South Africa | Philippines | USA | Syria | Palestine | Mali | Afghanistan | Wikileaks

Julie Hyland: South Africa: ANC orders security clampdown against miners’ revolt (WSWS)

More than 40,000 workers are now on strike, forcing three leading platinum and gold producers to halt their operations. …
The Marikana massacre was the worst act of police brutality since the days of apartheid. Some 270 miners arrested during the assault were then charged with complicity in the deaths of their 34 colleagues under the notorious apartheid-era “common purpose law”.
Although the charges have been dropped for now, the latest operation has underscored that the interests of the same multinational and South African firms that profited under apartheid remain intact. The Regulation of Gatherings Act now being enforced by the ANC was notoriously employed by the apartheid government. …
[T]he ANC and its partners in the NUM and the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) have as little legitimacy as the white minority regime the ANC replaced 18 years before.
Comprising a thin layer of wealthy and corrupt black officials, they have been the sole beneficiaries of the post-apartheid policy of “black economic empowerment”.

Richard Javad Heydarian: Philippines on frontline of US-China rivalry (Asia Times)

… Manila is turning back on almost two decades of relative strategic independence, beginning with the Philippine Senate’s refusal in 1991 to extend the US’s lease at Subic Bay naval base, a military presence nationalistic lawmakers then assailed as a vestige of colonialism and affront to national sovereignty.
Fast forward to the present, Manila is now actively, if not desperately, courting US military support vis-a-vis China.

Amy Goodman: “Effective Evil” or Progressives’ Best Hope? Glen Ford vs. Michael Eric Dyson on Obama Presidency (Democracy Now)

GLEN FORD: … [W]e at Black Agenda Report have for some time been saying that Obama is not the lesser of evils, but the more effective evil. And we base that on his record and also on his rhetoric at the convention. So, we would prefer to talk about what history-making events have gone down under his presidency.
He’s, first of all, created a model for austerity, a veritable model, with his deficit reduction commission. He’s introduced preventive detention, a law for preventive detention. He’s expanded the theaters of war in drone wars, and he’s made an unremitting assault on international law. And I think that possibly the biggest impact, his presidency—and I’m not talking about his—all this light and airy stuff from the convention, but actual deeds—I think probably what will go down as his biggest contribution to history is a kind of merging of the banks and the state, with $16 trillion being infused into these banks, into Wall Street, under his watch, and the line between Wall Street and the federal government virtually disappearing.

Alison Weir: The Democrats’ Jerusalem Arithmetic (CounterPunch)

Corey Oakley: The left, imperialism and the Syrian revolution (Socialist Alternative)
Antonin Amado, Marc de Miramon: Syria’s propaganda war / Syrie, champ de bataille médiatique ‍(Monde diplomatique)
Karin Leukefeld: Jetzt dominieren Last-Minute-Revolutionäre (Neues Deutschland)

Der syrische Oppositionelle Haytham Manna sieht ursprüngliche Ziele der Erhebung in Gefahr

Naima El Moussaoui: Abschied von einer Zwei-Staaten-Lösung (Qantara)

Sari Nusseibeh, prominenter palästinensischer Philosoph und Präsident der Al-Quds Universität in Jerusalem, hält eine Zwei-Staaten-Lösung nicht mehr für realistisch. In seinem neuen Buch “Ein Staat für Palästina?” favorisiert er stattdessen einen binationalen Staat oder eine Konföderation zweier Staaten.

Jacques Delcroze: The Malian model falls apart / Effondrement du rêve démocratique au Mali (Monde diplomatique)

Christian Parenti: Ideology and Electricity: The Soviet Experience in Afghanistan (Nation) / Wer war Nadschibullah? (Monde diplomatique)

Mark Weisbrot: Assange case: Sweden’s shame in violating human rights (AlJazeera)

Syria | Myanmar | EU | Fukushima | Wikileaks | Palestine/Israel

Judy Bello: Hands Off Syria! (CounterPunch)
Conn Hallinan: Syria and the Phantom (CounterPunch)

What was that Turkish F-4 Phantom II up to when the Syrians shot it down? … According to the Financial Times, Turkey’s Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, told the newspaper “the jet was on a test and training mission focused on Turkey’s radar defense, rather than Syria.” Translation: the F-4 was “lighting up” a radar net. It is a common—if dangerous and illegal—tactic that allows one to probe an opponent’s radar system. Most combat radar is kept in a passive mode to prevent a potential enemy from mapping out weaknesses or blind spots that can be useful in the advent of an attack. … “Lighting up” radar was what the US Navy EP-3E Aries II was doing near China’s Hainan Island when it collided with a Chinese interceptor in 2001. … It is doubtful that Syria indentified exactly what the Turkish plane was, just that an unidentified warplane, flying low—generally the altitude one takes when trying to avoid radar—was in Syrian airspace. Paranoia? In 2007 Israeli warplanes—US-made F-16s, not Phantoms—slipped through Syria’s radar net and bombed a suspected nuclear reactor. … Turkey says the F-4 was 13 nautical miles from Syria when it was attacked—which would put it in international waters—but it crashed in Syrian waters. Damascus claims the plane came down less than a mile from the Syrian coast.

Heiko Khoo: The crisis of European capitalism (China.org.cn)

Last week’s crisis summit of European leaders resulted in defeat for the German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who capitulated to the demands of the French, Spanish and Italian leaders. Financial support for Italy and Spain can now take the form of funds going directly to their banking system. This means a relaxation of the imposition of swingeing austerity measures. Italy and Spain will not be humiliated like Greece, Ireland, Portugal and Cyprus have been in the recent past. … The Greek government will now demand that they be treated in the same way as the Spanish and Italians and that present austerity measures should come to a halt. They will warn Chancellor Merkel that the alternative will be a revolutionary upheaval in Greece. All this confirms that, had Syriza, the leftist electoral coalition, won the elections in Greece, their demand to remain in the Euro and simultaneously cancel austerity measures was by no means utopian.

Bertil Lintner: Burma 2012: Democracy and Dictatorship (JapanFocus)

Piers Williamson: Largest Demonstrations in Half a Century Protest the Restart of Japanese Nuclear Power Plants (JapanFocus)

On 29 June, Japan witnessed its largest public protest since the 1960s. This was the latest in a series of Friday night gatherings outside Prime Minister Noda Yoshihiko’s official residence. Well over one hundred thousand people came together to vent their anger at his 16 June decision to order a restart of Units 3 and 4 at the Oi nuclear plant.

Justin McCurry: Fukushima reactor meltdown was a manmade disaster, says official report (Guardian)

Last year’s accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was a manmade disaster caused by poor regulation and collusion between the government, the operator and the industry’s watchdog, a report has said.

National Diet of Japan: The official report of the Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission (NAIIC)

Moore, Glover, Stone, Maher, Greenwald, Wolf, Ellsberg Urge Correa to Grant Asylum to Assange (Just Foreign Policy)

Because this is a clear case of an attack on press freedom and on the public’s right to know important truths about U.S. foreign policy, and because the threat to his health and well-being is serious, we urge you to grant Mr. Assange political asylum.

UKPA: Poison found on Arafat’s clothes (Google News)

The body of former Palestinian president Yasser Arafat may be exhumed after the discovery of traces of a radioactive agent on clothing he reportedly wore in his final days reignited a cauldron of conspiracy theories.

Gregg Carlstrom: Arafat’s widow calls to exhume his body (AlJazeera)
Occupation sciences / מדעי הכיבוש (Haaretz)

An Israeli university on the West Bank would be a university for the occupation sciences; it must not happen.
אוניברסיטה ישראלית בגדה תהיה אוניברסיטה למדעי הכיבוש; אסור שהיא תקום.

Jimmy Johnson: A Primer on Settler Colonialism (CounterPunch)

Jeremy Kuzmarov: Police Training, “Nation-Building,” and Political Repression in Postcolonial South Korea (JapanFocus)

Philip J. Cunningham: Red and Yellow: Thailand’s Future in Check and Balance (JapanFocus)