From the original …..


'We won't allow the truth to set you free!'

‘We won’t allow the truth to set you free!’

The Israeli coordination with Google and YouTube has very serious implications, and many journalists have spoken out in opposition, saying it is a direct assault on the Freedom of the Press.


Israel To Coordinate With Google, YouTube, To Censor Palestinian Videos Of Conflict

By Saed Bannoura

The Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister, Member of Knesset Tzipi Hotovely, held meetings this week with representatives of YouTube and Google, to find ways of cooperating to censor Palestinian videos from occupied Palestine, videos she dubbed as “inciting violence and terrorism.”

Israeli daily Maariv said Hotovely will be working with Google and YouTube officials in a joint mechanism that will be in charge of “monitoring and preventing” any publication of materials deemed by Tel Aviv to be “inflammatory.”

Hotovely announced in a Hebrew-only press release that she met with YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, and Google’s Director of Public Policy, Jennifer Oztzistzki, at Google’s Silicon Valley Offices.

Hotovely said that she received a comprehensive review mechanism for companies to monitor the films that allegedly incite violence, claiming that the supposed ‘incitement videos’ drive young children to go out and stab: “The attacks daily in Israel are the result of youths and children incited by the education system and the social networks, this is a daily war of incitement.”

She said that Google agreed to strengthen the bilateral relations with Israel’s Foreign Ministry, and build a mechanism of “collaborative work” that would make both parties partners in monitoring the published materials and censoring them.

The Israeli move comes amidst escalating tension in occupied Palestine, and a large number of videos, including those showing Israeli soldiers and officers killing Palestinians execution-style after injuring them, and many videos that in general highlight the suffering of the Palestinian people, living under the illegal Israeli occupation of Palestine.

The Israeli coordination with Google and YouTube has very serious implications, and many journalists have spoken out in opposition, saying it is a direct assault on the Freedom of the Press.

All foreign journalists who report in the Occupied Territories are required to register with the Israeli military, and any footage that they film is required to go through the Israeli Military Censor’s office before it can be released.

With the recent advances in technology, many Palestinians and other civilians have been able to post videos uncensored online.

The Israeli government has frequently voiced its discontent with this development, and have worked to find ways to continue to censor videos coming out of the Occupied Palestinian Territories.



Fighting hatred Canadian style ….

'Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven' ...

‘Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven’ …

Peterborough Mosque Fire Sees Jews Step In To Help

A synagogue in Peterborough, Ont. is giving Muslims a place to pray after their mosque was set on fire in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris.

The Beth Israel Synagogue has offered up some space so that members of the Masjid Al-Salaam mosque, which serves hundreds, can worship there while they wait for their building to be repaired, The Canadian Jewish News reported.

Beth Israel already shares space with the Unitarian Fellowship, said The Peterborough Examiner.

After learning that police are investigating the weekend fire as a hate crime, both the synagogue’s board and the Unitarians agreed unanimously to share space with worshippers from the mosque.

“We’re all in this together,” synagogue president Larry Gillman told the Canadian Jewish News. “We may be different religions, but we’re all one people and in times like this we have to stick together.”

An online fundraiser has collected more than $110,000 to help repair the only mosque in Peterborough.

“We know how people are in Peterborough and they’ve always been great,” said Kenzu Abdella, president of the Kawartha Muslim Religious Association which runs the mosque.

He told the told the Canadian Jewish News, “If I go to the mosque right now, even though it is locked and there is no one from our community, you will find people there leaving letters and flowers.”

Elsewhere in Canada, synagogues are stepping up to sponsor families fleeing the war in Syria.

Vancouver’s Temple Sholom has raised $40,000 to support a family, and it may even sponsor a second one, while Toronto’s Congregation Darchei Noam has raised $30,000 for a Syrian family.

Photos and video at Source


Image by Carlos Latuff

Erdogan says 'truly saddened' by Russian plane downing...sure!

Erdogan says ‘truly saddened’ by Russian plane downing…sure!


It already is one …. but the following is a good warning nevertheless

South Africa’s last white president and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Frederik Willem de Klerk urges Israelis not to follow the same path as his own country, because that could would lead to the abyss.


De Klerk: Without two-state solution, Israel could turn into apartheid state

Frederik Willem de Klerk, 79, South Africa’s last white president and a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, visited Israel this week. He was a guest at an anti-racism conference organized by the Berl Katznelson Foundation. I met him in Tel Aviv the next day. “I don’t give one-on-one interviews anymore,” he told me. Eventually, he relented, and I can see why. Using polite, carefully crafted words, he sought to tell the Israelis: Don’t follow the same path as my country, South Africa, because that road would lead you into the abyss.

Is Israel an apartheid state?

“I don’t think so,” he said. “But if the two-state solution is not implemented, and if, in such a situation, the Jews have special rights while the Palestinians live as second-class citizens, Israel will become an apartheid state.”

What do you mean?

“The essence of apartheid is racial discrimination,” he said. “We didn’t invent it: All of the colonial powers led such regimes. In 1948, we turned the policy that was already being implemented on the ground into law. That was stage one. In the second stage, John Vorster, the prime minister during the 70s, tried to address the de-colonization process. He gave independence to nine black districts. It was a wish, a fiction – the world refused to recognize it.

“In the third stage, we tried to give both blacks and Indians partial political rights and divide the land. That stage was also unsuccessful: The offered land was divided into enclaves and too small; the blacks didn’t regard independence as a solution. And then came the fourth stage: One state. At that point, it was the only logical solution.”

Did the international boycott and the economic sanctions against South Africa play a part in reaching the agreement?

De Klerk opposes the boycott against Israel. He is convinced the boycott against his own country did not have any significant impact.

“The sanctions cost us 1.5 percent of growth per year,” he said. “We could have lasted like that for 10-15 years more.

“It wasn’t the boycott that determined what would happen, but our conscience. The only solution that was morally defendable was to begin negotiations and reach a constitution that completely eradicates the apartheid regime and recognize the different sectors in the population and minorities’ rights.”

De Klerk is not eager to talk about it, but the agreement that was reached is far from perfect. The whites went from being a privileged minority to a minority that is being discriminated against. The government is plagued with corruption; there’s no personal sense of security; there is no law.

What can we learn from your experience?

“As an outsider, it seems to me that the window of opportunity for the two-state solution is about to close. You might miss this chance.”

In the interim period after the end of the apartheid regime, I visited South Africa twice. It seems the young white people are leaving, en mass.

“It’s true,” he said. “Many have left – some 800,000. Half of them left because they wanted to experience the world, and half because they didn’t want to live under a black government. They emigrated to Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Britain.”

How is it that you of all people, who represented the right wing in a right wing white party, led to the agreement with the African National Congress?

He smiled. “They voted for me because they thought I was the most conservative of all candidates. They were wrong about me.

“A leader’s job is not to follow opinion polls. Leadership requires taking an initiative, a vision, a true aspiration to improve the situation, and the ability to convince your voters that the change in the status quo will benefit them in the long-run. That’s what I did on the white side, and that’s what Mandela did on the black side. We both did it while facing harsh criticism from our camps.

“When I put the agreement to a referendum in 1992, nearly 70 percent of the white population voted in favor. The third that voted against it is angry with me to this very day.”

The director of the Berl Katznelson Foundation, Doron Elhanani, told de Klerk about Marwan Barghouti.

Can Barghouti, like Mandela, make decisions from prison that no one else dares make on the outside?

“I don’t know anything about the man,” de Klerk said. “The lesson we learned many years ago, before we freed Mandela, was that you have to negotiate with whoever has the support of the majority.”

How much of a role did the international community play in reaching your agreement?

“In our case,” he said, “a very small role. Your situation is different, because the conflict was on the international agenda from the beginning. The world can bridge and help, but the decision is primarily yours.”




Israel And Apartheid: By People Who Knew Apartheid. Image by Latuff

Israel And Apartheid: By People Who Knew Apartheid.
Image by Latuff


Hopefully you enjoyed your 
Thanksgiving dinner yesterday...
But what exactly were you thankful for?
                        For This? 
                       Or This??

“I suppose I should be ashamed to say that I take the western view of the Indian. I don’t go so far as to think that the only good Indian is the dead Indian, but I believe nine out of every ten are, and I shouldn’t like to inquire too closely into the case of the tenth.”

Teddy Roosevelt


                    Thanks Giving

© By Tom Karlson

That original sin

Our original sin

Not a talking snake sin

No Adam or Eve sin

This original sin

This first holocaust sin

This First Nation

ten million

Double helixed


Long gone sin

200 languages silenced sin

This good, drunk, dead, jailed, Indian sin


310 million All-Americans

Sit at the table eating

Corn, sweet potatoes, turkey

Watching football

Giving thanks

                        And Now This ... 
             The Thanks We Get

© By Steve Amsel

When we came to this land

You were mere savages

Hunting in the bush

And praying to trees.

We brought you guns

And taught you how

To destroy each other

So there would be more food.

When you were cold

We gave you blankets

Covered with smallpox germs

So you would not suffer long.

We gave you our god

So we could tax you

Of whatever valuables

You may have had.

When you had children

We took them from you so

You would not have to worry

About raising them.

We killed off your menfolk

So your children would

Be born the same

Color as us.

All these things we did for you

And you show us

No appreciation

At all.

You speak now

Of breaking away

And self government,

Is this the thanks we get?

   All of the above could have been 
avoided if the Native People followed 
their instincts 
Thank to WRH for this one

Thanks to WRH for this one

On a lighter note, enjoy the following …


Image by Carlos Latuff

I understand why Turkey shot down a Russian plane. Erdogan is only protecting his friends...

I understand why Turkey shot down a Russian plane. Erdogan is only protecting his friends…


During his meeting with Netanyahu in West Jerusalem, Kerry, probably out of naivety, asked the Israeli premier if there was still any possibility Israel could temporarily freeze the unrelenting settlement expansion in the West Bank.
Netanyahu’s reply came soon. “No, there will be no settlement freeze.”!!

Kerry’s half-hearted visit, another exercise in futility

By Khalid Amayreh in Occupied Palestine

The latest visit to Israel-occupied Palestine by US Secretary of State John Kerry this week is a clear-cut exercise in futility.

It is also inconceivable that Kerry himself had not realized the futility of his visit, even before it began.

I really feel sorry for the American tax-payers who get robbed by an administration whose policy in the Middle East is based on cheating the American people as well as pandering to a criminal racist state, 10,000 kilometers away, a state that teaches its people that non-Jews are virtual animals, created by God for a sole reason, namely in order to serve the Jews.

While in West Jerusalem, Kerry babbled the few usual platitudes which he and other American officials babble in such circumstances.

He called on both Israel and the Palestinians “the criminal and the victim” to exercise self-restraint. He also reiterated his country’s commitment to Israel’s security.

However, during his meeting with Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, Kerry made no such commitment, as if only Israel, a nuclear power which also is in tight control of US domestic politics, deserved and needed security.

Kerry renewed his support for the two-state solution, giving the impression that such a solution was still possible or feasible, especially in light of the cancerous growth of Jewish settlements in the West Bank and Jerusalem.

Needless to say, all meaningful observers now agree that this expansion of Jewish colonies has killed any realistic prospects for the establishment of a viable Palestinian state.

I don’t know why Kerry is still insisting on regurgitating this stale lie every time he comes to the region. Do his advisors not tell him that the two-state solution is dead?

Or Does he invoke the lie deliberately and knowingly in order to boost the morale of  the likes of Mahmoud Abbas and Sa’eb Ereikat in order  to  keep their futile day- dream alive, even if that dream is no better than chasing the mirage of  the desert?

I don’t know why Palestinian and Arab leaders continue to view Kerry and his boss in Washington as capable of recovering Palestinian rights from Israel’s criminal hands. Are these so-called leaders idiots or imbeciles? Haven’t they learnt from more than 60 years of experience with US policy in the region? Haven’t they internalized Walid Khalid’s iconic remark that “America is the ultimate tormentor of the Palestinian people?”

Indeed, if successive and more powerful administrations from Nixon’s to Bush’s couldn’t convince Israel to keep the purported two-state solution alive, is it logical to expect this impotent administration to do it?

After all, Obama has been standing silent, watching Bashar Assad murder nearly half a million of his own people rather passively, pretending that the slow-motion holocaust was occurring on a distant planet.

Similarly, the Obama administration is the same administration that has been watching Israel decapitate whatever chances there may have been for the establishment of a true Palestinian state.

In fact, the Obama administration, far from punishing Israel for its aggressive anti-peace policies, rewarded the criminal entity by providing it with the latest and most advanced aircraft in the American arsenal.

During his meeting with Netanyahu in West Jerusalem, Kerry, probably out of naivety, asked the Israeli premier if there was still any possibility Israel could temporarily freeze the unrelenting settlement expansion in the West Bank.

Netanyahu’s reply came soon. “No, there will be no settlement freeze.”!!

I don’t know if Kerry felt he had to apologize for having had the audacity to ask the question in the first place. He must have felt his utter insignificance vis-à-vis Netanyahu whose behaviors vis-à-vis Washington often gives the impression that the US is actually Israel’s vessel state.

But this is an old story which was explained in meticulous details by the late American Jewish author and intellectual Alfred Lilienthal in his book of the century, the Zionist Connection.

In fact, I invoked this story in order to remind a new generation of Palestinian leaders that things pertaining to the US, Israel and the Palestinian issue have effectively remained unchanged.

Israel remains the proverbial organ grinder and the US remains the proverbial monkey. (The adage goes “why speak to the monkey when you can speak to the organ grinder.”)

And, as we all know, the Palestinians remain the proverbial day-dreamer who cry out for justice, thinking that the two devils will eventually come to their senses and internalize the language of justice.

But they will not.




Image by Carlos Latuff


A Russian Su-24 fighter has been shot down in Syria, the Russian Defense Ministry said, adding the plane hadn’t violated Turkish airspace and was flying at an altitude of 6,000 meters.


This song cycle with images encapsulates modern Holy Land history and imperial machinations, with attention to varying Jewish and Palestinian views on Israel and the struggle for Palestinian survival and sovereignty. The piece was produced in 2005, the visuals re-mixed in 2015. The journals that were the basis of the text are at 


Pollard's useless Israeli passport

Pollard’s useless Israeli passport


Prepared by Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD


Spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard was released from US prisons. He did so
much damage to US security and could still do more damage that he should
have never been released. He is to stay in the US for five years and then
want to move to Palestine to settle on stolen lands as part of apartheid
colonial regime. He divorced his American wife while in prison and married
an Israeli wife. I would not be surprised to see him become an Israeli
minister. After all, Israel rewarded those who even killed US Citizens 
(see for example and). 
Yet, Israel continues to infiltrate the US 
at the highest levels 
(see for example these troubling incidents )

Sunday as almost every day, Palestinian natives were murdered by colonial
settlers. In an incident Sunday morning Israeli colonial settlement leader
Gershon Mesika rammed a teenage girl with his car, claiming 'she had a
knife'. When the girl, Ashraqat Taha Qatanany, 16, from Nablus, fell to the
ground, another Israeli paramilitary settler pulled over and shot her
multiple times.As in many similar incidents, eyewitness (and in some cases
video evidence) showed there was no knives and knives are planted later
near the victims. Later Sunday Taxi driver  Shadi Mohammad Mahmoud Khseib
from al-Bireh was killed when he had an accident and he was murdered by
colonial settler as soon as he stepped out of his car to deal with the
accident. A third Palestinian was also murdered. Several young people were
kidnapped by occupation forces and children continue to be held and abused
in Israeli gulags.

In other news, the Israeli Knesset is considering more racist laws to add
to the dozens of laws already making life hell for us native Palestinians.
One new law will allow actual prison sentences for children under age 14
(ofcourse only if they are Palestinian and do something to resist colonial
occupation). Another law will force taxation of Israeli non-governmental
organizations and apply draconian measures to them if they speak out for
human righst and receive funding from abroad (of course Zionist
organizations will be exempt from this law).


Allow me to start this post with some reflections on a past incident …..

The year was 1962. It was October, the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis. I was invited one evening to attend a performance of Swan Lake. The Bolshoi Ballet Company were the stars. I was invited by a Soviet friend of mine who was working as a press agent in New York.

When we arrived at Madison Square Garden I was seated next to the Soviet Foreign Minister, Anastas Mikoyan. He was in New York to address the United Nations General Assembly during the crisis.

A few minutes after we were seated another guest arrived, Adlai Stevenson, the US Ambassador to the United Nations.

He walked up to Mikoyan with arms outstretched and they both hugged and kissed each other like long lost brothers.

That very afternoon the two of them ‘went at each other’ in scenes watched by millions on TV.

Adlai Stevenson shows aerial photos of Cuban missiles to the United Nations, October 25, 1962.

Adlai Stevenson shows aerial photos of Cuban missiles to the United Nations, October 25, 1962.

Stubborn person that I am I refused to even shake the hand of Stevenson. I remember Mikoyan whispering in my ear at that point that ‘I would never become a diplomat’. He was right, but in all these years I never lost my integrity either, which is more important.

All of the above prove the immortal words of William Shakespeare;

All the world’s a stage,

And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.
Then, the whining school-boy with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow. Then, a soldier,
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden, and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then, the justice,
In fair round belly, with a good capon lined,
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws, and modern instances,
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slippered pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,

Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

And now, the above connection to today’s post ….

Note that the stage settings are different today and there are new ‘script writers, but all else remains the same.

The following is a headline from today’s Ynet News

Labour boycotts company with Israel ties

That’s fine ….. but the rest of the article leaves much to be desired. Hopefully it is merely a zionist initiated BEX Alert and not true, fabricated because of his expressed support for the Palestinian Struggle. Otherwise, The Labour Party will definitely not receive any forthcoming endorsement from this Website.

UK’s second-largest party voted to boycott a major company with commercial ties to Israel while party head Jeremy Corbyn calls for negotiations with ISIS.

Negotiations with ISIS???? Does he not know who they are? Does he think we don’t know either??

Made in Israel and the USA ... Believe it or don't!

Made in Israel and the USA …
Believe it or don’t!

One does NOT negotiate with the likes of ISIS. One exposes them which will lead to their eventual destruction!

As was posted a few days ago, The best way for Americans to defeat the Islamic state is to end support for Jewish nationalism SEE

Shame on Jeremy Corbyn for thinking otherwise.

While the party was busy boycotting a company for its ties to Israel, the party’s leader, Jeremy Corbyn, was calling for negotiations with the Islamic State terror organization. We should not be “drawn into responses that feed a cycle of violence and hate,” Corbyn said yesterday.

“The dreadful Paris attacks make the case for a far more urgent effort to reach a negotiated settlement of the civil war in Syria and to end the threat from ISIS,” he concluded.

Full Ynet Report HERE


One Hundred years later New Yorkers remember …

Photos © by Bud Korotzer




You too can keep his memory alive!

Remembering the Life and Music of Labor Agitator Joe Hill, Who Was Executed 100 Years Ago Today


He was killed by firing squad in the state of Utah on November 19, 1915.

He was killed by firing squad in the state of Utah on November 19, 1915.

Joe Hill saw his music as a weapon in the class war, composing songs to be sung on soapboxes, picket lines or in jail. And 100 years ago today, the forces of capital and the state of Utah executed him.

Chicago musician and scholar Bucky Halker is honoring the centennial with a CD of new interpretations of Hill’s music, “Anywhere But Utah—The Songs of Joe Hill,” taking his title from Hill’s dying wish that his remains be transported out of state because he didn’t want “to be found dead in Utah.” The album includes such familiar Hill classics as “The Preacher and the Slave,” “There is Power in a Union” and “Rebel Girl” as well as some surprising obscurities, like the wistfully romantic “Come and Take a Joy-Ride in My Aeroplane.”

Born Joel Hagglund in Sweden, Hill immigrated to the United States in 1902, changing his name to Joseph Hillstrom, which would eventually be shortened to Joe Hill. Working his way across the country, Hill became politicized, eventually joining the Industrial Workers of the World. Popularly known as the Wobblies, the IWW sought to organize those workers more mainstream unions avoided—the unskilled, migrants, immigrants, minorities—in an effort to combine the entire working class into One Big Union.

As a Wobbly, Hill was active in free speech fights in Fresno and San Diego, a strike of railroad construction workers in British Columbia and even fought in the Mexican Revolution.

In 1914, Hill was arrested in Salt Lake City and charged with killing a storekeeper, allegedly in a botched robbery. Despite the flimsy nature of the evidence, Hill was convicted and sentenced to death, with the prosecutor urging conviction as much on the basis of Hill’s IWW membership as any putative evidence of his involvement in the crime. An international amnesty movement pressed for a new trial, but the Utah governor refused and Hill was executed by firing squad on November 19, 1915. In a final message to IWW General Secretary Bill Haywood, Hill urged, “Don’t waste any time in mourning—organize.”

Since his death, Hill has been immortalized in a wide variety of cultural expression, including poetry by Kenneth Patchen, fiction by Wallace Stegner, and a song by Alfred Hayes and Earl Robinson, popularized by Paul Robeson, promising “where workingmen are out on strike, Joe Hill is at their side.”

I talked to Halker about Hill’s music, politics and legacy. Halker is the author of the seminal work on Gilded Age labor music,For Democracy, Workers, and God: Labor Song-Poems and Labor Protest, 1865-95, and has previously released a tribute album to Woody Guthrie.

For one who was not a native English speaker, Joe Hill had a keen understanding of American slang, humor, and various folk and popular song forms. How did he become such a master of the American vernacular? How does he compare with other folksingers closely associated with insurgent movements, such as Woody Guthrie?

Hill is part of a long tradition of “organic” intellectuals in the USA. He was also just plain smart, which you can tell from reading his lyrics and other writing. He was self-educated, with an appetite for ideas. And remember that the labor movement was filled with men and women of this sort, dating to the early 19th century. Unions, of course, often had their own libraries, so workers could check out literature related to everything from poetry to economics. Also, cheap pamphlets on the issues of the day, including Marxism, were extremely common in the years after the Civil War and well into the 20th century. If you look at the people who wrote labor music and poetry, they typically share this kind of background.

Hill and Guthrie also share a tremendous skill in the realm of vernacular speech. He mastered all this hobo and Wobbly slang of the era and the latest music-hall, vaudeville lyrics of the day. Also, Hill’s work is filled with humor, irony and sarcasm—hardly easy skills to gain in your second language. No doubt he picked all this up from hobos, labor activists, and Wobblies, but I also believe his ear for music helped him in this effort.

Hill had some musical training and a passion for music that is obvious in his lyrical approach. You can tell from his lyrics that he paid close attention to the musical hall and Tin Pan Alley writers of the day. Most of them were also immigrants or children of immigrants and were very skilled at slang, lyrical twists and clever use of idioms. Indeed, Hill’s lyrics and choice of tunes have much more in common with music hall composers than the folk or county models that Guthrie and others made use of in the years of the great labor uprising of the 1930s and which became the template for labor songsters thereafter.

Hill and other Wobbly bards and writers should get some credit for their use of sarcasm and irony in the development of American literature. They had sharp wits and tongues that worked deftly and quickly, which only pissed off the lunkhead bosses, the law and the ruling elite even more. The authorities and their lackeys dislike radicals even more when they’re much smarter than they are.

What was the role of music in the creation of the Wobbly movement culture?

Music was a centerpiece of the Wobbly “movement culture.” However, I wouldn’t say this came into existence with the IWW. Earlier, the abolitionists and the Gilded Age labor movement made singing, songwriting, poetry and other forms of writing a key part of their efforts. Coal miners and Jewish textile workers had already developed a strong working-class poetic and musical tradition, as did the Knights of Labor. So Joe Hill and Woody Guthrie were standing on big shoulders.

Having said that, the IWW took the music and poetry to new heights and cleverly used singing and chanting as a way to garner attention from workers, the media, and the authorities. Fifty workers singing makes a lot more noise at a rally or in a jail cell than one speaker on a soapbox or one person ranting in the joint.

What kinds of considerations did you take into account in updating Hills music?

I quickly decided I wanted to record a couple of the sentimental love songs because that part of Hill’s personality had been neglected. They read like old vaudeville and Tin Pan Alley lyrics, so I worked on melodies and chord changes that were common to those types of pieces. I also decided that on songs like “Ta Ra Ra Boom De Ay” and “It’s A Long Way Down to the Soupline” that I wanted to use a brass band that had the flavor of the music hall that Hill was leaning on. I hoped to make it a bit like a drunken Salvation Army band in the process, which fit the brass band sound anyway.

I knew he’d been to Hawaii and the Pacific Islands too, so I decided to do a couple songs with the ukulele at the center, which was appropriate given some things I’d read on Hill and the music he heard on that trip (plus the ukulele had become popular at the time).

I wanted to make a record that Hill would like. That was my priority from the beginning. I don’t think he’d like a straight folk revival, strumming acoustic guitar approach, as that has nothing to do with most of his material. He played the piano and the fiddle, after all. The folk revivalists did a great service by keeping Hill’s work in circulation, but trying to keep him in that small musical box is way off the mark. So, I borrowed from vaudeville and the music hall, piano blues and early jazz, alt-country, swing, punk and gospel.

I think Joe would be very happy with this recording—more so than what’s preceded.

What sorts of musical choices did Hill make? What kinds of influences did he draw on?

Hill came from a music-loving family and he also had some musical training as a child before his dad died and the family fell on hard times. He heard a lot of religious music, as his family were strong Lutherans and sometimes attended Salvation Army gatherings. Since hymns were well known, even across sectarian religious (and political) lines, hymn tunes were often used by labor songwriters going back to the mid-19th century. Hill’s use of “In the Sweet By and By” as the tune for “The Preacher and the Slave” was very much in a labor tradition, as was “Nearer My God to Thee” for his “Nearer My Job to Thee.”

Hill also wrote his own music for some of his songs—for his classic “Rebel Girl,” for example. And though he leaned heavily for the music of the “Internationale” for his “Workers of the World Awaken,” he did include clear pieces of his own work in writing that one, too.

But most often he drew on the vaudeville, music hall, early Tin Pan Alley songs that were popular with workers at the time. For “Ta Ra Ra Boom De Ay” he took the tune from a music hall hit by the same name. For “Scissor Bill” he took the tune from “Steamboat Bill,” which was a huge hit at the time and a best-selling early recording.

With all his tune choices, he was like other working-class writers and had the same goal—use tunes that workers knew already for labor songs and then they’d be easy for workers to sing.

Can you give the background of some of the other songs?

“Der Chief of Fresno” grew out of the IWW’s free speech campaign. Fresno was a place where the police were notably confrontational. Hill added his voice to the mix with a piece that appears to have been a chant of sorts. That’s why I added the multiple voices on the words “der chief” whenever it comes around. I like the use of the German “Der” in the title, as if the chief might make a good member of the oppressive Prussian army.

“Stung Right” represents the strong anti-military bent of the IWW, even before the outbreak of World War I. Many immigrant workers had already come from regions of the world where they were drafted and made to fight the battles for the ruling class and were determined to stay out of future such wars. What’s more, many working-class groups saw war as a senseless ruling class fight that only pitted workers against each other. Nationalism was seen as suspect.

Little wonder, then, that after the Spanish-American War in 1898, and the needless slaughter it entailed, anti-war and anti-military sentiments found welcome ears. Hill was aware that workers also signed up with the military when their economic situations were difficult. At least they gave you a bit of cash and some food in the army. In this piece, he’s warning workers not to fall for it

“Rebel Girl” is another of his best efforts. Hill wrote it himself for Elizabeth Gurley Flynn. Hill followed her career closely and admired her work on behalf of labor. They frequently corresponded while Hill was in prison. He even wrote a cute little song for her son called “Bronco Buster Flynn.” Flynn had visited Hill while he was awaiting execution and sent him a photo of her son Buster.

One song that struck me was “Come Take a Joy Ride in My Aeroplane.” As you say in your liner notes, that seems to represent a “romantic and carefree side” that we don’t typically associate with Hill.

There were three of these romantic, sentimental songs that Hill wrote, all of which were discovered after his arrest and none of which had music or tunes for them. Of course, there may be more, but we haven’t yet found those. They weren’t typical of Hill’s writing, which is generally focused on labor and political issues. But you can find some of this same sentiment in his letters, so it clearly was a key component of who Joe Hill was.

Frankly, I think historians and musicians have missed the boat in not addressing this romantic impulse. I suppose it seems counter to our image of the left-wing radical. But hell—I’d rather hang out with a person with strong romantic tendencies and a left-wing leaning personality, than some dour old sourpuss like Marx or Lenin, wouldn’t you? I also think within the IWW there was a strong sense of romance about the world. This can be found clearly in Wobbly writers like Haywire Mac or Ralph Chaplin. Some of this could be channeled toward a utopian impulse, as in the classic IWW song “Big Rock Candy Mountain.”

Hill just gave it a more personal twist. Why shouldn’t he want to fall in love and be carried away for a while in the reverie of romance? Don’t we all? Here’s a guy who went to work at age nine, contracted tuberculosis, went on the tramp to survive and worked an endless stream of low-paying jobs. Why not dream of taking flight above this dreary earth with your gal and soar above the troubles below? Sounds like fun to me.

What is it about Hill that makes his legacy resonate so widely?

Obviously, the injustice of his arrest, trial, and execution continues to resonate, especially when a day doesn’t pass without some prisoner being released from prison after new evidence or DNA tests exonerated him or her.

Beyond that obvious point, I think there are many people who hear his songs and immediately sense that the issues raised by Hill and other Wobbly bards remain important to our national discussion, including decent wages and working conditions, immigrant rights, discrimination based on race, the oppression of women, the right to form a union and the right to free speech.

I have to admit, however, that I’m often bewildered by conservative labor leaders in the USA who pull out Hill’s legacy when it’s convenient and make positive comments about him. If he were around today, they’d throw him out of their conventions in a minute.

I also think there’s considerable appeal to Hill’s personal demeanor throughout the trial. He died a heroic, noble death—something few people can claim for their lives. He gave his life for the cause, and his trial and execution played out in the international media of the day. He’s a romantic character of the type that is more common in early movies than in reality.




Image by Carlos Latuff



Jonathan Pollard, a convicted spy and traitor to his country of birth was released from prison today … after 30 years behind bars

Pollard with his wife. (Photo: Committee for Pollard's release)

Pollard with his wife. (Photo: Committee for Pollard’s release)

Israeli spy Pollard released from US prison

NORTH CAROLINA – After 10,956 days behind bars in the US, convicted Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard left his prison in North Carolina in the early hours of Friday morning.

“The people of Israel welcome Jonathan Pollard’s release,” said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a statement released shortly after the news broke.

Full report HERE


The ENTIRE nation of Palestine remains incarcerated for over 67 years for crimes not committed….




 Darkness Falls Across Paris Image by Carlos Latuff

Darkness Falls Across Paris
Image by Carlos Latuff

Prepared by Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD


The manufactured hysteria about the bombing in Paris will expand weapons
manufacturing and sales around western countries. Arms manufacturer stocks
are already booming and the Zionists and neoconservatives who own and run
these companies will get even richer. Liberty and democracy will suffer as
new freedom-restricting laws are passed using manufactured fear (like in
the US after September 11, 2001). Politicians like Netanyahu and Holland
enjoy this and consolidate their grip on power. Common people pay the
price. Israeli authorities took the opportunity of this manufactured mass
hysteria to ban the moderate Islamic movement and to jail its popular
leader Raed Salah (a most kind and gentle person). Seventeen civil society
organizations working on areas ranging from health to empowerment to
education were closed by the apartheid regime. Civil society organizations
and political movements of various political and religious affiliations in
1948 areas (including leadership of the Arab communities inside “Israel”)
were furious and declared a strike Thursday. The cynical racist Israeli
policies times to take advantage of tragedies elsewhere indeed promote
extremism and fundamentalism and if there is not enough extremist or
fundamentalist groups, the Western and Israeli spy agencies create them
(false flag operations are very common). Only a highly educated public can
challenge this new globalized system of terror-racism-militarization
leading to more of the same.

The best way for Americans to defeat the Islamic state is to end support
for Jewish nationalism  SEE

Outlawing the northern branch of the Islamic Movement is yet another
McCarthyist step by the Israeli state. But if anyone thinks this will bring
an end to the movement, they are dead wrong. SEE

Quotable Quotes

'Today, in a world convulsed by violence and unbelievable brutality the
lines between 'us' and 'the terrorists' have been completely blurred… We
don't have to choose between Imperialism and Terrorism, we have to choose
what form of resistance will rid us of both. What shall we choose? Violence
or non violence? …We have to choose knowing that when we are violent to our
enemies, we do violence to ourselves. When we brutalize others, we
brutalize ourselves. And eventually we run the risk of becoming our
oppressors'. Arundhati Roy

"To solve our problems, then, we certainly need to learn, but what we need
to learn is not so much new knowledge as new actions- new, more
cooperative, wiser ways of living.  Above all we need to learn how to
resolve our conflicts in more just, humane, and nationally cooperative
ways." Nicholas Maxwell, Wanted: a new way of thinking, in New Scientist 14
May 1987 (author of "From knowledge to Wisdom")

"Most of my family came from Poland and many of my relatives were killed in
the death camps during the Holocaust. When I walk in what was left from the
Warsaw Ghetto I can’t stop thinking about the people of Gaza who are not
only locked in an open air prison but are also being bombarded by fighter
jets, attack helicopters and drones, flown by people whom I used to serve
with. I am also thinking about the delegations of young Israelis that are
coming to see the history of our people but also are subjected to
militaristic and nationalistic brainwashing on a daily basis ". Yonatan
Shapira former Israeli Air Force captain and now refusnik and BDS activist
"All oppression creates a state of war.” ~Simone de Beauvoir

"Is there any man, is there any woman, let me say any child here, that does
not know that the seed of war in the modern world is industrial and
commercial rivalry?" Former US President Woodrow Wilson, 1919

"Individuals have international duties which transcend the national
obligations of obedience, therefore [individual citizens] have the duty to
violate domestic laws to prevent crimes against peace and humanity from
occurring." Nuremberg War Crime Tribunal, 1950

"The efficiency of the truly national leader consists mainly of preventing
the people's attention from becoming divided, and of always concentrating
it on a single enemy." Adolp Hitler, 'Mein Kampf' 1924

"First, they came for the Communists, and I did not speak out because I was
not a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not
speak out because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews,
and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me, and
there was no one left to speak for me." Pastor Martin Niemoller, who was
arrested by the Nazis in 1937

"I came to America because of the great, great freedom which I heard
existed in this country. I made a mistake in selecting America as a land of
freedom, a mistake I cannot repair in the balance of my lifetime." Albert
Einstein, 1947

"One hundred nations in the UN have not agreed with us on just about
everything that's come before them, where we're involved, and it didn't
upset my breakfast at all." Ronald Reagan, former US President, basking in
the triumph that was the US invasion of Grenada, 1983

"Britain has been a major force in world affairs for several centuries. No
British Patriot should be willing to give up that status." Tony Blair,
British Prime Minister, 1997

"If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of
the oppressor." Archbishop Desmond Tutu

"In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act."-
Gerorge Orwell

"Action is the antidote to despair." Joan Baez

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do
nothing." Edmund Burke

"I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand" Chinese

"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to
what lies within us." Oliver Wendell Holmes

"It is innocence that is full and experience that is empty. It is innocence
that wins and experience that loses." -Charles Peguy

"This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the
night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man." –Shakespeare

And by Khalid Amayreh

Israel is world’s premier producer and generator of terror

By Khalid Amayreh in occupied Palestine

“Germany needs to respond to terror like Israel does,” the head of Germany’s internal intelligence service (BfV), Hans-Georg Maassen, reportedly said this week.

With all due respect, the German official is wrong for the following reasons.

Israel, itself a gigantic crime against humanity by any moral standard imaginable, can never be considered part of the solution for the terror epidemic now hitting many countries. The naked facts on the ground lead to the ultimate and inevitable conclusion that Israel is one of the major root causes of terror and violence in our world today.

In 1948, Jewish-Zionist gangs coming from Eastern Europe ganged up on the peaceable people of Palestine, arrogating their homeland, slaughtering their children, destroying their homes, bulldozing their villages and dispersing the bulk of Palestinians all over the world.

This gigantic crime against humanity occurred thanks to concrete military and political support by the West.

The Palestinian people, a largely pastoral people lacking the advantage of powerful international connections, have been crying out for justice ever since, but to no avail.

In 1967, Israel completed the occupation of the Palestinian homeland, claiming that some Jews had been living in the country several thousand years ago.

Israel has had nearly 50 years to accommodate the Palestinians like Germany accommodates the millions of refugees arriving in Germany, fleeing death and persecution in countries like Syria and Iraq…and also Palestine.!

But Israel chose the racist way, viewing the Palestinians as sub-humans with utterly no rights, even no humanity.

Again, the Palestinians tried every possible avenue to free themselves from the diabolical clutches of Jewish oppression but to no avail.

And when they resorted to armed struggle, because every other door was slammed against their faces, they were called “terrorists and criminals.”!

Her Maassen, what are we supposed to do to liberate our country and free our people from this evil, called Zionism, which is based on the same elements that gave Nazism its evil essence?

Nazism was based on criminal racism (the master race), Zionism is based on criminal racism as well, namely the concept of the Chosen people. This is not an abstract idea which we can dismiss as a form of philosophical illusionism.

It is rather  practiced every hour and every day on the hills of the West Bank as Palestinians are assaulted, humiliated and even killed (even burned alive) because they are not members of “the holy tribe” and don’t worship the specific deity of that tribe.

It is this sick ideology that prompted the late mentor of Shas Rabbi Ovadia Yosef to declare that non-Jews, people like me and you, were donkeys or like donkeys, whom the Almighty created in a human shape in deference to Jews in order to serve Jews.

Needless to say, this poisonous racism was by no means an unrepresentative feature of the religious Zionist mindset. The opposite is actually true.

Herr Maassen: I want to remind you of the feelings permeating throughout Germany following the Versailles Treaty following the First World War.

Though Germany was widely perceived as the aggressor, many Germans felt German honor was deeply injured by the draconian sanctions and punishments imposed by the victorious powers.

We all know the rest of the story.

Herr Maassen: Israel, ever since the first day of its establishment, has committed every conceivable crime against our people. I myself lost three uncles to Zionist barbarianism even before I was born.

In fact, terror has always been and continues to be the official or unofficial modus operandi of Israel’s policies.

This is why you can’t understand the Palestinian question in the absence of this context. The Palestinian grievances are too real and too legitimate to be swept under the carpet.

I say this because Israel continues to be the main producer and manufacturer of terror in our region and in the world at large.

Remember, Herr Maassen, those to whom evil is done, do evil in return.

Maybe doing evil, even in return is not the ideal behavior, but it is often inevitable.

Wishing you good luck in fighting and defeating terror.



Images by Carlos Latuff



Israeli Goods KILL! Boycott NOW!

Israeli Goods KILL! Boycott NOW!

Israel’s fightback begins …

War against EU settlement products labeling begins

A week after European Union’s decision to label goods produced in the settlements, Israel announces gloves are off and that it is taking steps against 16 European countries that supported the initiative.

Full report HERE


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Thank to WRH for this one

Thank to WRH for this one


The hacker collective Anonymous declared war on ISIS in a video. They threaten to track down ISIS members and to launch cyber attacks.


Meanwhile, at the offices of Charlie Hebdo, the following is to be published …

Charlie Hebdo: Screw the terrorists

The irreverent French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, whose offices were the site in January of a deadly terrorist shooting, is to publish on the cover of its new issue a cartoon referencing the coordinated terror attacks in Paris that killed at least 129 on Friday.

The cartoon shows a man merrily celebrating with champagne – which pours out of the bullet holes with which his body is riddled. “They have the weapons,” reads the caption. “Screw them. We have the champagne! (The message may deliberately echo a phrase frequently attributed to the Taliban: “You have the watches, we have the time.”)

Photo: AFP

Photo: AFP

Full report HERE

Surely these are not the ways to wage war on terror…

First, one must know who the terrorists really are

Believe it or don't!

Believe it or don’t!

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