|World Focus: Japan and the Globe: Okaerinasai - Welcome back, Life?|
Monday, April 11 @ 07:43:29 UTC
| By Franz J. T. Lee|
April 11, 2011
Fearing a human stampede, panic and desperation, as excuse not to tell
the truth to the masses may be very noble, however, not to inform
millions of global wage workers about the real state of affairs of
corporate imperialism, about planned, man made massacres and disasters
... this is really criminal.
In fact, across the centuries, the ruling 'creme de la creme' never told
the 'wretched of the earth', the 'miserables' and 'outcasts' the truth
as dominated classes. As historical process, these 'speaking tools'
know very little about their mortal quo vadis, about their future, that
is, their progressive pauperization and eventual extermination in a
mode of destruction, based on master-slave relationships.
Must first a disaster happen which could wipe Japan off the
metropolitan map before we go onto the streets to protest against
capitalism and its atomic energy Moloch?
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|World Focus: Who feels the Earthquake?|
Thursday, July 13 @ 17:56:09 UTC
| by Joey Clarke|
So there was an earthquake in Pakistan in October 2005. TIME Magazine just reminded me. They also told me some numbers: 80,000 people died. Hard to imagine for someone who has spent his life in small islands. Unless I think in terms of all the people in my part of Kingston: all of Liguanea, Upper Mountainview, New Kingston and Beverly Hills, plus Gordon Town to boot. All dead within minutes. Or, from the Port-of-Spain years: Belmont/St Ann's, and most of the East-West Corridor - wiped out. Or, say, all of Bridgetown, Barbados... or, everybody in St Lucia, plus ten or so thousand from Martinique or St Vincent.
Strange how I can consider all those dead so coldly when I think in terms of number... maybe I should think in terms of one person: my friend, my relative, my colleague... the person I see every day. Plus the person I don't see so often, the person I run in to now and then, and the person I sometimes notice on my way from A to B. All such persons (plus 79,000 or so more who are part of the lives of others) suddenly killed en masse... it's too much. I don't know if I can ever grasp the scale of a tragedy like that; and I don't even know if it would be any clearer if I had happened to be tooling around Kashmir last October. I suspect that - like the people I saw in the photos - I would be too desperate about my own wellbeing to count beyond myself, and my immediate circle. The TIME article prompted me to start writing, but it wasn't because of the dead, nor even of the 3 million homeless (consider all Jamaica and all Trinidad, but only the lucky ones sleeping in camps), nor - though it impressed me - the 30,000 tons of food (more than I'm likely to eat in the next 20 years) that has been parachuted into the area.
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|Inside U.S.A.: Harry Belafonte on Bush, Iraq, Hurricane Katrina|
Sunday, February 05 @ 22:45:01 UTC
|Harry Belafonte on Bush, Iraq, Hurricane Katrina and Having His Conversations with Martin Luther King Wiretapped by the FBI |
By Democracy Now
January 30th, 2006
We spend the hour with the legendary musician, actor and humanitarian, Harry Belafonte. He joins us in our firehouse studio to talk about why he recently called President Bush "the world's greatest terrorist;" racism and Hurricane Katrina; Martin Luther King and the civil rights movement and wars of imperialism and resistance.
The son of Caribbean-born immigrants, Harry Belafonte grew up on the streets of Harlem and Jamaica. After serving in World War II, he returned to New York and began a successful acting and singing career. Along with his rise to worldwide stardom, Belafonte became deeply involved in the Civil Rights Movement and was close friends with the Rev. Martin Luther King. In the 1980's he helped initiate the "We Are the World" single which helped raise millions of dollars in aid to Africa. He also hosted former South African President Nelson Mandela on his triumphant visit to the United States. Belafonte has been a longtime critic of U.S. foreign policy, calling for an end to the embargo against Cuba, and opposing policies of war and global oppression.
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|Inside U.S.A.: Katrina, Conservative Myth-Making and the Media|
Sunday, October 30 @ 09:29:44 UTC
|Framing the Poor|
By Tim Wise, counterpunch.org
During the flooding of New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, many a voice praised the media for its supposedly aggressive coverage. The fact that Anderson Cooper cried on camera, or that Geraldo evinced outrage (imagine that), or that even Fox's Shepard Smith waxed indignant at the suffering in the streets, was taken as evidence of some newfound courage on the part of the press.
Standing up to FEMA's Mike Brown, and making him appear every bit as incompetent as he was -- a task about as difficult as making Paris Hilton look underfed -- inspired plaudits for any number of network anchors and reporters in the field. So too, Cooper's upbraiding of an utterly hapless Mary Landrieu, she of the U.S. Senate, just to show that both parties were fair game in this brave new world of independent media, no longer willing to be led around by the neck on a leash, as it had been with, say, Iraq, for starters.
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|Inside U.S.A.: Katrina - A Blessing in Disguise?|
Wednesday, October 05 @ 21:10:29 UTC
|By: Michael De Gale|
Do you feel that any white man has ever done anything for the black man in America? "Yes, I can think of two. Hitler and Stalin. The black man in America couldn’t get a decent factory job until Hitler put so much pressure on the white man. And then Stalin kept up the pressure." (The Autobiography of Malcolm X)
As cold and as insensitive as it may sound, Hurricane Katrina could be the best thing that happened to Afro-Americans since WWII. In the glare of MTV, Reality TV and the glitter of Bling, the plights of Black people struggling in ghettos all over America has mostly been forgotten. Katrina unveiled their suffering in Louisiana, Mississippi and New Orleans. More significantly, it reminded us of America's history of slavery, racism and bigotry in this centre of selfishness. With mouths agape, we witnessed in anguish and disbelief the attacks on The World Trade Centre and the Pentagon. Almost instantaneously, a well-orchestrated Government and community organizations rallied to rescue the hapless victims. These events gave the US the excuse it needed to unleash its dogs of war on the defenseless people of Iraq. The unilateral offensive they claimed would "make the world safe for democracy" and uncover "weapons of mass destruction." The rest as they say is history. In contrast, the response by all levels of the US administration in the days following Katrina seems pale. Although the US constitution proclaims liberty and justice for all, it was determined that race was a mitigating factor in the administration's response to this semi-natural disaster.
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|Inside U.S.A.: No Direction Home|
Thursday, September 08 @ 11:44:39 UTC
|By Chris Floyd, chris-floyd.com|
"How does it feel
To be on your own
With no direction home."
Bob Dylan, "Like a Rolling Stone"
Let's be clear about one thing. Nothing that has happened in the past week -- the mass destruction in the Mississippi Delta, the obliteration of the city of New Orleans, the murderous abandonment of thousands of people to death, chaos and disease will change the Bush Administration or American politics at all. Not one whit. The Bush Administration will not reverse its brutal policies; its Congressional rubber-stamps will not revolt against the White House; the national Democrats will not suddenly grow a spine. There will be no real change, and the bitter corrosion of injustice, indifference and inhumanity that is consuming American society will go on as before.
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|Inside U.S.A.: African victims of Hurricane Katrina - statement from APSP|
Tuesday, September 06 @ 19:42:37 UTC
| A statement by the African People’s Socialist Party on the responsibility of the U.S. government for the conditions confronting African victims of Hurricane Katrina|
African People’s Socialist Party
1245 18th Ave. North
St. Petersburg, FL 33705
September 2, 2005 – St. Petersburg, FL USA
The African People’s Socialist Party condemns the abandonment by the U.S. government of hundreds of thousands of African people in New Orleans, in Mississippi, Alabama and the whole Gulf Coast area where they are facing deadly conditions without food, water, shelter and hygiene following the recent hurricane.
The fact that the U.S. government attributes the horrors of the hurricane to nature is condemnable. The consequences of this very predictable disaster cannot be blamed on nature when emergency plans and contingencies were never put in place and the government watched for days as the storm approached and did nothing.
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|Inside U.S.A.: Bush Strafes New Orleans, Where's Huey Long?|
Saturday, September 03 @ 11:37:31 UTC
|by Greg Palast, commondreams.org |
The National Public Radio news anchor was so excited I thought she'd piss on herself: the President of the United had flown his plane down to 1700 feet to get a better look at the flood damage! And there was a photo of our Commander-in-Chief taken looking out the window. He looked very serious and concerned.
That was yesterday. Today he played golf. No kidding.
I'm sure the people of New Orleans would have liked to show their appreciation for the official Presidential photo-strafing, but their surface-to-air missiles were wet.
There is nothing new under the sun. In 1927, a Republican President had his photo taken as the Mississippi rolled over New Orleans. Calvin Coolidge, "a little fat man with a notebook in his hand," promised to rebuild the state. He didn't. Instead, he left to play golf with Ken Lay or the Ken Lay railroad baron equivalent of his day.
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|World Focus: God the father, God the son, God the holy bigot|
Sunday, January 16 @ 16:18:41 UTC
|By Corey Gilkes |
I really did not intend that my return to writing articles would start off with a subject this sensitive, but we are living in too perilous a time for people to be still harbouring nonsensical prejudiced views as if such views did not lead to even graver consequences.
The year 2004 closed with one of the most horrific disasters in history when an underwater earthquake triggered a tsunami that killed upwards of 170,000 people in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India and even as far away as the east coast of Africa. Now I am not going to get into the question of whether or not this disaster could have been avoided – you know, seismologists predicting that the earthquake itself was going to happen, inadequate funding for the placement of sensors and so on – oh no, we got an even bigger fish to fry.
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|World Focus: Horrified By The Destructive Forces Of Nature But...|
Thursday, January 13 @ 21:26:22 UTC
|Why We Are Horrified By The Destructive Forces Of Nature But Accept Our Own Violence|
by Lucinda Marshall, CommonDreams.org
The recent avalanche of American generosity towards those whose lives have been destroyed by the horrific damage of the Tsunami offers a troubling contrast to our callousness towards those whose lives have been wrecked by the man-made horrors of war. The uncomfortable reality is that the purposeful suffering inflicted by armed conflict is more morally tolerable than suffering caused by natural disasters.
To understand this dichotomy of conscience, consider why wars are fought. They are not fought to liberate a people or bring democracy to a country. The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq had little to do with liberating women or throwing the Taliban and Saddam Hussein out of power and even the White House now admits that there were no Weapons of Mass Destruction. These wars, like all wars, have been fought because of greed and the quest for power and control, and the perceived need to restore honor. They are being fought to maintain and perpetuate a dominator, patriarchal society.
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|World Focus: The Other Man-Made Tsunami|
Friday, January 07 @ 12:15:37 UTC
|by John Pilger|
First Published in The New Statesman
The west's crusaders, the United States and Britain, are giving less to help the tsunami victims than the cost of a Stealth bomber or a week's bloody occupation of Iraq. The bill for George Bush's coming inauguration party would rebuild much of the coastline of Sri Lanka. Bush and Blair increased their first driblets of "aid" only when it became clear that people all over the world were spontaneously giving millions and a public relations problem beckoned. The Blair government's current "generous" contribution is one sixteenth of the £800m it spent bombing Iraq before the invasion and barely one twentieth of a billion pound gift, known as a "soft loan," to the Indonesian military so that it could acquire Hawk fighter-bombers.
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|World Focus: The neocons have a hand in Aceh, too|
Thursday, January 06 @ 16:27:25 UTC
|US support for Indonesia's army is compromising its relief effort
By Sidney Blumenthal, Guardian UK
Two days after the tsunami struck, President Bush, who had made no public statement, was vacationing at his ranch in Texas, and a junior spokesman was trotted out. The offer of US aid was $15m - $2m less than the star pitcher of the Boston Red Sox was paid that year.
On December 27, UN emergency relief coordinator Jan Egeland had criticised wealthy nations for "stinginess". The next day Bill Clinton described the tsunami as a "horror movie", and explained that international leadership was required for a sustained effort once the "emotional tug" waned.
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|World Focus: The victims of the tsunami pay the price of war on Iraq|
Wednesday, January 05 @ 13:46:47 UTC
|US and British aid is dwarfed by the billions both spend on slaughter |
By George Monbiot, Guardian UK
There has never been a moment like it on British television. The Vicar of Dibley, one of our gentler sitcoms, was bouncing along with its usual bonhomie on New Year's Day when it suddenly hit us with a scene from another world. Two young African children were sobbing and trying to comfort each other after their mother had died of Aids. How on earth, I wondered, would the show make us laugh after that? It made no attempt to do so. One by one the characters, famous for their parochial boorishness, stood in front of the camera wearing the white armbands which signalled their support for the Make Poverty History campaign. You would have to have been hewn from stone not to cry.
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|World Focus: Death and Life in the Andaman Islands|
Tuesday, January 04 @ 13:40:20 UTC
|When Worlds Die With Them|
By Gary Leupp, counterpunch.org
I'd been wondering about the Andamans and Nicobars. These are hundreds of small islands that rise out of the Andaman Basin northwest of the Indonesian island of Sumatra. They stretch out five hundred miles towards the Bay of Bengal, and constitute a Union Territory of India with their capital at Port Blair. Most of the islands are uninhabited, the whole archipelago's population only some 350,000. The people are mostly from the Indian mainland, but there are also "tribals" of what the New Delhi calls "Mongoloid" and "Negrito" stocks.
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|World Focus: Bush and the Tsunami: The Petulant and the Petty|
Monday, January 03 @ 21:36:11 UTC
|By Brian Cloughley, counterpunch.org
He never fails, does he? Never fails, that is, to reduce world catastrophes and international dramas to the lowest common denominators of petty petulance, malevolence and spite. I write of the latest efforts by Bush to smear a public figure; in this case Mr Jan Egeland, of the United Nations. Being a senior UN official naturally makes him an attractive and even mandatory target for the spleen of Bush, but this instance of senseless insult highlights the ethos of the Bush regime : in any circumstances in which it is imagined there might be the slightest criticism implied of the mighty Emperor, ignore the moral imperatives and go for the weakest jugular you can find. Then get the media to state what you said over and over again until the original comment is lost in the fetid muck of Bush propaganda.
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