Monday, March 2, 2015

Interesting links for February 2015

Huge number of AAP-related links for Feb 2015... am separating them out in a separate post.
A wonderful school / community center in Chandigarh
A summary of plans for improving bus transport in Pune through people-friendly route maps
How female foeticide in India came about, and who were the first to blow the whistle about it
Nonviolent protesters are terrorists??
llustrative of what happens when the criminals are in charge of the proceedings.
"The UN has pulled endless stunts on Syria's Ambassador, with the obvious intent of distorting reality and prolonging the proxy war on Syria.

Ambassador al-Ja'afari maintains that he is routinely assigned the worst translators, to convolute his message. "Every time I speak at the Security Council (SC), they choose a bad interpreter who is not able to fully interpret what I am saying," he said. On one occasion at the SC, the Syrian Ambassador said he saw a staff member signal to the interpreters to switch the adept interpreter for the inept. "I saw it with my own eyes. They changed the interpreter to a poor one."

Ambassador al-Ja'afari is one of the only-if not the only-ambassadors to the UN to repeatedly over the years have his microphone and/or video feed cut when he speaks.

Correspondent Nizar Abboud has been an invaluable source of footage of the Syrian Ambassador's speeches otherwise unavailable thanks to cut UN feeds. Abboud says the cuts are not due to "technical problems," but instead often done "by senior officials at the United Nations." Of one such incident, Abboud said: "The journalists were furious about it, they wanted to hear what the Ambassador was saying and suddenly he went off air."
Monsanto claims that biotech can feed the planet. Here's why it won't
The ground-level situation in Ukraine
Revealing some shocking facts about prisons in US.
"By the time you read this, I'll be home. Now the real work can begin-the struggle for human rights, civil liberties and prison reform. I can guarantee you that I am unbowed, unbroken, uninstitutionalized and ready to fight.",-yoga-and-homeopathy,-says-minister
While I agree with the technical point, scaling back short-term relief translates to torture.
Abandoned walmart recycled as a public library
Nijmegen Sharing City Embraces No-Money Abundance
Castro compares NATO to Nazi SS, slams US, Israel for 'creating ISIS'
Castro calls out Obama for genocide in Libya
Green roofs
Hindi article by Ravish Kumar on P Sainath's Peoples Archive of Rural India

Putin to Western elites: Play-time is over
Audio version:
The most important and mature discourse on international geopolitics that I have seen being made by a world leader.
8 Ways to Defend Against Terror Nonviolently
Online platform for discussions and consensus-based decision making
Some of the legal provisions in this treaty are a direct violation of sovereignty of countries. A company can sue a country if that country makes a law to enforce environment protection!
Scientists did a big search for the top technology to suck CO2 out of the atmosphere. The winner -- trees. Yup, trees
Gallup CEO: I May "Suddenly Disappear" For Telling Truth About Obama Unemployment Rate
This female comedian tells us why rape is a joke in India
Activist Sunitha Krishnan has defended posting of two rape videos, soon after which her car was attacked and damaged last week.
"Offenders make videos and take photos to shame victims and use these to threaten them into silence. I used the same strategy against the offenders while concealing the identity of the victim. I am hoping people will be sensitive enough to give information if they can identify the rapists,"
Krishnan is herself a gang rape survivor, having been assaulted when she was 15. Living in Bangalore then, she had started teaching children living in slums and rubbed some people the wrong away, provoking the attack on her.
Syriza's Yanis Varoufakis, tipped to be Syriza's new finance minister, tells Paul Mason what his party would do if it gets into government in Greece
What the World's Cities Would Look Like If Every Glacier Melted
> Picturesque maps created
Echoing with a concern I've been having : Sensationalizing rape incidents is contributing to more of it.
"What is this cyber cell? You form a group of police officers and name them 'cyber cell' and now they are suddenly experts," Justice Chelameswar responded.
There is a coup underway in Venezuela.
In 2012, a small-scale fisherman in Kent told the Sunday Times that the areas through which the pulse trawlers have passed are "a graveyard. What they don't catch, they annihilate. Virtually everything is dead." Another reported "You can have as many as 50 dead Dover sole in an hour and a half. We would hardly ever see a dead fish before. It is a waste of time going to that area now. It stinks of dead fish."
Love in the time of Hindutva
"I don't want people to keep me on a pedestal. I don't want to be treated like a goddess. I want to live an ordinary life, experiencing common emotions. People here, my own people, can't absorb the fact that I can also fall in love. They have put my fiancee in jail..."
Chinese leaders learn that GDP isn't everything
Shanghai's municipal government no longer uses GDP growth as a key performance indicator.
Putin Threatens to Release Satellite Evidence of 9/11 Being an Inside Job
Why U.S. Reporters Are Always Pro-War

Sibel Edmonds : "the most classified woman in U.S. history"

Sibel Edmonds is the editor of Boiling Frogs Post and founder- director of the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition. She is the recipient of the 2006 PEN/Newman's Own First Amendment Award. Ms. Edmonds worked as a language specialist for the FBI where she reported serious acts of security breaches and cover-ups, and for that she was retaliated against and ultimately fired. Court proceedings were blocked by the assertion of the State Secrets Privilege, and the U.S. Congress has been gagged and prevented from taking up or even discussing her case through retroactive classification issued by the Department of Justice.

Lots of great articles on ongoing geopolitics from her Boiling Frogs Post blog.
Murdering journalists … Them and Us: The West & the Real Origin of Islamic Fundamentalism

William Blum, BFP contributing author and analyst, is an American, historian and critic of United States foreign policy. He is the author of Killing Hope: U.S. Military & CIA Interventions Since World War II. He has described his life's mission as: "If not ending, at least slowing down the American Empire. At least injuring the beast. It's causing so much suffering around the world." Mr. Blum can be reached through his website
The attack on a woman journalist in Assam and how the cries to safeguard media is gathering momentum
The Ganges: holy, deadly river
Pollution has turned the sacred waters into a lethal cocktail of industrial and human waste. Can the river be saved?
About the maker of the movie "MSG : Messenger of God"
My 2p : Mavericks are any day welcome over bores. Especially when all their maverick actions only increase the sum total of goodness on this planet.
The Origins of Indian Political Institutions: The Long View
#SwissLeaks: Brazenness, complicity of HSBC very disturbing says Swiss investigative journalist Francois Pilet
On what are the things that Indians should really take offense to.
While multinational nuclear suppliers, such as G.E. and Westinghouse publicly insist that their products are extraordinarily safe, they are adamant that they will not accept any liability should an accident occur at one of their reactors.
Instances since the Second World War of the United States attempting to suppress a populist or nationalist movement.
Instances of the United States overthrowing, or attempting to overthrow, a foreign government since the Second World War.,-human-rights-activists-are-prevented-from-speaking
In six states, around 5,500 hectares of land acquired for SEZs was subsequently de-notified and diverted for commercial purposes.
The Daily Telegraph's chief political commentator has resigned and launched a blistering attack on the paper's management and owners over its lack of coverage of the HSBC tax story, which he described as a "fraud on its readers".
Mortality before and after the 2003 invasion of Iraq: cluster sample survey
The major causes of death before the invasion were myocardial infarction,
cerebrovascular accidents, and other chronic disorders whereas after the invasion violence was the primary cause of
death. Violent deaths were widespread, reported in 15 of 33 clusters, and were mainly attributed to coalition forces.
Most individuals reportedly killed by coalition forces were women and children. The risk of death from violence in
the period after the invasion was 58 times higher (95% CI 8·1-419) than in the period before the war.
It's curious  how they're not daring to mention Ekta Parishad, even though in the video there's Ekta Parishad flags, banners all over.

Tweet by Devinder Sharma:
'After absorbing Rs 54 lk-cr foreign/domestic capital between 1991-2013, Corporate sector has added just 2.2 million jobs'
India or US? Whose interests will the Chief Economic Advisor Subramanian serve?
In addition, 4000 one-meter square 'micro gardens' were established through the city.  These small plots are actually trays on tables: on the street, on balconies, and on rooftops.  Lest you think so small a space cannot be productive, 330 heads of lettuce or 16 kilos (35 pounds) of cabbage or 18 kilos (40 pounds) of tomatoes are all standard production rates for these microgardens. (They have more than one harvest in this climate.)
Noam Chomsky: America paved the way for ISIS
Mass killing and humanitarian disaster in NATO siege of Sirte
PC of Manish Sisodia announcing cheaper electricity and water rates
What we should be really taking offence to. #NationalSHAME

Solar energy could create 1 million jobs in India. An awesome reason to hope (and build)
An abomination called AFSPA
"Pardon Us For Our Country's Existence in the Middle of Your Military Bases" - Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov's Speech at the UN
Lavrov, on behalf of the Russian Federation implicitly warned that US/NATO is risking global war in embarking on its campaign to seize and dominate huge territories, while inexorably and ruthlessly determined to conquer and subjugate Russia, having learned nothing from the historic reality that Napolean's effort to dominate Russia led to the collapse of Napoleonic France, and Hitler's attempt to subjugate Russia led to the obliteration of his Third Reich.
Another Year, Another Coup Attempt In Venezuela: The US Failed Again
    "Nicolas Maduro announced Thursday that the government had thwarted a coup attempt which was being coordinated by Venezuela's right-wing opposition with the support of the U.S. government.

    Just the day before the revelations, opposition leaders Leopoldo Lopez, Maria Corina Machado and Antonio Ledezma released a "transition plan" which involved privatization of the country's oil, deregulation of the economy and accords with "international financial institutions" including the International Monetary Fund."
The problem isn't simply that the troika wants Greece to balance the budget; it wanted Greece to balance the budget by lowering wages and by imposing austerity on the labor force. But instead, the terms in which Varoufakis has suggested balancing the budget are to impose austerity on the financial class, on the tycoons, on the tax dodgers.

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