Apr 02 2014

Daily News Flash with Rahul Mahajan on NATO Shunning of Russia, Clapper’s Admission of US Spying, and Catholic Leaders on Immigration

Uprising’s guest expert Rahul Mahajan, a sociologist and news analyst and author of Full Spectrum Dominance: US Power in Iraq and Beyond, analyzes today’s news headlines:

NATO has announced it will suspend cooperation with Russia over its role in the Ukraine. In a meeting in Brussels yesterday, 28 foreign ministers representing countries from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization voted to cut ties with Russia. NATO General Secretary Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Russia’s action is “the gravest threat to European security in a generation and it challenges our vision of a Europe whole, free and at peace.” US Secretary of State John Kerry called Russian action “an attempt to change borders by use of force,” which NATO “takes seriously.” Click here for a CNN article about the story.

James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence has admitted for the first time that US residents have been subjected to email and phone surveillance by government agencies who used a secret rule change as legal justification. Previously the National Security Agency has only admitted to spying on people living outside the US. The admission came in a letter to Senator Ron Wyden who sits on the Intelligence Committee. Wyden, who is critical of the NSA’s spying program, called it a “backdoor search loophole.” Last year President Obama told Americans, “When it comes to telephone calls, nobody is listening to your telephone calls.” Click here for a Guardian newspaper article about the story.

As immigrant rights activists continue to push for federal reform through fasts and challenges at the border, a group of Catholic leaders this week held a mass at the border in Arizona. Their action adds to the political pressure aimed at Congress and the White House for comprehensive immigration reform. A number of bishops from the US Conference of Bishops attended the action and even performed the Catholic practice of offering communion to Mexicans on the other side of the border. Bishops are concerned especially about families in their congregations who are separated as a result of mass deportations under President Obama. Click here for a USA Today article about the story.

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