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Defamation Soceity (6)
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Gadgets and Gizmos (1)
Computer Security (3)
|Tools for Living (1)
Global Politics (11)
Social Activism (6)
War in Colombia (3)
Information War (5)
Web Censorship (2)
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Behind the Web (8)
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Ecopartners is a development project, run by John Katz from Cornell University, doing work in the village of El Limon in the Dominican Republic. We visted El Limon last January and were amazed by what we saw. With help from Ecopartners, the people of Limon are trying organic agriculture, have constructed a micro hydroelectric power system for the village, and now have two computers which will have internet access when cellular telephone service comes to the area.
Connected with Covert Action Quarterly, MediaFilter fights the forces of mind control run by the CIA, FBI and public relations industry. Inside you'll find articles on satellite surveilance, assassination training at the School of the Americas and the war the New York city police is fighting against squatters.
The Zapatista Front
In January 1994 the Zapatista movement, led by Subcommandante Macros, seized several towns in Chiapas and began a long struggle for political change. The Zapatistas reinvigorated the Left worldwide by forming an indigineous people's movement that poses a credible threat to neoliberalism by blending the strengths of socialism, anarchism and feminism. This has made the Zapatistas a target for extermination by the Mexican government. Fortunately, the Zapatisitas have a weapon that Che Guevera never had, a web site. The Zapatista Front is a comprehensive set of documents from the Zapatistas themselves which tells their side of the story -- enabling the rest of us to speak out in their defense.
Ban Landmines Now!
Antipersonnel mines kill or injure someone every 22 minutes. An international movement to ban landmines is making progress but needs our support. The United States is the last barrier, since it refuses to sign the treaty banning mines. Activst Tim Grant put together Ban Landmines Now! with photographs he took in Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Angola and Mozambique. Although heavy in gimmicks, Ban Landmines Now! explains the threat mines pose, gives news about the movement, and exposes the companies that still make mines, such as Lockheed and GE.
Press Agency Ozgurluk
Press Agency Ozgurluk, hosted in the Netherlands, spreads the word about human rights abuses in Turkey. Socialists, trade unionists, and Kurdish nationalists "disappear" and are murdered by state- supported "Guerilla" groups. Here you can read news stories from the banned newspaper Kurtulus, articles from other organizations like Amnesty International, and newspaper stories in a variety of languages. Even while big buisness consolidates the internet, the internet still has revolutionary power that reaches beyond national censorship.
The island nation of East Timor was invaded by Indonesia in 1975, nine days after winning indepdence from Portugal. Because the news media in the US suppressed the story, the US military was able to provide material assistance in the genocide of over 250,000 Timorese without public outcry. Facing murderous repression, the Timorese have continued to resist the occupation. Last year, to stand up for the sovereignity of East Timor, an Irish ISP established a top level domain for the nation. The government of Indonesia first protested to the authorities and then, last month, only days after the first indications that Indonesia might end the occupation, attacked their domain server electronically from three continents, shutting it down. East Timor's domain is back up, and the struggle continues.
In wartime, to the authorities, free speech as at best a luxury, more likely a pestulence to be eradicated. Radio B92, of Belgrade, was shut down a few days after bombing began. Long critical of the Yugoslavian government and its genocide, Radio B92 opposes NATO's bombing since, so far, the bombing has intensified Serbian attacks on Kosovo's Albanian population and furthered Milosevic's plan to force them to evacuate.
CNN, television networks and the newspapers immerse us in a simulated war directed out of the Pentagon. It's counterpart in Belgrade, of course, puts strict controls on communication in Yugoslavia to eliminate internal dissent. Since NATO, for the first time, is at war with a internet-connected nation, the rest of us can tune in. Borba Daily is the English language organ of the current Yugoslavian government, priding itself in surviving throughout the Nazi occupation. Today, Borba Daily reads like everybody's war propaganda. Never finding anything creative to say, it describes NATO forces as baby killers, decries the destruction of ancient churches, and gloats over the capture of US pilots while managing to say nothing about the fate of Albanians in Kosovo other than to describe their guerilla forces as "criminals."
People in the states have heard a lot about Kosovo lately, but they haven't heard much about the struggle of Kurds in nearby Turkey, where over 30,000 people have been killed in a guerilla war lasting 14 years. The reason is, as was the case for East Timor, the US has aided the Turks to suppress the movement. Recently the Turks have aggressively moved to crush the movement, causing Kurds to demonstrate at embassies throughout Europe -- making headlines on the continent, but ignored by the US media. (The US, meanwhile, is throwing it's support behind Kurds in Iraq who are opposed to both Saddam Hussein and the Turkish movement.)
Until last week, MED-TV, broadcasting from the UK,
was the only Kurdish language TV channel in the world, a
voice uniting Kurds throughout Europe and the Middle East. Thanks to its inflammatory rhetoric and
complaints by the Turks MED-TV has been suspended for three weeks. Fortunately,
they've still got a web site where you can read about the culture and the struggle of the Kurds, the
largest ethnic group without a nation.
Northern Ireland remains colonized after centuries of British occupation. The nationalist movement Sein Fein, and its military arm, the Irish Republican Army, fights a desperate war of psychological attrition aganst a paranoid national security state. The British government maintains sufficient control over newspapers, the BBC and independent television and radio, forbidding the expression of opinions favorable to the IRA. At least they can't stop Sein Fein from having a web site.
As civil war intensifies in Columbia, the US is preparing to intervene against leftist guerillas in the name of the war on the drugs. If the conflict escalates, America could find itself in another Vietnam. Occidental Petroleum, with assistance from the Columbian army, is stealing land from the U'wa tribe in order to prospect for oil. Activists are putting pressure on major investors such as Al Gore and Fidelity Investments. Read more and get involved with Rainforest Action Network's U'wa Campaign.