Posts Tagged ‘MST’

Haiti: Lebendiger Internationalismus

Montag, Juni 27th, 2011

“Learning and Constructing with Haitians

Internationalism between Peoples

By Beverly Bell

Bev Bell, a long time Grassroots International ally, recently published the article below, which describes a Learning Exchange program between Brazil and Haiti, supported by Grassroots International. Bev has worked with Haitian social movements, including many of Grassroots International’s partners, for decades.  This piece describes the dynamic cross-border collaboration between partners in Haiti and Brazil. Jose Luis Patrola of the Landless Workers Movement puts it well: “We’re not here to teach, we’re here to learn.” He also acknowledged the financial support provided by Grassroots that helped make the Haiti-Brazil learning exchange happen. Perhaps it’s largely true, as noted by Patrola, that social movements have forgotten the concept of internationalism. But our Haitian and Brazilian partnerships are working hand-in-hand to change that.

 

“Internationalism between Peoples”: Learning and Constructing with Haitians
By Bev Bell

Jose Luis Patrola is a history professor, farmer, and member of the Brazilian land reform group, the Rural Landless Workers’ Movement, or MST. He has lived in Haiti for three years. There, he coordinates the MST’s program, an exchange of agricultural and technical cooperation between Haitians and Brazilians. In a departure from many international programs of “teaching” and “aiding” Haitians, Patrola speaks here about mutual learning and respect.

We are here in Haiti in an educational solidarity exchange program. We’re not here to teach. We are here to learn.

In our work, there’s great respect for Haitian farmers and movements. That’s something that has been greatly lacking: respect. Not only from foreigners, but from Haitian elites who don’t acknowledge their own peoples.

The MST and the Vía Campesina [a coalition of farmers and landless people’s organizations from around the world] in Brazil have had contact with small farmers in Haiti for many years now. Since 2004, we’d been thinking about a solidarity exchange program between campesino [small farmer] movements in Brazil and Haiti. We were finally able to make this possible starting in January 2009, when the MST and other small farmers’ organizations from Brazil sent a brigade of four people to identify what the solidarity exchange would look like. The exchange now works to achieve horizontal solidarity between these farmers.

With the earthquake in January [2010], things changed a little, and movements in Haiti suggested to us the possibility of strengthening the brigade with more Brazilians. We organized a brigadeof 31 people, who sleep and eat in the Haitian farmers’ homes.

There are different farmer movements from Brazil that are participating. The MST is the biggest group, but there’s also the Movement of Small-scale Agriculturalists, the Movement of Women Campesinas, the Movement of Dam-Affected People, and the Pastoral Commission of the Earth that’s part of the Catholic Church, and a representative of the Movement of Unemployed Workers.

The brigade consists of people with different skills. We have farmers. We have technical agronomists that are also children of farmers. We have veterinarians, professors, construction specialists, and two medics. We’re doing a little bit of everything; the diversity is very important. A doctor, for example, helped install a cistern for water catchment, and professors are also working the land.

The program works at two levels: an organizational level to strengthen peasant organization and autonomy, and a technical level with programs of cooperation, including agricultural production and training schools.

We can say that this exchange is organized in four fundamental components. First is the exchange, a big opportunity for cultural and intellectual training. We have 30 Brazilians here, which is like a training school in itself, because the starting point of their time here is learning.

And we have sent [Haitians] from here to over there as a form of horizontal solidarity. The people spent one month in a school in Brazil where they had history, geography, and Portuguese classes. And after 30 days, the Haitians went to different parts of Brazil to get to know about the different things we’re doing. We want Haitians to have the opportunity to understand what’s happening in Brazil, so when they come back here they can contribute to their organizations.

The second phase of the work is producing seeds, which is fundamental in food sovereignty. We started strengthening the national production of seeds so people can save, maintain, and produce their own seeds. We’re establishing six centers of seed production of legumes and other seeds like corn. We’d like to grow stronger in the area of legume production based on our experiences in Brazil, because in Haiti all the seeds for legumes come from other places; they aren’t produced here. We don’t just want to build a program to produce seeds, we want it to be controlled by the farmers.

Third, we started a program of reforestation. It’s true that Haiti has serious issues with deforestation that’s not easy to work on. A lot of trees are cut to make charcoal to assure [the farmers] a steady income. We’ve worked on reforestation by planting avocados and mangoes, other things, so the farmers can [have other sources of income].

The fourth area is the construction of intermediate-level technical schools to train young farmers in agricultural technologies. Like in other sectors of society, the investigative and technical side of agriculture has been abandoned. Five or six technical schools have been closed. We have plans to open one. We have many examples in Brazil to work with; it’s a dream of peasant movements.

So these programs – the exchanges, the seeds, reforestation, and technical schools – have a fundamental objective: to help them strengthen their autonomy and their organizational capacity, the base of social movements. That’s the principal philosophy of the cooperation.

A lot of money has entered Haiti, but far away from the real necessities. People here are dying of cholera, for example. What’s the solution? Potable water to live. We’re installing 1,200 cisterns for water catchment.

All the work we’ve done has been voluntary. All the resources we’ve gotten are from a foundation in Boston called Grassroots International and two Brazilians who have supported the brigade. There are movements back in Brazil that are assuming responsibility for supporting the families, providing monthly contributions, because some left children [back home]. There are also the hosts [for the Haitians] there in Brazil.

Social movements all over the world have forgotten the concept of internationalism. Small farmers’ movements through Vía Campesina have revitalized this, and the example of Haiti has proven it. The exchange proves that a solidarity exchange is possible between peoples, not just between governments. Not that that isn’t important, but social organizations can also articulate their exchange programs of alliances.

What we are doing doesn’t consist of donating things, it consists of identifying and constructing alongside Haitians. The Haitian people have to be respected and we have to get to know them, we have to speak their language. It’s very symbolic, what we are doing.

Thanks to Sylvia Gonzalez for translating, and to Deepa Panchang for her help editing.
Photo: Brazilian and Haitian farmers are together constructing 1,200 cisterns in rural Haiti. Photo by Federico Matias.

Beverly Bell has worked with Haitian social movements for over 30 years. She is also author of the book Walking on Fire: Haitian Women’s Stories of Survival and Resistance. She coordinates Other Worlds, www.otherworldsarepossible.org, which promotes social and economic alternatives. She is also associate fellow of the Institute for Policy Studies. You can access all of her past articles regarding post-earthquake Haiti at www.otherworldsarepossible.org/haiti.

 

(Quelle: Grassroots International.)

Brasilien: Droht die Gegen-Landreform?

Donnerstag, April 28th, 2011

“Brazil at Risk of Agrarian Counter-Reform

By Fabíola Ortiz

A process of “agrarian counter-reform” is taking place in Brazil, according to activist João Pedro Stédile, a leader of the Landless Rural Workers Movement (MST).

Stédile said Brazil’s land reform efforts faltered in the last few years of the government of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (2003-2011), while land ownership became more concentrated.

In the final stretch of President Lula’s second term, many legal expropriations of idle land on large estates were blocked in court.

In addition, the international financial crisis “had the opposite effect in Brazil, because in order to protect their funds, international capitalists ran to Brazil to invest in land and energy projects,” the activist said.

That led to a “perverse logic” in agriculture, in which purchases of unproductive land by the government were disputed and ownership became more concentrated, as part of “an agrarian counter-reform process,” he said.

The most recent official figures are from 2006. The Agricultural Census of that year, published in 2009 by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE), shows that the concentration of rural land has remained virtually unaltered in the last two decades.

In Brazil, one of the countries in the world with the most uneven distributions of land, around 3.5 percent of landowners hold 56 percent of the arable land while the poorest 40 percent own barely one percent.

According to the IBGE, properties larger than 1,000 hectares cover 46 percent of Brazil’s farmland, while properties smaller than 10 hectares occupy barely 2.7 percent.

“The concentration is worse now than in 1920, when we were just getting over slavery (which was abolished in 1888),” Stédile told IPS. “We hope the government of Dilma (Rousseff) will change the agrarian policy, starting with INCRA,” Brazil’s National Institute for Colonisation and Agrarian Reform.

Every year, “red April” marks the anniversary of the Apr. 17, 1996 massacre in Eldorado de Carajás, in the northern Amazon jungle state of Pará, when the military police opened fire on a peaceful demonstration by some 1,500 unarmed landless rural workers protesting the slow pace of land reform. Nineteen members of the MST were killed.

Every April, the MST seeks to put the question of agrarian reform back on the political agenda. The issue was ignored in the 2010 campaign, which culminated in the election of Rousseff, a member of the leftwing Workers Party (PT), like her predecessor Lula.

As in previous years, the MST launched a campaign pressing for the faster distribution of land, including protests in at least 20 of Brazil’s 26 states, and 100 occupations of idle portions of large landholdings.

The MST reports a total of 1.6 million members across Brazil, and some 100,000 families are living in its squatter camps around the country, pressing for the redistribution of land.

Celso Lisboa de Lacerda was named president of INCRA, the federal agency in charge of land distribution, this month.

The agronomist, who was appointed to his new post in a ceremony in Brasilia, said he would try to change the widespread view that “land reform” is synonymous with “conflict,” and he would try to come up with mechanisms of food production in the squatter camps.

“The big challenge is still to resolve the question of agrarian reform, and the fight against extreme poverty in the countryside is an important mission,” Lacerda told IPS. “At the start of President Lula’s government, a framework for land reform was established, replacing what was until then a mere distribution of land.”

The new president of INCRA, who has a background of involvement in social movements, defends the participation of organisations like the MST in designing public policies, and advocates “frank, sincere and transparent dialogue, without creating false expectations.”

In his first year at the head of INCRA, Lacerda plans to set goals and create structures for monitoring the implementation of public policies, while expanding the land reform institute, which currently has 30 superintendencies or regional offices, and a total of nearly 6,000 officials and employees.

INCRA’s 2011 budget is four billion reals (around 2.4 billion dollars), considered insufficient by Lacerda.

The president of INCRA acknowledged that the process of expropriation of idle land by the government for the purposes of agrarian reform – in accordance with the Brazilian constitution which explicitly states that land must be used for the benefit of society – is too slow.

“It is a very precarious, complex, dispute-ridden process,” said Lacerda. “At times the property spends 15 years winding its way through the courts. We do what can be done, that’s the naked truth.”

Close to 500,000 families have been settled on plots of their own, according to the MST. But the movement says that more than four million rural families are still landless in this country of 191 million people.

Stédile criticised what he called INCRA’s “inoperativeness,” which has been aggravated by cases of corruption in some superintendencies.

But in an interview with IPS in Rio de Janeiro, the MST leader said the new government, which took office in January, could “revitalise” the institute.

“In the last three years, INCRA has become an inoperative, ineffective agency, plagued by serious cases of corruption. The majority of the superintendents were appointed by factions of political parties. We are hopeful that the new president will live up to the government’s social commitment, and to the task of providing training and advice” to the newly resettled farmers, Stédile said.

The country’s social movements were encouraged by Rousseff’s promise to make the fight against poverty a top priority of her government.

“Fighting poverty in rural areas necessarily implies the right of access to land,” Stédile said. “It’s not just a question of resolving problems on an emergency footing. We have to come up with a new land reform programme that simultaneously combines expropriation, the installation of agribusiness, and the achievement of universal education.” (END)

 

(Quelle: IPS News.)

Nachrichten-Überblick 22.07.2010

Donnerstag, Juli 22nd, 2010

[22.07.2010 – 09:59]

 

* BRD: “I’m not a pirate – I’m a fisherman”

Zehn Jungen und Männern aus Somalia soll wegen Angriffs auf den Seeverkehr sowie versuchten erpresserischen Menschenraubs vor dem Landgericht Hamburg der erste Piratenprozess seit 400 Jahren gemacht werden.

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* HAITI: Wiederaufbau in Eigenregie als einzige Chance

It appears that Haiti’s “15 minutes of fame” are up. With few exceptions, the journalists who flooded the zone following the earthquake are nowhere to be seen. And the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s harsh criticism of the rebuilding effort six months after the earthquake is a sign that patience is wearing thin. Meanwhile, the lives of Haitians on the ground are still appalling — over a million in tent cities and squatter villages, rain flooding their streets, rape on the rise, too many basic services not restored.

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* MALAYSIA: Debate on Sex Education Rises with Teen Pregnancies

The prospect of motherhood filled 17-year-old Fatimah’s heart with dread.

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* BOTSWANA: Wasser ist kein Menschenrecht

San bushmen in Botswana have lost a court case to allow them to re-open a vital waterhole in the centre of the Kalahari desert. Diamonds were found in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, traditional home to the bushmen, in the 1980s – and the government asked them to leave.

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* COSTA RICA: Die USA bringen sich in ihrem “Hinterhof” in Stellung

With votes secured from the official National Liberation Party (PLN), the Libertarian Movement, and Justo Orozco, the evangelical congressman from the Costa Rican Renovation party, on July 1st, the Costa Rican Congress authorized the entry into that country of 46 warships from the U.S. Navy, 200 helicopters and combat aircraft and 7,000 Marines.

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* AFRIKA: “Marktwirtschaft” zerstört kleinbäuerliche Landwirtschaft

As evidenced by USAID administrator Rajiv Shah’s recent speech to the US Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC), the US and the Green Revolution’s ‘solutions’ for African agriculture remain more of the same, rooted in a corporate-funded, GMO-oriented and market-based system designed entirely in the interests of Western business. While US development aid fasts becomes simply ‘an investment subsidised by US taxpayers with high returns for US corporations’, African farmers’ groups such as COPAGEN, LEISA and PELUM continue to organise in defence of self-determination and genetic biodiversity, writes Richard Jonasse.

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* GROSSBRITANNIEN: Vor dem Irak-Krieg wurden Märchen erzählt

Britische Geheimdienstchefin bestätigt, dass Saddam Hussein keine Bedrohung darstellte und mit den Anschlägen vom 11.9. nichts zu tun hatte.

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* GLOBAL: Tödlicher Staub – der globale Handel mit Asbest

A global network of lobby groups has spent nearly $100 million since the mid-1980s to preserve the international market for asbestos, a known carcinogen that’s taken millions of lives and is banned or restricted in 52 countries, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists has found in a nine-month investigation.

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* ISRAEL: Neues Raketenabwehrsystem erfolgreich getestet

“Iron Dome” soll Raketen-Angriffe aus Gaza und dem Südlibanon abwehren. Kritiker bemängeln die Reichweite.

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* MALAYSIA: Indigene Frauen Vergewaltigungsopfer der Holfäller-Mafia

A new report has exposed an ‘environment of violence’ against tribeswomen in Borneo. According to the report, released by a coalition of Malaysian human rights groups called the Penan Support Group, there have been repeated cases of rape and sexual assault against Penan women by the loggers who are destroying the tribe’s forests.

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* MONGOLEI: Ist die Kultur der NomadInnen am Ende?

Herders leave the steppe after losing a fifth of their livestock. Now foreign firms are to exploit Mongolia’s vast resources.

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* PAZIFIK: Kleine Inselstaaten drängen zur Eile bei Klimafinanzierung

Die Vereinten Nationen haben in diesem Jahr zwar eine hochkarätige Gruppe für die Finanzierung der Maßnahmen zur Bekämpfung und Anpassung des Klimawandels ins Leben gerufen. Doch die kleinen unmittelbar von der Erderwärmung bedrohten Inselstaaten im Pazifik fürchten, dass ihnen auch mit einem solchen Gremium die notwendigen Gelder nicht rechtzeitig zufließen werden.

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* BRD: Tod und Verwundung treffen Bundeswehr

Auf ihrem Internet-Portal kündigt die Bundeswehr am 20. Juli 2010 ein Arbeitspapier zum “Umgang mit Verwundung, Tod und Trauer im Einsatz” an, dass “Mitte August” von Bundeswehrangehörigen im Intranet der Bundeswehr eingesehen werden kann.

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* REPUBLIK SÜDAFRIKA: Militärpolizei zum Schutz der MigrantInnen

South Africa’s military joined police on Tuesday to patrol a Johannesburg township after assaults on foreign migrants injured at least 11 and increased concerns of a fresh wave of xenophobic attacks.

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* EU: “Kleiner Kreis entscheidet über die Zukunft der Landwirtschaft in Europa”

Das Europäische Patentamt muss eine Grundsatzentscheidung über die Patentierbarkeit von Pflanzen treffen.

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* NIGERIA: Ölquelle von ExxonMobil leck…

Fishermen in Ibeno, Southern Akwa Ibom, said they have reported the discharge of liquid suspected to be crude oil at the Qua Iboe oil fields in the Atlantic Ocean. Chief Inyang Ekong, the Secretary of the Artisan Fishermen Association of Nigeria in Akwa Ibom disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibeno, Akwa Ibom.
Ekong said that some fishermen noticed the discharge near the offshore oil production platforms operated by Mobil Producing Nigeria, an affiliate of the U.S. oil firm, ExxonMobil.

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* KANADA: Regierung verabschiedet sich leise von der Biodiversitäts-Konvention

The spirit of international negotiations in Montreal on a draft protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) of natural resources were marred by Canada’s insistence on a decentralised approach to ABS, Peigi Wilson, a Métis lawyer present at the meeting in support of the Quebec Native Women.

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[Update: 12:14]

* BURKINA FASO / NIGER: Grenzfrage soll friedlich entschieden werden

The West African countries of Burkina Faso and Niger have submitted a dispute over their common border to the United Nations International Court of Justice (ICJ) as part of a wider agreement by the two States to resolve the situation peacefully.

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* USA: Bald nanotechnologisch veränderte Lebensmittel?

Nanotechnology involves the ability to control matter at the scale of a nanometer—one billionth of a meter. The world market for products that contain nanomaterials is expected to reach $2.6 trillion by 2015.

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* BOLIVIEN: Neue Verfassung

Letztes Rahmengesetz verabschiedet: Verfassungsreform kann umgesetzt werden. Blockaden der Opposition blieben ohne Wirkung.

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* MEXIKO: US-Bank Wachovia hilft bei Drogengeldwäsche

The bank, now a unit of Wells Fargo, leads a list of firms that have moved dirty money for Mexico’s narcotics cartels–helping a $39 billion trade that has killed more than 22,000 people since 2006.

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* SOMALIA: Der “Krieg gegen den Terror” bedroht nicht nur Uganda

The U.S. war against Somalia expands outwards and “has now blown back to Uganda,” the U.S. ally that, “along with the minority Tutsi dictatorship in Rwanda, is America’s most reliable mercenary force in Black Africa.” Ethiopia and Kenya prepare to join Uganda in an offensive against the Somali resistance, to save America’s puppet mini-state in Mogadishu.

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* BRASILIEN: Hat sich die Landlosenbewegung von Lula kaufen lassen?

Tagelang herrschte Verwirrung auf allen Seiten rund um den parlamentarischen Untersuchungsausschuss zur öffentlichen Finanzierung der Landlosenbewegung MST. Für die Regierung war die Arbeit des Ausschusses mit dem Stichtag 17. Juli beendet. Nicht so für die Opposition, die mit einem überraschenden Schachzug in letzter Minute die Verlängerung des Ausschusses um weitere sechs Monate durchsetzte. Mitten im Wahlkampf um die Nachfolge von Präsident Lula da Silva könnte die regierende Arbeiterpartei PT damit ein Problem bekommen. Der Ausschuss war Ende letzten Jahres auf Drängen der Opposition eingerichtet worden, um die öffentliche Finanzierung des MST durch die Regierung zu untersuchen.

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* GAZA: Wer hat das Licht ausgemacht?

The Gaza Strip presently experiences 8-12 hours of scheduled power outages per day, which disrupt the normal functioning of humanitarian infrastructure, including health and education institutions and water and sewage systems, as well as the agricultural sector. The power outages also take a toll in human lives of people killed or injured by using generators, which are brought into Gaza through the tunnels, are of poor quality, and are not always used according to safety instructions. How was this shortage created and what can be done to resolve it?

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* KASCHMIR: Brutale Gewalt durch indische Truppen

Indian troops and police have killed fifteen people in Kashmir since June, sparking widespread protests. The Indian government has imposed a strict military curfew in the area as well as a media gag order on local journalists. The international community has remained silent on the human rights abuses in Kashmir.

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* GLOBAL: Krieg gegen die Erde

If you live on the Gulf Coast, welcome to the real world of oil — and just know that you’re not alone. In the Niger Delta and the Ecuadorian Amazon, among other places, your emerging hell has been the living hell of local populations for decades.

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* USA: Krieg gegen den Terror kostet bislang 1 Billion US-Dollar

A Congressional Research Service report on the costs of America’s assorted wars has put the global war on terror since September 11, 2001 at over $1 trillion, making it the second most expensive military action in American history, adjusting for inflation.

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* BRD: Gegen höhere Schutzstandards beim Asylrecht

Deutschland blockiert aus Sorge vor einer vermeintlichen «Sogwirkung» den Aufbau eines europäischen Asylsystems. Dies machte Innenstaatssekretär Ole Schröder am Donnerstag auf einem EU-Justiz- und Innenministertreffens in Brüssel klar. (…) Die von der EU-Kommission vorgeschlagenen höheren Rechtsschutzstandards würden die deutsche Praxis der Schnellabschiebungen an Flughäfen aber «aushöhlen», sagte der CDU-Politiker.

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* JORDANIEN: Stimmungsmache gegen PalästinenserInnen

Robert Fisk: Why Jordan is occupied by Palestinians
A powerful group of ex-army leaders say their country is being overrun – and they blame King Abdullah.

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* GLOBAL: Menschen hungern, weil zu wenig Nahrung produziert wird! – Ach, wirklich?

2008, the world witnessed an unprecedented food crisis. Food prices skyrocketed, and staple food disappeared from the market shelves. The resulting tremors were felt across the globe, with some 37 countries facing food riots.
Was the food crisis an outcome of the drought in Australia? Or was it because wheat production had fallen? Or was it because quite a sizable area under foodgrains had been diverted for biofuel production? The world had debated these options, but what emerged clearly was that much of it was triggered because of speculation in the futures trade. In fact, it was much worse than what was earlier anticipated.

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* NAHER / MITTLERER OSTEN: Run auf die Atomkraft (und damit auf Atomwaffen)

“Saudi Arabia’s decision last week to sign a nuclear cooperation pact with France marks a major step forward for a pan-Arab drive toward nuclear power,” reports UPI. “All told, 13 Middle Eastern states, including Egypt, have announced plans — or dusted off old plans — to build nuclear power stations since 2006. All say they have no intention of seeking to develop nuclear weapons. But there is concern that once they’ve mastered the technology they’ll seek to counter Iran’s alleged push to acquire such weapons by doing so themselves.”

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* KAMBODSCHA: SexarbeiterInnen werden illegal festgenommen und inhaftiert

Die kambodschanische Regierung soll umgehend Maßnahmen einleiten, um die Gewalt gegen SexarbeiterInnen zu beenden sowie die Regierungseinrichtungen schließen, in denen die Betroffenen illegal inhaftiert und missbraucht wurden, so Human Rights Watch.

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* BRD: Schützenhilfe für die Atomindustrie

Die Ärzteorganisation IPPNW kritisiert die heute von der Universität Mainz der Presse vorgestellte Studie “Kinder und Kernkraft” (KuK-Studie) zu angeborenen Fehlbildungen in der Umgebung von Atomkraftwerken als argumentative Schützenhilfe zu Gunsten der Atomindustrie. Die Mainzer Studie hat aufgrund geringer Fallzahlen eine zu geringe statistische Nachweisstärke (power), um einen Effekt in ähnlicher Größenordnung wie in der vorangegangenen Studie zu Kinderkrebs um Atomkraftwerke (KiKK-Studie) nachzuweisen.

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* LIBANON: Frauen-Hilfsschiff will Gaza-Blockade durchbrechen

The ‘Maryam’, an all-female Lebanese aid ship, currently docked in the northern Lebanese port of Tripoli, is getting ready to set sail for Gaza in the next few days. The ship, which aims to break Israel’s siege on the Palestinian territory, will carry about 50 aid workers, including some U.S. nuns keen to deliver aid to the long-suffering women and children of Gaza.

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[Update: 14:17]

* AFGHANISTAN: Kein Zutrauen ins Parlament

Afghans Disillusioned with Candidate Choice. Most current parliamentarians plan to stand again, despite widespread public mistrust and disappointment.

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* GLOBAL: Funktioniert das Wirtschaftssystem ohne Wachstum?

Is De-Growth Compatible with Capitalism? A serious campaign in favor of “de-growth” has been going on for some time and has made important contributions. This movement has opened new avenues for debate and analysis on technology, credit, education and other important areas. It’s an effort that needs support and attention, and we must applaud their initiators and promoters for their boldness and dedication.

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* ECUADOR:: Regierungskritische Positionen der Indigenen Völker

On July 5, I sat down with Marlon Santi, President of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE), in his office in Quito. We discussed the increasing contradictions between the demands of the indigenous movement, on the one hand, around water rights and anti-mining resistance, and the positions of the government of Rafael Correa, on the other, which has labelled indigenous resistance to large-scale mining and oil exploitation as “terrorism and sabotage.”

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* DACH: Antimuslimische Ressentiments

Die westliche Zivilisation wird in deutschsprachigen Zeitungen von Leuten wie Broder und Sarazin verteidigt, als ob SIE wieder vor Wien ständen. Die barbarischen Seiten des Westens werden beim Islam-Bashing gerne und schnell unter den Teppich gekehrt. Die deutsche Integrationspolitik schrumpft über die Symbolpolitik à la Islamkonferenz auf religiöse Fragen zusammen, Aspekte von sozialer Ungleichheit werden ausgeklammert.

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* USA: Kritik an Obamas Gesetz zur Finanzmarktreform

“In den USA ist die größte Finanzmarktreform seit der Weltwirtschaftskrise in den 30er Jahren beschlossen worden”, schreibt die taz. Klingt groß, heißt wenig: die US-Finanz-Gesetzgebung ist seit Ende der 1960er Jahre eine Geschichte der De-Regulierung. Selbst diesmal konnte die Finanzlobby wichtige Regeln abschwächen – wie die taz an anderer Stelle kritisch berichtet.
Die US-Reform wird häufig als Erfolg der Politik bewertet – aber selbst angesichts der dramatischen Krise konnte die Finanzbranche durch massive Lobbyarbeit das “Dodd-Frank Financial Reform Bill” an wichtigen Stellen verwässern. So gibt es zahlreiche kritische Einschätzungen.

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* INDONESIEN: Weltbank finanziert zerstörerische Nickel-Mine

An international civil society coalition today condemned the World Bank for approving support for a destructive nickel mine that would displace Indigenous Peoples, destroy vast areas of intact tropical forest, and threaten rivers and the ocean with sediment and toxic chemicals.

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* USA: Historiker warnt vor dem plötzlichen Zusammenbruch des “US-Imperiums”

Der Harvard-Professor und erfolgreiche Autor Niall Ferguson eröffnete am Montag das Festival der Ideen 2010 des Aspen-Institutes mit der ernst gemeinten Warnung, wegen seiner ständig steigenden Verschuldung werde ein plötzlicher Zusammenbruch des “US-Imperiums” immer wahrscheinlicher.
“Ich denke, dass dieses Problem sehr bald eintritt,” sagte Ferguson. “Damit meine ich innerhalb der
nächsten zwei Jahre, weil sich die Situation finanziell und in anderer Hinsicht immer mehr dem Chaos nähert. Wir haben gerade in Griechenland erlebt, was geschieht, wenn der Kapitalmarkt das Vertrauen in die Finanzpolitik eines Landes verliert.” Ferguson erinnerte daran, dass Imperien – wie die ehemalige Sowjetunion und das römische Reich – ganz schnell kollabieren können und der Wendepunkt häufig dann eintritt, wenn die Zinsen für die Schulden eines Imperiums höher werden als seine Verteidigungsausgaben.

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* INDIEN: Diplomatische Verrenkungen beim Atomwaffensprerrvertrag

The recently concluded Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference (RevCon) has renewed the call for the universalisation of the treaty. The NPT RevCon has asked India along with Pakistan and Israel – the three non-signatory states to the NPT- to unilaterally disarm and join the treaty as Non-Nuclear Weapon States (NNWS). However, India possesses nuclear weapons.

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* RUSSLAND: Umweltschützer verhindern Wald-Rodung

Die russischen UmweltschützerInnen, die zu Dutzenden, teilweise sogar mit 300 Personen die Rodungsarbeiten in der Nähe des Moskauer Flughafens Scheremetjewo behindert haben, haben die Rodungen – vorerst – verhindert.

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* GUATEMALA: Königsgrab der Maya entdeckt

Luftdicht verschlossene Grabkammer konservierte prächtige Grabbeigaben und Knochen. Ein bisher unbekanntes Königsgrab der Maya haben ArchäologInnen in der Maya-Stadt El Zotz im Dschungel Guatemalas entdeckt. Es enthielt ungewöhnlich gut erhaltene, 1.600 Jahre alte Schnitzereien, Keramiken und Stoffe sowie die Knochen von einem Erwachsenen und sechs möglicherweise geopferten Kindern. Das prächtig ausgestattete Grab gehört wahrscheinlich einem Herrscher, möglicherweise dem Gründer einer Dynastie der präklassischen Maya.

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* GROSSBRITANNIEN: Kriegsdienstverweigernder Soldat aus Haft entlassen

Joe Glenton, the soldier who refused to return to fight in Afghanistan and who spoke out against the war, was released from military prison.

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* VIETNAM: Einbürgerung von Flüchtlingen aus Kambodscha

Ho-Chi-Minh-Stadt – Mit einem Festakt hat die vietnamesische Regierung 287 ehemalige Flüchtlinge aus Kambodscha eingebürgert. UNHCR begrüßt diesen Schritt außerordentlich. Vietnam gibt dadurch ein wichtiges Signal, die Staatenlosigkeit für insgesamt mehr als 2.300 ehemalige Flüchtlinge aus Kambodscha endgültig ad acta zu legen. Die meisten Kambodschaner waren 1975 vor Pol Pots blutigem Regime nach Vietnam geflohen.

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* KIRGISIEN: “Millionär werden, das ist Demokratie!”

In Kirgistan trägt die Marktwirtschaft ganz eigene Züge: Nach dem Ende der “Sozialistischen Sowjetrepublik” wurden Fettschwanzschafe, Wallnussbäume und Spitzmorcheln privatisiert. Seitdem greifen viele Kirgisen uralte Nomadentraditionen wieder auf: Sie pendeln auf dem Pferd zwischen Wäldern, Wiesen und Hochalmen und leben im Sommer in Jurten. Das klingt romantisch, doch die meisten Kirgisen müssen heute ums Überleben kämpfen oder erinnern sich wehmütig an die Sowjetzeit mit ihren großen Betrieben und festen Arbeitsplätzen. Andere sind weniger nostalgisch: „Jetzt kann jeder Millionär werden, das ist Demokratie“, lobt ausgerechnet die bettelarme Gulnara, deren Familie allein vom Erlös gesammelter Nüsse lebt.

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* AFGHANISTAN: Unendliche Besatzung?

The international foreign ministers conference held in Kabul Tuesday formally endorsed President Hamid Karzai’s proposed 2014 target for Afghan forces to assume the lead responsibility for the country’s security, while acknowledging that the foreign occupation will continue indefinitely.

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* BRD: Niebels Zaudern im Kampf gegen AIDS

Der Entwicklungshilfeminister gefährdet die internationale Aids-Hilfe. Deutschland könnte als drittgrößter Geldgeber bald ausfallen. Ein fatales Signal, meint H. Albrecht.

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* ZENTRALAFRIKANISCHE REPUBLIK: Friedensprozess gerät ins Stocken

A Sudanese led rebel faction in the Central African Republic has engaged the armies of the Central African Republic (CAR) over a disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) process- under a peace agreement signed ahead of national elections in CAR, military and rebel sources said.

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* USA: Die Wiederkehr der Sklaverei

For the first time, the U.S. government acknowledges modern-day slavery in the United States.
One-hundred-and-fifty years after the abolition of slavery, the State Department has acknowledged that people in the United States continue to be bought and sold as property. The department’s 2010 “Trafficking in Persons” (TIP) report, a global review of human trafficking and civic and legal responses to it, lists the United States for the first time among the nations that harbor modern-day slavery.

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