Judge, jury & executioner?

Could he [Mr. Obama] order the targeted killing of an American citizen [cleric Anwar al-Awlaki], in a country with which the United States was not at war [Yemen], in secret and without the benefit of a trial?

The Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel prepared a lengthy memo justifying that extraordinary step, asserting that while the Fifth Amendment’s guarantee of due process applied, it could be satisfied by internal deliberations in the executive branch.

Mr. Obama gave his approvalSecret Kill List’ Tests Obama’s Principles – NYTimes.com

Yep, judge, jury and executioner.

That used to un-American, not to mention illegal — AND a really bad idea. What happened?

The easiest campaign promise??

Both War Party candidates (Mr. Romney and Mr. Obama) have stumbled all over themselves — and each other — to promise the government of Israel  they won’t let Iran produce a nuclear bomb.

Unless they begin to believe their own propaganda as Kennedy did (which inadvertently fired-up the nuclear arms race between the U.S. and the Soviet Union), it’s the one campaign promise they’ll both be able to easily keep at almost no cost.

Here’s why:

U.S. Defense Sec. Leon Panetta: “Are they [Iranians] trying to develop a nuclear weapon? No.” –Panetta Admits Iran is Not Trying to Develop a Nuclear Weapon, CBS’s “Face The Nation” Jan. 8, 2012

The Buried Lead on Iran: All Nuclear Sites Routinely Inspected, No Violations Antiwar.com

'What intelligent person would fight 5,000 American bombs with one bomb?' Iranian President Ahmadinejad

Iran to Allow Nuclear Inspectors Into Secret Military Complex
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Iran has announced it will allow international nuclear inspectors to visit its secret Parchin military complex. Iran has long said its nuclear program is for civilian purposes only, but some international analysts have speculated Iran may be using the Parchin complex to do research relevant to nuclear weapons. It is not clear when inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency will visit the site. –Democracy NOW! HEADLINES, March 06, 2012

SEYMOUR HERSH: …let me say again, there is no evidence that our intelligence community or even the Israeli intelligence community has — and I know that firsthand — suggesting that there’s an ongoing bomb program. So we are now — the United States is now in the position of increasing sanctions and pressuring all sorts of economic pressure on the Iranians to stop — the whole purpose of the economic sanctions is to stop the Iranians from making a bomb that we know they’re not making. –Training Terrorists in Nevada: Seymour Hersh on U.S. Aid to Iranian Group Tied to Scientist Killings

So everyone, including U.S. and Israeli intelligence, knows that the Iranian government isn’t trying to make a bomb. Unless a seriously careless Iranian scientist slips on a banana peel and pushes the wrong 10,000 buttons in exactly the right sequence, there’s little chance Iran — which, unlike Israel with its estimated 100 secret nukes, has signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty  — will build even one bomb.

How hard can it be to stop someone from doing something they’re not doing? So, is the War Party candidates’ mutual promise to the government of Israel to prevent Iran from producing  a nuclear bomb the easiest campaign promise?

Or, as with Kennedy and the nuclear arms race, Iraq, and now Iran, is THIS the main danger – – –

Little girl's sign: They lied about Iraq

For further information: Common Sense: IRAN: A Medley Against the MIC (MilitaryIndustrialComplex)

The Worst Horror Imaginable

…is to be called an ‘Arab.’ At least that is my take away from the latest Obama ad to appease bigots. In today’s Electronic Intifada, editor Ali Abunimah notes how easily and breezily this slips by the sensible Eastern Establishment censors:

But The Hill fails to note the blatant anti-Arab racism in the ad. It features a clip of an 11 October 2008 exchange at a Minnesota town-hall style campaign event between McCain and a woman in the audience. The exchange can be seen starting 15 seconds into the ad:

WOMAN: “I have heard about him [Obama]. He’s an Arab.”

MCCAIN: “No ma’am, no ma’am, he’s a decent family man, citizen, whom I just happen to have disagreements with.”

If the bigotry contained in the exchange is not obvious, try replacing the word “Arab” with “Jew” and then imagine what the response would have been to how McCain handled it then, and to Obama using it now.

Continue reading “The Worst Horror Imaginable”

Old man with long beard apparently murdered in Abbottabad, Pakistan

OK, this is the first anniversary of the U.S. apparently killing someone with a long beard in Abbottabad, Pakistan. The new spin is that Mr. Obama, making a "gutsy call," took the high-risk course of sending in "boots on the ground" rather than using a drone.

Aside from Mr. Obama being "gutsy" because he told folks to go do something dangerous, well, heck, go jump off a bridge. Now I’M gutsy. Right?

The new spin on why Mr. Obama decided on that high-risk (to someone else) course is that he wanted to be sure they actually got bin Laden. What’s that say about the men, women and children they murder with normal drone strikes?

But never mind, the reason given makes sense — they wanted to be able to prove the guy they murdered really was THE Osama bin Laden. Rather than, say, a body double or case of mistaken identity.

So, then, why did they bury the body at sea where no one could make sure it was THE bin Laden? And why shoot the highest-value information-laden target of all time in the head immediately, before he could talk, especially since he wasn’t armed and didn’t resist. And they still don’t want to release photos because, well – – – – ah – – –

Here for the full story: Barack Obama and the Incredible Flying Spaghetti Monster

D.C. really has to stop cutting back on it’s fiction budget – – –

Was it the promise or was it the SOFA?

On Friday, October 21, 2011, Mr. Obama, invoking one of his campaign promises, announced the complete withdrawal of all U.S. Troops from Iraq by "the [Christian] holidays." Over the weekend, he and his media arm further spun the story, claiming the deadline had been negotiated by G.W. Bush.

Behind the scenes — later paragraphs — we discover that the Pentagon wanted to keep at least 3,000 to 5,000 troops on Iraqi soil. The true number was significantly larger. But they’re all leaving. Why?

It was almost certainly the S.O.F.A., the acronym for "Status Of Forces Agreement."

Obama’s announcement signals that US officials have been unable to negotiate with Iraq’s leaders a renewal of the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) governing the stationing and mission of American troops on Iraqi soil. Pentagon officials in particular, backed by a number of congressional leaders, had called for leaving a force of between 3,000 and 5,000 in Iraq for an extended period. –Iraq withdrawal: With US troops set to exit, 9-year war draws to close – CSMonitor.com

A key provision of any SOFA is exempting occupying soldiers from the laws of the country being occupied. It was this provision that Iraqi negotiators refused to renew. Thus, for example, once the old SOFA expired, U.S. soldiers who killed an Iraqi could be tried for murder under Iraqi law.

The Iraqis, it seems, found the back door to get rid of occupying U.S. troops.

This would likely work in other countries as well.

But that still leaves the drones.