Hana Shalabi: Day 19 and Counting

Stephen Lendman

Hana Shalabi: Hunger Striking for Justice

Anyone who's fasted several days knows doing it isn't easy. Persisting for extended periods risks health, even death.

Without food for 66 days, Khader Adnan nearly died. Again ingesting food, he's still very much at risk. Hana Shalabi reached day 19. It's taken a toll. Daily she grows weaker.

The Palestinian Prisoners Ministry said she's exhausted, pale, and hardly able to speak, but won't succumb to injustice. She wants administrative detentions ended, and those arrested no longer subjected to brutal and humiliating treatment.

She's losing weight and can hardly stand. Her health's deteriorating. No matter. She won't compromise her rights or dignity. She'll persist until freed.

Israel reduced her detention from six months to four. She responded saying she's committed to continue. Lawyer Fadi Qawasmi asked Ofer military court to let him call witnesses on her behalf. He wants those involved in her arrest and torture interrogated. The court refused. Its mandate excludes justice.

Allegations against Shalabi and thousands of other Palestinian prisoners are spurious. She's hunger striking for them and herself. Human rights groups condemn Israel's oppression. Shalabi's struggle highlights its gravity.

Attorney general defends presidential assassinations of US citizens

Tom Eley & Barry Grey

Screen captures from “Collateral Murder: Top left, Reuters reporters and other Iraqi civilians, talking. Top right, the group comes under fire from Apache gunship. Bottom left, men fleeing. Bottom right, men all dead. From now on this could happen anywhere. To anyone. Legally.

In a speech delivered Monday at Northwestern University Law School in Chicago, US Attorney General Eric Holder asserted the “right” of the president to secretly order the assassination of US citizens. Laying out a brief for virtually unchecked executive power to carry out military aggression abroad and repression at home, the speech was a sweeping attack on fundamental democratic and constitutional principles.

Holder’s remarks were cast within the framework of the so-called “war on terror.” In words intended to instill fear and panic, he declared early in his remarks that America had reached an “hour of danger.” He continued: “We are a nation at war… there are people currently plotting to murder Americans, who reside in distant countries as well as within our own borders.”

The attorney general’s remarks come five months after President Obama ordered the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, a US citizen, in a drone attack in Yemen. Another US citizen, Samir Khan, was killed in the same attack. Two weeks later, Awlaki’s 16-year-old son, Abdulrahman, was killed in subsequent US drone strike.

The Anti-Empire Report

William Blum

The Saga of Bradley Manning, Julian Assange, and Wikileaks, to be put to ballad and film

"Defense lawyers say Manning was clearly a troubled young soldier whom the Army should never have deployed to Iraq or given access to classified material while he was stationed there ... They say he was in emotional turmoil, partly because he was a gay soldier at a time when homosexuals were barred from serving openly in the U.S. armed forces." (Associated Press, February 3)

It's unfortunate and disturbing that Bradley Manning's attorneys have chosen to consistently base his legal defense upon the premise that personal problems and shortcomings are what motivated the young man to turn over hundreds of thousands of classified government files to Wikileaks. They should not be presenting him that way any more than Bradley should be tried as a criminal or traitor. He should be hailed as a national hero. Yes, even when the lawyers are talking to the military mind. May as well try to penetrate that mind and find the freest and best person living there. Bradley also wears a military uniform.

Lies, Damn Lies, and Major Media Scoundrel Journalism

Stephen Lendman

Pied Pipers & The Mainstream Media: Darkness over America.

Merriam-Webster defines 'journalism' [2b] as involving

"writing characterized by a direct presentation of facts or description of events without an attempt at interpretation."

In other words, the truth, the whole truth, and nothing else.

The Society of Professional Journalists' Code of Ethics Preamble states:

"....public enlightenment is the forerunner of justice and the foundation of democracy. The duty of the journalist is to further those ends by seeking truth and providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues. Conscientious journalists from all media and specialties strive to serve the public with thoroughness and honesty. Professional integrity is the cornerstone of a journalist's credibility."

The Radio-Television News Directors Association Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct stresses public trust, credibility, accuracy, and truth. "(R)eporting (must exclude) anything known to be false." It must stress fairness, integrity, independence, accountability, and "responsibility to the profession of electronic journalism."

Clearly, major media print and broadcast journalism fails on all counts. They serves wealth and power. They feature managed and junk food news. They exclude truth and full disclosure. Readers, viewers, and listeners are cheated by lies, damn lies, and an agenda harming their vital interests.

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