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Peace Patriot

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Member since: Sat Nov 13, 2004, 12:56 AM
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I held my nose and clicked on this New York Slimes article to sniff out the strategy...

...that the U.S. and its transglobal corporate/ war profiteer masters are going to take with Ecuador, generally and with regard to the Assange asylum.

It occurs to me that this Juan José Illingworth is a good candidate for "great white hope" of said transglobals and war profiteers, rather like Capriles in Venezuela--an airbrushed leader with even better creds than Capriles. The Slimes make much of Illingworth and his noble ancestors--including one who fought with Simon Bolivar for Latin American independence--and his "English bona fides" (born in Manchester). They don't do this for just anybody. I strongly sense that he is being "groomed," as they say.

Look how they do go on about Illingworth:

---

"The family has a strong sense of history and its place in it. Its members walk through a city that has an Illingworth Street and an Illingworth Passage.

There are at least two statues and a bust of the Admiral, as their famous forebear is usually called. (The base of the statue in Navy Park contains a coffer with the Admiral’s remains. Mr. Illingworth was present a few years ago at the exhumation and was happy to see that, more than 150 years later, 'his skull was in perfect condition,' he said.)"
--The Slimes (from the OP)
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/11/world/americas/in-standoff-over-assange-ecuadoreans-close-ranks.html?pagewanted=all&_moc.semityn.www

---

That's one possible bit of strategy with which to undermine and destroy the hugely popular Correa and his leftist government--if Illingworth is buyable. Don't know that he is but that doesn't mean they aren't trying. They used him here (and he allowed himself to be used) to start off on a negative tack against Correa ("Mr. Illingworth is no fan of Ecuador’s president...blah, blah, blah...") that pretty much drips slime on Correa throughout the article with only one exception--the "Miriam Vilela, 40, a seamstress" section--but then they dis her as not well informed and they managed to capture a statement from her that makes the poor sound like "little Ayn Rands," all greedy and self-interested, knitting names for the Guillotine. (“Never retreat. What’s ours is ours.”)

In total, the article quotes four anti-Correa Ecuadorans and two vaguely described groups with anti-Correa criticisms, and only one Correa supporter and one Assange supporter. 6 to 2. That is the OPPOSITE of how things stand in Ecuador, as to Correa's popularity. And the only pro-Correa statement is that of the seamstress, above, who is dissed. This is a strategy of propaganda--falsely portraying a hugely popular, democratically elected, leftist president as, somehow, illegitimate, because all the people that New York Slimes stringers hang out with at the country clubs think so. Get this paragraph (which could be a USAID-written Capriles paragraph):

---

"Mr. Correa has made many broadly popular changes, improving health care, education, roads and social services. But he is a lightning rod and delights in in picking fights and taunting his opponents. He has been criticized by human rights groups for cracking down on popular protests and by dissident groups for seeking to intimidate and restrict the press." --The Slimes (from the OP) (my emphasis)

---

"A lightning rod"? "Delights in picking fights?" That's "colorful language"--very, very biased and presented, by the reporter, as reality. Go back and read it. Who is saying this? The reporter! And no one is asked to reply to this reporter's editorializing. The 70% of Ecuadorans who support Correa likely have a very different view of Correa's strong character and wouldn't call it "picking fights" and "taunting his opponents." But none of his many supporters is asked to respond to this view of his character, nor any of his aides or political allies, nor Correa himself. It is the unchallenged opinion of the reporter that Correa's championing of the poor (health care, education) and development of Ecuador (roads, social services) is being perpetrated by a bully and a loudmouth who has only his own political interest in mind. The reporter quotes several people questioning Correa's "political motives" with regard to Assange's asylum, starting with the Admiral's descendant. The conflation is plain. Correa has no good motives at all. He is a bad dude. Get it?

This isn't the worst reporting I've seen on the Latin American Left, but it's close. The Slimes tend to put a slick veneer on their character assassinations. Beware!

As for "seeking to intimidate and restrict the press": As with Chavez in Venezuela, the Corporate Press screams bloody murder when their monopolistic, propagandistic, so-called journalism gets challenged by democratic notions akin to our late, lamented "Fairness Doctrine." Both Chavez and Correa have done more for REAL "free speech"--the speech of ordinary people, the speech of excluded groups, the speech of the poor majority, the speech that the founders of our own country intended to protect with the 1st Amendment--than any political leaders in history, except maybe Thomas Jefferson and Tom Paine, and certainly than any political leaders in Latin American history. Both countries are now characterized by extremely high levels of public participation. Both countries are now characterized by intense, widespread political debate about substantive issues. The people of both countries wrote their own constitutions, debated every provision of their constitutions and put their constitutions to a vote of the people (both of which won, hands down), and that intense involvement with their own public life continues--and it puts our public life to shame.

What the New York Slimes means by "the press" is the corporate press. And, by "free speech," they mean corporate speech! They really, really don't want what the 1st Amendment was written to protect: the speech of ordinary citizens.

The strategy of punishing Ecuador for its independent stance on Assange and other matters (including, for instance, a recent Ecuadoran court ruling against Chevron-Texaco for its vast pollution of the Amazon rainforest, and Correa kicking the U.S. military out of Ecuador) emerges in the final paragragh. They found one guy, in all of Ecuador, who would criticize Correa for the Assange asylum decision. I wonder how many phone calls they had to make to get this:

---

"Enrique Ayala, the president of Simón Bolívar Andean University in Quito, said he believed that Mr. Assange had been politically persecuted and ran the risk of being accused of a crime by the United States for the release of secret documents and diplomatic cables. But he said that granting asylum was a mistake.

“'It isn’t in the best interests of Ecuador to have taken this step, which creates conflict with various countries,' Mr. Ayala said. 'The country doesn’t gain anything. I think it loses.'"
--The Slimes (from the OP)

---

You are left to wonder what Washington is cooking up to make Ecuador "lose." Maybe Ayala knows, maybe not. What about his political motives in his criticism of Correa for doing what Ayala admits is the right thing but shouldn't have been done because it creates "conflict." Conflict with whom? The U.S., of course, and its poodle, England. What is his agenda that he would tolerate persecution of a journalist by these governments? Hm?

Finally, I am sick to death of this typical character assassination of Julian Assange:

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"Mr. Assange, who has taken refuge in the embassy since June 19 to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning on allegations that he sexually assaulted two women...". --the Slimes (from the OP)

---

Let's get this straight. Julian Assange is NOT really wanted for questioning in Sweden. He has three times made himself available for questioning on these absurd "sexual assault" charges, and Swedish prosecutors have refused to question him. There are no charges against him. The first prosecutor in this case dropped the case because the charges were so flimsy. That prosecutor was replaced with someone with more political ambition. Talk about "political motives"! What they want is to get Assange INTO CUSTODY--in any way that they can--so they can turn him over to the U.S. to be "buried" in a deep dungeon with Bradley Manning!

The "sexual assault" charges are a mockery of every woman who has ever been genuinely assaulted. And this warrant for Assange is a mockery of justice. He is wanted for the crime of journalism. That is the truth. And, if the New York Slimes had any self-respect left, as journalists, they would not perpetuate this slanderous coupling of Assange's name with "sexual assault." He has NOT been charged with ANY "assault." And he has NOT avoided questioning about the allegations. They were so NOT going to charge him with these flimsy allegations that they told him he could leave Sweden! THEN they chased him with a warrant. THEN. Why? Because they want him in custody" NOT for "questioning" but for extradition to the U.S.

I don't call them the New York Slimes for nothing. This slimebag article is all too typical of what this once great newspaper--the publisher of the Pentagon Papers--has become.
Posted by Peace Patriot | Tue Sep 11, 2012, 01:41 AM (0 replies)

Anything to smear FDR and the "New Deal" at election time in the U.S.--the Associated Pukes

And do notice the colorful and/or iffy language....

"some scholars believe..."

"mysteriously vanished into the heart of American power..."

"The long-held suspicion is that..."

"lend weight to the belief that..."

"Historians" describe the new archive material as "important"...nay, as...

"potentially explosive"!

---------------------------

Bush Jr. and his pals slaughter a hundred thousand innocent people in the "shock and awe" bombing of Baghdad, to steal their oil, torture prisoners for reasons unknown, in violation of the Geneva Conventions, the UN Charter, the U.S. Constitution, the Uniform Code of Military Justice and all manner of laws and civilized norms, out CIA agents and an entire WMD counter-proliferation project--putting U.S. agents and contacts around the world in peril of their lives--"lose" billions of dollars in Iraq, and entirely bust the U.S. economy--not to mention ignoring dire warnings and going on vacation in August 2001--and the Associated Pukes couldn't care less and subsume all this and more into the corporate news "river of forgetfulness"...

...but let FDR lose, overlook or deliberately ignore one coded message in obscure circumstances (Russians marching out, Nazis marching in) on the eve of world war and that is...um..."important" and those ace reporters at AP really got on it, "days before" it was released, speed-dialing their academic contacts to find out if there was any dirt on Roosevelt.

They even quote one of their experts as saying that it is "potentially explosive." I mean, come on. Something that happened in 1940 is "potentially explosive"? "Explosive" in what way? I'll tell you what's explosive. Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld NOT being at the Puke convention is explosive. U.S. taxpayer money developing drones now being sold on the open market is explosive. Drone bombings of "suspected" this and "suspected" that ("suspected insurgents," "suspected terrorists," "suspected drug traffickers," et al) all over the world is explosive. The State Department's "fine" of Blackwater, about two years ago, for "unauthorized" "trainings" of "foreign persons" IN COLOMBIA "for use in Iraq and Afghanistan" is explosive.

FDR "laundering" a critically needed ally, back in 1940, in order to defeat Hitler, is NOT "explosive." It is not even new news.

The more I contemplate this article, the more suspicious do I become--of its timing, of the reporters and academics involved and of the motives of Associated Pukes owners and editors. The article is a very long one--unusual for AP--goes way back into the whole long history of this issue (congressional hearings, Gorbachev admission, the lot) and its point seems to be to associate FDR with Stalin's brutality and tyranny--as if these were FDR's fault--when what FDR was looking at was the consequences of LOSING WW II without Russian help. That is very arguably what would have happened, if the Russians hadn't joined the Allies against Hitler. At the least, tens of thousands more Americans and other allies would have died--rather than millions of Russians--trying to defeat Hitler. Bloody as it was, it could have been a lot bloodier and a lot longer than it was, and we could well have lost the war. To this day, we do not give enough credit to the Russians who fought and died, and suffered so incredibly, to defeat Hitler.

It is also absurd to believe that, had the truth about Katyn been publicly known at the time (that the Russians committed this massacre) that it would have made any difference at all to the fate other Poles or other peoples during WW II and afterward. It would very likely have made no difference at all. Indeed, disclosing Soviet guilt could have turned the course of the war toward a Nazi victory, and it furthermore could EASILY have led to the U.S. nuclear war madmen of the 1950s/early 1960s nuking Russia--wiping Russia and its people off the map--in a preemptive strike, which they so dearly wanted to do (and almost succeeded in forcing JFK to do). The world was a tinderbox at the end of WW II and the last thing in the world that was needed was lighting a match to it! Literally, the last thing in the world.

So, what is the point of this LENGTHY article dissing FDR--from a news organization whose news articles are usually "sound bite" length and most often contain no context and no historical background? All of a sudden they're deep into history and the exigencies of PAST war?

Nope. There is an agenda here, and I think it's ECONOMIC and very election oriented. It is an anti-New Deal article. It says, subliminally, that "liberals" love "communists," especially insane communist tyrants--the same old shit we heard from the McCarthyites of the 1950s, and are hearing ominous echoes of today, and, believe me, it is all about money--looting the social programs of the New Deal, privatizing everything, the rich getting ever richer, and kicking the elderly, the sick, the poor and even workers "off the island."

This article almost REGRETS that it was liberals--New Dealers--WHO WON WW II! But I'll tell you what I think Bush Jr. and his ilk would have done. They would have allied with Hitler to conquer Russia--with the rightwing press--the Associated Pukes of that day--applauding them all the way. (And it would have been the Holocaust that was suppressed!) That I truly believe, if you want to speculate about the past and gainsay decisions of the people who won WW II. It was LIBERALS who won WW II, by NOT being Bushwhacks and stupid, asshole redbaiters and "Tea Partyers."

The U.S. could not have taken on both Hitler and Soviet Russia! It was NOT possible. So Roosevelt had to choose, and it is very clear that he was not happy about that choice, but he had no other. Period. End of story. And, once both sides had nuclear weapons, world war became unthinkable to reasonable human beings and provoking such a war the most unpardonable of crimes--the war crime to end all war crimes, literally.

I am not saying that the truth about Katyn should have been suppressed--then, now, or in between. In an ideal world, there would be no such secrets. But the Associated Pukes is, here, very cynically positing an ideal world in which they are the champions of openness. I've been AP-watching for some time, and nothing could be further from the truth. They are the champions of transglobal corporations, banksters and war profiteers. They are NOT in the business of creating an informed public. Their business is propaganda. They are NOT INTERESTED in Bush Junta secrets or crimes. So, WHY do they give such cache--an unusual in-depth report--to this tiny blip of info on Roosevelt's horrible dilemmas and choices in WW II, which have long been known?

Only one reason: the New Deal. They couldn't care less about U.S. massacres and other war crimes, current era. They couldn't care less about all sorts of grand scale crimes--by the banksters, by the war profiteers, by the rich and the corporate. But, boy, give them a bit of redundant news about FDR and they "stop the presses" to give you an "AP Exclusive"!

It makes you want to puke.

------------------------------

(Link to the full OP source: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/ap-exclusive-memos-show-us-hushed-soviet-crime )
(Link back to this thread: http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014224613 )



Posted by Peace Patriot | Mon Sep 10, 2012, 03:55 PM (1 replies)

The Venezuelan election commission is non-partisan...

...and enforces one of the best election regulation systems in the world, which has been repeatedly monitored and certified by all the major election monitoring groups in the world (the Carter Center, the OAS, the EU, etc.) Opposition parties have been a part of the commission from the beginning and helped formulate, and agreed to, the rules.

Venezuela's election rules include a ban on political ads in the weeks before the vote (to prevent last minute "hit and run" political ads), rules on content aimed at preventing "hit and run" political ads prior to that period, no exit polls released until the official results are in (to prevent false reporting that, say, might be part of a plot to overthrow the real results), no foreign money in political campaigns (which the opposition blatantly violated in the 2004 recall campaign, with USAID money, and got caught) and other "best practices." And the overall voting system is honest and transparent on the face of its details (one of the best, in my study of it) as well as in the opinion of election experts.

So this crybaby stuff by the opposition, when they can't get their "hit piece" onto the public airwaves just under the wire for the ad ban, is absurd, not to mention typical--and the Washington Psst picking it up as a "Chavez is against free speech" headline is also typical and typically loathesome.

There has never been more free speech in Venezuela than there is now and has been over the last decade. There has never been higher voter turnouts nor more active public participation in government and politics. There has never been more diversity of opinion, which has been enhanced, not curtailed, by government efforts to get some fairness on the public airwaves--such as we had here prior to Reagan, during the "Fairness Doctrine" era--and to improve access to the media by the poor majority and excluded groups. That is the truth of the matter.

What the Washington Psst and other corporate news monopolists object to is FAIRNESS. They DON'T WANT free speech for everybody. They want free speech for transglobal corporations and war profiteers. They are control freaks to the max. And their highlighting of this bullshit by the rightwing opposition in Venezuela, and treating it as a "he said/she said" matter rather than a matter of the agreed upon rules, and failing to point out--after so much "Big Lie" propaganda about Chavez--that Chavez has absolutely no power over the National Electoral Commission--is foul play, just like this opposition ad itself is foul play (from the description of it).

What is really going on here? The rightwing opposition in Venezuela is going to lose another election and so they are seeding the corporate media with "talking points" that the reason that they lost is that "Chavez is a dictator," not that the great majority of Venezuelans approve of the Chavez government and, by means of the Chavez government, have voted themselves a "New Deal." THAT's what the rightwing opposition and their corporate media campaign staff and their USAID "trainers" DON'T WANT US TO KNOW. They want us to think that, say, universal free medical care, or good wages and benefits amidst very low unemployment, is only possible by dictatorial decree and are not the rights of a free people freely electing a government that agrees to do their will, in a democratic system where everybody--not just the rich, not just Exxon Mobil & brethren, not just the USAID--gets a say!

A "New Deal" for Venezuelans, or for us, is not thinkable. That's what the Washington Psst and the rest of the lying, dictatorial, monopolist, propagandistic, disinformationist, anti-democratic corporate media want us to believe. 'A New Deal can't happen for you. Don't even think it.'

This article is yet another example of this mind-boggling "Big Lie" campaign, which twists and distorts every bit of news that comes out of Venezuela against the Chavez government, and never ever--EVER!--prints even one--EVEN ONE!--mention of the Chavez government's significant achievements (the REASONS why Venezuelans vote for the Chavez government).

The characteristics of "the Big Lie"--a propaganda technique that Joseph Stalin brought to perfection--are the lie itself then the repetition of the lie over and over and over again--a monotonous, mind-numbing bludgeon that turns the human brain to mush--while suppressing all information that contradicts or questions the lie. THAT is what the corporate media have done to the Chavez government AND to the great majority of Venezuelans (who, when they are mentioned at all--which is almost never--are treated like stupid peasants, rather than like the savvy, politically engaged, activist citizens that they are, who see through the corporate bullshit which remains rampant on Venezuelan TV and keep voting for their "New Deal").

A supreme irony, indeed, that it's the corporate media that have become like Josef Stalin, in their brain-destroying "Big Lie" campaigns (about Chavez, about war, about the banksters, about our mind-bogglingly rigged election system--you name it), while the people of Venezuela and Latin America have created real democracy for themselves, despite the non-stop bad-mouthing of those who would steal their resources and smash their democracies, their free speech and all of their civil and human rights to smithereens (not to mention torturing and murdering them--as in the U.S. client states of Colombia and Honduras today, and all over Latin America in the past).

Many, many ironies. Latin Americans are achieving democracy, at long last, while we, who once could boast of creating it--and of inspiring it and defending it--in the modern world--are fast losing it, along with our own "New Deal." The saddest irony of all.
Posted by Peace Patriot | Sat Sep 1, 2012, 12:56 PM (1 replies)
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