At the movies, London: THE YES MEN FIX THE WORLD



Plus Satellite Q&A with a Panel Including The Yes Men and Cabaret Voltaire Singer Stephen Mallinder

Tuesday 11 August, 8.30

The Ritzy Cinema, Brixton

Directors: Andy Bichlbaum, Mike Bonanno. France/USA 2009. 90 mins.

Sheffield Doc/Fest, in partnership with Picturehouse DOCS and Dogwoof, invite you to a special screening of THE YES MEN FIX THE WORLD, including a live satellite Q&A with The Yes Men themselves.

A documentary following a couple of gonzo political activists, armed with nothing but charity-store suits, as they infiltrate the world of big business.

They smuggle out stories that are shocking and hilarious, and pull off outrageous pranks that highlight the ways in which corporate greed is destroying the planet!

Book online or on 0871 704 2065

Palestinians forced to seek work in Israel By Joseph Krauss

19 July, 2009 — AFP

JERUSALEM — Every day they sneak into Israel by the dozens under the eyes of the soldiers at checkpoints — a stream of Palestinian labourers from the occupied West Bank desperate for work.

“We are always looking for new methods — if the Israelis crack down on refrigerated lorries we use ambulances, if they start stopping ambulances we use hearses,” says Abu Ali, a smuggler who granted a rare interview to AFP on the condition his real name and the name of his village be kept quiet.

Sometimes it’s a simple question of timing — Abu Ali claims he once sneaked 97 workers across in the luggage compartment of a bus because it passed through a checkpoint at dusk, when the sun was in the soldiers’ eyes.

The covert commute testifies to the economic despair in the occupied West Bank and calls into question Israel’s claim that its controversial separation barrier keeps Palestinians from entering clandestinely.

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The Viva Palestina Series- Breaking the Siege By Salma Elshakre

More reports from the Viva Palestina US Convoy

We spent the days after the Peace Bridge incident finishing the “required” paper work and negotiating with the Egyptian Ministry of Internal Affairs to reach an agreement on time to be spent in Gaza, what we can take with us, and to let all members of the convoy cross into Gaza.  Mr. George Galloway and Councilman Charles Baron made a great effort to come up with a good pact with the Ministry and tried to get the most out of them.  At the end, we were only allowed 24 hours in Gaza and they promised that all convoy members would enter as well as all the medical aid.  They denied the entry of the 47 trucks that we purchased in Alexandria and they still have them at the port.

We were waiting on the Ministry’s approval to proceed to Gaza for days; we were ready to leave the minute we get the okay.  Finally on the 15th of July we got the approval at 12:30 am, we tried to begin our journey to Gaza at 3 am.  We got a bus at about 4 am and were waiting on three other buses to come finally at about 8 am, the first bus left with the first group of delegates and they head out to Rafah where they waited for the rest of us to join.

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23 July, 2009 — MEDIA LENS: Correcting for the distorted vision of the corporate media

Closing The Loop

The “big beasts” of the pre-digital media age are in big trouble, the Guardian tells us. In the last year, they have faced, not only structural challenges but the worst recession for a generation:

“As advertising revenues dried up, newspaper, television and radio owners – especially those in local media – faced a stark challenge: adapt or die.

“The result was tens of thousands of job losses and unprecedented uncertainty over how the media landscape will look in just a few years’ time. How many national newspapers will survive? Can commercial radio avoid complete meltdown? How much are people prepared to pay for content online – if at all?” (

At the heart of the uncertainty lies the internet and how to make it pay. For 100 years the corporate mass media has flourished thanks to its monopoly of the means of mass communication. Reviewing the history of the British media, James Curran and Jean Seaton write that the industrialisation of the press in the early twentieth century triggered “a progressive transfer of power from the working class to wealthy businessmen, while dependence on advertising encouraged the absorption or elimination of the early radical press and stunted its subsequent development before the First World War.” (Curran and Seaton, Power Without Responsibility – The Press and Broadcasting in Britain, Routledge, Fourth Edition, 1991, p.47)

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Nicaragua: An unfinished revolution – 17 July, 2009 – Part 1

Al Jazeera’s Lucia Newman visits Nicaragua and speaks with former combatants and leaders in the country’s civil conflict and to ordfinary citizens about how their lives have been impacted by 30 years of broken promises from across the political spectrum.

more about “Al Jazeera English – Programmes – An …“, posted with vodpod

Part Two | Part Three | Part Four

On July 19, 1979, massive crowds flooded the square now known as Plaza de la Revolucion in the Nicaraguan capital Managua to celebrate the success of the revolution that overthrew one of the most brutal dictatorships in the region. The Sandinistas, headed by Daniel Ortega, emerged victorious from a bitter conflict that had left tens of thousands of people dead promising social justice and freedom. They launched a revolutionary project unprecedented in Central America, but their socialist policies, close alignment with communist Cuba and suspicions they were assisting Marxist rebels in neighbouring El Salvador concerned the US which had long-influenced government in Nicaragua. Washington responded by funding counter-revolutionaries from the former national guard of the deposed dictator, Anastasio Somoza Debayle known as Contras. A bitter civil conflict ensued only two years after the revolution which lasted until 1990 when a war-weary public handed the Sandinistas a heavy defeat in elctions.

Broken promises
Seventeen years on and Daniel Ortega was once more in power but Nicaragua remains one of the poorest countries in the Western hemisphere. Despite still portraying himself as a revolutionary Ortega himself is now accused of being as conservative in his policies as the governments that succeeded him in the 1990s. Many of the former Sandinista leadership are now critical of the president saying he has abandoned his original aims and compromised the principles of the Sandinista revolution.

Felipe Stuart Cournoyer, "Honduras: The Hour of the Grassroots "

22 July, 2009 — MRZine – Monthly Review

Three weeks after the June 28 military coup that expelled Honduran President Mel Zelaya and claimed to overthrow his government, the country remains shaken by a profound and dynamic popular upsurge demanding Zelaya’s return and the restoration of democracy.

The collapse on July 18 of the much-touted ‘negotiation dialogue’ between Zelaya’s government delegation and representatives of the military coup was all but inevitable.

The talks foundered on the one issue that neither side could agree to discuss or give ground on: who is the constitutional president of Honduras?

Mass resistance and even opinion polls show that a strong majority of Hondurans back Zelaya as their elected president and demand his immediate return. The coup has been denounced by all the relevant international organizations: the ALBA Alliance, the Central American Integration System (SICA), the Rio Group, the Organization of American States (OAS), the European Union, and the United Nations.

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“My Hell in an Israeli Jail”: Israel Prison Population 90 Percent Black Africans By Voice Online, UK

22 July, 2009 — Black Agenda Report

israel-jail.jpgIt should come as no surprise that a settler state based on the rule of one ethnic group would be steeped in racist public policies. But the sheer scope of Israel’s institutional oppression of Africans shocked human rights activists imprisoned for attempting to deliver humanitarian assistance to Palestinians in Gaza. ‘The first day I was there, I witnessed 500 Africans scooped from the streets of Tel Aviv thrown into prison,’ said a Black British activist. ‘The prison population continues to grow daily with Africans falling victim to the Israeli judiciary system.’

‘Africans, like Palestinians, are being persecuted by the Israeli government.’

Black British filmmaker Ishmahil Blagrove has launched an outspoken attack against the ‘racist’ Israeli government after being abducted from the high seas and imprisoned for seven days.

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22 July, 2009 Video Free Gaza News Hedy Epstein

This Free Gaza video is an interview with a great woman, Hedy Epstein, just turned 85. She has dedicated her life to working for peace and human rights. In June she was going to sail to Gaza with the other 21 volunteers on board the Spirit of Humanity. But she was attacked just days before she was to leave for Cyprus. She was walking home, when she was thrown on the ground, cutting both knees and gashing her chin. She talks to us from her home in St. Louis, Missouri. Here is her interview and why she believes she must continue to advocate for justice for Palestine.