Posts Tagged ‘Racism’

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Daily International News 02.24.11

February 24, 2011

Daily International News
February 24, 2011

Jasmine Revolution
Middle East Protests: A Country-by-Country Look
[NYT]

Libya
Obama Vows to Put Pressure on Qaddafi, Sends Clinton for Talks
[Bloomberg]
Qaddafi Massing Forces in Tripoli as Rebellion Spreads
[NYT]
4,500 Chinese escape Libya by sea; Americans stuck
[AP]
Arabian Peninsula
Yemen to ‘protect protesters’
[Al Jazeera]
Iraqis rally through social media in “day of rage”
[Reuters]
Bahrain: no arrest planned for opposition leader
[AP]
Lebanon blocks Bahraini activist from flying home
[Reuters]
Egypt
Former Egyptian minister, state TV boss arrested
[AP]
Egypt’s Suleiman survived assassination bid
[Reuters]

Northeast Asia
Charities warn of food shortages in North Korea
[BBC]

Governors to Meet ‘Rising Star’ Zhou as U.S.-China Ties Deepen
[Bloomberg]
China plans 45 new airports as travel booms
[AP]
Shanghai announces ‘one-dog policy’
[BBC]

Southeast Asia/Pacific
Quake death toll now 98, with 200 more missing: PM
[SMH]
Indonesian court jails Islamist preacher for spurring violence
[Reuters]

South/Central Asia
Pakistan’s intelligence ready to split with CIA
[AP]

Pakistani officials: US missiles kill 6 in NW
[AP]
The United States Talks to the Taliban
[CFR]

Afghan suicide car bombing injures dozens
[BBC]
India Maoists set new conditions for magistrate release
[BBC]

Middle East
Iranian warships arrive in Syria, witness says
[AP]
Suicide bomber in western Iraq kills 8
[AP]
Netanyahu: Israel will not suffer the bombardment of its citizens
[Haaretz]

Africa
Yemen: Somali refugees drown after boat capsizes
[BBC]
Somalia: Heavy Fighting Breaks Out in New Mogadishu Areas
[All Africa]
Zimbabwe holds 46 for attending lecture on Egypt unrest
[BBC]
Ivory Coast fighting threatens 6-year ceasefire
[AP]

Europe
Russia to buy 1000 helicopters by 2020
[Ria Novosti]
Julian Assange to be extradited to Sweden
[Guardian]

Americas
U.S. says Cuba sets trial date for jailed contractor
[Reuters]
Exclusive: Obama to offer infrastructure finance for Brazil
[Reuters]
Mexico arrests suspect in US agent Jaime Zapata killing
[BBC]

Domestic
Saudi Arabian citizen attending West Texas college charged in suspected bombing plot
[Dallas News]

Ex-Asahi Reporter Somnez Authors WaPo Blog 2chambers!
[WaPo]
In Shift, U.S. Says Marriage Act Blocks Gay Rights
[NYT] and Gay marriage policy change: Questions and answers [AP]
Wisconsin assembly agrees to union bill vote, as troopers seek Democratic senators
[WaPo]
U.S. Government Shutdown Looms as Lawmakers Deadlock Over Budget
[Bloomberg]
Huckabee, ‘Seriously’ Weighing Presidential Run, Bides His Time
[Bloomberg]
Another Runaway General: Army Deploys Psy-Ops on U.S. Senators
[Rolling Stone]
Pirates could face trial in US over American deaths
[BBC]
Toyota recalls 2.2 mln vehicles over pedal issues
[Reuters]
Space shuttle Discovery fueled for its last flight
[Reuters]
Honolulu asking for apology from Rush Limbaugh on racist China remarks
[AP]

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Daily International News 11.08.10

November 8, 2010

Daily International News
November 8, 2010

POTUS Asia Trip
Obama’s almost empty promise to India
[FP]
Obama supports adding India as a permanent member of U.N. Security Council
[WaPo]
Obama, Singh Pledge Deeper Economic Ties, Differ on Pakistan
[Bloomberg]
Obama skips Peace Prize winners’ meeting in Japan
[AP]
Obama’s China Ambush
[Daily Beast]

Northeast Asia
Clinton back on US soil after marathon Asia tour
[AP]
China/Taiwan
US drops call for trade surplus target amid dollar spat with China
[BBC]
UK government and business in push for China trade
[BBC]
Chinese artist Ai Weiwei in UK rights plea
[BBC]
Samuelson Op-ed: As G-20 summit nears, China is unlikely to budge on currency
[WaPo]
China maintains pressure over QE
[FT]
Taiwan judges on corruption charges
[BBC]
Koreas
North Korea’s premier travels to Chinese port city of Dalian: sources
[Yonhap]
N. Korea confirms death of sailor in last year’s naval gunfight with S. Korea
[Yonhap]
SKorean police arrest 4 people over G-20 protests
[AP]

Southeast Asia/Pacific
Burma
What’s Next for Burma Opposition After Elections?
[Time]
Myanmar army-backed parties set to sweep rare poll
[Reuters]
10,000 refugees flee Myanmar post-vote fighting
[AP]
Burmese election monitored by North Korean diplomats
[FP]
Indonesia
Many flee Indonesia volcano amid fears of eruption
[AP]
Australia
U.S. to Increase Asia Military Presence, Australia Defense Ties
[Bloomberg]
Qantas makes more checks over A380 engine ‘anomalies’
[BBC]

South/Central Asia
Taliban Seek to Sway U.S. Congress With ‘Open Letter’
[WSJ]

Middle East
Iraq Leaders Meet in Erbil in Bid to Break Eight-Month Deadlock
[Bloomberg]
Israel moves ahead with new east Jerusalem housing
[AP]
Netanyahu Asks Biden to Press Iran on Nuclear Program
[Bloomberg]
Radical Yemeni cleric calls for killing Americans
[AP]
White House considers Yemen drone strikes, officials say
[LAT]

Africa
Nigerian militants seize workers from oil rig
[BBC]
Moroccan police dismantle W.Sahara camp
[AFP]

Europe
EU visits Dublin as worries mount
[BBC]
Italian Leader Urged to Resign by Former Ally
[NYT]
Second Russian reporter attacked
[BBC]
Cameron hails ‘revolutionary’ Whitehall data website
[BBC]
BNP constitution battle returns to court
[BBC]
Former UK MP Woolas makes fresh effort to overturn ban from politics
[BBC]
UK Catholics say 5 Anglican bishops converting
[AP]
Hostages taken at BMW offices in France – police
[BBC]

Americas
Cuban dissident backs off hunger strike threat
[AP]
Cholera may have reached Haitian capital, says doctor
[BBC]
20 killed over weekend in Mexican border city
[AP]

Domestic
Republicans May Increase U.S. House Lead in Undecided Races
[Bloomberg]
Obama opens door for talks with GOP on tax-cut extension
[WaPo]
Are hopes dimming on repeal of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’?
[WaPo]
MSNBC ends suspension of host Keith Olbermann
[WaPo]
Cheney angered by Bush decision on Scooter Libby pardon
[BBC]
Chile miner Edison Pena completes New York City Marathon
[BBC]

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Times of London: BNP still racist, membership list closed

March 12, 2010
Times Online Logo 222 x 25

From Times Online
March 12, 2010

Revised BNP membership rules ‘still racist’

A BNP badge

Nico Hines

The British National Party faced a serious set back in its bid for legitimacy today when a judge ruled that its new membership rules were still likely to discriminate against non-white people.

The far-right party will be forced to close its membership list until it complies with race discrimination legislation.

BNP officials voted to abolish its whites-only policy at a heated meeting last month after the threat of a possible court injunction from the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).

But today at Central London County Court, Judge Paul Collins ruled that the party was still likely to discriminate on racial grounds.

“I hold that the BNP are likely to commit unlawful acts of discrimination within section 1b Race Relations Act 1976 in the terms on which they are prepared to admit persons to membership under the 12th addition of their constitution,” he said. “The membership list will have to be closed.”

Nick Griffin, the party leader, was confronted by a small group of protesters outside the court. They chanted “Nazi scum” as he entered the building.

Speaking before the ruling, Mr Griffin said: “The constitution was always legal.”

Last month, the group scrapped its whites only policy following the threat of a possible court injunction from the EHRC.

The BNP said it had a “waiting list” of black and Asian people. Millionaire Asian businessman Mo Chaudry said he would apply to join the party to “fight them from the inside”.

But he was told his application would be blocked. Speaking earlier, Mr Chaudry, 49, from Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, said: “I’m hoping the court will take a robust approach and question the real intent of the change in the constitution.

“They have no real intention of allowing people like me into the fold. It is just a camouflage to appease the system.”

Pakistan-born Mr Chaudry, who is worth £60 million, runs a string of businesses around Stoke-on-Trent, which has eight BNP members on the city council.

The decision to change the BNP constitution came after the far-right party held an extraordinary general meeting in Essex on February 14.

A reporter for The Times, Dominic Kennedy, was violently ejected from the meeting despite having been invited to attend.

Following the meeting, Mr Griffin said he soon expected to welcome the party’s first non-white member, Sikh Rajinder Singh.

Lawyers from the EHRC were considering the precise wording of the new rules to decide whether they believed the constitution was still discriminatory.

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Labour’s ‘Victory’ over Racism: A Premature Pat on the Back?

January 14, 2010

Today, in an unusually proud statement by Communities Secretary John Denham, Labour proclaimed its near victory over racism, making the point that the United Kingdom not enjoys the most culturally-aware and accepting population ever seen on the island. The statement, coupled with the release of a report entitled “Tackling race inequality: A statement on race” was intended to not only highlight the multitude of efforts by Labour MPs over the years to recognised these problems” and “legislate against racism” but also as a way to erode away the racist platform upon which UK’s nationalist parties stand, particularly the BNP.

However, this pat on the back might be a little premature. Although the UK is more exposed on a wider-scale to some Caribbean, African, and South Asian cultures, incidents of ethnic violence grew in the 1990s – between 1994 and 1998 there were around 5000 reported racist incidents in the Metropolitan police area. Compare that to over 23,000 between 1999 and 2000 (Institute of Race Relations). Additionally, racist terms continue to be employed by youth as well as adults in the cities, to refer to those of immigrant backgrounds especially South Asian and East Asian descent. Take into account as well that less than 2% of the population in London is of East Asian descent (UK ethnicity cards denote either ‘Chinese’ or ‘other’ for East Asians) and NOT a new immigrant, which means exposure to East Asian cultures and peoples is extremely low.

Mr. Denham was making the case that in the UK today, class is the first impediment to education, job acquisition or housing, not race. The steps that Labour have encouraged to bring the UK system to this place are good steps, but they are only preliminary. Additionally, attitudes towards different cultures in the cities centers are in stark contrast to those in the countryside (as is true of most countries). More needs to be done and the small steps over the past few years cannot create a sense of complacency in the issue. But if Labour is going to the lengths it is in to push the publication of this new paper to the detriment of the BNP, it seems action is on the minds of the government, and hopefully it stays there.

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The BNP: If you can’t change their minds, change their constitution

October 16, 2009

Surprisingly absent from the major non-British news outlets yesterday and today has been the revelatory news that the UK Equality and Human Rights Commission has moved to force the British National Party to revamp their constitution to allow non-white, non-Anglican membership.

For those Americans not familiarized with this small, yet frighteningly burgeoning movement, a few minutes on their website should tell you all that you need to know. Staunchly anti-immigration, fiercely and dogmatically  “moral”, and with the innate ability to distort and deflect the causes of all domestic problems to “foreign scoundrels” –  including welfare abuse, environmental damage, and war – the BNP has supported such policies as excluding Turkey from the European Union due to the threat of British “Islamification.”

But the real reason the world should sit up and keep an eye on the BNP are its two new members of the EU parliament – two men whose sheer presence, on the continent-wide governing body which they morally abhore, is a contradiction in terms. This newfound celebrity has caused the Equality and Human Rights Commission to review the BNP outdated constitution, one which still states that “membership of the BNP is strictly defined within the terms of, and our members also self define themselves within, the legal ambit of a defined ‘racial group’ this being ‘Indigenous Caucasian’ and defined ‘ethnic groups’ emanating from that Race as specified in law in the House of Lords case of
Mandla V Dowell Lee (1983) 1 ALL ER 1062, HL.”

The BNP’s agreement to change membership requirements to include all regardless of race, gender, and religion will be monitored by the EHRC over the coming months. The BNP eastern regional spokesman, Chris Roberts, said this of the ruling, “I just believe its another obstacle thrown into our way by the Lib-Lab-Con elite that now we are taking votes from them they are trying to put us out of business.” In a statement released yesterday, the party went onto state that the EHRC’s actions were “highly malicious and clearly politically motivated.”

Individual members of the party even went out of their way to show their “support” of the changes, giving ethnic minorities a little taste of how it would be to apply for membership. On one anti-BNP website called “Nothing British,” BNP activists have already posted comments calling the EHRC “Nazis.”

Who says the BNP spouts racist sentiment?

Who says the BNP spouts racist sentiment?

Pundits in the UK and around the world have taken this opportunity to air their complaints with the BNP’s many inflammatory statements and policies – and also to question the true ability of the EHRC’s ruling to affect any real change within the party.  George Pitcher, Religion Editor of Telegraph Media, commentated that “the BNP will still have its racist policies, even with smiling Sikhs, Muslims and Rastafarians in its membership” and “the EHRC hasn’t thought this through.”

Although I can agree with Pitcher on the fact that the ENRC’s plan might be unrealistic, Pitcher’s flouting of its efficacy in the face of BNP racist propaganda is inappropriate. I doubt, in the first place, that “smiling Sikhs, Muslims and Rastafarians” will be lining up to join the BNP. What American non-Caucasian would apply for KKK membership simply because the charter is changed to tolerate their mere presence? Also, in principle the EHRC must and should address issues like racist and xenophobic language in political party membership charters. It’s the Commission’s job. Although it probably won’t change the composition of the Party in the short or long-term, the verbal thrashing this ruling gives to the deleterious effects of home-grown, domestic facism is one that should be praised.

Perhaps the bottom-line truly is, I will stand behind an organization that champions a “fairer Britain” by “providing advice and guidance, working to implement an effective legislative framework and raising awareness of your rights” against any whose leader proudly states, “We are 100 per cent racist, yes.”

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POST: In Praise of Mr. Olbermann

August 11, 2009

Last night’s well-thought out, highly personalized, and not to mention passionate Special Comment on Countdown with Keith Olbermann should be touted. And thank god, it has been…by some. I want to add my voice to those that approval of his capacity to not only put into words all that I could was so eloquently feeling, but he did so with a poetic aptitude that certainly met with the approbation of this lowly blogger.

He first started out with a studied attack on Sarah Palin, stating the (to me, all too obviousness) that she is “a clear and present danger to the safety and security of this nation.” As for the possibility of her return to politics, this Viscount of Volubility said that her assertion that ‘death panels’ would determine your and your families ‘worth’ ” should debar you, for all time, from any position of responsibility or trust in the governance of this nation or any of its states or municipalities.” He warned Palin and others favorable to fear mongering to be wary of their actions, citing a story I hadn’t heard of of a AstroTurfer bringing a gun to a town hall.  He finished his Palin ministration with a much needed, “God forgive you, Ms. Palin.”

He then went on to eulogize the death of rational American political thinking, citing such veteran irrationals as Glenn Beck (all around lunatic and poison fetishist), Lou Dobbs (birthers supporter), Senator John Corynyn (R-Texas) (well-known now for his assertion that the WH is trying to compile personal contact information under the guise of soliciting health care opinions), and the infamous birthers.

To finish, he cited this from President Lincoln’s first inaugural address:
We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection.  The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone, all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”

It saddens me that in 2009, frustrated media men have been forced to quote the words of a man battling the ravages of the Civil War, to combat the hatred spurned bu AstroTurfers, birthers, and other all around racists. Sure, it’s not as though racial inequalities and racism in general would disappear (or even lessen) with the inauguration of President Obama, but the flare-ups of racism disguised as health care debate, or, so ludicrously, as ‘real’ interest in the state of American politics, more so than making me angry, simply make me tired.

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POST: Bloggers Go Too Far in Joker “Race” Characterization

August 6, 2009
    Images of Obama invoking the Joker have begun to pop up around LA. Come on, haven't we seen this before...recently?

Images of Obama invoking the Joker have begun to pop up around LA. Come on, haven't we seen this before...recently?

In an unsurprising move by hardliners against President Obama’s health care plan, posters have begun popping up around Los Angeles, depicting a creepy image of the President invoking the Heath Ledger-esque Joker from the Dark Knight. As a unwavering supporter of the President’s health care plan, this new-ish development is not a shock to me – after the lengths we have seen people go to, busing themselves around to Town Hall meetings purely for the purpose of disrupting local debates, the time it would take someone to Photoshop some crude image over Obama’s face and paste it down by Venice would actually be a shorter means to their end.  And, come on, this is LA we’re talking about. Having been born and raised there, although there is a large contingency of liberals, conservatives come in all shapes and sizes too – even ones with negligible artistic abilities and a computer.

Much More Menacing

Much More Menacing

In fact, you could even say I am slightly relieved that the Obama image, see above, is less scary and remarkably less creepy as the Bush image sent into Vanity Fair in July of last year (see left).  The Bush image, by artist and author Drew Friedman, is far scarier, far more overt in terms of it psychotic characteristics (and in the view of the Pwn3r, far more accurate…).

But, what I have the most beef with is the way people blow these kinds of things out of proportion. Yes, it is another example of a highly misinformed person mis-characterizing and misunderstanding both the President and the health care plan being proposed, in general. But, come on, it is hardly as detrimental as the Town Hall disruptors and it is certainly not racist.

Washington Post Staff Writer Philip Kennicott’s Op-Ed today in Arts & Living takes it too far.  When one looks at the image of Obama, I think what would be called to mind would be Heath Ledgers amazing, but disturbing, portrayal of the Joker in the Dark Knight.  The word “socialism” placed below is an obvious caveat on the part of the “artist,” albiet misguided. But, take a hard look at it, and I think the average man on the street will not make the connection between this image and “the inner city, a source of political instability in the 1960s and ’70s, and a lingering bogeyman in political consciousness despite falling crime rates.”  Later in the article, he purports that “The charge of socialism is secondary to the basic message that Obama can’t be trusted, not because he is a politician, but because he’s black.” Come on. The last thing I think anyone would see in this image, is a race issue. Agree? Disagree? Please leave a comment.