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The Roundup for June 30th, 2014

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It’s Monday today. What’s on your mind?

International Politics


– Russia told the UN Security Council that countries should not buy oil from terrorist organizations operating in Syria

– Chris Hedges: “Pity the Children“; On the child victims in war

– After 9/11, little has changed in the tactics by the governmental elite when operating overseas

– President Obama will send 200 more troops to Iraq to assist stabilizing the region

– Despite warnings by the European Unions to Israeli companies about not operating in the occupied territories, Israeli companies still ignore their request

Middle East

– The Kurds in Iraq called for assistance by the UN in order to have a referendum for independence

– After the bodies of three missing teenagers were found dead, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Hamas “will pay“; Israel’s justice policy: Shoot first, ask questions later!

– A spokesperson for Hamas said Hamas was not responsible for the deaths and warned Israel the “gates of hell” would be unleashed if an attack on the Gaza Strip happened

– Also, Netanyahu stated, as a result of Islamic extremism in the Middle East, Israel’s presence in the West Bank was justified; Alternatively, it is “the thing Westerns made up about terrorism is what justifies our brutality in the West Bank!”

– The Islamic State in Iraq and Levant raised its flag in a town in Syria just across the border with Turkey


– In what is Obama’s celebration of a country’s transition into democracy, there was a low turnout among Libyans in the most recent election

Asia and Oceania

– Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe asserts he wants to change the country’s constitution to move away from pacifism


– In Greece, cleaning workers went on strike against austerity and faced brutal police repression

– Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko states the ceasefire with the rebels in the east is over and the army will retake the east

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– Journalist Raven Rakia discusses activists meeting to honor the legacy of the late Brazilian environmentalist Chico Mendes

– The Peruvian government passed a law giving a license to kill for its police officers

Surveillance Planet

– The Supreme Court declined to hear Google’s case as to why a lawsuit against them for taking valuable consumer information was wrong

– Adm. Michael Rogers, the new chief of NSA, says that after the revelations by Edward Snowden the “sky is not falling

– There’s been so much about the NSA that it may be hard to follow. Luckily, ProPublica collected all the information into a FAQ that can be seen here.

Financial Matters

– After submitting a negative review of an online retailer, John and Jennifer Palmer’s credit was downgraded by the retailer. The Palmers sued and got $306,750 in damages.

– Alexis Goldstein writes on how the Security and Exchange Commission does not actively curtail power of corporations in elections despite the mass benefits it can give us

– BNP Paribas will pay $8.9 billion for breaching sanctions against Iran and plead guilty for their actions

– Dean Baker: “Will India Be the Uber of the Pharmaceutical Industry?

Labor’s a-Brewing

A report from The Real News on garment workers in Cambodia fighting for higher wages and the few who are killed by police as a result of protests

– Darn. The Supreme Court ruled, in a 5-4 decision, unions cannot collect dues from workers to cover for collective bargaining. Journalist Michelle Chen has more on this ruling.

– A governmental watchdog group stated 1.5 million Americans have their pensions at risk

Politics US

Washington USA

– President Obama: Since Republicans are adamant about stopping reform on immigration reform, I will commit to reform by the end of the summer

– A new poll found 45 percent of Americans are much/somewhat more likely to support a candidate advocating for action on climate change

– Robert Reich: “Hillary’s Hardest Choice (and the Democrat’s Dilemma)

– The decisions by the Supreme Court today on the rights of women and labor rights give a victory for right-wing forces

– A legitimate, 100 percent true report by the Department of Health and Human Services found Medicare beneficiaries have been overpaying for penis pumps

Anytown USA

– Pew: Younger Americans are closely following the World Cup compared to older Americans who are closely following the violence in Iraq

– In a panel hosted by Marc Steiner on The Real News, panelists spoke on the structure of the school to prison pipeline and its consequences

– Ralph Nader: “Rep. Issa: Shielding $300 Billion in Tax Evasion

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– The Food and Drug Administration stated Alaskan salmon had no excessive radiation from the 2011 Fukushima disaster

The Second Sex

– Darn. Darn. Darn. The Supreme Court ruled, in a 5-4 decision (maybe packing the court was a good idea), corporations can opt-out of ACA’s health care requirement for religious reasons. Salon highlights a few parts of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s dissent of the decision and the White House objected to the ruling

– To avoid sexual assault, a New Zealand diplomat stated he had diplomatic immunity and returned to his country

– Over one million rapes are not collected by the FBI in its official counts. Wait, what?

Planet Earth

– Dahr Jamail: “Former NASA Chief Scientist: ‘We’re Effectively Taking a Sledgehammer to the Climate System’

– In Mexico, the potential shale industry is at risk because of the gang violence in the country created by NAFTA

A new study found less plastic debris in the oceans throughout the world than previously found

– A court in New York ruled towns can decide whether to ban hydrofracking; Great to hear

– FIFA, the world’s richest sports body, could not agree (should be “refused to agree”) to offers by conservation groups to protect an endangered armadillo that is also the mascot of the Wold Cup

Mixed Bag

– Christianity’s dominance in the United States is declining as other faiths and traditions are becoming more popular among Americans

– Astronomers uncovered a large Earth-like planet 16 light years away

Break Time

Soul do Samba

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Brandon Jordan

Brandon Jordan

Brandon Jordan is a freelance journalist in Queens, NY and written for publications such as The Nation, In These Times, Truthout and more.