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Monthly Archives: August, 2002

Refugees face starvation

In 1975, after the death of Franco, Spain withdrew from its Western Sahara colony. It was promptly annexed by Morocco against the wishes of (at least part of) the indigenous population, leading to a decades long guerilla war. During the course of this war, some 155,000 people fled to the borders with Algeria, which is where they’re still living in refugee camps. These camps are wholly dependent on humanitarian aid provided via the UN world Food Programme, which is now struggling to get the funds needed to do so, according to a report from AllAfrica.

Since 1991 an UN sponsored ceasefire has been in effect between Morocco and Polisario Front and since then the UN has been trying to hld an referendum on the future of the Western Sahara. Read more about the history of the Western Sahara here.

“Gentiles in Aaliyah have always persecuted Jewish people, I don’t know if you’re one of them or not, but…”. Jackie Mason talks to CNN as to why he had a Palestinian comic fired.

Poll shows free speech support down

Support for the First Amendment has eroded significantly since Sept. 11 and nearly half of Americans now think the constitutional amendment on free speech goes too far in the rights it guarantees…

The survey was performed by the (supposedly) non-partisan First Amendment Foundation. A PDF of the report, State of the First Amendment 2002, is available here.

Via Slashdot

Earth Summit

Booby Traps at Rio + 10

by Naomi Klein

On August 24, police even attacked a candlelight “freedom of expression march,” held to protest these and other mass arrests. The spontaneously organized march was headed to a downtown prison, but before the crowd of 1,000 local and international activists had walked a block, riot police surrounded them and barricaded the road. Without warning, stun grenades were fired at the marchers, injuring three.

The World Summit on Sustainable Development isn’t going to save the world; it merely offers an exaggerated mirror of it. In the gourmet restaurants of Sandton, delegates are literally dining out on their concern for the poor. Meanwhile, outside the gates, poor people are being hidden away, assaulted and imprisoned for what has become the iconic act of resistance in an unsustainable world: refusing to disappear. [read more]


The State machinery of intimidation and misinformation

JOHANNESBURG 27 August – With only four days to go before the showdown in Sandton, the lines between protesters and the State have become increasingly apparent. Not only in the form of police repression – which according to many international anti-globalisation protesters has bypassed the draconian standards of Seattle, Québec and Genoa – but more sinisterly within the mainstream media as well. The corporate media has been working hand-in-hand with the intelligence agencies and other government officials in circulating untruths and fabrications aimed at demobilising mass movements rejecting the neoliberal agenda of WSSD and at justifying excessive use of force, unjustified arrests, torture and a flawed legal system. [read more]

Greenpeace finds American wanted for Bhopal tragedy. (Guardian)

‘The former head of Union Carbide, Warren Anderson, who faces homicide charges in India in connection with more than 14,000 deaths following leaks from the company’s pesticides plant in Bhopal in 1984, has been tracked down to his luxury home in the Hamptons on Long Island, New York. ‘

‘Mr Anderson was served with a copy of a warrant for his arrest by an environmental campaigner and moves are now under way to bring him to India to face trial.’

Palestinian: Stop Suicide Bombings
Yehiyeh, a retired general, was appointed interior minister in June in a Cabinet reshuffle, taking charge of Palestinian security forces. Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat had held the post until then.

In the interview, Yehiyeh said that “suicide attacks are contrary to the Palestinian tradition, against international law and harm the Palestinian people.”

Bed art promotes ‘safe sex’. (BBC) ‘A young couple are to spend a week in bed in the window of a London art gallery to reinforce the importance of safe sexual practice in the fight against sexually transmitted disease. ‘

US presses Africa to take GM foods. (Guardian) ‘The US was accused yesterday of putting intense pressure on United Nations organisations, the European Union and individual countries to support the export of GM food aid to six African countries facing severe hunger in the coming months. ‘

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