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Archives from May 2012
Should NATO Be Handling World Security?
LAWRENCE S. WITTNER
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (better known as NATO) is in the news once again thanks to a NATO summit meeting in Chicago over the weekend of May 19-20 and to large public demonstrations in Chicago against this military pact. NATO’s website defines the a...
Military Orchestrates Egypt’s Presidential Elections
CARL FINAMORE
The military was the lone Hosni Mubarak-era institution to survive the revolution that toppled the country’s longest-reigning dictator last year. It remains the real power to this day and is skillfully orchestrating the May 23-24 presidential elections to paint a democr...
The Rise of Re-Use
RALPH NADER
Last week I read that the glitzy world of virtual reality created instant multi-millionaires and several billionaires when Facebook went public selling shares. Last week I also noted the important real world problem of some 250 million tons of solid waste a year in...
The End in Afghanistan is Totally Predictable
DAVE LINDORFF
John Kerry, back before he was a pompous windsurfing Senate apologist for American empire, back when he wore his hair long and was part of a movement of returned US military veterans speaking out against the continuation of the Vietnam War, famously asked the members of t...
Who Owns the Origin of Life?
SUZAN MAZUR
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The Looting of Nigeria
THOMAS MOUNTAIN
As western oil companies loot some $140 Billion a year of Nigeria’s black gold two thirds of the country’s 100 million people live on less than $2 a day. Nigeria’s “official” oil production figures show about 3 million barrels a day being pumped from thei...
Seven Sins of the Democrats
MICHAEL BRENNER
The Democrats are in a shambles. Progressives, ne liberals, are in particularly dire straits. They have been marginalized and their influence on public policy wanes even as events reconfirm their values, their philosophy and their historic cause. They face an election tha...
Repealing the Wilderness Act?
MATTHEW KOEHLER
“The purpose of the Wilderness Act is to preserve the wilderness character of the areas to be included in the wilderness system, not to establish any particular use.” – Howard Zahniser, chief author of the Wilderness Act On...
Breaking the Cycle of Addiction in Prison
ANTHONY PAPA
An amicus brief was filed by the Drug Policy Alliance o...
Stirring Canada From Its Slumber
BENJAMIN CAMPBELL
Tens of thousands of students took to the streets of Montreal again on Saturday, in defiance of the Quebec government’s Bill 78, which aimed to legally curtail their rights to protest. As has become increasingly common, the students were greeted by police responses of t...
National Registry of Exonerations
WEBSITE OF THE DAY
National Registry of Exonerations ...
Bet on Collapse
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
The US financial system and, probably, the financial system of Europe, like the police, no longer serves a useful social purpose. In the US the police have proven themselves to be a greater threat to public safety than private sector criminals.  I just googled “...
The Waltz of the Zombie Banks
MIKE WHITNEY
It’s the same everywhere. The banks are keeping houses off the market to trick people into believing that prices have hit bottom. But prices haven’t hit bottom, in fact, they still have a long way to go. So, what’s  going on here; what do the banks hope...
The Making of Egypt’s President
ESAM AL-AMIN
Ever since the toppling of Egypt’s former dictator Hosni Mubarak, the United States has been very nervous with regard to its former client state. Likewise, most Israeli leaders have been sounding the alarms, warning that the peace treaty with Egypt is in danger and that...
The Age of Competing Nationalities
PATRICK COCKBURN
The crises in Europe and the Middle East are very different but they are beginning to cross-infect each other, creating a general mood of uncertainty and fear. In the Middle East, the Arab Spring was at first seen as wholly positive, as dictatorships and police states tum...
The Meaning of the Nakba
NASEER ARURI
During the middle of May, Zionists celebrate an event that they call the War of Independence. The same occasion is observed by Palestinians, who call it al-Nakba, meaning the catastrophe, which began with the internal displacement of some 200,000 Palestinians, reac...
The Austerity of the Affluent
P. SAINATH
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee’s stirring call for austerity tugs at the national tear ducts.  Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has pleaded for it in the past and watched his flock embrace it creatively. With the finance ministry even acting on Dr. Singh’s call in 20...
White Living
LINH DINH
Outside the Gallery, Philadelphia’s low-class shopping mall, Jimbo si...
The Tide is Turning Against Austerity
DEEPAK TRIPATHI
Recent elections in France and Greece have generated a good deal of comment, suggesting that the years of center-right governance in Europe may be coming to an end. The defeat of President Nicolas Sarkozy of France by the Socialist candidate Francois Hollande, and the col...
Facebook and the 100 Billion
BINOY KAMPMARK
Investors that shoot for IPO allocations needn’t worry that a high stock price overvalues the company if they are confident they can find a ‘greater fool’ willing to pay more. ...
Racism in Lebanon
FRANKLIN LAMB
Beirut As many visitors to Lebanon can attest, some Lebanese have the rather charming habit of asking them, “Do you love Lebanon?”  One assumes they actually mean to inquire if the visitor likes Lebanon and is enjoying their visit. ...
Police Entrapment of Nonviolent Movements
JAKE OLZEN
The old trope of the bomb-throwing anarchist is back in the news, with a round-up in Ohio on May 1 and the ...
The Strangest Story of the Afghan War
WEBSITE OF THE DAY
The Strangest Story of the Afghan War ...
Brave New World, Brave New Majority
ALEXANDER COCKBURN
The news is in. White births are no longer a majority in the United States. The Bureau of the Census confirms that non-Hispanic whites accounted for 49.6 of all births  in the year ending July,  2011, while minorities including Hispanics, blacks, Asians and those of mix...
The New Protest
URI AVNERY
Rabin Square in Tel Aviv has seen many demonstrations, but none quite like last Saturday’s. It has nothing to do with the event which gave the square its name: the huge rally for peace at the end of which Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated. It was different in every ...
American Empire and the Future
PAUL L. ATWOOD
The Great Recession is the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression and, like the aftermath of Katrina, or the BP calamity, or the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan, is a man-made disaster. Many signs point to worse ...
The True Costs of Bank Crises
ROB URIE
In March 2010 Andrew Haldane, Executive Director for Financial Stability at the Bank of England, estimated that the financial crisis that began in 2008 will ultimately cost the world economy between $60 trillion and $200 trillion in lost production (...
The American Press and the Middle East
JAMES ABOUREZK
In the May 3 edition of the International Herald Tribune (but not its domestic sister publication, The New York Times), Raja Shehadeh wrote a personal observation resulting from his experience as a human rights worker in Palestine. Here are two paragraphs from his...
Justice, Injustice and the Cuban Five Case
SAUL LANDAU
I sit on a gray plastic chair, facing a tiny, gray, plastic table and another empty, gray, plastic chair, waiting for Gerardo Hernandez in the visiting room of the maximum-security federal pen in Victorville, California. Next to me, in similar seating arrangements, a midd...
The Fine Art of Political Backstabbing
CLANCY SIGAL
Jerry Brown, my California state’s Democratic governor, is a crushing disappointment.  We voted for him over the former Ebay CEO, rightwing Republican Meg Whitman, who promised to fire 40,000 public workers and end welfare, mainly because Brown trailed nostalgic clouds...
The Case of Clarence Aaron
JOHN DEAN
On May 14, 2012, The Washington Post’s headline reported “Inmate still in prison after facts kept from Bush team.”  The story, which was based on material developed by the public-interest investigative journalism of ...
Dropping Planes, Not Bombs
DAVE LINDORFF
The Iranian military must be enjoying the latest spectacle of Pentagon waste and bungling. Only a few weeks ago, the US attempted to ramp up the pressure on Iran by deploying to the Persian Gulf at the Al Dhafra Air Base in the United Arab Emirates, just across the...
F-22 In A Dogfight
WINSLOW T. WHEELER
You may have noticed that the Air Force’s prized F-22 fighter – the crown jewel of American air dominance – has had some negative press lately. The bad news peaked Tuesday when Defense Secretary Leon Panetta ordered flight restrictions on the $400 millio...
50 Percent of the 99 Percent
LAURA CARLSEN
What’s 50 percent of 99 percent? This isn’t a math quiz. To put the question in non-numerical terms: where are women in the global economic crisis? The movement of the 99 percent that began in the United States made visible the human beings who suffer th...
The Arab Spring is Part of the General Strike of the South
PRATYUSH CHANDRA
Vijay Prashad’s new book, Arab Spring, Libyan Winter ...
Savage Incongruities
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
On November 24 1945, the American photographer Lee Miller walked into the newly liberated Buchenwald death camp. Dead bodies were stacked in rotting mounds. The furnaces that had burned human flesh were still warm to her touch. The stench of shit and death clotted the air...
Neocons Plotting New Preemptive Strike on History
RAY McGOVERN
With the 45th anniversary of the Six-Day War of June 1967 coming early next month, With the 45th anniversary of the Six-Day War of June 1967 coming early next month, pro-Israel pundits like syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer are again promoti...
Living for the City
RON JACOBS
I live in the small city of Burlington Vermont in the United States. Most every day I walk through the city’s main public square known by its street name. Church Street.  A public street that has been semi-privatized, the street is the center of a struggle between ...
Peacemaking Without Mediators
NICOLA NASSER
A surplus of mediators have been around all the time, including the heavy weight Quartet of the UN, U.S., EU and Russia, as well as heaps of terms of reference of UNSC resolutions, bilateral signed accords and “roadmaps,” in addition to marathon bilateral talks that h...
Mitt and the Seed of Cain
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
A great devotee of the Gospel of Getting On. — G.B. Shaw,  Mrs. Warren’s Profession I hope he remembers them.  The explanations that is.  They could be handy if anyone ever asks him about his days as a missionary....
Blown Up Election
LINH DINH
If family values are in the news, you can be sure an American election is just around the corner. According to Republicans, gay marriage is a glory hole puncturing the sanctity of the nuke-clear family, so for backing such a ghastly proposal, with ring, no less, Obama is ...
No Freedoms to Hate Us For Anymore
MISSY BEATTIE
Remember that they (the evil ones) hate our freedoms. Remember, too, that in the aftermath of 9/11, the war criminals told us this repeatedly.  Here’s an ...
Dimons Are Forever
BRIAN CLOUGHLEY
Our lives are at the mercy of politicians, economists and bureaucrats, over none of whom we  have the slightest control. Politicians, world-wide, have proved themselves majestically incompetent in trying to run the affairs of those unfortunate countries whose popu...
Is Jeffrey Feltman Iran’s Best Friend in Lebanon?
FRANKLIN LAMB
Beirut  Key Iranian and American officials arrived in Lebanon last week to assess the strength of their local allies in the fast approaching and crucial legislative elections, the escalating spillover effects of the Syrian uprising in North Leba...
In The Name Of My Father
PHIL ROCKSTROH
On May 1, after a day of May Day activities on the streets and avenues of Manhattan, my wife and I and a troop of other OWS celebrants marched into Zuccotti Park to jubilant exhortations of “welcome home” from a throng of fellow occupiers. The next day, my wif...
(Job) Interview With a Vegan
RANDY SHIELDS
(I can’t believe it. This woman hates me and I hate her — on sight. And I need this job.) (Why does personnel keep sending me these losers… If I ever get a six-three 220 pound orderly I’ll fall over dead. I want linebac...
Born Unequal in Colombia
CHARLES R. LARSON
Tolstoy’s famous observation—“Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way”—takes on new meaning in Héctor Abad’s ...