Blog Roll

Blogspot Archives

Partner Site

Duel in the Sun: America’s Iraqi Clients Play the Al Qaeda Card on Syria

The American client government in Iraq has embarked on a remarkable campaign of diplomatic hostilities with its neighbor, Syria, accusing Damascus of, among other things, the modern-day blood libel that immediate consigns a nation to diplomatic hell, and makes it a target for what George W. Bush used to call “the path of action”: supporting al Qaeda. As Jason Ditz reports, America’s Baghdad satrapy has been broadcasting confessions “obtained” (via “strenuous” but no doubt justified and right-minded interrogation) from captives blamed for the recent bombing attacks that have shaken the PR image of a calmer, surge-soothed Iraq.  The bombings also

Read more»

The River in Reverse: Looking Back at the Drowning of New Orleans

  This piece was written on September 1, 2004: The destruction of New Orleans represents a confluence of many of the most pernicious trends in American politics and culture: poverty, racism, militarism, elitist greed, environmental abuse, public corruption and the decay of democracy at every level. Much of this is embodied in the odd phrasing that even the most circumspect mainstream media sources have been using to describe the hardest-hit victims of the storm and its devastating aftermath: "those who chose to stay behind." Instantly, the situation has been framed with language to flatter the prejudices of the comfortable and

Read more»

Big Brass Bull: Pentagon Deceit on Media Manipulation Confirmed

A few days ago, we noted the revelations by Stars and Stripes that the Pentagon was using a shadowy PR firm to identify the political leanings of journalists trying to cover the "Good War" in Afghanistan (as well as the "Forgotten War" in Iraq). The idea, clearly, was to encourage and reward "pro-war" reporters while planting a big red flag on the backs of any writers considered less than gung-ho about the imperial bloodshed in Muslim lands. Naturally, the Pentagon denied that the vetting program operated by the Rendon Group – which was hired by the Bush gang to help

Read more»

Bait and Switch: Using Diversity to Disguise Inequality

Walter Benn Michaels explores the curious modern sociopolitical concept of “respect,” which is being appropriated by both left and right as a convenient diversion from dealing with the increasing, crushing imbalance of class and wealth in society. While noting — and duly lauding — the (relative) progress made against endemic racism, homophobia and misogyny, Michaels points out this progress, such as it is, has come because it does not threaten the overweening power and privilege of the elite. In fact, some maligned, repressed and persecuted groups of citizens are falling even farther behind: the poor, and those once called the

Read more»

Wrist-slap and Tickle: Obama Goes Mild on CIA Torture

The American political world is shocked – shocked – to discover that the CIA has been torturing some of the victims seized, kidnapped, snatched and literally sold into captivity by America’s Terror Warriors. (Other captives have been tortured by the military, by hired contractors, and by various other organs of the security apparat.) This despite the fact that these tortures – including the threat to kill a captive’s children – have been known for years, reported in the mainstream media and in several books by well-regard writers with highly respectable publishing houses. (I’ve been writing about America’s torture regimen, in

Read more»

Continuity Über Alles: Massaging the Message in Afghanistan

Continuity, continuity, in all things, continuity. This has been the battle cry of Barack Obama’s administration, especially when it comes to waging the Terror Wars — and trying to manipulate public opinion about these intractable conflicts. As Stars and Stripes reports, Obama is paying millions to a shadowy PR firm to "vet" the political leanings of journalists reporting on his ever-expanding "Af-Pak War." This happens to be the same PR firm used by the Bush-Cheney regime to help mislead the nation into the murderous war of aggression against Iraq: the Rendon Group. S&S: As more journalists seek permission to accompany

Read more»

Af-Pak Masquerade: The Untold Truths of War

William Pfaff has the low-down on the empire burlesque going on in Barack Obama’s "Af-Pak" war. The whole piece is well worth reading, but below are a few highlights, including the pearl of wisdom in the first sentence: The problem with U.S.-sponsored elections in Asia and elsewhere in the non-Western world, as in Afghanistan Aug. 20, is that they are sponsored by the United States primarily to legitimize its own presence in the country. This is a truth so self-evident that it should not even have to be said; yet such is the impenetrable ignorance and arrogance of the American

Read more»

Iraq’s Brutal War on Gays: Another “Extraordinary Achievement” of American Militarism

As’ad AbuKhalil points us to this press release from Human Rights Watch, detailing an ongoing campaign of torture and murder against Iraqi homosexuals (and "suspected" homosexuals and men considered not "manly" enough). The killings are being carried out by the sectarian extremists unleashed by the American invasion – including agents of the American-installed government. As HRW reports: Iraqi militias are carrying out a spreading campaign of torture and murder against men suspected of homosexual conduct, or of not being "manly" enough, and Iraq authorities have done nothing to stop the killing… The 67-page report, "‘They Want Us Exterminated’: Murder, Torture,

Read more»