Ken's Thoughts...
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Sat, 17 Sep 2005

The Circus
Your humble reporter arrived on campus around 9am to begin participating in the celebration that is the annual battle of the grid-iron between the Tennessee Volunteers and the Florida Gators. Already, the smell of BBQ permeated the air as grills were lit, drinks were mixed, and the party was beginning to ramp up. The fans have been tailgating in full force. This humble reporter had to do his best and consume beer as quickly as it was offered to him by fellow thankful fans.

The Volunteers are in town, the eyes of these poor folk reflecting the dim glow that reflects their intellect. Sadness is also reflected in their demeaner; they know that with Ron Zooks departure, their hope of owning the swamp one last time is probably gone. Dreams of lost glory, when Peyton Manning held the mantle as the top player of the "orange crush" fill the air; in their hearts they know their biggest fear is about to be realized.

They fear that Rocky Top will not be played by the UT band this evening, but rather by the Gator Band, mocking their loss.

Your humble reporter stopped and sat next to a nice elderly couple with UT shirts on. Although they have been married for forty years, they have been brother and sister for fifty-five. The reporter made sure to ask if they were enjoying their stay in Gainesville, and wished them the best of luck. Knowing it would be in poor taste to wish the humiliation of their football team on national television, the reporter lied to them and said he hoped it'd be a close game for their sake, but not too close. They confirmed the suspicion of your reporter, that most of the volunteer faithful believe tonights crusade is a lost cause before it has even begun. They informed your reporter that they believe the recent change in coaching staff at the University of Florida will make a huge impact on the outcome of tonights battle.

Gator fans on the other hand have been jubilant. They know that URBAN MAYER is the real deal. This new era is filled with promise from a talented coaching staff and an incredibly talented roster which is about to meet their biggest challenge of the year. There is no question: Tonight will set the stage for the young team for the rest of the year. Will this be the team that finally answers the call of "Wait until next year?" The conventional wisdom around Gainesville says it is.

As your reporter wandered among the crowd, a band played at a charity benefit for hurricane relief right across the street from Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. The lead singer declared that tonight the Volunteers would have their two front teeth kicked in, but your reporter felt that was a little harsh.

Maybe just one tooth and a noogie.

Besides being one of the greatest battles on the gridiron, tonight will also set a milestone in Florida history. For tonight, a state record for the most people to ever attend a sporting event will be set. One of the Universities Finest mentioned to your humble reporter that the campus police department were expecting approximately 92,000 screaming fans to take to the stadium right before the 8PM kick-off. Ken

Posted at: 21:15 on 17/09/2005   [ / ] #

Fri, 19 Aug 2005

The Town Square, a sketch written in Bar Harbor
The setting; a town square at dusk.

A woman is staring at a light pole, her hands are covering her eyes, and she counts, "One!"

A little boy is tossing a ball up in the air and catching it, while his dad is tossing his baby sister up in the air and catching her.


A college aged kid who flunked out of school is walking around with a mandolin, looking to earn enough money tonight to buy some beer or score dope.


A little boy is riding his bicycle - thrilled that a month ago his training wheels came off forever. His father beams at him, proud that his boy is able to master the bicycle.


A little girl, not more than four years of age, pushes a stroller which holds her six-week old baby brother.


Two lovers are stretched out on the soft grass, basking in the suns warmth. Tonight she plans on telling him they will be having a baby. He will ask her to marry him.


A nuclear family, Mother, Father, two boys and a sister, have spread out a blanket to enjoy a picnic. They pull out of the blanket boxes of fried chicken, corn, and mashed potatos. For dessert, they will have blueberry pie.


The college drop-out starts playing his mandolin. Although he has only been playing the mandolin for about six months, he has learned two songs well enough that he can earn enough money to survive. He starts playing a gaellic tune.


A group of elderly menonite ladies, who are on tour to visit this town, frump their way through the square, disapproving of almost everything they see.


A mother spins her daughter in circles. The girl laughs hysterically after she loses her balance and falls down on her bottom.


Two high school aged girls, looking for adventure, are sitting under a tree. One is chewing gum, the other is smoking a cigarette but coughs like someone who is not used to smoking. Both are wearing halter-tops and mini-skirts. Both look bored.

"Ready or not, here I come!"

The woman finds her son hiding behind some bushes and the chase begins again.

Posted at: 19:03 on 19/08/2005   [ / ] #

Tue, 05 Jul 2005

What's wrong with our media?
Last week Newsweek broke
the story about who 'outed' Valerie Plame..

For those of you who don't know, Val Plame was a CIA operative whose identity was compromised strictly for political payback against her husband, Joe Wilson.

Knowingly revealing the identity of an undercover operative is considered a treasonous act under federal law, and George H.W. Bush (41) has previous decried it as one of the most heinous acts a person could do.

So it looks like Dubya's bestest buddy, the one who was personally responsible for orchestrating the big win last year, is the loud mouth who committed an act of treason.

And where has our media been on reporting this?

A top aide to the president of the United States committed an act of treason, jeopardized an intelligence asset and compromised her network at a time when we need the best possible foreign intelligence, and no one is reporting it.

If this had happened in the Clinton Whitehouse there'd be a GOP lynch-mob standing at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue calling for Rove's head right now.

The silence is deafening. Overwhelming really.

I'm stunned.

Posted at: 14:10 on 05/07/2005   [ / ] #

Sun, 15 May 2005

the cat
meow meow, hiss, scratch.

shake shake shake. spasm.

bump bump, (as the head bangs the wall)

Posted at: 13:36 on 15/05/2005   [ / ] #

Thu, 06 Jan 2005

Fox News Wins Appeal
Hooray for media and journalistic integrity in Amerika! Fox News has
won, on appeal, the right to willingly and knowingly lie on air!

Posted at: 13:06 on 06/01/2005   [ / ] #

Sun, 05 Dec 2004

US Military Eliminates Innocent Witnesses
I'm not up to editing this to put it online. It's just a continuing bit of the sickness that's going on. The original link is at
the guardian.

Posted at: 22:09 on 05/12/2004   [ / ] #

Wed, 22 Sep 2004

More Horros from the Eastern Front
disturbing reports from overseas. It's really no wonder why the whole world hates us.

Posted at: 13:01 on 22/09/2004   [ / ] #

Sat, 17 Jul 2004

More wonderful news from around the world..
It's not just prisoners that have been mistreated in Abu-Gharab, but also children. The
Norwegians are pissed at us, and German TV is running the spots.

Of course, the guys we put in power in Iraq are all good men, especially Dr. Allawi.

Meanwhile, back in the good ole U.S. of A, the Repubs are trying their damndest to stage another Coup D'Etat. If they can't win it by hook, maybe by crook. Be sure to read the new republic articles linked in the next section after the German TV article.

And finally, don't forget what Bush says. John Kerry hates pregnant women, so if you like to protect fetuses, you should vote for Bush. When I first saw this strip I laughed hysterically, and then I saw the commercial mentioned in this article and I felt sick to my stomache.

Posted at: 03:28 on 17/07/2004   [ / ] #

Wed, 07 Jul 2004

Who gassed the Kurds?
It looks like
Saddam may be innocent of gassing the kurds..

Saddam Could Call CIA in His Defence

Fri Jul 2, 1:58 PM ET
Sanjay Suri, Inter Press Service (IPS)

LONDON, Jul 2 (IPS) Evidence offered by a top CIA (news - web sites) man could confirm the testimony given by Saddam Hussein (news - web sites) at the opening of his trial in Baghdad Thursday that he knew of the Halabja massacre only from the newspapers.

Thousands were reported killed in the gassing of Iraqi Kurds in Halabja in the north of Iraq (news - web sites) in March 1988 towards the end of Iraq's eight-year war with Iran. The gassing of the Kurds has long been held to be the work of Ali Hassan al-Majid, named in the West because of that association as 'Chemical Ali'. Saddam Hussein is widely alleged to have ordered Ali to carry out the chemical attack.

The Halabja massacre is now prominent among the charges read out against Saddam in the Baghdad court. When that charge was read out, Saddam replied that he had read about the massacre in a newspaper. Saddam has denied these allegations ever since they were made. But now with a trial on, he could summon a witness in his defence with the potential to blow apart the charge and create one of the greatest diplomatic disasters the United States has ever known.

A report prepared by the top CIA official handling the matter says Saddam Hussein was not responsible for the massacre, and indicates that it was the work of Iranians. Further, the Scott inquiry on the role of the British government has gathered evidence that following the massacre the United States in fact armed Saddam Hussein to counter the Iranians chemicals for chemicals.

Few believe that a CIA man would attend a court hearing in Baghdad in defence of Saddam. But in this case the CIA boss has gone public with his evidence, and this evidence has been in the public domain for more than a year.

The CIA officer Stephen C. Pelletiere was the agency's senior political analyst on Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war. As professor at the Army War College from 1988 to 2000, he says he was privy to much of the classified material that flowed through Washington having to do with the Persian Gulf.

In addition, he says he headed a 1991 Army investigation into how the Iraqis would fight a war against the United States, and the classified version of the report went into great detail on the Halabja affair.

Pelletiere went public with his information on no less a platform than The New York Times in an article on January 31 last year titled 'A War Crime or an Act of War?' The article which challenged the case for war quoted U.S. President George W. Bush (news - web sites) as saying: "The dictator who is assembling the world's most dangerous weapons has already used them on whole villages, leaving thousands of his own citizens dead, blind or disfigured."

Pelletiere says the United States Defence Intelligence Agency investigated and produced a classified report following the Halabja gassing, which it circulated within the intelligence community on a need-to-know basis. "That study asserted that it was Iranian gas that killed the Kurds, not Iraqi gas," he wrote in The New York Times.

The agency did find that each side used gas against the other in the battle around Halabja, he said. "The condition of the dead Kurds' bodies, however, indicated they had been killed with a blood agent -- that is, a cyanide-based gas -- which Iran was known to use. "The Iraqis, who are thought to have used mustard gas in the battle, are not known to have possessed blood agents at the time."

Pelletiere write that these facts have "long been in the public domain but, extraordinarily, as often as the Halabja affair is cited, they are rarely mentioned."

Pelletiere wrote that Saddam Hussein has much to answer for in the area of human rights abuses. "But accusing him of gassing his own people at Halabja as an act of genocide is not correct, because as far as the information we have goes, all of the cases where gas was used involved battles. These were tragedies of war. There may be justifications for invading Iraq, but Halabja is not one of them."

Pelletiere has maintained his position. All Saddam would have to do in court now is to cite The New York Times article even if the court would not summon Pelletiere. The issues raised in the article would themselves be sufficient to raise serious questions about the charges filed against Saddam and in turn the justifications offered last year for invading Iraq.

The Halabja killings were cited not just by Bush but by British Prime Minister Tony Blair (news - web sites) to justify his case for going along with a U.S. invasion of Iraq. A British government dossier released to justify the war on Iraq says that "Saddam has used chemical weapons, not only against an enemy state, but against his own people."

An inquiry report in 1996 by Lord Justice Scott in what came to be known as the arms-to-Iraq affair gave dramatic pointers to what followed after Halabja. After the use of poison gas in 1988 both the United States and Britain began to supply Saddam Hussein with even more chemical weapons.

The Scott inquiry had been set up in 1992 following the collapse of the trial in the case of Matrix Churchill, a British firm exporting equipment to Iraq that could be put to military use.

Three senior executives of Matrix Churchill said the government knew what Matrix Churchill was doing, and that its managing director Paul Henderson had been supplying information about Iraq to the British intelligence agencies on a regular basis.

The inquiry revealed details of the British government's secret decision to supply Saddam with even more weapons-related equipment after the Halabja killings.

Former British foreign secretary Geoffrey Howe was found to have written that the end of the Iraq-Iran war could mean "major opportunities for British industry" in military exports, but he wanted to keep that proposal quiet.

"It could look very cynical if so soon after expressing outrage about the treatment of the Kurds, we adopt a more flexible approach to arms sales," one of his officials told the Scott inquiry. Lord Scott condemned the government's decision to change its policy, while keeping MPs and the public in the dark.

Soon after the attack, the United States approved the export to Iraq of virus cultures and a billion-dollar contract to design and build a petrochemical plant the Iraqis planned to use to produce mustard gas.

Saddam Hussein has appeared so far without a lawyer to defend him. A Jordanian firm is reported to be speaking up for him. But the real defence for him could be waiting for him in Washington and London.

Posted at: 01:29 on 07/07/2004   [ / ] #

Thu, 05 Feb 2004

Wilson, revisited
Taken from

Cheney's Staff Focus of Probe
By Richard Sale

Federal law-enforcement officials said that they have developed hard evidence of possible criminal misconduct by two employees of Vice President Dick Cheney's office related to the unlawful exposure of a CIA officer's identity last year. The investigation, which is continuing, could lead to indictments, a Justice Department official said.

According to these sources, John Hannah and Cheney's chief of staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby, were the two Cheney employees. "We believe that Hannah was the major player in this," one federal law-enforcement officer said. Calls to the vice president's office were not returned, nor did Hannah and Libby return calls.

The strategy of the FBI is to make clear to Hannah "that he faces a real possibility of doing jail time" as a way to pressure him to name superiors, one federal law-enforcement official said.

The case centers on Valerie Plame, a CIA operative then working for the weapons of mass destruction division, and her husband, former ambassador Joseph Wilson, who served as ambassador to Gabon and as a senior U.S. diplomat in Baghdad in the early 1990s. Under President Bill Clinton, he was head of African affairs until he retired in 1998, according to press accounts.

Wilson was sent by the Bush administration in March 2002 to check on an allegation made by President George W. Bush in his State of the Union address the previous winter that Iraq had sought to buy uranium from the nation of Niger. Wilson returned with a report that said the claim was "highly doubtful."

On June 12, Washington Post reporter Walter Pincus revealed that an unnamed diplomat had "given a negative report" on the claim and then, on July 6, as the Bush administration was widely accused of manipulating intelligence to get American public opinion behind a war with Iraq, Wilson published an op-ed piece in the Post in which he accused the Bush administration of "misrepresenting the facts." His piece also asked, "What else are they lying about?"

According to one administration official, "The White House was really pissed, and began to contact six journalists in order to plant stories to discredit Wilson," according to the New York Times and other accounts.

As Pincus said in a Sept. 29 radio broadcast, "The reason for putting out the story about Wilson's wife working for the CIA was to undermine the credibility of [Wilson's] mission for the agency in Niger. Wilson, as the last top diplomat in Iraq at the time of the Gulf War, had credibility beyond his knowledge of Africa, which was his specialty. So his going to Niger to check the allegation that Iraq had sought uranium there and returning to say he had no confirmation was considered very credible."

Eight days later, columnist Robert Novak wrote a column in which he named Wilson's wife and revealed she was "an agency operative on weapons of mass destruction." Since Plame was working undercover, it exposed her and, in the opinion of some, ruined her usefulness and her career. It also violated a 1982 law that prohibits revealing the identity of U.S. intelligence agents.

On Oct. 7, Bush said that unauthorized disclosure of an undercover CIA officer's identity was "a criminal matter" and the Justice Department had begun its investigation into the source of the leak.

Richard Sale is an intelligence correspondent for UPI, a sister wire service of Insight magazine.

Posted at: 21:48 on 05/02/2004   [ / ] #


My photo album
My resume

Presentations and Papers

SAP Filtering 1998
Border Manager 1999
Astronomy Status 2002
Astronomy Update 2003
Linux on a CTX FC2A300
Honeynet Challenge entry