default.html Issue 106
Table of Contents

On Bended Knee II: The Media Treatment Of Bush

by Jeff Elliott Like Reagan, Bush had a watershed event in his first year, and the press began to treat him gently after Sept. 11, just as the media went easy on Reagan after the assassination try. Now that he was commander in chief of a nation at war, any debate about his presidential legitimacy ended abruptly. Another way to put it: The Y2000 election controversy ended the moment the jets smashed into the World Trade Center and Pentagon

Psy-Ops: The Fine Art Of War Propaganda

by Jeff Elliott Part ad men and part ethnographers, these specialists, some of whom are just back from Afghanistan, are dispatched regularly to front lines in the Middle East for hearts-and-minds campaigns aimed at undercutting the enemy's military morale and winning over civilian support. Many are waiting eagerly for a call to Iraq. With the U.S. military deploying in every corner of the globe, demand is booming in the psychological warfare industry these days, and Psy-ops is especially eager to recruit outsiders who have experience or interest in the Middle East

Enviros Fear Bush May Undo Decades Of Progress

by J.R. Pegg Conservation and environmental groups are bracing themselves for what they say will be an unprecedented assault on environmental laws in the new Congress and throughout the next two years of the Bush administration. Across the board on issues of clean air, clean water and natural resource conservation, the Bush administration has already demonstrated its willingness to override public opinion and public health concerns to weaken environmental regulations, according to a panel of environmental experts speaking at a press briefing today in Washington.

Media All-stars Applaud Journalist, Ignore His Story

by Lucy Komisar Colombian journalist Ignacio Gomez told a roomful of America's most influential journalists Tuesday how Washington-supported Colombian president Alvaro Uribe is connected to drug traffickers and how U.S. military trainers helped organize a massacre in his country. As they do every year at the CPJ event, "leading" U.S. journalists lauded the courage of people chancing death for telling the truth, but continue to pull punches in their own news organizations

Election Lesson For Demos: Turn Left

by Neil Wollman The message of the midterm, say some commentators, is that the Democrats did not have a distinctive message÷or even a unified one. Yet others are saying that Democrats should avoid moving to the "left," where presumably they would have a more distinctive message than preaching the mixed message of moderation. What's a poor Democrat to do?

Trent Lott's Whole Lot Of Trouble

by Jim Lobe "This was one of the few situations I've seen where the public thinks something is more important than what the press thinks," said David Bositis, a political analyst for the Joint Centre for Political and Economic Studies, a think-tank that focuses on the situation of black citizens. "The fact is, the public was really very outraged by what Lott said." Lott apologized in a written statement as soon as the story reached the Washington press, saying his remarks were a "poor choice of words." In the collegial, old-boys' ambiance of the Senate most of his colleagues, including Democrats, accepted the apology and shrugged it off. But the popular controversy continued to grow

The Heritage Of Trent Lott

by Jim Lobe While national Republican candidates, beginning with Nixon, virtually never made explicitly racist appeals, they developed code words and symbols, such as "law and order," "states' rights," and opposition to "affirmative action," which were designed precisely to appeal to white racists, both in the north and the south. Ronald Reagan opened his presidential campaign in 1980 by voicing support for states' rights in Philadelphia, Mississippi, where a local police chief led a mob in the murder of three civil-rights workers in 1964. At the time, Reagan denied that he was against civil rights

Lott Support Cuts Bush Credibility With Blacks

by Earl Ofari Hutchinson GOP progress in breaking the Democrats' hold on the black vote was all but lost when President Bush rebuked but did not instantly remove Senate Majority leader Trent Lott. Blacks will pull the Democratic lever again in 2004. The irony is that before Lott's outburst, Bush had softened that negative image

Bush Finds Tough Going With Terror War Allies

by Jim Lobe Hawks in the administration of U.S. President George W. Bush received a rude reminder this week that Washington's vaunted power to determine the course of events around the world is more limited than perhaps they had thought

Bush May Dump Anti-Castro Aide In Top Latin Post

by Jim Lobe The champion of the hard-line, anti-Castro crowd in Miami had hoped that President George W. Bush would have announced his intention to re-nominate him to the position of assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere Affairs, the post he held until a week ago when his unusual one-year appointment expired. But to the growing distress of his Cuban-American supporters, the White House has not indicated whether it intends to re-nominate Reich, and signs are growing that his prospects for returning to his seventh-floor office in the State Department are questionable

Spain Oil Slick Reaches Prize Environmental Shore

by Tito Drago The black tide caused by the leaking oil tanker Prestige has reached the beaches of Spain's autonomous community of Galicia, endangering the area's prized shellfish beds and biologically diverse estuaries, report activists and officials

Spain Sues Oil Spill Tanker Owner, Operator, Captain

With the Spanish government under mounting criticism at home and abroad for its role in the "Prestige" oil spill disaster, Justice Minister Jose Mar’a Michavila December 10 announced legal proceedings against the owners, operators and captain of the sunken oil tanker

Free Leonard Peltier, Canadian Judges, Parliment Ask U.S.

by Mark Bourrie "At a time when we are concerned in general about the possibility of people being falsely incriminated by an overzealous American administration, we would do well to be reminded and instructed to Mr. Peltier's case," said Bill Blaikie, a senior member of the left-of-center New Democratic party. "Here was a case with an obvious political dimension and, as a result of evidence that was manufactured, Mr. Peltier, who did not believe he would be treated fairly in the United States, was extradited," he added. Canada's parliamentary debate, which did not include a vote, was co-sponsored by John Reynolds, deputy leader of the right-of-center Canadian Alliance Party. Reynolds has campaigned for several years for Peltier's release

Afghan "Nation Building" On Back Burner

by Mushahid Hussain Possible American military action against Iraq and unfulfilled promises of massive, much-needed foreign aid to Kabul, could complicate an already difficult situation. The U.S.-led "war on terror" is already in stalemate, given that Osama bin Laden, his chief lieutenant Dr Ayman al Zawahiri, who allegedly sent an audiotaped message of defiance to Qatar-based Al Jazeerah television, and former Taliban supremo, Mullah Omar, remain at large. In an Oct. 14 interview, Afghanistan's Foreign Minister Dr. Abdullah Abdullah expressed his concern that "in the event of any attack on Iraq, the terrorists will try to destabilise Afghanistan"

Murderer Of Abortion Dr. Appears To Prepare "Justifiable Homicide" Defense

by Frederick Clarkson The trial of James C. Kopp, the confessed murderer of abortion provider Dr. Barnett Slepian, is shaping up as a showcase for the revolutionary religious and political views of the once-obscure Army of God

Controversy Over Bill Gates' AIDS Grant To India

by Ranjit Devraj A $100 million grant to fight HIV/AIDS in India, announced by the world's richest man Bill Gates soon after he landed in the national capital Nov. 11, has been mired in controversy since policy makers began to suspect a hidden U.S. agenda behind the largesse

Israel Denies Education To Palestinians, UN Says

by Thalif Deen Palestinian children are being denied their right to education because of Israeli-imposed restrictions in occupied territories, said the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). These restrictions include military curfews, closures of schools and home confinement

Judge Knocks GAO Out of Cheney Task Force Lawsuit

The GAO was refused legal standing by a federal judge December 9 in its attempt to get records related to Vice President Dick Cheney's Energy Task Force. Saying it has every legal right to see these records, the GAO is considering an appeal of the decision. "Judge Bates' decision to shield the activities of Vice President Cheney's secretive energy task force seems to be more about politics than the law," said NRDC attorney Sharon Buccino

UN Fumes As U.S. Breaks Agreement On Iraq Report

by Haider Rizvi U.S. officials took possession of the 12,000 page document Sunday despite an earlier understanding among the 15 members of the Security Council that the UN weapons inspectors should have time to look over the report before it was distributed to all members of the Council. U.S. officials justified the move on security grounds, arguing they did not want detailed information on nuclear weapons production to get into the hands of nations that might be pursuing weapons programs

Of Course Iraq War Crisis Is About Oil, Say Industry Experts

by Humberto Marquez Mahzar Al-Shereidah, a Venezuela-based oil industry analyst, says he believes "the main confrontation of the United States is not with Iraq. That is just a pretext, or an opportunity. The dispute is with the European Union, Japan, Russia and China, so that they accept Washington's hegemonic role.... An operation that would allow the placement of a puppet government in Iraq would give the United States the keys to 65 percent of the world's petroleum reserves," added the expert

Poorest Nations Compete For Aid Under Bush Plan

by Jim Lobe Some hailed the proposed Millennium Challenge Account (MCA) as a possible breakthrough in improving the effectiveness as well as the amount of U.S. aid. Others feared that the plan may lead to greater marginalisation of poor countries that fail to meet the strict conditions determining which countries will be eligible for the aid. If approved by Congress, it will substantially reverse a gradual, 20-year decline in U.S. foreign aid that has made Washington the stingiest aid-giver of all Western industrialized nations as a percentage of its GDP. In fact, current U.S. performance is considered so poor that even an increase of $5 billion a year in bilateral aid in 2006 will not lift its ranking

Iraq's "Apology" To Kuwait Interpreted As Threat

by N. Janardhan Saddam's apology was part of a series of concessions under pressure in an effort to escape war. It came simultaneously with his compliance with a Sunday deadline to deliver a declaration of his banned weapons programmes to the United Nations. "The message is an unveiled attempt to create a rift in the united ranks of the Kuwaiti people and leadership," said Kuwaiti Information Minister Sheikh Ahmad al Fahd al Sabah. Saddam should apologize first to the Iraqis for "dragging them into wars." Then, Sheikh Ahmed told the Kuwaiti News Agency, he should apologize to Kuwait by releasing 600 prisoners of war and "respecting our sovereignty."

China's Sweatshop Toy Industry Dependent On U.S.

by Antoaneta Bezlova As more of the world's Christmas glitter is being made in China, cut-throat competition and lack of labor protection laws have transformed Santa's workshops into appalling sweatshops where 1.5 million Chinese peasant girls work 12 or even 14 hours a day, inhaling toxic fumes

Little Good News For Bush From Iraq War "Allies"

by Jim Lobe Hawks in the administration of U.S. President George W. Bush received a rude reminder this week that Washington's vaunted power to determine the course of events around the world is more limited than perhaps they had thought. They had hoped to focus world opinion on Iraq's submission of an allegedly deceptive and incomplete inventory of its missiles and weapons of mass destruction (WMD) to the United Nations Security Council in order to ease the way for an invasion of Iraq by mid-February. But all they got was aggravation, complaints, and defiance -- from friends and foes alike

Canada Ratifies the Kyoto Climate Protocol

The Parliament of Canada voted December 10 to ratify the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, bringing the treaty to limit greenhouse gases one step closer to entry into force. Environmentalists cheered the vote, but industry remains opposed to the binding emissions limits

S Korea Election A Major Defeat For Bush

by Jim Lobe The victory Wednesday of governing party candidate Roh Moo-hyun in South Korea's presidential elections marks a serious setback for the Bush administration's hard line against North Korea, as well as its hopes for beefing up its military position in Asia

Health Risks Of Common Chemical Far Worse Than Suspected

by Jim Newman Researchers have discovered that certain chemical ingredients of gasoline, jet fuel and other solvents may pose a greater health hazard than first thought

Oil Companies Confess To Illegal Deals

by Julio Godoy Oil companies Elf Aquitaine, TotalFina, and TotalFinaElf, have admitted to crimes including illegal payments to officials in Africa, as well as resorting to human rights abuses in Southeast Asia to win contracts

Court Gives Scientists Access To "Kennewick Man"

by Diana Leal The research will follow a long fight by U.S. Natives and their supporters, who say the "Kennewick Man" is a Native American who should be respectfully returned to his resting place without tests being performed. The scientists argue that analyzing the remarkably well-preserved skeleton could answer some important questions about how the first people came to North America. A federal court recently agreed, setting aside a previous decision to classify the skeleton as Native American. It ruled that scientists will be allowed to study the remains

Feds OK Navy Sonar Tests Likely To Harm Whales

A federal judge has lifted a worldwide ban on the U.S. Navy's experimental new sonar system, clearing the way for limited testing of the controversial system. The judge approved an agreement reached by the Navy and a coalition of environmental groups who seek to limit the sonar's potential impacts on marine mammals

Sept. 11 Probe Being Led By Coverup Expert

by Robert Scheer Even if truth serum could be slipped into his morning espresso, Kissinger still would be an appalling choice to lead what should be the fearless, unbiased fact-finding investigation necessary to prevent future tragedies like the destruction of the World Trade Center towers

Lott's Love Affair With Racism

by Robert Scheer

Race-baiting is what gave the GOP dominance in the Deep South, and Lott has long been one of its main practitioners. Despite Lott's various stabs at apology, what he will not concede is that racism Ń real, powerful, cancerous Ń continues to haunt the nation

What if the Hunt for 'Evildoers' Aimed at Us?

by Robert Scheer Certainly no other nation has been willing to allow deeply suspicious foreign experts access to every nook and cranny, even the dictator's bedroom, to ensure that bad things are not being done. And the Bush administration acknowledges that its satellites and other means of intelligence have failed to provide a smoking gun to refute Iraq's accounting of its own program

Dr. Laura's Sick Family Values

by Robert Scheer Some family values. Your 77-year-old mother lies dead and decomposing for two months in a condominium not far from the radio complex where you sternly hector millions about how to live a moral life while attacking those who "deviate." And you never bothered once to inquire how your own mom was doing? Maybe send a minion over to knock on the door once in a while? For two months, the mail piled up, the condo fees went unpaid, and you, successful syndicated radio advice guru "Dr. Laura" Schlessinger, never noticed these and other worrying signs that, as the police suggested, your mother may have been murdered?

Bush Hawks Want Military Occupation Of Postwar Iraq

by Jim Lobe The neo-conservatives in Rumsfeld's and Cheney's office see the invasion of Iraq as the first step in a profound transformation of the Arab world. They have argued for establishing a U.S. military occupation similar to that which followed World War II in Germany and Japan. Indeed, a seminar held just this week by the conservative American Enterprise Institute (AEI), which has increasingly taken on the role of policy think-tank for the Pentagon hawks, was devoted to how to carry out a 'de-Baathification' of Iraq, just as the U.S. carried out a 'de-Nazification' of Germany almost 60 years ago

Rising Tensions Between Iran Moderates, Religious Right

by N Janardhan Iran is in the midst of its worst political crisis since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, but regional analysts are downplaying predictions of another revolution stemming from current student unrest and calls for greater openness

Canadian Native "Lost Souls" Return Home For Burial

by Marty Logan Haida drums pounded softly, like distant thunder, as a group of red and black-cloaked Natives from the rain-drenched islands of Canada's Pacific coast sang and danced to prepare the remains of 46 ancestors for the trip home from a museum here. The bones have been stored in the American Museum of Natural History since a museums collector looted graves in villages on Haida Gwaii (officially called the Queen Charlotte Islands) at the beginning of the last century

Chicken, Turkey May Contain Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria

by J.R. Pegg New studies, one from Consumer Reports and another jointly produced by the Sierra Club and the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), raise concerns that Americans are increasingly likely to purchase chicken contaminated with strains of salmonella or campylobacter bacteria that are resistant to one or more antibiotics often used to treat people

U.S. Saudi Relations At New Low

by N Janardhan Allegations by U.S. government agencies and congressmen that Saudi Arabia had financed the Sept. 11 hijackers have not only brought bilateral ties to a new low, but are meant to pressure Riyadh into joining a possible war on Iraq, say Arab analysts

Chemical Arms Inspectors Slowed By Cash Shortfall

by Thalif Deen The international body responsible for overseeing the destruction of over 70,000 tons of chemical agents worldwide is complaining that its inspections are being slowed by a shortage of funds. Recently, the OPCW has made fewer inspections than planned in the chemical industry because of the funding difficulties

Canadian Scrambles To Apologize For Bush "Moron" Remark

by David Beers Negotiating from weakness is a fact of life for Canada when it sits down at the table with the United States, whether to discuss the price of lumber, grain or offing Saddam Hussein. In fact, that's what U.S. relations really mean to most Canadians -- one endless, lopsided negotiation

The Rise And Fall Of Saudi Prince Bandar

by Jim Lobe In the 1980s, he was treated as a comrade-in-arms in the war against communism at the home of CIA director William Casey, as honored guest at banquets of neo-conservatives celebrating the "Reagan Doctrine," and he was the toast of Ronald Reagan himself in the White House dining room. Now, just over a decade later, his wife is accused by powerful senators and media of supporting terrorism; his country is charged with "duplicity" in the war against al-Qaeda; and increasingly shrill calls for the overthrow of his family's rule are proliferating across Washington

Trade Talks Seek To Eliminate Civil Service Jobs

by Diane Solomon With almost no media attention, a trade agreement administered by the World Trade Organization may put public and private sector services -- including water, energy, education, accounting -- even mail delivery -- on the corporate auction block

Nicotine Patches, Gum, Don't Help

by Nancy Stringer Nicotine patches and nicotine gum no longer help smokers quit for the long term, according to a new study by cancer researchers at the University of California, San Diego. At the same time, the number of people trying to quit using these nicotine replacement therapies (NRT). Pharmaceutical aids have never proven beneficial for lighter smokers

U.S. Stands Alone In Accusing Iraq Of "Material Breach"

by Thalif Deen The United States was the lone voice in the 15-member United Nations Security Council on Thursday accusing Iraq of "material breach" of its obligations to cooperate with UN arms inspectors in their search for weapons of mass destruction

Peace Movement Can Build On Bush Efforts To Discredit Iraq Arms Inspection

by Jeremy Brecher Instead of claiming the inspections as a success, the Bush Administration may go on sabotaging the inspection process, even though the American people and the whole rest of the world want it to work. But if they do, they will court political isolation abroad and at home

HBO "Live From Baghdad" Peddles Old Lie

by Lucy Komisar When HBO airs "Live From Baghdad," the drama that purports to tell the true story of a cable news crew broadcasting during the Gulf War will propagate a proven lie. The film's uncritical treatment of an old charge that Iraqi soldiers threw babies out of incubators is disturbing as America and Iraq lie on the brink of war

INS Arrests Foreign Visitors Who Followed Law

by Shadi Rahimi On Dec. 16, more than 500 men and boys from Middle Eastern and African countries complied with orders to appear for what was advertised as a special Immigration and Naturalization Service registration program -- only to be arrested by INS agents

INS Arrests Inconsistent, Show Lack Of D.C. Leadership

by William O. Beeman The government's disregard for basic civil and legal rights on Dec. 16 and the days following was blatant. One group of men from San Francisco was moved to Oakland, Arizona, Denver, Kentucky, back to Oakland, then to Bakersfield, Calif., and finally to a private detention facility in Otay Mesa outside of San Diego. Despite the fact that the Dec. 16 deadline has passed, immigration attorneys say men are still coming in to register and are being immediately arrested for reporting late. Yet INS regulations state that individuals should only be detained if they willfully refuse to comply with the reporting requirement

Cities Declare "Civil Liberties Safe Zones" To Fight Patriot Arrests

by Mary Jo McConahay Twenty years ago, Americans across the country opened churches and homes to save the lives of refugees of Central American civil wars -- violating U.S. immigration laws and putting pressure on U.S. policy south of the border. Now, as Middle Eastern immigrants lose rights at the hands of Homeland Security enforcers, cities and churches are starting a renewed sanctuary movement

Canada Newest Member of U.S. Enemies' List

by Randolph T. Holhut Canada even gone as far to warn its naturalized citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan and Syria to steer clear of the U.S., after a Syrian-born Canadian that the U.S. suspected of terrorism links was deported after he was detained while he traveling through the U.S. The U.S. claims Canada is not serious about fighting terrorism and that its immigration policies are too lax -- so much so that Canada could be a haven for Al Qaeda operatives. But does the U.S. have the right to tell its neighbor how much to spend on its military, how to police its borders and how to conduct its foreign policy?

Liberals Need Their Own Media Machine

by Randolph T. Holhut I have no problem with Fox News' right-wing bias or the preponderance of conservative talk shows or the conservative tilt of most newspapers' op-ed pages. I'd just like to see a liberal equivalent. There is no liberal daily newspaper in the U.S. that's equivalent to British newspapers such as the Guardian and the Independent (and don't tell me that The New York Times, The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times fill that niche). And for all the talk about how "liberal" the news operations at ABC, CBS, NBC or CNN are, they are hardly mouthpieces for the Democratic Party. Just ask Bill Clinton or Al Gore

Killing Miranda

by Charles Sheehan-Miles What events could possibly lead Bush to champion a police state over liberty? In the case, Chavez v. Martinez, the U.S. government supports a police officer who interrogated a man the police shot 5 times, once in the face. The injured man also demanded that the questioning stop, but the officer continued his interrogation until the injured man fell into unconsciousness

A Tale Of Two Brothers

by Christopher Brauchli The good news is that Whitey is probably not murdering people anymore. The bad news is he's still at large. Billy won't do anything to help change that

Oil Is Focus Of Venezuela's Crisis

by Humberto Marquez The strike, along with daily protests and nightly pot-banging demonstrations in Caracas and other cities, are backing the demand set forth by opposition parties, business associations and trade unions that Chavez, whose term ends in 2006, step down or agree to an early 2003 referendum on whether or not he should stay in office. "The United States should worry about what is happening in Venezuela, because it will need steady supplies if it goes to war against Iraq"

For Big Bucks, Giuliani Joins Mexico City Crime War

by Diego Cevallos Former New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani has begun to advise local officials in Mexico City -- where most crimes go unreported, and 93 percent of those that are investigated go unsolved -- for a fee of $4.3 million. "Giuliani is being contracted just like a great chef could be hired to cook the best baked turkey recipe. But the chef is going to show up and find that there is no turkey" -- in other words, no adequately trained police force capable of implementing a zero tolerance policy, said ICESI director Luis de la Barreda

A Few Quotes To Live By

by Molly Ivins "A time comes when silence is betrayal. Even when pressed by the demands of inner truth, men do not easily assume the task of opposing their government's policy, especially in time of war. Nor does the human spirit move without great difficulty against all the apathy of conformist thought, within one's own bosom and in the surrounding world." -- Dr. M.L. King Jr.

Mr. Scrooge Would Love The Republicans

by Molly Ivins When Bush was running for the presidency in 2000, the feds released their annual report on hunger in America, and Texas was once again in its perennial spot at the top of the list, No. 1 in Hunger. Bush thought it was some dastardly scheme by the Clinton administration to make Texas, and hence Bush, look bad. He denied there were any hungry people in Texas and said, "You'd think the governor would have heard if there are pockets of hunger in Texas." Yeah, you would. But look on the bright side: so he didn't know there's hunger in Texas after six years in office; after only two years in Washington, he's discovered the problem. Sort of

Holday Book List

by Molly Ivins One of the best books written about Enron & Etc. is a novel, "Moral Hazard" by Kate Jennings. How often do you finish a sensitive, well-written book, look up and say, "Good Lord, let's regulate derivatives"

Pentagon Again Pushing Disinfomation Office

by Molly Ivins The concept of a Pentagon disinformation office is back. "The Defense Department is considering issuing a secret directive to American military to conduct covert operations aimed at influencing public opinion and policymakers in friendly and neutral nations," reports The New York Times. "The proposal has ignited a fierce battle throughout the Bush administration over whether the military should carry out secret propaganda missions in friendly nations like Germany. ..." This is the same stupid idea that was beaten back last February when the Pentagon had to disband its Office of Strategic Influence when it was pointed out that the thing was guaranteed to backfire

Bush Appoints Usual Scoundrels

by Molly Ivins Some of you may have thought that the problem was unnerved investors, profoundly uneasy about putting money into a stock market so rigged by Wall Street it is an open, running scandal. But GeeDubya clearly sees beyond such petty concerns and so has named as his top regulator the man who advocates looser accounting standards for foreign firms doing business here. Heaven forfend that foreign firms should have to live up to those tight accounting standards demanded of Enron, WorldCom and Tyco. Yep, this Donaldson is clearly our boy

The Old War Criminal Is Back

by Molly Ivins Two generations of Americans have come to adulthood since Henry Kissinger last held political power, so I need to explain that War Criminal is not an affectionate sobriquet: The man is, in fact, a war criminal -- wanted for questioning in Chile, Argentina and France (concerning French citizens who disappeared in Chile). He cannot travel to Britain, Brazil and many other countries because they cannot guarantee his immunity from legal proceedings

Top Buzzwords Of 2002

by Norman Solomon "Terrorism" is applied quite selectively rather than evenhandedly. When the day comes that news outlets accord the life of a Palestinian child the same reverence as the life of an Israeli child, we'll know that media coverage has moved beyond craven mediaspeak to a single standard of human rights

Media Downplays Risks Of War Casualties

by Norman Solomon Media critiques usually steer clear of moral concern. They're much more likely to focus on false claims about technical performances: whether "smart bombs" were truly accurate, whether cruise missiles strayed off course, and so forth. But the greatest deception of the Gulf War was far more profound. "In manipulating the first and often most lasting perception of Desert Storm," wrote Sloyan, "the Bush administration produced not a single picture or video of anyone being killed. This sanitized, bloodless presentation by military briefers left the world presuming Desert Storm was a war without death"

Media Year 2002, R.I.P.

by Norman Solomon The numbing effects of corporatized media, it seems to me, fit in comfortably with the kind of militarism that runs through American society and gets unleashed periodically with yet another war blessed by the man in the bully pulpit at the White House

Sean Penn's Image Gives Way To Substance

by Norman Solomon At a time when fame is so routinely seen as an end in itself, or as a way to accumulate more wealth and power, Penn has become conspicuous for his willingness to take some real risks on behalf of peace. Predictably, the vilification began immediately from jingoistic media outlets like Fox News Channel and the New York Post. Distortion is a big business

Phil Berrigan And The Challenge Of Protest

by Alexander Cockburn Challenge America's weapons of mass destruction and its nuclear palaces, and the state locks you up. Phil Berrigan spent about 11 years in prison in the cause of peace and disarmament

But Strom Did Win In 1948

by Alexander Cockburn Strom Thurmond won in 1948, to the extent that the Democratic Party took his point entirely to heart. When the Mississippi Freedom Delegation tried to seat itself in the Democratic Convention of 1964, the party regulars, including Northern liberals like Hubert Humphrey and Walter Mondale, fought savagely and successfully to drive them out. It was in practical recognition of Thurmond's victory that Michael Dukakis began his presidential campaign in 1988, catering to Dixie prejudices in the Deep South, that Bill Clinton played to the same gallery in his campaign, railing at Sister Souljah and OK-ing the execution of a black man with some of his brain missing

Gore Bravely Cut Off His Funding With Anti-War Stance

by Alexander Cockburn When Gore took his stance against the attack on Iraq he was parting ways with a group that has underwritten his political career these past 30 years, a group among whose prime features has been unswerving advocacy of the most hawkish Israeli positions. Is the moral that no Democratic candidate can afford to take any position athwart that of Israel's hawks and their promoters here? It certainly looks like it

No Child Left Alone By Military Recruiters

by Leah C Wells The No Child Left Behind act paves the way for the military to have unimpeded access to underage students who are ripe for solicitation for the military. This blatant contradiction of prior federal law is not only an invasion of students' privacy but an assault on their educational opportunities

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