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Greenpeace Chief Naidoo Moves Focus To Climate Change And Global Poverty

Recently on Pacifica Radio’s Democracy Now program, I heard an interview with the new Director of Greenpeace.

Kumi Naidoo, of South Africa, is the first African to lead Greenpeace since it was founded in 1971.

(Above is a picture of Mr. Naidoo. I don’t know who that young person is next to him.)

Here is the Democracy Now interview.

Here is a profile of Mr. Naidoo from the BBC.

The BBC story says Greenpeace is shifting its focus from whaling and nuclear power to issues of global poverty and climate change.

Mr. Naidoo asserts that climate change is a matter of basic justice and human rights.

Mr. Naidoo says wars take place because of resources depleted and shifted by climate change, and some are forced to become refugees because of changing conditions on the Earth.

Here is an excerpt from an article Mr. Naidoo wrote for the BBC—

“I have been an activist for the majority of my life, and my personal journey began at the age of 15 in apartheid South Africa where I was involved with the liberation struggle, eventually having to flee to the UK in 1987. After the release of Nelson Mandela, I returned to South Africa and was involved in strengthening citizen action and civil society around the world, both through Civicus – the global organisation aiming to boost citizen involvement in issues – where I served as secretary general for the past 10 years, and through the Make Poverty History campaign of which I was one of the founders in 2003….I have always personally connected the poverty movement with stewardship for the environment; and having served for the past year as chair of tcktcktck, the global campaign for climate action, it felt like a natural progression to move to Greenpeace… I see a need to bring together the poverty movement and the environmental movement as we face up to the greatest challenge of our time: climate change….Climate change is real and happening now. It already accounts for over 300,000 deaths throughout the world each year, according to the Global Humanitarian Forum. Not only that, but I am aware that time is very much against us. We must take radical action, and I believe that the work that Greenpeace does across the globe is vital in our understanding of climate change and also the actions that are needed.”

Science Daily writes that climate change could worsen poverty in developing nations.

Here is the Greenpeace USA web home.

I enjoy the article on the Greenpeace site called “Hounding Obama in Oslo.”  It is about Greenpeace in Oslo asking President Obama to take the lead on climate change as he accepts the Nobel Peace Prize.

Greenpeace merits our attention and support. This new focus on global poverty and climate change addresses some of the most pressing issues in our world.

( Below–The Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior.)

December 11, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ongoing Protests In Iran—Links To Learn More

Hundreds of thousands of supporters of opposition presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi turn out to protest the result of the election at a rally in Azadi (Freedom) Square in Tehran, June 15, 2009

Protests, such the one seen above, are continuing in Iran over the disputed outcome of the Presidential Election.

It seems that the vote was rigged.

People in Iran want more freedom. 

Here are some links to learn more about this subject. It is up to you learn about the world.   

Global Voices Online is a good resource to read about Iranian bloggers and people using Twitter in Iran to talk about what is taking place.

Here is a Los Angeles Times story about the use of technology in the Iran crisis.

Here is the most recent Amnesty International report on Iran.

Here is the BBC on the situation in Iran. There is plenty of information here about what is going on right now and background information about the situation.  

Here is Al Jazeera on the conflict in Iran.

Here is Reporters Without Borders discussing censorship in Iran since the election.

June 16, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

De Gaulle’s Great Speech Of June 18, 1940—Learning About Charles De Gaulle

File:De-gaulle-radio.jpg

June 18, 1940 is the day that General Charles De Gaullemade the speech on the BBC from London that began French resistance to Nazi occupation. It is a great speech that is still recalled in France and in all places where the great events of World War II are remembered.

(Above–De Gaulle speaking on the BBC during World War II.)

De Gaulle left France in 1940 as an exile and came back four years later to lead France.

France and De Gaulle appeared to have been defeated in 1940, but they were not defeated.

A great two-volume of De Gaulle was written by Jean Lacouture. The first volume is called De Gaulle–The Rebel, 1890-1944Here is a review of that book. The second volume is De Gaulle–The Ruler, 1945-1970.

A good one-volume biography is The Last Great Frenchman–A Life of Charles De Gaulle by Charles Williams.

De Gaulle’s war memoirs are justly well-regarded.

(Below—De Gaulle on the cover of Life Magazine in 1958.)

Here is some biographical information about Charles De Gaulle.

Here is a BBC biography of De Gaulle.

De Gaulle was neither a figure of the political left or right. His loyalty was to France and, sometimes, to the idea of putting on a grand performance on the world stage.  He was often both serious and absurd at the same time

What could have been more absurd than the notion of one lone general banished to London after the Nazi overrun of France, coming back within a few years as the political master of France?

Charles De Gaulle is a subject that merits your further study. In studying the life of De Gaulle you will learn about French history, World War II, European and Cold War politics of the 1950’s and 60’s, and the bloody battle for Algerian Independence.

You’ll also learn about fighting and winning a fight that seemed at first, in the eyes of many at the time at least, hopeless.

Here is the great speech I referenced above. It is also called the Appeal of June 18—

The leaders who, for many years, were at the head of French armies, have formed a government. This government, alleging our armies to be undone, agreed with the enemy to stop fighting. Of course, we were subdued by the mechanical, ground and air forces of the enemy. Infinitely more than their number, it was the tanks, the airplanes, the tactics of the Germans which made us retreat. It was the tanks, the airplanes, the tactics of the Germans that surprised our leaders to the point to bring them there where they are today.

But has the last word been said? Must hope disappear? Is defeat final? No! Continue reading

June 16, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Indian Election Notes & Links—Women Voters More On Target

Look how this woman voting in India is keeping her ballot private with that cardboard. They don’t have more involved screens, but they do at least have that cardboard. People all over the world value a secret ballot. 

Here is my overview of the Indian elections. Balloting began a few days ago and will extend into the middle of May. 

Al Jazeera has a series of blogger links about the Indian elections. There are nearly 130 million Muslims in India. If Indian Muslim were a nation unto themselves, they would be the tenth most populous nation in the world. (Here is a list of the 50 most populous nations in the world.)

From the Al Jazeera links, here is a blog dealing with being Islamic in India.

The BBC ran a series of articles asking Indian people what they would do if they were the Prime Minister of India. I’ll bet most of you have never pondered that question.

Here is a great story called Six Myths About Indian Elections. For example, do women vote as they are directed to do so by their husbands?

No! Women are more inclined that men to vote for parties of the left. That’s some good thinking by these women. It seems that both America and India would be better off if only women could vote.

The leader of the main opposition party, the  BJP, says there are too many folks from Bangladesh in India. What he really means is that voters who once lived in Bangladesh are likely to reject his call from extreme Indian nationalism. Immigrant bashers live all over the globe.

Global Voices has an Indian election page.  Global voices does a great job with everything they do. 

Below is a photo of a communist rally in the State of  West Bengal.  Communists hold power in this state, but may not do so well in the 2009 election.  The Communists are having trouble with rural voters in West Bengal because they are taking farm land and giving it over to a car factory and other industrial concerns. That may be the best policy, but it is not sitting well with the people losing the land. (The picture is from the Flicker page of slglanka.)

INDIA-ELECTION by slglanka.

April 20, 2009 Posted by | Politics | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment