Daily Archive: 04/29/2012

Apr 29 2012

Rant of the Week: Stephen Colbert

The Word – United We Can’t Stand Them

Saving the planet by demonizing immigrants gives liberals and conservatives something they can do together.

Apr 29 2012

On This Day In History April 29

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

Click on images to enlarge

April 29 is the 119th day of the year (120th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 246 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1946, Hideki Tojo, wartime premier of Japan, is indicted by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East of war crimes. In September 1945, he tried to commit suicide by shooting himself but was saved by an American physician who gave him a transfusion of American blood. He was eventually hanged by the Americans in 1948 after having been found guilty of war crimes.

Capture, trial, and execution

After Japan’s unconditional surrender in 1945, U.S. General Douglas MacArthur issued orders for the arrest of the first forty alleged war criminals, including Tojo. Soon, Tojo’s home in Setagaya was besieged with newsmen and photographers. Inside, a doctor named Suzuki had marked Tojo’s chest with charcoal to indicate the location of his heart. When American military police surrounded the house on 8 September 1945, they heard a muffled shot from inside. Major Paul Kraus and a group of military police burst in, followed by George Jones, a reporter for The New York Times. Tojo had shot himself in the chest with a pistol, but despite shooting directly through the mark, the bullets missed his heart and penetrated his stomach. At 4:29, now disarmed and with blood gushing out of his chest, Tojo began to talk, and two Japanese reporters recorded his words. “I am very sorry it is taking me so long to die,” he murmured. “The Greater East Asia War was justified and righteous. I am very sorry for the nation and all the races of the Greater Asiatic powers. I wait for the righteous judgment of history. I wished to commit suicide but sometimes that fails.”

He was arrested and underwent emergency surgery in a U.S. Army hospital, where he was cared for postoperatively by Captain Roland Ladenson. After recovering from his injuries, Tojo was moved to the Sugamo Prison. While there he received a new set of dentures made by an American dentist. Secretly the phrase Remember Pearl Harbor had been drilled into the teeth in Morse Code.

He was tried by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East for war crimes and found guilty of the following crimes:

   count 1 (waging wars of aggression, and war or wars in violation of international law)

   count 27 (waging unprovoked war against the Republic of China)

   count 29 (waging aggressive war against the United States of America)

   count 31 (waging aggressive war against the British Commonwealth of Nations)

   count 32 (waging aggressive war against the Kingdom of the Netherlands)

   count 33 (waging aggressive war against the French Republic)

   count 54 (ordering, authorizing, and permitting inhumane treatment of Prisoners of War (POWs) and others)

Hideki Tojo accepted full responsibility in the end for his actions during the war. Here is a passage from his statement, which he made during his war crimes trial:

   It is natural that I should bear entire responsibility for the war in general, and, needless to say, I am prepared to do so. Consequently, now that the war has been lost, it is presumably necessary that I be judged so that the circumstances of the time can be clarified and the future peace of the world be assured. Therefore, with respect to my trial, it is my intention to speak frankly, according to my recollection, even though when the vanquished stands before the victor, who has over him the power of life and death, he may be apt to toady and flatter. I mean to pay considerable attention to this in my actions, and say to the end that what is true is true and what is false is false. To shade one’s words in flattery to the point of untruthfulness would falsify the trial and do incalculable harm to the nation, and great care must be taken to avoid this.

He was sentenced to death on 12 November 1948 and executed by hanging on 23 December 1948. In his final statements, he apologized for the atrocities committed by the Japanese military and urged the American military to show compassion toward the Japanese people, who had suffered devastating air attacks and the two atomic bombings.

Apr 29 2012

On This Day In History April 29

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

Click on images to enlarge

April 29 is the 119th day of the year (120th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 246 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1946, Hideki Tojo, wartime premier of Japan, is indicted by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East of war crimes. In September 1945, he tried to commit suicide by shooting himself but was saved by an American physician who gave him a transfusion of American blood. He was eventually hanged by the Americans in 1948 after having been found guilty of war crimes.

Capture, trial, and execution

After Japan’s unconditional surrender in 1945, U.S. General Douglas MacArthur issued orders for the arrest of the first forty alleged war criminals, including Tojo. Soon, Tojo’s home in Setagaya was besieged with newsmen and photographers. Inside, a doctor named Suzuki had marked Tojo’s chest with charcoal to indicate the location of his heart. When American military police surrounded the house on 8 September 1945, they heard a muffled shot from inside. Major Paul Kraus and a group of military police burst in, followed by George Jones, a reporter for The New York Times. Tojo had shot himself in the chest with a pistol, but despite shooting directly through the mark, the bullets missed his heart and penetrated his stomach. At 4:29, now disarmed and with blood gushing out of his chest, Tojo began to talk, and two Japanese reporters recorded his words. “I am very sorry it is taking me so long to die,” he murmured. “The Greater East Asia War was justified and righteous. I am very sorry for the nation and all the races of the Greater Asiatic powers. I wait for the righteous judgment of history. I wished to commit suicide but sometimes that fails.”

He was arrested and underwent emergency surgery in a U.S. Army hospital, where he was cared for postoperatively by Captain Roland Ladenson. After recovering from his injuries, Tojo was moved to the Sugamo Prison. While there he received a new set of dentures made by an American dentist. Secretly the phrase Remember Pearl Harbor had been drilled into the teeth in Morse Code.

He was tried by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East for war crimes and found guilty of the following crimes:

   count 1 (waging wars of aggression, and war or wars in violation of international law)

   count 27 (waging unprovoked war against the Republic of China)

   count 29 (waging aggressive war against the United States of America)

   count 31 (waging aggressive war against the British Commonwealth of Nations)

   count 32 (waging aggressive war against the Kingdom of the Netherlands)

   count 33 (waging aggressive war against the French Republic)

   count 54 (ordering, authorizing, and permitting inhumane treatment of Prisoners of War (POWs) and others)

Hideki Tojo accepted full responsibility in the end for his actions during the war. Here is a passage from his statement, which he made during his war crimes trial:

   It is natural that I should bear entire responsibility for the war in general, and, needless to say, I am prepared to do so. Consequently, now that the war has been lost, it is presumably necessary that I be judged so that the circumstances of the time can be clarified and the future peace of the world be assured. Therefore, with respect to my trial, it is my intention to speak frankly, according to my recollection, even though when the vanquished stands before the victor, who has over him the power of life and death, he may be apt to toady and flatter. I mean to pay considerable attention to this in my actions, and say to the end that what is true is true and what is false is false. To shade one’s words in flattery to the point of untruthfulness would falsify the trial and do incalculable harm to the nation, and great care must be taken to avoid this.

He was sentenced to death on 12 November 1948 and executed by hanging on 23 December 1948. In his final statements, he apologized for the atrocities committed by the Japanese military and urged the American military to show compassion toward the Japanese people, who had suffered devastating air attacks and the two atomic bombings.

Apr 29 2012

Stop CISPA: What You Need to Know

CISPA, the cyber-security bill which threatens individual privacy rights on the internet, has passed the House, ignoring a possible veto, and will go to the Senate:

On a bipartisan vote of 248-168, the Republican-controlled House backed the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (Cispa), which would encourage companies and the federal government to share information collected on the internet to prevent electronic attacks from cybercriminals, foreign governments and terrorists.

“This is the last bastion of things we need to do to protect this country,” Republican Mike Rogers, chairman of the House intelligence committee, said after more than five hours of debate. [..]

The White House, along with a coalition of liberal and conservative groups and lawmakers, strongly opposed the measure, complaining that Americans’ privacy could be violated. They argued that companies could share an employee’s personal information with the government, data that could end up in the hands of officials from the National Security Agency or the defence department. They also challenged the bill’s liability waiver for private companies that disclose information, complaining it was too broad.

“Once in government hands, this information can be used for undefined ‘national security’ purposes unrelated to cybersecurity,” a coalition that included the American Civil Liberties Union and former conservative Republican representative Bob Barr, lawmakers said on Thursday.

CISPA Critics Warn Cybersecurity Bill Will Increase Domestic Surveillance and Violate Privacy Rights

As it heads toward a House vote, critics say the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) would allow private internet companies like Google, Facebook and Microsoft to hand over troves of confidential customer records and communications to the National Security Agency, FBI and Department of Homeland Security, effectively legalizing a secret domestic surveillance program already run by the NSA. Backers say the measure is needed to help private firms crackdown on foreign entities – including the Chinese and Russian governments – committing online economic espionage. The bill has faced widespread opposition from online privacy advocates and even the Obama administration, which has threatened a veto. “CISPA … will create an exception to all existing privacy laws so that companies can share very sensitive and personal information directly with the government, including military agencies like the National Security Agency,” says Michelle Richardson, legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union. “Once the government has it, they can repurpose it and use it for a number of things, including an undefined national security use.” [includes rush transcript]

Think Progress has a summery of what we need to know  about CISPA to fight to stop its passage:

  • CISPA’s broad language will likely give the government access to anyone’s personal information with few privacy protections: CISPA allows the government access to any “information pertaining directly to a vulnerability of, or threat to, a system or network of a government or private entity.” [..]
  • It supersedes all other provisions of the law protecting privacy: As the bill is currently written, CISPA would apply “notwithstanding any other provision of law.” [..]
  • The bill completely exempts itself from the Freedom of Information Act: Citizens and journalists have access to most things the government does via the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), a key tool for increasing transparency.
  • [..]

  • CISPA gives companies blanket immunity from future lawsuits: One of the most egregious aspects of CISPA is that it gives blanket legal immunity to any company that shares its customers’ private information.
  • [..]

  • Recent revisions don’t go nearly far enough: In an attempt to specify how the government can use the information they collect, the House passed an amendment saying the data can only be used for: “1) cybersecurity; 2) investigation and prosecution of cybersecurity crimes; 3) protection of individuals from the danger of death or physical injury; 4) protection of minors from physical or psychological harm; and 5) protection of the national security of the United States.”
  • Citizens have to trust that companies like Facebook won’t share your personal information: CISPA does not force companies share private user information with the government. {..] Companies may not be legally required to turn over information, but they “may not be in a position to say no.”
  • Companies can already inform the government and each other about incoming cybersecurity threats: {..} opponents of the bill point out that “network administrators and security researchers at private firms have shared threat information with one another for decades.”
  • The internet is fighting back: The same online activists who fought hard against SOPA are now engaged in the battle over CISPA.
  • Most Republicans support CISPA, while most Democrats oppose it: Among congressmen that voted, 88 percent of Republicans supported the bill while 77 percent of Democrats opposed it.
  • President Obama threatened to veto it: Recognizing the threat to civil liberties that CISPA poses, President Obama announced this week that he “strongly opposes” the bill and has threatened to veto if it comes to his desk.
  • Join the Fight to Stop CISPA! Sign the petition:

    Save the Internet from the US

    Write your Senators

    Tell Congress: Keep My Inbox Away From the Government

    Apr 29 2012

    Punting the Pundits: Sunday Preview Edition

    Punting the Punditsis an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.

    Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”.

    The Sunday Talking Heads:

    Up with Chris Hayes: On Sunday the Chis and his panel guests will discuss the Occupy movement’s May Day plans, the relationship between the Labor movement and Democrats, and how conservative preference for austerity is working out for the UK economy. Joining Chris will be: Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) (@repjerrynadler), represents part of Manhattan and Brooklyn, serves on the Judiciary and Transportation & Infrastructure committees; Randi Weingarten (@rweingarten), president of the American Federation of Teachers; Bill Fletcher, co-founder of the Center for Labor Renewal; Marina Sitrin, member of the Occupy Wall Street Legal Working Group; and Daron Acemoglu, author of Why Nations Fail.

    The Melissa Harris-Perry Show: No information at this time.

    This Week with George Stephanopolis: this Sunday’s guest is White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan; a special “This Week” panel, in partnership with the University of Virginia’s Miller Center, tackles the critical topic, “America’s Economic Recovery: Is It Built to Last?” with panelists Carly Fiorina, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard and co-chair of Mitt Romney’s California campaign; Jennifer Granholm, former Michigan governor and host of Current TV’s “The War Room” ; Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize-winning economist and New York Times columnist; Eric Schmidt, executive chairman and former CEO of Google; David Walker, former Comptroller General and Founder and CEO of the Comeback America Initiative; and George Will, ABC News commentator and Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post columnist.

    Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer: Guests are former Mississippi Governor, former Chairman of the Republican Party Haley Barbour and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa; California Gov. Jerry Brown; and Time Magazine Contributors Graham Allison and Peter Bergen, author of Manhunt: The Ten-Year Search for Bin Laden, Washington Post columnist David Ignatius and CBS News Senior Correspondent John Miller look at the ongoing War on Terror.

    The Chris Matthews Show: This week’s guests are Helene Cooper, The New York Times White House Correspondent; David Ignatius, The Washington Post Columnist; Rick Stengel, TIME Managing Editor; and Katty Kay, BBC Washington Correspondent.

    Meet the Press with David Gregory: Gregory’s guest are Robert Gibbs from team Obama and Ed Gillespie from the Romney campaign; joining the roundtable: Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen is back to weigh in on the campaign along with Vice Chair of the House Republican Conference Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, and Republican strategist Alex Castellanos.

    State of the Union with Candy Crowley: An exclusive sit-down interview with the Speaker of the House, John Boehner; President Obama’s top counterterrorism adviser, John Brennan; Governors Brian Schweitzer (D-MT) and Bob McDonnell (R-VA); and Time magazine’s Michael Duffy and Nancy Gibbs on their new book “The Presidents Club.”

    Apr 29 2012

    Six In The Morning

    On Sunday

    Remarks by Former Official Fuel Israeli Discord on Iran

     

    By JODI RUDOREN

    The recently retired chief of Israel’s internal security agency accused the government of “misleading the public” about the likely effectiveness of an aerial strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities, ratcheting up the criticism of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak from the country’s security establishment.

    Yuval Diskin, who retired last year as the director of Shin Bet, the Israeli equivalent of the F.B.I., said at a public forum on Friday night that he had “no faith” in the ability of the current leadership to handle the Iranian nuclear threat.

    “I don’t believe in a leadership that makes decisions based on messianic feelings,” he told a gathering in Kfar Saba, a central Israeli city of 80,000. “I have observed them from up close,” he added, broadening his critique to include the handling of the Palestinian conflict as well. “I fear very much that these are not the people I’d want at the wheel.”




    Sunday’s Headlines:

    Sarkozy pursues Le Pen supporters as Socialists woo poor and disillusioned

    Slaughter of rhinos at record high

    China’s Shawshank Redemption

    Sudan arrests foreigners in disputed border region

    LA riots: How 1992 changed the police