Saturday, May 25, 2002

There Is A Firestorm Coming, And It Is Being Provoked By Mr Bush
May 25, 2002

Robert Fiske on how America's support for Israel is playing to the hand of militants and how it pretty much guarantees more attacks.

The article ends..."
Each morning now, I awake beside the Mediterranean in Beirut with a feeling of great foreboding. There is a firestorm coming. And we are blissfully ignoring its arrival; indeed, we are provoking it."

Wednesday, March 06, 2002 Comics | This Modern World
How could I ever have forgotten to put in Tom Tomorrow? Brilliant political cartoon. Go through the entire archive.
Thanks to Doug Baty for pointing out the omission.

Wednesday, December 26, 2001

The Newspaper Guild: Patriotism's 2-Edged Sword

The Newspaper Guild is an unit of the Communications Workers of America,a labor organization for "Media Workers in the Information Age." Here's what they say about their work.

The Newspaper Guild-CWA, representing men and women employees in the newspaper industry throughout the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico, has long championed the unique role of a free press in a democracy. That role includes the right, obligation and necessity of free inquiry, of the uncensored exchange of news and information, and of vigorous debate and the exchange of conflicting views and opinions-the very essence of democratic self-governance. The importance of this role does not diminish in times of national crisis: indeed, because such crises may result in the expenditure of huge sums of money, national effort and human lives, it becomes even more critical that those who speak with a different voice be heard.

Therefore, it is with great concern that The Newspaper Guild-CWA notes these situations where those in the mass media whose views don't agree with the conventional wisdom have been punished. We believe such a reaction is un-American; it threatens to transform us into precisely the kind of zealots whose intolerance for other values and ways of life resulted in the deaths of more than 6,000 people on Sept. 11.
This link takes you to a version of their page that's USA based. They also have Canadian version.

Tuesday, December 25, 2001

Victory Coffee
Another blog that evolved out of a guy's inundating friends with email references to news stories. Differs from this one in that it focuses on individual stories rather than on links to other news sources. No comment on the stories. There are just titles and links. Excellent. Well worth spending some time at.

Monday, December 24, 2001 | Online Newspaper Directory
In 1997, Ian Duckworth, then a law student in Western Australia, started compiling a page of newspapers with online editions. It's grown to include 5,339 papers around the world. Papers from all the places you'd expect are here so I thought I'd put the site to a test and try something difficult and/or exotic.

Although not every obscure local paper I looked for was in the collection I did find 29 local Montana papers ranging from the Bigfork Eagle to the Wolf Point Herald News.

On the international side of things I checked several papers from China and from Taiwan. I went for the most obscure place I could think of and found myself reading the one listed paper from Burkina Faso. There were 3 Mongolian papers (in English) but only 1 from Ascencion Island (English) and 2 from the Faroe Islands (both in Faroese.)

The news stories on this page are international but you can also link to pages that focus on Canadian or U.K. content.

The site is free but for $2.95 a month (that seems to be US rather than Australian, as far as I can tell) the page becomes ad free and you get the following:
* Customised Homepage
* Select Your Own Headline Feeds, Search Panel, Paper Picks
* Bookmark Your Favourite Newspapers
* Translate Newspapers
* Write Letters to the Editor
* View More Papers Per Page (100 instead of 40)

The only flaw I can find with this site is its design. When you first log in the connection is slow. Once your browser caches some of the graphics on the front page subsequent visits go faster. As for the speed of each of the 5,339 papers' individual sites... you're on your own

BuzzFlash World Media Watch
Every day Gloria Lalumia of BuzzFlash selects a few major stories from the world's press. She posts them them at BuzzFlash with a little bit of editing ( you see the word ....snip where she's ... well, where she's snipped.) She also posts links to the original articles. This is a helpful site if you want a quick check on the international press. You won't get complete coverage, of course, but you can find that back on BuzzFlash's main page.

Thursday, December 20, 2001

Foreign Policy In Focus Home Page
They say of themselves,
Foreign Policy In Focus (FPIF), established in 1996, seeks to make the U.S. a more responsible global leader and global partner. It is a "think tank without walls" that functions as an international network of more than 650 policy analysts and advocates. Unlike traditional think tanks, FPIF is committed to advancing a citizen-based foreign policy agenda--one that is fundamentally rooted in citizen initiatives and movements.
FPIF is a collaborative project of the Interhemispheric Resource Center (IRC) and the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS).
Since their concern is with foreign policy you'll find issues other than the war here but, of course, it's all interwoven.

Tuesday, December 11, 2001

Democracy Now! In Exile - The War And Peace Report With Amy Goodman
A daily radio report. You can read transcripts or listen on line.The site's self description:

"Democracy Now! In Exile" features the ideas and voices of some of the best minds of this generation (and previous ones), including activists, muckrakers, visionaries, artists, risk-takers, academics and "just folks" who share a commitment to truth, democracy, justice, diversity, equality and peace. ... The Team includes some of this country's leading progressive journalists who've garnered dozens of awards for their ground-breaking work in radio and print journalism.
The "In Exile" part of their name comes from some of their staff's involvement with Pacifica Radio. Note for those who might not know the story. Pacifica is the oldest public broadcasting entity in the US. It was founded in 1946 with the mission statement:
To promote cultural diversity and pluralistic community expression...To contribute to a better understanding between individuals of all nations, races, creeds, and colors...To promote freedom of the press and serve as a forum for various viewpoints...To maintain an independent funding base.
The broadcast of December 12, 2001 includes an important report by Prof. Marc Herold of the Economics Department, University of New Hampshire, on the number of Afghan civilian deaths from the bombing. As of December 7 the number of civilian casualties killed in the US bombing of Afghanistan was over 3700. His report is at the following link: A Dossier on Civilian Victims of United States Aerial Bombing of Afghanistan: A Comprehensive accounting.

Herold has also compiled a day by day accounting of civilian deaths at this link.It's in the form of an Excel Spreadsheet. In hard copy it's about 50 pages long.

To listen to the news on Democracy Now you'll need to have RealPlayer. It's a free download. If the above link doesn't work try this one. You'll have to look around the page for the link to the free version. It's small and has no graphics to call your attention to it.It's usually on the left side of the page near the bottom.
Federation of American Scientists
(from their mission statement)
The Federation of American Scientists conducts analysis and advocacy on science, technology and public policy, including national security, nuclear weapons, arms sales, biological hazards, secrecy, education technology, information technology, energy and the environment. FAS is a privately-funded non-profit 501c3 organization whose Board of Sponsors includes 58 of America's Nobel laureates in the sciences.
This link takes you to their starting page. Has links for many topics among which are: The War Against Terrorism; Fewer Nukes But Looser; The Search for Proliferation Resistant Nuclear Power; News Archive; Arms Control; Space Policy; Emerging Technologies. And that's just for starters.

Monday, December 10, 2001

The Integration of Theory and Practice: A Program for the New Traditionalist Movement
This one is a bit off topic in that it's neither a news source or a report. Still, it belongs here. A truely astounding document from the Free Congress Foundation, a conservative group. It's long but worth reading. Buzzflash has excerpted the essence of it here. Better yet, read the original. Scary.Very scary.
History News Network
This site focuses on the historical background of current issues. Its advisory board consists of people with solid academic credentials. It also has a teachers edition ... actually more of a page of related links than an edition. The discussion threads seem thoughtful and well least the few I looked at did. My guess is that this site could be very useful for high school classes.

Here's what they say about themselves:
Among the many duties we assume are these: To expose politicians who misrepresent history. To point out bogus analogies. To deflate beguiling myths. To remind Americans of the irony of history. To put events in context. To remind us all of the complexity of history.

Because we believe history is complicated our pages are open to people of all political persuasions. Left, right, center: all are welcome.

Saturday, December 01, 2001

Internet Samizdat Releases Suppressed Voices, History
From today's CommonDreams. As Paul Harvey (is he still alive and on radio?)...used to say, "And now.. for the REST of the story."

The internet functions much like the samizdat press in the Soviet Union. Contains an interview with Zbigniew Brzezinski which sheds more light on the role of the U.S. in Afghanistan. Makes it pretty clear why Bush wants to block the release of all presidential papers Unfortunately, the people who most need to read this stuff are unlikely to see it. It certainly isn't going to appear in the mainstream press.

Friday, November 30, 2001

Alternative Resources on the U.S. War
Another idiosyncratic this one. More links than this page but far fewer than CommonDreams. Has links to demonstrations and other anti-war activities. Well worth a visit.
Common Dreams - News & Views for the Progressive Community
It's got so many links that you could spend all day on it. Nonetheless, it's well laid out, not too confusing, and pretty useful. Has a link to one of my favorite columnists, Molly Ivins among the many listed on the lower right side of the page.. If you don't know her writing you're in for a treat. The best Texas has to offer... she's been covering Dubya for years. In fact, I think she's the one who started referring to him as Dubya...either that or Shrub.

Well worth visiting. One of my favorite sites. It's part of my daily newspaper equivalent.
If you only have time for one site - make it this one.
The Nation:September 11th Resources
The Nation has put together a collection of links to its own articles and reports as well as to others'. There are not a lot of links to outside resources but the ones that are listed are excellent. There are resources on activism, resources on the media, resources on Islam.

Thursday, November 29, 2001

The National Security Archive
This collection of documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act is archived at George Washington University. It's as solid a source as you'll find anywhere. Much of the stuff that doesn't appear in the press can be found here. THE place to go if you want to know what's behind the stories in the press and in the broadcast media.Pretty scary!!

Take a look at The September 11th Sourcebooks, essential background material on "terrorism," Afghanistan, etc.

An excerpt from that page...
The ArchiveÕs mission is to put on the record the primary source documentation that can enrich the policy debate, improve journalism, educate policymakers, and ensure that we donÕt reinvent the wheel or repeat the mistakes of the past.

To these ends, we have published a series of volumes called "The September 11th Sourcebooks." We have cast a wide net, because the policy debate itself is also ranging widely, from deployment options abroad to wiretap surveillance at home.
Not related to the current war but of historical interest on the issue of The United States' approach to invading other countries is this extraordinary document which describes a proposal made during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. A recent report on that story is William Pitt's The Man Behind the Curtain. It reports on "Operation Northwoods." It gives paranoia a good name!
Bear Left! Political Commentary and Links
One guy's collection of links. Updated weekly. Contains a comprehensive list of Links to the Best of the Left on the Web.
Cafe Progressive's Alternative Guide to the web
Another link that's slightly off topic. Essentially a huge list of links. Arranged by category it can be a useful starting point when you are trying to find something.

Common Dreams' Readers Choice: Essays on September 11

This link takes you to a page on which The Nation lists its most commonly forwarded essays each month. The name of each essay is a live link that takes you to the essay itself. Here you'll find links to the two outstanding essays of Arundhati Roy:The Algebra of Infinite Justice and Brutality Smeared in Peanutbutter. Robert Fiske of The Independent is here as is myl longtime favorite, Molly Ivins. Others include Barbara Kingsolver and Rep. Barbara Lee, the only person in the House of Representatives to oppose a granting virtually unlimited and unsupervised military authority to Bush.
Not directly related to the topic of the blog but too interesting to leave out. They say of themelves: is an internet community of over 1,000 organisations leading the way for human rights and sustainable development worldwide. You can use these pages to search or browse through our partners' sites by country, type of organisation or field of interest. You can also browse the partner list alphabetically.
The online component of Z Magazine. Noam Chomsky, Barbara Ehrenreich, and Howard Zinn (among many others) can often be found here.
Alternative Press Center Home Page
(from their opening page)
The Alternative Press Center (APC) is a non-profit collective dedicated to providing access to and increasing public awareness of the alternative press. Founded in 1969, it remains one of the oldest self-sustaining alternative media institutions in the United States. For more than a quarter of a century, the Alternative Press Index has been recognized as a leading guide to the alternative press in the United States and around the world.
Welcome to CounterPunch
A newsletter by Alexander Cockburn and Jeffery St. Clair.
BuzzFlash Report
Another site with reports from many sources.

The strong point of this site is its colorful and slightly excited, almost tabloid, way of phrasing its headlines. Most headlines just sit there introducing the story. BuzzFlash's headlines are designed to excite the reader. At times I find it a bit much but there's no other site/publication that I visit specifically just to read the headlines. Whoever writes them is good!.BuzzFlash is usually one of the first places to see that some small story might be more important than it looks. I still tend to spend more time at CommonDreams but I make it a point to visit BuzzFlash several times a week as well. - A Global Network of Media Issues Groups

Their mission statement begins: is a nonprofit, public interest Web site dedicated to global media issues. MediaChannel offers news, reports and commentary from our international network of media-issues organizations and publications, as well as original features from contributors and staff. Resources include thematic special reports, action toolkits, forums for discussion, an indexed directory of hundreds of affiliated groups and a search engine constituting the single largest online media-issues database.
Guardian Unlimited
This link takes you to the daily page of the Guardian. It's a good news source AND people such as Arundhati Roy and Robert Fiske publish here.
The Nation
As they said when they opened shop in 1865
The Nation will not be the organ of any party, sect, or body. It will, on the contrary, make an earnest effort to bring to the discussion of political and social questions a really critical spirit, and to wage war upon the vices of violence, exaggeration, and misrepresentation by which so much of the political writing of the day is marred.

What else is new?
Daryl Cagle's Professional Cartoonists Index!
Editiorial cartoons from around the world. North America gets the lion's share, of course, but everyone is represented. There's a huge amount of material here. Although the site is visually busy (it is a collection of cartoons after all) there are good navigation tools and it's easy to get around. Don't miss the section of Cartoons you might not like.
GlobalSpin: News and Views From Abroad
A small but well selected representation of what's in the world press. They say,
What you will see on this website, are the voices of press and of people from all over the world. These will include the voices of:

* the other empires
* religiously based societies
* politically unaligned countries
* all those other countries in Europe
* the too poor to matter
* the too tiny to be noticed
* the deeply disenfranchised

There will be facts, of course - facts that are simply omitted from the mainstream media's coverage of events. Facts that may surprise you.
Note the link on the left hand side of the page.It takes you to a page with links to news sources in over 100 countries.
Institute for Public Accuracy - IPA
From their site...
As a nationwide consortium of policy researchers, the Institute for Public Accuracy seeks to broaden public discourse by gaining media access for those whose perspectives are commonly drowned out by corporate-backed think tanks and other influential institutions. With systematic outreach to mass media, the Institute promotes the inclusion of outlooks that usually get short shrift. The Institute's news releases provide well-documented analysis that is pegged on fast-breaking events while focusing on fundamental issues.