In Megiddo prison, Ramon prison, and the Negev desert prison, Palestinian political prisoners burned their rooms in resistance to the prison administration’s attempt to transfer the prisoners affiliated with Islamic Jihad. The Handala Center for Prisoners and Former Prisoners in occupied Palestine reported that 7 rooms in Megiddo prison, 4 rooms in the Negev prison and 4 rooms in sections 4 and 5 of Ramon prison have been burned, and that the prisoners’ movement leadership has affirmed that any section that is invaded to transfer detainees will be met with fire. Palestinians throughout occupied Palestine are rallying in support of the six self-liberated prisoners, whose “Freedom Tunnel,” dug through lengthy months of perseverance with only kitchen utensils for tools, has become a symbol of hope for freedom as well as an example that the technological and military might of the Israeli colonial power has been unable to suppress Palestinian resistance.
Last Friday’s New York Times included Paul Krugman’s elementarily accurate editorial observation that “Donald Trump…is indeed a fascist – an authoritarian willing to use violence to achieve his racial nationalist goals. So are many of his supporters. If you had any doubts,” Krugman rightly argued, the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol (by a frenzied mob of fascists directly instigated by Donald Trump and his Big fascist Lie that the 2020 election was stolen!) “should have ended them.” Some of us lost our doubts about that long ago. In May of 2016, the liberal New Yorker commentator Adam Gopnik issued what turned out to be a prophetic warning seven months before Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton
This year's Grassroots Radio Conference will be a virtual summit, Friday to Sunday, October 9 to 11. The annual event is typically hosted by a Pacifica Radio affiliate station, most recently by K UHS H ot Springs-Arkansas in 2016, WCAA-Alban y in 2017, KB O O-Portland in 2018, and three low-power FM stations, WXIR , WAYO , and WEPL in Rochester, New York, in 2019. The coronavirus lockdown forced this year's conference to go virtual, but it will still be hosted as planned by WX OX -Louisville. WXOX broadcasts to the community still rising up in response to Louisville police killing emergency medical technician Breonna Taylor and Kentucky National Guard killing barbecue chef David McAtee, both of whom were Black.
Trade unions are on the defensive all over the world, under immense pressure from strong economic and political forces. We are facing a multiplicity of crises. Employers are attacking on all fronts, and the pandemic is being used as an excuse further to undermine unions, wages and working conditions. Since the neoliberal offensive began around 1980, we have experienced an enormous shift in the balance of power, from labour to capital. In spite of that, large parts of the trade union movement have continued to cling to the ideology of social partnership – with social dialogue as its main method of influence – which, in the current situation, is proving counterproductive.
Crises bring out the worst and best in people, and they do so on a mass scale. Since the beginning of the Coronavirus pandemic, we have seen plenty of toilet paper hoarding and other selfish acts, but arguably even more goodhearted people asking, “What else can I do?” Movement organizers themselves have been asking, “What infrastructure do we have, and how can we pivot it toward crisis response?” These are important questions to be asking right now, but organizers should take them one step further. Choosing to repurpose one’s movement toward community needs in times of crisis has short- and long-term strategic value. In this article I share a few thoughts about how movements can build power by serving their local communities—immunizing their movements from losing momentum with a “vaccine” of constructive programs and obstructive strategies.
As the global COVID-19 crisis builds up its incredible momentum, for which an apex is still months to come, the mainstream media and so-called policymakers are dazed and confused, lost in graphs of exponential case counts and body counts; shipments of masks and respirators; and the assembly of makeshift hospitals. Everywhere the morgues are filling up and the crematoriums are burning the cadavers at full tilt. While the palpable fear of death looms everywhere, the 2,020 members of the billionaire class, and their worldwide political surrogates, have an eye on other graphs: not going up like the graphs of the deaths, but plunging in an even more dramatic configuration. It is, of course, the COVID-19 induced crash of all financial markets and the precipitous dive of oil price. It is the Great COVID-19 Depression.
A live XRTV #alonetogether interview with Chris Hedges, American journalist and author. Chris won the Pulitzer Prize while at the New York Times and has written a number of groundbreaking books on the crises we face. He will talk about the massive changes which are now upon us - why this has been coming for a long time and how it relates to the climate crisis. He will speak on what the future will look like and our responsibility to shape it into a humane outcome rather than the default of fascism which we are heading towards at the moment.
This week on On Contact with Chris Hedges, Dr. Margaret Flowers and attorney Kevin Zeese speak about social transformation and building a culture of resistance. They discuss the roles of movements and electoral politics in social change and the necessity of direct action to impact the power structure. They also discuss the free Popular Resistance School. Hedges was involved in organizing the occupation of Freedom Plaza in 2011, part of the Occupy Movement, and the strategy retreat that led to the founding of Popular Resistance in 2013. Hedges' first-hand knowledge of major transformations that countries have experienced while being a foreign correspondent for the New York Times informs the work of Popular Resistance.
The struggle against the monstrous radical evil that dominates our lives—an evil that is swiftly despoiling the earth and driving the human species toward extinction, stripping us of our most basic civil liberties and freedoms, waging endless war and solidifying the obscene wealth of an oligarchic elite at our expense—will be fought only with the belief that resistance, however futile, insignificant and even self-defeating it may appear, can set in motion moral and spiritual forces that radiate outward to inspire others, including those who come after us. It is, in essence, an act of faith. Nothing less than this faith will sustain us.
As 2018 comes to a close, we bring back this interview with Kali Akuno from January, 2017, just prior to President Trump's inauguration. Akuno has been an organizer in the South for decades and is currently active with Cooperation Jackson in Mississippi. He started a movement called "Ungovernable" to encourage resistance to oppressive policies and the building of alternatives. Akuno brings a wealth of experience and wisdom when it comes to organizing, political analysis and the state of the movement in the US. This is a must listen as we prepare for 2019 and beyond.
June 29, 2018 "Information Clearing House" - The Government of Venezuela called an international Presidential Economic Advisory Commission, 14-16 June, 2018 – to debate the current foreign injected economic disturbances and seeking solutions to overcome them. I was privileged and honored to be part of this commission. Venezuela is literally being strangled by economic sanctions, by infiltrated elements of unrest, foreign trained opposition leaders, trained to disrupt distribution of food, pharmaceutical and medical equipment. Much of the training and disturbance in the country is financed by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), an “NGO” that receives hundreds of millions of dollars from the State Department to “spread democracy” and provoke “regime change” around the world...
All around the world people invent, adapt and share techniques for resilience and resistance to tear gas. In doing so, they care for each other. They transform this weapon into a collectivizing tool. There is a growing transnational solidarity of tear gas resilience, aided by social media and mobile technologies that help protesters circulate relief remedies, gas mask designs and grenade throwback techniques. Displaying what social movement researcher Gavin Grindon has called “grassroots cultural diplomacy,” these tips are tweeted from Greece to New York, from Palestine to Ferguson, from Egypt to Hong Kong. In places like Bahrain and Palestine, widespread and even daily use of tear gas has made this chemical weapon a part of life.
People have noted that the last year has seen an escalation of protest activity in the United States. Many of these protests are generated by opposition to Donald Trump, e.g. protests against immigration policies, and many have partisan leanings, e.g. the Women's March, the March for Science and others by circumstances, e.g. the March or Our Lives against gun violence. Protests began on the weekend of Donald Trump's Inauguration, indeed there may have been more protesters at the inauguration than supporters of the president. The poll also found that 14 percent of people in the US worked or volunteered for any group that tries to influence government policy on issues you care about, NOT including working for a political party or candidate. Forty percent said they contacted any elected official by phone, over the internet, by mail, or in person. Fifty percent said they signed a petition, either on paper or over the internet, about a social or political issue. Forty-one percent bought or boycotted a certain product or service. . .