On the show this week, Chris Hedges talks to Siddharth Varadarajan, editor of The Wire, about the rise of right-wing populism in India and its disturbing parallels to the right-wing rise of populism in the United States.
“As the environmental crisis worsens, thinking of war as a tool with which to address it, treating refugees as akin to military enemies, threatens us with the ultimate vicious cycle. Declaring that climate change causes wars misses the reality that we human beings cause war, and that unless we learn to address crises nonviolently we will only make them worse.” — Martin Sheen
Every day the news gets worse. Millions of people are displaced by record-breaking heatwaves and droughts, violent mega-storms and flash floods. Unprecedented wildfires burn out of control, scorching massive tracts of forest and brush, and plunging nearby urban metropolises into surreal scenes of mid-afternoon darkness. Meanwhile, scientists solemnly inform us that marine life could be wiped out by mid-century, as the oceans continue to be gradually transformed from vibrant areas of rich biodiversity into the plastic-filled graveyards of industrial civilization. Try as we might… the consequences of our consequence-free lifestyles are becoming harder and harder to ignore.
Chris Hedges talks to author Amitav Ghosh about the natural world and sacred forces that sustain life and the conflict when treated by the human species as an inert commodity to exploit. In his novel Gun Island, Ghosh explores how these ecosystems have turned with a vengeance on the hubris and collective lunacy of modern industrialized society.
Norman Finkelstein received his PhD from the Princeton University Politics Department in 1988. He is the author of ten books that have been translated into 50 foreign editions, including The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the exploitation of Jewish suffering and, most recently, Gaza: An inquest into its martyrdom. His books include What Gandhi Says, About Nonviolence, Resistance and Courage.
The Israeli military brutally crushed a protest on the Gaza border led by tens of thousands of Palestinians, killing 17 and injuring 1,400. Journalist Max Blumenthal speaks of Israel’s suffocating blockade of the strip and the biased media reporting on the “Great Return March.”
Tadesse is a 28-year-old Ethiopian from the capital, Addis Ababa. Like thousands of others he took part in demonstrations over the last three years, and together with family members, refused to pledge support for the Ethiopian government. Such displays of political dissent led to him being repeatedly imprisoned, tortured and cruelly mistreated. Now safe in Europe, he is in physical pain and psychological anguish as a result of the barbaric way he was treated in prison.
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.
Under relentless popular pressure the Ethiopian Prime-Minister, Hailemariam Desalegn, has been forced to resign, other members of the government are expected to follow. In his resignation speech he acknowledged that, ”unrest and a political crisis have led to the loss of lives and displacement of many,” Reuters reports. ‘Loss of lives’ of innocent Ethiopians at the hands of TPLF security personnel to be clear. “I see my resignation as vital in the bid to carry out reforms that would lead to sustainable peace and democracy.”
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.