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Octafish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 08:14 AM
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The Gulag Americano
Beware: Odds are Smirk hasn't read Solzhenitsyn,

but people who work for him probably have.

The Gulag Americano

by Sean Gonsalves
July 22, 2008

Whenever Im grasping for perspective amid the creeping fascism of the present moment, I reach for the autobiography of someone who struggled to live a meaningful life under historical circumstances worse than mine.

Aleksander Solzhenitsyns The Gulag Archipelago, which very personally details the soul-crushing oppression Stalin imposed across the Soviet Union, does the trick.

If just for the sheer power and passion of the prose, I suggest you put it on your summer reading list, though what compelled me to read it wasnt a desire to revel in first-rate writing. Im reading it because well this is post 9/11 America, where torture as official policy is countenanced by a so-called freedom-loving people, the majority of whom dare call themselves Christians. In journalism, objectivity has its place. But to remain detached in the face of torture is lose ones humanity.

The 10-minute video released last week showing a 16-year-old Omar Khadr weeping, calling for his mommy, as he is questioned by clearly sadistic Canadian intelligence agents in 2003, provides the first glimpse of interrogations inside the Guantanamo military prison.

Still imprisoned as an enemy combatant five years later in the Gulag Americano on the island of Cuba, the video ought to send shivers down the spine of any moral being on the planet.


Bush and the NAZIs that love him dream of an American Gulag filled with "Enemy Combatants" -- what used to be called the "Loyal Opposition."
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Octafish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 12:09 PM
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1. COINTELPRO Returns: My First-Hand Experience With Government Spies
J Eager Beaver was a real shit.

His ideological descendants are NAZIs.

COINTELPRO Returns: My First-Hand Experience With Government Spies

My Constitutionally protected dissent was monitored by the Feds.

Posted by Dave Zirin
Huffington Post at 7:55 AM on July 21, 2008.

Finally, at long last, I have something in common with Muhammad Ali.

No, I'm not the heavyweight champion of the world, and haven't been named spokesperson for Raid bug spray. Like "the Greatest" - not to mention far too many others -- I have been a target of state police surveillance for activities -- in my case against the death penalty -- that were legal, non-violent, and, so we assumed, constitutionally protected. In classified reports compiled by the Maryland State Police and the Department of Homeland Security, I am "Dave Z." This nickname was given by an undercover agent known to us as "Lucy." She sat in our meetings of the Campaign to End the Death Penalty, smiling and engaged, taking copious notes about actions deemed threatening by the Governor of Maryland, Robert Ehrlich. Our seditious crimes, as Lucy reported, involved such acts as planning to set up a table at the local farmer's market and writing up a petition. Adding a dash of farce to this outrage, she was monitoring us in the liberal enclave of Takoma Park, Maryland, a place known more for vegans than violence, more for tie-dying than terrorism.

Thanks to the Freedom of Information Act and the ACLU, we now know that "Lucy" was only one part of a vast, insidious project. The Maryland State Police's Department of Homeland Security devoted near 300 hours and thousands of taxpayer dollars from 2005 and 2006 to harassing people whose only crime was dissenting on the question of the war in Iraq and Maryland's use of death row.

My dear friend Mike Stark, a board member of the Campaign to End the Death Penalty is at times referred to in "Lucy's" report as a "socialist" and an "anarchist." One can only assume this is the pathetic time honored tradition of reducing people to simple caricatures, all the better to garner Homeland Security grant money.

Veteran peace activist in Baltimore, Max Obuszewski, who initiated the suit, was as well consistently shadowed as he walked down the streets. His "primary crime" (their lingo) was entered into the homeland security database as "terrorism - anti govern(ment)." His "secondary crime" was listed as "terrorism -- anti-war protesters." The database is known as the Washington-Baltimore High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, or


Where did my country go?

Poppy, you reading?
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hootinholler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 01:18 PM
Response to Original message
2. Der Fishie, you are indeed a DU treasure...
I've been thinking about adding Solzhenitsyn to my reading list, but alas, I can't spell it.

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Octafish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 04:54 PM
Response to Reply #2
Wonder if Sen. Wellstone was classified an "Enemy Combatant"?

Gitmo Justice for US Citizens?

By Robert Parry
July 21, 2008

A conservative-dominated U.S. Appeals Court has opened the door for President George W. Bush or a successor to throw American citizens as well as non-citizens into a legal black hole by designating them enemy combatants, even if they have engaged in no violent act and are living on U.S. soil.

The federal Appeals Court in Richmond, Virginia, ruled 5-4 on July 15 that Bush had the right, while prosecuting the war on terror, to hold Qatari citizen (and Peoria, Illinois, resident) Ali al-Marri indefinitely as an enemy combatant.

But some of the courts more liberal judges expressed alarm, saying the legal reasoning that denied al-Marri meaningful due process not only trampled on American legal traditions but could be used to lock up U.S. citizens as well.

For over two centuries of growth and struggle, peace and war, the Constitution has secured our freedom through the guarantee that, in the United States, no one will be deprived of liberty without due process of law, wrote Judge Diana Motz, a Bill Clinton appointee, who dissented against the courts approval of sweeping presidential powers.

Motz noted that al-Marri has been imprisoned for more than five years, without acknowledgement of the protection afforded by the Constitution, solely because the Executive believes that his indefinite military detention or even the indefinite military detention of a similarly situated American citizen is proper.


Hey, Hoot! Same goes for You, my Friend!
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hootinholler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 05:17 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. I'm trying to figure out how this only has 3 recs.
Thanks for the kind words, it's only because of these giants on which I'm standing.

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Octafish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-24-08 08:29 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. Ignore Function? Here's something worth knowing...
...from a Giant:

We Know the Truth

By Gaeton Fonzi

Note: The following is a speech delivered by Gaeton Fonzi at the Third Annual November in Dallas conference in 1998. The speech was made as Mr. Fonzi accepted JFK Lancers Pioneer Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Investigation of the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy. It appears here with permission of its author.


Now, its ironic that while the program calls for me to talk about The Future, I think of something Mary Ferrell said five years ago, on the 30th anniversary of the assassination of President Kennedy.

Mary said then, I am very much concerned that we are on the threshold of a failure from which there will be no forgiveness. We must win this struggle for truth, she said, and do so very quickly, lest the assassination of President Kennedy flounder on some remote shoulder of highway, in a century whose history is on the way to the printer. In the next century, this case could be relegated to obscure questions on high school history examinations.

In that analysis, I believe, Mary Ferrell has flashed a laser of guidance into the futures dark tunnel. We must win this struggle for truth, she said.

...We must win this struggle for truth... Let me suggest to you tonight that its time to go well beyond the focus of that charge. Let me suggest to you tonight that we have not only emerged victorious in that struggle, but that the truth has long ago rushed into our arms seeking our embrace. Perhaps, in fact, it got too close for us to accept it. But it was known to us from the beginning. The truth was known to us almost immediately on that fateful day thirty five years ago when a barrage of gun fire --- a barrage of gun fire --- echoed through Dealey Plaza. The truth was known to us in the Governments immediate designation of the assassin and the Governments immediate extermination of that designated assassin. The truth was known to us in the Governments immediate actions to cover that truth, in the immediate Government-generated deluge of misinformation to the public, in the Governments squalid attempt at feigning a legitimate investigation. The truth was as obvious as a bright morning sun rising from the sea on a cloudless blue-sky day. It was ours to grasp, to hold, to proclaim.

But only a few brave souls did, their voices micro-cries that were quickly muffled. The rest of us chose not to face the truth, to avoid its harsh and terrible glare, its shocking significance and awesome implications. We were reinforced in this decision by the media and academia, who abandoned their responsibility as societys pursuers and preservers of the truth. And so we pliantly donned the dark glasses handed to us by the Government and saw the truth become a distant aspiration, deliberately shadowed with mystery and puzzlement.

And over the years the initial false question --- Who really killed President Kennedy? --- was massaged into the more durable: We wont ever really know the truth, will we?

My own experience was strangely dichotomous. Perhaps that can only be fully understood by those who came of age in that era, the seemingly placid, trustful Eisenhower years. While the Sixties brought sparks of awakening dissent to emerging youth, those in my generation clung to our self-centered and trusting perspective of the Governments role. It would take a lot to shake it.


Thanks for giving a damn, hootinholler! Thanks to you and the millions across the country and around the world who care, we have a chance to put these gangsters, mass-murderers, NAZIs, warmongers, traitors and who-knows-what-satan-worshipping turds behind bars.
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