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 CIA’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 April 2012
Secret British Colonial Archive Finally Released
GRAHAM MacPHEE
After his death, George Orwell’s terrifying vision in Nineteen Eighty-Four of a future in which the past could be erased and rewritten at will by a faceless bureaucracy was quickly appropriated in the US and Britain for the purposes of Cold War propaganda. The ...
Racism in the Postracial Nation
RON JACOBS
The Trayvon Martin case brought the ugly question of racism back into the conversation in the US.   After a period of false postracialism in the wake of Barack Obama’s election to the White House, this murder tore away the façade of harmony that US elites have been t...
Mexico’s False Dilemma
LAURA CARLSEN
Mexico is currently confronting a human rights crisis. Headlines document the overt violence that has claimed more ...
The Role of the Middle Class, Revisited
RODOLFO ACUÑA
For the last couple of weeks, I have been revisiting pieces that I’d written in the past. They express concerns that formed my own consciousness and they are the bulk of the over 200 articles that will compose my new book: “My Journey Out of Purgatory.” I h...
Israel’s Mental Illness
FRANKLIN LAMB
Beirut It may be that researchers would want to examine as long ago as the period from the 3rd century BC until the beginning of the 17th century in order to find a regime so frenetically building walls and barriers in a hopeless quest to hold onto stolen ...
Beltway Academics and the War Machine
CHRISTIAN SORENSEN
The Pentagon rewards beltway academics in exchange for scholarly support. Dr. Michael O’Hanlon and Dr. Robert Kagan, of the Brookings Institution, exemplify this symbiotic aggrandizement of power.   O’Hanlon On 26 March, Dr. M...
A Conspiracy of Whores
JOHN GRANT
Whore: (verb) To debase oneself by doing something for unworthy motives, typically to make money. ...
Helmsley and the “Little People”
SCOTT KLINGER
Twenty-nine years ago, billionaire hotel magnate Leona Helmsley told one of her housekeepers: “We don’t pay taxes; taxes are what the little people pay.” Her words set off a firestorm that spanned the political spectrum. Today, our tax syst...
GOP’s War on Women Backfires
MARK WEISBROT
The Republicans’ gamble that they could ride a backlash against the Obama administration’s efforts to increase the availability of contraception has gone terribly bad. It turns out that most Americans, especially women, agree that insurance companies should have to co...
Going Vegan
MISSY BEATTIE
“You need therapy,” my son said over the phone. I’d told him I’d gone vegan, saying vee-guhn as it’s pronounced at dictionary.com when you click the little ...
Spreading Out Sperm
FARZANA VERSEY
He makes bastards. No one is quite willing to use the term, for not only does he portray himself as a Samaritan, but also a sort of sexual evangelist. Instead of the Word, he doles out semen. You’ve probably read the reports about Dutchman Ed Houben, who has fath...
Farewell to Levon
PETER STONE BROWN
It was in the spring 47 years ago that my brother brought home an album by blues singer John Hammond called ...
The Labor Scandal at Bologna’s Film Library
ALESSANDRA V. MASSAGRANDE
Bologna, Italy. Some of the biggest contradictions of Italy are the lack of transparency in the labor market and particularly in hiring in public sector or with public participation where the idea of transparency should be a priority. An example of ...
Talk to the Animals
CHARLES R. LARSON
It is not inaccurate to say that in Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain (1912), once the ch...
Opera Domani
DAVID YEARSLEY
Since 1997 a vital organization called Opera domani (Opera Tomorrow)  has been filling Italy’s opera houses with enthusiastic school children ten years old and younger and proving that a medium too-often stereotyped as histrionic, ridiculous and, worst of all, boring, ...
Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal and Orloski
POETS' BASEMENT
Leo’s Crows by LUIS CUAUHTEMOC BERRIOZABAL The crows imbibe your words in the sun soaked morning. From the wires they sing their drunken winter song making us rise from our slumber. W...
Dylan and the Band, Isle of Wight, 1969
WEBSITE OF THE WEEKEND
Dylan and the Band, Isle of Wight, 1969 ...
The Iron Man
URI AVNERY
“In blood and sweat / A race will arise to us / Proud and generous and brutal…” Thus wrote Vladimir (Ze’ev) Jabotinsky, the founder of extreme right-wing Zionism, who was also a writer and a poet. Present-day Likud leaders see him as their forefather, much ...
Farewell Sarkozy
PHILIPPE MARLIERE
Days before the first round of the French presidential election, Nicolas Sarkozy was addressing his supporters at a mass rally in Paris. His final words sounded desperate: “French people, help me!” The conservative candidate looked tense and the public mood wa...
Iran’s Nuclear Fatwa
GARETH PORTER
The Barack Obama administration’s new interest in the 2004 religious verdict, or “fatwa”, by Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei banning the possession of nuclear weapons, long dismissed by national security officials, has prompted the ...
No Exit in EU
JEFFREY SOMMERS
Peter Praet, Chief Economist of the European Central Bank, defended the ECB’s policies at Levy Institute’s annual Minsky meeting at the Ford Foundation this past week in New York that. In his remarks, he retreaded the EU’s wheels with the same rhetoric of inflation ...
The Shocking Suspension of Dr. Price
GAIL DINES
As colleges become more corporate, we are hearing more and more stories of academics being sanctioned for having the audacity to speak out against corporate malfeasance. Not only does this limit the free speech of academics, it also serves to scare teachers into adhering ...
America, for God’s Sake, Pay Your Whores!
JOHN ESKOW
Some years back, when I was doing location rewrites on a movie, I was cornered on the set by an anguished limo driver.  We were in a Spanish-speaking nation, and my command of that loving tongue is poor, but I was able to glean a rough idea of what was troubling the driv...
Of Ghost Dances and the Young
SAM SMITH
The departure of two Ricks and Michelle Bachmann, the collapse of Gingrich, as well as governors Scott, Walker, LePage, Kasich and Perry all having approval ratings below 45%, suggests that the  Tea Party was somewhat overrated by the corporate media. It also gives me co...
Hardware Over People at the Pentagon (Again)
FRANKLIN C. SPINNEY
For a good example of the Military-Industrial-Congressional Complex’s (MICC’s) value system — which is hardware before ideas and people — read ...
The New Math
ROGER BONAIR-AGARD
A few days ago, Ozzie Guillen, manager of the Florida Marlins baseball team, and a Venezuelan National, said in a Time magazine interview, “I respect Fidel Castro. I love Fidel Castro. I respect Fidel Castro. Many people have tried to kill Fidel Castro in the las...
The Prison Labor Complex
STEVE FRASER and JOSHUA B. FREEMAN
Sweatshop labor is back with a vengeance. It can be found across broad stretches of the American economy and around the world.  Penitentiaries have become a niche market for such work.  The ...
China’s Rise, America’s Fall
WEBSITE OF THE DAY
China’s Rise, America’s Fall ...
They Are Still Killing Trade Union Leaders
DAVID MACARAY
Make no mistake.  We had some ugly anti-labor mischief of our own during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, where union organizers, political radicals, suspected anarchists and Bolsheviks were blackballed, beaten, imprisoned, deported, murdered...
The Afghan Train Wreck
CONN HALLINAN
The recent decision by the Taliban and one of its allies to withdraw from peace talks with Washington underlines the train wreck the U.S. is headed for in Afghanistan. Indeed, for an administration touted as sophisticated and intelligent, virtually every decision the Whit...
Obama’s Atomic Solyndra
HARVEY WASSERMAN
The future of nuclear power now hangs on a single decision by President Obama—and us. His Office of Management and Budget could cave to the unsustainable demands of reactor builders who cannot handle the standard terms of a loan agreement. Or he could ...
Breivik’s Defense
BARRY LANDO
As the trial of Norwegian mass murdered Andres Breivik opens in Stockholm, we look on in horror at his arrogant posturing, his clenched fist salute, his regret that he didn’t kill more that seventy-seven. But the fact is that this outrageous young Norwegian, is in no wa...
Netanyahu’s Real Fear
AKIVA ELDAR
A recent skit on the sketch comedy “Eretz Nehederet” featured a “debate” about the Iranian nuclear program between U.S. and Israeli leaders. After some discussion, U.S. President Barack Obama accedes to the position of Prime Minister Benjami...
Fear, Loathing and Electoral Politics in Mexico
KENT PATERSON
Mexico’s federal election campaign officially kicked off March 30, but the contest arguably began in earnest days earlier when Pope Benedict XVI visited the right-wing stronghold of Guanajuato state. In a story worthy of Mexican surrealism, the daily La Jornada chronicl...
An Interview With Dr. Mustafa Barghouti
ELSA RASSBACH
On March 20th, I interviewed Dr. Mustafa Barghouti about the plans for a new international initiative for Land Day, March 30th: a Global March to Jerusalem, to bring together in one nonviolent action all of the Palestinian political parties and civil society organi...
Acute on Chronic
KATHLEEN PEINE
There’s always a lot of background noise in our American culture, situations that most take for granted to be the normal course of things. One of these topics is our absolute and utter lack of universal health care. Much hand-wringing and dismay in regard to this realit...
Young Americans Under Siege
Rev. JESSE JACKSON
Rick Santorum’s presidential campaign had one major effect: It exposed what has become known as the “war on women,” the Republican right’s opposition to contraception, family planning and the Lilly Ledbetter Equal Pay Act. Too bad Santorum decided to ...
The Folly of Beef Festivals
FARZANA VERSEY
If a group of Christians decided to hold a pork festival as part of their cultural assertion in Hyderabad, a city in South India that is now in the news for the ...
Kathy Kelly and the High-Stepping Military Police
WEBSITE OF THE DAY
Kathy Kelly and the High-Stepping Military Police ...
For You, a Thousand Times Over
KATHY KELLY
At the start of The Kite Runner, a novel by Khaled Hosseini later adapted for film, a brave and sel...
The Left Radicalism of Jean-Luc Mélenchon
PHILIPPE MARLIERE
Superbly ignored by the media until recently, Jean-Luc Mélenchon is the new flavour of the day in the French presidential campaign. In truth, while trying to account for his dramatic rise in the polls – latest reports put him at 17% of the vote – most commentators co...
Health Care in an Age of American Decline
RAVI KATARI
“A heart that’s full up like a landfill.  A job that slowly kills you.  Bruises that won’t heal.  You look so tired, unhappy.  Bring down the government, they don’t speak for us.  I’ll take a quiet life, a handshake of carbon monoxide....
Occupy Oakland, Permitted Protest, and Police Repression
MIKE KING
As the Occupy movement around the country begins to get more involved in immigrant struggles, or around the struggles of people of color more generally, complicated questions of race and risk, tactics and differential legal consequences for people of color are arising.  ...
Different Bats for Different Brats
LAURA FLANDERS
For all the shameful sucking up to multi-millionaire mom Ann Romney after Democratic pundit Hilary Rosen accused her of never having worked “a day in her life,” the reality is neither Republicans nor Democrats treat most parenting as work, and thousands of poor women ...
North Korea’s Failed Fireworks
JOHN FEFFER
In early February, Iran launched its third successful commercial satellite in three years. The Barack Obama administration, the United Nations, and the news media barely acknowledged the accomplishment. North Korea, on the other hand, has created a furor each of the three...
Trolling for Kids
DAVE LINDORFF
In the militarist society in which we live in these latter days of American Empire, all soldiers are “noble heroes” who have signed up at “great personal sacrifice” to “defend our freedoms,...
Poetry Sightings
LINH DINH
It is Poetry Month again, but most Americans wouldn’t know it, preoccupied as they are with forechecks, Mitt, Kim, Lady, Pippa and Doritos Locos Tacos. What a far cry from what Walt Whitman envisioned, since he actually thought our country would value poets more than an...
Feeding Death Squads?
THOMAS MOUNTAIN
While southern Ethiopia and the Ogaden continues to suffer from the worst drought and famine in 60 years the UN’s World Food Program (WFP) has been turning over all its food aid for the region to the Ethiopian military which uses it to feed the paramilitary death squads...
Punishing Cuba 50 Years On
BEN SCHREINER
With the media happily fixated on the sex scandal swirling around the U.S. Secret Service, the Sixth Summit of the Americas held in Cartagena, Colombia over the weekend was left to collapse with little notice.  The inability of the some 30 heads of American stat...
Israel’s No Fly List
WEBSITE OF THE DAY
Israel’s No Fly List ...