Religion as a Tool of Repression

Freedom of speech and dissent are always curtailed in times of war. Whenever soldiers occupy foreign nations, rational thinking is proscribed in favor of nationalistic hubris. Minority opinions, although grounded in ethics and reason, are repressed, often brutally. The majority becomes intolerant of dissenting views. Thoughtful dialog is suspended and irrational ideology gains ascendancy. Civil discourse breaks down, and the social order disintegrates into anti-intellectual emotionalism and chaos.

During World War I and World War II, it was dangerous for anyone to oppose war or to speak truth to power. When Eugene Victor Debs delivered his Canton anti-war speech in 1918, he went to prison. In An Enemy of the People, Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen demonstrated that the majority of the people are easily deceived, their emotions manipulated by profiteers and special interests. It requires serious conviction to take a principled stand in the midst of nationalistic fervor in which men and women so easily turn upon one another. During war, nationalism and repression are conducted with the fervor of a religious crusade.

In this era of permanent war we see bumper stickers that attempt to meld religion with nationalism. They carry jingoistic slogans like “God bless America” or “God bless our troops.” Significantly, God even appears on our currency. But why would a just God, if God exists at all, bless a nation that kills with impunity? Why would God bless a nation with a history of repression and genocide?  Why would God bless a nation that institutionalized chattel slavery and the repression of its working class?

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Anti-US governor wins Okinawa poll

The Japanese on the southern Island of Okinawa have re-elected incumbent governor Hirokazu Nakaima, who wants an end to the American military presence.

Nakaima, who wants the US base off Okinawa altogether, beat his opponent who agreed to relocate the base to a less crowded area on the island.

In May, Tokyo and Washington agreed to implement a 2006 plan to relocate Marine Corps Air Station Futenma to a less crowded area in Okinawa.

The move infuriated local residents, who view the base as a source of noise, pollution and serious crime –including rape.
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Cuban Rum Steps Up in World Markets

Havana, Nov 26 (ACN-RHC) The worldwide prestige of Cuban rum is reaffirmed by the growing demand of Ron Legendario, whose sales show an annual 10 percent increase.

The trademark’s deputy director of marketing, Carlos Sanchez, stated that Ron Legendario is currently available in more than 15 European countries.

Ron Legendario is produced in six factories across the country, three of them located in Pinar del Rio, Matanzas and Villa Clara and one in Havana, Sanchez said. Legendario is distributed in Europe by the Valencian Legendario SL company, which is currently seeking entry into other markets.

The trademark’s leading product is the Legendario Elixir de Cuba 7-year-aged rum, which is the richest, smoothest, sweetest and most delicate rum produced in the island.

Other Legendario spirits commercialized by the Spanish company are
Dorado, Añejo, Añejo Blanco, Carta Blanca Superior and Gran Reserva 15 Years.

 

Protest at White House: No New Korean War!

Washington, November 27 (RHC)– Protesters gathered Saturday in front of the White House in Washington to call for an end to the provocations against the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. The emergency anti-war rally was called in response to the latest escalation of hostilities in the Korean Peninsula.

Organizers of the anti-war protest said the provocations could lead to a new Korean War — “one that could expand to wider regional, and potentially nuclear, conflict.”

In a statement released just before Saturday’s protest rally began, organizers said that the biggest provocation in the region is the massive presence of U.S. military bases, troop, nuclear and conventional weapons. “In 2010, 65 years after the end of World War II, there are scores of U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine bases in the Republic of Korea, Okinawa, and all across Japan. This vast deployment of military power halfway around the world far exceeds that of any other country.”

The anti-war protesters said that the real purpose of this military machine “is to secure and further the interests of the U.S. corporate power and strategic domination in Asia and around the world. It is the enemy of the people of Korea, China, Japan and the people of the United States.”

Study: Occupied Baghdad is least livable city on planet

The Iraq war is still being touted by Washington and the Pentagon as a war for progress and stability in the region. A study released May 26, however, reveals a radically different reality.

The Mercer Quality of Living Survey ranked Baghdad last in a list of “most livable cities.” The study took into account political, economic, ecological, social and cultural factors.

The result is not surprising considering the devastation brought on by the U.S.-led invasion. Sewage treatment plants, factories, schools, hospitals, and museums have been destroyed. As a result, Iraqi citizens now have scarce access to water and electricity.

The demolition of infrastructure is an important tactic in imperialist war and helps explain why the study found that, “A lack of security and stability continue to have a negative impact on Baghdad’s quality of living.”

The only benefactors from the occupation have been big corporations like BP, who got access to the giant Rumaila oil field. The citizens of Iraq continue to pay with their lives.

Los Angeles teacher call for Mexican revolution in the US

May 1st in History

US confronts its reputation abroad

Poverty in Venezuela fell from 70% in 1996 to 23% in 2009

Thanks to the policies of the Bolivarian Government poverty in Venezuela fell to 23% in 2009 from 70.3% in the second half of 1996 accompanied by 40% of extreme poverty and a record inflation rate of 103%.

These figures were presented by the President of the Venezuelan National Statistics Office (INE), Elias Eljuri, in the TV program “Between Jornalists” broadcast on the private TV channel Televen.

Eljuri explained that poverty in Venezuela which reached 55% and extreme poverty 25% after the oil industry sabotage orchestrated by the right wing opposition in an attempt to overthrow the Hugo Chávez government, has been falling steadily. It is currently 23% in total with 6% being qualified as extreme poverty. The calculation is based on international standards which take income into account as the overriding factor.

“Many of these opposition politicians and intellectuals seem to forget that they took inflation to over 100% and poverty to over 70% when they were in power,” Eljuri commented. He defended the validity of the INE’s statistics which are frequently questioned by the opposition.

He emphasized that the Gini Index of inequality was the lowest in Latin America which descended from 0.49 to 0.39 in 2009. Now, the richest 20% control 46% of the wealth compared to 54% in 1998.

“The richest 20% still control a large chunk of the country’s wealth but this is a steady change in favor of the vast majority of Venezuelans”, Eljuri added …

“We are still not satisfied with this wealth distribution and the only way to change this is by implementing deep structural changes in the economy which President Chávez is currently undertaking.”

Despite opposition studies which always show that poverty is son the rise Eljuri concluded by saying that the INE figures are fully supported as being transparent and objective by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean as well as by the World Bank.

Bay of Pigs: A Victory of Latin America over the United States

The Cuban people will be celebrating the 49th anniversary of the defeat of the mercenary troops financed and trained by the US government that invaded Cuba on April 16, 1961 with the objective of overthrowing the government of Fidel Castro.

More than 500 mercenaries disembarked at the Bay of Pigs, where they planned to create a beachhead.

However, the rapid and overwhelming response of the Rebel Army and the Cuban people, allowed Cubans to defeat the imperial forces in less than 72 hours.

This victory preserved independence and sovereignty, and strengthened the revolution and the socialist system.

The leader of the Cuban revolution, Fidel Castro, said that this battle made a difference between the past and the future, reaction and progress, tradition and fidelity to principles, capitalism and socialism, imperial domination and liberation.

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CNN poll confirms: Most Americans believe their government is a threat to their welfare

A majority of Americans think the federal government poses a threat to rights of Americans, according to a new national poll.

Fifty-six percent of people questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Friday say they think the federal government’s become so large and powerful that it poses an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens. Forty-four percent of those polled disagree.

The survey indicates a partisan divide on the question: only 37 percent of Democrats, 63 percent of Independents and nearly 7 in 10 Republicans say the federal government poses a threat to the rights of Americans.

According to CNN poll numbers released Sunday, Americans overwhelmingly think that the U.S. government is broken – though the public overwhelmingly holds out hope that what’s broken can be fixed.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted February 12-15, with 1,023 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey’s sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points for the overall survey.

Cubans Nominate their Candidates

Havana, February 26 (RHC) –Thousands of Cubans began attending community meetings countrywide to nominate candidates suitable for the post of delegates to be elected by direct, secret voting in the upcoming polls, scheduled for April 25.

As part of the Cuban electoral system, based on mass participation of the population, nearly 51,000 such meetings have been held so far.

To be elected as delegate of his/her electoral district, the candidate has to win over 50 percent of the votes, with a second round supposed to be held seven days later if needed.

The post of delegate is exercised without remuneration. Those elected have the responsibility to be in constant touch with their electors in order to solve problems existing in their territories, and can be removed by the voters if their performance is poor.

The second step in the electoral process is the formation of municipal and provincial assemblies of the National Assembly of People’s Power of Cuba with the participation of the delegates elected by the people.

San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department buys gear from company targeted by sweatshop investigators

The Safariland website is a virtual big box retailer of tactical equipment, chemical weapons and forensics for police departments, military and private security contractors. The Premium Wallbanger System is used for SWAT team entry operations and can create a shooting port through a wall. It can use an explosive charge to breach metal doors and provides OVC spray coverage. The Protech brand makes a rifle threat plate that can withstand multiple rounds from an AK-47. The DeltaNu Reporter is a handheld illicit drug identification system. The Monadnock Autolock defender baton is expandable and comes with a guard for hand protection.

In the early days Safariland kept it simple. The Ontario-based multinational corporation birthed in a ’60s suburban Los Angeles garage was known for custom holsters. The manufacturer claims that 70 percent of peace officers in North America currently use Safariland duty gear. The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department purchases duty gear from the manufacturer.

Decades of growth and a series of mergers and acquisitions has left Safariland the flagship of 19 companies under control of the British defense contractor BAE Systems. The free trade business model of the ’90s put Safariland in a factory in Mexico well before the consolidation with BAE systems took place. The North America Free Trade Agreement fueled the growth of maquiladoras. The border factories import materials into Mexico for assembly and then re-export them to the U.S. to enter the global marketplace.

The treaty made conditions ripe for economic and environmental exploitation. The effect of the duty-free and tax-free provisions of NAFTA that leave little or in most circumstances zero development in the communities the workers live.

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SPLC Suit Wins $2.75 Million Settlement for Exploited Workers

COLUMBIA, Tenn. – In one of the largest settlements of its kind, an Arkansas forestry company has agreed to pay $2.75 million to settle the legal claims of foreign guest workers who say they were cheated out of the wages they earned planting trees for the company.

Superior Forestry Service Inc.’s agreement to pay more than 2,200 guest workers makes this one of the largest settlements ever reached under the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Workers Protection Act.

The lawsuit was brought on behalf of the workers by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), Farmworker Justice, the Legal Aid Justice Center and attorneys from two Chicago-based private law firms: Willenson Law, LLC and Hughes, Socol, Piers, Resnick & Dym. Superior Forestry is one of the largest forestry contractors in the United States.

The settlement received preliminary approval Thursday from U.S. District Judge William J. “Jim” Haynes II. It is subject to final approval following a fairness hearing in March.

“Guest workers are too often seen as disposable workers who can be cheated and exploited,” said Jim Knoepp, an attorney with the SPLC’s Immigrant Justice Project. “This settlement sends a powerful message that these workers have rights and that their employers will be held accountable.”

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Happy birthday, Comrade Kim

PYONGYANG – It’s a cold, crisp, sunny morning in the capital of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), and there could not be a more important game in town. Billboards bearing the numbers “2.16 [February 16]” – usually decorated with huge red flowers – are all over the place. The flowers are the only splashes of full color against drab grays and browns. They are of course kimjongilia, a modified begonia programmed to bloom exactly on – when else – 2.16.

For Pyongyang‘s 2 million or so residents, it’s time to party. Today is the 68th birthday of the General Secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea, Chairman of the National Defense Commission and Supreme Commander of the Korean People’s Army – comrade Kim Jong-il.

Kim Jong-il, aka the Dear Leader, has been the maximum leader of North Korea for almost 12 years now. But he’s not the president (the titular head of state is the chairman of the presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly, Kim Yong-nam.) A key reason is that he’s not very fond of the endless, obligatory diplomatic round of meeting foreign heads of state.

The relentlessly apocalyptic Western media narrative would lead one to believe that on this eventful day the citizens of what is routinely depicted as a “Stalinist/communist/terrorist/totalitarian/insane/rogue/axis of evil gulag” would be one step short of showering a battery of commemorative missiles over South Korea, Japan or the west coast of the US for that matter, not to mention conduct another nuclear test. Reality though bears no “axis of evil” overtones.

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Manifesto of Joe Stack

If you’re reading this, you’re no doubt asking yourself, “Why did this have to happen?”  The simple truth is that it is complicated and has been coming for a long time.  The writing process, started many months ago, was intended to be therapy in the face of the looming realization that there isn’t enough therapy in the world that can fix what is really broken.  Needless to say, this rant could fill volumes with example after example if I would let it.  I find the process of writing it frustrating, tedious, and probably pointless… especially given my gross inability to gracefully articulate my thoughts in light of the storm raging in my head.  Exactly what is therapeutic about that I’m not sure, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

We are all taught as children that without laws there would be no society, only anarchy.  Sadly, starting at early ages we in this country have been brainwashed to believe that, in return for our dedication and service, our government stands for justice for all.  We are further brainwashed to believe that there is freedom in this place, and that we should be ready to lay our lives down for the noble principals represented by its founding fathers.  Remember? One of these was “no taxation without representation”.  I have spent the total years of my adulthood unlearning that crap from only a few years of my childhood.  These days anyone who really stands up for that principal is promptly labeled a “crackpot”, traitor and worse.

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New name for Iraq war: Operation New Dawn

Effective Sept. 1, the War on Iraq will acquire a new official moniker: “Operation New Dawn.”

Defense Secretary Robert Michael Gates announced the move Wednesday in a memo to Gen. David Howell Petraeus, chief of United States Central Command, that was first reported by ABC News.

In the brief, one-paragraph memo, a copy of which also went to Adm. Michael Glenn “Mike” Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gates said the name change is designed to coincide with “the change of mission for U.S. forces in Iraq.”

“Aligning the name change with the change of mission sends a strong signal that Operation Iraqi Freedom has ended and our forces are operating under a new mission,” Gates wrote. “It also presents opportunities to synchronize strategic communication initiatives, reinforce our commitment to honor the Security Agreement, and recognize our evolving relationship with the Government of Iraq.”

The Universal Soldier

He’s five foot-two, and he’s six feet-four,
He fights with missiles and with spears.
He’s all of thirty-one, and he’s only seventeen,
Been a soldier for a thousand years.

He’a a Catholic, a Hindu, an Atheist, a Jain,
A Buddhist and a Baptist and a Jew.
And he knows he shouldn’t kill,
And he knows he always will,
Kill you for me my friend and me for you.

And he’s fighting for Canada,
He’s fighting for France,
He’s fighting for the USA,
And he’s fighting for the Russians,
And he’s fighting for Japan,
And he thinks we’ll put an end to war this way.

And he’s fighting for Democracy,
He’s fighting for the Reds,
He says it’s for the peace of all.
He’s the one who must decide,
Who’s to live and who’s to die,
And he never sees the writing on the wall.

But without him,
How would Hitler have condemned him at Dachau?
Without him Caesar would have stood alone,
He’s the one who gives his body
As a weapon of the war,
And without him all this killing can’t go on.

He’s the Universal Soldier and he really is to blame,
His orders come from far away no more,
They come from here and there and you and me,
And brothers can’t you see,
This is not the way we put the end to war.

Chords:- F,G7,C,Am Dm,Em

Gerald Celente Interview – Words of wisdom

Gerald Celente in Wikipedia

Trends Research Institute

Trends Journal

Ecuador: US extremists trying to destabilize us

Ecuador has accused right-wing extremists in the United States of planning to destabilize the South American country.

President Rafael Vicente Correa Delgado‘s accusations, in his weekly radio program on Saturday, targeted US-based groups and not the US government, the Associated Press reported.

Correa said that the groups were funneling aid to parts of Ecuador’s indigenous movement, plotting to destabilize progressive government initiatives rather than using direct confrontation.

The Ecuadorian president, however, gave no examples of any specific aid.

In the past few months, Indian protests and roadblocks have forced Correa to reconsider proposals to force mines on Indian lands without their consent and to put water under state control.

“US has to break with its superpower arrogance” – Bill Ayers

The US should give up its superpower ambitions and put itself on equal footing with other nations – otherwise, it will find itself at an impasse, believes American scholar William Charles “Bill” Ayers.

“The arrogance of shouting your opinion and unwillingness to hear anything in response is something that puts us in a parallel situation. It means we can’t grow, we can’t change,” he told RT.

“It has already created problems for the US and they are getting bigger. I think what we need is to break from that tradition of American foreign policy of the last sixty years or longer and really imagine ourselves entering into the world as a nation among nations – not as a superpower, not as police of the world. We need to enter into the conversation with respect – for ourselves, but also respect for others.”

Professor Ayers also responded to the criticism from talk show host Bill O’Reilly, who mocked his recent interview with RT.

Bill O’Reilly is apparently unhappy about me, unhappy that I had something to say but he did not say anything about the content what I have said. That interview that we did had a lot of content. One of the things we talked about how a country like the United States with less than five per cent of the world’s population can kind of police the world and have a trillion dollar military budget,” Ayers said.

“So the media ought to have taken that content – not trying to scream or yell or make slogans about who’s saying what. But this is what Bill O’Reilly specializes in,” he added.

Tribute to Cuban Heroine Celia Sanchez

Havana, Jan 11 (Prensa Latina) Dozens of Cuban citizens gave tribute to Cuban revolutionary heroine Celia Sánchez Manduley in the 30th anniversary of her death.

Different generations of Cubans went up to the Pantheon of the Cuban Revolutionary Armed Forces (FAR) in the Colon Cemetery in Havana to pay tribute to this revolutionary fighter Monday.

The walk was headed by Lazara Mercedes Lopez, first secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC – Partido Comunista de Cuba) in the Cuban capital; and Ana Judith Area, first secretary of the Union of Young Communists in Havana.

Celia Sanchez was one of the first women to take arms against the Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar dictatorship until the triumph of the Cuban Revolution.

She participated in the preparation of the Granma expedition and together with Cuban clandestine leader Frank Pais, she organized the farmers of the zone to support the expedition.

She came to Cuban land on December 2, 1956 with the group of 82 men headed by Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz to start the war. On March 19, 1957, she climbed the Sierra Maestra Mountains and became a member of the Rebel Army, being the main promoter of the Mariana Grajales Coello Female Platoon.

Venezuelan President Chavez’s Popularity Steady at 60%

According to a study carried out by the Venezuelan Institute of Data Analysis (IVAD), Venezuelan president Hugo Rafael Chávez Frías‘s approval has dropped slightly, to 60.3%, from 62.4% last October.IVAD performed the study from 12 to 20 December, interviewing 1,200 people directly in their homes. IVAD selected the interviewees at random but also reflecting a range of regions and social groups in Venezuela.

To the question, “How do you rate Hugo Chavez’s management as president of Venezuela?,” 38.7% said “bad” and 60.5% said “good”. The poll also confirmed that Chavez’s party, the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV – Partido Socialista Unido de Venezuela), continues to be the most popular party.

The poll comes as PSUV, opposition and other party leaders prepare for an election campaign year, where all positions in the National Assembly will be up for election in September.

In May 2008 an IVAD poll said Chavez had an approval rating of 68.8%, and in October last year, 62.4%. IVAD polls tend to reflect greater support for the president than polls by opposition polling agencies.

Venezuelan Analysis

Ecuador launches state-run news agency

Ecuador has established its first state-run news agency amid efforts by the lawmakers in the Andean nation to create a government-controlled watchdog which regulates privately-owned news outlets.

Quito has launched the Ecuadorian and South American News Agency (ANDES) to “strengthen the image” of the country, the office of President Rafael Correa said on Tuesday, AFP reported.

The state-run news outlet will cooperate closely with other news agencies across the continent, including Venezuela‘s Agencia Bolivariana de Noticias, Télam from Argentina, Spain‘s EFE and Peru‘s Andina de Radiodifusión y Television, the presidential office said.

Ecuadoran president Rafael Vicente Correa Delgado‘s attempt to regulate the private news channels in the country has faced with political oppositions both from the local news outlets and opposition groups.

Critics of Correa maintain that his actions threaten the freedom of expression.
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Shining Path Indoctrination School Dismantled in Lima Jail

LIMA – Authorities at Lima’s Canto Grande Prison dismantled a school of the The Communist Party of Peru (Partido Comunista del Perú), more commonly known as the Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso), terrorist group that was indoctrinating inmates and their families in that jail, the local press reported on Saturday.

According to the daily El Comercio, the alarm sounded in October when the Counter-Terrorist Directorate (DIRCOTE – Dirección Contra el Terrorismo) anti-terrorist police got wind of Shining Path prisoners there involved in raising awareness among relatives of inmates convicted of terrorism.

The situation in Canto Grande had become so overwhelming that prison officials banned entry into cellblocks controlled by Shining Path prisoners – some 80 per block – while some entrances had been closed off from the inside with metal fittings.

El Comercio said that the work of jailers was almost nonexistent, since they could only perform guard duty from outside each cellblock.
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7,724 Slain in Mexico in 2009

MEXICO CITY – Last year was the deadliest in Mexico in the past decade, with 7,724 people killed in violent incidents attributed to organized crime, Mexico City daily El Universal said on Friday.

That total translates into an average of more than 21 homicides a day.

The newspaper, which has been keeping a daily tally of the number of deaths from Mexico’s drug war, said there have been 16,205 organized crime-related killings in Mexico since President Felipe de Jesús Calderón Hinojosa took office in December 2006.

Chihuahua was far and away the most violent state in Mexico last year, with 3,250 murders, followed by Sinaloa (930), Durango (734), Guerrero (672), Baja California (444), Michoacan and Sonora, according to El Universal.

Mexican authorities do not provide homicide figures stemming from the cartels’ battles with each other and the security forces.

The Mexican government has deployed more than 40,000 soldiers and 20,000 federal police nationwide to combat the drug cartels and other organized criminal outfits in the country’s most violence-ridden states.

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2009 Nanny of the Year

FARC in Colombia : A History of Armed Resistance

CARTAGENA DE INDIES, Colombia — In May 2003 a leak from the Bush Treasury Department indicated that the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) was about to add to its extensive narcotics traffickers list. This time it would add someone in Colombia.

OFAC would be using one of the enlightened Republican Congress’s new drug war laws, the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act. I was pretty sure who the new addition would be. The word “kingpin” was a dead giveaway.

It had to be the guy who had attained high office; whose brother had organized 20 or more death squads and maintained a couple of them out at the family hacienda; whose cousin in the Colombian Congress was the mouthpiece for those death squads as well as a close friend and promoter of various well known narcotraficantes, including the legendary Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria; someone whose own father was wanted by the Colombian police and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration for cocaine trafficking when he was killed in an abortive kidnap plot; and who himself was removed from his position as mayor of Medellín for having well-known ties to drug runners.

Who else could it be, but master criminal and El Presidente himself, Álvaro Uribe Vélez?

Imagine my surprise when it was announced the next day, that it was not Uribe after all, but the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – People’s Army (FARC-EP: Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia – Ejército del Pueblo) and 15 of their known or suspected leaders, even though I already knew they had to be a bad bunch of hombres. Five years before, in 1997, they were named a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the U.S. Department of State.

It couldn’t have been easy to make it to the top of two government lists at the same time (the terrorist list and the narcotraficantes list) and be the defining designees of a whole new hyphenated word, “Narco-terrorist”! That should keep them from gaining credibility with anyone with media access in the U.S.! I started wondering who these FARC guys were. Somebody needed to check them out, find out where they came from, and why.

See also:

New Year Greetings from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – People’s Army (FARC)

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War Veteran’s Speech

Dutch MP: Curaçao is US spy base

Mr. Harry an Bommel has asked Foreign Minister Maxime Verhagen whether he is aware that a Boeing RC-135 aircraft has been making regular reconnaissance flights from the Caribbean island’s Hato International Airport airport over the past few weeks.

War on drugs
The flights were the cause of angry reactions by Venezuelan president Hugo Rafael Chávez, who accused the Netherlands of colluding with the United States. The Hague government is contributing to rising tensions between Venezuela and Colombia, according to the Venezuelan authorities.

The opposition MP said it is up to the Netherlands to help de-escalate these tensions. He is asking for a ban on American military flights over Colombia from the Antilles. Ostensibly such flights are part of the US “war on drugs” but Mr. Van Bommel claims they are also used in a “war on guerrillas”. The MP wants to scrap the US-Netherlands Forwards Operations Location Treaty enabling the Americans to use airfields in Curaçao and the Antilles for anti-drugs flights.

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Chavez threatens to expel Toyota

Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez has warned that he may expel Japanese carmaker Toyota unless it produces an all-terrain model suitable for poor and rural areas.

In a speech late on Wednesday, Chavez also said that he would not hesitate to expel and expropriate plants from other Asian and US automobile companies operating in Venezuela should they fail to share the technology with the locals.

“What’s this that Toyota doesn’t want to make the ‘rustic’ model here?” Chavez said, during a ceremony in Caracas to hand owners the keys to economically-produced cars that Venezuela’s government has imported from Argentina.

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New Year Greetings from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – People’s Army (FARC)

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Al finalizar este año de 2009, queremos extender nuestro saludo entusiasmado, patriótico y pleno de optimismo en las posibilidades y el futuro libertario de nuestra patria, a todas las estructuras de guerrilleros integrantes de las FARC EP, Milicianos Bolivarianos, militantes del Partido Comunista Clandestino, integrantes del Movimiento Bolivariano, Redes Urbanas, a los prisioneros de guerra que en el país y en el exterior enfrentan con dignidad la represión del Estado, a los simpatizantes de las FARC EP en Colombia y el mundo, y, ante todo, a nuestro pueblo, a todo el pueblo colombiano, que con su respaldo, colaboración y participación de distintas formas, nos han hecho posible sostener en alto las banderas de la lucha por la dignidad nacional, la patria y la esperanza de una Colombia en paz y mejor para todos los colombianos.

A la vez, queremos hacerlos partícipes de las siguientes reflexiones:

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‘Capitalism must go for earth to survive’

Bolivian President Evo Morales has called for the “elimination” of the capitalist system in order to “rid the world of its woes.”

In an interview with Aljazeera television network in the Danish capital of Copenhagen on Wednesday, Bolivia‘s leader slammed capitalism for forestalling efforts to seal a deal on the reduction of CO2 emissions at the climate change summit.

“The principle obstacle to combating climate change is capitalism. Until we put an end to capitalism, it will continue to be a big obstacle for life and humanity,” Morales said.

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Colombia rebels ‘to join forces’

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Colombia‘s two biggest rebel movements have said they will join forces after years of being pushed onto the defensive by the US-backed policies of Alvaro Uribe (Álvaro Uribe Vélez), the Colombian president.

In a joint statement on Thursday the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – People’s Army (FARCFuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia – Ejército del Pueblo) and the National Liberation Army (ELNEjército de Liberación Nacional) said they would unite with “force and belligerence” against Uribe.

“We are on our way toward working for unity,” said the statement signed by the FARC and ELN, both of whom have been blacklisted as terrorist groups by the US.

“Our only enemy is North American Imperialism and its oligarchic lackeys,” read the statement published on the Agencia de Noticias Nueva Colombia (ANNCOL) news agency website, often the first to carry Colombian rebel statements.

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Food Ad Tricks

Analysts: US capitalism on verge of collapse

The declining state of the US economy has convinced a growing number of American analysts that the US capitalist financial system is doomed to disintegrate.

Citing the works of other leading economists such as Jack Bogle and Marc Faber, Market Watch commentator Paul B. Farrell gives 20 reasons, in a recent article, why the “American capitalism has lost its soul” and will.

Farrell points to Faber’s Doom, Boom and Gloom Report and asserts that the economist is warning of the fall of “the entire system of capitalism.”

“The future will be a total disaster, with a collapse of our capitalistic system as we know it today,” Farrell adds, quoting the report. “Get it? The engine driving the great ‘American Economic Empire‘ for 233 years will collapse, a total disaster, a destiny we created.”

He writes that based on Faber’s predictions, capitalism, which has been the driving engine of America and global economies for over two hundred years, will collapse and, consequently, trigger global “wars, massive government-debt defaults, and the impoverishment of large segments of western society.”

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Global survey on free market capitalism: Majority say fix it or ditch it

Twenty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, a new BBC poll has found widespread dissatisfaction with free-market capitalism (laissez-faire).

In the global poll for the BBC World Service, only 11% of those questioned across 27 countries said that it was working well. Most thought regulation and reform of the capitalist system were necessary.

There were also sharp divisions around the world on whether the end of the Soviet Union was a good thing
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American capitalism gone with a whimper

It must be said, that like the breaking of a great dam, the American decent into Marxism is happening with breath taking speed, against the back drop of a passive, hapless sheeple, excuse me dear reader, I meant people.

True, the situation has been well prepared on and off for the past century, especially the past twenty years. The initial testing grounds was conducted upon our Holy Russia and a bloody test it was. But we Russians would not just roll over and give up our freedoms and our souls, no matter how much money Wall Street poured into the fists of the Marxists.

Those lessons were taken and used to properly prepare the American populace for the surrender of their freedoms and souls, to the whims of their elites and betters.

First, the population was dumbed down through a politicized and substandard education system based on pop culture, rather then the classics. Americans know more about their favorite TV dramas then the drama in DC that directly affects their lives. They care more for their “right” to choke down a McDonalds burger or a Burger King burger than for their constitutional rights. Then they turn around and lecture us about our rights and about our “democracy“. Pride blind the foolish.

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‘America lives in a fascist state’ – Gerald Celente

The merger of corporate and government powers in modern America is plain and simple fascism, believes Gerald Celente, the founder of the Trends Research Institute and publisher of Trends Journal.

Celente takes an in-depth look at what AIG and Goldman Sachs really are and the people behind them; explains the policies of the Obama’s administration, and the moral basis for a forthcoming new American Revolution.

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