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High Water Everywhere: Court Ruling Won’t Stem the Terror War Flood

The recent Supreme Court decision restoring habeas corpus rights for Terror War captives in Guantanamo Bay is a welcome development, of course. It is a stern rebuke to a key provision of the odious Military Commissions Act (MCA), which officially surrendered American liberty to presidential tyranny. But this sinister and shameful law  still remains in force; what’s more, the Supreme Court ruling does not address the Act’s core principle: the president’s arbitrary power to declare anyone an “enemy combatant” and dispose of them as he pleases – even killing them. Thus the

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Disassociative Disorder: Pushing Back Against AP’s Heavy Hand

As usual, our own webmaster and co-founder, Rich Kastelein (“il miglior fabbro“), has gotten way out in front on an important issue, setting up – in a matter of hours – a new website dedicated to the boycott of AP. The news service has trained its legal guns on bloggers who commit the shameless crime of, er, quoting AP stories, thereby giving the organization literally priceless recognition and publicity reaching millions of readers every day. AP seems to think that the newspapers, networks and other venues who desperately need the vast range

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Chronicle of a Craze Foretold: A History of Hope and Hype

A young, fresh-faced candidate, with a feisty, savvy wife, takes the political world by storm. He is highly intelligent, remarkably articulate, in sharp and ready command of the issues, with a winning charm and the common touch — in stark contrast to the aging, bumbling, cantankerous dullard he faces in the election. He offers hope and change, a whole new paradigm, a reinvention of politics as usual. He will take on the vested interests, the lobbyists, the tired ideas and rampant corruption of the Establishment. He will build a new international consensus, restoring America’s tarnished

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Written on the Body: The Reality of War

The war in Iraq is of course a political issue, both domestically and internationally, and so it is natural that much of the discussion about the war centers on its various political ramifications. But in these heated debates on policy, strategy, funding, etc., there is always a danger of losing sight of the most overwhelmingly important aspect of the conflict: its effects on actual human beings, the suffering it imposes on our fellow creatures. The reality of war is written on the bodies – and seared into the anguished psyches – of the individuals who experience it.

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“Good War” Blues: Obama’s Plan for Escalation in the ‘Stans

This week’s border incident — in which a U.S. attack killed at least 10 Pakistani soldiers — has refocused attention on Barack Obama’s long-standing promise to take the War on Terror to Pakistan; or as he puts it, getting “on to the right battlefield in Afghanistan and Pakistan.” In other words, Obama wants to expand the “good war” in Afghanistan by withdrawing “all combat troops” from Iraq (while leaving behind an unspecified number there to “fight al Qaeda” — how non-combat troops are supposed to fight anybody is not clear; perhaps the gay-bashing,

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Foreign Policy and Military Procurement in Perspective

And now, a few words on foreign policy and military procurement from a prominent American currently visiting Europe (Vienna, June 10): We heartily endorse this analysis, especially this passage:And I hope that you dieAnd your death’ll come soonI will follow your casketIn the pale afternoonAnd I’ll watch while you’re loweredDown to your deathbedAnd I’ll stand over your grave‘Til I’m sure that you’re dead

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Ending Your Surrender: Moral Agency and the War Machine

Arthur Silber uncovers and examines one of the fundamental dynamics of political behavior — relevant in any time and place, but especially so in the overheated atmosphere of the current U.S. presidential campaign. Taking as his theme the strange lack of urgency that afflicts the “progressive” movement in the face of the overwhelming and ever more imminent dangers of an American attack on Iran, Silber ponders “why most people [won’t] fight” to stop this impending act of mass murder. This leads him on to that deeper dynamic: the individual’s delegation of his or her

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Borderline Case: U.S. Attacks Pakistan Military

(UPDATED BELOW) OK, maybe I was wrong — maybe Pakistan is not going to have to wait to have its turn as a Terror War target.Yesterday I noted the RAND Corporation’s latest Pentagon-funded analysis, which called for military action in Pakistan’s border country, where Taliban forces are launching strikes into Afghanistan with, RAND says, the direct help of “Pakistani intelligence agents and [government-sponsored] paramilitary forces.” Clearly, a casus belli was being prepared for an expansion of the “War on Terror” into Pakistan, in part to try to salvage the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan. (And partly, well, just because Pakistan is

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The Invisibles: FEMA Shafts Katrina Refugees Again

In this televised segment, CNN reports that FEMA has given away $85 million in essential household items intended for victims of Hurricane Katrina. Although thousands of refugees from the storm are still languishing in trailers, tents, temporary housing — and on the streets — FEMA declared that the emergency was over, and handed over vast warehouses of goods to other federal agencies, state governments, post offices, etc. None of it went to Katrina survivors.

In a civilized country, this would be a major scandal. Official heads would

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An Inconvenient Truth: Cyber-Thugs Take Down Kucinich Site

Just hours after Rep. Dennis Kucinich introduced 35 Articles of Impeachment against President George W. Bush, the congressman’s website was taken down in what his office called “circumstances that can best be described as suspicious.” The site was the primary outlet for citizens to find the 65 pages of thorough documentation in support of Kucinich’s charges. The site was off-line for most of the day; long enough to shut it down for the current news cycle — which barely paid any attention to the impeachment filing anyway: five paragraphs (of the

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