Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Iran : Special Analysis More Than A Game ....


Let's start with two points: 1) the regime almost certainly had an important connection with Tuesday's demonstration and attack on the British Embassy; 2) it supported that display of force not from strength, but from weakness.

For months, Iranian officials and media have been reacting to Western pressure with tough talk --- every day, we feature proclamations of the latest weapons system, cyber-offensive, and mobilisation of the Basij militia and the Iranian people.

Britain has a special place in that rhetoric: the historical villain of the oppression of Iran, London is attacked not only for its wing-man role to the US but also for the weaknesses of its economy, politics, and society. While America gets more than its share of criticism, of course, Britain is the bull's-eye target for pressure --- Iranian officials perceive that it cannot fight back with the force of a US punch, and there is the hope, probably forlorn, that the UK and Europe can be put at some distance from Washington if pressure is applied.

In recent weeks, and especially since the publication of the latest International Atomic Energy Agency report on Iran's nuclear programme, the regime campaign has escalated. The Islamic Republic is already in a serious --- possibly precarious --- economic position, and the last two weeks have brought a ratcheting-up of sanctions by the US, Britain, France, and Germany, with the prospect of European Union restrictions on imports of oil from more

CHINA :Georgetown students shed light on China’s tunnel system for nuclear weapons

The Chinese have called it their “Underground Great Wall” — a vast network of tunnels designed to hide their country’s increasingly sophisticated missile and nuclear arsenal.
For the past three years, a small band of obsessively dedicated students at Georgetown University has called it something else: homework.

Led by their hard-charging professor, a former top Pentagon official, they have translated hundreds of documents, combed through satellite imagery, obtained restricted Chinese military documents and waded through hundreds of gigabytes of online data.

The result of their effort? The largest body of public knowledge about thousands of miles of tunnels dug by the Second Artillery Corps, a secretive branch of the Chinese military in charge of protecting and deploying its ballistic missiles and nuclear warheads.

The study is yet to be released, but already it has sparked a congressional hearing and been circulated among top officials in the Pentagon, including the Air Force vice chief of staff.

Most of the attention has focused on the 363-page study’s provocative conclusion — that China’s nuclear arsenal could be many times larger than the well-established estimates of arms-control experts.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

IRAN :British Propaganda - Hague Comes Out Of The Closet To Threaten Iran AGAIN !

England on behalf of Israel and American trying to irritate the hell out of Iran with more propaganda tactics, pay a few activists to raid your Embassy followed by 'OUTRAGE' !

Iran protesters attack UK embassy in Tehran - Thursday 29 November

• UK foreign office "outraged"
Iranian protesters break into the British embassy in Tehran.
Iranian protesters break into the British embassy in Tehran. Photograph: Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images
Live blog: recap
6.22pm GMT / 1.22pm EST: Here is a summary of what happened on a day when UK-Iranian relations plummeted further:

Dozens of Iranian protesters forced their way into the British embassy in Tehran, tearing down the Union flag and throwing documents from the windows. They also pulled down a picture of the Queen and burnt an embassy vehicle, as well as US, Israeli and UK flags. The protesters said they wanted to shut down the embassy. Protesters also targeted Gholhak Gardens, a British diplomatic compound in north Tehran that has been a source of contention between Iranian and UK officials over its ownership. Both of the protests have now ended.

The UK foreign secretary, William Hague, said he held the Iranian government responsible for failing to protect the embassy, despite Tehran's expressions of regret for today's events. The foreign office advised British nationals in Iran to stay indoors and keep a low profile after the attacks. The Iranian foreign ministry said it regretted the events and was committed to the safety of diplomats on its soil but Hague said it "remains a very serious failure by the Iranian government".

The semi-official Fars news agency said six UK embassy staff were rescued by police after being held hostage by the protesters who it described as "self-motivated university students". The UK foreign office would not comment directly but Hague said that all staff had been accounted for.

Clashes between police and protesters were reported at the UK embassy. One protester was in a critical condition, according to Fars. It said several protesters and police officers were injured. Police used teargas to try to disperse protesters. Some were reportedly arrested at Gholhak Gardens.

Foreign secretary William Hague Photograph: Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP
6.10pm GMT / 1.10pm EST: The UK's foreign secretary, William Hague (pictured left), has issued a strong statement on Iran. He said all embassy staff are accounted for but his anger has clearly not been mollified by Iran's expression of regret for today's events:
"This afternoon our two Embassy compounds in Tehran were stormed by several hundred people, putting the safety of our diplomats and their families at risk and causing extensive damage to our property. The United Kingdom takes this irresponsible action extremely seriously. It amounts to a grave breach of the Vienna Convention which requires the protection of diplomats and diplomatic premises under all circumstances.
We hold the Iranian government responsible for its failure to take adequate measures to protect our embassy, as it is required to do. I spoke to the Iranian foreign minister this afternoon, to protest in the strongest terms about these events and to demand immediate steps to ensure the safety of our staff and of both Embassy compounds.
While he said that he was sorry for what had happened and that action would be taken in response, this remains a very serious failure by the Iranian government. The Iranian charge d'affaires in London has been summoned to the Foreign Office this afternoon and the prime minister has chaired a meeting of Cobra.
The safety of our staff is our utmost priority. On our latest information it now appears that all our staff and their dependants are accounted for. We are urgently establishing the whereabouts of our locally engaged security staff to ensure their wellbeing. All other locally engaged staff had been instructed not to attend the embassy today because of the likelihood of demonstrations.
We warn British nationals against all but essential travel to Iran, and we advise the small number that are in Iran to stay indoors and to await further advice. We have made clear to the Iranian government that they must take immediate steps to ensure the safety of UK personnel; to ensure that property taken from the Embassy compounds is returned; and to secure the compounds with immediate effect. Clearly there will be other, further, and serious consequences. I will make a Statement updating Parliament on this tomorrow." more

Monday, November 28, 2011

Military To Arrest American Citizens In Their Own Back Yard Without Charge Or Trial If Bill Is Passed !

A view of the US Senate (file photo)
American civil rights activists have censured the country's senate for seeking to allow the military to imprison American citizens without bringing a charge against them.

American rights activists have slammed the US Senate for gearing up to vote on a bill on Monday that would define the whole of the United States as a 'battlefield' and allow the military to arrest American citizens in their own back yard without charge or trial.

The reactions comes after the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said last week that “the senate is going to vote on whether Congress will give this president-and every future president - the power to order the military to pick up and imprison without charge or trial civilians anywhere in the world. The power is so broad that even US citizens could be swept up by the military and the military could be used far from any battlefield, even within the United States itself.”

Under the 'worldwide indefinite detention without charge or trial' provision of S. 1867, the National Defense Authorization Act bill, which is set to be up for a vote on the Senate floor Monday, the legislation will “basically say in law for the first time that the homeland is part of the battlefield,” said South Carolina's left-wing Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, who supports the bill.

The bill was drafted in secret by Senators Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.), before being passed in a closed-door committee meeting without any kind of hearing, the ACLU added.

This means Americans could be declared domestic terrorists and thrown in a military brig with no recourse whatsoever.

Given that the Department of Homeland Security has characterized behavior such as buying gold, owning guns, using a watch or binoculars, donating to charity, using the telephone or email to find information, using cash, and other instances of mundane behavior as potential indicators of domestic terrorism, such a provision would be wide open to abuse, critics say.

The senate bid comes against a backdrop of protests in the United States where Americans have been holding rallies against the corporatism and corruption on Wall Street.

The so-called 'Occupy' protesters say they are fed up with current economic hardships and are demonstrating against poverty, unemployment, war, and corporatism among other grievances that have plagued the country for several years now.

Protesters say they aim to increase the awareness of the public on the economic injustice in the country.

The Occupy movement emerged after a group of demonstrators gathered in New York's financial district on September 17 to protest the unjust distribution of wealth in the country, and the laws that maintain the distribution.


Sunday, November 27, 2011

Pakistan :Enraged Pakistanis burn Obama effigy, slam US

In Karachi, the port city used by the United States to ship supplies to troops fighting in Afghanistan, more than 700 people gathered outside the US consulate, an AFP photographer said.

They shouted: "down with America, stay away Americans, Pakistan is ours, we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our army", while Pakistani riot police were deployed near the more

Aljazeera: Arab Revolt - Past And Present - Arabs have historically revolted every decade against rulers and the west has counter-revolted most attempts.

Arafats Road to Olslo began in the 1970s with the large scale funding pouring in from the Gulf countries [EPA]

New York, New York - The current popular challenges to the Western-sponsored Arab dictatorships are hardly a new occurrence in modern Arab history. We have seen such uprisings against European colonialism in the region since its advent in Algeria in 1830 and in Egypt in 1882. Revolts in Syria in the 1920s against French rule and especially in Palestine from 1936 to 1939 against British colonial rule and Zionist settler-colonialism were massive by global standards.

Indeed the Palestinian Revolt would inspire others in the colonised world and would remain an inspiration to Arabs for the rest of the century and beyond.

Anti-colonial resistance which also opposed the colonially-installed Arab regimes continued inJordan, in Egypt, in Bahrain, Iraq, North and South Yemen, Oman, Morocco, and Sudan.

The massive anti-colonial revolt in Algeria would finally bring about independence in 1962 from French settler colonialism. The liberation of Algeria meant that one of the two European settler-colonies in the Arab world was down, and only one remained: Palestine. On the territorial colonial front, much of the Arabian Gulf remained occupied by the British until the 1960s and early 1970s, and awaited liberation. more

IRAN :Washington DC and Tel Aviv have been promoting a renewed rhetoric of an Iranian threat

The UN could establish a Nuclear-Free Middle East Zone with the help of the US that is busy securing oil supplies [EPA]

Editor's note: Over the past week various elements both in Washington DC and Tel Aviv have been promoting a renewed rhetoric of an Iranian threat. Back in July of this year, Professor Chomsky wrote the following commentary on the issue that resonates even louder today. more

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Syria :Media Lies Used to Provide a Pretext for Another "Humanitarian War": Protest in Syria: Who Counts the Dead?

According to numerous reports from the Western media, human rights organisation, as well as the UN, countless peaceful civilians have been killed by the Syrian forces since the beginning of the unrest in the country in mid March. But where do the numbers come from?
Many media reports on the alleged deadly repression by the Syrian government fail to mention the sources of their information, which are very often referred to solely as "human rights groups" or "activists":
"Rights groups said Sunday that troops cracking down on pro-democracy protesters killed eight people in northern Idlib province and four more in central areas near Hama. (Syrian Forces Kill 12 as ICRC Head Visits Damascus, Voice of America, September 4, 2011.)
These protests are an unprecedented challenge to President Bashar al-Assad — and his family, which has ruled the country for more than 40 years. The cost has been high: at least 200 dead, according to human rights groups, and many cyber activists have been jailed. (Deborah Amos, Syrian Activist In Hiding Presses Mission From Abroad, NPR, April 22, 2011.)
At least 75 people have been killed today in Syria during mass protests, local human rights activists told Amnesty International [...] 
Thirty were killed in the southern town of Izzra’, 22 in Damascus, 18 in the Homs area and the rest in other towns and villages, activists said [...] (Scores killed in Syria as 'Great Friday' protests are attacked, Amnesty International, April 22, 2011.)
Although the necessity to remain "anonymous" where dissent is said to be life threatening may under certain circumnstances be understandable, this stance inevitably raises suspicions: The "'numbers" can be used to demonize the government, as part of  covert operations by any state or organisation looking for regime change in Damascus. It is no secret that the overthrow of the Syrian regime has been a long-sought goal by several foreign powers, including the U.S. and Israel.

The reliance of the mainstream media on information emanating from anonymous groups provides a biased understanding of the Syrian protests, which in turn supports the broader objective of destabilizing the Syrian regime.
When information from unknown sources pertaining to the death toll is published either by a mainstream media or a recognized human rights group, it is invariably picked up and considered as "factual evidence" by other news sources or think tanks, without further verification. Moreover, in the process the information is subject to further distortion. Here is an example of this phenomenon: more

NATO : Air Attack On Pakistani Troops Was Self-Defence, Claims Senior Western Official

Nato trucks at the Pakistani border town of Torkham bound for Afghanistan
Nato trucks at the Pakistani border town of Torkham bound for Afghanistan: a senior western official claims an attack by Nato aircraft on Pakistani troops that allegedly killed as many as 28 soldiers was an act of self-defence. Photograph: Qazi Rauf/AP
An attack by Nato aircraft on Pakistani troops that allegedly killed as many as 28 soldiers and looks set to further poison relations between the US and Pakistan was an act of self-defence, a senior western official has claimed.

According to the Kabul-based official, a joint US-Afghan force operating in the mountainous Afghan frontier province of Kunar was the first to come under attack in the early hours of Saturday morning, forcing them to return fire.

The high death toll from an incident between two supposed allies suggests Nato helicopters and jets strafed Pakistani positions with heavy weapons.

The deadliest friendly fire incident since the start of the decade-long war also prompted Pakistan to ban Nato supply trucks from crossing into Afghanistan and to issue an order demanding the US quit the remote Shamsi airbase, from which the US has operated some unmanned drone aircraft.

A spokesman for Nato's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said it was "highly likely" that aircraft which had been called into the area to provide "close air support" to troops on the ground was responsible for causing casualties among the Pakistani more


Friday, November 25, 2011

Syria On Verge Of Civil War

A grenade attack targeting the Damascus headquarters of the Syrian Baath party is just one more indication that the armed resistance to Assad's rule is rising and that the chances of a full scale civil war are growing by the week.
While the opposition in Syria is becoming an armed resistance, any outside military intervention would be pitted against a "really modern air force," said Anthony Cordesman, a military analyst at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.
"They know how to use their surface-to-air missiles," and can draw on an experienced army with thousands of tanks, Cordesman said. "Talking about a casual use of force, something like the no-fly zone we had inside Libya, simply isn't tenable."
The eight-month revolt against Assad's rule has begun to splinter the army, squeeze the economy and weaken support among erstwhile backers. Jordan's King Abdullah has said that Assad should step down. In the past week, defectors launched a rocket- propelled grenade assault on a military security building in Damascus.
Syria's people, not Assad's government, are suffering from international sanctions imposed because of the crackdown on protests, central bank Governor Adib Mayaleh said. While the Syrian pound is trading within a reasonable range, Syrians should avoid speculation in the currency that would put their assets at risk, he said on state television today.
Assad said military action against Syria would create an "earthquake" across the Middle East.
Read more:

Syria : Six Elite Pilots Killed In Ambush

Six elite military pilots have been killed in an ambush in the restive Homs province of Syria, the country’s military has said.

In a rare TV statement, the armed forces confirmed the deaths which occured on Thursday, marking a dangerous escalation in violence.

International pressure has been mounting on Syrian president Bashar Assad to curb violence, but the statement warned that the army will “hit back” at any attempt to cause chaos.

The death come as Syria misses a deadline imposed by the Arab League to sign a deal allowing monitors into the country.

The League, which has expelled Syria, want observe if a plan to end bloodshed within the country is being carried out.

More follows

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

#Iran : #American #Propaganda -Seymour Hersh: Propaganda Used Ahead of Iraq War Is Now Being Reused over Iran’s Nuke Program

While the United States, Britain and Canada are planning to announce a coordinated set of sanctions against Iran’s oil and petrochemical industry today, longtime investigative journalist Seymour Hersh questions the growing consensus on Iran’s alleged nuclear weapons program.

International pressure has been mounting on Iran since the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency revealed in a report the "possible military dimensions" to Iran’s nuclear activities, citing "credible" evidence that "indicates that Iran has carried out activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device." In his latest article for The New Yorker blog, titled "Iran and the IAEA," Hersh argues the recent report is a "political document," not a scientific study. "They [JSOC] found nothing. Nothing. No evidence of any weaponization," Hersh says. "In other words, no evidence of a facility to build the bomb. They have facilities to enrich, but not separate facilities to build the bomb. This is simply a fact." [includes rush transcript]

Sunday, November 20, 2011

#OWS #America #Police #Brutality !!!!

#IRAQ :Video - #Oakland Cops Beat Iraq War Veteran Kayvan Sabehgi

#CIA Killed #JFK And My Dad Helped Them !

Saint John Hunt, recipient and custodian of father E. Howard Hunt’s confession to participating in the LBJ-approved, CIA-orchestrated murder of JFK

[Don't miss James Fetzer's talk Who Killed JFK? this Tuesday, November 22nd at the University of Wisconsin-Madison! Details here.]

Of all the big lies told about the JFK assassination, perhaps the biggest is: “I guess we’ll never really know what happened.”

Bullshit! We do know.

Some of us know because we have studied the issue. Others, like Saint John Hunt, son of CIA executive and covert action agent E. Howard Hunt, know because they got it straight from the horse’s more

Saturday, November 19, 2011

#CHINA : #Obama's Betrayal To China

KUHNER: Obama’s betrayal to China
By Jeffrey T. Kuhner - The Washington Times


By Brett M. Decker and William C. Triplett II

Regnery, $27.95, 231 pages

Reviewed by Jeffrey T. Kuhner


logo-9_s220x278.jpgPresident Obama is creating a post-American world - one that is ushering in the dominance of China. Mr. Obama is fostering U.S. economic and military decline while simultaneously empowering Beijing’s rise to superpower status. China’s communists are on the march. Unless Americans wake up to the growing threat, both internal and external, our victory in the Cold War will have been useless.

This is the disturbing theme of “Bowing to Beijing: How Barack Obama Is Hastening America’s Decline and Ushering a Century of Chinese Domination,” by Brett M. Decker, editorial page editor of The Washington Times, and William C. Triplett II, a best-selling author and renowned China analyst. Lucid, concise and comprehensively researched, the book is a fire bell in the night. It is a dire warning that China has become what America once was to Great Britain: the ambitious upstart determined to eclipse the global colossus. The result will be not only the end of the American moment, but the triumph of a belligerent authoritarian communism hostile to democracy and the West.

“China’s leaders are engaged in a war against America. They view us as a threat to their regime and way of life. Hence, they have embarked on a systematic, long-term program to surpass us militarily, economically and politically,” Mr. Decker said in an interview. “They are willing to do anything - purchase our national debt, steal our intellectual property, spend obscene amounts to buy influence in Washington, engage in extensive espionage in our government and large corporations, and sell sensitive missile and nuclear technology to our mortal enemies - to defeat us. And the Obama administration is turning a blind eye.”

Read full article and comment

#UK #Goverment #Torture : #Amnesty International Raps UK Goverment (Human Rights)

Amnesty International has slammed British intelligence agencies' use of methods involving “torture, rendition and secret detention” after UK Foreign Secretary praised MI5 and MI6.

“William Hague is perfectly justified in praising the work of those that help to keep this country safe, but it's not acceptable if this task is done with methods that include torture, rendition and secret detention,” said Amnesty International UK Director Kate Allen, responding to a speech made by Hague.

In the speech arranged to praise the work of British intelligence services, Hague admitted that MI5 and MI6 officers had been involved in the extraordinary rendition scandal resulting in the illegal detention, abuse, and torture of terror suspects.

Furthermore, in an effort to hit at the Detainee Inquiry-an independent inquiry aimed at investigating Britain's role in the torture and abuse of detainees in the so-called “war on terror”-Hague called for restricting the ability of courts to investigate the work of British intelligence services.

Hague's proposals come as an all-party parliamentary group urged an information tribunal to release intelligence documents containing information about the British government's role in secret rendition of UK residents to Guantanamo Bay.

Nevertheless, Amnesty International questioned the integrity of the Detainee Inquiry saying it “falls well short of international standards for proper investigations and will not be able to deliver justice for the victims of these abuses, reassure the public or indeed hold accountable anyone involved.”

Moreover, Allen raised concerns over Hague's intention to overlook the brutal offences committed by Britain's intelligence agents saying Hague's speech “glosses over the danger of failing to properly hold the agencies to account.”


#UK Goverment Cover- Up : The Censored Investigation !

#FBI #Terrorist : Fake Terror Plots Paid Informants - The Tactics Of FBI 'Entrapment' Questioned


His aunt, Alicia McWilliams, was honest about the tough streets her nephew was dealing with. “Newburgh is a hard place,” she said. So it was perhaps no surprise that in May, 2009, David Williams was arrested again and hit with a 25-year jail sentence. But it was not for drugs offences. Or any other common crime. Instead Williams and three other struggling local men beset by drug, criminal and mental health issues were convicted of an Islamic terrorist plot to blow up Jewish synagogues and shoot down military jets with missiles.

Even more shocking was that the organisation, money, weapons and motivation for this plot did not come from real Islamic terrorists. It came from the FBI, and an informant paid to pose as a terrorist mastermind paying big bucks for help in carrying out an attack. For McWilliams, her own government had actually cajoled and paid her beloved nephew into being a terrorist, created a fake plot and then jailed him for it. “I feel like I am in the Twilight Zone,” she told the Guardian.

Lawyers for the so-called Newburgh Four have now launched an appeal that will be held early next year. Advocates hope the case offers the best chance of exposing the issue of FBI “entrapment” in terror cases. “We have as close to a legal entrapment case as I have ever seen,” said Susanne Brody, who represents another Newburgh defendant, Onta Williams.
Some experts agree. “The target, the motive, the ideology and the plot were all led by the FBI,” said Karen Greenberg, a law professor at Fordham University in New York, who specialises in studying the new FBI tactics.

But the issue is one that stretches far beyond Newburgh. Critics say the FBI is running a sting operation across America, targeting – to a large extent – the Muslim community by luring people into fake terror plots. FBI bureaux send informants to trawl through Muslim communities, hang out in mosques and community centres, and talk of radical Islam in order to identify possible targets sympathetic to such ideals. Or they will respond to the most bizarre of tip-offs, including, in one case, a man who claimed to have seen terror chief Ayman al-Zawahiri living in northern California in the late 1990s.

That tipster was quickly hired as a well-paid informant. If suitable suspects are identified, FBI agents then run a sting, often creating a fake terror plot in which it helps supply weapons and targets. Then, dramatic arrests are made, press conferences held and lengthy convictions secured.

But what is not clear is if many real, actual terrorists are involved... read more

Friday, November 18, 2011

#Iran's Nukes :U.S. faces tough choice on Iran’s nukes

key U.N. atomic agency meeting Thursday.

They can defy Russia and China with a demand that Iran start answering questions on its alleged secret nuclear arms program or face renewed referral to the U.N. Security Council.
Or they can settle for a milder rebuke of Tehran that leaves the big powers formally speaking with one voice but leaves the world’s hands tied in investigating the suspicions about the Islamic republic.

Both ways, the United States, Britain, France and Germany stand to lose as they head into the opening session of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) 35-nation board meeting.
If they push for a tough resolution that sets a time frame for Iran to cooperate with the IAEA’s probe, then Russia and China are likely to vote against it.

#Israel Beware : #China Arms Hezbollah !

It doesn’t take a lot to exacerbate the broiling political crisis in the Middle East, and Beijing’s international arm sales pour fuel on the Muslim-Jewish fire. During the Second Lebanon War, a Chinese C-802 anti-ship missile struck Israel’s INS Hanit off the Lebanon coast. Four Israeli sailors were killed in the incident - Yoni Hershkovitz from Haifa, Shai Atias from Rishon Letzion, Tal Amgar from Ashdod and Dov Shtienshos from Carmiel. The oldest was 37, the youngest just 19. All of them had families.

The casualties could have been much worse. The majority of the Hanit’s 80 crew members were sitting down to a “Sabbath eve dinner, an error of complacency that ironically in retrospect ended up saving lives.” Most of the crew was in the ship’s mess, a central location away from the spot where the missile more

#IRAN : Attack On Iran Could Risk Gulf Oil Supplies

Iran is contemplating violently shutting down shipping in the Persian Gulf as one of several counterattack options if Israel strikes its nuclear facilities, regional and intelligence analysts say.

Such attacks would present the Obama administration with the option of undertaking a limited war against Iran by striking its warships and shore-based anti-ship missiles to keep the Gulf open for business.

Former CIA analyst Larry C. Johnson said Iran has enough firepower to effectively close the Gulf and Strait of Hormuz, through which 40 percent of all the world’s oil moves.

“One of the things that Iran has exercised, has the capability to do, is shut down the Persian Gulf,” Mr. Johnson said. “The best-case scenario is they shut it down for a week. The worst case is they shut it down for three to four months.” more

#UK : David Cameron Has Committed Treason !

#IRAQ: #BBC Propaganda For The U.S....Propaganda Fails To Mention The American Rapists Of Iraqi Women And Children !

As the 31 December deadline for the pullout of all the American troops from Iraq approaches, the BBC's Gabriel Gatehouse in Baghdad asks what kind of a country Washington leaves behind.

"I've been here for over six years," said John, a mulletted, moustachioed civilian contractor, driving a pickup truck through the dusty lanes of Camp Kalsu.

"I'm helping to do whatever needs to be done. Take it easy, see ya!" and with that he cranked up the volume on his iPod, plugged into the pickup's stereo, and drove off in a blast of country and western.

John is just one of tens of thousands of Americans - civilian and military - getting out of Iraq.
Camp Kalsu, 50km (31 miles) south of Baghdad, is a glorified military truck-stop. And these days, it's busy.

Every day convoys of military trucks and tanks snake their way onto this base, as they head south towards Kuwait.

There are still some 30,000 US soldiers in Iraq. By the end of December, they must all be gone.

#Iran : #TAPI Pipeline Project Leaves Iran Out In The Cold...IRAN 's Gas Pipeline IP Bypasses Afghanistan

Once the pipeline is up and running, it could allow Pakistan to receive over 10 billion cubic metres of gas a year. DESIGN: FAIZAN DAWOOD

Of all the potential solutions to Pakistan’s power crisis, importing gas through the proposed Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistani-India (TAPI) pipeline project may be the most realistic. Turkmenistan has one of the largest gas reserves in the world and is looking to move away from dependency on Russia and the former Soviet states for its economic health.

With a willing buyer and an eager seller, the TAPI pipeline, first proposed in the 1990s, should have become reality by now. Still, the two countries finally reached a breakthrough after signing a Gas Sales and Purchase Agreement, which should make the pipeline operational by 2016. Once the pipeline is up and running, it could allow Pakistan to receive over 10 billion cubic metres of gas a year. For a country that is suffering an acute energy crisis, this is a necessity rather than a luxury.

Despite the signing of this agreement, many of the problems that have plagued the project still exist, security being a major one. Among the routes the pipeline will run through are Herat and Kandahar in Afghanistan and Quetta in Pakistan. That would make the pipeline a tempting target not just for Taliban rebels but also for Baloch separatists. It is unlikely that foolproof security could be ensured for the pipeline in these areas, a concern that India has already raised.

Keeping this in mind, Pakistan should not solely commit to the TAPI pipeline and needs to keep looking at alternatives, like the gas pipeline from Iran that would bypass Afghanistan.

The main obstacle to the Iranian pipeline is US intransigence

 — the Americans have been pressuring the Pakistani government to abandon it.

 On this occasion, though, the pressure should be ignored.

Whether it’s from Turkmenistan or Iran, Pakistan desperately needs a steady supply of energy.

That concern must come before all other considerations.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 16th,  2011.

#Portugal:American Extradition Denied-Extradition Request For Fugitive George Wright Denied By Portugal

Americans want Wright – who was captured by the FBI after 40 years on the run – to serve rest of jail term for 1962 killing

George Wright in Portugal in 2000
George Wright escaped from prison in 1970 and was on the run for 41 years until his arrest in September. Photograph: AP
A Lisbon court has denied a US request for the extradition of captured American fugitive George Wright, his lawyer has said.

The US wants Wright returned to serve the rest of his 15- to 30-year jail sentence for a 1962 killing in New Jersey. Wright was captured in Portugal in September after more than four decades on the run.

Wright's lawyer, Manuel Luis Ferreira, told the Associated Press by telephone that the court rejected the US bid.

Ferreira said the judge accepted his arguments that Wright is now Portuguese and that the statute of limitations on the killing had expired. He declined to provide further details, saying he would speak to the media later in the day. Court officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

Wright has been under house arrest for the past four weeks at his home near Lisbon, wearing an electronic tag that monitors his movements.

Wright spent seven years in a US prison for the New Jersey murder before escaping in 1970, and was on the run for 41 years until his arrest. Wright had initially been held in a Lisbon jail since he was caught.

Ferreira previously told AP he would argue Wright is now a Portuguese citizen and should be allowed to serve the remainder of his sentence in Portugal, where his wife and two grown children live.

Wright was captured in the seaside village where he has lived since 1993 after authorities matched his fingerprint on a Portuguese identity card to one in the US.

Wright got Portuguese citizenship through marriage in 1991 after Guinea-Bissau, a former Portuguese colony in West Africa, gave him the new name of "Jose Luis Jorge dos Santos" and made him a citizen. The identity from Guinea-Bissau was granted after the country gave Wright political asylum in the 1980s, and that was accepted by Portugal when it granted him citizenship, according to his lawyer.

Wright broke out of Bayside State Prison in Leesburg, New Jersey, on 19 August 1970.
In 1972, Wright – dressed as a priest and using an alias – hijacked a Delta flight from Detroit to Miami along with others, police say.

After releasing the plane's 86 other passengers for a $1m ransom, the hijackers forced the plane to fly to Boston, then to Algeria, where the hijackers sought asylum.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

#Russia #IP Gas Line :Russia Keen To Lay IP Gas Line In Pakistan

Pakistan will renegotiate the gas price with Iran under the IP gas pipeline project in 2013, one year before the said project comes on stream on December 31, 2014.

Pakistan will be able to save $100 billion in the next 25 years if the government manages to bring down the price of Iranian gas by 10 percent, Dr Asim Hussain, Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources disclosed in a press briefing on Sunday. Pakistan will bring down the price by 10 percent from the price that Tehran and Islamabad had finalised under the GSPA to the price offered by Turkmenistan under the TAPI gas line project.

Two years ago, the gas price was finalised at 78 percent of crude price for import of 750 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) gas from Iran. “Turkmenistan has offered gas price at its border at 50 percent of Brent,” Dr Asim said, elaborating on the price of gas to be imported from Turkmenistan.

“Both sides have decided the basic parameters of the pricing formula for gas to be imported under the TAPI gas line, but the GSPA (gas sales purchase agreement) has not yet been finalised and once the transit fee to be charged by Afghanistan is decided, the price will be finalised.”

To a question, the minister explained that Pakistan would ensure the 28:78 equity ratio in the investment of laying down the IP gas line and to this effect Russia had shown keen interest in laying the portion of the IP gas line in Pakistan.
He said that financial advisers would soon be appointed to ascertain how much investment Pakistan needed to ensure the IP gas line. “We are going to impose gas infrastructure surcharge to ensure financing for the laying of TAPI, IP gas lines and LNG pipeline from Karachi to Punjab,” he said, adding that a Gas Development Surcharge was being given to the provinces under the NFC Award and was the main reason the federal government wanted to impose the gas infrastructure surcharge.

Speaking about gas load management in the winter season, the minister reiterated that the plan to manage the gas load would be finalised on a monthly basis. He said a three-day gas holiday in the CNG sector and three-day gas closure for the industrial sector would be ensured in the winter season. If the supply side is improved, he said, the provision of gas to both the CNG and industrial sectors would be reviewed accordingly.

In the month of November, the country will face gas deficit of 529 mmcfd while in December 911 mmcfd and in January the deficit will touch 1.127 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd). The gas deficit in February will be at 1.046 bcf and in March would tumble to 762 mmcfd.

He said under the agreements, the industrial sector was entitled to gas only for nine months a year and was not supposed to get gas in the winter season, but the government wanted to provide gas to the industrial sector keeping in view the importance of the sector to the economy.

The minister said the power sector would be provided 76 million cubic feet per day (mmcfd) and the fertilizer sector would get 90 mmcfd. To a question, he said the domestic sector enjoyed top priority in terms of gas availability during the winter season and the government would ensure that it did not suffer in the winter season. “We need to learn how to share the gas deficit with patience,” the minister said.

He termed Article 158 of the Constitution one of the main reasons for the gas crisis in the Punjab as under this article, gas producing provinces have the first right to cater to their energy needs and only if they have surplus gas it will be transported to the federating units where gas is not available in abundance.

“We are vigorously working on the import of LPG and LNG and for the exploration of tight and shale gas to cater to the future needs of the country,” the minister said, adding that in the past, tight and shale gas had remained untapped but the government had now decided to explore these resources. According to one estimate, Pakistan is rich in shale gas and has 76 trillion cubic feet reserves of it, three times more than the existing gas resources.

The minister said the OGDCL had also stepped up its exploration activities in Zin block in Balochistan and so far OGDCL had drilled the well as per schedule and with good results. He said if OGDCL manages to succeed, the gas at Zin would erase the existing gas scarcity. To a question, the minister said the issue of circular debt would be resolved in the current month.

Russia keen to lay IP gas line in Pakistan: Dr Asim

#Iran #Pakistan : #IP Project - America FORCING Pakistan To Abandon IP And Go With TAPI Leaving IRAN In The Cold !

#Iran #Pakistan :Pakistan to renegotiate price formula with Iran

Pakistan to renegotiate price formula with Iran

* Dr Asim says resettlement of price will save around $100 million

* Survey and design work on project complete

By Zeeshan Javaid

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has decided to renegotiate the gas price formula with Iran under the long awaited $1.25 billion Iran Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project, to compete with the price mechanism settled under Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India (TAPI) gas pipeline project with Turkmen government.

Islamabad and Tehran inked the Gas Sales Purchase Agreement (GSPA) of IP gas pipeline project in June 2009 within certain terms and conditions, including that Pakistan would pay 78 percent of crude oil parity price to Iran after mutual consensus of both countries.
“After inking GSPA with Turkmen president under $7.6 billion TAPI gas pipeline project today at Islamabad, federal government would start the renegotiation process with Tehran over gas import under IP project to bring the gas purchase price from 78 percent of crude oil price in international market to downward,” said Federal Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr Asim Hussain.

Talking to media men, Hussain said that gas purchase price would be resettled with Iran and resettlement of new price would save $100 million from the actual cost $1.25 billion of IP gas pipeline project.

 He further said that survey and design work on Pak-Iran gas pipeline has been completed, and that gas shortage would be overcome early next year. “200mmcf more gas is expected from domestic sources which would help overcome shortage during winter,” he said.

Because of severe disagreements between US and Iran, Washington has expressed serious concerns over IP project and has been forcing Pakistan to abandon this project and shift to TAPI project.

Energy managers in the ministry claimed that Iranian government has completed the IPI project pipeline section of 1100km, however, the work on the Pakistani side would start before end of ongoing year.

Lack of funds and worsening law and order situation in Balochistan has delayed the construction work According to well-informed officials in the energy sector, construction work on the 750km pipeline is likely be completed by the end of this month, while a 42 inches diameter pipeline would be installed to connect Baluchistan, Sindh and Punjab through the Khuzdar to Karachi at a cost of $1.25 billion.

Pakistan would be required to pay 70 percent of the price of Crude Oil in international market for the gas imported under $7.6 billion Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India (TAPI) gas pipeline project.

The Gas Sales Purchase Agreement (GSPA) of TAPI project between both countries would be inked today (Monday) during a one-day visit of Turkmen President Kurbanguly Berdymukhamedov to Islamabad.

The gas volume in TAPI pipeline would be 3.2 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) out of which 500 million cubic feet per day would be bought by Afghanistan, whereas both Pakistan and India would buy 1,325 mmcfd gas each from the project. The previous source of pipeline project was Daulatabad but now it had been relocated to South Yolstan/Osman in Turkmenistan.

The petroleum minister claimed that gas shortage would be crucial during first quarter of next year, therefore supply to industries and gas stations would be shut down for three days a week in winter and provision of uninterrupted gas supply would be ensured to domestic consumers on priority basis during ongoing winter season.

#Iran #India #Pakistan :Tapi gas pipeline transit fee: Asim to visit India for talks


ISLAMABAD: Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr Asim Hussain would visit India in December 2011 to negotiate the transit fee for planned Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project, Business Recorder has learnt.

Pakistan on November 14 signed initial Gas Sales Purchase (GSP) agreement with Turkmenistan, which was a landmark achievement. Talking about the next steps regarding the TAPI project, sources said that this would be followed by the signing of 'Heads of Agreement' and Transportation and Transit accords by the end of the year.

Sources said India is reported to have already finalised gas price with Turkmenistan under the TAPI project, and it has negotiated a transit fee with Pakistan. more

#Iran #Tapi Gas Pipeline - And The IP (Iran Pakistan Gas Pipeline ) America Wants To Smash !

#IRAN : #TAPI Gas Pipeline Draft Agreement Reached (October 28)

Another major reason America wants to attack Iran, American solidiers who gave their lives in Afghanistan,fighting there under false pretences ( this is all about the Afghanistan gas pipeline) will have ALL died for nothing.


-- Pakistan and Turkmenistan reached a draft agreement on gas from a planned $7.6 billion pipeline, though Islamabad said it was still keen on working with Iran.

"We have struck the deal," said Pakistani Petroleum Minister Asim Hussain of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India natural gas project, Pakistan's Dawn newspaper reported.

The deal would increase plans by Ashgabat to deliver about 1.1 trillion cubic feet of gas each year through the pipeline by about 2 billion cf when it goes into service in the next few years. Both sides agreed to a price that was 69 percent of crude oil more

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