fredag den 28. januar 2011

Venstres udenrigspolitiske ordfører: Vi skal takke Bush for frihedskamp i Mellemøsten

Venstres udenrigspolitiske ordfører forsøger i et interview i Berlingske Tidende, at hvidvaske Bush og mener, at "demokratiseringen" af Irak - læs: det statsterroristiske massemord på Iraks befolkning - er blandt årsagerne til at man nu ser oprør i Ægypten og Tunesien.

En ret interessant holdning i lys af, at Bush-administrationerne aktivt støttede diktatorerne i både Tunesien og Ægypten. Desværre er det næppe blot mangel på viden der ligger til grund for hans udtalelse, for han er trods alt næppe ignorant, så der er sandsynligvis tale om noget så fuldstændig utilgiveligt som et bevidst forsøg på at legitimere en amerikansk præsident som har forvoldt hundredetusinders død og ødelæggelsen af mange fleres liv. Ikke dermed sagt at det er specielt overraskende, for legitimering af statslige voldshandlinger er vel desværre hvad man kan forvente af en udenrigspolitisk ordfører som selv stemte for at Danmark skulle deltage i angrebskrigen mod Irak.

torsdag den 27. januar 2011

Futuristic Design: Floating City for Climate Refugees.


Breakthrough promises $1.50 per gallon synthetic gasoline with no carbon emissions

UK-based Cella Energy has developed a synthetic fuel that could lead to US$1.50 per gallon gasoline. Apart from promising a future transportation fuel with a stable price regardless of oil prices, the fuel is hydrogen based and produces no carbon emissions when burned. The technology is based on complex hydrides, and has been developed over a four year top secret program at the prestigious Rutherford Appleton Laboratory near Oxford. Early indications are that the fuel can be used in existing internal combustion engined vehicles without engine modification.

According to Stephen Voller CEO at Cella Energy, the technology was developed using advanced materials science, taking high energy materials and encapsulating them using a nanostructuring technique called coaxial electrospraying.

“We have developed new micro-beads that can be used in an existing gasoline or petrol vehicle to replace oil-based fuels,” said Voller. “Early indications are that the micro-beads can be used in existing vehicles without engine modification.”

“The materials are hydrogen-based, and so when used produce no carbon emissions at the point of use, in a similar way to electric vehicles”, said Voller.

The technology has been developed over a four-year top secret programme at the prestigious Rutherford Appleton Laboratory near Oxford, UK.

The development team is led by Professor Stephen Bennington in collaboration with scientists from University College London and Oxford University.

Professor Bennington, Chief Scientific Officer at Cella Energy said, “our technology is based on materials called complex hydrides that contain hydrogen. When encapsulated using our unique patented process, they are safer to handle than regular gasoline.”


Anbefaling af mediekritisk analyse.

Hermed de varmeste anbefalinger af en fremragende mediekritisk analyse med titlen "Krig er..." af mediekritikeren Uffe Kaels Auring som driver

onsdag den 26. januar 2011

Erich Fromm on doubt.

“To ‛doubt’ [..] does not imply a psychological state of inability to arrive at decisions or convictions, as is the case in obsessional doubt, but the readiness and capacity for crititical questioning of the assumptions and institutions which have become idols under the name of common sense, logic, and what is supposed to be ‛natural’. This radical questioning is possible only if one does not take the concepts of one's society or even of an entire historical period – like Western culture since the Renaissance - for granted, and furthermore if one enlarges the scope of one's awareness and penetrates into the unconscious aspects of one's thinking. Radical doubt is an act of uncovering and discovering; it is the dawning of the awareness that the Emperor is naked, and that his splendid garments are nothing but the product of one's fantasy.”

Erich Fromm i sit forord til Ivan Illich “Celebration of Awareness”.

tirsdag den 25. januar 2011

ACLU: ‘Unjustified homicides’ go unpunished at military prisons.

The American Civil Liberties Union has said it identified 25 to 30 cases of "unjustified homicide" in US-run prisons in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay.

After filing a Freedom of Information request in 2009, the civil rights group last week obtained 2,624 pages of documents from the US military detailing investigations into 190 deaths in custody at prisons in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as the detention center in Guantanamo Bay.

The Defense Department says many of those deaths were due to illness, natural causes or inmate-on-inmate violence, but the ACLU alleges it has identified more than two dozen deaths it sees as being unjustified.

"So far, the documents released by the government raise more questions than they answer, but they do confirm one troubling fact: that no senior officials have been held to account for the widespread abuse of detainees," the ACLU said in a statement, as quoted at CNN. "Without real accountability for these abuses, we risk inviting more abuse in the future."

The ACLU noted that heart problems accounted for more than 25 percent of deaths, an unusually high number that "could potentially raise serious questions about the conditions of confinement or interrogation of the detainees."

The civil rights group says that while many of the deaths were previously known, some had never been revealed publicly. CNN reports:

In one such case, a detainee was killed by an unnamed sergeant who walked into a room where the detainee was lying wounded "and assaulted him ... then shot him twice thus killing him," one of the investigating documents says. The sergeant than instructed the other soldiers present to lie about the incident. Later, the document says an unnamed corporal then shot the deceased detainee in the head after finding his corpse.
In another example, documents note a soldier "committed the offense of murder when he shot and killed an unarmed Afghan male." But, according to the ACLU, the individual was found not guilty of murder by general court-martial.
The Defense Department defended its record, saying that the very existence of the thousands of pages of documents shows it takes in-custody deaths seriously. Army spokesman Lt. Col. David H. Patterson said that of the 190 deaths, 43 had US soldiers or personnel as suspects, resulting in 13 findings of probable cause for murder, and 19 separate convictions.

The ACLU's document release came the same week as the Obama administration let it be known it plans to resume the use of military commissions to try terrorism suspects at Guantanamo Bay, a move the ACLU described "strik[ing] a major blow to any efforts to restore the rule of law."

"The decision to proceed with commissions ... raises serious questions about whether commissions are being used as a forum to hide the use of torture and base convictions on evidence that would be too untrustworthy to be admitted in any real court," said Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU's National Security Project.

"Unlike federal courts, which have well-established rules of procedure and evidence, the military commissions rules do not comply with US and international law," Shamsi added.


Fødevarespekulanternes hazardspil med andres liv.

I en forhåbentlig opsigtsvækkende artikel i den britiske avis The Guardian kunne man i går læse en forstyrrende artikel om hvordan fødevarespekulanter spiller hazard med fattige menneskers liv.

Just under three years ago, people in the village of Gumbi in western Malawi went unexpectedly hungry. Not like Europeans do if they miss a meal or two, but that deep, gnawing hunger that prevents sleep and dulls the senses when there has been no food for weeks.

Oddly, there had been no drought, the usual cause of malnutrition and hunger in southern Africa, and there was plenty of food in the markets. For no obvious reason the price of staple foods such as maize and rice nearly doubled in a few months. Unusually, too, there was no evidence that the local merchants were hoarding food. It was the same story in 100 other developing countries. There were food riots in more than 20 countries and governments had to ban food exports and subsidise staples heavily.

The explanation offered by the UN and food experts was that a "perfect storm" of natural and human factors had combined to hyper-inflate prices. US farmers, UN agencies said, had taken millions of acres of land out of production to grow biofuels for vehicles, oil and fertiliser prices had risen steeply, the Chinese were shifting to meat-eating from a vegetarian diet, and climate-change linked droughts were affecting major crop-growing areas. The UN said that an extra 75m people became malnourished because of the price rises.

But a new theory is emerging among traders and economists. The same banks, hedge funds and financiers whose speculation on the global money markets caused the sub-prime mortgage crisis are thought to be causing food prices to yo-yo and inflate. The charge against them is that by taking advantage of the deregulation of global commodity markets they are making billions from speculating on food and causing misery around the world.

As food prices soar again to beyond 2008 levels, it becomes clear that everyone is now being affected. Food prices are now rising by up to 10% a year in Britain and Europe. What is more, says the UN, prices can be expected to rise at least 40% in the next decade.

læs resten her.

mandag den 24. januar 2011

The Palestine Papers

The biggest leak of confidential material in the history of the Israel-Palestine conflict is shedding new light on the status of the peace talks. Over the next couple of weeks the British newspaper The Guardian will break stories based upon the leakage. This may prove to be very interesting. Be sure to follow the developments on either The Guardians homepage or on Al Jazeera.

Putins Palace.

A Russian version of Wikileaks calling themselves RuLeaks, has publicised a series of pictures which allegedly depict Vladimir Putin's private castle in Russia.

See them here.

torsdag den 20. januar 2011

To år efter: Ingen fornyelse i udenrigspolitikken.

I anledning af, at det idag er to år siden Obama holdt sin tiltrædelsestale som USAs 44. præsident, har jeg skrevet en artikel til Modkraft.dks webmagasin Kontradoxa omhandlende hans administrations foreløbige udenrigspolitik, nærmere bestemt hans regerings fortsættelse af den amerikanske tradition for at støtte formålstjenstlige diktaturer og repressive regimer.

Læs den på

torsdag den 13. januar 2011

USAs skatteminister Timothy Geithner: USA er insolvent.

Økonomiprofessor emeritus Michael S. Rozeff har skrevet en artikel om USAs økonomiske problemer på på det libertarianske site

The U.S. government is insolvent. Who says so? Timothy F. Geithner, the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury.

Geithner sent a letter to Congress on Jan. 6, 2011 asking for the debt limit to be raised. If it is not raised, he warned, the U.S. will default on its debt. In his words:

Never in our history has Congress failed to increase the debt limit when necessary. Failure to raise the limit would precipitate a default by the United States."

He didn’t say that the government will be inconvenienced. He didn’t say that the government would be forced to muddle through by delaying payments, raising taxes, and cutting non-obligatory programs and services. He said the government will default. This means that the government doesn’t have enough cash to pay its obligations to the many and sundry persons to whom it owes cash unless Congress authorizes an issue of even more debt.

After the government issues the new debt, its overall debt will be even higher than before. Unless its obligations that require cash payments are reduced, or unless it finds new sources of revenue, or unless the interest rates that it pays decline, the same situation will surely occur again and occur even faster because its overall debt will have risen. It will run short of cash to pay its obligations.

Læs mere her.

lørdag den 8. januar 2011

Peak Oil and a Changing Climate

USA glemte at sikre våbenfabrik i Irak.

Den britiske avis The Guardian bragte i går en meget interessant artikel om hvordan man fra amerikansk side ikke formåede at sikre en gigantisk våbenfabrik udenfor Baghdad umiddelbart efter invasionen af Irak selvom man var informeret om dens eksistens og indhold. Dette forvoldte at Al-Qaeda i Irak fik fingrene i 40.000 tons højeksplosivt materiale. Læs mere her.

tirsdag den 4. januar 2011

Living in the End Times According to Slavoj Zizek

Dokumentar om velfærdsstatens historie.

Jonathan Cook om mediebias i Israel/Palæstina-konflikten.

Den britiske journalist Jonathan Cook, som har skrevet ganske omfattende om Israel/Palæstina konflikten, har skrevet et længere essay i hvilket han redegør for medier-nes bias i dækningen af konflikten. Den lange version (27 sider) kan læses her. Den korte version kan læses her.

Dronekrigen i Pakistan har massive civile tabstal.

Konsekvenserne af Obama-administrationens videreførelse af den uofficielle (læs: aldrig erklærede) dronekrig i de Nord-Pakistanske stammeområder er ikke overraskende omfattende civile tabstal. Den indiske avis New Kerala omtaler flere nye undersøgelser som alle peger på, at dette er tilfældet:

As many as 2,043 people, mostly civilians, were killed in US drone attacks in northwestern parts of Pakistan during the last five years, a research has revealed.

The yearly report of Conflict Monitoring Centre (CMC) has termed the CIA drone strikes as an 'assassination campaign turning out to be revenge campaign', and showed that 2010 was the deadliest year ever of causalities resulted in drone-hits in Pakistan.

According to the report, 134 drone attacks were reported in Pakistan's FATA region in 2010 alone, inflicting 929 causalities. December 17 was the deadliest day of 2010 when three drone attacks killed 54 people in Khyber Agency.

Regarding civilian causalities and attacks on women and children, the report said: "People in the tribal belt usually carry guns and ammunition as a tradition. US drone will identify anyone carrying a gun as a militant and subsequently he will be killed."

Kæmpe Fail i Prostitutionsdebatten.

Fra dagens udgave af Information.

"SF's ligestillingsordfører, Pernille Vigsø Bagge, og medlem af EU-parlamentet for Socialdemokraterne Britta Thomsen påstår, at Holland har en særlig børnehave oprettet til børn af prostituerede, og bruger den som argument mod legalisering af prostitution i Danmark. I Holland har man aldrig hørt om den pågældende børnehave"