SEARCH FOR A NUCLEAR WEAPON FOR LIMITED CONFLICTS
Bromley and David Grahame report on the Pentagon's search for a nuclear
FUTURE OF NUCLEAR ARMS CONTROL
an interactive assessment
of nuclear disarmament after the Moscow Summit,
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Journalists' Essential Field Guide to Afghanistan
by Edward Girardet
by The European
Center for War,
The News Media
of a popular nightclub on the largely Hindu Indonesian island of Bali
threatens to destabilize the world's largest Muslim country, and may provide
conclusive proof of the spread of terrorism to Asia.
For Background analysis, click here.
Franklin Roosevelt proclaimed that "The only thing we have to fear
is fear itself." Lately, fear seems to be driving America into a
war whose objectives still remain ill defined. As the debate in Congress
and the Senate noted, Iran and North Korea are closer to having a nuclear
weapon than Saddam Hussein, and U.S. intelligence has failed to come up
with any conclusive links between Saddam and either al-Qaeda or 9/11.
What Baghdad does have is access to a large chunk of the world's oil.
By occupying Iraq, the US will not only end Saddam's regime, it will also
have the option freezing out the Russians and French who have invested
heavily in Iraqi oil fields, and it will be in a position to exert influence
over much of the rest of the world's energy. Intentionally or not, the
American occupation of Iraq is likely to turn the US into a defacto empire--if
the rest of the world accepts that proposition.
AMERICANS SEEM READY FOR WAR
The latest survey by the Pew Foundation and the Council on Foreign Relations
indicate that a majority supports a war to rid Iraq of Saddam Hussein,
and that most believe that Iraq was involved in 9/11 despite the fact
that leading intelligence agencies including the CIA have failed to find
any credible connection. The poll was carried out before President Bush's
October 7 speech.
CIA'S LATEST ASSESSMENT OF WHAT IRAQ HAS
detailed maps of locations, quantities of chemical weapons, and specific
violations of UN resolutions...plus photos of the weapons themselves
MAY ACCELERATE THE ATTACK ON IRAQ
By relying on new
technology and surgically striking at Iraq's leadership, the US could
attack Iraq with far fewer troops than it used in the Gulf War.
The New York Times, October 13, 2002
York Times: The US is already positioning forces for an attack
TOMMY FRANKS FOR SADDAM HUSSEIN
Giving up on the Iraqi opposition movement, Washington now seems to be
placing its hopes on a benevolent US military dictatorship in Iraq led
by a US general who doesn't speak the language, has little knowledge of
the customs or politics of the place, but who will do his best to emulate
General Douglas MacArthur's remarkable efforts in postwar Japan.
Julian Borger in the Guardian, October 12, 2002
New York Times on the plan to substitute Franks for Saddam
As Russian analysts
see it, Washington's concerns over weapons of mass destruction and Saddam's
inhumanity are not to be taken seriously. Most analysts see an outright
power grab for Middle Eastern oil. "...the main motive is the fight
for resources, for high-quality, inexpensive, middle-eastern Iraqi (in
this case) oil. Iraq possesses up to a fourth of world oil reserves compared
with 2.5 percent in the United States, which consumes around a fourth
of the liquid fuel produced in the world..."
By Andrey Stepanovich in Trud under rubric "The World Today":
"Awaiting H Hour: Political Scientists Argue About Goals and Consequences
of a US Strike on Iraq", from the Center for Defense Information,
October 8, 2002
ARAB VIEW: IRAQ IS NOT THE REAL TARGET
Interviewed in Al-Ahram, Mohamad Heikal, one of Egypt's leading political
analysts, argues that Washington is really maneuvering for to have the
upper hand over future competitors such as China and Russia.
CRITICAL VIEW: A MISLEADING MESSAGE
analysts--including the CIA's George Tenet--do not really see Saddam as
an immediate threat unless he is backed in a corner. That hasn't stopped
George Bush from painting the Iraqi dictator as the greatest menace the
US currently faces in the world today. By David Corn in The Nation, October
CIA BELIEVES THAT IRAQ WILL TRY TO USE UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES TO DROP
CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL AGENTS ON ISRAEL
including the CIA, report that Iraqis have been experimenting with unmanned
versions of a Czech training jet which can disperse chemical or biological
weapons. The main target in a confrontation is likely to be Israel.
By Center for Defense Information, October 10, 2002
NEWS EXECUTIVES SCRAMBLING FOR WAR ACCESS
increasing pressure from news executives, Washington appears determined
to exclude American journalists from the front lines or any direct contact
with what is actually happening.
By Neil Dodd, in EPN-Reporter.com, October 9, 2002
the U.S. goes to war with Iraq, it will turn much of the preparatory work
over to private companies who can carry out the dirty work without directly
implicating Washington. They are essentially soldiers for hire who are
beyond the reach of the Universal Code of Military Justice.
By Leslie Wayne in
the New York Times, October 13, 2002
AN EMPIRE IN SPITE OF ITSELF
Zakaria in last week's New Yorker, expounds on why America calls the shots,
whether it really wants to or not. Zakaria takes issue with Robert Kagan's
thesis in "Strength and Weakness." The American abandonment
of multilateralism has nothing to do with American strength, notes Zakaria.
In fact, America was relatively stronger when it helped found the U.N.
and other international organizations. George Bush's obsession with going
it alone is much closer to a pre-global, puritanical strain in American
politics which distrusts entanglements with foreigners. Abandoning the
good works of the last half century carries a heavy price though. "The
belief that America is different is its ultimate source of strength,"
notes Zakaria. "If we mobilize all our awesome powers and lose this
one, we will have hegemonybut will it be worth having?"
Fareed Zakaria in the New Yorker
BALI NIGHTCLUB BOMBING
may be the worlds largest Islamic country, but 95% of Balis
3 million population are Balinesian Hindus. 90% of the provinces
income comes from tourism which attracts nearly a third of the 5 million
tourists who visit Indonesia yearly. Bali has frequently been the target
of Indonesian Muslims in the past. The current threat to the islands
economy risks stirring Hindu vigilantism against the islands tiny
Muslim minority. The group most likely to profit immediately from the
attack is the Indonesian Army which has been under growing pressure to
extricate itself from local politics, but still sees itself as the sole
protector of Indonesias peaceful equilibrium.
By Bill guerin in the Asia Times, October 15, 2002
NIGHTCLUB BLAST--U.S. AMBASSADOR WARNED OF DANGER A MONTH EARLIER
repeated threats of a terrorist action, the US closed its embassy for
a week. The Indonesians preferred to ignore the warnings. Not any longer.
By Matthew Moore in the Sydney (Australia) Morning Herald, October 13,
IS NOT THE ONLY INDONESIAN TROUBLE SPOT
a prescient report, the International Crisis Group observes that at least
part of the recent penchant for violence stems from the militarys
predatory stranglehold over the local economy and politics. Better local
police and more locally responsive administrations are starting points,
but transferring power to the local level is also likely to increase competition
between the police and military both for power and bribes, and that could
increase the violence until the situation stabilizes.
The International Crisis Group, October 2002
MILITARY AND CHECHEN POLICE COLLABORATE ON OIL SMUGGLING
a million tons of oil are extracted illegally from Chechnya every year,
processed in micro-refineries known as "samovars," and shipped
in long truck convoys across the border with what the Chechens charge
is the collusion of Russian military commanders and local pro-Moscow police.
By Umatt Dudayev, Institute for War & Peace Reporting, October 10,
INFORMATION ON US CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL WARFARE EXPERIMENTS ON US PERSONNEL
the 1960s the US government tested chemical and biological weapons on
its own personnel in a Pentagon exercise known as Project 112. The tests
were carried out in Britain, Canada and the U.S. A Navy component was
codenamed SHAD for "Shipboard Hazard and Defense." New information
on the testing is gradually being released.
a press conference on the latest reports click here.
Pentagon's version of the Reports
Administration SHAD page
and marines: Bush, Blair and democratization
by Anatol Levin
real line of the Bush administration on Iraq is regime
change. A compliant not democratic Iraq is its objective, the aim
being to secure a compliant Middle East. Now, in its rhetoric, the administration
is calling for democracy in Iraq, and Bush academics are calling for,
and explaining the US strategy in terms of, a desire to bring democracy
to the entire Arab world. This is a stroke of malign brilliance. It is
unbelievable to those who study what is actually happening. Nonetheless,
it may prove highly influential in the US because of the way in which
rigid, ideological paradigms dominate the public discussion here... "
A series of articles exploring the similarities between Washington's current
aspirations and Britain's experience of Empire.
In Open Democracy.Net
ROBERT BYRD'S DISSENT ON IRAQ
great Roman historian, Titus Livius, said, " All things will be clear
and distinct to the man who does not hurry; haste is blind and improvident."
"Blind and improvident," Mr. President. "Blind and
improvident." Congress would be wise to heed those words today,
for as sure as the sun rises in the east, we are embarking on a course
of action with regard to Iraq that, in its haste, is both blind and improvident.
We are rushing into war without fully discussing why, without thoroughly
considering the consequences, or without making any attempt to explore
what steps we might take to avert conflict.
The newly bellicose mood that permeates this White House is unfortunate,
all the more so because it is clearly motivated by campaign politics.
Republicans are already running attack ads against Democrats on Iraq.
Democrats favor fast approval of a resolution so they can change the subject
to domestic economic problems. (NY Times 9/20/2002)
Before risking the lives of American troops, all members of Congress
Democrats and Republicans alike must overcome the siren
song of political polls and focus strictly on the merits, not the politics,
of this most serious issue.
The resolution before us today is not only a product of haste; it
is also a product of presidential hubris. This resolution is breathtaking
in its scope. It redefines the nature of defense, and reinterprets
the Constitution to suit the will of the Executive Branch. It would give
the President blanket authority to launch a unilateral preemptive attack
on a sovereign nation that is perceived to be a threat to the United States.
This is an unprecedented and unfounded interpretation of the President's
authority under the Constitution, not to mention the fact that it
stands the charter of the United Nations on its head.
By Senator Robert Byrd (Democrat, West Virginia)
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interns to work on research projects with the Director of the Center for
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