Four Years of Waiting

I share with you just one story.  This is just one story. One story, from one person. I meet people every day and hear story after story.  Every day, people who have lived through their own personal trauma.  Like yesterday, the taxi driver.

Teenage Prisoner

 I want to learn Arabic so I study from a book and make flash cards in my free time....which is good.  I don't have a huge social life here but I am slowly meeting people and feeling people out.  So when I have nothing to do, I study!  And then when I am bored with studying, I walk around the old city to the shops and practice my Arabic with people.  The hospitality here is incredible.  Everyone is welcoming me in and inviting me for tea or coffee.  Arabs are famous for their hospitality.  But as I meet people, I hear their stories.  Every day I hear stories about how it is to live here with the occupation. The topic of conversation is always the struggle they live with.  It is hard to deal with.  There is so much pain and suffering here.  I can feel it in the energy and see it in people's eyes when I talk to them.

Crossing the Checkpoint and that Damn Wall

I am not really traveling anymore.

Stories from Behind the Wall-Introduction

My mother suggested writing a book.

Nick Turse: One Boy, One Rifle, and One Morning in Malakal

[Note for TomDispatch Readers: Nick Turse continues his eye-opening reportage on American policy toward Africa today with a piece about the Obama administration and child soldiers. I just wanted to remind you of one thing: his new Dispatch Book on the U.S.

'Tis the Season to Fete War Criminals

William & Mary Honors War Criminal

Exclusive: Condoleezza Rice has crossed the threshold into esteemed celebrity – a welcomed speaker at this year’s College of William and Mary commencement – despite her record as the liar who sold the illegal war in Iraq and choreographed the torture techniques for use at CIA “black sites."

By Ray McGovern

Nothing better illustrates the extent to which the United States has turned its back on the rule of law than when the likes of Condoleezza Rice are asked to address graduates and receive doctoral degrees honoris causa at university commencements. Ms. Rice – in my view a war criminal – was accorded those honors Saturday by the College of William and Mary, the second-oldest college in the U.S.

Give to TSA Watch

The fundraising drive at TSA Watch has been stuck at $6,921 for weeks. The TSA is sexually assaulting people at airports in this country every day. We and many other organizations have been documenting it for years. I don’t know what else people need to know in order to care.

Democracy American Style - Macedonia

Macedonia is about to experience Democracy American Style. The nation’s misfortune is simple. It occupies strategic territory of keen interest to the United States and Russia.

“Russia's Stroitransgaz said on Thursday it will build a gas pipeline across Macedonia, which could eventually be used as part of a route to supply Europe with Russian gas via Turkey”. Reuters, Mar 12

18 May: International Museum Day: The Advancement of Learning and Culture

By Rene Wadlow

         18 May has been designated by UNESCO as the International Day of Museums to highlight the role that museums play in preserving beauty, culture, and history. Museums come in all sizes and are often related to institutions of learning and libraries. Increasingly, churches and centers of worship have taken on the character of museums as people visit them for their artistic value even if they do not share the faith of those who built them.

         Museums are important agents of intellectual growth and of cultural understanding. They are part of the common heritage of humanity, and thus require special protection in times of armed conflict. Many were horrified at the looting of the National Museum of Baghdad when some of the oldest objects of civilization were stolen or destroyed. Fortunately many items were later found and restored, but the American forces had provided inadequate protection at a time when wide-spread looting was predicted and, in fact, was going on. More recently, we have seen the deliberate destruction of cultural heritage in the museum of Mosul by ISIS factions. Today, there is deep concern for Palmyra as ISIS and government troops battle near Palmyra, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The US needs the Iceland option: If ‘Too-Big-to-Fail’’ Means Too-Big-To-Jail’ It Should Mean ‘Too-Big-to-Be’

By Dave Lindorff

 

            In a couple of days, the so-called US Justice Department will be announcing an “agreement” reached with five large banks, including two of the largest in the US -- JP Morgan Chase and Citigroup, the holding companies for Chase and Citibank -- under which these banks or bank holding companies will plead guilty to felonies involving the manipulation of international currency markets.

Someone Should Challenge Former CIA Chief Michael Morell About This

The Phony 'Bad Intel' Defense on Iraq

Editor Note: Jeb Bush’s stumbling start to his presidential bid has refocused attention on Official Washington’s favorite excuse for the illegal, aggressive and disastrous war in Iraq – that it was just a case of “bad intelligence.” But that isn’t what the real history shows. NO WAY was the intelligence "mistaken."  Far worse -- it was out-and-out FRAUD.

By Ray McGovern

Presidential aspirant Jeb Bush this week may have damaged his chances by flubbing the answer to an entirely predictable question about his big brother’s decision to attack Iraq.

Ukraine/Russia News - May 16, 2015


Ukraine Recession Deepens as Economy Shrinks 17.6% in the First Quarter, Conflict with Russia-Backed Separatists Slashes Industrial Output - WSJ


Shadow economy in Ukraine in 2014 up to record high since 2007, to 42% of GDP: Trade Ministry - interfax.com


Due to worsening of the balance of payment Ukraine to hold WTO consultations on additional import tax on June 11 - interfax.com


Ukraine eyes strategic investors in sell-off of state-owned assets - The Economic Times


Ukraine says creditors must accept debt proposals - Reuters


Ukraine minister Natalie Jaresko says ‘all options on the table’ for debt (VIDEO) - FT.com


VIDEO: Natalie Jaresko on Ukraine Debt Restructuring - YouTube


Military confrontation in Eastern Ukraine costs state coffers $5-7 mln a day: Finance Minister Jaresko - interfax.com


The battle with the country's creditors threatening to wreck a bailout plan constructed by the International Monetary Fund - Worldbulletin News


IMF calls deadline for Ukrainian state debt restructuring by June - Ukrinform


IMF mission commences work in Ukraine: Finance Ministry - TASS


Russia would not take part in the "debt operation" of the Ukraine’s debt restructuring and awaits the next repayment installments in June - Tass


Russia-Ukraine conflict overshadows EBRD meeting - Business New Europe


EBRD To Invest More In Central Europe, Ex-Soviet Union, But Not Russia - rferl.org


Russia votes against EBRD financial plan for 2016-2020 - TASS


Gas purchases from EU to account for at least half of all imports: Yatseniuk - interfax.com


Yatseniuk hopes for cut in price of EU gas after Paris talks - interfax.com


Kiev insists on revision of gas transit agreement with Russia: Ukraine’s PM - TASS

 

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Ukraine president enacts controversial laws banning Soviet symbols - digitaljournal.com


Ukraine’s law honors nationalist groups who helped the Nazis carried out the Holocaust while also killing 100,000 Polish civilians - Reuters


Ukraine has lost control of more than 400km of its Russian border in the east of the country - uatoday.tv


Ukraine navy left high and dry after Crimea losses - Yahoo News


US House of Representatives allocates USD 300 million to Ukraine in defense bill to provide lethal weapons to Ukraine - uatoday.tv


US Senator McCain turns down Ukraine advisor role - Yahoo News

 

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At Foreign Ministers Meeting EU and Nato vow to step up cooperation to counter Russian 'hybrid warfare' - ibtimes


Russia hopes NATO will stop attempts of absorbing Georgia, Ukraine: envoy - TASS


Russia Says Ukraine Attendance at NATO Spring Session Puts Minsk Commitment Into Question - Sputnik International


Russia says to boost military presence in Crimea in response to NATO E. Europe expansion - RT News


Russia Says It Can Deploy Nuclear Arms to Crimea - Washington Free Beacon


Russia backs legislation to force out ′undesirable′ foreign groups - DW.DE


Evidence Mounts That Russia Supplied Buk Missiles To Ukraine Separatists - rferl.org


VIDEO: A 60 Minutes Australia Exclusive This Sunday: Who shot down MH17? - amp.twimg.com 


Russia: More than 200 Russian Soldiers Killed in Ukraine, Says Nemtsov Report - occrp.org


Russian Defense Ministry Dismisses Claim of Russian Troops in Ukraine - Russian peacekeeper


Top Russian Detective Removed From Nemtsov Murder Case - rferl.org


PayPal Blocks Russian Account For Nemtsov Report On Ukraine War - rferl.org


Facebook Is Pro-Russia, Senior Aide To Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko Says - ibtimes.com


Facebook’s Zuckerberg Responds to Ukrainians’ Complaints, But Is His Answer Enough? - Global Voices Advocacy


Russia’s First GDP Slump Since 2009 Signals Milder Recession, Russia’s economy fares better than forecast by all analysts - Bloomberg

 

Putin Buying Dollars Again Shows Worst of Crisis Is Over - Bloomberg Business


Ruble Up Against U.S. Dollar, Despite Central Bank Forex Purchases - The Moscow Times


France offers Russia 785 mn euros to ditch warship deal: report - Yahoo News


Russia remains EU’s third biggest trade partner: Foreign Ministry review - TASS

 

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Top 10 Activist Errors

The number one error, engaged in by the majority of people, is failing to be an activist. The world's going to hell, countless situations can be easily improved, lives can be saved, and most people just sit there and do nothing. Others actively work to make matters worse. So, if you're working for peace and justice, you're among the tiny minority that's pretty much got the big stuff right. If constructive criticism drives you into despair, please stop reading this article right now and just continue what you're doing with your life. You have my gratitude.

If you're open to hearing some suggestions, for whatever they may be worth (and yes, of course, this list of errors will exclude those that I am myself guilty and unaware of), read on:

1. ELECTIONISM. We need elections but do not now have them in the United States, not at the federal level. Working for election reforms is one of the most important things anyone can do. But taking time off from activism to focus on elections is the biggest waste of resources we engage in. Election reform will come through creative nonviolent activism, education, organizing, media, disruption, resistance, and protest. It won't come through elections. Registering voters is not activism. Creating automatic registration, as just done in Oregon, is activism. Please stifle your compulsion to ask me who I'm voting for. You don't ask me if I want to win the lottery. (I do, but I will not buy a ticket or devote my life to staring at one.)

2. OBAMANISM. As bad as taking a break from activism every election cycle, is thinking and acting like a voter and a campaigner rather than an activist every day of every year, cheerleading for a team of corrupt officials rather than for policies, reforms, and actions that you support. "The nationalist," said Orwell, "not only does not disapprove of atrocities committed by his own side, but he has a remarkable capacity for not even hearing about them." Nationalism is a huge problem, and its language, which has peace activists using the word "we" in saying "We are bombing Afghanistan," may contribute to identification with crimes. But the problem of managing not to even hear about them applies to partisanship as well. If a Republican were picking men, women, and children to murder on Tuesdays, you'd see protests.

3. TOKENISM. "Black people are dumb." "Muslims are violent." These are understood to be ignorant hate speech. But "Women make better presidents" is not frowned on quite so much, despite its exactly equal idiocy. The problem is not the demographic characteristics of the president. The problem is having a single individual with the powers of a god, in debt to sociopathic billionaires, in a system dominated by militarism and corruption. We won't change it with a female or gay or Latina corporatist warmonger.

4. STRATEGISM. Winning a first and a second and a third step down a path to peace or justice is not best achieved through the means that many activists think of as "strategic." If you tell someone that they should halt one war so that the military can be better prepared for other wars, you weaken your argument against the one war, and you provide an argument for future wars. If you oppose the weapons that don't work, you give legitimacy to the far worse weapons that do work. If you object to a gimmick that boosts weapons spending over a mandated limit by transferring funds from a war budget, you shouldn't do so in a way that suggests either budget is acceptable at all, or in a way that suggests war spending is preferable to non-war-spending or budget trickery. Pre-compromising doesn't get you a compromise result; it gets you incoherence and lack of believability. A young woman pointing out to Jeb Bush that his brother (and Hillary and a few hundred others) created ISIS does a lot more to move people against war than do the strategies coming out of DC peace groups. War is counterproductive on its own terms, immoral, illegal, and catastrophic. Its funding should be eliminated. Our job is to demand that. A small reduction is a first step toward our goal.

5. IMPOTENTISM. The most pervasive and powerful propaganda is that of powerlessness. Telling yourself and each other that you are powerless is no different than Judith Miller repeating CIA lies about WMDs. It's exactly as ridiculous and exactly as damaging. We are not powerless. We quite easily have an impact frequently and could quite easily have a much bigger one. Expecting fairness won't help. We have to work uphill, but it's perfectly doable. Being impatient won't help. We have to keep working however long it takes and however few help out. Self-flagellation won't help. The money is against you and money is powerful. It's not your fault you haven't saved the world, but it might be thanks to you that your grandchildren save it.

6. PAROCHIALISM. We have to form uncomfortably large coalitions, and we really don't want to. I'm not advocating what I critiqued above as strategism. Don't sell your soul. Don't promote destructive ideologies for short-term gain. But don't be scared of guilt-by-association. Be willing to stand with people on an issue whose views and actions you deeply oppose on other issues.

7. LOCALISM. It's far more satisfying to find peace in your heart or sustainability in your backyard than to take on the military industrial complex. But if the earth dies, so will you. There are local and hyper-local angles that contribute to the greater cause. Cities and states can change nations. But individual action alone is not enough. Even small group action aimed too near is not enough. If everybody with solar panels on their roofs had put half the money into a movement to create public solar arrays, we'd have them.

8. FREUDISM. In a popular, simplistic notion of nonviolent communication, one never persuades anyone through rational argument. This is a claim, by the way, that comes out of an ideology supposedly dedicated to respecting people and their "needs." Apparently among those needs is not the need for a good reason to believe something. It would of course be equally simplistic to assert that all one ever needs are facts, or to ignore the age-old wisdom that it is hard to get someone to believe something they are paid not to. But when I tell people that college is free in other countries, their jaws drop, and it's not 30 seconds before they're saying it should be that way in the U.S. When I talk to non-self-selected groups about ending war, the majority say at the end that they have been moved toward believing that war can and should be ended. Facts are not enough, but they are one of the main things the corporate media deprives us of, and one of the key components of activism. They do nothing to help us see another's point of view if we're unwilling to look. They do nothing to alleviate high levels of fear. But it would be a mistake for us to become inversions of Edward Bernays working to manipulate people in a kinder, gentler manner.

9. FETISHISM. Here's a little secret. The people who speak the viewpoints that serve big money are not smarter, wittier, pithier, or better at framing a topic. They're on the air because they speak the viewpoints that serve big money. They may be more eloquent than you. They may be less so. But trying to think and sound like them in general is a quite risky proposition and completely unnecessary. There is nothing we need more than better media and better use of existing media by its readers, listeners, and viewers. There is no smarter place to invest as activists. But what we lack is not spokespeople. What we lack is microphones.

10. PINKERISM. "But haven't you heard? War is going away on its own? I heard it from someone who read a review of a book by Steven Pinker." War is not going to go away on its own. It is not even going away with our help. But it could go away if we really get our act together.

World Can't Wait - 3 panels at the Left Forum

World Cant' Wait will host 3 panels at Left Forum from May 30-31st, 2015 at John Jay College New Building, 524 W. 59th St. NYC. 

Deep Into Drone Wars & Secret Ops: What's the "War on Terror" Coming To?The invasions and occupations of the Bush regime have given way to the secret operations and drone strikes of the Obama era. Growing U.S. forces are carrying out secret ops in 150 countries; conventional and drone strikes are actively attacking Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia and spreading into North Africa. This poses significant challenges to anti-war opposition within the U.S. How do we expose and oppose these new and fundamentally illegitimate and unjust actions?

A Call for Conscientious Objection


By Dieter Duhm

You have no enemies. People of another faith, another culture or another color are not your enemies. There is no reason to fight against them.

Soldat_KatzeThose who send you to war do not do so for your interest, but for their own. They do it for their profit, their power, their advantage and their luxury. 
hy do you fight for them? Do you gain from their profit? Do you share in their power? Do you share in their luxury?
And against whom do you fight? Did your so-called enemies do something to you? Cassius Clay refused to fight in Vietnam. He said the Vietnamese did not do anything to him.
And you, GIs: Did the Iraqis do something to you? O
r you, young Russians: Did the Chechenyans do something to you? And if yes, do you know what kind of cruelties your government committed against them? 
Or you, young Israelis: Did the Palestinians do something to you? And if yes, do you know what your government did to them? Who fabricated the injustice you are about to fight against? Do you know what powers you serve when you drive with tanks through conquered areas?

Who, for heaven’s sake, fabricated the injustice for whose pretended abatement youth are sent to war? Your governments, your own legislators, the rulers of your own country fabricated it.
It is fabricated by corporate groups and banks, the arms industry and militaries which you serve and whose war commands you obey. Do you want to support their world?
If you do not want to serve their world then ignore war service. Ignore it with such insistence and power that they stop recruiting. “Imagine war was declared and nobody showed up” (Bertolt Brecht). No one on Earth has the right to force another person to go to war.
If they want to draft you into war service, turn the tables. Write to them and tell them where and when and in which socks, underwear and shirts they must report in. Tell them, in no uncertain terms, that they must go to war themselves from now on if they want to fulfill their objectives. Use your connections, your media sources, the power of your youth, and your power to turn the tables. If they want war they must get into tanks and dugouts themselves, they must drive through mine fields and they can get cut by shrapnel themselves.

There would no longer be war on Earth if those who fabricate these wars had to fight the battles themselves, and if they had to experience in their own body what it means to be mutilated or burnt, to starve, to freeze to death or to faint from pain.
War is the opposite of all human rights. Those who lead war are always wrong. War is an active cause of endless disease: crushed and burned children, bodies torn to pieces, destroyed village communities, lost relatives, lost friends or lovers, hunger, cold, pain and escape, cruelty against the civilian population – this is what war is.

Nobody is allowed to go to war. There is a higher law beyond the laws of rulers: “Thou shalt not kill.” It is the moral duty of all courageous people to refuse war service. Do it in large numbers, and do it until nobody wants to go to war anymore. It is an honor to refuse war service. Live this honor until everyone recognizes it.

A soldier’s uniform is the fool’s dress of slaves. Command and obedience is the logic of a culture that is afraid of freedom.
Those who agree to war, even if it is only to obligatory military service, are themselves guilty of complicity. To obey military service goes against all ethics. As long as we are human beings we must put all our effort into stopping this madness. We will not have a humane world as long as military duty is accepted as societal duty.

The enemies are always the others. But think about it: If you were on the “other” side, you yourself would be the enemy. These roles are exchangeable.

“We refuse to be enemies.” The tears shed by a Palestinian mother for her dead child are the same as the tears of an Israeli mother whose child is killed in a suicide bombing.

The warrior of the new era is a warrior of peace.
One has to have the courage to protect life and to become soft inside if our co-creatures are treated with harshness. Train your body, strengthen your heart and stabilize your mind to achieve the soft power which prevails against all resistance. It is the soft power which overcomes all harshness. You all come from the love between a man and a woman. So love, worship and foster love!

“Make love, not war.” This was a profound sentence from American conscientious objectors at the time of the Vietnam War. May this sentence move in all young hearts. And may we all find the intelligence and the will to follow it forever.

In the name of love,
In the name of the protection of all creatures,
In the name of the warmth of all that has skin and fur,
Venceremos.
Please support: “We are Israeli reservists. We refuse to serve.”
http://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2014/07/23/we-are-israeli-reservists-we-refuse-to-serve/

William Astore: America's Mutant Military

In September 2001, the Bush administration launched its “global war on terror,” to which its supporters later tried to attach names like “the long war” or “World War IV.” Their emphasis: that we were now engaged in nothing less than a multi-generational struggle without end.  (World War III had theoretically been the Cold War.)  In fact, only the “war on terror” would stick and, in 2009, even that would be tossed over

Don’t Grade Justice on a Warped Curve: Assessing the Case of Jeffrey Sterling

Yes, I saw the glum faces of prosecutors in the courtroom a few days ago, when the judge sentenced CIA whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling to three and a half years in prison -- far from the 19 to 24 years they’d suggested would be appropriate.

Yes, I get that there was a huge gap between the punishment the government sought and what it got -- a gap that can be understood as a rebuke to the dominant hard-line elements at the Justice Department.

And yes, it was a positive step when a May 13 editorial by the New York Times finally criticized the extreme prosecution of Jeffrey Sterling.

But let’s be clear: The only fair sentence for Sterling would have been no sentence at all. Or, at most, something like the recent gentle wrist-slap, with no time behind bars, for former CIA director David Petraeus, who was sentenced for providing highly classified information to his journalist lover.

Jeffrey Sterling has already suffered enormously since indictment in December 2010 on numerous felony counts, including seven under the Espionage Act. And for what?

The government’s righteous charge has been that Sterling provided information to New York Times reporter James Risen that went into a chapter of his 2006 book “State of War” -- about the CIA’s Operation Merlin, which in 2000 provided Iran with flawed design information for a nuclear weapon component.

As Marcy Wheeler and I wrote last fall: “If the government’s indictment is accurate in its claim that Sterling divulged classified information, then he took a great risk to inform the public about an action that, in Risen’s words, ‘may have been one of the most reckless operations in the modern history of the CIA.’ If the indictment is false, then Sterling is guilty of nothing more than charging the agency with racial bias and going through channels to inform the Senate Intelligence Committee of extremely dangerous CIA actions.”

Whether “guilty” or “innocent” of doing the right thing, Sterling has already been through a protracted hell. And now -- after he has been unemployable for more than four years while enduring a legal process that threatened to send him to prison for decades -- perhaps it takes a bit of numbness for anyone to think of the sentence he just received as anything less than an outrage.

Human realities exist far beyond sketchy media images and comfortable assumptions. Going beyond such images and assumptions is a key goal of the short documentary “The Invisible Man: CIA Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling,” released this week. Via the film, the public can hear Sterling speak for himself -- for the first time since he was indicted.

One of the goals of the government’s assault on whistleblowers is to depict them as little more than cardboard cutouts. Aiming to dispense with such two-dimensional portrayals, the director Judith Ehrlich brought a film crew to the home of Jeffrey Sterling and his wife Holly. (On behalf of ExposeFacts.org, I was there as the film’s producer.) We set out to present them as they are, as real people. You can watch the film here.

Sterling’s first words in the documentary apply to powerful officials at the Central Intelligence Agency: “They already had the machine geared up against me. The moment that they felt there was a leak, every finger pointed to Jeffrey Sterling. If the word ‘retaliation’ is not thought of when anyone looks at the experience that I’ve had with the agency, then I just think you’re not looking.”

In another way, now, maybe we’re not truly looking if we figure that Sterling has received a light sentence.

Even if the jury’s guilty verdict was correct -- and after sitting through the entire trial, I’d say the government didn’t come close to its burden of proof beyond reasonable doubt -- an overarching truth is that the whistleblower(s) who provided journalist Risen with information about Operation Merlin rendered a major public service.

People should not be punished for public service.

Imagine that you -- yes, you -- did nothing wrong. And now you’re headed to prison, for three years. Since the prosecution wanted you behind bars for a lot longer than that, should we figure you got a “light” sentence?

While the government keeps harassing, threatening, prosecuting and imprisoning whistleblowers for public service, we’re living in a society where corrosive repression continues to use fear as a hammer against truth-telling. Directly countering such repression will require rejecting any claim or tacit assumption that government prosecutors set the standard for how much punishment is too much. 

_____________________________ 

Norman Solomon’s books include War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death. He is executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy and coordinates its ExposeFacts project. Solomon is a co-founder of RootsAction.org, which has encouraged donations to the Sterling Family Fund. Disclosure: After the guilty verdict, Solomon used his frequent-flyer miles to get plane tickets for Holly and Jeffrey Sterling so they would be able to go home to St. Louis.

Focus: Hillary Clinton - May 14, 2015


Federal judge gives State Department until September to hand over Clinton documents to Citizens United (VIDEO) - Daily Mail


Hillary Clinton email case reopened by federal judge following joint request by the State Department and Judicial Watch - Washington Times


State Department blames FOIA backlog on Hillary Clinton - WashingtonExaminer.com


Judicial Watch Statment: Federal Court Reopens State Dept FOIA Lawsuit - Judicial Watch


VIDEO: Judicial Watch’s Tom Fitton on The Dana Show: Reopened FOIA Lawsuit About Clinton Emails - YouTube


Government grants to the Clinton Foundation during Hillary's tenure as secretary of state have still not been publicly disclosed - Reuters


State Dept OK'd Bill Clinton speech requests within days in a short email: 'We have no objection’, that earned him nearly $50 million - Newsday


Clinton facing new ethics questions on role in Boeing deal, after landing a $3.7 billion deal company donated $900,000 to Clinton Foundation and $250,000 for Bill Clinton’s speech - Fox News


VIDEO: New ethical questions about Clinton's role in Boeing deal - Fox News


Clinton's Chevron ties, oil company that stood to lose billions in an environmental lawsuit funneled donations to the Clinton Foundation while it lobbied the State Department - Washington Examiner


Devastating Timeline Reveals the Transfer of Half of U.S. Uranium Output to Russia as Hillary Clinton's Foundation Bags $145 Million - Breitbart


Report: Top H-1B Outsourcing Firm Paid Bill Clinton $260K for Speech During Hillary's Tenure at State Dept - Breitbart


Why Is an Israeli-American Billionaire Pouring Millions into the Clinton Foundation? - National Review Online


Foreign donors pledge new support for Clinton Foundation efforts during a conference in Morocco - WashingtonExaminer.com


While Hillary Clinton Refuses to Answer Questions About the Clinton Foundation’s Foreign Donors, Bill Clinton Hobnobs with Saudi Royalty in Morocco - Washington Free Beacon


WSJ: Clinton Foundation’s explanation for why it was divided into three, legally separate tax-exempt organizations is “misleading and false” - wnd.com

 

Rep. Blackburn to IRS: Investigate Clinton Foundation Tax Status - Breitbart


Wall Street analyst: ‘Shut down Clinton Foundation’ - wnd.com


The Clintons vs. a Charity Watchdog, they wanted Charity Navigator to remove the foundation from a watch list — NYMag


VIDEO: Clintons Tried to 'Strong-Arm' Charity Watchdog After Poor Review of Foundation - CBS


If Clinton is elected, family foundation could face changes - The Washington Post


---------------------------------------------------

Clinton Foundation Donors Fill Hillary’s Campaign Coffers - Washington Free Beacon


From Listening Tour to Fundraising Frenzy: Manhattan Moguls Embrace Hillary Clinton - Bloomberg Politics


Correct The Record registering with the Federal Election Commission as a stand-alone Hillary Clinton super PAC - POLITICO


Is New Hillary Clinton Super-PAC Pushing Legal Boundaries? - Bloomberg Politics


Hillary Clinton will not be at Benghazi Committee next week: official - NY Daily News


Trey Gowdy vs. Hillary Clinton with no end in sight - POLITICO


Benghazi Committee Releases Interim Report - Speaker.gov


REPORT: Interim Progress Update The Select Committee on the Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attacks in Benghazi -Chairman Trey Gowdy


Hillary Clinton Hasn't Answered a Press Question in 21 Days (And Her Opponents Are Taking Notice) - ABC News


RNC Launches #AskHillary Petition Challenging Clinton's Media Silence - Breitbart


Here’s a clock that counts the minutes since Hillary Clinton answered a press question - The Washington Post


Rand Paul returns to trolling Hillary with fake to-do list - WashingtonExaminer.com


POLL: More than Half of Americans Wouldn’t Consider Voting for Hillary Clinton - Washington Free Beacon


POLL: Some 44 percent of voters think Clinton is less ethical than the typical politician - Fox News


Clinton’s claim that illegal immigrants pay more in taxes than some corporations - The Washington Post


Hillary slams 20-week abortion ban - TheHill


Federal lawsuit filed against Ohio's voting system by Hillary Clinton’s top campaign lawyer and others - The Columbus Dispatch


Inside the Univision-Clinton network, The ties between the Clintons and the Spanish language television network run deep - POLITICO


How Bill Clinton’s Library Promotes Hillary Too - TIME


Bill Clinton tells Letterman he would live in White House — if Hillary asked him to (VIDEO) - The Washington Post


VIDEO (Full Interview): Bill Clinton on David Letterman Late Show - YouTube

 

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A New Dark Age

By Robert C. Koehler

“What struck me” journalist Christian Parenti said in a recent Truthout interview, referring to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, “was the fact that these local towns and states around the region were sending the only resources they had to New Orleans: weapons and militarized gear.

“After 30 years of the War on Drugs and a neoliberal restructuring of the state at the local level, which is not a reduction of the public sector but a transformation of the public sector, the only thing local governments had were weapons.”

Parenti’s observation summed up a deep sense of puzzled frustration I’ve been feeling for a long time, which has been growing in intensity since the Reagan era and even more so since 9/11 and the unleashed Bush agenda. Fear, exploited and unchecked, triggers a deep, “rational” insanity. We’re driving ourselves into a new Dark Age.

The driving force is institutional: government, the mainstream media, the military-industrial economy. These entities are converging in a lockstep, armed obsession over various enemies of the status quo in which they hold enormous power; and this obsession is devolving public consciousness into a permanent fight-or-flight mentality. Instead of dealing with real, complex social issues with compassion and intelligence, our major institutions seem to be fortifying themselves – with ever-increasing futility – against their imagined demons.

Parenti went on, in his interview with Vincent Emanuele: “So, less money for public housing, more money for private prisons. It’s a literal transfer of resources to different institutions, from a flawed social democratic institution like public housing, to an inherently evil, but still very expensive and publicly funded institution, like prison.”

As American society militarizes, it dumbs itself down.

The only surprising aspect to a recent story in the U.S. edition of The Guardian, for instance – about how the Houston office of the FBI broke its own rules in beginning an investigation of opponents of the Keystone XL pipeline – was how unsurprising it was.

In essence, the FBI office violated the department’s internal rules – “designed,” according to The Guardian, “to prevent the agency from becoming unduly involved in sensitive political issues” – by beginning a surveillance operation against anti-pipeline activists without receiving high-level approval to do so. Furthermore, “the investigation was opened in early 2013, several months after a high-level strategy meeting between the agency and TransCanada, the company building the pipeline,” The Guardian reported.

“… At one point, the FBI’s Houston office said it would share with TransCanada ‘any pertinent intelligence regarding any threats’ to the company in advance of a forthcoming protest.”

Perhaps the only surprising thing about this revelation is that the agency has internal rules designed to keep its nose out of sensitive political issues. Obviously, they’re easily circumvented. What’s not surprising is the corporate-FBI alliance to stand tough against “environmental extremists” or the agency’s lumping of environmental protests with other “domestic terrorism issues” – its pathological fear, in other words, of peaceful protest and civil disobedience and its inability to see the least bit of patriotic value in their cause.

This is the case despite the long, honored tradition of protest and civil disobedience in the United States and the widespread public awareness of the need to protect our environment. Doesn’t matter. In the realm of law enforcement, a simple moralism too often prevails: Get the enemy.

Imagine, just for a moment, an American law enforcement institution that operated out of an emotional state other than armed self-righteousness; that regarded the security it was established to protect as a complex matter that required cooperation and fairness and was ill-served by intimidation. Imagine a law enforcement institution capable of learning from past wrongs and not automatically donning riot gear in the face of every challenge to social conditions – and not automatically manning the firehoses.

What I see our powerful, status-quo institutions doing is arming themselves against the future. Consider the enemies: poor people, immigrants, protesters of all sorts . . . whistleblowers.

“A federal court in Alexandria, Virginia sentenced former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling to three and a half years in prison on Monday in a case that has received widespread condemnation for revealing the ‘rank hypocrisy’ of the U.S. government’s war on whistleblowers,” Common Dreams reported.

Sterling was convicted, on circumstantial evidence, of leaking classified info to New York Times journalist James Risen about a bizarre CIA operation called Operation Merlin. If true, Sterling committed the crime of embarrassing the U.S. government by outing an ill-conceived CIA plan to pass flawed information about nuclear-weapon design to Iran, which may actually have furthered Iran’s weapons program. The government has no right to hide its operations – and certainly not its mistakes – from the public. By pretending that it’s defending “our” security by doing so, even as it ignores and fails to invest in true measures of security, such as a rebuilt social safety net, it squanders its legitimacy.

And the more legitimacy it squanders, the more it militarizes.

Robert Koehler is an award-winning, Chicago-based journalist and nationally syndicated writer. His book, Courage Grows Strong at the Wound (Xenos Press), is still available. Contact him at koehlercw@gmail.com or visit his website at commonwonders.com.

© 2015 TRIBUNE CONTENT AGENCY, INC.

A REAL MEMORIAL DAY PARADE!

From Know Drones:

On Sunday, May 24, 3 pm (Rain date, Mon, Memorial Day, May 25, same time), gather at Peace Park, behind Village Hall, in New Paltz, NY for a sidewalk march to honor victims of governmental and corporate militarism, such as victims of: drone killings, other acts of war violence, Guatanamo, police militarism and racism and gender violence, and ecocide (think fracking, Lac Megantic, the rain forest, the oceans, the PA forest, etc.) One major theme will be: "This isn't ISIS, this is US"

Barbara Kidney, Drone Alert – Hudson Valley, an organizer of the march, said:
“We realize people may be away or committed to other plans on Memorial Day weekend. We decided to do this event despite that because we feel it is urgent to present to the community a real Memorial Day event, meaning one that does not glorify militarism on the Memorial Day weekend.

“We will also honor the protectors and champions of life, healthy community, and unalienable rights, such as Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, Earthfirst! and Hugh Sampson (the Army helicopter pilot who intervened to save people from his fellow military during the My Lai massacre).” 

Feel free to bring signs to honor victims and/or champions of your choosing.  The march will end with picnicking at Hasbrouck Park.

An organizational meeting will be held on Sunday, May 17 from 7:30 to 8:30 pm at Inquiring Minds Bookstore, 6 Church Street, New Paltz.

Other groups are very welcome to co-sponsor, Barbara said.  You can text her at (845) 313-8035 or call Andrew Dalton at (845) 699-3051.

MAY 17 DRONE WAR PROTEST AT WHITEMAN AFB IN MISSOURI.

From Know Drones:
 
On Sunday, May 17, from 2 – 3:30 pm there will be an anti-drone war rally at the entrance of Whiteman AFB in Knob Noster, MO.   Cars will leave at 12:30 pm from 912 E. 31st Street, Kansas City, MO for the base.  To carpool, call 913-206-4088.
 
Brian Terrell, co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Non-Violence (VCNV), will speak at the rally. He served 6 months in a federal prison camp for resistance at Whiteman AFB in 2012 after crossing a line on the entry road to protest remote control of killer drones from Whiteman and other bases.

Brian says, protesters plan to stay on the public right-of-way and will invite the base commander and officers “to join us to break bread and converse,” and that no civil resistance is planned.  Last year Georgia Walker, of PeaceWorks-KC, and Kathy Kelly, of the Chicago-based VCNV, did civil resistance at Whiteman AFB. Georgia is on probation for a year, and Kathy served 3 months in a federal prison camp.

The rally is sponsored by PeaceWorks-KC, Mid-MO Fellowship of Reconciliation and PeaceWorks-Mid-MO.

Stop U.S. Drone Warfare via Ramstein

From Know Drones:
 
Please plan a protest in your area on or before May 26 urging the German Government to order the U.S. to close the satellite relay station at Ramstein Air Base that is essential to U.S. drone surveillance and attacks globally.  Numerous German human rights and antiwar organizations have issued the joint call, “Stop U.S. Drone Warfare Via Ramstein” and are asking U.S. organizations to support the call.
On May 27th a vigil will be held at the German Parliament in Berlin to draw attention to the opening of the court case of the bin Ali Jaber family of Yemen against the German Government. The family lost two of its members to a U.S. drone attack in 2012 and demands that Germany stop allowing Ramstein to be used for U.S. drone strikes in Yemen. Under German law, extra-judicial killings are illegal.

At this point, protests in the U.S. are being planned as follows:

  • May 21 – Syracuse, NY – 4:15 – 5 pm at the front gate of Hancock Air Base, timed at the shift change.
  • May 26 – New York City – 11:30 am – Outside the German Consulate, 871 United Nations Plaza, on First Avenue between East 48th and 49th Streets.

The German Embassy is in Washington, DC, and there are also German consulates in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami and San Francisco.   Any courthouse would be an appropriate point for a witness. http://www.germany.info/Vertretung/usa/en/03__Consulates/00/__Consulates.html

Speaking Events

2015

August 27, Chicago

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