Various Things: DREAM Act Dying—Reza Aslan on US-Funded Terror in Iran—Abunimah on Ending Israel-Palestine Apartheid—And More…

Posted on December 18, 2010

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I’m quite liking this “Various Things” format. I hope it doesn’t telegraph just how lazy I am:

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The DREAM act will most likely expire in the Senate today. Don’t worry, everyone. It will be re-born when the Republicans are in power again in two years, when it will be called the Meet Our Quota Military Act or the Let’s Get Ready to Invade Venezuela, Bolivia, et. al. Act. I assume that when it reaches the logical apogee of its evolution–a military recruitment vehicle with no educational features–it will still be palatable to those on the left who support it now. After all, all of our issues are completely separate and easily compartmentalized. Militarism is a totally separate issue from immigration. All those people who’ve opposed aggressive military recruitment in our high schools, can simply drop that now that something shinier is dangling in their peripheral vision, and actually support high school military recruitment, so long as it only affects people who weren’t going to amount to much anyway. Happily, in this great country, you can be Anti-War and Pro-War at the same time, and its no biggee.

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One of the handy things about my blog roll roster is I have an easy menu from which to read daily. Even so, I find I don’t do it often enough. Reza Aslan has a couple of great articles on alleged US involvement in recent terror in Iran

Is the US Still Funding Iranian Suicide Bombers

Who’s Killing Iranian Scientists

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Ali Abunimah Has a Great Op-Ed in the LA Times. I’ve been arguing much the same position for over a decade. Its time to turn away from the failed and increasingly impossible task of creating a Palestinian state next to Israel, and convert our frustrated and confused energies toward a civil rights movement to  force the de-facto Israeli-Palestinian state to end its apartheid. I’ve got a great name for that state, should it ever emerge (I’m clicking my ruby slippers together): Can’aan. Despite biblical and hebrew ahistoricity, that’s what the place was called when everyone was still slaughtering lambs to hoofed-gods. There were several religions then, all tolerated, and which eventually became the seeds of Islam and Christianity and certainly influenced Judaism. The place was a transitional point, as it’s always been, where people from around the world have stopped, rested; then moved on, or settled down. For those worrying that a state of both Muslims and Jews could never get off the ground, I think that’s a frame worth remembering.

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Long-time Communications Activist (for lack of a better term) Jamie McClelland gives an inspiring talk about the possibilities of activism and democracy in the developing world, and an appeal to help establish the Indy Media Convergence Center at the World Social Forum in Dakar next month.

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Bradley Manning continues to languish in a brig, where he’s in lockdown 23 of 24 hours a day. Its become quite apparent that the US is trying to break him down, so that he’ll plea down and testify against Assange. The most disgusting thing about such strategies is that they work every day in this country to put people in jail in an almost extra-judicial way, where people are jailed with high bail until they give up and admit to crimes that they wouldn’t have admitted to in a judicial process in order to escape the void of incarceration. The Justice Department’s own figures show that almost 90% of all criminal cases in the US are wrapped up in this fashion. From alleged drug offenses to alleged treason, it’s all the same stank.

It may be small comfort–or it may be large, who knows–but you can send letters to Bradley Manning c/o of the Bradley Manning Support Group. I know, these are fleshy-letters, written with pens placed awkwardly between fingers and on fibrous–porous–empty-unless-you-write-on-it-no-pop ups–paper! But whatever: it might be evoke some nostalgia for some of you; and it may connect the youngins’, who’ve had to listen to so many lectures of how hard life was when you had to walk fifteen blocks to the Post Office to mail a letter, to the elderly:

Bradley Manning
c/o Courage to Resist
484 Lake Park Ave #41
Oakland CA 94610
USA

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