Information Clearing House 16 December 2013

16 December 2013 — Information Clearing House

Federal Judge Says NSA Program Appears to Violate Constitution 
By Pete Williams
A federal judge rules that the National Security Agency’s program of gathering data on all telephone calls made in the US is unconstitutional.
 
 

Saudi Royal Blasts U.S.’s Mideast Policy
By Jay Solomon
“The U.S. gave us the impression that they were going to do things in Syria that they finally didn’t,” Prince Turki said.
 
 
What If a Drone Strike Hit an American Wedding?
By Conor Friedersdorf
Can you imagine the wall-to-wall press coverage, the outrage, and the empathy for the victims that would follow if an American wedding were attacked in this fashion?
 
 
Sen. McCain, Interventionism’s ‘Energizer Bunny’
By Daniel McAdams
Fresh off his trip to Libya, where he was granted an award by the military on the same day the Libyan parliament declared Sharia law, McCain was this weekend on the streets of Kiev.
 
 
Tony Benn: Blair Committed War Crimes
Video
Veteran Labour minister and socialist, Tony Benn gives his take on the current leadership, austerity and what the future holds.
 
 
Inside the Saudi 9/11 “Coverup”
By Paul Sperry
A pair of lawmakers who recently read the redacted portion say they are “absolutely shocked” at the level of foreign state involvement in the attacks.
 
 
America’s Child Soldiers
JROTC and the Militarizing of America
By Ann Jones
Why should Washington help the children of Sudan or Yemen escape war when it spares no expense right here at home to press our own impressionable, idealistic, ambitious American kids into military “service”?
 
 
The Play’s the Thing
By Chris Hedges
Faith, when you live in the totalitarian world of the prison, is important.
 
 
What the World Could Be
Short Video Offers Economic Solutions
By Carl Herman
We have created a simple list of actions everyone can easily implement to make a significant difference in the world.
 
 
The Selling of Attention Deficit Disorder
By ALAN SCHWARZ
 
“This is a concoction to justify the giving out of medication at unprecedented and unjustifiable levels.”
 

Hard News  

 
Syrian rebels execute 80 civilians outside Damascus: ‘Whole families murdered’:
Syrian military sources: Over 80 civilians in a town northwest of the Syrian capital of Damascus have been executed by Islamist rebels.
 
 
Barrel bombs kill at least 76 people in Syria: Pro-rebel activists say:
Regime air raids using barrel bombs on rebel-controlled areas of Syria’s second city of Aleppo at the weekend killed at least 76 people, including 28 children, activists said on Monday.
 
 
Qatar Red Crescent Funds Syrian Rebel Arms:
“Through the cleric, Mahmoud was able to acquire 30 RPG launchers for $900,000 and 300 shells for $300,000, which were then transferred to Syria by a smuggler known as Anwar or his nom de guerre Abu Salah.” The smuggler then handed over the weapons to the Syrian national known as Abu Abdullah in the Damascus countryside.
 
 
Report: Turkey Shipped Arms to Syria Rebels:
Turkey has shipped 47 tonnes of weapons to Syrian rebels since June despite repeated government denials, a local newspaper reported on Monday.
 
 
UN launches $6.5bn Syria appeal:
United Nations warns that nearly three-quarters of country’s population will need humanitarian support in 2014
 
 
VIDEO: Syria humanitarian crisis explained in 60 seconds.:
BBC News analyses the impact of Syria’s 33-month conflict on its people – in 60 seconds.
 
 
Bush- Blair Legacy Continues As – Car bombs hit Shiite pilgrims as Iraq unrest kills 68:
 Car bombs ripped through Shiite pilgrims near Baghdad while militants attacked a city council headquarters and a police station, as Iraq-wide violence killed at least 68 people Monday, officials said.
 
 
Israeli Soldier Killed On Lebanon Border:
Israel shoots two Lebanese soldiers after one of its troops is shot dead by a sniper on the Lebanon border.
 
 
Israeli, Lebanese, UN officers to meet after cross-border killing:
Israeli, Lebanese and U.N. officials said they would meet on Monday to defuse tensions after a Lebanese soldier shot dead an Israeli counterpart along the border between the two countries, Israel’s defense minister said.
 
 
The Palestinian calm before the storm:
A culture of resistance is simmering below the surface, but it’s slowly coming to a boil.
 
 
Qatari-funded fuel enters Gaza to ease power crisis:
Gaza’s 1.8 million people have been enduring daily blackouts of around 12 hours since the power plant was switched off 43 days ago due to a fuel shortage caused by neighbouring Egypt’s closure of smuggling tunnels.
 
 
U.S. academic group votes to boycott Israeli universities:
The American Studies Association, which has 5,000 members, cites ‘Israel’s violation of international law and UN resolutions’ among reasons for boycott of Israeli academic institutions.
 
 
EU to ease sanctions as soon as Iran curbs nuclear work:
European Union governments pledged on Monday to suspend some sanctions against Iran as soon as the U.N. nuclear watchdog verifies that Tehran has curbed its atomic work under last month’s landmark agreement.
 
 
White House tightens enforcement of Iran sanctions amid meetings with Israelis:
What is the role of Israel in shaping US foreign policy? The White House has now tightened its enforcement of sanctions on Iran, potentially threatening the breakthrough deal with Iran, in the midst of high-level meetings between White House security officials and Israeli officials, at the White House.
 
 
Professor Alan Dershowitz: Ignore International Law : Video –
Alan Dershowitz says that Israel should ignore international law when deciding how to deal with Iran.
 
 
Money and 100 guns are given as compensation to victims’ families of the drone in Qaifah:
Yemeni authorities offered 32 million YR and 100 guns as compensation to victims’ families as a result of Air raid that took place in Qaifah in the al-Baida governorate, leaving 25 killed and wounded last Thursday.
 
 
Yemeni parliament votes to ban drone attacks:
“Members of parliament voted to stop what drones are doing in Yemeni airspace, stressing the importance of preserving innocent civilian lives against any attack and maintaining Yemeni sovereignty,” SABA news agency reported.
 
 
Yemen vote on ban unlikely to end US drone strikes:
Yemen’s parliament, which is dominated by the party of ousted president Ali Abdullah Saleh and the Islamist Islah party, voted on Sunday in favour of halting drone attacks.
 
 
Nelson Mandela, Drone Victim:
Nelson Mandela was on the U.S. terrorist watch list until 2008. Under President Obama, terrorists are subject to summary termination by drone strike. What would have happened to Mandela had Obama been president before 2008? Boom!
 
 
At least 21, including women and children, killed in Congo’s east:
At least 21 people, including women and a baby, were killed over the weekend in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, the U.N. peacekeeping mission there said on Monday.
 
 
10 Afghan “militants” killed in army operation:
“Based on a tip off, the Afghan army launched an operation in Godar area of Andar district Sunday night. As a result 10 armed insurgents, including a key militant leader named Mawlawi Raouf, were killed in the raid,” the army spokesman in the province Nazifullah Sultani said.
 
 
4 Afghan soldiers killed in bomb attacks:
Four Afghan army soldiers were killed and six others wounded in separate bomb attacks since late Sunday, said the country’s defense ministry on Monday.
 
 
Australian troops leave Afghanistan:
“We know that they’ve paid a high price – 40 dead and 261 seriously wounded – but that sacrifice has not been in vain. PM Tony Abbott says
 
 
3 policemen killed, 2 injured in NW Pakistan’s blast:
At least three policemen were killed and two others injured when a bomb went off near a bomb disposal unit’s vehicle in Pakistan’s northwest Peshawar city on Monday morning, local media reported.
 
 
Chinese state media says clash in Xinjiang leaves 16 dead:
Sixteen people have been killed in a clash in China’s restive far western region of Xinjiang, home to the mostly Muslim Uighur ethnic minority, state media has reported.
 
 
Two Guantánamo prisoners transferred to Saudi Arabia:
US officials said the two Saudis have been transferred to the custody of their own government after a security review. Neither man had been charged with a crime.
 
 
The logic of 9/11: US-Saudi-Pakistani connections:
PNAC (Project for a New American Century) published a “grand strategy” in 2000 calling for the US to maintain its unrivaled superpower status, though this might require a “new Pearl Harbor” to justify launching preemptive wars against suspect nations.
 
 
Venezuela finds no explosives on Air France flight:
More than 60 experts comb plane after French intelligence warned terrorists might try to blow it up
 
 
The Rich Get Their Oily Way again in Mexico:
Are we living in a time when ordinary people have forgotten their history, when all those who fail to remember the past will be condemned to relive its harsh reality?
 
 
Chile election victor Michelle Bachelet pledges major reforms:
Michelle Bachelet has promised major tax and education reforms to help ease Chile’s social divisions after sweeping back to power with a huge majority in presidential elections on Sunday. The centre-left candidate won with about 62% support, the highest share of votes for any presidential candidate
 
 
McCain meets with Ukrainian opposition, backs pro-EU protests:
” McCain told reporters. “I look forward to visiting the square tomorrow and I am proud of what the people of Ukraine are doing, so they can restore democracy to their country.”
 
 
McCain: CIA Misled Congress on Missing American:
McCain, R-Ariz., told CNN’s “State of the Union” that “the CIA did not tell the truth to the Congress” about Levinson.
 
 
FBI Sabotaged Levinson Investigation, Family Lawyer Says:
“Bob worked undercover on Iranian issues with a Russian gentleman of some dubious background” who “had been dealing undercover with Iranian nationals on very high-priority issues for the CIA.”
 
 
Justin Raimondo: Who Was Robert Levinson Working For?:
A spy story with all the bells and whistles: money-laundering, organized crime, and “rogue” CIA agents
 
 
Federal judge says NSA’s phone surveillance program is likely unconstitutional:
A federal court judge in Washington, DC ruled Monday that the United States National Security Agency’s controversial practice of routinely collecting the telephone records of millions of Americans may run afoul of the US Constitution.,:
 
 
Edward Snowden statement on today’s NSA ruling:
 
 
NSA Coworker Remembers The Real Edward Snowden:
‘A Genius Among Geniuses’: “That kid was a genius among geniuses,” says the NSA staffer. “NSA is full of smart people, but anybody who sat in a meeting with Ed will tell you he was in a class of his own…I’ve never seen anything like it.”
 
 
The Sad Decline of ’60 Minutes’ Continues With This Week’s NSA Whitewash:
Just in recent months: the horrid hit on Americans with disabilities, the Lara Logan affair, and now tonight’s whitewash of NSA (and bonus slam vs. Edward Snowden), hosted by longtime FBI/police/NSA propagandist John Miller. Good night and good luck!
 
 
Almost all the U.S. Army’s secret military bases across the globe revealed on Google and Bing:
The Pentagon says there are around 5,000 bases in total with around 600 overseas.
 
 
Guantanamo-style grandmother tries to perform citizen’s arrest on judge:
A JUDGE was yesterday forced to retreat from his bench after a 79-year-old disabled grandmother tried to perform a citizen’s arrest on him in court. Ms D’Arcy declared: “I am making a citizen’s arrest on you Patrick Durcan for making Irish people active allies and participation on illegal wars.”
 
 
Anti-nuclear activist nun says answering her Christian calling landed her in prison:
The 83-year-old Rice has chosen to spend the final chapter of her life behind bars. She faces a possible 30-year prison sentence on charges of interfering with national security and damaging federal property, resulting from an act of civil disobedience she committed in July last year.
 
 
The Selling of Attention Deficit Disorder:
“The numbers make it look like an epidemic. Well, it’s not. It’s preposterous,” Dr. Conners, a psychologist and professor emeritus at Duke University, said in a subsequent interview. “This is a concoction to justify the giving out of medication at unprecedented and unjustifiable levels.”
 
 
Boston PD’s new assault rifles raise concern over militarization of police:
Saying it has to keep up in arms race with street criminals, department will put AR-15 rifles in patrol cars
 
 
Boston police halt license tracking system as media probe points to privacy violations:
Officials in the Massachusetts capital have put the brakes on using license plate readers, after inadvertently releasing sensitive surveillance data to the media which probed it and indicated the technology could have been misused.
 
 
New Orleans cops can bust you for prostitution if they think you have too many condoms:
If police suspect a person of being a prostitute, they can arrest them if they discover that they’re carrying condoms
 
 
“Makes Absolutely No Sense”:
David Cay Johnston on Budget Deal That Helps Billionaires, Not the Poor
 
 
America’s Food Stamp Cut Stories You Probably Haven’t Heard About:
In November, Congress cut food stamps for nearly 50 million people, and even more cuts are on the table.
 
 
Thousands of Homeless People Live in Shantytowns at the Epicenter of High-Tech, Super-Rich Silicon Valley:
Four homeless men in Silicon Valley did not make it through the season’s first bout of sub-freezing temperatures. Over the last two weeks, three of them froze to death on the streets of San Jose, not far from the Jungle.

Cost Of War

 
Number Of Iraqis Slaughtered In US War And Occupation Of Iraq 1,455,590

 

Number of U.S. Military Personnel Sacrificed (Officially acknowledged) In America’s War On Iraq:  4,883

Number Of  International Occupation Force Troops Slaughtered In Afghanistan :3,397

Cost of War in Iraq & Afghanistan
Total Cost of Wars Since 2001
      

$1,497,526,306,056

 

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