lørdag den 28. februar 2009

USA ud af Irak?

Barack Obama blev som bekendt valgt til præsident bl.a. på at appellere til krigsmodstanden i USA, som er betydeligt stærkere end man skulle tro når man læser danske medier.

Nu lyder det så, at han (Obama) 'opfylder sit valgløfte', og trækker de amerikanske tropper hjem fra det krigsplagede land.

Fx: i Politiken:

USA’s præsident Barack Obama har erklæret, at de amerikanske kampoperationer i landet skal være afsluttet 31. august 2010.


Det er korrekt at Obamas politik indebærer en væsentlig reduktion i antallet af amerikanske soldater i Irak, men det er derimod lodret forkert, at der skulle være tale om, at USA trækker sig ud af Irak, eller at kampoperationerne er afsluttet.

For det første, skal der stadig være op til 50.000 amerikanske soldater i Irak efter tilbagetrækningen(ord har ligesom ikke rigtig længere nogen mening).

For det andet, var det i starten ikke meningen at det begrænsede antal tropper der skulle være tilbage efter tilbagetrækningen (som altså nu er 50.000!), skulle være involverede i kampoperationer... men som det ser ud nu:

New York Times:

While most of the troops remaining after August 2010 would be in support roles, some would still be serving in combat as they conducted counterterrorism missions.

“I think a limited number of those that remain will conduct combat operations against terrorists, assisting Iraqi security forces,” said Geoff Morrell, the Pentagon press secretary, summarizing past descriptions of the new mission offered by administration and Defense Department officials.


Den meget omtalte Status of Forces Agreement(SOFA) - mesterligt gennemgået af Poya Pakzad her - er så fuld af smuthuller, at det overhovedet ikke giver mening at tale om en tilbagetrækning; det der derimod sker er, at de amerikanske soldater flytter sig væk fra byerne, og ud på de permanente baser, som er skudt op rundt omkring i landet, om som det hele tiden har været meningen skulle være rammen om den massive amerikanske, militære tilstedeværelse i et land som aldrig har været en trussel mod USA.

Uddrag af raport fra Global Security:

On 23 March 2004 it was reported that "U.S. engineers are focusing on constructing 14 "enduring bases," long-term encampments for the thousands of American troops expected to serve in Iraq for at least two years.... The number of U.S. military personnel in Iraq, between 105,000 and 110,000, is expected to remain unchanged through 2006.. the US plans to operate from former Iraqi bases in Baghdad, Mosul, Taji, Balad, Kirkuk and in areas near Nasiriyah, near Tikrit, near Fallujah and between Irbil and Kirkuk... enhance airfields in Baghdad and Mosul..."

By May 2005 the Washington Post reported that plans called for consolidating American troops in Iraq into four large air bases: Tallil in the south, Al Asad in the west, Balad in the center and either Irbil or Qayyarah in the north. Eventually, US units would be concentrated at these four fortified strategic hubs, from which they could provide logistical support and emergency combat assistance. Each base would support a brigade combat team, along with aviation and other support personnel.

Initially referred to as "enduring bases" in 2004, these four bases were redesignated as "Contingency Operating Bases" in February 2005. The consolidation plan entails construction of long-lasting facilities, such as barracks and offices built of concrete blocks, rather than the metal trailers and buildings that are found at the larger US bases. The buildings are designed to withstand direct mortar strikes. Initial funding was provided in the $82 billion supplemental appropriations bill approved by Congress in May 2005.

The longer term plan for US Central Command calls for "strategic overwatch" from bases in Kuwait.

As of mid-May 2005 it was reported that US forces occupied a total of 106 bases. These ranged in size from the massive Camp Victory complex near the Baghdad airport, to small outposts with as few as 500 soldiers. The US also operates four detention facilities and several other convoy support centers.



Derudover skal beslutningen om reducere antallet af soldater, ses i lyset af, at der skal tilføjes yderligere 17.000 amerikanske soldater til den allerede katastrofale besættelse af Afghanistan.

Change we can believe in?

torsdag den 26. februar 2009

Naivisme 1

I den senere tid har jeg forsømt min blog en anelse, da jeg har kastet mig ud i at opdatere Viva Palestina bloggen (mange tak til The O-Zone for at gøre reklame!).

Men dét betyder jo ikke, at tankerne holder op med at flyve omkring... og jo mere jeg forsøger at fokusere, jo mere flyvsk bliver det...

Dét jeg prøver at få hold på, er måske så grundlæggende, at man normalt ikke gider spilde tid på at tænke over det... men det burde man måske?

Hvorfor er nogle lande fattige?
Hvorfor er arbejdsløsheden større i nogle lande end andre?
Handelsbalancen: Da jeg i sin tid var en ung, uskyldig studerende, der bl.a. blev fodret med økonomi, var mantraet, at eksporten altid skal være større end importen, så man har overskud på handelsbalancen... men man skal jo ikke være atomfysiker for at indse, at det ganske simpelt er en umulighed, at ALLE lande kan eksportere mere end de importerer.

så, her for første gang: en opfordring til debat, inputs, kommentarer. Gør mig klogere!

søndag den 15. februar 2009

Venezuela update

Overskrift i Politikens netavis i dag:
Chavez vil være evighedspræsident (link)

Jeg minder i al stilfærdighed om, at det der er tale om, er at Chavez forsøger at få vedtaget en forfatningsændring, der vil medføre at han kan blive genvalgt flere end de 2 gange han allerede har siddet. Præcis som en statsminister kan i Danmark, eller en premiereminister kan i England.

Læs evt. min tidligere blog-post om emnet:
Et mini-studie i fordrejning: Venezuela og Chavez i danske medier

mandag den 2. februar 2009

Ray McGoverns tale til Frank Grevils prisoverrækkelse

Ray McGovern er tidligere CIA-analytiker, og medstifter af V.I.P.S (Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity). De uddeler hvert år en pris til en whistle-blower.

Her følger Ray McGoverns (uforkortede) tale til prisoverrækkelsen i Politikens Hus forleden (se her)



On Jan. 26 in Copenhagen, I had the privilege to present to former Danish intelligence officer, Frank Grevil, the annual Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence.

The late Sam Adams was a CIA analyst colleague who challenged the "fixing" of intelligence during the Vietnam War.

Thirty-five years later, as we again watched the corruption of intelligence amid the drumbeat for war on Iraq, a small group of Sam's former colleagues formed Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence. Our purpose was not only to honor Sam's memory; it was also to show future generations of intelligence officers that it is possible—actually, it is morally required—to expose the lies that facilitate war.

In 2002-2003, our profession of intelligence analysis was systematically corrupted in order to deceive Congress out of its Constitutional prerogative to authorize war. This also happened elsewhere in the "coalition of the willing"—in London, Canberra, and Copenhagen. Sadly, out of the hundreds of "coalition" intelligence officers aware that war was being "justified" on false pretenses, only two—Elizabeth Gun in the U.K. and Frank Grevil in Denmark—provided documentary evidence exposing the mandacity of their governments.

Both were brought to trial for exposing secrets. The British government quickly realized that proceeding against Katharine Gun was not worth the inevitable embarrassment. In Copenhagen, vindictive officials with guilty consciences sent Grevil to jail.

There is no need to rehabilitate Frank Grevil. There is a need to honor him. And so, with heartwarming help from that segment of the Danish populace who care about speaking truth to power, we gave Grevil the Sam Adams Award. Katharine Gun read the citation and presented the actual award, while I chaired the ceremony.

In an attempt to do the occasion justice, I prepared the remarks set forth below, from which I drew in an attempt to provide background. As you will see, I found the whole subject so dim and dismal that I thought I would start with a light-hearted approach—however incongruous. My remarks follow:

Thank you, one and all, for coming this evening at such short notice and in such encouraging numbers. Our first order of business is the presenting of the Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence (SAAII) award to former Danish intelligence officer, Maj. Frank Grevil.

You each have a handout [available on request] explaining who former CIA analyst Sam Adams was, and why we, his former colleagues, created this movement in his memory. Representing the Sam Adams Associates, I have the privilege, together with former British Intelligence officer Katharine Gun, who received the award in 2004, to honor Frank Grevil with the sixth annual Sam Adams Award.

We are grateful to the Danish newspaper Politiken for making the hall available and for publishing notice of this event. Following the award ceremony proper, Politiken journalist Claus Blok Thomsen will moderate the Politiken-sponsored part of the evening. That will include, we expect, a free and lively discussion with Q&A, after brief presentations by Katharine, Frank, and me. But first let me say a word regarding why I feel truly honored to present this award to Maj. Frank Grevil.

Hans Christian Andersen and Shakespeare

Whenever I come to Denmark, ringing in my ears are the wonderful stories with which your Hans Christian Andersen gifted the world. Not to mention the words that The Bard put in the mouths of his vivid characters in Hamlet, set in Denmark.

First, Hans Christian Andersen (we shall get to Shakespeare later): Most of you will remember the story about the king's "Magic Suit of Clothes." The American actor Danny Kaye immortalized that story on film. As a boy, I memorized much of his musical rendition of those tales and I now sing them to our grandchildren.

What follows is a kind of allegory with, I think, some teaching points.

Once upon a time, in a land far away…no, not far away, but here, in this land, Denmark…there was a king, who was simply insane about new clothes, because he thought they would enhance the distinguished image he craved. Well, one day swindlers came to see the king—there is an unconfirmed report that they came from the American embassy. In any case, they came to persuade the king to buy a suit made out of whole cloth—a suit they said was a "magic suit."

Now, in truth, as they held up the supposed raiment, there was nothing there at all. But the swindlers were very clever. They told the king—or was it the prime minister?—that this was a magic suit and only a wise man would recognize this. To a fool the suit would be invisible.

Most important, they said the suit was distinctive for its so-called "weapons of mass destruction," and that if the king were a wise man he could readily see them in the fine fabric woven by clothier Bush Blair Rumsfeld Ltd.

And not only that: They said the king could have the suit for free. All he had to do was vouch strongly and publicly for the existence of these weapons. And, if he did this on a specific date chosen by the clothier, he could then become a best buddy of Bush and Blair.

Moreover, then Bush would come and spend the night in the Danish kingdom. And, best of all, then could the Danish king—or was it the prime minister?—be invited to travel across the sea to Crawford Castle in the kingdom of Texas to have his photo taken there with Bush, and with Danish and American flags waving briskly in the background.

There were just a few other things the king should know, said the swindlers. A small war would be involved, and the king would be required to bring his country into it. The king would also be required to endorse the pretext for war precisely on the day before it started. This was the script the king—or was it the prime minister?—needed to memorize and assert publicly on that fateful eve:

"Iraq has weapons of mass destruction. This is not something we just believe. We know."

The swindlers persuaded the vain king that "justifying" the war would be a "Schlammdunk," and that this wee war of aggression would be a "Kuchenwalk"—suggesting ease in conjuring up a casus belli, and in achieving a quick and easy victory. Best of all, his country was sure to be on the winning side and he would be invited to march in the very first row of the victory parade.

Now the king, not wanting to appear a fool, saw at once that the magic suit was fairly bristling with weapons of mass deception—sorry, I mean destruction. He enthusiastically joined the chorus of Sir Tony of Blair and other dodgy nobles who had been so ready to see the invisible. The king donned the suit and ordered a practice parade as a kind of rehearsal for the eventual victory parade.

The day for the rehearsal arrived, and the streets were lined with thousands and thousands of people. They had heard the story of the magic suit and wished to see it—and appear wise—like the king. And so they all were cheering like mad. That is, all but one fellow named Frank Grevil.

Now, it is understood that no one wants to appear completely out of step—and particularly not at a celebratory parade. And so Major Grevil strained his eyes and directed his considerable analytical skills toward the king in his "magic suit"…and was shocked.

Grevil shouted:

"Look at the king! The king is in the altogether, he's altogether as naked as the day that he was born.

"The king is in the altogether; it's altogether the very least the king has ever worn!

"Call the court physician; call an intermission. The king is wide open to ridicule and scorn!

"The king is in the altogether, and it's altogether too chilly a morn."

The disruption caused by this burst of honesty was most unwelcome. You see, everyone but Grevil—whether nobles like Sir Tony of Blair or commoners—had their own reasons for going along with the king and pretending to see the WMD. And so they did.

And thus began this nasty little war against people of darker hue who happened to swim on a sea of oil. But, alas, no victory parade is now envisaged. Bush Blair Rumsfeld Ltd, has declared bankruptcy and is no longer weaving garments out of whole cloth for governments to use.

Worse by far: hundreds of thousands died. And there were very, very few who lived "happily ever after."

The Supreme Irony

One who did live through all this—and happily, it would seem—was the prime minister—oops, I mean the king. I mean the one who thought it politically wise to claim, despite the lack of real evidence, that he knew that weapons of mass destruction were in Iraq. I mean the one who thus shares moral responsibility for the carnage that ensued.

You will find this hard to believe, but the king sits on the throne still to this day. [Anders Fogh Rasmussen was Denmark's prime minister at the time of the Iraq invasion, and still is.] The great majority of his subjects are either unaware of his duplicity, or prefer to ignore or deny it. What comes off the printing presses makes little mention of it.

What about Frank Grevil, the one who called attention to the king's nakedness? His reward? Four months in prison.

We are grateful for the Grevils of this world. We call them whistleblowers—people of integrity and courage who buck the tide and refuse to be intimidated or silenced. The good they do usually goes unheralded. It is, nevertheless good—and worth doing—because it is good. The results, as history shows, are not always in the hands of the truth tellers.

The whole-cloth clothier, Bush Blair Rumsfeld Ltd, was right about one thing; i. e., there IS evil in the world. And the Briton, Lord Acton, also had it right, when he famously pointed to what lies so often at the core of major evil like wars aggression—little or large. Acton's observation: "Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."

Recognizing what they are up against, some whistleblowers have quipped that their rewards are "out of this world." Black humor aside, there is ample support for that observation in the Biblical tradition from which many of us come. Indeed, people of integrity like Frank Grevil give flesh to the Biblical assurance: "You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free."

And for that we are all very grateful.

"Something Rotten"

As I landed in Denmark reflecting on Frank Grevil's imprisonment for speaking truth, it struck me there must be "something rotten in Denmark." I had not thought of that quote from Shakespeare in many years, but when it came back into mind, its context came with it.

And I realized I had misquoted Marcellus' remark to Hamlet's friend Horatio. Marcellus says, "Something is rotten in the state of Denmark"—the allusion being to the political hierarchy at the top. He is saying the state of Denmark is like a fish rotting from the head down.

Shakespeare is highlighting the main theme of Hamlet—the connection between the crime of a ruler and the health of the country as a whole. Hamlet's uncle Claudius, King of Denmark, is a calculating, ambitious politician who will stop at nothing in his lust for power. I shall leave it to you to ponder whether there may be any parallels in today's Denmark.

Rot is hardly confined to Denmark. It is as universal and noxious wherever senior officials seek to exercise unbridled power. Legislative oversight committees have become overlook committees. Often, the only brake on the Executive's exercise of power is the whistleblower willing to take risks by pouring light into dark places. And Frank Grevil is not alone in suffering from the abuse of power. In Washington, too, whistleblowers have a price on their heads.

One of our Senators with fascist tendencies, Kit Bond of Missouri, currently vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, has spoken out with special venom against whistleblowers. At last week's confirmation hearings for Dennis Blair, nominated by President Barack Obama to the most senior intelligence post (Director of National Intelligence), Bond pressed the nominee on whether he would try to prosecute leakers of classified information.

Falling in nicely with Bond's proclivities, Blair did not disguise his repugnance toward whistleblowers: "If I could ever catch one of those [leakers], it would be very good to prosecute them. We need to make sure that people who leak are held accountable."

It is, rather, Senators and Directors who need to be held accountable and strongly resist this. And they tend to show their true colors at such hearings. On Aug. 2, 2006, for example, Sen. Bond actually suggested that leakers be Guantanamo-ized: "There is nothing like an orange jumpsuit on a deliberate leaker to discourage others from going down that path," said Bond.

Whistleblower Protection

Dennis Blair has now been confirmed by the Senate, but there is also some good news. On January 29, the House of Representatives voted to strengthen whistleblower protections for federal employees, including those working in national security agencies. The bill's sponsors believe that, if the Senate also approves, President Obama will sign it into law.

Fair warning: the likes of Dennis Blair can be counted on to lobby the Senate strongly against approving this legislation, unless the president gives explicit orders against such lobbying.

Those, like Frank Grevil, whose conscience prompts them to disclose suppressed truth on important matters, will continue to be ostracized—and sometimes imprisoned. There will always be a need for a community of support to give them hope. Sam Adams Associates and those who have been honored with our annual award comprise that kind of community. Previous awardees are Coleen Rowley of the FBI; Katharine Gun of British Intelligence; Sibel Edmonds of the FBI; Craig Murray, former U.K. ambassador to Uzbekistan; and former U.S. Army Sgt. Sam Provance, truth teller about Abu Ghraib.

Thinking again of Hamlet, one might say we have taken to heart the wise advice Polonius gives his son Laertes:

"Those friends thou hast and their adoption tried,
Grapple them unto thy soul with hoops of steel."

It can be very lonely out there. A spirit of community, as well as a heeding of conscience, are what enrich and sustain whistleblower friendship and support. We encourage one another to follow, as Frank Grevil has, the rest of Polonius' advice:

"This above all—
To thine own self be true;
And it must follow
As the night the day,
Thou canst not then
Be false to any man."

Former FBI Special Agent Coleen Rowley, the first recipient of the Sam Adams award, has sent us for this occasion a corollary quote in the vernacular. It is from Texan politician/populist Jim Hightower:

"The opposite of cowardice is not courage, it is conformity. Even a dead fish can go with the flow."

And so we are back to rotten fish.

The Witness of Other Truth Tellers

We are painfully aware of the experience of Frank Grevil. In more fortunate circumstances, whistleblowers have scored major successes. Let me mention a couple, before we give Frank the Sam Adams award.

It has been 50 years since my first extended visit to Europe as a university student. Most of you are too young to remember, but a "wonder-drug," Thalidomide, had just come on the market. This drug gave temporary rest and relief to millions, especially prospective mothers with morning sickness and problems sleeping.

Stationed in Germany more than a decade later, I witnessed the human results of the horrible side effects of Thalidomide, which had become available all over Germany, the rest of Europe, and beyond. Over 10,000 babies in 46 countries were born without limbs or otherwise disfigured and disabled. Those still alive would be in their late forties now. Perhaps you have encountered some of them.

Frances Kelsey

How did the United States escape this plague? One whistleblower, a woman named Frances Kelsey of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration saw through the charade—the magic suit, you might say, of the swindlers from the drug company. Although Doctor Kelsey came under extreme pressure to fall in step and approve the drug, she would not be moved. She exposed this particular magic-suit-type scheme, scorned the testing that had been done by the Thalidomide manufacturer, and blocked introduction of the drug for sale in America.

As the sixties and seventies wore on, the horrible damage caused by the drug made itself known. And what also became clear was the reality that a decade of American babies born whole, with all their limbs, owed a debt of gratitude to Frances Kelsey, whistleblower par excellence. Tom Clark, who did so much to help arrange this evening's event, tells me that he is of that generation, that his mother suffered from morning sickness in bearing him, and that he might well be missing a limb or two today, had his mother been able to purchase Thalidomide in the United States.

Not all were so fortunate. The drug company gave 1.200 American doctors 2.5 million tablets on an "investigational" basis. Oddly, while the stated aim was to confirm the drug's "usefulness," reporting the results was optional. Among the nearly 20,000 patients who were given the Thalidomide tablets in the U.S. were several hundred pregnant women. In the end, 17 American children were born with Thalidomide-related deformities.

This happened to an American friend who took the drug during her second pregnancy. She gave birth to a beautiful son—except that his right arm was missing. All that remained looked like a flipper, a stunted hand with the wrist connected directly to his shoulder.


W. Mark Felt

Just last month, W. Mark Felt, now perhaps the most famous whistleblower in our country's history, died at the age of 95. Felt was the senior FBI official referred to as "Deep Throat," who resisted and exposed the cover-up of the Watergate crimes under President Richard Nixon.

Felt leaked to the press so much damaging information that President Richard Nixon was driven out of office when it became clear that he was trying to be king, rather than president. With help from two young journalists, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, of the Washington Post—a courageous newspaper in those days—a would-be dictator was forced to resign the presidency.

One must make some practical application here in order to explain why Bush and Cheney were permitted to serve out their term. It was the power of the Fawning Corporate Media (FCM) and the cowardice of an invertebrate legislature that were responsible for the fact that these war criminals were not impeached, convicted, and removed from power—a process for which the provident Founders of our country were careful to provide in the Constitution.

Freedom is endangered when there is no truly free and independent Fourth Estate, which the British statesman Edmund Burke called the "most important estate of all." The biggest sea change I have witnessed in the American body politic in the 45 years I have been in Washington is the reality that our country no longer has, in any meaningful sense, a free media. That is, as we say in America, BIG! Perhaps the situation is better here in Denmark?

The morphing of Bob Woodward is perhaps most instructive of all. He kept his explicit promise to Felt to avoid revealing the identity of "Deep Throat" until Felt was dead. Woodward did not, however, keep the implicit promise of an investigative journalist to pursue truth without fear or favor. Rather, like the Neo-craven Washington Post, Woodward made an unconscionable transition from fearless "junkyard dog" to Historian to the Court of George W. Bush and his regent Dick Cheney.

It was the price Woodward would pay for uniquely privileged access to them.

All, including investigative journalists, are vulnerable to the seduction of power—Lord Acton's dictum at work once again.

Sadly, Britain's Lord Goldsmith seems blissfully unaware of Lord Acton's dictum. Or perhaps he set out to prove it. Goldsmith is the U.K Attorney General who conveniently obliged when then-prime minister Tony Blair told him to change his legal opinion on attacking Iraq from illegal to legal.

I am not making this up. An official British memorandum that was leaked to the Sunday Times contains the minutes of a July 23, 2002 meeting with Blair at 10 Downing Street and has become known as the "Downing Street Minutes." They record Goldsmith as saying that "the desire for regime change was not a legal basis for military action." (If you are learning this for the first time, this could mean that the virus of the Fawning Corporate Media—the FCM virus—has now spread from the U.S. to Denmark.)

Elizabeth Wilmshurst

As for the pitiable Lord Goldsmith, the reason his hair often appears so disheveled is that he can no longer look in the mirror. You see, Goldsmith let himself be persuaded to change his mind on the legality of an attack on Iraq. And so did all the lawyers in the Foreign Office—all, that is, but one Elizabeth Wilmshurst, the deputy legal counsel. Wilmshurst had been deeply involved in negotiations with the International Criminal Court regarding crimes of aggression. She knew a war of aggression when she saw one.

Wilmshurst would not go with the flow like the proverbial dead fish. When her boss Michael Wood and her colleagues did a 180-degree collective change of mind on the legality of attacking Iraq, she resigned on March 18, 2003, one day before the war began.

In her letter of resignation, Elizabeth Wilmshurst wrote that she was leaving "with very great sadness" after almost 30 years in the legal department of the foreign office:

"I cannot in conscience go along with advice—within the Office or to the public or Parliament—which asserts the legitimacy of military action without a [new Security Council] resolution, particularly since an unlawful use of force on such a scale amounts to the crime of aggression; nor can I agree with such action in circumstances which are so detrimental to the international order and the rule of law."

Her boss, Michael Wood, who went with the flow, was rewarded with knighthood the following year. So was Christopher Greenwood, the outside jurist from whom Lord Goldsmith sought cover, when he dutifully changed his opinion on the legality of the war. O Tempora, O Mores!

Katharine Gun

The bravery of Katharine Gun is well depicted in the book published last year, The Spy Who Tried to Stop a War. Working on Chinese affairs in the British equivalent of the U.S. eavesdropping agency (NSA), Katharine had little access to sensitive information regarding the Middle East. Yet at the turn of 2002-2003 it became clear to her that the U.S. and U.K. had decided to attack Iraq, whether or not it had threatening weapons, and whether or not the UN Security Council approved.

Still, Katharine was startled to see, set down in black and white in an office email of late January 2003, a blanket instruction to her colleagues to help the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) "surge" the monitoring of conversations of Security Council members in New York. The aim was to give American and British diplomats the wherewithal to pre-empt any initiative that could block the path to war. Her conscience led her to make that blanket instruction available to the media.

Katharine's objective, pure and simple, was to prevent a war of aggression. And, absent approval by the Security Council, that was precisely what an attack on Iraq would be. She expected that if she provided unimpeachable documentary evidence, including the full name of the senior NSA official ordering the "surge" in monitoring, this would demonstrate to the world how hell-bent Bush and Blair were on war.

Katharine Gun reasoned that exposing the details regarding the surge urged by the NSA order to eavesdrop on the conversations of Security Council members would bring a flurry of attention in the Western press. She expected that this, in turn, would give a boost to those trying to stop the launching of an unprovoked war. As things turned out, Katharine was shocked that the information she leaked was virtually ignored by the U.S. Fawning Corporate Media, which had long been cheerleading for war.

She was arrested and brought to trial. Her pro bono lawyers argued that she was trying to prevent a war. They contended that the war was illegal, which of course the British government denied. However, when asked to make public the opinion(s) of the British Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith, on the legality of the war, the government refused.

Blair was not inclined to let his own and Lord Goldsmith's dirty linen hang out for all to see. As a result, Katharine escaped the vindictive fate that befell Frank Grevil.

I would now like to introduce to you that same Katharine Gun, and ask her to read the citation awarding Frank Grevil the Sam Adams award:


The Sam Adams Associates Corner-Brightener Candlestick

Awarded to Frank Grevil

Know all ye by these presents that FRANK GREVIL is hereby awarded The Corner-Brightener Candlestick, presented by Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence.

Heeding the dictates of conscience and true patriotism, Danish Army Maj. Frank Grevil put his career and his very liberty at risk for democracy. He did this by exposing the deceptive nature of the intelligence conjured up in an attempt to "justify" Denmark's role in the attack on Iraq in March 2003.

Maj. Grevil and other intelligence analysts had warned the Danish government that there was very little evidence that Iraq had "weapons of mass destruction." Despite this, on the day before the invasion of Iraq, Denmark's Prime Minister told Parliament: "Iraq has weapons of mass destruction. This is not something we just believe. We know."

Grevil believes it to be extremely destructive of democracy when national leaders deceive the citizens' representatives, whether in Parliament or Congress, into voting for what the Nuremberg Tribunal called the "supreme international crime"—a war of aggression. He thought it essential that Danish citizens learn that their political leaders had not told the truth. And so he gave to the press documents that exposed this, fully aware that, in doing so, he ran the risk of going to prison.

Like previous SAAII annual award winner, Katharine Gun of British intelligence, the documents that Frank Grevil released shone a laser beam of light through a thick cloud of deception. Grevil set a courageous example for those intelligence analysts of the "Coalition of the Willing" who have first-hand knowledge of how intelligence was corrupted to "justify" war, but who have not yet been able to find their voice.(link til original)

onsdag den 28. januar 2009

Ta' våbnene fra terroristerne...

Berlingske Tidende oplyser:

Danmark vært for Hamas-konference
- Vi kan bekræfte, at vi er i kontakt med USA og en mindre gruppe af lande om at arrangere et ekspertmøde i København for at diskutere mulighederne for at imødegå våbensmugling til Gaza for at understøtte en varig våbenhvile, herunder en genåbning af grænseovergangene til Gaza, siger souschef i Udenrigsministeriets sikkerhedspolitiske kontor, Christian Dons Christensen, til Berlingske.dk

Til sammenligning:

EU Observer:
Arms exports to Israel from EU worth €200m
Union member states authorised the export of €200 million in arms exports to Israel in 2007, the latest figures from Brussels disclose, with France far and away the Jewish state's biggest European weapons supplier.

og

Jewish Voice for Peace:
U.S. Military Aid and Israel
More U.S. aid goes to Israel than any other country, even though Israel's per capita income is as high as many European countries. In fiscal year 2003 Israel received a foreign military financing grant of $3.1 billion and a $600 million grant for economic security in addition to $11 billion in commercial loan guarantees.

Men stadig kan man høre mange som mener at et hovedproblem er, at 'vesten' ikke blander sig nok i konflikten!?

søndag den 25. januar 2009

Blog-Klip

I denne omgang Blog-Klip går jeg let og elegant rundt om 'elefanten i spisestuen': Krigsforbrydelserne i Gaza, og retter i stedet blikket mod en række andre, vigtige emner.

Guantánamo.
The Ozone skriver:
Jeg har lige læst i politiken at præsident Obamas lukning af Guantánamo fangelejren er kommet under pres efter det er kommet frem at en tidligere ulovligt tilbageholdt person fra lejren er blevet leder hos al-Qaeda i Yemen.
Jeg har meget svært ved at se hvordan sådan en oplysning skulle kunne komme som en overraskelse.[...]

Hvis han havde været terrorist før den ulovlige tilbageholdelse, så burde han i stedet havde været stillet for en uvildig domstol der kunne have fægslet ham på helt lovlig vis.

Hvis han før tilbageholdelsen var en medløber, sympatisør eller bare tilfældigvis en som opholdt sig på det forkerte sted på det forkerte tidspunkt (eller sågar skyldig terrorist man bare ikke kunne bevise noget om) - ja så skulle han selvfølgelig have været løsladt så snart det var blevet slået fast at han ikke ville kunne dømmes ved en normal retfærdig rettergang. I en retsstat er man uskyldig til andet er BEVIST! Punktum!
[...]

Mener vi noget som helst med menneskerettigheder, må de begribeligvis omfatte alle mennesker, uanset hvad en tilfældig undermåler af en præsident eventuelt måtte finde på at kalde sine modstandere. Menneskerettigheder er for mennesker - UANSET HVAD! (Hele indlægget her: Guantánamo lukning har aldrig været mere nødvendig )


Camilla Lærkes Mors har et rigtig godt og tankevækkende indlæg, som behandler krisen i Mellemøsten på en noget andet måde end man er vant til(okay... jeg kunne ikke helt undlade at nævne emnet alligevel)

Tre dage efter jul

Den 27. december 2008 lå jeg i min seng med tømmermænd og en rød Samsonite fyldt af gaver på gulvet ved siden af. På sms’en lå der beskeder til familien med dårlige undskyldninger om at undsige sig årets sidste julefrokost.

Lisa Goldman, 41, blogger og selvlært journalist fra Tel Aviv, canadiskfødt og jøde, var på café tidligt om morgenen den lørdag. Hun tog hjem, lagde sig i sengen med en bog og faldt i søvn.

”Jeg vågnede mange timer senere. Det var allerede mørkt udenfor og jeg havde ikke kigget på min computer eller tv siden den foregående dag. Jeg loggede ind på Facebook og så at mange af mine venner – både arabere og israelere – havde lagt kryptiske beskeder, der udtrykte chok og rædsel på deres ’walls’ og deres status. Noget med Gaza? En krig? Jeg tændte for tv’et, blev deprimeret, slukkede det igen ti minutter efter og gik i seng igen,” skriver Lisa tilbage på de spørgsmål, jeg har sendt til hende.
(Læs resten her: Messias kom tre uger for sent)


George Monbiot giver et bud på hvordan man kunne tackle finanskrisen, i stedet for som nu, at pumpe penge i de finansielle institutioner som har været med at skabe selvsamme krise:

[...]In his book The Future of Money, Lietaer points out - as the government did yesterday - that in situations like ours everything grinds to a halt for want of money(1). But he also explains that there is no reason why this money should take the form of sterling or be issued by the banks. Money consists only of “an agreement within a community to use something as a medium of exchange.” The medium of exchange could be anything, as long as everyone who uses it trusts that everyone else will recognise its value. During the Great Depression, businesses in the United States issued rabbit tails, seashells and wooden discs as currency, as well as all manner of papers and metal tokens. In 1971, Jaime Lerner, the mayor of Curitiba in Brazil, kick-started the economy of the city and solved two major social problems by issuing currency in the form of bus tokens. People earned them by picking and sorting litter: thus cleaning the streets and acquiring the means to commute to work. Schemes like this helped Curitiba become one of the most prosperous cities in Brazil.

But the projects which have proved most effective were those inspired by the German economist Silvio Gesell, who became finance minister in Gustav Landauer’s doomed Bavarian republic. He proposed that communities seeking to rescue themselves from economic collapse should issue their own currency. To discourage people from hoarding it, they should impose a fee (called demurrage), which had the same effect as negative interest. The back of each banknote would contain 12 boxes. For the note to remain valid, the owner had to buy a stamp every month and stick it in one of the boxes. It would be withdrawn from circulation after a year. Money of this kind is called stamp scrip: a privately-issued currency which becomes less valuable the longer you hold onto it. (Læs resten her: A Better Way to Make Money)


That's it for now.

torsdag den 22. januar 2009

Dialog er mulig

Det har aldrig været min mening at skrive intensivt om Israel-Palæstina konflikten på denne blog, men begivenhederne i Gaza gjorde det desværre nødvendigt at melde klart ud.

Jeg må med skam erkende, at jeg ikke før nu, rigtig har fulgt med i den hjemlige debat om emnet... stor var min overraskelse så, da krigsvanviddet for alvor brød løs (mindst 1300 døde palæstinenser/13 døde israelere på et par uger), og jeg læste (og af og til skrev) med i kommentarerne til bl.a. Rune Engelbreths blog på politiken.dk;

Fx. indlægget Israelsk kynisme og vestlig passivitet:


Som jeg tidligere har været inde på, er Hamas et fatalt svar på de problemer, som palæstinenserne står over for, og der intet odiøst i Israels fjendskab med organisationen, som i sit berygtede charter fra 1989 ønsker Israel slettet af landkortet. Men igen: Det er Israel, der er den overdimensionerede Goliat her, og de palæstinensiske områder, som i årtier er blevet systematisk slettet af landkortet, mens det internationale samfund i det store hele har set passivt til.
Og dét er i sidste ende den bedste gave til Hamas og andre islamistiske organisationer verden over, hvis popularitet vil nå nye højder og motivere flere selvmordsangreb og mere antivestligt had i endnu videre kredse - hvilket de israelske høge så atter selv profiterer af, når denne spiral ‘legitimerer’ en yderligere brutalisering af den israelske jernhånd. Kun Vesten kan vende udviklingen ved for en gangs skyld at lægge maksimalt pres på Israel via både diplomati og sanktioner og vise palæstinenserne, at der er andre veje ud af krigen og krisen end at slutte op om Hamas.
Der er meget lidt grund til optimisme.(link)



Intet af det Rune Engelbreth skriver er eller burde være kontroversielt, hvis man som læser besidder blot et mindstemål af forbindelse til virkeligheden... men alligevel vælter det ind med stupide, infantile 'kommentarer' om antisemitisme, kommunisme, terrorsympati og hvad man ellers kan sige af grimme ting, når argumenter ikke slår til, for ikke at tale om rendyrkede racistiske og/eller fascistoide tirader. Her er et par ganske få eksempler:

alfred b. andersen, århus den 9. Jan kl. 12:29: Man kan da håb på, at deres had til Vesten efterhånden når sådanne højder, at de vælger at holde sig væk samt, at de der allerede er her flytter hjem.Og skulle vi så ikke bare lade det israelske militær gøre arbejdet færdigt.

Thomas Rasmussen, Århus den 9. Jan kl. 13:36: REL og andre på den yderste venstrefløj bruger næsten samme retorik om jøderne som Hitler og nazisterne gjorde![...]

David Mettstein, søborg den 9. Jan kl. 13:56:
[...]men jer rød-facister så vel også helst afrikanerne og jøderne døde og borte så jeres islamiske paradis kan begynde…….føj for satan

Thomas Dahl, Nørresundby den 9. Jan kl. 18:50:
[...]Fint nok med mig, det betyder nemlig at Israel kan give den hele armen nu og depopulere Gazastriben så der kan komme en endegyldig løsning på palæstinenserproblemet i Gaza …

carl nilsson, roskilde den 12. Jan kl. 14:02: Jeg synes det er dejligt at Politiken er så altfavnende at den også giver plads til alle gammelkommunisterne der har mistet deres ståsted dengang Sovjet Unionen kollapsede og at de har fået en bannerfører ved navn Rune Engelbreth[...]


Og sådan forsætter det, spalte op og spalte ned. Det burde give stof til eftertanke, at vi i et land som Danmark, ikke kan hæve os op over sådan et niveau i debatten.

Herunder er et eksempel på, at det rent faktisk KAN lade sig gøre: Professor Norman Finkelstein og den tidligere israelske udenrigsminister, Shlomo Ben-Ami, debatterer Israel-Palæstina konflikten på TV-kanalen Democracy Now:



Det er en temmelig lang video, ca. 1 time, men bestemt et kig værd. Begge d'herrer er jøder, og hhv. amerikaner og israeler, så beskyldninger om antisemitisme og/eller anti-amerikanisme kan parkeres udenfor Jonni Hansens plankeværk.

Selvom de langtfra er politisk enige, er de kommet udover mudderkastningsstadiet, og præsterer begge at fremstille sagen sagligt, ordentligt og uden at svine nogen parter til.

Det der - i modsætning til den danske debat - springer i øjnene er, at de anerkender fakta. Der er altså ikke noget af den slags hvem-skød-først nonsens og dit-hold-er-dummere-end-mit-hold retorik, som normalt i så rigt mål udfolder sig overalt. De accepterer, at virkeligheden er som den nu engang er, og at det ikke nytter noget at lade som om.

Vi har meget at lære.

Reklame: Frank Grevil modtager Hæderspris.

via http://www.tavshedspligt.dk/:

Sandhed og konsekvens

– En aften med whistleblowere.

Kom og mød markante whistleblowere fra USA, Englang og Danmark ved et fyraftensmøde i Politikens hus. Whistleblowere er mennesker der bryder deres tavshedspligt fordi deres samvittighed byder dem det. Det er ofte forbundet med store personlige omkostninger at blæse i fløjten.
Kom og hør, hvorfor de gør det, og hvordan det har påvirket deres tilværelse.
Deltag i en debat om hvad vi som samfund kan gøre for at minimere de personlige omkostninger ved at "sladre" i samfundets tjeneste?
Under fyraftensmødet vil Frank Grevil få overrakt Samuel Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence, en international hæderspris der hvert år uddeles til en whistleblower, som har bidraget til at sikre mod misbrug af efterretninger.
Aftenen vil byde på masser af personlige erfaringer.

Detaljer + info om debattører her

Tid og sted:
Politikens Hus
Rådhuspladsen 37
1785 København V
Mandag d. 26. januar
kl. 17:00 – 19:00
Billetter kan købes via politikenbillet.dk

lørdag den 17. januar 2009

Et mini-studie i fordrejning: Venezuela og Chavez i danske medier

Den 15. februar 2009, skal vælgerne i Venezuela stemme om et lovforslag, der vil ændre landets forfatning, og gøre det muligt for præsident Chavez (og alle andre i offentlige embeder) at genopstille til posten. Som loven er nu, er det kun muligt at sidde i to 5 års perioder - som ydermere skal være lige efter hinanden.

Det kan man synes om hvad man vil... både lovforslaget, og at man begrænser folks muligheder for at beklæde et embede. Ligeledes kan man synes hvad man vil om Chavez.

Men lad os - inden min punchline - kaste et blik på, hvad danske medier har at sige om hele affæren:

Jyllands Posten:
Vælgerne i Venezuela skal den 15. februar til en folkeafstemning, som skal afgøre, om præsident Hugo Chávez kan genvælges på ubestemt tid.[...] Kritikerne siger, at Chávez vil indføre et diktatur efter cubansk forbillede.

Dr.dk:
Vælgerne i Venezuela skal den 15. februar til en folkeafstemning, som skal afgøre, om præsident Hugo Chávez kan genvælges på ubestemt tid.[...] Kritikerne siger, at Chávez vil indføre et diktatur efter cubansk forbillede.

TV2.dk
Chávez som præsident for livet. Vælgerne i Venezuela skal den 15. februar til en folkeafstemning, som skal afgøre, om præsident Hugo Chávez kan genvælges på ubestemt tid. [...] Kritikerne siger, at Chávez vil indføre et diktatur efter cubansk forbillede.


(vakse læsere vil allerede her have bemærket, at alle 3 artikler er et optryk/afkog af det samme telegram fra Ritzau, men nærmest ligegyldigt hvor i mediebilledet man kigger hen, er om ikke ordlyden, så meningen den samme.)

And now, the punchline:

SÅ, denne diktatoriske, betonkommunistiske galning, Hugo Chavez (som i parantes har vundet 6-7 gange så mange folkeafstemninger som de fleste ledere i den vestlige verden) foreslår altså noget så vanvittigt, afskyeligt og udemokratisk som... tjah... DANSKE tilstande!?!? Dét som lovforslaget i al sin magt og vælde går ud på, er, at man må blive ved med at blive genvalgt, så længe man kan sikre sig vælgernes gunst. Så ja, hvis en Chavez - eller en anden i et offentligt embede i Venezuela - bliver ved med at være populær, vil han/hun kunne blive ved med at blive genvalgt... én embedsperiode ad gangen. Nøjagtigt ligesom Anders Fogh, Helle Thorning og alle andre i offentlige embeder herhjemme kan det; eller ligesom senatorer og kongresmedlemmer kan det i USA, præsidenten kan det i Canada, og ligesom politikere i det meste af EU kan det. Kritikere kalder muligvis dette for et diktatur efter cubansk for forbillede.

Det kan man så synes om hvad man vil... men hvornår hører vi fra danske medier, at Anders Fogh (eller Helle Thorning planlægger at blive statsminister på livstid?


Relateret:
Liste over begrænsninger på genvalg i forskellige lande
Lille artikel fra Latin America Herald Tribune
Den fulde lovtekst(på spansk)

torsdag den 8. januar 2009

Gaza igen

"Når sandheden erstattes af stilhed, er stilheden en løgn."
- Yevgeny Yevtushenko, Sovjetrussisk systemkritiker.[1]



Der er nogle ting der skal siges. De fylder ikke mange linier, og er at finde nederst i dette indlæg. Resten er blot en indledning.

Man kan altid finde mennesker, som vil argumentere for, at de der har magt også har ret. Men der burde - selv for den mest forstokkede vanetænker - komme et tidspunkt, hvor virkeligheden sniger sig ind på en, og det bliver tydeligt, at magt ikke giver ret; men derimod giver ansvar.

Man kan ligeledes altid finde mennesker(og diverse medier leder med lys og lygte efter dem, i 'balancens' hellige navn) som er villige til - endda ivrige efter - at bortforklare, forsvare, undskylde, retfærdiggøre eller ligefrem værdsætte krigsforbrydelser, massemord og andre åbenlyst horrible gerninger - når bare de bliver begået af den rigtige side i en konflikt: nemlig vores side.

Når de 'gode' dræber de 'onde', er det beklageligt, ikke-med-vilje(collateral damage) eller enddog befrielse. Når de 'onde' dræber de 'gode', er det terrorisme.

Men hvad er terrorisme?
I de senere år, er det pludselig blevet svært at definere terrorisme... det burde det ellers ikke være! FBI har en ganske udemærket definition de bruger internt:

“...the unlawful use of force and violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives."(link)

Ligeledes har den amerikanske hær længe haft en fornuftig definition af begrebet:
"Terrorism is characterized as the unlawful use of violence or threat of violence to coerce or intimidate a government or a society."(link)

Det er jo sådan set ret simpelt: Hvis man ulovligt bruger - eller truer med at bruge - vold, for at fremme politiske mål, udøver man terrorisme. Det giver anledning til to hurtige - og åbenlyse - betragtninger.

1) At terrorisme kan udøves af alle. Enkeltpersoner, organisationer og stater.
2) At opskriften på, hvordan man mindsker mængden af terrorisme i verden er forholdsvis simpel: man lader være med selv at udøve terrorisme.

For den helt tvingende nødvendige konsekvens af ovenstående definitioner er jo, at når 'vi' en konflikt smider bomber i hovedet på civilbefolkninger for at opnå politiske mål - at afsætte en regering for eksempel - så er dét terrorisme.

Dette er naturligvis ligeledes grunden til, at magthavere i vores del i verden pludselig har svært ved at definere terrorisme.

Når Israel bomber 3 FN-drevne skoler på én dag, er det naturligvis 3 tilfælde af terrorisme, præcis som det er det, når Hamas eller andre sender bomber afsted mod israelske skoler.

Der er naturligvis ingen som helst tvivl om, at hele situationen i Israel-Palæstina er dybt ulykkelig; at det i årtier har været gået i hårdknude; at der ikke findes nogle nemme løsninger, og at de forskellige parter i konflikten, på hver sin måde lader meget tilbage at ønske, både hvad angår integritet, intentioner og (især) syn på modparten.

Men disse forhold, bliver i helt tåkrummende omfang brugt til at skygge for nu'et, virkeligheden, at mennesker bliver myrdet en másse, mens livet går videre herhjemme.

Virkeligheden er, at i den nuværende Gaza-Israel konflikt er propertionerne som følger:

I de seneste 10 år, er 20 israelere blevet dræbt af raketter fra Gaza. I de seneste par ugers tid, er over 700 palæstinensere blevet dræbt af den israelske angrebsstyrke - og mark my words: dét tal vil stige voldsomt.
I dette tal indgår mindst 176 børn(derfor det forfærdelige billede øverst), og 86 kvinder. Omkring 3.000 er blevet kvæstede, heraf 40 procent børn, og 18 procent kvinder.(link)

Allerede her, kan man høre de førnævnte bortforklarere, forsvarere, undskyldere, retfærdiggørere værdsættere: "Jamen det er jo fordi Hamas er nogle værre nogle."

Ja, det er kan der være noget om. Personligt bryder jeg mig ikke spor om deres religiøsitet. Men hvis vi et øjeblik træder tilbage fra børnehavestadiet, og tilbage til dén verden som desværre er virkelig, hvor børn(og voksne) lige nu bliver slået ihjel i hundredevis, med våben leveret af 'os', vil vi indse, at det at vi ikke bryder os om et lands regering (i dette tilfælde et lands demokratisk valgte regering, som frivilligt indgik en våbenhvile med ærkefjenden Israel), intet har med sagen at gøre.

Dét der derimod har med sagen at gøre, - og dermed er de ting der må siges er, at de 1.5 millioner mennesker der bor i Gaza, i 60 år er blevet mast under en israelsk overmagt, og igen og igen, er blevet svigtet, undertrykt, bombet, skudt, terroriseret og indespærret. At dette militære vanvid ikke tjener hverken israelere eller palæstinensere. At Gaza er én stor koncentrationslejr, og at det burde fylde os alle med afmagt, afsky og vrede, at historien gentager sig selv på så uhyrligt og ironisk vis, at det folk der i sin tid flygtede til Israel i skyggen af verdens største folkemord, nu opfører den samme forestilling - i mindre målestok, og i en anden hovedrolle.

Afslutningsvist, da Ehud Barak, Israels nuværende forsvarsminister, i 1998 blev spurgt hvad han ville have gjort, hvis han havde været født som palæstinenser, svarede han:
"If I were a young Palestinian, it is possible I would join a terrorist organization."(link)



[1] Citat og sammenhæng tyvstjålet fra artikel af John Pilger:
Holocaust denied: the lying silence of those who know

søndag den 4. januar 2009

Robert F. Kennedy(1)

Jeg har i årevis tænkt og følt at der er noget helt galt i at betragte et lands BNP(BruttoNationalProdukt) som værende en meningsfyldt målestok for noget som helst, uden helt at kunne forklare hvorfor(hvilket naturligvis ikke er en særligt tilfredsstillende position). At læse økonomi på universitet, gjorde ikke noget videre for at rette op på det. Det forekommer mig absurd, at hvis man fx øver vold mod gamle mennesker, så de skal have kunstige hofter, stiger BNP'en. Dét kan af flere grunde ikke være en sund tilstand for et samfund.

Så pludselig ud af det blå, viser TV2 en film om Robert F. Kennedy - bror til den myrdede præsident John F. Kennedy. Robert blev som bekendt selv myrdet, under sin egen valgkamp for at blive USA's præsident. I denne film præsenteres følgende citat fra en af Robert F. Kennedys taler:

"Too much and for too long, we seemed to have surrendered personal excellence and community values in the mere accumulation of material things. Our Gross National Product, now, is over $800 billion dollars a year, but that Gross National Product - if we judge the United States of America by that - that Gross National Product counts air pollution and cigarette advertising, and ambulances to clear our highways of carnage. It counts special locks for our doors and the jails for the people who break them. It counts the destruction of the redwood and the loss of our natural wonder in chaotic sprawl. It counts napalm and counts nuclear warheads and armored cars for the police to fight the riots in our cities. It counts Whitman's rifle and Speck's knife, and the television programs which glorify violence in order to sell toys to our children. Yet the gross national product does not allow for the health of our children, the quality of their education or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages, the intelligence of our public debate or the integrity of our public officials. It measures neither our wit nor our courage, neither our wisdom nor our learning, neither our compassion nor our devotion to our country, it measures everything in short, except that which makes life worthwhile. And it can tell us everything about America except why we are proud that we are Americans.

Hele talen, som også omhandler USA daværende Vietnam-politik, kan læses
her.

Meget skidt kan - og bør - siges om Kennedy'erne, i tilfældet Robert, især om hans tid inden attentatet på broderen. Men det er yderst sjældent at man hører en centralt placeret politiker, sige noget SÅ indholdsrigt som ovenstående. Mere af den slags tak.