Monday, December 21, 2009

Cops Are Tops

We'll get rid of the dictator, rebuild your country
Make sure all your kids go to school
We'll clean up the cities, get the sewage plants running
Institute parliamentary rule
We'll bring you autonomy, senators & judges
And a shiny new blue banner
We'll bring you pride & prosperity, food in your bellies
In every home a phone, fax & scanner
After we torture our prisoners

We'll bring you decades of peace, spiritual release
Free religious expression
You can say what you want in the papers you run
We'll never force a confession
After we torture our prisoners

The oil will flow just where it should go
Across the desert and into the sea
And you'll thank your God & the CIA
That finally you are free
After we torture our prisoners

You'll all be safe with us to protect you
And keep you out of harm's way
You'll thank creation & your liberation
From the dark into a new day
After we torture our prisoners

You can all jump for joy, each girl & boy
And look boldly into the distance
You'll be so happy for all that we've done
For such invaluable assistance
After we torture our prisoners

You won't have to worry about tyrants & bullies
Now that you have sovereignty
You can hold your head high, kiss Saddam goodbye
Say hello to democracy
After we torture our prisoners

(After We Torture Our Prisoners, David Rovics)

"Keeping watch over us that evening were policemen in dapper navy-blue uniforms... [T]hese new Palestinian police officers had American gear. They are sometimes known as Dayton soldiers, after [US general Keith] Dayton... [who, beginning under Bush,] set out to overhaul the fragmented and battered Palestinian forces. His first goal was to find better people. All new police applicants were screened by the CIA, the Israeli Security Agency, the Jordanians and the Palestinian services to weed out potential criminals, Islamists and troublemakers. The new recruits were then trained in Jordan... In the northern summer of 2008, Israel finally allowed the first battalion into Jenin, the most chaotic and violent city on the West Bank and the one hardest hit in the 2002 Israeli offensive. It was a success... They do everything the police should do: they fight crime; they chase crooks; they treat people with civility. As of yet, I have found no instance of them angling for baksheesh (bribes) or protection money... Political will is not enough to combat violence and corruption. Improved policing usually takes generations. But, even though Dayton's solution for West Bank security is a temporary fix, it is still a remarkable turnaround. To get out of a swamp you must hold onto something outside it, and the Americans provided the handle... So why has this good news been kept quiet?" (New Order: Nathan Shachar discovers a West Bank success story everyone wants to keep secret, The Financial Review/Prospect, 18/12/09)

"Palestinian security agents who have been detaining and allegedly torturing supporters of the Islamist organisation Hamas in the West Bank have been working closely with the Central Intelligence Agency, new evidence suggests. Less than a year after the US President Barack Obama, signed an executive order that prohibited torture and provided for the lawful interrogation of detainees in US custody, evidence is emerging the CIA is co-operating with security agents whose continuing use of torture has been widely documented by human rights groups. There is a close relationship between the CIA and the two Palestinian agencies involved, the Preventive Security Organisation and General Intelligence Service - so close, say some Western diplomats and other officials in the region, that the American agency appears to be supervising the Palestinians' work. A senior Western official said: 'The [CIA] consider them as their property, those two Palestinian services'. A diplomatic source added that US influence over the agencies was so great they could be considered 'an advanced arm of the war on terror'." (CIA 'guides' torture of Hamas activists in West Bank, Sydney Morning Herald/Guardian, 18/12/09)

"[Palestinian Prime Minister Salim] Fayyad is a strange politician in this part of the world, seemingly not content with siphoning public assets into his relatives' bank accounts... Fayyad's competence is much resented by the old-school, pocket-stuffing, back-door dealers of the Fatah movement. But the effect he has had on Nablus is remarkable. The town's revival - and in particular the overhaul of its police force by Dayton has been little reported in the Western media. But it is a giant step forward for the people of this region and the first move towards reversing the devastating effects of the violence that derailed the peace process in 2000." (Shachar)

"A number of residents of al-Jabryat neighborhood in Jenin complained that they can no longer bear hearing the cries of prisoners being tortured in a neighboring prison that is run by the General Intelligence [Service] of Mahmoud Abbas. Local residents said that a number of residents have actually moved out of the neighborhood because they could not sleep at night hearing those cries, saying that as the prisoners were being physically tortured in the said prison, they were being psychologically tortured. 'We cannot sleep at night because of the cries of the Hamas detainees. We have been like this for the past 2 years and every day we say this problem will end tomorrow, but it seems this story is going to take a long time', said one of the residents. He also pointed out that the prices of property in the area around the General Intelligence headquarters have plummeted as a result." (Residents of al-Jabryat: we cannot sleep because of the cries of prisoners in PA [prison], The Palestinian Information Center, 14/8/09)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

SBS should have reported the Kairos Statement accurately.
I am surprised they did not. Kathy Novak is not a journalist.