Friday, March 29, 2013 Tuesday, March 19, 2013

I don’t think we should be asking President Bush if he should apologize or if what happened was criminal and immoral. I think there should be an independent investigation in the United States to hold those who took the U.S. to war accountable, including President Bush and other politicians in his administration. The crimes that were committed and the fraud and the money that was spent and the lives that were destroyed deserve an apology and a compensation, and they deserve everyone who was behind these attacks to be held accountable.

I think the vast majority of Iraqis expects to get an apology. They expect to get compensation for what happened to their country in the last two decades. The country has been destroyed. And the people who were killed in Iraq were compensated by $2,500, believe it or not. The U.S. government has a policy of compensating Iraqis by giving them $2,500 for any family member who was killed and $2,500, the same amount, for any property that is damaged. I mean, just see how humiliating it is to come to a family that lost their car and two of their kids, and give them $7,500 because this is our policy. We give them $2,500 apiece, whether that piece is a human being or a car. I mean, imagine the level of humiliation, the level of disregard to human life in Iraq. All of these things have to be—have to change. I mean, it’s true that the U.S. has ended its military occupation to Iraq, but the U.S. moral and legal obligations to the country are not over yet.

Raed Jarrar, speaking on Democracy Now. (full interview:
Thursday, March 14, 2013

Journalist from Buenos Aires talking about the Pope Francis’ involvement with the military dictatorship in the ’70s on Democracy Now at this moment.

Thursday, February 21, 2013 Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Lawmakers Threaten Funding of Brooklyn College for Hosting Event on BDS Campaign Against Israel |

New York politicians are threatening to cut funding to Brooklyn College if the school hosts a forum Thursday night about the Palestinian-led campaign to boycott and divest from Israel. The Brooklyn College Political Science Department is among the event’s co-sponsors. In response, a group of New York City Council members has raised the possibility of Brooklyn College losing taxpayer support. The council members’ threat is just one of several efforts by local lawmakers, from Congress on down, to pressure Brooklyn College to remove its sponsorship or even cancel the event. As the school vows to proceed with the event, we’re joined by one of its featured speakers, author and activist Omar Barghouti, a founding member of the BDS movement and author of “Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions: The Global Struggle for Palestinian Rights.” On BDS, Barghouti says, “It follows in the steps of the civil rights movement in this country, in the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa. … It’s just when we talk about Palestinian rights, that some people are trying to criminalize and make it completely unacceptable speech to address Palestinian rights under international law.” We’re also joined by Glenn Greenwald, columnist for The Guardian and author of “With Liberty and Justice for Some: How the Law Is Used to Destroy Equality and Protect the Powerful.” [Transcript to come. Check back soon.]

Wednesday, January 23, 2013 Thursday, December 6, 2012

AMY GOODMAN: Amy Goodman, Democracy Now! Civil society groups are extremely frustrated here. President Obama, in his first speech after he was elected, said that he didn’t want his—he didn’t want our children to live in an America that isn’t threatened by the destructive power of a warming planet. Yesterday, a number of civil society groups held a news conference, and they said at that news conference—Kumi Naidoo of Greenpeace International said, “Todd Stern and Jonathan Pershing have come to Doha with their needles stuck in the groove of obstructing the U.N. process, an art they have perfected.” And he said that it is “disrespectful of President Obama to inflict on us two negative negotiators who act as if the comments he made after his election were never made. Obama should pick up the phone and tell his delegates to follow his lead, or, alternatively, call them back to Washington.” That’s what Kumi Naidoo said. Jonathan Pershing, are you following President Obama’s wishes? And how do you respond to civil society groups who are saying that the U.S. is the lead obstructor to any kind of negotiated deal here in Doha?

JONATHAN PERSHING: I have no comment on the first part of that. On the second piece, I think the United States’s role is very much one of engaging actively and constructively in the discussion. We are one of the significant contributors to the intellectual thinking in the process. We have been. We will continue to try to do that. It doesn’t mean that we will agree with everyone on everything. This is, after all, a negotiation. We’re looking to participate in an outcome that will lead to a reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions. We’re looking at an outcome that will be acceptable to all parties. We’re looking at an outcome that will be effective in the time frame that we’ve set for ourselves to move forward.

My country continues to make me feel ashamed. What was Obama thinking appointing this so-called “chief climate negotiator”? Everything he said was garbage. He has no interest in climate change.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012 Wednesday, September 26, 2012
But above and beyond that, what we found—and this was something that really affected us and was something that we tried to make as clear as possible in the report—is that apart from the deaths and the maimings and the injuries, apart from that, there is a constant effect that people who live in these areas of northwest Pakistan—there are experiences, there are effects that are quite serious that everyone in the community—men, women, children, anyone and everyone—feel and experience on an everyday basis. Drones flying overhead, they make a buzzing sound. If you’re under those drones, you know, as Sarah said earlier, that they can fire down at any time, and they can fire down on anyone. And if you are within strike distance in the blast radius of a strike, it doesn’t matter that they’re not striking you. You—shrapnel and the blast of drones and, in particular, of the Hellfire missiles that they fire, they don’t discriminate. Maybe the operators discriminate—and again, how they discriminate is an open question, and we can talk about that. But once the missiles hit, those within a radius of danger are subject to death or serious injury. And so, the consequence of this are the psychological effects and also significant effects on Pakistani society, on local society. People are afraid to congregate in groups of three or four. People don’t go to rescue maybe close relatives or friends when a drone missile has struck. People don’t go to funerals of community members that they would go to funerals of. In short, there’s a breakdown in basic social engagement that we’ve documented, and what it adds up to is thousands of people living in a region where drones cause them to experience life as though they were in a war zone. And the last time I checked, the United States had not declared war on Pakistan. James Cavallaro on Democracy Now