|Nabucco consortium postponed the start of construction of its pipeline for 2013 and the beginning of deliveries of gas on it – in 2017 This was during a conference call said the managing director of Nabucco Gas Pipeline International Reinhard Mitschek .”Given the timing of production in Central Asia and the Middle East, the Nabucco consortium has changed the timing of the project. Construction of the pipeline is expected in 2013, and the beginning of deliveries to him – in 2017 “, – said R. Mitchek.|
|Previously reported that the Nabucco pipeline is scheduled for 2012 and first deliveries for will begin in 2015, reports Trend. According to R. Mitschek, Nabucco itself is a “pretty advanced project and its realization could b s start earlier, but the more rational is to synchronize the start date of its implementation with the project activities of all those involved in the investment chain of parties.”
According to unofficial information, the estimated cost of the Nabucco gas pipeline has increased from 7.9 billion euros to 12-15 billion euros. It was also reported that a final investment decision on the pipeline may be delayed until 2012 due to rising costs and unresolved issue of gas supplies. Previously, it was transferred in 2011 due to protracted negotiations with the supply of gas from Azerbaijan.
Participants in the Nabucco project are company OMV Gas GmbH (Austria), Botas (Turkey), Bulgargaz (Bulgaria), SNTGN Transgaz SA (Romania), MOL Natural Gas Transmission Company Ltd. (Hungary), RWE (Germany). Each participant has an equal share – at 16.67 percent. The main suppliers for the project are considered Azerbaijan, Iraq and Turkmenistan.
Nabucco – the projected gas pipeline length of 3.3 thousand km, which will bypass Russia from Central Asia to EU countries, notably Austria and Germany. Its design capacity – 26-32 billion cubic meters. meters of gas a year. Initially, the pipeline project Nabucco, submitted in 2004, will deliver natural gas from fields in Iran in the Persian Gulf. In 2006, in connection with the conflict over Iran’s nuclear program, it was decided to amend the draft so as to be able to deliver gas from Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan.
NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen praises Georgia Army and Air guardsmen for their service with NATO forces in the global war on terror.
By Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry
The Georgia National Guard played host to NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who took time to honor Georgia Army and Air Guardsmen for their service with NATO forces in the global war on terror, as well as for their work with the nation of Georgia since 1995 through the State Partnership Program.
In addition to Atlanta, the secretary general is also visiting Austin, Texas; Chicago; and the nation’s capitol to address NATO’s critically important role in what it calls the “transatlantic relationship” between the United States and other NATO partners.
During an afternoon session at Georgia Air Guard Headquarters, just across the runway on Dobbin Air Reserve Base, Rasmussen talked with more than 60 soldiers, airmen and Georgia Department of Defense civilians about the Georgia Guard’s work with NATO in the War on Terror through the Joint Surveillance Target Attack System (JSTARS), the Army Guard’s operation of Combined Joint Task Force Phoenix in Afghanistan from 2009 to 2010, and the joint Army and Air work being done with the country of Georgia through the State Partnership Program to help that nation become a NATO partner.
“Most of the soldiers and airmen in the room have participated in NATO operations in Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan and most recently in support of the alliance in the skies over Libya,” said Maj. Gen. Terry Nesbitt, Georgia’s adjutant general, to the audience before Rasmussen delivered his remarks.
The 116th aircrews flying the E-8C JSTARS aircraft have, for example, flown more than 66,000 combat flight hours over Iraq and Afghanistan, providing command and control, and ISR – a multispectral intelligence sensor array – capability that is unique within NATO, Nesbitt noted. The wing has also participated in NATO’s Operation Odyssey Dawn and Unified Protector operations. Crews operating the 165th’s C-130 Hercules cargo planes have also provided airlift support to NATO operations.
In Afghanistan, Georgia Army guardsmen staffed Combined Task Force Phoenix. Comprised of more than 11,000 troops from more than 20 nations, the task force was commanded by Georgia’s Brig. Gen. Larry Dudney from spring 2009 to spring 2010. Dudney, Nesbitt added, also directed the Afghan National Security Forces Development Assistance Bureau.
The Georgia Guard’s partnership with the country of Georgia, Nesbitt added, has helped the NATO hopeful build an effective and “interoperable force,” capable of contributing to alliance operations. Indeed, the country of Georgia, is already the third largest provider of coalition forces to current NATO operations, Nesbitt said.
“We’re proud of our partner [the country of Georgia] and the progress it’s made, and we look forward to helping them achieve their goal of membership within the alliance,” he said.
Rasmussen said he found it a rare privilege to meet with soldiers and airmen who continue to make such a large contribution to NATO operations.
“I know that the motto of the National Guard is ‘always ready, always there,’ and this has been absolutely true – now and in the past, here in the United States and throughout the world,” Rasmussen said. “Whenever, wherever you’ve been asked to go, you’ve gone to make sure peace prevailed and nations like Afghanistan never again are the breeding ground for some of the world’s deadliest terrorists. Most recently, you’ve helped with the defense of innocent civilians in Libya against the senseless attacks of the present regime.”
Rasmussen said he knows the past few years have busy ones for the Georgia Guard – and the National Guard as a whole – and that its operational tempo has remained high throughout that time. He added that he also knows of the toll war takes on citizen-soldiers and airmen – some of whom have made the ultimate sacrifice in the fight against oppression and tyranny – and on their families.
“When you consider that you are all volunteers, and that many of you have done more than one tour abroad while your regular jobs and your regular lives were put on hold, your service is that much more remarkable,” Rasmussen said. “It takes a very special person to make that kind of commitment to serve, not only alongside NATO, but here within your own communities.”
NATO is busier now, Rasmussen said, than at any other time in its history. He added that the world in an increasingly predictable place, with many threats to its security and well-being. Terrorism, cyber attacks, piracy, failed states and nuclear proliferation know no borders and affect every nation. Be he affirmed, “There is no future for extremism.”
“The only way to identify and defeat such threats is by working together,” he said. “We do this by reaching out to our allies – like the United States – because no one nation, no one organization can do it alone. Solidarity between the NATO partners has, and will remain, vital to our continued success. Citizen-soldiers and airmen like you contribute greatly to our resolve.”
“I can only say ‘thank you’ for your professionalism, and for your dedication to the cause of freedom,” Rasmussen added. “Thanks, too, to your loved ones and your employers for their support of your service.”
He then took questions before moving out onto the Dobbins flight line to tour aircraft and speak with the crewmembers from Savannah’s 165th Airlift Wing, Marietta’s 78th Aviation Troop Command and Warner Robins’ 116th Air Control Wing.
For a video of Rasmussen’s visit, click here.
ABC news reported Pakistani officials are interested in studying the remains of helicopter and they suggested that the Chinese are interested as well.
The apparent Pakistan and Chinese interest was reported even as a key US lawmaker demanded immediate return of the chopper debris for fear of American military secrets being compromised.
“If this is not done immediately, it is probable, given Pakistan’s history, that our technology has already found its way into the hands of the Communist Chinese military that is buying, building, and stealing the necessary military technology to challenge the United States,” said Congressman Dana Rohrabacher while introducing a legislation in the House of Representatives to stop American aid to Pakistan.
In 1998, Pakistan’s military and intelligence services facilitated the transfer of an unexploded American Tomahawk missile recovered by Taliban to China.
The Chinese were then able to reverse engineer the missile and dissect its components allowing them to learn its vulnerabilities and defeat its capabilities.
During the May one raid in Abbottabad, a specially configured stealth US Special Forces helicopter crashed and even though US soldiers attempted to destroy it, the tail was left intact and recovered by the Pakistanis.
The US has already asked the Pakistanis for the helicopter wreckage back, but one Pakistani official told ABC News the Chinese were also “very interested” in seeing the remains. Another official said, “We might let them (the Chinese) take a look.”
A US official said he did not know if the Pakistanis had offered a peek to the Chinese, but said he would be “shocked” if the Chinese hadn’t already been given access to the damaged aircraft.
The chopper, which aviation experts believe to be a highly classified modified version of a Blackhawk helicopter, clipped a wall during the operation that took down the Al Qaeda leader, the White House said.
The Navy SEALs that rode in on the bird attempted to destroy it after abandoning it on the ground, but a significant portion of the tail section survived the explosion.
In the days after the raid, the tail section and other pieces of debris – including a mysterious cloth-like covering that the local children found entertaining to play with – were photographed being hauled away from the crash site by tractor, ABC reported.
Robert Ford: U.S. Asking Syria to Immediately End Assistance to Hizbullah
U.S. Ambassador to Damascus Robert Ford expressed his country’s concern about ties between Syria and Hizbullah and voiced alarm over reported transfers of arms to the Shiite party.
In an interview with Radio Sawa, the Arabic language radio station funded by the U.S. government, Ford said “the U.S. administration asked Syria to immediately stop its assistance to Hizbullah and to recognize the sovereignty of Lebanon on its territory as part of friendly ties” between the two countries.
The ambassador also urged Syrian authorities to start a “real dialogue” with representatives of the opposition and civil society and end their violent crackdown on protestors seeking democracy in the country.
The majority of victims in the past weeks of violence were unarmed civilians, Ford told the radio station, saying the Assad regime should allow peaceful demonstrations in Syria.
The ambassador added that he wasn’t seeing any serious political dialogue with protestors despite the mass demonstrations.
By Patricia Sullivan, Washington Post | December 26, 2005
WASHINGTON — Gust L. Avrakotos, 67, the CIA agent in charge of the massive arming of Afghan tribesmen during their 1980s guerrilla war against the Soviets, died of complications from a stroke Dec. 1 at Inova Fairfax (Va.) Hospital.
Mr. Avrakotos, who ran the largest covert operation in the agency’s history, was dubbed ”Dr. Dirty” for his willingness to handle ethically ambiguous tasks and a ”blue-collar James Bond” for his 27 years of undercover work. In the 1980s, he used Tennessee mules to bring hundreds of millions of dollars in automatic weapons, antitank guns, and satellite maps from Pakistan to the mujahideen.
Working with former Representative Charles Wilson, a Democrat from Texas, Mr. Avrakotos eventually controlled more than 70 percent of the CIA’s annual expenditures for covert operations, funneling it through intermediaries to the mujahideen. As a result, the tribesmen drove the Soviets out of Afghanistan, and the long Cold War shuddered toward an end.
Those weapons later were used in a civil war in Afghanistan before the Taliban took control. Critics noted that those weapons probably were still in use, both in support of and against US troops, when the United States went to war in Afghanistan in 2001.
Mr. Avrakotos, whose thermonuclear approach to internal politics twice led him to coarsely insult the CIA’s European division director, lost his position just as the Stinger antiaircraft missile launchers downed the first Soviet gunships. He was transferred to an African assignment and retired shortly thereafter, in 1989.
Mr. Avrakotos remained obscure until 2003, when ”60 Minutes” producer George Crile published ”Charlie Wilson’s War,” a best-selling description of how Wilson and Mr. Avrakotos strong-armed Congress and the bureaucracy into supporting the cause of the mujahideen. He may become still better known: Tom Hanks has bought the rights to turn the book into a movie.
Mr. Avrakotos was born in Aliquippa, Pa., the son of Greek immigrants, and attended Carnegie Institute of Technology until family finances forced him to leave after two years. He worked in a local steel mill, then sold beer and cigarettes to ethnic taverns throughout western Pennsylvania, learning to banter with the first-generation immigrants from eastern and central Europe. He returned to college and graduated from the University of Pittsburgh.
He joined the CIA in 1962, just after it began recruiting agents from beyond its Ivy League training grounds. Because he spoke Greek, he was assigned to Athens. While he was there, a military junta overthrew the democratic, constitutional government, and Mr. Avrakotos became the chief liaison to Greek colonels. Their fascist regime fell in 1974, and the November 17 terrorist group assassinated the CIA’s station chief. CIA renegade Philip Agee, who had exposed the Athens station chief’s name, exposed Mr. Avrakotos as well, and the Greek press vilified him for his role in the regime.
He left Greece in 1978. But he could not get another decent assignment with the CIA, Crile wrote, because his superiors considered him too uncouth.
A second-generation, working-class Greek American with a profane tongue and bare-knuckle character, Mr. Avrakotos never quite felt at home in the polished WASP world of the CIA’s elite. When the intelligence scandals of the 1970s resulted in a purge of agents in 1977, most were first- or second-generation Americans and Mr. Avrakotos felt betrayed by the organization. Not one to let bygones be bygones, Mr. Avrakotos once showed a photograph of a colleague who had crossed him to an old Greek woman and requested that she put a curse on him.
He eventually found a position with the Middle East desk at the CIA and worked his way into a position as section chief of the area that included Afghanistan. He was made a member of the elite Senior Intelligence Service in 1985 and received the Intelligence Medal of Merit in 1988.
”Throughout his Afghan tour, Avrakotos did things on a regular basis that could have gotten him fired had anyone chosen to barge into his arena with an eye toward prosecuting him. But then Avrakotos was not just lucky. He was brutally worldly wise, keenly aware of the internal risks he was taking. And so he always made it difficult for anyone to get him, should they try,” Crile wrote.
Backed by Wilson’s appropriations acumen, Mr. Avrakotos purchased so many weapons that he had to buy a special ship to move containers of them to Karachi. He badgered the Saudi Arabian government to keep a secret commitment to match US funds to the mujahideen and intimidated Senator Gordon J. Humphrey, a New Hampshire Republican, into quieting his criticism of the CIA. He batted away a proposal by Oliver North and Richard Perle to set up loudspeakers in the mountains to persuade Soviets to defect.
He shopped in Egypt for wheelbarrows and bicycles to be rigged as bombs. It was illegal to provide sniper rifles to foreigners, so he redefined the weapons as ”individual defensive devices . . . long-range, night-vision devices with scopes.”
However, after he filed a memo warning against North’s arms-for-hostages scheme, which came to be known as Iran-contra, his career ascent ended and he was reassigned to Africa.
He retired from the CIA in 1989, then worked for TRW in Rome and for News Corp., for whom he began a business intelligence newsletter, working in Rome and McLean, Va.
The McLean resident returned to work on contract for the CIA from 1997 until 2003.
His marriage to Judy Avrakotos ended in divorce.
Mr. Avrakotos leaves his wife of 19 years, Claudette; a son from his first marriage, Gregory of Melbourne Beach, Fla.; a sister; and two granddaughters.
[Perhaps the primary purpose of the staged death of bin Laden was to demonstrate the great potential of a Special Forces war (counterinsurgency) as a solution to Obama's quagmire? With the terror theaters of Afghanistan and Pakistan given to Special Forces and the African theater of terror being given to Naval Special Warfare Forces, then it is clear that we are leaving behind the costly total war concept, in favor of the Special Forces/Assassin units. We can expect to hear of multiple military assaults by mystery forces everywhere that the US has interests, without accepting responsibility publicly, unless we get someone like Zawahiri or Illyas Kashmiri. I told you this was coming several
The US is now waging a troop-heavy counterinsurgency to win Afghan hearts and minds. But the bin Laden raid has boosted critics, who say the Afghanistan war should involve smaller forces and a greater reliance on targeted strikes.
With the death of Osama bin Laden at the hands of a special operations force commando team on May 1, calls are intensifying to pull US troops out of Afghanistan more quickly and change US strategy in what has become America’s longest war.
After all, the argument goes, it was strikes by unmanned US Predator drones that ultimately drove Mr. bin Laden from the ungoverned tribal areas of Pakistan to the comparative affluent garrison town of Abbottabad, and it was US intelligence agencies that found him there. A premier team of Navy SEALs proved how effective the US military can be in small numbers.
Vice President Joe Biden and other US officials have long been advocating for America to end its troop-intensive counterinsurgency strategy of winning hearts and minds, and instead opt for a “counterterrorism” strategy, scaling back the number of soldiers on the ground and concentrating on promptly striking terrorist cells when they crop up. The bin Laden raid has now become their Exhibit A.
The “Biden” view, however, still has its share of opponents. The notion of a smaller, more flexible military relying on special forces strikes was tried – and failed – in Iraq before the surge, they say. To abandon the Afghan surge now, when it is beginning to show some signs of progress, would be to ignore the lessons of Iraq, they add.
In 2009, the Pentagon and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton ultimately prevailed in convincing President Obama that a surge of US troops was needed in Afghanistan, with 100,000 currently fighting throughout the country today. But the bin Laden operation has now given critics of that approach fresh momentum.
“I hope the killing of bin Laden signals the chapter of our military being extended in that part of the world will end, and we will conclude that actionable intelligence and clandestine operations will allow us to deal with our enemies effectively,” says Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D) of Ohio, a member of the Defense Appropriations Committee.
Critics speak out
On Monday, a bipartisan group of eight lawmakers similarly said the death of bin Laden “requires us to examine our policy of nation building in Afghanistan.”
“We believe it is no longer the best way to defend America against terror attacks, and we urge you to withdraw all troops from Afghanistan that are not crucial to the immediate national security objective of combating Al Qaeda,” wrote the congressmen, led by Reps. Peter Walsh (D) of Vermont and Jason Chaffetz (R) of Utah.
In a time of economic crisis, a strategy that relies more heavily on special-forces operations may offer more return on what is currently a tremendous investment, both in money and in political will, says retired Marine Col. T.X. Hammes, a senior research fellow with the Institute for National Strategic Studies at the National Defense University.
“We said we got into this war to get Al Qaeda guys,” he says. But as their ranks in Afghanistan diminish and the costs of the war escalate, “it’s getting harder and harder to argue that,” and in turn, to justify continued US troop presence on the ground, he adds.
Stay the course
The Biden counterterrorism approach has its detractors, most notably Secretary Clinton, as well as military leaders including Gen. David Petraeus, commander of the Afghan war and future director of the CIA. They have plenty of supporters on Capitol Hill, as well. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R) of South Carolina, who sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee, calls the prospect of a stepped-up US troop pullout a “catastrophic blunder.”
Photograph by: Reuters, The Province
As Americans celebrate Osama bin Laden’s death and the U.S. president takes the credit for the operation, they must ask themselves if they have now set a precedent by their illegal actions.
We have seen recently how America boldly and callously entered a phase of regime change with Saddam Hussein in Iraq, interfered with politics in Georgia and Ukraine and has now illegally entered Pakistan and assassinated an unarmed man.
Are they now any better than al-Qaida or the equally ruthless Israeli Mossad?
Is it now the Americans’ belief that they can enter any country they wish and shoot and kill anyone who opposes them with impunity? If so, America has set a dangerous precedent and embarked on a dangerous journey that will most likely come back to haunt them.
How the highly avowed American justice system has fallen.
Dave Harrison, Prince George
In first extended interview, widow of former federal official says he looked scared in his final days
When Katherine Klyce views the widely circulated video of her late husband, John P. Wheeler III, wandering around a Wilmington parking garage less than two days before he was beaten to death, she sees fear in the face of the man she loved.
“I think he was afraid,” Klyce told The News Journal about the video in which the former Pentagon official is seen looking in vain for his car.
In her first extended interview since his body tumbled from a garbage truck into the Cherry Island Landfill on Dec. 31, Klyce differed with those who believe Wheeler appeared disoriented in his final days.
Many observers of the high-profile murder mystery have noted that Wheeler looked disheveled while carrying his shoe and searching for his car, which had been in a garage several blocks away for weeks.
Klyce said she doesn’t know what might have frightened her husband of 13 years during his last days, a period in which he also beseeched his pharmacist for a ride from New Castle to Wilmington and asked strangers to drive him to Philadelphia.
“I don’t think he was acting abnormal,” Klyce said of a man known for quirky habits and forgetfulness.
Klyce acknowledged that the blunt-spoken, 66-year-old Wheeler, who suffered from bipolar disorder, had made “lots of enemies” during his years in the national defense community and as one of the key founders of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, but “nobody that would kill him.”
Since Wheeler was killed by lethal blows more than four months ago, Klyce has pondered whether he was killed by someone he accidentally encountered in Wilmington, where he was last seen shortly before 9 p.m. on Dec. 30, or whether he was the victim of assassination.
Asked if she was leaning toward one scenario, she said, “Yeah, but I’m not going to tell you which one. I’m open to being wrong.”
Klyce earlier told online magazine Slate.com she thought someone was “paid” to kill Wheeler, but her lawyer said she was only considering possibilities.
In a mystery that has drawn worldwide media scrutiny and a $25,000 reward offer from Klyce, police say they have no suspects and don’t know whether he was killed in a targeted or random attack.
WASHINGTON, May 10 (UPI) — Competition over the burgeoning defense industry market in South America had U.S. officials feeling threatened by the rise of an Israeli arms firm in the region, leaked diplomatic cables showed.
Cables made public by WikiLeaks and cited in U.S. media said the security company, led by the former head of operations for the Israeli military, made such inroads into Latin America a few years ago that U.S. diplomats saw it as a security risk and moved to thwart the company’s expansion.
The diplomats’ efforts were made easier when an interpreter for the Israeli firm, Global CST, was allegedly caught peddling classified Colombian Defense Ministry documents to Marxist guerrillas seeking to topple the state, said one cable cited by McClatchy Newspapers.
Global CST marketing led to sales contracts in Colombia, Peru and Panama — countries with varying levels of close ties with Washington and with shared strategic interests.
Colombian and U.S. forces are engaged in joint operations to stem the flow of narcotics from South and Central America to smuggling hubs in the north.
The perceived rivalry between the Israeli firm and U.S. administration interests began a few years ago, the leaked documents showed.
Israeli defense manufacturers are still active in South America and negotiations between various Israeli arms exporters and Latin American governments led to new deals last year. Argentina and Ecuador bought military equipment from Israel last year.
“The ability of the Israeli security consultancy to obtain contracts in Colombia, Peru and Panama in rapid succession speaks to the prowess of retired Israeli military officers in peddling security know-how amid perceptions that they’d bring better results than official U.S. government assistance,” McClatchy Newspapers reported.
“At one point, Panama’s intelligence chief threatened to rely more heavily on the Israelis out of anger that U.S. officials wouldn’t tap the phones of the president’s political enemies, according to then cables. U.S. officials countered that such an arrangement would threaten all security cooperation with Panama, and the Panamanians backed down,” said the report.
The cables also revealed that the first arms deal secured by Global CST in 2006 involved U.S. ally Colombia and the country’s current president, Juan Manuel Santos, who was defense minister at that time.
Colombia also received advice on eliminating the threat posed to the government by FARC guerrillas, increasingly seen as collaborators in extensive drug operations between South and North America.
Colombia made extensive use of retired and active duty Israeli officers skilled in special operations and military intelligence. That cooperation further boosted Colombia’s foreign defense purchases from Israel.
Global CST’s Israeli advisers also helped Peru’s fight against anti-government jungle guerrillas including the Maoist Shining Path insurgency.
In Panama, government security officials began relying on Global CST’s assistance after traditional ally U.S. officials declined requests that could draw them into domestic politics related intelligence operations, including phone-tapping targeted at political rivals.
Later on, however, Latin American enthusiasm for Global CST declined amid reported bungles with contracts and approaches that U.S. diplomats found unacceptable.
In 2009 Colombia changed its mind about the purchase of Israeli-made Hermes-450 unmanned aerial vehicles.
Colombia’s relations with Global CST went sour over strong U.S. objections and fears of security risks after a 2008 incident, when a Global CST interpreter, Argentine-born Israeli national Shai Killman, was accused of trying to sell classified Colombian Defense Ministry documents to the FARC rebel group. Killman has denied any role in the attempted sale of sensitive Colombian documents to FARC.
Since the reported activities in South America, Global CST has run into trouble with the Israeli government over arms sales in Africa.
[John Boner invites Netanyahu to Congress, hoping to revive Israeli/Syrian/Lebanon conflict, while his Republican allies in the Senate once again take-up the cause of former Soviet Georgia, without really mentioning the real cause of the S. Ossetian war. Georgia's anti-Russian campaign, focused on seizing the strategic Roki Tunnel and blocking the only highway linking Russia and S. Ossetia. This Republican anti-Russian, anti-Syrian offensive is coupled with a new Democrat offensive against China, led by the rabid terrier-like Hillary Clinton. What we are seeing unfold here, on the cusp of the coming presidential election, is the real mission of the Imperialist war-mongers--the blocking of Chinese and Russian aspirations, by every means at our government's disposal, beginning with the standard "diplomatic" offensive. All the jockeying in Asia and Africa have been setting us up for this coming ultimate conquest. Can Russia and China effectively oppose an American offensive, intended to give US corporate interests total control to Asian and African energy sources?
A better question might be--How could they NOT oppose the American expansion into their neighborhoods and spheres of interest?]
|MAY 11, 2011|
|OFFICE OF SENATOR JEANNE SHAHEEN
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) introduced a resolution today affirming U.S. support for the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of the country of Georgia and calling upon Russia to remove its occupying forces from Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
“As we continue to strive to achieve a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace, it is critical that we recognize the tenuous situation that remains in Georgia today,”Shaheen said. “It’s been nearly three years since war broke out in the South Caucasus between Russia and Georgia, yet Russian troops still occupy Georgia’s Abkhazia and South Ossetia regions. Long-term peace and stability in this strategically important region is vital to American economic, security, and diplomatic interests. This means strengthening U.S.-Georgia relations and sending a clear message to the Russian Federation that the continued presence of Russian troops in Georgia is not part of the solution.”
“I am proud to introduce this resolution with Senator Shaheen. Russia’s invasion of Georgian land in 2008 was an act of aggression not only to Georgia, but to all new democracies,” Graham said. “I will continue to stand by Georgia to make sure this young democracy moves forward and becomes a shining example of what can happen after the fall of the Soviet Union.”
Shaheen and Graham have been leading the effort in the Senate to strengthen the U.S.-Georgia relationship. The two currently co-chair a bipartisan task force on Georgia, sponsored by the Atlantic Council, which was launched on the second anniversary of the Russia-Georgia war and aims to encourage a bipartisan consensus on policy toward Georgia.
As Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on European Affairs, Shaheen also convened a hearing on the situation in Georgia on the first anniversary of the Russia-Georgia war in August 2009.
[John "Boner" is trying to finish the Lebanon 2006 war to Israel's satisfaction, with Obama's help (even if he has to force him). It was not enough, that the United States destroyed Iraq to make the shitty little Zionist monster feel safer on its misappropriated "homeland," now our Zionist president is preparing to attempt to do the same thing to Syria and Syria's protectorate, Lebanon. Haven't we killed enough Muslims to give the Likudniks never-ending wet dreams already?]
US House Speaker John Boehner will invite Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address a joint meeting of the US Congress
The plan worked: as the rebels pulled back to a line designated by Nato, Libyan armour advanced towards Adjabiya, to be met by several hours of sustained air strikes.
“There was a really large force of Gaddafi forces heading towards Adjabiya,” said Colonel Ali Bani, spokesman for the rebel army. “As they moved on Adjabiya they were hit by Nato forces.”
A source who arrived with food supplies for the troops said French and British advisers were stationed near the front line, both to direct air support and to organise the new rebel battalions to act in concert.
After the successful deception, rebel units were in jubilant mood. “We did our job,” said Abdu Jawad, commander of a rebel brigade.
[I guess the Army/Navy game will be played in Tehran.]
STUTTGART, Germany − A special forces unit, newly commissioned at U.S. Africa Command, has expertise in African security matters and will be available for crisis response missions and counter-terrorism operations on the continent, where insurgent groups in Somalia and North Africa threaten regional stability.
Naval Special Warfare Unit-10, with its focus on Africa, “will ensure our national interests are protected, violent extremists organizations are placed in check and key partner nations start controlling their own security posture,” said Cmdr. Joseph Geary, the unit’s leader, during a recent commissioning ceremony at Panzer Kaserne in Stuttgart.
The unit is the only force Special Operations Command Africa “can use to quickly respond to crises or contingencies on the continent,” Geary said.
Among groups that threaten regional security are the al-Qaida-inspired al-Shabab, which has been waging war for several years against a weak, Western-backed government in Somalia and has claimed responsibility for terrorist attacks beyond that country’s borders. In northern Africa, the group known as al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb could have jihadist ambitions beyond the remote desert terrain where it now operates, according to some terrorism experts.
Whether conducting counterterrorism operations or traditional military-to-military training, Special Forces units are best suited for work in places such as Africa, where the U.S. wants to maintain a light footprint, according to Jim Gavrilis, a security consultant and former U.S. Army Special Forces officer.
“There is no question, Special Forces are an economy of force,” Gavrilis said. “You create better battlefield effects from these smaller units. I think the potential for Special Forces to get deeper into Africa is high.”
After AFRICOM was established in 2008, Rear Adm. Edward G. Winters III, commander of Naval Special Warfare Command, “considered it logical to establish NSWU-10 since he believed Africa would require greater attention from U.S. Special Operations Command,” according to SOCAFRICA.
The process of commissioning NSWU-10 began in the spring of 2009 and required coordination between the secretary of defense, two combatant commands, the host nation government and garrison officials, according to SOCAFRICA.
[China's crackdown on "democracy" is an act of self-defense, at this point. Both China and Russia understand that the sudden surge of "democracy" has been pre-manufactured by American assets, to advance American Imperial policy. Resistance is the only choice, since American intentions are clearly to take control of vital energy corridors, in order to prevent China having the energy resources it must have, as Asia's industrial/economic powerhouse.
Clinton is the real fool.]
Hillary Clinton: “We had candid discussions on some of our most persistent challenges”
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has criticised China’s crackdown on dissent as “a fool’s errand”, saying Beijing is trying to halt history.
In an interview with The Atlantic, Mrs Clinton also called the nation’s human rights record “deplorable”.
She defended US dealings with Beijing, saying: “We live in the real world.”
The BBC’s Kim Ghattas in Washington says Mrs Clinton seemed to suggest the Chinese system itself would collapse and that democracy was inevitable.
The article quotes Mrs Clinton as saying last month that China’s leaders were “worried” that the wave of pro-democracy protests overtaking the Middle East would spread east to China.
“They’re trying to stop history, which is a fool’s errand,” she said. “They cannot do it, but they’re going to hold it off as long as possible.”
A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
The U.S. anti-war movement was always a lot less than it appeared to be. At its height, activists claimed that the sheer weight of visible public opinion would shake power relationships to the very foundation. But it turned out that many of the anti-war legions were actually comprised of partisan Democrats who only opposed Republican wars. “For the phony anti-warrior, imperialism with a Democratic face, is just fine.”
The Phony Anti-War Movement
A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
“Once Obama was safely in the White House, the anti-war movement was all but dismantled, having served its partisan political purpose.”
Two university researchers have proven, by the numbers, what the real anti-war movement has known for years: that many of the folks that turned out in such large numbers to demonstrate against America’s wars when George Bush was president, were really only opposed to Republican wars. Thus, when Barack Obama captured the White House, the so-called anti-war movement largely collapsed.
The new study was put together by Michael Heaney, of the University of Michigan, and Fabio Rojas, of Indiana University. It shows, essentially, that many Democrats were motivated to pick up peace placards and shout anti-war slogans more by their dislike of George Bush and the Republicans, than for genuine opposition to America’s multiple wars around the globe – wars that Obama expanded upon, while adding his own, new theaters of war. Professor Heaney puts it this way. “The antiwar movement should have been furious at Obama’s ‘betrayal’ and reinvigorated its protest activity. Instead,” says Heaney, “attendance at antiwar rallies declined precipitously and financial resources available to the movement have dissipated.” The professor concluded that, “The election of Obama appeared to be a demobilizing force on the antiwar movement, even in the face of his pro-war decisions.”
In other words, much of the anti-war movement was phony, a cynical gathering of partisan Democrats who were really never all that concerned for the victims of U.S. imperial warfare, or for the huge dislocations that the national security state places on the U.S. economy. No, they just wanted their guy, the Democrat, to win. Once Obama was safely in the White House, the anti-war movement was all but dismantled, having served its partisan political purpose. For the phony anti-warrior, imperialism with a Democratic face, is just fine.
“Much of the anti-war movement was a cynical gathering of partisan Democrats who were really never all that concerned for the victims of U.S. imperial warfare.”
Heaney and Rojas came to their conclusions by surveying 5,400 participants in 27 anti-war demonstrations in Washington, DC, New York, Chicago, San Francisco and other cities from January 2007 to December 2009. The researchers carefully constructed the respondents’ political and activist histories and affiliations. A clear pattern emerged: once Obama was elected, Democratic activists dropped out of anti-war politics. People affiliated with third parties remained, and became more central to the now smaller, but more radical, movement.
It really didn’t require a university degree to understand that United for Peace and Justice, UFPJ, the anti-war umbrella group during the height of protest, was behaving more as an arm of the Democratic Party than as principled peace activists. The shallowness of these phony anti-warriors was so obvious, UFPJ was widely derided as United for Peanut Butter and Jelly.
A much smaller anti-war movement survives under the leader of UNAC, the United National Anti-war Committee.
The people that like the Democratic Party more than peace, are gone – and are not likely to return until the Republicans recapture the White House – at which point these phony peace advocates will pretend that they never left.
For Black Agenda Radio, I’m Glen Ford. On the web, go towww.BlackAgendaReport.com.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted atGlen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.