segunda-feira, 16 de maio de 2011


The children of bin Laden accused the U.S. of violating the immemorial principles of justice, such as due process, by killing the head of household in Abottabad. Clearly, they demand a United Nations investigation into the facts and admit taking the case to the International Court of Justice. A group of British lawyers was already contacted.

They argue that they have always been against the acts of their father and, as they condemned them, today they condemned the killing of an unarmed man, who could have been trapped alive and taken prisoner, like many others, to a legal trial.

The idea is clear: if President Obama has violated the principles adopted by the international community and the conscience of men, such as others who have violated them and were subject to trial, he should be treated the same. Admittedly this will not happen. Since the world exists, they are only really punished eventually by the the weakest courts.

The great French Catholic intellectual and dissident François de Menthon, the French prosecutor at Nuremberg, spoke about two outstanding phrases at that time. In one, he defines what a crime against humanity is, "crime contre le statut d'être humain, motivé par une ideologie qui est contre l'espirit, visant a rejeter l'humanité dans la barbarie" (crime against human laws, motivated by an ideology that is a crime against the spirit, returning humanity to barbarism. The definition served at that time, but we always have difficulty in defining which ideology is against the spirit and aims to bring humanity back into barbarism.

Since each of us has an ideology, it is normal for us to defend our own and we reject those that oppose it. The other Menthon phrase is more effective as an aid to reasoning. When everyone was smiling at the stupidity and nonsense of Nazi slogans and ideas, the Frenchman said, with lucid skepticism: "We consider such slogans ridiculous and stupid, but if they had won the war, we'd be repeating them, and in some cases, with enthusiasm."

It is with enthusiasm that many people repeat the many arguments of Washington, which boil down to one: by having sufficient force to impose democracy made in United States and its peculiar exegesis of Human Rights, Obama has done right by invading a foreign country, going there to kill some unarmed people, hijack a corpse who must be buried by relatives, and threaten, covertly, sovereign countries and other enemies, of acting likewise, if deemed necessary. It is with this type of enthusiasm that the vehicles of communication in the world and some statesmen and academia have responded, in most cases.

Those that prophesy new barbarism in man haven't been in short supply since the Enlightenment. This barbarism would be based on the technological application of the discoveries of science and the myth of efficiency and progress. This sad and prophetic vision, which was admirable in its formulation in Vico, almost took place under Nazism, during the war with its organization and management of near perfection, the examples of which were the concentration camps. And while we are speaking of Nuremberg, the substitute for Francois de Menthon at the end of the trial, Champetier de Ribes, was accurate in his final pronouncement:

"The historian of the future, as the columnist of today, will know that the work of twenty centuries of a civilization that believed itself eternal escaped collapsing by returning in a new form of ancient barbarism, more savage, because it is more scientific."

We still do not escape from the barbarism that threatens us, the "unique thought" and the arrogance of a nation that considers itself the lady of Western civilization, with the complicity of its large and small vassals. Faced with that, only the reaction of men and women of the world (who still remain human for us) will be able to save the best of our historical experience.

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sexta-feira, 6 de maio de 2011


The north-americans always create, encourage and finance opposition movements in all countries where it is in their interest to destabilise governments and political systems.

So, not surprisingly, their agents and allies in Muslim countries have encouraged the movement that started the so seemingly accidental, Tunisia. Young people from Islamic countries are dissatisfied with life. They lack opportunities for professional and personal fulfillment. Their freedom is limited, and their dreams crumble in front of a closed society.

In the last 21 days, the New York Times published an article by a 24 year old successful and reputable developer of the Council of Foreign Relations in New York. Matthew C. Klein examined the situation of young Americans, showing that the unemployment situation is similar to that of young people in poor countries, and that their dreams are also limited.

He could have also discussed the disillusionment of the unpaid portion of alienated youth in his country with the government, with Congressional corruption, the indecent behavior of large corporations that have their head on Wall Street and with the bellicosity of their country. The fact that there is an illusion of freedom of the press and periodic elections does not reduce the absolutism of the essential American system. People vote, every four years, the justice system works, although the Supreme Court does not always judge with impartiality. But still, freedom, here as elsewhere, is a market good, a commodity. You have to be able to buy it.

Human rights, proclaimed in lofty statements are also violated in the United States and countries that sing in their chorus. Just remember what goes on at Guantanamo, what was documented at Abu Ghraib, and the conditions which are seen in a naval prison, for the U.S. soldier, Bradley Manning.

The claim that the intervention in Libya is made on behalf of human rights and the protection of civilians is immoral. It is considered unwise even to British MPs, like Rory Stewart, in an article published on the 18th, in the London Review of Books. Stewart is not a leftist.

Deputy for a traditional conservative stronghold in the northwest of England, the parliamentarian reveals knowledge of the subject. He was with British troops in Iraq, and after that, crossed Afghanistan on foot as part of a larger trip from Turkey to Nepal, for 6,000 miles and lasting two years. Although conservative, Stewart considers his country's participation in anti-Islamic crusades an error. He justifies, in part, the intervention in Yugoslavia in the name of protection of a civilian population they pretended was threatened by genocide there - but does not agree with the rest. We reproduce some text of his article, published under the title "Here we go again":

"It seemed doubly unlikely that Britain would ever intervene militarily in country like Libya. Although poor in oil, Afghanistan and Central Asia were seen by many Muslims as objects occupied by infidel crusaders, led by Israel, and in order to deploy military bases or get cheap oil. Any move against Libya - an Arab Muslim country, obsessed in a relentless struggle against colonialism and sweating oil - gave the impression that it would be viewed as an extremely hostile and sinister move, first not only by their own Arab neighbors, but also the developed world and even by Libyans themselves.

Libya does not meet even the criteria of international law as a target for military intervention. Gaddafi is the sovereign power, not the rebels, nor did he practice genocide or ethnic cleansing...

As deputy to the House of Commons, it occurred to me that maybe it's time to remind people that despite the misery of Afghanistan, Britain can still have a constructive role in the world."

At the end of his article, the parliamentarian is pessimistic and gets to the bottom in the exhibition of the pretenses of the colonialists:

"Nothing makes me more aware that the greatest danger is not despair but these unstoppable decisions, almost hyperactive, the feigned sense of moral obligation, fear of rogue states, failed states, of losing our "credibility." This, indeed, makes me fear that we are at the beginning of another decade of military superintervention."

Rory Stewart (born in Hong Kong, to English parents, educated in England) thus confirms the objective of another colonialist movement, again "manu militari" (with a military hand) of the old rulers. Intimidated by the lack of cheap oil, they cling to the past, in search of their security and pride, as owners of the world.

The elite oligarchs of the lecherous imperialist capitalist world no longer make any pretenses of serving the people they rule, they have long distanced themselves from the will of the people. Meanwhile, this collection of thugs, murderers and false accusers meets in London to decide "the future of Libya." Who asked them?

Cameron, Sarkozy and Obama should all go, they have lost all legitimacy. I am sure some polar bears in the Arctic might welcome their presence. It is doubtful they would be welcome anywhere else. But that would hardly be necessary if they were first forced to go before a war crimes tribunal.

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The pretext for military intervention in Libya is the defense of "human rights." The argument for the crusades was the defense of the "holy places." The alleged cause for foreign intervention in the Amazon is to protect the environment and indigenous rights.

The secular principle of non-intervention in internal affairs gives rise to the spirit in some countries of a special mission, feeling mighty and powerful, they are prepared, either alone or through coalitions, to invade the territory of others.

The sovereignty of states can be likened to the inviolability of the home. The reason that man uses and builds a house is to protect himself and his family from the weather and from predators. It is this same principle that drives the creation of states.

Jean Bodin, French thinker of the 17th century, sums up the idea, to identify the higher states as "societates quae non recognoscunt" (Latin), in short, the state exerts over its subjects and territory the summa potestas, the sum, finality or totality of power.

If eventually violated by a subject or by a prince, it does not pawn the state in its pure situation. In the case where there is submission to another state, it can only be understood as a temporary concession of sovereignty, a mutual convenience, or religious or ideological allegiance, as in the case of theology-based states, including Muslims and pontifical. Or, in the case of military defeat.

The logic of common sense indicates that only defensive wars are just. When German submarines sank ships off the coast of Sergipe in Brazil, in national waters, we had to declare war on the Axis. The same occurred in the Paraguayan War: in retaliation to aggression.

A third country can come to the rescue of the victim, hence the known military pacts, the Entente and the large and small coalitions. The doctrine of intervention to impose internal order on the other can only be defined with the raw phrase of Peron: "la fuerza es el derecho de las bestias" (force is the right of beasts).

Like any other adjective, human rights depends on the choice of each. The right to associate freely and to individual freedom, the vision of Stuart Mill, who says that "liberty is to be able to make a choice." My right, I choose, and it will be legitimate, if it does not violate those of others.

Some days ago in a seminar in the Amazon, Americans like Bill Clinton and the swine James Cameron were received by aboriginal leaders to appeal for open foreign intervention against the construction of the Belo Monte factory. The mere presence of Mr. Clinton and Mr. Schwarzenegger in Manaus to discuss the problems of the Amazon is already an intolerable intervention.

Let the reader suppose that, in response, the Americans decide to bomb the hydroelectric plants in Brazil. Or that a few rich countries "moved" with the misery of our children, resolve to send troops to save them.

Thinking about it now may seem absurd, as absurd as to imagine that after 1945, there were still messianic military expeditions, such as the "Liberator" Hitler against Eastern Europe.

In 1936, Franco, with foreign troops (Moroccan), and the support of the Nazis, stood up against the legitimate government of the Republic. France and England shied away from intervening on behalf of Spanish sovereignty. As seen, doctrines change according to convenience. In Spain there is no oil.

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President Lula and Prime Minister Putin made basically the same speech yesterday [9 / 12] in defense of Julian Assange, although with different arguments. Lula made this point: Assange is just using the old right of freedom of the press, of information. It is not proper to accuse him of causing damage to one of the greatest powers in history, since the authenticity of the released documents is not disputed. Everyone knows that the allegations of misconduct in consensual relationships with two women of Cuban origin in Sweden are just a pretext to detain him, so that other charges can be mounted, and he can be extradited to the United States.

What is required is to examine the political consequences from the disclosure of the secret Yankee diplomatic documents, some laughable, others very serious. Yesterday [9 / 12] in Brussels, the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov commented on the revelations of WikiLeaks on the attitudes of NATO toward his country. While the organization, under the domination of Washington, called on Russia to join the alliance, it was updating their plans for military action against the Kremlin, in the presumed defense of Poland and the Baltic countries. Lavrov asked NATO what is your real position, since what is publicly assumed is the reverse of what they say in their secret documents. Moscow went further, proposing the name of Assange as a candidate the next Nobel Peace Prize.

An examination of history shows that whenever the holders of the written word changed, there was a corresponding social and political revolution. Without Guttenberg, there would not have been the Renaissance, without the proliferation of printing presses in the France of the Louis'es, it would be unthinkable to have the Enlightenment and its immediate political fallout, the French Revolution.

The evidence of the immense power of the printed word led the Constituent Assembly to approve Article XI of the Declaration on the Rights of Man and Citizen, at the beginning of the Revolution, in August 1789. The device of the cornerstone of the Constitution stipulates that every citizen has the right to speak, write and print with full freedom. The laws punish those who, by lying, achieve someone else's the honor. Freedom of the press belongs to the citizens of the society. National societies, in our age of electronic communications, make up the free, planetary society of men.

It is surprising that before this irrefutable reality, trade journalists want to claim press freedom (a word that embraces, from the political point of view, all the media) as a corporate monopoly. The Internet confirms the intention of French legislators for 221 years: freedom of expression is for all, and we are all journalists. It is enough to just have an email address. The heavy and relatively expensive printing machines of the past are now relatively cheap, easier and lighter notebooks, and with a universal reach.

There is always the quotable observation of Isidore of Seville, who wisely remarked in the seventh century, that "Rome was not that strong." Bradley Manning and Julian Assange are showing that Washington - whose fears are transparent in their diplomatic papers - is not so very mighty. It is interesting to note that the name of Saint Isidore of Seville is being suggested by Catholic bloggers as the patron saint of the Internet.

Journalists should get used to the idea of resigning or sharing their alleged privileges. All who can write and manipulate a computer are citizens, and being a citizen is much more than being a journalist. It is these citizens who, on the same line of Putin and Lula, are mobilized in a virtual agora, to defend Assange, the same way that they are mobilized in defense of a woman sentenced to death for adultery. The world has changed, but not everyone has noticed this change.

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There is every reason for pessimism about the problem of Palestine. Israel, under the hardliner Netanyahu, is willing to defy Washington. The nullified Joe Biden, vice president of the United States, was not repaired properly by the government of Israel. The position of Israel seems to harden, despite the harsh admonitions on the part of Biden and Hillary Clinton. Obama’s patience appears to be coming to an end. But Israel plays with a gross psychological factor, to hint, in a roundabout way, that the current president of the United States of America is a Muslim and, ultimately, an enemy of the Jews.

The American journalist Roger Cohen, commenting on the conflict between the current government of the United States and the radicals of Israel, quoted a bold sentence initiated by Netanyahu: “Israel and the United States have mutual interests, but we act according to the vital interests of the State of Israel. ” According to Cohen, “The United States also has vital interests,” which include the existence of two states, Israel and Palestine, side by side, but “this solution is eroding every day, with the continual building of Jewish settlements on territory that should belong to the Palestinians.”

By the way, Cohen repeats a conversation he had with Ronan Nachman, mayor of one of the largest of such settlements, the Ariel. Nachman said, with candor and determination, that there will never be a Palestinian state and the territory for him will have to be divided between Israel and Jordan. In a cartoon, published by the daily Maaravi, also cited by Cohen, Netanyahu shows Obama in a cooking pot, in a typical African cannibal scene of preparing dinner. It is very significant to show a “white” cooking a black man. This can suggest many things.

It is unlikely that things will go so far as to convince the right wing of Israel, especially those that control their armed forces that they need to change their attitude and accept sincere peace talks with the Palestinians. Their strategy seems to be to erode the willingness of the Palestinian resistance, cajole world public opinion and to expel these people from their historical territory.

President Lula benefited from a time shortage, stopped from visiting the grave of Theodore Herzl, the Hungarian-Jewish journalist who, living in Austria, in 1897, founded the World Zionist Movement. According to some sources, Herzl, before fighting for the creation of a Jewish state, was immersed in militant Germanism, the cause of unification of all German states – which would later be one of the highest goals of Hitler.

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Unsurprisingly: Human Rights Watch, an international organization that monitors human rights violations in the world, reported in Bogota, new crimes of the paramilitaries in Colombia. Besides the killings, there is the forced displacement of entire populations under the threat of armed criminal gangs. These commands rely on the protection of sectors of the armed forces, police, prosecutors and some dignitaries of the government of Uribe.

The country has been the hardest hit by violence in Latin America, although it is endowed with an intellect that stands out among the neighbors. It is not only the home of the novelist, Gabriel García Márquez, an exceptional poet and playwright. As other crossbred countries of the mountain range, Colombia is dominated by a minority of big businessmen, mostly white, many of foreign surnames, that control banks, industry and the media - and, similarly, drug trafficking and state institutions.

These elites belong to President Uribe. Against them were, during the 20th century, several armed movements. The State was not able to overcome them with their classical forces of repression. Some business owners then decided to finance the paramilitaries, who officially outside the State started to exterminate urban and rural leftists, under the pretext of complicity with FARC. These groups never faced the guerrillas head on. It was nasty terrorism: the victims are mostly young people abducted from the outskirts of cities and residents in the fields. They are just "numbers" to justify the money received.

Groups of thugs formed as well, groups of common criminals or former prisoners, fugitives from prison, ex-military and ex-cops, drug dealers and unemployed, all armed, equipped and paid according to the number of victims killed.

There is strong evidence that such groups have received help and training from the CIA, although the Americans deny it. What they do not deny is the presence of consultants and advisers that "help" the "regular" forces of Colombia to combat the guerrillas, under the pretext of suppressing the drug trade.

The Colombian government has become a scary fantasy. Prominent members of the Uribe government are accused of complicity with the paramilitaries. There was Uribe himself, when governor of Antioquia, whose capital is Medellín. The group sponsored Convivir, a front organization for exterminators, funded by the big Chiquita banana company - according to U.S. documents. The same documents indicated that at the beginning of the Uribe government, the then army chief Mario Montoya, was compliciting with a death squad that had eliminated at least 14 people in Medellin.

Between 2003 and 2006, the Colombian government, under pressure of world opinion, "provided the demobilization of 30 thousand members of paramilitary organizations, but there is evidence that this was a scam." As a result - I quote the report by HRW - many groups have acted fraudulently and recruited civilians to pass as part of the paramilitary demobilization, and thus preserved its active staff. The real chiefs and deputies of the groups are concealed, and kill again months later. Since 2007, these groups turned to the light of day - it is estimated there are between 4 thousand and 10 thousand of its troops now.

The report has complained that a chief promoter of Medellín, Guilherme Valencia Cossio - the brother Minister of the Interior and Justice of Uribe - was a collaborator with the paramilitary groups. The fact is that there is clear condescension and involvement of senior members government of Álvaro Uribe - there are barely eight years in power, with the death squads.

President Barack Obama, as candidate, announced that if elected, he would cut aid to Colombia. Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, negotiated the installation of U.S. bases in the country, and has secured the decisive support from Washington to Uribe and his group.

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