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Monday, October 31, 2011

UNESCO’s 194 “yes,” U.S. “no” to Palestine

Editing, brief comment by Carolyn Bennett 
Without sensibility or scintilla of nonviolent aid toward lasting peaceful coexistence, U.S. officials continue unleashing violence and threat on the world. 

Today the UNESCO General Conference admitted Palestine as Member State. Palestine’s entry brings the number of UNESCO’s Member States to 195.
The vote garnered cheers in the UNESCO hall but since U.S. officials know better than the majority of nations in the world, they announced that the United States will punish the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization for its vote to admit Palestine as a member.

For its membership to take effect, Palestine must sign and ratify UNESCO’s Constitution which is open for signature in the archives of the Government of the United Kingdom in London. The vote was carried by 107 votes in favor of admission and 14 votes against with 52 abstentions.

Admission to UNESCO for states that are not members of the United Nations requires a recommendation by the Organization’s Executive Board and a two thirds majority vote in favor by the General Conference of Member States present and voting (abstentions are not considered as votes).

The General Conference consists of the representatives of the States Members of the Organization. It meets every two years, and is attended by Member States and Associate Members, together with observers for non-Member States, intergovernmental organizations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Each Member State has one vote, irrespective of its size or the extent of its contribution to the budget.

The General Conference determines the policies and the main lines of work of the Organization. Its duty is to set the programs and the budget of UNESCO. It also elects the Members of the Executive Board and appoints, every four years, the Director-General.  

UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon urged member states not to cut UNESCO’s funding.

European Union Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton said in her call on states to maintain funding, “‘This is about peace, identity, culture, heritage and freedom of expression’; therefore, “‘The EU urges all parties to pause for reflection before taking precipitate actions.’”

Hey, hey, LBJ-bama, how many kids did you kill today?

October 31, 2011 news suggests TORTURE, VIOLENCE, WAR are at core of U.S. domestic, foreign policies


According to Afghan and Western officials familiar with the site, U.S. Special Operations forces handed over detainees to ‘Department 124,’ which was rebuilt in 2010 by American money and has been visited regularly by U.S. Central Intelligence Agency officials. The UN in August “publicly revealed ‘systematic torture’ of prisoners at Afghan facilities,” Press TV reports.

“U.S. authorities have used the facility to interrogate high-level Taliban and al-Qaeda terror suspects.”


The start of this week finds new revelations that U.S. officials (Washington) continued to transfer detainees to facilities run by Afghanistan's intelligence service though officials from the U.S. State Department, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the U.S. military had received multiple warnings about systematic torture at Afghan jails, Press TV attributes a Sunday Washington Post story.

On the ground today in southern Afghanistan, at least four people died and two more suffered wounds when a car bomb exploded in front of the offices of a U.S.-based non-governmental organization (NGO). The bomb exploded in front of the office of the NGO International Relief and Development (IRD) in Kandahar. NATO and Afghan forces reportedly exchanged fire with the attackers.

Saturday in Kabul, 13 U.S. troops and civilian employees of the US-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) died in what has been called “the deadliest single ground attack against the U.S.-led forces in 10 years of war in Afghanistan.”

Death by remote

The U.S. deploys “assassination drones” to launch airstrikes inside Pakistan’s tribal belt. These unauthorized attacks have caused relations between Islamabad and Washington to deteriorate. Pakistanis have insisted that these airstrikes by the remote-controlled, unmanned aircraft violate their country's sovereignty. Rights activists have condemned the drone strikes as extra-judicial assassinations against civilians U.S. whim deems anti-American, without rule of law.

Today, U.S. assassination drones reportedly claimed the lives of at least four more people in the Pakistan’s northwestern tribal region. Pakistani sources said the U.S. drone fired missiles at a residential area and a vehicle, in North Waziristan’s Norak area near Mir Ali Tehsil. Several people were also injured in the attack.

Witnesses told Press TV that after the attack the U.S. drones continued to hover over the area, increasing panic and fear among local people.

Sources and notes

“UNESCO’s General Conference today voted to admit Palestine as a Member State of the Organization” (© UNESCO/Dou Matar, c.f UNESCO Constitution, Article XV, on ‘Entry into force’), October 31, 2011, http://www.unesco.org/new/en/media-services/single-view/news/general_conference_admits_palestine_as_unesco_member_state/

“U.S. pulls UNESCO funding after Palestine admitted as member — The United States has announced it will withhold funding for UNESCO after the UN's cultural body admitted Palestine as a member. The US sees UNESCO’s decision as counterproductive to the Middle East peace process,” http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,,15500946,00.html


UNESCO has 193 Member States and 7 Associate Member States. It is governed by the General Conference and the Executive Board; the Secretariat, headed by the Director-General, implements the decisions of these two bodies.

The General Conference establishes the Organization's goals and priorities every two years and sets the budget. The Executive Board meets twice a year to follow program implementation.

UNESCO has its headquarters in Paris. It is housed in an outstanding, Modernist building inaugurated in 1958 and recently renovated. The Organization also has more than 50 field offices around the world.

The United States provides about 22 percent of UNESCO’s budget.


“‘US knew about torture in Afghan jails,’” http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207573.html
“Car bomb hits NGO office in Afghanistan,” http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207564.html
“Car bombing kills four in Afghanistan,” http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207567.html


“U.S. terror drones kill four in Pakistan,” http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207675.html



“Beginning in 1965, student demonstrations grew larger and more frequent and helped to stimulate resistance to the draft.

“From 1967 onward, antiwar sentiment gradually spread among other segments of the population, including liberal Democrats, intellectuals, and civil rights leaders, and by 1968 many prominent political figures, some of them former supporters of [Lyndon Baines Johnson, the 36th U.S.] president’s Vietnam policies, were publicly calling for an early negotiated settlement of the war.

“As his popularity sank to new lows in 1967, Johnson was confronted by demonstrations almost everywhere he went. It pained him to hear protesters, especially students—whom he thought would venerate him for his progressive social agenda—chanting, 'Hey, hey, LBJ, how many kids did you kill today?'

“To avoid the demonstrations, he eventually restricted his travels, becoming a virtual ‘prisoner’ in the White House.”

On March 31, 1968, U.S. President Lyndon Johnson announced he would not seek reelection to the presidency.


Bennett's books are available in New York State independent bookstores: Lift Bridge Bookshop: www.liftbridgebooks.com [Brockport, NY]; Sundance Books: http://www.sundancebooks.com/main.html [Geneseo, NY]; Mood Makers Books: www.moodmakersbooks.com [City of Rochester, NY]; Dog Ears Bookstore and Literary Arts Center: www.enlightenthedog.org/ [Buffalo, NY]; Burlingham Books – ‘Your Local Chapter’: http://burlinghambooks.com/ [Perry, NY 14530]; The Bookworm: http://www.eabookworm.com/ [East Aurora, NY] • See also: World Pulse: Global Issues through the eyes of Women: http://www.worldpulse.com/ http://www.worldpulse.com/pulsewire

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Feminism, Left — a Movement not a bachelor party

We learned to swear by
 My thoughts precisely — Radio host and producer, feminisms dot org editor Meghan Murphy: “Building a progressive feminist movement in neo-liberal times”
Edited by Carolyn Bennett

“An ‘everyone for self’ ethic has never been our vision of freedom and yet when it comes to women we have been manipulated into believing this means liberation,” Meghan Murphy writes.

Some of our hardest-fought rights and freedoms are under threat, unions are under attack, American privatization is leaning heavily on our doorstep, safe housing is treated as a privilege, not a right. We are told that concepts like universal daycare and decent social assistance programs are inconceivable. In the face of this regression, mainstream feminism seems to be hacking away at its own knees.

It is as though we are so afraid of losing everything that we fight for nothing.

“Desperation, coupled with the growing influence of neo-liberal discourse, has led us to look for empowerment where there is none — twisting deeply sexist imagery and industries into a frighteningly ironic version of female liberation.

“In the age of ‘Slutwalks,’ the neo-burlesque ‘movement,’ the mainstreaming of pornography, and of a ‘sex-positive’ feminism that acts as an assault on decades of feminist discourse —  how must we work to revitalize a feminist movement that does not kowtow to American neo-liberalism? An ideology that wants all of us to believe that freedom lies in positive thinking and that we can rise above institutionalized oppression by pretending it is not there.”


Describing the problem of individualism, Murphy quotes feminism author and researcher Denise Thompson.

‘If relations of domination and subordination are interpreted as nothing but properties of individuals, they cannot be seen as relations of ruling at all. They become simply a matter of preferences and choices engaged in by discrete individuals who have no responsibilities beyond their own immediate pleasures and satisfactions.(Radical Feminism Today, 2001)

“This critique of individualism,” Murphy continues, “demands that feminism be a progressive movement and makes problematic arguments, for example, for individual autonomy in sex work.”

We who should consider ourselves progressive have bought into “an ideology that erases systems of domination and subordination and tells us that our empowerment depends only on how we have framed our supposed oppression.

“It tells us that wealth is at our fingertips if only we would just work at it a little harder (and that freedom is based on our ability to make money in whatever way possible), focus our energy within, and forget about the plight of our neighbors.

“It tells us to work with what we have because, hey, we’ve been struggling long enough and still we suffer so why not just make the best of it?

“Feminism has not escaped this mindset — far from it. It appears that much of mainstream feminism has embraced this ideology with open arms.…


“Visible examples of the way in which parts of the feminist movement have adopted individualism as part of their discourse and action include the phenomenon of Slutwalks and efforts to decriminalize prostitution.

“…While there are women who are privileged enough to consider their choice to do sex work an empowered choice, the nature of the industry is one that exploits the most marginalized. The gap growing between rich and poor ensures that women will continue to be forced to ‘choose’ prostitution, as a means of survival.

“Keeping women safe from violence and abuse means providing women with real options: with safe and affordable housing, with social safety nets. It does not mean framing exploitation as a viable career path.… If The Left truly desires an equitable society, we must be working to end prostitution. Work toward freedom within the context of humanity rather than simply toward a lack of restrictions.”


“While many view Slutwalks as feminist, this ‘movement’ is disappointing from a progressive perspective. Missing an opportunity to present a radical challenge to the roots of oppression, they remain deeply focused on clothing and the ‘freedom’ to identify as ‘sluts,’ making this ‘movement’ one that places individual freedom above social change.

“In a culture that has successfully mainstreamed pornography, sexualized rape and dominance, presented women’s bodies consistently as things cut up into pieces for consumption — it is troubling that these issues have been visibly left off the table in a march against rape culture. Not only that; but the marches continue to play to a male gaze, featuring women on stripper poles and plenty of camera ops for the men watching from the sidelines.

“If our genuine goal, as The Left, is equality for all — feminism can only be, at its core, a progressive movement.

Neo-liberal ideology that values individual ‘freedom’ and ‘choice’ over emancipation will not liberate the poor and the marginalized.

Selling sex has never provided women with independence, safety, and long-lasting empowerment, but rather has further reinforced male power and privilege.
“If we do not care about one another, if we do not look toward building a world where women’s options for survival do not involve selling their bodies to men with power, then this cannot be called a progressive movement. It cannot be called a movement at all.

We must stop allowing ourselves to be manipulated into believing that individualism means liberation. This idea needs to be absorbed not only by the feminist movement but also by The Left as a whole. Murphy concludes, “This is a movement, progressives, not a bachelor party.”

Sources and notes

“A progressive dialogue: Building a progressive feminist movement in neo-liberal times” (Meghan Murphy), October 28, 2011, http://rabble.ca/news/2011/10/progressive-dialogue-building-progressive-feminist-movement-neo-liberal-times

Vancouver, Canada-native Meghan Murphy is host and producer of “The F Word” radio show (where she “marries feminism and sarcasm without alienating absolutely everyone”) and editor of www.feminisms.org. Murphy is a master’s student in Simon Fraser University’s Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies. She is also completing a graduate degree at the University of British Columbia’s School of Journalism. Her radio and blog work can be found at www.feminisms.org and at rabble.ca, http://rabble.ca/taxonomy/term/15553

Dr Denise Thompson [BA, Ph.D.] is on the Arts and Social Sciences Faculty, Social Policy Research Center (and has worked at SPRC and been research associate since 1996), The University of New South Wales, Sydney Australia
Dr. Thompson has been an independent scholar for many years reading, writing and publishing feminist theory. She has written many journal articles and has published three books, among them her doctoral thesis at UNSW Against the Dismantling of Feminism: A Study in the Politics of Meaning later published by Sage under the title Radical Feminism Today (2001). http://www.sprc.unsw.edu.au/staff/denise-thompson-504.html

9780868408231: The F Word: How We Learned to Swear by Feminism
Women propose feminist cinema http://artsearch.nga.gov.au/Detail.cfm?IRN=84649
Reclaiming feminism, http://blogs.abc.net.au/nsw/2011/08/reclaiming-feminism-.html


Bennett's books are available in New York State independent bookstores: Lift Bridge Bookshop: www.liftbridgebooks.com [Brockport, NY]; Sundance Books: http://www.sundancebooks.com/main.html [Geneseo, NY]; Mood Makers Books: www.moodmakersbooks.com [City of Rochester, NY]; Dog Ears Bookstore and Literary Arts Center: www.enlightenthedog.org/ [Buffalo, NY]; Burlingham Books – ‘Your Local Chapter’: http://burlinghambooks.com/ [Perry, NY 14530]; The Bookworm: http://www.eabookworm.com/ [East Aurora, NY] • See also: World Pulse: Global Issues through the eyes of Women: http://www.worldpulse.com/ http://www.worldpulse.com/pulsewire

Friday, October 28, 2011

Misguided policies eventually unravel, blow back, boomerang

Compiled, edited, re-reported by Carolyn Bennett
Early geopolitical map
Middle East, North Africa, Persian Gulf
Caucasus, Russia
Entrenched policies of aggression, consequences, commentary on blindness that callously refuses to see

Alastair Crooke this week at Conflicts Forum comments on meddling and mistakes, usury and being used in the Middle East’s U.S. (or the U.S.’s Middle East) theaters of war.

Mediterranean Sea east in southwestern Asia, its territory includes Golan Heights occupied by Israel since 1967  — SYRIA

From the outset of the Syrian upheaval in March, “the Saudi king has believed regime change in Syria would be highly beneficial to Saudi interests,” Crooke writes. A senior Saudi Arabia official told John Hannah, chief-of-staff to former United States vice president Richard Cheney, “‘The king knows that other than the collapse of the Islamic Republic itself — nothing would weaken Iran more than losing Syria.’

“This is today’s ‘great game,’” Crooke says, “the formula for playing it has changed” — U.S.-instigated ‘color’ revolutions in former Soviet republics have given way to a bloodier, more multi-layered process — but the underlying psychology is unchanged.
Early Syria 

“… Europeans and Americans and certain Gulf states may see the Syria game as the logical successor to the supposedly-successful Libya ‘game’ in remaking the Middle East but the very tools that are being used on their behalf are highly combustible and may yet return to haunt them — as was experienced in the wake of the 1980s ‘victory’ in Afghanistan.

“It will not be for the first time that Western interests sought to use others for their ends — only to find they have instead been used.…

Contemporary Syria
“…If the scope of the Syria ‘game’ — make it no game, for we cannot forget the dead including civilians, security forces, armed fighters — is on a different scale to the early ‘color’ revolutions, so too are greater its defects. The NTC [National Transitional Council of Libya] paradigm, already displaying its flaws in Libya, is even more starkly defective in Syria, with the opposition ‘council’ put together by Turkey, France and Qatar caught in a catch-22 situation. The Syrian security structures have remained rock solid through seven months — defections have been negligible —- and Assad’s popular support base is intact.

“Only external intervention could change that equation but for the opposition to call for it would be tantamount to political suicide, and they know it.

“Doha and Paris may continue to try to harass the world towards some intervention by maintaining attrition but the signs are that the internal opposition will opt to negotiate.

“…[T]he real danger in all this … is that the Saudis, ‘with their back to the wall ‘might once again fire up the old jihadist network and point it in the general direction of Shi’ite Iran.’

 “… [T]hat is exactly what is happening but the West does not seem to have noticed. … Saudi [Arabia] and its Gulf allies are ‘firing up’ the Salafists, not only to weaken Iran, but mainly in order to do what they see is necessary to survive — disrupt and emasculate the awakenings which threaten absolute monarchism.

“Salafists [Sunni Islamists] are being used for this end in Syria, in Libya, in Egypt … in Lebanon, Yemen, and Iraq. …

The former head of the Bin Laden Unit of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency has warned, Crooke recalls, that “the [U.S. Secretary of State] Hillary Clinton-devised response to the Arab awakening — implanting Western paradigms, by force if necessary, into the void of fallen regimes — will appear to be a ‘cultural war on Islam’ and seed a further round of radicalization. …”

Common sense is abroad in the world but smart idiots refuse to listen so the carnage continues.

WAR against Middle East

U.S.-allied YEMEN (with-old regime)

For months, hundreds of thousands of Yemenis have been demonstrating against a U.S.-allied governmental regime. Hundreds of protesters have died and, as with protests within the United States, many more have been injured in government crackdowns.

In Yemen, citizens protest the authoritarian rule (since 1978) of Ali Abdullah Saleh and call for an end to corruption and nepotism.

Anti-government protesters were reported today in Yemen’s capital, San’a, in Taizz, Ibb, Hudeida and several other cities. A 28-year-old woman died in the conflict as she was walking with her husband down a street that separates areas controlled by opposing factions. Her husband was injured. Gunfire exchanges and explosions were reported in another neighborhood in Sana’a. In the southern city of Taizz, five Yemenis were wounded after regime forces opened fire.

Anti-regime protesters chanted Saleh “must face justice” and vowed to continue demonstrations until he resigns.

U.S.-allied JORDAN (old regime)

Arabian oil - Britannica image
Though the Jordanian king has said he will give the country’s lawmakers the authority to appoint cabinet ministers and choose a prime minister, both offices he now appoints, he will retain authority to overrule any choice made by the parliament.

Today, thousands of Jordanians took to the streets demanding reforms. As in Bahrain, Yemen, Egypt and other countries, demonstrators are calling for the end of corruption and the prosecution of dishonest officials.

On October17, following months of street protests, demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Maaruf al-Bakhit, King Abdullah II fired al-Bakhit and replaced him with International Court of Justice judge Awn Khasawneh. Today’s demonstrations come four days after the king swore in a new cabinet, with political reform as its top priority.

U.S.-occupied IRAQ

United States troops in this country are reportedly preparing to leave after Washington and Baghdad failed to agree on a plan to keep a U.S. military training mission in Iraq after the December 31, 2011, deadline. 

But the fighting is not over. This week twin roadside bomb blasts hit Baghdad, Iraq’s capital. By Thursday, the death toll had risen to at least 36 and the count of injured was at 78.

U.S.-occupied/allied BAHRAIN (old regime)

Also for months in Bahrain as in Yemen, thousands have protested against the government and called for the United States-backed Al Khalifa royal family to relinquish power.

On March 14, troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates invaded Bahrain to assist the ruling regime in its brutal crackdown on peaceful protesters. Many Bahraini doctors and nurses, according to human rights activists, have been detained, tortured, or have disappeared because they were in possession of evidence regarding atrocities committed by Bahraini authorities, security forces, and riot police. Detained activists, some of whom have reported being tortured, have been given harsh sentences and long jail terms.

Today, thugs allied with the regime reportedly attacked mourners in a religious ceremony in the northern city of Muharraq, injuring a number of people. Later Saudi-backed Bahraini security forces arrived and fired tear gas and sound bombs into the crowds.


U.S.-against PAKISTAN

Pakistanis protest U.S. drones
Press TV image
The operation of aerial attacks begun in the George W. Bush government has escalated in the Barack Obama government.  Over the years, hundreds of people have died in these remote-controlled attacks.

The United Nations had condemned the U.S. use of combat drones against other countries as a blatant violation of international law, that extrajudicial killings undermine the rules designed to protect the right of life.

Civilians have been the major victims of U.S. assassination drone attacks, carried out regularly against Pakistan’s North and South Waziristan tribal regions.

Kamran Khan, a deputy from North Waziristan said after the tribal meeting, “We have run slides on the screens, showing images of innocent women and children to the participants of the Jirga, and proved that the U.S. is killing civilians under the pretext of hunting militants,”

“We are united against the U.S. atrocities and will fight against American terrorism,” said Adeel Khan, a local elder from South Waziristan.”

In Islamabad today, thousands of people and activists from Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf gathered in front of the parliament building to voice their outrage at the non-UN-sanctioned strikes. They said the attacks on the tribal region on Pakistan’s northwestern border with Afghanistan kill more civilians than Taliban or al-Qaeda terrorists.

The protesters called on Pakistani lawmakers to pass a resolution to put an end to the deadly assassination attacks by CIA agents in the country’s northwestern tribal belt.

Pakistani tribal elders met in the capital to unanimously vote for a resolution urging Islamabad to take immediate action to stop the killings of civilians by U.S. drones.

An assembly of tribal elders (Jirga) demanded the International Court of Law to take action against U.S. President Barack Obama’s administration for not halting CIA-run operations on the Pakistani soil.

Since 2007, incidents of violence across the country have left thousands of Pakistanis dead. Unknown assailants have blown up two state-run schools in northwestern Pakistan where government troops are said to be fighting militants.

Thursday in an area of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, militants detonated explosives that destroyed empty buildings of a government-run girls’ primary school.  Later the same day in Mandani area of northwestern town of Charsadda, a girls’ high school was destroyed. Again, no casualties were reported.

U.S. occupied/against AFGHANISTAN

Despite [or because of] the presence of nearly 150,000 U.S.-led forces in this war-torn Asian country, insecurity continues to rise. The monthly average number of security incidents recorded for the year through the end of August has risen nearly 40 percent, says a September 28 UN report on Afghanistan. The report says civilian casualties, already at record levels in the first six months of the year, rose 5 percent between June and August 2011 compared with the same three-month period in 2010.
Displacements in the first seven months of the year are estimated at 130,000, up nearly two-thirds from the same period a year earlier.

Today, a private vehicle struck a  roadside bomb in the Khogyani district. Four civilians died and three suffered wounds when the roadside bomb exploded in this eastern province of Nangarhar.

Among the dead were a woman and a two-year-old child. All of the injured children were under the age of 10. They were transferred to a hospital.

Roadside bombs and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) are the deadliest weapon at the disposal of Taliban militants against foreign troops, Afghan forces, and civilians.

WAR against AFRICA

U.S. -bombed SOMALIA

Somalia -Kenya - Ethiopia
Djibouti - Yemen

Britannica image
Strategically located in the Horn of Africa, Somalia remains one of the countries generating the highest number of refugees and the internally displaced in the world.

Yesterday in Mogadishu’s northern neighborhood of Gupta and in Hodan in southern Mogadishu, at least 33 civilians died when fights broke out between al-Shabab and African Union (AU) soldiers.

The exchange of fire and mortar shells continued into Friday leaving more than 76 people, mostly children, wounded.

U.S. drone strikes from Ethiopia into Somalia

The White House has increasingly turned to drones to carry out covert strikes in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia.

The Washington Post this week citing unnamed U.S. officials reported a civilian airfield in Ethiopia’s southern city of Arba Minch being part of a network of secret bases for unmanned aircraft. The report said the military has spent millions to improve the airfield in Ethiopia to accommodate a fleet of Reaper drones that carry Hellfire missiles and precision-guided bombs.

Using this secret airfield in southern Ethiopia, the United States carries out assassination drone attacks in the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.

Kenya and Somalia
Britannica image
Another East African state inflates carnage.

Reports are mounting that the United States and France are aiding [or leading] the Kenyan operation against Somalia.

Thursday on the outskirts of Kismayo, a strategically important port city on Somalia’s Indian Ocean coast 500 kilometers (310 miles) south of Mogadishu, Kenyan fighter jets reportedly hit positions of al-Shabab fighters. At least 41 people, among them nine civilians, died.

Kenyan aircraft - Press TV image
The president of Somalia, Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed, reportedly has said his transitional government opposes Kenya’s military incursion into Somalia.

NATO-destroyed LIBYA

Finally, there was commentary on a crime yet to be unveiled fully and called before an impartial court of law.    

“He lasted more than six months,” P. Ngigi Njoroge wrote, “a man leading a country of 6.5 million against an alliance of close to 500 million people. … — the portrait of a lion fighting against shameless bullies devoid of honor: Barack Obama, David Cameron, and Nicholas Sarkozy; these assassins now enter the pages of history for their brutal, ignominious acts.

“For self-respecting Africans, the lesson is this. We can expect more horrors from these people who wield enormous military power but we have a mighty weapon against them —

Building awareness about their intentions
Crying out loudly against their grotesque unfitness to claim global leadership as their right
Calling them by their real names: bullies, greedy predators, robbers of other people’s resources, deceivers, tellers of great lies

The rest of the world already is grouping together for mutual self-defense: Africa, India, Brazil and other South American countries, Russia and China. The days of malevolent, incompetent, misfeasor rulers are numbered.

Sources and notes

“The ‘great game’ in Syria” (Alastair Crooke, article posted on Asia Times Online, October 22, 2011), http://conflictsforum.org/2011/the-%e2%80%98great-game%e2%80%99-in-syria/

Alastair Crooke is founder and director of Conflicts Forum and a former adviser 
(1997–2003) to the former EU Foreign Policy Chief, Javier Solana.


“Anti-Saleh rallies continue in Yemen,” October 28, 2011,  http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207164.html

“Jordanians rally for promised reforms,” October 28, 2011, http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207140.html

“Death toll in Iraq twin blasts hits 36,” October 28, 2011,

“Pro-regime thugs attack Bahrainis,” October 28, 2011, http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207043.html


“Pakistanis protest US drone attacks,” October 28, 2011, http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207110.html


Pakistanis hold a massive demonstration in Islamabad to protest U.S. assassination drone attacks in Pakistan's northwest tribal region, October 28, 2011.

“Militants blow up schools in Pakistan,” October 28, 2011,  http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207101.html

“Roadside bomb kills 4 Afghan civilians,” October 28, 2011,


“33 civilians die in a Mogadishu battle,” October 28, 2011, http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207059.html

“‘U.S. flying drones from Ethiopia,’” October 28, 2011, http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207015.html

“Kenyan airstrikes kill 41 in Somalia,” October 28, 2011, http://www.presstv.ir/detail/207044.html

Also: “French warships hit Somalia coastline —French warships have shelled parts of coastline of the Horn of African state of Somalia with more than 20 heavy missiles,” October 27, 2011,

Kenya Caption Press TV
A Kenyan Air Force F-5 fighter jet (file photo)

“The Destruction of Libya and the Murder of Muammar Qaddafi” (P. Ngigi Njoroge October 24), posted October 27, 2011, at empirestrikesblack — ‘The great powers have no principles, only interests’: http://empirestrikesblack.com/2011/10/the-destruction-of-libya-and-the-murder-of-muammar-gaddafi/

Britannica notes on
An old and complex Middle Eastern/Asian world
A tight club


Saudi Arabia is a monarchy ruled by the Āl Saūd, a family whose status was established by its close ties with and support for the Wahhābī religious establishment.

Islamic law, the Sharīah, is the primary source of legislation, but the actual promulgation of legislation and implementation of policy is often mitigated by more mundane factors, such as political expediency, the inner politics of the ruling family, and the influence of intertribal politics, which remain strong in the modern kingdom.

The kingdom has never had a written constitution, although in 1992 the king issued a document known as the Basic Law of Government (Al-Niām al-Asāsī lī al-ukm), which provides guidelines for how the government is to be run and sets forth the rights and responsibilities of citizens.

The king combines legislative, executive, and judicial functions. As prime minister, he presides over the Council of Ministers (Majlis al-Wuzarā).
The Sharīah is the basis of justice. Judgment usually is according to the anbalī tradition of Islam; the law tends to be conservative and punishment severe, including amputation for crimes such as theft and execution for crimes that are deemed more severe (e.g., drug trafficking and practicing witchcraft).


Education is free at all levels and is given high priority by the government. The school system consists of elementary (grades 1–6), intermediate (7–9), and secondary (10–12) schools. A significant portion of the curriculum at all levels is devoted to religious subjects, and, at the secondary level, students are able to follow either a religious or a technical track. Girls are able to attend school (all courses are segregated by gender), but fewer girls attend than boys. This disproportion is reflected in the rate of literacy, which exceeds 85 percent among males and is about 70 percent among females.


The economy of Saudi Arabia is dominated by petroleum and its associated industries. In terms of oil reserves, Saudi Arabia ranks first internationally, with about one-fifth of the world’s known reserves. Oil deposits are located in the east, southward from Iraq and Kuwait into the Rub al-Khali and under the waters of the Persian Gulf.

Saudi King Abd Allah

Saudi King Abd Allah (also spelled Abdullah; in full: Abd Allāh ibn Abd al-Azīz, b. 1923): One of King Abd al-Azīz ibn Saūd’s 37 sons. For his support of Crown Prince Fayal (1964–75) during Fayal’s power struggle with King Saūd (1953–64), Abd Allāh was rewarded in 1962 with command of the Saudi National Guard. In 1975 King Khālid (1975–82), Fayal’s successor, appointed him deputy prime minister, and in 1982 King Fahd appointed him crown prince and first deputy prime minister. In 1995, Fahd suffered a debilitating stroke, and Abd Allāh briefly served as regent the following year. Although Fahd subsequently returned to power, Abd Allāh ran the daily affairs of the country and became king after Fahd died in 2005.

 King of Saudi Arabia from 2005. As crown prince (1982–2005), he had served as the country’s de facto ruler following the 1995 stroke of his half brother, King Fahd (reigned 1982–2005).

Abd Allāh was committed to preserving Arab interests but he also sought to maintain strong ties with the West, especially with the United States.

In 2001, relations between the two countries grew strained over Saudi claims that the U.S. government was not evenhanded in its approach to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The situation worsened later in the year, following the September 11 attacks against the United States and the subsequent revelation that most of the attackers were Saudi nationals.

Abd Allāh condemned the attacks and, in a move to improve relations, proposed a peace initiative that was adopted at the 2002 Arab summit meeting.

The plan called upon Israel to withdraw from the occupied territories (the Gaza Strip, West Bank, and Golan Heights) and promised in return a full Arab normalization of relations with the Jewish country. Tensions between the United States and Saudi Arabia resurfaced, however, after Abd Allāh refused to support a U.S.-led attack on Iraq or to allow the use of Saudi military facilities for such an act.

SYRIA and its President Bashar al-Assad

Syria’s president Bashar al-Assad (b. Sept. 11, 1965, Damascus, Syria)
In office since 2000, Bashar al-Assad succeeded his father, afiz al-Assad, who had ruled Syria since 1971.  In 1994 Bashar al-Assad’s older brother, Basil, who had been designated his father’s heir apparent, was killed in an automobile accident, and Bashar returned to Syria to take his brother’s place.  On June 18, 2000, after the death of his father on June 10, Assad was appointed secretary-general of the ruling Bath Party, and two days later the party congress nominated him as its candidate for the presidency. The national legislature approved the nomination, and on July 10, running unopposed, Assad was elected to a seven-year term.

“Though reform hopes for Assad’s first term had been met mainly with cosmetic changes, minor progress had been made with economic reforms. In 2007, Assad was reelected by a nearly unanimous majority to a second term as president through elections generally received by critics and opponents as a sham. At the start of Assad’s second term, Syria’s capacity for meaningful political change remained yet to be seen.”

Assad studied medicine at the University of Damascus and graduated as a general practitioner in 1988. He then trained to become an ophthalmologist at a Damascus military hospital and in 1992 moved to London to continue his studies. Before taking office, he trained at a military academy and gained the rank of colonel in the elite Presidential Guard.


The country is located on the east coast of the Mediterranean Sea in southwestern Asia. Its area includes territory in the Golan Heights that has been occupied by Israel since 1967. The present area does not coincide with ancient Syria, which was the strip of fertile land lying between the eastern Mediterranean coast and the desert of northern Arabia. The capital is Damascus (Dimashq), on the Baradā River, situated in an oasis at the foot of Mount Qāsiyūn.

After Syria gained its independence in 1946, political life in the country was highly unstable, owing in large measure to intense friction between the country's social, religious, and political groups. In 1970 Syria came under the authoritarian rule of Pres. afiz al-Assad, whose foremost goals included achieving national security and domestic stability and recovering the Syrian territory lost to Israel in 1967.

Assad committed his country to an enormous arms buildup, which put severe strains on the national budget, leaving little for development. After Assad’s death in 2000, his son Bashar al-Assad became president.

Islamic sects
Sunni and Shiite, Salafits

Salafists: Sunni Islamists

Sunnite; plural: Sunni

A member of one of the two major branches of Islām, the branch that consists of the majority of that religion’s adherents. Sunnite Muslims regard their sect as the mainstream and traditionalist branch of Islām, as distinguished from the minority sect, the Shīites.

Shiite; collective Shiah; plural Shiites

Early in the history of Islam, the Shīites were a political faction (Arabic shiat Alī, ‘party of Alī’) that supported the power of Alī ibn Abī ālib (the fourth caliph [khalīfah, successor of Muhammad]) and, later, of his descendants.
Starting as a political faction, this group gradually developed into a religious movement, Shīism, which not only influenced Sunni Islam but also produced a number of important sects to which the term Shīah is applied.

Syria, Palestine: Sites important in Syrian and Palestinian religion
Qatar and Doha


An independent emirate on the west coast of the Persian Gulf occupying a small desert peninsula that extends northward from the larger Arabian Peninsula, continuously but sparsely inhabited since prehistoric times.

The capital is the eastern coastal city of Doha (Al-Dawah), which was once a center for pearling and is home to most of the country’s inhabitants


Probably founded by Sudanese refugees from the sheikhdom of Abu Dhabi, Doha is the capital of Qatar, located on the east coast of the Qatar Peninsula in the Persian Gulf, the original quarter of the city, Al-Bida, is at the northwest.

More than two-fifths of Qatar’s population lives within the city’s limits. Situated on a shallow bay indented about three miles (5 km), Doha has long been a locally important port.


The global economic downturn of 2009 affected all the emirates composing the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E). The formerly booming emirate of Dubai, however, suffered the most and had to be helped by the oil-rich Abu Dhabi. Dubai's stock exchange, real-estate values, and construction industry declined markedly, and thousands of residents and workers left the emirate. In November world markets were shaken when Dubai asked to delay interest payments for six months, and Abu Dhabi was forced to extend bailout funds. Nonetheless, in September Dubai inaugurated an ultramodern subway line, the first of its kind in any Arab Gulf country.

Tensions between the U.A.E. and its neighbour Saudi Arabia rose over border issues and the selection of Riyadh by members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) as the headquarters of its proposed central bank. The U.A.E. considered the decision to be both politically motivated and dismissive of the competitive advantages of locating the bank in the emirates. Subsequently, in May the U.A.E. decided to join Oman in withdrawing from the planned GCC monetary union. This left only four countries (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, and Kuwait) committed to the project, which aimed at creating a single GCC currency.


In the rocky desert of the northern Arabian Peninsula, Jordan (capital city Amman) is an Arab country of Southwest Asia, a young state occupying an ancient land that bears traces of many civilizations. Jordan is separated from ancient Palestine by the Jordan River.

Amman is one of the region’s principal commercial and transportation centers and one of the Arab world’s major cultural capitals.

Slightly smaller in area than the country of Portugal, Jordan is bounded to the north by Syria, to the east by Iraq, to the southeast and south by Saudi Arabia, and to the west by Israel and the West Bank.

The West Bank area (so named because it lies just west of the Jordan River) was under Jordanian rule from 1948 to 1967.

Jordan’s constitution declares the country to be a constitutional, hereditary monarchy with a parliamentary form of government. Islam is the official religion, and Jordan is declared to be part of the Arab ummah (‘nation’).
The king remains the country’s ultimate authority and wields power over the executive, legislative, and judicial branches. The king appoints a prime minister who to head Jordan’s central government and chooses the cabinet.


ABDULLAH II (in full: Abd Allāh ibn usayn, b. January 30, 1962, Amman, Jordan)

Abdullah II has been king of Jordan since 1999 and a member of the Hashimite dynasty, considered by pious Muslims to be direct descendants of the Prophet Muhammad

The eldest son of King ussein, Abdullah served as the crown prince until age three, when unrest in the Middle East prompted ussein to name Abdullah’s adult uncle, Prince assan, heir to the throne.

In January 1999 King ussein, whose health was deteriorating, named Abdullah the new heir to the Hashimite crown. Hours after the death of his father on February 7, 1999, Abdullah became king of Jordan; he was officially crowned on June 9. In his new role, Abdullah continued to follow many of his father’s policies.

Following the September 11 attacks in 2001, Abdullah supported the United States’ efforts to combat terrorism, and, after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, U.S. forces were permitted to maintain bases in Jordan.

Abdullah was educated in Great Britain and the United States. In 1980 he graduated from the Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst, England. He later served in the British Armed Forces as well as in Jordan’s Armed Forces in the 41st and 90th armored brigades. In 1993, he was appointed deputy commander of the country’s elite Special Forces, a post he held until assuming the throne. 


Bennett's books are available in New York State independent bookstores: Lift Bridge Bookshop: www.liftbridgebooks.com [Brockport, NY]; Sundance Books: http://www.sundancebooks.com/main.html [Geneseo, NY]; Mood Makers Books: www.moodmakersbooks.com [City of Rochester, NY]; Dog Ears Bookstore and Literary Arts Center: www.enlightenthedog.org/ [Buffalo, NY]; Burlingham Books – ‘Your Local Chapter’: http://burlinghambooks.com/ [Perry, NY 14530]; The Bookworm: http://www.eabookworm.com/ [East Aurora, NY] • See also: World Pulse: Global Issues through the eyes of Women: http://www.worldpulse.com/ http://www.worldpulse.com/pulsewire

Monday, October 24, 2011

Ethos of hegemony

As endless as U.S. (Europe, Russian Federation, NATO, UN) wars are endless — unless and until the world’s people end it
By Carolyn Bennett
News clip edited from “Mixed Messages on Qaddafi — Nothing from NATO, political capitals, puppet TNC [current de-facto government of Libya, the Transitional National Council] officials, and major media scoundrels is credible. …”

As questions persist about U.S. foreign policy, its actions in Libya and what really happened and continues to happen in that country and throughout East Africa and the Middle East, Chicagoan Stephen Lendman writes, Mass graves cannot suppress a crime too great to conceal.

“Depleted uranium, thermobaric fuel-air bombs, white phosphorous (able to burn flesh to the bone), and other terror weapons were used to commit mass slaughter.

“Throughout the conflict, ‘rebels’ committed gruesome atrocities against suspected Qaddafi loyalists, including summary executions, lynching, beheadings, and desecration of corpses. Led by United States, United Kingdom, French and other NATO Special Forces, they took full advantage if a license to loot.”

Jamahiriya [Libya’s state system of the masses] loyalists will neither forgive nor forget. “Neither will the global millions raging against America’s imperial monster.”

“… Libyan loyalists vow to continue their liberating struggle and resist occupation, colonization and exploitation. Western capitals know it and they are not celebrating.

“America, Britain and France plan puppet rule. They will not tolerate free elections and democracy — as they have none in their own countries in which duopoly power [preponderant influence or control by two political powers] serving privileged not popular interests dominates.

“Democratic freedom is nonexistent in U.S. vocabulary. The Middle East project planed by the United States is “regional dominance across North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia to the borders of the Russian Federation.

“… Under Qaddafi, Libyans had Africa’s highest standard of living because oil wealth created economic growth and provided generous social benefits. Under his Decision No. 111, everyone got free healthcare, education, training, rehabilitation, housing assistance, disability and elder benefits, interest-free loans from Libya’s public bank, subsidies to study abroad, free electricity and water, generous stipends for newlyweds, and practically free gasoline.

“All of these are gone — replaced by impoverishment, destitution, depravation, homelessness, hunger, disease, fear, insecurity, and despair.

“Qaddafi’s Libya no longer exists. Jamahiriya loyalists want it back and they will not quit until they get it. Like Iraqis, Afghans, Palestinians, and other oppressed people, Libyans know they are in for a long liberation struggle. The courageous and committed will not quit until they are free.”

In the United States, the people will never enjoy liberty, even as it was narrowly and inadequately envisioned by leaders of the independence from Britain, until they rid the country — including its governors and governing domestic and international policies and practice — of and uproot and transform the entrenched ethos of violence and hegemony.

Sources and notes

“Mixed Messages on Qaddafi” (Stephen Lendman), Monday, October 24, 2011, http://sjlendman.blogspot.com/

Stephen Lendman also appeared today on Press TV. Lendman’s blog is sjlendman.blogspot.com . He also appears in with guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10 a.m. Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon, USA. All programs are archived for later listening

Reference MATHABA


“The administrative system in Libya is summed up in the word Jamahiriya, which literally means the state of the masses. The country is run by complete popular authority with no place for the traditional structures. Authority, wealth and the arms are all in the hands of the people.

“The Great Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya is situated in North Africa, stretching along the Mediterranean shoreline for nearly 2,000 kilometers. Its area is 1,775,500 square kilometers making it the fourth largest country in Africa. Egypt is on its eastern border; Sudan, Chad and Niger are to the south and Tunisia and Algeria lie to the west.

“The population of just over four million is concentrated in the cities, villages and farming areas along the coastal strip. Almost one million Libyans died during the Italian occupation from 1911 to 1944.”

MATHABA (Media Active To Help All Become Aware)

“MATHABA means a meeting place, platform, sanctuary.”

Founded in 1999 as the first stateless news organization in history, MATHABA describes itself at “the world’s leading independent news agency and a major online news network [with] the most advanced and effective news distribution.”

MATHABA’s mission: “Changing the world by broadcasting news and information that serves the public interest while also having over 50 different news categories, news feeds and distribution across multiple platforms for almost any type of news and information, www.mathaba.net/info/

Wikipedia note on thermobaric and NTC

A thermobaric weapon (including the type known as a ‘fuel-air bomb) is an explosive weapon that produces a blast wave of a significantly longer duration than those produced by condensed explosives. The longer duration increases human casualties and causes more damage to structures.

Thermobaric explosives [easily used inside confined environments such as tunnels, caves, and bunkers, unsuitable for use underwater, at high altitude or in adverse weather] rely on oxygen from the surrounding air, whereas most conventional explosives consist of a fuel-oxidizer premix (e.g., gunpowder contains 25 percent fuel and 75 percent oxidizer).

The National Transitional Council of Libya (sometimes known as the Transitional National Council, the Interim National Council, or the Libyan National Council) is the current de-facto government of Libya, established by anti-Qaddafi forces during the 2011 Libyan civil war, a war that pitted these forces against the regime of Colonel Muammar al-Qaddafi. The NTC issued a ‘Constitutional Declaration’ in August 2011 in which it set up a road map for the transition of the country to a constitutional democracy with an elected government.

Maps from Britannica

Bennett's books are available in New York State independent bookstores: Lift Bridge Bookshop: www.liftbridgebooks.com [Brockport, NY]; Sundance Books: http://www.sundancebooks.com/main.html [Geneseo, NY]; Mood Makers Books: www.moodmakersbooks.com [City of Rochester, NY]; Dog Ears Bookstore and Literary Arts Center: www.enlightenthedog.org/ [Buffalo, NY]; Burlingham Books – ‘Your Local Chapter’: http://burlinghambooks.com/ [Perry, NY 14530]; The Bookworm: http://www.eabookworm.com/ [East Aurora, NY] • See also: World Pulse: Global Issues through the eyes of Women: http://www.worldpulse.com/ http://www.worldpulse.com/pulsewire


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Racing and pinking cures nothing …

Cancer Prevalence Worldwide 1997
Britannica image
WHY — because cure was never the intention

Specialists, Pharma, and hucksters are raking in huge profits, promoting luxurious lifestyles on disease and maintenance of disease. Races and pink ribbons cure nothing.

Cures are achieved by independent laboratory work, devotedly unbiased, seriously funded science whose sole mission —in the public interest and for the public good — is to find cures and, allied with this, to  ensure unrestricted accessibility and promote disease prevention.

January 2011
Article in Guardian UK
By Carolyn Bennett

For years, I have been suspicious of the “pink,”  “race for,”ribboned,” often “celebritied” campaigns because they never seemed concerned with promoting achievement of the ends that women with cancer and women prone to breast cancer (or a disease, any disease) needed to have achieved.

My mother and her mother died of breast cancer and this issue has always been a tender place with me. So I bought the pink snake oil bamboozle briefly in the 80s I think it was. Then my eyes opened to the realization that this was nothing but a race for a sham, a pink elephant (a narcotic). The fix was in, permanently. Prevention or cure was never in the running.  

Now I find that others share my suspicions and they are calling out what they term the “pinkwashers.”

The Breast Cancer Action group writes on its website, “Pinkwasher (pink’-wah-sher, a noun) —

Company or organization that claims to care about breast cancer by promoting a pink ribbon product but, at the same time, produces, manufactures and or sells products that are linked to the disease.

“Pinkwashing has reached a new low this year with ‘Promise Me,’ a perfume commissioned by Susan G. Komen for the Cure,” Breast Cancer Action says. “‘Promise Me’ contains chemicals not listed in the ingredients that: (a) are regulated as toxic and hazardous, (b) have not been adequately evaluated for human safety, and (c) have demonstrated negative health effects.”

Breast Cancer Action calls that “pinkwashing

“From pink dog toys to pink... handguns,” CounterSpin led one of two features the week ending October 21 with this insight, “there is no escaping ‘Breast Cancer Awareness Month.’  Some of it is crass [and] raises a lot of money … at least a lot of awareness.” The lead noted these ideas, money and awareness, as critical questions or at least for raised eyebrows.

Money, yes; but for whom and for what; and if we concede that this “movement” raises “awareness,” is there any value to it other than raising more money — for the maintenance and manipulation industries: drug makers and marketers, medical specialists and X-ray technicians, PR and advertising industries?

On the Friday CounterSpin program was “Breast Cancer Action” Executive Director Karuna Jaggar who talked about this corrupt [my word] movement and why Breast Cancer Action launched the “Think Before You Pink” campaign.

Breast Cancer U.S. Statistics
Britannica image
“Think Before You Pink” is, according to its website, a project of the breast cancer movement watchdog group Breast Cancer Action. Launched in 2002, the “Think Before You Pink” campaign responds to “the growing concern about the number of pink ribbon products on the market and calls for more transparency and accountability by companies that take part in breast cancer fundraising and encourages consumers to ask critical questions about pink ribbon promotions.”

Breast Cancer statistics
From World Cancer Research Fund International

The countries with the top 20 highest incidence of breast cancer are given in the table below.

Belgium has the highest rate of breast cancer, followed by Denmark and France.

The number of cases of breast cancer diagnosed in 2008 is equally spread between more and less developed countries (around 50% for each).

Highest incidence of breast cancer in

  • Australia and New Zealand
  • Northern Europe and Northern America.

The lowest incidence of breast cancer in
  • South-Central Asia
  • Middle and Eastern Africa.

Age-Standardized Rate per 100,000 (World)
France (metropolitan)
The Netherlands
New Zealand
United Kingdom
French Polynesia
United States of America

Source: GLOBOCAN 2008 database (version 1.2) http://globocan.iarc.fr
WCRF International, Second Floor, 22 Bedford Square, London WC1B 3HH

These are critical questions Breast Cancer Action urges you to “Ask Before You Buy Pink.” The questions are more fully developed on the group’s website.

How much money from your purchase actually goes toward breast cancer?
Is the amount clearly stated on the package?
When the amount is stated on the package judge whether that amount enough?

What is the maximum amount [an entity] will donate from proceeds?

How are the funds being raised?
Does making the purchase ensure a contribution to the cause or do you, the shopper, have to jump through hoops to make sure the money gets where it’s supposed to go?

To what breast cancer organization does the money go and what types of programs does it support?
Does the product’s package tell you where the money goes and what will be done with it?
Will the money go to fund the same studies that have been ongoing for decades (which already get enormous financial support) or will it go to under-funded, innovative research into the causes of breast cancer?

What is the company doing to assure that its products are not actually contributive to the breast cancer epidemic?
Many companies that raise funds for breast cancer also make products that are linked to the disease. … Many cosmetics companies whose products contain chemicals linked to breast cancer also sell their items for the cause.

"Think before you spend your money on pink items."

Sources and notes

Both sexes [Cancer]
  • Lung cancer is the most common cancer worldwide contributing nearly 13% of the total number of new cases diagnosed in 2008.
  • Breast cancer (women only) is the second most common cancer with nearly 1.4 million new cases in 2008.
  • Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer with over 1.2 million new cases in 2008.
New cases diagnosed in 2008 (1,000s)
Per cent of all cancers (excl non-melanoma skin cancer
Cervix uteri
Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
Corpus uteri (endometrium)
Lip, oral cavity
Brain, nervous system
Melanoma of skin
Other pharynx
Multiple myeloma
Hodgkin lymphoma
Source: GLOBOCAN 2008 database (version 1.2) http://globocan.iarc.fr

“Todd Tucker on trade deals, Karuna Jaggar on Think Before You Pink” (CounterSpin, 10/21/11-10/27/11), http://www.fair.org/index.php?page=4421; http://thinkbeforeyoupink.org/?page_id=13

Breast Cancer Action, the watchdog of the breast cancer movement, does not accept funding from entities that profit from or contribute to cancer, including the pharmaceutical industry. Therefore, the group says on its website, “We are able to tell the truth about the epidemic.”
Breast Cancer Action: 55 New Montgomery St, Suite 323, San Francisco, CA 94105 http://thinkbeforeyoupink.org/?page_id=12

Download the PDF of critical questions. Find out the real story behind where the pink ribbon came from. Learn more about ‘cause marketing.’

Think Before You Pink™ is made possible by the generosity of the Lisa and Douglas Goldman Fund, Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund, Marisla Foundation, Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation and Rainbow Grocery Cooperative.

Think Before You Buy Pink

“Pinkwasher: (pink’-wah-sher) noun. A company or organization that claims to care about breast cancer by promoting a pink ribbon product but at the same time produces, manufactures and/or sells products that are linked to the disease.”

“Pinkwashing has reached a new low this year with ‘Promise Me,’ a perfume commissioned by Susan G. Komen for the Cure. ‘Promise Me’ contains chemicals not listed in the ingredients that: (a) are regulated as toxic and hazardous, (b) have not been adequately evaluated for human safety, and (c) have demonstrated negative health effects.

“At Breast Cancer Action, we call that pinkwashing, and we urge you to Raise a Stink! with us about it,” http://thinkbeforeyoupink.org/
Cancer Statistics (charts) Britannica

Britannica note: Breast cancer worldwide is the most common cancer among women. In North America and Western Europe, where life spans are longer, the incidence of breast cancer is highest.

Guardian Cancer rates


Bennett's books are available in New York State independent bookstores: Lift Bridge Bookshop: www.liftbridgebooks.com [Brockport, NY]; Sundance Books: http://www.sundancebooks.com/main.html [Geneseo, NY]; Mood Makers Books: www.moodmakersbooks.com [City of Rochester, NY]; Dog Ears Bookstore and Literary Arts Center: www.enlightenthedog.org/ [Buffalo, NY]; Burlingham Books – ‘Your Local Chapter’: http://burlinghambooks.com/ [Perry, NY 14530]; The Bookworm: http://www.eabookworm.com/ [East Aurora, NY] • See also: World Pulse: Global Issues through the eyes of Women: http://www.worldpulse.com/ http://www.worldpulse.com/pulsewire