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Jeremy Corbyn on freeing Julian Assange, the working class, Brazil, Peru & ending Ukraine War

Democracy Now!   In Washington, D.C., human rights and free speech advocates gather today for the Belmarsh Tribunal, focused on the imprisonment of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Assange has been languishing for close to four years in the harsh Belmarsh prison in London while appealing extradition to the United States on espionage charges. If convicted, Assange could face up to 175 years in jail for publishing documents that exposed war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan. Five major news organizations that once partnered with WikiLeaks recently called on the Biden administration to drop charges against Assange.    British MP and former Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, who is in Washington, D.C., to participate in the Belmarsh Tribunal, speaks about Assange and freedom of the press. We also speaks about the state of leftism around the globe, from labor rights in the U.K. and Europe to the war in Ukraine, to political unrest in Brazil and Peru. 

January 21, 2010: The day corporate dictatorship destroyed the last remnants of US Democracy

globinfo freexchange     As we described many times in this blog, corporate power grew rapidly since the early 70s with the rise of neoliberalism and its subsequent establishment as the dominant culture, especially in the West.  In the motherland of neoliberalism, the United States, corporations essentially legalized corruption in politics during the 70s in order to capture the entire political system and put it under their complete control. As David Harvey describes in his book A Brief History of Neoliberalism :                          The supposedly ‘progressive’ campaign finance laws of 1971 in effect legalized the financial corruption of politics. A crucial set of Supreme Court decisions began in 1976 when it was first established that the right of a corporation to make unlimited money contributions to political parties and political action committees was protected under the First Amendment guaranteeing the rights of individuals (in this instance corporations) to freedom of speec

Iran’s unrest triggers explosion of fake news

Some of the most incendiary accusations made against Iran’s government by corporate media, celebrity influencers and Western leaders in the past months are little more than fabrications. And most remain uncorrected.   by Setareh Sadeqi and Christopher Weaver   Part 1   Protests in Iran that ostensibly began as a reaction to the death of a woman in police custody in September 2022 have prompted unprecedented international opposition to its government, not only from the usual Western, Israeli and Saudi suspects, but from celebrity social media influencers with no previous record of commenting on Iranian affairs. Iran is now the target of a carefully coordinated information war with a single goal to drive international support for regime change by any means – whether through sanctions, armed insurrection, military intervention, or some combination of the three. Before a largely uncritical audience of billions of admiring Instagram followers who do not speak Farsi and have little to no und

Chief prosecutor puts Greece’s rule of law to the test

by Sarantis Michalopoulos   Part 2 - A blow to the rule of law   His opinion triggered strong reactions from all opposition parties and justice stakeholders. A common point of all reactions to the prosecutor’s opinion is that it essentially blocks ADAE’s controls, intimidates and hinders the investigation of the wiretapping scandal. “ The opinion of Mr Ntogiakos is a flagrant violation of the Constitution. No law and no opinion can invalidate the Constitution, and the mission of the ADAE defined there to control and ensure the privacy of communications, ” main opposition Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras (EU Left) said in a statement. Xenofon Contiades, professor and president of the Center for European Constitutional Law, slammed the prosecutor, saying the “ legal community will strongly oppose the unthinkable interference of the prosecutor in the constitutionally and legislatively enshrined mission of ADAE ”. The Greek government said it “ fully respects ” justice and blamed Tsipras for c

France hit by nationwide strikes as unions fight Macron’s pension reform

French train drivers, teachers and refinery workers were among those who walked off their jobs on Thursday (19 January) in a nationwide day of strikes against government plans to raise the retirement age by two years to 64.   by with Reuters  Part 1 The strikes, and protests expected across the country, are a major test for President Emmanuel Macron, who says his pension reform plan, which opinion polls show is hugely unpopular, is vital to ensure the system does not go bust. The challenge for unions is to transform opposition to the reform – and anger over a cost-of-living crisis – into a mass social protest which would eventually force the government to change tack. “ We need a lot of people to join the protests, ” Laurent Berger, head of France’s largest union, CFDT, told BFM TV. “ People are against this reform … we need to show it (in the streets). ” He and other union leaders, expected to announce more strikes and protests in the evening, said Thursday was just the b

Richest 1% took 2/3rds of global wealth since 2020 - twice as much as 99% of population earned

Geopolitical Economy Report   In 2020 and 2021, the wealthiest 1% of the world's population sucked up nearly two-thirds of all new wealth - six times greater than the wealth made by the poorest 90%. Yet while billionaires get richer, poverty is increasing, Oxfam warns. 

How Western sanctions blow back, hurting Europe, deepening Asian integration

Western sanctions led Russia to greatly increase trade with Asia, while devastating Europe’s economy. The US tech war against China is damaging its own industry.   by Renate Bridenthal  Part 2 - ‘Extending’ Russia into Ukraine At the moment, the U.S. is in a proxy war with Russia, with Ukraine in the military forefront. Before that, and alongside it now, is a running war of sanctions. The longest cause was the rise to power of Vladimir Putin, who restored Russia’s economic power and sovereignty by undoing some of the predatory effects of Russia’s privatization following U.S.-supported “shock therapy.” An early “Western” strategy to prevent a return of Russia as a great power was to bring many of its bordering states in Eastern Europe into NATO. Ukraine would be the last piece in what Russia perceives to be a military front of potential aggression. Whatever the outcome of that fight will be, sanctions are likely to continue. The U.S. first sanctioned 60 Russian individuals in 2012 with

NATO leader admits US and NATO are sacrificing Ukraine to bleed Russia

The Jimmy Dore Show   It’s become relatively routine now for powerful individuals within the NATO alliance to make statements revealing the truth about the Ukraine War – specifically that NATO is not waging this war for the benefit of the Ukrainian people, but rather to weaken Russia as a global power and funnel endless taxpayer dollars into the pockets of weapons manufacturers and energy interests. The latest statement comes from former UK Defense Staff head of operations Edward Stringer, who told the Wall Street Journal that the West is intentionally funding Ukraine to prolong the war.    Related: Confirmed: US imperialists wanted to drag Russia into a war with Ukraine since at least 2019

‘World War 3 has already started’ between US and Russia/China, argues French scholar

A prominent French intellectual has written a book arguing that the United States is already waging World War Three against Russia and China. He also warned that Europe has become a kind of imperial “protectorate”, which has little sovereignty and is essentially controlled by the US.   Emmanuel Todd is a widely respected anthropologist and historian in France. In 2022, Todd published a book titled “The Third World War Has Started” (“La Troisième Guerre mondiale a commencé” in French). At the moment, it is only available in Japan. But Todd outlined the main arguments he made in the book in a French-language interview with the major newspaper Le Figaro , conducted by the journalist Alexandre Devecchio. According to Todd, the proxy war in Ukraine is “existential” not only for Russia, but also for the United States. The US “ imperial system ” is weakening in much of the world, he observed, but this is leading Washington to “ strengthen its hold on its initial protectorates ”: Europe and Ja

China pushes de-dollarization with gold reserves, Argentina yuan currency swap deal

Advancing global de-dollarization, China’s central bank is boosting its gold reserves while signing currency swap deals in yuan with countries like Argentina, encouraging the use of renminbi instead of US dollars.   by Ben Norton  Part 2 - China’s central bank increases its gold reserves In December 2022, the People’s Bank of China publicly disclosed for the first time in three years that it was increasing the share of gold in its foreign-exchange reserves. Bloomberg noted at the time that “ China’s purchases may be part of a plan to diversify its reserves away from the dollar “. In January 2023, Bloomberg followed up indicating that the People’s Bank of China had again boosted its gold reserves. The media outlet speculated that Russia is filling its reserves with gold as well. China and Russia are not alone. Bloomberg reported that central banks around the world are buying gold, reaching a record of close to 400 tons in the third fiscal quarter of 2022, compared to 241 tons in the