- Peace Garden: 04/01/2008 - 05/01/2008

Here we go...

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Carrier Reminder
The U.S. Navy has temporarily added a second aircraft carrier in the Gulf as a “reminder” to Iran, but this was not an escalation of American forces in the region, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said on Tuesday.
“This deployment has been planned for a long time,” Gates said. “I don’t think we’ll have two carriers there for a protracted period of time. So I don’t see it as an escalation. I think it could be seen, though, as a reminder.”
Or maybe a safeguard as Israel prepares to bomb Iran
The commander of the Israeli Air Force says the regime’s decision makers have been preparing plans to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities. General Eliezer Shkedi, who also heads the Israeli task force on Iran, made the remarks in an interview with “60 Minutes” on Sunday. A large portion of Shkedi’s service has been dedicated to the preparation for a possible mission that was never discussed in public; an Israeli strike on Iranian nuclear facilities, should international economic sanctions fail, Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported on Monday.

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SHAME - II!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Obama says will back Petraeus for new military job
Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama, who has called for withdrawing U.S. combat troops from Iraq, said Sunday he will vote to confirm the top commander there for a new job as head of the military's Central Command.
With Petraus in the new position we may just see an Iranian front open up. Disgusting II!

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SHAME!

House Democrats Look To Fund War Through 2009
House Democratic leaders are putting together the largest Iraq war spending bill yet, a measure that is expected to fund the war through the end of the Bush presidency and for nearly six months into the next president’s term. The bill, which could be unveiled as early as this week, signals that Democrats are resigned to the fact they can’t change course in Iraq in the final months of President Bush’s term. Instead, the party is pinning its hopes of ending the war on winning the White House in November.
Disgusting!

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Which is it: Iran or Syria?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

U.S: Syria must 'come clean' on nukes
The White House said Thursday that North Korea did secret work on a nuclear reactor with Syria, calling it "a dangerous and potentially destabilizing development for the world" and raising doubts about Pyongyang's intention to carry through with a promised disclosure of its nuclear activities. Seven months after Israel bombed the site, the White House broke its silence and said North Korea assisted Syria in a secret nuclear program and that the destroyed facility was not intended for "peaceful purposes."
Sure, it was taken out by Israel. But this talk raises the question, who's next? Do we bomb Iran or Syria? Could W, Uncle Dick and Petraus be thinking of hitting both at the same time?

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Where is al-Sadr?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Rice frames al-Sadr as coward in Iran 
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice mocked anti-American cleric Muqtada al-Sadr as a coward yesterday, hours after the radical leader threatened to declare war unless U.S. and Iraqi forces end a military crackdown on his followers.
Miss Rice, in the Iraqi capital to tout security gains and what she calls an emerging political consensus, said Sheik al-Sadr is content to issue threats and edicts from the safety of Iran, where he is studying. Sheik al-Sadr heads an unruly militia that was the main target of an Iraqi government assault in the oil-rich city of Basra last month, and his future role as a spoiler is an open question. "I know he's sitting in Iran," Miss Rice said dismissively, when asked about Sheik al-Sadr's latest threat to lift a self-imposed cease-fire with government and U.S. forces. "I guess it's all-out war for anybody but him," Miss Rice said. "I guess that's the message; his followers can go to their deaths and he's in Iran."
Condi, we heard you the first time. You think he is in Iran. How many times will you say it? Oh, I forgot you are, along with the others, trying to set the stage for an attack. Sorry, I forgot that Iran was the Evil Empire. Hey, has the evidence that Iran caused Katrina been released yet?

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Before November...

Gates calls Iran 'hell bent' on getting nuclear arms

Defense Secretary Robert Gates said he believes Iran is "hell bent" on acquiring nuclear weapons, but he warned in strong terms of the consequences of going to war over that. "Another war in the Middle East is the last thing we need and, in fact, I believe it would be disastrous on a number of levels," he said in a speech he was delivering Monday evening at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y.
"But we won't let disaster stop us. Let's start the war before the elections in November. That way we'll have our war no matter who wins. In the end we will win - at least the stockholders and investors in Blackwater, Halliburton, GE..."

Okay you caught me. He really didn't say it, but I am sure he was thinking it.

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McCain-Clinton: What a team.

Hillary seems to be channeling McCain...

"I want the Iranians to know that if I'm the president, we will attack Iran," Clinton said. "In the next 10 years, during which they might foolishly consider launching an attack on Israel, we would be able to totally obliterate them."
Obliterate? Sounds like she is ready to push that dreaded nuclear button.

She made a mistake with her votes on Iraq and Iran. A mistake with the button is far more deadly and "obliterating."

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Pointing the finger...

Monday, April 21, 2008

Iran groups offering extra aid to Iraq rebels

A US general said on Sunday that the increasingly sophisticated attacks carried out by Shiite extremists in Iraq were evidence they were getting extra aid from Iranian groups in the country. Major General Rick Lynch, commander of US forces in central Iraq, said rocket and mortar attacks by Shiite extremists were "more effective than before". This he charged indicated a rise in Iranian help to the militants.
"We are seeing an increase in (Iranian) influence ... the number of attacks that are directly attributed to Iranian influence have indeed increased," Lynch said.
Lynch also talked about Moqtada al-Sadr
A top US general on Sunday warned that the military would strike back after hardline Iraqi Shiite leader Moqtada al-Sadr threatened to launch a new uprising by his militia. "I hope Moqtada al-Sadr continues to depress violence and not encourage it," said Major General Rick Lynch, commander of US forces in central Iraq.
"If Sadr and Jaish al-Mahdi (Mahdi Army) become very aggressive, we've got enough combat power to take the fight to the enemy," Lynch told a group of reporters from Western news networks.
Wait for it....wait for it...hear it? Tie together the two articles....Damn, let's take out Iran.

Scary isn't it? We just have a few more months to worry about...but who takes over W's spot? Let's hope sanity takes over and Congress finds some spine.

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Methane - not good!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Thawing Arctic Could Set Off Methane Climate Bomb
Climate scientists meeting this week in Vienna are contemplating a terrible prospect—the release of billions of tons of methane gas from the Arctic Ocean, Der Spiegel reports. Methane, 20 times more damaging to the atmosphere than carbon dioxide, lies frozen in gas hydrates on the ocean floor, but rising global temperatures are loosening the ice’s grip.
Research has confirmed both that the methane-containing permafrost is warmer than it should be, and that water and air above the deposits are unusually saturated with methane. If released, the 540 billion tons of methane in the Arctic could drastically speed global warming, but, explains a researcher, "no one can say right now whether that will take years, decades or hundreds of years."
Wonder what Rush and the global warming debunkers will say about this? How much more of the story do we need until we start making some changes to - not so much to save the Earth - but to save our asses?

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Get to the real issues...

An Open Letter to Charlie Gibson and George Stephanapoulos

You implied throughout the broadcast that you wanted to reflect the concerns of voters in Pennsylvania. Well, I’m a Pennsylvanian voter, and so are my neighbors and most of my friends and co-workers. You asked virtually nothing that reflected our everyday issues — trying to fill our gas tanks and save for college at the same time, our crumbling bridges and inadequate mass transit, or the root causes of crime here in Philadelphia. In fact, there almost isn’t enough space — and this is cyberspace, where room is unlimited — to list all the things you could have asked about but did not, from health care to climate change to alternative energy to our policy toward China to the deterioration of Afghanistan to veterans’ benefits to improving education. You ignored virtually everything that just happened in what most historians agree is one of the worst presidencies in American history, including the condoning of torture and the trashing of the Constitution, although to be fair you also ignored the policy concerns of people on the right, like immigration issues.
Here’s a question for you, George. Is it true that yesterday you appeared on the radio with conservative talk radio host Sean Hannity, and that you said you were “taking notes” when he urged you to ask a question about Obama’s supposed ties to a former member of the Weather Underground — which in fact you did. With all the fabulous resources of ABC News at your disposal, is that an appropriate way for a supposed journalist to come up with debate questions, by pandering to divisive radio shows?
uickly, a word to any and all of my fellow journalists who happen to read this open letter. This. Must . Stop. Tonight, if possible. I thought that we had hit rock bottom in March 2003, when we failed to ask the tough questions in the run-up to the Iraq war. But this feels even lower. We need to pick ourselves up, right now, and start doing our job — to take a deep breath and remind ourselves of what voters really need to know, and how we get there, that’s it’s not all horserace and “gotcha.” Although, to be blunt, I would also urge the major candidates in 2012 to agree only to debates that are organized by the League of Women Voters, with citizen moderators and questioners. Because we have proven without a doubt in 2008 that working journalists don’t deserve to be the debate “deciders.”
Charlie, I’m going to sign off this letter the way that you always sign off the news, that “I hope you had a great day.”
Because America just had a horrible night.
I admit that on the way home I listen to Hannity. It is good to know how the inane crazies are thinking. Watching last night made me look around - I thought I was on Rte. 15 fighting traffic. Closing my eyes I could hear Sean and Rush and the like feeding those questions to those two - were they wearing earpieces?

Georgie - next time spend more time on Iraq, Iran, global warming, the economy, diplomacy, Darfur, the environment, health care..... Those are the issues that really matter.

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Peak Oil and War

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Coming War with Iran: It’s About the Oil, Stupid
World civilization is based on oil. The world is running out of oil. The oil companies and governments are not telling the truth about how close we are to the end. Dick Cheney knew about peak oil back in 1999 when he spoke to the London Petroleum Institute as Halliburton CEO. He predicted it would come in 2010. After that it’s just a matter of years before it runs out. Whoever controls the remaining oil determines who lives and who dies. Sixty percent of this oil is under a triangular area of the Middle East the size of Kansas. In that speech Cheney said: “The Middle East with two thirds of the world’s oil and the lowest cost, is still where the prize ultimately lies.”
It’s been known for at least thirty years that America needs alternative energy sources. But instead of an alternative energy plan we got the invasion of Iraq by oilmen wedded to a dying business, willing to kill hundreds of thousands to cling to the last drop. The US is never leaving the region or withdrawing from Iraq. McCain is right about staying, but 100 years is too long. The oil won’t last that long. Iran is next. Lieberman set up Petraeus to testify last week that Iranian-backed groups are murdering hundreds of American servicemen in Iraq. On Friday Gates called Iran’s influence in Iraq “malign” and Bush said if Iran keeps meddling in Iraq “then we’ll deal with them.” They are building their case for war with resolutions in the Senate and at the UN. It’s only western Iran, from the Iraq border to 150 miles inside the country that the U.S. will have to occupy. That’s where Iran’s oil is. But the U.S. will have a nasty battle on their hands in Iran even if they restore a Shah-like puppet in Tehran 30 years after the revolution.
It’s not about greed any more. It’s about survival. Because the leadership of this country was initially too greedy to switch from oil to solar, wind, geothermal and other renewable alternatives, it may now be too late. Had the hundreds of billions of dollars poured into the invasion and occupation of Iraq been put into alternative energy the world might have had a fighting chance. Now that is far from certain. What is certain is that these wars are not about democracy. They are not about WMD. The coming one will not even be about Iran’s nuclear weapons project. It’s about the oil, stupid.
Catch that name in the article - my buddy - W's kissing cousin - Joey. His bloody hands are interested in the Final Days as well.

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Stop him - please!

Iran - The New Motivation for US War in Iraq

The US rationale for war in Iraq has morphed from ousting strongman Saddam Hussein, to countering Al-Qaeda militants to its latest incarnation — facing down what officials in President George W. Bush’s administration call the Iranian “threat”. “Iraq is the convergence point for two of the greatest threats to America in this new century: Al-Qaeda and Iran,” Bush said last week, renewing accusations that the Islamic republic is backing Iraqi militias hostile to US forces and covertly seeking nuclear weapons.

With Saddam dead and Al-Qaeda weakened — according to Bush — Iranian-financed extremists, which top US commander in Iraq David Petraeus has called “special groups,” have emerged as a key reason for maintaining US troop levels in Iraq.

Or a reason to lob a few missiles over the border.

Someone please stop W before he "officially" sends in troops for some crazy messianic reason. ("Officially" since black-ops are already there!)

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Worse off?

Friday, April 11, 2008

In Al Gore's brand-new slideshow (premiering exclusively on TED.com), he presents evidence that the pace of climate change may be even worse than scientists were recently predicting, and challenges us to act with a sense of "generational mission" -- the kind of feeling that brought forth the civil rights movement -- to set it right. Gore's stirring presentation is followed by a brief Q&A in which he is asked for his verdict on the current political candidates' climate policies and on what role he himself might play in future.

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Earth in peril...

Monday, April 07, 2008

.... more accurately: human life in peril!
Climate Target Is Not Radical Enough
One of the world’s leading climate scientists warns today that the EU and its international partners must urgently rethink targets for cutting carbon dioxide in the atmosphere because of fears they have grossly underestimated the scale of the problem.
In a startling reappraisal of the threat, James Hansen, head of the Nasa Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, calls for a sharp reduction in C02 limits.
Hansen says the EU target of 550 parts per million of C02 - the most stringent in the world - should be slashed to 350ppm. He argues the cut is needed if “humanity wishes to preserve a planet similar to that on which civilisation developed”.
The revised target is likely to prompt criticism that he is setting the bar unrealistically high. With the US administration still acting as a drag on international efforts, climate campaigners are struggling even to get a 450ppm target to stick. Hansen said his findings were not a recipe for despair. The good news, he said, is that reserves of fossil fuels have been exaggerated, so an alternative source of energy will have to be rapidly put in place in any case.

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War Drums in Congress

Petraeus Testimony May Signal Iran Attack - by Paul Craig Roberts
On April 5, the London Telegraph reported that "British officials gave warning yesterday that America's commander in Iraq will declare that Iran is waging war against the U.S.-backed Baghdad government. A strong statement from Gen. David Petraeus about Iran's intervention in Iraq could set the stage for a U.S. attack on Iranian military facilities, according to a Whitehall assessment."
The neocon lackey Petraeus has had his script written for him by Cheney, and Petraeus together with neocon warmonger Ryan Crocker, the U.S. governor of the Green Zone in Baghdad, will present Congress next Tuesday and Wednesday with the lies, for which the road has been well paved by neocon propagandists such as Kimberly Kagan, that "the U.S. must recognize that Iran is engaged in a full-up proxy war against it in Iraq."
Don't expect Congress to do anything except to egg on the attack.
It has been building for so long. You can see it in the eyes of the regime - attack! They were patient but their timetable is now up against an election. Act now before November!

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We need a playbook

Friday, April 04, 2008

Al Qaeda #2: We'll Attack Iran
In a long-promised online Q&A session, Zawahiri says it would be "in the interest" of Al-Qaeda to see Iran "sap[ped]" by a fight with the United States. Moreover, he seems to promise that the extremist collective will "battle" whoever wins that U.S.-Iran struggle.
Let's get this straight. Al Qaeda is our enemy. Iran is our enemy. Al Qaeda and Iran are enemies. I guess this disproves the saying: The enemy of my enemy is my friend. At least as far as W and regime see it.

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If they declare war...

... and no one shows...

More Than 1,000 in Iraq’s Forces Quit Basra Fight

More than 1,000 Iraqi soldiers and policemen either refused to fight or simply abandoned their posts during the inconclusive assault against Shiite militias in Basra last week, a senior Iraqi government official said Thursday. Iraqi military officials said the group included dozens of officers, including at least two senior field commanders in the battle.
The desertions in the heat of a major battle cast fresh doubt on the effectiveness of the American-trained Iraqi security forces. The White House has conditioned further withdrawals of American troops on the readiness of the Iraqi military and police. The crisis created by the desertions and other problems with the Basra operation was serious enough that Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki hastily began funneling some 10,000 recruits from local Shiite tribes into his armed forces.

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Simple solution - End The War

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Democrats undecided how to end war
Democratic leaders returned from their spring break this week to declare that Iraq is in turmoil and that they will continue to try to force President Bush to end the war. But facing another uphill battle, party members are undecided on whether to try to cut off money or take a softer approach that is more likely to succeed. They will have to decide soon. Congress has approved only $86.7 billion of the Bush administration's $196.4 billion request for war spending this budget year, which began Oct. 1. Most of the money is required by the military, which says it is about $102.5 billion short and will run out this spring.
End the war. Bring back the Constitution. Get some backbone and hear what the public is saying!

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No More

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

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