Saturday, September 21, 2019

Kashmir & Jammu: Journalists Targets of Indian Authorities' Media Blackout

Stopped, Beaten, Prevented From Working: Everyday Troubles of the J&K Journalist

by Mudasir Ahmad - The Wire

September 18, 2019

Journalists, already among those whose work suffers the most in any siege, have now been facing the most resistance to their work.

Shahid Khan - Photo: The Wire

Srinagar - Shahid Khan shudders as he recalls the September 7 incident when he was beaten up by a group of policemen while covering Muharram processions in the Rainawari locality of Srinagar.

“I was among six photojournalists covering the event. Suddenly the escort of a senior police officer arrived at the spot and started beating us,” said Khan who works with the Jammu-based daily, Reporter North. 

“I was thrashed by a policeman who used his cane for at least five minutes. He kept telling me ‘why do you go out to shoot events, you create problems for us’,” said Khan.
“They kept beating me and didn’t listen to a single word.”

Shielding the Messenger: Cory Morningstar & the Machine Behind Greta Thunberg

In Defense of Cory Morningstar & “Manufacturing for Consent”

by Hiroyuki Hamada - OffGuardian

September 20, 2019

Good investigative journalism doesn’t only reveal hidden mechanisms of our time; it also exposes those who refuse to confront the mechanisms.

Remember when the late Bruce Dixon courageously and cogently called Bernie Sanders “a sheep dog candidate”? Remember when Eva Bartlett, Vanessa Beeley and others truly stood with Syrian people in opposing the western intervention? I do.

Those who could not face the reality came up with all sorts of profanities and ill conceived theories to demonize the messengers.

Cory Morningstar has been a dedicated environmental activist with a sound track record, who has closely worked with various NGOs. 

Hiroyuki Hamada is an artist. Exhibiting widely
in gallery and non-commercial settings alike

Friday, September 20, 2019

Exemplifying America's Moral and Intellectual Wasteland: Reuters & Jack Ryan

Reuters Can’t Find US Critics to Question Amazon’s Anti-Venezuela Propaganda 

by Joe Emersberger - FAIR

September 18, 2019

A line from the trailer for Jack Ryan, an Amazon TV drama whose second season streams on November 1, is: “A nuclear Venezuela…. You will not hear about it on the news, ’cause we’ll already be dead.”

The trailer implies that Venezuela is going through the “greatest humanitarian crisis in history” because it buys weapons from “the Russians.” Of course.

“It would fit a pattern,” says the Jack Ryan character, a CIA operative played by John Krasinski, who’s better known as Jim Halpert, the likeable paper salesman in The Office.

My favorite reaction to the premise of this upcoming Jack Ryan season came from US historian Gary Alexander:

"No matter how cynical you might be about propagandistic American media, you are not prepared for how much watching this trailer is like snorting 100% pure John Bolton."

Thursday, September 19, 2019

A Fightback Resource Guide for BC Communities Facing Government Enforced Mass Destruction of Forested Watersheds, Old Growth & Rainforests

Mass Destruction of Forested Watersheds, Old Growth & Rainforests Means Loss of Four Pillars of Life, Community Resilience and the Greatest Tool for Climate Regulation

by Kootenay Watershed Protectors

September 10th, 2019


Mass Destruction of Forested Watersheds - Is Putting Life At Risk

Sep 10,2019

Pursuing justice for the protection of communities, life and life support systems and the case of Argenta Johnson's Landing Watershed slated for clear-cut and what locals are doing about it.

Spain's Press Freedoms in Precipitous Decline

Spain has experienced an unprecedented decline in press freedom, says PDLI

by Jane Whyatt and Frederic Krull - ECPMF

September 19, 2019

Hooded demonstrators have attacked TV journalists covering the Catalonia national day demonstrations which attracted more than 500,000 people in support of independence for the autonomous region.

The Spanish journalists’ unions Agrupación de Periodistas de CCOO (FSC-CCOO) and Federación de Sindicatos de Periodistas (FeSP) condemned these acts.

Their statement rejects,

"All types of behaviours that seek to coerce, harass, intimidate and condition the work of journalists, violating the fundamental right to freedom of expression and the right of citizens to receive free and truthful information."

      Yolanda Qintada. Photo: Dani Gago
         License CC_BY_SA 

Catalonia is not the only flashpoint. Spain’s current political stalemate is matched by paralysis in the state of press freedom. There is a Gag Law, criminal defamation, lack of access to information, as well as online harassment of reporters and little protection for whistleblowers. These aspects are all causing problems.

As noted in the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom’s (ECPMF) submission to the United Nations Human Rights Periodic Review on Spain, this situation creates a chilling effect.

ECPMF’s partner organisation in Madrid, Plateforma en Defensa de Libertad de Información (PDLI), is concerned. In a frank interview with ECPMF, the PDLI Co-ordinator Yolanda Quintada (pictured) admits that conditions for press freedom have not improved in recent years – in fact she believes they have never been worse.

Saving Julian

"Please save my life": Julian Assange in prison

by Annissa Warsame  - ECPMF


Cell Number 37, ‘Britain’s Guantanamo Bay’ – a single occupancy cell, furnished sparsely with a plastic chair, metal bed and steel toilet. For over 150 days this has been Julian Assange’s residence, whether he likes it or not. And a judge has ruled today, he is to remain there even after his jail sentence is over.

Swiftly after his asylum status was stripped by the Ecuadorian government, the British authorities sentenced Assange to fifty weeks in prison, for violating his bail.

The maximum sentence being fifty-two weeks and the typical sentence being none and a fine.

With his arrest, Assange was moved to HMP Belmarsh, a maximum-security prison in South London. Belmarsh during the early millennium was known as ‘Britain’s Guantanamo Bay’ for its foreign detainees, held without trial.

When you visit the prison, you are immediately struck by its fortress-like exterior. With its water-stained concrete perimeter walls, enumerable CCTV cameras and floodlights.

             Professor Nils Melzer

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Gorilla Radio with Chris Cook, Kootenay Watershed Protectors, Nils Melzer, Janine Bandcroft Sept. 19, 2019

This Week on GR

by C. L. Cook -

September 19th, 2019

It's clear those in this province concerned about local environment have no-one in government federally, provincially, and more often than not at the civic level, to turn to; when corporate and citizen interests clash, here money always wins. This seemingly unalterable law of British Columbia's political nature has inspired some of the polity to fight back, one endangered wildlife habitat, threatened forest stand, and imperiled watershed at a time.

The Argenta/Johnson's Landing is an irreplaceable piece of the West Kootenay ecological puzzle threatened with utter destruction by the business as usual extractivist economic prerogative.

It is, as environmental activist and 'Camp Caribou' defender Brock Snyder says, "yet another in a long line of forested watersheds slated for destruction in BC, [...] putting life at risk."

Listen. Hear.

Environmental Scientist, grandmother, and activist, Mona Southron reminds, we clever humans are, "now at a point where we can create massive destruction of living systems and unrivaled suffering, or [...] the restoration of a thriving world worth living in..."

Brock Snyder, Mona Southron, and economist, activist, and World traveler, Jessica Dawn-Ogden, principals of the citizen-led Kootenay Watershed Protectors, on standing to protect what cannot be sacrificed in the first half.

And; next week imprisoned journalist and publisher, Julian Assange was set at last for release from London's notorious Belmarsh Prison, his time for "breach of bail" served, but last week district judge Vanessa Baraitser quashed any hope of that, saying, "You have been produced today because your sentence of imprisonment is about to come to an end. When that happens your remand status changes from a serving prisoner to a person facing extradition."

And with that, Julian Assange stands to face years of detention while the wheels of judicial process grind slowly on.

Nils Melzer is the United Nations Special Rapporteur on torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. Melzer visited Assange in May and subsequently issued a public call for Assange's immediate release, along with stinging rebukes of both his current jailors in Britain and those in America who would be next if their extradition petition is granted.

Nils Melzer and the continued call for Julian Assange's release in the second half.

And; Victoria-based activist and long-time Gorilla Radio contributor, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour to bring us up to speed with some of what's good to be gotten up in and around our town in the coming week.

Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Thursday between 11-Noon Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at:  He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, Check out the GR blog at:

Monday, September 16, 2019

Breaking Assange; Psychologist Outlines 'The Psychology of Getting Julian Assange'

Clinical psychologist Lissa Johnson: They are trying to break Assange “physically and psychologically”

by Oscar Grenfell - WSWS

28 August 2019

Australian clinical psychologist Lissa Johnson has been an outspoken defender of Julian Assange, writing extensively on the grave implications of his persecution for democratic rights and freedom of speech.

Johnson explained to the WSWS that she “writes about the psychology of politics and social issues.” She has a background in media studies and sociology, and a PhD in the psychology of manipulating reality-perception.

Earlier this year, Johnson wrote an extensive five-part investigative series titled “The Psychology of Getting Julian Assange,” published on the New Matilda website. Johnson provided the following responses to a series of questions from the World Socialist Web Site earlier this week.

Free Finally The World's Most Important Political Prisoner

The World’s Most Important Political Prisoner

by Craig Murray

September 15, 2019

We are now just one week away from the end of Julian Assange’s uniquely lengthy imprisonment for bail violation. He will receive parole from the rest of that sentence, but will continue to be imprisoned on remand awaiting his hearing on extradition to the USA – a process which could last several years.

At that point, all the excuses for Assange’s imprisonment which so-called leftists and liberals in the UK have hidden behind will evaporate. There are no charges and no active investigation in Sweden, where the “evidence” disintegrated at the first whiff of critical scrutiny. He is no longer imprisoned for “jumping bail”.

The sole reason for his incarceration will be the publishing of the Afghan and Iraq war logs leaked by Chelsea Manning, with their evidence of wrongdoing and multiple war crimes.

A Plea to Intercede: Assange Implores UN Special Rapporteur "Please, Save My Life!"

Julian Assange asks UN special rapporteur to ‘Please save my life’

by Personal Liberty News Desk 

September 16, 2019

Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, resides in cell No. 37 in “Britain’s Guantanamo Bay.” His cell is a single-occupancy cell, “furnished” with a plastic chair, a metal bed and steel toilet. It’s been Assange’s residence for more than 150 days. Last week a British judge ruled he’s to remain there even after he jail sentence is over.

The crime for which Assange is being punished is a bail violation. He’s been sentenced to 40 weeks in prison. The maximum sentence for the crime in Britain is 52 weeks. Typically, British bail violators get no time and a small fine.

Assange, scheduled to be extradited to the U.S. for telling the truth, may not live until the end of his sentence, according to Professor Nils Melzer, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture.

According to the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom, Assange’s lawyers convinced Melzer to investigate the conditions Assange is living under after preventing “credible evidence” of “ill-treatment.”