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Latest Featured Reports | Tuesday, September 30, 2014
BREAKING: 5-4 SCOTUS Ruling Restores GOP Restrictions on Early Voting in OH
Bad news for voters. Good news for Republicans who like to win elections by trying to limit voters' ability to cast their vote...
7th Circuit Deadlock Means WI Photo ID Law Still in Place
Longtime court vacancy likely made difference in 5-5 tie; Scott Walker, GOP rejoice as 'electoral choas' reigns in 'toss up' re-election race; SCOTUS likely next stop for plaintiffs...
Too Much Voting Going On!: GA County Repubs Block Early Sunday Voting
Board of Elections votes against 'partisan' proposal to make voting more convenient, even though County already funded it...
Stewart Explodes Over GOP Climate Science Deniers on House SCIENCE Committee
And who can blame him? As White House Science Advisor forced to 'push a million pounds of idiot up a mountain'...
Federal Court Panel Denies OH Attempt to Avoid Restoration of Early Voting
State Republicans keep trying and trying to make voting harder (for some). Courts keep denying and denying their attempts...
'Green News Report' 9/25/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Climate Week Special Coverage continues: China will cut emissions; Experts say we're not doing enough; Admin makes econ case for action; PLUS: Corporate titans step up...
Previous GNRs: 9/23/14 - 9/18/14 - Archives...
GOP Values: Beating Wives, Suppressing Votes, Threatening Journalists - KPFK 'BradCast'
Latest on cases of GOP wife-beating judge Fuller; GOP voter operative Sproul; MORE...
Sproul Threatens BRAD BLOG With Legal Action After FL Confirms Our 2012 Reporting
GOP operative linked to years of registration fraud allegations sends bizarre email after yet another arrest of one of his workers...
'Green News Report' 9/23/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
GNR Special Coverage: Climate Week 2014 -- People's Climate March (largest in history), protests on Wall Street (can ya hear us now?), and a special U.N. Climate Summit...
Previous GNRs: 9/18/14 - 9/16/14 - Archives...
Report Cites Armed Walker Supporters Plotting to Target Democratic Voters in WI
'We can get our agents to watch polling location, identify the individual, and follow them to their residence'...
Resignation or Impeachment Would Be a Gift for Wife- Beating Judge Mark Fuller
2012 docs suggest domestic abuse of two wives and children by federal judge w/ lifetime appointment...
ACLU Files Emergency Petition to Halt 'Electoral Chaos' in WI
Seeks full 7th Circuit hearing after three-GOP judge ruling reinstates Photo ID law just weeks before election...
'Green News Report' 9/18/14
DiCaprio's UN climate role; Jindal plays dumb; Fracking confirmed (again) to contaminate; Black lung coal disease on rise; PLUS: Polluter front groups newest attack...
Audio of 911 Call from Judge Mark Fuller's Wife as She's Heard Repeatedly Struck
Chris Hayes plays horrifying audio from wife-beating incident by U.S. District Court Judge; ALSO: Calls for accountability from two Alabama U.S. Congresswoman...
Oil & Water: KPFK 'BradCast'
BRAD BLOG's Desi Doyen sits in for Brad with guests Matthew Heberger on water wars, David O. Atkins on CA's latest fracking fight, and Margot Paez on Mars!...
Bobby Jindal: Climate Denier, Boy Genius
LA Governor and pretend 2016 GOP Presidential hopeful pulls the old 'I know you are, but what am I?' maneuver by calling Obama Admin 'climate deniers'...
NATIONWIDE STUDY FINDS ALMOST NO VOTER FRAUD
Just 10 cases of in-person impersonation in all 50 states since 2000...
VIDEO: 'Rise of the Tea Bags'
Brad interviews American patriots...
'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
Brad's Upcoming Appearances
(All times listed as PACIFIC TIME unless noted)
Media Appearance Archives...
'Special Coverage' Archives
GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
VA GOP VOTER REG FRAUDSTER OFF HOOK
Felony charges dropped against VA Republican caught trashing voter registrations before last year's election. Did GOP AG, Prosecutor conflicts of interest play role?...

Criminal GOP Voter Registration Fraud Probe Expanding in VA
State investigators widening criminal probe of man arrested destroying registration forms, said now looking at violations of law by Nathan Sproul's RNC-hired firm...

DOJ PROBE SOUGHT AFTER VA ARREST
Arrest of RNC/Sproul man caught destroying registration forms brings official calls for wider criminal probe from compromised VA AG Cuccinelli and U.S. AG Holder...

Arrest in VA: GOP Voter Reg Scandal Widens
'RNC official' charged on 13 counts, for allegely trashing voter registration forms in a dumpster, worked for Romney consultant, 'fired' GOP operative Nathan Sproul...

ALL TOGETHER: ROVE, SPROUL, KOCHS, RNC
His Super-PAC, his voter registration (fraud) firm & their 'Americans for Prosperity' are all based out of same top RNC legal office in Virginia...

LATimes: RNC's 'Fired' Sproul Working for Repubs in 'as Many as 30 States'
So much for the RNC's 'zero tolerance' policy, as discredited Republican registration fraud operative still hiring for dozens of GOP 'Get Out The Vote' campaigns...

'Fired' Sproul Group 'Cloned', Still Working for Republicans in At Least 10 States
The other companies of Romney's GOP operative Nathan Sproul, at center of Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, still at it; Congressional Dems seek answers...

FINALLY: FOX ON GOP REG FRAUD SCANDAL
The belated and begrudging coverage by Fox' Eric Shawn includes two different video reports featuring an interview with The BRAD BLOG's Brad Friedman...

COLORADO FOLLOWS FLORIDA WITH GOP CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION
Repub Sec. of State Gessler ignores expanding GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, rants about evidence-free 'Dem Voter Fraud' at Tea Party event...

CRIMINAL PROBE LAUNCHED INTO GOP VOTER REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL IN FL
FL Dept. of Law Enforcement confirms 'enough evidence to warrant full-blown investigation'; Election officials told fraudulent forms 'may become evidence in court'...

Brad Breaks PA Photo ID & GOP Registration Fraud Scandal News on Hartmann TV
Another visit on Thom Hartmann's Big Picture with new news on several developing Election Integrity stories...

CAUGHT ON TAPE: COORDINATED NATIONWIDE GOP VOTER REG SCAM
The GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal reveals insidious nationwide registration scheme to keep Obama supporters from even registering to vote...

CRIMINAL ELECTION FRAUD COMPLAINT FILED AGAINST GOP 'FRAUD' FIRM
Scandal spreads to 11 FL counties, other states; RNC, Romney try to contain damage, split from GOP operative...

RICK SCOTT GETS ROLLED IN GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL
Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) sends blistering letter to Gov. Rick Scott (R) demanding bi-partisan reg fraud probe in FL; Slams 'shocking and hypocritical' silence, lack of action...

VIDEO: Brad Breaks GOP Reg Fraud Scandal on Hartmann TV
Breaking coverage as the RNC fires their Romney-tied voter registration firm, Strategic Allied Consulting...

RNC FIRES NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION FIRM FOR FRAUD
After FL & NC GOP fire Romney-tied group, RNC does same; Dead people found reg'd as new voters; RNC paid firm over $3m over 2 months in 5 battleground states...

EXCLUSIVE: Intvw w/ FL Official Who First Discovered GOP Reg Fraud
After fraudulent registration forms from Romney-tied GOP firm found in Palm Beach, Election Supe says state's 'fraud'-obsessed top election official failed to return call...

GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD FOUND IN FL
State GOP fires Romney-tied registration firm after fraudulent forms found in Palm Beach; Firm hired 'at request of RNC' in FL, NC, VA, NV & CO...
The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


Quote: 'Quack quack quack quack quack'
'They had a coup d'etat after 9/11'...
By Alan Breslauer on 11/29/2006 2:01pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer


Gore Vidal was typically funny and outspoken during an appearance yesterday on Late Night on PBS with Tavis Smiley. This clip (5:08) includes Vidal's views on Bush and Iraq as well as the following descriptive quote:

But because of our crazy little President. 'I'm war-time President, I'm war-time President.' You know, quack quack quack quack quack. I mean, this is a loon. Any fool can see that he is looney.
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By Brad Friedman on 11/27/2006 2:46pm PT  

As we all know, nothing actually exists or is true or has happened until the corporate mainstream media says it exists or is true or has happened. So it's nice to know that what American citizens have by-and-large known all by themselves for some time actually exists and is true and has happened: "MSNBC Now Characterizing Situation in Iraq as Civil War".

To cover their asses, MSNBC is running a poll (results as of now seen below)...

Geez, other than 86% of us, we would have never known. Thank god for the CMSM.

What next? "MSNBC Characterizes Oxygen as Good for Americans"? "Daytime Seen as Brighter than Nighttime"? "American Electoral System Broken"?

(Cynical much today, Brad?)

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Computer Scientists Warn in New Report That U.S. Military and Overseas Ballots Now Vulnerable to Loss of Privacy, Identify Theft, Hackers, Tampering by Both American and Foreign Governments
System Never Publicly Tested or Used Even in a Primary Election to be Used for First Time in Nov. 7th Midterm Election!
By Brad Friedman on 10/25/2006 1:56pm PT  


"We believe that overseas voters deserve at least as much protection when they vote as when they purchase a book from Amazon...Our service people should not be voting on a system that creates risks of identity theft, hacking, and vote tampering and which requires voters to relinquish their right to a secret ballot."
-- From an Oct. 25, 2006 report by independent computer scientists and security experts on the Dept. of Defense's new overseas military voting system.

Last month we reported on the Defense Department's newly announced scheme to allow military and overseas ballots to be cast via the Internet. It was pointed out, among other concerns, that in many cases troop and overseas citizen votes would be subject to conversion from unsecured email voting into faxed documents by a private company who, in turn, would then forward the vote to the appropriate county jurisdiction.

The San Jose Mercury News quoted experts at the time who charged the system was "ripe for fraud" as military voters would apparently not be warned that their ballots might be seen by others and transferred into faxes, etc. by "a private contractor whose top executives have made political contributions to Republican Party organizations."

Underscoring those initial reports today, a group of independent computer scientists and E-Voting experts including David Jefferson of Livermore National Laboratories, Avi Rubin of Johns Hopkins, David Wagner of UC Berkeley, and Barbara Simons, a former researcher for IBM, have released an alarming short paper warning of "significant risks" found in the newly announced plan from the DoD's "Federal Voting Assistance Program" (FVAP).

The group had been members of a scientific peer review panel for a previous DoD Military and Overseas Internet voting scheme in 2004. At the time, they found the plan featured "a large number of security risks and vulnerabilities, including denial of service attacks, insider attacks, viral attacks on voters' PCs." That experimental program was subsequently cancelled after the findings.

But now, in September of this year --- just over one month ago --- the DoD announced and implemented their new scheme for military and overseas citizen voting via the Internet, to be used this November 7th without any public testing or peer review whatsoever.

According to today's report, the new DoD voting scheme --- known as the "Interim Voting Assistance System" (IVAS) --- has been put in place without any "publicly available external security examination" and has "never been used in a public election before (not even in a primary)."

The scientists say that security concerns about the new, untested system include loss of privacy and identify theft for the military and overseas voters and, even more troubling, they found the system to be vulnerable to hackers and tampering by governments both foreign and domestic.

The six page report is now available here [PDF].

From the report's troubling introduction:

None of these security concerns is original; all were raised in a DoD internal review, discussed below.

IVAS was announced to the public only last month (September), and has been designed and built only over the last several months, an extremely short time for a system of this complexity and importance. The current system has never been used in a public election before (not even in a primary), and has not been subject to any publicly available external security examination. The technical specifications have not been made publicly available.

In an email received by The BRAD BLOG this morning, Simons summarizes the report's three main findings, characterized as "serious concerns about the security issues posed by this new system."

Her succint, yet alarming, email is posted in full below....

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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The Story of One Iraqi Doctor
By Alan Breslauer on 10/19/2006 2:38pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

Through the eyes of Dr. Jamal Taha-Enad, an Iraqi trauma surgeon that Nightline has been following around Iraq for two years, this video provides a remarkable glimpse into life in Baghdad. Powerful and heart-wrenching, the video is also notable for evidencing the graphic violence of war --- something almost unheard of in today's mainstream press.

After the segment is a partial interview of President Bush by George Stephanopoulos that also aired on last night's program.


-- Streaming Flash version...

UPDATE: Video pulled from Blip.tv and my account was shut down. I could not find video on Nightline site either. Please post a link if anyone comes by the video elsewhere. Thanks. (Alan Breslauer)

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...And on FOX 'News' of All Places!!!
By Brad Friedman on 10/1/2006 9:38pm PT  

Holy shit...They may even be losing Fox "News"!...

Welcome back to Planet Earth, Shep!

(Hat-tip Joy Williams!)

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By Brad Friedman on 10/1/2006 8:05am PT  

From Mercury News Thursday (Sorry, been running behind for some reason)...

Just weeks before the November election, the Pentagon is struggling to fix its system for handling the votes of soldiers overseas.

Yet experts in computer security and election technology say the Pentagon's current attempt to keep those ballots from being rejected in large numbers, as they have been in past elections, has created a system that is ripe for fraud.

During the next six weeks, thousands of service members are expected to fax or e-mail ballots over international communications networks that are susceptible to interception and tampering, putting those votes at risk.

"I can't for the life of me figure out how the Defense Department decided this is the right thing to do," said Doug Jones, an associate professor of computer science at the University of Iowa.

And here's more...

[V]otes sent to the Pentagon will be forwarded to a private contractor whose top executives have made political contributions to Republican Party organizations.

See the full story, for more...it gets even worse.

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By Chris Floyd on 9/12/2006 5:30am PT  

Guest blogged by Chris Floyd. Originally posted at Empire Burlesque, September 10, 2006.

Let us pause on this day of solemn remembrance and take stock of what our noble Leader has done in the world with the vast storehouse of "political capital" he received from the "new Pearl Harbor" that his noble captains Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Libby (and brother Jeb) once openly called for – in September 2000 – in a document published by their noble organization of selfless zealots for global altruism, The Project for a New American Century. Now, on this solemn occasion, as the noble Leader himself takes to the airwaves to remind us of his nobility in those dark days after the attack that his noble captains had so presciently yearned for, let us assay just one small gleaning of the great and noble crop of freedom the Leader has harvested with the seeds from what he has often called the "opportunity" provided by the murder of almost 3,000 American citizens and nationals from many other countries.

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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Our 'Top Diplomat' Uses A Faulty Analogy To Make A Faulty Case
So what else is new?
By Winter Patriot on 8/9/2006 4:57pm PT  

Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

As reported here last Friday, General John Abizaid, the top U.S. military commander in the Middle East, sent shock-waves through the administration and the press when he admitted to Congress on Thursday that "Iraq could move toward civil war".

This nearly frozen blogger filled in a few of the missing details, explaining that there is already a civil war in Iraq, and that it is happening largely because the Pentagon has been so busy setting up death squads there. The Iraqi death squads are modeled after the death squads set up in El Salvador in the early 1980s, in what has been described --- I am not kidding --- as our "democratization" of that unfortunate Central American country. And now Iraq is unfortunate enough to be the newest victim of our so-called "democratization".

The administration is not about to admit that creating a Civil War in Iraq was part of the plan, nor will it admit that it never had any intention of winning a war in Iraq. But actions speak louder than words, and now it has become abundantly clear that their goal all along was to become embroiled in a long and difficult war there. In case you hadn't noticed, this is exactly what has happened.

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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The new camp sits on land Sheehan now owns, so the legal difficulties she had last year are 'history'
Lone Star Iconoclast again provides coverage
By Winter Patriot on 8/8/2006 7:27pm PT  

Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

Cindy Sheehan has once again established herself as an anti-war presence in Crawford, Texas. She has a new campsite near the palatial estate that "president" Bush calls his "ranch", and she is inviting people to join her.

Our friend Leon Smith of the The Lone Star Iconoclast has more. Here's a sample:

Camp Casey III: It’s All About Peace

Sheehan explained Sunday that during their rallies last Easter, "We had about 300 people and it (Camp Casey II) wasn’t big enough and since they (the McLennan County Commissioners’ Court) passed the ordinances that we can’t camp at Camp Casey I, we needed to either rent abigger property or buy something. We were having trouble finding something for rent so I decided to buy something. When we don’t need Camp Casey III (located on the outskirts of Crawford) anymore and when the troops are home and after we use it as a peace camp I’m going to donate the property to the town of Crawford to use as a park. We’re going to build a playground and put in some picnic benches and we’re going to name it the Specialist Casey Sheehan Memorial Peace Park."

When asked whether local residents were resentful about the way the property was purchased, through a third party, Sheehan said, "A lot of people have a third party buy land for them. I could have hired a lawyer, but it would have cost me more. I think they should be more resentful to a president that lied to the American public and lied to the world.

"I think Camp Casey III will be safer than where we were before, and we won’t be in the way as much as we were before. We are good neighbors. We were good neighbors out there. If they can’t put up with our presence for a few weeks, when our soldiers and the people of Iraq are suffering constantly because of what our other neighbor George Bush did, then I think they need to learn to relax a little bit and learn to live with us because, I promise you, I love Crawford and we will be good neighbors."

Leon is promising more coverage and we will try to keep you posted.

All the plans have been changing so fast! This recently-published interview is already way out of date, but still worth a read:

Return to Camp Casey: An Interview with Cindy Sheehan

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It's Nothing Less Than Treason If It's True...
... and by all accounts it appears to be true!
By Winter Patriot on 8/4/2006 2:00pm PT  

Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

USA Today has the "latest":
U.S. commander expresses fear about possible civil war in Iraq

The top U.S. military commander in the Middle East told Congress on Thursday that "Iraq could move toward civil war" if the raging sectarian violence in Baghdad is not stopped.

Much as I hate to disagree with the top U.S. military commander in the Middle East, I have to question this assertion. Waddaya mean: "move toward civil war"? How many civilians have to get blown to bloody smithereens every day to qualify this mess as a civil war? How many death squads have to roam the country simultaneously before we can all just can the sleazy rhetoric and admit that the Iraqi Civil War is here now?

And as the Washington Post reported recently, some of our guys are starting to get the impression that they are simply 'Waiting to Get Blown Up'.

The commanders in Baghdad and the Pentagon are "looking at the big picture all the time, but for us, we don't see no big picture, it's just always another bomb out here," said Spec. Joshua Steffey, 24, of Asheville, N.C. The company's commanding officer, Capt. Douglas A. DiCenzo of Plymouth, N.H., and his gunner, Spec. Robert E. Blair of Ocala, Fla., were killed by a roadside bomb in May.

Steffey said he wished "somebody would explain to us, 'Hey, this is what we're working for.' " With a stream of expletives, he said he could not care less "if Iraq's free" or "if they're a democracy."
...
"My personal opinion, I don't speak for the rest of anybody, I just speak for me personally, I think civil war is going to happen regardless," Steffey responded. "Maybe this country needs it: One side has to win. Be it Sunni, be it Shiite, one side has to win. It's apparent, these people have made it obvious they can't live in unity."

Did you ever wonder why they can't live in unity now even though they could live in relative peace before the Americans came to destroy their country?

Did you ever wonder why American soldiers in Iraq are considering the possibility that maybe the country "needs" a civil war?...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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Report cites 'Treaty Violations', 'Hubris', and 'Willful Disregard For International And Domestic Law' ... and even at that, it just scratches the surface!
WAKE UP, AMERICA! Your shame is world-wide.
By Winter Patriot on 8/4/2006 6:01am PT  

Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

From Larisa Alexandrovna of RAW STORY:

UN report a 'moral indictment' of US

The United Nations Human Rights Committee has released its final report after a series of hearings in Geneva last week, which RAW STORY has learned amounts to a moral indictment of US treaty violations, as well as what some attendees and delegates described as US hubris, willful disregard for international and domestic law, and contempt for the Committee itself.

Anybody surprised? I didn't think so.

I can't quote the whole article but I can encourage you to read it!

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By David Edwards on 6/6/2006 11:44am PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards of Veredictum.com


Video in Streaming Flash format...
Video in Windows Media format...

In Iraq, the month of May saw the largest number of Iraqi civilian deaths since the war began 3 years ago. The Baghdad morgue reported over 1400 dead in May. Over 400 of the dead Iraqis could not be identified. Some journalists, like veteran reporter Robert Fisk, claim that the officials are under-reporting the actual number of deaths. In addition, many more bodies can never be counted because explosions and road side bombs often leave little evidence of human remains.

What's clear is that the violence in Iraq is increasing at a pivotal time for the fledgling Iraqi government. Even the shell-shocked Iraqis are stunned by the new level of violence. For example, over a two day period, 18 severed heads wrapped in plastic have been discovered. The likely cause are the escalating sectarian revenge killings.

In this video, an Iraqi woman cries,

Where is the government?

Where is Bush who occupied our country?

Why did they kill us?

ADDENDUM FROM BRAD: Good timing for David Edward's post here. I was about to do one of my own, pointing out this report that 6,000 Iraqi corpses have been discovered in the last 5 months. Given Iraq's population of appx. 25 million, compared with the US's population of 300 million. The equivalent of 6000 deaths in Iraq over the past five months would be some 72,000 in America. If we had 72,000 murders via "sectarian violence" in America in just five months, would that be considered a civil war? Or would we criticize the media for not reporting all the "good news" in our country?

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Haditha is 'as bad or worse than My Lai' Massacre in Vietnam
By David Edwards on 5/30/2006 11:37am PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards of Veredictum.com


Video in Streaming Flash format...
Video in Windows Media format...

Pennsylvania Congressman John Murtha appeared on CNN America Morning where he expressed outraged at the military's handling of the massacre of innocent Iraqis by Marines in Haditha, Iraq. It's been over 6 months since the incident occurred, yet the investigation is still not complete. The Pentagon refused to drop their cover story until Time Magazine published an article in February of this year. If it were not for that article, the military would have never publicly recognized the atrocities in Haditha.

Murtha said that, even now, the Military was trying to spin the report by telling the press that the incident happened during a combat situation. According to Murtha:

I think is just as bad if not worse than the My Lai massacre [during the Vietnam conflict]. In My Lai... they were out in the field and they killed civilians and they used the excuse that they looked like they were enemy. Here [in Haditha], there were no shots fired. There was no enemy action at all. A taxi drives up, they kill everybody in the taxi and then they go into the homes and pull the people out.

The stories keep getting worse and worse. Then they try to cover it up by saying they were killed by an IED to confuse the message. They're still trying to confuse the message.
...
Today, I was talking to Charlie Johnson, ABC News, and he says "the military says this, the military says that." Look, this happened 6 months ago, this happened Nov. 19th. They knew the day after what had happened. They keep spinning it to make it look like it was something that happened during [combat] action.

CNN's Pentagon official ass-kisser correspondent reviewed the timeline of events originally compiled by Time Magazine. After a roadside bomb killed one soldier, the Marines killed four teenagers in a taxi. The taxi driver was also killed. In the first house, Marines killed 7 people, including women and children. In the next house, 8 were killed, including 6 women. The third house was spared. In the fourth house, however, 4 were killed.

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Exclusive Audio Passages from 'Chasing Ghosts' as Read by the Author, Paul Rieckhoff
By Brad Friedman on 5/29/2006 1:08pm PT  

Paul Rieckhoff, Executive Director of Iraq & Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA, formerly OpTruth) sends The BRAD BLOG a few exclusive passages, as read by the author, from his new book Chasing Ghosts --- documenting his extraordinary experiences in Iraq.

Paul was kind enough to send to us a copy of the book recently which we hope to be able to read in full some time this summer, if the gods ever lend us a few quiet hours.

The title of the first chapter alone, however --- "George Bush Had Better Be Fucking Right" --- should highly recommend this book to anyone.

Here's Paul reading a few passages from the book, which we're honored to run on Memorial Day, as just part of our thanks to those American troops fighting on our behalf...whether many of them like it or not. We particularly appreciate those like Reickhoff, and all of the tremendous folks at IAVA, who have had the courage to speak out about where this Administration and this Congress is letting them down and where they are abysmally failing to adequately support our troops.

Our thanks to Paul for all of the above. Please enjoy the audio clip, and please consider buying the book. The Chasting Ghosts website is right here...

-- Audio in MP3 Format...

ADDENDUM... Rieckhoff recently appeared as a guest on Steven Colbert's show, just days after Colbert's infamous appearance at the White House Correspondent's Dinner. He talked about the book, and otherwise held up under Colbert's "nailing" as well as I've ever seen anybody. Check out the video of Rieckhoff's appearance on Colbert if you didn't catch it when it aired.

UPDATE: Broken links in this item now corrected. Sorry about that!

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Karen Meredith Remembers Her Son, Kenneth Michael Ballard, KIA in Iraq on May 30, 2004...
By Brad Friedman on 5/29/2006 10:58am PT  

We first met Karen Meredith in Crawford, Texas last Summer where she was one of many Gold Star family members standing with Cindy Sheehan who'd also lost her only son in Iraq. We interviewed Karen live [mp3] from Camp Casey on The BRAD SHOW about her son, Kenneth Michael Ballard, and her courageous stand against this war. We continue to both wear and cherish the duplicate dog tag of Ken's that she gave us while we were there, and think of both of them often.

On September 9, 2005, nearly a year and a half after she learned of the death of Ken in Najaf, the Army informed her that her son's death was an accident. They had known for a year, but failed to tell her. We blogged about that here.

What follows, is a letter Karen shared with us, as written to mark the occasion of yet another Memorial Day spent without her son. We're pleased to share it with you on yet another Memorial Day as our troops continue to fight and die by the thousands in this continuing, senseless war...

An Open Letter to Members of Congress and the Senate

On Memorial Day, we raise our flags; we want to show our patriotism. We have a holiday from work and we have BBQ's with our friends and families. For some, it is a day to save some money at the mall- 15% off- Memorial Day sale! When we celebrate those events, we ignore the origins of Memorial Day. Memorial Day is the day that we, as a country pay our respects and remember those soldiers who were killed or who died in service to America. For politicians it is a day to participate in civic activities and to visit cemeteries. Politicians articulate our sorrow as a nation.

I want to tell you about one soldier that will be remembered this Memorial Day. 1Lt Kenneth Michael Ballard of Mountain View, California was 26 years old when he was killed in a fierce battle in Najaf, Iraq on 5.30.04. His gravestone at Arlington National Cemetery is plain. That headstone in Section 60, Site 8006 tells when he was born and when he died. It describes his valor and heroism with his medals, his 3 Bronze Stars, 2 with valor and his Purple Heart.

But you need to know more than that about Ken. You need to know this because you sent my only child to his untimely death. You are keeping our members of the military in harm's way in Iraq and you have the power to bring them home and to stop this senseless killing...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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