There will be elections for the parliament in Afghanistan on September 18. Few Canadians are aware of this as there has been no coverage by our mass media. For geopolitical reasons, the U.S. government has been deeply involved in Afghanistan since the early 1970s. But Canada’s involvement in the war and economic development has been justified on the grounds that we are helping to build democracy. How has this been going?
There are many reasons why a liberal democratic political system has not been established since the U.S. invasion and overthrow of the Taliban regime in October 2001.
First, it is clear that the majority of the Afghan people wanted the return of the 1964 Constitution, which was established in a very open and democratic manner, but the U.S. government, backed by its allies, said no. Afghanistan had a constitutional parliamentary form of government; the new constitution, imposed by the U.S. government and its allies, established a very strong, centralized presidential system of government. For example, the president appoints provincial governors and mayors of cities. Why don’t we have that in Canada?
A former United Church minister who blew the whistle on
deaths in residential schools will speak in Regina this Friday, followed by a
Saturday sharing circle. Author Kevin Annett’s talk will shed light on the
extermination of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada and the theft of their land. The event, sponsored by the Social Policy Research Unit of
the University of Regina, is free to all. It will begin Friday evening with a
smudging and pipe ceremony and a feast prepared by Chili for Children, at 6:30
p.m., followed by Mr. Arnett’s presentation at 7:30 p.m., in Theatre Room 119,
Research and Innovation Centre Building (New Lab Building).A Sharing Circle with Mr. Annett will be
held on Saturday, September 11th at 10 am, also in Theatre Room 119. For
Serious Crisis in Cancer Care Delivery to Sask Women
Contributed by Darlene
Wednesday, 08 September 2010
Dr. Maryam Al-Hayki, Regina’s remaining gynecologic oncologist has taken emergency medical leave.With the recent closure of Dr. Brydon’s office, this puts gynecologic cancer care in Regina in a crisis; leaving the Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region (RQHR) and the Saskatchewan Cancer Agency (SCA)scrambling on a day-to-day basis to provide the best available care for women needing diagnosis, surgery, treatment and follow-up.
The Australian federal election was held last Saturday, and the outcome has yet to be decided. There was a major swing against the Labor government, and their vote total fell to only 38%. The more right wing Liberal National Party coalition won 44% of the vote. Yet as the final mail-in ballots are being tabulated, it appears that both parties will end up with 70 or 72 seats, and neither will be able to form a majority government.
The big winner in the election was the Australian Green Party, which saw their vote total rise from 7.8% in 2007 to 13.9%. The party won a seat in the House of Representatives, taking Melbourne from Labor. Furthermore, in the Australian Senate, where seats are distributed according to a form of proportional representation, the Greens won a seat in all states for the first time and hold the balance of power. The vote total for the Greens was the highest recorded by any third party in an Australian federal election.
On Monday, July 25 WikiLeaks posted over 90,000 documents from the U.S. military on the war in Afghanistan. These documents are highly classified and leaked by insiders. Julian Assange, who directs the web site from Sweden, had given the documents in advance to The New York Times, the Guardian and Der Spiegel, all of whom strongly support the U.S./NATO war in Afghanistan. This is a small portion of the documents that have been leaked.
The leak was denounced by the Obama administration and other NATO governments. They have been dismissed by media supporters of the war, like Christie Blatchford of the Globe and Mail. The Globe occasionally complains about government secrecy, but in this case the editors criticize WikeLeaks for creating a “national security” threat to the war operations.
Afghan war documents - where to find them, how to download them
Written by From WikiLeaks
Monday, 26 July 2010
25th July 2010 5:00 PM EST WikiLeaks has released a document set called the Afghan War Diary, an extraordinary compendium of over 91,000 reports covering the war in Afghanistan from 2004 to 2010.
The reports, while written by soldiers and intelligence officers, and mainly describing lethal military actions involving the United States military, also include intelligence information, reports of meetings with political figures, and related details.
To browse the documents, the document collection is available on a dedicated webpage.To download them, click on 'read more' for information and instructions.
US Climate Bill Would Cut Deficit by $19 Billion Over 10 years
Contributed by Jim Elliott
Monday, 19 July 2010
The current climate and energy bill now stalled in the US Senate would reduce the federal budget by about $19 Billion over the next decade. This is what the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said. This is the second positive report on the bill by a government agency. The first is the Environmental Protection Agency.
"There is no more room for excuses - this must be our year to pas comprehensive climate and energy legislation and begin to send a price signal on carbon," said Senator John Kerry, D-Mass, the chief author of the bill.
In its report, the CBO said that revenues would go up by $751 Billion from 2011 to 2020, mostly through the sale of carbon credits in a so-called cap and trade plan to be applied to utilities and other sectors of the economy. On the debit side, the plan would cost about $732 Billion, mostly from refunds to utility bills and tax credits as well as investments in energy provisions including research and development. The Senate bill would tax carbon dioxide emissions by coal-fired power plants and other large emitters.
The analysis by the EPA said that the bill would cost households about $79 to $146 per year. The authors of the bill say that Americans would be willing to pay less than a dollar a day to curb climate change while reducing oil imports and creating energy-related jobs.
Issue No. 1 of Utilitarian Donuts released
Written by Aleks McHugh
Saturday, 17 July 2010
The first issue of Regina's newest magazine, Utilitarian Donuts, is out. Its contents skip across variegated terrain, touching down upon global poverty and the bp oil spill, kicking up a fine red
dust of fantastic mythology and linguistic delight along the way. The result,
a scintillating mix of poetics and polemics, is sure to leave readers wanting
for dreary politics and uniform style. Copies are $6. Visit
utilitariandonuts.com for purchasing details and for notice of an upcoming
launch/open mic event (date TBA).
Saskatchewan reacts to Toronto arrests
Written by Gord Barnes
Friday, 16 July 2010
On Human Rights Radio, on Friday, July 16 at 12:00 noon, Mona Hill is
interviewing Professor Garson Hunter and Mike Medby about their experiences in
Toronto during G20. In Regina at 91.3 FM or over the internet.
Amnesty International Saskatchewan members and supporters are encouraged to
participate in protests this Saturday, July 17, at 11am, calling for an inquiry
into police tactics at the G20.
In Saskatoon, the start is at River
Landing (by Victoria/Traffic Bridge)
In Regina, the start is at the
buffalo statue near Scarth and 12th.
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