Friday, August 31, 2007

A new wrinkle in the AIPAC spy case

Isn't this interesting. . .

The Jerusalem Post reports:

"A US district court Friday allowed the defense in the trial of two former AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) employees to ask Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to testify in the trial, after they claimed that Rice had leaked to the AIPAC staffers the same information that they had received from a former Pentagon employee and for which they are being prosecuted. . . In the hearing, attorney Abbe Lowell, representing former AIPAC staffer Steve Rosen, told the court that Rice's testimony is needed since she had met with Rosen in the past, while serving as National Security Adviser, and conveyed to him the same information that he and his colleague Keith Weissman later received from former Pentagon analyst Larry Franklin. "

[Franklin is now in prison after agreeing to cooperate with the government in the case. He worked for Bill Luti, the nut who worked for Douglas Feith's Office of Special Plans, the office where all that phony Iraq WMD intel was cooked up. Franklin was accussed of giving top secret intel not only to the two AIPAC employees but also Israeli diplomat Naor Gilon. ATimes]

Rosen and Weissman are now on trial for spying for Israel. They are alleged to have taken classified information having to do with U.S. Middle East policy and according to the indictment against them: [They] did willfully communicate, deliver and transmit that information directly and indirectly to a person or persons not entitled to receive it." [i.e. spied]

The defense for Rosen and Weissman now apparently want to get Condi Rice, Steven Hadley and Elliot Abrahms to testify to the fact that the classified info Rosen and Weissman gave to Israel and leaked to the media, in order to "advance [their] own personal foreign policy agenda and influence persons within and outside the United States government," was all approved by Rice and Co. and therefore not a crime.

AP reports:

"Defense attorneys suggested that top U.S. officials regularly used the lobbyists as a go-between as they crafted Middle East policy. If so, attorneys say, how are Rosen and Weissman supposed to know behavior expected of them one day is criminal the next? . . . Attorneys for Rosen and Weissman have argued that the Israeli interest group played an unofficial but sanctioned role in crafting foreign policy and that Rice and others can confirm it. " [I'd love to see that!]

Now, that's especially interesting. AIPAC had a hand in crafting our foreign policy? What a surprise! Naturally, "Federal prosecutors have said little in public about why Rice and others should not have to testify."

Of course, even going after AIPAC is an anti-semitic act, right? Must be.

"What is the connection between the Franklin/AIPAC Spy Scandal and the case of Jonathan Pollard", you might ask, as the writer for this piece at did. "Once again the US is hysterically trumpeting charges in the media against Jews, AIPAC and Israel, which upon critical examination, are simply not substantiated by any hard evidence."

Yes, no evidence at all. Just look at the indictments, nothing there. A tissue of lies. Just like what happened to Pollard.

The Jewish Virtual Library says:

"A subcommittee of the Knesset's Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee on Intelligence and Security Services concluded: "Beyond all doubt...the operational echelons (namely: the Scientific Liaison Unit headed by Rafael Eitan) decided to recruit and handle Pollard without any check or consultation with the political echelon or receiving its direct or indirect approval.' The Knesset committee took the government to task for not properly supervising the scientific unit."

So he did spy for Israel and they admit it, but he's not a traitor! Crazy.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

One more round for the war heroes.

Pretty much very week now Iraq-Vets, just off the plane, come into the bar I work at and they drink themselves silly. They just sit there all by themselves with that thousand-mile stare and at end of the night they always plead for just one more round. 'Please, ma'am,' they say, 'I just got back from Iraq three hours ago, can I please have one more?' Of course, as sympathetic to these poor bastards as we all are, there's just no way any bartender is going to serve someone to the point of passing out.

You look at the faces of these kids and it's always so shocking to how young they are. It's just a crime how we as a society can send mere boys and girls of 19 or 21 years-old off to another country to kill other boys and girls. And it's not like they just sort of get the idea on their own to go off and kill someone. Most people don't have the inclination to murder, other humans, despite what you see on TV.

Penny Coleman has a very interesting article at where she argues that:

"Prior to the Vietnam era . . . [military] training consisted largely of practicing military skills and learning to manage military equipment. It is only in the last half century that training has evolved into an entirely new phenomenon that makes use of the principles of operant conditioning to overcome what studies done over the last century have consistently demonstrated, namely, that healthy human beings have an inherent aversion to killing others of their own species. . . Today's recruits are intentionally and methodically subjected to a training regimen that is explicitly designed to turn them into reflexive killers. And it is very effective. It is also carefully concealed. . .

War Psychiatry, the army's textbook on combat trauma, notes that 'pseudospeciation, the ability of humans and some other primates to classify certain members of their own species as "other," can neutralize the threshold of inhibition so they can kill conspecifics.' Modern military training has developed carefully sequenced and choreographed elements of what many would call brainwashing to disconnect recruits from their civilian identities."

Smedley Butler, the "Marine's Marine" wrote decades ago in his famous book War is a Racket:

"Boys with a normal viewpoint were taken out of the fields and offices and factories and classrooms and put into the ranks. There they were remolded; they were made over; they were made to 'about face'; to regard murder as the order of the day. They were put shoulder to shoulder and, through mass psychology, they were entirely changed. We used them for a couple of years and trained them to think nothing at all of killing or of being killed. . .

Then, suddenly, we discharged them and told them to make another 'about face'! This time they had to do their own readjustment, sans [without] mass psychology, sans officers' aid and advice and sans nation-wide propaganda. We didn't need them any more. So we scattered them about without any 'three-minute' or 'Liberty Loan' speeches or parades. Many, too many, of these fine young boys are eventually destroyed, mentally, because they could not make that final 'about face' alone."

The same is all too true today. I know, that lonely soldier is at my bar begginf for just one more round.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Larry Criag, just looking for a good man.

Senator Larry Criag on the issues:

Voted YES on constitutional ban of same-sex marriage. (Jun 2006)
Voted NO on adding sexual orientation to definition of hate crimes. (Jun 2002)
Voted NO on expanding hate crimes to include sexual orientation. (Jun 2000)
Voted NO on setting aside 10% of highway funds for minorities & women. (Mar 1998)
Voted YES on ending special funding for minority & women-owned business. (Oct 1997)
Voted YES on prohibiting same-sex marriage. (Sep 1996)
Voted NO on prohibiting job discrimination by sexual orientation. (Sep 1996)

Rated 25% by the ACLU, indicating an anti-civil rights voting record. (Dec 2002)

Larry Criag, looking for love in all the wrong places:


"Senator Larry E. Criag pleaded guilty earlier this month to misdemeanor disorderly-conduct charges stemming from his June arrest by an undercover police officer in a men's restroom at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, a court spokeswoman and the senator's office said yesterday."

According to the police report a cop on the lewd and lascivious beat was sitting in a airport bathroom stall when a gray haired male walked in who "was later identified bny driver's licence as Larry E. Criag." Criag rolled his lugage up to the cop's satll and looked through the crack of the stall. According to the cop, "Criag would look down at his hands, 'fidget' with his fingers, and then look through the crack in my stall again. Criag would repeat this cycle about for about two minutes. I was able to see Criag's blue eyes as he looked into my stall. "

A few minutes later the person in the stall to the cop's left exited and Criag entered. He put his roler lugage in front of the stall door. At "1215 hours," according to the police report," tapped his right foot. I recongnized this as a signal used by persons wishing to engae in lewd conduct."

Criag began swiping his hand back and forth underneath the officier's stall and at about 1219 hours "I held my police identification in my right hand down by the floor so Criag could see it. Criag was led out of the bathroon and to a police interview area where he showed the police a business card showing he was a United States Senator. "What do you think about that?" Criag asked. Criag claimed he was simply trying to pick up a piece of paper off the bathroom floor.

"In the interview Criag either disagreed with me or 'didn't recall' the events as they happened." (Hey, just like Alberto Gonzales!)

Chaulk up another open GOP seat for the '08 elections!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Goodbye Gonzo! Wish we never knew ye.

The WaPo reports:

"Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales announced his resignation today, ending a controversial cabinet tenure that included clashes with Congress over the firing of nine U.S. attorneys and over the use of warrantless wiretaps in the war on terror."

And then there was also that little waterboarding problem; locking Americans up without due process; roughing up a sick man on his hospital bed and various other issues that tended to make Al Gonzales just slightly less popular than Michael Vick and a truckload of chemotheroputic infectious waste.

W, still on vacation, said of Gonzilla "[He is] a man of integrity, decency and principle." Uh huh.
That's Bush speak: To translate, just change the meaning of the sentence to the exact opposite meaning.

Bush really has his dander up about the bad treatment his good friend got from Washington.

"It's sad that we live in a time when a talented and honorable person like Alberto Gonzales is impeded from doing important work because his good name was dragged through the mud for political reasons.

Talented? Gonzales is pretty much the living embodiment of the Peter Principle (promoted to the level of his imcompetence). And as for having his name dragged through the mud; what about his shameful visits to the Senate and House Judiciary Committees over the past few months? How much mud did he drag the good name and integrity of the Department of Justice through? And when it comes to "political reasons," the main reason he's on the way out the door is precisely because just allowed the Rovian hordes to march right into his agency and pack the place with political hacks mascarading as professionals.

W.'s strong defense of another one of his Texas cronies, despite the almost universal opprobium Gonzales brought down around his own head, should have chasened Bush somewhat, but no; he's loyal to his friends, even if that loyalty winds up showering ignominy upon the office of the President of the United States.

Couldn't Congress impeach him on the grounds of his making our country look like a banana republic in the eyes of the rest of the world?

Harry Reid says, "This resignation is not the end of the story. Congress must get to the bottom of this mess and follow the facts where they lead, into the White House."

Right, but if W. sends Orin Hatch's name up to the Senate to replace Gonzo, he and the rest of them will fall over themselves to confirm one of their own. Now what's scarier than orin Hatch as AG?
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