Out Damn Blot – A Letter to Colin Powell By Ray McGovern

Dandelion Salad

By Ray McGovern
08/16/08 “ICH”
Consortium News

Dear Colin,

You have said you regret the “blot” on your record caused by your parroting spurious intelligence at the U.N. to justify war on Iraq. On the chance you may not have noticed, I write to point out that you now have a unique opportunity to do some rehab on your reputation.

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Putin’s Winning Hand By Mike Whitney + video

Dandelion Salad

By Mike Whitney
08/16/08 “ICH”

Once the Atlantic Alliance is shattered, America’s lifeline to the world is kaput

There are no military installations in the city of Tskhinvali. In fact, there are no military targets at all. It is an industrial center consisting of lumber mills, manufacturing plants and residential areas. It is also the home to 30,000 South Ossetians. When Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili ordered the city to be bombed by warplanes and shelled by heavy artillery last Thursday, he knew that he would be killing hundreds of civilians in their homes and neighborhoods. But he ordered the bombing anyway.

There was no “Battle of Tskhinvali”; that’s another fiction. A battle implies that there is an opposing force that is resisting or fighting back. That’s not the case here. The Georgian army entered the city unopposed; after all, how can unarmed civilians stop armed units. Most of the townspeople had already fled across the border into Russia or hid in their basements while the tanks and armored vehicles rumbled bye firing at anything that moved.

What took place in South Ossetia last Thursday, was not an invasion or a siege; it was a massacre. The people had no way to defend themselves against a fully-equiped modern army. It was a war crime.

In less than 24 hours, the Russian army was deployed to the war zone where it chased the Georgian army away without a fight. Journalist Michael Binyon put it like this, “The attack was short, sharp and deadly—enough to send the Georgians fleeing in humiliating panic.” Indeed, the Georgians left in such haste that many of their weapons were left behind. It was a complete rout; another black-eye for the US and Israeli advisers who trained the clatter of thugs they call the Georgian army. Soon vendors on the streets of Tskhinvali will be hawking weapons that were left behind with a mocking sign: “Georgia Army M-16; Never used, dropped once.”

By the time the army was driven out, the downtown area was in engulfed in flames and the bodies of those who had been killed by sniper-fire were strewn along the streets and sidewalks. Many of people who stayed behind were simply too old or infirm to leave. Instead, they huddled in their basements waiting for the shelling to stop. It was a bloodbath. The city’s only hospital was deliberately targeted and destroyed; another war crime. By day’s end, over 2,000 people were killed in an operation that was clearly engineered with the assistance of the Bush White House. Bush regards Saakashvilli as his main client in the region; they are friends. He is America’s cat’s paw in the Caucasus. Saakashvilli’s assignment is to try to get Putin to overreact militarily and demonstrate to European allies that Russia still poses a threat to their national security. Fortunately, many Europeans see through the ruse and know that the trouble originates in Washington.

For the most part, Americans are still in the dark about what really happened last weekend. There’s a great video circulating on the Internet by a Russian citizen that has been living in USA for the last 10 years. He sums up the role of the US media with great precision. He says, “The western media–especially CNN–is feeding you complete horseshit. Russia did not invade Georgia first.” The youtube can be seen here:

The truth about South Ossetia War, Georgia attack

air1180

The truth about South Ossetia War, Ge…“, posted with vodpod

The coverage of the western media has been abysmal. Nearly every article and TV news segment begins with accusations of Russian aggression concealing the fact that the Georgian Army bombarded and invaded the capital of South Ossetia one full day before the first Russian even tank crossed the border. By the time the Russians arrived, the city was already in a shambles and thousands were dead.

These facts are not in dispute by those who followed the developments as they took place. Now the media is revising the facts to manage public perceptions, just as they did with the fictional WMD in Iraq. Many people think that the media learned its lesson after they were exposed for using bogus information in the lead up to the war in Iraq. But that is not true. The corporate media–especially FOX News, CNN and PBS (the smug, liberal-sounding channel)—continue to operate like the propaganda arm of the Pentagon. Its disgraceful.

In a 2006 referendum, 99% of South Ossetians said they supported independence from Georgia. The voter turnout was 95% and the balloting was monitored by 34 international observers from the west. No one has challenged the results. The province has been under the protection of Russian and Georgian peacekeepers since 1992 and has been a de facto independent state ever since. If Putin applied the same standard as Bush did in Kosovo, he would unilaterally declare South Ossetia independent from Georgia and then thumb his nose at the UN. (Sauce for the goose, is sauce for the gander) But Putin and newly-elected Russian President Dmitry Medvedev have taken a conciliatory attitude towards the international community and tried to resolve the issue through diplomatic channels. So far, they have conducted themselves with restraint and avoided any confrontation.

Still, Russia’s operation in South Ossetia has ignited a firestorm in the US political establishment and Democrats and Republicans alike are demanding that Russia be “taught a lesson”. Condoleeza Rice flew to Tbilisi on Friday and ordered Russian combat troops to withdraw from Georgia immediately. Saakashvili topped off Rice’s comments by saying that the Russian troops were “cold-blooded killers” and “barbarians”. So much for reconciliation.

Saakashvili’s hyperbolic rhetoric was followed by a surprise announcement from Poland that they had approved Bush’s plans for deploying the Missile Defense Shield in Eastern Europe. The system is supposed to defend Europe from the possibility of attacks from so-called “rogue states” like Iran, but the Kremlin knows that it is intended to neutralize their nuclear arsenal. Political analyst William Engdahl explains the importance of the proposed system in his recent article, “Missile Defense: Washington & Poland just moved the World closer to War“:

“The signing now insures an escalation of tensions between Russia and NATO and a new Cold War arms race in full force. It is important for readers to understand…the ability of one of two opposing sides to put anti-missile missiles to within 90 miles of the territory of the other in even a primitive first-generation anti-missile missile array gives that side virtual victory in a nuclear balance of power and forces the other to consider unconditional surrender or to pre-emptively react by launching its nuclear strike before 2012.”

The new “shield” will be integrated into the larger US nuclear weapons system placing the world’s most lethal weapons just a few hundred miles from Russia’s capital. It is a clear threat to Russia’s national security and it must be opposed at all cost. It is no different than nuclear weapons in Cuba. The timing of the announcement is particularly troubling as it only adds to the tensions between the two superpowers.

President Medvedev made this statement after hearing of Poland’s decision: “This decision clearly demonstrates everything we have said recently. The deployment of new anti-missile forces in Europe is aimed at the Russian Federation.”

It was President Ronald Reagan, the darling of the neoconservatives, who decided to remove short-range nuclear weapons from the European theater. Now, ironically, it is his ideological heir, George W. Bush, who is on track to restart the Cold War by putting a high-tech nuclear system on Russia’s perimeter. The younger Bush has already broken his father’s commitment to Mikail Gorbachev to never expand NATO beyond Germany. Presently, Bush is pushing to gain NATO membership for two former-Soviet states; Ukraine and Georgia. If they are approved, then any future dispute with Russia will pit the United States and Europe against Moscow. It’s no wonder Putin is trying to derail the process.

The Bush administration has been planning for a confrontation with Russia for more than a year. In fact, Raw Story reported on operations that were conducted by the military on July 14, 2008 which were probably a dress rehearsal for the current conflict. According to Raw Story:

“US troops on Monday (July 14) began military exercises near the Russian border in ex-Soviet Ukraine and were poised to launch them in Georgia, amid tense relations between Moscow and Washington. A ceremony inaugurating the Sea Breeze-2008 NATO exercise was held off Ukraine’s Black Sea coast against anti-NATO protests and a hostile reaction from officials in Russia. Sea Breeze-2008…includes forces from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Britain, Canada, Denmark, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Latvia, Macedonia and Turkey…’The US-Georgia joint exercises will be held at the Vaziani military base’ less than 100 kilometers (60 miles) from the Russian border with a total of 1,650 servicemen taking part.”

So, it appears the Bush administration, working in conjunction with the Pentagon, did have contingency plans for dealing with a flare-up with Georgia. The real question is whether or not they planned to initiate those hostilities to advance their own regional agenda? No one knows for sure.

Now that Georgia’s American-trained army has been humiliated in front of the world, Bush is trying desperately to save face by demanding that Russia allow the US Air force to deliver humanitarian aid via C-17 military aircraft to the tens of thousands of Georgians who were displaced in the fighting. It is worth noting that, as yet, Bush has never delivered as much as a bag of rice to the 2 million Iraqi refugees living in Jordan and Syria due to his war in Iraq. Bush’s magnanimity is not only suspect, it also creates real problems for Putin who will have to decide whether the offer is sincere or just a ploy to open up the ports and airfields so that more weaponry and ordnance can be delivered. As Barry Grey suggests in his article “Bush Dispatches US Military forces to Georgia” the humanitarian operation could be a scam:

“This is a formula for an injection of US military and naval forces into Georgia of indeterminate scope and duration. It will certainly involve the presence of hundreds if not thousands of uniformed US military personnel on the ground, and a substantial number of warships in the region. The US is introducing this military force into a situation that remains highly unstable and combustible, raising the possibility of a direct military clash between the United States and Russia.”

Grey is right, but what choice does Putin have? His task is to avoid a military confrontation with the United States while demonstrating to his Europeon partners that their future lies with Russia not America. That’s the real goal. To achieve that, he needs to expose Bush as reckless, petulant, and incapable of being a responsible steward of the global system. Maybe Putin will have to back-down at some point and swallow his pride; it makes no difference. What matters, is the endgame; showing that Russia is strong and dependable and will provide its European allies with oil and natural gas in a businesslike manner. That’s the winning hand. Meanwhile, the United States will be forced to take a long-overdue look in the mirror and revisit its strategy for perennial war. Unfortunately, once the Atlantic Alliance is shattered; America’s lifeline to the world is kaput.

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

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This is a tale of US expansion not Russian aggression

Russia-Georgia conflict is over control of oil

Fox News cuts American child for thanking Russian troops + PR campaign + evidence of Georgian ‘genocide’

All the Propaganda That’s Fit to Print: The New York Times, Again, Tells It Like It Ain’t

Russia-Asia cooperation a nightmare for US hawks

“Gori in ruins”? See for yourself + Paul Craig Roberts on Russia Today + Georgia is a US Project

Inventing Your Own History As It Happens By John Steppling

Missile Defense: Washington & Poland just moved the World closer to War

Wag the Dog: How to Conceal Massive Economic Collapse

Georgia

Mosaic News – 8/15/08: World News from the Middle East

Dandelion Salad

Warning

.

This video may contain images depicting the reality and horror of war/violence and should only be viewed by a mature audience.

linktv

Mosaic needs your help! Donate here: http://linktv.org/contribute
“Ahmadinejad Looks for Energy Deals in Turkey,” Al Jazeera TV, Qatar
“Olmert’s Proposal Rejected,” Al Arabiya TV, UAE
“Israeli Soldiers Cleared of Killing Journalist,” IBA TV, Israel
“There Will Be More Assassinations,” Dubai TV, UAE
“Israeli Settlers Increase by 4% in the West Bank in 2007,” Al Aqsa, Gaza
“Israeli Companies Operate in Iraq,” New TV, Lebanon
“Independence Day in Pakistan,” Al-Alam TV, Iran
“More than 50 Taliban Fighters Killed,” Al Jazeera English, Qatar
“What Did Bush Really See in Putin’s Eyes?,” Link TV, USA
Produced for Link TV by Jamal Dajani.

This is a tale of US expansion not Russian aggression

Dandelion Salad

Sent to me by Jason Miller from Thomas Paine’s Corner. Thanks, Jason.

By Seumas Milne
The Guardian, Thursday August 14 2008

“War in the Caucasus is as much the product of an American imperial drive as local conflicts. It’s likely to be a taste of things to come…”

The outcome of six grim days of bloodshed in the Caucasus has triggered an outpouring of the most nauseating hypocrisy from western politicians and their captive media. As talking heads thundered against Russian imperialism and brutal disproportionality, US vice-president Dick Cheney, faithfully echoed by Gordon Brown and David Miliband, declared that “Russian aggression must not go unanswered”. George Bush denounced Russia for having “invaded a sovereign neighbouring state” and threatening “a democratic government”. Such an action, he insisted, “is unacceptable in the 21st century”.

Could these by any chance be the leaders of the same governments that in 2003 invaded and occupied – along with Georgia, as luck would have it – the sovereign state of Iraq on a false pretext at the cost of hundreds of thousands of lives? Or even the two governments that blocked a ceasefire in the summer of 2006 as Israel pulverised Lebanon’s infrastructure and killed more than a thousand civilians in retaliation for the capture or killing of five soldiers?

You’d be hard put to recall after all the fury over Russian aggression that it was actually Georgia that began the war last Thursday with an all-out attack on South Ossetia to “restore constitutional order” – in other words, rule over an area it has never controlled since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Nor, amid the outrage at Russian bombardments, have there been much more than the briefest references to the atrocities committed by Georgian forces against citizens it claims as its own in South Ossetia’s capital Tskhinvali. Several hundred civilians were killed there by Georgian troops last week, along with Russian soldiers operating under a 1990s peace agreement: “I saw a Georgian soldier throw a grenade into a basement full of women and children,” one Tskhinvali resident, Saramat Tskhovredov, told reporters on Tuesday.

» This is a tale of US expansion not Russian aggression.

see

Russia-Georgia conflict is over control of oil

Fox News cuts American child for thanking Russian troops + PR campaign + evidence of Georgian ‘genocide’

All the Propaganda That’s Fit to Print: The New York Times, Again, Tells It Like It Ain’t

Russia-Asia cooperation a nightmare for US hawks

“Gori in ruins”? See for yourself + Paul Craig Roberts on Russia Today + Georgia is a US Project

Inventing Your Own History As It Happens By John Steppling

Wag the Dog: How to Conceal Massive Economic Collapse

Georgia

Russia-Georgia conflict is over control of oil

Dandelion Salad

Democracy Now!

Aug 15, 2008

Russia-Georgia Conflict Fueled by Rush to Control Caspian Energy Resources

Human Rights Watch has accused both Russian and Georgian forces of killing and injuring civilians through indiscriminate attacks over the past week of fighting. Professor and author Michael Klare joins us to talk about how the Russian-Georgian conflict is largely an energy war over who has access to the vast oil and natural gas reserves in the Caspian region.

Real Video Stream

Real Audio Stream

MP3 Download

transcript

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IWantDemocracyNow

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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Fox News cuts American child for thanking Russian troops + PR campaign + evidence of Georgian ‘genocide’

All the Propaganda That’s Fit to Print: The New York Times, Again, Tells It Like It Ain’t

Russia-Asia cooperation a nightmare for US hawks

“Gori in ruins”? See for yourself + Paul Craig Roberts on Russia Today + Georgia is a US Project

Inventing Your Own History As It Happens By John Steppling

Wag the Dog: How to Conceal Massive Economic Collapse

Georgia

Naomi Klein on China’s rising police state

Dandelion Salad

Democracy Now!
Aug 15, 2008

Naomi Klein and Christian Parenti on How Beijing Olympics Highlight Globalization of Police State, Inequality

The equipment and integrated security systems used to detain Olympic protesters will remain long after the Olympics, to be used, many fear, on China’s own population. And some of the biggest beneficiaries of this surveillance boom are US hedge funds and corporations, including Cisco, General Electric and Google. We speak to journalists Naomi Klein and Christian Parenti, both of whom have recently reported from China.

Real Video Stream

Real Audio Stream

MP3 Download

transcript

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After Georgia conflict – Missile agreement with Poland intensifies danger of US-Russian clash

Dandelion Salad

By Patrick Martin
http://www.wsws.org
16 August 2008

The agreement between the United States and the right-wing government of Poland to base a US anti-missile system in that country is the first major response of American imperialism to the Russian intervention in Georgia.

The Bush administration has pressed Poland and the Czech Republic to accept US anti-missile systems and radar installations on the pretext that they are being deployed to prevent an attack on Europe by Iran, which possesses neither the required ballistic missile warheads nor nuclear weapons. Despite vehement protests from Moscow, US officials have denied that the anti-missile systems represent a threat to Russia.

However, the circumstances in which the agreement with Poland was signed make clear that it is directed against Moscow. Long stalled by wrangling between Warsaw and Washington over Polish demands for high-tech anti-aircraft systems as the price for basing the missiles, the pact was wrapped up within days of the appearance of Polish President Lech Kaczynski alongside Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili at an anti-Russian rally in Tbilisi.

After Georgia conflict Missile agreement with Poland intensifies danger of US-Russian clash.

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

see

Russia-Asia cooperation a nightmare for US hawks

Missile Defense: Washington & Poland just moved the World closer to War

Inventing Your Own History As It Happens By John Steppling

Will American Insouciance Destroy the World? By Paul Craig Roberts

Background on Georgia by Bruce Gagnon

Georgia

Fox News cuts American child for thanking Russian troops + PR campaign + evidence of Georgian ‘genocide’

Dandelion Salad

Warning

.

These videos may contain images depicting the reality and horror of war/violence and should only be viewed by a mature audience.

RussiaToday

A 12-year-old American girl visiting relatives during the conflict in South Ossetia has thanked Russian soldiers for saving her from the Georgian attack. However, America’s Fox News attempted to cut her and her aunt off air.

Kremlin failed by keeping western journalists away

The Russian government was too slow to react to the PR campaign launched by Tbilisi in the world’s media, believes Seamus Milne of Britain’s Guardian newspaper.

Ossetians collect evidence of Georgian ‘genocide’

South Ossetian residents and local journalists have launched their own investigation into claims of genocide perpetrated by Georgian soldiers. They accuse Georgians of attempting to destroy Ossetian graves and memorials to locals killed in earlier conflicts.

Rescuers restore war-hit settlements in South Ossetia

While the South Ossetian capital of Tskhinvali is attempting to return to some kind of normality, there are other locations that have also suffered from the Georgian attack. A number of South Ossetian villages were battered by severe strikes — with some of them turning into ghost towns.

see

All the Propaganda That’s Fit to Print: The New York Times, Again, Tells It Like It Ain’t

Russia-Asia cooperation a nightmare for US hawks

“Gori in ruins”? See for yourself + Paul Craig Roberts on Russia Today + Georgia is a US Project

Inventing Your Own History As It Happens By John Steppling

Wag the Dog: How to Conceal Massive Economic Collapse

Georgia

Was 9/11 an Inside Job? by Mark H. Gaffney

Dandelion Salad

by Mark H. Gaffney
08/15/08 “ICH

The following is an excerpt from Mark H. Gaffney’s forthcoming book, THE 911 MYSTERY PLANE AND THE VANISHING OF AMERICA, to be released in September 2008.

Regrettably, there is considerable evidence that elements of the Bush administration were complicit in the 9/11 attack, and may even have helped stage it. Let us now examine some of what I regard as the most compelling evidence. However, the following discussion makes no claim to be comprehensive.

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Kucinich: Power through Peace (video links; 07.17.08)

Dandelion Salad

by Maya Schenwar
T r u t h o u t
July. 17, 2008

Truthout Kucinich Interview Part 1

t r u t h o u t | Truthout Kucinich Interview Part 1.

Truthout Kucinich Interview Part 2

t r u t h o u t | Truthout Kucinich Interview Part 2.

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Kucinich Applauds Investigation of Claims by Suskind

Kucinich Applauds Investigation of Claims by Suskind

Dandelion Salad

by Rep. Dennis Kucinich
Washington, Aug 13, 2008

Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) applauded Monday’s announcement by Representative John Conyers, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, that the Committee will investigate allegations of White House prewar intelligence manipulation.  The announcement followed a letter sent by Congressman Kucinich on Friday, August 8, requesting a hearing.

“I asked Chairman Conyers to investigate these claims because, if true, the Administration fabricated evidence and used it to lead the country into an unprovoked war,” said Kucinich.

Allegations that Bush Administration officials ordered the fabrication of a document they used to assert a connection between Saddam Hussein and Al-Qaeda were reported by Ron Suskind in his new book, “The Way of the World: A Story of Truth and Hope in the Age of Extremism.”

The Letter Follows:

August 8, 2008

The Honorable John Conyers, Jr.
House Committee on the Judiciary
2138 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515-0001

Dear Chairman Conyers:

A number of major news outlets recently reported new allegations that the White House manipulated intelligence used to justify the war in Iraq.[i] If true, this would constitute a grave misuse of power and merit investigation by your Committee.

Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Ron Suskind has alleged in his book, “The Way of the World” that the White House ordered the CIA to create a letter from the head of Iraqi intelligence service, Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti, to Saddam Hussein that alleged a link between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. The letter was reportedly backdated to July 1, 2001. Mr. Suskind also alleges that the White House moved Mr. Habbush to Jordan and gave him $5 million, which could be construed as “hush money.”[ii] Finally, Mr. Suskind writes that the White House “ignored the Iraq intelligence chiefs accurate disclosure that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq – intelligence they received in plenty of time to stop an invasion.”[iii]

These are serious allegations from a reputable source that, if confirmed, would create further evidence that the White House manipulated pre-war intelligence in order to lead the country into war. Congress must investigate these allegations. I urge you to take the lead on such an investigation.

Sincerely,
Dennis Kucinich
Member of Congress

[i] Warrick, Joby, “White House Denies Author’s Accusations of Document Forgery,” Washington Post, August 6,

2008; Blackledge, Brett 1., “CIA officials deny fake Iraq-al-Qaida link letter,” Associated Press, August 5, 2008

[ii] Allen, Mike, “Book Says White House ordered forgery,” Politico, August 5, 2008

[iii] Allen, Mike, “Book Says White House ordered forgery,” Politico, August 5, 2008

FAIR USE NOTICE: This blog may contain copyrighted material. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

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Ron Suskind: Bush Admin forging documents that led to war (Part 2)

Ron Suskind: Bush Admin forging documents that led to war (Part 1)

James McMurtry: We Can’t Make It Here Anymore

Dandelion Salad

An oldie but a goodie. Posted on my old blog on 08/23/2006.  I wonder if those claiming to want freedom understand that the workers are the ones that being used by the corporations?  That means you.  Please see my short post: Libertarians and Socialists as Workers Must Unite by Lo

“Will work for food. Will die for oil.”

This music video touches on America’s economic corporate control, struggles of workers, conditions of veterans, war in Iraq, and the prison industrial complex.

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