organization:bush administration

  • Why did Bush go to war in Iraq? | Iraq | Al Jazeera
    https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/bush-war-iraq-190318150236739.html

    My investigation into the causes of the war finds that it had little to do with fear of WMDs - or other purported goals, such as a desire to “spread democracy” or satisfy the oil or Israel lobbies. Rather, the Bush administration invaded Iraq for its demonstration effect.

    A quick and decisive victory in the heart of the Arab world would send a message to all countries, especially to recalcitrant regimes such as Syria, Libya, Iran, or North Korea, that American hegemony was here to stay. Put simply, the Iraq war was motivated by a desire to (re)establish American standing as the world’s leading power.


  • Vice: A portrait of an American corporate-military gangster - World Socialist Web Site
    https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/12/29/vice-d29.html

    Vice: A portrait of an American corporate-military gangster
    By David Walsh and Joanne Laurier
    29 December 2018

    Written and directed by Adam McKay

    In May 2006, referring to #Dick_Cheney, the WSWS observed that if ever there were “an individual who personifies contempt for democratic rights, it is the American vice president.” Universally recognized as the most powerful holder of that office in US history, Cheney “has been the official most identified with the Bush administration’s policies of military aggression, domestic spying, government secrecy, and torture, and its wholesale assault on the US Constitution.”

    The WSWS article went to explain that the Bush-Cheney cabal had systematically erected “the framework for a police state in America over the past five years, while repudiating international law and asserting the right to wage unprovoked wars and kidnap, torture and murder anyone—including US citizens—whom it designates as an ‘enemy combatant’.”

    #armement #complexe_militaro_industriel


  • Nancy Pelosi and Israel: Just how hawkish is the likely next speaker of the house? - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    Plus pro-israélien, on ne peut pas imaginer ! la probable future présidente de la chambre des représentants

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/nancy-pelosi-and-israel-why-the-house-s-pro-israel-stance-is-unlikely-to-ch

    Pelosi has also held staunchly pro-Israel views that have at times even out flanked the GOP from the right.
    In 2005, while addressing AIPAC, Pelosi had waxed poetic about her personal experiences in Israel and how they shaped her views: “This spring, I was in Israel as part of a congressional trip that also took us to Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq. One of the most powerful experiences was taking a helicopter toward Gaza, over the path of the security fence. We set down in a field that belonged to a local kibbutz. It was a cool but sunny day, and the field was starting to bloom with mustard. Mustard is a crop that grows in California, and it felt at that moment as if I were home.”
    Pelosi, who was the 52nd Speaker of the House, previously served from 2007 to 2011 in the position which coincided with the 2008-2009 Israel-Gaza war known as Operation Cast Lead. In 2009, Pelosi sponsored a resolution that passed the House by a 390-5 majority blaming the Palestinian side for the violence and reaffirming U.S. support for Israel and a peaceful resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
    The resolution quoted then Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who said in 2008, “We strongly condemn the repeated rocket and mortar attacks against Israel and hold Hamas responsible for breaking the cease-fire and for the renewal of violence there.”
    Stephen Zunes, author and professor of Middle Eastern Studies at the University of San Francisco, pointed out at the time that the language in the House decision was even to the right of the Bush administration, which supported the UN Security Council resolution condemning “all acts of violence and terror directed against civilians” - the congressional resolution only condemns the violence and terror of Hamas.
    Pelosi’s resolution also called for “the immediate release of the kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who has been illegally held in Gaza since June 2006.”
    The Shalit kidnapping was a personal issue for Pelosi, who in 2008, while meeting with then Israeli Knesset speaker Dalia Itzik, held up dog tags of three Israeli soldiers kidnapped in 2006.  Two of them belonged to Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev, whose bodies were repatriated to Israel earlier that year. The third belonged to Gilad Shalit, who at the time was still believed to be held by Hamas in Gaza. Shalit was famously freed in 2011 as part of a prisoner exchange deal.
    Pelosi said she kept them as a “symbol of the sacrifices made, sacrifices far too great by the people of the state of Israel.”
    However, she hasn’t always been been on the right side of the pro-Israel divide. In 2014 Pelosi was criticized for suggesting Hamas is a humanitarian organization. On CNN she said, “And we have to confer with the Qataris, who have told me over and over again that Hamas is a humanitarian organization.” The host of the segment Candy Crowley then interrupted her to ask, “The U.S. thinks they’re a terrorist organization though, correct? Do you?” Pelosi responded with, “Mmm hmm.”
    After receiving a lashing from the likes of Megyn Kelly on Fox News and The Republican Jewish Coalition Matthew Brook, Pelosi’s office released a statement, “As Leader Pelosi reiterated in her CNN interview, Hamas is a terrorist organization.”
    Pelosi was also a vocal critic of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to a joint session of the U.S. Congress denouncing then-President Obama’s nuclear deal, which she supported.
    After the speech she released a very harshly worded condemnation saying, “That is why, as one who values the U.S. – Israel relationship, and loves Israel, I was near tears throughout the prime minister’s speech – saddened by the insult to the intelligence of the United States as part of the P5 +1 nations, and saddened by the condescension toward our knowledge of the threat posed by Iran and our broader commitment to preventing nuclear proliferation.”
    Pelosi, who was endorsed this week by J Street in her bid for speaker, addressed the 2017 AIPAC Policy Conference by reading a J Street-backed letter, which was signed by 191 members of Congress, mostly Democrats, urging U.S. President Donald Trump to support a two-state solution.
    “As strong supporters of Israel, we write to urge you to reaffirm the United States’ long-standing, bipartisan commitment to supporting a just and lasting two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” Pelosi said.
    “It is our belief that a one-state outcome risks destroying Israel’s Jewish and democratic character, denies the Palestinians fulfillment of their legitimate aspirations, and would leave both Israelis and Palestinians embroiled in an endless and intractable conflict for generations to come,” she continued.
    Pelosi, at 78, represents the Democratic establishment’s traditional position on Israel, coupling unwavering support for Israeli defense and the two-state solution for peace between Israel and Palestinians, a bipartisan position that courts both AIPAC and J Street and doesn’t diverge too far from that of centrist Republicans. Unlike some new members of her caucus who criticize Israel for “occupying” the West Bank or for human rights abuses, Pelosi reservers her criticism only for Israeli leaders or policies she disagrees with, most prominently Netanyahu.


  • Egypt and Qatar working on long-term ceasefire, Hamas disarmament plans for Gaza - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-egypt-qatar-working-on-long-term-ceasefire-hamas-disarmament-in-ga

    According to diplomatic sources in Israel, Egypt seeks to promote reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah, expand the Palestinian Authority’s role in the Gaza Strip, initiate economic relief and arrange for the gradual dismantling of the Hamas military wing. Qatar is proposing that an unaffiliated council of experts manage the Gaza Strip, a halt to Hamas arming itself with offensive weapons and getting international organizations involved to monitor the process. Nickolay Mladenov, the United Nations’ special coordinator for the Mideast Peace Process, is trying to organize a new regional forum that will include Israel, Egypt, the PA and the UN to create and operate a long-term aid mechanism for the Strip.

    From Israel’s perspective, the gaps with Hamas are too great to bridge at the moment. Israel is concerned that a “Hezbollah model” could emerge in the Gaza Strip, in which Hamas keeps its weapons while the PA takes responsibility for managing civilian issues. It is also skeptical about international monitoring mechanisms to prevent arms smuggling, which failed in an agreement brokered by the Bush administration after the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza in 2005.
    Yahya Sinwar, the Hamas leader in the Gaza Strip and the organization’s current strongman, gave a rare interview Wednesday to the Al Jazeera network. Sinwar, who spent more than 20 years in Israeli prisons for murdering Palestinians who cooperated with Israel, was singing a new tune. He announced that Hamas had reached an understanding with Egypt that the demonstrations along the border with Israel would continue but would not deteriorate into a military confrontation. He then praised the “popular nonviolent struggle,” a new position coming from a man who for years headed Hamas’ military wing, which fired rockets at and dug tunnels into Israeli territory.


  • Opinion | Fifteen Years Ago, America Destroyed My Country - The New York Times
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/19/opinion/iraq-war-anniversary-.html

    Par Sinan Antoon

    I left Iraq a few months after the 1991 Gulf War and went to graduate school in the United States, where I’ve been ever since. In 2002, when the cheerleading for the Iraq war started, I was vehemently against the proposed invasion. The United States had consistently supported dictators in the Arab world and was not in the business of exporting democracy, irrespective of the Bush administration’s slogans. I recalled sitting in my family’s living room with my aunt when I was a teenager, watching Iraqi television and seeing Donald Rumsfeld visiting Baghdad as an emissary from Ronald Reagan and shaking hands with Saddam. That memory made Mr. Rumsfeld’s words in 2002 about freedom and democracy for Iraqis seem hollow. Moreover, having lived through two previous wars (the Iran-Iraq war of 1980 to 1988 and the Gulf War of 1991), I knew that the actual objectives of war were always camouflaged by well-designed lies that exploit collective fear and perpetuate national myths.

    #Irak #crimes #Etats-Unis


  • I Helped Sell the False Choice of War Once. It’s Happening Again. - The New York Times
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/05/opinion/trump-iran-war.html

    Wilkerson encore (en attendant son retour au pouvoir)

    Fifteen years ago this week, #Colin_Powell, then the secretary of state, spoke at the United Nations to sell pre-emptive war with Iraq. As his chief of staff, I helped Secretary Powell paint a clear picture that war was the only choice, that when “we confront a regime that harbors ambitions for regional domination, hides weapons of mass destruction and provides haven and active support for terrorists, we are not confronting the past, we are confronting the present. And unless we act, we are confronting an even more frightening future.”

    Following Mr. Powell’s presentation on that cold day, I considered what we had done. At the moment, I thought all our work was for naught — and despite his efforts we did not gain substantial international buy-in. But polls later that day and week demonstrated he did convince many Americans. I knew that was why he was chosen to make the presentation in the first place: his standing with the American people was more solid than that of any other member of the Bush administration.

    President George W. Bush would have ordered the war even without the United Nations presentation, or if Secretary Powell had failed miserably in giving it. But the secretary’s gravitas was a significant part of the two-year-long effort by the Bush administration to get Americans on the war wagon.

    That effort led to a war of choice with Iraq — one that resulted in catastrophic losses for the region and the United States-led coalition, and that destabilized the entire Middle East.

    This should not be forgotten, since the Trump administration is using much the same playbook to create a false impression that war is the only way to address the threats posed by Iran.

    #mensonges_criminels #etats-unis


  • My Life as a New York Times Reporter in the Shadow of the War on Terror
    https://theintercept.com/2018/01/03/my-life-as-a-new-york-times-reporter-in-the-shadow-of-the-war-on-terro

    Très long article de #James_Risen, #journaliste d’investigation du #New_york_Times

    My experience with [some] stor[ies] [...] made me much less willing to go along with later government requests to hold or kill stories. And that ultimately set me on a collision course with the editors at the New York Times, who were still quite willing to cooperate with the government.

    [...]

    By 2002, I was also starting to clash with the editors over our coverage of the Bush administration’s claims about pre-war intelligence on Iraq. My stories raising questions about the intelligence, particularly the administration’s claims of a link between Iraq and Al Qaeda, were being cut, buried, or held out of the paper altogether.

    [...]

    Meanwhile, #Judy_Miller, an intense reporter who was based in New York but had sources at the highest levels of the Bush administration, was writing story after story that seemed to document the existence of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction. Her stories were helping to set the political agenda in Washington.

    [...]

    After weeks of reporting in late 2002 and early 2003, I was able to get enough material to start writing stories that revealed that intelligence analysts were skeptical of the Bush administration’s evidence for going to war, particularly the administration’s assertions that there were links between Saddam’s regime and Al Qaeda.

    But after I filed the first story, it sat in the Times computer system for days, then weeks, untouched by editors. I asked several editors about the story’s status, but no one knew.

    Finally, the story ran, but it was badly cut and buried deep inside the paper. I wrote another one, and the same thing happened. I tried to write more, but I started to get the message. It seemed to me that the Times didn’t want these stories.

    What angered me most was that while they were burying my skeptical stories, the editors were not only giving banner headlines to stories asserting that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, they were also demanding that I help match stories from other publications about Iraq’s purported WMD programs. I grew so sick of this that when the Washington Post reported that Iraq had turned over nerve gas to terrorists, I refused to try to match the story. One mid-level editor in the Washington bureau yelled at me for my refusal. He came to my desk carrying a golf club while berating me after I told him that the story was bullshit and I wasn’t going to make any calls on it.

    As a small protest, I put a sign on my desk that said, “You furnish the pictures, I’ll furnish the war.” It was New York Journal publisher William Randolph Hearst’s supposed line to artist Frederic Remington, whom he had sent to Cuba to illustrate the “crisis” there before the Spanish-American War. I don’t think my editors even noticed the sign.

    #manipulation #mensonges #désinformation #MSM


  • Cherry Picking Intelligence For War in the Middle East? Here We Go Again - Defense One
    http://www.defenseone.com/ideas/2017/06/cherry-picking-intelligence-war-middle-east-here-we-go-again/139030

    Will Trump follow the Bush playbook and start a war with #Iran?

    The ingredients are in place for the United States to repeat a scenario that has cost us dearly in the past: the misuse of intelligence to muster public support for an unwise war. Fifteen years ago, Bush administration officials led the nation to invade Iraq based on their own political agenda more than facts. This time the adversary would be Iran,  the target of unrelenting hostility from the Trump administration.

    #Etats-Unis #guerre #mensonges


  • N.S.A. Halts Collection of Americans’ Emails About Foreign Targets
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/28/us/politics/nsa-surveillance-terrorism-privacy.html

    The National Security Agency said Friday that it had halted one of the most disputed practices of its warrantless surveillance program, ending a once-secret form of wiretapping that dates to the Bush administration’s post-Sept. 11 expansion of national security powers. The agency is no longer collecting Americans’ emails and texts exchanged with people overseas that simply mention identifying terms — like email addresses — for foreigners whom the agency is spying on, but are neither to nor (...)

    #NSA #écoutes #web #surveillance #FISA #PRISM


  • Election 2016
    A United States of Hate Has Exploded Under Trump
    The Trump administration has ripped the lid off a Pandora’s Box of racial, right-wing hate as the Southern Poverty Law Center reveals
    By Steven Rosenfeld / AlterNet
    February 15, 2017
    http://www.alternet.org/election-2016/united-states-hate-has-exploded-under-trump

    Donald Trump’s campaign and presidential election has brought racism in America out of the shadows in a manner not seen in decades, with Muslims becoming the top target of attacks and violence, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s annual survey of domestic hate groups and extremists.

    The trends were tied together by a common thread, he said, the modeling and license given by Donald Trump’s campaign and his administration’s early actions against immigrants and Muslims. Potok said America has become a nation where bastions of angry, aggrieved, economically struggling men—usually white—feel freer than they have in decades to lash out at anyone unlike them.

    “I think what has happened is that the Trump campaign, in many ways, has kind of ripped the lid off Pandora’s Box, and all of these different kinds of hatreds have escaped, and it’s pretty damn near impossible to get them back into the box,” he said. “One of the things that was most remarkable about the hate crime, the bias incidents we saw immediately after the election, was they targeted virtually every minority out there—Jewish people, immigrants, Muslims, LGBT people, Latinos, and also a non-minority, women. That was quite specific to Trump and his attitudes towards women and the kinds of ideas that he promoted.”

    Within 24 hours of Trump’s victory, there was an burst of “celebratory” incidents in which his supporters exulted in preying on others.

    “We actually counted 1,094 different hate crimes and lesser bias incidents in just the first 34 days after the election,” Potok said.

    “The alternative right is simply a Machiavellian rebranding of what is really white supremacy or white nationalism for the purposes of public relations,” he said. “These are people who generally favor suits and ties over Klan robes and swastika armbands, and there are some kind of unique traits of the alternative right in that it is a very youth-oriented edge of the white supremacist world. It is very much aimed at young people and colleges, and is very internet savvy by its use of that means. But at the end of the day, the alternative right is fundamentally about the idea that civilization and cultures that are healthy are simply expressions of race—that everything healthy is based on race. In other words, that America, that most of the European countries, are countries that were created by and for white people, and that is the way it ought to stay or the state to which we ought to return.”

    “We are talking about false equivalencies,” Potok continued. “I don’t claim that the country never had a radical left that engaged in real violence. Obviously, we did. That was certainly true in the ‘60s and the early ‘70s. But the idea that there is a substantial radical left in this country, committing or intending to commit major crimes and major terrorism, is frankly utter hogwash. It’s baloney. It’s simply false. And unfortunately, we have seen on any occasions, under the prior [George W.] Bush administration, top officials of the FBI testifying to Congress that so-called eco-terrorists, groups like the Animal Liberation Front and the Earth Liberation Front, are the most serious domestic terror threat that we face in the United States. Nothing could be further from the truth. I don’t know how they can justify making a claim like that. It’s ridiculous. To back up what I’m saying, these groups, the ALF and the ELF and like-minded groups, have never killed a single person.”

    In contrast, Trump and his base are promoting white supremacy and using the means at their disposal—including presidential decrees—to achieve that end.

    #alt-right #Trump #racisme #USA


  • Un deuxième jour avec Trump

    Trump applauds torture in CIA interrogations - World Socialist Web Site

    http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2017/01/26/tort-j26.html

    Trump applauds torture in CIA interrogations
    By Patrick Martin
    26 January 2017

    In an interview with ABC News broadcast Wednesday night, President Donald Trump enthusiastically endorsed waterboarding in interrogating prisoners, and said he would consider seeking to repeal the current legal ban on torture if his top national security officials recommended it.

    The interview was conducted the same day that the Washington Post made public a draft memorandum discussing possible reopening of CIA secret prisons overseas, where individuals seized by the US military-intelligence apparatus were taken to be tortured. The prisons were opened by the CIA after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, and closed by the Bush administration after the horrific methods being used were made public in leaks to the media.

    –— ---

    Wall Street’s Trump euphoria propels Dow above 20,000 - World Socialist Web Site
    http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2017/01/26/stoc-j26.html

    Wall Street’s Trump euphoria propels Dow above 20,000
    By Barry Grey
    26 January 2017

    On Wednesday, Wall Street celebrated the installation of an administration staffed by CEOs and pledged to remove all obstacles to corporate profit-making by pushing the Dow Jones Industrial Average above the 20,000 level for the first time in history. US stock indexes have been soaring since the November 8 election of Donald Trump, with the Dow rising 9 percent in just 11 weeks.

    The blue chip index gained 155 points to close at 20,068 on Wednesday. The Standard & Poor’s 500 and Nasdaq indexes also recorded strong gains and ended the day in record territory.

    –— ---

    Trump launches war against immigrant workers - World Socialist Web Site

    http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2017/01/26/pers-j26.html

    Trump launches war against immigrant workers
    26 January 2017

    The two executive orders signed by President Donald Trump on Wednesday at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) constitute an assault not only against immigrants, but against the working class as a whole.

    The main order called for beginning construction of “the wall” on the Mexican border that was endlessly promoted by Trump in the course of his presidential campaign, and for an escalation of the criminalization of undocumented immigrants.

    #trump #régression


  • Trump Poised to Lift Ban on C.I.A. ‘Black Site’ Prisons - The New York Times
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/25/us/politics/cia-detainee-prisons.html

    The Trump administration is preparing a sweeping executive order that would clear the way for the C.I.A. to reopen overseas “#black_site” prisons, like those where it detained and tortured terrorism suspects before former President Barack Obama shut them down.

    President Trump’s three-page draft order, titled “Detention and Interrogation of #Enemy_Combatants ” and obtained by The New York Times, would also undo many of the other restrictions on handling detainees that Mr. Obama put in place in response to policies of the Bush administration.

    If Mr. Trump signs the draft order, he would also revoke Mr. Obama’s directive to give the International Committee of the Red Cross access to all detainees in American custody. That would be another step toward reopening secret prisons outside of the normal wartime rules established by the Geneva Conventions, although statutory obstacles would remain.

    #torture ?


  • The ’War on Terrorism’ Just Keeps Making It Worse
    http://www.unz.com/pcockburn/politicians-are-to-blame-for-terrorist-attacks-by-not-eliminating-isis

    At such times, the media is at its self-righteous worst, whipping up hysteria and portraying horrifying but small-scale incidents as if they were existential threats. This has always been true, but 24/7 news coverage makes it worse as reporters run out of things to say and lose all sense of proportion. As the old American newspaper nostrum has it: “if it bleeds, it leads.”

    But in over-reacting, governments and media play into the hands of the terrorists who want to create fear and demonstrate their strength, but whose greatest gains come when they provoke an exaggerated self-destructive response. 9/11 was the most successful terrorist attack in history, not just because it destroyed the Twin Towers but because it lured the Bush administration into invading Afghanistan and Iraq. Subsequently, Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib, rendition, torture and “targeted killings” (otherwise known as assassination campaigns), all justified by 9/11, have acted as recruiting sergeants for al-Qaeda type organisations.

    The war on terror has failed more demonstrably than most wars: al-Qaeda numbered in the hundreds in 2001, but today – along with Isis – it has tens of thousands of fighters and supporters spread across dozens of countries.

    #terrorisme


  • Plongée dans mes archives de novembre 2004 (eh oui, je garde tout!).

    George W. Bush est réélu le 2 novembre contre John Kerry (et Ralph Nader dans le rôle de Jill Stein) alors que son bilan est terrible et que “tout le monde” pense la victoire de Kerry nécessaire et évidente...

    Les articles du New-York Times pourraient être publiés ces jours ci en changeant juste quelques noms propres, si ça vous amuse de les relire...

    Si l’analyse est bonne (mais ça se discute toujours: est-ce la “faute” des pauvres, incultes, sexistes et racistes, qui votent mal ou de l’establishment démocrate dans sa tour d’ivoire qui a perdu le contact avec la réalité?), les leçons, douze ans après, ne semblent pas avoir été tirées.

    D’autre part, l’un des articles (et un autre de Michael Moore que je n’inclue pas ici) insiste sur le fait que les jeunes, eux, ont “bien” voté, sous entendant que le vote républicain est un vote du passé et que l’avenir appartient aux démocrates. Douze ans plus tard, les jeunes sont devenus vieux et la promesse n’a pas été tenue...

    Op-Ed Columnist: Living Poor, Voting Rich
    NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF, The New York Times Company, November 3, 2004
    http://www.nytimes.com/2004/11/03/opinion/living-poor-voting-rich.html
    =================================================
    OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR: The Day the Enlightenment Went Out
    GARRY WILLS, The New-York Times, November 4, 2004
    http://www.nytimes.com/2004/11/04/opinion/the-day-the-enlightenment-went-out.html?_r=0
    ===============================================
    The Red Zone
    MAUREEN DOWD, The New-York Times, 4 November 2004
    http://www.nytimes.com/2004/11/04/opinion/the-red-zone.html
    ============================================
    A Blue City (Disconsolate, Even) Bewildered by a Red America
    JOSEPH BERGER, The New-York Times, November 4, 2004
    http://www.nytimes.com/2004/11/04/nyregion/a-blue-city-disconsolate-even-bewildered-by-a-red-america.html
    ==============================================
    Scrooge’s nightmare
    Leonard Steinhorn, Salon, November 25, 2004
    http://www.salon.com/2004/11/25/new_silent_majority
    =================================================
    On recevait aussi à l’époque des messages plus ou moins humoristiques sur la situation. Aujourd’hui ce serait plutôt sur Facebook, mais ce sont à peu près les mêmes:

    Blue America Charter
    Barbara Moran and Brian Collins, November 3, 2004

    Fellow citizens!

    It gives me great happiness to unveil our plans for the liberation of Blue America. For the past three years, we have, in conjunction with a handful of MIT engineers, been constructing a giant, cordless circular saw, which is now complete. With this saw, we plan to carve our thriving, prosperous eastern Blue nation away from the spreading infection of red america. We will then set a mighty sail, which will carry us around the tip of South America and allow us to join our Blue compadres on the West Coast. We will use our giant saw to free our friends, then join our two lands together and sail to a designated point in the Pacific Ocean. There, we will establish our new country: Blue America.

    Basic Tenets
    -----------------
    Blue America will be founded on the same ideals as the former United States of America. These ideals, sadly, have been decimated by the same red plague that scrambled the brains of so many of our unfortunate former fellow-citizens. These ideals include:
    - The Separation of Church and State
    - Freedom of Speech
    - Freedom of Assembly and Protest
    - Equal rights for all and due process under the Constitution

    Blue America will have many additional aspirations not shared by red america, including:
    - The goal of giving every citizen high quality education and health care (even prescription drugs!), regardless of their race, ethnic background or income
    - The right to a satisfying career with fair pay, job security and an eight-hour workday
    - Respect for other cultures and honesty in our dealings with other countries
    - The right to worship the deity of your choice (or not)
    - Family values, meaning the right of anyone to form a family if they wish
    - Compassion for the poor and sick
    - Belief in the value of: fresh food, recycling, renewable energy, independent bookstores and movie theatres, literacy, the free exchange of ideas, clean air, clean water, sushi, Julia Child cookbooks, Scrabble, humor, honesty, exercise, art, poetry, community gardens, mass transit, local cheese, the scientific process, the theory of Evolution, national parks, bicycles, music, sidewalks, trees, books, family farms, locally-owned diners with revolving pie cabinets, and decent coffee.

    Membership
    -----------------
    Membership in Blue America will be limited to residents of states that voted “blue” in the 2004 election, with the following exceptions:

    1. Red “carriers” (or “vectors”) who are currently living in Blue America are kindly asked to leave before the liberation.
    2. Members of certain Blue outposts in red america (like Austin, Texas) will be allowed to apply for Blue America citizenship.
    3. Members of Blue outposts in Ohio (Oberlin) will also be allowed to apply for citizenship. However, if accepted they must accept a one-year probationary period. Similarly, members of Blue outposts in Florida (South Beach) will also be allowed to apply, but must accept a two-year probationary period.
    4. Members of the Bush family are excluded for life, as are members of the Bush cabinet and all Fox News anchors, and Kid Rock. (Sorry, Colin Powell, but you had your chance.)

    Sports
    ---------
    The first official sports team of Blue America will be the Boston Red Sox (hereby re-named the Boston Blue Sox). However, red propagandist Curt Schilling will be cut from the Sox and banished to the worst team in baseball. Also, we’ll take Derek Jeter, if he’s interested.

    Timetable
    --------------
    Engineers have already begun separating northern Maine from the continent. We plan to be fully liberated and set sail on Blue Inauguration day, January 21, 2005. Pack your guitars, books and Hawaiian shirts, and let’s hear it for the blue, white and blue!

    Bring on the saw!
    Barb and Brian
    ===============================================
    Disaffected Americans look north to ’better government’
    MARINA JIMÉNEZ, 4 November 2004

    Some Americans are willing to do anything to avoid another four years of George W. Bush — even move to Canada.

    Joe Auerbach is so disappointed with Mr. Bush’s election victory that he is planning to give up a job as a systems analyst and leave his comfortable life in Columbus, Ohio, to move to a country with “a better government and more reasonable people.”

    “Today, once the Bush victory was clear, my e-mail was burning up with people vowing to leave the U.S. for Canada,” said Mr. Auerbach, 27.

    “I don’t want to be living in the U.S. when China decides we are a threat and when George Bush starts drafting computer engineers into the army. I’m morally opposed to the Bush administration.”

    He and several other disenchanted Americans are contacting immigration lawyers north of the border to see whether they qualify to immigrate to Canada. It is too soon to say whether this is political hot air or the start of a new trend in immigration.

    But among some middle-class, liberal Americans, there is a growing sense of political disengagement as they realize the majority of their fellow citizens support the conservative agenda of Mr. Bush, who received 51 per cent of the popular vote, winning more votes than any other president in U.S. history.

    “Mr. Auerbach is one of many middle-class Americans who have a philosophical difference with the direction the U.S. is taking,” said Sergio Karas, a Toronto immigration lawyer. “I have received several inquiries from people like him who want to move here.”

    Jacqueline Bart, a Toronto immigration lawyer, said she recently attended a conference in New York and more than a dozen U.S. lawyers asked her about sending their children to study in Canada. “There is a sense of hesitation about the direction Bush is taking the country in,” she said.

    Clyde Williamson, a libertarian from Ohio, feels the Bush administration is too conservative on social-justice issues such as gay rights, abortion and the medicinal use of marijuana. He is also opposed to the U.S.-led war in Iraq.

    “I don’t think the U.S. is going to turn into Nazi Germany or anything. But it is going to become a much more conservative country,” said the 29-year-old computer-security engineer.

    Others feel Mr. Bush’s unilateralist foreign policy is more troubling even than his social conservatism. A former U.S. diplomat who has already applied for permanent-resident status said yesterday that Mr. Bush’s election victory has accelerated his determination to relocate permanently to Vancouver.

    “I’m watching this administration preside over the virtual destruction of relations with the Muslim world — and, I fear, end up strengthening the forces of terrorism as a result,” he said.

    “The values of Canada are what I thought the values of the U.S. used to be: personal freedoms, a sense of need for a global community and consensus. The U.S. is losing its way.”

    A Toronto lawyer representing three U.S. soldiers who have fled to Canada to avoid fighting in Iraq said Mr. Bush’s re-election means more U.S. deserters are likely to seek refugee status north of the border.

    Jeffry House, a Vietnam-era draft-dodger who is steering the refugee claims of the three young men, says he has received about 80 e-mails from other U.S. soldiers stationed around the world, inquiring about escaping to Canada to avoid serving in Iraq. At least five U.S. soldiers are believed to have fled to Canada.

    Maria Iadinardi, spokeswoman for Citizenship and Immigration Canada, said it is too soon to say whether there has been a spike in the number of Americans being granted permanent residency, noting the number has fluctuated in recent years from a low of 4,437 in 1998 to a high of 5,604 in 2001.

    So far this year, 5,353 Americans have become permanent residents.
    ==============================================
    “Ladies and gentlemen, drop your borders: Now that George W. Bush has been officially elected, single, sexy, American liberals - already a threatened species - will be desperate to escape. These lonely, afraid (did we mention really hot?) progressives will need a safe haven. You can help. Open your heart, and your home. Marry an American. Legions of Canadians have already pledged to sacrifice their singlehood to save our southern neighbours from four more years of cowboy conservatism...” To be continued on:
    http://www.marryanamerican.ca
    =====================================
    “As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”
    –- H.L. Mencken, journalist and satirist (1880-1956)
    ==============================================
    THINGS WE SHOULD DO NOW WHILE WE STILL CAN

    Get that abortion you’ve always wanted
    Drink a nice clean glass of water
    Two words - doggy style
    Cash your social security check
    See a doctor of your own choosing
    Hug your draft age child
    Visit Syria, or any foreign country for that matter
    Get that gas mask you’ve been putting off buying
    Move out of the red states
    Horde gas
    Buy all the porn you can carry
    Borrow questionable books from the library - constitutional law books, Catcher
    in the Rye, Harry Potter, Tropic of Cancer
    If you have an idea for an art piece involving a crucifix - do it now
    Two words - come out - then go back in - HURRY!
    Jam in all the Alzheimer’s stem cell research you can
    Stay out late before the curfews start
    Get within 6 feet of a stripper in a state where its still allowed
    Go see Bruce Springsteen before he has his “accident”
    Go see Mount Rushmore before the “W” addition
    Use the phrase - “you can’t do that - this is America”
    If you’re white - marry a black person, if you’re black - marry a white person.
    If you’re gay, learn to pass.
    Take a snowmobile-noise free walk in Yosemite, without being hit by a base-jumper.
    Enroll your kid in art or music class
    Start your school day “without” a prayer
    Pass on secrets of evolution to future genes
    Learn French
    Let’s go and live in France.
    Attend a commitment ceremony with your gay friends.
    Take a factory tour anywhere in the US.
    Try to take photographs of animals on the endangered species list.
    Visit Florida before the polar ice caps melt.
    Visit Nevada before it becomes radioactive.
    Visit Alaska before “The Big Spill”.
    Visit Massachusetts while it is still a State.
    =================================================
    Et deux sites web qui sont encore valables, 12 ans plus tard:

    http://www.sorryeverybody.com
    http://www.apologiesaccepted.com

    #Etats-Unis #Donald_Trump #Hillary_Clinton #George_Bush #John_Kerry #2016 #2004 #histoire #élections_présidentielles


  • FBI director received millions from Clinton Foundation, his brother’s law firm does Clinton’s taxes - RipouxBlique des CumulardsVentrusGrosQ
    http://slisel.over-blog.com/2016/11/fbi-director-received-millions-from-clinton-foundation-his-brother

    A review of FBI Director James Comey’s professional history and relationships shows that the Obama cabinet leader — now under fire for his handling of the investigation of Hillary Clinton — is deeply entrenched in the big-money cronyism culture of Washington, D.C. His personal and professional relationships — all undisclosed as he announced the Bureau would not prosecute Clinton — reinforce bipartisan concerns that he may have politicized the criminal probe.

    These concerns focus on millions of dollars that Comey accepted from a Clinton Foundation defense contractor, Comey’s former membership on a Clinton Foundation corporate partner’s board, and his surprising financial relationship with his brother Peter Comey, who works at the law firm that does the Clinton Foundation’s taxes.

    Lockheed Martin

    When President Obama nominated Comey to become FBI director in 2013, Comey promised the United States Senate that he would recuse himself on all cases involving former employers.

    But Comey earned $6 million in one year alone from Lockheed Martin. Lockheed Martin became a Clinton Foundation donor that very year.

    Comey served as deputy attorney general under John Ashcroft for two years of the Bush administration. When he left the Bush administration, he went directly to Lockheed Martin and became vice president, acting as a general counsel.

    How much money did James Comey make from Lockheed Martin in his last year with the company, which he left in 2010? More than $6 million in compensation.

    Lockheed Martin is a Clinton Foundation donor. The company admitted to becoming a Clinton Global Initiative member in 2010.

    According to records, Lockheed Martin is also a member of the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, which paid Bill Clinton $250,000 to deliver a speech in 2010.

    In 2010, Lockheed Martin won 17 approvals for private contracts from the Hillary Clinton State Department.

    HSBC Holdings

    In 2013, Comey became a board member, a director, and a Financial System Vulnerabilities Committee member of the London bank HSBC Holdings.

    “Mr. Comey’s appointment will be for an initial three-year term which, subject to re-election by shareholders, will expire at the conclusion of the 2016 Annual General Meeting,” according to HSBC company records.

    HSBC Holdings and its various philanthropic branches routinely partner with the Clinton Foundation. For instance, HSBC Holdings has partnered with Deutsche Bank through the Clinton Foundation to “retrofit 1,500 to 2,500 housing units, primarily in the low- to moderate-income sector” in “New York City.”

    “Retrofitting” refers to a Green initiative to conserve energy in commercial housing units. Clinton Foundation records show that the Foundation projected “$1 billion in financing” for this Green initiative to conserve people’s energy in low-income housing units.

    Who Is Peter Comey?

    When our source called the Chinatown offices of D.C. law firm DLA Piper and asked for “Peter Comey,” a receptionist immediately put him through to Comey’s direct line. But Peter Comey is not featured on the DLA Piper website.

    Peter Comey serves as “Senior Director of Real Estate Operations for the Americas” for DLA Piper. James Comey was not questioned about his relationship with Peter Comey in his confirmation hearing.

    DLA Piper is the firm that performed the independent audit of the Clinton Foundation in November during Clinton-World’s first big push to put the email scandal behind them. DLA Piper’s employees taken as a whole represent a major Hillary Clinton 2016 campaign donation bloc and Clinton Foundation donation base.

    DLA Piper ranks #5 on Hillary Clinton’s all-time career Top Contributors list, just ahead of Goldman Sachs.

    And here is another thing: Peter Comey has a mortgage on his house that is owned by his brother James Comey, the FBI director.

    Peter Comey’s financial records, obtained by Breitbart News, show that he bought a $950,000 house in Vienna, Virginia, in June 2008. He needed a $712,500 mortgage from First Savings Mortgage Corporation.

    But on January 31, 2011, James Comey and his wife stepped in to become Private Party lenders. They granted a mortgage on the house for $711,000. Financial records suggest that Peter Comey took out two such mortgages from his brother that day.

    This financial relationship between the Comey brothers began prior to James Comey’s nomination to become director of the FBI.

    DLA Piper did not answer any question as to whether James Comey and Peter Comey spoke at any point about this mortgage or anything else during the Clinton email investigation.

    http://endingthefed.com


    • Trump’s Border Wall Could Impact an Astonishing 10,000 Species

      The list, put together by a team led by Dr. Gerardo J. Ceballos González of National Autonomous University of Mexico, includes 42 species of amphibians, 160 reptiles, 452 bird species and 187 mammals. Well-known species in the region include the jaguar, Sonoran pronghorn, North American river otter and black bear.


      http://therevelator.org/trump-border-wall-10000-species

    • Border Security Fencing and Wildlife: The End of the Transboundary Paradigm in Eurasia?

      The ongoing refugee crisis in Europe has seen many countries rush to construct border security fencing to divert or control the flow of people. This follows a trend of border fence construction across Eurasia during the post-9/11 era. This development has gone largely unnoticed by conservation biologists during an era in which, ironically, transboundary cooperation has emerged as a conservation paradigm. These fences represent a major threat to wildlife because they can cause mortality, obstruct access to seasonally important resources, and reduce effective population size. We summarise the extent of the issue and propose concrete mitigation measures.

      http://journals.plos.org/plosbiology/article?id=10.1371/journal.pbio.1002483
      #faune #Europe #Europe_centrale #Europe_de_l'Est #cartographie #visualisation

    • Rewriting biological history: Trump border wall puts wildlife at risk

      Mexican conservationists are alarmed over Trump’s wall, with the loss of connectivity threatening already stressed bison, pronghorn, bighorn sheep, bears and other animals.
      About one-third of the border, roughly 700 miles, already has fencing; President Trump has been pushing a controversial plan to fence the remainder.
      A wall running the entire nearly 2,000-mile frontier from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, conservationists warn, would be catastrophic for borderland ecosystems and many wildlife species, undoing years of environmental cooperation between the two countries to protect animals that must move freely or die.
      The wall is currently a key bargaining chip, and a sticking point, in ongoing immigration legislation negotiations taking place this week in Congress. Also expected this week: a federal court ruling on whether the administration can legally waive environmental laws to expedite border wall construction.


      https://news.mongabay.com/2018/02/rewriting-biological-history-trump-border-wall-puts-wildlife-at-risk
      #bisons

    • A Land Divided

      The national debate about border security doesn’t often dwell on the natural environment, but hundreds of miles of public lands, including six national parks, sit along the U.S.-Mexico border. What will happen to these lands — and the wildlife and plants they protect — if a wall or additional fences and barriers are built along the frontier?


      https://www.npca.org/articles/1770-a-land-divided
      #parcs_nationaux

    • R ULES C OMMITTEE P RINT 115–66 T EXT OF THE H OUSE A MENDMENT TO THE S ENATE A MENDMENT TO H.R. 1625

      US spending bill requires “an analysis, following consultation with the Secretary of the Interior and the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, of the environmental impacts, including on wildlife, of the construction and placement of physical barriers” (p 677)

      http://docs.house.gov/billsthisweek/20180319/BILLS-115SAHR1625-RCP115-66.pdf
      Extrait partagé par Reece Jones sur twitter
      https://twitter.com/reecejhawaii/status/977304504700780544

    • Activists Vow Fight as Congress Funds Portions of Border Wall

      Last week Congress voted to appropriate some monies to build new fortifications along the United States–Mexico border, but border activists in the Rio Grande Valley say the fight against President Donald Trump’s border wall is far from over.

      The nearly $1.6 billion in border wall funding included in the omnibus spending bill that Trump signed Friday provides for the construction of some 33 miles of new walls, all in Texas’s ecologically important Rio Grande Valley. Those walls will tear through communities, farms and ranchland, historic sites, and thousands of acres of protected wildlife habitat, while creating flooding risks on both sides of the border. But far from admitting defeat, border activists have already begun mapping out next steps to pressure Congress to slow down or even halt the wall’s construction.

      https://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/activists-vow-fight-congress-funds-portions-border-wall

    • State attorney general, environmental group to appeal decision on Trump’s border wall

      A ruling by a San Diego federal judge allowing construction of President Donald Trump’s border wall to go ahead will be appealed by two entities that opposed it, including the state Attorney General.

      Both the Center for Biological Diversity and Attorney General Xavier Becerra filed formal notices of appeal on Monday seeking to reverse a decision in February from U.S District Court Judge Gonzalo Curiel. The judge ruled that the Trump administration did not abuse its discretion in waiving environmental laws in its rush to begin border wall projects along the southwest border.

      The center had said after the ruling it would appeal, and Becerra also hinted the state would seek appellate court review at the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

      The notices declare an intent to appeal. They do not outline arguments to be made on appeal or why each group believe that Curiel got it wrong.

      In a prepared statement Becerra said, “When we said that a medieval wall along the U.S.-Mexico border does not belong in the 21st century, we meant it. There are environmental and public health laws in place, and we continue to believe that the Trump Administration is violating those laws. We will not stand idly by. We are committed to protecting our people, our values and our economy from federal overreach.”

      The lawsuits challenged a law that allowed the federal government not to comply with environmental and other laws and regulations when building border security projects. They argued the law was outdated and Congress never intended for it to be an open-ended waiver for all border projects, and contended it violated constitutional provisions of separation of powers and states’ rights.

      In his decision Curiel said both that the law was constitutional and it gave the Department of Homeland Security wide latitude over border security.

      Justice Department spokesman Devin O’Malley said in response to the Curiel ruling that the administration was pleased DHS “can continue this important work vital to our nation’s interest.”

      “Border security is paramount to stemming the flow of illegal immigration that contributes to rising violent crime and to the drug crisis, and undermines national security,” O’Malley said.

      http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/public-safety/sd-me-border-appeal-20180409-story.html

    • Les murs n’arrêtent pas que les humains

      Des États-Unis à la Malaisie, en passant par Israël ou la Hongrie, les hommes construisent de multiples murs pour contraindre les déplacements de nos semblables. N’oublions pas, explique l’auteur de cette tribune, que nous ne sommes pas les seuls à habiter la Terre et donc à pâtir de ces barrières.

      La #forêt_de_Bialowieza a quelque chose de mythique et de sacré. Âgée de plus de 8.000 ans, elle est la dernière forêt primaire d’Europe. S’étalant sur 150.000 hectares entre la Pologne et la Biélorussie, inaccessible aux visiteurs sans guide assermenté, elle constitue un sanctuaire d’espèces témoignant de la richesse des mondes anciens. Le bison d’Europe y vit encore de manière naturelle, côtoyant élans, cerfs, loups, lynx, etc.

      En 1981, à l’époque du rideau de fer, l’URSS a décidé de clôturer la frontière entre la Pologne et la Biélorussie, coupant à travers cette forêt et séparant en deux la dernière population de bisons d’Europe (environ 500 individus de part et d’autre). Cette clôture est symboliquement forte, car elle témoigne de la coupure existentielle (« ontologique », diraient les philosophes) que les humains se sont imposée vis-à-vis des autres êtres vivants. Ces derniers semblent ne pas exister à nos yeux.

      Mais cette séparation est plus que symbolique, elle est concrète. Les murs dressés par l’espèce humaine représentent une menace importante et sous-estimée pour de nombreux êtres vivants non humains.
      Murs de béton, de pierre, de boue, de sable ou de brique, de barbelés, de grilles en acier ou de clôtures électrifiées

      On en trouve surtout aux frontières : entre les États-Unis et le Mexique, la Corée du Nord et du Sud, Israël et la Cisjordanie, la Malaisie et la Thaïlande, l’Inde et le Pakistan, l’Iran et l’Irak, la Chine et la Mongolie, le Botswana et le Zimbabwe, etc. Ils prennent la forme de murs de béton, de pierre, de boue, de sable ou de brique, de barbelés, de grilles en acier ou de clôtures électrifiées, et viennent accompagnés de routes, de casernes, de lumières et de bruits. Leur nombre a considérablement augmenté depuis les attentats du 11 septembre 2001. Par exemple en Eurasie (sans le Moyen-Orient), il existe aujourd’hui plus de 30.000 km de murs, grillages et barbelés aux frontières.

      Ces murs affectent évidemment les populations humaines en brisant les trajectoires personnelles de millions de personnes. Ils affectent aussi les autres espèces [1]. À Białowieża, par exemple, la séparation a empêché les flux génétiques (et a donc fragilisé) des populations de bisons, d’ours, de loups et de lynx. Pire, 25 ans après la destruction du rideau de fer entre l’Allemagne et la République tchèque, les jeunes cerfs (qui n’avaient jamais vu de clôtures) ne traversaient toujours pas la frontière [2].

      En mai 2018 paraissait dans la revue Bioscience un article cosigné par dix-huit grands noms de l’étude et de la protection de la biodiversité (dont Edward O. Wilson) et signé par 2.500 scientifiques, qui alertait sur les « conséquences inattendues mais importantes » de ces murs frontaliers sur la biodiversité [3]. Ce cri d’alarme n’est pas le premier [4], mais il résume bien l’état des lieux de la recherche, et aussi l’état de préoccupation des chercheurs.
      Lorsque les habitats se fragmentent, les territoires des populations se réduisent

      Les murs nuisent à la biodiversité de plusieurs façons. Premièrement, ils peuvent blesser ou tuer des animaux directement, quand ils s’emmêlent dans les fils barbelés, sont électrocutés ou marchent sur des mines antipersonnelles.

      Deuxièmement, ils fragmentent et dégradent les habitats. Par exemple la frontière de 3.200 km entre le Mexique et les États-Unis traverse les aires de répartition géographique de 1.506 espèces natives (parmi lesquelles 1.077 espèces animales) dont 62 sont sur la liste des espèces en danger. Le mur menace cinq régions particulièrement riches en biodiversité (on les nomme « hotspots ») qui retiennent presque tous les efforts de conservation et de « réensauvagement » (rewilding). Lorsque les habitats se fragmentent, les territoires des populations se réduisent, et le nombre d’espèces présentes sur ces petites surfaces se réduit plus que proportionnellement, rendant ainsi les populations plus vulnérables, par exemple aux variations climatiques. Les clôtures frontalières contribuent aussi à accroître la mortalité de la faune sauvage en facilitant la tâche des braconniers, en perturbant les migrations et la reproduction, et en empêchant l’accès à la nourriture et à l’eau. Par exemple, le mouton bighorn (une espèce en danger) migrait naturellement entre la Californie et le Mexique mais ne peut aujourd’hui plus accéder aux points d’eau et aux sites de naissance qu’il avait l’habitude de fréquenter.

      Troisièmement, ces murs annulent les effets bénéfiques des millions de dollars investis dans la recherche et les mesures de conservation de la biodiversité. Les scientifiques témoignent aussi du fait qu’ils sont souvent l’objet d’intimidations, de harcèlements ou de ralentissements volontaires de la part des officiers responsables de la sécurité des frontières.

      Enfin, quatrièmement, les politiques de sécurité mises en place récemment font passer les lois environnementales au deuxième plan, quand elles ne sont pas simplement bafouées ou oubliées.
      Des centaines de kilomètres de clôtures de sécurité aux frontières extérieures et intérieures de l’UE

      Le double phénomène migrations/clôtures n’est pas prêt de s’arrêter. En 2015, un afflux exceptionnel d’êtres humains fuyant leurs pays en direction de l’Europe a conduit plusieurs États membres à réintroduire ou renforcer les contrôles aux frontières, notamment par la construction rapide de centaines de kilomètres de clôtures de sécurité aux frontières extérieures et intérieures de l’UE. Le réchauffement climatique et l’épuisement des ressources seront dans les années à venir des causes majeures de guerres, d’épidémies et de famines, forçant toujours plus d’humains à migrer. Les animaux seront aussi de la partie, comme en témoigne la progression vers le nord des moustiques tigres, qui charrient avec eux des maladies qui n’existaient plus dans nos régions, ou encore l’observation du loup en Belgique en mars 2018 pour la troisième fois depuis des siècles…

      Les accords entre pays membres de l’Union européenne au sujet des migrations humaines seront-ils mis en place à temps ? Résisteront-ils aux changements et aux catastrophes à venir ? Quel poids aura la « #Convention_des_espèces_migrantes » (censée réguler le flux des animaux) face aux migrations humaines ?

      En septembre 2017, un bison d’Europe a été aperçu en Allemagne. C’était la première fois depuis 250 ans qu’un représentant sauvage de cette espèce traversait spontanément la frontière allemande. Il a été abattu par la police.

      https://reporterre.net/Les-murs-n-arretent-pas-que-les-humains
      #Bialowieza

    • Les murs de séparation nuisent aussi à la #faune et la #flore

      3419 migrants sont décédés en Méditerranée en tentant de rejoindre Malte ou l’Italie. C’est ce que révèle un rapport du Haut commissariat des Nations unies pour les réfugiés publié le 10 décembre. Il y a les barrières naturelles, et les murs artificiels. Pendant deux mois, le web-documentaire Connected Walls s’attaque aux murs de séparation entre quatre continents : le mur entre l’Amérique du Nord et l’Amérique latine incarné par les grillages entre les Etats-Unis et le Mexique, celui entre l’Europe et l’Afrique incarné par les barbelés qui séparent les enclaves espagnoles du Maroc. Tous les 10 jours, Connected Walls publie un nouveau documentaire de cinq minutes sur une thématique choisie par les internautes. Cette semaine, ils ont sélectionné la thématique « animal ».

      Cette semaine, sur Connected-Walls,Valeria Fernandez (USA) et Fidel Enriquez (Mexico) ont suivi John Ladd dont la famille possède un ranch dans l’Arizona, à la frontière mexicaine, depuis cinq générations. Depuis la construction du mur frontalier en 2007, les choses ont changé pour lui et pour les animaux.

      De leur côté, Irene Gutierrez (Espagne) et Youssef Drissi (Maroc) ont rencontré Adam Camara, un jeune de Guinée Équatoriale qui a tenté de traverser plusieurs fois le détroit entre le Maroc et l’Espagne. Lors de sa dernière tentative, il a reçu l’aide d’un mystérieux ami.
      Pour chaque thématique, un partenaire associatif a carte blanche pour rédiger une tribune. Celle-ci a été rédigée par Dan Millis, de l’organisation écologiste Sierra Club :

      « Les animaux se moquent bien des frontières politiques. Le jaguar de Sonora n’a pas de passeport, et le canard morillon cancane avec le même accent, qu’il soit à Ceuta ou dans la forêt de Jbel Moussa. Les murs et les barrières ont cependant un impact considérable sur la faune et la flore. Par exemple, les rennes de l’ancienne Tchécoslovaquie ne franchissent jamais la ligne de l’ancien Rideau de Fer, alors même que cette barrière a disparu depuis 25 ans et qu’aucun des rennes vivant aujourd’hui ne l’a jamais connue. Les quelques 1000 kilomètres de barrières et de murs séparant les États-Unis et le Mexique détruisent et fragmentent l’habitat sauvage, en bloquant les couloirs de migration essentiels à la survie de nombreuses espèces. Une étude réalisée grâce à des caméras installées au niveau des refuges et des zones de vie naturellement fréquentés par la faune en Arizona a montré que des animaux comme le puma et le coati sont bloqués par les murs des frontières, alors que les humains ne le sont pas. »


      https://www.bastamag.net/Connected-Walls-le-webdocumentaire-4545
      #wildelife

    • Border Fences and their Impacts on Large Carnivores, Large Herbivores and Biodiversity: An International Wildlife Law Perspective

      Fences, walls and other barriers are proliferating along international borders on a global scale. These border fences not only affect people, but can also have unintended but important consequences for wildlife, inter alia by curtailing migrations and other movements, by fragmenting populations and by causing direct mortality, for instance through entanglement. Large carnivores and large herbivores are especially vulnerable to these impacts. This article analyses the various impacts of border fences on wildlife around the world from a law and policy perspective, focusing on international wildlife law in particular. Relevant provisions from a range of global and regional legal instruments are identified and analysed, with special attention for the Bonn Convention on Migratory Species and the European Union Habitats Directive.

      https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/reel.12169

    • Border Security Fencing and Wildlife: The End of the Transboundary Paradigm in Eurasia?

      The ongoing refugee crisis in Europe has seen many countries rush to construct border security fencing to divert or control the flow of people. This follows a trend of border fence construction across Eurasia during the post-9/11 era. This development has gone largely unnoticed by conservation biologists during an era in which, ironically, transboundary cooperation has emerged as a conservation paradigm. These fences represent a major threat to wildlife because they can cause mortality, obstruct access to seasonally important resources, and reduce effective population size. We summarise the extent of the issue and propose concrete mitigation measures.


      https://journals.plos.org/plosbiology/article?id=10.1371/journal.pbio.1002483

    • Butterfly Preserve On The Border Threatened By Trump’s Wall

      The National Butterfly Center, a 100-acre wildlife center and botanical garden in South Texas, provides a habitat for more than 100 species of butterflies.

      It also sits directly in the path of the Trump administration’s proposed border wall.

      The federal spending bill approved in September includes $1.6 billion in 2019 for construction of the wall. In October, the Department of Homeland Security issued a waiver to 28 laws protecting public lands, wildlife and the environment to clear the way for construction to proceed.

      https://www.npr.org/2018/11/01/660671247/butterfly-preserve-on-the-border-threatened-by-trumps-wall
      #papillons

    • Wildlife advocates, local indigenous tribes protest preparations for new border wall construction

      The federal government this week began moving bulldozers and construction vehicles to the Texas border with Mexico to begin building a new six-mile section of border wall — the first new wall under President Donald Trump, administration officials confirmed Tuesday.

      The move immediately triggered angry protests by a local butterfly sanctuary — The National Butterfly Center — and local indigenous tribes who oppose the wall and say construction will damage natural habitats. U.S. Customs and Border Protection said the wall will run through land owned by federal government. The dispute came amid an administration claim that a caravan of 2,000 migrants had arrived in northern Mexico along the Texas border.

      “We’re a recognized tribe and no one’s going to tell us who we are especially some idiots in Washington,” said Juan Mancias of the indigenous peoples’ tribe Carrizo-Comecrudo, who led protests on Monday. “We’re the original people of this land. We haven’t forgot our ancestors.”

      So far, the Trump administration has upgraded only existing fencing along the border. The president has called for some $5 billion for new wall construction, and Democrats have refused, resulting in a budget dispute that shut down the government for five weeks.

      This latest Texas project relies on previously appropriated money and won’t require further congressional approval. Construction plans for the Rio Grande Valley, just south of McAllen, Texas, call for six to 14 miles of new concrete wall topped with 18-foot vertical steel bars.

      Last year, Homeland Security Secretary Kristen Nielsen waived a variety environmental restrictions, including parts of the Endangered Species and Clean Water Acts, to prepare for construction in the area. Construction on the Rio Grande Valley project is expected to start in the coming weeks.

      Marianna Wright, executive director of the National Butterfly Center, remains a staunch advocate against the border wall. She met this week with authorities who she said wants to buy the center’s land for wall construction.

      She traveled to Washington last month to explain the environmental damage that would be caused by the construction in testimony on Capitol Hill.

      “The bulldozers will roll into the lower Rio Grande Valley wildlife conservation corridor, eliminating thousands of trees during spring nesting season for hundreds of species of migratory raptors and songbirds,” Wright told the House Natural Resources Committee.

      When asked by ABC News what message she has for people who aren’t there to see the impact of the new border wall, Wright paused, searching for words to express her frustration.

      “I would drive my truck over them, over their property, through their fence,” she said.

      DHS continues to cite national security concerns as the reason for building the border wall, with Homeland Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen saying in a statement Tuesday that migrants in the new caravan that had arrived at the Texas border would try to cross over illegally.

      “Such caravans are the result of Congress’s inexcusable failure to fully fund a needed physical barrier and unwillingness to fix outdated laws that act as an enormous magnet for illegal aliens,” Nielsen said in a statement.

      The last so-called caravan that caused alarm for the administration resulted in thousands of migrants taking shelter in the Mexican city of Tijuana. Just across the border from San Diego, many waited several weeks for the chance to enter the U.S.

      https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wildlife-advocates-local-indigenous-tribes-protest-preparations-border/story?id=60859814
      #résistance #peuples_autochtones #Carrizo-Comecrudo #McAllen #Texas

    • As Work Begins on Trump’s Border Wall, a Key Wildlife Refuge Is at Risk

      Construction is underway on a stretch of President Trump’s border wall cutting through the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge in Texas. Biologists warn the steel wall will disrupt carefully preserved habitat critical for the survival of ocelot, jaguarundi, and other threatened species.

      As Tiffany Kersten descends from a levee into a verdant forest that stretches to the Rio Grande more than a mile away, she spots a bird skimming the treetops: a red-tailed hawk. Later, other birds — great blue herons, egrets — take flight from the edge of an oxbow lake. This subtropical woodland is one of the last remnants of tamaulipan brushland — a dense tangle of Texas ebony, mesquite, retama, and prickly pear whose U.S. range is now confined to scattered fragments in the Lower Rio Grande Valley in south Texas. The ecosystem harbors an astonishing array of indigenous wildlife: ocelot, jaguarundi, Texas tortoise, and bobcat, as well as tropical and subtropical birds in a rainbow of colors, the blue bunting and green jay among them.

      But the stretch of tamaulipan scrub Kersten is exploring, in the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge, won’t be around much longer. About 15 feet from the forest edge, Kersten — a board member of a local conservation group — spots red ribbons tied to tree branches on both sides of the trail. Soon, an excavator will uproot those trees to make way for a 140-foot-wide access road and an 18-foot-high wall atop the levee, all part of the Trump administration’s plan to barricade as much of the Texas/Mexico border as possible. On Valentine’s Day, two days before I visited the border, crews began clearing a path for the road, and soon the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will plant a cement foundation in the levee and top it with a steel bollard barrier.

      This construction is the first project under a plan to build 33 miles of new wall along the levee in South Texas, with $641 million in funding that Trump requested and Congress authorized last year. That 33-mile stretch, cutting through some of the most unique and endangered habitat in the United States, will be joined by an additional 55 miles of wall under a funding bill Trump signed February 15 that allocates another $1.375 billion for wall construction. The same day, Trump also issued a national emergency declaration authorizing another $6 billion for border walls. That declaration could give the administration the power to override a no-wall zone Congress created in three protected areas around the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge.

      Since the mid-20th century, ranches, oil fields, and housing tracts have consumed 97 percent of the tamaulipan brushland.

      Since the mid-20th century, ranches, farms, oil fields, subdivisions, and shopping centers have consumed 97 percent of the tamaulipan brushland habitat at ground zero of this new spate of border wall construction. That loss led Congress to create the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge in the 1970s and spurred a 30-year-effort by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, conservation organizations, and private landowners to protect the remaining pockets of tamaulipan brushland and restore some of what has been lost. The Fish and Wildlife Service has purchased 10,000 acres of cropland and converted it back into tamaulipan woodlands; it hopes to replant another 30,000 acres. The refuge, now totaling 98,000 acres, has been likened to a string of pearls, with connected jewels of old-growth and restored habitat adorning the 300-mile lower Rio Grande Valley.

      Into this carefully rebuilt wildlife corridor now comes the disruption of a flurry of new border wall construction. Scientists and conservationists across Texas warn that it could unravel decades of work to protect the tamaulipan brushland and the wildlife it harbors. “This is the only place in the world you can find this habitat,” says Kersten, a board member of Friends of the Wildlife Corridor, a non-profit group that works closely with the Fish and Wildlife Service on the corridor program. “And only 3 percent of this habitat is remaining.”

      For all its efforts to turn cropland into federally protected habitat, the Fish and Wildlife Service finds itself with little recourse to safeguard it, precisely because it is federal property. The easiest place for the federal government to begin its new wave of border wall construction is the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge, which includes the picturesque La Parida Banco tract, where I joined Kersten. Under a 2005 law, the Department of Homeland Security can waive the environmental reviews that federal agencies such as the Fish and Wildlife Service typically conduct for projects that could alter federally protected lands.

      The tract Kersten and I visited is one of four adjacent “pearls” in the wildlife corridor — long , roughly rectangular parcels stretching from an entrance road to the river. From west to east they are the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge’s La Parida Banco tract, the Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park, the refuge’s El Morillo Banco tract, and the privately owned National Butterfly Center. A levee runs through all four properties, and the first sections of fence to be built atop it would cut off access to trails and habitat in the refuge tracts. Citizens and local and state officials have successfully fought to keep the fence from crossing the National Butterfly Center, the Bentsen-Rio Grande state park, and the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge farther downstream — at least for now. If Trump’s national emergency declaration survives court challenges, the border barriers could even be extended into these holdouts.

      When the wall and access road are completed at La Parida Banco, a crucial piece of intact native habitat will become isolated between the wall and the river. Species that either rely on the river for water or migrate across it will find pathways they’ve traversed for thousands of years blocked.

      While biologists are concerned about the impacts of the wall all along the U.S.-Mexico border, the uniqueness of South Texas’ ecosystems make it an especially troublesome place to erect an 18-foot fence, they say. The 300-mile wildlife corridor in South Texas, where the temperate and the tropical intermingle, is home to an astounding concentration of flora and fauna: 17 threatened or endangered species, including the jaguarundi and ocelot; more than 530 species of birds; 330 butterfly species, about 40 percent of all those in the U.S.; and 1,200 types of plants. It’s one of the most biodiverse places on the continent.

      `There will be no concern for plants, endangered species [and] no consultation with the Fish and Wildlife Service,’ says a biologist.

      “This is a dry land, and when you have dry land, your diversity is near the water,” says Norma Fowler, a biologist with the University of Texas at Austin who studies the tamaulipan brushland ecosystem. She co-authored an article published last year in the scientific journal Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment warning of the consequences of the new wall for the region’s singular ecosystems and wildlife. Since the wall can’t be built in the river, it’s going up a mile or more north of it in some areas, placing both the riparian habitat right along the river and the tamaulipan thornscrub on higher ground at risk.

      “Both of those habitats have been fragmented, and there’s not much left,” Fowler says. “Some of it is lovingly restored from fields to the appropriate wild vegetation. But because they’ve waived every environmental law there is, there will be no concern for plants, endangered species. There will be no consultation with the Fish and Wildlife Service.”

      When the wall rises, the barrier and the new patrol road alongside it will cut an unusually wide 140-foot swath to improve visibility through the dense brush. In her article, Fowler estimated that construction of the border wall would destroy 4.8 to 7.3 acres of habitat per mile of barrier. The fence will also cut off access to the river and habitat on the Mexican side of the border for many animals. Including bobcats, ocelot, jaguarundi, and javelina. Some slower-moving species, like the Texas tortoise, could be caught in floods that would swell against the wall.

      If new walls must be built along the Rio Grande, Fowler says, the Department of Homeland Security should construct them in a way that causes the least harm to wildlife and plants. That would include limiting the footprint of the access roads and other infrastructure, designing barriers with gaps wide enough for animals to pass through, and using electronic sensors instead of physical barriers wherever possible.

      One of the most at-risk species is the ocelot, a small jaguar-like cat that historically roamed throughout Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Arizona, but that numbers only about 80 today. The sole breeding population left in the U.S. is in South Texas, and it is wholly dependent on the dense shrubland in the Lower Rio Grande Valley that the wall will bisect. Some species could be wiped out altogether: The few sites where Physaria thamnophila, a native wildflower, still grows are directly in the path of the wall, Fowler says.

      With 1,254 miles of border — all following the languid, meandering course of the Rio Grande — Texas has far more of the United States’ 1,933-mile southern boundary than any other state, yet it has the fewest miles of existing fence. That’s because much of the Texas border is private riverfront land. The first major push to barricade the Texas border, by the George W. Bush administration, encountered opposition from landowners who balked at what they saw as lowball purchase offers and the use of eminent domain to take their property. (Years later, some of those lawsuits are still pending.) Federal land managers also put up a fight.

      Natural areas already bisected by a Bush-era fence offer a preview of the potential fate of the Rio Grande wildlife refuge.

      When Ken Merritt — who oversaw the federal South Texas Refuge Complex, which includes the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge, Santa Ana, and the Laguna Atascosa refuge near where the Rio Grande meets the Gulf of Mexico — questioned the wisdom of a barrier through Santa Ana during the Bush administration, he was forced out of his job.

      “I was getting a lot of pressure,” says Merritt, who still lives in the valley and is retired. “But it just didn’t fit. We were trying to connect lands to create a whole corridor all along the valley, and we knew walls were very much against that.”

      Natural areas already bisected by the Bush-era fence offer a preview of the potential fate of the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge. A few miles downstream from the La Parida tract, the Hidalgo Pumphouse and Birding Center, which anchors the southern end of the tiny town of Hidalgo, now looks out at a stretch of steel bollard fence atop a concrete wall embedded in the levee.

      On a recent Monday morning, a few tourists milled about the gardens behind the pumphouse, listening to the birds — curve-billed thrashers, green monk parakeets, kiskadee flycatchers — and enjoying the view from the observation deck. Curious about the wall, all of them eventually walk up to it and peek through the four-inch gaps between the steel slats. On the other side lies another pearl: a 900-acre riverside piece of the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge called the Hidalgo Bend tract. It was once a popular spot with birders drawn to its ferruginous Pygmy owls, elf owls, and other wildlife. But since the wall went up in 2009, few birders visit anymore.

      At The Nature Conservancy’s Sabal Palm Preserve, a 557-acre piece of the wildlife corridor near the Gulf of Mexico, a wall installed in 2009 cuts through one of the last stands of sabal palm forest in the Rio Grande Valley. Laura Huffman, regional director for The Nature Conservancy, worries that the more walls erected on the border, the less hope there is of completing the wildlife corridor.

      Kersten and others remain unconvinced that the danger on the border justifies a wall. She believes that sensors and more Border Patrol agents are more effective deterrents to drug smugglers and illegal immigrants. Earlier on the day we met, Kersten was part of a group of 100 or so protestors who marched from the parking lot at nearby Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park to the adjacent National Butterfly Center, holding signs that read “No Border Wall” and “Solidarity Across Borders.” One placard listed the more than two dozen environmental and cultural laws that the Trump administration waived to expedite the fence. Among them: the National Environmental Policy Act, which requires environmental analysis before federal projects can begin; the Endangered Species Act; the Clean Water Act; the Migratory Bird Treaty Act; the National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act; the National Historic Preservation Act; and the Native American Graves and Repatriation Act.

      Even as the wall goes up in the refuge, preparations for this year’s restoration projects are moving ahead. Betty Perez, whose family has lived in the Lower Rio Grande Valley for generations, is one of several landowners who grow seedlings for replanting on refuge lands each year. At her ranch, about a 45-minute drive northwest of the La Parida Banco tract, she’s beginning to collect seeds to grow this year’s native shrub crop: coyotillo, in the buckthorn family; yucca; Texas persimmon.

      Next to a shed in her backyard sit rows of seedlings-to-be in white tubes. To Perez, the delicate green shoots hold a promise: In a few years, these tiny plants will become new habitat for jaguarundi, for ocelot, for green jays, for blue herons. Despite the new walls, the wildlife corridor project will go on, she says, in the spaces in between.

      https://e360.yale.edu/features/as-work-begins-on-trumps-border-wall-a-key-wildlife-refuge-is-at-risk


  • So How Much Will Donald Trump’s Border Wall Cost?

    Donald Trump has made building a wall with Mexico the centerpiece of his campaign. Yet he doesn’t even list a price estimate for such a wall. Yet America’s attempt to build a wall under the Bush Administration has given us some idea about how much such an endeavor would cost. And it’s not just the price tag that will undercut public support for the wall. Republicans, Independents and Democrats have come to recognize that such a plan wouldn’t work.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/john-a-tures/so-how-much-will-donald-t_b_10404382.html

    #coût #barrières_frontalières #murs #business #frontières #USA #Etats-Unis
    cc @marty @albertocampiphoto @daphne

    • Progress and Challenges with the Use of Technology, Tactical Infrastructure, and Personnel to Secure the Southwest Border

      CBP spent about $2.3 billion to deploy fencing from fiscal years 2007 through 2015 and constructed 654 miles of fencing by 2015. The Border Patrol has reported that border fencing supports agents’ ability to respond to illicit cross-border activities by slowing the progress of illegal entrants. #GAO reported in February 2017 that CBP was taking a number of steps in sustaining tactical infrastructure—such as fencing, roads, and lighting—along the southwest border. However, CBP has not developed metrics that systematically use data it collects to assess the contributions of border fencing to its mission, as GAO has recommended. CBP concurred with the recommendation and plans to develop metrics by January 2019. Further, CBP established the Border Wall System Program in response to a January 2017 executive order that called for the immediate construction of a southwest border wall. This program is intended to replace and add to existing barriers along the southwest border. In April 2017, DHS leadership gave CBP approval to procure barrier prototypes, which are intended to help inform new design standards for the border wall system.


      https://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-18-397T

      Pour télécharger le #rapport:
      https://www.gao.gov/assets/700/690679.pdf


  • U.S. expands secret wars in Africa « The Chimes | Biola University
    http://chimes.biola.edu/story/2016/may/10/us-expands-secret-wars-africa

    On any day, elite U.S. forces conduct covert missions in an estimated 70 to 90 countries. According to Turse, special forces have been sent to an unprecedented 147 countries —  75 percent of the world’s nations last year alone. This is a 145 percent increase from the rate of operations conducted under the Bush administration.

    Wars conventionally fought by large infantry forces and full-scale invasions of foreign countries have made way for a new style of fighting — one that has become increasingly dependent on special forces, drones and private defense contractors. Because of the confidential nature of special ops, the Pentagon can essentially keep foreign military involvement secret from the American public. The U.S. has always had troops in Africa since the Cold War but the rate of its expansion dangerously indicates a lack of public accountability.

    The shadow wars in Africa are now fought by members of the U.S. Special Operations Command and JSOC — a clandestine organization that carries out kill/capture missions. JSOC has been called “an almost industrial-scale counterterrorism killing machine” by counterinsurgency advisor John Nagl and many have described it as the president’s “private assassination squad.” The group reports directly to the White House. It is the military’s secret military.

    #Etats-Unis #bases #Afrique


  • The How-Many-Years’ War
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/chris-weigant/the-how-many-years-war_b_10213640.html

    Being in the midst of history sometimes mean events are not seen in the “big picture” view that historians often later take, when looking back at the period. Case in point: what will America’s ongoing war eventually be known as? To date, we’ve been at war since October 2001, or a mind-boggling period of 15 years. This war was initially called “The Global War On Terror” by the Bush administration, which lumped in the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq with all the skirmishes in various other North African and Middle East countries. The Obama administration has dropped the term, but they’ve never really replaced it with anything else. But what I wonder this Memorial Day is what it will be called in the future. Right now, it’d be the “Fifteen Years’ War” — but few expect all conflicts will end by the time the next president is sworn in, so eventually that number will likely be higher.


  • Top secret « 28 pages » may hold clues about Saudi support for 9/11 hijackers
    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/top-secret-28-pages-may-hold-clues-about-saudi-support-for-911-hijackers

    Avant-première de l’émission dominicale « 60 minutes » de la CBS dont l’invité est le sénateur étasunien Bob Graham (le responsable du comité d’enquête sur les responsabilités dans les attentats du 11 septembre 2001)

    Graham and his Joint Inquiry co-chair in the House, former Representative Porter Goss (R-FL) — who went on to be director of the CIA — say the 28 pages were excised from their report by the Bush Administration in the interest of national security. Graham wouldn’t discuss the classified contents, but says the 28 pages outline a network of people he believes supported hijackers in the U.S. He tells Kroft he believes the hijackers were “substantially” supported by Saudi Arabia. Asked if the support was from government, rich people or charities, the former senator replies, “all of the above.”

    #Arabie_Saoudite #Wahhabisme #Etats-Unis #modérés



  • “They really don’t want this out”: The biggest Iraq War scandal that nobody’s talking about - Salon.com
    http://www.salon.com/2016/02/16/burn_pits

    Thousands of soldiers have suffered similar fates since serving in the vicinity of the more than 250 military burn pits that operated at bases throughout Iraq and Afghanistan. Many who haven’t succumbed to their illnesses yet have passed along the legacy of their poisoning to their children. “The rate of having a child with birth defects is three times higher for service members who served in those countries,” according to the book.

    The impact on local civilian populations is even more widespread. Although collecting data in these war-ravaged areas is extremely difficult, the studies that have been conducted reveal sharp increases in cancer and leukemia rates and skyrocketing numbers of birth defects. The toxic legacies of these burn pits will likely continue to devastate these regions for decades.

    So what are the “burn pits”? When the U.S. military set up a base in Iraq or Afghanistan, instead of building incinerators to dispose of the thousands of pounds of waste produced each day, they burned the garbage in big holes in the ground. The garbage they constantly burned included “every type of waste imaginable” including “tires, lithium batteries, asbestos insulation, pesticide containers, Styrofoam, metals, paints, plastic, medical waste and even human corpses.”

    Here’s where the story gets even more infuriating. As a result of the privatization of many aspects of military operations, the burn pits were operated by Kellogg, Brown, and Root (KBR), a former subsidiary of #Halliburton, the company where Dick #Cheney was CEO before ascending to the White House. During the Bush administration, Halliburton made nearly $40 billion from lucrative government contracts (despite many corruption scandals), Dick Cheney and his corporate allies got incredibly rich, and the soldiers whose lives have likely been destroyed by this reckless operation… are pretty much screwed.

    #fosses_de_brulage #crimes #états-unis #Irak


  • #WikiLeaks Reveals Secret Files on All Guantánamo Prisoners

    In its latest release of classified US documents, WikiLeaks is shining the light of truth on a notorious icon of the Bush administration’s “War on Terror” — the prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, which opened on January 11, 2002, and remains open under President Obama, despite his promise to close the much-criticized facility within a year of taking office.

    https://wikileaks.org/gitmo
    #Guantanamo


  • Neocons Defend Saudi Arabia
    https://lobelog.com/neocons-defend-saudi-arabia

    It’s remarkable that just 14 years ago, neocons like Richard Perle were calling for the Bush administration to include Riyadh among the capitals on Washington’s post-9/11 target list. Now the Saud family has again become their dearest friend. No less remarkable is how those fearless defenders of Western values and democratic governance are rallying in defense of an absolute monarchy and the undisputed and deep-pocketed leader of the counter-revolution against the reformist movements of the “Arab Spring.”


  • The bigger the haystack, the harder the terrorist is to find | Coleen Rowley | Comment is free | The Guardian
    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/nov/28/bigger-haystack-harder-terrorist-communication-future-attacks

    Un article de Novembre 2014 : d’un point de vue prévention contre le #terrorisme, #métadonnées, mégaerreurs

    ... as an FBI whistleblower and witness for several US official inquiries into 9/11 intelligence failures, I fear that terrorists will succeed in carrying out future attacks – not despite the massive collect-it-all, dragnet approach to intelligence implemented since 9/11, but because of it. This approach has made terrorist activity more difficult to spot and prevent.

    Almost no one now remembers the typical response of counter-terrorism agency officials when asked why, in the spring and summer of 2001 in the lead-up to 9/11, they had failed to read and share intelligence or take action when “the system was blinking red” (the actual title of chapter eight of the US’s 9/11 commission’s report) and when the US director of central intelligence and other counter-terrorism chiefs were said to have had “their hair on fire”.

    The common refrain back then was that, pre 9/11, intelligence had been flowing so fast and furiously, it was like a fire hose, “and you can’t get a sip from a fire hose”. Intelligence such as the Phoenix memo – which warned in July 2001 that terrorist suspects had been in flight schools and urgently requested further investigation – went unread.

    Although “can’t get a sip” was a somewhat honest excuse, it was undercut when the Bush administration, days after the attacks, secretly turned on their illegal “Presidential Surveillance Program” to collect more, by a factor of thousands, of the communications of innocent American citizens, as well as those of billions of people around the globe.

    So the “fire hose” turned into a tsunami of non-relevant data, flooding databases and watch lists. The CIA had only about 16 names on its terrorist watch list back in September 2001 and probably most were justified, but there’s no way the million names reportedly now on the “terrorist identities datamart environment” list can be very accurate. The decision to elevate quantity over quality did nothing to increase accuracy, unblock intelligence stovepipes or prevent terrorist attacks.

    In fact, years ago a study commissioned by Homeland Security and conducted by the National Academy of Sciences found that no existing computer program was able to distinguish the real terrorists – those who would go on to commit violent acts – from all the “false positives” .

    This was corroborated when NSA director Keith Alexander and others, under great pressure to justify their (illegal) “bulk” collection of metadata, pressed underlings to produce 54 examples to prove that “total information awareness” type collection “worked” to identify and stop real terrorism, only to have the proffered NSA examples fall apart under scrutiny, leaving only one flimsy case of a taxi driver in San Diego who had donated a few thousand dollars to al-Shabab-connected Somalians.

    Governments rely on costly “security theatre” – the practice of investing in countermeasures to provide the feeling of improved security while doing little or nothing to actually achieve it. But it seems to do more to dupe fearful taxpayers into believing that massive, unwieldy “intelligence” systems will protect them, than to intimidate would-be attackers or reduce terrorist organisation recruitment.

    After Edward Snowden described just how massive and irrelevant the US and UK monitoring had become, people started to grasp the significance of the saying: “If you’re looking for a needle in a haystack, how does it help to add hay?”

    The fearful citizen may not realise how difficult it is to search and analyse content due to sheer volume. They want to believe in the magic of data-mining to somehow predict future criminal behaviour. If only more contractors are hired and more money is spent to increase monitoring, if only laws can be passed forcing internet companies to constantly surveil every post and kitten image, coded and uncoded, in a multitude of languages, for signs of danger, the Orwellian argument goes, we will find the enemies.

    But the real purpose in the egregiously stupid push to assign Facebook the fool’s errand of monitoring everything seems to be to spread the blame. Leaving aside the privacy implications, what people need to grasp is that this is the kind of security thinking that doesn’t just fail to protect us, it makes us less safe.