Sunday, April 17, 2016

Articles from the Alternative Media ...

with the exception of the last link.

From AlMonitor
Turkey denies claims it fired on fleeing Syrians

Turkey on Sunday denied claims that its military opened fire on Syrian refugees fleeing clashes between Islamic State group jihadists and rebels in northern Syria.
Human Rights Watch on Friday accused Turkish border guards of shooting at the refugees as they approached the border in Syria's Aleppo province....

From TelSur
Rosario Dawson Arrested,
 Sanders Tax Returns Show Modest Income
Cops cuffed Dawson during the Democracy Spring protests, and a report shows that Clinton made more in hours than Sanders in an entire year.

Actress and pro-Bernie Sanders activist Rosario Dawson has been arrested on Friday night, pop culture website TMZ reports.

Dawson was among about a dozen people arrested at the Democracy Spring rally going on in Washington, D.C.....

From Al Monitor
Why Israel is staying silent on Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict

Azerbaijan and Israel are strategic allies. I had the privilege of laying the foundations for that alliance in 1993, shortly after Azerbaijan obtained independence for the second time. The first time was in 1918, when the short-lived Azerbaijan Democratic Republic became the first secular Muslim republic in history.

At the beginning of April, fierce fighting erupted between the Armenian and Azerbaijani armies in the contested territory of Nagorno-Karabakh. A tenuous cease-fire has since been declared. As in any region entangled in a complex web of international interests, the international community is expected to play a major role in the short- and long-term future of this strip of land. Now, however, when Azerbaijan needs all the diplomatic help it can muster, Israel is not rushing to its aid.

The alliance between the two countries has a firm basis in geopolitical realpolitik. Azerbaijan takes special care to maintain its status as a secular state, while its two large neighbors, Turkey and Iran, are best characterized as Islamist regimes with imperial ambitions. Iran especially has a hard time coming to terms with the fact that a country on its border, particularly one with a majority Shiite population, maintains a modern Western, secular lifestyle. Azerbaijan also takes care to uphold a cautious policy of neutrality toward the two regional powerbrokers, Turkey and Russia, even while Ankara and Moscow are engaged in a heated diplomatic, near military, conflict....

Robert Parry at ConsortiumNews
Yes, Hillary Clinton Is a Neocon

If there were any doubts that Hillary Clinton favors a neoconservative foreign policy, her performance at Thursday’s debate should have laid them to rest. In every meaningful sense, she is a neocon and – if she becomes President – Americans should expect more global tensions and conflicts in pursuit of the neocons’ signature goal of “regime change” in countries that get in their way.

Beyond sharing this neocon “regime change” obsession, former Secretary of State Clinton also talks like a neocon. One of their trademark skills is to use propaganda or “perception management” to demonize their targets and to romanticize their allies, what is called “gluing white hats” on their side and “gluing black hats” on the other....

Ari Berman at TheNation
Clinton and Sanders Sue Arizona
 Over 5-Hour Lines in the March Primary
Arizona’s election problems showed the disastrous consequences of gutting the Voting Rights Act.

Alejandra Ruiz went to vote on her lunch break in downtown Phoenix during Arizona’s March 22 primary. A registered Democrat of Mexican-American origin, Ruiz had recently moved to Maricopa County. Because downtown Phoenix had only one polling place for thousands of residents and the line was too long, she decided to vote at a different polling place after work. But things were even worse when she arrived at the West Thomas Baptist Church polling place at 6:30, located in a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood on the city’s west side.

Ruiz waited nearly six hours to vote, finally casting her ballot at 12:07 am, more than five hours after the polls closed. When she left there were still at least 100 people still waiting in line to vote. ...

Prof Tim Anderson at GlobalResearch
How America backed the ISIS Takeover and Destruction of Palmyra

As explosions from detonated mines continued in the background a Syrian general confirmed in some detail an ugly truth: Washington and its close allies Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Israel backed the ISIS takeover and destruction of Palmyra.

Most of the weapons ISIS used were from the US , with some ammunition from Israel . ISIS had US Hummers, spinning explosive projectiles and military rations from the US , Turkey and Saudi Arabia .

That should not have been a surprise. US officials admitted in 2014 that their allies Turkey , the Saudis and Qatar were backing every single armed group in Syria , in an attempt to overthrow the Syrian Government led by President Bashar al Assad.

Our group of 30 journalists visited liberated Palmyra on 14 April, 18 days after the Syrian Army freed the historic city from a ten month reign of terror. Syrian bulldozers were cleaning debris while Russian sappers continued exploding mines. Three thousand had been cleared and another 30 exploded in the two hours we were there.

Eric Draitser at StopImperialism
BRICS Under Attack: The Empire’s Destabilizing Hand Reaches Into South Africa

Major protests have gripped South Africa in recent months as political forces have emerged to give voice to a growing discontent with the government and ruling party. Beneath the surface of these demonstrations organized around legitimate grievances, however, there’s an undercurrent of political manipulation.

South Africa and its ruling African National Congress (ANC) party have been targeted for destabilization due to the country’s burgeoning relationship with China and other non-Western nations, most obviously typified by South Africa’s inclusion in BRICS, the association of the five major emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

Last year, for example, China surpassed the United States and European Union as South Africa’s largest trade partner, and the ANC has been hard at work promoting further trade cooperation. Answering questions in the National Assembly, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa explained: “We trade more effectively with China because the relationship is based on win-win; mutual benefit that they can get out of the relationship and that we can get out the relationship.”....

Felicity Arbuthnot at Information ClearingHouse
....HRW obtained a list of
 one hundred and forty people, including young children, said to have died in the last few months “from lack of food and medicine.” The names have been withheld for fear that ISIS, which forbids the population making contact outside the city “would punish the relatives of the dead.”

Residents are reported to be eating bread made from flour from ground date stones and soup made from grass. Food still available is sold at staggering prices. “A 50-kilogram sack of flour goes for US$750, and a bag of sugar for $500.” In Baghdad, just seventy kilometres away: “ the same amount of flour costs $15 and of sugar $40 … each day starving children arrive at the local hospital … most foodstuffs are no longer available at any price … the hospital has run out of baby food.”....

Eric Fair at WashingtonPost in 2007  author of  Consequence A Memoir 
An Iraq Interrogator's Nightmare

 A man with no face stares at me from the corner of a room. He pleads for help, but I'm afraid to move. He begins to cry. It is a pitiful sound, and it sickens me. He screams, but as I awaken, I realize the screams are mine.

That dream, along with a host of other nightmares, has plagued me since my return from Iraq in the summer of 2004. Though the man in this particular nightmare has no face, I know who he is. I assisted in his interrogation at a detention facility in Fallujah. I was one of two civilian interrogators assigned to the division interrogation facility (DIF) of the 82nd Airborne Division. The man, whose name I've long since forgotten, was a suspected associate of Khamis Sirhan al-Muhammad, the Baath Party leader in Anbar province who had been captured two months earlier.

The lead interrogator at the DIF had given me specific instructions: I was to deprive the detainee of sleep during my 12-hour shift by opening his cell every hour, forcing him to stand in a corner and stripping him of his clothes. Three years later the tables have turned. It is rare that I sleep through the night without a visit from this man. His memory harasses me as I once harassed him.......

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