Saturday, December 20, 2003

Saddam held by Kurds, drugged and left for US troops?

Follow Up Story-What Haven't We Heard?

Sunday Herald: Revealed: who really found Saddam?

The Age/AU: US Saddam claims being challenged

Saddam Hussein was captured by US troops only after he had been taken prisoner by Kurdish forces, drugged and abandoned ready for American soldiers to recover him, a British tabloid newspaper has reported.

Saddam came into the hands of the Kurdish Patriotic Front after being betrayed to the group by a member of the al-Jabour tribe, whose daughter had been raped by Saddam's son Uday, leading to a blood feud, reported the Sunday Express, which quoted an unnamed senior British military intelligence officer.

The newspaper said the full story of events leading up to the ousted Iraqi president's capture on December 13 near his hometown of Tikrit in northern Iraq, "exposes the version peddled by American spin doctors as incomplete".

A former Iraqi intelligence officer, whom the Express did not name, told the paper that Saddam was held prisoner by a leader of the Kurdish Patriotic Front, which fought alongside US forces during the Iraq war, until he negotiated a deal.

The deal apparently involved the group gaining political advantage in the region.

An unnamed Western intelligence source in the Middle East told the Express: "Saddam was not captured as a result of any American or British intelligence. We knew that someone would eventually take their revenge, it was just a matter of time."

-- AFP


Asia Times OnLine: Part 1: How Saddam may still nail Bush

Pan Am 103 Victims' Families Experience Mixed Feelings of Betrayal, Skepticism, Disappointment in Libyan Developments


"I feel betrayed by President Bush.
This is all about money and oil, it is disgusting.
It's a disgraceful act on the part of George Bush, it's a sickening business deal, it will do a lot of harm because Gaddafi will be more powerful, more dangerous than he is now. It is not a wonderful transformation of Gaddafi, there is no change. If Hitler had changed after all he did, would he have been allowed to stay in power?"

Susan Cohen, mother of Pan Am 103-bombing victim Theodora Cohen, who was her only child


This quilt hangs at Hendricks Chapel at Syracuse University.
It holds the names of 35 S.U. students
who were taken from us by a heinous act of terror involving Moammar Khadafy's Libyan agents on December 21, 1988.
Imagine giving busines, respect and trust to Osama Bin Laden in another 15 years.
Dear God.

"...U.S. officials did not publicly discuss the lifting of sanctions against Libya, which have prevented U.S. oil companies from reclaiming their interest in the country's lucrative but antiquated oil industry. The U.S. companies have long been eager to return to the North African nation, but have been stopped by the Pan Am Flight 103 case and the ongoing punishment of Libya for its weapons program and terrorist past.

"Libya can regain a secure and respected place among the nations, and over time, achieve far better relations with the United States," Bush said.

Bush made no mention the crash of Pan Am Flight 103 or the families of those who died.

Susan Cohen, whose daughter was killed when a bomb exploded as the jetliner flew above Lockerbie, Scotland, on Dec. 21, 1988, said she was disturbed by Bush's omission and by the agreement announced yesterday.

"It was a total betrayal," Cohen said. Gaddafi "blew up a plane. God knows, if this can happen, Osama bin Laden can come back."

Bob Monetti, who lost his 20-year-old son aboard the flight, said he remains suspicious of Libya's motives but is willing to give Gaddafi a chance.

"Most of us are in a 'Let's-see-what-goes-on attitude.' If, in fact, they have changed their stripes, maybe we should just get on with it," said Monetti, president of Families of Pan Am 103. "I still don't believe it, but it could actually be happening. It's in our financial interest that some of this happen, and we're still really skeptical about it."


Must-read: Whiskey Bar- Coddling Dictators--"..Saddam baaaad. Ghadafi goooood."


Why are we letting this scummy dictator who killed our citizens in a burning act of terror in 1988 and recently got caught developing WMDs stay in power..sanction-free? you do, too!


William Safire has not forgotten the Syracuse University 35........yet looks cautiously/optimistically forward to doing dirty business with this damned forefather of Osama Bin-Laden. So this is the American way? Frankly, I'm sickened at the realization of our blatant hypocrisy.

"....I remember Colonel Qaddafi's underground poison-gas factory — "Auschwitz in the Sand" — and wonder where he bought Libya's present stock of centrifuges. As a Syracuse University dropout and trustee, I visit the memorial on campus to the 35 college students aboard Pan Am 103 whose blood can never be washed from his hands.

It may be, "for reasons of state" — like Musa Kussa's help in penetrating terrorist-protecting parts of Syrian and Saudi intelligence services — we should ultimately permit our investors to revive Libya's oil industry. But we should verify and never trust, and neither forget nor forgive Muammar Qaddafi."

Cheney to be prosecuted?

Paris - "A French prosecutor is examining whether to prosecute US Vice President Dick Cheney over alleged complicity in the abuse of corporate assets dating from the time he was head of the services company Halliburton, the French newspaper Le Figaro said on Saturday.
The case stems from a contract by a consortium including the American company Kellogg, Brown and Root (KBR), a Halliburton subsidiary, and a French company, Technip, to supply a gas complex to Nigeria, the newspaper reported. (SEE OCTOBER, 2003 STORY)
A Paris investigating magistrate has been conducting investigations since October into allegations that $180m were paid in secret commissions during the late 1990s up to 2002 from funds established by the consortium in Madeira, the report said.
Cheney was Halliburton's chief executive between 1995 and 2000.
In a letter to the attorney-general's department, magistrate Reynaud van Ruymbeke ruled out directly prosecuting Cheney on a charge of bribing foreign officials, Le Figaro said.
But the official did not exclude the possibility of prosecution on the grounds of complicity in misuse of corporate assets, it added...."

Well, well...what do you know?
Newsflash: Halliburton has filed for KBR bankruptcy!


Pentagon says Halliburton won't turn in papers-WSJ
December 19, 2003

"The Pentagon has accused Vice President Dick Cheney's former firm Halliburton Co of refusing to turn over internal documents that show the company knowingly overcharged taxpayers $61 million for work in Iraq, the Wall Street Journal said on Friday. The newspaper said the dispute over the documents is outlined in a Dec. 10 letter from the Defense Contract Audit Agency to a top official at Kellogg Brown & Root[KBR], the Halliburton unit handling more than $5 billion of work in Iraq.
"It has come to my attention that DCAA has been denied access to and/or copies of internal audit documents and reports performed on KBR operations," the newspaper quotes the letter as saying."

KBR Bankruptcy News/Information

BBC: Asbestos Is The Reason Halliburton Bankrupts KBR

".....The bankruptcy proceedings will not effect KBR's government services division, which is currently accused of overcharging the US military for some of its services..."

**They can go on stealing from all of us**



Helen Thomas: Cheney Hypocritical In Telling Media To Check Facts

"....Vice President Dick Cheney is accusing the press of "cheap shot journalism" in covering the Bush administration, claiming "people don't check the facts."

Cheney is miffed over a raft of stories about his ties to Halliburton Co., a Houston-based energy conglomerate, which is a major recipient of U.S. contracts to rebuild Iraq.

While he's lecturing about accuracy, Cheney should do some fact-checking of his own statements about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction weapons. The vice president's prewar chant about such weapons helped lead the nation into war."


Molly Ivins: Dick Cheney and the Axis of Avarice

"......Halliburton, the oilfield equipment company, merely kept Saddam Hussein's oil fields pumping, the only thing that allowed the s.o.b. to stay in power. Halliburton cleverly ran its business with Saddam through two of its subsidiaries, Dresser Rand and Ingersoll-Dresser, in order to avoid the sanctions.

Unlike the Germans, the French and the Russians, Halliburton was not punished by the Bush administration for dealing with the dictator. Instead, it got the largest reconstruction contract given by this administration, with an estimated value between $5 billion and $15 billion. And the company got the contract without competitive bidding.

Halliburton has amply repaid the administration's faith. The Pentagon is now investigating the company for at least $120 million in overcharges, including $60 million for importing gasoline into Iraq and $67 million on a food services contract. Among the allegations are that Halliburton had blood in its food service refrigerators and is serving our soldiers rotten meat.

I think the French will particularly enjoy being lectured on their hypocrisy, preferably by Cheney himself. It's the kind of thing sophisticated people especially appreciate."
Robert Muller: Good Morning, World-
Earth Peace Plan 2010

"....Since so many of my dreams have been fulfilled during my life, I believe that dreams are the surest ways to new realities.

My ultimate dream is to see this Earth preserved and improved as the most beautiful paradise in the universe with a humanity living in peace, well-being and utmost happiness in it.

Is that dream too big? I do not believe so. All we have to do is to dream it, to want it, to work for it and it will happen."

Paul Krugman on Iraq: We Should Be Deeply Disturbed About the History of This War

" long as you wave the flag convincingly enough, it doesn't matter whether you tell the truth.."



"......Now maybe, just maybe, Saddam's capture will start a virtuous circle in Iraq. Maybe the insurgency will evaporate; maybe the cost to America, in blood, dollars and national security, will start to decline.

But even if all that happens, we should be deeply disturbed by the history of this war. For its message seems to be that as long as you wave the flag convincingly enough, it doesn't matter whether you tell the truth.

By now, we've become accustomed to the fact that the absence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction — the principal public rationale for the war — hasn't become a big political liability for the administration. That's bad enough. Even more startling is the news from one of this week's polls: despite the complete absence of evidence, 53 percent of Americans believe that Saddam had something to do with 9/11, up from 43 percent before his capture. The administration's long campaign of guilt by innuendo, it seems, is still working.

The war's more idealistic supporters do, I think, feel queasy about all this. That's why they lay so much stress on their hopes for democracy in Iraq. They're not just looking for a happy ending; they're looking for moral redemption for a war fought on false pretenses."


Harold Myerson's Statement on the topic is here:

American Prospect: Muted Joy
Why Saddam Hussein's capture is a terrific result of a terrible policy.

"....The ousting of the Baathists is not just good in itself; it's great in itself. But it was never simply "in itself," of course. Ousting Hussein as Bush undertook the task also required a rewriting of the norms of international conduct in favor of wars of choice, and the norms of domestic discourse in favor of systematic presidential deception, of waging a war on false pretenses. From the vantage point of any street corner in Baghdad, these changes, I acknowledge, may seem damned inconsequential. But we are not in Baghdad, and what were imperatives there were always choices here.

We do not know what will ultimately follow Saddam Hussein, whether in five years' time we will be opposing some militant, theocratic regime that has risen in its place. What's before us now, though, with all the irony of which history is capable, is a terrific consequence of a terrible policy...."