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Archives from August 2013
The Terrifying World of Electronic Monitoring
JAMES KILGORE
I spend a considerable part of my life doing research and writing about electronic monitors-those  black plastic ankle bracelets best known for landing on the legs of a number of the rich and notorious-Martha Stewart, Paris Hilton, Michael Vick, and Charley Sheen, just t...
Forward to Fascism?
JASON HIRTHLER
The Orwellian concept of doublethink, and its synonyms ‘doublespeak’ and ‘doubletalk’, are relatively recent euphemisms for political deceit, but they have a classical analogue in the Roman Empire. Janus was the Roman god of transitions, principally between war an...
Reflections on 50 Years of Struggle
Rev. JESSE L. JACKSON, Sr.
Lincoln Memorial, Washington, DC, August 24, 2013. What a blessing it was to have been here 50 years ago as one of the host of witnesses, excited and fresh from jail in Greensboro, North Carolina.  To hear the collective voices of Walter Reuther from labo...
The Case of Spain
VICENTE NAVARRO
The Vice President of the European Commission, Olli Rehn, in charge of Economic and Monetary Affairs is becoming the most unpopular Commissioner in Spain. He emphasizes over and over again that labor market rigidities are causing the high unemployment in Spain. Labor rigi...
Havana, Where Everyone Can Dance
ANDRE VLTCHEK
Havana, Cuba It is crowded and loud. La Froridita, a famous old bar in Havana Vieja (Old Havana), is packed to the roof. Patrons consist mostly of foreigners and some overseas Cubans. They are loud, trying to shout over the upbeat son ...
Faux Progressivism
ERIC LAURSEN
One of the perks of being a name journalist is never having to admit you got it wrong. Take Michael Lewis, perhaps the most admired nonfiction writer in the US today, who in 2007, in a column for Bloomberg.com, casually dismissed warnings that the financial system might b...
The Fight is On in Brazil
RICHARD BROKAW
Rio de Janeiro. In June 2013 what seemed like a minor demonstration against the increase of 20 cents in the public transportation ticket  in Sao Paulo,  Brazil’s largest city, turned into a free for all of police brutality.  Police riot  control troo...
Hollywood and Black America
LOUIS PROYECT
Recently ‘ The Butler and Fruitvale Station, both Harvey Weinstein productions, arrived at my local “better” movie theater and settled down next to Woody Allen’s latest navel-gazing exercise. At the same time HBO was running The Help, a 20...
Fear Spreads Through Palestinian Camps in Syria
FRANKLIN LAMB
Yarmouk Palestinian camp, Damascus Close to 50,000 children from Yarmouk Palestinian camp in Syria have fled Syria, being among the more than one million other children according to Palestinian Popular Committees in the Damascus-Homs area and head of U.N. ...
Why Oliver Stone Came to JeJu, Korea
K.J. NOH
In 1986, a young American director, burst out on the screens with a raw, charged, kinetic film.  Depicting a country on the verge of popular revolution, it documents the rightwing terror and massacres that are instigated, aided and abetted by the US government. Beginning...
Egypt: Educating the Empire
S. FITZGERALD JOHNSON
In the imperial center, much continues to be made of contemporary Egyptian politics. Despite theatre and rhetoric to the contrary, the empire’s attention is not the result of humanist values. Nor has the parade of functionaries – Burns, Ashton, Leon, Westerwelle, McCa...
The Move to Gut French Pensions
TOM GILL
A showdown between the French Government and unions is looming over  reforms to the country’s ‘generous’ pension system. Strikes and protests are scheduled for September 10 in response to plans by the Socialist administration of President Franco...
Your War Did Not Liberate Us
MOHADESA NAJUMI
On November 18 2001 Laura Bush gave her first radio address urging worldwide condemnation of the treatment of wo...
What the Irish Hate About Bono
ROSITA A. SWEETMAN
What sticks in the craw about Bono with most people in Ireland is his crafty avoidance of massive tax liabilities at home while simultaneously strutting the world stage as a Messiah, a ‘jumped up Jesus’ (Bono’s own words), intent on ‘saving’ Africa’s poor....
Death in Tilburg
TALAL ALYAN
For Alex Sellen. It must have been past noon. The tough Dutch sunlight encroaching through the gauze curtains, only there for décor or propriety. I am reading a friend’s obituary. Everyone else in the house, an old friend and his lover who are hosting m...
Ode to a Revolution
AHMAD BARQAWI
Two and a half years of multiple massive popular demonstrations, millions of Egyptians taking to the streets, alternating paths of revolutions and counter-revolutions and thousands of dead and wounded; and the only real change Egypt has witnessed was switching from the Qa...
The Gold Mines of Colombia
CARL WORSWICK
Father Jose Reynal Restrepo is on edge. Flustered and eyes flicking frenetically across the room, his shirt is unbuttoned and he sweats. A video camera rolls. “The voice of the people is the voice of God,” he announces. “If the people stick together an...
Until Our Dying Day
JAMES RUSSELL
In the musical “A Chorus Line,” the audience follows a group of dancers auditioning for the chance to be in a Broadway chorus line. It’s a popular show about love, coming-of-age and struggle. Told in a series of monologues (and the occasional ensemble number), we ev...
Betraying Khavaran
SOHEIL ASEFI
What is Khavaran? 1988 is a year that is remembered for resistance to the 1988 IMF and Wo...
The Virtue of Chelsea Manning
BINOY KAMPMARK
“Mr. Manning’s treatment has been intended to send a signal to people of conscience in the U.S. government who might seek to bring wrongdoing to light.” R...
Algeria Redux in Egypt
DAVID PORTER
Quite tragically, Egypt now seems to be following the same bloody path as Algeria in the 1990s. As I forewarned in an article almost two years ago,i Egypt’s military, like Algeria’s in 199...
Socialist Breakthrough Highlights Path for Independent Politics
CALVIN POPE
In the August primary election for Seattle City Council, Socialist Alternative candidate Kshama Sawant won a stunning 35% of the vote in a three-way race against two Democratic Party candidates. Over 44,000 people voted for Sawant, more votes than the incumbent Seattle ma...
Why a Left Movement Has Never Really Happened
CHARLES HAYMARKET
In my heart I’m a lifelong leftist, but a very frustrated one. I see too little of a movement at a time, when it’s never been more needed. I understand too often the movement was run by white men talking over everyone, so I’ll not be bossy and be as brie...
Looking, Seeing
MISSY BEATTIE
I saw the dime when I was running. I continued on and then circled back, picking up the coin to throw to the gods for an unselfish wish. I thought about the mythology, a ritual I usually associate with finding a penny. Later, mid-afternoon, as I walked to the groce...
My Surveilled Life
DAVID ROVICS
Ever since Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras interviewed Edward Snowden, government surveillance has been in the news.  Then there was a lengthy article in the New York Times in which Poitras’ experience with flying, particularly with arriving in the US, was docume...
Autumn in America
RON JACOBS
Autumn 1973 was quite the autumn. Personally, I had just moved to New York City to attend college at the Bronx campus of Fordham University. I vaguely recall my first full weekend in New York, checking out the Village and attending a showing of National Lampoon’s produc...
March Against the Genocide of Black People in Brazil
WANGUI KIMARI
“React or be Dead” is a campaign initiated by many Black communities and movements in Salvador, Bahia, and that has been taken up nationally, with the objective of organizing to fight against the police brutality, prison industrial complex and genocidal state of affai...
Racism and the Movement to End the Israeli Occupation
PAUL LARUDEE
On August 6, 2013, State House spokeswoman Jen Psaki made history by ...
An Official Rejoinder to Paul Larudee
FELICIA EAVES AND PETER MILLER
As Paul Larudee correctly points out in his latest article, the US Campaign unequivocally opposes all forms of racism. The US Campaign is a broad-based coalition o...
The Manning Show Trial is Another Dreyfus Affair
JEROME IRWIN
Madness, hypocrisy and historical ignorance swirl around the military kangaroo court that has sentenced Pvt. Bradley Manning to 35 years in prison. It’s a classic example of the old adage that, “Those who fail to learn history’s lessons of the past are doomed to rep...
The “Looney Left”
JON HOCHSCHARTNER
I’m a socialist and an animal-rights advocate. I also live with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). After hearing about my mental health challenges, a typical reactionary comment might be: “Well, I should have known you were a nut from your politics...
Musical Beds
CHARLES R. LARSON
My Education—Susan Choi’s libidinous fourth novel—might more accurately be called M...
Beautiful Noize
DAVID YEARSLEY
The summer road trip seems to offer the chance to catch up on all those recordings accumulated over the previous year. Depending on your perspective, the endless government pork ladled out onto the highways of this country can lead to teeth-grinding back-ups or to ...
Three by Linh Dinh
POETS' BASEMENT
Strumming Broke by LINH DINH   Tony pays $280 per month for a room Merely two blocks from the cracked bell, Now more dinged than ever, but only To the eagle-eyed. 7th and Market Is no free-fire zone, but stre...
The Gainesville 8
DAVID SWANSON
A 40-year reunion is being planned for the end of this month in Gainesville, Fla., of the Gainesville 8.  Sadly, Richard Nixon won’t be able to join them, although his presidential library has just released more audio recordings of his descent into madness — ...
Working-Man’s Death and Multitudinous Struggle
JAVIER SETHNESS CASTRO
Elysium, the newly released sci-fi film from 33-year old director Neill Blomkamp starring Matt Damon as the proletarian hero Max, is not to me an escapist artwork. Instead, I believe Elysium to lie within the contemporary genre which we might call “art...
The History of a One-sided Dialogue With Todd Ashker
DENIS O'HEARN
This is the story of my attempts to speak publicly about my friendship with Todd Ashker, a reputed “leader” of the hunger strike in California’s prisons. Since the latest hunger strike began on July 8, the California authorities have targeted Ashker for special atte...
Bradley Manning, Crimes Against Humanity and the Values of International Law
VIJAY PRASHAD
During his June-July 2013 court martial, Private First Class Bradley Manning sat impassive. He had been in custody from May 2010, which included harsh treatment for almost a year at the military base in Quantico, Virginia. Manning had already pleaded guilty to 10 charges ...
The Right to Remain Silent in an Age of Mass Surveillance
CHRISTOPHER H. PYLE
Last weekend, British police detained David Miranda, husband of Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald at Heathrow Airport, seized his computer and thumb drives, and forced him to disclose the passwords. The computer and thumb drives presumably contained information abo...
35 Years for Manning; 35 Cheers for US Hypocrisy
PRITI GULATI COX
On August, 21, 2013, Pfc. Bradley Manning made a ...
In the New Egypt, ‘Mabahith Amn ed-Dawla’ Means Geheime Staatspolizei
MOHAMED MALIK and MOHAMAD OMAR
Giza. Our dear friend Hossam Elzomor cannot contribute to this article because he has been arrested by the reborn Manahith Amn el-Dawla, which had been disbanded under Morsi. We lost contact with Hossam during our aborted demonstration down Ramses ...
My Friend Todd Ashker, Hunger Striker at Pelican Bay
DENIS O'HEARN
Todd Ashker is on hunger strike in Pelican Bay. California authorities call him “gang leader” and “terrorist.” I want to say something few people want to hear. Todd Ashker is my friend. I know him as a thoughtful human being who has dedicated his lif...
On Egypt’s Class-Struggle
RAMZY BAROUD
“Lord! You know well that my keen desire is to carry out Your commandments and to serve Thee with all my heart, O light of my eyes. If I were free I would pass the whole day and night in prayers. But what should I do when you have made me a slave of a human being?&#...
Murder By Proxy
NORMAN POLLACK
Not satisfied with having the largest military budget in the world, the US allocates military assistance to practically any and all who will further its hegemonic purposes.  Why dirty our hands directly when we can do so indirectly—as though an Enemy is needed just to ...
Crimes and Punishment (or Not)
DAVE LINDORFF
The military judge in Pvt. Bradley Manning’s kangaroo trial has announced his sentence, but right now I’m thinking about another soldier: William Laws Calley. A Second Lieutenant in the Army during the Vietnam War, Calley famously was convicted of slaughter...
The BLM: a Wholly-Owned Sudsidiary of ExxonMobil
DAVID CORREIA
The massive Permian Basin in west Texas and eastern New Mexico, at more than 75,000 square miles, is among the world’s largest deposits of sedimentary rock from the Permian geologic period. It is also a major oil and gas field that has produced nearly 30 billion barrels...
You Failed to Break the Spirit of Bradley Manning
NORMAN SOLOMON
Dear President Obama: As commander in chief, you’ve been responsible for the treatment of the most high-profile whistleblower in the history of the U.S. armed forces. Under your command, the United States military tried — and failed — to crush the spi...
The Generals’ Second Act
CARL FINAMORE
Egypt is again making headlines and the army is again stepping from behind the curtains to take center stage. The military-appointed civilian figures are merely second-rate stand ins. Polls indicate that most Egyptians don’t even recognize the names of the president or ...
35 Years for Exposing Us to the Truth
BIRGITTA JÓNSDÓTTIR
As of today, Wednesday 21 August 2013, Bradley Manning has served 1,182 days in prison. He should be released with a sentence of time served. Instead, the judge in his court martial at Fort Meade, Maryland has handed down a sentence of 35 years. Of course, a humane...