Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Steel Pollution - 'Blood of angels'

Musical Innerlube: Deerhoof - 'Wrong Time Capsule'

Directed by Martha Colburn

US troops urged to share faith in Afghanistan

4 May, 2009

US soldiers in Afghanistan have been filmed with local language Bibles and urged to be "witnesses for Jesus" despite anti-proselytising rules.

Al Jazeera's James Bays reports.

China has 'canceled US credit card': lawmaker

WASHINGTON (AFP) — China, wary of the troubled US economy, has already "canceled America's credit card" by cutting down purchases of debt, a US congressman said Thursday.

China has the world's largest foreign reserves, believed to be mostly in dollars, along with around 800 billion dollars in US Treasury bonds, more than any other country.

But Treasury Department data shows that investors in China have sharply curtailed their purchases of bonds in January and February.

Representative Mark Kirk, a member of the House Appropriations Committee and co-chair of a group of lawmakers promoting relations with Beijing, said China had "very legitimate" concerns about its investments.

"It would appear, quietly and with deference and politeness, that China has canceled America's credit card," Kirk told the Committee of 100, a Chinese-American group.

"I'm not sure too many people on Capitol Hill realize that this is now happening," he said.

The Republican lawmaker said that China was justified in concerns about returns from finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which were bailed out by the US government due to the financial crisis.

Kirk said he was the first member of Congress to tour the Bureau of Public Debt, which trades bonds, and was alarmed at how much debt was being bought by the US Federal Reserve due to absence of foreign investors.

~ more... ~

All ways thirteen

A Year of Cool Comic Book Moments - Day 113

...The Doctor Thirteen story in the back-up pages of Tales of the Unexpected #1-8 (collected as the trade paperback Doctor Thirteen: Architecture and Morality) tells the story of Doctor Thirteen, a classic DC character whose position as a skeptic began to look pretty foolish when DC took him from his out-of-continuity back-up stories and began to have him interact with the rest of the fantastical DC Universe...

Bloody Sunday victim and campaigner buried

...Thirteen other civilians died on the day and the outcome of the Saville Inquiry into the Bloody Sunday killings is expected to be published in the form of a 5,000-page report this autumn...

Swine Flu Pandemic “Imminent”

...There are thirteen suspected cases here in Washington state, with the number suspected to grow as the flu spreads from human to human. The WHO states that we are passed the point of banning travel or closing borders, but it is time to practice “vigilance.”...

Asia sets up multi billion dollar emergency fund

...Finance ministers from thirteen Asian countries have announced efforts to create a 120 billion US dollar emergency currency pool...

"Loner" shoots 13 dead at Azerbaijan college

...Thirteen people were killed at a university in Azerbaijan Thursday when a gunman went from floor to floor firing on teachers and students after the bell rang for morning classes...

Uranium International Corp. Enters Letter Agreement to Purchase Thirteen Exploration Licences Covering Eight Uranium Deposits in Sweden

...Uranium International Corp. ("Uranium International") (OTC Bulletin Board: URNI) has entered a Letter Agreement to purchase a total of thirteen exploration licences covering eight uranium deposits held by Continental Precious Minerals Ltd. ("Continental") in Sweden...

Thirteen Hitler Watercolors Outpace Their Estimates at Auction

...Thirteen watercolors by Adolf Hitler have sold for £95,589 ($126,791) at an auction house in Shropshire, England, the Times (London) reports...

Strip searching a thirteen-year-old: Constitutional?

...The Chief Justices are attempting to decide whether a strip-search of a 13-year old girl suspected of carrying Ibuprofen was unconstitutional...

Thirteen year-old revealed as winner of Apple's billion app contest

...Apple on Friday revealed the name of the winner of its billion app countdown contest. It's Connor Mulcahey, a 13 year-old who hails from Weston, Conn...

British swine flu cases rise to 13

...The number of confirmed swine flu cases in Britain has risen to 13...

13 swine flu cases confirmed in Canada

Confirmed Swine Flu cases in Spain now 13

New Zealand records 13 confirmed swine flu cases, 104 suspected cases

Police 'misuse' anti-terror laws

...Dear confirmed that the union was submitting the accounts of thirteen journalists who allege that they were assaulted by police to the Independent Police Complaints Commission...

Review - Killing Freud

The book comprises thirteen chapters (some previously published in scholarly journals) with notes, bibliography and index.

Egypt balloon crash injures 13 foreign tourists

...Thirteen foreign tourists were injured on Saturday when their hot air balloon crashed in the Egyptian temple city of Luxor, medical and security officials said...

The political economy of power

...Without fail, the one lie that all of the above seem to propagate is that there is an energy shortage. It goes something like this:

Since we can only generate x amount of power and the practical demand of each and every user is greater than x, x will have to be allocated. Of course, someone will have to make this allocation, and this someone is the state. The state, as a supposed neutral actor and invested with, to quote Max Weber, “a successful claim on monopoly of the legitimate use of force”, will decide that industry will get so much power, agriculture so much, and residential users so much. The best allocation of resources will be on the basis of what is deemed in the best interest of the common good. It may be unfortunate that not all of us get the power we want, but that's life and sacrifices have to be made.

This story is sly and deceiving. To start with, there is no energy shortage in the universe. The universe is awash with energy (all there is, after all, is energy and matter), and energy can neither be destroyed nor created. For the purposes of the human race, there is a virtually unlimited amount of energy for the species to tap into. And, therein lies the problem. It is not all that easy to convert energy into power, and part of the struggle of human history has been various attempts to tap into the energy of the universe. This has primarily been achieved through conversion of solar energy into plant and animal energy. This energy chain, like all energy chains, is never 100% efficient. Each time energy is converted there is a certain amount of energy loss. Humans have then eaten plant and animal materials, converting these to human bio-chemical energy. Humans have then used that energy for labour to hunt more animals, grow more crops, build dwellings, and contest for resources (war and conflict). For most of history, the primary source of useable energy has been human muscles and intellect1.

This was the case during the Ancient Greek, Persian and Egyptian societies. It was certainly true during the Roman Empire. And, partly because of this, all of these societies were based upon slave labour as the primary sources of energy conversion. Since human beings were the most efficient sources of energy (human beings have the ability for rational thought, they can solve problems, are fairly durable, and can be taught to do things with greater efficiency than a cow or a horse), elite groups used slave labour to build, manufacture and grow all the materials needed for those societies to function. The elite classes functioned as managers and grew rich from their exploitation of the labour of others.

Things began to change during the Middle Ages in Europe. During this time, while human power still remained supreme, animal power began to be used more and more frequently in agriculture; wood (plant energy) was beginning to be more and more important, especially in the production of iron and other metals; and water was used in mills for the production of flour, although, slightly later, windmills were used for this purpose. One notable consequence of this 'new' strategy of converting energy for human use was the complete and utter destruction of Europe's forests. This led to what is called an energy crisis and forced European society into a potentially painful situation: Find another source of power or undergo an economic collapse and a return to the Dark Ages. The ultimate solution was coal.

However, the most important lesson that should be learnt from this era, with regard to current energy conversion practises, was the political situation regarding water and windmills. As Debeir, Deléage, and Hémery point out in In the Servitude of Power, these two different energy sources were used in two different manners despite having the same primary technological function, grinding grain into flour. Watermills required access to flowing water and were relatively expensive to build. As the feudal structure of the day controlled access to watercourses and held a great deal of society's capital, the aristocracy was able to own and control the watermills, thus, locking down an important part of agricultural production for its sole benefit. The peasantry had no access to the watermills, and had to compete in the processing of flour with older, less efficient methods of production. Quite clearly, we can see the link between ownership of energy conversion and socio-economic relationships. As Debeir et al state, “[Water]Mills were not only a good deal for some, but also tended to bolster an oppressive social structure.”2

Windmills were another story. Not only was wind part of the commons (and thus a renewable resource accessible to all social classes), it was cheaper to build windmills than watermills. The increasing use of windmills enabled the burghers, cities and peasantry to compete favourably in the production of flour (for which the market was growing as bread became more and more part of the general diet). Windmills also also encouraged competition with the aristocracy in the important realm of agricultural production. This began to have a significant impact in political relations, especially in the contest between free cities and feudal landowners, one of the central conflicts of the Middle Ages. Once again, Debier et al state:

Thus windmills were established in the conditions of freedom that opened with the growth of cities, and established a further breach in the lords' energy monopolies. Although feudal reaction against the new facilities persisted - 'The windmill was the commoners' mill which feudal law tried to take over' - it proved unable to stop the irresistible movement which continued until the dawn of the nineteenth century.3
The dawn of the nineteenth century brought about a major technological, social and economic revolution, the Industrial Revolution. While the social, political and economic effects of the Industrial Revolution are well documented, the roles of new sources of energy conversion are often overlooked. Coal was at the heart of the Industrial Revolution. Basically, coal is plant matter that has decomposed, chemically altered, compressed and hardened over millions of years. Coal is made up of carbon (between 50% to 90%, depending on type/grade), sulphur, methane, water and various other materials. Essentially, coal is the storage of chemical energy produced via long dead plant photosynthesis. Most of the coal used today was formed during the Carboniferous era (280 to 345 million years ago).

While the use of coal had been around for thousands of years, the Industrial Revolution mined and used coal to a degree never seen before. A new energy cycle was born with coal (and its offspring, steam), the fossil fuel cycle. Coal was used to drive steam engines, railways, furnaces (purified coal (coke) replaced wood as the primary source of heat for metallurgy), shipping and household heating. It provided such an intense and useful source of energy that the Industrial Revolution was entirely dependent on the mining, distribution, and burning of coal. And it should come as no surprise that this valuable energy resource was not in the hands of the common people although it was they who died of Black Lung, but instead in the hands of the burgeoning, to borrow a phrase from Tom Wolfe, “masters of the universe” - the capitalist class. While perhaps not of conscious design, there was no way that the windmill story (commoner power equivalent to that owned by the feudal lords) would be repeated with coal. Coal quickly became a privately owned commodity to be sold and traded as necessary, and fortunes were made4. This, in turn, meant that the majority of the populace were precluded from control of the energy chain and that the power (both economic and political) of the newly formed capitalist class was further increased. The conflict between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat that has consumed human history since provides the basis of entire branches of philosophy, history and political analysis...

~ more... ~

'I see the divide-and-conquer strategy every day'

From Ruling by divide-and-conquer by Caneisha Mills

The biggest obstacle that has prevented the working class in the United States from realizing its potential as an agent of revolutionary transformation has been the capacity of the ruling class—that is, the capitalists—to fine-tune a system of division that pits worker against worker and inhibits the unity workers need to successfully fight for their common class interests.

From its inception, the ruling class in the United States has been extremely conscious of the fact that it is a minority stratum of society, and that those it oppresses and exploits constitutes a huge majority that could easily overwhelm them. And so it instituted a system of divide and conquer among those it exploited, which has been foundational to the maintenance of their class rule.

It is worthwhile to take a moment to review the brief history of how the capitalist class has maintained social control despite its status as a small minority in society.

In his seminal work “The Rise of American Civilization,” historian Charles Beard wrote that at least half of the immigrants in North America before the revolution of 1776 were either African slaves or indentured servants. In other words, the original foundation of “American society” rested not upon free labor but upon slave and semi-servile labor, both Black and white.

In the four southernmost of the 13 colonies, enslaved African peoples constituted either half or more than half of the entire population. The profits from the slave trade were the cornerstone of Anglo-American commerce, and enslaved labor was the cornerstone of the majority of U.S. agriculture. Slave labor was the dominant form of labor in ancient society, and was the economic foundation of the classical Greek and Roman societies. Slavery vanished as a significant form of economic production for centuries, only to be reborn again with the expansion of capitalism into North America, the Caribbean and South America—but not only in the Americas.

The monarchies of England, Spain and other European powers derived the greatest source of their profits from trade in human beings. Slave labor enabled the primitive accumulation of capital—the accumulation of vast wealth that fueled the expansion capitalism by leaps and bounds in its early formative stages.

The resort to African slavery was not first and foremost the byproduct of the racism of the nascent capitalist class, either in Europe or in North America. They were in fact prepared to enslave people regardless of race or nationality. They enslaved indigenous Indian peoples, but as it turned out, most of the enslaved indigenous people in the West Indies, for instance, got sick and died in captivity, or were massacred as they resisted.

Thousands of German serfs were sold by their lords to slave merchants and ship owners. After the British conquest of Ireland in the middle of the 17th century, over 100,000 men, women and children in Ireland were seized by the English troops and shipped over to the West Indies, where they were sold into slavery on the tobacco plantations. The great Irish socialist James Connelly reported that one British company alone was responsible for shipping over 6,400 Irish girls and boys into “New World” slavery.

The problem facing the tiny slave-owning capitalist classes in North America and the Caribbean was that a united uprising of slaves, indentured servants from Europe, poor farmers and the indigenous population could easily overwhelm them. There were many instances in the 16th and 17th centuries of such nascent united fronts.

The ruling classes in the “New World” were not yet protected by standing armies and evolved repressive state institutions such as those that had developed in Europe. They stood exposed to revolt and feared they could be literally slaughtered at any moment by the oppressed.

Racism the foundation

The rulers lived in terror because of their exposure. This is what led them to the divide-and-conquer strategy that shaped the destiny of the United States. Racism, white supremacist ideology, a highly refined system of apartheid, shock-and-awe terror against the enslaved people and the eventual prohibition of slavery for poor whites were the foundation of this strategy.

In short, racism developed as a system of class rule for the tiny capitalist class. Without the promotion of racism as a comprehensive system, the capitalists would have been crushed by a unified revolt of the oppressed classes.

The white oppressive ruling class sought to provide relative privilege to the oppressed white working population. They promoted white supremacy as an ideological tool to pit the working-class white population against the African and indigenous population. White skin became identified with “free labor,” while Black skin became identified with the most severe forms of oppression and brutality. Every slave uprising was met with the most vicious assault. Those who rose up were demonized in the media, educational system and religious institutions.

The evolution of this system over five centuries was full of complexities, but one thing is clear: Racism is historically a creation of the capitalists. It is not a byproduct of “human nature” or the inherent inability of different sectors of our class to unite.

GCHQ speaks out about its Intelligence & Security mission in the Internet age

From Public Technology.net :

5 May, 2009

The Government's Intelligence Agency GCHQ, made a rare statement at the week about its plans for monitoring of UK web and comms traffic.

This is what GCHQ said:
"GCHQ has two important missions: Signals Intelligence and Information Assurance. Our Signals Intelligence work provides vital information to support Government in the fields of national security, military operations, law enforcement and economic well being.

The intelligence we provide is at the heart of the struggle against terrorism and also contributes to the prevention and detection of serious crime. GGHQ supplies intelligence to the UK armed forces, wherever they may be deployed in the world. Information Assurance is about protecting Government data - communications and information systems - from hackers and other threats.

GCHQ is heavily dependent on technology in order to execute our global missions. An increasingly rapidly changing digital world demands speedy innovation in our technical systems, allowing us to operate at internet pace, as the information age allows our targets to. One of our greatest challenges is maintaining our capability in the face of the growth in internet-based communications and voice over internet telephony. We must reinvest continuously to keep up with the methods that are used by those who threaten the UK and its interests. Just as our predecessors at Bletchley Park mastered the use of the first computers, today, partnering with industry, we need to master the use of internet technologies and skills that will enable us to keep one step ahead of the threats. This is what mastering the internet is about. GCHQ is not developing technology to enable the monitoring of all internet use and phone calls in Britain, or to target everyone in the UK. Similarly, GCHQ has no ambitions, expectations or plans for a database or databases to store centrally all communications data in Britain.

Because we rely upon maintaining an advantage over those that would damage UK interests, it is usually the case that we will not disclose information about our operations and methods. People sometimes assume that secrecy comes at the price of accountability but nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, GCHQ is subject to rigorous parliamentary and judicial oversight (the Intelligence and Security Committee of parliamentarians, and two senior members of the judiciary: the Intelligence Services Commissioner and the Interception of Communications Commissioner) and works entirely within a legal framework that complies with the European Convention on Human Rights.

The new technology that GCHQ is developing is designed to work under the existing legal framework. It is an evolution of current capability within current accountability and oversight arrangements The Intelligence Services Act 1994 and the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 underpin activities at GCHQ - both existing systems and those we are planning and building at the moment. The purposes for which interception may be permitted are set out explicitly in the legislation: national security, safeguarding our economic well being and the prevention and detection of serious crime. Interception for other purposes is not lawful and we do not do it. GCHQ does not target anyone indiscriminately - all our activities are proportionate to the threats against which we seek to guard and are subject to tests on those grounds by the Commissioners. The legislation also sets out the procedures for Ministers to authorise interception; GCHQ follows these meticulously. GCHQ only acts when it is necessary and proportionate to do so; GCHQ does not spy at will.

GCHQ is one of the three UK Intelligence Agencies and a part of the UK's National Intelligence Machinery. GCHQ works in partnership with the Security Service (also known as MI5) and the Secret Intelligence Service (also known as MI6) to protect the UK's national security interests.

GCHQ's headquarters are in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire. It has two much smaller sites in Cornwall and Yorkshire but most of the c5500 staff work at the impressive state of the art building at Benhall in Cheltenham. The building, often referred to locally as the Doughnut, is a dramatic landmark at the entrance to the spa town of Cheltenham. A second smaller site is located in the Oakley area of Cheltenham.

Director GCHQ reports to the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs. Our primary customers are the Ministry of Defence, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and law enforcement agencies but we also serve a wide range of other Government Departments.

Posted by: Editor

"Internet has to be free, but not regulation free" - Harbour on telecoms package

Information society

5 May, 2009

"The telecoms package has never been about anything to do with restrictions on the internet," Malcolm Harbour told us ahead of Parliament's debate Tuesday on the telecoms package, which aims to reform the existing European electronic communications framework. The new legislation will ease the use of electronic communications services for European consumers, and the measures taken on users' internet access will have to respect their fundamental rights.
Mr Harbour, is guiding the consumer protection-related issues of the proposed legislation through parliament. Other aspects involve radio spectrum measures and the creation of a body to step up co-operation between national regulators to tackle telecoms regulation. Read the interview and tell us what you think about policing the internet.
One of the last outstanding issues during the talks between MEPs and Ministers was measures regarding access to electronic communications services. How do the new proposals concern users' internet access and use?
This directive package has never been about copyright enforcement. The Parliament cannot impose on a country conditions about how it organises its judicial system. That is a basic element of subsidiarity.
What we have done is to make it absolutely clear that the right to access the internet is part of European citizen's fundamental rights and so the Convention on European Rights and Fundamental Freedoms will apply.
Issues about limiting access to website are dealt with by national governments. There is not a European prescription on this matter. For example in France you cannot access a website that sells Nazis memorabilia; the French government decided that.
What we can do at European level is to make a general requirement for consumers to have information about sites that are restricted, so you as a consumer are entitled to know if a provider is limiting access to certain sites and for what reasons.
You might choose to have a service-limited package; nobody has ever suggested that we have a general rule that if you buy an electronic communications service package you will have access to everything. That's like saying that if you have a bookshop you are legally obliged to stock every book.
According to rumours in cyberpsace the proposed new rules will impose conditional access to internet, providers will be able to limit the number of site you're visiting and Skype could be blocked. Is Internet freedom really at risk?
That's pure fantasy. The Telecoms package has never been about anything to do with restrictions on the internet. I am astonished to see this remarkable text from Black-out Europe. There is absolutely nothing in this proposal that says anything about that.
What consumer-friendly measures are there?
Information will be much more transparent and open, making it easier for consumers to change service providers. In the precontractual information they will have to know if they are tied in for a service for a particular time. Also operators will not be able to tie in users for more than 24 months, because in a very fast moving world like the internet that's a disincentive to change.
Alongside that it will be easier for people to transfer their telephone number from one service provider to another; that has to be done within one working day. We have also stepped up the quality of the emergency service, you will have caller location information on your handset, which could be a life or death issue.
We have also strengthened price transparency, availability of price comparison websites, and the ability of the national regulators to oblige operators to provide service access for disabled people. Consumers will be able to request a price cap when their usage reaches a certain amount during a month. If your personal data is released inadvertantly by communications providers onto the internet they have to give you a proper notification of that.
How much should the Internet be policed, if at all?
Clearly the internet has to be policed because it is being used for illicit activities such as terrorist activities, child pornography, child trafficking and so on.
The basic principle is that internet always has to be a free internet, but it is not completely regulation free.

~ European Parliament ~

Holiday week announced at Russian carmaker

SAMARA, May 4 (/*Itar-Tass
- A week of May holidays has been announced at Russia's AvtoVAZ
carmaker, its press service reported on Monday. This is done in line
with the regime of saving production costs and maintaining jobs.

May 4 to 8 have been announced days off at the enterprise with the
compensation of two thirds of average salaries as it is done during the
idle time.

The plant will be reopened on May 12. In May, the personnel engaged in
the production of Lada Priora, Lada Kalina, Lada Samara and Lada
2105/2107 makes will work four days a week in two six-hour shifts.

Workers producing Lada 4x4 vehicles will work five days a week in two
eight-hour shifts. The personnel not engaged in the production of cars
and urgent work will not work in May, but will get two-thirds of their
average salaries.

The plant seeks to avoid sackings. The decision on the week of holidays
has been coordinated with the plant's trade union committee.
Kindergartens, canteens and health centres will keep operating.

Flu kills the torture memos

by Lori Price

Global Research, 26 Apr, 2009

Citizens for Legitimate Government

In a 'Holy convenience, Batman!' moment, a 'unique' flu virus (one likely concocted in US Army labs) overtakes media coverage of revelations that the highest levels of the US government instructed the CIA (and private contractors) to torture terror suspects.

Scientists said the virus combines genetic material from pigs, birds and humans in a way researchers have not seen before. “We are very, very concerned,” World Health Organization spokesman Thomas Abraham said. “We have what appears to be a novel virus and it has spread from human to human,” he said. “It's all hands on deck at the moment.”

Guess where the first swine flu outbreak occurred? That's right, Fort Dix, New Jersey, in 1976. Also likely created in a US Army lab. Thirteen soldiers died, leading the US government to force a questionable vaccine on the population -- backed by a legal liability escape clause mandated by and for the pharma-terrorists. Next, people started dying not from the flu -- but from the *vaccine.*

Every major media outlet has reported the fact that US/UK bioterrorists have been manipulating the avian flu virus in university and Army labs. This new flu strain, one that 'no one has ever seen,' contains avian flu. Now, how does *that* happen?

CLG has been covering flu 'oddities' for eight years. See: Flu 'Oddities' and Flu 'Oddities' News Archives.


U.S. denies producing biological weapons from bird flu samples
--Media: U.S. denies Indonesia's allegation on bird flu virus 17 Mar 2008 The United States has flatly denied allegations it was producing biological weapons from bird flu samples sent by Indonesia to the World Health Organization, the English daily The Jakarta Post reported Monday. Michael H. Anderson, counselor for Public Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Indonesia, [has issued the denial]. However, Indonesian senior biodefense researcher Isro Samihardjo said the U.S. could use bird flu virus samples from Indonesia to develop weapons at the Los Alamos Laboratory. Isro was speaking at a meeting about Health Minister Siti Fadilah Supari's newly released book here Saturday. In her book "It's Time for the World to Change, Divine Hands behind Bird Flu," Siti writes of her suspicions about a conspiracy between the U.S. and the WHO.

Experts identify genes for bird flu replication 09 Jul 2008 Scientists have identified around 100 genes that the H5N1 bird flu virus needs in a host in order to replicate, and this finding may help in the hunt for ways to block foment its proliferation.

Army: 3 vials of virus samples missing from Maryland facility 22 Apr 2009 Missing vials of a potentially dangerous virus have prompted an Army investigation into the disappearance from a lab in Maryland. The Army's Criminal Investigation Command agents have been visiting Fort Detrick in Frederick, Maryland, to investigate the disappearance of the vials. The vials contained samples of Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis... In 97 percent of cases, humans with the virus suffer flu-like symptoms, but it can be deadly in about 1 out of 100 cases, according to Caree Vander Linden, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases.

Scientists isolate genes that made 1918 flu lethal 29 Dec 2008 By mixing and matching a contemporary flu virus with the "Spanish flu" -- a virus that killed between 20 and 50 million people 90 years ago in history's most devastating outbreak of infectious disease -- researchers have identified a set of three genes that helped underpin the extraordinary virulence of the 1918 virus. Writing today (Dec. 29) in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a team led by University of Wisconsin-Madison virologists Yoshihiro Kawaoka and Tokiko Watanabe identifies genes that gave the 1918 virus the capacity to reproduce in lung tissue, a hallmark of the pathogen that claimed more lives than all the battles of World War I combined.

Killer flu recreated in the lab 07 Oct 2004 Scientists have shown that tiny changes to modern flu viruses could render them as deadly as the 1918 strain which killed millions. A US team added two genes from a sample of the 1918 virus to a modern strain known to have no effect on mice. Animals exposed to this composite were dying within days of symptoms similar to those found in human victims of the 1918 pandemic.

Venture capital firm set to reap rewards on swine flu 24 Apr 2009 The swine flu outbreak is likely to benefit one of the most prolific and successful venture capital firms in the United States: Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Thomson Reuters Private Equity Week reported on Friday. Shares of the two public companies in the firm's portfolio of eight Pandemic and Bio Defense companies -- BioCryst Pharmaceuticals and Novavax -- jumped Friday on news that the swine flu killed a reported 60 people in Mexico and has infected people in the United States. The World Health Organization said the [unique] virus appears to be susceptible to Roche's flu drug Tamiflu, also known as oseltamivir, but not to older flu drugs such as amantadine.

Rumsfeld's growing stake in Tamiflu --Defense Secretary, ex-chairman of flu treatment rights holder, sees portfolio value growing. 31 Oct 2005 The prospect of a bird flu outbreak may be panicking people around the globe, but it's proving to be very good news for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and other politically connected investors in Gilead Sciences, the California biotech company that owns the rights to Tamiflu, the influenza remedy that's now the most-sought after drug in the world. Rumsfeld served as Gilead (Research)'s chairman from 1997 until he joined the Bush administration in 2001, and he still holds a Gilead stake valued at between $5 million and $25 million, according to federal financial disclosures filed by Rumsfeld.

CLG: Baxter working on vaccine to stop swine flu, though admitted sending live pandemic flu viruses to subcontractor By Lori Price 26 Apr 2009 The OMFG moment of the century. Illinois-based Baxter working on vaccine to 'stop' swine flu outbreak in Mexico 25 Apr 2009. But, looky here! Baxter admits sending live avian flu viruses to subcontractor --People familiar with biosecurity rules are dismayed by evidence that human H3N2 and avian H5N1 viruses somehow co-mingled [!] in the Orth-Donau facility. 27 Feb 2009 Is Baxter International taking a page from the Blackwater playbook? Just as Blackwater/Xe keep on killing to justify their multi-billion dollar contracts to provide 'security' in Iraq and Afghanistan, Baxter International is poised to make *billions* to vaccinate people against their pandemic.

Briton quarantined as killer flu spreads 26 Apr 2009 A British Airways cabin crew member was taken to hospital with flu-like symptoms yesterday afternoon after falling ill on a flight from Mexico City to Heathrow. The Health Protection Agency said it was keeping a close eye on the situation.

New Zealand quarantines 25 amid swine flu alert 26 Apr 2009 Twenty-five students and teachers in New Zealand, some with flu-like symptoms, were quarantined and tested for swine flu after returning from a trip to Mexico, officials said Sunday, as Asia stepped up surveillance for the deadly virus.

Minister: 10 NZ students likely have swine flu 26 Apr 2009 New Zealand said Sunday that 10 students "likely" have swine flu after a school trip to Mexico, as governments across Asia began quarantining those with symptoms of the deadly virus and some issued travel warnings for Mexico.

Mexico Takes Powers to Isolate Cases of Swine Flu --The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta said Saturday that it had sent a team of experts to Mexico to assist with the investigation cover-up of the outbreak.26 Apr 2009 This sprawling capital was on edge Saturday as... President [sic] Felipe Calderón published an order that would give his government emergency powers to address a deadly flu outbreak, including isolating those who have contracted the virus, inspecting the homes of affected people and ordering the cancellation of public events. The newspaper Reforma reported that President Obama, who recently visited Mexico, was escorted around Mexico City's national anthropology museum on April 16 by Felipe Solis, an archaeologist who died the next day from flu-like symptoms.

Mexico declares national emergency amid outbreak 25 Apr 2009 President [sic] Felipe Calderon declared a national emergency Saturday, authorizing federal officials to quarantine the sick, shut down public events and businesses, and take other measures to contain the virus' spread. Many in this crowded capital of 20 million are holing up or fleeing town as Mexico braces for what the World Health Organization warns could explode into a deadly global flu epidemic.

Mexico May Isolate Patients With Deadly Swine Flu Strain --The decree published Saturday says Mr. Calderón has the authority to invoke the new powers whenever the situation warrants. 26 Apr 2009 President [Bush troll] Felipe Calderón published an order Saturday that would give his government extraordinary powers to address a deadly flu epidemic, including isolating those affected by the rare virus, inspecting their homes and ordering the closure of any public events that might result in more infection... Because of the situation, the World Health Organization planned to consider raising the world pandemic flu alert to 4 from 3. Such a high level of alert -- meaning that sustained human-to-human transmission of a new virus has been detected -- has not been reached in recent years, even with the H5N1 avian flu circulating in Asia and Egypt...

Pandemic fear as killer flu spreads 26 Apr 2009 A deadly strain of flu that combines elements of swine, avian and human viruses could spread around the world after emerging simultaneously in Mexico and the United States, experts warned yesterday. Margaret Chan, director-general of the World Health Organisation, said the disease had "pandemic potential"... Up to 68 people have died from pneumonia caused by a flu-like illness in Mexico, where 1,004 suspected cases have been reported. Tests have so far confirmed that 20 of the deaths were caused by a hitherto unknown swine flu.

Texas Gov orders 37,430 courses of antiviral medications from Strategic National Stockpile --New possible case of swine flu identified in Texas 25 Apr 2009 A Texas high school where two students are confirmed to have swine flu is temporarily closing after a new possible case of swine flu was identified there, state health officials announced Saturday. Carrie Williams, a state Department of Health Services spokeswoman in Austin, confirmed Saturday that another student in Guadalupe County near San Antonio is now believed to have the illness... Gov. Rick Perry announced Saturday that because of the outbreak he was asking the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to give Texas 37,430 courses of antiviral medications from the Strategic National Stockpile to prevent the spread of swine flu.

11 more suspected swine flu cases in U.S. --Total reaches 19 26 Apr 2009 Kansas health authorities had confirmed two new cases of swine flu in their state, California has confirmed another case in Imperial County and New York City officials have identified eight probable cases, bringing the U.S. total to 19 likely cases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had previously identified six cases in San Diego and Imperial counties and two cases in Guadalupe County, Texas.

Officials: 8 NYC Students Probably Have Swine Flu --Department of Health Officials Tests 75 Students at St. Francis Preparatory School in Queens 25 Apr 2009 At least eight students at a high school in New York City probably have human swine influenza, but authorities don't know for sure whether they have the strain that has killed people in Mexico. City health officials say more than 100 students at the private St. Francis Preparatory School in Queens have come down with a fever, sore throat and other aches and pains.

Two swine flu cases confirmed in Dickinson County 25 Apr 2009 The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has confirmed two cases of swine flu involving a husband and wife in Dickinson County. KDHE officials said one had recovered and the other is still being treated, but neither was hospitalized. One of the patients had recently traveled to Mexico, flying in and out of Wichita, the KDHE said.

Deadly new flu strain erupts in Mexico, U.S. 24 Apr 2009 A strain of flu never seen before has killed up to 60 people in Mexico and also appeared in the United States, where eight people were infected but recovered, health officials said on Friday. Mexico's government said at least 20 people have died of the flu and it may also be responsible for 40 other deaths. The WHO said the virus appears to be susceptible to Roche AG's flu drug Tamiflu, also known as oseltamivir, but not to older flu drugs such as amantadine. [Lucky Rumsfeld!]

Swine Flu May Be Named Event of International Concern 25 Apr 2009 The World Health Organization is set to declare the deadly swine flu virus outbreak in Mexico and the U.S. a global concern, potentially prompting travel advisories, said a person familiar with the matter. An emergency committee of the WHO in Geneva will declare the outbreak "a public health event of international concern" in a teleconference that began at 4 p.m. today, said the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the meeting is confidential.

Outbreak in Mexico, U.S. tied to new swine flu --Source of unique virus a mystery; CDC expects more cases 24 Apr 2009 The unique strain of swine flu found in seven people in California and Texas has been connected to the deadly flu that has broken out in Mexico, killing as many as 61 people. The strain has never been seen before and is raising fears of a possible pandemic across North America. The World Health Organization said the virus that killed at least 12 of the victims in Mexico had the same genetic structure as an outbreak discovered in California. [See: Flu 'Oddities'.]

Navy Experimenting With Flu at Mexican Border --Mexico Shuts Schools Amid Deadly Flu Outbreak 25 Apr 2009 Mexican officials, scrambling to control a swine flu outbreak that has killed at least 16 people and possibly dozens more in recent weeks... The unusual strain this year was noticed, said Dr. Anne Schuchat, director of respiratory diseases the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only because the agency was trying out a new diagnostic test at a Navy laboratory and doing more testing than usual through a new Border Infectious Disease Surveillance Project along the Mexican border. [See: The U.S.-Mexico Border Infectious Disease Surveillance Project: Establishing Bi-national Border Surveillance (cdc.gov)]

Possible Swine Flu Outbreak At NYC Prep School --Department of Health Officials Testing 75 Students At St. Francis Preparatory School In Queens 24 Apr 2009 New York City health officials say that about 75 students at a Queens high school have fallen ill with flu-like symptoms and testing is under way to rule out the strain of swine flu that has killed dozens in Mexico. The Health Department's Dr. Don Weiss said Friday that a team of agency doctors and investigators were dispatched to the private St. Francis Preparatory School the previous day after students reported fever, sore throat, cough, aches and pains.

Mexico flu deaths raise fears of global epidemic --Unique virus connected to cases in Calif. and Texas; source still a mystery 24 Apr 2009 Mexico shut down schools, museums, libraries and state-run theaters across its overcrowded capital Friday in hopes of containing a swine flu outbreak that authorities say killed at least 20 people -- and perhaps dozens more. World health authorities worried openly that the strange new virus could become a global epidemic. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said tests show some of the Mexico victims died from the same new strain of swine flu that sickened eight people in Texas and California. Of the 14 samples tested from Mexico, seven were matches, said the CDC's acting director Dr. Richard Besser.

'Laboratory testing showed that the virus does not match any known flu strains.' In California and Texas, 5 New Swine Flu Cases 24 Apr 2009 Government scientists have identified five more people who have been infected with swine flu, apparently confirming suspicions that the unusual strain of the respiratory infection is spreading from person to person, federal health officials said yesterday. Three new cases were found in California and two in Texas, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to seven, officials at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta said... Genetic analysis of the virus indicates it is highly unusual: It is a hybrid that resulted from a [Fort Detrick?] combination of four different viruses.'

Troops Could Be Sent to Border --Under $350M plan, National Guard would be aimed at drug war 24 Apr 2009 The Pentagon and Homeland Security Department are developing contingency plans to send National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexican border under a $350 million initiative that would expand the U.S. military's role in [fomenting] the drug war, according to Obama administration officials.

In 2002, Military Agency Warned Against 'Torture' --Extreme Duress Could Yield Unreliable Information, It Said 24 Apr 2009 The military agency that provided advice on harsh interrogation techniques for use against terrorism suspects referred to the application of extreme duress as "torture" in a July 2002 document sent to the Pentagon's chief lawyer and warned that it would produce "unreliable information." "The unintended consequence of a U.S. policy that provides for the torture of prisoners is that it could be used by our adversaries as justification for the torture of captured U.S. personnel," says the document, an unsigned two-page attachment to a memo by the military's Joint Personnel Recovery Agency. Parts of the attachment, obtained in full by The Washington Post, were quoted in a Senate report on harsh interrogation released this week. [Oops! Looks like the PentaPost will have to stop calling torture 'enhanced interrogation techniques' because the Pentagon itself calls torture torture. --LRP]

Memo From the Joint Personnel Recovery Agency 24 Apr 2009

Cheney Requests Release of 2 CIA Reports on Interrogations 25 Apr 2009 Former vice president [sic] Richard B. Cheney is asking for the release of two CIA reports in his bid to marshal evidence that coercive interrogation tactics such as waterboarding helped thwart terrorist plots, according to documents released yesterday by the National Archives and Records Administration.

UK High Court demands U.S. torture documents 22 Apr 2009 The chief justice of the British High Court on Wednesday gave the British government one week to obtain the U.S. release of classified information about the alleged torture of a British resident [Binyam Mohamed] who'd been detained at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The court indicated that it would issue its own order if the government doesn't respond or justify why continued secrecy is warranted.

DoD to carry out 'military missions' during pandemic, WMD attack

DoD to 'augment civilian law' during pandemic or bioterror attack

 Global Research Articles by Lori Price

~ Centre for Reseach on Globalization ~

aRtviD: Moby & MC Aynzli - 'Alice'

Standard warning: Scenes depicted here may be disturbing to some

"This video mixes scenes of discrimination and violence. This could insinuate 'Alice' as a personification of 'Malice', one of the characteristics studied in this video."

Evening w/ Susan Galleymore: Mothers Speak About War and Terror

An Evening with Military Mom Susan Galleymore
MotherSpeak: NYC Book Launch

Just in time for Mother's Day, a moving portrait of what it means to be a mother in time of war

Long Time Passing book cover

When: Thursday, May 7th, 6:30pm

Where: American Friends Service Comm. 15 Rutherford Pl, NYC 10003

Who: Susan Galleymore, the mother of a U.S. soldier, made international headlines by taking the extraordinary and dangerous step of traveling to Iraq to visit her son stationed on a military base in the so-called Sunni Triangle, north of Baghdad.

What she found in Iraq challenged her to continue her journey interviewing mothers in war zones including Iraq, Israel and the West Bank, Lebanon, Syria, and Afghanistan—as well as in the U.S. These powerful first-person stories offer dramatic insight into the impact of war on mothers, families, communities, and cultures.

Long Time Passing: Mothers Speak About War and Terror gets to the heart of extreme social experiences—war and warriors, mothers and children, communities and cultures—and explores the meaning of courage, fear, and leadership.

Special Guest MC: Jeremy Scahill, award-wining independent journalist and author of NY Times Bestseller Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Army. He reports frequently for Democracy Now! and has spent extensive time reporting from Iraq and Yugoslavia. His writing and reporting is available at RebelReports.com.

* Rita Dougherty, mother of a Army Lieutenant, West Point trained nuclear engineer, who was badly injured in the bombing of a Stryker. Rita has stayed at her son's side every step of the way during his on-going recovery to ensure the quality of his medical care. (Rita's story is shared in the book.)

* Dr. Donny George, Visiting Professor Stony Brook University and Former Director of the Iraq Museum. He wrote the foreword for the book The Looting of the Iraq Museum, Baghdad: The Lost Legacy of Ancient Mesopotamia.

* Elik Elhanan, Combatants for Peace - a group of Israeli and Palestinian individuals actively involved in the cycle of violence in the area. He is the son of Nurit Peled Elhanan who shared the 2001 Sakhorov Prize for Freedom of Speech with Palestinian father Izzat Ghazzawi. (Nurit's story is shared in the book.)

* Alissa Torres is a 9/11 widow whose son was born soon after her husband died and author of American Widow. She is a member of September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows.

* Ehab Al Kuttub was an interpreter for the US Army in Iraq. He shares his compelling story of how he came to the US, his relationship with American troops, and the dynamics of being an Iraqi with a foot on both sides of the conflict.

Book signing with Susan Galleymore follows this FREE event

What They're Saying About Long Time Passing:

Eloquently presents the universal fear, sorrow, and suffering experienced by mothers whose lives have been profoundly affected by war." —Mary Tillman, co-author of Boots on the Ground at Dusk: My Tribute to Pat Tillman and mother of football star Pat Tillman killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan.

"A heartfelt and gut-wrenching account—a must read for anyone wanting to understand the effects of modern war." —Andrew J. Bacevich, Professor of International Relations at Boston University and author of The Limits of Power: The End of American Exceptionalism. His son, Andrew, was killed in the Iraq war.

For more information and to order the book please visit: mothersspeakaboutwarandterror.org

Published by Pluto Press (UK) and distributed by Palgrave Macmillan (US)

~ Independent Media Center ~

Musical Innerlube: The Residents - 'songs for swinging larvae'

Study: Economic concerns to trigger anti-Semitism in US, Germany

New research behavior tool that predicts 'feeling trends' concerning economy reveals developing wave of potentially violent anti-Semitism in US, Germany

25 Jul, 2006 / Israel Money

A new behavior-research tool, Affective Encryption Analysis, has uncovered a dramatic trend in both the US and Germany—a developing wave of potentially violent anti-Semitism.

Affective Encryption Analysis, which was recently used to predict the outcome of the 2008 US Presidential election, uses naturalistic research methods to measure the way in which “feeling-trends” develop over time. It then forecasts the likely behavioral outcomes.
Using Affective Encryption Analysis, media psychologist, Dr. James N. Herndon, of Media Psychology Affiliates, led an investigation to predict long-term “feeling-trends” concerning the economy.
Population samples in both the US and Germany were chosen as indicators of both US and European feelings toward economic conditions.
“Our results showed far greater feelings of dread about the economic future than we currently find in mainstream survey research,” stated Dr. Herndon. “In fact, almost 70 percent of our sample expressed a precipitously declining sense of economic stability. This was especially strong among the lower-middle-class,” he added.

'Scapegoating Israel'
“What we did not expect was a widespread association of economic problems with support for Israel. This belief appears to be growing exponentially in both the US and in Germany,” he said.
“We currently have worryingly low rates of savings and capital investment, combined with systemic unemployment and an ever-increasing spiral of debt and inflation,” said Dr. Herndon.
“If current trends are left unchecked, we believe that by late 2007, a feeling of economic desperation will begin to overtake large sectors of the lower-middle-class in the US, as well as the welfare-dependent classes in Germany,” he warned.
“Our results strongly suggest that this will provide the emotional trigger for the scapegoating of Jews, toward whom feelings in our sample were unexpectedly negative, and often violent.”

~ more... ~

Campaigners monitored by civil servants

• Intelligence on climate groups passed to police
• 'Orwellian' approach condemned by Liberty

Matthew Taylor
1 May, 2009

Government officials have been monitoring environmental campaign groups and then passing intelligence on to the police, according to documents seen by the Guardian.

An internal risk report from the Department for Transport reveals that a unit referred to as the comms directorate ­"continuously monitor[ed]" peaceful protest groups opposed to the expansion of Heathrow airport and then briefed detectives about their findings.

The disclosure is the latest evidence of a wide-ranging crackdown on environmental campaign groups and has been condemned by MPs and civil liberty groups.

Earlier this month it emerged that government officials had handed confidential police intelligence about environmental activists to the energy giant E.ON ahead of a peaceful demonstration at Kingsnorth, the proposed site of a new coal-fired power station in north Kent.

Last week the Guardian revealed how undercover police were running a network of hundreds of informants inside protest organisations who secretly feed them intelligence in return for cash.

The latest documents, released under the Freedom of Information Act, reveal how the comms directorate at the DfT was monitoring campaign groups in the consultation period leading up to the announcement about the planned expansion of Heathrow airport.

A typical entry in February 2008 states: "Strength of opposition to expansion at Heathrow leads to direct action during the consultation period." Under measures in place it states: "Comms directorate to continually monitor protest groups and brief staff/police accordingly."

Another entry in May 2008 states: "Strength of opposition to expansion at Heathrow leads to direct action before and around time of ministerial considerations thereby delaying final policy decisions."

The document rates the "inherent risk" as medium or high and states: "Comms directorate to continuously monitor protest groups and brief staff/police accordingly."

The Liberal Democrat justice spokesman, David Howarth, said it was "extraordinary" that civil servants were monitoring peaceful environmental campaigners and then passing information to police.

~ more... ~

'They weren't told they were being fed Quaker Oats laced with radioactive substances'

Shattered Illusions: Ten Things about the Natural World You Thought You Knew (But Didn't)

By Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor

4 May, 2009

(NaturalNews) People tend to think that the things they believe are true. And even when they're terrible wrong, they still believe their fictions as if they were facts.

It's a healthy exercise to have your false beliefs challenged by reality, so today I'm doing my best to shatter ten false beliefs most people hold about the natural world -- food, animals, nature and so on.

Read the list below and see how many you used to believe.

#1) Quaker Oats was started by Quakers

Ummm, not really. In fact, the company has nothing to do with Quakers. It was started in Pennsylvania in 1901 when there were lots of Quakers around, mostly due to the fact that Quakers were known as being honest.

But Quaker Oats isn't exactly honest. Today, it's actually owned by PepsiCo, and in the 1950s, Quaker Oats, Harvard University and MIT researchers conducted experiments on human children using radioactive elements to trace the flow of nutrients through their bodies. The children were invited to be part of a "special science club," but they weren't told they were being fed Quaker Oats laced with radioactive substances. Side effects of radioactive exposure include skin cell mutations and skin cancer.

When parents found out about the experiments, they sued, and Quaker Oats was eventually forced to pay out $1.85 million, but the case wasn't settled until decades later -- 1997, actually. It's all detailed in the book The State Boy's Rebellion by Michael D'Antonio. (http://www.amazon.com/State-Boys-Re...)

MIT news: http://tech.mit.edu/V117/N65/bferna...
(Note how arrogant this MIT news story is, implying it was okay to experiment on the children because the levels of radioactivity were so low.)

Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quaker...

~ more... ~

Smash EDO continue anti-death merchant action

McDonald's and banks among those implicated by anti-war group

27 Apr, 2009

By Naomi Loomes [The Argus]

Protesters have drawn up a list of banks and companies they will target during an anti-arms trade protest next week.

Thousands of demonstrators are planning to descend on Brighton and Hove during the May Bank Holiday for what they describe as a “mass street party against, war, greed and militarism”.

The protest was originally planned as part of an ongoing campaign against EDO MBM/ITT, the factory on Home Farm Road in Moulsecoomb, which makes arms components.

But since the G20 events in London, increasing numbers of anarchist and anti-capitalist groups from around Britain have been planning to widen the scope of the demonstration.

This week the group behind the protest, Smash EDO, have published a map of 35 city centre businesses they say have supplied or invested in ITT, including McDonald’s, American Express, BP and Barclays Bank.

~ more... ~

Another G20 policeman in trouble as May Day looms

Human rights watchers on high alert as police prepare for protests in London and Brighton
By Jack Bremer

30 Apr, 2009

The ramifications of the policing of the G20 protest on April 1 continue to reverberate in London with the resignation of a Metropolitan Police officer who posted "inappropriate comments" on a website.

The officer was not named by acting Deputy Commissioner Tom Godwin when he made the announcement today. Nor was the precise nature of the officer's online offence.

But it follows the disciplining or temporary suspension of three other policemen as a result of their behaviour on or around April 1 - one for seeming to strike the newsvendor Ian Tomlinson, who died later the same day; another for striking a woman who was attending a vigil for Tomlinson on April 2; the third, a north London constable called Rob Ward, for using the social networking site Facebook to announce that he planned to use the excuse of the G20 protest to "bash some long-haired hippies".

[ ... ]

Human rights observers are now on high alert for May Day protests planned in London tomorrow, Friday, May 1, and in Brighton on Bank Holiday Monday, May 4.

Demonstrators on May 1 are expected to gather at Clerkenwell Green at midday and then march to Trafalgar Square for a rally at 4.30pm. But there is also talk of a protest group known as the Space Hijackers planning to demonstrate outside the Bank of England - the scene of the attack on Ian Tomlinson - in protest at what they see as Britain's gradual slip into a "surveillance state".

Details of the Brighton gathering on May 4 are less clear. It is advertised by Smash EDO as a "street party against war and greed" but the timing and route of the demonstration and the anticipated numbers are not yet known.

~ more... ~

May Day protests turn ugly as violent clashes erupt on the streets of Brighton

By Daily Mail Reporter

5 May, 2009

A May Day protest descended into violence yesterday as anti-war demonstrators clashed with police in Brighton, where thousands of visitors had flocked to enjoy the bank holiday.

Three police officers were injured after scuffles with mask-wearing activists who organised a march through the city's streets. One man was arrested.

Police and demonstrators face off as May Day protests turned ugly

At one point activists climbed up scaffolding onto the roof of a Barclays bank branch and unfurled a banner as part of the protest against an arms factory in the city.

~ more... ~

‘Mayday! Mayday!’ Smash EDO Brighton: anti-war march clashes with police

Josh Jones

4 May, 2009

Hundreds of people from all over the country met in Brighton today to protest against the war, capitalism, and the arms trade. Organised by the Smash EDO movement, which for years has been campaigning against the EDO/ITT weapons factory based in Brighton, the protest started off very peacefully and remained generally positive throughout the day.

Mounted police outside McDonalds

After meeting by the Palace Pier, the protest moved through the centre of Brighton cheering and chanting. Four young anarchists climbed to the top of the Barclays building, where they hung a banner reading “Arms Dealers Out Of Brighton’. Barclays is notorious for being one of the banks most complicit in the international arms trade. The people responsible for the banner were welcomed into the crowd as heroes, and avoided arrest.

After passing peacefully past the Clock tower, down Queens Road and through North Laine, the protest clashed with police on London Road. A heavy police presence blocked part of the road outside McDonalds, and minor scuffles quickly escalated as mounted and riot police forced through crowds to protect the building. A smoke-bomb lit by protesters, combined with a push forward from mounted police, frightened shoppers and nearly split the protest in two.

From then on, the protest became a game of cat-and-mouse - although it was sometimes hard to tell who was the cat and who the mouse. Protesters managed to force back mounted police several times, while police hastily re-grouped around the protest as it moved into residential districts and through Preston Park. However, neither protesters nor police seemed to have a plan as such, and after much walking and a few minor scuffles - including the arrest of one man by riot police - the protest moved back into the town centre.

~ more... ~

From the Port Liberation Front, with love

Will they ignore us now as we try as best we can to slow down the military shipments heading out of Fort Lewis to their final destination in Afghanistan?

The other night, one of the resistors was approached by some spouses and partners of soldiers in the Stryker Brigade that is in the process of shipping out. She explained to the military wives, who are about to lose their loved ones to a far and distant land and perhaps lose them forever, why we were out there and what we were doing. They were
supportive. They were thankful. They don't want their husbands to go to Afghanistan. We don't either.

Last night, the resistance continued. Shipments started leaving Fort Lewis around 9:00pm. Scouts were located up and down the I-5 corridor. People were in position and then the HugBots – three people in robot costumes and concrete lockboxes – were unleashed in front of a convoy of Stryker vehicles on the off-ramp to Exit 137 near the Port of Tacoma. They jumped out of a van that came out of nowhere, in the midst of several cop cars and quickly locked down. The van drove off with the back doors still swinging open into the dark of the night. The HugBots spent a considerable amount of time there, although they were dragged off by the cops in a short matter of time. The fire department had to come to cut up the lockboxes and help remove them. Two street medics were at the scene the whole time while this happened and were never arrested. The HugBots ended up in jail and people are working on getting them out.

Do you know the significance of this?

~ more... ~


image from http://www.spitting-image.net

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