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Real War * DU Clean-up * George Carlin * Weird Bush Men

21 April 2003

"Dissent is the highest form of patriotism."

-- Thomas Jefferson

1) The Real War - On American Democracy by Thom Hartmann
2) Royal Society Urges DU Clean-Up In Iraq
3) George Carlin on Bush War

- - Trapped in a poison fog by John Kaminski
- - Missing Arms Cast Doubt on War by Scott Ritter
- - Bush: It's Not Just His Doctrine That's Wrong by Howard Dean
4) The Weird Men Behind George W. Bush's War
- - Tim Robbins - 'A Chill Wind is Blowing'
- - Hollywood Revives McCarthyist Climate

Editor's Notes:

This past weekend I had the good graces to celebrate both Easter and Passover. First, on Good Friday, I was almost crucified in court due to debts attributed to my credit card investment in developing an improved Stirling engine for clean onsite electrical power generation. The good news is that the company will soon have rights to an issued patent. The not so good news is that the project has been severely underfunded, especially since September 11, 2001. But we make a bit of progress each day for this promising important sustainable technology. For more on this work see link from "STIRLING solution for Onsite Power Production." So, I am in debt.. and expected the Court to apply a Lien on my home, but the opposing attorney before we met the Judge mentioned that they were seeking my imprisonment for Contempt of Court charges. It suddenly dawned on me that I might not be going home that day; the Judge could lock me up that simply.. no trial.. no jury... obviously I did my best to explain the sincerity of my endeavors and commitment to resolve this matter, to either file for bankruptcy or succeed with the work and make payments. The opposing attorney after the case was finished was convinced that the Judge was about to have me arrested, but at the last minute, after discussing various points in the case with me, decided to give me six months for the next review. Whew.. You got to imagine my relief. The case before mine had a young adult in shackles because he ran away from the police on trivial matters, but they take this all so seriously. So when my dad came over to celebrate Passover with me on Saturday, I was mighty appreciative to celebrate the story of a people seeking their freedom. Yet, here, I again came back to the reality of my brother/friend Malik Abdullah Akili, and Leonard Peltier, and thousands of others, suffering in an unjust and twisted system. To complete the weekend on Easter Sunday I visited my favorite sustainable-oriented community "Sirius," and lucked out in gathering with an indigenous group traveling from California, headed to Canada to council for the healing of all races. They opened a stone lodge ceremony and sacred pipe, deep nurturing prayers for renewal and trust of purpose. After the sweat (and feast) we watched the Dorrel video on US foreign policy since WWII. It has been a full weekend. So it is no wonder that this issue of Flyby News is dedicated to our freedom, and reclaiming a democracy in the US.

Item 1 begins with two paragraphs excerpted by Thom Hartman on his recent commentary called "The Real War - On American Democracy." He quite clearly points out that ‘..the neoconservative agenda is nothing less than an attempt to overthrow republican democracy and replace it with a worldwide feudal state.' No wonder these are such intense times. Item 2 is a positive response from Britain's premier scientific institution, which was indignant because the Pentagon had claimed that it had the backing of the society in saying DU was not dangerous. The Royal Society, in fact, is calling for the monitoring and cleaning of exploded Depleted Uranium sites in Iraq. Item 3 is George Carlin's take on Bush's War. Of course you can't repeat Carlin's words to your family relations, but following it is an excerpt from John Kaminski's family discussions, also, very revealing. In this item, too, are links for Scott Ritter's article, "Missing Arms Cast Doubt on War" and a rebuttal by Presidential Candidate, Howard Dean. Dean was responding to a previous his article also published by Common Dreams and Flyby News in last issue. This piece is entitled: "Bush: It's Not Just His Doctrine That's Wrong." And item 4 is called "The Weird Men Behind George W. Bush's War." This is an extensive and clearly written, thought provoking analysis from the New Statesman publication of London. This item, too, contains a transcript link of the talk by Tim Robbins at the National Press Club, and an article on the McCarthyist climate in Hollywood, and creeping into many communities in these dark times. But the darkest of times may come just before the breaking of dawn.

A sunrise takes us by surprise
Yet never delay its coming,
Its turning, its yearning
To mix life with color
And turn on the crystal ball of Earth.

1) The Real War - On American Democracy by Thom Hartmann

NEO-FEUDALISM~The Neo-Cons Global Vision, here and abroad

The Real War - On American Democracy

Excerpt: The Founders of America knew that for 6000 years "civilized" humans had always been ruled by one of three groups: kings, theocrats, or feudal lords. Kings held power by threat of violence and continual warfare; theocrats and popes held power by the people's fear of a god or gods; and feudal lords held power by wealth and the power that comes from throwing average people into poverty.

The "new" idea of our Founders in 1776 was to throw off all three of these historic tyrannies and replace them with a fourth way - people being ruled by themselves. A government that derived its legitimacy and continuing existence solely from the approval of its citizens. Government of, by, and for "We, The People." They called it a republican democracy. What we are seeing now in the neoconservative agenda is nothing less than an attempt to overthrow republican democracy and replace it with a worldwide feudal state.

Thom Hartmann is an author and talk show host.
Check his website for a link to the complete article:

2) Royal Society Urges DU Clean-Up In Iraq

The Pentagon claimed the DU is harmless and that the Royal Society in Britain backed them up. Here the Brits refute that, and call for a cleanup.

Royal Society Urges DU Clean-Up In Iraq
Spells Out Dangers Of Depleted Uranium

By Paul Brown
Environment Correspondent

The Guardian - UK 4-17-03

Hundreds of tons of depleted uranium used by Britain and the United States in Iraq should be removed to protect the civilian population, the Royal Society said yesterday, contradicting Pentagon claims it was not necessary.

The society's statement fuels the controversy over the use of depleted uranium (DU), which is an effective tank destroyer and bunker buster but is believed by many scientists to cause cancers and other severe illnesses.

The society, Britain's premier scientific institution, was incensed because the Pentagon had claimed it had the backing of the society in saying DU was not dangerous.

In fact, the society said, both soldiers and civilians were in short and long term danger. Children playing at contaminated sites were particularly at risk.

DU is left over after uranium is enriched for use in nuclear reactors and is also recovered after reprocessing spent nuclear fuel. There are thousands of tons of it in stores in the US and UK.

Because it is effectively free and 20% heavier than steel, the military experimented with it and discovered it could penetrate steel and concrete much more easily than conventional weapons. It burns at 10,000 C, incinerating everything as it turns to dust.

As it proved so effective, it was adopted as a standard weapon in the first Gulf war despite its slight radioactive content and toxic effects. It was used again in the Balkans and Afghanistan by the US.

DU has been suspected by many campaigners of causing the unexplained cancers among Iraqi civilians, particularly children, since the previous Gulf war. Chemicals released in the atmosphere during bombing could equally be to blame.

Among those against the use of DU is Professor Doug Rokke, a one time US army colonel who is also a former director of the Pentagon's depleted uranium project, and a former professor of environmental science at Jacksonville University. He has said a nation's military personnel cannot willfully contaminate any other nation, cause harm to persons and the environment and then ignore the consequences of their actions. He has called on the US and UK to "recognise the immoral consequences of their actions and assume responsibility for medical care and thorough environmental remediation".

The UN Environment Programme has been tracking the use of DU in the Balkans and found it leaching into the water table. Seven years after the conflict it has recommended the decontamination of buildings where DU dust is present to protect the civilian population against cancer.

Up to 2,000 tons of DU has been used in the Gulf, a large part of it in cities like Baghdad, far more than in the Balkans. Unep has offered to go to Iraq and check on the quantities of DU still present and the danger it poses to civilians.

Professor Brian Spratt, chairman of the Royal Society working group on depleted uranium, said that a recent study by the society had found that the majority of soldiers were unlikely to be exposed to dangerous levels of depleted uranium during and after its use on the battlefield.

"However, a small number of soldiers might suffer kidney damage and an increased risk of lung cancer if substantial amounts of depleted uranium are breathed in, for instance inside an armoured vehicle hit by a depleted uranium penetrator."

He said the study also concluded that the soil around the impact sites of depleted uranium penetrators may be heavily contaminated, and could be harmful if swallowed by children for example.

"In addition, large numbers of corroding depleted uranium penetrators embedded in the ground might pose a long-term threat if the uranium leaches into water supplies.

"We recommend that fragments of depleted uranium penetrators should be removed, and areas of contamination should be identified and, where necessary, made safe."

He added: "We also recommend long-term sampling, particularly of water and milk, to detect any increase in uranium levels in areas where depleted uranium has been used. This provides a cost-effective method of monitoring sensitive components in the environment, and of providing information about uranium levels to concerned local populations."

Canadian Mind Products, Roedy Green.
See for links about the Iraq war.

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Note: Photos at above URL show graphic depictions of consequences of this War.

3) George Carlin on Bush War
- - Trapped in a poison fog by John Kaminski
- - Missing Arms Cast Doubt on War by Scott Ritter
- - Bush: It's Not Just His Doctrine That's Wrong by Howard Dean

George Carlin on Bush War:
Rockets and Penises in the Persian Gulf


Premature Extraction

Actually, when you think about it, this country has had a manhood problem for some time. You can tell the language we use; language always gives us away. What did we do wrong in Vietnam? We 'pulled out'! Not a very manly thing to do. No. When you're fucking people, you're supposed to stay with it and fuck them good; fuck them to death; hang in there and keep fucking them until they're all fucking dead.

But in Vietnam what happened was by accident we left a few women and children alive, and we haven't felt good about ourselves since.

That's why in the Persian Gulf, George Bush had to say, 'This will not be another Vietnam.' He actually said, 'this time we're going all the way.'

Imagine. An American president using the sexual slang of a thirteen-year-old to describe his foreign policy.

And, of course, when it got right down to it, he didn't 'go all the way.' Faced with going into Baghdad he punked out. No balls. Just Bush.

Instead, he applied sanctions, so he'd be sure that an extra half a million brown children would die. And so his oil buddies could continue to fill their pockets.

If you want to know what happened in the Persian Gulf, just remember the first names of the two men who ran that war: Dick Cheney and Colin Powell.

Dick and Colon.

Someone got fucked in the ass.

And those brown people better make sure they keep their pants on, because Dick and Colin have come back for an encore.

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- - Trapped in a poison fog by John Kaminski


Perhaps you can't use George Carlin's observations with your family, but you could say:

"..Did you know that 255,000 soldiers have filed for VA disability pensions as a result of being in the first Gulf War? Did you know that 10,000 of those people have already died? And they say that the potency of the ordnance they're using now is much greater, so that we can expect the incidence of illness and cancer in these troops who are serving now is going to be much greater that what happened in the first Gulf War?

"You don't want me to talk about the actual diseases these people get, not at the dinner table .."

With that he rocked forward and took a big slug of beer. I was an avuncular prizefighter looking for a gentle but irrevocable knockout.

"Do you know why we went to war in Iraq?" I asked quietly. His answer was mumbled, garbled, uncertain. "Well, yeah, that guy (Saddam) was dangerous; he was a menace."

I pushed on. "Is it OK to invade another country if the reason you're using is a lie?" I asked.

"Well, er, no."

"There were two reasons we invaded Iraq," I said. "First was we said he had weapons of mass destruction. We didn't find any. That reason was a lie. Second, we said Saddam was connected with al-Qaeda and 9/11. There IS no connection. Al-Qaeda was invented by the CIA when we recruited Muslims to fight the Russians in Afghanistan 15 years ago. The U.S. has fought side-by-side with al-Qaeda in Bosnia, Kosovo and Macedonia. The connection is not between al-Qaeda and Iraq; it's between al-Qaeda and the U.S. Both reasons we went to war in Iraq are lies, told by our country. We killed all those people for no real reasons at all, or at least, for reasons that are not the ones they're telling us.."

You could contact John Kaminski < > to request the entire article.

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- - Missing Arms Cast Doubt on War by Scott Ritter

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- - ‘Bush: It's Not Just His Doctrine That's Wrong' by Howard Dean
Published on Thursday, April 17, 2003 by

[Note: After reading a recent article that called into question my opposition to the Bush Doctrine of preemptive war, I wanted to state my position clearly to set the record straight. I appreciate that the editors of Common Dreams have given me this opportunity.]

When Congress approved the President's authorization to go to war in Iraq – no matter how well-intentioned – it was giving the green light to the President to set his Doctrine of preemptive war in motion. It now appears that Iraq was just the first step. Already, the Bush Administration is apparently eyeing Syria and Iran as the next countries on its target list. The Bush Doctrine must be stopped here.

For the complete article, see:

4) The Weird Men Behind George W. Bush's War
- - Tim Robbins - 'A Chill Wind is Blowing'
- - Hollywood Revives McCarthyist Climate

The Weird Men Behind George W. Bush's War
By Michael Lind

New Statesman - London

April 7, 2003

America's allies and enemies alike are baffled. What is going on in the United States? Who is making foreign policy? And what are they trying to achieve? Quasi-Marxist explanations involving big oil or American capitalism are mistaken. Yes, American oil companies and contractors will accept the spoils of the kill in Iraq. But the oil business, with its Arabist bias, did not push for this war any more than it supports the Bush administration's close alliance with Ariel Sharon. Further, President Bush and Vice-President Cheney are not genuine "Texas oil men" but career politicians who, in between stints in public life, would have used their connections to enrich themselves as figureheads in the wheat business, if they had been residents of Kansas, or in tech companies, had they been Californians..

..The core group now in charge consists of neoconservative defence intellectuals (they are called "neoconservatives" because many of them started off as anti-Stalinist leftists or liberals before moving to the far right). Inside the government, the chief defence intellectuals include Paul Wolfowitz, the deputy secretary of defence. He is the defence mastermind of the Bush administration; Donald Rumsfeld is an elderly figurehead who holds the position of defence secretary only because Wolfowitz himself is too controversial. Others include Douglas Feith, the number three at the Pentagon; Lewis "Scooter" Libby, a Wolfowitz protege who is Cheney's chief of staff; John R Bolton, a right-winger assigned to the State Department to keep Colin Powell in check; and Elliott Abrams, recently appointed to head Middle East policy at the National Security Council. On the outside are James Woolsey, the former CIA director, who has tried repeatedly to link both 9/11 and the anthrax letters in the US to Saddam Hussein, and Richard Perle, who has just resigned from his unpaid defence department advisory post after a lobbying scandal. Most of these "experts" never served in the military. But their headquarters is now the civilian defence secretary's office, where these Republican political appointees are despised and distrusted by the largely Republican career soldiers.

Most neoconservative defence intellectuals have their roots on the left, not the right. They are products of the largely Jewish-American Trotskyist movement of the 1930s and 1940s, which morphed into anti- communist liberalism between the 1950s and 1970s and finally into a kind of militaristic and imperial right with no precedents in American culture or political history. Their admiration for the Israeli Likud party's tactics, including preventive warfare such Israel's 1981 raid on Iraq's Osirak nuclear reactor, is mixed with odd bursts of ideological enthusiasm for "democracy". They call their revolutionary ideology "Wilsonianism" (after President Woodrow Wilson), but it is really Trotsky's theory of the permanent revolution mingled with the far-right Likud strain of Zionism. Genuine American Wilsonians believe in self-determination for people such as the Palestinians.

The neo-con defence intellectuals, as well as being in or around the actual Pentagon, are at the centre of a metaphorical "pentagon" of the Israel lobby and the religious right, plus conservative think- tanks, foundations and media empires. Think-tanks such as the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) and the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) provide homes for neo-con "in-and- outers" when they are out of government (Perle is a fellow at AEI). The money comes not so much from corporations as from decades-old conservative foundations, such as the Bradley and Olin foundations, which spend down the estates of long-dead tycoons. Neoconservative foreign policy does not reflect business interests in any direct way. The neo-cons are ideologues, not opportunists.

The major link between the conservative think-tanks and the Israel lobby is the Washington-based and Likud-supporting Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (Jinsa), which co-opts many non-Jewish defence experts by sending them on trips to Israel. It flew out the retired General Jay Garner, now slated by Bush to be proconsul of occupied Iraq. In October 2000, he co-signed a Jinsa letter that began: "We . . . believe that during the current upheavals in Israel, the Israel Defence Forces have exercised remarkable restraint in the face of lethal violence orchestrated by the leadership of [the] Palestinian Authority."

The Israel lobby itself is divided into Jewish and Christian wings. Wolfowitz and Feith have close ties to the Jewish-American Israel lobby. Wolfowitz, who has relatives in Israel, has served as the Bush administration's liaison to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. Feith was given an award by the Zionist Organisation of America, citing him as a "pro-Israel activist". While out of power in the Clinton years, Feith collaborating with Perle, co-authored for Likud a policy paper that advised the Israeli government to end the Oslo peace process, reoccupy the territories and crush Yasser Arafat's government.

Such experts are not typical of Jewish-Americans, who mostly voted for Gore in 2000. The most fervent supporters of Likud in the Republican electorate are southern Protestant fundamentalists. The religious right believes that God gave all of Palestine to the Jews, and fundamentalist congregations spend millions to subsidise Jewish settlements in the occupied territories.

The final corner of the neoconservative pentagon is occupied by several right-wing media empires, with roots - odd as it seems - in the Commonwealth and South Korea. Rupert Murdoch disseminates propaganda through his Fox Television network. His magazine the Weekly Standard, edited by William Kristol, the former chief of staff of Dan Quayle (vice-president, 1989-93), acts as a mouthpiece for defence intellectuals such as Perle, Wolfowitz, Feith and Woolsey as well as for Sharon's government. The National Interest (of which I was executive editor, 1991-94) is now funded by Conrad Black, who owns the Jerusalem Post and the Hollinger empire in Britain and Canada.

Strangest of all is the media network centred on the Washington Times - owned by the South Korean messiah (and ex-convict) the Reverend Sun Myung Moon - which owns the newswire UPI. UPI is now run by John O'Sullivan, the ghost-writer for Margaret Thatcher who once worked as an editor for Conrad Black in Canada. Through such channels, the "Gotcha!" style of right-wing British journalism, as well as its Europhobic substance, have contaminated the US conservative movement.

The corners of the neoconservative pentagon were linked together in the 1990s by the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), run by Kristol out of the Weekly Standard offices. Using a PR technique pioneered by their Trotskyist predecessors, the neo-cons published a series of public letters, whose signatories often included Wolfowitz and other future members of the Bush foreign policy team. They called for the US to invade and occupy Iraq and to support Israel's campaigns against the Palestinians (dire warnings about China were another favourite). During Clinton's two terms, these fulminations were ignored by the foreign policy establishment and the mainstream media. Now they are frantically being studied.

How did the neo-con defence intellectuals - a small group at odds with most of the US foreign policy elite, Republican as well as Democratic - manage to capture the Bush administration? Few supported Bush during the presidential primaries. They feared that the second Bush would be like the first - a wimp who had failed to occupy Baghdad in the first Gulf war and who had pressured Israel into the Oslo peace process - and that his administration, again like his father's, would be dominated by moderate Republican realists such as Powell, James Baker and Brent Scowcroft. They supported the maverick senator John McCain until it became clear that Bush would get the nomination.

Then they had a stroke of luck - Cheney was put in charge of the presidential transition (the period between the election in November and the accession to office in January). Cheney used this opportunity to stack the administration with his hardline allies. Instead of becoming the de facto president in foreign policy, as many had expected, Secretary of State Powell found himself boxed in by Cheney's right-wing network, including Wolfowitz, Perle, Feith, Bolton and Libby..

For the complete article, see:

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- - Tim Robbins - 'A Chill Wind is Blowing'

'A Chill Wind is Blowing in This Nation...'

Transcript of the speech given by actor Tim Robbins to the National Press Club
Washington, D.C. April 15, 2003.

TIM ROBBINS: Thank you. And thanks for the invitation. I had originally been asked here to talk about the war and our current political situation, but I have instead chosen to hijack this opportunity and talk about baseball and show business. (Laughter.) Just kidding. Sort of.

I can't tell you how moved I have been at the overwhelming support I have received from newspapers. . . I am extremely grateful that there are those of you out there still with a fierce belief in constitutionally guaranteed rights. We need you, the press, now more than ever. This is a crucial moment for all of us..

..A chill wind is blowing in this nation. A message is being sent through the White House and its allies in talk radio and Clear Channel and Cooperstown. If you oppose this administration, there can and will be ramifications.

Every day, the air waves are filled with warnings, veiled and unveiled threats, spewed invective and hatred directed at any voice of dissent. And the public, like so many relatives and friends that I saw this weekend, sit in mute opposition and fear.

I am sick of hearing about Hollywood being against this war. Hollywood's heavy hitters, the real power brokers and cover-of-the- magazine stars, have been largely silent on this issue. But Hollywood, the concept, has always been a popular target..

..The journalists in this country can battle back at those who would rewrite our Constitution in Patriot Act II, or "Patriot, The Sequel," as we would call it in Hollywood.. We are counting on you to star in that movie.

Journalists can insist that they not be used as publicists by this administration.

..Our ability to disagree, and our inherent right to question our leaders and criticize their actions define who we are. To allow those rights to be taken away out of fear, to punish people for their beliefs, to limit access in the news media to differing opinions is to acknowledge our democracy's defeat.

These are challenging times. There is a wave of hate that seeks to divide us -- right and left, pro-war and anti-war. In the name of my 11-year-old nephew, and all the other unreported victims of this hostile and unproductive environment of fear, let us try to find our common ground as a nation. Let us celebrate this grand and glorious experiment that has survived for 227 years. To do so we must honor and fight vigilantly for the things that unite us -- like freedom, the First Amendment and, yes, baseball. (Applause.)

The above was excerpted; for the complete transcript, see:

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- - Hollywood Revives McCarthyist Climate

Published on Monday, April 21, 2003 by the lndependent/UK

Hollywood Revives McCarthyist Climate by Silencing and Sacking War Critics
by Andrew Gumbel in Los Angeles

Hollywood is often depicted in the US media as a hotbed of anti-government dissent and left-wing politics but that is not how it feels to Ed Gernon.

Mr Gernon was, until recently, a television producer at CBS responsible for a four-part miniseries on Hitler's rise to power, which will be shown next month. He thought the timing was apt, and said so in an interview with TV Guide magazine. "It basically boils down to an entire nation gripped by fear, who ultimately chose to give up their civil rights and plunged the whole nation into war," he said. "I can't think of a better time to examine this history than now."

That was far too strong for Leslie Moonves, CBS's chief executive, who promptly fired him. No reasons were given, although politics and a strong desire not to fall foul of the Bush administration apparently had plenty to do with it.

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