19 Jun

Truth Out Today, June 19, 2011

NATO Says It Mistakenly Hit Libyan Rebels Again
David D. Kirkpatrick, The New York Times News Service: ” NATO acknowledged Saturday that its aircraft had mistakenly hit a column of rebel military vehicles last week near the Libyan oil port of Brega, and early Sunday morning the Qaddafi government showed reporters a destroyed cinder-block house that neighbors and the government said was hit by an errant NATO airstrike in the capital.”
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Gaza and American “Security”
Ray McGovern, Consortium News: “Despite opposition – and even warnings – from the U.S. government, a group of Americans will join a small flotilla of boats challenging Israel’s blockade of the 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza. Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern explains why he is joining this protest… ‘”You know you can get killed, don’t you?” – if the U.S. government continues to enable Israel in keeping a million and a half Gazans in a densely populated open-air prison with few prospects for a normal life.'”
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What Exactly Is the War Powers Act and Is Obama Really Violating It?
Marian Wang, ProPublica: “President Obama is facing a swell of bipartisan criticism for continuing military engagement in Libya without congressional approval. Even supporters of the Libya intervention have complained that the administration is flouting the law. So, is it? Well, the president is certainly sidestepping the controversial law known as the War Powers Act, but in doing so he’s following a well-worn path.”
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GMOs and Peru: The Debate Comes to a Head
Carrie Burggraf, Council on Hemespheric Affairs: “On one side of the debate is the ability of GMOs to feed the world’s increasingly large and diverse population and to allow developing countries to economically advance via transgenic crops. The other side of the dispute focuses on the unknown health and environmental risks posed by GMOs, along with potential monopolistic practices… In Peru, the debate over the introduction of GMOs into the country has been very public, involving a plethora of participants such as scientists, chefs, farmers, restaurant owners, politicians, and far-ranging members of civil society.”
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The $113 Billion Hole: Ten Things America Gave Up This Year to Pay for the War in Afghanistan
Zaid Jilani, ThinkProgress: “The war is affecting more than just Western soldiers and their families and Afghan citizens. It has become a costly drain on our nation’s treasury; the money that is being spent on the war represents resources that are being drained away from important domestic priorities in a nation with sky-high unemployment and crumbling infrastructure. Using data from the National Priorities Project, ThinkProgress calculated ten investments America could’ve afforded if it didn’t spend $113 billion – the allotment made in Fiscal Year 2011 – on the war in Afghanistan.”
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Police Officer Who Killed Oscar Grant Free, but Some Protesters Could Still Face Jail Time
Rebecca Bowe, San Francisco Bay Guardian: ” Johannes Mehserle, the former BART police officer who shot and killed Oscar Grant while he was lying face down on the Fruitvale station train platform on New Year’s Day 2009, was released from a Los Angeles jail June 13 after serving a total of 365 days for his involuntary manslaughter conviction… The same date of his release, the National Lawyers Guild filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of 150 protesters who were mass-arrested during the Nov. 5, 2010 demonstration in Oakland in the wake of Mehersle’s sentencing.”
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The True Crime of the Rosenberg Execution
Robert Wilbur, Truthout: “So, while the Rosenbergs probably did break a law that was passed amid the hysteria of an earlier world war by passing non-atomic intelligence on to the Russians… The Rosenberg’s crime was probably to break the 1917 Espionage Act; by far the greater crime was to kill husband and wife on June 19, 58 years ago. The execution of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg is the true crime of the century – an abomination that casts an ineradicable black mark on the American criminal justice system and on the presidency of Dwight D. Eisenhower, whose own crime was a failure to grant mercy.”
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Whatever Happened to Stability Analysis?
Alejandro Nadal, TripleCrisis: “Once upon a time, stability of the general equilibrium was considered an important element in the education of students in economics… This crucial aspect of microeconomics is seldom covered adequately (if at all) in recent textbooks and university programs, whether at the undergraduate or post-graduate levels. Most students spend years learning how individual agents maximize, or exploring cases of oligopoly, or playing around with game theory, but when it comes to stability, their teachers skirt the main issues.”
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Evaluating the Drug War, By the Numbers
Akiba Solomon and Stokely Baksh, Colorlines: “At the estimated cost of $1 trillion, the War on Drugs has triggered the mass incarceration, mostly of black and brown people through harsh penalties for non-violent drug violations like simple possession… In addition, people with drug convictions (and their families) have been evicted from public housing, deemed ineligible for food stamps and college financial aid, and denied employment. This failed war has destroyed mothers, fathers, children, grandparents – whole communities. One thing it hasn’t done: End the use and sale of drugs.”
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EU: Industry Lobbies Set Up Spin on Cash-for-Amendments Scandal
Olivier Hoedeman, Brussels Sunshine: “After the intense debate and media attention in the first weeks after the European Parliament’s cash-for-amendments scandalbroke, it has become very quiet in the last weeks. Discussions about transparency and ethics reforms in the wake of the scandal take place in secrecy in a working group of ten MEPs, led by Parliament President Buzek, in weekly meetings behind closed doors. There are apparently no plans for public hearings or even announcements before the recommendations are completed in the end of June. It’s questionable whether this is the right approach.”
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Obama Impersonator at GOP Conference Booted for Racist Jokes
Read the Article at Politico

Morocco’s King Bows to Pressure and Allows Reform
Read the Article at the Guardian UK

Learning the Fitzwalkerstan Way: Wisconsin’s Walker Pushes Privatization of Education
Read the Article at The Nation

Blaze Erupts at Former NJ Chemical Plant Weeks After EPA Completed $1M Cleanup; No Injuries
Read the Article at Daily Journal

Perry’s Texas has Highest Percentage of Minimum Wage Jobs in the Nation
Read the Article at ThinkProgress

Gates Retires From Pentagon, Warns America Is Losing Its Grip
Read the Article at Newsweek

Report: US Orders News Blackout Over Crippled Nebraska Nuclear Plant
Read the Article at The Nation Pakistan

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