Sunday, March 17, 2019

Christchurch, International Student Climate Strikes, Venezuela & more -- The Week in News, Opinion and Videos March 10 - 17

New Zealand Vigil for Victims of Christchurch Terrorist Attack
This week's list of articles, news items, opinion pieces and videos that I see as a must if you are looking for a roundup that should be of interest to The Left Chapter readers.

This list covers the week of March 10 - 17.

In addition to a general overview of news and opinion this week's installment begins with a section of articles and videos devoted to the white supremacist terrorist attack in Christchurch, the international student climate strikes, and to Venezuela.

1) We told you the threat is white supremacy. You ignored us

Randa Abdel-Fattah, The New Arab

We told you the threat is white supremacy and you fueled it, gained from it, enabled and permitted it.

2) A horrifying pattern of white supremacist attacks


Our government – particularly policymakers and law enforcement – must begin to view what we call “domestic terrorism” through a global lens and recognize the growing white supremacist movement for what it is: a clear and present danger around the entire world.

3) The massacre in Christchurch: individual terrorism was nurtured by state terrorism


Redline stands in solidarity with the bereaved family and friends of the victims.  And we stand in solidarity with the peoples of the Third World who are on the receiving end of the bombs and bullets delivered by order of people like Scott Morrison and Jacinda Ardern.

"Heartbroken. On the left is 3 year old Muca Ibrahim, the youngest of all of the victims murdered by the white supremacist terrorist in New Zealand. Here he is with his older brother Abdi." - Shaun King on Facebook

4) White Nationalism Is an International Threat

Patrick Strickland, The New Republic 

The Christchurch attacks point to a disturbing web reaching from the United States, to the United Kingdom, to Greece, and beyond.

Halfway through the New Zealand shooting, as dozens around him lay dead, a single unarmed worshipper rushed the shooter, doing whatever he could to make him stop.
Some people will publicize the villain. 
Let's remember the heroes instead.
This is Naeem Rashid.
Even as his son Talha was shot and people around him lay bleeding in the mosque, he rushed the gunman, with no weapon, just his bare hands.
Both he and his son lost their lives.
(Words from @muhammadlila) - Shaun King on Facebook 

5) 'Hello brother,' first New Zealand mosque victim said to shooter

Diana Pereira, CITY TV News 

The hashtag #HelloBrother is gaining traction on Twitter following the massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand.


Geoff Sharpe, The Cable

Canada’s Conservative leader Andrew Scheer issued two tweets denouncing the attack on “freedom”. Glaringly missing was any mention of Muslims, denunciation of white nationalists, or characterization of the killings as a terrorist attack.

7) New Zealand PM vows to toughen gun control laws after Christchurch attack

Jon Swaine, The Guardian 

New Zealand’s gun control laws will be strengthened following the massacre of 49 people in Christchurch mosques, the country’s prime minister has said.

8) White Supremacist Kills 49 Muslim Worshipers in New Zealand as Islamophobic Hate Crimes Rise Globally

Democracy Now

In New Zealand, a white right-wing extremist killed 49 people in an attack on two mosques in the city of Christchurch during Friday prayers. It is the deadliest shooting in New Zealand’s history. Police have arrested and charged a 28-year-old Australian man named Brenton Tarrant with the attack. The gunman live-streamed the attack and published a manifesto in which he praised President Donald Trump as “a symbol of renewed white identity and common purpose.” We speak with human rights activist and lawyer Qasim Rashid, who recently launched a campaign to run for a seat in the Virginia state Senate. And we speak with Farid Hafez, a lecturer and researcher at the University of Salzburg, senior research fellow at The Bridge Initiative at Georgetown University and expert on Islamophobia.


Migrants Rights Network 

Now, more than ever, we must bring together people across the country from all walks of life around an anti-racist, migrant justice vision. Let us #UniteAgainstRacism and demand #MigrantJusticeNow!

Newcastle #YouthStrike4Climate demo

10) Arctic now locked into devastating temperature rise, UN report says

Walter Strong · CBC News

The Arctic is now locked into a destructive degree of climate change regardless of what measures are taken to halt global greenhouse gas emissions.

11) Spanish youths start getting organized against climate change

Miguel Bayod, El Pais 

As worldwide protests get underway on March 15, youngsters in Spain are using social media to create groups aimed at pressuring politicians and civil society leaders.

On 15 March over one million students walked out of school to protest climate destruction in 2000 places across the globe. The youth are showing the way forward!

12) Australian School Students Have Gone On Strike For Climate Change

Hannah Ryan & Lane Sainty, BuzzFeed News 

Tens of thousands of Australian students skipped school on Friday to demand politicians take action on climate change.

Photo: Australian Climate Change Strike via Green Left Weekly on Facebook


Sharon Lerner, The Intercept

“They think threatening us with arrest and suspension will stop us, but it won’t,” said Tierney. “The climate crisis is way more frightening than that.”

14) NYT’s Exposé on the Lies About Burning Aid Trucks in Venezuela Shows How U.S. Government and Media Spread Pro-War Propaganda

Glenn Greenwald, The Intercept 

EVERY MAJOR U.S. WAR of the last several decades has begun the same way: the U.S. government fabricates an inflammatory, emotionally provocative lie which large U.S. media outlets uncritically treat as truth while refusing at air questioning or dissent, thus inflaming primal anger against the country the U.S. wants to attack. That’s how we got the Vietnam War (North Vietnam attacks U.S. ships in the Gulf of Tonkin); the Gulf War (Saddam ripped babies from incubators); and, of course, the war in Iraq (Saddam had WMDs and formed an alliance with Al Qaeda).

15) US Regime Change Blueprint Proposed Venezuelan Electricity Blackouts as ‘Watershed Event’ for ‘Galvanizing Public Unrest’

Max Blumenthal, The Gray Zone

The US-funded CANVAS organization that trained Juan Guaido and his allies produced a 2010 memo on exploiting electricity outages and urged the opposition “to take advantage of the situation…towards their needs”

16) Venezuela: 100% of Electricity is Back On


Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro ordered the creation of a commission to investigate the events, which he considers an act of terrorism against the Venezuelan people. It will also request the support of international experts for research.

17) Cuba: Electric Sabotage Against Venezuela is Terrorism


The government of Cuba has rejected and described as a terrorist act the attack on Venezuela's electricity system which occurred last Thursday.

(Related: Puerto Rico puts the lie to America's supposed "humanitarian" concern for Venezuela's blackout

18) Pompeo: US To Withdraw All Personnel From Venezuela This Week


In a Monday night tweet U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says his office will send home the last remaining diplomatic officials in Venezuela.

19) Trump Admin Wants $500M to Fund Its Intervention in Venezuela


U.S. President Donald Trump asked Monday Congress to cut aid to Latin America but allow the U.S. Department of State to use US$500 million to fund its interventionist policies against the government of Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela which the Trump administration refers to as "democratic transition".

20) Guaidó Claims He Can Authorize Foreign Military Intervention in Venezuela

The Real News Network 

Temir Porras, Former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs under Hugo Chavez, says Guaidó’s assertion on Fox News is a violation of the Venezuelan constitution; Porras says the only way to avoid a blood bath is a negotiated political solution

21) Trudeau’s position on Honduras reveals hypocrisy about Venezuela

Yves Engler 

The hypocrisy is head spinning. As Justin Trudeau lectures audiences on the need to uphold Venezuela’s constitution the Liberals have recognized a completely illegitimate president in Honduras. What’s more, they’ve formally allied with that government in demanding Venezuela’s president follow their  (incorrect) reading of that country’s constitution.

22) Ricardo Hausmann’s 'Morning After' for Venezuela: The Neoliberal Brain Behind Juan Guaido’s Economic Agenda

Anya Parampil, Venezuela Analysis 

If you’ve followed Venezuela-related news on social media, you’ve undoubtedly stumbled across a video released by comedian Joanna Hausmann in which she promises to tell you, “What’s Happening in Venezuela: Just the Facts.” Despite a title designed to instill confidence in the uninformed viewer, upon closer examination the “facts” presented in Hausman’s video hardly stand the test of reality.

23) Veterans Call on U.S. Troops to Resist Illegal Orders to Invade Venezuela

Veterans For Peace

Refuse to be used in an illegal war. Follow your conscience and be on the right side of history.

24) Democrats and Death Squads in Venezuela

Lucas Koerner, Venezuela Analysis 

The 1980s appear to be back in vogue these days, and Elliott Abrams is not the only wretched corpse recently exhumed and returned to national political life.

25) SP Zambia joins ‘Hands Off Venezuela’ solidarity campaign

Oliver Chisenga, The Mast

The fight against Venezuela is a fight against humanity and we cannot fail,” he said. “So we hereby joining our comrades all over the world in shouting; Hands Off Venezuela.”

26) Prostitution is central to women’s oppression – so why do many on the left defend it?

Thain Parnell, The Morning Star 

Support on the left for the exploitative sex trade must stop if we are to claim we stand in solidarity with the oppressed, which rightly should include the class of prostituted women.


Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg, The Appeal

Attorneys representing the arrestees in Cartersville, Georgia, say they were mistreated in jail, lost jobs, and endured public humiliation.


Rachel Cohen, The Intercept

WHEN BRETT KAVANAUGH was named a Supreme Court justice last fall, a world in which access to abortions would be significantly limited, if not downright illegal, became more likely. Late last month, Georgia joined a handful of Republican-led states positioning themselves to lead the charge if Roe v. Wade, the seminal Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion, were to be overturned.

29) Kentucky Just Banned Abortion

 Brigitte Amiri, ACLU

The Kentucky Legislature passed two bills on this week, and unless a court blocks them, abortion will effectively be banned in the state.

30) Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East? Netanyahu’s comments have shattered that illusion

Ben White, The Independent

His comments that the country belongs to ‘Jewish people alone’ strike to the heart of the nature of Israel.

31) We need roses too: Student voices in revolutionary Cuba

Aretha Green, Education for Tomorrow 

IN OCTOBER 2018, I was privileged to take part in a six-day National Education Union delegation to Cuba. This short article is a reflection on some of what I experienced there and the lessons for our own education system.

32) Dozens killed and injured by new attacks in western Yemen, UN coordinator condemns ‘outrageous’ toll

UN News

Reports from Yemen’s Hajjah Governorate indicate that scores of civilians have been killed following attacks on residential areas over the past two days. Medical sources suggest that at least 22 have died, with more than 30 injured during the bombardment.

33) Brazil: 2 Former Police Arrested in Marielle Franco Murder


Two former policemen were captured Tuesday in Rio de Janeiro as suspects in the murder of Marielle Franco, a councilwoman and human rights activist who was shot on Mar. 14, 2018.

34) Study Finds Racial Gap Between Who Causes Air Pollution And Who Breathes It

Jonathan Lambert, NPR

Pollution, much like wealth, is not distributed equally in the United States.

35) Emergency workers summoned to Amazon warehouses 189 times over suicide concerns, breakdowns: report

Emily Birnbaum, The Hill

“It’s this isolating colony of hell where people having breakdowns is a regular occurrence,” Jace Crouch, a former warehouse employee from Florida, told The Daily Beast, adding that it is “mentally taxing to do the same task super fast for 10-hour shifts, four or five days a week.”

36) Social Democratic Party of Kenya changes name to Communist Party of Kenya

Brian Ukaya, Standard Digital 

The Social Democratic Party of Kenya (SDP) has changed its name to Communist Party of Kenya (CPK).

37) Meritocracy is a myth invented by the rich

Nathan Robinson, The Guardian 

The elite college admissions scandal in the US is a reminder that wealth, not talent, is what determines the opportunities you have in life.

38) Gov. Gavin Newsom to block California death row executions, close San Quentin execution chamber

Phil Willon, LA Times

Gov. Gavin Newsom will sign an executive order on Wednesday to impose a moratorium on the death penalty in California, vowing that no prisoner in the state will be executed while he is in office because of a belief that capital punishment is discriminatory, unjust and “inconsistent with our bedrock values.”


David Brennan, Newsweek 

A right-wing national weekly newspaper in Poland has published an article on its front page that explains to its readers “how to recognize a Jew.”

40) Puerto Rico’s demand for independence more alive than ever

Nuria Barbosa León, Granma 

Puerto Rico’s demand for independence was reaffirmed by the patriot Oscar López Rivera recently, insisting that this is the inalterable demand of the island’s people.

41) Activists Demand Cancellation of Puerto Rico’s $72 Billion Public Debt

Democracy Now

And in New York City, activists rallied outside federal court in Manhattan Wednesday, where a judge is overseeing Puerto Rico’s municipal bankruptcy proceedings—the largest such case in U.S. history. The protesters are demanding Judge Laura Taylor Swain cancel Puerto Rico’s $72 billion debt. This is activist Nicole Torres-Bruno.

42) Sanand Ford India workers protest against meager wages


For the past 27 days, workers at the Ford India plant in Sanand, Gujarat, have been boycotting food provided by the company in protest against management’s refusal to increase wages in collective bargaining negotiations.

43) Australia Aboriginals win right to sue for colonial land loss

Bill Code Al Jazeera 

The ruling in favour of the Ngaliwurru and Nungali groups paves the way for billions of dollars in compensation.

44) 'Racist and fascist' - Spanish right attacked over baby offer

James Badcock, News Europe

Spain's conservative Popular Party (PP) has pledged that pregnant illegal immigrants will be able to avoid deportation by giving their baby up for adoption, if the party wins April's general election.

45) Four Left parties to contest together in Jharkhand

The New India Express

The leaders of the Communist Party of India (CPI), Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), Marxist Coordination Committee and Communist Party of India-Marxist Leninist decided to go for an alliance.

46) Les 10 propositions du PCF pour la France


Face au mouvement des Gilets jaunes, aux mobilisations populaires, le président de la République a du ouvrir un grand débat national. Celles et ceux qui se sont exprimés y ont porté un message clair. Ils disent vouloir vivre dignement et être respectés. Ils disent que le travail doit payer. Ils disent que les injustices sociales et fiscales sont une honte. Ils disent, à l’échelle de leurs quartiers, de leurs lieux de travail, qu’ils veulent pouvoir décider. Ils disent que la fin du mois ne doit pas être opposé à la fin du monde. Ils attendent des réponses fortes et ambitieuses.

47) The Profound Emptiness of Beto O’Rourke

Alex Shephard, The New Republic 

After months spent teasing his supporters and the political media, Beto O’Rourke surprised absolutely no one Thursday when he officially announced his candidacy for president. “We are truly now more than ever the last great hope of Earth,” he said in a video posted on social media, channeling The Lord of the Rings. “At this moment of maximum peril, and maximum potential, let’s show ourselves and those who will succeed us in this great country just who we are and what we can do.”

48) The German Revolution’s Bloody End

Ralf Hoffrogge, Jacobin 

The decisive battles of the German Revolution ended in March 1919 with the bloody crushing of the workers’ uprising. Why did it meet such a fate?

49) Brazil Moves to Open Indigenous Lands to Mining

Sue Branford and Maurício Torres, EcoWatch 

For many years, international and Brazilian mining companies have dreamed of getting access to the mineral wealth lying beneath indigenous lands. And finally, the government of Jair Bolsonaro seems determined to give them that opportunity. On March 4, while Brazilians were distracted by Carnival celebrations, the new Minister of Mines and Energy Admiral Bento Albuquerque announced plans to permit mining on indigenous land.

See also: Ilhan Omar, IWD, Venezuela & more -- The Week in News, Opinion and Videos March 3 - 10

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