Prone to Violence
FROM THE French Revolution to contemporary Iraq, the beginning phase of democratization in unsettled circumstances has often spurred a rise in militant nationalism. Democracy means rule by the people, but when territorial control and popular loyalties are in flux, a prior question has to be settled: Which people will form the nation? Nationalist politicians vie for popular support to answer that question in a way that suits their purposes. When groups are at loggerheads and the rules guiding domestic politics are unclear, the answer is more often based on a test of force and political manipulation than on democratic procedures.
The Torture Question tonight on PBS by far, television's most in-depth look at how the controversial interrogation policy evolved after a major power struggle within the Bush administration.
(via Rocky Mountain News)
The problem, of course, is that it's often the things we'd rather not think about that we most need to hear, especially when those things are actions taken in all of our names with an eye toward making us safer. Ellen Gray
Watch a preview here
Answering the "Glass Mecca" Strategy.
Regarding the comments by Rep. Tom Tancredo
offering the nuclear terrorist attack response of "nuking Mecca.”
Major Incident on London Underground
reported. Anyone have any further information?
While the proverbial road to hell is paved with good intentions, the internal government memos collected in this publication demonstrate that the path to the purgatory that is Guantanamo Bay, or Abu Ghraib, has been paved with decidedly bad intentions. The policies that resulted in rampant abuse of detainees first in Afghanistan, then at Guantanamo Bay, and later in Iraq, were product of three pernicious purposes designed to facilitate the unilateral and unfettered detention, interrogation, abuse, judgment, and punishment of prisoners: (1) the desire to place the detainees beyond the reach of any court or law; (2) the desire to abrogate the Geneva Convention with respect to the treatment of persons seized in the context of armed hostilities; and (3) the desire to absolve those implementing the policies of any liability for war crimes under U.S. and international law.
Regarding the Torture Papers
, which detail Torture's Paper Trail
, and, then there's Hungry for Air
: Learning The Language Of Torture, and, of course, there's ( more inside)
In a time when terrorism is a major political platform and given that this event has had a bigger death toll than any other major terror activity since September 11, why is this not bigger news?
Air Marshals Say Passenger Overreacted. "The source said the air marshals on the flight were partially concerned (Annie) Jacobsen’s actions could have been an effort by terrorists or attackers to create a disturbance on the plane to force the agents to identify themselves."
(Second story down, via atrios
DOJ Asked FBI Translator To Change Pre 9-11 Intercepts
--- FBI translator Sibel Edmonds, was offered a substantial raise and a full time job in order to not go public that she had been asked by the Department of Justice (DOJ) to retranslate and adjust the translations of [terrorist] subject intercepts that had been received before September 11, 2001 by the FBI and CIA.
"My translations of the pre 9-11 intercepts included [terrorist] money laundering, detailed and date specific information enough to alert the American people, and other issues dating back to 1999 which I won't go into right now."
Incredibly, Edmonds said "The senate Judiciary Committee, and the 911 Commission have heard me testify for lengthy periods of time time (3 hours) about very specific plots, dates, airplanes used as weopons, and specific idividuals and activities."
Is this true? and OMFG
Al-Qaeda behind Madrid massacre?
One piece of evidence I've only seen mentioned in Norway is a document a terrorist research group at the Norwegian Defense Research Establishment found on an Islamist website. The document surveys strategies for forcing the coalition out of Iraq. It mentions Spain as a convenient target, and the election this week as a convenient time to carry it out
"fleet owners of a tanker companies" = the new evil doers?
what kind of questions do yesterday's discovery of ricin in the capitol
, and the january 9th article ask about our "war on terror"? [ initial link via TPM ]
. Malvo case: defendant's trial exhibits
Federal investigators have documented 1,300 cases of lost, stolen or abandoned radioactive material inside the United States over the past five years and have concluded there is a significant risk that terrorists could cobble enough together for a dirty bomb. (warning - Salon link)
Visit Madison, Indiana. Why? We're not New York City!
Sure you can be opportunistic about selling gas masks
if you're an internet entrepreneur, but what if you're a small town in Indiana and you want to cash in on fear of terrorism. Why, tout what you don't have, of course.
"A safe place to visit...When you visit Madison you will discover that we have no tall buildings to fear, no nuclear power plants, airports or anything anyone would want to blow up."
Trading on the Future of Terror [LA Times] The war on terrorism has come to this: The Pentagon is setting up a commodity-style market to use real investors — putting down real money — to help its generals predict terrorist attacks, coups d'etat and other turmoil in the Middle East.
You can sign
up here to bet on suicide bombings.
He can click on a bank in Manhattan and see who has communication lines running into it and where. He can zoom in on Baltimore and find the choke point for trucking warehouses. He can drill into a cable trench between Kansas and Colorado and determine how to create the most havoc with a hedge clipper. Using mathematical formulas, he probes for critical links, trying to answer the question: "If I were Osama bin Laden, where would I want to attack?"
In the background, he plays the Beastie Boys.
the administration is "underestimating the enemy."
It has failed to address the root causes of terror, he said. "The difficult, long-term issues both at home and abroad have been avoided, neglected or shortchanged and generally underfunded."
Would we prefer to have this man providing intelligence information to our president more than a woman who has an oil tanker named after her
Secret Police strike again
. What country is this, again?
After her experience in the weeks before Sept. 11, she said, "I promised myself that in the future I always would try."
Time magazine person of the year - Coleen Rowley warns of more attacks. Is she doing the right thing or out of line by going public with warning?
Know what time it is, Kidz? It's U.S. Department of Justice Time!
On today's show, we'll learn why Hacking is REAL BAD,
and give you a chance to find out if you are a good cybercitizen
. Next, we'll meet Axel, the talking drug dog,
and his friends the Bomb Dog Bunch!
Then, we'll check in on the ATF, for some cool science fair ideas
And finally, just for you kids with crooks or international terrorists for parents, here's a nifty PDF coloring book
(Native American version
Standing With Osama? "Some of the more bilious right-wing pundits... have taken to describing those who oppose the invasion as 'siding with Saddam.' But if such sleazy rhetoric is allowable, then maybe we should say that those like our President, who seem to have ignored Osama’s decrees, or like Powell, who are hawking a Saddam/Al Qaeda connection based on overblown evidence, are standing with Osama."
Is this accusation fair? If so, is it productive? I doubt it, but I'm not certain. Rohan Gunaratna, the author of "Inside Al Qaeda,"
warns that an invasion of Iraq would undermine the international campaign against Al Qaeda
and give terrorist groups a new lease on life. Oh well, at least it's funny
. [Via Cursor
.] [More inside.]
"I did not escape from you
but I did what I was supposed to do and you should be very proud of me." The love life of 9/11 hijacker Ziad Jarrah.
``We face a hate-filled, remorseless enemy that takes many forms, has many places to hide and is often invisible
From UPI: Israel is embarking upon a more aggressive approach to the war on terror that will include staging targeted killings in the United States and other friendly countries, former Israeli intelligence officials told United Press International.
I am so NOT trolling. I am simply curious to see what MeFi users have to say about this interesting news item.
sick of rat beach? join al queda
it does'nt get a lot better than this - is this guy the next john walker lindh ?
Movie piracy 'like terrorism'
The drive to protect movie copyright needed to be "as concentrated an international event as the war on terrorism", according to Star Wars producer Rick McCallum.
Russian gas clues point to cocktail.
Events show that the Russians were organized to respond to various terrorist eventualities, but not prepared well enough to take into consideration the lateral side effects. I wonder how this scenerio would have played in the US?
Russian Forces Set Hostages Free.
Deputy Interior Minister Vladimir Vasilyev said about three dozen of the estimated 50 hostage-takers had been killed and Federal Security Service director Nikolai Patrushev said, contrary to earlier reports, that none of the gunmen had escaped. Terrorism loses again.
They want to kill us all
Forget the ‘root causes’, says Mark Steyn. The massacre in Bali was part of the continuing Islamofascist war against the West, and those who ignore it are sleepwalking to national suicide
I wait now--loaded with my meds--for the Left to call for more understanding, help for the poverty stricken, and understanding. Incidentally, if you turn to http://www.debka.com/ today, you will see that they claim Bin Laden alive and well in Saudi Arabia!
Nuke Not Nuke Not News?
*I do not endorse the source
* However, one should consider the implications if this
time it's not
a fantasy. Are nuclear weapons now a poor-man's weapon? Is it time to call James Bond?
Bush Doubted on 9/11 Panel Angry lawmakers accused the White House yesterday of secretly trying to derail creation of an independent commission to investigate the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks while professing to support the idea. The White House responded by renewing its pledge of support for the proposal and suggesting an agreement was near.
Falwell calls THE Mohammed a terrorist.
But it's not the first time he's offered this sick, and truly twisted opinion. On his site we find this gem
. How long will it take for his people to give up, and step back to let the snipers have a better shot?
Ship searched for nuclear material
after it was diverted from New York harbor, reports MS-NBC. Apparently a Department of Energy Nuclear Emergency Search Team (NEST) was involved. Initial report states that elevated gamma and neutron emissions were detected.
Aside from this report--which is unconfirmed--how likely is such an attack? How do we deal with thousands of container ships, each holding hundreds of anonymous containers? This kind of attack scares me much more than airplanes dropping out of the sky.
Hamas is losing. Good news from the Mideast
To all those who insist terror wars can't be won, some evidence you are pessimists.
Watch those Waterway in Florida
says the U.S. Coast Guard. Possible terrorist threats include drawing or taking photographs of the shore, being near the shore for a long time, and under no circumstances would any law abiding citizen be doing something as daring and thoroughly terrorist-like as renting a boat
In the midst of all the talk of possible terrorist deployments of Weapons of Mass-Destruction, this
seems like a somewhat dramatic, if effective, approach to pre-empting the threat of blackmarket nuclear proliferation. The co-operative approach adopted by the U.S and Russia - and presumably the Yugoslav Government itself - also seems encouraging.
Should this 'surprise-attack' approach now be used to negate the threat posed as nuclear facilities are decommissioned worldwide??
All Qaeda's Fantasy Ideology
Why did Bin Laden's homies do what they did on September 11? Why did Lindh (as per the Steve Earle thread below) do what he did? Here is a cogent answer.
How to make money off terrorism.
This outfit will e-mail you "near real-time notices about terrorism related news and events as a free public service" and expects 50,000 to 100,000 subscribers. According to their news-release page,
"when subscribership reaches significant levels the email alerts will be an effective advertising medium for in-house efforts as well as outside advertisers." As in, for example, "Alert: there has been a biological warfare attack. This message sponsored by Clearasil Anti-Bacterial Soap."
The president of a counterterrorism consulting firm has been charged with possessing 2,352 unregistered small military missiles.
Investigators also found 4,000 pounds of explosives at High Energy Access Tools (HEAT)
, an anti-terrorism and police training company that was conducting classes for students from the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. More....
Finally somebody's saying it out loud.
A "top Pentagon advisory board" says the real enemy in the War on terrorism is...drum roll, please....Saudi Arabia
Bin Laden alive and planning attacks...
I don't think so! Bush should publicly issue a direct challenge to Bin Laden. Just go on every TV and proclaim him dead! "We killed him." Period. If Bin Laden is still alive he would have to respond or be considered a joke.
"Just don't tell my wife"
says a guy who shot at a helicopter when it landed in a vacant lot across from his house to pick up a passenger. He was sure they were terrorists. What happened to just calling the police and reporting the helicopter's number?
Impossible? Two days ago I wrote in my blog
that a space colony is a stupid idea. I don't think this project can do much against the growing threat of terrorism
. I don't like one thing is this space colony: living really near a nuclear reactor with nowere to escape should something go wrong.
Buffy the Terrorism Slayer
(PDF link) The Center For Strategic & International Studies
, which appears to be, like, a bunch of grown-up ex-senators
and accused war criminals
and former top spooks
, released this white paper late last September.
Any structured intellectual approach to describing this situation and planning for it is so uncertain that a valid structure can only be developed as an exercise in complexity or "chaos" theory. I, however, would like you to think about the biological threat in more mundane terms. I am going to suggest that you think about biological warfare in terms of a TV show called "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," that you think about the world of biological weapons in terms of the "Buffy Paradigm," and that you think about many of the problems in the proposed solutions as part of the "Buffy Syndrome."
I am one vindicated overgrown Buffy fan. (Via Need To Know
Is the FBI dragging
it's feet in the anthrax investigation? It appears they have reason to do so. Dr. Barbara Rosenberg presents a compelling argument that the likely homegrown terrorist is known but revealing his identity could be embarrassing to the government.