Saturday, November 12, 2016

BAUAW NEWSLETTER, SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 2016

A #NoDAPL Map
By Carl Sack
Cartographer, Graduate Student
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/a-nodapl-map_us_581a0623e4b014443087af35


When I decided to become a cartographer, I didn’t just want to make pretty and useful maps. I became a cartographer to make maps that change the world for the better. Right now, no situation needs this kind of map more than the current drama unfolding around the Dakota Access Oil Pipeline’s crossing of the Missouri River.
Thousands of Native Americans and their allies have gathered on unceded Sioux land delimited by the 1851 Treaty of Fort Laramie to try and stand in the way of the “black snake” that could poison the Standing Rock Reservation’s water supply. Many have noted that the pipeline corridor was repositioned from its original route north of Bismarck after white citizens spoke up against the threat a spill would pose to their drinking water ― a threat duly recognized by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Yet the Corps failed its federal mandate for meaningful consultationwith the Standing Rock Tribe before signing off on a route that moved the pipeline to their doorstep.
This is not to say that the good citizens of Bismarck and Mandan were wrong to protest. What’s wrong with the picture above isn’t the routing of the pipeline. What’s wrong is that the pipeline project exists to begin with. Some say it’s a good alternative to dangerous oil-by-rail shipments of Bakken crude. Those are bad too. We don’t need more fossil fuels making it to market to be burned and burn up the planet in turn (I am typing this in Wisconsin as the temperature nears 70 on the first of November). We do all need clean water. As the Sioux say, mni wiconi (”water is life”).
To keep to its construction schedule, the pipeline company, Energy Transfer Partners, has met nonviolent water protectors with private security guards using attack dogs in a scene reminiscent of 1963 Birmingham. It has worked hand-in-glove with law enforcement and the National Guard to create a militarized response straight out of apartheid South Africa or occupied Ireland. It has locked up hundreds of protesters in wire cages like those used early on at Guantanamo Bay. Those on the ground fear something like another Kent State, yet they keep coming, and the worldwide solidarity has gone viral.
Yet for all that, when I went out to camp with the water protectors at Oceti Sakowin on October 13, I had to rely on a friend’s hand-drawn sketch posted to Facebook for directions to the camp. If you Google “NoDAPL map,” you’ll find few maps available to provide visual context for the unfolding drama. The most popular seems to be the company’s own very-small-scale route map, showing a dotted line over highlighted counties on a generic road map backdrop. 
This kind of view erases the people affected by the pipeline – quite literally, by covering over their communities with a hot pink gradient fill. It doesn’t tell you that all of Turtle Island (North America) is Indian Country, or that the project runs headlong into international treaties signed between the U.S. and various tribes and then unilaterally violated by Congress. It doesn’t show you where the frontline communities have set up camp to fight back (and here I realize that I should also make a map of the Bold Iowa resistance camp), or where the pipeline company, spurred on by the internal pressure of their $3.8 billion investment, has bulldozed sacred ground, or where exactly a pipeline break would endanger the drinking water of millions downstream.
There was one other better map of the project that I found and was partially inspired by ― a relatively simple yet powerful map by Jordan Engle (with help from Dakota Wind) published by The Decolonial Atlas. It uses the indigenous placenames for key waterways and sites in the vicinity of the Sacred Stones Camp (translations are on the blog post linked to above). It is oriented to the south, challenging the typical viewpoint of Western maps. This map has truly not gotten the attention it deserves.


Maps like this are great, and there should be more of them. However, I felt strongly that there still needed to be a map of the area that would look familiar to most viewers and orient them to the important geographic facts of the struggle. I don’t claim that none of those facts are currently in dispute, but I recognize that all maps (even road maps overlaid with pink polygons) take a position and create knowledge based on the cartographer’s point of view. Maps have great power, and it’s a power anyone with pen and paper or a computer can wield.
My geographer hero Zoltan Grossman once declared, “The side with the best maps wins.” The pipeline company has an army backed by state power to do its bidding. The water has its scrappy protectors. It’s time we put the latter on the map.
The original blog post is available here. To download a large-scale printable version of the map, click here.

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Join us on November 15!
Native leaders have called for a day of action and protest on Nov 15 at Army Corps of Engineers offices around the country. Will you join us in a massive wave of resistance?

RSVP here

standwithstandingrock
Carole,
I want to propose a radical idea: We don't owe Trump or his supporters anything but resistance. And it's time to show them they will get nothing from us - not an inch of compromise, not an ounce of permission. It's time to get out your wooden shoes1 and dismantle the machinery of oppression.

Before the election, indigenous leaders called for a national day of action on November 15 targeting Army Corps of Engineers offices around the country. In solidarity with the ongoing protest and encampment to block the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota, the idea was to dial up pressure on the Obama administration and all parts of the federal government that permit - literally and figuratively - the destruction of sacred sites, the desecration of water, and the poisoning of our climate

It was and is a good plan. But after the election of Donald Trump, it's more. It's our first big opportunity to make it clear that we, the movement for climate justice and life on earth, have the power to shut down and dismantle the institutions pushing death and injustice. Over 100 events are already being organized with thousands of people planning to attend. Will you join us? Click here to watch the video and RSVP to join us in the streets on November 15.
NODAPL video
The next four years are not going to be easy. I first came up with the idea for 198 Methods after reading This is an Uprising2 and re-reading Gene Sharp's From Dictatorship to Democracy.3 I thought, a few weeks ago, that we were facing a moment of moral clarity on climate change. I thought we needed smart, confrontational strategies to highlight the friction between people who say they want to act on climate and the actual action this moment requires of us.4 I thought we needed a lot more people, organizations, and mobilizations - especially ones led by women, indigenous people, people of color, LGBTQ, and marginalized folks.

I still think we need all those things. But as many others have argued and are arguing still,5 that work is more visceral now because Trump's America is a fascist America. Reports of hate speech, threats, and attacks on Muslims, women, and people of color are on the rise.6 Our actions need to evolve accordingly from demonstrations to active resistance.

Put on your safety pin and be an ally7 - but do more. It's time to think hard about what you're willing to risk and about what is truly at risk now. It's time to join the resistance not because it's smart or strategic - but because the center has fallen and we need to protect each other now.

I know a lot of us are scared, but this isn't a moment to negotiate. I'm asking you to get used to the feeling of insecurity caused by refusing to obey unjust laws. This isn't the first time, nor will it be the last time, that we are asked to stand between the actions of our government and the lives of our neighbors and planet.

November 15 is a moment of solidarity. Join us in the streets and be part of the resistance.
Solidarity,

Drew and the 198 Methods crew.

1 - https://badspot.us/Sabotage.html
2 - http://thisisanuprising.org/
3 - http://www.aeinstein.org/books/from-dictatorship-to-democracy/
4 - http://www.vox.com/2016/10/4/13118594/2-degrees-no-more-fossil-fuels
5 - http://www2.nybooks.com/daily/s3/nov/10/trump-election-autocracy-rules-for-survival.html
6 - http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/day-1-in-trumps-america-highlights-racist-acts-violent-threats-w449787
7 - http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/11/11/safety-pins-brexit-donald-trump-election/93639074/

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Please sign this petition urging prison administrations to lift the ban on the SF Bay View newspaper. Help us to expose the unjust censorship of prisoners speaking out against injustice.

Prison administrations in several states have banned prisoners from receiving the SF Bay View National Black Newspaper.The SF Bay View is a grassroots paper that has published articles by and about prisoners for decades, giving them the opportunity to discuss the many injustices they experience.

The bans began in July 2016 in an attempt to silence those preparing for the nationwide prison strike that began on September 9. On that day, thousands of prisoners stopped working in protest of a host of prison injustices, including toxic work conditions, overcrowdedness and extreme deadly heat, and to demand that the 13th Amendment to the Constitution be amended. The 13th Amendment, which purportedly abolished slavery, includes this escape-clause: "except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted."

Add your name.

Since the strike began, dozens of prisoners have reportedly been placed in solitary confinement and/or transferred to other distant facilities. At the Kinross Correctional Facility in Michigan, guards have forced prisoners to work by attacking them with weapons and tear gas. In Texas prisons, there has been a spate of suicides.

Articles sent from prisons to the SF Bay View reporting these conditions have been continuously intercepted.

Denying access to the SF Bay View violates prisoners' rights to information, education, and communication with their broader communities. It's a violation of freedom of speech and press.

Sign the petition by clicking here.

After signing the petition, please use the tools on the next webpage to share it with your friends.

This work is only possible with your financial support. Please chip in $3 now. 

-- The RootsAction.org Team

P.S. RootsAction is an independent online force endorsed by Jim Hightower, Barbara Ehrenreich, Cornel West, Daniel Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, Naomi Klein, Bill Fletcher Jr., Laura Flanders, former U.S. Senator James Abourezk, Coleen Rowley, Frances Fox Piven, Lila Garrett, Phil Donahue, Sonali Kolhatkar, and many others.

Background:
Un-Ban the Bay View!
13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
Voice of Detroit: Prisoners Teargassed, Zip-Tied, Left Out in Rain


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Black Children Punished for Anthem Protests


After young 11 and 12-year-boys of the Beaumont Bulls football knelt during the anthem to protest police violence against Black youth, their local executive board canceled their entire football season, suspended the coaching staff, and threatened to arrest their parents if they attended any future games, practices or events.
For these young Black kids, the plight of injustice in America is their own. Instead of supporting the boys and their protests, their executive board and league officials abandoned them. The board has decided to strip these kids of the team that they love to punish them for asking for basic rights and dignities. This is about the board reinforcing that police violence in our communities doesn’t matter, that our issues aren’t important and that speaking onthem makes you subject to punishment.
These kids are brave for refusing to give in to the executive board and for standing against injustice. We need to support the fight of these children and show them that their protest is heard.
To the Beaumont Bulls Executive Board,
Immediately reinstate the Beaumont Bulls coaching staff, apologize to the boys and their parents, and allow them to finish their season.
Sincerely,
We need to support the fight of these children and show them that their protest is heard. 

http://act.colorofchange.org/sign/black-children-punished-anthem-protests/?sp_ref=239333099.176.176140.e.558213.2&referring_akid=6495.1114646.XlU2ME&source=em_sp


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Bay Area United Against War Newsletter

Table of Contents:

A. EVENTS AND ACTIONS

B. ARTICLES IN FULL



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A. EVENTS AND ACTIONS

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Come on out for the Leonard Peltier Art Show on Sunday, November 13 from 12 PM – 4:30 PM @ The Saxon Pub, 1320 S Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX.



Please make a donation online and/or pledge to donate monthly or mail your donation to ILPDC, PO Box 24, Hillsboro, OR 97123
Peltier Flag
Click on Image for Details
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Shout Out to Austin, TX

Come on out for the Leonard Peltier Art Show on Sunday, November 13 from 12 PM – 4:30 PM @ The Saxon Pub, 1320 S Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX.
Join us for art and music with all proceeds donated to the "Free Leonard Peltier Defense Fund!" Come see original artwork by Leonard Peltier and other art donated by local artists.
Featuring Music From:
Walt Wilkins
Johnny Nicholas
Scott H. Biram
and other guests.
SILENT AUCTION from 12:00 – 5:00 PM
Items include a "Texas Guitar" signed by Willie Nelson and much more.
Hosted By:
Connie Nelson
Karianne Boushee (Leonard's niece)


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SURJ compiled this extensive list of activities coming up to oppose DAPL.  
I hope everyone has heard about the big demonstration early on Tuesday, November 15.  
There are lots of other events.  Read on and come out!



SURJ Bay Area logoNEWSFLASH
Bay Area Chapter


NOVEMBER 3, 2016SURJ Bay Area has compiled this list of activities this month, Native Heritage Month, to support the #NoDAPL struggle against the Dakota Access Pipeline as well as local Indigenous struggles. Please participate & share! Here are 10 things you can do to support Standing Rock now.

dallasgoldtooth090416.jpg
                                                                                                           Photo by Dallas Goldtooth


November 9 - 12
Bay Area #NoDAPL Smudge Down the Banks

Host: Medicine Nation
November 9th launches a National Week of Action to "Smudge Down The Banks" in solidarity with Standing Rock Sioux Tribe against Dakota Access Pipeline. San Francisco is home to Wells Fargo World HQ, one of the largest investors in DAPL. Through the power of smudge, we are peacefully and prayerfully demanding the financial industry's complete divestment of funds from DAPL.
Location: Wells Fargo World HQ, 420 Montgomery Street, San Francisco   More info       National Event page 


Sunday, November 13 • 9:00 am - 2:00 pm
What Does Land Mean to Us?
Host: Sogorea Te Land Trust
In this meeting we discuss what it looks like to be an ally or accomplice to the work of people from the land you occupy. Ariel Luckey will be presenting, we will have a discussion about Dakota Access Pipeline and Sacred Sites right here that are in danger of being destroyed. Breakfast and light lunch will be provided.
Location: Intertribal Friendship House, 523 International Blvd, Oakland  More Info


NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION!
Tuesday, November 15 • 6:30 am
Bay Area Stands for No Dakota Access Pipeline
Host: Idle No More SF Bay, Diablo Rising Tide, 350.org
National Day of Action called by Indigenous Environmental Network and 350.org
Sunrise Ceremony at San Francisco Civic Center Plaza followed by solidarity action and rally at the Army Corps of Engineers office, demanding they revoke the permits to bore under the Missouri River and complete a full Environmental Impact Statement.
Location: San Francisco Civic Center Plaza (Polk & Grove) to US Army Corps of Engineers, 1455 Market St. @ 11th St. (just south of Van Ness), San Francisco  More info 


Saturday, November 19 • 8:00 - 11:00 pm
Thanks Taken: Rethinking Thanksgiving

Host: La Peña and the Free Land Project
Thangs Taken: Rethinking Thanksgiving is an annual cultural arts event that brings Native and non-Native artists, activists and communities together to explore the complex history of Thanksgiving and to acknowledge the legacy of U.S. colonialism and genocide against Native Americans.
Location: La Peña Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley More Info
There's also a program for kids & families, 10:00 - 11:00 am More info




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January 20, 2017 at 7am
Freedom Plaza
1355 Pennsylvania Ave NW
(14th St and Pennsylvania Ave)
Washington, D.C.


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Chelsea Manning Support Network
Chelsea faces charges related to suicice attempt
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View it in your browser.

Chelsea Manning ends 5 day hunger strike after Army agrees to medical treatment

Chelsea Manning ended her hunger strike today (Sept 13) after the Army finally agreed to treatment for her gender dysphoria.
"This is all that I wanted – for them to let me be me," said Chelsea Manning.
"But it is hard not to wonder why it has taken so long and why such drastic measures were needed in order to get this help that was recommended."
Chelsea was shown a memo today stating she will receive gender-reassignment surgery under the DoD's new policy affecting transgender service members.
If this occurs, Manning will be the first trans prisoner in the US to receive this treatment, setting a precedent that could benefit thousands of transgender inmates.
"This medical care is absolutely vital for Chelsea. It was the government's refusal to provide her with necessary care that led her to attempt suicide earlier this year," said Chase Strangio, Chelsea's attorney at the ACLU, "and it was all the more troubling when she became subject to an investigation and possible punishment in connection with the suicide attempt.
We hope that the government recognizes that charging Chelsea with the crime of being denied essential health care is outrageous and drops those charges." Read more here

Daniel Ellsberg, Michael Stipe protest
inhumane charges against Chelsea

After years of inhumane treatment from the Army, Chelsea Manning attempted to take her life on July 5th, 2016. 
If convicted of these absurd "administrative offenses", Chelsea could face indefinite solitary confinement for the rest of her prison term (30 years).
Daniel Ellsberg: "I stand with Chelsea Manning. I hope you will too."
Michael Stipe: "I support human rights for all people. As an American patriot it is my duty to stand with Chelsea Manning... This is unjustifiable. It is unfair, and it needs to be stopped." Read more and watch the videos
Chelsea will face a disciplinary board later this month, and could very likely be charged for her own suicide attempt. 

Chelsea can continue to be a powerful voice for reform, but we need your help to make that happen. Help us support Chelsea in prison, maximize her voice in the media, continue public education, fund her legal appeals team, and build a powerful movement for presidential pardon.

Please donate today!

https://co.clickandpledge.com/sp/d1/default.aspx?wid=38591

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Letter from a prisoner involved in the current prison strike:
Texas Prison Officials retaliate against me
for protesting prison slavery
By Keith "Malik" Washington

        On October 5, 2016, I was transferred to the Telford Unit from the Coffield Unit. At Coffield, I had become the target of a coordinated effort by the State of Texas to retaliate against me for organizing a campaign that seeks to end prison slavery.
        There are elements and individuals within the Texas Criminal Justice System that don't want to acknowledge the humanity of prisoners. The Slave Plantation mentality is deeply embedded in the hearts and minds of the oppressor and the oppressed.
        Telford, where I am now housed, is the home of a horrible Solitary Confinement control unit. I was sent to this control unit in order to be neutralized.
        Prison officials are also using their new Social Media Ban to punish me when my friends or supporters post any kind of information about me. It is crucially important that you continue to share with the world what is happening to me and to so many other imprisoned Freedom Fighters who are trapped inside Amerikan prisons. This attempt to silence prisoner voices and the voices of our free-world supporters is a gross violation of the U.S. Constitution.
        Journalist Raven Rakia, who resides in New York City, actually traveled to Texas to interview me for an upcoming exposé she is working on. Texas prison officials denied her access to me!! I just cannot describe to you how dangerous this situation is becoming.
        I attempted to place Raven Rakia and other media correspondents and friends on my visiting list. Prison officials denied receiving any updated visitation forms from me!
        Sisters and brothers, I cannot fight these people without your help. I am asking you to call the Telford Unit in New Boston, Texas -- 903-628-3171 -- and demand that I be granted visits from media correspondents, friends, and lawyers. I am requesting that media correspondents and lawyers attempt to visit me and make contact with me so that I can relay to the public how Texas has framed me and isolated me.
        Our struggle begins with amending the 13th amendment: we must abolish Prison Slavery in Amerika!
        Furthermore, we must confront and question law enforcement agencies who attempt to demonize and criminalize #Black Lives Matter! The murdering of Black people by the police must be addressed.
        Prisoner Rights activist Laura Whitehorn said, "Rather than slaughtering black people outright, the prison system carries out genocide through political repression."
        Sisters and brothers, I am taking a risk by communicating these words to you. I am asking you to do something to help me shed light on the nature of the Texas Criminal Justice System.
        Dare to struggle, dare to win! All power to the people!

Keith H. Washington #1487958
Telford Unit
3899 State Hwy 98
New Boston, TX 75570-5669

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Defying the Tomb: Selected Prison Writings and Art of Kevin "Rashid" Johnson featuring exchanges with an Outlaw Kindle Edition

by Kevin Rashid Johnson (Author), Tom Big Warrior (Introduction), Russell Maroon Shoatz(Introduction)

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http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B013RU5M4S



Join the Fight to Free Rev. Pinkney!

Click HERE to view in browser

http://www.iacenter.org/prisoners/freepinkney-1-28-15/

UPDATE:

Today is the 406th day that Rev. Edward Pinkney of Benton Harbor, Michigan
languishes in prison doing felony time for a misdemeanor crime he did not
commit. Today is also the day that Robert McKay, a spokesperson for the
Free Rev. Pinkney campaign, gave testimony before United Nations
representatives about the plight of Rev. Pinkney at a hearing held in
Chicago. The hearing was called in order to shed light upon the
mistreatment of African-Americans in the United States and put it on an
international stage. And yet as the UN representatives and audience heard
of the injustices in the Pinkney case many gasped in disbelief and asked
with frowns on their faces, "how is this possible?" But disbelief quickly
disappeared when everyone realized these were the same feelings they had
when they first heard of Flint and we all know what happened in Flint. FREE
REV. PINKNEY NOW.

Please send letters to:
Marquette Branch Prison
Rev. Edward Pinkney N-E-93 #294671
1960 US Hwy 41 South
Marquette, MI 49855

Please donate at http://bhbanco.org (Donate button) or send checks to BANCO:
c/o Dorothy Pinkney
1940 Union St.
Benton Harbor, MI 49022

BACKGROUND:

On December 15, 2014 the Rev. Edward Pinkney of Benton Harbor, Michigan was thrown into prison for 2.5 to 10 years. This 66-year-old leading African American activist was tried and convicted in front of an all-white jury and racist white judge and prosecutor for supposedly altering 5 dates on a recall petition against the mayor of Benton Harbor.

The prosecutor, with the judge's approval, repeatedly told the jury "you don't need evidence to convict Mr. Pinkney." And ABSOLUTELY NO EVIDENCE WAS EVER PRESENTED THAT TIED REV. PINKNEY TO THE 'ALTERED' PETITIONS. Rev. Pinkney was immediately led away in handcuffs and thrown into Jackson Prison.

This is an outrageous charge. It is an outrageous conviction. It is an even more outrageous sentence! It must be appealed.

With your help supporters need to raise $20,000 for Rev. Pinkney's appeal.

Checks can be made out to BANCO (Black Autonomy Network Community Organization). This is the organization founded by Rev. Pinkney.  Mail them to: Mrs. Dorothy Pinkney, 1940 Union Street, Benton Harbor, MI 49022.

Donations can be accepted on-line at bhbanco.org – press the donate button.

For information on the decade long campaign to destroy Rev. Pinkney go to bhbanco.org and workers.org(search "Pinkney").

We urge your support to the efforts to Free Rev. Pinkney!Ramsey Clark – Former U.S. attorney general,
Cynthia McKinney – Former member of U.S. Congress,
Lynne Stewart – Former political prisoner and human rights attorney
Ralph Poynter – New Abolitionist Movement,
Abayomi Azikiwe – Editor, Pan-African News Wire<
Larry Holmes – Peoples Power Assembly,
David Sole – Michigan Emergency Committee Against War & Injustice
Sara Flounders – International Action Center

MESSAGE FROM REV. PINKNEY

I am now in Marquette prison over 15 hours from wife and family, sitting in prison for a crime that was never committed. Judge Schrock and Mike Sepic both admitted there was no evidence against me but now I sit in prison facing 30 months. Schrock actually stated that he wanted to make an example out of me. (to scare Benton Harbor residents even more...) ONLY IN AMERICA. I now have an army to help fight Berrien County. When I arrived at Jackson state prison on Dec. 15, I met several hundred people from Detroit, Flint, Kalamazoo, and Grand Rapids. Some people recognized me. There was an outstanding amount of support given by the prison inmates. When I was transported to Marquette Prison it took 2 days. The prisoners knew who I was. One of the guards looked me up on the internet and said, "who would believe Berrien County is this racist."

Background to Campaign to free Rev. Pinkney

Michigan political prisoner the Rev. Edward Pinkney is a victim of racist injustice. He was sentenced to 30 months to 10 years for supposedly changing the dates on 5 signatures on a petition to recall Benton Harbor Mayor James Hightower.

No material or circumstantial evidence was presented at the trial that would implicate Pinkney in the purported5 felonies. Many believe that Pinkney, a Berrien County activist and leader of the Black Autonomy Network Community Organization (BANCO), is being punished by local authorities for opposing the corporate plans of Whirlpool Corp, headquartered in Benton Harbor, Michigan.

In 2012, Pinkney and BANCO led an "Occupy the PGA [Professional Golfers' Association of America]" demonstration against a world-renowned golf tournament held at the newly created Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course on the shoreline of Lake Michigan. The course was carved out of Jean Klock Park, which had been donated to the city of Benton Harbor decades ago.

Berrien County officials were determined to defeat the recall campaign against Mayor Hightower, who opposed a program that would have taxed local corporations in order to create jobs and improve conditions in Benton Harbor, a majority African-American municipality. Like other Michigan cities, it has been devastated by widespread poverty and unemployment.

The Benton Harbor corporate power structure has used similar fraudulent charges to stop past efforts to recall or vote out of office the racist white officials, from mayor, judges, prosecutors in a majority Black city. Rev Pinkney who always quotes scripture, as many Christian ministers do, was even convicted for quoting scripture in a newspaper column. This outrageous conviction was overturned on appeal. We must do this again!

To sign the petition in support of the Rev. Edward Pinkney, log on to: tinyurl.com/ps4lwyn.

Contributions for Rev. Pinkney's defense can be sent to BANCO at Mrs Dorothy Pinkney, 1940 Union St., Benton Harbor, MI 49022

Or you can donate on-line at bhbanco.org.

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State Seeks to Remove Innocent PA Lifer's Attorney! Free Corey Walker!


The PA Office of the Attorney General (OAG) filed legal action to remove Corey Walker's attorney, Rachel Wolkenstein, in November 2014. On Tuesday, February 9, 2016 the evidentiary hearing to terminate Wolkenstein as Corey Walker's pro hac vice lawyer continues before Judge Lawrence Clark of the Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas in Harrisburg, PA.

Walker, assisted by Wolkenstein, filed three sets of legal papers over five months in 2014 with new evidence of Walker's innocence and that the prosecution and police deliberately used false evidence to convict him of murder. Two weeks after Wolkenstein was granted pro hac vice status, the OAG moved against her and Walker.

The OAG claims that Wolkenstein's political views and prior legal representation of Mumia Abu-Jamal and courtroom arrest by the notorious Judge Albert Sabo makes it "intolerable" for her to represent Corey Walker in the courts of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Over the past fifteen months the OAG has effectively stopped any judicial action on the legal challenges of Corey Walker and his former co-defendant, Lorenzo Johnson against their convictions and sentences to life imprisonment without parole while it proceeds in its attempts to remove Wolkenstein.

This is retaliation against Corey Walker who is innocent and framed. Walker and his attorney won't stop until they thoroughly expose the police corruption and deliberate presentation of false evidence to convict Corey Walker and win his freedom.

This outrageous attack on Corey Walker's fundamental right to his lawyer of choice and challenge his conviction must cease. The evidence of his innocence and deliberate prosecutorial frame up was suppressed for almost twenty years. Corey Walker must be freed!

Read: Jim Crow Justice – The Frame-up Of Corey Walker by Charles Brover

Go to FreeCoreyWalker.org to provide help and get more information.


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TAKE ACTION: Mumia is sick


Judge Robert Mariani of the U.S. District Court has issued an order in Mumia's case, granting Mumia's lawyers Bret Grote and Robert Boyle's motion to supplement the record. 

New medical records documenting Mumia's deteriorated condition from February and March, will be presented June 6th. Judge Mariani has also instructed the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections to provide any updates and changes in DOC hep C treatment and policies which affect the plaintiff's treatment.

Calling into Prison Radio, Mumia noted: 

"My friends, my brothers, it ain't over 'til it's over, but there is some motion. It means that we're moving closer to hopefully some real treatment not of my symptoms, but of my disease. I thank you all for being there. And freedom is a constant struggle. I love you all. From what used to be death row, this is Mumia, your brother."
 

Mumia remains quite ill. While stable, his curable hepatitis C is still active and progressive. The only treatment Mumia has received over the last 14 months to this day is skin ointment and photo therapy. He has not received the medically indicated treatment for hep C, the very condition that put him in the Intensive Care Unit in March 2015. 


Hepatitis C is a progressive disease that attacks Mumia's organs, skin and liver. Unless the court orders the new hepatitis C treatment - one pill a day for 12 weeks, with a 95% cure rate - Mumia's health will remain at serious risk.

Before the court is the preliminary injunction motion, which demands immediate medical care.

The exhaustion of administrative remedy and the procedural hurdles make it extremely difficult for people in prison to actually get their grievances heard through the review process. The Prison Litigation Reform Act was passed specifically to create these very almost insurmountable barriers to access to the courts.

Please read the New Yorker article, Why it is Nearly Impossible for Prisoners to Sue Prisons.

In Abu-Jamal vs. Kerestes, one very telling point was when the DOC's Director of Medical Care, Dr. Paul Noel, took the stand. He said that he had never testified before in court! He has worked for the DOC for over a decade.   

That meant that no prisoner had access to adversarial cross examination. Before Mumia's day in court in late December 2015, no prisoner ever had the opportunity to expose the PA DOC's blatant lies. Lies so bold that Dr. Noel disavowed his own signed affidavit, and in court he stated that he "did not sign it and it was false and misleading". The knowingly false and fabricated document was put in the record by Laura Neal, Senior DOC attorney.

Take Action for Mumia


Call prison officials to demand immediate treatment!

Dr. Paul Noel-Director of Medical Care, DOC
717-728-5309 x 5312

John Wetzel- Secretary of DOC
717+728-2573 x 4109

Dr. Carl Keldie-Chief Medical Officer, Correct Care Solutions
800-592-2974 x 5783

Theresa DelBalso-Superintendent, SCI Mahanoy
570-773-2158 x 8101
    Tom Wolf, PA Governor 
    Phone  717-787-2500
    Fax 717-772-8284                     
    Email governor@pa.gov

    Sign the Petition now to demand Mumia's right to life-saving hepatitis C care.
    Help Mumia's lawyers prepare to demand access to Mumia's medical records from court!
    Thank you for keeping Mumia in your heart and mind,
    Noelle Hanrahan
    Director, Prison Radio

    SUPPORTERS OF MUMIA ABU-JAMAL, AND FREE QUALITY HEALTH CARE FOR ALL:
    The Oasis Clinic in Oakland, CA, which treats patients with Hepatitis-C (HCV), demands an end to the outrageous price-gouging of Big Pharma corporations, like Gilead Sciences, which hike-up the cost for essential, life-saving medications such as the cure for the deadly Hepatitis-C virus, in order to reap huge profits. The Oasis Clinic's demand is:

    PUBLIC HEALTH, NOT CORPORATE WEALTH!


    WE DEMAND:

    PUBLIC HEALTH, NOT CORPORATE WEALTH!

    IMMEDIATE AND FREE TREATMENT FOR ALL HCV-INFECTED PRISONERS!

    NO EXECUTION BY MEDICAL NEGLECT!

    JAIL DRUG PROFITEERS, FREE MUMIA!

    This message from:
    Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal
    PO Box 16222 • Oakland CA 94610 • www.laboractionmumia.org
    06 January 2016

    Mumia Is Innocent!  Free Mumia!
     

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    Imam Jamil (H.Rap Brown) moved

    Imam Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin (H. Rap Brown) was moved by bus from USP Canaan in Waymart, PA. to USP Tucson, Arizona.  His mailing address is:  USP Tucson United States Penitentiary P.O. Box Tucson, AZ. 85734  (BOP number 99974555)

    Sign the Petition:

    DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, THE Bureau of Prisons, The Governor of Georgia

    We are aware of a review being launched of criminal cases to determine whether any defendants were wrongly convicted and or deserve a new trail because of flawed forensic evidence and or wrongly reported evidence. It was stated in the Washington Post in April of 2012 that Justice Department Officials had known for years that flawed forensic work led to convictions of innocent people. We seek to have included in the review of such cases that of Imam Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin. We understand that all cases reviewed will include the Innocence Project. We look forward to your immediate attention to these overdue wrongs.
    ASAP: The Forgotten Imam Project
    P.O. Box 373
    Four Oaks, NC 27524
    Signed,
    Luqman Abdullah-ibn Al-Sidiq

    https://www.causes.com/actions/1671495-the-forgotten-imam-jamil-abdullah-al-amin-h-rap-brown?utm_campaign=post_mailer%2Fcampaign_update.cb_71432&utm_medium=email&utm_source=causes

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    Major Battles On
    For over 31 years, Major Tillery has been a prisoner of the State.
    Despite that extraordinary fact, he continues his battles, both in the prison for his health, and in the courts for his freedom.
    Several weeks ago, Tillery filed a direct challenge to his criminal conviction, by arguing that a so-called "secret witness" was, in fact, a paid police informant who was given a get-out-of-jail-free card if he testified against Tillery.
    Remember I mentioned, "paid?"
    Well, yes--the witness was 'paid'--but not in dollars. He was paid in sex!
    In the spring of 1984, Robert Mickens was facing decades in prison on rape and robbery charges. After he testified against Tillery, however, his 25-year sentence became 5 years: probation!
    And before he testified he was given an hour and a ½ private visit with his girlfriend--at the Homicide Squad room at the Police Roundhouse. (Another such witness was given another sweetheart deal--lie on Major, and get off!)
    To a prisoner, some things are more important than money. Like sex!
    In a verified document written in April, 2016, Mickens declares that he lied at trial, after being coached by the DAs and detectives on the case.
    He lied to get out of jail--and because he could get with his girl.
    Other men have done more for less.
    Major's 58-page Petition is a time machine back into a practice that was once common in Philadelphia.
    In the 1980s and '90s, the Police Roundhouse had become a whorehouse.
    Major, now facing serious health challenges from his hepatitis C infection, stubborn skin rashes, and dangerous intestinal disorders, is still battling.
    And the fight ain't over.
    [©'16 MAJ  6/29/16]
    Major Tillery Needs Your Help and Support
    Major Tillery is an innocent man. There was no evidence against Major Tillery for the 1976 poolroom shootings that left one man dead and another wounded. The surviving victim gave a statement to homicide detectives naming others—not Tillery or his co-defendant—as the shooters. Major wasn't charged until 1980, he was tried in 1985.
    The only evidence at trial came from these jailhouse informants who were given sexual favors and plea deals for dozens of pending felonies for lying against Major Tillery. Both witnesses now declare their testimony was manufactured by the police and prosecution. Neither witness had personal knowledge of the shooting.
    This is a case of prosecutorial misconduct and police corruption that goes to the deepest levels of rot in the Philadelphia criminal injustice system. Major Tillery deserves not just a new trial, but dismissal of the charges against him and his freedom from prison.
    It cost a lot of money for Major Tillery to be able to file his new pro se PCRA petition and continue investigation to get more evidence of the state misconduct. He needs help to get lawyers to make sure this case is not ignored. Please contribute, now.

    HOW YOU CAN HELP
      Financial Support: Tillery's investigation is ongoing, to get this case filed has been costly and he needs funds for a legal team to fight this to his freedom!
      Go to JPay.com;
      code: Major Tillery AM9786 PADOC
      Tell Philadelphia District Attorney
      Seth Williams:
      Free Major Tillery! He is an innocent man, framed by police and and prosecution.
      Call: 215-686-8711 or

      Write to:
      Major Tillery AM9786
      SCI Frackville
      1111 Altamont Blvd.
      Frackville, PA 17931

        For More Information, Go To: Justice4MajorTillery/blogspot
        Call/Write:
        Rachel Wolkenstein, Esq. (917) 689-4009RachelWolkenstein@gmail.com





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        Commute Kevin Cooper's Death Sentence

        Sign the Petition:
        http://www.savekevincooper.org/pages/petition.php


        Urge Gov. Jerry Brown to commute Kevin Cooper's death sentence. Cooper has always maintained his innocence of the 1983 quadruple murder of which he was convicted. In 2009, five federal judges signed a dissenting opinion warning that the State of California "may be about to execute an innocent man." Having exhausted his appeals in the US courts, Kevin Cooper's lawyers have turned to the Inter American Commission on Human Rights to seek remedy for what they maintain is his wrongful conviction, and the inadequate trial representation, prosecutorial misconduct and racial discrimination which have marked the case. Amnesty International opposes all executions, unconditionally.

        "The State of California may be about to execute an innocent man." - Judge William A. Fletcher, 2009 dissenting opinion on Kevin Cooper's case

        Kevin Cooper has been on death row in California for more than thirty years.

        In 1985, Cooper was convicted of the murder of a family and their house guest in Chino Hills. Sentenced to death, Cooper's trial took place in an atmosphere of racial hatred — for example, an effigy of a monkey in a noose with a sign reading "Hang the N*****!" was hung outside the venue of his preliminary hearing.

        Take action to see that Kevin Cooper's death sentence is commuted immediately.

        Cooper has consistently maintained his innocence.

        Following his trial, five federal judges said: "There is no way to say this politely. The district court failed to provide Cooper a fair hearing."

        Since 2004, a dozen federal appellate judges have indicated their doubts about his guilt.

        Tell California authorities: The death penalty carries the risk of irrevocable error. Kevin Cooper's sentence must be commuted.

        In 2009, Cooper came just eight hours shy of being executed for a crime that he may not have committed. Stand with me today in reminding the state of California that the death penalty is irreversible — Kevin Cooper's sentence must be commuted immediately.

        In solidarity,

        James Clark
        Senior Death Penalty Campaigner
        Amnesty International USA

          Kevin Cooper: An Innocent Victim of Racist Frame-Up - from the Fact Sheet at: www.freekevincooper.org

          Kevin Cooper is an African-American man who was wrongly convicted and sentenced to death in 1985 for the gruesome murders of a white family in Chino Hills, California: Doug and Peggy Ryen and their daughter Jessica and their house- guest Christopher Hughes. The Ryens' 8 year old son Josh, also attacked, was left for dead but survived.

          Convicted in an atmosphere of racial hatred in San Bernardino County CA, Kevin Cooper remains under a threat of imminent execution in San Quentin.  He has never received a fair hearing on his claim of innocence.  In a dissenting opinion in 2009, five federal judges of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals signed a 82 page dissenting opinion that begins: "The State of California may be about to execute an innocent man." 565 F.3d 581.

          There is significant evidence that exonerates Mr. Cooper and points toward other suspects:

            The coroner who investigated the Ryen murders concluded that the murders took four minutes at most and that the murder weapons were a hatchet, a long knife, an ice pick and perhaps a second knife. How could a single person, in four or fewer minutes, wield three or four weapons, and inflict over 140 wounds on five people, two of whom were adults (including a 200 pound ex-marine) who had loaded weapons near their bedsides?

            The sole surviving victim of the murders, Josh Ryen, told police and hospital staff within hours of the murders that the culprits were "three white men." Josh Ryen repeated this statement in the days following the crimes. When he twice saw Mr. Cooper's picture on TV as the suspected attacker, Josh Ryen said "that's not the man who did it."

            Josh Ryen's description of the killers was corroborated by two witnesses who were driving near the Ryens' home the night of the murders. They reported seeing three white men in a station wagon matching the description of the Ryens' car speeding away from the direction of the Ryens' home.

            These descriptions were corroborated by testimony of several employees and patrons of a bar close to the Ryens' home, who saw three white men enter the bar around midnight the night of the murders, two of whom were covered in blood, and one of whom was wearing coveralls.

            The identity of the real killers was further corroborated by a woman who, shortly after the murders were discovered, alerted the sheriff's department that her boyfriend, a convicted murderer, left blood-spattered coveralls at her home the night of the murders. She also reported that her boyfriend had been wearing a tan t-shirt matching a tan t-shirt with Doug Ryen's blood on it recovered near the bar. She also reported that her boyfriend owned a hatchet matching the one recovered near the scene of the crime, which she noted was missing in the days following the murders; it never reappeared; further, her sister saw that boyfriend and two other white men in a vehicle that could have been the Ryens' car on the night of the murders.

          Lacking a motive to ascribe to Mr. Cooper for the crimes, the prosecution claimed that Mr. Cooper, who had earlier walked away from custody at a minimum security prison, stole the Ryens' car to escape to Mexico. But the Ryens had left the keys in both their cars (which were parked in the driveway), so there was no need to kill them to steal their car. The prosecution also claimed that Mr. Cooper needed money, but money and credit cards were found untouched and in plain sight at the murder scene.

          The jury in 1985 deliberated for seven days before finding Mr. Cooper guilty. One juror later said that if there had been one less piece of evidence, the jury would not have voted to convict.

          The evidence the prosecution presented at trial tying Mr. Cooper to the crime scene has all been discredited…         (Continue reading this document at: http://www.savekevincooper.org/_new_freekevincooperdotorg/TEST/Scripts/DataLibraries/upload/KC_FactSheet_2014.pdf)

               This message from the Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal. July 2015

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          CANCEL ALL STUDENT DEBT!

          Sign the Petition:

          http://cancelallstudentdebt.com/?code=kos



          Dear President Obama, Senators, and Members of Congress:


          Americans now owe $1.3 trillion in student debt. Eighty-six percent of that money is owed to the United States government. This is a crushing burden for more than 40 million Americans and their families.

          I urge you to take immediate action to forgive all student debt, public and private.

          American Federation of Teachers
          Campaign for America's Future
          Courage Campaign
          Daily Kos
          Democracy for America
          LeftAction
          Project Springboard
          RH Reality Check
          RootsAction
          Student Debt Crisis
          The Nation
          Working Families


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          Campaign to Free Lorenzo Johnson


          Updates from Team Lorenzo Johnson

          Dear Supporters and Friends,


          Show your support for Lorenzo by wearing one of our beautiful new campaign t-shirts! If you donate $20 (or more!) to the Campaign to Free Lorenzo Johnson, we will send you a t-shirt, while supplies last. Make sure to note your size and shipping address in the comment section on PayPal, or to include this information with a check.




          Here is a message from Lorenzo's wife, Tazza Salvatto:


          My husband is innocent, FREE HIM NOW!
          Lorenzo Johnson is a son, husband, father and brother. His injustice has been a continued nightmare for our family. Words cant explain our constant pain, I wish it on no one. Not even the people responsible for his injustice. 
          This is about an innocent man who has spent 20 years and counting in prison. The sad thing is Lorenzo's prosecution knew he was innocent from day one. These are the same people society relies on to protect us.

          Not only have these prosecutors withheld evidence of my husbands innocence by NEVER turning over crucial evidence to his defense prior to trial. Now that Lorenzo's innocence has been revealed, the prosecution refuses to do the right thing. Instead they are "slow walking" his appeal and continuing their malicious prosecution.
          When my husband or our family speak out about his injustice, he's labeled by his prosecutor as defaming a career cop and prosecutor. If they are responsible for Lorenzo's wrongful conviction, why keep it a secret??? This type of corruption and bullying of families of innocent prisoners to remain silent will not be tolerated.
          Our family is not looking for any form of leniency. Lorenzo is innocent, we want what is owed to him. JUSTICE AND HIS IMMEDIATE FREEDOM!!! 

                                    Lorenzo's wife,
                                     Tazza Salvatto
          Lorenzo is continuing to fight for his freedom with the support of his lead counsel, Michael Wiseman, The Pennsylvania Innocence Project, the Jeffrey Deskovic Foundation for Justice, and the Campaign to Free Lorenzo Johnson.
          Thank you all for reading this message and please take the time to visit our website and contribute to Lorenzo's campaign for freedom!
          Write: Lorenzo Johnson
                      DF 1036
                      SCI Mahanoy
                      301 Morea Rd.
                      Frackville, PA 17932
           Email: Through JPay using the code:
                        Lorenzo Johnson DF 1036 PA DOC
                                                or
                        Directly at LorenzoJohnson17932@gmail.com
                                               or
                        Directly on ConnectNetwork -- instructions here

          Have a wonderful day!
          - The Team to Free Lorenzo Johnson

          Write: Lorenzo Johnson
                      DF 1036
                      SCI Mahanoy
                      301 Morea Rd.
                      Frackville, PA 17932

           Email: Through JPay using the code:
                        Lorenzo Johnson DF 1036 PA DOC
                                               or
                        Directly at LorenzoJohnson17932@gmail.com

          freelorenzojohnson.org

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          B. ARTICLES IN FULL


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          1)  Time to Move the Standing Rock Pipeline





          President Obama has pointed a way out of a dangerous standoff over an oil pipeline being built in North Dakota. He told an interviewer on Tuesday that the Army Corps of Engineers was looking for a new pipeline route, presumably away from the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, whose members and allies have been protesting the project for months, saying it threatens the tribe’s sacred lands and water supply.
          It was a welcome hint of good news in an intensely bitter confrontation that came wrapped in historic injustice and seemed destined to end in grief. The $3.7 billion Dakota Access pipeline is meant to carry crude oil from the Bakken fields of western North Dakota to Illinois, 1,170 miles to the east. It would not enter tribal land but it would pass close enough for the Sioux to fear grave damage from a leak or spill. Its current proposed route runs less than half a mile north of the reservation and under the Missouri River, a source of drinking water. Though the pipeline would mostly cross private property, the tribe also argues that these have been the Sioux’s ancestral lands since antiquity, and construction would damage sites of deep cultural and historic significance, including burial grounds.
          A federal judge in September denied the tribe’s request for an injunction to block construction, but the tribe has continued to press the Army corps to withhold permits, which the builders need because the pipeline would cross a navigable waterway. The Sioux accuse the corps of being a rubber stamp for the oil industry, of ignoring its objections and of illegally issuing permits in violation of the Clean Water Act, the National Historic Preservation Act and other federal laws — charges that the corps denies.

          The tribe’s sense of grievance is understandable, given that the pipeline was shifted in its direction, away from Bismarck, N.D., because federal regulators saw it as a potential threat to that city’s water supply.
          The Dakota and Lakota of the Standing Rock tribe would hardly be the first American Indians to pay the price for white people who want to move environmental hazards out of sight, out of mind and out of their water faucets. If the federal government shifts the pipeline route again — perhaps closer to Bismarck — maybe that will prompt a full, meaningful discussion of the pipeline’s merits, with a fairer assessment of its true costs.
          A pipeline may well be the most profitable and efficient way to move a half-million barrels of crude oil a day across the Plains. But in a time of oil gluts and plummeting oil prices, is it worth it? Is it worth the degradation of the environment, the danger to the water, the insult to the heritage of the Sioux?
          The law-enforcement response to the largely peaceful Standing Rock impasse has led to grim clashes at protest camps between hundreds of civilians and officers in riot gear. The confrontation cannot help summoning a wretched history. Not far from Standing Rock, in the Black Hills of South Dakota, sacred land was stolen from the Sioux, plundered for gold and other minerals, and then carved into four monumental presidential heads: an American shrine built from a brazen act of defacement.
          The Sioux know as well as any of America’s native peoples that justice is a shifting concept, that treaties, laws and promises can wilt under the implacable pressure for mineral extraction. But without relitigating the history of the North American conquest, perhaps the protesters can achieve their aim to stop or reroute the pipeline.
          “We are monitoring this closely,” Mr. Obama said. “I think as a general rule, my view is that there is a way for us to accommodate sacred lands of Native Americans.” Of course there is. There has to be.

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          2)  More Than 200 Migrants Drown Off Libya Trying to Reach Europe


          More people are dying while attempting to cross the Mediterranean from Libya to Europe: at least 239 drowned in two separate shipwrecks, the United Nations reported on Thursday.
          Nearly as many migrants have died at sea this year as all of last year, the United Nations’ refugee agency has said, even though far fewer have attempted the perilous crossing.

          Smugglers Are Changing Their Tactics


          The sharp rise in fatalities — 3,940 deaths this year, compared with 3,700 in all of 2015 — can be attributed in part to the changing tactics used by smugglers. They are loading thousands of people at a time and using less seaworthy boats, including inflatable rubber rafts that do not last the crossing.
          On Wednesday, a rubber dinghy believed to be carrying scores of migrants from West Africa collapsed a few hours after it left Libya early in the morning, a spokesman for the International Organization for Migration told Reuters. The spokesman, Flavio Di Giacomo, cited accounts by survivors who said that most of the passengers, including several children, had drowned.
          Another raft carrying about 130 people from Libya sank around the same time, according to two women who had been rescued. The other passengers had not been recovered.

          Fewer Migrants, but Greater Challenges

          Despite the overall decrease in the number of migrants, the smugglers are straining the capacity of rescue services to cope.
          More than one million people made the crossing last year. So far this year, about 328,000 have tried to do so, the United Nations refugee agency said last week.

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          3)  Bank of America Accused of Gouging Ex-Inmates With Card Fees


          NEW YORK — Bank of America Corp has been hit with a proposed class action accusing it of charging exorbitant fees to thousands of former Arizona prison inmates who were issued debit cards when they were released.
          Filed on Thursday in federal court in Phoenix, the lawsuit accused the bank of exploiting "one of the most vulnerable groups imaginable" - individuals coming out of prison without a job or sometimes even a place to go.
          The prepaid cards are issued to prisoners to return money confiscated when they were arrested or that they earned through work programs.
          Prisoners are given no choice other than the fee-laden cards to obtain their own money from inmate accounts, the complaint said. Charges include some that ordinary consumers would not have to pay, such as $15 to withdraw money at a bank teller window, the complaint said.
          "They get charged a fee just to walk up to a teller to find out how much money they have in their accounts," said Richard Golomb, lead counsel for the ex-prisoners. The fees are based on a debit card contract "that they never agreed to and never signed," he said.
          Representatives of Bank of America and the Arizona Department of Corrections could not immediately be reached for comment.
          More than 19,000 inmates are released each year by the Arizona Department of Corrections, the lawsuit said. Bank of America can impose whatever terms it wants because it has an exclusive right to provide the debit cards to Arizona inmates, the lawsuit said.
          Bank of America is the latest bank to face a lawsuit over prepaid cards issued to prisoners. JPMorgan Chase & Co in August agreed to pay $446,822 to settle a similar action stemming from its contract with the U.S. Bureau of Prisons to issue debit cards to ex-inmates nationwide.
          According to the complaint against Bank of America, the debit cards exploit a loophole in federal regulations that protect the rights of other consumers.
          Under the U.S. Electronic Funds Transfer Act and related regulations, companies cannot force individuals to receive wages on prepaid debit cards, but that rule applies to "recurring" payments, not one-time payments to former inmates, the lawsuit said.
          The case is: Brill et al v Bank of America, U.S. District Court, Arizona District, No 16-cv-3817

          (Editing by Anthony Lin and Matthew Lewis)

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          4)  Communities Across the Globe Mobilize to Support #NoDAPL (and You Can Too)
          Saturday, 05 November 2016 00:00 By Candice Bernd, Truthout | Reporthttp://www.truth-out.org/news/item/38252-communities-across-the-globe-mobilize-to-support-nodapl-and-you-can-too

          Since last Thursday's violent clash in which 141 Indigenous Water Protectors were arrested, marked with numbers and put into dog-kennel-like holding cells after defending land directly in the route of the Dakota Access pipeline, activists from across the US and around the world have responded with a groundswell of actions in solidarity. These actions have strategically targeted the Dakota Access pipeline's funders, as well as law enforcement agencies sending resources and personnel to brutalize Indigenous resisters and allies.
          Isabella Zizi, who is of the northern Cheyenne, Arikara and Muscogee Creek nations protested at Citigroup's headquarters in San Francisco on Monday. "I wanted to let those out in Standing Rock know that we are supporting them even if we can't make it out [to North Dakota]," Zizi told Truthout. "We will do anything that we can to be in solidarity with them."
          A global outcry has followed an attack on Native Water Protectors gathered on 1851 Oceti Sakowin treaty land north of the Standing Rock Sioux reservation on Thursday, October 27. More than 200 law enforcement officers from seven different states and National Guard personnel used flash grenades, bean bag launchers, pepper spray and long range acoustic devices, and even allegedly fired live ammunition on Indigenous Land Defenders protecting sacred burial grounds.
          Officials charged one Native Water Protector with attempted murder after the October 27 standoff, even as Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier said he could not confirm Land Defenders fired shots during Thursday's raid.
          President Obama has since said that the Army Corps of Engineers is considering rerouting the pipeline -- slated to carry Bakken crude from North Dakota through South Dakota, Iowa and to an Illinois distribution center -- after last week's escalated crackdown. "We're monitoring this closely," President Obama told NowThis. "My view is that there is a way for us to accommodate sacred lands of Native Americans. And I think that right now the Army Corps is examining whether there are ways to reroute this pipeline."
          But only hours after the president's comments on Dakota Access, the US Army Corps of Engineers ordered North Dakota police to move in and arrest Indigenous Water Protectors and demolish a makeshift bridge they built over a creek to reportedly gain access to private land where the latest round of construction is occurring. Police used tear gas and rubber bullets against Native Land Defenders this week.
          In the face of this advancing construction, Native communities and activists around the world are taking bold action in solidarity with those at Standing Rock. Since Thursday's police sweep, activists in the US and abroad have strategically targeted the powerful interests bankrolling the pipeline by locking themselves down inside banks, protesting the pipeline's billionaire backers, rallying at city halls to protest public resources and police personnel being sent to suppress Native Water Protectors, speaking out online by "checking in" at Standing Rock on Facebook, and donating money to the protesters' legal fund and to cover other expenses.
          Activists have also targeted President Obama and Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, with Native youth flooding Clinton's campaign headquarters in Brooklyn to demand she oppose the pipeline on the day of the mass arrests at Standing Rock. There were also demonstrations to demand the pipeline's cancellation near a Clinton presidential campaign fundraiser with President Obama in Beverly Hills on October 24.
          Investigations by LittleSis and Food and Water Watch reveal that 38 banks have extended more than $10.25 billion in loans to fund the Energy Transfer group of companies behind the pipeline, which include Energy Transfer Partners, Energy Transfer Equity, Sunoco Logistics and Dakota Access LLC. Additionally, Canada's largest pipeline company, Enbridge, with the Texas-based Marathon Petroleum Corporation put down $2.6 billion last month to become joint stakeholders of 49 percent of the Dakota Access pipeline. Phillips 66 also owns a 25 percent stake in the pipeline.
          Seventeen major banks are backing Dakota Access LLC directly with a $2.5 billion credit line to build the pipeline. Major funders include Citibank, Wells Fargo, BNP Paribas, SunTrust, Royal Bank of Scotland, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, Mizuho Bank, TD Securities, ABN AMRO Capital, DNB First Bank, ICBC London, SMBC Nikko Securities and Société Générale.
          After the Red Warrior Camp at Standing Rock (Sacred Stone and Oceti Sakowin are among the other camps), put out a call for solidarity actions last Thursday, protests have unfolded in the US and abroad. In Canada, on Friday night, Indigenous resisters from the Kahnawake Mohawk nation shut down a highway bridge leading to Montreal. In Kingston, Ontario, on Saturday, several TD Bank ATMs were smashed with hammers and spray-painted with "NO DAPL." In New Zealand, the Indigenous Māori people have been expressing support by posting videos of a traditional Māori war dance called the "haka" to a Facebook group called "Haka with Standing Rock."
          In the US, several protests at banks funding the pipeline have led to arrests of Native activists and their allies. In San Francisco on Monday, 12 activists with Diablo Rising Tide were arrested at the Citigroup bank headquarters after shutting down the elevators that lead to the bank's corporate offices to protest its role as the lead arranger and lender to the Dakota Access pipeline. More than 50 people protested in front of the bank, including Zizi, who organizes with Idle No More SF Bay.
          "Personally, it is affecting me because my relatives do live in [the Fort Berthold reservation in North Dakota], which is literally right in the area where the Bakken oil is being extracted and pulled out by the oil trains and all. It's really heartbreaking to see my relatives and all the tribes and all the people having to deal with that."
          That same day in Salt Lake City, eight people were arrested after chaining themselves together at a downtown Wells Fargo location, demanding the bank cancel its investment in Dakota Access.
          "What [those at Standing Rock] are doing for us, putting their bodies on the line and standing there with no weapons, peacefully being Water Protectors, we want them to know that we hear them. We're here. That's why we did what we did," said Carol Surveyor, who was at the Wells Fargo protest Monday and is Navajo/Diné. She cited the 2015 Gold King Mine wastewater spill's effect on the Navajo Nation's water as a personal motivation to act in solidarity with Standing Rock. "I know what happens to a town, to these communities, when they go into a panic when their water is contaminated," she said.
          Surveyor, who has traveled to Standing Rock, told Truthout that several activists involved with the bank action also staged a sit-in at city hall in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, aiming to pressure city officials to pass a resolution that would formally express the city's support for the Standing Rock Sioux and their struggle against the pipeline.
          In other cities, activists protested their local police departments' complicity in the violence being enacted against resisters at Standing Rock. More than 1,000 people demonstrated at the Minneapolis city hall on Friday, October 28, to protest the deployment of Hennepin County police to brutalize Native Water Protectors. The rally led to a sit-in at the office of Sheriff Rich Stanek, who has sent county deputies to Standing Rock.
          On Thursday, protesters in Austin, Texas, gathered outside the Texas Parks and Wildlife Headquarters to demand that Energy Transfer Partners CEO Kelcy Warren step down or be removed from the state's Parks and Wildlife Commission. They cited Warren's appointment by Gov. Greg Abbot as a conflict of interest. Warren gavemore than $500,000 to Abbott during his gubernatorial campaign, and a combined $30,000 to Abbot's 2006 and 2010 campaigns for state attorney general, according to the Texas Ethics Commission.
          "I wonder if the Texas Parks and Wildlife scientists would be as amenable [to oil and gas development] if they weren't pressured by the [industry reps on the] commission," said Lori Glover, an organizer and cofounder of Defend Big Bend, which is fighting another Energy Transfer Partners pipeline, the Trans-Pecos, through the state's Big Bend region. "There have been so many pipeline explosions over the past few years, yet [the commission] continues to say that there's no problem, and gives out these [oil and gas] permits and allows these things to happen."
          The Austin rally also addressed the Houston-based Apache Corporation's plans to drill for oil and gas around West Texas' serene Balmorhea State Park and its well-known spring-fed pools.
          "The significance of what's happening [in Standing Rock] is no different than when they marched into my family's home at bayonet point, took them away from their dinner tables, told them 'Grab what you can. You're out of here. You're going to Oklahoma,'" said Neta Rhyne, who is a Cherokee descendent of the Trail of Tears, and is fighting to save the Balmorhea springs. "But I think there's a new awakening. People are getting tired of it. They're realizing the impact that this is going to have on future generations."
          Native Water Protectors and allied protesters jumped on an opportunity to confront Warren directly during the quarterly commission meeting Thursday, as the commission weighed a proposal to run six pipelines through the wildlife management area in the state.
          After taking heat from several Indigenous leaders and environmentalists, Warren agreed to meet with Native leaders of the Society of Native Nations to discuss the desecreation of Native burial sites after one of the group's members, Pete Hefflin, asked him directly about the issue. The two exchanged contact informration, and Warren later recused himself from the vote on the proposal.
          Other recent actions included lockdowns in Providence, Rhode Island, where two people blocked the entrance to a TD Bank branch and corporate office; Mount Laurel, New Jersey, where four people were arrested after sitting-in at TD Bank's corporate headquarters there; and Philadelphia, where 25 people sat-in at a TD Bank ATM lobby.
          Protests at banks funding the pipeline and at corporate headquarters of companies directly behind the pipeline have jumped off in cities across the country in recent months, including large demonstrations in New York City, where on Tuesday, dozens of activists disrupted morning commutes by blockading the Grand Central Terminal before marching to the offices of JP Morgan and Bank of America. Other large demonstrations have erupted in Chicago, St. Louis, Dallas, Houston, New Haven and elsewhere.
          Last weekend, more than a million people "checked in" to Standing Rock on Facebook, in an overwhelming display of online solidarity and an attempt to confuse police efforts to monitor which individuals are at the resistance camps in Standing Rock. Meanwhile, hundreds of people have showed their support online by contributing to the camps' legal funds and donating to pay for expenses at the Standing Rock camps.
          In one way or another, these communities are responding directly to the Red Warrior Camp's call for solidarity actions in the aftermath of last Thursday's police sweep. The statement asks allies to travel directly to Standing Rock if they can, as advancing police forces and winter weather have made sustaining the encampment increasingly difficult.
          The camp asks allies who can't be present at Standing Rock to take escalated action against strategic targets by going to NoDAPLSolidarity.org and registering within the global solidarity network to target local Army Corps, banks, pipeline companies, corporations and elected officials responsible for the pipeline with nonviolent direct action. Lastly, the statement asks allies to send donations to the official Red Warrior Camp Fund and Official Legal Fund. The Sacred Stone Camp is also accepting donations at the Official Sacred Stone Camp Fund.
          Other ways to help include calling elected officials, such as North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple, the Morton County Sheriff's Department, the Army Corps of Engineers and the White House, and staying vocal on social media.
          "I can't physically go to North Dakota, but I wanted to still be an ally in this movement, in this fight, by taking direct action locally," said Laura Borth, who was arrested after locking down at a TD Bank in Providence, Rhode Island. "It's more than just a climate change issue or a climate justice issue, it's about this violence and oppression that's been facing Indigenous people for years in our country."
          Copyright, Truthout. May not be reprinted without permission.


          CANDICE BERND

          Candice Bernd is an editor/staff reporter at Truthout. With her partner, she is writing and producing Don't Frack With Denton, a documentary chronicling how her hometown became the first city to ban fracking in Texas, and its subsequent overturn in the state legislature. She is also a contributor to Truthout's anthology on police violence, Who Do You Serve, Who Do You Protect? Follow her on Twitter: @CandiceBernd.

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            5)  Colin Kaepernick Just Started A Black Panther-Inspired Youth Camp

            The athlete plans to expand the program to cities across the country.

             11/01/2016
            By Taryn Finley
            http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/colin-kaepernick-black-panther-youth-camp_us_5818b31ee4b0390e69d2935f


            Colin Kaepernick has taken his protests of police brutality to the people.

            During his team’s bye week, the San Fransisco 49ers quarterback hosted a free youth camp in Oakland on Saturday called Know Your Rights. The program aims to teach kids about various important issues, including higher education, self-empowerment and interacting with law enforcement. Hundreds of black and Latino children from the Bay Area attended, according to the New York Daily News.

            “We’re here today to fight back and give you all lessons to combat the oppressive issues that our people face on a daily basis. We’re here to give you tools to help you succeed,” he told the attendees, according to the Daily News. “We’re going to give you knowledge on policing history, what the systems of policing in America were based on, and we’re also going to teach you skills to make sure you always make it home safely.”

            The camp staff, which consists of Kaepernick and a small group of volunteers, also highlighted 10 basic rights they believe each child should know they have, including the right to be free, healthy, safe and educated. The day was constructed around these rights, which were inspired by the 10-point plan created by the Black Panther Party, who celebrated their 50th anniversary in October. Former party member Ericka Huggins also attended to share her knowledge. 

            “It’s exciting for me because I see a lot of hope, I see a lot of what is to come,” Kaepernick told The Undefeated. “And if you look at a lot of movements in past history, it started at a youth level and has built. And that’s really where change is created, is when youth come up and they’re built in that culture of, ‘I know what this means, I know why this is happening and I also know how to help create change now.’”

            He shared a story with the kids about how he recently traced his roots back to Ghana and Nigeria. The athlete told the kids that they, too, would be able to trace their ancestry free of charge.

            The quarterback told The Daily News that he has plans to expand Know Your Rights Camp to cities outside of the Bay Area. 
            “What we’ve done here today in Oakland, we want to do all over the country, in cities all over this country, by bringing together local leaders, local activists and local youth, and not only giving them the skills and lessons they need, but we want to show them how much we love and value them.” 
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            6)  Another Philippine Mayor Accused of Drug Crimes by Duterte Is Killed


            MANILA — A Philippine mayor who had been accused of drug trafficking by President Rodrigo Duterte was shot and killed by police officers in his jail cell on Saturday, the police said.
            The mayor, Rolando Espinosa Sr. of Albuera, a town in Leyte Province in the central Philippines, had been arrested in October, several weeks after Mr. Duterte included him in a list of about 150 Philippine officialswho he said were involved in narcotics. Mr. Espinosa, who had denied any wrongdoing, is the second politician on the list to have been killed by police officers in a little more than a week.
            The Leyte provincial police said Saturday that Mr. Espinosa and his cellmate, identified as Raul Yap, had been killed in a “firefight” with police officers, who woke them at dawn while searching their cell. The provincial police chief, Juvy Espinido, told a Manila radio station that both men had “resisted” the police but said he could not provide further details.
            Later, the police said they had recovered two handguns from the jail cell. Bags containing what was believed to be methamphetamine, marijuana and drug paraphernalia were also found inside the cell, the police said.
            Calls to spokesmen for the national police in Manila were not returned.
            Gwendolyn Pimentel-Gana, a member of the Philippine Commission on Human Rights, an independent government body, said the deaths “raise serious questions on the responsibility of the state to protect persons deprived of liberty, especially in relation to the primordial right to live of every human being.”
            Ms. Pimentel-Gana called on the police to “hold the people responsible for the deaths accountable.”
            Mr. Espinosa died just eight days after Samsudin Dimaukom, another mayor accused of drug crimes by Mr. Duterte, was killed by police officers in the southern Philippines. Mr. Dimaukom, who also denied being involved in narcotics, was gunned down at a police checkpoint along with nine men traveling with him; the police said people in Mr. Dimaukom’s party had fired on officers.
            Since taking office in June, Mr. Duterte has embarked on a bloody campaign against drugs — particularly shabu, a cheap form of methamphetamine — that has left about 2,000 people dead, some killed by police officers and others by vigilantes. Human rights groups and Western governments have criticized the campaign, but it has been popular in the Philippines.
            In August, Mr. Duterte read on television his list of officials allegedly involved in drugs, warning them to surrender to the authorities. He offered no evidence of their guilt and later said some names might have been put on the list by mistake.
            Mr. Espinosa, who was accused by Mr. Duterte along with his son, Kerwin Espinosa, turned himself in to the police in Manila, while his son went into hiding. The son has since been detained in Abu Dhabi, and Philippine officials said they were seeking to have him returned.
            While Rolando Espinosa was in detention, the police raided his home and killed six of his bodyguards. They said they had found about 24 pounds of shabu on the property. Nevertheless, he was later freed, only to be arrested again in October and charged with illegal possession of drugs and firearms.

            A statement on Saturday from the office of Mr. Duterte’s communications secretary, Martin Andanar, called Mr. Espinosa’s death “unfortunate.”

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            7)  Destroying an 11-Apartment Structure to Build a Mansion
            For the past two years or so, my daily comings and goings have taken me past a building on my Brooklyn Heights block ripped down to the studs by a developer with the ambition of returning it to the market as a five-story brownstone for $18 million. Renovations are ubiquitous in Brooklyn — home improvement is as distinguishing an element here as surgically taut faces are on Park Avenue — but this project possessed a team of workmen so big it seemed as though a regional airport were under construction. Greeting the foreman, an Irishman with intense eyes who appeared to have landed in the world of HVAC from the world of James Joyce, became such an integral part of my morning habit that I would worry about him on the days he wasn’t out front, poring over blueprints on the hood of his car.
            When plans for the building, which included a meditation room, an elevator and a kitchen the size of an Applebee’s, were publicized earlier this year, some who have been on the street for decades and I reveled in talking about the ludicrous obscenity of it all. Many of the people on my block live extremely well and very quietly, bound by a distaste for ostentation that anyone moving into a 7,750-square-foot, seven-bedroom townhouse staged with potted boxwoods on the stoop was unlikely to regard with a similar ardor.
            The issue with lavish conversions like this one — the transformation of multiunit dwellings to single-family houses, a practice in evidence across New York City — extends beyond, of course, the threat posed to a kind of vanishing, laid-back patrician authenticity. The house about to go up for sale on my block used to contain 11 rental apartments, which lent a semblance of economic diversity to a street otherwise characterized by the blessed fortunes of the ownership class. Its rebirth as a home for someone so extraordinarily wealthy that the merely rich would now seem to occupy a different orbit represented not only a further step in the geographic isolation of the ruling order from everyone else, but crucially, a shrinking of the housing supply at a moment of astronomical costs.
            During the past eight years, as the crisis of homelessness has intensified — there are currently close to 62,000 people sleeping in city sheltersevery night — there have been at least 260 multidwelling buildings in Manhattan and Brooklyn that have been turned into houses for individual families, resulting in the loss of more than 830 apartments from the market.
            In some neighborhoods the figures are especially stark: More than a quarter of the restructurings have been in the ZIP codes encompassing Park Slope and Boerum Hill, according to the city’s Buildings Department. Since 2008, there have been more than 70 conversions in the West Village and Chelsea, neighborhoods one would have thought were long past the point of gentrification. Just the other day, the real estate site Apartment Listreleased a November report ranking rent prices in Chelsea as the highest in the city. A two-bedroom apartment there typically goes for more than $6,000 a month.
            Debates about affordable housing have largely revolved around zoning and where density should be increased, with little attention paid to the effects of actively reducing density in many parts of the city or potentially offsetting gains of new construction. What can be done? In most cases, when a building is converted to a townhouse meant for one family — in particular, the kind of house with a wine cellar and a lap pool — that house, in its new configuration, will generate increased property tax revenue.
            The house on my block, for instance, which was bought a few years ago for over $6 million, is now about to be listed for just under $16 million, with a prominent broker, Leonard Steinberg, who specializes in selling luxury apartments in Lower Manhattan.
            When I asked Mr. Steinberg to whom he would be marketing the house, he said people thinking about a move to places like Greenwich or Scarsdale might be the focus — families who were looking for space of the kind they presumed was not readily available in the city; people without the forbearance or, as he put it, “imagination” to handle big renovations themselves. But of course, suburbanites with limited creativity and vision are precisely the demographic one moves to Brooklyn to avoid.
            If the special alchemy of your block feels as if it is in jeopardy — in the case of where I live, a conviviality belies the stateliness, and people gather on one another’s stoops to drink and talk as if it were Mayberry — then a Robin Hood effect might as well kick in. One option could be for the city to divert all of the additional income from those increased taxes to a fund committed to the development of more affordable housing, adding to money already funneled from property taxes to the mission.
            You might well end up with the kind of person next door living alone in 10,000 square feet who outsources the distribution of Halloween candy to one of his 650 employees. But maybe you would be able to stomach it all a little more easily.

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            8)  The Risk to Civil Liberties of Fighting Crime With Big Data
            SAN FRANCISCO — People talk about online security as a cat-and-mouse game of good guys and bad guys. It’s true for good old-fashioned crime, too.
            Technology, particularly rapid analysis and sharing of data, is helping the police be more efficient and predict possible crimes. Some would argue that it has even contributed to an overall drop in crime in recent years.
            But this type of technology also raises issues of civil liberties, as digital information provided by social media or the sensors of the internet of things is combined with criminal data by companies that sell this information to law enforcement agencies.
            The American Civil Liberties Union, citing reports that the Chicago Police Department used a computer analysis to create a “heat list” that unfairly associated innocent people with criminal behavior, has warned about the dangers of the police using big data. Even companies that make money doing this sort of work warn that it comes with civil rights risks.
            “We’re heading to a world where every trash can has an identifier. Even I get shocked at the comprehensiveness of what data providers sell,” said Courtney Bowman, who leads the privacy and civil liberties practice at Palantir Technologies, a company in Palo Alto, Calif., that sells data analysis tools. He has lectured on the hazards of predictive policing and the need to prove in court that predictive models follow understandable logic and do not reinforce stereotypes.
            Some of this shift to data-based policing seems to be a matter of simple automation. The RELX Group, formerly Reed Elsevier, has for some years been buying and building up databases of police information. One product, called Coplogic, is used by 5,000 police departments in the United States.
            Coplogic automates filling out accident reports. When a police officer enters a license plate number, many other fields on the report, like the registered address associated with the car, are automatically filled in. The company says this can halve the time an officer spends in traffic filing a report.
            Cities can also use the service to identify their most dangerous traffic spots or, in much the way driving maps predict the fastest route home, predict where road repairs are needed.
            “This frees up time and resources for higher-value activities, like predictive policing,” said Roy Marler, vice president of Coplogic. “The state can use this data to get federal funding for roadway improvements.”
            RELX has become something like the Ticketmaster of insurance reporting. The company processes about 500,000 requests a month for digital accident reports, mostly from insurance companies, charging a $7 “convenience fee” to provide the information. Cities also receive a cut of the $7 for the distribution.
            Thomson Reuters and Dun & Bradstreet also do a big business selling data to law enforcement.
            In much the way combining different databases has helped people who place online ads gain insight and make predictions, traffic data now provides a window into crime.
            “Criminals are citizens, too,” said William Hatfield, a former Secret Service agent working with RELX. “Even with an outstanding warrant, their car is their pride and joy. When they file with an insurance company, they give accurate information about their address that police can use to find them.”
            Sharing data, both among the parts of a big police department and between the police and the private sector, “is a force multiplier,” he said.
            Companies working with the military and intelligence agencies have long practiced these kinds of techniques, which the companies are bringing to domestic policing, in much the way surplus military gear has beefed up American SWAT teams.
            Palantir first built up its business by offering products like maps of social networks of extremist bombers and terrorist money launderers, and figuring out efficient driving routes to avoid improvised explosive devices.
            Palantir used similar data-sifting techniques in New Orleans to spot individuals most associated with murders. Law enforcement departments around Salt Lake City used Palantir to allow common access to 40,000 arrest photos, 520,000 case reports and information like highway and airport data — building human maps of suspected criminal networks.
            People in the predictive business sometimes compare what they do to controlling the other side’s “OODA loop,” a term first developed by a fighter pilot and military strategist named John Boyd.
            OODA stands for “observe, orient, decide, act” and is a means of managing information in battle.
            “Whether it’s war or crime, you have to get inside the other side’s decision cycle and control their environment,” said Robert Stasio, a project manager for cyberanalysis at IBM, and a former United States government intelligence official. “Criminals can learn to anticipate what you’re going to do and shift where they’re working, employ more lookouts.”
            IBM sells tools that also enable police to become less predictable, for example, by taking different routes into an area identified as a crime hot spot. It has also conducted studies that show changing tastes among online criminals — for example, a move from hacking retailers’ computers to stealing health care data, which can be used to file for federal tax refunds.
            But there are worries about what military-type data analysis means for civil liberties, even among the companies that get rich on it.
            “It definitely presents challenges to the less sophisticated type of criminal, but it’s creating a lot of what is called ‘Big Brother’s little helpers,’” Mr. Bowman said. For now, he added, much of the data abundance problem is that “most police aren’t very good at this.”

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            9)  When Bats Look for Meals Near Wind Power, Bats Die
            Wind power can help the world fight climate change, but it’s not so great for bats.
            A new study of wind turbines in Britain found that each turbine killed one to two bats each month on average, with some killing more than 60. The researchers said that the efforts that are required in many countries to assess the environmental effect of planned wind farms have proved faulty and inadequate in measuring the risk to bats. There are more than 300,000 wind turbines around the world.
            The risks to birds of the blades of wind turbines are becoming well understood, but the risk to bats, while known, has been poorly defined until now, said Fiona Mathews, lead author of the study and an assistant professor of mammalian biology at the University of Exeter in England. Bats, she said, might be attracted to turbines, whether because of the noise the machines make or the bugs that are trapped in the air movement: “It’s a ready food supply.”
            Her team found bat casualties in unexpected places like high-altitude spots, she said.
            Finding the bats, which are small and not colorful, presented special challenges. Using specially trained bat-sniffing dogs, the researchers found the hard-to-spot bat corpses at the bases of turbines at 46 wind farms around England. Dr. Mathews said she contacted an expert who trains dogs to sniff out bodies, bombs and the like for bat duty. “He just killed himself laughing,” she said, and then he told her, “This is the funniest thing anybody’s ever asked me to do.”
            Dr. Mathews, who is also the chairwoman of the Mammal Society, a conservation group in England, said that the research in no way suggested that renewable power was a bad thing, but argued that wind power companies should take action to minimize the damage to bats, which pollinate plants and consume pests like mosquitoes. The risk is higher at times of low wind, in part because bats are less likely to take to the air during a hard blow; because turbines are not generating much power anyway during those times of relative calm, stilling the blades or shifting their pitch to limit motion could save many bats, as could curtailing operation during peak bat periods of the year. “You can make a huge difference in the number of bats you’re killing,” she said.

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            10)  Environmentalists Target Bankers Behind Pipeline



            In early August, just as protesters from across the country descended on North Dakota to rally against an oil pipeline near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, some of the world’s biggest banks signed off on a $2.5 billion loan to help complete the sprawling project.
            Now, those banks — which include Citigroup and Wells Fargo of the United States, TD Bank of Canada and Mizuho of Japan — have come under fire for their role in bankrolling the pipeline. In an open letter on Monday, 26 environmental groups urged those banks to halt further loan payments to the project, which the Sioux say threatens their sacred lands and water supply.
            In campaigning to reduce the world’s carbon emissions, environmentalists have increasingly focused on the financiers behind the fossil fuel industry — highlighting their role in financing coal, oil and gas projects. It is an expansion of traditional protest efforts, and it has met with some early success.
            Environmental groups have also criticized the Dakota Access pipeline as outdated infrastructure with no place in a world racing to stave off the worst effects of climate change. The 1,172-mile pipeline is expected to carry nearly half a million barrels of crude oil daily out of the Bakken fields of North Dakota, according to the company building the pipeline, Energy Transfer Partners.
            Late last month, hundreds of police in riot gear used pepper spray and rubber bullets to evict protesters from land owned by Energy Transfer. Over 100 people were arrested in the sweep. President Obama said last week that the Army Corps of Engineers was considering an alternate route for the pipeline.
            “Banks have a choice to either finance the transition to renewable energy, or to finance pipelines and power plants that will lock us into fossil fuels for the next 40 years,” said Johan Frijns, director of BankTrack, a Netherlands-based advocacy organization that led the campaign. “If we’re serious about fighting climate change, we can’t continue to finance fossil fuel infrastructure of any kind.”

            The letter from BankTrack and other environmental groups, including the Sierra Club, Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth, was addressed to the Equator Principles Association, a consortium of global banks committed to responsible environmental and social practices.
            Thirteen of the 17 banks that participated in the latest loan to the Dakota pipeline project, including all five of the lead banks, are members. The group was holding its annual meeting in London on Monday and Tuesday.
            The letter came as climate negotiators gathered in Marrakesh, Morocco, to work on the details of executing the Paris climate accord. On the agenda are drafting rules on how to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions, as well as securing financial aid to help poor countries deal with climate change.
            Hillary Clinton, the Democrat nominee in the race for the United States presidency, has said she will back the climate policies of President Obama, including continued support of the Paris agreement. Her Republican opponent, Donald J. Trump, has called global warming a hoax, and has said he would “cancel” the Paris deal if he were elected.
            In their battles with banks, environmentalists have scored some early victories. After a concerted effort by climate-change campaigners, several global banks, including Barclays, ING and Deutsche Bank, stepped back over the last two years from projects that involve mountaintop removal mining, a practice experts say is particularly damaging to the environment.
            Earlier this year, JPMorgan Chase announced that it would no longer finance new coal-fired power plants in the United States or other wealthy nations, a retreat that followed similar announcements by Bank of America, Citigroup and Morgan Stanley. The banks’ move away from coal, however, appeared motivated as much by the plunging profitability of coal as by concerns over climate change.
            Experts also question the profitability of the Dakota pipeline, at a time of slumping oil prices.
            “A lot of infrastructure investment, particularly pipelines, is built around strong oil-demand projections that go out decades,” said Mark Campanale, founder of the Carbon Tracker Initiative, a financial think tank that focuses on energy and climate change. “If the scenarios around demand for oil is wrong, it’s likely that people are building costly infrastructure on a false promise — that the oil is going to be needed in 30 to 40 years.”
            The loan to Energy Transfer and its partners Sunoco Logistics Partners and Phillips 66 was led by Citigroup, Mizuho, Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ and TD Bank, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
            Citigroup said that it had already raised concerns over the project with Energy Transfer and advocated engagement with the Sioux tribe. It was closely following the outcomes of the federal government’s efforts to engage local communities in a possible review of the project, the bank said in a statement. A Wells Fargo spokesman, Alan Elias, declined to comment.
            Judith Schmidt, a spokeswoman for TD bank, declined to comment on the letter specifically. Mizuho and the Bank of Tokyo could not immediately be reached for comment.

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            11)  Anti-Trump Demonstrators Take to the Streets in Several U.S. Cities




            BERKELEY, Calif. — Chanting “Not my president,” several hundred protesters streamed through the streets of Berkeley and Oakland in the predawn hours of Wednesday venting their anger at the election of Donald J. Trump as president. Demonstrations were also reported in Pittsburgh, Seattle and Portland, Ore.
            The California Highway Patrol said that one protester, who was not identified, sustained major injuries after being hit by a car when protesters attempted to move onto a freeway.
            The demonstration was one of the first visible signs of anger in the liberal and heavily Democratic San Francisco Bay Area after Mr. Trump’s surprising victory.
            From Pennsylvania to California, Oregon and Washington State, hundreds of people hit the streets, according to reports by local news media and The Associated Press. In Oregon, dozens of people blocked traffic in downtown Portland and forced a delay for trains on two light rail lines. The crowd grew to about 300 people, according to local reports, including some who sat in the middle of the road to block traffic. The crowd of anti-Trump protesters burned American flags and chanted “That’s not my president.”
            In Seattle, a group of about 100 protesters gathered in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, blocked roads and set a trash bin on fire.

            In Pennsylvania, hundreds of University of Pittsburgh students marched through the streets, with some in the crowd calling for unity. The student-run campus newspaper, The Pitt News, posted on Twitter about an event later Wednesday titled “Emergency Meeting: Let’s Unite to Stop President Trump.”
            “We can’t just sit back and let a racist and sexist become president,” said Adam Braver, a 22-year-old political science student at the University of California, Berkeley, who marched with other protesters past empty fast-food restaurants in the early hours.
            “He makes us look bad to the rest of the world,” Mr. Braver said, as the demonstrators reached the outskirts of Oakland. The few cars on the road honked in apparent support of their efforts. “This is the beginning of a movement.”
            Marchers said the protest had begun spontaneously among students who had gathered on the Berkeley campus to watch the results.
            When it became clear that Mr. Trump would win, students filled a wide avenue and began marching toward neighboring Oakland.
            Daniel Colin, a graduate student in epidemiology and a naturalized American citizen from Guatemala, said the election marked the first time he had voted in the United States. “Now that I’m finally expressing my vote, this happens,” Mr. Colin said of Mr. Trump’s election. “It’s very sad.”
            Mr. Colin and a number of other Latino students on the march said they were concerned about what would happen to their friends and relatives during a Trump presidency because of his stance on migrants from Latin America.
            Daniel Austin, an African-American first-year student at the California College of the Arts in Oakland, said he felt threatened by Mr. Trump.
            “I feel like a part of my identity was stolen away from me. Not as a bisexual. Not as a black,” Mr. Austin said. “As an American.”
            Oakland officers attempted to block the marchers before they reached the police’s headquarters. One demonstrator flashed a handmade sign to the police blocking their path that read, “Trump is a fascist pig.”
            The protesters dispersed after 3 a.m., but many vowed to return to the streets in the coming days.






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            12)  Not Our President’: Protests Spread After Donald Trump’s Election



            Thousands of people across the country marched, shut down highways, burned effigies and shouted angry slogans on Wednesday night to protest the election of Donald J. Trump as president.
            The demonstrations, fueled by social media, continued into the early hours of Thursday. The crowds swelled as the night went on but remained mostly peaceful.
            Protests were reported in cities as diverse as Dallas and Oakland and included marches in Boston; Chicago; Portland, Ore.; Seattle and Washington and at college campuses in California, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.

            In Oakland alone, the Police Department said, the crowd grew from about 3,000 people at 7 p.m. to 6,000 an hour later. The situation grew tense late Wednesday, with SFGate.com reporting that a group of protesters had started small fires in the street and broken windows. Police officers in riot gear were called in, and at least one officer was injured, according to other local news reports.
            It was the second night of protests there, following unruly demonstrations that led to property damage and left at least one person injured shortly after Mr. Trump’s election was announced.
            The protests on Wednesday came just hours after Hillary Clinton, in her concession speech, asked supporters to give Mr. Trump a “chance to lead.”
            One of the biggest demonstrations was in Los Angeles, where protesters burned a Trump effigy at City Hall and shut down a section of Highway 101. Law enforcement officials were called out to disperse the hundreds of people who swarmed across the multilane freeway.
            In New York, crowds converged at Trump Tower, on Fifth Avenue at 56th Street in Midtown Manhattan, where the president-elect lives.
            They chanted “Not our president” and “New York hates Trump” and carried signs that said, among other things, “Dump Trump.” Restaurant workers in their uniforms briefly left their posts to cheer on the demonstrators.
            The demonstrations forced streets to be closed, snarled traffic and drew a large police presence. They started in separate waves from Union Square and Columbus Circle and snaked their way through Midtown.
            Loaded dump trucks lined Fifth Avenue for two blocks outside Trump Tower as a form of protection.
            Emanuel Perez, 25, of the Bronx, who works at a restaurant in Manhattan and grew up in Guerrero, Mexico, was among the many Latinos in the crowd.
            “I came here because people came out to protest the racism that he’s promoting,” he said in Spanish, referring to Mr. Trump. “I’m not scared for myself personally. What I’m worried about is how many children are going to be separated from their families. It will not be just one. It will be thousands of families.”
            Protesters with umbrellas beat a piñata of Mr. Trump, which quickly lost a leg, outside the building.
            The Police Department said on Wednesday night that 15 protesters had been arrested.
            Bianca Rivera, 25, of East Harlem, described Mr. Trump’s election as something that was “not supposed to happen.”
            “We’re living in a country that’s supposed to be united, a melting pot,” she said. “It’s exposing all these underground racists and sexists.”
            Elsewhere in the country, college students gathered in spontaneous marches and asked university leaders to schedule meetings to reflect on the results.
            After Mr. Trump’s victory speech, more than 2,000 students at the University of California, Los Angeles, marched through the streets of the campus’s Westwood neighborhood.
            There were similar protests at the University of Southern California, in Los Angeles; University of California campuses in Berkeley, San Diego and Santa Barbara; Temple University, in Philadelphia; and the University of Massachusetts.
            High school students also walked out of classes in protest in several cities.
            As U.C.L.A. students made their way to classes on Wednesday, they talked about how to make sense of an outcome that had seemed impossible a day earlier.
            “I’m more than a little nervous about the future,” said Blanca Torres, a sophomore anthropology major. “We all want to have conversations with each other, to figure out how to move forward. There’s a whole new reality out there for us now.”
            Chuy Fernandez, a fifth-year economics student, said he was eager to air his unease with his peers.
            “I’m feeling sad with this huge sense of uncertainty,” Mr. Fernandez said. The son of a Mexican immigrant, he said it was difficult not to take the outcome personally.
            “We’re all just kind of waiting for a ticking time bomb, like looking around and thinking who will be deported,” he said. “That’s the exact opposite of what most of us thought would happen.”
            On Facebook, a page titled “Not My President” called for protesters to gather on Inauguration Day, Jan. 20, in the nation’s capital.
            “We refuse to recognize Donald Trump as the president of the United States, and refuse to take orders from a government that puts bigots into power,” the organizers wrote.
            “We have to make it clear to the public that we did not choose this man for office and that we won’t stand for his ideologies.”




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            13)  U.S. Says It Has Killed 119 Civilians in Iraq and Syria Since 2014


            WASHINGTON — The United States has killed 119 civilians in Iraq and Syria since it began military operations against the Islamic State there in 2014, military officials said Wednesday.
            In each case, the American military followed the proper procedures and it did not violate laws of armed conflict, officials said.
            “Significant precautions were taken, despite the unfortunate outcome,” said Col. John J. Thomas, a spokesman for United States Central Command, which oversees American military operations in IraqSyriaand elsewhere in the Middle East.
            “In most every case, when we determined there may have been civilian casualties from one of our airstrikes, we are choosing to list the largest number of possible civilian casualties,” he said. “In cases where we just don’t have the investigative resources or evidence to determine precisely how many people may have died, we went with the worst-case number to ensure a full accounting.”
            Human rights activists over the summer accused the United States of killing scores of civilians during operations against the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, in northern Syria. Around the same time, Central Command put in place a new process for examining allegations that its strikes had caused civilian casualties.
            As part of that review, the military investigated 257 allegations of civilian casualties and deemed 31 of them credible, according to military officials.
            According to information made public Wednesday, there were at least 24 airstrikes in the past year that caused civilian casualties. In June, there were six, the highest number of any month. On June 15, a strike near Kisik, Iraq, on an Islamic State weapons storage facility is believed to have killed six civilians, military officials said. That same day, a strike near Mosul, Iraq, injured two people after they entered “the target area after the aircraft released its weapon,” according to the review.
            American military commanders have said that as forces move closer to the most populated areas in Iraq and Syria controlled by the Islamic State, there are likely to be more civilian casualties. The commanders also said that Islamic State fighters had increased their use of so-called human shields to avoid being struck as they fled.
            “It’s a key tenant of the counter-ISIL air campaign that we do not want to add to the tragedy of the situation by inflicting addition suffering,” Colonel Thomas said. “Sometimes, civilians bear the brunt of military action, but we do all we can to minimize those occurrences even at the cost of sometimes missing the chance to strike valid targets in real time.”





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            14)  Canada’s Big Dams Produce Clean Energy, and High Levels of Mercury



            OTTAWA — Protests. Hunger strikes. Sit-ins that disrupt construction. At the immense Muskrat Falls hydroelectric dam project in a remote and rugged part of Labrador, the indigenous people who live nearby have been raising louder and louder alarms.
            But it is not about the dam itself. The controversy is over what will flow from it.

            The protests are focused on a mostly overlooked side effect of hydroelectric projects all over Canada: The reservoirs behind the dams tend to develop high levels of methyl mercury, leading to mercury poisoning among people who eat fish or game caught downstream.
            The protesters at the Muskrat Falls dam, which is very far along in construction, finally agreed in late October to allow partial flooding of the reservoir behind it to begin. In return, the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, which owns the utility that is building the dam, promised to take steps to reduce the mercury problems, based on recommendations from an independent advisory group and independent scientists.
            But Muskrat Falls will probably be just the first of a series of fights over mercury in Canada, where dams now supply about three-fifths of the country’s electricity.
            The researchers whose work first raised the issue of mercury at Muskrat Falls published a new paper on Wednesday, saying that similar problems loom at 22 major dams now proposed or under construction close to indigenous communities in Canada. People living there could develop toxic levels of methyl mercury, a particularly dangerous mercury compound, unless corrective steps are taken, the paper said — steps that could be time consuming and costly.
            The findings in the paper, which appeared in Environmental Science and Technology, a journal of the American Chemical Society, may inflame protests already aimed at several proposed dams, including a particularly contentious project in British Columbia known as Site C, which has a projected budget of 9.3 billion Canadian dollars, or $6.9 billion.
            “I wouldn’t say hydro is bad,” said Elsie Sunderland, the lead author of the paper and a professor of public health, environmental science and engineering at Harvard. “But you need to evaluate and look at the pros and cons of any project.”
            Dr. Sunderland, who has performed several studies related to Muskrat Falls, said officials were told about the mercury problem but were reluctant to grapple with it for political reasons. “We’ve been working on this for years,” she said. “I’ve done multiple briefings, and they just didn’t care.”
            It has been known for decades that concentrations of methyl mercury rise rapidly in waters impounded behind dams. Research by Dr. Sunderland, a Canada native, and others has shown that the compound builds up in fish and game downstream as well as the people who eat them regularly — which in Canada overwhelmingly means indigenous people.
            Mercury buildup caused by dams “is a well-known and well-understood issue,” said Jacob Irving, president of the Canadian Hydropower Association, an industry lobby group. But practices to mitigate the problem are also well known, he said, and because of them, “there’s never been a recorded public health incident.”
            Nonetheless, Dr. Sunderland said that research clearly showed that many aboriginal people in Canada living near electrical dams now have “mercury toxicity.” Her research forecasts that methyl mercury levels will double in people living downstream from Muskrat Falls.
            “Chronic exposure to this is detrimental to human health at any level,” she said. “You shouldn’t impose a harm to the local population.”
            Chronic exposure to elevated levels of methyl mercury can cause potentially dangerous changes in heart rate, persistent pins-and-needles sensations in the skin, and problems with muscle coordination that can cause those affected to walk with an improper gait, the research paper said. Children who were exposed while in the womb are more likely to develop attention-deficit disorder.
            Other studies have documented the effects that followed dam construction. According to a 2006 report on a dam project in far northern Quebec, elevated mercury levels in fish, caused by dams built in the province in the 1970s, forced many Cree people to abandon their fisheries, and with it their traditional diet. Rising rates of diabetes and other ailments have followed.
            The problem starts with mercury in the soil. Dr. Sunderland said some occurred naturally and some was deposited by air pollution from, among other things, the burning of coal.
            As long as the soil is exposed to air, the mercury does little harm. But when the soil is underwater, it is largely cut off from oxygen, Dr. Sunderland said, allowing certain types of bacteria that convert the mercury into methyl mercury to flourish.
            The effect tends to peak about three years after a dam’s reservoir is first flooded, she said, but elevated methyl mercury levels can persist for decades.
            Methyl mercury is absorbed more easily by living things than inorganic mercury is. Once in the body, it tends to concentrate there rather than being excreted. It especially tends to accumulate in fish, and in anything or anyone eating the fish, including humans.
            Billy Gauthier, an Inuit sculptor who was one of the Muskrat Falls hunger strikers, said his diet depended almost entirely on fish and wildlife from Lake Melville downstream from Muskrat Falls, where Dr. Sunderland has said that methyl mercury levels will rise unless remedial steps are taken.
            When he went to Ottawa last month to press the government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to intervene at Muskrat Falls, Mr. Gauthier brought his dickie, the hooded white canvas jacket he and other Inuit men wear to hunt seals with a harpoon at their blowholes in winter ice. Its cuffs are stained by seal blood.
            In general, soils that contain more carbon tend to lead to higher levels of methyl mercury in dam water. Based on analysis of soils surrounding the 22 proposed dams near native communities, Dr. Sunderland’s group concluded that at half of those projects, methyl mercury levels in the water will be similar to or greater than those they expect at Muskrat Falls if no preventive measures are taken. (At Site C, in British Columbia, the effect will be significantly lower, the study found.)
            There is no consensus on how to deal with the methyl mercury created by damming.
            Mr. Irving, the president of the utility group, was able to cite only two examples of remediation efforts by industry: warning people downstream to limit or avoid eating fish, and importing fish to communities where the local supply has become contaminated.
            The indigenous protesters, who included people from Innu communities as well as Inuit, want much more to be done at Muskrat Falls. They want Nalcor, the government-owned utility building the dam, to dig up and cart away most of the topsoil that would be covered by the 40-mile-long reservoir. In its agreement with the leaders of three indigenous groups affected by the dam, the province of Newfoundland and Labrador left open the possibility of stripping the land in that way.
            But the cost of large-scale soil removal would only add to the financial burden imposed by the project, which was promoted by earlier Conservative governments when the province was flush with royalties from offshore oil. Since then, oil prices have collapsed, creating financial problems for the historically poor province of 530,000 people. The estimated cost of Muskrat Falls has almost doubled, to 11.4 billion Canadian dollars, and the price it can expect to get for power exported to the United States has fallen.
            Dr. Sunderland said that it may be sufficient to remove only the soil with the highest carbon content and that increasing oxygen or iron levels in the water may also be effective.
            “When you’re talking about an $11 billion project, surely you can come up with some creative solutions,” she said.
            Though some of the Muskrat Falls protesters are unhappy with the deal between the government and indigenous leaders, Mr. Gauthier is not among them. Still, he said, the mercury issue is far from settled. “I am optimistic,” he said from his home in North West River. “But that’s not to say my activism is going to slow down. I’ve got to do more work than ever.”

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            15)  A Deported Afghan Boy Returns to a Land Nothing Like Home


            KABUL, Afghanistan — Massoud Mosavi is a bright and funny little kid, although these days he is in grim humor. He speaks English well enough that he was able to be interviewed without an interpreter even though he is only 7 — and an Afghan for whom English is his second language.
            His first language is Norwegian. He does speak his parents’ tongue, Dari, as well, but so poorly that he does not even know what it is called. He refers to it as “the Afghanistan language.” Even when speaking with his parents — his father, Sayed Youssef, and mother, Saeqa — he prefers Norwegian.
            The first time I interviewed Massoud, about two months after he and his family had been deported from Norway and arrived in Kabul, I asked him if he would say something in Norwegian.
            “What should I say in Norwegian?” he asked.
            “Just say, ‘Hi,’” I suggested.
            “Hi,” he said.
            “I mean in Norwegian.”
            “That was Norwegian.”
            Massoud and his family had spent the last four and a half years in Norway. On Friday, Aug. 12, without any warning, the Norwegian police came into their house at 2:30 a.m.; handcuffed Massoud’s parents and his older brother, Javed, 17; and took them all to a detention center.
            In less than 24 hours, before they could contact a lawyer, they were put on commercial flights back to Afghanistan, accompanied by an 11-person, unarmed Norwegian police contingent who surrounded them the whole trip to make sure they did not try to abscond.
            “They even made us leave the toilet door open when we used it on the plane,” Javed said.
            Once in Kabul, they were given $1,200 each by the Norwegian government, and two weeks of free accommodation in a guesthouse. Norway’s payments to returning refugees are among the world’s most generous, even if its deportation policy is now among the world’s most harsh.
            The Mosavis are trying to find a permanent place to stay, but are having trouble finding anything they can afford, because they invested most of the stipends the Norwegian government gave them in hiring a private lawyer to fight their case.
            They are part of a wave of Afghans who are returning this year to a country in the middle of a worsening war. By the end of the year, aid officials expect about 1.5 million migrants to return to Afghanistan — many of them against their will, and including some officially registered as refugees.
            The Mosavis were victims of a hardening in Norwegian government policies and popular attitudes toward asylum seekers. Their daughter, Aghdas, had been the first to reach Norway, arriving in 2011 at age 13 with a group of migrants after she was separated from the family in Turkey. The Norwegian authorities then paid for her parents and siblings to fly to join her on family reunification grounds, in 2012.
            Norway has now become the most determined of all European countries to expel Afghan asylum seekers. Ninety percent of Afghan asylum claims are rejected as invalid, according to the Norwegian Organization for Asylum Seekers, compared with 40 percent to 50 percent in most European countries.
            Norway has returned 442 Afghans this year, 278 of them against their will, said Bjorn Frode Skaaret, the migration attaché at the Norwegian Embassy in Kabul. Other European countries have had more repatriations this year, but none are known to have had so many forcible ones.
            Aghdas, now 18 and in her final year of high school, was allowed to stay in Norway on humanitarian grounds because she had established a strong connection to the country through years of schooling. But she might give up plans to study nanotechnology at college, she said, so she can work and send money to her family in Afghanistan. She has already found a part-time job at a 7-Eleven store in the town where the family had settled, Fredrikstad.
            Their lawyer said members of the family who were sent back to Afghanistan had a similar claim, especially because the two boys have had nearly all their formal education in Norwegian, making them poorly equipped to rejoin Afghan society.
            “My opinion is the Norwegian government has broken the law,” said Sigrid Broch, their lawyer. “It’s a very integrated family in every way. It’s heartbreaking, especially for Massoud, who has never been living in Afghanistan in any way since age 2.”
            The family was deported on Massoud’s seventh birthday, and it had arranged a party for him, complete with trampolines and other activities. The nine children who were invited were mostly Norwegians, including his best friend, Hans. Massoud was deported before anyone could warn the guests the party was off.
            The boy said he wanted to give Hans and his friends a message, which he did in Norwegian, then translated into English. “I said, ‘Hi, I miss you very much, my friends,’ and then I said: ‘I want to go back. I want really to go back to Norway.’”
            The Norwegian government’s position in deportation cases like the Mosavis’ is that Afghanistan is safe enough for families, including children, to be returned to — even though greater areas of the country are insecure than at any time since the American invasion in 2001.
            “The right to international protection does not apply for persons who can find safety at another location within their own country,” Mr. Skaaret at the Norwegian Embassy said, responding to emailed queries after embassy officials declined to be interviewed in person.
            In early September, a suicide bomb blew out the windows in Kabul’s Roshan Plaza Hotel, which was full of recent deportees from Norway. “A flower pot hit my younger daughter in the head,” said Mirwais Basharpal, 38, who was there with his wife and four young children. “My kids keep asking, ‘Why have you brought us here?’”
            Two days before Mr. Skaaret’s response, according to the Afghan police, an improvised bomb had been found and disarmed on the lane where the Norwegian Embassy is, in the Wazir Akbar Khan diplomatic quarter, the most heavily guarded part of the capital.
            “How safe Afghanistan is!” said Afghanistan’s minister of refugees and repatriation, S. Hossain Alemi Balkhi, with obvious sarcasm. “We all know that Kabul is so safe, the safest place in Afghanistan. So please ask those Norwegian diplomats if Kabul is so safe, is there anywhere outside your embassy where you can go to safely?”


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            16)  Jury Deadlocks in Trial of Ex-Officer in Killing of Unarmed Black Driver in Cincinnati




            The murder trial of a white former University of Cincinnati police officer in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black driver last year ended in a mistrial on Saturday after the jurors told the judge they were unable to reach a verdict.
            The jurors first informed the judge on Friday that they were deadlocked, but they were told to continue deliberations. On Saturday morning, the judge declared a mistrial.

            Officer Ray Tensing fatally shot Samuel DuBose, 43, during a traffic stop as Mr. DuBose started to drive off. Mr. Tensing, 26, claimed that he felt that Mr. Dubose’s car was dragging him and that he fired at him because he feared he would be run over. The encounter was captured on video and set off protests.
            Mr. Tensing was charged with murder and voluntary manslaughter. A murder conviction — which requires jurors to find that he had intentionally killed Mr. DuBose — carries a sentence of 15 years to lifein prison.
            A conviction on voluntary manslaughter — which requires them to find that he acted in a fit of rage or sudden passion — carries a sentence of up to five years.
            The jury of 10 whites and two blacks began deliberating just after noon on Wednesday.
            On July 19, 2015, Mr. Tensing pulled over Mr. Dubose’s 1998 Honda Accord a few blocks south of campus for having no front license plate.
            Body-camera video released by prosecutors shows Mr. Tensing asking Mr. DuBose for his license and Mr. DuBose eventually acknowledging he does not have one with him. Mr. DuBose shows the officer the missing license plate in his glove box.
            After the officer starts to open the driver’s door, Mr. DuBose pulls it closed and restarts the car. In several chaotic seconds, the engine can be heard revving, the officer reaches into the car with one hand, yells “stop” twice, and draws and fires his gun once with the other hand.
            Mr. DuBose, a father of 12 with a previous conviction for selling marijuana, was shot in the head. The authorities said that several bags of marijuana and more than $2,500 in cash were found in the car. His license had been suspended indefinitely months before.
            The shooting — then the latest in a string of police killings of unarmed blacks, including ones in Staten Island, Cleveland, Baltimore and Ferguson, Mo. — caused an immediate uproar. Ten days later, Mr. Tensing was indicted on murder charges as the Hamilton County prosecutor, Joseph T. Deters, called the episode a “senseless, asinine shooting.”
            At demonstrations across the country, protesters chanted, “I am Sam DuBose.”
            Mr. Tensing was fired after the indictment.
            report by a risk-consulting firmhired by the university said that the video showed that Mr. Tensing was not being dragged, that the car had barely moved before the gunshot was fired and that Mr. Tensing had made several critical errors — including drawing his gun and reaching into the car.
            In January, the university agreed to pay $4.85 million to Mr. Dubose’s family and provide an undergraduate education to his 12 children.
            At trial, prosecutors and their expert witnesses told jurors that the video showed that Mr. Tensing was not being dragged.
            Mr. Tensing, who had four years of law enforcement service with various departments, testified on Tuesday that his arm was caught inside Mr. DuBose’s car as it began to move and that he feared for his life. Regardless of what the video showed, Mr. Tensing’s lawyer said, the officer had the “perception” that he was being dragged and fired in self-defense.

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            17)  Owner Was Target, but Restaurant Workers Are Swept Up in Immigration Raids




            BUFFALO — Immigration enforcement agents were supposed to be targeting the restaurant owner. But Antonio Ramos Salazar, a cook, was the one with guns pointed at his head.
            One morning last month the officers burst through the back door at La Divina, a no-frills Mexican market and taco counter in suburban Buffalo, capping a two-year investigation into the labor practices of the restaurant’s owner, Sergio Mucino. According to the authorities, Mr. Mucino, 42, a legal permanent resident from Mexico City, along with two associates, had been harboring undocumented workers in homes around Buffalo, transporting them to jobs at his restaurants and paying them off the books.
            Mr. Mucino was arrested at his home on Oct. 18. But two dozen of his workers were swept up in simultaneous raids that morning at all four of his restaurants.

            It amounted to one of the largest immigration workplace sweeps in recent years. In the days after the presidential election, immigrant rights advocates and supporters of immigration restriction alike wondered whether these raids were a preview of the stricter enforcement policies that President-elect Donald J. Trump promised during his campaign.
            The sweeps hark back to the workplace actions of President George W. Bush’s administration, and deviated significantly from the Department of Homeland Security’s longstanding enforcement strategy of avoiding roundups of unauthorized workers and instead targeting abusive employers.
            During the raids, the authorities discovered that nine workers had re-entered the country after having been deported, which is a federal crime. Three more, including Mr. Salazar, were charged with immigration violations — which are administrative offenses only — and were ordered deported. The remaining 10 workers were released.
            “The targets of the investigation were the employers,” a homeland security spokesman, Khaalid Walls, said. “After investigating the case, we alleged that many of the employees were either subject to criminal charges or immigration violations, and we charged accordingly.”
            Camille Mackler, the legal director of the New York Immigration Coalition, which oversees immigrant advocacy groups, said, “There’s always collateral damage in a criminal investigation, but the workers in this case are victims.”
            Now, Ms. Mackler added, workers and advocates fear that this could be the blueprint for future raids under Mr. Trump — “and that would be on the small side.”
            Mr. Trump pledged that in his first year in office he would deport unauthorized immigrants with criminal records, putting their number at two million, while increasing enforcement operations to deal with an undocumented population of more than 11 million people in the United States.
            “I don’t see Mr. Trump as the kind of individual who is going to make such a large promise and neglect to keep it,” said Tom Bauerle, a Buffalo native and conservative talk show host on WBEN, who voted for Mr. Trump. “I expect the law to be enforced.”
            Mr. Bauerle said that after the raids the radio station received numerous comments from listeners cheering the actions by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. “At the same time,” he added, “they are disappointed because apparently these places made awesome tacos.”
            The authorities said the raids were set in motion more than two years ago, thanks, in part, to a tip from a former employee who was fired.
            According to the workers and their lawyers, Mr. Mucino paid weekly salaries for 11-hour days that worked out to be below the minimum hourly wage of $9. Two workers interviewed said salaries started at $450 a week for a dishwasher and increased at different positions in the kitchen. The federal complaint stated that each restaurant grossed $50,000 per week, which was not reported for state or federal taxes. The authorities said Mr. Mucino operated some of the business on the books, endorsing payroll checks to 28 employees.
            “Building and supporting a business through the intentional use of people not lawfully authorized to work here is a model that H.S.I. will not tolerate,” said Kevin Sibley, the acting special agent in charge of the Homeland Security Investigations office in Buffalo. He added that such practices undermine competition and “often come at the peril of the workers.”
            But the United States attorney’s office for the Western District of New York did not charge Mr. Mucino or his associates with human trafficking, nor have tax evasion or labor violation charges been filed.
            Nicole Hallett, a University at Buffalo law professor who is representing three workers in their immigration cases, called the government’s actions counterintuitive.
            “If you are concerned about the exploitation of workers, you should not be prosecuting or deporting worker victims, because that discourages workers from coming forward in situations where they are being exploited,” Professor Hallett said.
            In interviews, four workers said they were not mistreated at the restaurants. They noted that the pay was better than that at agricultural or factory jobs they held previously.
            Mr. Salazar, the head cook at La Divina, is now wearing an electronic ankle monitor as he awaits deportation proceedings, though he is charged only with a civil offense. “If this is just from being here to work,” Mr. Salazar said, speaking in Spanish through an interpreter, “what would happen if I actually committed a crime?”
            He said he had earned a law degree in Mexico, but was unable to find work there to support his family of three.
            Sergio Roblero, 19, said he had paid a recruiter in Mexico $4,480 for a guest worker’s visa and travel expenses to pick blueberries in Georgia. He was told he would be making $10.59 an hour; he made only $3, he said. Mr. Roblero was unable to leave the farm unless he paid $1,000 to get his passport back. To recoup his losses, he moved four months ago to Buffalo, where a friend from Mexico was working for Mr. Mucino’s restaurants.
            “I’m afraid that other people are going to go through what I did,” Mr. Roblero said. “I know that the economy in Mexico is always going to be bad and people are always going to come to this country.”
            According to statistics from 2014 released this month by the Pew Research Center, nearly eight million undocumented people in the United States were part of the work force or seeking employment. In New York State, undocumented immigrants represented 6 percent of the labor force.
            While some of his workers are still detained, Mr. Mucino was released on $85,000 bail and reopened La Divina, though his other restaurants, which are full service, remain closed.
            Mr. Mucino parked a black Mercedes sport utility vehicle behind the store last week and spoke of his employees. “All of them are very nice people and they’re hard workers,” he said. “I feel very bad for everything that happened.” He declined to comment further on the charges.
            According to the authorities, an incident in August accelerated the investigation. Fourteen men went to play basketball after their shifts around 10 p.m., at a suburban Buffalo playground.
            The local police answered a call about the group and asked for identification. When some of the men could produce only Mexican identification cards, the police called the United States Border Patrol. By 1:30 a.m., 10 people were detained and five were arrested, charged with having illegally re-entered the country.
            Later, a manager, Manguin Sanchez, a United States citizen, went to collect the men’s cash, which had been seized by immigration officers, and told the authorities it was their pay. According to the federal complaint, he also said restaurant workers lived in properties he owned. It was confirmation for investigators.
            In addition to Mr. Sanchez, 22, and Mr. Mucino, the authorities arrested another manager, Jose Sanchez-Ocampo, 37. The men provided two houses and nine apartments for their employees’ housing.
            Leticia and Saul Sanchez-Ocampo — Jose Sanchez-Ocampo’s brother — live in one house, along with four children, all of whom are United States citizens.
            Ms. Sanchez-Ocampo, who had started working with her husband at La Divina only two days before the raids, said the family moved in 2015 from Los Angeles to Buffalo to be closer to relatives. Her daughter, Magali, 17, is the best student in the family, she said, and had saved more than $9,000 in cash for her college fund. It was confiscated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers during a raid of the house.
            “It’s been like a nightmare for the whole family,” Ms. Sanchez-Ocampo said in Spanish, through an interpreter.
            The workers have received support from local churches, community organizations and a national workers’ rights group, Movimiento Cosecha, which organized several protests in Buffalo.
            Some Buffalo residents have put aside questions of immigration policy and the exploitation of immigrant labor in favor of their taste buds. Since opening in 2015, La Divina has drawn rave reviews and long lines for its authentic, overstuffed $2.50 tacos.
            Gaetano Augello, 60, acknowledged that he felt uncomfortable hearing that workers might have been taken advantage of. “Of course, who wants to subsidize that? That’s not a feel-good story,” he said.
            But he had returned for the tacos. And now that Mr. Mucino has hired replacement cooks to make the recipes?
            “I don’t know if they’re quite as good,” Mr. Augello said. “They’re good, don’t get me wrong.”

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