Our Freedom Is Dying And It's All Down To The Blood-Brothers; Bush And Blair ...
Pictured above is the multi award winning Australian writer John Pilger, genuine giant among independent investigative journalists, famous foreign correspondents, acclaimed authors and authoritative documentary film makers.
Here's what he says at the head of his website homepage:
"It is not enough for journalists to see themselves as mere messengers without understanding the hidden agendas of the message and myths that surround it."
For the benefit of any American readers who -- due to the 21st century info-isolation imposed by the [once unimaginable] star-spangled version of the Iron-Curtain -- haven't heard of Pilger, he was the man who first broke the sickening story to the world of the infamous, Killing Fields.
Such, is the stature of this shining example of a fearless truth-teller.
And here's an excerpt from his latest freelance print-piece, published in the UK's New Statesman.
On 7 December, Maya Evans, a vegan chef aged 25, was convicted of breaching the new Serious Organised Crime and Police Act by reading aloud at the Cenotaph the names of 97 British soldiers killed in Iraq. So serious was her crime that it required 14 policemen in two vans to arrest her. She was fined and given a criminal record for the rest of her life.Here's another quick clip & paste wherein Pilger turns his attentions across the Atlantic toward America.
Freedom is dying.
Eighty-year-old John Catt served with the RAF in the Second World War. Last September, he was stopped by police in Brighton for wearing an "offensive" T-shirt, which suggested that Bush and Blair be tried for war crimes. He was arrested under the Terrorism Act and handcuffed, with his arms held behind his back. The official record of the arrest says the "purpose" of searching him was "terrorism" and the "grounds for intervention" were "carrying placard and T-shirt with anti-Blair info" (sic).
He is awaiting trial.
Such cases compare with others that remain secret and beyond any form of justice: those of the foreign nationals held at Belmarsh prison, who have never been charged, let alone put on trial. They are held "on suspicion". Some of the "evidence" against them, whatever it is, the Blair government has now admitted, could have been extracted under torture at Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib.
They are political prisoners in all but name. They face the prospect of being spirited out of the country into the arms of a regime which may torture them to death. Their isolated families, including children, are quietly going mad.
Since shortly after This Old Brit's blog was born, a John Pilger link has lurked in the blogroll. Some will almost certainly have visited said site, while others may still be unaware of what wonderful reporting and writings they're missing.
Consider parallel events in the United States.
Last October, an American surgeon, loved by his patients, was punished with 22 years in prison for founding a charity, Help the Needy, which helped children in Iraq stricken by an economic and humanitarian blockade imposed by America and Britain.
In raising money for infants dying from diarrhoea, Dr Rafil Dhafir broke a siege which, according to Unicef, had caused the deaths of half a million under the age of five. The then Attorney-General of the United States, John Ashcroft, called Dr Dhafir, a Muslim, a "terrorist", a description mocked by even the judge in his politically-motivated, travesty of a trial.
The Dhafir case is not extraordinary. In the same month, three US Circuit Court judges ruled in favour of the Bush regime's "right" to imprison an American citizen "indefinitely" without charging him with a crime.
This was the case of Joseph Padilla, a petty criminal who allegedly visited Pakistan before he was arrested at Chicago airport three and a half years ago. He was never charged and no evidence has ever been presented against him. Now mired in legal complexity, the case puts George W Bush above the law and outlaws the Bill of Rights.
Indeed, on 14 November, the US Senate effectively voted to ban habeas corpus by passing an amendment that overturned a Supreme Court ruling allowing Guantanamo prisoners access to a federal court. Thus, the touchstone of America's most celebrated freedom was scrapped.
Without habeas corpus, a government can simply lock away its opponents and implement a dictatorship.
Well, whatever. Just how heavy a hint is needed now? No matter. Here's a final teaser to tempt you to take it - whatever it's weight.
A related, insidious tyranny is being imposed across the world. For all his troubles in Iraq, Bush has carried out the recommendations of a Messianic conspiracy theory called the "Project for a New American Century". Written by his ideological sponsors shortly before he came to power, it foresaw his administration as a military dictatorship behind a democratic fa?ade: "the cavalry on a new American frontier" guided by a blend of paranoia and megalomania.So now you needn't even search for the sidebar [which slips and becomes a 'bottom' bar' for those viewing via an Internet Explorer browser] for the permanent Pilger link. We've made things ultra easy -- just click here.
More than 700 American bases are now placed strategically in compliant countries, notably at the gateways to the sources of fossil fuels and encircling the Middle East and Central Asia. "Pre-emptive" aggression is policy, including the use of nuclear weapons. The chemical warfare industry has been reinvigorated. Missile treaties have been torn up. Space has been militarised. Global warming has been embraced. The powers of the president have never been greater. The judicial system has been subverted, along with civil liberties.
The former senior CIA analyst Ray McGovern, who once prepared the White House daily briefing, told me that the authors of the PNAC and those now occupying positions of executive power used to be known in Washington as "the crazies". He said, "We should now be very worried about fascism".