Thomas R. Eddlem
Tea Party favorite and freshman Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) may have crossed a "third rail" of politics by suggesting that the federal government zero out all foreign aid — including even foreign aid to Israel, America's largest foreign aid recipient over the past 30 years.
The Obama administration used bribes of up to $30 billion in foreign aid and spying by the CIA to force underdeveloped nations to agree to the Copenhagen summit documents, according to the WikiLeaks documents analyzed by the London Guardian. The documents, the Guardian summarized December 3, revealed that “money and threats buy political support; spying and cyberwarfare are used to seek out leverage.”
The Internet-based watchdog site WikiLeaks began releasing more than 250,000 U.S. diplomatic cables in batches beginning November 28, earning the condemnation of the Obama administration and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The documents, which include frank assessments of foreign political officials, have already embarrassed U.S. diplomats to a variety of countries.
On October 22 the Internet-based whistleblower organization WikiLeaks published some 391,000 classified U.S. military documents on the Iraq War. WikiLeaks alleges the documents prove that the U.S. government continued to look the other way to Iraqi government torture through the end of the first year of the Obama administration and that civilian casualties in the Iraq war were much higher than publicly documented.
President Barack Obama claimed August 31 in an Oval Office address to the nation that “tonight, I am announcing that the American combat mission in Iraq has ended. Operation Iraqi Freedom is over, and the Iraqi people now have lead responsibility for the security of their country.”
The first U.S. soldier in Iraq has been killed since the withdrawal of the last “combat” brigade from the country on August 18, according to the Manchester (UK) Guardian. The death demonstrates that Americans will continue to fight and die in Iraq even though President Obama publicly announced “combat operations” have officially ended. The soldier was reportedly killed in a mortar attack on a U.S. air base in Basra, and the Pentagon has not yet released the name of the deceased. The Pentagon estimates that 52,000 U.S. Army soldiers and Marines remain in Iraq.
President Barack Obama announced “America’s combat mission in Iraq would end” in an August 2 address to the Disabled American Veterans, but the details of the announcement have revealed that American soldiers will continue to fight and die in Iraq for at least another 18 months, if not longer.
Federal officials charged the alleged source for the April Wikileaks video that exposed U.S. helicopter gunners committing war crimes in Baghdad in 2007, Pfc. Bradley Manning, with a variety of charges July 5. The New York Times reported that Manning has also been “charged with downloading more than 150,000 highly classified diplomatic cables that could, if made public, reveal the inner workings of American embassies around the world, the military here announced on Tuesday.”