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The Weekend Roundup for February 28-March 1st, 2015

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Good day folks!

International Politics

Overall

– John Pilger: “Why the Rise of Fascism is Again the Issue

– State Department officials say the allegations of a “secret nuclear facility” in Iran will not affect Iran-P5+1

– Director of National Intelligence James Clapper believed Turkey was focused on “other priorities” instead of the Islamic State

Middle East

– On Saturday, 37 people died from a series of bombings across Iraq.

– Meanwhile, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi called for Sunni militias to leave ISIS before the army launches an offensive

– For anyone interested in what the Iraq media believes about the Islamic State, here is an interesting article on how conspiracy theories are on the rise in the country

– A U.S. drone strike killed three people as officials say they were suspected al-Qaeda militants

Part one of two with Pernille Ironside, an official with UNICEF, on the lack of international investment in Gaza

– Israel is ramping up its illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories, which makes a two-state solution impossible; Although it wasn’t possible to begin with

Africa

– A court in Egypt ruled Hamas a “terrorist organization” and blamed the group for incidents in the Sinai peninsula

Part three of three with Professor Seif Da’na on the the way the ruling class in Egypt operates and what they faced over the past few years

– Egyptian officials said at least 170 militants were killed in Sinai in the past month

Europe 

– Vice President Joseph Biden is looking forward to legislation being passed next week in Ukraine. Legislation, I must note, “developed with the International Monetary Fund.”

– The Northern League, a group moving farther to the right, rallied in Rome for an anti-immigrant protest

– A Ukrainian photojournalist died while in eastern Ukraine for some unknown assignment. I say unknown because the article notes the photojournalist’s editor refused to disclose why he was there.

– Boris Nemtsov, a critic of Vladimir Putin and his government, was killed after someone in a car shot him four times. Tens of thousands marched in Moscow in his honor.

– Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy accused the Greek government of pushing for a change in Spanish government

– Fantastic news out of Greece where support for Syriza is growing; In spite of the difficulties so far, this is good news going forward

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced he would limit U.S. diplomats into Venezuela and create mandatory visas for Americans traveling into the country

– Jose Mujica left office today as the president of Uruguay as Tabare Vasquez, from the same party as Mujica, takes over.

Surveillance Planet

– Ralph Nader joins The Real News discussing Canadian imitations of fear-mongering tactics their neighbors to the south use to push anti-terrorism laws

– Emptywheel: “Will Verizon Challenge the Government’s Fishy Dragnet?

– The Broadcasting Board of Governors is quite an interesting group, especially with support from the U.S. government

Financial Matters

Never underestimate the power of finance when it comes to the international oil market, especially when oil prices are low

– Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras: We will not seek a third bailout from European negotiators

– The People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank, cut interest rates as officials do not believe things will get better in the future

– Christopher Mitchell, an expert on telecommunications, explains to The Real News about the efforts in pressuring the FCC on Net Neutrality and what is needed next

– Professor William Black explains to The Real News the relationship between the corrupt HSBC company and lazy European regulators

– Potential GDP before The Great Recession may never return due to the severity of the financial crisis

Labor’s a-Brewing

– The Real News reports on the efforts of the National Nurses Union in stopping the Trans-Pacific Partnership

– Michelle Chen: “It Would Cost Just 5 Cents More Per Plane Ticket to Get Airport Catering Workers Some Decent Healthcare

Great news as a court ruled in favor of immigrants who were abused and lured by a U.S. company with promises of visas and money

Politics US

Washington USA

– William Blum: “The Ideology of the American Media is That it Believes That It Doesn’t Have any Ideology

– Attorney Michael Ratner discusses to The Real News the consequences of recent verdict against the Palestinian Authority in a U.S. court

– At the Couldn’t Possibly Anticipated Comedy conference, former NSA Michael Hayden called himself an “unrelenting libertarian.” Everyone in the audience laughed.

– At the Cantankerous Political Authorities Come event, Rand Paul won a straw poll for presidential candidates with Scott Walker in second place

– Speaker of the House John Boehner denied there was an internal revolt in the Republican Party after a shutdown of the Department of Homeland Security was averted

Anytown USA

– We know of Scott Walker as governor of Wisconsin, but what did he do when he wasn’t governor? Well, he liked using private prisons for his political benefit of course.

– Speaking of Wisconsin, the left needs to think about its next move should they want to oust the right-wing Walker government.

– Activists in Chicago, angry about the black sites in the city, demand investigations into the use of such sites

– Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old, is responsible for his own death by police offices, according to the city of Cleveland in a trial involving the 12-year-old’s death; Did I mentioned Rice is a 12-year-old? Just want to make sure.

We Don’t Need No Education

– The state of Maryland is interested in expanding charter schools, although it may come at a cost for unions

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– It is far too simple to say “why do people doubt science” when it comes to the issue of GMOs

The Second Sex

– Women, especially those earning very little, are facing financial restrictions when getting an abortion

A new study found sex workers in the U.K. originally worked in industries like retail or health care and pressures like finances led them to sex work

Planet Earth

New research found the Black Death in Europe during the 14th century was caused by the change in climate in Asia

Mixed Bag

– Ed Walker: “Piketty Gets A Laugh At Mankiw’s Expense

– The state of the left in the U.S. is extremely weak and, at this point, it seems a violent revolution could radically change everything; Hard to agree with the author. Wouldn’t there be the issue of opportunists like in China?

A 25-minute reflection of Malcolm X’s impact in the past and in contemporary

– Ken Silverstein: “Where Journalism Goes to Die“; Quite damning insight into First Look Media

Break Time

Times Are Tough In Rock ‘n’ Roll [Elizabeth Cook]

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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.

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