Exclusively in the new print issue of CounterPunch
ANATOMY OF TORTURE — Historian Christopher Dietrich on the 100-year-long history of American torture; Jeffrey St. Clair on the implications of giving impunity to the┬áCIA’s torturers; Chris Floyd on how the US has exported torture to its client states around the world. David Macaray on the Paradoxes of Police Unions; Louis Proyect on Slave Rebellions in the Open Seas; Paul Krassner on the Perils of Political Cartooning; Martha Rosenberg on the dangers of Livestock Shot-up with Antibiotics; and Lee Ballinger on Elvis, Race and the Poor South. Plus: Mike Whitney on Greece and the Eurozone and JoAnn Wypijewski on Media Lies that Killed.
Archives from May 2006
Posada Carriles: Extradite or Prosecute
JOSÉ PERTIERRA
The first year anniversary of Luis Posada Carriles’ detention by the Bush Administration was the 17th of May. At first glance, we might view this as a cause for celebration: that a notorious international terrorist, a man known as the Osama Bin Laden of Lati...
Defanging the Endangered Species Act
ALAN FARAGO
It’s always front-page news when an alligator kills a human. The same would be true for a bear mauling or an attack by a mountain lion or shark. We are hard-wired for horror when a top predator kills one of us. It happens rarely, but when it does, tel...
Democrats and the Defense Budgets
WINSLOW T. WHEELER
All the conditions are ripe for a major debate on America’s defense budget. A Republican White House and Congress have produced, at increased cost, a military establishment that is shrinking, aging and less ready to fight. The ruinous effects have shown up a...
Letter to Manuel Mercado
JOSÉ MARTÍ
Dos Rios Camp, May 18, 1895 Mr Manuel Mercado, My dearest brother: Now I can write, now I can tell you how tenderly and gratefully and respectfully I love you and that home which I consider my pride and responsibility. I am in daily danger of giving ...
Building a Movement that will be Stronger After the US is Out of Iraq
BILL SIMPICH
Following the April 29 antiwar march in New York, which gathered 350,000 participants and very little press coverage, it looks like the movement to end the war in Iraq is poised to make the shift from single-day protests to an action campaign. There is a call for ...
Our Lives are on the Line
JUAN SANTOS
He looked squarely into my eyes. "So, you see what’s coming," he said. I was speaking with one of the core leaders of the movement for migrant’s rights, and had laid before him a sketch of a plan of resistance for the nation’s ba...
The Needle and the Damage Done
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
It’s a sad thing when the jury gives the answer the Court is seeking. But it shows how civilized our country is when we struggle with something the rest of the world no longer needs to discuss, discussion having been rendered moot by the banning of the pract...
Ice Cream Wilderness?
GEORGE WUERTHNER
The recently announced collaborative timber-wilderness deal for the Beaverhead Deerlodge National Forest (BDNF) between the timber industry and representatives of the Montana Wilderness Association (MWA), Trout Unlimited (TU), and National Wildlife Federation (NWF...
The Nakba in Palestine
NORA BARROWS-FRIEDMAN
As the heavy shadow of the 1948 Nakba hovers and recedes over the narrow alleyways of refugee camps and Diaspora communities this week, Palestinians remain at Israel’s whim to starve, die, or become displaced and divided. Subdued commemorations are ha...
The Carnage in Basra
PATRICK COCKBURN
Arbil, Iraq. One person is being assassinated in Basra every hour, as order in Iraq’s second city disintegrates, according to an Iraqi Defence Ministry official. And a quarter of all Iraqi children suffer from malnutrition, a survey of 20,000 h...
What For?
VICTORIA BUCH
I have an old aunt in Lithuania. During her lifetime she has lived under four regimes, and has seen it all. She is a fountain of wisdom. Once I asked her: Why did Russians wage war on Chechnia? They let go of much richer republics–Ukraine, Georgia. Wh...
Nuclear Hypocrites
ERIC RUDER
For weeks, the mainstream media have been filled with accusations that Iran’s nuclear program presents an alarming threat to the U.S. and the world. And a string of U.S. officials are threatening military action against Iran for refusing to "cooperate.&...
The NYT Confronts Mearsheimer and Walt–Not Quite Head On
LENNI BRENNER
I’ve been a political activist for 54 years. During that time I’ve had plenty of chances to do stupid things and I’ve taken full advantage of the opportunities. But I’ve developed only one perversion: I not only read New York Times editoria...
Inside the Senate Immigration Bil
LEE SUSTAR
As George W. Bush called for sending National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border, a split emerged in the immigrant rights movement over so-called compromise legislation in the Senate. The deal–named for its chief negotiators, Sens. Chuck Hagel (R-...
An Interview with Ray McGovern
LARRY EVEREST
Courageous actions and boldly speaking the truth-even by one person-can galvanize the feelings of millions. This happened last year when Cindy Sheehan camped outside Bush’s ranch in Crawford, Texas and demanded he meet with her to explain for what "nobl...
More Contradictions from the Iraq War
WILLIAM S. LIND
I recently wrote about a contradiction in our strategy in Afghanistan, where we are simultaneously attempting to draw the rural population away from the Taliban and eradicating opium poppy crops, which drives farmers toward the Tali...
Chavez in London
CounterPunch News Service
Translation by Lawrence Pirela. President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez Good afternoon (said in English). Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone So here we start, and I would like to get the first question from radio and telev...
Where are the Real Leaders?
BRUCE K. GAGNON
A Washington Post-ABC News poll is showing that the public is very angry with Congress. They are not doing their job and the people know it. Nearly two in three Americans believe the war in Iraq has not been worth it. People see the economy unraveling around them ...
Has Anything Really Changed at Fort Sill?
JoAnn WYPIJEWSKI
When I first wrote my story "Malevolent Power at Fort Sill: The Army Slays Its Own", which appeared in the CounterPunch newsletter in late March and here on the website a couple of weeks later, I had this notion that there w...
Immigrant Scapegoats and the Manufacturing of a Crisis
CARLOS VILLARREAL
Pundits and politicians in Washington have called for rounding up and deporting millions of people, breaking up families and fracturing communities. Now politicians and the Pentagon want to put military troops along our border with Mexico along with hundreds of mi...
A Tale of Two District Attorneys
ANTHONY PAPA
Albany County District Attorney David Soares is considered a hero by many for his bold stances and refreshing approaches to delivering justice. He first laid claim to this title in 2004 when he ran on a platform that advocated dramatic change in the draconian Rock...
Bush, Immigration and the Democrats
MICHAEL GEORGE SMITH
Last night, in a live address to the nation on the immigration debate, George W. Bush did what he does best–scapegoat people of color and invoke the War on Terror to get what he wants. It is a familiar theme, played out in Afghanistan, Iraq, New Orleans, the...
Circling the Wagons and Building Walls
RON JACOBS
So Bush and company want to put thousands of armed troops on the border between the United States and Mexico. The supposed reason for this move is to stem the flow of immigrants coming into the US from the south. I have a feeling that this move will be somewhat po...
RED Light District: Bono’s Independent
HARRY BROWNE
"I have no embarrassment at all. No shame." Bono says it himself, in the course of his luvvie interview with comic Eddie Izzard, and that’s a typically ‘disarming’ tactic. But don’t be disarmed: Bono’s shamelessness is of a ...
Regime Change Redux
CHARLES PEÑA
At the end of April, U.S. President George W. Bush was asked at a Rose Garden question-and-answer session with the press about the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA’s) declaration that Iran’s nuclear program was not in compliance with th...
The Moral Barbarism of Blair and Bush
TED HONDERICH
Between about 40,000 and 100,000 civilian deaths have resulted so far from our war in Iraq and its inevitable aftermath. Blair and Bush justify these deaths. They do so partly by the line of thinking that these deaths were not intended by them or our men. They did...
The Real Assault on America
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
The neoconservative Bush regime has adroitly used 9/11 to create fear of terrorism among Americans that blinds Americans to the Bush regime’s assault on our constitutional system. Americans have meekly acquiesced to the Bush regime’s brutal assaults on...
A Sick, Hungry Well-Armed Nation
NORMAN SOLOMON
We see this kind of news story now and again. Sometimes we try to imagine the people behind the numbers, the human realities underneath the surface abstractions. But overall, the responses testify to journalism’s failings — and our own. "Po...
A Travesty of an "Investigation"
WARD CHURCHILL
I have received the report of the Investigative Committee of the University of Colorado and consider it a travesty. This "investigation" has all along been a pretext to punish me for engaging constitutionally-protected speech and, more generally, to disc...
"Jesus Was a Zombie?"
ANNIE NOCENTI
Jesus is dragging his feet. It’s not his fault; his legs are long and the beast he rides is squat. It’s scorched-earth hot, and hard walking for a mule in wet sand, weight of Christ on his back. They say mules are stubborn, but maybe they’re just...
Why the Fundamentalists are Freaking Out Over Da Vinci Code
HARVEY WASSERMAN
Was Jesus married to Mary Magdalene? Did they have a daughter? Questions about Christ’s love life will dominate debate over the release of the DAVINCI CODE this weekend. The answers do matter. But what really counts is the story’s pagan/f...
The Great Decider as God’s Prophet
TOM TURNIPSEED
Many disastrous conflicts in human history were led by men who spoke as if they were directed by God to lead the slaughter. President Bush asserts that "I trust God speaks through me and without that, I couldn’t do my job." His sincere belief that ...
What Bush’s Speech on Immigration Will Miss
JEFF FAUX
In his speech tonight, President Bush will likely once again ignore the 800-pound gorilla sitting in the center of the immigration debate: Mexico, the source of over three-quarters of illegal immigrants in America. Like the rest of Washington, Mr. Bush ta...
Iraq’s "Rag Tag" Army Units Start Fighting Against Themselves
PATRICK COCKBURN
Arbil, Iraq. A gun battle between two units of the Iraqi army has left one soldier and a civilian dead, underlining how ethnic and sectarian divisions are crippling the US-trained force. The shooting, which took place between Kurdish and Shia soldier...
Welcome to London, President Chavez!
KEN LIVINGSTONE
President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela will today become the second head of state–after the Queen–to be welcomed to London’s City Hall. When it comes to the social transformation taking place in Venezuela, the political qualifications often ne...
Abe Rosenthal’s Times
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
A.M. Rosenthal died last week at the age of 84. There were respectful obituaries describing how Rosenthal "saved" the NYT in the 70s by pepping up its news coverage, introducing the supplements and so forth. By the same token Rosenthal sowed the seeds fo...
Hamas is Winning
GIDEON LEVY
This was an especially short masked ball: Two or three months and the "boycott" party of the Palestinian Authority ended. It was also an especially stupid masked ball: Hamas can now brandish a real achievement. Israel and the world have surrendered uncon...
Rewriting the Fourth Amendment
DAVE LINDORFF
Bush’s nominee for head of the CIA, Gen. Michael Hayden, at a press conference, offered an interpretation of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution that removes the requirement of "probable cause" from that important guarantee of freedom. ...
Impeachment is Too Good for Bush
MICKEY Z.
There’s talk of impeachment making the rounds these days … and it’s not just partisan hyperbole. As Dave Lindorff and Barbara Olshansky explain in their new book, "...
Dehumanizing the Undocumented
TANYA MARIA GOLASH-BOZA
and DOUGLAS A. PARKER Increasing numbers of undocumented people are entering the United States and other western countries. During a recent France Deux evening newscast, a Haitian who had entered that part of France (Guyane) which is in South America, declared...
The Battle Cry of G.I. Jesus
DEBRA SCHAFFER HUBERT
"I would execute gays only if we catch them indulging in sodomy," Gary DeMar, popular Christian evangelical minister is quoted in the December, 2005 issue of Mother Jones. DeMar, who casually condemns millions, envisions sinners in line for the death pen...
Appealing to the United States is Not Very Appealing
WILLIAM BLUM
With his recent letter to President Bush, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has become part of a long tradition of Third-World leaders who, under imminent military or political threat from the United States, communicated with Washington officials in the hope o...
Up the Mekong to Cambodia
SAUL LANDAU
French and British tourists discuss bargainsilk scarf purchases on the Mekong River boat ride from Chau Duc to Pnom Penh. The mighty Mekong makes the Mississippi look like a trickle. The river runs from the Tibet south through China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos and Ca...
Mister Bush and Mister Zarqawi, Video Stars
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
It’s all in the eyes of the beholder and the beholder could not help but be struck by what was seen when two videos and two people were juxtaposed. One of the people was described in a BBC profile as "simple, quick-tempered, and barely literate." T...
Why Nuclear Weapons Should Matter
DAVID KRIEGER
For most Americans, nuclear weapons are a distant concern, and deciding what to do about them is a low priority. As a culture, we are relatively comfortable possessing nuclear weapons, believing that they are, on balance, a good security hedge in a dangerous world...
The Marketing of "Cannabis Americana"
FRED GARDNER
Michael Krawitz, founder and curator of the Cannabis Museum, has obtained via ebay a promotional booklet attesting to the widespread medical use of cannabis in the U.S. a century ago. The handsomely designed and printed 16-page booklet was published by Parke, Davi...
Imagining Survival
KATHY KELLY
I’ve been studying Arabic in Amman, Jordan for five weeks. When I stumble over a word that I can’t recognize, I often turn to young friends who work at the front desk of the small hotel where we stay. One night, after struggling with a difficult senten...
"They Ordered Me to Lay My Head In a Pool of Blood"
VALENTINA PALMA NOVOA
My name is VALENTINA PALMA NOVOA. I am 30 years old, and I have spent the last 11 years of my life in Mexico. I am a student at the National School of Anthropology and History, currently in my fourth year studying Cinematography at the Center for Cinematographic ...
The Memoirs of Wilfred Burchett
CHRISTOPHER REED
I had to wait for my review copy of this book for a few weeks. The publisher in Sydney explained that the copy scheduled for me had been diverted to an interloper who had urgently demanded a copy. The interloper turned out to be none other than General Giap, the m...
Hookergate
Dr. SUSAN BLOCK
Wake up and smell the sex! That sizzling aroma wafting up from Washington penetrates the nostrils like the scent of hot dogs grilling on the barbie. And just like that sweet meaty bouquet of backyard BBQs on Memorial Day, it’s hard to tell, from a distance, ...