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[ This message has been sent to you via the CASI-analysis mailing list ] This is an automated compilation of submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org Articles for inclusion in this daily news mailing should be sent to email@example.com. Please include a full reference to the source of the article. Today's Topics: 1. Marines were strafed by DU at An Nasiriyah (Charles Jenks) 2. FPIF News | Iraqi Constitution | Secrecy: Mother of Terror (IRC Communications) 3. Mar 23- Sistani: Iraq constitution a 'dead end' (ppg) 4. Fisk: New Iraq? Hooded protest and masked statistics (Hassan) 5. Re: [casi-analysis] Seeking some assistence (Hassan) --__--__-- Message: 1 Date: Mon, 22 Mar 2004 16:59:23 -0500 Subject: Marines were strafed by DU at An Nasiriyah From: Charles Jenks <charles@DELETETHISmtdata.com> To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> http://www.traprockpeace.org/du_friendly_fire.html Soldiers' accounts reveal new details: 'depleted' uranium rounds devastated US troops at An Nasiriyah "It's bad enough to be shot, but to be shot with a depleted uranium round that basically turns you into a hand full of mush." - Col. Reed Bonadonna, field historian, talking to NPR's Jackie Northam Hear an clip (edited for brevity) containing the Colonel's remarks about DU= . Listen also to the entire NPR reports (first report deals with 'friendly fire' incident). On March 19, 2004 NPR aired the first of two reports by Jackie Northam on the experiences of US Marines in battle. 11 field historians had entered Iraq with Marine units and interviewed marines after battle. She was given access to 20 hours of interview tapes. Her first report concerns a battle o= n March 23, 2003 near An Nasiriyah, during which an A-10 repeatedly straffed US troops with 'depleted uranium' rounds. As reported by Jackie Northam, th= e Marine Corps says that 18 marines died at An Nasiriyah that day but will no= t reveal how many died from the DU rounds. It does seem clear though that previous assessments undersestimated Marine deaths from 'friendly fire' that day. Dan Fahey, for example, in his review of media accounts, reported the following as part of his assessment of DU use during Gulf War II: 23 March, near Nasiriyah =AD A-10 fires on Marine Corps vehicles attached t= o 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade. At least one vehicle, an armored assault vehicle (possibly AAVP7A1), is hit an= d penetrated by A-10 fire, killing at least one Marine and possibly wounding others. A total of nine Marines and seven vehicles were destroyed in this incident, although it is believed Iraqi forces caused the majority of the deaths and damage during this engagement. "The Use of Depleted Uranium in the 2003 Iraq War: An Initial Assessment of Information and Policies," page 5. Dan Fahey, June 24, 2003. [Fahey cited media sources for his figures.] Fahey's reporting of the belief that Iraqi forces caused the majority of th= e deaths and damage during the engagement appears to this writer to be a repeating of military spin. Listen to the interviews (first report) with soldiers soon after the battle. While the military will not disclose how many soldiers died that day from friendly fire, that is, from 'depleted' uranium rounds from the A-10, it is clearly many more than "at least one" a= s reported by Fahey, based on US media accounts. Sargeant Lonnie Parker said in the interview said that they lost the majority of their people from 'friendly' fire that day. Contrast the Fahey assessment with that of retired Air Force Colonel Sam Gardiner: Gardiner writes: "A disheartening aspect of the white flag story is what is beginning to surface about what might have been the real cause of the Marin= e casualties near An Nasiriyah on March 23. Marines are saying that nine of those killed may have been killed by an A-10 that made repeated passes attacking their position." Quoted in The not-so-friendly reality of US casualties, by David Isenberg, Aaia Times, Oct 22, 2003. See also the Charlotte Observer, March 29, 2003 (questioning if 9 marines who were said to have been ambushed by Iraqi's pretending to surrender had actually been killed by 'friendly' fire). And for identification of individual soldiers killed that day, see the Washington Post, Faces of the fallen,http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/world/iraq/casualties/facesofth= e fallen.htm The Post reports that 18 marines died in or around An Nasiriyah that day, 12 due to an alleged ambush by Iraqi soldiers who reported to hav= e pretended to surrender; and 6 "killed during operations" on the outskirts o= f the city. Charles Jenks, attorney at law President of the Core Group Traprock Peace Center 103A Keets Road Deerfield, MA 01342 413-773-1633; fax 413-773-7507 email@example.com http://www.traprockpeace.org --__--__-- Message: 2 From: "IRC Communications" <communications@DELETETHISirc-online.org> Organization: Interhemispheric Resource Center To: "firstname.lastname@example.org" <email@example.com> Subject: FPIF News | Iraqi Constitution | Secrecy: Mother of Terror Date: Mon, 22 Mar 2004 15:43:24 -0700 [ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ] ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ What=92s New at FPIF "Working to make the U.S. a more responsible global leader and partner" http://www.fpif.org/ March 22, 2004 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Introducing two new commentaries from Foreign Policy In Focus The Iraqi Constitution By Phyllis Bennis The signing of the interim Iraqi "constitution" by the Governing Council represents a significant step in U.S. efforts to legitimize its invasion and occupation of Iraq. By achieving the codification in a U.S.-supervised process of an ostensibly "Iraqi" legal document, the U.S. as occupying power is hoping that its planned June 30th "transfer of power" will be accepted globally as the "restoration of sovereignty to Iraq." In fact, that "transfer of power" will not end the U.S. occupation, will not lead to the withdrawal of U.S. troops, and will not result in any real sovereignty for Iraq. Phyllis Bennis <firstname.lastname@example.org> is a Fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies (www.ips-dc.org) and is a contributor to Foreign Policy in Focus (online at www.fpif.org). See complete new FPIF commentary online at: http://www.fpif.org/cgaa/talkingpoints/0403iraq-const.html With printer friendly PDF version at: http://www.fpif.org/pdf/gac/TP0403iraq-const.pdf Secrecy: The Real Mother of Terror By Colonel Daniel Smith, USA (Ret.) The Washington Times headline (March 9), reporting on the latest Gallup Poll, said it all: "Terrorism Ranks Highest as =91Critical Threat=92 to U.S." Given other recent headlines, this one =96 and the accompanying story, whic= h cites the spread of weapons of mass destruction as a close companion critical threat =96 begs an increasingly pertinent question about the core relationship between the people and their political leadership. The question and the relationship concern trust: trust that officials are interpreting data and trends properly and honestly reporting these to the public, who in a democracy are sovereign; trust that, given the prevailing conditions, appropriate precautions and plans are in hand; and trust that security procedures and processes are balanced by the strictest observance of and respect for the constitutional safeguards involving individual rights and protections. Such considerations point to two levels of trust =96 between elected officials and the public and between sovereign nations =96 both of which seem to be fraying as the country moves further and further from September 11, 2001, and from the March 2003 invasion of Iraq. Dan Smith <email@example.com> is a military affairs analyst for Foreign Policy in Focus (online at www.fpif.org), a retired U.S. army colonel and a senior fellow on Military Affairs at the Friends Committee on National Legislation. See complete new FPIF commentary online at: http://www.fpif.org/commentary/2004/0403terror.html With printer friendly PDF version at: http://www.fpif.org/pdf/gac/0403terror.pdf ------------------------------------------------------------------------- ***** We Count on Your Support ***** Please consider supporting Foreign Policy In Focus (FPIF). FPIF is a new kind of think tank--one serving citizen movements and advancing a fresh, internationalist understanding of global affairs. Although we make our FPIF products freely available on the Internet, we need financial support to cover our staff time and expenses. Increasingly, FPIF depends on you and other individual donors to sustain our bare-bones budget. Click on https://secure.iexposure.com/fpif.org/donate.cfm to support FPIF online, or for information about making contributions over the phone or through the mail. If you respond to this donation solicitation, please enter 'FPIF' in the "Special Offer Code" field. ***** Thank you ****** ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Distributed by FPIF:"A Think Tank Without Walls," a joint program of Interhemispheric Resource Center (IRC) and Institute for Policy Studies (IPS). For more information, visit www.fpif.org. If you would like to add a name to the "What=92s New At FPIF?" list, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org, giving your area of interest. Also see our Progressive Response newsletter at: http://www.fpif.org/progresp/index.html ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Interhemispheric Resource Center(IRC) http://www.irc-online.org/ Siri D. Khalsa Outreach Coordinator Email: email@example.com --__--__-- Message: 3 From: "ppg" <ppg@DELETETHISnyc.rr.com> To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Mar 23- Sistani: Iraq constitution a 'dead end' Date: Tue, 23 Mar 2004 14:55:55 -0500 Christian Science Monitor March 23, 2004 Sistani says Iraq constitution a 'dead end' Iraq's top Shiite leader threatens not to cooperate if UN endorses interim constitution. by Matthew Clark | csmonitor.com Iraq's top Shiite cleric, Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, has intensified his opposition to the country's interim constitution. Mr. Sistani sent a letter to the UN envoy in Iraq, Lakhdar Brahimi, saying that flaws in the constitution "will lead to a dead end and bring the country into an unstabl= e situation and perhaps lead to its partition and division." In the letter, Sistani said he will not participate in meetings with UN officials if the Security Council endorses the US-backed interim constitution, MSNBC reports. The Shiite leader also said he would boycott the UN mission "unless the United Nations takes a clear stance that the constitution does not bind the National Assembly and is not mentioned in an= y new Security Council resolution concerning Iraq." Among Sistani's main concerns is the consitution's heavy emphasis on ethni= c and religious differences. "This constitution that gives the presidency in Iraq to a three-member council, a Kurd, a Sunni Arab and a Shiite Arab, enshrines sectarianism and ethnicity in the future political system in the country," his letter said. Currently, the constitution, which was signed by the US-picked Iraqi Governing Council on March 8, is to remain in effect until a permanent constitution replaces it in late 2005. Mr. Brahimi and other senior UN officials had "privately opposed US plans t= o adopt a detailed interim constitution, warning that the process was insufficiently inclusive and would fuel resistance among groups not involve= d in drafting the document," The Washington Post reports. "It would have been wiser to have a brief statement of principles, not a full-fledged constitution," said one UN official who spoke on condition of anonymity. "We were clear with the Americans. If they had listened to us, they would not have this problem." When Sistani talks, the US and the UN listen. In January, the cleric demonstrated his considerable clout by quickly rallying tens of thousands o= f angry supporters to the streets of both Basra and Baghdad to call for elections. He hinted then that such crowds could become violent if their demands were not considered. These peaceful, yet passionate, demonstrations were large enough to cause Paul Bremer, the head of the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority, to ask the UN the following week for a team to assess the feasibility of early elections. Before the massive demonstrations, Sistani's consistent calls fo= r elections, since last June, seemed to fall on deaf ears. The last time he voiced objection to the interim constitution, the signing ceremony was delayed for three days, MSNBC points out. After it was signed, he issued a fatwa, or religious edict, casting doubts on its legitimacy. As of yet, it is unclear what effect, if any, Sistani's latest objection will have on the interim constitution. But the letter's threatening tone will no doubt give UN authorities much to think about in the next week. "We warn that any such step will be unacceptable to the majority of Iraqis and will have dangerous consequences," Sistani wrote. The New York Times reports that the rumor mill in Iraq is a chief obstacle to the US democracy-building effort. After US military leaders realized the word on the street =96 true or not =96 was fueling serious security problem= s, they decided to create a daily intelligence document covering Baghdad gossip. The Baghdad Mosquito is distributed via e-mail to military officers and policy planners and is posted on the military's classified Web server. Here is one rumor collected by the Mosquito: Less than 24 hours after a bombing in central Baghdad that tore the facade off the Mount Lebanon Hotel, the rumors began circulating in the marketplaces and teahouses: that the hotel was demolished not by a bomb, as the Americans maintained, but by an errant American missile. Sifting through the wide array of information that forms the opinions of average Baghdadis will be critical to further US efforts to improve securit= y and democracy in Iraq's volatile capital. http://tinyurl.com/26rl6 --__--__-- Message: 4 Date: Wed, 24 Mar 2004 03:08:16 -0800 (PST) From: Hassan <hasseini@DELETETHISyahoo.com> Subject: Fisk: New Iraq? Hooded protest and masked statistics To: CASI newsclippings <email@example.com> New Iraq? Hooded protest and masked statistics By Robert Fisk in Terbil, Iraq - 20 March 2004 http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article5902.htm Exactly a year after the Anglo-American armies invaded Iraq, I found five young men yesterday busy smashing up what was left of a Saddam statue in this little dusty border village. The torso and head of the dictator had long disappeared from his plinth at the frontier station but his legs and one arm and a battery of monumental missiles still lay on the ground in gleaming steel. Two American attack helicopters were racing up the border - still trying to find Donald Rumsfeld's al-Qa'ida hordes as they supposedly swarm into Iraq - but what caught my eye were the heads of the five young men, so assiduously hammering and sawing and hacking at the remains of the statue. Four of them were wearing black face masks, the fifth had a black hood over his head. A year after the fall of Saddam, Iraqis have to hide their identity when they attack his image. What does that tell us about "new Iraq"? If you are in Iraq, in Baghdad, driving its dangerous roads, the evidence of collapse and failure is everywhere. The few unarmed NGOs are marooned in the cities, unable to travel on the highways, which have become the domain of assassins and bandits. Now even the road south of Kerbala is the haunt of armed gangs. When I drive these highways, I now wear a keffiyeh and thobe on my head. My driver wears western trousers and shirt but I am in Arab clothes to avoid being attacked. Other westerners are doing the same thing. What does that tell us about Iraq a year after its "liberation"? Many drivers now refuse to work for western reporters - and who can blame them? Yesterday, another journalist from the "Arabia" television station died of wounds after being shot by US troops - no wonder his colleagues walked out of Colin Powell's boastful Baghdad press conference yesterday. Three journalists working for the American- funded television station have been killed by insurgents. An old Iraqi friend of mine - one of Saddam's most trenchant critics - approached me this week. He had wanted to work for a "democratic" Iraq. Now he wanted my help in obtaining a second passport. Could I speak to the Australian embassy, he asked? He no longer believed that he would live in a stable country. What does this also tell us about "new Iraq"? For those who spend time in Iraq, it is difficult to know whether to laugh or to cry when the pro-war chorus bangs its drums again. Richard Perle, one of the war's American neo-conservative Vulcans who did more than most to push the Bush administration into this invasion, was arguing with me on a radio show, praising the resumption of 24-hour electrical power in the Iraqi capital. Alas, I could hear little of what he was saying because of the roar of emergency generators around me in night-time Baghdad. How do we explain now the armies of truculent, often ill-disciplined mercenaries now roaming Iraq on behalf of the Anglo-American occupation authorities. Many thousands of them British, some are well trained, many are not. In my own hotel, dozens of them swagger through the lobby with rifles and pistols, all talking "security", all working for private security firms hired by the occupation power or by private companies. They have no rules of engagement and many of them drink too much. When I pleaded with one British gunman in sunglasses last week to at least put a shirt over his gun to conceal it when walking in and out of our hotel, he pointed a finger at me. "Listen mate," he shouted. "If I see someone with a gun come to shoot you, I am going to walk right past and do nothing." But he is the risk to our security. The Iraqis, of course, watch the coming and going of these young men and draw their own conclusions. I fear I know what they are. Attacks against US troops and western civilians are daily increasing in Mosul. Two days ago, three Iraqis were killed in Basra by a car bomb intended for a British military patrol. Western troops will now only drive at night north of Najaf in companies 200-strong. What happened to that nice little neatly defined "Sunni triangle"? No wonder Spanish troops are so keen to go home. Now that Poland's Prime Minister says he was "deceived" about weapons of mass destruction, how soon before the Polish contingent follow the Spanish? Never is it reported that Polish troops are attacked almost every night around the city of Hilla. David Kay's astonishing interview in yesterday's Le Figaro - "we must recognise our mistakes in order to restore our credibility" - is being widely broadcast in Baghdad. "I don't think there was any serious chance of proving the existence of weapons of mass destruction," he said. "Because the best evidence suggests they did not exist." Still, the occupying power, the "Coalition Provisional Authority", refuses to keep statistics on the dozens of innocent Iraqis dying each week under their mandate, in massive car bombs and in roadside killings. The US military searches of Iraqi Sunni villages, the Israeli-style battering down of doors and houses, the constant American killing of innocents is embittering a new generation of Iraqis. And soon we will have "democracy" in Iraq. Copyright: The Independent. UK. __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Finance Tax Center - File online. File on time. http://taxes.yahoo.com/filing.html --__--__-- Message: 5 Date: Wed, 24 Mar 2004 00:17:32 -0800 (PST) From: Hassan <hasseini@DELETETHISyahoo.com> Subject: Re: [casi-analysis] Seeking some assistence To: CASI analysis <firstname.lastname@example.org> Tom, Here is an article that may be useful. HZ ------------------------------------------------------ http://www.helsinki-hs.net/news.asp?id=3D20040308IE2 Foreign - Monday 8.3.2004 Helena Ranta to Iraq to lead group investigating graves of Saddam victims Team to work under US Army protection A team of five experts headed by Finnish forensic dentist Helena Ranta is leaving for Iraq on Wednesday to investigate mass graves found there. The team is to be in Iraq for about six weeks. "We are expected to assess about 20 grave sites", Ranta said at a press conference on Friday. "Mainly it is a question of mass graves that came about in connection with the suppression of the insurrections that broke out after the first Iraq War." At that time forces of former dictator Saddam Hussein are estimated to have killed tens of thousands of Shi'ites and Kurds. The sites are reportedly located in the surroundings of Baghdad, and in northern and southeastern parts of Iraq. For security reasons Ranta would not reveal their exact locations. Ranta says that the operation is very different from her previous missions, such as her investigation in Kosovo. "This time we are not collecting evidence; we are simply analysing the graves. We will investigate how many dead there are, and how big and how deep the graves are. Collecting evidence would be legally awkward, because we do not know what kind of a court someone might end up facing." The request to send the group came from the United States last summer, but the departure was delayed by the violent situation in Iraq at the time. Foreign Ministry official Aapo P=F6lh=F6 does not believe that the United States could use the results of the group's study for propaganda purposes. "Naturally, anything can be used for any purpose, but our starting point is that this is activity which supports basic humanitarian action and encourages respect for human rights. We assume that all parties involved are on the move with the same principles." Ranta says that the work of the group will help the provisional administration of the coalition in its decision-making, and will serve the interests of the Iraqi people "in the long term". She says that her team will help the coalition decide which graves to open and in what order. Her team includes an archaeological anthropologist, an archaeological police officer, a geologist, as well as police officer Mika Tauru, who has previously worked in Bosnia collecting information about excavations of mass graves. He has also worked as an investigator for the War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague. Ranta says that her team will have 400 kilos of equipment, which is significantly more than a Danish group which returned from Iraq late last year. "We are making extensive use of archaeological methods. We have considerable experience on the composition of the ground, and how the substances behave when they are disturbed", says Taisto Karjalainen, one of the members of the team. Ranta's team will be under the protection of the US Army. Moving from one place to another is the most dangerous, as there have been constant attacks against military vehicles in different parts of Iraq. "Each member of the team will travel in a separate car. We will have an ambulance, two mine clearing vehicles, and at least one bulldozer in our convoy", Ranta said. "Frankly, probably everyone is a bit frightened, but it is part of the job. I have confidence in the 24-hour protection that we have been promised", Karjalainen said. __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Finance Tax Center - File online. File on time. http://taxes.yahoo.com/filing.html End of casi-news Digest _______________________________________ Sent via the CASI-analysis mailing list To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-analysis All postings are archived on CASI's website at http://www.casi.org.uk