By Adrian Duyzer
Published September 08, 2006
(This was first published on Ade's blog.)
According to a new poll, most Canadians believe US foreign policy is the root cause of the September 11 attacks.
Forty-three percent of Americans still believe Saddam Hussein had direct, personal involvement in 9/11, even though Bush has said Saddam had "nothing" to do with it. "One of the hardest parts of my job is to connect Iraq to the war on terror," Bush admitted, in a September 6 interview with Katie Couric at CBS News.
Another poll, this time of Britons, says that most British people think that the best defence against terrorism is a split from the US and a withdrawal from Iraq. After months of criticism, and endless ridicule for his close ties to President Bush, UK Prime Minister Tony Blair has announced his retirement.
Many Americans believe conspiracy theories that purport US involvement in the September 11 attacks, and recently declassified documents "show how in 1962, the top US military leaders planned an operation to create terror attacks against its own cities and kill US citizens" in order to build support for a war against Cuba.
Bush has now acknowledged the existence of secret CIA prisons across the globe, set up to hold top terror suspects. These suspects were subjected to interrogation methods that were "tough," said Bush, as well as "safe and lawful and necessary".
The admission of the prisons is a vindication for reporter Seymour Hersh, who broke the story in May 2005. The Bush administration denied it. Hersh has also reported that the US is planning an attack on Iran. The Bush administration denies it.
The Bush administration has proposed new laws that will make many harsh interrogation techniques that are rejected by the US military and forbidden by the Geneva Conventions accepted as normal practice, including "stress positions, sleep deprivation and extreme temperatures".
This follows the administration's drafting of revisions to the US War Crimes Act that will "eliminate the risk of prosecution for political appointees, CIA officers and former military personnel" for using or approving these techniques. The revisions are seen necessary because foreigners are using accusations of US criminal behaviour as a way to rein in American power, according to a US official.
The United States has sought and received guarantees from dozens of nations that they will never extradite Americans for prosecution by the International Criminal Court in The Hague, and has plans in place to do whatever is necessary to prevent such prosecutions from occurring, including invading The Netherlands.
Meanwhile, hearings were held on charges against two soldiers among eight who are accused of "premeditated murder, kidnapping, assault and other crimes in the April 26 death of Hashim Ibrahim Awad in Hamdaniya, Iraq". The soldiers are accused of kidnapping the 52-year-old man, "shooting him and leaving an AK-47 and shovel near his body to suggest he was an insurgent burying a roadside bomb".
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