Autopsy disproves police version of shooting of Mansur Ball-Bey

Mansur Ball-Bey

Autopsy results on Mansur Ball-Bey–the 18-year-old shot dead by police last Wednesday in Ferguson, Missouri–contradict the version of events told by police. Police authorities claimed he pointed a gun at them as he fled a home they were serving with a search warrant. They say he dropped his weapon & took off running after officers fired four shots at him–one of those shots fatal.

The autopsy by the chief medical examiner shows Ball-Bey died from a single bullet shot in the back which hit his heart & would have killed him instantly, making it impossible for him to keep running.
There’s no way Police Chief Sam Dotson can finesse this crime but that didn’t stop him from trying. He said the location of the fatal shot doesn’t prove or disprove the police narrative–“Just because he was shot in the back doesn’t mean he was running away.” We’ll let that idiocy stand without comment.

According to the young man’s family–who don’t believe the police account–he wasn’t a troublemaker or delinquent. He had gone over to a relative’s house after his regular job at FedEx & was still wearing his work uniform. He graduated in June from high school, worked part-time, was active in the Moorish Temple, & was planning on going to college this fall.

Our deepest condolences to the family. May he Rest in Peace.

(Photo is Mansur Ball-Bey provided by family)

Frontex at the Greek-Macedonia border

Frontex at the Greek-Macedonia border (Georgi Licovski:EPA) August 22 2015

Frontex at the Greek-Macedonia border: Frontex is the thug squad of European Union immigration policy–the same thug squad allowing thousands of immigrants to drown in the Mediterranean Sea.

Macedonian police are blocking refugees trying to cross what the Guardian-UK calls “an illegal crossing point on the border.” Another case of the devil being in the details. As part of a joint operation agreement with the EU & Frontex, Macedonian riot police & military are throwing up razor-wire fencing & using tear gas & grenades against unarmed refugees. The entire border is now an “illegal crossing point.”

This photo speaks for itself & condemns EU immigration policy for the barbarism it is. Imagine that Frontex at the behest of European politicians allows human beings to drown & denies sanctuary to thousands fleeing war & bombing! That’s the barbarism of neoliberalism, the barbaric phase of capitalism.

Immigration is a human right. Sanctuary for refugees is a human right. Open the damn borders.

(Photo by Georgi Licovski/EPA)

Eighteen-year-old Mansur Ball-Bey shot dead by police in Ferguson, Missouri

Ferguson ( Michael B. Thomas:Getty Images) August 21 2015

According to police authorities, on Wednesday morning Ferguson, Missouri police executed a search warrant on a house for what appears to be a routine drug bust. They claim two armed young men took off out the back door & when police in the alley ordered them to drop their guns, one of them opened fire. Police shot one “suspect” dead & the other took off. Eighteen-year-old Mansur Ball-Bey was shot four times. Since the other “suspect” is a witness to what actually happened, he better keep running.

Since Missouri has an open carry law which they proclaim “inalienable” & since they allow the Oath Keepers, a white vigilante group from outside Ferguson, to patrol the Black community with AK-47s, it would be necessary for them to explain why they ordered the two young men to drop their guns. If you can carry an open weapon in a coffee shop, why not your own back yard?

There have of course been protests in the Black community against the shooting of Ball-Bey. To justify the shooting, police claim they found four more guns & crack cocaine in the house. Once again, Missouri is an open carry state so those guns are not illegal. To cover their asses, police claimed the guns were stolen. Yeah sure. And since when is summary execution a legal way of addressing drug possession?

Media reports that ‘some protesters express doubt over the police account of Ball-Bey pointing a gun’. All of them do or they wouldn’t be out there protesting while police are moving in armored vehicles, & responding with tear gas & grenades.

Media also reports ‘the city has been on edge’ since a white police officer shot & killed 18-year-old Michael Brown on Aug. 9, 2014. The Black community is “on edge” because their civil liberties are being massively & systematically denied–& that was confirmed in a report by the US Department of Justice.

These protesters were out last night chanting during a march surrounded by riot cops. Our fullest solidarity with them because ‪#‎BlackLivesMatter‬. And because the Bill of Rights in the Black community matters.

(Photo by Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images)

European Union/Frontex crackdown on Greek-Macedonian border

Greek-Macedonian border (Alexandros Avramidis:Reuters) August 21 2015

And so the EU/Frontex crackdown on refugees coming through Greece has begun full-force–not only with aggression against refugees on the island of Kos but now on the Macedonian border with Greece. Macedonia is not an EU member state but the EU has joint operation agreements with non-member states involving Europol & Frontex to police the borders.

Macedonian authorities declared a state of emergency & deployed riot police & the army in armored vehicles rolling out razor-wire fencing to seal the border with Greece. Witnesses reported they used tear gas & stun grenades to drive refugees, including small children & elderly, back into Greece. According to some refugees in the border assault, families got split up with some being driven back into Greece & others managing to break the military cordon & enter Macedonia.

Those refugees who make it through Macedonia pass through Serbia & still face the razor-wire fence on the Serbia-Hungary border which Hungary is racing to construct. Since most of the refugees move quickly through Macedonia to get further north into Europe, they are not a social service burden on the regime–though fortuitously the crisis does deflect attention from the political crisis facing the Macedonian regime over allegations of corruption, illegal surveillance & repression.The primary reason for the crackdown is not however the regime crisis but EU policies & the EU joint operation agreement with Macedonia.

We’re glad to hear UN refugee agencies find the situation deplorable but wish they would move beyond their usual hand-wringing to condemnations of the EU & Frontex & demand Macedonia remove its troops & re-open the border. One UN official said Greece estimated between 3,000 & 4,000 refugees are stuck in a no-man’s land at the border without access to medical & humanitarian services. That will only increase as the crackdown continues & there is a major human rights crisis to deal with. Human rights crises exist on every major immigration route in the world only because political regimes deny human beings the ancient right of asylum from war, occupation, poverty.

This photo is one incident today of a refugee & his frightened child running from riot police firing stun grenades to disperse them. The barbarism against them will only increase without worldwide expressions of outrage.

Immigration is a human right. Open the borders.

(Photo by Alexandros Avramidis/Reuters)

Ballet classes & military training in Gaza

Gaza ballet class (Majdi Fathi:NurPhoto:Corbis) August 20 2015

Now isn’t this a reason to build the economic, cultural, & academic boycott of Israel (BDS)!? These little girls are taking ballet lessons at the Qattan Institute, an educational & cultural center in Gaza City.

One Zionist publication expressed alarm that young women in Gaza are being militarily trained–while US media has been boasting for three days that two women just completed military training with the Rangers, the special operations unit in the US army. The difference is Gaza is under military siege without any defense & no country in their right mind would attack the US because its anti-missile system is Israel’s Iron Dome system writ large.

Who wants children to grow up in a world of military fortresses & anti-missile systems? The creativity of children in music, art, poetry, dance is the future of humanity–not obstacle courses & weapons training. But meanwhile, Gaza is under military siege & young women want to participate in its defense so their children & younger sisters can dance.

(Photo by Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto/Corbis)

Slum evictions in Jakarta for gentrification

Kampung Pulo (Tribun News:Herudin) August 20 2015

The few media sources reporting on this conflict in Indonesia are terse in their descriptions: ‘residents of Kampung Pulo in Jakarta clash with riot cops after the city moved in to evict them from illegal dwellings in a flood-zone along the banks of the Ciliwung river.’ It sounds like the authorities are doing ungrateful slum-dwellers a favor by evicting them. Brevity is media shorthand for too many damn lies to count.

Most of the slum dwellers on the Ciliwung banks are migrant workers & rural people who came to Jakarta for work after being forcibly displaced by palm oil agribusiness firms, in collusion with the Indonesian government, using slash & burn methods of deforestation & land expropriation. According to human rights groups, there are an estimated 4,000 land-related conflicts between palm oil plantation owners & local communities & farmers. Indonesia is the largest producer of palm oil in the world. The deforestation & destruction of peatlands involved in the spread of plantations means it is also the world’s third largest emitter of greenhouse gases.

As an equatorial & tropical archipelago, Indonesia has annual monsoonal rains & much of Jakarta is below sea level so it has always been prone to flooding. But it is getting clobbered with the effects of climate change which are triggering annual major floods. Warmer seas heat up monsoon winds that carry moisture from ocean to land, bringing extra heavy rain & burying the capital city in up to 17 feet of flood water. According to the government environmental official, Indonesia could lose 2,000 islands by 2030 due to rising sea levels from climate change. The official admits heavy flooding is not only a climate phenomenon but due to waterways choked with debris (the case with the Ciliwung River), lack of adequate flood control systems, & the large-scale deforestation to build palm oil plantations & make room for a huge construction boom in Jakarta’s water catchment areas.

Indonesian authorities didn’t move 2,155 riot cops in to Kampung Pulo with tear gas & water cannons to save the residents from flooding & squalid conditions. Like in every other country where they’re forcibly evicting slum residents, it is to privatize the lands & gentrify with swanky malls, luxury apartments, casinos, & resorts. There are several development plans laid out for the banks of the Ciliwung River.

Negotiations have been going on for a while between authorities & Kampung Pulo residents. Only a few weeks ago, authorities made promises of alternative low-cost housing. Residents of the 546 dwellings wanted compensation instead of apartments. Today authorities say the dwellings were built illegally on public lands so they will be evicted & the homes demolished without compensation. There is of course no alternative housing for residents to move to.

The global demand for Indonesia’s natural resources made it profitable for foreign investors & fueled the rise of Indonesian fortunes from coal, palm oil, oil & gas. The fortunes of Indonesia’s 12 billionaires & countless millionaires are built on deforestation & plundering of resources so the regime is unlikely to alter the profitable ventures causing global warming, provide for a flood control infrastructure, or provide affordable housing to the hundreds of thousands displaced.

Photo is of confrontation today between residents & police. Three residents were injured in the confrontation & 27 were arrested, at last report. Our fullest solidarity with their struggle.

(Photo from Herudin/Tribun News)

Vilifying of Black Lives Matter continues by Sanders supporters

The vilifying of Black Lives Matters (BLM) continues despite reports it is under surveillance by the Department of Homeland Security. Disparaged by Sanders & Green Party supporters while they receive backhanded respect from a government that considers them potentially dangerous.

One may disagree with their disruptions & meetings with Democratic politicians like Sanders & Clinton but they are doing what several radical commentators, including Noam Chomsky, have recommended. Chomsky said he was glad Sanders was running because Sanders will push the Democratic Party (DP) to the left & be a “thorn in the side” to Clinton. Others have said Sanders will force the DP to take up issues of inequality & structural racism. Fat chance!

Truth of the matter is BLM activists are naive about the DP–just as naive as Chomsky & other radical commentators. That’s no reason to vilify them. There is no pushing the dead weight of the DP to the left. That’s a well-trodden strategy & the result has always been that those who took that route end up as cynics or hacks who lose their vision of social transformation & start making deals for sinecures & status.

Gerry Adams & anchor baby Donald Trump

Gerry Adams and Donald Trump shake hands in New York in 1995. Photo- The Irish Voice

You can file this under “Who Knew!?” The 1995 photo of Gerry Adams & Donald Trump taken at a NYC fundraising event for Sinn Fein might explain something about the political degeneration of Adams in another case of laying down with dogs & getting up with fleas. Adams had been denied a visa to enter the US until 1994 when then president Bill Clinton approved him for a 48-hour visa. We should have seen it coming.

In the same article we learn that Trump is what he xenophobically & disparagingly calls “an anchor baby,” a child born to an immigrant & constitutionally considered a US citizen. His mother was Mary Anne MacLeod, a Scottish immigrant (in the turn of the century wave of immigration) from the Isle of Lewis off the west coast of Scotland.

(Photo from the Irish Voice)

Clinton & her classified emails

We have no vested interest in securing Clinton’s “classified” information from exposure. Every last piece of it should be exposed–especially her role in turning Haiti into a sweatshop haven & using the suffering of Haitians for the personal enrichment of her family.

Who invented algebra?

The things you learn from snooping around Zionist Facebook sites. I thought it was historically undisputed that Arabs invented algebra–especially since the word is from the Arabic “al-jabr” meaning “reunion of broken parts.” But when I read a snide refutal on a Zionist Facebook wall, I went to Wikipedia which is owned by a committed Zionist feted in Israel.

Wikipedia’s posts having anything to do with Palestine or Israel are notoriously dishonest but I figured on the question of algebra they’d play straight. Wikipedia claims algebra is from Babylonian not Egyptian mathematics–& anyway the Egyptian guy who made mathematical history was Greek.

A little more googling around & I found this gem: according to the book Mathematics Across Cultures: The History of Non-Western Mathematics, “Throughout these 3000 years, the Greeks, Indians, Chinese, Muslims, Hebrews & Christians seem to have done no more than present their own versions of solutions to linear & quadratic equations, which were well known to the Babylonians.”

I’m perfectly willing to grant Greeks, Indians, & Chinese played roles in the development of algebra invented by the Babylonians. But if Arabs played no role, why did they get to name it? Was it like a booby prize? And how does religion enter into all this? “Muslims, Hebrews & Christians” had their own versions? Not in the Bible. Does algebra show up in the Quran?

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)