Thursday, November 11, 2010

BAUAW NEWSLETTER-THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 11, 2010



More info for THURSDAY'S PROTEST for justice for Derrick Jones and Oscar Grant

Justice for Derrick Jones!
Justice for Oscar Grant!

A BADGE IS NOT A LICENSE TO KILL
Stop Racist Police Killings and Jail All Killer Cops
Jail the Police Who Killed Derrick Jones

Protest and March Thursday, Nov. 11th
3:00PM: Rally in front of Derrick Jones' Barber Shop
(5815 Bancroft Way, near 58th Ave., Oakland)
4:00PM: March to Fruitvale BART Station

On Monday night, November 8, 2010, Derrick Jones was shot and killed by Oakland police near the barber shop that Mr. Jones owned on Bancroft and 58th Ave. Mr. Jones was unarmed. He was a known figure in the community, an artist who grew up in East Oakland who went on to own his own business. Mr. Jones' barber shop was a place where people of all ages knew they could find support.

Jones' family were already known by the police because they stood up and won against Oakland police brutality. When the police assaulted and brutalized members of his family several years ago, they sued against the police and won, getting two police officers fired. If the police get away with killing Derrick Jones, any family that stands up against police brutality in the future will be afraid that their lives will be endangered. We cannot let that happen.

In the coming hours and days the cover-up for the cops will go into overdrive. More slanders and rumors and disinformation will be spread as the campaign to exonerate the cops increases its efforts. We need to ignore all of those lies. The only thing that matters is that Derrick Jones was an unarmed man who was shot in an alley because of racism.

Join friends, family, and supporters on Thursday, Nov. 11 at 3:00 pm in front of Mr. Jones' barber shop on Bancroft near 58th Ave. to demand justice for Derrick Jones and to stop racist police killing. Jail the police who killed Derrick Jones! A BADGE IS NOT A LICENSE TO KILL.

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Bay Area United Against War Newsletter
Table of Contents:
A. EVENTS AND ACTIONS
B. VIDEO, FILM, AUDIO. ART, POETRY, ETC.
C. SPECIAL APPEALS AND ONGOING CAMPAIGNS
D. ARTICLES IN FULL

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A. EVENTS AND ACTIONS

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STOP U.S. IMPERIALIST WARS!
VICTORY TO THE OPPRESSED PEOPLES IN THE U.S. AND THROUGHOUT THE WORLD!
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2010
MARCH ON WASHINGTON
BLACK IS BACK
blackisbackcoalition.org

Black Is Back: Let's March on White House Again, Nov. 13
A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
October 6, 2010
http://www.blackagendareport.com/?q=content/black-back-lets-march-white-house-again-nov-13

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SF Premiere of the new documentary film about the Angola 3
"IN THE LAND OF THE FREE..."
3 men, 100 years in solitary confinement. In America. Today.
Tues. Nov. 16, 7:30pm
ATA Theater, 992 Valencia St. at 21st St., SF
$6 donation (no one turned away for lack of funds)

Join us for an update on the case and discussion with Marina Drummer from the National Committee to Free the Angola 3.

Herman Wallace, Albert Woodfox and Robert King spent almost a century between them in solitary confinement in Angola, the Louisiana State penitentiary. They are known as the Angola 3. Herman and Albert are still in solitary confinement after thirty seven years.

In the Land of the Free... is a documentary feature narrated by Samuel L Jackson that examines the story of these extraordinary men who were targeted by the prison authorities for being members of the Black Panther Party and because they fought against the terrible conditions and systematic sexual slavery that was rife in the prison.

The film is directed by Vadim Jean; produced by Gold Circle Films (My Big Fat Greek Wedding). 2010, 84 min.

Call 415-821-6545 for more info.

A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
http://www.AnswerCoalition.org
http://www.AnswerSF.org
Answer@AnswerSF.org
2489 Mission St. Rm. 24
415-821-6545

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NOVEMBER 2010 - CONVERGE ON FORT BENNING, GEORGIA
November 18-21, 2010: Close the SOA and take a stand for justice in the Americas.
www.soaw.org/take-action/november-vigil

The November Vigil to Close the School of the Americas at the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia will be held from November 18-21, 2010. The annual vigil is always held close to the anniversary of the 1989 murders of Celina Ramos, her mother Elba and six Jesuit priests at a the University of Central America in El Salvador.

ORGANIZE YOUR COMMUNITY FOR THE 2010 VIGIL!

November 2010 will mark the 20th anniversary of the vigil that brings together religious communities, students, teachers, veterans, community organizers, musicians, puppetistas and many others. New layers of activists are joining the movement to close the SOA in large numbers, including numerous youth and students from multinational, working-class communities. The movement is strong thanks to the committed work of thousands of organizers and volunteers around the country. They raise funds, spread the word through posters and flyers, organize buses and other transportation to Georgia, and carry out all the work that is needed to make the November vigil a success. Together, we are strong!

VIGIL AND RALLY AT THE GATES, NONVIOLENT DIRECT ACTION, TEACH-IN, CONCERTS, WORKSHOPS AND A ANTI-MILITARIZATION ORGANIZERS CONFERENCE

There will be exciting additions to this year's vigil program. Besides the rally at the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia with inspiring speakers and amazing musicians from across the Americas, the four day convergence will also include an educational teach-in at the Columbus Convention Center, several evening concerts, workshops and for the first time, the Latin America Solidarity Coalition will stage a one-day Anti-Militarization Organizers Conference on Thursday, November 18, 2010.

SHUT DOWN THE SOA AND RESIST U.S. MILITARIZATION IN THE AMERICAS

Our work has unfortunately not gotten any easier and U.S. militarization in Latin America is accelerating. The SOA graduate led military coup in Honduras, the continuing repression against the Honduran pro-democracy resistance and the expansion of U.S. military bases in Colombia and Panama are grim examples of the ongoing threats of a U.S. foreign policy that is relying on the military to exert control over the people and the resources in the Americas. Join the people who are struggling for justice in Honduras, Colombia and throughout the Americas as we organize to push back.

Spread the word - Tell a friend about the November Vigil:
http://www.SOAW.org/tellafriend

For more information, visit:
www.SOAW.org.

See you at the gates of Fort Benning in November 2010

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B. VIDEO, FILM, AUDIO. ART, POETRY, ETC.:

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Oscar Grant & Mumia: What is Black life worth in America?
Tuesday, November 09, 2010 3:17 PM | 6 comments
By Brother Jesse
November 1, 2010
Anonymous BP cleanup worker: The oil "really hasn't even been touched"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vegVKrg84HI&feature=player_embedded
http://allhiphop.com/stories/editorial/archive/2010/11/09/22476630.aspx

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Roma band GOGOL BORDELLO
Video
"Immigraniada (We Comin' Rougher)"
http://links.org.au/node/1961

GOGOL BORDELLO LYRICS
"Immigraniada (We Comin' Rougher)"
http://links.org.au/node/1961

Immigrada immigraniada
Immigrada immigraniada-da
Immigrada immigraniada
We're coming rougher every time

We're coming rougher
We're coming rougher
We're coming rougher every time

Immigrada immigraniada
Immigrada immigraniada-da
Immigrada immigraniada
We're coming rougher every time

In corridors full of tear gas
Our destinies jammed every day
Like deleted scenes from Kafka
Flushed down the bureaucratic drain

But if you give me the invitation
To hear the bells of freedom chime
To hell with your double standards
We're coming rougher every time

We're coming rougher
We're coming rougher
We're coming rougher every time

Immigrada immigraniada
Immigrada immigraniada-da
Immigrada immigraniada
We're coming rougher every time

All those who made it and quickly jaded
To them we got nothing to say
Our immigrada, immigraniada
For them it's Don Quixote's kind of way
But if you give me the invitation
To hear the bells of freedom chime
To hell with your double standards
We're coming rougher every time
We're coming rougher
We're coming rougher
We're coming rougher every time
We're coming rougher every time

Immigrada immigraniada
Immigrada immigraniada-da
Immigrada immigraniada
We're coming rougher every time

Frozen eyes, sweaty back
My family's sleeping on a railroad track
All my life I pack/unpack
But man I got to earn this buck
I gotta pay representation
To be accepted in a nation
Where after efforts of a hero
Welcome start again from zero

It's a book of our true stories
True stories that can't be denied
It's more than true it actually happened
It's more than true it actually happened
It's more than true it actually happened
We're coming rougher every time
Rougher every time
We're coming rougher every time
Immigrada immigraniada
Immigrada immigraniada-da
Immigrada immigraniada
We're coming rougher every time
Immigrada immigraniada
Immigrada immigraniada-da hey hey
We're coming rougher every time

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From The Ramparts 10-27-10
by Junious Ricardo Stanton plus
Junious Ricardo Stanton's video blog. Today's topic the impact of the economic meltdown on African-Americans. Junious shares data from the US Congress Joint Economic Committee on African-AMerican Unemployment and underemployement and the disproportionate rates of default and foreclosure in the African-American and Latino communities.
http://vimeo.com/16252641

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The Spill
A joint investigation by FRONTLINE and ProPublica into the trail of problems -- deadly accidents, disastrous spills, countless safety violations -- which long troubled the oil giant, BP. Could the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico have been prevented?
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/the-spill/

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Tag-Team Wrestling
"We have Learned who is For Real and who is Frontin'."
Glen Ford speaks in West Haven, CT just before the Oct. 2010 "One Nation Working Together" DC demo. See his scathing comments about the speakers from the main stage at the actual demo at blackagendareport.com
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PAIuTM3cK9I

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Video of massive French protest -- inspiring!
http://www.dailymotion.com/Talenceagauchevraiment

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BREAKING NEWS: Fresh Oil Dead Fish Cover Grand Isle As Crews Bury Fish On Public Beach
October 18, 2010
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mYjlrZgCzsE&feature=player_embedded

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UNPC March to Mosque
The United National Peace Conference concluded with a solidarity march to the Albany Mosque. The activists marched in support of our Muslim brothers and sisters who have been charged, found guilty and are serving jail terms for terrorism. The cases of the Albany 2, the Fort Dix 5 and Lynne Stewart were brought to light during the rally. The peace groups reiterated their opposition to the preemptive prosecution techniques used by the FBI. It was a moving conclusion to an inspiring weekend.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dXVUgnufOi4&feature=email

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UAW Workers Picket The UAW Over Two-Tier
http://rustbeltradical.wordpress.com/2010/10/18/uaw-workers-picket-the-uaw/

Rally To End Two-Tier & Stand in Solidarity with GM Lake Orion | UAW HQ, Detroit MI (1 of 2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bST5aTYZa00&feature=player_embedded

Rally To End Two-Tier & Stand in Solidarity with GM Lake Orion | UAW HQ, Detroit MI (2 of 2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NHLb-KMXD9c&feature=player_embedded

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BP Contract Worker "Trenches Dug To Bury Oil On Beaches"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0qop9xbGv4&feature=player_embedded

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Dr. Harbut [Dr. Michael Harbut, Professor of Medicine, Wayne State University] spoke with the Navy. Navy asked about training exercises over Gulf with risk of somebody going down into water... should we consider suspending training? Navy then suspended exercises over Gulf.
http://www.floridaoilspilllaw.com/navy-suspended-exercises-over-gulf

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RETHINK Afghanistan: The 10th Year: Afghanistan Veterans Speak Out
http://rethinkafghanistan.com/

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Firefighters Watch As Home Burns:
Gene Cranick's House Destroyed In Tennessee Over $75 Fee
By Adam J. Rose
The Huffington Post -- videos
10- 5-10 12:12 AM
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/10/04/firefighters-watch-as-hom_n_750272.html

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NOAA investigating husband & wife that were sprayed with dispersant while sleeping on boat
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=InnmBRL84Dw&feature=player_embedded

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Dangers Lurk Beneath the Surface of Gulf of Mexico
September 29th, 2010
In spite of what you might have read in the news, the oil in the Gulf of Mexico has not just disappeared. It's lurking on the bottom, destroying marine life and entire ecosystems. On top of that, we are now starting to see adverse health effects from BP's use of the toxic oil dispersant known as Corexit, which is being dumped into the Gulf as we speak. Mike Papantonio talks about some of the effects that we're now seeing as a result of BP's dispersant chemicals with Dr. Riki Ott, one of the leading experts on the impact of oil spills on human health.
http://www.ringoffireradio.com/2010/09/29/dangers-lurk-beneath-the-surface-of-gulf-of-mexico/

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Soldier Describes Murder of Afghan for Sport in Leaked Tape
By ROBERT MACKEY
September 27, 2010, 6:43 pm
http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/09/27/soldier-describes-murder-of-afghan-for-sport-in-leaked-tape/?ref=world

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"Don't F*** With Our Activists" - Mobilizing Against FBI Raid
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XyG3dIUGQvQ

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Stephen Colbert's statement before Congress
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/39343087#39343087

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PcolaGregg Answers VisitPensacola.com With Truth And Reality
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OtopYgl9h8Q&feature=player_embedded#!

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C. SPECIAL APPEALS AND ONGOING CAMPAIGNS

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Add you name! We stand with Bradley Manning.

"We stand for truth, for government transparency, and for an end to our tax-dollars funding endless occupation abroad... We stand with accused whistle-blower US Army Pfc. Bradley Manning."

Dear All,

The Bradley Manning Support Network and Courage to Resist are launching a new campaign, and we wanted to give you a chance to be among the first to add your name to this international effort. If you sign the letter online, we'll print out and mail two letters to Army officials on your behalf. With your permission, we may also use your name on the online petition and in upcoming media ads.

Read the complete public letter and add your name at:
http://standwithbrad.org/

Courage to Resist (http://couragetoresist.org)
on behalf of the Bradley Manning Support Network (http://bradleymanning.org)
484 Lake Park Ave #41, Oakland CA 94610
510-488-3559

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Committee to Stop FBI Repression
P.O. Box 14183
Minneapolis, MN 55414

Dear Friend,

On Friday, September 24th, the FBI raided homes in Chicago and Minneapolis, and turned the Anti-War Committee office upside down. We were shocked. Our response was strong however and we jumped into action holding emergency protests. When the FBI seized activists' personal computers, cell phones, and papers claiming they were investigating "material support for terrorism", they had no idea there would be such an outpouring of support from the anti-war movement across this country! Over 61 cities protested, with crowds of 500 in Minneapolis and Chicago. Activists distributed 12,000 leaflets at the One Nation Rally in Washington D.C. Supporters made thousands of calls to President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder. Solidarity statements from community organizations, unions, and other groups come in every day. By organizing against the attacks, the movement grows stronger.

At the same time, trusted lawyers stepped up to form a legal team and mount a defense. All fourteen activists signed letters refusing to testify. So Assistant U.S. Attorney Brandon Fox withdrew the subpoenas, but this is far from over. In fact, the repression is just starting. The FBI continues to question activists at their homes and work places. The U.S. government is trying to put people in jail for anti-war and international solidarity activism and there is no indication they are backing off. The U.S. Attorney has many options and a lot of power-he may re-issue subpoenas, attempt to force people to testify under threat of imprisonment, or make arrests.

To be successful in pushing back this attack, we need your donation. We need you to make substantial contributions like $1000, $500, and $200. We understand many of you are like us, and can only afford $50, $20, or $10, but we ask you to dig deep. The legal bills can easily run into the hundreds of thousands. We are all united to defend a movement for peace and justice that seeks friendship with people in other countries. These fourteen anti-war activists have done nothing wrong, yet their freedom is at stake.

It is essential that we defend our sisters and brothers who are facing FBI repression and the Grand Jury process. With each of your contributions, the movement grows stronger.

Please make a donation today at stopfbi.net (PayPal) on the right side of your screen. Also you can write to:
Committee to Stop FBI Repression
P.O. Box 14183
Minneapolis, MN 55414

This is a critical time for us to stand together, defend free speech, and defend those who help to organize for peace and justice, both at home and abroad!

Thank you for your generosity! Tom Burke

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Deafening Silence, Chuck Africa (MOVE 9)
Check out other art and poetry by prisoners at:
Shujaas!: Prisoners Resisting Through Art
...we banging hard, yes, very hard, on this system...
http://shujaas.wordpress.com/

Peace People,
This poem is from Chuck Africa, one of the MOVE 9, who is currently serving 30-100 years on trump up charges of killing a police officer. After 32 years in prison, the MOVE 9 are repeatly denied parole, after serving their minimum sentence. Chuck wanted me to share this with the people, so that we can see how our silence in demanding the MOVE 9's freedom is inherently an invitation to their death behind prison walls.

Deafening Silence
Don't ya'll hear cries of anguish?
In the climate of pain come joining voices?
But voices become unheard and strained by inactions
Of dead brains
How long will thou Philly soul remain in the pit of agonizing apathy?
Indifference seems to greet you like the morning mirror
Look closely in the mirror and realize it's a period of mourning....
My Sistas, mothers, daughters, wives and warriors
Languish in prisons obscurity like a distant star in the galaxies as does their brothers
We need to be free....
How loud can you stay silence?
Have the courage to stand up and have a say,
Choose resistance and let go of your fears.
The history of injustice to MOVE; we all know so well
But your deafening silence could be my DEATH KNELL.
Chuck Africa

Please share, inform people and get involve in demanding the MOVE 9's freedom! www.MOVE9parole.blogspot.com

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Say No to Islamophobia!
Defend Mosques and Community Centers!
The Fight for Peace and Social Justice Requires Defense of All Under Attack!
http://www.petitiononline.com/nophobia/petition.html

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Kevin Keith Update: Good News! Death sentence commuted!

Ohio may execute an innocent man unless you take action.
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/save-kevin-keith

Ohio's Governor Spares Life of a Death Row Inmate Kevin Keith
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/03/us/03ohio.html?ref=us

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Please sign the petition to release Bradley Manning

http://www.petitiononline.com/manning1/petition.html (Click to sign here)

To: US Department of Defense; US Department of Justice
We, the Undersigned, call for justice for US Army PFC Bradley Manning, incarcerated without charge (as of 18 June 2010) at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait.

Media accounts state that Mr. Manning was arrested in late May for leaking the video of US Apache helicopter pilots killing innocent people and seriously wounding two children in Baghdad, including those who arrived to help the wounded, as well as potentially other material. The video was released by WikiLeaks under the name "Collateral Murder".

If these allegations are untrue, we call upon the US Department of Defense to release Mr. Manning immediately.

If these allegations ARE true, we ALSO call upon the US Department of Defense to release Mr. Manning immediately.

Simultaneously, we express our support for Mr. Manning in any case, and our admiration for his courage if he is, in fact, the person who disclosed the video. Like in the cases of Daniel Ellsberg, W. Mark Felt, Frank Serpico and countless other whistleblowers before, government demands for secrecy must yield to public knowledge and justice when government crime and corruption are being kept hidden.

Justice for Bradley Manning!

Sincerely,

The Undersigned:
http://www.petitiononline.com/mod_perl/signed.cgi?manning1

--
Zaineb Alani
http://www.thewordsthatcomeout.blogspot.com
http://www.tigresssmiles.blogspot.com
"Yesterday I lost a country. / I was in a hurry, / and didn't notice when it fell from me / like a broken branch from a forgetful tree. / Please, if anyone passes by / and stumbles across it, / perhaps in a suitcase / open to the sky, / or engraved on a rock / like a gaping wound, / ... / If anyone stumbles across it, / return it to me please. / Please return it, sir. / Please return it, madam. / It is my country . . . / I was in a hurry / when I lost it yesterday." -Dunya Mikhail, Iraqi poet

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Please forward widely...

HELP LYNNE STEWART -- SUPPORT THESE BILLS

These two bills are now in Congress and need your support. Either or both bills would drastically decrease Lynne's and other federal sentences substantially.

H.R. 1475 "Federal Prison Work Incentive Act Amended 2009," Congressman Danny Davis, Democrat, Illinois

This bill will restore and amend the former federal B.O.P. good time allowances. It will let all federal prisoners, except lifers, earn significant reductions to their sentences. Second, earn monthly good time days by working prison jobs. Third, allowances for performing outstanding services or duties in connection with institutional operations. In addition, part of this bill is to bring back parole to federal long term prisoners.

Go to: www.FedCURE.org and www.FAMM.org

At this time, federal prisoners only earn 47 days per year good time. If H.R. 1475 passes, Lynne Stewart would earn 120-180 days per year good time!

H.R. 61 "45 And Older," Representative Sheila Jackson-Lee (18th Congressional District, Texas)

This bill provides early release from federal prison after serving half of a violent crime or violent conduct in prison.

Please write, call, email your Representatives and Senators. Demand their votes!

This information is brought to you by Diane E. Schindelwig, a federal prisoner #36582-177 and friend and supporter of Lynne Stewart.

Write to Lynne at:

Lynne Stewart 53504-054
MCC-NY 2-S
150 Park Row
New York, NY 10007

For further information call Lynne's husband, Ralph Poynter, leader of the Lynne Stewart Defense Committee
718-789-0558 or 917-853-9759

Send contributions payable to:

Lynne Stewart Organization
1070 Dean Street
Brooklyn, New York, 11216

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Listen to Lynne Stewart event, that took place July 8, 2010 at Judson Memorial Church
Excerpts include: Mumia Abu Jamal, Ralph Poynter, Ramsey Clark, Juanita
Young, Fred Hampton Jr., Raging Grannies, Ralph Schoenman
http://www.takingaimradio.com/shows/audio.html

And check out this article (link) too!
http://www.baltimorechronicle.com/2010/062210Lendman.shtml

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AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL GRAVELY CONCERNED THAT RULING PUTS TROY DAVIS ON TRACK FOR EXECUTION; CITES PERSISTING DOUBTS ABOUT HIS GUILT
"Judge William T. Moore, Jr. ruled that while executing an innocent person would violate the United States Constitution, Davis didn't meet the extraordinarily high legal bar to prove his innocence."
Amnesty International Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Contact: Wende Gozan Brown at 212-633-4247, wgozan@aiusa.org.

(Washington, D.C.) - Amnesty International USA (AIUSA) today expressed deep concern that a federal district court decision puts Georgia death-row inmate Troy Anthony Davis back on track for execution, despite doubts about his guilt that were raised during a June evidentiary hearing. Judge William T. Moore, Jr. ruled that while executing an innocent person would violate the United States Constitution, Davis didn't meet the extraordinarily high legal bar to prove his innocence.

"Nobody walking out of that hearing could view this as an open-and-shut case," said Larry Cox, executive director of AIUSA. "The testimony that came to light demonstrates that doubt still exists, but the legal bar for proving innocence was set so high it was virtually insurmountable. It would be utterly unconscionable to proceed with this execution, plain and simple."

Amnesty International representatives, including Cox, attended the hearing in Savannah, Ga. The organization noted that evidence continues to cast doubt over the case:

· Four witnesses admitted in court that they lied at trial when they implicated Troy Davis and that they did not know who shot Officer Mark MacPhail.

· Four witnesses implicated another man as the one who killed the officer - including a man who says he saw the shooting and could clearly identify the alternative suspect, who is a family member.

· Three original state witnesses described police coercion during questioning, including one man who was 16 years old at the time of the murder and was questioned by several police officers without his parents or other adults present.

"The Troy Davis case is emblematic of everything that is wrong with capital punishment," said Laura Moye, director of AIUSA's Death Penalty Abolition Campaign. "In a system rife with error, mistakes can be made. There are no do-overs when it comes to death. Lawmakers across the country should scrutinize this case carefully, not only because of its unprecedented nature, but because it clearly indicates the need to abolish the death penalty in the United States."

Since the launch of its February 2007 report, Where Is the Justice for Me? The Case of Troy Davis, Facing Execution in Georgia, Amnesty International has campaigned intensively for a new evidentiary hearing or trial and clemency for Davis, collecting hundreds of thousands of clemency petition signatures and letters from across the United States and around the world. To date, internationally known figures such as Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and former U.S. President Jimmy Carter have all joined the call for clemency, as well as lawmakers from within and outside of Georgia.

Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 2.8 million supporters, activists and volunteers who campaign for universal human rights from more than 150 countries. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.

# # #

For more information visit www.amnestyusa.org/troydavis.

Wende Gozan Brown
Media Relations Director
Amnesty International USA
212/633-4247 (o)
347/526-5520 (c)

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Please sign the petition to stop the execution of Mumia Abu-Jamal and
and forward it to all your lists.

"Mumia Abu-Jamal and The Global Abolition of the Death Penalty"

http://www.petitiononline.com/Mumialaw/petition.html

(A Life In the Balance - The Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal, at 34, Amnesty Int'l, 2000; www. Amnesty.org/en/library/info/AMR51/001/2000.)

[Note: This petition is approved by Mumia Abu-Jamal and his lead attorney, Robert R. Bryan, San Francisco (E-mail: MumiaLegalDefense@gmail.com; Website: www.MumiaLegalDefense.org).]

Committee To Save Mumia Abu-Jamal
P.O. Box 2012
New York, NY 10159-2012

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Donations for Mumia's Legal Defense in the U.S. Our legal effort is the front line of the battle for Mumia's freedom and life. His legal defense needs help. The costs are substantial for our litigation in the U.S. Supreme Court and at the state level. To help, please make your checks payable to the National Lawyers Guild Foundation indicate "Mumia" on the bottom left). All donations are tax deductible under the Internal Revenue Code, section 501c)3), and should be mailed to:

It is outrageous and a violation of human rights that Mumia remains in prison and on death row. His life hangs in the balance. My career has been marked by successfully representing people facing death in murder cases. I will not rest until we win Mumia's case. Justice requires no less.

With best wishes,

Robert R. Bryan
Lead counsel for Mumia Abu-Jamal

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Short Video About Al-Awda's Work
The following link is to a short video which provides an overview of Al-Awda's work since the founding of our organization in 2000. This video was first shown on Saturday May 23, 2009 at the fundraising banquet of the 7th Annual Int'l Al-Awda Convention in Anaheim California. It was produced from footage collected over the past nine years.
Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTiAkbB5uC0&eurl
Support Al-Awda, a Great Organization and Cause!

Al-Awda, The Palestine Right to Return Coalition, depends on your financial support to carry out its work.

To submit your tax-deductible donation to support our work, go to
http://www.al-awda.org/donate.html and follow the simple instructions.

Thank you for your generosity!

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KEVIN COOPER IS INNOCENT!
FLASHPOINTS Interview with Innocent San Quentin Death Row Inmate
Kevin Cooper -- Aired Monday, May 18,2009
http://www.flashpoints.net/#GOOGLE_SEARCH_ENGINE
To learn more about Kevin Cooper go to:
savekevincooper.org
LINKS
San Francisco Chronicle article on the recent ruling:
http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2009/05/13/BAM517J8T3.DTL
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling and dissent:
http://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/opinions/2009/05/11/05-99004o.pdf

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COURAGE TO RESIST!
Support the troops who refuse to fight!
http://www.couragetoresist.org/x/
Donate:
http://www.couragetoresist.org/x/content/view/21/57/

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D. ARTICLES IN FULL

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1) The prison boom comes home to roost
"...while prisons boomed, something else was happening - a trade-off. As sociologist Loic Wacquant says, the government was simultaneously slashing funds for public housing. In the 1990s, as federal corrections budgets increased by $19 billion, money for housing was cut by $17 billion, 'effectively making the construction of prisons the nation's main housing program for the poor.'"
By James Carroll
November 8, 2010
http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2010/11/08/the_prison_boom_comes_home_to_roost/

2) AWOL Soldier Refusing Deployment Because of Severe PTSD
by: Sarah Lazare, t r u t h o u t | Report
Friday 05 November 2010
http://www.truth-out.org/awol-soldier-refusing-deployment-because-severe-ptsd64831?print

3) Colombia Workers: Keep Fighting Against Free Trade Agreement
by James Parks
Nov 9, 2010
http://blog.aflcio.org/2010/11/09/colombia-workers-keep-fighting-against-free-trade-agreement/

4) Education Protest in London Turns Violent
By SARAH LYALL
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/11/world/europe/11london.html?hp

5) France: Pension Bill Signed Into Law
By STEVEN ERLANGER
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/10/world/europe/10briefs-Paris.html?ref=world

6) Atheist Groups Promote a Holiday Message: Join Us
By LAURIE GOODSTEIN
November 9, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/10/us/10atheist.html?ref=us

7) G.M., Days Away from Stock Offering, Posts $2 Billion Profit
By NICK BUNKLEY
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/11/business/11auto.html?ref=business

8) [NatAssembly2008:2550] Lynne Stewart Letter to Prison Official
For Immediate Release:
To:
Harley Lappin, Director,
Federal Bureau of Prisons
320 First Street NW
Washington, DC 20534-0002
November 6, 2010
Via Email

9) Cuba Denounces 'Virtual' Castro Plot in New Game
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
[Can you imagine what the U.S. do if Cuba put out a video game to assassinate Obama? They'd probably declare war and bomb the tiny island into smithereens...bw]
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2010/11/10/technology/AP-CB-TEC-Cuba-Call-of-Duty.html?src=busln

10) Supreme Court to rule on famed death penalty case
By Jon Hurdle
Sun, Jan 17 2010
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE60G15920100117



11) Family Disputes Police Claims In Fatal Shooting of Derrick Jones
By Kevin L. Jones
Posted: 4:58 pm PST November 9, 2010Updated: 5:24 am PST November 10, 2010
http://www.ktvu.com/news/25690418/detail.html

12) Obama Administration Claims Unchecked Authority To Kill Americans Outside Combat Zones
November 8, 2010
http://www.aclu.org/national-security/obama-administration-claims-unchecked-authority-kill-americans-outside-combat-zone

13) Round Two: Third Circuit Court Panel Re-Hears Issue of Abu-Jamal's Death Penalty on Orders of Supreme Court
By Dave Lindorff
Wed, 11/10/2010 - 10:39 - Anonymous
http://www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/300

14) Facing Austerity, Britain Unveils Welfare Cuts
By SARAH LYALL and ALAN COWELL
November 11, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/12/world/europe/12britain.html?hp

15) Louisiana: No Excuse for Shooting in Storm's Aftermath, Jurors Told
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/11/us/11brfs-NOEXCUSEFORS_BRF.html?ref=us

16) Teacher's Death Exposes Tensions in Los Angeles
By IAN LOVETT
November 9, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/10/education/10teacher.html?ref=education

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1) The prison boom comes home to roost
"...while prisons boomed, something else was happening - a trade-off. As sociologist Loic Wacquant says, the government was simultaneously slashing funds for public housing. In the 1990s, as federal corrections budgets increased by $19 billion, money for housing was cut by $17 billion, 'effectively making the construction of prisons the nation's main housing program for the poor.'"
By James Carroll
November 8, 2010
http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2010/11/08/the_prison_boom_comes_home_to_roost/

WILL THE fiscal collapse that has laid bare gross inequalities in the US economic system lead to meaningful reforms toward a more just society? One answer is suggested by the bursting of what might be called the "other housing bubble,'' for these two years have also brought to crisis the three-decade-long frenzy of mass imprisonment. If there was a bailout for bankers, can there be one for inmates?

It is commonly observed now that, beginning about 1981, during the Reagan administration, the wealth of a tiny percentage of top-tier earners sky-rocketed, while the wages of the vast majority of Americans went flat. A rapid escalation in the illusory value of homeownership soon followed. But an unseen boom began then, too - in American rates of incarceration, the housing bubble in prisons. A recent issue of Daedalus, the journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, lays it out. In 1975, there were fewer than 400,000 people locked up in the United States. By 2000, that had grown to 2 million, and by this year to nearly 2.5 million. As the social scientist Glenn C. Loury points out, with 5 percent of the world's population, the United States imprisons 25 percent of all humans behind bars. This effectively created a vibrant shadow economy: American spending on the criminal justice system went from $33 billion in 1980 to $216 billion in 2010 - an increase of 660 percent. Criminal justice is the third largest employer in the country.

But while prisons boomed, something else was happening - a trade-off. As sociologist Loic Wacquant says, the government was simultaneously slashing funds for public housing. In the 1990s, as federal corrections budgets increased by $19 billion, money for housing was cut by $17 billion, "effectively making the construction of prisons the nation's main housing program for the poor.'' State budgets took their cues from Washington in a new but unspoken national consensus: poverty itself was criminalized. Although "law and order'' was taken to be a Republican mantra, this phenomenon was fully bipartisan, as Wacquant shows, with the most ferocious growth in the incarceration of poor people occurring in the Clinton years. "Welfare as we know it'' was replaced by punishment. States went prison-crazy.

But the current fiscal crisis has blown a hole through all that razor-wire. State budgets suddenly cannot afford prison systems, which universally choke off funds for education, transportation, and infrastructure. Some states, like California, consider simply releasing prisoners because jail time in mega-prisons costs too much. And, equally suddenly, the whole system has become morally dubious as well. While a famously over-exuberant economy was built on the lies of bankers tied to an artificially inflated housing sector, the prison boom depended on racist and class-biased "criminology'' that was, in fact, steadily debunked by penal experts. Just as irrational assumptions of "risk assessment'' prompted mortgage brokers to understate the risks of home ownership, they led prosecutors, in a parallel noted by Berkeley law professor Jonathan Simon, to grossly overstate the risks to society of huge numbers of defendants. The housing bubble, Simon shows, devastated neighborhoods by littering them with abandoned properties. The prison bubble devastated neighborhoods by depriving them of fathers and husbands.

The American double-binge has come to an end. In Simon's image, the era of the "big house'' is over, whether the McMansion in the suburbs or the mega-prison in a field. Here's the question now: Can the war on the poor be returned to the war on poverty? This is not simply opening gates and letting criminals go free, although the harsh fact must be faced that many convicted of non-violent, mainly drug offenses, never belonged behind bars in the first place. But transferring government over-investment in incarceration to re-investment in education and public housing is the only real correction to the massive "corrections'' mistake we made. Re-inflating "America's punishment bubble'' makes no more sense than trying to re-inflate the housing bubble.

We must all regret the illusions we embraced, and that have been so painfully shattered, but, as Simon argues, "We must also recognize the opportunities that the present disasters have created for reinvigorating our economy and democracy.''

James Carroll's column appears regularly in the Globe.

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2) AWOL Soldier Refusing Deployment Because of Severe PTSD
by: Sarah Lazare, t r u t h o u t | Report
Friday 05 November 2010
http://www.truth-out.org/awol-soldier-refusing-deployment-because-severe-ptsd64831?print

"I am just trying to get help," insisted Jeff Hanks, active duty US Army infantryman, who has served in Iraq and Afghanistan. "My goal in this situation is to simply heal. And they wonder why there are so many suicides." Jeff spoke rapidly over the phone from Virginia, where he, his wife and his two young daughters are staying while he is AWOL from the military. Days earlier, Jeff had walked out of an airport, refusing to board a plane headed for Kuwait, which was to be his first stop on his way back to Afghanistan.

During his mid-September leave from his second combat tour with the 101st Airborne Division, Jeff sought help from Fort Bragg and Fort Campbell military doctors for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and physical wounds sustained in battle. Yet, just as his treatment was getting started, his command interfered, insisting that his military health care providers grant him clearance for immediate deployment. His providers acquiesced, even though they had not completed preliminary testing.

Jeff, who has trouble being in large crowds of people and difficulty controlling his anger, says he is in no state to deploy back to the war from which he is still struggling to heal. The 30 year-old soldier decided that his only choice was to go AWOL. Jeff plans to turn himself into his command at Fort Campbell on Veterans Day, November 11. He will be accompanied by supporters, including members of Iraq Veterans Against the War.

As the war in Afghanistan stretches into its tenth year, now the longest war in US history, Jeff's story has become all too familiar in a military that is overextended and exhausted, pushing soldiers beyond their mental and physical capacities in order to fill the ranks. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have been marked by staggering rates of trauma and suicide. Between 20 percent and 50 percent of all service members deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan have suffered PTSD.[1] Suicide rates among active duty service members are twice as high as that of the civilian population and veterans with PTSD are six times more likely to attempt suicide.[2]

In response to these developments, Iraq Veterans Against the War have launched a campaign - Operation Recovery - calling for an end to the deployment of traumatized troops. This 2,000-strong organization, comprised of veterans and active duty troops who have served since September 11, 2001, insists that Jeff's situation is not isolated, but rather, has become endemic to the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. "Many troops currently deployed to combat theater suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injury [TBI] and Military Sexual Trauma," says Jason Hurd, a former soldier who served in Iraq and is active in the Operation Recovery Campaign. "We find this situation unacceptable and demand an end to these inhumane deployments."

Mental and Physical Wounds

Jeff, who grew up in Beebe, Arkansas, deployed to Iraq in 2008, a tour that eventually earned him a Combat Infantry Badge. During his time in Iraq, Jeff saw "the most brutal things of any of his deployments," he says. "It really bothered me. I think about it all the time." Jeff's Iraq deployment was marked by stressful combat patrols that kept him "always on edge." In 2008, he was witness to the aftermath of a car bomb explosion in a crowded marketplace in Balad, Iraq. It resulted in what he describes as "mass casualties." He saw one little girl, the age of his oldest daughter at the time, who had been gravely injured by the bomb, but still alive. "I can still see that little girl," he says. "I dream about her to this day."

Jeff says that he and others in his unit were not given adequate care for the mental wounds they sustained in battle, with mental health professionals only coming for short visits once a month. He describes his only experience seeing a therapist in Iraq: "It was a total joke," he says. "The guy just sat there and wrote stuff down and nothing ever came of it."

Jeff tells of one person in his unit who developed a severe drinking problem during his tour. "I know it stemmed from stuff he saw in Iraq," says Jeff. The command never pursued mental counseling of any kind for him. They told us not to speak to him and they eventually just kicked him out. He probably didn't get disability pay or anything."

"When I came home from Iraq I changed a lot. I noticed I had a lot of anger problems and I couldn't sleep," says Jeff. Family and friends noticed as well, and Jeff's coldness and distance began to eat away at his marriage, says his wife Christina. "When he came back from Iraq, he would look at me so cold. There was nothing in his eyes. That was the thing that bothered me the most. He was so unlike himself. The old Jeff used to joke around, he used to go out and socialize." The couple separated and Christina was left alone to raise their two daughters.

Jeff says that, back at the Fort Campbell, Kentucky, base where he was stationed, suicide was a widespread problem among the 101st Airborne Division. "There were multiples suicide attempts on base in Kentucky. For a while, we were having people kill themselves every other day," says Jeff.

After serving in Iraq, Jeff was deployed to Afghanistan May 3 of this year. "In Afghanistan, there is more of a constant threat than there is in Iraq," says Jeff, describing a deployment defined by constant mortar attacks, unclear missions and low morale among US soldiers. "We had no clear mission and nothing got done. We basically just sat in a valley waiting to get hit," he says. In one incident, five US soldiers were hit by a roadside bomb. "One died for sure and I don't know about the rest," says Jeff. "We had to sit on base and wait for them to be stabilized. We heard them screaming. It stuck with me. You can never get rid of that sound."

Jeff says that, like Iraq, medical treatment in Afghanistan was scarce and inadequate. "Combat stress people hardly ever came to the base. And it is hard to talk in a situation like that, since you are still in the war and on edge all the time," he says. On top of limited resources, people in Jeff's unit were teased and belittled when they asked for mental or physical health care. One private, who was blown back into a building after a mortar attack, complained of headaches and nausea to his command. "He was made fun of by the command in front of everybody," he says. "There is a saying in the military: What, you got sand in your vagina?" Jeff is certain that this dissuaded many who needed care from seeking it. "It keeps you from seeking help. I didn't seek help. I wanted to, but I would be ostracized."

Three weeks before going on leave from Afghanistan, a mortar went off near Jeff, blowing him up against a wall. He still suffers severe headaches from the incident.

Coming Home

When he went on leave from Afghanistan in mid-September, Jeff began to notice how profoundly he had been affected by his combat experience. He describes being seized with uncontrollable anger, having panic attacks at the slightest stimuli and being unable to relate to his family and loved ones.

Having reconciled with his wife Christina, he had been looking forward to spending time with her and the kids. "I had been so excited to see my family when I came home on leave," he says. "But when I was actually around them, they were just completely overwhelming."

"My daughters see how much Jeff has changed," says Christina. My older one says that daddy is not as nice as he used to be. She says 'I don't like daddy anymore.'"

In one incident, when Jeff and Christina were shopping at Walmart, Jeff was temporarily left alone when his wife went browsing in a different aisle. "I freaked out. There were too many people around me. I couldn't be left alone." Christina says she returned to find Jeff frantically insisting that they leave immediately.

Jeff tells of being afraid to sleep in the same bed as his wife, concerned that he would attack her in his sleep.

One day, Hank was overwhelmed with anger when a police officer "copped an attitude" toward his dad who had asked the officer for directions to a baseball game. "It triggered something in me," says Jeff. "I really wanted to hurt him."

"His mother has called me many times in tears about this," says Christina. "She knows her son and she knows he is different."

Jeff became concerned about whether he was fit for his imminent deployment. "If you have trouble controlling your anger at home, what are you going to do when you are in a situation holding a loaded weapon?" he asks.

In the Raleigh, North Carolina, airport where he was to catch a plane to Kuwait, Jeff had a panic attack in response to a stranger loudly clapping his hands. "I freaked out and was just like I gotta go. I can't do this," he says. Jeff walked out of the airport and checked himself into the Fort Bragg Emergency Room, the nearest military hospital.

Jeff was told by Fort Bragg doctors that they could not diagnose anything beyond the airport panic attack, because he was based out of Fort Campbell. Jeff arranged to meet his Fort Campbell command, where he was listed as AWOL for failing to board his plane. At Fort Campbell, he was passed around to various social workers, who eventually scheduled him an appointment with a mental health care doctor for Monday morning, October 11, at the Fort Campbell Medical Center. However, the Thursday before the appointment was to take place, Jeff's sergeant called him and said he needed to get immediate clearance to go back to Afghanistan that Friday, meaning he would never get to go to his scheduled appointment. Jeff later found out that his command called his doctors and order them to give him immediate clearance.

"I hadn't even been seen by a professional doctor," he says. "All I want is treatment. They were the ones who sent me over there. Now they won't even give me help when I need it." Jeff says he was determined to get help one way or another: "At that point, my only option was to leave."

Jeff has since been diagnosed by two civilian psychiatric professionals as having severe PTSD. He is currently weighing his options for meeting his urgent mental health care needs.

A Widespread Problem

"The redeployment of traumatized troops is a horrible problem," says Ethan McCord, a veteran whose unit was shown in the "Collateral Murder" video distributed by WikiLeaks. "I was denied treatment for the mental and physical wounds I sustained in battle, like so many others."

"In multiple units across all branches we're seeing commanders order service members to the battlefield who just aren't serviceable, says Chantelle Bateman, a former Marine who served in Iraq. "Rather than repairing them, we are sacrificing their long term well-being, their immediate safety and that of the people they are serving with."

As the wars drag on, veterans are demanding an end to the overextension and redeployment of wounded soldiers. On October 7, the ninth anniversary of the Afghanistan war, dozens of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans marched from Walter Reed Medical Center to Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, to announce Operation Recovery. A campaign statement reads: "While we recognize that we must stop the deployment of all soldiers in order to end the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan, we see the deployment of soldiers with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injuries and Military Sexual Trauma as particularly cruel, inhumane and dangerous. Military commanders across all branches are pushing service members far past human limits for the sake of 'combat readiness.' We cannot allow those commanders to continue to ignore the welfare of their troops who are, after all, human beings."

According to the Department of Defense (DoD), even if a military medical professional deems a service member unfit to deploy, a commanding officer can waive medical evaluation and order the service member into combat[3]. While the DoD is not forthcoming about the rate at which this occurs, high rates of PTSD and multiple deployments suggest that cases like Jeff's are common. Almost 30 percent of troops on their third deployment suffer severe mental health problems. By 2008, nearly 33 percent of troops had served two tours to Iraq or Afghanistan, while 10 percent had served three tours, trends that can only increase as the war in Afghanistan reaches its tenth year. Today over 11,000 troops have served six tours, with each tour greatly increasing a service member's chances of developing mental health problems, including PTSD, TBI and combat stress, as well as military sexual trauma, caused by rape and sexual assault from within the ranks.[4]

Top military brass acknowledges that suicides and violent crimes plague the military, with four combat veterans recently killing themselves at Fort Hood, Texas, in one week, one of them a suspected murder-suicide still under investigation. "The emergency issue for me right now is the suicide issue," said Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the highest-ranking person in the US armed forces.

The recently exposed kill team in Afghanistan, in which US troops hunted, killed and mutilated Afghan civilians, collecting their body parts as trophies, involved at least one soldier who was on a cocktail of medications for TBI.

"They are sending troops right back into the situation that traumatized them before they have the time to heal," says McCord. It's ruining our youth in the military. Operation Recovery is trying to stop this."

Jeff remains determined to get the mental and physical health care he needs and is working with the Operation Recovery team of Iraq Veterans Against the War and Courage to Resist to figure out how to meet his immediate health care needs. "Five to ten years from now, these people are not going to care about me. I don't want to be a basket case. I don't want to go to a school play of my kid's and freak out in a big crowd," he says. "I just want help and they want to send me back to war instead of helping me."

Footnotes:

1. Seal, K. H., Bertenthal, D., Maguen, S., Gima, K., Chu, A., and Marmar, C. R. (2008). "Getting beyond 'Don't ask; don't tell': An evaluation of US Veterans Administration post-deployment mental health screening of veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan." American Journal of Public Health, 98, 714-720. See also "Comparisons of PTSD rates" Journal of Traumatic Stress - Volume 23, Issue 1, February 2010.

2. "Suicide and PTSD," Department of Veterans Affairs; Armen Keteyian "Suicide Epidemic Among Veterans," CBS News, November 13 2007; and Mark Thompson "Invisible Wounds: Mental Health and the Military" CNN, August 22 2010.

3. DDI 1332.14(8)c Updated: March 29, 2010.

4. The Alaska Army National Guard: A "Tremendous Shortfall," a report of the Veterans For America National Guard Program, October 15, 2008 and Mark Thompson, "America's Medicated Army" Time, June 5, 2008.

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3) Colombia Workers: Keep Fighting Against Free Trade Agreement
by James Parks
Nov 9, 2010
http://blog.aflcio.org/2010/11/09/colombia-workers-keep-fighting-against-free-trade-agreement/

Over the past 24 years, more than 2,800 trade union members have been killed in Colombia and the government's highly publicized efforts to bring the killers to justice are just a public relations spin to try and convince the United States to sign the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement, Colombian workers said today.

International solidarity is "fundamental," said Tarsicio Muñoz, director of education for the Central Unitaria de Trabajadores (CUT). Speaking during a brown-bag discussion today at the AFL-CIO here in Washington, D.C., Muñoz said workers in the United States must continue to publicly fight against the agreement and help create the political will necessary to prevent it from being signed.

Four of the Colombian unionists spoke last night at Georgetown University, in an event sponsored by the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor.


Some 15 Colombian union leaders took part in today's discussion and will return home this week after spending the past two months in the United States as part of an exchange program sponsored by the AFL-CIO Solidarity Center.

The union leaders said nothing has really changed under the new Colombian leader, President Juan Manuel Santos. Not only is Santos continuing the anti-worker policies of his predecessor, Alvaro Uribe, but he is backing a proposed law that would allow employers to pay young workers between 18 and 28 years of age just 75 percent of the national minimum wage of about $250 a month.

"We are not against trade," but trade has to work for everyone, not just the multinationals and the wealthy, Diaz said. Few workers are actually covered by the labor law, he said.

The government has created so-called associated labor cooperatives that in reality are low-wage, subcontracting agencies controlled by big employers, and not by the workers themselves, said Jaime Diaz Ortiz, secretary-general of SINTRAIMAGRA, a trade union representing agricultural workers. Cooperatives are supposed to be voluntary, worker-managed associations that distribute their collective gains to their members.

Cooperatives in Colombia are employer-controlled and serve as labor agents to avoid a direct hiring arrangement and any responsibility for legally mandated benefits such as health care or pension. Workers in cooperatives are not covered by labor law and are legally ineligible to form or join unions. In Colombia, some 1.5 million workers are in such arrangements.

Ortiz said the government and agricultural companies in Colombia are rapidly increasing the acreage devoted to palm oil and corn-not to produce food for the thousands who are hungry, but to satisfy the demand for biofuels to replace gasoline and coal in the United States and other developed nations. The Colombian unions are calling for direct hiring of workers and the right of agricultural workers to join a union, he said.

Lina Malagon Diaz, an attorney who focuses on labor matters, who also spoke today, said a government tribunal set up by Uribe to reduce violence against union members and bring the killers to justice just is not doing its job. The majority of those responsible for these crimes have not been brought to justice. The judges and prosecutors only go after the "hit men" not the persons who ordered the murders, she said.

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4) Education Protest in London Turns Violent
By SARAH LYALL
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/11/world/europe/11london.html?hp

LONDON - A demonstration against government proposals to cut education spending and steeply increase tuition for university students turned violent on Wednesday as a core of protesters, evidently angling for a fight, attempted to storm the building that houses the Conservative Party.

The protesters scuffled with police officers, set off flares, burned placards and kicked at windows until they shattered.

As of midafternoon, the protesters and police were at a standoff outside the building, Millbank Tower in Westminster. Some protesters had climbed onto a nearby roof terrace. Others continued to try, sometimes successfully, to enter the building, only to be escorted out again by the police. At one point the fire alarm went off and some workers left, but many then returned.

"They seem to be holding the line reasonably well at the moment," a worker inside the building told the BBC by telephone. "We're just trying to get on with our work."

Elsewhere, thousands of people massed near Parliament to condemn the government's education proposals, which would allow universities to charge between £6,000 ($9,600) and £9,000 ($14,400) in tuition a year, up from the current cap of £3,290($5,264). The protest was the largest street demonstration so far against the government's plans, announced last month, to cut public spending by some $130 billion by 2015.

Unions and public-sector employees have promised further demonstrations and strikes in the months to come.

Tuition is a politically sensitive subject in Britain, where universities are heavily financed by the government. Until the late 1990's, university students paid nothing. The Labour government then introduced tuition, eventually raising the maximum rate that universities could charge to the current level.

But the current government, a coalition of Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, has announced plans to cut teaching grants to universities and said it has no choice but to raise tuition to fill the shortfall.

That has presented a dilemma for the Liberal Democrats, the junior, more vulnerable members in the coalition, who made abolishing university tuition altogether a core element of their platform in last spring's general election. Joining with the Conservatives in now proposing increases in tuition has been hard for many Liberal Democrats to swallow, and opened their leader, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, to taunts from their opponents in the Labour Party in the House of Commons Wednesday.

"In April he said that increasing tuition fees to £7,000 a year would be a disaster," Harriet Harmon, the deputy leader of the opposition, said, speaking of Mr. Clegg. "What word would he use to describe fees of £9,000?"

Accusing Mr. Clegg of "going along with Tory plans to shove the cost of higher education on to students and their families," she told him he was like a college freshman who meets "a dodgy bloke" during the first week "and you do things that you regret."

" Isn't it true he has been led astray by the Tories?" she asked.

Mr. Clegg responded that he had had to make compromises because he was part of a coalition, and also because of the country's bad financial situation. But, he said, he had prevailed on the Conservatives to make proposals more "progressive."

Under the plans, students would borrow the tuition from the government, as they do now. But they would not have to begin repaying it until they began earning £21,000 a year, from the current level of £15,000, and would then repay at a rate of nine percent of their income above that level.

People earning more would have to pay a higher rate of interest. The debts would be wiped out after 30 years.

Student leaders said on Wednesday that they would try to recall from Parliament any legislators who have broken their pledge on tuition. Some Liberal Democrats have said they would abstain from the vote on increasing tuition when it comes up in Parliament.

Aaron Porter, president of the National Union of Students, said that the proposed increases were doubly unfair, since they came with cuts in the money the government pays to subsidize teaching at universities.

"We should be clear that the government has asked students to pay three times as much for a quality that is likely to be no better than what they are receiving now, and perhaps worse," he said.

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5) France: Pension Bill Signed Into Law
By STEVEN ERLANGER
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/10/world/europe/10briefs-Paris.html?ref=world

President Nicolas Sarkozy said on Wednesday that he had signed into law his contentious pension-reform bill after the Constitutional Council gave its blessing to the measure. The bill, which prompted strikes and demonstrations for weeks, raises the age by two years both for minimum retirement benefits and for a full pension. The law will go into effect next July. Mr. Sarkozy, left, had made a major issue of the bill as a symbol of his ability to stand firm and to prove to the financial markets that France can reduce its budget deficit.

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6) Atheist Groups Promote a Holiday Message: Join Us
By LAURIE GOODSTEIN
November 9, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/10/us/10atheist.html?ref=us

Just in time for the holiday season, Americans are about to be hit with a spate of advertisements promoting the joy and wisdom of atheism.

Four separate and competing national organizations representing various streams of atheists, humanists and freethinkers will soon be spreading their gospel through advertisements on billboards, buses and trains, and in newspapers and magazines.

The latest, announced on Tuesday in Washington, is the first to include spots on television and cable. This campaign juxtaposes particularly primitive - even barbaric - passages from the Bible and the Koran with quotations from nonbelievers and humanists like Albert Einstein and Katharine Hepburn.

The godless groups say they are mounting this surge because they are aware that they have a large, untapped army of potential troops. The percentage of American adults who say they have no religion has doubled in the last two decades, to 15 percent, according to the American Religious Identification Survey, conducted by researchers at Trinity College in Hartford and released in 2008. But the ranks of the various atheist organizations number only in the tens of thousands.

That is one reason for the multiple campaigns: the groups are competing with one another to gain market share, said Mark Silk, founding director of the Greenberg Center for the Study of Religion in Public Life, which is also at Trinity College.

"There's a competitive environment for 'no religion,' and they're grabbing for all the constituents they can get," Mr. Silk said.

Relying on the largess of a few wealthy atheists, these groups are now capable of bankrolling efforts to recruit and organize a population that mostly has been quiet and closeted.

Annie Laurie Gaylor, co-president of the Freedom from Religion Foundation in Madison, Wis., one of the groups running advertisements, said, "We feel the only way to fight the stigma toward atheists and agnostics is for people to feel like they know them, and they're your neighbors and your friends. It's the same idea as the out-of-the-closet campaign for gay rights."

The groups' leaders say they are trying to marshal secularists at a time when the religious right and politicians who say America is a "Christian nation" are on the march, thanks to the recent midterm elections when not only deficit hawks won seats in Congress, but many religious conservatives as well.

Several of the campaigns are pitched not just to nonbelievers, but also to liberal believers who might be alarmed about breaches in the wall of separation between church and state. The atheist groups believe that people who are religious and politically liberal have more in common with atheists and seculars than they do with religious conservatives.

"We must denounce politicians that contend U.S. law should be based on the Bible and the Ten Commandments," said Todd Stiefel, a retired pharmaceutical company executive who is underwriting most of the ad campaign that cites alarming Scripture passages. "It has not been based on these and should never be. Our founding fathers created a secular democracy."

The most expensive campaign is staged by the American Humanist Association. Mr. Stiefel's foundation donated $150,000 - three-quarters of the cost, part of which goes for television and cable advertisements. That campaign plucks out bracing Scripture passages about women, homosexuality or the wrath of God, like this one from the Old Testament:

"The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open." (from Hosea 13:16, New International Version).

This is contrasted with a quote from Albert Einstein saying that he "cannot imagine" such a God.

The campaigns range from friendly to confrontational. On the confrontational end of the spectrum, American Atheists, which was founded in 1963 by Madalyn Murray O'Hair, will just before Thanksgiving put a billboard on the busy approach to the Lincoln Tunnel from New Jersey heading into New York.

It features a Nativity scene, and the words: "You Know it's a Myth. This Season Celebrate Reason."

David Silverman, the president of American Atheists, said that the idea of the campaign is to reach people who might go to church but are just going through the motions. "We're going after that market share," he said.

The United Community of Reason, a group in Washington, is sponsoring billboards and ads on bus shelters in about 15 cities that say, "Don't Believe In God? Join the Club."

The ads by the Freedom From Religion Foundation take a more inviting approach, with big portraits of some famous and some workaday people, listing their hobbies and professions and giving a punchy, personal declaration of independence from religion. The group, which has been running advertisements on and off since 2007, has spent about $55,000 this year to put up 150 billboards in about a dozen cities.

One, featuring Barbara Wright, a restaurateur in Madison, says: "It's not what you believe, but how you behave."

Another running throughout the South shows Butterfly McQueen, the late actress who played Scarlett O'Hara's maid in "Gone With the Wind." The billboard says, "As my ancestors are free from slavery, I am free from the slavery of religion."

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7) G.M., Days Away from Stock Offering, Posts $2 Billion Profit
By NICK BUNKLEY
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/11/business/11auto.html?ref=business

DETROIT - A week before its initial public offering, General Motors on Wednesday reported its largest quarterly profit in 11 years, showing that the slimmed-down automaker no longer needs huge sales to generate significant earnings.

G.M. said it earned $2 billion in the third quarter, nearly equaling its profit for the first half of 2010. G.M. earned $4.2 billion from January through September.

The company said it expected to report a fourth-quarter profit, at least before accounting for interest and taxes, though "at a significantly lower run rate than each of the first three quarters," and a full-year profit for the first time since 2004.

"As demonstrated by our third consecutive quarter of profitability and positive cash flow, these results continue our significant progress," G.M.'s chief financial officer, Chris Liddell, said in a statement.

The profit was equal to $1.20 a share, after a three-for-one stock split. There is no meaningful year-ago profit comparison because the company emerged from bankruptcy in the third quarter of 2009.

Revenue increased 27 percent from the third quarter of a year ago, to $34.1 billion.

G.M. earned $2.1 billion in North America, the region that had been responsible for most of its losses in recent years. It lost $559 million in Europe. It had $33.5 billion in cash and marketable securities as of Sept. 30, up from $31.5 billion as of June 30.

"We know we have much more work to do," G.M.'s chief executive, Daniel F. Akerson, said on a conference call with analysts and reporters. "We still need to fix Europe. We continue to be vigilant in reducing costs in the enterprise, and we have just started doing a better job marketing our brands to consumers."

Company executives have been traveling this week to meet with potential investors to convince them that the new G.M. - formed by discarding burdensome assets in bankruptcy protection last year - is positioned to consistently generate a profit.

G.M. can earn about $11 billion to $13 billion a year under normal market conditions and as much as $19 billion in boom times, Mr. Liddell said in a video created for would-be investors and posted online.

Three years ago, G.M. needed to sell nearly four million vehicles a year in the United States to break even, but today it can be profitable at roughly half that sales volume, Mr. Liddell said in the video. Hourly labor costs have been cut by more than two-thirds, to $5 billion from $16 billion in 2005, he said.

Through October, G.M. was on pace to sell about 2.2 million vehicles this year in the United States, about half as many as it did in 2005, when it lost $10.6 billion.

It shed four of its eight domestic brands, shutting down Pontiac, Saturn and Hummer and selling Saab to a Dutch company, Spyker Cars. Over all, G.M.'s sales are up 6.6 percent this year, but sales by the brands that are still offered - Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac and GMC - are up 22.1 percent.

New models, including redesigned versions of the Buick Lacrosse sedan and Chevrolet Equinox crossover vehicle, have been well-received by critics and consumers, to the point that G.M. has struggled to keep up with demand. Early sales of a critical new small car, the Chevrolet Cruze, have been brisk, and G.M. is about a month away from introducing the Chevrolet Volt, a plug-in hybrid car that it says represents the company's future direction.

G.M.'s public stock offering, expected to occur Nov. 18 and be worth at least $10.6 billion, will allow the federal government to begin recouping the bulk of its $49.5 billion investment in the automaker. The government plans to initially sell about a third of its 61 percent stake in G.M., in the hope that it can divest the remaining portion as the shares' value increase.

The automaker said last week that shares would be priced from $26 to $29, after a three-for-one split. Other G.M. stakeholders, including a trust that pays health care costs for union retirees, plan to participate in the offering.

Ultimately, the government needs to sell its shares for an average of about $44 to break even. The Treasury Department already has recovered $7.4 billion from G.M., including interest and dividends, and is slated to get an additional $2.1 billion after the offering from a deal in which G.M. has agreed to repurchase preferred shares held by the Treasury Department.

Separately, G.M. confirmed in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission that it removed one of the underwriters for its public offering, because an employee of the bank distributed an "unauthorized email" containing information about the offering. G.M. did not identify the bank, but UBS is no longer listed as an underwriter on G.M.'s amended registration forms. G.M. said that the email might violate S.E.C. rules, but that nonetheless, "we do not believe that we will be subject to any material liability."

G.M.'s third-quarter profit surpasses the $1.7 billion earned in the same period by the Ford Motor Company, the only Detroit automaker to avoid bankruptcy. Ford has earned $6.3 billion so far this year.

Chrysler, which filed for bankruptcy protection a month sooner than G.M. and is 8 percent owned by the federal government, said on Monday that it lost $84 million in the third quarter but posted a third consecutive operating profit. Chrysler expects to have a public stock offering in late 2011.

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8) [NatAssembly2008:2550] Lynne Stewart Letter to Prison Official
For Immediate Release:
To:
Harley Lappin, Director,
Federal Bureau of Prisons
320 First Street NW
Washington, DC 20534-0002
November 6, 2010
Via Email

Re: Lynne Stewart's Place of Incarceration

Dear Mr. Lappin,

Lynne Stewart has been a leading member of the National Assembly to End U.S. Wars and Occupations since its formation in 2008. We are a peace and social justice organization that promotes massive, legal, peaceful protests on important social issues. Tens of thousands of Americans have proudly participated in our peaceful activities.

Our leadership body consists of 40 local, state and national organizations, which have worked together to promote a peace agenda. Lynne has served diligently on our National Coordinating Committee and on our Administrative Committee from the beginning.

We were extremely disturbed to learn of Lynne's conviction on several counts of aiding and abetting terrorism. Knowing Lynne and the facts of the case, we believe that her conviction was unjust. We fully support Lynne's effort to appeal this conviction, win a reversal and return to the legal profession that she has served as an attorney for more than 30 years.

Many of us have known Lynne for decades - as far back as when she was an honor student at Jamaica High School and a School Librarian in the New York City public schools. Hers has been a life of service to poor people and to all of humanity who seek a better life filled with opportunity and freedom from fear and want.

In Lynne's entire lifetime she has never been associated with any acts of violence. Indeed, Federal District Court Judge John Koeltl stated that Lynne was a credit to the legal profession and a credit to the country. We fully concur.

Today, while Lynne pursues her appeal she is asking that if she should fail in this effort, she serve her sentence at the minimum security prison facility at Danbury, Connecticut. We are fully aware of Lynne's fragile physical condition and her numerous health problems, from hypertension and diabetes, to a recent operation for breast cancer.

Lynne poses no threat to any human being and has already requested that her many educational credentials and skills be placed at the service of her fellow prison inmates.

We ask that you give your most serious consideration to Lynne's request for future placement at the Danbury facility, a location that is relatively close to her husband, children and many grandchildren.

Sincerely,

Jerry Gordon, Secretary
Jeff Mackler, Marilyn Levin and Jerry Gordon, National Co-Coordinators
Coordinating Committee, National Assembly to End U.S. Wars and Occupations*
Zaineb Alani, Author of The Words of an Iraqi War Survivor & More
Alan Benjamin, San Francisco Labor Council
Tom Bias, Northwest New Jersey Peace Fellowship
Joe Callahan, Twin Cities Coalition (IPAC)
Michael Carano, Member, Teamsters Union
Steve Carlson, Iraq Moratorium
Colia Clark, Chair, Richard Wright Centennial Committee; Grandmothers for
Mumia Abu-Jamal
Greg Coleridge, Coordinator, Northeast Ohio Anti-War Coalition (NOAC);
Economic Justice and Empowerment Program Director, Northeast Ohio American Friends Service Committee (AFSC)
Victor Crews, Wasatch Coalition for Peace and Justice (of Northern Utah)
Alan Dale, Iraq Peace Action Coalition (Minnesota)
Donna Dewitt, President, South Carolina AFL-CIO
Jamilla El-Shafei, Founder, The Kennebunks Peace Department; Co-Founder
and Organizer, Stop-Loss Congress
Mike Ferner, President, Veterans for Peace
Chris Gauvreau, CT United for Peace
Paul George, Peninsula Peace and Justice Center (California)
Drew Goebel, Campus Antiwar Network (CAN)
Jerry Gordon, National Assembly Secretary
Connie Hammond, Progressive Peace Coalition (Ohio)
John Harris, Greater Boston Stop the Wars Coalition
Monadel Herzallah, President, Arab American Union Members Council
Jonathan Hutto, Navy Petty Officer; Author of Anti-War Soldier; Co-Founder of
Appeal for Redress
David Keil, Framingham State College Professional Association (FSCPA), Mass.
State College Association; Recording Secretary, Teachers Association,
National Education Association
John Kirkland, Philly Against War
Bryan Koulouris, Socialist Alternative
Tom Lacey, California Peace and Freedom Party
Jim Lafferty, Executive Director, National Lawyers Guild, Los Angeles
Paul LeBlanc, International Socialist Organization
Bill Leumer, Workers Action
Marilyn Levin, Planning Committee, Boston United for Justice with
Peace
Joe Lombardo, Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace; Northeast Peace and Justice
Coalition
Jeff Mackler, Founder, San Francisco Mobilization for Peace, Jobs and
Justice
Logan Martinez, Green Party of Ohio
Mary Nichols-Rhodes, Progressive Democrats of America/Ohio Branch
Pat O'Brien, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom
Bill Onasch, Kansas City Labor Against the War
John Peterson, National Secretary, Workers International League
Millie Phillips, Socialist Organizer
Dan Piper, CT United for Peace
Andy Pollack, Al-Awda NY
Adam Ritscher, Northland Anti-War Coalition
Chris Robinson, Northwest Greens
Carole Seligman, Active in Campaign to Get Junior ROTC Out of San
Francisco Schools
Peter Shell, Thomas Merton Center Antiwar Committee, Pittsburgh
Mark Stahl, Rhode Island Mobilization Committee to Stop War and Occupation
Mark Stansbery, Columbus Campaign for Arms Control (Middle East Peace
Committee, Iran Action Network, and Alternatives to Militarism Project)
Lynne Stewart, Lynne Stewart Organization/Long Time Attorney and Defender
of Constitutional Rights
Wesley Strong, Solidarity
Bonnie Weinstein, Bay Area United Against War
Phil Wilayto, Defenders of Freedom, Justice and Equality (VA)
(* descriptions for purpose of identification)

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9) Cuba Denounces 'Virtual' Castro Plot in New Game
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
[Can you imagine what the U.S. do if Cuba put out a video game to assassinate Obama? They'd probably declare war and bomb the tiny island into smithereens...bw]
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2010/11/10/technology/AP-CB-TEC-Cuba-Call-of-Duty.html?src=busln

Filed at 2:25 p.m. EST

HAVANA (AP) - Cuba harshly criticized a new video game in which U.S. special operations soldiers try to kill a young Fidel Castro, saying Wednesday that the violent role-playing glorifies assassination and will turn American children into sociopaths.

The island's state-run media also took a dig at the CIA's real-life efforts to do in the island's revolutionary leader, who has survived dozens, perhaps hundreds of attempts on his life.

"What the United States couldn't accomplish in more than 50 years, they are now trying to do virtually," said an article posted on Cubadebate, a state-run news website.

The brouhaha surrounds one of the most highly anticipated shoot-em-up video games of the year, "Call of Duty: Black Ops," which went on sale in the United States on Tuesday. The game, from California-based Activision Blizzard Inc., takes players on secret missions to American Cold War enemies such as the Soviet Union, Cuba, Vietnam and Laos.

The Cuban operation is one of the first challenges players face in the ultra-realistic game. The mission takes place with John F. Kennedy in the White House in the months leading up to the 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion and the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, which brought the world to the brink of nuclear Armageddon.

Players must shoot their way through the colonial streets of Havana on a mission to assassinate Castro, then a young revolutionary who had recently overthrown dictator Fulgencio Batista. In a twist, they end up killing a body-double and are sent to prison in Siberia.

Cuba said the game attempts to legitimize murder and assassination in the name of entertainment

"This new video game is doubly perverse," the Cubadebate article said. "On the one hand, it glorifies the illegal assassination attempts the United States government planned against the Cuban leader ... and on the other, it stimulates sociopathic attitudes in North American children and adolescents."

Messages left by The Associated Press with Activision were not immediately returned Wednesday.

The article said psychological studies show that violent video games can produce anti-social behavior in the young because players must take an active part in the bloodletting in order to win. Watching violent movies, by contrast, is a more passive pursuit and thus less likely to produce copycat behavior.

Christopher J. Ferguson, a psychology professor at Texas A&M International University who studies video-game violence, said such studies are off-base.

"There is really a lot of, obviously, rhetoric and politics going on," he told the AP. "At this point, there is no evidence that video games, violent or otherwise, cause harm to minors."

Ferguson said youth violence in the United States "is at its lowest level in 40 years," yet studies show that as many as 95 percent of young men have played violent video games at some point in their lives.

Video games are becoming increasingly big business, with development budgets rivaling those of big-screen movies. Players are also getting older. Game industry group Entertainment Software Association says the average game player in the U.S. is 34 years old.

"Call of Duty: Black Ops" is only for sale to players 17 years old and older. It is not the first military-style shooter game to generate controversy this year.

"Medal of Honor" from Electronic Arts Inc. was banned from U.S. military bases after it went on sale last month because it let players take on the role of Taliban fighters shooting U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan. Electronic Arts later removed the option.

Cuba says Castro has survived more than 600 attempts on his life. Others count the number of serious plots in the dozens, including CIA attempts to poison his pen and his trademark cigars; as well as efforts to recruit a former young German lover and to hide a gun in a TV camera.

American intelligence agents once allegedly hired a hotel worker to slip a fatal pill into Castro's milkshake. Like all the others, the plot was unsuccessful.

Castro is now 84 years old, having outlived the majority of the enemies of his generation, both inside Cuba and out. He turned over the presidency to his brother Raul - first temporarily, then permanently - in 2006, but remains leader of the Cuban Communist Party.

"I think I hold the dubious record of having been the target of more assassination attempts than any politician, in any country, in any era," Castro said in a July 1998 speech, drawing laughter from the crowd. "The day I die, nobody will believe it."

Despite the quip, the assassination attempts, as well as Washington's 48-year trade and travel embargo, have helped fuel a siege mentality on the island even two decades after the Cold War ended.

The location of the homes of both Fidel and Raul Castro remain state secrets, and state media rarely publish their schedules ahead of time.

When Cuba held real-life war games last year, a senior general said the island still had to guard against an invasion from the north, a notion President Barack Obama later dismissed as preposterous.

AP Technology Writer Barbara Ortutay in New York contributed to this report.

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10) Supreme Court to rule on famed death penalty case
By Jon Hurdle
Sun, Jan 17 2010
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE60G15920100117



PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court is expected on Tuesday to issue its latest decision on the fate of Mumia Abu-Jamal, arguably America's most famous death-row inmate, convicted of slaying a Philadelphia policeman, a crime he denies committing.

The court is due to rule on an appeal by the Philadelphia district attorney who is seeking to have Abu-Jamal executed and bring an end to a decades-long legal saga the inmate, a former journalist, wrote about while in prison.

Abu-Jamal, now 55, was convicted in 1982 of killing officer Daniel Faulkner on December 9, 1981. He has become an international cause celebre for the anti-death penalty movement whose supporters argue strenuously he did not receive a fair trial.

His backers say he was framed by police, that prosecution witnesses were coerced into false testimony and that ballistics evidence shows Abu-Jamal did not shoot Faulkner but that the murder was committed by another man who fled the scene.

Supporters also claim that Abu-Jamal, who is black, was the victim of a racist and notoriously pro-prosecution trial judge, the now-deceased Albert Sabo, who was overheard to say, "Yeah, and I'm going to help them fry the nigger," according to an affidavit by a court stenographer.

Faulkner's widow, Maureen, and Philadelphia's Fraternal Order of Police oppose any clemency for Abu-Jamal, arguing his conviction has been upheld repeatedly by numerous courts, including the Supreme Court, over three decades.

They note that bullet fragments taken from Faulkner's body match the ammunition from the gun carried by Abu-Jamal who was earning his living as a taxi driver at the time of the killing.

If the Supreme Court rules in his favor, Abu-Jamal would get a new jury trial on the sentencing, but not his conviction.

But a defeat is likely to send the case back to an appeals court, whose ruling would be based on a new Supreme Court decision on jury instructions in another case, said his attorney, Robert R. Bryan.

Abu-Jamal has been in solitary confinement on death row since the conviction, and has been held since 1995 in a western Pennsylvania prison where he has written books and contributed to international journals and radio shows.

Outside the United States, Abu-Jamal's backers include the human rights group Amnesty International, which in 2000 called for a new trial, arguing his conviction and sentence followed "contradictory and incomplete evidence" in a trial that failed to meet minimum international standards of justice.

(Editing by Philip Barbara)

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11) Family Disputes Police Claims In Fatal Shooting of Derrick Jones
By Kevin L. Jones
Posted: 4:58 pm PST November 9, 2010Updated: 5:24 am PST November 10, 2010
http://www.ktvu.com/news/25690418/detail.html

OAKLAND, Calif. -- An officer-involved shooting in Oakland had the unarmed victim's family invoking the name of Oscar Grant Tuesday as they argued the incident raised new questions about police use of force.

The Monday night shooting of an Oakland man by two OPD officers pitted witness testimony against police reports of the incident.

Police said in a press conference Tuesday afternoon that 37-year-old Derrick Jones was trying to kill a woman Monday night when officers responded.

But local witnesses said it was the woman who was trying to hurt Jones and that it started in the barbershop he owned along Bancroft Ave.

"She was up in his barber shop and would not come out. Tearing up his shop, hitting him with a cane, doing all this and he kept trying to avoid the situation," said nearby resident Ronald Mack.

Police said the situation escalated and moved a few feet down to the front of this Laundromat about 9:30 p.m. Monday.

"This man choked her, and struck her repeatedly, and slammed her head repeatedly," said OPD Chief Of Investigations Jeffery Israel during the press conference.

Two responding officers located the suspect and asked if he was Derrick Jones. Police said Jones replied 'No,' and then began to run. At least one officer fired his Taser, but did not hit Jones.

"During the foot chase the suspect was seen grabbing toward his waistband this occurred several times," said Israel. "At one point the officer did see a metal object in the man's hand."

The two officers pursued and chased Jones to a nearby narrow street.

"He turned around and then placed his hands once again down by his waistband. And the entire time the officers are yelling for the man to get his hands up," said Israel. "Officers, then believing that they were in a life threatening situation, discharged their firearm striking the suspect."

Jones' sister Tonya Saheli said her brother, who is married with a young daughter, was trying to stay clean and succeed with his own business.

"He was a very talented young man," said Saheli. "He was a good guy. He got in some trouble of course, but overall he did nothing wrong to deserve to be shot numerous times."

Police said Jones was on parole and had prior arrests for guns, drugs, domestic violence and resisting arrest.

The deputy chief did not know the relationship between Jones and the woman he was arguing with.

Police initially declined to state if Jones had a weapon at the press conference, but later admitted Jones was unarmed.

Officers did find a metal object on him, but police would only say it was not a gun or knife.

When asked if Saheli felt her brother's shooting was murder, she replied, "Murder and we will prove that."

Jones' other family members say the shooting was unjustified and unbelievable, considering it happened on the heels of the Johannes Mesherle sentencing, who was found guilty of killing Oscar Grant in 2009. Grant was African American and at the time of the shooting, he was unarmed and lying face down on the ground.

Tuesday night, dozens of people gathered in front of Jones' Kwik Cuts Barber Shop to pay tribute to the owner.

"My brother was a family guy. Just had a daughter," said Frank Jones. "She was only two years old. He was the nicest, sweetest dude. He wouldn't hurt a fly."

People hung up banners by the barber shop that called for a stop to police killings.

"Never in a trillion years would I have imagined I would be on the other end," said Saheli. "I kept saying you know they need to sue police for wrongful death, I just kept saying wrongful death and here we are."

"We haven't even gotten over Grant and here we go again," said Samuel Jones, the victim's uncle.

Copyright 2010 by KTVU.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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12) Obama Administration Claims Unchecked Authority To Kill Americans Outside Combat Zones
November 8, 2010
http://www.aclu.org/national-security/obama-administration-claims-unchecked-authority-kill-americans-outside-combat-zone

Federal Court Hears Arguments Today In ACLU And CCR Case Challenging Administration's Claimed Authority To Assassinate Americans It Designates Threats

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: (212) 549-2666; media@aclu.org

WASHINGTON - The Obama administration today argued before a federal court that it should have unreviewable authority to kill Americans the executive branch has unilaterally determined to pose a threat. Government lawyers made that claim in response to a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) charging that the administration's asserted targeted killing authority violates the Constitution and international law. The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia heard arguments from both sides today.

"Not only does the administration claim to have sweeping power to target and kill U.S. citizens anywhere in the world, but it makes the extraordinary claim that the court has no role in reviewing that power or the legal standards that apply," said CCR Staff Attorney Pardiss Kebriaei, who presented arguments in the case. "The Supreme Court has repeatedly rejected the government's claim to an unchecked system of global detention, and the district court should similarly reject the administration's claim here to an unchecked system of global targeted killing."

The ACLU and CCR were retained by Nasser Al-Aulaqi to bring a lawsuit in connection with the government's decision to authorize the targeted killing of his son, U.S. citizen Anwar Al-Aulaqi. The lawsuit asks the court to rule that, outside the context of armed conflict, the government can carry out the targeted killing of an American citizen only as a last resort to address an imminent threat to life or physical safety. The lawsuit also asks the court to order the government to disclose the legal standard it uses to place U.S. citizens on government kill lists.

"If the Constitution means anything, it surely means that the president does not have unreviewable authority to summarily execute any American whom he concludes is an enemy of the state," said Jameel Jaffer, Deputy Legal Director of the ACLU, who presented arguments in the case. "It's the government's responsibility to protect the nation from terrorist attacks, but the courts have a crucial role to play in ensuring that counterterrorism policies are consistent with the Constitution."

The government filed a brief in the case in September, claiming that the executive's targeted killing authority is a "political question" that should not be subject to judicial review. The government also asserted the "state secrets" privilege, contending that the case should be dismissed to avoid the disclosure of sensitive information.

The lawsuit was filed against CIA Director Leon Panetta, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and President Barrack Obama in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Attorneys on the case are Jaffer, Ben Wizner, Jonathan Manes and Jennifer Turner of the ACLU; Kebriaei, Maria LaHood and Bill Quigley of CCR; and Arthur B. Spitzer of the ACLU of the Nation's Capital. Co-counsel in Yemen is Mohammed Allawo of the Allawo Law Firm and the National Organization for Defending Human Rights (HOOD).

For more information on the case, including fact sheets and legal papers, visit: www.aclu.org/targetedkillings and www.ccrjustice.org/targetedkillings

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13) Round Two: Third Circuit Court Panel Re-Hears Issue of Abu-Jamal's Death Penalty on Orders of Supreme Court
By Dave Lindorff
Wed, 11/10/2010 - 10:39 - Anonymous
http://www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/300

The three-decades-long murder case of Philadelphia journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal, who has sat in solitary in a cramped cell on Pennsylvania's death row for 28 years fighting his conviction and a concerted campaign by the national police union, the Fraternal Order of Police, to execute him, was back in court Tuesday, with a three-judge federal Appeals Court panel reconsidering its 2008 decision backing the vacating of his death sentence, on orders of the US Supreme Court.

The three judges, Reagan-nominated Anthony Sirica, Bush Sr.-nominated Robert Cowen, and Clinton-nominee Thomas Ambro, two years ago agreed with a lower court judge, Federal District Judge William Yohn, that the jury in Abu-Jamal's 1982 trial had been provided with a poorly-worded and confusing jury ballot form and flawed instructions from the trial judge during the penalty phase. The confusion, they decided, could have misled jurors into thinking, incorrectly, that in order to consider a mitigating factor against voting for the death penalty, all 12 of the jurors would have had to agree to it. In fact, under the law, any individual juror can decide that there is a mitigating factor against a death sentence. Only aggravating factors that would argue for a death sentence have to be found by all members of the jury to be applicable.

The 2008 ruling was widely seen as a big victory for Abu-Jamal and his attorney Robert R. Bryan, as it meant either that he would avoid execution, instead serving a life sentence without possibility of parole, or that the Philadelphia district attorney would have to request a new penalty phase trial, with a new jury hearing arguments for and against imposition of a new death sentence.

Last January, however, the US Supreme Court threw a wrench into the case, ruling in an Ohio murder case involving Frank Spizak, a neo-Nazi (he sported a Hitler mustache at his trial) once sentenced to death for random killings of Jews and blacks, that a lower court order vacating his death sentence had been in error. That case had also focussed on the confusing language of a jury ballot form, and of the judge's instructions to the jury.
Mumia Abu-Jamal, on Pennsylvania's death row for 29 yearsMumia Abu-Jamal, on Pennsylvania's death row for 29 years

The high court, which also had pending before it at the time an appeal by the Philadelphia DA of the Third Circuit decision in Abu-Jamal's case, sent that case back down to the Third Circuit, asking Judges Sirica, Cowen and Ambro to review their decision in light of its decision in the Spizak case.

At Tuesday's hour-long hearing, Assistant DA Huge Burns tried to make the case that the issues in the Abu-Jamal jury instructions and ballot form were "almost identical" to those in the Spizak case. Abu-Jamal's attorney, Widener University law professor Judith Ritter, who had argued the same issue of a confusing jury instruction and ballot form successfully before the same judges as an assistant counsel in the 2007 hearing, made the counter-argument that the problems with the judge's instructions and the jury form in the Abu-Jamal case were "fundamentally different" from those in the Spizak case.

The three judges seemed, in their initial remarks and in their questions, to be leaning towards the defense view.

As Judge Cowen asked, following DA Burns' argument, "Doesn't the jury form in Spizak significantly differ from our form? I found six differences." At another point in the hearing, he said, "Aren't the cases different in more than degree, but in kind?"

Judge Ambro noted that in the Abu-Jamal case, Judge Albert Sabo had told the jurors, "Remember again, your verdict must be unanimous." Ambro observed, "That's sort of a general over-arching instruction." He and Cowen both noted that the Spizak jury had never been told their decision had to be unanimous, while the word "unanimous" was used repeatedly in the Abu-Jamal case, both in the judge's verbal instructions and on the jury form.

Burns tried to counter that while "unanimous" may not have been used in the Spizak case, the jury was addressed as a single entity, at least implying unanimity might be required for the finding of a mitigating factor.

Attorney Ritter homed in on the differences between the Spizak and Abu-Jamal cases, saying, "In Spizak, you had an absence of instructions regarding mitigation that could have confused the jury. Here (in the Abu-Jamal case), it's not silent. Look at number 2 (in the jury ballot form). It starts, 'We the jury have found unanimously...'"

Ritter argued for Abu-Jamal alone at this hearing following the surprise departure of Abu-Jamal's lead attorney Robert R. Bryan only days before the hearing. Abu-Jamal reportedly asked Bryan last week to simply attend the hearing, but to not address the court, leaving that job to Ritter. Bryan says Abu-Jamal apparently felt that since Ritter had won the argument in 2008, she was a better choice than Bryan himself, who many Abu-Jamal supporters felt was somewhat disorganized and less than incisive at the 2008 hearing. Bryan says his proposal that he make introductory remarks and respond to any questions from the judges at the conclusion of the hearing was rejected by Ritter and Abu-Jamal, so he submitted a brief to the court asking to be removed from the case. The judges agreed to his request last Friday. It is the second time Abu-Jamal has dumped his lead attorney on the eve of a critical hearing. In 2001, just as Judge Yohn was discussing dates for a hearing on his habeas appeal, Abu-Jamal fired lead attorney Leonard Weinglass and assisting attorney Dan Williams, angry over a book on the case that Williams had just published. He replaced them with two attorneys, Eliot Grossman and Marlene Kamish, who had little or no death penalty law experience, dropping them later in favor of Bryan.

In the end, while Presiding Judge Sirica was harder to read, Judges Cowen and Ambro, at least, didn't seem to have been convinced by Burns. "You haven't met Miss Ritter's argument," Cowen said. "She pointed out some differences between the (Spizak and Abu-Jamal) forms that are significant."

After which Judge Ambro said, "For example, the word 'unanimous' was not used in Spizak."

Judge Cowen added, "In our case, 'unanimity' was used time and time again, and in quite close proximity to where you find things about mitigating circumstances."

Of course, even if the three-judge panel decides to reaffirm its 2008 decision, the DA's office will almost certainly appeal again to the Supreme Court, where the same five judges who ruled against Spizak and referred the Abu-Jamal case back to the Third Circuit panel could vote to reverse the Third Circuit. In that event Abu-Jamal would have his death penalty reinstated.

If the high court agreed with the Third Circuit, or if it chose not to take the case and let the ruling stand, then the DA would have to decide whether to leave Abu-Jamal with a life sentence, or to ask for a new penalty phase trial, which would take place back in state court.

The defense is hoping for a retrial of the penalty, since that would at least offer Abu-Jamal the chance to introduce new evidence regarding the shooting of Police Officer Daniel Faulkner. For example, the prosecution made a big point of highlighting the testimony of two witnesses, prostitute Cynthia White and taxi driver Robert Chobert, who both described the shooting of Faulkner by Abu-Jamal as an "execution," with Abu-Jamal standing astride the fallen cop and firing repeatedly at him at nearly point-blank range. The problem with that story is that only one bullet--the one that struck Faulkner in the middle of his forehead--hit the officer, yet no bullet impacts can be seen in crime scene photos of the area on the sidewalk where Faulkner lay, and police investigators reported finding no such marks either.

A test of a gun similar to Abu-Jamal's, firing similar metal-clad, high-velocity Plus-P ammunition at a section of old sidewalk concrete, proves that such impact marks should have been clearly visible. While a rehearing of the penalty phase of the trial would not be able to directly raise the issue of guilt, in a penalty phase re-hearing, the defense could be expected to present evidence that the "execution" scenario presented to the jury by the prosecution simply couldn't have happened, and witnesses would likely be called to challenge the story. That in turn would raise the risk, for the prosecution, that evidence -- or a witness recantation -- could open the door to a new challenge to Abu-Jamal's conviction.

Even if the Third Circuit or the US Supreme Court rules against Abu-Jamal, and his original death sentence is reinstated, it is not the end of the road in this long-running case, however.

Back on December 18, 2001, when Federal District Judge Yohn tossed out Abu-Jamal's death penalty, he noted in his ruling that he had "mooted" four other defense claims of unconstitutional flaws in his death penalty hearing, on the grounds that there was no need to examine these, since he had already decided to vacate the penalty. As Abu-Jamal defense team attorney Christina Swarns notes, "We have an absolute right to have those claims considered."

In other words, if the death penalty is reaffirmed, Abu-Jamal will be back before Judge Yohn again, where other powerful and compelling objections to the way his initial trial was conducted will have to be reviewed. Among the complaints:

* Prosecutor Joseph McGill's use of a statement made by Abu-Jamal when he was only 15, quoting Chinese Communist Party Chairman Mao Tse-tung that "Power flows from the barrel of a gun," in an effort to sway jurors towards imposing a death penalty.

* The rushing of the case and the inadequacy of Abu-Jamal's legal counsel, attorney Anthony Jackson, with Judge Sabo ordering the penalty phase hearing to begin the day following the jury's guilty verdict, and Jackson not requesting a delay to allow him to prepare. As a result, Jackson called not one character witness to allow Abu-Jamal to develop a case for mitigating factors.

* Prosecutor McGill improperly advised jurors, with the approval of the judge, that they were "not asked to kill anybody," because there would be "appeal after appeal after appeal." The Supreme Court and the Third Circuit, as well as the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, have all repeatedly overturned death sentences because of prosecutors making similar statements to juries, on the grounds that it tends to remove from jurors any sense of the moral consequences of their profound decision. (McGill himself had a death penalty he had won overturned for this exact reason.)

* Finally the defense made the claim that the prosecution withheld form the defense information it had that local police and the FBI had called off years of surveillance of Abu-Jamal after concluding that, as the FBI put it in a note calling off monitoring of Abu-Jamal, ""In March 1973, per bureau instructions, captioned subject (Abu-Jamal) was deleted from ADEX and no additional investigation conducted concerning his activities. Sources, however, have continued to report periodically on COOK (Abu-Jamal's family name) and, although he has not displayed a propensity for violence, he has continued to associate himself with individuals and organizations engaged in Extremist activities."

As Asst. DA Burns has said, "This case will go on for years."

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14) Facing Austerity, Britain Unveils Welfare Cuts
By SARAH LYALL and ALAN COWELL
November 11, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/12/world/europe/12britain.html?hp

LONDON - A day after violent protests against government proposals to cut education spending and steeply increase tuition for university students, the government unveiled proposals on Thursday for welfare reforms that could penalize Britons deemed to be work-shy and stir further resistance.

In one particularly contentious proposal, unemployed people would be stripped of a $100-a-week job-seekers allowance for up to three years if they turn down three job offers - a proposal that drew protests from civic groups. Some economists called the sanctions the harshest ever imposed by a British government.

"Changes to the benefits system proposed today will expose people to the risk of destitution," said Kate Wareing from Oxfam, the aid organization. "Removing benefits and leaving people with no income will result in extreme hardship for them and their families."

In Parliament, Iain Duncan Smith, the minister for works and pensions, said he had planned reforms to provide a single, universal payment to replace around 30 different forms of housing, unemployment and tax credits supposed to help jobless and disabled people.

"There will be no losers," he said. Referring to some 4.5 million people who were receiving unemployment benefits even before the global economic crisis, he said that the British population included "a group of people who have been left behind, even in periods of growth."

"These reforms are about bringing them back in," he said.

Like the proposed cuts in education spending, the welfare measures are part of a vast austerity program announced last month by the coalition government of Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, cutting public spending by $130 billion by 2015.

The students' protest on Wednesday was the largest street demonstration against the plans, and the most visible expression of the turmoil surrounding them. Unions and public employees have promised more demonstrations and strikes as details of the cuts become clear.

The debate in Britain, pitting advocates of austerity against those favoring a greater emphasis on economic growth, mirrors similar divisions in the United States and in many parts of Europe, where the impact of the global economic crisis is testing the ability of many people to cope with reductions in generous benefits.

Only weeks ago, France was locked in strikes and street protests over a government plan to raise the minimum retirement age to 62 from 60. Some Britons are now questioning whether their government's austerity program will inspire similar unrest.

"This protest - in both its peaceful and more violent dimensions - is a sign of a country unafraid to fight back, for the first time in a long time," Nina Power, a lecturer in philosophy, wrote in The Guardian newspaper,

Speaking at a center for homeless people in north London on Thursday, Mr. Duncan Smith said the authorities would support "those who are vulnerable and unable to work" and would ensure that "for those out of work who are capable of working, our reforms mean it will always pay you to take a job."

But, he warned, "this is a two-way street."

"We expect people to play their part, too," Mr. Duncan Smith said. "Under this government, choosing not to work if you can work is not an option."

The reforms are to be introduced from 2013 to 2018.

Mr. Duncan Smith estimated that the reforms would save up to $2.4 billion a year in reduced benefit fraud and administrative costs. And, he said, they would also benefit 2.5 million households by providing higher entitlements, while the number of households surviving solely on government benefits could be reduced by around 300,000.

Douglas Alexander, the opposition Labour spokesman on work and pensions issues, said in Parliament: "If the government gets this right, we will support them." But he argued that with unemployment high, there were few jobs available. "Without work, this won't work," he told a television interviewer.

The British government offers an array of benefits ranging from allocations to the disabled to burial payments. But some proposed cuts - most notably in benefits paid to parents to help with the cost of raising their children - have already run into passionate opposition.

The current system is complex and, according to the authorities, prone to not only to fraud but also to what Mr. Duncan Smith called a "dependency culture."

A complex set of tax rules also means that people who resume work after long periods of unemployment end up with less money in their pockets, Mr. Duncan Smith said.

Reforms in the benefits system - a cornerstone of Britain's welfare state - began under the previous Labour government and have been marked by efforts among politicians to secure consensus.

But Thursday's announcement came with Britain focused on the potential social impact of the government's promise to introduce radical changes

On Wednesday, protesters trying to the storm the building that houses the Conservative Party, at 30 Millbank, in Westminster, scuffled with police officers, set off flares, burned placards, threw eggs, bottles and other projectiles, and shattered windows. A small group of demonstrators, some with ski masks obscuring their faces, climbed to the roof of a nearby building, waving anarchist flags and chanting "Tory scum."

In response, the Conservative prime minister, David Cameron, attending the G-20 economic summit in South Korea on Thursday, promised a stern response. "What is not part of our democracy is that sort of violence and lawbreaking," he said. "It's not right. It's not acceptable and I hope that the full force of the law will be used."

An estimated 52,000 people from across the country also massed near Parliament on Wednesday to condemn the government's education proposals, which would allow universities to charge £6,000, or $9,600, to £9,000, or $14,400, in tuition a year, up from a cap of £3,290, or $5,264.

Tuition is a politically sensitive subject in Britain, where universities are heavily subsidized by the government. Until the late 1990s, when the Labour government introduced tuition, students paid nothing. But the current government has announced plans to cut teaching grants to universities and said it had no choice but to raise tuition.

Sarah Lyall reported from London, and Alan Cowell from Paris.

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15) Louisiana: No Excuse for Shooting in Storm's Aftermath, Jurors Told
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
November 10, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/11/us/11brfs-NOEXCUSEFORS_BRF.html?ref=us

The chaotic aftermath of Hurricane Katrina offers no excuse for the actions of five current or former police officers being tried in the fatal police shooting of a man whose burned body was found in a car in September 2005, a federal prosecutor told jurors Wednesday. In her opening statement, Tracey Knight, the assistant United States attorney, said Lt. Dwayne Scheuermann and Officer Gregory McRae burned the body of Henry Glover to destroy evidence in the shooting death of the 31-year-old man days after the hurricane devastated New Orleans. Ms. Knight suggested that Katrina emboldened the officers. "They thought no one was watching and no one would care about Henry Glover, but they were wrong," she told jurors.

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16) Teacher's Death Exposes Tensions in Los Angeles
By IAN LOVETT
November 9, 2010
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/10/education/10teacher.html?ref=education

LOS ANGELES - Colleagues of Rigoberto Ruelas were alarmed when he failed to show up for work one day in September. They described him as a devoted teacher who tutored students before school, stayed with them after and, on weekends, took students from his South Los Angeles elementary school to the beach.

When his body was found in a ravine in the Angeles National Forest, and the coroner ruled it a suicide, Mr. Ruelas's death became a flash point, drawing the city's largest newspaper into the middle of the debate over reforming the nation's second-largest school district.

When The Los Angeles Times released a database of "value-added analysis" of every teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District in August, Mr. Ruelas was rated "less effective than average." Colleagues said he became noticeably depressed, and family members have guessed that the rating contributed to his death.

On Monday, a couple hundred people marched to the Los Angeles Times building, where they waved signs and chanted, demanding that the newspaper remove Mr. Ruelas's name from the online database.

"Who got the 'F'? L.A. Times," chanted the crowd, which was made up mostly of students, teachers and parents from Miramonte Elementary School, where Mr. Ruelas taught fifth grade.

The value-added assessments of teachers - which use improvements in student test scores to evaluate teacher effectiveness - has grown in popularity across the country with support from the federal Department of Education, which has tied teacher evaluations to the Race to the Top state-grant program.

But their use remains controversial. Teachers' unions argue that the method is unfair and incomplete and have fought its implementation across the country.

The Los Angeles Times compiled its database using seven years of standardized test scores obtained through a public records request.

A. J. Duffy, president of the union, United Teachers Los Angeles, which helped organize Monday's event, held up Mr. Ruelas as an example of the problems with value-added assessments.

"Value-added assessments are a flawed system," Mr. Duffy said. "This was a great teacher who gave a lot to the community."

The newspaper has refrained from commenting on the issue beyond a statement issued after Mr. Ruelas's death: "The Times continues to extend our sympathy to Mr. Ruelas's family, students, friends and colleagues. The Times published the database, which is based on seven years of state test scores in the L.A.U.S.D. schools, because it bears directly on the performance of public employees who provide an important service, and in the belief that parents and the public have a right to judge the data for themselves."

Teachers' unions have largely opposed moves away from the tenure system, in which layoffs are based on seniority, not performance.

Recently, in Washington, where the school chancellor, Michelle Rhee, used comprehensive teacher evaluations to fire hundreds of "ineffective" teachers, their unions poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into a campaign to unseat her main supporter, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty. Mr. Fenty lost the Democratic primary in September, and Ms. Rhee resigned the next month.

Despite opposition from the teachers union, Education Secretary Arne Duncan came out in support of greater transparency in teacher evaluations, and the New York City Department of Education is also preparing to release data reports on its teachers, pending the result of a court hearing later this month.

In Los Angeles, where the school district has moved toward significant reforms, like handing control of some chronically low-performing campuses to charter school operators, members of the school board have increasingly pushed to implement value-added assessments.

"Not including value-added measures is not acceptable," said Yolie Flores, a board member of the Los Angeles Unified School District. "But it also has to be part of a more comprehensive system of evaluation."

Eric A. Hanushek, a senior fellow at Stanford's Hoover Institution who studies school accountability systems, said the value-added assessments should be combined with other factors. But he said the tenure system did not offer any meaningful evaluation of teacher performance.

"Now that The L.A. Times has published these scores, I think the genie is out of the bottle, and parents are going to want this information," Mr. Hanushek said. "I presume the union's opposition is a last effort of the teachers' union to say that you should never evaluate teachers. This is their attempt to take a tragic situation and turn it into one that they can use for their own political advantage."

But Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, argued that reliance on value-added assessments actually hindered efforts to carry out comprehensive teacher evaluations.

"Our union has proposed a comprehensive system of teacher evaluation that more than 50 districts have adopted," Ms. Weingarten said. "The good work we're doing trying to make comprehensive teacher evaluations will actually be hurt by this fixation on a value-added system."

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