Ta’iz, Yemen: Another Rubbled City in the Endless War

Remaining Peaceful Was Their Choice

by Kathy Kelly - VCNV


December 31, 2017

People living now in Yemen’s third largest city, Ta’iz, have endured unimaginable circumstances for the past three years. Civilians fear to go outside lest they be shot by a sniper or step on a land mine.

Both sides of a worsening civil war use Howitzers, Kaytushas, mortars and other missiles to shell the city.

Residents say no neighborhood is safer than another, and human rights groups report appalling violations, including torture of captives. Two days ago, a Saudi-led coalition bomber killed 54 people in a crowded market place. Before the civil war developed, the city was regarded as the official cultural capital of Yemen, a place where authors and academics, artists and poets chose to live.

Ta’iz 2011 image source: https://rajaalthaibani.
wordpress.com/category/uncategorized/

Add a comment

Read more ...

Gorilla Radio X-Mas/Year-Ender Show with Chris Cook, Ken Boon, Christina Nikolic December 28th, 2017

This Week on GR

by C. L. Cook - Gorilla-Radio.com


December 28, 2017

 

Welcome to the Year-ender show, wherein you'll enjoy seasonally-themed blatherskite, music, and more.

It's been a pretty strange year past, punctuated with highs and lows that, like the weather, have peaked with extraordinary insistence. I think it's a trend we're going to have to learn to adapt to.

As if to echo, the political climate has too been erratic. In British Columbia, our Spring time election witnessed the bizarre, Mugabe-like siege of the Legislature by the Liberals, taking months as it turned out to prise Christy Clark's death-rip from the reins of power before a Summer swearing in of a government of an entirely new stripe.

Or at least, that's how it was advertised.

But as Autumn turned, so did hopes the NDP would prove itself an alternative to the crony capitalist, BCLiberals. Just two weeks ago, the new premier announced the government would continue the course set by Clark and carry the Site C dam project forward - a project with more strikes against it than an English coal mine.

 

Listen. Hear.

 

I hosted quite a few shows about Site C over the last year, (and previous ones too) most frequently speaking with Peace Valley farmer and president of the Peace Valley Landowners Association, Ken Boon. I'll talk to Ken again in the second half of the show to get his take on possible next steps in the continued resistance to this disastrous turn of events.

I'll also talk to long-time Victoria-based green business savant and horticulturalist extraordinaire, Christina Nikolic at the bottom of the hour, taking the pulse of the city and environs with the Left Coast Events bulletin for the X-Mas/New Year's week.

But before letting go the scruff of Christmas past; in a recent interview John Horgan, as if to underline for any still thinking the NDP would change the province's political course announced,

 

"If we’re going to be a government that governs for all British Columbians, we have to set aside our activism and start being better administrators."


Then he began packing a bag for his January trade mission to Asia; where he'll undoubtedly get the opportunity to demonstrate that administrative malleability to Site C contract awardee, CCCI, aka the China Communications Construction Company Ltd.

In the same interview, Horgan also said it wasn't Christmas for him until he'd heard the Pogues song, Fairytale of New York. It seems a fitting companion piece to the beginning of the end of another failed dream of change in BC. Happy Christmas Premier Horgan, this one is for you.

 

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/

 

Read more ...

Professing the Crusade: Shedding Light on Come from the Shadows

Professing the Crusade: Shedding Light on Come from the Shadows

by C. L. Cook - Gorilla-Radio.com


November 23, 2011

 

[Note: This reissued piece I again rescued from a mysterious 'forced retirement' from my websites. - Ape December 2017]

 

I recently interviewed Terry Glavin, author of 'Come from the Shadows: the long and lonely struggle for peace in Afghanistan.' The book is a treatise arguing a necessary continuation of the decades-old war the "West" has waged against "Islamists" and "fascists" in Afghanistan.

The link to an audio file of the interview is here, and square brackets indicate the time where a given quote can be accessed. Glavin's segment begins at [35:30].

Glavin is a Canadian, particularly concerned with Canada's continued contribution to 'The Mission' in Afghanistan. He uses that nation's abject suffering at the hands of the Taliban as justification for the largely unrecorded occupation force slaughter of civilians in their thousands through night raids, drone missile attacks, deaths in custody by torture, (at the hands of Afghan police, military, and the internal security apparatus) and summary execution of suspect "militants." His mission, he claims, is to speak for Afghanistan's women, bringing them universal suffrage and equal rights.

Glavin told me the book was likely to be upsetting and confusing for a lot of readers, saying; "there's gonna be a lot of people it's gonna really hurt them a lot; it's gonna sting." [43:10] "Sting," Glavin says, because Canadians have been made "enfeebled in their understanding on Afghanistan," enfeebled because in his view, "voices and the views and the positions of brown people are ignored and overlooked..."

 

Add a comment
Read more ...

The Mad Folly of John Horgan: BC Premier Defies Reason and the Law to Approve Site C Dam

The Madness of John Horgan

by Ken Boon - Peace Valley Landowner Assoc.


December 23, 2017

 

 The B.C. NDP government announced last week that it would complete the controversial hydroelectric dam rather than cancel the project.

 

The province's independent energy regulator concluded in a report last month that the dam is over budget and behind schedule. By approving Site C, Premier John Horgan has guaranteed that every underpaid and overworked Bob Cratchit in B.C. will pay a heavy price for his bad governance and that First Nations will pay the heaviest price of all in the loss of land and sovereignty.

The Ghost of Muskrat Madness can explain the full tragedy just by describing the disastrous problems at a hydro mega-project in Newfoundland.

Horgan said that in the decision of Site C, consent was not required as the decision to build the dam had already been made. I sometimes wonder if these leaders know how silly they sound with the semantics they use. The BC NDP government was making a critical decision on whether to cancel or proceed with the project. They made the motions of sending Ministers Mungall and Fraser to talk to the treaty 8 Nations.

But they didn’t bother talking to or meeting with First Nation in the province on the impact on them in not being able to produce clean energy because of Site C. Billions of dollars in lost investment. They didn’t calculate that in the cost of Site C and the money that would go into education, day care and hospitals from those projects.

 
Read more ...

Draining Ottawa's Poison Foreign Policy Pustule

Draining Ottawa’s Foreign Policy Swamp

by Yves Engler - Dissident Voice


December 21st, 2017

Drain the swamp’ was a popular Donald Trump campaign slogan that referred to reducing the influence of Washington lobbyists. While the three words reflect an extreme lack of ecological consciousness — wetlands need to be protected and recreated, not destroyed — the image of politicians slogging their way through lobbyist infected, tangled, dense vegetation and deep oozing mud is a useful one.

Like the US capital, much of Ottawa was also built on mosquitoes’ favourite habitat and both cities today have an ongoing pest problem: blood sucking influence peddlers swarming the countries’ decision makers. That image helps explain why there is little deviation from Canada’s official foreign policy positions even amongst social democratic members of Parliament.

The recently re-established Canada-Palestine Parliamentary Friendship Group (CPPFG) offers a window into the dearth of opposition, notably from the NDP, to the foreign policy establishment. Chaired by Liberal MP Marwan Tabbara, CPPFG has nine MPs representing all the parties in the House of Commons except the Conservatives. But, CPPFG isn’t one of 17 official parliamentary associations or groups so it doesn’t receive public financial or administrative support, unlike the Canada-Israel Interparliamentary group.

 

Add a comment

Read more ...

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Ray Grigg, Douglas Gook, Janine Bandcroft Dec. 21, 2017

This Week on GR

by C. L. CookGorilla-Radio.com


December 21, 2017

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Jolly Kwanzaa and a very Cosmic Solstice as we enjoy today the great turning of the Sun too! It's normal at this late date to cast an eye back across the year's happenings and accomplishments, and it's been an eventful year here in BC, with a new government brought in - and brought in in such a novel way.

Many on the greener side of the political spectrum hoped the change would bring with it a new way of looking at the way things are done in this province, and my first guest may well be one of those.

Ray Grigg is the author of seven books on Taoism and Zen, and the columnist behind the long-running environmental column, Shades of Green. He recently released The EcoTrilogy, a compendium of sixteen years worth of his weekly column, comprising the books, Ecologos, Ecopathy, and Ecocide.

 

 

Listen. Hear.

 

Ray Grigg in the first half.

And; where British Columbia's ecological record during the sixteen-plus years reign of the BCLiberal party was never great, the last years, culminating as they did with the Mount Polley mine tailings disaster, proved particularly destructive. So, hope for change was especially buoyant when the electorate discharged the Liberals in favour of a coalition government featuring, for the first time in the nation's history, a Green Party component. But those hopes were dealt a cruel blow last week, when John Horgan's New Democratic Party refused to stop the contentious, and ecologically deleterious, Site C dam project.

Douglas Gook is a Quesnel-based ecology activist and farmer who’s focused on Eco forestry alternatives in the woods there and beyond for more than forty years. The Nechako Lakes Green Party of BC candidate is a director of the BC Environmental Network and Spirit Dance Cooperative Community, and leads Forest Protection Allies, one of the many environmental organizations pressuring government to get effective cleanup processes going, and appropriate compensation for those effected three years after the infamous Mt. Polley spill. He's also one of a growing chorus who do not accept the Site C decision as final.

Douglas Gook maintaining the fight against Site C in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and CFUV Radio broadcaster at-large, Janine Bandcroft will join us at the bottom of the hour with the Left Coast Events bulletin of good things you can get up to around here in the coming week. But first, Ray Grigg and The EcoTrilogy.

 

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca.  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/
Add a comment
Read more ...

Taibbi Breathing for Eric Garner

I Can't Breathe: Matt Taibbi's scorching book on the murder of Eric Garner and the system that let the killers get away with it

by Cory Doctorow - BoingBoing


December 15, 2017

 

Matt Taibbi is one of the best political writers working in the USA today, someone who can use the small, novelistic details of individuals' lives to illuminate the vast, systemic problems that poison our lives and shame our honor; his 2014 book The Divide conducts a wide-ranging inquiry into the impunity of corporate criminals and the kafkaesque injustices visited on the poor people they victimize; in I Can't Breathe: A Killing on Bay Street, Taibbi narrows his focus to the police murder of Eric Garner, a Staten Island fixture and father, and the system that put murderers in uniform in his path.

Taibbi opens the book with a masterful, novelistic account of the racial divide in Staten Island, the brutal impunity of the NYPD, the lives of the people they stalk, humiliate, beat, and frame.

He introduces us to Tomkins Park, the neighborhood where Eric Garner was a fixture, selling untaxed cigarettes he brought in from out of state, and to Garner himself, a complicated, funny, bright, unlucky, likable man whose bad luck and bad choices had put him on that corner, selling smokes to keep his family fed, clothed and sheltered.

As Taibbi unravels the story of Garner, the circumstances that led to him being choked to death by a group of police officers who went on to terrorize Garner's friend for recording a video of the murder and releasing it, who faced no meaningful penalties -- and who, we learn, had long rapsheets for brutal, sadistic policing, he weaves the long history and diverse social and political circumstances that led to that moment.


Add a comment

Read more ...

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Ingmar Lee Dec. 14, 2017

This Week on GR

by C. L. Cook - Gorilla-Radio.com


December 14, 2017

It’s been two weeks since the ATB, or Articulated Tanker Barge, Jake Shearer separated from its 10,000 ton tanker load of Alaska-bound crude oil off Hecate Strait along British Columbia’s mid-coast region.

Less than a nautical mile from disaster, the stormy weather very nearly dashing the barge onto Gosling Rocks, where the result would surely have been the long-predicted Exxon Valdez-like ruination of one of the World’s most precious natural marine environments.

Whether by luck, or some divine intervention, that disaster did not take place November 30th, 2017, but the threat remains, and it’s only a matter of time before it does happen.

Listen. Hear.

 

Ingmar Lee is a long-time, BC-based environmental defender. From the Nanaimo watershed and first-growth valley bottoms of Vancouver Island, to the nuclear plant-threatened coastline of India, and the threatened shores and Sandhill Crane nesting grounds of British Columbia’s mid-coast, Ingmar has advocated for and stood between an increasingly fragile ecosystem and the rapine destructiveness of big business and its government enablers. For this he’s been arrested and charged in the courts, and had his name traduced and character vilified in the corporate and state media. Yet though he persists in defense of the wild world.

Ingmar Lee and the long fight for the embattled natural world in a special end of year Gorilla Radio presentation.

 

Add a comment

Read more ...

Why Honduras Matters: Revisiting Fifty Years of Oppression

Why the Honduras Crisis Matters to Me

by Rick Sterling - Dissident Voice


December 12th, 2017 

 

  
For seven months in 1969 I hitch-hiked around the US, Mexico and Central America with my best friend from high school. Some class-mates from our school in Vancouver Canada saved their money then travelled to Europe or Australia but Ollie and I headed south.

It was an eye-opening experience for two middle class Canadians. We had a lot of learning experiences in the US but today I want to talk about Honduras because it is in crisis as I write this: the Honduran election took place on 26 November yet the results are still in contention.

Will the current right wing government manage to retain power?

 

 

Add a comment
Read more ...

"I Have No Choice" Says BC Premier

"I Have No Choice" Says BC Premier

by C. L. Cook - Pacific Free Press


December 11, 2017

Today's is a date that will live in infamy in British Columbia. On the 20th anniversary of the precedent setting Delgamuukw decision on First Nations rights and treaty-making, the New Democratic Party has turned its back on First Nations' objections to a mega project that will submerge the spirit of that decision, washing away those rights as surely as the rising waters of the Peace River.

In announcing the decision to continue the controversial project, NDP leader, John Horgan insisted, "I had no choice." Now, it's clear, voters in BC have no political alternative to the corporate BC Liberals, who initiated Site C, a project not only environmentally, culturally, and politically devastating for the province, but also a white elephant certain to be financially crippling for generations to come.

As disappointing as the NDP volte-face on Site C has been, the tepid objections to it raised by Green Party of BC leader, Andrew Weaver convinces too, any hope British Columbia's polity had to reverse the rapine, business as usual, corporate friendly ideology emanating from Victoria will have to wait at least another generation.

For those voters wishing real change, Horgan's weak invocation of "no choice" today rings with a bitter irony his party will soon learn to its' regret.

 

 

Add a comment

How to Address (and finally end) Male Sexual Violence

Radical feminism is the only solution to men’s ongoing ‘sexual misconduct’

by Robert Jensen - feminist current


December 10, 2017

 

Radical feminism challenges us to be better than our patriarchal culture asks of us — to reject patriarchy’s glorification of control, conquest, and aggression.

 

I’m not surprised,” women say, in response to the flood of revelations of sexual “misconduct” by men, especially men in positions of power. But none of us — women or men — should be surprised, because the United States is a patriarchal society and in patriarchy men routinely claim the right to own or control women’s bodies for reproduction and sexual pleasure.

Men — liberal and conservative — know that just as well as women. In such a society, conservative and liberal men will often disagree in public about the conditions under which they can rightly claim ownership. Conservative men argue for control of women within the heterosexual family. Liberal men argue for more expansive access to women. In public, the policy debates about reproductive rights and sexual access rage on.

In private, conservative and liberal men claim their “right” to do as they please, which is why women sometimes find it difficult to tell conservative and liberal men apart when it comes to behavior.

 

Add a comment
Read more ...

Can We Transcend the Tribal?

I’m Not Racist, Am I?

by Gilad Atzmon


December 11, 2017

I'm Not Racist: The video below is rapper’s Joyner Lucas' "I'm Not Racist." It's uncomfortable for some of us to watch, but within a few days it was viewed by 12 million people.The video opens with a big white man in a "Make America Great Again" hat ‘speaking his mind,’ by expressing what many white Americans believe about blacks. In the second verse, the song takes a surprising turn -- a young black man in dreadlocks tells his story and counters each of the white man’s identitarian generalizations.

 

 

Why has I’m Not Racist attracted millions of viewers? Because unlike Western academia, media, politicians and progressives who try to suppress the way people think and express themselves, the artist here attempts to reshape the universe, offering a prospect of unity. While oligarchs and their identitarian lapdogs push us into race wars, religious conflicts, immoral interventionist disasters and identity battles, beauty focuses on the universal. Art shows us how to escape from the dystopia inflicted by the Soroses and their cultural and political mercenaries.

 

Add a comment
Read more ...

Page 7 of 1241