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Unknown Atrocities of Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan

  • I think of all the My Lais that most Americans never knew existed and few are aware of today. I think about young American men who shot down innocents in cold blood and then kept silent for decades. I think about horrified witnesses who lived with the memories. I think of the small number of brave whistleblowers who stood up for innocent, voiceless victims. But most of all, I think of the dead … of all the massacres that few Americans knew about and fewer still cared about.
  • Part 1: My Lai 45 Years Later—And the Unknown Atrocities of Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan
  • Part 2: Lethal Legacy of the Vietnam War
  • Seven Stories I Wish They'd Tell About the War in Vietnam

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

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Part 1: My Lai 45 Years Later—And the Unknown Atrocities of Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan

On the anniversary of the infamous My Lai massacre, Nick Turse recalls the numerous, less-well-known atrocities that marked the Vietnam War, and asks which atrocities from Iraq and Afghanistan we will be remembering in 45 years.

Nick Turse, The Daily Beast

/1363712614224.cached.jpg03.16.13 | Forty-five years ago today, March 16, roughly 100 U.S. troops were flown by helicopter to the outskirts of a small Vietnamese hamlet called My Lai in Quang Ngai Province, South Vietnam. Over a period of four hours, the Americans methodically slaughtered more than 500 Vietnamese civilians. Along the way, they also raped women and young girls, mutilated the dead, systematically burned homes, and fouled the area’s drinking water.

On this day, I think back to an interview I conducted several years ago with a tiny, wizened woman named Tran Thi Nhut. She told me about hiding in an underground bunker as the Americans stormed her hamlet and how she emerged to find a scene of utter horror: a mass of corpses in a caved-in trench and, especially, the sight of a woman’s leg sticking out at an unnatural angle which haunted her for decades. She lost her mother and a son in the massacre. But Tran Thi Nhut never set foot in My Lai. She lived two provinces north, in a little hamlet named Phi Phu which—she and other villagers told me—lost more than 30 civilians to a 1967 massacre by U.S. troops.

Nick Turse is the associate editor of TomDispatch.com and the winner of a 2009 Ridenhour Prize for Reportorial Distinction as well as a James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism. His work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, the Nation, In These Times, and regularly at TomDispatch. Turse is currently a fellow at New York University's Center for the United States and the Cold War.

Full story ...


Part 2: The Lethal Legacy of the Vietnam War

Fifty years after the first US troops came ashore at Da Nang, the Vietnamese are still coping with unexploded bombs and Agent Orange.

George Blackthe Nation

battle_of_khe_sahn_otu_img.jpgAmerican troops in action on Hill 875 at Dak To (fall 1967), one of the bloodiest engagements of the war (US Army Heritage and Education Center)

February 25, 2015  |On a mild, sunny morning last November, Chuck Searcy and I drove out along a spur of the old Ho Chi Minh Trail to the former Marine base at Khe Sanh, which sits in a bowl of green mountains and coffee plantations in Vietnam’s Quang Tri province, hard on the border with Laos. The seventy-seven-day siege of Khe Sanh in early 1968, coinciding with the Tet Offensive, was the longest battle of what Vietnamese call the American War and a pivotal event in the conflict. By the off-kilter logic of Saigon and Washington, unleashing enough technology and firepower to produce a ten-to-one kill ratio was a metric of success, but the televised carnage of 1968, in which 16,592 Americans died, was too much for audiences back home. After Tet and Khe Sanh, the war was no longer America’s to win, only to avoid losing.

I learned later that this ravishing forested landscape was something of an illusion. In defense of Khe Sanh, the US Air Force dropped 100,000 tons of bombs on the surrounding mountains, stripped the forests bare with Agent Orange and incinerated them with napalm. Since the war, the Vietnamese government has replanted this barren and eroded land, part of a national effort to rehabilitate the portions of Vietnam that were devastated by herbicides—an area the size of Massachusetts.

George Black, a writer in New York, is editor-at-large for the Food & Environment Reporting Network (FERN), an independent nonprofit news organization. He is working on a book about the history and culture of the Ganges.

Full story … 

Related:

Seven Stories I Wish They'd Tell About the War in Vietnam, Veterans for Peace Chapter 27 (VFP) (Twin Cities) 

  • A World Storytelling Day Event
  • 7 p.m. March 20, 2015, Macalester Plymouth United Church, 1658 Lincoln, St. Paul, MN

The Putin-Did-It Conspiracy Theory

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  • The Times’ editorial doesn’t give much reason for hope that America’s upside-down “group think” has righted itself in any meaningful way. In the mainstream media’s latest repeat of the Iraq-WMD fiasco, the Times and virtually every other major news outlet remain committed to a dangerous misreading of the facts about Ukraine.
  • Robert Parry: ‘Group-Thinking’ the World into a New War

Robert Parry, Consortium News

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Patrick Chappatte

15 February 15 | The original falsehood behind the Iraq War was that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and intended to use them against America either directly or by giving them to al-Qaeda. The opening lie about the Ukraine crisis was that Russian President Vladimir Putin instigated the conflict as part of some Hitlerian plan to conquer much of Europe.

Yet, while the Hussein-WMD claim was hard for the common citizen to assess because it was supposedly supported by U.S. intelligence information that was kept secret, the Putin-Ukraine lie collapses under the most cursory examination based simply of what’s publicly known and what makes sense.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his new book, America’s Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from barnesandnoble.com).

Full story … 

Related:

Robert Parry: ‘Group-Thinking’ the World into a New War, Robert Parry, ConsortiumNews.org  / Rise Up Times

  • The armchair warriors of Official Washington are eager for a new war, this time with Russia over Ukraine, and they are operating from the same sort of mindless “group think” and hostility to dissent that proved so disastrous in Iraq.
  • Paul Craig Roberts: Russia In The Cross Hairs

Ferguson report: Perversion of court system, rampant racism

  • The report is as appalling as it is important, and it should be required reading and study in criminal justice classes, especially for future police officers.
  • No time to read the whole DOJ report? Read my summary.
  • About that "Miracle"

Mary Turck, maryturck.com

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screen-shot-2015-03-10-at-8-16-24-pm.png?w=300&h=239Just about a week ago, the Department of Justice issued its scathing 102-page report detailing the racist and unconstitutional practices of Ferguson courts and cops. I read some of it at the gym, some on buses and trains, and finally finished it tonight. The report is as appalling as it is important, and it should be required reading and study in criminal justice classes, especially for future police officers. (Click here <> for full report.) 

Ferguson’s lessons go far beyond the abusive, racist police department. The first section in the report unmasks the collaboration of the court system and the police in raising revenue. That’s right — their primary objective is not law enforcement, but making money for the city.

Mary Turck is a writer, editor, and blogger. She is also the former editor of the TC Daily Planet and of the award-winning Connection to the Americas and AMERICAS.ORG and a recovering attorney.

Full story … 

 

Related:

About that "Miracle" Mike Spangenberg, Question the Premise

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  • There are most certainly topics here (in Minneapolis)—tax policy, affordable housing, city planning—that are very much worth discussing.  But discussing them without exploring the history (and current reality) of racial oppression and exploitation isn't just incomplete; it’s dangerously deceptive, and almost miraculously self-perpetuating.
  • Justice and the Law, with MOA in Between
  • Truth and reconciliation is coming to America from the grassroots.

Time to Indict GOP for Treason & Sedition!

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  • To be delivered to The United States House of Representatives, The United States Senate, and President Barack Obama.
  • Open Letter to the People and Leaders of Iran from the People of the United States

Sue Cohen, MoveOn.org Petitions 

GOP commits treason again-Tells Iran they will nullify any Nuclear Arms deal that President Obama signs. 

Every day our twice elected President faces unprecedented disrespect and obstruction. Emboldened by Democrats & White House inaction. They are actively violating the Constitution and committing treason. 

We must force the Department of Justice , White House & Congress to indict GOP for treason & sedition!

First inviting a Foreign Leader to speak to Congress now this! 

Enough Is Enough!

MoveOn.org Petitions is joint website of MoveOn.org Civic Action. MoveOn.org Civic Action is a 501(c)(4) organization which primarily focuses on nonpartisan education and advocacy on important national issues. 

Take%20Action%20Today%20button.jpgSign the petition to force the Department of Justice , White House, and Congress to indict GOP for treason & sedition!<>.

 

Full story … 

Related:

Open Letter to the People and Leaders of Iran from the People of the United States, ANSWER Coalition

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sign-btn.pngSign onto the letter at the bottom of this page.

Forget Hillary’s Emails, Here’s Her Real Scandal That Nobody is Talking About

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  • Maybe you don’t know the story, so I will quickly try to paint a picture of Libya for you.
  • How Obama is Making the World More Dangerous

Nick Bernabe, ANTIMEDIA

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Bomb%20with%20US%20Flag.jpgMarch 10, 2015 | OMFG!!! Did you hear about Hillary Clinton's e-mails?!?!?! Yeah I did, but frankly, I don’t give a damn about her email server, and you shouldn’t either. You see, the media won’t talk about the real scandals going on, so they feed us this mindless shit so we can all drone on and argue about it all day on Facebook, even though it won’t affect a fucking thing.

Forget about the color of the dress for a minute, forget about Hillary Clinton’s unsecured email, hell! forget about Kanye and Kim too; let’s talk about Libya. And no, I’m not talking about Benghazi. However, that kind of ties into this too.

Nick Bernabe is the owner and lead editor of the website TheAntiMedia.org, an activist, blogger, and the founder and spokesman of the March Against Monsanto movement. He is also a guest contributor to The Mind Unleashed.

Full story ... 

Related:

How Obama is Making the World More Dangerous, Shamus Cooke, Counterpunch

  • No Peace
  • Robert Parry: ‘Group-Thinking’ the World into a New War

Bernie Sanders for President? Why Not Try a Real Socialist for a Change?

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  • There were a few changes in that same speech Bernie ­Sanders freely admits he's been giving for the past four decades, give or take a j'accuse or two.
  • Let's Not Be Fooled by Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders

Mark Jacobson, the New Yorker

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012850-bernie-sanders-052914.jpgSenator Sanders speaks out against cuts to Social Security outside the U.S. Capitol on October 9, 2013. (photo: Bernie Sanders)

31 December 14 | Beginning in 1981, when he was first elected as the democratic-socialist mayor of Burlington, a.k.a. “the ­People’s Republic of Burlington,” the only U.S. city then maintaining a pro–Nicaragua-­Sandinista foreign policy, Bernie, as he is universally known there, often railed against “the ruling class.” These days, with the condition-red Republican hegemony hard upon the land, the 73-year-old U.S. senator has upped the ante, going with “the billionaire class.” Likewise, well-worn jeremiads against the Rockefellers, big oil, and the Bush neocon cabal have been replaced by broadsides decrying corporate media and the moneybag Koch brothers, Chuck and Dave, wielders of the Citizens United truncheon.

“The Koch brothers say, ‘Oh, you want to run for the Senate?’ ” Sanders thundered during a recent speech in New Hampshire, the early presidential-primary state where prospective candidate Sanders has been spending a good deal of time of late. “ ‘Okay,’ ” Sanders continued. “ ‘Here’s your hundred million dollars. Here’s your speech. … You’re not an elected official, you’re an employee.’ … Does their greed know any bounds?”

Mark Jacobson is a writer for the New Yorker.

Full story …

Related:

Let's Not Be Fooled by Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders, Compiled by David Culver <>, Ed., Evergreene Digest 

  • Let’s not be fooled by any politician appealing to high ideals when they are in the business of war and empire.
  • Let’s not be fooled by “progressives” who can’t find their spines when the colonial regime in Israel bombs the crowded ghetto of Gaza.
  • Part 1: Elizabeth Warren’s Israel Position Surprises All, Especially Liberals
  • Part 2: Let's Not Be Fooled By Bernie Sanders

Teacher’s resignation letter: ‘My profession … no longer exists’

  • Increasingly teachers are speaking out against school reforms that they believe are demeaning their profession, and some are simply quitting because they have had enough. Here is one resignation letter from a veteran teacher, Gerald J. Conti, a social studies teacher at Westhill High School in Syracuse, N.Y.
  • Charter schools and the false promise of better education

PoppaD, Daily Kos

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teacher_apple.jpg?1415669179Nov 10, 2014 | This is not from me. This was eloquently written by a true expert in their field whom everyone should listen to, educator, Gerald J. Conti. I picked it up from an article in the Washington Post by Valerie Strauss. Read it and learn...there will be a test after.

Dear Mr. Barduhn and Board of Education Members:

It is with the deepest regret that I must retire at the close of this school year, ending my more than twenty-seven years of service at Westhill on June 30, under the provisions of the 2012-15 contract. I assume that I will be eligible for any local or state incentives that may be offered prior to my date of actual retirement and I trust that I may return to the high school at some point as a substitute teacher.

As with Lincoln and Springfield, I have grown from a young to an old man here; my brother died while we were both employed here; my daughter was educated here, and I have been touched by and hope that I have touched hundreds of lives in my time here. I know that I have been fortunate to work with a small core of some of the finest students and educators on the planet.

PoppaD is a member of Daily Kos.

Full story … 

 

Related:

Charter schools and the false promise of better education, Cassie Regan, Liberation

  • The validity of the National School Choice Week message is thrown into question when looking at the track record of charter and private schools. Many charter schools face a federal lawsuit for not adequately serving children with special needs. Some charter schools expel low performing students, or “counsel” them to transfer before state tests can be administered.
  • Charter Schools Accused of Segregating America's Education System.

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