UK and U.S. bombing raids against Iraq increased in 2002

UK and U.S. bombing raids against Iraq increased in 2002

Monday, May 30, 2005

New information surfaced on Saturday, 28 May, that suggest that the US and UK increased air strikes against Iraq in mid 2002. The Ministry of Defence figures, provided in response to a question from Sir Menzies Campbell, the Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokesman, show that allied aircraft doubled the rate at which they were dropping bombs on Iraq beginning in May of 2002.

This apparent escalation in the number and intensity of air strikes was initiated prior to the passage of UN Resolution 1441 in November 2002 and prior to the US Congress authorizing the use of force against Iraq in October 2002. Critics claim that this was an attempt to provoke Saddam Hussein or soften his military infrastructure in preparation for a more comprehensive military campaign, and that it reaffirms their assertions that the Bush administrations was determined to go to war long before the official decision was made.

In August 2002, allied commander Tommy Franks admitted that this operation was designed to “degrade” Iraqi air defences in the same way as the air attacks that began the 1991 Gulf war, but according to legal guidance appended to the Downing Street memo (dated 23 July 2002) the allied aircraft were only “entitled to use force in self-defence where such a use of force is a necessary and proportionate response to actual or imminent attack from Iraqi ground systems”.

According to military documents shown to the Sunday Express in 2002, the Allies invaded Iraq from Turkey on August 8th, 2002, after an air strike on the 6th that took out a crucial air defence system.

Pentagon officials initially denied there had been any military action or incursion, but when challenged with specific military details a spokesman called back two hours later issuing the terse statement: “We can’t comment on current or future operations.”

The evidence seems to corroborate information in the Downing Street memo:

CDS said that military planners would brief CENTCOM on 1-2 August, Rumsfeld on 3 August and Bush on 4 August.
The two broad US options were:
(a) Generated Start. A slow build-up of 250,000 US troops, a short (72 hour) air campaign, then a move up to Baghdad from the south. Lead time of 90 days (30 days preparation plus 60 days deployment to Kuwait).
(b) Running Start. Use forces already in theatre (3 x 6,000), continuous air campaign, initiated by an Iraqi casus belli. Total lead time of 60 days with the air campaign beginning even earlier. A hazardous option.
The US saw the UK (and Kuwait) as essential, with basing in Diego Garcia and Cyprus critical for either option. Turkey and other Gulf states were also important, but less vital. The three main options for UK involvement were:
(i) Basing in Diego Garcia and Cyprus, plus three SF squadrons.
(ii) As above, with maritime and air assets in addition.
(iii) As above, plus a land contribution of up to 40,000, perhaps with a discrete role in Northern Iraq entering from Turkey, tying down two Iraqi divisions.
The Defence Secretary said that the US had already begun “spikes of activity” to put pressure on the regime. No decisions had been taken, but he thought the most likely timing in US minds for military action to begin was January, with the timeline beginning 30 days before the US Congressional elections.”

In light of these revelations, Representative John Conyers has sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfield. A draft of the letter is available here.

In Conyer’s draft, he states:

“The allegations and factual assertions made in the May 29 London Times are in many respects just as serious as those made in the earlier article. If true, these assertions indicate that not only had our nation secretly and perhaps illegally agreed to go to war by the summer of 2002, but that we had gone on to take specific and tangible military actions before asking Congress or the United Nations for authority.”
Thus, while there is considerable doubt as to whether the U.S. had authority to invade Iraq, given, among other things, the failure of the U.N. to issue a follow-up resolution to the November 8, 2002 Resolution 1441, it would seem that the act of engaging in military action via stepped up bombing raids that were not in response to an actual or imminent threat before our government asked for military authority would be even more problematic from a legal as well as a moral perspective.
As a result of these new disclosures, I would ask that you respond as promptly as possible to the following questions:
1) Did the RAF and the United States military increase the rate that they were dropping bombs in Iraq in 2002? If so, what was the extent and timing of the increase?
2) What was the justification for any such increase in the rate of bombing in Iraq at this time? Was this justification reviewed by legal authorities in the U.S.?
3) To the best of your knowledge, was there any agreement with any representative of the British government to engage in military action in Iraq before authority was sought from the Congress or the U.N.? If so, what was the nature of the agreement?
In connection with all of the above questions, please provide me with any memorandum, notes, minutes, documents, phone and other records, e-mails, computer files (including back-up records) or other material of any kind or nature concerning or relating thereto in the possession or accessible by the Department of Defense.”

Actor Jerry Orbach dead at age 69

Actor Jerry Orbach dead at age 69

Friday, December 31, 2004

New York City – Actor Jerry Orbach died in his home in Manhattan at age 69. Orbach was a staple of American cinema, stage and television, with his most recent role being in the NBC police drama “Law and Order.”

Orbach is survived by his wife of 25 years, Elaine Cancilla, and his two sons Anthony and Christopher.

Orbach was born in the tough Bronx borough of New York City in 1935 to a family of entertainers. His father Leon Orbach was an vaudeville actor and his mother Emily Orbach was a radio singer and greeting card writer.

The family moved often to keep up with travelling Vaudeville acts, but eventually settled in Waukegan Illinois where Orbach played football at the local high school. After graduation, Orbach got a summer job at the Chevy Chase Country Club in Wheeling doing odd jobs ranging from stagecraft to small acting parts in plays.

He then studied drama at the University of Illinois before transferring to Northwestern where he studied the Stanislavsky Method of drama acting. In 1955, Orbach dropped out of college and moved to New York City where he got a job as an understudy in The Threepenny Opera.

Orbach continued to work in theater, eventually earning roles in broadway musicals, but by 1961 had grown dissatisfied with being typecast as a musical actor. He tried briefly to break into film without success, and eventually returned to broadway where he earned numerous accolades for his roles in such musicals as “Guys and Dolls” and “Chicago“.

Orbach finally broke into television in the 1980s as a recurring character in shows such as the mystery-drama “Murder She Wrote” and the hit sitcom “Golden Girls“.

He earned the lead role as the title character in his own short-lived series “The Law and Harry McGraw”, a spinoff of “Murder She Wrote”. Orbach also scored key roles in a few Hollywood films, including the action thriller “F/X”, and the dance-musical hit “Dirty Dancing”, but continued to find his mainstay in television crime dramas.

In 1990, he picked up a role in the new NBC crime drama “Law and Order” as the acerbic-witted Lennie Briscoe, a role which soon become a regular job. Orbach continued in this role in addition to movie roles and occasional musical appearances until his death this last week.

Orbach was diagnosed with Prostate cancer in Spring of 2004, a fact he kept private until November when he checked into New York’s Memorial Sloan-Ketting Cancer Center for treatment. In spite of the aggressive nature of the treatment, he died on the evening of December 28.

Law center helps defend open source

Law center helps defend open source

Wednesday, February 2, 2005

Eben Moglen, Columbia University Law Professor, will head the newSoftware Freedom Law Center (SFLC). An initial 4 million dollars has been provided by Open Source Development Labs (OSDL) to fund the project.

The law center will provide free legal service for open source projects and developers. In 2004 OSDL established a separate $10 million Linux Legal Defense Fund providing legal support for Linus Torvalds, Linux kernel creator and end user companies subjected to Linux-related litigation by the SCO Group. The new law center will not be affiliated with the OSDL.

“This is about taking care of the goose that laid the golden egg and not letting wolves come in the middle of the night and steal it away,” Moglen said during a press conference. “This is a legal firm not involved so much in litigating and defending as it will be for counseling and advising and nurturing non-profits and to prevent millions of dollars in litigation.”

Moglen will serve as chairman and director-counsel of the non-profit organization. Also on board as directors are: Lawrence Lessig, law professor at Stanford Law School; Daniel Weitzner, director of the World Wide Web Consortium‘s technology and society activities; and Diane Peters, general counsel at the OSDL. Daniel Ravicher, executive director of the Public Patent Foundation, will help manage as legal director.

Moglen, one of the world.s leading experts on copyright law as applied to software, will run the new Law Center from its headquarters in New York City. The Law Center will initially have two full-time intellectual property attorneys on staff and expects to expand to four attorneys later this year. Initial clients for the Law Center include the Free Software Foundation and the Samba Project.

Other services provided by the SFLC include: asset stewardship, to avoid intellectual property claim conflict; license review and compatibility analysis; legal consulting and lawyer training.

Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Green candidate Doug Anderson, Whitby-Oshawa

Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Green candidate Doug Anderson, Whitby-Oshawa

Monday, September 24, 2007

Doug Anderson is running for the Green Party of Ontario in the Ontario provincial election, in the Whitby-Oshawa riding. Wikinews’ Nick Moreau interviewed him regarding his values, his experience, and his campaign.

Stay tuned for further interviews; every candidate from every party is eligible, and will be contacted. Expect interviews from Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party members, Ontario Greens, as well as members from the Family Coalition, Freedom, Communist, Libertarian, and Confederation of Regions parties, as well as independents.

Toll of the phosphor accident in Ukraine still rising

Toll of the phosphor accident in Ukraine still rising

Friday, July 20, 2007

Between 143 and 152 people have now been hospitalized in the wake of Monday’s train derailment near Lviv, Ukraine, and subsequent phosporous cloud. According to the Ukrainian Healthcare Ministry’s spokesperson, Igor Gerych, 43 of the injured are children, 13 are firemen and three are medical personnel. None are considered to be in mortal danger, yet some cases remain at medium risk level.

Nearly 400 people are involved with the clean-up operations. Among them are military specialists for chemical warfare. The Ukrainian Army alert state was raised to “high readiness” state on Tuesday, when the scale of the accident became clear. 27 medical brigades, 13 consultants and seven specialists are inspecting the surrounding inhabited areas.

Two of the fifteen phosphor containers that were involved in the accident have been raised and put on new transports; nine of them need more work to treat leaking and damaged areas. All containers are to be transported to a more secure location by Saturday.

The situation on the ground appears to be confusing. Political TV channel, Kanal 5, reports that the village closest to the accident, Ozhidovo, is still requesting volunteers to send medicines and water, as they do not have any. Journalists of three TV channels (Inter, Novyj Kanal, ICTV) needed medical care themselves after being in the village.

TV channel, UT-1 reports this evening that the Ukranian President, Viktor Yushchenko, has called an urgent meeting of the National Security Council.

The accident appears to be likely to become a topic of contention in the long-standing rivalry between the President and the Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych. Yesterday, the President publicly criticized the government’s work.

Politicization of the disaster is likely to be the main reason behind the extreme differences among the versions of the Ukrainian media. Some declared the accident “ended” a few hours after it occurred, while others are still making alarming reports.

On July 18, the Monitoring and Information Centre (MIC) of the European Commission reportedly offered EU assistance to the Ukrainian government. The same sources say that Ukraine has not officially requested the help. Without a formal request, EU assistance cannot begin.

On the same date, NATO Spokesman in Brussels, Mr. James Appathurai, is reported by Podrobnosti to have declared that the Alliance is following the situation, and that NATO has not received any request for help from the Ukraine, either.

Wikinews interviews Tatsuhisa Yabushita of NBGI

Wikinews interviews Tatsuhisa Yabushita of NBGI

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Many rhythm gamers are anticipating the release of Taiko no Tatsujin 11: Asian Version”, the Namco Bandai Games Inc. (NBGI) beta version of which was recently showcased at the 2008 Taipei Game Show.

In fact, several managers from amusement stores in Taiwan frequently imported large quantities of arcade games, including rhythm games. Eventually, some slot machine developers modified codes from several game consoles like the Wii, PlayStation 2 (PS2), and Sega Saturn to fulfill needs for amusement arcades, but they risked hardware failure and copyright infringement.

But before those modifications happened in Taiwan, many rhythm games just used songs from other arcade machines due to copyright issues from enrolled songs.

The upcoming game will benefit Mandarin-language gamers after its release, but it may hide some secrets behind the development of “Taiko no Tatsujin 11: Asian Version”. Wikinews reporter Rico Shen recently interviewed the producer of “Taiko no Tatsujin” Tatsuhisa Yabushita to talk about some of the background of this upcoming game and its series.

1960s Rockabilly music artist Terry Teen dies aged 70

1960s Rockabilly music artist Terry Teen dies aged 70

Monday, March 12, 2012

Terry Knutsen, who performed under the name Terry Teen during the 1960s, died on Friday evening after life support systems were removed, according to sources close to the artist. Mr. Knutsen was seriously injured on Wednesday evening, while riding his bicycle along the outskirts of Tyler, Texas, United States.

Doctors immediately classified Mr. Knutsen’s condition as ‘critical’ upon his arrival at the hospital, and further stated that he never achieved notable brain activity while hospitalized. Reports indicate that Mr. Knutsen struck a tow truck while he rode his bicycle along Highway 110 along the outskirts of Tyler, Texas on Wednesday evening. A passerby describes seeing “…a smashed up bicycle covered in…plastic bags and…a yellow raincoat…” lying at the scene of the accident.

Mr. Knutsen achieved some notoriety for his novelty song Curse of the Hearse, which was a staple for many years on Doctor Demento’s annual Halloween radio program. Before his death, Mr. Knutsen had performed for many years throughout Texas as a professional clown. He made a brief (uncredited) appearance many years ago on one episode of the hit television show In Living Color. Sources indicate he also had minor roles in various films.

A memorial service is planned for Monday evening at 7:00pm local time (CDT).

UK Wikinews Shorts: July 8, 2013

UK Wikinews Shorts: July 8, 2013

A compilation of brief news reports for Monday, July 8, 2013.

What Is Senior Peer Socialization In Provo, Ut

byAlma Abell

Senior Peer Socialization in Provo, UT assist seniors in adjusting to their new surroundings. Through this process they are encouraged to become friends with other residents. This process presents all seniors with a pleasant atmosphere and prevents them from feeling alone when their families are not present. Your loved one can participate in senior peer socialization by becoming a resident through Utah Senior Home Placement.

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How Do Home Placement Services Work?Initially, you contact the home placement services and explain the type of facility you need for your senior loved one. The representative to which you speak will ask you questions related to the type of care your senior requires. For instance, if your loved one is suffering from an advance stage of Alzheimer’s he or she needs 24-hour medical care. If your loved one is required to stick to a strict diet due to diabetes, the placement service will also need this information.

The placement service reviews all facilities based on your loved one’s needs and preferences. This service provides you with a list of facilities that match these needs. He or she will schedule a tour in which you may visit the facilities of your choice.

Local Senior Home PlacementUtah Senior Home Placement is a service that assists families in finding nursing and assisted living facilities for their loved ones. These services evaluate all facilities located within your local area of Utah to determine which is the best fit for your senior. The services are also provided for seniors who have difficulties with memory and those that require 24-hour care. To learn more about how Utah Senior Home Placement can help you, visit their website at

SummarySenior Peer Socialization in Provo UT assists senior by providing them the chance to meet other seniors living within their assisted living, nursing home, or independent living facility. This process allows them to make friends through non-stressful means and to enable them to adjust to this new living environment. It is beneficial to the seniors as they will acquire friends that they will see every day and not feel forgotten and abandoned. Through Utah Senior Home Placement, you will discover which local facilities offer this service and are most beneficial for your senior loved one.

Main Page/Sandbox4

Main Page/Sandbox4

Relief efforts continue

Over 116,000 are reported dead in the coastal areas of Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and other regions. As international aid begins to flow to the region, casualties caused by outbreaks of cholera, typhoid and related diseases, as well as by increasingly unsanitary conditions, threatens to push the death toll even higher.

‘Fockers’ set to meet another weekend title

With no new wide releases, last weekend’s films are set to rule U.S. and Canadian box office receipts once again.

Yushchenko claims victory in re-run

In Ukraine, the opposition candidate wins, and the Ukraine Elections commission rejects Prime Minister Yanukovych’s claims over election.

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  • Riots break out in France after 2018 World Cup victory

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