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Speakout

Speakout is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. Speakout articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

Through no fault of their own, the Puerto Rican people have suffered through decades of heartache, disappointment and having the wool pulled over their eyes. Some may believe exploitation is too strong a term to describe what has happened, but what else can you call it when millions of honest, hard-working American citizens are relegated to a permanent second-class status, suspended somewhere in the netherworld between statehood and independence?

Jun 28

What's at Stake

By Kathy Kelly, Speakout | Op-Ed

In the historic port city of Yalta, located on the Crimean Peninsula, we visited the site where Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin, in February of 1945, concluded negotiations ending World War II. These leaders and their top advisors were also present at the creation of the United Nations and other instruments of international negotiation and non-military cooperation. Tragically, the creation of the "Cold War" was underway soon after.  Reviving tensions between the United States and Russia make it seem as though the Cold War might not have ended.

Jun 27

Exploiting the Nightmare of Orlando

By Dr. James J. Zogby, Speakout | Op-Ed

We woke up last Sunday morning to news ofthe senseless slaughter of 49 innocents at a nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Because many of the victims were gay, it appeared that this had been a hate crime. It wasn't long before the killer was identified as Omar Mateen, the US-born son of an Afghan immigrant to the United States. Law enforcement officials cautioned against any rush to judgment insisting that they were still investigating "troubling aspects" of the crime. Nevertheless, as soon as politicians, pundits and the mainstream media heard the news ofthe faith ofthe perpetrator, they were off to the races.

Entire communities in the West Bank either have no access to water or have had their water supply reduced almost by half. Israel has been "waging a water war" against Palestinians, according to Palestinian Authority Prime Minister, Rami Hamdallah. The irony is that the water provided by Mekorot is actually Palestinian water, usurped from West Bank aquifers. While Israelis, including illegal West Bank settlements, use the vast majority of it, Palestinians are sold their own water back at high prices.

New details about the brutal murder of Victor Jara in the days following the September 11, 1973, military coup in Chile are finally emerging in a court of law. Pedro Barrientos Nuñez, a former army lieutenant under Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, stands accused of torturing and killings the legendary communist folk singer at Estadio Chile on September 16, 1973. The civil trial began on June 13 and is taking place in Orlando, Florida, not Santiago, Chile. But the proceedings mark an important first step in bringing the Chilean army official to account for Jara's murder.

Michael T. Klare is a well-known academic and professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College. He is the author of Resource Wars and Blood and Oil: The Dangers and Consequences of America's Growing Petroleum Dependency, along with numerous other books and articles. Klare is also a contributor to The Nation and Current History and serves on the board of the Arms Control Association. He is based in Amherst, Massachusetts.

On August 5, 2014, Patrick O'Connor wrote in the Wall Street Journal about a WSJ/NBC poll that had just been released. It was a real downer, reflecting great unease about conditions in the US based on substantial economic anxiety and overwhelming pessimism about future prospects for the nation's children. By a significant margin, the respondents placed the blame on Washington and both political parties. The primaries for both major parties this year, and numerous accompanying polls reported in the press, have demonstrated that the 2014 attitudes have not changed. But the truth is this: the responsibility primarily lies elsewhere.

One dominant narrative on the white left these days is to connect the dots from homophobia to Islamophobia. And so, after the Orlando massacre, all those seeking political expedience to advance their cause were connecting the dots between homophobia and Islamophobia. There was one big problem with this dominant narrative: It ignored thevoices of Latinos -- long subordinate voices on the white left, even as the blood from the murders winded its way in a long river tothe Senate office of Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in Miami.

Jun 23

The Struggle Against "Unification" in the Voting Booth

By Camillo Mac Bica, Speakout | News Analysis

At this point in the ethically and democratically questionable process of choosing the next president of the United States, both "major" parties are ramping up the rhetoric of fear and intimidation to impress upon a rather disillusioned citizenry the imperative of "coming together," building party unity, in the impending battle of the unlikeable and theuntrustworthy. From one side we hear, "You must vote for Hillary, she's the first woman to receive the nomination of a major political party. More importantly, anything is better than Donald Trump!" From the other side we hear, "You must vote for Donald Trump, he will make America great again.

People continue to be amazed that Sen. Bernie Sanders has been doing so well during the primaries in running as a candidate for president -- the dark horse coming up from behind and continuing to win more and more states, despite all that was done to thwart him. The media pundits are surprised because they don't understand the age divide that separates them from younger people. All the reasons given to not vote for Bernie Sanders do not apply to the younger generation. Here's why. There are four key aspects to the divide that influence how people of different generations might view socialism, Judaism, being old and having hope.

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Speakout

Speakout is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. Speakout articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

Through no fault of their own, the Puerto Rican people have suffered through decades of heartache, disappointment and having the wool pulled over their eyes. Some may believe exploitation is too strong a term to describe what has happened, but what else can you call it when millions of honest, hard-working American citizens are relegated to a permanent second-class status, suspended somewhere in the netherworld between statehood and independence?

Jun 28

What's at Stake

By Kathy Kelly, Speakout | Op-Ed

In the historic port city of Yalta, located on the Crimean Peninsula, we visited the site where Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin, in February of 1945, concluded negotiations ending World War II. These leaders and their top advisors were also present at the creation of the United Nations and other instruments of international negotiation and non-military cooperation. Tragically, the creation of the "Cold War" was underway soon after.  Reviving tensions between the United States and Russia make it seem as though the Cold War might not have ended.

Jun 27

Exploiting the Nightmare of Orlando

By Dr. James J. Zogby, Speakout | Op-Ed

We woke up last Sunday morning to news ofthe senseless slaughter of 49 innocents at a nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Because many of the victims were gay, it appeared that this had been a hate crime. It wasn't long before the killer was identified as Omar Mateen, the US-born son of an Afghan immigrant to the United States. Law enforcement officials cautioned against any rush to judgment insisting that they were still investigating "troubling aspects" of the crime. Nevertheless, as soon as politicians, pundits and the mainstream media heard the news ofthe faith ofthe perpetrator, they were off to the races.

Entire communities in the West Bank either have no access to water or have had their water supply reduced almost by half. Israel has been "waging a water war" against Palestinians, according to Palestinian Authority Prime Minister, Rami Hamdallah. The irony is that the water provided by Mekorot is actually Palestinian water, usurped from West Bank aquifers. While Israelis, including illegal West Bank settlements, use the vast majority of it, Palestinians are sold their own water back at high prices.

New details about the brutal murder of Victor Jara in the days following the September 11, 1973, military coup in Chile are finally emerging in a court of law. Pedro Barrientos Nuñez, a former army lieutenant under Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, stands accused of torturing and killings the legendary communist folk singer at Estadio Chile on September 16, 1973. The civil trial began on June 13 and is taking place in Orlando, Florida, not Santiago, Chile. But the proceedings mark an important first step in bringing the Chilean army official to account for Jara's murder.

Michael T. Klare is a well-known academic and professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College. He is the author of Resource Wars and Blood and Oil: The Dangers and Consequences of America's Growing Petroleum Dependency, along with numerous other books and articles. Klare is also a contributor to The Nation and Current History and serves on the board of the Arms Control Association. He is based in Amherst, Massachusetts.

On August 5, 2014, Patrick O'Connor wrote in the Wall Street Journal about a WSJ/NBC poll that had just been released. It was a real downer, reflecting great unease about conditions in the US based on substantial economic anxiety and overwhelming pessimism about future prospects for the nation's children. By a significant margin, the respondents placed the blame on Washington and both political parties. The primaries for both major parties this year, and numerous accompanying polls reported in the press, have demonstrated that the 2014 attitudes have not changed. But the truth is this: the responsibility primarily lies elsewhere.

One dominant narrative on the white left these days is to connect the dots from homophobia to Islamophobia. And so, after the Orlando massacre, all those seeking political expedience to advance their cause were connecting the dots between homophobia and Islamophobia. There was one big problem with this dominant narrative: It ignored thevoices of Latinos -- long subordinate voices on the white left, even as the blood from the murders winded its way in a long river tothe Senate office of Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in Miami.

Jun 23

The Struggle Against "Unification" in the Voting Booth

By Camillo Mac Bica, Speakout | News Analysis

At this point in the ethically and democratically questionable process of choosing the next president of the United States, both "major" parties are ramping up the rhetoric of fear and intimidation to impress upon a rather disillusioned citizenry the imperative of "coming together," building party unity, in the impending battle of the unlikeable and theuntrustworthy. From one side we hear, "You must vote for Hillary, she's the first woman to receive the nomination of a major political party. More importantly, anything is better than Donald Trump!" From the other side we hear, "You must vote for Donald Trump, he will make America great again.

People continue to be amazed that Sen. Bernie Sanders has been doing so well during the primaries in running as a candidate for president -- the dark horse coming up from behind and continuing to win more and more states, despite all that was done to thwart him. The media pundits are surprised because they don't understand the age divide that separates them from younger people. All the reasons given to not vote for Bernie Sanders do not apply to the younger generation. Here's why. There are four key aspects to the divide that influence how people of different generations might view socialism, Judaism, being old and having hope.