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Friday, May 29th

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Obama administration tries to kill e-mail case

The Obama administration, siding with former President George W. Bush, is trying to kill a lawsuit that seeks to recover what could be millions of missing White House e-mails.

Two advocacy groups suing the Executive Office of the President say that large amounts of White House e-mail documenting Bush's eight years in office may still be missing, and that the government must undertake an extensive recovery effort. They expressed disappointment that Obama's Justice Department is continuing the Bush administration's bid to get the lawsuits dismissed.

TVNL Comment: How is that for "change?"

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Why so many Holocaust films now, and for whose benefit?

The near-simultaneous appearance of all these movies is to some degree a coincidence, but it throws into relief the curious fact that early 21st-century culture, in Europe and America, on screen and in books, is intensely, perhaps morbidly preoccupied with the great political trauma of the mid-20th century.

The number of Holocaust-related memoirs, novels, documentaries and feature films in the past decade or so seems to defy quantification, and their proliferation raises some uncomfortable questions. Why are there so many? Why now? And more queasily, could there be too many?

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Julie Christie: ‘I feared Bush would unleash a wave of sadism - he did’

But even throughout these wilderness years, Julie Christie has never felt so dislocated from the world that she could ignore its horrors. Her campaigning record reads like a history of human rights abuses over the last 40 years.

This week she was back again highlighting Britain’s role in the alleged torture of a British resident held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

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Kucinich: Who Told SEC to "Stand Down" on Stanford Probe?

Chairman of the Domestic Policy Subcommittee, Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) today sent a letter to Ms. Mary Schapiro, Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requesting documents that could reveal which government agency told the SEC to "stand down" rather than take enforcement action against the Stanford Group in October 2006 as has been reported by the New York Times.

Recent media reports have indicated that the SEC was aware of improprieties at Stanford Financial Group as early as October 2006, but withheld action at the request of another government agency.

TVNL Comment: At the "request" or due to an "order?" Big difference, no matter how you look at it.

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Psoriasis Drug Raptiva Tied to Brain Infection

The FDA today issued a public health advisory about reports of a rare brain infection in people using the psoriasis drug Raptiva.

According to the FDA, there have been three confirmed and one possible case of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) in people taking Raptiva; three of those people died.

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US soldier found guilty in Iraqi killings

A military court on Friday found a US soldier guilty of premeditated murder in the killings of four blindfolded Iraqi prisoners in 2007, a US Army spokesman said.

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My Silence Cannot Be Bought

Here are statements from Beverly Eckert - the 911 widow who died in the suspicious plane crash in Buffalo NY - about why she refused a payoff from the 911 fund and why she chose to sue:

I've chosen to go to court rather than accept a payoff from the 9/11 victims compensation fund. Instead, I want to know what went so wrong with our intelligence and security systems that a band of religious fanatics was able to turn four U.S passenger jets into an enemy force, attack our cities and kill 3,000 civilians with terrifying ease. I want to know why two 110-story skyscrapers collapsed in less than two hours and why escape and rescue options were so limited.

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Justifying Israeli War Crimes

How does Israel explain the executions, the shooting of Palestinians point blank in cold blood?  How does it justify Israeli soldiers shooting Kassab Shurrab with five bullets across the chest as he came out of his car with his hands to his side, especially as one of the Palestinian hostages sitting blindfolded by the soldiers heard the commander tell the soldier in Hebrew to shoot the civilians that were driving down the road.  What about the two daughters of Khaled Abed Rabbo, Amal, age 2, and Suaad, age 7, murdered by an Israeli soldier using a semi automatic rifle before their father 's eyes as the other Israeli soldiers ate chips and chocolate?  Let us not forget about Sameer Rashid Mohammad Mohammad, a 43 year old UNRWA worker, who was separated from his family by Israeli soldiers and taken to a separate room and shot in the chest?

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Can the US military he has now inherited do anything without KBR?

If Obama wants to find out why KBR civilian workers can be found in every nook and cranny of US bases in Iraq and Afghanistan, he might be better off visiting the Rock Island Arsenal in western Illinois. It's located on the biggest island in the Mississippi River, the place where Chief Black Hawk of the Sauk nation was once born. The arsenal's modern stone buildings house the offices of the US Army Materiel Command from which KBR's multibillion dollar Logistics Civilian Augmentation Program contract (LOGCAP) have been managed for the last seven years. This is the mega-contract that has, since September 11, 2001, generated more than $25 billion for KBR to set up and manage military bases overseas (and resulted, of course, in thousands of pages of controversial news stories about the company's war profiteering).

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