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Canada’s Largest Private Sector Union Endorses BDS

September 8th, 2017

Stephen Lendman

Unifor has more than 310,000 members nationwide.

At its August 18 - 20 convention in Winnipeg, it adopted a resolution, titled “Palestinian Self-Determination and the Movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanction.”

It affirms opposition to violence against civilians, along with “other human rights violations by either side in the conflict.”

It called for using BDS tactics to target “sectors of Israel’s economy and society which profit from the ongoing occupation of the OPT (occupied Palestinian territories),” adding:

“Unifor will support…BDS until such time as Israel implements a permanent ban on further settlement construction in the OPT, and enters into good faith negotiations with representatives of the Palestinian people for the purpose of establishing a viable, contiguous and truly sovereign Palestinian state.”

“The International Court of Justice has ruled that Israel’s settlements in the (OPT) violate international law (and that) Israeli settlement expansions in the OPT are an undeniable obstacle to the Israel  -  Palestine peace process.”

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Category 5 Hurricane Irma

September 8th, 2017

Stephen Lendman

Category 5 storms are the most dangerous. Hurricane Irma is the most powerful Atlantic hurricane in recorded history.

Winds approach 185 MPH, gusts exceed 215 MPH. A force this powerful will devastate any land areas struck. The human toll could be high.

Pre-dawn Wednesday, Irma made landfall in the northeastern Caribbean, the full impact still to be felt as this is written. Area officials warned about the coming onslaught.

At around 1:47AM, the hurricane’s eye passed over Barbuda. Its forecast trajectory has it heading toward Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Cuba before likely moving toward Florida’s east or west coasts by the weekend.

Governor Rick Scott declared a state-wide emergency in all Florida counties. The southern most Keys would be first affected. People in coastal areas should prepare to evacuate to inland locations.

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Putin and South Korean President Meet

September 7th, 2017

Stephen Lendman

For weeks after assuming office in May, South Korean President Moon Jae-in urged improved ties with Pyongyang, saying:

“I’m pro-US, but now South Korea should adopt diplomacy in which it can discuss a US request and say no to the Americans.”

Ahead of the early July Hamburg G20 summit, he expressed willingness to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un “any time, any place, if the conditions are met, and if it will provide an opportunity to transform the tension and confrontation on the Korean peninsula.”

He called US policy toward Pyongyang flawed and dangerous. “More desirable in international relations is to pursue a multifaceted approach” instead of hostile rhetoric and confrontational policies, he stressed.

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Who Rules America? The Power Elite in the Time of Trump

September 7th, 2017

James Petras

Introduction

In the last few months, several competing political, economic and military sectors - linked to distinct ideological and ethnic groups - have clearly emerged at the centers of power.

We can identify some of the key competing and interlocking directorates of the power elite:

1. Free marketers, with the ubiquitous presence of the ‘Israel First’ crowd.

2. National capitalists, linked to rightwing ideologues.

3. Generals, linked to the national security and the Pentagon apparatus, as well as defense industry.

4. Business elites, linked to global capital. This essay attempts to define the power wielders and evaluate their range of power and its impact.

The Economic Power Elite: Israel-Firsters and Wall Street CEO’s

‘Israel Firsters’ dominate the top economic and political positions within the Trump regime and, interestingly, are among the Administration’s most vociferous opponents. These include: the Federal Reserve Chairwoman, Janet Yellen, as well as her Vice-Chair, Stanley Fischer, an Israeli citizen and former (sic) Governor of the Bank of Israel.

Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and an Orthodox Jew, acts as his top adviser on Middle East Affairs. Kushner, a New Jersey real estate mogul, set himself up as the archenemy of the economic nationalists in the Trump inner circle. He supports every Israeli power and land grab in the Middle East and works closely with David Friedman, US Ambassador to Israel (and fanatical supporter of the illegal Jewish settlements) and Jason Greenblatt, Special Representative for International negotiations. With three Israel-Firsters determining Middle East policy, there is not even a fig leaf of balance.

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Putin at BRICS Summit

September 7th, 2017

Stephen Lendman

His straight talk is always refreshing - polar opposite double-talk from US leaders and most congressional members.

At the conclusion of the BRICS summit in Xiamen, China, he answered questions candidly during a news conference. He always says what he means and means what he says.

Nations have the right to determine the number of diplomatic offices they permit other countries to have. They can reduce the numbers at their discretion.

“It is another matter altogether that they have done this (to Russia) in a way that was absolutely uncivil,” Putin stressed.

No one has the right to seize the diplomatic properties of other nations. In response to the seizure of its San Francisco consulate, along with annex buildings in Washing and New York, Putin said he’ll file suit, seeking their lawful return.

In Nicaragua v. United States(1986), the International Court of Justice ruled against Washington for breaching international law and violating its sovereignty by supporting Contra death squads in the country, along with mining its waters and operating illegally in its airspace.

Washington rejected the ruling, refused to pay damages, and claimed the court had no “jurisdiction (or) competence” to render a judgment.

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Typical Deception by the New York Times

September 7th, 2017

Eric Zuesse,

Here’s a common example of authentically fake-news journalism, the type that’s pervasive in the U.S. — not something like “Saddam’s WMD,” which changed history, but the ordinary everyday type of lies by the American press, being mixed-in with truths so as not to be 100% fictitious, but just enough truths so as to gild the lily of lies that all of the ‘news’media, right and left, glorify, in a bipartisan way, as ‘Truth’, which is the most normal type of American ‘news’-reporting of all — bipartisan, while still being extremely partisan against truth, which is carefully (and assiduously) hidden:

On Wednesday, August 30th, the New York Times headlined "U.N. Peacekeepers in Lebanon Get Stronger Inspection Powers for Hezbollah Arms”, and opened by saying:

The United Nations Security Council on Wednesday voted to renew the peacekeeping mission in Lebanon for another year after addressing American and Israeli complaints that the force was ignoring a Hezbollah arms buildup near Israel’s border.

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Netanyahu and Wife Face Possible Indictment

September 6th, 2017

Stephen Lendman

Netanyahu faces possible indictment for bribery, fraud, breach of trust, and money laundering - discussed in an earlier article.

His close confidant, Ari Harow, turned state’s witness against him. A gag order in place until September 17 prevents information about the case from coming out.

Police recommended indicting Netanyahu. If charges against him are made, state prosecutors will decide whether to hold him accountable. Based on what’s known, there’s plenty about his shady dealings to prosecute and convict.

Last year, Israeli State Comptroller Joseph Shapira reported evidence of significant Netanyahu financial improprieties, saying a criminal investigation is warranted.

Full story »

US, China and Russia Respond to North Korea’s Sunday Nuclear Test

September 5th, 2017

Stephen Lendman

America’s response was expected, Trump tweeting:

“North Korea has conducted a major Nuclear Test. Their words and actions continue to be very hostile and dangerous to the United States…..”

“North Korea is a rogue nation which has become a great threat and embarrassment to China, which is trying to help but with little success.”

“South Korea is finding, as I have told them, that their talk of appeasement with North Korea will not work, they only understand one thing!”

As usual, he’s dead wrong. Washington poses the only regional threat, not Pyongyang. Instead of trying to resolve contentious issues diplomatically, he chooses hostility and threats instead - accomplishing nothing but heightening tensions more than already.

Treasury Secretary Mnuchin said he’s preparing tough new US sanctions on Pyongyang, aiming to cut off “all trade and other business.”

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Twitter Targets RT

September 5th, 2017

Stephen Lendman

US-led Western war on press freedom may abolish it altogether. Journalists covering protests are targeted - for videotaping and reporting on police harshness.

Challenging America’s phony war on terror is hazardous. So is exposing its imperial high crimes. Neocons in Washington consider WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange a terrorist. He’s a journalist publishing material major media ignore.

Reporters and commentators providing press agent services for America’s domestic and geopolitical agenda are well-paid and rewarded in other ways.

Independent truth-telling is risky. So is opposing US hostility toward Russia and other sovereign independent states.

RT and Sputnik News are criticized for doing what journalists are supposed to do - their jobs.

Full story »

Macron’s War on Labor

September 5th, 2017

Stephen Lendman

On Thursday, French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe and Labor Minister Muriel Penicaud unveiled what Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire called “the mother of all (labor) reform” plans.

Its 36 measures in five separate decrees are long on business-friendly policies, dismally short on anything benefitting workers.

Macron’s popularity plunged from 62% after his May electoral triumph to 40%, according to an Ifop poll released last Sunday.

He fell from grace because of unpopular neoliberal spending cuts and wanting business more empowered to negotiate hours, pay and benefits, slash the number of worker committees, and limit penalties for wrongful dismissals - without union involvement, disempowering them, the gold standard for business, the worst one for workers.

Full story »

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