Albion Monitor Issue 148 JULY/ AUGUST 2006
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In a column titled, "The Guns of August," a reference to a book about the diplomatic follies and indecisive battles that launched Europe into a devastating world war in 1914, former UN Ambassador Richard Holbrooke noted Turkey is threatening to invade northern Iraq; the world's largest anti-Israel demonstrations are taking place in downtown Baghdad; Syria may yet be pulled into the Lebanon war; Afghanistan is under growing threat from a resurgent Taliban; and India is threatening about punitive action against Pakistan for its alleged involvement in the recent train bombings in Bombay. Particularly alarming to Holbrooke, as to a steadily growing number of Republican realists and other members of the traditional U.S. foreign policy elite, is the apparent complacency of the Bush administration in the face of these events

Lebanese authorities buried 32 unclaimed bodies in a mass grave outside Tyre on July 29, 2006. Killed by the Israeli bombings of southern Lebanon, the victim's bodies had lain unrecovered for up to ten days in the burned-out shells of cars or scattered in the devastated villages near Tyre.   Photo: © Hugh Macleod/IRIN


With Mideast tensions at the highest levels in 24 years, Israeli jets pounded central Beirut, sending thousands of refugees streaming to Syria. But Lebanon's bridges and roads were also under attack, causing more casualties and terror. Nebham Razaq Hamed, a 22-year-old Lebanese student, said the situation in southern Beirut was horrific. "The bombing at night was continuous and has continued today, they are using warplanes and sometimes artillery," he told IPS at the border. "Everybody is in panic because of the haphazard bombing which is killing so many civilians now. The Israelis are terrorising the people intentionally by not discriminating between fighters and civilians."

Israel has also destroyed the infrastructure in Gaza, bombing the power plant that supplies half the region as Israeli forces occupied Palestinian territory for the first time since last autumn. Meanwhile, U.S.-backed Arab leaders, including Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak who, at Israel's behest, has tried to quietly mediate between the two sides, are reportedly warning of growing popular outrage -- and support for Hamas


Israeli Blockade Shuts Down Lebanon Economy FREE!

Israelis Ask: What Price Invading Lebanon?
Homebound Refugees Find Death In S Lebanon FREE!

Lebanon's Christians Also Targets For Israeli Bombs
About Half Of Hezbollah Civilian Rocket Victims Are Arab Israelis FREE!

Israeli Bombing Stalls Cleanup of Massive Oil Spill

Israel Tells Sidon, City Of 250K, To Expect Bombing

Israel's Lebanon, America's Iraq

Bombs Giving Hezbollah Legitimacy In Muslim World
Hezbollah Gains Support In Besieged Mountains Of Lebanon FREE!

The Humanitarian 48-Hour Hiatus That Wasn't

Hopes For Arab Transformation Fading As Israeli Assault Continues

Human Rights Watch Accuses Israel of War Crimes
Lebanon Cedars Biosphere Reserve At Risk Of Destruction From Israel BombingFREE!

No Hezbollah Rockets Fired From Qana, Say Red Cross Workers, Civilians
Qana Massacre Provokes Crowd Attack on UN Building FREE!

"If You Haven't Left, You're Hezbollah"

UN Under Heavy Fire For Inaction on Lebanon

Israeli Airstrikes Cause Massive Lebanon Oil Spill

Cheering Israel, Cheering Lebanon's Destruction

Crisis Mounts As 1 In 4 Lebanese Becomes Refugee

Sunni-Shiite Split Fades As Israel Presses War In Lebanon

Lebanon's Fractured Gov't Too Weak To Deal With Israel Or Hezbollah

Condi Offers Lebanon Little Help For Massive Israeli Destruction

Beirut Bombings Hit Children Hardest

Key Beirut Bridges, Roads Destroyed

Lebanon Assault Reason To Be Ashamed Of Israel - And Ourselves

Hezbollah Could Emerge From Conflict As Potent Symbol In Muslim World

UN Paralyzed Over Israeli Attacks on Lebanon

Lebanon's Suffering Not Reported In U.S. Media

Lebanese Refugees Crowd Damascus

Israel, U.S. Seek To Blur Line Between Lebanon Crisis And Iran Crisis

Israel Must Face Up To Hezbollah As A Political Force

World Powers Stand Idle As Israel Attacks Lebanon

Israel Preparing For Iran Showdown by Attacking Lebanon
Tens Of Thousands Flee Israeli Airstrikes On Lebanon FREE!

G8 Condemns Mideast Violence, But Does No More
Gulf States Send Million$ In Assistance To Lebanon FREE!

Chaos, Terror As Lebanese Flee Israeli Bombers
Gaza in the Vise FREE!

Bush Silence On Israel's Gaza Offensive Speaks Volumes

Israel, Palestine Crisis Forms Over Hostage

Ken Lay, Enron, and 9/11
404 reports
A Quran blows in the wind amid the wreckage of houses in Nabatiyeh, August 18, 2006. PHOTO: © Hugh Macleod/IRIN
Beirut following the July 22 Israeli bombings   PHOTO: © FARS News Agency/Majid Saeedi
Israeli air strikes on an electricity plant have created an oil spill that has now polluted much of Lebanon's coastline and destroyed its vital fishing industry   PHOTO: Lebanon Environmental Minstry
19 Palestinians, including a married couple and their seven children, were killed in the July 12 Israeli bombing in the southern part of the Gaza Strip
Mexico governing party's Felipe Calderon and left-leaning challenger Lopez Obrador


Mexico's official vote count unfolded more like a suspense novel than an electoral process. Commentators and common citizens sat poised at television or computer screens as Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's two-and-a-half point lead gradually dwindled until -- at four in the morning -- the conservative candidate, Felipe Calderon, pulled ahead. The final tally showed an unbelievably thin margin of just over half a percentage point.

The operative word here is "unbelievable." Obrador's Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD) and large parts of the population have publicly questioned the results. In a morning press conference, Lopez Obrador announced he will challenge the vote count in the Electoral Tribunal. "We cannot accept these results," he stated, citing "numerous irregularities -- to put it mildly."

This is the scenario that everyone hoped to avoid. A close race opens up doubts about the legitimacy of the winner and leads to protests that the public will has been violated. Under optimal circumstances, where the rule of law reigns and public confidence is high, a single vote lead should be sufficient to declare a winner in a one-round, majority vote like Mexico's. But neither of those conditions characterizes Mexico today


Mexico Election Court Rules In Favor Of Conservative Calderon

Obrador Supporters Vow Ongoing Protests Until Full Recount

Up to 2 Million March For Obrador In Mexico City

Obrador Urges Peaceful Protests For Full Recount

Mexico Passes On Latin America's Social Revolution

Calderon Begins Setting Up Government Despite 0.58% Margin

Mexico's Right-Wing Media Turned Obrador Into 'Leftist'

Worst-Case Scenario In Mexico Election Tie FREE!

Mexico Vote 2006 Looking Like U.S. Vote 2000

Tensions High as Mexico Presidency Hangs in the Balance

Europe Alone Can Stop Showdown Over Iran

Somalia's capitol now under control of Islamic militias

House Repubs Hype Iran "Threat" In Intel Comm. Report

Authored by a former henchman of John Bolton's

Canada Following Bush Lead In Attacking Science

Systematically scrubbing its websites of information regarding global warming and the Kyoto Protocol

Britain's Muslim Leaders Doubt "Liquid Bomb" Plot

"None of these people who were supposedly to carry out the operation in a few days had bought air tickets"

Was Israel's Goal to Clear Path for U.S. Attack on Iran?

War on Lebanon eliminates White House fears of retaliation Hezbollah rocket attack on Israel

Bush's New "Islamic Fascists" Theme Not Winning Friends In Muslim WorldFREE!

Bush answers the question: How do you piss off one billion moderate Muslims?

In Britain, Every Muslim A Suspect

While many Muslims not convinced that police have strong evidence of plot

'Wipe 'Em Out,' Neo-Cons Push Israel, White House

Olmert urged to widen war beyond Lebanon to Hezbollah supporters, Iran and Syria

Alaska Pipeline Closure Revives Energy Policy Debate

Unexpected shutdown of 8% of U.S. production

One Year Later, Talk About Katrina Poverty Was Just That: Talk

Bush talk about a war on poverty turned out to be just that, talk

Afghanistan To Revive "Vice And Virtue" Police FREE!

 Afghan Morality Department
An Afghan man throws gasoline on smuggled bottles of wine June 18 in Kabul (PHOTO: EPA)

The Taliban's Ministry for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice was the regime's most feared institution, in charge of implementing Islamic rules as defined by the Taliban

Media's Love-Hate for Nuclear Weapons

Since WWII, U.S. media has bias of "good" WMD - as long as we, or our closest friends, control them

Condi Offers Diplomats Concert Instead Of Solutions

Morose music matches mood of multi-lateral meet

Condi's Mideast Mission: Defend Bush, Dodge Diplomacy

Rice's role is not to make policy but to follow Bush policy directives, like a good team player

U.S. Turns to Arab Dictators to Contain Hezbollah

Condi to tap Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Jordan for help

Evangelist Group Kicks Off Pro-Israel Lobby

3,400 high-profile political leaders cheerlead Israel's "biblical birthright"

Gingrich, Neo-Cons Hyping Mideast Crisis As WWIII

Fear mongering or wish fulfillment?

Neo-Cons Cheer Israel Attacks On Lebanon

"This is our war, too," according to Kristol and others

Bush Admin Looking To Sunnis To Restore Mideast Stability

Give me those old-time monarchies and authoritarian governments

Despite 2004 Tsunami Catastrophe, Indonesia Caught By Surprise

500+ killed despite new warning system

Pentagon Agrees to Obey Geneva Conventions

Doesn't apply to "rendered" CIA prisoners held around the world

India Stunned By Terror On Commuter Trains

Demands Pakistan destroy its 'infrastructure of terrorism'


Increased Violence Over Kirkuk Land Claims FREE!

Fallout from Saddam's "Arabization" program just more tinder to light civil war

Iraqis Face Death From Dual Terror: Religious Militias, Criminal Gangs FREE!

About 2,000 killed in July gang or sect violence - torture, strangulation, and multiple gunshots to the head increasingly common

Audit Finds Iraq Reconstruction Awash With Corruption, Violence

$4 billion lost to graft every year

The Iraqi Dream: Leaving Their Country -- Somehow

High demand for passports leads to thriving black market

Slain Iraqi Journalist Typical Of Senseless Deaths

"I know it's dangerous to leave the house, but what can I do? I have to go on living"


Who's Afraid of Hillary Clinton?

Will MoveOn throw the election to anti-war candidate Tasini?

Note To GOP: Mainstream Voters Are War Critics

The extraordinary capacity for self-deception on the right

Lieberman's Defeat A Major Blow To Neo-Cons

The last thing they wanted was a referendum vote on Iraq war

Blaming Bloggers And Avoiding Reality

According to the standard version, Lieberman is the victim of ferocious "liberal bloggers"

The Battle Of Bolton II

White House trying to take advantage of the Middle East crisis to gin up support

House Repubs Take Anti-Immigrant Show On The Road

Unprecedented two-month series of hearings intended to whip up conservative base

Congress May Sue Over Bush's "Signing Statements"

As Bar Association says Bush actions may be unconstitutional

Lieberman's Pro-War Stance Just Part Of His Problems

Closely tied to drug companies, wife hired by one of the capitol's largest lobby shops

Supreme Ct Rule On Gitmo Trial Widens Split Between Bush, GOP Senators

But neither political party is eager to take on this battle in an election year

To Get Big Money Out of Elections, Amend the Constitution

When the Supreme Court keeps interpreting "freedom of speech" in ways that protect the purchasing of political influence by a wealthy elite, its time for citizens to seek a new Constitutional amendment

Pentagon Admits To Keeping Iraqi Body Counts

Estimated 50k dead would be equivalent to 570,000 U.S. citizens killed

White House Defends Covert Bank Tracking Program

Congress, most top banking nations knew of monitoring

In Year Since Ahmadinejad's Election, Iran Civil Rights Deteriorate

Scholars, women's rights demonstrators arrested, NGOs cutoff from donors

Why Does Media Believe Bush On N Korea?

Chronic inability of the U.S. media to place itself in the shoes of rogues placed on the wrong end of the guns

Will N Korea Missile Tests Lead to New Talks?

Apparent missle fizzle reassures diplomats

A Death In The Family On The Baghdad Street

Slain IPS reporter went to places, got information that correspondents from other news orgs couldn't

The Problems With Lou Dobbs

Regularly stirs up anti-immigrant sentiment nightly on CNN

Hundreds of Mexican Miners Fired for Striking

Business interests in Mexico are taking the election of Felipe Calderon as a green light to crack down on striking mine worker

China Selling Arms To Resource Rich Dictatorships

Exchanging weapons for raw materials to fuel the country's rapid economic growth

70-Mile Ocean 'Dead Zone' Forms Off Oregon Coast FREE!

All ocean life dead or gone from zero-oxygen section of Pacific ocean

U.S. Only Western Nation That Doesn't Believe Evolution FREE!

Turkey is only major nation with fewer than America's 30% believers in Darwin

Childhood Obesity Linked To 'Toxic Environment' of Western Diets, Says Researcher FREE!

"Fructose (too much) and fiber (not enough) appear to be cornerstones of the obesity epidemic"

Little Hope of U.S. Entry for LGBT Asylum Seekers

No "derivative status" if partner wins asylum, unlike straight couples

Operation Condor Dictator Stroessner Dies

Same day that museum of torture opened

No Escape From Manmade Noise Even In Ocean Depths FREE!

10x more noise from shipping than in the 1960s

Canada's Oil Sands Won't Cure U.S. Oil Addiction

Despite theoretical potential, House committee chair admits "tar sands" will not solve the energy problem

The Decline And Fall Of San Jose (Also: Mayor)

San Jose's decline fits right into the narrative of the post-dot-com era



Molly Ivins The New "Activist" Judges

High Time For Some Truth Telling

Indiana a Terrorist Target?

No Shortage of Fear

The Media's Real Problem: No Principle, No Guts, No Grace

24/7 Coverage Doesn't Cover It

Bill Moyers For President

Count On Bush And Other Repubs For Comic Relief

The Suicide of Capitalism

The War Against Minimum Wage

More Immigrant Bashing on the Way


Robert Scheer The Fight Over The Soul Of The Democratic Party

Bush Isn't Making Us Any Safer

Why We Don't Know Our Enemy

Israel Dependent On The Drug Of Militarism

Bush Coddling Mideast Terrorists

What Was Revealed By That Open Mike

A Lesson From Nixon's Playbook

The Wish For A Magic Solution In Iraq


Alexander Cockburn Who's To Blame For Israel's Lebanon Debacle?

In Praise of Stupid Emperors

The Sweetness Of Lieberman's Defeat

Hezbollah's Top Ally In Israel

The Triumph of Crackpot Realism

Death of Venice

The War in Iraq: A Dreadful Mistake


Steve Young Dear Air America...

President Chauncy

Everything Proves Dems Soft On Terrorism

The Hannity-Lieberman Bluff

The Sucker Base

Stop The Stem Cell Murders Now

The Warren Bell Diaries

Hannity's Patsies


Bush's Legacy: The Second 30 Years War The Bush Administration has taken to describing the war on terror as a prolonged struggle against Islamo Fascism. The message is clear -- this war won't end any time soon, and therefore shouldn't be compared with, say, World War I, World War II or even the Vietnam War. This war is one likely to last well into the 21st century. Think "Cold War."

But the most appropriate analogy to the prolonged War on Terror described by the Bush Administration may be the religious wars that erupted in the West during the 6th and the 16th centuries. What paved the way for those wars was political rot, and where political conviction stagnated, religious belief filled the vacuum

Albion Monitor
Issue 148

Editor: Jeff Elliott (

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