Tuesday, Oct 06th

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American Conservative: It was Feith’s office, not CIA, that forged the Habbush letter.

Ron Suskind’s new book alleges that the White House ordered the CIA to forge a letter from the head of Iraqi intelligence to Saddam Hussein linking the dictator to the 9/11 terrorists. The American Conservative’s Philip Giraldi argues today that “an extremely reliable and well placed source in the intelligence community” told him Suskind’s overall claim “is correct,” but that it was Douglas Feith’s Office of Special Plans — not the CIA — that forged the letter:

My source also notes that Dick Cheney, who was behind the forgery, hated and mistrusted the Agency and would not have used it for such a sensitive assignment. Instead, he went to Doug Feith’s Office of Special Plans and asked them to do the job. … It was Feith’s office that produced the letter and then surfaced it to the media in Iraq. Unlike the [Central Intelligence] Agency, the Pentagon had no restrictions on it regarding the production of false information to mislead the public. Indeed, one might argue that Doug Feith’s office specialized in such activity.


White House memo exposes Rove knew of problems with anthrax vaccine

The Department of Defense continued its controversial mandatory anthrax vaccinations program despite high ranking Bush administration officials acknowledging there were problems with the vaccine within months of the Bush administration taking office—well before the 9/11 attacks and the October 2001 anthrax letters.

A 2001 memorandum from former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove to then-Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz indicates that the White House knew of problems relating to the Gulf War Syndrome and the military's controversial anthrax vaccine.


Bin Laden's driver gets 66 months confinement

A six-member U.S. military jury Thursday sentenced Osama bin Laden's driver to 66 months in prison.

With credit extended by the judge for time already served, that likely means he will serve five months before being sent back to the normal population. Jurors deliberated just 70 minutes after a sentencing hearing in which Salim Hamdan, 40, expressed regret and apologized for any pain his actions caused victims of al Qaeda.


China on Bush: Don't interfere in our affairs

China rejected President Bush's criticism Thursday of its human rights record and restrictions on religion, diplomatically telling him to stay out of its affairs only hours before he arrived in Beijing to attend the Olympics.

In a speech in Bangkok outlining America's achievements and challenges in Asia, Bush pushed for a free press, free assembly and labor rights in China, and against its detentions of political dissidents, human rights advocates and religious activists. He said he wasn't trying to antagonize China, but called such reform the only path the potent U.S. rival can take to reach its full potential.


Navy says sub leaked radiation since 2006

Officials also have told the governments of Malaysia and Singapore that the sub made port calls to those countries while leaking the radioactive water, Navy officials said. The Houston also made stops in Guam and Hawaii.

Officials with knowledge of the incident could not quantify the radiation level but insisted it was "negligible" and an "extremely low level." The total amount of radioactivity that leaked while the sub was in port in Guam, Japan and Hawaii was less than a half of a microcurie (0.0000005 curies), or less than what is found in a 50-pound bag of lawn and garden fertilizer, the officials said.


Mexican soldiers enter Arizona, hold agent briefly

Four Mexican soldiers crossed into Arizona and held a U.S. Border Patrol agent at gunpoint before realizing where they were and returning to Mexico, federal authorities said Wednesday.

The confrontation occurred early Sunday on the Tohono O'odham Indian Reservation, about 85 miles southwest of Tucson, in an area fenced only with barbed wire, said Dove Crawford, a spokeswoman for the Border Patrol.


500: Deadly U.S. Milestone in Afghan War

June was the second deadliest month for the military in Afghanistan since the war began, with 23 American deaths from hostilities, compared with 22 in Iraq. July was less deadly, with 20 deaths, compared with six in Iraq. On July 22, nearly seven years after the conflict began on Oct. 7, 2001, the United States lost its 500th soldier in the Afghanistan war.


U.S. Paying Through the Nose for Poor Quality Health Care

American medical care is the most expensive in the world, and it is definitely not worth every penny. A recent study by the Commonwealth Fund highlights the stark contrast between what the United States spends on its health system and the quality of care it delivers.

The report shows that the United States spends more than twice as much on each person for health care as most other industrialized countries. But it has fallen to last place among those countries in preventing avoidable deaths through use of timely and effective medical care.


The Lies Of Hiroshima Are The Lies Of Today

In the immediate aftermath of the bomb, the allied occupation authorities banned all mention of radiation poisoning and insisted that people had been killed or injured only by the bomb's blast. It was the first big lie.

The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was a criminal act on an epic scale. It was premeditated mass murder that unleashed a weapon of intrinsic criminality.

The most enduring lie is that the atomic bomb was dropped to end the war in the Pacific and save lives. "Even without the atomic bombing attacks," concluded the United States Strategic Bombing Survey of 1946, "air supremacy over Japan could have exerted sufficient pressure to bring about unconditional surrender and obviate the need for invasion. Based on a detailed investigation of all the facts, and supported by the testimony of the surviving Japanese leaders involved, it is the Survey's opinion that ... Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated."


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