Wednesday, February 27, 2008

FANTASY LAND: US Media

Pressure is mounting from all sides on Lev Leviev, Israeli billionaire whose empire is built on corruption, abuse, illegal practices and the blood of people from Angola to New York to Palestine.

Angolan journalist and human rights activist, Rafael Marques has documented human rights violations and the impact of diamond mining on one million people in Angola. The violations by private security firms for the mines are described as sadistic… “includes beating their victims on the buttocks, undressing them and making them circulate naked or semi-naked in public, as well as other rituals of humiliation."

In New York City, Leviev and Boymelgreen have employed underpaid, non-union workers in hazardous conditions and violated housing codes to construct luxury apartments that displace low-income and moderate-income residents in Brooklyn.

Leviev’s wealth was built while trading with the South African apartheid regime. He then went on to use the proceeds to construct an apartheid reality in the West Bank. All this from: africanpath.com:
http://www.africanpath.com/p_blogEntry.cfm?blogEntryID=3568

But to read the NY Times, one gets a different story on Leviev. Here are some quotes from a recent story entitled "The Missionary Mogul."

- Leviev has gone from impoverished immigrant to the man who broke the De Beers international diamond cartel...

- He acted with great probity...and I think he’s an example of what the head of a public company should be.

- When it comes to contributing to the Jewish people, Lev Leviev is in a class by himself...I know a lot of rich people who give money. But Leviev is on a completely different level. He’s building entire communities

Yes, illegal settlements in the West Bank but the NY Times doesn't go quite this far. Nor has it reported the recent campaign to keep Leviev diamonds off the actors during Oscar night. http://www.alternet.org/workplace/77569/

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New Jersey radio host Hal Turner is well known as one of the most vicious neo-Nazis in America, a man who routinely suggests killing his enemies.

He has written that “we need to start SHOOTING AND KILLING Mexicans as they cross the border” and argued that killing certain federal judges “may be illegal, but it wouldn’t be wrong.” In 2006, after he published an attack on New Jersey Supreme Court justices that also included several of their home addresses.

Hackers electronically confronted Turner by hacking into his E-mails and finding correspondence with an FBI agent who is apparently Turner’s handler. Then they posted an alleged July 7 E-mail to the agent in which Turner hands over a message from someone who sent in a death threat against Sen. Russ Feingold.

Could the FBI be funding right wing, hate radio? A disturbing question to say the least. But not disturbing to readers of the NY Times. They never saw the story. from Southern Poverty Law Center: http://www.splcenter.org/blog/2008/01/11/neo-nazi-threatmaker-accused-of-working-for-fbi/

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A key official has told The Nation Magazine that the Guantanamo trials are rigged from the start. According to Col. Morris Davis, former chief prosecutor for Guantánamo’s military commissions, the process has been manipulated by Administration appointees in an attempt to foreclose the possibility of acquittal.

And he offered damning evidence of the military commissions’ bias, including meetings with the Pentagon general counsel William Haynes.

"I said to him that if we come up short and there are some acquittals in our cases, it will at least validate the process...At which point, [Haynes’s] eyes got wide and he said, ‘Wait a minute, we can’t have acquittals. If we’ve been holding these guys for so long, how can we explain letting them get off? We can’t have acquittals, we’ve got to have convictions.'"

None of this will be troubling readers of the NY Times. The story didn't make the grade against all that Oscar news. http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2008/02/20/7187/

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