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By Ken Ferguson
Cupar, Scotland--This county town of Fife, is not exactly a news hot spot. Probably the last big story here was the landing of Italian
balloonist Vincenzo Lunardi nearby in 1785 at the end of a 43-mile flight from
However the small town’s sleepy Sheriff court is about to host a key
legal case involving a US student from New York and two anti Israeli
protestors who have been charged with racism.
For the information of US readers, in Scotland the Sheriff isn’t some John Wayne figure with the star on his chest, but is rather the bewigged judge presiding over the local court.
This case centers on an incident at nearby St. Andrews University, where
two students are facing racially aggravated conduct charges after
allegedly making comments and gestures critical of the State of Israel
and its flag.
Press reports are already in danger of prejudging the case, with
Memorial service will be held May 27, 2011 at 12:00 noon at Central United Methodist Church, Woodward at Adams in Detroit.
"the Detroit City Council mourns and honors Al Fishman, one of our City's finest Peace, Civil and Human Rights, and Labor activists, advocates and champions, one of our true Citizens of the World."
* Detroit City Council Memorial Resolution for Mr. Al
Fishman, Peace and Human Rights Activist
* Kevin Martin, Executive Director, Peace Action
* Pat Fry, National Co-Chair, Committees of Correspondence
for Democracy and Socialism (CCDS)
* Michigan Peace Action Network
* Jack Lessenberry, Michigan Radio (91.7 FM - Ann
Arbor/Detroit; 91.1 FM - Flint; 104.1 FM West Michigan)
Detroit City Council Memorial Resolution for Mr. Al Fishman,
Peace and Human Rights Activist
[Adopted unanimously May 24, to be read at May 27 memorial
WHEREAS, Al Fishman was a leading peace and justice activist
Rupert Murdoch, who got his start in business marketing rats and manure, has chosen to deny Italy access to a television network that has presented critical coverage of both Murdoch and of leading Italian media baron and prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi. The network, Current TV, is the project of a man identified in Italy primarily as a Nobel Peace Prize winner, Al Gore.
By Mumia Abu Jamal
I wonder sometimes if the average American stops, looks at the chaos in the world, and wonders, how did we get here?
Does she simply shrug it off as 'fate', shake the thought away, and go shopping at the mall in thrall to the new?
Does he put it down as a latter-day expression of the biblical proverb, 'there will be wars, and rumors of war', and turn to the latest game on ESPN and mist over the doubt, the fear, the dread?
In the absence of a draft, the imperial wars raging on the periphery are as distant as Mars; battles, bombings, death and dismemberments that can be flicked away as effortlessly as changing the channel.
By Linn Washington, Jr.
Three days after President Barack Obama visited Ground Zero in New York City on May 5th with his message of "justice being done" with the slaying of terrorist Osama bin Laden, disturbing news broke about this administration's blocking of a quest for justice in the infamous May 1970 killing of four Kent State students.
Those four students fell in a barrage of gunfire on May 4, 1970 by Ohio National Guardsmen who opened fire during a peaceful protest against the Vietnam War on Kent State’s campus. That lethal fusillade of 67 shots during a 13-second period also wounded nine others, some seriously.
That blocking action by Obama officials includes an apparent unwillingness to investigate new evidence providing damning insights about that shooting orgy forty years ago, which heightened criticism about U.S. foreign policy in Vietnam and about the abuse of domestic political dissidents.
When a United Airlines pilot of a flight I was on celebrated the killing of Osama bin Laden, and I blogged about it, my friend Emily Levy urged me to complain to the airline. So I did. Here's their response, followed by what I had sent them.
Dear Mr. Swanson:
Thank you for contacting us. We are currently experiencing a high volume of emails, and I offer my apology for the delayed response to your message.
I am very sorry to hear that our pilot vocalized his personal opinion with the passenger’s onboard flight 210 on May 1, 2011. It is definitely a personal opinion on the reaction or outcome of the fact that Osama bin Laden was killed. Please accept my sincere apology. I have shared your comments to the onboard flight manager so he can take appropriate action to prevent this from reoccurring.
On another note, your email was so interesting it prompted me to continue on to read your website and blog.
The New York Times has posted seven super-short columns on how to cut the U.S. military. All seven seem to support cutting the military in one way or another. That's excellent, and I don't mean to complain, but . . . .
The United States has the largest military in the world. We could cut it by 85% and still have the largest military in the world. And that's without counting all the military spending that we funnel through departments other than the Pentagon, spending that brings our annual total to around $1 trillion.
In 1998, five Cuban men were arrested by the U.S. government and tried in Miami on charges of conspiring to commit espionage on the United States.
The five men’s mission was to stop terrorism, keeping watch on Miami’s ultra-right extremists to prevent their violent attacks against Cuba. “The Cuban Five,” as they are now known, were convicted after repeated denials by the judge to move the trial venue out of Miami. The U.S. government insisted that they be tried in Miami.
What the Cuban Five and their attorneys did not know during trial was that the U.S. government—through its official propaganda agency, the Broadcasting Board of Governors—was covertly paying prominent Miami journalists who, at the same time as the government conducted its prosecution, saturated the Miami media with reports that were highly inflammatory and prejudicial to the Cuban Five.
So, the United States invaded Mexico, lied about it, killed, raped, pillaged, and stole half the country for the cause of expanding slavery in our growing continental empire. Then a devastated rump Mexico was invaded by the French who wanted their debts repaid, but the Mexicans won a big battle against the French on the Fifth of May, leading Americans to buy several tons of tacos and thousands of gallons of beer every Cinco de Mayo. Viva international solidarity in the land of Might-Makes-Right!
Secularists and Congressman Pete Stark have declared May 5th the Day of Reason, but how many people know that, how many television stations will stand for it, and how many Americans are even pretending to be reasonable?
Watch students Holly Donaldson, Russ Doubleday, Scott Hefferman, Evan Klondar & Kate Tummarello present their thesis "Are Talking Heads Blowing Hot Air? An Analysis of the Accuracy of Forecasts in the Political Media"
by Walter Brasch
It was a little before 9 a.m.
I was chatting with two students.
Another student came in, and asked if we had heard a plane had hit a building in New York City.
We hadn't, but I assumed it was a light private plane, and the pilot had mechanical difficulty or problems with wind turbulence.
A minute or so later, another student came in. It was a passenger jet, she said.
The first student had read the information in a text from a friend, who had received it from another friend, who may have heard it somewhere else. The second student had read it from her Palm Pilot, which brought in news from CNN. In a few moments I became aware of how news dissemination had changed, and it was the youth who were going to lead the information revolution.
A half-hour later, in an upper division journalism class, we were flipping between TV channels, and students were texting with friends on campus and in other states.
By Vige Barrie
May 2, 2011
Op-ed columnists and TV’s talking heads build followings by making bold, confident predictions about politics and the economy. But rarely are their predictions analyzed for accuracy.
Now, five Hamilton College seniors led by public policy professor P. Gary Wyckoff have analyzed the predictions of 26 prognosticators between September 2007 and December 2008. Their findings? Anyone can make as accurate a prediction as most of them if just by flipping a coin.
Their research paper, “Are Talking Heads Blowing Hot Air? An Analysis of the Accuracy of Forecasts in the Political Media” was presented via webcast on Monday, May 2, at www.hamilton.edu/pundit. The paper is also available at that address. Questions during the presentation were posed via Twitter using #hcpundit. The students responsible for this study include Holly Donaldson, Russell Doubleday, Scott Hefferman, Evan Klondar and Kate Tummarello.
By Dave Lindorff
In the end they couldn't get away with it.
As I noted back on Monday in my first article on the Sunday Navy SEAL raid into Pakistan that killed Osama Bin Laden, President Obama himself spilled the beans in his initial midnight statement, when he said, “After a firefight, they killed Osama bin Laden and took custody of his body.”
After that perhaps unintentionally honest account of an execution, the lies began, with White House chief counter-terrorism advisor (great title huh?) John O. Brennan fabulating that Bin Laden had "engaged in a firefight" with the SEALs who "entered the area of the house he was in," and adding, "Whether or not he got off any rounds, I frankly don't know." Then there were the lies that Bin Laden had shamefully used his wife as a "human shield," that he had been armed with an assault rifle, etc.
Media Lies and Misinformation on Bin Laden - by Stephen Lendman
Corporate media manipulators love a big story they can hype, distort and falsify to attract large audiences, unaware they're getting managed news, not truth.
Moreover, the bigger the event, the worse the reporting, and no matter how often they're fooled, madding crowds rely on proved unreliable sources like US cable and broadcast TV, as well as corporate broadsheets and popular magazines publishing rubbish not fit to print.
After Obama's May day announcement, round-the-clock coverage now features "story one" ad nauseam, cheerleading the death of a dead man with no one allowed on to refute it.
A previous article did, accessed through the following link:
Separating fact from fiction, it explained:
By Yasmeen Ali
Lahore, Pakistan -- I am incredulous!
I’ll say one thing: this US Special Forces operation deserves a standing ovation for immaculate execution. Except that some details do get confusing.
Maybe I’m just slow, but truly, viewing the still pictures of the compound where Osama was shot to death that are being aired on local TV here, I am left spell-bound by many odd contradictions.
First, the wall that encircled the compound, which was blasted through to allow entry to the US attackers, showed a humble charpoy next to a water geyser and a few odd household items stacked right next to the opening. Not a hair out of place, so to speak. It was all a little too orderly for my lawyerly taste. Wouldn’t something have been damaged or knocked over at least?
Al Jazeera's War on Syria - by Stephen Lendman
A previous article discussed Al Jazeera's war on Gaddafi, accessed through the following link:
Discussing its recent programming, it explained how compromised it's become. For example on Libya, it's been largely Western/Qatari propaganda, not legitimate news, information, and analysis.
It's Syria coverage has been similar, providing its host country regime friendly reporting. Qatar is part of the Washington-led NATO anti-Gaddafi coalition. Shamelessly, Al Jazeera News channel (JNC) is on board supporting it.
Like America's media and BBC, JNC's biased reporting got one of its prominent journalists to resign in late April - its Beirut chief and host of the popular Hiwar Muftuh (open dialogue) program, Ghassan Bin Jiddo.
According to the Lebanon newspaper, As-Safir, it was to protest its recent coverage of Arab uprisings, saying:
The plane I was on landed in Washington, D.C., Sunday night, and the pilot came on the intercom to tell everyone to celebrate: our government had killed Osama bin Laden. This was better than winning the Super Bowl, he said.
Set aside for a moment the morality of cheering for the killing of a human being -- which despite the pilot's prompting nobody on the plane did. In purely Realpolitik terms, killing foreign leaders whom we've previously supported has been an ongoing disaster.
Our killing of Saddam Hussein has been followed by years of war and hundreds of thousands of pointless deaths. Our attempts to kill Muammar Gadaffi have killed his children and grandchildren and will end no war if they eventually succeed. Our attempts to kill Osama bin Laden, including wars justified by that mission, have involved nearly a decade of senseless slaughter in Afghanistan and the rest of the ongoing global "generational" war that is consuming our nation.
Here's a blog that readers of Dailykos despised:
Here's one a day later (currently on their most-popular list) that they loved:
FireDogLake loved both. Democratic Underground got into a bitter split over the first one and loved the second one.
The first one criticizes Obama and the second one criticizes Alan Simpson, a Republican.
Now, that's not all that they do. And the first one is not beyond the range of possible criticism quite apart from targeting Obama.
But the first one describes something that Obama did. He signed into law a health insurance reform bill that made it much more difficult for states to enact single-payer healthcare. An amendment to fix that had been passed in committee overruling the committee chairman. Speaker Pelosi had gone on TV and said she'd had to strip the amendment out of the final bill because of Obama's promise that everyone could keep their existing insurance if they wanted to. I also claimed to know that the committee chair and Pelosi had been instructed in this detail (as in every other on this bill) by Obama. Few at DailyKos wanted to take my word for it. They were also quite obsessed with the fact that Obama has more recently said he would support legislation to allow Vermont waivers needed to create a single-payer healthcare system. That such a bill would be hard to pass, and that Obama is responsible for Vermont NEEDING the waivers in the first place (or at least needing them much more badly than before) seems to be of no interest. Words speak louder than actions. Unless they are my words and they are criticizign a Democrat.
In the second blog, I wrote about an event, and I included videos of some of it. But the key points that I highlighted in my text I did not include video for. DailyKosers had just my word to go by, yet they were happy to do so. After all, Simpson is a Republican.
I don't mean to pick on Kos in particular, but to use it as an example of a popular Democratic-loyalist site. Facts get filtered. Some are more welcome than others.
Reports have emerged over efforts by the Obama administration to chastise the San Francisco Chronicle, and in particular its reporter, Carla Marinucci, for reporting on a protest staged during an Obama fundraiser in support of incarcerated whistleblower, Bradley Manning.
Marinucci was present during the San Francisco fundraiser on April 21st when several Obama supporters stood to address the president with a protest song written specially for such occasions.
This letter is from SAID YOUSIF ALMUHAFDAH, a blogger and human rights activist from Bahrain.
Thanks in Advance
journalist arrested in Bahrain
Please not that the police arrested the well known bloger and journalist in alwasatnewspaper mr haidar alnayme two days ago on 24-04-2011 , and we dont knwo his place , his family didnt get the chance to visit him or call him he is disapear
please find the below details from Committee to Protect Journalists
if you need any information about him or family contact let me know
Bahrain center for human rights
SURPRISE ATTACK A LIE
by Richard Ochs
Corporate U.S. hawks Am E (traditional flamenco chord pattern)
Hoarding gold that talks F E
Started all our foreign wars C G
By engineering shocks. F E
Claiming Iraq production
Of weapons of mass destruction
Danger from Iraq wasn’t a fact.
It was a false construction.
Bait and switch was the trick
To start the first Gulf war.
Google and see April Glaspie,
The U.S. ambassador,
Who told Saddam there was no problem:
With Kuwait to settle a score.
Surprise attack a lie! Dm E
Surprise attack a lie! Dm E
The bosses knew what was due A G
But not you and I F E
And not those who die. F E
They made it happen, or let it happen on purpose. G F E
Al Jazeera's War on Gaddafi - by Stephen Lendman
Based on its recent Libyan and Gulf states reporting (or lack thereof), Qatar-based Al Jazeera's credibility appears extremely compromised.
A previous article said the following:
Overall, its Libya misreporting has been deceitful, functioning more as a propaganda arm for Washington, NATO and insurgents, indistinguishable from US and other western media, representing imperial conquest, colonization, and pillaging of another non-belligerent country.
In late March, moreover, Front Page writer Mohammed al-Kibsi accused Al Jazeera of airing old Iraqi prisoner abuse video, broadcast by Al-Arabiya in 2007, in fabricating news about Yemen.
Every war ever fought has been sold to both sides as a fight between the forces of good and evil. Politicians are willing to tell any lie to ensure the public believe they were in the right and the enemy undeniably in the wrong.
In War is a Lie, anti-war activist David Swanson deconstructs virtually every argument ever put forward in favour of war. Drawing on examples throughout history, including the Second World War and the Iraq War, he shows how politicians will use any excuse not simply to justify war but to continue it after the death toll has long since shown the utter futility of continuing with the bloodshed. and showing how politicians will use any excuse not simply to justify war but to continue it after the death toll have long since shown the utter futility of continuing with the bloodshed.
‘David Swanson despises war and lying, and unmasks them both with rare intelligence. I learn something new on every page.’ Jeff Cohen, founder of Fair and author of Cable News Confidential
David Swanson is the author of Daybreak: Undoing the Imperial Presidency and Forming a More Perfect Union. Swanson holds a master’s degree in philosophy from the University of Virginia. He is cofounder of WarIsACrime.org (formerly afterDowningStreet.org). Swanson was instrumental in exposing the Downing Street Minutes and other evidence of Iraq war lies. He served as press secretary for Dennis Kucinich’s 2004 presidential campaign.
For press, publicity, review copies and interview requests, please contact email@example.com 02070911264
(This article is the first of seven pieces dedicated to the Cuban revolution and its defeat of the US imperialist invasion 50 years ago, April 17-19, 1961, and embraces my half-century struggle.)
I. Sharing Che’s Activism
Che’s penetrating eyes stare at me seriously as I write about him. It is strange that I have never written about him before, other than to quote him. Perhaps it is because Che has been too large a figure for me to tackle? I don’t know. This writing, though, is a commemoration of Che and of my 50 years in our common struggle.
Ernesto Guevara was my greatest personal inspiration and Cuba’s revolution was my greatest collective inspiration—along with the Vietnamese resistance fighters. Nicknamed Che, an Argentine expression, he lived and died as he preached. Che’s internationalist ideals, his consequent actions, his integrity and charm, have influenced my life all these decades.
SURPRISE!! THERE IS, TOO, AN ANTI-WAR MOVEMENT! IT'S JUST THAT THE TEA PARTY GETS ALL THE MEDIA COVERAGE
You'd think there is a huge Tea Party group in the U.S. and virtually no opposition. But, that is strictly a myth created and perpetuated by the media. To the contrary, there is an alive and well anti-war movement composed of people from all over the country. One wonders why the media seems so intent on promoting the Tea Party and ignoring the probably larger but less visible peace movement.
By John Grant
The battle over the meaning of a traumatic experience is fought in the arena of political discourse, popular culture and scholarly debate. The outcome of this battle shapes the rhetoric of the dominant culture and influences future political action.
--Kali Tal, Worlds Of Hurt: Reading the Literature of Trauma
There’s a major struggle for meaning going on in America now that centers on war trauma among returning soldiers and veterans of our wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and, now, Libya.
You would be doing more good with your hard earned pay.
By Dave Lindorff
There was a truly bizarre and telling paragraph at the end of a Wall Street Journal news report today on Pakistan’s demand that the US bring home hundreds of CIA and Special Forces personnel operating undercover in that country, and that it halt the drone strikes in the border regions abutting Afghanistan, which have been killing countless civilian men, women and children.
Reporters Adam Entous and Matthew Rosenberg, with no sense of irony, wrote:
The US hasn’t committed to adjusting the drone program in response to Pakistan’s request. The CIA operates covertly, meaning the program doesn’t require Islamabad’s support, under US law. Some officials say the CIA operates with relative autonomy in the tribal areas. They played down the level of support they now receive from Pakistan.
By Charles M. Young
In the past few months, Obama has had time to play golf. He’s had time to fill out his NCAA basketball playoff bracket. He’s had time to go to Chile, a country prone to terrible earthquakes, and sell them new nuclear reactors. He’s had time to go to Florida and tell Jeb Bush what a great job he did on education. He’s had time to be a “bridge” between John Boehner and Harry Reid.
Obama did not have time to go to Wisconsin.
That would be the same Wisconsin whose unions donated money and turned out for him at mass rallies so that Obama could collect Wisconsin’s 10 electoral votes in 2008.
That would be the same Wisconsin which was so demoralized by Obama’s first two years of broken promises that Democrats didn’t turn out in 2010, thus dooming Russ Feingold to defeat in the Senate and allowing the election of Scott Walker as governor.