Albion Monitor Issue 123 JUNE 2004

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What happened on June 28 was a re-arrangement by the U.S. government in Iraq in hope that the United States can deny moral and political responsibility for what might later happen. The reason for moving the date forward seems obvious to people in Iraq -- to avoid a violent attack -- and few questioned the wisdom of it. Many, including members of Iraq's new cabinet, were so taken by surprise by the unexpected handover that they failed to make it to the brief ceremony.

 + U.S. Rush For Exit Caught Iraq By Surprise

 + Iraq Handover Sans Sovereignty

 + Attacks Taper Off In Days Before Iraq "Handover"

 + U.S. Pushed Through Decrees That Leave Iraq With Little Cash, Much Debt
 + Last Minute Laws Restrict Iraqi Powers FREE!

Chaos in Sadr City
Life in Sadr City, May 19, 2004
Iraqi Police Force Corrupt, Badly Trained FREE!
Too weak to fight crime, terrorism and to guard borders

No Truth To Saddam- Al Qaeda Link, 9/11 Panel Says
As Cheney and Bush redouble efforts to insist thin circumstantial evidence is proof
Supreme Court Ruling Favors Cheney in Energy Case FREE!
Now case goes back to appeals court

The New Neo-Con View: Radical Islam May Be Foe In Revived Cold War
Treating Osama and his cohorts as if they were Bolsheviks or Stalinists will solve everything

"Torture Is Legal," Pentagon Report Argues FREE!
Central point of report literally makes President "above the law"

UN Resolution On Iraq Sovereignty A Major Bush Defeat FREE!
Negotiated in shadow of prison abuse news, U.S. had few cards to play

Bush Wins Iraq Sovereignty Vote In UN, Now Wants Immunity From War Crimes Court
New effort to exempt U.S. from International Criminal Court
Facing Defeat, Bush Withdraws Bid For Exemption From War Crimes Court FREE!
Abu Ghraib torture even disturbed China
Iraqi On Iraqi Violence In Fallujah Signals Trouble After U.S. Retreats FREE!
Rebels show no hesitancy to fight pro-U.S. Iraqi police

Arab Leaders Wary Of New Iraqi Regime
Only welcoming voice came from Iran

U.S. Proposal To UN: No Real Sovereignty For Iraq
"Being sovereign is like being pregnant: you either are or you aren't"
Thousands Of Homeless Children Living In Baghdad Streets FREE!
Most from state-run orphanages that closed after overthrow of Saddam

Bad News Aside, Neo-Cons Demand Bold Attack On Insurgents
Want renewed front against "Baathist dead-enders," "Islamo-fascists," and "foreign fighters"

As Insurgency Spreads, Value Of "The Bremer Dinar" Dives
Replacement for Saddam dinars now almost worthless

U.S. Companies Depend On Latins For Iraq Security
30,000 Chileans to protect American companies under Pentagon contract

Iraqi Ex-Prisoners Sue Two Private Security Companies
Lawsuits filed in U.S. under RICO Act

The Thousands Who Shouldn't Be In Iraqi Prisons
"The Americans don't know the people so they don't know who their enemies are"

Troubling Silence Over Beheading In Arab Media
Al Qaeda and its ideas are no longer perceived as extreme

Radio Dijla
Iraqis have lots to say on Radio Dijla, Baghdad's first private radio station
Pentagon Needs, But Abuses, "Green Card" Recruits
40,000 foreign nationals in the U.S. military
Independent Baghdad Radio Station Gives Voice To Iraqis FREE!
Iraqis are eager to share their views on unique talk radio station

Afghan Situation Grim And Getting Grimmer
U.S. troops pour in, presumably to find bin Laden before U.S. elections

U.S. The "Red Thread" That Runs Between Global Rights Abuses, Says Amnesty
A "pervasive culture of attack on global values, standards and institutions"

U.S. Tries To Convince Worldwide Firms That Iraq Is Open For Business
U.S. Commerce Dept. busy with roadshow to sell the New Iraq

Groups Sue Pentagon To Release All Info On Iraq Abuses
Pentagon refused to release info last year

Halliburton Under Fire For Iraq Military Deals
Brand-new trucks worth $85,000 abandoned if they got a flat tire

Pentagon Auditors Urge Cutoff Of Payments To Halliburton
Allegedly overcharged $160 million for food

U.S. Protecting Infamous Arms Dealer Who Is Aiding Iraq Occupation
Major trafficker in weapons supplying Africa's civil wars

Islamic Fundamentalism Takes Root In Syria
New "Islamic awakening" a reaction to U.S. actions in Iraq, Afghanistan

Saddam Trial Will Indict West For Weapons Sales
"Some day those who supplied him will also have to stand trial"

On 15th Anniversary, China Still Trying To Ignore Tiananmen
Not a single wreath or gesture of grief allowed

Millions Of Refugees Worldwide Warehoused For Over A Decade
Hard to track because borders often not crossed

Israel Expected To Resume Gaza Offensive
Attacks on Rafah seen as army revenge for deaths of 13 soldiers
Afghan Opium And Heroin Causing Drug Abuse Crisis In Central AsiaFREE!
Alarm over women and children being drawn into drug culture

Tensions Grow Over New Bush Embargo On Cuba
Seen as ploy to secure votes of Florida voting bloc

Abortion Records Safe From Feds, For Now
Justice Department demands for women's medical records

California Tribes Fight For Water, Salmon Rights
Lawsuit from Central Valley farmers puts burden on tribes to prove damage in distant headwaters

Caribbean Nations To Probe Haiti Coup
Victory for small countries united in call to investiate overthrow

International Aid Begins Trickling To Haiti
After coup d'etat, storms and floods that killed hundreds

Israeli Army Storms Rafah Refugee Camp
Palestinian boy killed in Rafah
Seventeen of those killed during the May 19 peace march in Rafah, according to the UN, were children under 18

History hangs heavy in the air in Rafah where a little over half the population consists of 1948 refugees or their descendants, and where some have been made homeless for the second or third time during the current intifada. The single greatest upheaval in Rafah since 1948 came with the Israeli occupation in 1967. Those who remember that time were eager to point out that Tal al-Sultan was mostly built by the Israeli army in 1971 as alternative housing for those who had been made homeless by a similar campaign in the early 1970s to clear out the refugee camps and widen the roads to allow tank access. At least 45 Palestinians were killed during Operation Rainbow in May, including at least ten when Israeli tank shells and/or helicopter-borne missiles slammed into demonstrators who had gathered on May 19 to try to walk into Tal al-Sultan

Arab World Outraged By Bush Tepid Response To Rafah Attacks
Murder of protesters, Palestinian children was "troubling" to him

Israel Arrests Brit Reporter Who Exposed Secret Nuke ProgramFREE!
Seized by agents of Israel's Shin Beit internal security service

Diplomats Puzzled By Iran Skirmishes With Three Nations In Persian Gulf
Unexplained sea battles with United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Oman

U.S. Steps Up Pressure On Al-Jazeera
Too much media freedom in Iraq, State Dept. complains

Al-Jazeera Top News Source Even In Kurdish Iraq
Focus on breaking news draws wide audience

Kurds Threaten to Separate From Iraq
Upset that UN Security Council resolution makes no mention of Kurdish rights

Kurd Unrest Spreads To Syria
200,000 Kurds living within the country demanding autonomy

"9/11 Skeptics" Hold Gathering In Toronto
Conspiracy theories "play into the hands of George Bush"

Medicaid Coverage Disappears For Poor Women
Only breast and cervical cancer victims have treatment meeting federal guidelines

Coca-Cola Among Companies Using Sugar Harvested By Child Labor
Child labor rampant on El Salvador's sugar cane plantations

Russian nuclear plant
A worker checks the reactor fuel storage pool at a Russian nuclear plant where investigators successfully smuggled in a fake bomb

PHOTO: Thomas Nilsen/ Bellona

Even Without Top Post, Sonia Gandhi Leaves Her Mark
Brave action took wind out of opponents who would have divided India

Olympics Mean Extra Pressure On Sweatshop Workers
17-hours shifts over six consecutive days at one factory

Call Sudan "Genocide," Rights Group Asks Colin Powell
"Nowhere else in the world are so many lives at stake as in Darfur at the moment"

Darfur Region Of Sudan Called World's Worst Humanitarian Crisis
Government sponsoring attacks on non-Arab African communities
Nuclear Waste Piling Up At Russia's Poorly-Guarded Facilities FREE!
U.S. paying over a dozen countries to ship nuke fuel to Russia where it could be easily stolen by terrorists

Go-Ahead For Venezuela Recall Election
Over 20 percent of voters signed referendum petition

Venezuela's Chavez And Supporters Gird For Pivotal Vote
"What could be the dirtiest electoral campaign in national history"

Politics As Usual
"Fahrenheit 9/11" Certain To Be Factor On Voting Day
Likely to especially fire up the cynical young and the economically ignored
Nobel Laureates Endorse Kerry, Blast Bush For Ignoring Science FREE!
"We need a President who believes in science again in America," Kerry said

Bush Must Go, Say 27 Retired Diplomats And Officers
Inspired by a similar protest by 51 British ambassadors and senior government officials

Bush Wraps Himself In Reagan's Flag As Polls Sink
The big question is whether the warm glow can last long enough for Bush's approval rating to rise

Another Florida Election Fiasco Possible, ACLU Warns
State cannot guarantee that 2000 election false felon ID problems fixed

Both Parties See Businesswomen As A Key Voting Bloc
Women certain to be key swing vote nationwide

Law Of The Sea Treaty Held Hostage By Radical Right Senators
Neo-cons and UN-haters want no juristiction over U.S. actions on high seas

Was Tenet Pushed From Office, Or Did He Jump?
"They want to use him as a scapegoat for everything that's gone wrong"

Chalabi's Downfall Signals Rout Of Neo-Cons
Once favorite son finds no patrons remain in Bush Administration

Debunking Ronald Reagan
Reagan was indeed a historic figure, and his death deserves the massive media attention it received. But the odes to his cheerfulness and optimism should be replaced with reflections on how his policies destroyed lives

 + Remembering The Real Reagan FREE!

 + Bush & Crew Learned "Class Warfare" Tactics From Reagan
 + Reagan's Homeless FREE!
 + ROBERT PARRY: The Iran-Contra Coverup FREE!

 + Waiting For The Death Truck In Nicaragua
 + Reagan's Destructive Revolution FREE!

 + Reagan Administration Aided Saddam's Worst Genocide

 + ALEXANDER COCKBURN: Reagan's Blur Between Truth And Fiction
 + Gorby Took Lead Role In Ending Cold War FREE!
 + TED RALL: The Worst Years Of Our Lives FREE!

 + Reagan's Legacy Of Woes In Afghanistan, Pakistan
 + The Man Who Taught The GOP That Image Is Everything FREE!

President Reagan listens as members of the Tower Commission explain the Iran-Contra charges that could have led to impeachment. At the time, most Americans thought Reagan was lying when he said he didn't recall authorizing the illegal operation

Iranian-born Mehran Karimi-Nasseri is a man without a country and a symbol of immigrants worldwide whose troubles are trivialized in the Steven Spielberg film, "The Terminal"
Bolivia Charges Enron, Shell With Illegal Gas Deal
Allegedly had clandestine operation to divert natural gas to Enron plant in Brazil

Mexico's Oil Company Could Be Bankrupt By 2005
State-owned oil firm pays 70% of earnings to government, which Mexico says it needs to meet budget

Fear Spreads In California Central Valley Over INS Sweeps
"The INS says it's a matter of homeland security. That's bullshit. These are just working people"

Brazillian Families Say Bloody Prison Riot Was Premediated
"It's a way of doing away with prisoners without using the police"

Mafia Kidnapping Sicily's Water
Up to half of water wasted because no interest in repairing damaged systems

Spielberg's "Terminal" Trivializes Global Immigrant Problem
Karimi-Nasseri's tragic story is entirely different from bittersweet comedy

Heads Should Roll At FDA Over Emergency Contraceptive Ban
Even FDA officials admit that this decision was irregular

"Overseas America" Presents Face Of Empire, Not Democracy
Outside U.S. borders lies "Overseas America," led by a largely unaccountable Pentagon

Tenet Or Not, CIA Must Learn Mideast's "Secret Language"
Fails to grasp a Middle East where America is regarded with mixed love and loathing

Death Of A Patriot FREE!
Alzheimer's disease claims the life of a great American Patriot: David Dellinger

Why I Burned My Israeli Military Papers
Occupation has no place in future of Israel

Wanted: A Few Sages And Seers
Today's chaotic world needs new interpreters who can work between disparate cultures and faiths

Iraq "Supermax" Prison No Change From Abu Ghraib
"Supermax" prisons in the United States are far from humane

MOLLY     IVINS Molly Ivins

 + Happy 4th To All Of Us, Grumps And Cheney Alike
 + Jack Ryan And Repub Family Values
 + Speak Out Now On Electronic Voting
 + You'd Have Trouble Keeping The Story Straight, Too
 + Stealth Attack On Arizona's Clean Election Law
 + Why Don't I Feel Comforted?
 + Bush Loses Any Claim To High Ground By Justifying Torture
 + Bush Goes Out Of His Way To Screw Veterans
 + F------g Over Grandma Millie
 + A $60 Million Fine? No Sweat

 + Born Under a Cloud of Irony
 + No Letup From Repeating The Big Lie
 + Justify Torture, Get A Promotion
 + Reagan: A Nice Guy's Nasty Policies
 + Electorate Is Wising Up To The Iraq Blunder

 } Robert Scheer

 + Nader Adrift
 + Fascism Creeps In More Often Than Marching In With Jackboots
 + Supporters Should Stop Painting Kerry, Bush As Perfect
 + Media's Sin of Omission In Reverent Reagan Coverage
 + Nader and the Green Party's Presidential Choice for 2004

 } Norman Solomon

 + The Usual Suspects From El Norte Target Venezuela's Chavez
 + No Kindly Grandpa, Reagan Was Cold, Indifferent
 + Bye-Bye Boonville

 } Alexander Cockburn

 + Talk Radio Rips Moore - For Being Too Much Like Them
 + The Outrage Of Selective Outrage
 + Talk Radio Turned Reagan's Coffin Into Soapbox

 } Steve Young

Steve Young and Sean Hannity
Steve Young with Lord of Loud Sean Hannity, author of "Deliver Us From Evil." It's liberals that are much of what Sean is attempting to 'deliver us from' and if it takes shouting down the truth, well, for the good of those being saved, sometimes truth be damned

I'm the liberal that Hannity actually allows to get a word in. I'm the Hollywood lefty who makes O'Reilly laugh -- and gets invited back. I'm the talking head on Fox News who refuses to answer the host's stupid questions seriously. But even when I won the battle, they won the war. It's their battlefield and the weapons and rules of talk radio are so far in favor of the host that you don't stand a chance.

Albion Monitor
Issue 123

Editor: Jeff Elliott (
Publisher: Darryl Trujillo (

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