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· The Politics Behind "One" God
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U.S.A.: Beyond Twelve Years a Slave
Slavery
By Paul Street
March 24, 2015 - blackagendareport.com


“The uncompensated crime and tragedy of racial oppression in before and after slavery continues to accumulate its blood and financial cost to this very day.”

I am never more than slightly encouraged about white America’s capacity for breaking from the United States’ deeply embedded racism when I hear one of my fellow US Caucasians report that they’ve viewed the Black British director Steve McQueen’s powerful movie Twelve Years a Slave and were “moved” (sometimes to tears) by it. It’s good that some US whites have retained enough inner humanity to recognize and recoil from the revolting racist cruelty and abominable torment that lay at the heart of the Southern US slave system depicted in Twelve Years a Slave. Sadly and sickeningly enough, untold millions of white Americans have been induced to think of the slave South as some kind of quaint, benign, and paternalistic time and place when benevolent white masters cared for the black chattel they viewed as inferior “family members.”

Twelve Years a Slave burst that childish white historical bubble with a relentlessly true-to-life and death portrayal of 1840s and 1850s slave traders, slave-owners, and slave-drivers as ferocious and perverse sociopaths, exploiters, torturers, sadists, and rapists. Based on the published 1853 narrative of Solomon Northrup, a free Black Northerner who was kidnapped and sold into Georgia cotton slavery, the film rightly portrays the slave system as a living Hell for its Black victims.

(Read More... | U.S.A. | Score: 0)

U.S.A.: State of the Union 2015: Lethal, Predatory, Delusional
Barack Obama
By Glen Ford
January 22, 2015 - blackagendareport.com


Tuesday night, in his next-to-last State of the Union address, President Obama flashed the suckers a bag of tricks that has no chance of passing the Republican-controlled Congress, but will allow his apologists to claim that the genuine, more progressive Obama is revealing himself in his final two years in office. Of course, the final-years Obama could have accomplished his modest 2015 agenda, and much more, back in 2009 and 2010, when Democrats dominated both the House and the Senate and the Republicans were in despair and disarray. Which is precisely why Obama chose, instead, to put his party’s perishable congressional majorities at the service of bankers, Wall Street, private insurers and Big Pharma. Now that Democrats are the endangered species on Capitol Hill, Obama hangs a piñata of subsidized community college education, additional tax deductions for child care, seven days paid sick leave, higher capital gains taxes on the wealthy, and billions in fees on casino bankers.

(Read More... | U.S.A. | Score: 0)

Racism Watch: The "Why": The Spectacular Media Failure on Charlie Hebdo
France
By Shamus Cooke
January 15, 2015 - counterpunch.org


A core tenet of journalism is answering the question “why.” It’s the media’s duty to explain “why” an event happened so that readers will actually understand what they’re reading. Leave out the “why” and then assumptions and stereotypes fill in the blank, always readily supplied by politicians whose ridiculous answers are left unquestioned by the corporate media.

Because the real “why” was unexplained in the Charlie Hebdo massacre, an obviously false culprit was created, leading to a moronic national discussion in the U.S. media about whether Islam was “inherently” violent.

For the media to even pose this question either betrays a blinding ignorance about the Middle East and Islam, or a conscious willingness to manipulate public sentiment by only interviewing so-called experts who believe such nonsense.

(Read More... | Racism Watch | Score: 4)

Racism Watch: L’affaire Charlie Hebdo and Western Colonialism
France
The Cartoons Outlawed in France

By John Walsh
January 15, 2015 - counterpunch.org


To understand the attack on Charlie Hebdo in Paris last week, we need only invert George W. Bush’s 2005 mantra*, thus: “They will continue to attack us over here so long as we slaughter them by the millions over there.”

In a word, this is one more instance of blowback, as Ron Paul tells us in his perceptive essay, “Lessons From Paris.” Among other things Paul points out: “The two Paris shooters had reportedly spent the summer in Syria fighting with the rebels seeking to overthrow Syrian President Assad. …But France and the United States have spent nearly four years training and equipping foreign fighters to infiltrate Syria and overthrow Assad! In other words, when it comes to Syria, the two Paris killers were on ‘our’ side. They may have even used French or US weapons while fighting in Syria.”

(Read More... | Racism Watch | Score: 0)

Spirituality: Why I Don't Do Kwaanza
Kwanzaa
By Bruce A. Dixon
December 19, 2014 - blackagendareport.com


I don't do Kwaanza, I just don't. I never have, and the very thought of it evokes some difficult memories and feelings for me. It's not the holiday's religious trappings or its Afro-syncretic fusion of Jewish menorahs, Swahili words, Kemetic, Christian and other rituals. I understand people do have a perfect human right to adopt or make up the cultural and religious practices that suit them. Rastafarianism, Voudon and Candomblé all borrow from multiple traditions, as does Islam from Judaism and Christianity, and Christianity from Judaism, Greek and Roman sources, and so on. So I have no quarrel whatsoever with those who celebrate and find value in Kwaanza.

But for many of us who took part in or were simply aware of the Black Panther Party in the late 60s and early 70s, the Kwaanza holiday is inseparable from the career and persona of its inventor, Ron Karenga, now a tenured professor in California. Back in the day, Karenga headed up an organization called US. As a tool of COINTELPRO, the federal counterintelligence program directed at movement organizations, Karenga's US organization murdered 2 leading members of the Black Panther Party in Los Angeles, Alprentice “Bunchy” Carter and John Huggins, and 2 more in San Diego, Sylvester Bell and John Savage. To my knowledge, Mr. Karenga has never expressed the faintest remorse or regret for these murders, or for his part in furthering the nefarious aims of federal and local police agencies in their assault upon the movement of those times. Karenga was later convicted along with his wife, of kidnapping and torturing two women in his own organization, a crime for which he served 4 years in prison, and one of which he still claims to be innocent. Some of Karenga's close and credible associates however, like former US chair Wesley Kabaila, maintain Karenga was not only responsible for those women's torture, but that it was part of an ongoing pattern over the years.

(Read More... | Spirituality | Score: 4.5)

Racism Watch: Waistband-Reaching Syndrome Could Get You Killed
Ferguson Police
The Bizarre Compulsion of Black Men to “Reach for their Waistbands”

By John Eskow
November 30, 2014 - counterpunch.org


If police accounts are to be believed, there is a bizarre urge among young, unarmed black men to provoke their own murder by “reaching for their waistbands” when cops are aiming service revolvers at them.

Just this week we heard Officer Darren Wilson claim that one of the reasons he killed Michael Brown was that the young man “reached for his waistband,” and–in what I guess was just an incredibly weird coincidence–we heard Cleveland police claim they killed a 12-year-old kid with a toy gun because he also “reached for his waistband.”

But this odd compulsion is not a new one. In 2011, fully half of all the young black men shot by LA cops were cut down because–again, if police accounts are to be believed–they too were “reaching for their waistbands.” The epidemic also spread to Houston, where multiple police accounts cite the same excuse. Oscar Grant, the young man killed by Oakland cops on a subway platform–and the subject of the movie “Fruitvale Station”–was shot for the exact same reason.

(Read More... | Racism Watch | Score: 5)

Racism Watch: Ferguson Reexamined
Ferguson Police
By Paul Craig Roberts
November 30, 2014 - paulcraigroberts.org


Few, if any, of the correct questions were asked in the grand jury hearing to decide whether policeman Darren Wilson would be indicted for killing Michael Brown.

The most important unexamined question is whether police are trained to use force immediately as a first resort before they assess a situation or determine if they are at the correct address. Are the police trained that the lives of police officers are so much more valuable than the lives of possible suspects, or a houseful of people into whose residence a heavily armed SWAT team enters, that police officers must not accept the risk of judicious behavior when encountering citizens? If this is the case as all evidence indicates that it is, then the police when they gratuitously murder members of the public are merely doing what they have been trained to do. As police are trained to use violence as a first resort, the police cannot be held accountable when they do.

(Read More... | Racism Watch | Score: 0)

U.S.A.: Freedom Rider: Jackson, Sharpton, Holder and Ferguson
Ferguson Police
By Margaret Kimberley
November 24, 2014 - blackagendareport.com


“Jackson was supplanted by Al Sharpton, who surpassed him in crookedness and politically prostitution.”

If a picture is worth 1,000 words the photo above proves the old adage to be true. This image encapsulates so much that is wrong with the so-called leaders of the black political class. Each of the three men depicted make a mockery of any claim to be allies of black people.

For decades Jesse Jackson’s seal of approval was enough to quiet or excite the masses to action. As a young lieutenant of Martin Luther King and then as leader of Operation PUSH he became in effect the leader of what was left of the civil rights movement old guard. His presidential campaigns in 1984 and 1988 mobilized millions of people to vote and brought election victories to progressives across the country. His history is part righteous and part mercenary, as he sought and received tribute from corporations around the country eager to curry favor with him and by extension the masses he sometimes did represent.

(Read More... | U.S.A. | Score: 5)

World Focus: Ebola, Human Rights and Poverty – Making the Links
Ebola
By Alicia Ely Yamin
October 28, 2014 - opendemocracy.net


The catastrophic Ebola crisis unfolding in West Africa offers many lessons, not least for global anti-poverty efforts. These will culminate in a set of targets, to be agreed by the United Nations in 2015, known as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

First of all, the crisis should lead to a re-think of the triumphalism that has marked some of the global health debate in recent years, with some projecting a “grand convergence within a generation” between North and South, rich and poor countries, based upon the “end of preventable mortality, including from infectious diseases”.

"It is not a coincidence that, in addition to the legacy of colonial exploitation, and pillaging by their own corrupt and unaccountable governments in recent history, Liberia and Sierra Leone are two countries that have been ravaged by brutal civil wars." Second, neither universal health insurance, without real access to public health as well as effective care, nor cash transfers, without connections to functioning systems, would have thwarted Ebola or the social devastation it is wreaking. Yet both are highly touted solutions to global poverty, and likely to be part of the SDG agenda.

(Read More... | World Focus | Score: 0)

World Focus: Freedom Rider: The Real Ebola Conspiracy
Ebola
By Margaret Kimberley
October 14, 2014 - blackagendareport.com


“African countries are poor because they have been systematically looted by Europe, the United States and the rest of the capitalist world for centuries.”

The ability to engage in critical thinking seems to be lost on the vast majority of Americans.

When Americans don’t like a president they claim that his mother traveled all the way from Hawaii to Kenya to give birth to him. Others swear that parents in Newtown, Connecticut went along with a government plot and pretended their children were shot to death in school when they are in fact still alive somewhere.

Ebola, now officially known as Ebola virus disease (EVD), has claimed thousands of lives in sporadic outbreaks ever since it was identified in the Congo in 1976. Scientists are unsure of its exact origins but hypothesize that its host is a forest dwelling fruit bat. According to this theory, its bodily fluids can be spread to other animals and then to humans through physical contact.

(Read More... | World Focus | Score: 3)

War and Terror: 10 Myths About Obama’s Latest War in Iraq and Syria
Syria
By Reese Erlich
October 03, 2014 - reeseerlich.com


Veteran foreign correspondent Reese Erlich was in northern Iraq at the start of the U.S. bombing campaign against Islamic State. He interviewed Kurdish leaders, peshmerga fighters and U.S. officials. He says the reality on the ground is far different from the propaganda coming out of Washington.

1. Islamic State presents an immediate threat to the people of the U.S.

In justifying air attacks on Syria on Sept. 23, President Barack Obama said, “We will not tolerate safe havens for terrorists who threaten our people.”

I saw firsthand the tens of thousands of Yazidis forced to flee Islamic State fighters. IS is a vicious, un-Islamic, ultra-right-wing group that poses a real threat to the people of Syria and Iraq. But those people will defeat IS, not the U.S., whose motives are widely questioned in the region. IS poses no more of a terrorist threat to the American people than al-Qaida and its offshoots.

(Read More... | War and Terror | Score: 5)

War and Terror: How the US Helped Create Al Qaeda and ISIS
War
By Garikai Chengu
September 20, 2014 - counterpunch.org


Much like Al-Qaeda, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is Made in the USA, an instrument of terror designed to divide and conquer the oil-rich Middle East and to counter Iran’s growing influence in the region. The fact that the United States has a long and torrid history of backing terrorist groups will surprise only those who watch the news and ignore history.

The CIA first aligned itself with extremist Islam during the Cold War era. Back then, America saw the world in rather simple terms: on one side, the Soviet Union and Third World nationalism, which America regarded as a Soviet tool; on the other side, Western nations and militant political Islam, which America considered an ally in the struggle against the Soviet Union.

The director of the National Security Agency under Ronald Reagan, General William Odom recently remarked, “by any measure the US has long used terrorism. In 1978-79 the Senate was trying to pass a law against international terrorism – in every version they produced, the lawyers said the US would be in violation”.

(Read More... | War and Terror | Score: 5)

War and Terror: America’s deadliest export and the endless war on terror
USA
By William Blum
September 16, 2014


Praise for America’s Deadliest Export: “Blum concentrates on matters of great current significance, and does not pull his punches” — Noam Chomsky.

This is an extract from America’s Deadliest Export: Democracy — The Truth About US Foreign Policy and Everything Else by William Blum (Zed Books, 2014). Zed Books have just reissued Blum’s three classic books, America’s Deadliest Export, Rogue State and Killing Hope in new updated editions.

A safer world for Americans… if they don’t leave home

Supporters of US foreign policy have been repeating the point ever since the attacks of September 11, 2001: US counterterrorism policy has worked. How do they know? Because there haven’t been any successful terrorist attacks in the United States in all the years since that infamous day.

True, but there weren’t any terrorist attacks in the United States in the six years before September 11, 2001 either, the last one being the Oklahoma City bombing of April 19, 1995. The absence of terrorist attacks in the US appears to be the norm, with or without a War on Terror.

(Read More... | War and Terror | Score: 5)

War with Russia: Western Doublethink on Blind Path to War
US vs Russia
By Finian Cunningham
September 05, 2014 - strategic-culture.org


In October 1962, the United States threatened to go to war with Russia over the Cuban missile crisis. That high-stakes drama came about after Washington learned that Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev had overseen the installation of ballistic missiles on the Caribbean island, some 90 miles from the US mainland. Never mind that the nascent military alliance between Moscow and the socialist government of Fidel Castro was a inviolable matter between two sovereign states – Washington was apoplectic that Soviet missiles were permitted anywhere near its territory. The then US President John F Kennedy was impelled to go to war over the issue, even if that meant igniting an all-out thermonuclear conflagration.

In the end, the standoff was resolved, in part through a mutual personal understanding between Kennedy and Khrushchev that such a catastrophic war had to be avoided at all costs. The Soviet Union eventually withdrew its missiles after receiving a guarantee from the White House that there would no follow-up US invasion of Cuba, as in the failed CIA-backed Bay of Pigs assault of April 1961. In addition, Kennedy gave a commitment to reciprocate US missile withdrawal from Turkey’s territory bordering with the former Soviet Union.

(Read More... | War with Russia | Score: 4)

U.S.A.: Ferguson Versus the Counter-Insurgency State
Ferguson Police
By Glen Ford
August 23, 2014 - blackagendareport.com


“The domestic counterinsurgency army has been methodically expanded by each successive administration.”

The corporate media, reflecting their owners’ anxiety at the failure of Black people to revert to a state of passivity in Ferguson, Missouri, have arrived at a general consensus on two counts: the need to “demilitarize” the police (fewer bullets, smaller armored vehicles?) and, more immediately, to re-establish some semblance of “calm” (as in comatose) in the neighborhood and beyond. Corporate-attuned Black powerbrokers and politicians deliver essentially the same message, counseling (quiet) introspection and a search for “solutions” (diversions) to the historical oppression in which they are deeply complicit.

But first, tensions must be reduced, to diffuse the confrontation – which, we are told, serves no one’s interests but the “agitators and instigators” (who, apparently, have millions of dollars in derivatives wagers riding on urban chaos). Fortunately, the “street” ignores the misleaders. If Ferguson had remained “calm” in the face of Michael Brown’s murder, nobody outside greater St. Louis would know the place existed.

(Read More... | U.S.A. | Score: 0)

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