Apr 03 2014

Daily News Flash with Arun Gupta on Fort Hood Shooting, USAID Interference in Cuba, TA Strike at UCs

Uprising’s guest expert Arun Gupta, Independent Journalist and regular contributor to the Guardian, In These Times, The Progressive, and Truthout, and co-founder of the Occupied Wall Street Journal and the Indypendent, analyzes today’s news headlines:

A shooting at the Fort Hood Army Base in Texas has left four people dead including the shooter and 16 injured, in an echo of a 2009 mass shooting. The shooter, identified as Ivan Lopez, who killed himself, served four months in Iraq but reportedly saw no combat. Officials said he has been seeking treatment for mental illness including depression. A US Army psychiatrist named Nidal Malik Hasan currently faces the death sentence for a shooting at the same facility that took 13 lives 5 years ago. Click here for an Associated Press article about the story.

The Associated Press has acquired documents showing that US AID officials had started to covertly build a seemingly innocuous social media network in Cuba called ZunZuneo, to lure a critical mass of ordinary Cubans using sports and music news, with a plan to use it at a later time to trigger anti-government protests – a sort of “Cuban Spring.” The goal, according to one of the documents was to “renegotiate the balance of power between the state and society.” The network was constructed carefully using front companies and off-shore bank accounts in order to evade the Cuban government’s control of social media. Click here for a Guardian newspaper article about the story.

Graduate teaching assistants at UC Santa Cruz and UC Berkeley went on strike yesterday. Twenty students were arrested yesterday in Santa Cruz for blocking traffic. The students, who are represented by the United Auto Workers Local 2865, are protesting overwhelming workloads due to large class sizes and the lack of a proper contract. They are also pointing out intimidation tactics by UC Administrators. TAs from a total of 6 UC campuses are expected to be on strike today, representing 13,000 graduate students. Click here for a San Jose Mercury News article about the story.

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