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Walter Natynczyk: Canada's New Number One at Defence

CDS Walter Natynczyk: A New Hand on the Helm
by Joe Hueglin
"If you're not prepared to argue your corner eloquently, articulately, occasionally aggressively but always clearly, you can't be a CDS or you can't be a commander," (1) these words from Canada's current Chief of Defence Staff, who possessed the qualities he articulated, are necessary for the position from which he is retiring next month.

Col. Dan Baggio, who served with Chief of Defence Staff designate Lt. General Walter Natynczyk in Baghdad, and until a few weeks ago, was responsible for army media relations at the Pentagon, describes the personal qualities of Canada's new CDS in these words:  "I say this from my heart, I honestly have never heard a harsh word about Walt Natynczyk….  He is not a butt chewer, but a true team player. He had a way of interjecting thoughts so well you thought that they were your own ideas. He was open- minded to guidance from his staff and when he disagreed, he disagreed politely. For me, he is the consummate general officer."

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Run and Hit: B.C. Civil Liberties Association Files Complaint Against Mounties

Civil liberties group files complaint against RCMP after police pursuit
The British Columbia Civil Liberties Association filed a complaint with the Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP today regarding the pursuit of Mr. Randall Dennis Gerard.
Mr. Gerard reportedly stole a 10-ton truck, instigating a protracted police pursuit that ended after road spikes immobilized the vehicle.  Mere seconds after Mr. Gerard exited the truck in an attempt to flee he was hit by an unmarked police vehicle.
Much of the pursuit was captured on video by a local television news helicopter.

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Veterans Deliver Bush Impeachment Petition

Veterans For Peace deliver 23,000 impeachment petitions to
House Judiciary Chair Conyers
by Mike Ferner
Yesterday, a 17-member delegation of Veterans For Peace resented some 23,000 petitions to Congressman John Conyers (D-MI), demanding the impeachment of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.  Conyers, chair of the House Committee on the Judiciary, is the Member of Congress with the authority to call for impeachment hearings.
Also Wednesday, the House of Representatives voted to send the 35 Articles of Impeachment, submitted Monday evening by Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) to theJudiciary Committee for consideration and hearings.

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"Special Weapons" Have Special Effects on Iraqi Babes

'Special Weapons' Have a Fallout on Babies
by Ali al-Fadhily and Dahr Jamail
Babies born in Fallujah are showing illnesses and deformities on a scale never seen before, doctors and residents say. The new cases, and the number of deaths among children, have risen after "special weaponry" was used in the two massive bombing campaigns in Fallujah in 2004.

After denying it at first, the Pentagon admitted in November 2005 that white phosphorous, a restricted incendiary weapon, was used a year earlier in Fallujah. In addition, depleted uranium (DU) munitions, which contain low-level radioactive waste, were used heavily in Fallujah. The Pentagon admits to having used 1,200 tonnes of DU in Iraq thus far.
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Pouring Gasoline on the Fires of Oil Speculation

Oil, Israel, Iran, America and the High Cost of a Single War-Like Remark        
by Dave Lindorff
One remark by a minor Israeli cabinet officer hinting at a possible US or Israeli attack on Iran has sent oil prices up by a record $11/barrel to a record $139 per barrel Friday. That should tell us what would happen if the Bush administration were crazy enough to attack Iran, or to let its vassal state of Israel do it.

Most analysts say an actual attack on Iran would send oil almost immediately to past $300 per barrel—a level that would strangle economies worldwide and send the world into an economic collapse not since the Smoot-Hawley Tariffs kicked off the Great Depression.

The repercussions of that would be staggering.

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Prisoners of Conscience: Amnesty International and Corey Glass

by Amnesty International
Amnesty International believes James Corey Glass to have a genuine conscientious objection to serving as a combatant in the US forces in Iraq, and would consider him to be a prisoner of conscience if imprisoned on his return to the USA.  He is facing deportation from Canada on 12 June.

Corey Glass joined the army in 2002, enlisting in the National Guard where he was assigned to non-combatant duties in the USA. His unit was later ordered to deploy to Iraq, where he served five months of active service in 2005.

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Damning the Whistleblower, Ignoring the Media Enablers

by Media Lens
In April 2006, George Bush bade farewell to his outgoing White House press secretary, Scott McClellan:

"One day he and I are going to be rocking on chairs in Texas talking about the good old days and his time as press secretary."

The rocking chair plans will have been shelved for good after the publication of McClellan's new memoir, 'What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington's Culture of Deception.'

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The Jewish Experience of Israel

The Jewish Experience
By Gilad Atzmon
For more than half a century, those who have been trying to combat the forces that are behind the Israeli paradigm have been identifying Israeli policies and practice with Zionism and Zionist Ideology. I am afraid to say that they were wrong all the way along. Indeed, Zionism’s project dictates the plunder of Palestine in the name of Jewish national aspiration. It is also true to argue that Israel has been rather efficient in translating the Zionist philosophy into a devastating oppressive and murderous practice. Yet, Israelis, or more precisely, the vast majority of Israeli-born secular Jews, are not motivated or fuelled by Zionist ideology. Its spirit or symbols are virtually meaningless to them. As bizarre as it may sound to some, Zionism is either a foreign or just an archaic notion for most Israeli-born secular Jews.

Since the vast majority of Israelis are confused by the notion of Zionism, most forms of criticism that would label itself as anti-Zionist would have hardly any effect on Israel, Israeli politics or on the Israeli people. In other words, in the last sixty years, those who have been using the paradigm of Zionism and its antipode have been preaching to the converted.

A total review of the amalgam formed by Israel, Zionism and Jewishness is now overdue.
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"In the Beginning was the Word," Now What?

The Critical Journey From Apathy to Empathy - "In the Beginning was the Word,"  Now What? 
by Shelley Bluejay Pierce
(part 3)
Most Americans took a deep breath and were grateful when finally, after months and months of incessant political media coverage, we knew who the final Presidential candidates were supposed to be. The onslaught of interviews, political analysts, reports on the Rev. Wright issue and ads declaring that only Hillary Clinton was qualified to pick up the White House phone at 3 AM assaulted us ad nauseum.

I have found myself desiring a new approach to the political campaigns. What would happen if we forced the candidates to take a “temporary” position as President and had them show us, by their actions and not their words, how they would perform as the leader of the USA?
What would happen if we took away their fancy speechwriters, their campaign directors and all their media “spin-doctors” so that all that remained was the human being?

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McClellan: Confessionals and Legal Covers

Scott McClellan: Confessionals and Legal Covers
by Project Humanbeingsfirst
The newsrooms and chatrooms across the United States of America are awash with confessions of Mr. Scott McClellan on President George W. Bush's Iraq “imperial mobilization” under contrived pretexts to prosecute a pre-planned supremely criminal war of aggression and conquest.
The Washington Post of May 28, 2008 on its front page summed the press coverage up:
  • "[I]n a chapter titled “Selling the War,” he alleges that the administration repeatedly shaded the truth and that Bush “managed the crisis in a way that almost guaranteed that the use of force would become the only feasible option.
  • “Over that summer of 2002,” he writes, “top Bush aides had outlined a strategy for carefully orchestrating the coming campaign to aggressively sell the war. . . . In the permanent campaign era, it was all about manipulating sources of public opinion to the president's advantage.”
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One Man's Online Journey through Bush's Alphabet Soup

"E" for Expeditionary: One Man's Online Journey through Bush's Alphabet Soup
by Tom Engelhardt
The Internet teaches its own lessons, often painfully quickly. In April 2005, I followed an urge, as I often did in those days. Our President, who would soon claim to be spending his spare time absorbing meaty books like King Leopold's Ghost, Lincoln: A Life of Purpose and Power, and Mao: The Unknown Story, was then largely known for reading The Pet Goat to schoolchildren while the 9/11 attacks were taking place and for being fond of The Very Hungry Caterpillar. So I took a plunge into humor and wrote a mock children's ABC book that I dubbed "George's Amazing Alphabet Book of the Contemporary World, or Al-Qaedas All Around."
I claimed that the manuscript, produced by George W. himself, had been leaked to my website by "a senior official in one of our intelligence agencies."

Maybe it wasn't Jon-Stewart-worthy, but I posted it anyway as my commentary of the week and thought no more about it until the first angry emails began appearing in the TomDispatch mail box. A number of readers claimed I had been "gulled." I shoulda known! The President could never have written such a document! It had obviously been produced by the CIA! No, the Secret Service! No…

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