An investigation by the Bureau’s CIA Torture project.

REVEALED: The boom and bust of the CIA’s secret torture sites

In spring 2003 an unnamed official at CIA headquarters in Langley sat down to compose a memo. It was 18 months after George W Bush had declared war on terror. “We cannot have enough blacksite hosts,” the official wrote. The reference was to one of the most closely guarded secrets of that war – the countries that had agreed to host the CIA’s covert prison sites.

Between 2002 and 2008, at least 119 people disappeared into a worldwide detention network run by the CIA and facilitated by its foreign partners.

A mammoth investigation by the US Senate’s intelligence committee finally identified these 119 prisoners in December 2014. But its report was heavily censored, and the names of countries collaborating with the CIA in its detention and interrogation operations were removed, along with key dates, numbers, names and much other material.

In nine months of research, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism and The Rendition Project have unpicked these redactions to piece together the hidden history of the CIA’s secret sites.

Although many published accounts of individual journeys through the black site network exist, this is the first comprehensive portrayal of the system’s inner dynamics from beginning to end.

Read the full report here.

“Palestinian Child Bleeds To Death While Israeli Police & Civilians Watch, Shouting Insults”

“Die, you son of a whore!! Die!!” shouted Israeli men at a seriously wounded Palestinian child, who was left to die while police stood around him doing nothing. One of the officers repeatedly pushed the boy down with his foot, whenever he tried to sit up.

manasra_ahmad13

“Die, you son of a whore!! Die!!” shouted Israeli men at a seriously wounded Palestinian child, who was left to die while police stood around him doing nothing. One of the officers repeatedly pushed the boy down with his foot, whenever he tried to sit up.

While the child was bleeding to death, Israelis surrounded him, shouting at him in a mix of Arabic and Hebrew, “Die, you son of a whore!”, “Die, you son of the biggest whore!”, and telling the police to “Do him a favor, and shoot him in the head!”

The officers did not shoot him, but left him bleeding with head injuries, broken legs and other serious injuries on the ground. The boy was able to raise his head a few times, but the police officers kicked him back down until he bled to death.

The slain Palestinian child has been identified as Hasan Khaled Manasra, 15 years of age, while his cousin Ahmad Saleh Manasra, 13, suffered a serious injury. They are both from Beit Hanina, in Jerusalem.

The incident took place near Pisgat Zeev Israeli settlement, in occupied Jerusalem. The police claimed that the boys stabbed two settlers, wounding them.

A settler who chased the boys with his car also rammed Ahmad. But the police presented no evidence to connect the two children with the crime that they claimed the boys committed.

The following are some of the insults and curses hurled at the seriously wounded child before he died (warning: strong language):

“Die you fucker, die you son of a whore, die you son of a bitch…”
“Shoot him in the head, this son of a bitch”
“Die you son of a whore”
“Die you son of a bitch”
“Shoot him in the head, shoot him in the head!”
“Shoot him in the head, do him a favor”

The police eventually approached the Israelis, including the one who apparently was filming, and “asked them not to approach.”

Palestinian Presidency spokesperson, Nabil Abu Rodeina, said the execution of the child is an ugly Israeli crime committed by Israel in violation of every legal and humanitarian law, and demanded the apprehension of those responsible for his death.

He added that “If Israel continues its policies and violations, the entire region will reach a situation that cannot be contained, and everybody will pay a high price for that.”

Since October 1st, when two Israelis were killed in a ‘lone wolf’ attack by a Palestinian in Jerusalem, 26 Palestinians have been killed, including a pregnant woman and her two-year old child killed in an Israeli bombing on Sunday morning. Over 1200 Palestinians have been injured, many of them hit by live ammunition fired by Israeli troops at Palestinian demonstrators armed only with stones.

During that time period, no Israelis have been killed beyond the two who died in the October 1st attack, but six have been wounded in alleged attacks by Palestinians. No Palestinian faction has claimed responsibility for any attack, and it appears that the Palestinians who wounded Israelis were acting on their own.

In addition, Israeli authorities have been revealed on several occasions to have lied about the Palestinians they have killed – claiming falsely that the Palestinians had been attempting to stab or attack Israelis, but eyewitness and video evidence disproved this claim in a number of cases.

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Palestinians will never have a state and will be ruled by Israel — says Israeli minister

Eli Ben-Dahan, deputy defense minister, photo by Yossi Zamir

Israel’s Deputy Defense Minister Eli Ben-Dahan said yesterday: “Palestinians have to understand they won’t have a state & Israel will rule over them.”

The report is in Hebrew from Udi Segal of Israeli Channel 10, as translated by David Sheen on Facebook and Emily Hauser. 

Ben-Dahan referred to Palestinians as animals in 2013, according to the Times of Israel:

“To me, they are like animals, they aren’t human.”

Ben Dahan told Maariv that homosexual Jews were superior [to]gentiles — gay or straight.

“A Jew always has a much higher soul than a gentile, even if he is a homosexual,” he said.

Video: Israeli forces open fire on Palestinian demonstrators in Gaza killing seven

As Israel intensifies violence and uncoordinated multiple daily attacks are carried out by Palestinians, youth in Gaza have begun marching to the borders to express solidarity and their frustration.

Yesterday, Israeli soldiers clad in full combat gear shot protestors and occasionally fired tear gas canisters into the crowd of an estimated 1,000 young men and boys, killing seven and injuring 145 along Gaza’s border area. Layers of barbed wire and open space separated the soldiers from the protestors who threw rocks they found on the ground and molotov cocktails. Additional military installations and dirt mounds protected Israeli snipers as they picked off one protestor after the next with Ruger .22 rifles, hitting them in the head, chest, abdomen and limbs. Soldiers also fired explosive dum-dum rounds according to medical sources in Gaza. At no point did the protestors present any threat to the heavily armed soldiers. At least one protestor managed to plant a flag on the barbed wire.

Today, Israeli forces shot dead two children aged 13 and 15 as protests continue. Attacks were again reported at the Nahal Oz crossing east of Gaza City, east of Khan Younis, in the northern area of Beit Hanoun and at the Erez border crossing. THe demonstrations today reportedly drew smaller numbers than yesterday and Hamas security forces prevented some protestors from reaching the border area.

Israeli defense minister Moshe Ya’alon blamed his military’s killing of protestors on Hamas, saying that they didn’t prevent protestors from reaching the so-called “buffer zone,” a loosely interpreted three hundred meter stretch of agricultural land in the Gaza Strip from the border. He then threatened to escalate violence, referring to the 2014 massive assault on the Gaza Strip which killed more than 2,200 Palestinians, mostly civilians.

While Israeli officials claim to not want an escalation – the military refrained from customary bombing of Hamas training sites after one rocket launched from Gaza landed inside Israel overnight – its forces continue to escalate violence by killing Palestinian children and unarmed civilians.

Brzezinski’s “Retaliation” Agenda: Break Up Russia And Absorb It

By Brandon Turbeville

When the dark lord of the Anglo-American empire, Zbigniew Brzezinski, stated that the United States should retaliate against Russia as a result of the latter ruining the former’s credibility in the Middle East (which the U.S. needed no help in doing), the world got a glimpse into just how far the ruling elite is willing to take the world’s population in its quest for total hegemony.

After all, Brzezinski is no mere talking head or media mouthpiece. He is the architect of al-Qaeda and controller of much of the American geopolitical strategy. When he states that retaliation must be part of U.S. strategy, there is a very real possibility that it will be.

Indeed, in order to understand much of the U.S. geopolitical strategy at work today, it might serve us well to consult the work Brzezinski in his book The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives.

It should be remembered that it was in this very book that Brzezinski uttered the famous statement that “America is too democratic at home to be autocratic abroad. This limits the use of America’s power, especially its capacity for military intimidation. Never before has a populist democracy attained international supremacy. But the pursuit of power is not a goal that commands popular passion, except in conditions of a sudden threat or challenge to the public’s sense of domestic well-being.”[1]

The book, written in 1997, seemed to lament the fact that the public would not support such blatant imperialism unless they truly viewed the crusade to be in their own immediate self-interest. Only fours year later, the public would receive such a “sudden threat or challenge” to their “sense of domestic well-being” in theform of the 9/11 attacks.

In regards to Russia, Brzezinski clearly laid out his desire to see a fractured Russia, a nation that was drastically smaller in size and much weaker in terms of its governmental structure. In other words, a Russia incapable of opposing Anglo-American hegemony.

Brzezinski wrote,

Given the enormous size and diversity of the country, a decentralized political system, based on the free market, would be more likely to unleash the creative potential of both the Russian people and the country’s vast natural resources. In turn, such a more decentralized Russia would be less susceptible to imperial mobilization.[2]

Brzezinski makes it clear that the strategy towards Russia is one that involves the breakup of the country into three parts, loosely confederated, partially beholden to NATO-dominated Europe, and blended with the other powers of Asia.

He writes,

A loosely confederated Russia—composed of a European Russia, a Siberian Republic, and a Far Eastern Republic—would also find it easier to cultivate closer economic relations with Europe, with the new states of Central Asia, and with the Orient, which would thereby accelerate Russia’s own development. Each of the three confederated entities would also be more able to tap local creative potential, stifled for centuries by Moscow’s heavy bureaucratic hand.[3]

Likewise, Brzezinski sees China and the greater Asian region uniting under a loosely confederal system, effectively forming the world into a realm of what is, essentially, three main trading blocks, full of impotent states and third world fiefdoms.[4]

Clearly, Russia is not going to allow itself to be destroyed and broken up into three parts for the benefit of the hegemony of world oligarchs. Yet Brzezinski’s desire are clearly the goals of the ruling elite and a plan to make them a reality is already in motion.

In order to accomplish such a task, it would require an enormous battle politically, economically, and militarily. Unfortunately for the world, it appears the ruling elite is prepared to do just that.

[1] Brzezinski, Zbigniew. The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives. Basic Books. 1997. Pp. 40-41
[2] Brzezinski, Zbigniew. The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives. Basic Books. 1997. Pp. 202.
[3] Brzezinski, Zbigniew. The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives. Basic Books. 1997. Pp. 202-203.
[4] Brzezinski, Zbigniew. The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy And Its Geostrategic Imperatives. Basic Books. 1997.

How the Wealthy Rob Our Most Productive People

Lives are being trashed by klepto-remuneration: theft through excess rewards to rapacious bosses.

There is an inverse relationship between utility and reward. The most lucrative, prestigious jobs tend to cause the greatest harm. The most useful workers tend to be paid least and treated worst.

I was reminded of this while listening last week to a care worker describing her job. Carole’s company gives her a rota of, er, three half-hour visits an hour. It takes no account of the time required to travel between jobs, and doesn’t pay her for it either, which means she makes less than the minimum wage. During the few minutes she spends with a client, she may have to get them out of bed, help them on the toilet, wash them, dress them, make breakfast and give them their medicines. If she ever gets a break, she told the BBC radio programme You and Yours, she spends it with her clients. For some, she is the only person they see all day.

Is there more difficult or worthwhile employment? Yet she is paid in criticism and insults as well as pennies. She is shouted at by family members for being late and not spending enough time with each client, then upbraided by the company because of the complaints it receives. Her profession is assailed in the media as the problems created by the corporate model are blamed on the workers. “I love going to people; I love helping them, but the constant criticism is depressing,” she says. “It’s like always being in the wrong.”

Her experience is unexceptional. A report by the Resolution Foundationreveals that two-thirds of frontline care workers receive less than the living wage. Ten percent, like Carole, are illegally paid less than the minimum wage. This abuse is not confined to the UK: in the US, 27% of care workers who make home visits are paid less than the legal minimum.

Let’s imagine the lives of those who own or run the company. We have to imagine it because, for good reasons, neither the care worker’s real name nor the company she works for were revealed. The more costs and corners they cut, the more profitable their business will be. In other words, the less they care, the better they will do. The perfect chief executive, from the point of view of shareholders, is a fully fledged sociopath.

Such people will soon become very rich. They will be praised by the government as wealth creators. If they donate enough money to party funds,they have a high chance of becoming peers of the realm. Gushing profiles in the press will commend their entrepreneurial chutzpah and flair.

They’ll acquire a wide investment portfolio, perhaps including a few properties, so that – even if they cease to do anything resembling work – they can continue living off the labour of people such as Carole as she struggles to pay extortionate rents. Their descendants, perhaps for many generations, need never take a job of the kind she does.

Care workers function as a human loom, shuttling from one home to another, stitching the social fabric back together while many of their employers and shareholders, and government ministers, slash blindly at the cloth, downsizing, outsourcing and deregulating in the cause of profit.

It doesn’t matter how many times the myth of meritocracy is debunked. It keeps re-emerging, as you can see in the current election campaign. How else, after all, can the government justify stupendous inequality?

One of the most painful lessons a young adult learns is that the wrong traits are rewarded. We celebrate originality and courage, but those who rise to the top are often conformists and sycophants. We are taught that cheats never prosper, yet the country is run by spivs. A study testing British senior managers and chief executives found that on certain indicators of psychopathy their scores exceeded those of patients diagnosed with psychopathic personality disorders in the Broadmoor special hospital.

If you possess the one indispensable skill – battering and blustering your way to the top – incompetence in other areas is no impediment. The former Hewlett-Packard chief executive Carly Fiorina features prominently on lists of the worst US bosses: quite an achievement when you consider the competition. She fired 30,000 workers in the name of efficiency yet oversaw a halving of the company’s stock price. Morale and communication became so bad that she was booed at company meetings. She was forced out, with a $42m severance package. Where is she now? About to launch her campaign as presidential candidate for the Republican party, where, apparently, she is considered a serious contender. It’s the Mitt Romney story all over again.

At university I watched in horror as the grand plans of my ambitious friends dissolved. It took them about a minute, on walking into the corporate recruitment fair, to see that the careers they had pictured – working for Oxfam, becoming a photographer, defending the living world – paid about one fiftieth of what they might earn in the City. They all swore they would leave to follow their dreams after two or three years of making money; none did. They soon adjusted their morality to their circumstances. One, a firebrand who wanted to nationalise the banks and overthrow capitalism, plunged first into banking, then into politics. Claire Perry now sits on the frontbench of the Conservative party.Flinch once, at the beginning of your career, and they will have you for life. The world is wrecked by clever young people making apparently sensible choices.

The inverse relationship doesn’t always hold. There are plenty of useless, badly paid jobs, and a few useful, well-paid jobs. But surgeons and film directors are greatly outnumbered by corporate lawyers, lobbyists, advertisers, management consultants, financiers and parasitic bosses consuming the utility their workers provide. As the pay gap widens – chief executives in the UK took 60 times as much as the average worker in the 1990s and 180 times as much today – the uselessness ratio is going through the roof I propose a name for this phenomenon: klepto-remuneration.

There is no end to this theft except robust government intervention: a redistribution of wages through maximum ratios and enhanced taxation. But this won’t happen until we challenge the infrastructure of justification, built so carefully by politicians and the press. Our lives are damaged not by the undeserving poor but by the undeserving rich.

American Police Killed More People in March (111) Than the Entire UK Police Have Killed Since 1900

A total of 111 people were killed by police in the United States in March of 2015. Since 1900, in the entire United Kingdom, 52 people have been killed by police.

Yeah. Those numbers are real.A total of 111 people were killed by police in the United States in March of 2015. Since 1900, in the entire United Kingdom, 52 people have been killed by police.

Don’t bother adjusting for population differences, or poverty, or mental illness, or anything else. The sheer fact that American police kill TWICE as many people per month as police have killed in the modern history of the United Kingdom is sick, preposterous, and alarming.

In March:

Police beat Phillip White to death in New Jersey. He was unarmed.

Police shot and killed Meagan Hockaday, a 26-year-old mother of three.

Police shot and killed Nicholas Thomas, an unarmed man on his job at Goodyear in metro Atlanta.

Police shot and killed Anthony Hill, an unarmed war veteran fighting through mental illness, in metro Atlanta.

I could tell 107 more of those stories.

This has to end.