Reports on Protest & Resistance

Banks Making Off Like Thieves in Bailout

By Kenneth J. Theisen

Imagine going to a bank and asking for a few billion dollars. When the banker asks what you are going to do with it, you tell him to go screw himself. He then gives you the money anyway. Yes, that is hard to imagine. But if you are the bank, and the institution giving you the bucks is Congress, it is perfectly plausible. 


A recent article written by the Associated Press (AP) indicates that the tax payers were given the royal screwing by the banks. (original story here)
The AP contacted 21 banks that were beneficiaries of the recent government bailout. Each of the banks received at least $1 billion from our taxpayer dollars. Four questions were asked and the answers, in effect, were “go screw yourself.” The questions were, “How much has been spent? What was it spent on? How much is being held in savings, and what's the plan for the rest?


Cheney Throws Down Gauntlet, Defies Prosecution for War Crimes


By Marjorie Cohn 

Vice President Dick Cheney has admitted to authorizing torture.
Dick Cheney has publicly confessed to ordering war crimes. Asked about waterboarding in an ABC News interview, Cheney replied, "I was aware of the program, certainly, and involved in helping get the process cleared." He also said he still believes waterboarding was an appropriate method to use on terrorism suspects. CIA Director Michael Hayden confirmed that the agency waterboarded three al-Qaeda suspects in 2002 and 2003.
US courts have long held that waterboarding, where water is poured into someone's nose and mouth until he nearly drowns, constitutes torture. Our federal War Crimes Act defines torture as a war crime punishable by life imprisonment or even the death penalty if the victim dies.
Under the doctrine of command responsibility, enshrined in US law, commanders all the way up the chain of command to the commander in chief can be held liable for war crimes if they knew or should have known their subordinates would commit them and they did nothing to stop or prevent it.
Why is Cheney so sanguine about admitting he is a war criminal? Because he's confident that either President Bush will preemptively pardon him or President-elect Obama won't prosecute him.



Additional Felony Charges Against 8 Arrested Protesting Republicans in St. Paul


Lawyers for 8 people arrested at the Republican National Convention last September were recently informed that the Ramsey County (Minnesota) District Attorney's office has added three additional felony charges to the case. The amended charges brought by D.S. Susan Gaertner contain 4 felony counts of conspiracy: conspiracy to riot in the second degree in furtherance of terrorism (the original charge); conspiracy to riot in the second degree (without terrorism enhancement); conspiracy to damage property in furtherance of terrorism: conspiracy to damage property (without terrorism enhancement).
If convicted, the 8 people face over 2 decades in prison.



Iraqi Reporter Throws Shoes at Bush, Calls Him ‘Dog'

By Reuters

BAGHDAD - An Iraqi reporter called visiting U.S. President George W. Bush a "dog" in Arabic on Sunday and threw his shoes at him during a news conference in Baghdad.
Iraqi security officers and U.S. secret service agents leapt at the man and dragged him struggling and screaming out of the room where Bush was giving a news conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.
The shoes missed their target about 15 feet (4.5 metres) away. One sailed over Bush's head as he stood next to Maliki and smacked into the wall behind him. Bush smiled uncomfortably and Maliki looked strained.
"It doesn't bother me," Bush said, urging everyone to calm down as a ruckus broke out in the conference room.
When asked about the incident shortly after, Bush made light of it. "I didn't feel the least threatened by it," he said.
Other Iraqi journalists apologised on behalf of their colleague, a television journalist.
Bush arrived in Baghdad earlier on Sunday on a farewell visit before he leaves office in January. The U.S.-led invasion in 2003 to topple Saddam Hussein triggered years of sectarian bloodshed and insurgency in Iraq, killing tens of thousands

Bush Comparison Seen As Unfair to Dogs


By David Swanson

This is the question now raised in Iraq: If they throw shoes at your face are you a combat troop or a noncombat troop? The answer may be important in helping to guide President Elect Obama's strategy of reducing but continuing the genocidal occupation that has made a shoeless journalist one of the most beloved, if little known, people in the world overnight.

A related dilemma is this: If shoes become weapons, were the metal detectors, searches, and bribes to phony journalists successful? This strikes me as a similar question to the following: if box cutters become weapons, were the nuclear arsenal, the missile offense shield, and the empire of bases successful?

That all depends upon what the goal was, I suppose. If the goal encompassed the well-being of only one person, then success may have been achieved. Dallas mansion, six-figure speeches, and drunk golfing here I come! But no dog's goal would ever be so narrow, and animal rights groups can be expected to speak out against Muntadar al-Zeidi's comparison of George W. Bush to a dog. I also hope human rights groups will be closely monitoring the well-being of this shoe-throwing hero to billions.


The Rich Suffer Too: Yacht Club Waiting Lists Impose Hardships

By Kenneth J. Theisen

Capitalism is a great system, if you happen to be one of the capitalists. Here are a few facts that I discovered while researching other articles for this site. I think they seriously call in to question the legitimacy of the government and the economic system in the U.S. but I will let the facts speak for themselves.
In the United States at the end of 2001, the top 1% of the population controlled 38% of the nation’s wealth. The top 10% owned 71% of the wealth. The bottom 40% owned less than 1% of the nation's wealth.



Strangling Dissent, Muzzling Whistleblowers

By Dennis Loo

Two news/story items came across my desk in the last couple of days that share something vital in common even though they look on the surface like opposites. The first concerns a Washington Post Op-Ed by Matt Miller, Senior Fellow with the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, and ex-Clinton OMB official. The second is news about universities like Penn State and Temple that are encouraging students to lodge complaints against their professors for being “one-sided” or bringing up material not “germane” to the course.

In the Post Op-Ed, Miller calls for the Obama administration to ban any “kiss and tell” books from White House insiders--making serving in the administration the equivalent of omertà, the mafia’s code of silence--for five years after leaving the administration. 


40,000 Show up for Free Food? Police Give Out Parking Tickets!

By Kenneth J. Theisen
// Last Saturday, November 22, 2008 an event took place that says something about present day America. A farm couple in Colorado decided to do something for their neighbors. They opened their farm fields after the harvest to allow people to glean the fields. Gleaning is the ancient practice of picking up farm crops after the regular harvest. Typically some of the crops are left in the fields by machines or harvesters and this gleaning eliminates waste, while feeding people at the same time. I grew up in Iowa and some of my relatives that lived on farms would do this each year. Usually a hundred people or less would show up at the gleaning on my relatives" farms.


Anti-WAR Forum: No Matter Who is President

People in the United States Have the Responsibility to Stop the Endless Wars  

When: Tuesday, November 11, 7:00 pm

Where: Judson Memorial Church, 55 Washington Square South, NYC

Speakers: Scott Ritter, Larry Everest, Jeremy Scahill, Elaine Brower

Following the election of Barack Obama, noted critics and activists against the US occupation of Iraq will speak on the responsibilities of people in the United States to continue to oppose "endless wars."  The public is invited.


'Many dead' in Afghan Air Strike

From BBC news

American officials in Afghanistan have confirmed that a number of civilians have been killed in an air strike. The incident happened in Kandahar province late on Tuesday evening when a wedding party was bombed.

A local member of parliament told the BBC that as many as 38 people may have died. Details are still emerging. President Karzai has repeatedly criticised the high level of civilian casualties from coalition bombings and called on Barack Obama to stop them. The latest incident underlines the challenges ahead for US President-elect and future commander-in-chief.


Hawai'i Festival of Resistance


World Can't Wait held its annual "Festival of Resistance" on the University of Hawai`i - Manoa campus Friday, October 26th. During the week prior to the festival more than 100 brilliant orange signs were hung from trees and railings: "Stop Torture" - "No Strykers" - "Stop the War" - "Pro Choice" - "No Human Being is Illegal" - "Arrest Bush & Cheney" and many more. A "Join the Festival of Resistance" banner stayed up in a central square for the entire week.

The morning of the festival activists put up another hundred signs all over campus, and big banners were dropped from building rooftops: "Before And After the Elections - We Are Still Against the War," "No Torture," "U.S. Military Out of Makua," "Stop Police Brutality," "No Attack on Iran,"" The entire area around Campus Center was covered with banners and signs and AFSC's display of boots and shoes symbolizing victims of war were lined up on the Campus Center steps.


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World Can't Wait mobilizes people living in the United States to stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government. We take action, regardless of which political party holds power, to expose the crimes of our government, from war crimes to systematic mass incarceration, and to put humanity and the planet first.