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11.18 How Extreme Weather Is Shrinking the Planet

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11.17 Policies of China, Russia and Canada threaten 5C climate change, study finds [Climate catastrophe is increasingly likely without worldwide organization, funding and commitment to winning THE WAR AGAINST GLOBAL WARMING.]

11.16 Scotland was first Industrialized Country to Run wholly on Wind in October

11.16 How pesticide bans can prevent tens of thousands of suicides a year [how many thousands more die early from eating pesticide-laced food?]

11.15 The Earth is in a death spiral. It will take radical action to save us [fossil fuel burning, un-recyclable plastic production/use and methane gas release must cease ASAP.]

11.15  The long read:  The plastic backlash: what's behind our sudden rage – and will it make a difference? [the world wants to throw-up...]

11.15 Claws out: crab fishermen sue 30 oil firms over climate change [workers are waking-up...]

11.15 Trump administration to cut air pollution from heavy-duty trucks

11.14 Backed by Ocasio-Cortez, Youth Climate Activists Arrested in Pelosi's Office Demanding Democrats Embrace 'Green New Deal'

11.13 What would a smog-free city look like?

11.13 Global report highlights Australia’s renewables potential amid mixed signals for coal

11.13 Interior department whistleblower: Ryan Zinke hollowed out the agency

11.12  This Land is Your Land:  The Zinke effect: how the US interior department became a tool of industry [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.12 Planned Parenthood's new president warns of 'state of emergency' for women's health

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11.19 The Biggest Threat to Free Speech No One Is Talking About

Daily: FAIR Blog
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11.19 Last Week Tonight with John Oliver 11/18/2018 (HBO) [29:26 video]

11.19 Michael Bloomberg: Why I’m Giving $1.8 Billion for College Financial Aid

11.19 Trump’s Diminishing Power and Rising Rage

11.19 Trump Says He Was 'Fully Briefed' and Also 'Not Briefed Yet' But Either Way Saudi Crown Prince 'Absolutely' Not Involved Because Trump Knows 'Everything That Went On' Without Listening to Tape of Khashoggi Murder

11.19 'We Need New Leaders, Period': Progressive Newcomers Urge Democrats to Embrace Bold Agenda or Face Primary Challenges [Current Democrat leaders are highly compromised by corporate donations]

11.19 SNL explains Jeff Bezos and Amazon’s HQ2 strategy: trolling President Trump [2:55 SNL video]

11.18 Trump says Pelosi deserves speakership, offers Republican votes [An affirmation of Pelosi's unsuitability]

11.18 Khanna to Pelosi: Don't Just Create Green New Deal Select Committee, Make Ocasio-Cortez Its Chair [Will Pelosi earnestly change, or end her career in disgrace?]

11.18 Chuck Schumer, Feckless Hack [Neoliberal Democrats must go!]

11.18 What the State of the VA Tells Us About Trump’s War on Welfare [Privatizing often results in outright fraud and higher costs by private prisons, privatized health insurance and health care, privatized public schools and online "colleges" like Trump University]

11.17 What the State of the VA Tells Us About Trump’s War on Welfare

11.17 As Energy for Medicare for All Explodes, Steny Hoyer's Plan Includes Waiting for Trump to Help Make Obamacare Better [Another who is unfit to be Democrat leader]

11.17 'A Staggeringly Bad Idea': Outrage as Pelosi Pushes Tax Rule That Would 'Kneecap the Progressive Agenda' [Unfit to be Democrat leader]

11.17 Trump Is Starting to Panic

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11.18 Big Pharma Bankrolled Pro-Trump Group As Trump Pushed Pharma Tax Cut [Corruption Central!]

11.16 Amazon’s HQ2 Will Get a Tax Break Designed to Help the Poor [a Republican program that directly helps participating wealthy companies—but only helps workers if and when 'trickle-down' occurs.]

11.16 Trump doesn’t want to punish Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi. His new sanctions prove it. [George W. Bush made a similar immoral decision for the same oily reasons after 9-11, protecting Saudi defense contracts while facilitating the slaughter of poorer Arab "terrorists" in the region.]

International & Futurism

11.18 New Evidence Emerges of Steve Bannon and Cambridge Analytica’s Role in Brexit

11.18 France demands UK climate pledge in return for Brexit trade deal [Excellent!]

11.17 Saudi crown prince's 'fit' delays UN resolution on war in Yemen

11.17 Thousands gather to block London bridges in climate rebellion [We're losing WWIII because the enemy is invisible while we're like frogs slowly cooking. We aren't informed enough to be alarmed, but must get organized and motivated to fight back. We need a War Plan to ruthlessly pursue the fight of our lives!]

11.17 CIA finds Saudi crown prince ordered Jamal Khashoggi killing – report

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  Print view: Notes from Besieged Gaza
FASCISM PROGRESS REPORT:

Notes from Besieged Gaza

by Stephen Lendman
Tuesday, 24 August 2010
Raw materials, essential equipment, and non-military goods are still denied; preventing critical repair of water, sewage and healthcare facilities. In addition, no policy change eased people movement into and out of Gaza, those inside are still effectively imprisoned.

On June 17, Israel's Cabinet issued a six point plan, agreeing to ease access for civilian goods entering Gaza without loosening inflexible security measures to restrict them. So what's changed? Not much. Increased truck traffic has been modest at best. The consumer ban was partially lifted, permitting previously prohibited items like ketchup, chocolate and children's toys.

Yet, banned products still include vitally needed industrial and construction items, unrelated to security concerns Israel claims, bogusly calling them "dual use." As a result, the promised ease is unfulfilled.

Strangling Gaza economically continues

Raw materials, spare parts, essential equipment, and numerous other non-military related goods are denied. In addition, no policy change eased people movement into and out of Gaza, those inside effectively imprisoned, exports still banned, and humanitarian flotillas threatened with forcible interdiction, in some cases their cargos and personal possessions stolen to prevent essential goods and cash donations from being delivered.

In an August 22 Common Dreams article, Ann Wright headlined," "Israeli Soldiers Sell Gaza Flotilla Passengers' Computers and Steal Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars in Cash," saying:

"An Israeli newspaper has revealed that four to six computers (among the hundreds seized from Mavi Marmara passengers were) sold by an Israeli First Lieutenant to three junior military personnel. On August 18, a second officer was arrested in connection with the theft."

Labor Party MK Eitan Kabel called the revelation "embarrassing, humiliating and infuriating," but there's more. "Israeli commandos also took cash and credit cards from passengers," an estimated $1,000 or more from each, or at least $750,000, donations intended for Gazans. Four passengers alone had $68,000 stolen, money needy Gazans didn't get.

Other items were also taken, including cell phones, cameras, and electronic equipment, supposedly kept safe but not returned when passengers were released. No one so far has been held accountable, nor for the cold-blooded murder of up to 15 passengers, three commissions investigating them, including:

  • the UN Human Rights Council (HRC), hopefully a second Goldstone Commission;
  • Israel's Turkel Commission, the Netanyahu government's arranged whitewash; and
  • a second Ban Ki-moon appointed UN commission with former Colombian president Alvaro Uribe vice-chairman, a man tainted by corruption, scandal, and links to his country's drug cartels and paramilitary death squads, responsible for murdering thousands of trade unionists, campesinos, human rights workers, independent journalists, pro-democracy advocates, and others opposing Colombia's narco-state terrorism and ties to US imperialism - his appointment outraging activists demanding justice, not coverup and denial.

In an August 17 open letter, Besieged Gaza, Palestine, its members listed below, wrote Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, urging he demand Ban Ki-moon remove Uribe, saying:

"Mr. Prime Minister, it is an insult to the memory of those killed (including nine Turkish citizens on Turkey's Mavi Marmara) to have their blood 'redeemed' by a man who has a record of violations against human rights and international law. (He was) an accomplice in corruption and crimes against humanity....(He) supported the displacement of Afro-Colombian families from their ancestral territories in La Toma, Suarez, and kept silent against the denial of their economic and territorial rights. (He's also) a devoted Zionist, committed to the myth and fabrication of 'Israel's security.' "

It's obscene to assign this man "a duty to uncover crimes against humanity against citizens of your own country," ones he intends to suppress. "(We) urge you now to take action (against him and defend) justice and accountability for Palestine through boycotting apartheid Israel, severing all diplomatic ties with it, and imposing sanctions against it until it complies with international law and ends its occupation, colonization and apartheid in Palestine."

Signed,

Palestinian General Federations of Trade Unions
University Teachers' Association in Palestine
Palestinian Students' Campaign for the Academic Boycott of Israel
The Union of Palestinian Women's Committees
Association of Al-Quds Bank for Culture and Information
General Union of Public Service and Commercial Workers
General Union of Health Service Workers
General Union of Agriculture Workers
General Union of Food Production Workers
General Union of Petrochemical and Gas Workers
Progressive Trade Union Front in Palestine
General Union of Municipality and Local Councils Workers
General Union of Tourism Workers
Arab Cultural Forum (and)
One Democratic State Group

Relentlessly, Israeli Attacks against Gaza Continue

Under siege and regular assaults, Israeli crimes of war and against humanity persist. On August 17, mortar attacks destroyed homes in the town of Abasan. Also, Israeli tanks and bulldozers entered Farrahin, east of Khan Younis in southern Gaza. Residential homes were attacked.

On August 19, Israeli artillery shelled areas near Gaza City. No injuries were reported. Tanks and combat forces make regular incursions, area air space violated daily. Farmers are attacked on their land, fishermen at sea. On August 18, air attacks bombed tunnels, an area near Gaza City, and a central Gazan building belonging to the Al Qassam Brigades. The pattern repeats provocatively, mostly against civilians, always in violation of international law Israel disdainfully spurns.

B'Tselem Update on Gaza's Polluted Water

Headlined, "Water supplied in Gaza unfit for drinking; Israel prevents entry of materials needed to repair system," B'Tselem reports that "Almost 95 percent (of Gaza's water) is polluted and unfit for drinking," a topic addressed in two earlier articles, accessed through the following links:

The UN Environment Programme, Palestinian Water Authority, Coastal Municipalities Water Utility, and international aid organizations issued the above warning, estimating "it will take at least 20 years to rehabilitate Gaza's underground water system, and any delay" will cause further deterioration, perhaps requiring "hundreds of years" to fix.

The crisis arose "following over-pumping" of Coastal Aquifer water, an amount double what's needed to replenish it. As a result, it's permeated with salt water and other contaminants. Also, Cast Lead destruction, wastewater disposal into the Mediterranean for lack of enough power to treat it, and poor maintenance, from prohibited spare parts and equipment, caused more pollution and greater salinity.

Majed Ghanem, Gazan Coastal Municipalities Water Utility quality control director, said a late 2009 examination showed 93% of 180 wells tested had chloride levels four to eight times higher than WHO maximums and nitrate levels six times higher, making the water unsafe to drink. It also looks and smells bad, the Palestinian Water Authority saying almost 40% of Gazan diseases are water related.

Children lacking potable water are vulnerable to malnutrition, diarrhea, and stunted physical and cognitive development, even death. Agriculture is also harmed, both its quality, quantity and safety.

Under siege, essential materials and equipment needed to improve water quality, safety, and taste are banned, including pumps, pipes, generators, computers, cement and other construction items, as well as enough fuel, chloride, and spare parts. The ability to rehab infrastructure and wastewater treatment facilities is also prevented, Israel's bogus easing doing nothing to relieve Gaza's growing humanitarian crisis, one the Netanyahu government wants intensified, not relieved, part of his slow-motion genocide agenda against all Palestinians and Israeli Arabs.

A Final Note

On August 22, the IDF named Major-General Yoav Galant as new chief of staff, succeeding Lieutenant-General Gabi Ashkenazi who'll step down in February, tainted by scandal over charges of hiring a publicist to smear a rival candidate, police and Defense Minister Ehud Barak calling them untrue, but the damage apparently was done.

As head of Israel's Southern Command, Galant ran Cast Lead, responsible for extensive war crimes over a 23-day rampage of disproportionate slaughter and destruction, mainly against non-combatants, infrastructure unrelated to military necessity, and other civilian targets.

He embraces the Dahiya Doctrine, named after the Beirut suburb destroyed in the 2006 Lebanon war through similar disproportionate destruction to achieve military and political objectives.

During Cast Lead, Galant wanted to "send Gaza decades into the past," with no regard for international law or the safety and welfare of non-combatants. Next February, he'll perhaps lead it against all Palestinians and other regional targets, embracing the same strategy used on Gazans.


Stephen Lendman

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His blog is sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to Lendman's cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Mr. Lendman's stories are republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.



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This story was published on August 24, 2010.
 

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