Friday, September 30, 2011

Llano Del Rio: Socialism failed in California

Part 1: The Rise of Llano

Llano Del Rio ruins as of late 2009
Llano Del Rio (officially organized as The Llano Del Rio Company of Nevada) was a commune (or "colony") located in what is now Llano, California east of Palmdale in the Antelope Valley, Los Angeles County. The charter was issued October 15, 1915 by progressive/socialist political candidate Job Harriman, after he had failed his bid to become the mayor of Los Angeles. The Llano Del Rio Colony settled in the southern edge of the Mojave Desert along Highway 138 near what is now 165th Street East, in the alluvial plain that spread out to the north from the San Gabriel Mountains. The colony took advantage of water from Big Rock Creek, an intermittent stream that flowed from the San Gabriel Mountains. Several structures were constructed using local granite boulders and lumber, including a hotel, meeting house, and water storage tank. There was also a small open aqueduct made of granite cobbles and cement. The remnants of the built features are still visible at the site, which has been abandoned for decades.

During 1918, the colony was abandoned. Llano Del Rio turned out to be too far from other settlements to develop a sustaining economy, and the water supply from Big Rock Creek proved to be unreliable. Some of the settlers (60 families) relocated to form New Llano, Louisiana.

Llano Del Rio, which was organized under the Llano Del Rio Company was a corporate-run socialist Utopian society initiated by Job Harriman after he failed as a politician. He believed that the success of socialism depended not only on politics, but also on the realization of socialist principles. Harriman did not attempt to reform all of society, but rather, he believed that by creating a functioning socialist community within the larger society of capitalism, the larger society would gradually convert to socialism. Although Llano filed for bankruptcy during 1918, from the time of its official formation in 1914 until 1917 the colony experienced extreme economic and political growth. By 1917, the population was over nine hundred members. In just over three years, the colonists of Llano were able to form a school system, create high producing farms, start numerous clubs and sports teams, and build many industries.

Job Harriman a lawyer and politician initiated Llano del Rio. He was the Socialist Labor Party candidate for governor of the state of California. However, after having little success as a Labor Party candidate, Harriman began to align himself with the more mainstream labor movement. During 1900, he became the vice-presidential candidate to Eugene Debs. While campaigning with Debs, Harriman, though still loyal to socialist principles, began to believe that for the Socialist Party to gain success it needed to replace its political base with an economic one. Socialism would eventually transform capitalism from within. Harriman also believed that for socialism to be successful it needed to be implemented economically as well as politically: “‘It became apparent to me that a people would never abandon their means of livelihood, good or bad, capitalistic or otherwise, until other methods were developed which would promise advantages at least as good as those by which they were living.’”

Llano del Rio was planned by Alice Constance Austin and is her most recognized project. She was hired by Job Harriman, with the intention to build a cooperative community. She designed a circular city plan which included administrative buildings, restaurants, churches, schools, markets, etc. The houses had a "feminist" design and included plans for a kitchenless house, communal daycare areas, built-in furniture and heated tile floors; all of which would serve in reducing the amount of domestic work done by women.

Admission requirements
Applicants for membership were required to be idealistic, industrious, and sober. To ensure standards were met, applicants needed three references, written ideally by a local union president or secretary. Questions testing an applicant’s dedication to socialism, such as, “Will solving the economic problem ultimately lead to solving the social problem?”, were also part of the entrance procedure. Additionally, only Caucasians were admitted. An article in The Western Comrade attempted to explain this admittance discrimination, “The rejection of these applications are [sic] not due to race prejudice but because it is not deemed expedient to mix the races in these communities”. In general, the California Socialist Party of that time was racially exclusive.

Continued in Part 2: The Fall of Llano

Information courtesy of Wikipedia. Photo is the property of "Binksternet" and is used via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

Federal Republic of Germany's National Day

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State

East German Volkspolizei (People's
Police) wait for the official opening of
the Brandernerg Gate, 22 DEC 1989
On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I am delighted to congratulate the people of Germany as you celebrate the anniversary of German reunification this October 3. Just over 20 years ago, Germany’s reunification was not a foregone conclusion. Today, the story of Germany inspires countries around the world. You eradicated old prejudices and borders and came together as a nation. Over the last 20 years, Germany has committed to building a strong, peaceful country and you have influenced countless others to do the same. Today, you are a foundation for the European Union and NATO. In almost every corner of the globe, from the Middle East, to Asia, to South America, Germany stands as a powerful force for democracy and human rights.
Re-enactment of the V-J Day
Times Square photo by a
German couple, 12:01 AM on
Reunification night, Cologne.

I hope this anniversary is a time for every German to reflect on how far your country has come. You should be proud of the example you have set. I send my deepest congratulations and look forward to strengthening our cooperation even more as we work to build a more peaceful and prosperous world.

Note: The free and prosperous Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) absorbed the socialist German Democratic Republic (East Germany) failed state on October 3, 1990, bringing instant job opportunities, wealth, and a higher standard of living to the beleagured citizens of the USSR's puppet state.

The Volkspolizei photo is in the public domain. Kissing photo by Gary Mark Smith, used via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.  Both were obtained from Wikimedia Commons.

Panetta: DIA ‘Quiet Heroes’ Mark 50th Anniversary

By Cheryl Pellerin
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Sept. 29, 2011 – Every day the quiet heroes of the Defense Intelligence Agency collect, distill and distribute information that helps America’s warriors defeat its enemies, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta said today.

The secretary joined DIA Director Army Lt. Gen. Ronald L. Burgess Jr., Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, and more than 500 distinguished guests at a ceremony here celebrating the agency’s 50th anniversary.

During the ceremony, defense officials from Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom presented Burgess with gifts, and a tribute was made to fallen DIA colleagues.

“In commemorating this milestone,” Panetta said, “we all pay tribute to DIA’s half-century of extraordinary work defending our nation against a multitude of threats, a multitude of challenges, from the height of the Cold War to the post-9/11 conflicts.”

A lot has changed in the last 50 years, the secretary added, “but one thing that remains the same is that we cannot accomplish our military objectives -- it’s a fundamental principle -- … without good intelligence. The two have to work together if we’re going to achieve the ultimate victory.”

The DIA’s vital work makes the U.S. military vastly more effective and lethal, Panetta said, and America a stronger and more secure nation.

“As we take this moment to reflect on the last 50 years,” Burgess told the audience, “it is important to consider the decisions made by our nation’s leaders at a very different time and place, and how those decisions and deliberations influence our world today.”

A US Navy plane flying over a Soviet
ship carrying IL-28s
In the summer of 1961, he said, during deliberations over the creation of DIA, the Joint Chiefs of Staff wrote in a report to then Defense Secretary Robert McNamara that “‘national intelligence and military intelligence are indivisible in practice.’”

Burgess added, “This important statement remains as clear, urgent, and relevant on our 50th anniversary.”

Seven former DIA directors also attended, including Clapper, who led the agency from 1992 to 1995.

“We ought to give a thought to just how fortunate we are to have not one, but two secretaries of defense in succession who both served as directors of the Central Intelligence Agency,” Clapper said, “and who obviously understand, support and care about intelligence.”

Panetta said his own DIA connection began in the mid-1960s when he was an Army intelligence officer and one of his first assignments was to the DIA office in Washington.

“Since then,” he said, “I’ve always had a great respect for the work of DIA, which has become a central part of the military and intelligence community’s efforts around the world.”

DIA was born in an era when the nation faced down a single adversary, and the potential consequences of conflict with the Soviet Union were so profound that it was critical to have the most accurate, prompt information “to prevent what we all knew would be global calamity,” Panetta said.

Less than a year later, he added, DIA faced its first great test when the Cuban missile crisis brought the world to the brink of a world war.

“I remember all of those scenes from that moment. The iconic photos of the surface-to-air missiles arranged across a Cuban airfield that provided direct evidence of the threat to our homeland,” he said.

“Those images,” the secretary added, “… shot by a U-2 reconnaissance plane, were done on flight paths determined by DIA analysis.”

Months after the crisis, Panetta said, President John F. Kennedy called on John Hughes, special assistant to the DIA director, to deliver a nationally televised briefing to reassure the nation that the Soviet missiles had been withdrawn.

“It was a moment that defined the DIA as a vital vehicle for keeping America safe,” he said. “And that sentiment is as true today as it was 50 years ago.”

Another defining moment for the United States and for the DIA was Sept. 11, 2001, Panetta said.

In the decade since the terrorist attacks, the secretary said, DIA has emerged stronger, better integrated and more integral to the fight against America’s terrorist enemies, and a driving force behind the comprehensive military-intelligence collaboration under way to defeat al-Qaida.

“We have come together as one to integrate the efforts among the DIA, DOD, CIA and all of the intelligence communities in the executive branch to become part of one great accomplishment of the post-9/11 era,” Panetta said, adding that the entire world saw the results of this teamwork with the operation that took down Osama bin Laden.

“Whether forward deployed overseas to support the war-fighting effort or from desks here in the Washington area, the men and women of the DIA stand more than ever at the center of our military’s efforts worldwide,” the secretary said.

In Iraq and Afghanistan, Panetta added, DIA has provided essential tools and intelligence for battling insurgencies and locating high-value targets.

“All the while,” he said, “DIA has remained vigilant, never taking its eye off the emerging threats we face -– monitoring North Korea’s and Iran’s nuclear ambitions, and looking at foreign military capabilities in space and cyberspace.”

This new era for DIA and the rest of the intelligence community builds on the proud traditions of the last 50 years, the secretary said, and extended to the agency his deep admiration for its achievements.

“I would like to say that as secretary of defense, and I would like to say that on behalf of the intelligence community that I had the honor to be a part of in my time here in Washington, a grateful nation … is safer and more secure due to your tireless efforts,” Panetta said.

“On behalf of the entire Department of Defense and on behalf of the American people,” he continued, “thank you for your continued outstanding devotion to duty to this country, thank you for your service, thank you for your sacrifice, thank you for all you do to protect this nation.”

If the test of DIA is whether or not it has made a difference, the secretary said, “I think that history will look at the DIA and say they did a job well done … and the result is that we have a safer and more secure life for our children in the future.”

In the end, he added, “there can be no greater legacy.”

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Intellectual Roots of Terror

By James Ostrowski

As zebras are fascinated by lions, libertarians are fascinated by communists, their polar opposites and sworn enemies for the last 150 years. If one believes that society should function with an absolute minimum of governmental coercion, one is curious to know the results of a philosophy which places its faith in the maximum possible use of governmental coercion, force, and violence, to achieve its goals. If communism worked, we libertarians would be forced to check our premises and watch our backs.

Can the laboratory of communism also shed light on the viability of a related political philosophy, which also relies on centralized governmental coercion to achieve its goals: modern liberalism? The communists did all at once what stealthy left-liberals apparently intend to do piece by piece while we sleep. We just lived through a century in which liberals enacted several recommendations of the Communist Manifesto and transformed a night-watchman state into a welfare/warfare state with a continual flow of "progressive" legislation and various "Democrat wars" and crusades with the result that no one in my law school class in 1983 could identify, in response to Professor Henry Mark Holzer's query, any aspect of life that was not in some way regulated or controlled by the state. Seventeen years later, are they through?

Has liberalism closed up shop? Will they ever be through? Not until they have established an egalitarian utopia where virtually all responsibility for living has passed from the individual to the state. In the liberal utopia, if I may pilfer Paddy Chayefsky's words, "all necessities [will be] provided, all anxieties tranquilized, all boredom amused."

If you think I exaggerate, consider that liberals and communists share five critical… (Read the full article)


North American Liberation Press claims responsibility for arson and other attacks

BOISE, ID - Animal-rights group claims responsibility for fireworks-fur shop arson. In a letter obtained by the Associated Press, a group called the North American Liberation Press has claimed responsibility for an arson that torched the Rocky Mountain Fireworks and Fur Co., north of Caldwell, Idaho, September 26. The fire broke out around 5 a.m. at the facility on Highway 20-26, damaging the store that sells fireworks and fur. Crews from Caldwell, Eagle, Middleton, Parma, and Star battled the fire, while morning rush-hour traffic was diverted away from Exit 26 of Interstate 84. The FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, and Tobacco, and Canyon County Sheriff's Office are investigating.

On September 3, the North American Liberation Press claimed responsibility for destroying fencing at an Oregon elk farm. In June, the group targeted a Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, fur shop, soaking racks of clothing with chemicals.

Source: Boise Weekly, via Department of Homeland Security Daily Open Source Infrastructure Report

Former Guard Charged with Attempting to Communicate National Defense Information to People’s Republic of China

WASHINGTON – Bryan Underwood, a former contract guard working at a U.S. Consulate in China, has been charged in a superseding indictment with one count of attempting to communicate national defense information to a foreign government, two counts of making false statements and one count of failing to appear in court pursuant to his conditions of release.  

The superseding indictment, which was returned today by a federal grand jury in the District of Columbia, was announced by Lisa Monaco, Assistant Attorney General for National Security; Ronald C. Machen Jr., U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia; and James W. McJunkin, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office.

Underwood, 31, was first charged in an indictment on Aug. 31, 2011, with two counts of making false statements and was arrested on Sept. 1, 2011.   On Sept. 21, 2011, Underwood was scheduled to appear at a status hearing in federal court in the District of Columbia, but failed to do so.   The FBI located Underwood in Los Angeles and arrested him there in the early morning hours of Sept. 24, 2011.   Underwood will be brought back to the District of Columbia for arraignment on the superseding indictment.   If convicted of the charges against him in the superseding indictment, Underwood faces a maximum potential sentence of life in prison.

According to the superseding indictment, from about March 1, 2011, to about Aug. 5, 2011, Underwood knowingly and unlawfully attempted to communicate photographs and other information relating to the national defense to representatives of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), with the intent and reason to believe that these materials would be used to the injury of the United States and to the advantage of a foreign nation.

The indictment further alleges that on Aug. 5, 2011, Underwood made a false statement when he stated to an FBI representative that he was intending to assist the FBI when he wrote a letter stating his “interest in initiating a business arrangement” with the PRC.   Underwood also made a false statement, according to the indictment, when he stated to an FBI representative that he was intending to assist the FBI when he took certain photographs of his place of work.   Finally, the indictment alleges that Underwood failed to appear in court on Sept. 21, 2011 in accordance with the conditions of his release, after his initial arrest on Aug. 31, 2011.

“ As this case demonstrates, we remain vigilant in protecting America’s secrets and in bringing to justice those who attempt to compromise them,” said Assistant Attorney General Monaco.

“Our national security depends upon our ability to keep our most sensitive information confidential.  Bryan Underwood is charged with trying to pass American secrets to China and then lying to cover up his betrayal,” said U.S. Attorney Machen. “I want to congratulate the FBI for so quickly tracking down this defendant in California so that he could be brought back to the District of Columbia to face these charges.”

“The FBI is committed to working with our partners in the U.S. Government to prevent the compromise of U.S. national security information by those who would attempt to sell it for personal gain,” said FBI Assistant Director in Charge McJunkin. “Those who seek to flee from justice should know that the FBI will locate and apprehend them.”

This investigation was conducted by the FBI’s Washington Field Office, with assistance from the State Department’s Bureau of Diplomatic Security. The prosecution is being handled by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and Trial Attorney Ryan Fayhee from the Counterespionage Section of the Justice Department’s National Security Division.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Black Liberation Army Militant Captured After More Than 40 Years

Note: The Black Liberation Army (BLA) was an underground, black nationalist-Marxist militant organization that operated in the United States from 1970 to 1981. Composed largely of former Black Panthers (BPP), the organization's program was one of "armed struggle" and its stated goal was to "take up arms for the liberation and self-determination of black people in the United States." The BLA carried out a series of bombings, robberies (what participants termed "expropriations"), and prison breaks.

NEWARK, NJ—The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), United States Marshals Service, New Jersey Department of Corrections, and the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office jointly announce that George Wright, a fugitive for over 41 years, was arrested yesterday by Portuguese authorities, pursuant to a provisional arrest request from the United States. The United States is seeking his extradition from Portugal to serve the remainder of a 15- to 30-year sentence for a New Jersey state murder conviction.

On November 23, 1962, George Wright and three associates were involved in the commission of multiple armed robberies. During the second of these robberies, Wright and an associate shot and killed Walter Patterson, a World War II veteran and Bronze Star recipient, during the robbery of the Collingswood Esso gas station in Wall, New Jersey.

Wright was arrested two days later and was indicted on state charges along with his associates on December 13, 1962. On February 15, 1963, Wright entered a plea of “no defense” to the charge of murder. Wright was subsequently sentenced to 15 to 30 years’ incarceration.

On August 19, 1970, George Wright and three other men escaped from Bayside State Prison in Leesburg, New Jersey. Subsequent to his escape, Wright traveled to Detroit and became affiliated with the Black Liberation Army. On July 31, 1972, five adults, accompanied by three small children, hijacked Delta flight 841 en route from Detroit to Miami. Subsequent investigation identified Wright as one of the hijackers.

Armed Black Panther Party members.
The Black Panther Party splintered
into several groups, one of them the
Black Liberation Army. Part of the
Black Panther rules was not joining
any "army force" other than the BLA.
Upon landing in Miami, Wright and his associates demanded a $1 million ransom in exchange for the passengers—the largest ransom of its kind at that time. After releasing the passengers, Wright and his associates forced the plane to fly to Boston for refueling and the addition of another pilot, and then proceeded across the Atlantic to Algeria where they sought asylum. At the request of the United States government, the money and plane were eventually seized and returned by Algeria to the Unites States. Wright and his associates were briefly taken into custody but were eventually released after a few days.

On May 26, 1976, Wright’s associates were located and arrested in Paris, France by the French National Police. The four adults were tried and convicted in French court. Since that time, George Wright has remained the lone fugitive, on the run since his escape on August 19, 1970.

Michael Ward, Special Agent In Charge of the FBI’s Newark Division, remarked: “The investigation into George Wright serves as an example of law enforcement strength and tenacity. Even after 40 years, the commitment of law enforcement is unwavering and through the vast contributions of a multitude of people in New Jersey, Washington, D.C., and Portugal, Wright was successfully taken into custody. This case should also serve notice that the FBI’s determination in pursuing subjects will not diminish over time or distance.”

Juan Mattos, United States Marshal for the District of New Jersey, added: “The United States Marshals Service recently celebrated its 222nd year of constitutional authority, and this investigation of George Wright, with our partner agencies, the New Jersey Department of Corrections, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Judiciary Police in Portugal, defines our relentless pursuit of felon fugitives both domestically and internationally. This was a perfect example of interagency cooperation. I want to acknowledge the remarkable investigative efforts of the United States Marshals Service NY/NJ Regional Fugitive Task Force. Over the course of nine years, their tenacious resolve has proven to be very powerful in seeking justice and closure for the victims.”

Gary M. Lanigan, Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Corrections, also added: “Inmate George Wright was convicted of killing Walter Patterson, a gas station owner, 48 years ago. The crime left two young girls without a father. Despite the passage of time, justice has been served, and George Wright will pay for his crime. I commend members of the U.S. Marshals Service and our Special Investigations Division’s Fugitive Unit, as well as the FBI and the many other law enforcement bodies in the United States and Europe, for their untiring efforts in following leads over the years and locating this fugitive.”

This capture is the result of persistent, dedicated work by investigators from the FBI, U.S. Marshals Service, and the New Jersey Department of Corrections, and the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office. Additional vital assistance was provided by the U.S. Department of State, the Department of Justice Office of International Affairs, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, and the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General. Most importantly, Portuguese authorities, specifically the Judiciary Police, have been very instrumental in this matter. Without their friendship, cooperation, and assistance, the success of this investigation could not have been realized.

Media Contacts:
FBI: Bryan Travers, 973-792-3020

New Jersey Department of Corrections: Matt Schuman or Deirdre Fedkenheuer, 609-292-4224 (or 9340)

U.S. Marshals Service: Mike Schroeder, 973-390-7307

BLA note was extracted from Wikipedia. Black Panther image was obtained from Wikimedia Commons and is in accordance with fair use. The copyright status of the image is unclear.

PaCom Commander: North Korea Remains Central Concern

By Karen Parrish
American Forces Press Service

A KPA (North Korean) soldier stands
guard at his post at the DMZ
WASHINGTON, Sept. 27, 2011 – North Korea’s challenges to Asia-Pacific security and stability were most acute in 2010, but remain a central concern for U.S. Pacific Command, Pacom’s commander said today.

North Korea’s nuclear program and military objectives are a Pacom focus, and the command’s people work within the U.S. government and with regional partners to see North Korea “change trajectory,” Navy Adm. Robert F. Willard told reporters at the Foreign Press Center here.

In March 2010, North Korean forces sank the South Korean ship Cheonan, killing 46 South Korean sailors. In November, North Korea launched an artillery attack on Yeonpyeong Island, killing two South Korean marines and two civilians. In the wake of those attacks, the attitude of South Korea’s leaders and people has “fundamentally changed,” Willard said.

“There is very strong … intolerance at this point for any further provocations,” he added.

Kim Jong-un’s rise to prominence as North Korea’s likely next ruler, following his father, Kim Jong-il, may mean further provocations will come, Willard said.

“In the past, succession has come with provocation as the new leadership has attempted to establish their bona fides with the North Korean military,” the admiral said.

Kim Jong-un’s prominence during the 2010 attacks “was not lost on us,” Willard said. “The prospects that he could be somehow accountable in a next provocation [are] important to understand as well,” he added.

Kim Jong-il’s health may largely determine the timing of future attacks, the admiral noted.

Kim Jong-un
“We watch North Korea closely, as you would expect us to,” Willard said. “We try to determine the succession dynamics that are ongoing, especially as we approach 2012, which the North Koreans have declared as an auspicious year for themselves and what that may portend in terms of Kim Jong-un’s leadership position.”

North Korea conducted nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009. In January, then-Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said he believed North Korea would develop an intercontinental ballistic missile that would be a “direct threat” to the United States within five years.

Willard said members of his command watch North Korea’s nuclear developments “very carefully.”

“We are concerned … that [Kim Jong-il] will continue to promote his ballistic missile programs, as well as his weapon programs,” the admiral said. “It’s very much the subject of the discussions that are going on right now between the United States and [North Korea], and I think South Korea and [North Korea] as well.”

In response to a question on a possible U.S. sale of Global Hawk surveillance vehicles to South Korea, Willard said he has frequent discussions with South Korean officials about their capabilities and “the potential for U.S. procurement of defense articles that can service their needs.”

“There are discussions ongoing with regard to surveillance capabilities in the South, and I think the United States, as you know, is very guarded about these high-tech capabilities being provided as defense articles. So that discussion is, in fact, occurring,” the admiral said, noting the countries’ strong alliance.

“When you consider … the fact that we have 30,000 troops in the Republic of Korea and we are very, very closely aligned with the Koreans in terms of all our military capabilities, the prospects that our highly technical capabilities could ultimately be part of a foreign military sale is a consideration,” he said.

KPA and Kim Jong-un photos are in the public domain and were obtained from Wikimedia Commons.

The People’s Republic of China: A Brief History, part 4

Continued from Part 3
Roadside billboard commemorating
Deng Xiaoping at Lychee Park in
Post-Deng Leadership
Deng's health deteriorated in the years prior to his death in 1997. During that time, Party General Secretary and P.R.C. President Jiang Zemin and other members of his generation gradually assumed control of the day-to-day functions of government. This "third generation" leadership governed collectively with Jiang at the center.
In the fall of 1987, Jiang was re-elected Party General Secretary at the 15th Party Congress, and in March 1998 he was re-elected President during the 9th National People's Congress. Premier Li Peng was constitutionally required to step down from that post. He was elected to the chairmanship of the National People's Congress. The reform-minded pragmatist Zhu Rongji was selected to replace Li as Premier.
In November 2002, the 16th Communist Party Congress elected Hu Jintao as the new General Secretary. In 1992 Deng Xiaoping had informally designated Hu Jintao as the leading figure among the "fourth generation" leaders. A new Politburo and Politburo Standing Committee was also elected in November.
In March 2003, General Secretary Hu Jintao was elected President at the 10th National People's Congress. Jiang Zemin retained the chairmanship of the Central Military Commission. At the Fourth Party Plenum in September 2004, Jiang Zemin retired from the Central Military Commission, passing the Chairmanship and control of the People's Liberation Army to President Hu Jintao.
The Chinese Communist Party’s 17th Party Congress, held in October 2007, saw the elevation of key “fifth generation” leaders to the Politburo and Standing Committee, including Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang, Li Yuanchao, and Wang Yang. At the National People’s Congress plenary held in March 2008, Xi was elected Vice President of the government, and Li Keqiang was elected Vice Premier. The 18th Party Congress is scheduled to be held in the fall of 2012. It is expected that President Hu Jintao, in keeping with precedent, will step down as the party's General Secretary at that time, and the Congress will elect the 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
Continued in Part 5: Human Rights
Deng billboard image is in the public domain and was obtained from Wikimedia Commons

China: Tibetan Monks Protest

Office of the Spokesperson (State Department)
Washington, DC

Question Taken at the September 27, 2011, Daily Press Briefing

Question: What is the State Department’s response to press reports that two Tibetan monks set themselves on fire at a monastery in western China to protest Chinese policies in the area?

Answer: We are seriously concerned by reports of two recent self-immolations of monks from the Ngaba Kirti monastery in China’s Sichuan province. In light of the continuing underlying grievances of China’s Tibetan population, we again urge Chinese leaders to respect the rights of Tibetans, to address policies in Tibetan areas that have created tension, and to protect Tibetans’ unique religious, cultural and linguistic identity. We continue to urge the Chinese Government to allow access to Tibetan areas of China for both journalists and diplomats.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Terrorist Designation of Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) Leader Jurdan Martitegui Lizaso

The snake represents
political struggle while the
axe stands for armed
struggle. They are inter-
twined to show that the
two types od struggle are
The Department of State has designated Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) leader Jurdan Martitegui Lizaso under Executive Order 13224, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism. As a result of this designation, all property subject to U.S. jurisdiction in which Jurdan Martitegui Lizaso has any interest is blocked and U.S. persons are prohibited from engaging in any transactions with him. This action will help stem the flow of financial and other assistance to this ETA leader.

Martitegui’s status as a long term ETA member and his engagement in terrorist activities such as murder, bombing, recruiting, training, and providing logistical support for a terrorist organization, constitute a threat to U.S. interests. Martitegui actively participated in ETA’s Vizcaya Command, a group responsible for numerous terrorist acts including the 2006 bombing of Madrid’s Barajas international airport parking garage.

ETA, designated by the United States as a Foreign Terrorist Organization in 1997, is responsible for killing more than 800 civilians, police, and military personnel, while injuring thousands since it formally began its campaign of violence in 1968. ETA has primarily used bombing and assassinations, targeting Spanish government officials, security and military forces, politicians, businessmen, judicial figures, journalists, and tourists.

Note: The ETA is a Marxist-Leninist guerrilla army operating in parts of Spain and France.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

MOU with Ukraine on Nuclear Security Cooperation

Office of the Spokesperson (State Department)
Washington, DC

Flag of the Republic of Ukraine
On September 26, Secretary Clinton signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Gryshchenko on nuclear security cooperation. This Memorandum of Understanding formalizes the shared intent of the United States and Ukraine to implement fully the commitment that President Obama and President Yanukovych undertook at last year’s Nuclear Security Summit to work together to prevent proliferation and to secure all vulnerable nuclear material. President Yanukovych announced Ukraine’s decision to get rid of all of its stocks of highly enriched uranium by March 2012, when the next Nuclear Security Summit will convene.

The United States undertook to provide Ukraine with financial and technical assistance to help with elimination of the highly enriched uranium and to modernize Ukraine’s civil nuclear research facilities. The United States is assisting with the conversion of those facilities to operate on safer, low enriched uranium fuel and is building a state-of-the-art neutron source facility in Ukraine. In addition to new research capabilities, the neutron source facility will be able to produce over 50 different medical isotopes to treat cancer and other diseases. The facility will be equipped with the most up-to-date technology to ensure that it operates at the highest safety standards. The United States is committed to meet all agreed milestones for construction of the neutron source facility by March 2012 and to provide a fully operational facility by 2014. The estimated total value of the financial and technical assistance to be provided by the United States is expected to exceed $60 million.

We have already made significant progress toward these shared goals. Ukraine has already rid itself of a substantial portion of its highly enriched uranium and expects to complete the process early next year; the United States has made substantial progress on the neutron source facility project and expects a ground-breaking in Ukraine in the coming months. Cooperation with Ukraine on this matter is an important part of President Obama’s initiative to secure all vulnerable nuclear material worldwide.

This deal is a win-win. It provides tangible benefits for the people of Ukraine, and it makes the world a safer place to live for all people.

Note: Ukraine is a former Soviet Socialist Republic.  The United States and democratic Ukraine are working together to un-do the unvelievable nuclear arms build ups of the Cold War.

Ukrainian flag image is in the public domain. Used courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Former FARC Guerilla Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison for Providing Material Support to a Foreign Terrorist Organization

SEP 19 -- MANHATTAN -- Acting Special Agent in Charge of the New York Field Division United States Drug Enforcement Administration Wilbert L. Plummer and United States Attorney Preet Bharara for the Southern District of New York, announced that Yarlei Bañol-Ramos, a former guerilla for the 57th Front of the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (the "FARC"), was sentenced on Friday, September 16, 2011 by U.S. District Judge William H. Pauley III to 15 years in prison for conspiring to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. She was arrested in February 2008 with coconspirator Jorge Abel Ibarguen-Palacio and others following a firefight with the Panamanian National Police ("PNP") on vessels off the coast of Panama. Bañol-Ramos pled guilty on February 28, 2011.

"The events leading up to her capture paint a very clear picture of the lengths Yarlei Banol-Ramos was willing to go to in the name of the FARC, “ said Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara. “Her successful prosecution underscores this Office’s commitment to bringing members of this dangerous terrorist organization to justice."

According to the Indictment to which Bañol-Ramos pled guilty, the criminal complaint previously filed in the case, related Indictments of other FARC guerillas whose cases are pending in the Southern District of New York, and statements made during the guilty plea proceeding:

The FARC is a terrorist group dedicated to the violent overthrow of Colombia's democratically-elected government. It consists of a highly structured criminal organization, styled as a military group with "blocs," "fronts," and "militias," as well as governing bodies known as the "Secretariat" and the "Estado Mayor." The 57th Front of the FARC is located in the Choco Department of Colombia, which borders the Republic of Panama.

The 57th Front is involved in cocaine trafficking, and in obtaining supplies such as weapons, ammunition, uniforms, and other items for itself and other FARC fronts. The 57th Front also funds itself by kidnapping for ransom. Bañol-Ramos was a member of the 57th Front and agreed to work to further the FARC’s terrorist activities.

On the morning of February 22, 2008, the PNP approached a boat off the coast of Jaqué, Panama that appeared to need assistance. Bañol-Ramos, Ibarguen-Palacio and others were on deck dressed in civilian clothing. While the Panamanian police officers were towing the boat to shore, Bañol-Ramos and other FARC members pointed weapons at the police. Other police boats arrived to render assistance and rescue the officers who were being held captive. After an exchange of gunfire, which wounded at least one officer, Bañol-Ramos and her co-conspirators were arrested and taken into custody by the Panamanian police.

An inventory of the boat revealed that it contained four fully loaded AK-47 automatic weapons and one Galil rifle, over 900 rounds of live ammunition, military equipment, communication equipment, FARC uniforms, FARC encampment equipment, and explosives and detonators. The presence of cocaine was also detected in various sections of the boat. In April 2008, the 57th Front kidnapped an American citizen living in Panama and held him hostage for over ten months until a ransom was paid.

In addition to the prison term, Judge Pauley sentenced Bañol-Ramos to three years of supervised release. At the sentencing, Judge Pauley said that Bañol-Ramos was a "very dangerous person who fully deserved the maximum sentence that the law permits." Ibarguen-Palacio also pled guilty in February 2011 and is scheduled to be sentenced on October 3, 2011, at 5:00 p.m.

Mr. Bharara praised the work of the DEA's New York Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Strike Force and the DEA's Panama Country Office. He also thanked the Fronteriza Policia, part of the Panamanian National Police, for their efforts and assistance.

This case is being handled by the Office's Terrorism and International Narcotics Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jeffrey A. Brown and Rebecca M. Ricigliano are in charge of the prosecution.

Note: "The 'Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – People's Army' is a Marxist–Leninist revolutionary guerrilla organization based in Colombia which is involved in the ongoing Colombian armed conflict. FARC-EP is a peasant army which has proclaimed itself to be a revolutionary agrarian, anti-imperialist Marxist-Leninist organization of Bolivarian inspiration." --Grace Livingstone, Inside Columbia: Drugs, Democracy, and War

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Deportation Ordered for Detroit Man Who Shot Jews as Nazi Policeman During World War II

Learn how German National Socialism and Soviet Communism were very similar in nature and both ascended from Marxian socialism.  Check out this video clip from the documentary film The Soviet Story (2009).

WASHINGTON – The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) has dismissed the appeal of John (Ivan) Kalymon of Troy, Mich. "(near Detroit), who was ordered removed from the United States earlier this year because of his participation in lethal acts of Nazi-sponsored persecution of Jews during World War II, announced Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Criminal Division and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton.   

The BIA upheld a Detroit immigration judge’s Jan. 31, 2011, decision that Kalymon was removable for shooting Jews while serving voluntarily as an armed member of the Nazi-sponsored Ukrainian Auxiliary Police (UAP) in German-occupied L’viv, Ukraine.    

“John Kalymon and his Ukrainian Police accomplices were indispensable participants in Nazi Germany’s campaign to exterminate the Jews of Europe during World War II,” said Assistant Attorney General Breuer. “Their actions ensured that tens of thousands of Jewish men, women and children were murdered in L’viv or rounded up and shipped to the Nazi death camp in Belzec or Nazi forced labor camps.  The Justice Department remains steadfast in our resolve to ensure that Holocaust perpetrators are not granted safe haven in this country.”

“We hope upholding this removal order helps bring justice to the families who were victimized by the reprehensible acts that this man committed,” said ICE Director Morton.  “The U.S. government will work tirelessly to identify and arrest those who have committed crimes against humanity so that they may not seek to gain safe haven in the United States.”

In January 2011, U.S. Immigration Judge Elizabeth Hacker ordered Kalymon removed from the United States.   Kalymon, 90, immigrated to the United States from Germany in 1949 and became a U.S. citizen in 1955.   In 2004, the Department of Justice filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Detroit seeking revocation of his U.S. citizenship.   Following trial, a federal judge granted that request in 2007, finding that Kalymon had participated in the rounding up and shooting of Jews during his voluntary 1941-44 service in the UAP.   The judge further found that Kalymon concealed his UAP service when applying for his U.S. immigrant visa.   The evidence included a seized Aug. 14, 1942, report, handwritten by Kalymon, in which he informed his UAP superiors that he had personally shot to death one Jew and had wounded another “during the Jewish operation” that day.   The evidence also included other reports from Kalymon’s commander that Kalymon had fired his weapon during forcible round-ups of Jews, in the course of which Jews were killed and wounded.   Judge Hacker ordered Kalymon deported to Germany, Ukraine, Poland or any other country that will admit him.

The BIA reviewed Judge Hacker’s decision and ruled that it agreed with the decision that “clear and convincing evidence” proffered by the Government “establishes the facts alleged” in the charging document.

“Ivan Kalymon was an integral part of the Nazi machinery of annihilation that ended the lives of more than 100,000 innocent men, women and children in L’viv,” said Eli M. Rosenbaum, Director of Human Rights Enforcement Strategy and Policy for the Criminal Division’s Human Rights and Special Prosecution Section (HRSP).   “This case is one of more than a hundred cases successfully prosecuted by the Department of Justice against wartime Nazi perpetrators, and it reflects the government’s continuing commitment to pursuing justice on behalf of the victims of the Holocaust and other human rights crimes.”

The Department of Justice’s Criminal Division announced the formation of HRSP on March 30, 2010, as part of the U.S. government’s efforts to bring human rights violators to justice and deny those violators safe haven in the United States.    The new section represents a merger of the Criminal Division’s former Domestic Security Section (DSS) and Office of Special Investigations (OSI).

This case is a result of the Justice Department’s ongoing efforts to identify, investigate and take legal action against former participants in Nazi persecution who reside in the United States.   Since the inception of this program in 1979, the department has won cases against 107 individuals who assisted in Nazi persecution.   In addition, 180 suspected Axis persecutors who sought to enter the United States have been blocked from doing so as a result of the department’s “watchlist” program, enforced in cooperation with the Department of Homeland Security.   The removal case against Kalymon was litigated by HRSP Senior Trial Attorney William H. Kenety V, with assistance from Frank Ledda, Senior Chief Counsel in the Detroit Office of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Additional information about the Justice Department’s human rights enforcement efforts can be found at

Note: German-occupied Ukraine was part of the Soviet Union which Nazi Germany invaded in 1941.  However, the Soviet Union was originally an ally of Nazi Germany in the war from 1939-41.