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Institute
interpreting the constitution
one nation, under surveillance
Sports
spread of the red
News
spread of the red
number 157    
06.15.08
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The State Department has confirmed
that the US has withdrawn from the
United Nations Human Rights
Council, implementing a decision
made by Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice. The Bush
administration has been openly
critical of the 47-nation UNHRC since
its inception, and had only
maintained observer status at
Council proceedings. Diplomatic
personnel and human rights
advocates were shocked by the
announcement that the US was
totally disengaging itself from the
international forum.

State Department spokesman Sean
McCormack told reporters that Rice
had directed that the US would
participate in
the Council “only when we believe
that there are matters of deep
national interest before the council,
and we feel compelled.”  
Summarizing Bush administration
disapproval of the UNHRC,
McCormack said, “Instead of
focusing on some of the real and
deep human rights issues around the
world, it has really turned into a
forum that seems to be almost solely
focused on bashing Israel.” A voting
bloc comprising Russia, China, and a
number of smaller African and Asian
countries has effectively marginalized
US influence on the council.

“The message is worrying,” Human
Rights Watch program director
Sebastien Gillioz told the
Human
Rights
Tribune. “Ever since September
11, 2001, the US has constantly
interpreted international
standards in an “a la carte”
manner that has eroded human
rights.”

On the same day that the US
made public its withdrawal from
the UN panel, 56 members of
Congress signed a letter to
Attorney General Michael
Mukasey calling for a probe of the
administration on possible war
crimes charges in relation to the
torture of military detainees. The
letter seeks the appointment of a
special prosecutor to investigate  
"detainee interrogation polices
that constitute torture."         
it's all
true
Senior NBA referees and league
officials routinely intervene to
manipulate the results of games,
even in crucial playoff series,
according to documents filed in a
court case involving former
referee Tim Donaghy. The filing
asserts that executives and
referees conspired “to manipulate
games” in a bid to “boost ticket
sales and television ratings,”
notably in playoff series in 2002
and 2005. The officiating of the
games in both series was the
subject of intense criticism and
speculation even before Donaghy’
s accusations became public on
the eve of this
year’s NBA Finals.

NBA Commissioner Howard Stern
held a series of press
conferences before Finals games
last week to dismiss the charges
as “baseless” and to announce
that the league will reexamine the
officiating in the two series
identified as fixed by Donaghy.
Stern accused Donaghy of
fabricating the charges to cast a
pall over the Finals, and in an
attempt to negotiate a lighter
sentence for illegal gambling
charges to which the former
referee has pleaded guilty.          
it's all true
0       10      20      30       
40
us
Class size, 13 years old
selected countries
norway
spain
austria
The Bush administration is in the final
stages of negotiating a security pact
with the Iraqi government that will
assure an indefinite presence in Iraq
for the US military and private
Pentagon contractors. The White
House is also seeking broad
immunity from prosecution under
Iraqi law for the occupation forces,
civilian support staff, and military
contractors. The deal, expected to be
completed this summer, would
effectively undermine the ability of
the next US president to bring the
occupation to an end.

Under the terms of the secret
proposal, which were revealed by
investigative reporter Patrick
Cockburn in the British newspaper
the
Independent, American forces
would retain control of Iraqi airspace
below 29,000 feet and would
maintain more than 50 permanent
bases in the country. The
administration also wants US soldiers
to have the right to arrest Iraqi
citizens in pursuit of its global “war on
terror”.  According to the report,
these and other aspects of the pact
“are likely to have an explosive
political effect in Iraq.”

Since the details of the security pact
were leaked, opposition to the deal
among Iraqi citizens and political
leaders
has forced Prime Minister Nouri al-
Maliki to publicly condemn some of
the more objectionable US demands.
Claiming that talks had “reached an
impasse,” al-Maliki told reporters in
Baghdad this week, “The Iraqis will
not consent to an agreement that
infringes their sovereignty.”  But
Bush administration officials played
down the differences and predicted
that the accord would be signed with
limited modification. Traveling in
Europe, the president himself
remarked, “If I were a betting man,
we’ll reach an agreement with the
Iraqis. We’re there at their invitation.”

If the White House can deliver what it
considers a favorable deal by the
end of the summer, the Bush
administration will declare a military
victory in its five-year war in Iraq.
According to the
Independent, “The
timing of the agreement would also
boost the Republican candidate,
John McCain, who has claimed the
United States is on the verge of
victory in Iraq.”

Completion of a security pact is
crucial for the White House because
the UN mandate for US forces to be
in Iraq expires at the end of this year.
The new accord will provide a legal
basis for continuing the occupation.    
it's all true
United States Delegation in Human Rights
Negation
Bush Set to Saddle Successor With Cowboy
Policy
Truth Is Out,
Fix Was In
japan
verbatim                                                                number 30.5
...and is to constantly try
to embetter yourself and
get closer to the Lord.
And that's a daily
occurrence."
Washington DC  05.13.08
"Part of the faith walk is
to understand your
weaknesses...
The Stockholm International
Peace Research Institute
reported that global spending
on weaponry and other military
supplies has increased by 45
percent over the past ten
years.  

Worldwide military
expenditures increase by six
percent over last year with
total expenditures reaching
$1.339 trillion in 2007, or over
two hundred dollars for each of
the world’s 6.6 billion
inhabitants.

The Institute said there were
several reasons why military
spending has risen, citing
“countries’ foreign policy
objectives, real or perceived
threats (and) armed conflict,"
among other factors.

The authors reported that the
regions of North America, the
Middle East, South Asia, Africa
and East Asia saw increases in
military spending by 50
percent and more over the
past ten years, and military
spending in Eastern Europe
grew by 162 percent during
that time.

The study’s authors said that
in 2007, US military spending
accounted for 45 percent of
the world’s total spending,
$547 billion, which is higher
than any time since the
Second World War.
Researchers from the Institute
also studied the global arms
market focusing on the top 100
arms sellers, which sold $315
billion in weaponry in 2006.  
The authors found that 41 US
firms sold 63 percent of the
total weaponry sold by these
100 companies.           
it's all true
A study of Department of Homeland
Security ‘fusion centers’ found that in
general the centers “have not
consistently demonstrated their
value” because the threat of
terrorism that they were created to
respond to is actually insufficient to
“justify or sustain” the existence of
the centers, according to the
Federation of American Scientists.

The study of fusion centers in
California was performed by a
Sacramento Ca police officer, Milton
Nenneman, as part of a masters
study program.  Nenneman found,
“There is, more often than not,
insufficient purely ‘terrorist’ activity to
support a multi-jurisdictional and
multi-governmental level fusion
center that exclusively processes
terrorist activity.”  Due to the lack of
a terrorist threat in the US, fusion
centers have begun to play a role in
both local police work and
emergency planning, functions not
originally planned for when the
centers were set up using federal
funds appropriated by Congress in
response to the terror attacks in
2001.

DHS understands the need to
broaden the mission of fusion
centers and consults local police
forces on how to incorporate the data
swept up by fusion centers into their
daily operations.  The city of
Chicago, using a million dollar grant
from DHS has built a surveillance
substructure that incorporates over
600 sound recording cameras in
“high crime” areas and uses software
that “will predict exactly where the
next gang shooting is most likely to
occur, “ according to
govtech.com.  
A spokesperson for the Chicago
Police Department said, "This is
changing the way that Chicago police
investigate crimes.”          
it's all true
US interrogators at the detention
camp in Guantanamo Bay Cuba were
ordered to destroy any handwritten
notes that they may have made
about interrogation sessions they
participated in that would reveal the
harsh techniques used on
detainees.  The order came as part
of the Standard Operating Procedure
(SOP) for interrogations developed
by the Department of Defense.

The military’s written policy
anticipated challenges from
detainees who would raise as a
defense the fact that they were
tortured if they were ever tried in a
court.  The policy states, “this
mission has legal and political issues
that may lead to interrogators being
called to testify,” for this reason, the
policy continues, “keeping the
number of documents with
interrogation information to a
minimum can minimize certain legal
issues.”
Navy Lieutenant Commander Bill
Kuebler, who is an attorney for
Canadian citizen Omar Khadr, a
detainee held at the detention
center, said that the notes are crucial
to the defense of his client and would
reveal that US interrogators used
illegal methods as they questioned
his client and other detainees.  
Kuebler said in a statement released
to the press that the ordered
destruction of the notes amounted to
the destruction of evidence.

“If hand written notes were destroyed
in accordance with the SOP, the
government intentionally deprived
Omar’s lawyers of key evidence with
which to challenge the reliability” of
confessions obtained through so-
called enhanced interrogation
techniques that have been revealed
to include acts of torture.
Khadr, who is the youngest detainee
held at the US military detention
camp in Guantanamo Bay, was
apprehended when he was 15 in
2002 in Afghanistan.  He is
suspected of being tied to Al-
Qaeda and is charged with killing
a US soldier.  Khadr is scheduled
to appear before a military
tribunal in the near future and his
attorneys received a copy of the
SOP from military prosecutors last
week as pre-trial evidence.  

Kuebler said, “By destroying
handwritten notes containing
‘interrogation information’ and
preserving only the sanitized
summaries, interrogators
effectively destroyed evidence of
illegal treatment of detainees- as
well as evidence that could be
used to contradict the statements
recorded in the summaries.”       
it's all true
Evidence Destruction Standard Operating Procedure at
Gitmo
Rise in Invasions
Spurs Increase In
Arms Spending
Surveillance Centers Encourage Frightening
Fusion
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