United States wars, new book


This video from the USA says about itself:

April 24, 2013

As the Senate holds its first ever public hearing on drones and targeted killings, we turn the second part of our interview with Jeremy Scahill, author of the new book, “Dirty Wars: The World Is A Battlefield.” Scahill charts the expanding covert wars operated by the CIA and JSOC, the Joint Special Operations Command, in countries from Somalia to Pakistan.

“I called it ‘Dirty Wars’ because, particularly in the Obama administration, a lot of people are being led to believe that there is such a thing as a clean war,” Scahill says. He goes on to discuss secret operations in Africa, the targeting of U.S. citizens in Yemen and the key role WikiLeaks played in researching the book. He also reveals imprisoned whistleblower Bradley Manning once tipped him off to a story about the private security company Blackwater. Scahill is the national security correspondent for The Nation magazine and longtime Democracy Now! correspondent. For the past several years, Scahill has been working on the “Dirty Wars” film and book project, which was published on Tuesday. The film, directed by Rick Rowley, will be released in theaters in June.

By Ian Sinclair in Britain:

Dirty wars

Tuesday 21 May 2013

Within days of the September 11 2001 attacks it was clear that the Bush administration would exploit the terrorist attacks to push for war on Afghanistan and Iraq.

What is less well known is the huge transformation that occurred at the heart of the US government in those dark days – the topic of US journalist Jeremy Scahill’s new book Dirty Wars: The World Is A Battlefield.

With the nation in a state of collective hysteria, the neoconservatives led by vice-president Dick Cheney and defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld rewrote the rules of the game, instituting a huge expansion of covert US wars.

Scahill spoke to me in London earlier this month about how covert action, secret prisons, drone strikes and assassination all began to be deployed on an unprecedented scale.

Having reported from Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia and Yemen, the 38-year-old national security correspondent for The Nation magazine is one of the most knowledgeable observers of the so-called “war on terror.”

According to Scahill, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was sidelined after the World Trade Centre attacks, with Cheney and Rumsfeld viewing the CIA “as a worthless, liberal think tank.”

Instead they massively increased the funding and power of the elite Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) – “the most closely guarded secret force in the US national security apparatus,” as Scahill describes it.

Formed in the 1980s and modelled on the British SAS, president Bill Clinton had muzzled the force following its disastrous involvement in the Black Hawk Down episode in Somalia in 1993.

But after the September 11 terror attacks the Bush administration let JSOC “off the leash,” Scahill says.

Or as CIA counter-terrorism centre chief Cofer Black put it: “All you need to know is that there was a before 9/11, and there was an after 9/11. After 9/11 the gloves came off.”

JSOC’s primary role was established during the occupation of Iraq, Scahill says.

“The myth was that ‘the surge’ created this relatively stable couple of years in Iraq” – that US commander General David Petraeus instituted a brilliant counter-insurgency campaign.

However, “everyone in the US military knows this is just a fraudulent portrayal.” Rather “it had everything to do with JSOC creating a kind of Murder, Inc operation where it went down and just killed a tremendous number of people. There was no-one left to kill at one point,” he says bluntly. “JSOC had killed its way through every mom-and-pop resistance operation all the way through to al-Qaida in Mesopotamia.”

This, along with the US paying Sunni tribes, the “awakening councils,” not to kill US soldiers, was what was responsible for the lull in fighting, according to Scahill.

In the run-up to the Iraq war, the public in Britain was often told that one of the reasons Tony Blair was supporting president Bush so closely was that he would be able to influence, and hopefully constrain, US policy.

Scahill laughs when I raise this argument.

“The notion that Blair was going to rein in Bush or Cheney is laughable. If anything Britain was used as a cover by the United States to give legitimacy to the Iraq war.”

In actual fact British forces were “deeply involved” in the assassination campaigns waged by JSOC in Iraq, with British units heading up JSOC operations, he explains.

Scahill is also very critical of President Barack Obama’s record in office – noting how the first black president came under intense pressure from the US military establishment to massively expand the covert wars in Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen.

“And elsewhere – they were asking for authority in the Philippines and Indonesia and certain cases in Latin America, they wanted covert action inside Iran,” he notes.

Enamoured by the generals and admirals, the Obama administration caved in and “start hitting in Pakistan at three or four times the rate Bush was authorising.” Similar upswings in drone strikes, and the inevitable civilian casualties, occurred in Yemen and Somalia.

“Obama was trying to find a way to continue some of these policies by simply tweaking them, or adjusting them in a small way,” Scahill says.

“He ended extraordinary rendition by the CIA and closed CIA black sites. Instead what he is doing is working with human rights-abusing forces around the world to do it for the United States.

“So it’s by proxy now.”

More broadly, Scahill believes “Obama has tried to find a way to legitimise the core of the Bush-Cheney programme while defending the system itself from attack both internally and externally. And it’s been pitched that this is a cleaner, more legal way of waging war.”

Has it worked?

“I think he has largely been effective in selling that idea to liberals.”

Scahill isn’t a pacifist – he believes in the right of the state to defend itself.

But US policy “is just self-defeating.

“My fear is that we are actually creating more new enemies than we are killing terrorists,” he says.

“What’s our security going to look like 10 years from now as a result of killing innocent people in Yemen, Somalia and Pakistan?

“If you and I sit down a decade from now I’m sure we will be talking about attacks that took place as a result of policy implemented right now.”

A key reason so many US citizens either actively support or are ignorant about these damaging actions is arguably the media’s inability to hold the US government to account since the 2001 attacks.

“I don’t believe there is a conspiracy with fat white guys smoking cigars in a back room and deciding how they are going to screw the little people,” Scahill says. “It’s unnecessary.

“Powerful people in government are close friends with powerful people in the media.

“They are part of the same class of people. They hang out together at weekends. They have their little parties like the White House Correspondents’ Dinner where the president jokes about drones and the powerful media barons chuckle at his jokes, and their kids go to the same elite private schools.”

Scahill also argues that in the US “the default position is that power is right, that power is telling the truth, that the powerful are to be trusted.

“I think the opposite should be true – that you should always assume that what they are saying is manipulative,” he counters. “You have to be sceptical as a journalist.”

As Amy Goodman, his former colleague at news programme Democracy Now!, once said: “The role of journalism is to go where the silences are.”

By shining a light on the darkest parts of US foreign policy, Dirty Wars is a brilliant example of this noble aim.

With a senior US defence official recently testifying that the “war on terror” will continue for another 10 to 20 years, muck-raking, investigative journalists like Scahill are needed now more than ever.

Dirty Wars: The World is a Battlefield is published by Serpant’s Tail, priced £15.99. A documentary based on the book will be released later this year. For more information see www.dirtywars.org.

Dirty Wars, directed by Richard Rowley, is a documentary that follows investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill into the murderous, covert world of American Special Forces as the latter prosecute the US government’s so-called global war on terror: here.

Dying US Iraq veteran’s letter to Bush and Cheney


This video from the USA is called Ten Years Later, U.S. Has Left Iraq With Mass Displacement & Epidemic of Birth Defects, Cancers.

By David Walsh in the USA:

Dying US army veteran denounces “illegal” Iraq War

22 March 2013

Iraq War veteran Tomas Young, currently under hospice care at his home in Kansas City, Missouri, has written a scathing “last letter,” published at Truthdig.com, addressed to former President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.

Young, the subject of the 2007 documentary film Body of War , explains that he is writing his letter “on the 10th anniversary of the Iraq War on behalf of my fellow Iraq War veterans. I write this letter on behalf of the 4,488 soldiers and Marines who died in Iraq. I write this letter on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of veterans who have been wounded and on behalf of those whose wounds, physical and psychological, have destroyed their lives. I am one of those gravely wounded. I was paralyzed in an insurgent ambush in 2004 in Sadr City. My life is coming to an end.”

Young goes on: “I write this letter on behalf of those veterans whose trauma and self-revulsion for what they have witnessed, endured and done in Iraq have led to suicide and on behalf of the active-duty soldiers and Marines who commit, on average, a suicide a day. I write this letter on behalf of the some 1 million Iraqi dead and on behalf of the countless Iraqi wounded. I write this letter on behalf of us all—the human detritus your war has left behind, those who will spend their lives in unending pain and grief.”

Tomas Young visits Ground Zero

Body of War (2007): Tomas Young visits Ground Zero [Credit: Ellen Spiro / Mobilus Media]

Addressing Bush and Cheney, Young writes: “I write not because I think you grasp the terrible human and moral consequences of your lies, manipulation and thirst for wealth and power. I write this letter because, before my own death, I want to make it clear that I, and hundreds of thousands of my fellow veterans, along with millions of my fellow citizens, along with hundreds of millions more in Iraq and the Middle East, know fully who you are and what you have done.”

Body of War, co-directed by Phil Donahue and Ellen Spiro, recounted Young’s story, his horrendous medical condition and his ongoing opposition to the Iraq War. Young enlisted in the US Army after the September 11, 2001 attacks, because, as he explains in his recent letter, “our country had been attacked.”

Gold Star Mothers who have lost children in the Iraq War touch Tomas Young at a Washington DC peace march

Body of War (2007): Gold Star Mothers who have lost children in the Iraq War touch Tomas Young at a Washington DC peace march [Credit: Ellen Spiro / Mobilus Media]

Only five days into his first deployment in Iraq in April 2004, while riding in a Humvee in Baghdad’s Sadr City, the young soldier was shot by an insurgent from above. The bullet severed Young’s spinal column. At the time of the making of Body of War, as the WSWS reported, he was “not only confined to a wheelchair but suffers severe attendant disabilities, including an inability to cough, trouble regulating his body temperature, dizzy spells, urinary tract infections and sexual dysfunction.”

After an anoxic brain injury in 2008, Young, now 33, explained to Truthdig’s Chris Hedges, “I lost a lot of dexterity and strength in my upper body. So I wouldn’t be able to shoot myself or even open the pill bottle to give myself an overdose.” He told Hedges, “I felt at the end of my rope … I made the decision to go on hospice care, to stop feeding and fade away.”

The Donahue-Spiro documentary included a number of moving sequences of Young participating in anti-war activities where he encountered other disabled veterans, as well as family members of soldiers who had died in Iraq. In August 2005, along with his wife at the time, Young traveled to Camp Casey, Cindy Sheehan’s protest encampment outside George W. Bush’s ranch in Crawford, Texas. …

“I did not join the Army to ‘liberate’ Iraqis or to shut down mythical weapons-of-mass-destruction facilities or to implant what you cynically called ‘democracy’ in Baghdad and the Middle East. I did not join the Army to rebuild Iraq, which at the time you told us could be paid for by Iraq’s oil revenues. Instead, this war has cost the United States over $3 trillion. I especially did not join the Army to carry out pre-emptive war. Pre-emptive war is illegal under international law. And as a soldier in Iraq I was, I now know, abetting your idiocy and your crimes.”

Young describes his body “filled with painkillers, my life ebbing away,” dealing with the fact “that hundreds of thousands of human beings, including children, including myself, were sacrificed by you for little more than the greed of oil companies, for your alliance with the oil sheiks in Saudi Arabia, and your insane visions of empire.”

Toward the end of his letter, Young writes, “I have, like many other disabled veterans, suffered from the inadequate and often inept care provided by the Veterans Administration. I have, like many other disabled veterans, come to realize that our mental and physical wounds are of no interest to you, perhaps of no interest to any politician. We were used. We were betrayed. And we have been abandoned. … My day of reckoning is upon me. Yours will come. I hope you will be put on trial.”

Young’s letter and condition speak to the appalling tragedy of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, the waste and destruction of hundreds of thousands—perhaps millions—of lives, all sacrificed in the pursuit of US imperialist dominance of the globe.

George W Bush, the man held responsible by millions around the world for ordering the US invasion of Iraq, reportedly charged a charity $100,000 to speak at a fund-raising event for military veterans: here.

KBR poisons soldiers, taxpayers paying


This video from the USA says about itself:

Jan 9, 2009

Vice President Dick Cheney is asked about how former Halliburton subsidiary KBR knowingly exposed members of Indiana’s National Guard to cancer causing chemicals at a water treatment plant in Iraq.

Sign IAVA’s petition here–

http://www.iava.org

Read more about it here–

http://thinkprogress.org/2008/12/23/kbr-indiana-chemical/

From the blog of Ryan J. Reilly in the USA:

KBR, Guilty In Iraq Negligence, Wants Taxpayers To Foot The Bill

Posted: 01/09/2013 9:37 am EST

WASHINGTON — Sodium dichromate is an orange-yellowish substance containing hexavalent chromium, an anti-corrosion chemical. To Lt. Col. James Gentry of the Indiana National Guard, who was stationed at the Qarmat Ali water treatment center in Iraq just after the 2003 U.S. invasion, it was “just different-colored sand.” In their first few months at the base, soldiers were told by KBR contractors running the facility the substance was no worse than a mild irritant.

Gentry was one of approximately 830 service members, including active-duty soldiers and members of the National Guard and reserve units from Indiana, South Carolina, West Virginia and Oregon, assigned to secure the water treatment plant, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Sodium dichromate is not a mild irritant. It is an extreme carcinogen. In November 2009, at age 52, Gentry died of cancer. The VA affirmed two months later that his death was service-related.

In November, a jury found KBR, the military’s largest contractor, guilty of negligence in the poisoning of a dozen soldiers, and ordered the company to pay $85 million in damages. Jurors found KBR knew both of the presence and toxicity of the chemical. Other lawsuits against KBR are pending.

KBR, however, says taxpayers should be on the hook for the verdict, as well as more than $15 million the company has spent in its failed legal defense, according to court documents and attorneys involved with the case.

KBR’s contract with the U.S. to rebuild Iraq’s oil infrastructure after the 2003 invasion includes an indemnity agreement protecting the company from legal liability, KBR claims in court filings. That agreement, KBR insists, means the federal government must pay the company’s legal expenses plus the verdict won by 12 members of the Oregon National Guard who were exposed to the toxin at the Qarmat Ali water treatment plant.

The military disagrees. A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers contracting officer told KBR in November 2011 that litigation costs “are not covered by the indemnity agreement.”

The public doesn’t know what the indemnity agreement actually says because the military considers it classified. Until recently, the veterans exposed to the toxin couldn’t know either, nor could attorneys at the Department of Justice, who were left battling the contract in the dark, according to a source there.

Michael Doyle, a Houston-based lawyer who helped the successful suit against KBR, told The Huffington Post the military declassified the indemnification agreement on Dec. 21 and gave it to him under a protective order that banned him from sharing the language to parties not involved in the case. John A. Elolf, a spokesman for KBR, confirmed the declassification of the agreement and said the contractor also was prevented from providing a copy. HuffPost has requested the document under the Freedom of Information Act from the Corps of Engineers.

Doyle said the agreement may mean a taxpayer “bailout” for KBR. “It’s basically saying that no matter if we’re guilty of — willful misconduct, poisoning soldiers — taxpayers have to pay to cover us as well as whatever we decide to pay on lawyers at whatever rates and all these fees,” Doyle said. “That’s a pretty good bailout.”

It’s unclear how many defense contractors have secret indemnification agreements with the military. Under the law, most government agencies are banned from entering open-ended indemnification agreements, but the Pentagon and a handful of other agencies were exempted in an executive order signed by President Richard Nixon in 1971.

KBR originally claimed it didn’t know about the deadly toxin until the spring of 2003. Documents produced in the lawsuit, however, revealed that KBR knew the chemical was being stockpiled and used in massive quantities at the water treatment facility as early as January of that year. Prior to the U.S. invasion, Iraqi workers would treat water at the plant with sodium dichromate before injecting it under pressure into the ground, driving oil to the surface. Sodium dichromate helped increase the life of pipelines and pumps by preventing corrosion.

Soldiers assigned to guard the facility said the chemical dust came from bags stacked both inside and outside the plant, which some soldiers would sit on or use for protection from the wind. Wind spread the orange powder from the thousands of 100-pound bags. Gentry estimated the dust covered about half the plant’s area.

“There were soldiers that actually brought it up, asked what it was, and they were told it was a mild irritant at first,” Rocky Bixby, 45, a plaintiff in the Oregon National Guard suit that bears his name, told HuffPost.

“They had this information and didn’t share it,” Gentry said in a deposition two days before his final Christmas, in 2008. “I’m dying now because of it.”

Another soldier, Larry Roberta, now 48, was exposed to the chemical after a gust of wind blew it into his eye and into a chicken patty he was eating. After washing his face and mouth, he tried washing the chicken, because it was the only food he had left for the day. “It tastes like a mouthful of nickels,” Roberta said. “I just kept washing my mouth and I couldn’t get that taste out.”

Roberta said he now requires an oxygen tank because he has less than 60 percent of his lung function and gets migraines stemming from the eye that was exposed to the chemical. He had surgery to fix the muscle at the top of his stomach that prevented food from coming back up. “I can’t throw up, I can’t even burp,” Roberta said. “You know, when you can’t burp, the air has to come out the other end, which makes me the stinky dog that nobody wants to let in the house.”

Roberta said he doesn’t think U.S. taxpayers should have to pay for KBR’s mistakes.

“The United States Army Corps of Engineers is not in the business of restoring oilfields, therefore they hired KBR as their subject expert,” Roberta said. “KBR was paid a good sum of money to do a job and unfortunately it didn’t get done well. … The end results were okay, but they made some mistakes along the way.”

Gentry’s wife said the “bailout” fits a KBR pattern.

“Whether it’s morally, ethically or even fiscally, there was no accountability then and there is no accountability now,” LouAnn Grube Gentry told The Huffington Post. “In fact, they continue their negligence and indifference. And just as an example of that is they continue to overbill the government for the legal fees. And to me that in itself proves that they are profit-mongering and their sole motivation is profit.”

Gentry said her husband initially declined to get involved in the litigation because of his loyalty to the National Guard and the Army. Gentry even praised KBR’s work during his second tour in Iraq, calling company safety measures “top grade” during a deposition. He decided to join the litigation late in his life because he felt KBR was being dishonest about what it knew about the chemical.

“Once KBR denied accountability, denied knowing, my husband became very angry,” Gentry said.

A federal jury in Oregon found on Nov. 2 that KBR negligently exposed troops to the toxic dust and ordered the company to pay $85 million in noneconomic and punitive damages to the Oregon National Guard members. A separate suit against KBR on behalf of national guardsmen from both Indiana and West Virginia, as well as troops from the U.K., is pending in federal court in Houston. That case awaits a decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals on whether the case can proceed with claims based on wartime activity.

Bixby, who said he was at the water treatment plant for as many as five days, said it makes no sense for taxpayers to pick up the bill for KBR’s mistakes.

“I think it’s fraudulent and I think it’s criminal on their part to do this,” Bixby told HuffPost.

Secret indemnity agreements shouldn’t be a problem in the future, because of a provision in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013 pushed by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.). The act requires the Pentagon to disclose indemnification clauses that hold military contractors harmless and to justify the agreements to Congress.

“What KBR received — and Oregon soldiers and the American taxpayers may be stuck paying for — is a get out of jail free card that no one outside of the Pentagon had any say in giving them,” Wyden said in a statement last month. “Thanks to that plum deal, KBR could be let off the hook after negligently exposing Oregon servicemembers to toxic chemicals. Some indemnification agreements are justified, but many are not, and the Pentagon should have to justify these agreements to Congress.”

Report: US troops exposed to chemical agents in Iraq are dying — and the Pentagon is covering it up: here.

Bush administration knew Iraq had no WMD’s


This video from the USA says about itself:

Tyler Drumheller, now-retired CIA officer, appears on 60 Minutes to talk about the Bush Administration’s phony, manufactured “intelligence” that they used as the justification to invade Iraq.

Treason, anyone?

From daily News Line in Britain:

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Bush, Cheney and Rice were personally told that Iraq had no WMDs

THE US ThinkProgress website has published the text of the ‘60 Minutes’ TV interview with former CIA official Tyler Drumheller who revealed that in October 2002 a very highly placed Iraqi government official revealed that Iraq had no wmds and that Bush, Cheney, and Rice were personally told this information.

In October 2002, the CIA had made, what it termed, a major intelligence breakthrough on Iraq’s nuclear programme.

Naji Sabri, Iraq’s foreign minister made an agreement to reveal Iraq’s military secrets to the CIA. Tyler Drumheller was in charge of the operation and was questioned on ‘60 Minutes’ by Ed Bradley.

The transcript shows that Drumheller said: ‘This was a very high inner circle of Saddam Hussein, someone who would know what he was talking about.’

Bradley: You knew you could trust this guy?’

Drumheller: We continued to validate him the whole way through.

Bradley: According to Drumheller, CIA Director George Tenet delivered the news about the Iraqi foreign minister at a high level meeting at the White House.

Drumheller: The President, the Vice President, Dr. Rice.

Bradley: And at that meeting?

Drumheller: They were enthusiastic because they said they were excited that we had a high-level penetration of Iraqis.

Bradley: And what did this high level source tell you?

Drumheller: He told us that they had no active weapons of mass destruction programme.

Bradley: So, in the fall of 2002, before going to war, we had it on good authority from a source within Saddam’s inner circle that he didn’t have an active programme for weapons of mass destruction?

Drumheller: Yes.

Bradley: There’s no doubt in your mind about that?

Drumheller: No doubt in my mind at all.

Bradley: It directly contradicts, though, what the President and his staff were telling us.

Drumheller: The policy was set. The war in Iraq was coming, and they were looking for intelligence to fit into the policy, to justify the policy.

Bradley: Drumheller expected the White House to ask for more information from the Iraqi foreign minister. He was taken aback by what happened.

Drumheller: The group that was dealing with preparations for the Iraq war came back and said they’re no longer interested. And we said, Well, what about the intel? And they said, Well, this isn’t about intel anymore. This is about regime change.

Bradley: And if I understand you correctly, when the White House learned that you had this source from the inner circle of Saddam Hussein, they were thrilled with that.

Drumheller: The first we heard, they were. Yes.

Bradley: But when they learned what it was that he had to say, that Saddam did not have the capability to wage nuclear war, weapons of mass destruction?

Drumheller: They stopped being interested in the intelligence.

Bradley: The White House declined to respond to Drumheller’s account of Naji Sabri’ s role, but Secretary of State Rice has said that Sabri, the Iraqi foreign minister-turned-US spy, was just one source, and therefore his information wasn’t reliable.

Drumheller: They certainly took information that came from single sources on uranium, on the yellowcake story and on several other stories that had no corroboration at all, and so you can’t say you only listen to one source, because on many issues they only listened to one source.

Bradley: So you’re saying that if there was a single source and that information from that source backed up the case they were trying to build, then that single source was okay, but if it didn’t, then the single source was not okay because he couldn’t be corroborated.

Drumheller: Unfortunately, that’s what it looks like.

Recently Mike Barker made a Freedom of Information request to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office [in Britain] in relation to two letters written by Sabri.

Dated 2 September 2012 it asked to ‘Please confirm these extracts from two letters from Dr Naji Sabri, Minister for Foreign Affairs under President Saddam Hussein, sent to Kofi Annan Secretary General to the UN.

‘Letter dated 11 June 2002 from the Permanent Representative of Iraq to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General.

‘On instructions from my Government, I have the honour to transmit to you, enclosed herewith, a letter dated 11 June 2002 from Mr Naji Sabri, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Iraq, concerning threats by the United States of America to use its nuclear capability against a number of States, including Iraq.

‘I should be grateful if you would have this letter and its annex circulated as a document of the Security Council.

‘(Signed) Mohammed A. Aldouri.’

The letter stated: ‘Secretary-General

‘On 10 March 2002 United States newspapers leaked information on a confidential report by the United States Department of Defense (the Pentagon) entitled “Re-evaluation of the nuclear situation”, in which it is stated that the Administration of President George W Bush had ordered the Department of Defense to prepare contingency plans for the use of nuclear weapons against China, Iraq, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the Russian Federation and the Syrian Arab Republic, and that the Department of Defense had submitted the report to the Senate on 8 January 2002. Later, senior United States Administration officials confirmed the information in the report
‘(Signed) Naji Sabri’

The second letter stated: ‘Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Iraq’

September 16, 2002.’

‘Mr. Kofi Annan,

‘The Secretary General of the United Nations

‘Dear Secretary-General, held in your office in New York on 14 and 15 September 2002, with the participation of the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States. . .

‘I am pleased to inform you of the decision of the Government of the Republic of Iraq to allow the return of the United Nations weapons inspectors to Iraq without conditions.

‘The Government of the Republic of Iraq has responded, by this decision, to your appeal, to the appeal of the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, as well as those of Arab, Islamic and other friendly countries.

‘The Government of the Republic of Iraq has based its decision concerning the return of inspectors on its desire to complete the implementation of the relevant Security Council resolutions and to remove any doubts that Iraq still possesses weapons of mass destruction…

‘This decision is also based on your statement to the General Assembly on 12 September 2002 that the decision by the Government of the Republic of Iraq is the indispensable first step towards an assurance that Iraq no longer possesses weapons of mass destruction and, equally importantly, towards a comprehensive solution that includes the lifting of the sanctions imposed on Iraq and the timely implementation of other provisions of the relevant Security Council resolutions, including resolution 687(1991).

‘To this end, the Government of the Republic of Iraq is ready to discuss the practical arrangements necessary for the immediate resumption of inspections.

‘In this context, the Government of the Republic of Iraq reiterates the importance of the commitment of all Member States of the Security Council and the United Nations to respect the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of Iraq, as stipulated in the relevant Security Council resolutions and article (II) of the Charter of the United Nations.

‘I would be grateful if you bring this letter to the attention of the Security Council members.

‘Please accept, Mr Secretary-General the assurances of my highest consideration.

‘Dr Naji Sabri

‘Minister of Foreign Affairs

‘Republic of Iraq’

While Iraq wanted peace, the US and the UK were determined to go to war and commenced the destruction of Iraq and its infrastructure shortly afterwards, killing hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and turning millions into refugees.

Cheney to jail for Nigeria corruption?


This video from the USA is called Halliburton provided contaminated water to soldiers.

From AFP news agency:

Interpol Arrest Warrant for Dick Cheney? Nigeria to Charge Former VP in Bribery Scandal

Nigerian authorities plan to charge ex-US vice president Dick Cheney in connection with a bribery scandal allegedly involving energy firm Halliburton, a spokesman for the anti-graft agency said Thursday.

Asked whether Cheney would be charged over the investigation into construction of a liquefied natural gas plant in southern Nigeria, Femi Babafemi said, “it’s true … definitely.”

The spokesman could not give details on the charges that he says are likely to be filed next week, but said “they are not unconnected to his role as the chief executive of Halliburton.”

A prosecutor on the case said Cheney would be charged jointly along with the former and current leadership of Halliburton and others.

Officials from companies in a consortium involved in the LNG plant would also be included in the charges to be “placed before the court at the latest by Tuesday of next week,” said Godwin Obla.

Cheney would face conspiracy charges and a Nigerian judge would be asked to issue an arrest warrant for him that would be transmitted to Interpol, said Obla.

“As the CEO of Halliburton, he has the responsibility for acts that occurred during that period,” Obla told AFP.

Nigeria’s Guardian newspaper also reported that Cheney would be charged. Halliburton‘s office in Lagos would not comment when reached by phone.

Cheney served as head of Halliburton before becoming vice president under George W. Bush in 2000.

The LNG case involves an alleged 182 million dollar cash-for-contract scandal over 10 years until 2005 over construction of the LNG plant in southern Nigeria. Halliburton has denied involvement in the allegations.

US authorities said last year that Halliburton and its former subsidiary Kellogg Brown and Root (KBR) had agreed to pay 579 million dollars in fines related to the case.

It was one of the biggest fines ever paid by US companies in a foreign corruption case.

In October, a Nigerian court charged a personal aide to ex-president Olusegun Obasanjo in a related probe.

Earlier this week, Nigerian anti-corruption authorities summoned a top local official from Halliburton as part of the investigation.

Authorities also raided Halliburton’s office in Lagos last week and detained 10 people — eight Nigerians and two expatriates — who have since been released as investigations continue. Documents were taken as well.

Nigeria is one of the world’s largest oil producers, but corruption remains deeply entrenched. Non-governmental organisations consistently rank the country as one of the world’s most corrupt.

Babafemi’s agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, was established to probe corruption allegations and has carried out a series of high-profile prosecutions.

Cheney was one of the United States’ most powerful and controversial vice presidents, as well as a driving force behind Bush’s “war on terror.”

He has struggled with a series of health problems related to heart ailments.

Posted at December 2, 2010, 8:47 am

See also here.

Dick Cheney CHARGED by Nigeria over bribery case: here.

Nigeria Plans to Charge Dick Cheney in $180M Bribery Case for Bribes When He Was Halliburton CEO. NEWS: here.

Charges Filed in Nigeria Against Dick Cheney & Halliburton in $180M Bribery Investigation: here.

Dick Cheney Urged George W. Bush to Bomb Syria: here.

Jason Leopold, Truthout: “Former President George H.W. Bush and ex-Secretary of State James Baker were part of a negotiating team that convinced Nigerian government officials to drop bribery charges against Dick Cheney and Halliburton, the oil services firm he led prior to becoming vice president, according to Nigerian news reports. Bush and Baker reportedly participated in conference call discussions with senior Nigerian government officials, including the country’s attorney general, Mohammed Adoke, last weekend on behalf of Cheney in an attempt to work out a settlement. Halliburton executives also participated in the talks”: here.

Halliburton Offers Nigeria $250 Million in Exchange for Dropping Charges Against Cheney, Company: here.

“A Little Blood for a lot of Oil” (but Halliburton profited well): here.

USA: Former Halliburton employee Lynda Darden is suing the company for sex discrimination and wrongful termination. Court filings allege that she was fired because “she apparently violated the company’s policy against procreation”: here.

Film: Gasland exposes the latest Halliburton horror that poses a threat to homeland security from those enemies within that’s far more frightening than any disaster dreamed up in Hollywood.

NEWS: Oil & Gas Industry Denounce Academy Award-Nominated Documentary Gasland: here.

Halliburton & other fracking companies may have violated safe drinking water act: here.

ANTI-CORRUPTION campaigners claimed on Wednesday that a leaked US document reveals the true extent of Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell’s infiltration of the Nigerian government: here.

Oceans of blood and profits for the mongers of war: here.

William Rivers Pitt, Truthout: “It is axiomatic by now: when someone leaves government service, especially a high-profile position, they write a book…. Speaking of damaging the republic, Dick Cheney has a book out. I’m sure you’ve heard about it by now; he laid the groundwork for its release by claiming the contents would cause heads to explode in Washington, causing everyone to say ‘Ooooh, this should be good.’ It isn’t, at all, but I must confess that my head did come very close to launching itself off my shoulders … not because of what’s in the book, but because I have to deal with the rancid reality of a free and unconvicted Dick Cheney appearing in the public eye once again. If there were any justice to be found in this deranged country, Dick Cheney would have penned his pestiferous, self-serving little memoir by the light of a bare bulb inside the cell of a federal prison”: here.

Dick Cheney really should be facing a war crimes tribunal: here.

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More Dick Cheney-Halliburton rape in Iraq


This April 2008 video from the USA is called Women come forward about being raped by KBR in Iraq-1/4.

More news on Halliburton, the corporation of George W. Bush’s vice president, Dick Cheney.

From ThinkProgress in the USA:

Another KBR Employee Says She Was Raped While Working for the Military Contractor in Iraq

Saturday 05 June 2010

by: Matt Corley | ThinkProgress

In 2007, former Halliburton/KBR employee Jamie Leigh Jones revealed that she had been gang-raped by her co-workers while working in Baghdad, and then left by the company in a “shipping container for at least 24 hours without food or water.” Jones sued the company and won. KBR has petitioned the Supreme Court to reverse the ruling. Since Jones went public, several more female KBR employees have come forward with allegations of rape. ABC News reports today that “another female ex-employee of KBR has come forward to claim that she was raped while working for the military contracting company in Iraq”:

“According to a lawsuit filed in federal court in Houston Wednesday, Anna Mayo was working at KBR’s facility in Balad in November 2009 when she was assaulted by an unnamed rapist who worked for KBR. She charges that she was choked unconscious with a rope, beaten and raped. The suit seeks damages from KBR and from KBR subsidiary Service Employees International Inc., the contractor that employed Mayo from 2008 to 2009”.

KBR Only Contractor Granted Legal Immunity From Harming Soldiers And Civilians: Army Secretary McHugh: here.

Self-Dealing and the War Service Industry: KBR Held the Government Hostage. Dina Rasor, Truthout in the USA: “This is the first part of a three-part series that will show self-dealing by leaders in the Army, who arranged for this favorable treatment of KBR, at the time a subsidiary of Halliburton. We will lead you through the actions and the consequences of these actions and the effects on the troops and the Army budget”: here.

1 in 10 Soldiers Who Fought In Iraq May Be Mentally Ill: here.

Rand Paul says Dick Cheney pushed for the Iraq War so Halliburton would profit: here.

WASHINGTON – A top US Army procurement official said Halliburton’s deals in Iraq were the worst example of contract abuse she had seen as Pentagon auditors flagged over US$1 billion ($1.42 billion) of potential overcharges by the Texas-based firm: here.

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Dick Cheney’s corporation accused of Iraq fraud


This video from the USA is called Jamie Leigh JonesKBR Gang Rape ABC 20/20 Report.

From British daily The Morning Star:

Washington takes on its Iraq mercenaries

Friday 02 April 2010

The US government turned on its mercenaries in Iraq on Thursday and sued the largest “contractor” in Iraq over improper charges for private security.

Houston-based KBR Inc is a former subsidiary of Halliburton.

the corporation of Dick Cheney, George W Bush’s vice president

It recently won a new contract worth more than £1.3 billion for support work in Iraq.

The lawsuit charged that KBR and 33 of its subcontractors used private armed security from 2003 to 2006.

It alleged that KBR knew that the company could not bill the US government for such services, but did so anyway.

The case poses the question of what authority private contractors had to carry weapons and use force.

KBR reported 2009 revenues of £3.2bn from government contracts to provide logistical support, such as food services, transport, laundry and mail for US forces in Iraq, but security was to be provided by the military.

The government says KBR broke the contract by failing to get army authorisation to arm subcontractors and using unregistered private security contractors.

KBR’s “Facts” About Rape Case Are No Such Thing: here.

Dick Cheney’s gang rapists in Iraq


This video from the USA is about Jamie Leigh Jones‘ – KBR gang rape. It says about itself:

Jamie Leigh Jones remarks on mandatory arbitration

29 April 2009

Jamie Leigh Jones, of Houston, Texas, was raped by co-workers while working for a Halliburton subsidiary in Iraq. Her company said she couldnt go to court because the employment agreement she signed required her claims to be settled through arbitration.

U.S. Senator Russ Feingold reintroduced legislation to protect the right of Americans to have their day in court. The bill would make pre-dispute agreements requiring arbitration for any employment, consumer, franchise, or civil rights disputes unenforceable.

From Mother Jones in the USA:

Halliburton Loses to Jamie Leigh Jones

— By Stephanie Mencimer | Wed September 16, 2009 6:34 AM PST

Remember Jamie Leigh Jones, the Halliburton/KBR contractor who alleged she was gang raped by her co-workers in Iraq? When Halliburton failed to take any action against the men and the Justice Department failed to prosecute, Jones tried to sue the company for failing to protect her. But thanks to an employment contract created during the tenure of former Halliburton CEO Dick Cheney, Jones was forced into mandatory binding arbitration, a private forum where Halliburton would hire the arbitrator, all the proceedings would be secret, and she’d have no right to appeal if she lost.

Jones fought the agreement in the hopes of bringing her case before a jury. She argued that the alleged gang rape was not related to her employment and thus, wasn’t covered by the arbitration agreement. Finally, three years later, a federal court has sensibly agreed with her. Yesterday, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, in a 2 to 1 ruling, found her alleged injuries were not, in fact, in any way related to her employment and thus, not covered by the contract. (One of the judges who ruled in her favor, Rhesa Hawkins Barksdale, is a West Point grad, Vietnam vet, and one of the court’s most conservative members, a sign, perhaps, of just how bad the facts are in this case.)

It’s a big victory, but a bitter one that shows just how insidious mandatory arbitration is. It’s taken Jones three years of litigation just to get to the point where she can finally sue the people who allegedly wronged her. It will be many more years before she finally wins any real justice.

It is stunning that 30 Republican members of the United States Senate would vote to protect a corporation, in this case Halliburton/KBR, over a woman who was gang raped: here.

Plight of Contractor Raped in Iraq Spurs Push in Congress: here.

Stewart: GOP protects Halliburton’s ‘it’s okay if you get raped’ clause: here.

Cindy Beringer reports on the struggles of Fort Hood soldiers who have stood up to resist the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan: here.

Vice President Biden visited Iraq to uphold the US occupation and push for a law to open up the country’s oil wealth to exploitation: here.

Solidarity with Iraqi trade unions: here.

The US Army has abandoned its three-year effort to punish First Lt. Ehren Watada for refusing to deploy to Iraq, allowing him to resign from the military on October 2: here.

Cheney as Nosferatu, cartoon here.

KBR could face penalties, Pentagon auditors warn: here.

Argentine torture general sentenced


This video from Democracy Now! in the USA includes Bone Fragments Discovered at Argentine Torture Site.

From Big News Network:

86 year old Argentine general gets life in prison

Friday 28th August, 2009

A former general who ran a detention centre during Argentina’s military dictatorship has been sentenced to life in prison for human rights violations.

Santiago Omar Riveros was commander of the notorious Campo de Mayo prison near Buenos Aires where an estimated 5,000 prisoners were held during the 1976-83 dictatorship.

Santiago Omar Riveros was found guilty this week of torturing and beating to death Floreal Avellaneda, a 15 year old boy, and of abducting his mother Iris.

The two were abducted one month after the 1976 military coup, in order to find out the whereabouts of Floreal Avellaneda’s father, a Communist Party union leader of the same name.

Iris was released after nearly three years of detention and torture; her son’s body was found washed up on the Uruguayan coast, bound by the hands and feet, and with signs of beating.

“This sentence is an important achievement in the fight for justice for the victims of Argentina’s ‘dirty war’ and the struggle against impunity enjoyed by so many of the perpetrators,” said Javier Zuniga, Amnesty International’s special adviser.

The teenager’s father said he was satisfied with the verdict, but called for Santiago Omar Riveros to receive no clemency.”The sentence must be served in a common prison. Even if he dies in prison, he will never suffer what we suffered,” he said.

The former general, who is now 86, is accused of more than 40 crimes against humanity involving victims of the era’s so-called “disappeared”. During the years of military rule, headed by General Leopoldo Galtieri, around 30,000 people vanished at the hands of the security forces and are still unaccounted for.

See also here.

So justice at last, 33 years after the crimes.

I hope that we will not have to wait for 33 years before those guilty of recent torture policies in the USA (like Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld) will have to stand trial.

Bloggers accuse Washington Post of aiding, abetting Cheney: here.

In an interview Sunday, former vice president Dick Cheney defended the brutal interrogations carried out at CIA secret prisons and denounced the proposed investigation of a handful of CIA agents: here.

In the spring of 2003, long before Abu Ghraib or secret prisons became part of the American vocabulary, a pair of recently hired lawyers at the American Civil Liberties Union noticed a handful of news reports about allegations of abuse of prisoners in American custody: here.

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Cheney’s hunting and other disasters


This 2016 video from the USA says about itself:

Dick Cheney Shot A Texas Lawyer 10 Years Ago. Still No Apology

Dick Cheney never apologized for shooting his pal after the 2006 hunting accident.

From BuzzFlash in the USA:

Lawyer Shot by Cheney While Hunting Still Has Shotgun Pellets in Jaw and Gums

Submitted by BuzzFlash on Sun, 07/19/2009 – 12:51pm.

BUZZFLASH NEWS ALERT

Dick Cheney is the disaster that keeps on giving.

From a failure to heed warnings about a possible 9/11, to a disastrous war in Iraq, to torture, to breaking the law, to PlameGate…oh so much evil; even shooting a friend in the face who covered for Dick, after Cheney left him bleeding and Dick had a stiff drink.

Well, of all places to discover the current state of the shot attorney, Harry Whittington, it was quite a surprise to see an update in Walter Scott’s Republican leaning “Personality Parade” in the Sunday newspaper supplement, “Parade”:

“Q Did Harry Whittington, the lawyer whom former Vice President Cheney accidentally shot while hunting quail in Texas, recover fully from his wounds?—J.D. Stewart, San Diego, Calif.

A “It took a while, and I still have a lot of metal in me—30 or so pellets, some in my jaw and gums,” Whittington tells us. “But that was three years ago in February, and these days I’m at the gym by 6 a.m. and at my office by 8:30. At 82, I’m still a lawyer and still giving thanks for every day of my life.””

It appears that so many have taken a bullet for Dick, including his daughter Liz (who knows far more about Cheney’s actions than she lets on.)

But Harry Whittington, he took a direct hit from Cheney and still has metal in his body to prove it.

Now, that’s truly a guy who knows how to literally take a bullet for the Dick.

Memoirs to reveal Dick Cheney thought Bush had gone soft on war on terror: here.

Reversing the decline of Texas quails: here.