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  • Wednesday, December 29, 2004

    A Logical Voice 2004 Review ( Part 1 - January to June)

    January The year began with US troops raiding a Sunni Muslim mosque, searching, they said for weapons. At a time when the Bush regime, and Blair and Co were still attempting to paint forces as "liberators", rather than "occupiers" the families of some Iraqis captured by forces complained that there had been cases of mistaken identity. Meanwhile, British troops were accused of kicking to death 8 Iraqis arrested in Basra according to a report in the Independent on Sunday; and in Britain, Blair was saying that he was ready to quit if the Hutton report (widely regarded as a whitewash) proved him to have lied over the Dr David Kelly death. However, Hutton was found by Mr Mandelson (now an EU Commissioner), a close friend of Blair's, so he was hardly going to lay any blame at the door of Blair & Co was he? Also in January, Colin Powell admitted for the first time that there were no links between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein's regime, Blair admitted he hadn't got a clue whether or not Iraq had any Weapons of Mass Destruction and reports surfaced about Blunkett planning to extend holding prisoners without trial to UK citizens. February Reports surfaced at the beginning of February that Israel knew Iraq had no Weapons of Mass Destruction. Also, Blair & Co's assertions about the so called "45 minute threat" from Iraq fell apart this month, also the case for a suicide of Dr David Kelly fell apart. Also in February 2004, despite growing concerns of increased tensions between India and Pakistan, there were several reports that the US, Russia and Israel were busy supplying India with arms, there was a US led coup in Haiti (US marines additionally entered the country on the 29th February), and there were numerous reports of a possible military draft in spring 2005 for citizens of the US. March On the 6th March, a convicted conman whose ex fiance was a close friend of Cherie Blair (the PM's wife) went public with the claim that while he was living with Carole Caplin in London in 2002, she was having an "intimate relationship" with the Prime Minister, on the same day a report surfaced that an Al Qaeda linked man in Afghanistan was working as a CIA operative. On the 11th March, scores died in Madrid as explosions rocked the city, The pro war Spanish leader, Aznar was later ousted from power in a move widely seen to be punishment ("as no Spanish leader had ever been punished before", as one commentator put it) for his stance close to Bush. On the 20th March there were international demonstrations on the 1st anniversary of the illegal invasion of Iraq, millions took to the streets around the world, 100,000 were reported to have demonstrated in the streets of London alone. Also in March there were numerous reports that torture is routinely used at Guanatanamo, there was also a report that the US Department of Justice had asked an FBI translator to re-translate and adjust the translations of "subject intercepts" that had been received by the CIA and FBI before the 11th September 2001. April In April there were several reports that some US soldiers were heading to Canada to seek asylum, rather than having to commit any war crimes in Iraq. Meanwhile, the US military lost control of 2 Iraqi cities, Najaf and Kut. On the 13th April, reports surfaced that the military was taking part in mysterious hauling missions in southern Iraq. According to sources in one report, "a large part of the WMD, which was secretly brought to southern and western Iraq over the past month, are in containers falsely labeled as containers of the Maeresk shipping company and some consignments bearing the labels of organizations such as the Red Cross or the USAID in order to disguise them as relief shipments." May Reports were beginning to come to light that US torture and abuse of detainees was ordered by those higher up the chain of command. There were also claims of British abuse of detainees, but the photos these claims were based on were later proved to be fakes. Also in May, it was widely believed that Blair was about to go, as reports showed that Blair did not have the confidence of his party; The editor of a US funded Iraqi newspaper quit, saying that the US expected too much control over the news, more than 5,000 blasts an hour were reported in Ukraine after ammunition explosions at a military depot showered parts of south-eastern Ukraine with shells and shrapnel for three days, and there were reports that hundreds of prisoners were held at Abu Ghraib for long periods even though there was no evidence that they posed a security threat to US forces. June Local and European elections were held this month, Blair's Labour party lost about 480 local council seats, while the Tories gained about 280, and the Lib Dems gained about 140 seats. In June, it was also reported that the US military had issued an order to prevent thousands of soldiers designated for duty in Iraq or Afghanistan from leaving the military even when their volunteer service commitment expires. Also in June, Blair claimed his "special relationship" with Bush is a "sensible" thing to do, half a million people protested the torturer in chief on his visit to Rome, and a top Chinese general called the United States "a whore" for suggesting that Taiwan try to destroy the Three Gorges Dam, while maintaining that it could never be hit by Taipei's conventional arms. Part 2 - July to December 2004


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