NATO: Exercising the Bear in Georgia

NATO exercises provoke Russia
by TRNN
The Real News Network spoke to William F. Engdahl, economist and author of Full Spectrum Dominance. Engdahl says that the NATO exercises in Georgia are provocative to Russia because of the uncovered fact that Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili was behind the offensive in South Ossetia last August, while he was in the process of applying for NATO membership. Engdahl also says that the NATO countries are interested in securing alternatives to the Russian stronghold over European oil and explains that the missile defense program NATO wishes to install in Eastern Europe and Georgia has less to do with Iran than Russia.
 
 
 
Engdahl: NATO exercises in Georgia are a provocative move against Russia by the Pentagon
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Correa and Social Movements in Ecuador

Swinging from the Right: Correa and Social Movements in Ecuador
by Jennifer Moore   
On April 26, President Rafael Correa became the first Ecuadorian president in thirty years to win a new mandate after only one round of elections. A day later, the popular leader announced that he will accelerate his so-called Citizen's Revolution and prioritize change for the poor. However, prominent civil society organizations say that Correa's 21st Century Socialism favors powerful economic groups and bodes poorly for Ecuador's most-excluded.
 
Photo: Jennifer Moore

“From the point of view of the social movements and the indigenous movement in particular,” says Marlon Santi, President of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE), “Correa's socialism is not socialism at all...He waves the flag of socialism, but he does other things.”
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Vote Schmote

Voting's Just Not Enough
by Janine Bandcroft
Bill Tieleman's knee-jerk reaction to another Campbell government is to call for compulsory voting.  And just when I've discovered the joys of anarchy!
 
Corporate capo Gordon Campbell wins another mandate in B.C. poll

I didn't vote yesterday.  My name is not registered as one who went out of their way to endorse the current system.  I do democracy every day - publishing the Street Newz, organizing radio shows for CFUV, updating this blog (not that anyone reads it anyways), supporting my activist friends who climb trees, march in rallies, organize peaceful non-violent protests to express our outrage at the massive expensive elitist party next year in Whistler. 
 
I chose not to vote because I'm tired of being disappointed, I don't like the rage and hatred it evokes in me and, most importantly, I do not want to be on record as one who endorses the current system.
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Sri Lanka: The Modern Moral Malaise

The Modern Moral Malaise Behind Blind-Eyed Acceptance of Sri Lanka Genocide
by C. L. Cook
The stage for the current disaster befalling the Tamil minority of Sri Lanka was set seventy-two years ago last month. On April 27th, 1937, Hitler's Condor Legion fell from the blazing blue sky upon Guernica, a small Basque town in Northern Spain.
 
Picasso's Guernica  1937
 
Aiding allied dictator, Francisco Franco, Luftwaffe bombers pounded the civilian population, killing hundreds and maiming thousands more. Though not the first time civilians had been intentionally targeted, Guernica marked a turning point in the way conflicts were to be handled in the 20th Century. In the brave new world of warfare home was where the battle was; and everyone was the enemy.
 
From Trench to Total War in one generation.
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Boffo Black Op. Budget: Obama Exceeds Spooks' Hopes

Big Increases for Intelligence and Pentagon "Black" Programs in 2010
by Tom Burghardt - Antifascist Calling...
Continuing along the dark path marked out by his predecessors in the Oval Office, President Barack Obama's Defense and Intelligence budget for Fiscal Year 2010 will greatly expand the reach of unaccountable agencies--and the corporate grifters whom they serve. According to Aviation Week, "the Pentagon's 'black' operations, including the intelligence budgets nested inside it, are roughly equal in magnitude to the entire defense budgets of the UK, France or Japan, and 10 per cent of the total."

Yes, you read that correctly. The "black" or secret portions of the budget are almost as large as the entire defense outlays of America's allies, hardly slouches when it comes to feeding their own militarist beasts. The U.S. Air Force alone intends to spend approximately $12 billion on "black" programs in 2010 or 36 percent of its entire research and development budget. Aviation Week reveals:

Black-world procurement remains dominated by the single line item that used to be called "Selected Activities," resident in the USAF's "other procurement" section. This year's number stands just above $16 billion. In inflation-adjusted terms, that's 240 per cent more than it was ten years ago.
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Ditching Harman: Sinking Centrist "Democrats" in 2010

A Progressive Challenge to Jane Harman
by Norman Solomon
There are many reasons progressives will mobilize behind the campaign of Marcy Winograd, who announced on Monday that she'll challenge incumbent Congresswoman Jane Harman in the 2010 Democratic primary. Some will speak of Harman's pro-war record. Some will recall her support for warrantless wiretapping, followed by her irony-free indignation when it turned out that NSA snoops had taped her own phone conversations.
 
Rep. Jane Harman (D-California)
 
Some will recount Harman's long public silence after being briefed on torture by the US government. And then there's the extensive evidence that Representative Harman has gone over the top to do the bidding of the Israeli government and some of its most extreme supporters in the United States.

But what may be most significant about Winograd's race to unseat Harman in 2010 is that it reflects - and is likely to help nurture - a growing maturity among progressives around the country, who are tired of merely complaining about centrist Democrats in Congress. Many progressives are getting a clear take-home message: Let's stop griping about lousy members of Congress and start defeating them.
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Mothers for Real Mother's Day

Roses and Guns for Mother's Day: Codepink confronts a military hardware exhibition in Washington on Mother's Day
by TRNN
Arise, then, women of this day! Arise all women who have hearts, whether our baptism be that of water or of fears!Say firmly: “We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant agencies. Our husbands shall not come to us, reeking with carnage, for caresses and applause. Our sons shall not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been able to teach them of charity, mercy and patience.

We women of one country will be too tender of those of another country to allow our sons to be trained to injure theirs. From the bosom of the devastated earth a voice goes up with our own. It says “Disarm, Disarm! The sword of murder is not the balance of justice.”

Blood does not wipe our dishonor nor violence indicate possession. As men have often forsaken the plow and the anvil at the summons of war, let women now leave all that may be left of home for a great and earnest day of counsel. Let them meet first, as women, to bewail and commemorate the dead.

Let them then solemnly take counsel with each other as to the means whereby the great human family can live in peace, each bearing after their own time the sacred impress, not of Caesar, but of God.

In the name of womanhood and of humanity, I earnestly ask that a general congress of women without limit of nationality may be appointed and held at some place deemed most convenient and at the earliest period consistent with its objects, to promote the alliance of the different nationalities, the amicable settlement of international questions, the great and general interests of peace.
 
Mothers’ Day Proclamation: Julia Ward Howe, Boston, 1870
Julia Ward Howe
Boston, 1870
 
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PTSD: Unfit for Fighting

Unfit for Combat
by Dahr Jamail  | t r u t h o u t
This Monday at 2 PM Baghdad time, a US soldier gunned down five fellow soldiers at a stress-counseling center at a US base in Baghdad. Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the US military's Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters at a news conference at the Pentagon that the shootings occurred in a place where "individuals were seeking help."
 
Admiral Mullen added, "It does speak to me, though, about the need for us to redouble our efforts, the concern in terms of dealing with the stress... It also speaks to the issue of multiple deployments."

Commenting on the incident in nearly parallel terms, US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said that the Pentagon needs to redouble its efforts to relieve stress caused by repeated deployments in war zones that is further exacerbated by limited time at home in between deployments.

The condition described by Mullen and Gates is what veteran health experts often refer to as PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder).
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B.C.'s "Scientific" Grizzly Bear Slaughter

"Control kills" of grizzlies out of control on central coast
by Raincoast
A disturbing number of grizzly bears are being shot as so-called "control kills" in the Bella Coola valley on the central coast. Records obtained from the provincial Ministry of Environment show that a total of 18 grizzlies were killed as "problem bears" over the course of 2007 and 2008.

The majority of these grizzlies are being destroyed as a result of human behavior - primarily, a failure to secure bear attractants. For example, one local resident left a tub of salmon on his deck and then killed a female grizzly and her two cubs when they tried to eat the fish. Another resident, who was "not into removing" the apples from his tree, killed a grizzly for feeding on the fruit.
 
"Raincoast Conservation and Get Bear Smart Society are calling on the BC government to reform the existing laws under the Wildlife Act that address the issue of bear attractants to actually make them enforceable. With sufficient government funding for conservation enforcement and bear smart education, as well as a dose of common sense, control kills might become a rare occurrence in the Bella Coola valley and numerous other communities as well," said Chris Genovali, executive director of Raincoast Conservation.
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Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Damien Gillis, Jon Elmer, Janine Bandcroft May 11, 2009

This Week on GR
by C. L. Cook
This week: Damien Gillis of the Save Our Rivers Society on the B.C. Liberal's controversial Run of Rivers program; Jon Elmer on claims made by Canada's Green Party leader of Iran supplying Hamas with Depleted Uranium weapons during the 22 day assault against Gaza; and Victoria Street Newz publisher and CFUV broadcaster, Janine Bandcroft bringing us the latest newz from Victoria's streetz.
 
 
Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Monday, 5-6pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, 104.3 cable, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://GorillaRadioBlog.blogspot.com
   
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What the Herbalist Ordered

Just What the Herbalist Ordered
by Mickey Z.
In 21st century America, the health care industry is dominated by pharmaceuticals. According to a 2003 report called “Death by Medicine,” by Drs. Gary Null, Carolyn Dean, Martin Feldman, Debora Rasio, and Dorothy Smith, 783,936 people in the United States die every year from conventional medicine mistakes. Of those deaths, roughly 106,000 were from prescription drugs although—due to under-reported cases of adverse drug reactions—that number may actually be as high as 200,000.

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, more than half of all Americans take at least one prescription drug while one in six takes three or more. As reported by TruthOut.org, an analysis of 168,900 autopsies conducted in Florida in 2007 found that three times as many people were killed by legal drugs than by cocaine, heroin and methamphetamines combined. To make things a little more dramatic: Statistically speaking, prescription drugs are 16,400% more deadly than terrorists.

And that’s not counting the pharmaceuticals that find their way into our drinking water. A 2008 investigation discovered prescription drugs in the water supplies of 24 major metropolitan areas—supplies that provide water to 41 million people. In Philadelphia, for example, 56 pharmaceuticals or byproducts were discovered in treated drinking water. These included medicines for pain, infection, high cholesterol, asthma, epilepsy, mental illness and heart problems.
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Afghanistan Atrocities Galore: Obama Bombs 'Em Real Good

Tales of Yankee Power: Inevitable Atrocities of the Terror War
by Chris Floyd
Patrick Cockburn reports that the death count is rising from this week's American airstrike on an Afghan village compound where women, children and elderly men were taking shelter from a battle several miles away;  Afghan officials now say that almost 150 civilians were killed.
 
One of the few survivors pictured.
 
What's more, it turns out that the attack was not a single, mistaken shot, but part of a sustained bombing campaign, lasting for hours, in which three villages were "pounded to pieces."
 
From The Independent:

Shouting "Death to America" and "Death to the Government", thousands of Afghan villagers hurled stones at police yesterday as they vented their fury at American air strikes that local officials claim killed 147 civilians.

The riot started when people from three villages struck by US bombers in the early hours of Tuesday, brought 15 newly-discovered bodies in a truck to the house of the provincial governor. As the crowd pressed forward in Farah, police opened fire, wounding four protesters....

As usual, the Americans, while expressing "deep regret," tried to blame the atrocity on someone else, but were, as usual, belied by the evidence:

The protest in Farah City is the latest sign of a strong Afghan reaction against US air attacks in which explosions inflict massive damage on mud-brick houses that provide little protection against bomb blasts. A claim by American officials, which was repeated by the US Defence Secretary Robert Gates yesterday in Kabul, that the Taliban might have killed people with grenades because they did not pay an opium tax is not supported by any eyewitnesses and is disproved by pictures of deep bomb craters, one of which is filled with water...
Pictures of the aftermath of the attack show people standing beside the remains of a relative which often only looks like a muddy pile of torn meat. One elderly white bearded man, said by neighbours to have lost 30 members of his family, squats despairingly beside a body that has been torn into shreds. Among the few wounded to stay alive is a child with a badly burned face.
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