Tag Archive: Xe


Politics and Legislation

Payola for the Most Profitable Corporations in History
And Why Taxpayers Shouldn’t Stand for It Any More

By Bill McKibben

April 06, 2012 — Along with “five dollar a gallon gas,” the energy watchword for the next few months is: “subsidies.” Last week, for instance, New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez proposed ending some of the billions of dollars in handouts enjoyed by the fossil-fuel industry with a “Repeal Big Oil Tax Subsidies Act.” It was, in truth, nothing to write home about — a curiously skimpy bill that only targeted oil companies, and just the five richest of them at that. Left out were coal and natural gas, and you won’t be surprised to learn that even then it didn’t pass.

Still, President Obama is now calling for an end to oil subsidies at every stop on his early presidential-campaign-plus-fundraising blitz — even at those stops where he’s also promising to “drill everywhere.” And later this month Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders will introduce a much more comprehensive bill that tackles all fossil fuels and their purveyors (and has no chance whatsoever of passing this Congress).

Whether or not the bill passes, those subsidies are worth focusing on. After all, we’re talking at least $10 billion in freebies and, depending on what you count, possibly as much as $40 billion annually in freebie cash for an energy industry already making historic profits. If attacking them is a convenient way for the White House to deflect public anger over rising gas prices, it is also a perfect fit for the new worldview the Occupy movement has been teaching Americans. (Not to mention, if you think about it, the Tea Party focus on deficits.) So count on one thing: we’ll be hearing a lot more about them this year.

Read Full Article Here

Issa, Grassley hammer White House for stonewalling on ‘Fast and Furious’ witness

By Michael Volpe

The Obama administration is stonewalling two lawmakers’ requests to interview a former member of the National Security staff in connection with the failed Operation Fast and Furious gun-walking program, according to a March 28 letter obtained by The Daily Caller.

California Rep. Darrell Issa and Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, both Republicans, requested a response by April 4 to their letter, which asks for an interview with Kevin O’Reilly, that former staffer. But the White House, according to the letter, is blocking access to him.

Through staff, both Grassley and Issa confirmed to TheDC on Thursday that April 4 came and went without any response from the Obama administration.

In their letter to White House Counsel Karen Ruemmler, Grassley and Issa cited a cryptic email exchange between O’Reilly and William Newell, the special agent in charge of the Phoenix office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives at the time Fast and Furious was implemented. The emails, their letter suggests, indicate that Newell was going around his chain of command to personally brief the White House about developments in the gun-walking program.

“You didn’t get this from me,” Newell wrote to O’Reilly in a Sept. 3, 2010 email about Fast and Furious, according to the letter from Issa and Grassley.

“Just don’t want ATF HQ to find out,” Newell wrote in am earlier email, “especially since this is what they should be doing (briefing you!).”

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which Issa chairs, has not yet made complete copies of those emails available to reporters.

Read Full Article Here

***********************************************************************************************

Economy

Greek mourners: it was not suicide, it was financial murder – video

Athenians gather in the spot where a 77-year-old man shot himself dead over debts on Wednesday and a woman reads the man’s suicide letter to the crowd. Later in the evening the vigil turns to chaos when riot police use teargas on protesters. Mourners say the police attacks were unprovoked

View video Here

Ireland: Bailed Out Banks are in Process of Going Bust Again

By David McWilliam

April 06, 2012 “Information Clearing House” — Ernest Hemingway was once asked how did he go bankrupt. The great man thought for a second and then replied: “I went bankrupt in two ways, gradually and then suddenly.”

When we see the figures coming from the various banks, it is not difficult to see that something similar is happening in Ireland. Whether the banks end up bust again, the second time in three years, will depend on how the ECB reacts but it looks like the banks, having been bailed out and having received huge government capital injections, could now be in the process of going bust.

As Mr Hemingway observed, people and entities go bust gradually, at first — this is the phase we are in. Then they go bust overnight. History suggests that after that happens, the economy will recover because we have to start again.

Interestingly, the reason that the banks might be going bust gradually is because the ECB is giving them money at 1pc so that they can mask the inconsistencies in their business model for another year or two. But when that money runs out or the ECB’s policy reverses, which it must eventually, where will they get the cash to operate?

Read Full Article Here

U.S. Standard of Living Has Fallen More Than 50%

By Jeff Nielson

April 06, 2012 “Information Clearing House” — In writing about the relentless collapse of Western economies, I frequently point to “forty years of plummeting wages” for Western workers, in real dollars. However, where I have been remiss is in quantifying the magnitude of this collapse in Western wages.

On several occasions I have glibly referred to how it now takes two spouses working to equal the wages of a one-income family of forty years ago. Unfortunately that is now an understatement. In fact, Western wages have plummeted so low that a two-income family is now (on average) 15% poorer than a one-income family of 40 years ago.

Using the year 2000 as the numerical base from which to “zero” all of the numbers, real wages peaked in 1970 at around $20/hour. Today the average worker makes $8.50 hour – more than 57% less than in 1970. And since the average wage directly determines the standard of living of our society, we can see that the average standard of living in the U.S. has plummeted by over 57% over a span of 40 years.

There are no “tricks” here. Indeed, all of the tricks are used by our governments. The green line shows average wages, discounted by inflation calculated with the same methodology for all 40 years. Obviously that is the only way in which we can compare any data over time: through applying identical parameters to it each year.

Then we have the blue line: showing wage data discounted with our “official” inflation rate. The problem? The methodology used by our governments to calculate inflation in 1975 was different from the method they used in 1985, which was different than the method they used in 1995, which was different than the method they used in 2005.

Read Full Article Here

Only 120,000 jobs added in March, missing economic expectations

By Vicki Needham

The economy added 120,000 jobs in March, well below what economists had predicted, while the unemployment rate ticked down slightly to 8.2 percent.

The number is nearly half the 210,000 expected and ends the streak of three straight months in which the economy added more than 200,000 jobs, according to a Labor Department report released Friday.

The news isn’t what the White House would want to see just as the labor market seemed to be improving at a faster pace.

With the economy remaining a top issue for voters, any perception that its growth is slowing down could hurt President Obama’s reelection effort.

Republicans immediately pounced on the news, attacking Obama’s economic policies.

Mitt Romney, the front-runner for the Republican nomination, used the numbers to criticize the president.

Read Full Article Here

***********************************************************************************************

Wars and Rumors of War

We want war, and we want it now

By Pepe Escobar

It was deep into the night, somewhere over Siberia, in a Moscow to Beijing flight (BRIC to BRIC?) when the thought, like a lightning bolt, began to take hold.

What the hell is wrong with those Arabs?

Maybe it was the narcotic effect of that perennially dreadful Terminal F at Sheremetyevo airport – straight out of a Brejnev gulag. Maybe it was the anticipation of finding more about the Russia-China joint naval exercise scheduled for late April.

Or it was simply another case of “you can take the boy out of the Middle East, but you can’t take the Middle East out of the boy”.

With friends like these … It all had to do with that Friends of Syria (fools for war?) meeting in Istanbul. Picture Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal – who seems to have a knack for sending US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton into rapture – feverishly arguing that the House of Saud, those paragons of democracy, had “a duty” to weaponize the Syrian “revolutionary” opposition.

And picture al-Faisal ordering an immediate ceasefire by the Bashar al-Assad government, guilty – according to the House of Saud – not only of cruel repression but crimes against humanity.

No; this was not a Monty Python sketch.

To make sure he was milking the right cow, al-Faisal also said that the Gulf Counter-revolution Club (GCC), also known as Gulf Cooperation Council, wanted to get further into bed with the United States. Translation, if any was needed; the US-GCC tag team, as expressed by the weaponization of the Syrian “rebels”, is meant to body slam Iran…..

Read Full Article Here

U.S. trained terror group

By Glenn Greenwald

When the U.S. wants to fund, train, arm or otherwise align itself with a Terrorist group or state sponsor of Terror — as it often does — it at least usually has the tact to first remove them from its formal terrorist list (as the U.S. did when it wanted to support Saddam in 1982 and work with Libya in 2006), or it just keeps them off the list altogether despite what former Council on Foreign Relations writer Lionel Beehner described as “mounds of evidence that [they] at one time or another abetted terrorists” (as it has done with close U.S. allies in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, along with the El Salvadoran death squads and Nicaraguan contras armed and funded in the 1980s by the Reagan administration). But according to a new, multi-sourced report from The New Yorker‘s Seymour Hersh, the U.S. did not even bother going through those motions when, during the Bush years, it trained the Iranian dissident group Mujahideen-e-Khalq (MEK) at a secretive Department of Energy site in Nevada:

It was here that the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) conducted training, beginning in 2005, for members of the Mujahideen-e-Khalq, a dissident Iranian opposition group known in the West as the M.E.K. . . . The M.E.K.’s ties with Western intelligence deepened after the fall of the Iraqi regime in 2003, and JSOC began operating inside Iran in an effort to substantiate the Bush Administration’s fears that Iran was building the bomb at one or more secret underground locations. Funds were covertly passed to a number of dissident organizations, for intelligence collection and, ultimately, for anti-regime terrorist activities. Directly, or indirectly, the M.E.K. ended up with resources like arms and intelligence. Some American-supported covert operations continue in Iran today, according to past and present intelligence officials and military consultants.

Read Full Article Here

Babar Ahmad: This interview is the last chance of ending my nightmare

Uploaded by StoptheWarCoalition on Apr 6, 2012

On 5 April 2012, Barbar Ahmad became the first prisoner in a British jail to be interviewed on television from behind bars in this BBC broadcast. He has been held for eight years in a UK jail without charge or trial, during which time he has been fighting extradition to the United States under controversial “war on terror” legislation. If he has done anything wrong, as a British citizen he asks that he be tried in his own country. MP Caroline Lucas, who has called for a public inquiry, says, “Babar Ahmad’s case shames us all.” To learn more about Babar Ahmad’s case, go to http://freebabarahmad.com

Kurdish opposition quits Syrian National Council

By Lauren Williams
The Daily Star

ISTANBUL: The Syrian Kurdish opposition bloc has walked away from the Syrian National Council, exposing deep and problematic rifts within the umbrella opposition group just days after international leaders granted the body extra recognition after attempts to unify.

Syrian Kurdish opposition leader Abdul-Baki Yousef, a leading member of the Kurdish Yakiti party in Syria and former member of the Kurdish National Council, charged host country Turkey with “pressuring the SNC” to omit the demands of the Kurdish opposition members in the final constitution document outlining a transition plan for Syria.

The fiercely divided SNC pulled the document together at the last minute under pressure to unite from the “Friends of Syria” group.

The Friends group – which includes Turkey, the United States, the United Kingdom, France and Gulf states – recognized the SNC as “a legitimate representative of the Syrian people,” falling well short of the recognition as the legal government in exile they had hoped for after the first Friends of Syria meeting in Tunis in February.

“Our goal was to unify with the opposition and come up with a patriotic agreement that makes an umbrella for the whole opposition, but unfortunately the Turkish sponsor was very sensitive toward the Kurdish issue,” Yousef told The Daily Star. “We accuse the Turkish government of putting pressure on the council.”

Yousef said that negotiations ahead of the conference had outlined recognition of the Kurds, but claimed that those points had been removed in the final covenant.

Read Full Article Here

‘US to accept civilian nuke program in Iran’

President Obama signals Iran that US would endorse nuclear program if Ayatollah Ali Khamenei backs up claim that Islamic Republic won’t purse atom bomb, US paper reports

Yitzhak Benhorin

WASHINGTON – US President Barack Obama

has signaled Tehran that the Washington would accept an civilian nuclear program in Iran if Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei can back up his recent claim that his nation “will never pursue nuclear weapons,” the Washington Post reported Friday.

According to the report, the verbal message was sent through Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who met with Khamenei last week. A few days prior to leaving for the trip, Erdogan held a two-hour meeting with Obama on the sidelines of the nuclear security summit in Seoul, in which they discussed what the Turkish leader would tell Khamenei about the nuclear issue.

Read Full Article Here

************************************************************************************************

Articles of Interest

Our Men in Iran?

Posted by Seymour M. Hersh

From the air, the terrain of the Department of Energy’s Nevada National Security Site, with its arid high plains and remote mountain peaks, has the look of northwest Iran. The site, some sixty-five miles northwest of Las Vegas, was once used for nuclear testing, and now includes a counterintelligence training facility and a private airport capable of handling Boeing 737 aircraft. It’s a restricted area, and inhospitable—in certain sections, the curious are warned that the site’s security personnel are authorized to use deadly force, if necessary, against intruders.

It was here that the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) conducted training, beginning in 2005, for members of the Mujahideen-e-Khalq, a dissident Iranian opposition group known in the West as the M.E.K. The M.E.K. had its beginnings as a Marxist-Islamist student-led group and, in the nineteen-seventies, it was linked to the assassination of six American citizens. It was initially part of the broad-based revolution that led to the 1979 overthrow of the Shah of Iran. But, within a few years, the group was waging a bloody internal war with the ruling clerics, and, in 1997, it was listed as a foreign terrorist organization by the State Department. In 2002, the M.E.K. earned some international credibility by publicly revealing—accurately—that Iran had begun enriching uranium at a secret underground location. Mohamed ElBaradei, who at the time was the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations’ nuclear monitoring agency, told me later that he had been informed that the information was supplied by the Mossad. The M.E.K.’s ties with Western intelligence deepened after the fall of the Iraqi regime in 2003, and JSOC began operating inside Iran in an effort to substantiate the Bush Administration’s fears that Iran was building the bomb at one or more secret underground locations. Funds were covertly passed to a number of dissident organizations, for intelligence collection and, ultimately, for anti-regime terrorist activities. Directly, or indirectly, the M.E.K. ended up with resources like arms and intelligence. Some American-supported covert operations continue in Iran today, according to past and present intelligence officials and military consultants.

Read Full Article Here

Leaked Video Shows US Contractors Randomly Killing Civilians

Employees of the US military contracting group Academi (formerly Xe, Blackwater USA and Blackwater Worldwide) are seen in new leaked video shooting their machine guns at random while driving through the streets of Baghdad, crashing into other cars and even running over a pedestrian without hesitation.

Academi received a $250 million contract by the Obama administration to provide military services in Afghanistan.

Read Full Article Here

More  Videos  Here

Guilty Of Telling The Truth

20-Year Veteran to Face Jail Time for Act of Civil Disobedience

Retired Naval Commander Leah Bolger will appear in court Thursday, April 12, 2012 on charges stemming from her arrest on October 26th, 2011. Bolger, who is a peace activist and the President of Veterans For Peace, interrupted a public hearing of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, commonly known as the Super Committee.

Read Full Article Here

[In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit, for research and/or educational purposes. This constitutes ‘FAIR USE’ of any such copyrighted material.]

Politics and legislation

Obama Admin Cites ‘Int’l Permission,’ Not Congress, As ‘Legal Basis’ For Action In Syria

Uploaded by SenatorSessions on Mar 7, 2012

WASHINGTON, March 7—Under question from Sen. Sessions at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing today, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey indicated that “international permission,” rather than Congressional approval, provided a ‘legal basis’ for military action by the United States.

FBI director: Have to check whether targeted killing rule is outside US only

FBI Director Robert Mueller on Wednesday said he would have to go back and check with the Department of Justice whether Attorney General Eric Holder’s “three criteria” for the targeted killing of Americans also applied to Americans inside the U.S.

Pressed by House lawmakers about a recent speech in which Holder described the legal justification for assassination, Mueller, who was attending a hearing on his agency’s budget, did not say without qualification that the three criteria could not be applied inside the U.S.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/03/07/mueller-have-to-check-with-holder-whether-targeted-killing-rule-is-outside-us/#ixzz1ofCPdMO8

Second House panel clears bill to repeal Medicare board

A second House committee agreed by voice vote Thursday to repeal a key cost-cutting board in President Obama’s healthcare law.

The Ways and Means Committee voted to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), a 15-member panel tasked with cutting Medicare payments. The Energy and Commerce Committee passed the same repeal bill earlier this week.

http://thehill.com/blogs/healthwatch/health-reform-implementation/214935-ways-and-means-clears-bill-to-ax-health-laws-cost-cutting-board

Judge Bars Voter ID in Wisconsin
Sandra Khalifa, News Analysis:

“Voter ID laws have been sweeping the country state by state in the last year, deliberately barring many progressive-voting citizens from access to the polls. Although it’s less likely to commit voter fraud than be struck by lightning, conservatives in state government have been using voter fraud as an excuse to disfranchise people without specific photo identification. The people affected range from students, seniors, low-income communities, the disabled, transgender individuals, and communities of color.”

http://www.nationofchange.org/judge-bars-voter-id-wisconsin-1331218357

Student Loan Forgiveness Act Introduced in Congress
Sandra Khalifa, Video Report:

“Yesterday Representative Hansen Clarke (D-MI) released HR4170, the Student Loan Forgiveness Act. The bill aims to stimulate the economy and protect those struggling with their student loan payments. Clark announced, ‘It’s time for Congress to stand for the rights of student loan borrowers. It’s time to forgive these student loan debts.’ The bill provides that if a student loan borrower makes payments equal to 10% of their discretionary income for a period of 10 yrs, the balance of their federal student loan debt will be forgiven.”

http://www.nationofchange.org/student-loan-forgiveness-act-introduced-congress-1331318490

China to elect lawmakers on equal ratio of rural, urban representation

BEIJING, March 8 (Xinhua) — China will elect deputies to its top legislature next year based on the same population ratio in rural and urban areas, if a draft decision on lawmaker election tabled for deliberation on Thursday is approved.

For the first time, the quota of 2,000 deputies to the 12th National People’s Congress (NPC) will be given to urban and rural residents based on the same population ratio.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2012-03/08/c_131454226.htm

Economy

Huge Spike in Repeat Foreclosures

Thousands of foreclosures that were stuck in process due to delays over the so-called “Robo-signing” paperwork scandal are working their way through a revamped banking system and heading toward final bank repossession.

Foreclosure starts surged 28 percent in January from December, according to a new report from Lender Processing Services. More than 230,000 loans began the foreclosure process in January.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/46641784

Claims for jobless aid up; low 4-week average also rise

WASHINGTON (AP) – Slightly more people applied for U.S. unemployment benefits last week. But the overall level stayed low enough to suggest the job market is strengthening.
The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly applications increased by 8,000 to a seasonally adjusted 362,000.

The four-week average, which smooths week-to-week fluctuations, remained at roughly 355,000. That’s essentially unchanged from last week’s level, which was the lowest in four years.

http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/story/2012-03-08/unemployment-benefits-claims-0303/53410434/1

Consumer borrowing nearly at pre-recession levels

WASHINGTON – Americans stepped up borrowing in January to buy more cars and attend school.

Consumer borrowing rose by $17.8 billion in January, the Federal Reserve said Wednesday. That followed similar gains in December and November.

The gains for those three months were the largest in a decade and helped consumer borrowing climb to a seasonally adjusted $2.5 trillion. That nearly matches the pre-recession borrowing level.

http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/story/2012-03-07/january-consumer-borrowing/53401334/1

Why Job Growth Might Mean High Unemployment

Payroll processing firm ADP reported Wednesday that private employment grew by 216,000 last month, a bump of 43,000 jobs over January’s figure. ADP’s numbers suggest improvement in even the economy’s weakest areas: construction has sustained five consecutive months of job growth, and there have also been seven consecutive months of growth in financial services. Both of those industries sustained heavy job losses as a result of the housing and financial crises. Manufacturing, which had seen more than a decade of decline before the recession, also added 21,000 jobs.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/why-job-growth-might-mean-160233717.html;_ylt=An.BIhHr4C91JO.0FOl4_zyiuYdG;_ylu=X3oDMTRiY2hwMm9sBG1pdANGUCBDb21tZW50YXJ5IGFuZCBBbmFseXNpcwRwa2cDNDI5OGI5NTEtZTZjZi0zMzViLTg4MWQtYjY4YjRmNDU4NTA4BHBvcwM0BHNlYwNNZWRpYVNlY3Rpb25MaXN0BHZlcgM3MTFjYjFiMC02ODZmLTExZTEtYWQzZC0yZWIzMTlmNDQ0NTc-;_ylg=X3oDMTFvdnRqYzJoBGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDBHBzdGNhdANob21lBHB0A3NlY3Rpb25zBHRlc3QD;_ylv=3

Switzerland Wants Its Gold Back From The New York Fed

Earlier today, we reported that Germans are increasingly concerned that their gold, at over 3,400 tons a majority of which is likely stored in the vault 80 feet below street level of 33 Liberty (recently purchased by the Fed with freshly printed money at far higher than prevailing commercial real estate rates for the Downtown NY area), may be in jeopardy,and will likely soon formally inquire just how much of said gold is really held by the Fed. As it turns out, Germany is not alone: as part of the “Rettet Unser Schweizer Gold”, or the “Gold Initiative”: A Swiss Initiative to Secure the Swiss National Bank’s Gold Reserves initiative, launched recently by four members of the Swiss parliament, the Swiss people should have a right to vote on 3 simple things: i) keeping the Swiss gold physically in Switzerland; ii) forbidding the SNB from selling any more of its gold reserves, and iii) the SNB has to hold at least 20% of its assets in gold.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/switzerland-wants-its-gold-back-new-york-fed

Critical Mass: The Mispricing of Derivatives Risk & How the Financial World Ends

CURATOR: JOHN ROLLS. Jim Sinclair does a good job of explaining the difference between the notional and real value of derivatives, and how that real value comes to bear on the financial system in the event of a default. You can read this…

http://beforeitsnews.com/story/1870/061/NL/

Obama touts jobs report as evidence of manufacturing success

By Jonathan Easley

President Obama tied Friday’s positive jobs report to his administration’s success in rebuilding the manufacturing industry during a visit to a Rolls-Royce plant in Virginia.

“Manufacturing is adding jobs for the first time since the 1990s,” the president said. “We just had another good month last month in terms of adding manufacturing jobs, and this facility is part of the evidence of what’s going on.”

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/215235-obama-touts-jobs-report-as-evidence-of-his-manufacturing-agenda

IT’S OFFICIAL: ISDA TRIGGERS GREEK CREDIT EVENT IN UNANIMOUS DECISION

It’s for real this time.

The International Swaps and Derivatives Association determined today that Greece’s bond swap has triggered a credit event.

That will lead to payouts of credit default swaps—essentially, insurance contracts on holdings of Greek bonds under Greek law—that investors purchased to hedge against the risk of holding Greek sovereign debt.

http://www.businessinsider.com/its-official-isda-triggers-greek-cds-2012-3#ixzz1ogPxivz7

Greek Debt Swap Sees 95.7% Participation With Clauses

March 9 (Bloomberg) — The Greek government said it reached its target in the biggest sovereign restructuring in history, with a 95.7 percent participation rate among investors after it received approval to activate collective action clauses.

Bondholders tendered 152 billion euros of Greek-law bonds, or 85.8 percent, after the government offered to swap their holdings for new securities under the debt exchange. Twenty billion euros of foreign-law bonds were also tendered, according to an emailed statement from the Greek Finance Ministry.

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2012/03/08/bloomberg_articlesM0LT3D6S972801-M0LV0.DTL#ixzz1ogRa9zJh

Wars and Rumors of War

Libya’s Big-Oil PM Rolls Over for Western Masters

Libya’s Prime Minister, and British Petroleum, Total, and Shell-funded Petroleum Institute chairman Abdurrahim el-Keib, flatly denied allegations by Russian UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin that Libya was directly funding, training, and arming militants in Syria. El-Keib’s denial stands in direct contradiction of reports like the London Telegraph’s “Leading Libyan Islamist met Syrian Army Opposition Group,” where it was revealed that “the new Libyan authorities had offered money and weapons to the growing insurgency against Bashar al-Assad.”

http://www.blacklistednews.com/Libya%27s_Big-Oil_PM_Rolls_Over_for_Western_Masters/18359/0/38/38/Y/M.html

62 dead in Syria as diplomatic efforts continue

(CNN) — At least 62 people were killed Thursday in Syria as former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan cautioned against outside military intervention, saying it could worsen an already precarious situation.

But, Annan told the Arab League summit in Cairo, “the violence and killings must stop immediately.”

Annan, the joint special envoy to Syria for the United Nations and the Arab League, began a visit to the region in Cairo on Wednesday. The U.N. said he will visit Damascus on Saturday “to seek an urgent end to all violence and human rights violations and to initiate efforts to promote a peaceful solution.”

http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/08/world/meast/syria-unrest/index.html?eref=igoogledmn_topstories

US State Department Hands Terror-Cult US Base in Iraq

In an unbelievable act of high treason and overt criminality, the US State Department, headed by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has finalized arrangements to move the US State Department-listed foreign terror organization, Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization (MEK), into the former US military base “Camp Liberty’ in Iraq.

http://www.blacklistednews.com/US_State_Department_Hands_Terror-Cult_US_Base_in_Iraq/18358/0/38/38/Y/M.html

US offered Israel advanced weaponry in exchange for delaying Iran attack: report

WASHINGTON — The US offered to give Israel advanced weaponry — including bunker-busting bombs and refueling planes — in exchange for Israel’s agreement not to attack Iranian nuclear sites, Israeli newspaper Maariv reported Thursday.

President Obama reportedly made the offer during Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to Washington this week.

Under the proposed deal, Israel would not attack Iran until 2013, after US elections in November this year. The newspaper cited unnamed Western diplomatic and intelligence sources.

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/international/attack_offered_israel_advanced_weaponry_vJzadL8Qw5XoQ7akSRO9yK

Netanyahu: Strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities possible within months

An attack on Iran could take place within a matter of months, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a series of television interviews on Thursday. “We’re not standing with a stopwatch in hand,” he said. “It’s not a matter of days or weeks, but also not of years. The result must be removal of the threat of nuclear weapons in Iran’s hands.” Netanyahu gave separate interviews to all three Israeli television stations, the first he has given since his return from Washington earlier this week.

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/netanyahu-strike-on-iran-s-nuclear-facilities-possible-within-months-1.417417

Israel asks U.S. for arms that could aid Iran strike

Israel has asked the United States for advanced “bunker-buster” bombs and refueling planes that could improve its ability to attack Iran’s underground nuclear sites, an Israeli official said on Thursday. “Such a request was made” around the time of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to Washington this week, the official said, confirming media reports. But the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity given the sensitivity of the issue, played down as “unrealistic” Israeli reports that the United States would condition supplying the hardware on Israel promising not to attack Iran this year.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/46673712/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/#.T1qM67QycdQ

Panetta: U.S. Has Potential Military Plans for Iran

The Pentagon is preparing an array of military options for striking Iran if hard-hitting diplomatic and economic sanctions fail to persuade Tehran to drop its nuclear ambitions, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told National Journal in an interview on Thursday. Panetta said such planning had been under way “for a long time,” a reflection of the Obama administration’s mounting concern over Iran’s [alleged] continued progress towards a nuclear weapon. Panetta said in the interview that a unilateral Israeli strike against Iran would be less effective than one conducted by the U.S., which has a significantly larger air force and an array of advanced weapons more powerful than any possessed by Israel.

http://www.nationaljournal.com/nationalsecurity/panetta-u-s-has-potential-military-plans-for-iran-20120308

Obama asks Pentagon for military plans on Syria: Gen. Dempsey

Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey says President Barack Obama has requested from the Pentagon military options against the Syrian government. According to a Wednesday report by The New York Times, Dempsey declared in a US Senate committee hearing in Washington that the Department of Defense was preparing military alternatives with regards to the existing situation in Syria for Obama’s review. The top American military chief made the remarks during a Wednesday hearing of US Senate’s Armed Services Committee. Dempsey added that potential measures considered by the American military ranged from “aerial surveillance of the Syrian military, the establishment of a no-fly zone, naval monitoring and humanitarian [sic] airlifts.”

http://presstv.com/detail/230546.html

CNN attempts to counter scandal over “Syria Danny” propaganda

Anderson Cooper attempted, and miserably failed, to mitigate the damage from the discovery that one of the poster boys for foreign intervention in Syria was manufacturing complete propaganda for Western consumption.

The video below is the original video exposing “Danny” as a vicious propagandist actively working against the interests of the Syrian people.

This is just more exploitation of the good intentions of people around the world for nefarious ends.

http://EndtheLie.com/2012/03/07/cnn-attempts-to-counter-scandal-over-syria-danny-propaganda/#ixzz1ofxXGwnU

Deal or No Deal? U.S. Denies Obama-Netanyahu ‘Package Deal’

White House denies the reports that Obama offered Netanyahu missiles if Israel agreed not to attack Iran during 2012.

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/153582#.T1rSx7QyegZ

Environmental

Fukushima Disaster Anniversary Finds U.S. Nuclear Regulation Debate Still Raging
Corbin Hiar, News Report:

“One year ago on Sunday, an earthquake off the coast of Japan and the resulting tsunami triggered a month-long partial meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station. In the days leading up to the anniversary of the crisis, advocates and opponents of nuclear power are squaring off in a fight over the lessons U.S. regulators should learn from the disaster.”

http://www.nationofchange.org/fukushima-disaster-anniversary-finds-us-nuclear-regulation-debate-still-raging-1331219767

Misc

Daniel Ellsberg Arrested Protesting the ‘American Nuclear Doomsday Machine’
Jane Ayers, News Analysis:

“In the wee hours of Saturday, February 25th, nuclear expert (and Pentagon Papers whistleblower) Daniel Ellsberg, along with David Krieger, President of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation (NAPF), Cindy Sheehan, Fr. Louis Vitale, four members of CodePink, and six other concerned citizens, were all arrested for trespassing on military property while conducting an act of civil disobedience at the Vandenberg Air Force Base in Lompoc, California.”

http://www.nationofchange.org/daniel-ellsberg-arrested-protesting-american-nuclear-doomsday-machine-1331224456

US assassination drone crashes in Somalia’s Hobyo seaport

Another US assassination drone has crashed in Mudug region near Somalia’s seaport city of Hobyo, Press TV reports. A Somali official speaking on condition of anonymity said that the US spy drone had flown from the nearby USS Taylor warship. Recently, the US is using a new kind of drone, called a kamikaze drone, in Somalia. It functions both as a missile and an intelligence-gathering reconnaissance aircraft.

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/230501.html

Afghanistan, U.S. to sign prison transfer deal: officials –Agreement will be the framework for U.S. involvement in Afghanistan beyond 2014

The United States and Afghanistan are expected to sign a deal on the transfer of U.S.-run detention centers to Afghan authorities on Friday, two Afghan officials said, improving the prospects of a strategic partnership allowing long-term U.S. involvement in the country. The Foreign Ministry later said Afghan Defense Minister Gen. Abdul Rahim Wardak and Gen. John Allen, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, would sign an MOU. The Strategic Partnership Agreement, which Washington and Kabul have been discussing for over a year, will be the framework for U.S. involvement in Afghanistan beyond 2014, when the last foreign combat troops are due to leave Afghanistan.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/03/09/us-afghanistan-usa-prisoners-idUSBRE8280BU20120309

U.S. firm linked to civilian deaths hired to train Canadian soldiers –Military has had relationship with Blackwater/Xe for years – documents

An American mercenary firm whose employees have been implicated in the killing of civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan was paid nearly $2.4 million to train Canadian soldiers last year. Documents tabled in the House of Commons show Xe Services, formerly known as Blackwater, was providing select troops specialized training in precision shooting and defensive driving at the company’s North Carolina facilities. Other soldiers were trained in bodyguard and close-quarter combat skills.

http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/firm+linked+civilian+deaths+hired+train+Canadian+soldiers/6266933/story.html

Navy Submariner( MoD Official) Accused Of Leaking Secrets

A Ministry of Defence official is due to appear in court today charged with breaching the Official Secrets Act, Scotland Yard has said. Edward Devenney, 29, is accused of communicating information which could be deemed to be useful to an enemy of the state. He was arrested by officers in Plymouth on Tuesday morning before being charged last night, the Metropolitan Police said. A Met spokesman said a number of searches had been completed in connection with the arrest.

http://news.sky.com/home/uk-news/article/16184600

Obama to Simulate Cyber Attack on New York Power to Lobby Senate

The Obama regime will simulate a cyber attack crippling New York City’s electric supply during a summer heat wave to drum up support for cybersecurity legislation. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, National Security Agency and Justice Department are among agencies in Washington involved today in a Senate briefing on the New York scenario, said Vincent Morris, a spokesman for Senator Jay Rockefeller, a West Virginia Democrat. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and John Brennan, the White House counterterrorism adviser, are taking part.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-07/at-t-joins-comcast-favoring-incentives-over-cybersecurity-rules.html

White Powder Mailed to New England Schools, Including 3 In Connecticut

FBI investigating incidents 08 Mar 2012 Schools throughout New England, including three in Connecticut, have been targeted by someone mailing envelopes containing white powder. The envelopes arrived at John F. Kennedy Middle School in Enfield on Monday, and at Anna Reynolds School in Newington and Island Avenue School in Madison on Wednesday. In each case, the envelopes disrupted the school day and prompted responses by police and firefighters.

http://www.courant.com/community/newington/hc-madison-school-powder-0308-20120307,0,7211112.story

Cyber Space

LulzSec’s Sabu: ‘ask me about the CIA’

When the Guardian spoke to the hacker last year, he was keen to discuss claims he worked for the authorities By James Ball

[Sabu] asked me to join him in an off-the-record internet chat – a conversation that happened seven weeks after Sabu, now unmasked as Hector Xavier Monsegur, had already been picked up by the FBI. Given the latest revelations about Sabu’s activities, that he worked as an informer from after his arrest on 7 June until just a few days ago, I think it is appropriate to publish a few extracts from our conversation. Sabu – and we cannot even be sure that our correspondent was the real Monsegur and not a US agent – was not representing himself accurately to the newspaper. If anything, he was testing the Guardian out, openly flirting with the notion that he worked for the CIA – and then inviting me to knock him down.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/mar/07/lulzsec-sabu-informer

Elite hacker arrested in NY cooperated from Day 1

In his Twitter postings, the elite computer hacker known as “Sabu” urged followers to resist the U.S. government and its agents. But court papers made public Thursday reveal that Hector Xavier Monsegur put up no such fight when FBI agents first knocked on his door on June 7. From almost that first moment, he began talking, naming names and helping investigators pick apart the international community of Internet saboteurs [heroes]. He was arrested at 10:15 p.m. By the next day, federal prosecutors had told a judge that Monsegur had given them detailed information on other hackers suspected of breaking into the computer systems at several big corporations.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5j0Mbvu9DeKoYrZTzliPdqz9HbCZg

Irish police free student accused of breaking into top cybercop’s email, US-UK security call –FBI affidavits

Student is Internet infiltrator responsible for recording and posting online Jan. 17 trans-Atlantic conference call between American and British anti-hacking detectives 07 Mar 2012 An Irish computer hacker accused of breaking into the email account of Ireland’s top cybersecurity cop, then using its contents to eavesdrop on American and British anti-hacking detectives, was released without charges Wednesday. Irish police said they were preparing a new evidence file for state prosecutors to use against Donncha O Cearbhaill. He’s been arrested and released once before over alleged hacking attacks in Ireland last year.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/hackers-hit-spanish-firm-panda-security-claiming-revenge-for-fbi-arrests/2012/03/07/gIQA415hwR_story.html

Monsanto

Monsanto’s Blatant Corruption and Disregard for Health (video)

CONTRIBUTOR: ACTIVISTPOST. It is well known that Monsanto’s GMO crops provide a very real threat to both public health and the environment as a whole, but the depth of Monsanto’s corruption is often a less covered topic. It has been…

It is well known that Monsanto’s GMO crops provide a very real threat to both public health and the environment as a whole, but the depth of Monsanto’s corruption is often a less covered topic. It has been revealed by WikiLeaks that Monsanto not only has key figureheads stationed in powerful government positions inside the United States, but also has many — if not all — U.S. diplomats on their payroll.

Monsanto’s Corruption Exposed (2/4)

Monsanto’s Corruption Exposed (3/4)

Monsanto’s Corruption Exposed (4/4)