Saturday, March 06, 2010

How Western anti-Muslim bigotry became respectable

More at The Real News


Sener Akturk is a political scientist and fellow at the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, lectures at the Department of Government, both at Harvard University. .

Mujeeb Khan is affiliated with the doctoral program in political science at the University of California Berkeley. He wrote a chapter in the book The New Crusades: Constructing the Muslim Enemy..

How Western anti-Muslim bigotry became respectable

The historic roots of a newly resilient ideology Pt.2

Are Muslims getting a fair deal in India?

More at The Real News

Are Muslims getting a fair deal in India?

The Doha Debates staged an audacious discussion on discrimination against Muslims in India

A Guide to the 9/11 Whistleblowers: Courageous insiders, gagged, hounded and ignored

Global Research, March 5, 2010
by James Corbett

When losing a discussion on the facts of 9/11, a so-called 9/11 "debunker" will often rely on an old canard to "prove" that 9/11 could not have been an inside job: "So many people want their quarter hour of fame that even the Men in Black couldn't squelch the squealers from spilling the beans," write self-satisfied defenders of the government story. According to the logic of this argument, if there are no 9/11 whistleblowers then 9/11 was not an inside job.

So what if there are 9/11 whistleblowers? What if these whistleblowers come from every level of government and private industry, individuals who have even had their cases vindicated by internal government reports? As you are about to see, there are numerous such whistleblowers and each one is a thorn in the side of those who want to pretend that the 9/11 Commission represents the sum total of knowledge on the 9/11 attacks.

That is precisely why these whistleblowers are not lauded by legislators or trumpeted by the media, but actively suppressed by government officials and the corporate media alike. These courageous insiders have been sidelined, gagged, hounded from their positions and ignored to the point where their stories are virtually unknown among the general public. And that is exactly why it is vital for the alternative media to make these stories known by bypassing the filters and control of the establishment media.

In an effort to draw more attention to the critical issues and troubling questions raised by the testimony of these insiders, The Corbett Report has just released a documentary exploration of key government and corporate whistleblowers, including a discussion of whistleblower protection and what the public can do to facilitate a wider distribution and awareness of this information. Download an mp3 audio file of the documentary or listen to it in the player below:

The 9/11 Whistleblowers

The 9/11 Commission
- The myth that the 9/11 commission report represents an adequate investigation into the events of 9/11 is perhaps best exposed by the commissioners themselves, 6 out of 10 of whom have questioned the commission and its conclusions personally (namely Kean and Hamilton, Kerrey, Roemer,Lehman and Cleland). Commission co-chairman Thomas Kean once famously remarked that the Commission was "set up to fail." Commission members considered bringing criminal charges against Pentagon officials who had deliberately lied to them about the military's complete lack of response on that day. One of the commissioners, Max Cleland, even resigned because the commission had been "deliberately compromised by the president of the United States."

911 Commissioner Bob Kerrey claims 911 was a 30 year conspiracy

Richard Andrew Grove - In 2000, Richard Andrew Grove was working for Silverstream Software, a software development company specializing in enterprise architecture software. By October of that year he had landed the firm their largest client in the company's history: Marsh & McLennan. He was invited to a staff meeting in Marsh's offices on the 98th floor of the World Trade Center. It was the 11th of September, 2001. And everyone who was in attendance at the meeting died there that day. Grove, who had been late for the meeting, survived. His remarkable story, as well assubsequent events, led him to start piecing together how 9/11 helped financial institutions and insurance companies cover up billions of dollars in fraud by eliminating those who were asking questions about it.

Richard Grove, Wall Street Whistleblower

Sibel Edmonds - In the wake of 9/11, Sibel Edmonds heeded the FBI's call for Middle Eastern language experts to support their counterterrorism unit. Fluent in Turkish and Azerbaijani and conversational in Farsi, she joined the FBI as a translator on September 15, 2001. She soon discovered gross negligence and criminal conspiracy in the FBI and State Department, including deliberately mistranslated documents in the Bureau's possession before 9/11 that contained information about the attacks, nuclear spies being facilitated by top government officials and foreign operatives who were taken in for questioning after 9/11 being released because they were connected to those spy rings. A 2005 report from the Office of the Inspector General determined that none of Edmonds' allegations can be refuted. In 2009, Edmonds revealed that Osama Bin Laden had been working for U.S. intelligence right up to the day of 9/11.

Sibel Edmonds: Bin Laden Worked for U.S. Right Up Until 9/11 PT1

William Bergman - In August 2001 the Federal Reserve Board of Governors issued a non-routine supervisory letter warning Fed banks to be vigilant in monitoring suspicious activity reports. At the same time, the United States' economy was experiencing its largest June-August spike in M1 money supply since 1947, with more than $5 billion being added to the currency in circulation over that period. Piecing this information together at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago two years later, economist Bill Bergman wondered if the sudden infusion of currency might have been an indicator of foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks, as those with assets in danger of being frozen in the wake of such an attack would naturally want to liquidate their holdings before an investigation could occur. When Bergman wrote to the Board of Governors to ask for clarification as to why they had issued their supervisory letter, he was told that he had committed "an egregious breach of protocol in calling the Board staff and asking the question."

Coleen Rowley - When the so-called "20th hijacker" Zaccharias Moussaoui was detained on August 15th, 2001, agents in the Minneapolis FBI field office immediately sought a criminal warrant to search his belongings. Management at the FBI dealing with the request threw up numerous obstacles to the agents, and even withheld information from them, including the now-infamous Phoenix Memowritten by an agent in Arizona warning of terrorists training in flight schools for a possible upcoming attack. The request was denied and agents were prevented from searching Moussaoui's laptop, which contained information that would have tipped the FBI off to the 9/11 plot. The Minneapolis field office Chief Counsel,Coleen Rowley, has been very public with her disgust at the conduct of FBI management during the case and its subsequent review, and she has supported causes like NYC CAN which seek to re-open the 9/11 investigation.

9/11 Redux: Coleen Rowley

J. Michael Springmann - A 20-year veteran of the State Department's Foreign service, J. Michael Springmann served 18 months as the head of the visa section at the U.S. consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia in 1988-89. During that time he repeatedly rejected visa applications from unqualified individuals only to have his decisions overturned by the head of the consulate. When he returned to Washington, he discovered that the Jeddah consulate was being used as a place for funnelling Afghan mujahedeen into the U.S. for training, facilitated by the CIA on behalf of their asset, Osama bin Laden. The Jeddah consulate would be the very office that issued 15 of the alleged 9/11 hijackers' visas to enter the United States. After numerous complaints up the chain of command, Springmann's contract with the State Department was not renewed.

Jeddah, Visa Express & J. Michael Springmann

Robert Wright - In the 1990s, Special Agent Robert Wright of the FBI's Chicago field office spearheaded an investigation into terrorist financing codenamed Vulgar Betrayal. The investigation uncovered information about Yassin Al-Qadi, a terrorist financier who would go on to be designated a global terrorist financier by the U.S. treasury in the wake of 9/11. Vulgar Betrayal led to information about the African embassy bombings in 1998 and resulted in the seizure of $1.4 million of terrorist financing. Despite the investigation's remarkable success, however, Wright was taken off of Vulgar Betrayal in 1999 and reduced to a paper pusher. In 2002, Wright went public with information about how his investigations had been systematically starved for funds, hindered and obstructed by FBI management and revealed that he believes 9/11 could have been prevented if he had been allowed to continue his investigation. The Bureau prevented him from releasing a book about his experience. He was threatened with legal action if he revealed any details about what he had been investigating.

VIDEO: Robert Wright Judicial Watch briefing

Indira Singh - As a risk management consultant for J.P. Morgan in 2001, Indira Singh was tasked with implementing the next generation of risk management software for the firm. Working for one of the largest financial institutions in the world, Singh wanted to choose a reputable software vendor for the task, one with a proven track record of working with the sensitive information of important clients. She solicited a presentation from Ptech, an enterprise architecture software firm whose clients included some of the most sensitive departments in the U.S. government, including the FBI, the Department of Defense, the Treasury, the IRS, the US Navy and the White House. After performing due diligence on the company, Singh discovered that it had been started in part by funds from Yassin Al-Qadi (the same Specially Designated Global Terrorist that Robert Wright's investigation had been focused on). She discovered many other disturbing links between Ptech officers and suspected terrorist organizations. Ptech had been conducting tests on the interoperability of FAA and NORAD computer systems in the event of an emergency on the morning of 9/11. When she tried to bring this information to the FBI in Boston she was told by one agent that she was in a better position to investigate the case than the Bureau was.

Indira Singh Testimony

Indira Singh Testimony (1/2)

Friday, March 05, 2010

Mossad’s Murderous Reach: The Larger Political Issues

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Mossad’s Murderous Reach: The Larger Political Issues

On January 19 Israel’s international secret police, the Mossad, sent an eighteen member death squad to Dubai using European passports, supposedly ‘stolen’ from Israeli dual citizens and altered with fake photos and signatures, in order to assassinate the Palestinian leader, Mahmoud al Mabhouh.
. - 21.02.10

The evidence is overwhelming: The Dubai police presentation of detailed security videos of the assassins was corroborated by the testimony of Israeli security experts and applauded by Israel’s leading newspapers and columnists. The Mossad openly stated that Mabhouh was a high priority target who had survived three previous assassination attempts. Israel did not even bother to deny the murder. Furthermore, the sophisticated communication system used by the killers, the logistics and planning surrounding their entry and exit from Dubai and the scope and scale of the operation have all the characteristics of a high-level state operation.

Furthermore, only Mossad would have access to the European passports of its dual citizens! Only Mossad would have the capacity, motivation, stated intent and willingness to provoke a diplomatic row with its European allies, knowing full well that Western European governments’ anger would blow over because of their deep links to Israel. After meticulous investigation and the interrogation of 2 captured Palestinian Mossad collaborators, the Dubai police chief has stated he is sure the Mossad was behind the killing.

The Larger Political Issues

Israel’s policy of overseas assassination raises profound issues that threaten the basis of the modern state: sovereignty, rule of law and national and personal security.

Israel has a publicly-stated policy of violating the sovereignty of any and all countries in order to kill or abduct its opponents. In both proclamation and actual practice, Israeli law, decrees and actions abroad supersede the laws and law enforcement agencies of any other nation. If Israel’s policy becomes the common practice world-wide, we would enter a savage Hobbesian jungle in which individuals would be subject to the murderous intent of foreign assassination squads unrestrained by any law or accountable national authority. Each and every state could impose its own laws and cross national borders in order to murder other nation’s citizens or residents with impunity. Israel’s extra-territorial assassinations make a mockery of the very notion of national sovereignty. Extra-territorial secret police elimination of opponents was a common practice of the Nazi Gestapo, Stalin’s GPU and Pinochet’s DINA and has now become the sanctioned practice of the US “Special Forces” and the CIA clandestine division. Such policies are the hallmark of totalitarian, dictatorial and imperialist states, which systematically trample on the sovereign rights of peoples.

Israel’s practice of extra-judicial, extra-territorial assassinations, exemplified by the recent murder of Mahmoud al Mabhouh in a Dubai hotel room, violates all the fundamental precepts of the rule of law. Extra-judicial killings ordered by a state, mean its own secret police are judge, jury, prosecutor and executioner, unrestrained by sovereignty, law and the duty of nations to protect their citizens and visitors. Evidence, legal procedures, defense and cross examinations are obliterated in the process. State-sponsored, extra-judicial murder completely undermines due process. Liquidation of opponents abroad is the logical next step after Israel’s domestic show trials, based on the application of its racial laws and administrative detention decrees, which have dispossessed the Palestinian people and violated international laws.

Mossad death squads operate directly under the Israeli Prime Minister (who personally approved the recent murder).The vast majority of Israelis proudly support these assassinations, especially when the killers escape detection and capture. The unfettered operation of foreign state-sponsored death squads, carrying out extra-judicial assassinations with impunity, is a serious threat to every critic, writer, political leader and civic activist who dares to criticize Israel.

Mossad Murders - Zionist Fire

The precedent of Israel killing its adversaries abroad, establishes the outer boundaries of repression by its overseas supporters in the leading Zionist organizations, most of whom have now and in the past supported Israel’s violation of national sovereignty via extra-judicial killings. If Israel physically eliminates its opponents and critics, the 51 major American Jewish organizations economically repress Israel’s critics in the US. They actively pressure employers, university presidents and public officials to fire employees, academics and professionals who dare to speak or write against Israeli torture, killing and systematic dispossession of Palestinians.

So far, most critical comments, in Israel and elsewhere, of Mossad’s recent murder in Dubai focus on the agents’ “incompetence”, including allowing their faces to be captured on numerous security videos as they clumsily changed their wigs and costumes under the camera gaze . Other critics complain that the bungling Mossad is “tarnishing Israel’s image” as a democratic state and providing ammunition for the anti-Semites. None of these superficial criticisms have been repeated by the US Congress, White House or the Presidents of the Major Jewish American organizations, where the mafia rule of Omerga, or silence, reigns supreme and criminal complicity is the rule


While the critics bemoan the clumsy Mossad job, making it harder for Western powers to provide Israel with diplomatic cover for its operations abroad, the fundamental issue is never addressed: The Mossad’s acquisition and alteration of official British, French, German and Irish passports of dual Israeli citizen’s underscores the cynical and sinister nature of Israel’s exploitation of its dual citizens in the pursuit of its own bloody foreign policy goals. Mossad’s use of genuine passports issued by four sovereign European nations to its citizens in order to murder a Palestinian in a Dubai hotel room raises the question of to whom ‘dual’ Israeli citizens really owe their allegiance and just how far they are willing to go in defending or promoting Israel’s overseas assassinations.

Thanks to Israel’s use of British passports to enter Dubai and murder an adversary, every British businessperson or tourist traveling in the Middle East will be suspected of links to Israeli death squads. With elections this year and the Labor and Conservative parties counting heavenly on Zionist millionaires for campaign funding, it remains to be seen whether Prime Minister Gordon Brown will do more than whimper and cringe!

The James Petras Website

Israeli apartheid week

Mossad Comes to America: Death Squads by Invitation

By James Petras*

The principle propaganda mouthpiece of the Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations (PMAJO), the Daily Alert (DA), has come out in full support for Israel's practice of extra-judicial, extra-territorial assassination.

In the face of world-wide governmental condemnation (except from the Zionist-occupied White House and US Congress), the PMAJO slavishly backs any brutal murder committed by the Israeli secret police anywhere in the world and at anytime. The recent assassination of Hamas leader, Mahmoud Mabhouh, in Dubai is a case in point. The PMAJO has defended all of Mossad's criminal actions leading up to the murder, including extensive identity theft and the stealing or falsification of passports and official documents from several European countries, presumably allied to the Zionist state. Among the Mossad agents who entered Dubai to kill Mabhouh, twelve agents used stolen or forged British passports, three Australian, three French, one German and six Irish. These agents assumed the identity of European citizens in order to commit murder in a sovereign nation.

Once again the PMAJO demonstrate that its first loyalty is to the Israeli secret police, even when they violate the sovereignty of major US allies. No doubt the PMAJO would readily support the Israeli Mossad, even if it were shown to have used U.S. documents to assassinate Mabhouh. In fact, two of the 26 Israeli assassins, carrying fake Irish and fake British passports, are known to have entered the United States after the killing and may still be here.

The position adopted by the Daily Alert and the PMAJO in defense of Israel's international terrorist act followed several lines of attack, which will be discussed below. These include: (1) blaming the victim, (2) claiming that extra-judicial, extra territorial murders are legal, (3) minimizing the murder of ‘one' individual, (4) deflecting attention from the Zionists by blaming ‘other Arab's, (5) favorably comparing Mossad assassinations to US killings in Afghanistan, (6) trivializing and relativizing world condemnation, (7) citing "self-defense", (8) praising the high tech ‘operational details' of the assassination and (9) discrediting the Dubai police investigators rather than the Israeli perpetrators.

Abridged articles, cited in the Daily Alert, have appeared in the op-ed pages of several US, UK, Canadian and Israeli newspapers, as well as in rightwing magazines like Forbes and Commentary. The mainline Zionist propaganda technique is to avoid any discussion of Israel's egregious crimes against sovereignty, due process, international law and the personal security of individuals. In doing so, the Daily Alert adopts the propaganda techniques common to all totalitarian regimes practicing state terrorism.

(1) Blaming the Victim

On February 22, the Daily Alert (DA) headlined two articles, which were entitled: "Killed Hamas Official betrayed by Associates says Dubai Police Chief" and "Hamas: Assassinated Operative put Himself at Risk". The DA forgot to mention that Israeli secret police had been tracking their prey for over a month (having failed to assassinate him on six previous attempts) and that the Dubai Police Chief was not blaming Hamas officials but was in the process of accumulating evidence, witness statements, videos and documents proving the Israeli identities of the assassins. Needless to say, if we were to accept the American Zionists' argument that any leading opponent of Israel, who travels without an army of bodyguards, is "putting himself at risk", then we must acknowledge that ours is a lawless world where Israeli hit squads are free to commit murder anywhere, any time.

(2) Extra-Judicial, Extra territorial Murder is "Legal" (At least if the killers are Mossad)

The February 22 and February 24 issues of the DA include two articles arguing that Israel's practice of extra-judicial, extra-territorial murder is legal. One article is entitled, "The Legality of Killing of Hamas Mahmoud al Mabhoud" and the other, "The Proportionate Killing of Mahmoud al Mabhoud". These avoid any reference to international law, which emphatically rejects cross-border, state-sponsored murders. Legality, for the PMAJO, is whatever the Israel's secret police apparatus deems expedient in pursuit of its goal of eliminating leaders who oppose its colonial occupation and expropriation of Palestinian lands. If Israel's extra-judicial, extra-territorial murder of an adversary in Dubai is legal, why not assassinate opponents in the US, Canada, England or any other country where they might travel, live, work or write? What if the critics and opponents of Israel decided that it was now "legal" to murder Israel's supporters wherever they lived citing the Daily Alert's definition of legality? We would then find ourselves in a lawless world of "legal" murder and totalitarian cross-border surveillance.

(3) Minimizing the Murder

The Feb 22, 24, and 25 issues of the Daily Alert deflect attention from the Mossad murder by making comparison to the hundreds of Afghan civilians killed by US drone attacks. The claim is that "targeting individuals" is less a crime than mass killings. The problem with this argument is that for decades Mossad has "targeted" scores of opponents overseas and killed thousands of Palestinians in the occupied territories (where they work with the domestic secret police, Shin Bet, and the military, IDF). Moreover, this argument linking Israel's extra judicial assassinations with US colonial killing of Afghans is hardly a defense of either. By implicating the US in its defense of state terror, Israel is holding up the worst aspects of American imperialism as a standard for its own political behavior. One state's crimes are no justification for another's.

(4) Blaming the Arabs: Deflecting Attention from Israel

The DA Feb. 22 article entitled "The Assassination Heard Around the World" insinuates that the murder was a "result of a Hamas power struggle" or by one of "many Arab groups who loathes the Islamist Hamas".

In other words, all the forged or stolen European passports of Israeli dual citizens, and the Dubai security videos of Mossad operatives in various costumes, not to mention the jubilant affirmation by top Israeli leaders of the killing, was in reality ‘Arab tricks'. This crude propaganda ploy by the most prominent Jewish American organization reveals their own descent into a fantasy land of self-delusion, possible only in the closed world of US Zionist politics.

(5) Technical Proficiency

The DA published several articles praising the technical details of the Mossad assassination in Dubai, an aspect of the operation, with which few Israel security experts would agree. The Feb. 24 DA article entitled, "Assassination Shows Skillful Planning" chastises Israel's critics for not recognizing the high quality of the "operational aspects" of the killings and recommends its "lessons for all intelligence services around the world". Like sociopaths and serial killers, US Zionists openly promote Israeli death squad techniques to all fellow state terrorists. In the DA, professional techniques of assassination are far more important than universal moral repugnance of political murders.

(6) Discrediting the Investigators While Defending the Perpetrators

The DA on Feb. 25 cited a long and tendentious attack on the Dubai police, published in Forbes Magazine, which ridiculed their meticulous investigations uncovering Mossad's roles in the murder. In this article, the Dubai authorities were condemned for uncovering Israeli involvement while not investigating the source of the murder victims' … Iraqi passport! Instead of encouraging the Dubai police pursuit of justice, the Daily Alert published a long diatribe implicating Dubai in the attacks of 9/11/2001, its continued trade with Iran, its ‘involvement' in international terrorism etc. There was no mention of Dubai's relatively friendly position to Israel and Israelis prior to Mossad's blatant violation of its sovereignty.


The American Zionist propaganda campaign in defense of Israeli state terror and, specifically, Mossad's murder of a Hamas leader in Dubai, relies on lies, evasions and specious legal arguments. This "defense" violates all precepts of a civilized society as well as the most recent American federal laws prohibiting all forms of support for international terrorism. The PMAJO can pursue its defense of Mossad's acts of international terrorism with impunity in the US because of its power over the US Congress, the Obama White House and the American mass media. This ensures that only its version of events, its definition of legality and its lies will be heard by legislators, echoed by Zionist activists and embellished by its solemn defenders in academic and journalistic circles. To counter the American Zionist defense of Israel's practice of extra-territorial, extra-judicial executions by the Mossad, we need American writers and academics to step forward. It is time to expose their flimsy arguments, bold-face lies and audacious immorality. It is time to speak out against their impunity, before another Israeli secret police murder takes place, possibly inside the USA itself and with the shameless complicity of Zionist accomplices.

The authorities in Dubai have found clear evidence that the Mossad assassination team received support from European Zionists. The hotels, air tickets and expenses were paid with credit cards issued in the US. Two of the killers may be in the US now. Will a time come when American Zionists, who are unconditional public defenders of Mossad killings, cross the line between propaganda for the deed to become accomplices of the deed? The robust American Zionist defense of Mossad's overseas assassinations does not augur well for the security of Americans in the face of Israel's willing U.S. accomplices.

* James Petras is a retired Bartle Professor (Emeritus) of Sociology at Binghamton University, SUNY, New York, U.S., and adjunct professor at Saint Mary's University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. He is the author of 62 books and over 560 articles. He has published over 2000 articles in nonprofessional journals such as the New York Times, the Guardian, the Nation, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, New Left Review, Temps Moderne, Le Monde Diplomatique, and his commentary is widely carried on the internet. He is winner of a Life Time Career Award of the American Sociology Association, Marxist Section.

Note: James Petras' latest books, Global Depression and Regional Wars (Atlanta, Clarity Press, 2009) is the third in a series, including Zionism, Militarism and the Decline of US Power (Atlanta, Clarity Press 2008) and The Power of Israel in the United States (Atlanta, Clarity Press 2006), analyzing the influence of militarism and Zionism in American foreign policy.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

UPDATE. In the Emanuel/Obama administration, AIPAC in the White House

UPDATE. In the Emanuel/Obama administration, the "Tribe of Rahm" goes to the front of the bus

WMR has learned that under tremendous pressure from White House chief of staff and pro-Israeli hawk Rahm Emanuel, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi passed over House Ways and Means ranking Democrat Pete Stark (D-CA) in favor of Sander Levin (D-MI) to chair the all-important congressional committee. Levin replaces Representative Charlie Rangel (D-MY) who stepped aside "temporarily" amid an ethics probe of his personal financial interests.

Stark is known by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) to be among the few members of Congress who does not walk in lock-step with the Israel Lobby. After the Israeli attack on Lebanon in 2006, Stark opposed a congressional resolution in support of the Israeli attack as a "one-sided resolution that condemns recent attacks against the State of Israel while failing to deplore Israeli violence against the people of Lebanon." In 1991, Stark criticized then-Representative Stephen Solarz (D-NY) as a pro-Israeli "field marshal" for championing the Gulf War.

The move by Pelosi puts Levin in charge of the House's tax legislation committee and a committee that also has influence over Social Security, unemployment benefits, and Medicare. Levin's brother, Senator Carl Levin, is the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee. The control by a single family from Michigan of two of the most powerful committees in Congress is already giving rise to charges of nepotism and cronyism being engineered by Emanuel on behalf of his co-religionists.

Emanuel has also been instigating a stealth public relations campaign recently with "puff pieces" supporting Emanuel appearing in Washington Post stories written by Dana Milbank and Jason Horowitz. From the pieces in the Post, it appears that Emanuel is trying to cast blame of President Obama's troubles on policy advisor David Axelrod, who is clearly not in Rahm's tribal bivouac.

It is also readily apparent that it was Emanuel who was behind the White House offer to Pennsylvania Democratic Senate candidate Representative Joe Sestak, who is a retired Navy admiral, to drop his campaign against Republican-turned-Democrat Arlen Specter in exchange for a top job in the Obama administration. Specter is Jewish while Sestak is a Catholic.

The trading of a U.S. Senate seat for political favors is what landed former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich a criminal indictment, impeachment, and removal from office. WMR has learned from our Chicago sources that Emanuel was, in fact, offering Blagojevich presidential favors in return for appointing a Senator to replace Obama that was to Emanuel's liking. U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), who, like Emanuel, is Jewish, was said to be that candidate. Blagojevich is a Serbian Orthodox. When Blagojevioch refused to play Emanuel's game, Emanuel began feeding damaging information to the corrupt and politically-motivated U.S. Attorney for Northern Illinois, Patrick Fitzgerald.

In 2007, it was Emanuel who pushed for the election of Steny Hoyer (D-MD) as House Majority leader over the late Representative John Murtha (D-PA). Murtha was nominated by Pelosi and Reprsentative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), among others. Hoyer was clearly Emanuel's candidate since Hoyer's sister, Bernice Manocherian, had previously served as the executive president of AIPAC. Last month, Murtha, an ex-Marine and critic of the Iraq war, died from an infection resulting from faulty gall bladder surgical procedures at Bethesda Naval Hospital.

Emanuel, as previously reported by WMR, also conspired with U.S. Judge Avern Cohn of the Eastern District of Michigan to threaten House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers's wife, former Detroit City Council President Monica Conyers who pleaded guilty to federal bribery charges last year, with a maximum prison sentence if Chairman Conyers continued his vocal criticisms of Obama's policies. Mrs. Conyers is due to be sentenced by Cohn on March 10.

There have been subtle hints that Conyers should step down as House Judicairy Committee chairman opening up the chairmanship to Representative Howard Berman (D-CA), one of AIPAC's and Israel's strongest supporters in the House. Berman is currently chairman of the powerful House Foreign Affairs Committee having succeeded the late Representative Tom Lantos (D-CA), another hawkish supporter of AIPAC and Israel.

UPDATE: Today, Berman, after Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's personal intervention urging him not to approve an Armenian genocide resolution in the House Foreign Affairs Committee, a move known to be strongly opposed by Turkey, saw to it that the measure was passed. Turkey retaliated by recalling its ambassador to Washington. In the House resolution, Turkey stands accused of launching an early 1900s genocide against Armenians in Anatolia. Berman is acting on behalf of Israeli interests who want to punish Turkey for its criticisms of Israel's invasion of and genocide in Gaza. Berman's actions came after close joint lobbying efforts by the Israeli and Armenian lobbies in Washington. In the past, AIPAC ensured that Armenian genocide resolutions were defeated in order to placate Turkey, once a close military ally of Israel. The House committee vote was a close 23-22, with Berman's support critical for passage. Another AIPAC hawk, Representative Gary Ackerman (D-NY), also supported the resolution. Republicans and Democrats on the committee voted against the resolution. Many said American relations with Turkey were too important to risk them for a resolution on events that took place almost 100 years ago. However, AIPAC's members, as usual with genocide politics, whether in Rwanda, the Balkans, Turkey, or Gaza, put the interests of Israel ahead of those of the United States.

Former Representative James Traficant (D-OH), who served a seven-year prison sentence for corruption and who recently announced a run for his old seat as an independent, has claimed that AIPAC actually controls American foreign policy. WMR has heard similar statements from members of the House of Reprsentatives, ranging from liberal Democrats to conservative Republicans with the admonition that their statements are strictly "off-the-record."

More details emerging of NSA's next generation Internet surveillance

The Obama administration is continuing to expand a National Security Agency-run Internet surveillance program first started by the Bush administration.

The surveillance project, known as Einstein, was previously reported by WMR to be a surveillance program and not, primarily, a network security countermeasure as billed by NSA and the Bush administration.

On September 15, 2008, WMR reported: "WMR has learned from government sources that the Bush administration has authorized massive surveillance of the Internet using as cover a cyber-security multi-billion dollar project called the 'Einstein' program. Billed as a cyber-security intrusion detection system for federal computer systems and networks, WMR has been told that the actual intent of Einstein is to initially monitor the email and web surfing activities of federal employees and contractors and not in protecting government computer systems from intrusion by outsiders. In February 2008, President Bush signed a directive that designated the National Security Agency (NSA) as the central administrator for the federal government's computer and network security. Although Einstein is primarily a program under the aegis of the Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) of the National Cyber Security Division of the Homeland Security Department, WMR has learned that it has the personal support of Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Mike McConnell, a former NSA director. Einstein is advertised as merely conducting traffic analysis within the dot (.) gov and dot (.) mil domains, including data packet lengths, protocols, source and destination IP addresses, source and destination ports, time stamp information, and autonomous system numbers. However, WMR has learned that Einstein will also bore down into the text of email and analyze message content. In fact, most of the classified budget allotted to Einstein is being used for collecting information from the text of messages and not the header data."

WMR further reported: " . . . WMR has learned that most of the classified technology being used for Einstein was developed for the NSA in conducting signals intelligence (SIGINT) operations on email networks in Russia. Code-named PINWALE, the NSA email surveillance system targets Russian government, military, diplomatic, and commercial email traffic and burrows into the text portions of the email to search for particular words and phrases of interest to NSA eavesdroppers. The DNI and NSA also plan to move Einstein into the private sector by claiming the nation's critical infrastructure, by nature, overlaps into the commercial sector. There are classified plans, already budgeted in so-called "black" projects, to extend Einstein surveillance into the dot (.) com, dot (.) edu, dot (.) int, and dot (.) org, as well as other Internet domains."

The Internet surveillance project reported by WMR in September 2008 is known as "Einstein 2." The system that will extend NSA surveillance into the private sector is known as "Einstein 3." On September 16, 2008, WMR reported Einstein's expansion globally: "The National Security Agency's (NSA) 'Einstein' Internet surveillance technology is set to be extended to the nations of the South Pacific if New Zealand's NSA counterpart, the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) gets its way."

Speaking at the RSA Security conference in San Francisco on March 3, Greg Schaffer, assistant secretary of Homeland Security for cybersecurity and communications, tipped attendees off on the future plans of the NSA and Homeland Security Department to extend Einstein 3 surveillance to non-government networks, including the Internet.

Einstein was a personal pet project of Bush's Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. With Chertoff continuing to advise the Homeland Security Department and Secretary Janet Napolitano, the Obama administration is continuing to embrace the Internet surveillance policies adopted by the Bush administration. Napolitano is also continuing Chertoff's policies by keeping most of the details about Einstein, both versions 2 and 3, classified.

The NSA and the Obama administration are claiming that Einstein 3 does not read the content of e-mail messages, however, much of the details of the system are not only classified but AT&T, which was instrumental in conducting highly-classified warrantless wiretaps of Internet traffic on behalf of the NSA as part of STELLAR WIND, is involved in testing Einstein 3.

The history of NSA's expansion of its surveillance capabilities suggests that it is being as disingeneous about Einstein 3 as it was about previous forays into private telecommunications surveillance, including the Clipper and Capstone encryption key escrow systems that allowed NSA to possess the decryption keys to listen to and read scrambled private phone calls and e-mail messages, respectively.

NSA often will state we want to do "A" but not "B." In fact, NSA always wants to do "A" and "B," with plans to do "C."

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Funding Israeli Militarism, Belligerence and Occupation - by Stephen Lendman

From birth, Israel was a regional menace until America became its benefactor in the late 1960s. Now it's a global one, powerful with a large standing army and the latest weapons and technology, nuclear armed and ready to use them. It's belligerent on the slightest pretext or none at all, and a threat to world peace and security because US administrations since Lyndon Johnson supported a nation of 5.6 million Jews in an area the size of New Jersey, partnering in its worst crimes and abuses.

It's due largely to the Israeli Lobby's influence, or as John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt wrote in their book, "The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy," America's Middle East policy is driven "almost entirely (by) US domestic politics, and especially (because of) the (Lobby's) activities....This situation has no equal in American political history."

In his book, "The Power of Israel in the United States," James Petras documented its enormous influence, explaining its roots throughout government, the business community, the dominant media, academia, the clergy, and powerful wealthy Jewish families. Broad support comes from thousands of dedicated activists, including doctors, lawyers, accountants, other professionals, philanthropists, and journalists given special prominence and benefits for their unwavering pro-Israeli reporting, suppressing decades of its militarism, belligerence, and illegal occupation while vilifying Israel's enemies.

As a result, Israel receives enormous benefits, including billions in annual aid, the latest weapons and technology, unrestricted US market access, and free entry of its immigrants. Its imperial wars, illegal occupation, and crimes of war and against humanity are supported. Harmful Security Council resolutions are vetoed and General Assembly ones ignored. As a result, it operates freely, including spying in America by covertly penetrating US military bases, the FBI, CIA, IRS, DHS and many other government agencies, remaining unaccountable for its actions.

Israel is unique as America's largest aid recipient, on the most favorable terms, and virtually anything more requested, given openly or covertly, in violation of the 1961 US Foreign Assistance Act (as amended), stipulating that no aid be provided to governments that engage:

"in a consistent pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights, including torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, prolonged detention without charges, causing the disappearance of persons by the abduction and clandestine detention of those persons, or other flagrant denial of the right to life, liberty, and the security of person, unless such assistance will directly benefit the needy people in such country."

In 2004, the amended Act let the president provide aid to treat orphans, other vulnerable children, those with HIV/AIDS, and to set up schools and other supportive programs.

US Aid to Israel

In November 2008, Shirl McArthur of the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (WRMEA) used Congressional Research Report (CRS) data for a "Conservative Estimate of Total Direct US Aid to Israel" since 1949, saying it's almost $114 billion, but explaining that determining the exact figure is impossible since parts are buried in various agency budgets, mostly the Defense Department's (DOD) or in forms not easily quantifiable.

He states:

"It must be emphasized that this analysis is a conservative, defensible accounting of US direct aid to Israel, NOT of Israel's cost to the US or the American taxpayer, not of the benefits to Israel of US aid. The distinction is important, because the indirect or consequential costs suffered by the US as a result of its blind support for Israel exceed by many times the substantial amount of direct aid" provided.

Besides Afghanistan and other Middle East conflicts, excluded from McArthur's data, is the mounting Iraq invasion and occupation cost, estimated by Joseph Stiglitz and Linda Bilmes to be $3 trillion in their book titled, "The Three Trillion Dollar War: The True Cost of the Iraq Conflict."

They include an extra $2 trillion national debt, ad infinitum interest on it, veterans' healthcare and disability payments, the economic impact of lives lost and jobs interrupted, the higher cost of oil, the long-term economic impact, and numerous intangibles such as global anti-American sentiment, the near universal Arab world view that Washington attacked Iraq for Israel, and the US's reduced capability to respond to other global crises and address vital homeland needs.

In his June 2003 WRMEA article titled, "The Cost to American Taxpayers of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict," Thomas Stauffer conservatively estimated it at around $3 trillion measured in 2002 dollars, nearly four times the amount for the Vietnam war, also in 2002 dollars.

Stauffer said US Israeli aid is way-understated:

"since much is outside of the foreign aid appropriation process or implicit in other programs. It comes to $1.8 trillion, including special trade advantages, preferential contracts, or aid buried in other accounts. In addition to the financial outlay," about 275,000 US jobs are lost annually.

His estimates include:

-- multi-fold oil price increases;

-- the effect on US jobs and exports;

-- economic and military aid,

-- special benefits to Israel, including privileged contracts for Israeli firms, legal and illegal weapons and technology transfers, exemption from US trade protection provisions, discounted "surplus" military equipment sales, low or no-interest loans, and other undisclosed costly benefits, exclusively for Israel.

He concluded that Israeli assistance and Middle East unrest "ha(ve) proven to be very expensive for the US," much higher than revealed figures. Their total costs "are some six times the official aid" with all related factors included such as the price of oil and burden on other regional states. "All states - not just the US - have borne the burden of conflicts in the Middle East."

Known US aid includes:

-- annual $3 billion direct appropriations;

-- undisclosed additional amounts;

-- millions annually to resettle immigrants;

-- disclosed and unknown billions in loan guarantees;

-- since 1981, economic aid in direct cash transfers, and since 1985 military aid the same way;

-- Israeli military loans as grants, repayment not required; Israel wants them called loans to avoid US monitoring; according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), "Technically, the assistance is called loans, but as a practical matter, the military aid is (given as) grants;"

-- economic aid is the same, Israel spending it as it pleases with no required accountability;

-- since 1982, Economic Support Fund (ESF) cash transfers come in lump sum form at the beginning of each fiscal year, no strings attached - a benefit afforded no other country, made even greater by investing it in US Treasuries;

-- special Foreign Military Sales (FMS) funding is also afforded to purchase American weapons and technology; other countries buy them through the Defense Department (DOD); Israel deals directly with US companies; other countries must comply with minimum purchase amounts; Israel has no such restriction; other countries let DOD disburse funds to suppliers; Israel pays them directly and is reimbursed by the US Treasury; under this arrangement, Israeli officials have committed serious offenses, including embezzlement and improper access to highly classified information on US weapons and technology;

-- US weapons suppliers provide offsets by purchasing Israeli products and services;

-- Israel may use over 26% of its aid to buy weapons, munitions and other equipment from its own companies; no other nation has this benefit; as a result, its arms industry is one of the world's largest and most sophisticated; in 2007, it was the 8th largest supplier to developing countries;

-- aid finances Israel's defense industry;

-- state-of-the-art weapons and technology are provided; and

-- America guarantees Israel's access to oil and finances its settlements - illegal under international law.

In April 1998, Washington designed Israel a "major non-NATO ally," qualifying it to receive Excess Defense Articles (EDA) under Section 516 of the Foreign Assistance Act and Section 23(a) of the Arms Export Control Act. As a strategic US ally, it gets unmatched preferential treatment.

In FY 2009, the If Americans Knew web site said America gave Israel $7 million or more daily. Palestinians got nothing, except to police their own people, strengthen Fatah against Hamas and other competing parties, some economic aid benefitting Israel and the West, and spotty amounts through USAID and to UNRWA and US-based NGOs for projects called "humanitarian."

In their above-mentioned book, Mearsheimer and Walt said:

"Since the October (1973) War, Washington has provided Israel with a level of support dwarfing the amounts (given) any other state. It has been the largest annual recipient of direct US economic and military assistance since 1976 and the largest total recipient since World War II. Total direct US aid to Israel amounts to well over $140 billion in 2003 dollars....In per capita terms, the United States gives each Israeli a direct subsidy worth about $500 per year."

Over the last 20 years, Washington focused mainly on military aid, increasing it by $150 million annually since FY 2007, plus additional amounts for Israeli incursions, planned jointly with Washington.

Before 1998, Israel annually received military grants of $1.8 billion and economic ones totaling $1.2 billion. Beginning in FY 2009, by mutual agreement, economic aid is being reduced by $120 million and military grants increased by $60 million annually over 10 years. In August 2007, a memorandum of understanding afforded Israel $30 billion in aid for 10 years, plus later discovered undisclosed amounts, totaling billions.

Budgeted amounts go mostly for specific projects, such as Israel's Merkava tank, its Arrow anti-missile missile, other anti-missile systems, and the cancelled Lavi attack fighter. Grants also go to US - Israeli scientific and business cooperation organizations, the two largest being the BIRD (Binational Research & Development) Foundation and the BARD (Binational Agriculture and Research and Development) Fund.

Congressional Research Service (CRS) Report on US Foreign Aid to Israel - December 4, 2009

Its latest report affirms Israel as "the largest cumulative recipient of US foreign assistance since World War II," saying it gets nearly $3 billion annually, mainly as military assistance.

In August 2007, the Bush administration incrementally increased it by $6 billion over the next decade. For FY 2010, the Obama administration requested $2.775 billion in Foreign Military Financing (FMF). Congress provided $555 million of Israel's total FY 2010 FMF in PL (Public Law) 111-32, in the FY 2009 Supplemental Appropriations Act. HR 3081 and S 1434 contain the remaining funds.

On July 9, 2009, HR 3160 was introduced, the Israeli Foreign Assistance Appropriations Act, 2010. The bill was referred to committee and awaits further action.

Recent possible military sales include:

-- on September 29, 2008, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter with associated equipment and training, a deal, if consummated, worth up to $15.2 billion; Israel wants up to 75 depending on the cost; negotiations continue, but reported disagreement was reported over its right to customize aircraft to its needs and the final per plane cost, from $100 - $200 million depending on the degree of customization;

-- on September 9, 2008, Patriot Missile Fire Unit upgrades, 1,000 GBU-39 small diameter guided bombs, and 28,000 M72A7 light anti-armor weapons, in total worth about $330 million; Israel already has US-supplied Hawk and Patriot missiles as well as its own defense systems; since 1988, both countries have been developing the Arrow Anti-Missile system, a weapon with theater ballistic missile capability; Arrow became operational in 2000; Arrow II is designed to deter longer-range conventional ballistic missiles, and other systems are under development, including Arrow III;

-- on July 30, 2008, nine C-130 J-30 aircraft with associated equipment and training, worth up to $1.9; billion; and

-- on July 15, 2008, four Littoral combat ships, worth up to $1.9 billion, and JP-8 aviation jet fuel worth up to $1.3 billion; in 2009, Israel declined to purchase these ships over cost concerns.

American Israeli aid began in 1949 with a $100 million Export-Import Bank loan and continued modestly for the next two decades. In 1962, Israel bought its first advanced weapons system, Hawk anti-aircraft missiles. In 1968, a year after the Six Day War, the Johnson administration assured Israel's regional military superiority. Since 1970, large-scale aid followed. In 1971, it was $545 million, and by 1974 Israel became America's largest aid recipient, two-thirds for military purposes.

After the 1979 Camp David Accords and Israel - Egypt Peace Treaty, Washington gave both sides $7.5 billion under the 1979 Special International Security Assistance Act, allocated 3 - 2 favoring Israel. Thereafter, regular and emergency economic and military aid followed. Today, Israeli allocations far exceed amounts given Egypt or any other nation.

In 1985, Congress appropriated special economic assistance of $1.5 billion under terms of a US - Israel Joint Economic Development Group (JEDG), calling for neoliberal reforms and empowering Israel's Finance Ministry and national Bank.

Washington and Tel Aviv colluded for two goals:

-- balancing Israel's budget; and

-- cutting wages, prices, credit, public benefits, pensions, and the currency's value as well as curbing union power and establishing an exploitable temporary worker market.

It began Israel's race to the bottom by mass privatizations, welfare and social benefit cuts, and wealth shifted to the top as in America, the result being growing Jewish poverty, hunger and homelessness to the present.

In 1985, all US military aid became grants, what began for economic aid in 1981. Thereafter, generous supplemental aid followed, including after the Gulf and 2003 Iraq wars. The FY 2003 Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act included $9 billion in loan guarantees over three years and $1 billion in military grants. Other amounts came earlier. They've continued ever since, some open, others covert, affording Israel exclusive preferential treatment.

The "special relationship" remains fixed under Obama, what he affirmed at the June 2008 AIPAC meeting that he's "a true friend of Israel," felt he was "among friends," stressed that "the bond between the United States and Israel is unbreakable today, tomorrow and forever," and, in fact, "as president, I will work with you to ensure that this bond is strengthened." He hasn't disappointed.

Stephen Lendman is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization. He lives in Chicago and can be reached at

Also visit his blog site at and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Obama's "Brave New Africa" -- U.S. mercenaries killing Africans for minerals

Africa's first native son President of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama, may be its worst nightmare.

WMR's Africa sources report that a company that contracts to Pentagon and U.S. intelligence and homeland security agencies, Astrata Group Inc. (ATTG) of Los Angeles, has deployed private military contractors to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to track down and kill Rwandan Hutu refugees, claimed to be members of the Rwandan "Interhamwe" opposition to U.S.-backed Rwandan Tutsi dictator Paul Kagame, and kill them. ATTG, which it prefers to be called by its on-ground employees rather than Astrata, has reportedly ferried by helicopter into the eastern DRC U.S. private military contractors, many veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and directed them to take out Hutus and their allies in the region. Eastern DRC is rich is highly-prized col-tan, used in micro-electronic consumer products, as well as diamonds and gold. ATTG's motto is reportedly "Doing bad things to bad people."

In addition to U.S. military veterans, ATTG has reportedly hired British and French military veterans. The firm reportedly pays the military contractors in Africa in cash. ATTG is said to have agents serving in regular military forces who scout out for those whose enlistments are expiring for hiring. The key factor for hiring into ATTG is personality type. The new hires are introduced to their corporate handlers who introduce them to their paymaster who, in turn, provides them with cash for them to buy their own equipment from a list provided to them.

ATTG new recruits are given plane tickets by their handlers and then fly to their mission location where they meet their fellow team members.

Astrata's public relations tear sheet states the company provides "position-centric solutions for mining, surveying, and construction professionals worldwide. It operates in two segments, Geomatics and Telematics. The Geomatics segment offers high precision surveying/positioning instruments for surveying and construction professionals, the mining industry, government agencies, utility companies, and municipalities . . . the Telematics segment offers products, accessories, and services related to the business of remote monitoring of assets, including track-and-trace. This segment addresses the market for fleet management, workforce management, remote asset management and tracking, meter reading, and emergency services by providing hardware for global positioning system information and data collection, as well as the software needed to access and analyze the data through the Internet. In addition, the company offers a range of rugged mobile computing, wireless and location-based solutions, which combine GPS and global system for mobile telecommunications technologies. Astrata Group serves industrial, commercial, governmental entities, academic/research institutions, and professional customers in various markets, including surveying, utility, construction, homeland security, military, intelligence, mining, agriculture, public safety, marine, and transportation. The company was founded in 1986 and is based in Los Angeles, California."

Astrata markets vehicle tracking and immobilization systems, which permits law enforcement or other agents to slow down, stop, or speed up vehicles thought to pose a security threat.

Astrata, which is known as Astrata-Sirius outside the United States, went public in 2004. The firm is very active in Brunei and Southeast Asian waters, particularly the Straits of Malacca, where its private military contractors reportedly pose as tourists in boats to lure the attention of pirates who are then killed. The "tourists" have satellite phones in order to call in other boat squadrons in the event they require additional firepower.

On February 22, 2006, WMR reported: "The CIA's maritime interdiction program was designed to stop suspect cargo vessels on the high seas, mostly in the Straits of Malacca and the South China Sea, and search them for nuclear material and missiles and their respective components. The unique and most sensitive aspect of the CIA program was the use of Southeast Asian sea pirates to gain access to the interdicted vessels. The CIA's interdiction program began in the early 1990s . . . Special armed CIA units, masquerading as pirates themselves, accompanied the actual pirates on their fast boats when they attacked merchant vessels identified by other intelligence as likely trafficking in nuclear and missile cargo. The CIA teams, wearing personal dosimeters and using Geiger counters and other radiation detection equipment, would inspect cargo holds and containers as the 'official pirates' off-loaded commercial cargo such as electronic equipment, small vehicles, and other merchandise. The quid pro quo was that the CIA would not interfere with the pirates' looting of commercial cargo and the pirates would give the CIA teams first access to the cargo holds and containers. The two teams also provided each other mutual security. In most cases, the CIA had arranged to pay off local police, maritime police, and coast guards not to interfere with the joint CIA-pirate gang operations. The U.S. Navy was also instructed not to interfere in the pre-arranged piracy actions."

Astrata provides monitoring equipment for clients in Singapore, Senegal, Denmark, Italy, Jordan, Dubai, and United Kingdom, as well as for the Ministry of Transport of Iraq.

In 2008, Astrata announced that it had been awarded a $100 million contract to provide equipment to a "classified" client with an option of additional "product options."

In 2005, Astrata changed its NASDAQ market trading symbol to ATTG from "ATTA." Astrata CEO Anthony Harrison stated: "We are grateful for the thoughtfulness and prompt action by NASDAQ in changing our prior symbol, ATTA, which had been computer generated and inadvertently assigned and which may have had a disturbing association with the name of the lead hijacker in the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center."

"The Rigis of Baluchistan" are actually the Rigis of the Shah's royal court and neocon swindlers

Move over Ahmad Chalabi and "Curveball," there is a new neocon act in town -- they are the Riggi family of Jundallah, the CIA-backed Iranian Baluchi terrorist group operating on Pakistani soil.

Iran has not only captured Abdolmalek Rigi, the head of the Jundallah terrorist group active in Iran's Sistan-Baluchistan province, his brother Abdolhamid Rigi, and gained valuable intelligence about CIA operations against Iran but has been able to link the Jundallah group to Washington-based neocons who front for Israeli and Iranian royal restoration interests. Some of the Washington neocon interests promoted the pre-Iraq War propaganda efforts of Iraqi National Congress official Ahmad Chalabi.

The support network for Jundallah in Washington was largely crafted by Richard Holbrooke, neocon think tanks, and Holbrooke's Perseus LLC "silent partner" George Soros and his array of Open Society Institute-funded anti-Iran non-governmental organizations (NGOs), according to information received by WMR's sources in south and east Asia. Holbrooke's Perseus private equity fund is linked to Soros through the Perseus-Soros BioPharmaceutical Fund, L.P.

Holbrooke also served as a director of the anti-Chinese American Himalayan Foundation led by the billionaire defense tycoon husband of Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Richard Blum. A previously reported by WMR, Holbrooke's central Asia strategy is to cause problems for trans-Asian oil and natural gas pipelines from countries like Turkmenistan, Iran, and Uzbekistan to China.

Holbrooke has also been involved in the legitimization of fraudulent elections through his membership of the board for the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and as an advisory board member of Public Strategies, Inc. (PSI) , which represented Diebold Election Systems in 2004. PSI is now headed by Dan Bartlett, a former senior adviser to President George W. Bush.

More problematic for America's relations with Iran is Holbrooke's co-founding and co-chairmanship of the group, "United Against a Nuclear Iran," the advisory board of which includes such pro-Israeli neocons as James Woolsey and which was co-founded by Holbrooke's fellow pro-Israel "Trojan Horse" in the Obama administration, Dennis Ross.

The senior advisor to Holbrooke at the State Department is Iranian-American scholar Vali Nasr, a former professor at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. During the Bush administration, Nasr consulted with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on U.S.-Iranian relations. Nasr is close to the exiled family of Iran's late Shah. Nasr's father was the chief of staff for the Shah's wife, Empress Farah.

Abdolhamid Rigi has revealed that the Rigi's interlocutor with Washington and the CIA is his father's cousin, Amanollah-Khan Rigi, who, like Nasr's father, was a member of the Shah's royal court. In 2005, American Enterprise Institute resident scholar Michael Ledeen, a fanatic supporter of another Iranian terrorist group, the Mojahedin e Khalq (MEK), hosted Amanollah-Khan Rigi at a conference on a federalized Iran at the AEI's Wohlstetter Conference Center in Washngton, DC. In addition to the "Baluchi" representative Rigi, also participating in the conference were Iranian separatists representing Kurds and Azeris. Rigi boasted that he was the leader of a 300,000-member Baluchi tribe, which was a complete fabrication.

Amanollah-Khan Rigi is also deeply enmeshed in other neocon operations in Washington, including his advisory board membership for the Alliance for Democracy in Iran (ADI), a group linked to the neocon and Jewish-centric Hudson Institute, Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, and Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA).

As much as it may be difficult to believe, Amanollah-Khan Rigi may be a bigger con-man that Ahmad Chalabi. Rigi is a registered real estate agent in New Jersey and was involved in an attempt to pawn off as a real a mummy of an alleged Persian princess. The "mummy" was offered for sale in October 2000 by Wali Mohammed Reeki (Rigi), a Baluchi tribal leader and camel breeder in Pakistan near the Afghan border. Rigi said he obtained the mummy from an Iranian salesman after an earthquake in Quetta, Pakistan and the mummy was on the block in the black antiquities market for between $11 and $30 million. Later, an archaeologist proclaimed the mummy to be that of a Persian princess who lived around 600 BC. Heightening interest in the mummy, she was later proclaimed by the archaeologist to be none other than Princess Rhodugune, the daughter of Persian King Xerxes I and a member of the Achaemenid dynasty.

But there was controversy over whether the mummy was a Persian or Egyptian princess married to a Persian prince since mummification was only known in Egypt, not Persia. Iran claimed that as a Persian princess, the mummy should be returned to Iran. Pakistan said that because the mummy was found in Quetta, it belonged to Pakistan. The Afghan Taliban said the mummy was taken from Afghanistan and that it belonged to Afghanistan.

However, it was later discovered that the mummy was not an ancient Persian princess but of a young woman who had probably been murdered in 1996. Pakistani police began arresting a number of Baluchis and others for murder.

Amanollah-Khan Rigi acted as a middleman for an "unknown" antiquities dealer in Karachi who claimed the mummy came from a Zoroastrian family in Iran. Rigi sent four photographs to New York's Metropolitan Museum hoping for a confirmation of the mummy's authenticity.

Essentially, the Holbrooke team of neocons and con-men is trying to do to Iran what Chalabi and neocons like Ledeen, Richard Perle, and Douglas Feith did to Iraq, mostly through Chalabi and other frauds.

The takedown of Abdolmalek Rigi by the joint Iran-Pakistan intelligence operation in a two-plane decoy operation reported previously by WMR has now been confirmed by Kyrgyzstan's Foreign Ministry. The Kyrgyz government is now stating that Rigi was not arrested by Iran aboard the Kyrgystan airline that was forced to land in Bandar Abbas, Iran after taking off from Dubai. Even though Kyrgyz aviation authorities reported that two people were detained in Bandar Abbas, the Kyrgyz government is now claiming that no foreign nationals were apprehended on the plane. The Bishkek government is trying to provide plausible deniability that Iran and Pakistan conducted a decoy operation that saw Rigi taken directly from Pakistan to Iran on another small plane, while decoy personnel, masquerading as Rigi and his aide, were seen being taken off the Kyrgyz plane in Iran. It is now believed that Kyrgyz security personnel aboard the Kyrgyzstan flight tipped off Bishkek about the operation and that prompted Holbrooke to depart quickly for Georgia after Rigi's no-show at Manas.

WMR has also learned that Holbrooke met in Tbilisi, Georgia with Azeri Iranians working with former Savak agents for the Shah. Holbrooke's plan appears to be to coordinate anti-Iran activities with the Rigi smuggler tribe in Pakistan, Amanollah-Khan Rigi -- a CIA scamster who operates in the same fashion as Chalabi -- and Nasr, a pseudo-scholar linked to the Iranian royalists abroad.

Holbrooke's strategy is already having a boomerang effect in Uzbekistan and Russia. It turns out that Abdolmalek Rigi was to give ex-Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan guerillas at the Manas Airbase a pep talk in their native Dari language before heading into the volatile Fergana valley of Tajikistan to engage in training activities on behalf of the CIA. The Russian and Uzbek intelligence services are now aware of the CIA operation and are taking actions to counter it.

Assassinatos seletivos

Lejeune Mirhan *

Desta vez a mídia grande não teve como esconder. No último dia 20 de janeiro, agentes do Serviço Secreto de Israel, o Mossad, assassinaram, a sangue frio, após uma sessão de tortura, um dos líderes do grupo Hamas, que luta pela libertação da Palestina.

Enterro de Mahmoud em Damasco Mobilizou amplas  Massas

Mahmoud Abdel Rauf Al Mabhouh encontrava-se hospedado em um hotel na cidade de Dubai, nos Emirados Árabes Unidos. Passado um mês, muitas investigações, acho fundamental que comentemos sobre esse caso esta semana.

Uma prática criminosa de Israel

Não é de hoje que Israel assassina líderes palestinos. E isso ocorre não só nos territórios ocupados ilegalmente por esse Estado criminoso e agressor. Fazem isso em qualquer lugar do mundo. Na Faixa de Gaza, Israel chega a usar bombardeios de alta precisão, lançados de aviões de combate, que atingem a casa específica de um líder da resistência, matando não só a liderança como também toda a sua família. Fez isso inclusive com um dos fundadores do Hamas, xeque Ahmed Yassin, morto em 2004.

Neste caso, o líder assassinado é um dos fundadores das Brigadas Ezzedine Al-Qassam, uma espécie de braço militar do Hamas. Uma pessoa do alto escalão da direção do grupo, que funciona como partido político de orientação religiosa e que atua quase que exclusivamente na Faixa de Gaza. Mahmoud, de 50 anos, que morava na cidade de Damasco com sua família, fazia viagens constantes à Dubai, nos EAU. No último dia 19 de janeiro, quando chegou à capital dos Emirados, dirigiu-se diretamente ao Hotel Al Bustan Rotana e hospedou-se no quarto 230. No dia seguinte, sai para dar uma volta pela cidade e retorna por volta das 8h30.

A partir desse momentos, entra em operação os 11 agentes do Mossad (que em Hebraico quer dizer “Instituto”, que é o nome do Instituto de Espionagem e Tarefas Especiais de Israel). Todos disfarçados (apenas uma mulher no grupo), usando bigodes e perucas falsas, usando passaportes europeus verdadeiros acabam entrando em seu quarto. E, por ironia, colocaram na porta o aviso “não perturbem”.

Mahmoud foi torturado antes de morrer. Foi eletrocutado. Apanhou dos agentes. Sofreu estrangulamento, sufocamento. E acabou sendo morto por uma injeção de veneno aplicada em suas veias. Uma morte cruel, à sangue frio, perpetradas pelos agentes do sionismo.

As repercussões e desdobramentos

Os 11 terroristas que agiram à mando de Israel, usaram passaportes de cidadãos ingleses, irlandeses, um francês e um alemão. Todos os cidadãos são reais, existem e moram em Israel, possuindo cidadania israelense. Mas não sabiam da operação. Um deles inclusive comentou à uma rádio israelense: “fui dormir com pneumonia e acordei assassino procurado em todo o mundo”. Não se sabe até hoje se pessoas dos serviços secretos desses países estiveram envolvidos em fornecer tais passaportes, todos originais, não falsificados, aos agentes, que os receberam no aeroporto Ben Gurion, em Tel Aviv.

O chefe de política dos EAU, general Dahi Jalfan Tamin, já não tem mais dúvidas. Essa operação foi feita pelos agentes do Mossad, que entraram ilegalmente em Dubai com esses passaportes. Já foram arrolados 26 pessoas suspeitas de participarem da operação, cujo centro de comando, foi montado na Áustria. Mandatos de prisão para todos os suspeitos foram emitidos pela Política Internacional – INTERPOL.

Essa operação secreta foi realizada com a concordância e a expressa autorização do próprio primeiro Ministro de Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu. O conceituado jornal inglês, Sunday Times divulgou essa notícia semana passada de que uma reunião em meados de janeiro teria ocorrido na sede do Mossad em Tel Aviv com a presença pessoal de Netanyahu e do chefe da agência de espionagem de Israel, Meir Dagan, de 63 anos e veterano dessas operações. A equipe teria estado inclusive presente e a frase que Netanyahu teria dito foi a seguinte: “O povo de Israel confia em vocês. Boa sorte”. A operação foi considerada relativamente simples e de “baixo risco” (sic), como quem diz, uma “simples rotina”, nos serviços executados por essa equipe, que leva o nome de Kidon que em hebraico quer dizer “Punhal” e é especializada em operações no exterior, de exterminar lutadores da resistência palestina e opositores do projeto sionista e colonial do Estado judeu.

Há um clima relativamente tenso entre os países cujos cidadãos tiveram seus passaportes usados, como a França, Alemanha, Irlanda e Inglaterra. Estes dois últimos chegaram a chamar os embaixadores de Israel junto às suas chancelarias para protestar formalmente pelo uso indevido dos passaportes. A França de Sarkozy exigiu completo esclarecimento e condenou com veemência o assassinato. A direitista Ângela Merkel preferiu o silêncio.

No governo de Israel reina o silêncio cúmplice de quem sabe de tudo, mas não pode confessar ao mundo. Reconhecer que isso foi feito pelo Mossad seria a confissão pública daquilo que todo o mundo já sabe: Israel é um estado bandido, um estado terrorista que passa por cima de todas as leis internacionais. Um estado pária na comunidade das nações.

Assim, ninguém admite em público a operação. Mas, a ex-chanceler, Tzipi Livni, hoje na oposição, líder do Kadima, partido de centro-direita, acabou confessando e vibrando publicamente com a operação. Disse publicamente que a morte de Mahmoud é “uma boa notícia” (sic), ou seja, uma alta autoridade, uma candidata a primeira Ministra nas últimas eleições (poderia ter sido nomeada como tal), vibra abertamente, não se constrange em apoiar o assassinato seletivo. É um péssimo exemplo ao mundo, mas uma confissão do que é Israel hoje no muno.

A União Europeia emitiu uma nota condenando essa operação e o uso indevido de passaportes de quatro de seus estados membros. Mas, cautelosa e subserviente à Israel e ao poder do sionismo internacional, não menciona na nota o nome desse país.

Do lado palestino, uma unanimidade nesse ponto. Todos os grupos, todas as facões em luta condenaram com veemência o assassinato. O enterro de Mahmoud em Damasco atraiu uma grande multidão. O líder no exílio do Hamas, Khaled Meshaal, fez veemente discurso emocionado, prometendo revidar essa brutal assassinato.

Esse episódio não deverá passar em branco. Mais uma vez, a paz vai ficando cada dia mais distante e quase impossível. Com práticas como essa, que Israel adota não há como chegar a uma paz justa e duradoura. Lamento tudo isso, mas os tempos de paz, de harmonia, de terra para os palestinos ainda estão distantes.

* Presidente do Sindicato dos Sociólogos do Estado de São Paulo, escritor, arabista e professor. Membro da Academia de Altos Estudos Ibero-Árabe de Lisboa e da International Sociological Association.

Fidel: The latest meeting with Lula

Reflections of Fidel

(Taken from CubaDebate)

I met him in Managua in July 1980, thirty years ago, during the commemoration of the first anniversary of the Sandinista Revolution, thanks to my contacts with supporters of Liberation Theology, which were initiated in Chile when I visited President Allende in 1971.

Through Frei Betto, I knew who Lula was, a labor leader in whom leftist Christians had placed their hopes at an early stage.

He was a modest worker in the metallurgical industry who stood out for his intelligence and prestige within the trade unions, in the great nation that was emerging from the darkness of the military dictatorship imposed by the yanki empire in the 1960s.

Brazil’s relations with Cuba had been excellent until the dominant power in the hemisphere forced them to succumb. Decades went by until they slowly returned to being what they are today.

Each country lived its own history. Our country had to endure exceptional pressure in the incredible stages experienced since 1959, in its struggle against the aggression of the most powerful empire to have existed in history.

For that reason, the meeting that has just taken place in Cancun and the decision to create a Community of Latin America and Caribbean States has great significance for us. No other institutional act in our hemisphere during the last century reflects a similar significance.

The agreement was reached in the midst of the gravest economic crisis that has taken place in the globalized world, coinciding with the greatest danger of an human environmental disaster and, at the same time, with the earthquake that destroyed Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti, the most painful human disaster in the history of our hemisphere, in the poorest country of the continent and the first in which slavery was eradicated.

While I was writing this "Reflection," just six weeks after the death of more than 200,000 people, according to official figures in that country, the dramatic news came in of the damage provoked by another earthquake in Chile, which resulted in the death of close to 1,000 people to date, according to official figures, and enormous material damage. Especially moving was the footage of the suffering of millions of Chileans materially or emotionally affected by that cruel blow of nature. Fortunately, Chile is a country with more experience with that type of phenomenon, much more developed and with more resources. If it hadn’t had more solid infrastructures and buildings, an incalculable number of people, possibly tens or even hundreds of thousands Chileans would have perished. There is talk of two million affected and potential losses that range from $15 billion to $30 billion. In its tragedy, it can count on the solidarity and sympathy of the peoples, among them ours, although given the type of cooperation needed there is little that Cuba can do, while its government was one of the first to express to Chile its sentiments of solidarity, when communications were still down.

The country that is currently putting to the test the capacity of the world to confront climate change and guarantee human survival is, without question, Haiti, for constituting a symbol of the poverty from which billions of people in the world are currently suffering, including a notable part of the peoples of our continent.

What has happened in Chile with an earthquake of the incredible magnitude of 8.8 on the Richter scale, although fortunately at a greater depth than the one that destroyed Port-au-Prince, obliges me to emphasize the importance and the duty of promoting the steps toward unity achieved in Cancun, although I have no illusions as to the difficulty and complexity of our struggle of ideas in the face of the effort of the empire and its allies, inside and outside of our countries, to frustrate the unifying and pro-independence task of our peoples.

I wish to confirm in writing the importance and symbolism that Lula’s visit and our latest meeting had for me, from a personal and revolutionary standpoint. Already close to the end of his mandate, he stated that he wished to visit his friend Fidel; an honorable description that I received from him. I believe that I know him well. On more than a few occasions we spoke fraternally, within and outside of Cuba.

On one occasion I had the honor of visiting him at his home, situated in a modest district of Sao Paulo, where he lived with his family. For me it was a moving encounter with him, his wife and his children. I will never forget the familial and healthy atmosphere of that home, and the sincere affection with which his neighbors greeted him, when Lula was already a prestigious labor and political leader. Nobody knew then if he would or would not reach the presidency of Brazil, given that the interests and forces opposing him were very great, but it gave me pleasure to talk with him. The post was not so important to Lula, either; what satisfied him, above all, was the pleasure of fighting, which he did with impeccable modesty; which he fully demonstrated when, having been defeated three times by his powerful adversaries, he only agreed to allow his nomination by the Workers Party under strong pressure from his sincerest friends.

I will not attempt to recount the times that we spoke before he was elected president; one of them, among the first, was in the mid-1980s when we were fighting in Havana against the Latin American foreign debt, which at that point amounted to $300 billion and had been repaid more than once over. He is a born fighter.

Three times, as I said, his adversaries, backed by huge economic and media resources, defeated him at the elections. However, his closest collaborators and friends knew that the time had come when that modest worker would be the candidate of the Workers Party and the forces of the left.

His opponents definitely underestimated him; they thought that he could not count on any majority in the legislative body. The USSR no longer existed. What could Lula signify at the head of Brazil, a nation of great wealth but scant development, in the hands of a rich and influential bourgeoisie?

However, neoliberalism was entering into crisis, the Bolivarian Revolution had triumphed in Venezuela, Menem was in free fall, Pinochet had disappeared from the scene and Cuba was resisting. But Lula was elected when Bush fraudulently won in the United States, stealing the victory from his rival Al Gore.

A difficult stage was beginning. The initial steps of the new president of the United States were to set in motion the arms race and with that, the role of the military-industrial complex, and to cut taxes for the rich.

On the pretext of combating terrorism, he reinitiated the wars of conquest and institutionalized murder and torture as instruments of imperialist domination. Facts related to the secret prisons, which exposed the complicity of the allies of the United States with that policy, cannot be published. In this way, he accelerated the worst economic crisis of those which, in a cyclical and growing manner, accompany developed capital, but this time with the privileges of Bretton Woods and without any of its commitments.

Brazil, for its part, in the last eight years under Lula’s direction, surmounted obstacles, increased its technological development, and promoted the weight of the Brazilian economy. The most difficult part was his first term, but he was successful and gained experience. With his tireless battling, serenity, sangfroid and growing dedication to the task, in such difficult international conditions, Brazil reached a GDP of close to $2 trillion. Information varies according to the sources, but all of them place it among the 10 largest economies in the world. Despite that, with a surface area of 8.524 million square kilometers, compared to the United States, which possesses just a little more territory, Brazil has only reached 12% of the gross domestic product of that imperialist country, which is plundering the world and deploying its armed forces in more than 1,000 military bases throughout the planet.

I had the privilege of attending his investiture in late 2002. Also present was Hugo Chávez, who had just confronted the traitorous coup d’état of April 11th of that year, and subsequently, the oil strike organized by Washington. Bush was already president. The relations between Brazil, the Bolivarian Republic and Cuba were always good, with mutual respect.

I had a serious accident in October 2004, which seriously limited my activities for months, and became gravely ill in late July 2006, in virtue of which I did not hesitate to delegate my functions as the head of the [Communist] Party and the State, in the proclamation of July 31st of that year, with a provisional nature, which I soon afforded a definitive one when I understood that I would not be in a position to assume them once again.

With respect to the gravity of my health, it allowed me to study and meditate; I devoted myself to that and to reviewing materials concerning our Revolution, and to publishing "Reflections" now and then.

After falling sick, I have had the privilege of being visited by Lula every time he has traveled to our country and speaking at length with him. I will not say that I always agreed with all of his politics. I am, on principle, opposed to the production of biofuels based on products that can be utilized as food, conscious that hunger is and may be increasingly a great tragedy for humanity.

However — and I say this in all frankness — this is not a problem created by Brazil, much less by Lula. It is an inseparable part of the world economy imposed by imperialism and its rich allies, who, in subsidizing their agricultural production, protect their internal markets and compete on the world market with food exports from Third World countries. These, in turn, are forced to import in exchange industrial articles produced with their own raw materials and energy resources, having inherited their poverty from centuries of colonialism. I perfectly understand that Brazil had no alternative, in the face of disloyal competition and U.S. and European subsidies, but to increase ethanol production.

The infant mortality rate in Brazil is still 23.2 per 1,000 live births, and the maternal one is 110 per 100,000 births, within the industrialized and rich countries, it is less than 5 and 15, respectively. Many other similar such figures could be cited.

Beet sugar, subsidized by Europe, snatched away from our country the market for sugar derived from sugar cane, precarious and temporary agricultural and industrial work which kept sugar workers unemployed for a large part of the time. The United States, for its part, also took over our best lands and their companies owned our industry. One day, abruptly, they stripped us of our sugar quota and blockaded our country in order to crush the Revolution and Cuba’s independence.

Today, Brazil has developed the cultivation of sugar cane, soy, and corn with high-performance machines that can be used for those crops with extremely high productivity. One day when I observed film footage of a 40,000-hectare piece of land in Ciego de Avila dedicated to soy cultivation, in rotation with corn, where they will try to work throughout the whole year, I exclaimed: that is the ideal socialist agricultural enterprise, highly mechanized with very high productivity per person and per hectare.

The problems of agriculture and its installations in the Caribbean are hurricanes, which in a growing number, are devastating its lands.

Also, our country has elaborated and signed with Brazil the financing and construction of an extremely modern port in Mariel, which will be of enormous importance for our economy.

In Venezuela, they are using Brazilian agricultural and industrial technology to produce sugar and use bagasse as a source of thermoelectric energy. They are advance-party teams which are working in a likewise socialist enterprise. In the Bolivarian Republic, they are using ethanol to improve the harmful environmental effects of gasoline.

Capitalism developed consumer societies and also the waste of fuel, which produced the risk of dramatic climate change. Nature took 400 million years to create what our species is consuming in just two centuries. Science has not yet solved the problem of what energy will replace that which is now generated by oil; nobody knows how much time it will require, and how much it will cost to solve it on time. Will it be available? That is what was discussed in Copenhagen, and the Summit was a total failure.

Lula told me that when ethanol costs 70% of the value of gasoline, it is no longer profitable to produce. With the largest forest on the planet, Brazil is to progressively reduce tree felling by 80%, he said.

Today it has the best technology in the world for drilling at sea, and can extract fuel located at a depth of 7,000 meters of water and in the sea bed. Thirty years ago, that would have seemed like a science fiction story.

He explained the high-level educational programs that Brazil proposes to take forward. He highly values the role of China at a world level. He said with pride that trade with that country has risen to $40 billion.

One thing is indisputable: the metal worker has currently become an outstanding and prestigious statesman who is listened to respectfully in all international meetings.

He is proud of having received the honor of the Olympic Games for Brazil in 2016 by virtue of the excellent program presented in Denmark. It is also to be the venue for the [FIFA] World Cup in 2014. All of this has been the fruit of the projects presented by Brazil, which surpassed those of their competitors.

One great demonstration of his selflessness was his refusal to seek reelection, and he trusts that the Workers Party will continue to govern Brazil.

Some persons, envious of his prestige and his glory, and worse still, those working for the empire, criticized him for visiting Cuba. They utilized for that the vile slander that has been used against Cuba for a half century.

Lula has known for many years that in our country, nobody was every tortured, no adversary’s assassination was ever ordered, and the people have never been lied to. He has the assurance that truth is the inseparable companion of his Cuban friends.

From Cuba, he left for our neighbor, Haiti. We informed him of our ideas about what we are proposing in terms of a sustainable, efficient program, especially important and very economic for Haiti. He knows that more than 100,000 Haitians were treated by our doctors and graduates of the Latin American School of Medicine after the earthquake. We talked about serious things; I know about his ardent desires to help that noble and suffering people.

I will keep an indelible memory of my most recent meeting with the president of Brazil, and I do not hesitate to proclaim it.

Fidel Castro Ruz

March 1, 2010

12:15 p.m.

Translated by Granma International