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101  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Reduction of Guard Troops on: December 21, 2011, 01:52:50 AM


National Guard at border cut to about 300
Remaining troops will focus on aerial surveillance missions using helicopters and airplanes

Ross D. Franklin  /  AP file
A United States National Guard unit patrols the Arizona-Mexico border in Sasabe, Ariz., on Jan. 19, 2007. The contingent of National Guard troops working at the Mexican border will be cut from 1,200 to about 300 in the coming year.
 
 By ALICIA A. CALDWELL
 
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration will keep a reduced contingent of National Guard troops working along the Mexican border for the next year, the Defense Department said Tuesday.
Starting in January, the force of 1,200 National Guard troops at the border will be reduced to fewer than 300 at a cost of about $60 million, said Paul Stockton, assistant secretary of defense for homeland defense.
The remaining troops will shift their focus from patrolling the border on the ground looking for illegal immigrants and smugglers to aerial surveillance missions using military helicopters and airplanes equipped with high-tech radar and other gear. Exactly where those troops will fly or how many aircraft will be used has not been decided, he said.
"We are basically going from boots on the ground to boots in the air," said David Aguilar, deputy commissioner for Customs and Border Protection.
Border Patrol Chief Michael Fisher said his agency is working on identifying the "areas of greatest concern" along the border — areas that include Arizona and South Texas — and will station troops and aircraft accordingly.
President Barack Obama ordered a second round of Guard troops to the border last year, with the first of those troops arriving in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas in August 2010. President George W. Bush first ordered Guard troops to the southern from 2006 to 2008. They were supposed to be in place for about a year but Obama extended the deployment earlier this year. The smaller force is now expected to remain until the end of 2012.
Stockton said the remaining troops are "transitioning to much more effective support."


"This provides us with more flexibility in dealing with the persistent challenges posed by cross-border movement and illegal crossings," Stockton said.
According to the Government Accountability Office, the Pentagon has previously spent about $1.35 billion for the deployments under Bush and Obama.
Stockton said the Pentagon has budgeted about $60 million for the mission in 2012.
Congressional Republicans have objected to reducing the number of troops, arguing that the border isn't secure and reducing the number of people patrolling the area doesn't help security.

"If the Obama administration's goal is border security, their actions undermine their objective," said Rep. Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. "The administration's decision to draw down the National Guard troops along the U.S-Mexico border makes an already porous border worse."
Aguilar, who previously led the Border Patrol, said Tuesday there is still work to be done at the border but that successes in securing the frontier have allowed DHS to reduce the number of troops and change the mission.
In the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30 Border Patrol agents at the southern border made 327,577 arrests, the fewest since 1972. There are also more than 18,500 agents patrolling the border, the highest number in the agency's history.
When Bush first deployed the National Guard, there were just over 11,000 Border Patrol agents in the area who made more than one million arrests.

                                         P.C.
102  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Holder's use of his office in race and politics on: December 20, 2011, 04:58:33 AM
Woof,
 Holder has no problem using his office to further his political agenda.

EDITORIAL: Justice Department to blacks: We know better

ROD LAMKEY JR./THE WASHINGTON TIMES REVERSED: Former North Carolina lawmaker Stephen LaRoque, a Republican who led the drive for nonpartisan local elections, calls the decision “racial as well as partisan.”From left: Faroya Basden, Elton Williams and Tyshun Wilson work to open the True Deliverance Fellowship Center in a closed storefront shop in Kinston. The center will be a place for Christian youths to congregate in the town of nearly 23,000 people, two-thirds of whom are black.

 By THE WASHINGTON TIMES

-

The Washington Times

 Tuesday, October 27, 2009


 Black voters across the land should be offended by the Obama Justice Department. In a decision last month, the department effectively told black voters in the town of Kinston, N.C., that they are too stupid to choose their own elected officials unless the candidates are identified by party label. In doing so, the department overruled Kinston’s black voters themselves, who helped vote overwhelmingly to join most other North Carolina towns in holding nonpartisan local elections.
 
The arrogance of the Justice Department is staggering. Its violation of constitutional norms is astonishing. And its paternalism toward Kinston’s blacks is almost antebellum.
 
The issue at hand was a proposal last November to switch Kinston to a nonpartisan voting system for local elections. About 65 percent of Kinston’s 15,000 registered voters are black, meaning that blacks are registered at a higher proportion than their voting-age population of 59 percent. In last November’s elections, more than 11,000 of those 15,000 voted, with blacks voting in greater numbers than whites. By a nearly 2 to 1 margin, Kinston voted to eliminate party affiliations from local candidates’ names on election ballots. The switch to nonpartisanship won a majority in seven of the city’s nine black-majority voting precincts. In sum, nothing could be clearer than that Kinston’s black voters themselves want nonpartisan elections.
 
Yet the Justice Department ruled that nonpartisan elections somehow violate black voting rights because apparently black voters don’t know their own minds. The department ruled that unless black and white voters specifically know who the Democrat in any particular race is, the would-be Democrat might not win - and unless the would-be Democrat wins, blacks will be disenfranchised.
 
“Removing the partisan cue in municipal elections will, in all likelihood, eliminate the single factor that allows black candidates to be elected to office,” wrote Loretta King, who at the time was acting head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.
 
More blatantly, department spokesman Alejandro Miyar said only a Justice Department analysis could make “the determination of who is a ‘candidate of choice’ for any group of voters.” That’s odd. We thought voters chose their candidates by, yes, voting. They vote, and then they count. Since when did a Washington bureaucrat get to tell the voters that they voted wrong? Since when did that bureaucrat get to tell a majority of black voters in a majority black city with a disproportionately high black voting registration that those selfsame black voters can’t make their own choice unless the choice has a D by his name?
 
The Justice Department is pushing beyond all reasonable limits a constitutionally suspect provision known as Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. That section requires any jurisdiction in parts of 16 states to attain the department’s permission before making any change in voting procedures, even changes as small as moving voting machines from a school cafeteria to the school’s auditorium. Last spring, the Supreme Court stopped just short of ruling that Section 5 is unconstitutional. The high court wrote that “the Act’s preclearance requirements and its coverage formula raise serious constitutional questions,” but then decided that the case at hand did not require the justices to decide those questions.
 
In other recent cases, Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. has written that “it is a sordid business, this divvying us up by race” and that “the way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race.”
 
Back in the still-valid 1970 case of Oregon v. Mitchell, Justice Hugo Black wisely wrote that “no function is more essential to the separate and independent existence of the States and their governments than the power to determine … the nature of their own machinery for filling local public offices.”
 
Here the Justice Department is clearly in the sordid business of discriminating by both race and political party to overturn a black-majority town’s right to determine how it fills local offices. This decision should not stand. The city of Kinston should challenge it in court, and legal foundations ought to be eagerly offering to guide that challenge at no cost to the city.



                               Holder’s Hidden Agenda, cont’d . . .

November 13, 2009 10:57 A.M.

By Andrew C. McCarthy

  This summer, I theorized that Attorney General Eric Holder — and his boss — had a hidden agenda in ordering a re-investigation of the CIA for six-year-old alleged interrogation excesses that had already been scrutinized by non-partisan DOJ prosecutors who had found no basis for prosecution. The continuing investigations of Bush-era counterterrorism policies (i.e., the policies that kept us safe from more domestic terror attacks), coupled with the Holder Justice Department’s obsession to disclose classified national-defense information from that period, enable Holder to give the hard Left the “reckoning” that he and Obama promised during the 2008 campaign. It would be too politically explosive for Obama/Holder to do the dirty work of charging Bush administration officials; but as new revelations from investigations and declassifications are churned out, Leftist lawyers use them to urge European and international tribunals to bring “torture” and “war crimes” indictments. Thus, administration cooperation gives Obama’s base the reckoning it demands but Obama gets to deny responsibility for any actual prosecutions.

Today’s announcement that KSM and other top al-Qaeda terrorists will be transferred to Manhattan federal court for civilian trials neatly fits this hidden agenda. Nothing results in more disclosures of government intelligence than civilian trials. They are a banquet of information, not just at the discovery stage but in the trial process itself, where witnesses — intelligence sources — must expose themselves and their secrets.

Let’s take stock of where we are at this point. KSM and his confederates wanted to plead guilty and have their martyrs’ execution last December, when they were being handled by military commission. As I said at the time, we could and should have accommodated them. The Obama administration could still accommodate them. After all, the president has not pulled the plug on all military commissions: Holder is going to announce at least one commission trial (for Nashiri, the Cole bomber) today.

Moreover, KSM has no defense. He was under American indictment for terrorism for years before there ever was a 9/11, and he can’t help himself but brag about the atrocities he and his fellow barbarians have carried out.

So: We are now going to have a trial that never had to happen for defendants who have no defense. And when defendants have no defense for their own actions, there is only one thing for their lawyers to do: put the government on trial in hopes of getting the jury (and the media) spun up over government errors, abuses and incompetence. That is what is going to happen in the trial of KSM et al. It will be a soapbox for al-Qaeda’s case against America. Since that will be their “defense,” the defendants will demand every bit of information they can get about interrogations, renditions, secret prisons, undercover operations targeting Muslims and mosques, etc., and — depending on what judge catches the case – they are likely to be given a lot of it. The administration will be able to claim that the judge, not the administration, is responsible for the exposure of our defense secrets. And the circus will be played out for all to see — in the middle of the war. It will provide endless fodder for the transnational Left to press its case that actions taken in America’s defense are violations of international law that must be addressed by foreign courts. And the intelligence bounty will make our enemies more efficient at killing us

 
                            Black Panthers Endorse Obama
Obama also has the endorsement of the New Black Panther Party.

"Barack Obama represents 'Positive Change' for all of America.  Obama will stir the 'Melting Pot' into a better "Molten America.'"
Read The New Black Panther Party 10 Point Platform from the anti-white and virulently anti-Semitic black supremacist party that has endorsed Obama on the presidential candidate's own website.


Following criticism earlier this month of an online endorsement from the New Black Panther Party (NBPP), Obama's campaign removed the controversial organization from the presidential candidate's official website.  The NBPP had been a registered team member and blogger on Obama's "MyObama" campaign site.

But the NBPP endorsement was reposted on Obama's official website today.

"Obama is capable of stirring the 'melting pot' into a better 'molten America,'" states the NBPP endorsement posted on Obama's site.

The NBPP is a controversial black extremist party whose leaders are notorious for their racist statements and for leading anti-white activism.  Malik Zulu Shabazz, NBPP national chairman, who has given scores of speeches condemning "white men" and Jews, confirmed his organization's endorsement of Obama in a recent interview with WND.

"I think the way Obama responded to the attack on him and the attempt to sabotage his campaign shows true leadership and character.  He had a chance to denounce his pastor and he didn't fall for the bait.  He stood up and addressed real issues of racial discord," stated Shabazz.

Shabazz boasted he met Obama last March when the politician attended the 42nd anniversary of the voting rights marches in Selma, Ala.

"I have nothing but respect for Obama and for his pastor," said Shabazz, referring to Jeremiah Wright, Obama's pastor of nearly 20 years.

It is Wright's racially charged and anti-Israel remarks that were widely circulated this month, landing the presidential candidate in hot water and prompting Obama to deliver a major race speech in which he condemned Wright's comments but not the pastor himself.

Speaking to WND, Shabazz referred to Obama as a man with a "Muslim background, a man of color."

Shabazz's NBPP's official platform states "white man has kept us deaf, dumb and blind," refers to the "white racist government of America," demands black people be exempt from military service and uses the word "Jew" repeatedly in quotation marks.

Shabazz has led racially divisive protests and conferences, such as the 1998 Million Youth March in which a few thousand Harlem youths reportedly were called upon to scuffle with police officers and speakers demanded the extermination of whites in South Africa.

The NBPP chairman was quoted at a May 2007 protest against the 400-year celebration of the settlement of Jamestown, Va., stating, "When the white man came here, you should have left him to die."

He claimed Jews engaged in an "African holocaust," and he has promoted the anti-Semitic urban legend that 4,000 Israelis fled the World Trade Center just prior to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

When Shabazz was denied entry to Canada last May while trying to speak at a black action event, he blamed Jewish groups and claimed Canada "is run from Israel."

Canadian officials justified the action stating he has an "anti-Semitic" and "anti-police" record, but some reports blamed what was termed a minor criminal history for the decision to deny him entry.

He similarly blamed Jews for then-New York Mayor Rudi Giuliani's initial decision, later rescinded, against granting a permit for the Million Youth March.

The NBPP's deceased chairman, Khallid Abdul Muhammad, a former Nation of Islam leader who was once considered Louis Farrakhan's most trusted adviser, gave speeches referring to the "white man" as the "devil" and claiming that "there is a little bit of Hitler in all white people."

In a 1993 speech condemned by the U.S. Congress and Senate, Muhammad, lionized on the NBPP site, referred to Jews as "bloodsuckers," labeled the pope a "no-good cracker" and advocated the murder of white South Africans who would not leave the nation subsequent to a 24-hour warning.

All NBPP members must memorize the group's rules, such as that no party member "can have a weapon in his possession while drunk or loaded off narcotics or weed," and no member "will commit any crimes against other party members or black people at all."

The NBPP endorses Obama on its own page of the presidential candidate's official site that allows registered users to post their own blogs.

The group labels itself on Obama's site as representing "Freedom, Justice, and Peace for all of Mankind."  It links to the official NBPP website, which contains what can be arguably regarded as hate material.

The NBPP previously endorsed Obama on the presidential candidate's site, but following publicity of that endorsement, the Obama campaign removed the NBPP posting.

"It's our policy [to remove] any content generated by a group that advocates violence," explained Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor to FoxNews.com.

Before the campaign removed the party's page, Obama spokeswoman Tiffany Edwards told FoxNews.com the NBPP endorsement on Obama's website "has nothing to do with us."

"People can form their own groups," she said. "It's not something that the campaign -- it's not something that we've done."

While it appears anyone can initially sign up as a registered supporter on Obama's site, it isn't clear whether the campaign monitors the site or approves users.  There is a link on each blog page for users to report any abusers, such as those who post controversial entries, to the administrator.

Shabbazz chalked up the Obama campaign's initial removal of his NBPP endorsement from the website to "the game of politics."

"The Obama camp's move to remove our blog doesn't mean much because I understand politics.  We still completely support Obama as the best candidate."

Obama 'less biased' on Israel

Shabazz said that aside from promoting black rights, he also supports Obama because he may take what he called a "less biased" policy on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

"I have hopes he will change the U.S. government's position toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict because our position has been unwarranted bias.  Time and time again the U.S. vetoed resolutions in the U.N. Security Council condemning [Israeli] human rights violations. ... I hope he shifts policy," Shabazz said.

           .............................................................................................

        Explosive Accusations: Justice Department Lawyer Accuses Holder of Dropping Black Panther Case For Racial Reasons –
 
June 30th, 2010 (21) Posted By Pat Dollard.
 
  A former Justice Department attorney who quit his job to protest the Obama administration’s handling of the New Black Panther Party voter intimidation case is accusing Attorney General Eric Holder of dropping the charges for racially motivated reasons.
 
J. Christian Adams, now an attorney in Virginia, says he and the other Justice Department lawyers working on the case were ordered to dismiss it.
 


“I mean we were told, ‘Drop the charges against the New Black Panther Party,’” Adams told Fox News, adding that political appointees Loretta King, acting head of the civil rights division, and Steve Rosenbaum, an attorney with the division since 2003, ordered the dismissal.
 
Asked about the Justice Department’s claim that they are career attorneys, not political appointees, Adams said “obviously, that’s false.”
 
“Under the vacancy reform act, they were serving in a political capacity,” he said. “This is one of the examples of Congress not being told the truth, the American people not being told the truth about this case. It’s one of the other examples in this case where the truth simply is becoming another victim of the process.”
 
Adams claimed an unnamed political appointee said if somebody wants to bring these kinds of cases, “that’ not going to de done out of the civil rights division.”
 
Adams also accused Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez of lying under oath to Congress about the circumstances surrounding the decision to drop the probe.
 
The Justice Department has defended its move to drop the case, saying it obtained an injunction against one member to keep him away from polling stations while dismissing charges against the others “based on a careful assessment of the facts and the law.”
 
But Adams told Fox News that politics and race was at play in the dismissal.
 
“There is a pervasive hostility within the civil rights division at the Justice Department toward these sorts of cases,” Adams told Fox News’ Megyn Kelly.
 
Adams says the dismissal is a symptom of the Obama administration’s reverse racism and that the Justice Department will not pursue voting rights cases against white victims.

“In voting, that will be the case over the next few years, there’s no doubt about it,” he said.
 
In an opinion article published in the Washington Times last week, Adams said the dismissal “raises serious questions about the department’s enforcement neutrality in upcoming midterm elections and the subsequent 2012 presidential election.”
 
Justice Department spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler dismissed Adams’ accusations as a “good faith disagreement” with ulterior motives.
 
“It is not uncommon for attorneys within the department to have good faith disagreements about the appropriate course of action in a particular case, although it is regrettable when a former department attorney distorts the facts and makes baseless allegations to promote his or her agenda,” she said in a written statement.
 
In the final days of the Bush administration, three Black Panthers — Minister King Samir Shabazz, Malik Zulu Shabazz and Jerry Jackson — were charged in a civil complaint with violating the Voter Rights Act in November 2008 by using coercion, threats and intimidation at a Philadelphia polling station — with Shabazz brandishing what prosecutors called a deadly weapon.
 
The Obama administration won a default judgment in federal court in April 2009 when the Black Panthers didn’t appear in court to fight the charges. But the administration moved to dismiss the charges in May 2009. Justice attorneys said a criminal complaint, which resulted in the injunction, proceeded successfully.
 
The department “is committed to comprehensive and vigorous enforcement of both the civil and criminal provisions of federal law that prohibit voter intimidation. We continue to work with voters, communities, and local law enforcement to ensure that every American can vote free from intimidation, coercion or threats,” Schmaler said Wednesday.
 
But the Justice Department’s explanation has failed to appease the United States Commission on Civil Rights, which is probing the department’s decision, or Republican lawmakers who say the dismissal could lead to an escalation of voter intimidation.
 
The commission held a hearing in April in which Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va., who has led the charge for answers from the Justice Department, was among those testifying. The Justice Department did not provide witnesses at that hearing. Instead, Perez testified before the commission in May.
 
“At a minimum, without sufficient proof that New Black Panther Party or Malik Zulu Shabazz directed or controlled unlawful activities at the polls, or made speeches directed to immediately inciting or producing lawless action on Election Day, any attempt to bring suit against those parties based merely upon their alleged ‘approval’ or ‘endorsement’ of Minister King Samir Shabazz and Jackson’s activities would have likely failed,” he told the commission.
 
The commission has repeatedly sought information from the Justice Department, going as far as filing subpoenas. Schmaler said the department has provided 2,000 pages of information in response.
 
But Adams said in the Times article that the department ordered the attorneys “to ignore the subpoena, lawlessly placing us in an unacceptably legal limbo.”
 
Adams also says that after the dismissal, Justice Department attorneys were instructed not to bring any more cases against racial minorities under the Voting Section.

Adams told Fox News that the New Black Panther case was the “easiest I ever had at the Justice Department.
 
“It doesn’t get any easier than this,” he said. “If this doesn’t constitute voter intimidation, nothing will.”


                                                  P.C.





103  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Holder's anti gun record on: December 20, 2011, 04:15:26 AM
Woof,
 Holder's record on gun control:

Tags: holder | gun | control Eric Holder Was a Gun Control Nightmare
Friday, 21 Nov 2008 11:03 AM

By Jim Meyers

  Barack Obama’s nomination of Eric Holder for attorney general will not sit well with advocates of Second Amendment rights — Holder has consistently championed stronger gun-control measures.

As deputy attorney general in the Bill Clinton administration from 1997 to 2001, Holder “was a strong supporter of restrictive gun control,” according to The Volokh Conspiracy, a Web site that focuses on the legal system and the courts.

He advocated federal licensing of handgun owners, a three-day waiting period on handgun sales, rationing handgun sales to no more than one per month, banning possession of handguns and so-called "assault weapons" by anyone under age 21, a gun show restriction bill that would have given the federal government the power to shut down all gun shows, and national gun registration.

“He also promoted the factoid that ‘Every day that goes by, about 12, 13 more children in this country die from gun violence’ — a statistic that is true only if one counts 18-year-old gangsters who shoot each other as ‘children,’” noted the Web site, founded by law professor Alexander Volokh.

After the 9/11 attacks, Holder wrote an opinion piece for The Washington Post arguing that a new law should give "the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms a record of every firearm sale." He also said prospective gun buyers should be checked against the secret "watch lists" compiled by various government entities.

Earlier this year, Holder — who would become the first African-American attorney general — co-signed an amicus brief in support of the District of Columbia’s ban on all handguns and on the use of any firearm for self-defense in the home.

Holder also played a key role in the snatching of 6-year-old Cuban Elian Gonzalez from his Miami relatives’ home in April 2000, according to the Web site. Gonzalez was to be sent to Cuba where his father lived.

Although a photo clearly showed a federal agent pointing a gun at the man who was holding the terrified child, Holder claimed that the federal agents sent to capture Gonzalez had acted "very sensitively."

David Kopel, author of the Volokh Conspiracy report, observed: “If Mr. Holder believes that breaking down a door with a battering ram, pointing guns at children (not just Elian), and yelling ‘Get down, get down, we'll shoot’ is an example of acting ‘very sensitively,’ his judgment about the responsible use of firearms is not as acute as would be desirable for a cabinet officer who would be in charge of thousands and thousands of armed federal agents, many of them paramilitary agents with machine guns.”

                                            

                            Eric Holder: Gun GrabberBy: John Lott
                          FoxNews.com | Tuesday, January 13, 2009



  Despite a huge Democratic Senate majority, Eric Holder’s confirmation hearings are going to be difficult. He has a long record to defend. Whether it is his involvement and inconsistent statements about Bill Clinton’s pardon of fugitive financier Marc Rich’s or his pushing Clinton’s clemency of the FALN terrorists or his failure to disclose his work for troubled Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich after Blagojevich's legal problems surfaced, he faces tough questions.

But Holder’s nomination raises other questions about what President-elect Barack Obama claimed he believed during the campaign. Numerous times he promised that he supported an individual’s right to own guns and that he wouldn’t do anything to take away people’s guns.

Just last year in a brief to the Supreme Court, Holder argued that “the Second Amendment did not protect an individual right to keep and bear arms,” that it only protected government militias’ rights to guns. He claimed that the Second Amendment posed no obstacle to implementing gun bans.

I can’t find even one gun control law that Holder has opposed. On every gun control regulation he has discussed, he has been supportive, including: bans, raising the age that someone can possess a gun, registration and licensing, one-gun-a-month limit on purchases, and mandatory waiting periods.

Even more troubling, while Holder served in the Clinton Justice Department, he oversaw the background check system, but he has never been asked to explain why the system broke down so consistently while he ran it.

The constant breakdowns of "instant" background-check systems during the Clinton administration halted gun sales for hours or even days at a time, costing stores untold sales and additional costs. Even by the end of the Clinton administration, from September 1999 to December 2000, the system was down about one hour for every 16.7 hours of operation. The breakdowns often came in big blocks of time, the worst during a period covering 60 business hours during two weeks in the middle of May 2000. During his tenure, gun shows sometimes found that they couldn’t sell guns during the entire weekend that they were open.

Try running a business where you face random shutdowns and neither customers nor sellers are ever informed of how long outages are expected to last. In addition to the government-imposed fees on gun sellers and the regulatory harassment of gun sellers with no evidence that these policies have reduce crime, it is not surprising that the number of gun dealers has plummeted by over 80 percent since 1992.

The breakdown in background checks, which had been a problem for years under the Clinton administration, magically fixed itself within weeks of President Bush assuming office in 2001, and the problems have not recurred.

What few realize is the huge power that the attorney general has to make legitimate gun selling very difficult without any new laws or regulations having to be passed. This is even more important now than it was under the Clinton administration, as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms has recently moved from the Treasury Department to the Justice Department.

I always questioned Obama’s claims and argued that up until the presidential campaign his whole career had supported gun bans, but there was no lack of politicians and advisers who attested to Obama’s sincerity on the issue. Obama and his campaign constantly tried to explain away his past support for gun control as being mistakes by subordinates who had incorrectly explained his positions.

Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer, a Democrat, promised reporters last August about Obama: “He ain't going to take your gun away. He ain't ever going to take your gun away.” Joe Biden made similar statements while campaigning in places such as rural southwest Virginia. An Obama adviser, Stanford law professor Larry Lessig, said on Hugh Hewitt's national radio show last fall that "I think that he has always been an individual rights person on the Second Amendment." Another adviser, Professor Cass Sunstein at Harvard, told Time Magazine in June: "Obama has always expressed a belief that the Second Amendment guarantees a private right to bear arms." The list goes on. It was a constant theme of the campaign.

Just before the November election, the Los Angeles Times questioned the honesty of those who questioned Obama’s stand on guns, because "Obama does not oppose gun rights. He has made a point of pounding this home to rural audiences, telling them he has no intention of taking their guns away: not their shotguns, not their handguns, not anything."

There are few such issues that the Obama campaign promised over and over again during the campaign.

Holder’s nomination suggests this promise was not serious. And it also suggests that Obama won’t appoint judges who believe it either. With Appeals Courts around the country already facing Second Amendment cases and a very closely divided Supreme Court likely to rehear the issue, the judges Obama will appoint could easily reverse last year’s Supreme Court decision striking down the D.C. gun, a decision that he claims to support.

                                             P.C.




104  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Political situation in Iraq on: December 20, 2011, 04:01:24 AM
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Stay Connected
Iraqi News IRAQINEWS.COM

Iran is a friendly country, we need it, Barzani

ARBIL / IraqiNews.com: Kurdish region President Masoud Barzani described Iran as “a friendly country”, stressing the need for it, according Iranian Mehr Newe Agency. The agency added that leader of the Iranian revolution Ali Khamanei received today President Barzani. Barzani stated that “we will not forget the assistance of the Iranian people and government during the hard times passed by Iraq”. “To preserve our victory, we need Iranian assistance and guidance in this sphere”, Barzani added. Khamanei declared that “Iran will support a unified Iraq with full stability”, stressing “Iraq should be rebuilt in order to have its rightful status”. He described the peaceful coexistence among ethnic groups is “a precious opportunity” describing the present situation in Iraq “relieves Iranian republic”. He added that all Iraqi ethnic groups are ” close brothers to Iran with deep rooted relations with the Iranian people”, stressing that “bilateral relations are good and should be developed day by day”. RM 71

         Baghdad wants unilateral control of power, Masoud Barzani

ARBIL / IraqiNews.com:  Kurdish President Masoud Barzani stated today that the behavior of the Iraqi government is to have “unilateral” control, pointing out that the Regional Government aims at solving all problems withBAGHDAD .   In a conference for Kurdistan representatives abroad, held in Arbil, he declared that a delegation, headed by Premier Barham Saleh, will be sent toBAGHDAD  to discuss matters pending betweenBAGHDAD  and Arbil.   “The attitude inBAGHDAD  is to have unilateral control of power”, he added.   Barzani referred to anti-Iran PJAK and anti-Turkey PKK parties as “not taking into consideration the interests of  Kurdistan “, calling both parties “to discharge ideas gaining their rights by military means”.   “We are planning to end this war, if we succeeded then we rendered a great service to the people of Kurdistan, Iran and Turkey, otherwise, we will not be part of it”, he confirmed.   The Iranian bombardment continued for the last two months, while the Turkish shelling prevailed for its third week which led to civilian killings and material damages in homes and lands.   Local Kurdish sources said that the Turkish jet fighters are continuing bombing Iraqi villages along the borders in Qandeel mountains in Kurdistan  region.   Areas in Arbil and Duhuk are having massive Turkish aerial bombardments against possible PKK sites inside  Kurdistan , where reports said that 30 Turkish soldiers were killed.   The Turkish government announced that it will continue its attack till terminating PKK members and stop their attacks inside  Turkey . 665


                      Malikis’ government is a dictatorship – MP

BAGHDAD / IraqiNews.com: An al-Iraqiya MP described the present Iraqi government as being similar to a dictatorship, warning against the wrath of the Iraqi public for unilateral governmental decisions.   MP Khalid Abdullah al-Alwani told IraqiNews.com that “the present government , headed by Premier Nouri al-Maliki, is similar to a dictatorship, with one ruler and one party, without real partnership, just in name”.   “There are no consultations in government affairs and non-implementation of Arbil agreement”, he added.   Alwani warned against public wrath for unilateral control of government decisions.   Kurdistan president Masoud Barzani criticized Tuesday the work of the Iraqi government as “unilateral” and pointed out that the Regional Government aims at solving all problems with Baghdad. RM (TS)/SR 375


          Thoughts to withdraw from government to weaken Maliki – MP

BAGHDAD / IraqiNews.com: Al-Iraqiya bloc MP called today to think of political alternatives to amend the situation in the country which is moving to unilateral rule and party, pointing one of these alternatives is to withdraw from the government to weaken the status of Premier Nouri al-Maliki, according to a statement of his office. In a statement, as received by IraqiNews.com, MP Ahmed al-Alwani warned against the rule of one person and one party, which facilitates the return of the dictatorship, “which matter we cannot accept,” as he said. He criticized the State of Law bloc for not abiding with the agreements reached to. Alwani said that he demanded the withdrawal from the present government “in order no to be partners in future destruction of the country”. Al-Iraqiya bloc leader Iyad Alawi announced last Thursday his rejection to preside of the Higher Strategic Policies Council due to “the absence of national partnership and unilateral rule.” Kurdish leader Masoud Barzani made an initiative in September 2011 to solve the current government crisis after a delay lasted for nine months, which led to the formation of a partnership government. RM (TI)/SR Number of Reads:351

                                                   P.C.


105  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Iraqi holocaust on: December 19, 2011, 08:34:56 PM
Woof,
The Iraqi holocaust very well documented.



http://iraqshoahfiles.blogspot.com
                 
                                     P.C.
106  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq on: December 19, 2011, 08:17:31 PM
Woof,
 On a more serious note.

BAGHDAD -- Iraq's Human Rights Ministry has decided to create a center tasked with identifying the thousands of unidentified bodies found in Saddam Hussein-era mass graves in Iraq, RFE/RL's Radio Free Iraq (RFI) reports.

Human Rights Ministry spokesman Kamil Amin told RFI on September 20 that the unresolved situation has pushed the ministry to establish the special center, which will work with other ministries and health institutions to identify the remains from mass graves.

"This is a huge and very ambitious project that will need governmental and political support," Amin said. "We also asked many other countries with similar experiences for help, such as Bosnia-Herzegovina," he added.

The Hussein regime used to arbitrarily arrest, torture, and often kill and bury anyone suspected of being an opponent of the government.

Eyewitnesses in recent years have said that some people were even buried alive, especially during the 1991 revolt that took place after the Iraqi army was forced out of Kuwait.

More Than 100,000 Bodies

Some estimates put the number of bodies found in mass graves since the fall of Hussein's regime in 2003 at more than 100,000. A number of experts think there are many more thousands still to be uncovered.

Salah Muhammad, 25, is married and has three children. He told RFI that he has wondered where his father is since 1991, when he was taken away from his family.

Muhammad said he has been told by Iraqi officials that his father was executed and buried in one of the Hussein-era mass graves that are systematically uncovered several times a year.

Muhammad said he remembers the day when security agents entered their house by force and took away his father, who was a teacher, accusing him of being a member of the banned Al-Dawah party.

"I was still a child at that time," he told RFI, "but to this day, I am unable to forget this scene of those men dragging my father away, forcing him into a car. This was the last time I saw him," he said with tears in his eyes.

Muhammad said he searches everywhere for his father, including in every new mass grave that is discovered. But he said this is a very difficult and frustrating task.

"All the remains and bodies are lacking any ID proving who they are," he said. "How can they expect anyone to identify the missing loved ones [we are] looking for?"

Muhammad's story is one of many thousands of similar stories of Iraqis still seeking the bodies of missing relatives.

                                                                    P.C.
107  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq on: December 19, 2011, 08:09:25 PM
Woof,
 This just now coming across the wires: Iraq News: A Video of Saddam Hussein has been found showing the former dictator personally spaying Kurd's with WMD. In a related story the Left would rather he still be in control in Iraq.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=KkOtGP1qWgE

                                         P.C.
108  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Not everybody is happy on: December 19, 2011, 10:46:19 AM
ABOUT IRAQI NEWS
WRITE FOR IRAQI NEWS
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Demo in north Iraq’s Tal-Afar city demanding resignation of commanders

NINEWA / IraqiNews.com: Hundreds of citizen took to the streets of Tal-Afar city of northern Iraq’s Ninewa Province on Sunday, demanding the resignation of the Commanders of Army and Police in the city, due to the deterioration of the security conditions in their city, a Ninewa security source reported. “Hundreds of citizens have launched a demonstration on Sunday morning close to the Mayoralty building of Tal-Afar city, 60 km to the west of Mosul, chanting slogans demanding the resignation of the Commander of the Iraqi Army’s 10th Brigade and the Director of Tal-Afar Police, due to the deterioration of the security situation in the city,” the Security source told IraqiNews.com news agency. Tal-Afar city had witnessed last week 2 booby-trapped car explosions in al-Kifah district in the city, killing 3 persons and wounding 32 others, all civilians, whilst the city had witnessed another incident of killing 2 Iraqi soldiers by armed men on a checkpoint in al-Bawary district of the city. Mosul, the center of Ninewa Province, is 405 km to the north of Baghdad.

                                                          P.C.
109  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / No shortage of cash on: December 19, 2011, 10:41:06 AM
Woof,

 URGENT: Southern Iraq’s Basra Province’s petrodollar revenues exceed one trillion and 131 billion Iraqi dinars

BASRA / IraqiNews.com: The Petrodollar revenues of southern Iraq ’s Basra Province for the year 2011 has reached one trillion (t) and 131 billion (b) Iraqi dinars (US$1.009 billions (b) approx.), according to a Basra Province Council’s source on Thursday.

                                            P.C.
110  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Iraqis that helped America, left to die. on: December 19, 2011, 10:02:41 AM
Woof,
 No where to go.

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2011/12/20111215164220357796.html

                               P.C.
111  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / How to start a bloodbath 101 on: December 19, 2011, 09:06:14 AM
Woof,
 Let the slaughter begin.

http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/316340

                                     P.C.
112  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Iraqi citizens polled on: December 19, 2011, 08:48:45 AM
Woof,
 Latest poll taken of what Iraqi citizens think.

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/73-iraqis-iran-likely-act-aggressively-when-us-troops-leave
                                          P,C,
113  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / My words/my thoughts on: December 19, 2011, 05:04:35 AM
Woof,
 I want to make sure all of what I actually said, stays with JDN's continued chirping, color commentary, and hysterics in his last five post's. He's become obsessed I'm afraid and continues to repeat himself over and over, even after I already answered him, and now that I no longer address him directly, he answers other people's post's and uses that as a way to ascribe things to me that I never said or thought. For some reason he thinks because I'm still posting on this thread, even without mentioning his name in those post's or directing a post to him, that I'm still engaging him personally. I'm not, but I'm also not going to let him distort what I said. So here is what I said and my answer to his original comment. Anything else are his words and thoughts, completely made up in his head, not mine.

Woof,
 
 I said way back when, that we would give them a chance at a free society and in the end we would just walk away from it and leave them to their own designs. I also said that they didn't have a chance in hell of keeping it free after we left. I'm glad Saddam is gone, I'm glad we killed a lot of terrorist fighters there. I feel sorry for the Iraqi people that do want freedom. We should have done it like we did Japan, but there were too many people invested in it's failure back here at home to have had that kind of success. It takes commitment to do things right, unfortunately our News Media and Press are committed to an ideology that breeds failures like this then they will turn their back on the massacre to come and have no shame in saying they are not to blame, much like the million or so slaughtered after we pulled out of Vietnam. It won't come as immediate as Vietnam but in time it will.

 The President was correct in not celebrating this as victory in Iraq, because it is not a victory, it's a retreat from the frontlines of the war on Western civilization by the Islamic Fascist's. We should be building more bases in Iraq, right in Iran's backyard, not shutting them down. Iraq should be paying us in oil for every cent we have spent there too. History has shown us that you must win a peace and that you cannot retreat your way to it. Retreats, most often end in massacre's. For you Liberal, so called, peace activist's out there that have facilitated this result, and are celebrating this as being the end of the Iraq war; the war there is just starting, thanks to you.
                                             P.C.


Quote
Woof JDN,
 I don't deny that, and I know those labels, just like being called Hitler or racist can be applied broadly enough to discredit any solution to any problem. Nothing happens in war without some pain but that doesn't mean the pain lasts forever. The reality is, one: Iraq should pay for it's own reconstruction because they can afford it, and it is they that benefit from it not us. I didn't say load up the ships then set fire to what's left or let's make a profit off the deal, but quite frankly we couldn't afford to do this on our own, and two: our enemies are going to grab the oil for themselves after we leave and they are going to set fire to the place. So short term name calling or long term failure. The President has picked failure.
                                                     P.C.
 
114  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq celebrate's and worry on: December 19, 2011, 04:15:57 AM
  BAGHDAD — Even as Iraqis celebrated the departure of the last American troops Sunday, the dangers left behind after nearly nine years of war were on full display. Politicians feuded along the country's potentially explosive sectarian lines and the drumbeat of deadly violence went on.
The last U.S. convoy rumbled out of Iraq across the border into Kuwait around sunrise under a shroud of secrecy to prevent attacks on the departing troops. When news reached a waking Iraqi public, there was joy at the end of a presence that many Iraqis resented as a foreign occupation.
In the northern city of Mosul, pastry shop owner Muhannad Adnan said he had a swell of orders for cakes — up to 110 from the usual 70 or so a day — as families threw parties at home. Some asked him to ice the cakes with inscriptions of "congratulations for the end of occupation," he said.

But the happiness was shot through with worries over the future.
"Nobody here wants occupation. This withdrawal marks a new stage in Iraq's history," said Karim al-Rubaie, a Shiite shopowner in the southern city of Basra. But, he said, "the politicians who are running this country are just a group of thieves."
"These politicians will lead the country into sedition and civil war. Iraq now is like a weak prey among neighboring beasts."
In the morning, a bomb hidden under a pile of trash exploded on a street of spare car parts stores in a mainly Shiite district of eastern Baghdad, killing two people and wounding four others. It was the latest in the near daily shootings and bombings — low-level but still deadly — that continue to bleed the country and that many fear will increase with the Americans gone.

 Violence is far lower than it was at the worst of the Iraq War, in 2006 and 2007, when Sunni insurgents and Shiite militias preyed on Iraqis around the country in a vicious sectarian conflict that nearly turned into complete civil war. But those armed groups still remain, and there are deep concerns whether Iraqi security forces are capable of keeping them in check without the help of U.S. troops.
Iraq's military chief of staff, Lt. Gen. Babaker Zebari said Sunday that his troops were up to the task of uprooting militant groups.
"There are only scattered terrorists hiding here and there and we are seeking intelligence information to eliminate them," Zebari said. "We are confident that there will be no danger."
Equally worrying, the resentments and bitterness between the Shiite majority and Sunni minority in this country of 31 million remain unhealed. The fear is that without the hand of American forces, the fragile attempts to get the two sides to work together could collapse and even turn to greater violence.
In an escalation of the rivalry, the main Sunni-backed political bloc on Sunday announced it was boycotting parliament to protest what they called Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's attempts to monopolize government positions — particularly those overseeing the powerful security forces. The bloc has complained of security forces' recent arrests of Sunnis that it says are "unjustified."
The Iraqiya bloc warned that it could take the further step of pulling its seven ministers out of al-Maliki's coalition government.
Story: 'Iraq War Ledger': The conflict by the numbers
"We are against the concentration of security powers in the hands of one person, that is the prime minister," said Sunni lawmaker Hamid al-Mutlaq, a member of the bloc.
Sunnis have long feared domination by the country's Shiites, who vaulted to power after the 2003 fall of Saddam Hussein at the hands of the Americans. The rivalry was exacerbated by the years of sectarian killing.
The Iraqiya bloc narrowly won the most seats in last year's parliamentary election. But its leader Ayad Allawi was unable to become prime minister, outmaneuvered by al-Maliki, who kept the premier's post after cobbling together key support from Shiite parties.
That has left al-Maliki beholden to Shiite factions, including those led by radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, whose militiamen were blamed for sectarian killings during the worst of Iraq's violence. Since forming his new government, al-Maliki has effectively controlled the Interior and Defense Ministries, which oversee the police and military, while conflicts between Sunni and Shiite politicians have delayed the appointment of permanent ministers.
Many on both sides of the sectarian divide also worry that neighboring Shiite-led powerhouse Iran will now increase its influence in their country. Al-Maliki's party and other Shiite blocs have close ties to Tehran. But even some in the Shiite public resent the idea of Iranian domination.
"I am afraid that this occupation will be replaced by indirect occupation by some neighboring countries," said Ali Rahim, a 40-year-old Shiite who works for the Electricity Ministry.

  Omar Waadalla Younis, a senior at Mosul University, said at first he was happy to hear the last Americans were gone and thought the city government should hold celebrations in the streets. Then he thought of the possible threat from Iran.
"Now that the Americans have left, Iraq is more vulnerable than before."
___
AP correspondent Bushra Juhi in Baghdad contributed to this report.


                                       P.C.
115  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Abandoning our friends on: December 18, 2011, 07:14:23 PM

NYTimes.com
 In Iraq, Abandoning Our Friends By KIRK W. JOHNSON
Published: December 15, 2011 
  U.S. Marks End to 9-Year War, Leaving an Uncertain Iraq (December 16, 2011)
Op-Ed Contributor: An Unstable, Divided Land (December 16, 2011)
Editorial: A Formal End (December 16, 2011)
 
  ON the morning of May 6, 1783, Guy Carleton, the British commander charged with winding down the occupation of America, boarded the Perseverance and sailed up the Hudson River to meet George Washington and discuss the British withdrawal. Washington was furious to learn that Carleton had sent ships to Canada filled with Americans, including freed slaves, who had sided with Britain during the revolution.

Britain knew these loyalists were seen as traitors and had no future in America. A Patriot using the pen name “Brutus” had warned in local papers: “Flee then while it is in your power” or face “the just vengeance of the collected citizens.” And so Britain honored its moral obligation to rescue them by sending hundreds of ships to the harbors of New York, Charleston and Savannah. As the historian Maya Jasanoff has recounted, approximately 30,000 were evacuated from New York to Canada within months.

Two hundred and twenty-eight years later, President Obama is wrapping up our own long and messy war, but we have no Guy Carleton in Iraq. Despite yesterday’s announcement that America’s military mission in Iraq is over, no one is acting to ensure that we protect and resettle those who stood with us.

Earlier this week, Mr. Obama spoke to troops at Fort Bragg, N.C., of the “extraordinary milestone of bringing the war in Iraq to an end.” Forgotten are his words from the campaign trail in 2007, that “interpreters, embassy workers and subcontractors are being targeted for assassination.” He added, “And yet our doors are shut. That is not how we treat our friends.”

Four years later, the Obama administration has admitted only a tiny fraction of our own loyalists, despite having eye scans, fingerprints, polygraphs and letters from soldiers and diplomats vouching for them. Instead we force them to navigate a byzantine process that now takes a year and a half or longer.

The chances for speedy resettlement of our Iraqi allies grew even worse in May after two Iraqi men were arrested in Kentucky and charged with conspiring to send weapons to jihadist groups in Iraq. These men had never worked for Americans, and they managed to enter the United States as a result of poor background checks. Nevertheless, their arrests removed any sense of urgency in the government agencies responsible for protecting our Iraqi allies.

The sorry truth is that we don’t need them anymore now that we’re leaving, and resettling refugees is not a winning campaign issue. For over a year, I have been calling on members of the Obama administration to make sure the final act of this war is not marred by betrayal. They have not listened, instead adopting a policy of wishful thinking, hoping that everything turns out for the best.

Meanwhile, the Iraqis who loyally served us are under threat. The extremist Shiite leader Moktada al-Sadr has declared the Iraqis who helped America “outcasts.” When Britain pulled out of Iraq a few years ago, there was a public execution of 17 such outcasts — their bodies dumped in the streets of Basra as a warning. Just a few weeks ago, an Iraqi interpreter for the United States Army got a knock on his door; an Iraqi policeman told him threateningly that he would soon be beheaded. Another employee, at the American base in Ramadi, is in hiding after receiving a death threat from Mr. Sadr’s militia.

It’s not the first time we’ve abandoned our allies. In 1975, President Gerald R. Ford and Henry A. Kissinger ignored the many Vietnamese who aided American troops until the final few weeks of the Vietnam War. By then, it was too late.

Although Mr. Kissinger had once claimed there was an “irreducible list” of 174,000 imperiled Vietnamese allies, the policy in the war’s frantic closing weeks was icily Darwinian: if you were strong enough to clear our embassy walls or squeeze through the gates and force your way onto a Huey, you could come along. The rest were left behind to face assassination or internment camps. The same sorry story occurred in Laos, where America abandoned tens of thousands of Hmong people who had aided them.

It wasn’t until months after the fall of Saigon, and much bloodshed, that America conducted a huge relief effort, airlifting more than 100,000 refugees to safety. Tens of thousands were processed at a military base on Guam, far away from the American mainland. President Bill Clinton used the same base to save the lives of nearly 7,000 Iraqi Kurds in 1996. But if you mention the Guam Option to anyone in Washington today, you either get a blank stare of historical amnesia or hear that “9/11 changed everything.”

And so our policy in the final weeks of this war is as simple as it is shameful: submit your paperwork and wait. If you can survive the next 18 months, maybe we’ll let you in. For the first time in five years, I’m telling Iraqis who write to me for help that they shouldn’t count on America anymore.

Moral timidity and a hapless bureaucracy have wedged our doors tightly shut and the Iraqis who remained loyal to us are weeks away from learning how little America’s word means.

Kirk W. Johnson, a former reconstruction coordinator in Iraq, founded the List Project to Resettle Iraqi Allies.

A version of this op-ed appeared in print on December 16, 2011, on page A43 of the New York edition with the headline: The Iraq We're Leaving Behind: Abandoning Our Friends.
                                                   
                                          P.C.
116  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq on: December 18, 2011, 09:54:14 AM
Woof,
 That's strange I can only hear crickets on this thread.

http://youtu.be/CQFEY9RIRJA

                               P.C.
117  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants & interesting thought pieces on: December 18, 2011, 07:11:12 AM
Woof bigdog,
 Thank you for saying so; the whole thing has me in a very frustrated and angry mood. We know what's coming; it's like watching a train wreck. I hope there's a hell because I don't think karma is going to be able to handle all the people responsible for the carnage to come. It won't be instantaneous, it will happen over time but it will rival Pol Pot's killing fields before it's over.
                              P.C. 
118  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Abandoning Iraq NYT OP ED on: December 18, 2011, 04:47:00 AM
NYTimes.com
 In Iraq, Abandoning Our Friends By KIRK W. JOHNSON
Published: December 15, 2011  
  U.S. Marks End to 9-Year War, Leaving an Uncertain Iraq (December 16, 2011)
Op-Ed Contributor: An Unstable, Divided Land (December 16, 2011)
Editorial: A Formal End (December 16, 2011)
  
  ON the morning of May 6, 1783, Guy Carleton, the British commander charged with winding down the occupation of America, boarded the Perseverance and sailed up the Hudson River to meet George Washington and discuss the British withdrawal. Washington was furious to learn that Carleton had sent ships to Canada filled with Americans, including freed slaves, who had sided with Britain during the revolution.

Britain knew these loyalists were seen as traitors and had no future in America. A Patriot using the pen name “Brutus” had warned in local papers: “Flee then while it is in your power” or face “the just vengeance of the collected citizens.” And so Britain honored its moral obligation to rescue them by sending hundreds of ships to the harbors of New York, Charleston and Savannah. As the historian Maya Jasanoff has recounted, approximately 30,000 were evacuated from New York to Canada within months.

Two hundred and twenty-eight years later, President Obama is wrapping up our own long and messy war, but we have no Guy Carleton in Iraq. Despite yesterday’s announcement that America’s military mission in Iraq is over, no one is acting to ensure that we protect and resettle those who stood with us.

Earlier this week, Mr. Obama spoke to troops at Fort Bragg, N.C., of the “extraordinary milestone of bringing the war in Iraq to an end.” Forgotten are his words from the campaign trail in 2007, that “interpreters, embassy workers and subcontractors are being targeted for assassination.” He added, “And yet our doors are shut. That is not how we treat our friends.”

Four years later, the Obama administration has admitted only a tiny fraction of our own loyalists, despite having eye scans, fingerprints, polygraphs and letters from soldiers and diplomats vouching for them. Instead we force them to navigate a byzantine process that now takes a year and a half or longer.

The chances for speedy resettlement of our Iraqi allies grew even worse in May after two Iraqi men were arrested in Kentucky and charged with conspiring to send weapons to jihadist groups in Iraq. These men had never worked for Americans, and they managed to enter the United States as a result of poor background checks. Nevertheless, their arrests removed any sense of urgency in the government agencies responsible for protecting our Iraqi allies.

The sorry truth is that we don’t need them anymore now that we’re leaving, and resettling refugees is not a winning campaign issue. For over a year, I have been calling on members of the Obama administration to make sure the final act of this war is not marred by betrayal. They have not listened, instead adopting a policy of wishful thinking, hoping that everything turns out for the best.

Meanwhile, the Iraqis who loyally served us are under threat. The extremist Shiite leader Moktada al-Sadr has declared the Iraqis who helped America “outcasts.” When Britain pulled out of Iraq a few years ago, there was a public execution of 17 such outcasts — their bodies dumped in the streets of Basra as a warning. Just a few weeks ago, an Iraqi interpreter for the United States Army got a knock on his door; an Iraqi policeman told him threateningly that he would soon be beheaded. Another employee, at the American base in Ramadi, is in hiding after receiving a death threat from Mr. Sadr’s militia.

It’s not the first time we’ve abandoned our allies. In 1975, President Gerald R. Ford and Henry A. Kissinger ignored the many Vietnamese who aided American troops until the final few weeks of the Vietnam War. By then, it was too late.

Although Mr. Kissinger had once claimed there was an “irreducible list” of 174,000 imperiled Vietnamese allies, the policy in the war’s frantic closing weeks was icily Darwinian: if you were strong enough to clear our embassy walls or squeeze through the gates and force your way onto a Huey, you could come along. The rest were left behind to face assassination or internment camps. The same sorry story occurred in Laos, where America abandoned tens of thousands of Hmong people who had aided them.

It wasn’t until months after the fall of Saigon, and much bloodshed, that America conducted a huge relief effort, airlifting more than 100,000 refugees to safety. Tens of thousands were processed at a military base on Guam, far away from the American mainland. President Bill Clinton used the same base to save the lives of nearly 7,000 Iraqi Kurds in 1996. But if you mention the Guam Option to anyone in Washington today, you either get a blank stare of historical amnesia or hear that “9/11 changed everything.”

And so our policy in the final weeks of this war is as simple as it is shameful: submit your paperwork and wait. If you can survive the next 18 months, maybe we’ll let you in. For the first time in five years, I’m telling Iraqis who write to me for help that they shouldn’t count on America anymore.

Moral timidity and a hapless bureaucracy have wedged our doors tightly shut and the Iraqis who remained loyal to us are weeks away from learning how little America’s word means.

Kirk W. Johnson, a former reconstruction coordinator in Iraq, founded the List Project to Resettle Iraqi Allies.

A version of this op-ed appeared in print on December 16, 2011, on page A43 of the New York edition with the headline: The Iraq We're Leaving Behind: Abandoning Our Friends.
                                                  
                                          P.C.
119  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq on: December 18, 2011, 04:30:07 AM
Post 7

Woof,
 Venezuela is chummy again.

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120  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / China get's chummy with Iraq on: December 18, 2011, 04:12:16 AM
 Post 6

China becomes chummy with Iraq.  
  
Iraq, China to improve relations: Iraqi PM  
 
English.news.cn   2011-07-16 15:47:31 FeedbackPrintRSS

by Zhang Ning

BAGHDAD, July 16 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al- Maliki here on Thursday said Iraq and China have the common wish to further improve the mutual relations.

The Iraqi premier, who is slated to pay a visit to China from Sunday to July 21, said in an joint interview by Xinhua and China's CCTV that Iraq and China both have long history of civilizations and the two cultures have had impact on each other.

"We'd like to renew the Silk Road," said Maliki, referring to the ancient trade route from China to Europe which had a stop in Iraq.

In the modern history, said the Iraqi leader, the two countries have seen close relations in politics and economy.

"China has become a major power in the world arena and Iraq wishes to strengthen the ties with China," said the premier.

He said China's economy is on good track and Iraq is eager to enhance the economic cooperation with China.

Chinese companies have been working in Iraq in sectors including oil, electricity and construction.

Maliki said Iraq is faced with difficulties in its reconstruction effort, as infrastructure, public service and government institutions are all in need of more fund.

"So the first step is to improve the production of crude oil, in a bid to increase revenue," said the prime minister.

In his tour to China, Maliki wishes he could bring more Chinese companies to Iraq to help with the country's reconstruction.

"These companies will find in Iraq a good investment environment. Iraq is capable of rewarding the investors with benefits," said the prime minister.

In regard to the country's government reform plan, Maliki said he has sent a letter to the national parliament, asking for the approval to decrease the number of cabinet positions.

Maliki's government has over 40 ministers, which is criticized by the public and rival groups.

"The aim of the reform is to urge the ministries to help people more efficiently and successfully," said the prime minister.

As to the security situation, Maliki said, "things have improved compared with years ago."

He said the Iraqi security forces have strengthened in training and equipment, adding "They can take responsibility without the help of foreign troops."

However, he added the Iraqi security forces still need U.S. help in training.

Editor: Wang Guanqun  
 
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121  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Cuba and the Middle East on: December 18, 2011, 03:59:55 AM
 

Carta de Cuba, la escritura de la libertad
 
 CUBA IN THE MIDDLE EAST
A BRIEF CHRONOLOGY


DOMINGO AMUCHASTEGUI (1)

Foreword By
Haim Shaked, Director
Middle East Studies Institute
July, 1999

Contents:

INTRODUCTION
CHRONOLOGY
GLOSSARY
BIBLIOGRAPHY





INTRODUCTION

After a close relationship with Middle Eastern groups and countries for forty years, Cuba enjoys today an exceptional position in the region with embassies in almost all countries, and with a wide variety of political connections within the ruling elites. Castro is engaged in a growing process of enlarging bilateral trade, financial assistance, involvement in joint ventures, and cooperation projects, as well as in diplomatic cooperation in the international system.

The context has changed over the years. While the priorities are not to channel weapons to groups within the region, there are still some specialized military assistance, training and cooperation, especially with the PLO. Yet Cuba's priorities now are to obtain investments, economic cooperation, and trade opportunities from Iran, Algeria, Lebanon, Turkey, Egypt, Iraq, and others.

For U.S. interests, the closeness of the relationship with Iraq and some of the more militant terrorist groups in the Middle East is troublesome. Can Cuba be used to carry out terrorist acts against U.S. targets? Is there any cooperation between Sadam Hussein and Castro in the development of chemical and bacteriological weapons? What remains from the close cooperation between Castro and the more militant terrorist groups in the region? These and other questions are of critical importance to the security of the United States. Cuba's proximity to the U.S., the continuous flow of immigrants from the island and the increased travel from and to Cuba should make Castro's relationships a troublesome and worrysome issue to U.S. policymakers.

The Middle East and North Africa have been extremely important to Castro's foreign policy since 1959. It remains today as a region of special priority in Castro's redesign of his foreign policy after the collapse of Cuba's alliance with the former Soviet Union. Actually, there is not one single aspect of Castro's foreign policy in which the Middle East does not become important as:

1) A region connected to Cuba's non-aligned interests and policies.

2) An area where Cuba laid the foundations for the deployment of regular military forces and the establishment of military cooperation over the last 40 years.

3) A region from where to gain knowledge/connections/influence with "liberation movements" throughout Africa and the Middle East.

4) A base for triangular operations in connection with Intelligence/subversive activities in Latin America.

5) A source of influence with Arab communities in Latin America and the Caribbean.

6) A region in which trade, loans, cooperation, and diplomatic support has become very important, especially in the 1990's.

7) After Vietnam, a virtual laboratory, in the military field, in particular since the Six Day War (1967), for updating and upgrading Cuba's military capabilities, including technological and operational capacities.

Cool A region where the Arab-Islamic states are extremely important due to their voting power within the UN system for Cuba's multilateral diplomacy.

It is within such a context that the relevance of the Middle East for Cuba's foreign policy should be understood. The following chronology is only meant to be illustrative of the depth and closesness of Cuba’s long-standing relationships with states, leaders, and groups in this troubled region.



CHRONOLOGY

1959-1963

* Relations developed with Gamal Abdel Nasser; Cuba joined the Non-Aligned Movement, sponsored by India, Yugoslavia, and Egypt. Efforts to buy weapons from Egypt failed.

* The Cuban government sent Captain José Ramón Fernández (currently vicepresident of the Cuban government) to Israel in the summer of 1959 to negotiate the purchase of light weaponry and artillery, but no agreement was reached. Instead, significant civilian assistance was granted by Israel to Cuba for more than 10 years in the field of citrus cultivation and diplomatic relations were normal until 1973.

* Raúl Castro and Che Guevara visited Cairo and established contacts with African liberation movements stationed in and supported by Cairo. Both Cuban leaders visited Gaza and expressed support for the Palestinian cause.

* Initial relations established with Baghdad under Karim Kassem. The Cuban government sent Commander William Galvez to purchase light weaponry, tanks and artillery. No agreement was reached.

* Castro established relations with the Algerian FLN through Paris and Rabat; official and public support was extended, large quantities of weapons were shipped to the FLN through Morocco (1960-1961); provided shelter, medical and educational services were provided in Cuba for wounded Algerians; political and military cooperation in the fields of counter-intelligence and intelligence were initiated. First Cuban deployment of regular military forces in support of the Algerian government against the Moroccan aggression of 1963. These forces remain to train the Algerian army for more than a year.

1964-1967

* With considerable hesitation and reluctance, Nasser cooperated with Che Guevara during his guerrilla operation in Congo-Kinshasa (former Zaire) in 1965.

* Cuba welcomed the founding of the PLO. First contacts with Palestinian FATAH between 1965 (Algiers) and 1966-67 (Damascus).

* The Tricontinental Conference was held in Havana in January, 1966 to adopt a common political strategy against colonialism, neocolonialism, and imperialism.

* Cuba sent weapons via Cairo, to the NLF in Southern Yemen. Cuban agents were sent on fact-finding missions to North and South Yemen (1967- 1968);

* Fidel Castro and other Cuban officials privately criticized in very harsh terms the shameful performance of the Egyptian leadership during the Six Day War in 1967. The war, as such, was thoroughly studied by the Cuban Armed Forces;

* Cuba and Syria developed a close alliance and supported FATAH and the Eritrean Liberation Front (ELF).

1968-1975

* Cuba continued its military and political support for FATAH after the Syrians broke with the latter, and, later on, Cuban support was granted to other Palestinian organizations (Popular and Democratic fronts).

* Cuba sent military instructors and advisors into Palestinian bases in Jordan to train Palestinian fedayeen (1968); first high-level delegation from FATAH-PLO visited Cuba (1970).

* Several missions sent to Southern Yemen to support NLF / FATAH Ismail internally and externally, both politically and militarily.

* The Soviet Union and Cuba increased military and civilian cooperation with Southern Yemen (PDRY).

* Cuba commenced political and military cooperation with Somalia's Siad Barre (1969).

* Economic cooperation began with Libya in 1974, after serious bilateral tensions between 1969 and 1973.

* Closer connections with FATAH-PLO and other Palestinian organizations were reinforced, including training of Latin American guerrillas in Lebanon;
military support included counter-intelligence and intelligence training.

* Arafat visited Cuba in 1974.

* Arab and Non-Aligned countries pressured Cuba to break relations with Israel in 1973 and sponsor U.N. Resolution on Zionism "as a form of racial discrimination."

* Cuba provided military support and personnel to Syria during the Yom Kippur War (1973-1975).

* Cuba joined with Algeria and Libya on a diplomatic/political offensive in support of Frente POLISARIO (People's Front for the Liberation of Western Sahara and Río del Oro); later on provided military cooperation , medical services, and other forms of assistance.

1976-1982

* Cuba avoided any public condemnation of Syria's military intervention in Lebanon, although privately they did so in strong terms.

* Cuba supported the so-called "Steadfastness Front" against the U.S. backed Camp David accord.

* Additional military and political support provided to the Palestinian cause; Arafat attended the 6th Non-Aligned Conference in Havana (1979).

* At this stage, significant hard currency loans (tens of million) had been facilitated by Arafat-PLO to the Cuban government under very soft terms; Cuba granted diplomatic and political support to Arafat during the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon. In the 1980s, Cuban universities were graduating hundreds of Palestinian students in various fields, especially from medical schools.

* The Aden (South Yemen) regime decided to support the Ethiopian radical officers commanded by Mengistu Haile Mariam, sending Yemeni military units in support of the latter against Somali aggression, and asking the Cubans to do the same. Cuba joined in, first with a group of officers headed by General Arnaldo Ochoa, a move that was followed later on by the deployment of large Cuban forces against the Somali invasion. Also as part of the alliance with the Aden regime, Cuba granted some small-scale support to the Dhofaris in their armed struggle against the monarchy in Oman until the late 1970s.

* As part of Cuba's alliance with Mengistu Haile Mariam's regime in Ethiopia, the Cuban leadership decided to engage in active political and military support for more than 10 years to the Liberation Movement of Southern Sudan headed by John Garang against the Arab-Muslim regime in Khartoum (until today there are no diplomatic relations between Khartoum and Havana).

* Cuba developed closer ties with Iraq in various areas (medical services, construction projects, grants and loans).

* Cuban military advisory to Iraq in different fields began in the mid 1970s (it was cancelled after the Iraq invasion of Iran in late 1980).

* Cuba cooperated with Libya in the political founding of the World MATHABA in Tripoli, to provide political support and coordinate revolutionary movements throughout the world. Cuba supported also Lybia's stand on Chad and in its support to the FRENTE POLISARIO.

* Despite its close links with Baghdad, Cuba recognized and praised the Iranian Revolution, although with no significant increase in bilateral ties. Once Iraq attacked Iran, Cuba withdrew its military advisors from Baghdad and adopted a position of official impartiality, though more sympathetic to Baghdad, due to its past relations.

* Castro granted political recognition to the revolution in Afghanistan in 1978, but internecine conflict and civil war prevented any strengthening of bilateral relations. The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 disrupted Cuba's Non-Aligned policies at a time when Castro was chairman of the NL Movement. While publicly supporting Moscow, Fidel Castro was very critical of the Soviet invasion, something that was bitterly discussed with Soviet officials.

1983-1991

* Declining economic cooperation between Cuba and Libya.

* New ties of alliance between Algeria and Libya with Morocco cut-off any further direct support from Cuba to FPOLISARIO.

* Libyan support to Latin American revolutionary movements, especially in Central America and the whole of the World MATHABA project, declined rapidly after the U.S.bombing of Tripoli in 1986; Cubans increasingly distant until MATHABA's last meeting in 1990 in Tripoli, where the termination of the Libyan project was pretty obvious for all the participants, including the Cuban delegation.

* The Palestinian Intifada increases Cuba’s support for Arafat and the PLO, both diplomatic and military.

* Cuba starts exploring other possibilities for increased diplomatic recognition and economic ties in the region, including Saudi Arabia (two Cuban ambassadors were sent for that purpose, but with no significant success); the Gulf States, Jordan, Turkey (with much better results: embassies were finally established in Kuwait, Turkey, Qatar, and Jordan); and even Israel (with no official success, but with promising inroads within the private sector and some political/religious forces).

* After the violent collapse of the Aden regime, the death of Fatah Ismail, andthe reunification with North Yemen, Cuban authorities negotiated with the government of Sanaa from which bilateral relations continued to develop, including areas of economic and political cooperation.

* After the negotiations leading to the establishment of the Palestinian National Authority, Cuban-Palestinian military cooperation was enhanced, including the areas of counter-intelligence and intelligence.

* Cuba condemned Iraq for its invasion and annexation of Kuwait, supporting the latter's sovereignty; it also condemned U.S. military operations in the Gulf and abstained from supporting the bulk of the sanctions imposed on Baghdad. A Cuban military delegation was sent to Iraq to learn and share what was considered vital information and experiences from U.S. combat operations in Kuwait and Iraq.

1992-1999

* Embassies were opened in Qatar, Turkey, Tunisia and Jordan; trade and joint ventures were developed. Diplomatic ties and trade relationships have increased discreetly with Egypt and Libya; Qatar supported Cuba in the 1999 sessions on Human Rights at Geneva.

* A high-level PLO military delegation including the new head of Intelligence paid a non-public visit to Cuba.

* Israeli firms provided capital, technology and markets to Cuba in the field of citrus cultivation and exports; religious and political delegations visited were exchanged..

* Lebanon's normalization in the 1990's allowed Cuba to reach important financial and trade agreements, including Lebanese participation in joint ventures and in establishing a branch of the Fransabank in Havana. Nabih Berri, in 1998, the Chairman of the Lebanese parliament paid a long and successful, visit to Cuba during the month of Ramadan, and more recently Adnan Kassar, president of the Fransabank and the International Chamber of Commerce paid an official visit to Havana.

* Iranian-Cuban relations have increased after several high-ranking delegations from Iran visited Cuba: the Vice-President, the Minister of Foreign Relations, the Minister of Public Health, and the Minister of Social Assistance. The Cuban Minister of Public Health visited Iran in 1998. In the last two years the number of Cuban doctors, paramedics, and medical services hired by Teheran have increased, together with additional purchases of Cuban pharmaceuticals and biotechnology products. A recent agreement (1999) was signed, establishing Cuba's assistance in setting up social security/social assistance networks in Iran.

* The recent election of Abdelaziz Bouteflika (April 1999) as President of Algeria, opens new opportunities for Cuba, given Bouteflika's close relationship with the Cuban government for more than 40 years.

* PLO leaders continue to have close relations with the Cuban leadership, having access to specialized military and intelligence training, either in Cuba or Palestinian territory, and in the sharing of intelligence.

* Cuba continues to actively undermine U.S. policies in the Middle East and North Africa in primarily three ways: a) Portraying U.S. actions and diplomacy in the region as those of an aggressor, seeking to impose hegemony by force such as the recurrent attacks on Iraq, violation of sovereign rights (no-fly zones), the perpetuation of unjustified economic sanctions to countries in the region (Iraq, Iran, Syria), open political intervention and the use of brutal force as acts of retaliation (the Bin Laden case/Yugoslavia); b) portraying the U.S. as the main obstacle to a peaceful settlement of the Israel/Palestine and the Gulf conflicts, and c) discrediting U.S. policies, especially by gaining support for Cuba's agenda at the U.N. These Anti-American views and policies are conveyed as a systematic message through a network of Cuban embassies in most countries of the region, at the U.N. and its multilateral system plus Cuban embassies and missions throughout the Western Hemisphere and other significant non-governmental political and cultural channels.


GLOSSARY

1. FLN. Front de Libération National, the political and military organization that led the war of national liberation against French colonial rule between 1954 and 1962. Ruling political party until the 1980s in Algeria.

2. PLO. Palestine Liberation Organization, founded in Cairo, in 1964, under the auspices of Egypt (then known as the United Arab Republic) to serve Nasser's manipulations of the Palestinian cause, composed mostly of conservative Palestinian intellectuals and bureaucrats serving Arab governments. An instrument of Nasser's foreign policy until the June War of 1967, when the old PLO leadership collapsed to be replaced by FATEH's leadership headed by Arafat.

3. FATEH. Acronym for Palestine National Liberation Movement, founded in 1959 by younger generations of Palestinians that had experienced the defeats of 1948 and 1956, strongly committed to a radical nationalist platform to fight for Palestine and against Arab intervention and manipulations of the Palestinian problem. Mostly an underground and not legally recognized organization until the June War in 1967; it transformed itself into the most powerful and influential party inside Palestinian and Arab politics, controlling the PLO effectively since 1969, when Arafat becomes its chairman.

4. Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. The most important branch of the Arab Nationalist Movement (known as the ANM, created in the 1950s as radical followers of Nasser). After the June War of 1967 splitting away from Nasser and focusing on building a more radical alternative within the Palestinians under the name of Popular Front, led by George Habash; a later off-spring, in 1969, was the Democratic Front led by Nayef Hawatmeh. Strongly based in Lebanon, Jordan, Yemen, and the Gulf, until 1970 heavily engaged in terrorist methods. After 1970 dropped such tactics, became more active and open across the occupied territories and southern Lebanon, adopting Marxist-Leninist ideology.

5. Frente POLISARIO. Frente Popular de Liberación del Sagía el Hamra y Río del Oro, inspired by the ANM tradition and the Algerian FLN, created to fight against the Spanish-Morrocan-Mauritinian arrangements to split the former colony of Saguía el Hamra/Río del Oro (known as Western Sahara) between the two African states. Enjoyed active support from Algeria and Libya together with a considerable number of African states until the 1980s.

6. NFL. National Front for the Liberation of South Yemen, another important, and successful, branch of the Arab Nationalist Movement. Created in 1962 in the course of the revolution in North Yemen, against the monarchy and supported by Nasser. Expanded to the south of Yemen and began armed struggle against British colonial occupation and local feudal lords (sultans and sheikhs). Broke with Nasser in 1966-1967 and finally forced the British to negotiate and evacuate Aden, followed by the defeat of the local feudal lords. Since 1965 it has had very close relations with Cuba. Main leader was Abdel Fatah Ismail. Internecine conflicts sine the late 1970s eventually led to open civil war in 1990 and the collapse of the regime, the death of Fatah Ismail, and integration with the north under the control of the government in Sanaa.

7. World MATHABA. A Libyan project from the late 1970s to promote political, financial, and military support for revolutionary movements throughout the world. Ghaddafi called on other "revolutionary governments" to support this project, which Cuba did although with extreme caution and distrust. Cuba could not refuse to join due to the fact that its major allies in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and even the Soviet Union had accepted to participate and that many of them were benefitting from Libya's abundant financial support. Although governments -like the case of Cuba- took part at the level of political deliberations and to coordinate common actions in the diplomatic and political fields, MATHABA was something else: essentially a tool in the hands of the Libyans to project their individual goals and agenda (Ghaddafi's Green Book, to reward his supporters, and to undermine his enemies). Financial and military assistance was never a collective decision, but responded for the most part to bilateral arrangements between Ghaddafi's regime and individual organizations, some of which resorted, at different stages, to terrorist methods like the IRA and ETA. Insurgencies in Central America, like the Sandinistas and others, were privileged beneficiaries along with the African National Congress, FRENTE POLISARIO, and others. Cuban leaders were always anxious to counterbalance Libyan attempts for unilateral actions, to influence Cuban allies or about Ghaddafi's hostility toward well-known Cuban allies such as Arafat. The dominant perception among Cuban leaders was that Ghaddafi posed too many unnecessary security risks the U.S. and too many complications within Cuban alliances.

8. People's Liberation Movement of Southern Sudan. The final outcome of different secessionist movements in southern Sudan during the 1960s and early 1970s (like the Anya-Nyas) fighting against Arab-Islamic control of the central government, allocation of resources, and religious, political, and ethnic intolerance.

9. Eritrean Liberation Front. The most influential Eritrean organization fighting for secession from Ethiopia in the 1960s, actively supported by the Syrian regime since 1965. Various internal divisions developed later on until the late 1970s, when a new front was built based on very different domestic and external alliances and, eventually led the Eritreans to victory. Cuba's support to Mengistu Haile Mariam's regime in 1978 meant the cessation of previous Cuban backing to the Eritrean cause.

10. PDRY. People's Democratic Republic of Yemen, official name adopted by the Southern Yemeni independent republic.

11. Gamal Abdel Nasser. A colonel in the Egyptian army, member of the Free Officers Movement formed after the defeat in 1948 at the hands of the newly-born state of Israel. Led the revolution that overthrew the monarchy in 1952. Undertook signficant economic, social, and political transformations, setting much of the basic tenets and role-model of Arab nationalsm after WWII. Co-founder of the Neutralist countries in 1956 and of the Non-Aligned Movement in 1961. Defeated by Israel in 1948, 1956, and 1967.

12. Karim Kassem. A colonel in the Iraqi army and, at the beginning, a follower of Nasser. Led the revolution against the monarchy in 1958. A rival of Nasser later on, a bloody military coup inspired and mostly led by the Arab BAATH party, a strong and influential inter-Arab nationalist movement in the Middle East, overthrew him in 1963.


BIBLIOGRAPHY

A SELECT BIBLIOGRAPHY ON CUBA'S POLICIES AND ACTIONS IN THE MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

1. Anderson, Jon Lee (1997). Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life, New York, Grove Press.

2. Baez, Luis (1996). Secreto de Generales, Ciudad de La Habana, Ediciones SI-MAR, S.A.

3. B'nai B'rith (1982). "PLO Activities in Latin America," New York, Anti-Defamation League.

4. Campbell, John C. "Soviet Policy in the Middle East." Current History Num.80 (January 1981).

5. Durch, William J. ""The Cuban Military in Africa and the Middle East: From Algeria to Angola."

Studies in Comparative Communism, Num. XI (Spring-Summer 1978).

6. The Economist Foreign Report. "Castro's First Middle East Adventure: Part II."15 March, 1978.

7. Erisman, Michael H. (1985). Cuba's International Relations: The Anatomy of a Nationalistic Foreign Policy,Boulder, Westview.

8. Eran, Oded. "Soviet Middle East Policy: 1967-1973,"Rabinovich, Itamar and Haim Shaked, eds. (1978). From June to October: The Middle East Between 1967 and 1973, New Brunswick, Transaction Books.

9. Falk, Pamela S. (1986). Cuban Foreign Policy: Caribbean Tempest, Massanchussets/Toronto,

D.C. Heath and Company.

10. Fernández, Damián (1988). Cuba's Foreign Policy in the Middle East, Boulder, Westview Press. 11. Karol, K.S. (1971). Guerrillas in Power, London, Jonathan Cape.

12. Legum, Colim and Haim Shaked, eds. (1977-1980). The Middle East Contemporary Survey. Vols. IIII, New York, Holmes and Meir.

13. "Relations Between the palestinian Terrorists and Cuba." Reprinted from  Lebanon: Selected Documents. Israeli, Raphael, ed., London, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1983.

14. Siljander, Mark. "The Palestine Liberation Organization in Central America."Mmeo., October 1983.

15. U.S. Department of State. "The Sandinistas and the Middle Eastern Radicals."Washington D.C., August 1985.

16. Viotti, Paul R. "Politics in the Yemens and the Horn of Africa: Constraints on a Super Power."Mark V. Kauppi and R. craig Nations, eds. The Soviet Union and the Middle east in the 1980s. Lexington, D.C. Heath, 1983.


[1] Mr. Amuchastegui is a research associate at the Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies and a Doctoral candidate at the School of International Studies, University of Miami. He was a professor at the Higher Institute of International Relations in Havana; Guest Professor at the Cuban National Defense College; Senior Researcher at Cuba's Center for Studies of Africa and the Middle East; and Intelligence Analyst and Head of the Organization Department at the Tricontinental Organization in the 1960s and 1970s. He traveled extensively through North Africa and the Middle East. He edited Palestine: Crisis and Revolution (Havana, 1970); Palestine: Dimensions of a Conflict Sociology and Politics in Israel Contemporary History of Asia and Africa (Four Volumes, Havana, 1984-1988), together with several other books and articles. He was a direct or indirect participant in most of the developments described herein until 1993.

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122  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The Square Axis on: December 18, 2011, 03:40:16 AM
 
 THE SQUARE AXIS: CUBA//IRAN/IRAQ/CHINA
By Manuel Cereijo

IRAN
Dr. Miyar Barruecos, El Chomi. Dr. Luis Herrera. Cuba and Iran.
Since 1990, Cuba and Iran have cooperated in the development of weapons of massive destruction. Dr. Miyar Barruecos, physician, very close to Castro, has been the force behind the throne in this alliance. Dr. Luis Herrera, from the CIGB, and one of the main scientists in the development of the CIGB and the biological weapon programs in Cuba, has been the operator, the facilitator, in the massive and huge cooperation between Cuba and Iran.

Cuba just finished, May 2001, the construction of a Biotechnology Center in Teheran. Cuba served as the source of technology, selling of equipment, and project management for the Center.

Iran has bought the best fruits of the CIGB, recombinant protein production technologies in yeast and Escherichia coli, as well as the large scale purification protocols for both soluble and insoluble proteins synthesized in or excreted by them.Iran can use these technologies to create bioweapons of massive destruction.

Iran, with Cuba's assistance, is capable of producing the bacteria known as Pseudomonas. The pathogen is not usually lethal to humans, however, produces partial paralysis for a period of time, and therefore but is an excellent battlefield weapon.

Sprayed from a single airplane flying over enemy lines, it can immobilized an entire division or incapacitate special forces hiding in rugged terrain otherwise inaccessible to regular army troops-precisely the kind of terrain in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and similar terrorist regions.

Besides Cuban scientists, at least there are about ten scientists from the Biopreparat Russian Center working in Iran. The New York Times reported in December 1998 that the Iranian government dispatched a few scientific advisors attached to the office of the presidency in Moscow to recruit former scientists from the Russian program.

In May, 1997, more than one hundred scientists from Russian laboratories, including Vector and Obolensk, attended a Biotechnology Trade Fair in Teheran. Iranians visited Vector, In Russia, a number of times, and had been actively promoting exchanges. A vial of freeze-dried powder takes up less space than a pack of cigarettes and is easy to smuggle past an inattentive security guard.

The Soviet Union spent decades building institutes and training centers in Iran and Cuba. For many years, the Soviet Union organized courses in genetic engineering and molecular biology for scientists from Cuba and Iran. Some forty scientists from both countries were trained annually.

In 1997 Russia was reported to be negotiating a lucrative deal with Iran and Cuba for the sale of cultivation equipment including fermenters, reactors, and air purifying machinery.

A report submitted by the U.S. Office of Technological Assessment to hearings at the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations in late 1995 identified 17 countries believed to possess biological weapons. Among them: Cuba and Iran.

The Cuba/Iran alliance posses a real threat to the national security of the United States.



IRAQ
Dr. Rodrigo Alvarez Cambra. The main coordinator of the alliance.

Viruses and bacteria can be obtained from more than fifteen hundred microbe banks around the world. The international scientific community depends on this network for medical research and for the exchange of information vital to the fight against disease.

According to American biowarfare experts, Iraq obtained some of its most lethal strains of anthrax from the American Type Culture Collection in Rockville, Maryland, one of the world's largest libraries of microorganisms. For $35 they also pick up strains of tularemia and Venezuelan equine encephalitis, once targeted for weaponization at Fort Detrick, United States.

Iraq was also given by the CDC the West Nile virus in the late 1980s. At the same type, the CDC gave Cuba the St. Louis encephalitis virus, very similar to the West Nile virus. Since the 1980s, Cuba and Iraq established very close relations. This was partially due to Dr. Rodrigo Alvarez Cambra, a well known orthopedic surgeon, who has operated on Hussein's knee, and also has treated other members of his family, including one of his sons.

By early 1990s, Iraq had provided Cuba with anthrax, for its further development. A report submitted by the U.S. Office of Technological Assessment to hearings at the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations in late 1995 identified seventeen countries believed to posses biological weapons-Libya, North Korea, South Korea, Iraq, Taiwan, Syria, Israel, China, Egypt, Vietnam, Laos Bulgaria, India, South Africa, Russia, and Cuba.

At the time Saddam Hussein's son-in-law, Hussein Kamel, defected in 1995, he not only denounced Iraq activities in these weapons of massive destruction, but also the close relationship of Iraq, first with the former Soviet Union, and presently with Cuba. Yury Kalinin , one of the most important persons in Russia's biological development, visited Cuba in 1990 to establish in Cuba the Biocen, a Center very similar to Russia's Biopreparat. He acknowledged at the time, the involvement of Cuba in biological weapon development. Some 25 Cuban scientists were periodically trained in the Soviet Union from 1986 to 1992.

Furthermore, Cuba has advanced tremendously in the area of nano-technology, an essential tool in the development of bio-weapons, and computer related technology. Fidel Castro Diaz Balart, Castro's oldest son, and former head of Cuba's nuclear program, visited India and Iraq to strengthen collaboration on this vital area.

Castro visited the Jawaharlal Nehru Center for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASSR) in October, 2000. Cuba and India agreed in collaboration on areas like biotechnology, tropical medicine, nano technology and computational technology.

Prof. V. Krishnan, JNCASR President said Cuba had tremendous advancement in biotechnology and nanotechnology. After his visit to India. Castro Diaz Balart visited Iraq and Iran.

The Cuba/Iraq cooperation is the most important threat faced by the United States in this fight against terrorism.



CHINA
The fall of communism has not reduced the level or amount of espionage and other serious intelligence activity conducted against the United States. The targets have not changed at all: there is still a deadly serious foreign interest, and mainly from the new China/Cuba consortium, in traditional intelligence activities such as penetrating the U.S. intelligence community, collecting classified information on U.S. military defense systems, and purloining the latest advances in the nation's science and technology sector.

There is also a growing importance in maintaining the integrity of the country;s information infrastructure. Our growing dependence on computer networks and telecommunications has made the U.S. increasingly vulnerable to possible cyber attacks against such targets as military war rooms, power plants, telephone networks, air traffic control centers and banks. China and Cuba have increased their cooperation in this area through the Bejucal base in Cuba, as well as in Wajay (near Bejucal), and Santiago de Cuba. On these bases they use technologically sophisticated equipment, as well as new intelligence methodologies that makes it more difficult, or impossible for U.S. intelligence agencies to monitor or detect.

The international terrorism threat can be divided into three general categories. Each poses a serious and distinct threat, and each has a presence already in the United States. The most important category is the state sponsored threat. This category, according to the FBI, includes the following countries: Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Lybia, Cuba, North Korea. Put simply, these nations view terrorism as a tool of foreign policy. In view of this list, we need to evaluate the recent trip made by Fidel Castro.

There are three main areas of concern for us in the new and dangerous axis formed by China and Cuba: radio frequency weapons, computer technology, missile capabilities. The problem with the Chinese Cuban rapprochement is that it is driven by by mutual hostility towards the United States.

Radio frequency weapons are a new radical class of weapons. Radio frequency weapons can utilize either high energy radio frequency (HERF), or low energy radio frequency(LERF) technology. HERF is advanced technology. It is based on concentrating large amounts of RF EM energy in within a small space, narrow frequency range, and a very short period of time. The result is an overpowering RF EM impulse capable of causing substantial damage to electronic components.

LERF utilizes relatively low energy, which is spread over a wide frequency spectrum. It can be no less effective in disrupting normal functioning of computers as HERF due to the wider range of frequencies it occupies. LERF does not require time compression neither high tech components. LERF impact on computers and computer networks could be devastating. The computer would go into a random output mode, that is, it is impossible to predict what the computer would do. A back up computer will not solve the problem either. One example of LERF use was the KGB's manipulation of the United States Embassy security system in Moscow in the late 80s.

Worldwide proliferation in RF weapons has increased dramatically in the last five years. The collapse of the Soviet Union is probably the most significant factor contributing to this increase in attention and concern about proliferation. The KGB has split into independent parts. One of them is referred to as FAPSI. It has been partially privatized. Spin-off companies have been created, with very attractive golden parachutes for the high officers. FAPSI, or its spin-off companies have been heavily involved in China and Cuba in RF technology, as well as computer technology.

China, PRC, has stolen design information on the United States most advanced thermonuclear weapons. The stolen information includes classified information on:

Seven U.S. thermonuclear warheads, including every currently deployed thermonuclear warhead in the U.S. ballistic missile arsenal
Classified design information for an enhanced radiation weapon (neutron bomb), which neither the USA , nor any other country has yet deployed
Classified information on state of the art reentry vehicles, and warheads, such as the W-88, a miniaturized, tapered warhead, which is the most sophisticated nuclear weapon the United States has ever built.
These and other classified information have been obtained in the last 20 years. However, the now presence in Cuba, with the use of the Bejucal base, and the proximity to the United States, makes the China/Cuba new axis a very serious threat to this nation. In 1993, a Cuban nuclear engineer, and high officer of the Cuban Intelligence military apparatus, was awarded a one year stance at Sandia National Labs, Albuquerque, doing research on Physical protection of nuclear facilities and materials. The officer is, since 1999, in exile in the United States.

The PRC has acquired also technology on high performance computers(HPC). HPCs are needed for the design and testing of advanced nuclear weapons. The PRC has targeted the U.S. nuclear test data for espionage collection. This can be accomplished through the facilities in Cuba.

China'new venture in Cuba will:

Enhance China's military capability
Jeopardize U.S. national security interests
Pose a direct threat to the United States
END


Manuel Cereijo
INGMCA@aol.com


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                     P.C.
 
123  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq on: December 18, 2011, 02:57:46 AM
EVERYONE:

PLEASE USE THE SUBJECT LINE IN YOUR POSTS

Thank you,
Marc
Woof,
 Oh, ye of little faith. I wasn't done yet, but thanks for the stern reminder. cheesy
                      P.C.
124  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Iran get's chummy with Iraq on: December 18, 2011, 02:50:39 AM
Post 5

Iraq’s announcement last week that U.S. forces would be required to leave Iraq under terms of the Status of Forces Agreement by 31 December blindsided Washington, and aroused predictable partisan cries of Iraqi ingratitude.

Since 2003 Washington has watched with growing alarm Iraq’s rapprochement with neighboring Iran, though any Middle Eastern specialist could have observed that a military intervention that overthrew a brutal but secularist dictatorship would allow the country’s repressed Shi’a majority an increased say in a new democratic regime, and the subsequent government would undoubtedly look more kindly on its Shi’a neighbors than Washington might like.

Proof of the changing regional dynamics was underlined on 29 October, when Iraqi Kurdistan's Regional Government President Massoud Barzani at the head of a high-powered delegation met in Tehran with Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi.

Obviously relishing the moment to discomfit the Obama administration, Salehi emphasized to journalists the Iranian government's commitment to further expand relations with neighboring countries commenting upon the two nations’ friendly relations and the two nations' historical, cultural and religious bonds and commonalities, and expressing his government’s wish to expand ties and cooperation between Iran and Iraq's Kurdistan region, particularly in the areas of economy, bilateral trade, culture, transit links, border issues and reciprocal official visits by the two countries' nations.

Barzani in turn expressed his pleasure in his visit to Iran, and thanked Iran's minister for his country’s aid and assistance to the Iraqi people in hard times before concluding that Kurdistan attaches priority to cooperation with the Islamic Republic of Iran as an important neighbor.

The following day Barzani met with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who told reporters after referring to Iran's cordial and friendly relations with different Iraqi tribes and religions that, "Iran supports progress, development and security in Iraq. It also considers Iraq's progress beneficial to the entire region."

In a not so oblique swipe at Washington’s policies Ahmadinejad stated that the world's superpowers have been weakened, people everywhere are unhappy with the global status quo and hence they should unite to set up a suitable alternate political system in the world before concluding, "Iran and Iraq should step toward development and establishment of security in the region. Iran's security is of paramount importance for Iraq. We consider insecurity along borders harmful to both countries. We are fully ready for cooperation in all areas."

Barzani’s busy schedule also included a meeting with Iranian Vice President for International Affairs Ali Saeedlou, who remarked that Iran and Kurdistan should expand their trade and economic ties through setting up a joint economic committee.

The same day that Barzani met with Ahmadinejad in Tehran Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi met with Iraqi President Jalal Talabani in Baghdad, where they discussed bilateral ties and the development of Iraq along with the current political situation in Arab and Muslim countries. Salehi has also scheduled meetings with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari.

Why can a region of Iraq have such an autonomous foreign policy? Because, the Iraqi government has allowed Iraqi Kurdistan to have oversight, to some degree, of its foreign relations without reference to Baghdad.

Despite the warm diplomacy, an interesting element was absent from both the Kurdish and Iranian remarks about cooperation – energy, more specifically, oil.

Iraqi Kurdistan exports its oil via Iraq's North Oil Company main export pipeline, which carries about 100,000 barrels of crude per day to Turkey’s deepwater port at Ceyhan on the Mediterranean. In August Iraq exported 2.189 million bpd, including 461,000 bpd from fields in the north of the country. Baghdad has ambitious plans to ramp up oil production to 12 million barrels per day within just five years and, as Iraqi Kurdistan is the most stable part of the country, it could turn the region into a magnet for foreign investment and make it a competitor to Iran, where decades of sanctions have stymied government efforts to raise production above is current level of approximately 4.5 million bpd.

If energy issues might impact growing Iranian-Kurdish relations, the attendant foreign policy issues are equally complex. Iran has persistently sought to improve relations with its neighbors, seeing it as both a way to weaken international sanctions and provide surety against any possible Israeli-U.S. military strike on its civilian nuclear facilities.

Iraqi Kurdistan is well aware that the March 2003 U.S. invasion opened up political opportunities for the region denied it by the dictatorship of former President Saddam Hussein, and will undoubtedly be loathe to overly antagonize to anger its U.S. patron by siding too closely with Tehran.

Finally, Iran has issues with the Kurdish Regional Government about reigning in the activities of the Partiya Jiyana Azad a Kurdistan, better known by the acronym PJAK, a Marxist Kurdish nationalist group responsible for numerous terrorist attacks against Iran. Turkey has a similar problem with The Kurdish Marxist Partiya Karkeren Kurdistan, or PKK, and the failure of the Kurdish Regional Government to reign in the groups recently led Turkey and Iran to agree to share military intelligence. While the Barzani administration is understandably nervous about repressing PJAK and the PKK lest they turn their guns on them, exasperation in both Ankara and Tehran is rising over the lack of concrete action and if Iran is eventually forced to choose between Turkey and Iraqi Kurdistan, there is little doubt that Iran will side with Turkey.

But at the moment, there is a warm glow in Arbil and Tehran about improving relations.

As a corollary to the flurry of diplomatic activity, Iraqi Kurdistan Prime Minister Barham Saleh on 30 October left for the U.S. for an official visit accompanied by Minister of Natural Resources Ashti Hawrami and Minister of Planning Ali Sindi, where they will meet with U.S. officials and participate in some symposiums on the Arab Spring. The representative of the Kurdistan Regional Government to the United States is Qubad Talabani, the youngest son of Iraqi president Jalal Talabani.

Beyond discussing the Arab Spring, doubtless the quartet will be pressed by eager U.S. officials to learn all about the Arbil-Tehran “thaw,” engaging in “frank and candid” discussions, to use diplomatese.

By. John C.K. Daly of Oilprice.com
  
  
                                                        P.C.
125  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Syria's plan for Iraqi oil and gas pipeline. on: December 18, 2011, 02:40:09 AM
Post 4


Syria Today | Coast to CoastHOMEPOLITICSBUSINESSFOCUSLIFEARCHIVETIME OUTCONTACTSUBSCRIPTION   January 2011 - Politics  
January 2011  
Coast to Coast

What is the "Five Seas Vision", how will it be achieved and what does it mean for Syria?

By Dania Akkad
Photos SANA

President Bashar al-Assad travelled to Bucharest in November where he met with Romanian President Traian Basescu.



Look at any regional map and you will see Syria in the middle, encircled by the numerous blue shapes that represent the Caspian, Black, Mediterranean, Red and Arabian Gulf seas. Syria's foreign policy is now being shaped by this strategic location through a concept dubbed the "Five Seas Vision", a strategy announced by President Bashar al-Assad in 2004 that seeks to use Syria's geographic position to put it at the centre of a regional energy and transportation network.

Assad, with delegations in tow, has crisscrossed the Black Sea in recent months, meeting with leaders in Ukraine, Bulgaria, Romania, Russia and Azerbaijan. Closer to home, Syria and its neighbours – Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey – are moving closer to forming a free-trade bloc.

The 11th Five-Year Plan beginning this year aims to build the roads, ports and pipelines to attract the energy Syria hopes will pass through it from its neighbours. Syria may soon serve as a pipeline route to Turkey and Europe for oil from Iraq, which plans to ramp up its production this year.

Though the Five Seas remains a nascent idea, experts say that it could eventually transform Syria, enriching its coffers as well as its international reputation. Nevertheless, making Syria a strategic hub is still a long way off, requiring two important measures that have thus far eluded the country – securing unprecedented foreign investment and achieving regional stability.

The origins
To understand Five Seas, it helps to go back seven years. In the midst of the war in Iraq and the introduction of US sanctions, Syria felt pressured and isolated.

That year, Assad became the first Syrian head of state to make an official visit to Turkey. In light of the strained relationship with the US, the president's time in Turkey sparked the idea for the Five Seas partnership, said Joshua Landis, Syria expert and director of the Centre for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma.

"I think [Assad saw Turkey as] a world that was dynamic, that branched east and west, was creative and vital," Landis said. "I'm sure he thought: 'Why shouldn't Syria get a piece of this? This is the model. We don't want to be Iran. We want to be Turkey.'"

Soon after the trip, Assad first began to publicly articulate what he dubbed his "Five Seas Vision". Looking locally and eastward for business partners meant that Syria was less reliant on the sometimes-fickle whims of western countries – a consideration that remains relevant today, as US sanctions remain in place.

Despite its name, the Five Seas, analysts said, should not be interpreted literally as a strategy designed to align Syria with countries that border nearby bodies of water. Rather, it should be taken as a symbol that Syria will no longer depend on the US and its main allies for stability, a message that many other countries – Venezuela, Brazil and Argentina, for example – have also been asserting in recent years.

Tangible moves
Beyond the symbolic message that the policy sends, Assad and other Syrian officials have made tangible progress with the Five Seas Vision since 2004. Perhaps the best example is the improvement in Turkish-Syrian relations, culminating in the start of a free-trade area and visa-free border crossing between the countries in 2007.

More recently, Syrian delegations have paid visits to several of Syria's Five Seas partners, securing a number of agreements. Syrian and Iraqi officials have agreed to build new cross-border pipelines for oil and natural gas, running from Kirkuk in Northern Iraq to Syria's port at Banias, near Tartous. A previous pipeline connecting the same cities from 2000 to 2003 generated an estimated SYP 46bn (USD 1bn) for Syria annually, before it was bombed by the US in the beginning of its war in Iraq, according to Raymond Hinnebusch, director of the Centre for Syrian Studies at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.

Secondly, a deal signed in December allows Syria to start importing natural gas from Azerbaijan this year via a pipeline running through Turkey. Currently, Syria imports all its natural gas from Egypt.

Syria and Iran also signed a free-trade agreement in the summer of 2010, though the benefits of this are questionable as trade between the two countries has historically been limited. There has, however, been an ongoing discussion about importing Iranian gas – via Iraq – to Syria. Iraqi officials have reportedly authorised plans for an Iranian pipeline running through their territory.

Transportation agreements between Syrian ports and ports in Bulgaria and Ukraine – both countries which Assad visited recently – have also been completed. Further, Ukranian President Viktor Yanukovych and Assad are scheduled to sign a free-trade agreement in February.

Benefits and challenges
Before such a plan can be successful, however, Syria must build the kind of infrastructure needed to make it a central hub. It needs new ports, railways, roads and pipelines. The five-year plan relies heavily on foreign investment for infrastructure upgrades. While Syria received SYP 69bn (USD 1.5bn) in foreign investment last year, this is far from the SYP 506bn (USD 11bn), which Abdullah al-Dardari, deputy prime minister for economic affairs, has said Syria needs annually over the next five years in order to achieve its infrastructure upgrades.

Economist Jihad Yazigi said the government plans to cover some of the infrastructure costs through the December 2010 introduction of bond sales and with funding from international institutions such as the World Bank.

Some costs may also be recouped. In addition to the increased revenue Syria could earn through charging fees for pipelines, electricity grids and boats docked at its ports, Landis said new infrastructure could also attract companies that find it too expensive to do business in other countries.

"If you can tie this all together," he said, "it jump starts all sorts of other things."

Inside Syria the opening of new markets and relations creates "huge expectations", said a source who has travelled with Assad to many of the Five Seas countries but asked not to be named.

"It's basically a huge window for choice and alternatives for Syrians [involved in business]", he said.

 
  Daily News Brief
15 December 2011

Iran signs economic agreements with Syria
SANA reported that following a meeting of the Syrian-Iranian officials in Damascus,
Reports on clashes in Homs, Hama and Dera’a
Yesterday in Homs three people were killed when armed groups targeted a bus, Syrian private daily Al-Watan reported.
Iraq prepares to send its delegation to Syria, meanwhile SNC announces its first conference in Tunisia
The Daily Star has reported that Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Malaki has announced that Iraq


                               P.C.
126  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Russia get's chummy with Iraq on: December 18, 2011, 02:37:31 AM
 Post 3

Woof,
Very chummy. I wonder why? See post 4 wink 
  
  Russia and Iraq present peace plans for Syria
Posted By Mary Casey, Tom Kutsch  Friday, December 16, 2011 - 8:47 AM   Share
Russia and Iraq present peace plans for Syria

After months of reticence on international involvement in Syria, Russia has proposed a surprisingly tougher draft resolution on Syria to the United Nations Security Council. The resolution would call on all parties to immediately end violence, "including disproportionate use of force by the Syrian authorities." Western countries believe the language was too weak, but were willing to negotiate, optimistic that these efforts would end the Security Council deadlock. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was encouraged that Russia acknowledged the need for the Security Council to address the violence in Syria, however said "There are some issues in it that we would not be able to support. There's unfortunately a seeming parity between the government and peaceful protesters." Meanwhile, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said Iraq will send a delegation to Syria to discuss an Iraqi peace initiative encouraging dialogue between the government and opposition in efforts to end the conflict. Elsewhere, Syrian army defectors killed 27 soldiers in a three-pronged, seemingly coordinated attack. The insurgency is becoming increasingly better armed and organized, with the Free Syrian Army claiming to have orchestrated many recent attacks.

                                                              P.C.
 
127  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Iran lays low on: December 18, 2011, 02:25:14 AM
 Post 2

 After Deadly Attacks in Iraq, Iran Lays Low While U.S. Plans Withdrawal
By Jennifer Griffin & Justin Fishel

Published October 03, 2011

A failed Improvised Rocket-Assisted Missile attack on a U.S. military outpost in eastern Iraq led an explosives team to this nearby weapons cache in July. Analysis indicates that the 107mm rockets are unique to Iranian design and manufacturing, validating U.S. assertions that the Iranian Regime has been playing an increasingly nefarious role within Iraq’s borders.
U.S. intelligence officials suspect that Iran, after deadly attacks by proxy militia in Iraq, is laying low until U.S. troops leave Iraq at the end of the year.

An Iranian militia on July 12 attempted to fire 41 Iranian-made rockets at a U.S. military post in eastern Iraq near the border with Iran. Seventeen of the 107 mm rockets were confiscated by U.S. and Iraqi forces before they could be launched, but the rest missed the U.S. base known as COS Garry Owen in Maysan province just north of Basra and instead hit the base for the Iraqi 10th Army division, killing several Iraqi women and children.

U.S. defense officials familiar with the incident tell Fox News that in response an angry Prime Minister Nouri Al Maliki issued a communiqué warning his Iranian counterparts that should such destabilizing operations continue he would be forced to ask U.S. forces to remain in Iraq past December 31, the current deadline for all U.S. forces to leave.

Since then, the number of Iranian proxy attacks by Asaib ahl al-Haq (AAH), or the League of the Righteous, against U.S. forces has dropped significantly. The reduced attacks led U.S. intelligence officials to conclude that Iran’s short term strategy may now be to wait for U.S. troops to leave at the end of the year before trying to reassert itself through the militias which have been trained by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps - Quds Force.

Until the misfire in July the Iranian strategy, according to U.S. military commanders, was to step up the number of attacks on U.S. forces in order to make it look as though U.S. troops were being forced to leave the region. The July incident appears to mark a shift in strategy, according to one senior defense official. The Revolutionary Guard asked the Asaib Ahl al-Haq militia to stand down while Maliki completes a difficult round of negotiations with the U.S. ambassador and State Department, determining how many, if any, U.S. troops will stay past December.

The 107 mm rockets fired at the U.S. base had writing on them that linked them to Iran and color bands on the munitions that also link them to Iraq’s next door neighbor, according to classified weapons manuals shared by Iraqi and U.S. forces.

AAH, the group that fired the rockets, is led by the notorious. Shiite cleric Qais Khazali who founded the group in 2006 after splitting from Muqtada al Sadr at the height of the Iraq civil war, according to the Institute for the Study of War. Khazali led a daring raid on U.S. forces in January 2007 in Karbala using American vehicles, uniforms and identification cards that left 5 U.S. soldiers dead. He and his brother and a Lebanese Hezbollah operative were captured by U.S. troops two months later.

AAH then carried out a coordinated attack on Iraq’s Finance ministry, kidnapping a British consultant. Khazali was released by U.S. forces in 2009 as part of a prisoner swap and attempt by the Maliki government to bring the Shiite militia into the political process.

Recently Khazali was photographed at a conference sponsored by the Iranian government in Iran celebrating the “Islamic Awakening,” Iran’s answer to the Arab Spring. He sat 4 rows behind President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, raising eyebrows among U.S. military officials who have faced dozens of attacks by his Shiite Iraqi militia since his release in 2009.

In June of this year, 9 U.S. soldiers were killed as a result of Iranian rockets. U.S. troops were attacked 6 times this year by militias firing Iranian rockets, twice as many times as the year before. Admiral Mike Mullen before retiring as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs last week warned, “If they [Iran] keep killing our troops that will not be something that we will sit idly by and watch.” Now it seems that Iran’s leadership has made a new calculation that it may be more beneficial to slow the attacks until the government of Iraq finalizes its request for how many U.S. troops it will ask to remain.

                                                      P.C.
128  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Iran's Plan for Mayhem on: December 18, 2011, 02:23:22 AM
Post 1

    Iran's Secret Plan For Mayhem
By ELI LAKE, Staff Reporter of the Sun | January 3, 2007

http://www.nysun.com/foreign/irans-secret-plan-for-mayhem/46032/

 
WASHINGTON — Iran is supporting both Sunni and Shiite terrorists in the Iraqi civil war, according to secret Iranian documents captured by Americans in Iraq.

The news that American forces had captured Iranians in Iraq was widely reported last month, but less well known is that the Iranians were carrying documents that offered Americans insight into Iranian activities in Iraq.

An American intelligence official said the new material, which has been authenticated within the intelligence community, confirms "that Iran is working closely with both the Shiite militias and Sunni Jihadist groups." The source was careful to stress that the Iranian plans do not extend to cooperation with Baathist groups fighting the government in Baghdad, and said the documents rather show how the Quds Force — the arm of Iran's revolutionary guard that supports Shiite Hezbollah, Sunni Hamas, and Shiite death squads — is working with individuals affiliated with Al Qaeda in Iraq and Ansar al-Sunna.

Another American official who has seen the summaries of the reporting affiliated with the arrests said it comprised a "smoking gun." "We found plans for attacks, phone numbers affiliated with Sunni bad guys, a lot of things that filled in the blanks on what these guys are up to," the official said.

One of the documents captured in the raids, according to two American officials and one Iraqi official, is an assessment of the Iraq civil war and new strategy from the Quds Force. According to the Iraqi source, that assessment is the equivalent of "Iran's Iraq Study Group," a reference to the bipartisan American commission that released war strategy recommendations after the November 7 elections. The document concludes, according to these sources, that Iraq's Sunni neighbors will step up their efforts to aid insurgent groups and that it is imperative for Iran to redouble efforts to retain influence with them, as well as with Shiite militias.

Rough translations of the Iranian assessment and strategy, as well as a summary of the intelligence haul, have been widely distributed throughout the policy community and are likely to influence the Iraq speech President Bush is expected to deliver in the coming days regarding the way forward for the war, according to two Bush administration officials.

The news that Iran's elite Quds Force would be in contact, and clandestinely cooperating, with Sunni Jihadists who attacked the Golden Mosque in Samarra (one of the holiest shrines in Shiism) on February 22, could shake the alliance Iraq's ruling Shiites have forged in recent years with Tehran. Many Iraq analysts believe the bombing vaulted Iraq into the current stage of its civil war.

The top Quds Force commander — known as Chizari, according to a December 30 story in the Washington Post — was captured inside a compound belonging to Abdul Aziz Hakim, the Shiite leader President Bush last month pressed to help forge a new ruling coalition that excludes a firebrand Shiite cleric, Moqtada al-Sadr.

According to one Iraqi official, the two Quds commanders were in Iraq at the behest of the Iraqi government, which had requested more senior Iranian points of contact when the government complained about Shiite death squad activity. The negotiations were part of an Iraqi effort to establish new rules of the road between Baghdad and Tehran. This arrangement was ironed out by Iraq's president, Jalal Talabani, when he was in Tehran at the end of November.

While Iran has openly supported Iraqi Shiite militias involved in attacks on American soldiers, the Quds Force connection to Sunni insurgents has been murkier.

In 2003, coalition forces captured a playbook outlining Iranian intentions to support insurgents of both stripes, but its authenticity was disputed.

American intelligence reports have suggested that export/import operations run by Sunni terrorists in Fallujah in 2004 received goods from the revolutionary guard.

"We have seen bits and piece of things before, but it was highly compartmentalized suggesting the Iranian link to Sunni groups," a military official said.

A former Iran analyst for the Pentagon who also worked as an adviser to the Coalition Provisional Authority, Michael Rubin, said yesterday: "There has been lots of information suggesting that Iran has not limited its outreach just to the Shiites, but this has been disputed."

He added, "When documents like this are found, usually intelligence officials may confirm their authenticity but argue they prove nothing because they do not reflect a decision to operationalize things."

A former State Department senior analyst on Iraq and Iran who left government service in 2005, Wayne White, said he did not think it was likely the Quds Force was supporting Sunni terrorists who were targeting Shiite political leaders and civilians, but stressed he did not know.

"I have no doubt whatsoever that al-Quds forces are on the ground and active in Iraq," he said. "That's about it. I saw evidence that Moqtada al Sadr was in contact with Sunni Arab insurgents in western Iraq, but I never saw evidence of Iran in that loop."

Mr. White added, "One problem that we all have is that people consistently conduct analysis assuming that the actor is going to act predictably or rationally based on their overall mindset or ideology. Sometimes people don't.

"One example of a mindset that may hinder analysis of Iranian involvement is the belief that Iran would never have any dealings with militant Sunni Arabs. But they allowed hundreds of Al Qaeda operatives to escape from Afghanistan across their territory in 2002," he said.


                                                         P.C.
129  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Lowes protest on: December 17, 2011, 09:15:45 PM
By JEFF KAROUB
 
updated 12/17/2011 6:25:14 PM ET 2011-12-17T23:25:14
ALLEN PARK, Mich. — Protesters descended on a Lowe's store in one of the country's largest Arab-American communities on Saturday, calling for a boycott after the home improvement chain pulled its ads from a reality television show about five Muslim families living in Michigan.
 
About 100 people gathered outside the store in Allen Park, a Detroit suburb adjacent to the city where "All-American Muslim" is filmed. Lowe's said this week that the TLC show had become a "lightning rod" for complaints, following an email campaign by a conservative Christian group.

Protesters including Christian clergy and lawmakers called for unity and held signs that read "Boycott Bigotry" and chanted "God Bless America, shame on Lowe's" during the rally, which was organized by a coalition of Christian, Muslim and civil rights groups.

Rep. Rashida Tlaib, a Detroit Democrat and the first Muslim woman elected to the Michigan Legislature, said it was "disgusting" for Lowe's to stop supporting a show that reflects America — the conservatives, liberals and even "the Kim Kardashians" in the Muslim community, she said.

"We're asking the company to change their mind," said protester Ray Holman, a legislative liaison for a United Auto Workers local. He said he was dismayed that the retailer "pulled sponsorship of a positive program."

A local rabbi extended his support to clergy at the protest and local Arab Americans, saying he and other Jews would have been at the protest had it not fallen during the Jewish Sabbath.

"I hope that they would likewise stand up and demonstrate should something outrageous like this take place against another religion," Rabbi Jason Miller said in a statement.

Lowe's spokeswoman Karen Cobb said Saturday that the company respected the protesters' opinion.

"We appreciate and respect everyone's right to express their opinion peacefully," she said.

The show premiered last month and chronicles the lives of families living in and around Dearborn, a suburb of Detroit at the heart of one of the largest Arab-American populations outside the Middle East.

Dearborn is home to the Islamic Center of America, one of the largest mosques in North America. Overall, the Detroit area has about 150,000 Muslims of many different ethnicities and is served by about 40 mosques.

It airs Sundays and ends its first season Jan. 8.

The Florida Family Association has said more than 60 companies it emailed, from Amazon to McDonalds, pulled their ads from the show, but Lowe's is the only major company so far to confirm that it had done so. The group accused the show of being "propaganda that riskily hides the Islamic agenda's clear and present danger to American liberties and traditional values."

The travel planning site Kayak.com also pulled its ads, though its marketing chief said the decision was made because the company was dissatisfied by the show's quality and TLC wasn't upfront with advertisers about how the show would be presented.

Saturday's rally was met by about 20 counter-protesters including John White, who lives in nearby Livonia and called those protesting against Lowe's "terribly misdirected." He acknowledged that he hadn't watched the show, saying he'd seen previews and read about it, but believed the company made a decision based on business, not bigotry.

 
An interfaith group of Muslim, Baptist and other religious leaders picket a Lowe's home improvement store to protest the chain' action in pulling its advertising from the "All-American Muslim" TV reality show. "Americans are not suspicious ... of baseball-playing, apple-pie eating Muslims," he said. "It's the ones you see on the news."

The manager of the Lowe's store, Doug Casey, said the company wasn't influenced by any outside group or ideology. He said those who criticized Lowe's have a right to their opinion, but that "it's not the opinion of most of the customers I spoke to in the store today."

"I'm deeply sorry if it's caused any divide in our community," he said. "It was never our intention to offend or alienate anyone."

The hubbub didn't keep people from shopping at the store. Keith Rissman, who was buying finishing boards for windows he's installing in his mother's garage, said he supported the company.

"It's a decision they're allowed to make," the 57-year-old said. "If (people) don't want to shop here, they don't have to."

Karen Lundquist, 65, came to the store with her son even though she didn't support Lowe's decision. "It just seems like they yielded to a Christian hate group," she said.



                                                       P.C.
130  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq on: December 17, 2011, 07:22:35 PM
Woof JDN,
 That is the genius behind the Lefts' political correctness. They can define anything, in part or as a whole, for any amount of time, as being some terrible thing. Political correctness is going to insure our ultimate defeat in any war we have to undertake if we don't secure the victory. And if you can find anywhere in the history of man where at least a short term form of occupation or form of imperialism wasn't used to successfully do it, I'd like you to name it. You completely ignored what I actually said and redefined it as being oil for blood. I said the Iraqi's should pay for what we have spent there, meaning the cost of their reconstruction, not the cost of our blood and treasure or for our profit and I clarified that in a follow up post which you ignored all together so you could continue your attack and add to it the asinine crap about Cuba just to further distort the debate and malign me personally; all the while not directly addressing me. That is a very disrespectful way of debate and verge's on being dishonest. However, time will tell as to what is going to be the out come in Iraq, the die has been cast, and I'm afraid it's going to be much worse than if we had kept at least a presence there. @JDN THERE WILL BE NO FURTHER DEBATE BETWEEN ME AND YOU ON THIS SUBJECT.
              P.C.
131  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq on: December 17, 2011, 04:54:47 PM
We should be building more bases in Iraq, right in Iran's backyard, not shutting them down. Iraq should be paying us in oil for every cent we have spent there too. History has shown us that you must win a peace and that you cannot retreat your way to it. Retreats, most often end in massacre's. For you Liberal, so called, peace activist's out there that have facilitated this result, and are celebrating this as being the end of the Iraq war; the war there is just starting, thanks to you.
                                             P.C.

Sounds like Colonialism and Imperialism at it's finest.  
Woof JDN,
 I don't deny that, and I know those labels, just like being called Hitler or racist can be applied broadly enough to discredit any solution to any problem. Nothing happens in war without some pain but that doesn't mean the pain lasts forever. The reality is, one: Iraq should pay for it's own reconstruction because they can afford it, and it is they that benefit from it not us. I didn't say load up the ships then set fire to what's left or let's make a profit off the deal, but quite frankly we couldn't afford to do this on our own, and two: our enemies are going to grab the oil for themselves after we leave and they are going to set fire to the place. So short term name calling or long term failure. The President has picked failure.
                                                     P.C.
 
132  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iraq on: December 17, 2011, 03:05:48 AM
Woof,
 
 I said way back when, that we would give them a chance at a free society and in the end we would just walk away from it and leave them to their own designs. I also said that they didn't have a chance in hell of keeping it free after we left. I'm glad Saddam is gone, I'm glad we killed a lot of terrorist fighters there. I feel sorry for the Iraqi people that do want freedom. We should have done it like we did Japan, but there were too many people invested in it's failure back here at home to have had that kind of success. It takes commitment to do things right, unfortunately our News Media and Press are committed to an ideology that breeds failures like this then they will turn their back on the massacre to come and have no shame in saying they are not to blame, much like the million or so slaughtered after we pulled out of Vietnam. It won't come as immediate as Vietnam but in time it will.

 The President was correct in not celebrating this as victory in Iraq, because it is not a victory, it's a retreat from the frontlines of the war on Western civilization by the Islamic Fascist's. We should be building more bases in Iraq, right in Iran's backyard, not shutting them down. Iraq should be paying us in oil for every cent we have spent there too. History has shown us that you must win a peace and that you cannot retreat your way to it. Retreats, most often end in massacre's. For you Liberal, so called, peace activist's out there that have facilitated this result, and are celebrating this as being the end of the Iraq war; the war there is just starting, thanks to you.
                                             P.C.
133  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Captured narco had arenal on: December 16, 2011, 09:38:29 PM

Mexico says captured cartel leader had arsenal
By E. EDUARDO CASTILLO | AP – Tue, Dec 13, 2011Email

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexican authorities said Tuesday that an alleged founder of the Zetas drug cartel had an arsenal of 169 weapons when he was captured Monday, and may have been linked to the abduction of nine Mexican marines.

Navy spokesman Jose Luis Vergara said suspect Raul Lucio Hernandez Lechuga oversaw Zetas operations around the Gulf coast state of Veracruz, where nine marines disappeared earlier this year.

Vergara said a suspect was killed and a marine wounded in a firefight that erupted during Hernandez Lechuga's capture Monday in the Veracruz state city of Cordoba. The bust was the result of a yearlong intelligence operation, Vergara said.

Marines found 133 rifles, five grenade launchers, 29 grenades and 36 pistols at the scene of the raid near a highway. Marines also found bulletproof vests with the letter "Z'', the zetas symbol, on the front.

Vergara said Hernandez Lechuga was one of Mexico's 37 most wanted drug traffickers, and that with his arrest, 22 of those 37 have either been killed or detained.

The Zetas have been linked to some of the apparent abductions of Mexican marines, but Vergara didn't say what specific evidence authorities had of Hernandez Lechuga's involvement in the cases.

The apparent abductions of Mexican navy personnel have been shrouded in mystery, with the navy previously acknowledging that three marines and a navy cadet were abducted by suspected drug cartel gunmen in August in Veracruz, the state's largest city.

Later that month, the navy said it had found four bodies in a pit on the outskirts of Veracruz city, and that the remains might be those of the missing marines, but it never publicly confirmed that was the case.

At a Tuesday news conference where Hernandez Lechuga and four alleged associates were paraded before the media, Vergara said a total of nine marines had disappeared, but didn't say whether any of them had been found.

Mexican drug cartels have kidnapped and killed military personnel before, but such incidents remain relatively rare.

Hernandez Lechuga was the leader of the Zetas in about 10 states, including Veracruz. The federal government had offered a reward of 15 million pesos, or about $1.2 million, for information leading to his arrest. Vergara said the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration was also offering a $1 million reward for Hernandez Lechuga, known by the nickname "Lucky."

The Zetas organization was formed by a small group of elite soldiers based in Tamaulipas state, across the border from Texas, who deserted to work for the Gulf drug cartel in the 1990s.

The Zetas split from their former allies in the Gulf cartel last year, setting off bloody fights throughout Mexico as they sought to expand south.

In Veracruz, the Zetas are believed to be locked in a bloody turf battle with groups allied with the Sinaloa cartel.

Also Tuesday, gunmen killed a town's deputy mayor and her bodyguard and wounded the town's police chief and his family while they were in the northern city of Chihuahua, authorities said.

Attackers opened fire on the two cars being used by the officials from the town of Gran Morelos, said the Chihuahua state prosecutors' spokesman, Carlos Gonzalez.

He said deputy mayor Idalia Ayala and her bodyguard died in one car. Police chief Miguel Gomez was in the second with his wife and two children, and all were wounded and taken to a hospital, Gonzalez said.

Gomez was named police chief after last month's arrest of Gran Morelos' top cop. Authorities said soldiers caught the police chief while he and police officers from the nearby town of Belisario Dominguez met with a boss for La Linea, a gang of hit men for the Juarez Cartel.

In neighboring Coahuila state, gunmen killed the director of the prison in the capital city of Saltillo, authorities said.

Serafin Pena Santos was ambushed Tuesday afternoon as he drove through a residential area of the northern city, state prosecutors said in a statement.

Prosecutors didn't give a motive in the killing, but said the assailants used automatic rifles, weapons commonly used by Mexico's drug traffickers.

___

Associated Press writers Ricardo Chavez in Ciudad Juarez and Oscar Villalba in Piedras Negras contributed to this report.

                                                          P.C.
134  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Drone, tricked into landing on: December 16, 2011, 07:16:03 PM

Exclusive: Iran hijacked US drone, says Iranian engineer
In an exclusive interview, an engineer working to unlock the secrets of the captured RQ-170 Sentinel says they exploited a known vulnerability and tricked the US drone into landing in Iran.
By Scott Peterson, Payam Faramarzi* | Christian Science Monitor – 11 hrs agoEmail

Iran guided the CIA's "lost" stealth drone to an intact landing inside hostile territory by exploiting a navigational weakness long-known to the US military, according to an Iranian engineer now working on the captured drone's systems inside Iran.

Iranian electronic warfare specialists were able to cut off communications links of the American bat-wing RQ-170 Sentinel, says the engineer, who works for one of many Iranian military and civilian teams currently trying to unravel the drone’s stealth and intelligence secrets, and who could not be named for his safety.

Using knowledge gleaned from previous downed American drones and a technique proudly claimed by Iranian commanders in September, the Iranian specialists then reconfigured the drone's GPS coordinates to make it land in Iran at what the drone thought was its actual home base in Afghanistan.


"The GPS navigation is the weakest point," the Iranian engineer told the Monitor, giving the most detailed description yet published of Iran's "electronic ambush" of the highly classified US drone. "By putting noise [jamming] on the communications, you force the bird into autopilot. This is where the bird loses its brain."

The “spoofing” technique that the Iranians used – which took into account precise landing altitudes, as well as latitudinal and longitudinal data – made the drone “land on its own where we wanted it to, without having to crack the remote-control signals and communications” from the US control center, says the engineer.

The revelations about Iran's apparent electronic prowess come as the US, Israel, and some European nations appear to be engaged in an ever-widening covert war with Iran, which has seen assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists, explosions at Iran's missile and industrial facilities, and the Stuxnet computer virus that set back Iran’s nuclear program.

Now this engineer’s account of how Iran took over one of America’s most sophisticated drones suggests Tehran has found a way to hit back. The techniques were developed from reverse-engineering several less sophisticated American drones captured or shot down in recent years, the engineer says, and by taking advantage of weak, easily manipulated GPS signals, which calculate location and speed from multiple satellites.

Western military experts and a number of published papers on GPS spoofing indicate that the scenario described by the Iranian engineer is plausible.

"Even modern combat-grade GPS [is] very susceptible” to manipulation, says former US Navy electronic warfare specialist Robert Densmore, adding that it is “certainly possible” to recalibrate the GPS on a drone so that it flies on a different course. “I wouldn't say it's easy, but the technology is there.”

In 2009, Iran-backed Shiite militants in Iraq were found to have downloaded live, unencrypted video streams from American Predator drones with inexpensive, off-the-shelf software. But Iran’s apparent ability now to actually take control of a drone is far more significant.

Iran asserted its ability to do this in September, as pressure mounted over its nuclear program.

Gen. Moharam Gholizadeh, the deputy for electronic warfare at the air defense headquarters of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), described to Fars News how Iran could alter the path of a GPS-guided missile – a tactic more easily applied to a slower-moving drone.

“We have a project on hand that is one step ahead of jamming, meaning ‘deception’ of the aggressive systems,” said Gholizadeh, such that “we can define our own desired information for it so the path of the missile would change to our desired destination.”

Gholizadeh said that “all the movements of these [enemy drones]” were being watched, and “obstructing” their work was “always on our agenda.”

That interview has since been pulled from Fars’ Persian-language website. And last month, the relatively young Gholizadeh died of a heart attack, which some Iranian news sites called suspicious – suggesting the electronic warfare expert may have been a casualty in the covert war against Iran.

Iran's growing electronic capabilities
Iranian lawmakers say the drone capture is a "great epic" and claim to be "in the final steps of breaking into the aircraft's secret code."

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta told Fox News on Dec. 13 that the US will "absolutely" continue the drone campaign over Iran, looking for evidence of any nuclear weapons work. But the stakes are higher for such surveillance, now that Iran can apparently disrupt the work of US drones.

US officials skeptical of Iran’s capabilities blame a malfunction, but so far can't explain how Iran acquired the drone intact. One American analyst ridiculed Iran’s capability, telling Defense News that the loss was “like dropping a Ferrari into an ox-cart technology culture.”

Yet Iran’s claims to the contrary resonate more in light of new details about how it brought down the drone – and other markers that signal growing electronic expertise.

A former senior Iranian official who asked not to be named said: "There are a lot of human resources in Iran.... Iran is not like Pakistan."

“Technologically, our distance from the Americans, the Zionists, and other advanced countries is not so far to make the downing of this plane seem like a dream for us … but it could be amazing for others,” deputy IRGC commander Gen. Hossein Salami said this week.

According to a European intelligence source, Iran shocked Western intelligence agencies in a previously unreported incident that took place sometime in the past two years, when it managed to “blind” a CIA spy satellite by “aiming a laser burst quite accurately.”

More recently, Iran was able to hack Google security certificates, says the engineer. In September, the Google accounts of 300,000 Iranians were made accessible by hackers. The targeted company said "circumstantial evidence" pointed to a "state-driven attack" coming from Iran, meant to snoop on users.

Cracking the protected GPS coordinates on the Sentinel drone was no more difficult, asserts the engineer.

US knew of GPS systems' vulnerability
Use of drones has become more risky as adversaries like Iran hone countermeasures. The US military has reportedly been aware of vulnerabilities with pirating unencrypted drone data streams since the Bosnia campaign in the mid-1990s.

Top US officials said in 2009 that they were working to encrypt all drone data streams in Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan – after finding militant laptops loaded with days' worth of data in Iraq – and acknowledged that they were "subject to listening and exploitation."

Perhaps as easily exploited are the GPS navigational systems upon which so much of the modern military depends.

"GPS signals are weak and can be easily outpunched [overridden] by poorly controlled signals from television towers, devices such as laptops and MP3 players, or even mobile satellite services," Andrew Dempster, a professor from the University of New South Wales School of Surveying and Spatial Information Systems, told a March conference on GPS vulnerability in Australia.

"This is not only a significant hazard for military, industrial, and civilian transport and communication systems, but criminals have worked out how they can jam GPS," he says.

The US military has sought for years to fortify or find alternatives to the GPS system of satellites, which are used for both military and civilian purposes. In 2003, a “Vulnerability Assessment Team” at Los Alamos National Laboratory published research explaining how weak GPS signals were easily overwhelmed with a stronger local signal.

“A more pernicious attack involves feeding the GPS receiver fake GPS signals so that it believes it is located somewhere in space and time that it is not,” reads the Los Alamos report. “In a sophisticated spoofing attack, the adversary would send a false signal reporting the moving target’s true position and then gradually walk the target to a false position.”

The vulnerability remains unresolved, and a paper presented at a Chicago communications security conference in October laid out parameters for successful spoofing of both civilian and military GPS units to allow a "seamless takeover" of drones or other targets.

To “better cope with hostile electronic attacks,” the US Air Force in late September awarded two $47 million contracts to develop a "navigation warfare" system to replace GPS on aircraft and missiles, according to the Defense Update website.

Official US data on GPS describes "the ongoing GPS modernization program" for the Air Force, which "will enhance the jam resistance of the military GPS service, making it more robust."

Why the drone's underbelly was damaged
Iran's drone-watching project began in 2007, says the Iranian engineer, and then was stepped up and became public in 2009 – the same year that the RQ-170 was first deployed in Afghanistan with what were then state-of-the-art surveillance systems.

In January, Iran said it had shot down two conventional (nonstealth) drones, and in July, Iran showed Russian experts several US drones – including one that had been watching over the underground uranium enrichment facility at Fordo, near the holy city of Qom.

In capturing the stealth drone this month at Kashmar, 140 miles inside northeast Iran, the Islamic Republic appears to have learned from two years of close observation.

Iran displayed the drone on state-run TV last week, with a dent in the left wing and the undercarriage and landing gear hidden by anti-American banners.

The Iranian engineer explains why: "If you look at the location where we made it land and the bird's home base, they both have [almost] the same altitude," says the Iranian engineer. "There was a problem [of a few meters] with the exact altitude so the bird's underbelly was damaged in landing; that's why it was covered in the broadcast footage."

Prior to the disappearance of the stealth drone earlier this month, Iran’s electronic warfare capabilities were largely unknown – and often dismissed.

"We all feel drunk [with happiness] now," says the Iranian engineer. "Have you ever had a new laptop? Imagine that excitement multiplied many-fold." When the Revolutionary Guard first recovered the drone, they were aware it might be rigged to self-destruct, but they "were so excited they could not stay away."

* Scott Peterson, the Monitor's Middle East correspondent, wrote this story with an Iranian journalist who publishes under the pen name Payam Faramarzi and cannot be further identified for security reasons.

                                                 P.C.
135  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Self Defense with Pistols on: December 16, 2011, 06:55:58 PM
Interesting.  I must add that conservatives are very invested in making sure you stay under the government thumb (police and many "law and order" types tend to identify with the conservative side), as well.

I do see how it probably will be impossible to see how the use of weapons breaks down.  That is too bad, but I will keep reading.

I started thinking about this because it seems to me that a somewhat fit, somewhat trained person can manage almost everything, outside of the home with smarts, awareness and maybe a blade or impact weapon.  However, it seems like home invasions would require firearms, simply because of the intention of the invader, the surprise factor and the isolation factor.  These are only my thoughts and I am not a LEO and am only familiar with certain kinds of violence which may not even cover half of the things that happen to people.  All this to say; I may have some illusions and need to get rid of them.
Woof dreatx,
 Certain members of our society are targeted by criminals because they can't fight back so well, and to use a knife or impact weapon you still need to be able to block blows and get around their blocks to make contact with the weapon. Often there are more than one attacker and while you're tied up with one of them going toe to toe, trying to stick your knife in him, his buddies are stabbing you to death or pull out their guns and shoot you. If you have your wife and family with you, what's happening to them while you are knife fighting, are you going to hold all them bad guys at knife point or worse stick point? One of them is going to grab your kid. There are other reasons why concealed firearms are needed for personal protection out on the street, but one that is often ignored is the deterrent factor. If the bad guys can't tell who's armed then even a little old lady doesn't look so helpless to them.
                                                           P.C.
136  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Drone tricked into landing? on: December 16, 2011, 06:17:34 PM

Exclusive: Iran hijacked US drone, says Iranian engineer

In an exclusive interview, an engineer working to unlock the secrets of the captured RQ-170 Sentinel says they exploited a known vulnerability and tricked the US drone into landing in Iran.
By Scott Peterson, Payam Faramarzi* | Christian Science Monitor – 11 hrs agoEmail
 Iran guided the CIA's "lost" stealth drone to an intact landing inside hostile territory by exploiting a navigational weakness long-known to the US military, according to an Iranian engineer now working on the captured drone's systems inside Iran.

Iranian electronic warfare specialists were able to cut off communications links of the American bat-wing RQ-170 Sentinel, says the engineer, who works for one of many Iranian military and civilian teams currently trying to unravel the drone’s stealth and intelligence secrets, and who could not be named for his safety.

Using knowledge gleaned from previous downed American drones and a technique proudly claimed by Iranian commanders in September, the Iranian specialists then reconfigured the drone's GPS coordinates to make it land in Iran at what the drone thought was its actual home base in Afghanistan.


"The GPS navigation is the weakest point," the Iranian engineer told the Monitor, giving the most detailed description yet published of Iran's "electronic ambush" of the highly classified US drone. "By putting noise [jamming] on the communications, you force the bird into autopilot. This is where the bird loses its brain."

The “spoofing” technique that the Iranians used – which took into account precise landing altitudes, as well as latitudinal and longitudinal data – made the drone “land on its own where we wanted it to, without having to crack the remote-control signals and communications” from the US control center, says the engineer.

The revelations about Iran's apparent electronic prowess come as the US, Israel, and some European nations appear to be engaged in an ever-widening covert war with Iran, which has seen assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists, explosions at Iran's missile and industrial facilities, and the Stuxnet computer virus that set back Iran’s nuclear program.

Now this engineer’s account of how Iran took over one of America’s most sophisticated drones suggests Tehran has found a way to hit back. The techniques were developed from reverse-engineering several less sophisticated American drones captured or shot down in recent years, the engineer says, and by taking advantage of weak, easily manipulated GPS signals, which calculate location and speed from multiple satellites.

Western military experts and a number of published papers on GPS spoofing indicate that the scenario described by the Iranian engineer is plausible.

"Even modern combat-grade GPS [is] very susceptible” to manipulation, says former US Navy electronic warfare specialist Robert Densmore, adding that it is “certainly possible” to recalibrate the GPS on a drone so that it flies on a different course. “I wouldn't say it's easy, but the technology is there.”

In 2009, Iran-backed Shiite militants in Iraq were found to have downloaded live, unencrypted video streams from American Predator drones with inexpensive, off-the-shelf software. But Iran’s apparent ability now to actually take control of a drone is far more significant.

Iran asserted its ability to do this in September, as pressure mounted over its nuclear program.

Gen. Moharam Gholizadeh, the deputy for electronic warfare at the air defense headquarters of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), described to Fars News how Iran could alter the path of a GPS-guided missile – a tactic more easily applied to a slower-moving drone.

“We have a project on hand that is one step ahead of jamming, meaning ‘deception’ of the aggressive systems,” said Gholizadeh, such that “we can define our own desired information for it so the path of the missile would change to our desired destination.”

Gholizadeh said that “all the movements of these [enemy drones]” were being watched, and “obstructing” their work was “always on our agenda.”

That interview has since been pulled from Fars’ Persian-language website. And last month, the relatively young Gholizadeh died of a heart attack, which some Iranian news sites called suspicious – suggesting the electronic warfare expert may have been a casualty in the covert war against Iran.

Iran's growing electronic capabilities
Iranian lawmakers say the drone capture is a "great epic" and claim to be "in the final steps of breaking into the aircraft's secret code."

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta told Fox News on Dec. 13 that the US will "absolutely" continue the drone campaign over Iran, looking for evidence of any nuclear weapons work. But the stakes are higher for such surveillance, now that Iran can apparently disrupt the work of US drones.

US officials skeptical of Iran’s capabilities blame a malfunction, but so far can't explain how Iran acquired the drone intact. One American analyst ridiculed Iran’s capability, telling Defense News that the loss was “like dropping a Ferrari into an ox-cart technology culture.”

Yet Iran’s claims to the contrary resonate more in light of new details about how it brought down the drone – and other markers that signal growing electronic expertise.

A former senior Iranian official who asked not to be named said: "There are a lot of human resources in Iran.... Iran is not like Pakistan."

“Technologically, our distance from the Americans, the Zionists, and other advanced countries is not so far to make the downing of this plane seem like a dream for us … but it could be amazing for others,” deputy IRGC commander Gen. Hossein Salami said this week.

According to a European intelligence source, Iran shocked Western intelligence agencies in a previously unreported incident that took place sometime in the past two years, when it managed to “blind” a CIA spy satellite by “aiming a laser burst quite accurately.”

More recently, Iran was able to hack Google security certificates, says the engineer. In September, the Google accounts of 300,000 Iranians were made accessible by hackers. The targeted company said "circumstantial evidence" pointed to a "state-driven attack" coming from Iran, meant to snoop on users.

Cracking the protected GPS coordinates on the Sentinel drone was no more difficult, asserts the engineer.

US knew of GPS systems' vulnerability
Use of drones has become more risky as adversaries like Iran hone countermeasures. The US military has reportedly been aware of vulnerabilities with pirating unencrypted drone data streams since the Bosnia campaign in the mid-1990s.

Top US officials said in 2009 that they were working to encrypt all drone data streams in Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan – after finding militant laptops loaded with days' worth of data in Iraq – and acknowledged that they were "subject to listening and exploitation."

Perhaps as easily exploited are the GPS navigational systems upon which so much of the modern military depends.

"GPS signals are weak and can be easily outpunched [overridden] by poorly controlled signals from television towers, devices such as laptops and MP3 players, or even mobile satellite services," Andrew Dempster, a professor from the University of New South Wales School of Surveying and Spatial Information Systems, told a March conference on GPS vulnerability in Australia.

"This is not only a significant hazard for military, industrial, and civilian transport and communication systems, but criminals have worked out how they can jam GPS," he says.

The US military has sought for years to fortify or find alternatives to the GPS system of satellites, which are used for both military and civilian purposes. In 2003, a “Vulnerability Assessment Team” at Los Alamos National Laboratory published research explaining how weak GPS signals were easily overwhelmed with a stronger local signal.

“A more pernicious attack involves feeding the GPS receiver fake GPS signals so that it believes it is located somewhere in space and time that it is not,” reads the Los Alamos report. “In a sophisticated spoofing attack, the adversary would send a false signal reporting the moving target’s true position and then gradually walk the target to a false position.”

The vulnerability remains unresolved, and a paper presented at a Chicago communications security conference in October laid out parameters for successful spoofing of both civilian and military GPS units to allow a "seamless takeover" of drones or other targets.

To “better cope with hostile electronic attacks,” the US Air Force in late September awarded two $47 million contracts to develop a "navigation warfare" system to replace GPS on aircraft and missiles, according to the Defense Update website.

Official US data on GPS describes "the ongoing GPS modernization program" for the Air Force, which "will enhance the jam resistance of the military GPS service, making it more robust."

Why the drone's underbelly was damaged
Iran's drone-watching project began in 2007, says the Iranian engineer, and then was stepped up and became public in 2009 – the same year that the RQ-170 was first deployed in Afghanistan with what were then state-of-the-art surveillance systems.

In January, Iran said it had shot down two conventional (nonstealth) drones, and in July, Iran showed Russian experts several US drones – including one that had been watching over the underground uranium enrichment facility at Fordo, near the holy city of Qom.

In capturing the stealth drone this month at Kashmar, 140 miles inside northeast Iran, the Islamic Republic appears to have learned from two years of close observation.

Iran displayed the drone on state-run TV last week, with a dent in the left wing and the undercarriage and landing gear hidden by anti-American banners.

The Iranian engineer explains why: "If you look at the location where we made it land and the bird's home base, they both have [almost] the same altitude," says the Iranian engineer. "There was a problem [of a few meters] with the exact altitude so the bird's underbelly was damaged in landing; that's why it was covered in the broadcast footage."

Prior to the disappearance of the stealth drone earlier this month, Iran’s electronic warfare capabilities were largely unknown – and often dismissed.

"We all feel drunk [with happiness] now," says the Iranian engineer. "Have you ever had a new laptop? Imagine that excitement multiplied many-fold." When the Revolutionary Guard first recovered the drone, they were aware it might be rigged to self-destruct, but they "were so excited they could not stay away."

* Scott Peterson, the Monitor's Middle East correspondent, wrote this story with an Iranian journalist who publishes under the pen name Payam Faramarzi and cannot be further identified for security reasons.

                                            P.C.
137  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: We the Well-armed People (Gun rights stuff ) on: December 16, 2011, 10:20:45 AM
Woof,
 The short answer is because those guns were counted as illegal guns that were traced back to America and those numbers were used to call for more gun control laws and restrictions in the U.S.
                                     P.C.
138  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: No, no one knows. on: December 16, 2011, 08:05:52 AM
I am curious about something, and this seems to be the place for it:  In my mind, it seems that it is likely that there have been more incidents of defense with a gun in the home, and more instances of defense with some other kind of weapon out in the world.  Anyone know how that breaks down?
Woof dreatx,
 
 You will probably have trouble hashing the statistic's out on that one. Most private and government entities that are interested in such numbers usually only want to use them for political fodder, and since most big cities (where most of the crimes and deaths occur), are ran by Liberals, they are generally only interested in keeping records on gun deaths committed by violent criminals. They are not all that interested in how many people are stabbed or beaten to death and they are definitely not interested in how many people legally and successfully defend themselves against violence, by any method; gun or otherwise.

 You see if they started keeping those kinds of records then that would show how many innocent lives were potentially saved by the use of a weapon in the hands of a law abiding citizen. They are afraid of that number because then they wouldn't be able to justify their calls for more gun control. Why would they want more gun control that restricts law abiding citizens from having guns, when the crooks and murderer's just break those laws, leaving citizens defenseless?

 Well, they want you to need government protection, that way they can hire government employee's (cops, fire fighters, teachers, all unionized of course), that will also be dependant on a government check and benefits, then after they have wasted your tax dollars and need more, they can threaten you with taking the police off the street and let the riots, looting and burning begin. That's only half of it though; you see they need criminals to make this work, so they crowd millions of people into certain areas of these big liberal city's, make sure that all the jobs dry up or get sent overseas, then put a government roof over their head and give them just enough food stamps to keep them alive, make them angry at the world by telling them slavery from 200 hundred years ago put them there, then just set back and wait until the despair, depression, and hopelessness of their situation drives them to self medicate with illegal drugs and alcohol and turn to crime to get the money they need to buy the things they need and want.

 Of course drug users, attract drug dealers, and things get violent when they compete with each other, so they need gangs and the gangs raise the kids, because daddy is in jail and mom is stoned. You keep the borders wide open so the drugs keep coming and as a added benefit you get illegal immigrants and they fill any jobs left and also become depended on government handouts. You don't let prayer or the Ten Commandments in the schools because prayer might give them hope and the Commandments might contradict what they learn in the gangs. You know, all that 'thou shalt not kill' crap. Of course they won't be in school long anyway because most will drop out, which doesn't bother the teachers, so long as they get more pay and benefits and if they don't, they'll strike with the cops and fire fighters.

 Now the government has a nice little round robin, closed system, to manipulate and control, all for their own corrupt reasons and benefit. It's really a brilliant scheme because the elite in the government get all the power and money and then they blame all the problems on guns, or slavery from 200 hundred years ago, or greedy corporations, or global warming or guns (did I say guns twice?). They are really creative when it comes to finding something to blame while they keep accumulating power and control. Well, I got little off your question there but to answer it. No, no one knows how that breaks down. wink
                                            
                                  P.C.
139  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Self Defense with pistols on: December 15, 2011, 11:09:01 PM
Woof,
 The answer is next.
            P.C.
140  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: We the Well-armed People (Gun rights stuff ) on: December 15, 2011, 08:24:56 PM
Woof JDN,
 First you claim that Americans aren't concerned about the thousands of murders taking place in Mexico and now you want Americans to ignore one of our government agency's that has help facilitate some of those deaths as well as the death of one of our Border Patrol agents. If it was a mistake, do you want it to happen again? If people do ignore it, that will almost guarantee it will happen again. If it was a legit sting that was botched by some kind of half ass political play and interference from the Administration, don't you think something like that should be ferreted out? Do you think people inside this Administration and the government are going to do that without any pressure from We the People? Of course not. You're an intelligent guy but some of your post's aren't congruent enough for anyone to nail down what your viewpoint is and they leave some of us feeling somewhat schizophrenic in trying to figure out how or even what to respond to. I think you are conflicted on various points of the issue and need to work those out for yourself. I'm not attacking you or telling you what to think but I believe you have some important points to make and once you reslove and more precisely define how you feel about them I think you'll find that you are not as embattled here by the other poster's as it seems right now. I think part of what you are saying is that you don't want this to turn into a political witchhunt if in fact it was just an operation they lost control of, and you also seem to be saying even if there was some failings by higher ups no one really has the moral high ground to beat them over the head with it because stuff like this happens all the time regardless of who's in office and there is little if any evidence of intentional wrong doing so far. On the other hand you accuse and lament that American's don't care about what happens in Mexico but at the same time they should ignore this story and not be concerned about the reasoning or motovations that went into this operation that violated Mexico's sovereignty and adds to the violence of the cartels against eachother and innocent citizens, then you say it's awful and terrible that this happened. So right now what I'm getting from all this is that: It's bad that this happened, American's are heartless, there's no evidence it was politically motivated even though it involved illegal guns being moved across the border, which is a political hot topic of this Administration and an issue they have been using as a reason for more gun control but none of that should be looked at, and no one should be held accountable if it was a mistake and American's shouldn't care if it was a mistake or not. rolleyes
                                        P.C.
141  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: We the Well-armed People (Gun rights stuff ) on: December 15, 2011, 06:26:40 AM

That said, frankly I don't understand why it would even affect gun control in America.  I mean 10's of thousands of Mexicans have already been gunned down
by the Cartels.  What's a few hundred more guns that frankly/obviously given the death count, could have been bought elsewhere?  Surely if it was a "false
flag operation" to promote gun control in America they could have done better.  Frankly, and sadly, no one cares in America about the huge death toll in Mexico. I truly doubt
if it would even affect gun control in America one way or another.


Woof JDN,
 Really??? Come off it man.
                  P.C.
142  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Cyberwar and American Freedom on: December 13, 2011, 08:44:06 AM
Woof GM,
 Ha! Good update. cheesy
                P.C.
143  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Cyberwar and American Freedom on: December 13, 2011, 02:30:55 AM
Iran claims its experts almost done recovering data from captured US drone
Nasser Karimi, The Associated Press  Dec 12, 2011 13:45:00 PM
0

TEHRAN, Iran - Iranian experts are in the final stages of recovering data from the U.S. surveillance drone captured by the country's armed forces, state TV reported Monday.
Tehran has flaunted the capture of the RQ-170 Sentinel, a top-secret aircraft with stealth technology, as a victory for Iran and a defeat for the United States in a complicated intelligence and technological battle.
President Barack Obama said Monday that the U.S. was pressing Iran to return the aircraft, which U.S. officials say malfunctioned and was not brought down by Iran. But a senior commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guard said on Sunday that the country would not send it back, adding that "no one returns the symbol of aggression."
Iranian lawmaker Parviz Sorouri, a member of the parliament's national security and foreign policy committee, said Monday the extracted information will be used to file a lawsuit against the United States for what he called the "invasion" by the unmanned aircraft.
Sorouri also claimed that Iran has the capability to reproduce the drone through reverse engineering, but he did not elaborate.
State TV broadcast images Thursday of Iranian military officials inspecting what it identified as the drone. Iranian state media have said the unmanned spy aircraft was detected and brought down over the country's east, near the border with Afghanistan.
Officers in the Revolutionary Guard, Iran's most powerful military force, have claimed the country's armed forces brought down the surveillance aircraft with an electronic ambush, causing minimum damage to the drone.
American officials have said that U.S. intelligence assessments indicate that Iran neither shot the drone down, nor used electronic or cybertechnology to force it from the sky. They contend the drone malfunctioned. The officials spoke anonymously in order to discuss the classified program.
U.S. officials are concerned others may be able to reverse engineer the chemical composition of the drone's radar-deflecting paint or the aircraft's sophisticated optics technology that allows operators to positively identify terror suspects from tens of thousands of feet in the air.
They are also worried adversaries may be able to hack into the drone's database, although it is not clear whether any data could be recovered. Some surveillance technologies allow video to stream through to operators on the ground but do not store much collected data. If they do, it is encrypted.
Separately, in comments to the semi-official ISNA news agency, Sorouri said Iran would soon hold a navy drill to practice the closure of the strategic Strait of Hormuz at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, which is the passageway for about 40 per cent of the world's oil tanker traffic.
Despite Sorouri's comments and past threats that Iran could seal off the waterway if the U.S. or Israel moved against Iranian nuclear facilities, no such exercise has been officially announced.
"Iran will make the world unsafe" if the world attacks Iran, Sorouri said.
Both the U.S. and Israel have not rule out military option against Iran's controversial nuclear program, which the West suspects is aimed at making atomic weapons. Iran denies the charge, saying its nuclear activities are geared toward peaceful purposes like power generation.
In another sign of the increasing tensions between Iran and the U.S., Tehran said Monday it has asked Interpol to help seek the arrest of two former U.S. officials it accuses of supporting the assassinations of Iranian officials.
Iran's state prosecutor, Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejehei, told reporters that Iran has filed charges against retired U.S. Army Gen. Jack Keane and former CIA agent Reuel Marc Gerecht.
Ejehei said Iran sent a request to Interpol in Paris to help pursue the two Americans through its office in Washington.
Iran says the two men urged the Obama administration to use covert action against Iran and kill some of its top officials, including Brig. Gen. Ghassem Soleimani commander of the Quds Force, the special foreign operations unit of the Revolutionary Guard.
144  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Cyberwar and American Freedom on: December 13, 2011, 02:27:48 AM
Woof,
 This, along with a Sentinel stealth done losing it's satellite tether and gliding to a landing in Iran, might be of concern.

By Jason Ryan
@JasonRyanABC
Follow on Twitter
Nov 16, 2011 8:11pm
US Satellites Compromised by Malicious Cyber Activity
 
On at least two occasions, hackers have taken over U.S. satellites and targeted their command-and-control systems, a report by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission revealed today.
The incidents involved two Earth observation satellites. While it may be difficult to trace who hacked the satellites, U.S. officials acknowledged the incidents had to come from a nation power.
U.S. officials cannot clearly trace the incidents to China, but the report released by the by congressionally mandated commission noted that Chinese military writings made reference to attacks on ground-based space communications facilities.
“Chinese military writings advocate attacks on space-to ground communications links and ground-based satellite control facilities in the event of a conflict. Such facilities may be vulnerable,” the report noted, “In recent years, two U.S. government satellites have experienced interference apparently consistent with the cyber exploitation of their control facility.”
The report noted that some of the malicious cyber activity targeting the satellites involved NASA’s Terra EOS satellite being targeted in June 2008 and again in October 2008. The June incident resulted in the satellite being interfered with for two minutes and the October incident lasted at least nine minutes.
The report noted that in both instances, “The responsible party achieved all steps required to command the satellite but did not issue commands.”
NASA confirmed in a separate statement: “NASA experienced two suspicious events with the Terra spacecraft in the summer and fall of 2008. We can confirm that there was no manipulation of data, no commands were successfully sent to the satellite, and no data was captured. NASA notified the Department of Defense, which is responsible for investigating any attempted interference with satellite operations.”
The report noted that the Landsat-7 satellite operated by the U.S. Geological Survey experienced similar interference and events in 2007 and 2008 but added that the entity behind that incident did not achieve the ability to control the satellite.

Artist's rendering of the Terra Satellite (source: NASA)

The report mentions the serious implications the intrusions could have on the satellite systems, particularly if they were directed against more sensitive systems such as military or communications satellites.
“If executed successfully, such interference has the potential to pose numerous threats, particularly if achieved against satellites with more sensitive functions. For example, access to a satellite’s controls could allow an attacker to damage or destroy the satellite,” the report read.
“The attacker could also deny or degrade as well as forge or otherwise manipulate the satellite’s transmission,” the report added. “A high level of access could reveal the satellite’s capabilities or information, such as imagery, gained through its sensors. Opportunities may also exist to reconnoiter or compromise other terrestrial or space based networks used by the satellite.”
145  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Cyberwar and American Freedom on: December 13, 2011, 02:12:49 AM
JEFF ST. JOHN: NOVEMBER 21, 2011
Reports Claim First-Ever Cyber Attack on US Utility
The first cyber attack on utility infrastructure may have finally arrived via a hacked SCADA system and a broken-down water pump in rural Illinois.


We’ve been reporting for years how linking the internet to grid communications and control technology could open the country’s utilities to cyber attack. On Friday came reports of what may be the first such hack to cause physical damage to the country’s electric, water or gas infrastructure -- a burned-out water pump at a small utility in Illinois.

That’s not such a big deal in terms of damage caused. But if the report is true, it indicates that nefarious actors may have strung together several key stages of security vulnerabilities to infiltrate, then take control of, a piece of automated utility infrastructure -- and that could be a very big deal indeed.

Here’s the story. Earlier this month, workers at a small utility in central Illinois found a problem with the SCADA industrial controls that manage their water system, including a damaged water pump. An investigation by an IT services company found that the SCADA system had been hacked into by a computer in Russia, according to Joe Weiss, managing partner of cybersecurity firm Applied Control Solutions in Cupertino, Calif.

Weiss, who cited a report he said came from the Illinois Statewide Terrorism and Intelligence Center (ISTIC), said that unknown hackers had taken over control of the SCADA system and turned the pump on and off until it burned out. The hackers had apparently stolen entry credentials from a company that makes software to access the SCADA system -- and Weiss said the same hackers could be planning future attacks using the same means and methods.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has told multiple news agencies reporting on this matter that it has no evidence that indicates there is a risk to utilities or public safety. Still, DHS and the FBI are investigating the matter.

Breaking Down the Risks

We need to wait for more facts to emerge on this murky matter. But there’s no getting around the fact that security is a major challenge for utilities that are seeking to secure legacy control systems that are being hooked up to the internet for the first time. Let’s break down the alleged SCADA hack in Illinois, and see how it could have happened, taking as examples some of the cybersecurity problems that have been identified for utilities over the past few years.

First, where could potential attackers have found the credentials they needed to access a utility SCADA system? One significant possibility is that the hackers took advantage of poor human management of security by fooling employees into turning over critical passwords or other credential information that they could exploit. That kind of “social engineering” is still a key concern for utility security, and requires employee training as much as software expertise to prevent.

Human failures can also open newly networked utility systems to remote attacks. Tom Parker, vice president at computer security firm FusionX, showed at a Black Hat conference in August how he could use simple code and Google searches to theoretically take control of a water treatment facility’s remote terminal units (RTUs), particularly when the RTUs are protected by the password “1234” -- the easiest password to guess besides the word “password” itself.

Even if SCADA system operators aren’t using idiotic passwords and are taking proper measures to protect their security credentials, there are harder-to-prevent ways to pull access and security data out of them. One scary possibility is that the hackers had accessed the utility’s SCADA system for months beforehand, and are currently worming their way into others, using more sophisticated cyber-intrusion tools.

Worming Into SCADA Systems?

Take Duqu and Stuxnet -- two words that are probably meaningless to most people, but which strike fear into SCADA system operators around the world. First came Stuxnet, a virus that is believed to have been targeting Iran’s nuclear materials program by infecting Windows computers and thence infiltrating SCADA systems built by Siemens, all with the goal of causing malfunctions in uranium enrichment centrifuge equipment.

It was just about a year ago that cybersecurity experts first discovered Stuxnet, but it’s believed that the virus may have been introduced years beforehand -- meaning that SCADA systems around the world may be carrying a version of it right now. While the hope is that the virus was targeting only Iranian centrifuges, the idea that similar viruses could use the same techniques to do more damage remains high on the list of concerns for smart grid cybersecurity experts.

More recently, those concerns have refocused on a computer virus known as Duqu. Whether or not it’s related to Stuxnet remains a point of contention, but it appears to operate in a similar way, by exploiting a vulnerability in Windows to lodge itself inside servers and collect data passing through them, which could allow for espionage or gathering security data for further exploitation.

The Duqu virus has been shifting around the world, from India to Europe, Africa and Indonesia (and reportedly back to Iran), as security experts seek to track it down and eliminate it. While no exploitation has been found in the utility industry as of yet, its ability to infect Windows machines should give it access to almost any industry out there.

Using Controls to Wreak Havoc

Unfortunately, once hackers have gotten access to a SCADA system, there are plenty of actions they can take to damage the system they’ve hijacked. Back in 2007, reports emerged of a DHS experiment that showed how the control system of gas-fired generator at the Department of Energy’s Idaho National Lab could be hacked in a way that destroyed the generator, using a mock-up of a typical power plant’s control system.

The U.S. utility industry has had four years since that demonstration to try to fix any similar vulnerabilities in their power plant controls systems, but it’s unclear if they’ve made much progress. The North American Electricity Reliability Council (NERC), an industry group in charge of setting critical infrastructure protection (CIP) guidelines for U.S. and Canadian utilities, has just this year begun auditing utilities on the compliance they’ve been self-reporting over the past few years.

NERC recently held a grid security exercise for utilities seeking to comply with its “critical infrastructure protection” program, which might provide some examples of the security precautions that are being tackled.

While outside attacks are the subject of much of our recent worries, it was an inside job that gave the world a sense of just how much havoc a SCADA system takeover could wreak. In 2000, a disgruntled former employee of a Queensland, Australia water treatment plant decided to remotely access the system and release millions of gallons of sewage into nearby streams and parks. Though he served two years in jail for the act, that didn’t stop it from happening.

To guard against these kinds of attacks, experts recommend multiple layers of security to detect and prevent such unusual and knowingly self-destructive commands. Preventing intrusion is the first line of defense, but stopping an attack in progress will be equally important. After all, the IT industry’s experience with hackers has shown that it’s almost impossible to anticipate all the clever ways hackers are working on their next exploits.

There’s little doubt that U.S. national security officials are worried about the potential threats that could come from connecting SCADA systems to the internet. Will utilities decide to cope with the threat by unplugging those systems, thus essentially turning back the clock on the smart grid? Or will they be able to manage the new security challenges that come along with the benefits of networking and integrating the grid? Looks like we’ll be talking a lot more about these subjects, thanks to a broken-down water pump in Illinois.
146  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: December 13, 2011, 02:07:40 AM
Woof,
 Let's see if the State's are at the mercy of the distant, inept, and corrupt Federal government (exactly why the Revolutionary war was fought). The headline comes at the end: Kagan recluses herself!!!!


High court to review tough Arizona immigration law
By MARK SHERMAN | AP – 8 hrs ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court stepped into the fight Monday over a tough Arizona law that requires local police to help enforce federal immigration laws — pushing the court deeper into hot, partisan issues of the 2012 election campaign.
The court's election-year docket now contains three politically charged disputes, including President Barack Obama's health care overhaul and Texas redistricting.
The debate over immigration already is shaping presidential politics, and now the court is undertaking a review of an Arizona law that has spawned a host of copycat state laws targeting illegal immigrants.
The court will review a federal appeals court ruling that blocked several provisions in the Arizona law. One of those requires that police, while enforcing other laws, question a person's immigration status if officers suspect he is in the country illegally.
The case is the court's biggest foray into immigration law in decades, said Temple University law professor Peter Spiro, an expert in that area.
The Obama administration challenged the Arizona law by arguing that regulating immigration is the job of the federal government, not states. Similar laws in Alabama, South Carolina and Utah also are facing administration lawsuits. Private groups are suing over immigration measures adopted in Georgia and Indiana.
"This case is not just about Arizona. It's about every state grappling with the costs of illegal immigration," Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican, said following the court's announcement Monday.
Fifty-nine Republicans in Congress, including presidential candidate Michele Bachmann, filed a brief with the court backing the Arizona law.
The immigration case, like the challenge to Obama's health care overhaul, pits Republican-led states against the Democratic administration in an argument about the reach of federal power. The redistricting case has a similarly partisan tinge to it, with Republicans who control the state government in Texas facing off against Democrats and minority groups that tend vote Democratic.
In the immigration arena, the states say that the federal government isn't doing enough to address a major problem and that border states are suffering disproportionately.
The issue has been widely discussed by the Republican candidates for president. They have mostly embraced a hard line to avoid accusations that they support any kind of "amnesty" for the some 12 million illegal immigrants estimated to be living in the U.S.
Newt Gingrich was most recently criticized by his opponents for saying he would grant legal status to some with longstanding family and community ties, and Gingrich has since endorsed the South Carolina law that allows police to demand a person's immigration status. That law is among the four state laws that have been challenged by the administration.
Brewer signed the Arizona immigration measure into law in April 2010. The administration sued three months later to block it from taking effect.
In April, a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco upheld a federal judge's ruling halting enforcement of several provisions of the law. Among the blocked provisions: requiring all immigrants to obtain or carry immigration registration papers; making it a state criminal offense for an illegal immigrant to seek work or hold a job and allowing police to arrest suspected illegal immigrants without warrants.
In October, the federal appeals court in Atlanta blocked parts of the Alabama law that forced public schools to check the immigration status of students and allowed police to file criminal charges against people who were unable to prove their citizenship.
Lawsuits in South Carolina and Utah are not as far along.
The administration argued that the justices should have waited to see how other courts ruled on the challenges to other laws before getting involved. Still, following the court's announcement Monday, White House spokesman Jay Carney said, "We look forward to arguing our point of view in that case when the time comes."
Spiro, the Temple University immigration expert, said the court easily could have passed on the Arizona case for now. "They could have waited for the more extreme case to come from Alabama, which really outflanked the Arizona law," Spiro said.
He predicted the court would uphold the police check of immigration status but perhaps not the measure making it a crime to be without immigration documents.
Arguments probably will take place in late April, which would give the court roughly two months to decide the case
Justice Elena Kagan will not take part case, presumably because of her work on the issue when she served in the Justice Department in the Obama administration.
The case is Arizona v. U.S., 11-182.
147  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Corruption on: December 11, 2011, 07:25:34 PM
Woof,
 It certainly shows how our News Media and Press have completely failed us. I guess they think this kind of information is just more than we can understand. I'm just an ol' country boy from Kentucky and even I can grasp the highlights of this accounting. We the People had better wake up to what's going on here, GM is absolutely correct. This is Rome at the end of the Republic.
                                                 P.C.
148  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Original pdf file/Sold Out on: December 11, 2011, 04:57:46 PM
Woof,
 This url leads to the PDF file of all the information of the previous post's, and is easy to read. I'm leaving the other post's in, even though the formatting is poor, because the visual effect of scrolling down the list of the millions, even billions of dollars paid out by these failed companies to our politicans is just stunning and if the original is taken down for some reason, we'll still have the info here.

  www.wallstreetwatch.org/reports/sold_out.pdf
                                                  P.C.

  
149  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / For The Record/End on: December 11, 2011, 03:19:27 AM
Woof, 13th Post;

2008
Appendix
218
Accounting Firms: KPMG LLP
Decade-long campaign contribution total (1998-2008): $8,486,392
Decade-long lobbying expenditure total (1998-2008): $19,103,000
KPMG Campaign Contributions:277
2008 Top Recipients278
TOTAL: $1,746,293
1. Barack Obama (D) $67,500
2. Hillary Clinton (D) $40,900
3. John McCain (R) $22,490
4. Chris Dodd (D) $21,000
5. Elizabeth Dole (R) $12,300
6. Steve Chabot (R) $10,300
7. Jim Ryun (R) $10,300
8.
Michele Marie
Bachmann (R) $10,000
9. Melissa Bean (D) $10,000
9. Allen Boyd (D) $10,000
9. John Campbell (R) $10,000
9. Michael Castle (R) $10,000
9. James Clyburn (D) $10,000
9. Norm Coleman (R) $10,000
9. Susan Collins (R) $10,000
9. Mike Conaway (R) $10,000
9. John Cornyn (R) $10,000
9. Joseph Crowley (D) $10,000
9. Artur Davis (D) $10,000
277 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Campaign contribution totals accessed February
2009. Individual recipient numbers do
not include the 4th Quarter of 2008.
278 Based on highest 1,000 contributions and
PAC money.
9. Lincoln Davis (D) $10,000
9. Barney Frank (D) $10,000
9. Jim Gerlach (R) $10,000
9. Jeb Hensarling (R) $10,000
9. Michael Johanns (R) $10,000
9. Paul Kanjorski (D) $10,000
9. Ron Kind (D) $10,000
9. Ron Klein (D) $10,000
9. Tim Mahoney (D) $10,000
9. Carolyn Maloney (D) $10,000
9. Jim Marshall (D) $10,000
9. Jim Matheson (D) $10,000
9. Dennis Moore (D) $10,000
9. Chris Murphy (D) $10,000
9. Steve Pearce (R) $10,000
9. Edwin Perlmutter (D) $10,000
9. Charles Rangel (D) $10,000
9. Harry Reid (D) $10,000
9. Peter Roskam (R) $10,000
9. Ed Royce (R) $10,000
9. Paul Ryan (R) $10,000
9. David Scott (D) $10,000
9.
Christopher Shays
(R) $10,000
9. Lamar Smith (R) $10,000
9. John Tanner (D) $10,000
9. Mike Thompson (D) $10,000
Appendix 219
9. Melvin Watt (D) $10,000
2006 Top Recipients279
TOTAL: $1,320,683
1. Heather Wilson (R) $15,000
2. Max Baucus (D) $13,233
3. Chris Dodd (D) $13,000
3. James Talent (R) $13,000
5. Rick Santorum (R) $11,200
6. Patrick McHenry (R) $10,704
7. Spencer Bachus (R) $10,000
7. Roy Blunt (R) $10,000
7. Conrad Burns (R) $10,000
7. Eric Cantor (R) $10,000
7. Hillary Clinton (D) $10,000
7. Bob Corker (R) $10,000
7.
Michael Fitzpatrick
(R) $10,000
7. Barney Frank (D) $10,000
7. Jeb Hensarling (R) $10,000
7. Jon Kyl (R) $10,000
7. Jim Matheson (D) $10,000
7. Raymond Meier (R) $10,000
7. Dennis Moore (D) $10,000
7.
Marilyn Musgrave
(R) $10,000
7. Rick O'Donnell (R) $10,000
7. Rick Renzi (R) $10,000
7. Tom Reynolds (R) $10,000
7. David Scott (D) $10,000
7. E Clay Shaw Jr (R) $10,000
7. Gordon Smith (R) $10,000
7. Patrick Tiberi (R) $10,000
279 Based on highest 1,000 contributions and
PAC money.
2004 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,459,303
1. Charles Schumer (D) $32,000
2. Richard Shelby (R) $25,000
3. John Kerry (D) $22,750
4. Chris Dodd (D) $19,000
5. Peter Coors (R) $18,000
6. Mike Conaway (R) $16,000
7. James DeMint (R) $15,201
8. Richard Baker (R) $15,000
8. Jeb Hensarling (R) $15,000
10.
Christopher S 'Kit'
Bond (R) $12,000
10. George W Bush (R) $12,000
12. Gresham Barrett (R) $11,500
13. Mel Martinez (R) $11,000
14. Spencer Bachus (R) $10,000
14. Bob Beauprez (R) $10,000
14. Roy Blunt (R) $10,000
14. Eric Cantor (R) $10,000
14.
Shelley Moore Capito
(R) $10,000
14. Vito Fossella (R) $10,000
14. Katherine Harris (R) $10,000
14. Bill Jones (R) $10,000
14. Sue Kelly (R) $10,000
14. Michael Oxley (R) $10,000
14. Jim Ryun (R) $10,000
2002 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,740,139
1. Saxby Chambliss (R) $16,050
2. Mike Ferguson (R) $14,500
3. Norm Coleman (R) $12,500
3. Felix J Grucci Jr (R) $12,500
Appendix
220
5. Jim McCrery (R) $11,750
6. Phil Gramm (R) $11,000
7. Connie Morella (R) $10,450
8. Lamar Alexander (R) $10,250
8.
Charles "Chip"
Pickering Jr (R) $10,250
10. Roy Blunt (R) $10,000
10.
Shelley Moore Capito
(R) $10,000
10. Vito Fossella (R) $10,000
10. Robin Hayes (R) $10,000
10. Tim Hutchinson (R) $10,000
10. Chris John (D) $10,000
10. Sue Kelly (R) $10,000
10. Mark Kennedy (R) $10,000
10. Candice Miller (R) $10,000
10. Dennis Moore (D) $10,000
10. Michael Oxley (R) $10,000
10. Mike Rogers (R) $10,000
10. John Shadegg (R) $10,000
10. Rob Simmons (R) $10,000
10. John Sununu (R) $10,000
10. John Thune (R) $10,000
2000 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,371,159
1. George W Bush (R) $89,567
2. Charles Schumer (D) $42,948
3. Spencer Abraham (R) $14,999
4. Rick Lazio (R) $14,550
5. Chris Dodd (D) $14,000
6. George Allen (R) $10,943
7. William Roth Jr (R) $10,500
8. John Ashcroft (R) $10,000
8. Slade Gorton (R) $10,000
8. Rod Grams (R) $10,000
11. Rick Santorum (R) $9,000
12. Rudy Giuliani (R) $8,999
13. Conrad Burns (R) $8,500
14. David Phelps (D) $8,000
15. John Ensign (R) $7,775
16. James Rogan (R) $7,725
17. Dick Armey (R) $7,500
18. Jane Harman (D) $7,400
19. Al Gore (D) $7,300
20. Heather Wilson (R) $7,225
1998 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $848,815
1. Thomas Bliley Jr (R) $10,000
1. Billy Tauzin (R) $10,000
3. Barbara Mikulski (D) $8,219
4. Lauch Faircloth (R) $8,000
5. Ron Wyden (D) $7,795
6. Paul Coverdell (R) $7,500
7. Rick White (R) $6,225
8. Robert Bennett (R) $6,000
8. John Boehner (R) $6,000
8. Molly Bordonaro (R) $6,000
8. Heather Wilson (R) $6,000
12. Matt Fong (R) $5,750
13. Don Nickles (R) $5,500
14. Alfonse D'Amato (R) $5,300
15. Dick Armey (R) $5,000
15. Brian Bilbray (R) $5,000
15. Jim Bunning (R) $5,000
15. Christopher Cox (R) $5,000
15. Tom DeLay (R) $5,000
15. Peter Fitzgerald (R) $5,000
Appendix 221
15. Newt Gingrich (R) $5,000
15. Trent Lott (R) $5,000
15. Bill Redmond (R) $5,000
Appendix
222
KPMG Lobbying Expenses:280
2008
TOTAL: $2,985,000
KPMG LLP $2,525,000
KPMG LLP > $10,000*
Velasquez Group $200,000
Public Strategies $130,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Clark & Assoc $50,000
Mayer, Brown et al > $10,000*
2007
TOTAL: $2,590,000
KPMG LLP $2,130,000
KPMG LLP > $10,000*
Velasquez Group $180,000
Public Strategies $120,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
2006
TOTAL: $2,190,000
KPMG LLP $1,650,000
KPMG LLP $40,000
Velasquez Group $180,000
Public Strategies $120,000
Mayer, Brown et al $80,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
280 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Lobbying amounts accessed February 2009.
* Not included in totals
2005
TOTAL: $1,210,000
KPMG LLP $890,000
KPMG LLP $40,000
Public Strategies $120,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Velasquez Group $40,000
2004
TOTAL: $1,838,000
KPMG LPP $1,368,000
KPMG LPP $60,000
KPMG LPP > $10,000*
Clark & Weinstock $200,000
Velasquez Group $140,000
Public Strategies $50,000
Clark & Assoc $20,000
2003
TOTAL: $1,575,000
KPMG LLP $925,000
KPMG LLP > $10,000*
KPMG LLP $180,000
Clark & Weinstock $180,000
Velasquez Group $160,000
Public Strategies $90,000
McGovern & Smith $40,000
Clark & Assoc > $10,000*
* Not included in totals
Appendix 223
2002
TOTAL: $1,850,000
KPMG LLP $1,430,000
KPMG LLP $40,000
KPMG LLP $60,000
KPMG LLP $10,000
Public Strategies $160,000
Clark & Weinstock $100,000
McGovern & Smith $20,000
Capitol Tax Partners $20,000
Thelen, Reid et al $10,000
Clark & Assoc > $10,000*
2001
TOTAL: $1,455,000
KPMG LLP $1,175,000
KPMG LLP > $10,000*
KPMG LLP $80,000
Public Strategies $120,000
Palmetto Group $80,000
2000
TOTAL: $1,580,000
KPMG LLP $1,340,000
KPMG LLP $80,000
Palmetto Group $100,000
Mayer, Brown et al $60,000
1999
TOTAL: $1,190,000
KPMG LLP $850,000
Palmetto Group $280,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
* Not included in totals
Spectrum Group $20,000
1998
TOTAL: $640,000
KPMG LLP $600,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
Spectrum Group > $10,000*
* Not included in totals
Appendix
224
KPMG Covered Official Lobbyists:281
Firm / Name of Lobbyist Covered Official Position Year(s)
Clark & Assoc.
Sam Geduldig Dir of Coalitions, House Fin. Serv Comm. 2007-2008
Sr Advisor, Majority Whip Roy Blunt
Clark & Weinstock
Ed Kutler Asst, Office of Speaker, House of Reps 2007-2008
Asst, House Republican Whip
Johathan Schwantes Gen Counsel, Senate Judiciary Comm 2007-2008
Sandra Stuart Asst Sec for Legislative Affairs, DoD 2008
Chief of Staff, Rep. Vic Fazio
Vin Weber Member of Congress (MN) 2007-2008
Margaret McGlinch Chief of Staff, Rep. Tim Walz 2008
Legislative Dir, Rep. Richard Neal
Legislative Counsel, Sen. Harry Reid
Kent Bonham Policy Dir, Sen Chuck Hagel 2002-2003
Juleanna Glover Weiss Press Secretary, Vice President 2002-2003
Brian Bieron Policy Director, House Rulse Comm. 2002
Timothy Morrison Assoc Dir, Presidential Personnel 2002
Anne Urban Legislative Dir, Sen. Robert Kerrey 2002
Capital Tax Partners
William Fant Deputy Asst Sc for Leg Affairs, Treasury 2002-2003
Joseph Mikrut Tax Legislative Counsel, Treasury 2002-2003
Jonathan Talisman Asst Treasury Secretary for Tax Policy 2002-2003
Public Strategies, Inc
Wallace Henderson Counsel, Rep. Tauzin 2001-2002
Mayer, Brown & Platt
Jeffrey Lewis Legislative Asst, Sen. Breaux 1999-2000
281Source: Senate Office of Public Records <http://soprweb.senate.gov/>. Accessed January 2009.
Appendix 225
Accounting Firms: Pricewaterhouse
Decade-long campaign contribution total (1998-2008): $10,800,772
Decade-long lobbying expenditure total (1998-2008): $44,291,084
Pricewaterhouse Campaign
Contributions:282
2008 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $2,652,971
1. Barack Obama (D) $205,318
2. Hillary Clinton (D) $190,200
3. John McCain (R) $166,970
4. Mitt Romney (R) $90,150
5. Chris Dodd (D) $64,800
6. Rudy Giuliani (R) $16,250
7. Susan M Collins (R) $16,100
8. Norm Coleman (R) $13,050
9. Elizabeth Dole (R) $12,000
10. Steny H Hoyer (D) $11,000
11. Dean F Andal (R) $10,500
11. Mike Conaway (R) $10,500
13. Keith S Fimian (R) $10,200
14. John Edwards (D) $10,100
15.
Michele Marie
Bachmann (R) $10,000
15. Spencer Bachus (R) $10,000
15. Max Baucus (D) $10,000
15. Melissa Bean (D) $10,000
15. Judy Biggert (R) $10,000
282 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Campaign contribution totals accessed February
2009. Individual recipient numbers do
not include the 4th Quarter of 2008.
15. John Boehner (R) $10,000
2006 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,388,604
1. Tom Davis (R) $71,208
2. Mark Kennedy (R) $35,600
3. Rick Santorum (R) $23,546
4. Richard Baker (R) $23,488
5. Tom Carper (D) $20,499
6. Spencer Bachus (R) $20,000
7. Joe Lieberman (I) $17,000
8. Deborah Pryce (R) $14,750
9. Mike Ferguson (R) $14,150
10. George Allen (R) $13,850
11. James M Talent (R) $13,000
12. Mike DeWine (R) $11,600
13.
Michael Fitzpatrick
(R) $11,000
13. Jon Kyl (R) $11,000
15. Tom DeLay (R) $10,500
16. Barney Frank (D) $10,250
16. Nancy L Johnson (R) $10,250
16. Tom Reynolds (R) $10,250
16.
Christopher Shays
(R) $10,250
20. E Clay Shaw Jr (R) $10,204
Appendix
226
2004 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,882,353
1. George W. Bush (R) $513,750
2. John Kerry (D) $73,000
3. Richard C Shelby (R) $61,250
4. Michael G Oxley (R) $50,550
5. Charles Schumer (D) $27,476
6. Mike Conaway (R) $17,000
7. James W DeMint (R) $12,500
8. Arlen Specter (R) $12,350
9. Chuck Grassley (R) $12,000
9. Scott Paterno (R) $12,000
9. John Thune (R) $12,000
12. Johnny Isakson (R) $11,000
13. Mark Kennedy (R) $10,500
14. Spencer Bachus (R) $10,000
14. Richard Baker (R) $10,000
14. Roy Blunt (R) $10,000
14. Max Burns (R) $10,000
18. Rick Renzi (R) $10,000
19. Richard Burr (R) $9,750
20. Eric Cantor (R) $9,500
2002 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,357,480
1. Norm Coleman (R) $13,500
2. Roy Blunt (R) $11,000
3. Connie Morella (R) $10,750
4. John E Sununu (R) $10,500
5. Dennis Hastert (R) $10,000
5. Mark Kennedy (R) $10,000
5. Michael G Oxley (R) $10,000
8. James M Talent (R) $9,950
9. Elizabeth Dole (R) $9,500
9. John Thune (R) $9,500
11. Max Baucus (D) $9,000
12. Phil Crane (R) $8,566
13. Tim Hutchinson (R) $8,000
14. Ken Lucas (D) $7,950
15. Susan M Collins (R) $7,750
16. Wayne Allard (R) $7,500
16. Jim Mcrery (R) $7,500
16. Dennis Moore (D) $7,500
19. Robin Hayes (R) $7,000
19. William Jefferson (D) $7,000
2000 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,868,674
1. George W Bush (R) $131,798
2. Rick A Lazio (R) $53,086
3. Bill Bradley (D) $51,550
4. Rudy Giuliani (R) $41,150
5. Charles Schumer (D) $33,974
6. Spencer Abraham (R) $29,550
7. Al Gore (D) $23,630
8. John McCain (R) $19,080
9. John Ashcroft(R) $12,500
10. Edward Kennedy (D) $12,250
11. James E Rogan (R) $11,950
11. William Roth Jr (R) $11,950
13. Chris Dodd (D) $11,750
14. Ernie Fletcher (R) $11,000
15.
Steven Kuykendall
(R) $10,750
16. E Clay Shaw Jr (R) $10,270
17. Rod Grams (R) $10,000
17. Dennis Hastert (R) $10,000
17. Billy Tauzin (R) $10,000
20. Sherrod Brown (D) $9,999
Appendix 227
1998 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,650,690
1. Alfonse D'Amato (R) $25,970
2. Chris Dodd (D) $17,800
3.
George Voinovich
(R) $15,500
3. Billy Tauzin (R) $15,000
5. Lauch Faircloth (R) $14,000
5. Martin Frost (D) $14,000
7. Sherrod Brown (D) $13,948
8. Rick White (R) $13,825
9. Newt Gingrich (R) $13,800
10. Paul Coverdell (R) $13,500
10. Anna Eshoo(D) $13,500
10. Ron Wyden (D) $13,500
13. Robert F Bennett (R) $13,000
13. Matt Fong (R) $13,000
15. Thomas Bliley Jr. (R) $12,500
16. Michael Coles (D) $11,750
17.
Christopher S 'Kit'
Bond (R) $11,500
18. Don Nickles (R) $11,000
19. Harry Reid (D) $10,000
20. Christopher Cox (R) $9,111
Appendix
228
Pricewaterhouse Lobbying
Expenditures:283
2008
TOTAL: $3,165,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $2,340,000
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $370,000
Rich Feuer Group $160,000
American Capitol Group $125,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Clark & Assoc $50,000
Commonwealth Group > $10,000*
Covington & Burling > $10,000*
Donna McLean Assoc > $10,000*
Mayer, Brown et al > $10,000*
Patton Boggs LLP > $10,000*
Cypress Advocacy $40,000
2007
TOTAL: $3,630,584
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $2,650,584
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $600,000
Rich Feuer Group $80,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
American Capitol Group $60,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Donna McLean Assoc $40,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
Patton Boggs LLP $40,000
283 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Lobbying amounts accessed February 2009.
* Not included in totals
2006
TOTAL: $4,413,500
PriceWaterHouseCoopers $3,333,500
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $600,000
Patton Boggs LLP $240,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Mayer, Brown et al $80,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Donna McLean Assoc $40,000
2005
TOTAL: $13,600,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $12,580,000
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $600,000
Patton Boggs LLP $200,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Thelen, Redi & Priest $60,000
Donna McLean Assoc $40,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
2004
TOTAL: $2,505,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $1,660,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers > $10,000*
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $580,000
Thelen, Reid & Priest $105,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Public Strategies $40,000
Donna McLean Assoc $20,000
Clark & Assoc $20,000
* Not included in totals
Appendix 229
2003
TOTAL: $2,390,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $1,680,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers > $10,000*
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $560,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Thelen, Reid & Priest $70,000
Clark & Assoc > $10,000*
2002
TOTAL: $4,445,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $3,160,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $155,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $260,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers > $10,000*
Alcalde & Fay $200,000
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $540,000
Clark & Weinstock $100,000
Arnold & Porter $20,000
Thelen, Reid et al $10,000
Clark & Assoc > $10,000*
2001
TOTAL: $4,560,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $1,240,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $560,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $700,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $840,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $120,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $360,000
Alcalde & Fay $220,000
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $460,000
Cathy Abernathy Consult. $60,000
* Not included in totals
2000
TOTAL: $2,186,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $580,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $800,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $360,000
Quinn, Gillespie & Assoc $350,000
Mayer, Brown et al $60,000
Fleishman-Hillard Inc $36,000
Downey-McGrath Group > $10,000*
Alcalde & Fay > $10,000*
1999
TOTAL: $2,316,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $1,220,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $1,000,000
Mayer, Brown et al. $40,000
Fleishman-Hillard Inc $36,000
McDonald, Jack H $20,000
Dierman, Wortley et al > $10,000*
Downey McGrath Group > $10,000*
1998
TOTAL: $1,080,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $620,000
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $60,000
Coopers & Lybrand $340,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
Downey Chandler Inc $20,000
* Not included in totals
Appendix
230
Pricewaterhouse Covered Official Lobbyists:284
Firm / Name of Lobbyist Covered Official Position Year(s)
PWC Leasing Corp.
Barabara M. Angus
Business Tax Counsel, Joint Committee on
Taxation 1999
Kenneth J. Kies Chief of Staff, Joint Committee on Taxation 1999
Mayer, Brown, & Platt
Jeffery Lewis Legislative Assitant to Senator Breaux 1999-2000
Quinn Gillespie Associates
LLC
John M. Quinn White House Counsel, Chief of Staff to VP 2000
Bruce Andrews Legislative Director, Rep. Tim Holden 2000
Section 170 Coalition
Tim Hanford
Tax Counsel, Committee on Ways and
Means 2001
PwC Structured Finance
Coalition
Tim Hanford
Tax Counsel, Committee on Ways and
Means 2001
John Meager
Special Counsel, Committee on Ways and
Means 2001
PwC Leasing Coalition
Tim Hanford
Tax Counsel, Committee on Ways and
Means 2001
Dierman, Wortley et al
Norman D'Amours Chairman National Credit Union Admin 2002
Clark & Weinstock
Brian Bieron Policy Director, House Rules Committee 2002
284 Source: Senate Office of Public Records <http://soprweb.senate.gov/>. Accessed January 2009.
Appendix 231
Kent Bonham Policy Director for Sen. Chuck Hagel 2002-2003
Juleanna Glover Weiss Press Secretary to the Vice President 2002-2003
Jonathan Schwantes
General Counsel, Senate Judiciary Committee
2007
Pricewaterhouse Coopers
Beverly Bell Administrative Assistant, Rep. Don Johnson 2003
Amy Best Deputy Director of Public Affairs 2005-2006
Laura Cox Managing Executive External Affairs 2005-2006
Michael O'Brien Legislative Affairs Specialist 2005-2006
Donna Mclean Assoc.
Donna Mclean
US Dept. of Transportation, Asst Sec for
Budeget & Programs & CFO 2004-2006
Quinn Gillespie Associates
LLC
Mike Hacker Communications Dir. (Rep. John Dingell) 2004-2005
Amy Cunniffe Special Asst. to the Pres for Leg. Affairs 2005-2006
Elizabeth Hogan Speical Asst, Dept of Commerce 2005-2006
Kevin Kayes Chief Counsel Senator Reid 2006-2007
Allison Giles
Chief of Staff, House Ways and Means
Committee 2007
Christopher Mccannell Chief of Staff, Congressman Joe Crowley 2007
Patton Boggs LLP
Stephen Mchale Deputy Administrator, TSA 2005
Clark, Lytle, & Geduldig
Sam Geduldig Dir of Coalitions, House Fin Serv Com 2007-2008
Sr Advisor, Majority Whip Roy Blunt 2007-2008Gr

 I just wanted to get all this in the record.
                              P.C.
150  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Corruption on: December 11, 2011, 03:16:05 AM
Woof, 12th Post;

190
Hedge Funds: Farallon Capital Management
Decade-long campaign contribution total (1998-2008): $1,058,953
Decade-long lobbying expenditure total (1998-2008): $1,005,000
Farallon Campaign Contributions:261
2008 All Recipients
TOTAL: $372,863
1. Hillary Clinton (D) $94,600
2. Barack Obama (D) $15,550
3. David Obey (D) $13,800
3. Chris Dodd (D) $13,800
4. Rahm Emanuel (D) $10,200
5. John McCain (R) $8,900
6. Howard Berman (D) $8,600
7. John Thune (R) $7,100
8. Tim Johnson (D) $4,600
8. Gary Trauner (D) $4,600
9. Mark Warner (D) $3,300
10. Donna Edwards (D) $2,000
11. Charles Rangel (D) $1,000
12. Allyson Schwartz (D) $500
13. Mitt Romney (R) $250
2006 All Recipients
TOTAL: $328,890
1. Hillary Clinton (D) $33,190
2. Kent Conrad (D) $8,400
261 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Campaign contribution totals accessed February
2009. Individual recipient numbers do
not include the 4th Quarter of 2008.
3. Rahm Emanuel (D) $8,000
4. Evan Bayh (D) $6,300
5. John Thune (R) $4,400
6. Judy Aydelott (D) $4,200
6. John Hall (D) $4,200
8. Joe Sestak (D) $2,100
8. Ken Lucas (D) $2,100
8. Chris Carney (D) $2,100
8. Michael Arcuri (D) $2,100
8. Edwin Perlmutter (D) $2,100
8. Charles Brown (D) $2,100
8. Chris Murphy (D) $2,100
15. Dianne Feinstein (D) $1,000
15. Howard Berman (D) $1,000
16. Patrick Murphy (D) $500
2004 All Recipients
TOTAL: $233,950
1. John Kerry (D) $14,000
2. Tom Daschle (D) $9,250
3. Russell Feingold (D) $4,000
3. Chris John (D) $4,000
3. Tony Knowles (D) $4,000
3. Brad Carson (D) $4,000
7. Lisa Quigley (D) $2,500
8. Erskine Bowles (D) $2,000
8. Howard Dean (D) $2,000
Appendix 191
8. Ken Salazar (D) $2,000
8. Inez Tenenbaum (D) $2,000
8. Joe Lieberman (D) $2,000
8. Harold Ford, Jr (D) $2,000
8. Betty Castor (D) $2,000
15. Rob Bishop (R) $1,200
16. Robert Bennett (R) $1,000
17. Jamie Metzl (D) $500
2002 All Recipients
TOTAL: $97,250
1. John Kerry (D) $17,000
2. Tom Daschle (D) $7,500
3. John P Murtha (D) $4,000
4. Howard Berman (D) $2,500
5. Robert Bennett (R) $1,000
5. Rahm Emanuel (D) $1,000
5. Howard Berman (D) $1,000
5. John Thune (R) $1,000
9.
Steven Peter Andreasen
(D) $750
2000 All Recipients
TOTAL: $18,500
1. Norm Dicks (D) $9,000
2. Bill Bradley (D) $5,000
3. John McCain (R) $1,000
3. Ed Bernstein (D) $1,000
3. Nancy Pelosi (D) $1,000
1998 All Recipients
TOTAL: $7,500
1. John McCain (R) $1,000
1. Matt Fong (R) $1,000
3. Dick Lane (D) $750
4. Matt Fong (R) $250
Appendix
192
Farallon Lobbying Expenses:262
2004-2008
N/A
2003
TOTAL: $310,000
Timmons & Co. $310,000
2002
TOTAL: $335,000
Timmons & Co. $335,000
2001
TOTAL: $360,000
Fleischman & Walsh $40,000
Timmons & Co. $320,000
1998-2000
N/A
262 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Lobbying amounts accessed February 2009.
Appendix 193
Farallon Covered Official Lobbyists:263
Firm / Name of Lobbyist Covered Position Year(s)
Fleischman & Walsh
Louis Dupart
Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust,
Business Rights & Competition
2001,
2003-2005
Timmons & Co.
Richard Tarplin Asst Secretary for Legislation, Dept of HHS 2001-2004
263 Source: Senate Office of Public Records <http://soprweb.senate.gov/>. Accessed January 2009.
Appendix
194
Hedge Funds: Och-Ziff Capital Management
Decade-long campaign contribution total (1998-2008): $338,552
Decade-long lobbying expenditure total (1998-2008): $200,000
Och-Ziff Campaign Contributions:264
2008 All Recipients
TOTAL: $106,300
1. Mark Pryor (D) $11,500
2. Barack Obama (D) $7,900
3. Hillary Clinton (D) $6,800
4. John Thune (R) $4,600
5. Mitt Romney (R) $2,300
5. Eric Cantor (R) $2,300
7. Rahm Emanuel (D) $1,000
7. Norm Coleman (R) $1,000
7. Joe Biden (D) $1,000
2006 All Recipients
TOTAL: $82,650
1.
Sheldon Whitehouse
(D) $3,000
2. Olympia Snowe (R) $2,000
2. James Talent (R) $2,000
2. George Allen (R) $2,000
5. Mitch McConnell (R) $1,000
5. Eric Cantor (R) $1,000
5. Rahm Emanuel (D) $1,000
5. Robert Menendez (D) $1,000
264 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Campaign contribution totals accessed February
2009. Individual recipient numbers do
not include the 4th Quarter of 2008.
5. Jon Kyl (R) $1,000
5. Bill Nelson (D) $1,000
11. Chris Shays (R) $250
2004 All Recipients
TOTAL: $95,002
1. John Kerry (D) $14,802
2. Tom Daschle (D) $3,000
2. Charles Schumer (D) $3,000
4. Evan Bayh (D) $2,000
4. Steny Hoyer (D) $2,000
4. Charles Rangel (D) $2,000
4. Rahm Emanuel (D) $2,000
4. Barack Obama (D) $2,000
4. Joe Lieberman (D) $2,000
10. Patty Murray (D) $1,000
10. Barbara Boxer (D) $1,000
10. James DeMint (R) $1,000
10. John McCain (R) $1,000
10. Jamie Metzl (D) $1,000
10. Peter Deutsch (D) $1,000
10. Daniel Inouye (D) $1,000
10. Denise Majette (D) $1,000
Appendix 195
2002 All Recipients
TOTAL: $26,600
1. Charles Schumer (D) $3,000
2. Denise Majette (D) $2,000
3. Tom Harkin (D) $1,000
3. Arlen Specter (R) $1,000
2000 All Recipients
TOTAL: $26,000
1. Charles Schumer (D) $8,000
2. Hillary Clinton (D) $2,000
3. Conrad Burns (R) $1,000
1998 All Recipients
TOTAL: $2,000
1. Charles Schumer (D) $1,000
1. Russell Feingold $1,000
Appendix
196
Och-Ziff Lobbying Expenses:265
2007-2008
N/A
2006
TOTAL: $40,000
Navigant Consulting $40,000
2005
TOTAL: $80,000
Navigant Consulting $80,000
2004
TOTAL: $60,000
Navigant Consulting $60,000
2003
TOTAL: $20,000
Navigant Consulting $20,000
1998-2002
N/A
Och-Ziff Covered Official Lobbyists:
N/A
265 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Lobbying amounts accessed February 2009.
Appendix 197
Hedge Funds: Renaissance Technologies
Decade-long campaign contribution total (1998-2008): $1,560,895
Decade-long lobbying expenditure total (1998-2008): $740,000
Renaissance Campaign Contributions:266
2008 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $721,250
1. Hillary Clinton (D) $59,600
2. Barack Obama (D) $39,250
3. Chris Dodd (D) $16,450
4. Timothy Bishop (D) $12,000
5. Tom McClintock (R) $6,900
6. Jeff Merkley (D) $6,100
7. John McCain (R) $5,100
8. Rudy Giuliani (R) $4,850
9. Nancy Pelosi (D) $4,600
9. Charles Rangel (D) $4,600
9. Sean Parnell (R) $4,600
9. Steve Pearce (R) $4,600
9. Steve Israel (D) $4,600
9. Gary Ackerman (D) $4,600
15. Scott Kleeb (D) $2,300
15. Jeanne Shaheen (D) $2,300
15. Gabrielle Giffords (D) $2,300
15. Harry Mitchell (D) $2,300
15. Bob Lord (D) $2,300
15. Ann Kirkpatrick (D) $2,300
266 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Campaign contribution totals accessed February
2009. Individual recipient numbers do
not include the 4th Quarter of 2008.
15. Dina Titus (D) $2,300
15. Bart Gordon (D) $2,300
15. Dan Maffei (D) $2,300
15. Jerry McNerney (D) $2,300
15. Rahm Emanuel (D) $2,300
15. Steve Buehrer (R) $2,300
15. Andy Harris (R) $2,300
15. Paul Broun Jr (R) $2,300
15. Bob Schaffer (R) $2,300
15. Charlie Ross (R) $2,300
15. Woody Jenkins (R) $2,300
15.
Christopher L Hackett
(R) $2,300
15. Kirsten Gillibrand (D) $2,300
2006 All Recipients
TOTAL: $364,700
1. Hillary Clinton (D) $21,125
2. Timothy Bishop (D) $4,200
2. Chris Dodd (D) $4,200
2. Michael McGavick (R) $4,200
2. Ben Cardin (D) $4,200
6. Steve Israel (D) $4,100
7. John Yarmuth (D) $2,100
7. Michael Steele (R) $2,100
7. John Gard (R) $2,100
Appendix
198
7. Michael Bouchard (R) $2,100
7. Sharron Angle (R) $2,100
7. Adrian Smith (R) $2,100
7. Rick O'Donnell (R) $2,100
7. William Sali (R) $2,100
7. Chris Chocola (R) $2,100
16. John Sununu (R) $2,000
17. Francine Busby (D) $1,000
17. Claire McCaskill (D) $1,000
17. Debbie Stabenow (D) $1,000
20. Kirsten Gillibrand (D) $500
20. Scott Kleeb (D) $500
20. Tammy Duckworth (D) $500
2004 All Recipients
TOTAL: $239,950
1. John Kerry (D) $8,200
2. Timothy Bishop (D) $7,500
2. Hillary Clinton (D) $7,500
4. George Bush (R) $4,000
5. Betty Castor (D) $2,000
5. Joe Lieberman (D) $2,000
5. Michael Oxley (R) $2,000
5. Steve Israel (D) $2,000
9. Stephanie Herseth (D) $1,000
9. Patricia Lamarch (3) $1,000
11. Howard Dean (D) $550
12. Inez Tenenbaum (D) $500
12. Daniel Montiardo (D) $500
12. Allyson Schwartz (D) $500
12. Tom Daschle (D) $500
2002 All Recipients
TOTAL: $92,445
1. Charles Schumer (D) $15,000
2.
Vivian Viloria-Fisher
(D) $4,000
3. Steve Israel (D) $2,000
3. Denise Majette (D) $2,000
5. Hillary Clinton (D) $1,000
5. Frank Lautenberg (D) $1,000
7.
Jill Long Thompson
(D) $300
8.
Martha Fuller Clark
(D) $250
8. Carol Roberts (D) $250
8. Stephanie Herseth (D) $250
8. Jim Maloney (D) $250
8. Rick Larsen (D) $250
8. Rush Holt (D) $250
8. Jay Inslee (D) $250
2000 All Recipients
TOTAL: $49,550
1. Hillary Clinton (D) $14,700
2. John McCain (R) $1,000
2. Bill Bradley (D) $1,000
1998 All Recipients
TOTAL: $93,000
1. Charles Schumer (D) $4,000
Appendix 199
Renaissance Lobbying Expenditures:267
2008
TOTAL: >$10,000*
E-Copernicus > $10,000*
2005-2006
N/A
2004
TOTAL: $200,000
Liz Robbins Assoc. $200,000
2003
TOTAL: $220,000
Liz Robbins Assoc. $220,000
2002
TOTAL: $220,000
Liz Robbins Assoc. $220,000
2001
TOTAL: $100,000
Liz Robbins Assoc. $100,000
1998-2000
N/A
Renaissance Official Covered Lobbyists:
N/A
267 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Lobbying amounts accessed February 2009.
* Not included in totals
Appendix
200
Accounting Firms: Arthur Andersen
Decade-long campaign contribution total (1998-2008): $3,324,175
Decade-long lobbying expenditure total (1998-2008): $1,900,000
Arthur Andersen
Campaign Contributions:268
2006-2008
N/A
2004 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $86,586
1. George W Bush (R) $12,950
2. John Edwards (D) $7,000
3. John Kerry (D) $6,750
4. George Allen (R) $1,000
4. Orrin G Hatch (R) $1,000
4. Paul Kanjorski (D) $1,000
4. Jim Moran (D) $1,000
4. David Vitter (R) $1,000
9. Bob Graham (D) $500
9. Nancy Johnson (R) $500
9. Pete Sessions (R) $500
12. Barack Obama (D) $300
13. Mike Ferguson (R) $250
13. Barbara Mikulski (D) $250
13.
George Nethercutt Jr
(R) $250
13. Earl Pomeroy (D) $250
13. David Scott (D) $250
268 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Campaign contribution totals accessed February
2009.
2002 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $705,263
1. Rahm Emanuel (D) $11,250
2. Billy Tauzin (R) $10,000
3. Tom Harkin (D) $9,000
4. Wayne Allard (R) $7,500
5. Ron Wyden (D) $7,050
6. Mike Ferguson (R) $6,950
7. Max Baucus (D) $6,500
7. Walter B Jones Jr (R) $6,500
9. Ken Bentsen (D) $6,250
10. Jim McCrery (R) $6,000
10.
Charles "Chip"
Pickering Jr (R) $6,000
12. Christopher Cox (R) $5,500
13. Dick Armey (R) $5,335
14. John Shadegg (R) $5,250
15. Martin Frost (D) $5,000
15. Dennis Hastert (R) $5,000
15. Jim Moran (D) $5,000
15. Harry Reid (D) $5,000
19. Dennis Moore (D) $4,750
20. Vito Fosella (R) $4,500
Appendix 201
2000 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,564,270
1. George W Bush (R) $150,900
2. Rick A Lazio (R) $44,550
3. Charles Schumer (D) $34,334
4. Bill Bradley (D) $30,600
5. Jon Kyl (R) $20,101
6. Al Gore (D) $19,350
7. Spencer Abraham (R) $17,650
8. John Ensign (R) $17,000
9. John McCain (R) $14,750
10. John Ashcroft (R) $11,500
11. Chris Dodd (D) $10,500
12. Mel Carnahan (D) $9,000
12. Billy Tauzin (R) $9,000
14. E Clay Shaw Jr (R) $8,500
15. Rudy Giuliani (R) $8,250
16. Rod Grams (R) $8,199
17. Lamar Alexander (R) $8,000
17. Cal Dooley (D) $8,000
19. Peter Fitzgerald (R) $7,565
20. George Allen (R) $7,500
1998 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $968,056
1. Alfonse D'Amato (R) $27,000
2. Evan Bayh (D) $13,750
3. Matt Fong (R) $13,536
4. Paul Coverdell (R) $10,700
5. Ron Wyden (D) $10,650
6.
Carol Moseley Braun
(D) $9,750
7. Peter Fitzgerald (R) $9,350
8. John Ensign (R) $8,350
9.
George Voinovich
(R) $8,250
10. Sherrod Brown (D) $8,187
11. Lauch Faircloth (R) $8,000
11. Billy Tauzin (R) $8,000
13. Robert F Bennett (R) $7,805
14. Joe Barton (R) $7,500
15. Fritz Holings (D) $7,460
16.
Leslie Ann Touma
(R) $7,250
17. Rick White (R) $7,200
18. Barbara Mikulski (D) $7,000
19. Jim Bunning (R) $6,874
20.
Christopher S 'Kit'
Bond (R) $6,250
Appendix
202
Arthur Andersen Lobbying
Expenditures:269
1999-2008
N/A
1998
TOTAL: $1,900,000
Arthur Andersen & Co $1,600,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $120,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
OB-C Group $140,000
269 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Lobbying amounts accessed February 2009.
Appendix 203
Arthur Andersen Covered Official Lobbyists:270
Firm / Name of Lobbyist Covered Official Position Year (s)
Mayer, Brown et al
Rothfeld, Charles A
House Sub Comm on Select US Role/Iranian
Arms Transfers to Croatia & Bosnia 1998
OB-C Group
Mellody, Charles J Aide, House Ways & Means Comm. 1998
270 Source: Senate Office of Public Records <http://soprweb.senate.gov/>. Accessed January 2009.
Appendix
204
Accounting Firms: Deloitte & Touche
Decade-long campaign contribution total (1998-2008): $12,120,340
Decade-long lobbying expenditure total (1998-2008): $19,606,455
Deloitte Campaign Contributions:271
2008 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $2,420,112
1. Barack Obama (D) $177,598
2. John McCain (R) $90,850
3. Hillary Clinton (D) $68,300
4. Mitt Romney (R) $58,550
5. Chris Dodd (D) $51,250
6. Norm Coleman (R) $26,750
7. Rudy Giuliani (R) $24,800
8. Christopher Shays (R) $21,800
9. Saxby Chambliss (R) $12,300
10. Max Baucus (D) $11,000
10. Barney Frank (D) $11,000
10. Michael McCaul (R) $11,000
13. Mike Conaway (R) $10,500
13. Vito Fossella (R) $10,500
15. Spencer Bachus (R) $10,000
15. Roy Blunt (R) $10,000
15. John Boehner (R) $10,000
15. Allen Boyd (D) $10,000
15. John Campbell (R) $10,000
15. Chris Cannon (R) $10,000
271 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Campaign contribution totals accessed February
2009. Individual recipient numbers do
not include the 4th Quarter of 2008.
2006 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $2,180,294
1. Mark Kennedy (R) $42,100
2. Spencer Bachus (R) $32,500
3. Chris Dodd (D) $29,000
4.
Christopher Shays
(R) $22,900
5. Richard Baker (R) $20,921
6. Tom Price (R) $20,000
7. Sherrod Brown (D) $19,160
8. Vito Fossella (R) $18,400
9. Henry Bonilla (R) $18,000
10. Hillary Clinton (D) $17,970
11. Rick Santorum (R) $16,950
12. John Campbell (R) $16,500
13. Jon Kyl (R) $14,600
14. George Allen (R) $14,000
15. Joe Lieberman ( I) $13,500
16. Daniel K Akaka (D) $13,000
17. Deborah Pryce (R) $12,498
18. Eric Cantor (R) $12,000
18. David Dreier (R) $12,000
18. Ben Nelson (D) $12,000
Appendix 205
2004 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $2,233,483
1. George W Bush (R) $290,450
2. John Kerry (D) $73,152
3. Charles Schumer (D) $39,999
4. Richard C Shelby (R) $28,500
5. Chris Dodd (D) $27,750
6. Vito Fossella (R) $23,300
7. Mark Kennedy (R) $19,700
8. John Thune (R) $15,450
9.
Robert "Bob"
Conaway (D) $15,000
10. James W DeMint (R) $13,850
11. Daniel K Inouye (D) $13,500
12. Eric Cantor (R) $13,000
13. Patty Murray (D) $12,050
14. Tom Latham (R) $12,000
15. Joseph Crowley (D) $11,000
15. David Vitter (R) $11,000
17. Richard Burr (R) $10,798
18. Tom Davis (R) $10,500
19. Erskine Bowles (D) $10,250
20. Spencer Bachus (R) $10,000
2002 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,873,011
1. Mike Enzi (R) $44,249
2. Vito Fossella (R) $16,500
3. Connie Morella (R) $15,172
4. Mark Kennedy (R) $14,000
5. Eric Cantor (R) $12,999
6. Norm Coleman (R) $12,884
7. Elizabeth Dole (R) $12,750
8. Billy Tauzin (R) $12,000
9. John Thune (R) $11,800
10. Felix Grucci Jr (R) $11,200
11. James Talent (R) $11,000
12. Anne Northup (R) $10,500
13. Max Baucus (D) $10,000
13. Thad Cochran (R) $10,000
13. Susan Collins (R) $10,000
13. J D Hayworth (R) $10,000
13. Tim Hutchinson (R) $10,000
13. Dennis Moore (D) $10,000
13.
Charles “Chip”
Pickering Jr (R) $10,000
20. Sue Kelly (R) $9,999
2000 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,982,826
1. George W Bush (R) $83,850
2. Charles Schumer (D) $48,500
3. Rick A Lazio (R) $48,250
4. Hillary Clinton (D) $40,750
5. Rudy Giuliani (R) $38,700
6. Spencer Abraham (R) $30,000
7. Bill Bradley (D) $25,000
8. John McCain (R) $18,200
9. Charles Rangel (D) $14,750
10. Chris Dodd (D) $14,500
11. Mike DeWine (R) $13,650
12. Vito Fossella (R) $12,750
13. Edolphus Towns (D) $11,000
14. E Clay Shaw, Jr (R) $10,800
15. James E Rogan (R) $10,724
16. Jim Maloney (D) $10,500
16. Brad Sherman (D) $10,500
18. John Ashcroft (R) $10,450
19. James M Jeffords (R) $10,000
19. Steven Kuykendall (R) $10,000
Appendix
206
1998 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,430,614
1. Chris Dodd (D) $66,145
2. Alfonse D'Amato (R) $45,000
3. Charles Schumer (D) $28,450
4. Ron Wyden (D) $22,850
5. Vito Fossella (R) $20,050
6. Matt Fong (R) $13,050
7. Lauch Faircloth (R) $12,875
8.
George Voinovich
(R) $12,000
9. Chuck Grassley (R) $11,500
10. Anna Eshoo (D) $10,000
10. Rick White (R) $10,000
12. Don Nickles (R) $9,500
13.
Christopher S 'Kit'
Bond (R) $9,000
13. Collin C Peterson (D) $9,000
13. Heather Wilson (R) $9,000
16.
Carol Moseley Braun
(D) $8,800
17. Robert F Bennett (R) $8,000
17.
Ben Nighthorse
Campbell (R) $8,000
17. Trent Lott (R) $8,000
20. Paul Coverdell (R) $7,500
Appendix 207
Deloitte Lobbing Expenditures:272
2008
TOTAL: $1,140,000
Deloitte & Touche $650,000
Clark & Assoc $50,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $240,000
Mayer, Brown et al > $10,000*
BGR Holding $120,000
2007
TOTAL: $2,220,000
Deloitte & Touche $440,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Deloitte LLP $1,060,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $240,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
BGR Holding $120,000
Tew Cardenas $200,000
2006
TOTAL: $1,960,000
Deloitte & Touche $360,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Deloitte LLP $840,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $240,000
Mayer, Brown et al $80,000
MWW Group > $10,000*
Barbour, Griffith & Rogers $120,000
272 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Lobbying amounts accessed February 2009.
* Not included in totals
Tew Cardenas LLP $200,000
2005
TOTAL: $1,440,000
Clark & Assoc $20,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Deloitte Tax $860,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $240,000
Barbour, Griffith & Rogers $120,000
Tew Cardenas LLP $120,000
2004
TOTAL: $1,520,000
Deloitte Tax $20,000
Barbour, Griffith & Rogers $120,000
Holland & Knight $100,000
Tew Cardenas LLP $60,000
Clark & Assoc $20,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Deloitte Tax $840,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $240,000
Public Strategies $40,000
2003
TOTAL: $1,125,000
Deloitte Tax $660,000
Holland & Knight $145,000
Clark & Assoc $20,000
Clark & Weinstock $60,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $240,000
Appendix
208
2002
TOTAL: $1,677,455
Deloitte & Touche $1,107,455
Clark & Assoc $60,000
Clark & Weinstock $100,000
Thelen, Reid et al $10,000
Velasquez Group $240,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $160,000
2001
TOTAL: $2,625,000
Deloitte & Touche $300,000
Deloitte & Touche $160,000
Dewey Ballantine LLP $1,600,000
Ickes & Enright Group $25,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $320,000
Velasquez Group $220,000
2000
TOTAL: $4,609,000
Deloitte & Touche $2,524,000
Deloitte & Touche $240,000
Dewey Ballantne LLP $1,180,000
Greenberg Traurig LLP $60,000
Ickes & Enright Group $65,000
Johnson, Madigan et al $280,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Mayer, Brown et al $60,000
Velasquez Group $120,000
1999
TOTAL: $870,000
Deloitte & Touche $440,000
Greenberg Traurig LLP $130,000
Ickes & Enright Group $20,000
Deloitte LLP $240,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
1998
TOTAL: $420,000
Deloitte & Touche $360,000
Deloitte & Touche > $10,000*
Latham & Watkins $20,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
* Not included in totals
Appendix 209
Deloitte Covered Official Lobbyists:273
Firm / Name of Lobbyist Covered Official Position Year(s)
Clark & Assoc.
Sam Geduldig Dir of Coalitions, House Fin. Serv. Comm 2008
Sr. Advisor, Majority Whip Roy Blunt
Clark & Weinstock
Ed Kutler Asst, Office of the Speaker, House of Reps 2006-2008
Asst, House Republic Whip
Vin Weber Member of Congress (MN) 2006-2008
Jon Schwantes Gen. Counsel, Sen. Judiciary Comm. 2007-2008
Margaret McGlinch Chief of Staff, Rep. Tim Walz 2007-2008
Leg. Director, Rep. Richard Neal
Leg. Counsel, Sen. Harry Reid
Leg. Aide, Sen. Daniel Moynihan
Sandra Stuart Asst Sec for Leg Affairs, Dept. of Defense 2006-2008
Chief of Staff, Rep. Vic Fazio
Brian Bieron Policy Director, House Rules Comm. 2002
Kent Bonham Policy Director, Sen. Chuck Hagel 2002
Juleanna Glover Weiss Press Secretary to the Vice President 2003
Timothy Morrison Assoc. Dir, Presidential Personnel 2003
Clark Lytle & Geduldig
Sam Geduldig Dir. Of Coalitions, House Fin. Serv Comm 2007
Sr Advisor, Majority Whip Roy Blunt
Deloitte & Touche LLP
Janet Hale Undersecretary for Mgt, DHS 2007
William Ezzell Partner 2007
Cindy Stevens Director 2007
Charles Heeter Principal 2007
273 Source: Senate Office of Public Records <http://soprweb.senate.gov/>. Accessed January 2009.
Appendix
210
Holland & Knight
Leigh A. Bradley Gen Counsel, Dept of Veterans Affairs 2003
Tillie Fowler Former U.S. Representative 2003
Chris DeLacy Leg. Aide, Sen. John Warner 2003
David Gilliland Chief of Staff, Rep. Tillie Fowelr 2003
Mayer, Brown et al
Jeffrey Lewis Legislative Asst, Sen Breaux 2001-2000
Appendix 211
Accounting Firms: Ernst & Young
Decade-long campaign contribution total (1998-2008): $12,482,407
Decade-long lobbying expenditure total (1998-2008): $25,108,536
Ernst & Young
Campaign Contributions:274
2008 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $2,170,392
1. Rudy Giuliani (R) $292,350
2. Hillary Clinton (D) $165,692
3. Barack Obama (D) $150,207
4. John McCain (R) $105,606
5. Chris Dodd (D) $70,750
6. Mitt Romney (R) $37,800
7. John Cornyn (R) $19,550
8. Max Baucus (D) $18,850
9. John Boehner (R) $13,500
9. Norm Coleman (R) $13,500
11. Susan M Collins (R) $13,300
12. Charles B Rangel (D) $13,287
13. Eric Cantor (R) $12,100
14. Chris Van Hollen (D) $11,000
15. Barney Frank (D) $10,900
16. Spencer Bachus (R) $10,000
16. Elizabeth Dole (R) $10,000
16. Steny H Hoyer (D) $10,000
16. Jay Rockefeller (D) $10,000
274 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Campaign contribution totals accessed February
2009. Individual recipient numbers do
not include the 4th Quarter of 2008.
16. David Scott (D) $10,000
2006 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,592,550
1. Hillary Clinton (D) $81,500
2. Rudy Giuliani (R) $46,200
3. Ben Cardin (D) $23,003
4. Richard Baker (R) $20,250
5. Mike DeWine (R) $20,100
6. John Boehner (R) $19,300
7. Rick Santorum (R) $16,700
8. George Allen (R) $15,650
9. Mark Kennedy (R) $15,250
10. Deborah Pryce (R) $14,650
11. Joe Lieberman (I) $14,200
12. Jon Kyl (R) $13,500
13. Tom DeLay (R) $12,100
14. James M Talent (R) $11,999
15. Barney Frank (D) $11,750
16. Jim McCrery (R) $11,500
17. Eric Cantor (R) $11,200
18. John Campbell (R) $11,000
18. Anne Northrup (R) $11,000
20.
Michael Fitzpatrick
(R) $10,500
Appendix
212
2004 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $2,140,864
1. George W. Bush (R) $305,140
2. John Kerry (D) $101,425
3.
George Voinovich
(R) $43,600
4. Charles Schumer (D) $38,250
5. Richard C Shelby (R) $33,700
6. Richard Burr (R) $24,061
7. Pete Sessions (R) $20,097
8. Michael G. Oxley (R) $19,800
9. Chris John (D) $17,978
10. Hillary Clinton (D) $16,500
11. Mel Martinez (R) $16,261
12. John Thune (R) $15,000
13. Tom Daschle (D) $14,000
14. Arlen Specter (R) $13,750
15.
Christopher S 'Kit'
Bond (R) $13,000
15. Lisa Murkowski (R) $13,000
17. Steny H Hoyer (D) $11,000
18. Evan Bayh (D) $10,500
18. James DeMint (R) $10,500
18. John Tanner (D) $10,500
2002 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $2,012,978
1. Charles Schumer (D) $63,550
2. John Cornyn (R) $16,700
3. Max Baucus (D) $16,261
4. Jay Rockefeller (D) $12,550
5. Saxby Chambliss (R) $12,500
5. Norm Coleman (R) $12,500
7. Mary L Landrieu (D) $12,250
8. James M Talent (R) $12,000
9. John Thune (R) $11,300
10. Connie Morella (R) $10,999
11. Anna Eshoo (D) $10,500
11. Rob Portman (R) $10,500
13. Dennis Moore (D) $10,200
14. Susan M Collins (R) $10,169
15. Roy Blunt (R) $10,000
15. Mark Kennedy (R) $10,000
15. Michael G Oxley (R) $10,000
18. Jennifer Dunn (R) $9,916
19. E Clay Shaw, Jr (R) $9,750
20. Robert Torricelli (D) $9,250
2000 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $2,845,336
1. George W. Bush (R) $181,949
2. Al Gore (D) $136,675
3. Bill Bradley (D) $67,750
4. Rick A Lazio (R) $30,850
5. Hillary Clinton (D) $30,450
6. Dianne Feinstein (D) $17,150
7. Mike DeWine (R) $15,750
8. John McCain (R) $14,525
9. George Allen (R) $14,450
10. Sherrod Brown (D) $14,000
10. Robert Torricelli (D) $14,000
12. John Ashcroft (R) $13,999
13. Spencer Abraham (R) $13,000
14. Bill Frist (R) $12,500
15. Charles S. Robb (D) $12,450
16. Chris Dodd (D) $12,250
17. Richard Gephardt (D) $12,000
17. Orrin G Hatch (R) $12,000
19. John R Kasich (R) $11,500
Appendix 213
20. E Clay Shaw, Jr. (R) $11,250
1998 Top Recipients
TOTAL: $1,720,281
1. Charles Schumer (D) $26,700
2. Alfonse D'Amato (R) $13,750
3. Newt Gingrich (R) $12,000
4.
Christopher S 'Kit'
Bond (R) $11,750
4. John Linder (R) $11,750
6.
George Voinovich
(R) $11,450
6. Rick White (R) $11,450
8. Barbara Boxer (D) $11,000
9. Peter Fitzgerald (R) $10,500
10. John Breaux (D) $10,249
11. Evan Bayh (D) $10,000
11. Thomas Bliley Jr (R) $10,000
11. Paul Coverdell (R) $10,000
11. Tom DeLay (R) $10,000
11. Jennifer Dunn (R) $10,000
11. John Ensign (R) $10,000
11. Martin Frost (D) $10,000
11. Chuck Grassley (R) $10,000
11. Fritz Hollings (D) $10,000
20. Anna Eshoo (D) $9,999
Appendix
214
Ernst & Young
Lobbying Expenditures:275
2008
TOTAL: $3,173,056
Ernst & Young $2,103,056
RR&G $240,000
Elmendrof Strategies $200,000
Glover Park Group $160,000
American Continental
Group $120,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Clark & Assoc $60,000
Mayer, Brown et al >$10,000*
Jolly/Rissler $210,000
2007
TOTAL: $3,560,480
Ernst & Young $2,440,480
RR&G $240,000
Glover Park Group $200,000
Elmendorf Strategies $200,000
American Continental
Group $120,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
Jolly/Rissler Inc $200,000
2006
TOTAL: $1,741,500
Ernst & Young $861,500
RR&G $160,000
275 Source: Center for Responsive Politics.
Lobbying amounts accessed February 2009.
* Not included in totals
Glover Park Group $140,000
Alpine Group $140,000
American Continental
Group $120,000
Mayer, Brown et al $80,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Jolly/Rissler Inc $120,000
2005
TOTAL: $2,549,640
Ernst & Young $1,749,640
Alpine Group $200,000
Glover Park Group $160,000
American Continental
Group $120,000
Clark & Weinstock $80,000
Bryan Cave Strategies $40,000
Clark & Assoc $40,000
Thelen, Reid & Priest $20,000
Jolly/Rissler Inc $140,000
2004
TOTAL: $2,650,000
Ernst & Young $1,790,000
Alpine Group $220,000
Harbour Group $140,000
Clark & Weinstock $140,000
American Continental
Group $120,000
Clark & Assoc $60,000
Public Strategies $40,000
Jolly/Rissler Inc $140,000
Appendix 215
2003
TOTAL: $2,880,000
Ernst & Young $1,980,000
Public Strategies $180,000
Clark & Weinstock $180,000
Alpine Group $160,000
American Continental
Group $120,000
Clark & Assoc $80,000
Jolly/Rissler Inc $80,000
Harbour Group $60,000
Barrett, Michael F. Jr $40,000
2002
TOTAL: $2,573,860
Ernst & Young $2,343,860
American Continental
Group $120,000
Clark & Weinstock $100,000
Thelen, Reid et al $10,000
Clark & Assoc > $10,000*
2001
TOTAL: $1,600,000
Ernst & Young $1,320,000
American Continental
Group $80,000
Mayer, Brown et al $60,000
2000
TOTAL: $1,340,000
Ernst & Young $1,200,000
American Continental
Group $80,000
Mayer, Brown et al $60,000
* Not included in totals
1999
TOTAL: $1,400,000
Ernst & Young $1,200,000
Fleishman-Hillard $100,000
Mayer, Brown et al $100,000
1998
TOTAL: $1,640,000
Ernst & Young $1,420,000
Fleishman-Hillard $180,000
Mayer, Brown et al $40,000
Appendix
216
Ernst & Young Covered Official Lobbyists:276
Firm / Name of Lobbyist Covered Official Position Year(s)
Mayer, Brown, & Platt
Jeffery Lewis Legislative Assitant to Senator Breaux 1999-2001
Clark and Weinstock
Brian Bieron Policy Director, House Rules Committee 2002
Kent Bonham Policy Director for Sen. Chuck Hagel 2002-2003
Juleanna Glover Weiss Press Secretary to the Vice President 2002-2003
Jonathan Schwantes
General Counsel, Senate Judiciary Committee
2007
Ed Kutler
Assistant Office of the Speaker House of
Reps 2008
Assistant, House Republic Whip
Sandra Stuart Asst. Sec. for Leg Affairs, DoD 2008
Chief of Staff, Rep. Vic Fazio
Vin Weber Member of Congress (MN) 2008
Margaret McGlinch Chief of Staff, Rep. Tim Walz, 2008
Leg. Director, Rep. Richard Neal
Legislative Aide, Sen Daniel Moynihan
Leg. Counsel, Sen Harry Reid
Jolly/Rissler Inc.
Thomas R. Jolly Chairman 2003-2004
Glover Park Group
Joyce Brayboy Chief of Staff, Rep. Mel Watt 2007
Joel Johnson Chief of Staff, Sen. Howard Metzenbaum, 2008
Exec. Director, House Democratic Study
Group
Assistant Secretary of the Minority US
Senate
Staff Director, Democratic Leadership
Committee, Special Assistant to the Presi-
276 Source: Senate Office of Public Records <http://soprweb.senate.gov/>. Accessed January 2009.
Appendix 217
dent for Policy, Communications
Susan Brophy Chief of Staff, Rep. Byron Dorgan 2008
Chief of Staff Senator Tim Wirth
Deputy Assistant to the President for Legislative
Affairs
Clark, Lytle, & Geduldig
Sam Geduldig
Dir of Coalitions, House Fin Serv Com, Sr
Advisor, Majority Whip Roy Blunt
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