News

Thursday, December 18, 2014
German Researchers Discover Security Flaw That Puts Worldwide Network at Risk
German researchers have discovered a new flaw in the global network known as Signalling System 7 (SS7), which could allow hackers and spies to intercept communications on a massive scale, the Washington Post reports . Due to be presented at a hacker conference in Hamburg this month, the research...
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Driven by Climate Change, 'Nuisance' Flooding to Become Commonplace in US Coastal Areas
By 2050, a majority of U.S. coastal areas—including urban centers such as Baltimore, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Boston—will likely be threatened by 30 or more days of flooding each year due to dramatically accelerating sea level rise, according to a new study by the National Oceanic and...
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Senator Warren Takes On TPP
Provisions that could appear in secretly negotiated trade deal would boost corporate power while making it harder to prevent another financial crisis, Sen. Elizabeth Warren has stated. The deal in question is the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), still under negotiations, which President...
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Chevron Halts Arctic Drilling Plans 'Indefinitely'
In a move cheered by environmental groups, Chevron has put its plans to drill for oil in the Arctic "on hold indefinitely," the energy company said Wednesday. It had planned on drilling by 2020 in the Beaufort Sea, but in a letter to Canada's National Energy Board (NEB), Chevron cited "the level of...
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Judge Exonerates 14-Year-Old Boy Executed in 1944
A judge on Wednesday vacated the conviction of George Stinney, Jr., who was executed in 1944 at 14 years old, making him the youngest person put to death in the United States in the 20th century. Circuit Judge Carmen Mullen found "fundamental, Constitutional violations of due process" in Stinney's...
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'A Slap in the Face': Vermont Gov. Jumps Ship on Single-Payer Healthcare
Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin on Wednesday abandoned his plan to create a single-payer healthcare system in his state, saying moving forward at this time would be too costly—a claim critics denounced as "a slap in the face" to Vermonters. The proposal to create a universal, publicly financed...
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Wealth Gap Between Rich and Poor Americans Highest on Record
The gulf between rich and poor people in America has hit a new record. An analysis released Wednesday by Pew Research Center finds that the wealth gap between the top 21 percent of families and everyone else is the widest since the Federal Reserve began collecting such income data 30 years ago...
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Leaked Internal CIA Document Admits US Drone Program "Counterproductive"
Wikileaks on Thursday has made public a never-before-seen internal review conducted by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency that looked at the agency's drone and targeted assassination programs in places like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, and elsewhere. The agency's own analysis, conducted...
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Good News for Greece's Anti-Austerity Left as First Round Election Fails
A first round of elections in the Greek Parliament failed on Wednesday night and that's good news for the nation's ascendent leftist Syriza Party which is surging in public polls for its anti-austerity position on the economy. "The scaremongering of recent days fell on stony ground. The strategy of...
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US/NATO Building "New Berlin Wall" by Expanding Military Footprint: Putin
The U.S. and its NATO allies are building a "new Berlin Wall" by expanding the footprint of their military alliance eastward, said Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday as he railed against destabilizing and counterproductive behavior by western nations over the crisis in Ukraine that has...
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Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Out of Control Fracking Well Forces Evacuations
An out-of-control natural gas fracking well in Monroe County, Ohio forced more than two dozen families from their homes and may pose the threat of an explosion. The blowout at the Triad Hunter-operated well on the Utica Shale happened at approximately 2:00 p.m. EST on December 13, 2014, according...
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'Biggest Fracking Victory Ever!' as New York Bans Dangerous Drilling in State
It's official. New York state will ban fracking. After years of lobbying and aggressive public protest by state residents to make permanent a short-term moratorium on the controversial oil and gas drilling practice, Gov. Andrew Cuomo cited harm to public health as the key reason for the decision to...
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Russian Ruble Continues to Fluctuate, Creating Panic Among Consumers
The Russian ruble seemed to be on the rebound Wednesday, following two days of precipitous decline that prompted economists to predict a total collapse of the national economy while spurring a spending spree by consumers who frantically purchased a range of big-ticket items in a bid to pre-empt...
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Freedom Industries Owners Charged in West Virginia Chemical Spill
Four Freedom Industries owners and managers have been charged with federal violations for their part in the January chemical spill in West Virginia, which saw a large portion of the Elk River contaminated with more than 7,000 gallons of hazardous waste, contaminated the drinking water of 300,000...
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A 'Good Start': Obama Moves to Protect Key Alaskan Waters from Drilling
A pristine and ecologically rich region of Alaska will now be protected from any future oil and gas drilling, President Obama announced late Tuesday after signing an executive memorandum to withdraw roughly 32.5 million acres from potential development. Bristol Bay, part of the North Aleutian Basin...
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Secret WTO Trade Deal Threatens Internet Freedom, New Leak Reveals
Global governments are secretly negotiating a little-known mega trade deal that poses a threat to internet freedoms and boon to corporate interests, analysts warned Wednesday, citing a just-leaked U.S. proposal . The Trade in Services Agreement (TISA), under discussion between a 50-country subset...
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Reflecting 'Global Surge in Authoritarianism,' 2014 Marks a Brutal Year for Journalists
2014 has been a grim year for journalists. Two leading press freedom groups have released their annual reports on the abuse and imprisonment of journalists around the globe and the evidence paints a world increasingly "barbaric" for those seeking to report on global events. Reflecting what the...
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Where is All the 'Missing' Plastic? At the Bottom of the Ocean, Study Finds
Billions of tiny plastic fragments have accumulated in the deep sea, finds a new study published this week in the journal Royal Society Open Science , raising concerns about the organisms that live there, such as coral and bottom-of-the-food-chain invertebrates. In an attempt to find evidence of "...
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US and Cuba to Restore Diplomatic Relations in Historic Overhaul
Update: Following Wednesday's momentous prisoner swap, U.S. officials said the country will restore full diplomatic relations with Cuba for the first time in more than 50 years, including re-opening of the American embassy in Havana which has been shuttered for nearly half a century. In a speech on...
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NY State Official Raises Alarm on Charter Schools — And Gets Ignored
Add another voice to those warning about the lack of financial oversight for charter schools. One of New York state's top fiscal monitors told ProPublica that audits by his office have found "practices that are questionable at best, illegal at worst" at some charter schools. Pete Grannis, New York...
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Amid Grief, Warnings That Pakistan Gov't Retaliation Could Violate Human Rights
As people across Pakistan and the world mourn the at least 148 people—most of them children— killed by Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) fighters in the city of Peshawar on Tuesday, critics warn that retaliatory measures by the Pakistani government could lead to further human rights violations. On...
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Despite Warnings of Future War, Obama to Impose New Russian Sanctions
The White House announced late Tuesday that President Obama will sign into a law a provocative, yet largely ignored, bill passed by both chambers of Congress last week that critics say increases the chances of a future military confrontation with Russia. Despite some reservations voiced by the...
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Murder in the Rainforest: Local Activists and the Global Politics of Climate Change
On the morning of December 5th, a dark piece of news began circulating at the U.N. climate talks in Lima: The body of José Isidro Tendetza Antún, a leading Ecuadorian indigenous-rights and anti-mining campaigner, had been found in a riverside grave near his village, his remains bound in rope,...
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Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Israel Seeks US Block of Palestinian Bid at UN for Statehood
Palestinian officials have said they will push the United Nations Security Council to vote on a resolution on Wednesday to end the Israeli occupation by 2016. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made his opposition to the move clear. During talks in Rome on Monday, Netanyahu said he would...
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NFL Star Refuses to Apologize After Plea for Justice for Police Victims
Cleveland Browns receiver Andrew Hawkins says he should not have to apologize for wearing a T-shirt that called for "Justice for Tamir Rice and John Crawford," two Ohio victims of recent police killings. Hawkins' shirt, which he sported while walking onto the field before Sunday's game against the...
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Canada Has Done Little to Save the Endangered Caribou, Report Finds
In its second annual review of government efforts to conserve Canada's boreal caribou, the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) finds that threats to this species from industrial development—and especially from the fossil fuels sector—have continued to increase while conservation and...
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'Do No Harm': Doctors Blast Medical Professionals for Role In CIA Torture Regime
A group of doctors and ethicists has released a searing report (pdf) slamming medical professionals for playing an "essential" role in the CIA's torture program, thereby violating "the most fundamental duty of the healing professions" and potentially committing crimes against humanity. Published by...
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Venezuela's Maduro: 'US Knows Where It Can Stick Its Sanctions'
Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro denounced U.S. sanctions on Monday and told a crowd of supporters in Caracas that the recent police killings in New York and Ferguson were a sign of an "imperialist police state." Sparking Maduro's comments at the rally to mark the 15th anniversary of Venezuela'...
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Contraception Is Not Abortion, But Right Wing Has Plan to Convince You Otherwise
Anti-abortion groups routinely—yet selectively and strategically—conflate contraception and abortion as part of more wide-reaching agenda to curtail reproductive rights overall, according to a new policy analysis by Joerg Dreweke for the New York-based Guttmacher Institute. The article, "...
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DOJ Says It Will Subpoena NYT Reporter James Risen
The United States government has confirmed that it will seek limited testimony from New York Times reporter James Risen, according to court documents filed Tuesday, in regards to his relationship with the alleged CIA leaker Jeffery Sterling. Ahead of the official filing, press freedom advocates had...
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Bush 3.0? Jeb to 'Actively Explore' Presidential Run
Jeb Bush announced Tuesday morning that he will "actively explore the possibility of running for president of the United States." The former governor of Florida and son of former President George H.W. Bush made the announcement on social media, posting messages to Twitter and Facebook that he had...
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'Fight For Justice Is Not Over': Chicago Survivors of Police Torture Demand Reparations
Survivors of Chicago police torture and their allies are taking to the streets Tuesday to demand justice and reparations from the city whose responsibility it was to oversee the perpetrators. Former Chicago police commander Jon Burge, who presided over the torture by white officers of more than 100...
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Sanders Has a Couple More Good Ideas: Break Up Big Banks, Expand Social Security
Promising to put forth and lobby on behalf of two bold progressive policy ideas in the months ahead, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has announced his intention to push for new pieces of legislation in the next session, one of which would break up the nation's largest Wall Street banks and another that...
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Scores of Children Among Dead After Assault on Military School in Pakistan
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.... As many as 126 people are dead, including more than 84 identified as children, in Pakistan on Tuesday after Taliban soldiers stormed a military-run school located in the northwestern city of Peshawar. At least five members of the Pakistan...
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Monday, December 15, 2014
Advocates of CIA Torture Victims Demand: 'Charge Them, Or Let Them Go'
In the wake of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee's bombshell report last week, advocates for those who were victims of the CIA's brutal torture program have taken up a renewed call: "Charge them or let them go." In a piece published on Monday, Helen Duffy, attorney for Abu Zubaydah, who was...
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'Catastrophe': Oil Spill at Bangladesh World Heritage Site
Fears of long-lasting ecological damage at a UNESCO World Heritage site are mounting following a massive oil spill into a river in Bangladesh. The disaster began early Tuesday last week when an empty vessel struck a tanker carrying an estimated 92,500 gallons of oil, causing the fuel-filled vessel...
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Offering 'Example of Resistance,' Nationwide Strike Against Austerity Hits Belgium
A series of austerity measures sparked a nationwide strike in Belgium on Monday, bringing transportation services to a halt and forcing the closures of some businesses. Hundreds of flights, trains, trams and buses were canceled, ports were blockaded and hundreds of factories were closed in the...
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Sandy Hook Families Sue Gunmaker for Selling Weapon with Single Purpose: 'Mass Shootings'
Families of those killed in the Newtown, Connecticut school shooting tragedy are suing the companies that produce and sell the Bushmaster AR-15 rifle, charging that those parties are purposely making and distributing a weapon built to inflict "unparalleled civilian carnage." The suit , filed on...
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Demanding End to War on Black People, Oakland Protesters Blockade Police Department
Bearing a banner declaring "Black and Breathing," protesters surrounded and temporarily blockaded the Oakland Police Department headquarters on Monday morning while shutting down a nearby freeway entrance to demand "an immediate end to the war on Black people." "We fight for justice for every...
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US Supreme Court Blocks Arizona's 'Dangerous and Misguided' Abortion Restriction
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday blocked Arizona from enforcing a law that would severely restrict patient access to medical abortion pills. By refusing to hear (pdf) the state's appeal, the Court will prevent the law from going into effect, although the legislation will remain intact. Arizona's...
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Public Tax Dollars Financing Oil-By-Rail Expansion
A series of fiery, and at times deadly , oil train derailments and explosions—from Virginia to North Dakota to Quebec—has sparked concerns about the ever-increasing use of rail to transport crude through North America. Reporting by Reuters released Monday reveals that, despite this alarm, "tens of...
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National Lawyers Guild Challenges NYPD on Use of Sound Cannons Against Peaceful Protesters
The New York Police Department is being challenged by legal advocates for what they say was the department's use of untested, unregulated military-grade sound cannons during civil rights marches in Manhattan earlier this month. In a letter (pdf) sent to the office of Police Commissioner Bill...
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Calls for 'Torture Team' Prosecutions Persist as Cheney Brags "I'd Do It Again"
Former vice president of the United States Dick Cheney told NBC's Chuck Todd on Sunday that he'd "do it again in a minute." And what about President Obama's predecessor, George W. Bush? Said Cheney: "He authorized it. He Approved it." "It would be comforting to dismiss Cheney as a historical oddity...
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US Marine Charged with Murder in Philippines
Joseph Scott Pemberton, a U.S. Marine, has been charged by Philippines prosecutors with murder for allegedly killing Jennifer Laude, a 26-year-old transgender Filipina woman, in October of this year. Laude was brutally beaten and murdered in the port city of Olongapo on October 2 and Pemberton was...
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Sunday, December 14, 2014
Bush 'Intimately Involved' with CIA Torture, says Rove
Former President George W. Bush knew and was "intimately involved" in the CIA's practice of torture, former Bush adviser and Republican strategist Karl Rove confirmed on Fox News Sunday. Despite arguments made in the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee's report that the CIA had not alerted Bush and...
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Wall Street Wins, Democrats Sing as Compromise Spending Bill Passes Senate
After much wrangling and threats of an alleged government shutdown, the U.S. Senate passed a $1.1 trillion spending bill which critics warn contains provisions that favor Wall Street, wealthy donors, the fossil fuel industry, as well as endless war . Voting 56-40 to advance the bill to President...
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'A Roadmap to Global Burning': COP20 Closes With Even Weaker Climate Pact
After two weeks of negotiations, the world community has yet again failed to take any meaningful actions to prevent landmark global warming and instead has produced a "roadmap to global burning," leading climate campaigners lamented upon the close of the United Nations COP20 climate talks in Lima,...
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Saturday, December 13, 2014
Crippling Dominance of Big Pharma, Indian Judge Blocks Bayer's Drug Monopoly Bid
In a move that advocates are saying is a "momentous" win for public health, an Indian court on Friday rejected a bid from multinational pharmaceutical giant Bayer to block a local generic drug company from mimicking their costly cancer drug. Bayer had attempted to appeal a 2012 decision by India's...
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'We Will Have Justice': Tens of Thousands March in Day of Resistance
Adding their voices to the growing call for justice, tens of thousands of protesters will take to the streets on Saturday in a National Day of Resistance against police brutality, racial profiling and American's broken criminal justice system. Marches in New York City and Washington D.C. are...
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'Victory' Declared as Source Reveals DOJ Will Not Force James Risen Testimony
In what supporters are calling a "big victory for defying illegitimate authority," the Department of Justice will reportedly not force New York Times journalist James Risen to testify against a source in court, an unnamed official told news outlets on Friday. According to a senior Justice...
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Friday, December 12, 2014
Groups: Keep Fossil Fuel Industry Out of Climate Talks
As the UN climate talks wind down in Lima, Peru this week, climate activists are calling on officials to keep future negotiations free from the influence of the very industry causing the climate crisis. The activists say that as at last year's climate talks in Poland, the industry has been allowed...
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Progressives to Dems on Budget Deal: 'We Will Remember This Betrayal'
The $1.1 trillion spending bill which narrowly passed the House of Representative last night is expected to receive a vote—and likely pass—in the U.S. Senate sometime Friday or Saturday despite widespread condemnation of the package that will fund the government through most of next year. "Congress...
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Moyers & Company: Democrats, Not Just Republicans, Are Bowing Down to Wall Street
Negotiators from the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) were in Washington this week for a new round of talks which they hope will lead them closer to agreement on the trade deal. President Obama has called passage of TPP a “high priority.” This week, Bill speaks with outspoken veteran...
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In Oregon GMO Labeling Battle, Supporters Concede Loss But Not Defeat
Advocates of an Oregon measure that would have required genetically modified foods to be labeled conceded loss but not defeat on Thursday. Results from the November vote showed the Measure 92 opposition winning by just over 800 votes, a slim enough margin to trigger an automatic recount. But...
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(Photo: JasonOX4/flickr/cc) Corporations Using Court Decision As Shield Against Human Rights Abuse Charges... And It's Working
A 2013 Supreme Court decision that makes it much harder to sue foreign companies for human rights abuses is now being used by U.S. corporations to dodge culpability, a new Reuters analysis reveals. Last year's ruling in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum tossed out a lawsuit levied by Nigerian...
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From Spot Where Eric Garner Died, Daughter Says 'I Will Be His Voice Because He Cannot Speak Anymore'
The daughter of one of the men whose recent death at the hands of police has sparked a growing national movement against police brutality and racism led a small, yet poignant march in Staten Island, New York on Thursday night and then laid down in the spot where her father lost his life after he...
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Hunger, Homelessness on the Rise in Cities Nationwide: Report
Food insecurity and homelessness in cities around the country spiked in the past year, a new report released Thursday has found. According to the United States Conference of Mayors' annual Hunger and Homelessness Survey (pdf), 71 percent of the 25 cities surveyed saw an increase in requests for...
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'Così Non Va!': General Strike Against Austerity Sweeps Italy
Work actions and protests sweep 50 cities to oppose Prime Minister Matteo Renzi's new law that cuts back worker protections
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Kerry Offers 'Fancy Words,' But US Inaction Blasted as Lima Talks Limp To End
As the U.N. Conference of the Parties (COP20) talks enter their last scheduled day in Lima, Peru on Friday, remarks delivered by U.S. Secretary of State late Thursday to climate negotiators from around the world, though welcomed by some, seemed to do very little in terms of moving the talks closer...
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Buried Within Omnibus Bill, a 'Long-Term Blank Check for War Spending'
The government funding bill that narrowly passed the House of Representatives on Thursday has been widely criticized, including from within Congress , as a give-away to Wall Street. However, its 1,600 pages raise numerous other red flags for activists and analysts, including a bloated military...
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Thursday, December 11, 2014
CIA Head Speaks Out on Torture Report But Question Remains: 'What's Going to Happen?'
"Deceit and obfuscation." That's what CIA Director John Brennan offered Thursday, one observer says, at a press conference just days after the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on his agency's torture program in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks. Brennan, who said there's been "...
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Funding Bill Passes House; Wall Street Wins; "Kind of Compromise" Obama Loves
Update (9:53 PM EST) : The Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives passed a controversial spending bill late on Thursday night with a final vote of 219 to 206. 139 Democrats opposed the bill because, as the Huffington Post reports , they "were bitterly opposed to two attached riders...
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Torture Report Raises Hopes, Offers Ammo for Bush & Co. Prosecutions
Few if any people, given recent history and the consistent position of the Obama administration, are expecting that former President Bush or any of his top officials will ever see the inside of a U.S. courtroom (not to mention a prison cell) for their role in authorizing the torture of suspected...
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With Help From USDA, Factory Farms 'Masquerading' Products as Organic
More than a dozen factory farms producing dairy and meat products for stores nationwide engaged in widespread organic fraud for years as the USDA stood idly by, an agriculture industry watchdog said on Thursday. A months-long investigation by the Cornucopia Institute discovered that 14 farms around...
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In Nicaragua, Protesters Vow to Fight Giant Canal 'With Their Lives'
Chanting "No to the canal!" thousands protested in Nicaragua's capital on Wednesday over a plan that threatens an environmental and land rights catastrophe. The 173-mile, $50 billion canal would link the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, passing through Lake Nicaragua. Construction for the canal, which...
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In Cities Across the Globe, 'We Can't Breathe' Becomes Rallying Call
Eric Garner's dying words of "I can't breathe" continue to echo around the world. Hundreds of people chanted this last plea as they staged a die-in at a west London mall on Wednesday night, in solidarity with the loved ones of Garner and the mass mobilizations for racial justice that continue to...
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Will James Risen be Forced to Testify? DOJ Given Deadline in Critical Press Freedom Case
The Obama administration has less than one week to decide whether it intends to force New York Times reporter James Risen to testify at the trial of a CIA whistleblower, after a federal judge ordered on Tuesday that the U.S. "commit to a position" by 10 a.m. on December 16. "Since June 2, 2014, the...
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Vows of 'We'll Be Back' As Police Clear Hong Kong Protest Camp
Police moved to clear the last remaining pro-democracy " umbrella movement " protest camp in Hong Kong on Thursday, as demonstrators vowed, "We'll be back!" Lawmakers, student organizers, and even a pop singer were among those arrested at the more than 11-week occupation, more than 1000-people...
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To Keep Climate Promise, Canada Must Build on Successful Local Strategies
Adopting provincial strategies that have been shown to work—such as implementing a carbon tax, placing a regulatory cap on emissions, and eliminating coal-fired power plants—could help Canada keep climate promises it will likely otherwise break, says a report issued Wednesday by the Vancouver-based...
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UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: There Should Be "No Impunity" for US Torture
UNITED NATIONS - The timing was inadvertently impeccable as two stinging reports on harsh interrogation techniques – by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in the United States and former military regimes in Brazil – were released on the eve of the 30th anniversary of the U.N. Convention Against...
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#WhiteCoatsforBlackLives: Medical Students Stage Nationwide Die-Ins
Medical students at universities across the United States held dramatic die-in protests on Wednesday to show their solidarity with a growing protest movement against police brutality and other forms of systematic inequality taking place in low-income areas and communities of color nationwide...
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Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Marching in Defense of Mother Earth, Thousands in Lima Demand Climate Justice Now!
Thousands of climate activists took to the streets of Lima, Peru on Wednesday in a march whose message was as bright as its colors. Organized as "A March in Defense of Mother Earth," the event , which coincides with the International Day of Human Rights, was part of the Peoples' Summit —a...
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'The CIA Is Lying': On Senate Floor, Udall Blasts Continued Torture Cover-Up
In an impassioned speech on the U.S. Senate floor on Wednesday morning, outgoing Senator Mark Udall (D-Colo.) reiterated his call for the resignation of CIA Director John Brennan and blasted the CIA and the White House for dodging not just accountability , but also the truth. While he acknowledged...
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Demanding Free Speech Rights, Maine Students Proclaim #BlackLivesMatter
A group of high school students from Lewiston, Maine is speaking out after school officials impeded their attempts to show solidarity for the growing racial justice movement in the U.S., in a move which they say infringes on their First Amendment rights. The Lewiston High School students had...
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Secretary of State John Kerry Pushes for Endless War Authorization
Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday urged lawmakers to act at their "bipartisan best" and authorize new power for the U.S. to wage, without geographical constraints, open-ended war on Islamic militants. Kerry made the comments in testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. His...
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FBI: Freedom Industries President Committed Criminal Fraud in West Virgina Chemical Spill
The former president of Freedom Industries, the company responsible for a massive chemical spill in West Virginia in January, lied to investigators about his involvement with the company to protect his personal wealth, the FBI has said . In a complaint (pdf) unsealed Monday, the agency officially...
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Farmers, Consumers Challenge Monsanto-Backed GMO Bill Designed to Keep Public in the 'DARK'
Farmers, states' rights activists, and consumer rights advocates gathered in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday to protest outside a hearing on a bill they say would gut states' rights to pass laws requiring the mandatory labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The legislation , introduced...
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Only CIA Agent Jailed for Torture Program Is Whistleblower Who Confirmed Its Existence
There is only one U.S. government employee who has gone to jail in connection with the widespread torture program by the CIA documented in the executive summary (pdf) of the Senate report that was partially released Tuesday: the man who helped expose it six years ago. John Kiriakou, who worked for...
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Giveaways To Wall Street and Nation's Wealthiest in Spending Bill Make 'Great Train Robbery Look Like a Misdemeanor'
Watchdog groups are sounding the alarm as congressional lawmakers finalize an eleventh-hour omnibus bill, which observers say contains gifts to both big monied banks and donors. Thanks to a provision slipped into the more than $1 trillion congressional funding bill, which lawmakers agreed to late...
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'We Won't Pay': Tens of Thousands Protest Water Privatization in Ireland
"We can't pay! We won't pay!" was the call of tens of thousands who took to the streets of Dublin, Ireland on Wednesday to protest a controversial water fee—the latest in a series of unpopular austerity measures imposed on the country's citizens in recent years. The demonstration is timed to...
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Obama: America "Exceptional" So We Don't Prosecute Torturers
In his first official remarks following Tuesday's release of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on the torture program conducted by the CIA during the presidency of George W. Bush, President Barack Obama on Tuesday night indicated that the abuses detailed in the report conducted in the name...
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Tuesday, December 9, 2014
Israel's Attacks on Gaza Buildings This Summer Amount to War Crimes: Amnesty International
Israeli military forces this summer engaged in deliberate, large-scale destruction of Palestinian civilian buildings that constitutes war crimes, Amnesty International stated Tuesday. The finding, released in group's new briefing Nothing is immune: Israel’s destruction of landmark buildings in Gaza...
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'The Alarm Bells are Ringing': From Athletes to Environmentalists, a Universal Call for Racial Justice Emerges
With the nation's streets still filled with protesters and a plan for thousands to march on Washington brewing, the call for justice for Mike Brown, Eric Garner, and other black victims of police violence has only grown stronger. In the days and weeks since two grand juries failed to indict the...
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Supreme Court Orders BP to Pay Up
Despite BP's public relations blitz and high-priced team of lawyers, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected the oil giant's challenge to a settlement of billions of dollars for the 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion oil spill. The challenge was just the latest attempt by the company to avoid...
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As US Occupation Drags on, Afghanistan Suffering at Record High
As U.S. officials tout progress they say occupation forces have brought Afghanistan, people in that country are offering a much more bleak view. According to a new Gallup World Poll, Afghans are expressing record suffering, and have given record-low ratings to their own lives. The poll , which...
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ACLU Head's 'Pardon Bush' Op-Ed Sparks Controversy
In preparation for the much-anticipated release of the Senate's summary report on CIA torture, the head of one of the country's leading rights groups on Monday proposed a controversial solution to ensure that such crimes are never committed by the American government again: pardon President Bush...
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Divestment Campaign Aims to Bleed Dry the Fossil Fuel Industry
LIMA, Peru - Even as the presence of major oil and gas corporations is nearly ubiquitous at the U.N. climate talks in the Peruvian capital known as COP20, fossil fuel divestment campaigns have gained ground in various countries and are moving to counter the influence of the “dirty energy” lobby...
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People's Summit in Lima Envisions Bottom-Up Movement for Global Climate Justice
Social movements and civil societies from around the world are gathered in Lima, Peru this week with an ambitious goal : to "develop an alternative form of development, one that respects the limits and regenerative capacities of Mother Earth and tackles the structural causes of climate change." The...
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Senate CIA Torture Report Details 'Ruthless' Brutality of Bush Era
The executive summary of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on CIA torture was released on Tuesday morning. As the document itself (pdf) was posted online, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Chairperson of the committee, took to the Senate floor and to lay out the case made within the 500+ page report...
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Monday, December 8, 2014
With Global Tensions High, Experts Say Threat of Nuclear War Must Be Sharply Curbed
The world must work together to ameliorate the rising danger of nuclear war, experts from 46 countries declared in an open letter released ahead of Monday's kick-off of the Vienna Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons. "We believe the risks posed by nuclear weapons and the...
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With Negotiators in DC, Opponents Vow to 'Mobilize Like Never Before' to Kill Corporate-Friendly Trade Deals
Hundreds of activists chanted and waved signs outside of the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative in Washington, D.C. on Monday to protest the government's secretive negotiations of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) taking place inside, which they say place corporate interests ahead of...
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Amid Reporting over Botched Rescue, Scant Concern for Nameless Yemeni Civilians Also Killed
In nearly two days of reporting on a failed rescue attempt by U.S. Navy Seals in a remote region of Yemen, much attention has understandably been paid to the two western hostages—American journalist Luke Somers and South African educator Pierre Korkie—who lost their lives when things went wrong,...
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'Get the FF Out': Campaigners Reject Fossil Fuel Influence at Climate Summit
Fossil fuel industry lobbyists have no place at a climate conference, charged activists who on Monday shut down a "greenwashed" fossil fuel industry panel at the United Nations climate talks in Lima, Peru. Seizing on the event as an example of the corporate influence that has pervaded COP20 and all...
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Obama's Oil Boom Destroying Hope for Progress on Climate
Much heralded efforts to curb global warming by cutting carbon emissions are being effectively cancelled out by the export of fossil fuels and their related pollution which, according to an Associated Press analysis published Monday, have "soared" under President Obama. U.S. exports of gasoline and...
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UNICEF: 2014 'Devastating' for Millions of Children Across the Globe
Charging that the world has largely looked the other way, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) on Monday released a new report which concludes 2014 was one of the worst years on record for the overall welfare of children, with over 15 million young people directly harmed by the world's worst...
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Ahead of Senate Report, CIA and GOP Circle Wagons To Defend Bush-Era Torture
With a summary of what is expected to be a scathing report on the Bush administration's CIA torture program scheduled for release this week, current Republican lawmakers have teamed up with former CIA and Bush-era officials to discredit the report and defend the brutal treatment inflicted on...
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NATO Symbolically Lowers Flag in Afghanistan, But US War To March On
At a flag-lowering ceremony in Kabul on Monday, U.S. and NATO military commanders publicly declared that combat operations in Afghanistan are coming to a close. While major media outlets quickly picked up and parroted this message, one problem remains: the U.S.-led war is not, in fact, ending...
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Locked in Military Prison, Chelsea Manning Speaks Out for Transgender People Everywhere
Chelsea Manning, the U.S. Army whistleblower who leaked some of the most explosive military and government documents of the post-9/11 era is not staying silent as she serves a 35-year sentence at the Fort Leavenworth prison in Kansas for making those disclosures. In a powerfully worded op-ed...
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Sunday, December 7, 2014
'Just Keep Fighting for What's Right': Nationwide Protests Continue
"Keep on doing it, but do it in peace." Those are the words of Eric Garner's mother, Gwen Carr, who on Saturday in Harlem encouraged and welcomed the thousands of people taking part in ongoing marches calling for justice. "It is just so awesome to see how the crowds were out there," USA Today...
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Attorneys General, Energy Companies Formed Secret Alliance to Kill Regulations: NYT
Attorneys general in at least a dozen states have formed secretive alliances with "energy companies and other corporate interests" to fight Obama administration regulations, a new investigation by the New York Times has found. The Times notes that though individual attorneys general have before...
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