Exclusively in the new print issue of CounterPunch
FATTENING WALL STREET — Mike Whitney reports on the rapid metamorphosis of new Fed Chair Janet Yallin into a lackey for the bankers, bond traders and brokers. The New Religious Wars Over the Environment: Joyce Nelson charts the looming confrontation between the Catholic Church and fundamentalists over climate change, extinction and GMOs; A People’s History of Mexican Constitutions: Andrew Smolski on the 200 year-long struggle of Mexico’s peasants, indigenous people and workers to secure legal rights and liberties; Spying on Black Writers: Ron Jacobs uncovers the FBI’s 50 year-long obsession with black poets, novelists and essayists; O Elephant! JoAnn Wypijewski on the grim history of circus elephants; PLUS: Jeffrey St. Clair on birds and climate change; Chris Floyd on the US as nuclear bully; Seth Sandronsky on Van Jones’s blind spot; Lee Ballinger on musicians and the State Department; and Kim Nicolini on the films of JC Chandor.
Archives from March 2003
Paint Them Red
VANESSA JONES
On the day that the US/UK/Australian "Coalition of the Willing" started its unauthorized attack on Iraq, the Australian Prime Minister John Howard opened a Palestinian art exhibition, named "Treasures of Palestine" in Canberra, the capital of A...
Inventing Demons
PHILIP S. GOLUB
There is a coalition of the radical right in the United States, including the odd Democrat, that has long held that patriotic mobilisation is important in holding American society together. When detente broke out in the 1970s, these hawks worried about any reducti...
Mothers, Kids and Crash Kits
ROMI MAHAJAN
You will excuse me if this is somewhat disjointed. Bombing began at 5:35am this morning and I will attempt to tell you something of this. We don’t know...
Shock, Awe and Coup d’Etat
MILAN RAI
The latest news about the US war plan confirms that this war is not for the liberation of Iraq. The war is designed to precipitate a coup. ‘General Richard Myers, chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff, said recently: "If asked to go into conflict in ...
On the Current Experience of Terror
RICHARD LICHTMAN
He who is laughing has not yet heard the terrible news. Bertolt Brecht Robert Jensen has written an important piece on confronting our fears in the process of building a movement...
The Exchange Rate
BEN TRIPP
(A protest speech for March 20, 2003, in Los Angeles.) I cannot condone the use of violence of any kind for any reason, unless somebody really fucks with me, for example by making an abrupt lane change in front of my motherfucking car, asshole. So even as we go mar...
Stumptown Blockaded
JOSH FRANK
Portland Oregon. Several thousand protesters descended upon downtown Portland Thursday afternoon in protest of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. Starting out as a peaceful demonstration, protesters blocked incoming and outgoing rush hour traffic, occupying over 7...
Relative Calm in Baghdad after First Wave of Missiles
KATHY KELLY
BAGHDAD, IRAQ. People in our team here are heartened by news of actions in the United States to continue antiwar momentum. The bombings last night were intense for about thirty minutes beginning at 9:10 last night. But, compared to what people were bracing...
Bombing Away the Chance for Joy
RAMZI KYSIA
BAGHDAD, IRAQ. Wednesday, the day it started, I went around to some of the high schools that we’ve been working with to do letter exchanges and diaries. Schools were in session. About half the students weren’t there. Some were staying at home w...
The Other America
HANI SHUKRALLAH
As we went to print the military forces of the US and its smaller but eminently zealous war partner, Tony Blair’s Britain, were set to launch a massive air and ground invasion of Iraq, the one certain result of which is the utter destruction of a once prospe...
The Other America
EDWARD SAID
A small item in the press a few days ago reported that Prince Ibn Al-Walid of Saudi Arabia had donated 10 million dollars to the American University in Cairo to establish a department or centre of American Studies there. It should be recalled that the young billio...
The US Could be at War for Years
BRADLEY BURSTON
A Pentagon-dubbed ‘decapitation’ mission, a pre-dawn air assault with Saddam Hussein as its reputed target, may have been President George Bush’s best chance to stave off a protracted war, which could spell ultimate defeat even if American troops...
Shock and Awe Followed by Block to Block?
DOUGLAS HERMAN US Air Force Veteran
This weekend, as the bombs fall on Baghdad, stop by your local video store and rent one or both of these movies. Rent either “Stalingrad” if you can find it, which is the more accurate film, directed by Wolfgang Peterson, or the Hollywoodized version of the sa...
The Sun Never Sets
KEVIN ALEXANDER GRAY
“We must make clear to the Germans that the wrong for which their fallen leaders are on trial is not that they lost the war, but that they started it…. No grievances or policies will justify resort to aggressive war. It is utterly renounce...
I Was a Soldier Once
STEPHEN BANKO III
I was a soldier once, although I would like to believe that only my imagination could have created anything as horrific as war. Vietnam is a continuing nightmare in my life, a nightmare from which I have never been able to awaken. I was also young once, alt...
If War is Business as Usual, There Should be No Business as Usual
RON JACOBS
The Tigris and Euphrates Rivers-the water from which our civilization first sprang-are under attack. The peoples of that land, and the river that is their lifeblood, are being turned into dumping grounds for depleted uranium and other poison. The merchants of deat...
From Waiting to War…a Day and a Night in Baghdad
JO WILDING
Fourteen people live in Yasser’s house in Saddam City: his parents, his brothers and sisters, his aunt and several cousins, nieces and nephews and his grandmother. She is paralysed, and he gently lifted her, sitting on her bed, propped her on pillows and spo...
Myths and Facts About the War
RAHUL MAHAJAN And ROBERT JENSEN
Last night, our president announced a war to the nation and the world. Let us be clear about what this war is and what it is not. This war is not the result of a failure of diplomacy. This war is not a pre-emptive war. This war is not about we...
Glimpses of Life in Baghdad
SHANE CLAIBORNE
This is a historic moment. I have never felt so much hope and so much uncertainty. We stand on the eve of perhaps one of the most horrifying violent acts ever committed in human history (US war plans call for the “Shock and Awe” launching of 3000 cruis...
The Illness of Victors
KATHY KELLY
I suppose I’m more prepared than most of my companions for the grueling roar of warplanes, the thuds that threaten eardrums, the noise of antiaircraft and exploding "massive ordnance." Compared to average Iraqis my age, I’ve tasted only a sma...
This War is Brought to You By…
PEPE ESCOBAR
ALEXANDRIA, Egypt. They’ve won. They got their war against Afghanistan (planned before September 11). They’re getting their war against Iraq (planned slightly after September 11). After Iraq, they plan to get their wars against Syria, Lebanon, Iran and...
Bush’s Address, Uncensored
ILJA TROJANOW
Address to the Nation (Uncensored Version) My dear fellow Americans, Today I stand here before you as a sinner. I have sinned before and I will sin again. But while, I admit, my sins in the past were minor, more of a personal nature, my sins in the f...
Come On Democrats, Stand Up for Peace
RALPH NADER
Dear Minority Leader Daschle and Minority Leader Pelosi: President Bush is on the verge of taking the United States into a costly preemptive war, against an enemy widely viewed as posing no imminent or direct threat to our nation or allies, despite the nonv...
John Philip Sousa
HAMMOND GUTHRIE
Measuring March time 600,000 feet move in place A modern armada churns at sea–and 21,000 lb. bombs explode Reality TV Testing fear at home and abroad The clocks tick slow motion The pendulums swing perpetual–and All the dots are lined with cloud...
Torture, Moral Clarity and Democracy
BEN FEINBERG
The Bush administration, clearly confident in its actions in the face of overwhelming popular opposition throughout the world, takes its righteous superiority from something it and its supporters on the extreme right wing of American discourse and your radio dial-...
New Year’s Resolutions
SIMA SAEEDI
Iranians celebrate their New Year at the Spring Equinox. At 4:30:21 am Friday 21 March 2003 Tehran Time, the length of the day and night will become equal. Good and Evil will balance out, to use a Zoroastrian analogy. On that hour, Iranian families stand next to t...
War, Hypocrisy and Profits
JASON LEOPOLD
This is my last ditch effort to show the hypocrisy within President Bush’s administration regarding its policies toward Iraq and its President, Saddam Hussein, just as the United States and Britain prepares to invade the country. It was only five yea...
Defining Terrorism
DOUGLAS LUMMIS, FRANK BARDACKE And JEFFREY LUSTIG
In the October 10 issue of the New York Review of Books, and in the three subsequent issues, the following classified advertisement appeared, listed as “miscellaneous”. CONTEST: $1000 prize to the first person who offers a definitio...
Red Alert Blues
KURT NIMMO
It looks like Bush’s Iraq attack will go down sooner before later and — if we are to believe Tom Ridge and the Ministry of Homeland Security folks — the Iraqis or maybe al-Qaeda will respond with terrorist attacks on America. In response, securit...
War on a Whim
MARK ZEPEZAUER
The original USA PATRIOT Act, as students of history know, was passed more or less unanimously by a terrified Congress in the weeks after Nine Eleven Day. Though much of it appeared to have been drafted well in advance of the attacks, and most of the members who v...
War is Theft
WILLIAM HUGHES
Who’s going to pay for this immoral, obscenely expensive, clearly unjustified, totally unnecessary, fraudulently induced and illegal war with Iraq? Answer: The American taxpayers, that’s who! This is so, despite the fact the people have not cons...
There Goes the Neighborhood
KATHY KELLY
This afternoon I went to see Karima and her children. They recently weathered near catastrophe following an eviction notice from the hovel they’d lived in since I first met them in 1996. With help from friends, they’ve managed to rent a new apartment, ...
Not Just Anti-War, But Pro-Democracy
HARRIET BARLOW
“The antiwar comedy ‘Lysistrata’ — in which women withhold their favors to secure peace — received more than a thousand readings yesterday in 59 countries, all 50 states and Washington” reported the March 4, New York Times. One ...
A History of War
MARK TWAIN
Excerpts from The Mysterious Stranger (Harper & Brothers, 1916). One day, a lit...
Firing Squad
DAVID KRIEGER
Saddam Hussein is a bad man So let’s line up the children of Iraq And shoot them. Saddam is a very bad man So let’s line up the mothers of Iraq And shoot them. We know that Saddam is a bad man So let’s line up all the old people of ...
Defending the Dixie Chicks
DAVEY D
I’m gonna keep this short, sweet and simple… I have no problem with what Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks said the other week in London about being ashamed that President Bush is from Texas… The main reason for her statement was our Pres...
Darkness Before the Storm
ROBERT FISK In Baghdad
The darkness is beginning to descend, the fog of anxiety that falls upon all people when they realise that they face unimaginable danger. It’s not just the thousands of empty, shut-up shops in Baghdad, whose owners are taking their goods home for fear of looting. It...
Introducing, the Coalition of the Willing
DAVID LINDORFF
Here they are, the Coalition of the Willing, courtesy of Colin Powell and your friends at the White House. This is the entire State Department list of the so-called “cCoalition of the Willing” , those countries that are allegedly backing our pre-emptiv...
Friendly Fire
DAVID VEST
“Fratricide” is a fancy Latin word used at the Pentagon to refer to the slaughter of our own soldiers in “friendly fire” incidents. Months before Bush Two’s War, high-placed military sources were already cautioning front-line commande...
Predictions About the Iraq War
CHUCK O'CONNELL
Back in 1999 after looking at the sanctions program against Iraq and the NATO war against Yugoslavia, I made a few predictions to my students which I have reiterated each subsequent year. Those predictions were as follows: 1. The U.S. would inv...
In Memoriam, Rachel Corrie
WILLIAM A. COOK
The picture told the story: this wisp of a girl defiant against the armored clad Goliath Towering above her, An illustration from the Book of Kings. This orange-coated giant Went out from Israel, The land of the Philistines, To slaughter the Palestinians....
A Black Bag Job on the Constitution
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
A few weeks after the attacks of 9/11, a vigilant citizen in rural Skamania County, Washington noticed something strange: four black men dressed in turbans and robes taking target practice in a local rock quarry. Skamania County, known throughout the Northwest for...
Last Orders
CHRIS FLOYD
When George W. Bush finally launches his war of aggression and dominion against Iraq, the decades-long corruption of the great ideals of the American Republic will be complete. The shadowy militarized oligarchy created after the Second World War — the infamo...
Medellin, Life Under Paramilitary Occupation
FORREST HYLTON
"I copied the concept of paramilitary forces from the Israelis." Carlos Castaño, head of the paramilitary AUC (United Self-Defense of Colombia) Five months ago, Colombian President Álvaro Uribe ordered &quo...
Why I Resigned from Blair’s Cabinet
ROBIN COOK
I have resigned from the cabinet because I believe that a fundamental principle of Labour’s foreign policy has been violated. If we believe in an international community based on binding rules and institutions, we cannot simply set them aside when they produ...
A Vietnam Vet Replies to Charlie Daniels
DAVID BOJE
Dear Charlie Daniels, A student sent me the Charlie Daniel’s letter (see below) and said it would convince me to stop putting daisies in the cannons in front of ROTC building on the New Mexico State University campus. I am a professor there, and I a...
Baghdad, a City Sleepwalking into War
ROBERT FISK
For Baghdad, it is night number 1,001, the very last few hours of fantasy. As UN inspectors prepared to leave the city in the early hours of this morning, Saddam Hussein has appointed his own son, Qusay, to lead the defence of the city of the Caliphs against the A...
How Will We Honor Rachel Corrie?
MORGAN GUYTON
The Israeli bulldozer driver who killed Evergreen State University student Rachel Corrie in Rafah, Gaza was probably not a public relations expert. Still he could not have picked a better time to commit a war crime when the US media as well as peace movement have ...
In the Meantime
HAMMOND GUTHRIE
48 hours to get out of town before 3,000 satellite-guided bombs 48 hours ahead of 250,000 soldiers shocking and awing their way to Bagdhad 1.25 billion dreaming nightmares reach for reality’s tinder box eight minutes into the aftermath of suffering re...
48 Hours to War
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
Monday night, denouncing the UN Security Council for inaction, Bush gave 48 hours for Saddam Hussein to get out of Iraq. If he doesn’t, the bombs will drop, the missiles will fly, the tanks will roll. Most certainly people will die. Bush’s ultim...