For the first time the UK’s consumer debt exceeds the total of its gross national product: a new report shows that we owe £1.35 trillion. Inspectors in the United States have discovered that 77,000 road bridges are in the same perilous state as the one which collapsed into the Mississippi. Two years after Hurricane Katrina struck, 120,000 people from New Orleans are still living in trailer homes and temporary lodgings. As runaway climate change approaches, governments refuse to take the necessary action. Booming inequality threatens to create the most divided societies the world has seen since before the first world war. Now a financial crisis caused by unregulated lending could turf hundreds of thousands out of their homes and trigger a cascade of economic troubles.These problems appear unrelated, but they all have something in common. They arise in large part from a meeting that took place 60 years ago in a Swiss spa resort. It laid the foundations for a philosophy of government that is responsible for many, perhaps most, of our contemporary crises.
by Bill Van Auken
World Socialist Web Site 16 March 2013
For over a week, the media has subjected the public to a tidal wave of euphoric banality on the Roman Catholic Church’s selection of a new pope.
This non-stop celebration of the dogma and ritual of an institution that for centuries has been identified with oppression and backwardness is stamped with a deeply undemocratic character. It is reflective of the rightward turn of the entire political establishment and its repudiation of the principles enshrined in the US Constitution, including the wall of separation between church and state.
What a far cry from the political ideals that animated those who drafted that document.
by William Blum revolutionradio.org 31 August 2008
1947 to 1951, FRANCE
According to Alfred W. McCoy in The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia, CIA arms, money, and disinformation enabled Corsican criminal syndicates in Marseille to wrestle control of labor unions from the Communist Party. The Corsicans gained political influence and control over the docks — ideal conditions for cementing a long-term partnership with mafia drug distributors, which turned Marseille into the postwar heroin capital of the Western world. Marseille’s first heroin laboratones were opened in 1951, only months after the Corsicans took over the waterfront.
EARLY 1950s, SOUTHEAST ASIA
The Nationalist Chinese army, organized by the CIA to wage war against Communist China, became the opium barons of The Golden Triangle (parts of Burma, Thailand and Laos), the world’s largest source of opium and heroin. Air America, the ClA’s principal airline proprietary, flew the drugs all over Southeast Asia. (See Christopher Robbins, Air America, Avon Books, 1985, chapter 9)
A cabal of intellectuals and elitists hijacked the economic debate, and now we are dealing with the catastrophic effects
The Guardian, Tuesday 28 August 2007
Published: 12 February 2008 – Media Lens
The death of the former Indonesian dictator, Suharto, on January 27 could have unleashed a flood of revelations detailing British and American support for one of the 20th century’s worst mass murderers. Instead, the media continued the cover up that has so far lasted more than forty years.
The 1965-6 massacres that accompanied Suharto’s rise to power claimed the lives of between 500,000 and 1 million people, mostly landless peasants. A 1977 Amnesty International report cited a tally of “many more than one million” deaths. (http://www.fair.org/articles/ suharto-itt.html) In the words of a leaked CIA report at the time, the massacre was “one of the worst mass murders of the 20th century”. (Declassified US CIA Directorate of Intelligence research study, ‘Indonesia – 1965: The Coup That Backfired,’ 1968; http://newsc.blogspot.com/)
Congo has 24 trillion dollars worth of untapped raw mineral deposits, holds 30% of the worlds Diamond reserves, 80% world’s Coltan.
Published: April 16, 2012 – Inform Africa
Since 1998, fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo has been prolonged as a consequence of the country’s vast mineral reserves, which includes diamonds, gold, tungsten, tin and Coltan.
Fighting has thought to have killed an estimated 5.4 million people, despite the continued presence of the world’s largest United Nations peacekeeping operation. (McHaney, S (2009) [Accessed16 June])
In 2008, there were 18,422 personnel at an annual cost of 1.2 billion. It has been widely documented that the production of coltan is ‘fuelling’ the war in Congo. (Vesperini, H (2001) [Accessed 16 June]) Due to this immense wealth of natural resources, various foreign powers, as well as internal, have fought for an advantage.
This is a conflict, which has largely gone unnoticed, and the desire for minerals has far outweighed the concern for life. As one Congolese male stated, it is almost as if the civilian population is an ‘inconvenience’ to the people who possess the mines and its resources. (The Independent, (2006) [Accessed 16 June]) It is these people who therefore are willing to kill, promote violence and prolong instability to keep control of this.
Article originally published by Global Research in 2005, which points to previous attempts to assassinate President Hugo Chavez
by Kurt Nimmo
Published: March 6, 2013 – The 4th Media
This empire, unlike any other in the history of the world, has been built primarily through economic manipulation. “How do we know that the CIA was behind the coup that overthrew Hugo Chávez?” asked historian William Blumin 2002.
“Same way we know that the sun will rise tomorrow morning. That’s what it’s always done and there’s no reason to think that tomorrow morning will be any different.”
Now we have a bit more evidence the CIA and the FBI connived with reactionary elements to not only briefly overthrow Chávez, abolish the constitution and the National Assembly, but later assassinate the Venezuelan State Prosecutor, Danilo Anderson.
He was killed by a car bomb in Caracas on November 18, 2004, while investigating those who were behind the coup. Giovani Jose Vasquez De Armas, a member of Colombia’s right wing paramilitary group called the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, claims he was in charge of logistics for the plot to kill Danilo Anderson.
by Kate Doyle
Published: 1997, Consortium News
Most historians now agree that the CIA-sponsored military coup in 1954 was the poison arrow that pierced the heart of Guatemala’s young democracy. Code-named “PBSUCCESS,” the covert operation overthrew Jacobo Arbenz Guzman, the second legally elected president in Guatemalan history.
Over the next four decades, a succession of military rulers would wage counter-insurgency warfare that also would shred the fabric of Guatemalan society. The violence caused the deaths and disappearances of more than 140,000 Guatemalans. Some human rights activists put the death toll as high as 250,000.