Economic and political analysis-Window on culture-Media criticism

Sunday, August 24, 2008

More on Georgia--Biden picked--ships arrive in Gaza

My follow up article on the Georgian affair, "Neo-cons slap a sleeping Bear," complete with analysis on the potential neo-con roots of the conflict, appears in OpEdNews.com.

I try to publish an original post here weekly, or perhaps every ten days. The length and complexity of my recent articles, those on Georgia being only one example, encourages me to submit them to various Web outlets.

I can publish them in their entirety here later, in archival form. I hope that in the meantime a link will suffice. I'm going to assume my blog readers will understand the prioritization of distributing my work.

I can see moving to shorter, and less involved entries in a more timely format here, rather than introducing essays, political analysis, and other more involved subjects. More frequent posting would help keep viewers better in touch, but I've refrained from doing so because of my low traffic and also because I find most posting formats like that extremely shallow in their commentary, and often consisting of little more than links to other sites, which can provide a good service, but add little of content.

I do think formal writing is better placed on webzines, portals, and news& opinion sites rather than a pure blog, which should impart more of personalized perspective to broad events.

I guess I'm a little reluctant to change even when its needed. My educational background may encourage me to over-formalize, which can constrict the free flow of information. With certain subject matter, like political analysis and international event coverage, I feel a strong need to support more firmly what I say.

So much of America has dumbed down and chooses to focus on the more basic instincts of the consumer nation. Many cannot understand any explanations that can't fit into a 30-second TV segment.

I started this blog in part to help educate people as to the more subtle, and less well-covered aspects of news events. I think I can impart plenty of quality content in a blog format, but really need to increase my content to keep viewers coming back.

So that trap is how badly I want to be popular, which dictates the scope and shallowness of my writing. There may be a compromise. As the raison d'etre of this blog, informing people can be achieved in great depth not only through writing, but video and photo content as well.

Of course, this blog can never stay as current as possible, unless of course I'm covering some event like the ANSWER rally last September in DC. I encourage all readers to view my video on the right with its new annotations. I also have some very good photos that I plan to post in high resolution--something high traffic sites can't afford to do.

Until the elections come and go, I think many people need to read my blog in order to gain from my accumulated knowledge and so I can impart what limited wisdom my observations can offer to my readers, who are blessed with a higher level of curiousity and want to reach beyond conventional definitions and explanations offered by the mass media. Our world is a complicated place, with very little of it easily understood or even rational.

An Obama victory would assure me that the US is at least off the wrong track, and relieve me of my political obligation to oppose the Bush regime and counteract the Right wing control over the Media, which has led to an unprecedented need for blogs like mine.

Biden Picked

I've commented that I think Biden is a good choice, but since then I've come across new information revealing his previous foreign policy decisions on Iraq. While no one in Washington is a saint, it seems the Beltway corrupts all its long-term inhabitants. (Biden does take the night train home to Wilmington, across the Chesapeake Bay.)

Why then would Obama put at risk what is arguably his greatest popular advantage over McCain: his antiwar position in Iraq? Obama has come to take unconditional support from antiwar voters for granted. He knows they must vote for him if they want the Iraqi war stopped.

Negotiating an extended deal with the Iraqis, the White House appears to be trying to shorten the occupation, which might take away some of Obama's edge on ending the war.

I hope to write some more on Obama's choice, and this blog appears to be the place for it. I'm afraid many websites are now hesitant to criticize Obama being that his lead has shrunk. I would hope that my readers would be sufficiently balanced in their understanding of the need for compromise in politics that they'd avoid voting for a protest candidate and support "the lesser of two evils," as some progressives call him.

Ships arrive in Gaza

The arrival of a pair of ships in Gaza was met by excited Palestinians.

Originally, Israel had threatened that the ships would be stopped. (See this article).

An article posted on uruknet explains that the Israelis may have sought to avoid a public relations disaster. I was surprised to see coverage of the ships' arrival in my Indiana newspaper.

The ships were very carefully guarded in ALL the harbors they visited prior to their embarkation for Gaza. Every night divers would examine the underside of the ships, concerned about the possibility of being sabotaged or having incriminating items illicitly planted.
In Cyprus, port authorities certified the cargo as containing no weapons or contraband, a process that may have encouraged their passage through the Israeli blockade.

The siege is a well-documented--at least outside the mainstream media--embargo exercised by Israel on the Gaza strip.

Israel maintains the position that it needs to control the strip for security reasons. Periodically, armed factions do fire missiles from Gaza. Yet the inhabitants of Gaza are subjected to maltreatment in Israeli custody, documented by Mohammed Omer (journalist recently tortured by the Israelis) here.

Especially cruel has been the denial of medical supplies to Gazan hospitals (see this article on the scale of the problem, and its preventability.) Gazan children are routinely apprehended and abused; violations against Special Needs children are documented here

International law and UN resolutions are violated by Israel's brutish handling of the Gaza strip, which makes the occupation illegal, even if it were conducted more humanely. See this article for more on the transgressions in Gaza.

The ships' arrival can provide very practical help in a place where it is greatly needed--Gazans are being slowly straved to death, deprived of their livelihoods and peace by ongoing Israeli military intervention. Hopefully, more ships can arrive in Gaza to bring much needed relief.

A small piece of land, Gaza has limited resources but manages to export--when the Israelis let it--flowers and agricultural products.

BBC has an article on the voyage.

For more, see also this link to Amy Goodman's DemocracyNow, which I may have linked to in an earlier post.


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