Sunday, January 29, 2006

US Government Through the National Endowment for Democracy Funnels Millions of Dollars to Influence Haitian Elections

About two years after the overthrow of Aristide in Haiti, the nation will hold national elections next month. The top candidate is pro Aristide candidate Rene Preval.

The National Endowment for Democracy was set up in the early 1980s under President Reagan, in the wake of all the negative revelations about the CIA in the second half of the 1970s. The latter was a remarkable period. Spurred by Watergate-the Church Committee of the Senate, the Pike Committee of the House and the Rockefeller commission, created by the president, were all busy investigating the CIA. Seemingly every other day there was a headline about the discovery of some awful thing, even criminal conduct, the CIA had been mixed up in for years. The Agency was getting an exceedingly bad name, and it was causing the powers-that-be much

Something had to be done. What was done was not to stop doing these
awful things. Of course not. What was done was to shift many of these
awful things to a new organization, with a nice sounding name-the
National Endowment for Democracy. The idea was that the NED would do
somewhat overtly what the CIA had been doing covertly for decades, and
thus, hopefully, eliminate the stigma associated with CIA covert
activities. It is a way to launder funds, that would formerly go to the CIA, to a non government agency (ngo).

The Endowment donated a quarter-million dollars of taxpayers' money to the Cuban-American National Fund, the ultra-fanatic anti-Castro Miami group. The CANF, in turn, financed Luis Posada Carriles, one of the most prolific and pitiless terrorists of modern times, who was involved in the blowing up of a Cuban airplane in 1976, which killed 73 people. In 1997, he was involved in a series of
bomb explosions in Havana hotels.

The NED operates with an annual budget of $80 million dollars from U.S. Congress and the State Department. In Venezuela, it's given money to several political opponents of President Hugo Chavez. With elections underway in Haiti, it's reportedly doing the same to groups linked to the country's tiny elite and former military.

It was exposed last month that an Associated Press reporter, funded by NED, was sending reports from Haiti. She has since been terminated.

According to Canadian Journalist Anthony Fenton, who has written a new book Canada in Haiti: Waging War on the Poor Majority, "So you see this family meeting on a weekly basis, coordinating their activities. They’re funneling millions of dollars to the political parties, by way of giving them credits for TV advertising, for pamphlets, for t-shirts and all sorts of other activities. And, of course, this is all geared towards -- they're hoping, I think, right now, that there will be a run-off election, sort of like there was in Liberia, where the International Republican Institute and these other organizations played a central role, as well, because if there’s a run-off election -- and it’s possible that one of their rightwing candidates, perhaps such as Marc Bazin, who's running under the Lavalas name today, but of course was a World Bank candidate that Aristide beat in a landslide in 1990 -- they're hoping that one of these candidates, maybe it'll be Henri Baker, will be able to win in a run-off."

For more info see: Democracy Now, Le Colonal Chabert and No Simple Matter. RENEGADE EYE

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Argentine Tango: Etiquette

To experienced dancers, the following guidelines of Tango dance protocol and etiquette are usually well known, but not often discussed. Also following these guidelines sets a good example for other dancers. For new dancers, it's good to know what's what to help avoid embarrassing, awkward, or unsafe situations. In any case, following these guidelines can help to maximize your Tango dance experience.

1. At a Tango milonga (a Tango dance party), couples dance Tango in a "line-of-dance" fashion, counter-clockwise around the dance floor. The faster "lanes" are those toward the outside of the counter-clockwise line-of-dance. The slower "lanes" are toward the center. As you dance, refrain from cutting across these lanes, cutting through the center, and dancing backward to the line-of-dance especially on a crowded dance floor.

2. If you are not dancing, show respect to those who are by not walking through the busy dance floor and by staying clear of the dance space. For example, while others are dancing, do not stand in the dance lanes and talk. On the dance floor, real estate is always in demand. First prioity goes to the dance and the dancers. Give them room.

3. If you are trying to show your partner a new step, move to a distant corner or non-dance area for your demonstration and discussion. It is the mark of an inexperienced or inconsiderate dancer to stop and attempt to teach a partner a new step at a milonga during a dance on the dance floor. Avoid doing this. Save your instruction for a "Practica", that is, a dance practice session.

4. The safety of your partner, yourself, and the surrounding dancers is your first concern. Both leader and follower should always be alert to the presence of other dancers infront, to the sides, and in back to help avoid collisions. If a collision occurs, try to soften the collision by bringing your arms in and stopping movement. Afterwards be polite and friendly, make eye contact and acknowledge the collision even if it was not your fault. To a large extent, dancing on a crowded Tango dance floor is an exercise in avoiding collisions in a safe, creative, and fun fashion. One other point that often goes unmentioned, it may sound and feel very poetic to dance in the "Tango Trance" with your eyes closed, but at a crowed milonga avoid doing this. Keep yours eyes open and be alert to the safty of your partner and other dancers. As a dancer at a social event this is part of your responsibility.

5. No one likes being kicked, run into, or stepped on, so on a crowded dance floor, avoid aggressive movements, high boleos, hard-hitting ganchos, and leg extensions. If you feel you are about to step on someone, hopefully not your partner, try to not follow through with the stepping action to soften the blow of your foot landing on another's. Also, leaders keep your left arm down and about shoulder height with your left elbow down and fairly close to your side. It's not fun on a crowded dance floor having to duck when another dancer swings around with their partner and the leads left hand is three feet in the air and three inches from your nose.

6. On a crowded dance floor, stopping in the outer lane to do a dance pattern is frowned on since it usually stops the forward progress of the dancers coming from behind and many times it usually involves steps that are not safe to the surrounding dancers. Remember, it's not the Olympics or "show time", it's a social dance, so relax and have fun. If you feel the need to stop forward movement to do a couple of patterns, move to the center of the floor where you can stop and do, for example, foot stops, multiple ochos or molinetes and not stop forward line-of-dance movement.

7. For the leaders, if you absolutely must step backwards to the line-of-dance, look back first. For the followers, as a dance pattern unfolds, be alert to dancers potentially in the way and let the leader know of a possible collision verbally, pressing your left hand to the leader's back, by a hand squeeze, or by pulling your partner closer, or all of these, especially on a crowded dance floor.

8. If a dance couple in front of you stops, then either dance around them, mark time or use a Tango side-rocking step, for example, to continue dancing until they move.

9. Followers, do not backlead. Not only does it make leading more difficult, but it also makes it more difficult for the leader to avoid collisions.

10. It's ok to smile and have fun on the Tango dance floor. The Tango police have stopped giving citations for this, at least in the San Francisco Bay Area.

11. For more experienced dancers, set a good example for beginners: be patient, polite and sensitive. It is acceptable to give advice, provided it is asked for first, or provided you first ask permission to make an "observation" or a "comment". Remember you where once a beginner. A harsh or insensitive, but well intended "comment" can still ruin someone's evening.

12. Last but not least, Argentine Tango is an intimate and elegant dance. For a pleasent experience, good hygiene is essential; bathe before lessons or dancing and use deodorant. Use breath fresheners frequently. No or minimal talking while dancing; focus on dancing and floor traffic. Hold off on the aftershave and perfume. Some people are sensitive to them. If you perspire, use a towel or handkerchief often. People as a rule don't like dance partners that are walking wet towels (in the literal sense.) So men, if you perspire heavily, use a towel, take a break and cool down, bring an extra shirt, and change into it at halftime. This is social dance, go to the track if you want an aerobic workout. If you wear glasses, consider contact lenses or removing your glasses while dancing unless you can't see where you're dancing. Getting whacked in the head with someone glasses as they turn their head is not pleasent. One last thing, PLEASE, no jeans, sweat shirts, tennis shoes, or other similar causal attire when you take lessons or go to a dance. Tango is an elegant dance, respect it and other dancers, dress up.

See: InScenes Magazine.


Sunday, January 22, 2006

CIA: Homepage For Kids

In commerce to hook future consumers, you start educating children to your product. Only in America, the clandestine arm of government has a page for children from Kindergarden to 5th grade.

Your kids are invited to visit the CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia with Ginger, which is short for Virginia. Children can play the code breaking game called Cold Warriors. Decipher words as Berlin Wall, courage and George Bush.

Learn about the CIA canine corps, with characters Dallas, Tiwoz, Gerro, Whisper, Maggie, Zoltan, Nikky or Orry, and the twins Harry (named after Truman)and Aerial, and their minature cameras.

Conspicuous by their absence was; The Valerie Plame Blame Game, The Overthrow A Government for United Fruit Game, or Assasin's Target Game.

See: DIRELAND, Open Democracy and CIA's Homepage for Kids. RENEGADE EYE

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Christopher Hitchens Joins ACLU Suit vs. NSA Spying

Statement - Christopher Hitchens, NSA Lawsuit Client

Although I am named in this suit on my own behalf, I am motivated to join it by concerns well beyond my own. I have been frankly appalled by the discrepant and contradictory positions taken by the Administration in this matter. First, the entire existence of the NSA's monitoring was a secret, and its very disclosure denounced as a threat to national security.
Then it was argued that Congress had already implicitly granted the power to conduct warrantless surveillance on the territory of the United States, which seemed to make the reason for the original secrecy more rather than less mysterious. (I think we may take it for granted that our deadly enemies understand that their communications may be intercepted.)

This makes it critically important that we establish an understood line, and test the cases in which it may or may not be crossed.

Let me give a very direct instance of what I mean. We have recently learned that the NSA used law enforcement agencies to track members of a pacifist organisation in Baltimore. This is, first of all, an appalling abuse of state power and an unjustified invasion of privacy, uncovered by any definition of "national security" however expansive. It is, no less importantly, a stupid diversion of scarce resources from the real target. It is a certainty that if all the facts were known we would become aware of many more such cases of misconduct and waste.

We are, in essence, being asked to trust the state to know best. What reason do we have for such confidence? The agencies entrusted with our protection have repeatedly been shown, before and after the fall of 2001, to be conspicuous for their incompetence and venality. No serious reform of these institutions has been undertaken or even proposed: Mr George Tenet (whose underlings have generated leaks designed to sabotage the Administration's own policy of regime-change in Iraq, and whose immense and unconstitutionally secret budget could not finance the infiltration of a group which John Walker Lindh could join with ease) was awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

I believe the President when he says that this will be a very long war, and insofar as a mere civilian may say so, I consider myself enlisted in it. But this consideration in itself makes it imperative that we not take panic or emergency measures in the short term, and then permit them to become institutionalised. I need hardly add that wire-tapping is only one of the many areas in which this holds true.

The better the ostensible justification for an infringement upon domestic liberty, the more suspicious one ought to be of it. We are hardly likely to be told that the government would feel less encumbered if it could dispense with the Bill of Rights. But a power or a right, once relinquished to one administration for one reason, will unfailingly be exploited by successor administrations, for quite other reasons. It is therefore of the first importance that we demarcate, clearly and immediately, the areas in which our government may or may not treat us as potential enemies.

This was published as a blog on The Huffington Post and in the ACLU Online Newspaper.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Did Bush Want To Bomb Al Jazeera??

Was George Bush planning to commit an illegal act, against non-combatants?

Al Jazeera Satellite Network, has hired a London based legal team, to discover if George Bush advocated bombing the Qatar based headquarters of Al Jazeera. The legal action will ask the British government to release a memo using a version of the freedom of information act, a five page document, labeled top secret, where the conversation between Bush and Tony Blair is documented, where Bush tried to get the bombing on the table. Qatar is also home to the US Central Command, and several US citizens live there.

Al Jazeera has also asked the US government, to release whatever is available in US.

From what is known about the memo, George Bush seriously wanted to take military action against Al Jazeera, only that Tony Blair and Colin Powell, talked him out of it.

On another front, in a court in London, two men will appear to face charges under Britain's Official Secrets Act. The first man, David Keogh, a former employee of the Cabinet Office, is accused of unlawfully handing a confidential memorandum to the second man, Leo O'Connor, a researcher for a former Labor member of Parliament, Tony Clarke. They are accused of making damaging revelations related to international relationships.

See: Christopher Hitchens Slate Article and Sky News On Al Jazeera Legal Action RENEGADE EYE

Thursday, January 12, 2006


The game is played like this: You are allowed to ask one question, to anyone living or dead. The question is started with, "What were you thinking when------?"

I'll start the game. A question to Ronald Reagan. What were you thinking when you knew and never spoke or provided leadership before 36,058 Americans had been diagnosed with AIDS and 20,849 had died. The disease had spread to 113 countries, with more than 50,000 cases, and you didn't make any statement, until the last year of your term? The first modern case was diagnosed in 1981.

What is your What were you Thinking question??????

Thank you BBC World Sevice International.
Renegade Eye

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Hugo Chavez: Anti-Semite???

According to a "Global Jewish News" press release;

Chavez makes anti-Semitic slur

Venezuela’s president said in his Christmas speech that “the descendants of those who crucified Christ” own the riches of the world.
“The world offers riches to all. However, minorities such as the descendants of those who crucified Christ” have become “the owners of the riches of the world,” Chavez said Dec. 24 on a visit to a rehabilitation center in the Venezuelan countryside.

According to a 01/05/06 AP Wire: Simon Wiesenthal Center has condemned the "anti-Semite" remarks by Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and asked for "retraction and public apologies" according to a press release of the Jewish entity with a Latin American chapter located in Buenos Aires.

According to the press release, on last December 24th, Chávez stated: "The world is for everybody, but it turned out that some minorities, the descendants of the same who crucified Christ, took possession of the world wealth."

"Two central arguments of anti-Semitism converge in these remarks -charging the Jewish with killing Jesus and linking them with wealth," the Center stated in a letter sent to Chávez.

"Both components have been used as the perfect excuse to justify the cruelest chasing and bloodshed throughout two millenniums," the letter signed by Shimon Samuels, directors of International Affairs of Wiesenthal Center, and Sergio Widder, representative for Latin America, underscored, as quoted by AFP.

Samuels and Widder added that they would call the governments of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, the parties to the Southern Market (Mercosur) "to stay the process of Venezuela's incorporation in the regional block provided that Chávez shall not apologize in public."

Let's look at what he said. This is the original Spanish version.

"El mundo tiene para todos, pues, pero
resulta que unas minorías, los descendientes de los mismos que crucificaron a Cristo, los descendientes de los mismos que echaron a Bolívar de aquí y también lo
crucificaron a su manera en Santa Marta, allá en Colombia. Una minoría se adueñó de las riquezas del mundo, una minoría se adueñó del oro del planeta, de la plata, de los minerales, de las aguas, de las tierras buenas, del petróleo, de las riquezas,pues, y han concentrado las riquezas en pocas manos: menos del diez por ciento de
la población del mundo es dueña de más de la mitad de la riqueza de todo el mundo y a la...más de la mitad de los pobladores del planeta son pobres y cada día hay más pobres en el mundo entero."

Go to Google or AltaVista robot translation, you will see he is not talking about Jews or Romans, or Jewish people killing Christ. He is talking socialist allegorical rhetoric in a universal way.

Another day in discrediting the anti-Chavezistas.

Thank you Unrepentant Marxist and LE REVUE GAUCHE.


Saturday, January 07, 2006

LOU RAWLS 1935-2006

“sweet as sugar, soft as velvet, strong as steel, smooth as butter.”

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Spain To Offer Asylum To Sexual Refugees

According to the Spanish newspaper El Pais, Spain will be offering amnesty to victims of sexual or gender oppression.

The draft of the new law was leaked to El Pais. Spanish Premier Jose Luis Zapatero's Socialist government, will have the most progressive asylum law in the world. It is good news for victims of the Iranian mullah's antigay public hangings, women who face death for self expression etc.

The policy is based on the 1951 Geneva Convention's antisexual repression statutes.

In another event Premier Jose Luis Zapatero recently gave a speech in support of gay unions, before Spain's gay marriage law passed. It was the strongest gay rights speech ever given by a world leader.

More info read: Spanish Asylum