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A View From the Other 96%

Exposing Lies of Empire by Andre Vltchek is an 800-page tour of the world between 2012 and 2015 without a Western tour guide. It ought to make you spitting-mad furious, then grateful for the enlightenment, and then ready to get to work.

The 4% of us humans who have grown up in the United States are taught that our government means well and does good. As we begin to grasp that this isn't always so, we're duly admonished that all governments do evil -- as if we were being simplistic and self-centered to blame Washington for too much.

But take this tour of the world with out nationless friend Andre. We see U.S. medical troops operating on Haitian civilians in the most unsafe conditions, while proper facilities nearby sit unused; these troops are practicing for battlefield surgeries. We see millions slaughtered in the Democratic Republic of the Congo at U.S. instigation and with U.S. support. We see U.S. militarism inflicting immeasurable suffering in Somalia. We witness the U.S. training and arming in Turkey of troops from around the Middle East to be sent into Syria to attempt to overthrow another government. We follow the horrors that U.S.-driven militarism, capitalism, and racism have brought to Indonesia, as well as Colombia, the Philippines, and locations around the globe. We investigate the ongoing state of disaster in Iraq and Libya, even the everlasting crisis created by the long-forgotten U.S. war on Panama, and for that matter the ongoing injustice of the century-old German genocide in today's Namibia. We meet the people of occupied Okinawa, and the people of the rest of Asia who view theirs as an evil island hosting threatening U.S. troops. We examine the crushing of popular movements in Egypt, the corruption of four "anchor nations" in four U.S.-created regions of Africa, and the imposition of violent coups in Central America and Ukraine.

Tomgram: Alfred McCoy. Washington's Great Game and Why It's Failing

 It might have been the most influential single sentence of that era: “In these circumstances it is clear that the main element of any United States policy toward the Soviet Union must be that of long-term, patient but firm and vigilant containment of Russian expansive tendencies.” And it originated in an 8,000 word telegram — yes, in those days, unbelievably enough, there was no email, no Internet, no Snapchat, no Facebook — sent back to Washington in February 1946 by 

Focus: Trans-Pacific Partnership -June 8, 2015


Rand Paul Demands White House Release Trade Deal Text Immediately, ‘We Should Read Legislation Before We Vote on It’ - TheHill


Carly Fiorina To Obama: ‘Devil Is In The Details,’ Release Obamatrade Text Now - Breitbart


Senator Jeff Sessions's Letter to Obama: Why Are You Keeping Obamatrade’s New Global Governance Secret? - Breitbart


AFL-CIO Protesters Demand To See The Text Of The Trans-Pacific Partnership, Rebuffed By Obama Administration, Police - IBTimes


VIDEO: Working Families Ask to Read Text of TPP; Trade Rep. Locks the Door - AFL-CIO


Huckabee: Most Members Of Congress Who Support Obamatrade Haven’t Read It - Breitbart


Two Members of Boehner's Leadership Team Openly Refuse to Admit if They've Read Obamatrade - Breitbart


Rubio, Graham Refuse to Answer Whether They Read Obamatrade Before Voting on It - Breitbart


Dem: Tech knows more about trade deal than Congress does - TheHill


Food, Water, Health, Life: UN Experts Warn of Threats Posed by Secret Trade Deals - sandiegofreepress.org


MoveOn Petitions: Stop the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), urge Congress to vote no on fast track legislation. TPP should be negotiated in the full light of day - MoveOn


WikiLeaks offers $100,000 bounty for the secret chapters of Obama's landmark Pacific trade deal - Business Insider


Statement: WikiLeaks issues call for $100,000 bounty on monster trade treaty (VIDEO) - wikileaks.org


VIDEO (and transcript): Interview with Julian Assange on the Trans-Pacific Partnership: Secretive Deal Isn’t About Trade, But Corporate Control - democracynow.org


Wikileaks Drops Another Damning Trove Of Secret Trade Deal Documents, 17 Documents From Negotiations on TISA (Trade In Services Agreement) - huffingtonpost.com


A review of the the e-commerce annex of TISA (Trade In Services Agreement) - The Register

 

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Uncertainty Persists on Trade Vote in US House of Representatives - VOA


Left raises pressure on Pelosi to oppose Obama's fast-track - TheHill


Pelosi: 'Not my responsibility' to find votes for Obama trade bill - TheHill


Connecticut liberal battles Obama on trade, In the House Rosa DeLauro has become the de facto leader of Democratic opposition - POLITICO


POLL: Majority of Americans oppose Obama fast-track to negotiate trade deals that Congress can approve or reject but not amend - Breitbart


We The People: 2 Million Petitions Delivered To Congress to Stop TPP - Breitbart


Groups Hold National Day of Action to Oppose "Fast Tracking" of TPP - Feminist Wire Daily


Group with Boehner Ties Launches $900K Campaign for ObamaTrade - Breitbart


The Terms of Trade: Questions and Answers on the President's Trade Deal - The White House


Obama: China 'Put Out Feelers' on Joining TPP - VOA


Elizabeth Warren's report details Obama's broken promises: "The United States does not enforce the labor protections in its trade agreements" - huffingtonpost.com


REPORT (Full): Broken Promises: Decades of Failure to Enforce Labor Standards in Free Trade Agreements - huffingtonpost.com


Malaysian graves in people-smuggling camps add to Obama's trade pact headache in Congress - The Star Online


Unraveling the Export Argument for Pacific Trade Deal - WSJ


How Could the Trans-Pacific Partnership Impact Manufacturing? - cerasis.com


This Small Town Shows Why The Trans-Pacific Partnership Could Be A Disaster For American Workers - Working In These Times


The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Ocean - Peter Neill


Leader Pelosi Should Stand for Internet Users and Come Out Against the TPP Fast Track Bill - Electronic Frontier Foundation

 

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Will Americans Vote for a Democratic Socialist?

The recent announcement by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, an avowed “democratic socialist,” that he is running for the Democratic nomination for President raises the question of whether Americans will vote for a candidate with that political orientation.

Will Allies Fold Again on Ukraine

Will “Junior Partners” Act Like Adults at G-7?

By Ray McGovern

 

President Barack Obama arrives in Germany Sunday to meet with the leaders of Germany, France, Italy, the UK, Japan, and Canada for the “G-7 summit” at a resort in Bavaria.

 

This particular genre of summit was formerly known as the “G-8.”  But that was before the U.S. succeeded in blaming Russia for the violent aftermath of the U.S./EU sponsored coup d’état in Kiev on Feb. 22, 2014, and managed to get Russia disinvited last year.

 

Stakes Higher Than Usual

 

We shall have to wait until the two-day gathering in Bavaria is over to gauge the results.  But the stakes are high and – for once – it is conceivable that the U.S. will suffer a significant setback in its continuing, if increasingly quixotic, effort to exploit recent violence in Ukraine to isolate Russia.

 

It approves the spy program and makes it permanent: USA Freedom Act is Anything But

By Alfredo Lopez


To get to the point: there is nothing -- nothing at all -- in any recent law or legislative action that will in any way weaken the police state structure our government has put into place for rapid deployment. You are not any more free than you were last week and, no matter what the Congress has done with the expired provisions of the Patriot Act or the newly developed and Orwellian-named "USA Freedom Act", you are not going to be any more free next week.

Turkey/Syria News - June 6, 2015


Parliamentary elections high stakes for Turkey...and Erdogan - Yahoo News


POLL: AKP expected to win 41% of the votes, CHP 27.8%, MHP 14.8% and HDP 12.6% - bianet.org


Pro-Kurdish HDP party may tip balance in Turkey polls - Yahoo News


Two dead, over 100 injured after explosions at milestone rally of Turkey's Kurdish party - hurriyetdailynews.com


VIDEO: Two dead, over 100 injured after explosions at milestone rally of Turkey's Kurdish party - LiveLeak.com


Gay, Christian, minority election candidates show Turkey's changing face, the most diverse list comes from the Kurdish party - Yahoo News


VIDEO: Kurds, women, gays put faith in upstart Turkish party - BBC News


Meet The Transgender Woman Who Wants To Represent Turkey's LGBT Community This Election - .huffingtonpost.com


Turkish elections: Turkey's Kurd-hating Grey Wolves spreading neo-nazi poison across Europe — www.ibtimes.co.uk


Turkey′s election system the ′most unfair′ in the world - DW.DE


Analysis: Is Turkey’s election campaigning fair and balanced? - middleeasteye.net


Erdogan: "There is a trash called The New York Times in the US" - The Counter Jihad Report


VIDEO (Turkish): Erdogan slams New York Times -- again - rudaw.net


New York Times responds to Erdoğan with Twitter riddle: "Which leader has a 1,150-room palace more than 30x the size of the White House?" - todayszaman.com


Turkey lavish presidential palace nicknamed ‘illegal’ because built on a recreational farming area, Worker tells of lengthy security checks - todayszaman.com


Nervous Turkish markets await knife-edge election outcome - Yahoo Maktoob News


Why Investors Are Calling This the Most Important Turkish Election in Forever - Bloomberg Business


Erdogan Setback Seen Benefiting Turkish Companies Like Koza Gold - Bloomberg Business

 

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Report: Turkey’s MIT spy agency transported ISIL fighters to Syria, facilitating the jihadist group's defeat of the FSA - todayszaman.com


Violent confrontation between gendarmes and MIT intel operatives who were transporting illegal arms to Syria jihadists - todayszaman.com


VIDEO: Violent confrontation between gendarmes and MIT intel operatives who were transporting illegal arms to Syria jihadists - LiveLeak.com


VIDEO: Video showing weapons carried by MIT intel operatives to Syria jihadists - YouTube


CHP Hatay official: Transfer of arms to Syrian jihadists continues, weapons loaded here and sent to the other side of the border - todayszaman.com


Syrian Turkmens challenge claims that MIT weapons were destined for their community, say received no aid from Ankara - todayszaman.com


HSYK allows prosecution of prosecutors, military commanders who stopped MIT trucks carrying weapons to Syria - todayszaman.com


Erdoğan seeks aggravated life sentence for Cumhuriyet editor-in-chief for publishing video of MIT arms transferred to Syria - todayszaman.com


VIDEO (English Subs): Erdoğan vows to punish journalist behind Syria trucks video: He will pay a heavy price - todayszaman.com


Cumhuriyet journalists challenge Erdoğan's threats - Cihan News


400 intellectuals show support for daily Cumhuriyet, journalist - hurriyetdailynews.com


Journalist Baransu faces 52 years in jail for coverage of MGK report - todayszaman.com


Journalist Mumcu faces 5 years in jail for insulting Erdoğan - todayszaman.com


US spokesperson expresses ‘concern’ on press freedom in Turkey, Along with journalists, Armenians and gays Erdoğan has also singled out the New York Times, CNN and the BBC - hurriyetdailynews.com


VIDEO: US spokesperson Marie Harf expresses ‘concern’ on press freedom in Turkey - YouTube


Committee to Protect Journalists: “We call on [Erdogan] to stop bullying journalists and news outlets just because he doesn't like what they report" - Committee to Protect Journalists


Amnesty International official: Human rights situation in Turkey could not be worse - todayszaman.com


Human rights Watch and International Press Institute react against the series of attacks by Erdoğan and his supporters against media critical of the government - todayszaman.com


Ankara denies 'Saudi-backed Turkish spies in Yemen' allegations - Anadolu Agency


The Turkey-Qatar Military Cooperation Agreement, What are Turkish troops going to do in Qatar? - Al-Monitor


Towards-a-Turkish-Saudi-alliance - Al-Ahram Weekly

 

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Tomgram: Nick Turse, My Very Own Veteran's Day

 [For TomDispatch Readers: As you read Nick Turse’s latest striking report from the front lines of chaos in Africa, don’t forget that, in return for a $100 contribution to this site, you can ge

Film: Costa Rica Abolished its Military, Never Regretted it

The forthcoming film, A Bold Peace: Costa Rica's Path of Demilitarization, should be given every possible means of support and promotion. After all, it documents the blatant violation of laws of physics, human nature, and economics, as understood in the United States -- and the violators seem positively gleeful about it.

In 1948 Costa Rica abolished its military, something widely deemed impossible in the United States. This film documents how that was done and what the results have been. I don't want to give away the ending but let me just say this: there has not been a hostile Muslim takeover of Costa Rica, the Costa Rican economy has not collapsed, and Costa Rican women still seem to find a certain attraction in Costa Rican men.

How is this possible? Wait, it gets stranger.

Focus: Hillary Clinton - June 4, 2015


Clinton foundation's Sweden fundraising arm cashed in as Stockholm lobbied Hillary on Iran sanctions - Washington Times


VIDEO: Hillary Clinton Involved in 'Quid Quo Pro' Deal with Swedish Telecom - YouTube


Revealed: Clintons Bagged $3.4 Million for 18 Speeches Funded by Keystone Pipeline Banks - Breitbart


Banks Behind Hillary Clinton's Canadian Speeches Really Want The Keystone Pipeline - huffingtonpost.com


CHART: Timeline Shows How Clintons Took $1.8 Million from Keystone Pipeline Investors - GAI


VIDEO ARCHIVE: Bill Clinton: 'We should embrace' Keystone pipeline - YouTube


As FIFA allegations swirled, Clintons gave Qatar a stage — and legitimacy - The Washington Post


VIDEO ARCHIVE: Clinton Global Initiative hosts Qatar officials in 2013 - Washington Post


FBI Investigates Russia And Qatar World Cups - Sky News


The FIFA-Clinton method, both organizations serve as portals through which shadowy people find their way, for a given price, into the light - WSJ


Hillary Clinton's State Department Increased Chemical Arms Sales To Middle East Countries That Gave To Clinton Foundation - ibtimes.com


The Clinton Foundation Took Money from Saudi Propagandists - National Review Online


Bill Clinton’s Wall Street cash puts wife in an ethical spot - The Sun Herald


Bill Clinton Is the keynote speaker for the health insurance lobby bash, AHIP played the primary role in killing the public health insurance option and trying to sink the Affordable Care Act - Alternet


How Bill Clinton duped State Dept. ethics cops, he set up Teneo as an intermediary that would get him corporate and foreign clients - WND


Clinton Foundation Has Not Yet Released Names of 1,076 Secret Foreign Donors - Breitbart


The inside story of how the Clintons built a $2 billion global empire - The Washington Post


How the Clinton Foundation is organized - Washington Post

 

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Federal officials voiced growing alarm over Clinton’s compliance with records laws, documents show - Fox News


At a hearing on government transparency Democratic lawmakers defend former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton - POLITICO.com


Acting IGs at State Dept., National Archives ignored looming Clinton email scandal - WashingtonExaminer.com


House GOP moves to punish State Dept. over Benghazi delays, plans to cut $700m from the agency - The Boston Globe


POLL: In two new polls Hillary’s numbers dip with an harsh voter assessment of her personality – particularly her trustworthiness, Benghazi rises as an issue - The Fiscal Times


House Committee Told Of Hillary Email Whistleblower - The Daily Caller


Hillary’s top aide with terror ties saw all emails, Abedin’s alleged personal and family ties to the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic supremacists - WND


Hillary Clinton Jokes on White House Computer Hacking: Wouldn't Have Happened on 'My Server' - newsmax.com

 

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‘Impartial’ DNC finance chief helps Hillary Clinton, fundrasing assistance flouts presidential primary neutrality rules - POLITICO


Hillary Clinton 2016: Secret effort to sell her to rich liberals, Campaign targets unenthusiastic donors on the party’s left - POLITICO


Text of the Secret Memo Showing Clinton Campaign Worried About Donor Unease - POLITICO


Campaign Reporters Told There Will Be ‘NO Opportunities To Interview Hillary Clinton’ - The Daily Caller


Fresh Off Clinton Foundation Africa Trip, Jay Jacobs Holds Hillary Clinton Fundraiser - Washington Free Beacon


Hillary Clinton's "Grassroots Campaign" Sets $1,000 Minimum for a "Conversation" - The Intercept


Hillary Clinton's rally in N.Y. forces out children's event, jeopardizes blood drive - Washington Times


Hillary allows men at 'women-only' event amid weak turnout - New York Post

 

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Here come the terrorists!: Help! The USA PATRIOT ACT has expired!

By Dave Lindorff

 

Omigod! We're all gonna die!

Three provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act were allowed to expire on June 1 thanks to a Senate disagreement over how to "fix" them (and thanks to Sen. Rand Paul's outspoken opposition to renewal), and now we’re vulnerable to terrorism!

That at least is what President Obama and other fear mongers in Washington are saying.

Tomgram: Engelhardt, Going For Broke in Ponzi Scheme America

[Note to TomDispatch Readers: I’ve long had a weakness for commencement addresses, or at least for what they might be rather than what they usually are, which is why, I suppose, I’ve written them relatively regularly myself.

Talk Nation Radio: James Bradley on pre-WWII China Lobby that fooled U.S. public

https://soundcloud.com/davidcnswanson/talk-nation-radio-james-bradley-on-pre-wwii-china-lobby-that-fooled-us-public/

James Bradley's new book is The China Mirage: The Hidden History of American Disaster in Asia. He describes the China Lobby that convinced the U.S. public in the years prior to WWII that the U.S. could cut off oil to Japan without any blow back.

Total run time: 29:00

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

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Syndicated by Pacifica Network.

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Focus: USA Freedom Act - June 2, 2015


Pro-NSA senators aim to weaken USA Freedom Act's privacy protections (texts of the amendements) - dailydot.com


The Senate’s proposed changes to the surveillance reform bill are running into resistance in the House - POLITICO


Goodlatte, Conyers, Sensenbrenner, Nadler: Senate Must Pass USA Freedom Act without Amendment - Judiciary Committee


Rand Paul Won’t Get Amendments on NSA Reform Bill—But Mitch McConnell Will - NationalJournal.com


Paul wants eight amendments to spy law legislation - WashingtonExaminer.com


Key Senate Republican to oppose NSA amendments - TheHill


Fears NSA will seek to undermine surveillance reform - The Guardian


POLL: A plurality of 42 percent believe NSA provisions to collect metadata should be extended with some modifications - POLITICO


White House urges Senate to approve NSA reform bill - TheHill


VIDEO: Obama Weekly Address on the USA Freedom Act - YouTube


VIDEO: Why Bernie Sanders will vote against the USA Freedom Act - Yahoo Yahoo Eurosport UK


Senators Should Oppose Senator McConnell’s Amendments and Pass a Clean Version of the USA FREEDOM Act - newamerica.org


A guide through Senate amendments to the USA FREEDOM Act - R Street Institute


Oppose Amendments to Weaken & Delay USA Freedom Act - Center for Democracy & Technology


ACLU: NSA reform bill doesn't go far enough - usatoday.com


NSA Reform Vote a Win for Tech & Internet Companies - DC Inno


ITI Calls on senators to pass the USA Freedom Act’s surveillance reforms and eschew any harmful amendments - Information Technology Industry Council


Letter of privacy and advocacy groups supporting the USA Freedom Act: it is not as protective of civil liberties as we would prefer, but significantly improve the status quo - cloudfront.net


ALA draws line in sand on USA FREEDOM amendments - District Dispatch


USA Freedom 3.0 - Steps Forward and Missed Opportunities - FreedomWorks


Text of The USA Freedom Act (H.R. 2048) - congress.gov


Don’t Worry, the Government Still Has Plenty of Surveillance Power Without Section 215 - Electronic Frontier Foundation


Forget the Patriot Act – Here Are the Privacy Violations You Should Be Worried About - Foreign Policy


Information sharing is taking back seat to NSA reform - WashingtonExaminer.com


Surveillance reform could tee up cyber bill - TheHill


Charges against Edward Snowden stand, despite telephone surveillance ban - The Guardian

 

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Appeals Court Rules Keystone XL South Approval Was Legal, Lifting Cloud Over TransCanada

Cross-Posted from DeSmogBlog

In a 3-0 vote, the U.S. Appeals Court for the Tenth Circuit has ruled that the southern leg of TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline was permitted in a lawful manner by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. 

Keystone XL South was approved via a controversial Army Corps Nationwide Permit 12 and an accompanying March 2012 Executive Order from President Barack Obama. The pipeline, open for business since January 2014, will now carry tar sands crude from Cushing, Oklahoma to Port Arthur, Texas without the cloud of the legal challenge hanging over its head since 2012.

It’s not just police killings: Tazing and Bust of Videotaper Shows Abuse of Blacks is Just Normal Philly Cop Behavior

By Linn Washington Jr.


A July 2013 Philadelphia police attack on Sharif Anderson, where officers beat, kicked and shot Anderson twice with a Taser, is more than just another ugly incident of abuse by a big city police force long assailed for its persistent brutality and corruption.

Barbara Myers: The Unknown Whistleblower

 

Barbara Myers: The Unknown Whistleblower

 

Focus: Hillary Clinton - May 30, 2015


An award for Bill Clinton came with $500,000 for his foundation, at a fundraising gala thrown by the charity Happy Hearts Fund - NYTimes.com


VIDEO: Address of President Clinton at the Happy Hearts Fund Gala - Vimeo


Clinton Foundation's $500,000 Bill to Small Charity for Big Donation - NYTimes.com


Letter of the model inviting Bill Clinton to Happy Hearts Fund gala - NYTimes.com


ARCHIVE: Haitians protest Happy Hearts award to Clinton: "where is the money for reconstruction...in whose pockets?" - Haiti Liberte


ARCHIVE: Haitian call attention to Martelly’s corruption and Clinton’s responsibility for bungled international relief effort - Haiti Liberte


ARCHIVE: NY Happy Hearts award gala mocks Haitian misery - Socialist Action


PHOTOS ARCHIVE: Models allure at the Happy Hearts Fund gala - The FMD


ARCHIVE: Petra Nemcova oozes glamour in sheer ruby red dress at Happy Hearts Gala with a diamond encrusted necklace and bracelet - Daily Mail


Clinton Foundation donors included FIFA, Qatar host committee - The Washington Post


Clinton Foundation, FIFA, & Qatar’s Hosting of the 2022 World Cup, Qatar’s track record on labor rights has long been known to be staggeringly horrendous - Nonprofit Quarterly


State Department spending followed foreign Clinton Foundation donors - WashingtonExaminer.com


Clinton Foundation hit with racketeering lawsuit, including a legal request to have the judge seize Hillary's private server - WashingtonExaminer.com


Judge sets trial for racketeering claims against Clintons, 2-week period set aside in Florida courtroom starting Jan. 25 - WND


Text of the racketeering lawsuit filed by Larry Klayman of Freedom Watch against Hillary Clinton - freedomwatchusa.org


Legal Expert On Whether Donations to Clinton Foundation Are Bribes: If It 'Quacks Like a Duck, Chances Are It Is a Duck' - Breitbart


Teflon Tony Rodham, the Clintons’ Shady Id - National Review Online


In a Letter to the Donors Bill Clinton Comes Out in Force to Defend His Foundation - TIME


Text of Bill Clinton’s Letter to the Foundation Donors - The Weekly Standard

 

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John Kerry sued over Clinton emails; 'coverup' alleged - Washington Times


Judicial Watch Files Lawsuit against Secretary of State John Kerry to Force Action on Clinton Emails - Judicial Watch


Judge rejects State Dept. plan for Hillary Clinton emails, sets timetable for release - Washington Times


Emails show Clinton’s interest in arming Libyan rebels despite prohibitions - Fox News


Hillary’s War: Remembering Libya Military Venture - The Daily Caller


Hillary emails challenge her Benghazi alibi, she was briefed on diplomatic mission and used her server to correspond location of Stevens - WND


Clinton Foundation paid Sidney Blumenthal $10,000 per month while he advised secretary of state Hillary on Libya - POLITICO


VIDEO: State Dept: Revelation Clinton Foundation Paid Blumenthal as He Advised Hillary Not a Problem - Washington Free Beacon


VIDEO: Schweizer: If Blumenthal's Clinton Work Isn't A Conflict of Interest, I Don't Know What Is - Breitbart


Richard Trumka, AFL-CIO chief, warns Hillary Clinton on trade deal, says she may not get endorsement - Washington Times


VIDEO: AFL-CIO's Trumka: Hillary Clinton Must Take Position on Trade, Possible We Won't Endorse in 2016 - YouTube


Bernie Sanders Attacks Hillary Clinton Directly on Trade Deal - NYTimes.com


Warren undecided on who she'll back in 2016 race - Boston Herald


POLL: Few People Trust Hillary Clinton - Washington Free Beacon


As senator, Hillary Clinton sought an average of $226 billion in annual spending and backed so few cuts that her spend-to-cut ratio was $892-$1: Taxpayers Union  - Washington Examiner


Stephanie Hannon: Hillary Clinton's Chief Technology Officer - Fortune


Hillary Clinton Pantsuits Cost $1400 - Fortune

 

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Where Would Jesus Live?

If Jesus lived in Galilee in recent decades he would live in a world alive with Palestinian traditions clinging to a long-rooted history but struggling through the aftermath of the never-ended ethnic-cleansing operation that spiked in 1948.

Hatim Kanaaneh has written a fictionalized account, Chief Complaint: A Country Doctor's Tale of Life in Galilee, based on his experiences as a village doctor during the past half-century, a doctor who traveled to the United States for his education and returned to Palestine to practice his craft. His dialogue-heavy stories reach back to before 1948, merging folklore with myth and legend, featuring in the opening vignette a larger-than-life comedic but sensitive giant as short on wits as he is strong of muscle and heart.

Often in this wonderfully entertaining book a straightforward account will quickly become a rumor, a legend, an event infused with more meaning than might have been expected. After learning, for example, that multi-level homes are a sign of wealth, and that the top level is the most prestigious, we read that in one case a steep hill made it easiest to enter one home from the top floor. "That is why Isa housed his two oxen and his donkey in the 'alali -- the penthouse -- for the first winter after it was built. . . . And, that dear reader, is how it came to be rumored in these parts that Isa had sworn a pact of brotherhood and equality with his work animals and accorded them the level of reverence reserved for the head of a family. 'If only our cousins, the Jews, would treat us that humanely!' neighbors would joke."

Chief Complaint is a bit like the accounts of the British veterinarian's tales in All Creatures Great and Small. One doctor treats non-human animals, the other human, but both treat families. A great number of Kanaaneh's patients require placebos and other psychological rather than medical assistance. Gradually one begins to gather that the lot of them, who form a tight community, are to various degrees traumatized. They are in love with land, with the agriculture of that land, with the history of that land. And the land has been stolen, is being stolen, and is being desecrated. This is a more intimate portrait of people than one would be likely to gain on a trip to Palestine/Israel, and the unifying theme at the bottom of their ailments seems to be land loss. A character is describing a wedding of the past:

"Groups of men and women from all the other clans in the village would arrive every night, singing on their way over just after sundown and with many bagfuls of coffee beans, rice, sugar, and bulgur wheat as presents. Or they would have a boy dragging a lamb or a goat ahead of them. And the women would bring bundles of wood on their heads for the fire, which was lit up every night and around which the group dance and songfest were held. There is nothing like it today; since Israel occupied the Galilee, people bear only ill will and jealousy toward each other."

The narrator asks his father to sell beloved land in order to send him to the U.S. for medical school. His father throws a shoe at him. He picks up the shoe and returns it. It is thrown again. He repeats this until his sister speaks to his father who finally laughs and agrees, hopelessly, despairingly perhaps, but understanding the need to proceed.

People have been modernized out of their land, overwhelmed by Western military technology and organization. But those people are more than catching up in the area of communication — assuming that is that anyone in the West still reads.

##

Disclaimer: The author does work for the publisher of this book, but that work does not include book reviews.

Revealed: Energy Transfer Partners’ 'Pipeline-for-Prostitute' Landman

Cross-Posted from DeSmogBlog

By Steve Horn and David Goodner

A DeSmog investigation has uncovered the identity of a land agent and the contract company he works with that allegedly offered to buy an Iowa farmer the services of two teenage sex workers in exchange for access to his land to build the controversial proposed Dakota Access pipeline, owned by Energy Transfer Partners.

Urging a 'Surge' Against Insurgents -- Again

Resurgence of the 'Surge' Myth

Editor Note: Official Washington loves the story – the Iraq War was failing until President George W. Bush bravely ordered a “surge” in 2007 that won the war, but President Obama squandered the victory, requiring a new “surge” now. Except the narrative is dangerous make-believe.

By Ray McGovern

As American politicians and editorial writers resume their tough talk about sending more U.S. troops into Iraq, they are resurrecting the “successful surge” myth, the claim that President George W. Bush’s dispatch of 30,000 more soldiers in 2007 somehow “won” the war – a storyline that is beloved by the neocons because it somewhat lets them off the hook for starting the disaster in the first place.

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