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Archives from June 2013
Treason
ROB URIE
U.S. military adventures have historically combined imperial ambition—the acquisition of territory and colonies, limiting the reach of competing empires and ‘acquiring’ economic resources—‘natural’ resources, existing economic infrastructure and labor, under a...
The Clintons and the Rich Women
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
President-in-waiting Hillary Clinton has never addressed her role in the midnight pardon of billionaire fugitive Marc Rich, who died this week. In fact, she’s rarely been asked her opinion on the free pass given to one of the world’s most wanted fugitives...
The Harrowing Tale of Ahmed Abu Ali
ESAM AL-AMIN
This month commemorates the sad tenth anniversary of the Abu Ali family’s nightmare. Their son’s ordeal began as one of the earliest and ugliest extraordinary rendition cases by the U.S. government. Ahmed Abu Ali was born to Palestinian parents in Houston, Texa...
Horror on the Roof of the World
UZMA ALSAM KHAN
Among the many casualties of the War on Terror, one of the most unmourned is the human impulse to revere beauty. Where does it come from, that sense of wonder upon witnessing the migration of butterflies, or a vast, kaleidoscopic sea, or a mountain too tall and steep for ...
Why Stocks Rise on Bad News
MIKE WHITNEY
Now there’s something you don’t see every day. On Wednesday, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that the world’s biggest economy grew at a measly 1.8 percent, far-below analysts most pessimistic predictions. The news that the US econom...
The Unrelenting Economic War on Cuba
DANIEL KOVALIK
If it weren’t bad enough that the U.S. has imposed an illegal embargo against Cuba for over 50 years, it has also tried to prevent those interested in learning about this embargo (more accurately termed ablockade because the U.S. aggressively enforces it against...
Obama’s Grave Threat to Democratic Governance
ANDREW LEVINE
In the mid-70s, when de-Nixonification was a national priority, a not yet spineless Congress made it possible for Americans to access the files that their government kept on their activities.  Over the years, Administrations intent on keeping their foul deeds secret did ...
Return to Homs
PATRICK COCKBURN
Homs, Syria. Khalid is too frightened of travelling the 100 miles from Homs to Damascus to ask officials if they know what happened to his three sons, who disappeared 16 months ago as government troops over-ran the rebel stronghold of Baba Amr. He has not ...
Total Surveillance
KATE EPSTEIN
Although Edward Snowden’s recent revelations about the breadth and scope of the surveillance-industrial complex didn’t add many facts to the public record of the ongoing post-9/11 security state saga, it certainly brought the issue to the forefront, forcing everyone t...
An Epidemic of Military Suicides
TOM McNAMARA
Box me up and ship me home Pin my medals upon my chest Tell my mom I’ve done my best – Marine Corps Cadence Rennes, France. On June 10th of this year, Daniel Somers, a veteran of more than 40...
Power Grab by the Roberts Five
ROB HAGER
Bravo Greg Palast ["Ku Klux Kourt Kills King...
The Carpet-Bombing of the American Mind
NORMAN POLLACK
USG (we have become a nation of acronyms, my sentimental favorites being NSA, CIA, JSOC, POTUS, the more acronymic the more  sinister, dangerous, anonymous, lacking in accountability) thinks—and acts—big, no selective application of surveillance to individuals...
Laissez Unfair
JASON HIRTHLER
As the new atheists have tirelessly rehearsed over the past half-decade, religion poisons everything and should be replaced by some sort of secular credo. Well, perhaps they haven’t noticed, but we’ve already got one. As grim and myopic as your rural madrassa or subur...
Is the US Playing With Gas in Syria?
EVAN TAYLOR
Istanbul is rioting, Syria is enflamed, and the Palestinians still do not have a state, but it may be that the real catalyst for action in the Mediterranean is coming from miles under the sea.  Based on discoveries made in the last five years, Israel, Cyprus, and other s...
The Dishonesties of Isaiah Berlin
TARIQ ALI
David Caute, author of Isaac and Isaiah: the Covert Punishment of a Cold War Heretic,  has long be...
Kerry and Chutzpah
URI AVNERY
IF YOU happen to bump into John Kerry at Ben Gurion Airport, you may wonder whether he is coming or going.  He may well be wondering himself. For many weeks now he has been devoting most of his precious time to meetings with Binyamin Netanyahu and Mahmoud Abbas, t...
Is Edward Snowden a Lawbreaker?
SHELDON RICHMAN
Most people believe that Edward Snowden, who has confirmed that the U.S. government spies on us, broke the law. Even many of his defenders concede this. While in one sense the statement “Snowden broke the law” may be trivially true, in another, deepe...
Will the Real Traitors Please Stand Up?
PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
It is hard to understand the fuss that Washington and its media whores are making over Edward Snowden.  We have known for a long time that the National Security Agency (NSA) has been spying for years without warrants on the communications of Americans and people througho...
The White House Threatens To End Aid if Palestine Joins the ICC
FRANKLIN LAMB
Beirut Fatou Bom Bensouda, the Gambian-born deputy prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), was never Washington’s first choice to succeed the inveterately self-promoting elitist ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo. And it is doubtful t...
The West Reserves the Right to Interfere
RAMZY BAROUD
The distance between Cairo’s Tahrir Square and Istanbul’s Taksim Square is impossibly long. There can be no roadmap sufficient enough to use the popular experience of the first in order to explicate the circumstances that lead to the other. Many have tried to i...
Affirmative Action for the White Minority
MATEO PIMENTEL
I have heard my Nana’s stories about how her grade school teachers in El Paso, Texas. They beat her and locked her in broom closets because she did not speak English. I have heard my Tata’s recollections about how Jim Crow. He couldn’t sit in certain parts of the mo...
The Allegory of the Crabs
RODOLFO ACUÑA
There are reoccurring themes in Chicana/o history such as the Sleeping Giant that echo the aspirations and frustrations of a community.  This expression says that somehow we are going to wake up as a people and become a political force, and consequently get equal opportu...
Snowden’s Case for Asylum
DENNIS J. BERNSTEIN
The US government is putting on a full-court press to track down, arrest and prosecute Edward Snowden for blowing the whistle on the National Security Agency’s massive collection of data on phone calls by Americans and Internet u...
Obama Isn’t Really Opposing Keystone XL
STEVE HORN
Believe it or not, the precise route of TransCanada’s Keystone XL tar sands pipeline ...
Israeli Propaganda, With Warts
LOUIS J. PROYECT
Out of a sense of duty to CounterPunch readers, I went to a press screening for “Israel: a Home Movie” that opens at the Film Forum in New York on July 10th. It might be more accurate to say that I went to monitor it since it had all the earmarks of a typic...
The (Hollowed) Politics Of Assaf’s Idolatry
HELGA TAWIL-SOURI
Now that no one buys our votes, the public has long since cast off its cares; the people that once bestowed commands, consulships, legions and all else, now meddles no more and longs eagerly for just two things – bread and circ...
Don’t Cry For Me, America
ADAM CHIMIENTI
I have yet to spend too much time digging into the corporate press reaction to the latest news from Ecuador, but I’m sure it’s not pretty. The South American country recently announced that it is giving up “unilaterally and irrevocably, the…customs b...
Small Lies to Conceal Greater Lies
CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI
“I responded in what I thought was the most truthful, or least untruthful manner, by saying no.” — James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence in an ...
The Disease of Caretaker Governments
BINOY KAMPMARK
A tear should be shed, though keep in the singular.  Australia’s first female Prime Minister Julia Gillard and probably last for some time, is no more.  Elected by unelected officials, she was knifed by the same individuals who encouraged the knifing of her rival, the...
A Radical Severing of Violence from Freedom
SAM KROP
There has recently been a great deal of debate around the topic of consent in sexual politics. Stakeholders in this debate have vocalized a wide range of positions, from positing the centrality of consent in questions of sexual ethics to considering the negative implicati...
Love Notes From a Charlatan
MISSY BEATTIE
I should unsubscribe to Organizing for Action (OFA)—a group supporting the election of Democrats, but I won’t, because I’m mining data from the obscenely insincere. The emails open with a clever ploy, use of the familiar, my given name. It’s almost intimate. Some ...
Rock n’ Roll Nation
RON JACOBS
It’s always interesting to see a history of a time and place in which one was at least a passive participant examined through academic perspective years later, especially by someone without any temporal connection. Sometimes the effort succeeds and sometimes it does...
Sleepwalking in Camden
LINH DINH
With 77,000 people, Camden has one public library left, and in a city where Walt Whitman spent 19 ...
More Than Doma
KEN KLIPPENSTEIN
The Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, an acronym I dearly love—it being one letter short of ‘dogma’—was struck down by the Supreme Court on Wednesday. This decision came just days after two other momentous rulings, in which the 5th Amendment right to re...
Fuck tha (Turkish) Police
MICHAEL DICKINSON
he Sunday before last, while crossing Taksim Square in Istanbul on my way home from a morning visit to inspect the change in Gezi Park which had been wrought the evening before, I came across a spent CS gas cartridge lying at my feet.  I picked it up. The cartridg...
Alfred Kazin’s America
CHELLIS GLENDINNING
We wonder whether the dream of American liberty Was two hundred years of pine and hardwood And three generations of the grass And the generations are up: the years over We don´t know. –Archibald MacLeish, Land of th...
The Tragic Fate of Rajiv Gandhi’s ‘Action Plan’
N.D. JAYAPRAKASH
It is highly unfortunate that the twenty-fifth anniversary of the submission of the ‘Action Plan for a Nuclear Weapon Free and Non-Violent World Order’[1] by Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi before the UN General Assembly (UNGA) on 09 June 1988 during the Third Spec...
War’s Lasting Wounds
CHARLES LARSON
My admiration for William Wharton began in 1978 with the publication of his first novel, Birdy, the story of a young man who, well, believes that he is a bird—or at least that he should be able to fly like a bird.  By any measure, it’s an extraordinary novel t...
“Almira” in the Berkshires
DAVID YEARSLEY
Ars longa, vita brevis runs the aphorism. Art is long, life is short. Perhaps it’s fitting that a doctor—Hippocrates no less—came up with the phrase, since it conveniently lets his profession off the hook from of prolonging ephemeral earthly life. It’s a de...
Grayson and Orloski
POETS' BASEMENT
Homo Earthus Interruptis by ARABELLA GRAYSON We are the future fossil fuel: Tar baby tar sands for the 91tst century, dinosaurs of the Internet Age. Known as homo earthus interruptis, we feed a mutated sp...
Sequester Optionally Applied Only to Good Things
DAVID SWANSON
Spending cuts have been applied by Congress to both military and non-military spending. In my view, the military cuts are much too small and the non-military cuts should not exist at all.  In the view of most liberal organizations, the military cuts — like t...
The Snowden Affair
MICHAEL BRENNER
Political Washington is in a fit over the Snowden affair. It is little disturbed by PRISM, Tempera and related abuses against the Republic. Therein lies the unhappy reality of American democracy today. The ferocity of the assault on Snowden and his sympathizers suggests m...
Why Boycott Israel?
LAWRENCE DAVIDSON
Ido Aharoni, Israel’s Consul General for New York, and also “the founding head of Israel’s brand-management team and the originator of the Brand Israel movement” recently wrote an op-ed in the New York Post (19 June 2013). In it he took to task the famous...
The Roberts Court is Like a Box of Chocolates
KIMBERLÉ CRENSHAW
If Supreme Courts over time are arranged like boxes of chocolates, the Roberts Court defies the myth that you never know what you’re going to get. From the first bite into its discrimination decisions, the bitter nougat was always at odds with its enticing packaging. Ni...
Stunted Revolutions
BINOY KAMPMARK
Inequality is something the United States does well.  Depending on a range of indicators – the provision of housing, income, balanced and stable infrastructure, the presence of the death penalty in many states – the motor of the free world is not as well oiled as...
Eavesdropping on the Planet
WILLIAM BLUM
The above is the title of an essay that I wrote in 2000 that appeared as a chapter in my book ...
Ireland: Financial Playground for Global Elites
CAOIMHGHIN Ó CROIDHEÁIN
“So, so…[the €7 billion] is bridged until we can pay you back..which is never. [Loud laughter]” (Telephone conversation between Anglo Irish Bank executives in September 2008) Current ongoing revelations in the form of recorde...
If U.S. Mass Media Were State-Controlled, Would They Look Any Different?
JEFF COHEN
The Edward Snowden leaks have revealed a U.S. corporate media system at war with independent journalism. Many of the same outlets – especially TV news – that missed the Wall Street meltdown and cheer-led the Iraq invasion have come to resemble state-controlled media o...