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Tag: Global Capitalism

White Phosphorous War Crimes Connect Israel To Monsanto

Posted in Journalism, and MintPress News

Monsanto Corporation, the agribusiness giant best known for its pesticides and genetically-modified crops, also manufactured white phosphorous for the U.S. government over at least the past 20 years. Used in incendiary military weapons, the United States sold white phosphorous-based weapons to Israel, which used those weapons to commit brutal war crimes against Palestinians living in Gaza in 2009.

White phosphorous is created from phosphorous through industrial processes — it is not a naturally occurring substance. Exposure can cause severe and often fatal burns, or other complications such as organ failure, with even survivors suffering from long-term health effects.

In addition to its use in weapons, white phosphorous is also used to create phosphoric acid, a key ingredient in some fertilizers, which likely explains why Monsanto would manufacture the substance.

At one point, Monsanto was the only U.S.-based firm manufacturing the substance. This, of course, caught the military’s attention.

Zim Shipping “On The Ropes” In Oakland As Activists Prepare To Block The Boat Again

Posted in Journalism, and MintPress News

After multiple Block The Boat actions, even opponents of the blockade movement admit that Zim Integrated Shipping Services, Israel’s largest maritime cargo corporation, is on the defensive.

The next in this series of direct actions, which attempt to prevent Zim shipping vessels from unloading at U.S. ports in a show of support for Palestine, was scheduled to take place on the morning of Oct. 25. But Block The Boat organizers announced via Twitter that Zim Beijing, the latest vessel due in Oakland, California, haddelayed its arrival.

There’s a long history of unions and activists collaborating to blockade business at the Port of Oakland, but the movement has spread in recent months. Attempts to prevent unloading, with varying degrees of success, have also occurred at the Ports of Long Beach, Seattle, Vancouver and Tampa Bay. There are signs that Zim may soon abandon Oakland entirely or may already be in the process of doing so.

In addition to the costs Zim incurs as a result of these actions, organizers suggest these actions damage the company’s reputation in international shipping circles just as it attempts to cement alliances with other similar corporations.

Exposing Breitbart’s Lies At ALEC 41

Posted in Journalism, and MintPress News

In his recent article “Code Pink Stages Mini Protest at ALEC National Conference,” Breitbart.com’s California correspondent Jon Fleischman fabricates an encounter with an activist, erases a full day of anti-corporate protest, and makes a major source of corporate corruption in American state politics seem like a benign force for social good — all in just 250 words.

ALEC is the American Legislative Exchange Council, which has helped corporations and rich private investors pass conservative legislation for over 40 years. The legislation is written by the corporations, then passed by conservative state legislators selected and groomed by the group. The group has faced increasing criticism and protest in recent years, especially since the 2011 publication of the Center for Media and Democracy’s ALECexposed.org, a site with hundreds of these model bills and a partial membership list of the organization. Several corporate members have dropped out of the group under this pressure.

Among other policies, ALEC lobbies for the privatization of education and police and undermines laws that encourage the use of renewable energy. It also crafted the Stand Your Ground legislation that may have contributed to the death of Trayvon Martin and the acquittal of his killer, George Zimmerman.

Fleischman describes seeing a small group of protesters led by CODEPINK Dallas outside the cowboy-themed restaurant Eddie Deen’s Ranch, where ALEC held a kick-off dinner on the first night of its 41st national conference. Since the article features a photo of the group from inside the restaurant’s property, it’s clear that Fleischman was present on the night of July 30, 2014. But the rest departs significantly from reality.

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