This Week on GR
he political situation in Haiti is hotting up and could erupt at any moment. At the heart of the fire this time is President Martelly's determination to again scapegoat Jean Bertrand Aristide, using charges of: "illicit drug trafficking, embezzlement of public funds, forfeiture and concussion, and money laundering." to distract the public from his failures to address the many serious issues Haiti faces.
As it stands, an arrest warrant has been issued for Aristide's failure to appear in court to answer charges on August 13th, and he is at home, surrounded by loyalists protecting the former president from the police. Kevin Pina
is an American filmmaker, journalist, educator, and broadcaster with Pacifica Radio's public affairs program, Flashpoints. Listen. Hear.
Pina's film credits
include: 'El Salvador: In the Name of Democracy,' 'Berkeley in the Sixties,' 'Amazonia: Voices from the Rainforest,' 'Haiti: Harvest of Hope,' 'Haiti: The UNtold Story,' and 'HAITI: We Must Kill the Bandits.' Kevin has lived and reported from Haiti, and was arrested by the infamous Baby Doc Duvalier for reporting on the abuses of that regime.
Kevin Pina in the first half.
And; Israel's bombardment of the captured population of the Gaza Strip continued this week with the Israel Defense Forces capping the seven weeks-long blitzkrieg by upping its game and targeting highrise apartment buildings. Predictably, the government of Canada remained mostly mute on the serial war crimes and crimes against humanity being conducted by its "good friend" Israel, throughout blaming Hamas, the governing body in Gaza, for Palestinians killed, maimed, and made homeless.
Late yesterday, (Aug. 26/'14) an "unlimited truce" was announced by Israel. Canada's Foreign Affairs minister, John Baird welcomed the truce announcement, but cautioned; "Israel will be forced to continue defending itself as long as Hamas continues its rocket attacks against civilians, and Hamas will be solely to blame for any further loss of life." Beyond raising questions about what sort of grip on reality minister Baird is capable of exerting, the Stephen Harper New Government's behaviour begs investigation of the Canada/Israel relationship, and how that relationship abets the horrors repeatedly witnessed in Occupied Palestine.
is a Canadian activist, lecturer, journalist, and author. Some of Yves' titles include; 'The Black Book of Canadian Foreign Policy,'Canada and Israel: Building Apartheid,' 'Lester Pearson's Peacekeeping The Truth May Hurt,' and his latest, 'The Ugly Canadian: Stephen Harper’s Foreign Policy.'
Yves Engler and Canada's tax-deductible aid to Israel's genocide in Gaza in the second half.
And; Victoria Street Newz publisher emeritus and CFUV Radio broadcaster, Janine Bandcroft
will be here at the bottom of the hour to bring us up to speed with some of what's good to do in and around our city in the coming week, and beyond there too. But first, Kevin Pina and the ritual pre-election smearing of Haiti's former president, Jean Bertrand Aristide.
Created on Tuesday, 26 August 2014 12:28
Written by Tom Engelhardt
The Fall and Rise of Investigative Journalism: From Asia to Africa to Latin America, Muckrakers Have Corrupt Officials and Corporate Cronies on the Run
by Anya Schiffrin
n our world, the news about the news is often grim. Newspapers are shrinking
, folding up
, or being cut loose
by their parent companies. Layoffs
are up and staffs
are down. That investigative reporter
who covered the state capitol -- she’s not there anymore. Newspapers like the Los Angeles Times
, the Washington Post, and the Chicago Tribune have suffered from multiple rounds of layoffs over the years. You know the story and it would be easy enough to imagine that it was the world’s story as well. But despite a long run of journalistic tough times, the loss of advertising dollars, and the challenge of the Internet, there’s been a blossoming of investigative journalism across the globe from Honduras to Myanmar, New Zealand to Indonesia. Woodward and Bernstein
may be a fading memory
in this country, but journalists with names largely unknown in the U.S. like Khadija Ismayilova, Rafael Marques, and Gianina Segnina are breaking one blockbuster story after another, exposing corrupt government officials and their crony corporate pals in Azerbaijan, Angola, and Costa Rica. As I travel the world, I’m energized by the journalists I meet who are taking great risks to shine much needed light on shadowy wrongdoing.
And I’m not the only one to notice.
Created on Tuesday, 26 August 2014 11:49
Written by Greg Palast
Robin Williams and the Happiness Industry
can't help feeling that Robin Williams was a victim of his industry: the happiness industry.
Williams was typecast for those parts with manic, unstoppable joy. Listen up, Aladdin! Williams' genie said, You're not suffering from poverty–what you need is a positive attitude! You know, put on a happy face! Let a smile be your umbrella!
Our culture despises and fears unhappiness. We pathologize unhappiness; we conflate it with a disease, "depression." And it's a disease we insist you can cure–so you don't spread your unhappiness germs to the rest of us. We stigmatize those who are unhappy, like we stigmatize those who are overweight: If you're fat, you just don't have any self-control. If you're unhappy, it's your personal failure to just buck up.
We laud the congenitally happy, like Ronald Reagan, the chipper Gipper, the Grinning Grandpa, who could unleash his death squads and smile all the while.
We are a nation of salesman, commercially optimistic. We don't like downers; we don't like people who spoil the party.
And so we push those who find themselves unhappy to medicate themselves–avoid The Deep, get out of the blues and join the Disney. Williams chose booze, pills and that most devastatingly addictive drug, fame cocaine.
(And no, I don't claim I'm exempt from the pull of let's-forget potions.)
Read more: Robin Williams and America's Pathologically Unhappy
Created on Tuesday, 26 August 2014 11:39
Written by Robert Parry
Selective Outrage over Ukraine POWs
by Robert Parry
- Consortium NewsT
he New York Times has taken deep umbrage over an unseemly parade staged by ethnic Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine featuring captured Ukrainian soldiers.
The Times noted that the Geneva Conventions prohibit humiliation of POWs, surely a valid point.
But the Times – in its profoundly biased coverage of the Ukraine crisis – apparently feels that other aspects of this nasty civil war are less newsworthy, such as the Kiev government’s bombardment of eastern Ukrainian cities sending the death toll into the thousands, including children and other non-combatants.
Also downplayed has been Kiev’s dispatch of neo-Nazi storm troopers to spearhead the urban combat in ethnic Russian towns and cities in the east.
Some of the original detainees jailed at the Guantanamo
Bay prison, as put on display by the U.S. military.
When the Times finally noticed this street-fighting role of neo-Nazi militias
, that remarkable fact – the first time armed Nazis were dispatched by any government to kill people in Europe since World War II – was consigned to the last three paragraphs of a long article on a different topic, essentially a throwaway reference.
Similarly, the Kiev regime’s artillery fire on residential areas – killing many civilians and, over the weekend, damaging a hospital – has been treated by the Times as a minor afterthought. But Times’ readers are supposed to get worked up over the tasteless demonstration in Donetsk, all the better to justify more killing of ethnic Russians.
Created on Tuesday, 26 August 2014 11:31
Written by Kathy Kelly
A Teacher in Kabul
by Kathy Kelly
- CounterPunch Kabul
ere in Kabul, one of my finest friends is Zekerullah, who has gone back to school in the 8th grade although he is an 18-year old young man who has already had to learn far too many of life’s harsh lessons.
Years ago and miles from here, when he was a child in the province of Bamiyan, and before he ran away from school, Zekerullah led a double life, earning income for his family each night as a construction crew laborer, and then attempting to attend school in the daytime. In between these tasks the need to provide his family with fuel would sometimes drive him on six-hour treks up the mountainside, leading a donkey on which to load bags of scrub brush and twigs for the trip back down. His greatest childhood fear was of that donkey taking one disastrous wrong step with its load on the difficult mountainside.
And then, after reaching home weary and sleep deprived and with no chance of doing homework, he would, at times, go to school without having done his homework, knowing that he would certainly be beaten. When he was in seventh grade, his teacher punished him by adding ten more blows each day he came to school without his homework, so that eventually he was hit sixty times in one day. Dreading the next day when the number would rise to seventy, he ran away from that school and never returned.
Now Zekerullah is enrolled in another school, this time in Kabul, where teachers still beat the students. But Zekerullah can now claim to have learned much more, in some cases, than his teachers.