

Worse Than Worthless Wartime "Promises"
(October 18, 2001)
The list of broken and disingenuous "promises" made to the Arabs by Western political leaders is something befitting a "Saturday Night Live" parody skit -- if only they would dare!

"New Era" Says Sharon Reacting In Character to "Gandhi" Assassination
(October 17, 2001)
He had called the Palestinians "lice" and "vermin" and "cancer", and he had urged their "transfer" or "extermination". Just Monday he has tendered his resignation as Minister of Tourism, insisting that Ariel Sharon was being too moderate and too compromising.

(October 17, 2001)
As for the British, what's going on in both Palestine and Kashmir, the two most likely potential nuclear flashpoints in our world today, can be traced back directly to what the British did in these areas when they were the "Empire"

(October 17, 2001)
For some time now Palestinians have been warning that because of Israel's assassination of Palestinian leaders, "crossing the red line" in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, they would respond.

Red Cross Bombed in Kabul Before Presidential Red Cross Visit in Washington
(October 16, 2001)
You gotta love the chutzpa of the Americans. Today the President went a few blocks from the White House to the Headquarters of the American Red Cross -- a little photo op designed to further enlist "the children of America" in his recently announced effort to help the children of Afghanistan. But just as President Bush was getting ready to do his Red Cross pictures reports came in from Afghanistan that the major Red Cross center in Kabul, complete with large Red Cross emblem on its roof, was destroyed by American bombs.

Saudi/U.S. "Meltdown"? And Neutralizing Al Jazeera With A Firm Embrace
(October 16, 2001)
While American and British officials rush to make one TV appearance after another with continual reassurances everything is going "as planned", that's not quite the reality of the situation as this article in today's Guardian makes quite evident.

What Can We Do About Terrorism? by Lt. Col Robert M. Bowman (ret)
(October 15, 2001)
"Mr. President, you did not tell the American people the truth about why we are the targets of terrorism. You said that we are the target because we stand for democracy, freedom, and human rights in the world. Baloney! We are the target of terrorists because we stand for dictatorship, bondage, and human exploitation in the world."

Pentagon Far More Confused and Uncertain Than Americans Realize
(October 15, 2001)
The Bush administration is growing increasingly alarmed by the direction of the military campaign in Afghanistan after a week of almost continuous bombing has failed to dislodge either Osama bin Laden or the Taliban leadership.

Al-Qaeda Weekend Statement
(October 15, 2001)
This isn't really about "secret messages". Anyone with a $300 satellite dish can watch the statements in full, in Arabic, on al Jazeera; and the text is widely available on the Internet, in this case from London and the BBC!

Hundreds Dead in Nigeria
(October 14, 2001)
Hundreds of people have been killed in religious clashes after anti-U.S. protests turned violent, sources have told CNN. The demonstrations against the U.S.-led missile strikes on Afghanistan began peacefully on Friday but spiralled into a killing spree during Saturday, CNN's Lagos bureau chief Jeff Koinange said.

akistan's Benazir Opens Campaign in Washington as Pakistan Trembles Anarchy
(October 14, 2001)
Benazir Bhutto came to Washington this week to open her campaign for a third term as Prime Minister of the world's second largest, and only nuclear armed, Muslim State -- her first two terms she was overthrown, political and financial corruption was rampant, and her arranged husband remains in a Karachi prison.

Iraq Likely To Be Next "Phase"
(October 14, 2001)
A powerful coalition of "hawkish" government officials, lobbyists (especially those connected with the Israelis and the arms corporations), conservative press publications and columnists, many of the national Jewish organizations, as well as millions of Christian fundamentalists associated with Pat Robertson and his daily TV "700 Club" program, is mobilized to make sure that "America's new war" does not end with Afghanistan and al-Qaeda.

Saudi Royals Bugged, Embarrassed, Unstable
(October 13, 2001)
The following information is about to come out in THE NEW YORKER MAGAZINE on Monday and is being leaked in Washington this weekend to stir up interest and try to get publicity for the magazine and author on the Sunday talk shows tomorrow.

Attacks and Demonstrations Escalating in Arab and Muslim Countries
(October 13, 2001)
Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets in various cities in the Middle East to protest the U.S. military campaign in Afghanistan. Many more thronged to mosques for Friday prayers throughout the region and heard anti-American sermons.

Western Commando Forces Getting Ready
(October 13, 2001)
This article in The Telegraph today is a good outline of what now seems likely to be immediately ahead in Afghanistan, pushed forward by weather considerations as well as by current expectations that American-sponsored key governments in Pakistan, Arabia, Egypt, and Jordan, as well as the Arafat Regime, will all be able to weather the political storms with much expanded and mostly covert continual help from the western governments and intelligence services.

"War of the Worlds" by Mark Bruzonsky
(October 11, 2001)
In the case of America's new war, the full might of the USA is being mobilized not against the armies of other nation states, but against the fanatical descendants of a puritanical militant Islam whose calling has become relentless opposition to American hegemony and passionate assertion of their own quaintly medieval religious constructs.

Arafat Begs Israelis To Save Him
(October 10, 2001)
It's a most complicated political dance than ever at this historical crossroads. But bottom line Yasser Arafat and his regime have now, even more than before, thrown their future to the Israelis and the now omnipresent CIA...

Uri Avneri - Fronting for Arafat and for a Castrated "Palestinian State"
(October 10, 2001)
The Israeli writer and activist Uri Avneri is "on tour" in the USA on his way to Washington. It shouldn't come as a surprise that a few naive or on- the-take "peace groups" -- Jewish and otherwise -- have invited him to speak.

After Afghanistan, U.S. has Iraq, Lebanon, and Palestine in its Sights
(October 10, 2001)
In this case there should be no one saying down the road that they didn't know what was being planned. The Americans have said publicly and in many different ways right from the start of this "new war" that it wasn't going to end with Osama bin Laden, with the Taliban government, or with Afghanistan.

The "Palestinian State" Charade
(October 9, 2001)
Most of the Arab regimes, including that of Yasser Arafat, have proved themselves so co-opted and so gullible over the years that you can't blame the Americans for continuing to try their little tricks and deceptions -- just look how well, at least from their point-of-view, such things have worked in the past..

Anthrax Terrorism Now Likely
(October 9, 2001)
Federal officials suspect foul play rather than an environmental source is at the root of two Florida anthrax cases that have left one man dead and hundreds of co-workers lining up for medical tests.

Biological Attack? Inept or Demonstration?
(October 9, 2001)
Is someone sending a message that they can do it, a kind of primative, and deadly, deterrence attempt to try to protect themselves? Might this be an "inept attack" as today's TIMES in London suggests in its headline? As the third case of Anthrax in Florida is reported this morning, something seems to be up as the following reports indicate.

Bush versus bin Laden - Syria Elected to Security Council
(October 8, 2001)
It's all quite amazing really, President George W. Bush versus Osama bin Laden. On the one hand you have the most powerful man in the world commanding the full might of not only the world's only superpower but a whole entourage of Western European allies, the new Russia, and to a considerable extent at least behind-the-scenes many Arab and Muslim "client regimes".

Arafat's Army Opens Fire On Its Own - More Anthrax in Florida?
(October 8, 2001)
The Palestinian leadership rushed to distance itself Monday from Osama bin Laden while its police forces opened fire on university students protesting the U.S.-led military strikes on Afghanistan.

FBI Knocked...He's Not Home But You Can Find Him at the White House
(October 8, 2001)
Now the world will become much more confusing and dangerous, and the opponents of the American Empire will obviously be forced even deeper underground -- both literally and figuratively -- becoming even more insular and isolated among themselves leading to who knows what kind of future blowback.

US Journalist Warns: "Do not try to change the government in Afghanistan!"
(October 7, 2001)
Late friday evening one of the leading American journalists who is an expert on the Middle East and Islamic affairs was asked a question on CNN to which she immediately briefly answered...and that was more was asked or answered.

"Our Friends are Killers, Crooks and Torturers"
(October 7, 2001)
Surely the British Prime Minister should know better than to try to simplify such a complex world we live in to that understandable by a third-grader. If not we have a little weekend reading Mr. Blair should be doing, starting in one of his own newspapers which we surely hope, especially now, he can find a few moments to read on a regular basis, The Independent.

History Corrected - U.S. Wanted Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan
(October 6, 2001)
The world believes that there was an invasion of Afghanistan by the Soviet Union on 24 December 1979 and then, in response, the U.S. and Muslim countries rallied to help Afghanistan repel the invaders. Wrong...just as so much of the widely accepted history of the Arab-Israeli conflict and the actual realities of U.S. involvements in the Middle East are wrong because of the manipulation of history by various governments and intelligence agencies -- most especially the U.S. and Israel, the CIA and the Mossad.

(October 6, 2001)
"Could it be that the stygian anger that led to the attacks has its taproot not in American freedom and democracy, but in the US government's record of commitment and support to exactly the opposite things - to military and economic terrorism, insurgency, military dictatorship, religious bigotry and unimaginable genocide (outside America)?"

(October 5, 2001)
The government in Afghanistan, popularly known as The Taliban, has finally taken what could be a significant step. Just hours ago through its official representative in Pakistan the Afghan government has publicly offered to turn Osama bin Laden over...not to the United States, but to another Islamic country.

(October 5, 2001)
"The women in the audience -- academics, union members, mental health workers and advocates for female inmates, embraced her anti-American rhetoric, repeatedly interrupting her with cheers and standing ovations."

(October 5, 2001)
Now we know that a few years ago, when President Bill Clinton was meeting privately one-on-one with the former Prime Minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif, the U.S. "hired" the agents of the infamous Inter-Services Intelligence Agency (ISI) to assassinate Osama bin Laden.

(October 3, 2001)
The United States and Britain yesterday called off military strikes against terrorist targets in Afghanistan at the last minute. Washington officials say today that a severe attack of last-minute cold feet by some key Arab members of the coalition caused President Bush to postpone the operation.

(October 3, 2001)
Osama bin Laden, arch nemesis of America today, is blowback from recent history -- the Gulf war, the permanent stationing of American forces in Arabia, and other American policies in the region, including the deceptive "peace process" fronting for Israel's brutal subjugation of the Palestinians.

(October 3, 2001)
The American Secretary of Defense is rushing to the Middle East, goal #1 to try one more time to "convince" the Saudis that Prince Sultan Airbase and its super-modern regional control center -- just completed in fact during the summer at a cost of many billions -- is needed for the new war.

(October 2, 2001)
"Drafted with a small coterie of loyal aides, mainly civilian political appointees at the Pentagon, the plans argue for open-ended war without constraint either of time or geography and potentially engulfing the entire Middle East and central Asia... The plans put before the President during the past few days involve expanding the war beyond Afghanistan to include similar incursions by special ops forces - followed by air strikes by the bombers they would guide - into Iraq, Syria and the Beqaa Valley area of Lebanon, where the Syrian-backed Hizbollah (Party of God) fighters that harass Israel are based."

(October 2, 2001)
Anyone with an ear tuned to Washington's politicians, lobbyists, and opinion molders can hear it quite loudly and clearly at this point. After taking down Osama bin Laden's al Queda network (said to be in some 50+ countries), after changing the government in Afghanistan, the American-led crusade (now more politely known by Colin Powell's term "campaign") will attempt to march on through the Middle East, next stop Baghdad.

(October 2, 2001)
It took them who intially talked of "crusade" nearly three weeks to figure out that all the "coalition building" wasn't going nearly as well as they keep saying in public and that doing something about all the Israeli oppression and "terrorism" against the essentially imprisoned Palestinian population would be a good idea in the post 11 September world and before the bombs start falling on Muslims here and there.

(October 1, 2001)
The situation is now so tense in Israel in dealing with the "Palestinian Authority" -- which it should be remembered the Israelis themselves created just a few years ago -- that Shimon Peres is getting more and more desperate.

(October 1, 2001)
The Palestinian opposition is usually very weak and confused. Had that not been the case for some time now Yasser Arafat would never have been able to do the things he has done for so long now, especially since the Gulf War; nor would Arafat have have been able to retain power these past few traumatic years, however weakened himself at this point.

(October 1, 2001)
Yes, it will be very interesting to see if and how Noam Chomsky answers the at first blush surprising attacks from Christopher Hitchens, who has now not only endorsed the new war but also at least parts of the "New World Order" that underpins it.

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