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Cynthia McKinney 3/31/2006 Wayne Madsen: scroll down to one of the March 31, 2006 - "For all those on the right-wing and the neo-con press like the fatally-flawed neo-con Atlanta Journal-Constitution who are reporting that Georgia Democratic Representative Cynthia McKinney will be arrested next week for an altercation with a Capitol Hill cop, unless the US Constitution has been suspended, McKinney cannot be arrested. The immunity clause -- Article 1, Section 6, of the U.S. Constitution -- protects members of Congress from harassment by law enforcement as they travel to and from Congress in the conduct of the business of either legislative chamber. Although the language is arcane, it appears the Capitol Hill cop was the first to breach the peace as a result of his incompetence in failing to properly identify a member of Congress. Most of these cops just stand around all day, the least they can do is study the provided photographs and learn the names of the members. Every lobbyist and journalist worth a salt in Washington is capable of no less. Hey, main stream media, for once, could you please get it right?"
An Act of State - The Execution of Martin Luther King 3/31/2006 Counterpunch: review of Pepper's book by his investigator.
Boortz: Rep. McKinney "looks like a ghetto slut" 3/31/2006 Media Matters
McKinney Faces Arrest for Scuffle 3/31/2006 News 11
More on African American NSA analyst Ken Ford and his crooked trial 3/31/2006 Wayne Madsen: scroll down to one of the March 31, 2006 - "In yesterday's sentencing hearing for former NSA analyst Ken Ford, Federal Judge Peter Messitte mentioned the defense's contention that the classified NSA documents Ford was accused of removing from NSA had been planted in Ford's home. Messitte also stated, "no one knows how he [Ford] ended up with these documents." Messitte also referred to Florida resident Tonya Tucker [one of many aliases], the government's confidential informant who initiated the sting against Ford, a "curious figure." Yet, even with such doubts about the case against Ford, Messitte sentenced Ford to six years in prison. In fact, the prosecution engaged in gross and illegal misconduct for the duration of the trial and pre-trial. The prosecutor, Assistant US Attorney David Salem, relied on false affidavits, perjured testimony, and a tainted jury -- complete with a government plant who did not identify himself as a former employee of NSA contractor Northrop Grumman, and coached witnesses to get his conviction against Ford, the only U.S. intelligence employee who has been jailed as a result of his expressed doubts about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. Ford prepared a May 2003 NSA signals intelligence report, based on intercepts of Iraqi communications and interviews with NSA counter-proliferation specialists, that disproved the Bush administration's theory about Iraqi WMDs. That report eventually ended up in Vice President Dick Cheney's office. The same type of retaliatory "work up" used on Ambassador Joe Wilson and his covert CIA wife was launched against Ford. However, as a young GS-9 and African American, Ford was much more vulnerable to being set up in a criminal sting than the more savvy and experienced members of the US Intelligence Community."
Lawyer Says McKinney a Victim in Scuffle 3/31/2006 AP
McKinney Video Won't Be Released 3/30/2006 WXIA-TV, Atlanta
Report: McKinney Punches Cop 3/30/2006 News 11, Atlanta: "The officer called out, “Ma’am, Ma’am,” and walked after her in an attempt to stop her. When he caught McKinney, he grabbed her by the arm.
Witnesses say McKinney pulled her arm away, and with her cell phone in hand, punched the officer in the chest.
According to the Drudge Report, the entire incident is on tape. Drudge continues, "The cop is pressing charges, and the USCP (United States Capitol Police) are waiting until Congress adjourns to arrest her, a source claims."
No charges have been filed. Capitol Police spokeswoman Sgt. Kimberly Schneider says that senior officials have been made aware of the incident and are investigating." [The officer apparently did a bit more than grab her arm.]
Gov. Bush: Official Shouldn't Have E-Mailed 3/28/2006 AP: "Florida's top investigator should not have communicated privately with a county sheriff while the state investigated the death of a teenager who was punched and kicked by guards at the county's boot camp, Gov. Jeb Bush said Tuesday. Guy Tunnell, commissioner of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, exchanged several e-mails with Bay County Sheriff Frank McKeithen and others about the investigation and the department's effort to withhold a video showing the beating of 14-year-old Martin Lee Anderson… An initial autopsy found the boy died from complications of sickle cell trait, but a nationally known pathologist, Dr. Michael Baden, said after observing a second autopsy that Anderson likely was suffocated during the confrontation at the camp."
Black culture washed away by Hurricane Katrina 3/22/2006 Final Call: "Prof. White is also the owner of one of the largest collections of New Orleans jazz memorabilia in the nation, all destroyed when Katrina waters covered his slab house for more than two weeks. He has performed for 30 years with the likes of the original Liberty Jazz, the Preservation Hall Band and his own Michael White quartet.
“I lost rooms and rooms full of books, CDs, vintage instruments, valuable photographs, music memorabilia, videos, original music, music transcriptions and the list goes on,” he says, citing a clarinet mouthpiece that belonged to Sidney Bechet and original transcriptions of music that was written or composed by Jelly Roll Morton, and Louis Armstrong.
“So much of Black New Orleans culture was sort of taken for granted and ignored,” Prof. White says. “It just sort of existed in spite of politicians, commercialism, racism, ignorance and indifference.”
Solemnly he adds: “It shows where our value system is and where our lack of cultural awareness is. Now is an opportunity for change, a time to reevaluate how we look at culture and the importance of New Orleans to the United States and the world.”"
Boot Camp Teen Likely Suffocated 3/17/2006 AP: "A teen who died after guards punched and kicked him at a boot camp likely was suffocated during the confrontation and was brain dead when he was brought to a hospital, a pathologist told lawmakers Friday.
Dr. Michael Baden observed the second autopsy performed on 14-year-old Martin Lee Anderson on Monday in Tampa. He was there on behalf of Anderson's family, who disputes the original autopsy, which found the boy died of complications of sickle cell trait, a usually benign blood disorder many blacks have."
Rachel's story needs to be told, now 3/16/2006 Seattle Post Intelligencer: columnist is African American - "Rachel was in the Middle East, trying to protect the home of a Palestinian from immoral demolition, when an Israeli soldier driving a Caterpillar bulldozer killed her. He ran her over.
Maybe the young student from The Evergreen State College was a tad naive, a puppet of left-leaning loonies with the International Solidarity Movement. Some people think this. Maybe she was prescient beyond her 23 years, recognizing that her white skin and U.S. passport could bring vital attention to ignored people in subhuman and desperate conditions. Some think that.
Whichever the case, too many people are reflexively afraid of Rachel's message, of what her short life and brutal death means.
The issue has gotten to the point that what passes for dialogue is either polemical shouting -- or, worse, a campaign to silence the legacy of the young woman who addressed human suffering with fiery grace. Rachel cared about ordinary people outside of her comfort zone -- enough to get off the couch and do something."
The Civil War in America 3/16/2006 Black Commentator: "The right to abortion became the law of the land with the Supreme Court Roe v. Wade decision in 1973. In the absence of that decision being overturned by the court, the action of the South Dakota legislature gives the finger to the United States constitution and anyone who believes in it. South Dakota has fired on Fort Sumter. Congressman John Conyers stated, “Victory in the South Dakota case will give conservatives renewed momentum to challenge all the other freedoms we hold dear.”
When the Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision outlawed segregation in public schools, southern states decided to ignore the law. Some didn’t desegregate and dared anyone to complain. Others closed their public schools and deprived black children of their right to an education.
South Dakota’s legislators are like the segregationists of old. They have intentionally broken the law. They are hoping for court challenges and expect Bush appointees Alito and Roberts to live up to right wing expectations and overturn the Roe decision."
Iranian oil bourse hits wall 3/15/2006 Globe & Mail: "But they are jumping the gun if they still figure Iran is within days of launching a new international oil exchange that would sell its own and other Middle Eastern oil producers' black gold in euros rather than U.S. dollars -- and which, the theory goes, could ultimately torpedo the greenback and the U.S. economy.
Despite repeated reports over the past 18 months or so that the planned bourse would finally open for business on March 20, 2006 -- and go head to head with the New York Mercantile Exchange and the ICE Futures Exchange in London -- the start date has been postponed by at least several months and maybe more than a year." [At a time when Iran has begun negotiations with the US over Iraq…]
Uranium bombing in Iraq contaminates Europe 3/15/2006 SF Bay View: "At Aldermaston, England, where the data was collected and where the British Atomic Weapons Establishment, complete with air monitoring facilities, is located, the deadly uranium oxide gas measured about 48,000 radioactive particles per square meter. The average radioactive dose, according to official government index based calculations, was about 23 million radioactive particles for the average adult male in Britain and Europe.
Yes, people breathed this poison gas, absolutely. People throughout England and presumably throughout Europe breathed in large quantities of this radioactive uranium poison gas.
What are the effects of the poison gas cloud? After a steady decline for 41 years, the infant death rate has started inching up, many researchers think because of the Central Asian nuclear wars. The infant death rate is the most sensitive measure of the health of the human race. Like the proverbial canaries in a coal mine, the tiniest babies die first."
Dictatorship is the danger - A Reagan-appointed supreme court justice voices her fears over attacks on US democracy 3/13/2006 Guardian, UK: "Then she spoke the D-word. "I, said O'Connor, am against judicial reforms driven by nakedly partisan reasoning. Pointing to the experiences of developing countries and former communist countries where interference with an independent judiciary has allowed dictatorship to flourish, O'Connor said we must be ever-vigilant against those who would strong-arm the judiciary into adopting their preferred policies. It takes a lot of degeneration before a country falls into dictatorship, she said, but we should avoid these ends by avoiding these beginnings." Delivered by someone who was, until recently, one of the nine guardians of the US constitution, these are spine-chilling opinions, and you might have thought they'd have been all over the papers the next day. Not so. I happened to catch Totenberg's NPR report last Friday, and have been following up references to it. A cable TV talkshow and a handful of blogs have mentioned Totenberg's piece: otherwise there's been a disquieting silence, as if the former justice had laid an unsavoury egg and had best be politely ignored... These are peculiar times, and when Republican politicians appear to endorse the killing of judges who make rulings of which they disapprove, it's maybe understandable that a distinguished judge like Sandra Day O'Connor, expressing views calculated to enrage Republican politicians, might sensibly look to a small podium with a weak sound system for fear of being heard too clearly by the likes of Cornyn and DeLay."
"You Have Left Home to Come Home" - Memories of Ali Farka Touré 3/13/2006 Counterpunch: "descendant of ancient Tukulor rulers of Northern Mali (originating in Morocco), Ali had a firm grasp of history from ancient days through the present, being able to recount his family's origins in Fez centuries ago. He also loved Black American music." [Ali had an extraordinarily broad knowledge of his people's history.]
The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy 3/13/2006 Harvard University: 83 pages, sources to Israeli scholars and human rights organizations.
U.S. Intelligence and the South African Bomb 3/13/2006 National Security Archives
Gale Norton's sudden decision to resign as Interior Secretary is a sign that the Jack Abramoff investigation is closing in on higher-ranking Bush administration officials, according to informed Washington insiders 3/12/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: scroll down to March 12, 2006
Mi Cubanidad 3/11/2006 Un Bohio: published 10/05, nice column - "My worldview was tinted by that dogmatic brain-washing (heavy on the bleach) until 26 March, 2000 when I had the good fortune of encountering the indomitable Dr. Alberto Jones, a generous Guantanamero, in the historic chapel of my alma mater. Mr. Jones is a fascinating man whose energy belies his actual age. A defiantly and politely proud patriot, he also takes great pride in his Jamaican ancestry. I have taken great pride in passing along quite a few of Dr. Jones' columns and essays over the years.
Among the things I am grateful for about our friendship, the one thing that stands out the most is the opening of what is an ever-increasing devotion to freethinking and truth seeking.
A price tag cannot ever be put on that gift and I will be ever grateful for it.
The times when I have heard an African-American express any opinion about Fidel Castro, most of the time, the opinion that is expressed is one based on that individual’s perception of a certain significant level of respect he or she has for the Cuban leader. This perception of Castro is often muddied by the incessant and confusing demonizing of him and his initiatives as practiced by both this country’s corporate media and successive administrations in Washington, D.C. Thus, the question that logically follows is “what are we missing about Castro when it comes to skin color?”"
Who Is Killing New Orleans? 3/10/2006 The Nation
China tells Amerikkka to go to hell! 3/9/2006 Irak War: "The State Council, China's cabinet, denounced the United States for what it said were rampant violence and widespread discrimination against minorities — especially blacks — in its annual response to the State Department's report on human rights worldwide.
"For a long time, the life and security of the people of the United States has not been under efficient protection," the Chinese report said.
Blacks are given heavier criminal penalties, arrested more frequently and are more likely to be targeted for hate crimes, the report said."
Fifty Dollars and a Dream: Angola 3 and Common Ground Collective 3/7/2006 IndyMedia: "According to the National Coalition to Free the Angola Three (now with multiple international chapters), King, Wallace and Woodfox were set up. So why does the Coalition believe that these innocent men would be framed, then left rotting in solitary confinement for 33 years? Because in 1972, while the civil rights movement was taking some time to make its way into Louisiana, the Angola Three were outspoken political activists and self-professed Black Panthers. The then-governor of Louisiana had publicly vowed not to let the Panthers get off the ground in his state, and King, Wallace and Woodfox were just three of hundreds of casualties of J. Edgar Hoover's COINTELPRO program, which used illegal tactics to demonize the Panthers.
Years before Rahim, also a former Black Panther, took up the cause of the Angola Three, he had also faced a lifetime behind bars when he was arrested on a host of charges, including the attempted murder of police officers. Miraculously acquitted of all charges, Rahim has been a tireless advocate for the poor ever since. When he took a look at the evidence -- or the lack of it -- against the Angola Three, he thought if other people knew their story, they would care. He was right."
Afro-Venezuelans denounce divide-and-conquer scheme
by Willie Thompson 3/1/2006 SF Bay View: "Eve Golinger-Moncada, a Venezuelan-American attorney and author of “The Chavez Code,” is reported by Afro-Venezuelans to be denouncing Afro- and Indigenous Venezuelans on radio and television in Caracas. She alleges that they are taking money from U.S. government agencies – NED, IRI and USAID – to destabilize and overthrow the Bolivarian Venezuelan government of President Hugo Chavez.
The reports, brought back from the 2006 World Social Forum recently held in Venezuela and received in emails, are deeply troubling to both Afro-Venezuelans and African North Americans. Golinger-Moncada is said not to have named any specific Afro- or Indigenous-Venezuelan groups or organizations.
Afro-Venezuelans believe she is trying to divide the Afro- and Indigenous Venezuelans from the Bolivarian movement so as to aid the real opponents of the Venezuelan government for personal gain. In 2004, Golinger-Moncada published a list of organizations receiving funding from the U.S., but it isn’t clear that they included Afro- and Indigenous Venezuelan organizations. It is important to know that Congressman Gregory Meeks of the Congressional Black Caucus is a member of the NED (National Endowment for Democracy) board of directors."
Eva Golinger: NED on the offensive in Venezuela 3/1/2006 Vheadlines: published 11/04, background to the current controversy about Golinger's charges that Afro-Venezuelans are taking NED money
Conn. Approves Venezuelan Heating Oil 2/28/2006 AP: "Connecticut has given social service agencies permission to supply low-income residents with discounted heating oil from Venezuela, whose energy aid program for the needy has rankled the Bush administration. The state Department of Social Services began notifying the nonprofit agencies Monday after Attorney General Richard Blumenthal ruled that the Venezuelan oil program is legal, said David McDonald, spokesman for the Connecticut Association for Community Action, a coalition of the private nonprofit groups.
Blumenthal was asked for a legal opinion by Gov. M. Jodi Rell.
Venezuela, the fifth-largest foreign supplier of oil to the U.S., has been supplying millions of gallons of heating oil at a 40 percent discount to poor Americans and free heating fuel to homeless shelters."
Former NSA analyst Ken Ford, Jr., is scheduled to be sentenced 2/28/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: "Tomorrow, former NSA analyst Ken Ford, Jr. [an African American], is scheduled to be sentenced after his political show trial. For those of you in the DC/Baltimore/Annapolis area who wish to attend tomorrow's 9:30 am sentencing and show your support for yet another railroaded member of the U.S. intelligence community, click here for directions to the US Court House in Greenbelt, Maryland. Tell the security guard at the front gate that you are attending a hearing. Parking is free. The hearing is scheduled for 4C in the chambers of Judge Peter Messitte.
At the very least, if you've only seen dirty prosecutors played by actors in the movies and on TV, this is your opportunity to see a real one, the neocon operative who doubles as the Assistant U.S. Attorney for Maryland, David I. Salem, appointed by the US Attorney for the District of Maryland, Rod Rosenstein."
Affirmative Action in Brazil - the Day of the Lambs 2/23/2006 Black Commentator: "Today, white Affirmative Action is everywhere in Brazil but, at least in one sector, higher education, its days are ending.
For a long time - a time that lasted from the country's discovery until two years ago - white students in Brazil could count on a kind of Affirmative Action for their own exclusive benefit. Among other things, that privilege explains why 98% of professors with masters or Ph.D degrees are white and why, although 48% of the population is black, only 14% of university students are black. White AA was not created by nature, of course, but was a perverse manmade system. At first, it was supported by laws that made it a crime to teach a slave how to read and write. Following that, other laws blocked their access to the land and profitable professions. Thus, abolition ended official slavery, but, far from being free, blacks were stigmatized by ignorance and condemned to material poverty, which provide the White Affirmative Action with subsistence. That's why, today, blacks and whites can be found, in the same proportion, in three places: slums, prisons and mental institutions. But not in professorships, justice, diplomacy and in first rank of government."
An Interview with His Lawyer, Stephen Bingham - The Murder of George Jackson 2/23/2006 Counterpunch: "I suspect the governor himself was relatively clueless about who George was, as he was winning bodybuilding contests in the 1970s and beginning his decidedly unpolitical acting career. The question is who were the minions in the state Department of Justice (run by top Democcrat Bill Lockyer) or the governor's office itself who decided it was important to mention Williams' admiration for George, as well as Nelson Mandela, Angela Davis, Malcolm X, Assata Shakur, Geronimo Pratt, Ramona and John Africa, Leonard Peltier and Dhoruba al-Mujahid.
It's significant that these people of color with highly advanced political agendas--whether you agree with the politics of some of them or not--are clearly viewed as a real threat to our governmental institutions, even though several are still in prison.
That the governor refused clemency in part because Williams admired these people makes his execution one of the most political executions in modern history."
Common Ground continues to make changes in New Orleans 2/22/2006 SF Bay View: "If you were here in November or December, here's what's changed: The community center, the church, the medical clinic and the distribution center in the Upper Ninth now form a compound. It's grown into a much bigger hive of activity.
The community center now has tarp walls and is now filled with bunk beds. There's a dining room, bulletin boards and a medic cave, and the kitchen has been fully set up. The community center is running electricity off of the church.
The church also has tarp walls and bunk beds and the sanctuary, where people have been sleeping, is being cleared out for a series of bioremediation trainings. CGC offices have been set up in both buildings. There's a large work and building area in the parking lot of the church.
The living areas at the compound are completely full. At the same time, they really need people in St. Bernard and Plaquemines, so they're diverting volunteers to those centers. I haven't been there but will try to get there to see what the areas are like and what work is being done.
Sometime soon, there will be 200 volunteers arriving. I can't imagine how that's going to work, but I know CGC will make it work."
What about the levees, toxic soup and 645,000 mold spores per cubic meter? 2/22/2006 SF Bay View
Black college students heading to work on post-Katrina reconstruction 2/22/2006 SF Bay View
Democrats call for independent investigation of FEMA response to Katrina 2/22/2006 SF Bay View
Gulf Coast Housing Crisis - Statement of the People's Hurricane Relief Fund 2/22/2006 SF Bay View
Tell Congress to act now to get Katrina recovery efforts on track 2/22/2006 SF Bay View
10-Year U.S. Strategic Plan For Detention Camps Revives Proposals From Oliver North 2/21/2006 Pacific News Service: by Peter Dale Scott - "In consequence, the United States is being redefined as a vast gated community, hoping to isolate itself by force from its poverty-stricken neighbors. Inside the U.S. fortress sit 2.1 million prisoners, a greater percentage of the population than in any other nation. ENDGAME's crash program is designed to house additional detainees who have not been convicted of crimes.
Significantly, both the KBR contract and the ENDGAME plan are open-ended. The contract calls for a response to "an emergency influx of immigrants, or to support the rapid development of new programs" in the event of other emergencies, such as "a natural disaster." "New programs" is of course a term with no precise limitation. So, in the current administration, is ENDGAME's goal of removing "potential terrorists."
It is relevant that in 2002, Attorney General John Ashcroft announced his desire to see camps for U.S. citizens deemed to be "enemy combatants." On Feb. 17 of this year, in a speech to the Council on Foreign Relations, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld spoke of the harm being done to the country's security, not just by the enemy, but also by what he called "news informers" who needed to be combated in "a contest of wills." Two days earlier, citing speeches critical of Bush by Al Gore, John Kerry, and Howard Dean, conservative columnist Ben Shapiro called for "legislation to prosecute such sedition."
Book on Garifuna to be published 2/19/2006 Carribean Net News: "Honduras This Week writer Wendy Griffin has written a book about the Garifuna culture, ready for release this February.
Entitled Los Garifunas de Honduras: Su Cultura, Su Lucha y Sus Derechos Bajo Convenio 169 de la OIT (The Garifunas of Honduras: Their Culture, Their Struggle and Their Rights Under ILO Convention 169), the book explores a range of cultural characteristics of the Garifuna community including their agriculture, hunting, dances, medicines, religion, architectural environment, and crafts (including baskets and tools for the processing of the Cassava root to make bread).
One of the key areas Griffin focuses on is how the different elements of Garifuna culture are related to the environment, how ecological degradation has contributed to the loss of land and has been detrimental to the Garifuna people.
“The Garifunas need to know how to unite in the struggle and be successful in protecting their lands,” said Griffin on why she wrote the book.
To Griffin, the most important document regarding land rights is the International Labour Organization’s legal rights convention 169. ILO 169 demonstrates the Garifuna’s legal rights to lands.
OFRANEH, an ethnic federation that represents Garifunas through petitions, press releases and complaints, is also discussed in the book. By highlighting the organizations and laws dedicated to protecting Garifuna rights, Griffin hopes to strengthen isolated Garifuna communities by integrating them into a larger network."
Halliburton Detention Centers 2/16/2006 Black Commentator: "Now is the time for all good people to come to the aid of their country and become unapologetically paranoid. Paranoia should now be the normal state of mind for thinking people. Sneers and dismissive remarks about "conspiracy theorists" must be ignored. We don't want to end up like the proverbial frog who boils to death because the heat was turned up slowly."
Tension Between Doctors, Free Clinics Rise 2/16/2006 AP: "LONG BEACH, Miss. - When Clifton Davis hurt his eye recently, he went to a free medical clinic in this hurricane-wrecked community. For Davis, and others with health insurance, getting free care is easier than figuring out if regular doctors are still around… Some complain that jump-starting their businesses will be tougher as long as clinics are providing free care and free medicine.
"We are very appreciative of what they've done, but it's time to move on," said Dr. Douglas Lanier, who treats kidney diseases at Memorial Hospital in Gulfport."
A FAILURE OF INITIATIVE - Final Report of the Select Bipartisan Committee to Investigate the Preparation for and Response to Hurricane Katrina 2/15/2006 U.S. House of Representatives: 6MB download
The Cartoons and the Neocon - Daniel Pipes and the Danish Editor 2/15/2006 Counterpunch: "So, let’s look at the guy who started this whole cartoon escapade. He’s Flemming Rose, the cultural editor of the Danish newspaper. In all of the Lexis-Nexis database of stories from the American media on the Mohammed cartoons, there is absolutely no mention of the fact that Rose is a close confederate of arch-Islamophobe Daniel Pipes. Indeed, there is almost no context at all about Rose’s newspaper. On a brief mention in the Washington Post gave a hint at a fact desperately needed to understand the situation. The Post described the affair as “a calculated insult … by a right-wing newspaper in a country where bigotry toward the minority Muslim population is a major, if frequently unacknowledged, problem.”
How bad is Pipes? He wants the utter military obliteration of the Palestinians; indeed, from the Muslim world, his racism is about as blatant as that of the Holocaust denying Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Pipes’ frequent outbursts of racism -- designed to toss gasoline on the neo-cons’ lust for a wholesale conflict of cultures -- earned him a Bush nomination to the U.S. Institute of Peace, a congressionally funded think tank. Rose came to America to commune with Pipes in 2004, and it was after that meeting the cartoon gambit materialized."
Jack Abramoff’s White Man's Burden 2/15/2006 Media Channel: "A top-secret meeting was then underway between Savimbi and his boosters led by a young American Republican activist, none other than Jack Abramoff, a man who could bring down the current GOP Administration. He was there representing an organization he founded, the International Freedom Foundation. Abramoff, and others disguised their identities. His code name was “Pacman.”
Also present, a South African newspaper reports, “Leaders of the Afghan mujahedin, Nicaraguan contras, Laotian guerrillas and members of the Oliver North American right." (Could a Bin Laden operative have been there with the CIA-backed Afghan delegation? There’s no evidence of that yet.) "
‘We can do what we want to do’ - Patriot Act retaliation against Black NSA whistleblower 2/15/2006 SF Bay View: "A travesty of justice occurred on Dec. 15, 2005. Kenneth Wayne Ford Jr., an honest and honorable young African-American man, was judged guilty of espionage and lying on a federal form by a jury of by no means his peers. Ford faces up to 15 years in prison and up to $500,000 in fines. He is to be sentenced on March 1.
An intern-analyst for the super-secret National Security Agency, Ken Ford authored a signals intelligence report that told the truth about nuclear WMD (weapons of mass destruction) components in Iraq. That earned him the wrath of the Bush administration.
In the Clinton White House, Ken Ford had been a uniformed member of the U.S. Secret Service. He was trained to take a bullet for President Clinton or the first lady. Will either President Clinton or Sen. Clinton be present at his sentencing in gratitude and in solidarity? Will other whistleblowers, human rights and antiwar activists, Congressional Black Caucus members and intelligence and military veterans stand idly by while an innocent Black man is lynched?"
Letter from the parents of wrongfully-convicted former NSA intern-analyst Kenneth Ford, the author of a signals intelligence report that questioned Iraqi nuclear WMD components 2/13/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: Ford is African American - "This editor will be present at the March 1 sentencing at the US District Court in Greenbelt, Maryland in a show of support for Ken Ford and his parents. How many among the whistleblower community, civil and human rights communities, Congressional Black Caucus, antiwar movement, Democratic Party, and intelligence agency and military veterans will join me there to support an individual who faces up to 15 years in prison and a $500,000 fine for telling the truth about WMDs in Iraq?
Ken Ford Jr., was a uniformed member of the U.S. Secret Service who worked in the Clinton White House. He was trained to take a bullet for President Clinton or the First Lady. Will either President Clinton or Senator Clinton be present in Greenbelt in gratitude and in solidarity?"
Chavez deadline for US preachers 2/12/2006 BBC: [Documents available on the web suggests Chavez is correct in his assessment of New Tribe.]
FBI says Puerto Rico sweep aimed at stopping domestic terror 2/11/2006 AFP: "Norberto Cintron Fiallo, a human rights activist who was in charge of organizing Ojeda Rios' funeral in September, told the daily El Nuevo Dia: "This was an operation to crack down on the surge of pro-independence sentiment on the island after the death of Filiberto Ojeda Rios."
For Luis Abreu Elias, a former defense attorney for Ojeda Rios, "it is absurd for them to say they are investigating a terrorist plot. They are trying to turn public opinion against the pro-independence forces," he told the daily."
Bush lied over Katrina, sacked head of disaster agency says 2/11/2006 Independent, UK: "Michael Brown, head of the federal disaster agency at the time of Hurricane Katrina, has reopened a painful wound for President George Bush, charging that the White House knew New Orleans' protective levees had broken far earlier than it had acknowledged.
Testifying to a Senate committee yesterday, Mr Brown said that by the evening of Monday 29 August, his Fema agency had reported to superiors that catastrophic floodwaters were pouring into the city, that fires were breaking out and large numbers of people were stranded.
Conditions, a Fema message said that evening, were "far more serious" than media reports suggested. Nonetheless the following morning, Mr Bush told the country from his ranch in Texas that New Orleans had "dodged the bullet"."
After Fox edited out applause following Lowery's remarks at King funeral, Kondracke expressed surprise at audience's muted reaction 2/9/2006 Media Matters: "Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume showed an edited video clip of Rev. Joseph Lowery's remarks at Coretta Scott King's funeral, during which he mentioned the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Lowery's remarks were greeted with 23 seconds of applause and a standing ovation, but the clip Fox News aired presented nine seconds of applause and little hint of the standing ovation without noting that the clip had been doctored. After seeing the clip, Roll Call's Morton Kondracke concluded that the audience "wasn't exactly uproarious in its response" to Lowery."
Sweden Plans to Be World's First Oil-Free Economy 2/9/2006 Common Dreams: "Sweden is to take the biggest energy step of any advanced western economy by trying to wean itself off oil completely within 15 years - without building a new generation of nuclear power stations.
The attempt by the country of 9 million people to become the world's first practically oil-free economy is being planned by a committee of industrialists, academics, farmers, car makers, civil servants and others, who will report to parliament in several months.
The intention, the Swedish government said yesterday, is to replace all fossil fuels with renewables before climate change destroys economies and growing oil scarcity leads to huge new price rises."
The Educational System Was Designed to Keep Us Uneducated and Docile 2/8/2006 The Menory Hole: "In 1888, the Senate Committee on Education was getting jittery about the localized, non-standardized, non-mandatory form of education that was actually teaching children to read at advanced levels, to comprehend history, and, egads, to think for themselves. The committee's report stated, "We believe that education is one of the principal causes of discontent of late years manifesting itself among the laboring classes." ...In other words, the captains of industry and government explicitly wanted an educational system that would maintain social order by teaching us just enough to get by but not enough so that we could think for ourselves, question the sociopolitical order, or communicate articulately. We were to become good worker-drones, with a razor-thin slice of the population—mainly the children of the captains of industry and government—to rise to the level where they could continue running things.
This was the openly admitted blueprint for the public schooling system, a blueprint which remains unchanged to this day. Although the true reasons behind it aren't often publicly expressed, they're apparently still known within education circles. Clinical psychologist Bruce E. Levine wrote in 2001:
I once consulted with a teacher of an extremely bright eight-year-old boy labeled with oppositional defiant disorder. I suggested that perhaps the boy didn't have a disease, but was just bored. His teacher, a pleasant woman, agreed with me. However, she added, "They told us at the state conference that our job is to get them ready for the work world…that the children have to get used to not being stimulated all the time or they will lose their jobs in the real world.""
Negroes with Guns: Robert Williams and Black Power 2/7/2006 Independent Lens: "NEGROES WITH GUNS: Rob Williams and Black Power tells the dramatic story of the often-forgotten civil rights leader who urged African Americans to arm themselves against violent racists. In doing so, Williams not only challenged the Klan-dominated establishment of his hometown of Monroe, North Carolina, he alienated the mainstream Civil Rights Movement, which advocated peaceful resistance.
For Williams and other African Americans who had witnessed countless acts of brutality against their communities, armed self-defense was a practical matter of survival, particularly in the violent, racist heart of the Deep South. As the leader of the Monroe chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Williams led protests against the illegal segregation of Monroe’s public swimming pool. He also drew international attention to the harsh realities of life in the Jim Crow South. All the while, Williams and other protestors met the constant threat of violence and death with their guns close at hand."
Former NSA analyst Kenneth Ford 2/4/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: scroll down to February 4, 2006 - "A former White House Secret Service officer, Ford, a young African American with three college degrees, was what NSA wanted as a future senior executive at America's signals intelligence agency. That was until Ford's first internship assignment brought him face-to-face with what the Bush administration was cooking up for Iraq. After having transferred from NSA's Information Assurance X72 branch to start his internship in the Signals Intelligence Division (SID), Ford found himself assigned to the all-important "Iraqi shop," the branch responsible for analyzing communication intercepts of Iraqi military, civilian government, diplomatic, and commercial traffic for signs of weapons of mass destruction activity or proliferation."
As Coretta lies in state, controversy remains about her death, funeral and the King children 2/4/2006 Booman Tribune
Hugo Chavez: Bush’s enemy, Blacks’ ally 2/1/2006 SF Bay View
Why Cynthia McKinney lost her seniority and didn’t get it back 2/1/2006 SF Bay View
DNA rewrites history for African-Americans 2/1/2006 USA Today
Home video appears to show deputy shoot man who obeyed commands 1/31/2006 AP
New Orleans May Lose 80 Percent of Blacks 1/27/2006 AP: [that's called ethnic cleansing when it happens in another country]
Study: New Orleans could lose 80 percent of black population 1/26/2006 AP: "The city of New Orleans could lose up to 80 percent of its black population if people displaced by Hurricane Katrina are not able to return to their damaged neighborhoods, according to an analysis released Thursday by a Brown University sociologist."
What they don't want you to know about the coming oil crisis 1/24/2006 Independent: "In the other camp are a group of dissident experts, whom I shall call the "early toppers". They are mostly people who - like me - have worked in the heart of the oil industry, the majority of them geologists, many of them members of an umbrella organisation called the Association for the Study of Peak Oil (ASPO). They are joined by a small but growing number of analysts and journalists. The early toppers reckon that 1 trillion barrels of oil, or less, are left."
Statue of Egyptian queen unearthed 1/24/2006 Al Jazeera: "Ti was the first queen of Egypt to have her name appear on official acts alongside that of her husband. She was known for her influence in state affairs in the reigns of both her husband (1417-1379 BC) and of her son, Akhenaton, (1379-1362 BC) during a time of prosperity and power in the 18th dynasty.
Her son is remembered for being the first pharaoh to advocate monotheism.
Ti, of Nubian heritage, is believed to be the grandmother of Tutankhamun, perhaps the most famous ruler of ancient Egypt.
Amenhotep III, who ruled for 38 years, made a basic change in the history of ancient Egypt when he named his wife, Ti, as queen against the tradition that his sister should be queen."
Editing Chavez to Manufacture a Slur - Some outlets spread spurious charges of anti-Semitism 1/23/2006 FAIR: "The biggest problem with depicting Chavez's speech as an anti-Semitic attack is that Chavez clearly suggested that "the descendants of those who crucified Christ" are the same people as "the descendants of those who expelled Bolivar from here." As American Rabbi Arthur Waskow, who questioned the charge, told the Associated Press (1/5/06), "I know of no one who accuses the Jews of fighting against Bolivar." Bolivar, in fact, fought against the government of King Ferdinand VII of Spain, who reinstituted the anti-Semitic Spanish Inquisition when he took power in 1813. According to the Jewish Virtual Library, a Jewish sympathizer in Curacao provided refuge to Bolivar and his family when he fled from Venezuela.
Most of the accounts attacking Chavez (the Daily Standard was an exception) left the reference to Bolivar out entirely; the Wiesenthal Center deleted that clause from the speech without even offering an ellipsis, which is tantamount to fabrication.
As Waskow further pointed out, in the Gospel accounts, "it was the Roman Empire, and Roman soldiers, who crucified Jesus." While it's true that anti-Semites often accuse Jews of killing Jesus, it's not fair to assert that anyone who refers to the crucifixion of Jesus is attacking the Jewish people.
That Chavez's comments were part of some anti-Semitic campaign is directly contradicted by a letter sent by the Confederation of Jewish Associations of Venezuela to the Wiesenthal Center (AP, 1/14/06). "We believe the president was not talking about Jews," the letter stated, complaining that "you have acted on your own, without consulting us, on issues that you don't know or understand." The American Jewish Committee and the American Jewish Congress agreed with the Venezuelan group's view that Chavez was not referring to Jews in his speech (Inter Press Service, 1/13/06).
In context, the Chavez speech seems to be an attempt by Chavez to link the attacks on his populist government to the attacks on his two oft-cited heroes, Jesus and Bolivar; the "minority" that would link the two would be the rich and powerful minority of society. The reference to "less than 10 percent of the world population" owning half the wealth also makes the idea that Chavez was talking about Jews far-fetched; 10 percent of 6 billion would be 600 million people. (According to the Encyclopedia Brittanica, there are approximately 15 million Jewish people in the world.) "
NO CHILD'S BEHIND LEFT: THE TEST 1/22/2006 Greg Palast: "OK, class, do you know the answer? (By the way, I didn't cheat: there's nothing else about "doubles" in the text.)
My kids go to a New York City school in which more than half the students live below the poverty line. There is no tennis court.
There are no tennis courts in the elementary schools of Bed-Stuy or East Harlem. But out in the Hamptons, every school has a tennis court. In Forest Hills, Westchester and Long Island's North Shore, the schools have nearly as many tennis courts as the school kids have live-in maids.
Now, you tell me, class, which kids are best prepared to answer the question about "doubles tennis"? The 8-year-olds in Harlem who've never played a set of doubles or the kids whose mommies disappear for two hours every Wednesday with Enrique the tennis pro?"
KATRINA AND THE SECOND DISASTER: A Twenty-Point Plan to Destroy Black New Orleans 1/21/2006 Environmental Justice Resource Center
Fighting the Theft of New Orleans: the Rhythm of Resistance 1/21/2006 Black Commentator: "Mayor Ray Nagin's commission has presented residents of flood-battered, mostly African American neighborhoods with a Catch-22, carefully crafted to preclude New Orleans from ever again becoming the more than two-thirds Black city it was before Hurricane Katrina breached the levees. Authored by Nagin crony, real estate development mogul and George Bush fundraiser Joseph Canizaro, the plan would impose a four-month moratorium on building in devastated neighborhoods like the lower Ninth Ward and New Orleans East. During that period, the neighborhoods would be required to come up with a plan to show how they would become "viable" by reaching an undefined "critical mass" of residents.
But the moratorium, itself, discourages people from rebuilding their neighborhoods - just as it is intended to do - thus creating a fait accompli: residents will be hard pressed to prove that a "critical mass" of habitation can be achieved. "It's circular reasoning," said the AALP's Sanyika. They talk about "some level of neighborhood viability, but no one knows what that means. What constitutes viable plans? What kinds of neighborhoods are viable? Everywhere you turn people are trying to rebuild, but there is this constraint."
The commission is empowered only to make recommendations, but with the help of corporate media, pretends their plan is set in stone. "They keep pushing their recommendations as though they are the gospel truth," said Sanyika, who along with tens of thousands of other evacuees has been dispersed to Houston, five hours away. "There is confusion as to all of these recommendations, issued as if they are policy. The Times-Picayune contributes to that confusion. None of this is a given."
Activists believe the way to play this situation is for residents to forge ahead on their own. "Trying to figure out the logic of that illogical proposal is a wasted effort - all you're going to do is wind up going in circles," said Sanyika. He emphasizes that the commission's recommendations are not binding on anyone - certainly not on the majority Black city council, which claims authority in city planning matters. They're not buying the nonsense. "The city council has rejected it. Nagin says ‘ignore it.' I think it's dead in the water," said Sanyika."
Jack Abramoff's past as a South African spy 1/21/2006 Wayne Madsen Report: [scroll down to Jan 21, 2006] "rding to South African intelligence sources, convicted GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff was a long-time intelligence asset for South Africa's apartheid era security services. The revelations from South Africa help to explain Abramoff's connections to white supremacists who use Confederate heritage organizations to mask their true agendas (see article directly below).
In 1985, Abramoff launched the International Freedom Foundation (IFF) in Washington. In fact, IFF was a front for South African military intelligence, code named Pacman, and a major front for South Africa's international propaganda efforts. The IFF was a joint project of Russel Crystal, currently a Democratic Alliance official in South Africa, and a former apartheid South Africa top spy, Craig Williamson. According to South African intelligence sources, Abramoff was first recruited by Crystal and Williamson during 1979 and 1980. Crystal and Williamson were both paid agents of the Apartheid Security Police (SAP (V)). Money paid to Abramoff initially came from SAP(V) accounts."
Thousands still missing after Katrina - Medical examiner wants search to resume in hardest-hit areas 1/19/2006 CNN
Race moves to forefront of post-Katrina debate 1/18/2006 SF Bay View
Congressional housing hearing turns up the heat on FEMA 1/18/2006 SF Bay View: "No facet of government was spared the wrath of Katrina evacuees and Black
leaders assembled Jan. 12-14 in New Orleans for the Institute of the Black World and Congressional Black Caucus hearing on housing Katrina evacuees.
At those meetings and other events planned in honor of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday, government leaders, especially those up for re-election, tried to distance themselves from what is being viewed by Blacks as the federal, state and local government’s racist reaction to the Katrina disaster in view of the much delayed assistance begged for by Katrina victims before, during and after the hurricane."
Time running out on levee repairs for New Orleans 1/15/2006 AP: "It's an enormous task. It will take about 4-million cubic yards of fill - a nearly Superdome-sized pile - to repair the 170 miles of levee destroyed or damaged by Katrina.
"So far we're on schedule and we're doing pretty good," said Col. Lewis Setliff, leader of the repair effort.
There are many who fear that may not be good enough.
"This is just a few Band-Aids, really," said Ivor van Heerden, a civil engineer at Louisiana State University.
"We really need to go the step further and start implementing projects now that would make New Orleans safe."
Setliff says he understands such concerns. But as commander of Task Force Guardian, his mission is to repair the levees in time for hurricane season, and that is what he vows to do. New Orleans will simply have to live through 2006 with about the same protection it has had for the past 30 - even though that wasn't enough to fend off Katrina."
Police Department gives officer medal for shooting black teen in the back of the head 1/14/2006 AP
Predictions of an Economic Hit Man 1/13/2006 Alternet: "The controversial author explains why Bolivia's new president, Argentina's anti-IMF rebellion and the NYC transit strike are all harbingers of things to come."
Award in fatal shooting reopens wounds 1/13/2006 Minneapolis Star Tribune: "A Minneapolis police officer has received the department's Medal of Valor in the shooting death of a teenager 15 years ago. The boy's mother asked: "Why are they doing this?""
Woman Who Dressed As Aunt Jemima Banned From Council Meetings 1/13/2006 Local 6: "An activist who was arrested after disrupting a City Council meeting in an Aunt Jemima costume has been banned by the council president from attending meetings until the end of March. Jackie Brown was escorted out of a Nov. 22 City Council meeting after loudly criticizing the council for the city's small business incentive law. Brown, president of the Jacksonville Coalition of Black Contractors, said the law treats blacks like "slaves" because it does not provide enough opportunities for minority contractors. Photo: own was arrested and charged with causing a disturbance at a lawful assembly and resisting a police officer."
New Orleans Hip-Hop radio station unites displaced victims of Hurricane Katrina 1/11/2006 SF Bay View
New Orleans hip-hop radio station teams with BroadcastUrban to unite displaced victims of hurricane 12/28/2005 SF Bay View
People of New Orleans' Ninth Ward stop home demolitions 12/28/2005 SF Bay View
White House Door Opens for Some Black Critics 12/22/2005 NYT: "But on Wednesday, the new president of the N.A.A.C.P., Bruce S. Gordon, and another prominent black leader - Donna Brazile, who managed Al Gore's campaign for president in 2000 against Mr. Bush - joined 30 people at the White House to talk with Mr. Bush about the rebuilding effort in New Orleans."
Report from the devastated frontlines: Lower Ninth Ward in New Orleans 12/21/2005 SF Bay View
From outrage to action: Justice after Katrina 12/15/2005 Final Call: "With the continued stress of being displaced from their homes, thousands of survivors of Hurricane Katrina returned to New Orleans to demand a change and the right to return to their homes in a demonstration organized by the People’s Hurricane Relief Fund (PHRF) and Oversight Coalition Dec. 10. Marching from Congo Square to City Hall, they demanded that city leaders restore the catastrophic areas of New Orleans."
Eviction moratorium stalls ethnic cleansing in New Orleans 12/14/2005 SF Bay View
Death, Abundance and New Orleans 12/14/2005 SF Bay View: scroll to bottom for list of links - "I put out a call to all the anti-war and counter recruitment organizations after the flooding of N.O. to point out how crucial it is for us to use all of our resources and work together to help create a nationwide movement, similar to a Freedom Summer of the 1960s to support the people from New Orleans in particular and the Gulf Coast in general. With your help, I went to New Orleans during the Thanksgiving week and was able to see with my own eyes the destruction that this administration has perpetrated against the people of New Orleans."
New Orleanians plan rally in Washington, D.C. 12/14/2005 SF Bay View
Additional ties between southern Christian fundamentalists, Texas oil interests, and Russian-Israeli mobsters and weapons smugglers uncovered 12/11/2005 Wayne Madsen Report: scroll down to December 11, 2005. "According to informed Washington insiders, there is increasing evidence of financial links between key "Christian Right" GOP notables and an international ring of Russian-Ukrainian-Israeli mobsters tied to notorious Russian weapons smuggler Viktor Vasilevich (aka Anatoliyevich) Bout. Bout, whose U.S. assets were frozen by the Treasury Department, continues to provide various contractor services in Iraq and is considered by Condoleezza Rice to be out-of-bounds for U.S. law enforcement authorities. When she was National Security Adviser, Rice pre-empted an attempt by Sharjah, United Arab Emirates authorities to arrest Bout. To U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies, Rice was very clear when it comes to Bout: "Look, but don't touch" was her direct order to the CIA and FBI. It appears that Bout has gone from arms smuggler for Al Qaeda and the Taliban to arms runner for the Bush administration. Bout's British Gulf International Airline, registered in Sao Tome and Principe and Kyrgyzstan and based in Sharjah, is a regular visitor to Baghdad International and airports in the north of Iraq. Bout also made a financial windfall from contracts let to his airline companies by the former Iraqi Coalition Provisional Authority led by L. Paul "Jerry" Bremer. Bout also benefited from contracts let to his Dubai-based Falcon Express Cargo by Kellogg, Brown & Root, a subsidiary of Halliburton… There is also now interest in the activities of Richard T. Hines, the head of the powerful Republican lobbying firm RTH Consulting, Inc. Hines, a South Carolina native and a protege of the late GOP dirty trickmeister Lee Atwater, was one of the architects of the dirty tricks campaign by Bush against John McCain in the 2000 South Carolina primary. A confederate of Abramoff in the 1980s Reagan administration's covert support network for the Nicaraguan contras, Angolan UNITA guerrillas, and Afghan mujaheddin, Hines is active in various Confederacy resurgence organizations, many of which have clear racist agendas. However, that has not prevented Hines from becoming the lobbyist for Gambian dictator Yahya Jammeh, a military officer who overthrew Gambia's democratically-elected President Sir Dawda K. Jawara in a 1994 military coup supported by the United States Navy… The connections between Hines and Gambia are important since the small narrow West African country is also a major base of operations for notorious Russian international arms smuggler Viktor Bout. The Gambia is the headquarters for one of many of Bout's front companies -- companies that are used to smuggle everything from weapons to diamonds and mercenaries to international relief supplies… Some law enforcement officials in the United States and Europe believe that the covert flights being operated by CIA contractors and Bout's companies in support of secret prisoner movement are also involved in smuggling drugs." [Eventually this will be archived on a separate page.]
Trinidad Carnival - Afri-Caribbean Resistance 12/11/2005 TriniCenter: published 2/03
US Prisons Provide the Model - Roots of Gitmo Torture Lie Close to Home 12/9/2005 Counterpunch: "In mid-November, the AFSC issued a press release decrying the widespread torture existing in US prisons.
One incident listed in this press release detailed how prison guards in a California jail "put an inmate in a bath so hot it boiled 30% of the skin off his body."
American military and intelligence personnel [allegedly] use various forms of water based torture on detainees at Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib and those CIA operated secret prisons in European countries.
"The tactics approved in US prisons are being exported overseas," said Tonya McClary, national director of the AFSC's Criminal Justice program.
A 1999 report prepared by Bonnie Kerness contained testimonials on torture from inmates across America.
A Utah inmate described being pepper sprayed to the point of getting "burns and blisters to my arms, face, chest and feet." Another account described a "mentally ill prisoner in a New Jersey isolation unit who was tortured to death." Guards made this inmate "perform sexual acts on himself in order to get food and cigarettes.""
Politics or Not, Bronx Warmly Receives Venezuelan Heating Oil 12/9/2005 Washington Post
Evil Racist Children and the Media Who Love Them 12/8/2005 Black Commentator
Katrina victims mobilize, battle for New Orleans to heat up 12/7/2005 SF Bay View: "Because of the ongoing suffering of Katrina victims, the Peoples' Hurricane Committee (www.communitylaborunited.net) is sponsoring a weekend of struggle from Friday to Saturday, Dec. 8-10, where the voice of the victims of Hurricane Katrina will finally take center stage. The group sees the government as having failed the people of New Orleans before and after the hurricane.
An indicting statement on its promotional flyer states: "The government failed to repair the levees, the government failed to have any evacuation plan for those without funds or cars, the government failed to plan to rescue those left behind, and now the government fails to include us in any decision making about money meant to relieve our misery."
PHRF is a diverse coalition of organizations formed to aid the victims of Katrina. New Orleanian Malcolm Suber, a longtime activist who is now based in the Houston area, is a PHRF founder and board member. He is also one of the coordinators of the Youth Forum, Survivors Assembly and the March on New Orleans, scheduled for Dec. 8-10… The Peoples' Hurricane Relief Fund can be contacted at 2812 Live Oak by calling (713) 751-7990 or toll free 1-888-310-7473. Among the Houston-based organizations that have been supporting evacuees and will be going to New Orleans are the National Black United Front, New Black Panther Party, Nation of Islam Muhammad Mosque #45, Millions More Movement Local Organizing Committee and the S.H.A.P.E. Community Center."
Cracking down on dissent 12/7/2005 SF Bay View: "“Morehouse police beat up civil rights leader and elder Mukasa Dada, formerly known as Willie Ricks of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, on Thursday, Nov. 10, at Morehouse College,” reports www.assatashakur.org/1205.htm…. I’ve seen two disturbing reports of examples of administration reactionaries on the campuses of two historically Black universities. In one incident, several students at Hampton University were threatened with expulsion for handing out fliers in support of a rally scheduled for Nov. 2."
New Orleans Now: Bay Area volunteers share shocking stories 12/7/2005 SF Bay View: "“The interesting thing about going down is that there’s almost nothing happening on the ground, except what the grassroots is doing. The Common Ground Collective is about the only group on the ground doing anything. There are almost no city workers. When I see them, they look like little ants on a mountain of destruction. The National Guard is roaming the streets in humvees. They drive by and you want to say, ‘Get out and start working.’”
Perplexed by the useless activities of the National Guard, Dedrick, who is volunteering in honor of her mother, an activist and artist who passed away five years ago, asked a national guardsman about his work. She was told the National Guard was in the fourth phase of a national recovery program.
“The first, second, third and fourth stages are patrolling. They’re patrolling what? It’s a ghost town. The fifth phase is the clean up, which will start in January. But then, that will only be done by the Louisiana National Guard. The other units are pulling out. We (Common Ground Collective) were able to do 30 houses and give out food. It was a lot, but that’s nothing,” compared to the work that remains.
“I couldn’t be more disgusted,” she adds, about the hidden agenda of some involved in the reclamation of the city. “There’s no mistake. It is ethnic cleansing … just the fact there is no electricity. What is that? No schools. No electricity and hot water. How much work is down there? An endless amount of work, and residents can’t get jobs. Where are the jobs?”" [discusses housing situation]
Baltimore guards beat Raymond Smoot to death 12/7/2005 SF Bay View: "On the Prisoners of Conscience Committee National Tour during the month of October, we passed through Baltimore and met with Mrs. Conway, the wife of Black Panther political prisoner Eddie Conway, and Donnetta Kidd, the niece of Raymond Smoot, who was beaten to death by Baltimore’s most notorious gang, correctional officers at Baltimore Central Booking, the city’s intake jail."
Battered by Katrina, Gulf Coast workers stand up 12/7/2005 SF Bay View
Katrina victims blame racism for slow aid - Emotions flare as black survivors testify before special House panel 12/6/2005 NBC
Angola, A Great Cuban Deed 12/3/2005 Prensa Latina: "Cuba sent thousands of voluntary combatants to attend the birth of an African republic, from whence thousands of slaves had come centuries before to contribute in forming the Cuban nation, he emphasized.
He called to mind that, during the last days of that valiant endeavor, the threat of use of atomic weapons by the white invading army made it necessary to fill the lock of a dam with dynamite near the offensive army´s barracks.
In case of an atomic attack the answer would have been a devastating crash of 3.8 billion cubic feet of water, he said.
The origin of the atomic weapons was not known, although the then-South African regime had such weaponry unaccounted for later."
Miamigate? 12/1/2005 Progresso Weekly: "If you pull Álvarez's string, you can follow it all the way to the White House. We might then assume that this is not a "strategy" of the government but of its opponents, as happened in the other "gates."
Evidently, the Bush administration is facing an opposition that's sitting on the heart of the system, and the reason for this is the failure of the war in Iraq. ...There is nothing more compromising for the credibility of the "war on terrorism" than the connection between the administration and the Miami terrorists, and that's something the administration's foes know well. Until recently, the government had managed to sweep the Posada affair under a rug, but its inefficiency and disrespect for public opinion have been so blatant that it seems the federal prosecutors were left to their own devices, to sink or swim.
Only that can explain the lack of criticism that met Posada's illegal entry to the United States, his "clandestine" presence in Miami, the manipulation of a hearing where the prosecutor accepted the defense's arguments without a peep, and where the judge was a government employee.
These things can happen with a strong government that enjoys the complicity of powerful groups but not with a lame-duck president like George W. Bush, so I smell a trap in the impunity.
I have no idea who ordered the detention of Santiago Álvarez, but I tend to think it was not the government. Maybe they found out too late, or couldn't prevent the arrest without digging themselves into a deeper hole.
They might even be able to control the damage. But if they cannot, Bush's "gate" will be memorable. Cuban Americans in Miami are his best stronghold; the day he does not rule them in Miami is the day he does not rule anywhere else."