Otto Jespersen og jødene

november 29, 2008

Holocaust-industrien lever fortsatt i beste velgående ser jeg. Nå har Otto Jespersen blitt politianmeldt for å ha brukt «jøder» i en nylig vits om fokuset på den foreldreløse sjiraffen i Kristiansand.

Skal vi rive oss i håret, gapskratte, eller grine?

Seymour Hersh about Abu Ghraib and top-secret US missions

juni 20, 2007

Just finished watching today’s Democracy Now! Seymour Hersh was interviewed and had some very interesting things to say. I’m impressed at his knowledge!

Link to the torrent and the stream.

He said some interesting things about the torture scandal at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay. The very top people knew pretty much from the beginning what was going on, all the way up to Rumsfeld, and very likely Bush himself. He didn’t really talk about who ordered it, but in light of what Rumsfeld has said about torture for many years, even after this scandal broke, I think it’s quite obvious that he had a big say in this, and it may very well be he that ordered it in the first place. As Hersh says, the US had pretty much no clue about anything about the insurgency (called resistance if «we» did it), so they wanted information. Thus the «softening up» (aka torture) of prisoners to get them to tell. Of course most don’t know anything, and are just being tortured. Then to stop the torture they will say anything. Very normal, and exactly why torture can be a very bad way to get information (aside from the obvious crimes and breach of international law). Due to this I think the order came from the very top, either from Rumsfeld or Cheney. As I think many of us know, Bush isn’t really the «Action Man» in this administration. The people around him make many of the decisions for him (fairly normal, but not on this scale – radically different from under Clinton for example).

The most interesting part of the interview for me, was when Hersh talked about the top secret missions the US has in 13 countries around the world, naturally including the Middle East and Iran. He said they were on the border ready to get into Iran, but I’m pretty sure some units already are in Iran, trying to get a pre-emption for the US to strike «back». This is happening on the «SAP» level, which according to Hersh is the top level of secrecy. The U2 spy plane was developed on this level for example. He also said it was unusual that field operations were at this level, it was usually R&D and that kinda stuff.

This is probably one of the reasons why Hersh has said for a long time that the US are planning a military attack on Iran (most likely not an invasion, but to target their important infrastructure and military capability). When they have top secret units of hitmen ready to enter Iran on short notice, or already operating in Iran, the US clearly have well-developed plans to attack them. This is a cause for great worry – both for people on the left (and anybody else to be honest), and Iranians.

I haven’t really feared that much an attack on Iran, as I didn’t think they would be crazy enough to do that.But this has really sent my alarm bells off!

This is fantastically important information, and I really hope the press jumps on it. I won’t bet my life on it, but he has such a huge name and reputation, so I hope the media will react this time.

Please watch the interview, and spread the information to people you know.

Foredrag med Johan Galtung

februar 12, 2007

Kom akkurat hjem fra et foredrag med Johan Galtung på Chateu Neuf i Oslo. Veldig interessant.

Han pratet om USAs imperie og spådde dets nedfall, samt Norges rolle i verden, og generelt om fredsmegling og mulighetene for konfliktløsing i verden.

Han spår det amerikanske imperiets nedfall innen 15-20 år. Dette blir delvis begrunnet i dets mangel på demokrati (stor spredning mellom politikk og folkets mening), den økonomiske veksten til asiatiske land, spesielt Kina, og en svekket dollar i forhold til euro. Han spår så at verden blir delt opp i forskjellige regioner, der land går sammen og danner overnasjonale organisasjoner for tettere samarbeid. De er mye likt det europeiske EU, og vi finner dem overalt i verden. Fra Latin-Amerika til Asia til Afrika, gjennom MercoSur/ALBA, den Afrikanske Union, ASEAN og SCO. Felles for dem alle er at de er mer demokratiske enn FN, ved at de ikke har vetorett.

Videre pratet han om Norges tette bånd til USA, og vår manglende utenrikspolitikk, samt feilaktige meglerroller i både Midtøsten og Sri Lanka. Han sveipet også innom medias manglende dekning av viktige begivenheter i verden, som f.eks. at Hamas ville anerkjenne Israel for flere år siden, og at Iran lenge har villet forhandle med USA om dets utvikling av atomteknologi, men USA har nektet.

Jeg er enig i mye av kritikken hans, men når det kommer til analysen av hvorfor maktsentre gjør som de gjør, syns jeg han legger for mye vekt på religion. Det er helt sikkert en viktig faktor i mange land, men i denne avdelingen tror jeg Chomsky har mer å komme med. Man kan ikke se på USAs politikk i Midtøsten bare utifra en religiøs vinkling. Religion er utvilsomt viktig, men det er andre faktorer som spiller en større rolle, tror jeg. Det mest åpenbare er de gigantiske forekomstene av naturressurser i form av olje og gass. Hadde ikke Midtøsten hatt dette, hadde heller ikke USA vært så interessert i regionen. Dette ble dessverre ikke problematisert verken av Galtung selv eller av spørsmålsstillere.

Til tross for at jeg ikke er enig i alt han sier, har han mange gode poenger og problemstillinger å komme med, og ikke minst mange veldig gode forslag til løsninger på til dels svært følelsesladde og vanskelige konflikter og konfliktområder. Dette innebærer for eksempel en radikal fredsløsning på Palestina/Israel-konflikten, der Israel gir to kantoner til Palestina, og Palestina to kantoner til Israel. Dette for at begge folkegrupper har sterk tilknytning til de respektive områdene. Skal det bli varig fred, kan dette dermed være en god løsning.

Et veldig godt, givende, positivt og interessant foredrag av Galtung, foran en stappfull Storsal på Chateu Neuf. Må innrømme mannen ser svært så ungdommelig ut til å være godt over 70 år. Foredraget ble avbrutt av applaus med jevne mellomrom, og avsluttet med stående applaus. Kort og godt to vel anvendte timer.

Capitalism, democracy and the media

januar 13, 2007

Just done some reading about Bush’s «new» strategy over at ZNet and CounterPunch. Some pretty good analysis there. One of the more disturbing parts of Bush’s speech (yeah right, as if he wrote it!) is that «he» threatened Iran and Syria, quite explicitly. It’s all in the context of the plan of a «New Middle East», where ther influence of Iran, Iraq and Syria is gone. Iraq has been destroyed. Let’s hope they don’t destroy Iran and Syria as well. If they try that, I can guarantee the region will blow up in flames, and those flames can very well reach the US and Europe as well. Our flames have been burning in the Middle East now for over 100 years. Their patience is surprisingly strong.

I seem to remember that before the US invasion of Iraq, BBC was fairly good. I think they were very negative of the whole affair. Then again I may be suffering from the «things were so good in the ancient past»-syndrome. 4 years back seems like the ancient past nowadays. People’s non-memory from 1984 comes to mind. That book is still very relevant. Perhaps more now than ever. I haven’t watched much of Sky, but BBC now looks like Wall Street TV or something like that. There are «Business News» all over the place, and the regular news is filled with business news as well. Then there is the very biased opinions of journalists, and the small framework they are allowed to work within. It would have been very interesting to see how they got infiltrated and how the elites of the West managed to change their cover of the Iraq war, and more generally the West’s monstrous crimes in the Middle East – now and in the past (not all past is good, see Wink). This is why it was such a relief to watch images from Al Jazeera. They had pictures from the ground on Iraq, of maimed people etc, interviews with people whose house the Americans had just knocked down the door on and partly smashed. This is of course disturbing images, but we wouldn’t know this ever happened based on the cover of BBC, CNN, Fox News or Sky News (or any of the national broadcasts for that matter). They all operate in the «green zone», and even there they are embedded. How do you think the cover of World War II or the holocaust would have been like if all journalists covering the events were embedded with Nazi soldiers? The journalists’ lifes depend on these very same soldiers, so of course they are not going to criticize them in any meaningful way. They could get a bullet in the head from the same soldiers for crying out loud (and some probably have too).

Over to a small analysis of why the media is so biased as it is. We know there is a stark difference between capitalism and democracy. In capitalism there is a deep-rooted hatred for democracy. All capitalists do is to undermine democracy, and then profit from the lack of democracy and popular control. We know the vast majority of the world, even the so-called Western world, is strongly opposed to the illegal and unjust Iraq-war. But the media isn’t controlled by the people, nor written by representatives of «the people». Media institutions are owned and controlled by big and powerful capitalists, and the structures they hide behind (corporations). It should therefore be no surprise to anybody that the media’s coverage of the Iraq war is on behalf of the same elites and capitalists that own them. I have not yet read Chomsky’s and Herman’s «Manufacturing Consent», but I believe this is basically what the book is about – how this relationship works, and examples of it.

So therefore:
(1) There is a strong contrast between capitalism/capitalists and democracy. Capitalism != Democracy (for you programming buffs Wink)
(2) Capitalists control and own the media outlets
(3) It is therefore only natural that the media also show the same hatred and disgust for democracy as its owners do

In the end I think it is therefore more or less meaningless to send letters to editors and journalists of these corporate media outlets. Their cover works within a small framework its owners set. Unless the owners change, this framework will not change. But more importantly, unless we change the economic system, democracy will never be respected in any meaningful way. It’s as if we live in a communist dictatorship without the hatred for individual rights. We live in a capitalistic dictatorship, with its hatred for communal rights and democracy. The most important thing in the world is to change this. All other changes will grow out of changing the economic dictatorship we currently live in. If democracy is established, the power and influence of the military-industrial complex, corporations and right-wing think-tanks will automatically be reduced. It’s simply the results of democracy in action. Since the vast majority of people don’t like those institutions or the results they bring, those institutions will be removed, or at least radically changed.

Nyttårsfeiring i Paris

januar 9, 2007

Vi var en gjeng på 10 personer som feiret det nye året i Paris, 6 jenter og 4 gutter. Har vært i Paris en gang før, men dette var utrolig mye bedre! Kan ikke huske å hatt det så morro på svært lenge. Vi holdt på å le oss i hjel utallige ganger, og frankmenn grøsser nok ved tanken på «crazy norwegians» :p

Vi reiste ned tidlig på nyttårsaften og sjekket inn på 3 Ducks Hostel i nærheten av Eiffel-tårnet. De fleste reiste tilbake til kalde, kjedelige og kjipe Norge 7. januar, men jeg reiste 5.

Nyttårsaften spiste vi først på en fancy restaurant, før vi sleit lenge med å finne en fin plass for litt øl, vin og champagne. Det var også et fryktelig vær. Rundt 23 lettet det, og vi fant etterhvert en fin restaurant like i nærheten av Eiffel-tårnet. Her bestilte vi champis og vin, før vi stakk bort til Eiffel-tårnet like før 2007. Hadde ventet et fyrverkeri av dimensjoner fra toppen av Eiffel-tårnet, men det var skuffende greier. Bare noen privatpersoner hist og pist som skjøt opp noen raketter, og ikke noe offentlig show i det hele tatt. Men morro hadde vi det likevel :)

Vi var i toppen av Eiffel-tårnet ved en seinere anledning, og det var en helt utrolig utsikt. Ifølge personalet var vi ca 320 meter høyt oppe, så kanskje ikke så rart. Får en veldig god oversikt over byen herfra. Absolutt å anbefale. Koster bare rundt 10 euro.

Vi var også i Disneyland litt utenfor Paris. Noe mer kommerst skal man lete lenge etter, men det var utrolig fint der når mørket kom. Blant annet et slott der med tusenvis av lys som var helt vidunderlig mot den mørke natten. Litt skuffende berg-og-dalbaner der, det var nok ment på et litt yngre publikum. Men på slutten av dagen tok vi Spaceshoten, og den var sykt kul! Uten tvil den beste attraksjonen i parken. Fikk også med oss et danseshow av the Lion King. Var fint å se på, selv om det åpenbart var brukt en god del playback. Men flinke å danse var de. Så også en fancy 3D-film der vi ble angrepet av mus og en pytonslange. Veldig morro.

Dagen etterpå var vi i Louvre. De fleste var ganske skutt i beina etter all gåingen i Disneyland, men det var en fin opplevelse og utrolig mye fint og spennende å se. Vi gikk gjennom avdelingene Egypt og Persia, før vi beveget oss mot maleriene og Mona Lisa. Mange kjempedigre og utrolig flotte malerier i hallene mot Mona Lisa. Skulle gjerne vært der litt lenger. Ved Mona Lisa var det som ventet stappfullt med folk, men vi snek oss ganske nærme likevel. Trodde faktisk maleriet var fysisk større, så litt overrasket over det. Men fy flate så flott! Det er virkelig noe helt spesielt med uttrykket i ansiktet hennes, og da spesielt ved munnen og øynene. Du kan egentlig tolke smilet hennes i alle mulige retninger. Hun er både sur, skeptisk, arg og smilende samtidig. Helt merkelig. Samtidig føles det som om øynene forfølger deg rundt om i rommet. Utrolig hvordan det går an å lage noe slikt. Ikke rart det er verdt mange hundre millioner. Skulle egentlig vært der litt lenger og sett mer på de flotte maleriene, men jeg og to andre stakk til Bastille for å finne noen mørke puber istedet. Fant en helt konge gate vi kalte Samegata med pub etter pub på rekke og rad. Egentlig het den Rue de Lappe. Den hadde en helt sykt bra Creppe-sjappe på ene enden. Man kan ikke dra til Paris uten å smake disse fantastiske pannekakene! Bedre fyllemat finner man ikke ;)
De første pubene åpnet kl 16, så vi stakk inn på den beste av dem. Tok et par pils her, før resten av gjengen kom til samme sted. Vi pilset videre utover kvelden, og beveget oss innom noen flere barer.

Paris er kort og godt en helt fantastisk by. Den har det meste, og har plenty av tourist-sites som bare må oppleves. Der er flust med flotte restauranter med helt levelige priser, selv i nærheten av Louvre og Eiffel-tårnet. Og god vin til 2 euro kan ikke en nordmann si nei til ;)

Utrolig morro nyttårsfeiring, og har ikke ledd så vilt på svært lenge. Kjempemorsom gjeng å reise sammen med. Skal ikke se bort fra at vi tar en lignende tur seinere også. Skulle gjerne vært lenger, men slik er det alltid når en har det fantastisk morro.

Nobels Fredspris til Muhammad Yunus og Grameen Bank

oktober 13, 2006

Nå har akkurat beskjeden kommet om at Muhammad Yunus og Grameen Bank fra Bangladesh har vunnet Nobels Fredspris 2006. Dette er med på å utvide prisen til flere områder. Vi vet at det er en nær sammenheng mellom fattigdom og krig. Derfor mener jeg dette er en glimrende pris.

Grameen Bank driver med såkalt mikrofinans gjennom mikrokreditt. De låner ut små beløp til fattige, ofte kvinner, slik at de kan kjøpe en liten jordflekk, noen geiter eller kyr. Dette blir gjerne gjort slik at hele landsbyen jobber sammen for å betale tilbake lånet. Klarer de det får flere i landsbyen lignende lån, og man repeterer prosessen. Dette samarbeidet gjør at tilbakebetalingen til banken er nesten 100%. Her har Verdensbanken og IMF svært mye å lære.

Slike mikrokredittlån gjør at fattige mennesker får en mulighet til å komme seg ut av fattigdom. Det har vært en utrolig viktig strategi i Bangladesh, og bankens virksomhet og idé har spredd seg over hele verden. Nå finner vi lignende banker i Latin-Amerika, Afrika, Europa og Asia.

Dette er en Fredspris, men også til de grader en Utviklingspris. Veldig spennende i sammenheng med Norges unilaterale sletting av u-landsgjeld 2. oktober i år. Dette ble også nevnt på pressekonferansen.

Må si jeg ikke har vært kjempeimponert over Fredsprisen de siste par årene, selv om den selvsagt har gått til viktige spørsmål som også handler om fredsarbeid. Dette året gikk prisen til en glimrende person, idé og organisasjonsnettverk. Med denne prisen får det viktige arbeidet til Grameen Bank mer fokus i pressen, og det bør bli lettere å spre ideen videre til enda flere land, og intensivere arbeidet der det allerede er aktivt.

Så kan man alltids håpe Verdensbanken og IMF tar dette innover seg, og utarbeider retningslinjer for en mer fornuftig utlånsstrategi med mye mindre fokus på kondisjonaliteter som fokuserer på hva Vesten vil ha, og heller fokuserer på hva fattige land og mennesker trenger. Begge institusjonene har potensiale til å spille svært viktige roller i kampen mot fattigdom. Denne pristildelingen kan kanskje være med på å forandre prioriteringene internt i institusjonene, eller i det minste øke presset på dem for å tilpasse seg de fattiges behov fremfor de rikes.

En kjempebra pristildeling. Gratulerer Muhammad Yunus og Grameen Bank!

Internasjonal dekning av sletting av u-landsgjelda

oktober 5, 2006

Har endelig klart å finne dekning av Norges historiske beslutning om å slette u-landsgjelda knyttet til Skipseksportkampanjen.

IPS News Agency: Norway Breaks Silence on «Illegitimate Debt»
Business Week (AP): Norway cancels debts for 5 countries
Financial Times: Norway debt cancellation hailed by activists
Inspire Magazine: Norway sets down debt challenge to richer nations
Jamaica Gleaner: Norway writes off debt with Jamaica
Asian Tribune: Norway sets crucial precedent for the cancellation of illegitimate debt

Norge sletter u-landsgjelda!

oktober 3, 2006

Igår ble det bestemt. Norge sletter endelig u-landsgjelda fra Skipseksportkampanjen. Totalt er gjelda på omtrent 2,9 milliarder kroner. Av dette blir 520 millioner slettet nå. Burma (Myanmar) og Sudan skylder de siste 2,4 milliardene. De blir ikke slettet nå, men slik vi forstår det på et senere tidspunkt når disse landene har mer demokratiske regimer.

Ecuador får slettet 225 millioner, Egypt 168 mill, Sierra Leone 60 mill, Peru 48 mill, og Jamaica 19 mill. Sierra Leones gjeld blir ikke slettet nå, men når de har fullført sin HIPC-behandling, som er forventet rundt årsskiftet 2006/07.

Gjelden blir slettet uten betingelser, og uten at det blir tatt penger fra bistandsbudsjettet. Det blir bare satt en strek for gjelden, og Norge får litt mindre inntekter (577 millioner ifølge UD).

Med denne modige og historiske avgjørelsen bryter Norge med de andre kreditorlandene i Paris-klubben.  Der er det en slags avtale om at man ikke skal gi etter for slike krav om gjeldsslette. Norge har dermed tatt et viktig steg mot en mer rettferdig gjeldspolitikk internasjonalt, og har satt en viktig presedens. Forhåpentligvis fører dette til at andre land gjør det samme.

SLUG: Pressemelding – En historisk seier for gjeldsbevegelsen
SLUG: SLUGere: Nå er det grunn til å være stolt
NRK: Noreg slettar u-landsgjeld
TV2: Solheim slette u-landsgjeld
UD: Pressemelding: Sletting av gjeld fra den norske skipseksportkampanjen
UD: Vedlegg til pressemelding: Sletting av gjeld etter den norske skipseksportkampanjen (1976-1980)

Hugo Chavez sin tale til FNs Generalforsamling

september 21, 2006

Representatives of the governments of the world, good morning to all of you. First of all, I would like to invite you, very respectfully, to those who have not read this book, to read it.

Noam Chomsky, one of the most prestigious American and world intellectuals, Noam Chomsky, and this is one of his most recent books, ‘Hegemony or Survival: The Imperialist Strategy of the United States.'» [Holds up book, waves it in front of General Assembly.] «It’s an excellent book to help us understand what has been happening in the world throughout the 20th century, and what’s happening now, and the greatest threat looming over our planet.

The hegemonic pretensions of the American empire are placing at risk the very survival of the human species. We continue to warn you about this danger and we appeal to the people of the United States and the world to halt this threat, which is like a sword hanging over our heads. I had considered reading from this book, but, for the sake of time,» [flips through the pages, which are numerous] «I will just leave it as a recommendation.

It reads easily, it is a very good book, I’m sure Madame [President] you are familiar with it. It appears in English, in Russian, in Arabic, in German. I think that the first people who should read this book are our brothers and sisters in the United States, because their threat is right in their own house.

The devil is right at home. The devil, the devil himself, is right in the house.

«And the devil came here yesterday. Yesterday the devil came here. Right here.» [crosses himself] «And it smells of sulfur still today.

Yesterday, ladies and gentlemen, from this rostrum, the president of the United States, the gentleman to whom I refer as the devil, came here, talking as if he owned the world. Truly. As the owner of the world.

I think we could call a psychiatrist to analyze yesterday’s statement made by the president of the United States. As the spokesman of imperialism, he came to share his nostrums, to try to preserve the current pattern of domination, exploitation and pillage of the peoples of the world.

An Alfred Hitchcock movie could use it as a scenario. I would even propose a title: «The Devil’s Recipe.»

As Chomsky says here, clearly and in depth, the American empire is doing all it can to consolidate its system of domination. And we cannot allow them to do that. We cannot allow world dictatorship to be consolidated.

The world parent’s statement — cynical, hypocritical, full of this imperial hypocrisy from the need they have to control everything.

They say they want to impose a democratic model. But that’s their democratic model. It’s the false democracy of elites, and, I would say, a very original democracy that’s imposed by weapons and bombs and firing weapons.

What a strange democracy. Aristotle might not recognize it or others who are at the root of democracy.

What type of democracy do you impose with marines and bombs?

The president of the United States, yesterday, said to us, right here, in this room, and I’m quoting, «Anywhere you look, you hear extremists telling you can escape from poverty and recover your dignity through violence, terror and martyrdom.»

Wherever he looks, he sees extremists. And you, my brother — he looks at your color, and he says, oh, there’s an extremist. Evo Morales, the worthy president of Bolivia, looks like an extremist to him.

The imperialists see extremists everywhere. It’s not that we are extremists. It’s that the world is waking up. It’s waking up all over. And people are standing up.

I have the feeling, dear world dictator, that you are going to live the rest of your days as a nightmare because the rest of us are standing up, all those who are rising up against American imperialism, who are shouting for equality, for respect, for the sovereignty of nations.

Yes, you can call us extremists, but we are rising up against the empire, against the model of domination.

The president then — and this he said himself, he said: «I have come to speak directly to the populations in the Middle East, to tell them that my country wants peace.»

That’s true. If we walk in the streets of the Bronx, if we walk around New York, Washington, San Diego, in any city, San Antonio, San Francisco, and we ask individuals, the citizens of the United States, what does this country want? Does it want peace? They’ll say yes.

But the government doesn’t want peace. The government of the United States doesn’t want peace. It wants to exploit its system of exploitation, of pillage, of hegemony through war.

It wants peace. But what’s happening in Iraq? What happened in Lebanon? In Palestine? What’s happening? What’s happened over the last 100 years in Latin America and in the world? And now threatening Venezuela — new threats against Venezuela, against Iran?

He spoke to the people of Lebanon. Many of you, he said, have seen how your homes and communities were caught in the crossfire. How cynical can you get? What a capacity to lie shamefacedly. The bombs in Beirut with millimetric precision?

This is crossfire? He’s thinking of a western, when people would shoot from the hip and somebody would be caught in the crossfire.

This is imperialist, fascist, assassin, genocidal, the empire and Israel firing on the people of Palestine and Lebanon. That is what happened. And now we hear, «We’re suffering because we see homes destroyed.’

The president of the United States came to talk to the peoples — to the peoples of the world. He came to say — I brought some documents with me, because this morning I was reading some statements, and I see that he talked to the people of Afghanistan, the people of Lebanon, the people of Iran. And he addressed all these peoples directly.

And you can wonder, just as the president of the United States addresses those peoples of the world, what would those peoples of the world tell him if they were given the floor? What would they have to say?

And I think I have some inkling of what the peoples of the south, the oppressed people think. They would say, «Yankee imperialist, go home.» I think that is what those people would say if they were given the microphone and if they could speak with one voice to the American imperialists.

And that is why, Madam President, my colleagues, my friends, last year we came here to this same hall as we have been doing for the past eight years, and we said something that has now been confirmed — fully, fully confirmed.

I don’t think anybody in this room could defend the system. Let’s accept — let’s be honest. The U.N. system, born after the Second World War, collapsed. It’s worthless.

Oh, yes, it’s good to bring us together once a year, see each other, make statements and prepare all kinds of long documents, and listen to good speeches, like Abel’s yesterday, or President Mullah’s . Yes, it’s good for that.

And there are a lot of speeches, and we’ve heard lots from the president of Sri Lanka, for instance, and the president of Chile.

But we, the assembly, have been turned into a merely deliberative organ. We have no power, no power to make any impact on the terrible situation in the world. And that is why Venezuela once again proposes, here, today, 20 September, that we re-establish the United Nations.

Last year, Madam, we made four modest proposals that we felt to be crucially important. We have to assume the responsibility our heads of state, our ambassadors, our representatives, and we have to discuss it.

The first is expansion, and Mullah talked about this yesterday right here. The Security Council, both as it has permanent and non-permanent categories, (inaudible) developing countries and LDCs must be given access as new permanent members. That’s step one.

Second, effective methods to address and resolve world conflicts, transparent decisions.

Point three, the immediate suppression — and that is something everyone’s calling for — of the anti-democratic mechanism known as the veto, the veto on decisions of the Security Council.

Let me give you a recent example. The immoral veto of the United States allowed the Israelis, with impunity, to destroy Lebanon. Right in front of all of us as we stood there watching, a resolution in the council was prevented.

Fourthly, we have to strengthen, as we’ve always said, the role and the powers of the secretary general of the United Nations.

Yesterday, the secretary general practically gave us his speech of farewell. And he recognized that over the last 10 years, things have just gotten more complicated; hunger, poverty, violence, human rights violations have just worsened. That is the tremendous consequence of the collapse of the United Nations system and American hegemonistic pretensions.

Madam, Venezuela a few years ago decided to wage this battle within the United Nations by recognizing the United Nations, as members of it that we are, and lending it our voice, our thinking.

Our voice is an independent voice to represent the dignity and the search for peace and the reformulation of the international system; to denounce persecution and aggression of hegemonistic forces on the planet.

This is how Venezuela has presented itself. Bolivar’s home has sought a nonpermanent seat on the Security Council.

Let’s see. Well, there’s been an open attack by the U.S. government, an immoral attack, to try and prevent Venezuela from being freely elected to a post in the Security Council.

The imperium is afraid of truth, is afraid of independent voices. It calls us extremists, but they are the extremists.

And I would like to thank all the countries that have kindly announced their support for Venezuela, even though the ballot is a secret one and there’s no need to announce things.

But since the imperium has attacked, openly, they strengthened the convictions of many countries. And their support strengthens us.

Mercosur, as a bloc, has expressed its support, our brothers in Mercosur. Venezuela, with Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, is a full member of Mercosur.

And many other Latin American countries, CARICOM, Bolivia have expressed their support for Venezuela. The Arab League, the full Arab League has voiced its support. And I am immensely grateful to the Arab world, to our Arab brothers, our Caribbean brothers, the African Union. Almost all of Africa has expressed its support for Venezuela and countries such as Russia or China and many others.

I thank you all warmly on behalf of Venezuela, on behalf of our people, and on behalf of the truth, because Venezuela, with a seat on the Security Council, will be expressing not only Venezuela’s thoughts, but it will also be the voice of all the peoples of the world, and we will defend dignity and truth.

Over and above all of this, Madam President, I think there are reasons to be optimistic. A poet would have said «helplessly optimistic,» because over and above the wars and the bombs and the aggressive and the preventive war and the destruction of entire peoples, one can see that a new era is dawning.

As Silvio Rodriguez says, the era is giving birth to a heart. There are alternative ways of thinking. There are young people who think differently. And this has already been seen within the space of a mere decade. It was shown that the end of history was a totally false assumption, and the same was shown about Pax Americana and the establishment of the capitalist neo-liberal world. It has been shown, this system, to generate mere poverty. Who believes in it now?

What we now have to do is define the future of the world. Dawn is breaking out all over. You can see it in Africa and Europe and Latin America and Oceanea. I want to emphasize that optimistic vision.

We have to strengthen ourselves, our will to do battle, our awareness. We have to build a new and better world.

Venezuela joins that struggle, and that’s why we are threatened. The U.S. has already planned, financed and set in motion a coup in Venezuela, and it continues to support coup attempts in Venezuela and elsewhere.

President Michelle Bachelet reminded us just a moment ago of the horrendous assassination of the former foreign minister, Orlando Letelier.

And I would just add one thing: Those who perpetrated this crime are free. And that other event where an American citizen also died were American themselves. They were CIA killers, terrorists.

And we must recall in this room that in just a few days there will be another anniversary. Thirty years will have passed from this other horrendous terrorist attack on the Cuban plane, where 73 innocents died, a Cubana de Aviacion airliner.

And where is the biggest terrorist of this continent who took the responsibility for blowing up the plane? He spent a few years in jail in Venezuela. Thanks to CIA and then government officials, he was allowed to escape, and he lives here in this country, protected by the government.

And he was convicted. He has confessed to his crime. But the U.S. government has double standards. It protects terrorism when it wants to.

And this is to say that Venezuela is fully committed to combating terrorism and violence. And we are one of the people who are fighting for peace.

Luis Posada Carriles is the name of that terrorist who is protected here. And other tremendously corrupt people who escaped from Venezuela are also living here under protection: a group that bombed various embassies, that assassinated people during the coup. They kidnapped me and they were going to kill me, but I think God reached down and our people came out into the streets and the army was too, and so I’m here today.

But these people who led that coup are here today in this country protected by the American government. And I accuse the American government of protecting terrorists and of having a completely cynical discourse.

We mentioned Cuba. Yes, we were just there a few days ago. We just came from there happily.

And there you see another era born. The Summit of the 15, the Summit of the Nonaligned, adopted a historic resolution. This is the outcome document. Don’t worry, I’m not going to read it.

But you have a whole set of resolutions here that were adopted after open debate in a transparent matter — more than 50 heads of state. Havana was the capital of the south for a few weeks, and we have now launched, once again, the group of the nonaligned with new momentum.

And if there is anything I could ask all of you here, my companions, my brothers and sisters, it is to please lend your good will to lend momentum to the Nonaligned Movement for the birth of the new era, to prevent hegemony and prevent further advances of imperialism.

And as you know, Fidel Castro is the president of the nonaligned for the next three years, and we can trust him to lead the charge very efficiently.

Unfortunately they thought, «Oh, Fidel was going to die.» But they’re going to be disappointed because he didn’t. And he’s not only alive, he’s back in his green fatigues, and he’s now presiding the nonaligned.

So, my dear colleagues, Madam President, a new, strong movement has been born, a movement of the south. We are men and women of the south.

With this document, with these ideas, with these criticisms, I’m now closing my file. I’m taking the book with me. And, don’t forget, I’m recommending it very warmly and very humbly to all of you.

We want ideas to save our planet, to save the planet from the imperialist threat. And hopefully in this very century, in not too long a time, we will see this, we will see this new era, and for our children and our grandchildren a world of peace based on the fundamental principles of the United Nations, but a renewed United Nations.

And maybe we have to change location. Maybe we have to put the United Nations somewhere else; maybe a city of the south. We’ve proposed Venezuela.

You know that my personal doctor had to stay in the plane. The chief of security had to be left in a locked plane. Neither of these gentlemen was allowed to arrive and attend the U.N. meeting. This is another abuse and another abuse of power on the part of the Devil. It smells of sulfur here, but God is with us and I embrace you all.

May God bless us all. Good day to you.

Discovery Channel og media etter 9/11

september 19, 2006

For noen dager siden så jeg et program kalt «War reporters». Det var et meget godt program. Eneste bakdelen var at det gikk kl 4 om natten. Det ble raskt veldig tydelig hvorfor programmet gikk kl 4 fremfor i beste sendetid. Programmet sa helt tydelig at USA hadde støttet Saddam Hussein og Osama bin Laden. Og programmet viste bilder fra journalister som ble drept av amerikansk ild, for eksempel på Palestine Hotel i Bagdad. De visste at mange vestlige journalister bodde nettopp her, men ville kanskje sende en beskjed om at nå ble det vel ærlig rapportering. Det vil vi ha en slutt på. Se hva som kan skje…

Inntil for 3-4 år siden var Discovery Channel en veldig bra kanal, med flotte programmer både innen vitenskap, forskning, samfunnsvitenskap og krig, samt et og annet underholdningsprogram. Nå er dette snudd helt på hodet. Det forandret seg ikke lenge etter invasjonen av Irak. Første gang jeg merket den åpenbare propagandaen var i et program om invasjonen av Irak. USA ble fremstilt som helter som kom til denne grusomme delen av verden med bare gode hensikter om å innføre demokrati. Så ble de skutt på fra alle vinkler, men klarte på et mirakuløst vis å overleve takket sin gode teknologi. Som vi fortsatt hører i talene fra Bush den dag i dag, ble irakerne i dette programmet framstilt som gale terrorister som hatet frihet, og kjempet mot det med alle midler.

Sannheten er naturligvis en ganske annen, selv om det også finnes elementer av terrorister i den irakiske motstandsbevegelsen. Den har blitt mer og mer radikalisert ettersom USAs okkupasjon har blitt mer brutal og mer langvarig. Nå er det i tillegg en borgerkrig der. Takk USA.

Discovery Channel har vært med på dette nærmest helt fra begynnelsen av. Siden har også National Geographic fulgt etter, og delvis også Animal Planet. Nå finner vi relativt ofte programmer med den hensikt å rekruttere soldater til US Army. I tillegg har det blitt flere og flere av programmene som forteller oss hvor farlig terrorisme er, og at USAs «kamp mot terror» er det eneste som beskytter oss. Med andre ord en kampanje for å spre frykt. Interessant nok det samme som bin Laden ønsker mer enn noe annet. Riktignok har Bush og bin Laden forskjellige hensikter. Bush ønsker kontroll over oljen i Midtøsten, og bin Laden ønsker en krig mellom religioner og at alle muslimer skal kjempe mot USA og Vesten. Effekten er derimot den samme. Frykt spres, og hardt opparbeidede sivile rettigheter blir utvannet. Nå ser vi hvordan USA står i spissen mot Geneve-konvensjonen, med England hakk i hæl. Land over hele verden har innført sin egen «Patriot Act», som tramper på sivile rettigheter. Utvidet overvåking finner ikke bare sted i USA, det foregår høyst trolig over hele verden, også i Norge. Amerikanske fly med fanger har også landet i Norge, på sin vei mot torturfengsler i Øst-Europa, Midtøsten eller Guantanamo Bay.

Dessverre spiller Discovery Channel på lag med Bush og Blair i dette. Programmene har også forandret seg kraftig. Det har vært et klart skifte fra seriøse vitenskapsprogrammer over til underholdningsprogrammer som for eksempel «Myth-busters». Det er også forandring i mange enkeltprogrammer, spesielt med tanke på «patriotisme». Nå er det amerikanske flagg på «Myth-busters» nesten uansett hvilken kameravinkel de har. Dette eksisterte ikke før.

Det samme ser man i mediabildet forøvrig, også i Europa. I tiden før og etter invasjonen av Irak, var europeiske medier generelt ganske skeptiske til USA. Det har forandret seg mye. Nå fins er det sjelden kritiske programmer eller nyhetsdekninger om hva USA (eller Vesten forøvrig) gjør i Midtøsten. Det eneste som rapporteres er at x antall bomber har gått av og drept x antall mennesker. Det rapporteres knapt om sivile er drept, eller militære og paramilitære. Det rapporteres ikke om at antallet amerikanske soldater i Irak har gått opp, og antallet amerikanske soldater i Afghanistan gått ned. Det rapporteres ikke om at det ikke fantes den type terror i Irak som vi nå ser. Det rapporteres ikke om at USA til stadighet sier at Saddam Hussein hadde forbindelser til Al Qaida, bin Laden og 9/11, selv om alle med den minste kunnskap om området vet at dette er en blank løgn. Saddam Hussein og bin Laden hatet hverandre, av åpenbare grunner. Hussein er sekulær, mens bin Laden i høyeste grad er religiøs. De større bildene blir helle ikke rapportert om, som for eksempel USAs planer om «det nye Midtøsten» som var en av hoveddrivkretene bak Israels angrep på Libanon.

Medias dekning av nyheter har blitt mye dårligere de siste 3-4 årene. Man kan hyle alt man orker om at Vesten har «uavhengige medier», men effekten er akkurat den samme som om de var rendyrka propagandainstrumenter lignende det Sovjet brukte. Dekningen av henholdsvis USAs og Sovjets invasjoner av Irak og Afghanistan er slående like i de nasjonale mediene. I begge tilfeller rapporteres knapt noe fra ofrene. Omtrent det eneste som diskuteres er militære strategier. Begge mediene opererer(/opererte) som heiagjenger for de militære. Det var ikke mulig for dem å gjøre noe galt, uansett hvor grusomme forbrytelser de begikk.

Media er rett og slett blitt propagandainstrumenter for verdens kapitalinteresser (som de militære er en del av). Det er en naturlig konsekvens når verdens kapitalinteresser eiere mediene, og de samme mediene er avhengig av støtte fra kapital gjennom reklameinntekter og sponsorer. Løsningen er at media eies og drives av det sivile samfunnet («folket»).

Naturally the common people don’t want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor in America, nor in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. …Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.

-Hermann Göhring under Nürnberg-prosessen 1945-46.


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