I'm Still Tortured by What I Saw in Iraq - washingtonpost.com
On the problems of torture and benefits of simple detective investigation: "We got to know our enemies, we learned to negotiate with them, and we adapted criminal investigative techniques to our work [...] 'I decided that everything I was told about Americans was wrong. That's why I decided to cooperate.' [...] I learned in Iraq that the No. 1 reason foreign fighters flocked there to fight were the abuses carried out at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo"
I learned in Iraq that the No. 1 reason foreign fighters flocked there to fight were the abuses carried out at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. Our policy of torture was directly and swiftly recruiting fighters for al-Qaeda in Iraq. The large majority of suicide bombings in Iraq are still carried out by these foreigners. They are also involved in most of the attacks on U.S. and coalition forces in Iraq. It's no exaggeration to say that at least half of our losses and casualties in that country have come at the hands of foreigners who joined the fray because of our program of detainee abuse. The number of U.S. soldiers who have died because of our torture policy will never be definitively known, but it is fair to say that it is close to the number of lives lost on Sept. 11, 2001. How anyone can say that torture keeps Americans safe is beyond me -- unless you don't count American soldiers as Americans.
"I learned in Iraq that the No. 1 reason foreign fighters flocked there to fight were the abuses carried out at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. Our policy of torture was directly and swiftly recruiting fighters for al-Qaeda in Iraq.The large majority of suicide bombings in Iraq are still carried out by these foreigners. "
How could anyone deny the opinions of someone one the ground ... especially someone on the ground who was successful.
Until we renounce the sorts of abuses that have stained our national honor, al-Qaeda will be winning.
Interrogator reveals practical reasons why torture was not just wrong in principle, but counterproductive in practice.Do these mysterious stones mark the site of the Garden of Eden? | Mail Online
"This revelation, that Stone Age hunter-gatherers could have built something like Gobekli, is worldchanging, for it shows that the old hunter-gatherer life, in this region of Turkey, was far more advanced than we ever conceived - almost unbelievably sophisticated."
Archaeologists worldwide are in rare agreement on the site's importance. 'Gobekli Tepe changes everything,' says Ian Hodder, at Stanford University.
For the old Kurdish shepherd, it was just another burning hot day in the rolling plains of eastern Turkey. Following his flock over the arid hillsides, he passed the single mulberry tree, which the locals regarded as 'sacred'. The bells on his sheep tinkled in the stillness. Then he spotted something. Crouching down, he brushed away the dust, and exposed a strange, large, oblong stone. The man looked left and right: there were similar stone rectangles, peeping from the sands. Calling his dog to heel, the shepherd resolved to inform someone of his finds when he got back to the village. Maybe the stones were important.The Pulitzer-winning investigation that dare not be uttered on TV - Glenn Greenwald - Salon.com
The New York Times' David Barstow won a richly deserved Pulitzer Prize yesterday for two articles that, despite being featured as major news stories on the front page of The Paper of Record, were completely suppressed by virtually every network and cable news show, which to this day have never informed their viewers about what Barstow uncovered. Here is how the Pulitzer Committee described Barstow's exposés: Awarded to David Barstow of The New York Times for his tenacious reporting that revealed how some retired generals, working as radio and television analysts, had been co-opted by the Pentagon to make its case for the war in Iraq, and how many of them also had undisclosed ties to companies that benefited from policies they defended. By whom were these "ties to companies" undisclosed and for whom did these deeply conflicted retired generals pose as "analysts"? ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN and Fox -- the very companies that have simply suppressed the story from their viewers. Th
CNN ran an 898-word story on the various Pulitzer winners -- describing virtually every winner -- but was simply unable to find any space even to mention David Barstow's name, let alone inform their readers that he won the Prize for uncovering core corruption at the heart of CNN's coverage of the Iraq War and other military-related matters. No other major television news outlet implicated by Barstow's story mentioned his award, at least as far as I can tell.
Pulitzer Prize for investigative journalism awarded to journalist who uncovered complicity between Bush-era military and US media. His award goes unreported in same media. Shameful.
The outright refusal of any of these "news organizations" even to mention what Barstow uncovered about the Pentagon's propaganda program and the way it infected their coverage is one of the most illuminating events revealing how they operate. So transparently corrupt and journalistically disgraceful is their blackout of this story that even Howard Kurtz and Politico -- that's Howard Kurtz and Politico -- lambasted them for this concealment. Meaningful criticisms of media stars from media critic (and CNN star) Howie Kurtz is about as rare as prosecutions for politically powerful lawbreakers in America, yet this is what he said about the television media's suppression of Barstow's story: "their coverage of this important issue has been pathetic."
Awarded to David Barstow of The New York Times for his tenacious reporting that revealed how some retired generals, working as radio and television analysts, had been co-opted by the Pentagon to make its case for the war in Iraq, and how many of them also had undisclosed ties to companies that benefited from policies they defended. By whom were these "ties to companies" undisclosed and for whom did these deeply conflicted retired generals pose as "analysts"? ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN and Fox -- the very companies that have simply suppressed the story from their viewers. They kept completely silent about Barstow's story even though it sparked Congressional inquiries, vehement objections from the then-leading Democratic presidential candidates, and allegations that the Pentagon program violated legal prohibitions on domestic propaganda programs.AND HE SHALL BE JUDGED: GQ Features on men.style.com
on the morning of Thursday, April 10, 2003, Donald Rumsfeld’s Pentagon prepared a top-secret briefing for George W. Bush. This document, known as the Worldwide Intelligence Update, was a daily digest of critical military intelligence so classified that it circulated among only a handful of Pentagon leaders and the president; Rumsfeld himself often delivered it, by hand, to the White House. The briefing’s cover sheet generally featured triumphant, color images from the previous days’ war efforts: On this particular morning, it showed the statue of Saddam Hussein being pulled down in Firdos Square, a grateful Iraqi child kissing an American soldier, and jubilant crowds thronging the streets of newly liberated Baghdad. And above these images, and just below the headline secretary of defense, was a quote that may have raised some eyebrows. It came from the Bible, from the book of Psalms: “Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him…To deliver their soul from death.” This mixing o
Nice overview of Donald Rumsfeld.
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"Former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld has always answered his detractors by claiming that history will one day judge him kindly. But as he waits for that day, a new group of critics—his administration peers—are suddenly speaking out for the first time. What they’re saying? It isn’t pretty"
Excellent profile of Donald Rumsfeld, who, it turns out, pandered to Bush's religiosity by including old testament citations on his defense intelligence reports from Iraq. Yikes.
Former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld has always answered his detractors by claiming that history will one day judge him kindly. But as he waits for that day, a new group of critics—his administration peers—are suddenly speaking out for the first time. What they’re saying? It isn’t prettyGQ Articles, Pics, and More on men.style.com
Crusading cover sheets from March & April, 2003The Red Cross Torture Report: What It Means - The New York Review of Books
Manliness, heroes, & national character - a harrowing account of our own failures: http://tr.im/jII7 (Read 2 the end!) (via @jayrosen_nyu) [from http://twitter.com/CircleReader/statuses/1617944525]
New York Review of Books
2 of 2 essays by Mark Danner
NY Review of Books review referring to Feb 2007 Red Cross study on torture, referred to by Rahm Emanuel
Mark Danner NY Review of Books April 3009Blackwater Founder Implicated in Murder
A former Blackwater employee and an ex-US Marine who has worked as a security operative for the company have made a series of explosive allegations in sworn statements filed on August 3 in federal court in Virginia. The two men claim that the company's owner, Erik Prince, may have murdered or facilitated the murder of individuals who were cooperating with federal authorities investigating the company. The former employee also alleges that Prince "views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe," and that Prince's companies "encouraged and rewarded the destruction of Iraqi life."Council for Secular Humanism
Incredibly, President George W. Bush told French President Jacques Chirac in early 2003 that Iraq must be invaded to thwart Gog and Magog, the Bible’s satanic agents of the Apocalypse. Honest. This isn’t a joke. The president of the United States, in a top-secret phone call to a major European ally, asked for French troops to join American soldiers in attacking Iraq as a mission from God.
Incredibly, President George W. Bush told French President Jacques Chirac in early 2003 that Iraq must be invaded to thwart Gog and Magog, the Bible’s satanic agents of the Apocalypse.
A French Revelation, or The Burning Bush
"Honest. This isn’t a joke. The president of the United States, in a top-secret phone call to a major European ally, asked for French troops to join American soldiers in attacking Iraq as a mission from God."
Now out of office, Chirac recounts that the American leader appealed to their “common faith” (Christianity) and told him: “Gog and Magog are at work in the Middle East…. The biblical prophecies are being fulfilled…. This confrontation is willed by God, who wants to use this conflict to erase his people’s enemies before a New Age begins.
Si Vous le Répétez, Je DémentiraiCaptured Photo Collection » Ian Fisher : American Soldier Photos
An interesting photo essay over two and a half years of the journey of an American infantryman.
For 27 months, Ian Fisher, his parents and friends, and the U.S. Army allowed Denver Post reporters and a photographer to watch and chronicle his recruitment, induction, training, deployment, and, finally, his return from combat.
via kottke ... deeply depressingBLDGBLOG: Saddam's Palaces: An Interview with Richard Mosse
[Image: Ruined swimming pool at Uday 's Palace, Jebel Makhoul, Iraq (2009)
"Vast, self-indulgent halls of columned marble and extravagant chandeliers, surrounded by pools, walls, moats, and, beyond that, empty desert, suddenly look more like college dormitories. Weight sets, flags, partition walls, sofas, basketball hoops, and even posters of bikini'd women have been imported to fill Saddam's spatial residuum. The effect is oddly decorative, as if someone has simply moved in for a long weekend, unpacking an assortment of mundane possessions."Insurgents Hack U.S. Drones - WSJ.com
Militants in Iraq have used $26 off-the-shelf software to intercept live video feeds from U.S. Predator drones, potentially providing them with information they need to evade or monitor U.S. military operations. Senior defense and intelligence officials said Iranian-backed insurgents intercepted the video feeds by taking advantage of an unprotected communications link in some of the remotely flown planes' systems. Shiite fighters in Iraq used software programs such as SkyGrabber -- available for as little as $25.95 on the Internet -- to regularly capture drone video feeds, according to a person familiar with reports on the matter. some officials to conclude that militant groups trained and funded by Iran were regularly intercepting feeds. A Reaper costs between $10 million and $12 million each and is faster and better armed than the Predator
Shiite fighters in Iraq used software programs such as SkyGrabber -- available for as little as $25.95 on the Internet -- to regularly capture drone video feeds, according to a person familiar with reports on the matter.
Militants in Iraq have used inexpensive, off-the-shelf software to intercept video feeds from Predator drones.
US Aircrafts hacked by Insurgents from IraqSean Gourley on the mathematics of war | Video on TED.com
Argues that you should look at the insurgency according to its structure.. more fragmented groups, or fewer but stronger groups?
Long running conflicts depend on a stability of number of factions vs. strength of factions, if you have lots of weaker factions, they're not strong enough to commit as effective attacks, if you have fewer, but stronger factions, you can start leveraging negotiation.Collateral Murder
Wikileaks leaking gratuitous US military killings. When they nonchalantly shoot journalists (or any people) someone still has to tell the people. I wonder what kind of consequences will come from this (for Wikileaks rather than the officials in charge, who'll – without doubt – have just done their job as usual).
5th April 2010 10:44 EST WikiLeaks has released a classified US military video depicting the indiscriminate slaying of over a dozen people in the Iraqi suburb of New Baghdad -- including two Reuters news staff.
Reuters has been trying to obtain the video through the Freedom of Information Act, without success since the time of the attack. The video, shot from an Apache helicopter gun-site, clearly shows the unprovoked slaying of a wounded Reuters employee and his rescuers. Two young children involved in the rescue were also seriously wounded.Testimony of Spc. Brandon Neely — The Center for the Study of Human Rights in the Americas (CSHRA)
A couple days later I found out from a detainee who was on that block that the older detainee was just scared and that when we placed him on his knees he thought he was going to be executed. He then went on to tell me that this man had seen some of his friends and family members executed on their knees. I can remember guys coming up to me after it was over that night and said "Man, that was a good job; you got you some". .......... Former President George Bush and Former Vice President Dick Cheney will never be held accountable for the decisions they made. It's the detainees and the guards like myself that will have to live every day with what they went through, saw, and did while there.
On December 4, 2008, Specialist Brandon Neely approached CSHRA with testimony he wished to contribute to the Guantánamo Testimonials Project. He believed that insufficient attention had been paid to "the hell that went on at Camp X-Ray." He would be in a position to know, as he arrived in Guantánamo while the cages of Camp X-Ray were still being welded, and escorted the second detainee to hit the prison grounds. In this interview, Specialist Neely provides testimony of the arrival of the detainees in full sensory-deprivation garb, sexual abuse by medical personnel, torture by other medical personnel, brutal beatings out of frustration, fear, and retribution, the first hunger strike and its causes, torturous shackling, positional torture, interference with religious practices and beliefs, verbal abuse, restriction of recreation, the behavior of mentally ill detainees, possible isolation regime of the first six children in GTMO, utter lack of preparation for guarding individuals detained
testimony of guard at GTMO
The bus doors opened, the escort teams were lined up right next to the bus to take the detainees off the bus and put them in the holding area. You could hear the Marines screaming at them "Shut the fuck up! You're property of the United States of America now."
And what about minimal force? SOPs say IRFings have to use the minimal amount of force necessary. And guards' reports that have been released say they were conducted in this way as well. On the other hand, you say that the Number 1 Man of the IRF team had to "hit the detainee as hard as he could with the shield". That does not seem consistent with minimal force… All I can say to this question is I am sure a lot really has changed in the way the day-to-day activities take place. Especially with regards to IRFing. But at Camp X-Ray, especially before ICRC (or International Committee of the Red Cross%2CNN’s Prisoner of War | Men’s Journal
"He had been hunted, kidnapped, and told he was filming his own execution. But CNN correspondent Michael Ware had no plans to leave Iraq. Now, it won’t leave him."
Hell and a bucket of gasoline.
He had been hunted, kidnapped, and told he was filming his own execution. But CNN correspondent Michael Ware had no plans to leave Iraq. Now, it won’t leave him.Abu Ghraib abuse photos 'show rape' - Telegraph
soliders Raping women
Those torture photos Obama won't release are, according to the telegraph, rape pics. http://tr.im/mY1h [from http://twitter.com/thegrumpyowl/statuses/1982217964]
Photographs of alleged prisoner abuse which Barack Obama is attempting to censor include images of apparent rape and sexual abuse, it has emerged.
2009-05-27: Photographs of alleged prisoner abuse which Barack Obama is attempting to censor include images of apparent rape and sexual abuse, it has emerged. At least one picture shows an American soldier apparently raping a female prisoner while another is said to show a male translator raping a male detainee. Further photographs are said to depict sexual assaults on prisoners with objects including a truncheon, wire and a phosphorescent tube. Another apparently shows a female prisoner having her clothing forcibly removed to expose her breasts. Detail of the content emerged from Major General Antonio Taguba, the former army officer who conducted an inquiry into the Abu Ghraib jail in Iraq. Allegations of rape and abuse were included in his 2004 report but the fact there were photographs was never revealed. He has now confirmed their existence in an interview with the Daily Telegraph.
RT: whoawhoawhoawhoa @problemchylde I want to cry. http://bit.ly/12zc46 I want to cry. [from http://twitter.com/kismet4/statuses/1950798238]Barack Obama: The TIME Interview
barack, obama, joe, klein, time, interview, democrat, democratic, politics, president, race, white, house, race, campaign, 2008
Joe Klein's perspective on Barack Obama
not an interview but the journalist talking about it...still pretty good. Liked the sync of the word "maturity" and his wedding ring at the end, kinda cool.