'US builds secret drone bases in Africa'
United States is to build a series of new secret drone bases in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, in an attempt to target suspected militants in Somalia and Yemen.
'US builds secret drone bases in Africa'
United States is to build a series of new secret drone bases in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, in an attempt to target suspected militants in Somalia and Yemen.
By Nick Pakpoor
Published on Jun 30, 2015
My name is Nick Pakpoor, and I am the founder of Nikpress. Nikpress is an independent news media launched in 2009. I am a senior political analyst with decades of political experience. I was born in one of the northern provinces of Iran, and have lived for more than three decades in various countries all over Europe.
As a former political activist, I was forced to seek refuge in a democratic country to escape persecution. Currently, I hold a Swedish citizenship, the one and only. Since my escape, I have consistently been banned from traveling to my country of birth by the Islamic state of Velayat-e Faqih, or the so-called Islamic Republic of Iran.
Nikpress takes pride in being an independent and non-commercial news and analysis media. Furthermore, Nikpress has consistently striven to resist against any influence by government or corporate interests. Nikpress is a reliable source for the unbiased dissemination of information, and in that sense, differentiates itself from mainstream media or government-owned news agencies.
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News & Politics
سخنی سنجیده و سگالنده با ایرانیان
درست است که سیطره سبُعانه و سفاکانهٔ ستون پنجمی از سوسماران سمی ـ صحرائی تازیان، مُهر و سمبول متعفن و مستعجن فرهنگ مکاری ـ ملائی خود را بر پیکر ستبر و ستین ایرانیان، تبهکارانه و تازیانه، تاتو کرده است. واین هم درست است که سالهاست که غرور ملی جایش را به غروب ملی داده است تا جائیکه صلابت و صلاحیت دیرینهٔ پارسایانه اش بطور جدی و جلادانه لکه دار و لگد مال شده است ولی تجربهٔ تاریخی به کرات و مرات نشان داده است که اکر ملت ایرن مبداء و محرک مقصدش را وارستگی و وارهانندگی ملی بر پایه پلاتفرم استقلال به همراه استقامت و ایستادنی اُستادانه انتخاب کند، بدون هیچ گونه تردید و توهمی خواهد توانست یکبار برای همیشه به این مذلت و مسکنت مزدوری یعنی تمکین و تملق فرهنگی به مثابه طاعت و اطاعت در مقابل مناره متعفن و مظهر مناسک منحوس تازیان، چه در ضمیر و چه در زمین آریائیان خط قرمز بُطلان بکشد.
تاریخ اسپانیا در زدودن و زباله انداختن زبان و زیان فرهنگ مکاری ـ مسلمانی تازیان بهترین و بهین ترین گواه خدشه ناپذیر این مدعاست!
مطیح محض مشتی ملا و مفتی مخُلا و مرتج تازی التبار شدن در هیچ برهه ای از زمان در هیچ جائی از جهان نه تنها افتخار و احترامی به ارمغان نیآورده است بلکه مقام و مرتبهٔ آن ملت را رذیلانه توسط روضه خوانان و رجم گران یعنی رجاله گان دین به رهزنگاه و نیرنگاه رهسپار ساخته است.
بیائید دردخفاء و خلوت خود خردمندانه و خلاقانه نه خائنانه و خاسرانه یعنی مردانه و مزدیسانه، بجای کُرنش گری و کمر خم کنی، کُنش گر و کنکاش گری کمانگیر و کلنجار گر باشیم تا قلب این قبیلهٔ نوکران و نوچه های نعلین پوش تازیان را نشانه رویم تا بساط و بنیاد این تفکر بادیه نشینان و بربر زادگان را از بیق و بُن برآندازیم!
باردیگر چشم به انتظار مُنجی و مُعجزه گر یا میرغضبی همچون هلاکو خان مغول نشستن تا ما ایرانیان را از شّر این شرطه های شرعی ـ عربی المعتصم بالله ئی یا المعتصم ملائی، نجات بدهد، سزنده و سزاوار سرزمین ستُرگ آریائیان نمی باشد.
سرانجام در واپسین واگویه فرجام شناسانه، البته با مدد و متد اسکاتا لوجیک منطقی یعنی به پشتوانهٔ پیشنه تاریخی و به پرتو پیمایش در پراتیک و تجربه، می توان اینچینین ادعا و استدلال کرد، تازمانیکه پوران و پورمندان،پهلوانان و پارتیزانان، فرهیختگان و فرزانگان ایرانی ـ آریائی، پارسایانه پوشنه و پوشش این پاشیدگی و پوسیدگی، پراگندگی و پریشان حالی فرهنگ تخدیر و تحقیر، گدائی و گمراهی، کرخت و گژهی، کلب و گور پرستی، گوسفندی و گردن خم کنی،نزر و نیاز، نماز و نوکری به دُژگاه یا دفن گاه های کعبه و کربلا، نهاوند و نجف را به همراه طواف طوطی وار طوایف طُلاب، عمامه و عراب را با رجعت به رنسانس و رستاخیزی رهاننده یعنی با بازگشت یا فراشکردی فرازمندانه به فرهنگ دیرینهٔ آریائی ـ آهورائی، این عاملان اصلی رذالت و رخوت ملی ـ میهنی را به کرانه و کناره زباله زمان، پرتاب نکنند یا بقول ولتر: مذهب خود را به بسان پول رایج کشورشان تحویل نگیرند تا ابدالدهر در چنبره وابستگی و واماندگی، اسارت و ایستائی با اتیکت عفریت عبودیت در زیر سلطهٔ سفاکانه و تسلط تبهکارنهٔ این ختنه شدگان خبیث تناسل و تفکر، تازی الاتبار باقی خواهند ماند.
پروندهٔ دو امام تازی. حسن و حسین
براینکه درک و داوری درستی از دژُنام گویان و دژُآگاهان، دغلکاران و دلقکان، دعانویسان و دروغ پردازان دین، یعنی پیروان پژوین و پشماگند تاریک بین و تازیک اندیش داشته باشیم. باید با سویج یا سُنبه و سُوندی سُنباننده به سودن و سُفتن در ترازوی تاریخ، بمثابهٔ ساینتیفیک هیستوری البته با مدد و متد سافیس تیکیت و فیلوسوفیک آنرا مورد کنُش و کنکاش قرار دهیم تا در غرقاب غبار غسل و غساله های غداره بند توضیح المسائل نویس ها و دعانویس های دیوان تفتیش عقاید شرطه های شرعی ـ عربی، غرق نشویم.
وقتی که ترکان قشری قزلباش به سرکردکی شاه اسماعیل صفوی یک شبه با دروغ و دغلکاری و با داخل کردن یا وارد کردن کاروانی از آخوند و انگل، اهریمن و اجنه، رجاله و روضه خوان، راهزن و رمه بان، رند و رمال، جاهل و جمل سوار، جادوگر و جنبل باف از جبل عامل لبنان تا عراق از شام تا یمن و بحرین، توانست یکبار دیگر همچون سلف خود سعدوقاص، مردم ایران را با زور و ذوالفقار قاریان قبح و قمه کشان قزلباس، مجبور و محکوم به پذیرش و گردن نهادن قلادهٔ غلامی قصابان جدیدی از تبار وحشیان تبهکار تازی، بنام شیعه اثناعشری ـ عربی را بجای تسنن ترکی ـ تازی وادار سازد. تا بدین وسیله شبهٔ شوم بساط سیطره تحجر و تعزیه گری، زنجیر زنی و قمه زنی، سینه زنی و سیه روزی،آشوبگری و آشوراسالاری،شیخ شنیع و شام غریبانی را به همراه کارخانهٔ مسخ و مهدیه گری را با جهولت و جلادی، تمام وکمال در سراسر آسمان ایران زمین بگستراند
ـ برعکس ادعای آستان بوس ها و اختابوس های رجزخوان و رجاله های رذالت پیشهٔ روضه خوان و رجم گر آثناعشری ـ عربی حاکم بر ایران، بیائید دمی ، کمی هم به افادهٔ افاضات یا آراجیف ابتذال گونه، پژوین و پلشت ابا عبدالله یعنی امام الحسین علیه العرب تازی را از زبان ضریس بن عبدالملک بشنوید که می گوید: از ابا عبدالله امام الحسین علیه السلام بشنیدم که فریش و فرمایش می کرد که " ما همه از تبار قمه کشان قریشیم و پیروان عرب تازی و دُشمنان قسم خورده عجم هستیم، واضع و واعظ است که هر عرب تازی بهتر و بهین تر و بالاتر و برتر از هر عجم می باشد و هر عجم فرومایه تر و فرودست تر از هر عرب تازی می باشد. باز همو مرتکب فضیلت فخارانه می شود و در ادامه می فرماید که باید ایرانیان را به مدینه آورد و زنانشان را برای زفاف و ذکاة فروخت و مردانشان را به بردگی و بندگی عرب ها مجبور کرد" (1 ) نقل و قول این مطالب: سقیته البحار و مدینه الاحکام و آثار. تالیف حاج شیخ عباس قمی در کتاب شیعه گری نوشته مسعود انصاری صفحه 54
"حتی اسناد تاریخی تصدیق شده و تائید شده بسیاری گواه بر این مدعای مستند و موثق می باشد که برای ترور و تصرف طبرستان در زمان خلافت خاسر و خبیث، خناس و خدعه عثمان عرب، جنگ سختی به سرداری و سر جلادی سعیدبن عاص در آن منطقه درگرفت که در نتیجهٔ شهامت و رشادت مردم ناکام ماند، از جمله سرکردگان و سرگردن زنان این ساطور بدست عرب، حسن و حسین، فرزندان علی ابی طالب، قمه کش و قاتل قوم و قبیله بنی قریظه بودند "
(2) برای صحت و صحیح بودن صرافانه این ادعای گوینده مراجعه شود به تاریخ طبری جلد پنجم، صفحه 2116 ، فتوح البلدان صفحه 183 ، مختصرالبلدان صفحه 152
البته در بسیاری از کتب تاریخی عرب و اروپائی به وفور و وثوق آمده است که از بدو تجاوز و تصرف ایران توسط تازیان تبهکار، همیشه تبعیض نژادی به همراه تعرض و تعقیب، تهدید و تعزیر، یکی از شگردهای شقی و شیادانه، شیطان صفتانه و شعبده بازانهٔ شمشیرکشان شرعی بوده است که چه بطور مستقیم و چه غیر مستقیم توسط ستون پنجمی بنام شیاطین الفقها یا فقیه الشیاطین تازی تبار علیه ایرانیان اعمال می شد.
تا جائیکه تازیان مسلمان بری تحقیر و تمسخر، توهین و تکفیر ایرانیان، می گفتند که سه چیز در اسلام تازیان وجود دارد که نماز یعنی این نماد نوکری و نوچه گری به دُژگاه یا درگاه سوسمارزادگان سمی - صحرائی قمه کشان قریشی را باطل می کند: یکی سگ و دومی اُلاغ و سومی ایرانی میباشد.
1 ـ نقل و قول این مطالب: سقیته البحار و مدینه الاحکام و آثار. تالیف حاج شیخ عباس قمی در کتاب شیعه گری نوشته مسعود انصاری صفحه
2ـ برای صحت و صحیح بودن صرافانه این ادعای گوینده مراجعه شود به تاریخ طبری جلد پنجم، صفحه 2116 ، فتوح البلدان صفحه 183 ، مختصرالبلدان صفحه 152
نوشتهٔ دکتر شجاع الدین شفا
Bosnia: Cradle of modern jihadism? BBC News
Published on Jul 4, 2015
20 years ago in the civil war in Bosnia, hundreds of Arab jihadists came to join Bosnian Muslims fighting against their neighbours the Serbs and Croats. Grouped into secret fighting units in Central Bosnia, this was the first time in centuries Jihad had been fought against a Western, Christian enemy. Two decades later Bosnia is still reaping the consequences. In the past month ISIS declared the Balkans the next front of Jihad - and in remote mountain villages extremists are flying the ISIS flag. Mark Urban returns to Bosnia and discovers how secular Bosnian society has been infiltrated by a militant Islamism which operates to this day.
Post-referendum Greece will change 'dramatically'
Published on Jul 3, 2015
Ahead of the referendum in Greece this Sunday, tensions have been building between the camp that intends to vote 'yes' and those determined to vote 'no'.
The Politics of Fear Ahead of Greek Referendum
Elite interests aim to keep Greece on the path of further austerity, say University of Greenwich's Ozlem Onaran and University of London's John Weeks - July 3, 2015
Ozlem Onaran is Professor of Economics at the University of Greenwich in the U.K. She regularly publishes research studies on globalization, income distribution, and business investment in publications such as the Cambridge Journal of Economics and Labour. She recently co-authored a major study for the International Labour Organization on the relative importance of decent wages versus high profits as an engine of economic growth in several countries throughout the world.
John Weeks is a professor emeritus of the University of London's School of Oriental and African Studies and author of Economics of the 1%: How Mainstream Economics Serves the Rich, Obscures Reality and Distorts Policy. His recent policy work includes a supplemental unemployment program for the European Union and advising the central banks of Argentina and Zambia.
The Politics of Fear Ahead of Greek ReferendumJESSICA DESVARIEUX, PRODUCER, TRNN: Welcome to the Real News Network. I'm Jessica Desvarieux in Baltimore.
The Greek finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis, says he'll resign if the Greek people vote yes on the national referendum set for July 5. The vote will decide whether the Greek people will accept the bailout terms offered by the Troika, which is made up of the European Central Bank, International Monetary Fund, and the European Commission.
Since the Greek prime minister called for the referendum vote, Greece defaulted on a $1.8 billion payment to the IMF. European leaders have threatened to force Greece out of the Eurozone, and the ECB is signaling that the current emergency funding that it's providing to Greek banks is dependent on the referendum, a point critics of international creditors have called a scare tactic to get Greece to vote for the deal.
Now joining us to discuss all of this are our two guests. We have Ozlem Onaran, who is a member of the Debt Truth Committee on Public Debt in Greece, and a professor of workforce and economic development policy at the University of Greenwich. Also joining us is John Weeks. John is a Professor Emeritus at the University of London School of Oriental and African Studies.
Thank you both for joining us.
JOHN WEEKS, UNIV. OF LONDON: Thank you, glad to be here.
OZLEM ONARAN, UNIV. OF GREENWICH: Thanks for having us.
DESVARIEUX: So Ozlem, let's start with you so we can get a better understanding of a Greek exit, a potential Greek exit from the Euro. We hear from European leaders like German Chancellor Angela Merkel that a no vote will mean Greece will be forced to leave the Euro.
First of all, can the members of the ECB force another member out, legally?
ONARAN: There is no legal mechanism for doing that, but obviously the European Central Bank saw that the financial [affair] already back in February by cutting direct funding of the Greek banks. What they will do about emergency liquidity assistance to the Greek banks now after a no vote will be the most important determining factor here.
But there is no direct mechanism. The Greek government doesn't want to leave the Eurozone. They will therefore try to negotiate for an alternative program. And this means the ball will be in the corner of the European government.
And the political contagion of the resistance to austerity in Greece will open so many other avenues for popular mobilization across European countries that it will be very difficult to further this financial coup. And I'm thinking the opportunities are all open in front of the Greek people, after a no vote on Sunday evening, it will [inaud.] the European people on Monday.
DESVARIEUX: Okay. So let's enter the realm of speculation, and let's say it's Monday morning and we have a vote, John, and the Greek people decide to vote no on this bailout deal. Would you be in favor of a future Greek exit from the Euro by Syriza?
WEEKS: Before I do that let me just point out to everyone that this is an extraordinary event. I mean, a government has gone to its people to ask their advice on a major issue of policy, rather than saying, well, circumstances have changed and we'll push it through parliament.
Okay. This is a major event. This is a shock to the European system. This is particularly a shock to the Troika, which is very nondemocratic, to say the least.
So what will happen. Will it go out. I think if there is a no vote, then the Troika, particularly the German government will be absolutely ruthless and relentless. And I'm sure that the Greek government is prepared for that. They're prepared, they're prepared for the Germans to be ruthless. What they do then, I think it probably is--it will be necessary for the Greek government to take steps that involve issuing IOUs. Which are common enough, which has happened often enough. The problem will come if there is a run on the banks. Which I don't think there will be, but we can discuss that.
DESVARIEUX: Okay. So when you say issuing IOUs, to whom?
WEEKS: Well, so for example, when you get your hefty paycheck from the Real News, they pay it into your bank account. But--.
DESVARIEUX: Hefty, that's funny.
WEEKS: The same thing when I get my hefty, you know, pension fund payment. They'll continue to do the same thing. And the way they will fund it is, I assume, that they will borrow from the domestic banks and they will borrow from the Greek Central bank. So for a while it will look like nothing is happening. But in fact, something will be happening.
DESVARIEUX: Okay. Ozlem, you just heard John kind of lay out what he predicts might happen. What about you? Do you think a potential no vote would mean that Greece would have to consider at the very least exiting the Euro?
ONARAN: The question that the Greek government will start with is an alternative program for recovering reconstruction, for social recovery in Greece. So that's an alternative to austerity. They can only implement this program if at the same time they have a major write off of their debt.
Now, we have provided a report to the Hellenic parliament after they had set up the Truth Committee on Public Debt, that the current public debt of Greece is neither legitimate nor legal, nor sustainable. It's not sustainable from an economic point of view, but it's also not sustainable from a humanitarian point of view. And the lenders, the creditors, who have signed these loan agreements very well knew that these loans were not going to be used in favor of the Greek people. These were meant to bail out the private banks of Germany and France. They've successfully done that. They also from the start knew that this would lead to a major depression in Greece.
Now, this makes the debt also odious. And this truth is out. The major, this is a major piece of empowerment for the Greek society and the Greek government to take unilateral action about the debt. So I would suggest that they refuse to pay any part of this debt until a major European conference is held, just as the one in 1953 in London, which wrote off more than half of the German debt at the time.
And of course, if this is [the same] the Greek government saves, the political contagion effect of that to the rest of Europe will be immense. And that requires however of course time. And I do believe after saying no to austerity, if the European Central Bank with the pressure coming from the German government, pulls the plug on funding the Greek private banks, the option that is available for the Greek government is first to nationalize the Greek banks. Because what will happen to the banks will be very important. And then use the IOUs to recapitalize the banks, under their control however, not the European Central Bank. Use the IOUs as a medium of exchange for a transitionary period. It will turn into a currency, but it will be denominated in Euros.
So the exit from the Euro, after a no vote, is not an immediate consequence. Time is all they need if they are to achieve the political popular support across Europe. So what I suggest is basically default on the debt, and tell the European government to send the bill to the private European banks of Germany, of France, of Belgium, and elsewhere.
DESVARIEUX: All right, Ozlem, thank you so much for those comments. But I want to just pause the conversation here because in part two I want to get more into the counterarguments being presented about why Greeks should vote yes on this referendum, and I'd like to get your responses.
So Ozlem and John, thank you both for joining us.
ONARAN: Thank you.
WEEKS: Thank you.
DESVARIEUX: And thank you for joining us on the Real News Network.
ISIS video shows mass execution in ruins of Syria's Palmyra
Published on Jul 4, 2015
Gutfeld: Why did the jihadists execute 74 children?
Published on Jul 2, 2015
Because they can
Watch Eric Bolling, Greg Gutfeld, Juan Williams, Katie Pavlich, and Kimberly Guilfoyle on Gutfeld and The Five.
Pentagon: Senior ISIS figure killed in airstrike
Published on Jul 2, 2015
A senior ISIS leader, Tariq Al-Harzi, who is also known as "the emir of suicide bombers" has been killed in an airstrike, according to the Pentagon.
Peter Schiff: The Chickens Are Coming Home To Roost
Published on Jul 3, 2015
On today's show, financial analyst and author Peter Schiff discusses the Greek collapse, Puerto Rico's faltering economy and how America's monetary policies may one day put us on the same path.
Why BP's $18.7 Billion Gulf Spill Settlement Falls Short
Settlement fails to address health and lost livelihood damages while infrastructure for oil transport continues to be built, says Bridge the Gulf Project fellow Cherri Foytlin - July 2, 2015
Why BP's $18.7 Billion Gulf Spill Settlement Falls ShortJESSICA DESVARIEUX, PRODUCER, TRNN: Welcome to the Real News Network. I'm Jessica Desvarieux in Baltimore.
BP has agreed to pay a record environmental fine of $18.7 billion to the U.S. and Gulf states over the fatal 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. If you remember, the event killed 11 workers and resulted in millions of barrels of oil spewing into the Gulf of Mexico, becoming the biggest offshore environmental disaster in history.
Activists have never given up on the fight to try to find justice, and staged protests on the fifth anniversary of the spill in front of BP headquarters in April. One of those activists now joins us. Cherri Foytlin is a freelance journalist and photographer, and she's a fellow at the Bridge the Gulf project.
Thanks for joining us, Cherri.
CHERRI FOYTLIN, FELLOW, BRIDGE THE GULF PROJECT: Thank you for having me.
DESVARIEUX: So Cherri, your home state of Louisiana where you reside, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Texas are all a part of the settlement. Louisiana is the state that was most affected by the spill, and will be recovering more than $10 [billion] from BP. Cherri, do we know what that actually means in practical terms for the people of the Gulf?
FOYTLIN: Well, it means that we'll be getting some money for restoration here in the state of Louisiana. So that's good. But I mean, we have a $15 billion price tag that comes along with that restoration, so really it's just kind of a drop in the bucket.
It means that the Clean Water Act fines will be taken care of. Natural resource damage assessment fines will be taken care of. But unfortunately what I'm worried about is how that translates down to people on the ground. And you know, we're still dealing with a lot of issues, for instance like the livelihood, fish catches and shrimping is still low, the price is extremely low right now. People are still concerned, the consumer, about eating the seafood. So there's that issue.
But also, we still have a lot of people that are still sick from the dispersants that they used out there. And that, this money is aside from that. It doesn't deal with anything that has to do with health. That's my biggest issue, is how that translates down to people on the ground.
We have some states, we're talking about five different states here, and five different amounts of damage. In Louisiana we have a problem with land loss. We have--it comes with a $50 billion price tag to even begin to approach that. Like I said, that's not going to be enough to take care of that. And the BP disaster really exacerbated those issues that we were having.
And in Mississippi they want to build a ballpark. In Alabama they're all excited about this convention center. And then in some parts, too, they're actually building infrastructure like roads and bridges and things like that. And what do you think's going to be going on those bridges. They're building that for the oil companies to have a way to get their product out and in to these ports.
DESVARIEUX: So if I'm understanding you correctly, so it's--some of these funds are going to be going back to the oil industry and helping them.
FOYTLIN: Exactly. It'll be going into projects that will support the continuation of the oil industry and their hold on this region itself.
DESVARIEUX: Can you be more specific? Which exact project are you talking about?
FOYTLIN: In Alabama there's a lot of concern about and a lot of money being thrown down to replace bridges that have been damaged. Canals and the widening of canals like in Mississippi and such. But all of that is to open these ports up bigger to let the oil industry get those tankers in. It all comes down to the money.
I would have been so much happier if they would have earmarked all of that money just for coastal restoration or just for the infrastructure for green energy and renewables. I mean, basically we're on the same track. We're just consistently running around the same track that relies on this archaic industry that we already--it's very much proven beside the BP disaster that they're not concerned about our health, or take care of the people that are, they're mostly affected by these disasters that happen.
I can say, running on that same track, there will be another disaster. They're drilling out there in that same spot right now.
DESVARIEUX: Oh, wow. And we should mention that BP's share price actually rose today in the news. So this is sort of a sigh of relief for investors, in a lot of ways.
I obviously know you don't think that this absolves BP at all. But what at the end of the day would you have liked to--you said coastal restoration. What specifically are we talking about? What would you have liked to see happen with the settlement?
FOYTLIN: Well, here in Louisiana we lose about a football field an hour of land. And part of it's because the oil industry has made these huge canals all across our wetlands that let the water in. And we tried, we tried--our levee authority here really tried to bring the oil industry, including BP, to task and to make them pay their fair share. But they haven't done that. They refused that. And in fact our government, Louisiana government, made it a law. Bobby Jindal in particular really went against that and tried to keep the oil companies from having to pay for the damages that they have brought against us. So what I would have liked to have seen or hear is that that money be earmarked only for restoration.
So the point is, their stocks rose today, right, because people are thinking that this absolves from their guilt. Right, that this washes the sins, BP's sins off of their hands. But unfortunately that's not the case. Because we're still dealing with lots of issues around health issues. I would really like to have seen some sort of medical training for our doctors to be able to deal with toxic issues. I think that would be important. I would like to have seen coastal restoration projects that are really going to support the coast and help to rebuild our land losses that we have, a football field every hour. We've lost over a million acres of land to date. And BP's disaster really exacerbated that.
And in states like Mississippi and Alabama, where this money's going to be going to frivolous things like ballparks and convention centers--not even green. Not even green, the convention centers. It really would have been nice--how many solar panels could we have bought with that much money. You know, how much infrastructure could we put into place that would have made a preventative measure so that this could not happen again. That's what needs to happen. We have to get off this track that we're running on where we're going to run into the exact same issues.
Now, here we are. It's hurricane season. There's still a Rhode Island-sized mat out there in the Gulf for BP's oil. What happens when the hurricanes come in and spread that all over the Gulf coast? BP doesn't have any skin in the game anymore, so that's all going to come back to the taxpayers. It's all going to come back to us. It's going to fall on the health of our people, like it already has, right.
There's no amount of money, no amount of money that can bring back life. And that's the issue here. This does not absolve BP of anything, because there are still 11 people dead. There are still countless sea life that has been damaged. There is still loss of livelihood, and there are still people desperately ill in the Gulf of Mexico.
DESVARIEUX: All right. Cherri Foytlin joining us from Louisiana, thank you so much for being with us.
FOYTLIN: Thank you.
DESVARIEUX: And thank you for joining us on the Real News Network.
Gay Marriage Victory Is Not About Equality
Queer activist Yasmin Nair says that the fight for gay marriage was driven by an elitist, conservative movement - June 26, 2015
Dr. Yasmin Nair is a freelance writer, activist, academic, and commentator based in Chicago. She is the co-founder of the editorial collective Against Equality and a member of Gender JUST, a radical queer grassroots organization based in Chicago. The bastard child of queer theory and deconstruction, Nair has numerous critical essays, book reviews, investigative journalism, op-eds, and photography to her credit. She has appeared in publications like In These Times, Monthly Review, The Awl, The Chicago Reader, GLQ, The Progressive, make/shift, Time Out Chicago, The Bilerico Project, Windy City Times, Bitch, Maximum Rock'n'Roll, and No More Potlucks.
Gay Marriage Victory Is Not About EqualityDHARNA NOOR, PRODUCER, TRNN: Welcome to The Real News Network. I'm Dharna Noor joining you from Baltimore.
In breaking news, the Supreme Court has made the historic ruling that states cannot ban same-sex marriage. Just hours after the decision came down, same-sex couples across the country began joining together in wedlock.
In 2013 the Supreme Court ruled that all spouses, same-sex or otherwise, must be granted the same federal benefits. Today the court went even further, ruling gay marriage a Constitutional right. This comes just in time for the weekend's festivities. Gay pride parades will take place this weekend in cities like San Francisco and New York.
But is it all rainbows from here for the queer community in America? Now joining us from Chicago to unpack this is Yasmin Nair. Yasmin's a writer, an academic, and an activist. She's a member of Gender Just, a radical queer grassroots organization, and a co-founder of the editorial collective Against Equality.
Thanks so much for joining us today, Yasmin.
YASMIN NAIR, CO-FOUNDER, AGAINST EQUALITY: Thank you. It's a pleasure to be here.
NOOR: So Against Equality, huh. Do you think that it's right for institutions like marriage to be exclusionary?
NAIR: No. I mean, what we're saying is that the equality movement [exactly] the way it's configured has nothing at all to do with any kind of social justice, any kind of equality under any law. It has everything to do with excluding people from life saving benefits such as--even now such as healthcare, immigration status, any number of benefits you could name.
The word equality has been vastly misused by the gay marriage movement. And what we wanted to do by naming ourselves as Against Equality was to first of course get people interested in our group, and also for us to be able to say, you know, you need to really question what the word equality means. For whom equality, for whom, who [disperses] equality, under what conditions, most importantly.
NOOR: So today gay marriage passed by a margin of one vote. There were five yeas and four nays. And among those who voted in favor was a Republican appointee, Justice Anthony Kennedy. Is it shocking that somebody who's sided with conservatives on things like affirmative action and campaign finance reform would support this?
NAIR: It's not shocking at all. It's actually inevitable, because in fact that is gay marriage, as I have argued elsewhere, is a fundamentally conservative movement. I'm actually surprised that it took, you know, it only squeaked by by such a narrow majority. But gay marriage is a fundamentally conservative institution, and conservatives love it.
Conservatives, liberals, even leftists love it, because what it does it to shore up a system whereby, a neoliberal system whereby benefits accrue to those with the most private resources. And that's what conservatism is all about, right, it's all about everyone for himself or herself. The state takes absolutely no responsibility for one's welfare. Every man and woman for himself or herself. That's, that, you know, fundamentally is one of the tenets of conservatism.
It's an economically--marriage, not just gay marriage, but marriage is, is an economically sound institution for many conservatives. They have wanted it. You know, they always propound its benefits. So it makes perfect sense that this would be, this is how it all goes down.
NOOR: So you've also noted in your writing that pro-gay marriage organizations have used all these images of black civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King in their branding. So why is it that when people think of the gay rights movement they so often think of the faces of moneyed white men like Dan Savage, the creator of the It Gets Better project?
NAIR: Right, right. And Dan Savage isn't even--to be clear, you know, Dan Savage is not even one of the wealthiest gay men who are behind the movement. The gay marriage movement is actually fundamentally--yeah, someone has, people have always accused me and Against Equality of acting like the gay marriage movement is run by a cabal of white men. What we're finding out is that that is in fact quite true.
The gay marriage movement has been funded by millionaires and multi-millionaires. If you look at someone, something like Jo Becker's book Forcing the Spring about the gay marriage movement, we find out--when you look at that book you find out that a lot of the funding actually came from extremely wealthy people. It's not a grassroots movement at all. It has been funded fundamentally from the start by wealthy white gay men and women.
What the gay marriage movement has done to counteract that particular appearance which keeps coming to the surface is to exploit and use the faces and actions of civil rights leaders and heroes like Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks. At the same time, the gay rights movement has also been fundamentally--and it is fundamentally at its core, it's a racist movement. It is all so often said, they use slogans like gay is the new black. Gays are very fond of saying that gay people are the last oppressed minority in the country.
Anyone who's been following the news in the last few months, including about events like Charleston, anywhere in this country. I live in Chicago, I live in Hyde Park, I live in the South Side. Anyone who actually knows what reality is about knows that is simply not true. But the gay rights movement has always enjoyed using the metaphors and lives of black civil rights leaders in a sense really not--in order to do nothing but just appropriate, and to cover up the fact that it is fundamentally at heart a movement led and financed by wealthy gay white men.
NOOR: And you know, even some that would agree with you on some of the problematic ideals that are within the current gay rights movement, would say that now that we've checked gay rights off the--or gay marriage off the list, we can move on to further radicalizing the movement. What's your response to that?
NAIR: My response is that this isn't--gay rights is an economic movement. It is a movement by and about--it is fundamentally about the economic--it's about accruing economic benefits for the privileged few. It is fundamentally neoliberal. It is about creating a system whereby people can only access resources through privatized means like marriage, right. So that--economic systems don't work in any other way but to dismantle current systems and then to move on and create even more oppressive systems.
Gay marriage is not a social function, it's an economic function. Right? So what you already see--this is, it's never going to happen. What's never going to happen is that gay marriage will now lead to some further radicalizing of causes, or that we can now take a breather and say well, now let's get to queer youth homelessness or HIV/AIDS. Because what's happened in the last 20 or 30 years is that gay marriage has sucked away a lot of resources from both straight and gay people. Is that organizations that deal with HIV/AIDS, organizations that deal with queer youth homelessness and so on, have actually shut down.
Again, there is no moving beyond gay marriage simply because gay marriage has already ravaged the economic landscape of queer organizing. There is no more money to be had, and it's very unlikely that the wealthy gay white people in particular for whom gay marriage was such a big issue are going to turn around and say yes, now let's work on all the other things that actually matter. They don't have to care about it. Remember again that wealthy gay white men in particular never had to care about HIV/AIDS really, because they could always afford the medications. So it's all, it, it's just--that's just not how economic structures work.
And we have to think about gay marriage not as a social [problem], not as a social issue, but as an economic problem. And neoliberalism does not work to stop and look back to see whom it has left behind. It just plows on.
NOOR: Sure. And we've seen a steady rise in support for gay marriage in the U.S. in recent years. So I guess you're saying this isn't just because people are becoming more accepting, more accepting of people, more accepting of love.
NAIR: I'm sorry, I have to laugh at that. But no. No, love has nothing to do with it. I do think that a lot of the sort of liberal left support--the delusional, frankly, liberal left support for gay marriage has been because it has been, it has perceived the movement as being one about love. So all it sees are these sweet gay couples and their children and so on and so forth. The subterfuge has worked really well. I think the more and more people learn about gay marriage's economic ramifications and also who's really behind gay marriage, I think there's going to be much less support for the cause. Of course, now it's, it doesn't really matter because we're in it now.
But no, I think the support has been because again, because of the failure to recognize gay marriage as an economic matter.
NOOR: So what kind of policy solutions do you see as being effective, to truly support the American queer community, the gay population, trans population, et cetera?
NAIR: I think what we have to do is first of all--I do think that there is a, there's an enormous ideological and psychological component to all of this. The first thing we have to realize is that we're in a terrible spot, right. So as long as we keep thinking that gay marriage is one point in a long history of achievements, we are, we--we are, I'm trying to think of a word that's polite enough and that's not a four-letter word. We're just screwed.
As long as we think that we can move on, there is no--there is no healthy alternative for us. What we have to do moving here onward, here forwards, is to stop and first reevaluate how we think about what communities need. We also need to think about, I think the really big issue for the queer community is to start thinking about it as part of a larger community. As part of a larger fabric, as it were.
So as long as the queer community only thinks selfishly about itself as gay marriage is being the guiding, the guiding force, for instance, everybody is doomed. And I think moving forward we have to start realizing that matters like the intense racism, right, that exists in this country which is worse than--as bad or worse than plantation racism. That's what we are in right now. And 21st century America is suffused with plantation racism. We have to think about that. We have to think about the devastating economic and environmental policies that we have set in place. All of that is connected to people. It's not just about gay people and their particular gay issues.
So moving forward we have to think in those kinds of dare I say collaborative ways. But we also have to start thinking about how to get support to matters like, for instance, queer homelessness. Or an issue that I'm very concerned about with, I see it in a lot of my older friends, the questions around geriatric AIDS, for instance. For the first time in many generations we actually have a couple of generations of men and women who are actually living older, who are aging with AIDS, right. And [inaud.] gay men who are actually living to very, to quite a ripe old age, and we don't know what to do about them because we can't simply put them in the usual kinds of senior housing services, for instance.
Those are the issues we have to think about, and we also have to think about how do we fund and support those matters. How do we sustain those kinds of struggles without being focused only on the funding given to us by a few wealthy gay people. And that has been the fundamental problem with queer organizing for far too many years. And that, a lot of that is because nobody would fund us before. Nobody was funding AIDS research until we forced the government to do it.
So we're in a different time and place. And we have to start thinking, stop thinking about the gay patriarchy as being the only source of revenue or the only source of support. We also have to think collaboratively. What all of this means is actually in many ways it's going to be really difficult, is to dismantle and to sort of, and to kind of interrogate a gay nonprofit-industrial complex that has sprung up in the meantime. That's really hard work. I'm tempted to say it's impossible. I'm just going to say that it's hard work, simply because I know so many of my friends who are actually working within the bowels of that machine, right.
So it's a long and hard struggle, and I think it is delusional of any of us to say that now that we have finished with gay marriage we can move on. The work is much harder because there's much less money, there's much less political energy, and times are hard. Neoliberalism is flexing its--not just flexing its muscles, it's, it's taken over and ti's strangling us.
NOOR: Thank you so much for this very sobering conversation, and we look forward to hearing from you in the future.
NAIR: Thank you, it was a pleasure. Thank you for having me on.
NOOR: And thank you for joining us on The Real News Network.