UN Security Council

That missile didn't come out of nowhere

Some facts about recent USA-N Korea tensions:

- Prior to the North Korean missile, Japan had just tested its M142 High-Mobility Artillery Rocket System.

- this test was related to operation Northern Viper (NV17), a US-Japan military drill exercise which took place on Hokkaido from 10-28 of August. US Marines and Japanese ground troops were involved, as well as F-16 fighters, MV-22 Osprey aircraft and military helicopters.

- Every year the USA also conducts something called the Ulchi-Freedom Guardian war games. Lasting 10 days, it involves many thousands of troops from South Korean and the USA, as well as some from Australia, and serves as a show of force and rehearsal for war with North Korea. North Korean leadership has repeatedly objected to these drills. (Australia hosts US military bases, as well as US troops, aircraft and warships).

- yesterday, Ja Song Nam, North Korea’s ambassador to the UN asked the UN Security Council for urgent talks on these military exercises. He said they were like “fuel to [an] open fire” and he pointed out that the exercises were “a provocative and aggressive joint military exercise at this critical moment of the Korean Peninsula, where the situation is just like a time bomb.”

- US trade sanctions have hit North Korea at a time when their harvest has been poor and food supplies are low. The population is suffering.

Storms (Chapter Eight)

Long update! 3000 words! Some fluff and feels, then RHODEY comes to visit! And then some angst, because that’s just what has to happen. Then some more feels because Thor is the freaking sweetest.

ADDITIONAL CHAPTERS HERE

Enjoy :)
******************

Tony ate breakfast the next morning seated firmly on Thor’s lap, content to be spoon fed, happy to just be close.

He couldn’t get over the current of electricity that seemed to travel under Thor’s skin, and couldn’t believe he had never noticed it before.

“It is brought to the surface by a sexual connection.” Thor explained, feeding Tony a small bite. “Usually it doesn’t turn into a storm, though.”

“Then why did–”

“The storm speaks for itself.” Thor said with a smile and a soft kiss to his lips. “I am very happy this morning, Anthony.”

“I’m happy too.” Tony shifted on his lap and flinched. “Sore though. Forgot about that part of things. Even though I imagine I’ve never been this sore.”

“Forgive me.” Thor looked troubled but Tony just shrugged it off with something like a wicked smile.

“I’m not complaining.”

“I have something that could help.” Thor offered after a moment, looking unsure of himself. “A soothing ointment to ease the pain.”

Tony eyes twinkled then and he shifted a little closer. “And how would that ointment be applied, exactly?”

“Well simply as one would apply any –” Thor raised an eyebrow when he saw Tony’s expression. “Anthony. You surprise me with this.”

“With what?” Tony asked innocently. “I’m curious. Is applying this ointment a two person job?”

“You are so serious most days, I suppose it catches me unawares when you are playful.” Thor admitted. “Even though I have missed your less-serious side these last few months. I am pleased that our… joining has brought it back in some measure.”

“Oh, I’m being deadly serious right now.” Tony corrected. “Is applying this ointment a two person job?”
*******************

Keep reading

2

15th SEPTEMBER 2017: Tam sorts out Brexit.

20th OCTOBER 2017: Tam deals with the Middle East peace process by barging into the UN Security Council shouting “Haw, whit’s the fucken Hampden Roar here by the way?”

30th NOVEMBER 2017: North Korea’s latest missile launch condemned in strong terms by Tam, who declares leader Kim Jong-un “a total fanny”.

JANUARY 5th 2018: World Peace declared as Tam takes everyone up the dancin’ and gets chips & cheese.

JANUARY 6th 2018: Crisis as Tam drops the nut on a cheeky bastard acting the big man. Old Firm game looms.

2019 - 2076: Irn Bru wars.

1950

America: Great. Another day of being blocked by the Soviet Union’s vetoing power–

America: Where is he?

England: He’s boycotting the security council meetings. something about China’s representation.

America: So wait… He can’t veto anything

France: No, he is not here.

America: \(>o<)/ We should open with an intervention in South Korea–

*Not long after this the Soviet Union ended it’s boycott*

White Widow - Part 2

PART 1 | PART 2 | PART 3 | PART 4 | PART 5 | PART 6 | PART 7 | PART 8 | PART 9 (Smut)| PART 10 (Final)

Character Pairing: Bucky x Reader

Summary: When the reader loses her fiance to Hydra, she is sent to the Avengers compound for her protection. Forced to share the guest house with the famous assassin, the Winter Soldier, she must learn to cope with her loss and her new roommate. All this, while trying to solve the mystery of why Hydra is now hunting her.

Warnings: Nightmares, depression

Characters this chapter: Steve Rogers, Sharon Carter, Bucky Barnes, Tony Stark

A/N: Thank everybody for the feedback! Like I said, I haven’t written anything in 10ish years and I’ve never posted a fic on Tumblr before, so I really appriciate all the help. I’m already getting requests for tags, so shoot me an ask if you want tagged.

The Avengers Compound looked impressive from the sky. Two people stood on the ground to greet us as our helicopter landed.

“Captain” Tony greeted the man with a handshake

“And Sharon!” he pulled the woman in for a hug “I didn’t know you’d be joining us”

“Just for a few days, Tony. I have to head back to Berlin soon.” She smiled

“Ms. Y/N, this is Agent Carter, FBI. This is Captain Steve Rogers, he’ll be showing you around and getting you settled today.”

I shook both their hands, trying not to be star struck. It was one thing to share a helicopter ride with the always eccentric Iron Man. But to meet Captain America, the hero I’d seen on the news so many times, it made me blush a little.

“I’m terribly sorry for your loss miss” He looked down at me, sullen.

“Thank you” I replied

“I’m going to head off to my office, see if Vision was able to get any intel on those weapons dealers in Egypt…” Tony trailed off  “You kids have fun.”

“Let’s begin the tour?” Steve gestured towards the enormous building behind him

Keep reading

cnn.com
What Donald Trump's "joke" about Nikki Haley reveals about him
At a lunch at the White House on Monday with more than a dozen UN ambassadors, President Trump poked some fun at his own UN Ambassador Nikki Haley.
By Analysis by Chris Cillizza, CNN Editor-at-large

At a lunch at the White House on Monday with more than a dozen UN ambassadors, President Trump poked some fun at his own UN Ambassador Nikki Haley.

In front of the UN Security Council, President Donald Trump jokingly says… Ambassador Nikki Haley “can easily be replaced.”

“Does everybody like Nikki?” Trump asked the assembled ambassadors as Haley sat by his side. Amid laughter Trump added: “Otherwise, she can easily be replaced."Cue awkward laughter.

Now, Trump was joking. And everyone in the room – including Haley – understood that. But, that doesn’t mean he was entirely kidding.

Two things we know about Trump suggest that beneath his attempt at humor was a hard-edged point.First, we know he likes to keep the people working for him on their toes. Never being absolutely certain where you stand in the Trump orbit is one of his tried and true management techniques. He plays favorites, pits people against one another and listens to different people on different days without any seeming rhyme or reason.Witness White House chief strategist Steve Bannon’s arc since he came to Washington. Bannon seemed to be Trump’s closest and most trusted adviser in the earlier days of the administration – pushing Trump successfully on the travel ban and ramping up talk of the "deconstruction of the administrative state.” But then Bannon fell into disfavor, with Trump offering a public condemnation of Bannon as “a guy who works for me

"This "joke” about Haley certainly seems to be in keeping with Trump’s long-standing practice of keeping his people guessing.

The accords were always a disaster in the making

I can’t stop chewing over this huge plot hole and I think until I write this down, I won’t stop, so even though I know no one is going to read this, I have to put it down in words. Ever since the first trailer for Captain America: Civil War, I’ve had this huge WHAT THE FUCK reaction that I’ve been holding on to, hoping that the movie would somehow make the UN sanctioned accords make sense to me, or at the very least, the side objecting to them would point out what a huge, huge mistake this would be with actual, you know, facts. That exist. In the world. And I was really stunned that at no point did anyone point out what a disaster they could be, because of what an actualfax disaster the UN has often been at oversight and peacekeeping. 

It would have taken less than ten minutes for them to dig up some real-world examples of disastrous policies that led to the slaughter of thousands of innocent people, and given those arguments to someone on the team as a basis for their suspicion of what the accords intended to do. But I’m equally baffled by why they had Tony and Rhodey coming out in favor of the accords and the UN and Thunderbolt Ross, for god’s sake, when they would know these things because of the nature of their jobs, and Vision because he has access to all that information in the databanks.

If you’re not familiar with the giant shitstorm that is often UN peacekeeping work and human rights oversight, here are a couple of Greatest Hits for you–and these are just a few that have happened within Tony’s and Rhodey’s lifetime. 

Keep reading

GAZA CITY : A displaced Palestinian from the Shejaiya neighborhood in the Gaza Strip sits on a bench at the UN school where he and others have taken refuge after fleeing heavy fighting in their area, on July 21, 2014. The UN Security Council called for an “immediate ceasefire” as Israel pressed on with a blistering assault on Gaza taking the Palestinian death toll above 500. AFP PHOTO/MARCO LONGARI

anonymous asked:

Fifty years ago today, five Arab armies surrounded Israel with 950 combat aircraft, 2500 tanks, and 550000 troops. The goal? Ending Israel. The Arab leaders of Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, and Lebanon minced no words "Our goal is clear--to wipe Israel off the face of the map. Seven days later, w/o help from any other nation on earth, Israel stood victorious. Against all odds, Israel utterly demolished its foes in days.

By ‘Against all odds’ you mean ‘as a result outright aggression that took neighbouring states completely by surprise’. And with a military provided by the french and british. 

And before you cite a ‘pre-emptive strike’ (in other words unjustified aggression), Israeli officials have acknowledged that it knew full well that Egypt had no intention to move against Israel - one of these being Yitzhak Rabin. According to General Matityahu Peled the idea of Israel’s physical struggle for existence - or, as you put it, surrounding countries wanting to ‘end Israel’ - was ‘only a bluff born and developed after the war’. And, according the Menachem Begin, who was a member of the cabinet at the time, “ln June 1967, we again had a choice. The Egyptian Army concentrations in the Sinai approaches do not prove that Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be honest with ourselves. We decided to attack him.“

In fact a lot of the military movements in the arab world were a result of Israel’s intention to invade Syria - which it did during the 6 day war. There was no intention of ‘ending Israel’, they were positioning their military defensively and the record shows that Israel was fully aware that this was their intention. 

Reports indicate that the dimensions of the Israel attack are so wide that no one can doubt the premeditated nature of this aggression, Israelis are attacking, all of a sudden and simultaneously, the Gaza strip, Sinai, Cairo airports, and Sharm el Sheikh, together with other places. And yet we have just been told that the Israelis did not initiate any action and that they were in fact attacked by us. 

These Israel manoeuvres are not new. The happenings of the early hours of the day indicate beyond doubt that the Israelis have, as usual, engineered and planned this aggression of today, 

- UN Security Council 1347th Meeting

By ‘the goal’ you actually mean ‘Israel’s goal to seize the Sinai, Gaza, the West Bank , East Jerusalem and Golan Heights’. That’s not self-defence. That’s expansion and occupation. 

If you are proud of this form of international aggression then we have fundamentally different ethical principles.

buzzfeed.com
BREAKING: Trump Promises "Fire And Fury" For North Korea
The threat came hours after a report said the country can miniaturize a nuclear warhead
By Megha Rajagopalan

President Donald Trump issued a colorful threat to North Korea on Tuesday, saying the country would be “met with fire and fury like the world has never seen” if it continued threatening the United States.

“North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States,” said Trump, who is on vacation this week and spoke from his New Jersey golf course. “They have been very threatening beyond a normal statement.”

Trump made the remarks hours after a Washington Post report cited an assessment by the Defense Intelligence Agency concluding Pyongyang had miniaturized a nuclear warhead that could be delivered by its missiles. It’s the latest indication of North Korea’s growing nuclear capabilities. In recent months, North Korea has conducted a series of missile tests that have incensed the White House.

The UN Security Council agreed on Saturday to put in place a new set of economic sanctions targeting key sectors including coal and iron as well as seafood exports and North Korean laborers overseas, in hopes of hitting Pyongyang’s billions of dollars of export revenue. Those sanctions came on the heels of two intercontinental ballistic missile tests North Korea carried out in July.

anonymous asked:

I am failing to see how an occupying force can be "the victim". What is your reasoning?

Israel is not a “victim” and neither are the Palestinians. Israel does face an overwhelming amount of terrorism, something you clearly have no experience with. Don’t play the David and Goliath game on this blog. It’s that kind of mentality that keeps people from actually trying to solve this conflict. 

Furthermore, if you believe Israel is occupying something. Please tell me whose land it is occupying and when they had a country there. 

Because technically Judea and Samaria were not part of any Palestinian state. They were under Jordan, which occupied it before Israel gained it in a war it didn’t start and won. So let me see if I understand this. Jordan invading and controlling the area from 1949-1967 was not occupation. But Israel is…? And the difference is that one was Arab and one was Jewish? Or more importantly how no one cared about the area or establishing a Palestinian state, until Israel got it. Now all of a sudden it’s occupation.

From Mitchell Bard’s book Myth vs Fact

Occupation typically refers to foreign control of an area that was under the previous sovereignty of another state. In the case of the West Bank, there was no legitimate sovereign because the territory had been illegally occupied by Jordan from 1948 to 1967. Only two countries—Britain and Pakistan—recognized Jordan’s action. The Palestinians never demanded an end to Jordanian occupation and the creation of a Palestinian state.

It is also necessary to distinguish the acquisition of territory in a war of conquest as opposed to a war of self-defense. A nation that attacks another and then retains the territory it conquers is an occupier. One that gains territory in the course of defending itself is not in the same category. This is the situation with Israel, which specifically told King Hussein that if Jordan stayed out of the 1967 War, Israel would not fight against him. Hussein ignored the warning and attacked Israel. While fending off the assault, and driving out the invading Jordanian troops, Israel came to control the West Bank.By rejecting Arab demands that Israel be required to withdraw from all the territories won in 1967, UN Security Council Resolution 242acknowledged that Israel was entitled to claim at least part of these lands for new defensible borders.Since Oslo, the case for tagging Israel as an occupying power has been further weakened by the fact that Israel transferred virtually all civilian authority in the West Bank to the Palestinian Authority. Israel retained the power to control its own external security and that of its citizens, but 98 percent of the Palestinian population in the West Bank, and 100 percent in Gaza, came under the PA’s authority.The extent to which Israel has been forced to maintain a military presence in the territories has been governed by the Palestinians’ unwillingness to end violence against Israel. The only way to resolve the dispute over the territories is for the Palestinians to negotiate a final settlement. Until now, the intransigence of the Palestinian Authority’s leadership has prevented the resumption of peace talks, which offer the only route to an agreement that will lead to a sustainable future for Israelis and Palestinians alike

Is that the best you got? Or are you one of those people who thinks all of Israel was part of some country that never existed called Palestine?

2

STEGGY AU: Special Relationship

It all started with the late night fondue. Well, it actually started with Prime Minister Carter’s first official visit to the United States, where the two heads of government instantly developed an easy camaraderie. They laughed about stuffy heads of state and commiserated about irredeemable elected officials and the difficulties of being in government. Pretty soon President Rogers and Prime Minister Carter became Steve and Peggy, and official meetings became friendly chats, and serious phone calls became quick texts about day-to-day excitements and drudgeries. Carter and Rogers embraced the special relationship between their two countries (and themselves).

The late night fondue started as a celebration at the end of a very trying NATO summit. The participants found themselves at an upscale fondue restaurant known for its delicious cheese and utmost discretion. They partied long into the night, but one by one, the various NATO members and their staffs left the restaurant, until only Carter and Rogers remained. The lighting was low, the music was soft, and the company was perfect. The rest of the night and the early morning was perfect too, although that remained top secret.

The late night fondue–Chief of Staff James Barnes’ term of choice to describe their relationship–started with that late-night fondue. It became hurried encounters in empty conference rooms at the G7 summit in Paris, a shared hotel room at the Climate Change conference in Vienna, and an early morning meeting before the peace talks with Russia.  It became friendly competitions in their off hours, shared jokes about their consistent lack of punctuality, and some more fondue–both literal and figurative.

They were the best-kept secret in international affairs. One night, in the midst of an emergency session of the UN Security Council, Rogers pulled Carter into an empty room and began to twirl her around to an unidentifiable music source (his speechwriter Thor Odinson). As the music shifted to something slower, she settled her head in his broad shoulder and whispered, “Do you ever get tired of the secrecy and sneaking around?” Rogers hummed in response, but made no move to stop dancing. Instead, he pulled her closer and whispered right back, “Someday, when all this is over, we will get our dance in public. I promise.” She smiled into his suit jacket as he added, “I hope you’ll be giving me lessons before then though. I’d hate to step on your feet in front of all those people." 

It took four years, three hard won treaties, two assassination attempts, and a war. But at the end of Rogers’ final term, at the Inauguration Ball of their friend Sam Wilson–the former Vice President–they finally had their dance, to thunderous applause. (previous)

hopelesshoemantic  asked:

Excuse my ignorance, but why do you not think president Obama is doing an okay job? It's my understanding that he tried to do everything he set out to do but he kept being voted against by the house and Senate.

You should definitely check out my Obama tag, but here are a few reasons why Obama is no friend to the working class or oppressed peoples, not here and not anywhere: 

On Immigration

  • ICE has deported over a million people since 2009. Deportation rates are rising every year, and are currently approaching 400,000. (ACLU 8/18/11) Despite the fact that unauthorized immigration rates are sinking (Pew 9/1/10), Border Patrol has more agents than it’s ever had before (White House 5/2011) and ICE’s budget has risen to nearly $6 billion. Despite a stated policy of targeting high-level criminals, the majority of those deported under ICE’s “Secure Communities” program have only misdemeanor convictions or no conviction at all. (Deportation Nation 5/25/11)
  • The Department of Homeland Security’s has rescinded the Secure Communities agreement memos with various jurisdictions and announced that compliance with the program is mandatory, despite legislation to the contrary. (IPC 11/29/11Restore Fairness 8/8/11)
  • The vast majority of ICE detainees have no access to counsel. (ABA 2/2010) Half of ICE detainees are kept in private prisons (ACLU 11/1/11); detainees in both private and public detention centers are subject to sexual abuse (ACLU), physical abuse and lack of medical care (ACLU 10/24/11), lack of access to counsel (ACLU 11/17/11ABA 2/2010)
  • DHS has denied people entry into the United States due to mental illness; one Canadian was turned away at the border due to a suicide attempt five years prior. (CBC 9/9/11)
  • At least 5,100 children are in foster care in the United States because their parents were deported. If current deportation trends continue, this number could rise to 15,000 in the next five years. (ARC 11/2011Frontline 11/3/11)

On Israel/Palestine

  • Despite his stated support for a two-state solution, Obama has opposed Palestine’s UN bid for statehood, and has declared that, if the issue is brought to the UN Security Council, the United States will veto it. (Guardian 9/21/11). When Palestine was given membership in UNESCO, the United States canceled UNESCO funding. (Reuters 11/2/11) Similarly, though Obama makes public statements deriding the continued advance of Israeli settlements in Palestinian territory, the US vetoed a UN resolution (sponsored by 130 nations, including all other members of the Security Council) opposing the settlements. (Christian Science Monitor 2/18/11)
  • The Obama administration dropped its attempts to persuade Israel to halt construction of settlements in Palestinian territory and allowed the moratorium on construction to expire, a serious problem not just morally but diplomatically, as Palestinian authorities have refused to engage in direct talks as long as Israel was building on lands seized from Palestine in 1967. (Reuters via MSNBCAP via Huffington Post, both 12/7/10)

On Military and Foreign Policy (Imperialism)

  • Obama’s State Department secretly directed its diplomats to spy on the United Nations, directing them to uncover computer passwords, credit card numbers, and biometric data. Similar directives ordered embassy staff in oil-rich African countries to conduct military surveillance and embassy staff in the Middle East to seek out travel plans of leaders in the Palestinian Authority. (Guardian 11/28/10)
  • Under the Obama administration, use of unmanned drones in military raids has severely increased—of the 309 known strikes, all but 52 took place after Obama took office. The exact number of people killed is not known (publicly at least), but the Bureau of Investigative Journalism places estimates between 2,373 and 2,997; at least 391 and possibly as many as 780 were civilians, including 175 children. These figures are based largely on media reports; in most cases, the actual identities of the victims are unknown, and as such there is the real possibility that a large number of “alleged militants” are actually civilians. (BIJ 8/10/11) The bulk of drone attacks have been in Pakistan, but the U.S. has also used the weapons in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Libya, and Somalia. (Independent 7/1/11) A State Department legal adviser said it was “the considered view of this administration” that American drone attacks abroad constitute “self-defense”. (Wired 3/26/10)
  • In September, Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen, was killed in a targeted assassination on Barack Obama’s explicit orders due to alleged al-Qaeda ties. (NYT 10/1/11) Obama’s Justice Department argued in court, after Awlaki was placed on the list but long before he was killed, that the President has the authority to order the assassination of American citizens deemed a threat without a trial or even charges, and that this authority is not subject to judicial review. (ACLU 11/8/10)
  • After the scheduled military pullout from Iraq at the end of the year, the State Department will continue to employ 5,000 private security contractors in the country. (ABC 10/21/11), including the controversial company DynCorp (NPR 12/27/11)
  • During the “limited humanitarian intervention” (Yahoo 3/23/11) in Libya, the U.S. dropped dozens of bombs on the nation, even after the rebels succeeded in taking the capital. (Wired 10/20/11) American-backed anti-Gaddafi forces have been implicated in numerous human rights abuses, including indiscriminate arrests of sub-Saharan African nationals, torture and sexual assault of detainees (Amnesty International 10/2011), and a mass execution of Gadaffi loyalists at a hotel in Sirte (Human Rights Watch 10/23/11); there are reports that black Libyans are being lynched by rebel forces. (Liberation 8/30/11) The National Transitional Council’s interim leader announced a desire to return to traditional law and repeal the nation’s divorce laws. (Radio Netherlands 10/24/11)
  • Obama has resumed the war in Somalia. In addition to the aforementioned drone strikes, the U.S. is giving millions of dollars to Somali troops described by reporters as “ineffective”. The U.S. is also giving support to Ugandan, Kenyan, and Ethiopian military troops to fight in Somalia. (Washington Post 11/24/11)
  • In 2009, the United States used a cluster bomb against an alleged al-Qaeda training camp; the attack is estimated to have killed 41 civilians. (Amnesty International 6/4/10) The United States is one of few industrialized nations not to have signed the Convention on Cluster Munitions. (CCM) The Obama administration has continued Bush’s refusal to sign the Mine Ban Treaty. (AP via MSNBC 11/24/09)
  • The Obama administration shipped arms to Saudi Arabia to quell a rebellion in North Yemen, while publicly claiming to be uninvolved. (Salon 12/9/10) When larger masses of Yemenis began protesting the long-standing rule of President Ali Abdullah Saleh, the Obama administration supported Saleh; after it became clear that the movement against Saleh was too broad, the White House became involved in the negotiations to remove Saleh peacefully (Reuters 4/4/11), all while continuing its drone war against alleged Yemeni terrorists. (NYT 6/9/11) When Saleh finally stepped down, Obama praised the transfer of power as “a new beginning” (White House 11/23/11), despite continued protests in the country against the immunity from prosecution Saleh received in the power transfer agreement. (Guardian 11/23/11)
  • The Obama administration revived a Rumsfeld plan to equip ICBMs with conventional warheads—a plan that even the Bush administration eventually scrapped because it was too dangerous. (NYTWired, 4/23/10)
  • In 2010, the State Department hired Xe services, better known as Blackwater, to provide security at new U.S. consulates in Afghanistan. (Washington Post 6/21/10) Nearly simultaneously, Xe was given a contract to provide security at CIA bases in Afghanistan and other undisclosed countries. (Washington Post 6/23/10)
  • The Department of Defense sold $60 billion worth of arms to Saudi Arabia in 2010, including 84 F-15s, 190 helicopters, and massive amounts of bombs and missiles. (Washington Times 11/19/10)
  • The United States has expanded its clandestine presence in Middle East and nearby countries, friend and foe, such as Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Somalia. This new order makes it clear that such operations are intended to be long-term. (NYT 5/24/10)
  • The Obama administration worked out an agreement with Afghanistan that would keep U.S. troops in the country until 2024. (Telegraph 8/19/11)
  • According to a CIA lawyer involved in the Bush-Obama transition, the incoming administration sought to do away with the torture program but keep virtually every other aspect of Bush’s CIA programs. (Frontline via Raw Story 9/1/11)

On Domestic Spying, Black Site Prisons, and Civil Liberties

  • In an interview on America’s Most Wanted, President Obama expressed support for a national database of DNA samples taken from arrestees, regardless of whether they are convicted, equivocating the practice with taking mugshots. (LA Times 4/9/10)
  • In a statement coinciding with the release of Bush-era memos from the Office of Legal Counsel regarding torture programs, Obama promised that agents who had been involved in torture would not be prosecuted, saying “This is a time for reflection, not retribution.” (White House 4/16/09) The administration has also declined to prosecute CIA officials who destroyed dozens of videos of agents torturing suspected terrorists. (NYT 11/9/10) When a Spanish human rights group called for Spain’s National Court to prosecute several Bush officials including Alberto Gonzales and John Yoo, Obama joined with Republican officials in secretly pressuring Spain to circumvent the Spanish legal system and drop the charges. (Mother Jones 12/1/10)
  • Despite campaign promises to end the Bush administration’s “extraordinary rendition” program, whereby individuals were kidnapped without charges, taken to secret locations on foreign soil, and tortured, the Obama administration has largely kept the program in place, turning prisoners over to foreign countries and relying on “assurances” from those nations that the prisoners will not be tortured. (LA Times 2/1/09NYT 8/24/09Pro Publica 9/6/11) The administration has consistently invoked “state secrets” privileges and national security concerns to deny rendition survivors any hope of legal justice. (ACLU 11/15/11)
  • Similarly, Obama’s DOJ has sought to block litigation against the NSA over warrantless wiretapping, continuing the Bush administration’s invoking of “state secrets” (a practice which Obama himself opposed on the campaign trail). Obama’s administration, however, has gone beyond Bush’s argument to a disturbing new level, with the unprecedented claim that the federal government is categorically immune from litigation regarding illegal spying. (Salon 4/6/09EFF 4/7/09)
  • Obama’s DOJ has also argued to the Supreme Court that the government should be able to attach GPS devices to suspects’ cars without warrants. (Wired 6/27/11)
  • The Obama administration denied UN investigators access to Guantanamo prisoners and information on secret prisons. (Washington Post 7/23/09)
  • A terrorism strategy released by the White House recommends increasing the monitoring of “extremism” on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. (CNET 8/3/11) The Justice Department is seeking to require ISP’s and cell phone companies to hold on to records for significant periods of time to aid law enforcement. (Raw Story 1/25/11)
  • Obama’s Department of Justice has issued new guidelines on the use of Miranda warnings in interrogation of terrorism suspects, but has refused to make these guidelines public, further clouding an already murky subject. (Salon 1/19/11)
  • The Department of Defense released a list of names of prisoners at the Bagram prison, where allegations of torture and abuse have been raised for years. However, the list did not contain such important information as length of detention, location of capture, or national origin (BBC 1/16/10), information which the Obama administration has fought hard to keep secret. (TPR 10/26/10) The administration has opened a second prison at Bagram, referred to by former inmates as “Tor Jail” or “Black Jail”; the DoD refuses to acknowledge that this prison even exists. (BBC 4/15/105/11/10)
  • The Pentagon has stated that it has the right to react to hackers with military force “when warranted.” (Reuters 11/15/11)
  • In a memo to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, President Obama personally waived portions of a Bush-era law that forbade providing military assistance to countries known to recruit child soldiers, in order to provide military aid to Chad, Sudan, Yemen, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. (Foreign Policy 10/26/10White House 10/25/10)
  • Obama’s FBI has raided homes and offices of anti-war activists and labor organizers on pretexts of connections to “foreign terrorist organizations.” (Democracy Now 9/27/10Washington Post 6/13/11)
  • President Obama refused to release photos depicting abuse against detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan in violation of a Freedom of Information Act request, claiming that doing so would inflame terrorists against the United States. (ABC 5/13/09)
  • Obama declared that some Guantanamo detainees would be held indefinitely without trial, claiming that such prisoners “cannot be prosecuted for past crimes, but … nonetheless pose a threat to the security of the United States.” (Washington Post 5/22/09) The following year, his Justice Department argued in court that a ruling requiring the government to give Guantanamo prisoners their habeas corpus rights did not apply to prisoners at Bagram; a District Court judge rejected this argument, but an appeals court reversed the ruling, essentially granting the DOD power to imprison people indefinitely so long as the prison is in a war zone. (Salon 5/21/10)
  • Part of Obama’s campaign was focused on curtailing the more egregious portions of the PATRIOT Act, but he signed a one-year extension of the act in 2010 and a four-year extension in 2011, neither with any changes. (Christian Science Monitor 3/1/10Huffington Post 5/27/11)
  • An FBI policy made public after an FOIA request reveals that the agency keeps people on a terrorism watch list even if they have been cleared of any charges. (NYT 9/27/11)
  • TSA is performing unannounced security screenings, including pat-downs, not just at airports but train stations, ferries, and bus terminals. They have begun working in tandem with ICE, predictably targeting people of color, through the “VIPR” program (Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response). (Mother Jones 6/20/11) In San Diego, a joint TSA-ICE Trolley raid led to 21 arrests, including the deportation of three teenagers on their way to school. (Union-Tribune 5/23/09)

On Law Enforcement

  • In 2009, the ATF began a secret program called “Operation Fast and Furious” in which illegal firearms were deliberately allowed to fall into the hands of drug cartel members in Mexico in an attempt to reach the higher members of the cartels. The program was kept secret from both the American public and the Mexican government. A gun purchased in the program killed a Border Patrol officer in late 2010. U.S. attorneys denied the rumors of the program in the announcement of a series of arrests, but it was eventually made public by a disgruntled ATF officer who went to Congress. (Washington Post 7/25/11) Attorney General Eric Holder denied knowledge of the program, but had been receiving regular briefings on the subject since at least July of 2010. (CBS 10/3/11)
  • The DEA is involved in laundering millions of dollars in drug cartel money to further their investigation of cartel leaders; the practice is understandably controversial, and has seen little apparent success. (NYT 12/3/11)

On Wall Street and Labor (Class Struggle)

  • Obama has claimed that he “understand[s] the frustration” fueling the Occupy Wall Street movement (ABC 10/10/11), and the Democratic Party has made advances toward appropriating the movement. (NYT 10/10/11) Obama’s tepid statements of not-quite-support are understandable considering that his campaign in both 2008 (Open Secret) and 2012 (LA Times 7/22/11Washington Post 10/19/11) have received massive funding from Wall Street firms; he has received more donations from the securities and investment industry than any other candidate in the past 20 years. (Influence Explorer through Q2 2011) Any hope that he might support the movement were dashed when his Department of Homeland Security aided local governments in suppressing and evicting protesters. (Guardian 11/25/11)
  • Obama’s first appointed director to the National Economic Council, Larry Summers, has had a long-standing close relationship with Wall Street. In 2008 alone, Summers was paid $5.7 million for working one day a week at the hedge fund D.E. Shaw, and receivied $2.7 million in speaking fees from companies such as Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, Lehman Brothers, and Merrill Lynch. (Washington Post 4/6/09) In 2000, when California Governor Gray Davis contacted the federal authorities with concerns that Enron was manipulating the market, Summers (who at that time was Treasury Secretary under President Clinton) joined Alan Greespan and, in one meeting, Enron CEO Ken Lay to urge Davis to deregulate California energy companies, remove caps on consumer prices, and relax environmental regulations. (The Daily Beast 11/12/08) Obama initially considered nominating Summers for Treasury Secretary, but ultimately decided to appoint him head of the NEC, which would not require Senate confirmation. (Salon 4/4/09)
  • When Summers stepped down from his post, Obama replaced him with Gene Sperling, who had already held the position for several years under Clinton. During this previous term as NEC director, Sperling was a chief negotiator on the Financial Modernization Act (NARA 1999), more commonly known as Gramm-Leach-Bliley. GLB repealed portions of the Glass-Steagall Act that had forbidden an institution from operating as any combination of investment bank, commercial bank, and insurance company. (LOC 11/2/99) On the campaign trail, Obama placed a great deal of the blame for the current recession on this repeal, but this rhetoric has all but disappeared from his public statements (NYT 11/12/09), and his appointment of the very negotiator responsible as his top economic adviser paints a grim picture for those who seek to have Glass-Steagall restored.
  • Obama’s Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner has his own host of controversies. The issues range from failure to pay $35,000 in taxes between 2001 and 2004 (Washington Times 1/14/09) to his role in the AIG bonus scandal in 2009. That year, Geithner and Larry Summers lobbied then-Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd to alter an amendment in the stimulus bill. The original amendment limited bonuses and so-called “golden parachutes” at companies receiving federal bailout money; at the request of Summers and Geithner, Dodd added a loophole exempting previously-existing bonus contracts from being affected. (CNN 3/19/09) AIG, a recipient of over $170 billion in bailout money, soon announced a plan to pay $165 million in executive bonuses. (NYT 3/14/09) Geithner himself was involved in AIG’s bailout while he was president of the New York Federal Reserve, as well as the bailout of Citigroup, both in 2008. (NYT 11/24/08)
  • While president of the New York Fed, Geithner discouraged the New York Attorney General from pursuing criminal action against AIG executives involved in the company’s collapse (NYT 4/14/11); that same attitude characterizes the Obama administration’s approach to prosecution. The Justice Department has declined to prosecute executives at several companies; they dropped their investigation against the former CEO of Countrywide Financial, one of the country’s biggest mortgage lenders (NYT 2/19/11), and have decided not to prosecute Washington Mutual executives for their part in the biggest bank failure in American history.(Bloomberg 8/5/11) Federal prosecution for financial institution fraud is at a 20-year low. (Huffington Post 11/15/11)
  • When Wisconsin governor Scott Walker attacked public sector unions in the state, seeking to strip them of their right to collective bargaining, Obama spoke out against the attacks, but made no action to help the workers, refusing to even visit Wisconsin (in contradiction to a campaign promise to “walk on that picket line” when bargaining rights came under fire). (Huffington Post 2/24/11) When the Democratic Party begin mobilizing to support the Wisconsin workers, Obama’s White House staff reined them in. (NYT 3/3/11)
  • Obama and the Department of Labor sat on a review of child farm labor laws for several months, well past the February 2011 deadline for review and public comment; the rules were finally made public in September. In that time, two 17-year-old boys were critically injured on a farm in Oklahoma, and two 14-year-old girls were electrocuted and killed on a Monsanto farm in Illinois. (Huffington Post 8/15/11DOL 10/31/11)
  • The Obama White House was closely involved in a deal awarding solar panel manufacturer Solyndra LLC a half-billion-dollar federal loan (ABC 9/13/11), and Obama praised the company as an example of the success of his economic policies; the company filed for bankruptcy in August and laid off over a thousand workers. (AP via Syracuse Post-Standard 8/31/11) It was later revealed that Solyndra had run out of money and defaulted; the Department of Energy restructured the loan in an attempt to keep the company solvent. (Wall Street Journal 9/28/11) A decades-long Treasury official testified that he has “never seen” a loan agreement be restructured like Solyndra’s. (Washington Examiner 10/14/11) When another company given a loan under the same program received negative press, the Department of Energy altered old press releases to remove that company’s name. (CNBC 10/19/11) When it became clear in 2010 that Solyndra would lay off workers, the Obama administration asked the company to delay the announcement until after the midterm elections on November 2; the company agreed, and made the announcement on November 3. (Washington Post 11/15/11)
  • The administration has boasted of its foreclosure prevention program, but the foreclosure rate is still increasing. (AP via NPR 11/10/11) The foreclosure program has had little oversight and no transparency. Mortgage companies are being paid millions of dollars in taxpayer money, but audit results are not being made public, and there is evidence that the mortgage companies are performing the same abuses as always without any consequences. (Pro Publica 10/4/11) Obama’s Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) was based on an industry plan, and deliberately crafter its language to exlude millions of homeowners who were seen as undeserving. The administration was dismissive of proposals to allow bankruptcy judges to lower mortgage payments on primary residences a prohibition not applied to any other type of debt and which Obama himself opposed on the campaign trail. (Pro Publica 2/4/11)
  • Shortly after the mortgage audits were made public, the Obama administration rolled out a new plan to lower mortgage payments for homeowners in need. But the new plan would make the taxpayer liable for refinanced loans; banks would be immune to liability. Furthermore, the plan does nothing to address the fact that most of these mortgages are for significantly more money than the homes are actually worth, which experts say is the core problem in the housing crisis. (Huffington Post 10/24/11)
  • When some states notified the Treasury of their intention to use money from the Hardest Hit Fund (a program under TARP intended to help homeowners in the states hit worst by unemployment and the housing market crisis) on legal aid groups that help individual homeowners, the Treasury told these states that doing so would violate TARP rules—a decision they reached after consulting with a law firm that represents several large banks and lending institutions. (The Nation 12/9/10)
  • A 2011 audit has revealed that the Federal Reserve is “riddled” with serious conflicts of interest. A number of high-ranking Fed officials have strong ties to the financial industry, and have used the Fed to award their companies emergency loans. The Fed’s conflict of interest rules have been kept secret, as well as waivers to the rules; the information was only brought to light under a GAO audit. (Senate 10/19/11)
  • Wall Street is making more money under Obama than it ever did under Bush. (Washington Post 11/6/11) The government has invested with banks to the tune of billions of taxpayer dollars, while U.S. poverty rates are higher than ever. (CBS 9/13/11)
  • Obama signed an executive order announcing his commitment to “review” regulations on business, characterizing the current regulatory framework as “redundant” and “excessively burdensome” on businesses. (NYTWhite House, both 1/18/11) Within days, OSHA began withdrawing a number of proposed rules, including a strengthening of workplace noise regulations and a rule to provide a space on employer injury and illness forms to record musculoskeletal disorders. (The Hill 1/30/11)
  • Obama publicly espoused rhetoric that seemed to endorse made-in-America manufacturing policies, but opposed Congressional attempts at including such policies in legislation, and worked in active opposition by pushing trade deals with South Korea, which would deal a significant blow to the American auto industry and provide material support to Korean firms with serious labor rights problems. (Alternet 8/26/10)

On Healthcare

  • The Obama administration lauds the healthcare plan as a major success, but it was compromised from the start. Obama made back-room deals with the private medical industry to block the public option he claimed to support. (HuffPo 3/16/10NYT 8/13/09)
  • When the anti-choice Stupak amendment was removed from the final version of the bill that was passed in 2010, President Obama effectively reinstated it, banning women covered under the high-risk insurance pool program from using that insurance to access abortion services. (ACLU 7/15/10)
  • An analysis by the Physicians for a National Health Program concluded that the healthcare bill as passed will leave 23 million people uninsured while hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars will be shoveled to private health insurance companies. (PNHP 3/22/10)
  • Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services granted waivers to thirty large, mostly private, employers, including McDonald’s and Jack in the Box, exempting them from requirements to provide coverage to their employees; the waivers leave nearly a million workers uninsured. (USA Today 10/7/10)
  • The Obama administration refused to release a list of health industry executives visiting the White House during negotiations over the healthcare bill, using an argument originated by George W. Bush that such documents were exempt from public disclosure laws, and contradicting campaign promises for transparency in healthcare negotiations. (LA Times 7/22/09)
  • During the 2011 debt ceiling negotiations, President Obama offered to inrease the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 67 in exchange for Republican agreement to raise certain taxes. (Huffington Post 7/11/11) In addition to the obvious threat to public health this poses, it would lead to an increase in total health spending. (CBPP 8/23/11)
  • Obama sought to slash $300 to $500 billion in “entitlement spending”, including massive cuts to Medicare; he has said that “healthcare cuts” are required in any budget deal. (NYT 9/13/11)
  • The Obama administration has fought aggressively to buy a controversial smallpox drug from a company called Siga (owned by a longtime donor to the Democratic Party), despite concerns over both its necessity and its effectiveness. When Department of Health and Human Services officials balked at the company’s asking price, the government replaced the lead negotiator. When Siga was in danger of losing the contract, the government blocked other companies from bidding. The final agreement pays Siga significantly more than what government specialists considered a reasonable price. (LA Times 11/13/11)
  • Part of the healthcare bill required that employer-provided health insurance cover birth control. The Obama administration is seeking to allow a wide range of exemptions to this rule, allowing any religiously-affiliated employer to opt out. This would include a number of universities, hospitals, and clinics, and potentially leaving millions of women without access to birth control. (NYT 11/19/11)
  • Obama is joining House Republicans in seeking to modify a formula in the healthcare plan to count Social Security benefits as income, pushing a potential million Americans out of the Medicaid eligibility bracket each year. (Washington Times 11/24/11)
  • The Obama administration argued to the Supreme Court that hospitals and clinics cannot sue drug companies for discounts they are entitled to under federal law or for recompense after being overcharged. (NYT 1/9/11)
  • The administration rewrote the rules of the healthcare bill, removing coverage for end-of-life planning, apparently due to fears that an incoming Republican majority on Congress would use such language as political ammunition. (NYT ¼/11)
  • The Obama administration hired a former executive from WellPoint, the largest private insurance company in America, to “help implement” the new healthcare law. (Open Left 7/14/10)
  • Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services overruled the FDA and rejected a move to allow the morning-after pill to be sold without an age restriction. (Washington Post 12/7/11) Obama claims not to have been involved in the decision, but publicly supports it nonetheless. (NYT 12/8/11)

On the Environment

  • In 2010, President Obama appointed Islam Siddiqui as Chief Agriculture Negotiator. Prior to his appointment, Siddiqui was a vice president of CropLife America, a bioindustry organization representing, among others, DuPont, Monsanto, and Dow. (Huffington Post 3/18/10CLA) Siddiqui is a staunch supporter of GMO food; during an earlier stint in the Department of Agriculture, he pushed to allow GMO products to be labeled “organic”, and has lobbied for weaking international regulations on pesticide. (GMO Journal 5/6/10)
  • Obama’s USDA and FDA have released a position paper opposing labeling for genetically modified foods. The paper claims that such labels are “false, misleading, or deceptive,” saying that food labels should not “suggest or imply that GM/GE foods are in any way different from other foods.” (The Atlantic 4/26/10)
  • The Minerals Management Service (later reorganized into the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement) allowed dozens of oil companies, including BP, to drill in the Gulf of Mexico without permits or environmental assessments, and frequently overruled its own staff scientists who raised objections regarding the safety of offshore drilling both in the Gulf of Mexico and in Alaska. These fast-tracked approvals included the Deepwater Horizon rig, which exploded in 2010 and caused the largest oil spill in history. (NYT 5/14/10) The Department of the Interior was warned by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration that it was dramatically underestimating the frequency of oil spills and the risk of a major spill, but the warnings were ignored and Obama announced plans to expand offshore oil drilling. (Huffington Post 7/3/10)
  • Charles Monnett, a high-ranking scientist with the OEMRE, published a 2006 paper documented the severe effects of climate change on Arctic polar bears and has raised awareness of the issue worldwide. When oil firms seeking to drill in the Arctic complained of environmental reviews causing delays in the permitting process, Monnett was put on suspension, silenced with a gag order, and forbidden from talking with his colleagues; Obama soon signed an order demanding that Arctic drilling permits be expedited. (Guardian 7/28/11)
  • This stifling of scientists’ concerns about environmental effects of government policies is wide-reaching: scientists in the Pacific Northwest were pressured to downplay the effects dams have on salmon populations, water quality experts were interfered with when studying the effects of development projects on the Everglades, biologists throughout the West have reported being pressures to ignore the effects of overgrazing, and calls for further study were ignored when the government decided to treat the Gulf oil spill with massive amounts of potentially toxic chemicals. (LA Times 7/10/10)
  • Obama’s Interior Department upheld a Bush-era rule that forbids use of the Endangered Species Act to combat greenhouse gas emissions. (Time 5/8/09)
  • The Obama administration argued in court to uphold a rule that lifted a restriction on the amount of public land a private company can use. Environmental groups had sued, saying it gave companies unlimited access to dump toxic waste on public land. (CBS 4/2/10)
  • When New York City and eight different states filed suit against a group of coal-burning utility companies to try to force them to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Obama’s Justice Department argued to the Supreme Court against the lawsuit, siding with the utility companies. (WSJ 8/26/10)
  • Obama overruled the EPA and a unanimous panel of scientific advisers and canceled a proposed EPA regulation that sought to curb smog by restricting the production of ground-level ozone. (AP via Yahoo 9/2/11)
  • Obama’s Department of State has worked with Trans-Canada oil lobbyists to build an environmentally questionable pipeline from Alberta to Texas. Rather than providing oversight, the State Department has given the company support, even after Trans-Canada suggested dropping their request to pump oil at higher pressures than allowed, then reapplying for a waiver after the project is approved. (NYT 10/3/11) In October, Obama hired a former Trans-Canada lobbyist as a senior advisor to his re-election campaign. (Tar Sands Action 10/24/11)
  • The Obama administration has continued—and stepped up—Bush’s abuse of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, turning what is supposed to be a regulatory research office into a tool for industries to lobby for looser environmental and safety rules. The Obama administration has changed 76% of rules submitted through OIRA, including a staggering 85% of EPA-related rules, for the benefit of industry. (Guardian 11/28/11)
  • The Obama administration is supporting genetically engineered agriculture in fifty wildlife refuges in violation of a lawsuit settlement with Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). Peer calls the program a “joint effort with Monsanto … part of a White House pledge to double exports.” (Truthout 7/25/11)
  • Obama’s Department of the Interior has approved scores of seismic surveys and drilling operations in the Gulf of Mexico without permits required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act and the Endangered Species Act. (Center for Biological Diversity 5/14/10)

On Education

  • Obama’s “Race to the Top” competition for school grants continues the policies of No Child Left Behind, judging performance on test scores, pushing school closures as a viable reform method, and promoting charter schools at the expense of the public school system. (Democracy Now 3/5/10) The changes made by state school systems to compete in the program led 746 school principals in New York to sign a letter of protest against testing. (NYT 11/27/11)

On Taxes, Budget, and Social Services

  • Obama extended the Bush tax cuts as part of a deal with Congressional Republicans in 2010. In addition to tax cuts or freezes across the board, the deal includes a tax cut for the top 2% of earners, an estimated $120 billion over two years; and an estate tax exemption for property less than $10 million. (ABC 12/17/10)
  • The deal brokered by Obama and Boehner during the manufactured debt ceiling “crisis” is estimated to reduce the United States GDP by $241 billion and cost nearly two million jobs—and these estimates are for 2012 alone. (EPI 8/1/11) The President has argued that the crisis, in particular the meaningless S&P downgrade of the U.S. credit score, makes it necessary to cut funding to social security and Medicare—but not the defense budget. (Politico 8/9/11)
  • Obama revived a failed Bush commission on debt and packed it with officials who have made careers of trying to attack and dismantle social security. (AlterNet 3/28/10)
  • The White House is seeking to cut funding from a program that trains occupational nurses, doctors, and safety professionals, and researches ways to decrease job-related fatalities in the agriculture, logging, and fishing industries, where death rates range from 5 to 58 times the national average. (CPI 8/4/11)
  • Obama supported passage of a House bill drafted by Republicans that would eliminate a tax compliance rule for governmnent contractors and pay for it by reducing Medicaid eligibility. (TPM 10/25/11) He also supported a budget that would cut funding for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program in half, leaving millions without winter heat. (Christian Science Monitor 2/10/11)
  • The Obama administration supported a bill that would encourage public housing authorities to rely on private funding, and would decrease public funding with a goal of, as a National Housing Institute analysis put it, “getting the federal government out of the low-income affordable housing business.” (Washington Post 7/14/10NHI summer 2010)

On LGBTQIA rights

  • President Obama spent two years in opposition to the right of same-sex couples to marry before finally stepping back its policy and declaring it would not defend DOMA challenges in court. (ACLU 2/23/11) A spokesman for Obama said in 2010 that the president “does oppose same-sex marriage, but he supports equality for gay and lesbian couples” and that same-sex marriage is “an issue for the states.” (The Hill 8/5/10) Despite its declaration that it would no longer defend DOMA, it used the act later that year to deny immigration benefits to a married gay couple, deporting a man who was the primary caregiver to his AIDS-afflicted husband. (SF Gate 8/9/11)

On Transparency

  • One of Barack Obama’s major campaign issues was transparency; it is also turning out to be one of his major betrayals. Federal agencies denied more than 70,000 Freedom of Information Act requests under the “deliberative process” exemption (which Obama claimed to oppose) during the 2009 fiscal year alone; denials under all exemptions in the same time frame approached 500,000. These numbers represent a marked increase in both number and rate of denial from previous years, even though the number of FOIA requests actuallydecreased. (Huffington Post 3/16/10)
  • Despite campaign promises that he would protect and strengthen whistleblowers’ rights (Change.gov), Obama’s administration prosecuted more whistleblowers and alleged leaks in his first 18 months than any other president did in their entire administration. (NYT 6/11/10) His Justice Department reissued a Bush-era subpoena demanding aNew York Timeswriter reveal his source in an article on a bungled CIA job. This revival of the Bush administration’s prosecution stands in marked contrast to Obama’s “forward-looking” hands-off approach to prosecuting Bush officials for their wrongdoing. (Salon 4/29/10)
  • Breanna Manning, accused of leaking hundreds of thousands of diplomatic cables and documents to WikiLeaks, has been held in captivity since May of 2010; for almost a year of that time (AP via NYT 4/28/11), she was kept in solitary confinement and forced to sleep in the nude. President Obama defended her treatment (NYT 3/11/11), and the Department of Defense did not so much as set a hearing date until November, a full 18 months after Manning’s arrest. (NYT 11/21/11)[Private Manning was arrested under the name Bradley Manning; since the news reports linked here were published, however, it became known that Manning identifies as female and prefers the name Breanna.]
  • During his campaign, Obama promised that lobbyists and former lobbyists would not be allowed to work for the administration, and once in office he set up rules to that effect. However, his administration has repeatedly given waivers to lobbyists, allowing them to circumvent the rule; in many cases, not even a waiver has been issued. (Obameter) At least 15 high-power fundraisers for Obama’s 2012 campaign are unregistered lobbyists, including executives from Pfizer and Comcast. (NYT 10/27/11)
  • Obama’s Department of Justice is pushing to allow government agencies to outright lie about the existence of sensitive records. Instead of saying it can neither confirm nor deny whether it has a given record, the new rules would give the government the ability to say the record doesn’t exist. (Pro Publica 10/24/11)
  • When he took office, Obama announced he would publicly release White House visitor logs in the interests of transparency, but the actual logs released have serious gaps and omissions. (CPI 4/13/11) Furthermore, the administration has taken to simply meeting with lobbyists at a coffee shop across the street from the White House in order to avoid having records of the visits. (NYT 6/24/10)

(Source)

Obama’s Crimes by themindislimitless:

These things are really not hard to find. Situate them in the context of the struggle against white supremacist heteropatriarchal imperialist capitalism and it’s really not hard to arrive at the conclusion that Obama is firmly acting on behalf of, as part of, the oppressor class. 

7

A set of photos were released by the state news agency on the occasion of Crown Prince Al Hussein bin Abdullah II’s 21st birthday

28/6/2015:  Crown Prince Hussein turns 21 today. His Royal Highness is the eldest son of King Abdullah II ibn Al Hussein and Queen Rania Al Abdullah. He was born in Amman on 28 June 1994, and was named Crown Prince, by Royal Decree, in July 2009.

The Crown Prince graduated high school in 2012, from King’s Academy - a boarding school in Jordan modeled after Deerfield Academy - and is currently majoring in international history, School of Foreign Services at Georgetown University, Washington DC.

On 23 April 2015, Prince Al Hussein became the youngest person ever to chair a UN Security Council meeting, leading an open debate on how youth can combat violent extremism and its “poisonous ideology”. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said he is “not yet 21-years-old, but he is already a leader in the 21st century.”

Like his father, King Abdullah II, and his grandfather and namesake, the late King Hussein, Crown Prince Al Hussein is a peacemaker in the making. Speaking via video at the Round Square International Conference at his alma mater last year, the young Prince urged 600 students from around the globe to “remember those in this region and others around the world for whom conflict is a daily reality and peace a distant hope.”

Despite a demanding academic schedule, Prince Hussein has served as Regent in the Kingdom on several occasions, has accompanied His Majesty on working trips to the United States, South Korea, Kazakhstan and several GCC countries, and was in Jordan to receive Pope Francis alongside his father in May of last year.

The Crown Prince Foundation is being set up and will focus on youth initiatives in Jordan including “Haqiq,” Achieve in English, a youth volunteerism program the Prince founded in 2013. Last year, the Crown Prince also launched the “Hearing Without Borders” program, with a vision to make Jordan free from hearing disabilities and help deaf children across the Kingdom. To date, the program has helped around 500 children with hearing disabilities. The Crown Prince’s initiatives also include “Qusai” aimed at training and certifying sports therapists.

The Crown Prince holds the rank of second lieutenant in the Jordanian Armed Force and has participated in several military training courses. He has an active Instagram account (@alhusseinjo), and he enjoys a variety of sports, including football and hiking.

The Royal Court also wishes the prince a happy birthday on Instagram

يهنئ الديوان الملكي الهاشمي صاحب السمو الملكي الأمير الحسين بن عبدالله الثاني، ولي العهد، بمناسبة عيد ميلاده الحادي والعشرون ويتمنى له العمر المديد

The Royal Hashemite Court wishes His Royal Highness Crown Prince Al Hussein bin Abdullah II a Happy 21st birthday

#Jordan #OurJordan #RHCJO #أردننا#الأردن

Yet another thing about CA:CW

(#sorrynotsorry)

The Sokovia Accords were, ultimately, a response to the Avengers operating on their own orders without any supervision, right?

So, why didn’t they write Accords that dealt with the Avengers as an organization, a non-state entity operating outside the bounds of international law?

Because instead of creating a registry of powered people that is then controlled by the UN? the Security Council? some unnamed IGO? (which has a pretty severe “uh oh” factor), it would have accomplished something similar while still maintaining international diplomacy and cooperation and holding up international law as the goal and guide, rather than Ross’s weird vendetta against people with powers.

Not to mention, Tony Stark, Sam Wilson, James Rhodes, Scott Lang, Clint Barton, and Natasha Romanoff (at least as far as we know) are not “enhanced.” They wear suits or are very highly-trained, but it’s their position within the Avengers organization that places them under the jurisdiction of the Accords.

It was the actions of a private citizen that created Ultron, and it was funding by a private citizen that operated the Avengers. And when the Avengers went out and fought after the fall of SHIELD, there was no organization or government or any sort of entity overseeing their actions. So, in theory, these private citizens with unlimited resources could go anywhere in the world and wreak havoc, but there was no international law that could deal with the organization because it was not a state, and there was no one state that could deal with the Avengers because they were privately owned and operated, not representative of any government.

So, by framing the Accords as an agreement between a non-state party and the international community, the Avengers would have been put in check and given the opportunity to work within the system but not be controlled by it. Plus, it would have normalized enhanced individuals internationally as participants in the same institutions and norms that non-enhanced people value.