Food for Thought
Lessons from Wisconsin
Port Huron Turns 50
Outraged Over Atrocities
Edward S. Herman
The Arab Spring
Libya, Africa, and AFRICOM
May Day 2012
Taking on Methyl Iodide
EDUCATING WITH MUSIC
Books, Rhymes, Life
The Obama Syndrome
Do No Harm
Ten Economic Crises
Victory for Colombian Students
A Drone World
Advertisements You'll Never See Again
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Libya, Africa, and AFRICOM: An Ongoing Disaster
The scale of the ongoing tragedy visited on
Earlier this year, in-fighting resulted in 147 killed in Southern Libya in a single week and in recent weeks government buildings, including the Prime Ministerial compound, have come under fire by “rebels” demanding cash payment for their services—$1.4 billion has been paid out already, demonstrating again that it was the forces of NATO colonialism, not Gaddafi, who were reliant on “mercenaries.” Payments were suspended last month due to widespread nepotism.
Corruption is becoming endemic. Another $2.5 billion in oil revenues that were supposed to have been transferred to the National Treasury remain unaccounted for. Libyan resources are now being jointly plundered by oil multinationals and a handful of chosen families from among the country’s new elites—a classic neo-colonial stick-up. The use of these resources for giant infrastructure projects, such as the
But woe betide anyone who mentions that now. It was decided long ago that no supporters of Gaddafi would be allowed to stand in the upcoming elections. Recent changes have gone even further. Law 37, passed by the new NATO-imposed government recently, has created a new crime of “glorifying” the former government or its leader, subject to a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. Would this include a passing comment that things were better under Gaddafi? The law is cleverly vague enough to be open to interpretation.
Law 38 is more indicative of the contempt for the rule of law by the new government—a government, remember, which has yet to receive any semblance of a popular mandate and whose only power base remains the colonial armed forces. This law guarantees immunity from prosecution for anyone who committed crimes aimed at “promoting or protecting the revolution.” Those responsible for the ethnic cleansing of Tawergha—such as Misrata’s self-proclaimed “brigade for the purging of black skins”—can continue to hunt down that cities’ refugees in the full knowledge that they have the new law on their side. Those responsible for the massacres in Sirte and elsewhere have nothing to fear. Those involved in the torture of detainees can continue without repercussions as long as it is aimed at “protecting the revolution,” i.e., maintaining a NATO-TNC dictatorship.
Nor has the disaster remained a national one.
Most worrying for the African continent, however, is the forward march of AFRICOM—the
None of this would have been possible while Gaddafi was still in power. As founder of the African Union, its biggest donor, and its one-time elected chair, he wielded serious influence on the continent. He offered cash and investments to African governments who rejected
Now that he is gone, AFRICOM is stepping up its work. The invasions of
Dan Glazebrook writes for the Morning Star newspaper and is one of the coordinators for the British branch of the International Union of Parliamentarians for
Z Magazine Archive
CUBAN 5 - From May 30 to June 5, supporters of the Cuban 5 will gather in Washington DC to raise awareness about the case and to demand a humanitarian solution that will allow the return of these men to their homeland.
Contact: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org.
BIKES - Bikes Not Bombs is holding its 24th annual Bike- A-Thon and Green Roots Festival in Boston, MA on June 3, with several bike rides, music, exhibitors, and more.
Contact: Bikes Not Bombs, 284 Amory St., Jamaica Plain, MA 02130; 617-522-0222; mailbikesnotbombs.org; www.bikesnotbombs.org.
LEFT FORUM - The 2013 Left Forum will be held June 7-9, at Pace University in NYC.
Contact: 365 Fifth Avenue, CUNY Graduate Center, Sociology Dept., New York, NY 10016; http://www.leftforum.org/.
VEGAN FEST - Mad City Vegan Fest will be held in Madison, WI, June 8. The annual event features food, speakers, and exhibitors.
Contact: 122 State Street, Suite 405 B, Madison, WI 53701; email@example.com; http://veganfest.org/.
ADC CONFERENCE - The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) holds its annual conference June 13-16 in Washington, DC, with panel discussions and workshops.
Contact: 1990 M Street, Suite 610, Washington, DC, 20036; 202-244-2990; convention @adc. org http://convention.adc.org/.
CUBA/SOCIALISM - A Cuban-North American Dialog on Socialist Renewal and Global Capitalist Crisis will be held in Havana, Cuba, June 16-30. There will be a 5-day Seminar at the University of Havana, plus visits to a co-op and educational and medical institutions.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.globaljustice center.org/.
NETROOTS - The 8th Annual Netroots Nation conference will take place June 20-23 in San Jose, CA. The event features panels, trainings, networking, screenings, and keynotes.
Contact: 164 Robles Way, #276, Vallejo, CA 94591; email@example.com; http://www.netrootsnation.org/.
MEDIA - The 15th annual Allied Media Conference will be held June 20-23, in Detroit.
Contact: 4126 Third Street, Detroit, MI 48201; http://alliedmedia.org/.
GRASSROOTS - The United We Stand Festival will be hosted by Free & Equal, June 22 in Little Rock, Arkansas. The festival aims to reform the electoral process in the U.S.
LITERACY - The National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) will hold its conference July 12-13 in Los Angeles.
Contact: 10 Laurel Hill Drive, Cherry Hill, NJ 08003; http://namle.net/conference/.
IWW - The North American Work People’s College will take place July 12-16 at Mesaba Co-op Park in northern Minnesota. The event will bring together Wobblies from across the continent to learn skills and build one big union.
PEACESTOCK - On July 13, the 11th Annual Peacestock will take place at Windbeam Farm in Hager City, WI. The event is a mixture of music, speakers, and community for peace. Sponsored by Veterans for Peace.
Contact: Bill Habedank, 1913 Grandview Ave., Red Wing, MN 55066; 651-388-7733; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www. peacestockvfp.org.
LA RAZA - The annual National Council of La Raza (NCLR) Conference is scheduled for July 18-19 in New Orleans, with workshops, presentations, and panel discussions.
Contact: NCLR Headquarters Office, Raul Yzaguirre Building, 1126 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036; 202-785-1670; www.nclr.org.
ACTIVIST CAMP - Youth Empowered Action (YEA) Camp will have sessions in July and August in Ben Lomond, CA; Portland, OR; Charlton, MA. YEA Camp is designed for activists 12-17 years old who want to make a difference.
Contact: email@example.com; http://yeacamp.org/.