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The Roundup for March 31st, 2015

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The month is ending already?! That means less than two months of classes for me!

International Politics

Overall

– Yeah, it doesn’t really seem like a deal is coming

– Gallup: Fewer Iranians report international sanctions are causing a “great deal” of problems for them, which may be due to the easing of such sanctions

– Triti Parsi, president of the National Iranian American Council, tells The Real News what is really happening in the P5+1-Iran negotiations

– Meanwhile, Robert Kelley, former director of the International Atomic Energy Agency, explains to The Real News why The New York Times got it wrong when claiming Iran decided to ship uranium out of the country

– The White House indicated it would restore military aid for Egypt, which froze two years ago amid turmoil. Glenn Greenwald writes more on it here.

A new report by Amnesty International found a growth in death sentences as states around the world turn to more control through security forces

Middle East

– Part three of three with Craig and Cindy Corrie on the significance of the Israeli Supreme Court in refusing to provide them justice over the death of their daughter

– Israel announced it would double water deliveries to the Gaza Strip, while warning Hamas not to misuse it. Meanwhile Palestinians are still facing a water crisis

– Despite its harmful presence, Academi, formerly Blackwater, is still the top contractor for the Pentagon in Iraq. In addition, they are not very good at their job

– On April 1, Palestine will join the International Criminal Court and certainly will change things between them and Israel

– After fighting with Islamic State militants, Iraqi troops captured the center of Tikrit

– When Israel sides with Saudi Arabia on Yemen, it is a case of the enemy of my enemy is my friend

– UNICEF, an agency of the United Nations, reported at least 62 children were killed in Yemen in the past week

– Ali Abunimah: “Mahmoud Abbas calls for Arab military intervention against Hamas in Gaza

Asia and Oceania

– A district in Tokyo is the first in the nation to recognize same-sex marriages

– The U.S. Navy is worried China is creating a “great line of sand” in the South China Sea, which may mean it wants territory

Africa

– Muhammadu Buhari, the former dictator, defeated Goodluck Jonathan in Nigerian presidential elections

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– Now journalists in Mexico are turning to technology, although authorities there are still hostile to them in general

Financial Matters

– Michael Roberts: “Ben Bernanke and the ‘natural’ rate of return

– For Latin America, China is a valuable replacement for the U.S. For China, Latin America is a ripe investment

– As a result of low oil prices, Iraq lost $40 billion in revenue, according to an Iraqi adviser

– According to former Congressman Barney Frank, President Barack Obama decided not to get foreclosure relief from big banks

– Robert Reich: “The Rise of the Working Poor and the Non-Working Rich

– Thanks to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, public housing is rapidly becoming privatized

– Speaking of privatization, such a plan pushed for by New Jersey with its lottery system failed

Labor’s a-Brewing

– Workers, specifically a part of trade unions, in Argentina went on strike to demonstrate against layoffs and for better contracts

– Another factory worker died after being overworked to death. The employee worked in a factory creating the iPhone 6

– In the construction industry, Hispanic workers are dis-proportionally affected by accidents

Politics US

Washington USA

– At the George W. Bush Conference, Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman explains the repercussions of Bush’s intervention in Iraq and why he must be held accountable as a result

– President Barack Obama commuted the sentence of 22 prisoners in jail on drug-related crimes

– An Israeli group on behalf of 26 Americans filed a complaint to Attorney General Eric Holder and want to bring war crimes charges against Hamas leaders

– Oops again. The U.S. military lost $420 million worth of equipment in Afghanistan

– Sam Knight: “Bureau of Prisons Demanded Whistleblower Work in Jail Cell

– The Federal Election Commission filed complaints against Jeb Bush, Rick Santorum, Scott Walker and Martin O’Malley for violating federal law

Anytown USA

– As a result of a smear campaign from a Ted Cruz adviser, another GOP official in Missouri committed suicide

– Prosecutors in Nashville are now banned in using sterilization of women as a part of plea deals, which they often used

– Lawmakers in Indiana are now playing damage control over the LGBTQ discrimination law passed in the state

– The same “religious freedom” bill may pass in Arkansas, FYI on that; Hooray for repression in 2015!

– The Detroit Police Department paid a so-called informant to falsely testify against young black men

– A relief program set up after Hurricane Sandy paid millions for contractors and resulted in shoddy work

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– Cuba will be the first country to officially eradicate not only syphillis, but HIV transmission from the mother to the child

– The question is not whether GMOs are safe, but who holds such GMOs in their hands

– Lufthansa said Andreas Lubitz, suspected of intentionally bringing down the Germanwings aircraft, suffered from depression

Planet Earth

– The CIA is considered about droughts being used for warfare. That’s right, they believe other nations, deemed hostile, may control the weather to create droughts; I heard something called nature is causing a drought in California. Can we invade it?

– Meanwhile, some citizens living in the U.S. struggle to obtain clean drinking water or even water in general

– Last year, U.S. oil output grew from 1.2 million barrels to 8.4 million barrels, the highest ever recorded in the past 100 years

– Subhankar Banerjee, a scholar, and Dr. Michael Mann, a professor, join The Real News to analyze recent efforts by nations in reducing carbon emissions and why they are interested more in saving face

– The supposedly clean coal plant in North Dakota is actually a subsidy for oil firms!

– Should offshore drilling be approved by federal authorities in the Atlantic Ocean, then residents alongside the coast will expect new problems

– Should a counter-terrorism bill be passed in Canada, it would threaten environmental groups in the country; however, it is not as if Canadian authorities aren’t spying on environmentalists, they are

– Thanks to climate change, temperatures unusually rose in Antartica;I sound like a broken record at this point

Mixed Bag

The Onion: “Indiana Governor Insists New Law Has Nothing To Do With Thing It Explicitly Intended To Do

– Journalists need to focus less on getting the “scoop” and more on really reporting on essential political and economic questions and problem in contemporary times

Break Time

Avalancha [Heroes Del Silencio]

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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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