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Archives from June 2014
Hank Paulson Does Global Warming
ROB URIE
A recent ...
The Loneliness of Anti-Imperialist Fighters
ANDRE VLTCHEK
It is late at night and you cannot sleep. Ebrie Lagoon is right behind the window of your hotel, but it is hardly visible at this hour. You are in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa. You are here because you were informed that the President of Ukrain...
What Did 9/11 Change?
MUSA al-GHARBI
Earlier this month, the White House unveiled its new foreign pol...
Rep. Issa: Shielding $300 Billion in Tax Evasion
RALPH NADER
The IRS has been under loud scrutiny as of late by House Republicans regarding the agency’s role in targeting conservative-leaning political nonprofit groups applying for tax exempt status. Representative Darrell Issa (R-CA) has led the charge in these fiery hearing...
Francis Fukuyama to the Box
PATRICK FOY
On Wednesday, June 25th, the Financial Times published an essay by Francis Fukuyama. He is the famed US political scientist, a “neoconservative” apostate and author of ...
ISIS and the New History
BINOY KAMPMARK
Liam Fox, the former UK Secretary for Defence, is a dangerous man. Within his inchoate Tory babble lies an authoritarian message, one fuming with a distorting kind of madness. Like every authoritarian message, an enemy hewn from a quarry of decent reserves is required. Th...
Capitalists Take on Climate Change
ROBERT HUNZIKER
The climate change/global warming issue has been in the mainstream for decades, but it still lacks the resonance required to turn heads. Maybe, in part, because it is doubtful the average American could name more than one climate change advocate (it’s all about leadersh...
Getting It Wrong on Iraq
BERT SACKS
“Those Iraqis have been fighting each other for centuries,” a friend recently said to me.  I have heard this mistaken view too often. I told him I had been to Iraq nine times, all before the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq.  Not a single Iraqi ever said to me, “...
Use of Pilotless Drones for Assassinations Violates the Rule of Law
ALICE SLATER
A secret US government legal memo, prepared for President Obama, was recently ordered to be released to the public by a Federal Court responding to a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union. The Administration’s legal reasoning clearly fails to justify the...
California Teachers Take Another Hit From Politicians
ANN ROBERTSON and BILL LEUMER
With Democratic Governor Jerry Brown in office since 2011 and the Democratic Party winning a supermajority in the state legislature in 2012, one might think that organized labor was secure and riding high. At least, that is the impression organized labor projects during c...
The Saga of Migrant Children
BARBARA NIMRI AZIZ
“I’ll go anywhere, even to America.” It was 1994 when I heard these words, spoken by an Iraqi lad, Yasser. Yasser was  barely 20, plodding sadly from embassy to embassy. He was in Jordan when the vicious US-led world embargo, only four years into reducing th...
Profiles in Courage and Repression
ALFREDO LOPEZ
As bad as things get for our movement in this country, we are not yet feeling the full throttle of repression and, if one needs a reminder of that and perhaps a profile of what’s in store for us if we don’t organize now, the situation facing Internet activists...
Libya and the Attack on Women
VIJAY PRASHAD
Benghazi’s senior lawyer Salwa Bugaighis voted in Libya’s general election on June 25. The polling was spare. Threats of violence kept people at home. Despondency amongst the people did not help. An ongoing military campaign called Operation Karama (Dignity) led by Ge...
Israel’s Existential Threat
ANDREW LEVINE
Israel thrives on what it calls “existential threats,” fabricated perils that are just plausible enough to be believed. As social divisions mount, they help hold Israeli society together.  They also keep “diaspora” Jews on board. And they keep Weste...
The Desperate Choices Behind Child Migration
ALEXANDRA EARLY
As someone who just returned from living and working in El Salvador, I’m still having a hard time adjusting to our mainstream media’s never-ending wave of know-nothing commentary on the subject of immigration. A case in point is the column penned by New York Times...
Fragmentation of News and Causes
GILBERT MERCIER and DADY CHERY
“When the blind men had each felt a part of the elephant, the king went to each of them and said to each: ‘Well, blind man, have you seen the elephant? Tell me, what sort of thing is an elephant?’” When a typhoon hits the Philippines, an earthquake...
Central Bank Stock Buying Binge
MIKE WHITNEY
Central banks have shifted into stocks and are buying up everything that isn’t bolted to the floor. That’s the gist of the story that breathlessly appeared in the Financial Times about a week ago and swept across the blogosphere like a Santa Anna brushf...
New Cold War Sets Sights on Green Groups
ALEXANDER REID ROSS
When Russian commandos surrounded Greenpeace activists and arrested them for piracy, it created an international incident. The Arctic 30 have been released since, their boat returned to Greenpeace, and Russia commenced drilling in the Arctic. While Greenpeace is still agi...
Why Are Honduran Children Leaving?
SUYAPA PORTILLO VILLEDA & GERARDO TORRES ZELAYA
The spirited festivities of the Brazilian World Cup qualifying matches Honduran president Juan Orlando Hernandez enjoyed last week stood in stark contrast to the cold grey Homeland Security buildings where thousands of Honduran children met with U.S. officials to search f...
Why Sean Penn is Wrong About Haiti
KEVIN PINA
There are regular demonstrations in Haiti demanding the resignation of President Martelly, protests against the leveling of homes in downtown Port au Prince, protests against the confiscation of lands for tourism projects on the island of ...
Bernie Sanders Cannot Save US
RON JACOBS
In the spring of 1997, a drive to form a union amongst the housekeeping, bookstore, landscaping and trades workers at the University of Vermont (UVM) was well underway. The United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers union (UE) had been enlisted to help those of us in th...
The Honduras Drug War
JOSEPH GROSSO
The inherent imbecility of the War on Drugs can most easily be measured in terms of sheer carnage. There are the decades of mandatory sentencing, racist policing, and inflated prison numbers that have many African Americans living on the economic fringes without voting ri...
The Future of the Kingdom of Spain
DANIEL RAVENTOS and JULIE WARK
Barcelona. With the abdication of King Juan Carlos I and proclamation of his son as the new King of Spain, Felipe VI (followed by two solid hours of hand-kissing by a fashionable line-up of 2,000 guests), Spanish newspapers have recently been awash with ar...
India’s Saffron Capitalism
RADHIKA DESAI
It is clear that the new Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in New Delhi is unapologetically devoted to corporate interests and promises to bring the wonders of Modi’s Gujarat ‘model’ to the rest of India. With a secure majority of its own in the Lok Sabha, the...
The Long Arm of the Anti-War Movement
DAVID McDONALD
History never turns out the way you expect or want. The world powers in 1914 knew there would be winners and losers in the wars they contemplated sending other peoples’ sons to die in, but they never imagined that one-sixth of the earth’s land would be remov...
America’s Foreign Policy Quagmire
RENEE PARSONS
After a weekend of golf in Palm Springs, President Obama returned to the White House and   ordered 300 ‘boots on the ground’ (including intelligence analysts, logistic experts and special ops) into Iraq after declaring that “The United States is not simply goin...
Saving Junaid Hafeez = Saving Pakistan
FAWZIA AFZAL-KHAN
In a piece published by the Jackson Free Press on June 25th,...
Hillary Drops the Big One on China
PETER LEE
Back in March, I presciently speculated about (and J. Michael Cole pined for...
How Not to Save the Labor Movement
CAL WINSLOW
The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) thrives on the big splash. It is almost clocklike in the regularity with which it proclaims its latest plans to revolutionize labor relations and save the labor movement. So here we go again. Its most recent plan ris...
A Revolution of Ideas is Needed
GRAHAM PEEBLES
The mode of contemporary living is in many ways dysfunctional. There are the obvious and painful daily signs that affirm this: the thirteen or so wars taking place; the fact that half the world’s population live impoverished lives on less than $2 a day, 80% on under $10...
Biosafety and the ‘Seralini Affair’
GILLES-ERIC SERALINI, ROBIN MESNAGE, NICOLAS DEFARGE and JOEL SPIROUX de VENDOMOIS
There is an ongoing debate on the potential health risks of the consumption of genetically modified (GM) plants containing high levels of pesticide residues. Currently, no regulatory authority requests mandatory chronic animal feeding studies to be performed for ed...
UN Condemns Force-Feeding of Palestinian Prisoners
CESAR CHELALA
United Nations experts on human rights have urged the Israeli government not to continue force-feeding Palestinian prisoners against their will, as a bill on this issue is facing a Knesset reading on June 30. The UN Special Rapporteurs have called force-feeding a “cruel...
Will GM Crops Collapse the Food System?
JIM GOODMAN
When Genetically Modified (GM) crops were first planted commercially in 1996 they were just another technological innovation that fit well into the trend of larger farms and fewer farmers. Since weed control was a time consuming task, chemicals that killed the weeds witho...
The Untapped Potential of Paraguay’s Petroleum
MATEO PIMENTEL
US consumers constitute an indispensible milieu for the consumption of international oil and its products. It is no wonder, then, that oil producing nations have perhaps little choice when it comes their respective, competitive international viability within the context o...
US and Egypt’s “Historic Partnership” Reeks With Hypocrisy
SHELDON RICHMAN
Largely overshadowed by events in Iraq and Syria, the Obama administration is dropping its pretense at displeasure with the military junta in Egypt and restoring full support for the regime that so recently quashed the country’s faltering attempt at democracy. Se...
Destabiliziation in Latin America
MATT PEPPE
News from the AP about the U.S. government’s secret project to create a ...
Digital Protections in the Snowden Age
BINOY KAMPMARK
Our answer to the question of what police must do before searching a cell phone seized incident to an arrest is accordingly simple – get a warrant. – Chief Justice John Roberts in Riley v California (US Supreme Court, June 2014)...
ISIS (DAASH) Now Recruiting in Palestinian Camps in Lebanon
FRANKLIN LAMB
Ein el Helwe camp As Washington and London were affirming the past few days their intentions to continue to arm “moderate rebel factions” in Syria, Tel Aviv just announced it would like to be helpful by joining with “moderate Arab nations” to battl...
Capitalism & Climate Change
ALYSSA ROHRICHT
Capitalism dominates the globe. It has become so enmeshed into the cultural narrative that it seems almost axiomatic. Private owners (of capital) control the means of production. The goal:...
Kerry, Personification of Team Obama
NORMAN POLLACK
Cadence—rhythmical motion (compulsive, sustained intervention), also a concluding and usually falling strain (the end of America’s unilateral global dominance, as both the world’s power system becomes de-centered and US decay, through a surfeit of militarism at the ...
Muddy Waters for Keystone XL South
STEVE HORN
On June 6, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit handed down a rulin...
Condoms as the Death of Culture?
FARZANA VERSEY
When the condom is pitted against fidelity, it becomes a question of sperm censorship and how it infringes on the freedom of values. It is a delectable swapping of the blueprint.  ...
Sorting the English-Language News
ANGEL RYONO
Early in March 2014, I lunched with a writer who is on a research visit in Berkeley. His career achievements, writing about subjects historically marginalized by the PRC government, have turned him into a globetrotter, including making sojourns in Taiwan. I, a Taiwanese i...
Obama’s People Show Their True Colors
DAVID MACARAY
For those who wondered what happened to Robert Gibbs, President Obama’s former campaign advisor and mealy-mouthed White House press secretary, he has resurfaced in the private sector. He is the co-founder of Incite Agency, an upscale public relations firm. Apparently, g...
Korean Border Noir
LOUIS PROYECT
In April 2013 I wrote a survey for CounterPunch on Korean War movies made by Koreans that included Jang Hoon’s The Front Line, about which I wrote: ...
Boycott the Vote
MISSY BEATTIE
Go to dictionary.com and enter—never mind. Just click this to see a new synonym for voting, the word ...
Bite Me!
HARRY BROWNE
Oh, that Italy-Uruguay game was one for the old-timers and the purists. No, really. None of your goalfests, to hell with your flair. Football, says a significant school of thought, is a game of endurance and attrition, and if it’s being played properly, no one sh...
Achebe’s Greatest Novel, 50 Years On
CHARLES R. LARSON
I purchased my first copy of Chinua Achebe’s third novel, Arrow of God, at a CMS (Church M...
World Cup Banter
CESAR CHELALA
Two splendid goals by Lionel Messi against Nigeria (which Argentina beat 3-2) prompts this question among many soccer fans. Who is a better player, Messi now or Maradona then? To answer that question it might be useful to seek help from a Greek oracle, since both are, or ...
FIFA’s Music
DAVID YEARSLEY
If forced to choose between a close-range battering from the vuvuzela—the infamous plastic horn that pierced the global eardrum during the last World Cup held in South Africa—and the current batch of World Cup songs, I might just opt for the former. Thankfully absent,...