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US Imperialism

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    Childhood lost and found: Ten years gone Francesca Fiorentini September 11, 2011

    It always seemed like an absurd exercise to recount where one was on 9/11. Some way to personalize the moment or get closer to the action. Maybe it’s just a way to make something that has been so filtered and retold, so shadowy yet simultaneously sensationalized, feel real. Sadly, the task of remembering is difficult without images of some patriotic red, white, and blue CNN graphic coming to mind. We have been told how to feel about the event (and those that followed) for so long, we rarely get a moment to do so. I choose to remember the day, and the horrors that have happened since, with this brief recollection of the moment that I became an adult.

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    Healing the trauma of post-9/11 racism one story (and melody) at a time Sonny Singh September 11, 2011

    photo by Renaud Philippephoto by Renaud PhilippeOnce the term terrorist attack was all over the headlines on September  11, 2001, something inside my 21-year-old, fresh-out-of-college self was dreadfully certain of what was coming next. Before I even had a chance to begin processing and mourning the horrific loss of thousands of lives in New York City, I was getting calls from even the most apolitical of my extended family members, urging me to be careful and “keep a low profile,” to not leave my house unless I absolutely had to.

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    Demilitarization as Rehumanization Clare Bayard March 11, 2011

    The antiwar movement never died. The movement has shifted to the work of long-term, community-based organizing to mount a comprehensive challenge to US militarism. This work is growing inside grassroots movements led by veterans, immigrants, queers, and low-income communities of color. Everywhere domestic militarization burns to the bone, people are fighting for a different future. The mass street marches of 2003 sought to preemptively raise the political cost of the Iraq war. We always knew that beyond those marches we would have to confront the real human cost if the wars moved ahead.

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    The War on Pakistanis Qalandar Bux Memon April 1, 2010

    When empires move in on a country, they do not aim to salvage people from oppressive power structures of the native country, but to further their own interests. Pakistan, like other recently decolonized countries, suffers from a long history of colonial rule and oppressive power struggles. We can trace such structures to the Mughals and see their solidity under the British. The British managed to create in Pakistan a ruling elite linked to empire in desire and interest, as they did in other Third World countries.

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    Palestine, Haiti, and the Politics of Aid: “Disaster Relief” vs Sustainability and Self-Determination Nada Elia, Shana griffin, and Alisa Bierria April 1, 2010

    On January 12, 2010, a massive earthquake struck Haiti, killing an estimated 230,000 people, injuring over 300,000, and effectively destroying the capital city of Port-Au-Prince and its surrounding towns and cities, while displacing and rendering homeless nearly 1.5 million people. Almost immediately, international aid and charity organizations, individuals, faith-based and community groups, and national governments mobilized food, medicine, clothes, services, and money.

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    “Our Dead Died for Us to Live:” A Conversation with Patrick Elie Avi Lewis April 1, 2010

    Patrick Elie was Minister of Defense under Jean-Bertrand Aristide, and is currently an advisor to Haiti’s President René Préval. Just over two weeks after the earthquake that killed more than 200,000 people on January 12, 2010, Al Jazeera English’s Avi Lewis spoke with Elie in Pétionville, a suburb of Port-au-Prince.

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    Haiti and the Human Made Disaster Sameer Dossani April 1, 2010

    On January 12, 2010 Haiti was rocked by a massive (MMS 7.0) earthquake. The epicenter of the earthquake was not far from some of the major population centers of Haiti, including the capital, Port-au-Prince and the city of Jacmel. As of January 28, the confirmed death toll is 170,000, though that number is expected to continue to rise.

    The current outpouring of support for those who survived the earthquake and now find themselves without shelter, food or clean water is much needed. It is worth bearing in mind, however, that the January earthquake is the latest in a long list of disasters that have marred Haiti’s history, most of them caused by human activity as opposed to natural forces. For those of us in the US it’s also worth paying attention to the bigger picture of suffering in Haiti, as our government—and by extension all of us—have been its primary cause.

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    The Shi'a Rise Up Rami El-Amine June 1, 2004

    "What is striking is how much has changed in a week. No one can talk about the Sunni Triangle anymore. No one can seriously talk about Sunni-Shia fragmentation or civil war. The occupation cannot talk about small bands of resistance. Now it is a popular rebellion and it has spread."
    -- Wamid Nadhmi, a political science professor at Baghdad University

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    Imperialisms in South Asia Sahar Shafqat April 1, 2010

    In November 2009, the Pakistani Army began a major assault in South Waziristan, believed to be the stronghold of the largest of the Pakistani Taliban factions. In a stroke of genius, the Army dumped thousands of leaflets one day ahead of its assault as part of a public relations effort. The leaflets bore a letter directly from the head of the Pakistani Army, General Kayani, to the Mehsud tribe which lives in South Waziristan. The letter said: “The [military] operation is not meant to target the valiant and patriotic Mehsud tribes but [is] aimed at ridding them of the elements who have destroyed peace in the region.” In order to clear up any confusion as to whom the letter was from, the Army helpfully included a picture of General Kayani on the leaflets.

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    Gaza Freedom Marchers Demand End to Blockade, Declare Support for BDS Hena Ashraf April 1, 2010

    At the hands of Israel, the Gaza Strip has become the world’s largest open-air prison, trapping 1.5 million Palestinians inside its borders. The Israeli blockade of Gaza began in June 2007, after Hamas defeated US-backed Fatah forces who were attempting to carry out a coup in Gaza. The blockade was an extension of the economic sanctions that began in March 2006 in response to Hamas winning parliamentary elections, and has essentially closed Gaza off to the outside world.

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