Obama's Cybersecurity Plan

Obama's Cybersecurity Plan: Bring in the Contractors!
by Tom Burghardt
With billions of dollars in federal funds hanging in the balance, President Barack Obama unveiled the Cyberspace Policy Review May 29 at the White House. During his presentation in the East Room Obama said that "America's economic prosperity in the 21st century will depend on cybersecurity" and that efforts to "deter, prevent, detect and defend" against malicious cyberattacks would be run from the White House.

How this debate is being framed however, has a familiar ring to it. Rather than actually educating the public about steps to prevent victimization, state prescriptions always seem to draw from the same tired playbook.

First, issue dire warnings of an imminent national catastrophe; second, manufacture a panic with lurid tales of a "digital Pearl Harbor;" third, gin-up expensive "solutions" that benefit armies of (well-paid) experts drawn from officialdom and the private sector (who generally are as interchangeable as light bulbs however dim).

As Wired magazine's†"Threat Level" editor Kevin Poulsen said during a panel at the Computers, Freedom and Privacy conference in Washington June 3, "the threat of cyber-terrorism is 'preposterous'," arguing that "long-standing warnings" that hackers will attack the nation's power grid is so much hot-air. Poulsen contends "that calling such intrusions national security threats means information about attacks gets classified unneccessarily."
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Dying Throes of the Republic

Death of the Republic, Part CLXVIII
by Chris Floyd   
Glenn Greenwald, among others, is enraged at Barack Obama's eager embrace of the latest disgorgement of third-rate juntaism to belch forth from the hallowed halls of the U.S. Congress: the "Detainee Photographic Records Protection Act of 2009," sponsored by those ever-stalwart champions of liberty, Senators Lindsey Graham and Joe Lieberman. As Greenwald describes it:

[The bill] literally has no purpose other than to allow the government to suppress any "photograph taken between September 11, 2001 and January 22, 2009 relating to the treatment of individuals engaged, captured, or detained after September 11, 2001, by the Armed Forces of the United States in operations outside of the United States."  As long as the Defense Secretary certifies -- with no review possible -- that disclosure would "endanger" American citizens or our troops, then the photographs can be suppressed even if [the Freedom of Information Act] requires disclosure...What kind of a country passes a law that has no purpose other than to empower its leader to suppress evidence of the torture it inflicted on people?  Read the language of the bill; it doesn't even hide the fact that its only objective is to empower the President to conceal evidence of war crimes.

What kind of country passes such a law? Why, a cheap, corrupt, third-rate junta state, which has elevated war and militarism into its supreme value, its "ultimate concern," its divinity -- that's what kind of country. What other kind of country did you think was skulking there between Mexico and Canada these days?

But the perniciousness of the act doesn't lie merely in its immediate goal -- suppressing war crimes evidence to protect the Terror War machinery that Obama has inherited and is expanding. After all, Obama has been working overtime from the beginning to suppress war crimes evidence against his predecessor, whom he treats more and more as a revered elder, not the despised leader of a discredited faction. No, it is, as they say, the principle of the thing: the enshrinement in law of the notion that anything that could be construed as "harmful" to American troops and operatives abroad -- or even the sad sacks back home -- can be suppressed by the government.
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Pere Jean-Juste, Presente!

Revolutionary Haitian Priest Gerard Jean-Juste, Presente!
by Bill Quigley | t r u t h o u t
Though Haitian priest Gerard Jean-Juste died May 27, 2009, at age 62, in Miami from a stroke and breathing problems, he remains present to millions. Justice-loving people worldwide mourn his death and celebrate his life. Pere Jean-Juste worked uncompromisingly for justice for Haitians and the poor, both in Haiti and in the US.

Jean-Juste was a Jesus-like revolutionary. In jail and out, he preached liberation of the poor, release of prisoners, human rights for all, and a fair distribution of wealth. A big, muscular man with a booming voice and a frequent deep laugh, he wore a brightly colored plastic rosary around his neck and carried another in his pocket. When he was jailed for nearly a year in Haiti by the US-supported coup government that was trying to silence him, Amnesty International called him a Prisoner of Conscience.

Jean-Juste was a scourge to the unelected coup governments of Haiti that served at the pleasure, and usually the direction, of the US government. He constantly challenged both the powers of Haiti and of the US to stop killing and starving and imprisoning the poor. In the US, he fought against government actions which deported black Haitians while welcoming Cubans, Nicaraguans and others. In Haiti, he called for democracy, respect and human rights for the poor.
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9/11 Truthers Do the Clinton-Bush Event

9/11 Truthers Do the Clinton-Bush Event in Toronto,
by Anthony J. Hall
The Bush-Clinton event in Toronto provided a good platform for those who put a priority on the quest for 9/11 Truth as a key to removing the blockages on the road to a more just, peaceful and equitable world. Wayne Prante of Fraser Valley 9/11 Truth and the one-and-only Splitting The Sky flew in late Tuesday night for the proceedings. On Wednesday night a small group of truthers, including Barrie Zwicker, Mark Savoury, Rick Tufts, Robert Trow, Tasha Lawrick and a first responder named Niki, gathered in a downtown location.
 
Wayne gave a brief presentation shedding light on the sometimes difficult relationship between the peace movement and those focusing on the lies and crimes 9/11. I read the text of my new paper, George Bush and Bill Clinton Do Toronto: Pepsi versus Coke meets Republican versus Democrat. I see this contribution as a follow up to Bush League Justice, the essay I prepared in the days leading up to the former president’s initial speaking foray outside the United States.

On Thursday night Splitting The Sky proudly wore his Mohawk Warrior crests as he addressed a primarily First Nations audience of about 100 people at the Native Canadian Centre in downtown Toronto. STS spoke of a looming attack on the Great Law of the Longhouse League resulting from the kind of ruthless vandalism directed at the rule of law especially during the recent presidency of George W. Bush. He explained the principles that caused him to intervene in attempting a citizens’ arrest of the former president at the Calgary event on March 17.
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A Killing Victory

The American Taliban Claim Another Victim
by Dave Lindorff
Sunday’s cowardly assassination of abortion doctor George Tiller demonstrates once again that the US is not all that different from Pakistan. One thing that these two violent societies share is having a group of rabid religious fundamentalists who are each on a jihad against those in their nation with whom they disagree, and who are ready to kill and maim their enemies without mercy or hesitation. The other thing—perhaps the more dangerous thing—that they share is a government apparatus in which certain elements are overtly or surreptitiously supportive of the jihadists, hoping to use them for their own political advantage, and in which other elements are cowed into silence and inaction.

In Pakistan it is the Taliban and related organizations and groups, which have the tacit support of some elements within Pakistan’s military, police and intelligence services and political parties. These elements encourage, assist and protect Taliban terrorists in their attacks on the larger society.

In the US, it is groups like Operation Rescue and other militant anti-abortion groups and the violent American “jihadists” who are attracted to them, that have terrorized women seeking abortions or abortion counseling, and that have terrorized the doctors and nurses who have bravely tried to provide women with the health care they want and need, including the constitutionally-protected right to an abortion.
 
(Dr. Tiller stood out among this bold group, keeping his clinic open for business despite fire-bombings, and despite an earlier attack in which he was shot in both arms. He regularly wore a button that read simply: "Trust Women.")
 
And it is political officials like Phillip Kline, who was attorney general in Kansas from 2000 to 2006, and who during that time repeatedly harassed and initiated criminal investigations against Tiller and his women’s health clinic in Wichita, who incite these groups to violence.
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Penetrating Sotomayor’s Judicial Philosophy

The Glass Wall: The People vs. Obama’s Supreme Court nomination
by Diane Walsh
Penetrating Sotomayor’s judicial philosophy is proving no easy task. Will we get the information we need to properly evaluate the merits of the US President’s ambiguous choice for the high court – before it’s too late? The media is in a frenzied state over this nominee – Judge Sonia Sotomayor.  One would expect this, given the stakes that her nomination holds for the fate of abortion rights – which are currently hanging in the balance.

What is Sotomayor’s view about a woman’s right to make childbearing decisions? Oddly, there is nothing concrete that we know about her actual judicial philosophy. No one seems to know exactly – because there is no clear answer being laid bare. 

This is creating much unease on both sides of the political spectrum.  There is a fundamental lack of information flowing.  This is unacceptable. I decided to seek out Gloria Feldt, former president of US Planned Parenthood, to get her take on the Sotomayor nomination.  She’s the quintessential trailblazer of the pro-choice lobby. 
 
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W. Promises: "If Elected, I'm Going to Invade Iraq"

BUSH TOLD HOUSTON JOURNALIST IN 1999: IF ELECTED, “I’M GOING TO INVADE IRAQ”
by Sherwood Ross
Two years before the 9/11 attacks on America, George W. Bush told a Houston journalist if elected president, “I’m going to
invade Iraq.” Bush made the comments about starting an aggressive war to veteran Houston Chronicle reporter Mickey Herskowitz, then working with Bush on his book “A Charge To Keep,” later brought out by publisher William Morrow.

This disclosure was uncovered by Russ Baker, an award-winning investigative reporter when he interviewed Herskowitz for his own book, “Family of Secrets” (Bloomsbury Press) about the Bush dynasty. However, Baker says, when he approached The Washington Post and The Los Angeles Times with the potentially devastating story to President Bush prior to the 2004 presidential election, they declined to publish it.

In a new book, “Media In Crisis”(Doukathsan), Baker quotes Herskowitz as telling him: “He (Bush) said he wanted to do it (invade Iraq), and the reason he wanted to do it is he had been led to understand that you could not really have a successful presidency unless you were seen as commander-in-chief, unless you were seen as waging a war.”
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Graduation Day at Empire You

Missing Word, Missing World: Graduating the Rest of Us, ‘09
by Tom Engelhardt
Graduates of the Bush years, initiates of the Obama era, if you think of a commencement address as a kind of sermon, then every sermon needs its text. Here's the one I've chosen for today, suitably obscure and yet somehow ringing:

"The idea that somehow counterterrorism is a homeland security issue doesn't make sense when you recognize the fact that terror around the world doesn't recognize borders. There is no right-hand, left-hand anymore."

That's taken directly from the new national security Bible of Obama National Security Advisor (and ex-Marine General) James Jones. He said it last week at a press briefing. The occasion was the integration of a Bush-era creation, the Homeland Security Council -- which, if you're like me, you had never heard of until it lost its independence -- into the National Security Council, which Jones runs, a move that probably represents yet another consolidation of power inside a historically ever more imperial White House.

After four years in this college, I assume you are students of the word and like all biblical texts, this one must be interpreted. It must be read. So let's start by thinking of it this way: If we are, in some sense, defined by our enemies, then consider this description of terrorism -- even though most acts of terror are undoubtedly committed by locally-minded individuals -- as something like a shadow thrown on a wall. The looming figure to which the shadow belongs is not, however, al-Qaeda, but us. We are, after all, in the war-on-terror business. It's how we've defined ourselves these last years.
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Land Grab: Settler Stephen Harper's Mohawk 'Palestinians'

CANADA KIDNAPS THE MOHAWKS - Bogus guns-at-the-border issue
by MNN
Bully Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, is trying to start an argument with the Mohawks to bring in paramilitary forces at Akwesasne.  On May 26, 2009 he signed into law the Shiprider Agreement, a cross border law between Canada and U.S.  The effect is those who stand up for their rights or criticize Canada are terrorists and the government can sue them and seize all their property. 
 
This is meant for us.  

A few years ago a plan was hatched.  Prime Minister Harper was friendly with the American real estate people in New York City.  They wanted him to change the laws so that Indigenous territories in Canada can be seized by outside interests for non-payment of false fines and criminal convictions. 
 
Their interest is primarily in Iroquois territories in southern Quebec and southern Ontario.  They also wanted to seize Indigenous property and resources in Alberta and elsewhere.  A campaign to discredit us was started. 
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Israel's Racists for Democracy

Racists for Democracy
by Uri Avnery
How lucky we are to have the extreme Right standing guard over our democracy.

This week, the Knesset voted by a large majority (47 to 34) for a law that threatens imprisonment for anyone who dares to deny that Israel is a Jewish and Democratic State.

The private member’s bill, proposed by MK Zevulun Orlev of the “Jewish Home” party, which sailed through its preliminary hearing, promises one year in prison to anyone who publishes “a call that negates the existence of the State of Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State”, if the contents of the call might cause “actions of hate, contempt or disloyalty against the state or the institutions of government or the courts”.

One can foresee the next steps. A million and a half Arab citizens cannot be expected to recognize Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State. They want it to be “a state of all its citizens” – Jews, Arabs and others. They also claim with reason that Israel discriminates against them, and therefore is not really democratic. And, in addition, there are also Jews who do not want Israel to be defined as a Jewish State in which non-Jews have the status, at best, of tolerated outsiders.
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Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Chris Genovali, Michael O'Tuathail, Janine Bandcroft June 1, 2009

This Week on GR
 by C. L. Cook
This week: Raincoast Conservation's Executive Director, Chris Genovali on B.C.'s green prospects under Gordon the Brown; Michael O'Tuathail and the Harper regime's apparent turn away from a politically risky Canada-Colombia trade deal; and, Janine Bandcroft brings us up to speed with what's what on Victoria's streets.
 
 
Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Monday, 5-6pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, 104.3 cable, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca. 
 
He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://GorillaRadioBlog.blogspot.com
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Today and Tomorrow: The Next Victims of Empire

TODAY ME, TOMORROW YOU - Hailie Selassie, 1936
by MNN
Rastafarians highly regard Selassie for this comment.  In 1936 the African nation of Ethiopia was invaded by Italy when it was ruled by Moussellini.  Selassie went to the League of Nations to ask for help.  They refused and offered him asylum in Britain. 
 
Something strange is being played out against the Mohawks at the Akwesane border.  We don't want guns there.  The U.S. and Canada want us to submit to their will because we are getting in the way of their plans.   

Who are the guns in the hands of the border guards going to be pointed at?  Who is putting the Americans into a pressure cooker, to watch out for terrorists and to keep worrying about a dangerous world? 
 
Who is pushing them into having no choice but to create a global fascist empire for their own protection?  It's the international bankers who are engineering the economic collapse and depression to bring the dollar down to zero. 
 
The U.S. as it stands today is going to be destroyed.  The Anglo-American empire will fall so that Fortress America can be set up and run by a few criminal war lords.      

The U.S. plans to own Canada and Mexico.  
 
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