King: I Have a Dream. Obama: I Have a Drone.

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King: I Have a Dream. Obama: I Have a Drone.

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2013/01/16

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norske
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King: I Have a Dream. Obama: I Have a Drone.
Do you have any ideas of your own?

Art's picture
Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote Art:

Do you have any ideas of your own?

Or you could comment on the article... or not.....

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norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Or you could comment on the article... or not.....
I didn't read the article. Couldn't comment on it. I'm not really that interested in other peoples' ideas.

Art's picture
Art
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Quote Art:

I didn't read the article. Couldn't comment on it. I'm not really that interested in other peoples' ideas.

Yet you felt the need to address me personally. Fascinating....

If you have no intention to read a comment or links from said comment... probably a good idea to keep your thoughts to yourself...

Quote Art: Do you have any ideas of your own?

Followed by:

Quote Art:I'm not really that interested in other peoples' ideas.

Just one of the more obvious examples of the difficulties in attempting to have a rational, honest dialog with you...

I understand the difficulties you must have in coming to terms that Obama is as guilty as Nixon, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton and Cheney/Bush in the criminal actions against the people of the US and the rest of the world... deal with it... or not...

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norske
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Probably if people aren't interested in ideas other than their own, they shouldn't bother learning a language or how to read. It's pretty difficult to avoid being bombarded by ideas outside of ones own head when those skills are obtained.

Ignoring ideas of Dr.'s can save a fortune in health ins. costs. That kind of thing does have its perks...sort of.

Retired Monk -"Ideology is a disease"

polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Probably if people aren't interested in ideas other than their own
When you are in a room full of people who have no ideas to offer of their own, not even a paraphrase, they have nothing left but their own ideas. If I had wanted to have a discussion with Marting Luther King, I would have called up one of his speeches myself. It would have been like Clint Eastwood talking to a chair.

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Art
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Kafka in the Airby JOSEPH GROSSO

As Barack Obama embarks on his second term media discourse predicatively overflows with talk of how he could avoid the final term doldrums. And this of course all will lead toward talk of an alleged legacy from years from now. In that vain, and in a most pressing way, perhaps the legacy question could and should be answered now. Perhaps it should go by the name of Faheem Qureshi, the young man who in 2009 was the sole survivor of the first drone strike that Barack Obama ordered as president. Before that attack Qureshi, still just a teenager, was one of the top students in his class. After having his skull fractured in the attack and almost being blinded brain damage has made it a struggle for him ever since; or Abdulrahman Al-Aulaqi, the 16 year-old American citizen who was killed by a drone strike in Yemen.

There are thousands of such names that have died in the some 300 drone strikes ordered by Obama that have not only turned an entire region into a quasi concentration camp but have ushered in a new era of warfare, one even more callous and impersonal, made up of kill lists, macabre “baseball cards” in the words of one official- an era when an American justice department reserves the right to target and murder American citizens without an ounce of due process and even refuses to issue the legal briefs used to justify such an action.

A report titled Living Under Drones: Death, Injury, and Trauma to Civilians from U.S. Drone Practices in Pakistan published by the International Human Rights and Conflict Resolution Clinic of Stanford Law School and the Global Justice Clinic at New York University School of Law makes the implications of this plain:

Drones hover twenty-four hours a day over communities in northwest Pakistan, striking homes, vehicles, and public spaces without warning. Their presence terrorizes men, women, and children, giving rise to anxiety and psychological trauma among civilian communities. Those living under drones have to face the constant worry that a deadly strike may be fired at any moment, and the knowledge that they are powerless to protect themselves. These fears have affected behavior. The US practice of striking one area multiple times, and evidence that it has killed rescuers, makes both community members and humanitarian workers afraid or unwilling to assist injured victims.

Read more@:http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/01/15/kafka-in-the-air/

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norske
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Members of this very same al quaeda military force have just attacked and occupied an oil refinery in Algeria, taking hostages and, apparently, killing some of them. Their purpose was said to be retribution for France's use of Algerian land for an Air Force base (with approval of the Algerian Government). Their ulterior motive is to kill Americans.

BTW, there was a news item in today's Oregonian about testimony in the trial of terrorists in a plan to kill hundreds of Oregonians at an event in Portland. They were experimenting with bomb impact in the hills around Douglas county. The FBI had recorded phone conversations between the perpetrators and their handlers.

Art's picture
Art
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Quote Art:

Members of this very same al quaeda military force have just attacked and occupied an oil refinery in Algeria, taking hostages and, apparently, killing some of them. Their purpose was said to be retribution for France's use of Algerian land for an Air Force base (with approval of the Algerian Government). Their ulterior motive is to kill Americans.

With all due respect, Art, how does sending in drones, killing innocent civilians in the process, help with this? It seems to me such injustice and state terror would simply turn more people against the U.S. and pro-al qaeda.

Quote Art:

BTW, there was a news item in today's Oregonian about testimony in the trial of terrorists in a plan to kill hundreds of Oregonians at an event in Portland. They were experimenting with bomb impact in the hills around Douglas county. The FBI had recorded phone conversations between the perpetrators and their handlers.

So now what— the FBI should send in the drones?

I must assume, since you don't seem to have a problem with American drone strikes in sovereign countries, if those same criminals had been planning to bomb a city in Canada, then it wouldn't bother you if Canada sent drones into Oregon and killed a lot of innocent Americans in the process. And, if my assumption is wrong, how is that scenario any different than U.S. drone attacks in foreign countries? How is it that the U.S. is entitled to kill innocent civilians in foreign lands, but other countries cannot send in the drones to do the same to al qaeda here? I guess American citizens are just more valuable than citizens in places like Pakistan. Hm-m-m?

Zenzoe
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

The distinction of the US and Pakistan is that if the US were aware of terrorists operating here we'd take action, whereas Pakistan aids, abets and hides Al Queda.
That is not a minor distinction.

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Phaedrus76
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Quote Zenzoe:I must assume, since you don't seem to have a problem with American drone strikes in sovereign countries, if those same criminals had been planning to bomb a city in Canada, then it wouldn't bother you if Canada sent drones into Oregon and killed a lot of innocent Americans in the process. And, if my assumption is wrong, how is that scenario any different than U.S. drone attacks in foreign countries? How is it that the U.S. is entitled to kill innocent civilians in foreign lands, but other countries cannot send in the drones to do the same to al qaeda here? I guess American citizens are just more valuable than citizens in places like Pakistan. Hm-m-m?

A point I continuously make. What's good for the goose is goood for the gander...

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norske
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Quote Phaedrus76:The distinction of the US and Pakistan is that if the US were aware of terrorists operating here we'd take action, whereas Pakistan aids, abets and hides Al Queda. That is not a minor distinction.

One persons terrorist is another persons Freedom Fighter. Not sure of course.... but how do you think the parents of children murdered by US drones consider President Obama and or the psychopaths who pilot drones to be... good guys or terrorists?

By the way... probably a good idea to drop the "we'd" to this or "we'd" do that... Though I am but a token US citizen at this point, myself nor none of my friends, aquaintances or fellow members of VFP support the torture, droning, invasions, bombing, assasinations, murder etc. that the US engages in on a regular basis and in fact consider the US to be the most violent and terrorist nation in the world.... If you support the US taking action against against those the US considers to be "terrorists"... so be it....

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norske
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Dr. King Weeps From His Grave

"The age of Obama has fallen tragically short of fulfilling King’s prophetic legacy. Instead of articulating a radical democratic vision and fighting for homeowners, workers and poor people in the form of mortgage relief, jobs and investment in education, infrastructure and housing, the administration gave us bailouts for banks, record profits for Wall Street and giant budget cuts on the backs of the vulnerable.

As the talk show host Tavis Smiley and I have said in our national tour against poverty, the recent budget deal is only the latest phase of a 30-year, top-down, one-sided war against the poor and working people in the name of a morally bankrupt policy of deregulating markets, lowering taxes and cutting spending for those already socially neglected and economically abandoned. Our two main political parties, each beholden to big money, offer merely alternative versions of oligarchic rule.

The absence of a King-worthy narrative to reinvigorate poor and working people has enabled right-wing populists to seize the moment with credible claims about government corruption and ridiculous claims about tax cuts’ stimulating growth. This right-wing threat is a catastrophic response to King’s four catastrophes; its agenda would lead to hellish conditions for most Americans.

King weeps from his grave. He never confused substance with symbolism. He never conflated a flesh and blood sacrifice with a stone and mortar edifice. We rightly celebrate his substance and sacrifice because he loved us all so deeply. Let us not remain satisfied with symbolism because we too often fear the challenge he embraced. Our greatest writer, Herman Melville, who spent his life in love with America even as he was our most fierce critic of the myth of American exceptionalism, noted, “Truth uncompromisingly told will always have its ragged edges; hence the conclusion of such a narration is apt to be less finished than an architectural finial.”"

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/26/opinion/martin-luther-king-jr-would-wa...

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norske
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how does sending in drones, killing innocent civilians in the process, help with this?
Yes. And don't forgt to mention the children. Lots and lots of children, who seem to be drawn to be in the company of terrorists like bees to honey.
if those same criminals had been planning to bomb a city in Canada, then it wouldn't bother you if Canada sent drones into Oregon and killed a lot of innocent Americans in the process
Why on earth would Canada be killing anybody in Oregon? the FBI seemed to be pretty capable of maintaining law, order and justice in Oregon. Which, by the way, is exactly what the Algerian Government is in the process of doing in Algeria. So far, I haven't heard a single suggestion that drone warfare would be used in either place.

But as you imply, why shouldn't these criminals be just allowed to metasticize and kill civilians throughout the world. After all, they are just good, peace-loving family-oriented human beings who want to be left alone to exercize their deadly hobbies wherever they want. After all, when they get killed they just get madder at us. duh.

The problem with the arguments from all of you Bluebirds and Lollipops people is that you never bothered to examine why the war exists in the first place. If a war is worth being in, it is worth fighting to win with the least possible collateral damage. Drones are the way to do that. If you don't want deaths, don't have wars. If you find yourself in a war, do your country a patriotic favor and at least try to win it. I have yet to see even the slightest attempt to describe how the war can be stopped or what accountability is appropriate for having started it. Just weeping and wailing, muttering and baying at the moon. Nothing even remotely constructive.

You people have nothing but complaints, wailing and outrage. Not a single solution or exit strategy. Not a care in the world about the Americans that will be sitting ducks in the year-long withdrawal process that we will soon be seeing from Afghanistan. Not the slightest discomfort over the ensuing consequences of al queda's future successes once they are left alone to do what they will do. Will you feel better about the next Cole, the next embassy bombing, the next Khobar Towers, the next disaster in New York or Los Angeles that somehow gets past the FBI? Will you proudly stand up at your own family's funeral and crow that your hands are clean because, at least, you didn't fight back in Mali or Afghanistan?

Here's a list of terrorist attacks against America since 1920.

Terrorist Attacks in the U.S. or Against Americans

The following timeline lists terrorist attacks against the United States and Americans living either in the U.S. or abroad.

1920

Sept. 16, New York City: TNT bomb planted in unattended horse-drawn wagon exploded on Wall Street opposite House of Morgan, killing 35 people and injuring hundreds more. Bolshevist or anarchist terrorists believed responsible, but crime never solved.
1975
Jan. 24, New York City: bomb set off in historic Fraunces Tavern killed 4 and injured more than 50 people. Puerto Rican nationalist group (FALN) claimed responsibility, and police tied 13 other bombings to the group.
1979
Nov. 4, Tehran, Iran: Iranian radical students seized the U.S. embassy, taking 66 hostages. 14 were later released. The remaining 52 were freed after 444 days on the day of President Reagan's inauguration.
1982–1991
Lebanon: Thirty US and other Western hostages kidnapped in Lebanon by Hezbollah. Some were killed, some died in captivity, and some were eventually released. Terry Anderson was held for 2,454 days.
1983
April 18, Beirut, Lebanon: U.S. embassy destroyed in suicide car-bomb attack; 63 dead, including 17 Americans. The Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility.
Oct. 23, Beirut, Lebanon: Shiite suicide bombers exploded truck near U.S. military barracks at Beirut airport, killing 241 marines. Minutes later a second bomb killed 58 French paratroopers in their barracks in West Beirut.
Dec. 12, Kuwait City, Kuwait: Shiite truck bombers attacked the U.S. embassy and other targets, killing 5 and injuring 80.
1984
Sept. 20, east Beirut, Lebanon: truck bomb exploded outside the U.S. embassy annex, killing 24, including 2 U.S. military.
Dec. 3, Beirut, Lebanon: Kuwait Airways Flight 221, from Kuwait to Pakistan, hijacked and diverted to Tehran. 2 Americans killed.
1985
April 12, Madrid, Spain: Bombing at restaurant frequented by U.S. soldiers, killed 18 Spaniards and injured 82.
June 14, Beirut, Lebanon: TWA Flight 847 en route from Athens to Rome hijacked to Beirut by Hezbollah terrorists and held for 17 days. A U.S. Navy diver executed.
Oct. 7, Mediterranean Sea: gunmen attack Italian cruise ship, Achille Lauro. One U.S. tourist killed. Hijacking linked to Libya.
Dec. 18, Rome, Italy, and Vienna, Austria: airports in Rome and Vienna were bombed, killing 20 people, 5 of whom were Americans. Bombing linked to Libya.
1986
April 2, Athens, Greece:A bomb exploded aboard TWA flight 840 en route from Rome to Athens, killing 4 Americans and injuring 9.
April 5, West Berlin, Germany: Libyans bombed a disco frequented by U.S. servicemen, killing 2 and injuring hundreds.
1988
Dec. 21, Lockerbie, Scotland: N.Y.-bound Pan-Am Boeing 747 exploded in flight from a terrorist bomb and crashed into Scottish village, killing all 259 aboard and 11 on the ground. Passengers included 35 Syracuse University students and many U.S. military personnel. Libya formally admitted responsibility 15 years later (Aug. 2003) and offered $2.7 billion compensation to victims' families.
1993
Feb. 26, New York City: bomb exploded in basement garage of World Trade Center, killing 6 and injuring at least 1,040 others. In 1995, militant Islamist Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman and 9 others were convicted of conspiracy charges, and in 1998, Ramzi Yousef, believed to have been the mastermind, was convicted of the bombing. Al-Qaeda involvement is suspected.
1995
April 19, Oklahoma City: car bomb exploded outside federal office building, collapsing wall and floors. 168 people were killed, including 19 children and 1 person who died in rescue effort. Over 220 buildings sustained damage. Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols later convicted in the antigovernment plot to avenge the Branch Davidian standoff in Waco, Tex., exactly 2 years earlier. (See Miscellaneous Disasters.)
Nov. 13, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: car bomb exploded at U.S. military headquarters, killing 5 U.S. military servicemen.
1996
June 25, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia: truck bomb exploded outside Khobar Towers military complex, killing 19 American servicemen and injuring hundreds of others. 13 Saudis and a Lebanese, all alleged members of Islamic militant group Hezbollah, were indicted on charges relating to the attack in June 2001.
1998
Aug. 7, Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania: truck bombs exploded almost simultaneously near 2 U.S. embassies, killing 224 (213 in Kenya and 11 in Tanzania) and injuring about 4,500. 4 men connected with al-Qaeda 2 of whom had received training at al-Qaeda camps inside Afghanistan, were convicted of the killings in May 2001 and later sentenced to life in prison. A federal grand jury had indicted 22 men in connection with the attacks, including Saudi dissident Osama bin Laden, who remained at large.
2000
Oct. 12, Aden, Yemen: U.S. Navy destroyer USS Cole heavily damaged when a small boat loaded with explosives blew up alongside it. 17 sailors killed. Linked to Osama bin Laden, or members of al-Qaeda terrorist network.
2001
Sept. 11, New York City, Arlington, Va., and Shanksville, Pa.: hijackers crashed 2 commercial jets into twin towers of World Trade Center; 2 more hijacked jets were crashed into the Pentagon and a field in rural Pa. Total dead and missing numbered 2,9921: 2,749 in New York City, 184 at the Pentagon, 40 in Pa., and 19 hijackers. Islamic al-Qaeda terrorist group blamed. (See September 11, 2001: Timeline of Terrorism.)
2002
June 14, Karachi, Pakistan: bomb explodes outside American consulate in Karachi, Pakistan, killing 12. Linked to al-Qaeda.
2003 1
May 12, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: suicide bombers kill 34, including 8 Americans, at housing compounds for Westerners. Al-Qaeda suspected.
2004
May 29–31, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: terrorists attack the offices of a Saudi oil company in Khobar, Saudi Arabia, take foreign oil workers hostage in a nearby residential compound, leaving 22 people dead including one American.
June 11–19, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: terrorists kidnap and execute Paul Johnson Jr., an American, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. 2 other Americans and BBC cameraman killed by gun attacks.
Dec. 6, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia: terrorists storm the U.S. consulate, killing 5 consulate employees. 4 terrorists were killed by Saudi security.
2005
Nov. 9, Amman, Jordan: suicide bombers hit 3 American hotels, Radisson, Grand Hyatt, and Days Inn, in Amman, Jordan, killing 57. Al-Qaeda claimed responsibility.
2006
Sept. 13, Damascus, Syria: an attack by four gunman on the American embassy is foiled.
2007
Jan. 12, Athens, Greece: the U.S. embassy is fired on by an anti-tank missile causing damage but no injuries.
Dec. 11, Algeria: more than 60 people are killed, including 11 United Nations staff members, when Al Qaeda terrorists detonate two car bombs near Algeria's Constitutional Council and the United Nations offices.
2008
May 26, Iraq: a suicide bomber on a motorcycle kills six U.S. soldiers and wounds 18 others in Tarmiya.
June 24, Iraq: a suicide bomber kills at least 20 people, including three U.S. Marines, at a meeting between sheiks and Americans in Karmah, a town west of Baghdad.
June 12, Afghanistan: four American servicemen are killed when a roadside bomb explodes near a U.S. military vehicle in Farah Province.
July 13, Afghanistan: nine U.S.soldiers and at least 15 NATO troops die when Taliban militants boldly attack an American base in Kunar Province, which borders Pakistan. It's the most deadly against U.S. troops in three years.
Aug. 18 and 19, Afghanistan: as many as 15 suicide bombers backed by about 30 militants attack a U.S. military base, Camp Salerno, in Bamiyan. Fighting between U.S. troops and members of the Taliban rages overnight. No U.S. troops are killed.
Sept. 16, Yemen: a car bomb and a rocket strike the U.S. embassy in Yemen as staff arrived to work, killing 16 people, including 4 civilians. At least 25 suspected al-Qaeda militants are arrested for the attack.
Nov. 26, India: in a series of attacks on several of Mumbai's landmarks and commercial hubs that are popular with Americans and other foreign tourists, including at least two five-star hotels, a hospital, a train station, and a cinema. About 300 people are wounded and nearly 190 people die, including at least 5 Americans.
2009
Feb. 9, Iraq: a suicide bomber kills four American soldiers and their Iraqi translator near a police checkpoint.
April 10, Iraq: a suicide attack kills five American soldiers and two Iraqi policemen.
June 1, Little Rock, Arkansas: Abdulhakim Muhammed, a Muslim convert from Memphis, Tennessee, is charged with shooting two soldiers outside a military recruiting center. One is killed and the other is wounded. In a January 2010 letter to the judge hearing his case, Muhammed asked to change his plea from not guilty to guilty, claimed ties to al-Qaeda, and called the shooting a jihadi attack "to fight those who wage war on Islam and Muslims."
Dec. 25: A Nigerian man on a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit attempted to ignite an explosive device hidden in his underwear. The explosive device that failed to detonate was a mixture of powder and liquid that did not alert security personnel in the airport. The alleged bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, told officials later that he was directed by the terrorist group Al Qaeda. The suspect was already on the government's watch list when he attempted the bombing; his father, a respected Nigerian banker, had told the U.S. government that he was worried about his son's increased extremism.
Dec. 30, Iraq: a suicide bomber kills eight Americans civilians, seven of them CIA agents, at a base in Afghanistan. It's the deadliest attack on the agency since 9/11. The attacker is reportedly a double agent from Jordan who was acting on behalf of al-Qaeda.
2010
May 1, New York City: a car bomb is discovered in Times Square, New York City after smoke is seen coming from a vehicle. The bomb was ignited, but failed to detonate and was disarmed before it could cause any harm. Times Square was evacuated as a safety precaution. Faisal Shahzad pleads guilty to placing the bomb as well as 10 terrorism and weapons charges.
May 10, Jacksonville, Florida: a pipe bomb explodes while approximately 60 Muslims are praying in the mosque. The attack causes no injuries.
Oct. 29: two packages are found on separate cargo planes. Each package contains a bomb consisting of 300 to 400 grams (11-14 oz) of plastic explosives and a detonating mechanism. The bombs are discovered as a result of intelligence received from Saudi Arabia's security chief. The packages, bound from Yemen to the United States, are discovered at en route stop-overs, one in England and one in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
2011
Jan. 17, Spokane, Washington: a pipe bomb is discovered along the route of the Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial march. The bomb, a "viable device" set up to spray marchers with shrapnel and to cause multiple casualties, is defused without any injuries.

2012Sept. 11, Benghazi, Libya: militants armed with antiaircraft weapons and rocket-propelled grenades fire upon the American consulate, killing U.S. ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and three other embassy officials. U.S. secretary of state Hillary Clinton said the U.S. believed that Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, a group closely linked to Al Qaeda, orchestrated the attack.

Read more: Terrorist Attacks in the U.S. or Against Americans — Infoplease.com http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0001454.html#ixzz2ILYR6ryJ

You Bluebirds and Lollipops people are meticulous at noting the sins of the United States around the world. What ever you might think of the Heritage Foundation, at least they have catalogued those terrorist attacks that have been thwarted inside America.

1. Richard Reid—December 2001. A British citizen and self-professed follower of Osama bin Laden who trained in Afghanistan, Richard Reid hid explosives inside his shoes before boarding a flight from Paris to Miami on which he attempted to light the fuse with a match. Reid was caught in the act and apprehended aboard the plane by passengers and flight attendants. FBI officials took Reid into custody after the plane made an emergency landing at Boston’s Logan International Airport.[2]

In 2003, Reid was found guilty on charges of terrorism, and a U.S. federal court sentenced him to life in prison.[3] He is currently incarcerated at a federal maximum-security prison in Colorado.

Saajid Badat was sentenced to 13 years in jail for planning to blow up a passenger plane. The 26-year-old, a religious teacher from Gloucester, was sentenced after he admitted conspiring with fellow Briton Reid. Badat pled guilty in February to the plot to blow up the transatlantic flight on its way to the U.S. in 2001.[4]

2. Jose Padilla—May 2002. U.S. officials arrested Jose Padilla in May 2002 at Chicago’s O’Hare airport as he returned to the United States from Pakistan, where he met with 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and received al-Qaeda training and instructions.[5] Upon his arrest, he was initially charged as an enemy combatant, and for planning to use a dirty bomb (an explosive laced with radioactive material) in an attack in the U.S.[6]

Along with Padilla, Adham Amin Hassoun and Kifah Wael Jayyousi were convicted in August of terrorism conspiracy and material support. It was found that the men supported cells that sent recruits, money, and supplies to Islamic extremists worldwide, including al-Qaeda members. Hassoun was the recruiter and Jayyousi served as a financier and propagandist in the cell. Before his conviction, Padilla had brought a case against the federal government claiming that he had been denied the right of habeas corpus (the right of an individual to petition his unlawful imprisonment). In a five-to-four decision, the U.S. Supreme Court found that the case against him had been filed improperly.[7] In 2005, the government indicted Padilla for conspiring against the U.S. with Islamic terrorist groups.

In August 2007, Padilla was found guilty by a civilian jury after a three-month trial. He was later sentenced by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida to 17 years and four months in prison.[8] He is being held at the same penitentiary as Richard Reid.

3. Lackawanna Six—September 2002. When the FBI arrested Sahim Alwan, Yahya Goba, Yasein Taher, Faysal Galab, Shafal Mosed, and Mukhtar al-Bakri in Upstate New York, the press dubbed them the “Lackawanna Six,” the “Buffalo Six,” and the “Buffalo Cell.” Five of the six had been born and raised in Lackawanna, New York.[9] All six are American citizens of Yemeni descent, and stated that they were going to Pakistan to attend a religious camp, but attended an al-Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan instead. The six men pled guilty in 2003 to providing support to al-Qaeda. Goba and al-Bakri were sentenced to 10 years in prison, Taher and Mosed to eight years, Alwan to nine and a half years, and Galab to seven years.[10] Goba’s sentence was later reduced to nine years after he, Alwan, and Taher testified at a Guantanamo Bay military tribunal in the case against Osama bin Laden’s chief propagandist, Ali Hamza al-Bahlul.[11]

Jaber Elbaneh, one of the FBI’s most wanted and often considered to be a seventh member of the Lackawanna cell, reportedly has been captured in Yemen. It remains to be seen whether he will be tried in the U.S., since the U.S. does not have an extradition treaty with Yemen.[12]

4. Iyman Faris—May 2003. Iyman Faris is a naturalized U.S. citizen, originally from Kashmir, who was living in Columbus, Ohio. He was arrested for conspiring to use blowtorches to collapse the Brooklyn Bridge, a plot devised after meetings with al-Qaeda leadership, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.[13]The New York City Police Department learned of the plot and increased police surveillance around the bridge. Faced with the additional security, Faris and his superiors called off the attack.[14]

Faris pled guilty to conspiracy and providing material support to al-Qaeda and was later sentenced in federal district court to 20 years in prison, the maximum allowed under his plea agreement.[15]

5. Virginia Jihad Network—June 2003. Eleven men were arrested in Alexandria, Virginia, for weapons counts and for violating the Neutrality Acts, which prohibit U.S. citizens and residents from attacking countries with which the United States is at peace. Four of the 11 men pled guilty. Upon further investigation, the remaining seven were indicted on additional charges of conspiring to support terrorist organizations. They were found to have connections with al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, a terrorist organization that targets the Indian government. The authorities stated that the Virginia men had used paintball games to train and prepare for battle. The group had also acquired surveillance and night vision equipment and wireless video cameras.[16] Two more men were later indicted in the plot: Ali al-Timimi, the group’s spiritual leader, and Ali Asad Chandia.

Ali al-Timimi was found guilty of soliciting individuals to assault the United States and was sentenced to life in prison. Ali Asad Chandia received 15 years for supporting Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.[17] Randall Todd Royer, Ibrahim al-Hamdi, Yong Ki Kwon, Khwaja Mahmood Hasan, Muhammed Aatique, and Donald T. Surratt pled guilty and were sentenced to prison terms ranging from three years and 10 months to 20 years. Masoud Khan, Seifullah Chapman, and Hammad Abdur-Raheem were found guilty and later sentenced to prison terms ranging from 52 months to life.[18] Both Caliph Basha Ibn Abdur-Raheem and Sabri Benkhala were acquitted at trial.[19]

6. Nuradin M. Abdi—November 2003. Nuradin M. Abdi, a Somali citizen living in Columbus, Ohio, was arrested and charged in a plot to bomb a local shopping mall. Abdi was an associate of convicted terrorists Christopher Paul and Iyman Faris and admitted to conspiring with the two to provide material support to terrorists. Following his arrest, Abdi admitted to traveling overseas to seek admittance to terrorist training camps, as well as meeting with a Somali warlord associated with Islamists.

Abdi has since pled guilty to conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists, one of the four counts for which he was indicted. He was subsequently sentenced to 10 years in jail per the terms of a plea agreement.[20]

7. Dhiren Barot—August 2004. Seven members of a terrorist cell led by Dhiren Barot were arrested for plotting to attack the New York Stock Exchange and other financial institutions in New York, Washington, D.C., and Newark, New Jersey. They were later accused of planning attacks in England. The plots included a “memorable black day of terror” that would have included detonating a dirty bomb. A July 2004 police raid on Barot’s house in Pakistan yielded a number of incriminating files on a laptop computer, including instructions for building car bombs.[21]

Barot pled guilty and was convicted in the United Kingdom for conspiracy to commit mass murder and sentenced to 40 years.[22] However, in May 2007, his sentence was reduced to 30 years.[23] His seven co-conspirators were sentenced to terms ranging from 15 to 26 years on related charges of conspiracy to commit murder and conspiracy to cause explosion.[24]

8. James Elshafay and Shahawar Matin Siraj—August 2004. James Elshafay and Shahawar Matin Siraj, both reportedly self-radicalized, were arrested for plotting to bomb a subway station near Madison Square Garden in New York City before the Republican National Convention.[25] An undercover detective from the New York City Police Department’s Intelligence Division infiltrated the group, providing information to authorities, and later testified against Elshafay and Siraj.[26]

Siraj was convicted and sentenced to 30 years in prison. Elshafay, a U.S. citizen, pled guilty and received a lighter, five-year sentence for testifying against his co-conspirator.[27]

9. Yassin Aref and Mohammad Hossain—August 2004. Two leaders of a mosque in Albany, New York, were charged with plotting to purchase a shoulder-fired grenade launcher to assassinate a Pakistani diplomat.[28] An investigation by the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, and local police contributed to the arrest. With the help of an informant, the FBI set up a sting that lured Mohammad Hossain into a fake terrorist conspiracy. Hossain brought Yassin Aref, a Kurdish refugee, as a witness. The informant offered details of a fake terrorist plot, claiming that he needed the missiles to murder a Pakistani diplomat in New York City. Both Aref and Hossain agreed to help.[29]

Aref and Hossain were found guilty of money laundering and conspiracy to conceal material support for terrorism and were sentenced to 15 years in prison.[30]

10. Hamid Hayat—June 2005. Hamid Hayat, a Pakistani immigrant, was arrested in Lodi, California, after allegedly lying to the FBI about his attendance at an Islamic terrorist training camp in Pakistan.

Hamid was found guilty of providing himself as “material support” to terrorists and three counts of providing false statements to the FBI.[31] In interviews with the FBI, he stated (correctly) that he specifically requested to come to the United States after receiving training in order to carry out jihad.[32]He was sentenced to 24 years in prison.[33]

11. Levar Haley Washington, Gregory Vernon Patterson, Hammad Riaz Samana, and Kevin James—August 2005. The members of the group were arrested in Los Angeles and charged with conspiring to attack National Guard facilities, synagogues, and other targets in the Los Angeles area. Kevin James allegedly founded Jamiyyat ul-Islam Is-Saheeh (JIS), a radical Islamic prison group, and converted Levar Washington and others to the group’s mission. The JIS allegedly planned to finance its operations by robbing gas stations. After Washington and Patterson were arrested for robbery, police and federal agents began a terrorist investigation, and a search of Washington’s apartment revealed a target list.[34]

James and Washington pled guilty in December 2007. James was sentenced to 16 years in prison and Washington to 22 years. Patterson received 151 months, while Samana was found unfit to stand trial and was initially detained in a federal prison mental facility. He was later sentenced to 70 months in jail.[35]

12. Michael C. Reynolds—December 2005. Michael C. Reynolds was arrested by the FBI and charged with involvement in a plot to blow up a Wyoming natural gas refinery; the Transcontinental Pipeline, a natural-gas pipeline from the Gulf Coast to New York and New Jersey; and a Standard Oil refinery in New Jersey.[36] He was arrested while trying to pick up a $40,000 payment for planning the attack.[37]Shannen Rossmiller, his purported contact, was a Montana judge and private citizen working with the FBI. Rossmiller posed as a jihadist, tricking Reynolds into revealing his plan. The FBI later found explosives in a storage locker in Reynolds’s hometown of Wilkes–Barre, Pennsylvania.[38] Reynolds claimed that he was doing much the same as Rossmiller, and was working as a private citizen to find terrorists.[39]

Reynolds was convicted of providing material support to terrorists, soliciting a crime of violence, unlawful distribution of explosives, and unlawful possession of a hand grenade. He was sentenced to 30 years in prison.[40]

13. Mohammad Zaki Amawi, Marwan Othman El-Hindi, and Zand Wassim Mazloum—February 2006. Amawi, El-Hindi, and Mazloum were arrested in Toledo, Ohio, for conspiring to kill people outside the United States, including U.S. Armed Forces personnel serving in Iraq.[41] The men also conspired to train and arm for a violent jihad against the United States, both domestically and abroad.[42] Training involved use of materials including those found on secure and exclusive jihadist Web sites, downloaded and copied training videos, and materials for jihad training sessions. The men also were found to have provided material support to terrorist organizations and to have verbally threatened attacks on President George W. Bush.[43] The investigation was begun with the help of an informant who was approached to help train the group.[44]

In June 2008, the three men were convicted of conspiring to commit acts of terrorism against Americans overseas, including U.S. military personnel in Iraq, and other terrorism-related violations. Amawi was sentenced to 20 years, El-Hindi to 13 years, and Mazloum to approximately eight years.[45]

14. Syed Haris Ahmed and Ehsanul Islam Sadequee—April 2006. Ahmed and Sadequee, from Atlanta, Georgia, were accused of conspiracy, having discussed terrorist targets with alleged terrorist organizations. They allegedly met with Islamic extremists in the U.S. and gathered videotape surveillance of potential targets in the Washington, D.C., area, including the U.S. Capitol and the World Bank headquarters, and sent the videos to a London Islamist group. Ahmed is said also to have traveled to Pakistan with the goal of joining Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.[46]

Both men were indicted for providing material support to terrorist organizations and pled not guilty.[47] In June 2009, a federal district judge found Ahmed “guilty of conspiring to provide material support to terrorists here and overseas.”[48] Ahmed was subsequently sentenced to 13 years in jail. Sadequee was also found guilty and sentenced to 17 years.[49]

15. Narseal Batiste, Patrick Abraham, Stanley Grant Phanor, Naudimar Herrera, Burson Augustin, Lyglenson Lemorin, and Rotschild Augustine—June 2006. Seven men were arrested in Miami and Atlanta for plotting to blow up the Sears Tower in Chicago, FBI offices, and other government buildings around the country. The arrests resulted from an investigation involving an FBI informant. Allegedly, Batiste was the leader of the group and first suggested attacking the Sears Tower in December 2005.[50]

All of the suspects pled not guilty. On December 13, 2007, Lemorin was acquitted of all charges, but the jury failed to reach a verdict on the other six.[51] The second trial ended in a mistrial in April 2008.[52]In the third trial, the jury convicted five of the men on multiple conspiracy charges and acquitted Herrera on all counts. On November 20, 2009, the five were sentenced to prison terms ranging from six to 13.5 years, with Batiste receiving the longest sentence.[53]

16. Assem Hammoud—July 2006. Conducting online surveillance of chat rooms, the FBI discovered a plot to attack underground transit links between New York City and New Jersey. Eight suspects, including Assem Hammoud, an al-Qaeda loyalist living in Lebanon, were arrested for plotting to bomb New York City train tunnels. Hammoud, a self-proclaimed operative for al-Qaeda, admitted to the plot.[54] He was held by Lebanese authorities but was not extradited because the U.S. does not have an extradition treaty with Lebanon. In June 2008, Lebanese authorities released him on bail.[55] He is awaiting trial before a Lebanese military court.

17. Liquid Explosives Plot—August 2006. British law enforcement stopped a terrorist plot to blow up 10 U.S.-bound commercial airliners with liquid explosives.[56] Twenty-four suspects were arrested in the London area. The style of the plot raised speculation that al-Qaeda was behind it, but no concrete evidence has established a link.

The United Kingdom initially indicted 15 of the 24 arrested individuals on charges ranging from conspiring to commit murder to planning to commit terrorist acts.[57] Eventually, in April 2008, only eight men were brought to trial. In September, the jury found none of the defendants guilty of conspiring to target aircraft, but three guilty of conspiracy to commit murder.[58] The jury was unable to reach verdicts on four of the men. One man was found not guilty on all counts.[59]

18. Derrick Shareef—December 2006. Derrick Shareef was arrested on charges of planning to set off hand grenades in a shopping mall outside Chicago. Shareef reportedly acted alone and was arrested after meeting with an undercover Joint Terrorism Task Force agent. FBI reports indicated that the mall was one of several potential targets, including courthouses, city halls, and government facilities. Shareef, however, settled on attacking a mall in the days immediately preceding Christmas because he believed it would cause the greatest amount of chaos and damage.[60] Shareef was also found to have connections to convicted terrorist Hassan Agujihaad, who was charged with attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction and later sentenced to 35 years in prison.[61]

19. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed—March 2007. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, captured in Pakistan in 2003, was involved in a number of terrorist plots and is one of the most senior bin Laden operatives ever captured.[62] He is being held at the U.S. military detention facility in Guantanamo Bay. In March 2007, Mohammed admitted to helping plan, organize, and run the 9/11 attacks. He also claimed responsibility for planning the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center and the 2002 bombings of nightclubs in Bali and a Kenyan hotel. He has stated that he was involved in the decapitation of Wall Street Journalreporter Daniel Pearl and took responsibility for helping to plan the failed shoe-bomb attack by Richard Reid, along with plots to attack Heathrow Airport, Canary Wharf, Big Ben, various targets in Israel, the Panama Canal, Los Angeles, Chicago, the Empire State building, and U.S. nuclear power stations. He had also plotted to assassinate Pope John Paul II and former President Bill Clinton.

In December 2008, Mohammed and his four co-defendants (Ramzi Binalshibh, Mustafa Ahmad al-Hawsawi, Ali Abd al-Aziz Ali, and Walid Bin Attash) told the military tribunal judge that they wanted to confess and plead guilty to all charges.[63] The judge has approved the guilty plea of Mohammed and two co-defendants but has required mental competency hearings before allowing the other two conspirators to plead guilty. In November 2009, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that Mohammed would be relocated to the United States to face a civilian trial in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.[64] That decision has now been reversed and the Administration announced that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and the other Guantanamo Bay detainees would be prosecuted in military tribunals at Guantanamo.[65]

20. Fort Dix Plot—May 2007. Six men were arrested in a plot to attack Fort Dix, a U.S. Army post in New Jersey. The plan involved using assault rifles and grenades to attack and kill U.S. soldiers. Five of the alleged conspirators had conducted training missions in the nearby Pocono Mountains. The sixth helped to obtain weapons. The arrests were made after a 16-month FBI operation that included infiltrating the group. The investigation began after a store clerk alerted authorities after discovering a video file of the group firing weapons and calling for jihad. The group has no known direct connections to any international terrorist organization.[66]

In December 2008, five of the men were found guilty on conspiracy charges but were acquitted of charges of attempted murder.[67] Four were also convicted on weapons charges. The five men received sentences ranging from 33 years to life plus 30 years. The sixth co-defendant pled guilty to aiding and abetting the others in illegal possession of weapons and was sentenced to 20 months in jail.[68]

21. JFK Airport Plot—June 2007. Four men plotted to blow up “aviation fuel tanks and pipelines at the John F. Kennedy International Airport” in New York City. They believed that such an attack would cause “greater destruction than in the Sept. 11 attacks.” Authorities stated that the attack “could have caused significant financial and psychological damage, but not major loss of life.”[69]

Russell Defreitas, the leader of the group, was arrested in Brooklyn. The other three members of the group—Abdul Kadir, Kareem Ibrahim, and Abdel Nur—were detained in Trinidad and extradited in June 2008. Kadir and Nur have links to Islamic extremists in South America and the Caribbean. Kadir was an imam in Guyana, a former member of the Guyanese Parliament, and mayor of Linden, Guyana. Ibrahim is a Trinidadian citizen and Nur is a Guyanese citizen.[70]

In 2010, Kadir was found guilty on five counts and sentenced to life in prison. In February, both Defreitas and Nur were also found guilty. Defreitas was sentenced to life in prison, while Nur was sentenced to 15 years.[71] The final conspirator, Kareem Ibrahim, was convicted in May 2011 and faces up to life in prison.[72]

22. Hassan Abujihaad—March 2008. Hassan Abujihaad, a former U.S. Navy sailor from Phoenix, Arizona, was convicted of supporting terrorism and disclosing classified information, including the location of Navy ships and their vulnerabilities, to Babar Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan, the alleged administrators of Azzam Publication Web sites (the London organization that provided material support and resources to terrorists). Abujihaad was arrested in March 2007 and pled not guilty to charges of supporting terrorism in April 2007. In May 2008, he was convicted by a jury and sentenced to 10 years in prison.[73] In 2010, his conviction was upheld in a federal court of appeals.[74] Both Babar Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan are being held in Britain on anti-terrorism charges and are fighting extradition to the U.S.[75]

23. Christopher Paul—June 2008. Christopher Paul is a U.S. citizen from Columbus, Ohio. He joined al-Qaeda in the 1990s and was involved in conspiracies to target Americans in the United States and overseas. In 1999, he became connected to an Islamic terrorist cell in Germany, where he was involved in a plot to target Americans at foreign vacation resorts. He later returned to Ohio and was subsequently arrested for conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction—specifically, explosive devices—“against targets in Europe and the United States.” Paul pled guilty to the charges and was sentenced to 20 years in prison.[76]

24. Synagogue Terror Plot—May 2009. On May 20, 2009, the New York Police Department announced the arrest of James Cromitie, David Williams, Onta Williams, and Laguerre Payen for plotting to blow up New York-area Jewish centers and shoot down planes at a nearby Air National Guard Base.[77] The four had attempted to gain access to Stinger missiles and were caught in the act of placing bombs in the buildings and in a car. (The bombs were duds, because undercover agents sold the four defendants fake explosives as part of an ongoing sting operation). All four men were found guilty. In June 2011, James Cromitie, David Williams, and Onta Williams were sentenced to 25 years in prison.[78] Laguerre Payen’s sentencing has been postponed pending psychiatric evaluation.[79]

25. Najibullah Zazi—September 2009 . Najibullah Zazi, a 24-year-old Afghane, was arrested after purchasing large quantities of chemicals used to make a TATP bomb, the same type of weapon used in the 2005 bombing of the London Underground and the 2001 shoe-bomb plot. Zazi had traveled to Pakistan, where he received instruction in bomb-making and attended an al-Qaeda training camp. Zazi allegedly planned to detonate TATP bombs on the New York City subway.[80]It has since been found that the plot was directed by senior al-Qaeda leadership in Pakistan.[81]

Najibullah Zazi’s father, Mohammed Wali Zazi, was also indicted for obstructing justice, witness tampering, and lying to the FBI in attempts to help his son cover up plans for his attack.[82]A cousin of Zazi, Amanullah Zazi, also publicly admitted that he played a role in Zazi’s 2009 plot. Amanullah pled guilty in secret and agreed to become a government witness in federal court in Brooklyn against Najibullah’s father.[83] The father has since been found guilty, and faces up to 40 years in prison.[84]Najibullah Zazi pled guilty, as the result of a plea bargain, and remains in jail. He is currently awaiting sentencing.[85]

At least three other individuals have since been arrested on allegations of conspiring to carry out the attack with Zazi. One of them, New York religious leader Ahmad Afzali, has pled guilty to charges of lying to federal agents about informing Zazi that he was being investigated by authorities. [86] As part of a plea deal, Afzali was sentenced to time served and ordered to leave the country within 90 days.[87] A second man, Zarein Ahmedzay has also pled guilty to conspiring to use weapons of mass destruction in the foiled plot and lying to investigators. Adis Medunjanin has pled not guilty to conspiracy to commit murder in a foreign country and to receiving terrorist training.[88] Ahmedzay and Medunjanin are thought to have traveled to Pakistan with Zazi, and to have met with wanted al-Qaeda operative Adnan El Shukrijumah, who has also been charged in the plot.[89] A fourth individual, Abid Nasser, has also been indicated in the plot led by Zazi, as well as other plots in England and Norway. He is currently in the United Kingdom facing extradition to the United States.[90] Also charged in the plot are, Tariq Ur Rehman, and a fifth defendant known as “Ahmad,” “Sohaib,” or “Zahid.” Both El Shukrijumah and Rehman are not in custody.[91]

26. Hosam Maher Husein Smadi —September 2009. Smadi, a 19-year-old Jordanian, was apprehended in an attempt to plant a bomb in a Dallas skyscraper. Originally identified through FBI monitoring of extremist chat rooms, Smadi was arrested and charged after agents posing as terrorist cell members gave Smadi a fake bomb, which he later attempted to detonate.[92] Smadi was found guilty and sentenced to 24 years in prison.[93]

27 . Michael Finton —September 2009. Michael Finton, an American citizen, was arrested on September 23, 2009, by undercover FBI agents after attempting to detonate a car bomb filled with what he believed to be close to one ton of explosives outside the Paul Findley Federal Building and Courthouse in downtown Springfield, Illinois. The blast was also intended to destroy the nearby office of Representative Aaron Schock (D–IL).[94] Evidence presented against Finton has shown that he expressed a desire to become a jihadist fighter and was aware that his planned attack would cause civilian injuries. He has been arrested on charges of attempted murder of federal employees and attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. Finton pled guilty and was sentenced to 28 years in prison.[95]

28. Tarek Mehanna and Ahmad Abousamra—October 2009. Tarek Mehanna, previously indicted for lying to the FBI about the location of terrorist suspect Daniel Maldonado, was arrested on October 21, 2009, on allegations of conspiracy to kill two U.S. politicians, American troops in Iraq, and civilians in local shopping malls, as well as conspiracy to provide material support to a terrorist organization.[96]Ahmad Abousamra, his co-conspirator, remains at large in Syria. However, both were indicted on charges of providing and conspiring to provide material support to terrorists, conspiracy to killAmericans in a foreign country, and conspiracy to provide false information to law enforcement.[97]

The two men are not believed to be associated with any known terrorist organization.[98] Mehanna has pled not guilty to charges against him, while Abousamra remains at large in Syria.[99]

29. The Christmas Day Bomber—2009. Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a 23-year-old Nigerian engineering student living in London, boarded a plane from Nigeria to Amsterdam and then flew from Amsterdam to the U.S. It was on this second flight when he attempted to detonate a bomb hidden in his underwear as the plane began to land. The device ignited but did not detonate, and passengers quickly stopped Abdulmutallab from trying again, leading to his arrest by U.S. authorities upon landing in Detroit. The bomb, containing the explosives PETN and TATP, was similar to the failed device used by Richard Reid in his shoe in 2001.

Media accounts following the plot indicate that Abdulmutallab admits involvement with al-Qaeda in Yemen. He has since pled not guilty to charges including conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism and attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction.[100] He remains in custody in the U.S. awaiting further trial.

30. Raja Lahrasib Khan—March 2010. Chicago taxi driver Raja Lahrasib Khan, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Pakistan, was arrested by the Chicago FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force on two counts of providing material support to a foreign terrorist organization. According to the charges, Khan was affiliated with Ilyas Kashmiri, leader of the al-Qaeda-linked extremist group Harakat ul-Jihad-I-Islami in Kashmir, and has previously been indicted in the U.S. on terrorism charges.[101]

Khan originally transferred $950 to Pakistan, to be delivered to Kashmiri, and later attempted to send around $1,000 provided to him by an undercover agent to Kashmiri by having his son carry the money to England, where Khan then planned to rendezvous with him and carry the money the rest of the way to Pakistan. His son was stopped by government agents at Chicago’s O’Hare airport before leaving the country. The criminal complaint filed against Khan also alleges that he had discussed plans to bomb an unnamed sports stadium in the United States.

Khan has since pled not guilty to two counts of providing material support to terrorism.[102] If convicted, Khan faces up to 15 years in prison for each count of providing material support.[103]

31. Faisal Shahzad—May 2010. Faisal Shahzad, a naturalized citizen from Pakistan, attempted to detonate explosives in an SUV parked in Times Square. After explosives training in Pakistan, he is said to have received $12,000 from entities affiliated with the terrorist organization Tehrik-e-Taliban to fund the attack. Following the failed bombing attempt, Shahzad attempted to flee the country to Dubai, but was arrested before the flight was able to leave New York’s JFK airport.[104]

Shahzad pled guilty to 10 counts, including conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism and to use a weapon of mass destruction.[105] He was sentenced to life in prison and is being held at the same Colorado maximum-security prison as Richard Reid and Jose Padilla.[106]

32. Paul G. Rockwood, Jr. and Nadia Piroska Maria Rockwood—July 2010. Paul G. Rockwood, Jr., an American citizen, became an adherent to Anwar al-Awlaki’s ideology of violent jihad after converting to Islam. In studying al-Awlaki’s teachings, Rockwood came to believe it was his religious responsibility to seek revenge against anyone who defiled Islam. He created a list of 15 individuals to be targeted for assassination, including several members of the U.S. military. Rockwood is said to have researched explosive techniques and discussed the possibility of killing his targets with a gunshot to the head or through mail bombs. Nadia Piroska Maria Rockwood, Paul’s wife, knowingly transported the list to Anchorage, Alaska, to share with an unnamed individual who apparently shared Rockwood’s ideology. The list then made it into the hands of the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) in Anchorage.

Paul was charged with making false statements to the FBI in a domestic terrorism charge, while Nadia was charged with making false statements to the FBI in connection to the case against her husband. Paul was sentenced to eight years in prison, while his wife was sentenced to five years probation.[107]

33. Farooque Ahmed—October 2010. Pakistani-American Farooque Ahmed was arrested following an FBI investigation into plots to attack the Washington, D.C., subway. Ahmed is said to have conducted surveillance on the D.C. Metrorail system on multiple occasions, and was in contact with undercover FBI agents whom he believed to be individuals affiliated with al-Qaeda.[108] According to an unsealed affidavit, Ahmed wanted to receive terrorist training overseas and become a martyr. The affidavit also indicates that he sought to specifically target military personnel in his bombing attempt.[109]

Ahmed pled guilty to charges of material support and collecting information for a terrorist attack on a transit facility. He was then immediately sentenced to 23 years in prison.[110]

34. Air Cargo Bomb Plot—October 2010. Two packages shipped from Yemen to Chicago-area synagogues were discovered to contain explosive materials of the same type used by Richard Reid and Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab in previously thwarted bombing attempts.[111] The packages contained printer cartridges filled with the explosive material and were identified with the help of intelligence tips from Saudi Arabian authorities while in transit on cargo planes in the United Kingdom and Dubai.[112]While no arrests have been made, the Yemen-based Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has claimed responsibility for the failed attack.

35. Mohamed Osman Mohamud—November 2010. Mohamed Osman Mohamud, a 19-year-old Somali-American, was arrested after attempting to detonate a car bomb at a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland, Oregon. The bomb was composed of inert explosives given to him by undercover FBI agents. Mohamud had previously sought to travel overseas to obtain training in violent jihad. Having failed in that attempt, he wanted to commit an attack that would cause mass casualties to individuals and their families.[113] Mohamud has pled not guilty to the charges.[114]

36. Antonio Martinez—December 2010. Antonio Martinez, a 21-year-old American citizen also known as Muhammad Hussain, planned to bomb a military recruiting center in Maryland. The FBI learned of the plot from an unnamed informant. Martinez was arrested after attempting to detonate a fake explosive device supplied by FBI agents. He has been charged with attempted murder of federal officers and employees, as well as attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction.[115] He has pled not guilty and awaits further trial.[116]

37. Khalid Ali-M Aldawsari—February 2011. Khalid Ali-M Aldawsari, a Saudi citizen studying in Lubbock, Texas, was arrested by the FBI after placing an order for the toxic chemical phenol. Both the chemical supplier and the freight shipping company became suspicious of the order, which could be used to make an improvised explosive device (IED), and alerted the FBI and local police. Surveillance of Aldawsari’s e-mail turned up a list of potential “nice targets” including dams, nuclear power plants, military targets, a nightclub, and the Dallas residence of former President George W. Bush. The search also recovered plans to acquire a forged U.S. birth certificate and multiple driver’s licenses. Aldawsari seems to have considered using these documents to obtain rental cars for use in vehicle bombings. He has pled not guilty to charges of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction and faces up to life in prison.[117]

38. Ahmed Ferhani and Mohamed Mamdouh—May 2011. Ahmed Ferhani of Algeria, and Moroccan-born Mohamed Mamdouh, a U.S. citizen, were arrested by the New York Police Department after attempting to purchase a hand grenade, guns, and ammunition to attack on an undetermined Manhattan synagogue. The men planned on disguising themselves as Orthodox Jews in order to sneak into the synagogue.[118] Reports have also cited the Empire State Building as a possible second target.[119]Both men face charges of conspiracy to commit a crime of terrorism and conspiracy to commit a hate crime, as well as criminal possession of a weapon.[120]

39. Abu Khalid Abdul-Latif and Walli Mujahidh—June 2011. In a raid on a warehouse in Seattle, the FBI arrested Abu Khalid Abdul-Latif and Walli Mujahidh. The two suspects had arranged to purchase weapons from an unnamed informant in contact with the Seattle Police Department. They were looking to purchase automatic machine guns and grenades in preparation for an attack on a military recruiting station in Seattle. Since the arrests have been made, authorities have learned that Abdul-Latif, a felon and Muslim convert, had initially planned to attack the Joint Base Lewis–McChord with his friend, Los Angeles resident Mujahidh. The target was later changed to the Seattle Military Entrance Processing Station for undisclosed reasons. [121]

The men have been charged with conspiracy to murder officers and employees of the United States government, conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, and possession of firearms in furtherance of crimes of violence. Abdul-Latif has also been charged with two counts of illegal possession of firearms.[122] Both men are in custody awaiting trial.

40. Emerson Winfield Begolly—August 2011. Begolly, a moderator and supporter for the internationally known Islamic extremist Web forum Ansar al-Mujahideen English Forum (AMEF), was arrested on charges of terrorist actions involving solicitation to commit a crime of violence and distribution of information in relation to explosives, destructive devices, and weapons of mass destruction. Through his profile on AMEF, the Pennsylvania-born man solicited others to engage in violent acts of terrorism against post offices, water plants, military facilities, bridges, train lines, and Jewish schools. Begolly also used the Web site to post a downloadable 101-page document that contains information on how to manufacture chemical explosives. The instructional document is loosely linked to al-Qaeda’s former top chemical and biological weapons expert Abu Khabbab al Misri. Begolly pled guilty to counts of soliciting others to engage in acts of terrorism within the U.S., and attempting to use a 9-mm semi-automatic handgun during an assault upon inquiring FBI agents. He is currently awaiting further trial.[123]

How many American deaths would you be ignoring and excusing, had these actions been successful? But hey. What the hell. We have due process. It's all good. Once al quaeda has it's own country in Mali, then they will fight and kill us as a sovereign country. That will make it all better, and we can go back to the daisy cutters and shock and awe that you all love so much. No children killed there. How do you want to end this insanity? What do you want to do then? Tell us all about this land of bluebirds and rainbows, daisies and lollipops that you envision. Try thinking things through.

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Art
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Dr. Cornel West: Poverty in America with Thom Hartmann

http://www.commondreams.org/video/2013/01/17

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norske
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Probably if people aren't interested in ideas other than their own, they shouldn't bother learning a language or how to read.
As has become so common, you didn't bother with the context of my comment. Goes back to my initial comment.

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Art
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Quote Art:The problem with the arguments from all of you Bluebirds and Lollipops people is that you never bothered to examine why the war exists in the first place. If a war is worth being in, it is worth fighting to win with the least possible collateral damage. Drones are the way to do that. If you don't want deaths, don't have wars. If you find yourself in a war, do your country a patriotic favor and at least try to win it. I have yet to see even the slightest attempt to describe how the war can be stopped or what accountability is appropriate for having started it. Just weeping and wailing, muttering and baying at the moon. Nothing even remotely constructive.

Followed by:

Quote Art:How many American deaths would you be ignoring and excusing, had these actions been successful? But hey. What the hell. We have due process. It's all good. Once al quaeda has it's own country in Mali, then they will fight and kill us as a sovereign country. That will make it all better, and we can go back to the daisy cutters and shock and awe that you all love so much. No children killed there. How do you want to end this insanity? What do you want to do then? Tell us all about this land of bluebirds and rainbows, daisies and lollipops that you envision. Try thinking things through.

As I have mentioned previously... it is virtually impossible to have a rational dialog with someone of such moral flexability and ability to rationalize... not to mention the numerous straw man, false framing of the narrative...

I am personally opposed to violence of any sort... and while I disagree with the use of terrorism... whether it be from the US... or nation states or societies who are unable to attack the US with a "legitimate" military... I do understand why so many wish to inflict such violence, death and destruction upon the US... So would I if the US murdered my family...

The US has lied, invaded, assassinated, tortured, death squads, kidnapped, indefinite detention, murdered, bombed, so many nationalities over the past 100 years... from the Philippines, Mexico, Spain, Korea, South Viet Nam, North Viet Nam, Laos, Cambodia, Guatemala, Nicaraqua, Croatia, Lebanon, Libya, Iran, Panama, Somalia, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan... and many others for so long that I would be surprised if there wasn't a long line of people and nation states waiting to inflict a little "blow back" upon the US.... Perhaps if people in the US felt daily, what those in other nations being attacked by the US feel every... single... day.. they would begin to understand just how evil the US has been to those in other nations....

The US spends over $1.3 TRILLION on its war machine... more than the rest of the world... COMBINED. Currently, the US has troops in 120 countries around the world. It has bombed 23 countries since WWII, and attempted to overthrow over 40 governments of foreign countries. The CIA has overthrown functional constitutional democracies in over 20 countries . It has manipulated elections in dozens of countries. It has created and financed standing armies and directed them to fight. It has trained death squads for brutal right wing regimes.... Yet these numerous instances of terrorism by the US... and this is just a partial list... are seen as examples of the United States bringing "democracy" and "freedom" to oppressed people. Apprently and astonishing as it is... when the US government lies, Art and many Americans believe the lies, while our politicians maintain that certain other countries represented "grave threats" to our national security or to our "vital interests." In most instances, they were such threats only on the premise that any nation that dares to disobey our government's arbitrary commands constitutes a "threat," that any nation that will not do as it is told is a threat. Any nation which acts in the interest of its own people must be destroyed and replaced with brutal dictators willing to do the US bidding. America... thy will be done... all for increased corporate control, dominance and profit...

The US is responsible for the deaths of over 20 MILLION people... it would take quite a few suicide bombs to equal the same level of carnage that the US has visited upon the rest of the world...

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norske
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As I said, absolutely no constructive vision toward the future. No thought toward how it would be done. Just a rehash of America's sordid history and personal slander about my morals. You have nothing of value to offer. Whine, complain, bay at the moon, tear out your hair, chew on the scenery. It's a bore.

Binary thought is really simple. Also lazy. Doesn't require much thought. Just pick a side and bellow it to the heavens. Cite all the so-called authorities that agree with you. Dismiss all the rest. It's a common characteristic of the truly pious.

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Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote Phaedrus76:The distinction of the US and Pakistan is that if the US were aware of terrorists operating here we'd take action, whereas Pakistan aids, abets and hides Al Queda. That is not a minor distinction.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pakistan%E2%80%93United_States_relations#Al...

As for Art, "terrorism" by the powerless against the powerful must at some point be recognized for what it is: blowback as a result of American imperialism. In fact, I suggest you read Chalmers Johnson's Blowback and his The Sorrows of Empire— oh, but no. I forgot. You have no interest in "other people's ideas." (i.e., education)

You want solutions, but you have no interest in other people's ideas! Oye! One hesitates to bother, in the face of such stubborn resistence to moving forward toward peace and justice. Regardless, the following solution makes a whole lot more sense to me than your excuses for American state terrorism:

Quote Chalmers Johnson:

What would make the United States more secure is not more money spent on JCET teams or espionage satellites [or drones] to find and retaliate against terrorists. Instead, the United States should bring most of its overseas land-based forces home and reorient its foreign policy to stress leadership through example and diplomacy.

Zenzoe
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Doing away with the criminal CIA would be a start... that... and putting an end to the one party oligarchy/corporatocracy....

I ran into several CIA types when I was in the army... which eventually led me to John Stockwell (among others). I was at Cal Poly when Stockwell gave this speech in 87'.

http://www.the-peoples-forum.com/cgi-bin/readart.cgi?ArtNum=2025

Which was just a short primer of the crimes of US empire, hegemony and the CIA acting as the private cops for the corporate elite....

Fascinating to read people attempting to justify, excuse or apologize for torture, rendition, dronings of innocent children (Or as psychopaths euphemistically lable it "collateral damage")

"To not know history, it's as if you were born yesterday." Howard Zinn

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norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Doing away with the criminal CIA would be a start... that... and putting an end to the one party oligarchy/corporatocracy....
Ah, you do have an idea. I would like to see the CIA completely out of the combat business. Just sticking to intelligence gathering. It is currently able to conduct too many operations under the shroud of secrecy. It would be a complicated problem, however. First, a major country (or even a small country) can't survive without intelligence. Intellligence gathering is, by its very nature, a covert thing. I used to feel that everything should be out in the open. I no longer feel that way. There are hundreds of intelligence acencies in the United States Government, so we could probably do without the CIA.

That would leave the military operations with some other entities. Either Blackwater types or uniformed soldiers. Are there other options? I dunno. The other side would have a pretty distinct advantage since they masquerade as ordinary people and don't mind blowing themselves up and sacrificing their friends and children. Great anti-American propaganda stuff.

I'm certainly nor military expert, but this is the way it looks to me. Perhaps you have some more powrful ideas. This is something we can talk about.

led me to John Stockwell (among others). I was at Cal Poly when Stockwell gave
I used to hate the CIA for all the same reasons that you do now. I still hate it, but I'm not convinced that they, or some agency like it, are not necessary for national security. You don't have to like these people in order to validate their value. I don't much like the people who work in slaughter houses, either, but then, I don't know any of them personally.

I don't think we have a one-party oligarchy.

BTW, I missed how the Cornell West article had anything to do with drones. It was certainly related to King's ideas about poverty in America, but I didn't realize that this was a part of the topic of this thread. It seemed like kind of a "duh" point. We probably completely agree on it.

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Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Art, I really wish you could let go of the idea that those evil terrorists out to get us are not just the blowback of empire in the first place. You seem to think that they are worth our global violence and collateral damage for some actual threat the pose to "us," and the only way that could be true would be were our empire not evil. On the sainted Chalmers Johnson, I testify that there ain't no other kind of empire than evil. They are all about domination and occupation/exploitation, and they are all full of their own self-justifying shit.

There is no real justification for the Bush/Cheney failure to accept the Taliban's good faith offer to give us bin Laden if we presented a legal warrant, easy to do, and a Third Party State would faciliate the transfer of custody. Going to war when that was on the table was criminal. And totally stupid unless your goal was occupation and exploitation instead of "national defense" or even "global security." We had Tehran on our side after 9/11. How do you screw that up? Easy. You follow the lusts of empire.

I will not justify Obama's imperial reign even if I can explain why it is first, structural, and secondly more a learning opportunity than a time for disappointment rants. norske and I have disagreed about how personally or judgementally we should treat Obama as we indict the empire. Nothing offers a more telling picture of how wrong the Empire's violence is than the collateral damage of the drones. Were the mission worth anything, it would be different, but it ain't worth a bucket of warm spit.

It always takes us way too long to exit a wrong war. In for a dime, in for a dollar. Don't want to waste all those wasted lives. Rationality and war do not mix. War is just a fucking waste. Opportunities lost. Regrets explained away as the fault of those evil ones over there. Blind spots heating up to fire away with pure righteousness. We had no choice.

I have heard the justifications for the drones, and I reject them. It is not enough to 'save American lives.' It is almost impossible to find, not a justification, but an explanation that is satisfactory for war against civilians. Americans should recall the outrage of the Redcoats at the Revolutionaries hiding behind bushes instead of standing and fighting. I think we have to give a pass to wars of national defense and to those who have their families there rather than on the other side of the world. They have a right to use any means necessary.

drc2
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Apr. 26, 2012 11:15 am
Quote Art:

...The other side would have a pretty distinct advantage since they masquerade as ordinary people and don't mind blowing themselves up and sacrificing their friends and children...

Yes, those people on the other side bear no resemblance to normal human beings with normal longings, normal wishes to live in peace and prosperity, and normal reactions to abnormal circumstances. They're evil through and through, and we'd damn sure better remember that, as we great humanitarians and lovers of peace destroy them, their families, the infrastructure where they live and dominate their existence— because we're the good guys and they're the bad guys, and that justifies whatever we decide to do to them.

Quote Art:

... I used to hate the CIA for all the same reasons that you do now. I still hate it, but I'm not convinced that they, or some agency like it, are not necessary for national security. You don't have to like these people in order to validate their value. I don't like the people who work in slaughter houses, either.

Yeah, I see what you mean— the necessity of national security = slaughtering innocents abroad; the necessity of a meaty diet = slaughtering and torturing innocent animals here. It's all so necessary, so good, so unavoidable: Gotta make those tough decisions, just like real men. To hell with Dr. King and his wimpy values. Down with the soft fantasies of utopia. Kill, kill, kill the bastards. It's the manly thing to do.

Zenzoe
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Art, I really wish you could let go of the idea that those evil terrorists out to get us are not just the blowback of empire in the first place
It matters not why they want to kill us. The history of man is the history of connected wrongs. They want to kill us now. At least I credit you for looking at the origins of this war. It is a very complicated judgment to make. Your conclusion is different than mine. Past killings of Americans could be excused because America has been so mean in the world. Turn the other cheek. 9/11 was a big deal. Couple that with the spreading and metasticizing of the militant threat across South Asia and the predicament that W left us in finally convinced me that action was justified. I initially opposed the hunt for UBL, but I decided that the nation needed it.

I'm not sure that a major nation can operate in the world without some degree of "imperialism" any more than a democracy can operate without some degree of socialism. All the major economic forces are engaged in it to some extent. It's a buzzword. Better to talk about "exploitation". First of all, I do not like any nation putting up with international terrorism and "Impirialism" over religion (al quaeda) or ethnic cleansing (Rwanda). I wanted intervention in the second, but bitterly accepted that the US had no national interest there. This simply is not true in the first. al quaeda has the international reach to come after the United States. That's been proven.

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Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Were we not there, they would not come here. Were we not there, they would not be doing anything to us anywhere. Until we decide to go away, they have really good reasons to come here and bring this shit back to us. The drones only add to their motivation to come and kill us, and gives them reasons neutral parties would condone. I am not a neutral party, so I want to end their motivation to come and kill us, particularly when there is no God Damned reason to be in this war in the first place.

The drones suck even if you wanted to win this war. Or thought there was a "win" out there somewhere. Or even just were scared of 'terrorism' which is definitely low grade compared to the Soviet nukes or even Hitler's armies. The only bone I pick with norske is how much to make it about Obama. I think it is about everything else first.

drc2
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Apr. 26, 2012 11:15 am
other side bear no resemblance to normal human beings with normal longings, normal wishes to live in peace and prosperity, and normal reactions to abnormal
Did you have anything to say about whether there should be a CIA? That's what we were discussing. It's a bit counter-productive to cherry-pick segments from one discussion to apply to other topics. It sort of messes up context.

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Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

I believe the thread is about the drones, per se. As to the CIA, I consider it one of the pathological developments leading to and constituting much of the tragedy of empire. My animus toward the Bush Crime Family has a lot to do with their 'agency' work. I find the idea of this "intelligence" to have morphed with deep imperial irony.

The idea that nations spy upon one another is built into the fabric of our current international culture. I am against our own security state and secrecy because I believe almost everything that matters is known by those whose need to know is geopolitical realism and our 'need not to know' is ideological and stinks of denial. The worst political miscalculations come from Cheneyesque paranoia about what they "might" have instead of us all knowing pretty much what there is. People under threat have a dilemma, do they expose their nakedness or act as if they had an arsenal? Which way will save them from us? They can only do their best to read what might work with us. We scare me to death.

drc2
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Apr. 26, 2012 11:15 am

Perhaps those who continue to support the US use of torture, droning, assassinations etc. are akin to those who suffer battered wife syndrone. How different would the US and the world be today if the US had not facilitated the overthrow of Iran in 53'... that, and the numerous other "interventions" the US is resposible for. If the US were serious about combatting "terrorism"... it would probably be a good idea to stop creating them with every move they make....


Five Stages of Impunity for Torture

One hallmark of the administration of President Barack Obama has been the commitment of the administration to move forward and not look back—to, as a Democratic Party operative only concerned with election results might say, not re-litigate the eight years of the administration of George W. Bush. This means no accountability for those responsible for committing torture. It means no justice for torture victims.

Professor Alfred W. McCoy, author of Torture and Impunity: The U.S. Doctrine of Coercive Interrogation, was on “Democracy Now!” on Friday to talk about his book. Host Amy Goodman played a clip of President Obama in his first prime-time press conference giving a slick, calculated but somewhat banal comment on whether the administration would have a truth and reconciliation commission examine the past years of the Bush administration.

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: My administration is going to operate in a way that leaves no doubt that we do not torture, that we abide by the Geneva Conventions, and that we observe our traditions of rule of law and due process as we are vigorously going after terrorists that can do us harm. And I don’t think those are contradictory. I think they are potentially complementary. My view is also that nobody is above the law, and if there are clear instances of wrongdoing, that people should be prosecuted just like any ordinary citizen, but that, generally speaking, I’m more interested in looking forward than I am in looking backwards.

McCoy reacted to this clip saying what Obama said was an example of “the third stage of impunity.” He then went through the stages of impunity, a “universal process” that he argues “happens in countries emerging from authoritarianism that have had problems with torture.”

Step one, McCoy stated:

…is blame the bad apples. Donald Rumsfeld did that right after the Abu Ghraib scandal was exposed in 2004.

Step two is saying that it was necessary for our national security—unfortunate, perhaps, but necessary to keep us all safe. That was done very articulately by former Vice President Cheney at the time, and he continues to make that argument. He claims that these “enhanced techniques,” as he calls them, i.e. CIA torture, saved thousands, sometimes tens of thousands, sometimes hundreds of thousands of lives. OK?

The third step is the step we just witnessed in President Obama, saying that, well, whatever might have happened in the past, we need unity as a nation, we need to move forward together into the future. So, the past isn’t germane. We need to put it behind us, not investigate, not prosecute. And that was the position he was taking there.

In the fourth stage, those implicated in acts of torture seek not only exoneration for their crimes but also vindication. For example, former Bush administration officials argued “enhanced interrogation under the Bush administration led the Navy SEALs to Osama bin Laden,” despite there being no evidence for the claim. They created pressure on Attorney General Eric Holder to not investigate torture and drop investigations into torture, which appears to have worked.

“The fifth and final stage,” according to McCoy, is “rewriting the history, rewriting the past, ripping it apart, without respect to the truth of the matter, and reconstructing it in a way that justifies the torture.” Vice President Dick Cheney’s appearances on news television have frequently been utilized for this purpose—to make it seem as if torture was effective in getting suspected terrorists to talk so that plots could be disrupted.

Like the Party slogan in George Orwell’s 1984, “Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past,” The Party controls the records, which allows it to control all memories. That allows the Party to control the past.

This is but another vile aspect of President Barack Obama, his administration, the Democratic Party leadership’s fealty to the mantra of moving forward and not looking back now enshrined in the messaging of the Obama 2012 campaign with the simple word, “Forward.” It is but another despicable aspect of members of Congress, especially Democrats, and supporters of Obama and Democrats’ refusal to raise their voice to take issue with the administration’s inaction and active refusal to prosecute individuals for torture.

Without accountability or justice, those who were at the center of acts of torture may work to clear their name, as if they never committed any wrong. They are able to suggest that if what they had done was criminal, they would have been put on trial. They would have been charged with committing a crime, but there are no prosecutions so all the civil liberties and human rights advocates and the antiwar or peace activists may just be part of focus groups, which happen to be deluded.

No justice gives former officials license to argue there was no torture. No convictions gives former officials the conviction and brass to sit before a television camera, write a memoir or pen an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal and assert what they did was for Americans’ protection and it is wrong for them to be scrutinized or questioned.

This does a great disservice to the victims of torture, especially those still indefinitely imprisoned in Guantanamo; but it is the inevitable byproduct of the Obama administration’s complicity in allowing officials responsible for torture to walk free. To the extent that the Obama administration continues to subject prisoners to torture and outsource torture to allies in the “war on terrorism,” it is worse than complicity. It is a coverup—an act to conceal and ensure the national security state can continue to be purveyors of violence and torture against those the US contends it has a right to indefinitely hold in detention without charge or trial, without judicial or due process.

http://dissenter.firedoglake.com/2012/09/22/five-stages-of-impunity-for-...

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norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Don’t You Dare Conflate MLK and Obama

Had King survived, his break with Obama would have come early.”


If Dr. King were alive today, there might be a Black president, but he or she would certainly not get MLK’s support if he behaved like Barack Obama. Dr. King would oppose Obama’s wars, “make Wall Street scream, and attempt to render the nation ungovernable under the dictatorship of the Lords of Capital.”

Back in 1964, under prodding from a BBC interviewer, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. predicted that a Black person might be elected president “in 25 years or less.” Four years later, shortly before his assassination, King confided to actor/activist Harry Belafonte that he had “come to believe we're integrating into a burning house." We now see that the two notions are not at all contradictory. At least some African Americans have achieved deep penetration of the very pinnacles of white power structures – integrating the White House, itself – while conditions of life for masses of Black folks deteriorate and the society as a whole falls into deep decay.

The fires lit by the “giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism” that Dr. King identified in his 1967 “Beyond Vietnam: Breaking the Silence” speech are consuming the world, now stoked by a Black arsonist-in-chief. Domestic poverty hovers only a fraction of a percentage below the levels of 1965, with “extreme poverty” the highest on record. Black household wealth has collapsed to one-twentieth that of whites. Today, more Black men are under the control of the criminal justice system than were slaves in the decade before the Civil War, according to Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow.

The intervening years have shown that Dr. King’s 1960s visions were not in conflict: the rooms at the top floors of the national house may have been integrated, but the building still burns.

The deepening crisis of capitalism, the triumph of Wall Street finance over industrial capital, the increasing imperial reversion to international lawlessness in a desperate bid to maintain global supremacy – all this was predictable under the laws of political economy. Had the assassin’s bullet not found him, Dr. King would have continued his implacable resistance to these unfolding evils, rejecting Barack Obama’s invasions, drones and Kill Lists with the same moral fervor and political courage that he broke with Lyndon Johnson over the Vietnam War. Absolutely nothing in King’s life and work indicates otherwise.

The very notion of a grand austerity bargain with the Right would have been anathema to MLK.”

One school of thought holds that corporate servants like Obama could not have taken root in Black America if Dr. King, Malcolm X and a whole cadre of slain and imprisoned leaders of the Sixties had not been replaced by opportunistic representatives of a grasping Black acquisitive class. In any event, had King survived, his break with Obama would have come early. Surely, the Dr. King who, in his 1967 “Where Do We Go from Here” speech called for a guaranteed annual income would never have abided Obama’s targeting of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid in the weeks before his 2009 inauguration. Forty-five years ago, King’s position was clear: “Our emphasis must be twofold: We must create full employment, or we must create incomes.” The very notion of a grand austerity bargain with the Right would have been anathema to MLK.

Were Martin alive, he would skewer the putative leftists and their “lesser evil” rationales for backing the corporatist, warmongering Obama. As both a theologian and a “revolutionary democrat,” as Temple University’s Prof. Anthony Monteiro has described him, MLK had no problem calling evil by its name – and in explicate triplicate. His militant approach to non-violent direct action required him to confront the underlying contradictions of society through the methodical application of creative tension. He would make Wall Street scream, and attempt to render the nation ungovernable under the dictatorship of the Lords of Capital. And he would deliver a withering condemnation of the base corruption and self-serving that saturates the Black Misleadership Class.

He would spend his birthday preparing a massive, disruptive action at the Inauguration.

http://blackagendareport.com/content/don%E2%80%99t-you-dare-conflate-mlk-and-obama

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norske
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote Art:
Quote Zenzoe:

Yes, those people on the other side bear no resemblance to normal human beings with normal longings, normal wishes to live in peace and prosperity, and normal reactions to abnormal circumstances. They're evil through and through, and we'd damn sure better remember that, as we great humanitarians and lovers of peace destroy them, their families, the infrastructure where they live and dominate their existence— because we're the good guys and they're the bad guys, and that justifies whatever we decide to do to them.

Did you have anything to say about whether there should be a CIA? That's what we were discussing. It's a bit counter-productive to cherry-pick segments from one discussion to apply to other topics. It sort of messes up context.

It seems to me you've been going to a massive amount of trouble defending the use of drones and American imperialism throughout this thread. The thread is about the sickening actuality of Obama's drone attacks on civilians, in contrast to, and denial of, MLK's hoped-for vision of justice and peace. In support of your support for said sickness, you implied the non-humanity of "the enemy," as those who believe in war always do. I simply pointed that out, as well as pointing out the weak logic of your justification for CIA wrongdoing.

As far as I can tell, my contribution there was as valid as any other. Your dehumanization of the Other has true relevance to the purpose of this thread, as I see it. Such dehumanization is central to state terror, and it needs to be recognized.

I tend to want to back up to see the forest, rather than get lost in the trees. But that's just me. I figure if we can't get to root causes in these discussions, why have them at all?

Zenzoe
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
those who continue to support the US use of torture, droning, assassinations etc. are akin to those who suffer battered wife syndrone. How different would the US and the world be today if the US had not facilitated the overthrow of Iran in 53'... that, and the numerous other "interventions" the US is resposible for. If the US were serious about co
I'm disappointed. I thought we were getting a start in discussing our personal ideas with eachother. I hoped you would have some more ideas to bounce off me about whether there should be a CIA. Then we could move onto another idea of yours. Maybe one or two of mine. Oh well.

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Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Art: the subject of the CIA is a subset of the issue and a diversion from the main point of this thread. How about addressing the main issue, which is Obama's betrayal of MLK's vision, even as he exploits the symbolism of the man's legacy.

Zenzoe
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

I'm sorry, Zenzoe. I'm not really interested in having a discussion with Martin Luther King. I was hoping to have a discussion with Norske over an idea that he might have. He was the one to propose doing away with the CIA. Not me.

I suppose I could engage in a discussion of an idea that you might have. Is the quality of the character and humanity of the typical Al Qaeda terrorist an idea that you would like to discuss? That seemed to be the general tenor of your comment. How would you characterize the personality of the average Al Qaeda terrorist?

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Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote Art:

I'm sorry, Zenzoe. I'm not really interested in having a discussion with Martin Luther King. I was hoping to have a discussion with Norske over an idea that he might have. He was the one to propose doing away with the CIA. Not me.

Oh so sorry, Sir— I forgot! You're running this thread! I should remind myself it's a discussion between you and Norske alone, and I should mind my own business and stay out of it. Silly me, just because I never suggested you should have a discussion with MLK, but, instead, reminded you of the subject of this thread was the betrayal of MLK's vision by Obama's drone policy, that doesn't mean my comment should be taken seriously! After all, I'm just a woman, and this is a boy's club.

Is that how you are, Art? A person who has to control the direction of a discussion? You pick and choose what's to be discussed, and others be damned?

Quote Art:

I suppose I could engage in a discussion of an idea that you might have. Is the quality of the character and humanity of the typical Al Qaeda terrorist an idea that you would like to discuss? That seemed to be the general tenor of your comment. How would you characterize the personality of the average Al Qaeda terrorist?

I find your tone patronizing and offensive. Go be in charge of someone else. I posted a perfectly reasonable subject for this discussion, as in, "[the] dehumanization of the Other has true relevance to the purpose of this thread, as I see it. Such dehumanization is central to state terror, and it needs to be recognized." That is, the dehumanization of others as a requisite for drone warfare would be the subject, a reasonable offshoot of this discussion. How about addressing that subject? Your proposal of "the personality of the average al Qaeda terrorist" as my subject, in avoidance of the subject I presented quite clearly, offends for the insufferable condescension assumed by it, as if I am a child to be guided by the teacher.

But thanks for at least noticing that I exist. At least that's progress, I suppose.

Zenzoe
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
dehumanization of the Other has true relevance to the purpose of this thread, as I see it. Such dehumanization is central to state terror, and it needs to be recognized." That is, the dehumanization of others as a requisite for drone warfare would be the subj
Ah, then That's an idea that you have that you would like to discuss. Dehumanization. I thought I was getting something started with Norske about whether the CIA should be ablished, but alas, that didn't pan out. I can shift gears and move in a different direction. Dehumanization.

I think that the subject really strikes at the basic human psychology of war. Yes, I agree that it is a necessary part of going to war to come to a place where the person you are trying to kill does not share the smae psychological and emotional experiences as you do. We know that the Army has infantrymen and others using violent video games to train them toward thinking of the enemy as something less than a full human being and less able to identify with. It makes for a more effective fighting force.

On the other hand, the enemy often makes it easy to do this. I remember seeing a documentary on the "Rape of Nanking", just prior to our engagement with Japan in WWII. After a brief period of time conquering and occupying China's capital, which was Nanking at the time, the Japanese military left its soldiers basically unsupervised to hold their occupation. Boredom soon set in. It became a nightly past time to go out seeking some entertainment, which came in the form of 15 year old Chinese girls, who they gang-raped for fun. This appeared not to happen in isolated incidences, but was a common entertainment. The documentary was peppered with little mini-interviews with Japanese soldiers who had participated in these entertainments. There was not a hint of shame or embarrassment in their recollections. Personally, I feel fairly comfortable viewing those particular Japanese soldiers as somewhat sub-human.

Now, we know that the Japanese are rather famous for their Samurai culture of racial and class superiority, so taking this all in context, it was easy to feel outrage and contempt for the Japanese culture in general. Yet, with the conclusion of WWII people came to realize that these atrocities were not commmited by the Japanese people, but rather by a sub-culture of of the Japanese people. America has its Lt. Calleys, and it has those soldiers who wretched from what they saw when they entered Dachau and saw what the Nazis had done. This is probably one of the worst consequences of war. It breeds the worst of human behaviors. It 's wrong to characterize an entire nationality for the abuses of its least human members. But is it wrong to demonize those sub-populations who act out the worst characteristics that the culture has to offer?

Once again, it appears that you have an idea that you would like to discuss. Dehumanization. Is this something you would like to discuss? How would you characterize the personality of the average Al Qaeda terrorist?

PS. For the life of me, I don't understand how gender got into this.

After all, I'm just a woman, and this is a boy's club.
I'm just looking for discussion about peoples' ideas. I don't care about your gender. You'll do just as well as Norske - if you have any ideas of your own. This dehumanization thing seems like a good idea to discuss.

Art's picture
Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote Art:

...Once again, it appears that you have an idea that you would like to discuss. Dehumanization. Is this something you would like to discuss? How would you characterize the personality of the average Al Qaeda terrorist?

PS. For the life of me, I don't understand how gender got into this.

After all, I'm just a woman, and this is a boy's club.
I'm just looking for discussion about peoples' ideas. I don't care about your gender. You'll do just as well as Norske - if you have any ideas of your own. This dehumanization thing seems like a good idea to discuss.

You're still doing it, Art. I guess you don't realize when you're talking-down-to and underestimating people.

Anyone who knows me on this forum knows I have my own ideas. I don't need your encouragement for such. I'd be fascinated to know what makes you think you need to encourage me to think for myself. I do that regularly around here, so, cut the crap, okay?

Zenzoe
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Guess not. Oh well. (You really ought to get over yourself)

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Art
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote Art:

... (You really ought to get over yourself)

Clearly, you're looking in the mirror and talking to yourself.

Zenzoe
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Currently Chatting

The other way we're subsidizing Walmart...

Most of us know how taxpayers subsidize Walmart's low wages with billions of dollars in Medicaid, food stamps, and other financial assistance for workers. But, did you know that we're also subsidizing the retail giant by paying the cost of their environmental destruction.

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