"Angry Arab" As'ad AbuKhalil notes the curious Bush-Clinton notions of liberation and freedom in Iraq:
Giving foreign troops -- and foreign mercenaries -- the right to operate with complete immunity on your own native soil, arresting anyone they like, going anywhere they want, and conducting military operations against your people without your permission: sounds like a "precious gift" to us!
Today Hillary said that the US gave Iraq "the precious gift" of freedom. Here is an example [from the Washington Post]: "Iraq is resisting U.S. proposals for a pair of new bilateral security agreements, saying it expects Washington to compromise on "sensitive issues," including the right to imprison Iraqi citizens unilaterally, Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari said Monday. Other problematic areas now being negotiated, Zebari said in an interview, are provisions in U.S. drafts to give American contractors immunity from Iraqi law and allow the United States to conduct military operations without Iraqi government coordination. "These are the main ones, but there could be others," he said, among them "issues of sites, of locations, of access" by U.S. troops."
Afghan Lawmakers Push Cultural Bans of Taliban Era.
The Christian Science Monitor brings us this report of the freedom and liberation that the "good war" in Afghanistan has wrought. At a cost of billions of dollars -- and thousands of innocent lives -- George Bush's Global War of Terror has liberated Afghans from the extremist strictures of the Taliban, and freed them to enjoy, er, the extremist strictures of the Taliban:
If some Afghan lawmakers have their way, Taliban-era laws will once again reign over the country. Last week, a group of members of parliament (MPs) put forth draft legislation that would ban T-shirts, loud music, women and men mingling in public, billiards, video games, playing with pigeons, and more – all regulations from the notorious Taliban era.
The move is the most recent attempt by religious conservatives to restrict "un-Islamic influences." Many observers say it's the latest sign of growing Talibanization in Afghanistan.
The draft law comes a week after members of parliament voted to ban wildly popular Indian soap operas from airing on Afghan channels....In January, Afghan journalist Perwiz Kambakhsh was put on death row for downloading an article from the Internet that questioned women's roles in Islam...Late last year another prominent journalist, Ghaws Zalmai, was jailed for translating the Koran into the local Persian language.
..."We have the same ideas as the Taliban," says parliamentarian Qazi Naseer Ahmad, who is not part of the group that proposed this latest law. "We want sharia [Islamic] law in our country. Women must ask permission from their husbands before they leave the home, and they must not wear clothes that are against Islam." Referring to the Indian television programs, Mr. Ahmad continues, "If children watch these serials, maybe they will forget the Islamic laws."
Even the American's hand-picked president, Hamid Karzai, is joining in:
"These television programs," Mr. Karzai recently told reporters, referring to the banned Indian serials, "contradict the daily life of Afghans and ... must be stopped."
Annals of Security:
Detainees Allege Being Drugged, Questioned (Washington Post):
At least two dozen other former and current detainees at Guantanamo Bay and elsewhere say they were given drugs against their will or witnessed other inmates being drugged, based on interviews and court documents.....
Yet the allegations have resurfaced because of the release this month of a 2003 Justice Department memo that explicitly condoned the use of drugs on detainees.
Written to provide legal justification for interrogation practices, the memo by then-Justice Department lawyer John C. Yoo rejected a decades-old U.S. ban on the use of "mind-altering substances" on prisoners. Instead, he argued that drugs could be used as long as they did not inflict permanent or "profound" psychological damage. U.S. law "does not preclude any and all use of drugs," Yoo wrote in the memo....
Scott Allen, a physician and co-director of the Center for Prisoner Health and Human Rights in Providence, R.I, noted that there are no accepted medical standards for the use of drugs to subjugate prisoners. Thus, any such use in interrogations "would have to be considered an experimental use of medicine."
Terror War captives injected with drugs as part of medical "experiments" to coerce false confessions? Mengele! Thou should'st be living at this hour! America hath need of thee!
This column is republished here with the permission of the author.
Republication or redistribution of Baltimore Chronicle content is expressly prohibited without their prior written consent.
Baltimore News Network, Inc., sponsor of this web site, is a nonprofit organization and does not make political endorsements. The opinions expressed in stories posted on this web site are the authors' own.
This story was published on April 23, 2008.