Progressive Calendar 08.15.10
From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)
Date: Sun, 15 Aug 2010 16:35:46 -0700 (PDT)
             P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R   08.15.10

1. Net neutrality    8.16 9am
2. Femme film fest   8.16 11:30am
3. Peace walk        8.16 6pm RiverFalls WI

4. Erlinder/Congo    8.17 6:30pm

5. Alliant vigil     8.18 7am
6. Mid East peace    8.18 8am
7. Eagan peace vigil 8.18 4:30pm
8. Northtown vigil   8.18 5pm
9. Wilder/elderly    8.18 6pm
10. Bacevich/empire  8.18 7:30pm

11. Ian Hoffmann       - Still P-9 proud
12. Margaret Kimberley - Public theft and the decline of empire
13. Alexander Cockburn - America enters a new time
14. Anthony DiMaggio   - Israel lies, civilians die
15. Missy Beattie      - Uncle Moneybags needs you - to kill and die
16. ed                 - Red  (haiku)
17. ed                 - Brown  (haiku)

--------1 of 17--------

From: TruthToTell <andydriscoll [at] truthtotell.org>
Subject: Net neutrality 8.16 9am

Tune in every Monday 9:00am to 10:00am on KFAI
TTT MON. Aug 16-9:00AM: FCC Comes to Town: Thursday Hearing on Net
     Affordability - KFAI-90.3/106.7/Streamed @ KFAI.org

From Free Press.net:
"The FCC recently announced that up to 24 million Americans don't have
access to broadband. The exclusion of millions of people from the defining
technology of our time only widens the existing gulf between those that
have and those that don't. Everyday people like you and me must have a
voice in shaping the future of the Internet. This hearing will give
members of the public the chance to communicate their ideas, experiences
and concerns directly to the commissioners." - amalia deloney, grassroots
policy director for the Center for Media Justice.

A recent court decision left the FCC's authority over Internet providers
in legal limbo. Without this authority, the agency cannot protect Net
Neutrality, the principle that guarantees free speech online, and cannot
ensure that every American has access to affordable broadband service. In
a recent speech, Minnesota Sen. Al Franken called Net Neutrality "the free
speech issue of our time.

The FCC will Hear from Minnesotans on Future of Internet Thursday, Aug 19¬
at Minneapolis' South High School. TruthToTell's ANDY DRISCOLL and LYNNELL
MICKELSEN¬ explore the issues and testimony Minnesota media justice types
will deliver to Federal Communications Commissioners Michael Copps and
Mignon Clyburn at a hearing on the future of the Internet.

GUESTS:
STEVE¬ RENDEROS - Media Justice Coordinator,¬ Main Street Project
MARGARET KAPLAN -Operations Director, MN Center for Neighborhood
Organizing (CURA)
CHAKA MKALI¬ - Director of Organizing and Community Building, Hope
Community, Minneapolis
LAURA WATERMAN WITTSTOCK - Author, Consultant, Co-Producer/Host - First
Person Radio (KFAI)

CivicMedia MN | 835 Linwood Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55105 | Phone:
651-293-9039


--------2 of 17--------

From: Erin Parrish <erin [at] mnwomen.org>
Subject: Femme film fest 8.16 11:30am

August 16 - 20: Minnesota Women's Consortium Feminist Film Festival in
honor of Women's Equality Day on August 26. The films we show depict
feminist concepts or characters. Bring your lunch and a friend. Popcorn
will be provided. All films will be shown at 11:30 AM at the Minnesota
Women's Building, 550 Rice Street, St. Paul. Aug. 16: Girls Rock. Aug. 17:
Itty Bitty Titty Committee. Aug. 18: Amreeka. Aug. 19: Princess Mononoke.
Aug. 20: Whip It. See previews at EqualityQuilt.


--------3 of 17--------

From: Nancy Holden <d.n.holden [at] comcast.net>
Subject: Peace walk 8.16 6pm RiverFalls WI

River Falls Peace and Justice Walkers. We meet every Monday from 6-7 pm on
the UWRF campus at Cascade Ave. and 2nd Street, immediately across from
"Journey" House. We walk through the downtown of River Falls. Contact:
d.n.holden [at] comcast.net. Douglas H Holden 1004 Morgan Road River Falls,
Wisconsin 54022


--------4 of 17--------

From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at] mtn.org>
Subject: Erlinder/Congo 8.17 6:30pm

Pax Conversational Salon: Talk by Peter Erlinder on the Congo
Tuesday, August 17, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Mad Hatter's Tea House, 943 West
Seventh, St. Paul.

Join others at a talk by Peter Erlinder, who will speak on the events in
the Congo and their meaning. There are 10 million dead and counting.
Endorsed by: WAMM. FFI: Call 651-227-3228.


--------5 of 17--------

From: AlliantACTION <alliantaction [at] circlevision.org>
Subject: Alliant vigil 8.18 7am

Join us Wednesday morning, 7-8 am
Now in our 14th year of consecutive Wednesday
morning vigils outside Alliant Techsystems,
7480 Flying Cloud Drive Eden Prairie.
We ask Who Profit$? Who Dies?
directions and lots of info: alliantACTION.org


--------6 of 17--------

From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at] mtn.org>
Subject: Mid East peace 8.18 8am

Dialogue with Reverend Philip Wheaton: "No Peace in the Middle East is
Possible (Without Unmasking the Lies and Telling the Truth)"
Wednesday, August 18, 8:00 to 9:30 a.m. Holy Trinity Lutheran Church,
2130 East 31st Street, Minneapolis.

The Reverend Philip Wheaton, an Episcopal priest in Washington DC, has
served as a missionary in Latin America and as the director of the
Ecumenical Program for Interamerican Communication and Action (EPICA) with
the Latin American Department of the National Council of Churches. He is
also a theologian of liberation and author of many books, including
Flowering of the Prophetic Word in the Americas. Born and raised in
Minneapolis and a graduate of the University of Minnesota, Wheaton is an
ecumenist and interfaith Christian and is presently co-pastor of an
ecumenical congregation in Washington, D.C. He is a good friend of Naim
Stifan Ateek, head of the Sabeel Center in Jerusalem. Cost: $5.00 includes
light meal. Sponsored by: Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. Endorsed by: WAMM.
FFI: Visit www.htlcmpls.org.


--------7 of 17--------

From: Greg and Sue Skog <family4peace [at] msn.com>
Subject: Eagan peace vigil 8.18 4:30pm

PEACE VIGIL EVERY THURSDAY from 4:30-5:30pm on the Northwest corner of
Pilot Knob Road and Yankee Doodle Road in Eagan. We have signs and
candles. Say "NO to war!" The weekly vigil is sponsored by: Friends south
of the river speaking out against war.


--------8 of 17--------

From: EKalamboki [at] aol.com
Subject: Northtown vigil 8.18 5pm

NORTHTOWN Peace Vigil every Thursday 5-6pm, at the intersection of Co. Hwy
10 and University Ave NE (SE corner across from Denny's), in Blaine.

Communities situated near the Northtown Mall include: Blaine, Mounds View,
New Brighton, Roseville, Shoreview, Arden Hills, Spring Lake Park,
Fridley, and Coon Rapids.  We'll have extra signs.

For more information people can contact Evangelos Kalambokidis by phone or
email: (763)574-9615, ekalamboki [at] aol.com.


--------9 of 17--------

From: Erin Parrish <erin [at] mnwomen.org>
Subject: Wilder/elderly 8.18 6pm

August 18: Community Services for the Elderly, Wilder Foundation support
group for adult children caring for aging parents. Meet with a licensed
social worker and others who share the challenge of caring for aging
parents and learn how to work with your family to make good decisions,
develop caregiving skills, and find resources that will make everybody's
life more manageable. The group meets the third Wednesday of each month
from 6 - 7:30 PM at Wilder Center, 451 N. Lexington in St. Paul. Free
parking. Refreshments served. No registration required. Free of charge.
For more information call Barb Cooley, LSW at 651-280-2538.


--------10 of 17--------

From: Gary Carlson <gcarlso5 [at] hotmail.com>
Subject: Bacevich/empire 8.18 7:30pm

Andrew Bacevich, perhaps my favorite analyst of war and empire, will be
here as shown below. He will be reading from Washington Rules.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
7:30-8:30pm
Reading and Signing
Magers & Quinn
3038 Hennepin Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55408


--------11 of 17--------

From: Ian Hoffmann <p9proud [at] gmail.com>
Subject: Still P-9 Proud

I wanted to make sure you knew about this event next weekend. Ryan Chegwin
of MAPe has sent the following:

Greetings:
Next Saturday August 21st some of us are going down to Austin, MN to take
part in the 25thAnniversary of the famed 1985 P9 strike. We are
considering trying to get a caravan going, leaving Mayday Books in
Minneapolis around 11:30am next Saturday. The event begins at 2:00pm and
will include well-known speakers and a meal at the American Legion Hall.
Speakers include Peter Rachleff, Pete Winkles, Roy Rogers, and Jim
Guyette. It should be a good occasion and a chance to mingle with
activists from other unions and community organizations.

If anyone is interested please let me know or contact the organizer Ian
Hoffman at 917-369-0482 or P9Proud [at] gmail.com. Feel free to pass along this
information to anyone and suggest to other groups that you think might be
interested

Thanks In Solidarity, Ryan Chegwin
RyanNMN [at] aol.com 612-210-4064
or
Ian Hoffman, organizer
P9Proud [at] gmail.com
917-369-0482


--------12 of 17--------

Public Theft and the Decline of Empire
America on the Precipice
By MARGARET KIMBERLEY
August 13 - 15, 2010
CounterPunch

Americans are a people living on the precipice of economic disaster, both
as individuals and as a group. The continued precariousness of their
situation is a direct result of government connivance in stripping them of
public assets and the distribution of those assets to the corporate
sector. Retired public employees are literally having money they earned
stolen from them. Children are losing days in public schools and counties
are eliminating public transportation because political leaders are firmly
committed to expanding empire abroad, assisting rapacious individuals and
corporations at home and keeping workers and people of color in their
place.

All of these examples of public theft mean that America's demise is real
and becoming more and more obvious by the day. It is no longer a subject
of conjecture among a small group of well informed people. When the state
of Hawaii reduces the number of days students will attend public school
and Utah proposes eliminating the 12th grade altogether, the destruction
of our society is plain for all to see.

The American empire has reached its military apex, with troops stationed
in more than 100 countries, and two wars of occupation which have lasted
for more than eight years. The height of brute force brings with it the
nadir of support for human needs. The two conditions go hand in hand. It
is impossible to sustain military spending which exceeds that of every
other country on earth combined, without also stealing from the public.

Camden, New Jersey proposes closing its three-branch public library system
entirely. The $1 million needed to keep it operating every year is a
proverbial drop in the bucket in comparison with the bail out of the
financial services industry and the cost of foreign occupation and mass
death. If public schools and libraries are no longer sacrosanct, if they
can be eliminated without protest, then this country has at last shed any
pretense of being a democratic, civilized society.

The stated reason for the elimination of these services is budget
shortfalls. There is no disputing that states and local governments are
suffering from the revenue losses created by the "great recession". What
should be disputed is the only remedy offered: continued robbing of the
have nots in order to benefit the haves. In Colorado, retired state
employees have been told that cost of living increases will be cut in the
future. These retirees are not covered by Social Security and are entirely
dependent upon the agreement the state of Colorado has made with them over
many years.

According to the Pew Center on the States, states face a $1 trillion gap
in pension funding. So far the only solutions presented involve reneging
on the promises made to working people. Neither the Republican nor
Democratic parties have suggested redirecting public funds from the
military industrial complex to bail out the states and the people served
by them. Defense appropriations and corporate bailouts continue in the
absence of any meaningful debate.

When Clayton County, Georgia does away with its bus service and Boulder,
Colorado decides not to light its streets at night, the veneer of a social
contract is gone for good and the decline of the United States is visible
to all. The exact how and why of America's ultimate decline is unknown.
What is clear is that the continued supremacy of the ruling class will
make the lives of millions of people a living hell before the shoe finally
drops.

It is truly chilling to contemplate the various ways in which our lives
can worsen. Debtors prisons have returned, in the form of greedy lenders
taking debtors to court and jailing those who don't realize the importance
of showing up. Questionable loans are bought and sold to squeeze the last
dime out of working people unaware that there are statutes of limitation
on debt collection.

The first step in fighting back against this onslaught is the realization
that America is A, an empire, and B, on the downward slope of something
bigger than a U or V shaped recession. We aren't fighting just against
Republicans and Democrats who won't save us unless forced to do so. The
contradictions inherent in our system have finally finished it off and we
are all caught in its death throes. When we organize it must be because we
realize the enormity of our situation. Yes, we must fight against
gentrification and war and we must fight for environmental sustainability.
Yet none of those desired outcomes will ever come to pass unless we know
precisely what we are up against.

We are up against an empire which like its predecessors will not go
quietly. They never do, but they can be beaten and real civilization can
be saved if we acknowledge who and what we are fighting.


--------13 of 17--------

America Enters a New Time
By ALEXANDER COCKBURN
CounterPunch
August 13 - 15, 2010

I went to get my hair cut the other day in the town of Fortuna and waited
ten minutes when the elderly barber finished buzz-cutting a young Mexican
American. After the young man had exited under his thin skullcap of black
stubble, Don the barber sighed and said, "That's the third boy I've cut
today who's headed into the Marines. They all say the same thing.
'There's no work around here and I've got a family to support'. When I
tell them to hold off, they say the same thing: 'Too late. I've signed
up'".

This is Humboldt county, northern California, where the marijuana boom is
in its final paroxysms, with people flocking from around the world to get
a piece of the action, just like they did in the Gold Rush. One of the
many places selling bags of good soil to marijuana growers ($10 a bag, 8
bags to each marijuana plant, grown in a 100 foot x 30 foot plastic
greenhouse, $25,000 or so) had a $300,000 day lately. So there's more
money here than most places across America, where the situation is truly
desperate.

Profits are up 41 percent since Obama's election; yet half of American
workers have suffered a job loss or a cut in hours or wages over the past
30 months. They're saying around 28 million people either have no job or
one that doesn't yield them enough money to get through the week. On
Friday, August 13, the Bureau of Labor Statistic noted on its home page
that "Employers initiated 1,851 mass layoff events in the second quarter
of 2010 that resulted in the separation of 338,064 workers from their jobs
for at least 31 days".

Millions are plummeting into total destitution, having reached the end of
their 99-weeks of unemployment benefits. Their only option then is the
soup line at a church and getting on he waiting list for a shelter. The
nearest big city north of me is Portland, Oregon, adjacent to the
CounterPunch co-editor bunker in Oregon City of Jeffrey St Clair. The
downtown area in Portland is filled with homeless people, napping on
steps, bedding down on cardboard in doorways. Jeffrey kayaks frequently
down the Willamette and can see colonies of the destitute all along the
river bank, from the shipyards to Willamette Falls, sleeping under thin
plastic and grey skies.

California agriculture and much of the construction industry depends on
undocumented workers coming across the border from Mexico - minimum cost
$1000 - for an 8-day walk through the Arizona desert. Since building is in
a terminal slump, many Mexicans would like to head back home till times
improve, but nowadays it's so tough to come back across, that they daren't
risk it. Hence the paradox: trying to lock "illegals" out means locking
them in. Frank Bardacke who lives in the farm town of Watsonville, a
couple of hours south of San Francisco, recently described amid an
important piece in our newsletter a bank robbery by one young, desperate
immigrant.

"Several months ago," Frank writes, "Jario took his father's pickup truck,
drove 20 miles to the upscale tourist playpen Carmel By the Sea, and
walked into the local branch of the Bank of America. He waited in line to
see a teller, and, when his turn came, he pretended to have a gun under
his shirt and quietly demanded that the teller give him her cash. As she
was passing out the money, he apologized for frightening her; meanwhile,
she was hiding a GPS device among the bills.

"He left the bank, his crime apparently unnoticed, and returned to the
truck for the drive home. On the way, he got confused and took a wrong
turn through Monterey before he got back on the right road home. Twenty
police cars from four different police jurisdictions followed the GPS
signal and stopped him 45 minutes after he left the bank. He immediately
confessed, explaining that he needed the money to help his dad pay the
family mortgage. When his case came to trial, the DA pressed for two years
in State Prison. The judge decided that six months in the county jail and
five years probation would be enough".

In Texas or anywhere in the South the fellow would probably have got 25
years. But in desperate times one can expect people to do desperate,
stupid things, and this decent judge showed compassion and understanding.
One can't say the same for many Americans, starting with the Republicans
in Congress who've been happily voting for a cut-off in benefits for the
jobless, while simultaneously engaging in the politically insane
enterprise of repealing the 14th Amendment, no longer making it a
constitutional provision that those "born or naturalized in the United
States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United
States". Do the Republicans want to cede Texas and Florida permanently to
the Democrats?

Conspicuous good works are always a feature of Depression, the rich
zealous to purchase moral insurance. Some billionaires, led by Warren
Buffett and Bill Gates, have been pledging that they will earmark not less
than 50 per cent of their personal wealth for charity. But since whatever
they give away is tax deductible, so revenues to Uncle Sam will drop.

The rich don't get to be rich by being the nicest guys in the shark tank.
As Carl Ginsburg recently remarked in a fine piece on this site, "In its
fledgling years, profits on Bill Gates' software were reportedly 70 per
cent annually. Another way to gauge Gates's billions is by catching a
glimpse of the multitudes of students priced out of the computer market -
thanks in part to that Great Giver's expensive software - lined up daily
at community college libraries for some free access to computers, each
machine an expression of Gates' creative commitment to profit in the +40
percent range - a gift Gates gave himself that keeps on giving. As Gates
told Fortune: "The diversity of American giving is part of its beauty".

We can probably expect more laid-off workers going postal, as David Rosen
discussed here on our site last week. On August 3, at seven am, Omar
Thornton showed up for a disciplinary hearing at the Hartford
Distributors, a Budweiser distribution warehouse in Manchester,
Connecticut. Thornton had been caught on video pinching some beer. They
asked him whether he wanted to be fired, or just quit. Thornton pulled out
a handgun and killed seven fellow employees before shooting himself dead.
Before he loosed off his last shot into his head, Thornton, a black man,
called a friend on his cellphone and said he's taken care of some racists
who'd been giving him a hard time. Unemployment means fear and fear
nourishes racism, all the more because we have a black president. Racism
is drifting across America like mustard gas in the trenches in World War
One.

And, final token of hard times, we have Bonnie and Clyde on the run. In
their latest guise the duo consists of John McCluskey and his cousin and
fiancee, Casslyn Welch, who's no Faye Dunaway. She threw some wire cutters
over the fence of her man's Arizona prison. Cops suspect them of killing a
couple of retirees, then stealing their truck and heading north up to the
Canadian line through Glacier National Park. That's the last sanctuary in
America of Ursus horribilis, the American grizzly. Behind them the cops,
ahead the bears. It could be the first movie of a new time.


--------14 of 17--------

Israel Lies, Civilians Die
Flotilla Violence Expected
By ANTHONY DiMAGGIO
CounterPunch
August 13 - 15, 2010

Recent revelations from the Israeli government reveal that the Gaza
flotilla raid was an act of premeditated violence, planned weeks prior to
the raid, in that it was understood in advance that it would provoke a
violent counter-response.  This finding, recently reported by Al Jazeera
stands in marked contrast to claims from Israeli leaders at the time of
the raid that the violence directed at activists was purely reactionary
and in self-defense against violent attacks from the flotilla activists
themselves.

Israel's Defense Minister, Ehud Barak, now admits that the violence
related to the deaths of nine pro-Palestinian Turkish activists in May
2010 - was "expected" by Israeli leaders weeks ahead of the actual raid.
He granted this admission during an Israeli commission set up to determine
the legitimacy of the flotilla raid and Israel's now four year long
blockade against Hamas and the people of Gaza.  Barak's admission is
consistent with on the ground reporting that there was an offensive
mindset among Israeli commandos at the time the raid took place.
Eyewitness accounts found that Israeli commandos had fired upon those in
the raid prior to even boarding the boats (the original claim from Israeli
leaders was that they only attacked the flotilla activists after boarding
and facing serious threats to their safety and lives).

Barak attempted to legitimize the raid by claiming that Israeli leaders
understood "the organizations [supporting the flotilla] were preparing for
armed conflict to embarrass Israel".  Israel's commitment to violence,
however, in order to dismantle and destroy a non-violent humanitarian
campaign, ensured that Israel would be deeply embarrassed, in light of an
embargo widely recognized as illegal under the Geneva Conventions.  The
raid itself is also a blatant violation of provisions of the San Remo
Agreement, in addition to the U.N. Charter, and the Law of the Sea Treaty.

Israeli leaders have consistently maintained that they were within their
rights to attack a humanitarian flotilla comprised of foreign nationals.
Gabi Ashkenazi, the Israeli military Chief of Staff, for example, argues
that the attacks on Turkish civilians were "proportionate and correct" and
that Israeli leaders "shot those who they needed to shoot" in the raid;
"the commandos exhibited calm, bravery, and morality".  These apologetics
for what amounts to an illegal attack on a foreign nation (Turkey) and its
citizens have been repeated for months by Israeli leaders.

In a coordinated misinformation campaign, Israeli officials fed the
fiction that the violence on the part of its commandos was not
premeditated, but was rather part of a spontaneous campaign to "protect
Israeli lives" that only emerged when it was clear that the flotilla
activists - who were supposedly the real belligerents - posed a threat to
their lives.  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced
immediately following the raid that "this was a clear case of self defense
- they [Israeli commandos] were attacked with clubs, with knives, perhaps
with live gunfire, and they had to defend themselves - they were going to
be killed.  Israel will not allow its soldiers to be lynched and neither
would any other respecting country".  Netanyahu referred to the incident
as "regrettable," but blamed flotilla activists, saying the deaths were
"the result of an intentional provocation of forces which support Iran and
its terrorist enclave, Hamas, in the Gaza Strip".  Worth noting here is
that Netanyahu uses the word "provocation" to condemn the actions of
Flotilla activists, although he now admits that he knew the entire
operation would provoke a violent response from the beginning.

The Israeli Supreme Court publicly supported Netanyahu's propagandistic
statements.  The court's President, Dorit Beinish, rejected legal suits on
the flotilla raid, harshly attacking those petitioning the case.  She
announced that the Israeli "soldiers [were] forced to respond [by killing
the activists] in order to protect their lives".  This statement was
relevant on one level, at least in the sense that the commandos were no
doubt attempting to preserve their lives against civilians they were in
the process of killing.  That Israel was protecting the lives of
belligerents engaged in criminal aggression, however, was hardly the
framework in which Beinish was seeking to establish.

The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs - a name fitting of Orwell's 1984
- made an equally Orwellian announcement following the raid that "the
organizers of the Gaza flotilla announced in advance (May 30) their
intention of using violence against Israeli forces if the latter tried to
prevent the ships from reaching Gaza".  This narrative essentially turns
on its head the reality that it was Israel that pushed for violent
confrontation against what was (prior to the illegal attack) a peaceful,
humanitarian flotilla.

The recent admission of aggressive intent on the part of Barak is
disturbing, although not surprising, for those who have long argued that
Israel's attacks on the Occupied Territories are illegal acts of
collective punishment that essentially terrorize an entire nation of
people.  Sadly, this understanding of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is
censored in western media that are content in uncritically repeating the
propaganda of Israeli leaders (I chronicled this tendency of the U.S.
press in two previous pieces: 1. "Rogue State Politics," Counterpunch, 4
June 2010; and 2."A Tale of Two Raids," Z Magazine, 15 June 2010.

Recent reporting on the flotilla inquiry has again promoted a pro-Israeli
narrative.  The New York Times headline on August 11th read: "Barak Says
'Friction' was Expected in Flotilla Raid".  The use of the term "friction"
implied that the incident was far less severe than it really was when it
came to the critical international reaction.  The Times story repeated
Israeli claims that "the commandos were expecting only passive
resistance." An Israeli military investigation concluded last month that
the anticipated level of violence used against the Israeli forces had been
"underestimated"..  Similarly, the Washington Post headline from August
10th read: "Netanyahu: Action Against Gaza Aid Ship was Ordered as 'Last
Resort'"..  The story created the impression of a defensive Israel,
reluctantly killing foreign civilians and violating international law
(although Israel's violation of international law was recognized nowhere
in either the Times or Post stories).  The Post also reported that
"statements by the flotilla organizers indicated that they wanted to break
Israel's blockade on the Gaza Strip by 'creating a provocation' and
instigating 'media-covered friction at sea with the Israel Defense Forces'
that would create 'international pressure to remove the naval blockade,'
Netanyahyu said..  Both of these accounts, it should be pointed out, laid
blame at the hands of non-violent activists seeking to violate an illegal
blockade and an illegal occupation.  That the raid could be portrayed as a
"provocation" on the part of humanitarian activists, through no fault of
Israeli officials, is a sign of the extreme propaganda that dominates the
American media and political debate on the Middle East. [The Zionist
Blitzkreig, Seig Yahweh! -ed]

That Israel routinely provokes confrontations with its neighbors and other
nearby countries so that it can engage in aggressive military attacks
(designed to further its military dominance of the region) is painfully
understood throughout the Middle East and much of the rest of the world,
although Americans are shielded from this reality by the journalistic and
political establishment in Washington.  Barak's admission that Israel
expected violence from the get-go have been predictably ignored or
downplayed in the U.S. media and by U.S. officials.  This is to be
expected among those who see Israel as occasionally making "mistakes" in
its generally necessary application of force in the name of self defense.
Israel's commitment to regional "peace" and "stability," rather than to
militarism and domination, are considered beyond reprieve.

What's completely erased from this narrative, however, is the fact that
Israeli leaders themselves admit it's a fraud.  They cynically attack
their enemies for "planned provocation" and "violence" at the time of the
flotilla raid, then quietly admit months later that provocation and
violence were, in reality, endemic in their own actions and planning.  Why
Americans should take further Israeli calls for "defense" and "protecting
Israeli lives" seriously in light of such manipulation and propaganda is a
question we should all be asking.

Anthony DiMaggio is the editor of media-ocracy (www.media-ocracy.com), a
daily online magazine devoted to the study of media, public opinion, and
current events.  He has taught U.S. and Global Politics at Illinois State
University and North Central College, and is the author of When Media Goes
to War (2010) and Mass Media, Mass Propaganda (2008). He can be reached
at: mediaocracy [at] gmail.com


--------15 of 17--------

Replace the Fallen and Keep Your Mouth Shut
Needing You
By MISSY BEATTIE
CounterPunch
August 13 - 15, 2010

Officials at the Department of Veterans Affairs believe that more than
6000 veterans will commit suicide in 2010.

According to an article in Foreign Policy, an average of one soldier a day
committed suicide in June.

When Barack Obama spoke to Disabled Veterans of America (DVA) in Georgia
on August 2, he addressed post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), calling
it "a pain like no other" and continued with:

" the hopelessness that has led too many of our troops and veterans to
take their own lives. Today, I want to say to anyone who is struggling -
do not suffer in silence. It's not a sign of weakness to reach out for
support - it's a sign of strength. Your country needs you".

"Your country needs you". Yes, the United States of American needs you.

Your country needs you for imperialist wars and occupations.

Your country needs you to secure the resources of other countries.

Your country needs you to risk your life to ensure that the power elite
will remain the power elite.

Your country needs you to use weapons banned by international law.

Your country needs you to keep your mouth shut.

Your country needs you to inspire terrorism.

Your country needs you to replace the fallen.

Your country needs you, needs you, needs you - for exploitation.

Imagine if Obama were struck by a bolt of honesty and said all of the
above instead of the usual 9/11, 9/11, 9/11, terrorists, insurgents, and
al- Qa'ida. Oh, and 9/11.

Imagine if White House press secretary Robert Gibbs had admitted to
Obama's Bushian agenda instead of calling the president's progressive
critics "the Professional Left" and suggesting that we, who don't hesitate
to condemn Barry's compromises, are "crazy" and, thus, should "be
drug-tested."

Candor, lost among mainstream politicos, could terminate a pathology that
has plunged this country to the depths of immorality. If forthrightness
were articulated, all parents and loved ones of troops wounded or killed
in war, finally, might question, as Cindy Sheehan did: "For what noble
cause?" Those who wear the uniform might question, as well. Might even
expose war crimes as PFC Bradley Manning, who didn't keep his mouth shut,
recently did.

For what noble cause are they returning with PTSD? For what noble cause
are they killing? For what noble cause are they dying? For what noble
cause are they committing suicide?

I remember hearing a military mom's poignant speech at an antiwar rally.
She described a son who returned from combat a changed man, someone whose
behavior she didn't recognize.

People cope with agony differently. I just read about a soldier who
completed suicide after serving in Iraq. His parents, now, are working for
an easier navigation of mental health care and attempting to eliminate the
stigma associated with asking for psychological therapy. Certainly, this
is honorable. But more is necessary. A system that assaults the psyche,
the system that either emotionally damages or physically slaughters must
end.

I'm finished with hearing, "He died doing what he loved". As if this
statement lays the dead to rest, along with the dialogue about war's
reality. I want to ask how someone can love dying for lies. How can anyone
love the sights and smells of death? Of seeing children whose flesh is
melted by explosives? How? [Well, the rich are all for it. The more death
and destrutuction and inhumanity there is, the more money and power they
pile up. Evil is their good. The Devil's disciples. -ed]

When will people become so outraged that they will identify the problem
pattern that sends young men and women thousands of miles away to massacre
other human beings and risk being killed for lies? A structure that
forever alters survivors.

We must teach our children to value life. We must teach them that no one
wins in war. Instead of calling for more suicide hotlines, mothers,
fathers, and spouses of soldiers, in fact, each and every one of us,
should acknowledge the hideous truth of war.

[And we should acknowledge that so long as we have billionaires, we will
have war. To end war, billionaires - and any lesser amount that can bribe
people and government - must be made illegal. This is a "freedom" that
democracy cannot tolerate or live with. It's one or the other. -ed]

President Obama wants our troops to seek help because his administration
is "making major investments in awareness, outreach, and suicide
prevention".

The noble solution, obviating the need for military mental health
maintenance, is war prevention. Its synonym is peace.

Missy Beattie lives in Baltimore, Maryland. Reach her at
missybeat [at] gmail.com.


--------16 of 17--------

 The rich man's butt is
 red from lipstick kisses. And
 now your lips are too.


--------17 of 17--------

 Friends of rich men have
 green stuff in their pockets and
 brown stuff on their lips.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

   - David Shove             shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu
   rhymes with clove         Progressive Calendar
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