Price of Unjustified Intervention

A Hundred Years of Retribution - Given the radical antiwar sentiments I have expressed over the years, I am sometimes mistaken for a pacifist.  I am not a pacifist.  Though I stand in opposition to ev

Sunday, 01 March 2015 17:38 Sel Graham Editorial Dept - Science
Will Rogers said, "Everyone is ignorant; just on different subjects."  What others don't know can and does hurt you. -  Everyone seems ignorant (1) that "The oil price" seen and heard in the media is, in fact, the guess of Wall Street speculators (gamblers) on the New York Mercantile Exchange on the commodity price of a small amount of oil six months in the future; (2) that there is a foreign oil price and a U.S. oil price that is never found in the media but on obscure websites of the Energy Information Administration; (3) that in 2008, the Presidential election year, the foreign oil price decreased a total of $87.34 per barrel during the last half of the year, then increased in 2009; and (4) that foreign oil prices decreased in 2014 from June through October, before the election.  

Because of this quadruple ignorance, in June some unidentified Wall Street gamblers made the worst guess of 2014, that the price of oil in December would be $106 per barrel.  In attempting to correct this blunder, the gamblers became like lemmings in guessing lower and lower. 

Wall Street gamblers' guesses are hurting the stock market and hurting the stock I own.  They are probably decreasing your net worth.  Foreign oil prices have affected Wall Street guesses without the gamblers knowing it.  Wall Street gamblers should stop guessing, at least until they know what foreign oil prices will be in 2015.  Americans should demand that Congress regulate this gambling by requiring the media, if it reports the Mercantile Exchange price, to emphasize that it is the guess of the price in the future and to report the most recent price of foreign oil and U.S. oil along with this guess of the price in the future.

Sunday, 01 March 2015 11:15 Greg Shupak Editorial Dept - Africa
The title of Horace Campbell's book on NATO's 2011 Libyan intervention, Global NATO and the Catastrophic Failure in Libya, is an allusion to a Guardian article by Seumas Milne entitled, “If the Libyan war was about saving lives, it was a catastrophic failure.” Echoing Milne's use of “catastrophic” is apt. Claudia Gazzini of the liberal NGO International Crisis Group points out that, if the casualty figures provided by Libya's National Transitional Council are accurate, “the death toll subsequent to the seven-month NATO intervention was at least ten times greater than the tally of those killed in the first few weeks of the conflict” before NATO intervened.

As Campbell shows, while NATO claimed to be protecting human rights, it bombed Libyan civilians and enabled the Libyan opposition to persecute black African migrant workers and ethnically cleanse the black Libyan town of Tawergha. Less than four years after NATO attacked Libya, Bernadino Leon, the United Nation's special envoy to Libya, says the country is “close to the point of no return.”

Perhaps as many as two million Libyan refugees have fled to Tunisia, though the exact figure is in dispute. In November, militants claiming affiliation with ISIS secured control of the Libyan city of Derna, where they have carried out public executions and assassinated activists.

Friday, 20 February 2015 17:55 J. F. Conway Editorial Dept - Americas
“Only a fool would deny that millions have been the tragic victims of communism, but that number pales, surely, in comparison with the victims of capitalism.” - Roy MacGregor, Globe and Mail, 31 January 2015.

Roy MacGregor was commenting on Harper's latest ideological propaganda foray into keeping us safe by reminding us of all the bogeymen out there on the very big, broad left. (Harper's definition of communism is really quite loose, just look at some of his past comments on Pierre Trudeau.)

Harper is building a big ugly memorial to the victims of communism on a million dollar piece of public land right beside the Supreme Court. (Could this be revenge for their decisions dismantling key pieces of his agenda?) And it is ugly, really ugly – just look at the sketches of the proposed memorial. It is right up there with the ugliest of Stalinist politically correct statues and monuments imposed across the Soviet Union before its implosion in 1991.

Stephen Harper would be a rather sad and pathetic figure if he didn't hold the power of the Canadian state firmly in his grasp. This allows him to impose his folksy fanaticism on the rest of us. He is without doubt the most fierce right-wing ideologue to occupy the office of prime minister since R.B. Bennett, who in 1919 vowed to crush communism “under the iron heel of ruthlessness.” And he proceeded to do so. But Bennett had some real, tough class enemies to deal with in the days of the Winnipeg General Strike and the Great Depression.

Friday, 20 February 2015 11:57 GFP Columnist - G. Tod Slone
A Counterpoint Editorial

Somehow Sid Shniad’s pro-socialism, anti-capitalism, anti-Israel “68 Years of Struggle and Resistance for Peace, Justice and Freedom” editorial failed to mention that prior to those 68 years, the Palestinians were pro-Hitler and pro-Nazis.  Now, how could that fact have been omitted?  Shniad seems adept at painting a black and white simplistic picture of Palestine as perfect, while Israel as perfectly evil. 

Simplistic black and white depictions, as in capitalism is evil and socialism is good, should always be questioned and challenged.   To date, capitalist America, thanks to its First Amendment trumps perhaps every country regarding the basic human right of freedom of speech.  When I see dubious statements like so many of Shniad’s, I am compelled to respond. 

Questions need to be posed.  For example, what preceded capitalism in the world?  Was the world much better off pre-capitalism?  Did people live longer?  Was there an equality of wealth?  Of course, the answers to those questions are NO.  Perhaps what preceded capitalism was a kind of pre-capitalism of trade and barter. 

Wednesday, 18 February 2015 17:01 GFP Columnist - Alan Caruba
I read Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s recent call to European Jews to move to Israel in the wake of the attacks in Paris and in Copenhagen. “Israel is your home. We are preparing and calling for the absorption of mass immigration from Europe,” was Netanyahu’s message to those considering leaving their home nations.

By 2012 about 43% of the world’s Jewish community lived in Israel, making it the country with the largest Jewish population. The bulk of the rest of the world’s Jewish population lives in the United States and the remainder are scattered among other nations. 

When it declared its sovereignty in 1948 Israel quickly filled with Jewish immigrants from the surrounding Arab nations that made it clear they were not welcome even if their families had lived there for generations. Now they are extending their hatred to Arab Christians.

These days Israel’s population numbers 7,821,850. For years Israel has been welcoming Jewish immigrants from nations that include Russia, Ethiopia, Ukraine, and France; even some from the U.S. As incidences of anti-Semitism increase in Europe, Netanyahu’s invitation is being answered by more Jews seeking a respite from the hatred they are encountering.

Jews represent less than 0.2% of the world's population.

Monday, 02 February 2015 13:57 GFP Columnist - Haresh Daswani
Countries are at war, and some of the biggest wars happening in many countries happen internally.

Lives have been lost, civilian lives were affected by terrorist attacks as they live for their cause.

While it is true, that one group's terrorist is another group's freedom fighters. And it is true that perhaps they have a very noble cause at hand for their own people, killing innocent people cancels out the nobility of their act.

We have set examples of great men and women over time who were able to attain their cause through peace. It has happened, and it can still happen. We have put Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and many others on the pedestal for pushing the idea of non-violence as a way to get the message across. We have seen people boycott, turn to civil disobedience, and perhaps stage a massive rally to be heard.

In the Philippines as well, peaceful protests, massive peaceful protests were able to depose leaders and change society.

Why does terrorism become an option to get what they want?

Thursday, 29 January 2015 16:20 Sid Shniad Editorial Dept - Feature Editorials
When I was invited to speak at today's forum, the attacks in Paris against the magazine Charlie Hebdo and the kosher super market had not taken place. In light of the media coverage of what happened in Paris, I feel the need to situate my comments against the backdrop of those events. I hope you will indulge me.
Over the past 500 years, rampaging capitalism has expanded ruthlessly across the world, eliminating all impediments to the accumulation of wealth in the hands of those who own and run the system. We are familiar with the attendant results: rising standards of living for a few, accompanied by growing insecurity, impoverishment and degradation of the many.

The contemporary world, run as it is by the forces of capitalism, is characterized by grotesque, ever-increasing levels of inequality and instability.
Imperialism and colonialism, which involve the forcible subjugation of the peoples of the global south to the demands of this system, have played an essential part in its growth and sustenance.

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