21 September 2006

21 September 2006

In this edition of TNI News you will find:

Political violence in Western and Muslim societies

The Pope’s recent quoted remarks about the inherent violence of Islam are only one example of the often stated, and extremely simplified, dichotomy between Western and Muslim political violence. Since September 2001 in particular, Western fears of violence have increasingly determined attitudes towards Islam while, conversely, the war in Iraq has stirred up fear of Western dominance in Muslim countries. Jochen Hippler argues that a change of Western policy is needed in the Middle East, alongside mutual dialogue based on the principle of equality. He also argues that governments in the region must implement extended rights and political freedoms. These positions are established by means of an extended, historical analysis of the varying structures of violence in Western and Muslim societies.

War, Repression, Terrorism
Political Violence and Civilisation in Western and Muslim Societies

A study by Jochen Hippler
Commentaries by Nasr Hamid Abu Zaid and Amr Hamzawy

Drugs and conflict in Colombia

The Sierra de la Macarena: Drugs and armed conflict in Colombia
La Sierra de la Macarena: Drogas y conflicto armado en Colombia
By Ricardo Vargas
La Sierra de la Macarena: Drogas y conflicto armado en Colombia
TNI Policy Briefing 19, September 2006
The Colombian government has re-established the aerial fumigation of coca crops in the Sierra de la Macarena National Park. In so doing, it has drawn the wrong conclusion from the ‘failure’ of manual coca eradication in the region. These operations amount to a shortsighted military strategy in place of an anti-drug policy, harming and alienating the Park’s civilian population while doing little to affect the FARC’s ‘bankroll’. The likely result, writes Ricardo Vargas, is the creation of well-fertilised territory for a prolonged armed conflict.

El proceso a los paramilitares colombianos
¿Qué hacemos con el legado de Nuremberg?

By Amira Armenta
The Colombian government is too soft on the paramilitaries. The victims buried in mass graves in San Onofre, Colombia, deserve justice, which could also help to prevent future massacres. Past crimes cannot be forgotten simply because new crimes continue to be committed, writes Armenta.

30th anniversary of the assassinations of Orlando Letelier and Ronni Karpen Moffitt

On 21 September 1976, agents of Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet detonated a car bomb that killed former Chilean diplomat and TNI director, Orlando Letelier, and Institute for Policy Studies' Development Associate, Ronni Karpen Moffitt, in Washington DC.

Events to Mark the 30th Anniversary of the Assassinations of Orlando Letelier and Ronni Karpen Moffitt
Sunday, September 17, 10-11 am
Sheridan Circle (23rd and Massachusetts Ave. NW)

Terrorism at Sheridan Circle: 30 years ago
By Saul Landau
It was only after the election of Michele Bachelet as Chilean president that the Orlando Letelier Salon was inaugurated at the Chile’s UN headquarters. Landau recounts the history of the first terrorist attack in Washington.

Ideology as façade for criminality
By Saul Landau
Landau scrutinises the history of General Pinochet’s record as a Chilean dictator, including his use of the ideology of “communist threat” to justify crimes and conceal his illegal business dealings.

Pinochet Precedent

Singapore IMF/WTO meetings

Singapore ban raises stink on Washington twins
By Praful Bidwai
Singapore’s decision to deport an Indian NGO activist on the eve of the IMF and WTO meetings raises uncomfortable questions about the professed commitment of international financial institutions to democracy and transparency, writes Bidwai.

The Crisis of Multilateralism
By Walden Bello
As one of the civil society representatives that the Singapoore government banned from attending the World Bank and IMF meeting “for security reasons”, Bello scrutinises the crisis of the two institutions. This crisis, holds Bello, could mark a break in the current multilateral system, which is chiefly concerned with ensuring the hegemony of the USA and other developed countries.

Meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement in Havana

Breathing vigour into Non-Alignment
By Praful Bidwai
The world order is still deeply skewed, iniquitous, unjust and in dire need of reform. Corporate-led globalisation has only exacerbated these injustices, making greater cooperation between Southern countries and a rejuvenated Non-Aligned Movement more urgent, writes Bidwai.

La moderada radicalidad de los No Alineados
By Mariano Aguirre
The 14th Summit of the Non-aligned movement, held in Havana, ended with a series of criticisms of the US and Israel, and a final declaration that mixes moderate comments with a re-affirmation of the principle of non-intervention in the internal affairs of the state, writes Mariano Aguirre.

Website of the 14th Summit of the Non Aligned Movement

From our network:

Why the Currency Transaction Tax is a Win/Win Scenario
By Susan George
Financial market instability is built into the system and acts as a huge tax on investment, trade and development. In response, a mechanism such as the Currency Transaction Tax is needed for stabilisation and to raise additional finances for development. Susan George explains this mechanism, arguing that it would bring considerable returns for business and ordinary people in the North and South - virtually a Win/Win situation for everyone.

Rethinking political organisation in an era of movements, war and the global market
By Hilary Wainwright
How can social movements and political parties bring about transformative political change in Europe and Latin America? Hilary Wainwright assesses the possibilities, in a wide-ranging lecture delivered as the keynote address to the XXII CLACSO General Assembly.

Bolivia: the challenges to state reform
By Isabel Moreno and Mariano Aguirre
Bolivia's indigenous, nationalist, leftist leader Evo Morales has articulated an ambitious programme of economic and constitutional reform. The dysfunctional state and divided society he has inherited present him with huge challenges, report Mariano Aguirre and Isabel Moreno.

The problem of 2008
By Boris Kagarlitsky
With the Russian presidential elections approaching in 2008, the Kremlin elite is facing up to the problem of finding Putin’s successor, writes Kagarlitsky.

The World’s True Outlaw State
By Achin Vanaik
Israel’s collective punishment of the Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank, and its war against Lebanon, proves that it is the world’s true outlaw state, says Vanaik.

The Left and the Jihad
By Fred Halliday
The left was once the principal enemy of radical Islamism. So how did old enemies become new friends? Fred Halliday reports.

Bush’s UN General Assembly speech
By Phyllis Bennis
George Bush’s speech to the UN introduced a new bipolarity by dividing the world between moderates and extremists, with the Iranian president undoubtedly placed in the second camp. These veiled threats can only serve to heighten the danger of a unilateral military move against Iran, says Phyllis Bennis.

Balochistan: some Indian views
By Praful Bidwai
The killing of a tribal leader in the Pakistani region of Balochistan, bordering Afghanistan and Iran, could well be a product of US interference, writes Bidwai.

A very special land scam
By Praful Bidwai
The Indian government’s push for a second generation of free-market “reforms” will sink its popularity. The Asian financial crisis of 1997-8 already discredited the goal of achieving full capital account convertibility, and the creation of new Special Economic Zones will uproot thousands of farmers and send land prices skyrocketing, writes Bidwai.

The great land grab
By Praful Bidwai
Huge swathes of land are being handed over to corporations in `sweetheart' deals and scams centered on Special Economic Zones, writes Bidwai.

Global War on Terrorism Leaves Region in Turmoil
By Praful Bidwai
Five years after US President George W. Bush launched his "global war on terrorism", the world has become more unsafe, more divided, more strife-prone, more paranoid and, ironically, more vulnerable to terrorism, writes Bidwai.