Friday, September 28, 2007
Marching Towards Hell': America and Islam After Iraq
Through Our Enemies' Eyes: Osama bin Laden, Radical Islam, and the Future of America
Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Here is mine.
WHAT ABOUT THE CHILDREN?
I see most of what is to be said here has already been said.
I agree we all need equal access to information for this society, economy, democracy to work.
But most people are here to promote their own economic or political interest, I want to speek for the kids.
This experiment called AMERICA was based upon free speech and equal access to political power, but how can you speak for yourself if you don’t know what is going on, if you don’t have even a basic education. If you don’t have access to information, you have no political power.
The public education system has failed our children.
The public political system ignores them completely.
Without free high-speed internet access there is nothing to balance the neglect, no oppertunity for our youth to educate themselves, and become something more than slaves for the rich and powerful.
It begins with the access, the intelligent will rise to the top, but unless kids have access to the information, they will be doomed to fight for survival and compete with eachother to the death. Instead of striving to reach our collective potential, generations will be stuck in the ever increasing spirial of poverty, ignorance, and fear.
Keep networks neutral.
Make the big PRIVATE, for profit corporations pay for the PUBLIC Bandwith they USE.
Do it for the future.
Do it for the kids.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Beth Hammer has turned her gated Wheat Ridge community upside down with her upside-down display of the U.S. flag.
On March 19 - the fourth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq - Hammer decided to hang her flag upside down, which under the federal flag code is a signal of distress.
The 64-year-old retired banker said flying the flag with the white-starred blue field - called the union - on the bottom is her silent protest.
"I think the war in Iraq has put this country in distress," Hammer said. "We are losing lives, liberty and our honor."
Hammer contends displaying the U.S. flag upside down is her First Amendment right of free speech. She has hired a Denver civil rights lawyer, Mari Newman.
Why is the US Flag diplayed Upside Down?
The upside down U.S. flag is an official signal of distress. It is not meant to be, and is not officially recognized as any type of disrespect when so displayed for the right reasons. To the contrary, here is the relevant part of the US Code of Laws regarding how to fly the flag when in distress:
THE FLAG CODE
Title 36, U.S.C., Chapter 10
As amended by P.L. 344, 94th Congress
Approved July 7, 1976
§ 176. Respect for flag: No disrespect should be shown to the flag of the United States of America; the flag should not be dipped to any person or thing. Regimental colors, State flags, and organization or institutional flags are to be dipped as a mark of honor.
(a) The flag should never be displayed with the union down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property.
Most individuals who have served in the military service of our nation will (or should) recognize this signal.
As a result of the many traitors and enemies we as a free people have, both foreign and domestic, as a result of the many unconstitutional acts, legislation, and atrocities passed and/or committed against US citizens and their life, liberty and property, and as a result of policies that allow a porous border policy, I believe the life, liberty and property of US Citizens are in dire danger and distress.
Neural Networks as Models of the Mind - FULL CSE 87 B00 Section ID: 602103 Cottrell, Gary (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) Location: EBU3B B270 Wednesdays, 9:00 a.m. to 10:50 a.m. Seminar will meet October 10, 24, 31: November 7, 14. Discuss models of reading, memory, face recognition, acessing word meanings and learning. Use existing computer programs to run the models & experience how they work. Last day, a tour of professor lab & have a demonstration of facial expression recognition, using the class as subjects.
How People Learn: Getting the Most from your UCSD Experience - CANCELLED CSE 87 A00 Section ID: 602102 Simon, Beth (Email: email@example.com) Location: TBA Date and Time: TBA Meeting Dates: TBA School – it’s been a central part of your life to date. But have you ever taken a class on “how to learn”? What does the scientific research say about how people learn? Can you use their findings to make for a better learning experience for you?
How to Take Risks - FULL ECON 87 A00 Section ID: 605106 Machina, Mark (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) Location: SEQ 244 Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10:00 a.m. to 10:50 a.m. Seminar will meet October 2, 4, 9, 11, 16, 18, 23, 25, 29; November 1. How to formulate risky choices, make intelligent decisions, and avoid common pitfalls. Economic versus psychological theories of risky choice.
War in the Theatre: From the Greeks to the Present HITO 87 A00 Section ID: 605107 Parrish, Michael (Email: email@example.com) Location: HSS 5086 Mondays, 2:00 p.m. to 2:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 1, 8, 15, 22, 29; November 5, 19, 26; December 3. How dramatists over the centuries have explored the impact of war on societies. Among the plays to be read are The Trojan Women, Mother Courage, and Henry V.
A People's History of UC San Diego - FULL LTAM 87 A00 Section ID: 606448 Mariscal, Jorge (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) Location: CCC Conference Room Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12:00 p.m. to 12:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 2, 4, 9, 11, 16, 18, 23, 25. An introduction to the unofficial history of UCSD. We will study the establishment of institutional features that allowed UCSD to become a privileged enclave. We will also explore campus social movements that worked to democratize the university and hold it accountable to non-elite communities.
Math in the Movies - FULL MATH 87 A00 Section ID: 605111 Bunch, James (Email: email@example.com) Location: APM 6402 Wednesdays, 4:00 p.m. to 5:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 3, 10, 17, 24. Does studying math lead to mental instability and madness, or to social awkwardness and nerdiness? We will view four films and discuss the portrayal of math and mathematicians in them.
Teaching Math: The Challenge - FULL MATH 87 B00 Section ID: 609939 Stevens, Laura (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) Location: APM 7421 Mondays, 11:00 a.m. to 11:50 a.m. Seminar will meet October 8, 15, 22, 29; November 5, 19, 26; December 3. Why do so many students seem unable or unwilling to learn mathematics? Which of the difficulties students have in mathematics are due to ineffective instruction and which are inevitable? How can teaching make mathematics stimulating for all students? How can a teaching career be fulfilling?
New Cosmology - FULL MAE 87 A00 Section ID: 607304 Gibson, Carl (Email: email@example.com) Location: EBU II 479 Wednesdays, 8:00 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. Seminar will meet October 10, 24; November 7, 21. New observations from a variety of space and earth telescopes require new ideas about how the universe appeared in the first place and how structures like galaxies, stars and planets formed.
Climate Change, Global Warming - FULL SIO 87 A00 Section ID: 603394 Wahlen, Martin (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) Location: York 3030 Tuesdays, 11:00 a.m. to 11:50 a.m. Seminar will meet October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30; November 6, 13, 20, 27; December 4. Elements of physics of climate and principles of the green house effect will be introduced. The basics of the global cycles of radiatively important atmospheric trace gases will be discussed. Data and evidence for global warming will be presented.
Music and Emotion PSYC 87 C00 Section ID: Konecni, Vladimir (Email: email@example.com) Location: MNDLER 1507 Wednesdays, 12:00 p.m. to 12:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 3, 10, 17, 24, 31; Novmber 7, 14, 21. This seminar will explore the psychological effects that music (from Baroque to rock & rap) has on listeners. For example, does music produce emotional states that are qualitatively different from those that occur in social interactions?
Individuality and Conformity: The Social Bases of Personal Preferences - FULL SOCL 87 C00 Section ID: 599133 Skrentny, John (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) Location: SSB 414 Wednesdays, 1:00 p.m. to 2:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 3, 10, 17, 24. We all have personal preferences regarding beauty, happiness, fairness, or what is "cool," yet social forces powerfully shape these supposedly individual choices. In this seminar we will explore how factors such as marketing and power relations shape our tastes.
Student Activism - CANCELLED SOCL 87 B00 Section ID: 599132 Haydu, Jeffrey (Email: email@example.com) Location: SSB 101 Mondays, 3:00 p.m. to 4:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 1, 8, 15, 22. University students are often in the front ranks of protest movements. We will compare student activism in the 1960s with today's, asking why students are so often involved and how activism has changed in its prevalence, style, and goals.
Smart Structures: Reality, Potential and Challenges SE 87 A00 Section ID: 606931 Lanza Di Scalea, Francesco (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) Location: SERF 232 Mondays, 1:00 p.m. to 2:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 1, 8, 15, 22. Overview of "nerves" (sensors), "muscles" (actuators), and "brain" (processing) that make a structure actively respond to the outside world.
Theatre and Dance in Performance - FULL TDGE 87 B00 Section ID: 602966 Rouse, John (Email: email@example.com) Location: GH 170 Wednesdays, 3:00 p.m. to 3:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 3, 10, 17, 24, 31; November 7, 14, 21. Discussion of the role of theatre and dance in American culture with UCSD Department of Theatre and Dance productions as the point of reference. Students will see productions and have open forums with actors, directors and designers. Tickets will be $5.00 each for non-majors, free for majors.
Intolerance - FULL POLI 87 B00 Section ID: 605118 Forman-Barzilai, Fonna (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) Location: SSB 353 Wednesdays, 11:00 a.m. to 12:50 p.m. Seminar will meet October 3, 10, 17, 24. What is tolerance? What is intolerance? Is one more "natural" than the other? In this seminar we will draw on literature, film and case studies to reflect on why groups are so often intolerant toward others, how intolerance is learned and perpetuated, and how it might be overcome.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
What kind of coward stands by and lets a man get tourtured and beaten in front of him?
John Kerry could have stopped the cops at any time by simply telling them to let the boy speak, was he too afraid to answer the questions?
ANSWER ANDREW MEYER'S QUESTIONS:
1) Was John Kerry in the same secret fraternity as G.W.Bush (Skull and Bones) at Yale?
2) Why did John Kerry so readily conced the 2004 election when so much voter fraud was evident?
3) Why doesn't Senator Kerry call for impeachment before G. W. Bush invades Iran?
Even George W. Bush has the leadership to let his opponents ask their questions. Why didn't you do something?
Everyone Please Watch the videos on U-Tube, thank GOD for U-Tube, or this kid would have disappeared!
Judge for yourself
After they attacked
What happended to FREE SPEACH IN AMERICA?
How come you can't ask honest questions on college campuses anymore?
Andrew Meyer has the guts to stand up for himself, his freedom, and ours, that is something John Kerry apparently lacks.
Why did they tazer him when four or five cops had him pinned and handcuffed on the ground?
Why didn't everyone in that room get up and walk out?
Why didn't they defend him?
Why did they stop Andrew from asking his question, but never arrested him?
(it is illegal to detain, or even touch an individual, unless you put them under arrest, and Andrew kept asking them if they were arresting him, and although it is hard to hear, the woman cop kept saying no, because if they had arrested Andrew they have to give a reason why, and he wasn't doing anything illegal, and that would have opened the campus police up to a lawsuit for false arrest. Too bad they never arrested him, because now all Andrew can do legally is sue those six cops indivdually, and file charges for assult, illegeal detention, violation of First Amendment Rights, and distrupting a public meeting.)
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
US News and World Report
What if Iraq hired a private security firm to protect it from Blackwater?
For Some Americans, Mission in Iraq Unclear
Deciphering the Changing Mission in Iraq
Survey Puts Iraqis War Dead Above One Million (1.2 million to be exact)
Go see the film, and use it to change the debate.
This Friday, September 21st 2007, Oscar award winning director and writer Paul Haggis (Crash, Million Dollar Baby) releases his new movie, In the Valley of Elah (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0478134/). The movie, starring Tommy Lee Jones and Susan Sarandon, is about soldiers returning home from Iraq and the psychological effects they endure once they return. It is a stunning anti war film which will have a profound impact on anyone that watches it.
When the film enters wide release throughout the US on the 21st, we want to have Kucinich supporters at every theatre in the nation to accomplish four things:
Go see the film – you need to see it to talk about it.
And ... when people are walking out of the theatre ...
Talk to people about the film, how they feel about the war, are they concerned about another war in Iran, do they realize the Neo Conservative Republicans and Democrats have no intention of bringing our soldiers home before the election ...
Hand out literature:
Strength through Peace Doctrine,
Out of Iraq Plan,
Get email addresses of people who want more information on how to change American Foreign Policy and get out of Iraq.
The film will be in theatres for many weeks, but it will be important to get as many supporters out during the initial release as possible.
PAUL HAGGIS, VALLEY OF ELAH, CANVASSING HOUSE PARTY CONFERENCE CALL - SEPTEMBER 20th
We will be having a nationwide Kucinich for President House Party and Conference call this Thursday, September 20th, the evening before In the Valley of Elah hits theaters nationwide.
The purpose of the house party is to get our supporters prepared to canvass cinemas nationwide. In order to get you in the right frame of mind, we are extremely pleased to announce that Academy Award winning writer and director, Paul Haggis (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0353673/), will be calling into the conference call at 9:00PM EST to speak with our supporters and talk about his incredible film.
This will be a great way to get people excited about participating in your house party! Call our national Office toll-free 877-413-3664 to host a house party. Once you have indicated that you will host a house party, we will send you the conference call phone number and access code.
HOUSE PARTY HOST CONTEST – VIP TICKET TO NH DEBATE
In addition, we have an exciting contest we will be holding. Through a random drawing, we will pick a house party host who will join Elizabeth Kucinich in the audience at the NBC Presidential Debate at Hanover, New Hampshire on Wednesday evening, September 26th.
We hope you will be able to host or attend a house party (big or small) and be involved in this exciting campaign event. If you have any questions, feel free to contact the campaign’s National Field Director, Vin Gopal at 732-299-5625 or email@example.com
National Campaign Manager
Kucinich for President
Thursday, September 13, 2007
"The victims, Staff Sgt. Yance T. Gray, 26, and Sgt. Omar Mora, 28, were among the authors of “The War as We Saw It,” in which they expressed doubts about reports of progress." They were not killed in combat, nor on a daring mission. They died when the five-ton cargo truck in which they were riding overturned. “We need not talk about our morale,” they wrote in closing. “As committed soldiers, we will see this mission through.”
And they did.
Here is their origional letter:
As Printed in th New York Times Opinion Editorial Section
August 19, 2007
The War as We Saw It
By BUDDHIKA JAYAMAHA, WESLEY D. SMITH, JEREMY ROEBUCK, OMAR MORA, EDWARD SANDMEIER, YANCE T. GRAY and JEREMY A. MURPHY
VIEWED from Iraq at the tail end of a 15-month deployment, the political debate in Washington is indeed surreal. Counterinsurgency is, by definition, a competition between insurgents and counterinsurgents for the control and support of a population. To believe that Americans, with an occupying force that long ago outlived its reluctant welcome, can win over a recalcitrant local population and win this counterinsurgency is far-fetched. As responsible infantrymen and noncommissioned officers with the 82nd Airborne Division soon heading back home, we are skeptical of recent press coverage portraying the conflict as increasingly manageable and feel it has neglected the mounting civil, political and social unrest we see every day. (Obviously, these are our personal views and should not be seen as official within our chain of command.)
The claim that we are increasingly in control of the battlefields in Iraq is an assessment arrived at through a flawed, American-centered framework. Yes, we are militarily superior, but our successes are offset by failures elsewhere. What soldiers call the “battle space” remains the same, with changes only at the margins. It is crowded with actors who do not fit neatly into boxes: Sunni extremists, Al Qaeda terrorists, Shiite militiamen, criminals and armed tribes. This situation is made more complex by the questionable loyalties and Janus-faced role of the Iraqi police and Iraqi Army, which have been trained and armed at United States taxpayers’ expense.
A few nights ago, for example, we witnessed the death of one American soldier and the critical wounding of two others when a lethal armor-piercing explosive was detonated between an Iraqi Army checkpoint and a police one. Local Iraqis readily testified to American investigators that Iraqi police and Army officers escorted the triggermen and helped plant the bomb. These civilians highlighted their own predicament: had they informed the Americans of the bomb before the incident, the Iraqi Army, the police or the local Shiite militia would have killed their families.
As many grunts will tell you, this is a near-routine event. Reports that a majority of Iraqi Army commanders are now reliable partners can be considered only misleading rhetoric. The truth is that battalion commanders, even if well meaning, have little to no influence over the thousands of obstinate men under them, in an incoherent chain of command, who are really loyal only to their militias.
Similarly, Sunnis, who have been underrepresented in the new Iraqi armed forces, now find themselves forming militias, sometimes with our tacit support. Sunnis recognize that the best guarantee they may have against Shiite militias and the Shiite-dominated government is to form their own armed bands. We arm them to aid in our fight against Al Qaeda.
However, while creating proxies is essential in winning a counterinsurgency, it requires that the proxies are loyal to the center that we claim to support. Armed Sunni tribes have indeed become effective surrogates, but the enduring question is where their loyalties would lie in our absence. The Iraqi government finds itself working at cross purposes with us on this issue because it is justifiably fearful that Sunni militias will turn on it should the Americans leave.
In short, we operate in a bewildering context of determined enemies and questionable allies, one where the balance of forces on the ground remains entirely unclear. (In the course of writing this article, this fact became all too clear: one of us, Staff Sergeant Murphy, an Army Ranger and reconnaissance team leader, was shot in the head during a “time-sensitive target acquisition mission” on Aug. 12; he is expected to survive and is being flown to a military hospital in the United States.) While we have the will and the resources to fight in this context, we are effectively hamstrung because realities on the ground require measures we will always refuse — namely, the widespread use of lethal and brutal force.
Given the situation, it is important not to assess security from an American-centered perspective. The ability of, say, American observers to safely walk down the streets of formerly violent towns is not a resounding indicator of security. What matters is the experience of the local citizenry and the future of our counterinsurgency. When we take this view, we see that a vast majority of Iraqis feel increasingly insecure and view us as an occupation force that has failed to produce normalcy after four years and is increasingly unlikely to do so as we continue to arm each warring side.
Coupling our military strategy to an insistence that the Iraqis meet political benchmarks for reconciliation is also unhelpful. The morass in the government has fueled impatience and confusion while providing no semblance of security to average Iraqis. Leaders are far from arriving at a lasting political settlement. This should not be surprising, since a lasting political solution will not be possible while the military situation remains in constant flux.
The Iraqi government is run by the main coalition partners of the Shiite-dominated United Iraqi Alliance, with Kurds as minority members. The Shiite clerical establishment formed the alliance to make sure its people did not succumb to the same mistake as in 1920: rebelling against the occupying Western force (then the British) and losing what they believed was their inherent right to rule Iraq as the majority. The qualified and reluctant welcome we received from the Shiites since the invasion has to be seen in that historical context. They saw in us something useful for the moment.
Now that moment is passing, as the Shiites have achieved what they believe is rightfully theirs. Their next task is to figure out how best to consolidate the gains, because reconciliation without consolidation risks losing it all. Washington’s insistence that the Iraqis correct the three gravest mistakes we made — de-Baathification, the dismantling of the Iraqi Army and the creation of a loose federalist system of government — places us at cross purposes with the government we have committed to support.
Political reconciliation in Iraq will occur, but not at our insistence or in ways that meet our benchmarks. It will happen on Iraqi terms when the reality on the battlefield is congruent with that in the political sphere. There will be no magnanimous solutions that please every party the way we expect, and there will be winners and losers. The choice we have left is to decide which side we will take. Trying to please every party in the conflict — as we do now — will only ensure we are hated by all in the long run.
At the same time, the most important front in the counterinsurgency, improving basic social and economic conditions, is the one on which we have failed most miserably. Two million Iraqis are in refugee camps in bordering countries. Close to two million more are internally displaced and now fill many urban slums. Cities lack regular electricity, telephone services and sanitation. “Lucky” Iraqis live in gated communities barricaded with concrete blast walls that provide them with a sense of communal claustrophobia rather than any sense of security we would consider normal.
In a lawless environment where men with guns rule the streets, engaging in the banalities of life has become a death-defying act. Four years into our occupation, we have failed on every promise, while we have substituted Baath Party tyranny with a tyranny of Islamist, militia and criminal violence. When the primary preoccupation of average Iraqis is when and how they are likely to be killed, we can hardly feel smug as we hand out care packages. As an Iraqi man told us a few days ago with deep resignation, “We need security, not free food.”
In the end, we need to recognize that our presence may have released Iraqis from the grip of a tyrant, but that it has also robbed them of their self-respect. They will soon realize that the best way to regain dignity is to call us what we are — an army of occupation — and force our withdrawal.
Until that happens, it would be prudent for us to increasingly let Iraqis take center stage in all matters, to come up with a nuanced policy in which we assist them from the margins but let them resolve their differences as they see fit. This suggestion is not meant to be defeatist, but rather to highlight our pursuit of incompatible policies to absurd ends without recognizing the incongruities.
We need not talk about our morale. As committed soldiers, we will see this mission through.
Buddhika Jayamaha is an Army specialist. Wesley D. Smith is a sergeant. Jeremy Roebuck is a sergeant. Omar Mora is a sergeant. Edward Sandmeier is a sergeant. Yance T. Gray is a staff sergeant. Jeremy A. Murphy is a staff sergeant.
The original NYT Editorial