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Critical Health Issues in Gaza - by Stephen Lendman
Since locked down and isolated by Israel, Gaza's experienced systemic crisis. Its health system especially was gravely harmed.
Many services and life-saving treatments aren't available. Accessing it elsewhere is uncertain and tenuous. Treating chronic illnesses is jeopardized by inadequate medicines and proper equipment.
Human Rights Day - by Stephen Lendman
A commonly accepted definition calls human rights basic freedoms "to which all humans are entitled, often held to include the right to life and liberty, freedom of thought and expression, and equality before the law."
The UN said "(o)n Human Rights Day 2011, we pay tribute to all human rights defenders and ask you to get involved in the global human rights movement."
Denying Palestinians Fair Access to Water - by Stephen Lendman
Water is essential to life. Denying it is criminal.
Water and sanitation are recognized as indispensable human rights. In July 2010, the General Assembly's Resolution 64/292 affirmed it. It called on member states and international organizations to:
Russia Bashing - by Stephen Lendman
On December 4, parliamentary elections were held to fill 450 State Duma seats, Russia's Federal Assembly lower house.
With nearly all votes counted, RIA Novosti said Medvedev/Putin's United Russia party won 238 seats, falling slightly below a majority with 49.67% of the vote.
New Report on Israel Restricting Free Expression and Assembly - by Stephen Lendman
The Association for Civil Rights in Israel assesses Israel's human and civil rights record annually. Its newly released 2011 report cites increasing crackdowns on basic freedoms. More on it below.
Losing free expression and assembly rights threatens others. They're basic ones Israel's High Court affirmed.
Fascism in America - by Stephen Lendman
In 1932, Mussolini declared the 20th century a "Fascist century," saying:
"It is to be expected that this century may be that of authority, a century of the "Right," a Fascist century." He claimed it would "sav(e) Western civilization." For what he didn't explain.
Israeli-Style Justice - by Stephen Lendman
Accused Israelis face charges in civil courts. Military tribunals try Palestinians. Virtually everyone is guilty by accusation. A new study says so. More on that below.
CELAC: A Washington-Controlled OAS Alternative - by Stephen Lendman
On February 23, 2010, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States was established at the Rio Group-Caribbean Community Unity Summit in Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico.
CELAC comprises 33 regional countries. America and Canada are excluded. In July 2010, Venezuela's Hugo Chavez and Chile's Sebastian Pinera were chosen co-chairs to help draft organizational statutes.
America's Weak Jobs Report - by Stephen Lendman
ABC News quoted an unnamed White House spokesperson, saying the November jobs report provides "further evidence that the economy is continuing to heal."
Obama's Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Alan Krueger hyped the 0.4% unemployment rate drop to 8.6%, "the lowest (figure) since March 2009." He didn't explain why. More on that below, including the real unreported employment rate.
Bailouts, Bondage and Political Bankruptcy - by Stephen Lendman
Europe and America perhaps face their gravest ever economic crisis. Growing millions are impoverished, unemployed, and out of luck.
Hunger and homelessness are increasing. So is unaddressed anger over handouts to bankers, not people facing crushing hardships.
America Lurches Toward Full-Blown Tyranny - by Stephen Lendman
Post-9/11, America's moved steadily toward eroding democracy entirely. Justification given is war on terror hokum. Incrementally, international, constitutional and statute laws have been trashed.
Equity, justice and other democratic values long ago were abandoned to advance America's imperium. On May 26, the House voted to abolish freedom entirely - HR 1540, 322 - 96.
Central Bank Intervention: Much Ado About Nothing - by Stephen Lendman
On November 30, the Fed, ECB, Bank of England, Bank of Japan, Bank of Canada and Swiss National Bank acted together to cut the rate on dollar liquidity swap arrangements by 50 basis points. Markets surged. Irrationally trumped reason.
What, in fact, was accomplished? Swap lines were always available. From 2007 - 2009, they were initiated or expanded globally four times.
US/Pakistan’s Toxic Alliance - by Stephen Lendman
Partnering with America has a price. Pakistan's paid dearly. Post-9/11, it's been harmed economically, politically, and strategically. Has its military now had enough and want out? More on that below.
At issue is the latest November 26 incident involving NATO forces killing 24 Pakistani soldiers and injuring 13 others in two remote posts along Afghanistan's border.
America's Illegal Chemical Weapons Stockpile - by Stephen Lendman
On November 28, the Conference of the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) opened its 16th session in The Hague, Netherlands.
Information on it can be found on the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) web site.
International Solidarity Day with Palestine - by Stephen Lendman
Established by the UN in 1977, International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People is observed on or around November 29.
The date commemorates November 29, 1947, the date UN Resolution 181 was adopted, despite Palestinian opposition.
At Risk Eurozone Sovereign Credit Ratings - by Stephen Lendman
Moody's says Eurozone crisis conditions place all member state credit ratings at risk.
It warned 87 European banks to expect downgrades. Moreover, Fitch revised America's debt outlook to negative. Nonetheless, its AAA rating is unchanged. For how long is another issue.
Illegitimate Egyptian Elections - by Stephen Lendman
Last February, Mubarak's 30-year dictatorship ended. Another one replaced him. Egypt's military holds absolute power.
Authoritarian dominance is unchallenged. Elections are more theater than real. Egypt's multi-round complex process complicates them further. So do logistics. Understanding what to do is daunting.
Palestinian Unity: A Threat, Says Israel - by Stephen Lendman
Palestine is sovereign territory. In 1987, Law Professor Francis Boyle drafted its Declaration of Independence. On November 15, 1988, the Palestine National Council (PNC) adopted it, affirming Palestinian statehood.
Target Syria - by Stephen Lendman
Washington's Greater Middle East project involves waring against the region one country at a time to replace independent regimes with client ones.
Softer targets were attacked first. Tougher ones remain, notably Iran and Syria. Subduing them may involve turning the entire region into an uncontrollable cauldron, not least because China and Russia have interests to defend.
Indefinite Domestic Military Detentions - by Stephen Lendman
Congress is now considering legislative language to mandate indefinite military detentions of US citizens suspected of present or past associations with alleged terrorist groups, with or without evidence to prove it. More on that below.
Israel: Profile of a Rogue State - by Stephen Lendman
Rogue states spurn international law, treaties, conventions, and in Israel's case its own laws and Supreme Court decisions.
Daily examples offer proof, including from Ahmed el-Helah and Mariam Itani's new book titled, "The Suffering of the Palestinian Child under the Israeli Occupation," saying:
Spreading Eurozone Contagion - by Stephen Lendman
The operative word is contagion. It's malignant and spreading because it's unresolved and irresponsibly addressed.
Germany, Europe's strongest economy, just had its worst ever bond auction since 1999. Over a third of 10-year bunds offered were unsold. More on the failure below.
Rage for Change in Egypt - by Stephen Lendman
Last February, Egyptians celebrated Hosni Mubarak's ouster. He became an obstacle to Washington's Middle East agenda and had to go.
For years, State Department and Pentagon officials wanted him out for opposing key US policies, including Iran's nuclear program and Bush's 2003 Iraq war.
US Higher Education in Crisis - by Stephen Lendman
Diogenes called education "the foundation of every state." Education reformer Horace Mann said the "common (public) school (is) the greatest discovery ever made by man."
Education reform under Bush and Obama want public education made another business profit center. Doing so places bottom line priorities above teaching. At issue also is creating a two-tiered system for haves and have-nots, defined by race, ethnicity, social status and family income.
Bipartisan Deal to Slash Medicare and Medicaid - by Stephen Lendman
It's been planned for years. Republicans want them eliminated. Democrats agreed to incremental cuts to make ending core social contract programs look normal. Slashing Social Security comes later.
Coming: Big Austerity Cuts - by Stephen Lendman
The congressional August Budget Control Act of 2011 established the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction - aka Supercommittee.
Doing so was extralegal. The Constitution's Article 1, Section 8 explains congressional powers. None of them include supercommittee authority to resolve America's debt crisis.
Thanksgiving Hypocrisy - by Stephen Lendman
On November 25, 2009, a New York Times editorial headlined, "A Thanksgiving Toast," saying:
"Sitting down with friends and family today, there will be thanks for the steady currents, flowing out of the past, that have brought us to this table....And there will be prayerful thanks for the future."
Heading for War on Syria? - by Stephen Lendman
Libya's model is being replicated in Syria. So far, it's short of war. For how long is uncertain. Expect it if current tactics fail. More on that below.
At issue is regime change, establishing another client state, and isolating Iran ahead of similar tactics there. It's part of America's Middle East project to redraw the region according to US/Israeli geopolitical aims.
Gaza: Good News and Bad - by Stephen Lendman
First the good. On November 22, the International Middle East Media Center (IMEMC) said a "Freedom Spring" convoy arrived through Rafah's border terminal, connecting Gaza and Egypt.
Israeli Settlers Attack Palestinians with Impunity - by Stephen Lendman
Palestinians are doubly cursed. Israel's military attacks them regularly. During the past week alone, Israeli air strikes killed four Gazans, wounding another 14.
Al-Nabi Saleh village residents participating in a peaceful demonstration were assaulted. Two injuries were reported, including a child. Israel's navy arrested three Palestinian fishermen, confiscating their boats.