John Pilger is an Emmy Award winning investigative journalist and filmmaker.  His compelling documentaries have won major recognition in the U.S. and Europe and around the world.  He is the recipient of the Royal Television Society’s Best Documentary and many other awards.  The British Film Institute includes his 1970 film Year Zero, the Silent Death of
Texas’ new anti-abortion law is one of the most restrictive in the developed world.[1] But no surprise that the brouhaha over women’s right to abortion services has nothing to do with honoring their personal autonomy and little to do with fetal mortality. Rather, the fight is grounded in partisan politics. Historian Heather Cox Richardson provides More The
Looking back on it now, the 1990s were an age of innocence for America. The Cold War was over and our leaders promised us a “peace dividend.” There was no TSA to make us take off our shoes at airports (how many bombs have they found in those billions of shoes?). The government could not More The post How Can America Wake Up From Its Post-9/11 Nightmare? appeared first
One of the bloodiest days in American labor history occurred on the outskirts of Lattimer, Pennsylvania, on Sunday, September 10th, 1897. Roughly 400 anthracite coal miners ( the vast majority of them foreign born eastern Europeans) had had enough of the darkened servitude imposed on them by the Calvin Pardee Company. The miners worked 60 More The post That
Last week’s jobs report filled news accounts with stories of gloom and doom. The 235,000 new jobs created in August was well below most projections. The theme was that something had gone seriously wrong with the economy and we should be very worried about the prospects for the labor market and the economy through the More The post The Economic Recovery: Where
On 2 September 2021, CounterPunch published my article ‘Confessions of a Secret Controlled Demolitions Special Operative for 911’. Some readers believe this story is entirely true, and confirms suspicions they “have always known to be true” about 9-11 being “an inside job.” Other readers believe this story is a hoax, something like the Piltdown Man More
The media criticizes Biden for the wrong reasons, but it doesn’t mean he should be praised. Biden’s decision to pull the American troops from Afghanistan put a bitter end to his honeymoon with the liberal press. But only because the mainstream press seems to be pulling the rug from under the President’s feet doesn’t mean More The post Why We Shouldn’t Congratulate
Noam Chomsky is perhaps the world’s most renowned public intellectual. However, his courage in exposing the war crimes and human rights violations engaged in by the US state has made him a leading target of guardians of the notion that the United States is a force for freedom and justice in the world. In retaliation More The post Noam Chomsky and the Khmer Rouge
On Monday, August 30, at 3:29 p.m. Eastern Time, a C-17 transport plane took off from Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, signaling the end of America’s longest war. It was a war that took the lives of at least 48,000 Afghan civilians, 2,461 U.S. service members, 66,000Afghan national military police, and 1,144 NATO allied service
I’m sorry, but learning that old Ed Asner carked it last week in LA, at 91, was some of the best news I’ve heard in some time. Christos, I needed the good news. If he hadn’t died, of no unnatural causes, I never would have stumble-bungled across his 2017 book in my Alexandrianesque library I’ve More The post Ed Asner: The Grouchy ‘Marxist’: RIP appeared first on CounterPunch.org.
On August 8 composer Mikis Theodorakis was laid to earth in the city of Chania, in western Crete. He was ninety-six years old at the time of his death. But he had lived more lives—and certainly helped change far more lives—than most mortals could ever dream of. This short memoir, devoted to the memory of More The post Remembering Mikis Theodorakis appeared first
Americans believe the ratio between CEO and worker pay should be no higher than 7 to 1, according to one academic survey. Last year, in the middle of a pandemic, average CEO pay ran hundreds of times greater than typical employee pay. At 58 U.S. corporations, the CEO-worker pay gap was more than 1,000 to More The post Four CEO Pay-Related Taxes in Play on Capitol
If crisis creates opportunity, we couldn’t possibly have squandered the possibilities presented by 9/11 more spectacularly. We certainly couldn’t have failed its tests more completely. Twenty years after 9/11, it is clear that the United States is ruled by idiots and that we, the people, are complicit with their moronic behavior. We had to do More The post
Oracle Park is where the Giants play in San Francisco. (It used to be PacBell Park. Can’t tell the corporate sponsors without a scorecard.) Unite Here is a union representing some 270,000 US and Canadian workers in what’s called “the hospitality industry.” Its members are mostly women and people of color. Bon Appetit is a More The
They weren’t kidding when they called Afghanistan the “graveyard of empires.” Indeed, that cemetery has just taken another imperial body. And it wasn’t pretty, was it? Not that anyone should be surprised. Even after 20 years of preparation, a burial never is. In fact, the shock and awe(fulness) in Kabul and Washington over these last More The post What Really
It’s been twenty years since 9/11 but it feels more like twenty years of 9/11. That’s probably because an entire industrial complex has been constructed around a concerted effort to keep those wounds fresh and harvest the anguish they cause in order to manipulate a permanently traumatized nation into consenting to endless warfare and our More
Refugees and asylum seekers provide rich pickings for demagogues and political opportunists. The Australian approach politicises their plight by arguing that they are illegitimate depending on the way they arrive, namely, by boat. The twentieth anniversary of the MV Tampa’s attempt to dock at Christmas Island with over 400 such individuals inaugurated
On August 30, 2021, President Joe Biden committed the federal government to help Louisiana and Mississippi recover from Hurricane Ida’s devastation for “as long as it takes for you to recover.” With several federal agencies working on the massive recovery effort, the president added during the virtual briefing at the White House that “it’s in moments like
Twenty years have now passed since 9/11. The 20 years since those terrible attacks have been marked by endless wars, harsh immigration crackdowns, and expanded federal law enforcement powers that have cost us our privacy and targeted entire communities based on nothing more than race, religion, or ethnicity. Those policies have also come at a More The post
The liberal state has always been as strong as the political and social situation and the interests of society demanded. – Franz Neumann Legalism can sanction lawlessness. – Daniel Kato But this subtlety of accommodating something that was anything but subtle reveals the dark side of constitutional flexibility. If it is the case that “Our More The post How
Twenty years after the 9/11 attacks, the US government is finally — well, probably, kinda sorta — ending its lost war with Afghanistan, drawing down its presence in Iraq, and reducing the heat of its “global war on terror” from a rolling boil to hot-tub temperature. Good news, right? After two decades of getting groped More The post
Few who offer their prayers this September in the hallowed plaza where the Twin Towers once stood will be aware that the September 11 memorial echoes a 1987 Holocaust “counter-memorial” in Kassel, Germany. Like our memorial, the German monument consists of a hollow in the shape of what had once been there, into which water flows. But More The post The Victims
The world would remember 9/11 as a monster. 9/11 was a daytime spectacle of planes flying into the North & South Towers of the World Trade Center and Pentagon; it was a mass murder, a psychological assault on the self-confidence of an imperial nation. 9/11 was a magical act of Islamic militancy. A swiftly planned More The post Rest in Peace 9/11 (2001-2021)
“A Son” and “She Had a Dream”, both from Tunisia, are among new productions distributed by ArtMattan Films the U.S. this fall. The compelling plot of “A Son” opens with the Ben Youssef family picnicking among friends in the Tunisian countryside. Meriem (Najla Ben Abdallah) is an outgoing professional woman, who with Fares (Sami Bouajila), More The post Noteworthy
The American withdrawal from military intervention in Afghanistan continues a broader American as well as European disengagement from the Middle East. Greater US energy independence and a shift on the part of Europe to Russian oil, fatigue among Americans over their “endless wars” in the region, and a perceived need to “pivot” to the challenge More The post
I attended the American Public Health Association in Atlanta in late October 2001. Against the backdrop of daily bombing runs projected on the megascreen of the CNN Center, I thought that I might find fellow health workers opposed to the war. After all, UN agencies such as the World Food Program and UNICEF had been drawing attention to the humanitarian crisis
Invoking the played-out trope of the American Dream, with its symbolism of dogged aspiration and hard work, has of course long been a staple in US politics. The truth here is that Youngkin’s father worked in finance and played basketball for Duke University—hardly a shabby background for his son, the aspiring politician. The website shuffles-off the Carlyle
The Census Bureau recently released the first-round of results from the 2020 census and its findings shocked many, especially older white, conservative Americans. William Frey, of the Brookings Institute, reports, “Yet most notable is the small decline in white population — the first in any census since 1790. During much of the nation’s history,
When reading about anti-maskers in Los Angeles attacking a breast cancer patient seeking care in a medical facility, and then reading about Boston College’s policy of not requiring masks in classrooms this fall with expected faculty pushback, I wondered where the hell all of this led? As the echoes of 1960s’ solidarity lose even their place in the rearview
Sept . 11 is approaching – the 20th anniversary of the most startling event in the lifetime of most adults. The notorious Muslim suicide terror attack of Sept. 11, 2001, killed nearly 3,000 Americans and horrified the world. Nineteen young male fanatics, armed only with boxcutters, hijacked four airliners and flew them like projectiles into More The post Sept.
There’s no nice way to put it. Hundreds of Montanans are now getting sick and dying thanks to the anti-science, anti-mask, anti-vax messages propagated by the insane rhetoric of Republican politicians under the false rubric of “personal responsibility” and “freedom.” But as the costs to society continue to rise exponentially while the more lethal, more
Environmentalist and campaigner Dr Rosemary Mason recently wrote an open letter to the head of the Pesticides Unit at the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Jose Tarazona. (Since this article was written, Jose Tarazona has stepped down from his position and the letter has been forwarded to his successors, Manuela Tiramani and Benedicte Vagenede.) Mason
The August jobs report was somewhat disappointing. The economy added only 235,000 jobs for the month, just 48,000 more than the 187,000 pre-pandemic monthly average under Trump. Seriously, most of us did expect more jobs (my number had been 500,000), but after two months where job growth averaged more than 1 million, some falloff should More The post Cheap
In 2009, when Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and his military brass were pushing for as many as 80,000 additional troops in Afghanistan, only Vice President Joe Biden tried to convince President Barack Obama that the Pentagon’s strategy would not succeed.  He was the administration’s only genuine skeptic regarding Gates’ recommendations for more force.
Trying to remove a proliferation of weeds growing into the siding of our house, pulling out ivy and unidentified vines, and digging out incipient maple trees, I have on a long-sleeved rash guard and pants with socks as protection from mosquitoes and no see-ums and other insects. Though I’m wary of DEET, I probably should More The post Covering All Bases in the
When I spoke at the largest nationwide gathering of freedom activists in Las Vegas and at the national Libertarian Party conference in 2004, I was booed for my criticisms of Bush’s warring and torturing. I was also later booed for opposing torture at the Foundation for Economic Education in Irvington, New York.  Plenty of libertarians were no longer in favor
On June 23, a coalition of Sámi and environmentalist activists erected a protest camp in Nussir, the projected site of a gigantic copper mine in Sápmi, the traditional homeland of the Sámi people, northern Europe’s indigenous inhabitants. Today, Sápmi is divided by the borders of four nation states: Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia. None of More The post
With the money she earns cleaning houses in the morning and an office at night, Virgen Elena Pupo, a 47-year-old Cuban migrant, has managed to raise her family in Washington, D.C., but has not been able to help her parents in Holguín, Cuba. She is separated from her parents by more than 1,246 miles. In More The post The Money That Never Arrives in Cuba appeared first
1. Drinks with Ashraf Ghani The fall of Kabul reminded me of the time, in late November 2001, that I had drinks with Ashraf Ghani. My ex-wife, Mary Weismantel and I were invited by the anthropologist Sidney Mintz to meet Ghani in a VIP suite at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Washington, D.C. When we More The post Kabul on My Mind appeared first on CounterPunch.org.
Larrikin is a word often, and inaccurately used, in Australian political lingo.  Australia’s longest serving Labor Prime Minister, Bob Hawke, was known as one such figure.  He was praised as the great communicator and healer between the forces of labour and capital, enjoyed imbibing, his sports and varied female company.  He could also be vain More The post
When you imagine ending a war, do you imagine the U.S. President lamenting the human cost of the war’s financial expense while simultaneously demanding that Congress increase military spending — and while mentioning new wars that could potentially be launched? Do you picture him blowing up families with missiles from robot airplanes, and committing to More
Interventionist dead-enders are crying crocodile tears over the Taliban’s defeat of the Pentagon and the CIA in Afghanistan because, they say, women’s rights are not likely to be protected by the Taliban.  Oh?  Well, now let’s see. According to the Watson Institute at Brown University, civilian deaths in Afghanistan and Pakistan from 2001 to date More The
I am writing today to share a human touch point regarding the end of the US war in Afghanistan. I worked for much of 2012 in a grassroots nonprofit in Kabul. On Sunday, my dear friend and nine of his family members were killed by a US drone explosion near their home. I’m sending some More The post Ezmerai Ahmadi: a Personal Update on Afghanistan appeared first on CounterPunch.org.
The Taliban’s lightning fast takeover of Afghanistan was amazingly achieved with relatively little killing and bloodshed. Since the rout of the government, an entity essentially installed by the US, the Taliban has been assuring the Afghan people that its governance style will be more moderate than under its previous rule. Many people in Afghanistan
An ill-judged attempt to find out who is to blame for failing to predict the swift victory of the Taliban and the disintegration of Afghan government forces is masking the most significant strategic lessons of the Afghan war. Turning points in history usually come by surprise because, if the powers-that-be of the day could see More The post American Failure:
With the U.S. imposing technology sanctions on China, the world’s electronics industry is facing turbulent times. After the sanctions, Huawei has slipped from its number one slot as a mobile phone supplier—which the company held during the second quarter of 2020—to number seven currently. Commenting on this slide, Huawei’s rotating chairman Guo Ping has
Ibram X. Kendi, in his recent piece in The Atlantic, “There Is No Debate Over Critical Race Theory,” claims we are not in the midst of a “culture war” over race and racism since the “animating force of our current conflict is not our differing values, beliefs, moral codes, or practices.” We aren’t divided, we’re More The post Ibram X. Kendi And Democratic Debate 
Listen to the news this week, and it’s full of stories of Afghan refugees, and stories about Vietnamese refugees half a century ago, along with refugees from Latin America being beaten back at the Mexican border with Guatemala, and the impending wave of refugees that may soon be flowing from places like Madagascar, where climate More The post Refugee
Gender justice advocates have been waiting for far too long for trade justice. Women’s rights organizations have been pointing this out for at least two decades, during a wave of activism around globalization and the role of trade agreements in exacerbating inequality. This activism, epitomized by memorable protests when trade negotiators convened in
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency decided last week to comply with the order of the U.S. Court of Appeals to finally ban the widely used pesticide Chlorpyrifos. And, the fight against Monsanto’’s Roundup (now owned by Bayer) scores courtroom victory after victory. But New York City’s Mayor has decided to renew the city’s toxic pesticide spraying
Politicians in Washington tend to be a pretty arrogant group. They think they can just define their own terms and expect everyone else just to accept these terms at face value. Senator Manchin gives us a great example of this pattern in his Wall Street Journal column complaining about President Biden’s plan for a $3.5 More The post Debt Doesn’t Go Away Just Because
Dear Americans, I wanted to share some thoughts with you on Afghanistan, as it sits atop the rubble of another indifferent imperial folly with the dread of once again living under a fundamentalist authoritarian regime on the horizon. And especially on the American public’s disconnect from its own government’s culpability in spreading misery there and More
“This country is frightening” (Author’s italics.) – Philip Roth, “American Pastoral,” 1997 Republican state legislatures and governors, with Texas leading the way, are dismantling the essence of American democracy, and the conservative Supreme Court is helping them reach their goal. Get ready to kiss goodbye to Roe v. Wade. These conservative demagogues
This year’s Labor Day finds millions of Americans — those who labor in offices — almost bubbling about the prospects for an epic transformation of their workspaces. Within Corporate America, working remotely may soon become a permanent standard operating practice. Imagine that. No more horrific daily commutes. No more stressing in cramped cubicles. And,
“We told you so” rings hollow. In the face of tens of thousands of lives lost, trillions of dollars spent, and countless communities destroyed, pointing out that early critics of the U.S. “war on terror” were accurate seems crass and cruel, sanctimonious and self-serving. But it’s also dangerous to ignore the dissenters. Those of us More The post Can We Learn
Debates will soon begin in Congress over a path to citizenship for up to 10.2 million undocumented individuals, but the run-up to these debates has already been marked by recent court rulings representing significant setbacks for immigrant rights. In July, a federal judge in Texas ruled that DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) is unlawful, continuing
The August job gains were somewhat weaker than expected; although it is not clear that it should be viewed as a seriously negative report. The 235,000 figure is less than half of what most forecasters had been predicting, but it was still associated with a 0.2 percentage point drop in the unemployment rate to 5.2 More The post Why August Wasn’t a Terrible
Labor Day is a good time to reflect upon how American workers have been doing — especially the majority who have been left behind for most of the past 40 years. From 1979 to 2018, the median wage has grown by just 11.6 percent. If we compare this to prior decades, e.g., 1948 to 1979, More The post US Labor’s Future May Depend on Monetary and Fiscal Policy appeared
In May, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken made a visit to Greenland.  In a rather unedifying way, he was called ‘Tony’ by his hosts, a disarming point that was bound to open the floodgates of insincerity.  For all the convivial stuffing, there was a certain sting to the occasion: the previous Trump administration had More The post Blinken Says No to Greenland
Let’s say you’re looking to invest some savings in the expanding micro-chip industry and a friend hands you the 2021 Annual Report of the Delaware (chartered) Corporation, Microchip Technology, a firm based in Chandler, Arizona. You’re a studious type and want to know what the company is producing before deciding if becoming a shareholder-owner is More The
Vaccine refusal and the US’s consequential Delta variant surge has taught us one thing as Americans: we are done for. Like the toxoplasmosis parasite that infects mice brains, causing them to lose their fear of cats, the unvaccinated mice strut around before the cat. But when they become infected with the Delta variant, toxoplasmosis leaves More The post Endless
Tarzan is a neighborhood mutt in Istanbul, his back bending under children who ride him, serving as their target for stone-throwing contests, surviving attempts by dogcatchers to kill him. His luck turns when an American family moves in, making him a coddled pet. Yet when the Americans prepare to leave along with the dog, neighbors More The post Afghanistan
“Ten members of one family — including seven children — are dead after a US drone strike targeting a vehicle in a residential neighborhood of Kabul . . . “The youngest victims of Sunday’s airstrike were two 2-year-old girls, according to family members. “Relatives found the remains of one of the girls, Malika, in the More The post After Afghanistan . . . A Truth
The 16 Year Old, middle class, privileged, argues that meat and other animal produce are essential for his health, his ability to play sport, and the development of his adolescent brain; besides, one person becoming vegetarian/vegan, won’t make any difference to the environmental crisis. The total failure to respond in any meaningful way to the More The post
As our second pandemic Labor Day approaches, Black worker leaders are determined to never again bear the brunt of a national crisis as they have under Covid-19. At least four U.S. employees have now been killed as they tried to enforce mask mandates — and all of them were Black essential workers. Countless other Black More The post The Labor Day Dreams of Black
Image by NASA. You don’t have to read the almost 4,000 pages of the grim new IPCC Climate Report to know the gravity of Earth’s situation where humans are driving at least a million species, including their own, to extinction. We’ve had warnings for a long time, from Joseph Fourier (1824, greenhouse effect), Svante Arrhenius (1896, CO2 emissions), Guy Stewart
Image by Marcus Kauffman. As my wife Chelsea and I drove through Arizona on our annual pilgrimage from California to Montana, orange smoke billowed along the darkened horizon, signals of hearts shattered and landscapes scorched. Days earlier nineteen hot shot firefighters died together as they battled the intense blazes near the mountain town of Yarnell.
Still from Straight Outta Compton. (New Line Cinema) Why does the drug war grind on, decade after decade, immune to reason, often grotesque in its hypocrisy? How can one listen without laughing to the solemn posturing of the U.S. government about the  stings Mexican banks for their washing of drug money, without a word about corresponding drug money-washing
Environmental and climate journalist Robert Hunziker joins CounterPunch+ and CounterPunch Radio to discuss his latest writing about the climate apocalypse unfolding around us. Eric and Robert discuss the Arctic emergency, methane nightmares, the toxic planet, the anthropogenic rocketship, the death of our coral reefs and wetlands, and so much more.
As the 20th anniversary of September 11, 2001 nears, there will be many valuable reflections about that horrific day and about the subsequent “global war on terror” that devastated countless lives around the world. My own focus here is narrower: to briefly consider this disturbing two-decade period in relation to the American Psychological Association
Sarwat Malik, executive director of the Progressive Democrats of New Jersey and an organizer with our Central Jersey Democratic Socialists of America chapter, explained how she nearly refused the vaccine. It wasn’t fair that she would be receiving the vaccine, Sarwat believed, when so many others, like her father, had passed away from the virus. More The
We take racism for granted as a seemingly intractable reality. This is more the case than ever with the rise of critical race theory (CRT). Whereas racism was previously understood to be an attribute of individuals–based on certain beliefs they held–in CRT racism works the other way around: it is said to arise out of More The post Racial Socialism
The Amazon rainforest is arguably the world’s premier asset. Indeed, it’s the world’s most crucial asset in a myriad of ways, nothing on Earth compares. Yet, it is infernally stressed because of inordinate drought. The bulk of the Amazon rainforest is located in Brazil, where, according to the title of an article in NASA, Earth More The post Brazil’s Fierce
Doesn’t everyone want to live in the United States? Don’t all tourists want to visit Disneyland? Don’t all students want to study at Harvard or Stanford? Don’t all actors want to star in Hollywood? Don’t all financiers want to work on Wall Street? Isn’t the American Dream universal? Well, maybe it’s not so in all More The post Lessons from Afghanistan appeared
When the Washington Post first published the names of some of the members of the US armed forces who were killed at Kabul airport by a crazed suicide bomber on August 26 it was sadly too easy to forecast most of the ages.  There they were . . . 20 . . . 22 . . . 20 . . More The post When Will They Ever Learn? Out of Afghanistan, Into the Mire appeared first on CounterPunch.org.
First there was a catastrophic but predictable attack on US and Taliban troops as well as desperate civilians trying to escape the ruins and chaos of the country the US occupier was leaving behind to the victorious Taliban. One or more IS-K terrorists wearing exploding vests filled with shrapnel, possibly backed by other IS fighters More The post Kids Die Last