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[Re: UN wants press banned from inspections]

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  • thekoba@aztec.asu.edu
    ================= Begin forwarded message ================= Dear Kevin, On the first day of the inspections there was that story of a mystery plane that
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 1 9:27 PM
      ================= Begin forwarded message =================

      Dear Kevin,

      On the first day of the inspections there was that
      story of a mystery plane that neither the UN nor the
      US claimed that flew over the area in which the
      inspectors were working. I couldn't help wondering if
      maybe the plane and some of the inspectors were in
      contact. Not about mass destruction weapons,
      obviously, but perhaps calibrating ranges or
      trajectories or the like for the impending US attack.

      If the plane were part of such a "black operation"
      it's quite possible that the military spokesmen
      wouldn't know about the flight and therefore would
      have been totally honest when they disavowed any
      knowledge of or responsibility for the plane.

      Much is done with electronic signals bounced off of
      this or that to something else, etc., too.

      Anyhow, if there are gangs of reporters around it
      would perhaps be a little harder for "inspector" spies
      to start contacting the "mother ship" -- at least not
      with elaborate and obvious equipment.

      Since the last bunch of spies claimed to have found an
      artillery shell with traces of some poisoned gas on
      it, and then an open container of the same gas was
      found in a fridge in their quarters after they were
      rushed out before the bombing in 1998, it seems
      obvious that they tried to plant "evidence." Their
      little trick didn't work because the sample turned up
      traces of gas only in one (US) test but not on the
      sample taken at the same spot by the French.

      Again, a bunch of reporters around would tend to
      reduce the possibility that "inspector" spies would be
      able to plant "evidence."

      But if one wants to believe the UN is angelic, one
      might also think that of the Pentagon when in the 1991
      war it restricted the flow of information to the US
      media so that reporters only got the sanitized, GI Joe
      version. That prevented a "media circus" on the
      battle field. It protected the reporters from the
      danger of being shot. And it prevented the public
      from being mislead by rumours stupidly passed on by
      naive reporters.

      Well, even as the western media focus on the latest
      field trip by the inspectors, four Iraqis were killed
      and 20 others injured when US/UK warplanes fired two
      rockets at the headquarters of the Iraq South Oil
      Company in al-Basrah in a crowded quarter of the city
      (the al-Khalij i.e., "Gulf" Quarter) at a time when
      600-700 people were in their offices there.

      Meanwhile Britain tomorrow is to circulate a second
      report on Iraq specifically about their "violations of
      human rights," as part of their building of the "case"
      for an attack. The British claim, you see, that if
      Iraq violates the human rights of Iraqis, that this is
      a violation of the UN resolutions. This according to
      a British government spokesman in Oman, one Mark
      Sidwell, who said that Foreign Minister Jack Straw
      would be circulating the report, though he admitted
      that the report would not be a legally binding
      document.

      Today's Washington Post reported that the cost of the
      war would be between $100 billion and $200 billion,
      but that if the Iraqis destroyed the oil fields the
      cost would rise higher, or if the war lasted for a
      couple years. This is more than the 1990-1991 war
      cost, and this would be paid mostly out of tax funds,
      unlike the last war which was to a large extent paid
      for by the Saudis and Kuwaytis and other US satellite
      regimes.

      Diplomats and analysts in Paris are reported by
      as-Safir in the 2 December 2002 edition as saying that
      the US and Iran have reached an agreement that
      American pilots who are struck by Iraqi anti-aircraft
      fire can cross the border into Iran. I should mention
      that as-Safir tends to be pro-Syrian and so is not
      inclined to be anti-Iranian.

      Well, that's pretty much the big news.

      I've had that pesky Trotskyite Carl Webb to deal with
      again. "What's wrong with my stories?" he pleads when
      I complain that all he ever posts are stories about
      Jews and "Israelis" who are allegedly anti-Zionist.
      One person in one of his stories says that 5 to 8
      percent of "Israelis" are anti-Zionist, and although I
      regard that as far too high, it still means that he's
      pushing stories about the good Jews when 92-95 percent
      of the "Israelis" are rampant Zionists.

      I said that the type of stories he sends indicates
      that he thinks that fighting anti-Semitism and not
      fighting Zionism is the real issue, but that this is
      wrong now.

      He has denied it but continues obtusely to ask what
      statement in his stories was wrong.

      Meanwhile, he brought a quote from Muhammad Rashid
      Rida that indicated he had a relatively positive
      attitude to socialism and yet continued to advocate
      Islamic law. Webb said that real Marxists are
      atheists and believe in separation of church from
      state. Of course nobody said that Muhammad Rashid
      Rida -- the inspirer of the Muslim Brothers -- was a
      Marxist. I put that translation of Rida's article out
      months ago to show that not all religious people were
      reactionary pro-capitalists -- as Lenni Brenner or
      Trotskyite Webb had claimed.

      But obviously they'd prefer to act stupid.

      I really think this might be the last time I waste
      effort on him.

      I found mention on the Democratic Korean website of a
      message of support coming from a Jordanian Communist
      Workers Party. I asked Ibrahim Alloush if that were
      Trotskyite. He said on the contrary that it was
      "Stalinist" (an expression he tends to use as a
      synonym for "dogmatist" unfortunately -- though he's
      often right). He went on to say that non-governmental
      organizations from the USA had bought the old
      Jordanian Communist Party and that the head of that
      party teaches in a Jordanian government university --
      a university that would never hear of employing
      Alloush (who works at a private institution). When
      the old CP accepted these funds, many of the members,
      including founding members, broke away and there was a
      court battle over who would be called the CP. The
      official bought-out party won the name, so the rebels
      had to come up with a new name and chose the Jordanian
      Communist Workers Party.

      They might be "dogmatist" and perhaps accept the
      existence of the Zionist entity (though I haven't yet
      asked Ibrahim about that) but at least they do have
      integrity, which is important.

      Comradely,

      Eric
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