Syria/Iraq News - Sep 10, 2014


Ahead of prime time speech, Obama signals readiness to strike Islamic State in Syria - The Washington Post


VIDEO: White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest: Obama has authority to act on IS - YouTube


VIDEO: White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest full briefing about the U.S. strategy against the Islamic State - bloomberg.com


On Capitol Hill, more calls for Obama to seek authorization on IS - CBS News


Obama Said to Seek Billions Extra for Islamic State Fight - Bloomberg


POLL: Americans back Obama on strikes against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria - WashingtonExaminer.com


US Drones, Hunting for IS Leader, Seen Flying over Syrian Airspace - ibtimes


VIDEO: A Syrian citizen records a US drone in the skies over Ar-Raqqah - YouTube


Ex-CIA chief says targeted killings key to stopping Islamic State - CCTV News


Expert: A four-point plan to defeat the Islamic State - Al Jazeera America


Steven Sotloff Was Sold To IS By 'Moderate' Rebels, Family Spokesman Tells CNN - huffingtonpost.com


VIDEO: Steven Sotloff Was Sold To ISIS By 'Moderate' Rebels, Family Spokesman - CNN


White House Denies Steven Sotloff Was Sold to IS by ‘Moderate’ Rebels, says FBI is investigating - NBC News.com


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

US seeks UN resolution to outlaw foreign fighters, It would also make it illegal to collect funds for groups like the Islamic State - Yahoo News


Expert: Over 12,000 Foreign Fighters in Syria - ABC News


VIDEO: CNN Analysts Warn Of ‘Unprecedented’ Threat From IS Foreign Fighters - Washington Free Beacon


Kerry to hold Saudi talks on Islamic State, the meeting attended by ministers from Egypt, Jordan, six Gulf Arab states and Iraq - Al Jazeera


Arab Partners Skeptical of US Fight Against Islamic State - teleSUR


Qatar’s Support of Islamists Alienates Allies Near and Far - NYTimes.com


IS received most of its funding from donors in Kuwait and Qatar, often with the knowledge of government officials - Homeland Security News


Hagel finds Turkish help against Islamic State a tough sell - WashingtonExaminer.com


Erdogan’s Turkey: unwilling ally in struggle against Islamic State - Al-Monitor


Why Obama is seeking a Sunni coalition to defeat the Islamic State, The US hopes to avoid the impression it is siding with the Shiites - CSMonitor.com


Obama, Iraq's Abadi discuss Islamic State threat in call: White House - Reuters


Kurds Agree to New Iraq Government, Opening Door to US War Strategy Against IS - Rudaw


Fearing Islamic State attack on Jordan, US steps up sharing of intel - Stripes


Israel Reportedly Providing U.S. With Satellite Intelligence on Islamic State - Algemeiner.com


In fight against Islamic State West widens contacts with Syria's Kurds but suspicion remains - Reuters


U.S. urges China to help with Islamic State in Iraq - The Washington Post


Islamic State advances in Iraq force Syria to cancel wheat deal - Yahoo News


The unlikely alliance of hackers fighting the Islamic State: American hackers, the Syrian Electronic Army, the group Anonymous and Iranians - mashable.com


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

Car bomb kills leaders of major Syrian rebel faction - LA Times


Al Qaeda members mourn Ahrar al Sham, Islamic Front leaders on Twitter - The Long War Journal


Group says Islamic State using weapons meant for moderate rebels - Washington Post


Islamic State: its weapons and where it gets them - The Week UK


How ISIS funds its reign of terror - NY Daily News


How The Islamic State Smuggles Oil To Fund Its Campaign - NPR


Paying For The Caliphate: When IS Members Become Bad Bank Managers In Mosul - Niqash


Insight – In northeast Syria, Islamic State builds a government - euronews


The Islamic State's global reach - Threat Matrix


Behind Islamic State's advance: 'sophisticated, patient and focused' plans - Stripes


IS calls for assassination of Twitter employees - Channel 4 News


VIDEO: IS releases new video: capture and execution of 200 Syrian troops at the Tabqa airbase- YouTube


VIDEO: In new video IS flaunts captured jets and artillery at the Tabqa airbase - YouTube

 

To contact Bartolo email peaceloversingle_at_gmail.com (replacing _at_ with @)

World Beyond War’s David Hartsough Featured in Street Spirit

Iraq War Protest      David Hartsough is featured in a long article and interview in Street Spirit. The article begins:

A Quaker’s Ceaseless Quest for a World Without War

After a lifetime of civil rights sit-ins, blockades at nuclear plants, and acts of anti-war resistance, David Hartsough remains a utopian believer in peace and justice. His latest campaign is perhaps the most quixotic of all. It dreams the impossible dream of a world that has abolished war.

By Terry Messman

      During a long lifetime spent working for peace and social justice, David Hartsough has shown an uncanny instinct for being in the right place at the right time. One can almost trace the modern history of nonviolent movements in America by following the trail of his acts of resistance over the past 60 years.

READ MORE.

*****

The Street Spirit Interview with David Hartsough, Part I

People would spit at us in the face. They put lit cigarettes down our shirts, and punched us in the stomach so hard we would fall on the floor, and then they kicked us. The American Nazi Party came, yelling white supremacist nonsense and telling us to go back to Russia.

Interview by Terry Messman

Steet Spirit: Looking back at a lifetime of nonviolent activism, can you remember the first person who helped set your life on this path?

David Hartsough: Gandhi. My parents gave me Gandhi’s book, All Men Are Brothers, on my 14th or 15th birthday. And Martin Luther King who I met when I was 15.

Spirit: Why was Gandhi’s All Men Are Brothers such an inspiration?

READ MORE.

*****

 

 

The Street Spirit Interview with David Hartsough, Part II

 Governments have the power to throw us in jail and shoot at us and intimidate us, but they don’t have the power to kill our spirits. They certainly didn’t kill Brian’s spirit. Nuremberg Actions show what people can do to stop our government from fighting wars and causing misery around the world.

Interview by Terry Messman

Spirit: David, when were you hired as staff organizer for the American Friends Service Committee in San Francisco?

Hartsough: I was hired in 1973 to be part of the Simple Living Program. My wife Jan and I shared the staff position. Then I began the AFSC Nonviolent Movement Building Program in 1982.

Spirit: As an AFSC staff, how did you become involved in the massive protests at the Diablo Canyon nuclear reactor in the late 1970s and early 1980s?

READ MORE.

*****

 

 

Waging Peace: Global Adventures of a Lifelong Activist

by David Hartsough

Published by PM Press, November 2014, 272 pages

Available on Amazon.com

* * * * * * *

Book Readings by David Hartsough

Sunday, November 2, 1 p.m

San Francisco Friends Center, 65 Ninth Street, San Francisco

Sunday, November 9, 7 p.m.

Berkeley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 1924 Cedar (at Bonita), Berkeley

Come meet author and activist David Hartsough. David will read from his new book Waging Peace: Global Adventures of a Lifelong Activist, and discuss his adventures in peacemaking.

Washington’s seedy propaganda campaign: Satellite Images of Alleged Russian Artillery in Ukraine Come A-Cropper

By Dave Lindorff


In the ongoing propaganda campaign mounted by the Obama administration to claim that Russia has “invaded” Ukraine from the east, it offered up some grainy black-and-white satellite images purporting to show heavy Russian military equipment inside the Ukraine. 


What can Afghan youth do amidst global violence?

Dear Friends of Peace,

From one of the persistent foci of wars, the Afghan Peace Volunteers launched the Borderfree Community Centre of Nonviolence on 7th August, 2014, in wishing to work nonviolently with the human family across all borders to abolish the socioeconomic, environmental, educational and military wars that are being waged in Afghanistan and the world today.

At the Borderfree Community Centre of Nonviolence, two Afghan street kids, Mehdi and Gulsom, describe their dreams to be a doctor and a lawyer.

Six Afghan Peace Volunteers will set off tomorrow to participate in an International Program on Gandhi and Nonviolence in India, organized by Ekta Parishad ( India ), from the 10th of September, 2014 to the 26th of September, 2014.

Please follow a photo journal of their journey, which will be updated at: Afghan youth’s Wish to “Stop fighting!”

Warmest wishes from Afghanistan,

Hakim with the Afghan Peace Volunteers

Ukraine News - Sep 9, 2014


Ukraine ceasefire overall held, still shaky: OSCE - Reuters


VIDEO: I have feeling this will work. People want it: OSCE on Ukraine ceasefire - YouTube


Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe: Text of the Protocol on Ceasefire in Ukraine - Council on Foreign Relations


Petro Poroshenko Announces Release of 1,200 Ukrainian Prisoners in Mariupol Trip - ibtimes.co.uk


Poroshenko, On Visit To East, Vows Mariupol Will Stay Ukrainian - KPLU


President Poroshenko Puts Mariupol Defenses on High Alert - RIA Novosti


VIDEO: President Poroshenko in Mariupol - YouTube


VIDEO: Ukraine’s Coast Guard Admiral: Mariupol's Port Won’t Be Taken - YouTube


VIDEO (English) - Press Conference of Ukraine Military Spokesman Lysenko, Sep 8 - Ukraine Crisis Media Center


PM Yatseniuk says Ukraine ‘will impose martial law if truce fails’ - London Evening Standard


Yulia Tymoshenko: “Minsk protocol” threatens Ukraine's integrity - Charter’97


Interview with Igor Plotnitsky, Prime Minister of the Luhansk People’s Republic - RIA Novosti


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

Amnesty: Evidence of war crimes by Ukrainian and separatist forces, Satellite images of Russian involvement (PHOTOS) - Amnesty International


Amnesty: Ukraine must stop ongoing abuses and war crimes by pro-Ukrainian volunteer forces - Amnesty International


REPORT: Abuses and war crimes by the Aidar Volunteer Battalion in the north Luhansk region - Amnesty International


VIDEO: Russian Army in Ukraine: Amnesty International offers fresh proof in Ukraine Today interview - YouTube


Donbass Battalion Member Says Azov Broke Ceasefire In Mariupol - Interpreter_Mag


VICE News correspondent embeds with the Azov Battalion, a volunteer militia based in Mariupol that is allegedly linked to neo-Nazism - VICE News


Foreign Policy talks to deputy leader of ‘pro-govt’ Azov Battalion - RT News


Preparing for War with Ukraine’s Fascist Azov Battalion - foreignpolicy.com


VIDEO (Ukrainian): Azov NG battalion commander talks about Mariupol defense - YouTube


No official conclusion despite long investigation into mass death in Odessa - ITAR-TASS


Separatist ambush on Aidar battalion during ‘ceasefire', 11 KIA (VIDEOS, PHOTOS) - Ukraine@war


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

Eyewitnesses: Russians 'controlled BUK missile system’ in the MH17 disaster- BBC News


Images Show the Buk that Downed Flight MH17, Inside Russia, Controlled by Russian Troops (PHOTOS) - bellingcat


New Data on MH17 Crash Questionable: Russian Civil Aviation Union - RIA Novosti


Further Reports of Russian Paratroopers Killed in Ukraine - The Interpreter


Russia Reports Troop Deaths In Ukraine, But Calls Them 'Volunteers' - NPR


Ukraine Says Russian Armor and Heavy Weaponry Still Crossing Border - Interpreter_Mag


Another 40+ Russian armor on the move Sept 3rd (VIDEOS, PHOTOS) - Ukraine@war


Russian T-72BM Visible In Footage Of 'Novorossiya' Parade in Perevalsk (VIDEO) - Interpreter_Mag

 

To contact Bartolo email peaceloversingle_at_gmail.com (replacing _at_ with @)

Calling for a Solution as Big as the Crisis We Face

Originally posted at AcronymTV

Timeka Drew of the Global Climate Convergence in conversation with Dennis Trainor, Jr.

The Global Climate Convergence is calling for AN EMERGENCY GLOBAL GREEN NEW DEAL including:

 

  • Full employment with community-based small businesses, worker co-ops, small farmers & government jobs.
  • 100% clean renewable energy by 2030. International binding treaty for swift, deep cuts to carbon emissions. Wealthy polluting nations pay for technology transfer & climate adaptation.
  • Universal free healthcare & education through college. Affordable housing for all & a moratorium on foreclosures.

Talk Nation Radio: Lindsey German: NATO Should Be Abolished

https://soundcloud.com/davidcnswanson/talk-nation-radio-lindsey-german-nato-lhould-be-abolished

Lindsey German is Convenor of the Stop the War Coalition ( http://stopwar.org.uk ) and was part of the protests and counter-summit at the just-completed NATO summit in Wales. We speak with her about NATO and the state of war and peace in the world. German's books include A People's History of London; How a Century of War Changed the Lives of Women: Work, Family, and Liberation; Material Girls: Women, Men, and Work; Sex Class and Socialism; and Stop the War: The Story of Britain's Biggest Mass Movement.

Total run time: 29:00

Host: David Swanson.
Producer: David Swanson.
Music by Duke Ellington.

Download from Archive or LetsTryDemocracy.

Pacifica stations can also download from AudioPort.

Syndicated by Pacifica Network.

Please encourage your local radio stations to carry this program every week!

Please embed the SoundCloud audio on your own website!

Past Talk Nation Radio shows are all available free and complete at
http://TalkNationRadio.org

and at
https://soundcloud.com/davidcnswanson/tracks

 

The Pentagon — the climate elephant

By Sara Flounders, Source

There is an elephant in the climate debate that by U.S. demand cannot be discussed or even acknowledged. This agreement to ignore the elephant is now the accepted basis of all international negotiations on climate change.

It is well understood by every possible measurement that the Pentagon, the U.S. military machine, is the world’s biggest institutional consumer of petroleum products and the world’s worst polluter of greenhouse gas emissions and many other toxic pollutants. Yet the Pentagon has a blanket exemption in all international climate agreements.

Ever since the Kyoto Accords or Kyoto Protocol negotiations in 1998, in an effort to gain U.S. compliance, all U.S. military operations worldwide and within the U.S. have been exempt from measurement and from agreements on reduction. The U.S. Congress passed an explicit provision guaranteeing U.S. military exemptions. (Interpress Service, May 20, 1998)

The complete U.S. military exemption from greenhouse gas emissions calculations includes more than 1,000 U.S. bases in more than 130 countries around the world, its 6,000 facilities in the U.S., its aircraft carriers and its jet aircraft. Also excluded are its weapons testing and all multilateral operations such as the giant U.S.-commanded NATO military alliance and Africom, the U.S. military alliance now blanketing Africa. The provision also exempts U.S./U.N.-sanctioned activities of “peacekeeping” and “humanitarian ­relief.”

After gaining this giant concession, the U.S. government still refused to sign the Kyoto Accord, thus sabotaging years of international effort to forge an ­agreement.

The provisions of the Kyoto Protocol nevertheless became the basis of all future proposed international meetings on a climate treaty, including Copenhagen 2009, Cancun 2010, Durban 2011, Doha 2012 and the United Nations upcoming 21st Conference of the Parties on Climate Change meeting in Paris in 2015.

In all past international conferences it was again and again the U.S. government that sabotaged the meetings and refused to be bound by any treaty. The Obama administration on Aug. 27 again confirmed that at the U.N. meeting in New York in September to prepare for the 2015 Paris meeting, only a nonbinding agreement could be put forward.

Role of grassroots activists

Unless the climate activists at the grassroots level challenge this exemption of the U.S. military and begin to focus a laser light on the most dangerous source of global warming and climate change, the movement will become lost in vague generalities, utopian hopes and toothless accords.

The only hope that the mass outpouring in September in New York City will have an impact is if independent voices can begin to consciously challenge the greatest global polluter.

Exposing the horrendous social costs of U.S. militarism must also be part of the challenge. Washington’s military role acts to constantly reinforce at every level the repressive state apparatus.

Keep Space for Peace Week

October 4-11, 2014

International Week of Protest to

Stop the Militarization of Space

Stop Drones Surveillance & Killing

No Missile Defense

No to NATO

End Corporate Domination of Foreign/Military Policy

Convert the Military Industrial Complex

Deal with climate change and global poverty

List in formation

  • Aberporth, West Wales (Sept 21) CND Cymru has a demonstration at the drones testing centre totally in the spirit of Keep Space for Peace Week. heddwch@cndcymru.org
  • Andover, Massachusetts (Oct 9) Vigil in front of Raytheon, 350 Lowell St (Rte 133) 7:00-8:00 am. Merrimack Valley People for Peace brian@quirk.ws
  • Bath Iron Works, Maine (Oct 4) Vigil across from administration building on Washington Street (Navy Aegis destroyers outfitted with “missile defense” systems built at BIW) 11:30-12:30 am   Smilin’ Trees Disarmament Farm (207) 763-4062
  • Berlin, Germany (Oct 4) Fly Kites, Not Drones! Gather in front of the German Parliament at 11:00 am and fly kites to make clear that we do not want to be threatened by drones and we do not want people anywhere to be threatened by drones. Then at 15:00, we will meet in parks throughout the city and fly kites to continue our protest. kampfdrohnen.aechten.berlin@gmx.de
  • Berlin, Germany (Oct 3-5) Anti-War Conference Berlin at Haus der Demokratie und Menschenrechte. An initiative of scientists and journalists against militarization in Germany and in the member states of European Union and NATO. The conference will focus on new dimensions in the preparation and conduct of war through the use of information technology, media propaganda and recently developed weapons such as drones. http://antikriegskonferenz.de/
  • RAF Croughton, England (Oct 5) Rally at U.S. satellite communication base, March to main gate 1 mile - starts Croughton village 12.00 midday, Returns 3:00 pm, Oxfordshire Peace Campaign, oxonpeace@yahoo.co.uk  
  • Indore, India (Oct 9) Protest meeting “Space for Peace and Not for War” at Indore in the State of Madhya Pradesh by Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development Studies. Dr.Tapan Bhattacharya will be the Organiser.  jnrao193636@gmail.com
  • King of Prussia, PA (Oct 11) Noon - 3pm, large MQ-9 Reaper Drone Replica Display and kite flying in front of Lockheed Martin (L-M) at intersection of Mall & Goddard Boulevards.   L-M is making a killing in drone war and surveillance technology, building the remote-controlled unmanned planes and satellites that direct the drones and launch their deadly Hellfire missiles which L-M also builds. For more info Brandywine Peace Community, (610) 544-1818 brandywine@juno.com  or www.brandywinepeace.com 
  • Kyotango City, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan (Oct 4) Mass meeting against the construction of US ‘missile defense’ X- band radar base in front of the gate of construction site at 15:00. Organized by Citizen's Coalition for No US Base in Kyoto. Contact Atsushi Fujioka fujioka@ec.ritsumei.ac.jp
  • Maine Walk for Peace & a Sustainable Future (Oct 11-20) Peace walk led by Nipponzan Myohoji from Rangeley to North Berwick. The walk will protest the growing militarization of the Maine economy and will call for conversion to sustainable production to help deal with climate change. Sponsored by Maine Veterans For Peace.   www.vfpmaine.org 
  • Menwith Hill, England (Oct 11) Demonstration at NSA Spy Base in Yorkshire focused on drones in particular and US missile defense in general. 6-8 pm.   Sponsored by CAAB  mail@caab.corner.org.uk  or 01423 884076
  • Nagpur, India (Oct 4) Demonstration “Space for Peace and Not for War” by the students of Matru Sewa Sangh Institute of Social Work. Nagpur, Maharashtra State. Prof. Jyoti Niswade will be the organizer  jnrao193636@gmail.com
  • Nagpur, India (Oct 5) Mass Squatting (sitting in protest) “Space for Peace and Not for War” by the S.E.C. Rly Pensioners Assn and Progressive Railway Women's Organisation at Nagpur, State of Maharashtra. (Ms. Seema Sondiya and Mrs. J. Saraswati are the organizers)  jnrao193636@gmail.com
  • Nagpur, India (Oct 6) “Space for Peace and Not for War” Rally of students of National Institute of Social Work, Nagpur in the State of Maharashtra. jnrao193636@gmail.com
  • Olympia, Washington (Sept 27) Holly Gwinn Graham in concert at Traditions Cafe informing about space week and inviting actions and participation in vigiling during the week  tohollygg@comcast.net
  • Stockholm, Sweden (Oct 4) Standing demo in front of parliament, Mynttorget. 11.00-13.00 Banners and handing out leaflets against ‘nEUROn’ drone which will be launched in 2015 in the north of Sweden at North European Aerospace Test Range. nEUROn is an experimental Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle being developed with international cooperation, led by the French company Dassault Aviation along with Switzerland, Spain, and Greece. Contact: Agneta Norberg lappland.norberg@gmail.com
  • Stuttgart, Germany (Oct 4) Protest against Drones and AFRICOM  at 02:00 pm at AFRICOM Headquarters. More information to come!
  • Tucson Arizona (Oct 4) Vigil at Davis-Monthan AFB drone base at 10:00 a.m. (Craycroft gate at Golf Links Rd.) Contact Felice or Jack Cohen-Joppa at nukeresister@igc.org  (520)323-8697
  • Tucson Arizona (Oct 7) Vigil at Raytheon Missile Systems (making Star Wars “kill vehicles”, pilotless drones, cluster bombs, cruise missiles and much more) from 7 - 8  a.m. (Hermans Rd. entrance to the plant, 3rd traffic light south of Valencia on Nogales Highway, the extension of South 6th Ave.) Contact Felice or Jack Cohen-Joppa at nukeresister@igc.org  (520) 323-8697
  • Vandenberg AFB, CA (Oct 1) Vigil at space warfare base from 3:30 to 4:45.  Contact Dennis Apel at  (805) 343-6322
  • Volk Field, Wisconsin (Oct 4) Air National Guard Base 90 minutes north of Madison.  They train pilots to fly Shadow drones used for surveillance and target acquisition.  Vigiling at the gates for 2 1/2 years.  Plan to go to a rest area on Interstate about 10 miles south of Volk Field.  There is a lot of traffic there and we will leaflet and talk to people about what is happening at Volk Field.  Joyfirst5@gmail.com
  • Weld County, Colorado (Oct 4) Protest vigil at N8 nuclear missile silo on the 12th Anniversary of our Sacred Earth and Space Plowshares II, 2002.  We join all the other lovers of space, land, water and air people and creatures who know and trust that peace is possible.

-        Keep Space for Peace Week is co-sponsored by the Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom, KnowDrones.com and the Drone Campaign Network (UK)

-        October 4 is also a Global Action Day Against the Use of Drones for Surveillance & Killing and is being sponsored by a host of groups around the world.  See more at http://globaldayofaction.nationbuilder.com/

Resources:

  • Download our full-size space week poster at: http://www.space4peace.org/actions/Keep%20Space%20for%20Peacer%20Poster%202014.pdf

Drone firms bought influence at NATO summit

By REPRIEVE
 
Arms companies which provide key components for the drones used by the US to carry out secret strikes in violation of international law bought access to last week's NATO summit, research by legal charity Reprieve has found.
 
Among the firms which paid up to £300,000 to ‘exhibit’ at the summit in Newport, Wales were:

  • General Dynamics, manufacturer of the Hellfire missiles used in the vast majority of drone strikes.
  • Raytheon, manufacturer of the targeting system for the ‘Reaper’ drone which, along with the ‘Predator,’ is used by the CIA and other covert agencies to carry out strikes outside of warzones.
  • Lockheed Martin, which acts as a contractor to provide support services for the Reaper and Predator.
  • MBDA, a European firm which is producing ‘Brimstone,’ a variant of the Hellfire missile which it is promoting for use by Reaper and Predator drones.

Strikes carried out by Predators and Reapers flown by the CIA or Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) have proved controversial as they have been carried out in countries with which or in which the US is not at war – such as Yemen and Pakistan.  As a result, they are in violation of both international and domestic law. 
 
Despite having been responsible for hundreds of civilian deaths, they take place with little or no oversight – with President Obama refusing even to formally acknowledge that such strikes are taking place.
 
Commenting, Reprieve Legal Director, Kat Craig said: “The illegal use of drones to carry out secret bombings is one of the most controversial issues around, so it is deeply worrying to see those firms who may profit most from it able to buy access to such a high-level summit.  It is unacceptable that the US’ drone campaign, and the UK’s support for it, has been allowed to remain in the shadows for so long.  President Obama must be far more open about it, as must his European allies, especially the UK and Germany, about the support they provide.  Allowing drone manufacturers to buy access to our politicians behind closed doors is no way to ensure we get the transparency we need.”

The New Realpolitik

By Erin Niemela

The re-emergence of former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and his latest book, “World Order,” has prompted accolades and resentments from across the political spectrum. “World Order” is realism re-emerging in a time of American idealistic, “moral” foreign policy. Kissinger campaigns once again for the Westphalian model of world peace in which nation-states draw borders, balance power, demonstrate mutual respect for sovereignty and work to manage conflict, and peace, accordingly.

Kissinger’s realism and humility, as Time Magazine’s Walter Isaacson emphasizes in his Sept. 6 overview of the book, are probably in order for a nation constantly intruding violently in a multitude of conflicts under the guise of democracy, human rights and policing morality. But while a dose of realism is certainly needed in the U.S., Kissinger’s realism is missing the slap-in-the-face reality that strategies and borders drawn by elites with the intention of creating world order and peace are fundamentally irrelevant in the face of massive determined civil resistance.

For a guy who claims to be a realist, Kissinger sure doesn’t seem to recognize the real conditions nation-states are currently facing.  Recent revolutions and movements for change around the world – in the Middle East/North Africa (MENA) region, Asia, the Americas – have brought collective injustices, identity and agency to the forefront of affairs of state, foreign and domestic. We see over and over again that the modern nation-state is no longer nearly as empowered by its monopoly on violence. The existence and security of a nation-state depends now on serving and satisfying citizen needs more than overweening violence or crafting cunning foreign policies. Even discussing world peace and order without including popular demonstrations and civil society is, well, unrealistic. If we want stability, we’re going to have to face real collective injustices on the ground first. That’s where the real power lies, less latent and more real every time it flexes and increases self-awareness.

In his Sept. 6 National Public Radio interview, Kissinger states that the threat of Iran lies with its opportunity to “reconstruct the ancient Persian Empire … in the rebuilding of the Middle East that will inevitably have to take place when the new international borders [are] drawn. Because the borders of the settlement of 1919-’20 are essentially collapsing.” ISIS, however, “is a group of adventurers with a very aggressive ideology. But they have to conquer more and more territory before they can become a strategic, permanent reality.” That’s Kissinger’s realism – power comes with permanence and territorial conquest, and this stable control is determined by elite border-drawers with strategic interests.

What new realists know is that territorial control and monopolized violence are outdated forms of power. Motivated, disciplined people with a collective grievance are the most genuine threat to nation-state stability and security.  Erica Chenoweth and Maria Stephan’s 2011 book, “Why Civil Resistance Works,” demonstrated this threat when their study of 323 maximal goal campaigns (overthrowing dictatorships or authoritarian regimes) found that nonviolent people power movements were twice as likely to succeed as violent insurgencies.

With this kind of knowledge, Iran is less threatening because it’s not just a permanent territory full of “mad mullahs” who can tell people where and when to fight and with which weapons. Iran is full of, well, Iranians. Real people who value education, use gadgets, share photoshopped memes and wear jeans; people who have collective efficacy and, realistically, more capacity to rein in any disruptive behavior (especially when it comes to the mutually assured destruction of even one 'tiny' nuclear war) as any Westphalian-inspired model. ISIS is full of empowered people too, but its overreaching violence will inevitably be its downfallwhen Syrian and Iraqi people take control (if the U.S. would stop bombing them, of course.)

Kissinger should, but fails to, realize the irony that borders – whether those of a regional or geographic nature or those along identity or political lines – are collapsing in the MENA region for one major reason: the people who live within those borders know they had no part in drawing them and are continually recognizing that they can now take part. This makes the Westphalian world order model of elite border drawing even more unrealistic. When will Western-European elites learn that people aren’t going to continue to just follow orders, to build the walls and live within them that the elites desire?

Advocating international governance and respect for law is fine if we take consensus, cultural sensitivity and civil society needs into consideration. But if world leaders want real peace and order, borders and sovereignty, they need to recognize their real dependence on civil society and that they cannot achieve either order or peace without our full and valued consent. That’s the new realpolitik.

Erin Niemela is a Master’s Candidate in the Conflict Resolution program at Portland State University and Editor for PeaceVoice.

Flaws in US Thought–And Some Remedies

by Johan Galtung, 8 Sep 2014 - TRANSCEND Media Service

Kuala Lumpur

Obama faces a “three-headed monster” (INYT 5 Sep 2014): Russia-Ukraine, ISIS, and Asia with a US “pivot”. Show NATO strength in Eastern Europe; crush ISIS (Colin Powell’s 9/11 remedy for Al-Qaeda); 60% of US force and “all but China” treaties in Asia-Pacific.

It is not going to work. Not with Obama-Biden-Kerry, nor with McCain; be it one monster with three heads or three with one each. There is no way in which Donbass will become a peaceful, integrated part of a unitary two-nation Ukraine; the Sunni-Arab world will find ways to integrate and undo Sykes-Picot; and no way in which one Asia-Pacific will choose USA over China. They want both, as the PM of Malaysia, Najib Razak, expresses it so well; eulogizing both.

What Russian invasion?: In-Place Cease-Fire Reached between Government and Rebel Forces in Ukraine

By Dave Lindorff


The separatist rebels of eastern Ukraine and the government in Kiev that controls the Ukrainian army have reached a cease-fire in place that leaves the separatists largely in control of the Russian-majority regions of the eastern part of that country.

Ireland on the Coattails of NATO

this was first published on Shannonwatch.org on the 6th of Sept 2014

 

It will probably surprise many people to know that at least seven Irish Government officials, including one military officer, attended events related to the NATO Summit in Newport, Wales this week. It didn’t get much coverage in the mainstream Irish media, probably because the government told them not to cover it, but it’s something that should be highlighted and challenged.

In answer to a question from Clare Daly TD, Simon Coveney who is our Minister for Agriculture and other stuff that the government doesn’t think is very important (food, the marine and defence), explained that Ireland was invited to attend two meetings at Newport, one for contributors to the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, and one for Defence Ministers from what are called “Partner” countries.

Peace Ecology

With serendipitous timing, as a big march for the climate, and various related events, are planned on and around the International Day of Peace, Randall Amster has just published an important book called Peace Ecology.

This book bridges divides that very much need to be bridged between peace activism and peace academia, and between peace advocacy and environmentalism.  This is, in fact, a peace book for deep environmentalists and an environmental book for deep peace advocates.

Typically, I think, peace activists appear to the peace academic as a bit uninformed, ahistorical, reactive, and negative in the sense of being "against something rather than for something."

Peace academics, I'm afraid, often appear to the peace activist as uninterested in ending wars, uncurious about the evils of wars, unimpressed by the military industrial complex as a cause of wars, and altogether too concerned with the personal virtues of people who are in no way responsible for the scourge of war. It is the rare political studies academic who occasionally can be spotted opposing war or documenting the superiority of nonviolent struggle, whereas the peace studies scholars are essentially advocates of environmentalism and democracy who -- unlike other environmentalists and democrats -- happen to recognize the ginormous roadblock that militarism presents for their agenda. Or so it appears to the activist, who searches in vain for any large academic contingent giving war and war propaganda the full critique they so richly deserve.

The environmentalist, meanwhile, as represented by the larger environmentalist groups and their spokespeople, appears to the peace activist as a dupe or a war-monger, someone who wants to save the earth while cheering on the institution that constitutes its single biggest destroyer. 

The peace activist, when spotted by the otherwise occupied environmentalist, must appear something of a fool, a traitor, or a Vladimir-Putin-lover.

Amster is an academic for peace and the environment with a strong inclination toward activism. Parts of his book could have been written by an environmentalist enamored with war, but most of it could not have been. What Amster is after is a worldview within which we avert the dangers of both war and environmental destruction, including by recognizing their interaction.

War advocates would tell those developing organic communal gardens and gift economies and natural sanctuaries, and other projects that Amster writes about, that "our brave troops" are providing the safe space in which to pursue such luxuries.  Amster would, I think, tell the war advocates that their project is in fact rapidly reducing that space, that these "luxury" efforts are in fact necessary for survival, and that understanding them requires a state of mind that also condemns war as an unmitigated disaster.

"This may seem idealistic," Amster writes of the prospect of a society dedicated to peace, "but consider that it is no more so than continuing on our present course and hoping for a happy ending." 

Amster notes that the New York Times considers it "accepted wisdom" that advocates of protecting the climate must promote the idea that climate change threatens "national security."  The idea is that climate-induced disasters and shortages produce wars. While Amster doesn't say so, this is a view that has been expressed by Bill McKibben, prominent organizer of the upcoming march. If his organization, 350.org, would object each time President Obama sends another 350 troops to Iraq, it would begin taking on the biggest consumer of oil we have: the military. Such an act would be unprecedented for any large U.S. environmental organization.

Of course, in reality disasters lead to wars only when a society chooses to address them with wars, and resource abundance has led to wars as often as scarcity. Sustainability and egalitarianism, Amster argues, can encourage stability, whereas unsustainable exploitation and inequality mean instability and potentially war.  Should we work to limit the level of climate change or to limit its suffering by adapting to it? Amster points out that the same practices can often do both. One that can't, however, is war which exacerbates the problem while in fact failing to adapt to it.

Ian Morris recently published a remarkably stupid book arguing for the merits of war. In it he claimed Thomas Hobbes as a hero of peace who understood the path to peace to lie through imperialist wars and governmental monopoly on violence. Amster provides a healthy rebuttal, pointing out that in fact "civilized" governments oversee very violent societies that have normalized brutal competition by imagining it as inevitable and blinding themselves to the merits of other cultures. Amster leads us to reject Hobbes' most basic assumptions.

Amster does the same for Garrett Hardin's Tragedy of the Commons. If actual human beings were mathematical game pieces driven purely by sociopathic greed and calculation, population growth and prosperity must lead to tragedy. But as human beings exhibit generosity and friendship as often as limitless greed and selfishness, it turns out not to be the existence of open commons that leads to tragedy but the privatization and enclosure of the commons -- or, rather, the abandonment of the life of the commons, that leads inexorably to crisis.

What have we got left that could be treated as commons? Amster suggests air, water, parks, sidewalks, libraries, airwaves, the internet, biodiversity, transportation, Antarctica, open-source software, outer space, and much else. And he provides examples of people behaving accordingly.

Do people developing healthy ways of living necessarily learn that bombing is not a useful response to a throat-slitting by ISIS? Possibly not. But there's another way to see the connection. Control of fossil fuels is a major motivation for wars, and wars are a major consumer of fossil fuels.  In fact it was the desire to fuel the British navy that first created the Western obsession with Middle Eastern oil.  But a society dedicated to peace would not have sought to fuel a navy or to fight wars in order to fuel a navy. A society dedicated to peace would be developing green energy and green lifestyles.

An environmental movement that wanted millions of dedicated participants would want a society committed to peace.  A side benefit would be the freeing up of $2 trillion a year globally, $1 trillion in the United States, that had been used for war preparation but now could be used to quickly end all the pretense that green energy cannot work wonders.

If you live in an area not massively illuminated at night, you can -- simply by walking around after dark -- get a sense of the human built environment utterly transformed by nature. Darkness coats everything.  And in the part of the world I live in, the sound of insects completely dominates the darkness. 

If you live in an area that has proved less desirable for non-"tragic" exploitation than it used to be, you can get a sense of what the non-human world will do to human creations if humanity takes its leave. Streets and buildings will vanish as surely as the dinosaurs. Only nuclear waste will eventually remain as evidence of our species' existence.

Unless we change.

"Save the environment" might not be our best motto, Amster suggests. More to the point might be "Save the humans."

Ukraine News - Sep 6, 2014


Ukraine, pro-Russian rebels reach ceasefire deal - Reuters


VIDEO: Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko Announces Cease-Fire - CNN


VIDEO: Negotiators’ Statements on Ukraine Cease-Fire - NYTimes.com


Why Ukraine truce works for both sides, The ceasefire deal has the potential to become a turning point - BBC News


POLL: Ukraine’s Pro-War Parties Are Collapsing In The Polls - Business Insider


Ukraine president says all prisoners of both side to be freed under ceasefire - Reuters


Kyiv, separatists exchange lists of captives on Friday: Ukraine's former President Kuchma - interfax.com


Kuchma: Working group to be formed by Monday to implement Minsk agreements, in particular the matter of self-government of these regions and the transfer of power to them - interfax.com


Ukraine ready for 'extraordinary’ decentralization steps in some areas of Donbass, Poroshenko says - Belarus News


Military Spokesman: Ukrainian Troops Set to Observe President's Ceasefire Order - RIA Novosti


Donetsk Self-Defense Forces Declare Ceasefire - RIA Novosti


VIDEO (Ukrainian): "Ukraine ceasefire deal agreed at Minsk talks”, rebel leader Zakharchenko confirms - YouTube


First Batch of Humanitarian Aid to Be Sent to East Ukraine Soon: Russia - RIA Novosti


PM Yatsenyuk’ hardline statement on ceasefire: To attain peace we need three points: ceasefire, withdrawal of the Russian army, Russian bandits and terrorists, control over the border - kmu.gov.ua


Ukrainian government intends to approve Yatsenyuk’s border wall plan - ITAR-TASS


Statement by the Donbas Battalion founder Semenchenko regarding the ceasefire (VIDEO) - EUROMAIDAN PRESS


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

NATO Agrees Rapid Response Force With Headquarters in Eastern Europe - rferl.org


Text of the Wales Summit Declaration issued by the Heads of State and Government at the meeting of the North Atlantic Council - NATO


VIDEO: President Obama Holds a Press Conference at the NATO Summit - The White House


TRANSCRIPT: Remarks by President Obama at NATO Summit Press Conference - NewsRoomAmerica.com


Obama: Sanctions Against Russia May Be Lifted If Ceasefire Continues - RIA Novosti


Merkel: Sanctions against Russia may be postponed if there is de-escalation in Ukraine - ITAR-TASS


VIDEO (German): German Chancellor Angela Merkel NATO Press Meeting - YouTube


No solution of Ukrainian crisis without Russia: OSCE chairman - ITAR-TASS


Poroshenko: Ukrainians to decide on accession to NATO - Ukrinform


US unlikely to station its military basis on territory of Ukraine - ITAR-TASS


Before Ukraine, Putin Modernized the Russian Military - Washington Free Beacon


Russia’s Modified Military Doctrine Not Providing for Preventive Nuclear Strikes: former Chief of the General Staff - RIA Novosti


To contact Bartolo email peaceloversingle_at_gmail.com (replacing _at_ with @)

Three Cheers for Canada and Germany

NATO tried to get its members to commit to spending at least 2% of GDP on war preparations. And if a nation got richer it would have to spend more -- not because of any particular supposed need, but just because military spending was to be seen as an end in itself. Well, Canada and Germany blocked the proposal. The U.S., Estonia, the United Kingdom, and Greece already spend over 2% of their GDP, but other NATO nations do not. Read more here.

Veterans For Peace Statement Opposing U.S. Bombing of Iraq and Syria

By Veterans For Peace

The U.S. is racing down a slippery slope towards war in Iraq and Syria. Since Aug. 8, the U.S. has conducted more than 124 airstrikes in Iraq. Approximately 1,000 U.S. troops are now on the ground in Iraq, with at least 350 more currently on their way.

President Obama initially said the bombing was part of a humanitarian mission to assist the Yazidi minority in northern Iraq being threatened by ISIS, the fundamentalist Islamic army that now controls wide swaths of Iraq and Syria. But Obama has now announced an open-ended bombing campaign, and he has ordered Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Secretary of State John Kerry into the region to build military and political coalitions to sustain a long term war against ISIS.

According to the New York Times, President Obama has also authorized U.S. surveillance flights over Syria, reportedly in search of ISIS targets for later bombing missions. The Syrian government has offered to coordinate with U.S. military action against ISIS, the strongest rebel force fighting to overthrow the Assad government in Syria. But the U.S., which has aided ISIS' growth by facilitating the arming and training of rebels in Syria, has not asked permission for its flights into Syrian airspace.

Veterans For Peace members have witnessed the brutality and the futility of war, including the war in Iraq. We were sent to a war based on lies and we became part of the killing of a nation, along with as many as one million of its people. We watched as U.S. policy makers consciously stirred up ethnic and religious divisions, creating the conditions for civil war today.

Veterans know from first hand experience that you cannot bomb your way to peace. More bombing will ultimately mean more division, bloodshed, recruitment for extremist organizations, and a continual cycle of violent intervention.

Last year the American people overwhelmingly sent a message to President Obama and the Congress: No U.S. Bombing in Syria. Last month, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed H. Con. Res. 105 stating that there is no legal authority for U.S. military involvement in Iraq without express Congressional approval. By unilaterally pursuing miltiary action in Iraq and Syria, President Obama is acting in contempt of the American people, as well as of U.S. and international law.

We support the troops who refuse to fight and who blow the whistle on war crimes. Under international law, military personnel have the right and the responsibility to refuse to be part of illegal wars and war crimes. U.S. troops are not the cops of the world. There is no legitimate mission for any U.S. service members in Iraq or Syria. We encourage GI's to find out their rights at the GI Rights Hotline.

Veterans For Peace absolutely opposes U.S. military intervention in the Middle East, no matter what the rationalization. We call on all our members to speak out against any U.S. attacks on Iraq and Syria.

We wish to see a U.S. foreign policy based on true humanitariasm and real diplomacy based on mutual respect, guided by internatianal law, and dedicated to human rights and equality for all.

We call attention to the excellent constructive proposals in a recent letter from 53 National Religious Groups, Academics, and Ministers Urging Alternatives to U.S. Military Action in Iraq.

We applaud the initiatives of several key peace groups and we encourage our members to participate.

Sign Code Pink's letter telling President Obama not to bomb Syria or Iraq.

Sign Peace Action's petition restricting U.S. arms sales around the world.

VETERANS FOR PEACE WORKS FOR PEACE AT HOME AND PEACE ABROAD!

Renowned World Leaders and Activists Say "Don’t Give Up!"

By Ann Wright

 
“Don’t Give Up!” in the face of injustice was the mantra of three of the world's leaders, members of the group called "The Elders” (www.TheElders.org).  In talks in Honolulu, August 29-31, The Elders encouraged activists to never stop working on social injustices. “One must have the courage to speak out on issues,” and “If you take action, you can be a greater peace with yourself and your own conscience,” were some of the many other positive comments given by anti-apartheid leader Archbishop Desmond Tutu, former Norwegian Prime Minister and environmentalist Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland and international human rights lawyer Hina Jilani.
 
The Elders are a group of leaders who were brought together in 2007 by Nelson Mandela to use their "independent, collective experience and influence to work for peace, poverty eradication, a sustainable planet, justice and human rights, working both publicly and through private diplomacy to engage with global leaders and civil society to resolve conflict and address its root causes, to challenge injustice, and to promote ethical leadership and good governance."
 
The Elders include former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, former President of Finland Martti Ahtisaari, former President of Ireland Mary Robinson, former President of Mexico Ernesto Zedillo, former President of Brazil Fernando Henrique Cardoso, grassroots organizer and head of the Self-Employed Women's Association from India Ela Bhatt, former Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs and United Nations Special Representative for Afghanistan and Syria Lakhdar Brahimi and Grace Machel, former Mozambique Minister of Education, United Nations investigation of children in war and co-founder of The Elders with her husband Nelson Mandela.

The Fall of the US Empire-And Then What?

by Johan Galtung, 1 Sep 2014 - TRANSCEND Media Service

Is the title of a book published by TRANSCEND University Press in 2009, now in second printing, and several translations including Chinese. There were two subtitles indicating answers: Successors, Regionalization or Globalization? – US Blossoming or US Fascism?

What is the situation today, five years later?

Successors? UK is militarily with USA to keep Anglo-America as a dominant world force even if a shadow of 50 years ago; France tries to keep its hold on former colonies in Africa; they use NATO-North Atlantic Treaty Organization for military and EU-European Union for political support. In empires the local elites line up to do the killing; yet the Western powers have mainly to do that themselves.

A whiff of SCOTUS skunk: The Odor Seeping Out of Our Criminal Justice System

By John Grant


I just thank God I’m out of this place.
              - Henry Lee McCollum

First there was Ferguson, Missouri and the gunning down of an unarmed black youth and the ad-nauseum follow-up emphasizing over-and-over the shooting officer’s fear. Now it’s the release of two half brothers in North Carolina clearly railroaded into convictions and death sentences by a notoriously remorseless, good-'ol-boy district attorney.

New TCBH! poem: Monster in my Garden

By Gary Lindorff


After yesterday
I’m afraid to go down there
Into my own garden.
I went down after sunset to water and
There it was, crouching
Like a gargoyle among the tomatoes.
I got a good look at it
As I stood there afraid to breathe
While a spray of water
From the hose soaked my shoes.
It had two heads
That look exactly like John Boehner,
Terrible to behold. . .

Ukraine News - Sep 5, 2014

 

In a joint article in The Times newspaper Cameron, Obama vow to stand together in support of Ukraine against Russia - Yahoo News


Text of the joint article by David Cameron and Barack Obama: Strengthening the NATO alliance - GOV.UK


NATO says arms supply to Ukraine up to individual allies - Reuters


Rasmussen: NATO Not Involved in Member States’ Decisions on Military Aid to Ukraine - RIA Novosti


Poroshenko: NATO Members Propose Ukraine Military Cooperation on Bilateral Basis - RIA Novosti


Nato Summit 2014: Nato Members to Provide Precision-Guided Weapons to Ukraine - ibtimes.co.uk


Secretary General: NATO to Allocate Some $19.4 Mln in Aid to Ukraine - RIA Novosti


US to lead multinational exercises in Ukraine, About 1,300 personnel from 15 nations take part including 200 U.S. soldiers - VOA


Here Are The Soldiers US Is Sending To Ukraine - Business Insider


Joint Statement of the NATO-Ukraine Commission, Sept. 4, 2014 - enewspf.com


Russia warns NATO not to offer Ukraine membership of the alliance - Reuters


Putin says he 'cannot be stopped' as NATO warns Russia has 3,000 troops in Ukraine - Mail Online


Text of the 7 Point 'Putin Plan' For Peace In Ukraine - Interpreter_Mag


Pentagon Notes ‘Exceptionally Capable’ Russian Force Along the Ukrainian Border - Defense.gov


Russia’s nuclear forces will hold a large-scale exercise this month along the country’s border with China - The Diplomat


Pentagon Excludes Possibility of War With Russia Over Ukraine - RIA Novosti


Eastern European hopes for permanent NATO bases stymied by Russia - Military Times


US and UK Push for NATO Countries to Increase Military Spending - teleSUR


Can NATO spend smarter? - CSMonitor.com


Protesters stage anti-Nato march in Cardiff, Four arrests - BBC News


VIDEO: Anti-Nato protest in Cardiff - YouTube


VIDEO: NATO Summit Wales 2014 (Day 1, 11 hours) - YouTube


VIDEO: Watch live tomorrow the Nato Summit in Wales - Telegraph


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

Ukraine and rebels back ceasefire, provided that an agreement is signed on a new peace plan - Reuters


Ukraine's president, at NATO summit, voices 'careful optimism' on peace talks with rebels - Daily Courier


Demilitarized zone, OSCE monitoring among E.Ukraine rebels’ peace proposals - RT News


Ukraine crisis: Leaders talk about peace, but in Mariupol, Luhansk and Donetsk, the reality looks more like war - The Independent


Ukraine reinforces defense of Mariupol against rebel attack, army shells rocks Donetsk killing atleast one woman - Reuters


Over 800 servicemen killed in army operation in eastern Ukraine: military spokesman - ITAR-TASS


Spot report by the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, 4 September 2014: The Situation in Mariupol - OSCE


The Dead and the Living in Luhansk - Human Rights Watch


VIDEO: Fear grows as artillery fire rocks outskirts of Mariupol - YouTube


VIDEO: Footage & A Photo From Mariupol For August 4th - Migukin's Blog


VIDEO: Grad rockets destroy Donetsk school and homes - Ruptly


VIDEO: Man shelled as he stood on his balcony in Donetsk - YouTube


Russia redeploys huge convoy of armor in Ukraine (VIDEO) - Ukraine@war


A website for search of Russian servicemen, which disappeared in Ukraine, was created in Russia - Info Resist


Appeal to the world psychiatric community on behalf of Ukrainian servicewoman Nadiya Savchenko detained in a Russian mental hospital - EUROMAIDAN PRESS 


Russia Stocks Climb 3rd Day on Ukraine Truce as ECB Spurs Ruble - Bloomberg


To contact Bartolo email peaceloversingle_at_gmail.com (replacing _at_ with @)

Beyond The People’s Climate March

Originally posted at AcronymTV

Dennis Trainor, Jr. of Acronym TV in conversation with Timeka Drew, a grassroots organizer with the Global Climate Convergence.

In two weeks the Peoples Climate March in New York, organized by 350.org, is expected to draw as many as 200,000 people. The march is to take place only days before a special UN meeting called by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to discuss the November 2015 U.N. Climate Conference in Paris.

No! Your data is not safe!: Hackers Used Government Spyware to Data-rob iCloud

By Alfredo Lopez


One sensationally reported incident this week exposes a dual threat: your data isn't safe on a corporate-controlled "cloud" and spying software made for police and government agencies makes it completely accessible.

The Fall of the US Empire-And Then What?

by Johan Galtung, 1 Sep 2014 - TRANSCEND Media Service

Is the title of a book published by TRANSCEND University Press in 2009, now in second printing, and several translations including Chinese. There were two subtitles indicating answers: Successors, Regionalization or Globalization? – US Blossoming or US Fascism?

What is the situation today, five years later?

Successors? UK is militarily with USA to keep Anglo-America as a dominant world force even if a shadow of 50 years ago; France tries to keep its hold on former colonies in Africa; they use NATO-North Atlantic Treaty Organization for military and EU-European Union for political support. In empires the local elites line up to do the killing; yet the Western powers have mainly to do that themselves.

China is very active economically abroad, some of it structural violence; however, the military component has not been used aggressively.

Russia went into the “near abroad”, CIS-Commonwealth of Independent States, Ukraine; but for other reasons. The gift of Crimea to Ukraine in 1954 was a mistake to be corrected as conditions changed; and Moscow, not Kiev, proposes federal solutions for “one country, two nations”. In short, no successors.

Regionalization? Yes. Islam and Latin America-Caribbean, as OIC-Organization of Islamic Cooperation and CELAC-Comunidad de Estados Latinoamericanos y Caribeños, slowly; EU struggling. African Unity suffered a major setback when Gaddafi was eliminated; but the Union is there even if under strong Anglo-American influence, e.g., to rout Al-Shabah. They have tried that before; maybe dialogue would be better than bombing?

Globalization? No. Fight between two economic blocs; USA-EU to keep the dollar as global currency, BRICS-Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa for several alternatives.

US Blossoming? None; the bottom 20, 70 or even 99% have too little or no increase in buying power, hence too low domestic demand.

US Fascism? Yes, indeed; if by fascism we mean use of massive violence for political goals. US fascism takes three forms: global with bombing, droning and sniping all over; domestic with military weapons used across race and class faultlines; and then NSA-National Security Agency spying on everybody.

A deeply tragic development. Such an innovative country and nothing better to offer than macro bombing, meso droning and micro sniping. We sense the military-industrial complex at work–the bomb industry upfront–but dubious intellectuals are also in it:

“Even as Mr. Obama presses Russia to stop fomenting a virtual civil war in Ukraine, he is trying to collaborate with Moscow in a diplomatic campaign to force Iran to scale back its nuclear program. Even as he pressures Iran over its nuclear program, he finds himself on the same side as Tehran in combating a rising Sunni insurgency in Iraq. Even as he sends special forces to help squelch those insurgents, he is trying to help their putative allies against the government in Syria next door.–While defending Israel’s right to defend itself against Hamas rockets, he sent Secretary of State John Kerry to work with Egypt to force a ceasefire–the same Egypt to which Mr. Obama cut financial aid for a while because it came to power after the military overthrew the previous government” (Peter Baker, “Crises cascade and converge, putting Obama to test”, INYT, 24 July 2014).

Good job, Mr. Baker. The answer by a former security aide to Obama, Gary Samore, from an autistic bubble, is less brilliant:

“You name it, the world is aflame. Foreign policy is always complicated. We always have a mix of complicated interests. That’s not unusual. What’s unusual is there’s this outbreak of violence and instability everywhere. It makes it hard for governments to cope–”.

Mr. Samore: all Made in the USA, a USA meeting itself in the door.

Washington wanted Ukraine into NATO to encircle Russia even more; USA-UK made the coup against democratically elected Mossadegh in Iran in 1953 ushering in 25 years of a brutal Shah dictatorship; the brutal IS-Islamic State is a highly predictable outcome of the US invasion of Iraq in 2003 killing the Baath-Saddam alternative; the Syrian situation was always more complex than Assad against an opposition and much due to Israeli influence on US policy; Israeli bombing in Gaza up to genocide is partially of US making; the Muslim Brotherhood came into power to get Egypt out of the US-Israeli grip; the Egyptian military is bribed by the USA itself and both want it that way, dictatorship or not.

There are other factors, but the common denominator is us, US.

Change that policy and the world would be easier to cope with.

But, the problem is whether Washington is too autistic to think thoughts beyond its bombing-droning-sniping obsession.

The Guardian, 9 July 2014: “Pentagon preparing for mass civil breakdown. Social science is being militarized to develop social tools to target peaceful activists and protest movements.” The US military is turning inward, obviously to protect the white 1% who feeds them.

Furthermore, of course (28 August, Internet), the shocking, not exactly surprising, news: “Israel Police train U.S. police officers and have exchange offices in New York <> Tel Aviv–US police forces train in Israel and learn from how Palestinian resistance is subdued”.

And that is by the same military means that brought the two countries into being. The more militarized the more dehumanized and the more dehumanized the more lethal; fed psychologically by anti-Arab and anti-Black racism, and by exceptionalist claims from the ruling elites.

Militarized class and race war is the worst approach possible. What the USA needs is imitative, solidarity, cooperation for a better USA; they will reap fear, apathy, withdrawal, revenge, spiraling violence. Already hurting the US image abroad and far from halting the decline and fall of the US Empire, it will speed up the decline and fall of the USA itself. Will they trigger a world war as a cover-up?

Moreover, it comes on top of another sad phenomenon in the USA: the increasing collective shootings all over the country, geographically and socially, in addition to the usual homicides and suicides, bad enough. The standard analysis is to psychiatrize the murderer, searching for a profile and its likes in society to prevent more shootings.

Another approach would focus on the shootings as a collective, slow suicide of a US incapable of solving its countless problems, even addressing them, to the point that people simply give a damn, kill what they see as the problem including, often, themselves. General demoralization has such consequences, like the suicide epidemic at the end of the Austrian-Hungarian empire and beyond, lasting to our days.

Farewell, USA? Not at all. Pull yourself together, Stop It!

________________________________

Johan Galtung, a professor of peace studies, dr hc mult, is rector of the TRANSCEND Peace University-TPU. He is author of over 150 books on peace and related issues, including ‘50 Years-100 Peace and Conflict Perspectives,’ published by the TRANSCEND University Press-TUP.

Moving Beyond Militarism

An excellent report (click for PDF):

Laura Lynch's photo.

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