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Obama’s “Peace” Plan Involves U.S. Troops There Till 2024, Views Of May Day Protests

May 3rd, 2012 - by:

“Peace In New York?”

•New Dissector Opinion Piece On AlJazeera on The Ideas and Vision Behind Occupy This is not about “replacing” Occupy.

Occupy Afghanistan?

And so while Occupy was marching for justice. President Obama was wheeling and dealing with Hamid Karzai in Kabul, unveiling what he was calling an end to the war in Afghanistan.

It was his “Mission Accomplished Moment” as he unveiled a plan that would keep the US in that country until 2024 and permit 20,000 US troops to be stationed there. So much for “peace.”

So much for the fiction of NATO’s “partnership.”

This deal underscored that the war Obama is worrying about is mot in Afghanistan, but here at home. Kabul was a campaign stop. He is using the war as a prop, its symbolic end as a political pronouncement.

The Taliban reacted quickly, as you will read. But first, , here’s more on the trip and the deceptive speech.

The National Journal seemed to be impressed.

Major Garret wrote: “Charlie Wilson’s War; Obama’s Peace?

“Embedded deep within President Obama’s appearance in Afghanistan was a post-Cold War commander-in-chief’s declaration he wouldn’t repeat the mistakes of his Cold War predecessors. Obama didn’t say it in so many words, but his 11-minute address to the nation from Bagram Air Base was a promise to wage Charlie Wilson’s war under the guise of Obama’s peace.”

It won’t work, says journalist Gareth Porter who has been focused om the details of the deal.

WASHINGTON, May 2, 2012 (IPS) – The optics surrounding the Barack
Obama administration’s “Enduring Strategic Partnership” agreement with
Afghanistan and the Memorandums of Understanding accompanying it
emphasize transition to Afghan responsibility and an end to U.S. war.

But the only substantive agreement reached between the U.S. and
Afghanistan – well hidden in the agreements – has been to allow
powerful U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF) to continue to carry out
the unilateral night raids on private homes that are universally hated
in the Pashtun zones of Afghanistan.

The presentation of the new agreement on a surprise trip by President
Obama to Afghanistan, with a prime time presidential address and
repeated briefings for the press, allows Obama to go into a tight
presidential election campaign on a platform of ending an unpopular
U.S. war in Afghanistan.

It also allows President Hamid Karzai to claim he has gotten control
over the SOF night raids while getting a 10-year commitment of U.S.
economic support.

But the actual text of the agreement and of the Memorandum of
Understanding (MOU) on night raids included in it by reference will
not end the U.S. war in Afghanistan, nor will they give Karzai control
over night raids.

More critical perspectives were shared by the Institute of Public Accuracy

An ex-solider there, Jacob George, says: “The agreement actually allows for sustaining a ‘post-conflict’ force of 20,000 to 30,000 troops for a continued training of indigenous forces. They are pretending this is something new, but it’s not. That’s what I was doing in 2001 — and 2002, 2003 and 2004. This is just disastrous, for ten years, with the greatest military the world has ever seen, we’ve been unable to defeat people with RPGs. And a year after Bin Laden was killed, we’re still planning to keep tens of thousands of troops there.”

Why no say for Afghans, ask the Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers: “While the world may accept that the U.S. and Afghan governments have some ’state’ or ‘noble’ considerations for not revealing the contents of the U.S. Afghan Strategic Partnership Agreement, how about the democratic consideration of involving Afghans in their own future?



”Even the Afghan Parliament was in the dark and uninvolved until they were recently given a peek when Afghanistan’s National Security Advisor, Rangin Dadfar Spanta, read ‘portions’ of the Agreement to assembled parliamentarians on 23rd April, saying that the U.S. will defend Afghanistan from any outside interference via ‘diplomatic means, political means, economic means and even military means.’

Photo of the Day: From Khandahar via Guardian Eyewitness

Independent journalist Michael Yon who has covered the war there for years called Obama’s visit “meaningless.{” He reported that he received several communiqués from the Taliban about their swift attacks on key bases in response.

Here’s part of one of them, Note the language:

“A team of four heroic combatants of Islamic Emirate Ahmad (Parwan province), Muhammad Raza (Kabul), Abdul Bari (Wardak) and Hameed Khan (Takhar), armed with heavy and small arms and explosives, stormed the target, the “Green Village” with Ahmad slamming his explosive-laden vehicle at the gate of the base, rocking the entire base and removing all the security checks and barriers besides flattening some of the rooms where a great number of the security guards were based. Several dozen of the US-NATO and puppets cowardly forces security were killed and wounded. Three out four martyrdom-seeking Mujahideen, after getting into the base, initiated fighting with rockets, heavy and light machine guns, hand grenades and explosive vests till 10 a.m. local time, targeting those inside and killing at least 34 US-Nato forces officers and soldiers as well as taking out more than 9 puppets security guards.

“The operation came as a response to Obama’s visit to Afghanistan and was a worst single-day loss for the US-Nato terrorists after Kabul operation in which Mujahideen had targeted the main ISAF base, and a series of embassies, parliament, presidential house and a number of the enemy’s military bases and posts in Kabul city. It is known to all that no civilian can show up even hundreds of maters away from the any military facility and, in particular, such military facility with strategic importance, no way! Thus the western-influenced mainstream media claims about civilian casualties are absolutely false and everyone knows it.”

This is who “we” are fighting, voices we never hear.

•Common Dreams: One Year After Bin Laden’s Death, Bring the Troops Home Now
by Kevin Martin and Michael Eisenscher

More

•Daily Beast: A Strategist for the War In Afghanistan Says It’s Time to Pull Back

•ABC: Pentagon Cyber Command: Higher Status Recommended

Two Views On Occupy

The NY Times buried the May Day protests on P20. AM New York put it on its over with shot of a White Shirt grabbing a protester under the headline: MAY FRAY--Protester clash with police around city, a totally misleading headline.

Reader Supported News: A Massive Comeback

Or:

Right-Wing Responds To Occupy: Bill Wilson calls May Day a “Missed Opportunity”

“Occupy movement once again took to the streets, this time to celebrate International Workers’ Day, a leftist, invented holiday that was originally founded to promote Marxist and labor movement ideology. Eventually, it even became a national holiday of the then-Soviet Union to promote the workers’ revolution.
The ostensible idea behind the protest, as with its preceding Occupy Wall Street events, was a general strike of workers and students to shut down the economy and protest corporate “greed”. But as CNBC.com’s Jeff Cox reported in New York, “the total turnout for the morning marches wouldn’t have shut down a decent-sized side street in the Bronx, let alone any major roads in the financial capital of the world.”

In other words, like last fall’s protests, Occupy’s May Day protests failed in their stated objectives to disrupt economic activity. This time, barely anybody noticed, unless one happened to catch a report of the smattering of protests on television or on the Internet

It is perhaps an example where the reality does not measure up to the hype.

Read more at NetRightDaily.com: http://netrightdaily.com/2012/05/occupys-missed-opportunity/#ixzz1tjBZq8Dq

•Reuters: San Francisco police seize building from protesters, 26 arrested

Video Via Kevin Powell: After Trayvon, Black Boys Speak

Economy

•Guardian: American CEOs enjoy 15% pay rise in second year of double-digit hikes

Boom time for America’s top bosses in 2011 contrasts with wider economy, where average wages have been little better than flat

*International Herald Tribune: Jobless rate climbs to record high in euro zone

FRANKFURT — Unemployment in the euro zone rose to a new high in March, according to figures released on Wednesday, which came a few days before crucial elections in France and Greece, and which are likely to intensify calls for an easing of the region’s austerity drive.

Unemployment in the 17 countries that belong to the euro zone rose to 10.9 percent in March from 10.8 percent in February, according to Eurostat, the European Union’s statistics agency. In March 2011, the rate was 9.9 percent, a number that illustrates the deterioration of the area’s economy during the past year.
The monthly increase, the 11th in a row, translates into more than 17 million jobless people, and is in line with other recent indicators showing that the euro zone economy remains distressed. Manufacturing in the zone hit a 34-month low in April, according to a survey of purchasing managers released Wednesday by the research firm Markit.

Greece and France will hold national elections on Sunday, when citizens are expected to register their discontent at the decline in living standards and public services that has been a consequence of government budget cutting. Leaders could come to power who appear unwilling to continue the austerity programs pushed by North European countries, especially Germany.

•Fluent: ‘Fed regulator: Bank reforms losing steam’

Did A Say: We Will Wipe Out Israel?

Bill Blum, Anti-Empire Report: The Israeli-American-Iranian-Holocaust-NobelPeacePrize Circus

It’s a textbook case of how the American media is at its worst when it comes to US foreign policy and particularly when an Officially Designated Enemy (ODE) is involved. I’ve discussed this case several times in this report in recent years. The ODE is Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The accusation has been that he had threatened violence against Israel, based on his 2005 remark calling for “wiping Israel off the map”. Who can count the number of times this has been repeated in every kind of media, in every country of the world, without questioning the accuracy of what was reported? A Lexis-Nexis search of “All News (English)” for for the past seven years produced the message: “This search has been interrupted because it will return more than 3000 results.”

As I’ve pointed out, Ahmadinejad’s “threat of violence” was a serious misinterpretation, one piece of evidence being that the following year he declared: “The Zionist regime will be wiped out soon, the same way the Soviet Union was, and humanity will achieve freedom.” 2 Obviously, he was not calling for any kind of violent attack upon Israel, for the dissolution of the Soviet Union took place remarkably peacefully. But the myth of course continued.

Now, finally, we have the following exchange from the radio-TV simulcast, Democracy Now!, of April 19:

A top Israeli official has acknowledged that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad never said that Iran seeks to “wipe Israel off the face of the map.” The falsely translated statement has been widely attributed to Ahmadinejad and used repeatedly by U.S. and Israeli government officials to back military action and sanctions against Iran. But speaking to Teymoor Nabili of the network Al Jazeera, Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor admitted Ahmadinejad had been misquoted.

Teymoor Nabili: “As we know, Ahmadinejad didn’t say that he plans to exterminate Israel, nor did he say that Iran policy is to exterminate Israel. Ahmadinejad’s position and Iran’s position always has been, and they’ve made this — they’ve said this as many times as Ahmadinejad has criticized Israel, he has said as many times that he has no plans to attack Israel. …”

Dan Meridor: “Well, I have to disagree, with all due respect. You speak of Ahmadinejad. I speak of Khamenei, Ahmadinejad, Rafsanjani, Shamkhani. I give the names of all these people. They all come, basically ideologically, religiously, with the statement that Israel is an unnatural creature, it will not survive. They didn’t say, ‘We’ll wipe it out,’ you’re right. But ‘It will not survive, it is a cancerous tumor that should be removed,’ was said just two weeks ago again.”

Teymoor Nabili: “Well, I’m glad you’ve acknowledged that they didn’t say they will wipe it out.”

So that’s that. Right? Of course not. Fox News, NPR, CNN, NBC, et al. will likely continue to claim that Ahmadinejad threatened violence against Israel, threatened to “wipe it off the map”.

And that’s only Ahmadinejad the Israeli Killer. There’s still Ahmadinejad the Holocaust Denier. So until a high Israeli official finally admits that that too is a lie, keep in mind that Ahmadinejad has never said simply, clearly, unambiguously, and unequivocally that he thinks that what we historically know as the Holocaust never happened. He has instead commented about the peculiarity and injustice of a Holocaust which took place in Europe resulting in a state for the Jews in the Middle East instead of in Europe. Why are the Palestinians paying a price for a German crime? he asks.

Other News

The Atlantic: Huge Round of Arrests for $450 Million in Medicare Fraud

Press Freedom

EJC: The U.N. and media rights groups marking World Press Freedom Day say the Arab Spring has eased the grip of some governments on journalism but many nations still use tactics to repress the media. In a joint statement on Thursday, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UNESCO leader Irina Bokova said changes in the Arab world have shown the “power for aspirations for rights when combined with new and old media.”

•Mail&Guardian, South Africa: SA’s status as a “beacon” for press freedom continues to be threatened by increased state involvement, says the South African National Editors Forum.

•Report from Aavaaz: “Right now, the Avaaz website is under massive attack. An expert is telling us that an attack this large is likely coming from a government or large corporation, with massive, simultaneous and sophisticated assaults from across the world to take down our site.

We were expecting this. Our people-powered campaigning has been fearless, and we’ve taken on the world’s worst actors head-on, in ways that genuinely hurt them – from the Syrian and Chinese regimes to Rupert Murdoch, Big Oil and organized crime. The Syrian dictatorship called our campaigner ‘the most dangerous man in the world’, and a UK inquiry recently revealed emails between Murdoch’s news corporation and top levels of government saying the Avaaz campaign against Murdoch was their biggest concern.

•Flipboard:
Harvard and MIT Bring Their Courses to the Online Masses for Free

Humor: Andy Borowitz: Romney Pays Surprise Visit to his Money in the Caymans
No Timetable for Withdrawal, Says Presumptive Nominee

CAYMAN ISLANDS (The Borowitz Report) – In an uncharacteristically emotional scene for the presumptive GOP nominee, Mitt Romney today paid a surprise visit to his money in the Cayman Islands.

Speaking in a bank vault surrounded by stacks of cash, Mr. Romney praised his money for “the brave work you have done in the never-ending fight for freedom from Federal income tax.”

“Thanks to your hard work, losers around the world are envious of me,” he added. “For that I salute you.”

Stressing that his money’s mission in the Caymans was “far from over,” he refused to set any timetable for withdrawal.

That’s The News Dissector blog for today. As always, comments welcome. Write Dissector@mediachannel.org