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Democrats Should Treat Petraeus and His Surge as Irrelevant

General Entrap-Us or General Entrapped?
by Ira Chernus
It was supposed to be a "cakewalk." General Petraeus would come to Congress, armed with his favorite charts showing that the "surge" had dramatically reduced violence in Iraq. He would earn universal acclaim for his plan to "pause" troop reductions from July until after the election in November -- the same plan that John McCain counts on to help him win that election.

When it comes to Iraq, though, the Bush administration's cakewalks never seem to turn out as planned. The renewed violence of these last weeks in Iraq, and the prospect of more to come, gives war critics ample ammunition for a counterattack. The Democrats, including Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, may find it irresistible to assault the general, and the President, with every argument they can muster in the hearings this week. However, a recent report suggests they may resist that impulse and treat the impact of the surge as an irrelevant issue.


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Haiti: United Nations 'Peacekeepers' Open Fire on Food Protest

One Protester Killed as Demonstrations Grow in Haiti
by Haiti Information Network
A second day of protests in Haiti's third largest city against growing hunger and high food prices escalated out of control today. More than 3000 demonstrators surrounded a UN compound that houses Uruguayan troops who reportedly opened fire on the crowd.

One protester was confirmed killed and four others wounded by gunfire. On Thursday, over 5000 protesters set up flaming barricades throughout the main downtown area of Les Cayes and paralyzed traffic for several hours according to eyewitnesses.
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Moral Conundrum du Jour: Could the President Have Prisoner's Eyes Poked Out?

Moral Conundrum du Jour: Could the President Have Prisoner's Eyes Poked Out?
by C. L. Cook
Dan Eggen reports today in the Washington Post of former Justice Department lawyer John C. Yoo's 2003 memo regarding the "limits" to be applied to the Bush administration's ministration of "enhanced interrogation techniques" to be applied to its freshly taken prisoners in the 'Global War on Terror.'
 
 
In the eighty-one page memo, Yoo responds to the question posed by a 'nervous Nellie' legislator, to wit:
 
  • "Could the president, if he desired, have a prisoner's eyes poked out?" 
Of course the president could ask, and there are certainly no shortage of sycophants hanging around the Oval Office willing to do the job, but what the question is essentially asking is:
 
  • "Will there be legal repercussions if the congress codifies for the executive powers not seen since the days of the Spanish Inquisition?"  
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Can Bicycles and Cars Co-Exist?

Can Bicycles and Cars Co-Exist?
by Janine Bandcroft
Hi elected officials of victoria; did any of you witness the mark lakeman presentation in fernwood on the weekend (http://cityrepair.org)? 
 
apparently the community centre was packed with over a hundred people.  mark's very inspiring, it's incredible to think of all the amazingly creative things that can be done to make a city more livable. 
 
i hope you took good notes!

also of interest:

From: "angela bischoff" <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. >

Physically Separated Bike Lanes -- Catch this 8 min. online video
http://www.groovygreen.com/groove/?p=2865

It's all about bike lanes. It shows nicely how bikes can be accommodated on heavily trafficked streets. Indeed, such facilities are commonplace throughout Europe, and are becoming more so on west coast North American cities. These cities show a commitment to cyclists' safety.
 
 
 
the truth is in here -  http://relativenewz.ca

 
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Charges Brought Against Farley Mowat Skipper, First Mate

Charges Laid Against Sea Shepherd Vessel
by CBC News
The captain and first officer of a ship being used to protest the annual seal hunt off Canada's east coast are facing charges following a confrontation with a coast guard vessel earlier this week, the federal government announced on Saturday.

The Farley Mowat is owned by the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, an anti-sealing group fronted by controversial environmentalist Paul Watson.
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History's Verdict: Worst President Ever

Worst. President. Ever.
by Scott Horton
America’s historians, it seems, don’t think much of George W. Bush.
 
“It would be difficult to identify a President who, facing major international and domestic crises, has failed in both as clearly as President Bush,” concluded one respondent.
 
“His domestic policies,” another noted, “have had the cumulative effect of shoring up a semi-permanent aristocracy of capital that dwarfs the aristocracy of land against which the founding fathers rebelled; of encouraging a mindless retreat from science and rationalism; and of crippling the nation’s economic base.”
 
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Momin Khawaja: Torturing Canadian Justice

Momin Khawaja: Torturing Canadian Justice
by C. L. Cook
The computer programmer arrested under Canada's newly coined "Terrorism Laws," replete with Homeland Security-like abuses of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms so hard fought for may, rumour has it, get a chance after four years of incarceration to have his legally determined day in court next June.
 
CanWest Global's Ottawa Citizen, not known for its sympathies with Muslims or the concept of fair and balanced journalism, reports Khawaja tossed into solitary confinement due to "medical" reasons coinciding with the announcement his case would finally see the light of open court (sorta maybe). 
 
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19 Reported Arrested in UBC Protest

UBC student protesters face charges
by CBC News
Nineteen people are facing charges including assaulting a police officer and resisting arrest following a demonstration at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver late Friday.
 
Vancouver police and RCMP officers arrested several students when they staged an impromptu rally at UBC.
(CBC) Police said they were called by campus security and arrested 19 people.


A large crowd of UBC students had gathered outside the Student Union Building to demonstrate against the redevelopment of a grassy knoll at the location. A bonfire was lit as the protest neared its end.

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Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Raed Jarrar, Justin Podur, J9 Apr. 7, 2008

This Week on GR
by C. L. Cook
This week, Iraqi ex-patriot, Raed Jarrar and the five things you must know to understand Iraq; Toronto-based writer and analyst, Justin Podur and Ontario's new Injun' Wars; Janine Bandcroft bringing 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: http://cfuv.uvic.ca. You can check out the GR blog at: http://GorillaRadioBlog.blogspot.com
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Getting Fusioned: One Small Goose-Step from the Concentration Camp

Fusion Centers to Data-Mine Suspect Citizens
by Kurt Nimmo
Call it Stasi, the American version, circa 2008. 
  • “The government is rounding up your cell phone numbers, insurance claims, credit reports, financial records, and the names of your associates and relatives and sharing them with law enforcement officials nationwide,” reports John Byrne for Raw Story.
  • “So-called ‘fusion centers’ set up after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks collect, store and analyze commercial and public data on unknown millions of Americans. Little is known about the centers, though they received $254 million from the Department of Homeland Security between 2004 and 2007.”


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NATO Shows Its Fangs in Bucharest

Violent Repression At NATO Summit in Romania
by UK Indymedia
At approximately 12:30pm on 2nd April hundreds of Romanian police violently raided a convergence center in Bucharest, the country’s capital. The convergence space was set up to facilitate an anti-NATO gathering and was legally rented.
 
It is reported that during the raid at least two protesters were hospitalized. Various reports state people are badly beaten while in custody and even while taken to hospital.
 
Numerous people are reported to be seriously injured and some have been refused medical assistance while in custody.


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