The Empire Update for Nov. 23 covering the Grand Finale of Trump’s promise to end the Afghanistan War; what’s really behind the Somalia troop withdrawal; US-backed monarchy sparks new potential war in Africa; State Department takes new action for Israel against BDS movement; and potential for Trump to start war with Iran on his way out.
October 15, 2020, was Thomas Sankara’s 33rd death anniversary. On this day, he was murdered by imperialist forces at the tender age of 37. A Pan-Africanist, internationalist and Marxist, he was committed to the total liberation of the oppressed masses from the clutches of imperialism. Instead of bourgeoisie nationalism, Sankara believed in radical nationalism: a combination of anti-imperialist courage and unabashed humanism that pushes for revolution instead of neo-colonial settlement. Thus, he belonged to a pantheon of African revolutionaries like Amilcar Cabral, Samora Machel and Patrice Lumumba who understood the necessity of adopting socialism for the fundamental transformation of their respective societies. Looking at the short life of Sankara, one can’t help but be moved by the way in which he emerged through the anguish and aspirations of millions of Burkinabe civilians and commanded a radical project of socialist transformation.
A black American writer, J. Saunders Redding, describes the arrival of a ship in North America in the year 1619:
Sails furled, flag drooping at her rounded stern, she rode the tide in from the sea. She was a strange ship, indeed, by all accounts, a frightening ship, a ship of mystery. Whether she was trader, privateer, or man-of-war no one knows. Through her bulwarks black-mouthed cannon yawned. The flag she flew was Dutch; her crew a motley. Her port of call, an English settlement, Jamestown, in the colony of Virginia. She came, she traded, and shortly afterwards was gone. Probably no ship in modern history has carried a more portentous freight. Her cargo? Twenty slaves.
David Sheen is an independent journalist and filmmaker born in Canada, now reporting from Israel/Palestine. His work focuses primarily on racial tensions and religious extremism. In 2017, Sheen was named a Front Line Defenders Human Rights Defender, the only person in Israel to receive that honor in a decade.
President of the Republic of Namibia, Dr. Hage Geingob, discusses how his country, which achieved independence from neighboring apartheid South Africa in 1990, is now fighting for justice and economic emancipation from global banks, corporations and foreign governments seeking to extract the developing country’s natural resources.
This time of year Mediterranean beaches are the destinations of choice for many European holidaymakers; it’s also the beginning of the busiest time of year for the people smugglers based in Libya and elsewhere along the North African coast. July to October is their peak season — during this time in 2016 around 103,000 refugees were crammed into unsafe boats, often in the dead of night, and cast off into the Mediterranean Sea.
This talk was part of symposium organized by Local Futures (formerly ISEC) at Cooper Union in New York City, November 8, 2014. For more information about Local Futures’ work or to listen to other talks from the symposium, go to localfutures.org.
Front blew in Sunday, a dry norther, and once again I’m allergy sick. Physically debilitated and mentally impaired too. I know better than to operate power equipment on allergy days, and I try to minimize my driving, and mostly I try and do things indoors to stay indoors and breathe the HVAC filtered air with no allergens in it. Most of the real work I need to do is outdoors and power tools and driving and allergies mean that it all gets postponed, which irritates me greatly on top of the allergy pains and aches. Continue reading →
Hidden and isolated from the world the armed conflict raging in the Ogaden region of Ethiopia goes unnoticed. The killing and raping of innocent civilians at the hands of the military and their paramilitary partners in crime the Liyu police, the false arrests, torture and imprisonment remain largely hidden and unreported. The international media, human rights groups and most aid organisations (including the International Red Cross) have been banned from the region by the ruling Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) since 2007.
France is emerging as the new partner-in-crime in support of America’s imperialist machinations across the globe.
Up until recently, that thuggish role was filled by British in what was euphemistically referred to as the “special Anglo-American relation”. Now the French are taking over from the British as the “oldest ally.”