COPOUT15: It’s the poor wot gets the blame By William Bowles

21 December, 2009

It seems the ruling classes of the most powerful capitalist states just don’t learn any lessons from the past. It’s as if they wipe the slate clean every time they get us all in a jam and we have to relearn everything all over again! Why do we tolerate such bullshit from the gangster class that controls us?

And as sure as the Sun rises, the USUK has put all the blame on those ‘inscrutable’ Chinese for the ever-so predictable failure of COP15, “Energy Secretary Ed Miliband called it a “chaotic process”, singling out China for vetoing an agreement on emissions.” (‘Climate Summit held to Ransom’, BBC News, 21 December, 2009)

Fact: One-third of China’s industrial output is for export to the US (this is the one-third that used to be manufactured in the US).

The BBC however is very clear about the way forward, it’s called ‘green capitalism’:

‘The other very important change is that green growth is now the prevailing economic model of our time. The idea that addressing climate change is bad for business was buried at Copenhagen. Countries from both developed and developing worlds have announced low-carbon economic plans and are moving forward.’ — ‘What did the Copenhagen climate summit achieve?, BBC News, 21 December, 2009

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Video: US testing unproven weapons in Afghanistan

20 December, 2009

The US is developing new, expensive weapons and testing them on the battleground in Afghanistan. Is this the best idea? How can new weapons designed for conventional warfare be effective against an insurgency? And do unproven weapons put soldiers at risk?

more about “Video: US testing unproven weapons in…“, posted with vodpod

Shambles in Copenhagen By Greg Albo

21 December, 2009 — Socialist Project | The Bullet

The United Nations conference to address climate change in Copenhagen over the last week has illustrated several crucial features about the contemporary political setting, as Obama completes a year in power in the United States, NATO plots a military surge into the war setting spanning Palestine to Afghanistan and an economic recovery staggers along.

First, in the current balance of social forces in North America and globally, it is impossible to get committed political action to change the existing economic model of development. This is in the specific sense of a reform of the fossil fuel-dependent, outward-oriented, finance-led, labour-repressing economic model of neoliberal globalization; and in the larger sense of a rupture with the ecologically-destructive profit-driven system of capitalism.

Second, it is clear that despite the financial crisis of 2007-09, there has been no break with the power structures of neoliberalism: any interference in market relations to shift distributional relations (including the relations with how much humans withdraw from nature) is blocked (as opposed to government interventions to preserve the power of banks and financial capital); finance capital remains a central force backing the financialization and commodification of the environment; and that the U.S. state and imperialism remains at the core of global decision-making and the ordering of the relations between states. While there are cracks and some modulations in these power structures (notably, the rise of China, Brazil and India), there is no dramatic shifting in power alliances so as to open new vistas for alternate developments (although the interventions at Copenhagen of Bolivia, Venezuela – leaving aside some aspects of their own oil and gas policies for the moment – and others in the ALBA pact were notable for their insistence that an alternate path is more necessary than ever).

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Pentagon's Role in Global Catastrophe: Add Climate Havoc to War Crimes By Sara Flounders

19 December, 2009 — Global ResearchInternational Action Center – 2009-12-18

In evaluating the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen — with more than 15,000 participants from 192 countries, including more than 100 heads of state, as well as 100,000 demonstrators in the streets — it is important to ask: How is it possible that the worst polluter of carbon dioxide and other toxic emissions on the planet is not a focus of any conference discussion or proposed restrictions?

By every measure, the Pentagon is the largest institutional user of petroleum products and energy in general. Yet the Pentagon has a blanket exemption in all international climate agreements.

The Pentagon wars in Iraq and Afghanistan; its secret operations in Pakistan; its equipment on more than 1,000 U.S. bases around the world; its 6,000 facilities in the U.S.; all NATO operations; its aircraft carriers, jet aircraft, weapons testing, training and sales will not be counted against U.S. greenhouse gas limits or included in any count.

The Feb. 17, 2007, Energy Bulletin detailed the oil consumption just for the Pentagon’s aircraft, ships, ground vehicles and facilities that made it the single-largest oil consumer in the world. At the time, the U.S. Navy had 285 combat and support ships and around 4,000 operational aircraft. The U.S. Army had 28,000 armored vehicles, 140,000 High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles, more than 4,000 combat helicopters, several hundred fixed-wing aircraft and 187,493 fleet vehicles. Except for 80 nuclear submarines and aircraft carriers, which spread radioactive pollution, all their other vehicles run on oil.

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Israel admits harvesting Palestinian organs By Ian Black

20 December 2009 —

Israel has admitted that pathologists harvested organs from dead Palestinians, and others without the consent of their families – a practice that it said ended in the 1990s, it emerged at the weekend.

The admission, by the former head of the country’s forensic institute, followed a furious row prompted by a Swedish newspaper reporting that Israel was killing Palestinians in order to use their organs – a charge that Israel denied and called “antisemitic”.

The revelation, in a television documentary, is likely to generate anger in the Arab and Muslim world and reinforce sinister stereotypes of Israel and its attitude to Palestinians.  Iran’s state-run Press TV tonight reported the story, illustrated with photographs of dead or badly injured Palestinians.

Ahmed Tibi, an Israeli Arab MP, said the report incriminated the Israeli army.

The story emerged in an interview with Dr Yehuda Hiss, former head of the Abu Kabir forensic institute near Tel Aviv.  The interview was conducted in 2000 by an American academic who released it because of the row between Israel and Sweden over a report in the Stockholm newspaper Aftonbladet.

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September 11, 2001: America and NATO Declare War on Afghanistan By Michel Chossudovsky

21 December, 2009 — Global Research

NATO’s Doctrine of Collective Security

Why are American and NATO troops in Afghanistan?

What is the justification for waging war on a country of 28 million people?

What justifies Obama’s military surge?

Both the media and the US government, in chorus, continue to point to the 9/11 attacks and the role of Al Qaeda led by “terrorist mastermind” Osama bin Laden.

The bombing and invasion of Afghanistan is described as a “campaign” against Islamic terrorists, rather than a war.

To this date, however, there is no proof that Al Qaeda was behind the 9/11 attacks.

Neither is there evidence that Afghanistan as a Nation State was behind or any way complicit in the 9/11 attacks.

The Afghan government in the weeks following 9/11, offered on two occasions to deliver Osama bin Laden to US justice, if there were preliminary evidence of his involvement in the attacks. These offers were refused by Washington.

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The Truth About Copenhagen By Fidel Castro Ruz

19 December, 2009 — Climate and CapitalismCuba News

The truth can be stronger than the influenced and often misinformed minds of those holding in their hands the destiny of the world.

The youth is more interested than anyone else in the future. Until very recently, the discussion revolved around the kind of society we would have. Today, the discussion centers on whether human society will survive.

These are not dramatic phrases. We must get used to the true facts. Hope is the last thing human beings can relinquish. With truthful arguments, men and women of all ages, especially young people, have waged an exemplary battle at the Summit and taught the world a great lesson.

It is important now that Cuba and the world come to know as much as possible of what happened in Copenhagen. The truth can be stronger than the influenced and often misinformed minds of those holding in their hands the destiny of the world.

If anything significant was achieved in the Danish capital, it was that the media coverage allowed the world public to watch the political chaos created there and the humiliating treatment accorded to Heads of States or Governments, ministers and thousands of representatives of social movements and institutions that in hope and expectation traveled to the Summit’s venue in Copenhagen. The brutal repression of peaceful protesters by the police was a reminder of the behavior of the Nazi assault troops that occupied neighboring Denmark on April 1940.

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Copenhagen: A Turning Point for the Climate Movement By Terry Conway and Thomas Eisler

21 December, 2009 — Climate and CapitalismSocialist Resistance

The number of demonstrators on the streets of Copenhagen is a proof positive that it is possible to develop mass mobilisations on the issue of global warming

On Saturday Dec 12, 100,000 demonstrated in the streets of Copenhagen outside the COP 15 summit demanding urgent action against global warming – more than double the numbers that organisers had predicted – or even dared expect. While of course a high percentage of demonstrators came from Denmark itself and from neighbouring countries Sweden and Germany (where there is somewhat of a tradition of mobilising for each other’s events) – this was a truly international demonstration.

One of the biggest delegations from outside Denmark was the 850 strong special train organised by the Belgian organisation, Climate Social Justice, which brought activists not only from Belgium but from France and Britain too in an epic journey which took more than 12 hours each way but facilitated a broader participation – and more international discussion – than would otherwise have been possible.

While the delegations from the countries from the Global South were necessarily smaller than those from the Europe their presence was warmly welcomed – and the popular slogan of Climate Justice Now was clearly seen by most protestors as meaning the leaders of the rich countries needed to listen to the demands of the global south – and was also seen as one of the essential demands of the day.

Indeed the radicality of the slogans which dominated a mobilisation which involved most of the large non-governmental organisations as well as more radical sections of the climate justice movement was noteworthy.

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Hugo Chavez: A Battle for the Planet Has Begun

20 December, 2009 — Climate and Capitalism

‘Copenhagen is not the end, I repeat, but a beginning: the doors have been opened for a universal debate on how to save the planet, life on the planet. The battle continues.’

By Hugo Chávez Frías
President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela
translated by Kiraz Janicke for Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal


Copenhagen was the scene of a historic battle in the framework of the 15th Conference of the United Nations Convention on Climate Change (COP15). Better said, in the beautiful, snowy capital of Denmark, a battle began that did not end on Friday, December 18, 2009. I reiterate: Copenhagen was only the beginning of a decisive battle for the salvation of the planet. It was a battle in the realm of ideas and in praxis.

Brazilian Leonardo Boff, a great liberation theologian and one of the most authoritative voices on environmental issues, in a key article, entitled ‘What is at stake in Copenhagen?’, wrote these words full of insight and courage:

What can we expect from Copenhagen? At least this simple confession: We cannot continue like this. And a simple proposition: Let’s change course.

And for that reason, precisely, we went to Copenhagen to battle for a change of course on behalf of Venezuela, on behalf of the Bolivarian Alliance (ALBA), and moreover, in defence of the cause of humanity and to speak, with President Evo Morales, in defence of the rights of Pachamama, of Mother Earth.

Evo, who together with yours truly, had the responsibility to be a spokesperson for the Bolivarian Alliance, wisely said: What this debate is about, is whether we are going to live or we are going to die.

All eyes of the world were concentrated on Copenhagen: the 15th Conference on Climate Change allowed us to gauge the fibre we are made of, where hope lies and what can we do to establish what the Liberator Simón Bolívar defined as the equilibrium of the universe, an equilibrium that can never be achieved within the capitalist world system.

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