The Evening Blues - 5-28-24


The day's news roundup + tonight's musical feature: Gil Scott-Heron

Hey! Good Evening!

This evening's music features blues poet Gil Scott-Heron. Enjoy!

Gil Scott-Heron - The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

Jewish Zionists are like “Excuse me, it’s actually against my religion for you to oppose genocide. You need to stop religiously persecuting me with peace activism.”

-- Caitlin Johnstone

News and Opinion

Meanwhile, We’re Still WAY Too Close To Nuclear Armageddon

While the antiwar zeitgeist has been quite understandably focused on the genocide in Gaza, over the past few weeks we’ve been seeing some very disturbing reports about empire managers ramping up nuclear brinkmanship escalations in Ukraine that are worth going over.

Antiwar’s Dave DeCamp has been doing a great job covering these developments, as usual. Here are a few recent stories from which deserve some attention today.

In an article titled “Blinken Pushing To Let Ukraine Hit Russian Territory With US Weapons,” DeCamp goes over a New York Times report about a “vigorous debate” within the Biden administration over whether to let Ukraine use US-supplied war machinery to attack targets in the Russian Federation itself. This would risk direct hot war between Russia and NATO, as Moscow already made explicitly clear recently with regard to similar developments in the UK.

“Moscow recently warned the UK that if Ukraine used British weapons on Russian territory, Russian forces would target UK military sites in Ukraine ‘and beyond’,” DeCamp writes. “The warning came after British Foreign Secretary David Cameron said Ukraine had the ‘right’ to use British arms in attacks on Russia.”

Obviously Ukraine has the “right” to attack Russia since Russia is attacking Ukraine; nobody disputes this. What is of course disputed is that it is wise or moral to risk the life of every terrestrial organism by tempting hot warfare between Russia and NATO over who controls Kharkiv.

In “Speaker Johnson Thinks Ukraine Should Use US Weapons on Russian Territory,” DeCamp reports on a letter sent by a bipartisan group of House representatives urging the president to lift any restrictions on the Ukrainians using US-supplied weapons to strike Russian territory “in the way they see fit.” Which means pressure is mounting both within the White House and on Capitol Hill to escalate nuclear tensions in this way.

In “Estonia Says NATO Countries Shouldn’t Be Afraid of Sending Troops to Ukraine for Training,” we learn of Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas’ casual support for openly sending large numbers of NATO forces into Ukraine for training purposes. Small, unofficial special operations forces from NATO powers have long been active in Ukraine, but what the Estonian PM is advocating would be a significant escalation from there. DeCamp notes that “Estonia, Lithuania, and France have all expressed interest in deploying troops” in Ukraine.

All this insanely hawkish rhetoric is already drawing a response from Moscow. In “Russia Begins Nuclear Weapons Drills Near Ukrainian Border,” The Libertarian Institute’s Kyle Anzalone reports on new war games which were announced by the Russian government “in response to Western leaders suggesting NATO troops could enter Ukraine.”

There was a lull in nuclear brinkmanship between NATO and Russia as the uncertainties of the Ukraine war and the influence the hawks would have over it got clearer, and things reached a cruel and bloody semblance of stability. But as Ukraine loses ground and runs out of manpower we’re starting to see some frantic flailings throughout the western empire on a front where cool heads are of existential importance to the survival of our species. 

It would feel so unbelievably idiotic if we woke up to learn that nuclear war has begun after a series of reckless escalations and unpredictable developments led to a rapid sequence of events from which there could be no return. But that’s not an unreasonable fear at this point in history, and we are moving much, much too close to that ledge.

Alastair Crooke: Are US and Russia Eyeball To Eyeball?

NATO's war with Russia w/ Dmitry Orlov

Pick a fascist, any fascist ...

Trump tells donors he will crush pro-Palestinian protests if re-elected

Donald Trump has told a group of wealthy donors that he will crush pro-Palestinian protests on university campuses if he is returned to the White House. The former president and presumptive Republican nominee called the demonstrations against Israel’s war in Gaza part of a “radical revolution” and promised the predominantly Jewish donors that he would set the movement back 25 or 30 years if they helped him beat Joe Biden in November’s presidential election. ...

Trump also said his administration would expel any foreign students found to be taking part in the protests, which have recently taken the form of tented encampments in colleges across the US.

Addressing the meeting in New York on 14 May, Trump heard one donor complain that many of the students and faculty academics taking part in the protests could, in future, hold positions of power in the US.

He praised New York police for clearing the encampments at Columbia University and said the approach should be emulated by other cities, adding: “It has to be stopped now.”

In further remarks to the donors, Trump performed an apparent U-turn on Israel’s offensive in Gaza after months of equivocating by saying that he supports the country’s right to continue its “war on terror”. He has previously said Israel is “losing the PR war” with its actions in Gaza. ... Speaking to the mass-circulation Israel Hayom newspaper in March, Trump said: “You have to finish up your war … You gotta get it done.” He has also said Israel should “get back to peace and stop killing people”.

UN’s top court orders Israel to immediately halt Rafah offensive

The president of the international court of justice, Nawaf Salam, said the humanitarian situation in Rafah had deteriorated further and was now classified as “disastrous”, meaning the ICJ’s previously issued provisional measures were insufficient.

He said the court had voted by a majority of 13 votes to two that “Israel shall, in conformity with its obligations under the convention on the prevention and punishment of the crime of genocide, and in view of the worsening conditions of life faced by civilians in Rafah governorate … immediately halt its military offensive and any other action in the Rafah governorate which may inflict on the Palestinian group in Gaza conditions of life that would bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part”.

The order by the ICJ is not enforceable, and Israeli ministers indicated that they would not comply with it.

Israeli forces stepped up military strikes on Gaza, bombing targets in Rafah, even as the ICJ delivered its decision, residents and medics said. ...

The ruling will increase pressure on the UK and the US, which criticised the ICC warrants request, to bring their influence to bear on Israel. However, after speaking on the phone with the US secretary of state, Antony Blinken, Israel’s war cabinet minister, Benny Gantz, a political rival of Netanyahu, said Israel was “obligated to continue fighting to return its hostages and ensure the safety of its citizens, at any time and place – including in Rafah. We will continue to act according to international law in Rafah and wherever we operate, and make an effort to avoid harming the civilian population. Not because of The Hague tribunal, but first of all because of who we are.”

After Latest Israeli Attack on Rafah Kills 45, How Can World Enforce ICJ's Ruling to End Assault?

Piers Morgan FLIPS On Netanyahu Over Rafah Bombing: A Mistake? No It Wasn't: Briahna Joy Gray

Israel Massacres Children, Which The Western Press Says Is Fine

Israel has not only completely disregarded the orders of the International Court of Justice to cease its assault on Rafah as we expected it to do, but has actually ramped up its ruthlessness as though trying to make a point. There were reportedly more than 60 Israeli airstrikes on the southernmost city in the Gaza strip in the 48 hours after the ICJ ruling, including a horrifying massacre on a displacement camp full of civilians in tents.

The ABC reports:

Israeli air strikes have killed at least 35 Palestinians and wounded dozens in an area in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah designated for the displaced, Palestinian health and civil emergency service officials said.

Gaza’s Health Ministry said women and children made up most of the dead and dozens of wounded.

The strike took place in Tel Al-Sultan neighbourhood in western Rafah on Sunday, local time, where thousands of people were taking shelter after many fled the eastern areas of the city where Israeli forces began a ground offensive over two weeks ago.

The video footage coming out about this massacre is extremely graphic and will stay with you for the rest of your life if you choose to watch it. It shows charred and dismembered bodies, and small children whose heads are missing and partly missing. On social media I’ve seen numerous people observing that the lies about Hamas beheading babies on October 7 have been used by Israel to justify atrocities in which actual babies are really being beheaded.

Electronic Intifada’s Ali Abunimah notes that this was at a camp which just days ago Israel had told civilians was a safe zone that they should move to.

The Gaza media office reports that the attack took place next to an UNRWA logistics base, which is about as clear an answer to the UN court’s order to cease its genocidal massacres in Rafah as you could possibly ask for. As Maya Angelou said, when someone shows you who they are, believe them.

This happens to have occurred at precisely the same time viral attention is coming to an article The Atlantic published a few days ago which includes the assertion that killing children is legally permissible under certain circumstances.

Writing that allowing journalists into Gaza would be a “risk” for Israel because “war is ugly”, The Atlantic’s Graeme Wood uses the phrase “legally killed child” to argue that journalistic footage of dead children which Israel killed lawfully would still be damaging to Israeli PR interests.

“To rebut Hamas’s allegations by letting journalists see the war up close would be a calculated risk,” Wood writes. “Even when conducted legally, war is ugly. It is possible to kill children legally, if for example one is being attacked by an enemy who hides behind them. But the sight of a legally killed child is no less disturbing than the sight of a murdered one.”

Think about the kind of worldview which could publish something like that. This made it through the entire editing process in a mainstream liberal publication.

Anyone who’s been following the Gaza genocide on social media today will be seeing this phrase “legally killed child” alongside footage of children ripped apart by Israeli military explosives in a civilian displacement camp — a pairing which, if you have a beating heart in your chest and a functioning empathy center in your brain, will spark a very special kind of rage inside you.

The way these two points dance together just says so much about what we’re dealing with here, when you take a step back and really look at it. It says so much about Israel. It says so much about western civilization. It says so much about the western press in general and liberal war propaganda rags like The Atlantic in particular. It says so much about the kind of mainstream political worldview which could allow for such a thing to exist. And it says we live in a civilization that has gone completely, utterly insane.


Global shock after Israeli airstrike kills dozens in Rafah tent camp

An Israeli airstrike that caused a huge blaze at a tented area for displaced people in Rafah has killed 45 people, medics have said, with images of charred and dismembered children prompting an outcry from global leaders and putting ceasefire talks in jeopardy. Bombing overnight that the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said targeted senior Hamas militants in a precision strike appears to have ignited fires that spread quickly through tents and makeshift accommodation, overwhelming a nearby field hospital operated by the International Committee of the Red Cross and overstretched local hospitals.

The health ministry in the Hamas-controlled area said about half of the dead were women, children and older adults. Barefoot children wandered around the smoking wreckage on Monday as searches for the dead continued and mourning families prepared to bury their loved ones.

Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, said in parliament that “something unfortunately went tragically wrong” with the airstrike. “We are investigating the incident and will reach conclusions, because this is our policy,” he said.

The US, Israel’s staunchest ally and weapons supplier, described the images from the aftermath as devastating.

The strike, one of the deadliest single incidents in the eight-month war to date, came two days after the international court of justice in The Hague, which arbitrates between states, ordered Israel to stop its operation in Rafah immediately.

Israel mocks Biden over Rafah warning

In dismissing calls for Netanyahu’s arrest, the west is undermining its own world order

Since its inception, the international criminal court (ICC) has charged 50 people, 47 of whom were African. Its investigations have also been overwhelmingly focused on war crimes and crimes against humanity in African nations. What has long been understood but never stated is that the court and its processes, to put it bluntly, target a certain type of political leadership that is easier to go after. “The court is built for Africans and thugs like Putin,” is what one appalled elected senior leader reportedly told the ICC prosecutor, Karim Khan, when his team made a recent application for arrest warrants for Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, its defence minister, Yoav Gallant, and three Hamas leaders. ...

It would take a particularly gullible person to believe that it is only the actions of African or Russian leaders that meet the threshold for breaking the rules of engagement in conflict. But there was always a veneer of plausibility. That is now being stripped away by the US and Britain’s indignant rejection of the court’s move against Netanyahu, and the instruction from the international court of justice (ICJ) that Israel ought to protect Palestinians from genocide and halt its offensive in Rafah. Israel has sent its troops to invade another territory, causing the deaths of civilians in the process, yet we are encouraged to think of its campaign as falling along the same lines as all those other “good wars” the west has waged – another of those defensive moral missions during which unfortunate things have happened. Things that somehow never amount to the criminal, because the awfulness of war apparently can’t be avoided.

And besides, Israel is a democracy. The countries that don’t belong in the dock are the ones that investigate themselves, and are seen as not requiring the paternal oversight of global courts. The US Senate delivered a report and indictment of the CIA’s detention and interrogation techniques, while the Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq war condemned Britain’s military campaign and found that the legal basis was dealt with in an unsatisfactory way. That’s as far as the investigations went. The result was apologies (and unrepentant defiance from Tony Blair), and the performance of oversight was enough to maintain a veneer of justice.

Israel’s record obliterates all these exceptions. ... In continuing to treat Israel as a country that is responsible but whose actions are sometimes humanly flawed, its allies are making a perilous calculation that in the long run will undermine their own interests. Their support for Israel’s actions weakens not only international law, but the ability to hold their enemies to account and maintain red lines against belligerent countries in a world where the tools of the international system are becoming ever more important. ... After their dismissal of the ICC and ICJ calls on Israel to comply with international law, how can the US and its partners make a convincing case again that their rules are fair and universal, and so must be followed by all? It is brazenly clear that the rules-based order is not about democratic values, the rule of law and the sanctity of human lives, but the observance of a global hierarchy in which some lives are sacred and others are not. One day, the Gaza war will be over. And what will confront Israel’s allies is a world in which that logic, now plainly stated, is rejected once and for all. The stakes are higher than they realise. They will reap not only moral disgrace, but the crumbling of their entire postwar world order.

Egyptian Soldier DEAD After Israel Border Tensions SKYROCKET

Egyptian soldier killed in fire exchange with Israeli forces near Rafah crossing

An Egyptian soldier was killed in an exchange of fire with Israeli forces at the Rafah crossing on Egypt's border with the Gaza Strip on Monday. Kan public broadcast said no Israeli soldiers were hurt in the incident which left one Egyptian killed and others wounded.

The Israeli military said: "A few hours ago there was a shooting incident on the Egyptian border, the [incident] is under investigation, dialogue is taking place with the Egyptian side."

Egypt's military confirmed one person was killed and said it is investigating the shooting.

Daily News Egypt, an independent English-language Egyptian newspaper, cited unnamed sources as saying Egyptian soldiers were "affected" by the Rafah massacre on Sunday, in which an Israeli bombing led to the killing of 45 Palestinians at a displacement camp.

It was not immediately clear how the fire exchange began. Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, an independent Qatar-based news website, said the Egyptian soldier was killed by sniper fire, according to a security source. The source said the Egyptian side did not shoot first. The Israeli public broadcaster said the Egyptian side fired first and Israeli soldiers acted in self-defence.

US lawmaker: bombing Gaza creates US jobs

Ray McGovern: Is Gaza Civilian Slaughter an Accident?

Reporters Without Borders Files New ICC Complaint Over Journalists Killed by Israel in Gaza

The press freedom group Reporters Without Borders announced Monday that it has filed a third complaint at the International Criminal Court alleging "war crimes against journalists in Gaza," where over 100 media professionals have been killed by Israeli forces since October 7.

Paris-based Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is asking the ICC to investigate the Israel Defense Forces' (IDF) killing of eight Palestinian journalists and wounding of another between December 15 and May 20 and, more broadly, the over 100 media workers slain during the course of Israel's 234-day assault on Gaza.

RSF said it "has reasonable grounds for thinking that some of these journalists were deliberately killed and that the others were the victims of deliberate IDF attacks against civilians" and accused Israel of "an eradication of the Palestinian media."

"Impunity endangers journalists not only in Palestine but also throughout the world," RSF advocacy and assistance director Antoine Bernard said in a statement. "Those who kill journalists are attacking the public's right to information, which is even more essential in times of conflict. They must be held accountable, and RSF will continue to work to this end, in solidarity with Gaza's reporters."

Journalists in RSF's latest complaint include Mustapha Thuraya and Hamza al-Dahdouh, freelancers working for Al Jazeera in Rafah when they were killed by a targeted Israeli drone strike on their vehicle on January 7, and Hazem Rajab, who was injured in the strike.

Georgia passes foreign agents law

US-EU assets pushing color revolution in Georgia

A dark political atmosphere is swirling over the Georgian capital of Tbilisi, and grows more ominous by the day. Prime Minister Irakli Kobakhidze has been told by an EU commissioner he will suffer the fate of Robert Fico, the Slovakian leader still fighting for his life after an assassination attempt by a Ukraine proxy war ultra. US lawmakers are moving to sanction members of the ruling Georgian Dream party, and in parliament on May 14, opposition MP Tako Charkviani threatened: “Believe me, there will be a color revolution in Georgia.”

The cause of this tumult is a bill known as the “foreign influence transparency” law which would compel organizations to publicly disclose their foreign funding. For weeks, the streets of Tbilisi have been filled with tens of thousands of protesters who are demanding that authorities dump the law, which they believe will compromise Georgia’s path to EU membership. Despite vehement condemnation from EU and US officials, the bill has now passed. The US has since threatened to impose visa restrictions on legislators who supported the legislation, and protesters show no sign of giving up.

The sincerity of citizens who continue to occupy public spaces in Tbilisi, for fear their government’s actions will sabotage Georgia’s EU aspirations, cannot be doubted. But there are clear indications that many have been severely misled about the nature of the new law, with some reportedly convinced it will mandate mass surveillance and compel the public to denounce their neighbors as “foreign agents.”

The drive to misinform Georgians about the bill is led primarily by foreign media outlets and foreign-funded NGOs themselves. Today, over 25,000 NGOs are active in Georgia, and nearly all receive foreign funding. Many are bankrolled by the EU, which finances over 130 separate “active projects” and 19,000 small and medium-sized businesses in the country. American intelligence cutouts USAID, and CIA front NED, are also prominent backers of the sector.

Together, these foreign-backed elements are mobilizing their constituents into the streets for a new round of protests that ultimately aim to bring the government down and replace it with one that suits the interests of Brussels and Washington.

Lithuania President Nausėda wins landslide re-election in vote shaped by Russia fears

Lithuania’s President Gitanas Nausėda has won re-election, official results showed, in a vote marked by defence concerns over neighbouring Russia.

The count published by the electoral commission showed that Nausėda won 74.6% of votes with 90% of ballots counted after polls closed on Sunday in the second-round vote.

Voters “have handed me a great mandate of trust and I am well aware that I will have to cherish this,” Nausėda, 60, told journalists in Vilnius.

“Now that I have five years of experience, I believe that I will certainly be able to use this jewel properly, first of all to achieve the goals of welfare for all the people of Lithuania,” he said.

India elections: PM Narendra Modi claims he has been chosen by God

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi has said he believes he has been chosen by God, as the multi-stage Indian election nears its completion. “I am convinced that ‘Parmatma’ (God) sent me for a purpose. Once the purpose is achieved, my work will be one done. This is why I have completely dedicated myself to God,” he told NDTV news channel on Sunday.

Modi, who is hoping to win a third term when the results of the general election are announced on 4 June, said that while God guided him to do a lot of his work, he did so without revealing a larger scheme. “He does not reveal his cards, just keeps making me do things. And I cannot dial him directly to ask what’s next,” he said.

Modi has built up a well-established cult of personality within his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), with many supporters unable to name other cabinet members or their local BJP candidate. The BJP has also actively promoted Hinduism, the majority faith, in every aspect of public life. At the inauguration of the temple in Ayodhya in January, it was Modi, rather than Hindu priests, who played the leading role in the rituals.

Nonetheless, this is believed to be the first time that Modi, who rarely gives interviews and has held no press conferences in his ten years in power, has spoken about himself so candidly as a divine instrument.

US president warns new army officers to be ‘guardians of American democracy’

Joe Biden has called newly graduating US military officers the “guardians of American democracy” at a commencement speech in New York state, where the US president, without mentioning Donald Trump by name, gave strong warnings of unprecedented threats to US freedom.

Biden told the West Point military academy graduating class of 2024 that it is being called upon to tackle threats across the globe as well as preserve America’s ideals at home.

The president, speaking in front of about 1,000 graduating cadets at the US army training academy on Saturday, urged the newly minted officers to “hold fast” to their military oath “not to a political party, not to a president but to the constitution of the United States of America, against all enemies, foreign and domestic”.

In remarks that could be seen as a thinly veiled reference to the threat to democracy Biden believes Trump poses to the US as the two candidates battle for the White House in this November’s election, the president said that the oath taken by the military is “as important to your nation now as it ever has been”.

“From the very beginning, nothing is guaranteed about democracy in America. Every generation has an obligation to defend it, protect it, preserve it – now it is your turn,” said Biden, who cited the right to vote, the right to worship and the right to protest as key freedoms that require “constant vigilance”.

the evening greens

‘Knight in spiny armor’: could lobsters help save Florida’s dying corals?

An unexpected champion has emerged in the increasingly grave battle to save Florida’s imperiled coral reefs: spiny lobsters that urinate in the water and scare off predatory worms and snails seeking to feast on the delicate organisms.

The finding is one of the more bizarre conclusions of a three-year study by scientists from the Florida fish and wildlife conservation commission (FWC), who are also warning it may already be too late for some species of coral to survive without significant human assistance.

Last summer’s record ocean heat further accelerated a 90% decline in healthy coral in the Florida Keys since the 1970s. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) confirmed last month that ongoing high temperatures meant the world was experiencing its fourth global bleaching event of all time, and second in 10 years.

The reef-dwelling lobsters, the researchers say, could act as “knights in spiny armor” as the fight continues to save reefs in various states of degradation from collapsing completely. Not only does the scent of their urine appear to scare off corallivorous snails and fireworms that like to munch on live coral, but the spiny spotted lobsters are partial to themselves eating any of the smaller creatures unaffected by the odor.

“Lobsters urinate quite frequently, it’s part of how they communicate with each other, and they’re social animals so they’ll seek out the odor of other lobsters and aggregate shelters together. Prey can smell that odor and avoid it,” said Casey Butler, associate research scientist and head of the lobster research program at FWC.

In places where nursery-grown coral was planted as part of restoration programs, Butler said, the lobsters had an equally important role in devouring the creatures that harm it.

World has ‘moral responsibility’ to help small island states survive climate crisis – UN agency chief

The world has a “moral responsibility” to support the fight for survival being faced by small island states, according to a leading UN agency chief.

Ahead of the fourth annual conference of small island developing states (Sids) being held in Antigua and Barbuda this week, Jorge Moreira da Silva, the executive director of the (Unops), called for recognition of the problems faced by what he called “some of the most vulnerable economies in the world” who contributed less than 1% to global carbon emissions.

“Because of their unique circumstances and vulnerabilities, Sids face higher levels of debt distress than other developing countries,” said da Silva. “Over 40% of Sids are now on the edge of, or are already grappling with, unsustainable levels of debt. And with every major disaster, private external debt in Sids tends to rise. Between 2016 and 2020, Sids have paid in debt service 18 times more than what they received as climate finance.

“They are excessively dependent on international trade”, he said, “with limited resources, remoteness from major markets, and susceptibility to natural disasters. They were already in an incredibly difficult situation before being severely hit by the economic consequences of the pandemic. As a result, their GDP contracted on average by 6.9% in 2020, compared with 4.8% in all other developing countries.”

The Sids conference encompasses 37 UN member states, including 16 from the Caribbean, which are disproportionately affected by the climate crisis. Da Silva said Sids had limited access to development resources and were often ineligible for debt-relief mechanisms because of their gross national income per capita, even when they are exposed to so much risk. Practical solutions were required to broaden their options, he said.

Ditch brightly coloured plastic, anti-waste researchers tell firms

Retailers are being urged to stop making everyday products such as drinks bottles, outdoor furniture and toys out of brightly coloured plastic after researchers found it degrades into microplastics faster than plainer colours.

Red, blue and green plastic became “very brittle and fragmented”, while black, white and silver samples were “largely unaffected” over a three-year period, according to the findings of the University of Leicester-led project. ...

In this case, scientists from the UK and the University of Cape Town in South Africa used complementary studies to show that plastics of the same composition degrade at different rates depending on the colour.

The UK researchers put bottle lids of various colours on the roof of a university building to be exposed to the sun and the elements for three years. The South African study used plastic items found on a remote beach.

“It’s amazing that samples left to weather on a rooftop in Leicester and those collected on a windswept beach at the southern tip of the African continent show similar results,” said Dr Sarah Key, who led the project. “What the experiments showed is that even in a relatively cool and cloudy environment for only three years, huge differences can be seen in the formation of microplastics.”

Also of Interest

Here are some articles of interest, some which defied fair-use abstraction.

Like So Much Else, The Fuss Over ‘International Law’ Is Really About Narrative Control

It’s Actually Amazing How Stupid The Propaganda Is Getting

ICJ Orders Israel Stop Rafah Attack

Food bound for Gaza rots in the sun as Egypt’s Rafah crossing stays shut

Far-right Israeli settlers step up attacks on aid trucks bound for Gaza

‘Nothing justifies what we have witnessed here’: the doctors returning home from Gaza

Craig Murray: The Drive for War

Social media bosses are ‘the largest dictators’, says Nobel peace prize winner

U.S. Remains Painfully Dependent on China for Silicon and Solar Panels

Clues From Bird Flu’s Ground Zero on Dairy Farms in the Texas Panhandle

Biden PIER SINKING INTO SEA After US Troops Injured

BOONDOGGLE?! $320 Million WASHED OUT To Sea As Gaza Pier SINKS

LA police shamed into arresting pro-Israel UCLA attacker

A Little Night Music

Gil Scott Heron - B-movie

Gil Scott Heron - Delta Man

Gil Scott Heron - Work For Peace

Gil Scott-Heron - Bicentennial Blues

Gil Scott Heron - We Almost Lost Detroit

Gil Scott-Heron - There's A War Going On

Gil Scott-Heron - Possum Slim

Gil Scott-Heron - I'm New Here

Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson - H2Ogate Blues

Gil Scott-Heron - Whitey On the Moon

12 users have voted.


about as far as legally killing

ya can’t tell me these people have
any Humanity inside

well you Could
but I ain’t buying it

pick a fascist any fascist
You get a fascist and You get
a fascist. . .

fuck me Mon
how did we get here?

here’s hoping the sun has
Something to Say

13 users have voted.

Ya got to be a Spirit, cain't be no Ghost. . .

Explain Bldg #7. . . still waiting. . .

If you’ve ever wondered whether you would have complied in 1930’s Germany,
Now you know. . .
sign at protest march

joe shikspack's picture

@Tall Bald and Ugly

yep, there is a surfeit of sick bastards on this planet and dammit i forgot my sun screen again. Smile

have a great evening!

7 users have voted.

@Tall Bald and Ugly

The Sun has a cycle
and a relationship with its planets
that I do not understand

The Planets all spin on their axis
in a synchronicity
of light then dark
that I do not understand

A thin film of what we call life
covers the surface of this planet we call Earth
one form of which we call humans
of which I am one
that I do not understand

Above and below this space and time
that I inhabit are seemingly infinite
layers of cyclical relationships
that I do not understand

Even the relationships of the cells
of my body
which makes everything I experience possible
I do not understand

Perhaps I will never understand
in the way I am looking

But, still, I ask


8 users have voted.

“What the herd hates most is the one who thinks differently; it is not so much the opinion itself, but the audacity of wanting to think for themselves, something that they do not know how to do.”
-Arthur Schopenhauer (1788-1860)

..and this is all the TPTB can come up with?
A dementia-ridden neoliberal fascist, and a moronic populist grifter fascist?
And that fucking numpty christo-fascist Speaker of the House.

Bleeding hell, what we supposed to do here.

These fucking idiots are playing Risk with nuclear consequences for all life on Earth. We deserve much better.

Ineffectual idiots as heads of state, and an outsized and wholly unnecessary military budget are but two symptoms of an empire in collapse. Unfortunately, it seems to want to take every other living thing with it.

There a trillions of lifeless planets in the universe, lets not make Earth one of them as well.

14 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture


yeah, i wonder which dementia-addled, pugnacious, war-mongering jackass "we" will choose to lead us.

have a good evening!

11 users have voted.
snoopydawg's picture


to lie so brazenly while Biden is suppressing freedom of speech and the right to protest….

“From the very beginning, nothing is guaranteed about democracy in America. Every generation has an obligation to defend it, protect it, preserve it – now it is your turn,” said Biden, who cited the right to vote, the right to worship and the right to protest as key freedoms that require “constant vigilance”.

What a load of malarkey from marble mouth.

10 users have voted.

Which AIPAC/MIC/pharma/bank bought politician are you going to vote for? Don’t be surprised when nothing changes.

Voting is like driving with a toy steering wheel.

joe shikspack's picture


i guess both of the demented morons want a civil war if they don't win.


7 users have voted.

spin room.

The White House on Tuesday indicated an Israeli strike that killed dozens of Palestinians in Rafah did not cross a “red line” that would lead to a change in U.S. policy.

Multiple administration officials in press briefings Tuesday described the images out of Rafah as “heartbreaking,” “tragic” and “horrific.” But there was no sign of an impending policy change as a result, because it was an airstrike and not a major ground operation.

“We still don’t believe that a major ground operation in Rafah is warranted. We still don’t want to see the Israelis, as we say, smash into Rafah with large units over large pieces of territory. We still believe that, and we haven’t seen that at this point,” White House spokesperson John Kirby told reporters.

“As a result of this strike on Sunday, I have no policy changes to speak to,” he added. “It just happened. The Israelis are going to investigate it. We’re going to be taking great interest in what they find in that investigation. And we’ll see where it goes from there.”


12 users have voted.
joe shikspack's picture


as long as the israelis keep beheading babies with bombs (like civilized people do) then that's not what we're going to change policy over.

kirby has got to be the most disgusting liar that this administration has produced. i think that he may be eligible for the ari fleischer award for lying above and beyond duty.

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snoopydawg's picture


A good reminder that this is not the view of President Joe Biden. It is the view of Donald Trump.

This from an essay very critical of Biden for letting Bibi 'kick sand in his face' and not holding to his red lines.

More from the "Not an IDF spokesperson'

Since Smurlaka is taken, Kirby needs his own nickname? How about ‘Absolute Ghoulish F***face'? Might need some work…I’m open to suggestions. Just another face that
1-800-bitch-slap was invented for.



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Which AIPAC/MIC/pharma/bank bought politician are you going to vote for? Don’t be surprised when nothing changes.

Voting is like driving with a toy steering wheel.

snoopydawg's picture


It not the message.

It’s the continuous screwing the base that’s making them flee the dem party. It was Obama’s epic screwing that put Trump in the WH. It’s also the rampant flirting with nuclear war and Biden’s assaults on our freedoms. It’s not rocket surgery.

10 users have voted.

Which AIPAC/MIC/pharma/bank bought politician are you going to vote for? Don’t be surprised when nothing changes.

Voting is like driving with a toy steering wheel.

joe shikspack's picture


it's not democrat messaging. it's democrats that are full of shit.

7 users have voted.

(Bloomberg) -- Sudan’s army said it’s poised to get weapons from Russia in return for letting Moscow establish a military fueling station on the Red Sea coast, a blow for the US as its opponents gain influence in the African country torn apart by civil war.

A military delegation will travel to Russia within a few days to conclude the deal, assistant commander-in-chief Yasser Al-Atta told the Gulf-based Al-Hadath TV channel on Saturday. Authorities will get “vital weapons and munitions,” he said, describing the planned Russian outpost as “not exactly a military base.”

Moscow has long coveted a foothold on Sudan’s 530-mile (853 kilometer) coastline, and a final agreement would stoke Western concerns over the country’s growing influence in Africa.

A Russian naval base was first mooted during the reign of veteran Sudanese dictator Omar al-Bashir, but after his ouster in a 2019 popular uprising the US and others moved to reestablish full relations and secure a new ally in a tumultuous region.

The brutal conflict has upset those calculations, increasingly drawing in foreign actors and sparking angst in Western capitals. The United Arab Emirates has been accused of providing weapons to the RSF group that’s fighting the army — allegations it denies.

Meanwhile, Iran, once an ally of Bashir’s Islamist regime, has this year provided armed drones to Sudan’s military in a move that helped it seize back large parts of the capital, Khartoum, Bloomberg News has reported.

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joe shikspack's picture


the end of capitalism? nah, they'll start it all over again.

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usefewersyllables's picture

@joe shikspack

The cockroaches will…

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Twice bitten, permanently shy.

soryang's picture

The opinion is an interesting one but misleading.

The law of armed conflict and crimes against humanity are not "rules of engagement." Rules of engagement are tactical in nature. They are devised as matters of guidance for the military chain of command, down to the lowest military unit including the individual soldier, airmen or sailor. Those rules direct the conduct of operations to be undertaken in the various circumstances or "scenarios" that may arise. They are not laws but their substance in many cases may and should be affected by law, yet ROE are secondary and in the nature of operational guidance. By lowering the standard, the author subtly minimizes and changes the nature of the breaches known as crimes against humanity. In fact, breaches or violations of ROE in the field may or may not involve violations of international law such as the Geneva Conventions, or other international laws depending upon what rule of engagement it is and the factual circumstances. Use of the wrong term muddies the waters from the outset. The rules themselves have no legal authority. In fact, some countries ROE as applied in the field may violate the law of armed conflict, the Geneva Conventions, and international humanitarian law. That's the problem isn't it?

...its allies are making a perilous calculation that in the long run will undermine their own interests.

In the long run? Their interests are already "undermined," if not completely destroyed. .

"X is a democracy." Imperial operations involve the total negation of the human rights of the victims. We attach this ideological label by nature of what- pardon, excuse, exception, mitigation, or license?

"...the performance of oversight was enough to maintain a veneer of justice." Oversight without accountability or enforcement maintained nothing. Maybe it fooled some who don't pay attention. That's why this happens. It is much less likely to fool anyone in the future. is this what she means when she says "in the long run? It's a propaganda fail, like the pontoon pier.

Liked the article on nuclear armageddon. This Danial Davis interview below of Ted Postol is quite relevant in that regard. I know more than a few have a technical background and don't need to review nuclear weapon basics so I cued this long video, it's over an hour, to the point where Postol concludes there is no hope for Ukraine, and that Putin is basically correct in assessment that western leadership is uneducated, reckless, and in denial. For this reason, he says, when it comes to the risk of nuclear war, they don't know what they are doing. This part starts around 48:45. Earlier in the video at about 22:20 he describes the "very limited nuclear attack," and nuclear weapon battlefield effects. If you've never studied the application of nuclear weapons, the entire video is worthwhile.

I listened to Prof. Hosaka Yuji describe "facilitation agreements" apparently being negotiated between Japan and South Korea, as well as France, maybe UK and other EU countries. These are in the nature of Shengen agreements for "free passage" if you will, of military armaments and supplies across borders. It's essentially an easing of border restrictions. Imo these suggest future military commitments, at least in one direction or another, that may violate Article 9 of the Japanese constitution which appears to be something of a dead letter at this point, insofar as it prohibits offensive military operations. Yuji believes Japan and the Philippines already have a "facilitation agreement." He didn't really say what the specifics were, those are probably classified anyway.

In the South Korean context, a Shengen Arrangement is nominally aimed at facilitating tourism and trade; but is viewed by Yuji as trojan horse of sorts aimed at facilitating troop movements. Accompanied by a "facilitation agreement" it provides the foundation for a military alliance troop and force movements. According to Yuji this is being done below the radar so as not to alarm the South Korean public who would largely be adamantly opposed to the presence of Japanese forces within their borders. I'm reminded of Yoon's statement during his presidential campaign that he could imagine the presence of Japanese troops in South Korea under certain circumstances.

The Cpl. Chae special investigation bill failed to overcome the presidential veto last night (1:00AM EST) 179 votes in favor (so called pan opposition vote) to 111 against (conservative PPP vote). It fell pretty much along party lines, so the PPP discipline was enforced very effectively from the Presidential Office's point of view. The issue will likely be revisited in a day or two in the new 22nd National Assembly. That was the last vote of the 21st Assembly, elected in 2020. The vote is really viewed as the foundation for an impeachment vote, because the evidence is overwhelming that the Presidential Office interfered unlawfully in the investigation of Cpl. Chae's death. The forensic evaluations of phone records of high ranking officials are being published in various South Korean media.

Thanks Joe for the EBs!

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語必忠信 行必正直