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Today's Stories

October 16 / 17, 2004

Alexander Cockburn
The Free Speech Movement and Howard Stern

October 15, 2004

Paul Craig Roberts
Where Did These "Conservatives" Come From?: The Brownshirting of America

Laura Carlsen
Wal-Mart vs. the Pyramids of the Sun and Moon

Greg Bates
Empire of Insanity: Kerry's Iraq Troop Numbers

Michael Donnelly
News from a Swing State: Does Anyone Here Have a Spine?

Katherine Lahey
The Venezuelan "Threat": Why Do Kerry and Bush Fear Hugo Chavez?

Robert Jensen / Pat Youngblood
Election Day Fears

Leah Caldwell
From Supermax to Abu Ghraib: the Masterminds of Torture and Abuse

Website of the Day
An Anti-Billionaire Policy? Why That Would Be Economic Racism


October 14, 2004

Darcy Richardson
The Other Progressive Candidate: the Lonely Crusade of Walt Brown

Willliam A. Cook
Turning Myths into Truth

Laura Santina
Water, Women and War

Evelyn Pringle
Free Speech Banned by Big Pharma: What You Can't Say About Drug Importation

Alan Farago
Lessons from Nature

Rep. Maxine Waters
A Letter to Colin Powell on Haiti

Nicole Colson
Maimed for Oil and Empire



October 13, 2004

Bishop Thomas Gumbleton and Bill Quigley
Aftermath of a Coup: The Other Disaster in Haiti

Sharon Smith
Barak O-Bomb-a?: Democrats Target Iran

Christopher Brauchli
God and the Bush Administration

Mike Whitney
The Real Meaning of the Hamdi Case

Paul de Rooij
Amnesty International: a False Beacon?

Website of the Day
Operation Truth


October 12, 2004

Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz
"Indian Country"

Greg Bates
The Year of Voting Dangerously: a Survey Request of Nader Voters in Swing States

Steven Conn
Progressives as Pawns: Kerry's War on Nader

Jason Leopold
Under Cheney, Halliburton Helped Saddam Siphon Billions from UN Oil-for-Food Program

Security Scholars for a Sensible Foreign Policy
Time for a Change of Course

Timothy J. Freeman
Dying for a Mistake

Pierre Tristam
Deconstructing Bush

Niranjan Ramakrishnan
The 2nd Debate: the Blurring of Act and Audience

Bill and Kathleen Christison
Israel as Sideshow

Website of the Day
John Kerry's Personal Off-Shore Tax Shelters

October 11, 2004

Robert Fisk
Iraq: Unforgivable Betrayals and Broken Promises

Kevin Pina
The Untold Story of Aristide's Departure from Haiti

Patrick Gavin
Rethinking Columbus Day

Chris Floyd
Tribes with Flags in the New Afghanistan

Daniel Wolff
Radioactive Money: Entergy, Political Cash and America's Most Dangerous Nuclear Plant

Walter Brasch
The Only Ones Who Believe Saddam Had WMDs are Bush, Cheney...and 40% of All Americans

Mike Whitney
The Phony Afghan Elections: Ballot of the Disappearing Ink

Ari Shavit
"He Talks to Condi Rice Every Day": an Interview with Sharon's Lawyer

Paul Craig Roberts
The Debates and the Big Lie

Website of the Day
Dylan's Greatest Recording?



October 9 / 10, 2004

Alexander Cockburn
"There Are No Innocents"

Paul de Rooij
Northern Ireland is Still the Issue: a Conversation with Gerry Adams

M. Shahid Alam
Making Sense of Our Times

Laura Carlsen
Protest and Populism in Latin America

Fred Gardner
Pot Shots: ASA Goes to Court

Col. Dan Smith
Bush's Credibility Gap

Paul Craig Roberts
Faith-Based Economics

Greg Bates
What If Nader Critics Get What They Demand?

Joshua Frank
Cobb, the Greens and the Collapse of the Left

Felice Pace
Wilderness, Politics and the Oligarchy: How the Pew Charitable Trust is Smothering the Grassroots Environmental Movement

Walter A. Davis
Of Pynchon, Thanatos and Depleted Uranium

William A. Cook
The Agony of Colin Powell

Phyllis Pollack
Twas No Crank Call Love Affair: London Calling, 25 Years Later

Poets' Basement
Klipschutz, Albert, Ford

Website of the Weekend
Abu Ghraib: the Taguba Annexes


October 8, 2004

Jennifer Loewenstein
The Israeli Invasion of Gaza

Moshe Adler
Edwards' Gambit: He Hoped No One Would Notice the Similarities

David Swanson
Media Blackout: Press Continues to Ignore Labor's Opposition to Iraq War

Dave Zirin
CounterPunch Contest: Let's Name the New DC Baseball Team!

Rep. Ron Paul
The Draft is a Form of Slavery

William S. Lind
Keeping Our SA Up

Samar Assad
Kerry v. Bush: No Difference When It Comes to Israel / Palestine

Jim Ingalls and Sonali Kolhatkar
The Elections in Afghanistan



October 7, 2004

Dave Lindorff
All Out of Volunteers: A Draft is in the Air

Masha Hamilton
Fear in Kandahar

Christopher Brauchli
Master of Corruption: the Ripening Scandals of Tom Delay

Jason Leopold
Is There Still Time to Impeach Bush?

Bruce K. Gagnon
Bombing the Panhandle: Fighting the Pentagon in Rural Florida

Meredith Kolodner
Where is the Urgency?: The Anti-War Movement's Election Year Challenge



October 6, 2004

Jeffrey St. Clair
"Please, Dude, Can I Take Them Out?": Targeting Civilians in Fallujah

Ron Jacobs
Going Nuclear: the Ghost of Edward Teller Lives

Michael Colby
The National Flip-Flop: Suddenly Bush is Unfit to Lead?

Tarif Abboushi
More of the Same: Israel Wins the Debates

Matthew Behrens
Canadian Firms Profit from Iraqi Blood

Mike Whitney
Rethinking WMDs

John Pilger
Stealing Diego Garcia

Ben Tripp
Kerry's "Triumph"

Kevin McKiernan
Cheney's Poison Lab: Wrong Time, Wrong Target

Patrick Cockburn
Elections Will Not End the Fighting in Iraq

Website of the Day
Is There an Islamic Problem?

October 5, 2004

Anthony Loewenstein
Rupert Murdoch and the Marginals: "Personally Creating Outcomes"

Mark Clinton and Tony Udell
The Suicide of an Iraq War Veteran

Greg Bates
Trading Idiots: an Open Letter to Eric Alterman

Dave Lindorff
What's the Frequency, Karl?

Norm Dixon
Why Washington Won't Save Darfur Villagers

Larry Kearney
God Talk and Burning Children

Bill Linville
Dirty Politics in the Land of "Clean" Government

Gary Leupp
What Edwards Should Ask Cheney

Website of the Day
A Guide to Halliburton for Tonight's Debate


October 4, 2004

Diane Christian
The Gates of Hell

Joshua Frank
An Interview with David Cobb

Doug Giebel
Incurious George: What If Bush Didn't Lie?

John Chuckman
Strange Victory: Sen. Obvious and the Pathetic Lump

Ramzy Baroud
Reverse the Picture: Anatomy of a Palestinian Outrage

Julia Stein
Remembering Mario Savio and the FSM

Sean Donahue
Outsourcing Terror: Kerry and Special Forces

Website of the Day
Mapping Mt. St. Helens as She Rocks


October 2 / 3. 2004

Paul Wright
John Kerry on Criminal Justice

Kathleen and Bill Christison
An Exchange with Israeli Historian Bennie Morris

Kathie Helmkamp
My Son Trent: a Marine Who Doesn't Want to Kill

Phillip Cryan
Indigenous Mobilization in Colombia

Lenni Brenner
The First Ex-Catholic Saint: Memories of Mario Savio

Fred Gardner
Pot Shots: In Case You Missed "Montel"

Ron Jacobs
It Did Happen Here: When Neo-Nazis Terrorized Olympia

Ben Tripp
Sticker Shock

William S. Lind
The Grand Illusion: Iraqi Security Forces

Dave Zirin
The Swindle of the Century: Baseball Comes to DC

Dave Lindorff
Lies from the Great Debate

Luscon Pierre-Charles
Haiti's Elections: a High-Tech Sham is Underway

Zoe Moskovitz & Sasha Kramer
Separating Lies from Truth About Haiti

Nelson P. Valdes
Habana Night vs. Latin American Scholars in Vegas: 61 Banned Cuban Academics

Alan Farago
The "Ownership Society" and the End of the Everglades

Nancy Haley
What is the Historical Jesus Trying to Tell Us?

Alex Billet
Long Live The Clash: London Still Calling After 25 Years

Steve Fesenmaier
Save and Burn: The War on Libraries

Poets' Basement
Smith, Holt, Albert


October 1, 2004

Steve Breyman
Kerry's Missed Opportunities

Rose Gentle
My Son Died for a Lie

Lee Sustar
Iran in the Crosshairs

Ralph Nader
What We Didn't Hear at the Debate: Where's the Exit Strategy?

Walter Andrews
We Are Less Secure Now Than Ever

Mike Whitney
Pandora's Government

Mickey Z.
Debate This

Saul Landau
The Iraq Invasion: Lessons from the Pinochet Cases










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Dardagan, Slobodo and Williams
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20,000 Wounded Iraqi Civilians

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Prison Bitch

Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber
True Lies: the Use of Propaganda in the Iraq War

Wendell Berry
Small Destructions Add Up

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Weekend Edition
October 16 / 17, 2004

A Letter to Abraham Foxman

Criticizing Israel is Not Anti-Semitism


Dear Mr. Foxman:

You started your last letter with the sentence: "We are not engaged in a dialogue about the issues you raised in your letter." That is precisely the point, is it not, Mr. Foxman. For many years you have eschewed engaging in a dialogue with those in Israel and the United States who disagree with your views. Your mode of operation for years has been to make charges of racism or insinuation of racism designed to slander and evade. Because your pattern of making such charges, carefully calibrated for the occasion but of the same stigmatizing intent, has served to deter critical freedom of speech, you have become sloppy with your characterizations when it comes to attempts to hold you accountable. Of course citizen groups make charges all the time but their critics and corporate adversaries do review and rebut which keeps both sides more alert to accuracy especially when they desire press coverage. Few groups get the free ride that has been the case of the ADL when it ventures beyond its historic mission into covering the Israeli militaristic regime and its brutalization and slaughter of far more innocent Palestinians it occupies, than the reverse casualties inflicted on innocent Israelis.

Your insensitivity here is legion. You fail to understand that your studied refusal to reflect the condemnations of Israeli military action and mayhem against civilians, by the great Israeli human rights organization B't selem and the major international human rights organizations, contributes to the stereotypic bigotry against Palestinian Arabs and the violent Gulag that imprisons them in the West Bank and Gaza. Yours is more than the "crime of silence" so deservedly condemned in other periods of modern history when despots reigned. You go out of your way to silence or chill others who are raising the same points that B'T selem and Rabbis for Justice and other U.S. and Israeli peace groups, such as Rabbi Lerner's Tikkun initiative, do.

You are not above twisting words of those you take to task in order to be able to deploy the usual semantic vituperatives. My comments related to the Israeli government with the fifth most powerful and second most modern military machine in the world through its prime minister possessing the role of puppeteer to puppets in the White House and Congress. You distorted the comment into "Jews controlling the U.S. government." Shame on you. You know better. If you do not see the difference between those two designations, you yourself are treading on racist grounds. Indeed, you are too willing to justify any violence against innocent Palestinian children, women and men in the mounting thousands on the grounds of inadvertence and security when such casualties are either direct or foreseeable results of planned military operations. Your refusal to condemn bigoted language, cartoons, articles and statements in Israel up to the highest government levels, can be called serious insensitivity to "the other anti-Semitism." Both Jews and Arabs belong to the ancient Semitic tribes of the Middle East either genealogically or metaphorically. There is, as you know so well, anti-Semitism against Jews in many places in the world. There is, as you always ignore, aggressive anti-Semitism against defenseless Arabs in many places in the world and in Israel whose military might and nuclear weapons could destroy the entire Middle East in a weekend.

Consider for example, one of many, many episodes of similar impact excerpted from an essay in CounterPunch by Jules Rabin, "An Israeli Refusnik Visits Vermont, The Man Who Didn't Walk By", August 3, 2004:

The man who "didn't walk by" is Yonatan Shapira, until recently pilot of a Blackhawk helicopter and captain in the elite Israeli Air Force. I met Yonatan not many days ago when he came to speak in my town, Montpelier, Vermont, about a major turning point in his life.

Yonatan is a lover of his country, a composer, and a handler of extraordinary machines. He was dismissed from Israel's air force in 2003 because he refused to take part in aerial attacks in areas of the Occupied Territories of Palestine where there exist large concentrations of civilians liable to become a "collateral damage." In Yonatan's view, such attacks are both illegal and immoral because of the near-inevitability of their killing innocent civilians. In support of his position, Yonatan cites the authority of the Israeli army's own code of ethical behavior, and the fact that, (by a recent reckoning) of 2,289 Palestinians killed by the Israeli Defense Forces in the current Intifada, less than a quarter (550) were bearing arms or were fighters.

At the same time, Yonatan has declared himself absolutely ready to fight in the defense of Israel proper.

* * *

Yonatan was shocked into his refusal to obey orders by two occurrences, among others.

One was the action of a fellow Israeli pilot who fired a 1-ton bomb from his F16 fighter jet, as ordered, at a house in Al-Deredg, where a suspected Palestinian terrorist was staying. Yonatan identifies Al-Deredg as one of the most crowded districts of Gaza, and indeed of the world. Besides the targeted Palestinian, 13 local people were killed in that attack: 2 men, 2 women, and 9 children, one of whom was 2 years old. 160 other people were wounded in the explosion. A 1-ton bomb, Yonatan calculates, has approximately 100 times the explosive power of the type of lethal belts worn by Palestinian suicide bombers. In proportion to the US population and the fatalities of the original 9/11 disaster, now an icon and classic measure of terrorist devastation, the fatalities of that single attack on tiny Gaza (population 1,200,000) were greater by 10% than the fatalities in America's own 9/11.

Nor was the bombing of Al-Deredg unique in the scale of its impact on civilian life. Yonatan has cited the casualties resulting from 7 other targeted assassinations conducted in Palestine by the Israel Defense Forces, where, along with 7 other targeted individuals, 44 bystanders were killed. Taking Palestine's overall population at 3,500,000 and that of the US at 290 million, those 44 bystander deaths would represent, in proportion to the US population, another one and a-third 9/11's.

As a volunteer in Selah, a group that assists victims of Palestinian terror, Yonatan has first-hand knowledge of the appalling effects of the multiple 9/11-scale attacks that Israel has itself experienced, at the hands of Palestinian terrorists. He was nevertheless or consequently appalled by the action in Al-Deredg of his fellow pilot. He considered the means used in the attack, a 1-ton bomb, and its goal, the assassination of one man, to be wildly disproportionate to the attack's predictable collateral effects, and a violation of the rules of engagement concerning which all Israeli soldiers are instructed. Those rules, as Yonatan has understood them, include the obligation to refuse to obey orders that are clearly illegal and immoral.

The other occurrence Yonatan cited, that pushed him to become a refuser, came out of a disturbing exchange he had with the commander of the Israeli Air Force, General Dan Halutz, concerning his refusal to serve on a mission in the Occupied Territories. In Yonatan's words:

In the discussion of my dismissal, I asked General Halutz if he would allow the firing of missiles from an Apache helicopter on a car carrying wanted men, if it were traveling in the streets of Tel Aviv, in the knowledge that that action would hurt innocent civilians who happened to be passing at the time. In answer, the general gave me his list of relative values of people, as he sees it, from the Jewish person who is superior down to the blood of an Arab which is inferior. As simple as that.

As simple as that.

Yonatan is convinced that actions like those of his fellow-pilot and attitudes like those of his commanding general are destroying Israel from within, whatever their effect on Palestine.

* * *

Superficially, Yonatan conforms to a stereotype of a career military officer, air force style. He's tall and lithe, dresses trimly and wears his hair closely clipped.

He departs from the military stereotype in other respects. There's nothing of the eagle in his bearing. He's unassuming, and in conversation and argument, he's almost humble in his appeal to his interlocutor's reason and understanding. He listens and speaks with the innate respect and the close attention of a scholar pursuing an investigation, or a navigator studying a chart.

If you do not condemn such behavior as anti-Semitism against Arabs, by your international stature, you are not restraining the present Israeli government's sense that it can conduct such operations with impunity, with a free pass from moral condemnation by a man so accustomed to moral condemnations.

Attached is a copy of my letter to you of August 5, 2004 in which I urged you once again to address. In addition, would you use the same words in your previous letter regarding my characterization of the puppeteer-puppets relationship to the writings of Tom Friedman, Rabbi Michael Lerner and many other Americans and Israelis of the Jewish faith? If not, why not? Is there a thinly veiled bias working here or would you have to use another one of your semantic sallies portraying them as "self-hating Jews?"

In conclusion, Abraham Foxman has a problem. He is in a time warp and cannot adjust to the new age of total Israeli military domination of the Palestinian people. A majority of the Israeli and Palestinian people believe in a two state solution an independent, viable Palestinian state and a secure Israel. This is the way to settle this conflict and live in peace for future generations. The ADL should be working toward this objective and not trying to suppress realistic discourse on the subject with epithets and innuendos. As former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak stated in Chicago last June, Israel needs to begin disengaging from the occupied territories and not wait for the right Palestinian Authority. The overwhelming preponderance of military force permits this to happen.

If you have not met frequently with the broad and deep Israeli peace movement, you might wish to change your routine so that you can play a part in the historic effort to establish a broad and deep peace between the two Semitic peoples. The exchanges should be videotaped and widely distributed to further the cause of peace and to witness Abraham Foxman dialoguing without his customary lines that evade the issues.


Ralph Nader

Weekend Edition Features for September 18 / 19, 2004

Alexander Cockburn
Forgeries, Fingerprints and Forensic Fakery

Jeffrey St. Clair
High Plains Grifter: Bush's Mask of Anarchy

Patrick Cockburn
Into the Abyss: the Week Iraq's Dream of Peace Fell Apart

Fred Gardner
Pot Shots: Financial Torture (Asset Forfeiture)

Joe Allen
The Comrades Kerry Abandoned: the Real Story of Vietnam Vets Against the War

George Corsetti
Poletown Revisited: Finally, Some Vindication

Scott Handleman
The Knock-Knock of a Sledgehammer: Sequestered in Nablus

Richard Ward
Two Weeks in Beit Arabiya

Conn Hallinan
Ashcroft and Indonesia

Lori Smith
Health Care in America: And Then I Got Sick...

Dave Zirin
Hold the Booyah!: SportsCenter Out of the Middle East

John L. Hess
Rather Will Take the Heat, As Bush's War Deteriorates

Brian J. Foley
W is for Wimp: So Why do Manly Men Love Him?

Mickey Z.
Pat Tillman and Osama bin Laden: Odd Juxtapositions

Poets' Basement
Vest, Landau & Albert

Website of the Weekend
Eye on the NYTs

WWW http://www.counterpunch.org