CIA Drone Offensive To Prove Khost Bomber Irrelevant

[Escalation in drone offensive seen in anti-Hakeemullah attacks and drone swarm in N. Waziristan.]

Officials say TTP chief injured

Taliban spokesman denies injuries to Hakimullah
PESHAWAR: Local official sources and the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan have confirmed that top militant commander Hakimullah Mehsud was injured in the US drone attack in the Shaktoi village of South Waziristan on Thursday.

A private TV channel quoted local official sources and the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan as saying that Hakimullah was in the house when the US drone struck and at the time of the attack, a meeting of foreign militants was underway.

Two foreign militants and eight local fighters were among the 10 killed in the US drone attack while eight others, including Hakimullah, were among the injured, they said. Hakimullah is being treated at an undisclosed location and his condition is out of danger, the sources added. Hakimullah, the sources said, received minor injuries in the head. The vehicle that was destroyed in the attack belonged to Hakimullah, the sources said.

The Taliban have arrested three Uzbek militants for their alleged involvement in spying. They have been shifted to an undisclosed location. Meanwhile, the Taliban released an audio recording allegedly made on Friday in which the group’s leader, Hakimullah Mehsud, said he was alive, after reports he was killed in a US missile strike.

The recording was sent to media outlets by unnamed Taliban militants. Reporters familiar with Mehsud said the voice appeared to be his, but there was no mention of dates or the specific strike alleged to have killed him.

“Sometimes they (the government) launch propaganda about my martyrdom through the media and sometimes they say that the operation has been completed in South Waziristan. This can never happen,” Mehsud said.

“I want to caution the Pakistani nation that the drone attacks in tribal areas are a danger to Pakistan’s security and sovereignty,” he said. “From now onwards, any dangerous step that the Taliban will take in Pakistan, the responsibility will be on the government.”

10 killed in two more drone attacks

US Intelligence Agencies, the Nemesis of Mankind

Intelligence Agencies Are Their Achilles Heel

By J. Speer-Williams

Lynchpins hold the various elements of a complex structure together.
America’s intelligence agencies are the lynchpins, used by the International Monetary/Banking Cartel to enforce their various agendas on the US government.
Decades ago, Congress lost control of our intelligence agencies, making a parody of the system of “checks and balances” envisioned by our founding fathers. Today, the foreign Monetary Cartel  controls all three of our branches of government through their ownership of what has never  really been “our” intelligence services.
Meanwhile, the Cartel’s mass media deflects our attention away from the unconstitutional and secret powers of the underground intelligence community with petty exposes of how the K Street gang of lobbyists buy off our elected and appointed officials.
Do they really expect us to believe that what is reported on during the light of day exceeds thatwhich transpires during the dark of night?
The usual tools of enforcement used by intelligence agents on our elected officials and appointed bureaucrats are various, depending on what’s needed: Fixing elections, bribes, blackmail, and assassinations are their usual instruments of forcing compliance from our national leaders.
Subvert a nation’s intelligence services and you’re one step from subverting a nation’s government, something long ago accomplished by the International Monetary/Banking Cartel in America.
The thousands of outrageous and unconstitutional governmental orders, directives, laws, judicial interpretations, and actions taken by our federal government has made America no better than any other Banana Republic in history; for some time, we’ve been ruled by a self-appointed, corrupt and exceedingly small group of private financial oligarchs through their control of intelligence agencies. And as long as Americans continue to believe they live in a democracy, the longer this foreign Monetary Cartel will have their way with us.
The very first realization the majority of people must have to regain control of their respective nations is coming to know with certainty that the private Monetary/Banking Cartel, not only controls the central banks of the world, they own them. This ownership allows – probably no more than a few hundred financial capitalists – to create money, of any country, out of the thinest of airs, control all credit, and to then enforce into indebtedness all nations and peoples of the world.
Such edification, however, may prove to be difficult in a world wherein its super-power – the USA – is largely composed of people who believe the Cartel’s US central bank – the Federal Reserve System – is a American federal government institution. The American government has more control over Federal Express than it does over the Federal Reserve System.
And before the American government can issue its own currency and credit (without debt), she must defang its intelligence community of sixteen bloated intelligence and security agencies, starting with the CIA, FBI, and National Security Agency; but doing so will not be easy or without danger.
Toward the end of his term as president, John F. Kennedy swore he was going to tear the CIA into a thousands pieces: He paid the ultimate price for his patriotic intention. Disempowering US intelligence agencies will not be an easy job, as they have never been more powerful.
And under the cover of the “national security” ruse, intelligence agencies have grown even more influential and authoritative, as they turn us into a rogue nation, intent on destroying all of our liberties at home, while expanding our terrorist attacks on innocent people abroad, complete with the torture of our fellow human beings. One can only hope that the majority of Americans will stop opting for security over their freedoms.
Ben Franklin wrote, “They who give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”
But ironically, the so-called “national security” and “consumer protection” measures taken by the US government have made our country more insecure than ever before in our history. From a plummeting economy, to wide-open borders, to dangerous full-body scanners, to poisonous vaccines, to chemtrails, to GMO foods, to the loss of habeas corpus, to the bombing of women and children, to the depleted uranium poisoning of our own troops (and the entire world), Americans have never been so insecure, all thanks to the ruling moneychangers of our world and their covert use of national intelligence  agencies.
Robber barons have thrown us back into the Middle Ages and into a neo-feudalism, all superimposed with poisons, radiation, and a fascistic government, largely in the name of “national security.”
But if we can defang the intelligence agencies, we will have defanged the nemesis of mankind – the alien, archfiends of the International Monetary/Banking Cartel. Intelligence agencies are their Achilles’ heel – perhaps a small, but a potentially mortal weakness.
J. Speer-Williams

The Militarization of Emergency Aid to Haiti: Is it a Humanitarian Operation or an Invasion?

The Militarization of Emergency Aid to Haiti: Is it a Humanitarian Operation or an Invasion?

by Michel Chossudovsky

Haiti has a longstanding history of US military intervention and occupation going back to the beginning of the 20th Century. US interventionism has contributed to the destruction of Haiti’s national economy and the impoverishment of its population.The devastating earthquake is presented to World public opinion as the sole cause of the country’s predicament.

A country has been destroyed, its infrastructure demolished. Its people precipitated into abysmal poverty and despair.

Haiti’s history, its colonial past have been erased.

The US military has come to the rescue of an impoverished Nation. What is its Mandate?

Is it Humanitarian Operation or an Invasion?

The main actors in America’s “humanitarian operation” are the Department of Defense, the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). (See USAID Speeches: On-The-Record Briefing on the Situation in Haiti, 01/13/10). USAID has also been entrusted in channelling food aid to Haiti, which is distributed by the World Food Program. (See USAID Press Release: USAID to Provide Emergency Food Aid for Haiti Earthquake Victims, January 13, 2010)

The military component of the US mission, however, tends to overshadow the civilian functions of rescuing a desperate and impoverished population. The overall humanitarian operation is not being led by civilian governmental agencies such as FEMA or USAID, but by the Pentagon.

The dominant decision making role has been entrusted to US Southern Command (SOUTHCOM).

A massive deployment of military hardware personnel is contemplated. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen has confirmed that the US will be sending nine to ten thousand troops to Haiti, including 2000 marines. (American Forces Press Service, January 14, 2010)

Aircraft carrier, USS Carl Vinson and its complement of supporting ships has already arrived in Port au Prince. (January 15, 2010).  The  2,000-member Marine Amphibious Unit as well as and soldiers from the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne division “are trained in a wide variety of missions including security and riot-control in addition to humanitarian tasks.”

In contrast to rescue and relief teams dispatched by various civilian teams and organizations, the humanitarian mandate of the US military is not clearly defined:

“Marines are definitely warriors first, and that is what the world knows the Marines for,… [but] we’re equally as compassionate when we need to be, and this is a role that we’d like to show — that compassionate warrior, reaching out with a helping hand for those who need it. We are very excited about this.” (Marines’ Spokesman, Marines Embark on Haiti Response Mission, Army Forces Press Services, January 14, 2010)

While presidents Obama and Préval spoke on the phone, there was no discussions between the two governments, regarding the entry and deployment of US troops on Haitian soil. The decision was taken and imposed unilaterally by Washington. The total lack of a functioning government in Haiti was used to legitimize, on humanitarian grounds, the sending in of a powerful military force, which has de facto taken over several governmental functions.


US Military Assets  to be Sent to Haiti. (according to official announcements)

The amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5) and amphibious dock landing ships USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43) and USS Carter Hall (LSD 50).

A 2,000-member Marine Amphibious Unit from the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit and soldiers from the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne division. 900 soldiers are slated to arrive in Haiti by January 15th.

Aircraft carrier, USS Carl Vinson and its complement of supporting ships. (arrived in Port au Prince on January 15, 2010): USS Carl Vinson CVN 70

The hospital ship USNS Comfort

Several U.S. Coast Guard vessels and helicopters

USS Carl Vinson

The three amphibious ships will join aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson, guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy and guided-missile frigate USS Underwood.

USS Normandy

Leading Role of US Southern Command

US Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) with headquarters in Miami is the “lead agency” in Haiti. Its mandate as a regional military command is to carry out modern warfare. Its stated mission in Latin America and the Caribbean is  “to conduct military operations and promote security cooperation to achieve U.S. strategic objectives.” (Our Mission – U.S. Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) The commanding officers  are trained to oversee theater operations, military policing as well “counterinsurgency” in Latin America and the Caribbean, including the recent establishment of new US military bases in Colombia, within proximity of the Venezuelan border.

General Douglas Fraser, commander of U.S. Southern Command has defined the Haiti emergency operation as a Command, Control, Communications operation (C3). US Southern Command is to oversee a massive deployment of military hardware, including several warships, an aircraft carrier, airborne combat divisions, etc:

“So we’re focused on getting command and control and communications there so that we can really get a better understanding of what’s going on. MINUSTAH [United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti], as their headquarters partially collapsed, lost a lot of their communication, and so we’re looking to robust that communication, also.

We’re also sending in assessment teams in conjunction with USAID, supporting their efforts, as well as putting in some of our own to support their efforts.

We’re moving various ships that we had in the region — they’re small ships, Coast Guard cutters, destroyers — in that direction, to provide whatever immediate assistance that we can on the ground.

We also have a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier, the USS Carl Vinson, moving in that direction. It was at sea off of Norfolk, and so it’s going to take a couple of days for it to get there. We need to also just resupply it and give it the provisions it needs to support the effort as we look at Haiti. And then we’re looking across the international agencies to figure out how we support their efforts as well as our efforts.

We also are looking at a large-deck amphibious ship with an embarked Marine Expeditionary Unit on it that will be a couple of days behind the USS Vinson.

And that gives us a broader range of capability to move supplies around, to have lift capability to help support the effort there also.

So bottom line to it is, we don’t have a clear assessment right now of what the situation on the ground is, what the needs within Port-au-Prince are, how extensive the situation is.

We also, finally, have a team that’s headed in to the airport. From my understanding — because my deputy commander just happened to be in Haiti when this situation happened, on a previously scheduled visit. He has been to the airport. He says the runway is functional but the tower doesn’t have communications capability. The passenger terminal — has structural damage to it, so we don’t know what the status of it is.

So we have a group going in to make sure we can gain and secure the airfield and operate from it, because that’s one of those locations we think we’re going to have a lot of the immediate effort from an international basis going into.

And then we’re out conducting all the other assessments that you would consider appropriate as we go in and work this effort.

We’re also coordinating on the ground with MINUSTAH, with the folks who are there. The commander for MINUSTAH happened to be in Miami when this situation happened, so he’s right now traveling back through and should be arriving in Port-au-Prince any time now. So that will help us coordinate our efforts there also, because again, obviously the United Nations suffered a significant loss there with the collapse — at least partial collapse of their headquarters.

So that’s — those are the initial efforts that we have ongoing And as we get the assessments of what’s coming next, then we’ll adjust as required.

The secretary of Defense, the president, have all stipulated that this is a significant effort, and we’re corralling all the resources within the Department of Defense to support this effort.” ( News Transcript: DOD News Briefing with Gen. Fraser from the Pentagon, January 13, 2010)

A Heritage Foundation report summarizes the substance of America’s mission in Haiti: “The earthquake has both humanitarian and U.S. national security implications[requiring] a rapid response that is not only bold but decisive, mobilizing U.S. military, governmental, and civilian capabilities for both a short-term rescue and relief effort and a longer-term recovery and reform program in Haiti.” (James M. Roberts and Ray Walser, American Leadership Necessary to Assist Haiti After Devastating Earthquake, Heritage Foundation, January 14, 2010).

At the outset, the military mission will be involved in first aid and emergency.

The US Air Force has taken over air traffic control functions as well as the management of Port au Prince airport. In other words, the US military regulates the flow of emergency aid and relief supplies which are being brought into the country in civilian planes. The US Air Force is not working under the instructions of Haitian Airport officials. These officials have been displaced. The airport is run by the US Military (Interview with Haitian Ambassador to the US R. Joseph, PBS News, January 15, 2010)

The 1,000-bed U.S. Navy hospital ship, USNS Comfort, which includes more than 1,000 medical and support personnel has been sent to Haiti under the jurisdiction of Southern Command. (See Navy hospital ship with 1,000 beds readies for Haiti quake relief, Digital Journal, January 14, 2010).

There were, at the time of the Earthquake, some 7100 military personnel and over 2000 police, namely a foreign force of over 9000. In contrast, the international civilian personnel of MINUSTAH is less than 500. MINUSTAH Facts and Figures – United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti


United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH)

Current strength (30 November 2009)

9,065 total uniformed personnel

Estimated combined SOUTHCOM and MINUSTAH forces; 19,095*

*Excluding commitments by France (unconfirmed) and Canada (confirmed 800 troops), the US, France and Canada were “partners” in the February 29, 2004 Coup d’État.

The contingent of US forces under SOUTHCOM combined with those of MINUSTAH brings foreign military presence in Haiti to close to 20,000 in a country of 9 million people. In  comparison to Afghanistan, prior to Obama’s military surge, combined US and NATO forces were of the order of  70,000 for a population of 28 million. In other words, on a per capita basis there will be more troops in Haiti than in Afghanistan.

Recent US Military Interventions in Haiti

There have been several US sponsored military interventions in recent history. In 1994, following three years of military rule, a force of  20,000 occupation troops and “peace-keepers” was sent to Haiti. The 1994 US military intervention “was not intended to restore democracy. Quite the contrary: it was carried out to prevent a popular insurrection against the military Junta and its neoliberal cohorts.” (Michel Chossudovsky, The Destabilization of Haiti, Global Research, February 29, 2004)

US and allied troops remained in the country until 1999. The Haitian armed forces were disbanded and the US State Department hired a mercenary company DynCorp to provide “technical advice” in restructuring the Haitian National Police (HNP). (Ibid).

The February 2004 Coup d’État

In the months leading up to the 2004 Coup d’Etat, US special forces and the CIA were training death squadrons composed of the former tonton macoute of the Duvalier era. The Rebel paramilitary army crossed the border from the Dominican Republic in early February 2004. “It was a well armed, trained and equipped paramilitary unit integrated by former members of Le Front pour l’avancement et le progrès d’Haiti (FRAPH), the “plain clothes” death squadrons, involved in mass killings of civilians and political assassinations during the CIA sponsored 1991 military coup, which led to the overthrow of the democratically elected government of President Jean Bertrand Aristide.” (see Michel Chossudovsky, The Destabilization of Haiti: Global Research. February 29, 2004)

Foreign troops were sent into Haiti. MINUSTAH was set up in the wake of the US sponsored coup d’Etat in February 2004 and the kidnapping and deportation of the democratically elected president Jean Bertrand Aristide. The coup was insitigated by the US with the support of  France and Canada.

The FRAPH units subsequently integrated the country’s police force, which was under the supervision of MINUSTAH. In the political and social disarray triggered of the earthquake, the former armed militia and Ton Ton macoute will be playing a new role.

Hidden Agenda

The unspoken mission of US Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) with headquarters in Miami and US military installations throughout Latin America is to ensure the maintenance of subservient national regimes, namely US proxy governments, committed to the Washington Consensus and the neoliberal policy agenda. While US military personnel will at the outset be actively involved in emergency and disaster relief, this renewed US military presence in Haiti will be used  to establish a foothold in the country as well pursue America’s strategic and geopolitical objectives in the Caribbean basin, which are largely directed against Cuba and Venezuela.

The objective is not to work towards the rehabilitation of the national government, the presidency, the parliament, all of which has been decimated by the earthquake. Since the fall of the Duvalier dictatorship, America’s design has been to gradually dismantle the Haitian State, restore colonial patterns and obstruct the functioning of a democratic government. In the present context, the objective is not only to do away with the government but also to revamp the mandate of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), of which the headquarters have been destroyed.

“The role of heading the relief effort and managing the crisis quickly fell to the United States, for lack — in the short term, at least — of any other capable entity.” (US Takes Charge in Haiti _ With Troops, Rescue Aid –, January 14, 2009)

Prior to the earthquake, there were, according to US military sources, some 60 US military personnel in Haiti. From one day to the next, an outright military surge has occurred: 10,000 troops, marines, special forces, intelligence operatives, etc., not to mention private mercenary forces on contract to the Pentagon.

In all likelihood the humanitarian operation will be used as a pretext and justification to establish a more permanent US military presence in Haiti.

We are dealing with a massive deployment, a “surge” of military personnel assigned to emergency relief.

The first mission of SOUTHCOM will be to take control of what remains of the country’s communications, transport and energy infrastructure. Already, the airport is under de facto US control. In all likelihood, the activities of MINUSTAH which from the outset in 2004 have served US foreign policy interests, will be coordinated with those of SOUTHCOM, namely the UN mission will be put under de facto control of the US military.

The Militarization of Civil Society Relief Organizations

The US military in Haiti seeks to oversee the activities of approved humanitarian organizations. It also purports to encroach upon the humanitarian activities of  Venezuela and Cuba:

“The government under President René Préval is weak and literally now in shambles. Cuba and Venezuela, already intent on minimizing U.S. influence in the region, are likely to seize this opportunity to raise their profile and influence…” (James M. Roberts and Ray Walser, American Leadership Necessary to Assist Haiti After Devastating Earthquake, Heritage Foundation, January 14, 2010).

In the US, The militarization of emergency relief operations was established during the Katrina crisis, when the US military was called in to play a lead role.

The model of emergency intervention for SOUTHCOM is patterned on the role of NORTHCOM, which was granted a mandate as “the lead agency” in US domestic emergency procedures. During Hurricane Rita in 2005, the groundwork for the “militarization of emergency relief” involving a leading role for the US military was established. In this regard, Bush had hinted to the central role of the military in emergency relief: “Is there a natural disaster–of a certain size–that would then enable the Defense Department to become the lead agency in coordinating and leading the response effort? That’s going to be a very important consideration for Congress to think about.” (Statement of President Bush at a press conference, Bush Urges Shift in Relief Responsibilities –, September 26, 2005).

“The response to the national disaster is not being coordinated by the civilian government out of Texas, but from a remote location and in accordance with military criteria. US Northern Command Headquarters will directly control the movement of military personnel and hardware in the Gulf of Mexico. As in the case of Katrina, it will override the actions of civilian bodies. Yet in this case, the entire operation is under the jurisdiction of the military rather than under that of FEMA.” (Michel Chossudovsky, US Northern Command and Hurricane Rita, Global Research, September 24, 2005)

Concluding Remarks

The entry of ten thousand heavily armed US troops, coupled with the activities of local militia could potentially precipitate the country into social chaos.

Twenty thousand foreign troops under SOUTHCOM and MINUSTAH commands will be present in the country.

The Haitian people have exhibited a high degree of solidarity, resilience and social commitment.

Helping one another and acting with consciousness: under very difficult conditions, citizens rescue teams were set up spontaneously.

The militarization of relief operations will break the organizational capabilities of Haitians to rebuild and reinstate the institutions of civilian government which have been destroyed. It will also encroach upon the efforts of the international medical teams and civilian relief organisations.

It is absolutely essential that the Haitian people forcefully oppose the presence of foreign troops, particularly in public security operations.

It is essential that Americans across the land forcefully oppose the decision of the Obama adminstration to send US combat troops to Haiti.

There can be no real reconstruction or development under foreign military occupation.

The West Knows What Is Best for Everyone Else

US war machine enters Yemen

As Iraq and Afghanistan have proved, Washington is unlikely to gain from opening anti-terror fronts in foreign states

By Fawaz Turki, Special to Gulf News

  • Gulf News

  • What does it all mean? Is Obama, much to our consternation, turning into yet another war president?
  • Image Credit: Dwynn Ronal, Gulf News

Passion burns cold in Washington these days at the turn events have taken. “And I will not tolerate it”, thundered President Barack Obama as he called for greater oversight by the intelligence community over the flow of suspect foreign nationals into the US.

After the 9/11 terrorist attacks revealed the soft underbelly of the US, the shoe-bomber and, more recently, the underwear bomber on Christmas Day have only made things worse. (Not my fault that Americans have a penchant for choosing pithy monikers for terrorists.)

Then there was that suicide bomber, a Jordanian double agent, who killed seven CIA operatives at their base in eastern Afghanistan. To complicate matters further, a new front is shaping up in Yemen, where the Obama administration has ramped up military aid, counter-terrorist action and drone strikes, though the Yemeni government declared that there are “limits” to its cooperation with the Americans.

It remains to be seen whether the US can accomplish in Yemen, what it has failed to accomplish in Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan: take early action to prevent Al Qaida from forming a credible force in lawless regions.

What does it all mean? Is Obama, much to our consternation, turning into yet another war president?

As it enters the second decade of the new century, the US clearly continues to hold a hegemonic position in the world, enjoying unimaginable military might, technological dynamism and economic weight.

Yet the exercise of that enormous power, since America’s emergence as a functioning emperium beginning, say, with William McKinley in the 1890s (who took the accidental explosion of the battleship Maine as an excuse to declare war on the Spanish colonies) right down to George W. Bush (who took his country to a manifestly fraudulent war in Iraq), was always badly conceptualised and executed.

A hegemonic ethos continues to define US foreign policy. It lies behind all aggressive White House decisions and congressional initiatives to impose sanctions on recalcitrant governments, or ‘rogue states’, that are not sufficiently responsive to American demands.

How the democratically-elected Hamas government was pauper-sided by the US Treasury department, crippled by sanctions and finally overthrown by CIA machinations not long ago provides a stark example of this intellectually and morally bankrupt posture.

The justification for that posture is that America, and along with it the European industrialised nations, has a ‘duty’ to improve humanity’s lot — even where that requires military action, and intervention by the boys from Langley in the internal affairs of countries as far apart as Iran in 1953 and Chile in 1973.

Leaders in the Euro-American world know what is best for other peoples, other nations and other polities, that are less endowed than they are. They stand taller than us. They scan horizons beyond our vision. And they have every right to be intolerant of miscreants and impatient with contrarian voices — as if it is unusual for superpowers to invite opposition and resentment by the world’s poor and powerless.

What are we to say to these antiquated, anti-historical notions about the white man’s burden, la mission civilizatrice, foisted upon by these folks who speak openly of ‘Islamo-fascism’ and ‘Islamic terrorism’? Folks whose own modern history caused some 80 million deaths in the great European wars between 1914 and 1945?

It takes no psycho-historian to determine that that bloodbath was the inevitable terminus of 400 years of colonial rule over the ‘subjugated peoples’, millions of whom were robbed, murdered, tortured, and worked to death, all with efficient calm, in the colonial outposts of the British, French, Dutch, Portuguese, Italian and Belgian empires.

Learning no lessons

This barbarism (for what other word would you choose here?) grew out of the very core of the Western body politic. The dessemination of humanistic ideas proved no barrier to wanton brutality. That barbarism grew, root and branch, in the very homeground where Renaissance culture was born, as if the best ideas that had been written, thought and imagined by European thinkers left no discernible impact on those who encountered them.

Those who ran Belsen (a Nazi concentration camp in Germany) then, and those who ‘rendered’ human beings for torture more recently, had been reared on the Western intellectual tradition. None of it, it appears, ever sunk in.

The US opening a new front in Yemen? Oh, peleeeeze! Those beating the drums of war may, like Robert Duval in Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now, ‘love the smell of napalm in the morning’, but a war in Yemen, yet another enigmatic country with a culture difficult to fathom, will not work out in Washington’s favour.

It will not work out because men of colour, ‘peasants in black pyjamas’, if you wish, are as fiercely protective of their turf and their freedom as anyone else.

Martin Sheen, that other actor in Coppola’s iconic Vietnam movie, reflects on ‘Charlie’ — the name Americans gave the Vietcong enemy — before he embarks on his journey into the heart of darkness to “terminate Mr Kurtz with extreme prejudice”.

“Every minute I get weaker”, he muses. “And every minute Charlie squats in the bush, he gets stronger”. Maybe it’s true after all that white men can’t jump.

Fawaz Turki is a veteran journalist, lecturer and author of several books, including The Disinherited: Journal of a Palestinian Exile. He lives in Washington D.C.

Pakistani Taliban chief warns against drone attacks

Pakistani Taliban chief warns against drone attacks

Islamabad (dap) – Pakistan Taliban chief Hakimullah Mehsud warned the government in Islamabad of dire consequences if US drone missile strikes continue, media reports said Saturday.

In an audio message purportedly of Mehsud, sent to the reporters via e-mail late Friday, the militant commander said the media was being used by ‘our enemies’ to spread rumours that he had been killed, the Dawn newspaper reported.

Some media reports recently suggested that Mehsud was killed in a drone strike in the South Waziristan tribal district on Thursday. But there has been no confirmation from Pakistani officials or the Taliban of his death.

It is not clear whether the audio message was recorded before or after Thursday.

‘The Pakistan government is letting the blood of innocent people be shed in return for dollars,’ Mehsud said. ‘We are forced to take revenge on the Pakistan government for the killing of innocents.’

The US military has increased its missile attacks against Taliban and al-Qaeda in Pakistan’s tribal region. There have been 10 drone strikes this month alone.

In the latest attacks, 11 people were killed and several more injured in two separate strikes late Friday.

Five people were killed and three injured when a US drone fired four missiles on a house in Mir Ali area in North Waziristan, Dawn reported.

Six people died in the second attack that took place in Mirkhani, an area along the border of North and South Waziristan.

The US missile campaign has eliminated dozens of Taliban and al-Qaeda militants, but it has also killed many civilians.

The loss of innocent lives has fuelled anger among the Pakistani public, which is increasingly pressuring the government to end cooperation with the US if it continues with the drone attacks.

Islamabad officially condemns the US strikes, but many analysts believe the country’s military and intelligence agencies are aiding the US intelligence services with information on possible targets.

Al Gore Brought Secret Science from the CIA Into Environmentalist Scheme

[Why does the CIA need environmental data in the first place?  This is part of the spook plan to access all available data, in order to control as many events as possible, or turn them to the agency’s advantage.  The CIA is a threat to all life on the planet.]

YEATMAN: Secret science from the CIA

By William Yeatman

The CIA has reactivated a Clinton-era program, code-named MEDEA (Measurements of Earth Data for Environmental Analysis), that allows environmental scientists access to classified intelligence. The CIA’s network of measurement technology on satellites, ships and planes is ideal for spying on America’s enemies, but it also is well-suited for data collection in a number of scientific disciplines, including climatology, ecology and geology. In 1992, at the behest of Vice President Al Gore, the CIA granted security clearances to almost 70 scientists, thereby permitting them access to highly classified intelligence-gathering techniques. The scientists were allowed to study archival data and propose innovative uses of CIA resources for scientific research.

Project MEDEA may seem like a free lunch, or at least free science, but it’s not that simple. The rigors of CIA security coexist uneasily with the principles of science. Fundamental to the process of peer review, itself a keystone in the scientific method, is the uninhibited availability of raw data for evaluation by the scientific community. Think of it as a fact check. Research derivative of the CIA, however, is classified. So MEDEA science comes with a disclaimer – literally. A 1996 paper on desertification, based on research from project MEDEA, was accepted for publication by the journal Global Change Biology, but the editors included a notice that “Limitations on access to the data make it impossible for the journal’s usual review process to assess all aspects of data quality, selection, or interpretation.”

In light of the damage done to the reputation of science by the recent “Climategate” scandals – in which data that should have been made public wasn’t and a group of scientists discussed ways to thwart the peer-review process and intimidate peer-reviewed journals, the scientific community should be wary of depending on research where secrecy antithetical to the openness of science appears to be a requirement.

William Yeatman is an energy policy analyst with the Competitive Enterprise Institute and a contributor to