Tarpley & Escobar: China to blame or to admire?

22 October, 2010 — RT.com

China’s rate of development on a global scale is moving faster and more consistently the other nations. Should the world take note of the Chinese economic system? Many Americans and US politicians are blaming China for the recession and for taking American jobs, while others say we should look to chain and immolate their system. Pepe Escobar, a correspondent for the Asia Times said China is not to blame; instead the US itself is to blame. Nations like Great Britain choose to cut spending and jobs to rise from a deficit, the US simply prints more money. “What we are seeing is that the free trade countries, the British and the US are basically basket cases. The Chinese have had the good sense to follow traditional forms of mercantilism, dirigisme and protectionism,” said Webster Tarpley, a journalist.

Tarpley & Escobar: China to blame or to admire?

22 October, 2010 — RT.com

China’s rate of development on a global scale is moving faster and more consistently the other nations. Should the world take note of the Chinese economic system? Many Americans and US politicians are blaming China for the recession and for taking American jobs, while others say we should look to chain and immolate their system. Pepe Escobar, a correspondent for the Asia Times said China is not to blame; instead the US itself is to blame. Nations like Great Britain choose to cut spending and jobs to rise from a deficit, the US simply prints more money. “What we are seeing is that the free trade countries, the British and the US are basically basket cases. The Chinese have had the good sense to follow traditional forms of mercantilism, dirigisme and protectionism,” said Webster Tarpley, a journalist.

Engdahl on France: Cutting pensions instead of military spendings?

22 October, 2010 — RT.com

French police have broken the blockade of a refinery crucial for the capital’s fuel supplies. A workers union that captured the depot said at least three people were injured in the clashes. A special operation ended the blockade that had lasted for more than a week, causing significant fuel shortages. Meanwhile, the Senate is expected to approve president Nicolas Sarkozy’s proposal to raise the retirement age to 62 – the reason behind the protests. Frederick William Engdahl, an American writer and journalist based in Germany, questions the reform saying it could be aimed at protecting tiny elite in France.

Wikileaks: garbage in, garbage out

23 October, 2010 — Left I on the News

It goes without saying that there’s lots of good information in the latest Wikileaks document dump. First-hand reports by the soldiers involved of killing of civilians at checkpoints, for example. But there’s also more than a fair dose of ‘garbage in, garbage out,’ because the source for all the material is the U.S. military, and the U.S. military is nothing if not self-serving.

One example is the reported increase in civilian deaths caused by the invasion of Iraq. The basic report, that the U.S. was lying through its teeth when it claimed not to do body counts, demonstrates for the umpteenth time how much trust one can place in the pronouncements of the U.S. military (i.e., none). But as noted in the Guardian, the lying continues even in these reports, because these reports record a grand total of zero civilian casualties in the two assaults on Fallujah, a laughable claim. And, as we know from years of observation, the U.S. military routinely records every possible death it can as ‘enemy’ rather than civilian, in a classic case of ‘guilty until proven innocent,’ even when those deaths include reporters.

A second example, now widely reported and no doubt instant conventional wisdom, is that the three American hikers were arrested in Iraqi territory. But if you look closely, the ‘evidence’ for that is essentially non-existent. Secret aerial footage? Nothing of the sort. Just a report from some Iraqi colonel. But was he there? No, the only people who claim to have witnessed the capture claimed that, from some unspecified distance (but not too close because they were ‘following’ the hikers, and clearly not close enough that the three knew they were being followed), managed to ‘know’ that the three were ‘several yards’ on the wrong side of an unmarked border. Please.

Then we have the also widely reported claims that Iran has been extensively involved with the war in Iraq. Even the Washington Post was obliged to note, though, that ‘The Guardian noted that sources for some of the reports on Iran were described as ‘untested or of low reliability.” That’s quite an understatement, though. Because if you read the extensive analysis in the Guardian of the alleged Iranian involvement, you’ll find that virtually every example is based on hearsay and conjecture. Here’s a typical paragraph:

A week later, on 7 November 2005, an intelligence report says the IRGC smuggled 12 boxes of ammunition and two boxes of rockets to unknown individuals in Amara, a city close to the border in south-east Iraq where Britain had the lead responsibility within the multinational coalition. The rockets are possibly surface-to-air missiles, the report says. But the source does not know the intended recipients of the munitions, the log admits, and does not make clear whether he saw the shipments or only heard about them.

Caveat emptor!

The secret war between Wikileaks and the Pentagon, (and some media outlets) By Danny Schechter

25 October, 2010 — Mediachannel.org

It happened on a Friday, the anniversary of the first US casualties of the Vietnam War way back in 1957. It was also the anniversary, in 1964, of French philosopher Jean Paul Sartre’s announcement that he was turning down the Nobel Prize. He later sat as a judge on Bertrand Russell’s Vietnam War Crimes Tribunal, which indicted that conflict’s carnage and lies.

It was the day this year that the often shadowy Wikileaks, chief nemesis of the Pentagon, maybe their worst nightmare—considered perhaps even more dangerous than the Taliban– surfaced again with the largest public drop of secret military documents in history. Wikileaks is a public web site run by the Sunshine Press, a non-profit group.

For understandable reasons, the Pentagon is at war with its information war against the war—literally.

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The Revolt Shaking France

25 October, 2010 — The B u l l e t – Socialist Project • E-Bulletin No. 423

Strikes and protests have spread to every corner of France as President Nicolas Sarkozy pushes for a final vote in parliament on his proposal to ‘reform’ the country’s national pension system.

Every day last week has seen strikes, blockades and demonstrations. Police attempted to break up blockades at oil refineries and supply facilities after weeks of oil workers and their supporters stopping fuel deliveries, but the actions frequently resumed after police left. Almost all of the country’s ports are still struck – according to reports, 52 oil tankers are at anchor off the coast of Marseilles, still waiting to unload.

The biggest actions have come when the unions have called nationwide strikes, but rolling walkouts and protests continue every day. This week, police have lashed back at youth demonstrators, fighting running battles in cities around the country – with the media parroting Sarkozy’s denunciations of “lawbreakers.”

Sarkozy’s proposal would raise the minimum age for retirement from 60 to 62 and the age when retirees can get full benefits from 65 to 67. The measure was passed by the country’s Assembly and is being considered in the Senate – a vote was scheduled for October 20, but was delayed, though the Sarkozy government insists one will take place soon. Even if the measure passes, however, more protests are already planned, including at least two nationwide strikes and days of action at the end of October and early November.

This revolt is the latest in a wave of struggles that have rocked France over more than a decade, dating back to a wave of public-sector strikes in 1995 that stopped a conservative government from imposing changes to the pension system.

Charles-André Udry is editor of the magazine La Brèche and the web site À L’encontre, a veteran of the socialist movement in Europe and a member of the Movement for Socialism in Switzerland. He talked earlier this week to Ahmed Shawki, editor of the International Socialist Review, about the issues at stake and the prospects for the struggle that is shaking France.


Millions of people took to the streets across FranceMillions of people took to the streets across France during days of action to protest Sarkozy’s pension plan (Serge Grosclaude).

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26 October, 2010 Following the leak by w…

26 October, 2010

assange-frontline.jpg

Following the leak by whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks of almost 400,000 secret US army field reports from the Iraq war between 2004 and 2009. Join Julian Assange at the Frontline Club this evening in conversation with one of the most famous whistle blowers in history, Daniel Ellsberg who was responsible for the leak of the Pentagon Papers in 1971.

The discussion will be chaired by Elizabeth Palmer, CBS News correspondent.

LIMITED SPACE AVAILABLE. To book tickets please see here.

We will also be broadcasting the event live from 7pm on Livestation

Note: I couldn’t get through to the Frontline site to find out what the date is!

VTJP Palestine/Israel Newslinks 24 October, 2010: Settlers Flood Palestinian Village With Sewage

24 October, 2010 — VTJP

News

International Middle East Media Center

Israeli Soldiers Continue Their Facebook Displays
IMEMC – 24 Oct 2010 – Monday October 25, 2010 – 00:51, The Israeli Walla News website published on Sunday several pictures published by Israeli soldiers on Facebook showing “memories” while humiliating Palestinians during the war on Gaza.

Army Installs Two Roadblocks Near Salfit
IMEMC – 24 Oct 2010 – Sunday October 24, 2010 – 15:57, On Sunday afternoon,Israeli soldiers installed two military roadblocks at the crossroads of the town of Hares and at the entrance of the town of Deir Estia, near the West Bank city of Salfit.

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