Exclusively in the new print issue of CounterPunch
FATTENING WALL STREET — Mike Whitney reports on the rapid metamorphosis of new Fed Chair Janet Yallin into a lackey for the bankers, bond traders and brokers. The New Religious Wars Over the Environment: Joyce Nelson charts the looming confrontation between the Catholic Church and fundamentalists over climate change, extinction and GMOs; A People’s History of Mexican Constitutions: Andrew Smolski on the 200 year-long struggle of Mexico’s peasants, indigenous people and workers to secure legal rights and liberties; Spying on Black Writers: Ron Jacobs uncovers the FBI’s 50 year-long obsession with black poets, novelists and essayists; O Elephant! JoAnn Wypijewski on the grim history of circus elephants; PLUS: Jeffrey St. Clair on birds and climate change; Chris Floyd on the US as nuclear bully; Seth Sandronsky on Van Jones’s blind spot; Lee Ballinger on musicians and the State Department; and Kim Nicolini on the films of JC Chandor.
Archives from July 2013
Economic Recovery by Statistical Manipulation
JACK RASMUS
Facing the prospect of a 2nd quarter GDP report showing economic growth less than 1% (some professional forecasting services predict as low as 0.5%), and a year to year growth of the US economy likely to come in at barely 1%–compared to a 2011-12 already tepid 1.7%&...
What We Learned From the Manning Show Trial
KEVIN CARSON
Major Ashlend Fein, US Army prosecutor in Bradley Manning’s court martial, caught my attention when he referred to Manning as an “anarchist” in closing arguments. As an anarchist, I’d be proud to share that label with Manning. But I’ve never heard from any relia...
The Return of Martin Indyk
MICHAEL BRENNER
The Obama administration is turning its alchemic powers toward Palestine.  It is aiming to fashion a ‘success’ out of the shambles created by its lame failure to stand up to the Israeli government of Bibi Netanyahu.  This is the sternest test to date of its talent a...
Race Traitor
NORMAN POLLACK
This is a touchy topic.  Liberals and progressives of current fashion had best stay away from it or hide under the bed sheets, too those enthralled by political correctness (often the same crowd), for, as I wrote in a New York Times Comment (July 29) in response t...
Is Turkey Thriving?
T. SABRI ÖNCÜ
On 27 May 2013, Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University published a commentary titled “Why Turkey is Thriving?” at Project Syndicate. He argued,  “Long-term growth stems from prudent monetary and fiscal policies, the political will to regulate banks, and a combination...
Convicting Bradley Manning
BINOY KAMPMARK
“[I]t is the duty of all persons in the service of the United States, as well as all other the inhabitants thereof, to give the earliest information to Congress or other proper authority of any misconduct, frauds or misdemeanours committed...
Fidel Castro and the Power of Faith
RICARDO ALARCÓN
  On March 10, 1952, former dictator Fulgencio Batista seized power in Cuba again. This happened eighty days before the elections in which he would have received the least votes. With one blow, he overthrew the president, abolished the constitution, dis...
The EU’s Anti-Hezbollah Move
FRANKLIN LAMB
Damascus An admittedly quick survey of Damascus based analysts and political factions reveal only contempt for last week’s EU vote adding the “military wing” of Hezbollah to its “terrorist” blacklist.  During discussions which included normally...
Hated in Egypt
RAMZY BAROUD
When I left Gaza for the first time on my own, twenty some years ago, I was warned of a notorious officer who headed Egypt’s State Security Intelligence at the Rafah border. He “hates Palestinians,” I was told. My friends and neighbors in Gaza warned me not t...
The Flight Home
RAOUF J. HALABY
Vague as it is, my first memory of Jalal dates back to late 1948. Khalo Anton and Auntie Angel and their 6 children, and Anton’s sister, the widowed Katrina Halaby, and her 5 children, resided in a house located in a Jericho Bayy...
J’Accuse
THOMAS L. KNAPP
Dear President Obama, I possess neither Emile Zola’s writing talent nor his penchant for presidential flattery, but I think I may perhaps lay rightful claim to some semblance of his well-developed sense of moral outrage. I address you as “preside...
The Egyptian Revolution’s Next Struggle
MARTIN MARGOLIS
Cairo. Within the western press accounts of recent developments in Egypt have almost invariably been framed by a simplistic narrative that has managed to incorporate the full gamut of orientalist tropes about the Middle East. A power hungry military regime...
A Nuclear Free World
DAVID SWANSON
We’ve managed to outgrow or to come within sight of outgrowing cannibalism, slavery, blood feuds, duels, capital punishment, child labor, tar and feathering, the stocks and pillory, wives as chattel, the punishment of homosexuality, and listening to Rush Limba...
Oscar Grant Was Not the “Exception”
JESSE STRAUSS
After a month of mixed emotions and avoiding watching “Fruitvale,” the feature film about Oscar Grant III, I walked out of the theater stumped. Last night, my sister asked me to join her to watch the movie, particularly because of my relationship with the rebe...
The Disastrous Consequences of Raiding Public Pensions
DARWIN BOND-GRAHAM
Detroit’s bankruptcy and a high profile lawsuit in San Jose highlight a national effort led by fiscal conservatives to undo the basic promise embodied in public employee pensions – a guaranteed, defined retirement benefit. If they succeed in unraveling public ...
A Barbarism That Dares Not Speak Its Name
JOHN PILGER
The election campaign in Australia is being fought with the lives of men, women and children. Some drown, others are banished without hope to malarial camps. Children are incarcerated behind razor wire in conditions described as “a huge generator of mental illness”. T...
The Meaning of the Manning Verdict
KATE EPSTEIN
Although Manning was not convicted of the harsher “aiding the enemy” charge, which would have introduced a death-eligible charge into the government’s anti-whistleblower toolbox, he was convicte...
A Hard Rain
CHRIS FLOYD
This week, super-compassionate, deeply-caring progressive David Atkins (of Hullabaloo) read a story in the New York Times about farmers in the “Deep South” suffering from ruined crops after weeks of unusually heavy rains. The farmers face economic dis...
Why Did Washington Hate Hugo Chavez?
MIKE WHITNEY
Eva Golinger, winner of the International Award for Journalism in Mexico (2009), named “La Novia de Venezuela” by President Hugo Chávez, is an Attorney and Writer from New York, living in Caracas, Venezuela since 2005 and author of the best-selling books, “...
Why No Revolution Exists in Syria
SHAMUS COOKE
The era of Arab Spring euphoria is long ended, having devolved into doubt, confusion or wholesale rejection. Libya and Syria put an abrupt end to the Arab Spring celebrations, with the current situation in Egypt adding to the frustration. Part of the problem in dec...
The Fed Deception
TOM McNAMARA
“The Federal Reserve is no more Federal than Federal Express” - Dennis Kucinich, former Democratic Congressman from Ohio’s 10th District “There is no institut...
The Gentleman Whistleblower
JACK CLANCEY
Hong Kong. “Gentlemen do not read each other’s mail,” Henry Stimson famously commented when in 1929, as the U.S. Secretary of State, he withdrew funding from the Black Chamber program that had been deciphering messages sent by foreign ambassadors. By...
EPA Censored Key Pennsylvania Fracking Water Contamination Study
STEVE HORN
A must-read Los Angeles Times story by Neela Banerjee demonstrates that – once again – the Obama administration ...
Banks as Public Utilities
ELLEN BROWN
Establishing a city-owned San Francisco Bank is not a new idea. According to City Supervisor John Avalos, speaking at the Public Banking Institute conference in San Rafael in June, it has been on the table for over a decade. Recent interest was spurred by th...
Jay Z & Belafonte
CARL FINAMORE
Veteran civil rights activist and world-renowned entertainer Harry Belafonte hit a raw nerve last year when he suggested Black artists be more outspoken about their besieged communities. “I think one of the great abuses of this modern time,” he observed, ...
Desperate House (and Senate) Wives
DAVID MACARAY
Whether the husband is a Democrat or Republican, it doesn’t really matter. I’ve always felt sympathy for the loyal wife of the politician who disgraces himself by getting caught consorting with prostitutes, or circulating photographs of his private parts, or fornicati...
Labor Takes a Stand
JACK GERSON
Two years ago, Wisconsin public workers and services were under assault. Hundreds of thousands of workers converged on the state capital, Madison, to fight austerity cuts proposed by Gov. Scott Walker. The International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 10 shutdown Bay ...
The Moral Verdict on Bradley Manning
NORMAN SOLOMON
The sun rose with a moral verdict on Bradley Manning well before the military judge could proclaim his guilt. The human verdict would necessarily clash with the proclamation from the judicial bench. In lockstep with administrators of the nation’s war services, ju...
Why the US Has No Right to Lecture Latin America
DANIEL WICKHAM
Venezuela has announced that it is ending efforts to improve ties with the United States after the Obama administration’s nominee for the role of ambassador to the United Nations labelled the country “repressive.” Samantha Power, who is widely known for her strong s...
The Assassination of Julian Assange
JONATHAN COOK
I have just watched We Steal Secrets, Alex Gibney’s documentary about Wikileaks and Julian Assange. One useful thing I learnt is the difference between a hatchet job and character assassination. Gibney is too clever for a hatchet job, and his propaganda is all the more ...
Women Amidst the Cordite
VIJAY PRASHAD
Why did Congresswoman Amina al-Mogherbi and City Councillor Dr. Najat al-Kikhia resign from their posts? Why have Amina Mahmoud Takhtakh and Dr. Mariam Talyeb gone underground? These are the less dramatic stories of today’s Libya. More dramatic are the bomb blasts and t...
Why the Justice Department Can (and Must) Criminally Prosecute George Zimmerman
ERIC C. JACOBSON
A Florida jury’s recent acquittal of George Zimmerman from all criminal culpability in the death of Trayvon Martin has stunned the nation and provoked a crisis in our race relations reminiscent of the Rodney King officers’ state trial fiasco. President Barack O...
The Exterminators
MICHAEL BRENNER
Captain Ahab’s obsessive hunt for Moby Dick was driven by the thirst for revenge. The great white whale had maimed Ahab – in soul as well as body. Ahab was consumed by the passion to restore his sense of self, and make himself whole again, by killing his nemesis – a...
A Shameful Day to Be a US Citizen
DAVE LINDORFF
I have been deeply ashamed of my country a number of times. The Nixon Christmas bombing of Hanoi and Haiphong was one such time, when hospitals, schools and dikes were targeted. The invasion of Iraq was another. Washington’s silence over the fatal Israeli Commando raid ...
The Logical (and Coming) End to the US Empire
ROBERT P. ABELE
There are numerous legal and ethical arguments that can and have been made in opposition to U.S. foreign policy of raw aggression. For an example of the illegalities of U.S. Empire, examine the Geneva Conventions, all four of which directly proscribe what they each call ...
Walk Like an Egyptian
S. FITZGERALD JOHNSON
Egypt’s ongoing political war has taken another, increasingly fascistic turn. The struggle turned most spectacularly in early 2011, and was waged continuously, then under the cover of social peace, until July 2013. Contemporary Egypt is experiencing a more acute crisis ...
The Boycott of Israel, Eight Years In
LAWRENCE DAVIDSON
The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement directed toward Israel is eight years old. It was started back in 2005, when a coalition of Palestine-based social and economic organizations called for such a comprehensive effort. At first the BDS movement appe...
Hysteria, Madness and the Forgotten War
CLANCY SIGAL
Sixty years ago this week the “forgotten war” came to an inconclusive end. 

The ...
Love the Kids, Hate Gangs
RODOLFO ACUÑA
I have often said that I hate gangs but love the kids. Keep in mind that street gangs are products of society, made up of kids with fewer alternatives than others. Poverty and a lack of opportunity spawn street gangs, and public hostility and isolation complete the proces...
A Further Irish Engagement with the Greek Crisis and the Greek Left
HELENA SHEEHAN
“Things have gone very quiet in Greece, haven’t they?” So many people said that to me in the past six months or so. I responded that there was a lot going on, even if international media weren’t covering it. There were civil mobilisations of teachers and tr...
Freedom of the Press is Real National Security
NORM KENT
The buildings that fell on September 11, 2001 in New York City took down more than steel and concrete, and stripped us of more than 3,000 lives. The attack on the World Trade Center was a precursor to a government assault on our civil liberties. From airport scanne...
The Manning Trial Rests
BINOY KAMPMARK
Moral courage – not afraid to say or do what you believe to be right. -Field Marshal Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, The Memoirs of Field Marshall Montgomery, 1958 The farce is done, and one might say that the ...
Belafonte in Tallahassee
JACK McCARTHY
Harry Belafonte came to Tallahassee this past Friday and he wasn’t here to sing “The Banana Boat Song.” The singer, actor and veteran political activist/dissident was here to join the 11 day occupation of  Florida Governor slick Rick Scott led b...
What John Kerry Really Did in Vietnam
JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
With John Kerry currently in full Henry Kissinger regalia, parading around the Middle East, brow-beating the Palestinians and their allies in the region and Europe into signing onto a deeply flawed peace accord that primarily serves Israeli and American interests, it ...
The Age of Regression
JOHN PILGER
London. I have known my postman for more than 20 years. Conscientious and good-humoured, he is the embodiment of public service at its best. The other day, I asked him, “Why are you standing in front of each door like a soldier on parade?” “Ne...
Obama’s Legacy, Before Snowden and Now
ANDREW LEVINE
Like Jackie Robinson, Barack Obama will be remembered for crossing a seemingly infrangible color line. However the comparison stops there.  Playing in the major leagues, even for the Brooklyn Dodgers, hardly compares with becoming President of the United States....
Obama’s Plan for Economic Immiseration
ROB URIE
President Barack Obama spoke at length on the economy on Wednesday in the first of what is reported to be a series of speeches he will give around the country to push his economic ‘agenda.’ A question for his supporters is why Mr. Obama is now purporting to promote th...
Another Journalist with Children in the Israeli Military
ALISON WEIR
The New York Times recently published a news ...
In Defense of Leaderless Revolutions
PETER GELDERLOOS
Barcelona. Cihan Tugal (“The End of the “Leaderless” Revolution” July 10, 2013) effectively picks apart the populist and premature claims of a successful re...
The Weiner Affair, Phase Two
GARY LEUPP
Ok, someone has to write this, so why not me? Having proudly analyzed the affair of the tea-trade senator Larry Craig, the White House night-time visits of male prostitute-journalist “...