Key Documents

NOTE: Information regarding the WMD lies and other matters directly related to the prior stage of the war is available at Iraq Antiwar Resources. Also there are antiwar songs, poetry, video, statements of famous people, and much more.

December, 2005

The Occupation

Occupation Resistance Analysis

General lies to protect Rumsfeld: General Retreats on Rumsfeld Rift.

Iraqi Sunnis grasp election olive branch of an independent investigation.

New crisis spreading: Fuel Crisis Deepens in Iraq With Lines Forming at Pumps.

After training at Abu Ghraib: GI's to Increase US Supervision of Iraqi Police.

The CIA needs procedures for when its non-torture kills prisoners, the Washington Post reports: Covert CIA Program Withstands New Furor: Anti-Terror Effort Continues to Grow.

The agency is working to establish procedures in the event a prisoner dies in custody. One proposal circulating among mid-level officers calls for rushing in a CIA pathologist to perform an autopsy and then quickly burning the body, according to two sources.

To US chagrin, al-Sadr may control the largest single group of deputies in the new parliament: Shiite cleric emerging as a highly influential political leader.

Carl Conetta of the Project on Defense Alternatives sends this important analysis of the recent election: Sunni Arab protests will soon escalate in Iraq as electoral position slips.

The Sunni Arab community will find it difficult to accept that 18.5 percent of council seats constitutes fair representation – although a portion of Allawi’s votes may also be considered "Sunni-based". At any rate, the current electoral system has disadvantaged the Sunni regions in several ways, as explained below. (In this light, the votes totals should leave no doubt that Sunni Arabs constitute more than 20 percent of the Iraqi population).

The US is putting pressure on the new Shia rulers by "finding" more secret prisons: Are Iraqi police engaging in torture tactics? NBC exclusive interview: Iraqi policeman says it's just how things are done.

Oil Market Analysts Issue Dire Warnings. At most 25 more years of oil from known reserves.

A new report by Congressman John Conyers and the House Judiciary Committee Democratic Staff: The Constitution in Crisis; The Downing Street Minutes and Deception, Manipulation, Torture, Retribution, and Coverups in the Iraq War [Full report: pdf] or [Chapter by chapter: pdf]. One finding in the report: White House Leaked Classified Intelligence to Make its Case for War.

There is a prima facie case that these actions by the President, Vice-President and other members of the Bush Administration violated a number of federal laws, including (1) Committing a Fraud against the United States; (2) Making False Statements to Congress; (3) The War Powers Resolution; (4) Misuse of Government Funds; (5) federal laws and international treaties prohibiting torture and cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment; (6) federal laws concerning retaliating against witnesses and other individuals; and (7) federal laws and regulations concerning leaking and other misuse of intelligence.

Remember, the Democrats bear their share of responsibility: CIA renditions began under Clinton: agent.

Iraq's Sunni Arab, secular Shiites shun talks with religious bloc.

International team to review Iraq election.

Iraqi foreign minister: Zeibari indicates Iraq needs wide governing coalition.

Death threats cut Iraq oil flow in the north. And in the south: Iraq South Oil Output Down 11% On Export Suspension due to bad weather.

UN critical of US giving $1.4 Billion of Iraqi money to KBR/Halliburton in a sweetheart deal: U.N. calls on U.S. to settle dispute over no-bid Iraq contract.

British government tries to suppress documents showing that it knowingly tolerated torture despite official denials: Calling All Bloggers: These Documents need publishing.

Kids! US Teen Runs Off to Iraq by Himself. Orders food using an Arabic phrase book.

[H]e said he spoke with U.S. soldiers guarding his Baghdad hotel who told him they are treated better by Sunni Arabs — the minority population that enjoyed a high standing under Saddam Hussein and are now thought to fuel the insurgency — than by the majority Shiites....
"You go to, like, the worst place in the world and things are terrible," he said. "When you go back home you have such a new appreciation for all the blessing you have there, and I'm just going to be, like, ecstatic for life."

UPI reports story from World Socialist Web Site: Uranium suspected in Iraq merc's death.

The National Spy-On-Everyone Agency: NSA Web Site Places 'Cookies' on Computers.

Shi'ite, Kurd leaders start to split posts.

A new report says the world has been far more peaceful since the end of the Cold War. Armed conflicts dropped 40% from 1992 to 2003 and mass slaughters of civilians dropped 80%. No wonder the War State has been in such a panic, inventing the Global War Against Terrorism. Peace is, as always, the enemy of the Imperial State: Peace on Earth? Increasingly, Yes.

New cold war brewing, between US and China, Russia, and, possibly, E`urope: Europeans criticize U.S. sanctions as potential risk to Iran talks.

Tom Lasseter reports on the Kurdish preparations for their war of liberation: Kurds in Iraqi army proclaim loyalty to militia.

Kurdish leaders have inserted more than 10,000 of their militia members into Iraqi army divisions in northern Iraq to lay the groundwork to swarm south, seize the oil-rich city of Kirkuk and possibly half of Mosul, Iraq's third-largest city, and secure the borders of an independent Kurdistan.... The soldiers said that while they wore Iraqi army uniforms they still considered themselves members of the Peshmerga - the Kurdish militia - and were awaiting orders from Kurdish leaders to break ranks. Many said they wouldn't hesitate to kill their Iraqi army comrades, especially Arabs, if a fight for an independent Kurdistan erupted. "It doesn't matter if we have to fight the Arabs in our own battalion," said Gabriel Mohammed, a Kurdish soldier in the Iraqi army who was escorting a Knight Ridder reporter through Kirkuk. "Kirkuk will be ours."

UN aide finds Iraq vote 'credible'.

Iraq's micro parties could play key role. Shiites and Kurds look to be big winners of this month's vote, but tiny parties could emerge as power brokers.

Former Prisoner Accuses US Troops of Torturing Iraqi Detainees.

Defending the Imperial Presidency: U.S. Defends Conduct in Padilla Case.

US court: Release Abu Ghraib photos.

Keeping incompetents in charge, no matter what: Chiefs Demoted in Pentagon Succession Line.

10,000 protesters march in Baghdad calling for a National Unity giovernment.

From Asia Times: Sunnis on hit list.

Many Iraqi soldiers see a civil war on the horizon.

Juan Cole: Top Ten Myths about Iraq in 2005

For the holidays: The 1914 Christmas Truce and the Possibility of Peace. [See also my other recent articles: Total surveillance state takes giant leap in Britain and: Is prejudice a mental illness?.]

Juan Cole on the sorry state of Christians in Iraq this Christmas: Iraqi Christians in Peril this Christmas.

More demonstrations: Sunnis mount protests.

Pepe Escobar: The ultimate quagmire.

A new draft: Will U.S. begin sending reluctant diplomats to Iraq?

The total surveillance state, USA style: Spy Agency Mined Vast Data Trove, Officials Report.

A reminder of the moment when a different world was glimpsed, and of the generals' attempt to restore killing as usual: Christmas truce still stirs Europe 90 years later. And a recent French film will bring the truce to a wider audience: Joyeux Noel . Anyone seen it?

Over 90 candidates in last week's election were disqualified after the fact: Iraqi court disqualifies prominent Sunni candidates.

[P]reliminary results showed that some of the prominent Sunni politicians on the list had likely won seats. Among those who could lose their seats are: Adnan al-Janabi, the second-highest ranking member of the constitutional committee and a top candidate on U.S.-backed former prime minister Ayad Allawi's slate, and Rasem al-Awadi, a National Assembly member and also on Allawi's slate. Five members of the Iraqi Accord Front, the principal Sunni electoral slate, also were on the list.

Shias reject Iraq election re-run. But: Iraqi Shias willing to discuss coalition govt with Sunnis.

US Airstrikes Take Toll on Civilians. Eyewitnesses Cite Scores Killed in Marine Offensive in Western Iraq.

A reader points out this important quote from Col. Thomas Hammes (ret.): [I]f I'm going to draw down the first people who need to go are the armed contractors, they are the real source of irritation. I mean, our forces are a source of irritation but the armed contractors from the Iraqis I worked with when I was there, they really don't like those people. They need to go. Iraq Troop Drawdown. As the reader says: This is a huge issue. It is one of the biggest suppressed stories of this war. He is correct that removal of the tens of thousands of mercenaries is a critical issue. What country can tolerate huge numbers of foreigners allowed to do anything they want, with complete impunity?

Hundreds of thousands protest: Major demonstrations protest Iraq elections.

What will the con man pull next? He got 0.34% of the vote, or less: Chalabi’s defeat puts U.S. friends in quandary Should his backers go with his view that it was a fraudulent election?

US Allies in Iraq Plan Pullout, Adding to Pressure on Bush.

Nothing to celebrate: US Plans Slight Force Cut, Up to 5,000 Troops, in Iraq.

The International Republican Institute opposing the will of the people world-wide: Dressing Iraq for democracy.

What a country! A courts says two men are held illegally. Then it says they can be held "indefinitely" [in other words, forever]: Federal judge rules Chinese Gitmo detainees can be held indefinitely.

More administration lawbreaking: Nuclear Monitoring of Muslims Done Without Search Warrants.

As it sentences a Dutch trader to 15 years for selling chemicals for chemical weapons, the Dutch court ruled: Killing of Iraq Kurds 'genocide'. Will Rumsfeld now be tried for his role?

Decline in star power: Stars turn backs on America's troops in Iraq. Al Franken still goes.

American soldier shoots Iraqi after sex. Over a hundred thousand young American men (and women) in a foreign country. Are they really chaste for a year or more at a time? Of course not. What is going on sexually among US troops in Iraq is one of the great untold stories of Iraq. Having read perhaps 30,000-50,000 articles on Iraq, I've seen less than a dozen mentions of anything related to sex. This article give one tiny glimpse into this enormous world.

The elections that brought the country together: Iraq groups threaten boycott.

All our international communications are being monitored by the total surveillance state: Wiretaps said to sift all overseas contacts. Vast US effort seen on eavesdropping.

Could be a huge find, in the Kurdish region: DNO finds oil in north Iraq well.

The murder of Italian agent Nicola Calipari was so embarrassing to the US, they may have to pretend they take it seriously and find a new rotten apple to screw: Marine Investigated for Killing in Iraq.

The Washington Times [note the source] reports on extensive negotiations between Washington and the Ba'ath resistance: Washington seeks partial truce with Iraqi insurgents.

Shia Storm Home in Basra. The southern province is a stronghold for Iraq's main Shia coalition, but not everyone is as pleased as its landslide victory suggests.

Coercion marred Iraq elections: experts.

As the election brings the country together: Iraq election losers unite to contest result, demanding a new election and threatening to boycott Parliament. Also: Iraq rebels 'intensify violence'.

An Iraqi Sunni leader said insurgents will intensify attacks to drive out US troops and violence will worsen if a Shiite-led government returns to power, as seems likely.... "Not a single honest Iraqi nationalist would accept the Iranians or their agents ruling the country."

Divisions Over Reconciliation Event. Efforts to include former Baathists and extremists in February peace conference fuel controversy.

The outgoing Iraqi Minister for Torture and Murder: Iraq Minister Cites Threat of Hussein Loyalists.

As the US and allies turn hundreds of thousands of Iraqis into internally displaced persons: Aid needed for displaced in Anbar, demonstrators say.

Various private armies still exist, threatening Iraq's national security.

More horror stories from Indians working in Iraq: Eight boys return from Iraq to tell the tale of horror.

After two month suspension: Iraq resumes nothern oil exports.

Iraqis express anger over 'covert' US press plan. However, Lila Rajiva points out that this program is nothing new. The US has tried to control the Iraqi press ever since occupying the country: No News is Bad News: A Short History of Radio Free Iraq.

As Iraq falls apart, Cheney keeps his priorities straight: Cheney Flies in Comfort .

Allah, and Iran, thank George Bush: Iraqi vote points to Islamist path. Early returns reveal that Shiites and Sunnis opted for religious parties.

Dead men voted in poll, claim Iraq parties.

Iraq election body rejects fraud claims.

Patrick Cockburn: Iraq's election result: a divided nation.

The election marks the final shipwreck of American and British hopes of establishing a pro-Western secular democracy in a united Iraq. Islamic fundamentalist movements are ever more powerful in both the Sunni and Shia communities. Ghassan Attiyah, an Iraqi commentator, said: "In two and a half years Bush has succeeded in creating two new Talibans in Iraq."

Fewer African-Americans enlisting in the military.

Rep. Conyers Releases Report on Misconduct of Bush Administration Concerning Iraq War. Calls for Censure of President Bush and Vice President Cheney. Full report: Investigative Status Report of the House Judiciary Committee Democratic Staff. Executive Summary.

Honeymoon over as Sunnis cry foul over Iraq vote.

Another day, another scandal: FBI Watched Activist Groups, New Files Show, pretending it had something to do with combating "terrorism".

Did Bush say "Bring it on!" again? Honeymoon over as Sunnis cry foul over Iraq vote. Allawi also alleges fraud.

At last the "I" word is uttered in polite company. Senator Barbara Boxer: Senator says she's asked for opinions on Bush impeachment. And Rep. John Lewis: Congressman calls for Bush impeachment. See also: Letter from Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) to Vice President Cheney regarding NSA domestic wiretapping, July 17th 2003.

Interesting speculation on why the NSA Sying Had to be Kept Secret.

The creeping authoritarian state: ACLU says FBI misuses terror powers to track political groups. And: Pentagon's Intelligence Authority Widens. See also: ACLU Pizza.

Iran wins, US looses: Allawi trails in third place in poll update.

Iraq's Shi'ites eye new majority as results come in.

Rise in poll complaints troubles Iraq vote monitors. See also: Voting irregularities reported in Kurdish areas.

At the Sharqia high school in central Baghdad, which was used as a polling station, a senior election official was said to have asked voters if they were going to vote for 555 [the Shia UIA]. Unless they said yes, they were not given ballot papers.

Report Cites Torture in US Prison in Afghanistan.

Iraq fuel price hike sparks protests.

Royal Scots in shock posting back to Iraq with only two weeks warning.

The election over, it's screw the poor time as gasoline prices are tripled and other energy prices are raised by lame duck government that promised otherwise just days ago: Demonstrations over Fuel Price Increases in Iraq.

The coming Isalamic masters: Iraq Shi'ites scent big win as count goes on.

Another White house lie, that Congress was briefed about the illegal wiretapping: Former Intel Chairman Graham: White House Made ‘No Reference’ to NSA Program In Briefings.

US lies, again... Planted PR Stories Not News to Military. U.S. officials in Iraq knew that a contractor was paying local papers. Discretion was the key. When will the press stop reporting the lies of the serial liar? Never.

The military never "tortures." They only torture: Torture ban does not affect U.S. military, says Rumsfeld.

Maybe he should stay in the bunker? Sen. Clinton to Vice President Cheney: Go to Iraq. Followed by a day: Cheney Visits Iraq; Attacks Kill 19.

Patrick Cockburn: Iraq votes counted against backdrop of casual killings.

Warfare by other means: After Sweeping Iraq Vote, Power Wrangles to Start.

Leading Sunni opens door to Iraqi alliance: Government coalition would include secular Shiites, Kurds.

Sunni alliance hails Iraq election as success in their fight against occupation and a Shia-dominated state.

Iraqi President praises the winners: Talebani praises Iran role in polls. See also: Iraq’s election a victory for Iran, says Rafsanjani.

A regular pattern of "talks", not "negotiations": Iraq rebels in talks.

Is the McCain amendment a pyrrhic victory? Torture Ban May Have a Loophole or two.

Criminal admits guilt. Says will offend again if given the opportunity. Surely lifelong detention in Guantanamo is only option: Bush Acknowleges Allowing Eavesdropping: Feingold: 'It's a Sad Day'. See also: Spying could create backlash in Congress; public reaction hinges on identity of targets.

Another chink in American civil liberties removed: Bush acknowledges secret order for domestic spying without a warrant or court order. See also Hilzoy's analysis -- Above the Law 2 -- of the orders (il)legality. As he states "They had no need to go around the law. They could easily have obeyed it. They just didn't want to." He argues compellingly that impeachment is the appropriate response to such flagrant illegality by a President. Further, see: NY Times Self-Censorship, AKA "the President's Press" on the NYT's withholding of this criminal behavior till after the President's reelection and until the President became unpopular.

Ballot Shortage Keeps Some From Iraq Polls.

Whatever happens, people did vote: High turnout for Iraq vote. But partisan wrangling probably won't bring people together as United Iraqi Alliance seeks to freeze out Sunnis from power: High voter turnout in Iraq promises fully representative parliament.

Juan Cole: What the Sunni Arab Vote Really Means.

Dispatch from la la land: Bush calls criticism of war 'irresponsible'.

US may seek $100bn more for Iraq.

Dahr Jamail on the invisible air war: The deadly skies over Iraq.

In North, Kurdistan Comes First, Iraq Comes Second.

For what it's worth, which isn't much: Early indications suggest close race in Iraq poll.

Condi in charge: State Department takes over Iraq reconstruction.

In Baghdad: Morgue can't cope with numbers of bodies arriving on a daily basis, doctors say.

Women legislators' reviews mixed in Iraq.

Italy to Pull Out 300 Troops From Iraq in January, Martino Says.

Absolute evil. Man imprisoned by the Taliban for plotting to kill Osama bin Laden has been locked in Guantanamo gulag for four years. Now he's "cleared" and still held: Detainee Cleared for Release Is in Limbo at Guantanamo.

But unlike many detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Turkistani was not captured on the battlefield, nor was he a suspected terrorist. Instead, he was swept up in the confusion that marked the early days of the U.S. war in Afghanistan, and even as a potential ally found himself with no recourse to challenge his detention. "The crowning irony is that he is an enemy of bin Laden, who was charged with conspiring to kill him, and we hold him prisoner today," said Sabin Willett, a lawyer who has filed a petition with the U.S. District Court in Washington on Turkistani's behalf. "It's heartbreaking that we throw people into jail to rot."

Will it mean anything? Doubtful: Bush and McCain Reach Deal on Treatment of Terror Suspects.

EU disquiet over ‘renditions’ grows.

In time for 2008 elections: US aims to complete total force generation in Iraq by August 2007.

US Army officer charged in Iraq fraud scam.

On the eve, Nina Kamp, Michael O'Hanlon, and Amy Unikewicz evaluate: The State of Iraq: An Update.

Harith al-Dari, Secretary General of the Association of Muslim Scholars in Iraq: No elections will be credible while occupation continues. Iaq's current political process will not solve the crisis. Only a US and British pullout and a UN sponsored poll can do that

Democracy Is Most Attractive for Shiites Leading in the Polls. all else cower in fear from Shia intimidation.

Some secular or Sunni Arab candidates here have been shot, their campaign headquarters have been attacked, and their posters rarely survive more than a few hours. The only party that seems immune is the Shiite alliance, which could well win a dominant role in Iraq's 275-member parliament. Its supporters include some of the Shiite militias that are widely accused of carrying out killings and other violence.

As various sides gear up for fraud: Security Chaos Scares Off Int'l Observers for Iraq Poll.

Shia Alliance Woos Basra. Voters in the southern city are debating the merits of secularism versus sectarianism in the run-up to election day.

In Salahaddin province: Iraq regional election official threatens to quit.

As women's' rights deteriorate: Men Stifling Women Voters. Activists fear a combination of violence and chauvinism will keep Iraqi women from the polls.

Infighting for electoral advantage: Police Seize Forged Ballots Headed to Iraq From Iran. But: Iraq border chief denies forged ballots seized.

Elections in a climate of intimidation and murder: For Kurds, A Surge Of Violence In Campaign. See also: Kurds Concerned About Fraud. Voters sceptical despite an increase in monitors and promises from Kurdish leaders of clean elections.

In Maysan province: Clan feuds mix with politics in Iraq's poor south.

New Iraq govt may not be operational until April.

Shia want all the power: Report of planned Iraq military purge to push the Kurds out from the Defense Ministry.

A couple more dead: Fatal Torture of Inmates Suspected.

PM] Jafari vowed that his government would seriously look into the allegations. "We should provide prisoners with facilities that are up to international standards," he said. But he and his deputies also tried to minimize the issue, with one advisor arguing that Iraqis were far more concerned about bread-and-butter issues such as jobs, electricity and water service than they were about the prisoner abuse scandal. Jafari likened reports of torture and starvation to inmate abuse by American troops at Abu Ghraib prison. "It's a matter of individuals," he argued, "not the government."

Here's a joke. The ultimate torture state will check others for getting caught doing what the Americans taught them: To Halt Abuses, U.S. Will Inspect Jails Run by Iraq. Where is the punishment for those who ordered the torture, and for those in the Iraqi government who are covering it up by denying it ever happened? Or will Bush give them a Medal of Freedom, or a top law enforcement post, as he does for the US torturers?

There are absolutely no limits this administration won't go to in order to make torture legal. In anticipation of Congress passing the McCain amendment making the Army Fild Manual the standard, they've simply rewritten the manual to make "torture" acceptable and thus legal: New Army Rules May Snarl Talks With McCain on Detainee Issue.

Must Read! Robert Dreyfuss on the Iran-connected Shia Islamofascists running the torture gulags and death squads in "liberated" Iraq: Bush's Shiite Gang in Baghdad. Related: Ex-general says Iranian led torture of detainees.

An Iraqi general formerly in charge of special Interior Ministry forces said yesterday that a senior Iranian intelligence officer was in charge of a network of detention centers where suspected insurgents were routinely tortured and sometimes killed....
Gen. al-Samarrai said the Iranian intelligence officer, Tahseer Nasr Lawandi, works directly under the Kurdish deputy minister, Gen. Hussein Kamel, and is known throughout the ministry as "The Engineer."

Further sign of eroding freedom: Is the Pentagon spying on Americans? Secret database obtained by NBC News tracks ‘suspicious’ domestic groups.

The others are getting out: US alone in Iraq as allies make for the exits.

Sectarianism rules: Iraqi Official's Visit to Sunni Province Underscores Depth of Distrust.

Tom Lasseter reveals the new Iraqi death squads of the Badr Organization, tied to the Interior Ministry: Iran gaining influence, power in Iraq through militia.

There also have been allegations that the militia that's loyal to radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who also has Iranian support, is responsible for some of the killings. Many of the details of the incidents, however, point more to Badr. For instance, the killers often are reported as traveling in white Toyota Land Cruisers and carrying Glock pistols. Both are common at the Badr headquarters in Baghdad, but not with al-Sadr's Mahdi Army fighters, most of whom are poor and travel in beat-up vans and cars.

In Basra, the killings of "unknown persons" are a daily occurrence: Militia presence still haunts Iraq's Basra.

The new army: Corruption and fear in the ranks dog Iraqi forces, U.S. soldiers say. And: Iraqi Army endures desertions.

In Iraq, Old-Style Chicago Politics Is Boss. Major parties rely on a patronage system, but complaints about greed may lose them support.

Many displaced in west fear returning home fearing new attacks.

Lying like a torturer: Iraqi Ministry Denies Captives Were Abused.

An effort to suppress the Sunni vote? The murderous: Wolf Brigade has been sent to Ramadi. Meanwhile, Mizhar al-Dulaimi, head of the Free Progressive Iraqi Party, was killed in Ramadi: Prominent Sunni politician shot dead in Iraq.

ABC News evaluates how things stand, combining their poll wth work by Iraqi journalists: Fourth Installment of "Where Things Stand" in Iraq: Three Years Later, On the Eve of the Iraqi Elections.

Drawdown means turning the country over to mercenaries: Ruling to usher more private contractors into Iraq.

Dirty tricks taint vibrant Iraqi election campaign.

"Our people stick our posters up in the evening and in the morning we find them torn down," he told reporters recently. "We as civilians are not allowed to travel during the curfew, so who is tearing them down?"

Candidates woo voters as fear pervades Iraq.

Guns and choppers blaze Iraq's campaign trail.

Kirkuk braced for showdown as Iraq election looms.

Kurdish youth hold key to power in Iraqi elections . Pop star drafted in as voters threaten to stay away in protest at living conditions .

Village Sheiks Look To Clerics on Vote. Guidance Seen as Hurting Secular Parties.

Iraq ex-PM Allawi eyes old job, backed by old foes. But: Shi'ite militiamen see Allawi as Iraq election foe.

Somewhat unlikely: Secular Shiites May Hold Balance in Iraq Election. Many are torn between a slate that reflects their lifestyles and one that represents their sect.

290,000 Israelis Eligible to Vote in Iraqi Elections.

Syrians fearful of becoming next Iraq. Believe toppling of Bashar Assad's regime would unleash nation's divisions.

US propaganda is widespread, often disguised . Revelations about contractor paying for 'good news' stories in Iraq tip of iceberg.

"We call our stuff information and the enemy's propaganda.

Neighbor tells intruder to but out: Iraq pullout would quell insurgency: Turkish PM.

A new poll by ABC News, BBC, Time and others sheds light on Iraqi attitudes: hate occupation, but have hope for the future [Note the different headlines]: Most Iraqis oppose U.S troops, poll says. More detail in: Poll: Broad Optimism in Iraq, But Also Deep Divisions Among Groups. Here are the Full Survey Results [pdf].

Ba'athist insurgents to protect Iraq elections from al-Qa'eda.

"Zarqawi is an American, Israeli and Iranian agent who is trying to keep our country unstable so that the Sunnis will keep facing occupation," said Abu Abdullah, a Ba'athist insurgent leader.

Withdrawal? What withdrawal? Ambassador Says Elections May Not Lead to Withdrawal .

They asked him about people in his home town, including his friends. so they couldn't have confused him with someone else with a similar name: German in CIA case doubts 'mistaken identity'.

Abuse Cited In 2nd Jail Operated by Iraqi Ministry: Official Says 12 Prisoners Subjected to 'Severe Torture'.

As the elections approach, an invaluable new report from Carl Conetta of the Project on Defense Alternatives: Masque of Democracy: Iraqi Election System Still Disfavors Sunni Arabs, Favors Kurds [html] or pdf. It demonstrates that the system systematically underrepresents Sunnis in several ways, making it less likely that they will accept the results.

The procedures for the December 2005 election of Iraq’s Council of Representatives, which will govern for four years, puts Sunni Arab areas at a distinct disadvantage. It virtually guarantees that Sunni Arabs will be under-represented in government. This is no way to “win hearts and minds” or to erode support for the insurgency.

The New York Times reports: Commission Finds Irregularities in Iraqi Voter Registration.

EU part of torture regime: EU concealed deal with US to allow 'rendition' flights.

In a climate of pervasive intimidation, as the New York Times reports that all 100,000 posters put up by one party at the cost of its entire election budget were torn down: Meeting with Iraqi political parties, UN envoy stresses need for fair elections.

Do we now have: Secret Laws?

Support Our Troops? Family Upset Over Marine's Body Arriving As Freight. Marine Bodies Sent To Families On Commercial Airliners. I guess Air Force One was busy going to fundraisers.

MI6 and CIA 'sent student to Morocco to be tortured' while the CIA interrogated him.

The Grand Mufti of Falluja, killed after encouraging voting: Murder of man of peace inspires a voters' revolt.

Sunni cites more secret prisons as election commission says it only investigates fraud with a formal written complaint [so the complainant can be eliminated]. Therefore, any claims of this commission regarding the conduct of the elections will be useless.

It's that time again: Iraq elections: Parties to watch.

Iraq's Mosques Rock the Vote as Election Nears. Clerics' Exhortations Reflect Sunni and Shiite Muslim Fears of Disempowerment.

Is the Pentagon underreporting casualties by up to 60%? Incalculable pain. The Pentagon is underreporting the number of American soldier casualties in Iraq, say House Democrats.

Poland bargains: Poland Links Bid For US Aid to Presence in Iraq: Money Sought to Modernize Forces.

Japan also ponders: SDF mission in Iraq. And: Time for Japan to map a withdrawal strategy.

Tony Blair's former envoy to Iraq Sir Jeremy Greenstock says: War in Iraq 'may not be justified'.

Sunni politician Adnan al Duleimi: Iraq's Dr No says Yes to peace and democracy.

Paying the price for war: Alcohol misuse, divorce rates higher among returning troops.

Must Read! Gilbert Achcar writes of an al-Sadr effort to unite Iraqi forces behind an anti-occupation, antiterrorism agreement. Surprisingly, the main government bodies, Dawa and SCIRI have signed, as has a major Sunni alliance: A Pan-Iraqi Pact on Muqtada al-Sadr's Initiative. Achcar has also sent around the following aphorism from a Le Monde correspondent: Is it possible to redefine the word “torture” in order better to practice it? Of course it is, and it is even worthy of a democracy, provided the word “democracy” is also redefined.

For the Iraqi Press Club, secretly established by the US, "paid membership" doesn't mean that members pay dues, but that the US pays the members: Probe into Iraq coverage widens. Of course, like everything else, "the US Military are investigating."

The brothers of the four Christian Peacemaker Teams hostages were investigating Iraqi government abuses. Just who has kidnapped them, and why? Brothers: Hostages were gathering evidence of abuse in Iraq. See also this explanation of what CPT stands for: Not Even to Save Our Lives.

NATO, accomplice to torture: Nato satisfied with US 'rendition' answers. Accepting the criminal's assurances! European governments made sure not to ask questions of the US which might lead to embarrassing answers.

The new Europe of so closely resembles the old Soviet empire: Poland was main CIA detention base in Europe: HRW.

Winning friends around the world: Treat Us Like Human Beings, Saudi Reporter Tells US Ambassador.

“One of the employees told my colleague and me while we were waiting in line to enter the embassy grounds, ‘The animals go back,’ referring to Saudi citizens,” Al-Zubaidi said. “Thank you Mr. Ambassador. We do not want your visa,” he said, before he ripped the papers in two. “I can do my business elsewhere. I can go to Europe; I do not need to go to the US.”

Must Read! Naomi Klein reminds us that, long before Iraq, torture was as American as apple pie: 'Never Before!' Our Amnesiac Torture Debate.

Apparently forgetting everything they once knew about US cold war misadventures, a startling number have begun to subscribe to an antihistorical narrative in which the idea of torturing prisoners first occurred to US officials on September 11, 2001, at which point the interrogation methods used in Guantánamo apparently emerged, fully formed, from the sadistic recesses of Dick Cheney's and Donald Rumsfeld's brains. Up until that moment, we are told, America fought its enemies while keeping its humanity intact....
Other cultures deal with a legacy of torture by declaring "Never again!" Why do so many Americans insist on dealing with the current torture crisis by crying "Never Before"? I suspect it has to do with a sincere desire to convey the seriousness of this Administration's crimes. And the Bush Administration's open embrace of torture is indeed unprecedented--but let's be clear about what is unprecedented about it: not the torture but the openness.... By daring to torture unapologetically and out in the open, Bush has robbed everyone of plausible deniability.
For those nervously wondering if it is time to start using alarmist words like totalitarianism, this shift is of huge significance. When torture is covertly practiced but officially and legally repudiated, there is still the hope that if atrocities are exposed, justice could prevail. When torture is pseudo-legal and when those responsible merely deny that it is torture, what dies is what Hannah Arendt called "the juridical person in man"; soon enough, victims no longer bother to search for justice, so sure are they of the futility (and danger) of that quest. This impunity is a mass version of what happens inside the torture chamber, when prisoners are told they can scream all they want because no one can hear them and no one is going to save them.

Women Seek Rights Pledge From Politicians. Campaign group encourages future lawmakers to commit themselves to legislation that preserves women’s constitutional rights.

The Iraqi Pledge campaign was conceived by 12 women leaders who are concerned that civil rights should be upheld in future legislation.... Organisers said 60 politicians and 50 civil society and political organisations had signed the pledge to ensure that any new laws are in line with the constitution, and to make human rights a top priority.

Mahan Abedin on: Badr's spreading web.

Revealed: how Iraq's future went up in smoke as billions upon billions of Iraq's money was stolen while under the control of the US CPA. Related: Australia challenged US over $20bn of war spoils. And: The West, Quietly, is Pillaging Iraq.

When the interim government took control on June 28 last year, the Development Fund for Iraq had little more than $US3 billion left in it. The CPA had spent more than $US19 billion of Iraqi funds in 13 months.

The Spoils! Aussie companies snare $1.9bn in contracts.

The Australian paper, the Age: Baghdad street life.

Trinidad native: Iraq Communists slain in Sadr City after and election rally.

In New York and New Jersey: Critical Shortages Plague Local National Guard.

Trini became US citizen the day he died.

Another US success: In Kabul, a Stark Gulf Between Wealthy Few and the Poor.

On Friday: Iraqi Sunnis appeal for hostages' release.

In Cities Bush Cited, Progress Is Relative.

Iraq's chaos sows disillusion with ruling party. See also: Shiite coalition strained as Iraq elections near.

Progress: Iraq Set to Pump Less Oil Than Last Year.

Jonathan Steele: This faltering trial has put Saddam back in charge. His appearance in the dock is doing little to bring reconciliation or truth. It's not even certain that justice will be done.

In Britain: Lords reject torture evidence use.

Rice statements imply no change of policy. Thus, as she denies the US has ever tortured anyone, despite voluminous evidence and 90 deaths from it, her guarantees are not worth the hot air she uttered them with: Rice Fails to Clarify US View on Torture.

Why else use "rendition" but torture, or "information extraction"? Pentagon Memo on Torture-Motivated Transfer Cited. A court filing describes a classified proposal to send a detainee away for information extraction.

Above all law: US blocks ICRC access to suspects.

Bipartisan group of senators to oppose Patriot Act revision.

One growth business: Iraq gripped by advertising boom in election run-up.

Fred Kaplan: Bush's Rosy Spin on Iraq's Economy: And the pesky facts that undercut it.

Election Tensions: Allawi-Sadr War?

Elections better if no one competes, says Hakim. If you do, your a Saddamist, he says. Presumably, those who don't do as he says will be dealt with: Iraq Shiite Leader Wants Small Parties Out. Perhaps to reinforce the message, in Najaf: Allawi office attacked in Iraq .

Oil production at barely 60% of prewar levels says Financial Times: Iraq oil production on the decline.

Having a Caesarean, for those who can afford it, can save a life, by not having to drive at night: Pregnant Iraqi women fearful of Baghdad's dangerous roads.

Won't mean much with the torturers still in charge: US shifts to ban cruelty to detainees abroad.

Hundreds of families flee fighting in Ramadi.

Saddam trial witnesses tell of torture.

Florida jury offers stinging rebuke to Justice Department: US court clears professor of terrorism.

Riverbend on THE trial: Mother of All Trials.... Also recent: No Voice....

In the interest of "freedom", "In the aftermath of a joint U.S. and Iraqi attack, Hasiba is now a ghost town": Iraq minus ‘another town’.

Association of Muslim Scholars: Sunni group to abstain from Iraq poll.

Spitting in Europe's face may backfire. Italy: CIA Ruse Is Said to Have Damaged Probe in Milan: Italy Allegedly Misled on Cleric's Abduction. Germany: An innocent man's five months in CIA 'salt pit'; and: US-German relations undermined by CIA flights. And in Britain: MPs dismiss US denials as 'disingenuous' and 'beyond belief'. In response: Rice Warns Europe on Questioning U.S. Tactics. Meanwhile, the US scrambled to close the secret prisons in Europe and fly the prisoners to new torture centers: Sources Tell ABC News Top Al Qaeda Figures Held in Secret Prison: 10 of 11 High-Value terror Figures Subjected to "Enhanced Interrogation Techniques".

And in the East: E. European support waning in Iraq.

Anonymous female witness alleges torture in Iraqi prison.

Saddam trial told of 'massacre'.

Sunni Candidates in Iraq Find Enemies on All Sides.

Iraqi Vice President Ghazi al-Yawer says: Training of Iraq forces suffers 'setback' in last six months.

You know they're desperate: U.S. Official in Talks With Iraqi Insurgents, Report Says.

US detentions abuse Iraq mandate, UN official says.

"All except those held by the Ministry of Justice [including those held by Americans, he makes clear] are, technically speaking, held against the law because the Ministry of Justice is the only authority that is empowered by law to detain, to hold anybody in prison," Pace said. "Essentially none of these people have any real recourse to protection and therefore we speak ... of a total breakdown in the protection of the individual in this country.

At least publicly: Iran Won’t Talk to US About Iraq Security.

Rumors abound about Rumsfeld being replaced by: Secretary Lieberman`.

Allawi: Former PM in assassination claim.

British general faces Iraq war charge.

The poor guy! Who's he going to fire for it? Bush disturbed by paying of Iraqi newspapers. Sen. John McCain thinks buying the press in Iraq is just dandy.

Saddam's trial will not be fair, says United Nations .

Photographs From Iraq: November 19 - December 3, 2005.

Reuters: Many Iraqi voters want Americans to go home.

From NBC News: Basra, Iraq: Model city or police state? Shiite militias tied to Iran control the government.

Trevor Royle in the Sunday Herald: Iraq: The Reality... Not the Rhetoric. Iraqi police act as death squads; Sharia law returns; Oppression grips society.

The CIA's list of approved torture techniques has been leaked: The torture files. According to Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, around 90 prisoners have been murdered by the CIA using these techniques.

Al-Sistani urges religious vote, supporting United Iraqi Alliance.

Association of Muslim Scholars: Iraq Sunnis threaten Cairo deal.

Iraq Islamic Party: Sunni party calls for hostage release.

Lorcan Otway, a New York Quaker: An Open Letter to our Brothers holding Tom Fox and other CPT members in Iraq.

All they can afford, as they rob everyone blind: KBR workers in Iraq paid 50 cents an hour.

Seeing the end of the neocon era, the military tries to rehabilitate its image: U.S. to ferret out secret Iraqi jails. Will they ferret out secret CIA jails? Will they arrest the torturers at Guantanamo?

Heather Wokusch writes of the incipient production sharing agreements to steal Iraqi oil for US companies: Mission Accomplished: Big Oil’s Occupation of Iraq. See the Platform report: Crude Designs - The rip-off of Iraq's Oil Wealths.

At least in fantasy: Bush adopts British colonial model for Iraq

Moqtada al-Sadr says go: Shi´ite leader urges pullout.

What more needs to be said about this war? Military Defends Use of White Phosphorus, as Pentagon Chief Hits 'NY Times'.

This is precious. The White House feigns ignorance. "We're shocked! Shocked!" White House wants answers on planted Iraq stories.

Coalition of the bribed shrinks further: Two U.S. allies leaving Iraq, more may go.

A "free press" cost a lot: US plants propaganda to tout democracy in Iraq. More details: US military pays Iraqis for positive news stories on war.

Militiaman Denies Tie To Secret Iraq Prison: Leader of Badr Group Says U.S. Knew of Site.

Kurdish region going its own way: Kurdish Oil Deal Shocks Iraq's Political Leaders. A Norwegian company begins drilling in the north without approval from Baghdad. And: Israelis training Kurds in northern Iraq.

As a result of CPA bribery: Colonel arrested for conspiracy in Iraq. Arrest follows charges against two others in bribery, contract-rigging case.

A criminal complaint says Wheeler and others stole money from the CPA and used military transport planes to “smuggle hundreds of thousands of dollars of currency, including stolen CPA funds, into the United States.”

Newsweek: The Case of the Secret Memo. The White House denies plans to bomb Al-Jazeera. But a warning sent out to British newspaper editors has given the controversy a fresh twist.

Some: Iraqis press for Saddam candidacy in polls. Or does this article in the Lebanese press tell us more about how the Arab world views Iraq?

Autonomy has its benefits: Kurds live in peace amid escalation of violence.

General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff: Mutiny Over Torture.

Good news for Bush: Japan to extend Iraq mission by year.

US Debate on Pullout Resonates As Troops Engage Sunnis in Talks in Ramadi.

A Kurdish leader claims: Northern Iraq Oil Revenue to be Used for the Good of Kurds, not the rest of Iraqis.

A free press: One you can either buy or bomb: U.S. Military Covertly Pays to Run Stories in Iraqi Press. Troops write articles presented as news reports. Some officers object to the practice. The operation is coordinated by the Lincoln Group, liars extraordinaire. The stories are presumably then reported by US media, allowing the government to circumvent rules forbidding them planting stories domestically.

[In their dedication to a free press:] One of the military officials said that, as part of a psychological operations campaign that has intensified over the last year, the task force also had purchased an Iraqi newspaper and taken control of a radio station, and was using them to channel pro-American messages to the Iraqi public. Neither is identified as a military mouthpiece. The official would not disclose which newspaper and radio station are under U.S. control, saying that naming them would put their employees at risk of insurgent attacks.

Sunnis Welcome US Bid to Talk With Resistance.

Iraq Fails to Deliver on Torture Probe. The article also reports: Hundreds of Sunnis have been found dead along the Iranian border, many with gunshot wounds to the head or showing signs of torture.

Jim Lobe: Iraq's Armed Forces Sinking Into Sectarian Chaos .

In Iraq: So Much Oil, And So Little.

Dahr Jamail: Iraqi Hospitals Come Under Siege on a regular basis.

Protest, Resistance, and Civil War

Occupation Resistance Analysis

Thursday brutality: Fourteen Iraqi Shiites machine-gunned to death in minibus. And: Family of 11 Iraqi Shi'ites murdered.

Nine die in Iraq jailbreak gun battle.

2 pilots killed when Apache helicopters collide.

2 U.S. soldiers killed in Baghdad on Christmas.

Six Sudanese: More Arab diplomats kidnapped in Iraq.

Friday: Diplomat among 7 Sudanese abducted in Iraq.

Thursday: Iraq attacks kill seven policemen.

Who is brutalizing whom here? Troops find torture victims in Fallujah.

Tuesday: Six Iraqis shot dead in separate attacks;

US air power strikes Iraq targets daily.

In Iraq a deadly ambush leaves hanging questions`.

Torture breeds lies: U.K. Minister Lied Over CIA Flights.

Video 'shows execution of US hostage' Ronald Allen Schulz, a civilian contractor.

German hostage in Iraq is free.

Claim: Official: Al-Zarqawi mistakenly released in Iraq. Troops reportedly detained terror mastermind but didn't know his identity. How are they so sure now, months later?

Tuesday: Four U.S. Soldiers Killed in Iraq Bombing.

3 more U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq.

Iraqi group says holds 4 Iranian Shi'ites.

Saturday: Iraq Attacks Kill Four US Soldiers.

Egyptian hostage found dead in Iraq - police.

US hostage killed in Iraq.

Thursday: Dozens Killed By Baghdad Bus Bomb. About 30 killed in preliminary reports.1

Thee January 2005 crash that killed 10 Brits: Crash Hercules 'shot from ground'. This was denied at the time.

Wednesday: Gunmen kill 3 freeing suspect from Iraq hospital. US Marine killed in roadside bomb attack in Iraq. And: Blast at Baghdad Coffee Shop Kills at Least 4.

75 dead on Tuesday: Triple bombing kills 46 Iraqis.

Insurgents dismiss Iraq polls, brace for battle.

Police say 20 bodies found in western Iraq.

US security adviser captured in Iraq.

Tuesday, 27 dead in one attack: Female suicide bombers kills scores at Baghdad police academy. Later the casualties increase: Two suicide bombers kill 36 at police academy. Other reports say 43 dead.

Monday French Engineer Kidnapped.

Security incidents in Iraq, Dec 4.

More on the decentralized structure of the resistance: Iraq's enemy within.

Saturday: 19 Iraqi troops killed in ambush.

Friday: 10 Marines killed near Falluja. 11 wounded. See also: Bush Knew 10 Marines Had Died Prior To Rose Garden Remarks, Didn’t Mention It.

Diversity a strength: Profusion of Rebel Groups Helps Them Survive in Iraq.

Masked insurgents mount show of force in Ramadi after Bush speech.

According to a new study by the Institute for Near East Policy: Iraqi insurgency strong and could get stronger.

Something's going on in Ramadi: Al-Qaeda in Iraq claims conquest of Ramadi. Or: Tensions High in Ramadi: Conflicting Reports of Fighting as Marines, Sunni Leaders Meet.

Iraq group says kills special forces "spy".

Another member of the Iraq Islamic Party murdered: Insurgents launch new Iraq assault.

Thursday: Three U.S. soldiers, four Iraqis killed.

The Association of Muslim Scholar: Group Calls for Release of Iraq Hostages.

Wednesday: Nine dead in Iraq minibus attack.

U.S. casualties in Iraq climbing again at about 3 deaths a day.

Analysis, Commentary, & Domestic Reaction

Occupation Resistance Analysis

Robert Fisk" War without end . Only justice, not bombs, can make our dangerous world a safer place.

John Dean: George W. Bush as the New Richard M. Nixon: Both Wiretapped Illegally, and Impeachably. Both Claimed That a President May Violate Congress' Laws to Protect National Security.

Madison Capital Times Editorial: Talking About Impeachment.

James Carroll thinks we may look back upon 2005 as the year of the coup: Staying the Course.

Sandy Levinson explains why Samuel Alito's ascension to the Supreme Court is so important to the White House, and it's not Roe v. Wade: Judge Alito and Executive Power.

Missy Comley Beattie: Our Family's First Christmas With an Iraq Death At The Table.

A Disassociated Press Exclusive: Just leaked White House transcript reveals contents of meeting between Bush, Cheney and the Lord God.

Cindy Sheehan: 2006: The Year the Chickenhawks Will Go Home to Roost.

Jim Lobe: Anti-Imperialists Beware – Bush Is Reading Again.

Blogs offer taste of war in Iraq.

63% in: US Dismayed Over Paid News Stories in Iraq.

James Clingman: A New Iraq or a New Orleans?

Former GOP congressman Bob Barr on how Bush will seek to avoid impeachment: Presidents all the same when scandal strikes .

The signs are everywhere that the Bush White House is busily implementing all parts of this defense strategy. It would be refreshing if it decided to clear the air and actually be honest about its post-Sept. 11 surveillance. However, that's unlikely. The problem this president faces, as did his predecessors, is that full disclosure would lead to the remedy stage. No president wants to fight that end-game.

Must Read! Noam Chomsky interviewed by Andy Clark: On the Iraq Election.

The victory of the non-violent resistance in Iraq, which compelled the occupying forces to allow elections, that's a major victory. That's one of the major triumphs of non-violent resistance that I know of.

U.S. Rep. Nick J. Rahall, D-W.VA A time to prioritize — Can we afford Iraq and America?

A Veteran's Iraq Message Upsets Army Recruiters.

Swift Boat Republicans for Lies. Using the big lie to rally support: The WMD were really there says new ad campaign: Some Conservatives Return To Old Argument.

The television commercials are attention-grabbing: Newly found Iraqi documents show that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction, including anthrax and mustard gas, and had "extensive ties" to al Qaeda. The discoveries are being covered up by those "willing to undermine support for the war on terrorism to selfishly advance their shameless political ambitions."

David Cole: What Bush Wants to Hear. Review of The Powers of War and Peace:The Constitution and Foreign Affairs After 9/11 by John Yoo.

Secret court modified wiretap requests: Intervention may have led Bush to bypass panel.

Rice authorized National Security Agency to spy on UN Security Council in run-up to war, former officials say.

Must Read! Gareth Porter: US-Shi'ite Struggle Could Spin Out of Control.

Kansas man appeals ticket over anti-war signs.

A Night With Scott Ritter – And Some Other Guy [neoconservative apologist and jackass Christopher Hitchens].

New York Times profiles Lawrence Wilkerson: From insider to Iraq war critic.

Original 'Embeds,' Three Years On, Discuss Iraq War Coverage, Then and Now.

No comment: NSA Web site says it's a violation of the 4th Amendment to spy on Americans.

Barron's editorial: Congress should consider impeaching Bush. Complete editorial: here.

Cindy Sheehan: Language of the Heart.

I fell for a tall tale: Federal agents' visit was a hoax: Student admits he lied about Mao book .

Ohio threatens to become a "show me your papers society": Bill Would Allow Arrests For No Reason In Public Place: Citizens Would Also Have To Show ID.

Robert Parry: Democracy's Battle Joined, Again.

Michael Scherer: Crypto man. After reporting on America's spying operations for 25 years, James Bamford is speaking out against Bush's FISA runaround. He says the wiretapping is illegal.

William Fisher and Jim Lobe: What to believe in the 'war on terror'?

Jalal Ghazi: U.S. Exit Strategy in Iraq: Hand Quagmire to Iran.

Now William Norman Grigg, apparently of the ultarightwing: John Birch Society says: Bring 'em Home!

Kevin Mattson: The Democrats' Message on Iraq Is Confusing--And Should Be.

Just the right man: Alito Defended Officials From Wiretap Suits.

New York Times: Mr. Cheney's Imperial Presidency.

Tom Daschle says Congress explicitly rejected the authority that the administration claims was granted to it by the war resolution of 2001: Daschle: Congress Denied Bush War Powers in US. Daschle'd article: Power We Didn't Grant.

Arlene Getz: Where’s the Outrage? Bush’s defense of his phone-spying program has disturbing echoes of arguments once used by South Africa’s apartheid regime. Why Americans should examine the parallels.

Invisit to Spain: Cindy Sheehan Says 'Dry Up Canon Fodder Supply'.

Larry Diamond: The elections in Iraq.

It’s troubling to think that the U.S. intervention in Iraq could lead to the rise of a Shiite theocracy, led by parties spawned in Iran, some of them virulently anti-American, representing views that violate basic principles of human rights. How are we going to square that with the loss of over 2,000 U.S. troops?

Robert Dreyfuss: Iraq: Game Over.

The last hope for peace in Iraq was stomped to death this week. The victory of the Shiite religious coalition in the December 15 election hands power for the next four years to a fanatical band of fundamentalist Shiite parties backed by Iran.

Joseph S Nye: Countdown to withdrawal from Iraq.

Christopher Preble and ustin Logan of the Cato Institute: If U.S. Leaves, Al-Qaeda Will Not Inherit Iraq.

For an alternate perspective, Saad N. Jawad, professor of political science at Baghdad University: Arab nationalism will surely make a comeback in Iraq.

Murtha on Iraq: 'Staying the course is not a plan'. Congressman says secret wiretaps violate Constitution.

Norman Solomon: A New Phase of Bright Spinning Lies About Iraq.

Richard Cohen says of George Bush: Trust Him With Our Rights? No..

AmericaBlog asks: So can Bush assassinate New York Times reporters?

True conservatives are mighty upset: Wiretap Furor Widens Republican Divide. While Security Camp Claims Justification, Civil Libertarians See an Intrusion on Rights.

William M. Arkin: The Pentagon Breaks the Law by spying on protestors.

Another day, another "myth" [aka: "lie"]: File the Bin Laden Phone Leak Under 'Urban Myths'.

Steven Clemons: Neocon optimism on Iraq.

Molly Ivins: Fantasy in Iraq`.

Cynthia Tucker " Bush's enthusiasm for democracy in Iraq isn't evident here. Conservatives only want secular democracy in non-Christian nations.

Conservative constitutional scholar Bruce Fein on Bush's wiretap antics: . . . unlimited?

President Bush presents a clear and present danger to the rule of law.

Gwynne Dyer: Iraq 1918-2006 RIP.

If the frontiers that define the countries of the eastern Arab world, all drawn between 1918 and 1932 by European empires and Saudi conquests, are called into question, then the world’s premier oil-producing region faces a generation of border wars. Iraq never made much sense as a country, but its destruction could have very large consequences.

John Brown, a former Foreign Service officer who resigned from the State Department over the war in Iraq: Bushprop Strikes (Out) Again.

David Ignatius on: Revolt of the Professionals in Washington, the military and intelligence officials who are disgusted by what's going on.

Salim Lone, former spokesman for the UN mission in Iraq: Despite this election, peace will continue to elude Iraq.

Robert Scheer: Iran's Victory in Iraq.

RJ Eskow: Voting Confirms: Iraq Is a Red State.

70% of: U.S. Jews disapprove of Iraq war.

Robert Dreyfuss: Negotiate Now.

Oh my God! They actually fact-checked him, for once: Bush Leaves Out the Bad News in Iraqi Poll.

Gallop Poll: Negative Attitudes on Iraq Prove Hard to Change. Half still believe US can't achieve victory in Iraq.

A recent CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll suggests that despite hitting these same points in four previous speeches around the country since Thanksgiving, Bush has not succeeded in moving public opinion on Iraq in any significant way.

James P. Pinkerton: Road map for Iraq is still unclear. President Bush may have a strategy for victory, but it's a piecemeal plan for a bigger problem.

Islamists Ride Wave of Freedom. Religious parties in the Middle East are using democracy to gain power and legitimacy.

Patrick Radden Keefe: Listening In and Naming Names: The old tricks of the National Security Agency.

Conservative Scholars Argue Bush’s Wiretapping Is An Impeachable Offense.

Bush Reprises Terrorism Theme to Battle Critics on Spying, Iraq.

One can always dream: A Time to Impeach. President Bush may find himself in deep trouble after ordering and defending illegal wiretaps of U.S. citizens -- a crime for which Richard Nixon was nearly impeached.

Barbra Streisand: Impeach Bush Now.

Richard Cohen: Enough. Let's Try 'Accountability'.

Kevin Zeese interviews Tony Benn: Opposition to Iraq war worldwide is unanimous.

Vermont governor wants troops home: Amid serious casualties, he urges pullout plan.

Eric Margolis: Bush Promises Victory in Iraq -- But For Whom.

John Nichols: Cheney's Cheerleading Falls Flat.

New York Times: Bush's fog of false choices.

San Francisco Chronicle: Who can 'win' the war for Iraq?

Washington Post: Going Too Far. And: Unauthorized Snooping.

An Indian Muslim view: Two years of American occupation of Iraq: a dismal scorecard.

Andrew Arato says the election goes to Iran, while discussing the complexity of coalition building: Election, Government Formation and the Question of Historic Compromise in Iraq.

M K Bhadrakumar , a career diplomat in the Indian Foreign Service for over 29 years: Iran wins big in Iraq's elections.

Fatih Abdulsalam: Parliament, government and salaries.

Today, our legislators and ministers are reported to be receiving massive salaries in U.S. dollars – imagine a country’s elected officials shunning the national currency.

Robin Wright: Bigger Hurdles for US In Iraq's Next Phase.

Kevin J. Barry, a retired Coast Guard captain, a former military judge and a founder and director of the National Institute of Military Justice: Congress has been AWOL on Iraq.

Aziz Huq: License To Spy.

John Prados: No Room To Spin.

Survivor of Soviet gulags Vladimir Bukovsky reflects on the cost of torture on the torturers. Of course, the torturer-in-chief will never miss a second of sleep: Torture's Long Shadow.

Today, when the White House lawyers seem preoccupied with contriving a way to stem the flow of possible lawsuits from former detainees, I strongly recommend that they think about another flood of suits, from the men and women in your armed services or the CIA agents who have been or will be engaged in CID practices. Our rich experience in Russia has shown that many will become alcoholics or drug addicts, violent criminals or, at the very least, despotic and abusive fathers and mothers....
Off we go, back to the caves.

The new same-old same-old: Bush Drops Rosy Iraq Scenarios. The speech, for those who can bear to read it: Transcript of President Bush's Remarks on Iraq.

Comments on the Spy-In-Chief. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Big Brother Bush / The president took a step toward a police state. Los Angeles Times: Bigger brother.

For the moment: GOP Ranks Breaking Over Bush's Tactics. Recent administration setbacks and scandals have sparked concern and resistance over the broad powers he has used to fight terrorism.

Two WWII Vets Spearhead Anti-Iraq Campaign.

John Murtha: Mission in Iraq needs to end soon.

Manuel Garcia, Jr.: 2005: The Year of Consequences.

Richard Reeves sees a rising tide of isolationism in recent polls: Iraq: The War is Coming Home.

[T]he most important reason for getting American troops out of Iraq as soon as possible is not what is happening on the ground there but what is happening here at home. Good or bad, successful or a disaster, the war is beginning to tear apart our country.

William S. Lind is one of those who believes that Washington has decided to leave Iraq in 2006. I don't believe it. I assume they'll somewhat reduce troop levels and step up the air war, killing many more Iraqis in mass slaughters: The art of leaving Iraq. If the House, as Lind suggests, has decided on withdrawal in anticipation of the 2006 elections, they wouldn't be staging "Victory" votes that can only provide beautiful campaign ads for opponents should they switch and vote for withdrawal.

The Asahi Shimbun Editorial: Iraq war was wrong.

In Illinois: Iraq war veteran, Army pilot Tammy Duckworth, planning Democratic bid for Congress.

Mark Morford: Fun Bits About American Torture: In many ways, the U.S. is now just as inhumane and brutal as any Third World regime. Oh well?

Gareth Porter: Victory Is...Negotiable.

Gabriel Kolko: The Decline of the American Empire: Defeated in Iraq, Bankrupt at Home, Despised Around the Globe (And That's Just the Good News).

Ali Ezzatyar Iraq's elections conceal a divorce between Kurdistan and Iraq.

Jihad el Khazen in Al-Hayat: God Have Mercy on Iraq and Its People.

The Bush administration opposes torture in Iraqi prisons and practices it around the world.

Pierre Tristam: Iraq, Ourselves: America's Own Chronicle of Its Hellish Descent.

Molly Ivins: Civility in the face of White House lies.

Most oppose immediate Iraq pullout, poll finds.

For those who think the US is beginning withdrawal, sycophant: Powell says U.S. military will remain in Iraq for years.

Bill Moyers: In The Kingdom Of The Half-Blind.

Congressional Research Service says Congress did NOT have access to the same intelligence as did the Administration: Congress as a Consumer of Intelligence Information. But they did have enough information to know something was fishy, if they chose to know.

New York Times admits it held domestic spying story for a full year.

Robert Dreyfuss details two scenarios: Iraq's Tipping Point.

Maher Osseiran: The Negotiated Exit Strategy from Iraq; at what cost?

For Bush to save face, he needs an umbrella for his redeployment. Murtha and others like him, including the anti-war movement would be used as his domestic smoke screen and would be the ones to take the fall for lack of support for the troops, while requests by his Shiite allies in Iraq for withdrawal would be the legal umbrella he actually needs.

Laith Saud: Iraq needs free institutions not elections.

He wasn't making one speech for the press: Full Text: Murtha Demands Debate on Iraq.

Scoundrel Time!` Hillary Clinton to the right of Scalia: Star-Spangled Pandering.

Howard Zinn interviewed: As Iraq votes, historian, iconoclast looks to Vietnam; Says lack of position cost Democrats in 1968.

Nobel laureate Amartya Sen: US 'Iraq 'democracy' doesn't stand a chance: Amartya Sen.

Aziz Huq of the Liberty and National Security Project of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law: America's Gulag Problem.

Victor Hansen: No Secret Rules on Torture.

Ron Elving: Bush Leaves Iraq Questions Unanswered.

Charley Reese: We'll Miss Saddam.

In Malaysia: War in Iraq a crime, say legal experts.

Another speech defending the war: Emperor Bush Speaks To His Subjects.

Salam Pax: 'A note for the future: fast-tracking democracy also means fast-tracking political apathy'. Tomorrow, Iraqis will vote in a general election, the third major poll in 11 months. Baghdad blogger Salam Pax has been filing regular dispatches to Guardian Unlimited ahead of the vote. He describes the mood in his country now that 'this time, it's for real'

John C. Gault: Has Iraq helped America's energy security?

Maureen Dowd on life in the bubble: W. Won't Read This.

James Ridgeway: Bush Fights Back: A Timeline. President hauls self out of harm's way with speech after speech after speech.

Conservative web sites gung ho on torture: Tortured (and Waterboarded and Electro-Shocked) Logic. The ConWeb learns to love U.S. torture of detainees, either by redefining it or wholeheartedly embracing it.

Helen Thomas: Good News In Iraq -- For A Price: Administration Tramples Another Value.

Campaign for Innocent Victims of Conflict: NGO calls for accurate civilian death toll.

Robert Novak says Bush knows who leaked Plame's name: Bush can settle CIA leak riddle, Novak says.

Bernard Weiner suggests Have fun and raise funds at the same time! Those Secret Torture-Prisons: A Modest Proposal.

Cindy Sheehan: Comfort Zones.

Now is the time to leave our comfort zones and make a difference. If you don't know what to do, contact me at CampCaseyMom@yahoo.com. I will give you some ideas.

Mark Blumenthal has an excellent discussion of recent polls of US attitudes on Iraq: The RT Strategies Iraq Poll.

Norman Solomon: Blurring Terrorism and Insurgency in Iraq.

Khaleej Times: Way ahead in Iraq.

Matthew Yglesias: Message Management. Democrats need to devise a unified political strategy on Iraq before Republicans box them in.

David C. Gompert of the Rand Corp thinks leaving Iraq could further US strategic interests: Leaving Iraq: What's in it for us?

E.J. Dionne points out that the wafflers are the loosers: Republicans attack 'weak' Democrats: Iraq divide swaying opinions on the Democratic Party.

Helen Thomas: If Democrats Only Had Some Courage.

Take, for example, the case of Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y. Instead of endorsing universal health care -- a topic that she knows a lot about -- Clinton is busy co-sponsoring with Sen. Robert Bennett, R-Utah, a law to bar desecration of the flag. Has anyone burned a flag lately? s

Reduced to double talk in defending torture policy.

I don't live in a bubble, says Bush.

United for Peace and Justice says enough is enough: Ending the War in Iraq, Building a Broad Movement for Peace and Justice, And Our Experience with A.N.S.W.E.R. Unfortunately, ANSWER's authoritarian, pro-dictator politics doesn't seem to be a consideration for UFPJ.

Patrick Cockburn: Iraq: the Beginning of the End. The Old Nation-State May Be Passing Away.

Hair Trigger Nation.

Anne Applebaum: Not all wars have a winner and a loser.

Chris Lehmann: Rumsfeld Guns for the Press While the Lincoln Group Spins.

Rami Khouri: Embracing The Brotherhood after their electoral success in Egypt.

Larry Diamond: Pivotal moment in Iraq.

Playing the regret game: Two NJ Congressmen regret their votes in favor of Iraq war.

Cindy Sheehan: US 'peace mom' subject of play by Dario Fo.

Newsweek: Bush in the Bubble. He has a tight circle of trust, and he likes it that way. But members of both parties are urging Bush to reach beyond the White House walls. How he governs—and how his M.O. stacks up historically.

Kanan Makiya discusses the flaws in the new Constitution that make any resolution of conflict through electoral politics extremely unlikely: Present at the Disintegration.

Alexander Cockburn: Murtha Returns to the Attack: Flays Commander-in-Chief's Claims.

Henry Porter: Into Harm's Way . By 'rendering' suspects to torturers America sinks to the moral level of Saddam. Porter reminds us that rendition was a practice long before Bush, under the Clinton regime of torture at a distance.

What is the moral difference between Saddam's behaviour and the American renditions? There is none. For the dirty secret about torture is that it is not simply to gain unreliable information but that it is a weapon of punishment and extreme terror, which is deployed in exactly the same way by America as it was by Saddam. Knowing that, imagine yourself a Muslim and then see what you think about extraordinary renditions.

Four interviews on the Iraqi elections by Eric Black of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune: Juan Cole. Phebe Marr. Robert Packer. And: Michael Barnett.

What's Iraq war good for? Fundraising, Bush shows.

Scoundrel Time! The White Flag of Surrender: GOP ad attacks Democrats' Iraq plan.

Scoundrel Time!"> Court martial date for New Zealand Iraq rebel refusing to return for a third tour of duty.

Farhad Manjoo: Should we stay or should we go? Surprisingly, a bipartisan consensus is emerging for bringing home our exhausted troops, yet President Bush clings to his chimera of total victory. Inside the escalating debate over Iraq.

John G. Scherb: Iraq and the Next 6 Weeks.

If the Democrats do not further unify their war opposition in the next six weeks, the momentum gained in stopping the Bush war machine (anyone remember "Big Mo" from the Bush 41Administration?) will be lost and the Iraq War will, in all probability, stalemate and cost more lives and money.

David MacMichael interviewed by Scott Harris: In Growing Numbers, Public Opposes Iraq War, While Most Congressional Democrats Play It 'Safe'.

Peter Baker and Robin Wright of the Washington Post: In Iraq, Bush Pushed For Deadline Democracy: Timeline Yields Constitutional Order, Not Peace.

Ted Rall questions "supporting our troops" while they are killing others: Were looking for a few good refuseniks. Do our government's poorly paid contract killers deserve our "support" for blindly following orders?

The Nation editors want the conspirators held accountable: Conspiracy to Torture.

Anthony Lewis wants a Special Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute the war crimes being committed by: The Torture Administration.

You can fool some of the people some of the time: Bush Approval Rating Rebounds to 42%.

Scoundrel Time! Arianna Huffington: What Planet is Bill Clinton Living On? Thescrew your friends and suck up to your enemies planet he's always lived on.

Bill Weinberg explains the ANSWER organization and why it is and should be so detested: The Politics of the Antiwar Movement.

David Ignatius on where all that oil money from high prices is going: Where's The Oil Money? A short answer: Dubai.

Anthony B. Robinson, a pastor of the United Church of Christ: Iraq war debate enters new phase.

Elizabeth Spiro Clark, a retired career foreign service office, claims there are no Iraqi forces; only tribal forces: What Iraqi Forces?

Eugene Robinson tries to make sense of Rice's "denials" of what everyone knows about the worlds only superpower torture nation: Many Words, Little Clarity From Rice.

Democrats in House: Bid for Prewar Iraq Files Raises Political Heat.

Richard Reeves: 'Victory in Iraq': A Strategy to Mask Defeat.

Newsday: Iraq progress report, Part 2: Bush says nation is making economic progress - but oil is just a trickle.

Cindy Sheehan goes to Britain: 'I feel I'm carrying the world on my shoulders'. After Cindy Sheehan's son died in Iraq, her protest outside Bush's Texas ranch became a symbol of opposition to the war. Duncan Campbell joins her as she brings her campaign to Britain.

Peter Grier on NewSpeak: In 'victory,' both power and peril. The word now peppers Bush's speeches on Iraq - by design.

Abeer Mishkhas on American hypocrisy: Will the Truth Come Out in the Mideast?

Manipulating the News? Or Face Transplant?

George S. Hishmeh: US at a loss over Iraq withdrawal.

Richard Cohen: Truth for the Troops.

If, as Samuel Johnson said, "patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel," then "support our troops" is very close by. It is being used to deflect criticism of the war in Iraq, or to rebut those who call for a pullout or question how incompetents seized control of the government in a coup by ideologues. In the lexicon of some, the only way to support our troops is to ensure that more of them die.

At least he'd be out of the Senate: Rummy exit expected; Lieberman eyed for job.

Scoundrel Time! Howard Dean decries those who think he wants to end the war: US Democratic chief says new strategy needed in Iraq.

Congress torn over Iraq endgame. Call to withdraw troops is splitting House Democrats - but even Republicans are putting pressure on the White House.

Jim Lobe: Arabs Unimpressed by Bush Democracy Drive.

US ally: Turkey's PM criticises Iraq invasion.

Rep. Murtha's stock rising: Anti-War Congressman Still Making News.

RAF officer says war in Iraq is unlawful.

Robert Dreyfuss sees the last chance to be the defeat of the Shia religious bloc, the United Iraqi Alliance: Iraq's Last Small Hope. See Dreyfuss' interview with former Iraqi Oil minister Aiham al-Sammarae: An Interview with Sammarae.

Iraq war 'blatant state terrorism': Nobel laureate Pinter. Read Pinter's Nobel lecture: Art, truth and politics .

Joshua Holland: Carrying the 'White Man's Burden' in Iraq. One of the many rarely spoken reasons why conservatives in Washington won't let us leave Iraq is the old notion of civilizing a primitive nation.

Only an ideology like American exceptionalism could lead so many to conclude that the only country that can bring Iraq to "modernity" is the one that spent the past 15 years bombing it "into the stone age."

Martin Walker: Iraq, Dec. 7 and WWII.

William Blum: The Anti-Empire Report: The Climax of Civilization.

Former conservative congressman Bob Barr: Accountability not a part of Iraq strategy.

Col. Daniel Smith: Iraq Strategy: Still AWOL, Still Costly.

Bob Herbert: That Black Hole Named Iraq. 'Starying the course' is like continuing to pour water into a hole in the sand at the beach, a process that gets you nowhere.

Chicago Tribune: Did Iraq export terror?

David Ignatius praises those Arab journalists truly committed to a free press: Courage In Their Coverage.

Julia Baird: Just a change of masters for Iraq press.

Permanent occupation: President Carter doubts U.S. military will ever leave Iraq.

"My belief, and it may be erroneous ... is that the top leadership in this country intends 20 years from now, 50 years from now, we'll still have a major military presence in Iraq."

Juan Cole: Dean v. Bush: "Winning" in Iraq: Or Winning Smart?

Scoundrel Time! Sen. Clinton co-sponsors anti-flag burning law.

Scoundrel Time! More McCain Attacks: Murtha ‘Sentimental,’ ‘Never Been a Big Thinker’. And: Lieberman blames Democrats for acrimony in Washington, public disapproval of Iraq. Further: Lieberman Calls For Formation Of 'War Cabinet'.

'Vanity Fair' Offers Fresh Details on Judith Miller Saga.

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Miller "had built a reputation for sleeping with her sources," had dated one of Sulzberger's best friends, Steve Ratner, "and had even, for a time, shared a vacation home with Sulzberger," whatever that means.

Jay Shaft: Iraq Vet: 'Iraq Took Away Our Innocence!'

Former war supporter, conservative Democrat: Georgia congressman calls for removal of troops from Iraq.

Cities go on record against the war: Anti-war movement gets stronger at home in US.

Sydney H. Schanberg: How Do They Deceive You? Let me count the lies—the building blocks of Bush's 'democracy'.

Michael Schwartz: Arguing about the War: The Top Ten Reasons for Staying in (Leaving) Iraq.

A Der Spiegel interview with Lawrence Wilkerson: "A Leaderless, Directionless Superpower".

Norman Solomon: Hidden in Plane Sight: US Media Dodging Air War in Iraq.

Jeremy Brecher and Brendan Smith: War Crimes Made Easy: How the Bush Administration Legalized Intelligence Deceptions, Assassinations, and Aggressive War.

William Fisher: The Bad News Is the Good News Is Fake.

Uri Avnery: The giant’s daughter and the ME.

Jonathan Rauch: The Pullout Has Begun: Every way but militarily, withdrawal from Iraq is underway .

Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal: US policies in Iraq termed a ‘fiasco’.

Insiders say administration failing at own proclaimed goals: 9/11 Report Card Criticizes Government's Anti-Terror Efforts.

Counter-Recruitment Day Sweeps US Colleges.

White House hoisted: Fighting The War With Adobe Acrobat.

Gus Stelzer: Mr. Bush, have I got an exit strategy for you.

TIME Poll: Doubts About Iraq Bring Doubts About Bush -- President’s 41% Approval Undercut by Iraq.

Willam Fisher: Will Pay For Good News.

Phillip Knightley: True lies and why Bush and Blair hate Al Jazeera.

My view is that the official account of the reason for invading Iraq is beginning to unravel and the British government wants to warn the Western media that it will not tolerate any investigations in this sensitive area

Scott Ritter: What Happened to Iraq's WMD: How politics corrupts intelligence.

Robert Parry: A Twist in the Rove-Plame Mystery.

Ron Jacobs on the rising air war: Hard Rain -- Towards a Greater Air War on Iraq?

Empire is tough: Democrats Find Iraq Alternative Is Elusive: Party's Elite Differ on How to Shift U.S. Policy

Rep. Murtha: Democrat says Bush moving towards early withdrawal of US troops in Iraq.

Washington Post: Iraq's Death Squads.

Frank Rich: All the President's Flacks.

David Swanson: Is Impeachment an Election Issue? The Campaign of Tony Trupiano.

A new poll: Arab nations deeply suspicious of US motives.

The poll, conducted in six Arab countries in October, found 78 percent of respondents thought there was more terrorism because of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, with four out of five saying the war had brought less peace to the region. Asked which countries posed the biggest threat to their nations, a majority chose Israel and the United States....
In the new poll, 69 percent of those surveyed doubted that spreading democracy was the real U.S. objective. Oil, protecting Israel, dominating the region and weakening the Muslim world were seen as U.S. goals.

Michael Schwartz: Arguing about the War: The Top Ten Reasons for Staying in (Leaving) Iraq.

And she wants to be the leader? Hillary, straw in the wind of an Iraq deal.

Interview: An author's confession -- he got the war wrong: George Packer supported Iraq invasion, but now fears spiraling civil conflict.

Richard Reeves aska: Is George Bush the Worst President -- Ever?

Justin Raimondo: Bush's 'Great Leap Forward': Our Great Helmsman is steering us toward disaster.

Colin Powell has no qualms about the war, only about how they blew it. He says Stay the Course: Powell acknowledges mistakes.

Paul Street: “To All Who Wear the Uniform”: Messianic Militarism Versus Democracy in Imperial America .

Juan Cole: How Bush Created a Theocracy in Iraq.

Tom Klammer: Interview with Iraq Veteran Against the War Tomas Young.

Robert Fisk: America slowly confronts the truth . The old media dog sniffed the air, found power was moving away from the White House, and began to drool. But Israel is still totally off limits. See also the BBC interview: Viewpoint: UK war reporter Robert Fisk.

Arnaud de Borchgrave: Victory in Iraq?

If a free Iraq means the freedom for the local Sopranos to rob the country blind, the criteria have been amply met. Even with frequent sabotage of the country's two principal pipelines, some 1.9 million barrels are pumped each day. Deducting 400,000 barrels for daily local consumption, that's $87 million a day in oil income. Or about $2.6 billion per month. Would you believe $31.3 billion a year? A staggering $62.6 billion for the past two years.
Where has it all gone? No one in the Iraqi government seems to know. Several members of Congress have asked the Pentagon and the State Department for an accounting and so far they have drawn a blank.

Robert Dreyfuss: The Insurgencies Are Winning, the one in Iraq and the one in Washington.

Democratic Lawmakers Splinter on Iraq: Many Surprised as Pelosi Calls for a Fast Pullout.

All those left wing claims for decades really are true. The Gulf of Tonkin resolution was based on a lie, and: US backed Timor invasion and silenced reporting of the massacres, ultimately resulting in 200,000 dead out of a population of 600,000.

Released this week by the independent Washington-based National Security Archive (NSA), the documents showed US officials were aware of the invasion plans nearly a year in advance. They adopted a "policy of silence" and even sought to suppress news and discussions on East Timor, including credible reports of Indonesia's massacres of Timorese civilians, according to the documents.

Monica Benderman, wife of imprisoned conscientious objector Sgt. Kevin Benderman: Freedom? What Freedom?

Don't mess with us! We don't have to answer your questions: Rice to warn Europe to back off over detainees.

Paul Krugman wonders will the corporate media swallow the administration's latest lies on Iraq, like they have so many others: Bullet Points over Baghdad.

Nir Rosen: If America Left Iraq: The case for cutting and running.

BB blames Cheney, Rove, Card, for the fact that her son doesn't have a clue what he's doing: Bush Gossip & Tonight's Ten Minutes on Air America' Majority Report.

Tom Engelhardt: How (Not) to Withdraw from Iraq.

Jonathan B. Tucker,a senior fellow at the Monterey Institute's Center for Nonproliferation Studies, on the use of White Phosphorous in Fallujah: The wrong weapon in the wrong place. The U.S. use of white phosphorus against insurgents in Iraq is immoral, counterproductive to our aims and has helped to solidify world opinion against us.

Ray Takeyh, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, in Newsday: Iraq will stabilize only if we pull out.

Why Bush is Wrong About an Iraq Timetable. TIME's Romesh Ratnesar argues that setting a deadline for withdrawal may be America's best hope for achieving a victory.

David Isenberg examines the readiness of Iraqi security forces: Fighting talk, but who's going to fight?

Ted Rall: What Lost Iraq: How ragtag insurgents beat the world's sole superpower.

Jihad el Khazen in Al-Hayat : The End is Near.

The Muslim Brotherhood has scored a big win in Egyptian parliamentary elections, despite the intervention from various places; I read that the White House was shocked by the results and has begun to review its campaign to spread freedom and democracy in the Middle East. If the US administration was truly shocked, then its dumber than I thought, although I have always believed it to be ignorant.

Maureen Dowd: The Autumn of the Patriarchy.

The impertinent Tom DeFrank reported in New York's Daily News that embattled White House aides felt "President Bush must take the reins personally" to save his presidency. Let him try, Cheney said with a sneer. Things are nowhere near dire enough for that....
It always goes this way with the cut-and-run crowd. First they start nitpicking the war, complaining about little things like the lack of armor for the troops. Then they complain that there aren't enough troops. Well, that would just require more armor that we don't have. Then they kvetch about using incendiary weapons in a city like Falluja. Vice likes the smell of white phosphorus in the morning.

H.D.S. Greenway: Bush's patriotism smear.

Why Rove may have Bush stay: If it's not settled by '08, the 'Iraq question' could split the Democratic Party.

Chairman of Joint Chiefs figures out what's wrong: Military Losing PR War.

Dan Froomkin summarizes the findings of many reporters and analysts on Wednesday's strategy speech: Fact-Checking the President.

A few editorials on the speech. Robertson County Times, TN: Nothing new on Iraq war: Three years after war began, there is still no blueprint for its ending. Mercury News: Distrust casts a pall on Bush's war plans. And: New York Times: Bush's plan: We win. Excerpt: We've seen it before: an embattled U.S. president so swathed in his inner circle that he completely loses touch with the public and wanders around among small knots of people who agree with him.

Other commentators on the speech. Thomas Oliphant: What Bush didn't say about the war. Robin Wright: President's 'Strategy for Victory' Does Not Address Problems. Peter Baker: An Offering of Detail But No New Substance. And Elizabeth Bumiller: Gaining Control in Iraq, and Regaining Support at Home.

White House calls Democrats irresponsible on Iraq for doubting them.

Rep: Murtha predicts most U.S. troops will leave Iraq within a year. While, for the one who called him a coward: Ohio congresswoman endures firestorm.

The gang that couldn't speak straight: Embedded TIME Reporter: Bush Lied In Speech Yesterday About Iraqi Security Forces.

Why Is David Frost Joining Al Jazeera, Network Bush Almost Bombed? And Why Might Nightline’s Dave Marash, Others Sign Up As Well? Freedom, Resources, Plus Massive, Somewhat Fascinating Audience.

Another article by and Stephen R. Shalom clarifying the distinction between Democratic pull back and antiwar pull out: 'Strategic Redeployment' vs. 'Out Now'.

Bush's new clothes, uhm, plan: Bush asks for patience over Iraq. Read Bush's speech: President Outlines Strategy for Victory in Iraq. Read the new: National Strategy for Victory in Iraq [pdf].

Think Progress: Rapid Response: Deconstructing the “National Strategy for Victory in Iraq”.

Matthew Rothschild on Bush's plan: Plan for Quagmire. See also his: Bush’s Bloody Strategy for Victory.

James Ridgeway: George Bush, Meet Reality: President's speech on Iraq strategy conjures a dreamworld.

Martin Sieff of UPI: Bush wants to 'Vietnamize' Iraq.

And, for the comic side: Bush Nears Admission of Errors. Notice that cute "nears".

Big news! Rep. Nancy Pelosi supports Rep. John Mutha's withdrwal resolution! House minority leader backs quick withdrawal . She also said "she believed a majority of House Democrats 'clearly supports Mr. Murtha.'"

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton still wants withdrawal after victory, just like Bush: Senator Clinton Calls for Withdrawal From Iraq to Begin in 2006 if coming elections in Iraq go well.

Norman Solomon: Colin Powell: Still Craven After All These Years. Amen.

Patrick Doherty argues that Democrats should support the Cairo process: 'No Policy' Is Bad Politics.

Not a title I ever expected to see in a mainstream paper, even from Robert Scheer: US occupation makes Hussein regime look good.

Fawaz Turki: The Coming Flame Out in Iraq.

Scott Burchill, senior lecturer in international relations at Deakin University, Australia: Iraq: the imperial solution. The US has no alternative but to maintain a tight grip on Iraq.

Analysts Foresee Bleak Road Ahead in Iraq. Army Analysts on Target in 2003 Now Foresee Bleak Road Ahead in Iraq.

In Denver: 400 protesters sound off against Bush, Iraq war.

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