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 April 2007
The Ten Year Occupation
JORGE MARISCAL
It is becoming increasingly clear that the U.S. occupation of Iraq will last as least as long as the U.S. war in Southeast Asia. General David Petraeus, the new military commander in Iraq, told PBS’s Jim Lehrer last week, "The Washington clock i...
"More Than Complicated"
ALFREDO MOLANO
Looking ahead, the way that big businessmen do, the Pacific coast and the eastern plains are the country’s most promising regions in terms of value and profitability, taking into account the FTA [free trade agreement] and the paramilitaries’ "rein...
A Moratorium on Free Trade Agreements
LAURA CARLSEN
At literally minutes to midnight on April 1, the United States signed a free trade agreement (FTA) with South Korean negotiators and rushed it to Congress. Congress now has 90 days to review the Korea, Peru, Colombia, and Panama agreements, before fast track autho...
"More Than Complicated"
ALFREDO MOLANO
Looking ahead, the way that big businessmen do, the Pacific coast and the eastern plains are the country’s most promising regions in terms of value and profitability, taking into account the FTA [free trade agreement] and the paramilitaries’ "rein...
Farm Labor Organizer Murdered in Mexico
DAN La BOTZ
Santiago Rafael Cruz, an organizer for the Farm Labor Organizing Committee (FLOC) based in Toledo, Ohio, was found murdered in the union’s office in Monterrey, Mexico on the morning of April 9. He had been bound hand and foot and beaten to death. Circumstanc...
Anglophone Fantasies and French Realities
MICHAEL NEUMANN
Doug Saunders, writing the April 7 issue of the Globe and Mail, does a good job of representing the unutterable silliness of Anglophone writing about France. Here’s a sample: On Thursday in London, I had breakfast with Anthony Giddens, th...
Ho Industry Whores
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
Like many of the heehaw racists strewn across the cable dial and AM frequencies, Don Imus must be wondering why this time he got his tongue caught in the wringer. It was suddenly news that Imus shored up his ratings with racist cracks at blacks and Hispanics? Only...
Imus and Lady Hoopsters
LINDA FORD
Don Imus definitely picked the wrong team to call "nappy-headed hos." And now, amazingly, the infamous radio personality is paying for it and losing his gig. It was 1980 when Coach Vivien Stringer, then coach at the African-American school, Cheney State,...
The Ten Year Occupation
JORGE MARISCAL
It is becoming increasingly clear that the U.S. occupation of Iraq will last as least as long as the U.S. war in Southeast Asia. General David Petraeus, the new military commander in Iraq, told PBS’s Jim Lehrer last week, "The Washington clock is...
When Miami Crashes
ALAN FARAGO
We suppose Miami lawyer and lobbyist Miguel De Grandy couldn’t help writing a $500 check to the effort to unseat community activist Pat Wade from her position on a local community council in Miami-Dade County. And why would anyone care? Now, therein l...
The Lies of Mario Lozano
GIULIANA SGRENA
After two years of silence, Mario Lozano has marched forward to tell the truth-or rather, according to the version presented by the American media, to "expose the lies of Sgrena." Too bad that neither he nor his advisors have noticed that in the meantime...
Shrinks, Lies and Torture
Dr. TRUDY BOND
But a few days later Muriel, reading over the Seven Commandments to herself, noticed that there was yet another of them which the animals had remembered wrong. They had thought the Fifth Commandment was "No animal shall drink alcohol," but t...
A Feral Dog Howls in Harvard Yard
JOE BAGEANT
It is time to close America’s universities, and perhaps prosecute the professoriat under the RICO act as a corrupt and racketeering-influenced organization. American universities these days have the moral character of electronic churches, and as...
Racy Sex, Sexy Racism
GAIL DINES
So Don Imus finally pushed the envelope too far by calling the Rutgers women’s basketball team "nappy headed hos". This lethal combination of racism and sexism galvanized African-American and women’s groups, media watch-dog organizations and ...
Wolfowitz’s Real Crimes
ABU SPINOZA
The flak that the World Bank’s President Paul Wolfowtiz is getting currently really misses his main crimes: The invasion and occupation of Iraq and for waging the endless war of state terror. As Rumsfeld’s second-in-command Mr. Wolfowitz bears direct p...
The Terrorist Walks
FIDEL CASTRO
George W. Bush is undoubtedly the most genuine representative of a system of terror forced on the world by the technological, economic and political superiority of the most powerful country known to this planet. For this reason, we share the tragedy of the America...
What Would Imus Do?
MISSY COMLEY BEATTIE
If Cowboy Don could, he would continue to accumulate the millions of dollars a year he was paid By MSNBC and CBS for his television and radio shows. Imagine all this money made at the expense of individuals and groups who for years have suffered the venom of Don I...
The Imus Affair, Hip Hop and Politics
DAVE MARSH
In the immediate aftermath of the Don Imus scandal-before there was a resolution, in fact-respectable folks turned their sights on what I guess is the real threat to social harmony in this country: rap music. "A line has been drawn as to what is acceptable an...
Wolfowitz’s Real Crimes
ABU SPINOZA
The flak that the World Bank’s President Paul Wolfowtiz is getting currently really misses his main crimes: The invasion and occupation of Iraq and for waging the endless war of state terror. As Rumsfeld’s second-in-command Mr. Wolfowitz bears direct p...
Columbia University’s Two-Tiered Punishments
MARTÍN LOPEZ, COSETTE OLIVO And KARINA GARCÍA
After over five months of disciplinary proceedings, we Columbia University students, who in October protested a speech by then Minutemen Project leader Jim Gilchrist, have been advised that Columbia University has issued discipline against us. These arbitrary and ...
The Failed Chávez Coup, Five Years On
GEORGE CICCARIELLO-MAHER
Caracas. Q: How do we know that Hugo Chávez has popular support? A: Simple. Because if it wasn’t for the popular masses springing autonomously into action on April 13th 2002, he would no longer be in power. ...
Drawing a Line in the Heartland
JOHN ROSS
The wan Arctic sun slipped into vernal equinox on the evening I touched down in the not so frozen north. Islets of crusty, discolored snow were still cemented to the sidewalks of Minneapolis-St. Paul but they were diminishing day by day. Global warming equals glob...
America as Proxy
RAMZY BAROUD
Conflicts in the Middle East are often orchestrated from afar, using proxies — the least risky method to fight and win a war. Despite its geopolitical fragmentation, the Middle East is loosely united insofar as any major event in any given locale can subsequ...
The Shattering of Mosul
PATRICK COCKBURN
"If you went into the streets on your own you would be dead in 15 minutes," says Khasro Goran, the deputy governor of Mosul, the second largest Iraqi city. An able, confident man he speaks from experience having survived more assassination attempts than ...
Aid and Comfort for Torturers
STEPHEN SOLDZ
On January 24, 2003, National Guardsman Sean Baker, stationed as a military policeman at Guantanamo detention center, volunteered to be a mock prisoner, donning an orange suit and refusing to leave his cell as part of a training exercise. As planned, an Immediate ...
Peace Be With You, Mr. Vonnegut
HARVEY WASSERMAN
As the media fills with whimsical good-byes to one of America’s greatest writers, lets not forget one of the great engines driving this wonderful man—he HATED war. Including this one in Iraq. And he had utter contempt for the men who brought it about....
Kirkuk, Oil and the Kurds
LAITH Al-SAUD
Before the end of this year, the residents of the city of Kirkuk (about 250 KM north of Baghdad) will partake in a referendum to choose their fate. At issue is whether the oil rich city will be annexed as part of so-called Kurdistan. The history of Kirkuk is emble...
Memo to Imus
DAVE ZIRIN
In an absolutely mind bending turn of events, Don Imus is now a man without a job. A week after calling the Rutgers women’s basketball team "nappy headed hos," the man once hailed by Time Magazine as one of the most influential people in the countr...
The Awful Truth About Hillary, Barack and John
NORMAN SOLOMON
The Pentagon’s most likely next target is Iran. Hillary Clinton says "no option can be taken off the table." Barack Obama says that the Iranian government is "a threat to all of us" and "we should take no option, includ...
Symbolism Over Politics
JoANN WYPIJEWSKI
So here’s the question: which was Don Imus’ bigger offense, calling the African-American women on the Rutgers basketball team nappy-headed or calling them hos? Almost all the commentary I’ve read on this now is all about the "racially charge...
U.S. Attorneys and Voting Rights
MARJORIE COHN
The Bush administration is shocked, shocked, that the firing of a few U.S. attorneys has caused such a stir in Washington. After all, the Oval Office says, the President can choose whomever he wants to prosecute federal cases. But the Supreme Court declared in Ber...
The Release of Dennis Counterman
JOE DeRAYMOND
On October 18, 2006, Dennis Counterman walked away from the Lehigh County Courthouse in Allentown, Pennsylvania. He had served 18 years in prison, five of them on death row, and had endured a death warrant, signed by then-Governor Tom Ridge. Since 2001, he had bee...
God Bless You, Mr. Vonnegut
RON JACOBS
It was 1972. I was a junior in high school. A number of my friends and I were sitting in the audience at the Amerika Haus in Frankfurt am Main, Germany waiting for the speaker to appear. A few minutes after 8:00 PM a gray-haired man who looked a little like Mark T...
Bush Family War Profiteering
EVELYN PRINGLE
On Monday, April 9, 2007, the Boston Herald reported that the US military had announced the Easter weekend deaths of 10 more American soldiers, including six killed on Sunday. The Associated Press reports that, since the war began in March 2003, over 3,000 members...
Horatio Hornblower’s Worst Nightmare
WILLIAM S. LIND
The tiff over maritime boundaries in the Shatt-al-Arab between Iran and Great Britain seems to be over, with the British sailors and Marines released and returned to the U.K. I continue to suspect a deal was made regarding the five Iranian Revolutionary Guard offi...
Big Profits from Big Brother
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
The War on Terror is a marketing campaign for security industries and terrorism experts. The latter are pulling in the consulting fees, and the former are rapidly inventing new products that enable "our" government to watch our every move and to know our...
Squeezing Palestinians into an Impossible Mission
NICOLA NASSER
The Israeli 40-year old military occupation and the more than a year old economic siege are eroding the national existence of Palestinians and squeezing the Palestinian leadership into an almost impossible mission of securing law and order by practically renewing ...
"I Believe the War is Being Deliberately Prolonged by Those Who Have the Power to End It"
SIEGRFRIED L. SASSOON
I am making this statement as an act of wilful defiance of military authority, because I believe that the war is being deliberately prolonged by those who have the power to end it. I am a soldier, convinced that I am acting on behalf of soldiers. I believe ...
Chile: a Country Geographically Located in South America "By Accident"
NIKOLAS KOZLOFF
Recently, NIKOLAS KOZLOFF, author of Hugo Chavez: Oil, Politics, and the Challenge to the U.S....
The Fine Print on Drug Industry Kickbacks
PETER ROST, MD
Most of you know about the $35 Genotropin settlement between the Department of Justice and Pfizer. About $20 million of that settlement relates to kickbacks to a pharmacy benefit manager, to improve formulary position. What you don’t know is what will...
Impeach the System
ROBERT JENSEN
Whether one believes the impeachment of George W. Bush is a realistic possibility or is simply a vehicle for expressing outrage and educating the public about the crimes of the powerful, any such talk starts with the U.S. Constitution and Article II, Section 4, wh...
How "Wars on Terror" Should be Fought
R. T. NAYLOR
On March 26, 2007, in an event that went largely unnoticed (or, if noticed, generally misunderstood) by the American media, the Parti Québecois, which stood for the independence of Québec from Canada and which had for over 30 years been the most impo...
How Concessions by UAW Lost Jobs
LEE SUSTAR
Seventy years after the breakthrough strike that first established the United Auto Workers (UAW) as a powerhouse of organized labor, the union faces new demands for concessions that could sweep away decades of gains by workers. The issues were highlighted a...
Solidaridad?
MARIO JOSEPH
and BRIAN CONCANNON Venezuela’s President Hugo Chávez found a hero’s welcome when he visited Haiti on March 12. People from Port-au-Prince’s poor neighborhoods lined the streets of the capitol to cheer, to chant, to dance and sing, wi...
The Carbon Offset Tax is Just Another Nuke Bailout
RUSSELL D. HOFFMAN
Yesterday Newt Gingrich and John Kerry pretended to debate Global Warming issues, in a bipartisan love-fest which spun around the following issue: Can free-market incentives produce a reduction in carbon poisoning in the atmosphere, or must we resort to gov...
Tiger Woods in Dubai
JOSEPH GROSSO
This past week endured the annual mind-numbing golfing event known, fittingly perhaps, as The Masters. "A tradition unlike any other" is the banal slogan tagged to the event by its corporate sponsors at CBS. This year added an extra layer of historical s...
The Generation of IEDs and iPods
VIJAY PRASHAD
On September 3, 2006, the weekend before the Fall term opened, two young boys from Connecticut were killed. Eighteen-year-old Private 1st Class Nicolas Madaras of Wilton died when a roadside bomb (an IED) exploded next to his humvee in Baqubah, Iraq. In Ramadi, on...
History Will Vindicate Lt. Ehren Watada
PAUL ROCKWELL
Dear Major General Charles Jacoby, Jr.: Congratulations on your nomination to Commanding General at the Army post in Fort Lewis. Many weeks have passed since Judge John Head, over objections of defense attorney Eric Seitz, declared a mistrial in the...
Not an Intellectual Squabble
RAMZY BAROUD
In a spacious yet fortified UN compound in Rome members of the Palestine committee at the General Assembly repeated old mantras; they vowed support for the Palestinians, issued a press release and then went to lunch. The committee consisted of several UN a...
China and the Fate of the Tiger
NIRMAL GHOSH
Bangkok. Next week will see the first instalment of a showdown over the fate of what many would say is the very identity of Asia –the tiger. A meeting in Kathmandu beginning April 16, will see many of the world’s top conservationists and...