BBC NEWS | Americas | Chavez proposes oil barter scheme


[Interesting little nugget here from the ‘inventors of spin’, the BBC, that I thought was worth sharing with you. The fact it’s reported at all and so directly, reveals just how central energy is to big capital’s activities and when a bunch off brown-skinned fellas start mucking about with it, there’s normally hell to pay by somebody, somewhere.

The Beeb reminds of this in the first sentence just in case we forget that Chavez and Fidel are Commies joined at the hip so-to-speak, ‘it’s them damn Commies again, won’t they ever go away?’

Elsewhere, I read that com Chavez wears Louis Vuitton (sp?) suits, well why not, he’s the prez. You don’t hear anybody making a big deal about who makes Blair’s suits and how much they cost do you? Why shouldn’t the man look cool, he represents his country and does a damn sight better job of it than that gringo up el norte way.

And right at the end of the snippet, icing on the cake you might say, we find out that super-model Naomi Campbell turned up in Cienfuegos, Cuba, hanging out with them damn Commies! How rive gauche can one get? The Ed]

Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela is a close ally of Cuba

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has said Central American and Caribbean states could pay for oil with services or products like bananas and sugar.

Speaking in Cuba at the regional Petrocaribe summit of oil consumers and exporters, Mr Chavez said they were creating a ‘new geopolitics of oil’.

The group is not at the service of ‘imperialism and capitalists’, he said.

Continue reading

The End Of Israel? By Hannah Mermelstein

The End Of Israel? By Hannah Mermelstein*

22 December, 2007
The Electronic Intifada

I am feeling optimistic about Palestine.

I know it sounds crazy. How can I use ‘optimistic’ and ‘Palestine’ in the same sentence when conditions on the ground only seem to get worse? Israeli settlements continue to expand on a daily basis, the checkpoints and segregated road system are becoming more and more institutionalized, more than 10,000 Palestinian political prisoners are being held in Israeli jails, Gaza is under heavy attack and the borders are entirely controlled by Israel, preventing people from getting their most basic human needs met.

Continue reading


MEDIA LENS: Correcting for the distorted vision of the corporate media

December 18, 2007

News that British schoolteacher Gillian Gibbons had been jailed in Sudan after allowing her pupils to call a teddy bear Mohammed fed straight into the UK media’s hate factory and its “war for civilisation”.

The Gibbons story was mentioned in a massive 257 articles in UK national newspapers in the first week, providing an excuse to boost claims of “genocide” in Sudan in 10 of these.

Continue reading

Trying to Square the Climate Circle By William Bowles

16 December 2007

Sink or Swim – The ‘choice’ apparently, is yours, according to Hilary Benn, but only if you can breath under water and swim

Here, in the UK we have a minister for the environment, Hilary Benn is his name, son of doyen of the ‘left’ of the Labour Party, Anthony Wedgwood-Benn, whose swings from right to left are by now legendary (he’s currently stuck somewhere on what passes for the left).

Continue reading

RAWA.ORG: The US and Her Fundamentalist Stooges are the Main Human Rights Violators in Afghanistan (Dec.10, 2007)

RAWA.ORG: The US and Her Fundamentalist Stooges are the Main Human Rights Violators in Afghanistan (Dec.10, 2007)

baghlan_child.jpgThe US and her allies tried to legitimize their military occupation of Afghanistan under the banner of ‘bringing freedom and democracy for Afghan people’. But as we have experienced in the past three decades, in regard to the fate of our people, the US government first of all considers her own political and economic interests and has empowered and equipped the most traitorous, anti-democratic, misogynist and corrupt fundamentalist gangs in Afghanistan.

Continue reading

Anti-Empire Report By William Blum, December 11, 2007

Anti-Empire Report, December 11, 2007: “The Anti-Empire Report
Read this or George W. Bush will be president the rest of your life

December 11, 2007
by William Blum

Another peace scare. Boy, that was close.

The US intelligence community’s new National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) — ‘Iran: Nuclear Intentions and Capabilities’ — makes a point of saying up front (in bold type): ‘This NIE does not (italics in original) assume that Iran intends to acquire nuclear weapons.’ The report goes on to state: ‘We judge with high confidence that in fall 2003, Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program.’

Isn’t that good news, that Iran isn’t about to attack the United States or Israel with nuclear weapons? Surely everyone is thrilled that the horror and suffering that such an attack — not to mention an American or Israeli retaliation or pre-emptive attack — would bring to this sad old world. Here are some of the happy reactions from American leaders:

Continue reading

Media Lens: The Faceless and the Dead – The Guardian and Iraq’s Refugees

MEDIA LENS: Correcting for the distorted vision of the corporate media

December 6, 2007

“See The World Through Their Eyes”

For several months now, non-UK visitors accessing the Guardian website have been shown an endlessly revolving animation in three segments that would not look out of place on FAIR, ZNet, or indeed Media Lens.

The first segment depicts a blue-eyed man wearing glasses with images of anti-war demonstrators reflected in the glasses. The protestors are carrying a banner that reads: “End The War NOW!” It instantly recalls the enormous February 15, 2003 anti-war march in London.

Continue reading

Empty Calories of Economic Growth and the Battle for Participatory Democracy—Latin America's New Middle Class – Council on Hemispheric Affairs

Empty Calories of Economic Growth and the Battle for Participatory Democracy—Latin America’s New Middle Class – Council on Hemispheric Affairs

The past two decades have witnessed a series of political and economic rollercoaster rides all over Latin America. However, with economic ‘stability’ being used as a tagline for positive growth and suitable political fervor, a novel way of life has been emerging that is affecting millions of citizens who now consider themselves members of a new middle class. This ‘Great Global Middle Class’ has been illuminated perhaps more brightly in Latin America than anywhere else, due to its longstanding and hard-fought struggle with income inequality and socially repressive regimes.

Continue reading

Bolivia Rising: The Battle in Bolivia: 'New Left' President Evo Morales Faces Opposition to New Constitution

Bolivia Rising: The Battle in Bolivia: ‘New Left’ President Evo Morales Faces Opposition to New Constitution

Roger Burbach, Dec 01, 2007
While international attention is focusing on President Hugo Chavez and the Sunday referendum on the Venezuelan constitution, a conflict that is just as profound is shaking Bolivia. Evo Morales, the first Indian president of the country, is forcing a showdown with the oligarchy and the right wing political parties that have stymied efforts to draft a new constitution to transform the nation. He declares, ‘Dead or alive I will have a new constitution for the country by December 14,’ the mandated date for the specially elected Constituent Assembly to present a constitution for the country to vote on by popular referendum.

Continue reading

Which way is up? by William Bowles

3 December 2007

A major blight of the ‘Left’, at least in my experience, is that it spends more time in-fighting than out. Why this should be so I’ll leave up to the psychoanalysts (or perhaps anthropologists?) to explain but it is surely a legacy we could well do without. My feeling is that is has a lot to with the ‘messianic’ nature of the Left, which has more in common with religion than with political economy.

And of course it’s a trait that’s well exploited by capital and its mouthpieces, witness for example the furoré the MSM has had with el presidente Chavez and his attempts (and no doubt others around him) to alter the Venezuelan constitution, giving the president some pretty awesome powers (for a democratic socialist) including sweeping emergency powers and extending his term of office (indefinitely?).

Continue reading