Empire, Indigenous Rights And The Environment

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By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese for Clearing the FOG Radio. With Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, wildfires and droughts fresh in our minds and threats of greater global aggression, we take a look at the connections between Empire, war, Indigenous rights and the environment. This week is the tenth anniversary of the official adoption of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. We speak with Gar Smith, editor of The War and the Environment Reader, about his new book and a conference he is organizing later this month with World Beyond War on the topic. Then we speak with Charmaine White Face, author of Indigenous Nations’ Rights in the Balance, who participated in and protested the process used by the United Nation, about Indigenous sovereignty and her work to protect the Black Hills, a sacred site.

Fossil Fuel Lobbyist By Day, WaPo Columnist By Night

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By Adam Johnson for FAIR – What is the point of Ed Rogers, the Washington Post’s most conflict-ridden, mediocre columnist (FAIR.org, 4/23/15)? He doesn’t add a lot to the discourse, his boilerplate Republican talking points could be better written by any number of Heritage fellows, he shills for Trump in the most boring ways possible, and—most glaringly of all—is an actual paid lobbyist for an assortment of sleazy industry interests, via his lobbying firm BGR Group. So why does a major paper feel the need to continue to give him column inches? Rogers has major conflicts of interest, as AlterNet and Media Matters have noted: Among many other infractions, he neglected to mention his firm’s $500,000 fee from the Saudi regime while boosting Trump’s PR trip there, and promoted the shiny new weapon systems of his client Raytheon on the night Trump used them to bomb the Syrian Air Force. When he does disclose conflicts, it renders the rest of his writing limp and risible. Take his latest right-wing missive (9/5/17) lamenting the “lurch to the left” of the Democratic Party, which offers up one of the greatest self-owns in the history of the Post opinion section…

Disaster Coverage Blind Spot For Low Income Victims

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By Neil Demause for Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. as Hurricane Harvey has wreaked devastating flooding across southeast Texas, reporters’ ability to notice the nearly one-third of Americans living in or near poverty has again been put to the test. And though direct comparisons with Katrina are tough—Harvey is a different storm, playing out over days of rising waters instead of mere hours, and Houston chose not to call for residents to evacuate as New Orleans did in 2005—news coverage has revealed some of the same blind spots that have plagued reporting on previous natural disasters. The slow progression of floodwaters made for plenty of ready-made drama: At times, CNN seemed to have converted itself into a 24-hour rescue network, with tales of narrow escapes and heroic first responders.

Interior Ministry Shuts Down, Raids Left-Wing German Indymedia Site

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By Staff of Deutsche Welle – Germany’s Interior Ministry on Friday banned and ordered raids on a portal popular with leftist readers and activists. Possibly the last posts from linksunten.indymedia.org – commemorations of a 1992 far-right mob attack on apartments where foreigners lived in Rostock-Lichtenberg and reports of racist graffiti on a memorial to a young woman killed by neo-Nazis in the United States – went live the previous night. The site was closed for “sowing hate against different opinions and representatives of the country,” said Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière, adding that the operation of the site was now “a criminal offence.” He said authorities were treating linksunten.indymedia.org as an “association” rather than a news outlet, which would help officials get around constitutional protections on freedom of expression. De Maizière said at least two people constituted an association – the site has up to seven administrators – and the ban would not affect the international award-winning Indymedia network. “We are currently searching multiple facilities,” said Baden-Württemberg state Interior Minister Thomas Strobl, a member of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats, which is also de Maizière’s party.

Exploring The Shadows Of America’s Security State

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By Alfred W. McCoy for Tom Dispatch. In the wake of the 2001 terrorist attacks, Washington pursued its elusive enemies across the landscapes of Asia and Africa, thanks in part to a massive expansion of its intelligence infrastructure, particularly of the emerging technologies for digital surveillance, agile drones, and biometric identification. In 2010, almost a decade into this secret war with its voracious appetite for information, the Washington Post reported that the national security state had swelled into a “fourth branch” of the federal government — with 854,000 vetted officials, 263 security organizations, and over 3,000 intelligence units, issuing 50,000 special reports every year. Though stunning, these statistics only skimmed the visible surface of what had become history’s largest and most lethal clandestine apparatus.

Correcting Eva Golinger On Venezuela

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By Stansfield Smith for Dissident Voice. As the class struggle heated up in Venezuela this year, fueled by interventionist threats by the pro-US Organization of American States (OAS) bloc, many former supporters of the Bolivarian revolution have remained sitting on the fence. Fed up with these fair-weather friends and their critiques which recycle corporate news propaganda, some defenders of Venezuela such as Shamus Cooke, Greg Wilpert, Maria Paez Victor, have come with articles clarifying the stakes and calling the so-called “left” to account. Among the disaffected is Venezuelan-American lawyer Eva Golinger, the author of The Chávez Code: Cracking US Intervention in Venezuela and self-described friend and advisor to Hugo Chávez.

Disinformation Terrorism Against Venezuela

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By Armando B. Gines for New Dawn. World elites dominate the main international media almost completely through an intricate network of associations that conceal the participation of transnational empires such as banks, weapons industries, energy industries, and financial and investment entities. The New York Times, Le Monde, Der Spiegel, the Financial Times, El País—renowned newspapers and TV networks impose the views of their shareholders on current events, dictating the agenda for the millions that make up their audience. In other words, they lead the collective attention to focus on their preferred topics while they intentionally cast a cloak of silence over other issues, according to their economic interests. As US linguist George Lakoff revealed, we only talk about that which the hegemonic power wants us to talk about.

NYT Claims US Opposed Honduran Coup It Actually Supported

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By Janine Jackson for FAIR. The August 14 New York Times reported that the threat by Donald Trump to use the US military against the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has brought together Latin American leaders, divided on other things, in opposition to US intervention. Along the way, reporter Nicholas Casey cites a regional expert who says, “An often ugly history of US interventions is vividly remembered in Latin America — even as we in the US have forgotten.” Which the Times followed thus: Under President Barack Obama, however, Washington aimed to get past the conflicts by building wider consensus over regional disputes. In 2009, after the Honduran military removed the leftist president Manuel Zelaya from power in a midnight coup, the United States joined other countries in trying to broker—albeit unsuccessfully—a deal for his return. There’s a word for that kind of statement, and the word is “lie.”

Channel Zero: A 24-7 Horizontal Anarchist Radio Station

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By Chris Steele. Channel Zero is a newly formed network of several anarchist and anti-authoritarian English language podcasts that launched on August 9, 2017. The 24-7 audio stream and website was organized to make radical podcasts more accessible. Current shows include: The Final Straw Radio, Kite Line Radio, Rust Belt Abolition Radio, the Crimethinc Ex-Worker Podcast, SubMedia, The Rebel Beat, A-Radio Berlin, The Danthropology Podcast, the Solecast, Which Side Podcast, Resonance: an Anarchist Audio Distro and the IGDCAST. According to Channel Zero: Our goal is to expand the reach of anarchist analysis into a larger and more public audience, within a horizontally run organization that is lead by the podcasters themselves.

Tell Your Congressmember To Save The Internet

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By Protect Our Internet. Right now your members of Congress are in their Home Districts…And they need to hear YOUR voice demanding they Protect Our Internet! Here’s The Scoop: On September 7th, Congress will hold a hearing on Net Neutrality inviting both ISPS and tech companies to testify. Before these CEOs take the stand, we have to make sure the PEOPLE are heard. What You Can Do: Visit the Town Hall Project to find out whether there’s a town hall being held in your area. If so, check out some sign and messaging ideas below. If not, pay your member of Congress a visit! Check out messaging and signage below and knock on their office door. Here’s a quick one-page primer on how to make the most out of your meeting! Town Hall or Office Visit, check out this list of social media posts and spread the word about #TeamInternet & the fight to #SaveTheInternet

What Is Behind Israel’s Attempt To Ban Al Jazeera?

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu listens to an adviser at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem onAugust 6 [Reuters/Gali Tibbonl]

By Mark LeVine for Aljazeera – The move is particularly odd since Al Jazeera and Israel have long had a symbiotic, if often adversarial, relationship. Despite long-standing and often harsh criticism of the Israeli occupation and its policies, Israel has afforded the channel relatively wide latitude in its coverage. There have been repeated grumblings over the years, and threats to close down its bureaus, but it hasn’t prevented coverage and commentary by Al Jazeera’s staff and contributing writers. Al Jazeera’s offices – like other media organisations – have been located for years in the same complex as the Government Press Office. Showing up for press credentials from the network has never caused any more trouble than I’ve experienced when I requested credentials for US news organisations, for example. In fact, it often felt like the relationship with Al Jazeera was a source of pride for Israeli media and press officials, one that reflected the unique set of circumstances that served each side well. For Israel, Al Jazeera, particularly the original Arab network, provided the government unprecedented opportunities to speak to Arab citizens across the region, beginning in the 1990s – at the height of the Olso peace process.

Amazon CEO Does Damage Becoming World's Richest Person

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By Adam Johnson for FAIR. The three most prominent US newspapers haven’t run a critical investigative piece on Jeff Bezos’ company Amazon in almost two years, a FAIR survey finds. The last major investigative piece on Amazon in the three most prestigious newspapers appeared almost two years ago (New York Times, 8/15/15). The last major investigative piece on Amazon in the three most prestigious newspapers appeared almost two years ago (New York Times, 8/15/15). A review of 190 articles from the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and the Bezos-owned Washington Post over the past year paints a picture of almost uniformly uncritical–ofttimes boosterish–coverage. None of the articles were investigative exposes, 6 percent leaned negative, 54 percent were straight reporting or neutral in tone, and 40 percent were positive, mostly with a fawning or even press release–like tone.

National Whistleblower Day: Stop Prosecuting Whistleblowers

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By Staff for Reporters Without Borders. To commemorate National Whistleblower Day (July 30), Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is urging the United States government to stop using legislation meant to prosecute spies and traitors against whistleblowers who leak information of public interest to the press. The heavy-handed prosecution of whistleblowers seriously undermines the First Amendment. Edward Snowden, the US’ most famous whistleblower, is still living in exile since he revealed the National Security Agency’s extensive surveillance of American citizens. If he ever returns home, he could face at least 30 years in prison for charges he faces under the Espionage Act. Less than six months into Trump’s term, former NSA contractor Reality Winner was arrested and charged with gathering, transmitting, or losing defense information under the same Act. The government’s charges came shortly after online news outlet The Intercept published a story featuring a leaked NSA document showing Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Winner’s case could be the beginning of a series of leak prosecutions to come under President Trump. Yet his predecessor famously prosecuted more whistleblowers than any previous administration combined.

The Guardian’s Propaganda On Venezuela: All You Need To Know

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By Ricardo Vaz for Off Guardian – With the Constituent Assembly elections due to take place on July 30th, the Guardian published a piece titled “Venezuela elections: all you need to know”. But instead of breaking through the fog of falsehood and misinformation that is typical of the mainstream media’s coverage of Venezuela, the Guardian comes up with another propaganda piece laden with lies, distortions and omissions. In this article we go through the Guardian’s piece, clarifying the falsehoods, adding the conveniently omitted information and questioning the whole narrative that is presented. WHAT IS HAPPENING ON 30 JULY? To be fair to the Guardian, there is one almost-informative paragraph, where the electoral procedure is explained. In a previous article the Guardian stated that […]election rules appear designed to guarantee a majority for the government even though it has minority popular support” instead of presenting said electoral rules and letting the reader decide if they are so designed. This time they do present the rules, only omitting to say that everyone not currently holding public office can run for a seat. But then the Guardian brings in the propaganda artillery to ensure the reader’s conclusions do not stray too far off from those of the State Department.

Venezuela Votes: Will The World’s Media Ever Get It Right?

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By Staff of Tele Sur – International coverage entirely ignores Sunday’s demonstration of support for a Constituent Assembly. Did you hear the one about a practice election in Venezuela, where millions of people lined up from early morning until late at night, just to cast their vote in a dry run poll that meant absolutely nothing at all? Except to express support for another election in two weeks time? Actually, it’s not a joke. It did happen. On Sunday. Video shows them singing and dancing as they waited to test voting machines and see how the election of a new Constituent Assembly on July 30 will work. But you probably never heard about it. Because the world’s media, pretty much without exception, concentrated almost exclusively on the other vote happening in Venezuela on Sunday, an informal plebiscite held by the opposition, with no constitutional status, to oppose that Constituent Assembly. So let’s just look at the quality media. The New York Times for example — you remember: “All the news that’s fit to print.” Well, maybe not ALL of it …