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Lesson to Be Learned from State Suppression of Revolutionaries

A Review of Heavy Radicals: The FBI's Secret War on America's Maoists

We should go to the masses and learn from them, synthesize their experience into better, articulated principles and methods, then do propaganda among the masses, and call upon them to put these principles and methods into practice so as to solve their problems and help them achieve liberation and happiness.

— Mao Zedong (p. 106)

According to the above translation, it appears as though Mao sees himself and his Chinese Communist Party (CCP) comrades as outside the masses. That, however, is inconsequential to the fact that …

Who’s Still Afraid of 9/11 “Conspiracy Theories”?

The lady doth protest too much, methinks.

—Queen Gertrude, Hamlet

Whenever someone insists too strongly about something not being true, we tend to suspect that maybe it is. In their denials of involvement in 9/11, do Israel’s apologists “protest too much”?

While it would take a small book to adequately document the Israeli connection to 9/11—as editor Justin Raimondo attempted to some extent in The Terror Enigma—let us briefly recall some of the more intriguing facts as reported in the mainstream media, involving dancing Israelis, Odigo warnings, and Zim’s timely move.

The story of the five Israelis who were seen celebrating and …

‘Tis the Season for Selling War

From a marketing point of view, you don’t introduce new products in August.

– Andrew Card, White House Chief of Staff, 2002

The best time to introduce a new product, as Card well understood, comes just after Labor Day.  And when it comes to a new “product” to be marketed to the American public, there’s never been anything quite like a new war — that most prolific of American exports.
For the Bush neocons, the public campaign to sell the 2003 invasion of Iraq to the American public was thus strategically launched in September 2002; an astute adherence to the same schedule …

“Days of Grace” Sets Unified Pace for Southern Resistance

Over 800 gathered in the city of Charleston, S.C., September 5-6 for the Days of Grace Mass March and Strategy Conference against racism and for economic justice. Activists, organizers and attendees traveled from all over the United States. Guest speaker, Clarence Thomas, of the International Longshore Workers Union Local 10, came in from Oakland, Calif. Several of their Bay Area leading organizers all journeyed together from West to East, including dock workers all the way from Seattle.

National activist, DeRay McKesson came in from St. Louis, MO. Organizers with the Fight for $15 pressed their way from as far …

Huffington Post Arabic and the Absurdity of “Liberal” Expectations

What does it mean to be a ‘liberal Arab’? Even in the West, definitions of the ‘liberal’ vary.

In the American context, the demarcation of the ‘liberal’ overlaps cultural and political lines. Republicans use the term in a derogatory way to describe their opponents. Watch Fox News to understand. (On second thought, please do not watch Fox News!). Europeans are hardly keen on the term altogether. Many often use the term ‘progressive’ to liberate the ‘liberal’ from its political baggage and imprecise cultural insinuations.

So when the newly-launched Huffington Post Arabi – the Arabic edition of …

Why is Cornel West Sheep-Dogging for the Democrats Again?

Rosa Clemente, who ran for Vice President with Cynthia McKinney in 2008, reminds us that Cornel West and many other notable left activists and intellectuals who have given lip-service to the need for an independent left politics in the U.S., dutifully lined-up to give their support to Barack Obama.  For many of these leftists, the rationale offered to support the Democrat candidate wasn’t even about the traditional “lesser of two evils,” but a strange belief that somehow this individual, selected and pushed by powerful forces within the liberal democrat establishment and some defectors from the Clinton DLC wing of the …

Democratic Party’s “Democratic Values” Omit Democratic Process

Rigging nominations may or not win elections, but it’s despicable

The Democratic Party is showing some ugly faces these days, as entrenched party leaders find both their president and much of their constituency headed in directions that the “party” disapproves. From Sen. Chuck Schumer choosing to risk war to Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz stifling supporters of her party’s president and the peace deal with Iran, to the insurgent candidacies of Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley, party leaders find themselves leading toward goals widely rejected by others.
This is actually a hopeful sign – that there’s resistance. But the struggle to define …

Love and Dementia

Sharing a Personal Perspective

So I finally received the call I’d been dreading for years. It was about mom, of course. She’d been suffering from an illness under that quasi medical rubric “dementia” for at least nine years. That’s back when she started repeating herself noticeably, voluntarily giving up her drivers license and not helping pack for the big move to Costa Rica because the task confused her. For nine years the disease progressed relentlessly, shredding and collapsing her short, intermediate, and long term memory stacks – essentially everything that made her the extraordinary woman she was. The fortitude, commitment, …

Nasty Legacies

It was amusing to see Peter Baker refer to the Democratic Party legislators’ threat to President Obama’s possible “legacy” of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), often described in the media as a “free trade” agreement, although Baker here makes it only a “trade: deal” (“A Trade Deal And a Legacy,” New York Times, June 15, 2015). “Legacy” is commonly (but not invariably) used as a purr word, that expresses approval of an act or action (in contrast with a snarl or growl word), something nice one has left to posterity like a gift of property or a beneficially transforming piece of …

Canada’s Gunboat Diplomacy

Former Prime Minister Kim Campbell once said “an election is no time to discuss important issues.” But surely the opportunity to free up $40 billion while making the world a safer place ought to spark a discussion about the Canadian Navy’s role in the world.

Four years ago the Conservatives announced the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy, a $30-$40 billion effort to expand the combat fleet over three decades. But, the initiative is stalled and this is a perfect time to consider other priorities, such as putting the money into a national daycare program, building co-op/public housing, investing it in light rail …

The Refugee Crisis and the New Holocaust

The world has suddenly realised that there is a “refugee crisis”. There are more refugees now than at any time since World War II. The number has grown three-fold since the end of 2001. The problem is treated as if it arose just recently, but it has been a long time coming. The pressure has been building and building until it has burst the dams of wilful ignorance.

Death and despair has migrated to the doorsteps of Europe. But tens of millions of people do not simply abandon home and native land for an insecure dangerous future of desperate struggle. The …

Intermezzo in the Inferno

Sometimes so much electronic data has been configured and processed from keystroke to platform software (one used to say “ink spilled” but we already have a generation that has probably never seen ink, and certainly not in fluid form) that the written equivalent of a shout is necessary. When the chattering becomes loud enough, one can scarcely avoid the breach of good manners by yelling “shut up!”.

European mass media is broadcasting in every form the language and images designed to inflame the “white” population about a massive influx of refugees, mainly from the Middle East. The fact is that NATO …

The Murder of Dr Khaled al-Assad, Guardian of Palmyra

On Freedom’s tree there rained a withering blight,
Glory to proud Palmyra sighed adieu,
And o’er her shrines Destruction’s angel flew.
— Nicholas Michell, 1807-1880, Ruins of Many Lands

At a meeting of Foreign Ministers in Cairo in September 2002 the then Secretary General of the Arab League, Amr Moussa warned US President George W. Bush that the proposed invasion of Iraq would “open the gates of Hell … in the region.” Iraq and Syria would be the first to be engulfed in the fire.

German’s Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said it would be a “big mistake” for the United States to launch its …

Human Rights Applies to All

It’s no fun to be put in your place. It’s all the worse if you’re a big shot. Take it from the fly on the wall who watched it happen to the Asian Development Bank, the bagmen for Japanese bribes to Asian Security Council members. In retrospect, the rising sun had just begun to set. ADB came a cropper on the ground floor of the Bank of China (they don’t let foreigners upstairs.) Very good tea, insufficient time to savor it, as the whole thing was over in no time, a spanking and a bum’s rush. Pretensions popped more loudly …

The Imprudent Serpent

A Short Fable on the Amnesic Hypocrisy of the Republican Party

Once upon a time, there was a boorish rattlesnake named Donald. He was notorious for flashing his fangs at the other desert creatures. But some were slightly demented; in fact, they were charmed by the toxicity of Donald’s hypodermic fangs. Others slowly gravitated toward Donald with the passage of time. The lore surrounding his dangerous potential drew them ever near—even to the point of mental constriction, or paralysis.

Donald hadn’t any compunction. He was highly inegalitarian by nature, and he frequently hissed about the “vermin” he viewed as lesser amongst the desert fauna. Donald was especially mercurial about lashing out at …

The Measurement of Success

A vitally important remark appeared in a recent piece by the guys from the usually-excellent Media Lens. Their article was about media coverage of Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign for leadership of the Labour Party, and it opened with a reference to a recent column in The Times by Rachael Sylvester. Sylvester suggests that a victory by Jeremy Corbyn will render the Labour Party unelectable – a fairly common theme in Britain’s right-wing press, and a not uncommon opinion of many Labour Party supporters – especially the vociferous aristocracy of the so-called “new” Labour faction, anti-Corbynites such as – Blair, “Two …

The Two Faces of Capitalism and Left Options

Right-wing politics now dominate the globe. Broadly speaking, the Right can be divided into a US-centered right-wing bloc and a variety of anti-US right-wing regimes and social forces.

The US-centered right-wing includes absolutist monarchies, like Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States and Jordan; neoliberal electoral regimes and opposition parties in the European Union and Latin America and the military dictatorships of North and Sub-Sahara Africa and Thailand. Finally, there are US-armed and trained terrorists operating in Syria, Lebanon, and Yemen – which make up a kind of extra-parliamentary …

Fearing Mohács: Orbán’s Recipe for Refugees

Is it not worrying in itself that European Christianity is now barely able to keep Europe Christian?

— Viktor Orbán, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, September 3, 2015

The Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orbán, is getting his figures, and history, muddled.  In many contexts, history is often cited, less as an opportunity to inspire than to enrage and enforce a status quo. The better spirits of men and women are left behind, and in place, fear plays takes centre stage.

The human throngs making their way to various European transit points as of this writing have struck fear into the right wing Orbán government.  A …

Tripping on Trump?

Donald Trump is considered to be a plain-spoken, say-it-as-it-is, straight-talker, one who shoots from the hip. Media consistently describes him as a non-political candidate for president. Few mention that he is a celebrity who knows thoroughly the media ropes. And most evidence proves that he is anything but non-political, in fact, intelligent and quite media-savvy – always relentlessly on message, whatever he’s asked by reporters, never straying from his ascribed image nor from a pre-designated message.

Though more outspoken than conventional candidates, he is more attuned to the GOP-base, and appears unscripted. In effect, he is a more clever operator than …

The Doctrine of “Superior People”

The Bond between Israel and World Zionism

The single greatest feat of Israel and its overseas missions has not been material success, or the military conquest of millions of unarmed Palestinians, it has been ideological – the widespread acceptance in the US of a doctrine that claims ‘Jews are a superior people’.

Apart from small extremist right-wing sects who exhibit visceral anti-Semitism and denigrate everything Jewish, there are very few academics and politicians willing to question this supremacist doctrine. On the contrary, there is an incurable tendency to advance oneself by accepting and embellishing on it.