Z Nightly Commentaries
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Recent Z Nightly Commentaries
Dec 05, 2008
The first problem in examining the SOFA text is that we cannot yet be sure exactly what the text says. The Iraqi parliament is debating one version, that has been translated informally to English for the international press. But we do not yet have the White House's official version. Until that time, I do not think we can assume that the text now being discussed in the press is necessarily "the" final version. There are many in Iraq who are eager to present the text as a victory for Iraqi sovereignty; there is certainly the possibility that the text circulating in Iraq has been doctored with in such a way as to over-emphasize Iraq's power in the future U.S.-Iraq relationship.
Blum: Anti-Empire Report
Dec 03, 2008
Okay, let's get the obvious out of the way. It was historic. I choked up a number of times, tears came to my eyes, even though I didn't vote for him. I voted for Ralph Nader for the fourth time in a row.
Bond: Economic Advisors
Nov 12, 2008
One of Barack Obama's leading advisors has done more damage to Africa, its economies and its people than anyone I can think of in world history, including even Cecil John Rhodes. That charge may surprise readers, but hear me out.
Bond: African Resistance
Oct 25, 2008
Far-reaching strategic debate is underway about how to respond to the global financial crisis, and indeed how the North's problems can be tied into a broader critique of capitalism.
Bennis: Economic Power
Oct 19, 2008
As its economic power wanes, does the US lean harder on the military?
Oct 02, 2008
Many insightful analyses have been written on the recent Russia-Georgia war. Some writers looked at what the war means in the context of the "great game." Others examined what might have motivated Georgia to instigate such a seemingly impossible fight with Russia. Another approach was to analyze the United States' influence on the conflict. This particular composition will utilize a few basic applications of international law to briefly analyze the war.
Bennis: Militarism & Elections
Sep 24, 2008
As we prepare for the post-election and post-inauguration periods we know, whoever wins, four more years of protest, mobilization, and political pressure will be required.
Bond: SA & Zimbabwe
Sep 21, 2008
The past week has been a wild roller-coaster ride in and out of Southern African ruling-party politics, down the troughs of world capitalism, and up the peaks of radical social activism. Glancing around the region and world from those peaks, we can see quite a way further than usual.
Blum: Anti-Empire Report
Sep 11, 2008
Im sorry to say that I think that John McCain is going to be the next president of the United States. After the long night of Bush horror any Democrat should easily win, but the Dems are screwing it up and McCain has been running more-or-less even with Barack Obama in the polls. The Democrats should run on the slogan "If you liked Bush, you'll love McCain", but that would be too outspoken, too direct for the spineless Nancy Pelosi and her spineless party. Or, "If you liked Iraq, you'll love Iran." But the Democrat leadership is not on record as categorically opposing either conflict.
Bond: Ecological Debt
Aug 22, 2008
"We are the creditors!," insist African social activists victimized by the ongoing Third World debt crisis, but now gathered to fight back.
Blum: Anti-Empire Report
Aug 08, 2008
The New Yorker magazine in its July 14 issue ran a cover cartoon that achieved instant fame. It showed Barack Obama wearing Muslim garb in the Oval Office with a portrait of Osama bin Laden on the wall. Obama is delivering a fist bump to his wife, Michelle, who has an Afro hairdo and an assault rifle slung over her shoulder. An American flag lies burning in the fireplace. The magazine says it's all satire, a parody of the crazy right-wing fears, rumors, and scare tactics about Obama's past and ideology.
Barouski: Congo Connections
Jul 27, 2008
At the end of last year, I finished a preliminary investigation into a suspected international mineral-smuggling ring in the war-torn North Kivu Province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). It was associated with General Laurent Nkunda(batware), who is the target of international sanctions.
Bennis: U.S. In Mideast
Jul 25, 2008
Maliki's endorsement of Obama's withdrawal plan is probably worth all of his trade union, women's organizations and Democratic governors' endorsements together. And it is hardly surprising. Maliki faces growing pressure in the run-up to this fall's (or, more likely, next year's) Iraqi elections to come out against the despised U.S. occupation that in fact maintains him in power, and he was desperately seeking a way to juggle those realities. Endorsing Obama's plan allowed Maliki to call for "an end to occupation" even though the last thing he wants would be an actual end to the U.S. troop presence. Maliki, unlike too many U.S. supporters of Obama, certainly knew that Obama's plan to withdraw troops over 16 months would leave behind somewhere between 35,000 and 80,000 U.S. occupation troops (his advisers say 50,000) in Iraq for an indefinite period, to carry out a wide range of military tasks including training the Iraqi security forces and unspecified counter-insurgency operations. That would be just fine for Maliki - allowing U.S. troops to remain indefinitely, to continue backing his government, while reducing the size, visibility, and "footprint" of the U.S. occupation in the hope that popular opposition and resistance might subside.
Billet: Stuck in 'Guyville'
Jul 18, 2008
Listening to Liz Phair's debut Exile in Guyville, recently reissued by ATO Records after years out of print, it's striking how fresh and new the album sounds. It's raw, coarse, cocky and confrontational; it fits right in with the kind of rock albums finding exposure right now in the resurgence of garage and indie-rock. Indeed, Guyville is something of a blueprint in that respect.
Jul 08, 2008
The Japanese pilots who bombed Pearl Harbor were being patriotic. The German people who supported Hitler and his conquests were being patriotic, fighting for the Fatherland. All the Latin American military dictators who overthrew democratically-elected governments and routinely tortured people were being patriotic -- saving their beloved country from "communism".
Bond: Reparations for Apartheid
Jul 06, 2008
A telling remark about US imperialism's double standards was uttered by Clinton-era deputy treasury secretary Stuart Eizenstat, who a decade ago was the driver of reparations claims against pro-Nazi corporations, assisting plaintiffs to gain $8 billion from European banks and corporations which ripped off Holocaust victims' funds or which were 1930s beneficiaries of slave-labor (both Jewish and non-Jewish).
Bennis: Mideast Occupations
Jun 18, 2008
In recent weeks the Bush administration has intensified its longstanding effort to make the U.S. occupation of Iraq permanent. First choice is to coerce the U.S.-backed Iraqi government to sign an ostensibly "bilateral" agreement - what the White House would like to call a "status of forces agreement" (SOFA). The administration is pushing to meet the July 31 deadline that was earlier agreed to for that agreement. There are new indications of Iraqi resistance to the proposed agreement - both U.S. occupation-backed Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and the influential Shi'a cleric Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani have recently indicated strong opposition. But the U.S. effort to impose a "security agreement" remains in force.
Bond: Europe & Africa
Jun 13, 2008
In early June, the British-Dutch firm Shell Oil - one of Rodney's targets - was instructed to depart from the Ogoniland region within the Niger Delta, where in 1995 Shell officials were responsible for the execution of Ken Saro-Wiwa by Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha. After decades of abuse, women protesters, local NGOs and the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) gave Shell the shove. France's Total appears next in line, in part because of additional pressure from the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta.
Billet: Tellin' It How It Is
Jun 08, 2008
"With the Sean Bell situation, New York is basically saying 'fuck niggas.'" Who in their right minds can honestly disagree with these words, bluntly stated by rapper/producer/activist David Banner? The April 25th aquittal of three New York City cops, who killed Bell after pumping fifty rounds into his car, sends a clear message to the African-American community: If the police can get away with gunning down one unarmed black man, they can get away with it again. Indeed, it happened several times over well before Bell. It's no wonder that the verdict has provoked outrage and frustration from religious leaders, local politicians and community activists.
Bennis: Mideast At War
May 29, 2008
This is a period of rapid and dramatic decline of American economic power around the world, and that, along with massive anger directed at U.S. policies around the world, has resulted in a precipitous drop in U.S. diplomatic and political influence. As a result, for those committed to maintaining Washington's superpower status, choosing military force to assert U.S. global reach becomes more, not less likely. Forcing a real end to the U.S. occupation of Iraq is more difficult than ever. U.S. military support to Israel is higher than ever. And the danger of a U.S. military strike on Iran remains as high as ever.