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The Roundup for May 14th, 2015

Fitting song as I finish my last day of class for this semester. Now I enter into the following week with five finals. I think I can do it.

International Politics


– Gallup: Fifty-nine percent of Africans approve of American leadership, while 39 percent of Asians say the same; These are based on averages

– For migrants traveling to Europe, they are simply doing so out of desperation

Middle East

– President Barack Obama: We are committed to working with our allies in the Gulf and will use force to protect them

– Meanwhile, Obama criticized some members of the new Israeli government as not committed to a two-state solution

Asia and Oceania

– A U.S. government watchdog said the Afghan government will still need to rely on U.S. for support

– It’s not just European countries facing a migrant crisis on their shores as south-east Asian countries too face the dilemma


– NATO vowed to counter the new “hybrid warfare” created by Russia

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

– An army lieutenant who killed Victor Jara, the famous Chilean musicians killed on Sept. 11, 1973 in Chile, will be on trial in Florida for the murder

– Mexico announced it would pay $3.3 million in total for the families of 15 individuals killed by soldiers last year

– In Guatemala, lawmakers chose another vice president after the last one resigned over corruption

Surveillance Planet

– NSA whistleblower J. Kirk Wiebe joins The Real News to talk about the passage of the USA Freedom Act and what it includes

Financial Matters

– It’s not that things are bad in Brazil. Rather, things are bad in Brazil

– Greece will not turn to a referendum to solve its problems, but will seek compromise with lenders

– What is so outrageous about our ruling class is not only they are determined to keep the status quo, but can effectively manage it well

Labor’s a-Brewing

– Looks like there’s a leading politician in New York State supporting the Fight for 15—Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo

– After protesting sexual harassment at a Mazda assembly plant in Mexico, 20 workers were fired

Politics US

Washington USA

– Dave Zirin: “Why Are We Paying the NFL to Help the Pentagon Recruit Troops?

– Journalist Matt Taibbi joins The Real News to discuss the Amtrak derailment and the consequences of reduced funding for Amtrak

– The driver, meanwhile, does not remember the crash at all

– An official from the Department of Veterans Affairs said the agency improperly spent $5 billion each year for medical costs

An official who lied about the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq believes Seymour Hersh is lying about his story

– Senate Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA): I do not think the House will pass fast track

Anytown USA

– Kit O’Connell: “Police at the Freddie Gray Protest in Austin Proved Just How Much They Love Pepper Spray

– An organization representing black officers in Baltimore defended one of the six officers charged in the murder of Freddie Gray

– Ali Abunimah: “Student troubled by New York Times reporter’s ‘Jewish litmus test’

Newly released video of a police shooting in North Carolina raises questions on the police’s version of what happened to Nijza Lamar Hagans

Incredible and true quotes from folks in Baltimore explaining the Baltimore uprising

– Amy Goodman: “KPFT Houston, 45 Years After Domestic Terrorist Bombings, Plays On

Very chilling piece of one detainee held at a Chicago black site and will now sue the city

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

– With diplomatic changes between the U.S. and Cuba, a lung cancer vaccine may be coming to numerous Americans

A new study found folks over 50 who suffer from long-term depression are more at risk of a stroke

The Second Sex

– Jessica Valenti: “The only thing shameful about ‘revealing’ prom dresses are adults who obsess over them

– Reddit will institute new policies against any type of harassment against users

Planet Earth

– Members of an indigenous tribe in Canada declined millions of dollars for construction of a pipeline through their land

– Private water companies believe it is time to raise water bills

– President Obama: Shell can drill in the Arctic as they have quality safeguards; Environ-what?

– What can reduce cocaine production in Colombia? Caterpillars

– Turns out $470 million supporting climate change denying groups is dark money, which means it cannot be traced

– Environmentalists in California will sue the state over the injection of oil wastewater into aquifers

– The CEO of Nestle refused to halt production of water bottles in California despite the drought and actually said he wants more

Mixed Bag

– The Real News speaks with journalist Seymour Hersh in this nearly 40 minute interview

– The Onion: “Shell Assures Nation Most Arctic Wildlife To Go Extinct Well Before Next Spill“; Phew, that reassures me

Break Time

I Think I Can [the pillows]

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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.


  1. karenjj2
    May 15, 2015 at 10:38 am

    thanks, Brandon; excellent roundup per usual. * mutters to self: “gotta get that ‘excellent roundup’ stamp made.” *

    please put your exams on the front burner, Brandon; we can get by with an abbreviated or minimal roundup for the coming week. study and ace those exams! (((Brandon)))

    *note to self: no comments to Brandon next week ‘ cause he should be studying ‘stead of reading them ;o) *

  2. ThingsComeUndone
    May 15, 2015 at 11:09 am

    A lung cancer vaccine every smoker in America has been told there is no treatment for cancer Socialism just out innovated the Free Market no wonder Cuban life expectancy numbers are near ours.

  3. May 15, 2015 at 11:24 am

    Good luck with finals Brandon!

  4. Brandon Jordan
    May 15, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    Thanks karen! Although, I’m guilty of being distracted by some things. Heck, I finished one post on Arctic drilling and am working on another about Nigeria.

    Although, these exams shouldn’t be too tough. Hardest one is one neoclassical economics and international finance.

  5. Brandon Jordan
    May 15, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    Thanks Brian!

  6. karenjj2
    May 15, 2015 at 12:16 pm

    bet the cuban “life expectancy” is a lot healthier and happier than ours. our perverted language equates corps’ medical insurance to “health care.”

  7. Screwtape
    May 15, 2015 at 4:43 pm

    There’s a Lynch mob a-brewing in of all places, here in Mass. Today Tsarnayev is sentenced to death.

    Capital punishment remains possible, even here, notwithstanding Mass banning the death penalty long ago. That is, in a Federal case, a death sentence can happen even here with a jury of locals. What does that say?

    What sort of reception will this news receive here, and is there anything death penalty opponents can do at this point? How will our reps standup? Who knows?

    Plenty of conflicting emotions will have to sort out following a tragedy which should not have happened at all, anywhere, let alone here. But, in the end, whatever result ensues will be revealing both at the local and Fed level.

    Appeals at the Fed level remain possible. Will our local reps intercede as best they can? Stay tuned.

  8. AJ Oliver
    May 16, 2015 at 12:15 am

    You have finals in all those academic areas? Jeebus, tough town !!

  9. jane24
    May 16, 2015 at 2:08 am

    Good luck with those finals, Brandon! (And thanks for what you do here. “The Roundup”, for me, is a “must read.”)

  10. jane24
    May 16, 2015 at 2:17 am

    In MA too. Been seeing those torches and pitchforks for a while now…Don’t see any of those local reps as likely to make any effort to intercede. Good to see Elizabeth Warren oppose Obama on the TPP but most of those she represents probably have no idea what this is about anyway. If she were to speak out about the death penalty in the case of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, they would. (Although suspecting most are still stuck on “Deflate-gate.”)