Thursday July 19, 2007
Source: The Guardian
Tony Blair spoke to Rupert Murdoch three times in nine days in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq, it emerged yesterday, after the government caved in to a four-year campaign for the release of details of their conversations and meetings.
The Cabinet Office agreed to publish the dates of their contacts one day after the former prime minister left office. No further details of the calls are available and no details of informal meetings or conversations have been disclosed. Continue reading
[***Please note: Jihan El-Tahri’s film has been removed and replaced with a short related film***]
“CUBA! AFRICA! REVOLUTION!”
Jihan El Tahri’s 2007 documentary “CUBA! AFRICA! REVOLUTION!” (aka “Cuba, an African Odyssey”) tells the previously untold story of Cuba’s support for African revolutions. This documentary unravels the story of the so-called Cold War,through the prism of its least known arena: Africa. Against colonialism, capitalism, and communism, the newly independent nations attempted for the first time to gain real control of their own countries. From Che Guevara’s military campaign to avenge Lumumba in the Congo, up to the fall of apartheid in South Africa, 300,000 Cubans fought alongside African revolutionaries.
Patrice Lumumba was an African anti-colonial leader, and the first legally elected Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo, after he assisted it achieve independence from Belgium in June 1960. Only ten weeks later, Lumumba’s government was deposed in a coup. He was subsequently imprisoned and assassinated. President Colonel Mobutu, the key figure in the coup, supported by the Congo’s former colonial power, Belgium, and the CIA, became the Congo’s ruler. Cuba shared Africa’s revolutionary quest for independence.
Fidel Castro decided that Cuba could not stand idly by, so he sent Che Guevara to Africa to assess how they could aid local liberation movements. In 1965, Guevara went to the Congo in an attempt to spark a revolution against the pro-Western regime, which had emerged after the assassination of Lumumba. The problem was, Guevara was without formal military training, and was up against the Congolese, who were aided by US Army Special Forces. So he returned to Cuba and recruited 120 soldiers, taking them back to the Congo. Still, Guevara’s army was no match, and they eventually withdrew in August, 1965.
From the tragicomic epic of Che Guevara in Congo, to the triumph at the battle of Cuito Carnavale in Angola, Cuba: An African Odyssey attempts to understand the world today through the saga of these internationalists who won every battle, but finally lost the war.
Update: The documentary “Cuba, an African Odyssey” is due for general release on 21/01/2008
‘War by Media’
On 14 April 2006, the Heyman Center for the Humanities at Columbia University in New York brought together John Pilger, Seymour Hersh, Robert Fisk and Charles Glass for a discussion entitled ‘Breaking the Silence: War, lies and empire’.
The following is a transcript of John Pilger’s address Continue reading
The fall of communism was an opportunity to create more effective global political institutions based on democratic principles — institutions that could stop what appears to be, in its current form, the self-destructive tendency of our industrial world. If we do not want to be overrun by anonymous forces, the principles of freedom, equality and solidarity must start working globally. Continue reading