Aletho News


Wall Street gorges on record bonuses

NMAWorldEdition | November 04, 2010

Wall Street bonus payouts will be $144 billion for 2010 – NYT

This amount is equal to the U.S. stimulus package approved by Congress in 2008.

November 8, 2010 Posted by | Economics, Video | 1 Comment

The Parcel Bomb Plot – Al-Qaeda’s Latest Christmas Gift to Israel

By Maidhc Ó Cathail | MEMO | 08 November 2010

While Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) may have claimed responsibility for the parcel bomb plot, it’s worth considering how this latest Yemen-linked terror scare has been a gift to their avowed enemies.

A mere two weeks before the discovery of mail bombs addressed to “two places of Jewish worship in Chicago,” Rupert Murdoch sounded prescient as he received an award from the Anti-Defamation League for his support of Israel. “The terrorists continue to target Jews across the world,” declared the media mogul in his acceptance speech. “But they have not succeeded in bringing down the Israeli government – and they have not weakened Israeli resolve.” Equating criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism, the Fox News owner smeared the growing worldwide condemnation of Israel’s rogue behaviour as an “ongoing war against the Jews.”

Benjamin Netanyahu, a frequent London house guest of Murdoch and a likely recipient of his political contributions, was quick to make hay of the foiled plot. Briefing the cabinet on his impending address to the General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America, the Israeli Prime Minister told them that it would be “held against the background of reports about the attempt to attack the Jewish community in Chicago.”

Linking the parcel bomb plot to some of the most iconic terrorist attacks of the post-9/11 era, Netanyahu said that “it does not matter if the target was a synagogue in Chicago or a railway station in Madrid, London, Mumbai or Bali.” Deftly associating his increasingly isolated government with the victims of those attacks, the Israeli Prime Minister proclaimed: “We are facing a growing wave of terrorism by extremist Islam.”

Netanyahu, never one prone to understatement, offered this analysis of the unsuccessful attempt to use desktop printers as terror weapons: “It is growing in the scope and brazen gall of its attacks, in the weapons with which it is arming itself, and in the sweeping objectives of the leaders of global terrorism.”

He then assured his colleagues that “one of the main issues” he would be addressing in New Orleans with American Jewish leaders was “the steps that the civilized and free world must take in order to stop this wave that threatens us all.”

Needless to say, those “steps” are unlikely to include an end to the 43-year occupation and colonisation of the West Bank or a lifting of the 4-year blockade of Gaza.

An American apologist for Israel’s self-appointed guardian of “the civilized and free world” took a similar line. Joel Pollak, a Republican candidate in the midterm elections, released a statement condemning the attempted terror attack, saying he would be spending the Jewish Sabbath in West Rogers Park “in solidarity with the people of the 9th congressional district who were the direct targets of Al Qaeda terror.” Sounding a lot like Netanyahu, Pollak attempted to rally his constituents by telling them, “We must not stop fighting to eradicate the twin evils of terror and hatred.”

Again, we can take it as read that the “terror and hatred” Americans are being urged to combat only applies to Israel’s enemies.

DEBKA-Net-Weekly, which describes itself as “the leading geopolitical newsletter,” has even attempted to implicate Israel’s current enemy number one, Iran. The next issue, for subscribers only, promises to reveal “how the al Qaeda air package plot fit [sic] into the selective partnership between Tehran and al Qaeda and homes in on the areas where their schemes dovetail.”

But how trustworthy is “the leading newsletter in this rarefied field”?

“Debka is prepared mostly by former Mossad operatives. A reliable stream of information,” Martin Peretz, the Islamophobic editor-in-chief of the staunchly pro-Israel New Republic assures us.

Ever since an Israeli firm let the Christmas Day crotch bomber “slip through” security at Schiphol Airport without a passport, a few influential voices with close ties to Israel have been instrumental in making Yemen “the new buzzword.”

Appearing on Fox News two days later, the No. 1 pro-Israel advocate and leader in Congress, Senator Joe Lieberman, announced: “Iraq was yesterday’s war. Afghanistan is today’s war. If we don’t act preemptively, Yemen will be tomorrow’s war.”

Within a week, Bruce Riedel, a senior fellow at the Saban Center in the Brookings Institution, had an op-ed in The Daily Beast titled “The Menace of Yemen.” Touting the botched Christmas Day plot as evidence of “the growing ambition of al Qaeda’s Yemen franchise,” Riedel called for “significant American support to defeat AQAP.”

Riedel’s employer, the Saban Center, is named after Haim Saban, the Israeli-American media mogul, who in 2002 pledged $13 million to found the Saban Center for Middle East Policy. Two years later, the billionaire admitted to the New York Times, “I’m a one-issue guy and my issue is Israel.”

“The US may be walking into a bit of a trap,” warns Gregory Johnsen, a Yemen expert and doctoral candidate at Princeton University’s Department of Near Eastern Studies.

That “trap” has been best described by Philip Giraldi. “America’s misguided war on terror,” Giraldi pointed out in a recent article, “is in fact a complete adoption of Israeli security paradigms without any regard for the actual threats that confront the US, making Israel’s many enemies also the foes of Washington.”

Israel must be very grateful indeed for this latest terror scare. If Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula did not exist, they might have to invent it.

Maidhc Ó Cathail is a widely published writer based in Japan.

November 8, 2010 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Wars for Israel | 1 Comment

Phantom Jobs

By PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS | CounterPunch | November 8, 2010

If we cannot trust what the government tells us about weapons of mass destruction, terrorist events, and the reasons for its wars and bailouts, can we trust the government’s statement last Friday that the US economy gained 151,000 payroll jobs during October?

Apparently not. After examining the government’s report, statistician John Williams ( reported that the jobs were “phantom jobs” created by “concurrent seasonal factor adjustments.” In other words, the 151,000 jobs cannot be found in the unadjusted underlying data. The jobs were the product of seasonal adjustments concocted by the BLS.

As usual, the financial press did no investigation and simply reported the number handed to the media by the government.

The relevant information, the information that you need to know, is that the level of payroll employment today is below the level of 10 years ago. A smaller number of Americans are employed right now than were employed a decade ago.

Think about what that means. We have had a decade of work force growth from youngsters reaching working age and from immigration, legal and illegal, but there are fewer jobs available to accommodate a decade of work force entrants than before the decade began.

During two years from December 2007 – December 2009, the US economy lost 8,363,000 jobs, according to the payroll jobs data. As of October 2010, payroll jobs purportedly have increased by 874,000, an insufficient amount to keep up with labor force growth. However, John Williams reports that 874,000 is an overestimate of jobs as a result of the faulty “birth-death model,” which overestimates new business start-ups during recessions and underestimates business failures. Williams says that the next benchmark revision due out next February will show a reduction in current employment by almost 600,000 jobs. This assumes, of course, that the BLS does not gimmick the benchmark revision. If Williams is correct, it is more evidence that the hyped recovery is non-existent.

Discounting the war production shutdown at the end of World War II, which was not a recession in the usual sense, Williams reports that “the current annual decline [in employment] remains the worst since the Great Depression, and should deepen further.”

In short, there is no employment data, and none in the works, unless gimmicked, that supports the recovery myth. The US rate of unemployment, if measured according to the methodology used in 1980, is 22.5%. Even the government’s broader measure of unemployment stands at 17%. The 9.6% reported rate is a concocted measure that does not include discouraged workers who have been unable to find a job after 6 months and workers who who want full time jobs but can only find part-time work.

Another fact that is seldom, if ever, reported, is that the payroll jobs data reports the number of jobs, not the number of people with jobs. Some people hold two jobs; thus, the payroll report does not give the number of employed people.

The BLS household survey measures the number of people with jobs. The same October that reported 151,000 new payroll jobs reported, according to the household survey, a loss of 330,000 jobs.

The American working class has been destroyed. The American middle class is in its final stages of destruction. Soon the bottom rungs of the rich themselves will be destroyed.

The entire way through this process the government will lie and the media will lie.

The United States of America has become the country of the Big Lie. Those who facilitate government and corporate lies are well rewarded, but anyone who tells any truth or expresses an impermissible opinion is excoriated and driven away.

But we “have freedom and democracy.” We are the virtuous, indispensable nation, the salt of the earth, the light unto the world.

Paul Craig Roberts was an editor of the Wall Street Journal and an Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury.  His latest book, HOW THE ECONOMY WAS LOST, has just been published by CounterPunch/AK Press. He can be reached at:

November 8, 2010 Posted by | Deception, Economics | 1 Comment

Fundamentalists Attack Chilean Tourist After “Suspecting” He Is Arab

By Saed Bannoura – IMEMC & Agencies – November 08, 2010

A group of Israeli fundamentalists attacked a Chilean tourist on Thursday after midnight while he was walking through a public park in Jerusalem after “suspecting” that he is an Arab.

Israeli sources reported that eight fundamentalists attacked the tourist by beating and kicking him to several parts of his body. He was later moved too Hadassah hospital in Jerusalem.

Israeli Yedioth Ahranoth reported, Monday, that Toldo Dominis, 43 years old, arrived in Israel last week in order to attend a wedding for the son of his friend who immigrated to Israel several years ago.

On Thursday night, Dominis went for a walk and a tour in Jerusalem, and as he was returning to his residence he was attacked by eight fundamentalists who initiated the attack by asking him if he was an Arab.

The paper added that the Israeli police arrested the eight youths who denied attacking the tourist, and claimed that they were drinking alcohol at the park.

The police determined that the eight youths were intoxicated when they were arrested, and sent them to a hearing at the District Court in Jerusalem on Sunday.

The Police demanded they remain under interrogation for five days, but the court rejected the demand and said that they should be released on Monday if no charges were presented against them.

See also:

Jewish Extremists Try to Kill Chilean Tourist, Mistaken for Palestinian

Palestinian News & Information Agency – 08.11.10

Jerusalem – Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronoth published a report on Monday about the attempted murder of a Chilean tourist in Jerusalem by eight Jewish extremists who mistook him for an Arab.

Jose Dominus Nolido, 43, came to Israel to celebrate the wedding of his son’s Jewish friend and visit holy sites. As he returned to his hotel, Nolido said he was accosted by youths.

“I decided to return to my room and I went through Independence Park,” Nolido explained. “Suddenly a youth attacked me. I thought he was a soldier, since he had on Israeli army pants. I tried to flee, but I ran into seven others. I fell on the ground and couldn’t get away from the blows. Then I lost consciousness. I was convinced they wanted to kill me because I looked like an Arab.”

Nolido was taken to a Jerusalem hospital, bleeding from the head and eyes. Doctors said they feared loss of vision in his right eye.

“They said I looked like an Arab,” he said. “I didn’t think that would cost me my life.”

Israeli police said that the assault had a “nationalist character” and that the Jewish attackers took him for an Arab or Palestinian. Five of the suspects were settlers from ultra-Orthodox areas of Jerusalem.

“I don’t think I’ll come back to Israel,” said Nolido. He explained that he knew the Israeli-Palestinian conflict well, but never thought he would be attacked because of his appearance.

November 8, 2010 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | Comments Off on Fundamentalists Attack Chilean Tourist After “Suspecting” He Is Arab