Information Clearing House June 2003 – Part 2

June 2003 — Information Clearing House

[From the Archives. I’ve been archiving ICH digests since 2003. Unfortunately, an unknown number of the links are now dead, so I can’t guarantee that the link will take you where you want to go. WB]

For the Month of June 2003 – Part 2

Drowning, First-Class Style

The fact is, we are acquiring an empire. But the men in charge do not want to pay for it. They have no serious interest in providing security, infrastructure or civil administration to the territories they have conquered.

http://tompaine.com/feature2.cfm/ID/8019

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Information Clearing House June 2003 – Part 1

June 2003 — Information Clearing House

[From the Archives. I’ve been archiving ICH digests since 2003. Unfortunately, an unknown number of the links are now dead, so I can’t guarantee that the link will take you where you want to go. WB]

For the Month of June 2003 – Part 1

6/02 US FCC Loosens Media Ownership Limits

http://reuters.com/financeNewsArticle.jhtml?type=mergersNews&storyID=2863142

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The never-ending story: 45 minutes from Niger By William Bowles

28 June 2003

Will it never end? Obviously not, because in upping the ante, the government has introduced yet another layer of dissembling in trying to shift the focus from the government’s web of lies onto its spin doctors, headed by Alistair Campbell. So if and when the shit hits the fan, it’ll be Campbell who gets covered, not the ministers in government, principally Blair and Straw, at least that’s the theory. What is critical about the display we’ve been subjected to over the past week, is what it reveals about the nature of what passes for governance in this ‘new’ imperialist epoch.

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Red Herring Day By William Bowles

26 June 2003

A reader sent me the following note after reading my essay, ‘Exaggerate’ on Jack Straw’s dissembling over the use and definition of words: A letter he’d read on Ceefax:

‘posed the question that Straw’s use of the word ‘current’ by any definition means that the threat posed by Saddam Hussein’s WMD was not ‘immediate’, ‘imminent’ or even a mere 45 minutes away but precisely as the dossier was being compiled. However as Straw clearly states if the evidence didn’t justify a very soon to be realised threat, then it equally cannot justify a threat existing at the very time the dossier was being written.’

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Incredible! By William Bowles

26 June 2003

‘The charge against the Government is not one of lying, but that it failed to tell the whole truth’

This is the London Independent’s incredible editorial headline today (26/06/03) over the lies told by the UK government to justify the invasion of Iraq. Okay, for the sake of argument, we’ll accept the Independent’s outrageous head and ask the question, what is the whole truth? What did the government fail to tell us?

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Spinning out of control By William Bowles

26 June 2003

Wonderful! Alistair Campbell accuses the BBC of ‘lying’ because, he asserts, the BBC accused the government of lying over the ’45 minute’ scenario. Is this a desert storm in a teacup? Whilst the two monopolies go at each other, the essential issues simply don’t enter into the discussion at all, from either side. Whilst they squabble over whether or not one of the other lied, the real issue, why we went to war, disappears from sight.

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Exaggeration By William Bowles

25 June 2003

Exaggeration: overestimate, overstate, hyperbolize, enlarge on, distort, expand, magnify, misquote and overdraw

The farce of an ‘investigation’ into the ‘rush to war’ continues in the UK as does the media’s complicity in presenting the reasons entirely divorced from the context and history of the trajectory of Western imperialism. The main argument being advanced by ‘critics’ of the war in Parliament, is that the government ‘exaggerated’ the threat in order to convince us of the need to go to war.

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Through a glass objectively By William Bowles

25 June 2003

The idea that there is some kind of ‘objective’ ground from which to view events, particularly of the political variety, is a long-held fantasy, especially of British journalism. It’s still taught in British universities would you believe, that out there, somewhere, there’s a space that the journalist can occupy, which sits perfectly in the middle, between one view and another (pre-supposing of course, that there are only two sides to an issue).

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Palestine: US plays the shell game By William Bowles

23 June 2003

Statements by secretary of state Colin Powell would seem to represent a change of heart on the part of the US over the Israeli position on the future of a Palestinian state. But does a call for the establishment of a Palestinian state and the removal of a few shacks (some not even occupied) erected in remote positions on Palestinian territory, represent a fundamental change in US policy, namely that it’s putting ‘pressure’ on Sharon to rollback the expansionist policy that has been in place since 1948? Statements by Sharon signal that regardless, the current expansionist policy will continue. When asked whether building would continue in one large West Bank settlement, Sharon said, ‘We just build.’

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May the force be with you? By William Bowles

21 June 2003

Messianism seems to be the thing with the Bush government. A God-given mission to cleanse the world of evil, or ‘creative destruction’ as Michael Ledeen puts it. There are those who are making dark comparisons with the Third Reich but perhaps because of my background, upbringing or whatever you want to call one’s past, I have resisted the temptation to call the Bush clique a bunch of Fascists.

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Iran: First it was ‘October Surprise’ – now it’s No Surprise By William Bowles

20 June 2003

History is a great teacher but often, you’ve got to dig deep to find out what’s really going on and as the US propaganda machine gets into gear for ‘regime change’ in Iran, it’s already obvious that unlike the Iraqi invasion, the technique of the Big Lie is not working the way the White House would like it to. The coming Iran ‘adventure’, as with earlier essays I’ve penned, was triggered by names that I’ve had the dubyaous pleasure of typing before, most notably Michael Ledeen, doyen of the ultra-right, whose role on Iran-Contra and the October Surprise of the late 70s and eighties, was he hoped, lost in the mist of time, especially to our current, historically-challenged populace. As with DNA testing, it’s now possible to exhume events long thought dead, with the hope that this time round, we can get a conviction.

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Instant Replay By William Bowles

19 June 2003

WMDs Iranian style? Let me quote from the UN press release on the issue of Iran’s supposed nuclear weapons programme:

‘‘Mr. ElBaradei noted that the report points out that corrective actions are being taken in cooperation with the Iranian authorities. But he added: ‘I continue to call on Iran, as with all States with significant nuclear programmes, to conclude and bring into force an additional protocol at an early date, in order to enhance the Agency’s ability to provide credible assurances regarding the peaceful nature of its nuclear activities.’

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Iranies of Iran William Bowles

16 June 2003

I had to delve back into the archives to get a handle on the current bizarre and totally hypocritical US attitude toward Iran. Now let me get this straight: in 1979 there was a popular revolution which overthrew the US-installed regime of the Shah of Iran, who had been put in power, when in 1958, a popular revolution threatened US oil interests in Iran (who had already ousted British control of Iranian oil following WWII).

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While the US crows, Iraq resists By William Bowles

14 June 2003

The USUK would have us believe that those Iraqis who are now fighting back against occupation are the ‘remnants’ of Saddam’s regime. Yet what evidence is there for this assertion? The bottom line is none, aside from leaflets, one of which is apparently a message from Saddam. But aside from the leaflets, there’s not a single shred of evidence to support the idea. Continue reading

Spooking the Spooks By William Bowles

12 June 2003

Having spooked the entire population with tales of terror as part of its programme to win over the population to its policies, the Bush administration is faced with the reality of being hoisted by its own petard as the saying goes. As more and more information comes out about the real nature of the repressive tactics being used and the role of big business in propelling the entire insane machine, it’s becoming clearer and clearer to citizens, that they have more to fear from their own government than they have from any elusive enemy. Continue reading