The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.Continue reading
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The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.Continue reading
The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.Continue reading
This is a modified py-6 that occupies the entire horizontal space of its parent.
One day last May, Travis McAdam, executive director of the Montana Human Rights Network, was getting ready to make a presentation on the white supremacist Creativity Movement in a Montana museum when a belligerent young man accosted him. “Do you know who I am?” the man demanded. McAdam most certainly did. Facing him was Allen Goff, a rising figure in the neo-Nazi group who two days earlier had been acquitted of a felony charge of wounding a Latino teen in a shooting that prosecutors contended was racially motivated.
Goff, only 18, was asked by McAdam to leave the museum and complied. But the incident in Billings was significant, McAdam says, suggesting that Goff and the once-moribund group behind him “feel more emboldened now.”
The fact that Goff or anybody else is active at all in The Creativity Movement is surprising in and of itself. The Creativity Movement has survived name changes, the death of its founder and the imprisonment of his successor. It has lived through subsequent schisms, competing claims of leadership, and, frequently, no apparent leadership at all. Most of its all-important “holy books” have been destroyed, turned into an anti-racist art project by McAdam and others — the same exhibit that McAdam was working on when confronted by Goff this spring.
It’s almost impossible to say just how many people belong to The Creativity Movement, which is now headed by James Logsdon of Zion, Ill. McAdam estimates there are no more than 40 to 50 members in his state. But he says that Americans should be concerned. “There is a new generation of Creators in Montana,” he says — younger than their predecessors, increasing in numbers, and working to ally themselves with other racist groups. Most importantly of all, McAdam warns, is “you have this history of [Creativity] activists becoming violent.”
“Now the White Race has a racial religion of its own and we call it CREATIVITY,” Klassen wrote at one point.
But it was a “religion” with no deity and very little philosophy outside an earnest belief in unprocessed foods. The Creator is not an unseen higher being — he or she is simply a white who subscribes to “Creativity.” Creators don’t believe in “spirits, gods and demons.” They do believe “that our race is our religion.”
Over the years, many of Klassen’s followers responded to his insistent call for a “racial holy war” — “RaHoWa!” remains the organization’s primary war cry — and were sent to prison for violent, racially motivated crimes. In 1991, a Creator named George Loeb murdered a black Gulf War veteran, Harold Mansfield, in Florida and went to prison for life.
Klassen was fearful that the Mansfield murder would land his group in court with the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), which had successfully sued a number of hate groups for the violent actions of their members. Aging, he also was interested in turning over the COTC to younger leadership. To protect the COTC’s assets from a possible SPLC case, Klassen sold the COTC headquarters for a price far below its fair market value to fellow racist William Pierce, the head of the neo-Nazi National Alliance. After giving Rudy “Butch” Stanko (then serving time for intentionally selling tainted meat to public schools) a trial run as the leader of the COTC, Klassen turned over the reins of the group to Rick McCarty, a con man from Florida. Believing his life’s work was safe in McCarty’s hands and depressed over the recent death of his wife, Klassen committed suicide in 1993.
As Klassen had predicted, the SPLC eventually filed suit against the COTC over the Mansfield killing. McCarty, more interested in using the COTC to make money than to promote Klassen’s beliefs, chose not to defend the case, and the SPLC obtained a $1 million default judgment. The SPLC then brought an action against Pierce, claiming that he knew that Klassen had sold the COTC headquarters to him for a fraction of its value to keep it safe from a possible claim from the Mansfield family. A jury agreed, awarding Mansfield’s family $80,000, the amount by which Pierce had profited from the fraudulent, bargain-basement sale from Klassen. McCarty, in the meantime, allowed the COTC to wither.
Around the same time, in 1993, eight individuals with ties to the COTC were arrested in Southern California for plotting to bomb a black church in L.A. and assassinate Rodney King, whose videotaped beating by white police officers in 1991 had sparked national outrage. Later that year, Jeremiah Knesal, a member of the COTC, was found with weapons, ammunition and hate literature in his car; he later confessed to his involvement in a July 1993 firebombing of an NAACP office in Tacoma, Wash.
Meanwhile, its members continued to engage in criminal attacks on minorities in Florida and elsewhere, including, most infamously, a racist murder spree carried out in Illinois and Indiana in 1999 by Benjamin Nathaniel Smith. Smith, enraged that Hale had been denied a law license because of his political views even though he’d passed the bar exam, murdered an African American and a Korean American and wounded nine other people before killing himself. Hale denied even knowing Smith immediately after the killings. But he was lying — it turned out that he had named Smith “Creator of the Year” just months before.
But the worst blow of all came when Hale was arrested in January 2003 and charged with soliciting the murder of a federal judge who had ruled against him and his group in a trademark infringement complaint. (A Pacific Northwest church with anti-racist views had copyrighted the World Church of the Creator name years before and was demanding that Hale’s group stop using it.) The following year, Hale was convicted of four felonies and sentenced to 40 years in prison.
That seemed to fatally cripple the group, which had no obvious successor to Hale. Those who remained associated with it were forced by the outcome of the federal case to begin using a different name, and they selected The Creativity Movement. But the group was extremely weak, with various individuals vying for Hale’s scepter unsuccessfully.
Eventually, in 2007, one group of former WCOTC members formed an alternative organization called the Creativity Alliance. The Creativity Alliance viewed Klassen as its founder, to be sure, but eschewed the goal of a future race war and also decided that “it is in the best interests of Creativity for us to adopt a policy of non-participation in the ‘White Power’ social scene.” Still, the Creativity Alliance, which remains active today with eight chapters in seven states, does not seem far removed from its origins. One article on its website rants about “niggers” and “the hideous Jews” and ends with “White man fight!”
The Creativity Alliance’s declaration of non-participation in the movement — whatever that may really suggest — does not mean that more active Creators have gone away. On the contrary, they are showing definite signs of life.
That’s why McAdam’s Montana Human Rights Network jumped at the chance when, in 2003, an ex-Creator offered the group 4,100 of Klassen’s hard-copy books for a mere $300. The network purchased the books and provided them to police departments, scholars and other non-racists with an interest. Teaming up with a Helena art museum, it also gave thousands of copies of the books to artists for an anti-racist exhibit. The books were pulped, cut up and made into other objects and shown around the state. It had to be a low moment for Creators, who saw their version of Holy Scripture being ridiculed publicly.
The loss of the physical books, which can still be downloaded and printed out at The Creativity Movement’s website, has not wrecked the group, however. In fact, in recent months Creators have distributed literature in several cities and staged rallies in Kalispell and Bozeman, where they carried signs and flags.
Another sign of a limited Creativity resurgence is criminal violence.
In the end, Goff, who claimed the shooting was accidental, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of carrying a concealed weapon — brass knuckles. But he went to trial on a charge of felony assault; a jury acquitted him of that charge after a judge ruled that prosecutors could not introduce evidence of his racist activities, including pictures of Goff with guns, a swastika and racist literature. He was sentenced to six months of probation and a fine of $150.
In Montana, the current epicenter of the Creativity movement, Goff and his mainly young compatriots now seem to be enjoying some real success in the trial’s aftermath. “He has, and some of the people he has recruited have, an edge in that they can recruit on a peer level,” McAdam says. Since Goff’s acquittal, he adds, “there has been a lot more chatter online. We’ve always felt he’s one of the ringleaders.”
The resurgence of The Creativity Movement and other white supremacist activity in Montana — where another racist group, Pioneer Little Europe, showed a pro-Nazi film at the Kalispell library in April — shows no signs of abating, McAdam says. And that may only be a sign of bigger things.
“I think what’s going on in Montana … is a microcosm of what is happening nationally,” McAdam says. “We just have a close-to-the-ground view.”
By Marta Gurvich
The Consortium | December 29, 2010 (Originally published August 19, 1998)
Editor’s Note: On Dec. 22, Argentina’s ex-dictator Rafael Videla was sentenced to life in prison for the deaths of 31 prisoners, killed after his 1976 coup. But the crimes of the well-dressed would-be totalitarian were far more extensive than that – and more significant to present-day politics in the Americas.
Like other coup leaders, Videla, now 85, fancied himself a visionary in the use of psychological warfare, including torture and “disappearances” to terrorize leftist dissidents in a global war on behalf of a new-age fascism. These Dirty War tactics included harvesting babies from doomed mothers and then distributing the infants to military officers implicated in the mothers’ deaths.
Though much of Latin America has repudiated such barbarism, Americans, who are gearing up to celebrate the centennial anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s birth in February, might wish to reflect on how their hero-president – hailed by MSNBC’s Chris Matthews “one of the all-time greats” – gave political cover to the crimes of Videla and his cohorts.
In 1998, Consortiumnews.com published the following article by Argentine journalist Marta Gurvich about Videla’s rule. The story begins with an anecdote about the emptiness of Videla’s pretensions of sophistication:
“What is your favorite book,” a journalist asked Gen. Rafael Videla, after he ascended to power in Argentina in 1976.
“Book?” Videla replied.
The journalist was perspiring. He didn’t think it was a hard question to ask someone leading the nation. But suddenly the journalist felt that the question could jeopardize not only his career but his life.
It was embarrassing that the new president could not come up with at least one title of one book. So the journalist tried to help out with suggestions: “The Bible perhaps? Martin Fierro (the most important book in Argentina’s literature)?”
Videla said something about his first-grade reading book, but … he could not remember its title. [From an article by Omar Bravo in Diario Perfil, July 10, 1998]
Former Argentine president Jorge Rafael Videla, the dapper dictator who launched the so-called Dirty War in 1976, was arrested on June 9, 1998, for a particularly bizarre crime of state, one that rips at the heart of human relations.
Videla, known for his English-tailored suits and his ruthless counterinsurgency theories, stands accused of permitting — and concealing — a scheme to harvest infants from pregnant women who were kept alive in military prisons only long enough to give birth.
According to the charges, the babies were taken from the new mothers, sometimes by late-night Caesarean sections, and then distributed to military families or shipped to orphanages. After the babies were pulled away, the mothers were removed to another site for their executions.
Yet, after Videla’s arrest, Argentina was engulfed in a legal debate over whether Videla could be judged a second time for these grotesque kidnappings.
After democracy was restored in Argentina, Videla was among the generals convicted of human rights crimes, including “disappearances,” tortures, murders and kidnappings. In 1985, Videla was sentenced to life imprisonment at the military prison of Magdalena.
But, on Dec. 29, 1990, amid rumblings of another possible military coup, President Carlos Menem pardoned Videla and other convicted generals. Many politicians considered the pardons a pragmatic decision of national reconciliation that sought to shut the door on the dark history of the so-called Dirty War when the military slaughtered from 10,000 to 30,000 Argentineans.
Relatives of the victims, however, continued to uncover evidence that children taken from their mothers’ wombs sometimes were being raised as the adopted children of their mothers’ murderers. For 15 years, a group called Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo demanded the return of these kidnapped children, estimated to number as many as 500.
After years of detective work, the Grandmothers documented the identities of 256 missing babies. Of those, however, only 56 children were ever located and seven of them had died.
Aided by breakthroughs in genetic testing, the Grandmothers succeeded in returning 31 children to their biological families. Thirteen were raised jointly by their adoptive and biological families and the remaining cases are bogged down in court custody battles.
The Baby Harvest
But the baby kidnappings gained a new focus in 1997 with developments in the case of Silvia Quintela, a leftist doctor who attended to the sick in shanty towns around Buenos Aires.
On Jan. 17, 1977, Quintela was abducted off a Buenos Aires street by military authorities because of her political leanings. At the time, Quintela and her agronomist husband Abel Madariaga were expecting their first child.
According to witnesses who later testified before a government truth commission, Quintela was held at a military base called Campo de Mayo, where she gave birth to a baby boy. As in similar cases, the infant then was separated from the mother. What happened to the boy is still not clear, but Quintela reportedly was transferred to a nearby airfield.
There, victims were stripped naked, shackled in groups and dragged aboard military planes. The planes then flew out over the Rio de la Plata or the Atlantic Ocean, where soldiers pushed the victims out of the planes and into the water to drown.
After democracy was restored in 1983, Madariaga, who had fled into exile in Sweden, returned to Argentina and searched for his wife. He learned about her death and the birth of his son.
Madariaga came to suspect that a military doctor, Norberto Atilio Bianco, had kidnapped the boy. Bianco had overseen Caesarean sections performed on captured women, according to witnesses. He then allegedly drove the new mothers to the airport.
In 1987, Madariaga demanded DNA testing of Bianco’s two children, a boy named Pablo and a girl named Carolina, both of whom were suspected children of disappeared women. Madariaga thought Pablo might be his son.
But Bianco and his wife, Susana Wehrli, fled Argentina to Paraguay, where they resettled with the two children. Argentine judge Roberto Marquevich sought the Biancos’ extradition, but Paraguay balked for 10 years.
Finally, faced with demands from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Paraguay relented. Bianco and Wehrli were returned to face kidnapping charges. But the two children — now young adults with small children of their own — refused to return to Argentina or submit to DNA testing.
Though realizing they were adopted, Pablo and Carolina did not want to know about the fate of their real mothers and did not want to jeopardize the middle-class lives they had enjoyed in the Bianco household. [For more details about this case, see “Baby-Snatching: Argentina’s Dirty War Secret.”]
As an offshoot of the Bianco case, Judge Marquevich ordered the arrest of Videla. The judge accused the former dictator of facilitating the snatching of Pablo and Carolina as well as four other children. Marquevich found that Videla was aware of the kidnappings and took part in a cover-up of the crimes. The aging general was placed under house arrest.
In a related case, another judge, Alfredo Bagnasco, began investigating whether the baby-snatching was part of an organized operation and thus a premeditated crime of state. According to a report by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, the Argentine military viewed the kidnappings as part of a larger counterinsurgency strategy.
“The anguish generated in the rest of the surviving family because of the absence of the disappeared would develop, after a few years, into a new generation of subversive or potentially subversive elements, thereby not permitting an effective end to the Dirty War,” the commission said in describing the army’s reasoning for kidnapping the infants of murdered women.
The kidnapping strategy conformed with the “science” of the Argentine counterinsurgency operations. The Dirty War’s clinical anti-communist practitioners refined torture techniques, sponsored cross-border assassinations and collaborated with organized-crime elements.
According to government investigations, the military’s intelligence officers advanced Nazi-like methods of torture by testing the limits of how much pain a human being could endure before dying. The torture methods included experiments with electric shocks, drowning, asphyxiation and sexual perversions, such as forcing mice into a woman’s vagina.
Some of the implicated military officers had trained at the U.S.-run School of the Americas.
Behind this Dirty War and its excesses stood the slight, well-dressed, gentlemanly figure of Gen. Videla. Called “bone” or the “pink panther” because of his slim build, Videla emerged as a leading theorist for international anti-communist strategies in the mid-1970s.
Videla’s tactics were emulated throughout Latin America and were defended by prominent American right-wing politicians, including Ronald Reagan.
Videla rose to power amid Argentina’s political and economic unrest in the early-to-mid 1970s. “As many people as necessary must die in Argentina so that the country will again be secure,” he declared in 1975 in support of a “death squad” known as the Argentine Anti-Communist Alliance.
On March 24, 1976, Videla led the military coup which ousted the ineffective president, Isabel Peron. Though armed leftist groups had been shattered by the time of the coup, the generals still organized a counterinsurgency campaign to eradicate any remnants of what they judged political subversion.
Videla called this “the process of national reorganization,” intended to reestablish order while inculcating a permanent animosity toward leftist thought. “The aim of the Process is the profound transformation of consciousness,” Videla announced.
Along with selective terror, Videla employed sophisticated public relations methods. He was fascinated with techniques for using language to manage popular perceptions of reality.
The general hosted international conferences on P.R. and awarded a $1 million contract to the giant U.S. firm of Burson Marsteller. Following the Burson Marsteller blueprint, the Videla government put special emphasis on cultivating American reporters from elite publications.
“Terrorism is not the only news from Argentina, nor is it the major news,” went the optimistic P.R. message.
Since the jailings and executions of dissidents were rarely acknowledged, Videla felt he could deny government involvement. He often suggested that the missing Argentines were not dead, but had slipped away to live comfortably in other countries.
“I emphatically deny that there are concentration camps in Argentina, or military establishments in which people are held longer than is absolutely necessary in this … fight against subversion,” he told British journalists in 1977.
In a grander context, Videla and the other generals saw their mission as a crusade to defend Western Civilization against international communism. They worked closely with the Asian-based World Anti-Communist League and its Latin American affiliate, the Confederacion Anticomunista Latinoamericana [CAL].
Latin American militaries collaborated on projects such as the cross-border assassinations of political dissidents. Under one project, called Operation Condor, political leaders — centrist and leftist alike — were shot or bombed in Buenos Aires, Rome, Madrid, Santiago and Washington. Operation Condor often employed CIA-trained Cuban exiles as assassins.
In 1980, four years after the coup, the Argentine military exported its terror tactics into neighboring Bolivia. There, Argentine intelligence operatives helped Nazi war criminal Klaus Barbie and major drug lords mount a brutal putsch, known as the Cocaine Coup.
The bloody operation turned Bolivia into the first modern drug state and expanded cocaine smuggling into the United States. [For more details, see Consortiumnews.com’s “Hitler’s Shadow Reaches toward Today,” or Robert Parry’s Secrecy & Privilege.]
Videla’s anything-goes anti-communism struck a responsive chord with the Reagan administration which came to power in 1981.
President Reagan quickly reversed President Jimmy Carter’s condemnation of the Argentine junta’s record on human rights. Reagan’s U.N. Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick even hosted the urbane Argentine generals at an elegant state dinner.
More substantively, Reagan authorized CIA collaboration with the Argentine intelligence service for training and arming the Nicaraguan Contras. The Contras were soon implicated in human rights atrocities and drug smuggling of their own.
But the Contras benefitted from the Reagan administration’s own “perception management” operation which portrayed them as “the moral equivalent of the Founding Fathers.”
In 1982, however, the Argentine military went a step too far. Possibly deluded by its new coziness with Washington, the army invaded the British-controlled Falkland Islands. Given the even-closer Washington-London alliance, the Reagan administration sided with Margaret Thatcher’s government, which crushed the Argentine invaders in a brief war.
The humiliated generals relinquished power in 1983. Then, after democratic elections, the new president Raul Alfonsin created a truth commission to collect evidence about the Dirty War crimes. The grisly details shocked Argentines and the world.
Some Argentine analysts believe that repercussions from that violent era continue to the present, with organized crime rampant and corruption reaching into the highest levels of the government.
President Menem’s sister-in-law, Amira Yoma, reportedly was under investigation in Spain for money-laundering. A reporter investigating mob ties was burned alive. Relatives of a prosecutor examining gold smuggling were tortured by having their faces mutilated. Jewish targets have been bombed. …
Elsewhere, foreign governments whose citizens were victims of the Dirty War also pressed individual cases against Videla and other former military leaders. These countries included Germany, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Denmark and Honduras.
Yet, in Argentina, Menem’s pardon protected Videla and the others from facing any significant punishment for their acts, at least for a time. Menem refused to extradite the former military leaders to other countries. He also dragged his heels on purging the armed forces of thousands of officers implicated in Dirty War offenses.
So the lingering case implicating Videla in harvesting babies from doomed women represented one of the last chances for Argentina to hold the dictator accountable — and to come to grips with the terrible crimes of its recent past.
[In 1998, Videla was found guilty of kidnapping in the case of Silvia Quintela and other “disappeared.” He spent 38 days in prison before being transferred to house arrest due to health concerns. However, after the election of President Nestor Kirchner in 2003, another effort was made to hold the Dirty War leaders accountable, including the recent conviction of Videla.]
By RP Siegel
TriplePundit | December 27, 2010
The German chemical giant Bayer, most widely known for curing headaches, seems to be causing a few lately with their insistence on pushing their controversial genetically modified rice on farmers around the world.
They have a new strain, LL62 that has been approved for commercial use, but only in the US (other strains have been approved in China). This is one area, along with debt and defense spending in which the US leads the world, presumably not because we’re eager to show the world how willing we are to cover vast tracts of farmland with these highly experimental, and biologically unstable new manmade organisms now, a near totally irreversible process, and then find out if they are safe later, but rather because the US is where most former executives of biotech companies now reside on government panels charged with approving such crops. But as we will see in a minute, this trend is starting to move into other countries. It appears that perhaps in this time of high trade deficits, we have found a new, highly profitable export: corruption.
LL62, (Liberty Linked) is a strain of rice that is professed to be resistant to the pesticide glufosinate, which is also made by Bayer. (No big surprise there). The company claims that this type of rice will achieve 10% higher yields than ordinary rice, presumably because of reduced insect damage. Unfortunately, Glufosinate residue has been shown to remain on rice and into the hands and stomachs of consumers–which means that LL62 is making it easier for the planet’s population to be exposed to the pesticide which is classified as toxic for reproduction and liable to cause birth defects. It is expected to be on the market by 2020.
This is Bayer’s second attempt at introducing Liberty Linked rice. Back in 2006, the company conducted field trials of the rice, which somehow found its way into the American food supply despite the fact that it had not been approved for human consumption. This created havoc in the rice market and reportedly cost the industry $1.2 billion. Bayer is still settling claims with individual farmers in compensation for losses they suffered. You can think of it as a rice spill, somewhat akin to what happened in the Gulf of Mexico earlier this year. But apparently it wasn’t enough to dissuade the company from pursuing this dangerous practice any more than the oil industry has been dissuaded from deep sea drilling. Alas, the allure of profit is a powerful one.
Indeed there are 3.4 billion people around the world who eat rice at least once a day. So the idea of increasing yields by ten percent seems like a noble one. Unfortunately this kind of tampering with the gene pool is risky and ill-conceived. Experts, such as Wes Jackson suggest that we would fare far better following nature’s model.
Earlier this year, the company had put a full court press on in Brazil, hoping to get approval for the rice. The company had already established a beach head for GMO crops there, thanks in large part to the fact that the CTNBio (National Technical Commission on Biosecurity) is comprised largely of individuals with close ties to the biotech industry, including: BASF, Bayer, Cargill, Dow, Dupont, Monsanto, Pioneer, Syngenta, and others.
But the effort was beaten back this time, not only because of protests from environmental and consumer groups, but also because of objections from with the agricultural sector after scientists pointed out that the new rice could interbreed with red rice, an invasive weed species which could then result in a chemical resistant variety which would be catastrophic to Brazil’s rice crop which last year reached 11.3 million tons.
Yet despite these manifold concerns, and the fact that technical analyses in the processes of licensing GMOs have lacked scientific rigor and have not followed the principles of caution as outlined in the Protocol of Cartagena regarding Biosecurity, the CTNBio has gone on record saying that, “Brazil cannot let go of transgenic technology” as it is “essential for sustainability and keeps agribusiness and small family farms competitive, and brings in numerous social and economic benefits to the country.”
Bayer was in the news earlier this month when word came out that despite the fact that another one of their pesticides, clothianidin, has been devastating to honey bees; the EPA continues to refuse to regulate it.
The stage continues to be elaborately set. These companies continue to infiltrate agencies at every level of government, either through direct recruiting or paid influence and the highly misinformed American public goes blithely along while the bureaucrats responsible for protecting their health and safety continue to rubber stamp anything the companies think they can make money on, whether they are safe or not.
I’m not sure that the answer is smaller government, as the last election tries to suggest. But I think a government that did what it was supposed to do would be a good place to start.
RP Siegel is co-author of the eco-thriller Vapor Trails.
Like airplanes, we all leave behind a vapor trail. And though we can easily see others’, we rarely see our own.
abstracted from the April 2005 issue of Pure Facts
By adding 3-dimethylbutyl (a chemical the Environmental Protection Agency lists as hazardous) to aspartame, scientists at Monsanto drastically increased the sweetening power of the additive. The new version was named neotame. (The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved it in 2002. It is also approved for use in Australia and New Zealand but has not yet been accepted in Europe.)
In addition to being far sweeter than aspartame, neotame is heat stable. This means that, unlike aspartame, it can be used in baked goods.
Depending on how it is used, neotame is from 7,000 to 13,000 times as sweet as sugar. It is 30 times sweeter than its cousin, aspartame, so only a tiny amount is needed. Since the FDA does not require labels to include ingredients that comprise less than one percent of the product, it’s possible that neotame could be used in foods without having to be listed on the label. It might also be camouflaged under “natural flavors.”
At this time, neotame is not available directly to consumers; instead, it is being used in several hundred different food products, often blended with other synthetic sweeteners.
(Note: Products that contain aspartame are required to include a caution for individuals who cannot tolerate the phenylalanine in it. Some manufacturers hide aspartame in foods, supplements, and medicines, by simply saying “contains phenylalanine.”)
Critics say neotame is even more toxic than aspartame, and call for independent research (not studies funded by the manufacturer) to evaluate its effects. They allege that Monsanto’s studies on humans lasted only one day! They accuse Monsanto of hiring a close business partner to conduct studies on the sweetener. The critics also say that it was discovered the researchers were hiding reaction-causing chemicals in the drinks given to control groups.
The non-profit group, Truth in Labeling, gained access to some of the neotame studies. They write, “At the time of our review of Monsanto’s application, three human studies on the safety of neotame were presented. The studies had few subjects, all of whom were employees of the company. Some of the subjects reported headaches after ingesting neotame, but the researchers concluded that the headaches were not related to neotame ingestion. Not mentioned in the studies was the fact that migraine headache is, by far, the most commonly reported adverse reaction to aspartame in the files of the FDA.”
H.J. Roberts, MD, who has studied the effects of aspartame for many years, writes: “The fundamental issue is that neotame, a synthetic variation of aspartame, requires extensive evaluation before the FDA should accept a superficial opinion about its purported safety based largely on limited short-term data involving potentially flawed protocols that were almost totally funded by corporate contracts.”
We did a search of MedLine to find studies of adverse effects or side effects of Neotame. Only four studies appeared, two of which were not studies, and the other two of which were actually a single study done by NutraSweet company researchers.
This is not a study, but a review of earlier literature. Weihrauch, in 2004, says that “It can be assumed that every citizen of Western countries uses artificial sweeteners, knowingly or not.” He concludes, “Despite some rather unscientific assumptions, there is no evidence that aspartame is carcinogenic.” but also notes that it is too early to know about the newer sweeteners (they are not tested before being sold to you – have you noticed that?) but “Case-control studies showed an elevated relative risk of 1.3 for heavy artificial sweetener use (no specific substances specified) of >1.7 g/day.” Yet, he concludes that while the current mixing of sweeteners will make it difficult to know what any single one is doing to us, “according to the current literature, the possible risk of artificial sweeteners to induce cancer seems to be negligible.”
Translation: If we don’t look, we won’t know anything bad.
Evaluation of certain food additives and contaminants. This is not a study at all, but a report by the World Health Organization, setting the acceptable daily intakes (ADIs) of the various additives including sweeteners.
Finally, we see two studies – actually, they appear to be two articles on one study, printed in the same issue of the journal, Regulatory toxicology and pharmacology. Although they are the same researchers, the authors are listed as from the AAC Consulting Group in the first study, and from Regulatory Affairs, The NutraSweet Company, in the second.
Their results apparently are that the rats don’t like neotame very much, and would not eat it until they reduced the “dosage” drastically. Even so, they did not gain weight properly as they grew. How the doses that they tolerated compare with how much people actually may eat, is not mentioned in the abstract. The rats did not show any gross pathology when examined after being killed. It does not appear that they performed any neurological studies on these rats. Also, if the rats were refusing to eat the neotame, they could have given it to them by gavage (tube feeding), as they do in other studies when they really do want to know if the chemical will have any negative effect.
Where are the studies by unbiased, independent researchers? If they have been done, they do not appear to have been published. If you know of some, feel free to send them to us.
In a second MedLine search of “Neotame” alone, the same articles as above appeared, as well as a couple of reviews of literature apparently not published in MedLine, several articles describing the chemical stability, chemical structure, etc., a review of its discovery and development, and one on its effect on glucose levels in diabetics (unfortunately, there is no abstract of that one and the article is in Russian).
It is hard to escape the nagging feeling that the appropriate studies on safety, neurotoxicity, immunology, development, and safety during pregnancy, are just not there.
By Chris McGreal
The Guardian | December 29, 2010
A brigadier general is conducting a “top to bottom” review of the 5th Stryker brigade after five of its soldiers were committed for trial early next year charged with involvement in the murders of three Afghans and other alleged crimes including mutilating their bodies, and collecting fingers and skulls from corpses as trophies.
Among the issues under investigation is the failure of commanders to intervene when the alleged crimes were apparently widely spoken about among soldiers.
Staff Sergeant Calvin Gibbs, the alleged leader of what prosecutors have characterised as a death squad based in Kandahar province in southern Afghanistan, is accused of planning the alleged murders in which civilians were killed with hand grenades and guns and their deaths made to appear to be legitimate battlefield casualties. Gibbs, 26, has denied three charges of murder and other crimes.
Four other soldiers are charged with involvement in at least one of the three murders over a five-month period this year. They include an army specialist, Adam Winfield, whose lawyer has released a Facebook chat between the soldier and his father, Christopher, that suggests many other soldiers in the brigade approved of the killings.
In the chat, Winfield says he is troubled by one murder by other members of his unit. “Some innocent guy about my age just farming. They made it look like the guy threw a grenade and them and mowed him down … Everyone pretty much knows it was staged. If I say anything it’s my word against everyone. There’s no one in this platoon that agrees this was wrong. They all don’t care.”
Later in the chat, Winfield wrote: “Everyone just wants to kill people at any cost. They don’t care. The Army is full of a bunch of scumbags I realized.”
Winfield’s father contacted the military to warn it about the killings. His son later admitted to firing his gun towards a third Afghan who was allegedly murdered two months later. Winfield later told investigators in videotaped interviews shown at a pre-trial hearing that Gibbs formed the “kill team”.
Another soldier, Jeremy Morlock, who faces a court martial for alleged involvement in all three murders, has also accused Gibbs of organising the killings.
“Gibbs had pure hatred for all Afghanis and constantly referred to them as savages,” said Morlock.
Seven other soldiers are charged with lesser crimes, including drug use, collecting body parts as souvenirs and covering up the killings. Gibbs is alleged to have kept finger bones, leg bones and a tooth from Afghan corpses. Another soldier is said to have collected a human skull.
Some of the soldiers are also accused of taking a photograph posing next to one of the corpses as if it were hunted game. The military has so far declined to offer the pictures in evidence out of concern they would be more generally released and prompt a backlash against US troops in Afghanistan.
Earlier this month, one of the accused soldiers, Staff Sergeant Robert Stevens, reached a plea bargain with prosecutors in which he was convicted of aggravated assault over two killings and sentenced to nine months in prison after agreeing to testify against 10 other members of his unit. He also pleaded guilty to lying about these crimes and to dereliction of duty.
Stevens had faced charges that carried up to 19 years in prison.
By Kevin Carson
Center for a Stateless Society | December 17 2010
Mort Zuckerman, editor of U.S. News and World Report and a fixture on the Sunday talking head shows, is the kind of beltway liberal skewered by Matt Taibbi (“Matt Bai’s Post-Partisanship,” Rolling Stone, Dec. 5): “one of those guys … who poses as a wonky, Democrat-leaning ‘centrist’ pundit and then makes a career out of drubbing ‘unrealistic’ liberals and progressives with cartoonish Jane Fonda and Hugo Chavez caricatures.” The modus operandi is to write editorials “gentling chiding” the unrealistic Left “for failing to grasp the obvious wisdom of the WTO or whatever Bob Rubin/Pete Peterson Foundation deficit-reduction horse**** the Democratic Party chiefs happen to be pimping at the time.”
Well, Zuckerman’s gone one better this time. In seeking a context to frame the Wikileaks drama, he’s gone back to the Red Scare (“WikiLeaks, Cyber War Threaten Our Way of Life,” Dec. 10). And he’s come down squarely on the side of the American Legion, A. Mitchell Palmer, Loyalty and One Hundred Percent Americanism.
As evidence of anarchists’ “long history in America of acting to create and at times threaten a violent overthrow of civil society,” Zuckerman cites the assination of McKinley, and goes on mention the attempted assassination of Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer in 1919.
The average product of America’s publik skools might not recognize the name A. Mitchell Palmer, or notice all the background material that Zuckerman omitted. That same Palmer ordered the mass arrests of thousands of labor activists, Wobblies, socialists, newspaper editors, and anyone else who had anything the least bit negative to say about America’s participation in World War I. Palmer’s reign of terror was the largest example of mass political imprisonment in American history.
It’s especially odd, in this context, to read Zuckerman’s reassurance that “hacktivists can protest on the Internet, on billboards, on TV and radio, on T-shirts, and in the newspapers; they can march, lie down in the street, tattoo their foreheads, wave banners, circulate petitions…” Most of the arrests carried out under the almost-martyred Palmer were for just such activities, under the terms of the Espionage Act — the same piece of legislation (surprise!) that Joe Lieberman wants to dust off for use against Wikileaks.
Zuckerman dismisses most of the leaked cables as no more than gossipy trivia about Putin’s personality, and suggests Assange’s supporters care nothing about Wikileaks’ effect on the ability of government officials to promote “peace and security”; they prefer to “retreat into bromides” about “transparency.”
But it’s Zuckerman who retreats into bromides. He neglects the large number leaked cables demonstrating that the U.S. government has been actively doing evil. For decades the United States has supported military coups and death squads all over the world, and done so under cover of promoting “peace and security.” Far from being a bromide, transparency is necessary because, if we don’t know exactly what governments are doing, they will do evil while presenting themselves to the public as angels of light.
Despite his historical anarchist-baiting and his characterization of Assange’s philosophy as “anarchic,” Zuckerman displays absolutely no acquaintance with any actual anarchist thought. He throws around some old chestnuts about “mistaking liberty for license,” seeking “chaos,” and the like. But it’s safe to say he’s never encountered anyone making a reasoned argument for a society organized on the basis of voluntary association. That’s a shame.
A real anarchist might challenge Zuckerman’s tacit equation of Wall Street and the Fortune 500 to “civil society,” and his bland assumption that a managerialist society organized around large corporations and a corporate state (Taibbi’s WTO and Bob Rubin equine scatology) is our self-evidently natural “way of life.” A real anarchist might point out that, in actual history, states — behind all their goo-goo rhetoric — have mainly served the interests of the rich and powerful at the expense of everyone else.
A real anarchist might argue that, for every bomb allegedly thrown by an anarchist, a thousand have been thrown by the United States government — and that most of those bombs have incinerated ordinary working people to make the world safe for a corporate world order. A real anarchist might state a willingness to put the U.S. national security state up against Assange & Co., in terms of “nihilistic contempt for the rights of others,” any day of the week.
A real anarchist might point out that what all the high school civics rhetoric of these Sane, Responsible, Serious People, these stuffed suits a half-inch to the right and a half-inch to the left of center, really translates into is a world where the RIAA and MPAA write U.S. copyright law, ADM and Cargill write U.S. agricultural policy, and the oil industry writes energy policy.
But that might make Chris Matthews or David Gergen clutch their pearls and gasp about “extremism” and “incivility,” mightn’t it?
C4SS Research Associate Kevin Carson is a contemporary mutualist author and individualist anarchist whose written work includes Studies in Mutualist Political Economy, Organization Theory: An Individualist Anarchist Perspective, and The Homebrew Industrial Revolution: A Low-Overhead Manifesto, all of which are freely available online. Carson has also written for such print publications as The Freeman: Ideas on Liberty and a variety of internet-based journals and blogs, including Just Things, The Art of the Possible, the P2P Foundation and his own Mutualist Blog.
November 15, 2010
Edwin Black is the author of IBM and the Holocaust. This article is drawn from his just released book, The Farhud, Roots of the Arab-Nazi Alliance During the Holocaust (Dialog 2010).
The year was 1929. Jewish Palestine was still being settled by torrents of eastern European refugees. The League of Nations Mandate for Palestine included the provision for a Jewish Homeland. The Balfour Declaration, widely endorsed by many nations, was a matter of international law. But the Arabs in Palestine refused to co-exist with Jews in any way except as second-class dhimmis.
Islam had been at war with the Jewish people since its defining inception in 627 when Mohammad exterminated the Jews of Mecca and launched the Islamic Conquest that swept north and subsumed Syria-Palestina. For centuries, Jews and Christians in Arab lands were allowed to exist as dhimmis, second-class citizens with limited religious rights. These restrictions were enforced by the Turks who, until World War I, ruled the geographically undetermined region known as Palestine, which included Jerusalem.
When the Ottoman Empire fell, after World War I ended in 1918, the British were obligated by the Mandate to maintain the Turkish status quo at the Wailing Wall.
That status quo, according to numerous decrees under Sharia, maintained that Jews could pray at the Wailing Wall—the last remnant of the Temple—only quietly and never sit, even in the heat. Nor were Jews allowed to separate men from women during prayer. The Jews revered the Wailing Wall as their holiest accessible place and a direct connection to God. But under Turkish and Arab tradition, the Wailing Wall was not the Jews’ holy site. Rather, it was revered by Muslims as al-Buraq, the place where Mohammad tethered his winged steed during his miraculous ascent to heaven. During that miraculous journey, according to Islamic tradition, Mohammad flew through the air on his magnificent horse to the furthest mosque. The furthest mosque was in Jerusalem, hence the al-Aqsa, meaning “the furthest.” Therefore, the Wailing Wall became pre-eminently a Muslim holy place, only available for Jewish visitation with permission and under strict guidelines that would not connote independent worship or ownership of the Wall.
In 1928, on Yom Kippur, Jews decided to bring benches and chairs to sit while they prayed, and they also brought a mechitza, in this case, a flimsy portable partition to separate men from women. This provoked outrage among Arabs, and the British even tried to pull chairs out from under people to force them to stand. The offense catapulted al-Hajj Muhammad Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, to sudden international Islamic importance as Muslims everywhere—from India to London—objected to Jews sitting. Husseini even convened an emergency international conference of Muslims in Jerusalem to stop Jews from sitting at the Wall to pray.
The Mufti and his machinery also began a non-stop protest movement against the perceived Jewish encroachment on the Wall. As the chief religious authority, it was Husseini who directed that the muezzin, the man who calls Muslims to prayer from the minaret, position himself within earshot of the Wailing Wall pavement, and then dial the volume up to rile Jews during prayer and prove Islamic dominance. At the same time, it was Husseini who directed the revival of the cacophonous dhikr ceremony, complete with repetitive shouts of Allahu Akbar, as well as loud gongs and cymbals, once again, disrupting Jewish prayers with strategic noise. The Mufti also was the one who permitted mules to be herded through the Jewish prayer area, dropping dung and creating the feel and smell of what one Jerusalem newspaper termed “a latrine.”
On August 15 1929, when Jews again marked the holiday Tisha B’av by sitting, and also chanted “the Wall is ours,” the Arabs began yet another in a series of bloody massacres. The massacres in several cities culminated in unspeakable atrocities at Hebron.
It began in Jerusalem. “Itbach Al Yahood! Itbach Al Yahood!” Slaughter the Jews. Slaughter the Jews. With knives and clubs, the mob attacked every Jew in sight, burned Torah scrolls, and yanked supplication notes to God from the cracks in the Wall and set them aflame.
Attacks spread throughout the land over the following days. Jews were stabbed, shot, beaten down with rocks, maimed, and killed in various Jewish towns and suburbs. The chaos continued for days. With thousands of dagger- and club-wielding Arabs swarming throughout the city hunting Jews, wire services transmitted headlines such as “Thousands of Peasants Invaded Jerusalem and Raided all Parts of the City.”
Martial law was declared. Armored cars were brought in from Baghdad. British airplanes swept in to machine-gun Arab marauders. Violence continued to spread throughout Palestine. Jews fought back and retaliated with bricks and bars and whatever they could find. Then, on August 23 and 24, 1929, Hebron became a bloody nightmare.
House to house, Arab mobs went, bursting into every room looking for hiding Jews. Religious books and scrolls were burned or torn to shreds. The defenseless Jews were variously beheaded, castrated, their breasts and fingers sliced off, and in some cases their eyes plucked from their sockets. Infant or adult, man or woman—it mattered not. The carnage went on for hours, with the Arab policemen standing down—or joining in. Blood ran in streamlets down the narrow stone staircases outside the buildings. House to house, room by room, the savagery was repeated.
One young boy, Yosef Lazarovski, later wrote of the horror: “I remember a brown-skinned Arab with a large mustache breaking through the door. He had a large knife and an axe that he swung through the doorjambs until he broke through. [He was] full of fury, screaming, ‘Allah Akbar!’ and ‘Itbach al Yahood!’ … My grandfather tried to hold my hand, then [he tried] to push me aside [and hide me], screaming, Shema Yisrael [the most solemn Jewish prayer] … and then I remember another Arab … with an axe that he brought down on my grandfather’s neck.”
Not a single victim was simply killed. Each was mutilated and tortured in accordance with their identities, the specific information provided by local Arabs. The Jewish man who lent money to Arabs was sliced open and the IOUs burned in his body. The Jewish baker’s head was tied to the stove and then baked. A Jewish scholar who had studied Koranic philosophy for years was seized, his cranium cut open, and his brain extracted. Another man was nailed to a door. Some 67 Jews were brutally murdered.
London dispatched special investigative commissions which determined that under the Sharia status quo, Jews were not permitted to sit. Jews were even blamed for provoking the massacres by deliberately sitting.
The Mufti of Jerusalem used the Wall controversy to continue his campaign against the British and the Jews. As part of that war, the Mufti led a broadly accepted, international and popularly accepted Arab and Islamic alliance with Nazi Germany. Eventually, when the British tried to arrest him, he fled to Iraq. There, the Mufti and Nazi agents helped inspire the 1941 Farhud, a two-day spree of killing, looting and raping the Jews of Baghdad.
Once the British finally helped restore order, the Mufti fled again, this time to Germany, where he was taken under the personal auspices of Adolf Hitler and Heinrich Himmler. The Mufti formed a 8,000-man plus Muslim Waffen-SS division, which partnered with the bloodthirsty Ustasha in Croatia to commit the most heinous crimes in the hell that was the Holocaust. The Ustasha wore Jewish eyeballs on necklaces.
The alliance with the Nazis spanned every aspect of the war, from intelligence offices in Paris to plans, to parachute units, to artillery battalions, to a plan exterminate all Jews in Palestine. This alliance was more than one man, the Mufti of Jerusalem—it was a movement of popular international Islamic fervor that stretched across the Middle East and Europe.
After the fall of Hitler, the legacy of hate continued in the post-War expulsions of a million Jews from Arab lands. Periodically, the fervor that ignited the massacres of 1929 surfaces even today. Intifadas arise, riots erupt, and the Arab rallying call, spoken and collectively remembered, continues to be in Jerusalem—where Jews should not be permitted to sit at the Wailing Wall when they pray.