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May 2, 2007 Weblog:

Stanley goes to Kandahar


The Stanley Cup is in Afghanistan, visiting the troops. And helping fight off the hordes of the east, specifically Persia, no doubt.

» continue reading "Stanley goes to Kandahar"

May 1, 2007 Weblog:

"Only the blood from a thousand decomissioned F-16s could sate his lust for principled non-violence."

A Tiny Revolution continues to combine worldly political savvy with a sharp sense of humour.

April 30, 2007 Weblog:

Sarkozy's Office Vandalized in Montreal


Upon hearing that Nicholas Sarkozy's Montreal office had been vandalized, I couldn't help but bike over and snap a few photos. They didn't seem to be in much of a hurry to clean things up; they hadn't even taken down the sheets of paper that had been pasted to the window.

Some of the slogans: Sarkozy, sacre ton camp d'ici; Ni en France ni au Canada: pas de patrie pour les fachos; Lutte sans frontière contre le fascisme.

» view more photos in"Sarkozy's Office Vandalized in Montreal"

April 30, 2007 Weblog:

Iron, like Dion, in Zion

Liberal Leader Stephane Dion celebrates the anniversary of the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians (the UN says 711,000) from their homes, cities and villages that marked the founding of the state of Israel. And he dances the Hora, which would be more amusing in a different context.

April 27, 2007 Weblog:

The Next Scandal

So. It's been determined that Canada was sending Afghani POWs to be tortured. If true, it means that Canadian officers are guilty of war crimes.

But its also the case that Canadian soldiers are directly engaged in combat operations, undoubtedly resulting in civilian deaths. Which there is no doubt information about, but it's not available. The press seems content to repeat claims that "40 Taliban were killed" in fighting, and so on.

» continue reading "The Next Scandal"

April 25, 2007 Weblog:

Moyers on Iraq and Media

Bill Moyers' documentary about "how the media got it so wrong on Iraq" will apparently be available to view on the PBS web site after it is broadcast tonight.

I would imagine it will have some relevance to contemporary coverage of, say, Afghanistan.

April 18, 2007 Weblog:

Mackinnon on Post-Soviet Revolutions, take II

Early descriptions of Mark Mackinnon's new book, The New Cold War received a skeptical reaction from this corner -- to say the least -- and Stefan Christoff's and my critique of his coverage in Lebanon resulted in a bit of a scrap via email.

» continue reading "Mackinnon on Post-Soviet Revolutions, take II"

April 14, 2007 Weblog:

Ex Gratia?

A Freedom of Information Act request filed by the ACLU has resulted in a grim look at the killing done by US soldiers in Afghanistan, something which is rarely discussed.

Natually, Canadians are doing the same stuff, but that doesn't mean it will be discussed.

But someone could file an Access to Information Act request about Canada's "ex gratia" payments of no more than $2000 to the families of the people they kill.

April 13, 2007 Weblog:

Operation Narwhal will not be welcomed

Here's a pretty interesting press release coming out of Denendeh.


Government of Denendeh
DEHCHO FIRST NATIONS BOX 89, FORT SIMPSON, N.W.T. X0E 0N0 TEL: (867) 695-2355/2610 FAX: (867) 695-2038
e-mail: dcfn@dehchofirstnations.com


» continue reading "Operation Narwhal will not be welcomed"

April 13, 2007 Weblog:

Canadian Mining in Mexico

Upside Down World has published Mandeep Dhillon's excellent summary of Canadian mining companies operating in Mexico.

There are over 100 Canadian mining companies operating in that country alone.

Also at UDW, Grahame Russell looks at the Canadian Mining round tables as essentially a way to divert resistance to destructive mining projects.

April 9, 2007 Weblog:

Vimy, a Break

Rick Salutin has a somewhat sane counterpoint to the Vimy fever that's going around these days.

April 7, 2007 Weblog:

If they were smart...

...political parties would be buying ads in Quebec right about now, pointing out that Stephen Harper is a Leafs fan.

April 6, 2007 Weblog:


I haven't weighed in about the Iranian hostage crisis, but it's about time that I did. I'm shocked, shocked, to say the least, that a country would dare to unilaterally detain citizens of another sovereign country without trial, and subject them to questioning. Why, I'm sure it's only the massive media attention that kept them from dressing them up in orange jumpsuits, keeping them in humiliating conditions, and torturing them.

Iran has released them, but we cannot soon forgive this unpardonable violation of sovereignty and rights. Especially given that the British may have been in Iraqi waters. No foreign country has any right to enter those waters without Iraq's permission.

» continue reading "Prisoners"

April 4, 2007 Weblog:

Bosnian Serb Jailed

Dragan Zelenovic, a Bosnian Serb, pleaded guilty to charges of war crimes gruesome war crimes committed during the civil war in the former Yugoslavia. That's well and good, insofar as the claims are true.

But the fact that Serbian war criminals are singled out, while the hundreds, possibly thousands of war criminals that have been backed in various ways or in the employ of the US government are free to do as they please makes the "justice" of such a decision meaningless, and discredits the court.

March 29, 2007 Weblog:

Rheostatics: Last Gig Tomorrow.

The band that "would seem to venerate Rush, Neil Young and Gordon Lightfoot in equal measure" takes the stage tonight at the Horseshoe and then at Massey Hall tomorrow to wrap up 17 years of relentlessly quirky, beautiful rock and roll.

The Star has a little retrospective.

He's bang-on, really. I've had some near-religious experiences at Rheostatics live shows, cherish a number of their songs ("Aliens (Christmas 1998)" is a fave) and have always found the lads – Dave Bidini, Martin Tielli, Tim Vesely and Michael Phillip Wojewoda, as well as past drummers Dave Clark and Don Kerr – a tremendous bunch of guys, but I'm by no means an aficionado because, to be honest, sometimes I find their more freewheeling antics quite impenetrable.

» continue reading "Rheostatics: Last Gig Tomorrow."

March 28, 2007 Weblog:

Victory for Reactionary Xenophobia: Quebec Election

The Quebec election was characterized by a great deal of discontent with the traditional establishment parties, the PQ and the Liberals. The remarkable thing about this election was that this discontent was successfully shifted from the policies that ostensibly pissed people off in the first place, onto to Muslims living in Quebec. Turning anger at unrelated issues into anger at immigrants is hardly a new political technique, but watching it happen here in Montreal is pretty astounding.

It sounds far-fetched to me, too, but the media, led by Quebecor's Journal de Montreal was able to stir up a lot of discontent about basically nothing (even the Gazette didn't buy it). The ADQ's Mario Dumont had been pushing this for months, hoping to get a bump in the polls from latent racist discontent. The PQ's André Boisclair got in on it, late in the campaign (see below). With the media's help, a few isolated incidents (a kid wearing a dull ceremonial dagger to school, a girl playing soccer in a headscarf) were turned into a debate about what "accomodations" are reasonable for Quebeckers to extend to immigrants. (One assumes the Mohawk and Algonquin nations ask themselves the same question, with a bit more substance.)

» continue reading "Victory for Reactionary Xenophobia: Quebec Election"

March 24, 2007 Weblog:

300, take II

Here's a letter I sent to the two corporate-owned alt-weeklies in Montreal. The Mirror didn't print it, and while I confess I haven't picked up the Hour yet, I'm not holding my breath.

* * *

Dear Hour,

During a visit to New York last week, I went to see the movie 300 on its opening day. The consensus among the New Yorkers I spoke to was that the timing of the movie was "septic," its appearance coinciding with the Bush administration building for an attack against Iran (with Harper and the Canadian media close behind). There, it seemed obvious that a movie that depicted pasty-white greeks slicing up their attackers--veiled and masked Africans and Arabs led by an eight-foot tall dark-skinned king wearing eyeliner, facial piercings, and sporting a throaty lisp--was politically and ethically problematic. The racism and homophobia permeating this movie were never in doubt.

» continue reading "300, take II"

March 20, 2007 Weblog:

Dominion Radio

The Dominion has jumped on the independent-media-does-radio bandwagon with a vengeance. Luckily, a bunch of us are radio geeks disguised by the printed word.

The first broadcast of Dominion radio, put together by the excellent Halifax crew of Hillary, Pierre and Stuart, is now online.

March 20, 2007 Weblog:


John Powers: "When I found out that 300 had been turned into a film and was due to be released this winter I described its timing as "septic." The comic book was a retelling of the story of Thermopylae - a story that has been used to psych up populations for war in democratic nations since year one of the French revolution. The original story, of warrior idealists protecting Greece against a huge Persian army, was a familiar one from childhood. Making a film from the story I grew up with now, with the US and Iranian administrations playing chicken with nukes and threats of attacks, would seem like tragically bad timing.

» continue reading "300"

March 14, 2007 Weblog:

Resistance and Hezbollah

There's a screening on Tuesday in Montreal's Mile End of what looks like a pretty interesting documentary about Hezbollah.

March 14, 2007 Weblog:

International Womens' Day assault

Police assaulted several marchers at an International Womens' Day demonstration last week. This thursday, a demonstration opposed to police brutality is being organized in Montreal as well.

March 13, 2007 Weblog:

Advertising. Free to decide.

ForeignOffice.com has a montage of the advertising and news clips that were part of the background and scenery in the film Children of Men.

(via Greg.org)

March 12, 2007 Weblog:

Native blockade in western Quebec

CBC: "About 50 aboriginal demonstrators blocked a highway in western Quebec's Outaouais region Monday in a protest over logging and living conditions."

March 12, 2007 Weblog:

Election in France

An interesting analysis of the 'bipartisan' racist political dynamics in France looks at the outta-nowhere centrist candidate François Bayrou vis-a-vis the right-wing and "socialist" candidates, Sarkozy and Royal:

And Bayrou has been making all the right moves. For example, when Sarkozy this week -- in a blatant appeal to Le Pen's electorate -- promised to create a new "Ministry of Immigration and National Identity," Bayrou immediately reacted with a strong denunciation of Sarkozy for "crossing the line" and linking the two concepts in a thinly-veiled racist appeal.

» continue reading "Election in France"

February 14, 2007 Weblog:

Podur and Potter

Justin Podur criticized the Toronto Star's Middle East Bureau Chief for using racist language, and Potter responded, and then so did Podur.

February 14, 2007 Weblog:


Apologies for the server outage that some of you may have noticed on Monday evening. Apparently, a Hydro Quebec transformer blew up, destroying the fiber optic connection to our server, hosted by Koumbit. Apparently the problem has been fixed. Thanks for your patience.

February 10, 2007 Weblog:

Marina Jimenez: 180 on Haiti

Back in September, the Globe and Mail's Marina Jimenez published a ridiculous attack on a Lancet study that showed the extent of the political violence that followed the Canadian-backed 2004 coup d'etat in Haiti. The Dominion pointed this out in a media analysis piece.

Now, four months later, Marina Jimenez (to her partial credit) has published a piece noting that after reviewing the study, the Lancet has found that the study was in fact sound, and the editorial board of the prestigious medical journal stands by its conclusions.

» continue reading "Marina Jimenez: 180 on Haiti"

February 7, 2007 Weblog:

"Wiped off the Map"

It has been repeated ad nauseum that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said that Israel should be "wiped off the map". It has been said before that the quote is not accurate, but now there's a word by word translation of what Ahmadinejad actually did say.

The author runs a web site about Mohammad Mossadegh, the democratically elected Prime Minister of Iran that was overthrown in a CIA-backed coup in 1953. This event, which led to the brutal militar

» continue reading ""Wiped off the Map""

February 6, 2007 Weblog:

Canada's "Israel Allies Caucus"

Jerusalem Post: "The Canadian government is establishing an 'Israel Allies Caucus' this week meant to mobilize support for the State of Israel and promote Judeo-Christian values amid a groundswell of Christian support for Israel around the world."

Judeo-Christian values? Somehow, I don't think that "love thy neighbour as thyself" is what they have in mind.