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Gaza Speaks: Ten Years Behind the Walls

Gaza Speaks: This Is What the Decade-long Siege Has Done to Us
by Ramzy Baroud  -
(with reporting from Yousef Aljamal in Gaza)
Baroud Gaza rubbleWhenever Mariam Aljamal’s children hear the sound of thunder at night, they wet their beds. Their reaction is almost instinctive, and is shared by a large number of children throughout the Gaza Strip.
Mariam’s three children – Jamal, Lina and Sarah - were all born a few years after the Gaza siege was first imposed in 2006, and all of them have experienced at least one Israeli war.
“My kids feel scared when the electricity goes off, which is most of the time,” says the 33-year-old mother from Nuseirat Refugee Camp, who has a degree in Communication and is currently pursuing her MA.
“They are still living the trauma of the 2014 offensive. War is still haunting my family, and life has become so hard for us.”

Indeed, after years of trying, Mariam is yet to find work. Unemployment in Gaza is the highest in the world, according to the World Bank.

Building Blocs: Trade Deals Deepening Continentalist Ties in North America

Rebuilding and Expanding the North American Relationship
by Dana Gabriel - Be Your Own Leader

January 27, 2016
A major priority for Canada’s new prime minister is to reset the relationships with both the U.S. and Mexico. There is a real opportunity for all three countries to recommit to building a North American community. This includes expanding political, security and economic cooperation, as well as greater coordination on issues such as energy and the environment.
Further deepening Canada-Mexico ties is one of the keys to strengthening continental relations. The Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal, which builds on the commitments of NAFTA could also help take North American trilateral integration to the next level.

During a foreign policy speech before he became Prime Minister, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau emphasized the importance of North America and outlined his plans to improve Canada’s relationship with its NAFTA partners.

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Joyce Nelson, Andy Worthington, Janine Bandcroft Jan. 27, 2016

This Week on GR
by C. L. Cook -

Despite decades of abuse, and now the daily revelations of the criminal mismanagement of Flint, Michigan's water supply, the Great Lakes and their tributaries are still viewed by industry, government, and sadly the citizenry at large, as a vast toilet, ready and able to handle all our societal effluence.

The latest to offer up its downstream product for the Lakes' biosphere is Ontario Power Generation, who hope to make for eternal inclusion there a nuclear waste dump next to Lake Huron.
And, bad news: in the waning days of the unlamented Stephen Harper regime past, the project was approved.

But that's just the beginning of the story.
Joyce Nelson is an award-winning Canadian freelance writer/researcher whose articles appear in the Watershed Sentinel and at Nelson is also an author, some of whose book titles include: 'The Perfect Machine: TV in the Nuclear Age,' 'Sultans of Sleaze: Public Relations and the Media,' 'Sign Crimes/Road Kill: From Mediascape to Landscape,' and the poetry chapbook, 'Battlefronts.'
Her recent article at, 'Great Lakes Nuclear Waste Dump: The Battle Continues' examines the combatants in the far from done deal to dump nuclear waste within a stone's skip of Lake Huron.
Joyce Nelson in the first half.
And; as Barak Obama winds down his second and last term the inmates at the prison he promised to close down on day one of his presidency languish at Guantánamo Bay yet. And, as he has since 2011, Andy Worthington again crossed the Atlantic this year to mark still another anniversary of America's Gitmo gulag.

He was joined in New York by legendary musician and long-time justice advocate, Roger Waters in calling for the release of those remaining in the prison and to kick off the US leg of the Close Guantánamo Campaign. Worthington is also a journalist and author whose book titles include: 'Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo,' and 'The Guantánamo Files: Stories of 774 Detainees in America's Illegal Prison.' He is too co-director of the film, 'Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo.'
Andy Worthington and an end in sight finally for Camp X-Ray's remaining prisoners in the second half.
And; Victoria Street Newz publisher emeritus and CFUV Radio broadcaster, Janine Bandcroft will join us at the bottom of the hour to bring us newz of good goings on for the coming week upon the streets of our town, and beyond there too. But first, enjoining Joyce Nelson and the Great Lakes nuclear battle at the Lake called Huron.

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Wednesday, 1-2pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at:  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, Check out the GR blog at:
Add a comment Add a comment Read more: Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Joyce Nelson, Andy Worthington, Janine Bandcroft Jan. 27, 2016

Court Throws Out Taseko Mines' Defamation Suit Against Environmental Organization

Court exonerates Wilderness Committee in Taseko Mines defamation suit
by Wilderness Committee

January 26, 2016

VANCOUVER - The Wilderness Committee is celebrating a BC Supreme Court ruling that confirmed the environmental group was within its rights to criticize a proposed mine project located west of Williams Lake, BC.
In early 2012, Taseko Mines filed a lawsuit alleging that the Wilderness Committee made defamatory statements about the company's New Prosperity mine project during the public comment period. In the ruling released Monday afternoon, Hon. Mr. Justice Funt dismissed Taseko's claims and awarded the Wilderness Committee court costs as well as extra costs incurred as a result of the lawsuit.
"We are thrilled with this result. We have a responsibility to speak up about industrial projects that threaten the environment – and Taseko's proposed mine would have had a major environmental impact," said Gwen Barlee, National Policy Director with the Wilderness Committee.
"We stood our ground and now we're vindicated."
In February 2014, then Minister of the Environment Leona Aglukkaq announced her decision to reject Taseko's New Prosperity project. The minister stated that the mine was "likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects."

Western Media Eagerly Picks Up Putin Assassination Story

Canada's Mainstream Media All Over Latest 'Putin Maybe Did It' Story
by Roger Annis - New Cold


Jan 25, 2016  

Canada’s mainstream media is all over the finding of a British inquiry that ‘maybe’ President Vladimir Putin had a hand in the killing of Alexander Litvinenko in Britain in 2006.
The British judge presiding over the inquiry into the 2006 killing says there is “strong circumstantial evidence” leading to a “strong probability” that the Russian FSB security agency was responsible for poisoning Litvinenko with plutonium and, further, that Russian President Vladimir Putin “probably approved” the act.
The New York Times reports the inquiry’s conclusion released on January 21 that, “The [radioactive] polonium that was used to poison Mr. Litvinenko … had probably come from a Russian reactor.”
Alexander Litvinenko

Obama Promises War on Way to Syria Peace Talks

On eve of Syria “peace talks,” Washington threatens escalation across region
by Bill Van Auken - WSWS

25 January 2016
With Syria “peace talks” ostensibly set to begin in Geneva today, Washington has ratcheted up threats of US military escalation throughout the region. In the past few days, top US civilian and military officials have declared that they are prepared to seek a “military solution” in Syria, put “boots on the ground” in Iraq and launch another US-NATO war in Libya.
The talks themselves, which are being convened under the auspices of the United Nations, are not expected to begin as scheduled because of continuing sharp differences over what forces will be invited to attend and how the proposed agenda for a “political transition” will affect the future of Syrian President Bashir al-Assad.
The US and its regional allies, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, are insisting that the delegation representing the Syrian opposition be limited to a so-called High Negotiations Committee, an alliance dominated by Islamist militias that was formed under the auspices of the Saudi monarchy.
Russia has opposed the participation in the talks of Salafist militias linked to Al Qaeda, which Washington and its allies have attempted to pass off as “moderate rebels.” It has also backed the participation of the Kurdish YPG militia that has seized substantial territory from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which all sides claim to be fighting.
Meanwhile, Turkey has indicated that it will boycott the talks if the Kurds are allowed to participate.

Stock Buybacks: Nice Racket, or Just Another Wall Street Scam?

Stock Buybacks and the Wall Street Sharktank: “A Whole Lotta Stealin’ Goin’ On”
by Mike Whitney - CounterPunch

January 25, 2016
Let’s say you lend your brother-in-law, Pauli, 5,000-bucks so he can get his fledgling construction business off-the-ground. Then, you find out a week later that ‘good-old Pauli’ has shot the wad playing the horses at Long-acres and buying cocktails for his loafer-friends at Matt’s Mad Dog tavern? Would you feel like you’d been ripped off?
Sure you would. But when some slick corporate fraudster pulls the same scam, no one even raises an eyebrow.
What am I talking about?
I’m talking about the way that corporate bosses are allowed to take the hard-earned money from Mom and Pop investors and divide it among their freeloading shareholder friends via stock buybacks. You see, buybacks have been driving the market higher for the better part of six years, and every year the amount of cash diverted into this swindle gets bigger and bigger.

Losing the Thread: Obama's Actual versus Putin's "Probable" Assassinations

Media More Outraged by Possible Murder by Putin Than Definite Murder by Obama
by Matt Peppe - Just the Facts
January 24,2016

The British government, whose foreign policy is overtly hostile to their Russian counterpart, declared last week that their investigation into the killing of a former Russian intelligence agent in London nearly a decade ago concluded there is a "strong probability" the Russian FSB security agency was responsible for poisoning Alexander Litivenko with plutonium.
They further declared that Russian President Vladimir Putin "probably approved" of the act.

The British investigation, which was likely politically motivated, seemingly raised more questions than it answered. But American corporate media were quick to use the accusations against Putin to demonize him, casting him as a pariah brazenly flaunting his disregard for international conventions.

The Rubble Kingdom: Tomorrow's News Now

Failed States and States of Failure: “We Destroyed the Cities to Save Them” and Other Future Headlines
by Tom Engelhardt - TomDispatch

January 24, 2016
One of the charms of the future is its powerful element of unpredictability, its ability to ambush us in lovely ways or bite us unexpectedly in the ass. Most of the futures I imagined as a boy have, for instance, come up deeply short, or else I would now be flying my individual jet pack through the spired cityscape of New York and vacationing on the moon.
And who, honestly, could have imagined the Internet, no less social media and cyberspace (unless, of course, you had read William Gibson’s novel Neuromancer 30 years ago)?
Who could have dreamed that a single country’s intelligence outfits would be able to listen in on or otherwise intercept and review not just the conversations and messages of its own citizens -- imagine the totalitarian regimes of the twentieth century -- but those of just about anyone on the planet, from peasants in the backlands of Pakistan to at least 35 leaders of major and minor countries around the world? This is, of course, our dystopian present, based on technological breakthroughs that even sci-fi writers somehow didn’t imagine.

And who thought that the Arab Spring or Occupy Wall Street were coming down the pike or, for that matter, a terror caliphate in the heart of the former Middle East or a Donald Trump presidential run that would go from success to success amid free media coverage the likes of which we’ve seldom seen? (Small career tip: don’t become a seer. It’s hell on Earth.)

Losing the Funny: NATO to Reprise Libya Clown Show

Another fine mess: NATO’s 'Laurel & Hardy act' in Libya not getting laughs
by Finian Cunningham - RT

23 Jan, 2016

Washington and its NATO allies are stepping up more military involvement in this devastated North African country, now experiencing an uptick in terrorist activity, in some kind of macabre reprise of the classic comedy routine.

Earlier this week, Libya’s skirmishing factions announced that they were forming a new “national unity government”. The administration, backed by the United Nations, was forged from two erstwhile self-appointed rival governments based in the western city of Tripoli and the eastern city of Tobruk.

But the chances of implementing national governance remain wafer-slim. The real power in the country resides with a plethora of warring militias that have an overlapping relationship with the Islamic State terror group and have carved up the country into fiefdoms.

Attending from the Outside: NEB TranMountain Pipeline Hearing Surrounded by Demonstration

Hundreds Rally Outside NEB Pipeline Hearings: Citizens and First Nations Call on Trudeau to Scrap Kinder Morgan Review
by Wilderness Committee
January 23, 2016
BURNABY, BC - Local residents, First Nations representatives and environmental groups gathered today outside the National Energy Board (NEB) hearings on the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline project to call on the Prime Minister to keep his promise and scrap the flawed federal review process.
Affected communities voiced their opposition to a review that has been widely criticized for ignoring climate change, failing to pursue Indigenous consent, flouting proper procedures and shutting hundreds of people out of the process.

They criticized the makeup of the NEB panel whose members come almost exclusively from the oil and gas sector, and the review process that excludes citizen participation and allows no cross-examination of Kinder Morgan.

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