Friday, September 30, 2011

US Airstrike Kills 21 in Somalia

US drone strike kills 21 in Somalia

Fri Sep 30, 2011 2:38PM GMT

Another unauthorized US drone strike has left at least 21 people dead in southern Somalia, while injuring scores of others ,Press TV reports.

On Friday, a Somali government official confirmed that the US drone had killed at least 21 fighters and injured many more late Thursday night, forcing many to flee the Qooqani and Taabto districts.

This is as recent reports said that a US spy drone crashed near the port city of Kismayo.

The US has recently stepped up its drone operations in the famine-stricken country.

Somalia is the sixth country where US military has engaged in unauthorized aerial bombing campaigns through the use of its remote-controlled aircraft.

The United States has also deployed its so-called drones for aerial attacks in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Iraq, and Yemen.

Washington claims the airstrikes target militants, though most of such attacks have mostly resulted in civilian casualties.

US Majority Says Present Regime 'Worse Than Predecessor'

'Obama doing worse than predecessor'

Fri Sep 30, 2011 5:14PM GMT

52 percent of respondents of a new Gallup poll believe that US President Barack Obama does worse than his Republican predecessor.
Half of Americans believe the US President Barack Obama and the US Congress are doing worse than their predecessors, results of a new poll show.

According to a new Gallup Poll released on Friday, two-thirds of Americans believe President Obama and Congress are doing a poor job overall.

When asked to compare the performance of the current incumbents to past presidents and congresses, a slim majority, 52 percent, say the current president and congress are doing a worse job than their predecessors.

However, only 30 percent of the respondents say Obama and Congress are doing a good job in dealing with the most important problems facing the United States.

Gallup reports the findings of this latest poll fits in with the broader theme of relatively low presidential approval ratings, historically low congressional approval ratings, and low levels of trust in government.

Most of the rest, 33 percent, say they are doing about the same, with 13 percent saying better.

Republicans overwhelmingly say the current government is doing a worse job than those before it, and independents (59 percent) agree. Democrats are divided in their views.

Obama Claims Responsibility for Targeted Assassinations of Two American Muslims in Yemen,0,7979336.story

Obama: Death of Awlaki is 'major blow' to Al Qaeda

By Christi Parsons
10:06 AM PDT, September 30, 2011

President Obama credited American intelligence operations and cooperation with the Yemeni government for the death of key Al Qaeda figure Anwar Awlaki on Friday, calling it a "major blow" to the terrorism network's most active operational affiliate and a sign of things to come.

Obama said the U.S. will be "resolute in its commitment" to wipe out Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, of which Awlaki was a leader.

"AQAP remains a dangerous, though weakened terrorist organization," Obama said. "Make no mistake: This is further proof that Al Qaeda will find no safe haven anywhere in the world."

U.S. officials consider Awlaki's death a significant victory for the administration, given the Muslim cleric's connection to several plots on U.S. soil and around the globe.

U.S. counter-terrorism operations have killed at least 20 Al Qaeda leaders in the field, but Awlaki's death raised new concerns for some Obama critics because the target was an American citizen.

Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) on Friday criticized Obama for assassinating Awlaki, saying he should have been tried in a U.S. court like domestic terrorist Timothy McVeigh.

"If the American people accept this blindly and casually, that we now have an accepted practice of the president assassinating people who he thinks are bad guys, I think it's sad," Paul told reporters in Manchester, N.H. He said his disagreement arises largely from the fact that Awlaki holds dual American and Yemeni citizenship and authorities have never been "specific" about his crime.

In a prelude to his remarks at a ceremony marking the departure of Adm. Michael G. Mullen as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Obama listed several of the plots in which officials say Awlaki was involved.

The president did not explicitly refer to those plots as acts of war, though that is the U.S. government's justification for strikes against enemy combatants in the field.

U.S. officials say that in his position as chief of external operations for Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, Awlaki played a "significant operational role" in the attempted Christmas Day attack on a U.S. airliner two years ago, and also helped oversee the plot to blow up a cargo plane bound for Chicago last October.

The man accused of attacking military personnel at Ft. Hood used to attend Awlaki's sermons in Virginia and corresponded with him via email, and the man who pleaded guilty to the 2010 Times Square bombing attempt told interrogators he was inspired by Awlaki.

"He directed attempts to murder innocent Americans," Obama said of Awlaki. "He repeatedly called on individuals in the U.S. and around the globe to kill innocent men, women and children."

His death "marks a significant milestone" in the effort to disable Al Qaeda, Obama said.

Two U.S.-Born Terrorists Killed in CIA-Led Drone Strike

By Jennifer Griffin
Published September 30, 2011

Senior Al Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki and another America-born militant were killed in Yemen early Friday morning by a CIA-led U.S. drone strike, marking the highest-profile takedown of terror leaders since the raid on Usama bin Laden's compound.

Fox News has learned that two Predator drones hovering above al-Awlaki's convoy fired the Hellfire missiles which killed the terror leader. According to a senior U.S. official, the operation was carried out by Joint Special Operations Command, under the direction of the CIA.

President Obama called the strike a major "milestone" in the fight against Al Qaeda and its affiliates.

"The death of Awlaki is a major blow to Al Qaeda's most active operational affiliate," Obama said Friday. "He took the lead in planning and directing efforts to murder innocent Americans ... and he repeatedly called on individuals in the United States and around the globe to kill innocent men, women and children to advance a murderous agenda."

He said the strike is "further proof that Al Qaeda and its affiliates will find no safe haven anywhere in the world."

Al-Awlaki was a U.S.-born Islamic militant cleric who became a prominent figure with Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the network's most active branch. He was involved in several terror plots in the United States in recent years, using his fluent English and Internet savvy to draw recruits to carry out attacks. President Obama signed an order in early 2010 making him the first American to be placed on the "kill or capture" list.

The Yemeni government and Defense Ministry announced al-Awlaki's death, without giving details. But American sources confirmed the CIA and U.S. military were behind the strike on al-Awlaki, whom one official described as a "big fish."

The strike hit a vehicle with three or four suspected Al Qaeda members inside, in addition to al-Awlaki. According to a U.S. senior official, the other American militant killed in the strike was Samir Khan, the co-editor of an English-language Al Qaeda web magazine called "Inspire."

Khan, in his 20s, was an American of Pakistani heritage from North Carolina. His magazine promoted attacks against U.S. targets, even running articles on how to put together explosives. In one issue, Khan wrote that he had moved to Yemen and joined Al Qaeda's fighters, pledging to "wage jihad for the rest of our lives."

The strike comes after a heavy presence of U.S. drones was spotted in the skies over the region over the last couple weeks, one source told Fox News.

The strike underscores the expanding nature of the drone program, which has migrated beyond the borders of Pakistan into Yemen, Somalia and other countries.

Yemeni security officials and local tribal leaders also said al-Awlaki was killed in an air strike on his convoy that they believed was carried out by the Americans.

Al-Awlaki would be the most prominent Al Qaeda figure to be killed since bin Laden's death in a U.S. raid in Pakistan in May. In July, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said the Yemeni-American was a priority target alongside Ayman al-Zawahri, bin Laden's successor as the terror network's leader.

The 40-year-old al-Awlaki had been in the U.S. crosshairs since his killing was approved by President Obama in April 2010 -- making him the first American placed on the CIA "kill or capture" list. At least twice, airstrikes were called in on locations in Yemen where al-Awlaki was suspected of being, but he wasn't harmed. In May, U.S. forces were able to track his truck but were unable to take him out.

Al-Awlaki, born in New Mexico to Yemeni parents, was believed to be key in turning Al Qaeda's affiliate in Yemen into what American officials have called the most significant and immediate threat to the United States. The branch, led by a Yemeni militant named Nasser al-Wahishi, plotted several failed attacks on U.S. soil -- the botched Christmas 2009 attempt to blow up an American airliner heading to Detroit and a foiled 2010 attempt to send explosives to Chicago.

A former intelligence official said that with al-Awlaki gone, the branch "still retains a lot of capability."

But Richard Miniter, author of "Losing bin Laden," told Fox News that al-Awlaki's role will be "hard to replace."

"He understood American society very well. He understood American idioms and pop culture and how to appeal to Americans," he told Fox News. "It's very hard for them to replicate this."

Known as an eloquent preacher who spread English-language sermons on the Internet calling for "holy war" against the United States, al-Awlaki's role was to inspire and -- it is believed -- even directly recruit militants to carry out attacks.

He was not believed to be a key operational leader, but as a spokesman. His English skills gave him reach among second and third generation Muslims who may not speak Arabic.

Yemeni officials have said al-Awlaki had contacts with Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the accused would-be Christmas plane bomber, who was in Yemen in 2009. They say the believe al-Awlaki met with the 23-year-old Nigerian, along with other Al Qaeda leaders, in Al Qaeda strongholds in the country in the weeks before the failed bombing.

In New York, the Pakistani-American man who pleaded guilty to the May 2010 Times Square car bombing attempt told interrogators he was "inspired" by al-Awlaki after making contact over the Internet.

Al-Awlaki also exchanged up to 20 emails with U.S. Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, alleged killer of 13 people in the Nov. 5, 2009, rampage at Fort Hood. Hasan initiated the contacts, drawn by al-Awlaki's Internet sermons, and approached him for religious advice.

Al-Awlaki has said he didn't tell Hasan to carry out the shootings, but he later praised Hasan as a "hero" on his Web site for killing American soldiers who would be heading for Afghanistan or Iraq to fight Muslims. The cleric similarly said Abdulmutallab was his "student" but said he never told him to carry out the airline attack.

In a statement, the Yemeni government said al-Awlaki was "targeted and killed" 5 miles from the town of Khashef in the Province of al-Jawf. The town is located 87 miles east of the capital Sanaa.

The statement says the operation was launched on Friday around 9:55 a.m. It gave no other details.

The Yemeni Defense Ministry also reported the death, without elaborating, in a mobile phone SMS message.

Top U.S. counter terrorism adviser John Brennan says such cooperation with Yemen has improved since the political unrest there. Brennan said the Yemenis have been more willing to share information about the location of Al Qaeda targets, as a way to fight the Yemeni branch challenging them for power. Other U.S. officials say the Yemenis have also allowed the U.S. to fly more armed drone and aircraft missions over its territory than ever previously, trying to use U.S. military power to stay in power.

Fox News' Catherine Herridge and Mike Levine and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Read more:

Forecast Says 'Double-Dip Recession' Is Imminent

Forecast says double-dip recession is imminent

By Chris Isidore @CNNMoney
September 30, 2011: 10:23 AM ET

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- The U.S. economy is staring down another recession, according to a forecast from the Economic Cycle Research Institute.

"It's either just begun, or it's right in front of us," said Lakshman Achuthan, the managing director of ECRI. "But at this point that's a detail. The critical news is there's no turning back. We are going to have a new recession."

The ECRI produces widely-followed leading indicators which predict when the economy is moving between recession and expansion. Achuthan said all those indicators are now pointing to a new economic downturn in the immediate future.

His recession call puts him ahead of most other forecasters. A CNNMoney survey of economists this week pointed to a one-in-three chance of a new recession in the next six months. The most bearish predictions put the odds at 50-50.

Achuthan said it is still possible that the recession will be mild this time, lasting less than a year with relatively limited job losses. But he said if there are shocks to the system, such as another financial meltdown due to the European sovereign debt crisis, it could become a very serious and deep recession.

His call comes the day after the government's final report on second quarter gross domestic product, the broadest measure of the nation's economic health, showed weak growth of only 1.3% in the three months ending in June. Achuthan said he's confident that the recession either began in the third quarter, which ends today, or will begin in the fourth quarter.

The average American is already more bearish than most economists. A CNN/ORC International poll shows 90% of those polled believe current economic conditions are poor.

Update on the Imperialist War Against Libya and Africa

Update on the war against Libya and Africa

September 28th
Posted: 2011/09/29
From: Mathaba

Roundup of news from and other independent sources along with commentary by Dennis South

Rats are rats

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 00:41

Sabha, Ghadames, Ghat, Taha, Murzuk and other towns and oases, are under the control of the Jamahiriya.

The Tuareg published a communique in which they confirmed their full support for the Jamahiriya. They also said that they would take revenge on the rebels for the atrocities committed against peaceful Libyans.

The rats are preparing a tank assault on Bani Walid. Bani Walid is still being fiercely bombed by NATO, the white 'west' European, Canadian and United States armed forces, at the command of the governments of those countries, while their populations remain silent. In general, the number of mercenaries is reduced.

In Sirte, mercenaries broke into the port at night and now await the landing of NATO troops. Fighters in Tripoli are awaiting reinforcements from Tarragon.

Tunisian authorities released Dr Mahmoudi El-Baghdadi, the General Secretary of the General People's Conference of the Libyan Jamahiriya, who was arrested in Tunis.

The Jamahiriya is in talks with several countries, who said the following: You are holding [doing very well]. If you capture Tripoli, we will recognize the Jamahiriya government again. However, this is like saying that if all of Australia is under the control of the Australian people, but Canberra is seized by Korean terrorists supporting a small council of Australian convicts escaped from prison calling themselves "TNC", then we recognize the TNC and not the Australian people's government.

Russia has demanded the immediate convening of the Security Council. There are discussions about the UN sending the blue helmets--the "peace-keeping" missions. Everywhere the the blue helmets have gone, they have left hell, including rape. This fact is reported even in the mainstream press. The blue helmets are merely the so-called international army of the global zionist and banker elites, as a back up reserve to NATO.

The rebels continue to struggle for power, so the planned announcement of the formation of a government (by the rat-NATO-rebels) has again been delayed. The rebels claim to have found a large amount of uranium which can be used for the development of nuclear weapons. This is the mess that the West has created in North Africa, in addition to lots of Libyan weapons that have found their way all over North Africa.

China in Africa

China is risking a further and much deeper backlash in Africa depending on the positions it takes, the Tuareg people are on the ascendency as indomitable Africans along with Muammar Qaddafi. China is increasingly indistinguishable from the west. The $15 billion assets held in China are key, if these are released to other than the Jamahiriya or not may be the determining factor on future Sino-African relations.

News from Sirte

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 01:52

Western Front: Rat commander Mohammed Katib Nabus was eliminated after he took the place of his brother Ibrahim, who was killed last week. Rebels are running to the east after having taken heavy losses.

Information Bureau of the Libyan

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 02:09

Green revolutionary patriotic forces have liberated the city of Zawiya with General Khamis al-Qaddafi. This is good news for the Libyan resistance and the heroic and courageous people of Libya. The Libyan resistance continues and gathers strength.

Our brave men in Ghat, which is located in the south of Libya, had fought with rats in a heavy battle today. Many rats were killed, and the rest fled to 20 km outside of the city.

Rebels beaten back by Jamahiriya fighters at Sirte

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 12:12

Rebels were again beaten back by Jamahiriya forces at Sirte. Only yesterday they were shouting about the alleged capture of the port. But today China Radio International echoed western media that "the rebels, at the request of NATO, have suspended their assault on Sirte." This follows a well established pattern, which has always translated to, "The rebels have been defeated again."

After the NATO bombing of the coast and the port from the sea, the rebels landed. In the port they started to get into the thick of battle. And after that, as NATO lost the ability to distinguish between the rebels (rats) and Jamahiriya (Qaddafi loyalist, green Libyan patriotic resistance) fighters, the rats in the port were attacked with dense mortar fire. They ran to the sea and drowned. The rebels had nowhere to run! So the probability of large losses among the rebels is high.

Also, China Radio reported (and this is verbatim): "At present, Sirte, Bani-Walid, and other territories are still under the control of the faithful Gaddafi's forces." Notice the words, "and other territories." Apparently, Chinese censorship prevents China Radio from describing precisely what "other territories" are under Jamahiriya control. So, their intelligence throws out hints. On the other hand, the reality is that it is hard to distinguish the Chinese media from western media, as the once-great Asian nation has become the new bastion of capitalism and a new body host to the zionist-banker parasitic elite, which started since the visit of Kissinger to China.

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 12:17

To understand the ferocity of the fighting in Sirte, from the perspective of the vicious north-western (white) countries, we must consider more than just the political point of view.

The Libyan Jamahiriya of Africa has offered a very, very unique response to the so-called "fall" of Tripoli, its capital--perhaps the most unique response in the history of warfare. Historically, the fall of the capital of a country had been so severe a shock that the government and people of that country would capitulate.

That did not happen in Libya because power does not rest in a traditional form of government in a capital city but is diffused and dispersed across millions of citizens who are members of the people's conferences which form the government in the self-ruling society of the masses (Jamahiriya). The defiant response of the Libyan people and the Libyan Jamahiriya to the "fall" of Tripoli (occupation by mercenaries and rats), obviously, as it continues to fight against imperialist aggression, is a drastic departure from the historical response of Third World nations to the fall of their capitals.

Why Sirte?

Sirte has been blessed to contain a very wide oil basin. Look at a geological map. Pools of oil are located at Beida, Raguba, Dahr Hofra, Baja, Def-Waha, Nasser, Sarir, Mesli, Gyalo, Boo Atifel, Intizar, Nafura-Ugila and Amal, 12 of which have proven oil reserves that range from 200-500 million barrels, to 1 billion barrels. The problem is that these deposits in terms of production are - as they call the oil - in adulthood. That is, the production is coming to the peak. This oil will soon run out, and there is the need for more exploration.

The second problem is that the war has brought the coalition countries and Western companies significant losses in oil revenue. Both directly and indirectly - for over six months, Europe has not received the Libyan oil and gas from Libya. This has all but crippled Italy along with the already bankruptcy of Europe as some of the capitalist countries there, in particular Britain, France and Spain, had run out of the vast resources they had plundered from Africa in the last century.

In addition, oil-production infrastructure is seriously damaged. So, the imperialist demons want to take the Sirte basin and develop it in order to compensate for their losses.

Certainly, while the war is being waged, there can be no exploration and investment. In Europe there is no money even after the war ends. It would take massive investment to restore oil production. The longer it takes for the imperialist-colonialist-racist Europeans and North Americans to capture Sirte, the more money it will take for them to restore the oil production. And that is one reason they are fighting hard to take Sirte: to avoid anticipated, post-war oil-production costs.

The West, in general, is actually indifferent to the issue of political stability in Libya. In fact, their plan is that instability (chaos) benefits them, their "security" companies, private armies (mercenaries) will benefit, and be able to grab whatever they want, out of the chaos. What is more important to the West is the capture of Sirte--and not because Sirte is the hometown of The Leader. It's all about oil and the central area of strategic military importance in order to secure the entire Libyan coast, the largest coast line on North Africa of any of the five North African states, to place it under the command of the white aggressors (AFRICOM-NATO).

The war is causing deep downtime as regards oil production, and the financial losses, for the West, associated with that downtime are immense. There is an added complexity for the evil nations of the north: the loyalty of the tribes to Muammar Gaddafi. Obviously, the tribes will continue to support Muammar.

And that is why Libyans [God forbid] might suffer the fate of Paraguay natives, that is, total genocide, or banishment into the wilderness. A hundred years ago, Libya lost half of its population, by putting up a fierce and continuous resistance to Italy's invasion of Libya.

The economic factor explains why many people have feared that the West would not hesitate to use nuclear weapons on Sirte. But there are very, very high costs involved in using nuclear weapons even to the Europeans, as Libya is near to Europe, and sometimes north African sand is blown all the way into distant European capitals. Costs associated with the decontamination of oil deposits that would be contaminated if nuclear weapons were used, are also a factor. Costs involved in re-building infrastructure are not a negative factor, as the Euro-American alliance (NATO) hopes that Libya will end up paying (with oil) for their companies to "re-construct" Libya after its devastation.

Updates from the front lines

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 14:02

1. Gadames: The Tuareg lions of the Sahara killed 50 rebels, and the rest of the rebels fled.

2. Sirte: In the battle of Sirte, on the Western front, one week after the death of Ibrahim al-Khatib al Halbusa, commander of the Misurata rebels known as the "black Khatib," his brother, Mohammed Al Halbus, was also killed by Jamahiriya fighters. Al-Halbus had come to replace his brother. These two deaths have lowered the morale of the rebels, which led to their demise around Sirte.

On the Sirte eastern front, some of the rebels, under the protection of NATO arial bombing and bombing from NATO ships, tried to penetrate and enter the city. The Libyan Jamahiriya Army allowed them (2 tanks, 12 vehicles and some others) to come close to the center, where they were trapped and met their deaths.

One rebel, a survivor, ran in front of a BBC camera and shouted: "Please enter the city, we are trapped and we do not have much strength." The response he received was that no one would attempt to enter the city because of the battle.

3. Bani-Walid: Sami Ali Al Tarragon, the Deputy Brigade Commander of the rebels of Tripoli, was killed yesterday and he was one of many rebels who met their deaths. Also, the traitor who wanted to help the rebels take Bani Walid was captured by the residents of the city.

4. Tripoli: In a night ambush, 14 rebels met their deaths. Our source said that the rebel checkpoints are empty, because no rebel wants to stand, waiting for death. Thus, Jamahiriya resistance were able to kill many rebel rats in the past week.

FIGHTING CONTINUES: Information from September 27-28

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 18:36

The tactics of groups under rebels at Sirte are very primitive. They come in pickups with 23-mm automatic anti-aircraft guns and 106-mm recoilless rifles. Then they try to identify firing points. Then rebels with small arms attempt to move forward. If the Jamahiriya defenders do not move away, then the rebels are rolled back. After a while they begin a new "assault."

If the rebels have tanks, then the tanks are used next. At the same time the make a radio call for NATO air support. NATO aircraft conduct strikes on buildings at the contact line between the rebels and the Jamahiriya forces. Both sides are using snipers.

When trapped by the Sirte resistance fighters of the Libyan Jamahiriya, the rebels have nowhere to retreat to, other than to the fish in the sea.

The second most important stronghold is Bani Walid, where there are thousands of Jamahiriya resistance fighters, including militias of the Warfala Tribe.

In recent days, the rebels did not take active steps against the defenders of the city. NATO aircraft continued to carry out air strikes on the civilian population.

In the southern desert oasis of Sabha the Libyan Jamahiriya fighters have had military success. The rebels entered from the south but failed to gain a foothold in the city, although many foreign news agencies were quick to announce a new success of TNC "rebels". After dozens of rebels were killed or wounded, and after their supplies were expended, the remaining rebels began to withdraw along the highway in a northerly direction.

The rebels cannot possibly sustain control of Tripoli. Experts say that to control a city of half a million people, you need up to seven thousand police officers. There are an estimated 2000 AL-Qaida type fighters in Tripoli. They are able to provide relative order in the embassy district and downtown areas. In the capital there are secret cells of Gaddafi and Jamahiriya supporters (green committees). They use tactics to split the rat forces, and are destroying them at every turn.

The TNC has established "war lords" in areas under their control, but those war lords do not obey instructions they receive from Benghazi and Tripoli. So the power of the TNC in the country is nominal--very small. The rebels are trying to coordinate their efforts, but that attempt is failing.

True, in Misurata was announced the merger of all forces and opponents of Gaddafi's with the creation of a "battalion of the United Libyan Revolution" ("Union of the revolutionary battalions of Libya"). About this there seemed to be agreement at a meeting of field commanders, who came from different areas.

The total number of armed groups that support the TNC, is estimated at about 20,000 fighters. During August-September, a very large number of them were either killed, wounded, or deserted. The morale in many of the rebel frontline detachments is deeply suppressed.

Rebel soldiers have not received a salary, and have been told to engage in "self-reliance." During the fighting in Sirte and Bani Walid they suffered heavy casualties, the wounded crowded the hospitals in Misurata and Benghazi, and there is not enough blood for transfusion.

For the rebels, it is apparent that the capture of Tripoli, as well as the falsely perceived change of power in the country, will not lead to positive changes in their lives. Some are beginning to regret participation in their so-called "revolution" and return to their homes with their weapons.

Dumb NATO Rebels, NATO Crimes In Libya

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 22:32

Sirte is fully under the Libyan Jamahariya democratic Government's control. Multiple attempts by rebel forces to enter the city from the East ended up in their devastating defeat. NATO has only been victorious in terrorizing the town, and killing thousands of civilians.

New reports exposed the truth regarding the Sirte assault, a failed assault which caused hundreds of NATO mercenaries to get entrapped within the town. Some rebel fighters who managed to flee the front lines went to their commanders and begged for support, because many had been trapped and are being killed as we speak. This was also reported, surprisingly, by western propaganda machines that usually hide the truth regarding NATO failures.

The Libyan Jamahariya government has expressed its willingness to forgive anyone who lays down their arms and goes home, just like the forces outside Bani Walid who laid down their arms and went home. They expressed their Islamic belief of forgiveness, but stated clearly that forgiveness does not mean that Libyans will forget.

All assaults from the west of Sirte have been quelled due to the brave and strong fighters of the Tarhuna tribe. NATO continues its assault from the East, but the rebels continue to retreat due to heavy losses.

Previously, NATO (European and American) mercenaries tried to flee Ghadames and set up a base in Tunisia. But fighting soon broke out between NATO-rebels and the Tunisian Defence Forces. The Tunisian Defence Forces forced the mercenaries back into Libya.

NATO forces were trying to flee towards the east of Ghadames to regroup. That is when the Libyan Defence Forces attacked their route and killed at least 50 and injured unknown numbers according to sources in southern Libya. Ghadames is an important town because it borders both Tunisia and Algeria. So it is an important town for guerilla warfare.

NATO Mercenaries (rats) were on the brink of quitting the fight in Sabha, after receiving heavy casualties when they fell into a trap. NATO decided to give 16 million dollars of stolen Libyan money as payment for the mercenaries to continue the fight.

Sabha is still liberated and under the control of the Libyan Jamahiriya. Green flags are flying throughout the town according to sources in Southern Libya. NATO mercenaries are still ducking outside the town under the umbrella of NATO.

They fight only for money and war bounties, as reported before. When NATO helps them enter a town, they steal women's jewellery, rape the women and children, and get drunk and high, shooting animals at random.

Rat death

Wednesday, 28.09.2011 - 23:26

A military officer of the TNC, Salehin, who commanded the attack on Bani Walid, was killed in a rocket attack, said a rebel commander named Osama al-Fasi.

Salehin was imprisoned by Gaddafi after the beginning of the rebel's counterrevolution and joined the rebels. In the last days of his life, he led the attack on Bani Walid -- another city that is under the authority of the Libyan Jamahiriya.

Rebel NATO-rat forces at Bani Walid have not attacked on the ground in a week after besieging the town for over a month. At the same time, NATO continues aerial attacks on targets that remain in the hands of supporters of Muammar Qaddafi and the Libyan Jamahiriya.

Meanwhile, according to eyewitnesses, Bani Walid is in a critical humanitarian situation. One can hardly find drinking water and foodstuffs, and the hospitals are out of medication and electricity, with NATO having deliberately starved and blockaded the population preventing fuel, water, and food from entering in what constitutes further Crimes Against Humanity.

Libyan Loyalists' Resistance Compels NATO-led Rebels to Suspend Forming Provisional Regime

Libya de facto PM calls for early election

BEIJING, Sept. 30 (Xinhuanet) -- The ruling authorities will postpone the formation of an interim government until the entire Libya is without redoubts of fallen leader Muammar Gaddafi, Mahmoud Jibril, chairman of the executive office of Libya's National Transitional Council (NTC) confirmed here on Thursday.

Therefore, the current executive office is to remain in operation, Jibril told reporters in Tripoli, confirming Tuesday's report about the NTC's decision after negotiation not to establish a transitional government till all Libya is under NTC's rule.

According to Jibril, the existing executive office will be kept as the caretaker administration. But he admitted that there could be some changes in some ministries.

Anyone qualified for the posts in the future formation of the government could apply for the posts, said the chairman of NTC's executive office, who also dismissed allegations that tribe members would have to spend more "waiting time" than the NTC members in application.

In the meantime, Jibril said he will not be "related to the transitional government," but failed to elaborate on that.

On the reported capture of Moussa Ibrahim, spokesman of Gaddafi, Jibril said he had heard about this, but cannot confirm. "But I hope it is true," he said.

The senior official also said the NTC has agreed with a number of countries, including Italy, France and Egypt, on sending the injured to their countries for proper treatment, and confirmed that the personnel from Brazil, Sudan and Egypt are helping the new Libyan rulers with the clearance of mines in some towns.


Editor: Zhang Xiang

California State Prison Officials Vow to Crack Down on Inmate Hunger Strike

State prison officials vow to crack down on inmate hunger strikes

September 29, 2011
Los Angeles Times

California corrections officials said Thursday that they were cracking down on thousands of inmates who have been staging hunger strikes at nine prisons, including some of the state's highest-security facilities.

The inmates are protesting what they consider degrading conditions in isolation cells and gang-security measures that unfairly punish prisoners. In July, thousands of inmates staged a three-week hunger strike at prisons across the state.

Leaders of the current hunger strikes were warned that they would be removed from the general population and placed in an "administrative segregation unit" if the actions continued, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said in a statement.

"The department will not condone organized inmate disturbances," the agency said.

Other inmates were told they would face disciplinary action and could suffer other punishment such as having their canteen items taken from their cells, officials said.

More than 4,200 inmates have missed nine consecutive meals since Monday at facilities including Corcoran State Prison, Ironwood State Prison, Pelican Bay State Prison and San Quentin State Prison.

Zimbabwe Official Calls for Setting Up Rural Courts

Set up rural courts: Makarau

Friday, 30 September 2011 02:00

Judicial Service Commission Secretary Justice Rita Makarau inspected a cycle patrol unit during a police passout parade at Morris Depot in Harare yesterday

Herald Reporter

SUPREME Court judge Justice Rita Makarau has called for the establishment of more courts and circuit courts in the rural areas to ensure justice was accessible to all.

Justice Makarau, who is also secretary for the Judicial Service Commission, said the available courts were not enough to service the whole country.

She was addressing police officers at a passout parade where she was the reviewing officer at Morris Depot in Harare yesterday.

The judge said some rural communities were too far from the magistrates' courts hence the distance was likely to kill many cases as witnesses and suspects face transport problems.

She said the situation was worsened by the fact that police were not adequately resourced.

Police do not have adequate transport to take suspects and witnesses to distant courts and the roads in some areas were so bad hindering the delivery of justice.

"I am calling for more co-ordination between the police and the Judicial Service Commission in the establishment of courthouses and circuit courts to service the numerous police stations that you (Police Commissioner General) have commendably established throughout the country.

"It is a sad development, Commissioner General, that the development of police stations in rural Zimbabwe has not been matched by a corresponding development of courthouses within manageable distances," she said.

Justice Makarau gave an example of Guruve Magistrates' Court that handles matters from police stations as far Kanyemba, some 200 km away.

"The distance would not have mattered much if our rural police stations were adequately resourced and had efficient fleets of vehicles and our road networks were in the best of conditions," Justice Makarau said.

Some police officers, she said, travel by public transport to the court together with the accused persons and the witnesses and they get to court late after warrants of arrest would have been issued.

"They invariably arrive at the courts after 11am at which time a warrant of arrest would have been issued against the accused person.

"The court will have to re-sit after lunch firstly to cancel the warrant of arrest and then remand the trial to a future date when the circus is repeated again and again until some of the witnesses disappear or move to some untraceable parts of the country," she said.

The Herald is reliably informed that the JSC officers this year visited each and every province assessing the operations identifying the challenges affecting the delivery of justice.

Justice Makarau said the number of police stations in the rural areas did not match the number of courts servicing them.

The passout parade saw 315 recruits graduating after a six-month rigorous training.

Among them 63 were women. Justice Makarau hailed the police for their high training standards but suggested that more women should be recruited to ensure gender balance in the next squads.

Senior officers from the JSC including Justice Makarau her deputy Mr Rex Shana, Master of High Court Mr Charles Nyatanga, his deputy Mr Eldrad Mutasa, Supreme Court Registrar Ms Mazabani, Chief Magistrate Mr Mishrod Guvamombe, among others, attended function.
Attorney General Mr Johannes Tomana and senior police officers were also present.

Zambia's New President Michael Sata Appoints White Ally Vice-President

Sata names white ally vice president

Tendai H. Manzvanzvike
Foreign Editor
Zimbabwe Herald

ZAMBIA'S new president Michael Sata yesterday named his 19-member cabinet including a white vice president Guy Scott.
This is the first time a white man has held such a high position in post-independent Zambia.

Under the constitution of Zambia, when a sitting president dies, the vice president automatically becomes president but must run for elections within 90 days.

The Zambian leader has also fired, with immediate effect, the Central Bank Governor Caleb Fundanga, who is believed to have helped curb inflation to below 10 percent for the first time in 30 years.

Sata, who was sworn in last Friday, said the Ten Commandments will form the guiding principles for his government.

Scott is Sata's close ally and deputy in the Patriotic Front.

Born in 1944 in Livingstone, Scott did his education in Zambia and the then Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe).

His late father, an ally of Zambia's nationalists founded the African Mail, which is now the Zambia Daily Mail.

He studied economics at Cambridge University and holds a PhD in cognitive science from the University of Sussex in England.

After leaving Cambridge University, Scott joined Zambia's public service as a planner in the Ministry of Finance.

During the same period, he was also deputy editor of the Business and Economy of East and Central Africa.

He left the public service in 1970 to start his own business.

Scott joined active politics in 1990 when he joined the Movement for Multiparty Democracy.
At its first convention, the MMD elected him chairperson of the agriculture committee.

After the general election in 1991, Scott was appointed Minister of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries.

He resigned from the MMD in 1996 and formed his own political party - the Lima Party together with Ben Kapita, then president of the Zambia National Farmers Union.

After the collapse of the coalition parties, Scott joined the Patriotic Front, where he became a National Assembly member when elected member for Lusaka Central in the 2006 general election.

President Sata's other key appointments include Edgar Lungu, deputy minister in the vice president's office.

He also appointed businessman Alexander Chikwanda as finance minister.

Godfrey Mwamba is defence minister.

He will be deputised by Colonel Panji Kaunda, son to Zambia's first president, Dr Kenneth Kaunda.

The Foreign Affairs ministry will be headed by Chishimba Kambwili.

Willie Nsanda is the transport minister.

Below is a list of the other members of Zambia's new cabinet:

Ministry of Justice - Sebastian Zulu; Home Affairs - Kennedy Sakeni; Health - Dr Joseph Kasonde; Agriculture and Livestock - Emmanuel Chenda; Labour, Sports, Youth and Gender - Fackson Shamenda (a former
ZCTU president); Commerce, Trade and Industry - Robert Sichinga; Mines - Wilbur Simuusa; Information, Broadcasting and Tourism - Given Lubinda; Education, Science and Vocational Training - Dr J T N Phiri; Lands, Energy and Water Development - C Yaluma; Local Government, Housing, Early Education and Environment - Professor Nkandu Luo; Community Development, Mother and Child Health - Dr Joseph Katema; Chiefs and Traditional Affairs - Inonge Wina; Transport, Works, Supply and Communications - W Nsanda.

President Sata also brought on board George Chella a journalist from the Post stable as his spokesperson. The Post is a pro-PF newspaper.

Gender activists are already complaining that women who form the bulk of the population have been sidelined in the new cabinet.

They argue that the appointments do not adhere to Sadc's guidelines on mainstreaming gender in politics and decision-making.

President Sata is also being accused of nominating more MPs than he is allowed to by Zambia's constitution.

The current constitution allows the president to nominate at most 8 MPs at any given time, but Sata appointed 10.

The constitution says, "the President may, at any time after a general election to the National Assembly and before the National Assembly is next dissolved, appoint such number of persons as he considers necessary to enhance the representation in the National Assembly as regards special interests or skills, to be nominated members of the National Assembly, so, however, that there are not more than eight such members at any onetime."

President Sata defeated former president Rupiah Banda in a tripartite election held on September 20.

Banda, who was Zambia's deputy president, took over the presidency after Levy Mwanawasa's death in July 2008.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Zimbabwe Vice-President Joice Mujuru Expresses Displeasure With UK, European Sanctions

VP Mujuru meets British, German ambassadors

Friday, 30 September 2011 02:00
Herald Reporters

VICE President Joice Mujuru yesterday met the new British and Germany ambassadors to Zimbabwe Deborah Bronnert and Hans Gnodtke and expressed displeasure over their failure to lift the illegal sanctions they imposed on the country.

United Nations resident co-ordinator, Mr Alain Noudehou, also met VP Mujuru and commended Government's commitment to complete the constitution-making process.

Speaking to journalists after meeting VP Mujuru at her Munhumutapa Offices, the two envoys confirmed her "grave" concern over the maintenance of the sanctions.

Although VP Mujuru told the two diplomats that illegal sanctions were hurting Zimbabwe, Ambassador Bronnert indicated that London was not yet ready to entirely lift them.

She said her government this year reviewed the illegal sanctions and would continue to do so basing on what she termed "progress on the implementation of the Global Political Agreement".

"Of course the VP raised that and the position of our government remains that we will continue to review the restrictive measures.

"We reviewed them this year and we hope to continue to review them, depending on the progress made on the implementation of the GPA," she said.

Ambassador Bronnert said she also discussed with VP Mujuru trade relations between Harare and London.

She said trade between the two countries increased about 85 percent this year.

Ambassador Bronnert said Britain was also ready to work with any party that won free and fair elections in Zimbabwe.

"We also talked about my Prime Minister's call that there should be free and fair elections in Zimbabwe and his concern on the implementation of the GPA and the election roadmap.

"He (David Cameroon) said UK will work with any party that wins free and fair elections, whether it is Zanu-PF or MDC-T," she said.
She said Britain was working to improve the lives of ordinary Zimbabweans and this year London availed US$130 million to that end.
The money was channelled through Western controlled non-governmental organisations.

Ambassador Gnodtke said VP Mujuru spoke her mind on why Germany maintained the sanctions against Zimbabwe.

"I had the opportunity to have a frank discussions with the Vice President.

"We discussed political reforms here, Zimbabwe-Germany relations and I promised to work on them.

"She was, however, not happy with the sanctions, which we prefer to call restrictive measures.

"I explained the position of the EU and that there was need for free and fair elections in the country and that the parties should respect the outcome of the elections," he said.

He said the removal of the sanctions remained a collective decision by the EU council of ministers.

Mr Noudehou briefed VP Mujuru on the upcoming RIO+20 conference on environment and sustainable development.

He said he raised a number of areas the UN wanted to work with Zimbabwe for the benefit of the people.

He emphasised that development takes place in a peaceful environment.

Fresh Fighting Breaks Out in Yemen

Fresh fighting breaks out in Yemen

The dynamic in Yemen's long-simmering uprising has significantly changed, with factions of the armed forces battling each other – threatening to turn the largely peaceful uprising into civil war.

By Tom A. Peter, Correspondent
New York Times
September 29, 2011 at 9:08 am EDT

Fresh fighting broke out in Yemen's capital today, heightening concerns that increasing division among armed tribal factions and splits in Yemen’s armed forces may lead the Arab world’s poorest nation into full-blown civil war.

Today the elite Republican Guard, led by President Ali Abdullah Saleh's son, engaged in fierce clashes with soldiers loyal to dissident Gen. Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar, who once served as the "iron fist" of Mr. Saleh's regime but is now one of his most powerful rivals.

The fighting has broken a three-day period of calm that provided some hope that Saleh would return to a peace plan designed by other Gulf nations, reports Raidió Teilifís Éireann. Diplomats had urged Saleh to stay in Saudi Arabia where he spent three months recuperating after a rocket attack, but he returned on Sept. 23, triggering much unrest.

The Christian Science Monitor reported yesterday that the entrance of Mohsen's troops into the fray since Saleh's return has significantly changed the dynamic of fighting in Sanaa, and could transform what has until now been a largely peaceful uprising into true civil war.

Mohsen’s troops are now fully intermixed with the protesters; cruising through the camp in the back of armored vehicles, chewing qat in protester’s tents, even being treated alongside injured protesters in the nearby field hospital. Initial doubt over whether the renegade troops would aid their cause has largely been replaced by the prevailing attitude that they are the “heroes and vanguards” of the revolution.

“In an ideal world we wouldn’t need the firqa [Mohsen's troops] but now it’s different, it’s clear to us now that without them we’d be slaughtered,” a young protester leader named Adel told the Monitor on Monday.

The fear remains though that their increasingly active role may help justify an even tougher crackdown by the regime on the basis they are fighting armed groups and not civilian demonstrators.

As fighting intensified some resident of Sanaa have begun to flee their homes to avoid being caught in the cross fire, reports Xinhua.

“One rebel of powerful tribal leader Sadiq al-Ahmar was killed, another five rebels were wounded in the heavy clashes and shelling that rocked the northern neighborhood of Hassaba district in downtown Sanaa on Thursday morning,” said a senior Yemeni official in a Xinhua article. “Also, five civilians were injured after their houses nearby the stronghold of al-Ahmar's residential compound were shelled by random mortars.”

Already there are reports of stray artillery shells hitting civilian homes in Sanaa, which have killed at least one person.

“We appeal to the international community and human rights organizations to intervene to protect our lives,” Mohammed al-Jamali, a resident of an area reportedly being hit with stray shells told Bloomberg.

The situation may see a steep rise in civilian causalities today as a youth group plans to march to from their encampment in Change Square to the area of the city that is home to Saleh’s residence.

Organizers say they hope it will be peaceful and they have asked Ahmar’s soldiers not to accompany them to avoid provoking government forces, reports AFP.

“There will be an escalation during the coming two days. The youths will march... to Hedda Street, where the president's residence is,” Walid al-Amari, a youth activist told AFP.

During previous peaceful protests, government forces have shown little restraint or hesitancy when it comes to using force. Last week, at least three protesters were killed by sniper fire. Dozens of other unarmed protesters were killed in separate incidents last week, reports The New York Times.

Saleh has ruled Yemen for 33 years. The demonstrations, which began in January, mark the biggest challenge ever faced by his presidency.

Reuters reports that as the situation continues to unravel, Sanaa is “now carved up into spheres of influence of government troops and pro-opposition forces.”

Syrian Government Supporters Pelt US Envoy With Eggs

Syrian government supporters pelt US envoy with eggs

Associated Press

BEIRUT (AP) — Supporters of President Bashar Assad stoned the convoy of the U.S. ambassador to Syria as he arrived for a meeting with a leading opposition figure on Thursday, then pelted him with eggs and tomatoes and tried to break into the building while he was inside, the opposition activist and a U.S. official said. The American envoy was trapped in the office for three hours by the angry mob outside.

Ambassador Robert Ford, an outspoken critic of Assad's crackdown on the 6-month-old anti-government uprising, was unharmed and eventually escorted out by Syrian security forces, who showed up more than an hour after the attack began. He was meeting with Hassan Abdul-Azim, who heads the outlawed Arab Socialist Democratic Union party.

"Now that security forces are here, I believe his life is not in danger," Abdul-Azim told The Associated Press.

In Washington, a State Department official said Ford was back safe at the U.S. Embassy compound. The official said Ford's meeting with the opposition figure as part of his regular business.

He said protesters threw "rocks and other objects" at the vehicles in his convoy and then tried to hit Ford and other embassy staffers with eggs and tomatoes. The official said he did not think that Ford was hit by anything, but couldn't say for sure. The official said Syrian security forces eventually cleared the mob of about 100 protesters, but that it took more than an hour for reinforcements to arrive to do that.

Ford has angered the Syrian regime in past months by visiting a couple of the protest centers outside of Damascus in a show of solidarity with the anti-government uprising. The latest incident could further raise tensions between Washington and Damascus, which has accused the United States of helping incite violence in Syria. In August, President Barack Obama demanded Assad resign, saying he had lost his legitimacy as a ruler.

Abdul-Azim said Ford was inside his office when the Assad supporters tried to force their way in, breaking some door locks. Office staff prevented them from rushing in, but the ambassador was trapped inside for about three hours by the hostile pro-government protesters outside.

"We don't want him anywhere in Syria and if I ever see him, I will throw at him whatever I am carrying," said university student Majd Mutlaq, 21, as he stood outside Abdul-Azim's office with a bag of eggs and tomatoes. Mutlaq said he came after he heard the ambassador was inside the building.

The U.S. Embassy had no immediate comment on the confrontation.

The attack on Ford came five days after government supporters threw eggs and stones at France's ambassador as he left a meeting in Damascus with a Greek Orthodox patriarch. Ambassador Eric Chevallier was unharmed.

Tension between the West and Syria— Iran's closest Arab ally — have been rising for months.

Washington and the European Union have imposed sanctions on some Syrian officials, including Assad, because of Assad's crackdown that has left some 2,700 people, according to the United Nations.

A trip in July by the U.S. and French ambassadors to the central city of Hama to express support for protesters drew swift condemnation from the Syrian government, which said the unauthorized visits were proof that Washington was inciting violence in the Arab nation. Authorities then warned both ambassadors not to travel outside the capital without permission.

A month later, the Obama administration brushed off a complaint by Syrian authorities that Ford violated their travel rules by leaving Damascus without permission. The Syrian foreign ministry registered concern over Ford's trip in August from Damascus to the southern village of Jassem, where he met opposition activists.

Last month, Ford and several other ambassadors expressed their condolences to the family of a rights advocate who was killed.

The U.S. has maintained diplomatic relations with Syria even while protesting Assad's efforts to crush the uprising.
AP writer Matthew Lee in Washington contributed to this report.

Bassem Mroue can be reached at

SEC Probes Banks Over Mortgage Loans

September 28, 2011 11:06 pm

SEC probes banks over mortgage loans

By Kara Scannell in New York
Financial Times

The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating Royal Bank of Scotland, Credit Suisse and other financial institutions for their handling of problem mortgage loans, according to public disclosures and people familiar with the matter.

The SEC is examining whether banks misled shareholders about the number of loans they might be forced to buy back because of early defaults – known as loan repurchase requests – and set aside sufficient reserves to fund those purchases or handle related litigation, people familiar with the matter said.

RBS disclosed the probe in a regulatory filing last month, saying it relates to “document deficiencies and remedial measures taken with respect to such deficiencies. The investigation also seeks information related to early payment defaults and loan repurchase requests.” RBS said it was co-operating with the investigation and “has not experienced a significant volume of repurchase demands . . . and has not ceased any of its US foreclosure activities”.

Credit Suisse was subpoenaed by the SEC in relation to allegations made in a private lawsuit, according to court filings. MBIA sued Credit Suisse, alleging the bank fraudulently sold securities backed by loans that did not meet underwriting standards.

A spokesman for MBIA said the law firm representing it in the litigation has also been subpoenaed by the SEC for documents related to that lawsuit. Credit Suisse has denied any wrongdoing.

Another facet of the investigation is the examining of whether banks sold investors securities backed by mortgages that they knew fell short of underwriting standards.

The SEC is also looking into whether some banks reached settlements with originators over problem loans but failed either to disclose the pacts or replace the bad loans as required by contract, these people say. The practice is known as “double-dipping” because the banks collect fees twice, once for securitising the loans and again in settlements.

Banks are already under investigation by New York’s attorney-general for similar mortgage practices. The New York prosecutor is probing practices at banks including RBS, JPMorgan Chase, UBS, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America and Morgan Stanley , people familiar with the matter have said.

Public Finances: Capitalist Austerity Escalates Risk

September 22, 2011 7:58 pm

Public finances: Austerity drive slides into rancour and risk

By Chris Giles
Financial Times

At the Toronto summit in June 2010, leaders of the Group of 20 leading nations thought they had settled the vexed issue of the degree and pace of budgetary consolidation after the economic crisis.

Everyone signed up to the proposal that advanced economies (except Japan) would halve their budget deficits by 2013.

The pledge was designed to inspire confidence that governments had a grip on public finances and would lower borrowing as recovery continued. It was the moment the advanced world moved from stimulus to austerity and the proposals had widespread support.

No longer.

A year later, fiscal policy is again in flux. The US scraped a political deal to increase its debt ceiling before the world’s largest economy descended into likely default in August. Standard & Poor’s, the credit rating agency, alarmed by the political damage caused by the debt ceiling fight, downgraded the US triple-A rating, sending markets into a tailspin.

Internationally, the disputes over fiscal policy, which characterised the supposedly harmonised response to the 2008-09 financial and economic crisis, restarted as the global recovery stalled.

Germany is under pressure to loosen its fiscal ties against its will. Christine Lagarde, the new managing director of the International Monetary Fund, has urged countries with the means to slow their austerity drives. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development trod the same path in its September recommendations.

But Germany is putting strong pressure on the rest of the eurozone to cut deficits quickly, as storm clouds gather over Italy, Spain and Greece. It is dismayed that Barack Obama, US president, announced a jobs plan, cutting taxes and increasing spending at a rate that would make US compliance with the Toronto agreement difficult.

What once appeared a straightforward process of delivering what many thought was a reasonable budget deficit reduction plan amid a gradual recovery has suddenly become fraught with rancour and risk.

By the time the Group of Seven finance ministers and central bank governors met in Marseilles this month, there was ill-disguised frustration with the fiscal plans of other countries.

But the truth behind all these disputes is much more complex than the headline tensions suggest. Hidden behind claim and counter-claim are surprising starting points from which each country was adjusting policy this autumn.

Contrary to received wisdom, the US did not have the loosest fiscal plans of advanced economies. In fact, with tax cuts due to expire at the end of 2011, before the president’s speech, the administration was planning the deepest austerity drive in 2012 of any G7 country. It was seeking to close its underlying deficit by 1.4 percentage points of national income in 2012.

If Mr Obama can get his proposals through Congress – a big if – the US would only slightly relax its budget deficit by 0.4 percentage points of national income in 2012, according to Goldman Sachs, a move that hardly counts as a large fiscal stimulus.

In contrast, while Germany preaches austerity to the rest of Europe, it has the loosest plans for fiscal consolidation in the G7 for 2012. According to the IMF, its underlying deficit was set to fall only 0.6 percentage points, albeit from a low level to one even smaller.

The challenge now is to set fiscal policy at a time of deep uncertainty over two vital variables.

First, it remains unclear whether private-sector demand is so weak that government is the only economic actor willing to spend.

Second, people can only guess the effects of fiscal consolidation at a time when every leading economy is trying to get borrowing down simultaneously.

Global fiscal policy remains unresolved and the G7 was reduced to empty statements in Marseilles. When ministers call for “growth-friendly fiscal consolidation”, as they did in Marseilles, their objective is evident, but their policies and likely reaction to shocks are undefined.

With the big issues in flux, countries are enshrining their existing deficit reduction programmes in legislation in an attempt to convince markets that their resolve is strong.

If the world economy continues to slide, fiscal policy will not be set by legislation but by the altogether more unpredictable whims of the wider global recovery.

US Embassy Used Ghana Police to Arrest Pan-African Demonstrators

Protester's report: U.S. embassy used Ghana Police to violently arrest us in Qathafi Victory March

Posted: 2011/09/28
From: Mathaba

Every Ghanaian and every African must be in an organization working to remove the neo-colonialists from their land.

by Akili Mosi

The constitution of Ghana in Chapter five Article 21 section 1(d) it states: "All persons shall have the right of freedom of assembly including freedom to take part in processions and demonstrations."

This can be interpreted to mean that the power of demonstrations resides in the right of the Ghanaian people. As long as Ghanaians, who exercise this right and power, follow the Public Order Act 491 of 1994 the people shall maintain this right and power.

The US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition embarked upon a peaceful demonstration, whose theme was "Qathafi Victory March" on 21st September 2011, at approximately 11:00 am in honour of Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah’s 102nd birthday. The Ghana Police Service stationed at the Regional Police Headquarters, Accra headed by Commander Rosie Atinga Biyuu illegally disrupted and stopped the demonstration.

The Coalition made up of Ghanaian progressive and revolutionary organizations had their rights and power usurped at the behest of US neo-colonialist interest and influence in Ghana to the detriment of the constitutional rights of Ghanaian citizens.

On Monday 3rd September 2011, the US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition delivered a public notice to the police, as required by law, to demonstrate by marching from Kwame Nkrumah Circle to the United States Embassy—the largest US embassy in Africa.

At this point on Thursday, 6th September 2011 our coalition was called by the police on telephone and requested to meet with the Regional commander, of the Accra Police Service. Inside this meeting Rosie Atinga Biyuu informed the US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition they could not demonstrate on that day because there would not be enough police officers available, and moreover the area where the U.S. embassy is located "belongs to America, and it is called Little America."

Rosie Atinga Biyuu also stated that, "I and other officers went into the U.S. embassy, and they told us they did not want your coalition of demonstrators near their embassy." Upon further discussion she added: "No one will be there to receive your petition, and if you want to demonstrate on another day with a different route to another place, the U.S. embassy would send someone to receive your petition."

As the discussion continued Rosie Atinga Biyuu stated: "Don't challenge me, and if you decide to go there you will be met with sniper fire and bullets!"

N.B.: the US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition's public notice never requested to deliver a petition to the U.S. embassy, nor did we, by exercising our constitutional rights, ask to be shot!

After being told we would have to change the date and destination, the coalition members went back and discussed the issue with their organizations, and decided to resubmit another public notice on Monday, 10th September 2011. Since we were not given anything in writing to prevent us from demonstrating, we stated the demonstration would continue at the same date and time, with the same route, thus having the same target of the U.S. embassy to express our opposition to the U.S. NATO bombing, invasion and war waged against Libya.

Our coalition was called on telephone by the Ghana Police Service on Thursday, 15th September 2011 and was requested to come to the police station to take a letter dated 12th September 2011 in response to our second public notice to demonstrate on 21st September 2011. The Coalition was able to obtain the letter on Friday, 16th September 2011, and our Coalition members (who went to receive the letter) were reminded verbally by the Ghana Police Service not to go near the U.S. embassy.

The letter stipulated:

1.We have therefore deployed all resources available to us for the event. Besides there are other operational exigencies that day of which we are committed to provide security.
2.The Accra Regional Police Command would therefore not be able to provide you with the needed security during your intended demonstration stated for 21st September 2011.
3.The command therefore requests you to respectfully postpone your intended demonstration to a later date.
4.In accordance with sect: 1 sub sect 5 of the Public Order Act 1994 (Act 491) you are requested to notify the police in writing within 48 hours of your willingness to comply with the directives in paragraph 3 above.

The US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition, because of the significance of the day being Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah’s birthday, decided not to comply. The decision was taken while being fully aware of the consequences, valuing the pros and cons and for the following reasons:

1.The power and right of demonstration resides in the hands of Ghanaian citizens as outlined in the 1992 constitution of Ghana.
2.The Public Order Act 1994 (Act 491) sect 6 and 7 states:
(6) Where the organizers refuse to comply with the request under subsection (4) or fail to notify the police officer in accordance with subsection (5), the police officer may apply to any judge or chairman of a tribunal for an order to prohibit the holding of the special event on the proposed date or at the proposed location.
(7) The Judge or chairman may make such orders as he considers to be reasonably required in the interest of defense, public order, public safety, public health, the running of essential services or to prevent violation of rights and freedom of other persons.

This meant, since our demonstration was peaceful, and did not violate any of the interests of the people of Ghana as stated in subsection (7) of the Public Order Act 491, the US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition was legally within its rights to continue with its planning of the demonstration because we had not received a court order to prohibit the citizens of Ghana from demonstrating.

On 21st September 2011, as we set off on the demonstration, there was still no sign of the Ghana Police Service, nor were we made aware of a court order to prohibit the demonstration; making the demonstration legal.

However, in the middle of the demonstration at the Ghana Broadcasting Company station two vehicles of the Ghana Police Service drove in front of the demonstrators and spoke to one of the marchers. The demonstration of people continued on, and after about 100 metres several police vehicles stopped in front of the demonstration and presented a court order dated 16th March 2011, signed by H/H patience Mills Tetteh (Mrs.) Circuit Judge, which stated:

"It is hereby ordered that the organization calling itself US/NATO HANDS OFF and HANDS OFF AFRICA COALITION are hereby prohibited from demonstrating on 21st September, 2011. It is further ordered that the intended demonstration could come on at a later date when police have been notified."

Aside from the incorrect spelling of the Coalition's name, the contradictions and the abuse of Ghanaian citizen’s rights are clear. If the US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition received a phone call on 15th September and the written police response to the coalition’s notification on the 16th of September 2011, requesting the Coalition to comply with a change of date (the police letter is dated 12th September and no phone call was made until 15th September to the Coalition), why would the court order a prohibition on the same date, not allowing the Coalition to exercise its constitutional right based on the Public Order Act 491/94 to comply in 48 hours.

Secondly, why did the police withhold the court order for five days without informing the Coalition that an injunction on the demonstration had been issued?

Thirdly, why wouldn’t the police issue a court order to prohibit the demonstration at the beginning of the march to prevent any violence, as opposed to in the middle of the march—if they were interested in public order, public safety, public health, the running of essential services or to prevent violation of rights and freedom of other persons [and all Ghanaians including the demonstrators].

Fourthly, why wasn’t the US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition allowed to redress the court to express their opinion with regard to the change of date and minutiae of the demonstration? Fifthly, since the demonstration discontinued their march at the point of being issued a court order prohibiting the demonstration, why were they arrested?

This illustrates that Ghana Police Service harboured ill feelings toward the demonstration with the intent of inflicting violence and bodily harm on Ghanaian citizens during the legal demonstration. The evidence was displayed during the arrest of the demonstrators when three armoured vehicles with 20 to 30 police officers with riot gear armed with guns and tear gas guns passed by as demonstrators were being beaten, shoved to the ground, placards were roughly removed from the demonstrators hands and electric tasers were used to seize and destroy video equipment and film (particularly one E-TV cameraman who was tasered repeatedly and his genitals were also violently abused by the police to destroy his film of the purported court order being presented half way during the legal demonstration but dated five days prior) and to demobilize some of the demonstrators.

There was also three Pajeros (suv) filled with police officers who drove in a straight line with the armoured vehicles that were ready and poised for violence as 24 demonstrators were illegally arrested whisked away through the streets of Accra, with sirens blasting, to the Regional Command Police Office of Accra.

This evidence of over 100 police riding in vehicles passing by the demonstrators ready to inflict violence on a peaceful demonstration, debunks the lie of the Regional Command Police Office who stated there were not enough police to provide security and protect the constitutional right of Ghanaian citizens to demonstrate.

The demonstrators were unlawfully detained for almost two days at the Regional Headquarters of the Accra Police and the Bureau of National investigations (BNI)—stripped searched thrown into mosquito infested prison cells, with no light and made to sleep on the floor on a thinly sponge mattress.

The other contradiction, which makes the injustice abundantly and crystal clear, is that the Regional Command Police Service of Accra was intent on violating the constitutional rights to demonstrate with what’s stated in the court order in that "the intended demonstration could come on at a later date when police have been notified."

This was impossible because the court order was served in the middle of the demonstration which left no time for the US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition to notify the police of a later date. This was a miscarriage of justice and an US embassy induced abortion of the rights of Ghana’s citizens.

The injustices of the police actions are clear, but the underlying reasons for their actions are just as revealing, so far as Ghanaian citizens constitutional rights are concerned. The Regional Commander met with US diplomats inside their embassy, who made it clear, in no uncertain terms, that they forbid any demonstrators from coming near their embassy.

The U.S. is the neo-colonial power in Ghana who has large investments in the gold, oil and diamond industries—the U.S. imports billions of dollars of finished products and machinery into Ghana. The U.S. and European capitalist class determine the price of cocoa on the international market. Ghana is in debt to US controlled financial institutions (International Monetary Fund and World Bank)—these institutions also determine the value of the cedi—Ghana’s currency.

The government of Ghana has signed military agreements with US Africa Command (Africom) in which the US uses Ghana’s air force base as an exercise reception facility to train Ghanaian troops and other troops in West Africa. The U.S. has an Oil Hub Initiative for the US military to protect its oil interest in Ghana, and Ghanaian military officers are trained in the School of the America’s in the United States. The U.S. also has a program in which it gives grants to the government of Ghana to purchase its weapons.

Since the demonstration was a "Qathafi Victory March" in support of the Libyan Jamahiriya against the U.S. NATO invasion and bombing of Libya, in opposition to the Ghanaian government’s recognition of the National Transitional Council (NTC), who are mostly made up of CIA trained Al-Qaeda terrorist mercenaries, and stopping the ethnic genocide and illegal imprisoning of Ghanaians in Libya and other black Africans by the NTC, the U.S. exerted its power and influence over the Ghanaian Police Service by threatening sniper fire and bullets against Ghanaian citizens.

They may have also used bribe or a conditioned willingness; in all cases the economic interest of the U.S. was made dominant over the constitutional rights of Ghanaians citizens. This is similar to the U.S. oil company Kosmo’s illegal sale of its oil shares to Exxon Mobile and release of information about Ghana’s oil discoveries which were also violations of Ghana’s law.

This demonstrates that the struggle against U.S. NATO bombing of Libya to steal their oil, and the Ghanaian masses opposition to U.S. imposed neo-colonialism which is stealing their oil and gold, is one and the same. In the final analysis, however, the U.S. oil and gold interest in Ghana, America’s drive for Libya’s oil, and recognition of the CIA trained Al-Qaeda terrorist mercenaries of the NTC is what made the government of Ghana tow the US line of violence and forced repression of lawful decent, in opposition to the constitutional right of the citizens to peaceful demonstration and freedom of expression.

The Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) is on the U.S. State Department list of Foreign Terrorist Organization as of 2004, and Abdel Hakim Belhadj, the founder of LIFG is the Tripoli Military Commander for security of the NTC. The LIFG fought against the Soviets in Afghanistan in the early 1990s along side of Al-Qaeda and was supported and trained by the CIA. They came back to Libya and fought armed clashes with Qathafi security forces, attempted to overthrow the Jamahiriya, and tried to assassinate Qathafi on several occasions.

LIFG merged with Al-Qaeda in November 3, 2007. In 2007 the Combating Terrorism Center at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in their West Point Analysts statistical study of Al-Qaeda records revealed that Libya provided more foreign terrorist fighters in per capita than any other country.

Further evidence shows from cables of wikileaks of the U.S. State Department to its embassy in Tripoli in 2008 entitled “Extremism in Eastern Libya” that anti-American terrorist were rife in this part of Libya. These are the forces that make up the NTC that the Ghanaian government has recognized as the government of Libya.

The NTC may one day send Al Qaeda and LIFG trained terrorists disguised as diplomats to Ghana to recruit Ghanaians with money to terrorize the country with bombings; endangering the security of Ghana (this is a danger throughout Africa).

When the government of Ghana recognizes an undemocratic terrorist government in Libya (NTC) that is committing ethnic genocide against Ghanaians and other black Africans just to please its U.S. masters, and is willing to usurp the constitutional rights of its own citizens in Ghana which undermines democracy, we may ask, are we actually free with sovereignty, or are we a foot stool of America’s foreign policy? Oagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah stated: "The independence of Ghana is meaningless unless it is linked with the total liberation of Africa."

Are we a nation of laws whose priority is the protection, security, and safety of its own citizens, or are we a vassal nation fashioned to protect the profits and interests of U.S. imperialism?

Until these questions are answered there will remain "Dark Days in Ghana". Unless we mobilize and organize to remove US neo-colonialism from Ghana and fight to uphold Africa's last remaining Pan-Africanist and socialist government in Libya (the living embodiment of an Nkrumahist state) our problems will continue.

For Osagyefo Dr. Kwame Nkrumah states: "organization decides everything." Every Ghanaian and every African must be in an organization working to remove the vestiges of U.S. and European neo-colonialism from our land, so as to bring in existence an All African Union Government under socialism!

US/NATO Hands off Libya! Hands off Africa! coalition organizations include:

Ghana Muslim Students Association – Islamic University College Ghana (GMSA)
All African People’s Revolutionary Party (AAPRP)
Nation of Islam (NOI)
Pan African Improvement Organization (PANIO)
Progressive Movement for Change (PMC)
Coalition Against Foreign Intervention In Africa (CAFIA)
Pan African Youth Movement (PAYMO)
Muslim Youth for Positive Change