It was October 2012. Roei Elkabetz, a brigadier general for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), was explaining his country’s border policing strategies. In his PowerPoint presentation, a photo of the enclosure wall that isolates the Gaza Strip from Israel clicked onscreen. “We have learned lots from Gaza,” he told the audience. “It’s a great laboratory.”
Elkabetz was speaking at a border technology conference and fair surrounded by a dazzling display of technology -- the components of his boundary-building lab. There were surveillance balloons with high-powered cameras floating over a desert-camouflaged armored vehicle made by Lockheed Martin. There were seismic sensor systems used to detect the movement of people and other wonders of the modern border-policing world. Around Elkabetz, you could see vivid examples of where the future of such policing was heading, as imagined not by a dystopian science fiction writer but by some of the top corporate techno-innovators on the planet.
By Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP)and International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT)
NEW YORK (17 September, 2014)—More than $100 trillion in cumulative public and private spending, and 1,700 megatons of annual carbon dioxide (CO2)—a 40 percent reduction of urban passenger transport emissions—could be eliminated by 2050 if the world expands public transportation, walking and cycling in cities, according to a new report released by the University of California, Davis, and the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP).
Further, an estimated 1.4 million early deaths could be avoided annually by 2050 if governments require the strongest vehicle pollution controls and ultralow-sulfur fuels, according to a related analysis of these urban vehicle activity pathways by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) included in the report.
It turns out charities in Canada — at least the ones the government doesn’t like — are forbidden from “exercising moral pressure.” As if that isn’t the entire point of charitable enterprises. The absence of the profit motive and of self-interest in those involved in such an organization virtually defines a charity. Without those two things, what’s left is the pressure of morality compelling people to do the right thing.
On December 10, International Human Rights Day, federal Magistrate Matt Whitworth sentenced me to three months in prison for having crossed the line at a military base that wages drone warfare. The punishment for our attempt to speak on behalf of trapped and desperate people, abroad, will be an opportunity to speak with people trapped by prisons and impoverishment here in the U.S.
The current American war in Iraq is a struggle in search of a goal. It began in August as a humanitarian intervention, morphed into a campaign to protect Americans in-country, became a plan to defend the Kurds, followed by a full-on crusade to defeat the new Islamic State (IS, aka ISIS, aka ISIL), and then... well, something in Syria to be determined at a later date.
At the moment, Iraq War 3.0 simply drones on, part bombing campaign, part mission to train the collapsed army the U.S. military created for Iraq War 2.0, all amid a miasma of incoherent mainstream media coverage. American troops are tiptoeing closer to combat (assuming you don't count defensive operations, getting mortared, and flying ground attack helicopters as “combat”), even as they act like archaeologists of America’s warring past, exploring the ruins of abandoned U.S. bases. Meanwhile, Shia militias are using the conflict for the ethnic cleansing of Sunnis and Iran has become an ever-more significant player in Iraq's affairs. Key issues of the previous American occupation of the country -- corruption, representative government, oil revenue-sharing -- remain largely unresolved. The Kurds still keep “winning” against the militants of IS in the city of Kobani on the Turkish border without having “won.”
Children walk during a sandstorm in Gao, Mali. Credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino
UNITED NATIONS, Jan 23 2015 (IPS)- When the East African nation of Somalia, once described as a “lawless state”, ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) early this week, it left two countries in splendid isolation from the rest of the world: South Sudan and the United States.
In the name of protecting Woodland Caribou, the Alberta Government has killed more than 1000 wolves using poison, traps, and guns from helicopters. Hundreds of other animals have also been killed, including moose and elk to bait wolf traps. Others have died by eating poison intended for the wolves. It’s barbaric and senseless.
This is all happening in the name of protecting Woodland Caribou. They call it a “cull”. The problem is it doesn’t work.
The reality is Woodland Caribou are declining as a result of habitat loss and disruption. In order to survive, Woodland Caribou need large areas of undisturbed, old growth woodland habitat for food, shelter and protection.
Woodland caribou have already lost at least one-half of their historic range in Canada. We’re in danger of losing the caribou if we don’t get a handle on industrial development and enact strong laws to restrict activities in caribou habitat.
By Joan Russow, Global Compliance Research Project
In this 2008 file photo, General Dynamics' Edmonton facility celebrates the delivery of the 100th retrofit LAV III (Light Armoured Vehicle) to the Canadian Forces.
In April 2014, in the UN General Assembly, Canada, along with 153 states, officially voted in favour of the Arms Trade Treaty; . Many members states of the United Nations have wondered why Canada has neither signed nor ratified the treaty; they did not wonder why Saudi Arabia, abstained in the UNGA, or failed to sign and ratified.
Currently, 191 states have signed or ratified, Canada and Saudi Arabia have neither signed nor ratified the Arms Trade Treaty
Membership: 130 Signatories, 61 States Parties as of 1 January 2015 —
Sunlight pours over a break in canal-top solar panels recently installed over the Vadodara branch of the Sardar Sarovar canal project in Gujarat. Credit: Malini Shankar/IPS
BARODA, India, Jan 19 2015 (IPS) - It began with an experiment to install photovoltaic cells over an irrigation canal that forms part of the Sardar Sarovar canal network – a massive hydel power project across the River Narmada that irrigates some 1.8 million hectares of arable land in the western Indian state of Gujarat.