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Archives from January 2011
The Law of the Jungle
DEEPAK TRIPATHI
Now this is the Law of the Jungle—as old and as true as the sky; And the Wolf that shall keep it may prosper, but the Wolf that shall break it must die. As the creeper that girdles the tree-trunk the Law runneth forward and back— F...
Why Military Spending is Untouchable
ANDREW BACEVICH
In defense circles, "cutting" the Pentagon budget has once again become a topic of conversation. Americans should not confuse that talk with reality. Any cuts exacted will at most reduce the rate of growth. The essential facts remain: U.S. military outlays ...
Bernard-Henri Lévy Indicted!
TARIQ ALI
On January 28, activists belonging to the PIR (Parti des Indigènes de la République) are organizing a trial of Bernard-Henri Lévy in the old PCF/CGT stronghold of Saint Denis. Norman Finkelstein and myself are the only non-French who are giving evidence against BH...
The Man in the Gray Woolen Suit
JOSÉ PERTIERRA
A new stage in the trial of Luis Posada Carriles in El Paso began today. Thus far, the prosecution has put into evidence only the lies that the Defendant made during hearings regarding his application for asylum in 2005 and interviews about his application for citize...
Why Do Americans Take It in the Face?
RUSSELL MOKHIBER
All throughout the Arab world, the despots are on the run. Fueled by Facebook and Twitter, the Arab street is aflame. In the United States, instead of fueling the resistance, social media is like a hypnotic drug. ...
Obama and Our Disney Nukes
HARVEY WASSERMAN
Barack Obama is about to address a nation whose greatest potential liability is its Disneyesque illusion of atomic power. Despite the nation’s huge debts and fears of foreign terror, America’s 104 licensed reactors are the most dang...
No Words for Egypt, Mr. President?
LAURA FLANDERS
In the State of the Union speech, Barack Obama did get applause for saying that the US stands with the people of Tunisia. Now, he didn’t mention the two decades of support the US had given the dictatorship. The President did not have anything to say abou...
Corruption at the Supreme Court
DON MONKERUD
Tea Partiers, Republicans, and protectors of public morality are right about corruption in government. The only problem is they are looking in the wrong place. Their real target is closer to home-a shock to some but that’s what new investi...
A Left / Tea Party Alliance?
STEWART J. LAWRENCE
Ever since the Tea Party first emerged on the national scene as a "citizens protest" against health care reform, skeptics on the left have treated it as a stalking horse for the right.  And why not? Surveys show that an overwhelmingly majority of Tea P...
The Tip of the Iceberg
JOSÉ PERTIERRA
Several heated clashes between the defense and prosecution attorneys dominated the morning session in the seventh day of Luis Posada Carriles’ trial in El Paso. Before Judge Kathleen Cardone convened the jury, prosecutor Jerome Teresinski outlined a number of c...
Assange and Posada in the Propaganda System
EDWARD S. HERMAN And DAVID PETERSON
By an historical coincidence, both Julian Assange and Luis Posada Carriles were brought before Western courts around the same time in late 2010 and early 2011—Assange in Britain and Posada in the United States. The contrast in their treatment by the U.S.-Anglo syst...
The "Corrupt Betrayers" of the Palestinian People
MICHAEL NEUMANN
The Al-Jazeera leaks concerning Palestine have provided lots of new material for the tough guys of the Israel/Palestine conflict. These hard cases have been around at least since the Oslo Accords of 1993. Most of them are university types – graduate students an...
Tells the Facts, Names the Names
JONATHAN COOK
Nazareth. For more than a decade, since the collapse of the Camp David talks in 2000, the mantra of Israeli politics has been the same: "There is no Palestinian partner for peace." This week, the first of hundreds of leaked con...
The Persecution of Pvt. Bradley Manning
DAVE LINDORFF
Looks can be deceiving. When you see photos of Army Specialist Bradley Manning, the fresh, slightly pudgy-faced 23-year old private who has spent the last seven months in solitary confinement, first in Kuwait and later at the Marine base at Qu...
Dying to be a Carpenter
DAVID CORREIA
Las Vegas has always been a dangerous place to be a carpenter. By the summer of 2008, workplace accidents at the $10 billion CityCenter project cost six carpenters their lives. As if the constant threat of injury on the job wasn’t enough, it turns out unemploym...
The Politics of Violence in America
THOMAS H. NAYLOR
Although I am no fan of either Sarah Palin or the Tea Party crowd, blaming them for the tragic shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson is patently absurd.  Equally problematic is the idea that the Tucson massacre was caused by the uncivil nature ...
Prisoners on Their Own Island
MIKE WHITNEY
MW–In your article in CounterPunch titled "Haiti and the Aid Racket", you said that "The catastrophe in Haiti has revealed the worst aspects of the U.S. government and the NGO aid industry". Can you explain w...
Toward a Global Solution Outside the System
SERGIO FERRARI
The World Social Forum (WSF) is practically the only space for convergence of social movements on a planetary scale, so it is essential to continue strengthening it. This is the stance of Éric Toussaint, global justice analyst, who knows the World Social Forum from ...
The Problems with the ‘Gorgon Stare’ Surveillance System
WINSLOW T. WHEELER
After Secretary of Defense Gates criticized the Air Force in 2008 for providing insufficient support for the Army in combat, Gorgon Stare development appeared in DOD budget documents as a response. It is a "wide-area airborne surveillance system" typically ...
Reefer Madness Forever
FRED GARDNER
"Marijuana’s Role in the Tucson Shooting" was the extremely misleading headline on an article by Joe Califano that the Huffington Post ran Jan. 21. Why is that supposedly liberal site disseminating propaganda by a leading Drug Warrior? There is no evi...
Mental Illness on the Factory Floor
DAVID MACARAY
Whether or not the accounts of Jared Loughner’s erratic behavior prior to his Tucson murders were “exaggerated,” they evoked some potent memories.  As a former union officer, I represented two young men who were diagnosed as psychotic.  Bo...
I Have Been Summoned to Appear Before a Grand Jury
MAUREEN MURPHY
I have been summoned to appear before a federal grand jury in Chicago on January 25. But I will not testify, even at the risk of being put in jail for contempt of court, because I believe that our most fundamental rights as citizens are at stake. I am one of ...
The Palestine Papers
KATHLEEN CHRISTISON
Many people told them so — told them, meaning told the United States and Israel and even the overeager Palestinian leadership, that the Oslo agreement in1993 wasn’t fair, that it made too many demands of the Palestinians and virtually no enforceable deman...
The Overuse of Antibiotics
RALPH NADER
Reading a recent issue of Public Citizen’s excellent Health Letter titled "Know When Antibiotics Work," I recalled the recent tragic loss of a healthy history professor who was rushed to a fine urban hospital, with a leading infectious disease special...
Is the Vermont Health Plan Single Payer?
RUSSELL MOKHIBER
The Governor of Vermont calls it single payer. The Harvard professor who came up with it calls it single payer. But single payer activist Dr. Margaret Flowers says it’s not single payer. Flowers ...
First, the Lies
JOSÉ PERTIERRA
This is a perjury case, the prosecutor announced during his opening remarks on the first day of trial. His strategy is to first show the jury the lies the Luis Posada Carriles told to Immigration authorities, and then, perhaps early next week, tell the jury the truth...
Why the Obama Birth Certificate Story Won’t Go Away
SAM SMITH
Just because a story shouldn’t matter doesn’t mean that it won’t. A case in point is the controversy about Barack Obama’s birthplace. The standard liberal response to this issue has been to dismiss those questioning the president’s place...
Where Urban Legends Come to Life
BOADIBA
Images, flashbacks, nightmares materialize behind our eyelids; we can’t escape our own eyes: The armored car lifts four feet off the ground, then comes down hard blowing all four tires with a huge sound. A corpse han...
Milton Rogovin, Portraitist to the People
JOANN WYPIJEWSKI
Milton Rogovin, one of the great documentary photographers of the twentieth century, died at his home in Buffalo, New York, on January 18. He was 101 years old – like many an old Red, outstripping the reaper far beyond the average limit for less kinetically idealis...
Art’s Theater
JOSÉ PERTIERRA
"Your Honor, I ask myself whether Attorney Hernández is trying to confuse and obfuscate the jury," Prosecutor Jerome Teresinski complained in annoyance this morning. The problem arose when the prosecutor tried to introduce into evidence the naturalization ...
The Idiocy of the Ivory Study
M. G. PIETY
I just finished reading a review by Tom Nagel in The New York Review of Books of books by Sissela and Derek Bok on happiness and I can tell you one person who isn’t happy–me. Did you know that one of what Nagel considers the "interesting results" of...
Demographic Nonsense
DEAN BAKER
The debate over the demographic trends in the United States and other wealthy countries can be described a debate between those who care about our children and those who want more of them. This is apparent once a little bit of logic is applied to the tales of demogra...
The Mind of Jared Lee Loughner
CLANCY SIGAL
What a bunch of garbage; liberal, democrat, conservative, republican. It’s all there to control you! … I’m sick of it." – from ...
The Most Business-Friendly President Ever?
MIKE WHITNEY
On Tuesday, Barack Obama made the case for easing regulations in an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal. The article, titled "Toward a 21st-Century Regulatory System", was accompanied by a caricature of a scissor-wielding businessman slashing-away at red tape,...
Seroquel’s Toll
MARTHA ROSENBERG
Even though AstraZeneca’s antipsychotic Seroquel is the fifth best-selling medication in the US according to drugs.com, exceeded only by Lipitor, Nexium, Plavix and Advair diskus, its safety, effectiveness, clinical trial and promotion records are highly checke...
Is GE’s Jeffrey Immelt Really an American?
DAVE LINDORFF
If President Barack Obama had announced this week that he was appointing Japan’s Takanobu Ito, president and CEO of Honda, to head his new Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, one can imagine the shock wave that would go through the American body politic. ...
What Arabs Could Learn From Japan
BOUTHAINA SHAABAN
In Japan, where the sun eternally shines first on a lively and energetic people, who faced nuclear bombs, experienced the humiliation of American occupation and the ugliest forms of destruction, but who rose up to the challenge with the determination to build and the...
The War on Public Workers
STEVE BREYMAN
Government worker bashing is nearing a crescendo as we stare into the abyss of American public finances. There’s nary a mayor, governor or president who hasn’t found his or her work force an irresistible target of criticism for "greedy unions," ...
Inside the Charnel House
LINH DINH
Kermit Gosnell spent more than 30 years performing illegal abortions. Many of his clients were 6, 7 or even 8 months pregnant. If babies were born alive, as they often were, he killed them by snipping their necks. He punctured women’s uteruses, left fetal bits ...
Black Swan, Dark Power
DAVID YEARSLEY
Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan, which will doubtless figure prominently in the Academy Awards nominations to be issued next week, is a horror flick en pointe: terrifyingly claustrophobic, often painful, massively melodramatic, and ultimately self-destructive.&nb...
Occupation Has No Future
DAVID ZLUTNICK
In the Fall of 2009 I had the privilege of following a delegation of US veterans and war resisters traveling to Israel/Palestine to meet with their Israeli counterparts in an effort to strengthen connections between the US and Israeli anti-militarist movements and to...
Insurgent Anthropologies
CHRISTOPHER CARRICO
Just as it is ironic for the name of the fight against Western cultural imperialism to be invoked in defense of oppressive traditions and inherited privilege in the non-Western world, it is also ironic for the protection of Western values to be invoked in defense of ...
The US Has a Choice in Tunisia
NICOLA NASSER
The ongoing Tunisian Intifada (uprising) cannot yet quite be termed a revolution; Tunisians are still revolting, aspiring for bread and freedom. This Intifada will go down in history as a revolution if it gets either bread or freedom and as a great revolution if it g...
Will the Tea Party Congress Block Justice for Black Farmers?
HEATHER GRAY
In November 2010 Congress finally passed a bill that would appropriate monies for the lawsuit filed by blacks against the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). It was a long time coming.  The passage was not without conflict in the Senate and critics i...
Into the Future
MISSY COMLEY BEATTIE
Astonishing theater unfolded in Washington, DC when former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama and former Vice Presidents Richard Cheney and Joe Biden were taken into custody and transported to a courthouse soon after arriving in the United States. Photographe...
The Depth of the Betrayal
STEPHEN FLEISCHMAN
On December 17, 2010, President Obama signed into law tax breaks for the rich, continuing for two more years the infamous tax breaks enacted by President George W. Bush. Obama’s rationale, it was the only way he could get an extension of unemployment insurance ...
What Goes Around, Comes Around
DAVID MACARAY
In his June, 2010, CounterPunch interview (which he expands upon in his excellent book “Aftershock”), former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich notes that the challenge facing the American economy isn’t simply to provide jobs, jobs, and more jobs. ...
The Lead Prosecutor in the Cuban Five Case Refused a DHS Request to Press Criminal Charges Against Posada Carriles
JOS? PERTIERRA
The U.S. Attorney who prosecuted the Cuban Five in Miami, Caroline Heck Miller, refused to press criminal charges against Luis Posada Carriles despite a request to do so from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), testified DHS attorney Gina Garrett-Jackson today in c...
Generalizing Tunisia
RAMZY BAROUD
When faced with problems, most authoritarian regimes maintain a policy of rigidity when the appropriate response would be flexibility, political wisdom and concessions. This policy gives authoritarian leaders their ability to control their populations to serve the in...
An Ecological Bomb in the Mediterranean
MICHAEL LEONARDI
While the global and Italian national media focuses on allegations of Berlusconi’s latest sexual exploits including reports of hedonistic orgies with teenage prostitutes at his luxurious villas, the much more devastating story of the intentional sinking of ship...