May 21 2010

Weekly Digest – 05/21/10

Weekly Digest | Published 21 May 2010, 12:13 pm | Comments Off on Weekly Digest – 05/21/10 -

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Our weekly edition is a nationally syndicated one-hour digest of the best of our daily coverage.

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This week on Uprising:

* Govt Agency Didn’t Require Permits for BP Rig Despite Warnings
* New Film by Oscar Nominee Laura Poitras Features Al Qaeda’s Abu Jandal
* Black Agenda Report on Arizona’s Immigration Law
* Mosque Terror Attack in Florida Ignored by Media

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Govt Agency Didn’t Require Permits for BP Rig Despite Warnings

Thursday marked 30 days since the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded, pumping the equivalent of the Exxon-Valdez spill into Gulf Coast waters every three days. BP is saying the mile-long tube inserted into the ruptured pipe this week is capturing 5,000 barrels of oil a day. The company also asserts that 5000 barrels is the total daily output of the gush, but that estimate was arrived at by out-dated means. A more sophisticated analysis has confirmed that the rate of flow is at least 5 times greater, and likely to be 10 times greater. Also this week news outlets and clean-up crews on the ground are reporting that BP is limiting their access to affected areas in an effort to block negative reports. Meanwhile, the Minerals Management Service, a government agency, will likely be dissolved and split into three separate agencies. This decision follows accusations that the agency routinely did not require necessary environmental permits for offshore drilling, including for the Deepwater Horizon rig. In responding to anonymous reports by scientists who say they were pressured to adjust the results of their studies in favor of drilling rights, the Obama administration came to the defense of Interior Secretary Ken Salazar who oversees the agency. Severe damage to the wildlife in the Gulf has already been witnessed, and environmental groups warn that much of the damage could be irreversible. There is also growing concern about the more than 400,000 gallons of oil dispersant that has been used in the waters. The chemical in question called Corexit, is apparently far more toxic and far less effective than other EPA-approved alternatives. Corexit is manufactured by a company once owned by Exxon Mobil, whose executives also sit on the board of BP.
GUEST: Kieran Suckling, Executive Director of the Center for Biological Diversity

For more information, visit www.biologicaldiversity.org.

New Film by Laura Poitras Features Al Qaeda’s Abu Jandal

The war in Afghanistan reached a grim milestone on Tuesday. A roadside bomb in Kabul brought the toll of American dead to over 1,000. After taking seven years to reach 500 deaths, the war claimed the second 500 American lives in less than two years. Now, award-winning film maker Laura Poitras, has made a new documentary, The Oath. The film details the lives of two brothers-in-law who served as Osama bin Laden’s trusted aides in Afghanistan before the September 11 attacks. The first is a man whose name is well known to most Americans – Salim Hamdan, bin Laden’s personal driver who was captured shortly after the U.S. invasion in 2001 and imprisoned in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. As Hamdan’s military lawyers navigate the tribunal system in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, Hamdan’s brother-in-law who goes by the name, Abu Jandal, becomes the narrative focus of the film. Jandal, once known as Al Qaeda’s Emir of Hospitality for his role in Afghanistan, screening new jihadis for bin Laden, now regales young Muslim men in his living room with stories of his days in Al Qaeda. Living in his homeland of Yemen, Abu Jandal is a “graduate” of The Dialogue, the Yemeni government’s re-education camp for imprisoned jihadis. Abu Jandal is man caught between two oaths: the oath to Al Qaeda and the oath he pledged to the Yemeni government not to wage jihad after his release from jail. Abu Jandal walks a balancing act between his new life as a father and taxi driver, and a practiced vetter of young Muslims willing to wage jihad. The Oath, by Laura Poitras opens in select theaters across the country in late May and early June. Laura Poitras is the acclaimed director of My Country My Country which was nominated for an Academy Award for best documentary and called by the Village Voice as “the definitive non-fiction film about the occupation of Iraq.” The New York Times called her new film The Oath, “[b]oth an intimate character study and a wide-ranging critique of the American War on Terror.”

Find out where and when The Oath is playing at www.theoathmovie.com.

Black Agenda Report on Arizona’s Immigration Law

Glen FordGlen Ford is a writer and radio commentator and the Executive Editor of The Black Agenda Report. This week’s commentary is on Arizona’s Immigration Law.

Visit www.blackagendareport.com for more information.

Mosque Terror Attack in Florida Ignored by Media

floridaA pipe bomb was detonated outside Jacksonville’s Islamic Center of Northeast Florida during evening prayers a week before last Monday. No worshippers were harmed. A surveillance video shows a middle aged man carrying a can of gasoline and the pipe bomb. Local and state police and the FBI are investigating allegations that ACT! for America, an anti-Islam hate group that has been harassing members of Florida’s prominent Muslim community, is responsible. Brigitte Gabriel, the founder of ACT! for America has made a number of disturbing statements, even claiming that a “practicing Muslim, who believes in the teachings of the Koran, cannot be a loyal citizen to the United States of America.” A man who barged into the mosque on April 4th crying, “Stop this blasphemy” and threatening to return may also be responsible. The perpetrator could be charged with committing a hate crime, church arson, and domestic terrorism, and may face anywhere from 10 years to life in prison. The Council on American Islamic Relations or CAIR is offering a 5000 dollar reward for information leading to the capture and conviction of the bomber. This attack comes during a tidal wave of anti-Muslim sentiment in Florida that has grown following the Times Square car bomb attempt in New York. Parvez Ahmed, a University of North Florida professor who was recently appointed to the Jacksonville city council despite a torrid smear campaign, has faced a slew of inappropriate badgering from fellow council members. One council member declared that Ahmed “would be offended by a prayer to Jesus, and therefore was not suitable to serve on the commission.” Florida Republican Congressional candidate Dan Fanelli is attempting to use racial profiling as a campaign strategy.

GUEST: Ramsey Kilic, Executive Director of CAIR Tampa

Find out more at www.cair.com.

Sonali’s Subversive Thought for the Day

“Everybody’s worried about stopping terrorism. Well, there’s a really easy way: stop participating in it.” — Noam Chomsky

UPDATE: Seven months after the bombing of the Islamic Center of Northeast Florida in Jacksonville, the FBI finally made headway in the case. In November 2010, federal investigators released to the public, a sketch of a man they believe is the perpetrator. They also released surveillance video footage of a white man wearing a black baseball cap and T-shirt. Local News channel WJXT quoted FBI officials as saying the suspect is likely to be local to the Jacksonville area and could have radical, Christian beliefs. At this time there is no evidence that the person suspected of being the perpetrator acted in concert with or on behalf of any group or organization. Rewards totaling $35,000 are being offered for his arrest and conviction. Meanwhile on January 24, 2011, a white man named Roger Stockham from Imperial Beach, California was arrested for a similar crime: attempting to blow up an Islamic Center in Dearborn, Michigan.

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