The way to win is to attack the opposition’s civilian population

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August 6, 1945, the United States used a massive, atomic weapon against Hiroshima, Japan. This atomic bomb, the equivalent of 20,000 tons of TNT, flattened the city, killing tens of thousands of civilians. While Japan was still trying to comprehend this devastation three days later, the United States struck again, this time, on Nagasaki. ( 9th August 1945)

68 years on from Hiroshima, The Nuclear Madness Remains

 

The 69th anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, reminds me of Chomsky’s observation that the way to win a war is to attack the other side’s civilian population … it worked in Japan, and (particularly at the moment) it is obviously the strategy.

More than ever before, we are being brought face to face with the horrors of the bloodshed.  The genocidal intent of the Israelis in Gaza, the barbarism of ISIS in Iraq, the murderous gas pipeline power struggle in Syria, the little reported ethnic and cultural ‘cleansing’ of the Donbass region of Ukraine and many unreported massacres in the Congo, Sudan and more.

Chomsky illustrates the effectiveness (and hypocrisy) of the strategy in recent piece about downing of the passenger plane in the Ukraine:

Every literate person, and certainly every editor and commentator instantly recalled another case when a plane was shot down with comparable loss of life: Iran Air 655 with 290 killed, including 66 children, shot down in Iranian airspace in a clearly identified commercial air route. The crime was not carried out “with U.S. support,” nor has its agent ever been uncertain. It was the guided-missile cruiser USS Vincennes, operating in Iranian waters in the Persian Gulf….It was a major factor in Iran’s recognition that it could not fight on any longer, according to historian Dilip Hiro. 

http://mwcnews.net/focus/analysis/44265-outrage.html

Naturally, if it is ‘their’ forces, it is described as a massacre and an outrage, but if the killing is from ‘our side’, it is simply collateral damage, unreported or reported as if legitimate.

This is not new, as Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed details in his lecture ‘The Hidden Holocaust’, reposted below.  Historically, this was the pattern of colonisation.  Millions of indigenous peoples were systematically exterminated and their cultures erased.  The remaining population was cowed and of necessity compliant.

But the killing continues.  It may be overt as in Gaza, Donetsk or Iraq… or it may be hidden in the statistics about ever increasing global poverty or the million children who die every year from Malaria or from the unrecorded effects of sanctions or from polluted environments or the people dispossessed of their land by corporations or poverty wages or by removing social security or from climate change.  None of these need be happening.

Nowadays, colonisation is less about occupying a land mass and more about controlling the economy. For example, in order to eradicate the socialism of Allende and impose strict free market-oriented neoliberal economic reforms, the US-backed Pinochet’s armies killed or ‘disappeared’ at least 3,000.  These were representatives from the cultural world, intellectuals, university staff and students, forcing 200,000 Chileans into exile – up to 80,000 people were interned and as many as 30,000 were tortured during the time Pinochet was in government.  The proposed trade deals, TTIP, TPP and TISA are the latest way to achieve the same, by setting corporate rule above national governments, to the detriment of ordinary people and threat to the most vulnerable.

But in addition to all of this, the other side’s ‘massacres’ are exploited to persuade populations that their side are the ‘good guys’  and if required, they should go and fight…  Pearl Harbour and 9/11 spring to mind.  Jim Grundy writes of the start of WW1:

A hundred years ago today the most advanced military machine in the world, the Germany Army, invaded its neighbours.  Within 48 hours, the first massacres of civilians took place, not by accident but as a matter of deliberate policy. Thousands were to be murdered in the coming weeks.  British public opinion, that had not been sympathetic to Serbia after the Sarajevo assassinations, was appalled by the stories of mass murder committed against a defenceless population.  The British State might have gone to war to protect the European balance of power, its own imperial interests but the reason for war was clear to most British people – the avoidance of the fate meted out by an aggressive military power to women and children here at home.

 

Massacres and atrocities are brilliant tools for galvanising ordinary people into the required behaviour…  Capitulation to stop the killing, compliance on the part of the oppressed and public support for conscription, surveillance and draconian security clamp-downs.  The global power elites need to convince us because they cannot further their own interests, without our being frightened or fooled into backing them.  Don’t believe the hypocritical and sanctimonious talk about the outrage of killing civilians.  It is palpably untrue.

As Chomsky says – Israel could “defend” itself by withdrawing from territories it illegally occupies.

When the powers-that-be talk about security, it is not for you and me .. the security they mean is security for the rich and powerful to stay rich and powerful.

Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed : The_Hidden_Holocaust

 

Political analyst on security, conflict and global crisis. Director of Institute for Policy Research & Development, London. Author of “The London Bombings: An Independent Inquiry” (Duckworth, 2006) and “The War on Truth: 9/11, Disinformation and the Anatomy of Terrorism” (Arris, Olive Branch, 2005).

The Secret Deal that Threatens the Food on Your Plate

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A controversial trade deal between the EU and the US is now being negotiated. The biggest in history, it has the power to affect every part of the food chain.  Untangling the EU-US trade talks : What are the big concerns for food & farming?  What might be the consequences for our food and farming?

The Secret Deal that Threatens the Food on Your Plate

Published on Mar 19, 2014

 

Why is TTIP more than a trade agreement?

Support the Firefighters on 10th July 2014 .. and in perpetuity.

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Screen Shot 2014-07-09 at 16.56.55

 

 

Who in their right minds would think that Firefighters should be working until 60?  What more needs to be said?  And actually, this government doesn’t either, in spite of what they say.  This is just a cynical ploy to reduce Firefighters’ pensions.

The FBU say:

“Firefighting is a dangerous and physically demanding job which requires specific fitness standards.

“It is obvious to everyone that it is more and more difficult to meet those standards in your 50s compared to your 20s.

”Firefighters in that position face a stark choice of being sacked or losing half their pension.

“This is outrageous and all the claims that the government values our firefighters have been exposed as an utter lie.

“They need to wake up to the fact that we are not going away and we will be continuing our fight for pension justice.”

The government in N Ireland recently offered firefighters a retirement age of 55, and the FBU says this demonstrates that the Westminster government’s position is not justified by evidence or lack of affordability.

The FBU recently launched a legal challenge against the government’s proposals, saying they have received legal advice that reducing the pensions available to firefighters by different amounts depending on when they retire after 55 amounts to age discrimination.

In addition to this scandal, the UK public are seeing fire stations closed and the valuable land on which they stand on being sold off to property developers.

Furthermore, there are draconian cuts both in Firefighters and Appliances.  For example, Nancy Platts, Labour’s parliamentary candidate in Brighton Kemptown & Peacehaven, has been campaigning against local cuts which will see frontline services reduced and, according to the consultation document, will increase the number of fire deaths in the city.

Simon Herbert, a local firefighter and FBU official said,

“I believe that the public have been misled on both the consultation process and also the cost of keeping the fifth fire engine in the City.  Cutting a fire engine that responds to over 1,000 emergency incidents a year and enables firefighters to save lives and protect the public merely to save money that could be saved in other areas, is not acceptable.  The Fire Service’s own documents show that cutting 24 firefighters and removing a fire engine would save approximately £900,000.  This amount of money although large can easily be made in other areas or by looking to share back office resources across the south east region.  I would expect all other avenues to have been explored before public safety is put at risk.”

What effect will this have on the residents of Brighton and Hove?

  • Cut 25% of Firefighter jobs from the City of Brighton and Hove
  • Take away a Fire Engine that attends over 1000 (Hove) or 2000 (Brighton) calls a year
  • Leave high rise properties at risk without sufficient resources to attack high rise fires quickly
  • Replace the City’s Ariel Ladder Platform with an inferior appliance

Support the Firefighters as they fight on all fronts to protect the public and themselves from the actions of this cynical government and their supporters on regional Fire Authorities.

 

Can we sue the Government?

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First posted 23.06.14 by Julijuxtaposed

 

Can we sue our government?  I don’t know how feasible this is.  There is no research in this post.  This is because, not only am I no expert – not on anything actually (though I think I have more inkling than I’m allowing in this post) – but I am sensible enough to know that I could research until the cows come home and it will still come down to the will and authoritative arguments of those who are actually qualified – and maybe a jury.  This is just a layperson putting an idea out and into the ether.

Unless one lives on another planet, is one of the deliberately deaf and blind Alright-Jacks or the I’ll-only-pay-for-mine Brigade, one can’t fail to register the growing inequality of treatment, wealth/prosperity and opportunity perpetuated by this Government.  For those with eyes to see, the march towards a fascistic system is clearly in view.  With mass subjugation by serfdom, corporate control and media-politico doublethink, many woken people have been rightly growing increasingly concerned for some time.  And angry.  So very angry.  And so justifiably so.

We have no mechanism as a citizenry, to hold our governments officially to account, aside from elections.  They fixed parliamentary terms with no counter-balance to get rid of an administration before a General Election and tell us they think an election every five years is sufficient, as though we should think ourselves lucky to get that.  They don’t even think we need a proper power of recall when it comes to individual MPs!  It’s just not good enough, is it?

Can’t We, the People, bring a class action against an entire government?  Here, through our own British Justice system.  Obviously I have this government in my mind, specifically but, absent the parliamentary will to write such a vehicle into Law as would rebalance our power, I’d also like us to try and set a precedent.  Let’s face it: this Coalition is not the first and, unfortunately, probably won’t be the last to abuse us through abuse of office.  Can’t we sue them for:

Breach of contract/merchantable quality
Reckless endangerment
Negligence/Malpractice
Extortion/Slavery
Fraud/Insider trading/Accepting bribes
Fiduciary incompetence
Oppression of legal, human rights

Obviously we can’t sue them just because we don’t like government policy, albeit that we don’t like government policy.  It has to be grounded in more than mere opposition to political colour or the failed aspirations of a manifesto, particularly when the respondents are a Coalition.  As I said, I’m no lawyer or constitutional expert but surely there must be at least one valid charge on that list, (whether or not they are all correct legal terms) or a charge I haven’t thought of, that entitles us to seek criminal or civil justice within our own legal system.  Scare the pants off ‘em I say!  The whole damned lot of them!  Surely there is a range of ‘expert witnesses’ on whom we could call and there must be organisations, lawyers, economists, anthropologists and other relevant academics who could help us build a case?  Perhaps We, the People, need our own version of the Investor State Dispute Settlement…  ;-)