All posts tagged: john pilger

The Obvious Dirty Dealings Behind Julian Assange’s Arrest

The US has been planning to have Julian Assange handed over for a longtime, that much is obvious. Mike Pence, the Vice President, was visiting Ecuador last year, notionally to discuss the Venezuela situation, and trade. But it was fairly obvious at the time, and even more so now, that they were discussing the details of Assange being handed over to UK authorities, and eventually extradited to the US. “Trade”, indeed.

The Fascinating Spell Cast by Weasels

Edward Curtin Ah, mon cher, for anyone who is alone, without God and without a master, the weight of days is dreadful. Hence one must choose a master, God being out of style.” Albert Camus, The Fall To be fascinated by another person who holds or symbolizes power is very common. It is often accompanied by a frisson of sexual excitement, whether repressed or acknowledged, explicitly or implicitly projected. Masters need slaves and slaves need their masters. The chief, the big man, the fascinating woman, the glamorous celebrity, the rich mogul, the powerful politician, while all standard vintage people without their accoutrements of prestigious (magical) power, magnetically attract many people wishing to surrender passively to the perceived superior power of what Carl Jung called the “mana-personality.” However, such supernatural power or aura is in the eyes of the beholder, who wishes to be hypnotized and to fulfill his secret wish to be will-less. As Dostoevsky has written, “Man is tormented by no greater anxiety than to find someone quickly to whom he can hand over …

Crocodile Tears for Venezuela

On 26 February, Stephen Hickey, UK political coordinator at the United Nations, delivered a statement at the Security Council briefing on Venezuela that put the blame for the situation in that country on its government. He said that years of misrule and corruption have wrecked the Venezuelan economy and that the actions of the “Maduro regime” have led to economic collapse.

Book Review: Propaganda Blitz – How Corporate Media Distort Reality

We’ve heard a good deal of late about Western democracy, and I for one don’t knock it. I think it an excellent idea, but wouldn’t it require an informed electorate? And wouldn’t that require a media untainted by power and unfettered by any ties other than to truth? Truth in the sense of accuracy and immunity from entrenched interest; truth in the sense of facts and interpretations offered with neither fear nor favour on matters vital to the common good – like climate change, waging war, and levels of inequality both morally indefensible and socially dysfunctional?

Lift the ban on communications! Free Julian Assange!

by James Coga, via WSWS June 6 will mark 10 weeks since the Ecuadorian government blocked all communication by WikiLeaks’ editor Julian Assange with the outside world, including personal visitors. Assange has been trapped inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012, when Quito granted him asylum in the face of a legal witch-hunt by the governments of the United States, Britain and Sweden. Britain was moving to extradite Assange to Sweden on trumped-up allegations of sexual abuse as the first step in transferring him to the US to face charges of espionage, which carry a possible death sentence. Washington had vowed to punish Assange for having exposed before the world war crimes committed by the US in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as US intrigues against other countries. In remarks last Wednesday, Ecuadorian President Lenín Moreno attempted to defend the silencing of Assange. He sought to deny—unconvincingly—that this action was the outcome of his government’s capitulation to pressure and threats by the United States. Moreno put forward an Orwellian conception of freedom of speech …

Wikipedia disappears article on “Philip Cross” & life-bans author

Wkipedia contributor “Mojito Paraiso” recently tried the experiment of creating an entry for “Philip Cross” the apparently pseudonymous editor/contributor who has been a persistent defamer/disinfo source, making rapid-fire and negative editing of the Wikipedia entries for many alt-media and “pro-Russia” journalists and commentators. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the article was disappeared very rapidly. And in what looks a lot like overkill, Mojito_Paraiso was then banned from editing in perpetuity. Apparently defaming John Pilger, George Galloway, Media Lens etc is acceptable Wikiconduct, but drawing attention to the persona responsible is a banning offence Here is the text of the now-vanished entry on Philip Cross. Judge for yourselves if the response was deserved, Philip Cross is a self-described jazz and drama enthusiast. He is also a controversial Wikipedia user and editor who dedicates considerable effort to editing Wikipedia entries for well-known British anti-establishment journalists, bloggers, authors and academics such as: George Galloway Neil Clark Craig Murray Media Lens Gilad Atzmon Tim Hayward Piers Robinson Cross’ edits in relation to the above parties are generally disparaging, however, the quantity and …

WATCH: The White Helmets are a propaganda construct

Founded by a UK mercenary, funded by NATO and EU governments, promoted by a complacent media too hubristic or too atrophied to recognise what they are being paid to shill for, the “White Helmets” may go down as one of the most egregious deceptions in the history of western imperialism. James Corbett looks at the truth behind the lies TRANSCRIPT: In November 2017, journalist Vanessa Beeley gave a groundbreaking presentation to the Swiss Press Club in Geneva on the so-called “Syria Civil Defence” (better known as the “White Helmets”), which bills itself as an impartial group of volunteer search and rescue workers working “to save lives and strengthen communities in Syria.” In her presentation, Beeley demonstrated the connections between this supposedly “neutral” organization, recognized terrorist groups operating in Syria, and the UK government. VANESSA BEELEY: During my time working in East Aleppo, it was clear that the councils were working hand in hand with [Al] Nusra Front. Their centers in each district were always next door to Nusra Front headquarters and white helmet centres, i.e., …

The Rising of Britain’s ‘New Politics’

Delegates to the recent Labour Party conference in the English seaside town of Brighton seemed not to notice a video playing in the main entrance. The world’s third biggest arms manufacturer, BAe Systems, supplier to Saudi Arabia, was promoting its guns, bombs, missiles, naval ships and fighter aircraft.

It seemed a perfidious symbol of a party in which millions of Britons now invest their political hopes. Once the preserve of Tony Blair, it is now led by Jeremy Corbyn, whose career has been very different and is rare in British establishment politics.

Thinking about Venezuela

by Philip Roddis, from Steel City Scribblings One reason Maduro is despised by the opposition is he refuses to follow the neoliberal economic prescription of austerity, privatization, deregulation, etc. Such refusal makes Venezuela almost unique in Latin America now. As Brazilian professor Dawisson Belem Lopes has written, “Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Colombia, Paraguay and Peru have proud neoliberals serving as presidents these days,” even though the “neoliberal experience of the 1990s was disastrous for Latin Americans.”CounterPunch, August 11, 2017 “We’re all over the world and have troops all over the world”, said Trump. “Venezuela is not very far away and the people are suffering and dying. We have many options for Venezuela including a possible military option if necessary.” Guardian, August 12, 2017 It never happened. Nothing happened. Even while it was happening it wasn’t happening. The crimes of the United States have been systematic but few have talked about them. America has exercised a clinical manipulation of power while masquerading as force for universal good. It’s a brilliant act of hypnosis, language employed to keep …

How the World May End

by John Pilger, via Consortium News, August 4, 2017 The U.S. submarine captain says, “We’ve all got to die one day, some sooner and some later. The trouble always has been that you’re never ready, because you don’t know when it’s coming. Well, now we do know and there’s nothing to be done about it.” Gregory Peck in a scene from the 1959 movie, “On the Beach,” showing how a nuclear war ends life on the planet. He says he will be dead by September. It will take about a week to die, though no one can be sure. Animals live the longest. The war was over in a month. The United States, Russia and China were the protagonists. It is not clear if it was started by accident or mistake. There was no victor. The Northern Hemisphere is contaminated and lifeless now. A curtain of radioactivity is moving south towards Australia and New Zealand, southern Africa and South America. By September, the last cities, towns and villages will succumb. As in the north, most …

Palestine is Still the Issue

When I first went to Palestine as a young reporter in the 1960s, I stayed on a kibbutz. The people I met were hard-working, spirited and called themselves socialists. I liked them. One evening at dinner, I asked about the silhouettes of people in the far distance, beyond our perimeter. “Arabs”, they said, “nomads”. The words were almost spat out. Israel, they said, meaning Palestine, had been mostly wasteland and one of the great feats of the Zionist enterprise was to turn the desert green. They gave as an example their crop of Jaffa oranges, which was exported to the rest of the world. What a triumph against the odds of nature and humanity’s neglect.

Terror in Britain: What did the Prime Minister Know?

by John Pilger The unsayable in Britain’s general election campaign is this. The causes of the Manchester atrocity, in which 22 mostly young people were murdered by a jihadist, are being suppressed to protect the secrets of British foreign policy. Critical questions – such as why the security service MI5 maintained terrorist “assets” in Manchester and why the government did not warn the public of the threat in their midst – remain unanswered, deflected by the promise of an internal “review”. The alleged suicide bomber, Salman Abedi, was part of an extremist group, the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, that thrived in Manchester and was cultivated and used by MI5 for more than 20 years. The LIFG is proscribed by Britain as a terrorist organisation which seeks a “hardline Islamic state” in Libya and “is part of the wider global Islamist extremist movement, as inspired by al-Qaida”. The “smoking gun” is that when Theresa May was Home Secretary, LIFG jihadists were allowed to travel unhindered across Europe and encouraged to engage in “battle”: first to remove …

John Pilger: The Hijacking of Feminism

Today’s liberal feminism is a sinister 21st century variant of historical feminism. It is one key apparatus of many currently being utilized by the capitalist system rooted in patriarchy, misogyny and racism. This nefarious system employs trillions of dollars funneled through the non-profit industrial complex (via foundations) to protect and expand these formidable power structures. Today’s liberal feminism is a racist fascism, bound by whiteness, privilege and class, that markets reformism and accommodationism under the clever guise of grassroots activism.

This week the issue is not Trump. It is ourselves.

by John Pilger On the day President Trump is inaugurated, thousands of writers in the United States will express their indignation. “In order for us to heal and move forward…”, say Writers Resist, “we wish to bypass direct political discourse, in favour of an inspired focus on the future, and how we, as writers, can be a unifying force for the protection of democracy.” And: “We urge local organizers and speakers to avoid using the names of politicians or adopting ‘anti’ language as the focus for their Writers Resist event. It’s important to ensure that nonprofit organizations, which are prohibited from political campaigning, will feel confident participating in and sponsoring these events.” Thus, real protest is to be avoided, for it is not tax exempt. Compare such drivel with the declarations of the Congress of American Writers, held at Carnegie Hall, New York, in 1935, and again two years later. They were electric events, with writers discussing how they could confront ominous events in Abyssinia, China and Spain. Telegrams from Thomas Mann, C Day Lewis, …

John Pilger: ‘The truth is… there was no one to vote for’ (Going Underground US election special)

Afshin Rattansi goes underground on the US election results. Author and documentary filmmaker John Pilger tells us what has been revealed by Trump winning the US election, plus what does a Donald Trump presidency mean for the Middle East.

VIDEO: John Pilger in conversation with Julian Assange (2011)

This extended interview was filmed during the making of Pilger’s documentary The War You Don’t See in 2011

The Last Dream: other people’s wars (1988)

In this documentary from 1988 John Pilger looks at the complicated relationship Australians have with war

Why the British said no to Europe

by John Pilger The majority vote by Britons to leave the European Union was an act of raw democracy. Millions of ordinary people refused to be bullied, intimidated and dismissed with open contempt by their presumed betters in the major parties, the leaders of the business and banking oligarchy and the media. This was, in great part, a vote by those angered and demoralised by the sheer arrogance of the apologists for the “remain” campaign and the dismemberment of a socially just civil life in Britain. The last bastion of the historic reforms of 1945, the National Health Service, has been so subverted by Tory and Labour-supported privateers it is fighting for its life. A forewarning came when the Treasurer, George Osborne, the embodiment of both Britain’s ancient regime and the banking mafia in Europe, threatened to cut £30 billion from public services if people voted the wrong way; it was blackmail on a shocking scale. Immigration was exploited in the campaign with consummate cynicism, not only by populist politicians from the lunar right, but …

Silencing America as It Prepares for War

Returning to the United States in an election year, I am struck by the silence. I have covered four presidential campaigns, starting with 1968; I was with Robert Kennedy when he was shot and I saw his assassin, preparing to kill him. It was a baptism in the American way, along with the salivating violence of the Chicago police at the Democratic Party’s rigged convention. The great counter revolution had begun.

A World War Has Begun: Break the Silence

I have been filming in the Marshall Islands, which lie north of Australia, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Whenever I tell people where I have been, they ask, “Where is that?” If I offer a clue by referring to “Bikini”, they say, “You mean the swimsuit. Few seem aware that the bikini swimsuit was named to celebrate the nuclear explosions that destroyed Bikini island.