BULLY BOY PRESS & CEDRIC'S BIX MIX -- DC.
ALMOST 4 YEARS AFTER HE BEGAN THE ILLEGAL WAR IN IRAQ, BULLY BOY TODAY WENT TO THE STATE DEPARTMENT -- TODAY -- TO DISCUSS IRAQ OPTIONS AND STRATEGIES.
TODAY. 4 YEARS AFTER THE ILLEGAL WAR BEGAN.
THIS AS THE MOST RECENT CBS POLL FINDS 75% OF AMERICANS DISAPPROVE OF BULLY BOY'S HANDLING OF THE ILLEGAL WAR.
INSIDERS SAY BULLY BOY HAS NO INTENTION OF ACTUALLY DOING ANYTHING OR EVEN LISTENING.
BUT HE SPENT LAST WEEK LAUGHING AS THE SATURATION PRESS COVERAGE OF THE JAMES BAKER CIRCLE JERK ATE UP ALL THE PRESS ATTENTION AND HE LAUGHED AS IT CONTINUES TO DO SO TODAY.
"IT ALLOWS HIM TO AVOID THE REALITIES THAT 42 AMERICAN TROOPS HAVE ALREADY DIED IN IRAQ THIS MONTH," SAID THE INSIDER. "HE'S JUST TOSSING THIS OUT TO KEEP THE JAW BONING ON REPORTS AND POSSIBLITIES AND KEEP IT OFF THE VIOLENCE IN IRAQ."
FROM THE TCI WIRE:
Starting with news from New York, a verdcit has been announced in the free speech trial.
On March 6th, Patti Ackerman, Missy Comley Beattie, Medea Benjamin and Cindy Sheehan were among 100 women attempting to deliver a petition signed by 72,000 people to the United Nations Mission . The delivery should have taken place with no great stir as it did in 2005. The women had contacted the UN Mission, spoken with Peggy Kerry (sister of US Senator John Kerry) and been told she would accept the petition. Then on March 6th, Peggy Sheehan decided she couldn't stand the sight of peace and Cindy Sheehan or what she termed "the gaggle" of press present accomanying the women so she did what any unhinged, morally corrupt person would do and went back on her word by refusing the petition and calling in law enforcement. Missy Comley Beattie, Cindy Sheehan, Patti Ackerman and Medea Benjamin were arrested and charged with obstructing government business, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct, and trespassing.
Last week, the trial began on the fourth floor of the 100 Centre Street, Manhattan court room and was most notable for Bitter, Bitter, Bitter, Bitter, Peggy Pooh's court testimony was deemed "combative" by the AP. Clearly the years had not been kind and Pegs Kerry was apparently determined to grab the national attention she'd always courted but never received (for obvious reason). Snarling on the witness stand about how she'd been wronged by not being informed that Cindy Sheehan would be among the women (apparently Pegs allergy to peace requires that every group dropping off a petition provided an active roster of who may or may not be attending), Pegs got her moment and is now dealing with the fallout she never expected -- being the new Bay Buchanan isn't as easy as it looked.
On Friday afternoon, the jury went into deliberations. This morning they returned a verdict.
AP reports the jury dismissed three charges but did convict Medea Benjamin, Patti Ackerman, Cindy Sheehan and Missy Comley Beattie of trespassing. The women were ordered to pay $95 in court costs and could face imprisonment if arrested in the next * six months.* Bitter, Bitter, Bitter, Bitter Peggy Pooh? She's sentenced herself to her own personal hell and while she attempts to tell friends some sort of "Both Sides Now" excuse the reality is she will continued to be "looking strange" and social pariah is own sentencing.
CNN reports that Cindy Sheehan, Missy Comley Beattie, Patti Ackerman and Medea Benjamin delivered the petition today after they left the court room and it was accepted by
the apparently less pry shy and less peace allergic Pegs and UN Mission director of extermal affairs Richard A. Grenell. CNN quotes Sheehan stating: "We should never have been on trial in the first place. It's George Bush and his cronies who should be on trial, not peaceful women trying to stop this devastating war. This verdict, however, will not stop us from continuing to work tirelessly to bring our troops home."
The petition was calling for an end to the war and as it drags on still, the number of US troops killed in Iraq this month stands at 42. Yesterday, the US military announced: " An improvised explosive device detonated near a Multi-National Division - Baghdad patrol, killing one Soldier west of the Iraqi capital Dec. 10. As the patrol was finishing its early morning security mission west of the city, the roadside bomb detonated killing one Soldier and wounding another." Today, the US military also announced that "A Marine Corps CH-53e Super Stallion helicopter . . . executed a hard landing at approximately 12:00 p.m. . . . in the Al Anbar Province" and "Marines in the area secured the landing site shortly after the" crash landing that left 18 of the 21 on board the helicopter injured "with 9 treated for minor injuries and returned to duty" which translates as nine were injured so badly that they are unable at present to return to duty (but the announcement doesn't translate the obvious). CBS and AP note the crash landing "was the third U.S. military aircraft to go down in the province in two weeks."
[. . .]
While the violence, like the war, continues, some attempt to end the war. This weekend,
Courage to Resist held national days of action across the country in support of US war resisters. Cecilia M. Vega (San Franciso Chronicle) reports that US war resister Darrell Anderson spoke to a crowd in San Franciso Saturday in front of the War Memorial Veterans Building where he declared that "Action is the only thing that's going to stop this war." Vega reports that war resister Kyle Snyder was unable to attend the event following Friday's Alameda event where police were looking for him after being tipped off by "somebody in Kentucky" so, instead, Synder called in and delivered a speech that way.
The police were looking for Kyle Snyder because there is a warrant for his arrest. Returning the United States in April of 2005 from Iraq, Snyder self-checked out while on leave and went to Canada. In October of this year he returned to the US after working out an agreement with the military and, on October 31st, turned himself in at Fort Knox only to self-check out again when the military refused to live up to the agreement. Since then, a warrant has been issued for Snyder's arrest as he has continued to speak out against the illegal war. He spent Thanksgiving week in New Orleans doing reconstruction to areas destroyed by Hurricane Katrina and still not repaired. Currently, he is on a West coast tour speaking out against the war. Last Thursday, on KPFA's Flashpoints, Nora Barrows-Friedman interviewed Snyder.
Saturday, on RadioNation with Laura Flanders, Flanders interviewed Carolyn Ho, mother of Ehren Watada who became the first commissioned officer to refuse to deploy to the illegal war in June of this year. A court-martial is scheduled for Watada in February.
Carolyn Ho told Flanders that her son refused deployment because it wasn't an individual issue, he would be responsible not only for himself but for those serving under him. Ho stated she would be appealing to Congress to intervene noting that they have yet to conduct their promised investigation into the war (and the lies that led to it) but a military court will decide in February whether or not her son had a right to refuse to serve in an illegal war. Ho also appealed for people and groups to contact their Congressional representatives and ask that Congress perform the oversight function they have thus far failed today. (This is covered in greater detail at The Third Estate Sunday Review and an archived broadcast of Flanders' program will go up by Wednesday for those who missed it.)
Today, Carolyn Ho appeared on Democracy Now! and told Amy Goodman that she'd met with several members of Congress and been largely rebuffed with the excuse that it's not Congress' job. US representative Maxine Waters was the only one who told Ho she would have her staff examine the issue.
Anderson, Snyder and Watada are not three resisters within the military standing alone. This is a movement of resistance that also includes Joshua Key, Ivan Brobeck, Ricky Clousing, Mark Wilkerson, Camilo Meija, Pablo Paredes, Carl Webb, Stephen Funk, David Sanders, Dan Felushko, Brandon Hughey, Jeremy Hinzman, Corey Glass, Patrick Hart, Clifford Cornell, Agustin Aguayo, Joshua Despain, Katherine Jashinski, and Kevin Benderman.
Information on this movement of war resistance within the military can be found at Center on Conscience & War, The Objector, The G.I. Rights Hotline, and the War Resisters Support Campaign. Courage to Resist offers information on all public war resisters. Appeal for Redress is collecting signatures of active duty service members calling on Congress to bring the troops home -- the petition will be delivered to Congress next month.
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