Progressive Calendar 08.05.06
From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)
Date: Sat, 5 Aug 2006 04:29:13 -0700 (PDT)
             P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R     08.05.06

1. LWVoters           8.05 9am
2. Cabaret face lift  8.05 9am
3. Wamm book club     8.05 10am
4. Workplace justice  8.05 10am
5. Homeless Vets4P    8.05 10am
6. GreenParty StP     8.05 12noon
7. Lebanon/Gaza rally 8.05 1pm
8. Wetback/film       8.05 3pm
9. Mortenson party    8.05 6pm
10. Hiroshima events  8.05-06 6pm
11. Hiroshima walk    8.05 7:30pm Duluth MN
12. Ball/bad puppets  8.05 8pm
13. Bar crawl         8.05 time?
14. DeptPeace/fest    8.05-06 Dunnell MN
15. Fringe festival

16. Max J Castro - As Lebanon burns, US leaders cheer
17. John Conyers - The Constitution in crisis
18. ed           - I'd like to write a haiku (poem)

-------1 of 18-------

From: erin [at] mnwomen.org
Subject: LWVoters 8.05 9am

Also Saturday, August 5: League of Women Voters of Minnesota Voter Service
Training 9 AM. Lunch and informal discussion at noon, followed by Moderator
Training from 12:30-3 PM. Hamline University School of Law. To reserve
651/224-5445. www.lwvmn.org.


--------2 of 18--------

From: April Sellers <april [at] patrickscabaret.org>
Subject: Cabaret face lift 8.05 9am

The renovations at the cabaret are under way and we need your help!!!!

On August 5th and 6th we will be painting the theater, and making room for
the new risers and chairs. We need volunteers on August 5th and 6th to
help us paint.

There are two time slots that we are looking to fill
From 9:00 am to 12:30 pm
from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm

What will you get in return???
Tickets to an upcoming show, Great Company Free Food and Good Karma!
We are willing to barter so let me know your ideas.

Please respond with your name, email, phone number, and which time slot
you can come and paint; send to april [at] patrickscabaret.org


--------3 of 18--------

From: wamm <wamm [at] mtn.org>
Subject: wamm book club 8.05 10am

Saturday, August 5, 10am to Noon Residence of Lucia Wilkes Smith,
2615 Park Avenue, Minneapolis.

Book: "Losing Moses on the Freeway" by Chris Hedges. Open for people to
join at any time. FFI: Email <rabbas [at] usinternet.com>.


--------4 of 18--------

From: erin [at] mnwomen.org
Subject: Workplace justice 8.05 10am

Saturday, August 5: Workplace Justice Support/Networking Meeting. 10AM-Noon.
Minnesota Women's Building, 550 Rice Street, St. Paul. Also held August 19,
same time and place. 952/996-9291.


--------5 of 18---------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com>
Subject: Homeless Vets4Peace 8.05 10am

Saturday, 8/5, 10 to 11:30 am, homeless Veterans for Peace meeting,
Peacehouse, 510 E Franklin, Mpls.  Wayne at 651-774-4008


--------6 of 18-------

From: ed
Subject: GreenParty StP 8.05 12noon

All people interested in finding out more about the Green Party of St. Paul
are invited to:

Our monthly meeting
First Saturday of every month
Mississippi Market, 2nd floor
Corner of Selby/Dale in St. Paul
noon until 2 pm

<http://www.gpsp.org>


--------7 of 18--------

From: tracymolm <molm [at] umn.edu>
Subject: Lebanon/Gaza rally 8.05 1pm

End the Attacks on Lebanon and Gaza:
Protest and March
Sat, August 5, 1pm
Jackson Square Park - 23rd Ave & Jackson St NE, Mpls -
one block west of Central Ave on 23rd, near Lowry Ave

Israel has launched an all-out war on the Lebanese people. Nearly 600
Lebanese people have been killed (mostly women and children), hundreds
injured, and 750,000 have been driven from their homes. Entire villages
lie in rubble, as does much of the capitol city. At the same time, more
than 100 Palestinians have died in Israeli attacks on Gaza.

The planes dropping bombs on Beirut and Gaza, the tanks crossing into
Lebanon, and the guns shooting at civilians in Gaza and Lebanon were made
in the USA and paid for with US taxpayer dollars. Israel is the largest
recipient of US financial aid, every year receiving over $3 billion in
military and economic aid. Thus is it critical that we not remain silent
while the US government supports, both financially and diplomatically,
these crimes against humanity. Israel has already laid claim to the
southern Lebanese strip with thousands of Israeli troops occupying the
region. Thus we must stand with the people of Lebanon and Palestine, as
well as the Iraqi people, who are fighting to be free of foreign
occupation.

With this protest and march, we join with the national call for action and
demand:

* An End to the attacks on Gaza and Lebanon
* The right of the Palestinian people to self-determination
* The Right of Return of all Palestinian refugees
* The end of Military Aid to Israel

Organized by the Coalition for Palestinian Rights, endorsed by Al-Aqsa
Institute, American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, Anti-War
Committee, Arab Community Center, Freedom Road Socialist Organization,
Iraq Peace Action Coalition, Jews for an End to the Occupation, Mayday
Books, Middle East Peace Now, Muslim American Society -- Minnesota
Chapter, National Lawyers Guild -- Minnesota Chapter, Women Against
Military Madness.

For more information you can contact the AWC at 612-379-3899 /
info [at] antiwarcommittee.org


--------8 of 18--------

From: Corey Mattson <coreymattson [at] maydaybookstore.org>
Subject: Wetback/film 8.05 3pm

Wetback: The Undocumented Documentary

Join Nayo, Milton, Luis, Oscar, and Ana on a harrowing journey from Latin
America and Nicaragua across the U.S. border in this documentary film
about undocumented immigration.  Learn about the dangers, hardships, and
obstacles faced by thousands of Latino immigrants seeking a better and
more dignified life across the border today.  Stay for a discussion after
the film.  Hear other points of view; express your own.

Mayday Bookstore (301 Cedar Avenue, Minneapolis)
Saturday, August 5th, 2006 @ 3 pm

For more information, contact: twincitiesysa [at] yahoo.com
Sponsored by Socialist Action and Youth for Socialist Action
www.socialistaction.org


--------9 of 18--------

From: Chris Macgowan <macgowan [at] pobox.com>
Subject: Mortenson party 8.05 6pm

House Party for Jesse Mortenson!
Green Party - Minnesota House of Representatives seat 64A
http://www.jessemortenson.com/

We'll have air conditioning and chocolate cake from Cafe Latte and MORE!
952 Linwood Avenue
Saturday, 5 August
6-9pm
Come and Meet Jesse Mortenson!
{More important - let Jesse meet YOU! -ed]

I'm running for Minnesota House of Representatives seat 64A in order to
represent the just and sustainable future that so many of my neighbors
believe in: a strong and unique local economy, adequate health care for
all, bringing our troops home from Iraq, and more. I'm running because I
believe that we need a representative who will use elected office first
and foremost to build stronger grassroots movements for change."
-- Jesse Mortenson,
   http://www.jessemortenson.com/

Chris Macgowan 952 Linwood Avenue Saint Paul, Minnesota 55105 United
States 651.225.9743 (h) 952.882.4557 (w) macgowan [at] pobox.com
http://www.macgowan.com


--------10 of 18--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com>
Subject: Hiroshima events 8.05-06 6pm

Hiroshima Nagasaki Commemoration Events: August 5-6 Weekend in
Minneapolis

The Hiroshima Nagasaki Commemoration Committee announces a full weekend of
events commemorating the 61st anniversary of the atomic bombings of
Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Summary of events:
All held at Lyndale Park Peace Garden near Lake Harriet in Minneapolis
unless otherwise indicated.

  Saturday, August 5, 6 p.m.:  Commemorative tea ceremony.

  Sunday, August 6, 7:30 a.m.:  Traditional Ceremony of Cranes, featuring
Dr. Kosuke Koyama.
  Sunday, August 6, 2:30 p.m.:  Family Event at the Spirit of Peace
sculpture to honor Sadako, the girl of 1000 cranes.
  Sunday, August 6, 4:00 p.m.:  Women in Black procession along the
Pathway to Peace, from W. 40th St. and Bryant Ave. S. to the Peace Garden.
  Sunday, August 6, 5:30 p.m.: Concert for Peace, featuring Kairos
Intergenerational Dance Theatre, Rabbi Sim Glaser and the Social Action
Figures, and Nick Jordan, at the Lake Harriet Bandshell.


Detail of events:

On Saturday, August 5, at 6pm, John Brisson, a member of the
Yukimakai (meaning amid the snow) tea study group, will lead a meditative
tea ceremony at the time when people are gathered in Hiroshima to remember
the bombing and its victims.  A major purpose of the Yukimakai is to
explore new ways of bringing the four principles of Chanoyu, Harmony,
Respect, Purity, and Tranquility, into our daily life. Mr. Brisson has
studied the tea ceremony with Patricia Katagiri for 11 years.  People are
invited to bring their lawn chairs to observe this almost silent ritual.

At 7:30 a.m. on Sunday, August 6, the Ceremony of Cranes begins with music
and reflection and ends at 8:15 a.m. with a moment of silence at the time
of the dropping of the bomb. Participants then lay origami peace cranes on
trees and bushes at the Peace Garden.  This year, Yumiko Yoshikiyo, a
native of the Hiroshima, will read the peace proclamation by the mayor of
Hiroshima.  Ms. Yoshikiyo is spending six months in the Twin Cities
talking with student and civic groups about Japanese culture and the
effects of the atomic bombing with the NEVER AGAIN campaign. The keynote
speaker is Dr. Kosuke Koyama, who was a 15-year-old boy in Japan when the
atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This ceremony has
been held at the Peace Garden for over 20 years.

At 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, a Family Event with music, dance, storytelling,
and crane-folding will occur at the new, and yet unfinished, Spirit of
Peace sculpture in the upper part of the garden near the cascade. Designed
by St. Paul artist Caprice Glaser, there is a step that shows how to fold
the crane on each of the boulders surrounding the sculpture.
  Larry Johnson of Key of See storytellers will emcee the afternoon.
Mumin, a Japanese chorus, will sing two songs.  Marcia Sanoden, a music
teacher who grew up in Japan, will teach the audience some traditional
Japanese songs. Larry, Elaine Wynne, and their granddaughter Renee
Weeks-Wynne, will tell the Sadako story.  The Sansei Yonsei Kai, a
multigenerational dance troupe led by Linda van Dooijeweert, will perform
dances and teach everyone a line dance from Nagasaki.  Everyone will have
the opportunity to fold cranes.

At 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, the Women's International League for Peace and
Freedom (WILPF) will lead a ritual walk of the Women In Black along the
Pathway to Peace. The Pathway to Peace was designed and created by Greg
Ingraham and Teri Kwant as part of the City of Minneapolis Art in Public
Places program.  The procession will begin at the first of seven cairns
located at the corner of 40th Street and Bryant Ave. South and will
proceed to each of the six other cairns leading to the Peace Garden. Each
cairn conveys a message related to an aspect of peace: the nature of
conflict and peace, the politics of peace, peace in relationships,
peaceful actions, inner peace, the future of peace, and the responsibility
of peace. During the procession brief remarks at each cairn will pose
questions pondering ways to seek peace in a nuclear age.
  The public is invited to join the Women In Black in this procession as
part of the activities of the annual Hiroshima/Nagasaki commemoration.

At 5:30 p.m., the final event of the weekend is the third annual Peace
Concert at Lake Harriet Bandshell, as part of the Lake Harriet Bandshell
summer concert series.  Kairos Intergenerational Dance Theatre will open
the program, followed by Rabbi Sim Glaser and the Social Action Figures.
  This group performs rock and roll songs primarily from the 1960s.  The
final group on the program is Light of the Moon, led by Nick Jordan. This
country and bluegrass group will have people dancing in the aisles.

Location and more information:

The Lyndale Park Peace Garden is located on Roseway Road across from the
Rose Garden on the northeast side of Lake Harriet in Minneapolis.

For general information, contact JoAnn Blatchley at 952.922.0308 or
Jab229 [at] cs.com.
For more information about the storytellers, contact Elaine Wynne at
elent [at] comcast.net.
For more information about the dance group, contact Linda van
Dooijeweert at Linda [at] urbantraveler.com.
For more information about the music, contact Marcia Sanoden at
squarecat4 [at] yahoo.com.
For more information about Women in Black, contact Marilyn Cuneo at
mcuneo77 [at] aol.com.
For more information about the tea ceremony John Brisson at
jrbrisson [at] tmail.com.

The Hiroshima Nagasaki Commemoration Committee offers these events to the
community to encourage reflection on the past and hope for the future
through action in the present.  It calls for the total abolition of
nuclear weapons throughout the world as one measure of ensuring a just and
lasting peace.


--------11 of 18--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com>
Subject: Hiroshima walk 8.05 7:30pm Duluth MN

Saturday, 8/5, 7:30 pm, walk of Hiroshima/Nagasaki remembrance from Leif
Erickson Park to Endion Beach at Canal Park along the Lakewalk, Duluth.
anathoth [at] lakeland.ws


--------12 of 18--------

From: Erik Forman <eforman [at] macalester.edu>
Subject: Ball/bad puppets 8.05 8pm

On the occasion of the 214th birthday of poet, artists, and radical Percy
Bysshe Shelley, Rise Like Lions cordially invites you to attend:

A Masquerade Ball in the Den of Thieves

Saturday, August 5th, 8pm
2021 27th Ave. S in Minneapolis
Suggested donation of $5-12 (though no one will be denied for lack of funds)

Come one, come all, from far and wide, to the masquerade ball of the
century, featuring the world-renowned reggae/hip-hop sensation PeeWee
Dread and le Cirque d'Indecence. Join us for an evening of music, dance,
and drink, fire-breathing, tap-dancing, hula-hooping, poetry-reading,
general merry-making and a thoroughly indecent erotic silhouette puppet
show! Come in your finest costume and bring everyone you know!

Event hosted by Rise Like Lions, a collective of individuals committed to
establishing cooperative, sustainable, and affordable community living
options in the Twin Cities. All proceeds will contribute to the
establishment of a housing cooperative in St. Paul, fall 2006.

For more information about the event and cooperative living options, visit
www.riselikelions.org.

[Finally! A thoroughly indecent erotic silhouette puppet show! What we've
all needed but didn't know we needed! It better be (ahem) _thoroughly_
indecent; we wouldn't want to be stiffed, although some may be into bait
and switch...  -ed]


--------13 of 18--------

From: hare [at] tcfreenet.org
Subject: Bar crawl 8.05 time?

Where do you go to find anything and everything happening in Saint Paul?
AllSaintPaul is the place to discover and share all that Saint Paul has to
offer.  Nightlife, District Councils, artists - and coming soon, retail
and services, too!

http://www.allsaintpaul.com/

To celebrate the launch of the site and summer in Saint Paul, AllSaintPaul
will sponsor a bar crawl on August 5.  Visit: The Downtowner, Tom Reids,
Chico Chica, or McGovern's, get an ASP button and receive generous drink
specials.  At each of these fine bars, all within a 2 block stretch of W
7th you will also find live music and door prizes.

Promoting the artist community is a large part of AllSaintPaul's goal.
To truly feature this aspect of the site on Aug 10 at the Minnesota Museum
of American Art ASP is co-sponsoring a Patio Nights. A group of local
artists including M.J, Huebach, Justin Olson, Robyn Priestly, Kara
Hendershot and more will show pieces to illustrate the variety and depth
or the art scene here as it comments on community and society. Erik Brandt
and the Urban Hillbilly Quartet will also perform on the patio.  This
event is all ages with a cash bar, cover is $5 or wear your button and get
in for the member price ($3).

We're still adding a lot of features day by day, so stay with us - and let
us know what you'd like to see.  You can reach us at:

info [at] allsaintpaul.com  or 651-330-1762
See you at the launch!
Saint Paul is fun.  Saint Paul is home.  AllSaintPaul is Saint Paul.

Erik Hare West End (Irvine Park), Saint Paul More info:
http://forums.e-democracy.org/stpaul/contacts/erikhare


--------14 of 18--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com>
Subject: DeptPeace/fest 8.05-06 Dunnell MN

8/5 and 8/6, "Cornstock" music/peace/art festival to benefit the Dept of
Peace Campaign, 437-40th Ave, Dunnell, MN.  $20/1 day or $30/2 days.
www.cornwoman.com or heidi [at] cornwoman.com


--------15 of 18--------

From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com>
Subject: Fringe festival

Preview of the FRINGE FESTIVAL:Progressive Recommendations
by Lydia Howell

The Fringe festival is amazing--and overwhelming. I suggest picking up
this week's PULSE (AUG.2 edition) for a sharp idea of hwo to proceed.
Also, keep an eye out for the Fringe Festival Guide. I'm writing a piece
w/reviews of particluar Fringe Festival plays to appear in PULSE Wed.
Aug.9th editon. Will be seeing plays all weekend!

http://www.fringefestival.org (for days/times)
http://www.pulsetc.com
Here's some advance recommendations:

BAGHDAD BURNING:Electronic Postcards From Iraq 2003-2006: Four actresses
do a readers' theatre of the eyewitness accounts by Baghdad's ONLY woman
bloger - known as "Riverbend". She began telling the world what the US
'liberaton' of Iraq was like from an educated Iraqui woman's persepctive
in August 2003...and continues now. Her voice is powerful, scathing with
wit and anger, with observations CNN will never make.(Intermedia Arts)

BENT Two Gay men endure in Hitler's concentration camps--and find love
with one another. A profound play about the human spirit.(Bryant-Lake Bowl)

THE SPIRITUAL FRINGE: plays dealing with religion and spiritual quests,
all shows @ Lake harriet United Methodist Church (This is a new addition
to the Fringe). Some of the ones that look intriguing:

ALL YOU CAN EAT SPIRITUAL BUFFET. Explores how religon has beomce
devisive--rather than a force that reconcilles and connects us.

INTO THE DARKNESS, INTO THE LIGHT: Jay Hornbacher's one-man show about
humanity's quest to know God

GODDESS: Drawing on "The Da Vinci Code", a comic exploration of female
divinity

THE 9/11 TAPES: How the attacks impacted teenagers and their view of the
future. (RARIG/Experimental Theatre, West Bank, U of M campus)

STRUGGLE: THE TRUE STORY OF EX-INMATES. Prisoners have been some of the
most silenced people in America. But, as Mumia Abu Jamal (a political
prisoner on Pennsylvania's Death Row) has certainly revealed that these
are voices we need to hear.

(Both @ RARIG/Experimental Theatre, West Bank, U of M campus)

AFRICAN ROADS, AMERICAN STREETS Dance!
I saw this show opening night and it's utterly EXHILERATING. Drumming
with African dance and American hip hop creates a joyous tribute these
Black forms of art. Adult and youth dancers that thrilled the audience.
A true 'feel good' experience!(Southern Theatre, West Bank)

VIVA VENEZUELA! More dance and percussion to give you a glimpse of Hugo
Chavez country! (Rarig/Procenium Theatre, UofM, West Bank)

ROCK,SHOCK & AWE: Rock-musical thatlooks at the current state of war,
current political leadres and religious thinkihg--toold throughn a solider
& his wife. (RED EYE)

And this is just a taste of this year's Fringe festival.


--------16 of 18--------

As Lebanon burns, U.S. leaders cheer
And the media goes along with the official story
By Max J. Castro
Progreso Weekly - Jul 27, 2006
http://www.progresoweekly.com/index.php?progreso=Max_Castro&otherweek=1153976400

In light of the absolute imperative of stopping the carnage of civilians -
and independent of whether there is a general cease fire and without
regard to what the United States, Israel, or the international community
do - Hezbollah should announce and carry out an immediate halt of its
missile attacks on Israel. These attacks kill and injure Israeli civilians
and are violations of international humanitarian law. This is the
principal reason they must cease: they are wrong and illegal. In addition,
Hezbollah rocket attacks have no military significance, they provide a
pretext for Israel's continued attacks against Lebanon, and they create
the appearance that the situation there is a two-sided military contest
rather than a case of naked aggression.

This plea for an end to Hezbollah attacks is not made out of any illusion
or expectation of reciprocity by Israel or its supporters in the United
States. The reaction of the political elites and the media in this country
to Israel's ferocious assault on Lebanon is a scandal and a sad spectacle.
For, as the toll of dead and wounded civilians in Lebanon climbs and the
country's infrastructure and social fabric is demolished, what do
virtually all the top members of the U.S. political class, liberal and
conservative, Democrat and Republican, legislative and executive branch,
do? They cheer.

There is no other way to describe the situation after last weekend's
overwhelming Congressional approval of twin resolutions praising the Bush
administration's support of Israel's attack on Lebanon. The Senate was so
monolithically united on the issue that it passed its version by unanimous
consent. The resolution passed in the House of Representatives by a 410-8
vote "commends the President... for fully supporting Israel as it responds
to these armed attacks by terrorist organizations and their state
sponsors."

As the toll of civilians killed in the conflict approached 400 in Lebanon
and 20 in Israel - a ratio of 20 Lebanese civilians killed for every
Israeli - the House resolution condemns Hamas and Hezbollah for
"continuing to indiscriminately target Israeli civilian populations with
their rockets and missiles" without a word for the awesome civilian toll
taken by Israel's much more powerful bombs, rockets and missiles.

It is thus with the full and enthusiastic endorsement of Congress that the
Bush administration is aiding and abetting Israel in perpetrating a
colossal catastrophe against a defenseless people. This U.S. support
involves more than just political and diplomatic backing; it includes
rushing to deliver "precision-guided" U.S.-manufactured weapons to the
Israeli military.

The unanimity does not stop with the government. Virtually the entire
mainstream media are reporting the war from the U.S. and Israeli
perspective. For example, with few exceptions, journalists for CNN and
other cable channels, when reporting on the human and physical damage in
Beirut, incorporate Israeli talking points and rationalizations into their
reporting, including the argument that Hezbollah is really who is
responsible for civilian casualties because it "hides" in the midst of the
civilian population.

What the media fail to mention is the fact that Hezbollah is a military,
political, religious, and welfare organization woven deeply into the
fabric of Lebanese society - geographically, politically, economically and
culturally. There is no way to destroy Hezbollah or deeply wound it
militarily without destroying many innocent Lebanese lives and devastating
vast areas of Lebanon. This is a cold fact U.S. and Israeli leaders know
and consider an acceptable cost.  As for the media, a rare exception to
the general practice of framing reporting of the devastation of Lebanon
through the Israeli spin was a Sunday piece by CNN's medical
correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Gupta described the damage inflicted by
Israeli air raids on a hospital nursery and other medical facilities and
emergency vehicles. As Anderson Cooper tried to weave in to the story the
Israeli narrative of not targeting civilian targets, Gupta stuck to his
guns and said, "I don't know if they are targeting them or what but they
are certainly not avoiding them (medical facilities)." Israeli authorities
issued public disclaimers and, by Monday, Gupta seemed to be reluctantly
including parts of the Israeli justifications in his accounts, and CNN
announced that the doctor would be going to Israel to report on the
medical situation there.

The media tilt in favor of Israel is so massive that it is difficult for
U.S. media critics like Washington Post columnist Howard Kurtz to ignore.
Instead, the talking points the Israelis use to justify civilian
casualties provide Kurtz a convenient rationale for the media's tilt:

"Since Israel has inflicted far more damage on Lebanon than it has
sustained, a heavy focus on the more than 300 civilian victims in that
war-ravaged country could help tilt public opinion against the Jewish
state. But that would overlook two key facts: that Israel retaliated only
after Hezbollah crossed a U.N.-sanctioned border to kill and capture
several Israeli soldiers, and that Hezbollah fighters hide - and hide
their weapons - among civilians to make counterattacks more difficult."

This would seem to imply that the media's job is not to report the news
but to ensure that the public's opinion does not go against Israel. Given
the scenes of rubble and devastation, that is a hard job for a medium that
thrives on pictures. But the U.S. media is doing its best.  With few
exceptions, U.S. editorial boards, opinion writers and commentators
mirrored the lockstep reaction of the political class and the reporting.
Editor & Publisher columnist Greg Mitchell aptly critiques the prevailing
U.S. editorial attitude: "While it's not surprising that nearly every
editorial page in the U.S. has offered support for Israel's right to
retaliate against Hamas and Hezbollah, it's a disgrace that few have
expressed outrage, or at least condemnation, over the extent of death and
destruction in and around Beirut - and the attacks on the country's
infrastructure, which harms most citizens of that country."

One might have thought that the media might at least question the Israeli
air force's destruction of Lebanon's television towers, including not only
the Hezbollah station but the Lebanese state station and other stations
that broadcast to the northern area of Lebanon, where there is little
support for Hezbollah. What possible military justification could this
have? Except for one reporter, the media did not ask the question nor
raise an obvious possibility: the Israelis want to prevent those Lebanese
who are not sympathetic to Hezbollah from witnessing how Israel is
ravaging their country. If this is the Israeli motivation for blowing up
the television towers, it is a cynical but not irrational move, for the
Israeli attack against Lebanon risks uniting the entire country against
Israel, turning what was a sectarian political and military organization
into a national resistance movement.

In contrast to the utter lack of opposition to Israel's crushing of the
Lebanese nation in elite political and media circles in the United States,
some prominent international voices of protest are beginning to be heard.
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has said Israel's disproportionate
reaction deserves to be condemned. UN Under-Secretary-General for
Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland used even stronger language,
characterizing Israel's actions as criminal under international
humanitarian law. "Bombing civilian populations is wrong, destroying
civilian infrastructure is wrong," said Egeland. Egeland and Annan have
called for an immediate cease fire.  The United States and Israel almost
surely will ignore the pleas of UN leaders at the same time that they cite
a UN resolution calling for the disarming of Hezbollah as justification
for the need for Israel to continue its attacks and for the United States
to refrain from calling for a cease fire. Arab allies, such as Saudi
Arabia, which Monday called for the United States to bring about a cease
fire, may be harder to ignore. Saudi Arabia and other U.S. allies in the
region earlier expressed their opposition to Hezbollah's attack on Israeli
soldiers. But, as they watch the catastrophe in Lebanon, these key U.S.
allies risk serious domestic political problems if they are seen as
complicit in the destruction of an Arab nation.

The restlessness of Arab allies and the scale of the social cataclysm
brought on by the Israeli attack on Lebanon - as many as 700,000 refugees
in a population of 4 million - may have been what persuaded Secretary of
State Condoleezza Rice to pay a surprise visit to Beirut on Monday.
Without a trace of irony, the New York Times reported on the visit:
"Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice met Lebanese officials here today to
try to prop up the government of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and to
reassure Arab allies who have become increasingly impatient with the
Israeli bombardment, which has killed close to 400 people, mostly Lebanese
civilians."

Only in the universe of distortions, blame-shifting, tortured
rationalizations, and media spin surrounding the U.S.-supported Israeli
attack on Lebanon would it seem anything other than surreal for the patron
of the country perpetrating the aggression to seek to "prop up" the
government of the nation being victimized. As a complement to this
impossibly twisted policy, the Secretary of State offered some contorted
language, speaking of an urgent need for a sustainable cease fire, code
words for an end to hostilities based on U.S. and Israeli terms and
timetables, not one based on the imperative of stopping the wholesale
destruction of human life and property.

All of this suffering is unlikely to produce a lasting peace; only a fair
settlement of the Palestinian question, a two-state solution based on 1967
borders, will open the door for real peace. Rather, all of the scenarios
being proposed by Israel and the United States involve no more and no less
than the introduction of some type of occupation force into Lebanon. And,
as in Iraq, the result will be, in all probability, even fiercer
resistance and more dying. Are the NATO countries willing to provide the
bodies in order to satisfy the U.S. and Israeli agendas? If not, who will?
After the Israeli attack, will Lebanese soldiers be willing to die for
this cause? If not, who will? One way or another, as with the Iraqi
adventure, the United States is likely to pay a very heavy price for yet
another attempt - this time by proxy - to remake the map of the Middle
East through the force of arms.


--------17 of 18--------

The Constitution in Crisis      from truthout.org
By Rep. John Conyers
The Huffington Post
Friday 04 August 2006

Six Years of Unchecked Abuses - Had Enough?

To view the full report:
http://www.house.gov/judiciary_democrats/iraqrept2.html

Today, I am releasing the final version of my report, the "Constitution in
Crisis." The report, which is some 350 pages in length and is supported by
more than 1,400 footnotes, compiles the accumulated evidence that the Bush
Administration has thumbed its nose at our nation's laws, and the
Constitution itself.

Approximately 26 laws and regulations may have been violated by this
Administration's misconduct.

Our Constitution established a tri-partite system of government, with the
notion that each branch of government would act as a check on the other
two. Unfortunately, for the last six years, the Republicans in Congress
have largely viewed themselves as defenders of the Bush Administration,
instead of a vital check on overreaching by the Executive Branch. By doing
so, I believe they have acted to the detriment of our Constitutional form
of government.

We have seen so many transgressions by this Administration that it is easy
to forget last week's scandal amid this week's new outrage. I am hopeful
that compiling all of these events of the last few years will help wake
all of us up to the gravity of these matters and the cumulative damage to
our country.

We have a mountain of reports that strongly indicate that this
Administration was well aware that Iraq had no weapons of mass
destruction, even as they told the Congress and the American people the
opposite in order to satisfy a predetermination to go to war. The "smoking
gun" of these reports is the Downing Street Memoranda, contemporaneous
reports from the highest reaches of the British government recounting
meetings with their American counterparts, meetings where the facts were
being fixed around the policy of going to war.

We have a mountain of statements from Administration officials making
claims designed to conflate Saddam Hussein with Al Qaeda, and
corresponding mountains of reports that credible intelligence officials in
our government disputed such claims. We also have evidence showing that
government officials instituted policies which endorsed the use of torture
in violation of U.S. law and international treaties.

We have scores of sources indicating the Administration engaged in a
concerted effort to discredit and defame anyone who came forward to expose
these outrages, and have largely done so without consequence. When
Ambassador Joseph Wilson dared to question whether Iraq had a nuclear
weapons program, Administration officials retaliated against him by outing
his wife as an undercover C.I.A. operative. When General Eric Shinseki and
others in the military dared to dispute the Administration's wildly
optimistic assessments of what was needed to pursue the Iraq conflict, he
was summarily replaced. The pattern repeats itself with former Treasury
Secretary Paul O'Neill and Economic Adviser Larry Lindsey. And Cindy
Sheehan. And the list goes on and on.

The American people have paid the price for this strategy of deception
followed by, in the words of one anonymous Republican official, "slime and
defend." We have paid with the lives of more than 2,500 of our sons and
daughters in uniform and in hundreds of billions of dollars of our taxes.

The Administration also appears to have used the war on terror as an
excuse to eviscerate the basic protections afforded to us in the
Constitution. There have been warrantless wiretaps of law-abiding
Americans, in clear contravention of federal law, not to mention the
creation of a huge unchecked database of the phone records of innocent
Americans.

All the while, the Republican Congress sits idly by. Rather than
performing its constitutional duty as a co-equal branch, it has chosen to
stymie any and all efforts at oversight. After six long years of
deceptions, attacks and yes, outright lies, I am convinced the American
people have had enough.

[Now if Mr Conyers would only report on his own lacklustre war-sactioning
party... - ed]


--------18 of 18--------

 I'd like to write a
 haiku, but all too soon I'm
 out of room at the


 More than seventeen
 syllables and the haiku
 nazi snips off the


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   - David Shove             shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu
   rhymes with clove         Progressive Calendar
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