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A Modest Roundup of (Im)pertinent Media about the Current Administration

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"Slashing Funds At Home." Scanning news reports of a White House memo on domestic spending, columnist Derrick Z. Jackson rips on Bush double-dealing in The Boston Globe (June 2). The May 19 memo directs officials to brace for cuts in 2006 -- including in programs for which Bush has just proposed election-year increases. Targets include Head Start, a homeownership program, the VA, the EPA and the WIC nutrition program. Even homeland security, Bush's top stated priority after the war on terror, would feel the knife. "The May 19 memo means that children, mothers, veterans, would-be homeowners, and ironically even those trying to protect us from the next terrorist attack will pay for Bush's disastrous Iraq policy and tax cuts [for] the wealthy," Jackson writes. www.commondreams.org/cgi-bin/print.cgi?file=/views04/0602-01.htm

 

"Ex-Baathist With Ties to the CIA and Saudi Intelligence Picked to Be New Iraqi Prime Minister." Though noting the irony that Americans couldn't get their chosen candidate selected by the Iraqi governing council they'd hand-picked, veteran journalist Alexander Cockburn tells Democracy Now! (June 1) that the man ultimately selected for the post is no prize either. Ayad Allawi's shady past involves a history of spying on fellow Iraqi students in 1960s London, and later links to British and Saudi intelligence and the CIA. He's also apparently the reliable source who fed the Brits the influential but now-discredited line that Saddam could launch WMDs in 45 minutes. The TV version of Democracy Now! airs locally 8-10 a.m. Mon.-Fri. on PCTV21. The radio version airs 8-9 a.m. Mon.-Fri. and 9-10 a.m. Mon., Tue., Thu. Fri. on WRCT 88.3 FM. www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=04/06/01/141253

 

"Al-Qaeda's Resurgence." When Osama bin-Laden is rousted out of some Pakistani cave round about, oh, Oct. 28 or so, don't applaud too loudly: Al-Qaeda doesn't need leaders like it used to. Though the U.S. and its allies have captured and killed many of the terrorist group's head men, and forced other significant operational disruptions, in less than three years since 9/11 al-Qaeda has engineered nearly twice as many attacks globally as in the five years before. "Bin Laden's strategy of drawing the United States into visible military conflict has apparently enabled al-Qaeda to portray itself as a defender of Islam against the West, bringing it far greater support worldwide," writes Terence Henry in The Atlantic Monthly (June). www.theatlantic.com

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