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Member since: Sat Jul 9, 2005, 11:46 PM
Number of posts: 13,806
Home country: Canada
Member since: Sat Jul 9, 2005, 11:46 PM
Number of posts: 13,806
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The scholar speaks about America's past foreign policy blunders and the failures of the mainstream media.
By Dan Falcone and Saul Isaacson / Jacobin May 11, 2015
If you take a look after the nuclear agreement, immediately there's a lot of commentary. The New York Times had a front page, a think piece, from one of their big thinkers, Peter Baker. It says basically in agreement, you can't trust Iran. You know, they destabilize the Middle East, and then he gives a list of reasons - each of them very interesting. But the most interesting is that one of the main crimes of Iran is that they were supporting militias that killed American soldiers.
In other words when we invade and destroy another country, that's stabilizing, and if someone defends themselves that is destabilizing. That shows up in popular culture like this horrible film American Sniper. Take a look at it. The memoir is worse than the film, but it comes out that the first kill, the one he's really proud of, is a woman and a child who are holding a grenade when their town is being attacked by American marines.
And they are savages, monsters, we hate them, they have to be murdered, and everybody's applauding. I mean, even the New York Times arts pages was talking about what a wonderful film it was. It's just mind-boggling.
Full article: http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/noam-chomsky-we-caused-chaos-middle-east?akid=13094.44541.DM2tTU&rd=1&src=newsletter1036189&t=3
Please note, I do not discount Canada's participation in any of this. We're just as much to blame in many cases.
Posted by polly7 | Tue May 12, 2015, 05:23 PM (3 replies)
Posted 7 May 2015 10:29 GMT
In an extraordinary sight only one day after police violently dispersed demonstrators in Macedonia with water cannons, smoke bombs and batons, a group of women out to protest formed a human shield around officers to protect them from provocateurs throwing glass bottles.
Posted by polly7 | Sun May 10, 2015, 02:31 PM (0 replies)
May 4, 2015 by Amanda Froelich
Legendary music icon Neil Young might be best known for his tracks ‘Heart of Gold’ and ‘Rockin In The Free World,’ but he is soon to gain even more attention from his latest record set for release. In collaboration with the Willie Nelson sons, Young has recently announced the debut of a new album called ‘The Monsanto Years’.
As you might have guessed, the album is made up of songs criticizing food industry giant Monsanto, which Neil has spoken out against for years. On June 16 the record will be released, with Young and Promise of the Real touring to support it.
Some of the track titles include “Seeds,” “Too Big to Fail,” “Monsanto Years,” and “Rock Starbucks.” This is one activist not afraid to sing his mind.
I didn't realize he was recording this with Willie Nelson's sons. Nice!
Posted by polly7 | Sun May 10, 2015, 02:00 PM (4 replies)
Prepare yourself for "superweeds."
By Mary Ellen Kustin, Soren Rundquist / Environmental Working Group May 9, 2015
Full article: http://www.alternet.org/environment/monsanto-threatening-safety-children-its-toxic-weed-killers?akid=13089.44541.ba3q1s&rd=1&src=newsletter1036111&t=5
Posted by polly7 | Sun May 10, 2015, 01:08 PM (1 replies)
By Hamza Hamouchene
Source: Middle East Eye
May 10, 2015
In the last few weeks, the EU neighbourhood and the Western foreign policies alongside the ongoing economic domination of the African continent have yet again shown their deadly consequences in the immigration tragedy in the Mediterranean Sea.
Thousands of people, mainly from Africa and Syria, risk their lives every year crossing the sea in fragile boats to flee war-torn areas, poverty, persecution and misery in order to reach the shores of Europe for a better and safer life. Sadly a significant number of them perish in the attempts to do so or end up in humiliating camps and prisons in southern European countries only to be deported and returned and see their dreams shattered.
What distinguishes this year’s tragedy from the previous ones is the sheer scale of it as the death toll of drowning this year now stands at over 1,500 – 50 times more than at the same point in 2014. This can be explained mainly by the ongoing conflicts in Syria, Libya and Mali as well as the inhumane decision by several European Union (EU) governments to refuse funding to the Italian-run rescue operation Mare Nostrum, preferring thus to let migrants die, something that was claimed would act as a deterrent for unwanted people who are trying to reach fortress Europe.
Harga in a way represents the pursuit of a future that came to a dead-end in the home-country. It is a means to overcome the restrictions on freedom of movement, precariousness of employment and the marginalisation by clientelist networks – in a nutshell everything that makes life unsustainable, in order to realise a life project that we think is impossible to achieve in Algeria given present conditions. One inhabitant of a marginalised village, Sidi Salem in Annaba, eastern Algeria, declared to his Harrag brother: “I lost the keys of my future in a cemetery in Algeria called Sidi Salem.”
Full article: https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/the-wretched-of-the-sea-an-algerian-perspective/
Algeria, an Immense Bazaar: The Politics and Economic Consequences of Infitah
With the global neoliberal wave gaining momentum in the 80s, sweeping away the Soviet Union and the Eastern European bloc, eventually spreading to the whole world from Argentina to Poland and not sparing China in the way, and with the plummeting of oil revenues, the Algerian national development project was abandoned by the Chadli clique. It was dismantled as a process of deindustrialization and carried out to give way to neoliberal policies and the submission to the dictates of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and its structural adjustment programs (1992-1993, 1994-1999). This had heavy consequences on the population: job losses (more than 500,000 in a few years), decrease of purchasing power, cuts to public spending, increasing precariousness of salaried workers, opening up of foreign trade, and the privatization of public companies. Algeria paid around ninety billion dollars in debt service between 1990 and 2004, and paid its debt several times. . . in fact, seven times. This does not constitute a necessary imperative, but a choice of a regime that abdicated to Western hegemony. Instead of reindustrializing the country and investing in Algerian youths who risk their lives to reach the northern shores of the Mediterranean in order to escape the despair of being marginalized and relegated to being Hittistes, the Algerian authorities offered financial support to the IMF, a neo-colonial tool of plunder that crippled the economy.
The dignitaries of the new neoliberal religion declared that everything was for sale and opened the way for privatizations. This allowed an explosion of import activity, which pronounced a death sentence on the productive economy. Rachid Tlemçani notes that by 1997, 7100 companies (5500 private) controlled the non-hydrocarbon foreign trade, the majority of which were specialized in import activities resulting in the transformation of the Algerian market into an immense bazaar for foreign goods with its reservoir of corruption.
Under President Bouteflika, from 1999, this neoliberal logic of undermining national production while promoting an import-import economy (imports increased from 9.3 billion dollars in 2000 to 27.6 billion in 2007, and 47.25 billion by 2011) was pushed even further, aiming for a complete integration into the global economy. This is evidenced by the dismantling of all custom barriers, the adherence to the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the Greater Arab Free Trade Area (GAFTA), and the signature of an association agreement with the European Union.
It is in the name of the sacrosanct principles of the neoliberal dogma that industrial investment halted for thirty years. It is because of their profiteering disciples that industrial figures mutated into traders-importers. It is also in their name that the share of industry in GDP went down from twenty-six percent in 1985 to about five percent in 2009. The successive governments made all the necessary arrangements for the foreign investors to rush into Algeria.
Full article: http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/9851/algeria-an-immense-bazaar_the-politics-and-economi
Posted by polly7 | Sun May 10, 2015, 10:37 AM (2 replies)
money from the bottom to the top that they are, with no protections for the environment, health, jobs or anything else, because corporations trump all and will be able to (as NAFTA provides the same already) sue any gov't (it's taxpayers) that opposes any corporate decision. Corrupt or very poor gov'ts will have no chance against them, so of course the poorest of the poor will suffer even further. You really haven't read the opposition from around the world to all of this?
TPP Trade Deal Will Be Devastating for Access to Affordable Medicines
By Doctors Without borders
#noTTIP Train to transport 100 UK activists to confront trade negotiations in Brussels
“It’s unheard of to see so many people travelling to Brussels to lobby their MEPs like this, and that’s testament to just how hugely controversial and unpopular TTIP has become. David Cameron waxes lyrical about national sovereignty, but in pushing for this deal he is wilfully handing sovereignty to big business. The deal is not really about trade, it’s about entrenching the position of the one percent. It should be abandoned.”
Scramble to Conclude Suspicious EU-US Trade Deal
UK industry is in intensive care. Should we throw open the door and allow America’s big business battalions to muscle in under cover of a trade treaty?
New levels of TTIP rejection revealed by Commission’s public consultation
Tuesday, 13 January, 2015
The extent of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership’s (TTIP) unpopularity across Europe was exposed today as the European Commission published the results of its largest public consultation in history. The results of the consultation, launched last year, were scheduled to be published in late 2014, but were delayed following an unprecedented number of largely negative responses...........
Those are just a few examples ............ there are hundreds.
By George Monbiot
Source: The Guardian
January 15, 2015
If a government proposes to abandon one of the fundamental principles of justice, there had better be a powerful reason. Equality before the law is not ditched lightly. Surely? Well, read this and judge for yourself. The UK government, like that of the US and 13 other EU members, wants to set up a separate judicial system, exclusively for the use of corporations. While the rest of us must take our chances in the courts, corporations across the EU and US will be allowed to sue governments before a tribunal of corporate lawyers. They will be able to challenge the laws they don’t like, and seek massive compensation if these are deemed to affect their “future anticipated profits”.
I’m talking about the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and its provisions for “investor-state dispute settlement”. If this sounds incomprehensible, that’s mission accomplished: public understanding is lethal to this attempted corporate coup.
The TTIP is widely described as a trade agreement. But while in the past trade agreements sought to address protectionism, now they seek to address protection. In other words, once they promoted free trade by removing trade taxes (tariffs); now they promote the interests of transnational capital by downgrading the defence of human health, the natural world, labour rights, and the poor and vulnerable from predatory corporate practices.
So keep marching, keep signing, keep joining the campaigns that have come together under the Stop TTIP banner. In an age of ecocide, food banks and financial collapse, do we need more protection from predatory corporate practices, or less? This is a reckless, unjustified destruction of our rights. We can defeat it.
Full article: https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/trade-secrets/
Wednesday, December 31, 2014
by Common Dreams
The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a disastrous trade agreement designed to protect the interests of the largest multi-national corporations at the expense of workers, consumers, the environment and the foundations of American democracy. It will also negatively impact some of the poorest people in the world.
Full article: http://www.commondreams.org/views/2014/12/31/ten-reasons-why-tpp-must-be-defeated
History Handbook: The Passion for Free Markets
By Noam Chomsky
April 25, 2015
The “American passion for free trade” entails that the U.S. government may violate trade agreements at will. No problem arises when communications, finance, and food supplies are taken over by foreign (mainly U.S.) corporations. Matters are different, however, when trade agreements and international law interfere with the projects of the powerful. Similar troublemaking beyond the hemisphere has also been no slight problem, and continues to spread “dangerous” ideas among people who “are demanding a decent living.
NAFTA's Chapter 11 Makes Canada Most-Sued Country Under Free Trade Tribunals
Canada is the most-sued country under the North American Free Trade Agreement and a majority of the disputes involve investors challenging the country’s environmental laws, according to a new study.
“Thanks to NAFTA chapter 11, Canada has now been sued more times through investor-state dispute settlement than any other developed country in the world,” said Scott Sinclair, who authored the study.
There are currently eight cases against the Canadian government asking for a total of $6 billion in damages. All of them were brought by U.S. companies.
The study notes that although NAFTA proponents claimed that ISDS was needed to address concerns about corruption in the Mexican court system, most investor-state challenges involve public policy and regulatory matters. Sixty three per cent of claims against Canada involve challenges to environmental protection or resource management measures.
Posted by polly7 | Sun May 10, 2015, 09:41 AM (0 replies)
by Walter C. Uhler / May 9th, 2015
V-E Day, or Victory in Europe Day, is celebrated every May 8th in Western Europe and the United States, but is celebrated as Victory Day every May 9th in Russia. Why? Because the Soviet Union’s representative had no authority to sign the German document of surrender at Reims, France, on 7 May 1945, but also because, on 8 May, Soviet forces were still shelling German units in Czechoslovakia that had refused to surrender. Thus, when the surrender ceremony was repeated in Berlin on 8 May, it already was 9 May in the Soviet Union.
Full article: http://dissidentvoice.org/2015/05/seventy-years-after-the-great-patriotic-war/#more-58310
Posted by polly7 | Sat May 9, 2015, 01:59 PM (7 replies)
By Raul Zelik
Source: The Bullet
May 8, 2015
(Translation by Eric Canepa)
Full article: https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/podemos-and-the-democratic-revolution-in-spain/
Posted by polly7 | Fri May 8, 2015, 01:53 PM (0 replies)
By Middle East Monitor
Source: Middle East Monitor
May 8, 2015
An Israeli soldier said that he and his colleagues bombed civilian targets in the Gaza Strip during last year’s war on the enclave for entertainment.
During an interview with French Le Monde newspaper in Jerusalem yesterday, the soldier who identified himself as Arieh, 20, said: “I was called to service early on July 2014 and was deployed to the Gaza Strip but until that time the operation was not announced yet. Only some soldiers speculated that there will be war, but later our commander told us to imagine a 200 metre radius and to immediately shoot anything moving inside this circle.”
“We bombed civilian targets for entertainment,” he said, adding that “one day at about 8am we went to the Al-Bureij; a highly dense residential area in central Gaza, and the commander told us to select a random target and shoot it, at the time we did not see any Hamas fighters, no one shot at us, but the commander told us jokingly: ‘We have to send Bureij a morning greeting from the Israeli army’.”
Arieh is one of about 60 Israeli soldiers who agreed to testify in a report prepared by Israeli human rights organisation Breaking the Silence.
The 237-page report concluded that the Israeli army left “unprecedented harm” among Palestinian civilians during the war through random firing and the application of loose rules of engagement
Full article: https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/israeli-soldier-we-bombed-civilian-targets-in-gaza-for-entertainment/
Posted by polly7 | Fri May 8, 2015, 01:44 PM (12 replies)
By Ray McGovern
April 25, 2015
The controversy over alleged Russian “aggression” in Ukraine is already raining on the Kremlin parade with which Russia will mark the 70th anniversary of the Allies’ victory over Adolf Hitler and the Nazis on May 9. U.S. President Barack Obama set the tone by turning down the Kremlin’s invitation to take part in the celebration, and allies in Western Europe have been equally uncouth in saying No.
Full article: https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/ukraine-coup-couth-and-consequences/
Posted by polly7 | Fri May 8, 2015, 01:39 PM (0 replies)