A group of extremist Israeli settlers defaced, on Tuesday at dawn, a mosque in Emresh village, south of Doura town, near the southern West Bank city of Hebron.
The settlers came from Etnael illegal settlement, built on privately-owned lands that belong to the residents in the area.
The settlers wrote racist graffiti that read “Death to Arabs”, “Price Tag”, and several other racist graffiti.
Extremist settlers are behind hundreds of attacks that not only target the residents and their lands, but also have targeted graveyards, mosques and churches in different parts of Palestine.
Last week, a group of extremist Israeli settlers attacked the Latrun Christian Monastery in occupied Jerusalem, and wrote racist graffiti describing Jesus as a “Monkey”, and other graffiti against the Christian religion in general.
Last month, several extremist Israeli settlers invaded the Awarta village, east of the northern West Bank city of Nablus, and wrote racist graffiti on the walls of several homes, and the deface the local mosque.
Earlier in February this year, extremist Israelis wrote “Death to Christians” on the walls of a Jerusalem church, and slashed the tires of vehicles parked in the area.
The attacks fall under the “Price Tag” attacks carried out by extremist Israeli settlers against the Palestinian people, their lands and property, such attacks have been carried out against several mosques, including some that were completely burnt, and several churches.
- Soldiers Physically Attack Palestinian Youth In Hebron (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Hebron man walks down street for first time in years (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Jewish Settlers Empty Palestinian Well, Flood Farmlands (alethonews.wordpress.com)
The House of Representatives voted Wednesday to extend the government’s power to warrantlessly wiretap Americans for another five years by reauthorizing the 2008 amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.
Lawmakers in the House agreed from Washington, DC on Wednesday afternoon to reauthorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act’s Amendments Act of 2008 (FAA), a polarizing legislation that has been challenged by privacy advocates and civil liberties organizations alike around the country. The extension was approved by a vote of 301 to 118.
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was first signed into law in 1978 by President Jimmy Carter, but amendments added two decades later under the George W Bush administration provide for the government to conduct widespread and blanketing snooping of emails and phone calls of Americans. The FISA Amendments added in 2008, specifically section 702, specify that the government can eavesdrop on emails and phone calls sent from US citizens to persons reasonably suspected to be located abroad without ever requiring intelligence officials to receive a court order.
If the US Senate echoes the House’s extension of the act, the FAA will carry through for another five years until 2017, ensuring the federal intelligence community that they will be able to conduct surveillance on the correspondence of the country’s own citizens well into the future. If no action is taken, the FAA is slated to expire at the end of 2012.
Earlier this year, a plea from two US senators to see how many times the FAA has been used was refused by the National Security Administration. Last month, San Francisco’s Electronic Frontier Foundation filed a lawsuit against the US Justice Department for failing to adhere to Freedom of Information Act requests for documents pertaining to the program.
“The FISA Amendments Act (FAA) of 2008 gave the NSA expansive power to spy on Americans’ international email and telephone calls,” the EFF explained in an official statement made after the suit was filed. “However, last month, in a letter to Senator Ron Wyden, a government official publicly disclosed that the NSA’s surveillance had gone even further than what the law permits, with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) issuing at least one ruling calling the NSA’s actions unconstitutional.”
Sen. Wyden, a Democratic lawmaker from Oregon who has also sit on the Senate intelligence committee for several years, originally asked for Senate to place a hold on the vote this past June. This week, Sen. Wyden tells Reuters, “My hold is on and it will stay on,” although that plea does not apply to the House, however, where lawmakers appeared eager on Wednesday to power through the vote.
So determined were some lawmakers to proceed, in fact, that the rules of the debates preceding Wednesday’s vote called for no more than one hour of discussion before ballots were cast. Several congressmen, including lawmakers that planned to vote yes on the FAA extension regardless, proposed a two year extension as a compromise, but no new amendments were allowed to be tacked on before Wednesday’s vote.
Despite opposition on and off the Hill, the FAA has received praise from some of Washington’s most elite members of the government, including Attorney General Eric Holder and long-standing lawmaker Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), the sponsor of the FAA renewal who also infamously urged Congress to approve the since-defeated Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, a broad and dangerous Internet legislation that threatened to reshape the Web as we know it.
In his address at Northwestern University School of Law this past March, Mr. Holder said section 702 of the FAA “ensures that the government has the flexibility and agility it needs to identify and to respond to terrorist and other foreign threats to our security,” but emphasized the fact that only persons thought to be outside the US — not Americans — can be targeted. When Sens. Wyden and Udall asked to know how often that snooping involved Americans at all, however, they were told by the NSA’s Inspector General that a “review of the sort suggested would itself violate the privacy of US persons.”
On his part, Sen. Wyden has written, “that if no one has even estimated how many Americans have had their communications collected under the FISA Amendments Act . . . Then it is possible that this number could be quite large.”
“Since all of the communications collected by the government under section 702 are collected without individual warrants, I believe that there should be clear rules prohibiting the government from searching through these communications in an effort to find the phone calls or emails of a particular American, unless the government has obtained a warrant or emergency authorization permitting surveillance of that American,” the lawmaker wrote in an official press release earlier this year.
Rep. Smith, the sponsor of both this bill and SOPA, has said, “We have a duty to ensure the intelligence community can gather the intelligence they need to protect our country.”
On Thursday, Rep. Smith claimed, “Foreign nations continue to spy on America to plot cyber-attacks and attempt to steal sensitive information from our military and private sector industries,” and that Congress has “a solemn responsibility to ensure that the intelligence community can gather the information” necessary to hinder these attempts.
Rep. Dan Lungren (R-California) added on Wednesday from the Hill that reauthorizing the FAA is “critical to the protection of the American people,” claiming that the United States, “as a nation had not done enough to connect the dots to warn us sufficiently to protect” against another terrorist attack on par with the ones that devastated America on September 11, 2001.
Rep. Trey Gowdy, a Republican congressman from South Carolina, also used the attack on the Twin Towers to justify the necessity of extending the FAA.
“If we could come together to remember 9/11, surely we can come together to prevent another one,” said Rep. Gowdy.
Opponents of the act, however, say that the attempts to do as such come at a cost too great for civil liberties.
“We’ve been told that we can’t even tell how many people are being subjected to this process located in the United States, and that we don’t know and they can’t tell us,” Rep. John Conyers (D-Michigan ) pleaded earlier this year in opposition to the act. “I think we can get a little bit closer. There can be some reasonableness. It’s this kind of vagueness that creates in those of us in the Congress, suspicions that are negative rather than suspicions that are positive.”
“Why can’t we know how many people are affected by FISA amendment act in the US?” Rep Conyers asked. “This kind of vagueness creates suspicions.”
Former Democratic presidential hopeful Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) said on his own part that those suspicions are even more validated since the Justice Department has declined to adhere to a Freedom of Information Act request for information on the FAA, explaining on Wednesday, “Everyone becomes suspect when big brother is listening.”
Rep Hank Johnson (D-GA) also threw his weight behind efforts to reject the act on Wednesday, saying it the FISA amendments allow for “illegal surveillance of an untold number of American citizens” with absolutely no oversight.
“Not even the NSA knows the extent to which FISA amendment acts have potentially been approved,” Rep Earl Blumenhauser (D-Oregon) added from the House floor before the vote.
The American Civil Liberties Union reports that, every day, the NSA intercepts and stores around 1.7 billion emails, phone calls, text and other electronic communications thanks to laws like FISA. To put it into perspective, they add, “that’s equivalent to 138 million books, every 24 hours.”
“After four years, you’d hope that some basic information or parameters of such a massive spying program would be divulged to the public, or at least your rank-and-file member of Congress, but they haven’t,” says Michelle Richardson, a counsel at the ACLU’s Washington Legislative Office. “Only a small handful of members have either personally attended classified briefings or have staff with high enough clearances to attend for them.Sen. Ron Wyden — who has been on the Senate Intelligence Committee for years—has even been stonewalled by the Obama administration for a year and a half in his attempts to learn basic information about the program, such as the number of Americans who have had their communications intercepted under the FAA.”
“Can you believe that 435 members of Congress who have sworn to uphold the Constitution are about to vote on a sweeping intelligence gathering law without this basic information?” she asks.
- US: House to Vote on FISA Amendments Act Wednesday (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- NSA Surveillance Violated Constitution, Secret FISA Court Found (cato-at-liberty.org)
With U.S. foreign missions besieged on September 11 by Muslims outraged by an anti-Islam film, it’s useful to recall Jeff Gates’ analysis of strikingly similar earlier America-discrediting provocations. Writing in the wake of the “International Burn A Koran Day” promoted by Christian Zionist Pastor Terry Jones — who is currently promoting the “Innocence of Muslims” — for the ninth anniversary of 9/11, Gates observed:
As any game theorist could predict, even the possibility of such a psy-ops (a Koran book burning) was guaranteed to galvanize anti-American sentiments and catalyze anti-American demonstrations. As the book burning gained steadily more profile, this provocation increased the probability of catalyzing long-lasting anti-American sentiments.
As Gates pointed out in part three of his must-read (and must-watch) four-part series, “The Hate Mongers Among Us,” Pastor Jones’ Koran-burning stunt bore a “remarkable resemblance” to the Newsweek “report” alleging that a U.S. soldier flushed a Koran down the toilet. “Though that May 2005 account by Michael Isikoff was later withdrawn in substantial part,” noted Gates, “its publication provoked an earlier well-timed response by setting off anti-American demonstrations in Muslim countries worldwide.”
Newsweek, Gates observed, had recently been acquired by Sidney Harman, the now-deceased husband of former Congresswoman Jane Harman, the then pro-Israel chair of the Intelligence Subcommittee of the House Committee on Homeland Security.
The 2006 “cartoon riots” also featured a non-transparent Israeli media connection. As Gates explained:
If this sounds familiar, it should. You may recall when the wartime role played by global media became apparent in the Clash-catalyzing “cartoon riots” that swept the world in February 2006. That reaction followed the publication in France, Germany, Italy and Spain of graphic images of the prophet Muhammad that first appeared in a Danish newspaper in September 2005.
Citing free speech as the rationale, cultural editor Flemming Rose published a compilation of cartoons certain to be seen by Muslims as blasphemous, including one featuring Muhammad with a bomb in place of a turban.
An Ashkenazi native of Ukraine, Rose worked as a reporter for five years in Moscow during the oligarchi-zation of Russia. As his contribution to that nationwide fraud, he translated into Danish a fawning 1990 autobiography (Against the Stream) of presidential candidate Boris Yeltsin whose administration enabled the wildly successful financial pillaging of Russia.
Six of the top seven Russian oligarchs were Ashkenazim who qualified for Israeli citizenship.
While the media will most likely focus global attention on “Christian” Pastor Jones’ association with the latest anti-Islam provocation, it will come as no surprise to those familiar with Israeli psyops to read in the Wall Street Journal that the “Innocence of Muslims” was “directed and produced by an Israeli-American real-estate developer” or in Ynetnews that he “identifies himself as an Israeli Jew.” With the U.S. once again bearing the brunt of Muslim anger, it’s also not surprising that the Israeli filmmaker declined to identify the “about 100 Jewish donors” who funded this predictably provocative “American” production.
In the September 17 issue of The New Yorker, David Makovsky has a piece entitled The Silent Strike: How Israel bombed a Syrian nuclear installation and kept it secret Makovsky tells a tale about how Israel took out a Syrian nuclear threat. There is one slight problem: Makovsky’s tale should have been published as “fiction”. How do I know? I’ve heard this story before.
It is an unquestioned fact that Israel bombed something in Syria back in September 2007. But what was that something? The Israelis claimed that they bombed a Syrian nuclear reactor, but journalist Laura Rozen shot that story down very convincingly. She interviewed Joseph Cirincione, then director of nuclear policy with the Center for American Progress, who identified the bombed site as a non-nuclear Syrian military base. It’s where Syria stores their missiles, which they buy from Iran and North Korea. It’s not a nuclear reactor or any kind of nuclear installation at all. Back in 2008, the mainstream media (AP, Tom Jelton of NPR, ABC News) referred to the “Syrian nuclear reactor” as if it were an established fact, when it was actually malarkey.
Back in 2008, I relied on Laura Rozen’s investigative reporting and the detective work of antiwar Libertarian blogger Justin Raimondo to produce a piece, Syrian Nukes: the Phantom Menace, published on CounterPunch. It’s valuable background reading and a refutation of the Makovsky piece.
What Cirincione told the BBC back in 2007 applies today as well: “This appears to be the work of a small group of officials leaking cherry-picked, unvetted ‘intelligence’ to key reporters in order to promote a preexisting political agenda.” Cirincione added “If this sounds like the run-up to the war with Iraq, then it should.”
It often pays to ask who the “expert” is and where he is coming from. So who is David Makovsky? He is a Senior Fellow of Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP), which is an offshoot of AIPAC. WINEP is part of the Israel Lobby, but has the public appearance of impartial expertise, compared with the brazen bias of AIPAC. Makovsky was the executive editor of the very hawkish Jerusalem Post for over a decade. Makovsky has co-authored a book on Middle East politics and policy with Dennis Ross, the well-known US diplomat and Israeli shill. Makovsky is very well connected to the Israel Lobby.
With his New Yorker article, Makovsky is building the case for an attack on Iran’s uranium enrichment facilities by Israel and/or the US, by comparing it to a highly fictional account of Israel’s 2007 attack on a (non-nuclear) military base, which Makovsky falsely claims was a Syrian nuclear reactor. Much of the Israeli ruling class (ex-Mossad directors, generals, politicians) is opposed to attacking Iran, as are Israeli Jews as a whole. The opposition is on pragmatic grounds: well-grounded worry about the consequences of (another) open-ended war. To allay these fears (mainly among Americans, more than Israelis), Makovsky serves up a soothing fairy tale: Israel bombed a Syrian nuke in 2007 and everything turned out OK, so if Israel bombs Iran it will also turn out OK.
Last week, an interesting article by Daniel Gordis appeared on Tablemag.com. Gordis, a committed Zionist intellectual, is concerned about the inevitable collapse of the Jewish state and its impact on world Jewry in general and American Jews in particular.
Although it’s reassuring that Zionist scholars are now realising that that the Jewish State is on its way out, even more importantly, Gordis’ article gives us a glimpse into contemporary Jewish identity politics, Jewish culture and Zionist collective psychosis. And interestingly, Gordis reaffirms each and every critical argument I myself raise in my latest book The Wandering Who.
Gordis is tormented by polls that suggest that the centrality of Israel within Jewish American life is declining. Apparently, a recent survey suggests that 50 percent of young Jewish Americans (35 years old and younger) would not see the destruction of Israel as a ‘personal tragedy’.
In his attempt to explain such a dramatic change in Jewish Diaspora Jewish attitude, Gordis refers to Peter Beinart’s take on the subject: that young American Jews feel safe, and unlike their parents, do not fear anti-Semitism. Beinart is correct. Western Jews are no longer anxious. On the contrary, contemporary Jewish political arrogance knows no limits. AIPAC and similar Western Jewish lobbies have been openly pushing for interventionist wars for more than a decade and some influential Jews have been open in exploring different forms and aspects of Judeocentric domination of the media, banking, culture and politics. In fact it seems that many Jews are not troubled at all by a possible rise of anti Semitism and are unconcerned with any possible consequences of their own actions.
To a certain extent this sense of Jewish omnipotence may be seen as a direct continuum of Israeli strength; when young American Jews witness their American elected politicians dancing shamelessly to AIPAC’s Klezmatic noise, naturally they are filled with a sense of invincible might and it is this that is the essence of contemporary Jewish collective power – a power that can only be realised in connection with Israeli strength.
Pre Traumatic Stress Again
Gordis is there to shake Jewish Diaspora confidence by reintroducing the old tribal collective fear. He writes: “Theodor Herzl did what he did and wrote what he wrote because Jewish life in the Diaspora had become, to use Hobbes’ phrase, ‘poor, nasty, brutish, and short.’” According to Gordis, contemporary Jews are too self-possessed and feel far too safe. “What happened back then, they assert, could not happen today.” But Gordis believes they are deluded. “American Jews’ confidence resembles that of the Jews of Cordoba—who were forcibly converted, burned alive at the stake, and summarily expelled in the Spanish Inquisition.” Similarly, he asserts that, “the Jews of Berlin in 1930 also believed they had found the ultimate enlightened home, that the dark days of Europe would never return. And in the space of but a few years, German Jewry was erased.” Here, Gordis conveys a clear message – in the light of a new potential Shoa “American Jewish life as it now exists would not survive the loss of Israel.”
In The Wandering Who I explore the impact of Pre-Traumatic Stress Disorder (Pre-TSD) and I refer in particular to that uniquely Jewish collective tendency to be culturally, spiritually and politically shaped by some phantasmic, imaginary, future, disastrous event. Jewish politics is always formed by future trauma. Accordingly, Gordis message to his fellow Jews is clear. It isn’t the Shoa of the past that should unite us, it is actually, the Shoa ahead that should reawaken our Zionist bond.
Gordis message to American Jews is clear. A strong Israel together with AIPAC’s control of American foreign policy is good for the Jews and any alternative is a recipe for disaster. “When some 400 mostly Orthodox rabbis marched on Washington in the October 1943, President Roosevelt simply refused to meet them and departed the White House via a rear door. There were no mass protests, no caravans of buses to Washington to demand help for their European kin.” Nowadays, the situation has changed dramatically. The presidency of the USA is a democratically elected position reserved for that candidate who has bought the trust of the Jewish Lobby.
“Jews today no longer think of themselves as a tiptoeing people,” says Gordis. And why should they? Thanks to Israel and its powerful lobby, they regard themselves as the most influential and powerful ethnic group on the planet. In America, AIPAC dominates foreign policy, in Britain 80% of leading party MPs are members of the powerful CFI (Conservative Friends of Israel) and in France CRIF runs the show. Take it from Gordis a Zionist official mouthpiece; “Israel has changed the existential condition of Jews everywhere, even in America. Without the State of Israel, the self-confidence and sense of belonging that American Jews now take for granted would quickly disappear.” In short, Jews can run the show – but only as long as Israel is unbeatable.
And he’s not wrong. Like so many Zionists, Gordis is both honest and consistent – a quality I rarely find within the Jewish anti-Zionist discourse. Gordis openly admits that we are dealing here with a clear paradox. The sense of belonging and security that leads many American Jews to believe that they do not need the state of Israel is itself a product of that very same state of Israel. That lethal arrogance that led Zionists such as Bernard Henri Levi, or Jewish Chronicle writer David Aaronovitch to advocate interventionist global wars should be seen as the outcome of a strong Jewish State – a state that quite literally gets away with murder.
In The Wandering Who I suggest that Israel operates as a key Jewish symbolic identifier so that Jews construct their identity in reference to their Jewish state. This is not only true for Zionist Jews but is also the case for those so-called ‘anti Zionist Jews’ whose identity is inherently tied to their opposition to Zionism and Israel. The disappearance of Israel would leave their political identity stark naked.
Gordis detects a similar pattern amongst American liberal Jews. “Though many American Jews, especially the younger among them, now believe the loss of Israel would not be tragic, Israel continues to energize them in ways that no other issue does.” Gordis continues “Israel is not just a homeland to Israelis. It is also a ‘state unto the Diaspora’; the state that, even from afar, secures the life and instils the passions of Jews all over the world.” This is true not only for Zionists, but also to those very few Jewish anti-Zionists who, by means of negation, ‘passionately’ cling to Israel.
Gordis seems to realise that, for Israel, the game is over, but he realises that this may also entail a collapse of Jewish power. “The loss of Israel would fundamentally alter American Jewry. It would arrest the revival of Jewish life now unfolding in parts of Europe. And Israeli Jewry would be no more. The end of Israel would, in short, end the Jewish people as we know it.”
The current ‘Jewish golden epoch’ is coming to its inevitable end. Yet, the question that remains is whether our Zionist and Israeli leaders would let our planet survive the collapse of their latest Jewish empire? Following Netanyahu, Barak and AIPAC’s relentless push for Armageddon, and bearing in mind that collective suicidal narratives such as Samson and Masada are so precious within the Zionist and Israeli discourses, we should stay on high alert. Sadly, turning our planet into dust is fully consistent with the Israeli and Zionist mission.
It is down to world leaders to dismantle Israel and its powerful Jewish lobbies wisely and carefully, accepting all the time that we are dealing with a very lethal entity. But it’s also down to each one of us to be fully attentive to Gordis’s exchange with his fellow Diaspora Jews. It’s down to us to oppose any form or symptom of Jewish power: Zionist, ‘anti’ Zionist and Sabbath Goyim alike. It is down to us to save ourselves and our universe, but also to save the Jews who are, unfortunately, once again, about to bring yet another disaster on themselves and on us all.
- Chomsky: ‘I support Israel, but…’ (alethonews.wordpress.com)
Recently renewed Israeli efforts to ensure that Hezbollah is on the European Union (EU)’s list of designated terrorist organizations have not achieved the desired result. They have, however, succeeded in reopening the question, making it a topic of debate and controversy in Europe, and getting some countries, notably the Netherlands and Britain, to take strongly anti-Hezbollah stands. Yet these have not been translated into action.
At a meeting with Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi last week, Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu demanded the EU take action and adopt a clear stand against Hezbollah, which he described as “the world’s leading terrorist organization.” His guest sufficed with expressing an “understanding” of the Israeli demand and made no promises.
This was preceded by a campaign by the Israeli foreign ministry aimed at persuading EU states to designate Hezbollah as a terrorist organization on the strength of Israel’s accusation that it was involved in the bombing in the Bulgarian town of Burgas in July in which five Israelis and a Bulgarian were killed. Israel’s lobbies and supporters in various European countries continue to be highly active in this regard, with some success. Most notably, the parliamentary foreign policy spokesman of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU party, Philipp Missfelder, publicly endorsed its demands. He said Hezbollah “threatens the security of our alliance partner Israel and is involved in countless terror activities,” and that “it is long overdue that Hezbollah be placed on the EU’s list of terror organizations” and “the EU should not allow any more time to elapse” before doing so.
Bulgaria continues to be put under particularly heavy Israeli pressure to accuse Hezbollah of the Burgas bombing. The ultimate aim of this is to get the Lebanese party indicted in a European court in order to facilitate its designation by the EU as a terrorist group. An indictment, and the possibility of a conviction, would embarrass the influential member-states – including France, Italy, Spain, Germany and others – who have been holding out against such a move out because of their interests in Lebanon and the region.
The Bulgarian authorities also appear to be holding out. They have steered clear of implicating Hezbollah in the bombing, and stressed they do not have enough evidence to accuse anyone of it, thus denying Israel the legal precedent it seeks. The Israeli pressure is unlikely to desist, and its effect will only become apparent once the investigations are complete, which Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladinov has indicated should be within the next two months.
In the meantime, the EU position remains unchanged, and falls short of meeting Israel’s demand, at least for now and the foreseeable future. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius’ statement declaring that his country is not prepared to take such a step reflects a longstanding French policy of avoiding provoking Hezbollah. British Foreign Secretary William Hague has adopted the Dutch extreme anti-Hezbollah position in theory, but in practice this seems to have enabled Britain to appear to strike an aggressive posture against the party without actually changing policy. Britain continues to draw a distinction between Hezbollah’s military and political wings. This was conceived of as a way of pre-empting the US and Israel and preventing them from foisting decisions on the Europeans that would damage their interests in the region. There has thus been no change in Britain’s policy, despite the hawkish turn it has appeared to take against Hezbollah recently.
Israel’s failed efforts have shown that it is not enough for it to demand Hezbollah’s inclusion on the EU terrorism list for the member-states to comply. For the major European capitals, there are interests and facts on the ground to consider before making any move against Hezbollah, including the likely impact on European interests in light of the party’s standing and influence in Lebanon and the region.
If the EU does end up submitting to Israeli pressure, it would signal something else. It could mean that the confrontation has begun. Yet the signs continue to indicate that no such decision has been taken, at least not at this stage.
Yahya Dbouk is Israeli Affairs Columnist at Al-Akhbar
- EU turns down Israel call to put Hezbollah on terror list (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- UK Calls to Add Hezbollah’s Resistance to EU’s Terror Watch List (alethonews.wordpress.com)
US Special Operations forces rescue captured Private Jessica Lynch from Saddam Hussein Hospital hospital near Nasiriyah (see March 23, 2003). According to the Pentagon, the rescue is a classic Special Forces raid, with US commandos in Black Hawk helicopters blasting their way through Iraqi resistance in and out of the medical compound. [Baltimore Sun, 11/11/2003] The Associated Press’s initial report is quite guarded, saying only that Lynch had been rescued. An Army spokesman “did not know whether Lynch had been wounded or when she might return to the United States.” [Project for Excellence in Journalism, 6/23/2003]
‘Shooting Going In … Shooting Going Out’ – Subsequent accounts are far more detailed (see April 3, 2003). Military officials say that the rescue was mounted after securing intelligence from CIA operatives. A Special Forces unit of Navy SEALs, Army Rangers, and Air Force combat controllers “touched down in blacked-out conditions,” according to the Washington Post. Cover is provided by an AC-130 gunship circling overhead; a reconnaissance aircraft films the events of the rescue. One military official briefed on the operation says: “There was shooting going in, there was some shooting going out. It was not intensive. There was no shooting in the building, but it was hairy, because no one knew what to expect. When they got inside, I don’t think there was any resistance. It was fairly abandoned.” [Washington Post, 4/3/2003] CENTCOM spokesman General Vincent Brooks says he is not yet sure who Lynch’s captors were, but notes: “Clearly the regime had done this. It was regime forces that had been in there. Indications are they were paramilitaries, but we don’t know exactly who. They’d apparently moved most of them out before we arrived to get in, although, as I mentioned, there were buildings outside of the Saddam Hospital, where we received fire—or the assault force received fire—during the night.” [New York Times, 4/2/2003]
‘Prototype Torture Chamber’ – According to a military official, the Special Forces soldiers find what he calls a “prototype” Iraqi torture chamber in the hospital’s basement, equipped with batteries and metal prods. US Marines are patrolling Nasiriyah to engage whatever Iraqi forces may still be in the area. [Washington Post, 4/3/2003]
- Pat Tillman & Jessica Lynch: The cover-up | Capitol Hill Blue (lissakr11humanelife.wordpress.com)
- Washington Post memory holes Jessica Lynch (matteorossinifano.wordpress.com)
- Jessica Lynch, check out how The Washington Post misled you (frankwarner.typepad.com)
- PsyWar – The Real Battlefield is the Mind – Jessica Lynch Rescue and Saddam Statue Toppling Staged by US Psyops? (undergrounddocumentaries.com)
- How the corporate media lies to you (fromthetrenchesworldreport.com)