Yemen printer bombs false flag? - Paul Craig Roberts. Faisal interview
(1) Yemen printer bombs false flag? - Paul Craig Roberts
(2) Yemen printer bombs: US officials (ie CIA) intercepted "test run" packages in September
(3) Faisal interview on a Mid-East Settlement
(4) Warplanes for Saudi Arabia will have technology built in to prevent use against Israel
(1) Yemen printer bombs false flag? - Paul Craig Roberts
From: Sami Joseph <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: 07.11.2010 10:13 PM
Subject: [altahrir] Who Has The Crystal Ball?
http://www.globalre search.ca/ index.php? context=va& aid=21729
Who Has The Crystal Ball?
by Paul Craig Roberts
My conservative and Republican acquaintances believe that the "liberal media" is destroying America. When I ask them to identify the liberal media, the usual reply is, "all of it!" I ask them about Fox "News," CNN, and point out that the TV networks are no longer independent but parts of large corporate conglomerates and that all of the "liberal" news anchors have been fired or died off.
At that point my acquaintances fall back on the New York Times and the Washington Post.
I remind them that the invasion of Iraq would not have been possible without the New York Times leading the way. Judith Miller filled that newspaper with the neoconservative/ Bush regime propaganda that was orchestrated to make the public accept US aggression toward Iraq. The Times later sort of apologized and Miller departed the paper.
That left the Washington Post, apparently long a CIA asset, as the "liberal media" that is destroying America, until on October 31 the paper's long-time pundit, David Broder, wrote that Obama should spend the next two years disarming the Republicans and renewing the economy by orchestrating a showdown with Iran. Going to war with Iran, "the greatest threat to the world," would simultaneously unite Republicans with Obama and restore the economy. By following Broder's prescription, Obama "will have made the world safer and may be regarded as one of the most successful presidents in history."
Here we have the "liberal" Broder at the "liberal" Washington Post advocating the neoconservative' s desired war with Iran.
The irony deepens. My acquaintances regard Obama as a Marxist and a Muslim. It does not occur to my acquaintances that the military/security complex and Wall Street would not put a Marxist in the White House, or that AIPAC would not put a Muslim in the White House, or that a Muslim would not have chosen a dual Israeli citizen as his chief of staff and staffed up his government with Jews friendly to Israel, or that a Muslim would not have renewed the war in Afghanistan and started new ones in Pakistan and Yeman, or that, if a Muslim, Obama would be averse to slaughtering Muslims in behalf of the neocons' world hegemony agenda.
Chris Hedges writes in Truthdig:
"The American left is a phantom. It is conjured up by the right wing to tag Barack Obama as a socialist and used by the liberal class to justify its complacency and lethargy. It diverts attention from corporate power. It perpetuates the myth of a democratic system that is influenced by the votes of citizens, political platforms and the work of legislators. It keeps the world neatly divided into a left and a right. The phantom left functions as a convenient scapegoat. The right wing blames it for moral degeneration and fiscal chaos. The liberal class uses it to call for 'moderation.'
The corporations that control mass communications conjure up the phantom of a left. They blame the phantom for our debacle. And they get us to speak in absurdities."
But that's America. The people simply cannot put two and two together. Thinking is not an activity of the American public.
Indeed, Americans are incapable of thought on any subject.
Consider the latest bomb scare initially blamed on a young pro-American female student in Yemen who luckily was released before she was tortured and raped. Allegedly, bombs disguised as printer ink modules passed through lax cargo security and were on their way to blow up something. Everyone immediately endorsed the story. UPS pilots urged US officials to tighten cargo screening worldwide. The US has sent a team into Yemen to take over security.
Somehow the security services that were unable to foil the 9/11 plot were able to penetrate this plot before it succeeded.
Consider the timeliness of the foiled plot. British Airways Chairman Martin Broughton and other European officials recently accused the US of making inane demands on airline passengers, such as removing their shoes and separate examinations of laptop computers. Broughton even declared: "Europe should not have to kowtow to the Americans every time they want something done to beef up security on US bound flights."
The owner of London's Heathrow Airport agreed. The European Union has challenged the US requirement for European passengers to have online checks before boarding flights bound for the US, declaring the requirement a "burdensome measure."
Miraculously, a plot is exposed that brands British Airways, London's Heathrow, and the EU as "soft on terrorism security."
Or what about this motive? The Obama regime wants to send CIA hunter-killer teams into Yemen to murder people suspected of hostility to America. CIA drones would be used to blow up suspects despite the proven fact that the CIA drones used in Afghanistan and in violation of Pakistan's sovereignty mainly kill innocent people.
Yemen's President, Ali Abdullah Saleh said that he opposes America's violation of his country's sovereignty, but, alas, it was the Yemeni President's lax air cargo security that let the bombs through. So his protests, too, are discredited by the lax security that enabled the printer ink plot. Unless US forces are in Yemen eliminating terrorists, the world is not safe.
Americans never ask the old Roman question, "who benefits?"
Consider, for example, the "underwear bomber." How likely is it that Al Qaeda, allegedly having successfully outwitted all 16 US intelligence agencies, the National Security Council, NORAD, airport security, the Pentagon, and the security agencies of all US allies including Israel and brought down the World Trade towers and successfully attacked the Pentagon itself, would choose as a sequel blowing up a mere airliner with an underwear bomb, a shoe bomb, and a shampoo/toothpaste/ underarm deodorant bomb? Having acquired the stature associated with 9/11, blowing up an airliner is a big comedown in prestige. It conveys the image of a washed-up Al Qaeda.
Again, who benefits? The most obvious beneficiary of the underwear bomber is the corporation that manufactures the full body scanners that show people as if they are naked. Obviously, the machines were already produced and awaiting a contract. Without the underwear bomber and the hype and fear the media generated over the new threat, it is unlikely the government could have succeeded with such massive violation of personal privacy.
It would be interesting to know what company manufactures the body scanners and what its relationship is to the US and Israeli governments. But these questions never occur to Americans or to the "liberal media."
As a member of the Congressional staff during the 1970s, both House and Senate and committee and member staffs, I learned that except for rare occurrences, the legislation that Congress passes and the President signs is written either by executive agencies or by lobbyists. Congress did not write the PATRIOT Act. It was written in advance of 9/11 awaiting its opportunity. President Bush's National Security Advisor, Condi Rice, is on record saying that no one ever suspected such an event as 9/11 with terrorists using hijacked airliners as missiles against the World Trade Center and Pentagon. Why then was the voluminous PATRIOT Act sitting waiting?
Whose crystal ball read the future and had the PATRIOT Act drafted in advance?
Whose crystal ball foresaw the underwear bomber and had the full body scanners ready to be deployed?
Are these amazing coincidences or orchestrated events?
(2) Yemen printer bombs: US officials (ie CIA) intercepted "test run" packages in September
Yemen Packages, Stolen Identity Show `Wild West' of Air Cargo
By Mary Jane Credeur and Angela Greiling Keane - Tue Nov 02 20:12:26 GMT 2010
... A 22-year-old Yemeni student whose name was used to send the U.S.-bound explosives was a victim of identity theft, officials in that country said.
US suspected Yemen-based terrorists would use cargo holds two months ago
American officials suspected Yemen-based al-Qaeda terrorists might be planning to use cargo holds to send bombs abroad after intercepting "test run" packages in September.
By Richard Spencer, Middle East Correspondent
Published: 9:35PM GMT 02 Nov 2010
Several packages were stopped in transit on their way to Chicago and searched, American officials confirmed.
Last week's bombs, found in Dubai and at East Midlands Airport, were addressed to synagogues also in Chicago.
The sender is understood to have been someone in the Yemen with known links to Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, according to reports. The packages contained books, religious literature and a computer disc, but no explosives.
"At the time, people obviously took notice and, knowing of the terrorist group's interest in aviation, considered the possibility that AQAP might be exploring the logistics of the cargo system," an official told The New York Times.
"When we learned of last week's serious threat, people recalled the incident and factored it in to our government's very prompt response."
The fact that the packages were allowed to go on their way, to apparently random addresses, after no explosives were found will raise questions about how last week's bombs were allowed to travel as far as they did, given they were addressed to Chicago synagogues.
The finds in September also came from intelligence tip-offs, as did those last week.
The purpose of the test run was almost certainly to check the route the parcels would take and plan an optimum time to trigger an explosion. Tracking numbers attached to packages' receipts allow senders to follow them as they travel from hub to hub.
(3) Faisal interview on a Mid-East Settlement
From: Kenneth Rasmusson <email@example.com> Date: 07.11.2010 09:17 PM
Subject: [altahrir] Prince Turki Al-Faisal
The Heart of the Conflict in the Middle East:
A Conversation with His Royal Highness Prince Turki Al-Faisal
Thursday, November 4, 2010 ~ 12:15 P.M. ~ Washington DC
Prepared remarks, please check against delivery
A Conversation with His Royal Highness Prince Turki Al-Faisal
Thursday, November 4, 2010 ~ 12:15 P.M. ~ Washington DC
His Royal Highness Prince Turki Al-Faisal
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I would first like to thank you for having me speak to you today. The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace is an excellent institution that does important work by following the ideals of its founder to help establish stronger international laws and organizations. As Andrew Carnegie himself said, "As I grow older, I pay less attention to what men say, I just watch what they do." This institution has definitely done just that, and the world is a far better place for it.
And in the spirit of going out and getting busy, I offer my most frank opinions on how the Israelis and Palestinians might arrive at peace after many, many years of conflict. My prescriptions will be based on the tenets of the Arab Peace Initiative proposed in 2002 by King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. They will also be based on my own analysis of the situation, especially relating to some of the difficulties that seem to have stalled President Obama's recent efforts to convince the two parties to cooperate for peace. I speak to you of the actions that have fomented discord and sought to bring about instability in our region; of governments and quasi-governments that have tried to capitalize on the resulting existing troubles to further their own political ambitions and ideological influence, although they are lacking in merit. Further, I discuss what I believe to be mistakes on the part of various parties, politicians and pundits relative to the conflict. And finally, I tell you of what I believe to be the path to a true and lasting peace, and remind all here of how the Saudi leadership has worked with our friends and allies to help realize this vital goal.
As this learned audience well knows, the Palestinian/Israeli conflict is the cause of numerous threats to peace and prosperity in a wide number of locales around the globe. Yet despite this international resonance, I impress upon you what I consider to be the element that is the core of the conflict; I am speaking of the plight of the Palestinian people. For too long they have been denied justice. For too long they have been denied the basic human rights that many of us take for granted. And for too long they have been denied what is absolutely reasonable for them to seek - the opportunity to live in an independent state with East Jerusalem as its capital, on the lands occupied by Israel in 1967 which are recognized by the international community as being illegally occupied by the Israelis.
Some of you may disagree with my definition of what is absolutely reasonable, but let me remind you that I am far from alone, and that while of course all in the Arab world agree with me, there are also many Americans and even Israelis who share my view. Those of us who believe in this position take as our guidepost U.N Resolution 242, issued shortly after the Six-Day War in 1967 in an attempt to forestall further bloodshed by providing a framework to secure peace. The resolution called for:
"The establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East, with the withdrawal of Israeli armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict."
There are numerous opinions as to the exact meaning of the resolution. To me it is very straightforward: "occupied territories" clearly means the lands taken by the Israelis in the 1967 war. There is no room for ambiguity in this, and the passage of time will, I believe, show that those who oppose this specific Israeli violation of international law are overwhelmingly in the right.
Since 1967 we have seen subsequent resolutions passed in the U.N, each meant to breathe fresh life into a stalled process to force recognition of basic truths. Yet peace has remained elusive and the conflict has been enlarged and spread like a cancer across borders. Populations other than the Palestinians are now suffering the results of Israeli aggression.
For instance, Lebanon, which, in 1948, accommodated the fleeing Palestinian refugees by the tens of thousands, has been ravaged by war and it has seen its lands invaded and occupied by Israel time and again. The Shab'ah Farms and other areas remain occupied by the Israelis to this day in direct violation of U.N. Resolution 1407. From the bloody conflict initiated by the invasions of 1978 and 1982 to the bombardment and invasion of 2006, the people of Lebanon have suffered greatly. This has given rise to Hezbollah and allows it to supplant the role of the legitimate government and seeks to further its own political agenda; even more, they do so while purporting to stand for Lebanon's beleaguered people and even Islam itself.
The numbers of the dead and displaced by war in Lebanon are staggering. Before the Taif Accord in 1989, more than 100,000 people had been killed in the fighting there, many of them civilians. Over 900,000 had lost their homes. The Israeli invasions of 1978 and 1982 killed more than 50,000 civilians and wounded more than 100,000.
In Lebanon, of course, foreign hands can clearly be seen manipulating the strings of this brutal tragedy. The 2006 attack on the Israelis and the capture of their soldiers was calculated for effect, and it had maximum effect. In response, an onslaught of widespread destruction and indescribable horror was unleashed by Israel that destroyed villages and towns, neighborhoods and hospitals, killing more that 1200 civilians and thousands more wounded: and whereas Hassan Nasrullah, the leader of Hezbollah, has publicly expressed his regret for launching his provocative action, the Israelis have not issued a single word of remorse. Once again, the people of Lebanon - many of them innocent children - paid the price with their lives for foreign-led ambitions in the region.
Hamas has watched and learned from the Lebanese model and followed in its footsteps, capitalizing on Israeli brutality and aggression to gain a prominent voice in representing the Palestinian people as the Palestinians are drawn deeper into the morass of violence and suffering which they have so long endured. Gaza is a land where there are no victors save the brutality of the Israeli war making machine, and the struggle between extremists on both sides is sadly measured in the blood of innocents. Two years ago, in only 22 days there were more than 1400 people killed in Gaza by the Israelis with another estimated 5300 wounded. Only a small portion of those killed - 236 - were combatants for Hamas. And the targets sought by the Israeli forces seldom had any military value. Nearly half of Gaza's clinics were damaged as well as 15 of the 27 hospitals located there. Hundreds of factories and thousands of homes were destroyed. Then, to add insult to injury, Israeli commandos stormed a peace flotilla of ships, this year that sought to bring food and medicine to the suffering people of Gaza who, for years, have been enduring an inhuman, illegal and immoral blockade. So widespread and indiscriminate has the killing of Palestinian civilians by Israeli forces become that the U.N.'s Goldstone Report characterized the events there as possibly falling into the category of "war crimes" or "crimes against humanity."
I highlight these tragedies relative to Hamas and Hezbollah not only to point a finger at the Israelis but also to show one of the most important yet overlooked aspects of the conflict, which is the dampening effect on extremism in general that a lasting peace would have in the region. If we address the desperation of the people of Gaza, restore to them the dignity accorded citizens of an independent Palestine, the appeal of violent resistance will wither. Remove the yoke of crushing poverty imposed by blockade; lift the occupation and the denial of self-determination, and the appeal of extremism wanes. With the removal of extremism comes the growing friendship with the West. We have seen the bonds of friendship with West strained where they should be strong, and we have witnessed serious mistakes that have lessened the West's credibility in the region; credibility that is not only vital to the peaceful resolution of the Palestinian and Israeli conflict, but is vital to the progressive international relations between regions that benefit all people. In other words, it is deeply in the West's interest to end this conflict as it will serve as a major victory in the war against terror, for much of what we call "terror" is able to find its recruits due to the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.
Since I am advocating that the West take a more assertive approach to ending the conflict, let me outline some of the principles that I believe should form the backbone of that approach. I do so by constructing my position by dismantling the position of the opponent. In this case, my opponent is the neoconservative philosophy in American politics.
It has been almost ten years since President George W. Bush took office, giving the American neoconservative philosophy- with its zeal for shaping the world through unilateral demands and military action – its days in the sun. The starkest example of the ascendancy of this group was the war in Iraq. After enormous cost in human lives and treasure, as well as the tattering of American ideals at home and respect abroad, President Obama has begun to bring this country's role in that debacle to an end, leading many Americans to believe that the neocon movement has died, the victim of its own failed, delusional ambitions. However, recent declarations by neocon thinkers regarding the current Palestinian-Israeli peace process show it to be very much alive and still pushing inhumane and aggressive policies. It is these policies, personified by neocon advisers, American conservatives, and Zionist extremists, that continually throw a wrench into the progress of peace. This recent election will give more fodder for these war mongers to pursue their favorite exercise, war-making. We must not only resist these dangerous policies if we want peace, but even those American advisers who do not consider themselves neoconservatives must realize that by not taking a strong enough stance against Israeli actions, they offer tacit submission to the neoconservative position - a position that has gotten us nowhere save into the bloody rut we now inhabit.
For a summation of this position, I turn to one of its top advocates, Robert Satloff, the Executive Director of the pro-Israeli Washington Institute for Near East Policy. In a Foreign Policy article entitled "Three Temptations on the Road to Mideast Peace," Mr. Satloff gives suggestions to President Obama on how he might conclude a successful peace deal. In sum, these suggestions are:
- Ignore Secretary of State Clinton's stance of "not one more brick" on the issue of settlements, which I prefer to call by their true name, colonies, let the Israelis begin to build again, and push the Palestinians to not "inflate the significance of settlement construction."
- "Withstand the pressures to intervene prematurely at the first sign of impasse" so that the two parties - especially the Palestinians - can make "the compromises a real agreement demands."
- Given that "Israel and the Palestinian Authority are less likely to take proverbial 'risks for peace' when an ascendant Iran is able to withstand US-led sanctions," Obama should "prevent Iran's march toward nuclear weapons capability" by "projecting strength and resolution on the Iran nuclear challenge," and while not specifically declared, this would seem to imply the use of force, which is the United States' "last repository of credibility."
Before exploring each of these suggestions and revealing them as fallacious, counter-productive and even dangerous, it's important to point out that they are par for the neocon course. They are an apologia for Israel's actions, a deprivation of all Palestinian bargaining positions, a denial of the injustices done against them, and an attempt to divert attention from the real issues via the Iranian bogeyman. And they would stand in the way of peace. On the issue of colonies, it is astonishing and insulting for anyone to suggest that the Palestinians simply ignore the fact that Israel is openly breaching its commitment to the road map by ending the moratorium on new colony building. Not only does this suggestion ignore the Palestinians' compliance with the road map (in the face of Israeli activities, such as incarcerating thousands of Palestinians, including pregnant women and children), but it attempts to downplay an issue that the Palestinians have repeatedly declared to be central. Why is the colony issue so central? Because it is the most glaring example of Israel's indifference to international law and its continued willingness to flagrantly sidestep agreements.
Let's look at the facts. In the first half of 2010, during the colony moratorium, the West Bank saw 603 new housing starts, 1,135 housing completions, and 3,009 active housing unit construction projects being carried out by the Israelis. How, one might ask, could Israel justify such actions? It does through flawed legal arguments that entirely misinterpret the British Mandate authority over Palestine and the UN Security Council Resolution 242. The Palestine Mandate states that "nothing should be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine," and the UNSC resolution 242 states that neither side should gain territory under the international legal principle of the "inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war." No nation in the world accepts Israel's spurious legal justifications for going against these agreements, so is it not unconscionable to ask the Palestinians to do so when it is they who suffer most directly as a result of them?
As the Reagan Plan stated as far back as September 1982, "The United States will not support the use of any additional land for the purpose of settlements during the transition period. Indeed, the immediate adoption of a settlements freeze by Israel, more than any other action, could create the confidence needed for wider participation in these talks. Further settlement activity is in no way necessary for the security of Israel and only diminishes the confidence of the Arabs that a final outcome can be fee and fairly negotiated." Asking the Palestinians to ignore ongoing colony construction is tantamount to asking them to accept subjugation from the start.
The second suggestion is that the United States restrain from making proposals in the course of peace talks. What, one might ask, are the American mediators to do other than to help bridge impasses? The neocon answer is simple - they are to force the Palestinians to make concessions and to preserve the Israelis from having to do so. This can be seen in the reason Mr. Satloff gives as to why American proposals have no place in the negotiations. They would, he says, "transform the diplomacy into a US-Israeli negotiation, relieving the Palestinians of having to engage in the business of bargaining." Why, exactly, would American proposals transform the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations into American-Israeli negotiations? Because the American proposals would justly make demands on Israel, and that is exactly what neocons are desperate to prevent.
Finally, Mr. Satloff's third suggestion, his most vaguely far-reaching and therefore his most dangerous, is that the US should do something (specifics withheld) to project "strength and resolution on the Iran nuclear challenge." Why is this important for the Israeli-Palestinian peace process? Because (apparently) Israelis and Palestinians will fail to respect America if Iran is able to gain nuclear weapons because America, having declared it will not allow this development, will be seen as weak. Not only does this show a lack of insight about what is at the heart of the Israeli- Palestinian problem, which predates the Iranian nuclear issue by many years, but it threatens to start a new conflict as a pretext for ending another (we've read this script before, i.e. in Iraq, and it does not have a happy ending). No one denies that a nuclear Iran is a major international danger, but claiming that the US must take military action against Iran to push forward the Israeli-Palestine peace process is to attempt to harvest apples by cutting down the tree.
Let us not allow the ideas of the neocons to crawl from their graves of failure, but let us instead take as our directive the Arab Peace Initiative set forth by King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, which calls for fair and mutual compromises and commitments by both parties. This means to act directly counter to these suggestions - to demand colony building cease immediately, to have the courage to push the parties toward compromises, and to stop using the Israeli-Palestinian issue as a pretext for attacking Iran. The last thing the world needs now is another neocon fantasy, predicated on threats rather than negotiation, force rather than diplomacy, and war rather than peace.
And now, by way of conclusion, I wish to summarize the position of Saudi Arabia toward the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, which is declared so excellently in the Arab Peace Initiative. My country has struggled again and again to stress to its many friends around the world, that Saudi Arabia stands against terrorists and extremists of any origin and we join America in tirelessly seeking to defeat those who would use violence to pursue political ends. Yet while Saudi Arabia goes about declaring this position and continually proving it in practice, we must sometimes ask ourselves - what about the Israelis? Where is the justice for those who suffer at the hands of Israel? Ought not the World in general and the West in particular, fight the continued occupation of Palestinian land by Israel as fervently as Saudi Arabia fights terrorism? Should not the clear barriers to peace represented by continuing colonization in the West Bank be vigorously opposed, and the existing - and illegal – colonies be dismantled? Shouldn't the World call upon the Israelis to "tear down the Apartheid Wall" just as vigorously as it screams against Islamic extremism?
As we in the Kingdom see it, the path to peace is clear. King Abdullah's forthright initiative of 2002 laid the groundwork for an end to hostilities: if the Israelis withdraw from occupied lands, including East Jerusalem, to their pre-June 4, 1967 boundaries and address the refugee situation through mutual agreement, Saudi Arabia and the Arab League and the Organization of the Islamic Conference will end all forms of hostilities and commence normal and peaceful relations with the State of Israel. The Quartet, charged by the U.N with seeking resolution to the conflict, should pursue this route on the road to peace. Until that happens, Saudi Arabia must do what it must - as the birthplace of Islam, as the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, and as the world's energy superpower and the de facto leader of the Arab and Muslim worlds. The Kingdom must hold itself to the highest standards of justice and law. And this is why it must refuse to directly or indirectly engage Israel until it ends its illegal occupation of the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and the Golan Heights as well as the still occupied territories in Lebanon. For us to take any steps toward any form of normalization with the Israeli State before these Arab lands have been returned to their rightful legitimate owners would undermine international law and turn a blind eye to immorality.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Saudi Arabia stands for peace, but we cannot stand alone. We need Israel's friends who should be the first in line, urging her to seek peace, instead of pushing her for more war. We need our friends in the West to recognize the importance of this opportunity to regain its stature in the Middle East by joining us in an effort to resolve the longstanding plight of the Palestinian people. The West has the ability to put out the flames of numerous regional fires by extinguishing the source of the blaze in the Middle East. By pressuring the Israelis to genuinely commit to a timetable for withdrawal from occupied lands, it will simultaneously defuse a host of lingering difficulties that the World – and the region at large – now faces.
Let us together seek the goal of all reasonable people and nations that abide by international law. Let us pursue the victory of reason over violence, of ideas over raw emotions. Let all of us come to an acceptance of global standards of behavior that recognize the rule of law over the rule of force, of negotiation over bloodshed, of right over might and let us meaningfully and substantively address those actions which stand in glaring opposition to those standards. And finally, let it be known that we will turn away from those who continue to seek violent upheaval but will extend our hands in friendship to those who seek true and just peace.
The road to peace has been long and difficult, but as Andrew Carnegie said, "Do not look for approval except for the consciousness of doing your best." Forging success out of the many failures in the Middle East requires a Palestinian state. Let us together do what is necessary to achieve this success, and may Allah bless us in our efforts.
(4) Warplanes for Saudi Arabia will have technology built in to prevent use against Israel
From: Stanley Young <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: 15.09.2010 01:08 PM
Subject: US prepares to approve $60bn arms deal with Saudi Arabia
I noticed this is NOT being reported at all, that I know of so far, in MSM of U.S.
Play the short video of the State Dept. spokesman, and you'll notice that he slips up at one point and says something abt. needing to make sure Israel (not Saudi Arabia) is protected!!
Yeah, I just watched it again, and it's at 0:31 on the clock. Fascinating; begs a lot of Q's, eh?
P.S. Sure looks like they're gearing up for major action. Q is when?
US prepares to approve $60bn arms deal with Saudi Arabia
Deal could be biggest in US history as fear of a nuclear Iran overrides concerns about human rights in Saudi Arabia
Ewen MacAskill in Washington
guardian.co.uk, Monday 13 September 2010 21.29 BST
As US Congress prepares to approve America's biggest ever arms deal, state department spokesman Philip J Crowley stresses that Washington's priority is stability in the Middle East.
The US Congress is poised to give its approval to the biggest arms deal in US history when it signs off on weapons sales to Saudi Arabia worth an estimated $60bn (£39bn).
The sale, under negotiation since 2007, is aimed mainly at bolstering Saudi defences against Iran, which the US suspects will achieve a nuclear weapons capability within the next few years. The transfer of advanced technology, mainly planes, is to provide Saudi Arabia with air superiority over Iran.
The Obama administration is due to send the deal to Congress in the next fortnight. The Senate and House then have 30 days to amend, cancel or approve the deal. If approved, the Obama administration can then take the final steps towards completing the deal.
Members of Congress have been notoriously difficult in regard to arms deals with Saudi Arabia over the last three decades, partly because of lobbying by Israel in the 1980s and 90s and partly as a reaction to the 9/11 attacks orchestrated by the Saudi-born al-Qaida leader, Osama bin Laden. They have also raised concerns over the lack of human rights and freedom for women in Saudi Arabia. Congress has amended and even blocked arms deals with the Saudis in the past.
But Washington-based analysts say such concerns will be overridden because of the greater worries about Iran.
A US defence official told Reuters today that the US and Saudi Arabia are discussing a package that includes 84 new F-15 fighter jets, upgrading another 70 of them as well as buying 72 Black Hawk helicopters built by Sikorsky Aircraft, a unit of United Technologies Corporation.
The two sides are also discussing a package for the kingdom's navy.
The Saudis have agreed to an initial $30bn in sales, with another $30bn still under discussion. The initial figure to be sent to Congress for review may be $30bn for approval this year.
The deal rivals the al-Yamamah deal between the UK and Saudi Arabia signed in the mid-1980s, one of the biggest in history, worth $66bn in revenue for BAE.
Michael Knights, the Lafer fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, who has written in detail about the deal, predicted today a relatively smooth ride from Congress: "The deal has a much better chance of being approved with limited or no modifications.
First, the preparation for the package has been extensive and prolonged, stretching back to 2007. This has ironed out many potential problems, including significant consultations with the Israelis.
"Second, concern about a nuclear Iran is at an all-time high in Washington, Tel Aviv and Riyadh. Third, much has changed in the defence market since the last major Congressional campaign to block or downgrade a major Saudi arms deal, the 1993 Saudi purchase of F-15s aircraft. Since then, US manufacturers have had to up their game to compete with top-tier European technologies that are provided without limitations." ...
Some of the weapons systems, in particular upgraded weapons systems, are specifically related to the threat posed by Iran. Details have been leaking out in the US media over the last few months, prompting angry denunciations from Tehran.
Israel, an even closer ally of the US than Saudi Arabia, has also expressed concerned over the transfer of advanced technology to Saudi Arabia.
Addressing Israeli concerns, advanced sensors on the new Saudi F-15s will have technology built in to prevent them being used against their Israeli equivalents. ...
Exclusive By Bill Dash
c. 2003 All Rights Reserved
A nightmarish US super weapon reportedly was employed by American ground forces during chaotic street fighting in Baghdad. The secret tank-mounted weapon was witnessed in all its frightening power by Majid al-Ghazali, a seasoned Iraqi infantryman who described the device and its gruesome effects as unlike anything he had ever encountered in his lengthy military service. The disturbing revelation is yet another piece of cinematic evidence brought back from postwar Iraq by intrepid filmmaker Patrick Dillon.
In the film, al-Ghazali, whose english is less than fluent, describes the weapon as reminiscent of a flame thrower, only immensely more powerful. It is unclear what principle the weapon is based on. Searching for a description, al-Ghazali said it appeared to be shooting concentrated lightning bolts rather than just ordinary flames. Drawing on his many years as a professional engineer, al-Ghazali speculates that radiation of some kind probably figures into the weapon's hideous capabilities. Like all men in Saddam's Iraq, al-Ghazali was compelled to serve in the Iraqi equivalent of the Army National Guard and fought in three wars over the past thirty-odd years. Via email, he told me he has seen virtually every type of conventional weapon employed in battle, and is well acquainted with their effects on people and machines, but nothing in his extensive combat experience prepared him for the shock of what he saw in Baghdad on April 12th.
On that date, al-Ghazali and his family sheltered in their house as a fierce street battle erupted in his neighborhood. In the midst of the fighting, he noticed that the Americans had called up an oddly configured tank. Then to his amazement the tank suddenly let loose a blinding stream of what seemed like fire and lightning, engulfing a large passenger bus and three automobiles. Within seconds the bus had become semi-molten, sagging "like a wet rag" as he put it. He said the bus rapidly melted under this withering blast, shrinking until it was a twisted blob about the dimensions of a VW bug. As if that were not bizarre enough, al-Ghazali explicitly describes seeing numerous human bodies shriveled to the size of newborn babies. By the time local street fighting ended that day, he estimates between 500 and 600 soldiers and civilians had been cooked alive as a result of the mysterious tank-mounted device.
In a city littered everywhere with burned-out civilian and military vehicles, US forces were abnormally scrupulous about immediately detailing bulldozers and shovel crews to the job of burying the grim wreckage. Nevertheless, telltale remnants remained as Dillon found when al-Ghazali later took him to the site. Dillon said they easily uncovered large puddles of resolidified metal and mounds of weird fibrous material that, al-Ghazali explained, were all that remained of the vehicles' tires. Dillon, who accumulated plenty of battlefield experience as a medic in Viet-Nam, and has since covered a number of wars from Somalia to Kosovo, told me that he has witnessed every kind of conventional ordnance that can be used on humans and vehicles. " I've seen a freaking smorgasbord of destruction in my life," he said, "flame-throwers, napalm, white phosphorous, thermite, you name it. I know of nothing short of an H-bomb that conceivably might cause a bus to instantly liquefy or that can flash broil a human body down to the size of an infant. God pity humanity if that thing is a preview of what's in store for the 21st century."
For Majid al-Ghazali, images of the terrifying weapon and its victims haunt his every day. In addition to his work as an engineer, he is also a highly accomplished classical violinist, occupying the first chair in the Baghdad Symphony. He is widely acknowledged as one of the preeminent violinists in the Middle East. Besides his family, one of his greatest joys is teaching at Baghdad's premier music conservatory. Unfortunately, the conservatory was utterly destroyed. Yet somehow, despite the war's horrors and its seemingly endless privations, he manages to maintain a remarkably hopeful outlook. He recently informed me that the Baghdad Symphony continues to exist and has been invited to perform in the United States in December.
Copyright ©2003 - Bill Dash
From Fred Gunn
Found this article from Cox News published on Thursday, August 15, 2002 and knew I had to send you this link:
It was truly terrifying reading the article on your newsite about Patrick Dillon's far reaching journalism into the war in Iraq. There's a true hero in my mind. The weapons described by Majid al-Ghazali would seem to me to fit into the electromagnetic pulse weapons category. And then, these weapons are mentioned in a New York Post article the day before the Cox News article appeared, and President Bush speaks of using these pulse weapons as a means to "disable Saddam (Hussein)'s entire command and control structure."
Super surge protectors are being designed that would possibly block the pulse of the weapon. I put the two together in my mind's eye and I saw the opening scene from the Terminator movie.
It had better be a brave new world, with governments beginning to wield these sorts of weapons into our battlefields now. Who knows where next.
The Cox News article goes on to say China, Great Britain and France are also experimenting with these arsenals. No mention of Russia, though. Interesting.
Super-Secret Microwave Weapons May Be Used In Iraq
By George Edmonson
Cox News Service
August 15, 2002
WASHINGTON -- An army may still travel on its stomach, but a vital point of attack these days is the brain -- the electronic brain.
With modern warfare so dependent on computers and communications devices, a weapon that renders them useless could be invaluable. And after decades of research, U.S. scientists and engineers may be close to fielding an effective technology known as high-powered microwave weapons.
At least, that is the latest buzz. Recent articles have speculated microwave weapons could be deployed if the United States invades Iraq. But some experts -- including Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld -- say considerable work remains.
"It's been this elegant promise for decades that never quite seems to happen," said John Alexander, author of "Future War: Non-Lethal Weapons in Twenty-First Century Warfare" and a retired Army colonel who directed non-lethal weapons development at Los Alamos National Laboratory. "The check's always in the mail."
The concept behind high-powered microwave weapons is simple. A burst of electromagnetic energy is created and directed at an enemy's electronics. The force burns them out much like a lightning strike can destroy home appliances.
Challenges, though, lie in a number of areas, according to several experts.
For example, delivering the weapons would likely be done by cruise missiles or unmanned aerial vehicles to help get close to the target. That requires making the weapons not only high powered, but also rugged and relatively small, which Air Force Col. Eileen Walling labeled "extremely challenging and technically difficult" in a paper she wrote in 2000 on the weapons.
Alexander explained another problem: unpredictability, even when everything goes right.
"Electrical components are really rather tricky," he said. "You can put the same amount of energy into 10 identical targets and you can destroy two of them, upset five of them and, in three of them, nothing happens."
High-powered microwave weapons are one component of a broader category known as directed energy weapons that includes lasers.
"When people are talking about high-powered microwave weapons, they're not talking about a single device like the stealth bomber," said John Pike, director of globalsecurity.org, a Washington-area policy organization seeking to reduce reliance on nuclear weapons. "Rather, they're talking about a physical principle and an effect which can be generated a number of different ways for a number of different purposes."
Most of the Defense Department's work on high-powered microwave weapons takes place at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque, N.M..
"We are looking at different sources and devices that can produce that microwave energy and propel it," said Rich Garcia, a spokesman for the project where nearly all of the work is classified.
Researchers also are exploring ways to block incoming high-powered microwave weapons. That will require something of a super surge protector, experts point out, because the blasts are so intense and brief they can escape detection.
The former Soviet Union once was deeply involved in exploring high-powered microwave weapons, but it is now thought Russia is no longer pursuing them. Other nations believed to be conducting research are China, Great Britain and France.
Earlier this month, the widely respected magazine Aviation Week & Space Technology printed an article stating that "an attack on Iraq is expected to see the first use of high-power microwave weapons..."
The New York Post, citing unnamed U.S. military officials, reported yesterday that a preliminary Iraq battle plan "outlined for President Bush last week calls for the most extensive use of electronic and psychological warfare in history -- including secret new electromagnetic pulse weapons to disable Saddam (Hussein)'s entire command and control structure."
August 13, 2002
WASHINGTON - New war plans being developed at the Pentagon call for massive use of exotic electronic and psychological-warfare technology to disrupt Saddam Hussein's communications and convince Iraqi soldiers to stay in their barracks, The Post has learned.
U.S. military officials said last night that a preliminary battle plan outlined for President Bush last week calls for the most extensive use of electronic and psychological warfare in history - including secret new electromagnetic pulse weapons to disable Saddam's entire command and control structure.
Although the plan also calls for the insertion of as many as 75,000 U.S. ground troops, Pentagon planners are hoping to avoid as much bloodshed as possible by defeating Saddam's leadership - not his entire army.
Officials stressed that the new plan, emerging after Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld rejected plans for a more traditional invasion of Iraq involving 250,000 troops, is still being refined and that Bush has not made a final decision on whether to attack Iraq.
The new plan was outlined for Bush by Gen. Tommy Franks, head of the Central Command.
Sources said that separating the Butcher of Baghdad from his military leaders by bombing his command structures and disabling Iraqi communications links would be an early priority.
With Saddam likely to go into hiding, psychological warfare units would bombard Iraqi airwaves with messages from special aircraft known as Commando Solo - warning troops to stay in their barracks or be slaughtered, military officials said.
The United States also plans to warn Iraqi commanders that if they use chemical or biological weapons, they will be hunted down and killed, sources said.
Defense sources said the battle plan also calls for the use secret electromagnetic pulse weapons to disable Saddam's communications.
Since the 1980s, the United States has been developing weapons that convert explosions into small electromagnetic pulses that play havoc with computer networks and electronic grids.
"Basically, this is a way of going after imprecisely located targets like bunkers under palaces. The idea is you use them to isolate the Iraqi leadership who are hiding in these bunkers," said John Pike of the think tank Globalsecurity.org.