usa

Home/Tag: usa

Useful idiots.

Always worth remember our current shitty economic system didn’t emerge “naturally”; it was intentionally engineered, mostly by ideological dipshits all-too-eager to throw the many under the bus of the few…

2020-01-15T09:26:54+11:008th May, 2020|Tags: economics, usa|

The American institution.

When the CIA was born in 1947, it promoted torture in its first theaters, one of which was Greece. There, the agency created a Greek CIA equivalent called the KYP, which used torture to curb leftist support. After the 1953 CIA-backed coup in Iran, the United States created a secret police force for the Shah called SAVAK, which routinely tortured Iranians. Likewise, the United States sent infiltration agents from Munich into the U.S.S.R. to engage in sabotage. When the operation was infiltrated by double agents, suspects were routinely tortured. In Brazil, after the CIA overthrew leftist President João Goulart in 1964, suspected leftists were rounded up, death squads were formed, and suspects were tortured and killed on the U.S. taxpayer’s dime. In Uruguay, counterintelligence agent Philip Agee learned that one of his penetration agents in the police force was torturing a prisoner whose name Agee had inadvertently provided. The screams haunted him.

During the hunt for Ernesto “Che” Guevara in Bolivia, the CIA sent in Cuban exile-agents who tortured suspected leftist collaborators. Under Reagan, at least two Americans tortured General Ahmed Dlimi before he was killed in Morocco in 1983. In Nicaragua, the Contras routinely engaged in the torture of suspected leftists. “Rose had her breasts cut off,” went one retelling. “Then they cut into her chest and took out her heart.” In El Salvador in 1982, U.S. military advisers watched as their trainees tortured random prisoners who had been dragged from their beds in the middle of the night—and warned the trainees that having any pity was counterproductive. In 1992, Guatemala’s U.S.-trained counterinsurgents captured, tortured and murdered the leftist guerrilla Efrain Bámaca Velásquez. This became an international incident when his wife, the American lawyer Jennifer Harbury, petitioned the CIA with hunger strikes. And then, in November 2001, Libyan national Ibn Shaykh al-Libi was apprehended in Afghanistan and tortured in Egypt. Under duress, al-Libi told his torturers that Saddam Hussein was training Al Qaeda terrorists in the use of chemical weapons. This turned out not to be true. The toll? One million or so dead.

Joel Whitney on American methods.

What this article is actually about is the CIA’s long-running program of, effectively, vetting all films coming out of Hollywood. It’s specifically about The Report which, despite its on-the-nose tie-in merchandise, seems like exactly the kind of boring talking heads political thriller I would love…

Incidentally, for those of you who missed the actual findings from the Committee Study of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Detention and Interrogation Program, a.k.a. the “torture report”, it was that torture does not work. Like. At all.

2020-01-11T10:59:15+11:0026th April, 2020|Tags: cw: discussions of torture, film, politics, pop culture, usa|

Over-tonnes.

While we’re on the subject of graphs, American political parties on a left-right spectrum, as compared to similar parties in other countries.

Probably no huge surprises here—the GOP is fa-aa-ar further to the right than most other “mainstream” conservative parties, ditto historically the Democrats, though this has shifted since 2016—and probably some room to question the methodology. But interested to see on a graph, either way,

2019-08-08T08:47:11+10:0011th December, 2019|Tags: politics, usa|

Cap’America.

[T]he sad fact is that much of the world has been destroyed institutionally by what America [has done] over the last fifty years or so. Think of Latin America — savaged by CIA plots and American-backed militias. Think of parts of Asia like Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos — they paid the price for not choosing capitalism with millions of lives. Think of Africa, which was taken advantage of for decades, its resources greedily gulped down.

These regions of the world were left largely trapped by the American Century. They weren’t able to progress much, because they didn’t want to be capitalist — mostly, they wanted to be social democracies, but America wouldn’t let them be anything else, either. So there they were, shoved down again and again by the bully on the block, unable to develop the way they wanted to. The simplest example is Chile, where when a social democratic government was elected, America literally overthrew it, installed Pinochet as dictator, and looked away whistling while the death squads went to work.

umair haque on who shaped the century.

Remember that Tumblr post that was going around a while ago where it turned out that, like, a startling number of Americans don’t know just how aggressively their country overthrows foreign governments and assassinates foreign leaders? Yeah. About that…

2019-07-31T12:25:12+10:004th December, 2019|Tags: politics, usa|

Ill of the dead.

If David Koch is to be cremated, I suggest we dispense with all the fuss and bother and just drop his corpse from a helicopter into the fires now consuming the Amazon rainforest. Let him be one with his legacy.

Charles P. Pierce on legacies.

2019-08-28T09:06:38+10:0028th August, 2019|Tags: environment, politics, usa|

Orange Skull.

I didn’t think of myself as especially political compared with some of my fellow travellers, but when asked to kill a relatively anodyne reference to an Orange Skull I realised that perhaps it had been irresponsible to be playful about the dire existential threat we now live with, and I withdrew my introduction.

International fascism again looms large … and the dislocations that have followed the global economic meltdown of 2008 helped bring us to a point where the planet itself seems likely to melt down […] Armageddon seems somehow plausible and we’re all turned into helpless children scared of forces grander than we can imagine, looking for respite and answers in superheroes flying across screens in our chapel of dreams.

Art Spiegelman (re)learns that everything is political.

Timely reminder that the CEO of Marvel donates substantial sums of money to Trump, as well as functions as a political advisor, and is actively involved in censoring any criticism Marvel employees attempt to make about the regime in the name of being “apolitical”.

(Also that last line probably could do with a whole essay of unpacking all on its own because… wow. What a massive, potentially unintentional, neg against the superhero genre. I mean… I’m into it. But also… wow.)

2019-08-19T08:20:57+10:0019th August, 2019|Tags: comics, politics, pop culture, usa|
Go to Top