Spent a lovely day with artist friends at the Nuit Blanche in Griffintown so have decided to mention this other site of mine that’s dedicated to artistic stuff. huffpuppy is my site for home-made films and other things of that nature that come along. The price of gas is 1.34 a litre here in town, still cheaper than milk.
Tonight only/Mittenstrings do a short set during the Poetry Evening 7 – 9pm 141 Ann St in the Poetry Loft.
GRIFFINTOWN: Tonight is the Nuit Blanche in Montreal. Mitts to do a short set in the Poetry Loft at 141 Ann St between 7 and 9pm. They’re probably on halfway through the readings. And Academy Award-winning animator John Weldon is having a screening of his Ashcan Alley shorts, 242 Young St. also between 7 – 9 pm.
I hope these places are close to each other.
Again from counterpunch.org Castro Libya
Reprinted from COUNTERPUNCH.ORG
February 24, 2011
The Case Against Raymond Davis
The CIA’s Killing Spree in Lahore
By MIKE WHITNEY
When CIA-agent Raymond Davis gunned down two Pakistani civilians in broad daylight on a crowded street in Lahore, he probably never imagined that the entire Washington establishment would spring to his defense. But that’s precisely what happened. Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Mike Mullen, John Kerry, Leon Panetta and a number of other US bigwigs have all made appeals on Davis’s behalf. None of these stalwart defenders of “the rule of law” have shown a speck of interest in justice for the victims or of even allowing the investigation to go forward so they could know what really happened. Oh, no. What Clinton and the rest want, is to see their man Davis packed onto the next plane to Langley so he can play shoot-’em-up someplace else in the world.
Does Clinton know that after Davis shot his victims 5 times in the back, he calmly strode back to his car, grabbed his camera, and photographed the dead bodies? Does she know that the two so-called “diplomats” who came to his rescue in a Land Rover (which killed a passerby) have been secretly spirited out of the country so they won’t have to appear in court? Does she know that the families of the victims are now being threatened and attacked to keep them from testifying against Davis? Here’s a clip from Thursday’s edition of The Nation”:
“Three armed men forcibly gave poisonous pills to Muhammad Sarwar, the uncle of Shumaila Kanwal, the widow of Fahim shot dead by Raymond Davis, after barging into his house in Rasool Nagar, Chak Jhumra.
Sarwar was rushed to Allied Hospital in critical condition where doctors were trying to save his life till early Thursday morning. The brother of Muhammad Sarwar told The Nation that three armed men forced their entry into the house after breaking the windowpane of one of the rooms. When they broke the glass, Muhammad Sarwar came out. The outlaws started beating him up.
The other family members, including women and children, coming out for his rescue, were taken hostage and beaten up. The three outlaws then took everyone hostage at gunpoint and forced poisonous pills down Sarwar’s throat.” (“Shumaila’s uncle forced to take poisonous pills”, The Nation)
Good show, Hillary. We’re all about the rule of law in the good old USA.
But why all the intrigue and arm-twisting? Why has the State Department invoked the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations to make its case that Davis is entitled to diplomatic immunity? If Davis is innocent, then he has nothing to worry about, right? Why not let the trial go forward and stop reinforcing the widely-held belief that Davis is a vital cog in the US’s clandestine operations in Pakistan?
The truth is that Davis had been photographing sensitive installations and madrassas for some time, the kind of intelligence gathering that spies do when scouting-out prospective targets. Also, he’d been in close contact with members of terrorist organizations, which suggests a link between the CIA and terrorist incidents in Pakistan. Here’s an excerpt from Wednesday’s The Express Tribune:
“His cell phone has revealed contacts with two ancillaries of al Qaeda in Pakistan, Tehreek-e-Taliban of Pakistan (TTP) and sectarian Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), which has led to the public conclusion that he was behind terrorism committed against Pakistan’s security personnel and its people ….This will strike people as America in cahoots with the Taliban and al Qaeda against the state of Pakistan targeting, as one official opined, Pakistan’s nuclear installations.” (“Raymond Davis: The plot thickens, The Express Tribune)
“Al Qaeda”? The CIA is working with “ancillaries of al Qaeda in Pakistan”? No wonder the US media has been keeping a wrap on this story for so long.
Naturally, most Pakistanis now believe that the US is colluding with terrorists to spread instability, weaken the state, and increase its power in the region. But isn’t that America’s M.O. everywhere?
Also, many people noticed that US drone attacks suddenly stopped as soon as Davis was arrested. Was that a coincidence? Not likely. Davis was probably getting coordinates from his new buddies in the tribal hinterland and then passing them along to the Pentagon. The drone bombings are extremely unpopular in Pakistan. More then 1400 people have been killed since August 2008, and most of them have been civilians.
And, there’s more. This is from (Pakistan’s) The Nation:
“A local lawyer has moved a petition in the court of Additional District and Sessions … contending that the accused (Davis)… was preparing a map of sensitive places in Pakistan through the GPS system installed in his car. He added that mobile phone sims, lethal weapons, and videos camera were recovered from the murder accused on January 27, 2011.” (“Davis mapped Pakistan targets court told”, The Nation)
So, Davis’s GPS chip was being used to identify targets for drone attacks in the tribal region. Most likely, he was being assisted on the other end by recruits or members of the Tehreek-e-Taliban.
A lot of extravagant claims have been made about what Davis was up to, much of which is probably just speculation. One report which appeared on ANI news service is particularly dire, but produces little evidence to support its claims. Here’s an excerpt:
“Double murder-accused US official Raymond Davis has been found in possession of top-secret CIA documents, which point to him or the feared American Task Force 373 (TF373) operating in the region, providing Al-Qaeda terrorists with “nuclear fissile material” and “biological agents,” according to a report.
Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) is warning that the situation on the sub-continent has turned “grave” as it appears that open warfare is about to break out between Pakistan and the United States, The European Union Times reports…..The most ominous point in this SVR report is “Pakistan’s ISI stating that top-secret CIA documents found in Davis’s possession point to his, and/or TF373, providing to al Qaeda terrorists “nuclear fissile material” and “biological agents”, which they claim are to be used against the United States itself in order to ignite an all-out war in order to re-establish the West’s hegemony over a Global economy that is warned is just months away from collapse,” the paper added. (“CIA Spy Davis was giving nuclear bomb material to Al Qaeda, says report”, ANI)
Although there’s no way to prove that this is false, it seems like a bit of a stretch. But that doesn’t mean that what Davis was up to shouldn’t be taken seriously. Quite the contrary. If Davis was working with Tehreek-e-Taliban, (as alleged in many reports) then we can assume that the war on terror is basically a ruse to advance a broader imperial agenda. According to Sify News, the president of Pakistan, Asif Ali Zardari, believes this to be the case. Here’s an excerpt:
“Zalmay Khalilzad, the former US envoy to Afghanistan, once brushed off Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari’s claim, that the US was “arranging” the (suicide) attacks by Pakistani Taliban inside his country, as ‘madness’, and was of the view that both Zardari and Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who believed in this US conspiracy theory, were “dysfunctional” leaders.
The account of Zardari’s claim about the US’ hand in the attacks has been elaborately reproduced by US journalist Bob Woodward, on Page 116 of his famous book ‘Obama’s Wars,’ The News reported.
Woodward’s account goes like this: “One evening during the trilateral summit (in Washington, between Obama, Karzai and Zardari) Zardari had dinner with Zalmay Khalilzad, the 58-year-old former US ambassador to Afghanistan, Iraq and the UN, during the Bush presidency.
“Zardari dropped his diplomatic guard. He suggested that one of the two countries was arranging the attacks by the Pakistani Taliban inside his country: India or the US. Zardari didn’t think India could be that clever, but the US could. Karzai had told him the US was behind the attacks, confirming the claims made by the Pakistani ISI.”
“Mr President,” Khalilzad said, “what would we gain from doing this? You explain the logic to me.”
“This was a plot to destabilize Pakistan, Zardari hypothesized, so that the US could invade and seize its nuclear weapons. He could not explain the rapid expansion in violence otherwise. And the CIA had not pursued the leaders of the Pakistani Taliban, a group known as Tehreek-e-Taliban or TTP that had attacked the government. TTP was also blamed for the assassination of Zardari’s wife, Benazir Bhutto.” (“Pakistan President says CIA Involved in Plot to Destabilize Country and Seize Nukes”, Sify News)
Zardari’s claim will sound familiar to those who followed events in Iraq. Many people are convinced that the only rational explanation for the wave of bombings directed at civilians, was that the violence was caused by those groups who stood to gain from a civil war.
And who might that be?
Despite the Obama administration’s efforts to derail the investigation, the case against Davis is going forward. Whether he is punished or not is irrelevant. This isn’t about Davis anyway. It’s a question of whether the US is working hand-in-hand with the very organizations that it publicly condemns in order to advance its global agenda. If that’s the case, then the war on terror is a fraud.
Mike Whitney lives in Washington state and can be reached at email@example.com
If we are to believe these testimonials by U.S. and U.K. military personnel in this article from Montreal’s La Metropole (French) then we have a case of the Aliens and they’ve been around since the 40s. They like to disable missile silos. This is a good thing, no? I wonder if Russian military folk have had similar ‘encounters’ and believe in the presence of such phenomena? All I know is that something has disabled my hydro meter so that it doesn’t register my electrical usage, and I’m very appreciative. A Russian friend suggested it was ants that got in and gummed up the works. Another friend told me that for a while cockroaches were living in his meter and took him off the grid. Could Aliens just be some kind of helpful insect that drive around in flying saucers?
More like a backdate. On a Summer’s night in 1961 or 62 I was sitting outside with my parents and their friends. They were having cocktails and chatting and I had just arrived by bus from Montreal and was not part of the conversation. I was sitting facing the Northern sky when I spotted a very bright light that seemed to hover for the longest time. It was not on a plane with the planets or the stars. Much closer and there was no noise as one would expect from an airplane. Then suddenly it dove down and disappeared. I must have said something like ‘wow, that was strange’ because my parents wanted to know what I’d seen and why I hadn’t told them to look too. I was simply transfixed and couldn’t speak. Years later when the kids were in school I told them about my paranormal experience. They in turn shared it with their friends. One day a little boy in my son’s class said to me ‘Is it true you were kidnapped by aliens and went for a ride in a flying saucer?’
Here’s a pic of the now dismantled Norad Radar station of Lac St Denis which was just to the North (maybe 20 miles) of where we were in St Sauveur when I saw the bright white light. The big white dome is gone. Is it possible that I witnessed something similar to what these air force guys saw?
Here’s how I imagine one looks.
Talk about not being on the same (right) page. I inadvertly posted this on the Gardencourt site, which is the family site. Why can’t wordpress read my mind. It redirected me automatically to gardencourt after I’d typed in annamation. GR…..Sorry, courtiers.
-I would have thought Huffpo was worth a lot more than 300 million. I think having all those links to sensational stories cheapened it. It was better as a political blog and the commenters were smarter back then. I’m wondering if the way Al-jazeera English has come on in a big big way rushed Arianna into this forced marriage with AOL. And of course there was the scare of the Daily Beast, a digital rag now, but it never had the cachet Huffpo had, plummy British editor Tina Brown notwithstanding. Al-jazeera is relatively pure in that it sticks to political stories and it’s anchors are fully clothed though some have been showing more chest of late, drawing the line at cleavage. Our satellite provider has started giving it to us for free hoping we’ll be regular subscribers. I think we’re sold.
Vis a vis CNN, I like Piers Morgan a lot and he should pick up more discriminating viewers for the network.
NPR host Tom Ashcroft is sounding alarmist as he grills some Egyptian mouthpiece with stuff like ‘what if Egypt falls into the hands of religious fundamentalists?’ Hello, Tom! What about the religious fundamentalists calling the shots in your own Government?