All posts filed under: historical perspectives

We Need a Martin Luther King Day of Truth

As Martin Luther King’s birthday is celebrated with a national holiday, his death day disappears down the memory hole. Across the country – in response to the King Holiday and Service Act passed by Congress and signed by Bill Clinton in 1994 – people will be encouraged to make the day one of service. Such service does not include King’s commitment to protest a decadent system of racial and economic injustice or non-violently resist the U.S. warfare state that he called “the greatest purveyor of violence on earth.”

NATO Expansion: What Gorbachev Heard

by the George Washington University’s National Security Archive, December 12, 2017 Declassified documents show security assurances against NATO expansion to Soviet leaders from Baker, Bush, Genscher, Kohl, Gates, Mitterrand, Thatcher, Hurd, Major, and Woerner U.S. Secretary of State James Baker’s famous “not one inch eastward” assurance about NATO expansion in his meeting with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev on February 9, 1990, was part of a cascade of assurances about Soviet security given by Western leaders to Gorbachev and other Soviet officials throughout the process of German unification in 1990 and on into 1991, according to declassified U.S., Soviet, German, British and French documents posted today [December 12, 2017] by the National Security Archive at George Washington University (http://nsarchive.gwu.edu). The documents show that multiple national leaders were considering and rejecting Central and Eastern European membership in NATO as of early 1990 and through 1991, that discussions of NATO in the context of German unification negotiations in 1990 were not at all narrowly limited to the status of East German territory, and that subsequent Soviet and Russian …

The Dallaire Genocide Fax: A Fabrication

by Christopher Black, April 8 2018, via The Rwandan I first wrote this in 2005 and it was published by Sanders Research Associates in the UK. Since then the information in it has been deliberately ignored by writers in Canada and the US (apart from David Peterson and Ed Herman who supported me in my fight with the New York Times to get the truth out, and Mick Collins) who write on the subject and to whom I have sent this information and of course by the major media. Even those willing to criticise Dallaire on some level seem to want to protect him on this. I have the copy of the fabricated fax as sent into the UN for anyone to see and I have the transcripts of the cross-examination of the Belgian Army  Colonel Claeys during which it was shown to be a forgery by the British Army. Why writers and media continue to ignore the facts they will have to explain. But such, shall we say, negligence seems to be normal these …

War Criminals at Large

It is a common misconception that democracies do not start wars of aggression or carry out terrorist attacks. The historical facts for the period from 1945 to today show a completely different reality: time and again, democratic states in Europe and North America have participated in wars of aggression and terrorist attacks in the past 70 years.

Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” at 175

Catte This is an updated version of our 2017 article to mark the 175th anniversary of A Christmas Carol Today we think of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol as a cosy piece of traditional seasonal fare, replete with steaming puds and roasted goose and comfortably easy lessons about not being stingy at Crimbo. But when Dickens wrote his novella in 1843 he was delivering a far more serious – and possibly freshly relevant – warning about the moral bankruptcy of a society that destroys human lives in pursuit of profit. It’s a fact not much considered, but Das Kapital and A Christmas Carol were both written in the same city, in the same decade – just five years apart. To those familiar only with the numerous adaptations of Dickens’ tale it might seem absurd to look for any point of connection between these two books. What can a feel-good tale of middle class redemption have to do with a study of the class struggle? But this question only begs to be asked because a lot …

JFK 55 years on: Casting Light on 9/11 & Other 21st Century Crimes

Fifty-five years ago, on November 22, 1963, John F. Kennedy was assassinated. Although there has been a great deal written about this event over the years, I want to draw attention to one exceptionally important article, originally delivered as a talk on November 20, 1998. Vincent Salandria gave this talk in Dallas at the invitation of the Coalition on Political Assassinations. Salandria had been a high school teacher at the time of the assassination (he later became a lawyer) and was one of the first people in the US to write essays expressing dissent from the government narrative of lone gunman Lee Harvey Oswald, maverick leftist.

World War I: An Illustrated Guide to Propaganda

Terje Maloy These stories are not unique cases from a remote war. The same methods are constantly rinsed and repeated, the mentality in our ruling elites is the same, and the risk of a major conflict is as great today as in 1914. These examples concentrate mostly on British/American perception management and propaganda. First of all, because they are masters of the art, and secondly, as victors they still dominate the narrative. ARTHUR PONSONBY AND FALSEHOOD IN WARTIME After the Great War came a huge backlash of disillusion and revulsion. Calmly analysed, most of what had been told in the war turned out to be lies and half-truths. “Falsehood in War-time, Containing an Assortment of Lies Circulated Throughout the Nations During the Great War” was the title of a book published in 1928. Written by Arthur, Ponsonby, it discussed 20 instances of lies in wartime. The contents of the book can be summed up in the Ten Commandments of War Propaganda: We do not want war. The opposite party alone is guilty of war. The enemy is the face of …

Armistice Day & the Resurrection of the Old Lie

In a profoundly dishonest society, the shared grief of World War I is one of the few things we all know the truth of. One of the few things we are all honest about. Because it’s important. Because it’s a wound too deep to ignore, a betrayal too lasting to be forgiven.

The Great War was sold to the British public as a just war. Men were sent over to France and Belgium to curb “German aggression and Imperial ambitions”. Every generation since has known that to be an absurd lie.

That lesson could be vital to our survival.

Upside Down Mark Twain

Philip Farruggio Mark Twain AKA Samuel Clemens ( 1835-1910) best known for his literary works like Tom Sawyer & Huckleberry Finn, was also a man with deep rooted empathy for any underclass containing people of color. Few readers of his works realize that he was also a staunch opponent of imperialism, having been president of the Anti Imperialist League from 1901 to his death in 1910. Twain wrote about the treatment of the Chinese in San Francisco during the Civil War when he was a newspaper reporter. In 1865 he astonished many passersby, even those who fought for the abolition of slavery years earlier, when he chose to walk arm in arm through the San Francisco streets with the editor of the recently established Afro American newspaper, the Elevator. Of course, one of his most famous quotes was on his definition of politics: “To protect us from the crooks and scoundrels”. He also said something that resonates so strongly today: Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting …

NATO’s Nazi Beginnings

by Robert S. Rodvik, 21 June 2012, VoltaireNet Who gave NATO the right to rule the world? This author elucidates how the Western elite, many of whom were Hitler supporters, rescued a vast number of Nazi hierarchy and placed them in positions to continue the many decades long fight against Russia. The One Percent of the time and the One Percent of today have sent millions to their deaths in formulating and enacting Winston Churchill’s 1918 pledge to “strangle at its birth” the Bolshevik menace. Total control of the so-called mainstream media has furthered that odious task. Many writers have documented how British and American elites bankrolled Hitler’s rise to power and not until he turned his forces westward did they begin to mount defensive actions against the Third Reich. In Britain, elite members of The Right Club, often with government collusion, secretly supported Hitler’s actions against the Jews and against communists and socialists. The Duke of Wellington was a noted anti-semite and a member of the Right Club. Edward the VIII, known as “the …

The Milagro of Oscar Romero’s Sainthood

Lately when you read the news about the Catholic Church, it’s really bad. But on October 15, the Pope canonized a truly remarkable person, Oscar Romero. This is a saint whose life you should study, even if you aren’t Catholic.

The #MeToo campaign versus the presumption of innocence

Eric London, World Socialist Website In the US, the Democratic Party and its celebrity and media allies, through the vehicle of its #MeToo campaign, are waging a battle against the presumption of innocence. By seeking to whip up hysterical moods surrounding allegations of sexual misconduct, they are trying to popularize the idea that those accused of sexual assault should be presumed guilty. This campaign is, in its essence, reactionary and should be opposed. The proponents of this view have put forward four primary arguments: All accusers must be believed, and doubting any accuser is tantamount to “victim blaming” or “rape apology.” The actress Rose McGowan said in December 2017, “I would challenge the media to stop using the word ‘alleged.’ My beef is really with all the people who are complicit. It’s the first time in history women are being believed, even though we get slagged.” The impact of such crimes on victims is so devastating that basic protections for the accused are obstacles in the way of justice, not only for the particular accuser, …

MS Estonia – still doubts over official story 24 years after the biggest maritime disaster in Europe since WW2

Terje Maloy Just after midnight on September 28th, 1994, the passenger ferry MS Estonia sank in the Baltic Sea. It was sailing its regular route, from Tallinn in Estonia to the Swedish capital Stockholm. The vessel capsized and sank in less than an hour, in the end settling sideways on the ocean floor at 80 meters deep. The weather was rough, but nothing extraordinary for the time of year, with winds of 25 meters/second and waves of 4 to 6 meters. Of the 989 passengers and crew, 852 died, making it the biggest European maritime disaster since WW2. 501 of the dead were Swedes. Just hours after the sinking, Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt was quick to try to control the narrative of what had happened. In a statement to the public, he announced that the sinking happened because the bow visor (the front part protecting the bow of the ship, which can be lifted up to allow the car ramp to be extended), had fallen off due to being pounded by the waves. The same afternoon …

Why I join the ILP

by George Orwell We’re republishing Orwell’s 1938 piece here for its continuing relevance in our times.  First published by New Leader on June 24, 1938, the text is also available at the Marxists’ Internet Archive. Perhaps it will be frankest to approach it first of all from the personal angle. I am a writer. The impulse of every writer is to ‘keep out of politics’. What he wants is to be left alone so that he can go on writing books in peace. But unfortunately it is becoming obvious that this ideal is no more practicable than that of the petty shop-keeper who hopes to preserve his independence in the teeth of the chain-stores. To begin with, the era of free speech is closing down. The freedom of the Press in Britain was always something of a fake, because in the last resort, money controls opinion; still, so long as the legal right to say what you like exists, there are always loopholes for an unorthodox writer. For some years past I have managed to …

The Russian minority in the Baltics live under ‘apartheid’ states

Max Parry It has been nearly three decades since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Despite Russia’s reemergence on the world stage as a respected power after market-oriented ‘reforms’ destroyed its economy for the duration of the nineties, the breakup of the USSR is an event regarded by an increasing amount of Russians as a catastrophic tragedy rather than a triumph of ‘freedom and democracy.’ In recent years, there have been numerous polls showing that more than half of Russians not only regret the collapse of the Soviet Union but would even prefer for its return. However, the nostalgia only comes as a surprise to those who have forgotten that not long before the failed August Coup that led to its demise, the first and only referendum in its history was held in March of 1991 which polled citizens if they wished to preserve the Soviet system. The results were more than three quarters of the population in the entire socialist federation (including Russia) voting a resounding yes with a turnout of 80% in the …

European Holocaust had roots in Africa, now Namibia is suing Germany

In Africa, Namibian history is no secret. Nothing is taboo. This is what is common knowledge in Windhoek or in Cape Town in neighboring South Africa:

The Germans drove into the desert, and then exterminated, over 80% of the entire nation – the Herero. The Nama people lost around 50% of its population. The concentration and extermination camps were built; monstrous medical experiments on human beings were perpetrated. German ‘doctors’including those who were working on ‘the pure race doctrine’ in Namibia (the doctrine later used by the Nazis in Europe), subsequently ‘educated’ many German racist physicians, including the notorious ‘Angel of Death’ – Mengele. The most notorious doctor, who experimented on human beings in Africa, was Eugen Fischer.

The Satanic Nature of the Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

American history can only accurately be described as the story of demonic possession, however you choose to understand that phrase. Maybe radical “evil” will suffice. But right from the start the American colonizers were involved in massive killing because they considered themselves divinely blessed and guided, a chosen people whose mission would come to be called “manifest destiny.” Nothing stood in the way of this divine calling, which involved the need to enslave and kill millions and millions of innocent people that continues down to today.

New Zealand – The ebb & flow of History

Hugh O’Neill There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries. On such a full sea are we now afloat.” Julius Caesar, Act iv, Scene iii After Napoleon’s defeat in 1815, the British Empire had few rivals in the first half of the 19th Century, but when Britain allied with France in the Crimean War against Russia, they realised that wooden ships were no match for French iron ships. The Industrial Revolution was spreading and other empires were rising: Russia, Japan, America, France and Germany all wished to join the global game of chess. Russophobia thrived in NZ since the Crimean War, encouraged by newspapers e.g. Daily Southern Cross whose 1873 ‘hoax’ report of Russian ship “Kaskowiski” invading Auckland caused panic. When the Russian Empire did collide with the British in Northern Afghanistan (Pandjeh Incident 1884), the NZ public demanded protection in the form of coastal batteries, torpedo boats and militia training, …

The Blatant Conspiracy behind Senator Robert F. Kennedy’s Assassination

Fifty years ago on June 5 1968, Robert F. Kennedy, younger brother of the murdered president, was shot and killed under circumstances perhaps even more suspicious and bizarre than those surrounding John Kennedy’s murder. No even slightly satisfactory explanation has ever been offered for the glaring anomalies and contradictions in this case. Here Edward Curtin revisits some of the abiding questions surrounding this third politically motivated assassination to impact America in five years, and the legacy it left behind

The U.S. won’t say ‘genocide’ but cares about Armenian democracy?

by Max Parry “Did Armenia just dance its way to revolution?” Mass demonstrations that have shut down Armenia leading to the replacement of its prime minister have queued the obligatory western media push for regime change. Already dubbed a ‘Velvet Revolution’ after the 1989 protests that collapsed communist Czechoslovakia, there have been so many ‘color revolutions’ in former Soviet states that the colors are being recycled by the NGOs. The first crowds gathered in April in response to the Republican Party of Armenia’s decision to nominate outgoing leader Serzh Sargsyan as the sole candidate for Prime Minister after having already served as the country’s President since 2008. Despite its constitutional legality, this was perceived by many to be a consolidation of power as he would have retained the same authority since the country just transitioned to a prime ministerial system. Predictably, the western media commentary has framed the protests in the context of the new Cold War by emphasizing the ruling party’s links to ‘Kremlin oligarchs’ and Armenia’s presence within Russia’s sphere of influence. However, …