Politics April 2004
4/26/04 Politics. ( londontimes | newsau | herald | washtimes ) According to the London Times, 25 March 2004, "ONE of al-Qaeda's most dangerous figures has been revealed as a double agent working for MI5 ..." You read that right. What are we to make of a connection between al Qaeda and the British intelligence agency? Did he fool them, or is it as one site claims:
"Al Qaeda" was CREATED BY GOVERNMENT INTELLIGENCE AGENCIES to drive you into a war on the Arabs and Arab oil you otherwise would have refused. You have been snookered, conned, flim-flammed, hoaxed, scammed, deceived, fooled, swindled..."
"Britain ignored warnings from friendly governments about Abu Qatada's links with terrorist groups and refused to arrest him." "Spain, France, Italy, Germany, the United States and Jordan all asked to question Abu Qatada about his links to al-Qaida but were refused."
Abu Qatada (photo above) is described as the radical Muslim cleric at the center of the UK's al Qaeda web. After the attacks of September 11, Abu stated in a sermon that the attacks were part of a wider battle between Christendom and Islam.
Mohammed al-Gerbouzi, 44, a student of Abu Qatada, has been accused of raising £40m for al-Qaida. After the Madrid bombings and the arrests of a number of Moroccans Gerbouzi's name again surfaced according to the guardian.uk. Now that we know Abu Qatada was a double agent for British Intelligence and al Quaeda, one hopes that MI5 was not involved in the bombings in Spain.
Positive Thinking: The web of deception is unraveling, otherwise, we wouldn't be seeing this in the news (however briefly and under played). People have been tricked so much now (Eg. by spam ) that they are starting to wake up. There are plenty of people on both sides who want peace between these two religions. The terrorism war doesn't have to be forever if we find the roots.
4/29/04 Politics (Caltech | CNN) Here is a new twist on people holding politicians accountable. A group called the Center for American Progress has a searchable database of lies. Browse some faces of those who gave their lives in this war. Will we ever evolve to the point where we can solve our problems without killing eacother?
4/26/04 Politics A new flag for Iraq. For those of you who like flag waving, now there is another flag in the world, or there might be if things settle down.
I didn't get the part about the yellow stripe representing the Kurdish population. Why is that? Around here a yellow stripe is not always seen as a positive thing, but I assume the yellow in this case has some positive meaning.
4/20/04 Politics. We have him, but Iraq is still a mess. Bush spared no expense to get Saddam. News stories about Saddam's capture point to the likelyhood that our side tortured people to find him. I had a psychic vision that Bush flew to Iraq to torture the man who tried to have his father killed. Would this be possible? We do know that Bush flew secretly to Iraq. "Air Force One, with its lights turned off for security reasons, touched down at Baghdad International Airport at 5:31 p.m. (9:31 a.m. EST) and taxied to a remote corner of the airport." - CNN
That was Thursday, November 27, 2003, coincidentally just 19 days before a story that Saddam himself was held at Baghdad Airport. (Monday, December 15, 2003. - ABC ) Officially, Saddam was captured on Sunday, December 14, 2003 but one never knows the truth in war news. Was he really captured a few weeks eariler? I just had a hunch about this, but when I searched, I found this: "many in the Arab world believe that Saddam was not in fact arrested on Saturday, December 13, but at least ten days beforehand, and arguments raised in defense of this notion are surely worth mentioning." - prisonplanet
Did Bush really spend only 2.5 hours in Iraq and then head back to Washington?
We hear today (April 20, 2004) that there will be a tribunal in Iraq. I'd be surprised if he is able to walk at his trial. Perhaps this vision I've had is crazy? I ask you, do we treat even the most evil prisoners with due human rights? I doubt it. If we do not, do the ends justify the means? Consider this opinion:
When he sits in the defendant's dock and hears the charges against him, he can say: "Yes, I had people tortured. But those people were a threat to the good society I was trying to create. Sometimes, unfortunately, one must use bad means to achieve a good end. Every government leader knows that. Surely George W. Bush knows it." If we respond, "Yeah, but we only used a little torture, and you are REALLY evil," we will flunk Ethics 101. Until we demand to know the truth about Saddam's capture and are prepared to speak the dirty little T-word, we have already flunked Ethics 101..
4/20/04 Human Rights If you really think the US does not torture its 2 million+ prisoners, read this:
"Stun Tech literature claims that its high pulse stunbelt can be activated from 300 feet. After a warning noise, the Remote Electronically Activated Control Technology (REACT) belt inflicts a 50,000 volt shock for 8 seconds."
"The Remote Electronically Activated Control Technology (REACT) belt inflicts a powerful electric current through the wearer's left kidney which then passes through the victim's blood and entire nervous system. The shock causes severe pain and incapacitation in the first few seconds."
It is a product of Stun Tech Incorporated of Cleveland, Ohio. Introduced in the USA in the early '90s, by 1996 it was reportedly in use by the US Bureau of Prisons, the US Marshals' Service, and 16 state correctional agencies incl. those of Alaska, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Ohio, and Washington. (The pain belt) is also used during judicial hearings (eg in 1998, against Ronald Hawkins in Los Angeles for frequently interrupting Judge Joan Comparet-Cassani at a sentencing hearing )."
Two US companies have produced remote-controlled electro-shock stun belts, and the belts have increasingly been used on defendants appearing in court, with presiding judges sometimes holding the remote-control. The belts ...(cause) instant immobilization, self-defecation and self-urination and leaves welts.
"More than 15 states and 100 counties across the country strap inmates into the REACT stun belt, according to Dennis Kaufman, president of Cleveland, Ohio-based Stun-Tech Inc., the belt's manufacturer. ... Hawkins ... did not try to escape from the Long Beach courtroom. He did not attack a lawyer. He did not lunge at a witness. His courtroom offense that outraged Municipal Judge Joan Comparet-Cassani was talking too much. ... In a courtroom, the device is worn under clothing so jurors will not know it is in use." - LA Times
I found legit news references including video at CNN (they only show a few seconds, not the full 8 second zap) plus cases in the US cited at Amnesty International. There is no company web site or photos of the device, but we ARE using torture belts. You thought the shock device worn by Capt. James T. Kirk in the original Star Trek series was science fiction? The aliens who keep human beings in cages and treat them like cattle are real. Unfortunately they are members of own species. The note below, found here, is also interesting. Another site creatively calls this device "THE INTESTINEIZER".
"Inmate Notification Of Custody Control Belt Use"
You are hereby advised that you are being required to wear an electronic restraint belt. This belt discharges 50,000 volts of electricity. By means of a remote transmitter, an attending officer has the ability to activate the stun package attached to the belt, thereby causing the following results to take place:
1. Immobization causing you to fall to the ground.
2. Possibility of self-defecation.
3. Possibility of self-urination.
FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH THE OFFICER DIRECTIONS COULD LEAD TO ANY OF THE ABOVE.*
The belt could be activated under the following actions on your behalf and notification is hereby made:
A. Any tampering with the belt.
B. Failure to comply with staff's verbal order to halt movement of your person.
C. Any attempt to escape custody.
D. Any attempt to inflict serious bodily harm on another person.
E. Any loss of visual contact by the officer in charge.
I UNDERSTAND THE ABOVE INFORMATION AND ACKNOWLEDGE BEING ADVISED OF THE SAME.
The above form was taken from Bureau of Prisons (BOP) policy statement # P.S. 5558.10 dated Sept. 30, 1994.
*It is notable that this document fails to mention other possible side effects such as heart attacks, permanent twitching, memory loss, vomiting, etc. by kevin c. pyle
So, Saddam was evil because he tortured people and we had to put a stop to that, right? Great. We did stop Saddam, but why stop there? Let's stop torture here too. As the alien said in StarTrek, "The customs and history of your race show a unique hatred of captivity. Even when it's pleasant and benevolent, you prefer death." I'm sure that 50,000 volt shocks also go a tad beyond unpleasant.
Take a prisoner secretly jailed under the Patriot Act who might actually be a normal innocent person in the wrong place at the wrong time and subject him or her to this torture a few times and I'll wager that person becomes dangerous or suicidal very quickly. Think the guards won't abuse the device? Ha. Don't make me laugh.
I personally witnessed an otherwise sane individual go nuts and enjoy shocking mokeys at a research facility with a stun gun. In fact, I lost a job for writing a report about his abuse of the animals. The guy who did it was the head of his department, quite a head honcho. He was cussing at this strapped down animal, really enjoying the pain he caused ... just because he could. I was only a few feet from him and it made me sick. Perhaps the monkey insulted him, I don't know. I do know human nature. I've seen it. Give someone a button that causes great pain or even death and they will push it. This kind of stuff really is depressing. Is humanity a lost cause? Are we "too violent and dangerous a species"? Probably so. Unfortunately, violence and insanity goes up with population density.
Positive thinking: There are plenty of good people, even in the prison system, who do stop human rights abuses by speaking up.
4/19/04 Politics According to "The Museum of Hoaxes" by Alex Boese, in 1782 a shocking letter in the Supplement to the Boston Independent Chronicle alleged that Indian warriors were sending hundreds of American scalps as war trophies to British royalty and members of Parliament. The scalps included those of women, young boys and girls. Actually, both the story and the newspaper itself were fake, printed by Franklin to aid the American war effort.
Fed up with lies and war? There is nothing new under the sun. Deception is common in the animal kingdom. "A typical scenario might go like this: one chimp, seeing a second chimp approach, hides some food. The second chimp, apparently taken in, ambles off but then hides behind a tree, only to rush in and snatch the food when the first chimp retrieves his stash." Balancing our ability to lie is our innate desire for truth from others. If we can lie while getting others to tell the truth, we will have the biggest advantage in the war for more bananas. However, if we are seen as lying, others will not share truth. A classic dilemma.
4/7/04 Poltics ( Develnet ) Political humor. Q&A about Iraq and other countries.
4/6/04 Politics Check out Air America, which will be an alternative to conservative hate radio like Rush Limbaugh. Listen to Al Franken's new program The O'Franken Factor, which will air weekdays at noon beginning March 31.
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