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Week of October 31 2005
Libby Indictment Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby, was indicted on 5 charges, including obstruction of justice and perjury. See video of the announcement by special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald on C-SPAN as well as the White House Press Briefing. For background information, see the Wikipedia Plame affair timeline and a description of the CIA leak scandal.
A number of groups are calling for action. True Majority urges you to tell Congress to demand a full investigation. Working for Change has a petition calling for Bush to renounce any potential use of presidential pardon in the case. Public Citizen asks "Why Did We Go To War?" and calls for Congress to investigate. And finally, MoveOn makes it easy for you to send a letter to the editor of your favorite newspaper.
Miers Nomination Withdrawn. Next up: Alito The good news is the Supreme Court nomination of Harriet Miers has been withdrawn. The bad, that this was largely a product of pressure from the extreme right. In fact, confirmation hearings had yet to be held. And now we have the nomination of Samuel Alito, whose right wing judicial record has earned him the nickname "Scalito". For more information on Judge Alito, see People for the American Way's Save The Court web site which includes a way for you to send a message to your senators urging them to oppose this nomination. MoveOn is also trying to collect 250,000 signatures on a petition against this nomination in just 48 hours.
Update: MoveOn was able to collect over 350,000 signatures in just 24 hours. They've now set the goal at 500,000. Sign the petition.
The Deadliness Below Read an article from The Daily Press of Hampton Roads, Virginia regarding the Army's secret ocean-dumping program from 1944 to 1970. The Army admits to dumping 64 million pounds of nerve and mustard agents, 400,000 chemical-filled bombs, land mines and rockets and more than 500 tons of radioactive waste.
Wal-Mart Memo and Upcoming Documentary The New York Times published an article on a Wal-Mart internal memo with a number of creative proposals for keeping the costs of benefits down. Read the article and the 27 page memo [pdf]. You can also sign the Six Demands for Change petition on the Wakeup Wal-Mart web site.
Body Counts On Wednesday, October 26, 1354 vigils were held in all 50 states of the U.S. marking the 2000th military death in Iraq. Read accounts of the vigils and see photos on the MoveOn web site. ANSWER has set up an online People's Speakout where you can express your outrage and read postings from others.
But not everyone thinks this is a tragedy. On October 13, Brit Hume, host of the Fox News program Special Report remarked that "by historic standards, these casualties are negligible." Read about it on the FAIR web site and send Brit Hume a message with your thoughts: email@example.com
Operation Truth, an organization of veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, are calling on the press to honor the fallen with casualty reports. See their web site for a tool to send a letter to the editor of your favorite newspaper.
And finally, after insisting that the U.S. military has no figures on Iraqi deaths, the Pentagon admitted to keeping track of civilian casualties: 26,000 dead or wounded, averaging between 26 to 64 per day. Oddly, they were all victims of the insurgency. No data has been released on civilians killed or wounded by U.S. Forces. Read an article on the Independent.
Upcoming Actions in the U.S. - Tell Your Friends Not In Our Name is organizing a national day of die-ins on November 2, 2005. They join The World Can't Wait in their efforts to Drive Out the Bush Regime, with local actions planned in many states on the same day.
A number or groups are planning a National Stand Down Day on November 18, 2005, calling for non violent resistance at military recruitment stations across the country.
And SOA Watch is organizing a 3 Day Convergence on the School of the Americas at Fort Benning in Georgia calling for the closure of this notorious school.
Please let your friends in the U.S. know about these actions and encourage them to participate.
Darfur Vote Likely Next Week A vote in the Senate on the Darfur Peace and Accountability Act will likely take place this week. A number of Senators, who co-sponsored an earlier bill, have yet to co-sponsor this new act. See the Save Darfur web site to urge those senators to take action on this bill. This is urgent as Senator Bill Frist has indicated he will introduce a substitute Sense of the Senate resolution on Darfur, which would involve no expenditure of public funds, would not be legally binding, and would have no formal effect on public policy.
Bush Crimes Commission
The first session of the International Commission of Inquiry On Crimes Against Humanity Committed by the Bush Administration was held October 21-22. Audio coverage of keynote addresses by Howard Zinn, Marcus Raskin, Ann Wright and Michael Ratner as well as testimony from Katrina survivors and activists is available.
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Photo of a school in Yemen bombed by Saudi Arabian jets supplied by the U.S. and fueled in the air by the U.S. Air Force.
Tell Trump to STOP THIS CARNAGE, not fuel it! Click here.
Also participate in the CodePink email and/or phone initiative:
Click here to sign a petition, to put an end to the sanctions against Syria - their only effect is to take a terrible toll on the population, causing them to migrate! And click here to see the video by the Italian Committee to lift sanctions against Syria.
Did someone tell you that U.S. military intervention in Iraq was over? Not true: we're at it again. This time the pretext to drop bombs is "curbing ISIS" (which was created by the U.S. in the first place, to overturn al-Malaki in Iraq and then Assad in Syria, and is now out of hand.
Like what happened to "our" creature al Qaeda in Afghanistan). And the death toll continues to rise...
Write your senators and tell them: "Enough! U.S. out!! Iraq has shown it can curb ISIS by itself!"