Monday, August 29, 2005

"Political killings", fear & intimidation within the Vietnamese community in the US.
A right-wing minority, with ties to the former South Vietnamese regime, seeks to impose their war-time political agenda on a much more diverse and nuanced Vietnamese-American community of 2005.
This article was sent to me from:
Le Ly Hayslip -
Author of "When Heaven and Earth Changed Places", and
"Child of War, Woman of Peace".
Founder of the East Meets West Foundation and
Global Village Foundation
to help rebuild Vietnam.

Old Wounds

Joe Deegan,
San Diego Reader, 27 August 2005

When Escondido resident Le Ly Hayslip learned that the California State Assembly planned a May 9 award to honor her work, she got ready to celebrate. "My birthday is May 10," she says, "and I was excited and feeling sentimental."

More than a decade ago, Hayslip published When Heaven and Earth Changed Places (1989) and Child of War, Woman of Peace (1993), chronicles of her struggle to survive in Da Nang during the Vietnam War and its aftermath. Oliver Stone made the books into the 1993 film Heaven and Earth.

But in selecting Hayslip to be honored in Sacramento, the assembly's Asian Pacific Islander Caucus had its eye on two of her humanitarian organizations.

Hayslip founded the East Meets West Foundation in 1989 and the Global Village Foundation in 2000. The two nongovernmental organizations focus their efforts on improving education in Vietnam and other Asian countries. Alan Hayslip, the founder's third son, has been working at a school in Da Nang for the past three years.

Several days before going to accept her award, Hayslip received a phone call from a woman on Global Village Foundation's board of directors. San Diego's Kathy Greenwood had been making hotel reservations and other arrangements for Hayslip's visit to Sacramento. But the news in her call was that the Asian Pacific Islander Caucus had canceled the award. Hayslip would instead receive recognition from Assemblywoman Judy Chu in San Gabriel . Chu had originally nominated Hayslip for the award.

"It's too bad what happened," says Greenwood. "The legislature gives out so many fluff awards. This was going to be a substantial honor for a woman doing something to help people in this world."

Hayslip, on a working trip, speaks with me by phone from a hotel in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon). It is 1:45 a.m. in Vietnam. The cancellation of her recognition in Sacramento disappointed her greatly, Hayslip tells me. "I'm a good American citizen and am trying to make my adopted fatherland and my [original] fatherland be friends with one another," she says.

"I don't take from America but add something that everybody benefits from. It was so nice of the California legislature to want to acknowledge my hard work. Do I suddenly not deserve what I earned by working over 35 years? I cannot believe that this happened in the United States of America, which is supposed to have freedom of speech...and [that means also] freedom to receive an award because you do a good thing. Who has the right to stop it?"

Hayslip suspects California assemblyman Van Tran of instigating the block on the award, and several others confirm her suspicions.

Within the Vietnamese-American immigrant community, whose members were forced to flee their country after the Communists took over, strong feelings about the current regime often persist. Former San Diego resident Man Phan, who now lives in Sacramento, tells me that Judy Chu, the assemblywoman who nominated Hayslip for the award, admitted to him that Tran had pressured her. Before the scheduled award in Sacramento, Chu worried that Tran would embarrass Hayslip with a "surprise" personal attack on the assembly floor if the presentation went forward.

By phone from Sacramento, Tran tells me he did voice opposition to Hayslip's receiving the assembly's recognition. "But I didn't veto it. That's not my style. And anyway, I'm the junior member of the Asian Pacific Islander Caucus, which is a deliberative body."

But there are precedents for Chu's worries that Tran might have embarrassed Hayslip on the assembly floor, according to Vu-Duc Vuong, a lecturer in political science and sociology at San Jose City College.

In an e-mail response to my queries, Vu-Duc writes that Tran "went berserk [in April] when the mayor of [Ho Chi Minh City] was introduced in the Assembly." Tran opposed "the Speaker's recognition of this dignitary from Vietnam." Vu-Duc calls the mayor's visit to Sacramento nothing more than "a courtesy call from someone who represents the biggest commercial city in Vietnam, a sister city of San Francisco, and the most significant [Vietnamese] trade partner with California."

Van Tran, 41, is a 1975 refugee from Vietnam and a Republican from Garden Grove in his first assembly term. He says he is the first Vietnamese-American to serve in any legislative body in the United States. "There is a guy from Houston serving in the Texas legislature," he says, "but I beat him by about a month." Before entering the California legislature, Tran served on the Garden Grove City Council and was, for a time, the city's vice mayor.

According to a brief article in the Los Angeles Times on May 26, Tran helped write and is the co-sponsor of Senate Concurrent Resolution 17, "a resolution urging California to recognize the flag of the former South Vietnam and permit it to be flown over state property during Vietnamese-American events."

The resolution has cleared the senate and is headed for the assembly.

The Times story quotes Tran as follows: "We're not re-fighting the Vietnamese War here. [Our supporters] just want to reaffirm their identity and their political legacy as a community.... This is the flag that we cherish, that we fought for and that we believe in, as opposed to one representing a dictatorial and repressive regime."

The resolution's primary sponsor is Senator Denise Ducheny, Democrat from San Diego. Ducheny, also speaking by phone from Sacramento, tells me that during the period of welfare reform in the 1990s, she became acquainted with the San Diego Vietnamese community when she helped some of its members maintain their benefits. She assisted the Vietnamese Federation of San Diego in getting a resolution that recognized the old flag passed by the San Diego City Council.

"That was around the beginning of 2004," she says, "and I thought it was worthwhile as a way to help the community to organize politically, which they were having a hard time doing on any issue. The flag was something they were very passionate about. Then, early this year, they came to me wanting to take the flag resolution statewide."

The old flag has three red stripes on a field of yellow, and one can see it flying outside Vietnamese businesses in City Heights during such community celebrations as the festival at Tet, the lunar new year, which falls in late January or early February.

Van Tran says nothing in his and Ducheny's resolution would make it illegal to publicly fly the flag of the current regime, the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. That flag has a yellow star on a field of red. Tran calls it "the blood flag." However, he tells me, "a man named Truong Tran [no relation] flew it and placed a picture of Ho Chi Minh inside his store in the city of Westminster in 1999. People demonstrated against him for 53 straight days. I'm talking more than 20,000 people at a time."

When Vietnam's consul general in San Francisco recently protested the flag resolution, Tran wrote back (the letter is on his website) defending the action vigorously. "Most Vietnamese-Americans," he wrote, "having fled persecution from your nation, find the display of the 'yellow star on red background' flag to be insulting, offensive and culturally insensitive. You will note that support for the nationalist flag is not without precedent in America: it is proudly hoisted at the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. on Memorial Day and the Fourth of July, and has been formally recognized by over 80 local jurisdictions and eight states across this country."

But San Jose City College's Vu-Duc says that Senate Concurrent Resolution 17 is unnecessary and presumptuous.

"Not necessary," he says, "because the First Amendment allows anyone to fly any flag or symbol.... Presumptuous, because Tran and the minority who support him claim to speak for all Vietnamese-Americans in California. Simply put, they want to impose their 1975 political agenda on a much more diverse and nuanced Vietnamese-American community of 2005."

Tony Nguyen works for the American Friends Service Committee in Oakland. He gave written testimony against Senate Concurrent Resolution 17 when it came before the legislature on May 25.

The bill, he wrote, "will further silence the diverse viewpoints and political opinions within the Vietnamese community in California, especially those that are believed to be sympathetic to the current government of Vietnam.... The political reality of the [old flag] is that it has been and continues to be a symbol of terror and violence to many Vietnamese Americans in California."

During the 1980s in California, Nguyen wrote, anticommunist Vietnamese-Americans murdered a number of progressives. He calls them "political killings."

According to veteran newspaper reporter William Kleinknecht, writing for the American Journalism Review in December 1999, five Vietnamese journalists "were killed in California, Texas and Virginia between 1980 and 1991. Police believe all were slain by an anti-Communist group with ties to the former South Vietnamese Army."

Kleinknecht goes on to highlight the case of Tap Van Pham, publisher of a Vietnamese-language magazine who "dared to run an advertisement for a currency-exchange company perceived as being sympathetic to Hanoi. He was killed August 9, 1987, when an arsonist set fire to the building that housed his home and office in Garden Grove.... A group calling itself the Vietnamese Party to Exterminate the Communists and Restore the Nation sent a communiqué to police claiming responsibility for the murder, although it did not indicate whether the advertisement had prompted the attack."

On December 10, 1989, the Boston Globe Magazine ran a story about the right-wing intimidation practices among California's Vietnamese population. As part of its coverage, the Globe wrote of demonstrations against lectures Le Ly Hayslip gave in Orange County.

"People even started showing up at my home," says Hayslip. "I became so worried about my children that eventually I moved to San Francisco for a while. When the Boston Globe wrote its story, reporters spent a week with me. Their article showed that the right wing thinks anyone who disagrees with them is a communist."

"The anticommunists killed some Vietnamese-American journalists. That was a long time ago, but people in our communities remember, and they are afraid to speak up. I think only about 20 percent of Vietnamese-Californians support the right wing. They're mostly the older people and some of the young ones who've been brainwashed," she says.

"But the silent majority is intimidated," she goes on. "The war ended 30 years ago. It's time to move on. We need to practice compassion. There are so many terrible things happening in this world."

But Assemblyman Van Tran tells me that most Vietnamese-Americans are opposed to Hayslip's attitude toward the current regime. As evidence, he cites the demonstrations against her lectures years ago.

Visions of the old Vietnam hang on in the Vietnamese-American community today. The Government of Free Vietnam is an organization dedicated to, its website says, "dismantling the Communist dictatorship of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam." In January, it held its National People's Convention in Orange County, according to Tony Nguyen.

"All of this group's operations," he wrote to the assembly, "including its admitted violent activities, are carried out under the flag of the former Republic of Vietnam in direct violation of the U.S. Neutrality Act, which forbids [American] citizens from conspiring against any country with which the United States is not at war."

For further information:

Environmental Conference on

Cambodia, Laos & Viet Nam:

Le Ly Hayslip's Global Village Foundation:


60 Years of Viet Nam Independence (1945-2005)

Viet Nam celebrates the August Revolution and the Declaration of Independence.


(From an article by Huu Ngoc, Vietnamese cultural writer,
Viet Nam News, August 14, 2005)

Philippe Devillers is probably the first historian in the West to have analysed with impartiality Viet Nam’s 1945 August Revolution….

Deviller’s Histoire du Vietnam (de 1940-1952), published in 1952 at a crucial stage of the Franco-Vietnamese war, was an act of courage and lucidity. He appealed for an end to the senseless conflict:

“The French public has never been loyally and clearly informed of the nature and meaning of this struggle. One has gone from ambiguity to lies, lies that now threaten peace in Asia.”

In the author’s opinion, to understand the Vietnamese adversary, one had to understand the significance of the August Revolution, the outcome of a long liberation struggle laid out by the Viet Minh (the Viet Nam Independence League).

“The Revolution will not be an explosion, not even a rupture. It will be the final result of osmosis…the logical outcome of the Viet Minh’s infiltration into all sectors of national life….On August 6, the atomic bombing of Hiroshima sealed the fate of Japan. The decisive moment was coming. A national congress set up the Vietnamese People’s Liberation Committee. On August 19, Ho Chi Minh gave the order for the general uprising.”

For his part, Thomas Hodgkin studied the August Revolution as an “engaged” historian. “All historians must be somewhat engages,” he states in his book Vietnam – The Revolutionary Path. A Professor Emeritus and expert on African history, the British historian devoted his whole life to the fight against colonialism on a global scale.
In the 1970s, his entire family joined in manning a Vietnamese barricade. His daughter Elizabeth and his sister-in-law Mary Cowan worked as volunteers for the Foreign Languages Publishing House in Hanoi, while his wife, Dorothy Crawford, winner of a Nobel Prize in Chemistry, was active in mobilising medical aid for Viet Nam.

In 1974, during his second visit to Viet Nam, Hodgkin began an in-depth study of the liberation of the Vietnamese people. For the first time, a national revolutionary movement was able to overthrow colonial power in a country, and set up and maintain its own political and social structure.

Hodgkin attributed this success to 8 factors – the creation of revolutionary forces, the founding of the Viet Minh, contributions from minority ethnic groups, the boycott of Japan and all other imperialist countries, the impact of a widespread famine, favourable historical conditions, and Ho Chi Minh’s leadership.

Hodgkin found the root cause of victory in Viet Nam’s 3000 years of history, through which a national conscience was forged that could resist all foreign invasions.

The most comprehensive and detailed book on the August Revolution, however, is Viet Nam 1945, published 50 years after the historic event. It is written by David G. Marr, a professor at the Australian National University, and author of two other books on Viet Nam, Vietnamese Anti-colonialism: 1885-1925, and Vietnamese Tradition on Trial.

Vietnamese speaking Marr spent thirteen years writing his third book. He tapped original sources and shuttled between Australia, Viet Nam, the United States and France in search of material. Archives in Aix-en-Provence, France, were a particular mine of information. “In this book,” writes William J. Duiker, “David Marr…has weaved a rich and complex tapestry of one of the key periods in the history of modern Vietnam.”

For further reading, see these fascinating articles:

Toppling the ivory tower: how artists inspired the revolution

As Viet Nam celebrates the 60th anniversary of the 1945 August Revolution, Nguyen My Ha looks back at the artists and intellectuals who helped inspire the movement.

Capital honours author of national anthem
On September 2, Viet Nam's National Day, Ha Noi will celebrate Nguyen Van Cao, the composer of the National Anthem, by naming one of the city's most beautiful streets after him. Thanh Tam reports.

Flag designer urban myths squelched
Through devoted and persistent research, writer Son Tung proved unequivocally who designed the National Flag, enabling the State to honour him 40 years after his death. It may surprise you to learn that Viet Nam's national flag flew for the first time in the 1940 Southern Uprising against the French.

The art of making money, literally
Of the four painters who designed Viet Nam's first bank notes when the country gained independence 60 years ago, only Mai Van Hien is still alive to tell the story of how they were created.

Leadership was force behind uprising
The success of the August 1945 Revolution of Viet Nam could be attributed to, as rightly commented by President Ho Chi Minh, the wise and determined leadership of the Communist Party of Viet Nam (CPV).

Famine fed farmers' fight for freedom
Devastated by the rule of the French and Japanese, Vietnamese peasants, under Communist leadership, found that the 1944-1945 famine was the last straw, fueling their ultimately successful push for freedom.

August Revolution symbol of VN: Party leader
The August Revolution of 1945 is an excellent symbol of Viet Nam's power, spirit, tenacity and intellectual strength, said Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh.

President reviews 60 years of building State governed by law
"The Vietnamese State attaches great importance to building the people's administration and strengthening socialist legislation," said President Tran Duc Luong.


Behold, the beauties of Halong Bay....
Thumbthing's happening on the Vietnam Reunification Express. Here I am training the young generation in the missing finger tricks.....

The ceramic bird whistle-blower nose how to be a silly twit. Maybe it snot your style....

Ahhhhhh here's me, flat out on the job again.

It's a hard life, but someone has to do it....

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Greetings friends!

Welcome to this general Newsletter, with many links to important articles and websites I hope you'll find of interest.
Maybe you will not agree with all the views expressed here, but hopefully you'll find enough food for thought to chew on.

Happy reading!

3 Wheels, 2 Guys, 1 Country

Departing from Hanoi on the 1st September 2005, we are 2 Australians who will embark on an extraordinary adventure, traveling the length of Vietnam by Cyclo, completing the 1700 km journey in Ho Chi Minh City on the 30th September 2005.

This is an enormous personal challenge for us, but also a great opportunity to promote serious issues within our adopted home, Vietnam. Our names are Adam Hurley and Marty Sharples and we have lived and worked as Tour leaders in Vietnam for 5 and 3 years respectively. We have come to love this diverse and captivating county and its vibrant citizens.

Vietnam, like many developing nations faces many serious social issues. Many people still live in conditions of extreme poverty, and many children grow up without an opportunity to escape such circumstance.

One organization close to our hearts KOTO (Know One, Teach One) is making a difference. KOTO is a not-for-profit restaurant and vocational training program that is changing the lives of street and disadvantaged youth in Vietnam.

Like many grass roots organisations KOTO relies heavily on outside donors and sponsorship. It costs 33,120 USD ($44,190 AUD) to ensure 23 trainees can complete their training at KOTO. Our aim is to raise at least this amount during our ride. This will ensure 18 months vocational training for the entire class 8.
For more information on KOTO see
We will make a quality documentary of the challenges involved in riding a cyclo the 1700kms between Hanoi and Saigon. A cyclo is a traditional non-motorized form of local passenger transport still used throughout the country today.

Anyone who has traveled to Vietnam would agree that it is one of the most photogenic and aesthetically interesting places on the planet. Combine this with the industrious population and you have a great film location. We both have experience in filmmaking, and will be employing experienced filmmakers from both Vietnam and Australia to help with the process.
If your organisation or business would like to follow our progress and support this cause you can keep updated with our travels on make a contribution by completing the attached donation form or by visiting

We are seeking your support to help us reach our mission to sponsor the trainees of class 8 at KOTO. If you are interested in supporting this adventure and great cause please see attached for sponsor options and benefits.

We look forward to receiving your support and encouragement for our mission.

Yours SincerelyAdam Hurley & Marty SharplesEXTREME

The myths of Hiroshima
By Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin
The bomb was dropped, as J. Robert Oppenheimer, scientific director of the Manhattan Project, said in November 1945, on "an essentially defeated enemy." President Truman and his closest advisor, Secretary of State James Byrnes, quite plainly used it primarily to prevent the Soviets from sharing in the occupation of Japan.

The Hiroshima Cover-Up
By Amy Goodman and David Goodman
A STORY THAT the U.S. government hoped would never see the light of day finally has been published, 60 years after it was spiked by military censors. The discovery of reporter George Weller's firsthand account of conditions in post-nuclear Nagasaki sheds light on one of the great journalistic betrayals of the last century: the cover-up of the effects of the atomic bombing on Japan.
New research on Hiroshima, Nagasaki
By John Catalinotto
Why was Harry Truman’s decision to use atomic weapons against Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, 60 years ago, like George Bush’s decision to invade Iraq in 2003? They were both war crimes, of course. And they were both based on a Big Lie.
Independent World Television
From: Paul Jay,
Chair, Independent World Television

It's been over a month since IWTnews launched our new web site -- and what a month it's been! Below you'll find a roundup of recent highlights from -- including a recap of our greatest successes and surprises from our first four weeks online.
IWT has taken several important steps closer to reality. Help us keep up the momentum!
Please take a moment to forward this message to friends and family. Let them know about our movement to build the world's first non-profit, global independent news network. And don't forget to add your voice on our blog -- tell us what you think about our first month's results, and where we're headed next.


Birth of a Movement: IWT's first month online
Over 6,000 people took our survey, 3,000 joined our email community, and over 600 supporters contributed money. Read our summary of IWT's successes and surprises in our first four weeks online -- including what we've heard from you, and where we're taking the movement next.
Uncompromising journalism or just more spin?
We've received a lot of questions about whether IWTnews aims to be a "left-wing CNN." IWTnews chair Paul Jay answers this question directly, using the example of the recent attacks in London to stress the need for "uncompromising journalism," instead of "spin from the other direction."
The IWTnews community responds to the London bombings
The day of the attacks in London, we reached out with a special blog post and email from IWTnews Chair Paul Jay -- and you responded, with over two hundred poignant comments and responses to what you were seeing -- and not seeing -- in the coverage that followed the attacks. The discussion continues here:
IWT continues to receive international press coverage
From Air America and CBC Radio to major newspapers like The Guardian, Toronto's Globe and Mail, Montreal's La Presse, the MIT Technology Review and China's LifeWeek Magazine, IWT continues to make news. Our Los Angeles "Birth of a Network" video screening and party was covered by Variety and the Hollywood Reporter. You'll find it all on our PRESS page:
IWTnews Blog features the world's best journalism
From the untold story behind recent violence in Haiti, to Afghanistan's potential "Taliban revival," the IWTnews Blog is currently featuring examples of the kind of investigative reporting you'll eventually find on IWTnews.
By John Catalinotto
After two years of documenting the guilt of the U.S. and UK governments in carrying out an illegal aggression against the sovereign state of Iraq and a criminal occupation of that country, a worldwide people’s organization has met in Istanbul, Turkey, and delivered its verdict.
By Minnie Bruce Pratt
As fierce resistance to the U.S. occupation of Iraq continues, both the Bush administration and liberal Democrats continue to use the excuse of “democracy” to justify invasion, the murder of tens of thousands of Iraqis and installation of a puppet government.

GetUpFrom Jeremy & David & the GetUp team

Dear Friends,

This is a critical moment for Australia. Over the last nine years, John Howard's government has taken our country in a direction that many of us find profoundly distressing. But up until now, the damage has been limited: the opposition parties in the Senate have been able to check John Howard's worst excesses.
But all that will change.

John Howard's government is taking control of the Senate. For the first time in a generation, a government will have absolute power.

It's time for Australians to Get Up:

We already know that the government is planning changes that—- if implemented—will fundamentally change our country. This includes radical industrial relations laws that will strip workers' rights, changes in media ownership rules that will limit independent voices, and big cuts to services on university campuses through the introduction of voluntary student unionism.

At times like this, people need to take politics into their own hands. We need to show John Howard's government that it can't just do whatever it wants.

Together with our friends, we have created a website to help mobilise Australians who care about where this country is going. It's called

Now, we need your help. As we write this, John Howard is finalising his legislative agenda. Now that the other parties can't block the government's legislation, only public opposition can moderate John Howard's agenda. We know that when enough people speak out, John Howard backs down, just as he did recently on children in detention. If John Howard and his Senators know that enough Australians are watching them, we can moderate his agenda even before it arrives in parliament.

At this critical moment, John Howard and the Coalition Senators need to know that—even though the other parties can't hold them to account—we will.

Send the Coalition Senators in your state this video message from ordinary Australians telling them that, from August 9, we will be holding the Coalition government to account:

The more messages the Senators receive, the better chance we have of moderating Howard's agenda even before it arrives in parliament.
Once you've sent your message please take a minute to let all your friends know about GetUp. Together, we can build a community of people who are going to help build a more progressive Australia.

Thanks for being part of this.
—Jeremy & David & the GetUp team
Tuesday, August 9th, 2005

GI SPECIALExcellent free email newsletter about what is really happening in Iraq, and the growing war resistance within the military.
For back issues see GI Special web site at
The following that we know of have also posted issues:
..........................................................................................................That's it until next time!
Greetings friends!
July 27, 2005
Welcome to this general Newsletter.

LONDON BOMBINGSIn the aftermath of the recent London bombings, I have had several emails from friends who were there at the time and survived, one by a miracle and a matter of minutes only. Tragically, one friend was among the innocent dead.

Mike Matshusita, was a former work colleague of mine at Intrepid Travel, until very recently leading trips in Cambodia and Viet Nam, and a kind-hearted friend to all who knew him.

Nothing can undo the past, but we can honour the memory of those who died in various ways. We must strengthen our work to understand and expose the underlying causes of such desperate acts. We must work even harder to build a peaceful world that would see an end to the horrors of war and terrorism. Such horrors are a daily occurrence around the world, but when they strike at someone we know personally we realise how vulnerable we all are.

By assisting charity projects close to Mike's heart, we can continue his good works helping others in need - an honourable tribute to the life of Mike Matsushita. His family have asked that if you would like to express your sympathy, and as a memory to Mike, that you donate to community projects that Mike was supportive of, in particular to support needy children in Cambodia and Vietnam.

Intrepid Travel has established a separate account within The Intrepid Foundation for this purpose. Intrepid will pay all administration costs and match all donations on a dollar for dollar basis. Please take a look at:

Indochina Children's Fund for Mike
There is also a website set up by Mike's friends in Sydney -

From Paul Jay

....But then I received news of the attacks in London.
When I turned on my TV and heard the questions being asked -- and more importantly, not being asked -- by the major networks, it reminded me of the urgent need that drove us to start building Independent World Television in the first place.

I shared some of my thoughts on our blog :

"We live in perilous times..."
Those are the opening words of our Birth of a Network video, and today's attacks in London underscore this message.

Deliberate attacks on civilians are war crimes. All such attacks are violations of international law and basic human rights. None are justified, no matter what the circumstances.
All factors that lead to such attacks must be investigated, revealed, and debated.

To ascribe the cause of terrorist attacks like those in New York, Madrid, and perhaps London to an abstract force called "international terrorism" does not help us understand or respond.
The people behind these attacks have motives, interests, and consciousness that drive them. Whatever one makes of these reasons, to dehumanize the event, to turn people into a demonic force, does not make us safer or solve the underlying problems.

We have a right to understand the complexity of this.
The U.K. and U.S. continue an occupation of Iraq. Canada has troops in Afghanistan. Citizens have a right to know what the objectives of these policies are, and what the real consequences of these policies may be.

Among the many questions that are not fully being asked on television today: to what extent are the foreign policies of our governments contributing to making citizens a target?
Do citizens fully understand and support these policies based on an educated opinion? These are amongst the many questions IWTnews would be asking today.

In times like these, those of us involved in building IWT renew our commitment to the effort.
We hope you will join us.Please join me in the conversation that has already begun on our blog ( ) to talk about how today's events are being covered.

Most importantly, please forward this message on to a few friends, family, and co-workers and ask them to join us in this effort to build the world's first global independent television network:

Sincerely, Paul Jay,Chair, IWTnews
"The injury we do and the one we suffer are not weighed in the same scales."
- Aesop, Fables

A Viler Barbarism

By Tariq Ali
British politicians thought they could press buttons and make war in the Arab world and remain safe themselves. Now they had a reply. In the dominant culture of the West there is a deep-seated belief that the lives of Western civilians are somehow worth more than those living in other parts of the world - especially those parts being bombed and occupied by the West.

It is an insult to the dead to deny the link with Iraq
By Seumas Milne
Tony Blair put his own people at risk in the service of a foreign power. The first piece of disinformation long peddled by champions of the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan is that al-Qaida and its supporters have no demands that could possibly be met or negotiated over; that they are really motivated by a hatred of western freedoms and way of life; and that their Islamist ideology aims at global domination.

Truth Struggling

By John Pilger
Their goal is not security, but greater control.

WW editorial statement
Will the July 7 bombings in London be followed by greater opposition to imperialist war and occupation--which has already cost so many lives and so much suffering in so many countries? Or will the political forces of corporate expansion and empire building in the United States and Britain be able to utilize them to further their aggressive agenda of war and plunder? That is the question now before the progressive movement.

In aftermath of bombings
Debate over Iraq rages in Britain
Anti-war & Muslim groups call solidarity rally

By Deirdre Griswold
July 13—Two opposite reactions have emerged in Britain since the four coordinated bombings on the London transit system on July 7 that killed over 50 people.

Know who your enemy is
By Charley Reese
There are no terrorists anywhere in the world whose goal is the destruction of civilization, Western or otherwise.

Iraq: The War We Are Not Being Shown
By Arianna Huffington
It’s like a pair of blinders has been removed and I’m suddenly seeing for myself what I’ve long known to be the case: just how sanitized a version of the war the American mainstream media are delivering, and how little of even this cleaned-up coverage we get.
By John Catalinotto
The news out of Iraq was more of the same this week, and the signs from Fort Monmouth, N.J., to Sydney, Australia, from the Pentagon to Rome, were that the world's people, including those in the U.S. armed forces, are fed up with the occupation.

25,000 Iraqi civilians killed since invasion of Iraq
Four times as many died at the hands of US-led forces as from suicide bombers and other insurgents, according to a detailed study of the human cost of the conflict.

More Evidence Indicts U.S. at the World Tribunal on Iraq
New evidence on U.S. war crimes and violations of international law was presented at the concluding session of the World Tribunal on Iraq at hearings in Istanbul Sunday.

Index: Testimony From World Tribunal for Iraq
Testimony by - H.C. von Sponeck - Larry Everest - Dahr Jamail - Jim Harding - Phil Shiner
The Tribunal will consist of hearings investigating various issues related to the war on Iraq, such as the legality of the war, the role of the United Nations, war crimes and the role of the media, as well as the destruction of the cultural sites and the environment.

Iran behind gassing of Kurds, Shiite massacre:
Saddam's lawyer
"We have evidence, papers, that the Pentagon produced showing that Iraq did not possess the poison gas in question at that point in time. Iran is the one responsible for the Kurds," he said Tuesday.

Saddam Could Call CIA in His Defence

Bush Tyranny In Iraq Surpasses That Of Saddam
In a close race Bush beats Saddam.
The Evidence File

Incinerating Iraqis: the napalm cover up
By Mike Whitney
Two weeks ago the UK Independent ran an article which confirmed that the US had "lied to Britain over the use of napalm in Iraq". (06-17-05)
Since then, not one American newspaper or TV station has picked up the story even though the Pentagon has verified the claims. This is the extent to which the American "free press" is yoked to the center of power in Washington.

John Yoo: Terrorists Gone Wild
John Yoo, a “visiting scholar” at the neocon criminal organization the American Enterprise Institute, suggests “our intelligence agencies create a false terrorist organization” as a way to fight against another false terrorist organization, al-Qaeda.

American Terror
More than two years ago, we wrote here of a secret Pentagon plan to foment terrorism by sending covert agents to infiltrate terrorist groups and goad them into action -- in other words, committing acts of murder and destruction.

'Democracy Now'Interview With Seymour Hersh
Hersh's article cites unidentified former military and intelligence officials who said the administration had gone ahead with covert election activities in Iraq that "were conducted by retired CIA officers and other nongovernment personnel, and used funds that were not necessarily appropriated by Congress."

Murder in the Abstract is Still Iniquitous
By Jason Miller
Karl Rove, Bush's master propagandist whom Bush affectionately refers to as "Turd Blossom", rivals the genius of Joseph Goebbels in his ability to manipulate the masses. Preying on the average American's relative ignorance about other cultures and societies, Rove whipped the US populace into a frenzy of fear and lust for revenge after 9/11.

Judge Dread: John Roberts and Enemy Combatants
By Chris Floyd
Four days after he affirmed Bush's autocratic powers, Roberts was duly awarded with a nomination to the Supreme Court. Now he will be sitting in final judgment on this case - and any other challenges to Bush's peremptory commands. This is what is known, in the tyrant trade, as "a safe pair of hands."

Economic Injustice: America's New Leading Export
Here in America, we are living one of the biggest lies perpetrated in human history, and if our ruling plutocracy has its way, the rest of the world will one day enjoy the pleasant fiction that they live in a nation of justice and economic opportunity.

At Venezuela’s initiative
By Berta Joubert-Ceci
Fourteen Caribbean heads of state met at the end of June in the Venezuelan city of Puerto la Cruz, invited by President Hugo Chávez to ratify an energy accord during the First Energy Gathering of Caribbean Heads of State.


References in my last Newsletter to how the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour was not the "unexpected, unprovoked surprise attack" we were always told, certainly provoked some response!

All I am saying is that if the actual event was based on the deception of the American people and Congress (and indeed the whole world), in a conspiracy known to the President and his top advisors, then we should know this. And we should use this knowledge to be more wary in the future. Should we not?

So, what I am simply saying is before you make up your own mind, PLEASE READ THE BOOK:

"DAY OF DECEIT:The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbour"
By Robert B. Stinnett

(Touchstone, NY, 2001. ISBN 0-684-85339-6)

According to the book, Stinnett served in the US Navy from 1942-46, where he earned 10 battle stars and a Presidential Unit Citation. His book is based on 17 years of research and newly declassified documents. He says the attack was deliberately provoked by 8 specific covert actions, known only to the President and his very top advisors (i.e a "conspiracy"), designed to provoke the Japanese overt attack that would outrage the American public.

According to the book
, the so-called 'secret' Japanese radio codes confirming the imminent attack had already been decoded by the US military, but the Americans at Pearl Harbour were not to be told.

According to the book, Stinnett felt a sense of outrage as he uncovered the secrets that had been hidden for so long, but he also "understood the agonizing dilemna faced by President Roosevelt (which) forced him to find circuitous means to persuade an isolationist America to join in a fight for freedom."

You may also care to type in
Then Search: "Pearl Harbour"
Then click on: "Pearl Harbour - Mother of all Conspiracies"
Then go Search: "Robert B. Stinnett"

Have a look. Lots here, some of it way beyond anything I've been saying, and I'm not even sure I agree with it all on a quick reading, but I think you'll get the idea that there is at least a story here for taking seriously.

Please, if anyone can provide scholarly proof that Stinnett is wrong, let me know!

Organic Gardening Project
at Vietnam Friendship Village

A Winner in Vietnam Innovation Day Contest !

Our organic gardening project was named a winner in the Vietnam Innovation Day contest sponsored by the World Bank. The sponsoring donor is the Canada Fund, which operates under the Canadian Embassy in Hanoi. The award is US$10,000. This is a great step forward. We will be able to expand the project, have more visibility and begin to have access to the world of larger donors. At the same time, we are still dependent upon the generosity of friends which has brought us this far—especially to pay gardeners and staff. So please, friends, continue to support this project (for making tax-deductible donations in the U.S. or Australia, please see below.).....

....The goal is an ecologically and economically sustainable project including organic vegetable gardens, orchards and fish ponds. More particularly, the funded project involves filtration of effluents from septic tanks to turn waste-polluted large fish pond into a healthy pond. That and the small pond will then have the capacity to raise 1.5 to 2 tons of fish per year.

In addition, effluent from bio-gas production from pig manure (from the 30 animals raised at the village), which is now wasted by diversion to a neighboring property, will be saved in a sedimentation tank and used in compost production.

The ecological loop of gardens-fish ponds-animal husbandry is a traditional one in Vietnam and is called VAC (for the Vietnamese words meaning Garden-Pond-Animal Pen).

We have adopted this model and have added two significant criteria: (1) that all cultivation be organic; and (2) that no untreated animal or human waste be fed to fish. All over Vietnam, farmers, consumers and the environment are suffering from use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers. In the countryside, children frequently swim in fish ponds into which pathogen-filled animal or human waste has been added.

Adding these criteria requires adequate treatment of effluent, hot-composting of human and animal manure for use in agriculture, and using other food for fish. Our plan is to raise worms which will enrich our compost (after hot-composting, improve soil structure and richness and feed fish).

The usefulness of our model and its potential to influence other sites in Vietnam has brought us the support and collaboration of Dr. Nguyen Hung Long, Director of Environmental Health at the Ministry of Health.

In the near future, our bare bones website, will be developed further. Please check it occasionally for updates.

In the meantime, your help is needed more than ever. This award means more work, less ability for the project coordinator (John Berlow) to raise personal funds through teaching work, and more need to assure consistent funding for his collaborator and asssitant (Vuong Ngoc Quang).

Information for making donations

In the U.S. (tax deductible):Send donations to:

Buddhist Peace FellowshipS.E. Asia Organics ProjectP.O. Box 3470Berkeley, CA 94703
Make checks payable to Buddhist Peace Fellowship and write “S.E. Asia Organics Project” in the memo line

In Australia (tax deductible):Send donations to:

Rainforest Information CentreBox 368, Lismore 2480 NSW(02) 66213294
Make checks payable to Rainforest Information Centre and write “S.E. Asia Organics Project” in the memo line.

Friends of SEAOP mailing list
Seaop website:

From Project SafeCom:

Once again we're able to offer books, written and compiled directly as a result of Australia's harsh asylum and refugee policies and treatment.
The first publication, Another Country, is the result of a thorough collaboration by writers in the Baxter detention centre, PEN Australia, and refugee advocates right around Australia. Published last year as a special and limited, edition of the Southerly magazine, edited by author Tom Keneally and PEN Sydney Convenor Rosie Scott, Another Country is now available as an expanded edition. Another Country was first launched outside the Baxter detention centre in April this year.
The second publication, Following them Home, is a result of the work of David Corlett, who travelled to several countries, amongst them Iran Afghanistan and Pakistan, and connected with asylum seekers removed from Australia or who returned otherwise from our country and our detention centres. Following them Home is essential reading for every refugee agent, advocate or activist!
Another Country, writers in detention (eds Tom Keneally and Rosie Scott), writes Arnold Zable:
"Welcome to 'Another Country', a land out of sight, and mind, for many of us who inhabit the larger country that surrounds it. Its outposts are urban detention centres such as Melbourne's Maribyrnong, and Sydney's Villawood."
"The heart of this country, however, is located far from the cities, in state-of-the-art Baxter detention centre, remote Port Hedland on the north west coast, in distant Christmas Island, or quarantined in Nauru, out of bounds for independent eye witnesses."
"There is, however, a short cut to this 'country', a collection of writing penned within its razor-wire borders."
Full details, including our usual online ordering form:
David Corlett's "Following them Home: The fate of the returned asylum seekers":
One of the things that I found that was almost universal was that the implications of Australia’s detention policies continued to affect people’s lives as they had been returned. People spoke of ongoing sleep difficulties, continuing nightmares, headaches that were persistent. They spoke of, as a result of Australia’s asylum seeker policies, of losing their dignity, of having lost their humanity, and they also spoke of being institutionalised in Australia’s detention regime."
"There was a couple of instances in Iran of people who had been sent back with documents that put them at risk, and they were interrogated as a result of those documents. So there were different experiences of returnees, depending on where they came from, where they were returned to." (author David Corlett on ABC's 'The Law Report')
Full details, including online ordering form:
The Royal Commission petition
We're going well with the petition - this week we hope to cross the 10,000 signatures mark! If you haven't yet downloaded, printed and distributed the petition sheet, please do so: the community places where you can place one is almost endless. Suggestions on the page for the Royal Commission petition:

Jack Smit,
Project SafeCom

PO Box 364, Narrogin WA 6312
Phone 0417 090 130

The Royal Commission petition:

From Hal Muskat<>:Thanks for the newsletter. How bout a prominent link to a page put up by members of SF Vet's Speakers Alliance & Vet's For Peace. It's pages of media links and links for active duty & HS kids & military families, etc.

Excellent free email newsletter about what is really happening in Iraq, and the growing war resistance within the military.