Africa and Palestinian Statehood at the UN

Via: Pambazuka News.

Lessons for Decolonisation
Horace Campbell

‘Social justice and transformation in Africa and Palestine are inextricably linked,’ writes Horace Campbell. The ‘demilitarisation of the region can only be secured by uniting the peace and justice forces in all parts of the world.’


AFRICA, PALESTINE AND THE WORLD CONFERENCE AGAINST RACISM

It was ten years ago in September 2001 at the World Conference against Racism (WCAR) when the collaboration between the anti-racist forces of the world and the anti-colonial forces came together in Durban. This WCAR brought the issues of racism, reparations and the oppression of the Palestinian peoples to the centre of the international agenda. A clear programme of action had been developed to reverse colonialism and for the repair of the harms done to humanity by colonialism, racism and all forms of oppression. Indeed, the full title of the conference was the Third World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerances.

No programme of action could be carried out because very soon after the conference on 11 September 2001, the world was carried into a new period of militarism and imperial aggression. Questions of the injustice of capital and neoliberal exploitation took a back seat at UN meetings. 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

Those who would destroy Haiti would destroy all sovereign peoples. By Professor Emeritus Willie Thompson

Via: San Francisco Bay View.


In the Haitian tradition of making a way out of no way, Angelo Meyanse, 13, collects bricks from the ruins of an old church to build a new home for his family six days after the earthquake, on Jan. 18. This is the church in Leogone where the great Haitian liberator Jean-Jacque Dessalines was married in the 18th century. – Photo: Carolyn Cole, LA Times

Haiti, your awesome revolt in 1791 against the revolting barbarity of French enslavement of the Africans was preceded by many revolts of the enslaved African-Haitians beginning as early as 1522. You never accepted that Africans at home and in the Diaspora can be enslaved, can be deprived of their property, liberty and humanity with impunity. African Haitians rejected that crime against humanity and unleashed the “irritated genie of African vindication and liberation.” But you fought alone, dying but fighting back.

I was not there in 1493 when Spain began its extermination campaign against the native Arawaks and enslaved Africans from Guinea, Angola and the Congo in 1508. I was absent when the planters used torture, terror and death to increase your productivity which “supplied two thirds of the overseas trade of France and was the greatest individual market for the European slave trade.” San Domingo “was the greatest colony in the world, the pride of France, and the envy of every other imperialist nation. The whole structure rested on the labor of half a million enslaved Africans. I should have been there when the irritated genie of African vengeance and liberation delivered its swift and awesome response.

I sent no condolences when Makandal, the Guinean, was executed in Limbe, when Boukman was murdered, when Toussaint was betrayed by the “phantom of liberty” and mercilessly starved to death in a French prison on the personal orders of Napoleon Bonaparte. I should have been there when Dessalines chose to take up the “irritated genie” of vengeance and liberation, rejected the deceitful “phantom of liberty” and was later assassinated. Continue reading