News Clips - June 14
An amazing amount of news this week; new proposals and new agreements have sprung up. But so has our "need" to spread our presence. The military warns of another war, while 26 congressmen decry the use of drone strikes. Read on:
CNN reports this afternoon that the Pentagon has finalized plans to attack Syria and forcefully depose its leader, Bashar al-Assad, under the cover of securing weapons of mass destruction and preventing "sectarian violence" it has fomented by supporting and training the Free Syrian Army.
A newly leaked document posted on the Public Citizen website spells out the Obama administration's "trade objectives" under the Trans-Pacific Partnership, including a plan to allow transnational corporations to skirt American banking, investment, environmental and labor laws. The laws would still apply to corporations based in the United States.
Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, testified before a Senate committee Wednesday alongside Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. Both offered dire warnings about the potential impact of the automatic budget cuts, known as sequestration, which will go into effect starting next January unless Congress intervenes.
Russia has every possibility to provide a proper response to the projected deployment of a U.S. missile shield in Europe, though Moscow would like to see the U.S. plans revised, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday.
The US is planning to expand secret intelligence bases throughout Africa with a view to combating terrorism in the region, says a new report by the Washington Post. It is the latest in a US push to militarize its presence on the continent.
EFF has been monitoring governmental proposals for national identification schemes, with an eye toward evaluating the privacy implications of these new systems. In Japan, where an existing program issues unique ID numbers to citizens at the municipal level and shares information on a national network, a bill is under consideration that would create a new ID framework.
Twenty-six US Congressmen have sent a letter to President Barack Obama "demanding a legal justification from the White House for signature drone strikes."