when we all get along
Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
'The USS Liberty': America's Most Shameful Secret
by Eric S. Margolis
NEW YORK – On the fourth day of the 1967 Arab Israeli War, the intelligence ship 'USS Liberty' was steaming slowly in international waters, 14 miles off the Sinai Peninsula. Israeli armored forces were racing deep into Sinai in hot pursuit of the retreating Egyptian army.
'Liberty,' a World War II freighter, had been converted into an intelligence vessel by the top-secret US National Security Agency, and packed with the latest signals and electronic interception equipment. The ship bristled with antennas and electronic 'ears' including TRSSCOMM, a system that delivered real-time intercepts to Washington by bouncing a stream of microwaves off the moon.
'Liberty' had been rushed to Sinai to monitor communications of the belligerents in the Third Arab Israeli War: Israel and her foes, Egypt, Syria, and Jordan.
At 0800 hrs, 8 June, 1967, eight Israeli recon flights flew over 'Liberty,' which was flying a large American flag. At 1400 hrs, waves of low-flying Israeli Mystere and Mirage-III fighter-bombers repeatedly attacked the American vessel with rockets, napalm, and cannon. The air attacks lasted 20 minutes, concentrating on the ship's electronic antennas and dishes. The 'Liberty' was left afire, listing sharply. Eight of her crew lay dead, a hundred seriously wounded, including the captain, Commander William McGonagle.
At 1424 hrs, three Israeli torpedo boats attacked, raking the burning 'Liberty' with 20mm and 40mm shells. At 1431hrs an Israeli torpedo hit the 'Liberty' midship, precisely where the signals intelligence systems were located. Twenty-five more Americans died.
My college dorm mate was one of the four radio operators on duty when the torpedo struck the ship in the compartment directly below the radio room. He can be heard near the beginning of the video: "Everybody in the space I worked in died - except me!"
When the torpedo exploded it tore the floor open in the radio room, killing the other three operators and throwing my dorm mate out the door into the corridor.
We would sit up at night as he told me of the attack. Of how he was in contact with the attacking Israeli pilots, telling them it was an American ship. Of how the planes made several low altitude passes before attacking.
He told me of the cover up of the incident, of how he was sworn to silence, but was refusing to remain silent. This was not an accident as the Israeli and American Governments claimed.
We often sat up late into the night as he dreaded going to sleep, the nightmares were frequent and terrifying, often he would wake up screaming, drenched in sweat.
USS Liberty Memorial Site
Moorer Commission Findings
If Americans Knew - The USS Liberty
USS Liberty Veterans Association Report
Open letter to the United States Congress by the survivors of the USS Liberty
A false flag operation?
Additional Links.....h/t..Big Dan
Sunday, December 28, 2008
The cabin at the start of renovation.
At first it was thought a new door and windows would be all that was needed, however as such projects go, much was to be learned about aged buildings.
Nighttime view from the cabin.
Agent BB2 ponders the project as the work is about to begin.
Agent DLC was at first enlisted to deliver the materials for the reconstruction, however as usual he made a complete ass of himself...
so other more costly measures had to be taken.
The Trafalmadorians were a big help in the construction. Although hideous to look at, they are actually very kind, peace loving characters.
Due to the proximity of Saturn and its strong magnetic fields interacting with the solar wind, static electricity is a constant problem, the solution to which is still being explored.
First on the list of amenities was a new front door.
(The color scheme has yet to be confirmed.)
Then the old bathtub...
was replaced with a fine new soaker.
The sleeping loft was refurbished.
A new sauna and hot tub complete the on-site project...
while nearby a vertical farm is nearing completion...
as is a new spaceport for CONTROL's intergalactic shuttle...
piloted by Jean Luc Picard.
Friday, December 26, 2008
The bed was made of driftwood and old fire hose found upstream, topped with a down sleeping bag. A driftwood table, driftwood chairs and shelving at the rollup windows rounded out the décor.
Two walls were stone, covered in moss, and two walls were driftwood with large rollup windows. The floor was dirt with a large woven rag rug in the center.
A large pot of beans on the stove and some fish from the river kept the tummy happy. The solitude and oneness with nature kept the soul happy.
The hike in and out was rugged. In places the trail clung to the face of a cliff where one false move could be deadly. In other places you were in a position to be excellent cougar bait. Several times deer were found in the middle of the trail, victims of a large cougar that roamed the area. This discouraged frequent trips out to the van which was a good thing since trips out to the van meant trips to the bar.
Evenings were spent reading books by oil lamp, rolling Bugler cigarettes, watching for the skunk that would come and visit or just sitting outside in the dark listening to the river. At times one’s mind would play tricks and you would think you were hearing voices in the river as it echoed off the cliffs.
Days were spent exploring the hillsides and fishing for the next meal. Music was provided by my guitar. My dog, Pepper, was my constant companion and never complained about our living arrangements.
Once a month, a trip out to town would restock the dry beans and rice as well as a fresh supply of yeast and flour for bread. A chicken, some eggs, a slab of bacon, some fruit and veggies would provide a welcome change of diet for several days. Dried salami and a block of cheddar cheese would keep for at least a week.
Oh to be young and carefree again!
UPDATE: The size of the spill is now estimated at 5.4 million cubic yards - over 1 billion gallons!
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Note: the full length videos linked here have been taken down at Youtube. In addition Splashcast has also announced they are stopping the video service I used to create the full length videos here. View the 5 minute introduction video and follow the links to the Sea Shepherd website to keep informed of their latest campaign.
Check back in the summer of 2009 as the latest campaign, currently under way, is broadcast on cable and satellite.
Introduction: Goals and Missions - The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society 5:03
Friday, December 19, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
There is reported evidence that Muntader al-Zaidi is being tortured in jail:
Albaghdadia, the TV channel where the Iraqi Journalist Montather Al-Zeidi works, reports that an Iraqi MP (Ms. Zainab Al-Kanani) informed them that Montather’s hand was broken in jail.
This confirms a lot of reports and rumors about Montather being subject to torture while the Iraqi authorities are interrogating and detaining him in some unspecified location.
Code Pink to stage protest for the release of Muntader al-Zaidi:
The theatrical anti-war group Code Pink plans to gather outside the White House today to protest for the release of the Iraqi journalist who hurled his shoes at President Bush over the weekend.
The activists plan to show up with a "large supply of shoes" in order to show solidarity with Muntader al-Zaidi, who has been in custody since disrupting a weekend press conference with the size-10 projectiles.
It's unclear whether there are plans to actually throw the shoes at the White House, but there's been some discussion of setting up a cardboard cut-out of President Bush and offering prizes to anyone able to knock it over.
It didn't take long for other shoes to drop. Muntazer al-Zaidi, the Iraqi journalist who fastballed his shoes at President George W. Bush in Baghdad over the weekend, remains in custody, but his act of individual protest has feverishly rippled out across the country, sparking uproar in parliament and pride on the streets. The obscure correspondent for al-Baghdadiya, a satellite-TV channel that broadcasts from Cairo, could face from two to seven years' imprisonment for hurling his footwear at the U.S. President and for calling Bush a dog.
Within the above article we learn there is quite a bit of discord within the Iraqi Parliament over the issue:
...the Sadrists, in particular, are keen to exploit the massive public sympathy for the Shi'ite reporter to turn up the heat on Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki over the issue, especially ahead of provincial elections slated for Jan. 31.Well Dah!!!
"The Sadrists were saying 'We are talking about having immunity for foreign troops here while an Iraqi is in prison for insulting a foreigner,'" says Mahmoud Othman, an independent Kurdish lawmaker who attended the session.
More from the illustrious Agent 99 on Muntader al-Zaidi's treatment and apology Here.
Update 2, 12/19/08:
A judge has confirmed that Muntader al-Zaidi has been beaten and is bearing visible evidence of the assault:
BAGHDAD (AP) — The Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at President George W. Bush during a news conference was beaten and had bruises around his eyes and other parts of his face, a judge said Friday.
Judge Dhia al-Kinani, the magistrate investigating the incident, said the court has opened a probe into the alleged beating of journalist Muntadhar al-Zeidi during the news conference.
........Al-Zeidi "was beaten in the news conference and we will watch the tape and write an official letter asking for the names of those who assaulted him," the judge told The Associated Press.
Update 3, 12/21/08
Muntader al-Zaidi is now planning to sue the gaurds who beat him:
"Muntazer has filed a complaint today (Sunday) against those who assaulted him," lawyer Dhiya al-Saadi told AFP, saying those responsible worked for the security forces of Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's media office.
"There are bruises on his body. He has lost a tooth in his upper jaw, and his left eye is bloodshot," the lawyer said, adding that the list of injuries is backed up by medical checks.
More news: Link
Monday, December 15, 2008
"Thanks be to God, Muntazer's act fills Iraqi hearts with pride," his brother, Udai al-Zaidi, told Reuters Television.Link
"I'm sure many Iraqis want to do what Muntazer did. Muntazer used to say all the orphans whose fathers were killed are because of Bush."
Zaidi shouted "this is a goodbye kiss from the Iraqi people, dog," at Bush in a news conference he held with Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki during a farewell visit to Baghdad on Sunday.
The journalist then flung one shoe at Bush, forcing him to duck, followed by another, which sailed over Bush's head and slammed into the wall behind him. Throwing shoes at someone is the worst possible insult in the Arab world.