Daily Archives: 25/03/2011

( Abstract : Philosophers allude to anarchist practices; philosophers allude to anarchist theorists; anarchists allude to philosophers (usually in search of theory to add to the canon). What is missing in this schema, I note with interest, is anarchists alluding to philosophical practices. These are the wild interstices: zones of outlandish contact for all concerned.

” Todo está ya en su punto, y el ser persona en el mayor.
Conocer las cosas en su punto, en su sazón, y saberlas lograr.
— Baltasar Gracián ”

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( According to an international scientific group monitoring radiation around the world, the Fukushima reactors are emitting nuclear toxins at levels approaching those seen in the “aftermath” of Chernobyl. The Chernobyl disaster began with an explosion, Fukushima is a smoldering cauldron of toxins. Chernobyl had 180 tonnes of nuclear fuel on site. Fukushima has 1700 tonnes of nuclear fuel on site.

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( It seems reasonable to state that the reason Washington launched its machinery of death against Libya is to insure it would have some input in that nation’s future after Gadhafi’s departure.  The claim of saving civilian lives rings as hollow as ever.  As always this claim begs the question: how does a military save civilian lives while destroying civilian lives?  History tells us that this reasoning is only for the folks watching the attacks on television, not for those in the region being subjected to them.  The Arab League, having foolishly believed that Washington and NATO truly exist to save civilian lives, is now regretting its support of military action in the wake of climbing civilian casualties.  Casualties which the US and its posse have denied are occurring.

While the US and its European cohorts would probably like to have friendly forces control the entire country of Libya, they may decide to be content with those forces in control of the part already held by the rebels in the east.  On February 28, 2011, Abdessalam Najib, a petroleum engineer at the Libyan company Agico told a Reuters reporter, “Nearly all the oilfields in Libya east of Ras Lanuf are now controlled by the people and the government has no control in this area.” This area is where a good portion of Libya’s major oil fields and related industry are.  Of course, should it start looking like Gadhafi’s forces find themselves unable to hold that territory, one can be certain Rome, London, and Washington will figure out a way to put some friendly troops in there.  In fact according to scattered press reports, some from the US may already be there.

Beyond Libya lies the greater revolt of the Arab people.  Manipulating this revolt and turning the hopes of the people in the region for genuine democracy into a US-style electoral charade seems to be the best Washington can hope for in the near future.  For those movements unwilling to settle for this, their battle will become more difficult.  It is unlikely that Washington wanted the Egyptian people to go as far as they have.  The current situation with the military in control provides some comfort to Washington, but the urgings of the people to move beyond the military has raised concerns.  Washington can hardly wait until a government more like Mubarak’s is in control.  At the same time, Washington’s fear is that there will never be another government like that in Cairo.  A pro-Western military presence in Libya, combined with  the repressive regimes in the sheikdoms and Iraq, would certainly help keep a lid on any further revolutionary stirrings.  Despite this, even Washington understands (and fears) that revolution operates on its own terms.

The pathetic displays of military hardware combined with the crowing of the Wolf Blitzer types on cable news channels are nothing new.  They shouldn’t piss me off like they do.  The strutting of that hardware accompanied by statistics about death and capabilities is reminiscent of a football locker room before a game.  But the most pathetic displays are those of liberal politicians and their supporters actually believing (for the umpteenth time in the past twenty years) that the US military is doing good.  That launching cruise missiles is defending civilians.  That Tomahawks and F-22s are something other than the weapons of mass destruction commandeered by uniformed men and women who are essentially cowards.  Regarding the other side of the aisle, let me say this.  Hearing John Boehner and other Republicans call for the White House to explain to Congress the nature of the mission is a joke.  It’s not like they have a history of opposing US military intervention or even much affinity for the Constitution.  Their cries to include Congress are as genuine as Barack Obama’s promises to close Gitmo, exit Iraq, and withdraw from Afghanistan by June. On the other hand, what does Obama have to fear by including Congress?  It’s not like there will be any effective opposition to his imperial foray.

Don’t be fooled by the stage managing of this intervention.  Just because Robert Gates or General Ham (now is that a name or what?) point to the presence of bombers from Norway, Denmark, and even (yes, even) from Qatar, the fact is this is Washington’s show.  From the halls of Pentagon City to the shores of Tripoli, the power behind the Tomahawks and bombers is all American.  And so is the hypocrisy.


( President Obama has returned from his first trip to Central and South America since taking office. Obama faced protests in Brazil, Chile and El Salvador as he sought to boost regional trade and improve security ties. In El Salvador, hundreds of demonstrators called for Obama to renegotiate or dismiss the Central American Free Trade Agreement, which has devastated El Salvador’s agricultural sector. Obama was also confronted with the legacy of U.S.-backed repression in Chile and El Salvador. Today marks the 31st anniversary of the slaying of Salvadoran Archbishop Óscar Romero, who was killed by members of a U.S.-backed death squad. We speak with investigative journalist Allan Nairn, who has reported extensively from Latin America since the 1980s.

Watch report here:

( The Hungarian authorities must act to aid victims of racially motivated attacks, Amnesty International said ahead of the Budapest trial tomorrow of four people suspected over a series of killings of Roma.

“As this long awaited trial begins, the protection of Roma communities in Hungary from racial harassment and violence should be a top priority,” said Barbora Cernusakova, Amnesty International’s Hungary expert.

“It is important that victims and their families receive the justice and redress which they are entitled to. This will show that hate attacks are not going to be tolerated.”

Six people, including a woman and a child, were killed in nine attacks against Roma across Hungary in 2008 and 2009.

The four suspected perpetrators of the crimes were arrested in August 2009. Three of them were charged with multiple homicide, the fourth was charged with giving assistance to the crime of premeditated multiple homicide.

The crimes were investigated by the Hungary’s National Bureau of Investigations. However, Amnesty International, as well as local Roma rights organisations, have pointed out that the authorities lack procedures for investigating racially motivated crimes.

Under the European Convention for Human Rights, the Hungarian authorities are obliged to “take all reasonable steps to unmask any racist motive and to establish whether or not ethnic hatred or prejudice may have played a role in the events.”

The attacks traumatized the Romani community in Hungary, which has been living in fear of further violence.

Ágnes Kóka, a relative of one of the victims, told Amnesty International: “It doesn’t matter what we do, how we try to prove to the majority of the society and to ourselves that we can get along. The only thing that matters is that we were born Gypsy.”

Amnesty International is concerned that police are not taking effective measures to stop the continuing harassment of Roma people.

Following an anti-Roma march by the far-right Jobbik party on 6 March in the village of Gyöngyöspata, three vigilante groups have been ‘patrolling’ the area harassing and intimidating Romani residents. Local Roma have allegedly been racially abused and are scared of possible future attacks. The groups have said their next activities will target the town of Hajdúhadháza, where they have announced a march for 1 April 2011.

“The trial starting tomorrow must send a signal to society that the rights of Romani communities are protected from violent attacks and harassment, including examples of such harassment in Gyöngyöspata and elsewhere” said Barbora Cernusakova.

Amnesty International will monitor the trial of those accused of the series of killings of Roma.