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2010 November 12 | Activist News
Disobey

The Road to World War 3

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Edward Snowden

Open Letter To Obama

July 26, 2013 President Barack Obama The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20500 Re: Civil Disobedience, Edward J. Snowden, and the Constitution Dear Mr. President: You are acutely aware More »

greed3

U.S. Companies Pay Just One-Third Of The Legal Tax Rate: GAO Study

Huffington Post July 1, 2013 By Mark Gongloff Big, profitable U.S. companies paid an average federal tax rate of less than 13 percent in 2010, according to a new study — or More »

jeff olsen

Man Tried for Chalk Drawings Found Not Guilty

NBC San Diego July 1, 2013 By Christina London The man accused of vandalism for drawing with chalk outside banks has been found not guilty on all charges. A jury returned its More »

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The Bigger Story Behind the AP Spying Scandal

Washington’s Blog/Global Research May 20, 2012 By George Washington Attack on the Press You know that the Department of Justice tapped scores of phone lines at the Associated Press. You might have More »

Daily Archives: November 12, 2010

Suu Kyi freed from house arrest

India Today
November 12,  2010

Myanmar’s military rulers on Friday freed pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi from 15 years of house arrest.

Suu Kyi had been freed and was heading to her party headquarters in Yangon, an MP of her National League for Democracy (NLD) said.

He said thousands of NLD supporters were waiting at the party office to greet Suu Kyi, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 for her resistance to the Myanmarese junta.

Suu Kyi is the daughter of Aung San, the country’s independence hero. She studied philosophy, politics and economics at the Oxford University. She returned to her country in 1988 and was put under house arrest the next year as the junta declared martial law.
Suu Kyi’s release comes at a time when the recently held elections in Myanmar have been described as a sham. Earlier this week, US President Barack Obama had, during his India visit, criticised the military rulers of Myanmar and Suu Kyi’s long detention.

UK to develop offensive cyber capability

politics.co.uk
November 12, 2010
By Alex Stevenson

Britain’s military will develop offensive cyber capabilities, politics.co.uk understands.

Whitehall sources had indicated at the time of the strategic defence and security review’s launch last month that Britain was not prepared to develop offensive cyber operations.

Now politics.co.uk has learned the military is expected to integrate cyberspace capabilities into future offensive operations, however.

The Ministry of Defence refuses to publicly acknowledge it plans to develop offensive cyberspace outcomes.

Many of Britain’s concerns with cybersecurity focus on asymmetric threats, in which criminals, terrorists and states use a range of means to target government departments, financial institutions, businesses and communications infrastructure.

But the concept of ‘cyberwarfare’, in which state-on-state conflict sees military interventions in cyberspace in a bid to cripple the enemy’s land, sea and air power, opens up the possibility for offensive developments.

Earlier this week armed forces minister Nick Harvey hinted at the possibility in a speech to the Chatham House thinktank.

“Actions in cyberspace form part of the battlefield rather than being separate to it,” he said, adding that he expected the future “integration” of cyber and physical attack capabilities.

“We still live in a physical world – so physical capabilities will never be replaced,” Mr Harvey said.

“But they should be supplemented by cyber capabilities which will give protection where necessary and greater flexibility where required.”

The strategic defence and security review allocated £650 million of new investment over the next four years, to be spent on a number of measures including the establishment of the new UK Defence Cyber Operations Group.

This group will be responsible for “developing, testing and validating cyber techniques as a complement to traditional military capabilities”, Mr Harvey added.

“There is much to learn and develop in this area. It will take time to understand fully the threats and opportunities.”

It has not yet been decided how this money will be spent, however.

Experts have pointed out that developing offensive cyber capabilities is unlikely to have a deterrent effect on other states because attribution of cyber incidents remains uncertain, as the recent Stuxnet attack showed.

Full Article Here – http://uk.news.yahoo.com/14/20101112/tpl-uk-to-develop-offensive-cyber-capabi-81c5b50.html

Student protests planned on a national scale on 24 November

Guardian
November 11, 2010
By Jeevan Vasagar and Matthew Taylor

Emboldened by the numbers who took to the streets of London to campaign against the proposal to charge up to £9,000 a year in fees, students are planning a wave of direct-action protests across the country.

Protesters occupied a building at the University of Manchester today, demanding access to accounts to see how government spending cuts may affect students and staff.

Grassroots groups were drawing up plans for a national day of action in two weeks’ time. Michael Chessum, the co-founder of the National Campaign Against the Cuts, predicted there would be widespread disruption as students staged sit-ins, occupations or walkouts at universities and colleges on 24 November.

“We went off script: the script that said a few thousand people would turn up, complain a bit, and go home; and the cuts would go through pretty much as planned,” said Chessum, 21, a sabbatical officer at University College London. “That has changed. Now students really feel they can stop this.”

A statement published by student leaders praised the storming of the building housing Conservative party headquarters by a fringe group of protesters on Wednesday. “We reject any attempt to characterise the Millbank protest as small, ‘extremist’ or unrepresentative of our movement. We celebrate the fact that thousands of students were willing to send a message to the Tories that we will fight to win. Occupations are a long established tradition in the student movement that should be defended.”

The statement was signed by Clare Solomon, president of the University of London Union, Cameron Tait, president of Sussex University’s student union and Lee Hall, author of Billy Elliot, among others. It puts local student representatives at odds with the NUS national leadership, which condemned Wednesday’s violence.

The Millbank protesters were also praised by the president of the lecturers’ union at Goldsmiths, London, who said their actions had brought attention to the cause. John Wadsworth said: “Yesterday was a really good natured but equally angry demonstration against the damage that the coalition is doing to higher education.

“The real violence in this situation relates not to a smashed window but to the destructive impact of the cuts and privatisation that will follow if tuition fees are increased and if massive reductions in HE funding are implemented.”

The NUS plans to campaign locally against Lib Dem MPs, reminding them of their pre-election pledge to vote against a rise in tuition fees that will apply in English universities. NUS president Aaron Porter said: “Its an issue of principle. Clegg talked about no more broken promises – they made a promise, and we will hold them to it.” The union plans to raise petitions in constituencies with high numbers of student voters, warning MPs that they face losing their seat if they break their word on fees.

A number of Lib Dem MPs plan to vote against the proposal, due to be presented to parliament before Christmas. The 20 Lib Dem ministers, including Nick Clegg, the deputy prime minister, and the business secretary, Vince Cable, are expected to vote in favour. The resolution must be passed by both houses but cannot be amended. Clegg today admitted he should not have signed the NUS pledge on fees, blaming the state of public finances for the party’s U-turn.

Full Article Here – http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2010/nov/11/students-protests-national-24-november

Student protests planned on a national scale on 24 November

Guardian
November 11, 2010
By Jeevan Vasagar and Matthew Taylor

Emboldened by the numbers who took to the streets of London to campaign against the proposal to charge up to £9,000 a year in fees, students are planning a wave of direct-action protests across the country.

Protesters occupied a building at the University of Manchester today, demanding access to accounts to see how government spending cuts may affect students and staff.

Grassroots groups were drawing up plans for a national day of action in two weeks’ time. Michael Chessum, the co-founder of the National Campaign Against the Cuts, predicted there would be widespread disruption as students staged sit-ins, occupations or walkouts at universities and colleges on 24 November.

“We went off script: the script that said a few thousand people would turn up, complain a bit, and go home; and the cuts would go through pretty much as planned,” said Chessum, 21, a sabbatical officer at University College London. “That has changed. Now students really feel they can stop this.”

A statement published by student leaders praised the storming of the building housing Conservative party headquarters by a fringe group of protesters on Wednesday. “We reject any attempt to characterise the Millbank protest as small, ‘extremist’ or unrepresentative of our movement. We celebrate the fact that thousands of students were willing to send a message to the Tories that we will fight to win. Occupations are a long established tradition in the student movement that should be defended.”

The statement was signed by Clare Solomon, president of the University of London Union, Cameron Tait, president of Sussex University’s student union and Lee Hall, author of Billy Elliot, among others. It puts local student representatives at odds with the NUS national leadership, which condemned Wednesday’s violence.

The Millbank protesters were also praised by the president of the lecturers’ union at Goldsmiths, London, who said their actions had brought attention to the cause. John Wadsworth said: “Yesterday was a really good natured but equally angry demonstration against the damage that the coalition is doing to higher education.

“The real violence in this situation relates not to a smashed window but to the destructive impact of the cuts and privatisation that will follow if tuition fees are increased and if massive reductions in HE funding are implemented.”

The NUS plans to campaign locally against Lib Dem MPs, reminding them of their pre-election pledge to vote against a rise in tuition fees that will apply in English universities. NUS president Aaron Porter said: “Its an issue of principle. Clegg talked about no more broken promises – they made a promise, and we will hold them to it.” The union plans to raise petitions in constituencies with high numbers of student voters, warning MPs that they face losing their seat if they break their word on fees.

A number of Lib Dem MPs plan to vote against the proposal, due to be presented to parliament before Christmas. The 20 Lib Dem ministers, including Nick Clegg, the deputy prime minister, and the business secretary, Vince Cable, are expected to vote in favour. The resolution must be passed by both houses but cannot be amended. Clegg today admitted he should not have signed the NUS pledge on fees, blaming the state of public finances for the party’s U-turn.

Full Article Here – http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2010/nov/11/students-protests-national-24-november

Disney world in which Chinese children ‘toil for 76 hours a week’

The Independent
November 11, 2010
By Martin Hickman

To Western children, Disney is a fairytale world of talking mice, princesses and dragons. To Chinese children, it sometimes means working from 8am to 10pm, handling chemicals without protection, being chastised for failing to hit production targets, and eating food laden with cockroaches.
Staff at two factories making Disney toys for Westerners employed children between the ages of 14 and 16 in breach of local labour laws and the entertainment giant’s own code of conduct, according to a report by China Labour Watch (CLW), a US NGO.
Along with their adult colleagues, the children worked 12-hour days in “unacceptable conditions”, the 25-page document says. One factory was making Winnie the Pooh and Piglet toys and the other was making Disney dolls and stamps. They also made goods for other companies.

CLW said it launched the undercover investigation because problems had been found at factories producing Disney-branded goods in the past. In 1996, another NGO, the US National Labour Committee, found abuses at suppliers in Haiti in a report called The US in Haiti: How to get Rich on 11c an Hour.

Last year, CLW found breaches of working hours, wage and contract laws at a factory in Guangdong that was producing Disney gifts after a 17-year-old worker, Liu Pan, was crushed to death in machinery. CLW claimed the factory was hiring workers as young as 13. To uncover current conditions, CLW randomly selected two plants making Disney-branded merchandise, sent in undercover investigators and interviewed staff.
According to the report, working hours were excessively long: two four-hour stints daily between Monday and Saturday were typically followed by another four hours of compulsory overtime in the evenings, adding up to 76 hours a week. The children also worked these hours, up to 330 a month, including 150 of forced overtime, it said, adding they sometimes worked seven days in a row.
Workers were supplied with gloves for handling hazardous chemicals but allegedly did not wear them because it made their work rate too slow. As a result, some of them had developed skin rashes, while for some, layers of skin were “falling off”.
Staff complained they found it difficult to resign, and could do so only at set times, leaving with less pay than they were owed. There were “harsh and unreasonable” discipline practices, and dormitories – housing typically 12 workers each – were said to be dirty and smelly. Daily food at one of the factories consisted of two vegetable dishes and one meat meal. The report said: “In all of the meat dishes, one can only see two small pieces of meat or fish. Regardless of what kind of food or oil it is cooked in, workers often detect food additives, hair or cockroaches.”
Although members of staff were allowed to join a trade union, they were not aware it existed and were not members. There was no safety training, no fire drills and “fire hazards existed”, the report said. After deductions for accommodation, meals and drinking water, one factory paid 1,100 yuan (£103) a month – about three yuan an hour. 

East Timor demands justice in decades-old massacre

Associated Press
November 11, 2010
By Guido Goulart

DILI, East Timor – Thousands of East Timorese are demanding justice for pro-independence demonstrators killed by Indonesian troops nearly two decades ago.

Mourners flocked to Dili’s cathedral Friday to pray that they would someday find the dozens missing since the Nov. 12, 1991, massacre in the Santa Cruz graveyard.

Though there is no official death toll, witness accounts put the number of dead in the hundreds.

No one has ever been prosecuted for the killings. Despite the lack of resolution, the U.S. restored ties with the Indonesian military in 2005.

Full Article Here – http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/capress/101112/world/as_east_timor_massacre

38 Colombian unionists killed this year

Columbia Reports
November 11, 2010
By Linda Azodi 

Colombia’s Confederation of Workers (CUT) on Thursday reported that the number of trade unionists who have been murdered in 2010 has risen to 38.

The CUT called on President Juan Manuel Santos fulfill his promise to protect workers, stated newspaper El Espectador.

According to a CUT report, in the first three months of the Santos government four trade unionist leaders have been killed and one disappeared. Three of these murders took place in the last two weeks.

Director of the CUT’s human rights department, Luis Alberto Vanegas, said that Santos “has made many promises, but trade unionists continue to be killed.”

Vanegas asked for a “change in style on the part of the state” since unions are victims of a “violent anti-trade union culture of businessmen with the support of agents of the state.” He said that the majority of the crimes occur due to “businessmen supported by paramilitary groups.”

The CUT reported that 2,800 trade unionist have been murdered and 190 have disappeared in Colombia since 1989, and 98% of these cases remain unpunished.

Full Article Here – http://colombiareports.com/colombia-news/news/12870-trade-unionist-murders-colombia.html