Nov 13 2008
With government aid sporadic or non-existent, survivors of the October 29 6.4-magnitude earthquake that rocked the impoverished Pakistani province of Baluchistan are receiving assistance from local Islamist groups, some of which the US has condemned as “terrorist organizations.” Within hours of the quake, people from Jamaat-ud-Dawa–condemned by the US as the political wing of the Kashmiri liberation and alleged “Al Qaeda associated” outfit Laskhar-e-Taiba–were distributing blankets, food, milk, and biscuits, promising to return soon with tents, and pledging to construct 1000 temporary homes.
Through 2007, the Bush administration had awarded Pakistan more than $10 billion in overt War-on-Terra military aid, and an estimated additional $5 billion in covert funds. To assist the tens of thousands of Pakistanis injured and displaced by the October 29 quake, in danger of freezing to death or perishing of sickness in the frigid winter air, the Bush administration has ponied up . . . $1 million. Or approximately four to six times the suspected amount Sarah Palin recently spent on clothes, accessories, jewelry, luggage, and spray-on tans for herself, her husband, and her five-child brood.
Feb 19 2008
The UK continues to pay for timorous Tony Blair’s white-livered decision to debase his nation as George II’s quivering lapdog.
One debt will be collected by Lofti Raissi, a British resident who last week won the right to seek monetary damages from the UK, as compensation for his groundless arrest and incarceration, on American orders, during the disgraceful Anglo-American overreaction to the attacks of September 11.
Three senior British judges held that the British government impermissibly used “unsubstantiated allegations” in a US extradition warrant “as a device to circumvent the rule of English law.”
Raissi, wholly innocent, was held in maximum-security confinement for six months, where he was twice stabbed by other inmates, while his name was foamingly bruited about in the shrieking British tabloids as a slavering 9/11 arch-fiend.
The court concluded that, to poodle up to the Americans, British police and prosecutors abused the legal process, filed false allegations, and concealed evidence, and thus Raissi may seek up to 2 million pounds in damages.
“I always say Britain is a civilised country with beautiful people,” Raissi said. “I really cherish the customs, the way of life here. But after 9/11, things changed.”
Raissi’s ordeal, below the divide.
Feb 15 2008
The rough beast that is George W. Bush–gaze blank and pitiless as the sun–is today slouching towards the continent of Africa, pronouncing “paternalism  a thing of the past,” and decreeing that henceforth the peoples of Africa must, for the greater good of global capital, be pitchforked into The New World Order. For Africa, so sayeth the beast, “joint venturing with good, capable people is what the future is all about.”
Fantastically, the people who put the words into George II’s mouth have, with the text of his African address, admitted that the interests of the people of Africa must be subsumed in those of global capital (headquartered, natch, in the USA). They are echoing, in Bushspeak, what the exiled Kenyan writer Ngugi wa Thiong’o so artfully expressed two years ago in his work The Wizard of the Crow.
Side-by-side comparisons of the words of the wizard, and of the beast, below the divide.
Jan 26 2008
Mark Twain, among his many other gifts, seems to have been something of a seer.
While perusing a collection titled The Bible According to Mark Twain (primarily devoted to excoriating the god of Abraham), I came across an unpublished piece of Twain’s, written in 1901, that seems to perfectly encapsulate the state of the nation, as we prepare to move from the reigns of George I, Clinton I, and George II, to that of Clinton II.
Twain’s text below the fold:
Dec 10 2007
(cross-posted from kos at buhdy’s request; thanks for all the recs, dd people!)
We know that one of the two destroyed CIA interrogation tapes documented the torture of Abu Zubaydah.
We know that Zubaydah was no “high-value” Al Qaeda operative, but an “insane, certifiable” gofer. We know that when this truth was conveyed to George II, his response was to personally press the CIA to pursue further “information extraction.” We know that Zubaydah provided no actionable intelligence, but that his desperate attempts to placate his torturers may have resulted in US-directed “dark side” operations that killed innocent people. And we know that George II, aware of all this, has nonetheless persisted in attributing an increasingly important role to Zubaydah as both Al Qaeda fiend, and key to “cracking” the 9/11 plot.
We can assume, then, that the tape documenting Zubaydah’s interrogation was destroyed not only because of the monstrous nature of the torture techniques inflicted upon him. It likewise represented a dangerous lever, one that could have toppled the tower of lies that BushCo has erected upon the tormented mind and tortured body of Abu Zubaydah.
It could have exposed the truth. That what has been done to this man may be the filthiest, most outrageous act committed by an administration that has redefined, in our name, filth and outrage.
Oct 19 2007
This morning I turned on the Grand Poobah of GOoPerdom himself, Rush Limbaugh, and was extremely discomfited to find myself nodding along in agreement, disconsolately reduced to mumbling, in the words of Limbaugh’s own blowharding bumpersticker, “Rush Is Right.”
I reproduce the relevant portions of his monologue below, because I want desperately to be wrong about this. I would like someone, anyone, to show me that, in the substance if not the rhetoric of what he says, Rush is not, in fact, right.