Monday, August 31, 2009

In the News: Aug-31

Wordle: In the News: Aug-31

White House: Cheney wrong on interrogations policy - 31 Aug 2009 at 2:12pm - WASHINGTON -- The White House says former Vice President Dick Cheney has his facts wrong on the Obama administration's policies for terror detainee interrogations.
That may not be the only thing he's wrong about.

Court documents name detainees sent to Portugal - 31 Aug 2009 at 12:49pm - The two Guantanamo detainees sent to Portugal last week were a Syrian man whose father is still held at the prison camps and a former Syrian Army recruit once accused of joining forces with Afghanistan's Taliban militia, according to court documents made public Monday.

US officials cancel contract to profile reporters - 31 Aug 2009 at 10:13am - WASHINGTON -- U.S. military authorities in Afghanistan have terminated a contract with a public affairs company that was producing background profiles of reporters covering a war that's becoming increasingly unpopular with the American public.

U.S. commander: Afghan strategy needs change - 31 Aug 2009 at 8:53am - KABUL (Reuters) - The 8-year-old war in Afghanistan can still be won, but only with a revised strategy, the commander of U.S. and NATO forces said on Monday, announcing the conclusion of a long-awaited review that could see him seek more troops.

Blackwater tapped foreigners on secret CIA program - 31 Aug 2009 at 6:47am - WASHINGTON -- When the CIA revived a plan to kill or capture terrorists in 2004, the agency turned to the well-connected security company then known as Blackwater USA.

Thought for the day:
Democracy is the bludgeoning of the people, by the people, for the people. -Oscar Wilde (1854 - 1900)

Friday, August 28, 2009

In the News: Aug-28

Wordle: In the News: Aug-28

Taliban growth in northern Afghanistan threatens to expand war - 28 Aug 2009 at 2:50pm - BAGHLAN-I-JADID, Afghanistan — Taliban insurgents have taken over parts of two northern provinces from which they were driven in 2001, threatening to disrupt NATO's new supply route from Central Asia and expand a war that's largely been confined to Afghanistan's southern half, U.S. and Afghan officials said.

Iran slows atom fuel drive, more cooperative: IAEA - 28 Aug 2009 at 1:36pm - VIENNA (Reuters) - Iran has slightly reduced the scale of its nuclear fuel production work and has fulfilled demands for more effective monitoring of its Natanz uranium enrichment site, the U.N. atomic watchdog said on Friday.

US will pay for lawyer in Italian kidnapping trial - 27 Aug 2009 at 3:51pm - WASHINGTON -- The Justice Department has agreed to pay for a lawyer to help a former State Department official fight Italian charges that she participated in the alleged CIA kidnapping of a suspected terrorist in 2003.

Former Guantanamo detainee to sue U.S. government - 27 Aug 2009 at 3:28pm - The family of a former Guantanamo inmate who claims he was 12 when arrested is suing the U.S. government for compensation for a seven-year imprisonment.

Thought for the day:
It's a dangerous business going out your front door. -J. R. R. Tolkien (1892 - 1973), The Fellowship of the Ring

Thursday, August 27, 2009

In the News: Aug-27

Wordle: In the News: Aug-27

Contractor accused of threats to kill witnesses - 27 Aug 2009 at 2:49pm - LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- A military contractor under investigation on allegations he overbilled and did faulty repair work on Navy and Army aircraft has been charged with threatening to kill witnesses in the case, according to a complaint unsealed Thursday.

Man dies after being Tasered at L.A. subway station - 27 Aug 2009 at 2:17pm - The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department says a man has died after a deputy shocked him three times with an electric stun gun at a subway station. Sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore says the man, who was not immediately identified, was at the North Hollywood Red Line station Wednesday night when a deputy repeatedly asked if he had a ticket.

US fears Yemen next staging ground for al-Qaida - 27 Aug 2009 at 1:51pm - WASHINGTON -- American authorities are pressuring Yemen to counter a rising internal al-Qaida threat more aggressively and improve intelligence-sharing amid growing worries that the country could become the next significant terrorist staging ground.

New jobless claims fall in latest week - 27 Aug 2009 at 9:06am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The number of U.S. workers filing new claims for jobless benefits fell last week to 570,000, and those collecting long-term unemployment benefits dropped to the lowest level since April, government data showed on Thursday.

CIA interrogators used Transport Canada documents - 27 Aug 2009 at 7:04am - A survival manual produced by Transport Canada was used by U.S. interrogators at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to set limits on dousing detainees with cold water, according to documents released this week.

Memos: CIA pushed limits on sleep deprivation - 27 Aug 2009 at 6:30am - WASHINGTON -- A year after the Bush administration abandoned its harshest interrogation methods, CIA operatives used severe sleep deprivation tactics against a terror detainee in late 2007, keeping him awake for six straight days with permission from government lawyers.

U.S. soldier killed; August tied for deadliest month in Afghanistan - 27 Aug 2009 at 5:36am - NATO says a U.S. service member has been killed in a militant attack involving a roadside bomb and gunfire.

Thought for the day:
Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder. -Arnold Toynbee (1889 - 1975)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

In the News: Aug-26

Wordle: In the News: Aug-26

CIA sacked Baghdad station chief after deaths of 2 detainees - 26 Aug 2009 at 7:59am - WASHINGTON — The CIA removed its station chief in Iraq and reorganized its operations there in late 2003 following "potentially very serious leadership lapses" that included the deaths of detainees in the U.S. custody, according to a newly released document and former senior officials.

U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy dies - 26 Aug 2009 at 7:22am - The last brother of the Kennedy political dynasty, U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy, died late Tuesday night after a year-long battle with brain cancer.

Defunct military court leaves Defence in chaos - 26 Aug 2009 at 5:36am - The Federal Government is scrambling to bring in new legislation to ensure Australia's Defence Force members are covered by a military justice system now the High Court has ruled that the Australian Military Court is unconstitutional.

CIA memo details procedures for breaking detainees - 26 Aug 2009 at 2:58am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Sleep deprivation, "insult slaps," water dousing and "walling," or slamming a detainee's head against a wall, were techniques used by CIA interrogators to break high-value detainees, according to an agency memo.

Thought for the day:
Disbelief in magic can force a poor soul into believing in government and business. -Tom Robbins (1936 - )

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

In the News: Aug-25

Wordle: In the News: Aug-25

Cheney criticizes "political" CIA probe plan - 25 Aug 2009 at 12:37pm - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney criticized President Barack Obama's ability to handle national security after the Justice Department appointed a special prosecutor to investigate CIA interrogation abuses.
As a good rule of thumb, probably the more vehemently Dick Cheney objects to a thing, the more beneficial & necessary the thing is. And, again, robbing the bank is illegal, no matter how successfully you robbed it, and no matter how desparately you wanted the cash.

Ottawa takes Khadr ruling fight to Supreme Court - 25 Aug 2009 at 10:50am - The federal government will go to the Supreme Court in a bid to overturn court rulings that would require Ottawa to press for the return of Canadian Omar Khadr from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, CBC News has learned.

New U.S. deaths make 2009 Afghan war's deadliest - 25 Aug 2009 at 7:55am - KABUL (Reuters) - Four U.S. servicemen were killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan on Tuesday, making 2009 the deadliest year for the growing contingent of foreign troops since the overthrow of the Taliban in 2001.

Thought for the day:
A government that robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.e. -George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950)

Monday, August 24, 2009

In the News: Aug-24

Wordle: In the News: Aug-24

Prosecutor to probe alleged CIA abuse - 24 Aug 2009 at 2:51pm - WASHINGTON -- A Justice Department official says Attorney General Eric Holder has picked prosecutor John Durham to investigate CIA mistreatment of terror suspects.

New Shiite alliance excludes Iraqi prime minister - 24 Aug 2009 at 10:21am - Major Shiite groups have formed a new alliance that will exclude the Iraqi prime minister, lawmakers said Monday, a step likely to stoke fears of increasing Iranian influence and shake up the political landscape before January parliamentary elections. The coalition will include the largest Shiite party, the Iranian-backed Supreme Iraqi Islamic Council, or SIIC, and anti-U.S. cleric Muqtada al-Sadr's bloc, as well as some small Sunni and secular parties.

Official: White House sets up interrogation unit - 24 Aug 2009 at 8:10am - WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama has moved forcefully to abandon Bush administration terrorism-era interrogation policies, approving creation of a special White House unit for questioning suspects as Attorney General Eric Holder weighs an internal Justice Department call to reopen and pursue a host of prisoner abuse cases.

Guantanamo prisoner detained as teen back in Afghanistan - 24 Aug 2009 at 6:44am - KABUL, Afghanistan — A young Afghan whose six-year detention at Guantanamo came to symbolize many of the problems of the Bush administration's war on terror detention policies arrived in his home country today, less than a month after a federal judge in Washington ordered his release.

Justice Dept advises pursuing CIA abuses: report - 24 Aug 2009 at 4:46am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Justice Department has recommended reopening nearly a dozen prisoner-abuse cases, which could expose CIA employees and contractors to prosecution for their treatment of terrorism suspects, The New York Times reported on Monday.

Thought for the day:
When dealing with the insane, the best method is to pretend to be sane. -Hermann Hesse (1877 - 1962)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

In the News: Aug-20

Wordle: In the News: Aug-20

Drop in world temperatures fuels global warming debate - Wednesday, August 19, 2009 - WASHINGTON — Has Earth's fever broken? Official government measurements show that the world's temperature has cooled a bit since reaching its most recent peak in 1998.

In hot water: World's ocean temps warmest recorded - 20 Aug 2009 at 1:16pm - WASHINGTON -- The world's oceans this summer are the warmest on record.

US training commander 'frustrated' in Iraq - 20 Aug 2009 at 11:37am - WASHINGTON -- The U.S. commander in charge of training Iraqi security forces says the deadly Baghdad bombings obviously represent a lapse in security and that he's personally frustrated with the pace of some training there.

CIA hired Blackwater in plan to kill militants: report - 20 Aug 2009 at 5:39am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The CIA in 2004 hired contractors from the private security firm Blackwater USA as part of a secret program to track and assassinate senior al Qaeda figures, the New York Times reported on Wednesday.

Thought for the day:
Sometime they'll give a war and nobody will come. -Carl Sandburg (1878 - 1967), The People, Yes (1936)

Monday, August 17, 2009

In the News: Aug-17

Wordle: In the News: Aug-17
Obama administration says marriage law unfair - 17 Aug 2009 at 10:16am - WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration has filed court papers claiming a federal marriage law discriminates against gays, even as it continues to defend the law.

Former Gov. Dean calls public option indispensable - 17 Aug 2009 at 9:23am - WASHINGTON -- Former Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean, a leading figure in the liberal wing of his party, said Monday he doubts there can be meaningful health care reform without a direct government role.

Iraq cabinet approves vote on U.S. security pact - 17 Aug 2009 at 7:39am - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq's cabinet has approved a bill paving the way for a referendum on a bilateral security pact signed last year between Washington and Baghdad, the government spokesman said in a statement on Monday.

U.S. commander in Iraq wants troops deployed - 17 Aug 2009 at 8:00am - The top U.S. commander in Iraq says he wants to deploy American soldiers to disputed territories in northern Iraq following a ...

Thought for the day:
Laws are spider webs through which the big flies pass and the little ones get caught. -Honore de Balzac (1799 - 1850)