Make a Comprehensive Commitment to Zero-to-Five Education and Family Support: Hillary knows that the only way we are going to give every child a chance in life is to start them out right. As president, she’ll launch a major Zero-to-Five initiative that includes:
Nurse-Home Visitation for Every New At-Risk Mother. Building on her long history of working to expand home visiting programs in Arkansas and First Lady, Hillary will expand The Nurse Family Partnership program, one of the most proven interventions for improving child outcomes for at-risk children. This program sends qualified nurses to meet with first time, at risk, pregnant women to help them maintain their prenatal health and develop their parenting skills. Over fifteen years this program has achieved stunning results: 48 percent less incidence of child abuse and neglect; an 83 percent increase in workforce participation by low-income unmarried mothers; 69 percent fewer convictions at age 15; 56 percent fewer doctor and hospital visits due to childhood injuries through child age; and a 25 percent reduction in cigarette smoking by mothers during pregnancy. As president, Hillary will ensure that every new at-risk mother is offered access to this valuable intervention.
Tripling Early Head Start and Growing Head Start Enrollment by 160,000 Children. Early Head Start and Head Start provides comprehensive services for young children (ages 0-3) and their families living in poverty. These programs provide home visits, health, nutrition, pre-literacy and a strong focus on children’s social and emotional development. As President, Hillary will triple enrollment in Early Head Start, which she helped create when she was First Lady, and grow Head Start’s enrollment by 160,000 children.
Providing Universal Pre-K. Hillary will provide $10 billion to create a federal-state partnership aimed at making high-quality pre-kindergarten available to every four year old, starting with those living in poverty. Hillary’s plan will enable states that have achieved that benchmark to spend the money on other early childhood development initiatives.
Expanding Access to Affordable, Quality Child Care. The Bush Administration has essentially frozen the level of child care funding for the last eight years. As a result, the real purchasing power of child care subsidies has fallen significantly. According to the Bush Administration’s own estimates, 300,000 children will lose child care assistance by 2010, and 150,000 have already lost child care assistance since 2000. Hillary will increase child care funding through the Child Care and Development Block Grant and return the program to it’s original intent: to serve working families. She will also work with Congress to reform the Dependent Care Tax Credit to address its shortcomings. And she will improve the quality of child care by investing in:
Helping states improve and enforce licensing and safety standards;
Supporting innovative public-private partnerships that increase the supply of affordable, high quality child care for working families;
Promoting and supporting quality rating systems that help families evaluate programs; and
Supporting workforce initiatives that help child care providers get the right training.
Enabling Working Parents to Take Leave to Stay Home with Their Children. Hillary has long supported giving every parent a real choice about whether to stay home and care for their children full time or work outside the home. That is why she is proposing to allow qualifying, low-income parents who want to stay at home rather than place their children in child care to receive child care subsidies through the Child Care Development Block Grant. This program would award grants to states to support stay-at-home parents. Currently, only parents who place their children in child care are eligible to receive assistance to the Child Care Development Block Grant.
That is from Hillary Clinton's "Giving Every Child a Chance" and that really stood out to me. Kat has written already about one aspect of it that stood out to her but I am choosing the above for a reason.
If you were not a parent or a grandparent in the last few years, of a young child, you may have missed all the efforts of the White House to destroy Head Start. I read the above and thought about when Senator Clinton teared up in New Hampshire as she spoke about the erosions of rights we had won and how we needed to fight to preserve them. She is correct.
The above is a response to all the people who have attempted to dismantle Head Start, to all the people fine with underfunding the programs for our country's children. Senator Clinton will fight as president to make sure that does not happen. I do not know that Senator Barack Obama will. From his own words, he is more concerned about reaching across the aisle. Though I have more than just Social Security, I am alarmed by his efforts to signal his willingness to dismantle that program. I have no faith or "hope" that he will not be so eager to "reach across the asile" that he will stand up for Head Start.
By the time my first child was in school, my late husband and I are were well off. He was a doctor and I did not need to work. But I volunteered anytime they needed me. I would work in the lunch room if they called and said someone was out. There were children who, if they did not have Head Start, would not have had a breakfast that morning. That happened then and it happens today across the country.
What kind of a message do we send to them when they grow up in hunger?
At the elementary school all my sons went to, there was generally cinnamon rolls and cold cereal with milk. You would see the children who ate because they enjoyed the food and you would see the children who ate like there was no tomorrow because they were so hungry. There are so many important programs that help children today and they are underfunded and under attack.
Maybe your child is always well fed and you are thinking, "Ruth, this does not apply to me?" But it does apply to you because how closely is a child going to follow the lesson with a hungry and growling stomach? It will effect what your well fed child is able to learn because teachers do not pitch the lesson to the highest in the class, they pitch to the middle. Some poor child with hunger pains is not going to be able to follow along as quickly or as easily. That is why programs that make sure children have coats and food and all the other basics are so important for all of us. It should be enough that we want all children to do well. But if that is not enough, you need to realize that a child without the same basics is not a child who can follow along as easily as he or she could if those primary needs were being taken care of.
It is not "welfare." Children do not work. They do not receive "welfare." It is assistance to pull everyone up to the basic standard. The Republicans made very clear, along with the White House, that they have an attitude of "It's your own fault." That attitude is applied to children as well. Apparently, it is a child's fault for being born. But at the same time, remember, they are anti-choice.
All children need love and all children deserve to have the basics. When my husband passed away a few years ago, I was in a deep, deep funk and it took forever to emerge from that. Though I went to college, and got a degree, I can tell you that if he had died when my children were young, I would have needed a lot of help. I would have been very lost. I certainly, working a full time job, could not have provided the same things my family was used to. That is true for many parents, whether they lose a spouse to death or divorce, whether they have a spouse or not. With the soaring inflation and the lowering economy, many families with one or two parents are doing the best they can and that still does not provide for the basics. That could be any one of us if things went really sour one day.
It is not about a "gift." It is about the country caring enough for the people to provide a "safety net." To make sure that people are not falling through. After all the White House "tax cuts" or give aways to the rich in the last seven years, the working people of this country really are under attack.
A lovely speech will not help them eat. A fighter for a president, someone who really wants to fight for them, is what is needed.
This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for Friday:
Friday, February 29, 2008. Chaos and violence continue, a priest is kidnapped in Mosul, the Turkish invasion of nothern Iraq apparently ends, and more.
Starting with war resistance. Courage to Resist interviews war resister Robin Long who is seeking safe harbor status in Canada. Long was stationed at Fort Knox and hearing stories from returning service members that didn't have a thing to do with democracy. "In the army you just want to fit in," Long explained noting how the US military uses collective punishment to discipline their own -- which is to create a shunning among the enlisted. Those returning from Iraq, "a lot of them were bragging about I guess you could say what was going on there," Long explained, and he was hearing and seeing things that weren't being covered in the media such as pictures of the first kill ("holding a head up" for the photo "and smiling with a peace sign," photos of an Iraqi run over by a jeep, etc.). After self-checking out of the military, he stayed in a friend's basement for two months and then went to Canada with two friends. At the border, Long was asked if he was AWOL ("which I found out later that they weren't allowed to do") and replied that he was on leave. About his decision, Long says he has no second thoughts. If he is deported would he be stopped at the US border and taken to jail? Long shared that war resister Brad McCall had a friend take his car back to the United States and when the car crossed the border into the US "they were holding him at gun point, the guy that was bringing his car back, thinking that he was the war resister. So that's a pretty good idea of what's going to happen to me if I try to cross the border. If I'm deported they're going to be waiting there."
War resisters who have moved to Canada were dealt a serious set-back when the Canadian Supreme Court refused to hear the appeals of Jeremy Hinzman and Brandon Hughey. Today, Canada's Parliament remaining the best hope for safe harbor war resisters have, you can make your voice heard by the Canadian parliament which has the ability to pass legislation to grant war resisters the right to remain in Canada. Three e-mails addresses to focus on are: Prime Minister Stephen Harper (firstname.lastname@example.org -- that's pm at gc.ca) who is with the Conservative party and these two Liberals, Stephane Dion (Dion.S@parl.gc.ca -- that's Dion.S at parl.gc.ca) who is the leader of the Liberal Party and Maurizio Bevilacqua (Bevilacqua.M@parl.gc.ca -- that's Bevilacqua.M at parl.gc.ca) who is the Liberal Party's Critic for Citizenship and Immigration. A few more can be found here at War Resisters Support Campaign. For those in the US, Courage to Resist has an online form that's very easy to use. That is the sort of thing that should receive attention but instead it's ignored.
There is a growing movement of resistance within the US military which includes Matt Mishler, Josh Randall, Robby Keller, Justiniano Rodrigues, Chuck Wiley, James Stepp, Rodney Watson, Michael Espinal, Matthew Lowell, Derek Hess, Diedra Cobb, Brad McCall, Justin Cliburn, Timothy Richard, Robert Weiss, Phil McDowell, Steve Yoczik, Ross Spears, Peter Brown, Bethany "Skylar" James, Zamesha Dominique, Chrisopther Scott Magaoay, Jared Hood, James Burmeister, Eli Israel, Joshua Key, Ehren Watada, Terri Johnson, Clara Gomez, Luke Kamunen, Leif Kamunen, Leo Kamunen, Camilo Mejia, Kimberly Rivera, Dean Walcott, Linjamin Mull, Agustin Aguayo, Justin Colby, Marc Train, Abdullah Webster, Robert Zabala, Darrell Anderson, Kyle Snyder, Corey Glass, Jeremy Hinzman, Kevin Lee, Mark Wilkerson, Patrick Hart, Ricky Clousing, Ivan Brobeck, Aidan Delgado, Pablo Paredes, Carl Webb, Stephen Funk, Blake LeMoine, Clifton Hicks, David Sanders, Dan Felushko, Brandon Hughey, Clifford Cornell, Joshua Despain, Joshua Casteel, Katherine Jashinski, Dale Bartell, Chris Teske, Matt Lowell, Jimmy Massey, Chris Capps, Tim Richard, Hart Viges, Michael Blake, Christopher Mogwai, Christian Kjar, Kyle Huwer, Wilfredo Torres, Michael Sudbury, Ghanim Khalil, Vincent La Volpa, DeShawn Reed and Kevin Benderman. In total, at least fifty US war resisters in Canada have applied for asylum.
Information on war resistance within the military can be found at The Objector, The G.I. Rights Hotline [(877) 447-4487], Iraq Veterans Against the War and the War Resisters Support Campaign. Courage to Resist offers information on all public war resisters. Tom Joad maintains a list of known war resisters. In addition, VETWOW is an organization that assists those suffering from MST (Military Sexual Trauma).
Meanwhile IVAW is organizing a March 2008 DC action:
In 1971, over one hundred members of Vietnam Veterans Against the War gathered in Detroit to share their stories with America. Atrocities like the My Lai massacre had ignited popular opposition to the war, but political and military leaders insisted that such crimes were isolated exceptions. The members of VVAW knew differently.
Over three days in January, these soldiers testified on the systematic brutality they had seen visited upon the people of Vietnam. They called it the Winter Soldier investigation, after Thomas Paine's famous admonishing of the "summer soldier" who shirks his duty during difficult times. In a time of war and lies, the veterans who gathered in Detroit knew it was their duty to tell the truth.
Over thirty years later, we find ourselves faced with a new war. But the lies are the same. Once again, American troops are sinking into increasingly bloody occupations. Once again, war crimes in places like Haditha, Fallujah, and Abu Ghraib have turned the public against the war. Once again, politicians and generals are blaming "a few bad apples" instead of examining the military policies that have destroyed Iraq and Afghanistan.
Once again, our country needs Winter Soldiers.
In March of 2008, Iraq Veterans Against the War will gather in our nation's capital to break the silence and hold our leaders accountable for these wars. We hope you'll join us, because yours is a story that every American needs to hear.
Click here to sign a statement of support for Winter Soldier: Iraq & Afghanistan
March 13th through 16th are the dates for the Winter Soldier Iraq & Afghanistan Investigation. Dee Knight (Workers World) notes, "IVAW wants as many people as possible to attend the event. It is planning to provide live broadcasting of the sessions for those who cannot hear the testimony firsthand. 'We have been inspired by the tremendous support the movement has shown us,' IVAW says. 'We believe the success of Winter Soldier will ultimately depend on the support of our allies and the hard work of our members'." As part of their fundraising efforts for the event, they are holding houseparties and a recent one in Boston featured both IVAW's Liam Madden and the incomprable Howard Zinn as speakers. IVAW's co-chair Adam Kokesh will, of course, be participating and he explains why at his site, "But out of a strong sense of duty, some of us are trying to put our experiences to use for a good cause. Some of us couldn't live with ourselves if weren't doing everything we could to bring our brothers and sisters home as soon as possible. The environment may be unking, but that is why I will be testifying to shooting at civilians as a result of changing Rules of Engagement, abuse of detainees, and desecration of Iraqi bodies. It won't be easy but it must be done. Some of the stories are things that are difficult to admit that I was a part of, but if one more veteran realizes that they are not alone because of my testimony it will be worth it."
Aaron Glantz (at IPS) writes about the March action:
Iraq Veterans Against the War is calling the gathering "Winter Soldier," after a quote from the U.S. revolutionary Thomas Paine, who wrote in 1776: "These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman." Organisers say video and photographic evidence will also be presented, and the testimony and panels will be broadcast live on Satellite TV and streaming video on ivaw.org. Winter Soldier is modeled on a similar event held by Vietnam Veterans 37 years ago. In 1971, over 100 members of Vietnam Veterans Against the War gathered in Detroit to share their stories with fellow citizens. Atrocities like the My Lai massacre had ignited popular opposition to the war, but political and military leaders insisted that such crimes were isolated exceptions. "Initially even the My Lai massacre was denied," notes Gerald Nicosia, whose book "Home to War" provides the most exhaustive history of the Vietnam veterans' movement. "The U.S. military has traditionally denied these accusations based on the fact that 'this is a crazy soldier' or 'this is a malcontent' -- that you can't trust this person. And that is the reason that Vietnam Veterans Against the War did this unified presentation in Detriot in 1971." "They brought together their bona fides and wore their medals and showed it was more than one or two or three malcontents. It was medal-winning, honored soldiers -- veterans in a group verifying what each other said to try to convince people that these charges cannot be denied. That people are doing these things as a matter of policy." Early this morning, Gareth Jones and Paul de Bendern (Reuters) were reporting that Turkey's invasion has "wound down" at least in terms of "ground offensive". Tim Butcher (Telegraph of London) states, "Turkey has pulled out of northern Iraq after a week-long offensive against Kurdish rebels. The Turkish army claimed to have killed 240 Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) members with the loss of 27 of its own troops." Mark Bentley and Camilla Hall (Bloomberg News) note that this was Turkey's "biggest military incursion into the country in 11 years." Suna Erdem (Times of London) observes, "The announcement came a day after President Bush urged Turkey, its Nato ally, to end the incursion, but the military statement said the start and end dates had been set by general staff without any outside influence."
On the Turkish Embassy (in the US) website, bulletin points include, "This operation" -- the invasion of nothern Iraq -- "will be limited in size, scope and duration. Turkey has been among the staunchest advocates of the territorial integrity, sovereignty and national unity of Iraq. Turkish civilian and military authorities have been in contact with the relevant Iraqi and US authorities at highest levels prior to the operations." AFP reports that the Turkish military began returning to Turkey this morning while AGI states, "All the soldiers that had taken part in the attack on the Iraqi part of Kurdistan are back in Turkey." AFP also notes that the PKK states they killed 100 Turkish soldiers during the invasion, "downed a Turkish attack helicopter" and their death toll was 5. So was the "limited . . . duration" always supposed to translate as the invasion ending today? One caught by surprise is the Turkish Daily News which, in a Friday article, notes, "NATO allies Turkey and the United States failed to reach a consensus yesterday over a timetable for the withdrawal of Turkish troops" and quotes Yasar Buyukanit, Turkey's Chief of General Staff General, stating, "Short term is a relative notion. Sometimes it is a day, sometimes it is a year." Al Jazeera quotes their corespondent Mike Hanna, "The Turkish military insists that the decision was taken by the military alone but reports we're receiving from across the border in Turkey is that questions are being raised about the Turkish withdrawal coming so soon after what appeared to be mounting US pressure on the troops to pull out" and notes that a PKK spokesperson (Ahmed Davis) confirms that the Turkish military has withdrawn. [Sidebar, Naomi Klein's husband, journalist Avi Lewis, is hosting a weekly program on Al Jazeera entitled Frontline USA. Click here for a YouTube clip and here for another YouTube clip.] However, Mark Tran (Guardian of London) quotes unnamed US officials in Baghdad who caution that all Turkish troops may not be out of Iraq. Tran notes US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and others note the comments of the Bully Boy of the United States but is anyone noting yesterday's approximately $6.2 billion four-year loan to Turkey from the World Bank?
Azad Aslan writes the Kurdish Globe's editorial which opens with, "Similar to previous incursions, the recent Turkish invasion into south Kurdistan has only one major goal: to diminish and belittle the sovereignty of Kurdistan Region." Hiba Dawood (whom many know from Free Speech Radio News but Dawood is also a UPI correspondent) notes another editorial from a Kurdish paper (Al Ahali) that was written "by Faisal Abdul Hassan, an Iraqi exile in Morocco, said the Iraqi central government had no efficient response to the assault except sending a 'bashful' demand to the Turkish government to withdraw from Kurdistan." At the White House today, Gordon Johndroe worded carefully regarding the end of the invasion when he told reporters, "We've seen those reports that are just coming out. I think there's one thing that remains clear, and that is the United States, Turkey and Iraq all will continue to view the PKK as a terrorist organization that needs to be dealt with. So we will continue to have cooperation with them on dealing with that organization." NPR offers an audio report via Ivan Watson on today's Morning Edition.
Yesterday's snapshot noted Turksih entertainer Bulent Ersoy who spoke out against the invasion and she was then the subject of criticism. Pelin Turgut (Time magazine) explains, "So pervasive is the nationalist climate that Ersoy has been vilified for declaring -- on a national TV equivalent of American Ido, where she is a judge -- that if she had a son, she would not have sent him to fight this war. She is now under investigation for being 'anti-military.' Ersoy is widely popular but the response to her declaration has been bellicose." Nicholas Birch (The Scotsman) offers the quote and news. The quote differs from Reuters' version yesterday only slightly, "I am not a mother, nor ever will be, but I would not bury my child for somebody else's war." At which point, Turkey's version of Dennis Miller (Erbu Gundes) exploded, "May God give me a son so that I can send him off to our glorious army" followed by a phrase trotted out for military funerals leading Ersoy to add, "Always the same cliched phrases. Children go, bitter tears, funerals . . . And afterwards, these cliched phrases." Birch reports, "An Istanbul prosecutor promptly opened an investigation into her for alienating the people from military service, a crime punishable by up to three years in jail." The Turkish Daily News explains the criminal sentence (if found guilty) is two years but it "could be increased by one-third because the crime was committed via public medium." They also add this to her quote, "These wars are not like ones in the past. It is all decided by people sitting at tables and deciding that some boys should die. I am not a mother so I cannot relate to a mother's pain when she hears her son has died. But I am a human being." Today's Zaman reports that she has the support of European Parliament member Cem Ozdemir who states, "Bulent Ersoy is voicing the pain felt by mothers, and she is also questioning the ongoing Iraqi occupation. . . . We hope that a period of suppression is not started in Turkey that will deal a heavy blow to freedom of thought."
Meanwhile, Amit R. Paley and Joshua Partlow (Washington Post) report that puppet of the occupation Nouri al-Maliki was talking big in Baghdad and they observe: Maliki's confidence seems untethered to political reality. Predicting when his government will fall has become a parlor game in certain circles in Baghdad. And some of his pronouncements -- like one on Thursday that "sectarianism has been eliminated" -- have struck Iraqi and American officials as bordering on the delusional. Sectarian killings are still common and political reconciliation remains elusive, a fact underscored by the veto this week of a law calling for nationwide elections, one of the few major pieces of legislation approved by parliament." They go on to quote "a senior U.S. official in Baghdad" who states basically, to replace the puppet at this time would mean even more "stagnation." The puppet as metaphor for the illegal war.
Noting al-Maliki's "unity" speech, Leila Fadel (McClatchy Newspapers) observes that violence continues in Iraq and that, "One of our Shiite Iraqi staffers asked if Maliki would go to Adil, a restive Sunni neighborhood in Baghdad where Sunni insurgents still operate and Shiites know they are not welcome. Maybe he can check out Hurriyah where Sunni residents have not returned. They were run out of the neighborhood in 2006 and some men were burned alive. Maybe he can ask the more than 88,000 mostly Sunni contractors that work with the U.S. to fight Al Qaida how they feel about the reconciliation effort. Many of them are former insurgents, very few have been absorbed into the government. People complain now that many act as warlords, in each neighborhood the law is in their hands."
Turning to some of today's reported violence . . .
Hussein Kadhim (McClatchy Newspapers) reports a Baghdad bombing that left two people wounded, a Diyala Province home bombing that went off during the midst of an Iraq military raid claiming the life of 1 corpse and a Mosul roadside bombing claimed 2 lives.
Hussein Kadhim (McClatchy Newspapers) reports Judge Abid Jassim and attorney Ahmed Al-Luizi were shot dead in Mosul.
Hussein Kadhim (McClatchy Newspapers) reports that the archbishop of the Cahtholic Church in Mosul was kidnapped and 3 "of his companisons" were killed. The BBC explains, "Archbisop Paulos Faraj Rahho was seized as he left a church in the eastern al-Nour district, it added. . . . Most of Iraq's estimated 700,000 Christians are Chaldeans -- Catholics who are autonomous from Rome but recognise the Pope's authority." Catholic World News states, "Bishop Paulos Faraj Raho was seized by terrorists who attacked his car as he left the Holy Spirit cathedral in Mosul after leading the Stations of the Cross on Friday, February 29. Three companions who had been in the car with him were killed." AP reports that Pope Benedict XVI has issued an appeal for "reason and humanity".
Hussein Kadhim (McClatchy Newspapers) reports 2 corpses discovered in Baghdad, Sameea Sofi's corpse was discovered outside of Kirkuk, General Mudhir Hadi Salih and General Amir Muhammad Al-Jibouri's corpses were discovered in Diyala province (blindfolded, shot to death) and the corpse of Ahmed Khalaf was discovered in Kirkuk (he was a local council member in Hawija).
Turning to US politics. "What I learned being in and out as you correctly point out is that there are a lot of people who have a lot of questions about the government and they don't exactly know where to turn to for answers because the corporate media don't tell the people the truth," so explains Cynthia McKinney to Kimberly Wilder (On The Wilder Side) in a video produced by Terry Morrone (a typo yesterday, it is "Terry Morrone"). Cynthia McKinney is running for the Green Party presidential nomination. In a wide ranging interview, former US Congress women McKinney explains why she became a member of the Green Party:
The Democrats are the ones who failed to repeal the Patriot Act, the Democrats are the ones who continue to fund the war. The Democrats are the ones who say that the Bush tax cuts are alright even though they railed against them when they were in the minority. Now that they are in the majority and they could do something about it they fail to do it. And so I decided on my birthday that I would declare my independence from the Democratic Party. And I would declare my independence from any national leadership that was complicit in war crimes, crimes against humanity, torture and all of the rest of it. I reject and I'm happy to have joined with other people in the Green Party who reject that as well.
And in terms of rejection, some Greens are less than pleased with Ralph Nader who announced his campaign for president on NBC's Meet The Press Sunday. The Green Party notes: "Green Party leaders expressed their disappointment in Ralph Nader's decision, announced on Thursday, not to seek the 2008 Green presidential nomination." They quote the party's co-chair Phil Huckelberry declaring, "A lot of Greens have supported Mr. Nader and wanted him to win the party's nomination. There has been an active effort by many Green leaders to 'draft' Mr. Nader as a Green candidate, and his success in recent Green primaries demonstrates that he remains a very popular figure within the Green Party. There is widespread disappointment among Greens that he chose to go a different route." Here's a tip, one that Jess (rightly) pointed out two Sundays ago -- no party holds primaries with a place-holders. That is ridiculous. If you can't declare you are running by a party's primary, you get no votes. You get no one holding your place. As Jess noted two Sundays ago, that needs to change immediately so that it never happens again. There's a chance of a roundtable at Third this Sunday to address this topic.
Ralph Nader's presidential website is up and running (and allowing comments). Among the topics written of thus far are impeachment and Palestinians. He has selected a running mate, Matt Gonzalez. Gonzalez is already doing what vice presidential candidates are supposed to do: hitting hard. Writing at CounterPunch, he takes on the myth of "anti-war" Barack Obama noting that, "I'm afraid to say I'm not just uninspired: I'm downright fearful. . . . First, he opposed the war in Iraq while in the Illinois state legislature. Once he was running for US Senate though, when public opinion and support for the war was at its highest, he was quoted in the July 27, 2004 Chicago Tribune as saying, 'There's not that much difference between my position and George Bush's position at this stage. The difference, in my mind, is who's in a position to execute.' The Tribune went on to say that Obama "now believes US forces must remain to stabilize the war-ravaged nation a policy not dissimilar to the current approach of the Bush administration.' Obama's campaign says he was referring to the ongoing occupation and how best to stabilize the region. But why wouldn't he have taken the opportunity to urge withdrawal if he truly opposed the war? Was he trying to signal to conservative voters that he would subjugate his anti-war position if elected to the US Senate and perhaps support a lengthy occupation? Well, as it turns out, he's done just that." The myth of "anti-war" Barack Obama was addressed here last night so we'll instead focus on Hillary Clinton.
Hillary is running for the Democratic presidential nomination. The following statement is from Senator Clinton's office, not her campaign:
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton announced today that she has cosponsored legislation to ban the use of Blackwater and other private mercenary firms in Iraq.
"From this war's very beginning, this administration has permitted thousands of heavily-armed military contractors to march through Iraq without any law or court to rein them in or hold them accountable. These private security contractors have been reckless and have compromised our mission in Iraq. The time to show these contractors the door is long past due. We need to stop filling the coffers of contractors in Iraq, and make sure that armed personnel in Iraq are fully accountable to the U.S. government and follow the chain of command," said Senator Clinton.The legislation requires that all personnel at any U.S. diplomatic or consular mission in Iraq be provided security services only by Federal Government Personnel. It also includes a whistleblower clause to protect contract personnel who uncover contract violations, criminal actions, or human rights abuses.
As KeShawn pointed out in an e-mail today, Hillary Clinton's endorsements do not get noted on Democracy Now! -- though Goodman can repeat in headlines (two days in a row this week) the same endorsement of Barack -- among her recent endorsers is Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba. He joins a lengthy list of retired military and defense officials who have endorsed her (active military cannot make endorsements) and you can read about that at her campaign site. Hillary was in Waco, Texas today and among the issues she addressed was reducing the strain on US service members so that they will be deployed for 12 months and not the 15 month tours that have become the norm. Bully Boy could stop that now. He could have stopped it before it began. As noted yesterday, US House Rep Patrick Murphy asked General George Casey if Congress needed to pass legislation to get the tour of duty down to 12 months and keep it there but Casey felt it would 'tie up' the military's hands. Today in Waco, Hillary pledged that any US service member serving a 12 month tour of overseas "will have at least 12 months at home." She also addressed the issue of veterans' care and the need for a new GI Bill of Rights. Meanwhile, her opponet Barack Obama's homophobia is the subject of Susan UnPC's recent post (No Quarter) which notes Bambi's heebie-jeebies when he came to the Bay Area. Don't worry, Laura Flanders grants him absolution or at least provides silence from her perch as "out lesbian" for Bambi. Meanwhile Taylor Marsh (TaylorMarsh.com) notes that the Canadian government was warned by Bambi's campaign prior to Tuesday's debate not to pay attention to Bambi's NAFTA remarks, they were just words. She covers it here as well and offers a video.
From video to radio. WBAI's pledge drive is ending and Sunday The Nex Hour offers "Post-Warholian radio artists Andrew Andrew host." That's at 11:00 am to noon EST Sunday on NYC airwaves and streaming on WBAI while Monday they offer Cat Radio Cafe from 2:00 to 3:00 pm EST: "Poet Marie Howe reads from her new collection, "The Kingdom of Ordinary Time"; actor/playwright Brian Dykstra on his new one-man show on religion, "The Jesus Factor"; and actor Paul Hecht and musician Lisa Terry on "Parthenia, a Consort of Viols, Presents Hot Off the Press Concert of New Music and Poetry." Hosted by Janet Coleman and David Dozer."
iraq veterans against the war
the washington postamit r. paleyjoshua partlowleila fadelradiowbai
cat radio cafe