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no heritage tree certificates for bear mountain residents

no heritage tree certificates for bear mountain residents
by janine bandcroft
i'm approaching the end of two weeks living in an old, almost heritage house in an old, tree-lined neighbourhood.  on the wall of this house is a plaque, reminding its inhabitants of their responsibility to protect the heritage designated trees that grace their lawn.  the plaque reads:

"heritage tree certificate -- heritage trees are special.  their designation is based on accurate botanical identification, detailed research and consideration by members of the heritage tree project, committee, and the concurrence of the owner.  their status is reviewed regularly, and they are officially recorded with the appropriate local government.  thank you for caring about and protecting heritage trees."
and there's a quote from william blake:  'a tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way.'

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Calm Before the Conflagration

The Calm Before the Conflagration
by Chris Hedges
The United States is funding and in many cases arming the three ethnic factions in Iraq-the Kurds, the Shiites and the Sunni Arabs. These factions rule over partitioned patches of Iraqi territory and brutally purge rival ethnic groups from their midst. Iraq no longer exists as a unified state.
It is a series of heavily armed fiefdoms run by thugs, gangs, militias, radical Islamists and warlords who are often paid wages of $300 a month by the U.S. military. Iraq is Yugoslavia before the storm. It is a caldron of weapons, lawlessness, hate and criminality that is destined to implode. And the current U.S. policy, born of desperation and defeat, means that when Iraq goes up, the U.S. military will have to scurry like rats for cover.

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Oil and Gas Discoveries Underscore Kosovo

Large Potential Albanian Oil and Gas Discovery Underscores Kosovo's Importance        
by Stephen Lendman
On January 10, Swiss-based Manas Petroleum Corporation broke the news. Gustavson Associates LLC's Resource Evaluation identified large prospects of oil and gas reserves in Albania, close to Kosovo.
They're in areas called blocks A, B, C, D and E, encompassing about 780,000 acres along the northwest to southeast "trending (geological) fold belt of northwestern Albania."

Assigned estimates of the find (so far unproved) are up to 2.987 billion barrels of oil and 3.014 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
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Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Ingmar Lee, Kevin Pina, J9

This Week on GR
by C. L. Cook
On this week's show: Ingmar Lee and the first Battle of Bear Mountain; Kevin Pina and Haiti's stolen democracy; and Janine Bandcroft brings us up to speed with good goings-on in and around Victoria in the coming week. 
Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Monday, 5-6pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, 104.3 cable, and on the internet at: .  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, You can check out the GR blog at:  
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Missteps on McCain Sex Dalliance Story

McCain and the Lobbyist: Missing the Story of the Miss        
by Dave Lindorff
All the attention in the breaking story about John McCain's 2000 relationship with a blonde young telecom lobbyist has been focussed on the question of whether or not they were "doing it."

As George Stephanopoulos claimed on ABC, the importance of the story depends upon whether McCain is shown to have had a "relationship" with the lobbyist, Vicki Iseman.

But really, who cares whether they were shacking up on the campaign trail?

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The Tightening Noose: Gaza under Siege

The Tightening Noose: Gaza under Hamas, Gaza under Siege
by Jen Marlowe
Images from Rafah flicker on my computer screen. Gazans blowing up chunks of the wall that stood between them and Egypt, punching holes in the largest open-air prison in the world and streaming across the border. An incredible refusal to submit.
I learn via email that my friend Khaled Nasrallah rented a truck in order to drive food and medicine from Egypt into the Gaza Strip. He was acting for no humanitarian organization. He's just a resident of Rafah, a Palestinian town which borders Egypt, with a deep need to help and an opportunity to seize.

Rarely does our media offer images so laden with the palpable despair that has become daily life in the Gaza Strip. The situation has bordered on desperate since the outbreak of the Second Intifada in October 2000, when Gazans could no longer work inside Israel and the attacks and incursions of Israel's military, the IDF, became a regular occurrence. Closures on the Strip progressively intensified.

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Old Mindsets Destroy Old Forests

Old Mindsets Destroy Old Forests
by Ken Wu
BC's ancient, old-growth forests are under attack from the ancient, old mindset of Rich Coleman, BC's Minister of Forests and Range. A few weeks ago Coleman told a convention of the BC Truck Loggers Association,"We have enough protected areas and parks" and that he was "frustrated with the people on the coast of British Columbia who keep saying 'quit cutting all the old-growth forest.'"(Vancouver Sun, Jan.17, 2008).

One gets the impression that Coleman, a former police officer with no background in forestry, cares little about his position in charge of forestry in BC. He even said it: "I wonder some days just what I did to the premier to have been made the forests minister", he told the convention.

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Empire and Burlesque

Empire and Burlesque: Permanent Bases Rise While Public Gawks at Geeks
by Chris Floyd     
Thirty years ago, I was in Nashville for a Bob Dylan concert. It was during Dylan's "Vegas" tour: full entourage of back-up singers, horn players, "big band" arrangements, glitzy Elvis-style suits for the star, all of it slickly packaged by Hollywood impresario Jerry Weintraub, who handled Frank Sinatra and Neil Diamond, among others. It was, to put it mildly, a real hoot.
Especially intriguing was the persona that Dylan had adopted for the tour: a chatty Vegas lounge singer, full of patter and stories for the crowd between numbers. (The very next year I saw him in much more ascetic guise, in a black leather jacket with a stripped-down band doing nothing but Christian songs to a half-empty house during a snowstorm in Knoxville. Now there's a man who really knows something about "change.")

But on that Nashville night, Dylan – loquacious, and probably libated – was doing a lot of his old tunes, including the surreal send-up of conventional wisdom, "Ballad of a Thin Man." 
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Hezbollah and the ‘Unknown Knowns’

Hezbollah and the ‘Unknown Knowns’
by Ramzy Baroud
We know well who killed the top Hezbollah commander, Imad Mugniyah on Feb 12th in Damascus.

While in the US media, only journalists like Seymour Hersh will have the nerve to point out the obvious, the Israeli media has not shied away from evidence of the Israeli intelligence’s involvement in this well-calculated assassination.

A major Israeli daily newspaper Maariv shared the views of many others when it concluded that: “Officially, Israel yesterday denied responsibility for the killing. But experts say the brilliant execution of the attack was characteristic of the Mossad.”

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Kicking it Down K Street: Rolling Out the (Oil) Barrel

Kick That Barrel
by Mike Ferner
In a town awash in irony, this particular example of it couldn't have been more striking.

Yesterday, in Washington, D.C., former Marine Corps Sergeant and Iraq War vet, Adam Kokesh, kick-rolled a 55-gallon oil drum lettered "Hands Off Iraqi Oil" across K Street, an avenue that has become synonymous with the power of corporate lobbyists.

Kokesh, former Army National Guard Sergeant Geoff Millard, and former Army Private Marc Train, in the center of a knot of demonstrators, took turns kicking the barrel up 16th Street towards Lafayette Park, adjoining the White House, for a protest sponsored by U.S. Labor Against the War (USLAW), Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW), and Oil Change International.

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Protect America: Spying Lies

More Lies From The Bush Fascists
by Paul Craig Roberts
President George W. Bush and his director of National Intelligence, Mike McConnell, are telling the American people that an unaccountable executive branch is necessary for their protection. 
Without the Protect America Act, Bush and McConnell claim, the executive branch will not be able to spy on terrorists, and we will all be blown up. Terrorists can only be stopped, Bush says, if Bush has the right to spy on everyone without any oversight by courts.

The fight over the Protect America Act has everything to do with our safety, only not in the way that Bush and McConnell assert.  

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