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 December 2010
Standing Tall in the Rubble
RAMZY BAROUD
When the Iraqi army fell before invading US and British troops in 2003, the latter’s mission seemed to be accomplished. But nearly eight years after the start of a war intended to shock and awe a whole population into submission, the Iraqi people continue to st...
Cutting From the Bottom
BRIAN TIERNEY
Across the U.S. working-class people are struggling, scrapping together meager sums in order to get by. In state and local governments throughout the country, workers are watching public services slashed in the name of balanced budgets. Trillio...
The Minsk Election in a Wikileaks Mirror
ISRAEL SHAMIR
Wikileaks once again has provided the proof positive to unlock a mystery. It’s not the stuff of attention-grabbing headlines and retweets, but it does illustrate how the US State Department can orchestrate riots in a quiet Eastern European country. As an intern...
Right for the Wrong Reasons
RANNIE AMIRI
The foreign policy mantra of Israel’s radical, Moldovan-born foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, can be accurately summarized in just four words: always blame the victim. He may be more vocal than most, but it is the paradigm by which all...
Goodbye to 2010, Year of the Tiger, Hello to 2011, Year of the Rabbit
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
When it comes to journalistic achievements in 2010, the elephant in the room is Wikileaks. The alleged leaker of the Wikileaks files, Army Private Bradley Manning, currently being held in solitary confinement in sadistic conditions, should  vigorously applauded ...
Abolition
DAVID Ker THOMSON
I’d be lying if I said I hate to say I told you so.  I used every one of my bodily orifices back in oh-four in Illinois to warn my friends about that Obama guy, but no, they just couldn’t stop themselves.  In oh-eight I wa...
Japan, From the Ruins
CHARLES R. LARSON
Isle of Dreams, by Japanese writer Keizo Hino, is one of the most strangely compelling novels I have read in years?brief, elliptical, hypnotic, and finally compulsive because of the bizarre story at its center. The novel was originally published in Tokyo in 1985 and ...
Resolved: Act Like Bradley Manning
MISSY COMLEY BEATTIE
I was in Kentucky, more than a week, visiting family. "Get the paper," my mother instructed, adding a "please." When I picked up the December 25th edition of the Lexington-Herald Leader, the center contents tumbled from my grasp as if someone had ...
Welcome to the Collapse
LINH DINH
The spinmeisters are playing the same record over and over, recovery, recovery, scratch, scratch, recovery’s in da house! The Associated Press trumpeted, “After two years of recession, Christmas 2010 will go down as the moment when Americans rediscovered ...
Khodorkovsky’s Trip to the Slammer
MIKE WHITNEY
Vladimir Putin summed it up best when he said, "A thief should sit in jail." Right on. It doesn’t matter if he is the richest man in the country or not. If he’s done the crime, he’s got to do the time. It’s that simple. ...
"Be Ye Not Like a Child … "
SHEPHERD BLISS
The biggest surprise of my 2010 was relationships with four unrelated two-year-olds, who are so authentic and full of magical, life-giving vitality. They live in the present moment, rather than being impeded by their brief pasts or by futurizing. I am 66-years-old an...
Trains, What Hitler Really Did in the War, Eating in Paris and Other Insights
DAN WHITE
Reading too much lately, too much time, not enough work, not enough money in the bank to travel or start a project.  That’s Christmas for you.  Picked up and read ...
The Fall of the House of Zeus
THOMAS NAYLOR
Former Boston Globe writer Curtis Wilkie’s new book The Fall of the House of Zeus (Crown...
The Subversive Conservatism of "True Grit"
JOSHUA SPERBER
The Coen Brothers occupy a Hollywood niche that implies subversion while reinforcing conservatism. "Blood Simple," "Raising Arizona," and "No Country for Old Men" are morality tales in which a flawed ? but invariably handsome and charism...
Interests in Conflict
MARTHA ROSENBERG
At the annual American Psychiatric Association meeting in New Orleans this summer, 200 protestors chanted "no conflicts of interest" and held up photos of individual doctors outside the convention center. Inside the hall, their charges were verified. ...
Biofuel Delusions
ROBERT BRYCE
Debunking the tsunami of hype about biofuels doesn’t require much. A standard calculator will do. Alas, Thomas Friedman can’t be bothered to do the handful of simple calculations that prove the futility of the biofuels madness. ...
A Chinese Migrant’s Long March
BEHZAD YAGHMAIAN
Let me tell you how Yu Xinhong left home for the first time, a few years ago. She had never travelled so far, never been on a train before. It was full of farmers, men and women in Mao suits following their dreams south. Their skins were wrinkled and reddened by the ...
When Progress Didn’t Come and the People Didn’t Awake
ALAN FARAGO
It is hard to face the close of 2010 with an admission. I was wrong. For more than twenty years as an environmentalist and writer, I harbored the expectation that progress would come. But I did not believe it would come because we had somehow persuaded decision-maker...
How Green Became the Color of Money
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
In the early summer of 1995, Jay Hair quietly resigned as head of the National Wildlife Federation. This Napoleonic figure had transformed a once scruffy, apolitical collection of local hunting and gun clubs into the cautious colossus of the environmental movement wi...
Framing the Sixties
RON JACOBS
The 1960s continue to open and salt wounds in the US political and cultural psyche over forty years later.  From the holiday celebrating a domesticated Martin Luther King, Jr. to the hysterical hype around the Black Panthers and Weather Underground, the actual h...
DADT: a Repeal of Convenience
JESS GUH
Am I the only queer person in the country that is sad about the repeal of "Don’t Ask Don’t Tell"? I know the long-delayed bill just signed into law has destroyed my plan to avoid any future military conscription. Let me exp...
Looking Forward for Labor
DAVID MACARAY
Despite the many defeats, false starts, shattered hopes, bitter disappointments, etc., that have dogged organized labor throughout 2010, there are only two New Year’s resolutions that need to be made for 2011.  If both are realized, the labor movement will...
The Political Economy of Duckhorn Pinot
WILL PARRISH And DARWIN BOND-GRAHAM
This is part two of our series on the wine industry in northern California.  In March 2007, a multi-billion dollar investment firm funded primarily by the United States’ two largest public pension funds ? the California Public Employee Retirement Sy...
The US Congress’s Pet Pariah
FRANKLIN LAMB
Beirut This week marks the second anniversary of among the most savage criminal slaughters of human life in long memory. The 522 hour indiscriminate carnage, “Cast Lead”  that killed 1,417 Palestinians, mostly civilians, 352 of them children, ...
The Year in Counter-Terrorism
JOANNE MARINER
As we reach the end of the year, it’s a good moment to look back at some of the court cases, books, and–of course–leaked diplomatic cables that marked 2010. Although we’re now approaching the tenth anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks,...
Peter King, Witch Hunter
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
Peter King is the envy of (a) former Senator Joseph McCarthy and (b) the folks in Salem MA who were looking for, respectively, communists and witches. It was a hard task that they each attacked with persistence and fortitude. It was hard because to the untutored eye,...
The Myth of the "Jolly Green Giant" Exposed
DAN BACHER
Political leaders, NGO representatives and the corporate media have incessantly greenwashed the deplorable environmental legacy of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in a series of photo opportunities, press releases, news conferences and awards ceremonies over the past ...
David F. Noble: In Memoriam
DENIS G. RANCOURT
Arguably the greatest critical historian of science and technology died on Monday December 27, 2010, suddenly and unexpectedly of natural causes and within a few days of being admitted to hospital. His family was by his side. David Noble is sur...
How Green Became the Color of Money
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
In the early summer of 1995, Jay Hair quietly resigned as head of the National Wildlife Federation. This Napoleonic figure had transformed a once scruffy, apolitical collection of local hunting and gun clubs into the cautious colossus of the environmental movement wi...
One Kidney and 19 Years for an $11 Robbery
ANTHONY PAPA
At long last the Scott sisters will be free! Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour in a totally bizarre act of compassion, based on public pressure, used his commutation powers to grant the sisters their freedom. Governor Haley Barbour suspended the life senten...
Obama and the Boy in the Metal Box
MICHAEL TEITELMAN
On December 3, President Obama exercised the constitutional power of pardon for the first time in his presidency.  He could not have made a more politically and morally inconsequential use of this power.  Sadly, it is another manifestation of the Obama admi...
Capitalism in Crisis
MARY LYNN CRAMER
Creating jobs is not the raison d’?tre nor the primary goal of a Capitalist economy. Creating profits for the purpose of Capital accumulation and expansion is the sine qua non and essential function of Capitalism. Often larger profits can ...
Civil Rights in the Age of Neoliberalism
JORGE MARISCAL
The widespread celebration around the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) was certainly justified. The fundamental unfairness of a policy–at its core a free speech issue?that forced U.S. servicewomen and men to lie about an important part of thei...
David F. Noble: In Memoriam
DENIS G. RANCOURT
Arguably the greatest critical historian of science and technology died on Monday December 27, 2010, suddenly and unexpectedly of natural causes and within a few days of being admitted to hospital. His family was by his side. David Noble is sur...
Serfing USA
DAVE LINDORFF
Along with the staggering theft in broad daylight of Americans’ assets that has occurred in the course of the ongoing financial crisis, as taxpayers funded multi-trillion bank bailouts and banks stole homes through foreclosures with the help of fraudulent paper...
Out Lickspittle Press
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
Anyone who doesn’t believe that the US is an incipient fascist state needs only to consult the latest assault on civil liberty by Fox News (sic). Instead of informing citizens, Fox News  informs on citizens. Jason Ditz reports on antiwar.com  that Fox...
Detention and Torture
JENNIFER VAN BERGEN And DOUGLAS VALENTINE
Author’s Note: With the news of President Obama’s plan to make indefinite detentions a permanent feature of our legal landscape, we thought it apropos to re-publish an updated, edited excerpt from a law review article we wrote in 2006 (THE ...
Make Believe Counter-Insurgency
STEWART J. LAWRENCE
War, the old saying goes, is "hell." But what about video war? Polls show that many Americans are fast souring on US military intervention in Iraq and Afghanistan. But, paradoxically, sales of video war-games like Call of Duty, which allow consumers to beco...
A Year of Fall and Decline
DAVID SWANSON
The fall and decline of an empire can take many years, but certain "benchmarks" (as imperial courts have been known to call them) can measure the progress in one year alone. Take, for example, the year 2010. This year opened with the U...
Killer Fires and the Homeless
BILL QUIGLEY
Eight young people, who the Fire Department said were “trying to stay warm,” perished in a raging fire during the night in New Orleans.  The young people were squatting in an abandoned wood framed tin walled warehouse in a Ninth Ward neighborhood bor...
Enough Grandstanding About Khodorkovsky, Ms. Clinton!
YVONNE RIDLEY
I wonder if Hillary Clinton really believes in the pompous invective that sprays from her lips with the rapidity of machine gun fire. We had a classic example of it just the other day when she let rip in her grating, robotic monotone over a Moscow court?s deci...
ObamaCare: Worse Than You Thought
JOHN V. WALSH
Prod a Democrat Party loyalist on the shortcomings of ObamaCare and you are likely to get two retorts: come 2014 at least everyone will be covered; and from the moment when Obama signed the law pre-existing conditions can no longer be used by the insurers to deny cov...
Peter Hoekstra and the CIA
JAMES BOVARD
On December 21, the Central Intelligence Agency gave its Agency Seal Medal to Rep. Pete Hoekstra, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee. Hoekstra has labored almost ceaselessly to assure that the CIA can break federal laws with impunity. CIA ...
The Fight Against Cholera
FIDEL CASTRO
The UN, at the instigation of the US, creator of poverty and chaos in the Republic of Haiti, had decided to send its occupation troops into Haitian territory, the MINUSTAH (UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti), which in passing introduced the  cholera epidemic int...
The Case of the "I (Heart) Boobies!" Bracelets
JULIE HILDEN
This Fall and Winter, an unusual First Amendment conflict has been playing itself out in public schools across the country — from California, to Minnesota, to Montana, to Pennsylvania, to Utah. On one side are students who are wearing bracelets proclaiming &quo...
God-TV Helps Israel Oust Bedouins
JONATHAN COOK
Nazareth. A sign posted a few kilometres north of Beersheba, the Negev’s main city, announces plans to plant a total of a million trees over a large area of desert that has already been designated "God-TV Forest". The Jew...
Wal-Mart Strikes Again
DAVID MACRAY
“Anything that can be digitalized can be outsourced.” ?John Sweeney, former president, AFL-CIO It didn’t get much media attention, but on December 8, Wal-Mart announced that beginning January 1, 2011, it woul...
The Absurdity of Hi-Tech Servitude
BILL MANSON
If we often define "freedom" in entirely political terms, we will understandably focus on the recent assault on civil liberties, notably in the United States. Yet in today’s all-encompassing, profit-driven Marketplace (erroneously termed a "socie...
A Silly Dream?
DAVID KRIEGER
A note recently came to the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation that said: "Are you folks out of your minds? The nuclear genie is out of the bottle and isn’t going back in. Shortly even non-state actors will have nukes! Quit wasting your time on this silly dream....
Making the Imperial Army More Diverse
STEPHANIE VAN HOOK And MICHAEL NAGLER
In 1967 Martin Luther King, Jr. gave a speech at Ebenezer Baptist Church called "Beyond Vietnam," where he declared that his conscience would not allow him to remain silent on the question of Vietnam, on the horrors of war, on the threat of violence to our ...