Saturday 22nd of February 2020

Halliburton Houston AGM Protest, Australian Port Federalisation and Security

Here's an extract from a lively account of the recent Halliburton AGM protest in Houston, at which numerous arrests occurred. The source is an anonymous writer on Collective Bellaciao

At the Four Seasons this morning, before 8 am, barricades were erected, over 30 Houston horse police, undercover cops and heavy foot police presence (photos) was amassed. By 8:30, the march had reached the hotel, with about 140 - 300 protesters with lots of puppets, and signs such as "stop cronyism." Dick Cheney flashed people video, photo, activists held signs, played a samba and did a funky dance. A break-away march was met by Houston Police, who attempted to corral them, with one arrest occurring. By 9 am, there were 12 activists inside the hotel. Four were escorted out by hotel security and Houston police, while the rest were detained. Outside, things began heating up with pushing, cops on horses and arrests. Some concerns have been raised about cruelty to the horses. The horses trampled several people.

Police used pain compliance on occupation inside hotel. Media were not allowed inside the shareholders meeting and protest. Police Officer # 4961, S. M. Forrester, admitted to a female activist that he had lost control of himself. Andrea Buffa and Medea Benjamin of Global Exchange, got inside the meeting and directly questioned war-profiteer / Halliburton CEO David Lesar. Prathap Chatterjee of Corp-Watch had a private five minute meeting with him which ended in vague assurances.

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I'm trying to collect information on a Homeland Security Consultant named Scott Bates who was in Adelaide a year ago. Since his involvement in the political reconstruction of Kosovo, From what I can see his main work has been strengthening security for ports.

I had a minor encounter with him last year. The part of the conversation missing from the following transcript is where Mr Bates told me to remember that Adelaide has been regarded as strategically important since before the Cuban Missile Crisis:

Mr Bates admits here that last tiime he was in Adelaide he was advising S.A. Premier Mike Rann on election campaign tactics. Which makes me wonder what he was doing at the annual Oakbank races with the Premier and Senators Hill, Minchin and Downer (Federal Ministers for Finance, Defence and Foreign Affairs respectively. I'd make a bet that it wasn't just to watch the horsies go round and round...

Scott Bates, Senior Policy Adviser to the US House of Representatives Homeland Security Committee (891ABC 10.36-10.54)Bates' career/Iraq:

Abraham: ... flicking through 'The 'Tiser' ... and there is an article and a photo of Premier Mike Rann with Sasha, his partner, and this man who's in the studio with us now, Scott Bates ... the Premier had mentioned Scott Bates was staying with him...

SB: Great to be with you here today ... I really appreciate being on what is perhaps one of the top three morning shows in Adelaide and I'm very excited about that.

Abraham: Now the Premier's told you to say that.

SB: Indeed.

Bevan: Very funny.

Abraham: Name the other two. No ... we'll talk to you about homeland security and what this job means but you are an interesting person. You are young ... at 26 you were the youngest Secretary of State in Virginia ... ever in America ...

SB: ... most of what I got to do was appoint people to boards and commissions ... that was one of the more interesting jobs I had ...

Abraham: Now I imagine you met Mike Rann through Craig James who's a ... we would call him a spin doctor, but a political consultant ... campaign guru.

SB: ... I had worked with Craig back in 1990 at a firm in Washington ... we had about a third of the US Senate as our clients that we helped with their communications efforts ... maybe in 1997 Craig said how about coming out and seeing a mate of mine, Mike Rann, and I'd heard about him ... we just hit it off right away and stayed in touch with him ...

Caller Richard: ... in your opinion as far as terrorism targets, do you think would a city that's advertising itself as a defence capital, a city that's got major global infrastructure headquarters moving in here, do you think that at the moment we might be becoming a larger potential terrorist target? ...

SB: ... I've met with Susan Carman who's your Director of Security and Emergency Preparedness here in South Australia ... at the beginning of the conversation I thought ... I'll have all these things to share with her and maybe ... teach South Australians. By the end of it ... we talked in some detail, you are years, literally years ahead in planning ... on protection of critical infrastructure and emergency preparedness than state governments surely in the United States and even our Federal Government ... when it comes to being a target I think what we have to think about is that who would have ever imagined that four aeroplanes would be smashed into buildings? Who would have ever imagined that 10 aeroplanes would have been attempted to be hijacked in the Philippines? ... I don't want to say that everywhere is a target because that's just kind of alarmist but I think it make sense to take proper precaution, to make sure you minimise risk ... yes these are trying times ... but really the world is a heck of a lot safer than it was say 40 years ago ...

Abraham: Did you help ... on Mike Rann's election campaign in 2002?

SB: Well I guess if you could consider help being ... going out to dinner and chewing the fat and having a glass of wine, I think that's help.

Abraham: ... I think you're mentioned in dispatches in Bob Ellis's book.

SB: Well as you know, Mr Ellis is a noted writer of Australian fiction. He ... I think he referred to me as one of the most interesting people he'd ever met and a 21st century hero. I pull that book out at every kind of party I have and do dramatic readings from it ... Adelaide is a very special place ... I first came here in 2000 and then back in 2001 ... when Mike was running for office ... first and foremost I've learned something about Australia that I hold dear is this concept of being a mate ... being a good friend and ... that transcends politics ... I'd say Mike is a great mate and that's why I came out. And that's why I'm here today. I've got two weeks of vacation and I came out for one week here.

Abraham: Scott Bates, thank you ...

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The main reason for looking is that the Australian Government has just announced its intentions to Federalise control of major ports.

The reason given has been to reduce bottlenecks in trade, but it's a timely coincidence given that the winner of the Destroyer contracts will be most likely announced next week.

Making the announcements in reverse order would have given too many people "the wrong idea"

My guess is that Adelaide will be chosen is that with it's smaller population to Melbourne, less lives would be lost in a maritime "terrorist attack"

It's a pretty safe bet given that three of the four submissions involve major work being carried out in Port Adelaide. As far as the systems integration work goes, BAE is probably the only company able for the job, and as they are "Adelaide based" it would be perfect for the work to be given to "local business".

Mr Bates' involvement indicates very close ties indeed between Adelaide and the U.S. on maritime security matters. No doubt his opinion will affect the outcome

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Would the United States ever consider faking attacks on itself in order to arouse the support of its citizens? They already did... forty years ago!

Operation Northwood was a planned faked attack on U.S. soil by Cuba, and included the proposal to blame streetside sniper shootings on "Cuban terrorists".

Substantiation for some dangerous hypotheticals arises in this scenario relating to the possible uses for the date 6/6/6

It's time for a walk in the sunshine...

All comments, criticisms and advice and opinions would be appreciated

interesting intersection

Richard, I'm still processing the info you've brought to the table. Suffice to say that I'm very interested in exploring just how strong the links are between Halliburton & subsiduaries, and Australian government / companies.

I found this link to the protests easier to follow, and it also contains all the links to the photos, audio & video mentioned.

Richard: Much better, ta! Where would we be without the indymedia network?

6/6/6

Oh yeah!

Syed Saleem Shahzad: Armageddon: Bringing it on at Asia Times.

Al-Qaeda is working to turn the story of Megiddo and the End of Time into reality. And the President of the United States, George W Bush, believes Armageddon is at hand: "The evil one is among us," he said in 2002, in a clear reference to the Antichrist. To quote Michael Ortiz Hill, "[T]he Commander in Chief of the most powerful military force in human history has located American foreign policy within a Biblical narrative that leads inexorably towards the plains of Megiddo ..."

Hang on! Some of these guys are serious. As are Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball at Newsweek in Consider the Source.

The State Department says MEK is a terror group. Human Rights Watch says it’s a cult. For the White House, MEK is a source of intelligence on Iran.

Richard: Very interesting par in the first link:

"In Islam, before the return of Jesus (Isa), the Mehdi (restorer of the faith), will appear at the end of time to restore justice on earth and establish universal Islam. The Mehdi will be preceded by al-Dajjal, a Muslim anti-god, who will be defeated and will try to flee from the valley of Har Megiddo, which is in the Jezreel valley, in the north of Israel. Due to its strategic location, it has seen many battles. In 1918, there was a decisive battle between the British and the Ottomans, and General Alenby won the title "Lord of Megiddo". The same area now serves as an Israeli airbase."

"oooh, it makes you wonder"

Who is MEK? n/t

Richard: Mojahedin--e Kalq, which, given that fighters under that name exist in Iraq, and that Afghanistan's Mujuhadeen were so successful as to become the Taleban (English spelling intended), is probably an Iranian-localised Arabic generic for "freedom force".

Silly Media

Consider the Source rhymes with "Consider the Force". This is the media you know and that is about Star Wars and making money and fiction TG.
Yes it makes me wonder about Alice in Wonderland and the white rabbit is more believable.

PPPs and KBR

Dr Sharman Stone (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Finance and Administration) spoke on public-private partnerships (PPPs) during her response to the Budget (Hansard for May 23 2005).

All these issues, as I said before, require there to be significant capacity, experience and skill in our government agencies. So in the Department of Finance and Administration we have developed a second tool to assist our agencies in evaluating the best procurement method for each large and significant program. Recently I launched what we call the private financing panel. This panel consists of some 20 financial and commercial advisers. The panellists have been competitively selected based on their extensive experience and expertise in areas of significance in the consideration of public-private partnerships as a procurement method. This panel can be accessed by all Australian government agencies that want specialist advice as they work through a PPP as an option for an infrastructure project. The panellists will give general policy and private financing advice, as well as risk management, taxation, accounting and strategic business advice. Some 20 Australian firms are represented on the panel.

The Private Financing Advisory Services Panel was introduced in a Media Release earlier in May, but so far the list has not reached the public view.

Dr Stone (op cit):
All this is also the subject of significant intrastate, interstate and Commonwealth consideration in what we have called a new national PPP forum.

The Fifth forum is on in Melbourne in a couple of weeks.

See AusCID for PPP projects. Check out the AusCID list of members.

I wonder if Halliburton is on that Panel?