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2010 April 18 | Activist News

The Road to World War 3

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Edward Snowden

Open Letter To Obama

July 26, 2013 President Barack Obama The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20500 Re: Civil Disobedience, Edward J. Snowden, and the Constitution Dear Mr. President: You are acutely aware More »


U.S. Companies Pay Just One-Third Of The Legal Tax Rate: GAO Study

Huffington Post July 1, 2013 By Mark Gongloff Big, profitable U.S. companies paid an average federal tax rate of less than 13 percent in 2010, according to a new study — or More »

jeff olsen

Man Tried for Chalk Drawings Found Not Guilty

NBC San Diego July 1, 2013 By Christina London The man accused of vandalism for drawing with chalk outside banks has been found not guilty on all charges. A jury returned its More »


The Bigger Story Behind the AP Spying Scandal

Washington’s Blog/Global Research May 20, 2012 By George Washington Attack on the Press You know that the Department of Justice tapped scores of phone lines at the Associated Press. You might have More »

Daily Archives: April 18, 2010

Peru town copes with being devoured by mine

SUNDAY Apr 18, 2010
By ANDREW WHALEN, Associated Press

CERRO DE PASCO, Peru (AP) — The mile-wide gash grows almost daily with each dynamite blast, slowly devouring this bleak provincial capital high in the Andes.
The half-century-old, open-pit zinc and lead mine belches streamers of dust that coat homes. The soil is so contaminated, indigenous Quechua communities on the city’s outskirts have quit growing potatoes and lettuce.

link – http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100418/ap_on_re_la_am_ca/lt_peru_toxic_town

Ecuadorean threat to oil giants

April 17, 2010

The Ecuadorian government has threatened to take over foreign oil concessions if the companies resist growing state control of the industry.

President Rafael Correa said every day millions of dollars were going to oil companies that should go to the state.
The government has been pressing the companies to give up concessions that give them a share of oil field profits and accept service contracts instead.

link – http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8627799.stm

GE: 7,000 tax returns, $0 U.S. tax bill

By Annalyn Censky

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — General Electric filed more than 7,000 income tax returns in hundreds of global jurisdictions last year, but when push came to shove, the company owed the U.S. government a whopping bill of $0.
How’d it pull off that trick? By losing lots of money.

GE had plenty of earnings last year — just not in the United States. For tax purposes, the company’s U.S. operations lost $408 million, while its international businesses netted a $10.8 billion profit.

link – http://money.cnn.com/2010/04/16/news/companies/ge_7000_tax_returns/index.htm

Zubaydah’s Torture, Detention Subject of Senate Intelligence Inquiry

Saturday 17 April 2010

by: Jason Leopold, t r u t h o u t | Report

(Illustration: Jared Rodriguez / t r u t h o u t)

The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence has launched an investigation into the brutal torture of Abu Zubaydah, the “high-value” detainee captured in March 2002 that the Bush administration wrongly claimed was one of the planners of 9/11 and a top al-Qaeda operative, according to several Capitol Hill sources.

The investigation of Zubaydah, who was tortured at a secret black site prison in Thailand, will be conducted alongside the committee’s ongoing probe of the Bush administration’s interrogation and detention policies.

The panel will scrutinize thousands of pages of highly classified documents related to Zubaydah’s detention and torture to determine, among other things, whether the techniques he was subjected to was accurately reflected in CIA cable traffic sent back to Langley, whether he ever provided actionable intelligence to his torturers, and how the CIA and other government agencies came to rely on flawed intelligence that led the Bush administration to classify him as the No. 3 person in al-Qaeda and its first high-value detainee, Hill sources said.

As previously reported by Truthout, in his habeas corpus case, the Justice Department does not rely upon any statements Zubaydah made to his torturers after he was captured in Pakistan in March 2002 nor does the agency cite Bush-era claims about Zubaydah to justify why he should continue to be detained.

Zubaydah’s attorney, Brent Mickum, said in an interview that he briefed the Intelligence Committee last year about his client.

“It was a very partisan group,” Mickum said about the briefing. “Republicans had their agenda and they were not very interested in hearing the facts of the case. I told them what my views were on the case. I’m delighted [the committee] has decided to take a hard look at the case now.”

The committee also intends to probe the torture and detention policies of other high-value detainees. The Hill sources said they did not know the identity of those detainees. The committee is expected to finish its investigation later this summer and may issue a declassified report on its findings.

Second Taping System

Meanwhile, highly placed intelligence sources directly knowledgeable about Zubaydah’s torture said some of the interrogation sessions captured on at least 90 videotapes between April and August 2002 showed Zubaydah being subjected to torture methods not approved by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC).

Specifically, these sources said, Zubaydah was subjected to repeated sessions of “water dousing,” a method that at the time interrogators used it on Zubaydah was described as spraying him with extremely cold water from a hose while he was naked and shackled by chains attached to a ceiling in the cell he was kept in at the black site prison.

The OLC did not approve the use of water dousing as an interrogation technique until August 2004. Use of the method is believed to have played a part in the November 2002 death of Gul Rahman, a detainee who was held at an Afghanistan prison known as The Salt Pit and died of hypothermia hours after being doused with water and left in a cold prison cell.

The videotapes of Zubaydah’s interrogation sessions have been destroyed and are now the subject of a criminal inquiry lead by Special Prosecutor John Durham.

But five intelligence sources said in interviews conducted over the past month that they were aware of a second taping system that was set up at the black site prison in Thaliand–possibly one they said that was installed by an outside contractor–which captured Zubaydah’s torture sessions that were stored on computers and separate hard drives.

These sources noted that a similar taping system was also set up at a secret site at Guantanamo about a year later where interrogations of other high-value prisoners were also recorded.

A CIA spokesman did not return calls for comment about the veracity of the claims that another taping system existed at the time Zubaydah was tortured.

However, redacted documents released by the CIA Friday in connection with the destruction of the torture tapes requested “instructions” from agency officials about the “disposition of hard drives and magnetic media” related to the torture sessions.

It was through this second taping system, the intelligence sources allege, that CIA interrogators collected “data” about Zubaydah, specifically, how much mental and physical pain he could endure after each torture session he was subjected to that took place prior to the issuance of OLC legal memos in August 2002.

The data collected from Zubaydah’s torture and the torture of other high-value detainees, these sources asserted, was used to not only assist OLC attorneys John Yoo and Jay Bybee write an August 2002 torture memo, but was also used by former OLC head Steven Bradbury to assist him in writing a separate 2005 “combined techniques” torture memo.

A former National Security official previously told Truthout that Zubaydah “was an experiment. A guinea pig.”

On Friday, the former official said it became clear to some of the interrogators in Thailand that by June 2002, Zubaydah was not the high-value detainee the Bush administration held him out to be.

CIA contractors, however, pressed officials at the agency’s headquarters in Langley to allow them to continue subjecting Zubaydah to torture, the former NSC official claimed, because of the valuable information contractors had gained about specific interrogation techniques.

link – http://www.truthout.org/zubaydahs-torture-detention-subject-senate-intelligence-inquiry58666

Report: Germany may consider Goldman action

Associated Press
April 17, 2010

BERLIN – The German government may consider taking legal action in a case in which Goldman Sachs & Co. is accused of defrauding investors, a newspaper reported Saturday.
The U.S. government alleges Goldman Sachs sold mortgage investments without telling buyers they were crafted with input from a client who was betting on them failing.