|Progressive Calendar 04.20.07||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2007 02:59:18 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 04.20.07 1. Palestine 4.20 1:30pm 2. Art for peace 4.20 5pm 3. WasteDump/Somalia 4.20 6:30pm 4. Bent festival 4.20 6:30pm 5. Transgender rights 4.20 7pm 6. Rachel Corrie/play 4.20 7:30pm 7. Bill alert 4.20 8. AVP 4.20 9. Guatamala rights 4.21 10am 10. WAMM garage sale 4.21 10am 11. NWN4P Minnetonka 4.21 11am 12. Northtown vigil 4.21 2pm 13. WAMM Mayday prep 4.21 2pm 14. HotDish showdown 4.21 5pm 15. Muslims in MN/TV 4.21 8pm 16. Palestine 4.21 9pm 17. Gumbleton 4.22 9am 18. EarthDay/StMarks 4.22 10am 19. EarthDay/arts 4.22 11am 20. EarthDay films 4.22 11am 21. GroundTruth/film 4.22 12:30pm 22. Stillwater vigil 4.22 1pm 23. InconvenientTruth 4.22 2:15pm 24. UFPJ 4.22 4:15pm 25. Patrick Cockburn - Hundreds die in Baghdad/a day of bombs and blood 26. Larry C Johnson - How many dead equal a failed government? 27. Norman Solomon - Bowing down to our own violence 28. Sherwood Ross - A glimpse into daily life in Iraq/VA Tech 29. Sunsara Taylor - Iraq to Supreme Court/a new dark ages for women 30. Karen Houppert - Curbing abortion rights 31. Dark Wraith - Abortion wimps 32. ed - Slow motion (poem) --------1 of 32-------- From: wamm <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Palestine 4.20 1:30pm "The Road Map to Where and for What?" Friday, April 20, 1:30 to 4:00 p.m. Hamline University, University Conference Center, 1536 Hewitt Avenue, St. Paul. Jennifer Lowenstein from the University of Wisconsin-Madison will speak on "Gaza Surrealism" and Khaldoun Samman from Macalester College will speak on "Palestine/Israel." Endorsed by: WAMM Middle East Committee. FFI and additional conference events: Call 651-523-2223 or visit <www.hamline.edu/critique>. --------2 of 32-------- From: Nonviolent Peaceforce <melduncan [at] nonviolentpeaceforce.org> Subject: Art for peace 4.20 5pm Nonviolent Peaceforce Presents ART FOR PEACE PREVIEW PARTY View Nell Hillsley's art work online: * Art For Peace Website [http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?t=cw5fa5bab.0.mnugw5bab.m9yf8wbab.8368&ts=S0242&p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.nellhillsley.nonviolentpeaceforce.org%2F] Greetings! Nell Hillsley, an internationally known artist, has donated over 100 pieces of her art work to the Nonviolent Peaceforce. Come and enjoy them. Take home art works from $30-$2000. All the proceeds will go to the Nonviolent Peaceforce. NELL HILLSLEY'S ART FOR PEACE PREVIEW PARTY NellSouthernchildhood [http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?t=cw5fa5bab.0.jpgda5bab.m9yf8wbab.8368&ts=S0242&p=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.nonviolentpeaceforce.org%2F]DATE: Friday, April 20, 2007 TIME: 5pm-8pm Episcopal Cathedral Church of St. Mark 519 Oak Grove Street Minneapolis, 55403 COST: $ 20 per person The show and sale continues free of charge Saturday, April 21, 10am-5pm Sunday, April 22, 8am-2pm --------3 of 32-------- From: Darrell Gerber <darrellgerber [at] earthlink.net> Subject: WasteDump/Somalia 4.20 6:30pm Seeking Environmental Justice: Toxic Waste Dumping in Somalia Presenter, Zainab Hassan April 20, 6:30-8:30 Minneapolis Urban League 2100 Plymouth Ave. N For more information please call: 612-436-5402 This is a free event and food will be served! Zainab Hassan was an Environmental Justice Advocates of Minnesota (EJAM) intern in 2006, as an Upper Midwest Human Rights Fellow. She has been involved with the local Arsenic Triangle campaign in South Minneapolis, and has completed research about toxic waste dumping in Somalia. Ms. Hassan traveled overseas to Rome and Italy to meet with news editors about the hazardous and nuclear waste dumping in Somalia. She also met with the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) in Nairobi, Kenya, and others who have done field work and published reports about the environmental degradation in Somalia. Ms. Hassan, furthermore, traveled to Somalia to collect her own data. She interviewed Somali doctors, and environmental and human rights groups in Somalia. Join us when Ms. Hassan will discuss the findings of her research, "Seeking Environmental Justice: Toxic Waste Dumping in Somalia." Karen Monahan Environmental Justice Organizer Office # 612-436-5402 www.ejamn.org --------4 of 32--------- From: Jim Pounds <jim [at] intermediaarts.org> Subject: Bent festival 4.20 6:30pm Minneapolis, MN . April 2, 2007 - The Tank and Intermedia Arts are pleased to announce BENT 2007: The Fourth Annual Circuit Bending Festival. The term circuit bending refers to the inspired short-circuiting of battery-powered children's toys to create new musical instruments, and over the last few decades a worldwide subculture has sprung up around this amazing art form. We are very excited that for the first time the Bent Bent Festival Minneapolis - April 19-21 2007 Co-Presented by The Tank and Intermedia Arts All workshops and concerts will be held at Intermedia Arts, 2822 Lyndale Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN WORKSHOP SCHEDULE FRIDAY APRIL 20 6:30pm Build the Waldeck Interrupter - The "Waldeck Interrupter," is a very simple to produce, very cool little tool used to check "voltage drain bends" on any battery powered device. The workshop is applicable to beginners and for advanced benders alike. It's a tool that all benders should have in their "kit." Participants should bring an array of devices on which to test their new Interrupter - even if the device is already bent! Note: not all electronics react interestingly to a voltage drain bend. This tool is a good way to find out without having to mess up your battery compartment. SATURDAY APRIL 21 11:00am Intro to Circuit Bending Workshop - FREE and fun for kids of all ages! Circuit bending is a do-it-yourself sound art, which allows one to discover new hidden organic sounds in battery-powered electronic toys recycled from thrift stores and garage sales. In the Introduction to Circuit Bending Workshop participants will learn the fundamentals of circuit bending and have the opportunity to take a hands-on approach to modifying their own electronic devices. Participants are encouraged to bring their own devices for bending; this would include any battery-operated children's toys that make sounds (keyboards, speak and spells, etc). Participants are also encouraged to bring extra batteries to use on their machines. 2:00pm Analogue Drum Machine Hacks and Mods - Participant will learn to modify their 1980's pcm or analog drum machines, with most popular models from Yamaha, Roland, Korg, and Alesis being covered. The demonstration will be performed on a Yamaha RX-21L, with specific instructions given for other models. 4:00pm Build a Parallel Port to Circuit Bent Instrument Interface - This workshop will teach you how to build a computer interface for your bent instruments so that you can trigger your instrument through a simple drum machine like sequencer on your computer. MEDIA CONTACT Mike Rosenthal 212-563-6269 or mike [at] thetanknyc.org http://www.thetanknyc.org --------5 of 32-------- From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Transgender rights 4.20 7pm fri, april 20, 7:30PM:Discussion and Q&A with Paisley Currah, co-editor of Transgender Rights Friday, April 20, 7 p.m. AMAZON BOOKS 4755 Chicago Ave. So. Minneapolis, MN 55407 612-821-9630 Store hours: Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday Noon-5 p.m. While the transgender movement has achieved visibility and victories in the last thirty years, violence and discrimination against transgender people continues to be a significant problem. With analysis from legal and policy experts, activists and advocates, the essays in Transgender Rights bring transgender people's activism into view, articulate the challenges they face, and offer perspectives and strategies for future action. Examining crucial topics like family law, employment policies, public health, economics, and grassroots organizing, this groundbreaking book is an indispensable resource in the fight for the freedom and equality of those who cross gender boundaries. Moving beyond media representations to grapple with the real lives and issues of transgender people, Transgender Rights will launch a new moment for human rights activism in America. Paisley Currah is associate professor of political science at Brooklyn College, executive director of the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies at the CUNY Graduate Center, and a founding board member of the Transgender Law and Policy Institute. --------6 of 32-------- From: wamm <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Rachel Corrie/play 4.20 7:30pm Performance: "Rachel Corrie: A Life for Others" Friday, April 20, 7:30 p.m. Friends Meeting House, 1725 Grand Avenue, St. Paul. Saturday, April 21, 7:30 p.m. St. Joan of Arc Church, 4537 Third Avenue South, Minneapolis. "The War Plays Project" presents a 30-minute play based on the true story of Rachel Corrie, a peace activist who was killed by a bulldozer in the Gaza Strip while trying to stop the demolition of a Palestinian home. Discussion follows. Donations accepted. Created by Frances Ford. Sponsored by: WAMM Middle East Committee. FFI: Call Florence, 651-696-1642. --------7 of 32-------- From: wamm <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Bill alert 4.20 Action Alert: Vigil with the Welfare Rights Committee Friday, April 20, TBA (call 651-296-2146 to find out when he session begins) Minnesota State Capitol, House Chambers, 75 Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, St. Paul. The OMNIBUS Health and Human Service Bill will undo the following; $125.00 cut to families with disabilities (this cut takes $125.00 per month from the MFIP grant if a household member is severely disabled and on SSI), $50.00 cut to families in subsidized housing (families who receive MFIP and live in subsidized housing, section 8, or public housing are having their monthly cash grant cut by $50.00 a month), education in MFIP (this requires that poor single parents work 20 hours a week while they are getting post-secondary education), MA co-pays (this cut targets the poorest of the poor at a time when they are sick and vulnerable and makes it so that people do not get the health care that they need),childcare co-pays (there was some relief in childcare last year, but not to the co-pays that the poorest families pay for childcare). In addition, the proposed bill will give more hardship extensions for families coming up on their 5-year welfare limit. Sponsored by: WRC. FFI: Call 612-822-8020. --------8 of 32-------- From: Joann Perry [mailto:joann [at] black-hole.com] Subject: AVP 4.20 Alternatives to Violence Project Workshop Peacemaking skills, as presented by the Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) workshops consist of games, discussions, and role plays which explore conflict management as a way of life. AVP workshops are presented locally, nationally and internationally in communities, prisons, high schools and where ever leadership requests conflict resolution skills with a spiritual base. AVP training "has been used to reduce violence in Twin Cities' homes and Minnesota prisons, as well as Rwanda, Bosnia, Kenya and the US. Presented by Friends for a Non-Violent World. Training for Facilitators April 20-22nd. Minnesota AVP is sponsored by FNVW. Sliding scale fee - scholarships are available. To register, please call 651-644-5851 or e-mail Aaron at aaron [at] fnvw.org. For more information, please check out our websites: www.fnvw.org <http://www.fnvw.org/> and www.avpusa.org <http://www.avpusa.org/> . --------9 of 32-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Guatamala rights 4.21 10am Saturday, 4/21, 10 to 11:30 am, Guatemala human rights activist Ellen Moore speaks on "Genocide in Guatemala," Resource Center of the Americas, 3019 Minnehaha Ave, Mpls. www.americas.org --------10 of 32-------- From: wamm <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: WAMM garage sale 4.21 10am WAMM Fundraiser: An Upscale Garage Sale at Low Scale Prices Saturday, April 21, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Linden Hills Community Center, 43rd Street and Xerxes Avenue South, Minneapolis. Purchase a variety of items, such as: art, picture frames, china, pottery, linens, silver, new clothing, antiques, new toys, small pieces of furniture, and much more. FFI or to donate items: Call Erica, 612-929-0802 or Sarah, 612-379-4716 . --------11 of 32-------- From: Carole Rydberg <carydberg [at] comcast.net> Subject: NWN4P Minnetonka 4.21 11am NWN4P-Minnetonka demonstration- Every Saturday, 11 AM to noon, at Hwy. 7 and 101. Park in the Target Greatland lot; meet near the fountain. We will walk along the public sidewalk. Bring your own signs. --------12 of 32-------- From: Lennie <major18 [at] comcast.net> Subject: Northtown vigil 4.21 2pm Mounds View peace vigil EVERY SATURDAY from 2-3pm at the at the southeast corner of the intersection of Co. Hwy 10 and University Ave NE in Blaine, which is the northwest most corner of the Northtown Mall area. This is a MUCH better location. We'll have extra signs. Communities situated near the Northtown Mall include: Blaine, Mounds View, New Brighton, Roseville, Shoreview, Arden Hills, Spring Lake Park, Fridley, and Coon Rapids. For further information, email major18 [at] comcast.net or call Lennie at 763-717-9168 --------13 of 32-------- From: wamm <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: WAMM Mayday prep 4.21 2pm WAMM's MayDay Parade Preparation: Sign-Making and Painting Party April 21 and 22, 2:00 p.m. 4354 28th Avenue South (North of Hiawatha), Minneapolis. Put your creativity to work making costumes and props for WAMM's participation in the annual MayDay Parade on Sunday, May 6th. This year we want to announce that it is WAMM's 25th year "Making Waves." If available, please bring clothes to paint in, paint brushes, scissors or a knife to cut cardboard, water-soluable paint for posters (blue, white, silver, or black), cardboard for signs, and clay for masks. Also, please come with ideas for how to put everything together. FFI or to be part of the WAMM MayDay Parade ad hoc committee: Call Ann, 612-790-8598 or email <gannieca [at] yahoo.com>. --------14 of 32-------- From: tom [at] organicconsumers.org Subject: HotDish showdown 4.21 5pm from the Holland Neighborhood Improvement Association Talk is cheap and the proof of NE pride is in the 9x13 pan! If you think you make the best hotdish quit bragging and bring it on - the third annual clash of the NE kitchen titans takes place April 21 at the Firefighters Hall & Museum. NEW! This year's event will feature a JELLO showcase - after all every family has that one recipe - Love it or hate, just bring it. We won't officially be judging jello, but we all know it when we see it! The second Hotdish Revolution, April of 2006, was truly memorable. Residents of Holland, Sheridan, Bottineau, Audubon Park, and St. Anthony West brought their best. The competition was heated and good-hearted, and the judges met the challenge. "Official" crowd estimates put the total number attending at close to 150. This year, a panel of "celebrities" will select the Top Dish in each category. They will also crown one lucky winner as this year's HotDish royal, and that winner's neighborhood will take the honor as champion. Those who attend will select the People's Choice awards in each category by voting with their forks during dinner. Dishes will be entered into one of the following categories: "Spicy" (in quotes as to not exclude those who firmly believe salt and pepper are spicy) Vegetarian Tater tot excellence "I made it" - kids under 16 Darn Good! (if your dish doesn't fit in another category) We will also award prizes for the hotdish with the best name, and the for the most original - think of it like a Miss Congeniality, most-likely-to-succeed deal. Of course you don't need to enter a dish to attend, come for the food, fun, and entertainment. Suggested donation is $5 if you enter a dish, or $10 for adults, kids age 5 - 15 are $5, and kids under age 5 are free. Doors open at 5:00pm for entries, entertainment starts at 5:30pm, then it's dinner at 6:00pm until it's all gone and the accordion player can't take anymore! Details: If you are entering a hotdish into the competition bring it to the Hall between 5 and 5:20pm the day of the event. We will have you fill out a registration slip that asks you to indicate what category you are entering, the list of ingredients in the dish, as well as your name, phone, etc. If you would share the recipe for your dish please bring a copy. We have plans to collect recipes and possibly publish a small cookbook as a fundraiser for HNIA. We have the happy, but slightly nerve wracking feeling that this year's event will be very well attended. So we had to make a few strategic decisions: we are adding more judges - this should help move things along and shorten the gap between hotdish arrival and ringing the dinner bell. Also, the judges will taste no more than 10 entries in each category. So, if any category has more than 10 entries the judges will do an elimination round - we are borrowing this technique from the MN State Fair judges in the Creative Activities building. The judges can eliminate an entry based on general appearance, if needed, in order to reduce the number of entries in a group. Let the Olympics of cream soup begin! --------15 of 32-------- From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Muslims in MN/TV 4.21 8pm TC Department of Peace activists Martin Mohammed and Imam Shiek Sa'ad and Shukri Adan are featured in this program. Don't miss it! Re: 4/21/07 8pm tpt-17 premiere of Muslims in MN We appreciate all of your support for the upcoming Twin Cities Public Television program Muslims in Minnesota that will premiere this coming Saturday at 8pm on tpt's channel 17. I have attached information and also included it in the text below so that you can pass this along to anyone you know who might have interest in watching. Thank you for your support! Twin Cities Public Television invites you to view MUSLIMS IN MN: HOW ARE WE DOING? A discussion on the political, business & community environment for Minnesota Muslims TELEVISION PREMIERE SAT. April 21, 8:00 - 9:00pm On tpt-channel 17 tpt-17, channel 17 can also be seen on: Comcast cable St. Paul, channel 243 Comcast cable Minneapolis, channel 202 Mediacom cable, channel 102 Over-the-air digital receivers, channel 17-2 --------16 of 32-------- From: Eric Angell <eric-angell [at] riseup.net> Subject: Palestine 4.21 9pm Minneapolis Television Network (MTN 17) viewers: "Our World In Depth" cablecasts weekly in Minneapolis on MTN! Households with basic cable can watch. MTN shows are on Channel 17 Saturdays at 9 pm and the following Tuesday at 8 am. Sat, 4/21, 9 pm "Re-framing The Palestinian-Israeli Conflict" Interview of Jeff Halper, Israeli with MN roots, head of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions. Hosted by Karen Redleaf. --------17 of 32-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Gumbleton 4.22 9am Sunday, 4/22, 9 am, peace and justice advocate Bishop Thomas Gumbleton speaks at masses of St Joan of Arc Church, 4537 - 3rd Ave S, Mpls. --------18 of 32-------- From: Alliance for Sustainability <sean [at] afors.org> Subject: EarthDay/StMarks 4.22 10am Earth Day Dean's Forum at St. Marks Episcopal Cathedral, Minneapolis Sunday, April 22, 2007 at 10:00 AM - Event features widely published ecologist, economist, and consultant Terry Gips, co-founder of the Alliance for Sustainability and President of Sustainability Associates, which works with business, government and communities to save money and become socially and environmentally responsible. --------19 of 32-------- From: Alliance for Sustainability <sean [at] afors.org> Subject: EarthDay/arts 4.22 11am Wishes for the Sky: Promises for the Earth Sunday, April 22, 2007 at 11:00 AM - Be a part of this Earth Day arts experience on Harriet Island. A nature-inspired day of wishing and promising, Wishes for the Sky is a contemporary art event that invites everyone to participate in a work of public art. --------20 of 32-------- From: PRO826 [at] aol.com Subject: EarthDay films 4.22 11am CELEBRATE EARTHDAY! With the Climate Crisis Coalition of the Twin Cities on Sunday, April 22nd Film Screening & Discussion: 11:00 am, The Science of Global Warming, A PBS documentary that explains Earth's climate system and how it works. 1:00pm, Global Warming: Bush's Climate of Fear, a BBC documentary on the U.S. governments' suppression of climate science. 3:00pm, The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil, an inspiring documentary on how we can wean our society off of fossil fuels. Acadia Cafe Theatre 1931 Nicollet Ave, Mpls For more info, email _chirstinefrank [at] visi.com_ (mailto:chirstinefrank [at] visi.com) or call 612-879-8937 --------21 of 32-------- From: Carole Rydberg <carydberg [at] comcast.net> Subject: GroundTruth/film 4.22 12:30pm Free screening- 12:30 PM, Sun. April 22nd, The Ground Truth The moving documentary, The Ground Truth, will be presented free of charge at the Ridgedale Library at 12:30 PM on Sunday April 22. It will be shown in the large meeting room on the ground floor of the library at 12601 Ridgedale Drive, Minnetonka, just south of the mall. Hear the true stories of our vets from induction, training, deployment in Iraq, and return to their families ... why they will never be the same, how the system is failing them, and what we can do to help. We owe it to our veterans to hear their stories. Sponsored by NW Neighbors for Peace. For more information contact Gary, nowworldpeace [at] yahoo.com or 612-298-0466. --------22 of 32-------- From: scot b <earthmannow [at] comcast.net> Subject: Stillwater vigil 4.22 1pm A weekly Vigil for Peace Every Sunday, at the Stillwater bridge from 1- 2 p.m. Come after Church or after brunch ! All are invited to join in song and witness to the human desire for peace in our world. Signs need to be positive. Sponsored by the St. Croix Valley Peacemakers. If you have a United Nations flag or a United States flag please bring it. Be sure to dress for the weather . For more information go to <http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/>http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/ For more information you could call 651 275 0247 or 651 999 - 9560 --------23 of 32-------- From: Carole Rydberg <carydberg [at] comcast.net> Subject: InconvenientTruth 4.22 2:15pm In celebration of Earth Day, Sunday April 22, NW Neighbors for Peace is offering a free screening of the award winning documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, at the Ridgedale Library in Minnetonka. The film will begin at 2:15 PM and will be shown in the large meeting room on the first floor of the library, 12601 Ridgedale Drive. Global warming and climate change are factually explained in a way that is compelling as well as entertaining. For more information, contact Gary at nowworldpeace [at] yahoo.com or 612-298-0468. --------24 of 32-------- From: Doris Marquit <marqu001 [at] umn.edu> Subject: UFPJ 4.22 4:15pm Judith LeBlanc, United for Peace & Justice National Co-chair, will meet with local peace activists Sunday, April 22, 4:15-5:30 pm at Mayday Books, 301 Cedar Ave., Minneapolis. Everyone welcome. FFI 612-922-7993. --------25 of 32-------- Hundreds Die in Baghdad A Day of Bombs and Blood By PATRICK COCKBURN CounterPunch April 19, 2007 Yesterday will go down as a day of infamy for Iraqis who are repeatedly told by the US that their security is improving. Almost 200 people were killed on one of the bloodiest days of the four-year-old war, when car bombs ripped through four neighbourhoods across Baghdad, exposing the failure of the two-month-old US security plan. In the aftermath of the blasts, American and Iraqi soldiers who rushed to the scene of the explosions were pelted with stones by angry crowds shouting: "Where is the security plan? We are not protected by this plan." Billowing clouds of oily black smoke rose into the sky over the Iraqi capital after four bombs tore through crowded markets and streets leaving the ground covered in charred bodies and severed limbs. "I saw dozens of dead bodies," said a witness in Sadriyah, a mixed Shia-Kurdish neighbourhood in west Baghdad where 140 people died and 150 were injured. " Some people were burned alive inside minibuses. Nobody could reach them after the explosion. There were pieces of flesh all over the place. Women were screaming and shouting for their loved ones who died." The escalation in devastating bomb attacks by Sunni insurgents against Shia civilians is discrediting the US security plan, implemented by a "surge" in American troop numbers. Launched on 14 February it was intended to give the Iraqi government greater control over the streets of Baghdad. The Mehdi Army Shia militia, blamed for operating death squads against Sunni civilians, had adopted a lower profile and avoided military confrontation with the US but that is unlikely to continue in the wake of these devastating bomb attacks. The Iraqi Prime Minister, Nouri al-Maliki, is seen as being unable to defend his own people. In the aftermath of the explosions, one man waved his arms and shouted angrily: "Where's Maliki? Let him come and see what is happening here." The enraged crowds throwing stones at American and Iraqi troops who arrived after the blasts also shouted: "Down with Maliki." The worst attack was on Sadriyah meat and vegetable market in the centre of Baghdad. It had already been the target of one of Baghdad's worst atrocities when a suicide bomber blew up a Mercedes truck on 3 February, killing 137 people. Some of the casualties yesterday were construction workers rebuilding the marketplace. One of the workers who survived, 28-year-old Salih Mustafa, said he was waiting for a minibus to go home when the bomb went off at 4.05pm. "I rushed with others to give a hand and help the victims," he said. "I saw three bodies in a wooden cart, and civilian cars were helping to transfer the victims. It was really a horrible scene." There is no doubt that the bombs were directed at killing as many Shia civilians as possible. About half an hour before the Sadriyah blast, a suicide bomber had rammed a police checkpoint at the entrance to the great Shia bastion in Sadr City in east Baghdad. It is also the stronghold of the Shia nationalist cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. The explosion killed 35 people and wounded 75, police say. Black smoke rose from blazing vehicles as people scrambled over the twisted wreckage of cars to try to rescue the wounded. In another Shia neighbourhood, Karada, a parked car exploded, killing 10 people and wounding 15. "The problem is that the Shia stopped killing so many Sunni but the Sunni are killing more Shia than ever," said an Iraqi official before the attacks yesterday. He added: "If this goes on, the Shia will exact revenge. Sectarian massacres will dwarf anything we have seen before." The bombings came hours after Mr Maliki said that Iraqi security forces would take full control of the whole country by the end of the year. But last night, amid a torrent of public criticism, the Prime Minister ordered the arrest of the Iraqi army colonel in charge of security around the Sadriyah market. And in another move that could weaken his position further, six ministers supporting Mr Sadr have just withdrawn from the government because of Mr Maliki's failure to demand that the US set a timetable for the withdrawal of its troops. The 17-million strong Shia community, the majority of the Iraqi population, is increasingly hostile to the US presence while the five million Sunni generally support anti- American armed resistance. Only the Kurds fully back the US. Responsibility for security in Maysan province was handed over by Britain to Iraq yesterday. "Then it will be province by province until we achieve [this transfer] before the end of the year," said Mr Maliki in a speech delivered on his behalf by the National Security Adviser, Mowaffaq al-Rubaie. But the transfer of political or security control by the US and Britain to Iraqi authorities has always been deceptive. Iraqis believe, with some reason, that real control remains in the hands of the occupying forces. Earlier in the year, British forces blew up a police headquarters in Basra and US helicopter-borne troops tried to kidnap two senior Iranian officials visiting Jalal Talabani, the Iraqi President. The success of the US security plan in Baghdad depended less on an additional five American brigades than in fostering a belief by Iraqis that it was providing them with security. The Sunni insurgents and Shia militias grew in strength in the Iraqi capital in 2006 because their communities were terrified of bombers, death squads and kidnappers. The US army and Iraqi army and police could only win acceptance if they provided a superior level of security, which they are notably failing to do. "We've always said securing Baghdad would not be easy. We've seen both inspiring progress and too much evidence that we still face many grave challenges," Major-General William Caldwell, a US military spokesman, said. Patrick Cockburn is the author of 'The Occupation: War, resistance and daily life in Iraq', a finalist for the National Book Critics' Circle Award for best non-fiction book of 2006. [If this is OK with you, vote your usual major party -ed] --------26 of 32-------- The Hobbesian Hell of Iraq How Many Dead Equal a Failed Government? By LARRY C. JOHNSON CounterPunch April 19, 2007 What are we to make of the bizarre contrast between our national grief over the terrible slaughter of students and faculty at Virginia Tech and our muted reaction to the continuing bloodbath in and around Baghdad? One mass killing in the 209 years since Virginia Tech was founded is not exactly a trend. It is a terrible thing but not likely to be repeated anytime soon. We cannot say the same about events in Baghdad and Iraq. Just today four separate car bombs in and around Baghdad teft at least 180 Iraqis - mostly Shia - dead. On Tuesday, at least 85 bodies turned up and there were more bombings. Monday was not much better - thirty corpses and at least twenty killed in bombings. Sixty nine plus on Sunday. And the beat goes on. Think about those numbers in relationship to the anger expressed by the public and press because Virginia Tech University officials failed to prevent Monday's massacre. What would we be saying if another shooter showed up at Virginia Tech on Tuesday and killed 20 more students and another shooter bagged an additional 40 on Wednesday? The President of the University would be lynched, the students would arm themselves, and the police would lose any pretense of control. Why do we think Iraqi Shias and Sunnis should react differently then we would? When you consider the events of the last week in Iraq there is no reason any sane Iraqi - Sunni or Shia - would have any confidence in the Petraeus plan. Petraeus and U.S forcecs are in trouble. Desperate trouble. Despite White House flacks and politicians like McCain insisting that things are improving in Baghdad, the continued mass casualty bombings, the stacks of bodies left on the streets, the destruction of key infrastructure (like the Sarafiya bridge), and the bombing of the Iraqi parliament is reality and cannot be casually dismissed as the crazy ravings of a news media intent on reporting bad news. Hell, compare the conduct of reporters operating in the Iraq combat zones with the nonsense being spewed by every network and cable anchor who managed to buy a seat to Blacksburg, Virginia. Not a single news organization operating at Virginia Tech had to contract body guards and armored cars to move around to report the story. The U.S. based media did not have to find a sand bagged roof in the Green Zone as a background shot for their nightly report. They roamed freely without fear. That is not the case in Baghdad specifically and Iraq in general. Despite the surge of U.S. troops into Baghdad the violence continues, especially against the Shia majority. Today's attacks on the Shia, coming on the heels of the resignation of Shia cleric Moqtada al Sadr, are particularly worrisome. No Iraqi Shia with any sense trusts the Maliki government or the Americans to protect them. Do not be too surprised when the Mehdi Army and Badr Militias, two of the most prominent Shia militias, step up attacks in the coming weeks against Sunni targets and U.S. forces. Why U.S. forces? Because many of the Shia, particularly those mourning loved ones murdered in the latest blasts, will be convinced that the U.S. allowed these attacks to take place. How could they think otherwise? The U.S. is a superpower. The U.S. has deployed more troops to Baghdad ostensibly to protect the people. Yet the Shia are dying now in a disproportionate number. The Shia are likely to draw only one conclusion - this is a deliberate policy of the United States to target and kill the Shia. Moqtada al Sadr's recent withdrawal from the Maliki government is fortuitous for him. His folks are not part of the government and cannot be blamed for failing to prevent the latest bloodshed. But they will now be on the scene to offer protection and revenge. If the government cannot protect you and your family then you must do it yourself or back someone who can. In the total scheme of things the horror unfolding in Iraq will affect our nation's security more than a month of Virginia Tech massacres. Yet our attention is riveted on Blacksburg not Baghdad. There are some silver linings. At least the media is covering genuine grief and anguish as opposed to the nonsense of a Don Imus or Anna Nicole Smith. And maybe, just maybe, as we contemplate what it means to mourn the single day massacre of 32 students and faculty at Virginia Tech we will develop an empathy for Iraqis who, today, are mourning the equivalent of five Virgina Techs. But the Iraqis won't sleep tonight with the hope that today's heartache was an aberration. Nope. They wake up each and every day confronting a new horror just as bad as Monday in Blacksburg, Virginia. When government institutions and officials prove incompetent or incapable of protecting citizens it is no shocker that people take matters into their own hands. Welcome to the Hobbesian world of modern Iraq. Larry C. Johnson is a former CIA analyst who blogs at No Quarter. [If this is OK with you, vote your usual major party -ed] --------27 of 32-------- The Media's Chronic Obsessions and Evasions Bowing Down to Our Own Violence By NORMAN SOLOMON CounterPunch April 19, 2007 Several days after the mass killings at Virginia Tech, grisly stories about the tragedy still dominate front pages and cable television. News of carnage on a vastly larger scale - the war in Iraq - ebbs and flows. The overall coverage of lethal violence, at home and far away, reflects the chronic evasions of the American media establishment. In the world of U.S. mainline journalism, the boilerplate legitimacy of official American violence overseas is a routine assumption. "The first task of the occupation remains the first task of government: to establish a monopoly on violence," George Will wrote three years ago in the Washington Post. But now, his latest Newsweek column laments: "Vietnam produced an antiwar movement in America; Iraq has produced an antiwar America." Current polls and public discourse - in spite of media inclinations to tamp down authentic anger at the war - do reflect an "antiwar America" of sorts. So, why is the ghastly war effort continuing unabated? A big factor is the undue respect that's reserved for American warriors in American society. When a mentally unstable person goes on a shooting rampage in the United States, no one questions that such actions are intrinsically, fundamentally and absolutely wrong. The media condemnation is 100 percent. However - even after four years of a U.S. war in Iraq that has been increasingly deplored by the American public - the standard violence directed from the Pentagon does not undergo much critical scrutiny from American journalists. The president's war policies may come under withering media fire, but the daily activities of the U.S. armed forces are subjected to scant moral condemnation. Yet, under orders from the top, they routinely continue to inflict - or serve as a catalyst for - violence far more extensive than the shooting sprees that turned a placid Virginia campus into a slaughterhouse. News outlets in the United States combine the totally proper condemnation of killing at home with a notably different affect toward the methodical killing abroad that is funded by the U.S. Treasury. We often read, see and hear explicit media commendations that praise as heroic the Americans in uniform who are trying to kill, and to avoid being killed, in Afghanistan and Iraq. In recent decades, the trends of war have been clear. A majority of the dead - estimated at 75 to 90 percent - are civilians. They are no less innocent than the more than 30 people who suddenly died from gunshots at Virginia Tech. It would be inaccurate to say that the bulk of U.S. media's coverage accepts war launched from Washington. The media system of the USA does much more than accept - it embraces the high-tech violence under the Pentagon's aegis. Key reasons are cultural, economic and political. We grew up with - and continue to see - countless movies and TV programs showing how certain people with a handgun, a machine gun or missiles are able to set wrongs right with sufficiently deft and destructive violence. The annual reports of large, medium and small companies boast that the U.S. Defense Department is a lucrative customer with more and more to spend on their wares for war. And the scope of political discourse, reinforced by major news outlets, ordinarily remains narrow enough to dodge the huge differences between "defense spending" and "military spending." More broadly, the big media rarely explore the terrain of basic moral challenges to the warfare state. Everyone who isn't deranged can agree that what happened on April 16, 2007, at the campus of Virginia Tech was an abomination. It came about because of an individual's madness. We must reject it without the slightest equivocation. And we do. But the media baseline is to glorify the U.S. military - yesterday, today and tomorrow - bringing so much bloodshed to Iraq. The social dynamics in our own midst, fueling the war effort, are spared tough scrutiny. We're constantly encouraged to go along, avidly or passively. Yet George Will has it wrong. The first task of government should not be "to establish a monopoly on violence." Government should work to prevent violence - including its own. Norman Solomon is the author of War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death. [If this is OK with you, vote your usual major party -ed] --------28 of 32-------- A Momentary Glimpse into Daily Life in Iraq Massacre at Va Tech By SHERWOOD ROSS CounterPunch April 18, 2007 At the memorial ceremony for those slain at Virginia Tech, President Bush said today he did not know what the victims had done to deserve their fate. How this nation wept as one when thirty innocent Americans perished and twenty more were wounded! There is almost nothing else on the television news but this tragedy - not even news from the ongoing slaughter from the war in Iraq. Here we have the sorry spectacle of the man in the White House who made the war on Iraq, where a disaster comparable to the Virginia Tech massacre occurs four or five times a day every day, leading the nation in prayer! Yet when does this man go on television to ask the American people to pray for the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis who have been murdered in the illegal war he launched? And just as the students and teachers who perished at the hands of a crazed killer on the Virginia Tech campus had done nothing to deserve their fate, neither have the people of Iraq committed any crime to endure the unendurable they are suffering at the hands of a president who professed to be "horrified" at the events on a peaceful campus. If a South Korean student is regarded as a berserk killer for murdering thirty people what is President Bush, whose invasion to control oil-rich Iraq has cost nearly three quarters of a million lives, created four million refugees, and plunged the Middle East into turmoil? The American people, including the families of the murdered Virginia Tech innocents, have collective blood-guilt on their hands. I have not gone to jail to protest the war machine, so I am no better than they and probably a good deal worse because I have given the issue some thought. How many of those parents in the audience hearing the President's words had elected to Congress men and women who voted for lax laws on gun ownership? How many of those parents in the audience had also voted for legislators who backed the president's illegal invasion of Iraq? Are we, as a nation, too obtuse to grasp the connection between our "gun culture" policy at home and our militarist policy abroad that murders and mutilates human beings at every turn? Practically any one in America can buy a gun, and abroad, any dictator in the world can buy weapons made in America because we just happen to be the world's biggest arms peddler. What kind of a society has America become? Why do we have two-million men in our prisons? Why, in some cities, is every second or third male either in prison or out on parole? Why is the murder rate soaring in so many cities? Why is there on average more than one killing a day in a city like Philadelphia? Why are our own terrorists murdering 30,000 Americans each year and injuring tens of thousands more with rapid-fire handguns of the sort used on the Virginia Tech campus? Do we realize, speaking of terrorists, that ten times as many Americans are being killed by Americans each year as all our troops in Iraq? Osama bin Laden is everywhere in America. He has a thousand faces. They are the faces of our own dispossessed, our own poverty-stricken, our own unemployed, our own underclass, our own idolized gangsters, our own youth who grew up in front of television sets that ooze violence and blood. Who is responsible for the killings in Iraq except the same now bereaved parents of the murdered students at Virginia Tech? It's not that some of them voted to elect George Bush. Anyone can be deceived, particularly by a notorious liar. But when the president broke the law and invaded Iraq, violating the UN Charter, how many of them protested? Today they are upset that a young, crazed gunman has ran amok on the campus of a peaceful university, but where were they when President Bush defied the United Nations and ran amok in Iraq? Do they know, as Amnesty International reported on the same day as the Virginia Tech murders, the Middle East "is on the verge of a massive humanitarian crisis" because three-million Iraqis have been "forcibly displaced" by the war the grief-stricken Mr. Bush began? Who do the American people think made this humanitarian crisis in the Middle East if not the American people? The same parents who weep for their children might consider that they and their neighbors are also spending a half trillion dollars a year so that the Pentagon, just over the horizon from Virginia Tech, can wage a war that is snuffing out the lives of children of other parents just like their own. Thousands of Virginians work for the military-industrial complex. They work for the Pentagon. They work for defense contractors. They work for the Central Intelligence Agency. They are in the business of killing directly or indirectly, yet how many of them are haunted by the consequences of their "jobs" in their dreams at night? All across America, people who attend church and regard themselves as "good" people, such as the bereaved at Virginia Tech, are working in the plants that make atomic bombs and warplanes and napalm and cluster bombs and are creating new, demonical designs of germ warfare and space-based weapons so vile and horrible they defy description. America as a nation has become an organized nightmare. Yesterday, the nation woke up to the pain of the kind of killing it has been inflicting widely around the world since its fleets of bombers roared out to destroy Dresden, since it leveled Hiroshima and Nagasaki, since it laid waste to Vietnam, since it overthrew Chile, and now since it has invaded two Middle Eastern nations in its thirst for oil. Yes, weep for the innocent victims of Virginia Tech, who only wanted to study and live in peace. But weep also, America, for the people of Iraq! If President Bush cared as much for them as he cares for his own, he would have to hold four news conferences a day. He would never stop grieving. Sherwood Ross is a Miami-based columnist. For comments or to arrange for speaking engagements contact him at sherwoodr1 [at] yahoo.com. [If this is OK with you, vote your usual major party -ed] --------29 of 32-------- From Iraq to the Supreme Court A New Dark Ages for Women By SUNSARA TAYLOR CounterPunch April 19, 2007 "The Supreme Court's decision is an affirmation of the progress we have made over the past six years in protecting human dignity." -- George W. Bush praising the Supreme Court decision to uphold the ban on dilation and extraction abortions, August 18, 2007 "What does that mean, 'outrages upon human dignity'?" -- George W. Bush lashing out against the Geneva Conventions and demanding that Congress remove legal obstacles to torture, September 6, 2006 In an act of perverse dishonesty, Bush claimed the war on Iraq would liberate women. In reality, it has visited the stench of death upon the birth wards, the bedrooms of children, and the daily routines of women as well as men throughout Iraq. In the post-Sadam central power vacuum, Sharia law is flourishing, forcing women under the hijab, fostering "honor killings" and filling the morgues with growing numbers of women's bodies bearing signs of rape, sexual mutilation and torture. A dark curtain is being curtain being pulled over the schools that once served girls and dreams of equality are being snuffed out. Here at home, George Bush's claim to support the liberation of women is more shameless hypocrisy. Speaking sanctimoniously about the "value" of fetal tissue, Bush has overseen the most aggressive and cruel assault on women's fundamental rights and the fostering of an openly patriarchal culture. Yesterday's Supreme Court decision, which Bush heralded, criminalized the abortion procedure scientifically known as dilation and extraction (and manipulatively labeled "partial birth abortion" by anti-choice fanatics) and was written so vaguely that it could be used to ban the most common abortion procedure used by women after the first trimester. It is a law that lays the basis to begin sending the courageous doctors who provide women abortion procedures - often at the risk of death - to prison. And, in a situation where lack of abortion access is beginning to drive women to seek illegal abortions, this new law is a five ton weight pressed down on women's lives already stalked by brutality, degradation, and endless insults large and small. It is not only a new legal precedent along the way towards outlawing abortion it is also red meat thrown to a hungry movement of Christian fascists determined to end not only abortion, but also birth control and any kind of independence of women. If women are not free to decide for themselves without shame and without apology when and whether they will become mothers, they cannot be free. If women are not free, then no one can be free. Although the forms of the oppression of women in this country are today different, this Christian fascist movement in the U.S. is the near twin of the movements imposing Sharia law in Iraq, only it is far more powerful given that it is embedded within the ruling elites of the world's only superpower. It is rooted in a literal interpretation of a scripture every bit as brutal as the Q'uran - biblical scripture that casts child-bearing as the only way women can be redeemed for their alleged "original sin": "For Adam was first formed, then Eve; and Adam was not beguiled, but the woman being beguiled hath fallen into transgression: but she shall be saved through her child-bearing." (1 Timothy 2:13-15) This movement has initiative in the ruling class today. On a world scale the future for women - HALF OF HUMANITY - is in grave danger. This is not the time for putting ones hopes into a political process that has done nothing but facilitate and legitimate the invasion, occupation, continued occupation and now possible widening of the war on Iraq in the face of massive public opposition. Now is not the time for resting the future of women's control of their own destiny in the same political process that has facilitated and legitimated the chipping away of abortion, clinic closing by clinic closing, law by law, and judicial nominee by judicial nominee. This is not a time for turning one's energies towards '08 and the slate of Democratic Party hopefuls which have ceded the moral high ground on abortion to religious fanatics and refused to demand an end to colonial occupation of Iraq. This is not a time for remaining polite, being patient, or seeking "common ground." The Bush administration - and the imperialist system it is a product of - have no claim to any moral high ground in regard to women's lives or in regard to human dignity. With their wars of aggression, their torture, and their frontal assault on the lives of women, this is a time when the direction they are dragging the world in must be resisted. Fiercely. And urgently. This is a time when Bush must be impeached and his whole direction must be reversed. And this is a time when everyone seriously concerned about women, here and around the world, must look deeper to see how the oppressive, exploitative, and brutal conditions for women are deeply rooted not only in thousands of years of tradition's chains but also in the basic relations, structures, and institutions of "modern" capitalist society. As Bob Avakian has written, "The oppression of women is completely bound up with the division of society into masters and slaves, exploiters and exploited, and the ending of all such conditions is impossible without the complete liberation of women. All this is why women have a tremendous role to play not only in making revolution but in making sure there is all-the-way revolution." For all those who thought "they would never outlaw abortion" let this be our final, sobering wake-up call. Let it be said that this was the Supreme Court decision was the final straw after which a powerful resistance rose. For all those heartsick after four years of unjust war, let us shake off passivity and complicity and prepare for struggle. For all those who dream of a better world, break the chains! Unleash the fury of women as a mighty force for revolution! Sunsara Taylor writes for Revolution Newspaper and sits on the Advisory Board of The World Can't Wait Drive Out the Bush Regime. She can be reached at: sunsarasworld [at] yahoo.com [Anyone upset enough to DO something? Or do we just sit, mesmerized by evil? -ed] --------30 of 32-------- Curbing Abortion Rights by KAREN HOUPPERT The Nation [posted online on April 18, 2007] Today the Supreme Court ruled in a 5-to-4 decision that a nationwide ban on so-called "partial birth" abortions was legal. Significantly, this is the first time the Court has intervened to this extent on the medical procedures used in abortion - as opposed to issues of public funding and parental notification, which had littered its docket in the past. The decision has been a major blow to abortion rights activists, who, although they are not surprised by the decision given the conservative majority on the bench today, remain dismayed by the implications. "This is an invitation for states to pass further restrictions on abortion," National Abortion Federation president and CEO Vicki Saporta told The Nation. "Most troubling, it undermines the core principles of Roe v. Wade by not putting women's health first." The Supreme Court decision upholds the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act that Congress passed in 2003 and makes it criminal for physicians to perform abortions using "dilation and extraction," a procedure that is used for late-term abortions. The law makes exceptions for the life, but not the health, of the mother. "If there are any medical uncertainties, this law gives the benefit of the doubt to politicians, not physicians," says Saporta. "And that's plainly and simply not good for women's health." The Court struck down a similar state ban on "partial birth" abortions in 2000 - but with a different Court makeup. In today's case, three appellate courts had ruled that the law was unconstitutional before it came to the Supreme Court, with the US District Court of Northern California insisting that the law made criminals of physicians "during virtually all abortions performed after the first trimester." In fact, 85 percent to 90 percent of the roughly 1.3 million abortions performed each year in the United States occur in the first trimester. But the remaining 10 percent have been increasingly difficult for women to procure, as fewer physicians are trained in the late-term procedures and fewer hospitals and clinics are willing to provide them. This new ban is expected to hit older women and teens hardest: older women because they don't often get amniocentesis results until well into their pregnancies, and teens because they are notoriously reluctant to tell their parents they're pregnant until it is nearly obvious. As predicted, the President's appointment of Chief Justice John Roberts has helped advance the "prolife" agenda despite the fancy footwork Roberts displayed during confirmation hearings in September 2005, when he assured senators that he respected Court precedent, was "not an ideologue" and - to the dismay of some conservatives - indicated that he "respected the right to privacy" (key words in the abortion battle). Conservatives need not have worried their purty little heads: This decision, in which newcomers Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito joined the majority, ignores thirty years of precedent, marches lockstep with a prolife plan to chip away at women's reproductive rights and throws privacy rights out the window. A decade ago, when prolifers were making their first forays into this territory - naming the procedure "partial birth" abortion and introducing the idea in a few conservative states - they argued that those pregnant, promiscuous teens who couldn't fit into prom dresses would simply slip out and get this type of late-term abortion. In graphic detail, prolife activists explained how a fetus has its skull crushed to fit through the birth canal in this particular procedure and provided gory photos to hammer home their point. Today, they've refined their methods a bit and tend, when arguing, to remind opponents that there are still alternative methods for late-term abortions. That's when they invoke language like "dismembering the baby piece by piece within the mother's womb" - a worrisome description that seems to be laying the groundwork for their next area of attack. All of this is going exactly according to the Prolife Master Plan: Standing no chance of an outright ban on abortion, prolifers aim to strip women's reproductive rights one "ban" at a time. Americans United for Life, one of the oldest prolife groups in the country, puts it quite clearly in its mission statement: "If we are to prevail in our secular culture, we must reach out to address the practical concerns of ambivalent Americans. We must address our culture as it is and not as we would like it to be. With a steady eye toward the mark and the support of people of and for life, we are confident that a renewed culture of life is within our reach." Today, the organization is doubtless preparing to anoint as saints Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito. --------31 of 32-------- dark-wraith.com blog Quoth the Dark Wraith Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has taken its first stab at what will eventually be the end of abortion rights in this country, maybe we ought to reflect for a minute on all those Democrats in the Senate last year who were too cowardly to filibuster the nominations of Justices Samuel Alito and John Roberts. Any backbone those Senators are currently displaying will not change the fact that the rights of every American are ultimately now in the hands of Right-wing religious extremists and will remain in those nasty clutches for a generation to come. Thank you, Democratic Senators, one and all. You spineless assholes. [Amen. -ed] --------32 of 32-------- The US under the ruling class: slow motion to the gas chambers. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- - David Shove shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu rhymes with clove Progressive Calendar over 2225 subscribers as of 12.19.02 please send all messages in plain text no attachments
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