Albion Monitor Issue 165 JANUARY 2008
Albion Monitor
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The presidents of Argentina, Bolivia, Brasil, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Venezuela at the Dec. 10, 2007 formation of the Banco del Sur

U.S. media ignored (or laughed) at Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez for urging his South American allies on Jan. 26 to withdraw their billions of dollars from U.S. banks: "We should start to bring our reserves here," Chavez said. "Why does that money have to be in the north?"

But the banking world wasn't laughing in December, as seven South American countries officially launched the Bank of the South in response to growing opposition to the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and other International Financial Institutions. Starting this year, it plans to begin lending out some $7 billion in its holdings.

It is the greatest single international challenge to U.S. banking interests. As an insider at the Inter-American Development Bank told the Financial Times last year, "With the money of Venezuela and political will of Argentina and Brazil, this is a bank that could have lots of money and a different political approach. No one will say this publicly but we don't like it"

Pentagon Officials Exaggerated Threat in Iran Speedboat Story

Audio recording from open access VHF channel was spliced into a video on which the voice apparently could not be heard

Bush Admin Version of "Iran Incident" Starts to Unravel

Image from Iranian video depicting the Jan. 7 encounter with U.S. warships in the Strait of Hormuz.

Pentagon admits threatening audio could be fake

Pentagon Won't Concede Iran's Role in Calming Iraq Violence

But State Dept. credits Iranian policy decision for Mahdi Army ceasefire

"We Are Haunted By a War Begun Under False Pretenses"

At least 935 false statements from Bush admin leading to the invasion of Iraq

Bush "Signing Statement" Okays Permanent Bases in Iraq

Bush takes $696 billion, rewrites law on how it will be spent

Bush Trying to Lock Next President Into Iraq

Democrats railing against the idea that Bush is in a position to make commitments

"Clean Coal" Project Scrapped Hours After Bush Speech FREE!

State of the Union call for funding followed by cancellation

IMF Predicts Worst Global Economic Downturn in Years

Bush rebates, lower interest rates, not enough to cut it

China Finding Opportunity in U.S. Recession

"If it was not for the subprime mortgage crisis, China could not have dreamed of pumping money into top Wall Street financial institutions"

Mortgage Industry Targeted Minorities for Risky Loans, Says Think Tank

"The subprime lending debacle has caused the greatest loss of wealth to people of color in modern U.S. history"

Day Laborers at Soup Kitchens Another Sign U.S. Economy in Trouble

Hard working illegals hit the hardest as money dries up

U.S. Ramps up Terror War in East

More troops to Afghanistan, while Bush admin reluctantly admits Pakistan is the world's most dangerous place

Real Goal of Bush "Peace" Tour: Beat War Drums Against Iran

U.S. hoping for unlikely Arab-Israeli alliance to counter Iran's rise

The Unfunny War of Charlie Wilson

FREE! What to make of "Charlie Wilson's War?" It makes the U.S. government look like it is populated by a bunch of whoring, drunken sleazebags, so in that sense it's accurate enough. But there are a number of things both the book and the film are suppressing.

Neither a reader of Crile's book, nor a viewer of the film based on his book would know that, in talking about the Afghan freedom fighters of the 1980s, we are also talking about the militants of al-Qaeda and the Taliban of the 1990s and 2000s. Amid all the hoopla about Wilson's going out of channels to engineer secret appropriations of millions of dollars to the guerrillas, the reader or viewer would never suspect that, when the Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan in 1989, President George H.W. Bush promptly lost interest in the place and simply walked away, leaving it to descend into one of the most horrific civil wars of modern times

Egypt Stands Aside as 700,000 Desperate Palestinians Flood Across Gaza Border

Israel furious as medicine, food, fuel reach needy despite blockade

Christian Zionists Feel "Betrayed" by Bush's Road Map

Furious that U.S. now agrees to Palestinan rights to part of Jerusalem

Christian Zionists Buy Access to Israel's Top Leadership

Major funding for immigration and resettlement projects

Bush Mideast Visit Underscores Hamas-Fatah Split

A demonstration against Bush in Gaza

Gaza and Hamas, elected in fair, monitored, vote, shunned

Israel High Court Okays Power, Fuel Shutoff to Gaza FREE!

Palestinians blocked from presenting testimony to show humanitarian impact

Neo-cons Lose Their "Islamofascist Expert" in the Pentagon

Wingnuts quick to claim he's a victim of "political correctness"

New Book Documents Growth of Neo-Con Delusions

Slide from the movement's Trotskyist roots into Ronald Reagan's Republican Party

Musharraf Tries to Pin Blame for Bhutto Assassination on Pro-Taliban Pashtuns

Bhutto called tribe "time-tested friends," did not feel threatened

Afghan Prison Compared to Gitmo

A sketch showing how a 22-year-old Afghan taxi driver named Dilawar was allegedly chained to the ceiling of his cell. He later died in custody (Art by Thomas V. Curtis, a former Reserve M.P. sergeant)

3x more prisoners in "a previously undisclosed warren of isolation cells," Red Cross says

Afghan Journalism Student Sentenced to Death for Internet Posting

Accused of passing around blasphemous articles and "mocking Islam and the Koran"

Pakistan Survey Shows U.S. Intervention Feared More Than Taliban

Only 5 % would welcome U.S. forces in to fight al-Qaeda

Growing Number of Suicide Attacks by Children

Children also used as decoys in suicide car bombings

U.S. TV Foreign News Reporting Back to Pre-9/11 Levels

Even Iraq coverage down to average of 30 minutes a week


Captured Al Qaeda Docs Profile Foreign Fighters in Iraq

Most willing for suicide bomb, largest contingent from Saudi Arabia

Iraqis Say 2 U.S. Soldiers Killed Were Abusing Woman

Witnesses claim Iraqi soldier opened fire on Americans beating woman -- Pentagon claims soldier had links to militants

At One Year, "Surge" Leaves Doubts About Iraq's Future

"Could we have actually made matters worse in the long term?"

Iraqi Police, Soldiers, Sidelined by U.S.-Backed Sunni Fighters

Creating a new vast militia opposed to Maliki's government

U.S. Contractor Abuses in Iraq Rarely Punished, Groups Say

Only 1 prosecution out of 600+ incidents

Iraq Razes Thousands of Acres of Farmland FREE!

Even as food supply collapsing

New Estimate of 151,000 Iraqis Dead in 3 Years of Occupation

Not counting deaths during the period of most intense sectarian violence 2006-2007

Fuel Shortages Leave Iraqis Cold, Unable to Work

Little gasoline available in oil-rich contry


2008 State of the Union: Another Year of the Same

No foreign policy outside of Iraq occupation

Despite Primary Hoopla, Bush'll Still be Around for Another Year FREE!

Through January 20, 2009, and beyond, the Bush White House promises to be the gift that keeps on giving

Florida's Cubans Tell Repubs: You Have to Earn our Vote

Giuliani defeat shows more than a trip through Little Havana is all it takes

Obama Anointed by Kennedy Dynasty

Ted Kennedy reportedly angered by Bill and Hillary's negative campaign

McCain's Two Wars FREE!

Pro Iraq war, anti environmental change - just like Bush

McCain Could Pull Latino Vote Away From Democrats

Well-regarded because of call to treat immigrants "humanely" during the Spanish-language GOP debate

What to Expect from an Obama White House

Would move cautiously and do everything he can to ensure that the tag "liberal" won't be slapped on him

Iowa Youth Push Obama Over the Top

Unlike the slacker apathy for Kerry in 2004

The Five Lessons of Iowa

It's about change, not money -- or race

The "Illegal Immigrant" Skeletons in Romney's Closet

Romney family lived in Mexico for 3 generations

Tourists of the Apocalypse

Tourism companies are now using climate change as a marketing tool: Visit the pacific island paradise of Tuvalu before rising sea levels swallow it in the next 30 to 50 years. See the Arctic while there is still ice and polar bears.

Ecotourism and nature tourism -- which would include "climate tourism" -- is growing perhaps three times faster than the industry in general, estimates Ezaki, of the International Ecotourism Society. While Society members in nearly 100 countries promise to follow a green code of conduct, there is no inspection and no one has ever been kicked out for violations, she says.

Mass tourism, like the typical tropical beach holiday that forms the bulk of the industry, is not sustainable and will continue to be the major problem into the future. National governments will have to step in and make every aspect of mass tourism as green as possible, according to Ezaki

Suharto: The 'Kemusuk Thug' Is Finally Dead

At least 500,000 murdered, hundreds of thousands spent years in prison without clear charges against them

Yushchenko Dioxin Poisoning Remains Unsolved

Yushchenko claims to know who poisoned him, and hinted at the involvement of Ukrainian politicians

Impoverished Serbs Expecting Windfall Fortune

Believe privatization of state industries will make everyone rich

Kenya Violence Continues, Hundreds of Bodies Piled In Morgue

Tribe members under attack since Dec. 30 elections

Beijing Tensions From Advancing Desert and Rising Olympic Construction

Sense of dislocation from enormous transformation

China trying to Expand Into Energy-Rich Disputed Border Areas

Fighting reported in the Gulf of Tonkin as tensions grow with Vietnam and other neighbors

Zapatistas Under Siege From Army, Paramilitary

Native group that disavowed arms facing worst attacks in decade

The Other Women Hostages in Colombia

63 women held in Colombia prisons, most only because they live in rebel-controlled areas

Operation Condor Reached Into Peru, New Documents Show

U.S.-backed plan to kidnap, murder and "disappear" leftists and other alleged "subversives"

Bush Admin Rushes to Approve Oil Wells Before Polar Bear Status Change FREE!

Lease sale covers some 29.7 million acres off northwestern Alaska

India's Ultra-Cheap Car: More Problem Than Promise

Just what the world needs: a new vehicle with inadequate safety features and emission standards

Mountains of Garbage in Italy as Dumps Close FREE!

Garbage piled on a Naples street

The Italian government estimates over 250,000 metric tons of garbage on the curbs since Xmas

Malaysia Orders Certain Arabic Words Only for use by Muslims

Heightened fears the country is sliding into a Taliban-style theocracy

Defense Contractor Gets Contract 2 Months After Making Former Pentagon Exec a VP

Former Rumsfeld aide helped create the very office that issued the contract.

Affordable Housing Activists Tasered, Arrested at New Orleans Hearing

Some tasered right in front of City Council speaker's podium



Joe Conason Back Off, Bill

That Dismal Democratic Debate

McCain's Chances Rest on "Progress" in Iraq

The Coming Attack on Barack

Why Bloomberg?


Robert Scheer Voting for Hillary In Spite of Herself

Who Will Take on the Banks?

Those Ungrateful Saudis

Playing the Class Card

What "Good Time Charlie" Brought


Alexander Cockburn Hillary and McCain Both Party Outcasts

Obama's Latino Vote Problem

Clinton Knives Come out for Obama

Women to the Rescue for Hillary

Obama, Huckabee and the Also-Rans


Steve Young Lords of Loud Attempt Satire, Fail

Radio Talkers Eat Their Own, Part II

Mark Levin Threatens Expose of O'Reilly "Porn"

Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert: Do As I Say, Not As I DO

Crossing The Line Is Crossing The Line: No Exceptions


FREE! Philip Agee, former agent of the CIA, died in Havana, Cuba, on January 8, 2008 at the age of 72. He was the first agent to leave "The Company" and reveal its dirty secrets, having become disillusioned with its appalling practices in Latin America.

Agee gave a speech in Stockholm on September 24 2001 that analyzed the likely consequences of the terror attacks in New York and Washington. "It means important changes within the United States," Agee prophetically said, "because the war on terrorism will serve as the justification for restraints on civil liberties. They are building a huge crisis in the United States. They are building the psychological climate for broad-based acceptance of an ongoing war, for which there will be no quick resolution. There will be no great battles, either.

"It is early days to draw any conclusions about how all this is going to develop, since it is still in the planning stage. But in my opinion, if they carry out this military solution -- with an attack or a series of attacks, or the establishment of military bases in Islamic countries -- they will be doing exactly what bin Laden wants them to do. It would turn more and more people to fundamentalism and to his organization"

Albion Monitor
Issue 165

Editor: Jeff Elliott (

The Albion Monitor is currently published as an ongoing newspaper by Wayward Press Inc, POB 1733, Sebastopol, CA 95473

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