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World News

9/12/05 - today
8/15/05 - 8/28/2005
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1/10/04 - 1/30/05




12/30/02 - 1/5/03













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    World News
9/5/05 - 9/11/2005

Sunday  9/11/2005

Overkill: Feared Blackwater Mercenaries Deploy in New Orleans  9/11/2005 Democracy Now: ""When they told me New Orleans, I said, 'What country is that in?,'" said one of the Blackwater men. He was wearing his company ID around his neck in a carrying case with the phrase "Operation Iraqi Freedom" printed on it. After bragging about how he drives around Iraq in a "State Department issued level 5, explosion proof BMW," he said he was "just trying to get back to Kirkuk (in the north of Iraq) where the real action is." Later we overheard him on his cell phone complaining that Blackwater was only paying $350 a day plus per diem. That is much less than the men make serving in more dangerous conditions in Iraq. Two men we spoke with said they plan on returning to Iraq in October. But, as one mercenary said, they've been told they could be in New Orleans for up to 6 months. "This is a trend," he told us. "You're going to see a lot more guys like us in these situations." If Blackwater's reputation and record in Iraq are any indication of the kind of "services" the company offers, the people of New Orleans have much to fear."

Attacks on democratic rights, breaching legal barriers: FEMA and Katrina: REX-84 Revisited The "Black Curtain" around FEMA's Operations  9/11/2005 Global Research: "In short, the corporate media would have us believe Brown is a clueless lawyer and former horse trader and FEMA an unresponsive federal bureaucratic leviathan wrapped up in red tape. But this does not explain the following: FEMA refused evacuation help from Amtrak; it turned away experienced fire fighters and first responders; it turned back Wal-Mart supply trucks; refused to allow the Red Cross to deliver food; blocked a 500-boat citizen flotilla from delivering aid; turned away generators and other equipment (see this page with links to news stories). In other words, FEMA went out of its way to deny aid and allow people to die from dehydration, starvation, and lack of medicine and medical help. In addition to denying aid, and thus killing an as of yet (and possibly forever) unknown number of people, FEMA is attempting to control media access to the worst natural disaster in American history (see Journalist Groups Protest FEMA Ban on Photos of Dead). Moreover, journalists and photographers have been assaulted by troops and had their notebooks and cameras confiscated (see The Eye of the Hurricane by Matthias Gebauer)."

Cover-up: toxic waters 'will make New Orleans unsafe for a decade'  9/11/2005 Independent, UK: "Toxic chemicals in the New Orleans flood waters will make the city unsafe for full human habitation for a decade, a US government official has told The Independent on Sunday. And, he added, the Bush administration is covering up the danger. In an exclusive interview, Hugh Kaufman, an expert on toxic waste and responses to environmental disasters at the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), said the way the polluted water was being pumped out was increasing the danger to health. The pollution was far worse than had been admitted, he said, because his agency was failing to take enough samples and was refusing to make public the results of those it had analysed. "Inept political hacks" running the clean-up will imperil the health of low-income migrant workers by getting them to do the work. His intervention came as President Bush's approval ratings fell below 40 per cent for the first time. Yesterday, Britain's Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott, turned the screw by criticising the US President's opposition to the Kyoto protocol on global warming. He compared New Orleans to island nations such as the Maldives, which are threatened by rising sea levels. Other US sources spelt out the extent of the danger from one of America's most polluted industrial areas, known locally as "Cancer Alley". "

Political Landscape May Shift on Displaced Voters  9/11/2005 LA Times: "Government officials and legal experts have begun wrestling with an intriguing question posed by the evacuation of New Orleans: What happens to the politics of a region when a significant part of the electorate suddenly disappears? The migration of hundreds of thousands of people from this urban center, many of them low-income and black, could have a dramatic effect on the political makeup of a state delicately balanced between the two major parties. If most of the evacuees choose not to return, Katrina's political legacy could be that it made Louisiana a more Republican state… Civil rights groups are focused on keeping track of Louisiana's displaced black voters and on ensuring that they can continue to vote in the districts they left behind until they make a decision to permanently resettle elsewhere. Ernest Johnson, head of the Louisiana NAACP, called Friday for Congress to pass emergency legislation to extend special protections of the Voting Rights Act that expire in 2007. The law is meant to ensure access to the polls for black voters. Johnson says the hurricane has potentially disenfranchised 1.5 million voters, many of them black."

Disasters Waiting to Happen  9/11/2005 NY Times: "The American Society of Civil Engineers, whose 137,000 members are involved in virtually every public works project undertaken in the United States, says that $1.6 trillion must be spent over the next five years to prevent further deterioration. Only $900 billion is now earmarked. Absent the additional spending, said Lawrence Roth, deputy executive director of the society, "every natural disaster is going to be more destructive than it needs to be." Infrastructure deteriorates in more than one way. There is lack of maintenance: roughly 13,000 highway fatalities each year, for example, are a result of inadequate maintenance of aging highways, the civil engineers say. And there is overuse: the levees in California, many of them built by farmers to convert marshes to farmland, now must be strengthened to prevent the destruction of newly built communities."

FEMA's Blocking Of Relief Efforts - An Amazing List  9/11/2005 Rense: [understandable in the context of FEMA as a continuity of government and control agency, not a disaster relief agency]

We had to kill our patients  9/11/2005 The Mail, UK: "Doctors working in hurricane-ravaged New Orleans killed critically ill patients rather than leaving them to die in agony as they evacuated hospitals, The Mail on Sunday can reveal. With gangs of rapists and looters rampaging through wards in the flooded city, senior doctors took the harrowing decision to give massive overdoses of morphine to those they believed could not make it out alive."

Vermont Guard find La. style of policing different  9/11/2005 Times Argus, VT: "Two deputies were in the cruiser and another three or four were loaded into the truck. The deputies asked the Guard members how things were going. When the soldiers said it was boring, one deputy said, "I guess we'll go make a run through there to see if we can stir some (stuff) up." "They're going in in squad size. It looks like they're loading up," one Guardsman said as the deputies pulled forward about 50 yards to get ready to make their patrol. The Guard prepared to spread out to catch anyone running from the deputies, but the next hour or so was quiet. "They said they went back in there and kicked everybody's door in," said Sgt. Francis Estey of Arlington. Staff Sgt. Eric Crammond said the police officers had a much harder attitude than the Guardsmen — understandable, given what they had gone through in the first days after the disaster. "They're talking the way we used to talk when we were 'in theater,'" he said, referring to the unit's recent deployment to Iraq. "They were in there the better part of an hour. (The residents) are pretty intimidated." ...Spc. Michael Shepard of Winooski noted another detail about the neighborhood. "All of the kids asked us if that's all we have for weapons," he said, hoisting his M-16 rifle and nodding towards the 9 mm pistol in a holster on his leg. "I was like, 'uh-oh.'" A number of the Guard in third platoon reported police officers carrying weapons as large as an AT-4 — an anti-tank weapon and a successor to the bazooka."

Blackwater Mercenaries: Coming Soon to Your Town  9/11/2005 UrukNet: "It is now obvious how martial law (not officially declared as such) will work in America in the wake of the devastation of New Orleans. Instead of federal troops or an influx of National Guard troops sent to “restore order” (the latter mandated in our now anachronistic Constitution; see Article 1, Section 8) and empowered to “suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions,” in Louisiana the state and federal governments have brazenly violated the Constitution by sending in Blackwater Security and other private goon squads. “Heavily armed paramilitary mercenaries from the Blackwater private security firm, infamous for their work in Iraq, are openly patrolling the streets of New Orleans,” write Jeremy Scahill and Daniela Crespo. “Some of the mercenaries say they have been ‘deputized’ by the Louisiana governor; indeed some are wearing gold Louisiana state law enforcement badges on their chests and Blackwater photo identification cards on their arms. They say they are on contract with the Department of Homeland Security and have been given the authority to use lethal force.” Soon after Katrina slammed into New Orleans, the media reported the presence of Blackwater goons (and have no doubt, Blackwater hires “special ops types from South Africa’s former apartheid regime,” according to James Ridgeway and others, people fairly characterized as murderous paramilitary goons)."

How United States Intervention in Venezuela Works, part 3 of 3 - Analysis of Four USAID Contracts with Republican and Democratic Party Foundations in Venezuela  9/11/2005 Venezuela Analysis 

Saturday  9/10/2005

topGerman plane with Katrina aid turned back from U.S.  9/10/2005 AP: [Add this to a long list of similar events.]

Beyond Incompetence  9/10/2005 Bellacio: [Many instances where the government was not just incompetent but actively sabotaged aid to Katrina victims]

Fearful Southerners buy firearms at torrid pace  9/10/2005 Chicago Tribune: "In any case, there is no shortage of homeowners putting up signs that read "Looters will be shot on sight." On the ground, there is mounting evidence to suggest firearms are a hot commodity. Take the neighborhood surrounding the Astrodome in Houston, where gun stores say they're selling at a brisk pace. "Basically, what we are seeing is people who are just afraid," said Valde Garcia, manager of Bailey's House of Guns near the Astrodome, where thousands of Katrina's victims have been housed temporarily."

LAPD Shut Down dead prez/KRS Benefit Show  9/10/2005 Davey D's Hip Hop News: "Fidel also dropped some knowledge about LAPD including the sorted history of police Chief William Bratton and the increased militarization of the police. He also spoke about how a lot of folks in the hood were being depicted as potential terrorists and how there was new laws on the books that allowed the President to keep one in prison indefinitely after he slapped them with a label ‘enemy combatant. Folks were all up in the place soaking everything up. By the time I arrived KRS had already ripped it big time… Well known DJs like Mark Luv of the Zulu Nation held it down on the ones and twos and Ras Kass took the stage and repped in a major way.. On deck after Ras Kass was dead prez and judging by the enthusiastic applause it was clear folks came to see them. So Ras is rocking his set when suddenly everything is thrown off by the loud noise of LA’s infamous ‘ghetto bird’ (police helicopter). At first, everyone thought the copter was just flying by, when suddenly it circled around and flashed its big floodlights on the peaceful crowd. It made a couple of more passes and then almost on cue, the entire crowd started chanting ‘@#%$ the Police’ and put their middle fingers up to the sky."

Police in Suburbs Blocked Evacuees, Witnesses Report  9/10/2005 NYT: "Arthur Lawson, chief of the Gretna, La., Police Department, confirmed that his officers, along with those from the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office and the Crescent City Connection Police, sealed the bridge. "There was no place for them to come on our side," Mr. Lawson said. He said that he had been asked by reporters about officers threatening victims with guns or shooting over their heads, but he said that he had not yet asked his officers about that. "As soon as things calm down, we will do an inquiry and find out what happened," he said."

Business Elite Ethnically Cleanse the Poor in New Orleans  9/10/2005 UrukNet: "In 1927, the so-called Great Mississippi Flood was used to ethnically cleanse African-Americans. “As the flood approached New Orleans, Louisiana 30 tons of dynamite were set off on the levee at Caernarvon, Louisiana,” explains Wikipedia. “This prevented New Orleans from experiencing serious damage but destroyed much of the marsh below the city and flooded all of St. Bernard Parish… During the disaster 700,000 people were displaced, including 330,000 African-Americans who were moved to 154 relief camps. Over 13,000 refugees near Greenville, Mississippi were gathered from area farms and evacuated to the crest of an unbroken levee, and stranded there for days without food or clean water, while boats arrived to evacuate white women and children. Many African-Americans were detained and forced to labor at gunpoint during flood relief efforts… The aftermath of the flood was one factor in the Great Migration of African-Americans to northern cities.”"

Friday  9/9/2005

topUS warns Nicaraguans against coup  9/9/2005 BBC: "Roger Noriega's warning comes amid a mounting crisis, which has seen Mr Bolanos locked in a struggle with his opponents in congress and the courts. Sandinistas and members of Mr Bolanos Liberal Party are trying to strip the president of his powers. The legislators have passed constitutional reforms limiting the president's power, despite a ruling by the Central American Court of Justice which declared them inapplicable."

Iraq hurt Katrina response, general says  9/9/2005 CNN: "The deployment of thousands of National Guard troops from Mississippi and Louisiana in Iraq when Hurricane Katrina struck hindered those states' initial storm response, military and civilian officials said Friday. Lt. Gen. Steven Blum, chief of the National Guard Bureau, said that "arguably" a day or so of response time was lost due to the absence of the Mississippi National Guard's 155th Infantry Brigade and Louisiana's 256th Infantry Brigade, each with thousands of troops in Iraq."


Rebuilding New Orleans for Big Oil  9/9/2005 Unknown News: "The port where New Orleans sits is one of the most important on the Gulf Coast, if not the most important. A huge amount of oil, gas, and other commerce moves through this port. On top of this, for years now, the Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) industry has been trying to get past strict environmental regulations to try to establish a LNG terminal somewhere along this coast, but has run into nothing but roadblocks. It's just too damn dangerous to have such a facility located anywhere near so many people. It has its own inherent dangers, being that there would be such a huge amount of explosive gas moving through the area, but it would also be certain to attract terrorists. But what if they could get rid of one of the biggest roadblocks, the people? Enter Hurricane Katrina, and you have the perfect opportunity. We haven't heard from Dick Cheney through this entire ordeal. Suddenly he emerges from his Wyoming hideaway, and he is being dispatched to New Orleans to oversee the reconstruction. How telling. How convenient. Just the man for the job, that is, if it involves furthering the interests of Big Oil/Gas rather than rebuilding for the little people, and poor black ones at that."

Dallas meeting plans reconstruction of New Orleans without poor African Americans  9/9/2005 Wayne Madsen Report: "According to well-informed New Orleans sources, New Orleans' wealthiest families, including those who are direct descendants of the French who settled New Orleans (not the Acadians [Cajuns] who were poor refugees from British tyranny in Nova Scotia) are meeting in Dallas today with Bush administration officials, New Orleans city officials, wealthy Texas oilmen, and bankers to plan for the reconstruction of New Orleans. These wealthy New Orleans residents live in the gated community of Audobon Place, a section of the city near the Garden District replete with personal helipads that still has running water and sewage and was only slightly affected by hurricane Katrina. It is now reportedly being patrolled by private Israeli security forces… The Dallas meeting focused on rebuilding and re-zoning New Orleans without the "criminal element," a code word for the city's poor African American community. These New Orleans residents have been scattered across the United States and are now under the control of FEMA. There is an understanding by the wealthy New Orleans elite that the poor will never be able to return."

Thursday  9/8/2005

topKatrina, Aftermath Galvanize Black America  9/8/2005 AP: "Some 71 percent of blacks say the disaster shows that racial inequality remains a major problem in America, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted Sept. 6-7 among 1,000 Americans; 56 percent of whites feel this was not a particularly important lesson. And while 66 percent of blacks think the government's response would have been faster if most of the victims had been white, 77 percent of whites disagreed. On Thursday, first lady Laura Bush said it was "disgusting" that critics blamed her husband's policies for the racial disparities between hurricane survivors."

America's Pretenses Washed Away  9/8/2005 Black Commentator: "Message boards all over the Internet are filled with posts from white people that are espousing hatred and rejoicing that Katrina caused such devastation and how they wished that it had killed all the (racial epithet) of New Orleans. Black America has been feeling the pain of the racist tone since the first reports of Black people being termed “looters” while white people were miraculously “finding” food. We are supposed to accept our lot in life and not complain because that’s the premise of this great nation. Black people, check your birth certificate to see if you are classified as three-fifths of a human being. Chances are, if you are poor and undereducated, it says you are because that’s the way the government is treating us."

New Orleans and the Demise of the Democrats  9/8/2005 Black Commentator: "The entire country is facing the plight of the people of New Orleans, coping with the dangers of Republican hell and Democratic high water. One party is proud of its viciousness while the other claims not to be vicious but proudly proclaims its willingness to shoot desperate refugees."

New Orleans Population has the Right of Return  9/8/2005 Black Commentator: "Displacement based on race is a form of genocide, as recognized under the Geneva Conventions. Destruction of a people’s culture, by official action or depraved inaction, is an offense against humanity, under international law. New Orleans – the whole city, and its people – is an indispensable component of African American culture and history. It is clear that the displaced people of New Orleans are being outsourced – to everywhere, and nowhere. They are not nowhere people. They are citizens of the United States, which is obligated to right the wrongs of the Bush regime, and it’s unnatural disaster. Charity is fine. Rights are better. The people of New Orleans have the Right to Return – on Uncle Sam’s tab."

Unbearable Crime on the Mississipi  9/8/2005 Black Commentator: "When I woke up today, the only thought that came to mind was Reverend Jesse Jackson's indignant cry, "This is the bottom of the slave ship we are looking at." ...Jesse's metaphor is also so apt in that you only had to listen to five minutes of reporting to know families had been separated in ways that could be irreparable – across states, even mothers from month-old babies...just evacuating babies without contact with the parents is such a nightmare, I hate even hearing about it. These are the people who were marginalized from the Internet as well; are they going to run to a computer site? ...Lastly, there is now what is called the Katrina Diaspora. This diaspora of people without resources puts the restoration of families and community at risk, and in the case of New Orleans' black community, probably makes that impossible. Even people who own land there are going to be in deep trouble trying to hold onto it when the real estate boondoggle gets in the courts. I'm afraid we'll be reading a lot of stupid crap about how they couldn't be found, taxes were owed, etc. as in times past throughout the South. That's why I hope Jesse gets someone to bring people like Congressman Bennie Thompson into the fold, as he is familiar with the commission that had to be set up in the Delta because people are still trying to get back land stolen in the 1930s. And the developers are probably asking for eminent domain to be declared even as I'm typing."

Louisiana senator: Thank you Canada  9/8/2005 CBC News: "A Louisiana state senator has praised a Canadian search and rescue team. Senator Walter Boasso said a Vancouver-based team reached St. Bernard parish five days before the U.S. army got there. "Fabulous, fabulous guys," Boasso said. "They started rolling with us and got in boats to save people ... We've got Canadian flags flying everywhere.""

Poll: Katrina Response Inadequate  9/8/2005 CBS: [the blame game may play well]

Military courage, love to save our people  9/8/2005 Final Call: On Sept. 3, New Black Panthers from Houston and Dallas under the direction of National Chairman Malik Zulu Shabazz, along with Houston Chairperson Krystal Muhammad and Dallas Chairperson Robert Williams, left the Houston Astrodome headed for New Orleans in two Black-owned chartered buses… Lynelle Washington, who gave her story directly to The Final Call afer she was rescued by them: “I have been here through it all. I never left my house in Gretna, La. It’s right across the bridge from New Orleans. I got completely flooded out. I have been trapped here the entire time. The cops came by on Saturday and they saw that I was alive. They gave me two bottles of water and kept going. I was scared to go out of my house. The boy down the street went into the Walgreen's across the street to get him something to eat and they (police) beat him. They thought he was the one who broke in, but he wasn’t, it was already broken into. I saw him, he went in after it was already broken into. “They keep changing up their stories. First, they got on the loudspeakers telling people to go into the places and get them something to eat, then when the people go in, they beat them. They beat up the boy and left him on the street. I went out after the police left and gave the boy one of the bottles of water they gave me. Thank God for these Brothers that came to get me.”"

Was racial bias behind U.S. government failure in New Orleans?  9/8/2005 Final Call: "Later, federal officials and Republicans began shifting the blame to local and state officials. They insisted that local and Louisiana state officials are the designated “first responders,” and they accused the Democratic governor and mayor of New Orleans of not sounding the alarm soon enough. However, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin had, in fact, made an urgent official request three days before the storm, according to Rep. Cummings, “for some kind of a special designation from FEMA, which would have had the buses taking people out, three days before the storm,” Mr. Cummings told The Final Call in an exclusive interview. “It sat on a desk and didn’t even get looked at until after the storm had hit. “This has got to be a wake-up call for us, as African American people, from another perspective,” he continued. “That is, if we believe that the government is going to always be there for our rescue, we need to re-think that. Because I don’t want us to be in a position where we’re not doing for self, when we can. And this is the perfect situation for that lesson to be learned.”"

The Militarization of New Orleans. From Victims to Vandals: Mass Media and New Orleans  9/8/2005 Global Research: "The mass media commentators and interviewers wholeheartedly co-operated in decriminalizing the state. The officials guilty of crimes against the humanity of poor and destitute citizens were transformed into humanitarian saviors. Not a single word of self-criticism from the officials and none suggested by the media moderators. The few dissident critical voices of the first few days were chastened and disappeared from the television screen. The US media was the only place in the world in which the guilty officials were exonerated… Given the government’s total abandonment of tens of thousands of poor, starving and homeless blacks, it was obvious that many people would scavenge for food and water. By deliberately linking the survivors with “looters” and “rapists”, public officials set the stage for the subsequent militarization and de-facto martial law – fertile terrain for the killing fields. The first reports that filtered out from (unembedded) eyewitness reports mentioned groups of Guardsmen beating the self-help survivors. Military reports cited the killing of several ‘snipers’. No doubt the Government’s first pre-occupation is to saturate the city with the military to prevent the survivors from organizing for justice and to channel all communications about the state of the city through officially approved sources. Even more significantly the military defines the nature of the situation as a problem of criminality and the repressive “solution” through maximum control and minimum aid."

Camps  9/8/2005 Simbaud: survey of detention camps

Interview about restrictions on New Orleans detainees ends abruptly  9/8/2005 Unknown News: [Has Utah created a concentration camp for Katrina survivors?]

FEMA - The Secret Government  9/8/2005 UrukNet: originally published in 1995 - "Some people have referred to it as the "secret government" of the United States. It is not an elected body, it does not involve itself in public disclosures, and it even has a quasi-secret budget in the billions of dollars. This government organization has more power than the President of the United States or the Congress, it has the power to suspend laws, move entire populations, arrest and detain citizens without a warrant and hold them without trial, it can seize property, food supplies, transportation systems, and can suspend the Constitution."

How United States Intervention Against Venezuela Works, part 2 of 3 - Use of a Private U.S. Corporate Structure to Disguise a Government Program  9/8/2005 Venezuela Analysis 

State Dept. drops Israel from Hurricane relief credits  9/8/2005 World Tribune: "The administration's response was said to have alarmed Israeli diplomats, concerned that their country was being marginalized in U.S. foreign policy. Officials said the Bush administration, preoccupied by Katrina, has delayed meetings to discuss Israel's request for $2.2 billion in military and civilian assistance in connection with the withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and northern West Bank. The administration has asked Congress for another $51.8 billion for recovery efforts."

Wednesday  9/7/2005

topDean: Race played a role in Katrina death toll  9/7/2005 AP: ""We must ... come to terms with the ugly truth that skin color, age and economics played a deadly role in who survived and who did not," Dean said. Dean said Americans have a moral responsibility to not ignore the devastating effects of damage caused by Hurricane Katrina when it struck the Gulf Coast. The former presidential candidate said the government will be judged on how it treats the old, the young and the poor. "People are poor in different parts of the country. They are not refugees. They are Americans," he said. Dean said that instead of considering proposed estate tax breaks, the Senate should channel the $760 billion savings into disaster relief funds."

Welcome to the Rockies, now get behind the fence!  9/7/2005 Blue Owl Six: "And then there is that report I have noted in recent days of the 1,000 evacuees flown to Roosevelt Roads naval base on Puerto Rico's eastern tip. What of them? I've still seen no reports, but I confirmed it with a Puerto Rican friend of mine. This is too surreal. As for forcing Americans into a fenced-in camp? I don't like it. Not one bit."

Why Do They Hate You? John Wayne and New Orleans Indians  9/7/2005 Counterpunch: "I kept warning others that they should not go out, even in taxis, because they would be in danger returning. I tried to explain why, to no avail. Sure enough, a young historian from Maine was shot and killed by a sniper in front of the Hyatt after returning from fun in the French Quarter. After that, the historians stayed inside until ready to go to the airport in buses. Now, New Orleans will be rebuilt as one big "urban renewal" project, destroying the remaining working class homes and apartments, a sort of Disneyland for tourists and the wealthy. It's been going in that direction for forty years, as have other cities like Manhattan and San Francisco. But, it may not be that easy with that insurgency which, hopefully, will not capitulate."

FEMA packed with W's pals  9/7/2005 NY Daily News: "The three top jobs at the Federal Emergency Management Agency under President Bush went to political cronies with no apparent experience coping with catastrophes, the Daily News has learned. Even if Bush were to fire embattled and suddenly invisible FEMA Director Michael Brown over his handling of Hurricane Katrina, the bureaucrat immediately below him is no disaster professional, either. While Brown ran horse shows in his last private-sector job, FEMA's No. 2 man, deputy director and chief of staff Patrick Rhode, was an advance man for the Bush-Cheney campaign and White House. He also did short stints at the Commerce Department and Small Business Administration."

Add it all up: News from New Orleans - What do you get? Genocide!  9/7/2005 SF Bay View: "“Reports are emanating from Iraqis who are working with the Americans, both at the Baghdad International airport and in the Green Zone, of a mutiny that occurred among the American soldiers against their officers,” reports. “Three days ago, one American soldier went into hysterics upon hearing of the death of three members of his family in New Orleans. Corporal Nick Lancer shouted: ‘This is the curse of Iraq. My family paid for my crimes in Iraq. Send us back to help our families. God damn you, Bush and Rumsfeld.’ “Matters escalated when an officer tried, by force, to calm Lancer down. Lancer was then joined by other soldiers who started to beat the officer. The fighting escalated when other officers tried to intervene in the melee and the soldiers began attacking and hitting them with their rifle butts. This included the beating of Iraqi senior army officers who attempted to help the American officers. “The soldiers were shouting: ‘You scoundrels. We will throw you out to the Resistance to kill you. It is because of you that we are getting killed here.’ At one point, one of the soldiers radioed other fellow soldiers, who were out on patrols, to stop their mission and to return quickly to join them.”

Prisoners abandoned in Orleans Parish Prison  9/7/2005 SF Bay View: "Ahmad told Maga, my friend, that he was LEFT IN ORLEANS PARISH PRISON, along with every other prisoner, when the hurricane hit and the flood waters rose. The prison guards and other staff left, evacuated the prison and left the inmates there to fend for themselves. Most of them were locked in their cells; the cell doors were stuck due to power outages. Ahmad tells of riots and total panic within the prison as it started filling with water. He says, “The whole prison is going to have to be rebuilt,” as the inmates literally tore the place apart, trying to escape any way they could. Ahmad went four days and nights locked in the prison WITHOUT ANY FOOD OR WATER."

Key aim of the Bush administration's takeover of the NOLA situation is to cut off press access  9/7/2005 Talking Point Memo: "Take a moment to note what's happening here: these are the marks of repressive government, which mixes inefficiency with authoritarianism. The crew that couldn't get key aid on the scene in time last week is coming in in force now. And one of the key missions appears to be cutting off public information about what's happening in the city. This is a domestic, natural disaster. Absent specific cases where members of the press would interfere or get in the way of some particular clean up operation, or perhaps demolition work, there is simply no reason why credentialed members of the press should not be able to cover everything that is happening in that city."

Three Days In Hell  9/7/2005 TPM Café: "One time, to amuse themselves, the soldiers threw bottles as hard as they could into the crowd, like in baseball. A woman was hit in the head. The Navy arrived and it was even worse: the soldiers did not stop yelling at us. From the bus that took us on Friday morning towards Dallas, we saw a cotton field outside the windows. The blacks joked: “Nothing has changed,” they told us."

Tuesday  9/6/2005

topI just got back from a FEMA Detainment Camp  9/6/2005 Above Top Secret: [in Oklahoma] "The occupants of the camp cannot leave the camp for any reason. If they leave the camp they may never return. They will be issued FEMA identification cards and "a sum of money" and they will remain within the camp for the next 5 months."

New Orleans during the disaster: Authorities vs. humanity  9/6/2005 EMS news: "The authors are paramedics from California who were attending the EMS conference in New Orleans… Unfortunately, our sinking feeling (along with the sinking City) was correct. Just as dusk set in, a Gretna Sheriff showed up, jumped out of his patrol vehicle, aimed his gun at our faces, screaming, "Get off the fucking freeway". A helicopter arrived and used the wind from its blades to blow away our flimsy structures. As we retreated, the sheriff loaded up his truck with our food and water. Once again, at gunpoint, we were forced off the freeway. All the law enforcement agencies appeared threatened when we congregated or congealed into groups of 20 or more. In every congregation of "victims" they saw "mob" or "riot". We felt safety in numbers. Our "we must stay together" was impossible because the agencies would force us into small atomized groups."

GREEKS BEARING GIFTS - Paul Krugman at the New York Times and Clinton FEMA Director James Lee Witt Leading America Into the Next Slaughter  9/6/2005 From the Wilderness: "Intelligent critics from both left and right have for years painstakingly documented FEMA’s paramount leadership role in Continuity of Government (COG) operations and planning. Better described, COG is what will happen if Congress is nuked, if a major catastrophe makes “normal” government operations impossible, or if there is major civil unrest (or total economic collapse). Much of FEMA’s infrastructure is really dedicated to this task and not to disaster relief. The COG function and authority has been greatly expanded since 9/11. At FTW we have written about FEMA many times and discussed it at length in my book Crossing The Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil. There is no shortage of verifiable government records confirming all this including about two score Executive Orders, The Patriot Act, The Homeland Security Bill, and a couple of pieces of legislation having to do with biological warfare enacted in the post-9/11 climate. COG work was initially begun way back in the late 1970s, and involved early input from the likes of Iran-Contra criminal Oliver North. That’s where FEMA actually came from. If this thinking is not curtailed, then as the economic collapse of the United States becomes ever harder to conceal, FEMA will have been given a green light to impose the most draconian and heartless of measures in our country. FEMA will have the ability to divide the US up into ten autonomous regions, independently governed. Denver will be key to that decentralization and I note with irony that the CIA recently announced it was moving its National Resources (formerly Domestic Operations) Division to Denver (Washington Post, May 5, 2005) . FEMA will have the authority to confiscate any private property, food, medicine, personal vehicles, water supplies and even to impress citizens into forced labor and relocation as needed. FEMA will be able to override all local governments in a declared national emergency, quarantine neighborhoods and compel people to receive untested (for efficacy) vaccinations of drugs which may be dangerous (remember the smallpox vaccines?) and which will only enrich the pharmaceutical companies. FEMA will have the authority to confiscate firearms and gold held by private individuals. The government records proving what I say here are available in abundance and have been widely circulated over the internet for years. The little that remains of our Bill of Rights will simply cease to exist with a Code Red terror alert or another Katrina. And global warming makes another Katrina somewhere inevitable."

Navy Pilots Who Rescued Victims Are Reprimanded  9/6/2005 NYT 

US Democrats Seek Increased Scrutiny of Roberts  9/6/2005 NYT 

Hurricanes thriving on global warming  9/6/2005 The Register: "In a paper appearing in the online edition of the journal Nature Kerry Emmanuel, professor of meteorology in MIT's Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, writes: "My results suggest that future warming may lead to an upward trend in [hurricanes'] destructive potential, and - taking into account an increasing coastal population - a substantial increase in hurricane-related losses in the 21st century." Emanuel analysed data from tropical cyclones dating back to the middle of the last century, tracking the amount of energy released by each storm, the duration of the storm and its top windspeed. He found that since the 1970's, the storms have become more energetic, around half as fast again, and last on average 50 per cent longer. The results are broadly in line with computer simulations of the impact of climate change on hurricane intensity. The increase has also happened in parallel with an increase in the average surface temperature of the world's oceans. Some of this temperature increase can be ascribed to global warming, Emanuel says."

How United States Intervention Against Venezuela Works, part 1 of 3 - Summary, CIA Electoral Interventions, and Nicaragua as a Model for Venezuela  9/6/2005 Venezuela Analysis: by Philip Agee

Real Heroes and Sheroes of New Orleans  9/6/2005 Znet: "As we approached the bridge, armed sheriffs formed a line across the foot of the bridge. Before we were close enough to speak, they began firing their weapons over our heads. This sent the crowd fleeing in various directions. As the crowd scattered and dissipated, a few of us inched forward and managed to engage some of the sheriffs in conversation. We told them of our conversation with the police commander and the commander’s assurances. The sheriffs informed us that there were no buses waiting. The commander had lied to us to get us to move. We questioned why we couldn’t cross the bridge anyway, especially as there was little traffic on the six-lane highway. They responded that the West Bank was not going to become New Orleans, and there would be no Superdomes in their city. These were code words for: if you are poor and Black, you are not crossing the Mississippi River, and you are not getting out of New Orleans."

Sucker's Bets for the New Century The U.S. after Katrina  9/6/2005 Znet: "Our rulers have insisted by both word and deed that the laws of physics and chemistry do not apply to us. That delusion will now start to vanish. Katrina marks Year One of our new calendar, the start of an age in which the physical world has flipped from sure and secure to volatile and unhinged. New Orleans doesn't look like the America we've lived in. But it very much resembles the planet we will inhabit the rest of our lives."

Monday  9/5/2005

topMayor ready for armed standoff with FEMA  9/5/2005 "Ben Morris, Slidell mayor: We are still hampered by some of the most stupid, idiotic regulations by FEMA. They have turned away generators, we've heard that they've gone around seizing equipment from our contractors. If they do so, they'd better be armed because I'll be damned if I'm going to let them deprive our citizens. I'm pissed off, and tired of this horse$#@@.""

The Silence of the Scams: Psychological Resistance to Facing Election Fraud - Diane Perlman, Ph.D., Licensed Clinical Psychologist  9/5/2005 Commonweal: published 4/20/05, excellent summary with good links.

Why FEMA turned away help  9/5/2005 Daily Kos: FEMA's "reason" -- they wouldn't let anyone in "until the National Guard has secured the city."

Hurricane Katrina: Black America's 9/11?  9/5/2005 Different Kitchen: good links

Federal agency 'slow' to accept business help  9/5/2005 Financial Times 

Venezuela's Citgo sets up hurricane relief centers  9/5/2005 KLFY, LA 

Why FEMA Was Missing in Action - Most of the agency's preparedness budget and focus are related to terrorism, not disasters.  9/5/2005 LA Times 

The Cavalry can't get past FEMA  9/5/2005 Meet the Press: when this is played on network TV, they leave out the part about FEMA: "We had Wal-mart deliver three trucks of water. Trailer trucks of water. Fema turned them back, said we didn't need them. This was a week go. We had 1,000 gallons of diesel fuel on a coast guard vessel docked in my parish. The coast guard said come get the fuel right way. When we got there with our trucks, they got a word, FEMA says don't give you the fuel. Yesterday, yesterday, fema comes in and cuts all our emergency communications lines. They cut them without notice. Our sheriff, Harry Lee, goes back in. he reconnects the line. He posts armed guards said no one is getting near these lines."

'When you look at who is left behind, it is very disturbing to me.'  9/5/2005 Negrophile: good links

Five dead 'were army workers'  9/5/2005 The Australian: "At least five people shot dead by police as they walked across a New Orleans bridge yesterday were contractors working for the US Defence department, according to a report by The Associated Press."

’US Troops mutiny in Iraq’  9/5/2005 Wayne Madsen Report: "WMR has learned that the US embassy in Baghdad is checking into reports that U.S. troops in Iraq, including National Guardsmen, Army and Marine Corps Reserves, and regular military troops from Louisiana and Mississippi, have mutinied against their officers and are demanding to be immediately sent back home to help their families. It is not known whether the reported mutinies involve physical violence. The reports of rebellions among U.S. troops are filtering out of the Green Zone and at Baghdad International Airport from Iraqis who are working alongside their American counterparts at both locations."

"There is one safeguard known generally to the wise, which is an advantage and security to all, but especially to Democracies as against despots: suspicion." -- Demosthenes


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