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    World News
4/21/03 - 4/27/03

Sunday  4/27/03

Four U.S. Troops Hurt in Baghdad Ambush  4/27/03 AP 

Libel award against Anti-Defamation League upheld  4/27/03 AP: "A $9.75 million libel award against the Anti-Defamation League for publicly calling an Evergreen couple anti-Semitic was upheld Tuesday by a federal appeals court."

Revealed: How the road to war was paved with lies - Intelligence agencies accuse Bush and Blair of distorting and fabricating evidence in rush to war  4/27/03 Independent, UK: "A high-level UK source said last night that intelligence agencies on both sides of the Atlantic were furious that briefings they gave political leaders were distorted in the rush to war with Iraq. "They ignored intelligence assessments which said Iraq was not a threat," the source said. Quoting an editorial in a Middle East newspaper which said, "Washington has to prove its case. If it does not, the world will for ever believe that it paved the road to war with lies", he added: "You can draw your own conclusions." "

The Boss Makes A Peep For The Dixie Chicks  4/27/03 Newsday: "The Boss on Tuesday posted a brief statement on his Web site,, supporting the Dixie Chicks, whose anti-war comments have led radio stations to ban their songs. "To me, they're terrific American artists expressing American values by using their American right to free speech," Springsteen writes on the Web site. "For them to be banished wholesale from radio stations, and even entire radio networks, for speaking out is un-American." "

MP may be tried as traitor  4/27/03 Observer, UK: "The Observer can reveal that the Director of Public Prosecutions is considering pursuing the Glasgow politician for comments during the Iraq war when he called on British troops not to fight. In an interview with Abu Dhabi TV during the Iraq conflict, Galloway said: 'The best thing British troops can do is to refuse to obey illegal orders.' Lawyers for service personnel claim his call for soldiers to dis obey what he called 'illegal orders' amount to a breach of the Incitement to Disaffection Act 1934. The maximum penalty is two years in jail."

Dozens die in US arms dump attack  4/27/03 Scotsman: "Some residents, furious at the proximity of the arms dump to houses, fired on US troops trying to treat the injured. A number of American soldiers were wounded in the chaos in Zaafaraniya, a suburb on the southern edge of the Iraqi capital, and US forces had to retreat."

Dozens die in US arms dump attack  4/27/03 Scotsman, UK: the US papers report far fewer deaths, as is their custom - "Resident Tamir Kalaal said 14 of his relatives, including his father, brother and wife, were killed when a rocket destroyed his home. "I am the only one that survived. All I have left is her," he said, sobbing and pointing to his one-month-old daughter. "Those Americans did this." he said, shaking his finger in anger."

Was Tariq Aziz the coalition's mole?  4/27/03 Telegraph, UK 

France briefed Iraq on war: report  4/27/03 The News, Australia: "FRANCE gave Saddam Hussein's regime regular reports on its dealings with US officials, The Sunday Times reported, quoting files it had found in the wreckage of the Iraqi foreign ministry. The conservative British weekly said the information kept Saddam abreast of every development in US planning and may have helped him to prepare for war."

Saturday  4/26/03

topReason for War?  4/26/03 ABC News: "Senior officials decided that unless action was taken, the Middle East would continue to be a breeding ground for terrorists. Officials feared that young Arabs, angry about their lives and without hope, would always looking for someone to hate — and that someone would always be Israel and the United States. Europeans thought the solution was to get a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians. But American officials felt a Middle East peace agreement would only be part of the solution. The Bush administration felt that a new start was needed in the Middle East and that Iraq was the place to show that it is democracy — not terrorism — that offers hope." -- just like in the Banana Republic of Florida?

The Mumia Case, In True Colors  4/26/03 Counterpunch 

Rumsfeld's rejection of Islamic state angers Shias  4/26/03 Independent, UK: "Members of the huge Shia crowd gathered for Friday prayers were quick to spot the contradiction in his position. "I thought the Americans said they wanted a democracy in Iraq," said Kassem al-Sa'adi, a 41-year-old merchant. "If it is a democracy, why are they allowed to make the rules?" "

Marines give self-elected governor the boot - U.S. says cleric made an unwelcome power grab  4/26/03 LA Times 

Rival Protesters Clash at Cuba's Venezuela Embassy  4/26/03 Reuters 

We won't stop in Iraq - Bush aide  4/26/03 Scotsman, UK: "PENTAGON adviser Richard Perle, a key architect of the US-led drive to topple Saddam Hussein, told a French newspaper that Washington had not run out of countries to target as part of the war against terrorism."

US draws sword of trade retribution  4/26/03 Straits Times, Singapore: "Support us on security issues and we will back you on trade. Go against us, and your trade relations with the United States will suffer. That was the message coming out of Washington on Thursday, with Singapore cited by US Secretary of State Colin Powell as a 'good friend' whose interests would be tended to in view of its firm support during the Iraq war." - those who remember history, not common among Americans, know that trade wars helped worsen the Great Depression.

UK soldiers to be tested for toxic exposure  4/26/03 Sydney Morning Herald 

Friday  4/25/03

topSunni faithful vow jihad if US doesn't withdraw soon  4/25/03 AFP: "But they're wrong to believe they'll succeed and that we'll stay silent. We were waiting for a fatwa (religious decree) from our ulemas to fight back," he warned. "They don't respect anything, not our land, not our people. They even shelled this mosque," said Ala Hussein. "We're keeping quiet just because our ulemas have asked us to."

Say It Slowly: It Was About Oil  4/25/03 Alternet 

South casts doubts on North Korea's nuclear claims  4/25/03 AP 

Leaked document exposes pro-Israel lobby's manipulation of US public  4/25/03 Electronic Intifada 

Clerics take charge as generals dither  4/25/03 Financial Times: "Major Bozzo was clearly unaware of the new order taking root in Sadr city and in other neighbourhoods populated by Iraq's Shia majority."

'Dixie sluts' fight on with naked defiance  4/25/03 Guardian, UK: Everyone keeps forgetting the Dixie Chicks are still selling #1, according to Billboard, top industry source.

Tarik Aziz: Christian outsider in Saddam's inner circle  4/25/03 Guardian, UK 

Afghan Muhahideen Attack New Military Base, Seven US Soldiers Dead  4/25/03 Jihad Unspun 

News From The Arab Mujahideen Inside Iraq  4/25/03 Jihad Unspun 

Diplomats puzzled by claim migrants use Haiti to enter U.S.  4/25/03 Miami Herald: "U.S. Rep. Kendrick Meek, D-Miami, who is on the House Homeland Security Committee, said he has not heard any evidence, testimony or briefing from the CIA or FBI indicating Haiti harbors or promotes terrorist groups or activities. ''This is outright discrimination and racism by this Bush administration. There is justice in America for everybody but Haitians,'' Meek said."

Racial Bias in Executions Cited as Amnesty International Calls for Moratorium  4/25/03 Republicons 

White Quits as U.S. Army Secretary  4/25/03 Reuters: "The civilian who oversees the U.S. Army, Thomas White, has submitted his resignation, the Defense Department said on Friday, after controversy over his role in the failed energy trader Enron Corp. and support for an artillery system killed by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld."

Occupation officials warn against Islamic state  4/25/03 Sydney Morning Herald: "Coalition administrators in Iraq have signalled that they will not accept moves by sections of the country's majority Shiite population to create an Islamic state as the United States continues to round up senior members of Saddam Hussein's regime."

Thursday  4/24/03

topAshcroft Rules on Immigrants' Detention  4/24/03 AP: "Illegal immigrants could be held indefinitely without bond if their cases present national security concerns, under a decision by Attorney General John Ashcroft." - unless they are Cubans, then they will be released, especially of they are hijackers and terrorists.

Top US State department official calls Gingrich an "idiot"  4/24/03 AP 

On BillBoard, Dixie Chicks Have the Top Album Two Weeks in a Row 4/26  4/24/03 Billboard: punish them some more!

Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela  4/24/03 Granma 

Defiant, Paris rejects warning by Powell  4/24/03 IHT: "Jack Lang, a former culture minister, called the possibility of U.S. sanctions ‘‘scandalous.’’ ‘‘The only government that might deserve sanctions,’’ he said, ‘‘is the Bush government, which gravely violated international legality by organizing a military expedition without Security Council authorization.’’ "

Taliban Attack Kills Nine Afghan Militia  4/24/03 Jihad Unspun: "According to Mujahid, the Taliban captured the district headquarters Wednesday morning after overcoming resistance from its defenders. He claimed Mohammad Nawab, the uloswal (district head) of Deh-i-Chopan, was seized along with his subordinates and bodyguards. He said the Taliban were holding the eight men at an undisclosed location." The Taliban is on schedule.



BBC Chief Attacks U.S. Media War Coverage  4/24/03 Reuters 

Bush: Chirac Not Coming to Ranch Any Time Soon  4/24/03 Reuters 

The Turks Enter Iraq - A Turkish Special Forces team is caught by U.S. troops in Kurdistan  4/24/03 Time, US: "These [Turkish] forces are tied in to Turkoman groups in the city," says Col Mayville. The 173rd Airborne commanders suspect an amalgam of local Turkoman parties under the banner of the Iraqi Turkoman Front (ITF) were to be used by the covert team to wreak havoc. "In this first convoy was real aid. They'd do this two or three times then money or weapons would have started flowing in. We suspect their role was to strongarm or discipline the members of the ITF. What they're doing is crystallizing the ITF along the Turkish agenda," says Col. Mayville."

Wednesday  4/23/03

topObasanjo wins but opposition and monitors slam Nigerian poll  4/23/03 AFP 

Shiites pour into holy Iraqi city; France proposes suspension of sanctions  4/23/03 AFP 

Robert Fisk: Looking Beyond War  4/23/03 Alternet: "Goodman: Well, I wanted to ask you about - you might have heard about Judith Miller's report in the New York Times, saying a former Iraqi scientist has told a US military team that Iraq destroyed chemical weapons and biological warfare equipment only days before the war began and also said Iraq secretly sent unconventional weapons and technology to Syria starting in the 80's and that more recently... Fisk (overlapping): How very fortunate that that special report should come out now. Listen, every time I read Judith Miller in the New York Times, I nod sagely and smile. That's all I'm going to say to you, Amy. I'm sorry. Don't ask me to even comment upon it. It's not a serious issue."

US-French relations on ice  4/23/03 BBC: "At a popular level, displeasure with France expressed by the US Government could help individual boycotts of French products and companies and encourage petty anti-French manifestations such as the renaming of "French fries" as "Freedom fries." "

Iran Embeds Badr troops in Iraq’s Shiite centers, Races US for control  4/23/03 Debka, Israel: "The US-UK military command under US General Tommy Franks appears calm in the face of this potential. Troops of the US 82nd Airborne Division are watching over security from a distance, mainly keeping an eye on the 70-km long pilgrimage route between Karbala and Najef. However, DEBKAfile’s military sources have discovered that coalition forces deployed between Basra and Baghdad have been quietly placed on the ready, in case of trouble erupting on Wednesday. Washington has also forwarded a grave caution to Tehran with a demand to withdraw the Badr Brigades troops from Baquba and Karbala and keep them out of Baghdad. How the American forces stand up to these Iranian and pro-Iranian provocations among the Shiite pilgrims in the latter part of this week will strongly affect the outcome of the developing US-Tehran standoff; it will even shape Washington’s posture on Iran, Syria and the militant Shiite Hizballah’s home base in Lebanon."

Washington to Syria: Hand over Saddam’s WMD First  4/23/03 Debka, Israel: "Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and other Arab emissaries, diplomatic and covert, who called on the Syrian president on Sunday laid stress on the first of the three demands as paramount. They warned him that Bush and his team will not rest as long as Syria withholds the evidence to show the world that America fought a just war against Iraq. The evidence that Saddam developed weapons of mass destruction is hidden in Syria. Washington may hold back a few days but, ultimately, Assad will not be allowed to dictate the way the war ends by denying the United States the primary fruits of victory – and not just over Saddam and his regime. Exposure of his banned arsenal will show up the error of those opposed the war, the United Nations, France, Germany, Russia and international anti-war opinion."

Move gives Russian major critical mass  4/23/03 Financial Times: "In what became negotiations between two purely Russian entities - principally between Mr Khodorkovsky and Roman Abramovich, the dominant Sibneft shareholder - few outsiders were involved."

Fox News Engineer Charged With Smuggling  4/23/03 Guardian: the pirates of Fox News…

Charges against officer who ordered shots at press dropped  4/23/03 Haaretz, Israel 

Afghan security deteriorates as Taliban regroup  4/23/03 Jane's Intelligence Review, UK: "At the same time, the opposition has displayed greater aggressiveness both in attacking US Special Forces beyond their bases, and in concentrating larger numbers of fighters. The planting of mines on roads used by US patrols, which was begun last year, continues; but is now being reinforced with close-in ambushes. The Girishk ambush has been the only one to result in Coalition fatalities this year, but on 10 February a US patrol was attacked in the Baghran valley of upper Helmand province, by assailants using rocket propelled grenades and machine guns. Other ambushes have occurred near Asadabad in eastern Kunar and near Shkin, a well-known blackspot on the border of Paktika province with Pakistan." A respected UK defense source admitting what astute readers have known for months.

Memo from Saddam: We can't afford to pay Galloway more  4/23/03 Telegraph, UK: Galloway is an antiwar MP in Britain.

Show of Shia power unnerves the allies  4/23/03 Times, UK 

CORE Hustles White Firms With Race - Equal Opportunity Scam  4/23/03 Village Voice 

'Red Means Big Brother's in Charge'  4/23/03 Village Voice 

Tuesday  4/22/03

topA New War in Washington  4/22/03 Alternet: "I've never seen a wholesale attack on America's entire diplomatic establishment like this," said Charles Kupchan, a foreign-policy expert at Georgetown University. "This is fundamentally about ideology and the efforts of the neo-conservatives to institutionalize their victories over the moderate and liberal internationalists."

ACLU Seeks Gov't Data on 'No-Fly' List  4/22/03 AP: "The American Civil Liberties Union sued the FBI and other government agencies Tuesday on behalf of two peace activists detained at an airport because their names popped up on a secret ``no-fly'' list. The women were among 339 travelers briefly detained and questioned at San Francisco International Airport during the past two years after their names were found in the database, the ACLU said, citing government documents. Those travelers ultimately were allowed to continue on their journeys."

IRAQ NOTEBOOK - Freedom unbound, and out of control  4/22/03 Asia Times: "And now - unaccountably, incredibly, unbelievably - into this Cecil B DeMille epic nightmare scene wandered a lightly armed foot patrol of about half a dozen US Marines gawking about like farmboys come to see New York. God knows what they were thinking. The next day, I asked US Marine Staff Sergeant John Jamison, the public information officer in charge of the Adhamiya sector, that very question: "What the hell were you guys thinking?" And he had no idea what I was even talking about. His jaw dropped when I told him what had happened."

Baghdad protest takes US aback  4/22/03 BBC 

Military pullback part of U.S. strategy  4/22/03 China Post: "With the threat of Saddam Hussein all but extinguished and Arab suspicions of American intentions running deep, senior administration officials say the U.S. military has begun taking steps to significantly reduce its presence in much of the Middle East. Last week's quiet removal of 30 of 80 fighter jets and almost half the 4,500 personnel from Incirlik Air Base in Turkey, where the United States has maintained thousands of troops since the 1991 Persian Gulf War, is just the beginning, officials said. Within months, the Pentagon plans to close down most of its operations at Prince Sultan Air base in Saudi Arabia, leaving only a skeleton crew, and to move most of its aircraft and troops out of Qatar and Oman. The plans, which are preliminary and subject to review, are a response to pressure from Arab governments incensed by the U.S. military buildup in the region over the past 12 years, the financial burden of maintaining vast numbers of troops overseas and the strain it has caused for families and military readiness."

Bush's "Christian" Blood Cult  4/22/03 Counterpunch: "Bush mocked Tucker's appeal for clemency. In an interview with Talk magazine, Bush imitated Tucker's appeal for him to spare her life - pursing his lips, squinting his eyes, and in a squeaky voice saying, "Please don't kill me." "

Crimes against culture are remembered for ever - The Muslim world will ask why US forces let the looting happen and produce a simple answer: they hate Islam  4/22/03 Independent: "The most celebrated of such acts of vandalism, as every schoolboy used to know, was the destruction of the great library of Alexandria. Traditionally, this was dated to the seventh century, and ascribed to the Caliph Umar; he was always supposed to have said that if the books of the library conformed to the word of God, they were unnecessary; if they contradicted it, they were pernicious; in either case they could be destroyed without further consideration. The story, of course, is complete rubbish, and Umar almost certainly had nothing to do with the destruction of the library. In reality, the main museum and library were destroyed during the civil war of the third century AD and a subsidiary library was burned by Christians in AD 391. Islam, from its founding, had a respect for learning that greatly exceeded anything to be found in the rulers of Europe and Christendom, who were satisfied to sit around telling ignorant lies about other cultures."

Iraq Is the X-Factor at OPEC  4/22/03 LA Times 

Baghdad Shi'ites fete release of cleric by U.S.  4/22/03 Reuters: "Cheering Shi'ite Muslims paraded through central Baghdad on Tuesday, celebrating what they said was their leader's release from U.S. detention. Hundreds followed a car they said carried their leader, cleric Muhammad al-Fartusi, as he passed the Palestine Hotel in the city centre where many foreign journalists are staying."

Thousands of U.S. Troops in Mosul in Show of Force  4/22/03 Reuters: "About 50 helicopters shuttled up to 5,000 troops of the 101st Airborne Division from the outskirts of Baghdad to Mosul's airport, and then armed trucks ferried them into Iraq's third largest city. Tank units of the army's Fourth Infantry Division also rumbled into the violence-plagued city, passing grand mosques and bombed-out buildings, as well as negotiating their way round bustling street markets. Attack helicopters hovered overhead… There has also been opposition to the U.S. invasion, especially since Marines shot dead at least seven people at a protest in the city center last week. The Marines say they came under fire from paramilitaries but most, if not all, of the dead and wounded were civilians and senior army commanders believe the Marines may have overreacted to stone-throwing from the crowd. "They got the wrong guys. One was a 10-year-old girl, paralyzed," one officer said."

U.S. stopped al-Qaida plots against troops  4/22/03 UPI 

Monday  4/21/03

topAl-Jazeera correspondent detained in Basra  4/21/03 Al-Jazeera: "Weapons were pointed at Mohsen and his driver. The Al-Jazeera correspondent said the British soldier said US-led forces “were dealing only with listed journalists who accompanied coalition forces.” They were escorted to a British camp where a soldier addressed them in Arabic and told them they would not be allowed to work in the area until further notice."

US struggles with new rules as war turns to occupation  4/21/03 CS Monitor: "Exiled Iraqi lawyers say the US government failed to adopt - or even translate from Arabic - suggestions they provided in advance on how to prevent the kind of civil disorder, including looting and revenge killings, that has marred postwar Iraq. Weeks before the unrest erupted, the exiles proposed imposing martial law for 24 hours. The Pentagon also shelved a recommendation to recruit and vet Iraqi traffic police and security officers, who American soldiers did eventually turn to - but without checking their backgrounds."

Ba'athists slip quietly back into control  4/21/03 Guardian 

Hollywood revives McCarthyist climate by silencing and sacking war critics  4/21/03 Independent, UK: "The wife of a prominent Hollywood entertainment lawyer who attended a high-powered pre-Oscar dinner party was shocked to find that most of the assembled company was in fact heavily pro-war. "Here they were, all these so-called Hollywood liberals, and they were making jokes about peace activists and cheering on the troops," she said."

Officials Argue for Fast U.S. Exit From Iraq  4/21/03 Washington Post: reality sets in.


"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

Maps & Weather

A number of maps here

Estimates of the total number of Muslims range from 0.7 to 1.2 billion worldwide and 3 to 6 million in the U.S. About 20% of all people on earth follow Islam. The religion is in a period of rapid growth.

Christianity is currently the largest religion in the world. It is followed by about 33% of all people -- a percentage that has remaind stable for decades. It is expected that, if current trends continue, Islam will become the most popular religion sometime in the mid-21st century.


Death from Americatop

Iraq news: Soaring death rates among Iraqi children, 1999 BBC, UNICEF 500,000 child deaths

Ramsey Clark: Report to UN Security Council re: Iraq, 1/26/2000
1.5 million deaths

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