Daily archives: May 26, 2006

Enron, Bush and Uzbekistan

From Democracy Now

We turn now to the connections between President Bush and Enron. Enron founder Ken Lay and his family rank among President Bush’s biggest financial backers of his political career. The family donated about $140,000 to Bush’s political campaigns in Texas and for the White House. The president personally nicknamed Ken Lay “Kenny Boy.”

Overall Enron employees gave Bush some $600,000 in political donations. According to the Center for Public Integrity this made Enron Bush’s top career donor – a distinction the company maintained until 2004. Shortly after Bush took office in 2001, Vice President Cheney met with Enron officials while he was developing the administration’s energy policies. Our guest Greg Palast examined the connections between Enron and the Bush administration in his documentary “Bush Family Fortunes.”

Enron’s influence reached as far as Uzbekistan. In January, we interviewed the former ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray. He spoke about the relationship between President Bush and the Uzbek regime of President Karimov.

Go here for the full interview and audio and video options.

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Torture Flights: The Shocking Facts

By Gordon Thomas in Canada Free press

(To prepare this exclusive report, the award-winning intelligence expert GORDON THOMAS spoke to a range of sources in Britain, the Middle East, Eastern Europe and the United States.)

Despite the Bush administration’s insistence it neither participates nor condones ‘ “in any form” ‘ torture, the CIA continues to fly high-value al-Qaeda and Taliban suspects to interrogation centres which are beyond US jurisdiction ‘ and where torture is routine.

Investigations by the European Union and human rights activists like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have done nothing to end the secret flights that weekly cross the globe with their human cargoes destined for torture chambers.

What happens on some of the flights has been graphically described by a senior British intelligence officer who spoke under a guarantee of anonymity.

“I have personal knowledge of two flights on which the prisoners were shackled in their seats and drugged for the flight. CIA officers were on board to conduct preliminary interrogations. The heavy duty stuff is left until after landing”.


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UK government fails to investigate renditions and tries to undermine ban on torture

UK attacked over terror flights

From BBC Online

Ministers are failing to meet their legal duties to investigate claims that the CIA is flying terror suspects through the UK, say MPs and peers. Parliament’s joint committee on human rights says the government should take “active steps” to find out more details about certain flights.

The appeal comes in a damning report which also accused the UK of trying to undermine the absolute ban on torture. The government insists there is no evidence of secret prisoner flights. But allegations about the so-called “renditions” have continued.

And the committee says it should require chartered civil aircraft to provide staff and passenger lists when they use UK airports or fly through British airspace.

Such steps are not only allowed under UK law but also needed to ensure the government complies with the convention on torture, it said.

Torture challenge

A committee spokesman said the report concluded that the “government has not adequately demonstrated that it has satisfied the obligation under domestic and international human rights law to investigate credible allegations of renditions”.


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