Friday 7th of October 2022

the al-Qaeda brand .....

the al-Qaeda brand .....

‘As Americans turn increasingly against President George Bush’s calamitous war in Iraq, and revolt spreads through Republican ranks, the White House is again resorting to its tried-and-true ploy of fanning grossly inflated fears of terrorism.

The president just made two preposterous claims last week that insult the intelligence of his listeners. First, Bush insisted US forces in Iraq are fighting "the same people who staged 9/11."

Second, withdrawing US forces from Iraq, as the Democratic-controlled Congress is urging, means "surrendering Iraq to al-Qaeda."

These canards mark the latest steps in the Bush administration’s evolving efforts to mislead Americans into believing the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are all part of a global fight against al-Qaeda.

When marketers want to change the name of an existing product, they first place a new name in small type below the existing one. They gradually shrink the old name, and enlarge the new one until the original name vanishes.

That’s what’s been happening in Iraq. When the US invaded, Iraqis who resisted were initially branded "Saddam loyalists," "die-hard Ba’athists," or, in Don Rumsfeld’s colorful terminology, "dead-enders." Next, the Pentagon and US media called the Iraqi resistance, "terrorists" or "insurgents." The reason for invading Iraq, the White House insisted, was all about removing the tyrant Saddam, seizing weapons of mass destruction, defending humans rights and implanting democracy.

Then, a tiny, previously unknown Iraqi group that had nothing to do with Osama bin Laden appropriated the name, "al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia."’

Lies, More Lies & Damn Lies

from the sublime to the ridiculous …..

more from Crikey …..

The Go Bag: coming to a city near you

Guy Rundle writes:

Sydney's Lord Mayor, Clover Moore, is urging Sydneysiders to prepare a "Go Bag" -- packed with maps, running shoes, energy bars and even sticky-tape -- so they can be ready for any disaster that may strike the city. The Go Bag is part of a broader City of Sydney campaign called "Let's Get Ready Sydney" ... unveiled [yesterday] with the release of posters and 200,000 booklets advising what to do in the event of a terrorist attack or natural disaster. -- The SMH

What a great idea! A "go bag" to keep the residents of Sydney permanently focused on the idea that Mr and Mrs Patel who run the local chemist will sooner or later blow up Lucas Heights with a denture-wash bomb they found the recipe for while surfing the Intertubes.

Every city should have one. But if it's going to be stuff that is essential to survival, things people can't live without, contents may vary:

Go Bag (Sydney)

Yoga mat

KY

2 dodgy eckies

SMH Saturday property liftout ("The terrorists have destroyed Punchbowl". "How can they tell?" "It looks better")

Go Bag (Melbourne)

Foldable espresso machine

First issue of Dromos, thrilling new journal of postmodern architectural theory

Film festival program, so that survivors can act out Summer of the Naked Monkey a story of culture clash from the Burmese New Wave and other now lost classics

Winter wear (black skivvy)

Summer wear (black skivvy)

Go Bag (Adelaide)

FBI serial killer profiling manual, in case you’re sheltering with strangers in a vault or similar

A late cut semillon with a cork thank you I don't care what they say about chemical reactions if i wanted to drink from a bottle with a screw on cap I’d live in the park

Copy of Advertiser to remind you there are worse things than death.

Go Bag (Hobart)

One Go Bag per person containing:

Goggles (two pair)

Protective headgear (two)

Toothbrush (two - you got the idea)

Apple core sculpture so that Tasmanian culture will not perish from the earth

Copy of Mercury to remind you there are worse things than the Advertiser

Go Bag (Brisbane)

Carry out six pack of 4X picked up en route from nuclear explosion.

Go Bag (Canberra)

Smack

Go Bag (Perth)

A go what?

Double-crossed twice over

U.S. Says Insurgent Leader It Couldn’t Find Never Was
By MICHAEL R. GORDON
Published: July 18, 2007

BAGHDAD, July 18 — For more than a year, the leader of one the most notorious insurgent groups in Iraq was said to be a mysterious Iraqi called Abu Omar al-Baghdadi.

As the titular head of the Islamic State in Iraq, Mr. Baghdadi issued incendiary pronouncements. Despite claims by an Iraqi Interior Ministry official in May that Mr. Baghdadi had been killed, he appeared to have persevered unscathed.

On Wednesday, the chief United States military spokesman here, Brig. Gen. Kevin J. Bergner, provided a new explanation for Mr. Baghdadi’s ability to escape attack: he never existed.

General Bergner told reporters that a senior Iraqi insurgent captured this month said that the elusive Mr. Baghdadi was actually a fictional character whose declarations on audiotape were read by a man named Abu Abdullah al-Naima.

General Bergner said the ruse was devised by Abu Ayyub al-Masri, the Egyptian-born leader of the insurgent group Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia. Although the group is mostly Iraqi, much of its leadership is foreign, and Mr. Masri was reportedly trying to mask the outsiders’ dominant role.

The general’s briefing was part of an American effort to counter the psychological aspects of Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia’s campaign as well as the military ones. The news conference seemed tailored to rattle the 90 percent of the group’s adherents who are believed to be Iraqi by suggesting that they were doing the bidding of foreigners.

General Bergner said that Mr. Masri’s ploy was to invent Mr. Baghdadi, a figure whose very name was meant to establish an Iraqi pedigree, install him as the head of a front organization called the Islamic State of Iraq, and then arrange for Mr. Masri to swear allegiance to him.

Adding to the deception, he said, the deputy leader in Osama bin Laden’s group Al Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahri, publicly supported Mr. Baghdadi in a video and Internet statements.

The captured insurgent who was said to have alerted the Americans was identified as Khalid Abdul Fatah Daoud Mahmud al-Mashadani, who was said to have been detained by American forces in Mosul on July 4.

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Gus: Who's telling double porkies?