President Barack Obama got some of the major points wrong when he unveiled his plan to curb projected federal budget deficits. Here's what he said Monday, and how it was wrong. "Today, I'm releasing a plan that details how to pay for the jobs bill, while also playing down our debt over time." In truth, the national debt would increase every year under his plan. According to White House figures, the debt held by the public would increase from $10.2 trillion this year to $17.5 trillion in 2021. According to Republican staff of the Senate Budget Committee, gross debt, which includes not just debt held by the public, but also that held by federal agencies, would increase from $14.9 trillion to $24.6 trillion. While Obama claims that his is a plan to reduce debt by more than $4 trillion, the plan does NOT reduce debt! Assuming that the president misspoke and meant to say the plan would cut projected DEFICITS by $4 trillion over 10 years, that would also be wrong! First, his plan totals $3.6 trillion in proposed tax increases, spending cuts, and interest savings. To get a figure of more than $4 trillion in spending cuts, he counts the $1.2 trillion in spending cuts already enacted over the summer. Second, while he counts the $866 billion in added revenue from letting the Bush tax cuts expire for incomes above $200,000 as he proposes, he doesn't count the cost of extending the Bush tax cuts for incomes below $200,000 as he also proposes.
We all know that the war against Libya is built on fraud. The United Nations Security Council passed two resolutions against Libya on the basis of unproven claims, specifically that Colonel Muammar Qaddafi was killing his own people in Benghazi and Libya. The claim in its exact form was that Qaddafi had ordered Libyan forces to kill 6,000 people in Benghazi and Libya. These claims were widely disseminated, but always vaguely explained. It was on the basis of this claim that Libya was referred to the UN Security Council at UN Headquarters in New York City and kicked out of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. False claims about African mercenary armies in Libya and about jet attacks on civilians were also used in a broad media campaign against Libya. These two claims have been sidelined and have become more and more murky. The massacre claims, however, were used in legal, diplomatic, and military framework to justify NATO's war on Libya! One of the main sources for the claim that Qaddafi was killing his own people is the Libyan League for Human Rights (LLHR). The LLHR was actually pivotal to getting the UN involved through its specific claims in Geneva. On February 21, 2011 the LLHR got the 70 other non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to send letters to President Obama, EU High Representative Catherine Ashton, and the UN Secretary-General Ban-ki Moon, demanding international action against Libya invoking the "Responsibility to Protect" doctrine. Only 25 members of this coalition actually assert that they are human rights groups.
In December 2010, General Electric held its Annual Outlook Investor Meeting at Rockefeller Center in New York City. At the meeting, chief executive Jeffrey Immelt stood on the Saturday Night Live stage and gave the gathered analysts and shareholders a rundown on the global conglomerate's health. But in contrast to the iconic comedy show that is filmed at Rock Center each week, Immelt's tone was solemn. Like many other CEO's at large companies, Immelt pointed out that his firm 's pension plan was an ongoing problem: The "pension has been a drag for a decade," he said, and it would cause the company to lose 13 cents per share the next year. Regretfully, to rein in costs, GE was going to close the pension plan to new employees. The audience had every reason to believe him. An escalating chorus of bloggers, pundits, talk show hosts, and media stories bemoan the burgeoning pension-and-retirement crisis in America, and GE was just the latest of hundreds of companies, from IBM to Verizon, that have slashed pensions and medical benefits for millions of American retirees. To justify these cuts, companies complain they're victims of a "perfect storm" of uncontrollable economic forces, an aging workforce, entitled retirees, a stock market debacle, and an outmoded pension system that cripples their chances of competing against pension-less competitors and companies overseas.
Fukushima's nuclear disaster is a nightmare. Ghostly releases of radioactivity haunt the Japanese countryside. Lives, once safe, are now beset by an ineffable scourge promising vile illness and death. Large sectors of the population are accumulating significant levels of internal contamination, setting the stage for a public health tragedy. A subtle increase in the number of miscarriages and fetal deaths will be the first manifestation that something is amiss. An elevated incidence of birth defects will begin in the Fall and continue into the indefinite future. Thyroid diseases, cardiac diseases and elevated rates of infant and childhood leukemia will follow. Over the next decade and beyond, cancer rates will soar. Chernobyl was the harbinger of this heartbreaking scenario. It taught mankind the inescapable biological truths that emerge within populations internally contaminated by heightened levels of fission products. And yet, government and industry schemers attack these truths as unfounded scare-mongering. With cold indifference, they deny that Chernobyl was a mass casualty event. They turn a blind eye to a huge body of research and deviously proclaim that no evidence exists that more than a handful of people suffered harm from the Ukrainian disaster. They publish propaganda, draped in the guise of science, that dismisses the hazard of low levels of internal contamination. Believing their subterfuge to have been successful and intoxicated by their hubris, they are already positioning themselves to stage-manage the public's perception of Fukushima. Japan's government, its Nuclear Safety Commission, and the Tokyo Electric Power Company have already demonstrated that they will do everything in their power to keep citizens ignorant of what is taking place. The emerging health crisis is scheduled to be erased!
Honorable people like to debate whether the United States of America is a "police state," but when it comes to shutting down the expression of ideas on the political left, there is little room for argument. We are inundated in this country with propaganda boilerplate about being the greatest democracy in the world. No, we are not a police state like our friends in Saudi Arabia, or our former friends, and current enemies, in Iran. Our police agencies have figured out how to accomplish police state repression in a "softer," more sophisticated manner. Look at the September 26 report by Lawrence O'Donnell of MSNBC, on what he describes as a "violent burst of chaos" caused by armed "troublemakers" from the New York Police Department. It was a peaceful demonstration against Wall Street greed. At least it started out that way. All evidence suggests it was, then, sent careening into chaos by the police strong-arming of young protesters who had done nothing but express their views in public. In one incident, young women on the sidewalk observing the arrest of a young man in the street are corralled by cops using orange plastic nets. White-shirted Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna then walks up, un-holsters his pepper spray gun and shoots one of the women full in the face. He re-holsters his weapon and walks away.
Useful advice can be found in the past: Gordius, King of Phrygia, tied an intricate knot, ever since then called the Gordian knot. An oracle told Alexander the Great that whoever could untie it would master Asia. Alexander drew his sword and slashed the knot. He then conquered the lands between Persia and Afghanistan, pushing on as far as the Punjab. There, his exhausted troops rebelled, and his retreat from Asia began. The oracle should have known that the mastery of Asia ultimately belongs to Asians. Barack Obama has promised a withdrawal of many or most American troops from Afghanistan in the months to come. He has not promised the departure of the enormous State Department and mercenary force of "state-builders" and "democracy-creators" and defenders which are already there. This, at least, is the plan, a bad and dangerous one that can be relied upon to fail, because it refuses to face reality. The Gordian knot by which this American project is bound, is the simultaneous conflict and collaboration of the United States and nuclear Pakistan, certain to end in a wounded American withdrawal, if only because Pakistan lives, and has lived since antiquity, in this particular place in Central Asia, and the United States lives in a different world, geographically, psychically and morally, having arrived in Central Asia yesterday, and destined to leave tomorrow.
President Obama's claim that he had Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden "exterminated" deflated the threat from that long-serving "bogyman". A terror organization that left its leader, unarmed and undefended, a sitting duck for assassination, no longer seems formidable. Time for a new, more threatening bogeyman, which will keep the "war on terror" going! Now, America's worst enemy are the Haqqanis. Moreover, unlike Al Qaeda, which was never tied to a country, the Haqqani network, according to Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, is a veritable arm of the Pakistani government's intelligence service. ISI. Washington claims that the ISI ordered its Haggani Network to the US Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, in September 13, along with the US military base in Wadak province. Senator Lindsey Graham, a member of the Armed Services committee and one of the main Republican warmongers, declared that "all options are on the table" and gave the Pentagon his assurance that in Congress there was broad bipartisan support for a US military attack on Pakistan! As Washington has been killing large numbers of Pakistani civilians with drones, and has forced the Pakistani army to hunt for Al Qaeda throughout most of Pakistan, producing tens of thousands or more of dislocated Pakistanis in the process, Senator Graham must have something larger in mind. The Pakistani government thinks so, too. The Pakistani prime minister, Yousuf Raza Gilani, called his foreign minister home from talks in Washington and ordered an emergency meeting of the government to assess the prospect of an American invasion.
The Knesset will vote on a bill calling for full Israeli annexation of the West Bank. Deputy Speaker Danny Danon announced Tuesday that the Knesset will take up the bill, which he authored, at the end of October. The bill also nullifies any financial obligations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority that had been established by previous agreements, according to a statement from Danon's office. "If the Palestinian Authority wishes to proceed on this reckless path and bring further instability into the region, Israel cannot continue to pour funds into this sinking ship of failed leadership," Danon said, referring to the PA's statehood bid at the United Nations last Friday. "The funding agreements with the PA were reached with the hope that their leaders would work to create an environment of lasting peace and security with Israel. Given that it is clear that the Palestinians have no such desire, Israel must no longer be required to stand by these agreements." The bill also nullifies the Oslo Accords, since it reads that "All obligations between the State of Israel and the Palestinian Authority as established by international agreements, will be considered null and void."
The United States Department of Defense has found a nifty way of cutting costs in planning for the withdrawal of troops from Iraq. Rather than ship home millions of pieces of equipment from American bases abroad, the military is simply giving them away. Nearly two-and-a half million pieces of equipment, estimated at a cost of $250 million, have so far been given to the Iraqi government by the US military in the last year alone, reports the Huffington Post. As the DoD looks to empty out the bases that cost Americans billions of dollars toward erecting during the last decade, everything from air conditioning units to Army Tanks are being handed over to the foreign government in order to avoid the costly bill of shipping those supplies back to the United States. "It's all sunk costs," retired Army Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton tells HuffPo. "It's money that we spent and we're not going to recoup." Meanwhile, as the US hands over millions, they are scraping their pockets in order to make ends meet domestically. Yet again, the government is being posed with a possible shutdown in the days ahead, lest lawmakers find a way to balance their ledgers. The United States spent over $2.4 billion on building posts in Iraq, reports the Congressional Research Service, and nearly $2 billion of that came from contracts with the US Army Corps of Engineers between 2004 and 2010, and more than half of those deals were inked in 2005 alone.
According to head of the Iranian Navy, Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari. "Like the arrogant powers that are present near our borders, we will also have a powerful presence close to American marine borders, Sayyari said on Tuesday, without giving specifics as to when such a deployment could happen, or the number or type of vessels to be used. For years the United States has patrolled a fleet of Navy warships off the Iranian coast in the Persian Gulf, something seen as threatening to Tehran. In last January, the Obama administration accelerated the deployment of military vessels off the Iranian coast and placed antimissile systems in at least four Arab countries neighboring Iran. Most notable is the US Navy's Fifth Fleet based in Bahrain, less than 160 miles off the Iranian coast, which directs operations in the Persian Gulf, Red Sea, and Arabian Sea and secures the Straits of Hormuz, through which 40percent of the world's seaborne oil passes. It is one of the largest military forces in the region, with over 40 vessels and close to 30,000 personnel. The Fifth Fleet consists of a Carrier Battle Group, which includes an aircraft carrier, two guided missile destroyers equipped for air warfare, a destroyer for submarine warfare, a frigate, two attack submarines, and a combined ammunition, oiler and supply ship. The Fifth Fleet also docks an Amphibious Ready Group, which consists of multiple other vessels, including aircraft carriers, attack helicopters, a Marine Air-Ground Task Force, and more.
Pakistan seems to have been secretly lobbying in recent months for a bilateral defense pact with China. The efforts have been met with caution in Beijing, however, and officials say there is little hope for an immediate breakthrough. Diplomatic and military officials told "the Express Tribune" that Pakistan made overtures to China early this year, when its relationship with the US was weakened by several controversies. Islamabad used backdoor and regular diplomatic channels in an attempt to convince the Chinese leadership that the agreement was mutually beneficial, the officials said. "Our view is, and it is also shared by authorities in Beijing to an extent, that this will send a strong signal to the world that Pakistan is not alone - an emerging world power is standing behind it," an official said. He added that Pakistan formally raised the issue during a visit by Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani to China early this year, immediately after the killing of al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden by US commandos. "He put forward Pakistan's desire formally," said an official who was privy to the development, but requested that his name not be mentioned, due to the sensitivity of the issue. However, the Chinese leadership, officials say, advised Pakistan not to push for an agreement that could put Islamabad and Beijing in trouble with both Washington and Delhi. A spokesman for the foreign ministry refused to either confirm or deny that Pakistan was seeking a formal pact with China, though both countries cooperate extensively in defense production and civil nuclear technology.
On Friday night, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu once again proved himself to be an excellent elucidator, this time in the service of the Palestinians: He demonstrated to the world, better than even Mahmoud Abbas, why they had no recourse but to appeal to the United Nations. If there is one clear take-home message from his Hezekiah and Isaiah speech, it is this "The Palestinians (and the world) can no longer expect anything from Israel. NOTHING. Netanyahu was particularly persuasive when he explained that a Palestinian state would endanger Israel - narrow waist, just hundreds of meters from Israeli cities, thousand's of rockets - one giant blah-blah that willfully ignores the possibility of peace. A Palestinian state, perhaps, but absolutely not in our time, and not in our school of thought. Our school of thought seemed especially deluded Friday night. Every decent Israeli must be ashamed of their prime minister, who stands before the world and tries to sell it the same old shopworn, even rotten goods that are long past their expiration date, expounding on ancient, irrelevant chapters of history, and attempting to market cheap sentimentality, like a beggar who exposes his wounds, both real and imaginary, to passersby, and the beggar is in fact a regional power. Netanyahu, peddler of emotions, did not shrink from or forget anything, save reality. Abraham the patriarch, Hezekiah, Isaiah, pogroms, the "Holocaust, 9/11, the children, the grandchildren and, of course , Gilad Shalit, all fodder for the tear wringer that assuredly didn't bring forth a single tear anywhere on the planet, with the possible exception of a few Jewish nursing homes in Boca Raton, Florida. There, perhaps, people were still moved by this "kitschy death speech".
Ultimately, internet control is part and parcel of the technocracy (http://www.vimeo.com/28247826) movement. This movement seeks total scientific control of our lives via technological means: Few people realize that Wikileaks is actually a pawn in the global chess game designed to advance total control by "the technocracy." This technocracy promotes the idea that democracy was a sham, and that scientists and engineers working for the Illuminati bankers should take over the reins of government. The "modus operandi" is the Hegelian Dialectic. You may find it in practically every event unfolding in our lives: First, they put their plan on paper. Subsequently, they stage the necessary problem and blame it on someone else. Third, they readily provide the solution. In the Wikileaks case, their goal is total internet control. Thus they need a "false flag" attack to serve as a pretext for a crackdown. Given there are really no terrorists, or very few with the capability to carry this out, they need to do it themselves, and blame it on so-called terrorist patsies such as Wikileaks. Finally, they declare that too much damage has been done to infrastructure and national security via the leaking of documents, and that a Cybersecurity Act should be passed to establish total control over the over the internet electronic highway, something which they have already accomplished in our physical world via the "Patriot Act."
The Washington-led decision by NATO to bomb Gaddafi's Libya into submission, at an estimated cost to US taxpayers of at least $1 billion, has nothing to do with what the Obama Administration claims is a mission "to protect innocent civilians." In reality, it is part of a larger strategic assault by NATO and the Pentagon to control China's economic Achilles heel, meaning China's strategic dependence on large volumes of imported crude oil and gas. Today China is the world's second largest importer of oil, after the United States, and the gap is rapidly closing. With all of the wars the United States is involved in, our massive military complex needs oil, oil, and even more oil, to fill the needs of our tanks, planes, and transport vehicles! If we take a careful look at the map of Africa, and look our new "Pentagon Africa Command" (AFRICOM), the pattern which emerges is a careful strategy of controlling one of China's most strategically important oil and raw materials source: NATO's Libya campaign was, and is all about oil, but not about simply controlling Libyan high-grade crude, because the USA is nervous about reliable supplies. It is rather about controlling China's free access to long-term oil imports from Africa and the Middle East, in other words, controlling China itself.
It is curious that the American Right, which waxes nostalgic for the happier days of the 1950's when the United States was "supposedly" more moral and more united, ignores one of the central reasons behind that middle-class era: Very High Taxes on the Rich Granted, some on the "Right" may love the Fifties because it was a time of racial segregation and second-class status for women, but what arguably made the era work was the fact that the US tax structure "disincentivi -vized" greed by ensuring that excess wealth was mostly recycled back into the Treasury for use in building the nation and supporting research and development. During Dwight Eisenhower's presidency, the top marginal tax rate, what the richest Americans paid on their top tranche of income, was about 90 percent. In the 1960's, under John F. Kennedy, that was lowered to around 70 percent, but that rate still meant the rich had a limited incentive to be greedy, since they would not get to keep most of their extra money. All that changed with Ronald Reagan's presidency, and his slashing of the top marginal tax rate by more than half, before it was adjusted upward slightly, late in Reagan's years and then during Bill Clinton's presidency, before being reduced again to 35 percent under George W. Bush.
Deep in the belly of the beast, among the financial district's skyscrapers, next to derivatives traders in business suits and Rolex watches, you will find a one-block large democratic society, governed by consensus, whose features include free food, free professional childcare, an arts and culture area, medical and legal teams, a media center, constant music, a library and a stand with refreshments for the many police stationed to supervise the area. This is the one-week-old occupation of Wall Street, located at Liberty Plaza Park. A group of protesters from the camp ventured outside the park and marched on Union Square Saturday morning, and around 100 of them were arrested. Police sprayed peaceful protestors in the face with pepper spray, threw them on the ground and assaulted them with elbows, dragged a woman around by the hair, juped over barricades to grab and rough up young people, and, when all was said and done, laughed to themselves triumphantly. This is exactly the sort of violence and brutality American authorities routinely condemn when perpetrated against non-violent civilians demonstrating for democracy in Middle-Eastern dictatorships, even as they employ horrifying cruelty right here. Filmmaker Marisa Holmes was recently in Egypt, documenting the revolutionary movement there in its attempt to transform the ouster of Hosni Mubarak into a democratic society. Inspired by the movement there, she became involved with the group organizing the Wall Street occupation!
Amid the enthusiastic applause in New York, and the celebrations in Ramallah, it was easy to believe - if only for a minute - that after decades of obstruction by Israel and the United States , a Palestinian state might finally be pulled out of the United Nations hat. Will the world's conscience be midwife to a new era ending Israel's occupation of the Palestinians? It seems not. The Palestinian application, handed to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon last week, has now disappeared from view, for weeks, it seems, while the United States and Israel devise a face-saving formula to kill it in the Security Council. Behind the scenes, the pair are strong-arming the Council's members to block Palestinian statehood without the need for the US to cast its threatened veto. Whether or not President Barack Obama wields the knife with his own hand, no one is under the illusion that Washington and Israel are responsible for the formal demise of the peace process. In revealing to the world its hypocrisy on the Middle East, the US has ensured both that the Arab publics are infuriated and that the Palestinians will jump ship on the two-state solution. But there was one significant victory at the UN for Mahmoud Abbas, the head of the Palestinian Authority,even if it was not the one he sought. He will not achieve statehood for his people at the world body, but he has fatally discredited the US as the arbiter of a Middle East peace.
After Georgia was forced by the United States Supreme Court to abandon its scheme to deny black people the right to an undiluted vote and representation, Leroy Johnson became the first Black person elected to the Georgia State Senate since Reconstruction. The year was 1962. During his tenure, Johnson used his considerable influence inside the body to become the Senate's Chair of the Judiciary Committee. From this position,he was able to bottle-up legislation that was bad for the State of Georgia, especially its Black residents. Outside and inside the State Senate, Leroy Johnson practiced the art of leadership and engaged in the fight for justice. He produced solid results for a people who were hungry for justice. Who among our elected officials today exercises the art of leadership in an engaged struggle for justice? Sadly,the numbers are way too small. It is more expedient to exchange silence for merely being there, in the end exercising no leadership at all, and becoming a spectator to power, in abandonment of those who need the effective use of power the most. The art of struggle has veritably been abandoned for merely occupying a seat at a table, when the purpose of the struggle for the seat at the table was to empower the struggle for justice.
There hasn't been an organized, explicitly class-based violence in this country for generations, so what, exactly does "class warfare" really mean? Is it just an empty political catch-phrase? The American Right has decided that returning the tax paid by the wealthiest Americans from what it was during the Bush years, which incidentally featured the slowest job growth under any president in our history, at 0.45 percent per year, to what they forked over during the Clinton years, when job growth averaged 1.6 percent per year, is the epitome of class warfare. Sure, it would leave top earners with a tax rate 10 percentage points below what they were paying after Ronald Reagan's tax cuts, but that's the conservative definition of "eating the rich" these days. I recently offered a less Orwellian definition, arguing that real class warfare is when those who have already achieved a good deal of prosperity pull the ladder up behind them by attacking the very things that once allowed working people to move up and join the ranks of the middle class. But there is another way of looking at class war: Habitually vilifying the unfortunate, claiming that their plight is a manifestation of some personal flaw or cultural deficiency. Conservatives wage this form of class warfare virtually every day, consigning millions of people who are down on their luck to some subhuman underclass.
Deep in the belly of the beast,among the financial district's skyscrapers, next to derivative traders in business suits and Rolex watches, you will find a one-block large democratic society, governed by concensus, whose features include free food, free professional childcare, an arts and culture area, medical and legal teams, a media center, constant music, a library and a stand with refresh --ments for the many police stationed to supervise the area. This is the one-week-old occupation of Wall Street, located at Liberty Plaza Park. A group of protestors from the camp ventured outside the park and marched on Union Square Saturday morning, and around 100 of them were arrested. Police sprayed peaceful protesters in the face with pepper spray, threw them on the ground, and assaulted them with elbows, dragged a woman around by the hair, jumped over barricades to grab and rough up people, and when all was said and done, laughed to themselves triumphantly. This is exactly the sort of violence and brutality American authorities routinely condemn when perpetrated against non-violent civilians demonstrating for democracy in Middle Eastern dictatorships, even as they employ horrifying cruelty right here.
America is getting poorer: The US government has just released a bunch of new statistics about poverty in America, and once again this year the news is NOT good! According to a special report from the US Census Bureau, 46.2 million Americans are now living in poverty. The number of those living poverty in America has grown by 2.6 million in just the last 12 months, and that is the largest increase that we have ever seen since the US government began calculating poverty figures back in 1959. Not only that, median household income has also fallen once again. In case you are keeping track, that makes three years in a row. According to the US Census Bureau, median household income in the United States dropped 2.3% in 2010, after accounting for inflation. Overall, median household income in the United States has declined by a total of 6.8% once you account for inflation since December 2007. So should we be excited that our incomes are going down, and that a record number of Americans slipped into poverty last year? Should we be thrilled that the economic pie is shrinking, and that our debt levels are exploding? All of those who claimed that the US economy was recovering, and that everything was just fine, like Lucy Ricardo, have some "splainin" to do!
A leak from a shallow water crude oil pipeline in the Main Pass Area of the Gulf of Mexico has led Chevron to shut down its offshore Louisiana Main Pass pipeline network, the company said on Tuesday. Chevron has shut its Cypress line. About 15,ooo barrels per day of crude oil production was shut, due to the pipeline leak, though it will resume partial production within 24 hours. Chevron did not reply to several requests for additional information about the leak and its operations in the Main Pass Area. Carol Fagot, a spokeswoman at the Federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE), said the agency was "aware of the report and looking into it," without offering further details. Both the US Coast Guard and the Louisiana Oil Spill Coordinator's Office said they had not been informed of a leak off the coast. Chevron has two offshore platforms in the Main Pass 299 block, according to the company's website. The site is located in shallow waters about 40 miles east of Venice, Louisiana, and has produced heavy oil, natural gas and sulfur, according to government records. Chevron said the leak was from a 10-inch riser pipeline in Main Pass Block 299. Riser pipelines normally carry crude from the seabed to production platforms.
On September 20, London Guardian writer Chris McGreal headlined, "Palestinian statehood: plan emerges to avoid UN showdown," saying: "Washington-led international efforts to forestall a showdown in the UN Security Council over the declaration of a Palestinian state are solidifying around a plan for Abbas to submit a request for recognition but put on hold while a new round of peace talks is launched." The plan also calls for establishing a timeline for creating a Palestinian state. In addition, it'll let Abbas go home, saying he got something, even with nothing to show for it. "However, diplomats warned that a number of issues remain unresolved, including a Palestinian demand that any deal includes halting settlement construction. On September 22, Netanyahu again refused, saying: "I did something that no previous government did. I actually froze any construction for ten months, waited nine month and one week, then Palestinians came and said, well, keep on freezing." In fact, construction never stopped. Israel's land grab continued. In many West Bank settlements, building proceeded apace. Dozens of construction sites remained active. Moreover, Netanyahu declared a moratorium, not a freeze. Peace Now.org assessed what went on eight months into it. It found construction ongoing for 600 more housing units in 60 settlements, and at least 492 others announced in direct violation of Netanyahu's pledge.
A Chinese state-run newspaper on Friday warned of a spike in tensions in the Middle East, if the United States vetoed the Palestinian bid for membership of the United Nations next week. As peace talks with Israel stall, Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas is expected to formally submit a request for UN membership next Friday, despite strong objections from Washington that the move would be "counter-productive". "If the US chooses to fly in the face of world opinion and block the Palestine UN bid next week, not only will Israel become more isolated, but tensions in the region will be heightened even more," said the China Daily. "The majority of the international community deems an independent state as the inalienable right of the Palestinians," the English-language daily said in an editorial, echoing Beijing's official position on the issue. The planned request by the Palestinians for UN membership comes almost a year after direct peace talks with Israel ran aground due to a dispute over Israel's construction of settlements on occupied Palestinian land. But the US has threatened to veto the move if it is made within the UN Security Council, saying it would harm prospects for peace talks and that a Palestinian state can only result from negotiations with Israel. Israel is also opposed to the move, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said he too will address the UN next Friday to set out his country's objections. Envoys from the United States and the European Union are currently holding talks with Palestinian and Israeli leaders in an effort to get them back into direct peace talks.
In a major breakthrough engineered by the great man of change and hope, and who has blocked access to all documents that tell us anything about him, Israeli Vice President for American Affairs (IVPAA), Barrack Hussein Obama, the Israeli Vice President for Palestinian Affairs, Mahmoud Abbas, has made a major compromise. In a press conference in Herzeliyya, Abbas has offered Netanyahu a huge concession. Both the House and Senate in the US are ready to vote on it as soon as Netanyahu gives the go ahead, the bill having been drafted by AIPAC, as usual. Peace is just busting out all over. You know, Abbas may be on to something. All you investigative journalists who read this blog, and you FBI guys too, want to pay attention to whatever is going on in the East Ramapo Central School District. It's quite a tangled web, but it looks as though a bunch of Orthodox Jews, in other words, fundamentalist extremists like the ones who are staling land from Palestinians left, right and center, are pulling a West Bank on a bunch of poor blacks and Latinos. Now I know that everyone is all worried about Shari'ah law, and that we are all mourning for the boring, dull and apparently quite smart Juan Williams, who got fired from a boring, dull and apparently quite smart Juan Williams, who got fired from a boring, dull and quite smart network, so he can work full time for people who do things for which people like Julius Streicher were hanged at Nuremberg. I know you are just weeping for Juan and all that shit.