The French and Indian War (1754-1763)
The French Indian War was one of a series of wars between the British and French starting as early as the 1600s. The French Indian War took place from 1754 to 1763.
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In the 1750s, France and Britain were fighting in Europe. The war was now spreading to North America. British Colonists wanted to take over French land in North America. The British wanted to take over the fur trade in the French held territory.
County to hold public meeting about Karuk Tribe casino proposal
The board of supervisors in Siskiyou County, California, will hold a public meeting tomorrow about the casino proposed by the Karuk Tribe.
The tribe is planning a facility with 800 gaming machines, two restaurants, a bar and an 80-room hotel and 723 parking spaces. County officials have raised concerns about the project.
Our favorite #museumselfie is hanging up over our main entrance!
The girl in the middle is Edith Lee-Payne, and she was snapped by a photographer at the March in Washington, DC, in 1963. Her photograph became an iconic image, but she had no idea she was in the National Archives until 2008.
You can read more about Edith’s story of finding herself in the National Archives in this Prologue post.
According to the World Health Organization, 14.2 million girls under the age of 15 are forced into marriage each year. Alemtsahye Gebrekidan was one of them. At the tender age of 10, she was married off to a 16-year-old boy, gave birth when she was 13 and became widowed at the age of 14. She was then trafficked into Egypt and later to London where she currently resides. Alemtsahye, now 38, has set up a charity to help other former child brides from Ethiopia that is part of Girls Not Brides, a global network of NGOs working to end child marriage. ”I would say to girls, don’t marry. Enjoy your childhood and go to school –– learn. For me, I feel my childhood was robbed. I missed my education –– I ended up empty. I learned everything in London,” she said.
Read more via Daily Mail.
<iframe width=”560” height=”315” src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/y0GbNwKmHaE” frameborder=”0” allowfullscreen></iframe><iframe width=”560” height=”315” src=”//www.youtube.com/embed/y0GbNwKmHaE” frameborder=”0” allowfullscreen></iframe>MANUFACTURING GUILT is a short film that appears as a Bonus Feature on our dvd MUMIA: LONG DISTANCE REVOLUTIONARY (www.firstrunfeatures.com/mumiadvd.html)
. The short takes on the colossus of Abu-Jamal’s contentious case, distilling a mountain of evidence and years of oft-repeated falsehoods to the most fundamental elements of police and prosecutorial misconduct that illustrate a clear and conscious effort to frame Mumia Abu-Jamal for the murder of patrolman Daniel Faulkner.
Based on the actual record of investigations and court filings from 1995 to 2003 - evidence denied by the courts and ignored in the press - MANUFACTURING GUILT cuts through the years of absurdities and overt racism to produce a clear picture of how Abu-Jamal’s guilt was manufactured and his innocence suppressed beginning only moments after he and Faulkner were found shot in the early morning hours of December 9th, 1981. This historic and courageous film is the perfect companion to Long Distance Revolutionary - a film that is unequivocal in its force regarding Abu-Jamal’s innocence.
"A chilling and vital inside view." —Jamal Hart (Mumia’s eldest son)
"Excellent and concise piece of film journalism"—Trust Movies
"Terrific! Focuses on the actual crime, with lots of specific information, going point by point over everything that is known, including a journalist’s photos of the crime scene (those are amazing, by the way)… all of the questions I had (about the case) are answered in the short. So be sure to watch."—Pop Culture Beast
CIA and Mandela: Can the Story Be Told Now?
Agency’s role in Mandela capture still mostly not news
Back in 1990, FAIR (Extra!, 3/90) noted that the media coverage of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison failed to mention there was strong evidence that the CIA had tipped off South African authorities to Mandela’s location in 1962, resulting in his arrest.
So with coverage of Mandela’s death dominating the media now, can the story of the CIA’s role in Mandela’s capture be told?
The link between the CIA and Mandela’s capture—reported by CBS Evening News (8/5/86) and in a New York Times column by Andrew Cockburn (10/13/86)—was almost entirely unmentioned in media discussions of his death.
There were a few exceptions. MSNBC host Chris Hayes mentioned it on December 5 (“We know there’s reporting that indicates the CIA actually helped the South African police nab Mandela the first time he was captured”). On Melissa Harris-Perry’s MSNBC show (12/7/13), Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman brought it up:
The US devoted more resources to finding Mandela to hand over to the apartheid forces than the apartheid forces themselves. It was the CIA that actually located Mandela, and he was driving dressed up as a chauffeur when he was stopped, and he was arrested and ultimately serves 27 years in prison.
And on CNN’s Outfront (12/6/13), Cornel West told guest host Jake Tapper, “Keep in mind, though, Brother Jake, the CIA colluded with the apartheid regime to find Nelson Mandela when he was disguised as a chauffeur in 1961.”
The lesson might be that the kinds of guests rarely included in corporate media are the ones more likely to bring up this history.
In the New York Times' long obituary (12/6/13), Bill Keller presented it as a story that is yet to be confirmed: “There have been allegations, neither substantiated nor dispelled, that a CIA agent had tipped the police officers who arrested Mr. Mandela.” He reiterated that on NPR's Morning Edition (12/6/13): “I have not seen utterly convincing confirmation or refutation of it.”
Keller—who was convinced about Iraq’s WMDs—has presumably read the accounts of CIA involvement in Mandela’s capture, including a Cox News Service report (6/10/90) of a retired CIA official admitting that a CIA operative told him of the operation (“We have turned Mandela over to the South African security branch”) the day it happened.
So with Mandela’s death making headlines everywhere, there is still very little coverage of this part of the Mandela story. One place you can find it, though—the New York Times letters to the editor section today (12/10/13), where this appears under the headline “CIA and Mandela’s Arrest”:
To the Editor:
Nelson Mandela’s membership in the South African Communist Party in the early 1960s was acknowledged by the Communist Party itself last week, confirming the findings of my own historical research, reported by Bill Keller (“Nelson Mandela, Communist,” column, Dec. 8).
Perhaps the United States government will now confirm the role of the Central Intelligence Agency in Mr. Mandela’s arrest in August 1962, which is also indicated by my research. It was the height of the Cold War, and it was all a long time ago, but the truth still counts.
Amsterdam, December 9, 2013
"The truth still counts" shouldn’t just guide government decisions about what it chooses to reveal about its own history. It’s something journalists should consider too. Much of the coverage of Mandela is focused on his remarkable ability to forgive his opponents. It would be especially useful for US media to spell out which US government actions might have to be forgiven.
Since the transition to Black political rule, in 1994, South Africa has been governed by the African National Congress and its partners in the so-called Triple Alliance: the Congress of South African Trade Unions, or COSATU, and the South African Communist Party. It is a complicated and sometimes incestuous alliance, in which membership in the various legs of the triangle is often intertwined. And it is a relationship riddled with contradictions, the most fundamental of which now threaten to plunge South African society into a long night of bloody conflict.
In recent months, about 100,000 mineworkers have found themselves in deadly confrontation, not just with foreign-owned management, but with the South African state; with their own COSATU unions that are aligned with the South African state; and with a Communist Party that behaves as if it is part of the state. The mine workers, who thought the South African struggle had been waged for the benefit of people like themselves, have discovered there is no one to protect their interests, or even their very lives. Last August’s police massacre of 34 striking mine workers, at Marikana, showed that South Africa cannot forever put off the revolution that was left unfinished 18 years ago.
It is infinitely sad to hear Black South African union officials urge police to treat mine workers as “criminals” for demanding a living wage. It is bizarre in the extreme to hear high officials in a party that claims to be communist label workers that want to be represented by a union of their own choosing as “counter-revolutionaries.” Yet that is the madness unfolding in South Africa under the unholy Triple Alliance.
“This damnable arrangement benefits a small class of new Black millionaires whose fortunes are tied to white multinational capital.”
Late last month, in Rustenburg, police fired rubber bullets and live ammunition to disperse thousands of workers wearing T-shirts in remembrance of the slain Marikana miners and demanding that the police not “get away with murder.” All across the mining regions, workers seeking to organize outside the government-sanctioned unions are hunted down and prosecuted under spurious charges, physically tortured and vilified as enemies of the state and of their own class.
But the mineworkers know something about class warfare and class betrayal. They have seen that their unions, under COSATU, are aligned with a government whose main priority is to keep foreign investors happy, and that will sacrifice the mine workers living standards, their freedoms, and their blood, to keep the system just as it is. And they know that this damnable arrangement benefits a small class of new Black millionaires whose fortunes are tied to white multinational capital.
The great tragedy is that COSATU, the Communist Party and the African National Congress are so deeply embedded in the political culture of South Africa, that it will take a gargantuan struggle to pry loose that which has been hopelessly corrupted and to preserve those legacies worht salvaging. In the process, it seems inevitable that many thousands of Black South Africans will die.
Published on Feb 25, 2013
Poucos aqui no Brasil sabem o que aconteceu numa pequena escola na cidade de Riceville no interior do estado de Iowa nos EUA no dia 5 de abril de 1968. Talvez muitos saibam o que aconteceu no dia anterior, que foi a ignição para o evento que desejo narrar aqui: o assassinato de Martin Luther King Jr. Muita gente na época comemorou, outras não se importaram e muita gente se lamentou, mas pouquíssimas reagiram como Jane Elliott. Inconformada com o preconceito e o racismo em nossa sociedade, ela resolveu tomar uma atitude e ensinar os alunos de sua escola o que significa de fato esse comportamento tão abominável.
Munida apenas de suas habilidades como professora de 34 anos, de sua determinação em levar as situações até o limite e de sua conhecida máxima: “Oh, Grande Espírito, não me deixe jamais julgar um homem antes de andar em seus sapatos.”, ela elaborou uma dinâmica para realizar com seus alunos do ensino elementar na manhã seguinte.
South Africa’s young people today are known as the Born Free generation. They enjoy the dignity of being born into a democratic society with the right to vote and choose who will govern. But modern South Africa is not a perfect society. Full equality – social and economic – does not exist, and control of the country’s wealth remains in the hands of a few, so new challenges and frustrations arise. Veterans of the anti-apartheid struggle like myself are frequently asked whether, in the light of such disappointment, the sacrifice was worth it. While my answer is yes, I must confess to grave misgivings: I believe we should be doing far better.
There have been impressive achievements since the attainment of freedom in 1994: in building houses, crèches, schools, roads and infrastructure; the provision of water and electricity to millions; free education and healthcare; increases in pensions and social grants; financial and banking stability; and slow but steady economic growth (until the 2008 crisis at any rate). These gains, however, have been offset by a breakdown in service delivery, resulting in violent protests by poor and marginalized communities; gross inadequacies and inequities in the education and health sectors; a ferocious rise in unemployment; endemic police brutality and torture; unseemly power struggles within the ruling party that have grown far worse since the ousting of Mbeki in 2008; an alarming tendency to secrecy and authoritarianism in government; the meddling with the judiciary; and threats to the media and freedom of expression. Even Nelson Mandela’s privacy and dignity are violated for the sake of a cheap photo opportunity by the ANC’s top echelon.
“I found Marikana even more distressing: a democratic South Africa was meant to bring an end to such barbarity.”
Most shameful and shocking of all, the events of Bloody Thursday – 16 August 2012 – when police massacred 34 striking miners at Marikana mine, owned by the London-based Lonmin company. The Sharpeville massacre in 1960 prompted me to join the ANC. I found Marikana even more distressing: a democratic South Africa was meant to bring an end to such barbarity. And yet the president and his ministers, locked into a culture of cover-up. Incredibly, the South African Communist party, my party of over 50 years, did not condemn the police either.
South Africa’s liberation struggle reached a high point but not its zenith when we overcame apartheid rule. Back then, our hopes were high for our country given its modern industrial economy, strategic mineral resources (not only gold and diamonds), and a working class and organized trade union movement with a rich tradition of struggle. But that optimism overlooked the tenacity of the international capitalist system. From 1991 to 1996 the battle for the ANC’s soul got under way, and was eventually lost to corporate power: we were entrapped by the neoliberal economy – or, as some today cry out, we “sold our people down the river.”
What I call our Faustian moment came when we took an IMF loan on the eve of our first democratic election. That loan, with strings attached that precluded a radical economic agenda, was considered a necessary evil, as were concessions to keep negotiations on track and take delivery of the promised land for our people. Doubt had come to reign supreme: we believed, wrongly, there was no other option; that we had to be cautious, since by 1991 our once powerful ally, the Soviet union, bankrupted by the arms race, had collapsed. Inexcusably, we had lost faith in the ability of our own revolutionary masses to overcome all obstacles. Whatever the threats to isolate a radicalizing South Africa, the world could not have done without our vast reserves of minerals. To lose our nerve was not necessary or inevitable. The ANC leadership needed to remain determined, united and free of corruption – and, above all, to hold on to its revolutionary will. Instead, we chickened out. The ANC leadership needed to remain true to its commitment of serving the people.This would have given it the hegemony it required not only over the entrenched capitalist class but over emergent elitists, many of whom would seek wealth through black economic empowerment, corrupt practices and selling political influence.
To break apartheid rule through negotiation, rather than a bloody civil war, seemed then an option too good to be ignored. However, at that time, the balance of power was with the ANC, and conditions were favorable for more radical change at the negotiating table than we ultimately accepted. It is by no means certain that the old order, apart from isolated rightist extremists, had the will or capability to resort to the bloody repression envisaged by Mandela’s leadership. If we had held our nerve, we could have pressed forward without making the concessions we did.
“All means to eradicate poverty, which was Mandela’s and the ANC’s sworn promise to the “poorest of the poor,” were lost in the process.”
It was a dire error on my part to focus on my own responsibilities and leave the economic issues to the ANC’s experts. However, at the time, most of us never quite knew what was happening with the top-level economic discussions. As s Sampie Terreblanche has revealed in his critique, Lost in Transformation, by late 1993 big business strategies – hatched in 1991 at the mining mogul Harry Oppenheimer's Johannesburg residence – were crystallizing in secret late-night discussions at the Development Bank of South Africa. Present were South Africa's mineral and energy leaders, the bosses of US and British companies with a presence in South Africa – and young ANC economists schooled in western economics. They were reporting to Mandela, and were either outwitted or frightened into submission by hints of the dire consequences for South Africa should an ANC government prevail with what were considered ruinous economic policies.
All means to eradicate poverty, which was Mandela’s and the ANC’s sworn promise to the “poorest of the poor,” were lost in the process. Nationalisation of the mines and heights of the economy as envisaged by the Freedom charter was abandoned. The ANC accepted responsibility for a vast apartheid-era debt, which should have been cancelled. A wealth tax on the super-rich to fund developmental projects was set aside, and domestic and international corporations, enriched by apartheid, were excused from any financial reparations. Extremely tight budgetary obligations were instituted that would tie the hands of any future governments; obligations to implement a free-trade policy and abolish all forms of tariff protection in keeping with neo-liberal free trade fundamentals were accepted. Big corporations were allowed to shift their main listings abroad. In Terreblanche’s opinion, these ANC concessions constituted “treacherous decisions that [will] haunt South Africa for generations to come.”
“If we had held our nerve, we could have pressed forward without making the concessions we did.”
An ANC-Communist party leadership eager to assume political office (myself no less than others) readily accepted this devil’s pact, only to be damned in the process. It has bequeathed an economy so tied in to the neoliberal global formula and market fundamentalism that there is very little room to alleviate the plight of most of our people.
Little wonder that their patience is running out; that their anguished protests increase as they wrestle with deteriorating conditions of life; that those in power have no solutions. The scraps are left go to the emergent black elite; corruption has taken root as the greedy and ambitious fight like dogs over a bone.
In South Africa in 2008 the poorest 50% received only 7.8% of total income. While 83% of white South Africans were among the top 20% of income receivers in 2008, only 11% of our black population were. These statistics conceal unmitigated human suffering. Little wonder that the country has seen such an enormous rise in civil protest.
A descent into darkness must be curtailed. I do not believe the ANC alliance is beyond hope. There are countless good people in the ranks. But a revitalization and renewal from top to bottom is urgently required. The ANC’s soul needs to be restored; its traditional values and culture of service reinstated. The pact with the devil needs to be broken.
“The scraps are left go to the emergent black elite; corruption has taken root as the greedy and ambitious fight like dogs over a bone.”
At present the impoverished majority do not see any hope other than the ruling party, although the ANC’s ability to hold those allegiances is deteriorating. The effective parliamentary opposition reflects big business interests of various stripes, and while a strong parliamentary opposition is vital to keep the ANC on its toes, most voters want socialist policies, not measures inclined to serve big business interests, more privatization and neoliberal economics.
This does not mean it is only up to the ANC, SACP and Cosatu to rescue the country from crises. There are countless patriots and comrades in existing and emerging organized formations who are vital to the process. Then there are the legal avenues and institutions such as the public protector’s office and human rights commission that – including the ultimate appeal to the constitutional court – can test, expose and challenge injustice and the infringement of rights. The strategies and tactics of the grassroots – trade unions, civic and community organizations, women’s and youth groups – signpost the way ahead with their non-violent and dignified but militant action.
The space and freedom to express one’s views, won through decades of struggle, are available and need to be developed. We look to the Born Frees as the future torchbearers.
Ronnie Kasrils was a member of the national executive committee of the African National Congress from 1987 to 2007, and a member of the central committee of the South African Communist party from December 1986 to 2007. He was the country’s minister for intelligence services from 2004 to 2008. This is an edited extract from the new introduction to Kasrils’ autobiography, Armed and Dangerous.
Former Cabinet Minister Peter Hain commented of the trip:
“This just exposes his hypocrisy because he has tried to present himself as a progressive Conservative, but just on the eve of the apartheid downfall, and Nelson Mandela’s release from prison, when negotiations were taking place about a transfer of power, here he was being wined and dined on a sanctions-busting visit.
“This is the real Conservative Party … his colleagues who used to wear ‘Hang Nelson Mandela’ badges at university are now sitting on the benches around him. Their leader at the time Margaret Thatcher described Mandela as a terrorist.” (ii)
In the book of condolences opened at South Africa House, five minutes walk from his Downing Street residence, Cameron, who has voted for, or enjoined all the onslaughts or threatened ones referred to above, wrote:
“ … your generosity, compassion and profound sense of forgiveness have given us all lessons to learn and live by.
He ended his message with: “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.” Hopefully your lower jaw is still attached to your face, dear reader. If so, hang on to it, worse is to come.
The farcically titled Middle East Peace Envoy, former Prime Minister Tony Blair (think “dodgy dossiers” “forty five minutes” to destruction, illegal invasion, Iraq’s ruins and ongoing carnage, heartbreak, after over a decade) stated:
“Through his leadership, he guided the world into a new era of politics in which black and white, developing and developed, north and south … stood for the first time together on equal terms.
“Through his dignity, grace and the quality of his forgiveness, he made racism everywhere not just immoral but stupid; something not only to be disagreed with, but to be despised. In its place he put the inalienable right of all humankind to be free and to be equal.
“I worked with him closely … “ (iii) said the man whose desire for “humankind to be free and equal” (tell that to the Iraqis) now includes demolishing Syria and possibly Iran.
As ever, it seems with Blair, the memories of others are a little different:
“Nelson Mandela felt so betrayed by Blair’s decision to join the US-led invasion of Iraq that he launched a fiery tirade against him in a phone call to a cabinet minister, it emerged.
“Peter Hain who (knew) the ex-South African President well, said Mandela was ‘breathing fire’ down the line in protest at the 2003 military action.
“The trenchant criticisms were made in a formal call to the Minister’s office, not in a private capacity, and Blair was informed of what had been said, Hain added.
‘I had never heard Nelson Mandela so angry and frustrated.” (iv)
On the BBC’s flagship morning news programme “Today” former Prime Minister “Iraq is a better place, I’d do it again” Blair, said of Nelson Mandela:
“ … he came to represent something quite inspirational for the future of the world and for peace and reconciliation in the 21st century.”
Comment is left to former BBC employee, Elizabeth Morley, with peerless knowledge of Middle East politics, who takes no prisoners:
“Dear Today Complaints,
“How could you? Your almost ten minute long interview with the war criminal Tony Blair was the antithesis to all the tributes to the great man. I cannot even bring myself to put the two names in the same sentence. How could you?
“Blair has the blood of millions of Iraqis on his hands. Blair has declared himself willing to do the same to Iranians. How many countries did Mandela bomb? Blair condones apartheid in Israel. Blair turns a blind eye to white supremacists massacring Palestinians. And you insult us by making us listen to him while our hearts and minds are focussed on Mandela.
How could you?” (Reproduced with permission.)
As the avalanche of hypocrisy cascades across the globe from shameless Western politicians, Archbishop Desmond Tutu reflected in two lines the thoughts in the hearts of the true mourners:
“We are relieved that his suffering is over, but our relief is drowned by our grief. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.”