Category: Politics Scene

Guatemala sends 3,000 troops to disputed border with Belize

Guatemala sends 3,000 troops to disputed border with Belize

Guatemala has sent 3,000 troops to its disputed border with Belize as “preventive measure” after a 13-year-old boy was shot dead.

The two countries are disputing the shooting’s facts in the latest territorial dispute. “It is not a declaration of war,” Guatemala defense minister Williams Mansilla told reporters.

Julio Rene Alvarado Ruano was walking home from working in the fields last week when he was shot. His father and brother were also wounded, according to Mansilla.

Belize disputes the account, calling it a “justifiable self-defense.” Belize’s government said in a statement Friday its security forces were investigating illegal land clearing in the Cebada area of the Chiquibul National Park in western Belize when they detained a Guatemalan man suspected of illicit activities. It said the patrol came under fire around nightfall and shot back in self-defense. Before leaving just inside Belizean territory, the soldiers found the boy’s body, the statement said.

In a scathing response, the ministry said, “It is regrettable that the defense forces of Belize are the only army in the Latin America and Caribbean region that fires on unarmed civilians from another country.”

The U.S. State Department said it was “deeply concerned” but “urge calm and restraint by both sides, and we call for a full investigation of the facts surrounding this tragedy.”

The Organization of American States office in the adjacency zone is planning an investigation at the request of both governments. “The OAS General Secretariat repudiates the death of a Guatemalan minor at the hands of a Belizean patrol and urges both sides to redouble efforts to establish a lasting peace in the adjacency zone between the two countries,” the OAS said in a statement.

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The Panama Papers: Biggest financial leak in history

The Panama Papers: Biggest financial leak in history

Over 11 million leaked documents from the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca reveal how some of the world’s richest and most powerful people hide their wealth in tax havens. It is being described as the biggest such leak in history.

It is claimed that secret offshore deals and loans worth $2 billion are linked to the inner circle of Vladimir Putin, although the Russian President is not himself named in the files which allegedly show some firms domiciled in tax havens were being used for suspected money laundering and tax evasion.

A Kremlin spokesman says the investigation was aimed at discrediting the president and had been conducted by former US intelligence staff.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is listed as having offshore wealth – one of 12 current or former leaders mentioned in the files. Around 60 people with close ties to leaders also feature including Li Xiaolin, the daughter of former Chinese Prime Minister Li Peng.

Argentina’s President Mauricio Macri, making headlines recently for the right reasons by hosting President Obama, is named in the data leak as is Iceland’s Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, now under pressure to resign amid claims he failed to declare a stake in an offshore firm .

There is also embarrassment for Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron, whose late father Ian is listed as a client of the law firm although there is no suggestion he did anything wrong.

The UK’s PM Is due to host a major summit on tackling ‘tax secrecy’ next month. And it is not only politicians who are implicated in the leaks with world football players of the year Lionel Messi and Michel Platini, the former head of European football’s governing body UEFA, also on the list.

Owning an offshore firm is not, in itself, illegal but with this leak raising claims of illicit activities, the ball is now in Mossack Fonseca’s court to respond. Reacting to the allegations, the firm has staunchly defended its reputation and vehemently denied any wrongdoing.

About The Panama Papers

The Panama Papers are a leaked set of 11.5 million confidential documents created by the Panamanian corporate service provider Mossack Fonseca that provide detailed information on more than 214,000 offshore companies, including the identities of shareholders and directors. The documents identify (as directors and shareholders of such companies) current government leaders from five countries — Argentina, Iceland, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine and the United Arab Emirates — as well as government officials, close relatives and close associates of various heads of government of more than 40 other countries, including Brazil, China, Peru, France, India, Malaysia, Mexico, Pakistan, Indonesia, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Syria and the United Kingdom.

Comprising documents created since the 1970s that amount to 2.6 terabytes of data, the papers were supplied to the Süddeutsche Zeitung in August 2015 by an anonymous source, and subsequently to the U.S.-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ). The papers were distributed to and analyzed by about 400 journalists at 107 media organizations in more than 80 countries. The first news reports based on the set, along with 149 of the documents themselves, were published on April 3, 2016, and a full list of companies is to be released in early May 2016.

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Vote Trump, get dumped. Could it really be that simple?

Vote Trump, get dumped. Could it really be that simple?

John Waters says if you go home with someone and they don’t have any books, don’t sleep with them. The implication here is twofold. One, that your desire will have evaporated upon catching sight of a shelf heavy only with a cactus, a Two and a Half Men box set, and a miniature ceramic gnome opening his coat with the words “Say hello to my little friend” engraved by his feet. Two, that sex is powerful, and should not be shared, as a matter of course, with a person who does not respect literature. That you should not reward bad behaviour, especially with something as magnificent as your naked body in the half light.

Of course there are exceptions. Let’s not forget the “never kissed a Tory” silliness. And there’s nothing less attractive than a person who loves books too much – who fetishises the “written word” and buys that cologne said to smell of “old paper”. Less boner-kill than boner-apocalypse, if you like books so much Alec why don’t you MARRY one, Jesus. But the point holds: use your sex wisely, and dumb people don’t get laid.

In Ohio a couple have started a movement called Vote Trump, Get Dumped. Alongside a selection of his quotes (including “26,000 unreported sexual assaults in the military – only 238 convictions. What did these geniuses expect when they put men & women together?” and “If Hillary Clinton can’t satisfy her husband, what makes her think she can satisfy America?”) they lay out their plan for an anti-Trump sex strike. “To cast a vote for Trump is to agree with his sexist…offensive treatment of women,” they say, asking people to pledge that they won’t “date, sleep with or canoodle with” anyone who supports Donald Trump.

Vote Trump, get dumped. Could it really be that simple?

For an Ameriphile like me, the US can appear as moulded plastic, neon, wipe-clean and fabulous. When Obama was elected, we basked in the glory, reflected. So when we see Donald Trump (assumed by many of us initially to be an April Fool of a candidate, a man who looks like two plastic bags caught in a tree through high winds) with a serious shot at the presidency, we wonder what it says about us, and a country that we revere.

People, real people, are voting for him. And others who aren’t continue to love them. Are wives rolling their eyes as husbands explain why a wall must be built along the Mexican border? Staying quiet while the father of their children nods to the necessity of restricting travel on the basis of religion, waiting for ten when he’ll fall asleep in his big chair?

I’ve started searching online for stories of Americans struggling with their partners’ support of Trump. And though his supporters are mainly straight men (half of American women have a “very unfavourable” view of him), there are some who don’t fit the mould. A man called Tee Lee posted a photo of his condo in Trump Tower, with the comment: “As an African American, I have always loved Trump.” He went to bed. The next day he tweeted: “My partner for 6 years has just broken up with me, just because I support Donald Trump and his ideas. #gaysfortrump #gay #sad.” Perhaps his boyfriend was supporting the sex strike.

One problem with the Vote Trump, Get Dumped movement for women, though, is that surely if their partners cared about what they thought, they wouldn’t be behind Trump in the first place. “You have to treat ’em like shit,” he’s reported to have advised a friend.

But could it change things? Really? Sex strikes have a history of, if not working, then at least changing conversations, even though they appear to verify the dull idea of men as entitled to sex, and women as vulnerable vessels whose only power resides in their pants. When sex strikes work – one held in Kenya in 2009, when women protested against political infighting, is said to have led to a stable government within a week – they work in spite of sex. They work because people turn their heads. The media starts to pay attention. Movements like the one in Ohio could be powerful not because they encourage women to withhold sex but because they encourage undecided voters to learn how their potential president feels about women.

Until then, bear in mind that your remarkably effective safe word for use in consensual bedroom liaisons remains “Donald”.

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Vietnam: Bringing the War Home

Vietnam: Bringing the War Home
The presence of television had not deterred South Vietnam’s police chief from shooting a bound Vietcong suspect in the head on camera during the Tet offensive.

As the Vietnam War shook the country’s faith in their government, it also influenced writers, philosophers and theologians to question the metaphysical implications of these events. Vietnam, the first rock’n’ roll war, was also the first television war, with combat footage on the nightly news.

Johnson tried assiduously to manage television coverage of the war, pundits debated endlessly about whether television had “brought the war home” or had trivialized it as just another interruption in the stream of commercials, and whether the scenes of carnage and the reports of American atrocities had numbed its audience or had increased anti-war sentiment or street violence.

Television reporting was brutally attracted to scenes of violence and dissent – they made good pictures. By the end of the 1960s political groups denied conventional access to the media had recognized the staged act of violence as an effective means of gaining attention. Terrorism happened for the television camera.
Johnson’s successor, Richard Nixon, saw the media as his enemy.

Although his1968 campaign was an object – lesson in the packaging of a candidate’s image, his attitude had been indelibly marked by his failure in the televised debates with Kennedy in 1960. Even before the Watergate Senate hearings topped the ratings in 1974, Nixon and his staff regularly denounced television’s “nattering nabobs of negativism.”

In common with most Western television systems, the Federal Communications Commissions Fairness Doctrine enforced the provision of equal time for the expression of opposing views on any given issue. Its effect was to secure the middle ground for television itself, and to make its presenters the arbiters of political dispute. Television’s credibility relied on its apparent neutrality, something that marked it out from the partisan allegiances of newspapers.

By the late 1960s television news was expected to be profitable as well as prestigious. CBS Evening News cost $7 million to produce in 1969, and made a profit of $13 million. The need for pictorial content meant that television took to “managing” the production of news in ways reminiscent of the “yellow press” at the beginning of the century. Needing to deliver stories with both drama and immediacy, journalists passed from gathering news to creating it, in the form of predictable and manageable events such as press conferences and publicity stunts.

American youth, on one hand, are brought up in the knowledge of American history, which includes many well-known and glorified examples of “rugged individualism,” and are encouraged to emulate this “truly American” trait. On the other hand, however, American youth are constantly challenged to conform to national and patriotic standards requiring high degrees of conformity to majority opinion.

Although these conflicting values have of course been a natural part of any era, they appear to have been unusually intense during the late 1960’s when dissent and counterdissent concerning the war in South Vietnam ran high. Some of the basic questions that emerged for the sociological observer concerned the surprisingly widespread public opinion which perceived dissent not as an expression of independent individual thinking and believing but as subversive and “un-American” conduct.

The music took shape amid the creative ferment and changing dynamics of the mid-60s, as popular music became more overtly political; opposition to the Vietnam War mounted; and the civil rights movement grew to encompass different minorities who began organizing and demanding changes to the status quo.

Television news stimulated an ever-growing cynicism and disaffection with politics by its emphasis on dissent and disagreement. At the same time the medium itself became the vehicle for the normal. It existed to sell viewers to advertisers, and advertisers were little interested in showing their wares to black ghetto-dwellers, for example, who might want the proffered consumer goods but lacked the wherewithal to purchase them. Television’s largest advertisers – the manufacturers of automobiles, cosmetics, food, drugs, household goods and, until 1971, tobacco – wanted the networks to supply them with a middle-class audience for their sales pitch.

In the late 1960s the American networks discovered that a detailed study of the audience provided them with a way of selling advertising time at higher prices by selecting programs aimed at a wealthier, educated audience. Fewer shows were aimed at middle-aged, middle-class viewers in large towns and rural areas. More programming was directed at a younger, urban audience with more money to spend. The controlled irreverence of Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In, launched in 1967, was one gesture toward this audience.

In October 1982, film audiences around the country cheered as they watched a Vietnam vet named John Rambo single-handedly take down a posse of blood-hungry policemen and National Guardsmen in the Oregon wilderness. A rousing populist fable that reflected the public’s growing discontent with the political establishment, Rambo: First Blood became a world-wide box office hit, spawning two sequels and transforming Sylvester Stallone, fresh off the success of Rocky, into one of the biggest stars of his generation.

Most notable, however, was John Rambo’s ascension to the ranks of global icon, a position which, two-and-a-half decades later, is undiminished. One can still find Rambo mudflaps and shopping bags in the Far East, Rambo T-shirts in Africa and Rambo action figures in Central America.

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Che Guevara Timeline

Che Guevara Timeline

Ernesto Che Guevara was born on June 14 in Rosario, an important town in Argentina. At the age of two Che had his first asthma attack, a disease which he later suffered a great deal while fighting against Batista troops in Sierra Maestra, and which did not let go of him till he was shot to death by Barrientos’ troops in the forests of Bolivia.

His father Ernesto Guevara Lynch, an engineer, was from a family of Irish descent, and his mother, Clia dela Sena, was an Irish-Spanish descent. When Che was three his family moved to Buenos Aires. Later, his asthma attacks had gotten so worse that the doctors advised him for a drier climate. Hence once again Guevara family moved, this time to Cordoba.

Guavaras were a typical bourgeois family, and in terms of their political inclinations they were known to be liberal closer to left. During the Spanish civil war they had supported the Republicans. In time their financial situation worsened. Che started Dean Funes high school where he was being educated in English. In the meanwhile, he was also learning French from his mother. At the age of fourteen Che started reading Freud, he especially loved French poetry, and he had a great passion for Boudelaire’s works. When he was sixteen, he became an admirer of Neruda.

In 1944 Guevara family moved to Buenos Aires. They were having serious financial problems. Che started working while he was a student. He registered to medical school. In the early years of his study at the medical school he traveled throughout the northern and western Argentina, studying on leprosy and tropical diseases in the villages.

Che Guevara Timeline

In his last year at the school, Che went on trip through the Latin America by motorbike with his friend Alberto Granadas. This gave him the chance to get to know better the exploited villagers of the Latin America. Che graduated from medical school as a doctor in March 1953 and decided to work in a leper colony in Venezuela. He was on his way to Venezuela when he was put to jail in Peru because of his earlier publication on the natives. When got out, he stayed in Ecuador for a while, where he met Ricardo Rojo, a lawyer.

Meeting Ricardo turned out to be a turning point in Che’s life. He changed his mind of going to Venezuela, and instead went to Guatemala with Ricardo Rojo. When revolutionary Arbenz government was overthrown by a rightist coup, he took refuge in Argentina embassy. Soon afterword he joined the resistance he was forced to leave the Embassy. When it became too dangerous for him to stay in Guatemala, he went to Mexico. During his stay in Guatemala he had met Fidel Castro’s brother Raul as well as many Cuban exiles. In Mexico, he met Fidel Castro and his friends, and joined the Cuban revolutionaries.

Later, he left for Cuba onboard the ship Granma and took part in the front lines till the end of the war. After the Revolution he, Colonel Ernesto Che Guevara, was assigned to the command of fort la Cabana in Havana. In 1959 he was given Cuban citizenship. Later he married a fellow comrade Aleida March. He was assigned to the presidency of the Institute of National Agricultural Reform, and of the National Bank of Cuba in 1959, by which he was given the financial responsibilities of the country.

In February 23rd, 1961, the Revolutionary Government of Cuba assigned Che as the head of newly established Ministry of Industry. However, during the Playa Giran battle he was again called for the command of the fort.

In the following years, his many visits to underdeveloped countries provided Che with a closer understanding of the exploited nations and the imperialists. This awakened the rebel in him. He decided to organize the peoples of other Latin American countries. In September of 1965, he left for the unknown countries. In October 3rd, 1965, Fidel Castro read Che’s famous farewell to the people of Cuba.

And the death caught up with him near Higueras in Bolivia. He was surrounded by Barrientos’ troops on the night of October 7th, 1967. Heavily wounded from his leg, and he was locked up in a school in Higueras. Never he bowed to anyone. Nine bullets fired by Mario Turan, a murderer for Barrientos. Che died on October 9th, 1967.

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Heroes of the 20th Century: Golda Meir

Heroes of the 20th Century: Golda Meir

“Whether women are better leaders than men I cannot say. But I can say they are certainly no worse – Golda Meir”

When the word “greatness” comes to mind, Golda Meir comes immediately to the forefront. Her commitment to her land and to her people was the paragon of human dedication. Her complete involvement, tempered with love, fired by fierce devotion, caused the world to know that she was a true mover of mountains.

Though born in Kiev, Russia, she moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin with her family in 1906. In 1915, she joined the Labor Zionist Party. In 1917, she married Morris Meyerson and they moved to Tel Aviv (then Palestine) in 1921. Later they became the proud parents of Sarah and Menachem.

Golda Meir was nominated by the Labor Party to be Prime Minister of Israel on March 7, 1969. She held this esteemed position until 1974. Before Golda Meir became Prime Minister, she was the Foreign Minister for Israel from 1956 to 1965, During her time as Foreign Minister, she had the opportunity to work with the cooperative agricultural and urban planning programs between Israel and Africa.

Golda Meir was very proud of her international, as well as domestic work. After this time she became the Secretary General of the Mapai Party. She was Minister of Labor from 1949 to 1956, a position which was her personal favorite, for she had the time to work with and for the people.

Always concerned with her people, Golda Meir, working with the Labor Movement, attended the Zionist Congress in Geneva in 1939, to help ensure protection of European Jews. She was greatly saddened to discover that many Europeans were not as caring as she thought they might be. In 1948, she was part of the People’s Council signing the vital proclamation establishing the State of Israel.

One of the hardest days in the life of Golda Meir was October 6, 1973 – the beginning of the Yom Kippur War. It was a great tragedy for Golda Meir. In June, 1974, Golda Meir retired from political life.

Dates and positions do not begin to explain the lasting positive influence of Golda Meir. She is still deeply loved today by her people and by millions more throughout the world. Her dedication to her country and her personal concern for all people are legendary. Whatever Golda Meir did, she did for the people. If Greatness is given a name, it surely is Golda Meir.

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Understanding the Leadership of Joseph Stalin

Understanding the Leadership of Joseph Stalin

As ruler of the USSR. from 1929 to 1953, Joseph Stalin was in charge of Soviet policies during the early phase of the Cold War. Born Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili on December 21, 1879, he adopted the name Stalin, which means “Man of Steel,” while still a young revolutionary.

Stalin first rose to power in 1922 as secretary general of the Communist Party. Using administrative skills and ruthless maneuvering, Stalin rid himself of all potential rivals in the party, first by having many of them condemned as “deviationists,” and later by ordering them executed.

To ensure his position and to push forward “socialism in one country,” he put the Soviet Union on a course of crash collectivization and industrialization. An estimated 25 million farmers were forced onto state farms. Collectivization alone killed as many as 14.5 million people, and Soviet agricultural output was reduced by 25 percent, according to some estimates.

In the 1930s, Stalin launched his Great Purge, ridding the Communist Party of all the people who had brought him to power. Soviet nuclear physicist and academician Andrei Sakharov estimated that more than 1.2 million party members — more than half the party — were arrested between 1936 and 1939, of which 600,000 died by torture, execution or perished in the Gulag.

Stalin also purged the military leadership, executing a large percentage of the officer corps and leaving the U.S.S.R. unprepared when World War II broke out. In an effort to avoid war with Germany, Stalin agreed to a non-aggression pact with German leader Adolf Hitler in August 1939.

When Hitler invaded the U.S.S.R. on June 22, 1941, Stalin was not seen or heard from for two weeks. After addressing the nation two weeks later, Stalin took command of his troops.

With the Soviet Union initially carrying the burden of the fighting, Stalin met with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt at Tehran (1943) and Yalta (1945), and with Churchill and Roosevelt’s successor, President Harry S. Truman, in Potsdam (1945), dividing the postwar world into “spheres of influence.”

Though the U.S.S.R. only joined the war against Japan in August 1945, Stalin insisted on expanding Soviet influence into Asia, namely the Kurile Islands, the southern half of Sakhalin Island and the northern section of Korea. More important, Stalin wanted to secure a territorial buffer zone that had ideologically friendly regimes along the U.S.S.R.’s western borders.

In the wake of the German defeat, the U.S.S.R. occupied most of the countries in Eastern Europe and eventually ensured the installation of Stalinist regimes. Stalin said later to Milovan Djilas, a leading Yugoslav communist, “Whoever occupies a territory also imposes his own social system.” He believed that the Americans and the British “imperialism” would clash and eventually “socialism” would triumph.

After initially approving the participation by Eastern European countries in the U.S.-sponsored Marshall Plan (1947), Stalin forbade it. Stalin also sought to gain influence in Germany, though his exact goals remain controversial. Denied access to the western German occupation zones, he agreed to the establishment of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) in October 1949.

Encouraged by Communist victory in the Chinese Civil War and the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in October 1949, Stalin gave the green light to North Korean leader Kim Il Sung to attack South Korea in June 1950.

His confrontational foreign policy and his domestic terror regime (the “Stalinist system”) had an impact on Soviet society and politics well beyond the dictator’s death of natural causes at age 73 on March 5, 1953.

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Are you living the American Dream?

Are you living the American Dream?

The answer depends a lot on your income, according to a new survey.

Despite the “official” end of the recession over a year ago, life remains dull for much of the population: Nearly half the U.S. population does not live what they call the “dream U.S. “according to a new survey published this week.

StrategyOne, part of Daniel J. Edelman PR firm, surveyed 1,008 Americans and found 48% of respondents answered “no” when asked: “Are you living the American dream today?”

In households earning between $ 40,000 and $ 50,000 per year, only 41% responded affirmatively to the question. However, for households earning more than – those at or above $ 75,000 per year – 71% of respondents said they lived the American dream. This supports the idea that money might not be everything, but it helps.

The survey also suggests a lack of faith in the possibility of upward mobility: the 48% who said they do not live the American dream, more than half said they did not think they ever would.

Define the American dream, of course, will vary from person to person. Although stereotyped as one might think of the suburban house, the fence, a family, a sensitive dog and cars, which could be a long way from your own goals and reality. That said, the results strengthen the argument that from an economic standpoint, the locals are mixed in their views, regardless of what the academics argue.

Not surprisingly, official unemployment rate of nearly 10% – and worse by wider measures – and the collapse in housing prices has created considerable uncertainty. However, pockets of hope has been found. “Despite the doubts that were wondering if people have reached or will reach the American dream, 74% believe that the ideal of achieving the American dream and be able to” do in America is largely true and possible, rather than being just a myth. Sixty-eight percent of those households earning less than $ 25,000 per year also share this belief, “according StrategyOne.

The survey revealed that 81% of respondents strongly or somewhat (most were in this camp) “believe that if you work hard and playing” a middle-class life in the U.S. is available, 74 % say success is more a function of hard work, rather than good fortune.

So what’s the takeaway? The American dream is not dead yet, but it’s hard to maintain interest for many of us. Maybe we just need him to, and we find that it is still very much alive, that a different form. Let us know what you think.

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Muammar Al Gaddafi and Islamic Socialism

Muammar Al Gaddafi and Islamic Socialism

Gaddafi was the youngest child from a nomadic Bedouin peasant family in the desert region of Sirte. He was given a traditional religious primary education and attended the Sebha preparatory school in Fezzan from 1956 to 1961. Gaddafi and a small group of friends that he met in this school went on to form the core leadership of a militant revolutionary group that would eventually seize control of the country of Libya. Qaddafi’s inspiration was Gamal Abdul Nasser, a popular statesman in neighboring Egypt who rose to the presidency by appealing to Arab unity and condemning the West. In 1961, Qaddafi was expelled from Sebha for his political activism.

He went on to attend the University of Libya, where he graduated with high grades. He then entered the Military Academy in Benghazi in 1963, where he and a few of his fellow militants organized a secretive group dedicated to overthrowing the pro-Western Libyan monarchy. After graduating in 1965, he was sent to Britain for further training, returning in 1966 as a commissioned officer in the Signal Corps.

Rise to power

On September 1, 1969, Colonel Gaddafi and his secret corps of Unionist Officers staged a bloodless, unopposed coup d’état in Tripoli, the capital, while the elderly King Idris I was on a visit to Turkey. Immediately afterward there was a short power struggle between Qaddafi and his young officers on one side and older senior officers and civilians on the other, and Qaddafi assumed power in January 1970. He named the country the Libyan Arab Republic and ruled as president of the Revolutionary Command Council from 1969 to 1977, then switched to the title of president of People’s General Congress from 1977 to 1979. In 1979 he renounced all official titles but remained the de facto ruler of Libya.

Islamic Socialism and Pan Arabism

Gaddafi based his new regime on a blend of Arab nationalism, aspects of the welfare state and what Qaddafi termed “direct, popular democracy.” He called this system “Islamic socialism” and while he permitted private control over small companies, the government controlled the larger ones. Welfare, liberation and education were emphasized. He also imposed a system of conservative morals, outlawing alcohol and gambling. To reinforce the ideals of this socialist state, Qaddafi outlined his political philosophy in his Green Book, published in 1976. In practice, however, Libya’s political system is thought to be somewhat less idealistic and from time to time Qaddafi has responded to domestic and external opposition with violence. His revolutionary committees called for the assassination of Libyan dissidents living abroad in February 1980, with Libyan hit squads sent abroad to murder them.

With respect to Libya’s neighbors, Gaddafi followed Abdul Nasser’s ideas of pan-Arabism and became a fervent advocate of the unity of all Arab states into one Arab nation. He also supported pan-Islamism, the notion of a loose union of all Islamic countries and peoples. After Nasser’s death on September 28 1970, Qaddafi attempted to take up the mantle of ideological leader of Arab nationalism. He proclaimed the “Federation of Arab Republics” (Libya, Egypt and Syria) in 1972, hoping to create a pan-Arab state, but the three countries disagreed on the specific terms of the merger. In 1974 he signed an agreement with Tunisia’s Habib Bourguiba on a merger between the two countries, but this also failed to work in practice and ultimately differences between the two countries would deteriorate into strong animosity.

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American History: Slave Sale Notice

American History: Slave Sale Notice

Slave Sale notice, published in Charleston, South Carolina, 24th July 1769 (print), American School, (18th century) / Private Collection / Peter Newark American Pictures / The Bridgeman Art Library

Arriving in South Carolina in the 1780s, a group of 250 Africans were slated to be sold at Ashley Ferry (outside Charleston). This advertisement announces the upcoming sale.

Note how the advertisement addresses the health of the kidnapped people who were aboard the newly arrived ship. Buyers of slaves did not want to purchase people who were ill with small pox. The ad notes that half of the people who would soon become slaves had contracted small pox in their own countries.

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