Boing Drones and your Opinion Mood:
accident prone Now Playing: Boeing/Insitu and the war machine Topic: WAR
Susan Garrett Crowley firstname.lastname@example.org PO Box 963 Hood River, OR 97031 541-386-7729
INSITU DESERVES A HARDER LOOK
By Susan Garrett Crowley
Insitu, a local drone developer now owned by Boeing, has approached the city as a part of a public relations campaign to develop public support for its operations. Since Boeing/Insitu has initiated this discussion, residents may want to carefully consider the true nature of what it is designed to do for the U.S. military.
Insitu drones were developed to track moving targets on the ground. Early Insitu scientists had hoped to develop a product that would track fish schools for the kill, but found a limited market. Instead, its drones will probably be used directly or indirectly to track humans for the kill, as well as for simple surveillance.
Boeing/Insitu now choose to emphasize reconnaissance, not the targeting assistance, but their development history shows that both are intended. A development report dated April 14, 2005 and then posted on Insitu’s website described testing of its drone ScanEagle at White Sands Missile Range: The drone “ . . . provided . . . targeting support and [was] used to derive targeting information for the delivery of an ATAC missile and JDAM missile.”
According to the website, in March and June of 2004, the ScanEagle flew with a larger Predator drone – which is not made by Insitu, but which is armed and used in assassination missions -- during tests of “hand-off strategies” with the Predator as they “prosecute targets.” Preliminary results indicated “that ScanEagle was among the quickest for target acquisition and most accurate for target location designation.”
Insitu drones have now been used by the U.S. Marines, Navy and Air Force and in both Iraq and Afghanistan. The Boeing/Insitu website is no longer so frank.
From miles on high there is no way for a drone to project exactly who the human beings inside targeted buildings or vehicles might be. Many are individuals who die tragically in a crossfire not of their making. Inevitable targeting mistakes have already created more enemies for the U.S. in Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan, whose citizens refuse to consider their lost family members merely “collateral damage.”
Drones facilitate arm’s-length killing with no risk to the killer. Warfare without apparent cost can result in warfare without thought. It makes it easy for us to think we can occupy a foreign country and then savage our opposition and assassinate inconvenient local leaders – all by manipulating a computer joystick many miles away.
Moreover, it’s now assumed that the U.S. government can execute targeted assassinations of foreign citizens without benefit of any judicial process, an idea that would have been unthinkable just a decade ago and violates norms of international law. An official acknowledged this week that 367 people are now on the U.S. military’s kill list (New York Times, 8/10/09).
This is all done in our name, and Boeing/Insitu has an important role in it. Do we want to accept this with our silence? We already pay for it with our tax dollars.
We might take the lead of Insitu founder Tad McGeer, who left the company in part out of discomfort with its growing military focus. If Boeing/Insitu is asking for an endorsement of that kind of development in our communities, before we take their 30 pieces of silver, we might at least have an informed discussion of the role they play in forming the world our children will inherit.
Susan Garrett Crowley is a retired Hood River attorney and former mediator.
My cousinj Ted Westhusing Mood:
down Now Playing: What is the message ... What is the mission? Topic: WAR 28 November 2005 21:23 PST | Posted by Joe Anybody
How is honor possible in a war like the one in Iraq? "He was sick of money-grubbing contractors," the official recounted. Westhusing said that "he had not come over to Iraq for this."
.....Hey Joe! I turn around and say....."Yaa!?"
I heard it on the grapevine (Iternet site) HERE That your Cousin in the Iraq War, his Death is on a main thread "me ...? joe-anybody USA cousin Dead in Iraq? Well that could be any 2,000 or more of us ....did he mean my cousin?"
Most of the letter is a wrenching account of a struggle for honor in a strange land.
[This original post from Joe Anybody was in the Zebera 3 Report from 2005]
"I cannot support a msn (mission) that leads to corruption, human rights abuse and liars. I am sullied," it says. "I came to serve honorably and feel dishonored. "Death before being dishonored any more."
Westhusing struggled with the idea that monetary values could outweigh moral ones in war. At least thats what a psychologist is saying?
Listen to this NPR short interview with T Christian Miller from the Los Angles Times --Right Here!
Lies & Deception regarding Bin Laden working for the US Mood:
mischievious Now Playing: The 911 officail story smells even more - Read what Sibel Edmonds is reporting Topic: 911 TRUTH
Z3-ers here we read what we probably already had surmised. The USA covert operations of "lies & deceptions" is coming home to roost. As we have maintained here in the Z3 Report .... the official 911 story is bullshit. So now my fellow readers, try to wrap your head around this news bombshell.... http://blacklistednews.com/?news_id=5056
Former FBI translator and founder of the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition, Sibel Edmonds.
In the interview, Sibel says that the US maintained ‘intimate relations’ with Bin Laden, and the Taliban, “all the way until that day of September 11.”
These ‘intimate relations’ included using Bin Laden for ‘operations’ in Central Asia, including Xinjiang, China. These ‘operations’ involved using al Qaeda and the Taliban in the same manner “as we did during the Afghan and Soviet conflict,” that is, fighting ‘enemies’ via proxies.
As Sibel has previously described, and as she reiterates in this latest interview, this process involved using Turkey (with assistance from ‘actors from Pakistan, and Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia’) as a proxy, which in turn used Bin Laden and the Taliban and others as a proxy terrorist army.
Control of Central Asia
The goals of the American ’statesmen’ directing these activities included control of Central Asia’s vast energy supplies and new markets for military products.
The Americans had a problem, though. They needed to keep their fingerprints off these operations to avoid a) popular revolt in Central Asia ( Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan), and b) serious repercussions from China and Russia. They found an ingenious solution: Use their puppet-state Turkey as a proxy, and appeal to both pan-Turkic and pan-Islam sensibilities.
Turkey, a NATO ally, has a lot more credibility in the region than the US and, with the history of the Ottoman Empire, could appeal to pan-Turkic dreams of a wider sphere of influence. The majority of the Central Asian population shares the same heritage, language and religion as the Turks.
In turn, the Turks used the Taliban and al Qaeda, appealing to their dreams of a pan-Islamic caliphate (Presumably. Or maybe the Turks/US just paid very well.)
This started more than a decade-long illegal, covert operation in Central Asia by a small group in the US intent on furthering the oil industry and the Military Industrial Complex, using Turkish operatives, Saudi partners and Pakistani allies, furthering this objective in the name of Islam.
Sibel was recently asked to write about the recent situation with the Uighurs in Xinjiang, but she declined, apart from saying that “our fingerprint is all over it.”
Of course, Sibel isn’t the first or only person to recognize any of this. Eric Margolis, one of the best reporters in the West on matters of Central Asia, stated that the Uighurs in the training camps in Afghanistan up to 2001:
“were being trained by Bin Laden to go and fight the communist Chinese in Xinjiang, and this was not only with the knowledge, but with the support of the CIA, because they thought they might use them if war ever broke out with China.”
And also that:
“Afghanistan was not a hotbed of terrorism, these were commando groups, guerrilla groups, being trained for specific purposes in Central Asia.”
“That illustrates Henry Kissinger’s bon mot that the only thing more dangerous than being America’s enemy is being an ally, because these people were paid by the CIA, they were armed by the US, these Chinese Muslims from Xinjiang, the most-Western province.
The CIA was going to use them in the event of a war with China, or just to raise hell there, and they were trained and supported out of Afghanistan, some of them with Osama Bin Laden’s collaboration. The Americans were up to their ears with this.”
Last year, Sibel came up with a brilliant idea to expose some of the criminal activity that she is forbidden to speak about: she published eighteen photos, titled “Sibel Edmonds’ State Secrets Privilege Gallery,” of people involved the operations that she has been trying to expose. One of those people is Anwar Yusuf Turani, the so-called ‘President-in-exile’ of East Turkistan (Xinjiang). This so-called ‘government-in-exile’ was ‘established‘ on Capitol Hill in September, 2004, drawing a sharp rebuke from China.
Also featured in Sibel’s Rogues Gallery was ‘former’ spook Graham Fuller, who was instrumental in the establishment of Turani’s ‘government-in-exile’ of East Turkistan. Fuller has written extensively on Xinjiang, and his “Xinjiang Project” for Rand Corp is apparently the blueprint for Turani’s government-in-exile. Sibel has openly stated her contempt for Mr. Fuller.
The Turkish establishment has a long history of mingling matters of state with terrorism, drug trafficking and other criminal activity, best exemplified by the 1996 Susurluk incident which exposed the so-called Deep State.
Sibel states that “a few main Susurluk actors also ended up in Chicago where they centered ‘certain’ aspects of their operations (Especially East Turkistan-Uighurs).”One of the main Deep State actors, Mehmet Eymur, former Chief of Counter-Terrorism for Turkey’s intelligence agency, the MIT, features in Sibel’s Rogues Gallery.
Eymur was given exile in the US. Another member of Sibel’s gallery, Marc Grossman was Ambassador to Turkey at the time that the Susurluk incident exposed the Deep State. He was recalled shortly after, prior to the end of his assignment, as was Grossman’s underling, Major Douglas Dickerson, who later tried to recruit Sibel
into the spying ring.
The modus operandi of the Susurluk gang is the same as the activities that Sibel describes as taking place in Central Asia, the only difference is that this activity was exposed in Turkey a decade ago, whereas the organs of the state in the US, including the corporate media, have successfully suppressed this story.
Chechnya, Albania & Kosovo
Central Asia is not the only place where American foreign policy makers have shared interests with Bin Laden. Consider the war in Chechnya. As I documented here, Richard Perle and Stephen Solarz (both in Sibel’s gallery) joined other leading neocon luminaries such as Elliott Abrams, Kenneth Adelman, Frank Gaffney, Michael Ledeen, James Woolsey, and Morton Abramowitz in a group called the American Committee for Peace in Chechnya (ACPC). For his part, Bin Laden donated $25 million to the cause, as well as numerous fighters, and technical expertise, establishing training camps.
US interests also converged with those of al-Qaeda in Kosovo and Albania.
Of course, it is not uncommon for circumstances to arise where ‘the enemy of my enemy is my friend.’ On the other hand, in a transparent democracy, we expect a full accounting of the circumstances leading up to a tragic event like 9/11. The 9/11 Commission was supposed to provide exactly that.
Sibel has famously been dubbed the most gagged woman in America, having the State Secrets Privilege imposed on her twice. Her 3.5 hour testimony to the 9/11 Commission has been entirely suppressed, reduced to a single footnote which refers readers to her classified testimony.
In the interview, she says that the information that was classified in her case specifically identifies that the US was using Bin Laden and the Taliban in Central Asia, including Xinjiang. In the interview, Sibel reiterates that when invoking the gag orders, the US government claims that it is protecting ” ’sensitive diplomatic relations,’ protecting Turkey, protecting Israel, protecting Pakistan, protecting Saudi Arabia…” This is no doubt partially true, but it is also true that they are protecting themselves too, and it is a crime in the US to use classification and secrecy to cover up crimes.
I have information about things that our government has lied to us about… those things can be proven as lies, very easily, based on the information they classified in my case, because we did carry very intimate relationship with these people, and it involves Central Asia, all the way up to September 11.
The bombshell here is obviously that certain people in the US were using Bin Laden up to September 11, 2001.
It is important to understand why: the US outsourced terror operations to al Qaeda and the Taliban for many years, promoting the Islamization of Central Asia in an attempt to personally profit off military sales as well as oil and gas concessions.
The silence by the US government on these matters is deafening. So, too, is the blowback.
CASCADIA TO CARACAS Mood:
energetic Now Playing: Joe Anybody fundraiser "Video's from the Front-Lines" Topic: MEDIA
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CASCADIA TO CARACAS
Delegates from the Portland Venezuela Peace and Media delegation are hosting a fundraiser to support their upcoming trip to Venezuela. The event will feature two students from Evergreen College who just returned from a trip to Venezuela.Also featured will be a film by Joe Anybody, Cascadia to Caracas, the first part of his two-part series.
The trip’s focus is part of a mission to introduce US peace activists to the variety of organizational forms and actions that the Venezuelan people have built to achieve their political objectives. By learning from these examples, anti-war activists will be better prepared to creatively respond to the challenges that lie ahead in the US.
“This trip is an important connection to peace and justice activities in an area that has seen an increase in community organizing” says Joe Anybody, one of the delegation’s videographers who will be filming the delegation in action.“ In documenting the delegation’s trip, I want to share what I learn in Venezuela with the people in Portland when I return.I want to capture and share the organizing struggles of the people of Venezuela.I’m excited to see firsthand what’s going on and to report back.”
Joe Anybody is a Portland independent media videographer who has been making films about human rights issues for over 5 years.He films activism of groups such as Seriously Pissed-Off Grannies, Code Pink, Veterans for Peace, PDXpeace, Peace and Justice Works, PPRC, Individuals For Justice, Portland Copwatch and other important human rights events in the Pacific Northwest.
The Portland Venezuela Peace and Media delegation is part of a larger delegation to Venezuela hosted by PCASC, the Portland Central America Solidarity Committee.PCASC, a Portland-based nonprofit organization, has been working for peace and justice in the Portland area and in solidarity with Latin America for over 30 years,
When: Saturday, August 15, 2009 at 4 PM
Where: In the Miller Gallery, Mark Bldg. – 1219 SW Park Ave, Portland, Ore., 97205
Many modern-day baseball stadiums prohibit smoking, but cancer danger apparently still lurks around the corner: An anti-meat consumer group alleges in a class-action that hot dogs pose serious health risks and need to carry warning labels.
The lawsuit was filed in Essex County, N.J., by The Cancer Project on behalf of three New Jersey residents. Among the named defendants are Nathan's Famous; Kraft Foods, which manufactures Oscar Mayer wieners; Sara Lee; ConAgra, which makes Hebrew National franks; and Marathon, manufacturer of Sabrett, "the frankfurter New Yorker's [sic] relish."
The plaintiffs envision a warning label similar to the one on cigarette packages. The wording would look something like: "Warning: Consuming hot dogs and other processed meats increases the risk of cancer."
The suit notes that a two-year-old study from the American Institute for Cancer Research suggests that eating the amount of processed meat in a single hot dog -- about 2 ounces -- every day increases the risk of colorectal cancer by 21%. That study recommends limiting red meat consumption to 18 ounces per week, and avoiding processed meats altogether. Another study, released this year by the National Cancer Institute, found that people who eat large amounts of red and processed meats are more likely to die from cancer or cardiovascular disease.
Nitrites, used to keep hot dogs fresh, are the main culprit, according to the suit: They join themselves to naturally occurring amines, forming carcinogenic compounds.
The Cancer Project, a nonprofit based in Washington, D.C., is focused on promoting a healthy diet that decreases the risk of cancer. The group specifically recommends a diet that is "free of animal products, high in plant foods, and low in fat."
According to The Cancer Project, Americans ate 1.5 billion pounds of hot dogs in 2006 and the average person eats 32 pounds of processed meat a year.
(ProjectCensored) – Osama bin Laden’s role in the events of September 11, 2001 is not mentioned on the FBI’s “Ten Most Wanted” poster.
On June 5, 2006, author Ed Haas contacted the Federal Bureau of Investigation headquarters to ask why, while claiming that bin Laden is wanted in connection with the August 1998 bombings of US Embassies in Tanzania and Kenya, the poster does not indicate that he is wanted in connection with the events of 9/11.
Rex Tomb, Chief of Investigative Publicity for the FBI responded, “The reason why 9/11 is not mentioned on Osama bin Laden’s Most Wanted page is because the FBI has no hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11.” Tomb continued, “Bin Laden has not been formally charged in connection to 9/11.”
Asked to explain the process, Tomb responded, “The FBI gathers evidence. Once evidence is gathered, it is turned over to the Department of Justice. The Department of Justice then decides whether it has enough evidence to present to a federal grand jury. In the case of the 1998 United States Embassies being bombed, bin Laden has been formally indicted and charged by a grand jury. He has not been formally indicted and charged in connection with 9/11 because the FBI has no hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11.”
Haas pauses to ask the question, “If the US government does not have enough hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11, how is it possible that it had enough evidence to invade Afghanistan to ‘smoke him out of his cave?’” Through corporate media, the Bush administration told the American people that bin Laden was “Public Enemy Number One,” responsible for the deaths of nearly 3,000 people on September 11, 2001. The federal government claims to have invaded Afghanistan to “root out” bin Laden and the Taliban, yet nearly six years later, the FBI said that it had no hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11. Though the world was to have been convinced by the December 2001 release of a bin Laden “confession video,” the Department of Defense issued a press release to accompany this video in which Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said, “There was no doubt of bin Laden’s responsibility for the 9/11 attacks even before the tape was discovered.”
In a CNN article regarding the bin Laden tape, then New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani said that “the tape removes any doubt that the US military campaign targeting bin Laden and his associates is more than justified.” Senator Richard Shelby, R-Alabama, the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee said, “The tape’s release is central to informing people in the outside world who don’t believe bin Laden was involved in the September 11 attacks.” Shelby went on to say “I don’t know how they can be in denial after they see this tape.”
Haas attempted to secure a reference to US government authentication of the bin Laden “confession video,” to no avail. However, it is conclusive that the Bush Administration and US Congress, along with corporate media, presented the video as authentic. So why doesn’t the FBI view the “confession video” as hard evidence? After all, notes Haas, if the FBI is investigating a crime such as drug trafficking, and it discovers a video of members of a drug cartel openly talking about a successful distribution operation in the United States, that video would be presented to a federal grand jury. The participants identified in the video would be indicted. The video alone would serve as sufficient evidence to net a conviction in a federal court. So why, asks Haas, is the bin Laden “confession video” not carrying the same weight with the FBI?
Haas strongly suggests that we begin asking questions, “The fact that the FBI has no hard evidence connecting Osama bin Laden to 9/11 should be headline news around the world. The challenge to the reader is to find out why it is not. Why has the US media blindly read the government-provided 9/11 scripts, rather than investigate without passion, prejudice, or bias, the events of September 11, 2001? Why has the US media blacklisted any guest that might speak of a government-sponsored 9/11 cover-up, rather than seeking out those people who have something to say about 9/11 that is contrary to the government’s account?” Haas continues. “Who is controlling the media message, and how is it that the FBI has no ‘hard evidence’ connecting Osama bin Laden to the events of September 11, 2001, while the US media has played the bin Laden-9/11 connection story for [six] years now as if it has conclusive evidence that bin Laden is responsible for the collapse of the twin towers, the Pentagon attack, and the demise of United Flight 93?”
UPDATE BY ED HAAS On June 6, 2006 the Muckraker Report ran a piece by Ed Haas titled “FBI says, ‘No hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11.’” Haas is the editor and a writer for the Muckraker Report. At the center of this article remains the authenticity and truthfulness of the videotape released by the federal government on December 13, 2001 in which it is reported that Osama bin Laden “confesses” to the September 11, 2001 attacks. The corporate media—television, radio, and newspapers—across the United States and the world repeated, virtually non-stop for a week after the videotape’s release, the government account of OBL “confessing.”
However, not one document has been released that demonstrates the authenticity of the videotape or that it even went through an authentication process. The Muckraker Report has submitted Freedom of Information Act requests to the FBI, CIA, Department of Defense, and CENTCOM requesting documentation that would demonstrate the authenticity of the videotape and the dates/circumstances in which the videotape was discovered. CENTCOM has yet to reply to the FOIA request. After losing an appeal, the FBI responded that no documents could be found responsive to the request. The Department of Defense referred the Muckraker Report to CENTCOM while also indicating that it had no documents responsive to the FOIA request either.
The CIA however claims that it can neither confirm nor deny the existence or nonexistence of records responsive to the request. According to the CIA the fact of the existence or nonexistence of requested records is properly classified and is intelligence sources and methods information that is protected from disclosure by section 6 of the CIA Act of 1949, as amended. Therefore, the Agency has denied your request pursuant to FOIA exemptions (b)(1) and (b)(3).
Many people believe that if the videotape is authentic, it should be sufficient hard evidence for the FBI to connect bin Laden to 9/11. The Muckraker Report agrees. However, for the Department of Justice to indict bin Laden for the 9/11 attacks, something the government has yet to do, the videotape would have to be entered into evidence and subjected to additional scrutiny. This appears to be something the government wishes to avoid.
Some believe that the video is a fake. They refer to it as the “fat bin Laden”video. The Muckraker Report believes that while the videotape is indeed authentic, it was the result of an elaborate CIA sting operation. The Muckraker Report also believes that the reason why there is no documentation that demonstrates that the videotape went through an authenticity process is because the CIA knew it was authentic, they arranged the taping.
It is highly probable that the videotape was taped on September 26, 2001—before the US invaded Afghanistan.
Compromising Democracy in Honduras Mood:
don't ask Now Playing: An article by Shamus Cook from Portland Oregon Topic: POLITICS
Z3 Readers here is an articel afriend of mine wrote this morning:
Compromising Democracy in Honduras
by shamus cook
Can a solution to the crisis in Honduras — itself the result of a military coup — be “mediated,” where on one side sit coup leaders and on the other a democratically elected but ousted President? Does any “middle ground” exist? Of course not. If President Zelaya unconditionally returns to finish his term in office, democracy will be restored; anything short of that will have democracy “compromised” into its opposite.
Obama is the behind-the-scenes organizer of this negotiated farce, even though he has no legal or moral right to undermine the democratic process in Honduras. His Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, brought the parties together and chose an “objective” mediator, Costa Rican President Oscar Arias — someone who has obviously aligned himself with the United States.
And while Arias is the “official” mediator, Obama will be the one calling the shots, using U.S. economic and military clout to bully the opposing sides into an “acceptable deal.”
For example, when some members of the coup leadership were still using obstinate language against a deal with ousted President Zelaya, the U.S. finally announced it would withhold $16.5 million in military assistance to the country.
If this announcement were made the day the coup took place — as it was legally required to under U.S. law — the coup would have been crushed. Now, the money is simply being used to cajole the coup plotters into a more pliable position at the bargaining table; a place at which they obstinately refused to sit previously. It was also announced that $165 million in aide to Honduras could be in jeopardy. That is, if the coup leaders don’t do exactly as the U.S. demands.
And this highlights a stark fact that many Obama supporters are refusing to see: the origins of the coup, and indeed its resolution, lie squarely on the shoulders of the U.S. When a country [the U.S.] trains and funds another nation’s military [Honduras], while also purchasing the vast majority of that country’s exports, and supplying it with enormous financial aid, there is little ground for “equal footing.”
In fact, all of Obama’s rhetoric about leaving South America to the South Americans is a conscious ploy at public relations. In reality, the economic and military screws continue to be tightened, and U.S. foreign policy continues as it always has.
After the coup first happened, the entire world reacted with horror, condemnation, and sanctions of various kinds, while everyone understood that only one country had the economic and military influence to actually reverse it…instantly.
Obama purposely dragged his feet. He cleverly tagged the U.S. name on U.N and O.A.S resolutions, while doing absolutely nothing in the realm of guns, trade, or aid — the places where actual power is wielded.
The New York Times correctly noted that “the mixed messages have emboldened Honduras’s de facto government…” (July 7, 2009).
Also emboldening the coup leaders is Obama’s virtual silence around the fact that Honduras has been transformed into a democracy-free zone, where anti-coup media has been silenced, a military curfew enforced, basic rights suspended, and unarmed protestors killed.
Ousted President Zelaya correctly noted that “if they [the U.S.] decide to live with the coup, then democracy in the Americas is over."
This is a bold yet correct assessment of the situation in Latin America, carrying with it enormous implications. Zelaya described in vivid detail one such consequence while talking to Hillary Clinton about his kidnapping at gunpoint. He asked her, “What have Latin American presidents learned from Honduras? To sleep with our clothes on and our bags packed.”
And while media outlets treated the comment as a mere joke, the truth of it will reverberate throughout Latin America. If a military coup against a democratically elected government is not completely reversed, elites in the region will be profoundly encouraged to follow the Honduran formula and return to a time where U.S.-backed military coups and mass repression were commonplace.
And while Obama has recently repeated that President Zelaya should be returned to finish out his presidential term, Hillary Clinton “…stopped short of calling for his reinstatement, a departure from statements by President Obama earlier Tuesday…” (New York Times July 7, 2009).
This good-cop-bad-cop routine isn’t by accident, but appears to be an emerging signature of Obama’s forked tongue political method: he says what he thinks people want to hear, while others close to him pursue a different course.
It is unclear at this time what type of rotten compromise will emerge. Zelaya will either be prevented from returning to his Presidency, or as a senior U.S. official leaked to the press, “…Zelaya would be allowed to return and serve out his remaining six months in office with limited powers…” (Associated Press, July 7, 2009).
Either scenario will have democracy severely eroded, so that those who previously dominated Honduran society — the local super-wealthy and rich U.S. investors — will remain all powerful.
The average, working class Honduran, however, is acting independently. A mass march of at least 100,000 congregated at the airport last week during President Zelaya’s failed attempt to re-enter the country, a fact heavily obscured or ignored by the U.S. media.
The country’s school teachers are also jointly striking until Zelaya is returned, while talks of a general strike continue. If such a strike were successfully carried through, all the maneuvers of Obama and the native Honduran elite will have been for naught, and the unconditional return of President Zelaya will be assured.
If that were to happen, the working class would be further forced to defend democracy, by arresting all those who conspired to overthrow the democratically elected Zelaya, including any implicated members of the military, the Honduran business elite, foreign corporation representatives, and members of Congress.
Police crowd control tatics at the G20 Mood:
a-ok Now Playing: The rights to protest get *Scuttled in order to *Kettle the crowds at big protests Topic: PROTEST!
This is a short article about the police use of "control tatics" in reference to the G20 protest and the up-coming Olympic in 2012. Scuttling the rights to protest in order to "Kettle" the crowd to surpress them. Sure seems like this discussion is much needed and years long over due.
Police risk losing public confidence if they do not change how they manage protests, the police watchdog has said.
Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Constabulary, Denis O'Connor, said senior officers were too focused on dealing with disorder, and not enough on allowing peaceful protest.
Public order training and tactics were "inadequate for the modern day", he said, in his review of the G20 protests in central London on April 1.
The report found officers were too interested in whether protests were lawful or not, instead of focusing on allowing peaceful demonstrations.
Some officers policing G20 were not sufficiently aware of human rights laws, he said, and he criticised police use of containment to pen in demonstrators on the day Ian Tomlinson died, calling it "inconsistent".
Mr O'Connor called on the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) to carry out a wide-ranging review of tactics and training for officers dealing with protesters.
The review should include a medical assessment of the damage done by shields and batons carried by riot police, he said.
In future, containment should be used more flexibly, and vulnerable or distressed people should be allowed out, he said.
Mr O'Connor said the changes needed to be made as soon as possible to "meet the challenges of the 21st century", and would be especially important for the Olympic Games in 2012.
The report backed the continued use of containment techniques known as "kettling". Mr O'Connor said they were useful in preventing "running riots", but he said they needed to be tempered, and officers needed to watch the crowds for signs of anyone in distress.
On June 25, 2009, the Supreme Court ruled 8-1 that school officials'
strip-search of a thirteen-year-old girl violated the Fourth Amendment.
Safford, Arizona school employees forced middle school student Savana Redding to disrobe during their search for an ibuprofen tablet.
Possession of such medication violates school rules, but the strip search failed to uncover a single pill. The search was conducted based on another student's allegations, and Ms. Redding alleged that it violated her Fourth Amendment right to be free from unreasonable searches or seizures.
Justice Souter, writing for the Court, held that school searches are permissible when they are "not excessively intrusive in light of the age and sex of the student and the nature of the infraction." However, the Court ruled that "[t]he strip search of Savana Redding was a violation of the Fourth Amendment" because "there were no reasons to suspect the drugs presented a danger or were concealed in her underwear." Ms. Redding's "subjective expectation of privacy against such a search" Justice Souter wrote, "is inherent in her account of it as embarrassing, frightening, and humiliating." Justice Thomas dissented from the decision, writing that "judges are not qualified to second-guess the best manner for maintaining quiet and order in the school environment."
A majority of the Justices also held that school officials were not liable for damages because it was not "clearly established" that their behavior was unlawful at the time of the search. Justices Stevens and Ginsburg disagreed, writing that a previous Supreme Court case made clear that the search was "excessively intrusive."
Previously, a federal appellate court held that the search in Redding was unreasonable and that a school official could be liable for violating the girl's Fourth Amendment rights. The school district and school officials appealed to the Supreme Court and argued that the search was reasonable based upon the allegations and the dangers of prescription drug abuse. Additionally, they argued that the school employees must have qualified immunity in exercising their discretion so that they are free to exercise their judgment regarding drug abuse in schools and, further, without such authority, the school authorities would not have the ability to respond in the face of threats to student safety in school.
The Redding decision comes on the heels of EPIC's "Stop Digital Strip Searches" campaign, which seeks to suspend the use of "Whole Body Imaging"
-- devices that photograph American air travelers stripped naked in US airports. The body scanners subject US travelers to invasive, high-tech versions of the strip search characterized as "unconstitutional" in Redding.
The EPIC campaign responds to a policy reversal by federal officials that would make the "digital strip search" mandatory, rather than voluntary as originally announced.