Israeli human rights organization B'Tselem is questioning Israel's widely-distributed video of "Hamas fighters loading rockets on a truck," which Israel subsequently bombed on Monday. B'Tselem claims it tracked down the truck, and the surviving men... and says they were loading welding equipment, and the "rockets" were actually gas canisters.

Al-Jazeera has aired a report:

I don't actually know who is telling the truth... but right now, I'm not very inclined to believe Israel's account of what happened.
Was Québec responsible for Canada's decision
not to participate in the 2003 war in Iraq?


Kevyn Jacobs
PLSC 445B
Québec Politics and
Québec-U.S. Relations
Western Washington University
2008.06.18
=============================================
Click to read my final paper )
If the mess the United States created in Iraq isn't bad enough, today we have this news:
Turkey Launches Ground Incursion Into Iraq; U.S. Objects.

The Kurds in northern Iraq ("Kurdistan") and the Turks have been sniping back and forth over the border for some time now. Turkey is terrified of Iraq breaking up into three countries, because the Kurds could end up with a country of their own -- which is the last thing Turkey wants.

The Kurdish people -- who have no country of their own -- are found spread across the territory that marks the border between Iraq and Turkey. (Their territory also extends into Iran, Syria and Armenia.) The Kurds in Turkey, who have battled the Turks for independence for years, are able to operate with support from the Kurds in Northern Iraq.

Now Turkey is fighting back, sending tanks and troops into Northern Iraq, in order to stop the Kurdish rebels.

I've been afraid of this.

Without Saddam Hussein in power, holding the artificial country of Iraq together (Iraq was artificially created by the British), and holding back the northern Kurds, this was bound to happen.

That's not to say I want Saddam back. I don't. But I've been afraid that this would happen sooner or later, and anyone who knew a lick about the ethnic tensions in the region could have foreseen this one coming.

So. The Turks are invading. Expect massive bloodshed.

I just hope were not looking at the beginnings of a World War here.

*sigh*

Sometimes I wish I was just an ignorant American, unaware of what's going on in other parts of the world.
I'm really starting to get nervous about this drumbeat for war with Iran. The Iraq debacle has shown that Americans are easily manipulated by propaganda and lies into going to war, much to the delight of the Military-Industrial-Congressional complex and the Bush-Cheney war profit machine.

Now there's evidence that the biggest reason given that Iran should not be allowed to have nuclear weapons, Iranian President Ahmadinejad's much-repeated quote that he wished to see Israel "wiped off the map" may actually be a mistranslation. According to UK Guardian Columnist Jonathan Steele, the phrase may actually be closer to "the regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time."

Kind of puts a different spin on the quote, doesn't it? While the first translation is abhorrent to me, I kind of agree with that second translation.

Now, I don't pretend to speak Farsi. I don't pretend to know if Jonathan Steele or his sources are reliable. But what I do know is that the Bush Administration cannot be trusted, and that the mainstream U.S. media, which is clearly in the pocket of the Israeli lobby, definitely cannot be trusted to tell a balanced truth about Middle Eastern affairs.

I don't know what the right answer is. But I do know that going to war with Iran over its nuclear programme may very possibly trigger World War III, with the U.S. and Israel on one side, and the Islamic world, Russia, and possibly China on the other side. Because of this danger, we must proceed very, very carefully.

Is it worth going to war over a mistranslation? With the stakes so high, isn't it worth stepping back from the rhetoric and propaganda, taking a deep breath, and studying the issue logically and dispassionately?

Let's not get goaded into an unjust war again. Given our history as a country, we need to let cooler, reasoned heads prevail. Please, please, please, I beg you, question EVERYTHING that the mainstream media and the Bush administration is telling you.

Our lives depend on it.
For quite some time now, I've been saying that one of the REAL reasons we are in Iraq is not about 9-11, or WMDs, or "bringing Democracy," or even the old left-wing standby, a war for oil.

I believe we are in Iraq because WAR IS GOOD FOR BUSINESS.

Just follow the money... ask the question: "Who is making money off this war?"

It's the defense contractors.

This war is being fought for the benefit of Halliburton (Vice President Dick Cheney's company), and Kellogg Brown & Root, Bechtel, The Carlyle Group... the list goes of war profiteers goes on and on.

Eisenhower warned us this would happen in his farewell speech. (Video here 2:26 mins, a clip from the EXCELLENT documentary, "Why We Fight" -- if you haven't seen it, you really should.)

In that speech, my fellow Kansan warned the American people about the rise of the "Military-Industrial Complex" (In his original speech, edited before he gave it, he called it the "Military-Industrial-Congressional Complex"), and how these people who make money off of war were a danger to America.

Ike's warning rings so true, now. So please, America, ask the questions:

What if our soldiers are actually just fighting to make some business executives rich?

What if the people of Iraq are dying to pad the pockets of Dick Cheney & friends?

What if all this is REALLY about is money?

I say I and say it and say it, but I feel like nobody seems to "get it." Certainly nobody in the mainstream media is talking about this, and neither is the public. The DemoPublicans and RepubliCrats certainly aren't talking about it -- they are bought and paid for. You average taxpayer has no clues as to what is really going on, or where their money is going.

Anyway, I just heard another voice echoing mine, when columnist Robert Scheer published a piece yesterday entitled, "Ike Was Right."

Reading it was like a cold drink in a hot, dry summer. Finally -- FINALLY! -- someone in the media is saying it aloud!
"Win in Iraq?" Give me a break. We can't even evacuate a major U.S. city in a timely and humane fashion. If the war in Iraq is being run ANYTHING like the relief efforts in New Orleans, then it's no wonder that we can't win in Iraq. Superpower my ass. And the whole world is watchng.

I am FURIOUS that the Louisiana and Mississippi National Guards are off in Iraq fighting Bush's manufactured war, when they should have been at home, prepared to respond to domestic emergencies. That's what they are for, not Imperial oil-grab excursions.

This whole affair has shown me that this country is collapsing in on itself. The idea that the government is here to help the people has been revealed as a lie. It's every man for himself.

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!
.

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