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Greg Guma: Excuses for Bad Behavior: “Suspending” Civil Liberties is Nothing New

On one of TV’s tabloid news shows, the hype for a recent segment went like this: “You’d better watch what you say.” Then the announcer explained that, in these dangerous times, expressing certain opinions can get you fired. It was very casual, offhand, just another bit of info-tainment for viewers accustomed to hearing that their Read more…

Julian borger & ewen Macaskill: US targets Saddam

The Pentagon and the CIA have begun preparations for an assault on Iraq involving up to 200,000 US troops that is likely to be launched later this year with the aim of removing Saddam Hussein from power, US and diplomatic sources told the Guardian yesterday. President George Bush’s war cabinet, known as the “principals committee”, Read more…

Patrick Keaney: Trade Secret

WHEN HIS BODY was recovered, it was clear that Aury Sara Marrugo spent his last hours alive in agony. His gums had been butchered. A blowtorch had been used to sear the flesh under his arms and the soles of his feet. Over 70 small incisions were found on his corpse, and strong acid had Read more…

Colombia support Network: FARC Assassinates Peasant Leaders

CINEP (Centro de Investigacion y Educacion Popular) and the Diocesis of Apartado are sorry to communicate to national and international opinion, that on February 8, 2002, JOSE LINCE MARTINEZ and ORLANDA MOSQUERA were assassinated by FARC-EP in Taparal, municipality of Riosucio, Department of Choco Mr. Martinez and Ms. Mosquera were elected leaders of their community Read more…

Marcela Valente: Argentina’s Rebellion in the Neighborhoods

BUENOS AIRES, Feb 13 – Neighborhood assemblies are springing up in cities throughout Argentina, particularly in the capital and surrounding areas, as a groundswell of people seek to change the political landscape amidst the country’s social and economic collapse. Many assembly participants are young people who are fed up with the political parties they say Read more…

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George Monbiot: The Corporate Takeover of Childhood

For many children, a new school term begins with apprehension. But yesterday it wasn’t just the children who were worried about what they might encounter. Every term now brings another government scheme, to re-finance, outsource, subcontract, reclassify, zone or cluster some aspect of the handling of our children. And parents, reasonably enough, are becoming ever Read more…

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Edward Herman: Final Solution in the Occupied Territories

Years ago many of us wondered how things that were obviously “beyond belief” could be made to seem normal by the intellectual culture and mainstream media. Deborah Lipstadt, in a book entitled Beyond Belief, which dealt with the Holocaust and its treatment in the West, showed how easily the media could do this by pushing Read more…

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Doug: Unpleasant and Unwanted Questions on Iraq

Analogies are difficult given world power realities, but consider the following. “The Chinese News Agency reported today that the Chinese Government has decided to oust US President George W. Bush.the debate is over. China has decided that the US nuclear, chemical and biological weapons programs pose too great a threat to world security. Chinese intelligence Read more…

Dick Nichols: Class struggle looms in Venezuela

February 13, 2002. – by CARACAS – Venezuela’s wealthy elite is using every resource at its disposal to force President Hugo Chavez Frias to retreat or resign. Their offensive reached its highest point yet on January 23, when their ‘March for Freedom and Democracy’ drew anything between 80,000 and 250,000 onto the streets of Caracas Read more…

Jason Adams: WSF2002: Hopes for a True International

The World Social Forum 2002 (WSF) was by almost any measure a colossal success, cleanly overcoming a plethora of obstacles that had stood quite glaringly in the way of a unified conference with full dignity for the many diverse constituencies present. The changes this year were numerous and important even if they were also often Read more…

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Judy Rebick: A people’s globalization for a better world

Puerto Alegre, Brazil: Two events last weekend made it crystal clear that the anti-globalization movement is alive, well and kicking. In New York City, thousands demonstrated against corporate globalization at the World Economic Forum. It was an entirely peaceful demonstration. As one demonstrator put it, “just being on the streets here was confrontation enough.” Even Read more…

Isabel Hilton: Forget Drugs, This is About the Guerrillas

In the normal run of business, the customer is disinclined to pay for shoddy goods. If someone lets you down then comes back with his hand out, you might send him packing, as you would any mountebank or snake oil salesman. Why, then, does the intelligence community consider itself exempt from this elementary rule of Read more…

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Norman Solomon: Determined Struggle Brings A Radio Network Back To Life

The art of the deal is a media dream: Savvy achievers get to the top. Guile and artifice — even outright deception — may well be part of the game, but there’s nothing like success. One way or another, money and centralized power end up calling the tunes. Or so the media script often goes. Read more…

Phil Reeves: Rebellion Grows Among Israeli Reserve Officers

Israel’s armed forces are struggling to contain the most serious internal challenge of the 16-month Palestinian intifada after more than 100 combat reservist soldiers signed a petition saying they would not serve in the occupied territories. At least four of the signatories have been stripped of their command positions, and the army’s chief of staff, Read more…

John Manthorpe: Bush Got Carried Away With Axis Of Evil

The reduction of the great events sweeping the world to the argot of the video game would be worth a smile if the implications were not so chilling. Since U.S. President George W. Bush’s state-of-the-nation address last week, we know we are in a war of the worlds pitting The Great Satan against The Axis Read more…

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George Monbiot: Both Saviour and Victim

The more powerful a nation becomes, the more it asserts its victimhood. In contemporary British eyes, the greatest atrocities of the 18th and 19th centuries were those perpetrated on compatriots in the Black Hole of Calcutta or during the Indian mutiny and the siege of Khartoum. The extreme manifestations of the white man’s burden, these Read more…

Ian Traynor: Afghans Still Dying

Fardin’s world caved in on a bright Sunday morning last October when an American bomb came through the roof of the room where he was sleeping. He was spared physically. But the six-year-old has not uttered a word nor taken a step since. At a quarter to eight on the morning of October 21, exactly Read more…

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Arundhati Roy: Shall We Leave It To The Experts

India lives in several centuries at the same time. Somehow we manage to progress and regress simultaneously. As a nation we age by pushing outward from the middle–adding a few centuries on either end of the extraordinary CV. We greaten like the maturing head of a hammerhead shark with eyes looking in diametrically opposite directions. Read more…

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George Monbiot: America’s Imperial War

Never was victory so bitter. Those liberals who supported the war in Afghanistan, and so confidently declared that their values had triumphed in November, must now be feeling a little exposed. Precisely who has lost, and what the extent of their loss may be, is yet to be determined, but there can now be little Read more…

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Vijay Prashad: Camp X Ray And The Problem Of Torture

On 4 February 2002, the New York Times ran an article on the humanity with which the “detainees” are being treated at Camp X-Ray at the US base at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. One detainee had a long-standing injury to his eyes from a cricket ball, and the surgeon at the camp was going to take Read more…

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Eduardo Galeano: Awards

1. In spite of the terrorists who, with some regularity, are born in its sacred sands, Saudi Arabia is the main bastion of the Western world in the Middle East. It is a democratic monarchy: it sells every day–at low prices–one and a half million barrels of oil to the United States; and it buys Read more…

Thomas Walkom: Bush Counts On War Without End

The war against terrorism is a brilliant construct. It may not have been started by George W. Bush, but it certainly works to his advantage. It has provided oomph to the sagging U.S. economy and a new raison d’etre for the alliance of politicos, defence contractors and security specialists who make up what former U.S. Read more…

Dave Bleakney: BONO, BLOODY BONO

Every generation has an Elvis. Being an Elvis is not only about shaking your hips or making teenagers scream. When things are going bad in the public relations department, a famous entertainer can add pop, sizzle and glamour to the message. Performers sell soap, cars and coca cola. And lately, rich corporations have been in Read more…

Green party Announcement: LOOSE ACCUSATIONS OF

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Members of the Green Party have joined other Americans protesting the manipulation of fears about terrorism in order to violate basic liberties and constitutional rights of due process and fair treatment under the law. “From the round-ups of hundreds of Americans of Middle Eastern descent and Muslims to the application of the Read more…

Amy Pagnozzi: Israeli Reservists Show Uncommon Bravery

It’s as if the first crocus of spring has somehow risen up in the hard, unyielding desert of the occupied territories – arid but for the spilt blood of generations of “enemies” and “martyrs.” Hope for peace is renewed in Israel – all because of the bravery of two reservist soldiers who dared to circulate Read more…

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Marta Russell: Jury Duty

No one really wanted to do jury duty except me. Per my summons I reported at 8 am to the jury administration room of the Los Angeles County Superior Court. Only I was almost late because of an access problem. The parking attendants had directed us all to Level B. Dozens of prospective jurors in Read more…

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Saul Landau: Vicente Fox Merits The Flat Tire Of The Year Award

Last year the first freely elected President of Mexico promised his voters substantial economic growth through his free market plans, a rapid settlement of the Chiapas mess and a campaign to wipe out human rights abuse and corruption. Despite my skepticism, I felt optimistic. After all, by choosing Vicente Fox of the conservative National Action Read more…

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Pervez Hoodbhoy: The Wages of Obedience

Buried under the rubble of the World Trade Centre lies a decade-worth of Pakistani foreign policy. Faced by a furious United States, Pakistan’s establishment abandoned what had earlier been declared as vital national security interests. First, Pakistan junked the mullahs beyond the western border. A still bigger earthquake followed just weeks later as thousands of Read more…

Geov Parrish: Media and Death

Bashing America’s elite papers of record — particularly the New York Times and Washington Post — is generally so easy it gets boring. Every now and then, however, examining the Official Truths revealed by such papers carries significance far beyond simple critiques of biased or irresponsible media. Hence, yesterday, an investigative-style headline on the front Read more…

Peter Morton: Corporations overstated profit

WASHINGTON – U.S. corporate profits last year were overstated by US$130-billion, or about 27%, according to a study to be released today by a London-based think-tank. The Centre for Economic and Business Research Ltd. compared earnings reports from companies listed on the New York Stock Exchange with statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis Read more…

Bryan Rostron: And not a drop to drink

Business is frustrated at the slow pace of privatisation in South Africa, but the poor, reports Bryan Rostron, are already feeling the effects South Africa is slowly being privatised. You see it in the implausible spiderwebs of electricity lines that criss-cross the dusty, impoverished streets of Khayelitsha, Cape Town, where one legal connection illicitly supplies Read more…

Gila Svirsky: Letter from Israel

We knew there would be a big turnout for the peace demonstration last night just from the deluge of pro-peace ads in Ha’aretz the day before – page after page of statements and petitions, all critical of the occupation. Some excerpts: “There is a choice!” An expanded new list of 200 combat officers and soldiers Read more…

Peter Beaumont: Armed to the Teeth

There is a United States special forces dog-handler who meets journalists, diplomats and aid workers off the UN flight to Kabul. His job is to search luggage and ensure the security of US troops in Afghanistan. He is short, gingery and aggressive. His skills at persuasion are limited to shouting at the milling crowd: ‘Stand Read more…

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Laura Flanders: Noam Chomsky, Model Terrorist?

A couple of weeks back, Human Rights Watch announced in their annual World Report that repressive governments around the world are exploiting the “war against terrorism” to clamp down on domestic dissidents. Now comes the news that in Turkey, the chief of terrorism prosecution is targeting publishers of an American dissident’s writings — just as Read more…

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Ted Glick: 2002: Rising Up Stronger and Broader

Imagine this: a Congressional Democrat running for re-election next November with a leaflet that says, “Vote for me! I supported Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld as they waged war in Afghanistan. I kept my mouth shut as, week after week, civilians died from errant bombs. When refugee agencies and the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Read more…

Martin Hunter: Argentina Now: A Democratic Revolution

Argentina is in the midst of a severe socio-economic crisis. By all accounts, the country is essentially bankrupt: burdened with a 150 billion dollar foreign debt, which saps 30% of the GDP in interest payments alone, the unemployment rate has soared over 20% and the ecomomy’s growth rate has plummeted from 8% to less than Read more…

Martin Hunter: Argentina Now: A Democratic Revolution

Argentina is in the midst of a severe socio-economic crisis. By all accounts, the country is essentially bankrupt: burdened with a 150 billion dollar foreign debt, which saps 30% of the GDP in interest payments alone, the unemployment rate has soared over 20% and the ecomomy’s growth rate has plummeted from 8% to less than Read more…

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Rahul Mahajan: The State of the Union and the New Cold War

Any who doubted the characterization of the war on terrorism as a new Cold War had only to listen to the State of the Union address, Bush’s most depressing speech since he launched his unlimited war with his address to a joint session of Congress on September 20, 2001.   The following points, all stunningly Read more…

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Raj Patel: NEO-THATCHERITE ENGLISH PREMIER AN APPALLING DIPLOMAT

By now we are extremely familiar with the sigh of world leaders trying to turn the spotlight away from their domestic inadequacies by embarking on major new foreign policy initiatives. It seems to have been working for George W. Bush, and Tony Blair – who always takes his cues from the man in the White Read more…

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Andrej Grubacic: A Different Balkan is Possible

When I went to Porto Alegre, attending the second World Social Forum, I was in a rather good mood. Namely, I have received news about a creation of a Balkan based network committed to homogenization of the fight for alternative globalization. The name of the paper in my hands was “South Eastern Europe Social Forum”.   Read more…

Debora Mackenzie: Anthrax Attacks

After months of bungled investigation, it now looks certain that America‘s anthrax attacks came from within. The implications are terrifying   THE anthrax attack of 2001 is over. No more powder-laced letters have turned up in the mail since October and no new infections since November. Unless spores are still lurking in someone’s lungs, office Read more…

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John Pilger: Asylum Seekers in Australia

One of my first assignments as a young reporter in Sydney was to go to the airport and ask famous people arriving from overseas what they thought of Australia. There was a checklist; our beer and beaches were near the top, followed by our “mateship”. If the famous person hesitated or, in the case of Read more…

Various Orgs...: SHUT DOWN THE SCHOOL OF THE AMERICAS!

The School of the Americas (SOA), in 2001 renamed the “Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation,” is a military training school for Latin American soldiers, located at Fort Benning, GA.   Over its 56 years, the SOA has trained over 60,000 Latin American soldiers in counterinsurgency techniques, sniper training, commando and psychological warfare, military intelligence Read more…

Roger Burbach: Another World Is Possible

PARIS — For a magic moment, the citizens’ movement was no longer on the defensive. From Seattle to Genoa, via Washington, Prague, Quebec, Nice and a dozen other destinations, the dispiriting decades of unbridled corporate greed and freewheeling financial markets seemed to be drawing to an ignominious close, smothered under their own sheer awfulness. Or Read more…

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Uri Avnery: The Great Game

Some weeks ago, something curious happened: Israel discovered that Iran is the Great Satan. It happened quite suddenly. There was no prior sensational news, no new discovery. As if by the order of a drill-sergeant, the whole Israeli phalanx changed direction. All the politicians, all the generals, all the enlisted media, with the usual complement Read more…

Duncan Campbell: Friends Of Terrorism

His name may sound like that of a character from a Mel Brooks musical but Otto Reich is real enough. He has just been appointed by President Bush as assistant secretary of state for western hemisphere affairs – and both the manner of his appointment and the role he will now play have profound implications Read more…

Dr selim yusuf Gool: “MBEKI IN MUGABE’S FOOTSTEPS!”

South African President Thabo Mbeki’s recent attacks on press freedom and the labelling of Alliance partner, the 2.5 million strong trade union federation the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), as being “part of an international terrorist plot” to undermine his government, signals that the love affair between the ruling African National Congress (ANC) Read more…

Guest Author: Industry Versus Precaution In Massachusetts

Something’s wrong with the kids. Childhood asthma incidence has doubled in the past decade. For children under five it increased by 160 percent between 1980 and 1994. Asthma is now the leading chronic disease in children, affecting 5 million kids in the U. S. Learning disabilities are increasing dramatically. One child in six is afflicted Read more…

Katharine Ainger: Spin on this!

Forget everything you thought you knew about ‘spin’. The work of the big PR multinationals involves a powerful combination of political lobbying, communications strategy, ‘crisis management’, grassroots organizing, and intelligence gathering. Peter Melchett, ex-head of Greenpeace UK, who has taken a consultancy job at the world’s largest PR firm and activists’ cartoon-book villain, Burson-Marsteller (BM), Read more…

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Greg Palast: Eyes-only memos show who done it

In Buenos Aires, the Paris of Latin America, police gunned down two dozen Argentines in December after they chose to face bullets rather than starvation. The nation’s currency had crumbled and unemployment had shot up from a grim 16 percent to millions more than the collapsing government could measure. The economy had been murdered in Read more…

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