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April 18 2011

02mydafsoup-01

March 05 2011

02mydafsoup-01
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The end of the Cold War, the reunification of Germany, liberalism and Perestroyka. The USSR's first and last president, Mikhail Gorbachev celebrates his 80th birthday today, and his legacy includes being hailed as the father of Russia's democracy. Mikhail Gorbachev was born in a small village in the south of the country, and became leader of the USSR in 1985. With his economic and political reforms, he paved the way for democracy in Russia. His best known reform is dubbed "Perestroyka", which aimed to revamp the country without destroying the basis of socialism. His initiatives also led to the abolishment of state censorship and the creation of free speech in the country. Gorbachev received the Nobel peace prize in 1990. A year later, however, he was removed from power in a coup which saw the collapse of the Soviet Union and Boris Yeltsin become president. But Mikhail Gorbachev still says his reforms were timely and necessary. "We realized from experience that it was dangerous to wait much longer, that we had to take a risk," he told RT in an interview. "But we couldn't postpone it, we needed changes." Gorbachev does not agree when people say that Perestroyka failed: "It didn't fail. It was disrupted, derailed, stopped. But still, Perestroyka achieved a lot. Inside Russia, we had democracy, free elections, freedom of consciousness, private property, freedom to travel abroad --everything. Also, glasnost. There was so much openness -- the entire country was affected. People realized they had finally got some freedom, an opportunity to act." The first USSR president points out that the end of the Cold War was among key goals of his administration: "In foreign affairs, we put an end to the Cold War. We normalized our relationship with the US, we reunited Germany -- we didn't send our tanks or troops there. All our units in Eastern Europe stayed where they were. It wasn't always easy." However, many things did not work as planned, Gorbachev confessed. "At the beginning, when we made our first mistakes, we didn't really explain to people what was going on and didn't get them involved in all those processes -- we were self-confident," he said. "But in public politics, I don't think we ever lost a major battle," Mikhail Gorbachev concluded.

Victoire à la Pyrrhus pour l'économie allemande

Croissance en hausse, chômage en baisse : l'industrie allemande redémarre. Mais à long terme, la mise en œuvre de ce modèle économique, qui repose sur les exportations, la stagnation des salaires et la déréglementation du travail, accentue dangereusement les déséquilibres européens. / Allemagne, (...) / Allemagne, Commerce international, Dette, Économie, Industrie, Politique, Crise économique - 2010/09
02mydafsoup-01
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afuzz:

Linda Vista Theatre, Mexico City

S.C. Lee, architect

Description: As built the circular front kiosk and tower perform the function of advertising the theatre as a destination and display the posters for shows to passersby.

Date: 1942

Reposted fromStellaVista StellaVista
02mydafsoup-01

[...]


LATE FRIDAY

NYT:  Military says it is now ongoing policy to make Bradley Manning be stripped naked every night and also to stand naked at attention in the morning, citing this as a precautionary measure and to last "indefinitely."   Will not explain why, saying this would violate Manning's privacy.

On Bill Maher's HBO show, Tracey Ullman defended  Julian Assange against charges of anti-Semitism raised by the Private Eye story .  Didn't know her daughter ran for Parliament last year and lost by 19 vote after two recounts?

Foreign Policy's review of the Week in WikiLeaks.

Rep. Kucinich asks re: Manning -- "Is this Quantico or Abu Ghraib?" 

My piece, a useful backgrounder:  "Bradley Manning and the Tomb of the Well-Known Soldier."

 I had this yesterday, but getting more attention today:  Former UK spy boss credits WikiLeaks with helping to spark revolts in Egypt and elsewhere, in off-the-record speech captured clandestinely. 

Editorial in The Guardian:: "Bradley Manning and the stench of US hypocrisy" 

Glenn Greenwald rips Pentagon spokesman Morrell for misleading comments on Manning, also knocks NBC reporters Todd and Guthrie for not challenging him at all yesterday.  Potemkin Village, revisited. And that's even before latest update (see below).

[...]

The WikiLeaks News & Views Blog -- Special Weekend Edition! | The Nation - Greg Mitchell - 2011-03-04
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walkingliberty:

I would consider relocating to Jackson if it meant I could work in this building.

decoarchitecture:

Greyhound Bus Station, Jackson, Mississippi
from Roadside Architecture: Greyhound Bus Stations

Side view of Jackson’s old bus station — now an architecture firm’s office. The architect saved the building!

From the site:

The Jackson station was built from 1937-1938. This is the only station that Arrasmith designed with a structural glass faced exterior. Originally, the interior had a coffee shop with a horseshoe-shaped counter. The men’s room had a shower, while the women’s room had a bath tub. It was condemned when architect Robert Parker Adams bought the building in 1988. He restored it as office space for his architectural firm. This station is also part of desegregation history. Freedom Riders were arrested here for using white restrooms and waiting rooms.

Reposted fromjohnstaedler johnstaedler

March 04 2011

So, das Gaby-Weber-Special ist vorbei. Mann. Das ...

So, das Gaby-Weber-Special ist vorbei. Mann. Das war ja noch besser als ich gehofft hatte. Ein Highlight jagte da das nächste. Ein Transkript der Sendung könnt ihr euch hier durchlesen. Ich werde mir das auch noch ein-zwei Mal in Ruhe durchlesen, das war echt viel Material für 45 Minuten. Auf jeden Fall ist das ein Muss für jeden, der sich für Geschichte interessiert, und auch Verschwörungstheoretiker kommen voll auf ihre Kosten.

Mir ist ja unklar, wieso der Eichmann vor Gericht den Globke nicht angeschwärzt hat. Hat der wirklich geglaubt, er kommt da mit einem blauen Auge davon, wenn er sich an seine Hälfte des Deals hält?

Also. Wer das verpasst hat: lest das Manuskript. Lohnt sich. Insbesondere wenn ihr Geschichts- oder Politiklehrer seid. Da kann man ein paar Wochen spannenden Unterricht mit füllen.

Reposted fromfefe fefe

Barton Kunstler, Ph.D.: Bradley Manning's Abuse: Army's Dishonor, Obama's Shame

The treatment of Bradley Manning by the United States Army has stained the honor of the American military. Manning is the soldier who leaked over two hundred thousand documents to WikiLeaks -- documents printed by The New York Times and a host of other publications whose patriotism and support of our country are unimpeachable. None of these documents gave out troop positions or any other military secrets. Private Manning's intent has been clearly documented: he feared for the future of his country and he felt desperate to correct our course.

In return, the most powerful army in the world is subjecting him to brutal treatment that qualifies as borderline torture. One can argue the extent, if any, of his guilt, or whether the editorial board of The New York Times should be brought up on criminal charges for aiding and abetting the delivery of the material Manning leaked. But torture? Sanctioned and conducted by the U.S. Army? Sleep deprivation 'a la North Korea's brainwashing techniques? Stripped and forced to stand naked in a cold cell? Kept in total isolation 23 hours a day except when he must respond to guards who check on him -- every 5 minutes? This is the "new army"? Who gave the go-ahead to impose this kind of treatment on a man who may not even have committed a crime? Who decided to raise the stakes in Manning's trial and bring capital charges against him. That's right. He is accused of aiding and abetting the enemy and for a U.S. soldier, the punishment can be death, although the army announced, in a show of benevolence, they will likely only seek life imprisonment.

Whoever it is driving this madness, they have a commanding officer. And somewhere up the line, the buck stops at the top -- at least that's the single most important, bottom-line rule of leadership. In the United States Army, the top is known as the Commander in Chief, also known as the President of the United States, Barack Obama. Which leads me to wonder:

Why is the Commander in Chief of the U.S. Armed Forces silent about the torture and judicial railroading of an American soldier by his own army, an army of which President Obama is the highest ranking officer? As Ruth Marcus recently noted in The Washington Post, Obama's is becoming the "Where's Waldo" presidency. Marcus points out that there's always a rational explanation for why Obama is strangely inconspicuous during a given event but, as has been often observed, the apparent upshot is a man unwilling to articulate a moral stance, to stand for anything. Obama seems to operate under the mistaken impression that leadership is akin to facilitating a corporate retreat.

Under George Bush our nation, with liberty and justice for all, regularly used torture as a state-sanctioned extension of political, military, and judicial policy. From Abu Ghraib to Guantanamo, from the kidnappings and renditions that culminated in U.S. sponsored torture-sessions throughout eastern Europe, northern Africa, and Asia, the United States became something unrecognizable, a Dr. Jekyll willingly abandoning itself to its inner, murderous Mr. Hyde.

Many of those tortured were innocent, caught up in petty feuds or an operation that swept up "the usual suspects". Some were guilty -- but of what? Who determined their guilt and did the punishment, prior to any determination of guilt, fit the crime? Tragically, the Bush administration gave up America's last pretensions to ethical distinction among nations.

Now Obama has passed his term's halfway point. Guantanamo is still open. The official language that sanctioned torture has been Obamafied -- that is, made better than it was under Bush but still not so strong as to repudiate or even definitively end torture. No member of the previous administration has been called to account for their use of torture, not only legally, but even in a public statement by the president. To paraphrase the Buffalo Springfield, "nobody's right if nobody is wrong."

So again I wonder:

If George Bush could use his authority as President and Commander in Chief to lead the United States on a descent into torture and gross violation of civil liberties, why can't President Obama use his authority to take a stand against torture and to restore liberty and law?

Does a conscientious stand against the violence of war deserve the treatment to which Private Manning has been subjected? Should anyone -- whether convicted or not, whatever their crime -- be tortured by the very institutions that exist to protect not only our individual rights, but the very ideas of liberty and law? And doesn't the army's use of torture and severe judicial proceedings debase the military authorities who vent their fury in the ugliest way possible on one of their own, and undermine the legitimacy of the military as the protective instrument of the nation?

And finally, if our Commander in Chief shrinks into the background and ignores the abuse of Bradley Manning, how can he expect to maintain his credibility as our leader, as the moral compass of our country?

Read more: George Bush, Law, Civil Liberties, Military Justice, Prisoner Abuse, President Barack Obama, Ethics, Bradley Manning, Wikileaks, Dishonor, U.S. Army, Torture, Abu Ghraib, Politics News

Reposted fromsigalonleaks sigalonleaks

March 03 2011

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Siva Vaidhyanathan on The Googlization of Everything- Berkman Center at the Harvard University
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