The Perspective

Sunday, May 07, 2006

CIA Intelligence Gaps on Iran and the 'certainty' of the White House

There seems to be a bit of shaking going in the CIA leadership that, according to the NY Times, is centered around Intelligence Gaps on Iran's nuclear intentions.


... A year after a presidential commission gave a scathing assessment of intelligence on Iran, they say, American spy agencies remain severely handicapped in their efforts to assess its weapons programs and its leaders' intentions. Whoever takes the helm of the C.I.A., after the resignation on Friday of Porter J. Goss, will confront a crucial target with few, if any, American spies on the ground, sketchy communications intercepts and ambiguous satellite images, the experts say.


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CIA officials aren't even sure who is in the room when these policy decisions are made let alone their outcomes, but the American ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, and VP Dick Cheney are far more sure beyond any facts for various reasons.


A majority of Iranian parliamentarians said in a statement that if the United Nations invoked Chapter VII, Parliament would call on the government to consider quitting the nuclear treaty, Reuters reported


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Mr. Bolton said Parliament's threat would not deter a United Nations resolution. "It shows they remain desperate to conceal that their nuclear program is in fact a weapons program," he said, according to The A.P.


I guess he's trying to 'build' the facts now.


This is exactly why invading Iraq was a mistake. It was never about weapons of mass destruction or any involvement in the 9/11 attacks. Some people say it was about euro-petros (accepting oil payments in euros), other say it is strategic to Israel, but personally it looks like support for Osama Bin Laden, for two reasons; one, it takes the focus off of Bin Laden again, and two it makes America look a bit Roman, which can only help Bin Laden's claim of an Evil Empire in the eyes of the middle east.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Media Spin on Iran

On the front page of the New York Times, the Propaganda war rages on. The article points out that Iran's President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad claimed that Iran was using P2-centrifuge technology to produce it enriched uranium:



NY TIMES



The assertion involves Iran's claim that even while it begins to enrich small amounts of uranium, it is pursuing a far more sophisticated way of making atomic fuel that American officials and inspectors say could speed Iran's path to developing a nuclear weapon.



Iran has consistently maintained that it abandoned work on this advanced technology, called the P-2 centrifuge, three years ago. Western analysts long suspected that Iran had a second, secret program based on the black market offerings of the renegade Pakistani nuclear engineer Abdul Qadeer Khan separate from the activity at its main nuclear facility at Natanz. But they had no proof.



Then on Thursday, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said that Tehran was "presently conducting research" on the P-2 centrifuge, boasting that it would quadruple Iran's enrichment powers. The centrifuges are tall, thin machines that spin very fast to enrich, or concentrate, uranium's rare component, uranium 235, which can fuel nuclear reactors or atom bombs.



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Okay, wait a second. For 3 years I have been seeing articles about the possible threat that the Iran "regime" poses. I don't know about you, but when I saw the word President today something struck that hadn't before, so I did a little research to figure out how their political system worked and found out it operates like a democracy. It has an Executive Branch headed by an elected official from a popular vote. It also has a Judicial and a Legislative. If anyone knows more specifics help out.



the other thing that occured to me was that in order for this information about the p-2 centrifuge to be accurate there had to be a second facility they weren't acknowledging to the IAEA, but wait let look at what he said. I think it is important to keep in mind that this leader often over-states Iran's position and demands respect for it. It has also occured to me that if his policies were failing, that of a grass roots economic official, he going to try and use tyhe opertunity to gather support from his voter base. It may be a theocratic democracy, but he still has to earn his votes..



A quote from an article in the Washington Post: Rafsanjani's announcement may have been aimed at trumping his rival and taking credit for progress in the nuclear program, which has broad support in Iran, analysts said.



So here what he says according to the NY Times: "presently conducting research" on the P-2 centrifuge, boasting that it would quadruple Iran's enrichment powers. Hmm... He obviously didn't say the whole sentence or the quotation marks would have encompassed it all, right. Lets see what he did say about from the transcript of the announcement April 9th... That's strange. I cant find it anywhere on the internet, (again if anyone has a link to this please post it), but I did find a few article writen the day after the nationally televised speech (Iran).



This article discuss 164 centrifuges:



"We operated the first unit which comprises of 164 centrifuges, gas was injected, and we got the industrial output," Rafsanjani said in an interview with KUNA.



"There needs to be an expansion of operations if we are to have a complete industrial unit; tens of units are required to set up a uranium enrichment plant," said Rafsanjani, who was Ahmadinejad's rival in last year's presidential race.



They don't even have a plant built yet, did you catch that. And they aren't discribing the P-2 centrifuge here. So where did the NY Times get this information?



The Washington Post reported this April 12th:



The International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N. nuclear watchdog group, confirmed that the Iranians were operating an array of 164 centrifuges, and inspectors arriving in Tehran on Wednesday will seek to verify the production of a token amount of nuclear fuel. Producing amounts large enough to power an electrical plant or -- if enriched long enough -- to make a bomb would require several thousand centrifuges, orchestrated in cascades whose constant operation poses significant technical challenges.



"This means they can operate a larger cascade, but can they do it for a long time? We don't know," said a Western official closely involved in monitoring Iran's progress.



Iran had previously enriched uranium to a level of about 2 percent, using a smaller cascade, and separately enriched uranium to about 15 percent during laser experiments in 2002. Bomb-grade uranium must be enriched to a level of well over 80 percent.



IAEA inspectors have monitored much of the work being conducted in Iran during frequent visits over the last month, and the cascade of centrifuges is being monitored by IAEA cameras. Agency officials told diplomats almost a month ago that the Iranians were close to completing the 164-centrifuge cascade and would begin testing it with inert gas and then a small quantity of uranium gas. Though it is technically possible, most nuclear experts agree it is unlikely Iran would be able to make bomb-grade uranium with the 164-centrifuge cascade.



Well none of that sounds like the p-2 centrifuge, and It looks like it would be pretty challenging to accomplish this in secret, considering there efforts here are fundimental at best, as of yet. One thing I'd like to make sure of is that the NY Times is reporting accurate news. This process is taking place in front of cameras and the amounts they would create using this system won't be enough for commercial purposes for some time let alone weapons grades. How is this an immediate threat to anyone?

Friday, March 31, 2006

To Censure or not to Censure...

It's amazing how out of touch the Republican Party in Congress is getting out of touch with the People. Maybe they have read the polls, but America is getting tired of Bush being in the White House; they're tired of the War, and the Lies... But they keep fighting for him every chance they can. Some of the arguments at today's Censure Debate were anything but idle in the wake of what may be "Bigger than Watergate" according to Howard Dean, who testified against Nixon. The common sound bite seems to be the same Partiotic Bullshit about fighting the war on Terrorism and keeping the President capable of leading it. Haven't we establish that Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11? Come to think of it, I have really seen any evidence that points to Osama Bin Laden either.

Oh well... Apples and Oranges I guess. The fact is that the President violated the FISA agreement and should at minimum be forced to stop breaking the law. Feingold made some very good points about the fact that it is still going on and instead of stepping off his high horse Bush is basically telling Congress that he is above them, and the Law and that protecting American's is all about violating their rights. It's kind of Ironic that on the same day they would release all the 9/11 emergency calls and edit out the callers to protect their rights. Excuse me, but they're dead remember, and it was the families that sued NY for the tapes. What about their rights?

Why are Government officials hiding all the evidence from 9/11; like the tapes that recorded the (so called) 757 that flew into the Pentagon, and the fact that the material from the collapsed buildings was shipped to Japan before a thourough investigation could be done, now the callers from inside the building are being silenced. I would think that there lives would be more important than that. After all it was their sacrifice which paved the way to War. They deserve to be heard.

Washington Post Article on Censuring the President

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Muse



Music are the secrets we reveal to ourselves...



It is the Story of our Mystery...



It is the Passion which drives us...



The Satire that mocks us...



The Dream that Manifests our visions...



The Clouds that charm us into dreams...



The Answers to the Questions...



The Murmers in the shadows...



The Culture of our ambitions and distractions...



The reasons for our Madness...


Music is the theme of the soul that words cannot convey alone...


Let me just say that at times, you can find me interested in one thing and days or weeks later another.. I love a good movie, and aspire to be a filmmaker.. I'm always working on a project, and often it's computer related, but in the summer when the weather is perfect you might find me by a waterfall on Kaua'i, or on a beach in Maui. One day I might be at a Hot Spring in Oregon and a Country Faire the next, at 10,ooo ft. in the Tetons, or Rock Climbing in the gym. The one thing you'll never find is me being bored for long, or busy for long. I love playing music and dream of a band where everyone gets along and loves the music we play, and a World full of people spending their day in the sun, swimming in the Ocean, or laying around laughing in the tall grass..

Monday, March 20, 2006

Where the West was Born

In the decline of the Roman Empire, rich land owners had to reevaluated their slavery practices. In those days people who were removed from their native lands by the Roman Empire were often sold as slaves to these rich land owners and kept to work on the Estates they owned. Sometimes hundreds of slaves at a time were used to do everything the "Civilized" people rejected; working in the fields, or washing dishes. These tasks were left to the "Owned". As the Empire went into decline some of the problems surrounding the ownership of slaves to do menial tasks became unresolveable through traditional means, as they died or grew too old to be productive, which was to replace them with new slaves purchased from the conquest of new lands or countries that were unable to pay their taxes according to Rome's Laws.

Land Owners found that the lack of propagation could be solved by separating the slaves into smaller groups (usually a man and woman) and giving each of them a parcel of land to work as long as they paid a percentage of what they produced to the Estate Owner. Soon these rich land owners evolved into the feudal Lords that were able to survive the Dark Ages by offering protection to others in exchange for a percentage of their keep for working with the land stewards of their (lords) lands. It was during this time that we saw a rise in power by the institution of religion, mainly the Roman Catholic Church, that supported the Institution of marriage as a moral system of belief, positioning itself as the hierarchical pinnacle of the emerging society in the West that had survived these Empires Collapse. It is likely that the old cities of Vienna, Rome, Paris, London, etc. grew out of these feudal systems and eventually the original Estate Owners Decendants became the Kings and Queens of these European Cities.

Nowadays the consolidation of Land, wealth, and Military Strength is not held by Kings and Queens, but rather the World's Bankers. Fannie May and Freddie Mac hold the leans on almost every deed in America and the Federal Reserves of the World's Countries hold the Gold and Script (money). The Militaries are held by each Government and they are directed by the Arms Dealers like Carlyle Group, and General Electric, which some directly and others less, own a huge portions of the World's Media; television stations, newspapers... And none of them can make a move without some oversite of the World's Bankers. Alexandra Hamilton was censured by Congress for removing the US money from the National Bank, Lincoln, who couldn't borrow any money for the Civil War, created an interest free 5 dollar note to pay for the war.. He was planning on expanding the program after the war, but he was killed, and Kennedy was planning on calling for an end to the Federal Reserve System as well as failed to support the Cuban invasion..

Curious..

Sunday, March 19, 2006

What up Dog...

I recently moved to a college town in the Pacific Northwest. I won't say which one for various reasons. The whole reason I moved here in the first place was to surround myself with what I would like to consider "Enrichening Culture". I figured a college town might be the place for this, but what I have come to is a highly different conclusion.

In the early 80's I spent a period of four years on the streets in Berkeley California, one of the reasons I have, in the past, considered college towns to be more cultural. Of course Berkeley has more culture than most towns anyways, but looking back I don't think I ever even encountered a single student the whole time I was living there. Now days college towns seem to full of high school students still carrying on the mental attitudes of an America that seriously needs a swift kick in the ass.

I remember reading something about Thomas Jefferson's projections of a Democratic Society. His thinking, which I take with a grian of salt due to his overly Aristocratic behavior, was that the first generation would build the foundations of our Culture. These were the farmers and shop keepers that would develope the land. The second generation were the institutions of higher learning and infrastucture that would build an educated society, which would be the foundation for the artist, poets, and philosophers, the people that give us the means to think about life's purpose and meaning; the ones who would give us quality and clarity in our society.. I guess he never saw the mass consumer as an ingredient to all this, but here it is! The really sad part is that most people don't see how it is watering down our existance into something that is entirely meaningless.

The other day I read an Article in the Time about a new smoking ban that was passed unanimously by the city coucil of Calabassas, CA. It calls for a ban of smoking in any public setting, indoor or out, where it can effect other people through secondary smoke. Calabassas is located in a valley just North of the San Fenando Valley in Los Angeles County. It is along side one of the busiest Freeways leading into Los Angeles. The smog literally "rolls" out of LA and funnels down this valley where it is deposited into Ventura County. I really don't think secondary smoke is as serious a problem as the air around it, to be quite honest, and i highly doubt that it is the cause of Global Warming, but the fine for smoking at a bus stop in that city is now 500 bucks, so If you happened to drop in, don't light up!

You're probably thinking to yourself, "What the *&$% does smoking in Calabassas have to do with College Kids. I guess the point I'm trying to make is that America is a lost child in the World dying of it's own character. The things most American's think are important right now really aren't. I met an writer from London, who picked me up hitchhiking a few years back, and really got an ear-full from him about how dead this society was, how lifeless it seemed to him to see so many places that all looked the same; every corner in every town full of the same unhealthy fast food joints, and massive Walmarts swallowing up all the Mom and Pop stores that used to dot the countrysides. The other day I looked through the dating ads on Yahoo and it seems like every womans favorite thing to do is to Eat! No wonder we are such an obeast Nation lifelessly animated by television and shopping to feel better about how empty we feel..

When I moved to this college town I was really hoping to go to a few poetry readings a week and see an open mic like the ones we used to have in my home town, before they rebuilt the down town there into a new mall looking street to compete with the local mall. In those days there used to be 5 poetry readings a week, several open mics, and theater sports in many of the coffee houses, before the Starbucks strategically put itself in the middle of all their business' and caused them all to close down within a years time. Starbucks hosts nothing and college students are filling the seats, focused on the future and how to build a life-style that suits their consumer dreams of owning the right car, the right clothes, the big house with a swimming pools and a spouce to match.. big dreams. And hopefully, if they are well adjusted, they can join the city council and pass some stupid law that reflects the Political Correctness of the times and ignore the truth entirely, like all the other lemmings who believe they are alive and have pictures to prove it!

And then again..

Friday, March 17, 2006

Abuses or Torture


Friday, March 17, 2006; 12:00 PM - The Washington Post today hosted a Live Chat that discussed the new documentary, "Big Storm: The Lynndie England Story," with Col. Janis Karpinski on the Military's Actions, Abuses and Torture in Abu Ghraib. Sundance Channel will mark the third anniversary of the Iraq War on Sunday, March 19th starting at 9:00pm e/p with a marathon of films relating to the conflict.


The film's blub reads:

Photos of her smile and thumbs-up gesture taken at Iraq’s notorious Abu Ghraib prison are now known around the world as the face of American abuse. In a rare extended interview recorded shortly before her court martial, US reservist soldier Lynndie England tells how a gullible small-town girl from West Virginia found herself at the center of an international scandal. Dutch filmmaker Twan Huys’s disturbing film also features interviews with journalist Seymour Hersh, Paul Bremmer, former Brigadier General Janice Karpinski and England’s family.

I included a few Q & A's from the online chat that I found interesting:

New York, N.Y.: Did the contractors wear military uniforms in the prison, and did they create a "mystic" that implied they were with Military Intelligence for the soldiers?

Did the contractors take the photos or order that photos be taken?

Have you seen the videos that were reportedly made?

Was this torture?

Janis Karpinski: Some of the contractors wore components of the military uniform (for example, they might weare the pants and a different colored T-shirt) and there were some occasions when military interrogators wore civilian clothes to make the prisoner think that they were with the CIA or the FBI. The contractors are the individuals who gave the orders to the soldiers to take the photographs and they are the ones who had the experience at GITMO and brought these techniques with them when they were sent to Iraq and they are also the people who provided the cameras to take these pictures.


No, I have not seen the videos. I've been told that the videos were not videotapes of prisoner abuse but they were videotapes of soldiers misbehaving with other soldiers.

Washington, D.C.: Hi - thanks for chatting online. Can you clarify the chain of command and your place in it?

You state that soldiers were following orders from higher up, and "The chain of command for these soldiers reported to me on a regular basis and never reported any infractions or questionable instructions whatsoever."

Who was in charge? Who did give the orders / instructions? Just wanting a clearer picture of who's involved?

Janis Karpinski: Good questions. At the time these photographs were taken the prison was under the control of the commander of the military intelligence brigade. He was gettin ghis orders form Lt. Gen. Sanchez, the senior commander in Iraq, and absurdly, his intelligence officer was also giving orders on how to continue to obtain information from interrogations and Maj. Gen. Miller, who was not even assigned to Iraq, continued to give instructions to the commander on how to be most effective in interrogation operations. So he, the MI brigade commander (Col. Pappas), had three bosses and most importantly, he didn't work for me, ever.


I can assure you orders for interrogations never came from me.



More blogs about The Washington Post Live Chat.