"News Fit to Transmit in the Post Cassini Flyby Era"
Fitzgerald Delivers * Sitcha's Cross * DeNuked
27 October 2005"..someone created fake documents related to Niger and Iraq
and used them as a false pretense to launch America into an invasion
of Iraq. And when a former diplomat made an honest effort to find out
the facts, a plan was hatched to both discredit and punish him by
revealing the identity of his undercover CIA agent wife."
- James Moore1) Fitzgerald Indictments deliver most important case
2) Richard Sitcha - "My Way of the Cross"
3) Bush Admin. Drops 'Bunker-Buster' Plan
Quite honestly, I am at wits'edge in anticipation on the Fitzgerald Indictments due tomorrow. The Plame-CIA outing can be a perfect political-legal-storm to rescue a lost US democracy, and injustice as the rule of law. Item 2 is one of those stories of a personal holocaust for a political-asylum-refugee from Cameroon, and his treatment in the claws of US injustice post 9/11/01. Please take time to read this powerful story by Richard Sitcha. And item three ends this issue on a positive note on the termination of the Bush Nuke Bunker Buster proposal. Thank Goodness - and go for it - Patrick J. Fitzgerald!Keep posted to FlybyNews.com for updates!
1) Fitzgerald Indictments deliver most important case
The Most Important Criminal Case in American History
by James Moore
Published by the Huffington Post; 19 October 2005
If special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald delivers indictments of a few functionaries of the vice president's office or the White House, we are likely to have on our hands a constitutional crisis. The evidence of widespread wrongdoing and conspiracy is before every American with a cheap laptop and a cable television subscription. And we do not have the same powers of subpoena granted to Fitzgerald.
We know, however, based upon what we have read and seen and heard that someone created fake documents related to Niger and Iraq and used them as a false pretense to launch America into an invasion of Iraq. And when a former diplomat made an honest effort to find out the facts, a plan was hatched to both discredit and punish him by revealing the identity of his undercover CIA agent wife.
Patrick Fitzgerald has before him the most important criminal case in American history. Watergate, by comparison, was a random burglary in an age of innocence. The investigator's prosecutorial authority in this present case is not constrained by any regulation. If he finds a thread connecting the leak to something greater, Fitzgerald has the legal power to follow it to the web in search of the spider. It seems unlikely, then, that he would simply go after the leakers and the people who sought to cover up the leak when it was merely a secondary consequence of the much greater crime of forging evidence to foment war. Fitzgerald did not earn his reputation as an Irish alligator by going after the little guy. Presumably, he is trying to find evidence that Karl Rove launched a covert operation to create the forged documents and then conspired to out Valerie Plame when he learned the fraud was being uncovered by Plame's husband, Ambassador Joseph Wilson. As much as this sounds like the plot of a John le Carre novel, it also comports with the profile of the Karl Rove I have known, watched, traveled with and written about for the past 25 years.
We may stand witness to a definitive American moment of democracy. The son of a New York doorman probably has in his hands, in many ways, the fate of the republic. Because far too many of us know and are aware of the crimes committed by our government in our name, we are unlikely to settle for a handful of minor indictments of bureaucrats. The last thing most of us believe in is the rule of law. We do not trust our government or the people we have elected but our constitution is still very much alive and we choose to believe that destiny has placed Patrick Fitzgerald at this time and this place in our history to save us from the people we elected. If the law cannot get to the truth of what has happened to the American people under the Bush administration, then we all may begin to hear the early death rattles of history's greatest democracy.
Fortunately, there are good signs. Fitzgerald has reportedly asked for a copy of the Italian government's investigation into the break-in of the Niger embassy in Rome and the source of the forged documents. The blatantly fake papers, which purported to show that Saddam Hussein had cut a deal to get yellowcake uranium from Niger, turned up after a December 2001 meeting in Rome involving neo-con Michael Ledeen, Larry Franklin, Harold Rhodes, and Niccolo Pollari, the head of Italy's intelligence agency SISMI, and Antonio Martino, the Italian defense minister.
If Fitzgerald is examining the possibility that Ledeen was executing a plan to help his friend Karl Rove build a case for invading Iraq? Ledeen has long ties to Italian intelligence agency operatives and has spanned the globe to bring the world the constant variety of what he calls "creative destruction" to build democracies. He makes the other neo-cons appear passive. He brought the Reagan administration together with the Iranian arms dealer who dragged the country through Iran-Contra and shares with his close friend Karl Rove a personal obsession with Machiavelli. Ledeen, who is almost rabidly anti-Arab, famously told the Washington Post that Karl Rove told him, "Any time you have a good idea, tell me."
The federal grand jury has to at least consider whether Ledeen called Rove with an idea to use his contacts with the Italian CIA to hatch a plan to create the rationale for war. Ledeen told radio interviewer Ian Masters and his producer Louis Vandenberg, "I have absolutely no connection to the Niger documents, have never even seen them. I did not work on them, never handled them, know virtually nothing about them, don't think I ever wrote or said anything about the subject." It is strictly coincidence then that some months after he and his neo-con consorts and Italian intelligence officers met in Rome that the Niger embassy was illegally entered and nothing was stolen other than letterhead and seals. And equally coincident that forged papers under those letterheads were slipped to Elisabetta Burba, a writer for an Italian glossy owned by Silvio Berlusconi, Italy's prime minister, and a backer of the Bush invasion scheme. Unfortunately for the pro-war neo-cons, even an Italian tabloid would not publish the fake documents and turned them over to the CIA and US government in Rome.
The other American attendees at Ledeen's Roman Holiday are also worthy of scrutiny. Larry Franklin was recently arrested for leaking classified US government information to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. Ledeen sprang quickly to his defense but Franklin faces prosecution next year and is most probably cooperating with prosecutor Fitzgerald. Harold Rhode, the other American actor in this tragicomic affair, worked the Office of Special Plans (OSP) at the Department of Defense for Vice President Dick Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. Characterized as a "counter-intelligence shop," OSP simply interpreted intelligence in a manner that fit the need for evidence that Iraq had WMD. If the CIA gathered data that said otherwise, OSP analyzed it differently or ignored the facts and then reported to the vice president precisely what he wanted to hear. Rhode also was the liaison between Ahmed Chalabi, the convicted embezzler the Bush administration was using to feed information to them and Judy Miller about the distortions and lies required to fuel the rush to war.
No great extrapolation is necessary to assume that OSP, sitting inside the CIA, got early word that Joseph Wilson was being dispatched to Niger to investigate the sale of low-grade uranium to Iraq. Rhode needed only to pick up the phone and call the vice president's chief of staff Scooter Libby, who would tell his boss and Karl Rove. How hard is it for even Republicans to believe, at this point, that Rove is capable of launching a plan to discredit Wilson and punish him by exposing his wife? Rove and his boss were not simply in danger of losing the prime cause for the war; they faced an even graver political wound of being discovered as covert agents who defrauded the government and the public.
I have seen the spawn of Rove's tortured mind and watched a hundred of his political scams unfold and I am confident I know how this one played out. Rove might have brought it up with his fellow big brains in the White House Iraq Group, a propaganda organization set up to disseminate information supporting the war. There was likely a consensus to move the plan to smack down Wilson out of the White House. Rove always keeps a layer of operatives between himself and the person he gets to pull the trigger. Libby was probably told to manage it out of the VP's office to protect the president because Karl always takes care of his most prized assets. Libby then likely ordered John Hannah and possibly David Wurmser to call the ever-friendly Judy Miller at the New York Times and columnist Robert Novak to give them Valerie Plame's identity. Rove knew that Miller would call Libby of Aspen for confirmation and his old friend Novak was certain to call Rove who, as an unidentified senior White House official, would confirm the identity on background only. Because Novak is a partisan gunslinger, he wrote more quickly than Miller and when she saw the firestorm his story created, she backed off and has since been trying to cover for herself and Libby. Miller's later claim that she cannot remember who gave her the "Valerie Flame" name is as much dissembling as Rove's unconvincing argument that he "forgot" he met with Time reporter Matt Cooper. Karl Rove can remember precinct results from 19th century presidential elections. He neither forgets nor forgives.
There you have it, Mr. Prosecutor. To quote an unreconstructed former Republican presidential candidate, "You know it. I know it. And the American people know it." We expect you also to have sufficient evidence to prove all of this. There are many of us who are on the verge of losing faith in our democracy. We are convinced that there are people within the highest ramparts of American government who are willing to put our country at great risk to advance their geo-political vision. We want our country back. And all we have left is the power of the law. From what we know, you are the right man come forth at the right time.
Prove to us we still live in a democracy and a nation of laws.
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[For latest updates and links to Fitzgerald and related sites, see: FlybyNews.com
2) Richard Sitcha - "My Way of the Cross"
My Way of the Cross
by Richard Sitcha
I am a 43-year-old man from Cameroon (coastal Central Africa) who fled my native country fearing for my life after helping to see the truth of the disappearance of 9 young Cameroonians (the Bepanda Nine ), killed by paramilitary governmental forces. I am married and father of 2 boys, have worked as assistant bailiff in a bailiff office. I was granted asylum in the U.S. in January 2003. I was working, peacefully awaiting my family to join me. But 9 months later, without having committed any crime, I was called again to the immigration court. The judge who d granted me asylum now revoked it because he did not believe my story any more. Despite an appeal pending, I was arrested in the courtroom and immediately sent to jail.
After ten days in Hartford County Jail, I was transferred to Osborn Correctional Facility, where I passed 7 months locked up 22 hours a day and sharing a cell with drug dealers and criminals, some sentenced to 25 years for murder. I was assaulted by one of them and spent three days in the psychiatric hospital. I was then transferred to Franklin County Jail in Greenfield MA. After one year, on March 31, 2005, I was transferred, along with 29 other immigrant detainees, to Plymouth County Correctional Facility. Upon arrival I was forced to spend a night, naked and without blanket, on the floor of a cold (AC) room. (It seemed I was being punished for responding to a booking officer that I did not know my size; actually I do not know the conversion of my size, height, weight, etc. from French into American.) The next day I was sent to the hole for refusing to cooperate . Although I was not found guilty after my hearing in front of the captain, I spent three weeks in the hole, locked up 23 hours a day. Fortunately, since mid-April, some of my supporters have been able to visit me from far away, one of them faithfully twice a week over this long time.
I was transferred several times, and then spent 5 months in one unit of general population. I never received my possessions (Bible, books, papers, documents, etc.) from Franklin (allegedly shipped to storage in Boston), but eventually was given a Bible and was able to attend Mass on Saturdays, I also initiated mid-day prayer gatherings with other detainees, each in his own language.
On September 24, 2005, for a second time, a criminal inmate (awaiting trial) came into my cell, punched me in the stomach, and threatened me, because I had asked him to give me back what he had borrowed from me two days earlier. I was saved because my cellmate called for a guard. Both my cellmate and I were moved to the hole for our security because other inmates might retaliate for our snitching. After three days in the hole, my cellmate was sent to another unit, while I received from a lieutenant a disciplinary report accusing me of threatening and fighting with another inmate. My cellmate who'd witnessed the entire scene, was gone . I went to the disciplinary hearing and was found not guilty. After three days I was released from the hole and sent to another unit, where I met again my former cellmate. As he is Haitian and speaks French, I was explaining to him in French what had happened to me after he left the hole. Another criminal inmate (also awaiting trial) told us he doesn't want us to speak any French because we are in America and must speak English. What will be the next step with my life being threatened by criminals?
I have already spent 25 months of my life in jail without having committed a crime. I am not a threat to national security nor a danger to any community. Rather I have done my best to help communities during my (previous) two years living and working in the United States.
I was a member of Saint Anne/Immaculate Conception Church in Hartford, where I was a leader, reader and singer in the French Mass. Beside my weekly contribution for church activities, I was contributing $50 a year for the Archbishop Annual Appeal of Hartford and $50 a year to the Fund for Retired Priests. I contributed $100 annually to Florida Foods Service Inc. to help nourish poor children in Central and South America.
I held a lecture in the French Department of Wesleyan University in Middletown CT to help students willing to do research about Africa. I helped one of them to achieve his thesis for graduation, which was very appreciated by his professors.
While in prison, I watched on TV the suffering of the victims of the tsunami and of Hurricane Katrina. I sent donations of $100 to UNICEF-USA (for tsunami victims) and $100 to the American Red Cross (for Katrina relief).
Shall my loving kindness be repaid with hatred?
I am responsible to my family; I miss them and haven t spoken to them for over two years. My father passed away while I was in prison. I understand that by US law, since I am not accused of any crime on American soil, and I entered legally and filed for asylum appropriately, the government is supposed to give me a reasonable amount of time to leave the country ( voluntary departure ). I have filed three motions for that -- so that I might be able to pack my belongings and go elsewhere, since my life would be in danger if I go back to my country -- but I never got an answer.
I want to take this opportunity to express my thanks and my gratitude to my church community and supporters in Hartford; parents, students and staff of the French Department, Wesleyan University, Middletown CT; churches and all my supporters of western Massachusetts, especially in the Greenfield area; all others in New York, California, Minnesota, Chicago IL, Maryland, Florida, etc. Your letters of comfort and encouragement, your signatures on my behalf, your financial support, your birthday cards, books you have sent to me, and especially your daily prayers have been an unprecedented thing during this crucial time in my life. I have felt and lived the hospitality, the heartfelt love of many American people. You are holding the spirit of the Founding Fathers of your nation. It is God's grace that I have known such wonderful people like you. You have filled up the emptiness of my family in America. Indeed we are today members of one family, the human family, God s family. I am not worthy to reward you, but God will do it.
May God bless all of you.
Love and Peace in Christ.To contact Richard Sitcha, write to:
#39823; DN1, #405;
Plymouth County Correctional Facility;
26 Long Pond Road; Plymouth, MA 02360
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- - From the Sitcha Defense Committee
[Excerpts from its meeting on] October 2005 in Worcester.
Suzanne Carlson (Greenfield MA), Carl Doerner (Conway MA), Andrew Cohen (Cambridge MA),
Lorena Dutelle (E. Windsor CT), Albert Marceau (Hartford CT).
LEGAL UPDATE: In Fed. District Court in Hartford CT, the Government had moved to lift/vacate the Stay of Deportation (to clear RS for deportation). Even though Malik said the motion was "frivolous" (since the Real ID Act passed in May, they should maintain the stay for pending "habeas" cases), Malik and RS filed a motion to maintain the Stay of Deportation.
FLAG: Their motion indicates the Govt. has travel documents from Cameroon which would be valid to use for deportation.
The Real ID Act requires all habeas motions to be filed in the district where the case was decided - i.e. for RS that means Hartford, where we (with Malik, Carl and Albert) filed the habeas motion for Richard , pro se, in mid-May. The First Circuit (to which we had appealed Judge Ponsor's dismissal of RS's habeas petition in April) recently agreed to release the case, which leaves us only in the (more promising) Second Circuit, which is what we've been wanting and striving for since May. This means the Second Circuit Court of Appeal (actually in NY) would review the record on its legal merits (e.g. RS should have been, but was not given opportunity to cross-examine the government witness in the hearing that resulted in revocation of his asylum status).The tough news is that the courts are backed up and months more will pass before a decision is rendered. There will be no public appearances in this venue.
A petition to the Court of Appeals for a re-hearing of the case could end in rejection of his bid, with the next appeal to the Supreme Court. That court would almost certainly not set his case for argument. Most are rejected. If RS has a favorable result in Ist District appellate court, this would be a remanding of the case back down to BIA (Bureau of Immigration Appeals), then to the immigration court, at which time the merits of his case would again be argued in open court in Hartford. We would want and could likely find and hire an attorney, have one appointed by the court, or find one pro bono to handle these arguments. (The reason for hope the appellate court will so rule, and the BIA grant him asylum, is that his asylum was reversed on the basis of hearsay.)
For more information or to get involved, contact:
Sitcha Defense Committee
P.O. Box 1263; Greenfield MA 01302
Suzanne Carlson, (413) 774-2112, firstname.lastname@example.org; Lorena Dutelle, email@example.com;
Andrew Cohen, firstname.lastname@example.org; Carl Doerner, email@example.com; Albert Marceau, firstname.lastname@example.org
3) Bush Admin. Drops 'Bunker-Buster' Plan
By H. JOSEF HEBERT
The Associated Press
Tuesday, October 25, 2005; 10:58 PM
WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration has abandoned research into a nuclear "bunker-buster" warhead, deciding instead to pursue a similar device using conventional weaponry, a key Republican senator said Tuesday.
Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., said funding for the nuclear bunker-buster as part of the Energy Department's fiscal 2006 budget has been dropped at the department's request.
The nuclear bunker-buster had been the focus of intense debate in Congress, with opponents arguing that its development as a tactical nuclear weapon could add to nuclear proliferation.
An administration official, speaking on condition on anonymity because negotiations on the department's spending bill have not yet been completed, confirmed that a decision had been made to concentrate on a nonnuclear bunker-buster.
Administration officials have contended the country must try to develop a nuclear warhead that could destroy deeply buried targets including bunkers tunneled into solid rock. Potential adversaries increasingly are building hardened retreats deep beneath the earth, immune to conventional weapons, the officials said.
But Congress has been cool to the idea of a new nuclear warhead. The House blocked funding for the program, even though the Energy Department had requested only $4 million, scaling back earlier requests.
The Senate approved the $4 million, but a final decision was up to lawmakers working out a compromise between the House and Senate on the department's budget.
Domenici, chairman of the subcommittee that oversees DOE's budget, said the conferees had agreed to drop funding for the program at the request of the department's National Nuclear Security Administration, the agency that oversees nuclear weapons programs.
"The focus will now be with the Defense Department and its research into earth penetrating technology using conventional weaponry," Domenici said in a statement. The NNSA "indicated that this research should evolve around more conventional weapons rather than tactical nuclear devices," the senator said.
"This is a true victory for a more rational nuclear policy," said Stephen Young, a senior analyst for the Union of Concerned Scientists, a nuclear nonproliferation advocacy group. "The proposed weapon, more than 70 times the size of the bomb dropped on Hiroshima, would have caused unparalleled collateral damage."
Last April, a National Academy of Sciences panel concluded that an earth-penetrating nuclear device would likely cause the same casualties as a surface burst if the weapons are of the same size. Such a bomb could cause from several thousand to 1 million casualties, depending on its yield and location, according to the report requested by Congress.
At a congressional hearing earlier this year, NNSA chief Linton Brooks acknowledged there is no way to avoid significant fallout of radioactive debris from use of a bunker-buster warhead.
He said the administration never intended to suggest "that it was possible to have a bomb that penetrated far enough to trap all fallout. I don't believe the laws of physics will ever let that be true."
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., one of Congress' most vocal opponents of the bunker-buster, has said the nuclear bunker-buster "sends the wrong signals to the rest of the world by reopening the nuclear door and beginning the testing and development of a new generation of nuclear weapons."
For a link to this article published by the Washington Post, see:www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/10/25/AR2005102501712.html
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