Progressive Calendar 08.13.06
From: David Shove (
Date: Sun, 13 Aug 2006 15:10:47 -0700 (PDT)
              P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R     08.13.06

1. KFAI/Indian       8.13 4pm
2. Iran prez/TV      8.13 6pm
3. Vets4Peace        8.13 6pm

4. Arabic classes    8.14 10am
5. Spirit progs      8.14 6:30pm
6. Pentel/Provencher 8.14 7pm
7. Cuba after Castro 8.14 7:30pm
8. Battered women    8.14-15 Worthington MN

9. Democracy Now  - Nader & Tasini on Lieberman & Hillary
10. Paola Manduca - New & unknown deadly weapons used by Israeli forces
11. Stephen Zunes - Why the Dems have failed Lebanon

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From: Chris Spotted Eagle <chris [at]>
Subject: KFAI/Indian 8.13 4pm

KFAI's Indian Uprising, August 13, 2006

interview by Daniel Gautreau (, June 26, 2006.  Ellison
speaks about his involvement with the Peltier trial and the American
Indian Movement, government oppression, human rights, activist resistance
and self-determination issues.  He was a member of the Wounded Knee Legal
Defense/Offense Committee and witnessed the Reign of Terror on the Pine
Ridge Reservation during the 70¹s.  Ellison is a criminal defense lawyer
based in Rapid City, S.D.  He has also worked with the Innocence Project
of Northwestern University.  See

Peltier address: Leonard Peltier #89637-132, USP Lewisburg, PO Box 1000,
Lewisburg, PA 17837.  Peltier's official website is

* * * *
Indian Uprising is a one-half hour Public & Cultural Affairs program for,
by, an about Indigenous people broadcast each Sunday at 4:00 p.m. over
KFAI 90.3 FM Minneapolis and 106.7 FM St. Paul.  Producer and host is
Chris Spotted Eagle.  KFAI Fresh Air Radio is located at 1808 Riverside
Avenue, Minneapolis MN 55454, 612-341-3144.

--------2 of 11--------

From: wamm <wamm [at]>
Subject: Iran prez/TV 8.13 6pm

President Amadinejad of Iran: Interview on "60 minutes"

Sunday, August 13, 6pm. WCCO, Channel 4 TV in your home. You've heard
about him through many corporate media filters, sometimes suspect
translations and the White House and neo-con agenda. Now hear what Iranian
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had to say in an interview with Mike Wallace
in Tehran. The Iranian leader comments on President Bush's foreign policy,
the lack of relations between Iran and the United States, and on
Hezbollah, Lebanon and Iraq.

--------3 of 11--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Vets4Peace 8.13 6pm

Sunday, 8/13, 6 pm, chapter 27 Veterans for Peace, St. Stephens school
basement, 2123 Clinton Ave S, Mpls.  612-821-9141.

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From: Mizna <mizna-announce [at]>
Subject: Arabic classes 8.14 10am

We are extending the registration for our Intensive Arabic II classes
scheduled to begin Monday!  Please register today.

Go here to register:

Arabic Language II
Summer Intensive: Daily August 14-18
Instructor: Antoine Mefleh
Max Class Size: 12
Teenagers - Adult

Arabic Language II is for students with a basic introductory knowledge of
Arabic and designed to continue to develop skills in spoken and written
language. Students will work with the instructor and other classmates in
practicing their knowledge of both spoken and written Arabic through in
class exercises as well as written materials. All materials provided by

About the Instructor
Antoine Mefleh has over twenty years experience teaching Arabic language.
Currently teaching in the Minneapolis Public Schools, he has also taught
at the Berlitz language school in Edina, and St. Maron's Catholic Church
in Minneapolis. Antoine has served as a translator and interpreter for
Hennepin County, the University of Minnesota, U.S. District courts, among
other places. A native of Lebanon, he is the current president of the
Lebanese club of Minnesota and holds degrees from Universities in
Minnesota, Lebanon and France.

About Mizna
Mizna is a forum promoting Arab culture that values diversity in the
community and is committed to giving voice to Arabs through literature,
art, and community events.

Mizna is a forum for Arab American art.  Visit our website at

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From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Spirit progs 8.14 6:30pm

Monday, 8/14, conversation at 6:30, meeting at 7 pm, monthly meeting of
Network of Spiritual Progressives, Plymouth Church, 1900 Nicollet Ave,
Mpls brucelissem [at]

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From: PRO826 [at]
Subject: Pentel/Provencher 8.14 7pm

Hi Greens,
The Pentel/Provencher campaign for Governor/Lt. Governor will meet
regularly at the Wolves Den, 1201 E. Franklin Ave in Minneapolis every
Monday evening from 7-9pm.

Help is needed to stuff envelopes for a mass mailing for fundraising.  If
our campaign is able to fundraise $35,000 by the end of August, we will be
eligible for state funds of $42,000.  Call Tori at 612-824-8492 if you can
help with phone banking or other volunteer opportunities.

--Danene Provencher GPM Lt.Gov candidate

--------7 of 11--------

From: Kelly O'Brien <obrie136 [at]>
Subject: Cuba after Castro 8.14 7:30pm

U of M Panel to Discuss Cuba After Castro
Monday, August 14, 7:30pm
Professors August Nimtz and Enid Logan and others
Institute for Advanced Study, University of Minnesota Nolte Center, 315
Pillsbury Drive SE, east bank campus
Free and open to the general public
FFI: Institute for Advanced Study, 612-626-5054

A mix of academic and community activists will convene on Monday, August
14 at 7:30 p.m. to discuss the future of Cuba in light of Fidel Castro's
questionable health. "Cuba After Castro" will take place at the Nolte
Center on the U of M east bank campus, and is sponsored by the Institute
for Advanced Study. This event is free and open to the public.

Confirmed panelists include U of M political science Professor August
Nimtz, U of M sociology professor Enid Logan, graduate student Melisa
Riviére, and activists Joe Callahan and Terrell Webb.

Panelist bios: August Nimtz, Jr. is a professor of political science at
the University of Minnesota. Professor Nimtz's research interests include
African politics, urban politics, social movements, political development
and Marxism. His publications include Marx and Engels - Their Contribution
to the Democratic Breakthrough, Islam and Politics in East Africa, and
essays on Marxism, and the politics of socialist transformation in the
Caribbean and South Africa. Recently taught classes include "Cuban
Revolution Through the Words of Cuban Revolutionaries" and "Che: In His
Own Words."

Enid Logan is an assistant professor of Sociology at the University of
Minnesota. Her research focuses on conflicts between church and state and
on questions of race and ethnicity in twentieth-century Cuba.

In preparation for her doctoral research Melisa Riviére worked in Havana,
Cuba as a team documentarian in conjunction with the Cuban Institute of
Cinematographic Art and Industry working on a film titled Revolutionary
Cubanas. She is now a MacArthur Ph.D. scholar in the Department of
Anthropology at the University of Minnesota developing research on the
four elements of hip-hop in Cuba and Puerto Rico. As an activist she
continues her solidarity work producing self-financed and donation based
video production for Cuban artists and taking much needed materials to the
Cuban hip hop movement in Havana.

Joe Callahan is a member of Minnesota Cuba Committee and Venceremos
Brigade, a group that sends annual work brigades to Cuba in solidarity
with Cuban socialism. He recently returned from Cuba, where his delegation
met with Ricardo Alarcon, the head of Cuba's National Assembly.

Terrell Webb is an undergraduate student at the University of Minnesota
and was part of the Venceremos Brigade delegation that recently met with

-------8 of 11--------

From: erin [at]
Subject: Battered women 8.14-15 Worthington MN

Monday, August 14 and Tuesday, August 15: Battered Women's Legal Advocacy
Project Cosponsored by the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women and the
Family Law Section of the MN Bar Association.  Held in Worthington: The
2006 Session of New Laws. Day 1: New State and Federal Statutes and Case
Law. Day 2: Enhancing Your Practice and A Team Approach to Meeting the
Legal Needs of Battered Women. Various fees depending on your profession.
More info Dori 612/343-9845.

--------9 of 11--------

Democracy Now: Nader & Tasini on Lieberman & Hillary

AMY GOODMAN:Three-term Senator Joe Lieberman lost Connecticut's Democratic
primary last night in one of the most closely-watched races in the
country. He was defeated by Ned Lamont, a wealthy a telecommunications
executive who has run largely on an anti-Iraq war platform. Lamont won
with 52 percent of the vote to Lieberman's 48%. Voter turnout was close to
40 percent, nearly twice the norm for a primary. The race drew national
attention as a measure of public sentiment over the Iraq war.

Lieberman is only the fourth incumbent senator to lose his party's
nomination since 1980...To run as an independent, Lieberman must file
petitions with 7,500 valid signatures by the end of the day on Wednesday.
Ned Lamont will face Republican Alan Schlesinger in November, a former
state legislator seen as little threat. In his victory speech, Lamont said
he would push for a withdrawal of US forces from Iraq.

We speak with Ralph Nader, he ran for president twice as a third party
candidate - in 2000 and 2004.  He is also the most prominent consumer
advocate in the country.

AMY GOODMAN: Lieberman publicly conceded the Democratic primary Tuesday
night shortly after 11:00 p.m. He promised his supporters to run for a
fourth term as an independent candidate.

       SEN. JOSEPH LIEBERMAN: Tomorrow morning, our campaign will file the
necessary petitions with the Connecticut Secretary of State's office, so
that we can continue this campaign for a new politics of unity and
purpose. If the people of Connecticut are good enough to send me back to
Washington as an independent Democrat, I promise them I will keep fighting
for the same progressive new ideas and for stronger national security.
That's who I am.

AMY GOODMAN: Senator Lieberman, speaking to his supporters Tuesday night.
To run as an independent, he must file petitions with 7,500 valid
signatures by the end of today. Ned Lamont will face Republican Alan
Schlesinger in November, a former state legislator seen as little threat.
In his victory speech, Lamont said he would push for withdrawal of U.S.
troops from Iraq.

       NED LAMONT: We have 132,000 of our bravest troops stuck in the
middle of a bloody civil war in Iraq, and I say it's high time we bring
them home to the hero's welcome!

       CROWD: Bring them home! Bring them home! Bring them home!

       NED LAMONT: It's time we fix George Bush's failed foreign policy.
President Kennedy said it so well. As President Kennedy has said, "We
never negotiate from fear, but we should never be afraid to negotiate." As
your senator, I'm going to make sure we have the strongest army on the
face of this earth, but I also know that America's strongest when we work
in concert with our allies, when we stay true to our values and we deal
with the rest of the world with respect! With respect!

AMY GOODMAN: Ned Lamont, Democratic Senate candidate for Connecticut,
speaking last night, his victory address. As we turn now to Ralph Nader.
He was an independent candidate for president. You have welcomed Joseph
Lieberman to the ranks of third parties, Ralph Nader.

RALPH NADER: Yes. I think that his entry as an independent candidate will
diminish some of the chronic opposition by the Democrats to anybody who
expresses their First Amendment right and runs as an independent or a
third party candidate, like a Green candidate.

AMY GOODMAN: Can you talk about the success of Ned Lamont, talk about this
whole campaign, as you speak to us today from Connecticut?

RALPH NADER: Well, I think it's a testament to word of mouth, Amy. This
whole campaign started without any expose, without any major 60-minute
program, without any ecological disaster that the Democrats have ignored.
It started in small towns around the state, with people talking to one
another in the post office, meeting in living rooms, and that developed an
aura of possibility that caught the attention of Ned Lamont. And, of
course, it helped that he had lot of money to spend and he had some good
campaign managers.

But basically, it's a testament to the power of the word of mouth, which
historically has always been the generic source of progressive movements,
whether it was in the farmer populist days or in the labor union
organizing days. And I think that's a message throughout the country for
progressives. This Lamont victory is certainly going to give a lot of
morale boost to beleaguered progressives in the Democratic Party to try
their hand at challenging incumbents or running for various offices at the
local, state and national level, and I think in New York State, it should
bring more people to rally to Tasini's campaign against Hillary Clinton in
the Senate Democratic primary there. I expect to see some activists and
celebrities, maybe Jesse Jackson, maybe a number of others around the
country now to come to his candidate support.

AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Nader, Jesse Jackson wrote a piece in the Chicago
Sun-Times saying, "Joe Lieberman has been in the Senate for 18 years. He's
a leader of the Democratic Leadership Council, the money wing of the
party. He became the party's vice presidential nominee, even as he
championed the DLC's "triangulating" politics, pushing off of the
Democratic Party base to demonstrate his "independence" by embracing key
elements of the conservative agenda - championing the war in Iraq,
attacking affirmative action, pushing capital gains tax cuts that benefit
only the very wealthy." Can you talk about Senator Lieberman saying, while
he agreed with the Bush administration over the Iraq war, that he has
taken a progressive stance on many other issues?

RALPH NADER: Well, Senator Lieberman would have lost even bigger last
night if Lamont's people actually expanded their criticism of Senator
Lieberman as big business's favorite Democratic senator, not just George
Bush's favorite Democratic senator.

The most aggressive, cruel and insensitive business lobby and the most
powerful in Washington is the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and they have
enthusiastically endorsed Senator Joseph Lieberman, one of only two
Democratic senators they've endorsed out of 46 Democratic senators. And
they have given him the highest cumulative score in their ranking of any
Democratic senator in the Northeast, and for good reason.

He has supported the U.S. Chamber of Commerce positions, not only on
capital gains tax cuts, he supported NAFTA and WTO and CAFTA, which have
depleted jobs here, high-paying jobs here in Connecticut. He has supported
the Chamber's drive to weaken the rights of injured workers and consumers
and defrauded investors from having their full day in court against the
perpetrators of their misery.

He has supported the Exxon-Cheney energy bill, that notorious energy bill
that was signed into law last year that subsidized big oil's profiteering,
weakened environmental standards in a variety of ways and made sure that
there were no further advances in fuel efficiency for motor vehicles. And
here in Connecticut, like everywhere else, they're paying $3.40 - $3.50 a
gallon, and it's going up. So he hasn't done anything on that.

And then, finally, on the labor issue, he's not been outspoken on the
minimum wage like Senator Kennedy. He has not pushed for labor law reform
to give workers a chance to organize. He has not gone after OSHA because
of its weak enforcement of the Occupational Safety and Health laws. 58,000
American workers die every year, according to OSHA, from worker-related
diseases and trauma.

So, in many, many ways, including never challenging the military budget -
that's the Chamber of Commerce position, as well - never really in 18
years advancing universal health insurance. That's a Chamber of Commerce

So, you know, the question I ask Joe Lieberman is, is he going to
repudiate publicly the Chamber of Commerce's endorsement and campaign
support - lots of money from businesses in his campaign - and is he going
to challenge the Chamber of Commerce's drive all over the United States in
hundreds of campaigns, working overtime to undermine his own Democratic
Party and its more progressive candidates? Well, calls to four Lieberman
offices in Washington and Connecticut last week received no answer to the
question: Joe Lieberman, are you going to reject the Chamber of Commerce's
endorsement of you?

So, he goes around, including this morning, saying he's a progressive
Democrat and a progressive independent Democrat.

So I think the struggle is going to be between the progressive Democrats
and the corporate Democrats, who for years have dominated the party and
has had Joe Lieberman as one of their charter members.

AMY GOODMAN: We're talking to Ralph Nader, himself an independent
presidential candidate in 2004. Now, Joseph Lieberman says he'll run
against the Democratic Party's pick for senator of Connecticut. Again, Ned
Lamont has won the Democratic primary in Connecticut, a case that is a
primary that has been closely watched around the country. When we come
back from break, Ralph Nader will stay with us, and we'll be joined by
Jonathan Tasini. He's challenging Hillary Rodham Clinton here in New York
for her Senate seat.


AMY GOODMAN: The Connecticut primary race is seen as a measure of voter
sentiment around the Iraq war, and it's being watched around the country,
perhaps no place more than right here in New York, where Democracy Now!
broadcasts from, with the New York Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton. As
Lamont gained in popularity and clearly looked like he was moving towards
victory, Hillary Rodham Clinton was becoming more talkative about the Iraq
war. Last week, at the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, she
questioned Rumsfeld and said that she thought he should resign. Senator
Lieberman said he had said that two-and-a-half years ago.

Well, we are staying on the line right now from Connecticut with Ralph
Nader, an independent presidential candidate in 2004. Again, Joseph
Lieberman has announced he will run for the Senate seat that he has held
for 18 years as an independent against Ned Lamont and the Republican. And
we're joined in our New York studio by Jonathan Tasini. He is challenging
Hillary Rodham Clinton for her Senate seat. We invited Hillary Rodham
Clinton on today's broadcast. Her office did not respond to our call.

Jonathan Tasini, Ralph Nader just mentioned the issue of money. How do you
compare yourself to Ned Lamont, who just won in Connecticut?

JONATHAN TASINI: Well, I'm not a multimillionaire, that's for sure. Ned
Lamont was, I guess, fortunate enough to have been a cable executive, was
able to spend more than $4 million of his own money. We rely on individual
donors and small donors all across the state and, frankly, all across the
country, and I think that's really the essence of democracy. One of the
things that wasn't pointed out and, I think, you know, Ralph pointed out
before, it's not an inconsequential thing in this victory that Ned Lamont
was able to spend $4 million. That's the way you get on television. That's
the way you can advertise. But we've had an amazing grassroots campaign
that got us on the ballot, so I'm very proud of the kind of campaign we've
been running.

AMY GOODMAN: I wanted to ask you about the coverage of your campaign and
read a quote. The local Time Warner station in New York, NY1, has refused
to set up a debate between you and Senator Clinton, because you haven't
spent enough money in your campaign. We invited NY1 to join us on today's
program, but they declined. The station's public relations manager, Edward
Pachetti, though, sent us this statement outlining their position. He
said, "NY1 News is producing the most ambitious series of political
debates and town hall meetings this election season. As part of the
staging of these events, NY1 established criteria to identify which
candidates would be invited to participate in these events. The criteria
are that a candidate must poll at least five percent (including margin of
error) in a recognized independent poll and would need to have spent
and/or raised $500,000. All candidates who have met these criteria have
been invited to participate." That's the statement of NY1, which is owned
by Time Warner. What are your poll numbers, Jonathan Tasini?

JONATHAN TASINI: Well, we're actually at 13%, which is pretty
extraordinary. That's actually the number that Ned Lamont was at several
months ago, when Joe Lieberman was leading that race by 55 points. And the
reason we're, I think, at that number is we've had an amazing grassroots
campaign. To get on the ballot in New York, which is one of the most
difficult states to get on the ballot, you need 15,000 signatures. We were
able to gather 40,000, which means we have an enormous amount of support
from the grassroots.

And I find that criteria that NY1 is putting out is appalling. It is
anti-democratic. It amounts to essentially censorship. It takes and values
money over the power of people and grassroots. I hope that NY1 changes,
might we actually ask your listeners and your viewers to call NY1. You can
go to our website and get all that information. But
we need to pressure NY1 now to hold a debate between myself and Hillary
Rodham Clinton, because voters deserve to see our positions side-by-side
before they go to the ballot box.

AMY GOODMAN: Now, interestingly, NY1's parent company, which is Time
Warner, has contributed - is one of the top contributors to Hillary Rodham
Clinton's campaign, contributed - what? - $100,000, was number six of the
top ten.

JONATHAN TASINI: Yes, that's correct. It's amazing.

AMY GOODMAN: Newsday today also, in an editorial comment, says that NY1
should reconsider its criteria. You've been dealing with this for years,
Ralph Nader. Your response.

RALPH NADER: I think the Time Warner Corporation should be in trouble
under the 1934 Communications Act. I know that Time Warner owns
over-the-air radio and TV stations, and this - NY1 is a cable, Amy. Is it
a cable station?

AMY GOODMAN: Yes, NY1 is cable in New York.

RALPH NADER: So, overall, this company's responsible, under the 1934
Communications Act, "to perform in the public interest, necessity and
convenience." Those are the words in the act. And for this corporation,
whose executives are giving to Hillary Rodham Clinton money, to have a
means test to say that Jonathan Tasini has to raise $500,000 - do you know
that you have to raise only one-third of that running for president in
order to qualify for matching funds under the federal law? And so, they
put the bar very high. They should have no right as a corporation, which
is not a human being, not a person, to determine that kind of access. The
only criteria that's justifiable is whether the candidate is on the
ballot. If the candidate is a ballot-qualified candidate, that should
bring that person into any of the debates.

JONATHAN TASINI: I completely agree with Ralph and, in fact, the League of
Women Voters has a debate scheduled on September 6, which I've agreed to
attend and Hillary Clinton has not, and the criteria they're using is
exactly what Ralph says, which is getting on the ballot, which, in fact,
in New York State is a very difficult thing. And I want to say, I don't
even think the polling number is right the way to go. Their criteria at
NY1 is 5%. I'm at 13%. But If somebody came to the debate and was running
as another candidate in this race, I would stand up for their right, if
they were legally on the ballot, to be in this debate, whether they had 5%
or not, whether they had raised $500,000, because democracy is about the
ability to go out there, talk to people, get them to sign your petitions.
It's an amazing grassroots effort.

And I think, frankly, that the Clinton campaign does not want to debate
us. Putting aside the NY1 issue just for a moment, I call on Hillary
Clinton to agree to the set of debates that we've proposed in a letter
just a couple of weeks ago. I'm happy to debate her on this program,
anywhere that she would agree to do that. I think we should debate
multiple times on the Iraq war, on the Middle East, on her relationships
to corporate power, her support for free trade agreements like NAFTA. The
voters deserve to know where she stands. She cannot run and hide from the
voters in New York.

AMY GOODMAN: She called for Rumsfeld's resignation this past week.

JONATHAN TASINI: Yes, but that's like - you know, that's like hitting a
piñata. That was easy. I hope the debate in this election comes down to
the following: whether the war was run ineffectively, inefficiently, which
is her argument, and whether this war should have happened or not, because
I believe the voters will then support my position, which is this war was
illegal and immoral, we should withdraw immediately - not Hillary
Clinton's position, which is essentially, well, we should have had 500,000
troops there or bombed Iraq even harder. That's her argument, that the
Bush administration has bungled this war. I hope we get to debate the
differences on that issue.

AMY GOODMAN: Have you seen her changing as a result of the Connecticut

JONATHAN TASINI: Well, there's no question that she took that - the
attempt - she challenged Rumsfeld, because of the race in Connecticut. And
let's remember, Bill Clinton crossed the border to go campaign for Joe
Lieberman. Remember, Joe Lieberman was the man who came to the Senate
floor and condemned Bill Clinton for his affair with Monica Lewinsky.
There is no love lost between them. The only reason that Bill Clinton
crossed this border to go to Connecticut was this race here in New York,
because they worry that I am where the voters are, and I know that from
the polling. I know that from talking to people on the streets, that the
majority of voters support my position, not Hillary Clinton's.

AMY GOODMAN: And, of course, beyond your position here in New York, if
Hillary Rodham Clinton has her eye on the presidency, in terms of the
whole country, and the sentiment around it.

RALPH NADER: Also, I might add, Amy, there needs to be a debate on the war
in Iraq and on the war in Lebanon after the primary, and I'm sure that NY1
and the Democratic politicos are going to try to freeze out third party
antiwar candidates like Howie Hawkins of the Green Party from Syracuse,
who is running against Hillary Rodham Clinton for the U.S. Senate, a very
accomplished civic organizer, a Teamster, a writer, and just the kind of
person who can present, after the primary's over, a continuation of this
public debate. So I really hope the people in New York State will rise up
for a vigorous debate and not give Hillary Rodham Clinton a free ride.

AMY GOODMAN: Jonathan Tasini, what about the war in Lebanon? What is your
view right now on the conflict?

JONATHAN TASINI: Well, just a little background for your viewers. My
father was born in what was then Palestine, fought in the Israeli
underground. A cousin of mine was killed in the 1973 War. My
step-grandfather was murdered by a Palestinian who was taking revenge for
the massacre that Baruch Goldstein conducted against the Muslim
worshippers that very day. So I felt the cost of war in a very personal
way. And I have been very saddened by Israel's response. I believe
Hezbollah did break the law, international law, and at the same time, I
think that the Israeli response was, particularly the bombing campaign in
Beirut, was disproportionate.

I often hearken back, startlingly enough, to Ariel Sharon, who, when the
Israeli businessman was kidnapped some time ago, rather than conduct a
war, he actually engaged in negotiations and freed prisoners that Israel
had kept, and there was no war between Hezbollah and Israel at the time.
Why could we not negotiate? And the United States was the only country
that did everything possible to prevent a ceasefire. Condoleezza Rice was
sent by George Bush to Rome to scuttle that ceasefire, and Hillary Rodham
Clinton stopped just short of saying, "Let the bombs fall." She abrogated
her responsibility as a leading figure in the Democratic Party and, I
believe, fanned the flames of violence in the Middle East.

AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Nader, you are a Lebanese American.

RALPH NADER: Well, first I want to say, I've rarely seen a more
compassionate and brave candidate for a public office in this country on
this issue than Jonathan Tasini, and he needs to be not only commended,
but supported for this. He represents the best of the peace movement in
our country. Given the background that he's just described, he could very
easily have become a hawk.

Second, I think this is a massive high-tech terror war by the Israeli
government against an innocent Lebanese people and their livelihood and
infrastructure. Hezbollah was engaged in a number of skirmishes with the
Israeli Army over the last six years. Israel, of course, violated the
Lebanese border far more, airily and navally and on land, than Hezbollah
did. But that lethal skirmish was turned into a catastrophic war by the
Israeli government against the innocent, defenseless people of Lebanon, in
three stages of state terrorism.

First, direct strikes against residential areas, against wheat silos,
against highways, water systems, power stations, hospitals, schools, the
vehicles fleeing with refugees. We've seen it all on TV.

The second stage of Israeli state terrorism is deliberately impeding the
rescue of the injured people, bombing, for example, ambulances on their
way to the hospital, cutting off roads, preventing medical supplies and
hospital workers from reaching the terrified injured in the remnants of
the bleeding families. We saw Doctors Without Borders trying to manually
convey across the Litani River, after the last bridge was destroyed,
medical supplies.

And the third stage of Israeli state terrorism is direct strikes against
rescue workers or injured people; for example, hitting at hospitals,
ambulances, medical supplies, etc. You know, these are not just impeding
rescue by blockading the whole country, which has now only six days left
of fuel, including hospitals, but also going after rescue operations.

So I would recommend, in addition to a ceasefire, in addition to
withdrawal of combatants, in addition to an international peace force, I
would recommend an immediate international rescue operation, because
thousands of people are going to die and get sick and get injured from the
consequences of what has already been done in Lebanon in the blockade of
any entry of supplies.

It's hard to find a situation anywhere in the world where, after the
devastation by one all-powerful party to a conflict of innocent civilians
and their entire public services throughout a defenseless country, that
this powerful agent anywhere in the world would be allowed to block relief
efforts. And that's what has to be done right now: relief efforts. It's
not enough that Israel has created an environmental disaster by blowing up
oil depots that have contaminated the entire coast of Lebanon, but they
also blew up 400 little fishing boats in a port north of Beirut and
destroyed the livelihood of these people.

So, we really have to ask ourselves, in settling the core problem between
the Palestinians and the Israelis - and that is what the core problem is;
if that was settled, you wouldn't hear about Hezbollah - who's the most
powerful of the adversaries? Who is the occupier and the colonizer of
whose land? And who has the all-out support of the most powerful country
in the world, the U.S. government? And we know the answers to that. It's
Israel, and it's Israel who should have responded in June, as Gideon Levy
pointed out and others in Haaretz, to the agreement between Hamas and
Fatah, the Palestinian arm, who agreed to seek a permanent settlement with
the Israeli government, in terms of a two-state solution.

AMY GOODMAN: We're going to go to Israel in a minute. We're going to hear
from people who are refusing to serve in the Israeli military. But
Jonathan Tasini, ten seconds, last comment.

JONATHAN TASINI: Well, there's an enormous amount of violence in the
region. We need a ceasefire. There have been civilian casualties on all
sides, and it's horrifying. It must stop. I'm going to continue arguing
the points in this campaign. I urge people to help us and support our
campaign and go to our website

AMY GOODMAN: And we will link at Jonathan Tasini, thank
you for joining us, a New York Senatorial candidate in the Democratic
primary. He is taking on Hillary Rodham Clinton. Ralph Nader, former
independent presidential candidate, speaking to us from Connecticut.

--------10 of 11--------

New and unknown deadly weapons used by Israeli forces
'direct energy' weapons, chemical and/or biological agents, in a macabre
experiment of future warfare
by Professor Paola Manduca
The Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG) - Aug 7, 2006

By now there are countless reports, from hospitals, witnesses, armament
experts and journalists that strongly suggest that in the present
offensive of Israeli forces against Lebanon and Gaza 'new weapons' are
being used.

New and strange symptoms are reported amongst the wounded and the dead.

Bodies with dead tissues and no apparent wounds; 'shrunken' corpses;
civilians with heavy damage to lower limbs that require amputation, which
is nevertheless followed by unstoppable necrosis and death; descriptions
of extensive internal wounds with no trace of shrapnel, corpses blackened
but not burnt, and others heavily wounded that did not bleed.

Many of these descriptions suggest the possibility that the new weapons
used include 'direct energy' weapons, and chemical and/or biological
agents, in a sort of macabre experiment of future warfare, where there is
no respect for anything: International rules (from the Geneva Convention
to the treaties on biological and chemical weapons), refugees, hospitals
and the Red Cross, not to mention the people, their future, their
children, the environment, which is poisoned through dissemination of
Depleted Uranium and toxic substances released after oil and chemical
depots are bombed.

Right now, the Lebanese and Palestinian people have many urgent and
impellent problems, yet many people believe that these episodes cannot and
must not pass ignored. In fact several appeals have been launched to
scientists and experts with a view to investigating the issue.

With the intent of responding to such appeals, we have set up a team to
investigate the testimonies, the images, and possibly the material
evidence that delegations and NGOs will be able to bring from the affected
areas. We want to offer support to the health institutions of Lebanon and
Palestine, which ask constantly for help and external verification and
monitoring, and we are examining all available materials in order to
formulate hypotheses which can be verified or disproved.

We ask for the active participation of our (Italian) scientific
institutions, and, following the request from medical personnel in the
conflict area, we are requesting that the UN set up an international
independent verification and investigation committee, with a view to
facilitating entry into the conflict zone, as well as collecting material
and testimonies directly in the field, and undertaking inquries and
verifications concerning the various claims regarding these new kinds of
weapons of mass destruction being used by Israeli forces in Lebanon.  We
request that such investigating teams be set up immediately, and that
procedures be defined and implemented with a view to supporting future
investigations. Of particular concern is the issue of how to collect and
store samples from the different theatres, with a view to preserving
important information regarding the various impacts of these weapons.

We ask that the international committee have access to all sources of
information, that it be fully operational, while abiding by relevant
investigative procedures, including cross-checking of information between
different laboratories. The international committee is to report to the
competent authorities, including the Human Rights tribunals and
international courts, if appropriate..

As people and as scientists, we are offering our time and expertise in
order to reach an understanding of the underlying facts, in the belief
that a perspective of justice, equity and peace among people can be
reached only with the respect of the rules defined up to now within the
international community of nations. The issue pertains to the behavior of
the parties in an armed conflict.

We ask that the respect of these rules be verified in the context of the
present conflict.

We invite scientists to contribute to this effort by offering their
specific competences. In particular we seek collaboration of toxicology
experts, pharmacologists, anatomy pathologists, doctors with an expertise
in trauma and burns, chemists.

They can reach the working group at the E-mail address:
nuovearmi [at]
Paola Manduca, Professor of.Genetics, University of Genova, Italy

[Imagine the outrage in ruling circles in America and Israel if one
suggested testing these new weapons on ruling class husbands, wives,
sons and daughters. Ruling class bodies with dead tissues and no apparent
wounds; 'shrunken' corpses; heavy damage to lower limbs that require
amputation, which is nevertheless followed by unstoppable necrosis and
death; extensive internal wounds with no trace of shrapnel, corpses
blackened but not burnt, and others heavily wounded that did not bleed.
Imagine them lying around this way at the country club, at corporate
headquarters, on yachts and in mansions.

If we don't like even thinking of "equal outcome" justice, then we must
end ruling class society by a drastic overhaul; until we do, they will
kill at will.  Why is pacifism one-way? We've not supposed to do violence
to them, but we put up with and vote for two corporate parties that
support violence to all but the rich. See next article.  -ed]

--------11 of 11--------

Why the Dems Have Failed Lebanon
by Stephen Zunes
Foreign Policy in Focus - Aug 9, 2006

The Bush administration's unconditional support for Israel's attacks on
Lebanon is emblematic of the profound tragedy of U.S. policy in the region
over the past five years. The administration has relied largely on force
rather than diplomacy. It has shown a willingness to violate international
legal norms, a callousness regarding massive civilian casualties, a
dismissive attitude toward our closest allies whose security interests we
share, and blatant double standards on UN Security Council resolutions,
non-proliferation issues, and human rights. A broad consensus of moderate
Arabs, Middle East scholars, independent security analysts, European
leaders, and others have recognized how - even putting important moral and
legal issues aside - such policies have been a disaster for the national
security interests of the United States and other Western nations. These
policies have only further radicalized the region and increased support
for Hezbollah and other extremists and supporters of terrorism.

The Democratic Party could seize upon these tragic miscalculations by the
Bush administration to enhance its political standing and help steer
America's foreign policy in a more rational and ethical direction.
Instead, the Democrats have once again overwhelmingly thrown their support
behind the president and his right-wing counterpart, Israeli Prime
Minister Ehud Olmert.

                  Supporting the Israeli Offensive

Soon after Israel began its offensive on July 12, House Republican leader
John Boehner, along with House International Relations Committee Chairman
Henry Hyde, introduced a resolution unconditionally supporting Israel's
military actions and commending President Bush for fully supporting the
Israeli assault. Despite reports by Amnesty International, Human Rights
Watch, and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights that Israel (and, to
a lesser extent, Hezbollah) were committing war crimes in attacking
civilians, the resolution praised Israel for its longstanding commitment
to minimize civilian loss and even welcomed Israel's continued efforts to
prevent civilian casualties. The resolution also claimed that Israel's
actions were in accordance with international law, though they flew in the
face of longstanding, universally recognized legal standards regarding the
use of force and the treatment of non-combatants in wartime.

Despite such a brazen attack against the credibility of reputable human
rights groups and the UN Charter that limits military action to legitimate
self defense, Rep. Tom Lantos signed on as a full co-sponsor. Lantos is
the ranking Democrat on the International Relations Committee and likely
to chair the committee should the Democrats win back the majority in
November. Even more alarmingly, all but fifteen of the 201 Democrats in
the House of Representatives voted in favor or the resolution.

In supporting the Republican-authored resolution, Pennsylvania Democrat
Allyson Schwartz invoked the September 11 tragedy and insisted that the
United States had a moral obligation to stand by Israel on the side of
democracy and freedom versus terror and radicalism since to do otherwise
would undermine our national security. Democratic Congressman Robert
Wexler of Florida praised Israel's efforts to eradicate this global threat
and insisted that Syria and Iran should be held responsible for the
violence. Even though the Hezbollah rocket attacks on Israel began only
after Israel started bombing civilian areas of Lebanon, Democratic
Congressman Rush Holt of New Jersey insisted that the killings of these
Israeli civilians took place despite every attempt by the Israeli
government to demonstrate their genuine commitment to peace.

One reason for such broad Democratic support for the resolution may stem
from the fact that the Arms Control Export Act forbids arms transfers to
countries that use American weapons for non-defensive purposes, such as
attacking civilians. Thus, in order to protect the profits of politically
influential American arms merchants, the Democrats joined with Republicans
in supporting language in the resolution claiming that Israel's actions
were legitimate self-defense.

The Senate endorsed by a voice vote a similar resolution unconditionally
supporting Israel's military offensive. Introduced by Republican Senate
leader Bill Frist, the resolution was co-sponsored by Senate Democratic
leader Harry Reid and the majority of Senate Democrats, including Barack
Obama and Dick Durbin of Illinois, Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein of
California, Russell Feingold of Wisconsin, Edward Kennedy and John Kerry
of Massachusetts, Daniel Akaka of Hawaii, Tom Harkin of Iowa, Patty Murray
and Maria Cantwell of Washington, Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow of
Michigan, Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez of New Jersey, and Barbara
Mikulski and Paul Sarbanes of Maryland, among others.

The Democrats' support for the Bush administration's defiance of the
international community was most clearly articulated by Democratic Senator
Charles Schumer of New York, another co-sponsor of the resolution, who
claimed that the European community and others who called on Israel to
show restraint believed that Israel should not be given the ability to
defend herself and that those who advocated any other course than that
pursued by the Bush administration and Israeli government would constitute
an appeasement of Hezbollah.

                        Hillary Takes the Lead

Yet another Democratic co-sponsor of the Senate resolution was Hillary
Rodham Clinton, a front-runner for the Democratic Party presidential
nomination in 2008. Speaking at a rally in New York City in support of the
Israeli attacks against Lebanon, she praised Israel's efforts to send a
message to Hamas, Hezbollah, to the Syrians [and] to the Iranians,
because, in her words, they oppose the United States and Israel's
commitment to life and freedom.

Clinton's statements were challenged by her opponent in the Democratic
primary for Senate, union activist Jonathan Tasini, who pointed out that
Israel has committed acts that violate international standards and the
Geneva Conventions, citing reports by a number of reputable human rights
organizations, including the Israeli group B'Tselem. Clinton's
spokesperson dismissed Tasini's concerns about Israeli violations of
international humanitarian law as beyond the pale.

Tasini, a former Israeli citizen who has lost close relatives in the
Arab-Israeli wars and Palestinian terrorism and whose father fought and
was wounded in the Israeli war of independence, correctly observed that
Hezbollah's actions violate international law as well. He argued that his
criticism of Israel's policy of collective punishment and attacks on
civilians comes from the perspective of being a friend of Israel, citing
the Jewish tradition of Tikkun Olam, or repairing the world. Facing
vicious attacks from Clinton supporters for his liberal views, Tasini has
called for a debate with his opponent to demonstrate how her unconditional
U.S. support for Israeli militarism actually threatens Israel's security
interests. The Anglo-Saxon Protestant Clinton, who - like the vast
majority of the overwhelmingly WASP Democratic Party leadership - has
never lost a relative to the region's violence, has thus far refused the

                       Democrats Attack Maliki

The perversity of the Democrats' Middle East policies can be illustrated
in their reaction to the visit to Washington in July by Iraqi Prime
Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Maliki's government, primarily through its
Interior ministry, has been responsible for the ethnic cleansing of
thousands of Sunni Arabs in Baghdad and elsewhere and the massacre of
hundreds more. Amnesty International and other reputable human rights
groups have documented gross and systematic human rights violations by
Maliki's government, including torture and ill treatment, arbitrary
detention without charge or trial, and the excessive use of force
resulting in countless civilian deaths.

With so much blood on Maliki's hands, one would think that at least some
Democrats would have chosen to protest or even boycott his speech before a
joint session of Congress on July 26. Yet few concerns were aired.
However, once the Iraqi prime minister criticized Israel's attacks on
Lebanon, only then did the Democratic leadership decide to speak out
against the Iraqi prime minister.

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi stated that unless the Iraqi Prime
Minister disavows his critical comments of Israel it is inappropriate to
honor him with a joint meeting of Congress. Given that the leaders of
America's most important allies have also made critical comments about
Israel's offensive, very few foreign dignitaries will be given such an
honor in the coming years if the minority leader's recommendations are

The Democrats' offensive against Maliki may have been part of a broader
campaign to oppose discontent within their own ranks regarding criticism
of the Israeli offensive. For example, Democratic Congressman Rahm Emanuel
of Illinois declared that the Iraqi prime minister's comments inflicted
hate upon another democracy, linking criticism of a particular Israeli
policy with hate against Israel (an important warning, given that he heads
the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.)

Democratic Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky of Pennsylvania claimed that
Maliki, in criticizing Israel's attacks against civilian targets in
Lebanon, had condemned Israel's right to defend itself against terrorism,
an apparent effort to equate criticisms of Israeli war crimes with denying
Israel's legitimate right to self-defense. Senator Schumer claimed that
Maliki's criticisms of the Israeli destruction of Lebanon's infrastructure
and the large-scale killings of Lebanese civilians raised questions as to
which side is he on in the war on terror, thereby insinuating that those
who oppose Israeli attacks against civilians are supporters of al-Qaida.
Democratic Party chairman Howard Dean, in a speech on July 26, went so far
as to insist that Maliki was an anti-Semite, perhaps as a warning to party
liberals that anyone who dared criticize any policy of America's top
Middle Eastern ally would be subjected to similar slander.

Ironically, 2004 Democratic Presidential nominee John Kerry defended his
support for the Iraq war by claiming that sacrificing American lives to
defend the Iraqi government was worthwhile in part because it's important
for Israel. In other words, the Democrats want it both ways: condemning
the Iraqi government for being anti-Israel while justifying the ongoing
U.S. war in Iraq because the Iraqi government is pro-Israel.

                 Behind the Democrats' Hawkish Stance

The decision by Democratic members of Congress to take such hard-line
positions against international law and human rights does not stem from
the fear that it would jeopardize their re-election. Public opinion polls
show that a sizable majority of Americans believe U.S. foreign policy
should support these principles. More specifically, only a minority of
Americans, according to a recent New York Times poll, support President
Bush's handling of the situation or agree that the United States should
give unconditional support to Israel in its war on Lebanon.

Nor is it a matter of Democratic lawmakers somehow being forced against
their will to back Bush's policy by Jewish voters and campaign
contributors. In reality, Jewish public opinion is divided over the wisdom
and morality of the Israeli attacks on Lebanon. More significantly, the
vast majority of Democrats who supported the resolution came from very
safe districts where a reduction in campaign contributions would not have
had a negative impact on their re-election in any case.

Perhaps more important than pressure from right-wing political action
committees allied with the Israeli government to support the Bush
administration's backing of the Israeli attacks has been the absence of
pressure from the liberal groups who oppose such policies.

For example, MoveOn not only continues to work for the re-election of many
prominent Democratic hawks who backed Boehmer's resolution, but has not
even sent out an alert to its supporters to contact their representatives
and senators to protest their defense of Israeli attacks or to support
proposed House resolutions calling for a cease-fire. And while Peace
Action, the country's largest peace group, has called on its supporters to
encourage their elected officials to back a cease-fire, its political
action committee turned back efforts to rescind endorsements of incumbents
who supported the House resolution.

This reticence contrasts with other foreign policy issues related to
international law and human rights from U.S. intervention in Central
America during the 1980s to Iraq today. In these other cases, liberal
groups made it a priority to hold their elected representatives in
Washington accountable for backing administration policy. However, it
appears that if the victims of such policies are Lebanese or Palestinian
civilians, there arewith some notable exceptionsfew organized protests
heard on Capitol Hill. With so little pressure from progressive groups,
elected representatives have little inclination to withdraw support for
administration policy toward Israel and its neighbors.

In reality, the Democrats' support for Israeli attacks against Lebanon is
quite consistent with their support for the U.S. invasion of Iraq. In both
cases, Democrats rushed to the defense of right-wing governments that have
run roughshod over international legal norms, that have gone well beyond
their legitimate right to self-defense, and that have taken an incredible
toll in innocent civilian lives.

For example, when President Bush ordered the invasion of Iraq in 2003 in
violation of the UN Charter, only eleven House Democrats voted against a
resolution that reliance by the United States on further diplomatic and
other peaceful means alone could not adequately protect the national
security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq.
If such an overwhelming majority of Democrats believe that the United
States invading a country disarmed of its offensive military capabilities,
overthrowing its government, and indefinitely occupying its territory is
an act of self-defense, it would be quite easy for them to believe the
same about Israel's assault against its northern neighbor. Indeed, to this
day, despite not finding any weapons of mass destruction, an overwhelming
majority of Democrats in both houses of Congress continue to support
funding the war despite polls that show a growing majority of Americans
now oppose it.

In other words, the Democratic Party's support for Israel's attacks on
Lebanon is quite consistent with its disdain for international law and
human rights elsewhere and its defiance of public opinion on other foreign
policy issues. It is not, therefore, something that can simply be blamed
on the Zionist lobby. Rather, it indicates that the Democrats' worldview
is essentially the same as that of the Republicans.

This ideological congruence calls into question whether the increasingly
likely prospect of the Democrats regaining a majority in Congress in
November will make any real difference on the foreign policy front. Many
supporters of human rights and international law are debating whether to
continue to support the Democratic Party or instead support the Green
Party or other minor parties that embrace such principles.

The tragic misdirection in U.S. foreign policy in recent years cannot be
blamed on the Bush administration alone.

[Stephen Zunes is Middle East editor for Foreign Policy in Focus. He is a
professor of Politics at the University of San Francisco and the author of
Tinderbox: U.S. Middle East Policy and the Roots of Terrorism (Common
Courage Press, 2003).]


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