I am often several months behind the curve. For example, I watched "The Fog of War" on video just last night, despite its release half a year ago. I watched it because several friends who I respect told me it was very revealing (I will be skeptical of their judgement from now on). It is Robert McNamara, US Secretary of Defense during the Vietnam War, talking to the camera, interspersed with a little footage here and there.
The NewStandard is trying a novel approach to trying to get the US Army to provide some details on a torture case their paper is following. They want readers to contact the US Army directly and pressure them to provide the information they are refusing to provide. You can find out how to help them here.
First, I was alerted to an interesting piece by Uri Avnery by Samer Elatrash who wrote a similar piece. Both pieces treat the myth of the 'generous offer' that Israel gave the Palestinians. I find Tanya Reinhart's book, Israel/Palestine, to be the best antidote to this myth, but the new pieces treat an admission by a senior Israeli official to the same effect.
The young fellow and I have completely different approaches to almost everything -- some might say, charitably, that they are complementary approaches. But the truth is we have a lot in common as well. And I have a lot of respect for him, which is why I've been helping him out in whatever small ways I've been able to -- mostly with (what I think is reasonable) advice which he may or may not take. Perhaps because our approaches are so different I didn't think to promote his reports here, in spite of the fact that I am working with him on his project.
I was just reading the various pieces that ZNet republished from New Politics on the US elections. I would in particular recommend Steve Shalom's piece. Steve has a way of summarizing all the arguments on all sides in a sympathetic way, and then presenting the last word on the topic, that is really impressive. Years ago when I was confused about drugs, his piece on the subject clarified things for me in a similar way.
I just published an article to ZNet on the planned posting of a new Colombian armoured Brigade, created especially for the Venezuelan border. It is a troubling situation that needs more attention than it is getting.
Some more loathsome and fearful news on the Canadian elections. Harper's conservatives were leading in the polls but now, apparently, the Liberals and Conservatives are 'neck and neck' in a 'nail biting tug of war'.
There was a period a few months ago when there were many alternative and decent journalists in Iraq: Dahr Jamail (who is still there), Rahul Mahajan, Andrea Schmidt, Naomi Klein, and others. This coincided with the US invasion of Fallujah and a tremendous amount of news coverage of Iraq everywhere. Today though, there isn't as much coverage of what's going on.
Showing their deep concern about armed factions in Haiti Canadians under the US mission in Haiti kicked down another Haitian door, this time of Dany Toussaint, a politician, and recovering some weapons.
Open up markets or else. This is often the ultimatum governments of developing countries are given as they try to find a way out of severe poverty and economic stagnation. This "development" is anything but and has always come at a very very costly human price: death, displacement and deeper poverty. This is to say nothing of the real agendas motivating the U.S. and other industrialized countries to promote this form of gun-point development.