What’s with all the clamor for prosecuting the Bush-Cheney gang for sanctioning torture? Why stop there when Obama campaigned to close Guantanamo & end torture but instead continued both? Bush is conscienceless; Cheney is a psychopath, one gene away from a slug. Obama campaigned like he could distinguish evil. So if he can pretend a conscience, we can pretend to let him walk scot free of the stench & culpability of this report. He needs to face the music for these unspeakable crimes along with the Bush regime.
But this isn’t even just about the Bush & Obama regimes. The CIA was formed just after WWII as a US agency of the Cold War & has been involved in assassinations, coups, nefarious activities, torture since then. That’s their defined mission. According to Alfred W. McCoy, author of “A Question of Torture: CIA Interrogation, from the Cold War to the War on Terror”, the CIA spent billions just from the inception of the Cold War to the early 1960s to develop torture techniques which they used in Vietnam, the Philippines under Marco, Iran under the Shah, & at Abu Ghraib in Iraq. Now they involve regimes in other countries by teaching secret police around the world their torture techniques & by setting up torture centers abroad to elude oversight in the US.
The organization is rotten at its core; it’s not salvageable nor reformable. The global movement for justice must demand it’s crimes be exposed, it’s representatives hounded, it’s edifice be dismantled, & its members prosecuted. All those who sanctioned them, including those who allocated funds, need be held accountable & prosecuted too. It is the least we can do to provide justice for those who have suffered unspeakably & died at their hands.
Because I only get four TV channels my viewing options are quite limited. But even beggars have their standards. I can’t do soap operas, game shows (Though I must admit I do like checking Vanna White’s gowns.), or the Victoria’s Secret special tonight.
I don’t mind that young women strut in their underwear & ridiculous wing get-ups. The standards of 6 feet tall women under 100 pounds each is disturbing but we’re used to that. You know what’s the most creepy? That it’s a white supremacy parade. There’s something so Aryan (in the Nazi sense) about it all & I don’t think I’m just reading that ethos into this spectacle. The models are mostly blond but even if they threw a brunette in it wouldn’t change anything. If they threw in a Black model that wouldn’t change anything.
Fox News commentator Jeanine Pirro is making news for her comments after the killer cop was allowed to walk for murdering Eric Garner. With supreme arrogance & insolence (though still perfectly coifed), Pirro claimed on her TV show that the public needs retraining to show more sensitivity & obedience to cops. The killer cop now becomes the victim & Garner a belligerent disobedient boor who got what his insensitivity deserved.
Before we get all aghast at the racism & stupidity of Pirro we need take a gander at her personal & political history to see that her entire career is based on such swill. She’s a social climber from Westchester County north of NYC, married for nearly 40 years to Al Pirro (divorced last year), a hustler who got bagged & sent up the river for tax evasion on their personal wealth. He hasn’t been prosecuted for his mob connections or for buying her elective offices in Westchester because they partied at their mansion with all the highest officials in the state, including the governor. She hasn’t been prosecuted either for sharing in the income tax fraud. But then she has friends in high places.
Jeannie runs off at the mouth; Al prefers fisticuffs especially against restaurant staff & girl friends–people he considers his inferiors. He was prosecuted for disorderly conduct & unlawful restraint after getting arrested for roughing up his girl friend & not allowing her to leave a restaurant. Al made his fortune working as the legal muscle for real estate developers in Westchester. That’s where those mob connections came in handy. That’s where Jeannie got her sensitivity training.
Jeannie once made People magazine’s Most Beautiful People List. That may be one of the things keeping her mug shot off the walls of the post office. Her political connections don’t hurt either. Cause if there’s one thing Jeannie’s good at, it’s feathering her own nest, kissing ass to those she considers superior, & the most vile racism, including toward people of the same political genre like Barack Obama.
She once ran for US Senate as a Republican against Hillary Clinton & lost. But the only difference between them is the color of lipstick.
This is photo of Jeannie & Al practicing their pucker for the next ass they have to kiss.
(Photo by Timothy Fadek/Polaris)
This photo is being considered for an annual photojournalist award by the Guardian UK. It’s a Palestinian man holding up the body of one-year-old Noha Mesleh at her funeral on July 25th. The child was killed when Israel bombed the UN school used as a refugee center In Beit Hanun.
There are many reports, including in mainstream media, about the horrific physical & psychological trauma sustained by the children of Gaza who were directly targeted by Israeli bombers. But of course the trauma of adults who watched their children suffer & die or suffer & live with severe shrapnel damage, amputation, & psychic devastation is also massive. You can see that in the faces here. Especially as Zionists malign them as using their children for human shields; especially as they try to keep their children safe now midst mountains of cement rubble & without a place to live.
This is the kind of image circulated millions of times on social media that began unraveling the Exodus myth & exposed Israeli apartheid & ethnic cleansing. Palestinian solidarity does not exploit human suffering but we do not turn away from it either. This is a time for reaching out to build the economic & cultural boycott of Israel; for holding fundraisers for humanitarian aid to Gaza; for holding forums, debates, teach-ins so those with questions can learn about the conflict & come to side actively with Palestinian justice. The political energy of winter is not hibernation but the expansive one of solidarity.
(Photo by Mahmud Hams/AFP)
File this image under “The political uses of cognitive dissonance in war propaganda.” The media caption reads: “An Afghan laborer works at a plastic recycle factory in Herat, Afghanistan, December 8, 2014. Afghanistan’s economy has improved, with the help of international aid, after suffering decades of fighting.”
Deconstructing that caption will be a breeze. Plastics when recycled release toxic chemicals like benzene & dioxin & heavy metals like cadmium & lead. They’re released into the air, water, & ground where they enter the food supply. All that & all that international aid & they can’t come up with safety equipment for this young worker!?
As for that vaunted international aid, most of what was pledged by other countries was never delivered & what did get sent was ripped off by NGOS or used to bribe corrupt Afghan officials. You have to dig a little for that information but you can find it. It isn’t just reckless allegations. The international aid scam was exposed in Haiti, Afghanistan, & now Gaza. They keep up the charade only because it serves war mongering. Because as we can see, it does nothing to help workers, especially the thousands of children workers in Afghanistan. You can also file this image under “Emancipation-US style.”
(Photo by Jalil Rezayee/EPA)
Irish Central, a website of Irish-American news, showed uncustomary spunk when they objected to Patricia Napier-Fitzpatrick (whether she was born of Irish descent or married it we don’t know & don’t give a rat’s ass) who suggested people in the US show respect to Willie & KKKKaty by bowing & curtsying. Napier-Fitzpatrick is a former cosmetic executive, now owner of an etiquette school that teaches protocol to politicians & corporations so they don’t fart or pick their noses at gala affairs when they’re trying to sew up a deal. Good manners & common decency don’t always come with patrician privilege.
Irish Central gave our Miss Manners quite a history lecture on the Irish & American revolutions but judging from Irish friends she’s of that tradition of utter sycophancy to power rooted solidly among Irish politicians & which we know so well from our own Irish politicians. Irish Central should have let well enough alone with the history lesson but they went on to say the refusal to scrape & bow “is no reflection on the royal couple who have rescued the monarchy after years of titillation & terrible reviews, especially around the issue of Lady Di’s death.” Eyeyey! They suggested Americans give the “royal family the respect they deserve” but chided against servility. Offering your rump for them to kiss is exactly the respect moochocracy deserves & we hope all New Yorkers will take advantage of this lesson in etiquette.
There is another Irish tradition–that of the rebel, freedom fighter, & anti-royalist–& we thank our lucky stars some of those made it off the boat to counter the noxious influence of groveling.
There will be plenty to say by the time Willie & KKKKaty finish their trip to NYC. Presently Willie is at the White House meeting with Obama. To discuss what? Haute couture? Or troops in Afghanistan & Iraq?
KKKKaty, who’s living off the money cut from education & health care in England, toured a Harlem day care center with the mayor’s wife Chirlane McCray. It’s observable & quite creepy that the British moochocracy whose fortune rests on brutal colonialism seeks out photo ops with Blacks on their travels. Sometimes this doesn’t work out so well–like when Willie & KKKKaty were photographed riding a sedan chair borne by Blacks on one of their Commonwealth tours. We’re supposed to find it endearing when Harry chuckles it up with Black kids. It’s about as endearing as a Walmart ad.
Anyway this investigative reporter, unreconciled to any rapprochement with moochocracy, is on the ground looking for dirt against them & will keep you posted.
These Palestinian boys are going after an Israeli armored water cannon during a protest of Qadomem, the expanding Zionist settlement in the West Bank. The water cannon is not for irrigating fields; it’s an anti-riot assault weapon that causes multiple injuries including to internal organs & eyes & broken bones. Innovations in the use of water cannons include adding toxic dyes to the water & electrifying the water for additional harm.
Palestinians armed only with rocks & slingshots stand up against water cannons, bulldozers, & other armored vehicles, tear gas, & live ammo at weekly anti-settlement protests where hundreds of injuries & arrests are sustained by protesters.
Everyone recognizes the acceleration in Zionist settlements in the West Bank. The offenses are so egregious even Obama is putting on a dog & pony show of protest. The White House is issuing sharply worded statements & Obama is putting on his mad face for Netan-psycho. It’s the same kind of protest Obama issued about civilian deaths in Gaza during Operation Ethnic Cleansing which didn’t stop the Pentagon from supplying billions of military equipment to the the murderous campaign.
This week Obama is threatening Israel with sanctions over the settlements though we soon learn the sanctions would be only symbolic, not the debilitating kind used against Iraq or Iran. That means they’ll amount to little more than a “tut-tut” or the naughty finger because the US does not object to Israeli settlements & expropriation of Palestinians. It’s the tempo of the heist that’s at dispute. Israel is fundamental to US neoliberal scheming in the Middle East & the US doesn’t want that undermined by the psychotic intemperance & headlong rush of Israel to clear out the Palestinians by ethnic cleansing.
As the threat against Palestinians accelerates in Gaza & the West Bank, active solidarity becomes more imperative, starting with evangelizing for the cultural & economic boycott of Israel (BDS). This is a time for deepening education with forums & teach-ins & for combining that education with fundraising for humanitarian aid to Gaza. Education is as much a part of solidarity as protest rallies.
Our fullest solidarity with Palestinians. Boycott all Israeli products (barcode beginning 729); demand “No military aid to Israel!”
(Photo by Alaa Badarneh/EPA)
Protests erupted in Port-au-Prince, Haiti on Friday (Dec. 5th) demanding the resignation of former death squad member & president Michel Martelly & prime minister Laurent Lamothe, so palsy-walsy with Sean Penn. Protesters also accused the US of supporting the despised regime.
To prevent being ousted by popular vote, the Martelly regime has postponed elections since 2011 so they can rule by dictate. Media has shown some protesters holding up signs reading “Vladimir Putin, Please Help Us!” They wouldn’t be the only ones in the world confused by the political character of Putin. Volumes of nonsense is being written in his defense. Haitians would not need to turn to this disreputable, undemocratic politician if solidarity against decades of US military & economic intervention were stronger in this country, if it existed outside of a few cities.
This is where you see the value of racism in US foreign policy. Haiti was the first Black republic in the world, created in 1804 when an army of slaves defeated the army of Napoleon & became independent. That tradition of political resistance & intransigence has not been defeated. But it has also not been victorious against the armies of neoliberal plunder.
The US cannot let a Black-led republic prosper anymore than it can let a socialist country like Cuba survive. Such success up close & personal in the same hemisphere would lay to rest all the rancid lies taught US schoolchildren about the character of Blacks & about the character of socialism. Combined, this would shake the foundations of neoliberalism, the barbaric phase of capitalism, & possibly wield a death blow.
Both Clintons & the weasel Penn have worked with Martelly & Lamothe to turn Haiti into a sweatshop nation. It becomes tiresome to reiterate that solidarity in the US & around the world can help turn that situation around, can help the Haitian people throw off the yoke of tyranny & drive the US out. But that is the case. And that is the mission to create.
(Photo of protest in Port-au-Prince by Dieu Nalio Chery/AP)