By Sajjad Shaukat
On the onset, let me correct it that there are no Taliban in Pakistan, all that we are facing are criminals and terrorists pushed in here by Indo-Israeli network operating in Afghanistan. The western media who are under Zionist control have labeled them as Taliban only to defame this name that we use for students. It is highly objectionable to brand the criminals as Taliban. If this be the case then every student would be taken to be a terrorist then where would we educate our children and what would we call them? But for the sake of this paper I will refer them to as Taliban though they are not.
Pakistan has made numerous protests to the US and NATO command in Afghanistan to reign them in but to no avail.
The recent floods in Pakistan have provided a new level of devastation, especially in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa where more than 4 million people have been affected by this natural disaster. The emerging landscape in areas where the water has receded is one in which bridges, roads, schools, health clinics, power facilities and sewage systems have been ruined or seriously damaged.
While Pakistan’s high officials and foreign media said that overall impact of the floods now exceeds that of the 2005 Kashmir earthquake, but at the same time some foreign media has started a propaganda campaign that by availing the opportunity, the Taliban can again return and organise themselves. They are likely to get the sympathies of the flood-affected people.
In this connection, under the caption, ‘Flooding’s devastation in Pakistan is seen as opportunity for Taliban’, The Washington Post reported on August 9, 2010: “The slow-motion disaster underway in Pakistan as floodwaters seep into virtually every corner of the nation has devastated basic infrastructure and could open the door to a Taliban resurgence.”
The Post further elaborated, “Over the past year, Pakistan’s army has succeeded in driving Taliban fighters
out of key
sanctuaries in South Waziristan and the Swat Valley. But the damage from the floods could jeopardize those gains, unless infrastructure is quickly rebuilt—an undertaking that will cost billions of dollars and will probably take years.”
However, it is misperception of The Washington Post including other western media as the fact of the matter is that the flood in Pakistan cannot lead to the Taliban resurgence. In this context, army officials are of the opinion that they are aware that the Taliban could try to seize the opportunity but they will not let that happen. Brig. Gen. Tippu Karim, who is overseeing relief efforts for Swat and other northwestern areas made it clear saying: “We have not let down our guard. The safeguards are still in place… reconstruction will be the top priority as soon as Pakistan can get past the immediate challenge of rescuing stranded residents and providing them with food and shelter.”
These floods have diminished the propaganda of the west and the militants against Pakistan, because Pakistan’s armed forces which are helping the flood victims round the clock and have visited various camps—focusing on evacuating people from flood affected areas, distributing food, water, medicine and conveying dead bodies. The relief efforts particularly addressed the Northern Areas, evacuating hundreds of stranded people every day. In this respect, Pak Army has been performing excellent services in the flood-affected areas, which include more water bottles, ready-to-eat meals and cartons of dry rations and boats. Apart from army, Pakistan Air Force helicopters besides evacuation and distribution also delivered medical staff and medicine. PAF has continued the relief operations in the flood affected areas of the country. The entire C-130 fleet along with helicopters is engaged in flood relief operations.
Pakistani navy boats spread across miles of flood waters as the military took a lead role in rescuing survivors from a devastating disaster
It is mentionable that the Pakistan military which had played a dominant role during natural disasters such as in the earthquake of 2005 has come to the fore during the present floods.
It is notable that our army which has already broken the backbone of the Taliban in Buner, Swat, Dir, South Waziristan and other tribal agencies through successful military operations is now busy in fighting Taliban insurgents in some areas. Despite its engagement in a different war, Pak Army has been performing a remarkable job in the regions which have been affected by the floods.
The women and men from troubled areas have highly appreciated all Pakistan’s armed forces, saying that they are saving them. Besides, various leaders of the civil society, political parties and media of our country including the general masses have also immensely praised the positive role of Pak Army in connection with the areas affected by the floods.
Islamic charities including ones that are known fronts for banned militant groups have also begun distributing assistance in some areas, as have western nongovernmental organizations. But for the most part, residents said they are receiving no aid at all from these entities.
It is of particular attention that more than 10 million people have been affected by the present floods. And billions of dollars are needed to rehabilitate the homeless people, reconstruction of roads, bridges, schools, hospitals and other infrastructure, while being a developing country, Pakistan government lacks resources in this regard. This fact has also been realized by the United Nations Organisation which recently revealed that destruction caused by the floods in Pakistan is more than that of the tsunami.
There is no doubt that although some countries, particularly the United States have provided aid to Pakistan in relation to the flood-affected areas, yet it is not enough and they have only fulfilled formality in this respect. For example, the US military has sent six helicopters, 91 troops and hundreds of thousands of meals from neighboring Afghanistan to help with relief efforts in Swat. In fact, each district which was cut off from the others, where the communications networks were jammed and where local roads were destroyed needs much help. Thousands of displaced villagers are still waiting for aid.
As regards the resurgence of the Taliban, the current army leadership is very clear that there is a war that needs to be waged. If Pakistan’s armed forces leave the flood victims to their fate and if the only saviors for them are charity funds of terrorist organisations then there could be chances of Talibans’ return. And sooner than later, these organisations can start recruiting some of them into their ranks. But quick action by our defence forces has diminished the prospects of Talibans’ resurgence. Besides, people of the affected areas know very well that criminal activities of the Taliban militants such as kidnappings, beheadings, car-snatchings etc. had made life miserable. They wanted to impose their own self-style system of Shariah which was quite opposite to the real Islamic values. Hence, people have no sympathy for the Taliban and they do not favour return of these militants.
Now the right hour has come that setting asides politics and without waiting for foreign aid—by recognising the scale of disaster and suffering which is so huge, we must donate and help the flood victims.
Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations
DR. MUSTAFA BARGHOUTI, SECRETARY GENERAL, PALESTINIAN NATIONAL INITIATIVE: I think it’s my duty to present to you the reality of the situation in Palestine, because I believe you have the right to know the truth. It is especially important to do that, given the fact that, unfortunately, most of the media outlets do not present to you the reality as they should, and in many cases, as I found in my work, most of the Western media is definitely influenced by a certain narrative, usually the Israeli narrative, when describing the situation. So, of course, when I present that to you, you’re not going to see that I’m neutral.
I’m not neutral, and I don’t claim that. I am a Palestinian who’s defending [the] Palestinian cause, but who is defending justice in the region for everybody. But I will try to be as objective as I could. But presenting the truth, and the reality, too, is very important, because as once a great writer and feminist said, Virginia Woolf, she said nothing has happened till it’s been described. And there are big parts of our history that were lost because they were not described, and we’ve promised ourselves that we will not let this happen to us again.
I will try to explain to you the situation not because—you will notice in my talk I’m not going to talk about the Palestinian rights from the perspective of nationalism, because this is not my goal. As a matter of fact, I think even if I wasn’t a Palestinian, if I was born somebody else, Canadian, maybe, or anybody else, and knew the situation, I would be doing exactly what I’m going to do today, because this is an issue of justice that concerns not only Palestinians or Arabs or Christians or Muslims; it concerns all humanity.
That’s how I see it. The second thing I will do is to try to explain to you this rise of a very powerful movement of nonviolence in Palestine and why the rise of this movement is so important, why it is promising, but why also it is so important that it is supported by strong international solidarity movement to guarantee its success. And then maybe I will try to explain what you can do to help in this situation. But let us first start with the situation.
It is important to mention that the whole idea of two-state solution is not new. It’s something that goes back to 1947.
Originally, the Palestinians—before most of them got dispossessed in 1948 by the Israeli troops, Palestinians opted and wanted to have one democratic state in Palestine with everybody living together, side by side, with equal rights and equal duties.
The world community pushed for another kind of solution, which is two states, and in 1947 the United Nations decided on the so-called partition plan, which would allocate 55 percent of the land of historic Palestine to Israelis, to Israel, and 45 percent to Palestinians. At that time, Palestinians represented 70 percent of the population of Palestine and owned more than 90 percent of the land. Yet Israel was established not on 55 percent but rather on 78 percent.
What remained was only the West Bank and Gaza Strip, which is only 22 percent of the historic Palestine, and this area was occupied by Israel in 1967. In 1988, the PLO, being the representative of the Palestinians, decided to accept a very painful compromise, and that compromise was that they would agree with a two-state solution, where Palestinian state would be established in the West Bank and Gaza Strip only. That means Palestinians accepted to have a state in less than half of what they should have had, according to the same United Nations resolution which gave Israel its legitimacy.
And many Palestinians thought this would lead to peace. That was the basis of Oslo Agreement. And to the great surprise of the Palestinian negotiators, when they went to Camp David in 1999, this was the map offered to them by the Israelis, where the state would be without Jerusalem, without borders, without many areas in the West Bank that include many of the settlements, and most important, without most of the water resources in the West Bank. And as if this was not enough, Prime Minister Sharon, at the time, of Israel, and then later Netanyahu, came up with this plan, which is to take away even more parts of the West Bank, specifically the whole area of the Jordan Valley, and to transform the concept of statehood into nothing but clusters of ghettos or bantustans.
So it is important to recognize how the whole idea of statehood over years was reduced gradually from 45 percent to 22 percent, which Palestinians accepted, down to 18 percent, and then later to less than 11 percent in fragmented territories. Did this happen by accident? No. It happened according to a plan. And that plan was developed back in 1967, when the Israeli foreign minister at the time, Yigal Allon, decided to develop this plan, which was adopted by the Israeli establishment, to deal with a problem that the Israelis faced when they occupied us in ’67.
That problem was we did not leave as they expected. The people decided to learn from the experience of ’48. And although their life was at risk, their decision was: we will stay even if we will be killed. And that created the so-called demographic problem for Israel, because they didn’t expect to occupy the West Bank and Gaza and find all these people. So the Yigal Allon plan was about how to contain the so-called demographic factor, and the Allon plan was was about building settlements around Jerusalem in the Jordan Valley, and then up in the north and in the south, to enclave Palestinian cities and villages into these clusters of ghettos or bantustans. And that’s exactly what happened. This is how the West Bank looked like back in 1967. All the yellow spots you see on the map are Palestinian communities—villages, towns, or refugee camps.
There wasn’t a single Jewish colony or settlement. First they built settlements—all these red spots. Then they created a series of checkpoints. (I put on the map only half of the military checkpoints, which amount to 630 today, because if I put all the checkpoints on the map, you will see a completely black map.) Then came the wall. The wall was nothing but another factor in a matrix which was designed to appropriate as much land as possible. The wall, contrary to what many people think, is not a wall on the borders between West Bank and Israel. It is not separating Israelis from Palestinians. It is a wall that, in 85 percent of the time, is built inside the occupied Territories, and in most of the time it is separating Palestinians from Palestinians.
They claim that the wall was built for security reasons. This is not true. This map shows you the so-called Oslo map. On this map you can see in these dark brown spots the areas that were given to the Palestinian Authority to control. Now, of course, Israel has taken back everything they gave, because there isn’t any security (complete control of the Palestinian Authority) anywhere. But during the implementation of Oslo—it started in ’94—contrary to what Oslo agreement said, Israel did not redeploy from 90 percent of the West Bank as it should have, but redeployed only [inaudible] these dark spots, and allowed the Palestinian Authority to have some kind of functional authority in the yellow areas, like collecting garbage or controlling the sewage systems, where they existed. But the rest of the white area, this whole white area, which is called Area C, more than 60 percent of the West Bank was maintained under Israeli complete control.
That means that if I have a land in Area C, I will not be allowed—. That was a deterioration, by the way, from before Oslo, because after Oslo, if I had to plant a tree in many of the pieces of the land in the Area C, even if I own the land, I would need a permit from the Israeli military. Nobody could build a house, put a water pipe, or build a school without Israeli permits. The only map that looks like this in modern history was this map, the map of the bantustans in the South African apartheid system. Then in some bantustans you have governments.
In one of them you had even a king. But that meant nothing, because all these governments were under the control of the apartheid regime, as much as today the Palestinian Authority, whether in West Bank or Gaza, is also under the Israeli occupation. During 63 years of what has become the longest occupation in modern history, and after 62 years of dispossessing more than half of the Palestinian people, who became now more than 5.5 million refugees spread all over the world—including some of those who are living here in Canada—during this period of time, Israel has developed a system of apartheid. I know that for some Israelis it is a harsh word. I know some people find it difficult to use this word.
And I invite you wholeheartedly to give me another expression, if you can, to describe this situation today where Israel controls more than 85 percent of our water in the West Bank and allows Palestinians to use no more than 50 cubic meters of water per capita per year, while it allows Israeli settlers to use 2,400 cubic meters per year, 48 times more than us. How would you describe a situation when Israelis make on average a GDP of $26,000 per year, while Palestinians make only $1,000, but we are obliged to buy products at Israeli market price because of an imposed tax [inaudible]?
We even have to pay double the price that Israelis pay for water and double the price that they pay for electricity. What is even worse is the fact that most of our main roads in the West Bank, after 42 years of occupation, have been confiscated and have become segregated, and they are exclusive for Israeli people, soldiers, or illegal settlers, while Palestinians who dare to go and drive on them and walk on them could be sentenced, according to the most recent military order, could be put in jail for 7 years. Segregation of roads did not exist even during the time of Jim Crow laws in the United States. They did not exist even during the worst time of apartheid in South Africa. This is the wall. In the Canadian press, you frequently come across a description of the wall as a “fence”. Sometimes they call it a “barrier”. A fence is nothing harmful.
We all know that. But this fence is 8 to 9 meters high. It’s going to be 850 kilometers in length. It would be three times the length and twice as high as Berlin wall used to be, the same Berlin wall which was heavily criticized for decades as an awful structure, and which the humanity celebrated the 20th anniversary of its downfall last November. A wall that is depriving people from freedom of movement. A wall that is destroying today our economy, destroying our health system, destroying our ability to get proper education. This is a woman standing on the roof of her two-floor building in Bethlehem. Her house is surrounded by the wall from all directions.
I visited her recently, and she told me she cannot go to the roof of her own house anymore, because the Israeli army told her she needs a military permit to go to the roof of her own house. And when she asked why, they told her, because your presence could be a threat to the wall. This is the main road between Jerusalem and Ramallah. I am a medical doctor by education. I practiced medicine for 15 years in Jerusalem. I was born in Jerusalem. But since five years, I’m forbidden, like most Palestinians, from entering Jerusalem even with a permit. The situation in Jerusalem is horrifying. It’s a situation where serious discrimination exists.
If a man or a woman who has Jerusalem ID tries to get married to another spouse from the West Bank, let’s say, he or she will not be able to grant the husband or the wife the citizenship of Jerusalem, which means the husband or the wife cannot come to live in Jerusalem. And if the person who is from Jerusalem goes to live with his wife in the West Bank, he will lose citizenship in Jerusalem. We know of a case recently when a husband and a wife were trying to solve their problem, and they were presented to a judge, an Israeli judge.
All the thing that the judge cared about [sic] was how the husband and the wife were not living together and yet they managed to have three children. What is apartheid? Apartheid is a system when you have two different sets of laws for two different people living in the same area. Any Jewish immigrant from Brooklyn or Siberia would be granted immediately the citizenship in the airport when he arrives to Israel, and that person could live not only in Jerusalem but anywhere in any of the illegal settlements in the West Bank without losing the citizenship.
If this is not apartheid, then what is apartheid? This road to Jerusalem does not exist anymore. It is already separated by this wall that is dividing Palestinians from Palestinians. On the right side of this photo, you see a man who is a Palestinian, and on the left side you see a woman who’s also Palestinian.
I once watched a very good movie. I’m sure many of you have seen it. It’s called The Pianist. And I was touched by that movie. That movie shows the suffering of the Jewish people during the time of the Holocaust and during the time of the Second World War. And I happen to be informed about that suffering, whether in the Holocaust or in other times, and nothing from what I’m telling you today negates, denies, or undermines the suffering of the Jewish people, whether in the Holocaust or during pogroms of Russia or during the Inquisition time or in other times. Nothing is denying that. But that suffering of the people during the Holocaust does not by any means justify the suffering of the Palestinian people today, because, first of all, we were not responsible for the suffering of the Jewish people. We were not part of it. As a matter of fact, Palestine was one of the safe havens where Jews and Jewish people lived side by side with Christian and Muslim Palestinians, in harmony, before the rise of the Zionist movement.
And I am sure—I tend to think—sometimes I dream about this and think, if those who suffered during the Holocaust and died would come back to life, I am sure they will be today supportive of the Palestinian rights, because they would not accept injustice that they were also subjected to. That’s why when I was watching the movie The Pianist, I could not stop myself from thinking about Qalqilyah, a city with 46,000 people located in the north of the West Bank. You see an air photo in the slides here which shows you the city surrounded by a huge white structure from all directions. It’s the wall, which is enclaving the city, leaving only one little passage, a small road that is 8 meters width, which has a gate, and the gate has a key, and the Israeli soldiers hold the key, and they can shut off the city any time they want. This is how it looks from the air. You can see the wall surrounding the city. And on the left side you can see a highway [inaudible] which was also built on the land of Qalqilyah. But this road is exclusive for Israelis.
The people of Qalqilyah would not be allowed to reach that road, as much as they would not be allowed to reach the land of their farms around the city. The only thing that changed in this picture is that recently the Israeli side has painted the wall and planted trees so that the drivers on the highway would not be hurt by the image of this terrible wall. Nobody, of course, thought of what’s happening on the other side. And today, tens of thousands of people are enclaves in clusters behind the wall, between the wall and the borders with Israel. They cannot go west and they cannot go east. They cannot go to schools or universities, or to hospitals. If they want to cross, they need permits, which have to be renewed every one or two or three months. But even if they have military permits to cross, they can cross only according to the schedule that is established here by the Israeli army, which says people can cross only between 7:40 in the morning and 8:00, from 2:00 to 2:15 p.m., and 6:45 to 7:00 p.m.—50 minutes a day.
You can imagine what happens to a woman in labor if she has to give birth—and you know that labor doesn’t come to women according to a schedule. You can imagine what happened to some people who had heart attacks and suffered for hours before they were allowed to cross the gate. As a matter of fact, 80 women, 80 Palestinian women, had the great unpleasant experience of having to give birth in front of soldiers at checkpoints or in front of the gates. And they lost—one-third of them lost their babies. Nothing in the world can justify this image, when children have to line behind the gates and wait for the Israeli soldiers to cross. I know that recently here in Canada and in some other places there is a lot of talk about anti-Semitism, and anybody that dares to criticize the Israeli policy would automatically be accused of anti-Semitism. Well, let me tell you that the way I see it in this picture, what I see here is also anti-Semitism, where an Israeli soldier is practicing anti-Semitism against Palestinian children, who are Semites, too. In this picture you see, in the upper part, a farm. In the lower part you see what remained of the farm after the wall was built in the village of Falamiya. This used to be a market in another village called Nazlat ‘Isa. This, what remained of the market after the wall was built. This is a house that was cut into two pieces so that the wall would be built. And this is how close the wall is to people’s houses. This is how a settlement looks like. And this is how a Palestinian village looks like near that settlement.
This is how it looks when people cross the checkpoints. They could be delayed for hours. But maybe one of the worst suffering is happening today in Gaza. The Israeli government claims that it has left Gaza, but the reality is that it is still controlling all the passages to Gaza, controls the water around Gaza (and that’s why any fisherman who dares to cross more than 5 miles into the sea would be shot at), and controls the airspace, as well. This little, tiny sector, which is only 360 square kilometers, with 1.5 million people living in it, has been put under terrible embargo and siege for the last 3 years. And last year the Israeli army used all its arsenal to attack that little sector. Sixty F-16 jet fighters were used to attack the Gaza area, and within three minutes they killed 240 people. The total outcome was 1,440 deaths among Palestinians, mostly civilians, including 412 children. Five thousand three hundred were injured, including 1,855 children. Had we have the population of the United States [sic], we would be talking about approximately 250,000 people killed and around 1 million people injured within a period of three weeks. Twenty-five thousand houses have been demolished partially or completely. The world community met in Sharm el-Sheikh and pledged hundreds of millions of dollars to rebuild the houses. After a year and a half, not a single house or school or hospital has been rebuilt, because Israel has not allowed a single sack of cement or piece of glass to enter Gaza, and the whole international community is incapable of convincing Israel to allow construction material to reach Gaza. In our research we did recently, we found out that 90 percent of the people who had to leave their homes during the attacks went back, and they are now living in these destroyed houses because they have no other place to go to. But one of the most painful things to me was the fact that when the Israeli army was leaving the inside of Gaza area, they destroyed, on their way out, 352 remaining factories for no reason whatsoever. All these images are images of factories that were destroyed completely.
SPECIAL REPORT. Obama and Emanuel: members of same gay bath house club in Chicago
By Wayne Madsen
President Obama and his chief of staff Rahm Emanuel are lifetime members of the same gay bath house in uptown Chicago, according to informed sources in Chicago’s gay community, as well as veteran political sources in the city.
The bath house, Man’s Country, caters to older white men and it has been in business for some 30 years and is known as one of uptown Chicago’s “grand old bathhouses.” WMR was told by sources who are familiar with the bath house that it provides one-year “lifetime” memberships to paying customers and that the club’s computerized files and pre-computer paper files, include membership information for both Obama and Emanuel. The data is as anonymized as possible for confidentiality purposes. However, sources close to “Man’s Country” believe the U.S. Secret Service has purged the computer and filing cabinet files of the membership data on Obama and Emanuel.
Members of Man’s Country are also issued club identification cards. WMR learned that Obama and Emanuel possessed the ID cards, which were required for entry.
Obama began frequenting Man’s Country in the mid-1990s, during the time he transitioned from a lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School to his election as an Illinois State Senator in 1996. Emanuel, reportedly joined Man’s Country after he left the Clinton White Hosue and moved back to Chicago in 1998, joining the investment firm of Wasserstein Perella and maintaining his membership during his 2002 campaign for the U.S. 5th District House seat vacated by Rod Blagojevich, who was elected governor.
Man’s Country appears to be a “one stop shopping” center for gay men. The club’s website advertises steam rooms, “fantasy rooms,” bed rooms, male strippers, adult movies, and lockers.
However, Man’s Country was not the only location for Obama’s predatory gay sex activities. The Chicago gay community is aware that Obama often made contacts with younger men at his famous “pick-up basketball” games. It was at these “pick up” matches where Obama first met Emanuel and a young Democratic campaign worker and senior bank vice president named Alexi Giannoulias. Currently running for Obama’s old U.S. Senate seat now occupied by Roland Burris, Giannoulias successfully ran for Illinois Treasurer in 2006 after being drafted for the run by Chicago’s Democratic machine.
The Blagojevich trial: “Sex, Lies, and Audio tapes” — Fitzgerald’s US Attorney’s Office part of White House cover-up of gay sex in the Second City
Giannoulias was a vice president and senior loan officer for his father’s bank, Broadway Bank, from 2002 to 2006. Broadway Bank made real estate loans to Antoin “Tony” Rezko, the chief of Rezmar Corporation. On May 13, 2008, Rezko was found guilty, after being indicted by a grand jury at the behest of the U.S. Attorney for Northern Illinois Patrick J. Fitzgerald, of six counts of wire fraud, six counts of mail fraud, two counts of corrupt solicitation, and two counts of money laundering. Rezko has been in solitary confinement at the Metropolitan Detention Center at Van Buren and Clark in Chicago since June 2008. However, Rezko has not yet been officially sentenced to a federal prison. A Syrian-American, Rezko is considered to be a flight risk, even though his one-time fortune of $50 million has been reduced to zero.
One Republican politician in Chicago told WMR that Rezko will be a prime witness for Blagojevich’s defense. “Figure it this way, Rezko’s been in solitary confinement in the city jail since June 0f 2008 . . . if he is released to appear at Blagojevich’s trial as the primary witness, everyone expects him to squeal like a pig,” said the Republican politico.
In 2005, Rezko reportedly engaged in a complicated real estate “flip” through which his wife Rita and Obama agreed to split an empty lot adjoining a home that Obama bought in Chicago’s Kenwood district. The deal saw Obama buy the home for $1.65 million, which was $300,00 below market value. Obama then bought a strip of the adjoining property from Mrs. Rezko, a speculative deal that stood to make Obama a handsome profit. Since Rezko’s conviction, the property has has reportedly gone into bankruptcy. Giannoulias’s Broadway Bank was seized by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation on April 23, 2010, reportedly as Secretary of Treasury Tim Geithner was on his way to Chicago to present the bank with a bailout check. Geithner quickly changed his plans.
Giannoulias, Broadway’s then-senior loan officer, has denied being involved in the decision to loan money to Rezko.
Blagojevich’s trial judge, U.S. District Court judge James Zagel, a crony of former Illinois Republican Governor Jim Thompson, ruled that all 500 hours of phone calls intercepted and taped by Fitzgerald could not be played during Blagojevich’s trial as demanded by Blagojevich and his defense lawyers. Blagojevich demanded that Fitzgerald “show up in court and explain to everybody . . . why you don’t want those tapes that you made played in court.”
WMR has learned that the tapes may contain salty references Obama’s and Emanuel’s private lives.
WMR attempted to interview Blagojevich’s senior defense lawyer Sam Adam to no avail but other informed sources told us that the tapes, if played, would highlight the corruption of not only Obama, Emanuel, and other member of Obama’s Chicago “brain trust” but also Fitzgerald himself. WMR was told that Fitzgerald’s tactics have included providing sex and drugs to imprisoned felons to get them to provide perjured testimony at federal trials.
It is exactly the type of federal prosecutorial misconduct by Fitzgerald that former Republican Governor said was used by state prosecutors when he commuted the death sentences of Illinois’s death row population. Ryan was indicted by Fitzgerald for fraud and he is currently serving out a federal prison sentence.
Blagojevich’s trial was scheduled to begin on June 3 and Fitzgerald’s main interest was to keep the trial focused on Blagojevich, especially after he managed to “flip” Blagojevich’s former chief of staff John Harris to testify against the impeached and ousted governor. WMR learned from informed sources that one lawyer on Harris’s defense team is involved in a gay partner scandal that was discovered by the attorney’s wife.
Some of the wiretaps may reveal that it was not Valerie Jarrett, Obama’s longtime friend and current White House policy adviser who was Obama’s top candidate to fill his U.S. Senate seat, but the young 32-year old “pick up basketball” friend of Obama, Giannoulias, then serving his second year as state Treasurer. However, Obama had avoided campaigning for Giannoulias in Illinois and there were initial indications that the president had “thrown Giannoulias under the bus,” according to some Democratic political circles in Chicago. However, Obama has since had a change of heart and began to campaign for him.
Mutiple Chicago sources report that Republicans who see Giannoulias’s Obama connections as providing an edge in his Senate race this year should not celebrate prematurely. Giannoulias’s GOP opponent, U.S. Representative Mark Kirk, a Naval Reserve intelligence officer, has also been identified as a closeted gay man. Kirk divorced his wife last year after an eight-year marriage. They had no children.
In addition, U.S. Representative Aaron Shock, who took over the House seat vacated by Obama’s Republican Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, is, according to Chicago Boy’s Town sources, a habitué of Minibar, a noted gay bar in Chicago’s gay district. For an extremely young first term member of the House, observers were surprised when GOP Minority Whip Eric Cantor of Virginia named Shock as a Deputy Minority Whip.
Man’s Country, one of Chicago’s “grand old bathhouses” and located at 5015 North Clark Street in Chicago’s “Boystown,” was a frequent hangout for State Senator Obama and Rahm Emanuel
Sources in Chicago’s gay community report that Obama was attracted to Man’s Country’s older white clientele because he generally enjoys being fellated by older white men. Obama would regularly be seen at Man’s Country on Wednesdays.
Obama reportedly has never engaged in reciprocal activity. The sources also confirm the allegations made during the 2008 campaign by Larry Sinclair, a Chicago visitor who revealed that in 1999 he engaged in such oral sex activity and crack cocaine use with then-State senator Obama on two occasions, once in the back of a Chicago limousine operated by Five Star Limousine Service, and the other at a Chicago area motel, the Comfort Suites in Gurnee, Illinois.
After revealing details of the encounter at a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, Sinclair was arrested by Washington Metropolitan Police on a fugitive warrant issued by Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, the son of Obama’s vice presidential running mate, Senator Joe Biden. Sinclair was charged with a misdemeanor count of theft of money orders, however, the state of Delaware declined prosecution. Beau Biden later declined to run for his father’s old Senate seat because of his duties to prosecute a major pedophilia case involving Lewes, Delaware pediatrician Dr. Earl Bradley. There are reports that Biden’s office helped to cover up Bradley’s activities, including failing to authorize search warants for Bradley’s office and computer.
Chicago’s “DLC” — not the Democratic Leadership Council but the “Down Low Club” — a gay matchmaking service
WMR spoke to several well-placed sources in Chicago who reported that Jeremiah Wright, the pastor of Obama’s former church of 20 years, Trinity United Church of Christ (TUCC) on Chicago’s south side, ran what was essentially a matchmaking service for gay married black professional members of the church, including lawyers and businessmen, particularly those with children. The matchmaking club was called the “Down Low Club” but references to it over the phone and email simply referred to the group with the code phrase “DLC.” The ruse, according to our sources, was to make anyone who was eavesdropping on the communications believe that the references were to the Democratic Leadership Council, also known as the DLC.
The gay DLC’s services were intended to keep ensure TUCC’s gay members avoided posting solicitations on web services like Craig’s List and refrain from cruising gay bars. The strategy was to protect them from getting busted and being “outed.”
Among the members of the gay “DLC” were Obama and TUCC’s choir director, Donald Young, an openly gay man who reportedly had a sexual relationship with Obama. Two other gay members of the church were Larry Bland and Nate Spencer. Young and Bland were brutally murdered, execution style, in late 2007. Bland was murdered on November 17, 2007 and Young on December 24, 2007. The latter was killed by multiple gunshot wounds. Spencer reportedly died on December 26, 2007, official cause of death: “septicemia, pneumonia, and HIV.”
“DLC” members often went on camping trips arranged by TUCC. Wright reportedly was the head of the “DLC” matchmaking services and ensured that its members protected each other.
The “DLC’s” clientele included Obama and other gay members of TUCC, including, reportedly Young, Bland, and Spencer. Fox 32 Chicago reported that Bland’s mother, Josephine Bland, was so upset at her son inviting men into their home as a result of contacting them through gay web sites like “Adam4Adam,” she moved out.
The gay community in Chicago knows to keep away from the TUCC and “DLC” stories because of the “creepiness” of the operation and the suspicious deaths of the three TUCC gay black men.
Although Obama protected his alternate life style through the secretiveness of the “DLC,” he was not so careful when he proclaimed he was a state senator while frolicking at Man’s Country in uptown Chicago.
Love: Obama’s personal trainer
Reggie Love, a former Duke basketball and football player and unsuccessful National Basketball hopeful, currently serves as Obama’s personal trainer and White House “special assistant” — he has been called Obama’s “body man” – who receives a salary of $104,000 a year. Love is also reportedly one of Obama’s regular gay sex partners. Love joined Obama’s Senate staff in a senior staff position in 2006.
Media General’s tabloid, the National Enquirer, proffered a story last year about Michelle Obama being furious about the relationship between her husband and his “body man.” The Enquirer’s sister tabloid, The Globe, later floated a story about Obama having a relationship with a Democratic campaign official named Vera Baker. WMR has been told that this relationship was a clever ruse to throw off speculation about Obama’s actual past sex partners. Baker has apparently left the United States for relatively more obscurity in Martinique. Media General’s tabloids have scooped the mainstream media on sex scandals involving Bill Clinton and Gennifer Flowers and Monica Lewinsky, Tiger Woods, and John Edwards and Rielle Hunter.
WMR’s Chicago sources believe the Secret Service records of presidential candidate Obama’s activities in Chicago would show that Obama regularly arrived at Love’s Chicago residence at 9:00 am and departed at 9:15 am. Sources told WMR that while 15 minutes is much too short for a personal training exercise, it is ample time for fellatio.
Bill Frist, “Brokeback Mountain,” and Obama
In 2006, after Obama became the junior senator from Illinois, WMR’s sources in the Congressional Black Caucus reported that there were persistent rumors of gay trysts between Obama and then-GOP Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee. The allegations at the time seemed unbelievable.
However, based on Obama’s penchant for receiving fellatio from older white men, a column written by The Washington Post’s “In the Loop” columnist Al Kamen on April 7, 2006, some four months into Obama’s Senate term, may have expanded relevance. Kamen reported he received an invitation to attend Frist’s “5th Annual VOLPAC ’06 Weekend” in Nashville from April 21st to 23rd and that the invitation card required one to “unbuckle the cowboy’s pants and look inside to see what this was all about.” Kamen opined that the invitation seemed “a bit too ‘Brokeback Mountain.’”
The invitation advertised that the shindig would feature “one-of-a-kind music and special friends,” although Kamen said there was no indication what made the “friends” so “special.” Kamen then wrote, “The back of the card shows the cowboy from behind with a red flowered handkerchief sticking out of his right pocket. Wait a minute — wasn’t there something about how this used to be some kind of code in the gay community years ago? A way to signal each other in crowded, noisy bars? So we checked the GayCityUSA.com’s Hanky Codes. Sure enough, there it was in the chart explaining what they mean: red hanky in right pocket. Oh, dear.”
Rumors about Obama and Frist ran amok in Congressional Black Caucus circles in 2006.
Although Frist ran on the pledge of only serving two terms, he became Senate Majority Leader with all the perks of the office. WMR’s sources in Chicago’s gay community revealed that Frist’s Majority Leader predecessor, Senator Trent Lott of Mississippi, was also known to seek the services of male prostitutes. Frist, who said he planned to run for President in 2006, decided against a run for the White House and also declined a run for Tennessee governor in 2010.
With the rumor mill running at full speed in 2006, it is obvious why Frist abandoned politics so quickly for the medical business. Frist later endorsed Obama’s health care proposals. A year later, when GOP Senator Larry Craig was arrested while soliciting for sex in a men’s toilet stall at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, he changed his mind about immediately resigning his Senate seat. Knowing about his colleagues’ behavior, he dug in his heels and completed his term in January 2009.
Rahm the “Sugar Daddy”
Obama’s chief of staff Emanuel, who won a scholarship to the Joffrey Ballet but turned it down to attend college, is married and, like Obama, has children, in Emanuel’s case, a son and two daughters.
However, Emanuel, who is 50, also travel frequently with a male companion, a wealthy Chicago real estate developer, some five to six years his senior. WMR has learned from Chicago’s gay community as well as political sources that Emanuel and his friend have gone together on a trip to India, skiing vacations, and soon plan a vacation in Florida, sans Mrs. Emanuel and the kids.
In Chicago’s gay community, Emanuel is known as “sugar daddy,” promising young men with perks and lucrative positions if they sleep with him. On occasion, Emanuel has been with older men, such as his travel companion, but his preference is young, according to WMR’s sources. Emanuel also often uses bicycling and basketball venues to make his approaches. Being an Emanuel “basketball buddy” is a key to professional success.
WMR spoke to one member of the gay community in Chicago who had first hand knowledge of one of Emanuel’s bed partners, an older man who runs a non-profit symphony organization.
Obama’s other sex partners
WMR has previously reported on Obama’s past trysts with Alabama Democratic U.S. Representative Artur Davis, a current primary candidate for governor of Alabama. Although not in the same class, Obama and Davis attended Harvard Law School during an overlap of their attendance at the law school.
The information on Davis and Obama was gathered by opposition researchers for former Alabama Representative Earl Hilliard, who Davis defeated in the 2002 Democratic primary. Recently, WMR was informed by sources in Alabama that Attorney General Eric Holder traveled three days ago to Alabama to inform Davis that if he loses his primary race, he would be nominated by Obama to fill the job of U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Alabama, a position still held by Bush-appointee Leura Canary, one of the main prosecutors of convicted and jailed former Alabama Democratic Governor Don Siegelman.
Chicago sources also informed WMR of another past gay partner of Obama, Massachusetts Democratic Governor Deval Patrick.
|Men who have reportedly had sexual relations with Barack Obama Donald Young, TUCC Choir director
Larry Sinclair, gay escort
Reggie Love, White House presidential assistant and Obama’s “body man”
Artur Davis, US Representative from Alabama and gubernatorial candidate
Bill Frist, former GOP Senate Majority Leader
Deval Patrick, Governor of Massachusetts
The Clear and Present Blackmail Threat
Leading secret alternate life styles, Obama and his chief of staff provide classic blackmail threats. Considering Obama’s choice for the Supreme Court, Elena Kagan, who is reputedly a semi-open lesbian, the question must be posed how much Obama’s and Emanuel’s own covert life styles led to the decision to nominate Kagan, someone with no experience on a judicial bench.
Similarly, the fact that so much is known about Obama’s and Emanuel’s trysts in Chicago begs another important question. If politicians, gay community activists, and journalists in the Windy City are aware of Obama’s and Emanuel’s highly blackmailable gay life styles, the same can certainly hold true for the executives of one of Chicago’s corporate headquarters — that of BP America’s Production Operations.
Throw in the intelligence agencies of America’s allies, friends, enemies, and the situation becomes a clear and present danger to the national security of the United States.
Wayne Madsen is a Washington, DC-based investigative journalist, author and syndicated columnist. He has written for several renowned papers and blogs.
Madsen is a regular contributor on Russia Today. He has been a frequent political and national security commentator on Fox News and has also appeared on ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS, CNN, BBC, Al Jazeera, and MS-NBC. Madsen has taken on Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity on their television shows. He has been invited to testifty as a witness before the US House of Representatives, the UN Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, and an terrorism investigation panel of the French government.
As a U.S. Naval Officer, he managed one of the first computer security programs for the U.S. Navy. He subsequently worked for the National Security Agency, the Naval Data Automation Command, Department of State, RCA Corporation, and Computer Sciences Corporation.
Madsen is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), Association for Intelligence Officers (AFIO), and the National Press Club.
By Kourosh Ziabari
Prof. Gilbert Achcar is a renowned Lebanese academician, writer, socialist and anti-war activist. He left Lebanon in 1983 and taught international relations and politics at the University of Paris VII for several years. Since 2007, Achcar has been Professor of Development Studies and International Relations at the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London. He is a frequent contributor to Le Monde Diplomatique and ZNet.
Prof. Achcar joined me in an interview to discuss the latest developments related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Israel’s attack on the Freedom Flotilla and the prospect of Israel’s occupation of West Bank and Gaza.
Kourosh Ziabari: Dear Prof. Achcar, what’s your estimation of the prospect of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?
Gilbert Achcar: This is extremely difficult to answer because the situation of the Middle East is changing so quickly and frequently that any kind of prediction about the future is always very risky, so what I can say in reply to your question is that in the foreseeable future, there can’t be any serious and acceptable compromise leading to a peaceful coexistence between Israel and the Palestinians. The reason is that the Israeli society has been continuously shifting to the right so that more and more extreme branches of Zionism are governing Israel, and therefore it’s extremely difficult to imagine that governments like the present government of Israel would make all of the concessions that are required for a true peace with the Palestinians. There can’t be any beginning of peace actually without an end to the occupation of the territories that were occupied since 1967, the dismantlement of the separation wall which Israel has been building and the dismantlement of the settlements. These are basic conditions to which of course one should add the immediate lifting of the blockade of Gaza. So, there’s absolutely no indication at present that the Israeli government as it is, has any inclination to go in that direction.
KZ: Both of the Palestinians and the Israelis, from a religious viewpoint, claim that the land of Israel belongs to them. Both of them cite the historical evidences and religious implications in this regard. What’s your idea about that? How should this interminable conflict come to an end?
GA: This should be hardly debatable among serious people because it’s absolutely clear that when the United Nations voted on the partition of Palestine and voted on creating a Jewish state on Palestine which was the goal of the Zionists, it gave 56 percent of the land of Palestine to the Jewish population which constituted only one third of the whole population. Moreover, the majority of this one third were immigrants, the overwhelming majority of whom had been in Palestine less than 15 years, so there is no fair standard on earth by which this kind of resolution could be considered as legitimate and just; it was completely unjust and completely unfair. No people on earth would admit that recently arrived immigrants have a right to establish their own state in their country. However, I believe that a just solution to the problem is one that would not involve any new expulsion of population; it should be a solution based on democratic principles and peaceful coexistence of Muslims, Christians and Jews, Arabs and Israelis in the region. But, for this to happen, the very nature of Israel’s relationship with its environment should change whereas what we’re seeing now is more and more violence, barbarity and cruelty on the part of Israel.
KZ: Israelis believe and claim that they should have a state with its borders spanned from Nile to Euphrates. This is the “Promised Land” which they recurrently refer to. What do you think about that? Is it a reasonable and justifiable claim?
GA: Even in Israel, very few people subscribe to this view. Only some extremist branches of Zionism believe in this idea. It sounds so absurd that only crazy people can uphold such perspectives. Now, if we had to redraw the map of the world to go back to how the world was 2,000 years ago, we can imagine what a terrible mess would happen in the whole world. Besides, there’s much debate even on the fact that the European Jews who came to Palestine in the 20th century are descendants of the Jews who were in Palestine 2,000 years ago. But even if that were the case, and again, if we had to redraw the map of the world as it was 2,000 years ago, why not 3,000 years ago or 1,000 years ago? So the only legitimate claim to a land is that of the people who were living on it in recent centuries. But no Palestinian group among the main Palestinian forces is calling for the expulsion of Jews and Israelis from the Middle East. All of them call for coexistence, but coexistence based on democratic principles and on equal footing, not the present situation of very harsh oppression of the Palestinians and the Lebanese by Israel.
KZ: Some Arab nations are progressively taking steps to normalize their ties with Israel. We can name the United Arab Emirates which invited the Israel’s transport and infrastructure minister to an international summit held in Abu Dhabi. Other Arab states, in turn, are making efforts to establish new relations with Israel. Isn’t it going to be harmful and destructive for the cause of Palestinian people?
GA: Four countries have established relations with Israel among the Arab states and they are Egypt, Jordan, Qatar and Oman. This is damaging for the cause of the Palestinians, especially when the country betraying them is Egypt which is the largest Arab country. This is a result of the increasing hegemony of the United States over the Middle East, which pushes the Arab governments to establish relations with the state of Israel against the will of their own people. If you look at Jordan and Egypt, you’ll see that the overwhelming majority of their population is opposed to Israel and its policies, and this creates a wide gap between governmental policies and what the population wants.
KZ: What’s your view regarding the recent Israeli assault on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla? What would happen if another country rather than Israel, say Iran, had attacked the flotilla of 600 international peace activists? Would the international community’s response have been the same?
GA: You should ask me what would happen if the United States had attacked the flotilla, because they do such things quite often. But, you’re right in saying that Israel gets the least protest in comparison with other countries when it comes to the violation of international law and perpetration of war crimes and crimes against humanity. This judgment is in line with the reports of Judge Richard Goldstone who is a devout Jew and even a devout Zionist, but honest enough for acknowledging the fact that Israel committed war crimes and crimes against humanity in Gaza. So of course Israel gets much less condemnation than any countries that are opposed to the United States and to Western hegemony. One should say, however, that Israel started to lose even the support of Western public opinion recently, especially since the Gaza war of 2008-2009 which was a brutal and cruel attack on defenseless civilians and was criticized even by traditional friends of Israel. After the attack on Freedom Flotilla, the international condemnation of Israel reached an unprecedented level. A few countries cut their diplomatic relations with Israel in Latin America like Venezuela and Bolivia in the last year and Nicaragua in the current year. A number of countries recalled their ambassadors: we have seen a shift in the stance of public opinion and even a wave of protests has taken shape in the United States. So there’s been a real impact and this shows that the Israeli state by its cruelty and brutality is losing more and more ground in the global public opinion.
KZ: The Saudi King has recently made remarks in which he likened Iran’s government to the state of Israel and said that these two countries don’t deserve to exist. Is this a fair and rational statement? Doesn’t it damage the Islamic solidarity and integrity?
GA: First of all, this statement, if true, is a really infamous statement. Putting Iran and Israel on the same level is totally absurd. Israel is a state that has been created through a colonial process and is violently oppressing the original population of the land it seized. Iran is a country which has been there for a long period of history and there was no involvement of colonial powers in its creation. Its government is certainly more legitimate than that of the Saudi kingdom, which was established by armed conquest less than one century ago, and never elected since then. However, the Saudi King meant probably that both the Israeli government and the Iranian government are extremist to his taste. The truth is that the Saudi regime is the most reactionary and the most backward regime in the whole region. They’re closer to the Taliban than to anything else in terms of regime and society. Saudi rulers are better advised to change their own regime rather than trying to change the regimes in other countries.
Kourosh Ziabari is Iranian media correspondent, freelance journalist and the author of Book 7+1. He is acontributing writer for websites and magazines in the Netherlands, Canada, Italy, Hong Kong, Bulgaria, South Korea, Belgium, Germany, the U.K. and the U.S. . Currently, he works for the Foreign Policy Journal as a media correspondent. He is a member of Tlaxcala Translators Network for Linguistic Diversity and World Student Community for Sustainable Development. Kourosh Ziabari is an Iranian freelance journalist and media correspondent. He has interviewed political commentator and linguist Noam Chomsky, member of New Zealand parliament Keith Locke, Australian politician Ian Cohen, member of German Parliament Ruprecht Polenz, former Mexican President Vicente Fox, former U.S. National Security Council advisor Peter D. Feaver, Nobel Prize laureate in Physics Wolfgang Ketterle, Nobel Prize laureate in Chemistry Kurt Wüthrich, Nobel Prize laureate in biology Robin Warren, famous German political prisoner Ernst Zündel, Brazilian cartoonist Carlos Latuff, American author Stephen Kinzer, syndicated journalist Eric Margolis, former assistant of the U.S. Department of the Treasury Paul Craig Roberts, American-Palestinian journalist Ramzy Baroud and the former President of the American Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Sid Ganis.
K Ziabari contribute regularly to Opinion Maker
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