There's a lot of news to cover today, so we'll just do the headlines (clink for link-thrus) and a short excerpt of the stories we think our readers should be aware of.
Majority Of Iraqis : "Go Home America" - Stunning Poll Figures Reveal Most Iraqis Want Coalition Forces To Leave, Most Think They Will Stay Regardless
A strong majority of Iraqis want U.S.-led military forces to immediately withdraw from the country, saying their swift departure would make Iraq more secure and decrease sectarian violence, according to new polls by the State Department and independent researchers.
In Baghdad...nearly three-quarters of residents polled said they would feel safer if U.S. and other foreign forces left Iraq, with 65 percent of those asked favoring an immediate pullout...
...71 percent of Iraqis questioned want the Iraqi government to ask foreign forces to depart within a year...77 percent of those polled (believe) the United States intends (to keep) permanent military bases in the country.
Osama Bin Laden Is Alive And He's In Afghanistan, Says Pakistan's President Musharraf
President Musharraf, dismissing a French intelligence report that Osama bin Laden had died of typhoid, said yesterday that he believed the al-Qaeda leader to be hiding in the eastern Afghan province of Kunar, possibly with the help of an Afghan warlord.
“It’s not a hunch....Kunar province borders on Bajaur Agency. We know there are some pockets of al-Qaeda in Bajaur Agency. We have set a good intelligence organisation. We have moved some army elements. We did strike them twice there. We located and killed a number of them.”
Israel Claims Gaza Militants Gearing Up, Re-Arming For "Showdown With Israel"
Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip are rearming and retraining for an imminent military showdown with the Israeli army, intelligence sources disclosed yesterday.United States And North Korea Start Talking Tough As Nuclear Negotiations Fade Into Troubled History
Yuval Diskin, the head of Israel's intelligence service Shin Bet, said 19 tons of explosives had been smuggled into Gaza in the past year. Other senior Israeli officials indicated that Palestinian fighters were acquiring more effective weapons....a Hamas MP said yesterday, "This is a bunch of lies meant to justify Israel's attacks on us...The situation in Gaza is the worst ever. Israel is the one threatening Gaza and attacking Gaza."
The U.S. and North Korea traded ultimatums in New York on Tuesday, with the U.S. hinting that its primaries on Nov. 7 are the deadline for the North to come back to talks on its nuclear program, and North Korea slamming the U.S. for what it calls "vicious, hostile policies" and demanding it lifts financial sanctions against it soon.
Time is now running out to bring North Korea back to the negotiating table, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told the Wall Street Journal.
Russian Military Officers Beaten, Held On Espionage Charges In Georgia - Russia Demands Release, Warns Of Serious Consequences
Russia warned on Thursday that it would use every means available to free Russian officers who were detained in Tbilisi on suspicion of spying...
Georgian police and guards on Wednesday surrounded the regional headquarters of Russian troops in Tbilisi, and Georgia said it had arrested four Russian spies.
“We have demanded the immediate release of our citizens and we will achieve this with all the means available to us,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said...
Turkey Bombs Kurdish Insurgency Bases Inside Iraq - New Front Opens In The 'War In Iraq'
Turkey has begun attacking Kurdish insurgency bases in Iraq.Kurdish sources said the Turkish Army shelled bases of the Kurdish Workers Party over the weekend.
The sources said Turkish artillery units targeted PKK camps in the Haftanin province of northern Iraq.
Bush And Chavez On A Collision Course
Chavez's recent criticism of George W. Bush at the United Nations is only the latest in a war of words with the U.S. president. Chavez has accused the Bush administration of trying to assassinate him, a charge U.S. officials have denied. For the Bush administration, Chavez represents indeed the biggest threat in the region, although not necessarily for the reasons U.S. officials state.
Chavez's bold political initiatives have clearly put him on a collision course with the U.S., a course in which he has the overwhelming support of the Latin American masses. Unless the relationship between both countries is more carefully managed, both are to lose from this confrontation.
Taliban Blames "Outsiders" For Shocking Rise Of Suicide Bombings In Afghanistan
THE number of suicide bombings and roadside booby-trap blasts in Afghanistan has soared by 600% in nine months, triggering fears that the Taliban are copying Iraqi insurgent tactics.Demented NeoCon Writer All But Demands 'War On Iran', Despite The Horrific Consequences
The 2006 tally of attacks reached 67 yesterday, compared to 11 in 2005...
Nato forces, including Britain's 4500-strong garrison in Helmand province, are now bracing themselves for a Taliban spring campaign.
The signal (from Bush in his UN speech) is unmistakable. An aerial attack on Iran's nuclear facilities lies just beyond the horizon of diplomacy.Editor's Comment : This is the kind of blind, crazed, warpig arrogance that led the US into the 'War On Iraq'. The above columnist well knows, but fails to mention (because it's just to much to comprehend) that a retaliatory strike by Russia, or China - or Russia and China - on the US in the event of an attack on Iran is extremely likely.
The costs will be terrible:
· Economic . An attack on Iran is likely to send oil prices overnight to $100 or even to $150 a barrel. That will cause a worldwide recession...
· Military . Iran will activate its proxies in Iraq, most notably, Moqtada al-Sadr's Mahdi Army. Many Mahdi will die, but they live to die. Many Iraqis and coalition soldiers are likely to die as well.
Among the lesser military dangers, Iran might activate terrorist cells around the world...· Diplomatic. There will be massive criticism of America from around the world. Much of it is to be discounted.
The columnist mentions that "many" coalition soldiers in Iraq would die if the US attacked Iran. He purposely fails to mention that coalition soldiers in Iraq are already hostages of Iran, and they will be slaughtered in the thousands if airstrikes against Iran go ahead. President Bush knows this, and this is one of the main reasons why he will not hit Iran any time soon.