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The Weekend Roundup for February 7-8th, 2015

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I was in a slight rush on Friday, so it meant a shortened Roundup. Today’s is fully stacked to make up for it.

International Politics


– Russian President Vladimir Putin: We do not want any war with any country.

– The Pentagon recommends the U.S. should establish its presence in space without diplomacy involved (i.e. militarily)

– Professor Vijay Prashad talks to The Real News about the reaction of the Arab world against the burning of the Jordanian pilot by the Islamic State

Middle East

– As the Syrian Kurds take over territory from the Islamic State, Iraqi troops do the same in a separate campaign

– Now opposition leaders in Israel are calling for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to not go talk to Congress

– Juan Cole: “Was the Saudi Government Complicit in the 9/11 Attacks?

– The U.S. sent $25 million in military aid to Lebanon to face against ISIS. France will send their military support in April.

– Palestinian journalists are censoring themselves or even refusing to cover certain issues as a result of threats levied against them

– Meanwhile, Israel is quietly allowing goods to the Palestinian territories, which may represent reluctant acceptance by Israel.

– Three Israeli officials will be suspended after criticizing the government on Twitter.

– Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said it would better for Iran to get no deal, then a bad deal. The Iranian foreign minister said it was now a good time for a deal.

– Meanwhile, Secretary of State John Kerry said he would not extend the deadline for an agreement with Iran unless an outline was crafted

Asia and Oceania

– Is there a Maoist revival in China at the moment? Not really as the state continues with capitalism.

– Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott survived a failed no-confidence vote from his own party


– Five countries, including Nigeria, pledged a force comprised of nearly 9,000 soldiers to fight against Boko Haram.

Part one of three with professor Seif Da’na about the current situation in Egypt after the past few years

– Egyptian police fired tear gas and shotgun pellets at soccer fans attempting to enter a stadium, which led to the deaths of at least 25 people.

– Over the weekend, there were reports of fighting in Benghazi with at least 10 killed.


– Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is looking for a cease-fire, yet seeking weapons from the West

– Professor Tarik Cyril Amar explains to The Real News the internal disputes between Western states on Ukraine and what possible solutions there are

Seven in 10 Greeks support Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, which can best be seen in a pro-government rally a few days ago.

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– At least 6,000 people in Haiti demonstrated in the nation’s capital to lower gas prices, although it seems more on the high cost of living.

– A supermarket chain will be incorporated into Venezuela’s state-run food system after officials were accused of hoarding food.

– Things continue to look bleak in terms of the prison system in Latin America, which suffers from violence and over-crowding

Surveillance Planet

– Henry A. Giroux: “Selfie Culture at the Intersection of the Corporate and the Surveillance States

– Attorney Michael Ratner talks to The Real News about the federal government’s request to Google to all information pertaining to Wikileaks

Financial Matters

– It was leaked HSBC actively helped its rich customers avoid taxes, making some question the U.S. government’s role in doing nothing

– Professor Leo Panitch and attorney Dimitri Lascaris join The Real News to talk about Greek Financial Minister Yanis Varoufakis’s vital role against the troika

– Varoufakis, meanwhile, said a Greek exit from the euro would cause catastrophe for the currency

– Looks like the economy in Europe is bouncing back at the current moment, although the future does not look bright for the continent.

– Who sent the most in California in terms of lobbying last year? The oil industry of course!

– Speaking of oil, the prices of oil may eventually rise but to a different level considering the major changes to the oil market.

– Robert Reich: “The Share-the-Scraps Economy

– Aldemir Bendine, a former banker, will now be the new head of Brazil’s state-run oil company Petrobras.

Politics US

– Will Vice President Joseph Biden be attending Netanyahu’s speech to Congress on March 3? Well, the White House said he’ll be traveling overseas to a soon to be announced country.

– Remember that time the FBI had a plot to assassinate the heads of Occupy Houston? Well a federal judge doesn’t want you to know after she ruled such information was classified.

– Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA): Despite the latest jobs report, we must be aware communities of color are struggling

Top Gun (Stories)

– Abby Martin: “How Exceptionalism Fuels America’s Gun Massacre

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– A great piece showing the role of farmers in assisting black community and how it connects to the broader Black Lives Matter movement

– Despite not being approved, a company was able to sell faulty tools for knee surgery to surgeons.

The Second Sex

– Women in Africa are making a stand against the coal industry, which is harming communities.

– With another woman coming forward saying Bill Cosby sexually assaulted her, Cosby cancelled two shows in Boston

Planet Earth

– Climate change will affect ecosystems in the sea and make strong storms even stronger

– More and more companies engaging in hydrofracking are curtailing operations as a result of the drop in oil prices

– Naomi Klein: “Why Geoengineering Is ‘Untested and Untestable’

– One positive effect of the low oil prices is bolstering the divestment movement in the U.S.

– The prospects of a revived nuclear energy industry are slim at the moment as the pieces continue to fall

Mixed Bag

– Brian Williams announced he will be leaving The Nightly News but only for a short while after it was revealed he made up a story while in Iraq.

– An associate at JPMorgan was found dead along with his wife at their home in a murder-suicide

– A judge in Oregon ruled taking photos of the upskirts of girls was legal.

– Great to hear scientists in Turkey were able to save the Van cats from extinction.

– Harper Lee was “hurt and humiliated” after criticism of her being “duped” into publishing another novel; Personally, anyone who argued she was duped and was a journalist should be fired and thrown to the curb.

Break Time

Bourgeois Blues [Leadbelly]

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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.