December 30, 2008
At 10 am cypriot time, a ship flying the flag of Gibraltar was rammed by surrounding Israeli gunboats. The Dignity is carrying 3 tons of aid and passengers from around the world. Journalists (including CNN’s Karl Penhaul), human rights activists, doctors and US representative Cynthia McKinney. Shots were fired into the water by the Israeli Navy.
SS Dignity rammed.
The ship was rammed in international waters, 90 miles off the Gaza coast, and is said to be taking on water. There are no reported injuries to the passengers on board. Lebanon has granted a permission to dock and will lend assistance. (Free Gaza website)
SS Dignity has docked in Lebanon as jubilant crowds welcome the vessel. Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor has suggested the incident occurred when SS Liberty tried to outmaneuver the Israeli gunboats, crashing into one of them (yalibnan). This statement is in direct conflict Free Gaza’s version of events. Cyprus (who previously had port authorities search the boat for dangerous cargo) and Lebanon’s governments intend to protest Israel.
CNN’s reporter on board the ship claims the SS Dignity was rammed without warning and later was accused by the Israelis of being involved in terrorist activities. Images from CNN show damage to the boat. Cynthia McKinney claims yacht was rammed 3 times and calls for Obama to make a statement on the humanitarian crisis in Gaza. The CNN report also highlights claims the SS Dignity attempted to run the blcokade. Cynthia McKinney dismissed the claims as misinformation. CNN
December 29, 2008
The Rubin Ponzi Scheme.
Madoff makes headlines as former Treasury Secretary, Robert Rubin, slips under the media’s radar.
On 4 december 2008, the New York Post announced a federal lawsuit had been filed against Citigroup’s Robert Rubin, and former citi CEO, Prince.
The 2 are alleged to have played a role in a Ponzi scheme which has wiped out trillions of dollars worldwide.
The lawsuit says Citigroup’s shareholder value lost over 122 billion dollars. This would suggest that Rubin is accused of involvement in a scheme that would dwarf that of Madoff.
When the news broke of Madeoff’s scheme, the media jumped to cover the story. Time magazine even suggested the story as a contender in the top 10 scandals of 2008.
Why was the New York Post the only mainstream media source to have covered Robert Rubin’s story?
The independent media and the blogosphere picked up on it though. LiveLeak and other sites on the internet noted conspiracy researcher Henry Makow highlighting Rubin’s high profile links to the president elect Barack Hussein Obamah, as a possible reason for the silence. Rubin’s son Jamie was the main fund raiser on Wall Street for Obama.
Infact, the Wall Street Journal pointed out that Obama’s aides have Rubin down as a contender for treasury secretary. Both the New York Times and the Times of London refer to Rubin’s influence in Obama’s selection of his economic team, dubbed, the Robert Rubin Memorial All Stars.
While a wide spectrum of the media brought the sensationalism of madeoff’s scheme to the public. Rubin’s potentially more destructive scheme, has received virtually no coverage at all.
August 12, 2008
Russian president orders end to conflict.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev ordered the end of military action in Georgia and it’s breakaway territories. The president also ordered his defense minister to destroy any remaining pockets of active Georgian resistance.
The president claims the Georgians have been punished enough for their attack on Russian citizens and peace-keepers and that the Georgian military has been disorganized (Associated Press).
Georgians hastily retreat to capital.
The past 12 hours have seen the Georgians either surrendering (RIAN) or retreating to Tsibili (Sky News). Both sides have shown images of POWs on their national television, despite the Geneva Convention.
The end of the conflict no doubt a relief for the Georgian President under the heat of a Russian army making steadfast progress towards his presidential palace. The Georgian town of Gori (outside of the breakaway provinces) is reportedly also occupied by Russian forces (Times Online). It is unknown what Russia intends to do with this city. A dutch cameraman for RTL was killed in a Russian bombing raid last night (Reuters).
French envoy for a peace treaty, Sarkozy arrived in Moscow just before the halt was ordered. Russia is demanding that Georgia stays out of South Ossetia and aggrees to relent from using force in resolving the political situation (ABC).
August 11, 2008
Col. Sam Gardiner notes, in an interview with Amy Goodman on Democracy Now, Russia has deployed tactical nuclear weapons to South Ossetia. The SS-21 Missile launchers are relatively weak compared to bombs that have already been used against Georgia by the Russian air force. However, this move does indicate Russia is potentially upping the game from a conventional weapons war to a tactical nuclear weapons war. Gardiner notes that at a news conference on Sunday, the US Deputy National Security advisor has noted these weapons arriving in South Ossetia.
Business Wire confirms the subject matter of the news briefing in Beijing. Link
August 11, 2008
Israel Blocks Arms Sales to Georgia
Russia Today has reported that Israel is to stop all arms sales with Georgia following a complaint from Moscow. link
Russia moves into Georgia outside of South Ossetia
Georgia claims it ordered a ceasefire on Sunday morning, Russia claims that Georgia’s military was still engaged and had not respected the ceasefire (BBC).
Talk of Georgian War Crimes and Genocide
American eye-witness condemns America’s support for georgia and refers to genocide at the hands of Georgia. See the above video from Russia Today. The Russian broadcaster also reports both Russian president and prime-minister accusing Georgia of genocide. link
August 11, 2008
A report from Russian newspaper Izvestia claims an African-American soldier was captured with some Georgian soldiers. He has apparently been transferred to the Russian Vladikavkaz army base. If these claims are true the question has to be whether he was actively involved in the conflict.
US training Georgia in ordinances.
The Georgians he was supposedly detained with specialize in handling ordinances. What is known is that US soldiers have been training the Georgian military in dealing with ordinances. The above photo is from a US military website describing US training Georgia in precisely that.
Questionable photograph used by Life News. Nevertheless, the capture is confirmed by many Russian media outlets in radio, TV, web and press.
The Russian article was found by the War News Updates blog, the Russian newspaper’s website is inaccessible at this time in London. However, Russian magazine Life News is also reporting this story and has published the above photograph. The publication suggests he may be a NATO instructor.