Boston Bombings. By Mazin Qumsiyeh

Via: Popular Resistance.

At first I thought I should not comment on the Boston bombings as it is obvious that we in Palestine, under siege and regular bombardment would clearly sympathize with the victims. But then I saw the usual pundits on mainstream media trying to spin the tragedy to serve racism.

The Israeli Consul-General in Boston told the Jerusalem Post that “Boston is a very quiet and calm place, especially when we come from Israel…..Still, the Jewish community and the consulate are on alert and security has been increased”.  He speaks as if he represents Jews of Boston (and only them) and insinuates as usual that problems in Palestine (‘Israel’) are because of the native “Arabs” not because of the Zionist colonization.

CNN gave extensive time to the Zionist ex-congresswoman Jane Harman who claimed this terrorist attack is likely linked to AlQaeda Islamists while trying to connect herself to victims when she supports terrorism herself. Besides her appalling record in voting for more weapons and money to Israel to kill Palestinians, she was unashamedly more pro-Israel to the point of challenging US interests on several occasions. Continue reading

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The Practice of Neoliberalism: How Think Tanks, Foundations, Big Oil and the CIA Undermine Democracy. By David Livingstone

Via: Global Research.

Canada’s Fraser Institute

How American right-wing foundations, Big Oil and the CIA collaborate to undermine the social democratic systems of Canada and other countries around the world.

Since the early 1970s, there has been a broad international agenda led by right-wing American foundations to sway public opinion towards greater acceptance of an economic philosophy called Neoliberalism, of which Canada’s Fraser Institute has been a pivotal part.

It is by tracing the connections between the Fraser Institute and several prominent Canadian politicians, like Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and other far-right conservatives, including BC Premier Campbell of British Columbia, that we can identify the source of their disdain for democracy, a penchant for slashing social programs, their unconditional support for American foreign policy expeditions, and an utter refusal to condemn the gross human rights abuses of Zionism in Israel.

Every year, the Fraser Institute announces a Tax Freedom Day, the first day of the year when the country of Canada has theoretically earned enough income to fund its annual tax burden, and its “Report Cards” of schools and the health care system, designed to convince Canadians of the importance of reducing public spending and privatizing these and other social services.

As reported in The Tyee, Paul Shaker, dean of the faculty of education at Simon Fraser University, said recently:

“Part of the international movement of neoliberalism is to treat schools as simply another service that can be commodified and deserve no special place in society. This movement has been coming along since Thatcher and Reagan, and reached a fevered pitch over the last 10 years.” If you want to analyze why things have deteriorated in Vancouver, Shaker said, “it probably has to do with this global and political movement.” The premise of Neoliberalism, and that of Neoclassical Economic theories in general, is the pessimistic view that human beings are selfish creatures. It develops from a crass darwinian attitude, that deems that people aught to be responsible for their own “failings”, like poverty, and therefore, that governments should not provide services to assist them when they are in need.

Ultimately, the pursuit of self-interest is thought to create efficiencies that should be favored over any form of government activity. However, while the profit motive is certainly tolerable in certain cases, it is actually contrary to the public good in others, as in cases of essential human needs, like education, health, water, energy sources and so on.

Essentially, Neoliberalism draws support from the philosophy of Adam Smith, who maintained it was not necessary for governments or any other social organizations to enforce a redistribution of wealth, because the free pursuit of self-interest would create enough surplus to benefit all. The disguised intent is to induce societies to expose what should be publicly held assets or industries to exploitation by private interests, and to then prevent governments from taxing these corporations, or regulating their activities in ways that might restrain their lust for profits.

The chief propagandists of Neoliberalism, were Milton Friedman and Friedrich Hayek, who, in 1947, founded the Mont Pelerin Society, to coordinate the creation of an international network of think-tanks and foundations, to spread their philosophy of corporate greed. The basis of their propaganda was a scare-tactic of equating “big government” with totalitarianism. In Capitalism and Freedom (1962), Milton Friedman proposed that centralized control of the economy was always accompanied with political repression. Similarly, in The Road to Serfdom (1944), Hayek argued that “Economic control is not merely control of a sector of human life which can be separated from the rest; it is the control of the means for all our ends.” Continue reading

Behind Brand Israel: Israel’s recent propaganda efforts. By Ben White

Via: Electronic Intifada.

“The Delegitimization Challenge” report from the influential Israeli think tank the Reut Institute has put the spotlight on efforts by Israel and the Zionist lobby to counter the growing movement for justice in Palestine, and specifically, the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign. The work done by Reut has rightly attracted attention, but it is only one (particularly prominent) example of a wider trend, as the Israeli government and global Zionist groups mobilize to fight the threat to the apartheid system.
It was an issue discussed when Israeli policymakers convened for the recent Herzilya Conference where there was a session called “Winning the Battle of the Narrative: Strategic Communication for Israel.” There was also an associated working paper, prepared by a team that included Ido Aharoni from Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), along with senior officials from the prime minister’s office, public relations firms and two key lobby groups — The Israel Project in the US, and Bicom from the UK (“Winning the Battle of the Narrative” (PDF)).

An additional working paper produced for the Herzliya conference was called “The ‘Soft Warfare’ against Israel: Motives and Solution Levers,” produced by a mix of academics and representatives from the Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education (IMPACT-SE), the Institute for Policy and Strategy, NGO Monitor and Israel’s MFA (“The ‘Soft Warfare’ against Israel: Motives and Solution Levers” (PDF)).

At the end of last year, another significant conference was convened by Israel’s MFA in Jerusalem, called the Global Forum for Combating Antisemitism. Convened by far-right Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and Likud Minister of Knesset and settler Yuli Edelstein, included in the program was a working group called Delegitimization of Israel: “Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions.” The aim was to “come up with imaginative, effective and successful solutions to counter this evil [of BDS],” forging strategies of “defense” and “offense.” Continue reading

J STREET – The New Smiling Zionist Lobby. By Mark Bruzonsky

Art By Naji Al AliVia: MiddleEast.org.

AIPAC, The American Israel Public Affairs Committee, has done its job for decades. The Israeli Zionists, including the new J Street minions, appreciate that and know it will continue pushing and cowering, threatening and intimidating. The Bad Cop is not going away, and in fact is more powerful than ever.

Still, the Israelis Zionists, themselves of somewhat different shades, also know that different times call for different measures and different tactics. They know as well that different people respond to different approaches and that the great majority of American Jews are liberal and solidly behind Obama. They know as well that liberal American Jews are increasingly uneasy about an Israel too much in the negative news and a “Jewish Lobby” too exposed.

And so with the new J Street, it’s not so much that they are hedging their bets, rather they are simply playing all sides of the street.

After the 1982 war the Israeli Zionists and their American Jewish patrons realized it was time to start diversifying. AIPAC, the Capitol Hill giant, then created the Near East Institute (NEI), which became it’s media and think-tank arm. Years before JINSA, The Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs, had been spun off to deal with the Pentagon. Other organizations, including ADL and the Presidents Conference, were further bulked up to deal with the White House and State Department. Many major magazines and media organizations were controlled, and in some cases bought outright, by Zionist personalities, a few biggies like Marty Peretz and Mort Zuckerman actually publicly stating they were pledged to help and defend Israel. Continue reading