• All governments lie, but disaster lies in wait for countries whose officials smoke the same hashish they give out.

  • I.F. Stone

zaterdag 2 juni 2007

Het Neoliberale Geloof 43

'US debt could trigger dollar collapse, UN warns
Submitted by Desha

The United States dollar is facing imminent collapse in the face of an unsustainable debt, the United Nations warned today.

United States debt, which had now deepened to well over $3 trillion, might turn out to be unsustainable in the rest of 2007 or next, putting further downward pressure on the United States dollar, Rob Vos, the Director of the Development Policy and Analysis Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), told correspondents at a Headquarters press conference.
He pointed out that since its peak in 2002, the dollar had depreciated vis-à-vis the major currencies by some 35 per cent and by 25 per cent against a broader range of other currencies.
Vos made these comments at the launch of the 2007 World Economic Situation and Prospects report midyear update.
With that increased debt the risk of a sharp depreciation of the dollar continued, he warned. If countries willing to invest in United States dollar assets expected further depreciation, they might be less willing to hold dollar assets, triggering a much sharper fall in the United States dollar. The risk of disorderly adjustment and the steep fall of the dollar existed. The policy challenge was how to prevent a hard landing of the United States dollar and forge a benign adjustment of the global imbalance.
In terms of the United States housing sector, he noted that a recession in the housing sector had continued in 2007, with a slowdown in activity and a large number of unsold homes. While house prices had not fallen, that might happen in the months and years to come if the recession continued as expected. A decline in prices would affect the domestic market, particularly household consumption in the United States, resulting in the risk of a serious recession in its economy, slowing growth from 2.1 per cent to 0.5 per cent in 2007 and 2008. That would then significantly slow the world economy and transmit the recession into the rest of the world.'

Lees verder: http://pressesc.com/01180629622_dollar_falls

Oorlog

Restant van eeen Libanese man? vrouw? Kind? Slachtoffer van een Israelisch bombardement.

Ik kreeg vanochtend deze reactie:

Anoniem heeft een nieuwe reactie op uw bericht "Sven Lindqvist 2" achtergelaten:

Zo raakte ik onlangs verzeild in een discussie waarin mensen bepleitten dat de Westerse technologie toch wel zo geavanceerd is dat deze altijd beter is dan 'primitieve' manieren van oorlogvoeren, als ontvoeren, onthoofden of jezelf ergens opblazen. Toen ik aantoonde dat dat larie was, aangezien 'precisiebombardementen' vanuit Apaches e.d. vele keren meer burgerslachtoffers maken, dat bombardementen ook mensen letterlijk onthoofden, en dat gevangenen maken en laten verdwijnen zonder vorm van proces ook 'ontvoeren' is, kreeg ik hele boze reacties. Voor je het weet zit je dan op een soort Westerse geloofsmeter ergens tussen 'ongenuanceerd' en 'terrorist'.Ik heb nooit een oorlog meegemaakt, ik weet niet wat voor hel dat werkelijk is. Wel ben ik met het idee van oorlog opgegroeid. Bijvoorbeeld mijn grootmoeder heeft tot aan haar dood in '92 'de moffen' gehaat. Thuis in de boekenkast stonden boeken over de holocaust, maar ook de Eerste Wereldoorlog, en kwamen daar later boeken over Vietnam bij.Ik denk niet dat mijn inlevingsvermogen uniek groot is, maar wanneer ik lees, of foto's en video's zie (die de reguliere pers niet toont), dan kan ik me enigzins voorstellen hoe oorlog moet zijn voor de mensen die er, soms generaties lang, in moeten leven. En wanneer je meemaakt wat de dood van een familielid door een ongeluk al teweeg brengt, wat gebeurt er met iemands leven en denkbeelden wanneer deze vermoord wordt door een bezetter...En dan word ik altijd heel erg boos wanneer iemand luchtigjes zit te beweren dat bepaalde groepen of volkeren, zowel in onze samenleving als in de wereld, gewoon niet deugen en hun lijden daarom stukken minder erg is dan het onze. Zelfs hoor je zogenaamd culturele argumenten over dat 'die mensen' anders met de dood omgaan dan wij. Alsof ze het hebben over onkruid of lastige insekten. Dit naast de bekende dooddoeners als "tja, in oorlog vallen nu eenmaal slachtoffers".Grote schuldigen achter deze propaganda zijn de media en de politiek in Den Haag. In de Tweede Kamer durft bijvoorbeeld niemand naar voren te brengen dat we Israël sancties moeten opleggen voor grotere misdaden dan die van Saddam Hoessein. Nee, we blijven zaken doen met Israël, zelfs bouwen we mee aan de illegale afscheidingsmuur die door het Internationaal Gerechtshof is veroordeeld omdat deze tegen het Volkenrecht is. Zet Verhagen eens tegen die muur aan, en zijn pleidooi voor vrijheid brengen en democratie afdwingen past opeens naadloos in de ideologie van Het Land van Ooit.Is onze Westerse zogenaamd Verlichte beschaving nu echt ontwikkeld sinds de middeleeuwen? Onze technologie wel, maar verder handelen we nog volgens dezelfde principes. We hebben met mes en vork leren eten en onze bips leren afvegen, maar hoe we aan dat eten komen is nog precies hetzelfde. Onze cultuur was en is er een van moord en plundering, en of je dat nu eigenhandig uitvoert of landen assisteert die dat doen - iemand die oorlogsmisdadigers assisteert is ook een oorlogsmisdadiger. Voor de vorm veroordelen we zo af en toe een individu als Van Anraat, of staan we te juichen rond het schavot van een dictator 'gone bad', om nog formeel een zweem van internationaal recht en rechtvaardigheid op te houden. Maar dat is louter poppenkast. Geplaatst door Anoniem op stan op 10:49 AM

vrijdag 1 juni 2007

De Israelische Terreur 212

Als u wilt dat een Israelische soldaat niet op Palestijnse mannen, vrouwen en kinderen schiet, maar een katje aait, druk dan even op deze link: http://www.40jaarbezetting.nl/index.php?page=1
Ik zie u dan.

Irak 212


'Oops—Forget You Ever Saw Pix of the Baghdad Embassy.
A couple of days ago, we posted an image of the beach volleyball court inside the monster U.S. embassy complex under construction in Baghdad. The rendering came from the site of the architecture firm that designed it. But now it's pulled the images under pressure from the State Department, which claimed they were a security risk. Despite the warning, a spokesman for the architecture firm gave the bad guys even more ideas by revealing that "Google Earth could give you a better snapshot of what the site looks like on the ground." So I think it's still safe to show you this image of a Marine guard and a tiny pixelated diplomat.
Meanwhile, the embassy project has other problems—such as using coerced labor to get the job done. As Iraqslogger reports, American managers have complained that the builder, First Kuwaiti General Trading and Contracting, has mistreated the thousands of South Asian, Filipino, and other foreign laborers brought in to construct the complex. Some of the allegations:
[C]onstruction crews lived in crowded quarters; ate sub-standard food; and had little medical care. When drinking water was scarce in the blistering heat, coolers were filled on the banks of the Tigris, a river rife with waterborne disease, sewage and sometimes floating bodies, they said. Others questioned why First Kuwaiti held the passports of workers. Was it to keep them from escaping? Some laborers had turned up “missing” with little investigation. Another American said laborers told him they were been misled in their job location. When recruited, they were unaware they were heading for war-torn Iraq.
As one American supervisor explained, “Every US labor law was broken.... I’ve never seen a project more fucked up.”

The Empire 255

Mother Jones bericht:
'Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee
HBO Films. 212 minutes.
Exterminate Them: The California Story

Eyapaha Institute. 82 minutes.

Read Dee Brown's Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee and you will feel palpably that your ancestors brutally murdered Indians so you could live on that happy little plot of land where you sit reading. Don't expect it to feel good. In fact, it feels so bad that Americans have repressed, suppressed, and finessed the truth about our nation's founding for more than 200 years. It's hard to retrieve a truth so manhandled even when you want to: Native American History Month, which is this May, comes and goes each year with none of the educational earnestness of Black History Month.
When it comes to making movies about Native Americans, even solid filmmakers can look like drama teachers putting on a Thanksgiving play. HBO has fallen into this cultural trap with director Yves Simoneau's eponymous docudrama based on Dee Brown's book, which premiered May 27. The film focuses on the struggles of the Sioux, from the Oglala destruction of General Custer's forces at Little Big Horn to the massacre of 300 unarmed Lakota at Wounded Knee—the butchery that effectively ended Native American resistance.
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee introduces a range of characters, unsettling the simple innocent/guilty pairing that often stands in for intelligent discussion of Native American history. Senator Henry Dawes's character appears genuine in his desire to "civilize" and protect the Indians—insofar as his efforts do not hinder whites' settlement of the land. The Sioux protagonist, Dr. Charles Eastman, is initially repelled by his father's belief that "The Earth belongs to the white man; there is no future outside his world." But the white world treats Eastman well, lavishing him with scholarships and awards, and he becomes the native spokesman for Senator Dawes' plan to set the nomadic Sioux up as small farmers. But when Eastman takes his Harvard medical training back to the Sioux reservation, he has second thoughts. He writes to Dawes, "Measles, influenza, and whooping cough have ascended from hell all at once…Of equal consequence is the epidemic of hopelessness that has overtaken the reservation." Eastman ultimately rebels against Dawes's push for assimilation at the cost of his newfound identity as an assimilated Indian, but he remains happily married to a white woman who supports the native cause.'


De Israelische Terreur 211



'Friends,
On Sunday, June 10th, people from around the country will gather in Washington, DC, to protest 40 years of Israel's illegal military occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip. The economic, military and political support from Washington has made it possible for this brutal occupation to continue. Thousands will be in the nation's capital to call on Congress to set a new direction for U.S. policy in the region.
This mobilization is taking place as the crisis in Gaza gets worse: 46% of the population is hungry, and unemployment has grown from 30% in 2000 to 71% in 2007, while 80,000 security personnel and civil servants have not been paid for months. The internal divisions in Gaza are fanned by U.S. policies, which undermine the unity government elected by the Palestinian people. At the same time, there is an extremely serious situation in Lebanon as, according to the Associated Press, "The Nahr el-Bared Palestinian refugee camp is ringed by hundreds of soldiers, backed by artillery and tanks, in place to storm the camp and prevent militants from fleeing." It is estimated that 1/2 of the 30,000 Palestinians in this camp have fled, leaving 15,000 still facing this danger.
United for Peace and Justice and the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation are the co-sponsors of this timely effort. War Times/Tiempo de Guerras is an enthusiastic endorser. For full information go to http://www.endtheoccupation.org

'ISRAELISCHE LEGER VERNIELT PALESTIJNSE MEDIA INFRASTRUCTUURISRAELISCH LEGER SLAAT PALESTIJNSE MINISTER BARGHOUTI IN ELKAAR
Terwijl Israelische bombardementen op de bevolking van de Gazastrook binnen enkele dagen 36 doden maken, zgn als vergelding voor Palestijnse raketaanvallen, gaat ook de brutale bezettingspolitiek op de Westelijke Jordaanoever `gewoon' door.Vroeg in de morgen op 21 mei heeft het Israelische leger 5 TV- en radio-stations op de Westelijke Jordaanoever aangevallen. Om 2 uur vielen Israelische soldaten de kantoren van 7 particuliere media stations aan en namen computers, uitzendapparatuur, archieven en dossiers mee. De TV stations van Afaq, Nablous, Gamma, Assia en Sana, evenals 2 radiostations zijn nu effectief gesloten. Volgens Minister van Informatie de heer Mustafa Barghouti opereerden de media-stations geheel binnen het kader van de wet. Ook bereikte ons vandaag het nieuws over Israel's landconfiscatie in het district Bethlehem. Israel wil daar nl. een nieuw segment van de muur aanleggen en zijn illegale nederzetting Efrata uitbreiden, en meent hiertoe Palestijns land te mogen roven. Tijdens een geweldloze betoging tegen de onteigening van 4000 dunum Palestijns land, en de verwoesting van de abrikozen- en dadelboomgaard van een boer bij het dorpje Artas in dit district, zijn 50 Israelische soldaten met betogers op de vuist gegaan. Daarbij is o.a. de minister van informatie Mustafa Barghouti in elkaar geslagen. Het Nederlands Palestina Komitee en het Comité Stop de Oorlog spreken hierbij hun veroordeling uit voor de Israelische luchtaanvallen op Gaza en de schandelijke aanval op ongewapende demonstranten en minister Mustafa Barghouti bij het dorpje Artas en het district Bethlehem.
Nederlands Palestina Komitee'

Sven Lindqvist 2





De bovenste tekening is onjuist, de onderste is als metafoor wel juist. In de bovenste tekening is de moderne blanke mens ongewapend, terwijl zijn twee voorgangers wel bewapend zijn. Dat is dus onjuist. De moderne blanke zou juist met een machinegeweer moeten zijn uitgerust. Dat we ons in toenemense mate als irrationele barbaren gedragen zoals op de onderste tekening wordt uitgebeeld lijkt me wel juist.

Vanochtend stelde ik de volgende vraag op mijn weblog: Waar is toch die overtuiging op gebaseerd dat het Westen de rest van de wereld mag dicteren hoe te leven?

Een aanzet tot een antwoord las ik vanmiddag in het nieuwe boek van de Zweedse journalist Sven Lindqvist Een reis door niemandsland. Hoe de Aboriginals Australie verloren. Over de geemigreerde of verbannen Europeanen die de Aboriginals in Australie handmatig uitmoordden, schreef hij: De meeste blanken waren ervan overtuigd dat de mensen die vermoord waren toch tot een lager ras behoorden, dat tot de ondergang gedoemd was. Hierbij konden ze zich beroepen op de indertijd hoogste autoriteit op het gebied van de biologie: Charles Darwin. Hij beweert in de hoofdstukken 5 en 6 van The Descent of Man (1871) dat de uitroeiing van inheemse volken een natuurlijk evolutionair proces is. Diersoorten hebben elkaar altijd uitgemoord, wilde volken hebben elkaar altijd uitgeroeid, en nu er geciviliseerde volkeren zijn zullen de wilde volken voorgoed worden uitgeroeid: 'Overal waar de geciviliseerde naties met barbaren in contact komen zal de strijd van korte duur zijn, behalve daar waar een dodelijk klimaat het inheemse ras bijstaat.' Maar zelfs daar kan de inheemse bevolking zich niet zeker voelen van haar zaak: 'In een toekomst, die gerekend in eeuwen niet eens zo erg ver weg is, zullen de geciviliseerde rassen vrijwel zeker overal ter wereld de wilde rassen uitroeien en vervangen. Darwin was hier persoonlijk getuige van geweest - in Argentinie, Tasmanie, Australie - en hij keerde zich hier fel tegen. Maar een onderdeel van zijn ontwikkelingsleer was ook dat men de uitroeiing van inheemse volken niet langer als een misdrijf moest beschouwen maar veeleer als het onvermijdelijke gevolg van natuurlijke processen en zelfs als een voorwaarde voor verdere vooruitgang. Na Darwin was uitroeiing iets waar je je schouders over kon ophalen. Mensen die hier met afschuw op reageerden gaven alleen maar blij van hun ongeschooldheid.

Hoeveel is er sindsdien niet vernietigd uit naam van de Vooruitgang. Het knappe van de boeken van Lindqvist is dat ze onder andere haarscherp aantonen dat de joodse holocaust in de negentiende eeuw omstandig voorbereid werd op wat heette 'primitieve volkeren' in wat nu de Derde Wereld wordt genoemd. In dat licht gezien was de joodse holocaust niet onverklaarbaar of ondenkbaar. Het was slechts een kwestie van wachten voordat de blanke Europeaan een groep in hun nabije omgeving uitkoos om alle schuld te geven van hun eigen onvermogen. Een goedgeplande jarenlange hetze via de massamedia waarbij de ander wordt ontmenselijkt en ieder volk is na verloop van tijd rotsvast ervan overtuigd dat de ander inferieur is. Vroeger kregen de joden die rol toebedeeld in het christelijke westen dat zich superieur aan al het andere leven beschouwde. Met desastreuze gevolgen zoals we weten. Het enige verschil met toen is dat nu een ander semitisch volk, de arabieren, wordt gestigmatiseerd als het grote kwaad. De survival of the fittest rechtvaardigde de genocide en doet dat in feite nog steeds. Wij zijn de goeden, de beschaafden, zij zijn de slechten, de barbaren.

Wat dat betreft is de mens nog even onbeschaafd als toen hij zijn eerste stappen deed als rechtoplopende primaat, de homo erectus. Technologisch is er sprake van vooruitgang, maar moreel natuurlijk niet. De mens is nog even bloeddorstig en angstig als drie miljoen jaar geleden. De blanke westerling heeft alleen veel meer praatjes gekregen en een veel grotere borstkast, zo te horen aan het borstgeroffel over onze eigen voortreffelijkheid. Ondertussen gaat de strijd om te overleven gewoon verder, de sterkste wint, zoals Darwin aantoonde. Alleen is de vraag nu: wie is straks de sterkste? Degene die het best kan moorden? Of juist niet?

Irak 211

'MEDIA ALERT: ILLEGAL, IMMORAL, UNWINNABLE - A BRITISH ARMY OFFICER REPLIES TO MARK URBAN

Yesterday, in response to our latest Media Alert, 'Newsnight Diplomatic Editor Mark Urban Responds,' we received a further reply from Mark Urban. Urban argued that our analysis "is put together by you sitting at home, sifting current events through a dense filter of ideology". In particular, he lampooned our view of the US motivation in Iraq:"I do however think that your desire to force all of the elements in a woefully complex situation into a simple proposition such as, 'America's real objective is to smother all opposition so they can pinch the oil', to be a sorry form of fundamentalism." (Email to Media Lens, May 31, 2007)We hope to discuss Urban's reply in more detail later (readers can see his email here: http://www.medialens.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=8615#8615). Meanwhile, we have also received a copy of an important and courageous email sent to Urban by a serving British Army officer. The officer has given us permission to publish his message, which reveals much that is normally hidden about the true military view of the Iraq war. He has asked to remain anonymous. We have invited Mark Urban to respond to the email that follows:Dear Mr Urban,I am a serving British Army officer with operational experience in a number of theatres. I am concerned regarding the effect of your recent reports from Baghdad. I have been forwarded the correspondence between yourself and David Edwards of medialens.org, and would like to highlight that it is not merely medialens users, who are concerned about embedded coverage with the US Army. The intentions and continuing effects of the US-led invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq have been questioned by too few people in the mainstream media and political parties, primarily only the Guardian and Independent, and the Liberal Democrats, respectively.There is a widespread, and well-sourced, belief based on both experience and evidence, in both the British military and academia, that the US is not "just in Iraq to keep the peace, regardless of what the troops on the ground believe. It is in Iraq to establish a client state amenable to the requirements of US realpolitik in a key, oil-rich region. To doubt this is to be ignorant of the motives that have guided US foreign policy in the post-war period* and a mountain of evidence since 2003." (quote from medialens)That the invasion was 'illegal, immoral and unwinnable', and the 'greatest foreign policy blunder since Suez' - to paraphrase the Liberal Democrats - is the overwhelming feeling of many of my peers, and they speak of loathsome six-month tours, during which they led patrols with dread and fear, reluctantly providing target practice for insurgents, senselessly haemorrhaging casualties, and squandering soldiers' lives, as part of Bush's vain attempt to delay the inevitable Anglo-US rout until after the next US election. Given a free choice most of us would never have invaded Iraq, and certainly would have withdrawn long ago. Hopefully, Tony Blairs's handover to Gordon Brown will herald a change of policy, and rapid withdrawal, but skewed pro-US coverage inhibits proper public debate, and is deeply unhealthy; lethally-so to many of us deployed to Iraq. The [inadvertent] dangers of bias of embedded journalism are well known and there is a risk that the 'official line' can be conflated with evidence and facts. Jon Snow graphically demonstrated the effect of this during the initial invasion of Iraq in his programme The True Face of War**. I am conscious that reporting independently, outside of the 'green zone' in Iraq is nigh on impossible, but I would merely request that the 'official line/White House propaganda' be handled with an appropriate degree of scepticism, and be caveated accordingly. Thank you for your time,'
Over het Irak en Afghanistan-standpunt van Laura Starink, chef van M, het magazine van NRC/Handelsblad, heb ik verder niet meer gehoord nadat ik haar een aantal vragen daarover had gesteld. In het Verenigd Koninkrijk is er wel sprake van een professionele uitwisseling van gedachten, zoals u ondermeer hierboven kan lezen.

God is Rood

Zie: http://www.robert-fisk.com/pictures_civilian_casualities.htm



GIFTS WITH LOVE FROM AMERICA TO THE TRAGIC AND DEFENCELESS PEOPLE OF AFGHANISTAN DURING THE MUSLIM MONTH OF RAMADAN (NOV - DEC 2001). MORE HAS BEEN PROMISED. TOTAL WEIGHT DELIVERED SO FAR APPX. 55,000 TONNES. TOTAL COST $60 BILLION. WELL DONE AMERICA!

De Indiaan Vine Deloria Jr. in God is Red:

De specifieke geest van elk continent, elke vallei, de harde bergen, de vredige meren, alle roepen om verlost te worden van de voortdurende last van exploitatie. Wie zal vrede vinden met het land? De toekomst van de mensheid ligt te wachten voor hen die in staat zijn om hun leven te begrijpen en hun verantwoordelijkheid op zich te nemen voor alle levende dingen. Wie zal luisteren naar de bomen, de dieren en de vogels, de stemmen van de plaatsen van het land? Wanneer de lang vergeten volkeren van de verschillende continenten opstaan en hun oude erfdeel beginnen op te eisen, zullen ze de betekenis van het land van hun voorouders ontdekken. Dan zullen de indringers van het Noordamerikaanse continent eindelijk ontdekken, dat voor dit land God rood is.
Waar is toch die overtuiging op gebaseerd dat het Westen de rest van de wereld mag dicteren hoe te leven?

donderdag 31 mei 2007

The Empire 254

'After more than a year of reporting and research, combing through thousands of foreign lobbying records and haggling with government officials over Freedom of Information Act requests, we have published one of the most comprehensive resources on U.S. military aid and assistance in the post-9/11 era. "Collateral Damage" couples the reporting of 10 of the world's leading investigative journalists on four continents with a powerful database combining U.S. military assistance, foreign lobbying expenditures, and human rights abuses into a single, easily accessible toolkit.
Collateral DamageU.S. hands out vast sums of money to combat terrorism while ignoring human rights records; lobbying key to funding flowsWASHINGTON, May 22, 2007 — Five years after the September 11, 2001 attacks, the influence of foreign lobbying on the U.S. government, as well as a shortsighted emphasis on counterterrorism objectives over broader human rights concerns, have generated staggering costs to the U.S. and its allies in money spent and political capital burned. >>

A Lobbying Bonanza
Indonesia hired well-connected firms to restore U.S. funding cut off after 1991 massacre

WASHINGTON, May 31, 2007 — A long string of human rights abuses had put Indonesia in a deep hole with the United States, but then the September 11 terrorists struck. Suddenly the hole got shallower. >>

Billions in Aid, With No Accountability
Pakistan receives the most post-9/11 U.S. military funding, yet has failed to ferret out al Qaeda, Taliban leaders

WASHINGTON, May 31, 2007 — The runaway winner of the post-9/11 race for new U.S. military aid dollars is Pakistan, but where did the money go? Human rights activists, critics of the Pakistani government and members of Congress all want to know, but most of the money — totaling in the billions — came through a Defense Department program subject to virtually no congressional oversight. >>

Sustaining an Unpopular Regime
In the Philippines, U.S. aid has helped bolster a government whose military is tied to extrajudicial killings

WASHINGTON, May 31, 2007 — A huge post-9/11 increase in U.S. military aid to the Philippines has helped counterterrorism efforts, but critics say there have been major downsides for a nation that's routinely criticized for human rights abuses. Among the accusations is that the strengthened Philippine military persecuted and killed scores of political activists. >>

An Alliance Gone Bad
Thai government's cooperation in war on terror brought in U.S. dollars — and the CIA

BANGKOK, Thailand, May 31, 2007 — It was only two months before the 2003 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting in Bangkok — President Bush would be attending — and Thai soldiers and police had the building surrounded. Their mission: to nab one of the world's most wanted terror suspects, the man thought to be one of the masterminds behind the spectacular nightclub bombings in Bali that had killed more than 200 people a year earlier. >>

A Repugnant Choice
In dealing with Uzbek dictator, U.S. buys access to air field — even after eviction

WASHINGTON, May 31, 2007 — Uzbekistan presents one of the clearest examples of the paradox confronting the United States in its war on terror: As it pursues Islamist extremists around the world, it sides with a repressive despot out of what is perceived as military necessity. >>
Top 10 U.S. Military Aid RecipientsThree Years After 9/11
Country
Total
Israel
$9,094,874,000
Egypt
$6,025,456,540
Pakistan
$4,152,654,219
Jordan
$2,670,414,688
Afghanistan
$2,663,783,836
Colombia
$2,048,565,665
Turkey*
$1,324,923,070
Peru
$445,825,971
Bolivia
$320,682,000
Poland
$301,136,119

CountryTotal

COLOMBIA $42,267,391

ISRAEL $33,194,309

MEXICO $29,148,963

JAMAICA $24,906,160

ETHIOPIA $22,175,930

ANGOLA $17,189,149

INDIA $12,313,055

THAILAND$10,305,844

TURKEY $9,551,616

SOUTH AFRICA $8,386,878



-->* The $1 billion grant made to Turkey through the Economic Support Fund for fiscal year 2003 was rescinded in 2005. '

Zie: http://www.publicintegrity.org/militaryaid/

Nederland en Afghanistan 133






31 May 2007-->

1. The Dead in Afghanistan
U.S. numbers of military deaths in Iraq1 receive a lot of attention. Unfortunately, other deaths in Iraq do not receive their due respect.
But American public awareness of murder/death in Afghanistan is cloudy. Nor do people realise that foreign troops are as unwelcome in Afghanistan as they are in Iraq. This article is about some of those deaths in Afghanistan. Civilian deaths have recently infuriated the Afghan people. The Americans ‘pay off’ these deaths -as if money is compatible with and resolves grief.
I have not included all deaths because of the ‘labels’ put on to them either by the military or the media. Their mindset insist on using words like ‘Al Qaeda,’ ‘Taliban,’ ‘militants’, ‘insurgents.’ It would be more correct to use the Afghan language - the “Taliban’ refer to themselves as ‘Mujahadeen’. As in Iraq, there are many people who legally object to - are resistant to - the occupation of their country. It is unfortunate that the U.S. military does not appear to respect the death of any Afghan, whatever their label.
There are further coalition deaths which are not included. The numbers given in official tallies vary. And I have surely missed some ‘civilian’ deaths. Apologies.
Some very callous remarks have been made by the U.S. Military in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Here is a ‘comment’ made to the article (18.05):
“As for the muslims- kill ‘em all and let satan sort ‘em out. I don’t think G_D wants anything to with them- he sent them to the pit after all.”
And who supports this war criminal attitude?V.P. Cheney.
And the wounded?
Who is accountable for these tragedies?
1. The Dead in Afghanistan2. Civilian Deaths Reports Articles: Nangarhar; Further Afghan Civilian Deaths3. Some “Insurgent” / “Taliban” Deaths4. Some Pakistan Deaths5. Some Afghan Soldiers’ Deaths6. Coalition Deaths7. Suicide Attacks8. Future Deaths
2. Civilian Deaths'
Misschien dat onze volksvertegenwoordigers aan het kabinet dat zoveel samen wil doen enkele vragen kunnen stellen. Misschien dat mijn wakkere collega's van de parlementaire pers hier aandacht aan kunnen besteden.
Trouwens, wie zou Jezus Christus hebben gebombardeerd als hij nu geleefd had? En welke socialist is voor het vermoorden van burgers? Alle inzenders van het juiste antwoord worden beloond met een enkele reis Bagdad.

Libanon 2

Girls from Nahr al-Bared Refugee Camp staying at a school in Beddawi Camp. (Tanya Traboulsi)

'"They won't let me be at peace, even in my dreams"
Nadine Kotob writing from Beddawi Refugee Camp,
Live from Lebanon,

I don't know where to begin. After spending two days in Chatila Refugee Camp, and a day in Beddawi, I find myself at a loss for words. How do I describe the conditions these Palestinian refugees are being subjected to when I never even conceived of the possibility of such unspeakable conditions. Again, I don't know where to begin. But I will try my best. I will try because all of the refugees we interviewed in our first day at Beddawi beseeched us to let the world know how their situation has quickly deteriorated in a matter of days.As we drove into Beddawi, with four other cars also carrying aid to Nahr al-Bared refugees, I tried to take in the scene before me. The narrow streets were jam-packed with cars and swarming with people. We drove to the Ghassan Kanafani kindergarten where we were to meet with some people who would help us navigate through the camp and distribute the aid we had brought with us. There were six journalists who had accompanied us to the camp and so I went with them to translate. Kamal Kamar, a very pleasant and helpful man, was our guide. He took us to the UNRWA school where many of the displaced refugees are sleeping. (Others who have relatives in the camp sleep with them or refugees that live in Beddaoui welcome them in their homes.)As we entered the school, I was shocked at the level of noise in the school. I had to put my hands to my ears because I wasn't expecting so much noise in the narrow hallways. But I guess this is to be expected from a building that is housing such an enormous amount of people. As we walked into the first room, there were about 30 refugees sitting around, most of them on the floor and a few others on chairs. Hana, who is a Finnish reporter, and I, asked if we could take pictures. One man in his thirties remarked that that's all the Palestinian people are good for. His statement shook me a little because it really rings true. The Palestinians have suffered so much and all one can do is document their suffering. Every time the situation of some Palestinians gets a little better, a new situation arises that forces them to leave their homes yet again. And all one can try to do for them is to take pictures and expose their suffering and disseminate it in mainstream media outlets and hopefully, mobilize some people to take action against the injustices committed against them. This is what I hope to do with this piece. And I sincerely hope that whoever reads this will at least act in some way to help publicize what is happening to these refugees and work to ease their suffering.'

Lees verder: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article6969.shtml

De Israelische Terreur 210

The body of Omar Abu Daher being lifted into a Palestinian ambulance. (Martina Iannizzotto)

'Another assassination in Ramallah's city centerSam Bahour writing from Ramallah, occupied Palestine, Live from Palestine, 29 May 2007

It was a good day today, well, that is until about 5:40pm when Israeli undercover and military forces assassinated a Palestinian outside the window where I was standing.The target was Omar Abu Daher, a 22-year-old who it seems happens to be a member of a security force loyal to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. He was only one of several that were murdered in cold blood today; two more were killed in Gaza, one in Tulkarem, two others in Jenin. These are the ones reported so far, but the night is still young.Unknowingly, I, along with a dozen Palestinian and foreign colleagues, happened to be in the same building where it seems Omar was having dinner. Omar was sitting in the popular street-front Nazareth Restaurant (catty-corner from Angelo's Pizzeria), well known for its falafel and where my wife stopped this morning to bring some falafel home for breakfast after she drove our younger daughter Nadine to school this morning. The restaurant is walking distance from the elementary school's entrance.As a matter of fact, only a few hours before this assassination, between 1:30pm and 1:45pm to be exact, my daughters and I passed this same spot after picking up Nadine from school. Our other daughter Areen was home all day studying for her end of year exams and wanted to take a break so she went with me for the drive. I dropped Areen off in front of Nazareth Restaurant so she could buy the three of us ice cream cones from Baladna Ice Cream Shop to eat on the way home. Baladna is a few doors up from Nazareth Restaurant.Later in the afternoon, while Omar, the latest Israeli victim, was having a meal at Nazareth Restaurant, I was on the third floor, in a roundtable discussion, one in a series that I'm attending at the Mattin Group, a human rights-based policy research and advocacy organization. We were meeting to learn about the workings of the European Union and how we can make it more accountable to International Humanitarian Law. The irony between what was about to happen on the ground floor and what was being discussed on the third floor is mind-boggling and sobering, to say the least.'

Lees verder: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article6972.shtml


De Israelische Terreur 209

Debris litters the streets of Ramallah after an undercover Israeli death squad shot a 22-year-old man 24 times at close range, an event which was not reported by the mainstream press. (Elias Khayyo)

'Israel's house of horrors
Ali Abunimah writing from Chicago, USA,
Live from Palestine,
30 May 2007

Reading an account of an Israeli cabinet meeting in Ha'aretz is like a trip through a House of Horrors. Here are some choice excerpts:"Ministers Meir Sheetrit and Rafi Eitan proposed Wednesday that Israel produce its own version of the Qassam rocket to be fired at targets inside the Gaza Strip in response to Palestinian rocket fire on its southern communities.""Minister of Industry, Trade and Labor Eli Yishai of Shas proposed that Israel use air strikes to destroy Palestinian towns and villages in response to the rocket fire, after giving local residents advance notice allowing them to evacuate their homes.""Shas MK Yitzhak Cohen proposed cutting off the supply of electricity, water and fuel to the Strip, and justify the move by saying that Qassam rockets had destroyed Israel's infrastructure and that it will take a long time to repair the facilities with which to supply the Palestinians with basic resources. Shin Bet security service director Yuval Diskin suggested that Cohen's idea is worth examining."This is the state that is supposed to be the conscience of the world following the Nazi holocaust? Which other government could openly hold such discussions to such overwhelming silence from the so-called "international community"?For weeks, Israel has bombed the Gaza Strip killing dozens. In one such attack, on May 20, Israel bombed the house of a democratically-elected legislator Khalil al-Haya, killing eight people, including seven members of his family -- among them three teenagers. B'Tselem called for a criminal investigation, but the issue has been long forgotten by the rest of the world.Israel's relentless attacks are allegedly a "response" to Palestinian rocket fire which has killed two Israelis, and caused minor damage in the small town of Sderot. Anyone who follows the news carefully, however, knows that Israel has never needed an excuse to attack Palestinians. In the whole of 2006, Israel killed almost 700 Palestinians, according to B'Tselem, of whom half were unarmed civilians, and 141 children. In the same period, Palestinians killed 23 Israelis.Israel never accepted any of the unilateral truces offered and implemented by Palestinian factions. Once again, today, Palestinian Authority prime minister Isma'il Haniyeh said "We in the Palestinian government are in favor of a reciprocal and simultaneous calm ... in the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip. The ball is now on the Israeli court." (Ha'aretz, May 30) This was instantly rejected by Israel which demands the right to kill Palestinians whenever and wherever it likes while Palestinians should not in any way defend themselves.'

Lees verder: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article6975.shtml

Boycot Israel 4

'British academics endorse logic of boycott
Report, Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel,
30 May 2007

The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) salutes the historic decision by the University and College Union (UCU) Congress today to support motions that endorse the logic of academic boycott against Israel, in response to the complicity of the Israeli academy in perpetuating Israel's illegal military occupation and apartheid system.Academic boycott has been advocated in the past as an effective tool in resisting injustice. In the 1920s, Mahatma Gandhi called for boycotting British-run academic institutions, to increase Indian self-reliance and also to protest the role of those institutions in maintaining British colonial domination over India. In the 1950s, the African National Congress (ANC) called for a comprehensive boycott of the entire South African academy, as a means to further isolate the apartheid regime. To their credit, British academics were among the very first to adopt the latter boycott. Moral consistency makes it imperative to hold Israel to the same standards.Israel is now widely recognized as a state that actually practices apartheid, as evidenced in recent declarations by international figures from Jimmy Carter and UN Special Rapporteur on human rights Prof. John Dugard to Archbishop Desmond Tutu and South African government minister Ronnie Kasrils, among many others. During the ongoing occupation of Palestinian land, Israel's policies have included house demolitions; Jews-only colonies and roads; uprooting hundreds of thousands of trees; indiscriminate killings of Palestinian civilians, particularly children; relentless theft of land and water resources; and denying millions of their freedom of movement by slicing up the occupied Palestinian territory into Bantustans -- some entirely caged by walls, fences and hundreds of roadblocks.Throughout forty years of Israeli military occupation of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank (including East Jerusalem), Israeli academics have duly continued to serve in the occupation army, thereby participating in, or at least witnessing, crimes committed on a daily basis against the civilian population of Palestine. No Israeli academic institution, association, or union has ever publicly opposed Israel's occupation and colonization, its system of racial discrimination against its own Palestinian citizens, or its obstinate denial of the internationally-sanctioned rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties. Furthermore, the Israeli academy has been in direct or indirect collusion with the military-intelligence establishment, providing it with "academic" research services to sustain its oppression.'


De Israelische Terreur 208

'Israel attacks Gaza

On 16 May 2007, Israel renewed air strikes on the beleaguered Gaza Strip, firing on a Hamas Executive Support Forces base in southern Gaza, killing three. In the following days, according to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), Israel "intensified air attacks targeting civilian facilities and paramilitary sites ... IOF [Israeli Occupation Forces] claim that these attacks come in response to [the] launching [of] home-made rockets at Israeli towns."As of 29 May 2007, "50 Palestinians have been killed and 206 injured. The attacks have also resulted in the destruction of 71 houses, five of which completely; 47 security installations; and 47 commercial and industrial premises, 39 of which were completely destroyed," as the Palestinian human rights organization Al Mezan reports. During the same time period, two Israeli civilians were killed and several more have been injured by Qassam rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.The latest assault on Gaza comes six months after a cease-fire marked the end of last year's deadly "Operation Autumn Clouds," which followed Israel's invasion of the Gaza Strip in late June. UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Palestinian Territories, John Dugard writes that these operations "took the form of repeated military incursions into Gaza, accompanied by heavy shelling, render[ing] the question whether Gaza remains an occupied territory of academic interest only ... Between 25 June 2006 and the truce that came into force at the end of November 2006, over 400 Palestinians were killed and some 1,500 injured. More than half of those killed and wounded were civilians. Of those killed some 90 were children; and over 300 children were injured. During the same period three israeli soldiers were killed and 18 wounded, and two Israeli civilians were killed and some 30 injured in Sderot and its precincts by Qassam rockets fired by Palestinians from Gaza."Israeli officials have stated their intentions to resume the extrajudicial execution of Hamas leaders and activists. The Israeli public security minister Avi Dichter stated on army radio on 21 May that exiled Hamas political leader Khaled Meshal "is a more than legitimate target and I am convinced that at the first opportunity we will rid ourselves of him, despite the difficulty of the task." Dichter was echoed by national infrastructure minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer who stated on Israel Radio the same day, "I don't distinguish between those who carry out the [rocket] attacks and those who give the orders. I say we have to put them all in the crosshairs," adding that "if [Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail] Haniyeh is part of those who give the orders to carry out attacks, that will make him a legitimate target."'

Lees verder: http://electronicintifada.net/bytopic/672.shtml

De Volkskrant 33


De Volkskrant functioneert als de dorpspomp. Ik zal u uitleggen hoe.

De openingspagina van de Volkskrant van vandaag:

Bizar Seksschandaal in Groningen. 6 kolommen breed.

Bussemaker: alle ouderen recht op eigen kamer. 1 kolom breed.

Rijks presenteert "De Nieuwe Mensch." 5 kolommen breed. Geillustreerd met een foto.

Belegger aan banden. Twee kolommen breed.

Geen enkel buitenlands bericht. Alleen de provincie is interessant voor de Volkskrant.

Opening van de Volkskrant bijlage Voorkant:

Vegas blijft Vegas. Zes kolommen breed. Geillustreerd met een foto van de Strip.

Martin Bril. Domheid. Twee kolommen.

Het buitenland op de openingspagina's blijft beperkt tot amusement uit Las Vegas. Tot zover de journalistiek van en voor provincialen.

Om te weten wat er in de grote-mensen-wereld gebeurt bent u aangewezen op de buitenlandse kranten en omroepen. Want ook de berichtgeving van Radio 1 is provinciaals. Alleen de polder telt. Voor de provinciaal houdt de wereld op bij de dorpsgrens. De dorpspomp is de plaats waar de provinciaal zijn nieuws verneemt, de laatste roddels en sensatie. De Volkskrant functioneert als de dorpspomp.

woensdag 30 mei 2007

Cindy Sheehan 3


Ook Danny Schechter, the news dissector, besteedt vandaag aandacht aan Cindy Sheehan:
It was sad to read Cindy Sheehan’s letter of “resignation” from the peace movement because she offered so much of herself—despite all the personal pain she suffered from the loss of her son, the breakup of her family, and all the vicious and insensitive attacks on her politics and personhood.
I could feel her frustration and exasperation with Democrats who patronized her only to end up supporting the war in the end. I share her anger at elements of the “peace movement,” which is really a movement in pieces, often marching in lockstep with Congressional Democrats and only paying lip service to the grassroots constituencies and the many who have given and suffered so much to oppose this bloodbath in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Cindy inspired the following she built because she was a genuine convert to activism, an articulate mainstream person who put her body on the line and spoke truth to power with an unmistakable sincerity.
Her honestly and energy contrasted sharply with the agenda-driven caution of those on the Hill and the many organizations that think politics is about raising money online to fund political commercials in the mainstream media or occasionally take symbolic stands.
It was not surprising that she would burn up in anger and burn out in energy.
In some ways, she reminded me of another “indigenous” leader in another movement years back who I was blessed to know: Mrs. Fannie Lou Hamer of Ruleville, Mississippi, a share cropper turned civil rights activists who gave the movement its soul and who ended up, years later, alone, unknown and unappreciated.
Like Cindy, Fanny Lou gave her movement its authenticity and its voice. She is remembered, in part, for saying, “I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.”
Cindy got sick and tired too, of all the cowardly deal-making and betrayals. She wrote bitterly to Congress and then about herself:
“How can you even go to sleep at night or look at yourselves in a mirror? How do you put behind you the screaming mothers on both sides of the conflict? How does the agony you have created escape you? It will never escape me… I can’t run far enough or hide well enough to get away from it.'

The Empire 253

'Blogosphere Fury at Dems on Iraq Vote
By Jonathan E. Kaplan
The Hill
Wednesday 30 May 2007

Furious that congressional Democratic leaders did not fight harder to pass a supplemental spending bill with a timeline to end the war in Iraq and tougher benchmarks, liberal online activists have ripped party leaders and threatened to halt contributions to Democratic lawmakers.
The power of the so-called netroots - liberal activists who rally likeminded supporters on the Internet - is not clear. They have a loud voice and they have the capacity to raise money quickly for a candidate they favor, but they so far have been unable to push House and Senate Democratic leaders on a range of issues, including ending the war in Iraq.
"They let us down this time," Markos Moulitsas Zúniga, the founder of the site DailyKos, wrote. "But the opportunities for them to make amends still exist. And if they don't? Well, no one, not even the most rabid partisans, have an endless supply of patience."
Liberal bloggers even criticized House Democratic Caucus Chairman Rahm Emanuel (Ill.), who helped recapture the House last year as chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), for saying that the deal was "the beginning of the end of the president's policy in Iraq."
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (Md.) and other senior Democrats have promised to use the regular defense appropriations process and other legislative vehicles to end the war in Iraq. In addition, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has guaranteed centrist Democrats a vote on a measure this fall to de-authorize the use of force.
But nothing that Democrats have said seemed to placate the party's left wing. Most galling to some activists was a DCCC letter that tried to claim credit for forcing President Bush to agree to "accountability and reporting provisions" and "cancel[ing] the President's blank check in Iraq."
David Sirota, a prominent blogger and former congressional aide, wrote that the letter was "utterly Orwellian."
Readers at the DailyKos website were furious about the letter, while other readers were angry that the DCCC used James Carville, a Democratic political consultant, in a separate fundraising pitch. Many said they would not donate to DCCC any more.
"You insult me, sir. And I will not be insulted. Go to hell," wrote Bill from Portland, Maine.
"PIGS will fly before I will contribute a penny to this s- ... where is our spine, backbone, morals and ethics," wrote Left My Heart.
"Unlike our Democratic leaders, I am a Democrat who has backbone and conviction. I am hereby defunding YOU!" wrote Jayden.'

Lees verder:
http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/blogosphere-fury-at-dems-on-iraq-vote-2007-05-30.html Of:
http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/053007E.shtml

Irak 210


'Dying for an Iraq That Isn't
By Harold Meyerson
The Washington Post
Wednesday 30 May 2007
Of all the absurdities attending our unending war in Iraq, the greatest is this: We are fighting to defend that which is not there.
We are fighting for a national government that is not national but sectarian, and has shown no capacity to govern. We are training Iraq's security forces to combat sectarian violence though those forces are thoroughly sectarian and have themselves engaged in large-scale sectarian violence. We are fighting for a nonsectarian, pluralistic Iraq, though whatever nonsectarian and pluralistic institutions existed before our invasion have long since been blasted out of existence. In the December 2005 parliamentary elections, the one nonsectarian party, which ran both Shiite and Sunni candidates, won just 8 percent of the vote.
Every day, George W. Bush asks young Americans to die in defense of an Iraq that has ceased to exist (if it ever did) in the hearts and minds of Iraqis. What Iraqis believe in are sectarian or tribal Iraqs - a Shiite Iraq, a Sunni Iraq, an autonomous Kurdish Iraqi state, an Iraq where Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani or Moqtada al-Sadr or some other chieftain holds sway.
These are the Iraqs for which Iraqis are willing to kill and die.
Whatever their merits and their shortcomings, they are at least rooted in reality. These Iraqs have adherents and territory. The Iraq for which Bush compels Americans to fight has neither.
One of the mysteries of the current discussion of how best to get out of Iraq is that so many otherwise clear-eyed critics of administration policy say we should withdraw our combat troops but leave units behind to train Iraqi forces. As rational policy, it's vastly preferable to leaving combat forces there as well, but it leaves unanswered the question of which Iraqi forces, exactly, we should train. Those of the current Shiite-dominated Nouri al-Maliki government, which has employed Shiite forces to terrorize Sunni areas? What exactly would we train these forces to do? Be more tolerant of the Sunnis? Would that we could, and would that we could train Sunnis to be more tolerant of the Shiites, but these are matters not subject to training.
When Gen. David Petraeus testifies to Congress in September, he should be asked how many nonsectarian units the Iraqis are fielding, in actions that effectively build a nonsectarian Iraq. If the answer is zero, Congress could declare that it is U.S. policy to bolster Shiite Islam - or, alternatively, Sunni Islam - with the force of our arms. Or maybe, just maybe, it could begin mandating the withdrawal of American forces.'

Het Neoliberale Geloof 42


CEOs vs. Slaves
By Barbara Ehrenreich
The Nation

Recent findings shed new light on the increasingly unequal terrain of American society. Starting at the top executive level: You may have thought, as I did, that the guys in the C-suites operated as a team-or, depending on your point of view, a pack or gang-each getting his fair share of the take. But no, the rising tide in executive pay does not lift all yachts equally. The latest pay gap to worry about is the one between the CEO and his-or very rarely her-third in command.
According to a just-reported study by Carola Frydman of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Raven E. Saks at the Federal Reserve, thirty to forty years ago, the CEOs of major companies earned 80 percent more, on average, than the third-highest-paid executives. By the early part of the twenty-first century, however, the gap between the CEO and the third in command had ballooned up to 260 percent.
Now take a look at what's happening at the very bottom of the economic spectrum, where you might have pictured low-wage workers trudging between food banks or mendicants dwelling in cardboard boxes. It turns out, though, that the bottom is a lot lower than that. On May 16, a millionaire couple in a woodsy Long Island suburb was charged with keeping two Indonesian domestics as slaves for five years, during which the women were paid $100 a month, fed very little, forced to sleep on mats on the floor and subjected to beatings, cigarette burns and other torments.
This is hardly an isolated case (see my book Global Woman: Nannies, Maids and Sex Workers in the New Economy, co-edited with Arlie Hochschild). If the new "top" involves pay in the tens or hundreds of millions, a private jet and a few acres of Nantucket, the new bottom is slavery. Some of America's slaves are captive domestics, like the Indonesian women in Long Island. Others are factory workers, and at least 10,000 are sex slaves lured from their home country to American brothels by promises of respectable jobs.
CEOs and slaves: These are the extreme ends of American class polarization. But a parallel kind of splitting is going in many of the professions. Top-ranked college professors, for example, enjoy salaries of several hundred thousand a year, often augmented by consulting fees and earnings from their patents or biotech companies. At the other end of the professoriate, you have adjunct teachers toiling away for about $5,000 a semester or less, with no benefits or chance of tenure. There was a story a few years ago about an adjunct who commuted to his classes from a homeless shelter in Manhattan, and adjuncts who moonlight as waitresses or cleaning ladies are legion.
Similarly, the legal profession, which is topped by law firm partners billing hundreds of dollars an hour, now has a new proletariat of temp lawyers working for $19-$25 an hour in sweatshop conditions. On sites like Temporary Attorney, temp lawyers report working twelve hours a day, six days a week, in crowded basements with inadequate sanitary facilities. According to an article in American Lawyer, a legal temp at a major New York firm reports being "corralled in a windowless basement room littered with dead cockroaches," where six out of seven exits were blocked.'

Cindy Sheehan 2

'Cindy Has Earned a Rest
By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t Columnist
Wednesday 30 May 2007

My alliance with Cindy Sheehan began with an exchange of emails several years ago after I made mention of her son, Casey, in an article about the expanding number of American troops lost in Iraq. She wrote to thank me, and to correct me on some small details about precisely when and how Casey died. Our friendship grew from that moment, and over time, she was always there to hand me a good kick in the pants whenever I needed one.
Last March, Cindy's long-belt of road-bound activism brought her to Boston, where she spoke at a rally commemorating the four-year anniversary of the war. My bar is a favorite spot of hers; I'd brought her there twice before during previous visits she made to Massachusetts, and both times I saw the same woman of passionate energy and commitment who sat in a Texas ditch until the country could no longer ignore her - or the war. The light was in her eyes, the hope that things could be changed was in every word she spoke and, as ever, the sorrow from her loss was there like a shroud. She was motivated, optimistic, cynical, tired, inspired and resolute, all at the same time.
When I brought her and some of her friends out to have a beer and relax last March, however, I saw a different Cindy.
She was not broken or in despair, but neither was she the same woman I'd known before. Health problems had robbed her of the energy that once crackled around her, one arm was in a sling because of tendon damage, and she was tired. Bone-tired. Tired in soul and spirit. I began that evening looking forward to the kind of rollicking talks we'd always enjoyed together, but wound up spending most of the night pleading with her to take some time off and rest.
Cindy hadn't really stopped, you see. She'd never left the road, never surrendered to exhaustion or sadness, never allowed the barbs from enemies and so-called "allies" to deter her or discourage her. But sitting there, I could see how much of a toll her efforts and sacrifices were taking. The treads on her tires were worn down to the radials, so to speak.'

Lees verder: http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/053007A.shtml

Het Kabinet 8

De Volkskrant bericht:

Tweede nee heeft grote gevolgen
Van onze verslaggevers Theo Koelé en Marc Peeperkorn
DEN HAAG - Nederland kan het zich niet veroorloven een nieuw Europees verdrag te torpederen. De positie van Nederland in de EU, wellicht zelfs het lidmaatschap, staat dan op het spel.
Die waarschuwing uitten CDA-minister Verhagen en PvdA-staatssecretaris Timmermans (beiden Buitenlandse Zaken) dinsdag, bijna twee jaar nadat de Europese grondwet per referendum naar de prullenbak was verwezen. Een tweede 'nee' roept volgens Timmermans de vraag op: ‘Gaan we door met Europa of niet?’ Hij beseft dat dit als ‘chantage’ kan worden opgevat. ‘Maar een tweede ronde is de laatste ronde’.
Lees verder: http://www.volkskrant.nl/binnenland/article430201.ece/ Tweede_nee_heeft_grote_gevolgen

De NRC bericht:
'Tweede nee plaatst Nederland buiten EU'
Door een onzer redacteuren
Den Haag, 30 mei. Nederland kan het zich niet veroorloven per referendum opnieuw een Europees verdrag af te wijzen. Als Nederland weer ‘nee’ zegt tegen een verdrag, dan plaatst het land zich buiten Europa.
Dat verklaarde minister Maxime Verhagen (Buitenlandse Zaken, CDA) gisteravond in aanvulling op uitlatingen eerder die dag van zijn staatssecretaris Frans Timmermans (Europese Zaken, PvdA).
Tweede_nee_plaatst__Nederland_buiten_EU
Wat mij vooral opvalt, is de strekking van dit bericht. De Volkskrant meldt ons in feite dat de parlementaire democratie in dit vraagstuk volledig buiten spel is gezet. De kiezers kunnen alleen voor-stemmen en wel omdat volgens de christelijke en socialistische bewindsman en de Volkskrant: Nederland kan het zich niet veroorloven een nieuw Europees verdrag te torpederen. De positie van Nederland in de EU, wellicht zelfs het lidmaatschap, staat dan op het spel.
De NRC komt met dezelfde boodschap: 'Tweede nee plaatst Nederland buiten EU' Nederland kan het zich niet veroorloven per referendum opnieuw een Europees verdrag af te wijzen. Als Nederland weer ‘nee’ zegt tegen een verdrag, dan plaatst het land zich buiten Europa.
Als onafhankelijk journalist had ik de betreffende bewinslieden onmiddellijk gevraagd hoe hun opmerkingen te rijmen zijn met de parlementaire democratie in Nederland. Maar geen van mijn collega's zijn op die gedachte gekomen. Waarom niet, is onduidelijk. Weet u het?

Sven Lindqvist


Een van de grootste journalisten van deze tijd is de Zweed Sven Lindqvist, van wie ik enkele fascisnerende boeken heb gelezen in het Engels. Nu is er eindelijk een boek van hem in het Nederlands vertaald. Uitgeverij De Geus meldt:

Titel: Een reis door niemandslandauteur: Sven Lindqvistoorspr. titel: Terra Nullius, en resa genom ingens landoorspr. taal: Zweedsvertaler: Ceciel Verheijisbn: 9789044508673aantal blz.: 224prijs: € 21,90eerste druk: 15 02 2007bindwijze: gebonden
Inhoudsbeschrijving
De Romeinen noemden het land dat niet tot het Romeinse Rijk behoorde Terra Nullius. In de negentiende eeuw namen de Europeanen de term over voor grondgebied dat niet aan een Europees land behoorde. Australië was in die zin lange tijd Niemandsland, hoewel er een volk woonde met een hoogst eigen cultuur.Schrijver-onderzoeker Sven Lindqvist huurt een auto en doorkruist het Australische continent. Hij bevaart rivieren, overnacht op heilige plaatsen en ontmoet de afstammelingen van de oorspronkelijke bevolking, die niet zelden verslaafd zijn aan alcohol, maar hunkeren naar de door dromen gestuurde eigen beschaving, die grotendeels verloren is gegaan.Al reizend legt Lindqvist op verrassende wijze verbanden tussen verleden en heden.
Tekstfragment
Een paar kilometer ten oosten van de hoofdweg ligt Woomera, een symmetrisch, achter de tekentafel ontworpen bungalowstadje dat is gebouwd in 1947. De Britten moesten ergens wonen toen ze hun intercontinentale raketten gingen testen. De enorme raketbasis strekt zich uit van de lanceerbanen in Woomera tot aan Port Hedland aan de Australische westkust, over een lengte van vierentwintighonderd kilometer niemandsland met her en der wat boerderijen. Blanke boerderijen, natuurlijk. Met de zwarten hield men geen rekening.Op zes landgoederen verplaatsten ze de boerderijen zodat die buiten de gevarenzone kwamen te liggen. Vrouwen en kinderen werden geëvacueerd. Aan iedere lancering ging een telefonische waarschuwing vooraf. Eventuele schade zou volledig worden vergoed.Toen ze in 1955 de Black Knight-raketten begonnen te testen, waren er voor dertigduizend pond schuilkelders gebouwd bij zes landhuizen en elf outstations. En er waren voor achtduizend pond extra telefoonlijnen aangelegd.Maar de zwarten hadden helemaal geen boerderij of telefoon.

Ik heb zijn laatste boek gelukkig nog niet gelezen, maar ik garandeer u dat ook dit werk weer meesterlijk zal zijn. De vier boeken die ik van hem las zijn getiteld:
A History of Bombing

The Scull Measurer's Mistakeand Other Portraits of Men and Women Who Spoke Out Against Racism

Exterminate All the Brutes

Desert Divers

Zie ook zijn website: http://www.svenlindqvist.net/frameset.asp

Wijsheid 17


I have come to the conclusion that imperialism and exploitation are forms of cannibalism and, in fact, are precisely those forms of cannibalism which are most diabolical or evil.... Cannibalism, as I define it, is the consuming of another's life for one's own private purpose or profit.

With these words, Professor Jack D. Forbes introduces his concept of the wétiko disease or the sickness of cannibalism, a socio-cultural epidemic of which Columbus was a major carrier, according to Forbes.
Thus the slaver who forces blacks or Indians to lose their lives in the slave-trade or who drains away their lives in a slave system is a cannibal. He may "eat" other people immediately... or he may "eat" their flesh gradually over a period of years.
Professor Forbes, former chair of Native American Studies and professor of anthropology at the University of California, Davis, was born in Long Beach but has lived in Berkeley and Davis since 1967. He attended the University of Southern California, earning A.B., M.A. and Ph.D. degrees, the latter in history with a minor in North American ethnology. Forbes worked his way through college, serving on the fire crew of the Lassen National Forest and driving trucks for Meadow Gold Dairies. In 1960 he joined the faculty at California State University, Northridge. There he received a Guggenheim Fellowship and then in 1964 moved north to the University of Nevada, Reno.In 1967 he assumed the post of Research Program Director at the Far West Laboratory for Educational Research and Development in Berkeley. He then became a professor at U.C. Davis in 1969. In 1981-82 he was named a Fulbright Visiting Professor at the University of Warwick, England, and in 1983-84 he was honored with the Tinbergen Chair at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam. In 1986-87 he served as a Visiting Scholar at the Institute of Social Anthropology, Oxford University, England.Of Powhatan, Delaware and non-Indian background, Professor Forbes became very active in Native Arnerican affairs very early, organizing the Native Arnerican Movement in 1961. In 1960 he formed the American Indian College Committee with Navajo artist Carl Gorman and others to create proposals for an Indian university. At Cal State Northridge he developed a proposal for an American Indian Studies program in 1960, ten years ahead of its time. In 1967 he was a co-founder of the California Indian Education Association and in 1971 of D-Q University, the Indian college near Davis. From 1968 through 1969 Forbes was a co-organizer of United Native Americans in the Bay Area and served as editor of Warpath. During the same period and later he served as editior of the Powhatan newspapers Tsen-Akamak and Attam-Akamik.Forbes' published writings include twelve books, over twenty short books and monographs, ninety-five scholarly articles, over one hundred popular articles, numerous short stories, and poems. His first book, Apache, Navaho and Spaniard, remains in print after thirty-two years. Columbus and Other Cannibals is the current culmination of Forbes' thinking about the ultimate social causes of aggression and exploitation and about Native American philosophical beliefs. His earliest version of the book was sketched out in 1976 and published in a preliminary version in 1978. Although focusing upon tragic issues of terrorism, genocide, and violence, Forbes does not offer only a negative view of human evolution. He goes beyond a condemnation of aggression to undertake an analysis of how colonialism and systems of hierarchy systematically alter and brutalize individuals. Most importantly, he offers cultural options based upon traditional Native American philosophy and antidotes to the disease of cannibalism."Finding a Good Path," Forbes' final chapter rests upon the notion that the real test of a spiritual path is not to see how many monuments result, or how many converts are obtained, or how many prayers are repeated over and over again by imitative voices, but rather the test is: How do people who follow that path behave? How do they behave towards other humans? How do they behave towards the earth? How do they behave towards other living creatures?...Columbus and Other Cannibals will offer readers an exciting challenge, an opportunity to look at the world in a new way, with hope for the future rising out of the pain of the last five hundred years. [Published by Autonomedia Publishers, June 1992, ISBN 0-936-756-70-5; distributed by Small Press Distribution, Berkely, California.]

dinsdag 29 mei 2007

Het Neoliberale Geloof 41

Na 11 september 2001 verklaarde George Bush waar de zogeheten war on terrorism om draaide: "We cannot let the terrorists achieve the objective of frightening our nation to the point where we don't conduct business or people don't shop. Terrorists want to turn the openness of the global economy against itself. We must not let them.. Out of the sorrow of September 11th, I see opportunity to expand our ties of trade."

Sleutelwoorden: terrorists, business, people don't shop, expand our ties of trade. Een uiterst korte en krachtige samenvatting van het consumentisme en kapitalisme dat de miljarden armen in de wereld buitensluit.

Tik de foto aan en zie wat dit systeem concreet betekent.

De Commerciele Massamedia 70


Daan de Wit van http://www.deepjournal.com/p/6.html wees me op het volgende:
De historicus Maarten van Rossum schrijft:
'Voorkennis: De vrije pers was niet kritisch genoeg
Apocalyptische retoriek
Als het zo voor de hand lag om te twijfelen aan de apocalyptische retoriek van de Amerikanen, waarom is dat dan niet op veel grotere schaal gebeurd? Dat is wat deze hele affaire zo beangstigend maakt. Een door ideologische waan gedreven Amerikaanse regering heeft een zeer ruime meerderheid van de Amerikaanse bevolking zonder grote moeite kunnen overtuigen met een reeks van evidente leugens. De pers is daarbij ernstig tekort geschoten in zijn kritische functie en datzelfde geldt voor de volksvertegenwoordiging.
Natuurlijk kan ter verklaring worden gewezen op de vrijwel onaantastbare populariteit van de president in deze periode en op het trauma van 9/11. Desondanks is het beangstigend te weten dat een leugenachtige overheid in een vrij en democratisch land met een vrije pers zo gemakkelijk een meerderheid van de bevolking kan overtuigen van de schijnbare noodzaak van een overbodige oorlog.'

De Commerciele Massamedia 69

FAIR bericht:

'Coup Co-Conspirators as Free-Speech Martyrs
Distorting the Venezuelan media story

The story is framed in U.S. news media as a simple matter of censorship: Prominent Venezuelan TV station RCTV is being silenced by the authoritarian government of President Hugo Chávez, who is punishing the station for its political criticism of his government.According to CNN reporter T.J. Holmes (5/21/07), the issues are easy to understand: RCTV "is going to be shut down, is going to get off the air, because of President Hugo Chávez, not a big fan of it." Dubbing RCTV "a voice of free speech," Holmes explained, "Chavez, in a move that's angered a lot of free-speech groups, is refusing now to renew the license of this television station that has been critical of his government."Though straighter, a news story by the Associated Press (5/20/07) still maintained the theme that the license denial was based simply on political differences, with reporter Elizabeth Munoz describing RCTV as "a network that has been critical of Chávez." In a May 14 column, Washington Post deputy editorial page editor Jackson Diehl called the action an attempt to silence opponents and more "proof" that Chávez is a "dictator." Wrote Diehl, "Chávez has made clear that his problem with [RCTV owner Marcel] Granier and RCTV is political."In keeping with the media script that has bad guy Chávez brutishly silencing good guys in the democratic opposition, all these articles skimmed lightly over RCTV's history, the Venezuelan government's explanation for the license denial and the process that led to it.RCTV and other commercial TV stations were key players in the April 2002 coup that briefly ousted Chávez's democratically elected government. During the short-lived insurrection, coup leaders took to commercial TV airwaves to thank the networks. "I must thank Venevisión and RCTV," one grateful leader remarked in an appearance captured in the Irish film The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. The film documents the networks’ participation in the short-lived coup, in which stations put themselves to service as bulletin boards for the coup—hosting coup leaders, silencing government voices and rallying the opposition to a march on the Presidential Palace that was part of the coup plotters strategy.'

Lees verder: http://www.fair.org/index.php?page=3107

Zie ook: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=5832390545689805144

Het Neoliberale Geloof 40

'Crushing Sales
More home owners are struggling to make house payments

TRAVERSE CITY — Dawn and Scott Hentschel came within a sliver of losing their home after Scott, a construction worker, was laid off two months earlier than usual last fall.
The couple saw a legal notice in the newspaper and then a note in the mail that said their bank planned to foreclose on the two-bedroom, ranch-style house they bought two years ago.
"I was horrified,” Dawn said. "We have three kids. Where are you going to go next? I don't want my kids to be homeless.”
Last year saw a crush of local foreclosures, and the rate is even greater this year. Grand Traverse County recorded 179 sheriff's deed sales in 2006, more than any other year this decade. This year, there have already been 108 through May 11.
It's not just local.
In the fourth quarter of 2006, 44 states saw an increase in the foreclosure rate, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association headquartered in Washington, D.C.
Michigan was the third highest, with 2.39 percent of mortgages being foreclosed, twice the national rate of 1.19 percent. Only Ohio and Indiana were higher.
In a typical foreclosure a homeowner receives notices from the bank for missing payments, before the bank places a foreclosure notice in the newspaper. The sheriff's department then includes the property in one of its regular foreclosure sales. After the sale, the owner has a set period of around six months to redeem the property by arranging an agreement with the high bidder or the bank.'

Lees verder: http://www.record-eagle.com/2007/may/27forenews.htm