Archive for the 'editorial' Category

Greece shows the way forward . . .

Sunday, June 19th, 2011

The citizens of Greece are the first people in Europe this century to come together in solidarity and face down their own Government. They believe their political class have surrendered the rights of a democratic people to the bondholders, banks and hedge funds who are demanding the impoverishment of their nation to pay for the ever-ballooning profits of the global financial sector.

The ongoing protests can be tracked on the Greek Indymedia page and here . . .

Greece-riots1
The Greek people show the way forward – Bankers, go to Hell!

The people of Europe are about to be hit by the second heist in two years – where their long-fought for welfare systems and egalitarian societies are reduced to feudal penury by the machinations of bankers, financial hucksters and politicians.

Not many commentators in the mass media mention that ;

”First, it takes two sides to create a bond crisis. For every reckless borrower there is a reckless lender. The Greek government might have lied about its budget deficit and been needlessly extravagant during the boom years. But nobody was forced to lend the Greek government any money. Investors should have asked themselves where the money was going, and how sustainable Greek economic growth would be. They didn’t. Instead they just saw that yields were higher than on German or French debt, and jumped onto what looked like a gravy train.”

The drama is being played out in the streets and town squares of Greece; the Parliament is virtually under siege, and the crowds who represent the whole spectrum of Greek society and political belief, are united in their ambition to depose the ruling class and disrupt the well-laid plans of the financial oligarchy to ‘privatise’ Europe.

Braving the tear gas

The protests have been met by a police force amply equipped with tear gas, batons and equipment  – and we’re sure that NATO will not allow them to run out . . .

However, inspired in part by the Egyptian and Tunisian revolts, in which massive and diverse crowds took over their own locale ; the Greeks and the Spanish are now occupying town squares and plazas across their respective  countries.

The logistics of this popular strategy can be found here on the Occupied London site.

Greek demonstrator returns his loan with interest

 It will be interesting to see how the refusal of the population to play the bankers’ game will play out across Europe. It’s rumoured that the latest wave of Greek protests started after the Spanish demonstrations in their provincial town squares against similar ‘austerity measures’  featured banners asking ‘Where are the Greeks ?’

It is becoming clear that the Greek Government – nominally a social democrat administration – which is tasked by the IMF with introducing ‘austerity measures’ to pay for the bad management and profligacy of the banks, will have to enforce them against the will of the people.

Pensions have been halved, welfare slashed and State assets are being lined up for a firesale to the financial elite that has already profitted from the impoverishment of Europe’s economy through ‘outsourcing’ and ‘globalisation.’

Now the bankers, economists and politicians have been popping up on every media outlet decrying the fact that a modern democratic people  have looked at the choices they are being offered by the ruling oligarchy and decided that they will be quite happy to see their country default on the ‘loans’  from the ‘bondholders’.

Job well done ! - Riot Dog leaves the battlefield

Si Si Si ! – and a big NO to Berlusconi, nuclear power and water privatisation

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

 

Crowds celebrate referendum victory in Italy

As the disaster at Fukishima continues, the fallout has been as heavy in terms of the public perceptions of nuclear safety as it has on the poor people of the Eastern seaboard of Japan. Although its disappearance from the main-source news systems means that people could assume the central problems at the plant are under control; there has been a lot of disturbing news which is hidden in NGO reports which is now surfacing in whistleblowing blogs and online journals.

It is partly for this reason that the groundswell of anti-nuclear opinion has forced the once -impregnable Ms Merkel into a moratorium on any further development in Germany; and the Italians have now voted decisively to reject nuclear power, along with the privatisation of the water supply, and a change in the law which would have allowed Government ministers to avoid justice.

A report from the Guardian describes the effect of these results  and how they will affect the ultimate fate of Berlusconi’s everlasting regime . . .

The result represented an overwhelming setback for the prime minister, who had tried to thwart the outcome by discouraging Italians from taking part. The referendum needed a turnout of at least 50% to be binding. Interior ministry figures projections indicated that more than 57% of the electorate had taken part. Greenpeace called it a historic result. Quorums were also reached in three other referendums held simultaneously – the first time in 16 years that a quorum had been achieved in any referendum in Italy.

Official projections showed more than 95% of voters rejecting water privatisation and a law allowing Berlusconi and other ministers to cite government business as a reason for delaying trials in which they were defendants. The expected majority against nuclear power was 94% . . . . (Berlusconi) first ran into serious trouble on 30 May when his candidate for mayor of Milan lost in a local election runoff. Milan is Berlusconi’s home city and traditionally a weather-vane accurately pointing to Italy’s future political direction.

Italy Referendum flyer

The report continues;

Italy abandoned its nuclear programme following a similar referendum in 1987. The government of the day opted to phase out all the country’s existing plants. The last one shut down in 1990. Berlusconi had planned to generate a quarter of Italy’s electricity with French-built nuclear plants. Construction of the first was due to start between 2013 and 2015.

Vittorio Cogliati Dezza, president of the environmental organisation Legambiente, said: “The era of nuclear [energy] is coming to an end today. Definitively. A new season of development for the country is beginning.”

Let’s hope that democracy prevails, and the ever-wily Berlusconi – a corporate frontman since his early days in the P2 Lodge – doesn’t help facillitate the sort of crisis which allows these results to be reversed . . .

From the article in Wikipedia

P2 was sometimes referred to as a “state within a state”[2] or a “shadow government“.[3] The lodge had among its members prominent journalists, members of parliament, industrialists, and military leaders—including Silvio Berlusconi, who later became Prime Minister of Italy; the Savoy pretender to the Italian throne Victor Emmanuel; and the heads of all three Italian intelligence services . . . . When searching Licio Gelli’s villa, the police found a document called the “Plan for Democratic Rebirth”, which called for a consolidation of the media, suppression of trade unions, and the rewriting of the Italian Constitution.

A response to the vote by an Italian activist can be found here

Bilderberg – Kissinger’s death cult

Friday, June 10th, 2011

 

Suvretta House-Bilderberg Conference Centre 2011

In the next week St Moritz in Switzerland will be playing host to the latest Bilderberg Meeting – a collection of characters that SPECTRE would be proud of – finance ministers, media moguls, and representatives of the corporate elite who own virtually all of the world’s mass production in areas like mining, agriculture and energy. Bilderberg is the name of a hotel in Oosterbeek, Holland, where the group first gathered in 1954 to strengthen relations between Western Europe and the United States.

Of course, according to ‘rationalists’ like David Aaronovitch, it would be tantamount to tinfoil-hat conspiracy-mongering to suggest that these people are doing anything other than sharing a few rounds of golf and talking about the weather; but even the most naive ‘rationalist’ would raise an eyebrow at the presence of the ubiquitous war criminal, Henry Kissinger at the gathering.

This is the man who produced a National Security Council study in 1974 looking at the ‘problems’ for future US policy which might be caused by ‘overpopulation’.  (You can read the full text here )

I think the main item on the agenda will be the possibilities available to these mainly unelected, totally unaccountable figures to eradicate a sizeable proportion of the world’s population, especially in those countries deemed ‘unproductive’ or ‘unco-operative’ or whose mineral resources are desirable.
That’s why the criminal Kissinger is there at the helm of the BB pack (and does anyone really know who this guy is, or where he comes from ?);

    Something they might talk about on the golf course, or over tea and cakes; 

    National Security Memo 200, dated April 24, 1974, and titled “Implications of world wide population growth for U.S. security & overseas interests” says:

    “Dr. Henry Kissinger proposed in his memorandum to the NSC that “depopulation should be the highest priority of U.S. foreign policy towards the Third World.” He quoted reasons of national security, and because `(t)he U.S. economy will require large and increasing amounts of minerals from abroad, especially from less-developed countries … Wherever a lessening of population can increase the prospects for such stability, population policy becomes relevant to resources, supplies and to the economic interests of U.S.

    Look at the Congo, Sri Lanka, or anywhere the good ol’ USA and it’s hangers-on want to ‘stake an interest’ – all seems to be going completely to plan.

    The ‘conference’ is pretty much ignored by the mainstream media – in the UK they have much more important issues to debate like footballers’ infidelities and celebrity burn-outs; the only mainstream paper to even pick up on the story is The Guardian, whose Charlie Skelton has been at it for three years now.

    Apparently, a Swiss MP has called for the arrest of several war criminals who are believed to be attending the conference;

    According to a letter on the Bilderberg conference addressed to Simonetta Sommaruga, a National Council member and head of the Jura Police Department, Jura representative Dominique Baettig is calling for the arrest of conference participants who are internationally wanted for war crimes (George W. Bush, Henry Kissinger, Dick Cheney, and Richard Perle). Based on the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, such action is called for when a country makes a referral or response to an initiative by the U.N. Security Council, or by its own prosecuting authority.

    from the moderatevoice

    We will keep you as informed as possible . . .

NATO’s illegal Wars of Terror

Saturday, June 4th, 2011

The arrest of Ratko Mladić in Sebia and his swift despatch to The Hague has been trumpeted by the members of NATO as a triumph for justice and a chance of closure for the victims of the devastating civil war following the break up of Yugoslavia.

A woman walks past graffiti of captured Bosnian Serb fugitive General Ratko Mladic in Belgrade

However, it may well be sending some uncomfortable shivers down the spines of the generals and political leaders of this aggressive, expansionist alliance.

NATO is acting as a law unto itself; as an extended arm of US military imperial ambition, since the break-up of the Soviet Union it has been the shield behind which the North American government pushes deep into territories it regards as malleable and ripe for conquest or extended disorder.

Since the NATO attacks on Yugoslavia in 1999 (which is still regarded as illegal by many), NATO has been involved in constant war. The result of that war was the dismemberment of the last non-aligned multi-ethnic state in Eastern Europe with the economic potential to pursue a successful future as a social-democratic Republic.

However, the USA – still with the Cold War agenda of pushing right up to the borders of Russia –  and Britain, with it’s slavish poodle stance to US foreign policy, as well as some sort of pathetic ambition to re-install the old decrepit and corrupt monarchies, teamed up to make sure that the whole place fell apart in spectacular fashion.

The main benefactor of all that death and destruction was – surprise, surprise – the USA, who turned a large part of the pseudo-state of Kosovo into a forward operating base in the East – Camp Bondsteel, a monstrosity  with a six-mile perimeter fence. A good description of its scale and the reasons it was constructed can be found here;

In June 1999, in the immediate aftermath of the bombing of Yugoslavia, US forces seized 1,000 acres of farmland in southeast Kosovo at Uresevic, near the Macedonian border, and began the construction of a camp. . .  Camp Bondsteel, the biggest “from scratch” foreign US military base since the Vietnam War  (…) It is located close to vital oil pipelines and energy corridors presently under construction, such as the US sponsored Trans-Balkan oil pipeline. As a result defence contractors—in particular Halliburton Oil subsidiary Brown & Root Services—are making a fortune

Since then, the ‘alliance’ – which should really be termed the AXIS, since that is what it most resembles, has been waging war across the globe, assuming the moral perogative to decide who deserves to live and die, and which regimes should fall and which should survive.

Whilst Libya struggles to stay in one piece, and even static border posts are being wiped out by UK Apache attack helicopters; the murderous regime in Bahrain – which is  persecuting doctors involved in helping wounded demonstrators – has announced it’s business as usual for the idle playboy sport of Formula 1.

Then as Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa was meeting Colonel Gadaffi in his bombed-out compound in Tripoli last week, the prospect of any deal brokered by the African Union seemed remoter than ever.

NATO – and, we are told, the insurgents in Benghazi –  rejected any peace deal which does not include the instant resignation of Gadaffi and the surrender of the Libyan Government. This is how far the NATO Command has moved from the ‘protection of civilian life’; it is now clearly and blatantly demanding regime change.

It will be interesting to see how many legislators in the organisation’s Parliaments notice this blatant disregard of the UN mandate, or bother to question the legality of this continuing bombardment of population centres and infastructure.

I reccommend Dispatch From TripoliNATO’s Feast of Blood by CYNTHIA McKINNEY (from Tripoli for Counterpunch.)

While serving on the House International Relations Committee from 1993 to 2003, it became clear to me that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was an anachronism. Founded in 1945 at the end of World War II, NATO was founded by the United States in response to the Soviet Union’s survival as a Communist state. NATO was the U.S. insurance policy that capitalist ownership and domination of European, Asian, and African economies would continue. This also would ensure the survival of the then-extant global apartheid.

As the drones still keep up the death-toll of civilians in Afghanistan and Pakistan (a sovereign country  which the USA has never declared war on), it is becoming more difficult to believe that this sort of aggressive illegal warfare will not be paid for further down the line.

Of course, the working populations in the NATO Axis are paying for the million – pound attacks, with their taxes now going to the corporate war machine rather than schools for their kids and hospitals for the sick and elderly; and the price is certainly being paid by the villagers and townsfolk who are decimated, murdered or permanently crippled by these attacks.

The US Government plans to double its drone fleet in just nine years – this in a country that can’t be bothered to provide general healthcare and where the middle-class unemployed are evicted to live with their families in cars and eat at soup kitchens . . .

An article in Wired magazine discusses the legality of these attacks;

Loyola Law School professor David Glazier, a former Navy surface warfare officer, said the pilots operating the drones from afar could — in theory — be hauled into court in the countries where the attacks occur. That’s because the CIA’s drone pilots aren’t combatants in a legal sense. “It is my opinion, as well as that of most other law-of-war scholars I know, that those who participate in hostilities without the combatant’s privilege do not violate the law of war by doing so, they simply gain no immunity from domestic laws,” he said. “Under this view CIA drone pilots are liable to prosecution under the law of any jurisdiction where attacks occur for any injuries, deaths or property damage they cause,” Glazier continued. “But under the legal theories adopted by our government in prosecuting Guantánamo detainees, these CIA officers as well as any higher-level government officials who have authorized or directed their attacks are committing war crimes.”

Another article deals with the ‘targetting’ of supposed ‘Taliban  residences’ which seemingly is often done by paid informers, who obviously have their own agendas. Civilian ‘collateral deaths’ seem to be a price the USA is happily prepared to risk – after all, they are neither white, nor American;

In April, 19 year-old Habibur Rehman made a videotaped “confession” of planting such devices, just before he was executed by the Taliban as an American spy. “I was given $122 to drop chips wrapped in cigarette paper at Al Qaeda and Taliban houses,” he said. If I was successful, I was told, I would be given thousands of dollars.”But Rehman says he didn’t just tag jihadists with the devices. “The money was good so I started throwing the chips all over. I knew people were dying because of what I was doing, but I needed the money,” he added. Which raises the possibility that the unmanned aircraft — America’s key weapons in its covert war on Pakistan’s jihadists and insurgents — may have been lead to the wrong targets.

Of course, whilst the US war machine keeps rolling along, supported by a bankrupt economy and the evermore depleted Western European nations, it is unlikely that we will see a procession of wizened Americans shuffling into the dock .

However, the balance of power in the world is changing faster than most people in the USA or even Europe fully comprehend, and it might just be that we watch the once arrogant and self-justifying warmongers of the NATO alliance standing shackled in the dock to answer charges of murder, mayhem and waging aggressive war far sooner than seems possible at the moment.

POST SCRIPT; Gaddafi’s daughter has taken the first step in treating these acts of remotely controlled warfare as crimes perpetrated in the countries where the political control is exercised.

The daughter of Muammar Gaddafi has filed lawsuits against NATO alleging war crimes in the air strikes that are said to have killed her relatives.

The lawsuits have been filed in Paris and Brussels naming France’s role in the attacks and Belgium as the base of the NATO alliance. The charges lodged by Aisha al-Gaddafi are based on the killings of the Libyan leader’s youngest son and three grandchildren; all three children were under the age of 12. One of the children was Aisha al-Gaddafi’s four-month-old daughter, Mastoura.

The suits do not name a specific defendant, but the complaints call upon the authorities to ‘find, identify and punish the perpetrators and the accomplices involved in the April 30 airstrike by the alliance’. Her attorneys state that NATO’s decision to target a civilian home constitutes a war crime.

More here . . .

 

 

The war on dissent goes up another gear . . .

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

The Royal Wedding has come and – thankfully – gone; the way of most Disneyesque events promoted by the British Establishment.
It was preceeded by a wave of surveillance-led arrests which proved that even if the UK’s secret state didn’t apparently manage to stop 7/7 or catch up with the mysterious Martin McDaid [see below], its still pretty good at arresting a few squatters and performance artists.
Our friends at the Ratstar squat in Camberwell, who have been living peacefully in an abandoned building for a long time with the knowledge of the local plod, were all given a tug on the day before the Pantomime and charged with pinching electricity [if they were paying industrial supply rates, they’d probably cover the years supply with a fiver].
At least four other squats were raided on the same day – another in Camberwell, South East London, and three in Hackney.

The lack of any sort of any legitimate rationale was apparent when the police rounded up the few anarchists and dissidents who dared go anywhere near the Pantomime venue;

The action against the 10 or so people participating in the Right Royal Orgy in Soho Square was one of several pre-emptive strikes by Scotland Yard. Police said they made a total of 52 arrests including 13 at Charing Cross station, where people were found to have climbing equipment and anti-monarchy placards, in addition to 21 arrests during raids of five squats in London on Thursday morning.

Well done, police ! Public money well spent !

And you wonder why 90% of the population sees them at best as a bunch of doughnut-munching wasters, and at worst as an occupying force on the nation’s streets.
Another hilarious sign of how far we have travelled down the road of thought-fascism [the predecessor to ‘a boot stamping endlessly on a human face’] was the arrest – in front of TV cameras – of well-known Lewisham activist, Professor Chris Knight, author of books on anthropology and a performance artist in the Situationist mode.
All very entertaining, but as the sickly-sweet confetti starts turning to bitter ashes in the mouths of the famished masses, it’s worth reflecting on how this sort of State behaviour can be justified; and what it means for the future.
A week or so later, and we see articles appearing about the Metropolitan Police’s purchase of a software system that tracks people through social media; building up a picture of their movements, predictabilities, social contacts and attitudes.

Geotime, a security programme used by the US military, which shows an individual’s movements and communications with other people on a three-dimensional graphic. It can be used to collate information gathered from social networking sites, satellite navigation equipment, mobile phones, financial transactions and IP network logs.

from the Guardian

Here we have a tool which the Stasi would have been proud to possess – although not even in their wildest dreams would they have imagined such a nefarious capability.
For like most of these systems, it’s backwards- programmable; not only can you track, and build 3-D profiles of suspects, but you can also set a number of ‘filters’ and search terms and come up with a list of names.

Names of innocent people whose ‘profiles’ have turned them into suspects. And so we start sliding ever faster down the slippery slope into the mass graves and forced adoptions of the sort of regimes that people like the Francoists ran in Spain until the 1970’s.

A spokesman for the Met confirmed that Geotime had been paid for, and said several possible uses for it were being assessed, including as a tool in “telephone investigations”.
He declined to clarify what a telephone investigation might be or how much the software cost. Neither could he comment on whether the software might be used during investigations into public order offences in the future.

from the Guardian again

Apart from the animal rights activists, UK Uncut and other dissident groups, we will no doubt see this capability used increasingly against those uppity Scots. They haven’t only signalled that they are preparing for independence within 5 years, but also that they  would prefer a democratic republic rather than the mock-feudal oligarchy currently prevailing in the so-called United Kingdom.

The wealthy landowners who make up the English aristocracy will not want to see their vast huntin’ & shootin’  estates being confiscated by a social democratic Republic, led by someone who never went near Eton.

We know from the experience of Colin Wallace and the dirty tricks (aka Black Propaganda) department of the British state security services in Northern Ireland in the 1980’s, that they will stoop to any underhand methods to maintain the status quo.

Watch out, here come the dirty tricks . . . After AV they’ll be thinking of offering the turkeys a referendum on Christmas, but the canny Scots might not be so easy to fool . . . although it’s worth remembering the destruction of the Scottish Socialist Party and the demolition of Tommy Sheridan; who was responsible and who did the ‘dirty work’ . . .

Welcome readers . . . to fantompowa

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

Mushroom Bee God fantompowa

Welcome to the fantompowa blog.

We have been online with Flame since 1998, which seems like time before time  now; before the War of Terror, imperiums disseminating disorder and chaos, the collapse of currencies and the radiation of Japan.

Since then we have had thousands of emails from our readers and with this blog we aim to give some of our correspondents the chance of contributing to the commentary.

We are aware that some readers might not like our points of view; we would never claim to represent anyone but ourselves.
That is why, despite getting over 35,000 hits on our sites each month, we have never accepted advertising or commercial linking.

In a world where everything is given a price, the freedom of thought is the last frontier; the only way in which we are still able to be ourselves, unmoderated, uncontrolled.

We will discuss issues that have been raised in Flame as well as revealing new stories and providing different perspectives on the labyrinth through which we are all led into like as if we were blind Prometheus’.
Before we leave this introduction, we would like to pay tribute to our late co-editor, Themistocles Hoetis aka George P Solomos; poet, publisher, filmaker and writer who was one of the great freethinkers of the 20th century.

It was he who encouraged us to pitch into the discourse on the nascent internet and add our voices to the babble that now seems be like the white noise of a roaring river.

As the www is slowly brought under the reins of the thought police and swamped with commercial slime, we will aim to provide an intelligent alternative to the moderated infotainment and received opinions.

We welcome any comments that add to this debate.

Down the river of No Law . . .