5 Years Ago: Why Was Public So Misinformed on Facts Leading to War?

By E&P Staff

Published: March 23, 2008 11:10 AM ET
NEW YORK Five years ago today, as the U.S invasion of Iraq continued in its early stages, E&P published an article by Ari Berman, then an intern here, that examined the public attitudes on the eve of the war. He probed polls that found, on the most basic point, that roughly 2 out of 3 Americans backed an assault on Iraq.

But the attitudes driving those numbers raised serious issues about a misinformed public and the media’s role. He found that a startlingly high percentage falsely believed that Saddam helped plan the 9/11 attacks or Iraqi hijackers were involved that day, and that Iraqi WMD had already been found.
When the war dies down, editors and media analysts should catch their breath and ask themselves: How much did press coverage (or lack of coverage) contribute to the public backing for a pre-emptive invasion without the support of the United Nations?

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Where has all the rage gone?

I was twelve in 1968. I remember going to the biggest anti war protest ever in Amsterdam. 10s of thousands of people marching, against the war in Vietnam. My grandfather, who had fought in the resistance in the second world war when my mother was twelve, with my Jewish step grandmother who had lost her husband to the concentration camps in the II WW, and my parents  who had lived through the II WW, the hunger winter, the bombings, the violence and the deportation, of Jews( amongst others my fathers childhood friend a Jewish girl he just to play with),  , Labour leaders, Intelligencia, the gays, the gypsies and other undesirables and me and my sister, who grew up in the aftermath of war torn Europe.
When I was born 11 years after the war, there still was not a single tree in Amsterdam. They had all been chopped down to provide a little fuel in that cold and hungry winter (People would cycle a 100 km on bicycles with wooden tires to get a bag of potatoes or even tulip bulbs, which contrary to  popular  belief  taste horrible and are not on the daily menu of the the Dutch people)  we still no as the “honger winter” the “hunger winter.
We walked strong and proud that day, we all knew what war was about, and it is never about freedom, or democracy, or liberation. It is always about brutal domination of one people over another and the theft of their resources.
Even the “liberation” of Europe at the end of the war was staged and planned after the brutal money men and the military complex and the Bush family had earned their blood money.

We were strong then, and our leaders were scared of us, because they knew that we knew, and we were not going to take another war lying down. We knew that war is always in the end, a war of the leaders against their people, because ” the people”  always wake up to what their leaders are doing in their name, and they always will fight to take the power back.

But we grew complacent and we became  wealthy ourselfes and we forgot: If we the people are not guarding  jealously our freedom, and our peace against the greedy, the corrupted, the manipulators and the power hungry , than we will end up poor and destitute and enslaved again.(travellerev) 

NEW YORK Five years ago today, as the U.S invasion of Iraq continued in its early stages, E&P published an article by Ari Berman, then an intern here, that examined the public attitudes on the eve of the war. He probed polls that found, on the most basic point, that roughly 2 out of 3 Americans backed an assault on Iraq.

But the attitudes driving those numbers raised serious issues about a misinformed public and the media’s role. He found that a startlingly high percentage falsely believed that Saddam helped plan the 9/11 attacks or Iraqi hijackers were involved that day, and that Iraqi WMD had already been found.

Read more

Blair for European President.

Just imagine Blair running Europe.
The lying, warmongering scumbag. He is getting rich by donations from his Banker task masters while does their bidding.

Greedy, power hungry he just received “the medal for freedom” from the Southern Methodist University, the same univerity that is going to house the President George W. Bush library.

Causes and Consequences of Our Foreign Policy in the Middle East

Causes and Consequences of Our Foreign Policy in the Middle East

What It Means for Americans

By Karen Kwiatkowski

The following is the text of a speech given at Virginia Tech on February 12, 2008.

02/28/08  — — -I want to thank the Libertarians at Virginia Tech, the Political Science Club and the Institute for Humane Studies for the kind invitation to speak to you tonight.

I want to talk about the “Causes and Consequences of our Foreign Policy in the Middle East and What it Means for Americans.” The original title of this speech was “Causes and Consequences of our Foreign Policy in the Middle East and What it Means for Libertarians.” But I interchanged Americans for Libertarians. To paraphrase John F. Kennedy in Berlin, 1963, in times like these, when the American dream seems overwhelmed by what has become known as the American empire, perhaps we are all libertarians.

Let me start first with the consequences of our foreign policy in the Middle East, circa 2008.

  • We are nearly five years past the moment where George W. Bush declared “Mission Accomplished.”
  • 400,000 to 1.2 million Iraqis are dead by our decisions and actions. Over two million are internally displaced, and over two million Iraqis have fled the country.
  • 5,000 Americans are dead (soldiers and contractors) as a result, 30–50,000 physically injured, and over 100,000 mentally disturbed, receiving or awaiting treatment.
  • Army and Marines are morally and physically bankrupt – and burdened by executive pressure for more forces in Afghanistan, Pakistan and trouble in Iran.
  • A trillion dollars has been spent, another trillion to be spent before we are finished – and if McCain has his way, we will never be finished, and we will bleed ourselves for the duration of the 21st century.
  • Beyond Iraq, we have Secretary of Defense Bob Gates alternately screaming in an empty room and crying in despair because NATO won’t pick up the slack of propping up our preferred government in Kabul.
  • The one republic with nuclear weapons and a means to deploy them is led by an unstable dictator, threatened by his own subordinates, at odds with his very powerful and well-funded intelligence arm, and disliked by the majority of his citizens. And in case you were wondering, I am talking about Perez Musharraf.
  • Jordan, once reliable and trustworthy, is feeling the heat of over two million unemployed and impoverished Iraqis swelling their refugee camps.
  • Syria – who helped us with torture and renditions after 9-11 – has been both accused and attacked by her neighbor, our other nuclear-armed friend in the region.
  • Lebanon suffered a silly war in the summer of 2006 – a war that was considered an embarrassing defeat for Israel, and a war that Washington, D.C. collaborated on and quietly cheered.
  • Our steadfast friends, the House of Saud, don’t understand us anymore.
  • We publicly threaten Iran for all kinds of reasons, even though Tehran is signatory to and compliant with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and even as we happily work with all kinds of Iranian-backed interests in southern Iraq.
  • Four key undersea communication cables get cut in a week, isolating and seriously degrading much of the banking and communication traffic for our friends in the region, including in Dubai, which just bailed out some of our banks and credit card companies. Instead of decrying bad cable construction, and offering to send our own teams to help repair these cables in the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf, our government has said nothing. The entire region thinks we did it, either to send a message, test a military strategy, or to funnel information into a channel our vast intelligence bureaucracy can monitor.
  • The price of oil, adjusted for inflation, is not yet at the level of the 1979 oil crisis. But it is within 10% of that. Given the drastic increase in global demand for oil today, relative to that in 1979, our foreign policy in the Middle East might be said to be harmful, but not disastrous. But you must consider two things – the amount of oil the United States imports from the Middle East is around 10–15% of all the oil we import – but interfering with the free market in this region costs the American taxpayer billions and billions every year in maintaining a large overseas military presence, military and economic aid to major and minor allies in the region, the costs of periodic off-the-book interventions, like Iraq, and the costs involved with protecting your countrymen from people who hate you enough to want to kill you and topple your tall buildings.

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Narco Aggression: Russia accuses the U.S. military of involvement in drug trafficking out of Afghanistan

The global proceeds of the Afghan drug trade is in excess of 150 billion dollars a year. There is mounting evidence that this illicit trade is protected by the US military.Historically, starting in the early 1980s, the Afghan drug trade was used to finance CIA covert support of the Islamic brigades. The 2003 war on Afghanistan was launched following the Taliban government’s 2000-2001 drug eradication program which led to a collapse in opium production in excess of 90 percent.

The following report, which accuses the United States of using military transport planes to ship narcotics out of Afghanistan confirms what is already known and documented regarding the Golden Crescent Drug Trade and its insiduous relationship to US intelligence.

Russia, facing a catastrophic rise in drug addiction, accuses the U.S. military of involvement in drug trafficking from Afghanistan.

Afghanistan produced 8,200 tonnes of opium last year, enough to make 93 per cent of the world’s heroin supply.

Could it be that the American military in Afghanistan is involved in drug trafficking? Yes, it is quite possible, according to Russia’s Ambassador to Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov.

Commenting on reports that the United States military transport aviation is used for shipping narcotics out of Afghanistan, the Russian envoy said there was no smoke without fire.

“If such actions do take place they cannot be undertaken without contact with Afghans, and if one Afghan man knows this, at least a half of Afghanistan will know about this sooner or later,” Kabulov told Vesti, Russia’s 24-hour news channel. “That is why I think this is possible, but cannot prove it.”

Afghan narcotics are an extremely painful issue for Russia. They first hit the Russian market during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s when Russian soldiers developed a taste for Afghan heroin and smuggled it back to Russia.

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Connecting The Many Undersea Cut Cable Dots

by Richard Sauder

Copyright 2008. All rights reserved.

4 February 2008

The last week has seen a spate of unexplained, cut,  undersea communications cables that has severely disrupted communications in many countries in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. As I shall show, the total numbers of cut cables remain in question, but likely number as many as eight, and maybe nine or more.

The trouble began on 30 January 2008 with CNN reports that two cables were  cut off the Egyptian Mediterranean coast, initially severely disrupting Internet and telephone traffic from Egypt to India and many points in between. According to CNN the two cut cables “account for as much as three-quarters of the international communications between Europe and the Middle East.“ CNN reported that the two cut cables off the Egyptian coast were “FLAG Telecom’s FLAG Europe-Asia cable and SeaMeWe-4, a cable owned by a consortium of more than a dozen telecommunications companies”.(10) Other reports placed one of the cut cables, SeaMeWe-4, off the coast of France, near Marseille.(9)(12) However, many news organizations reported two cables cut off the Egyptian coast, including the SeaMeWe-4 cable connecting Europe with the Middle East.  The possibilities are thus three, based on the reporting in the news media: 1) the SeaMeWe-4 cable was cut off the coast of France, and mistakenly reported as being cut off the coast of Egypt, because it runs from France to Egypt; 2) the SeaMeWe-4 cable was cut off the Egyptian coast and mistakenly reported as being cut off the coast of France, because it runs from France to Egypt; or  3) the SeaMeWe-4 cable was cut both off the Egyptian and the French coasts, nearly simultaneously, leading to confusion in the reporting. I am not sure what to think, because most reports, such as this one from the International Herald Tribune, refer to two cut cables off the Egyptian coast, one of the two being the SeaMeWe4 cable,(11) while other reports also refer to a cut cable off the coast of France.(9)(12)  It thus appears that the same cable may have suffered two cuts, both off the French and the Egyptian coasts. So there were likely actually three undersea cables cut in the Mediterranean on 30 January 2008.

In the case of the cables cut off the Egyptian coast, the news media initially advanced the explanation that the cables had been cut by ships’ anchors.(10)(13) But on 3 February the Egyptian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology said that a review of video footage of the coastal waters where the two cables passed revealed that the area had been devoid of ship traffic for the 12 hours preceding and the 12 hours following the time of the cable cuts.(5)(11) So the cable cuts cannot have been caused by ship anchors, in view of the fact that there were no ships there.

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Chevron 4th-Quarter Profit Rises on Record Oil Prices

Feb. 1 (Bloomberg) — Chevron Corp., the second-largest U.S. oil company, said fourth-quarter profit rose 29 percent as crude prices climbed to a record on their way to topping $100 a barrel last month.

Net income increased to $4.88 billion, or $2.32 a share, from $3.77 billion, or $1.74, a year earlier, San Ramon, California-based Chevron said today in a statement. The company was expected to earn $2.29 a share, the average of 17 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Chevron had its biggest fourth-quarter profit gain in three years as global crude demand expanded faster than output from new wells. Chief Executive Officer David O’Reilly plans to spend almost $50 million a day on the search for untapped reserves this year, a 31 percent increase from 2007.

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