Not really a surprise.
After all that's why it needed to be passed before any of the representatives in Congress voting on it read it in full.
But it is rather startling.
Boy, do the owners think we're dumb.
Press Release | "WikiLeaks"
03 December 15
oday, Thursday, December 3, 10am EST, WikiLeaks releases new secret documents from the huge Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) which is being negotiated by the US, EU and 22 other countries that account for 2/3rds of global GDP. Coinciding with the ongoing climate talks in Paris, today's publication touches on issues of crucial relevance including the regulation of energy, industrial development, workers' rights and the natural environment. WikiLeaks is also publishing expert analyses of the documents._____________
The Trade In Services Agreement is the largest trade treaty of its kind in history. The economies of the 52 countries involved in the negotiation, which is being led by the United States, are mostly the supply of services. According to World Bank figures, services comprise 75% of the EU economy, 80% of the US economy and the majority of the global economy. Notably excluded in the TiSA negotiations are the emerging economies and the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).
The "Energy Related Services Annex Proposal: Questions and Answers" document sets out TiSA designs to create an international market in energy-related services for foreign suppliers. While heads of state prepare to sign climate accords in Paris, TiSA negotiators are meeting behind closed doors in Geneva to forge new limits on energy regulation.
The "Annex on Environmental Services" reveals that TiSA will aim to ensure that national environmental protections within TiSA countries will be "harmonized down", promoting the interests of multinational companies providing water purification, sanitation and refuse disposal services over worker safety, public health and the natural environment.
Assessing the agreement, Friends of the Earth calls TiSA "an environmental hazard", pointing out that public services of an environmentally sensitive nature are in danger of being privatized. Commenting on the "Annex on Road Freight Transport and Related Logistical Services", the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) calls TiSA a "race to the bottom," observing that the Annex joins other Annexes published by WikiLeaks to form an overarching trade liberalization agenda, fragmenting the trucking industry, opening up sensitive areas of the transport sector to international competition, and contributing to the ongoing privatization of public services, undercutting workers' rights, public health and safety, and the ability of national governments to plan and direct their own industrial and infrastructural development.
While the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Pact (TTIP) have received attention, the TiSA is the largest component of the United States' "Big Three," the triumvirate of strategic neoliberal trade deals being advanced by the Obama administration. Together, the three treaties form not only a new legal order hospitable for transnational corporations, but a new economic "grand enclosure", which excludes China and all other BRICS countries.
Click on title link for maps of the occupied areas.
Sudarsan Raghavan, "Washington Post"
Months after the Obama administration declared combat operations over in Afghanistan, the CIA continues to run a shadow war in the eastern part of the country, overseeing an Afghan proxy called the Khost Protection Force, according to local officials, former commanders of that militia and Western advisers.
The highly secretive paramilitary unit has been implicated in civilian killings, torture, questionable detentions, arbitrary arrests and use of excessive force in controversial night raids, abuses that have mostly not been previously disclosed.
The elite Afghan fighters and their American handlers came to Tor Ghar one night in September. Shortly after midnight, wearing tan camouflage and black masks, they entered a village in this remote mountainous area straddling the Pakistan border in search of militants with a Taliban-allied group, said local officials and tribal elders who later spoke with the force’s commanders.
Within minutes, the armed men had arrived at Darwar Khan’s house.
“When my father opened the gate, they shot him dead,” recalled Khan, who was inside the house at the time. “Then, they tossed a grenade into the compound, killing my mother.”
His father was a farmer. His mother was a housewife. It was not the first time the fighters had killed civilians in this strategic region. And it wouldn’t be the last allegation of wrongdoing.
This article is based on interviews with witnesses of six separate attacks by the militia in the past year, as well as court documents in the only known legal case filed against the unit, after one or more of its men shot dead a 14-year-old boy. Three former commanders of the unit, known as the KPF, tribal elders, lawmakers, lawyers, activists and local government officials with direct knowledge of the force and the CIA’s role were also interviewed.
In several attacks, witnesses described hearing English being spoken by armed men who had translators with them, suggesting American operatives were present during assaults where extreme force was used.
In an e-mailed statement, the agency’s spokesman, Dean Boyd, said that “we’ve taken significant steps to help the Afghan National Directorate of Security address allegations of human rights abuse.” The directorate, known as the NDS, ostensibly oversees the Khost force. Boyd declined to comment on any specific claims of abuse.
“We take seriously any allegation of abuse involving foreign liaison services and routinely work with them to rectify such matters,” said Boyd. “Our goal is always to improve the capabilities and professionalism of foreign counterparts.”
On Oct. 15, as President Obama announced that 5,500 U.S. troops would remain in Afghanistan past next year, he stressed that they would have just two missions — training Afghan forces and fighting al-Qaeda. Yet, throughout this year, there has been an aggressive American effort to stem Taliban territorial gains.
And the CIA, separate from the U.S. military, enjoys looser rules of engagement that have enabled it to expand targets to include the Taliban and its allies, the Haqqani network.
Here in this strategic eastern border province, which has long served as a key gateway for militants entering from Pakistan, the KPF fights in conjunction with the CIA out of Forward Operating Base Chapman.