SECTION SEVENTEEN
EMAIL PAGE SIXTEEN

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COLUMN SEVENTY-TWO, JUNE 1, 2002
(Copyright 2002 The Blacklisted Journalist)

FROM PORTSIDE
Portside (the left side in nautical parlance) is a
news, discussion and debate service of the Committees
of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism. It
says it aims to provide varied material of interest to people
on the Left. Heretofore , we were  under the impression that Portside  is the Internet's voice of the Left.  But it turns out to be the Internet's voice of the fundamentalist Far-Left, which, like all fundamentalist organizations, adheres to an orthodoxy and consequently refuses to post dissident or differing opinions from within the Left---such as HATE YOUR GOVERNMENT BUT LOVE YOUR COUNTRY, available to be read in SECTION ONE of COLUMN SEVENTY.  Fundamentalists, like fascists, will not tolerate any disagreements or variations from the fundamentalist orthodoxy.

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BRIEFS

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MORE ABOUT SHREDDED ENRON DOCUMENTS AND GEORGE BUSH

The Enron-Cheney-Taliban Connection? AlterNet

By Ron Callari, Albion Monitor (AlterNet, Feb. 28, 2002)

http://www.alternet.org/print.html'storyID=12525

"Enron is a scandal so enormous that it's hard to wrap your mind around it. Not just a single financial disaster, it's actually a jigsaw of interlocking scandals, each outrageous in its own right.

There's Enron the Wall St. con game, where company bookkeepers used slight of hand to turn four years of steady losses into stunning profits. There's Enron the reverse Robin Hood, which stole from its own employees even as its executives were hauling millions of dollars out the backdoor. There's Enron's Ken Lay the Kingmaker, who used the corporation's fraudulent wealth to broker elections and skew public policy to his liking. And then there are the Enron coverups, as documents are shredded and the White House seeks to conceal details about meetings between Enron and Vice President Cheney.

The coverups are still very much a mystery. What were the documents that were fed into the shredder -- even after the corporation declared bankruptcy? What is the White House fighting to keep secret, even going to the length of redefining executive privilege and inviting the first Congressional lawsuit ever filed against a president? Were the consequences of releasing these documents more damaging than the consequences of destroying them?

Could the Big Secret be that the highest levels of the Bush Administration knew during the summer of 2001 that the largest bankruptcy in history was imminent? Or was it that Enron and the White House were working closely with the Taliban - including Osama bin Laden - up to weeks before the Sept. 11 attack? Was a deal in Afghanistan part of a desperate last-ditch "end run" to bail out Enron? Here's a tip for Congressional investigators and federal prosecutors: Start by looking at the India deal. Closely..."  ##

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MORE ABOUT THAT TULSA RACE RIOT

Sitting in a small meeting room in a Unitarian Universalist church slightly north of downtown Tulsa, Oklahoma, people of different races and age groups have gathered. Between bites of doughnuts and sips of coffee, they strategize about their next move, every now and then scribbling ideas with red and green markers on white paper flip charts. "Tie riot in with September 11 as an act of terrorism," reads one line on the "Objectives" list. "Circumvent local politicians and officials by filing a class-action lawsuit," reads the line below it.

Members of the Tulsa Reparations Coalition had hoped they wouldn't be at this place again--square one. After all, the State of Oklahoma had put together a commission to study the matter nearly five years before, and in 2001 it recommended that the state make reparations to the 130 survivors of what some call the worst race riot in US history--the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921. More than 300 blacks were killed and 10,000 left homeless after a mob of white deputies and Oklahoma National Guardsmen descended on the all-black Greenwood section of Tulsa, burning everything in sight. "Reparations were promised by civic and city leaders of the time but did not come through," says State Representative Don Ross, whose district encompasses Greenwood.

Instead, last spring the state decided to establish committees to establish a race riot memorial, as well as a scholarship and a community development fund for this underdeveloped, mostly black area known as North Tulsa. "Those were the concepts that were politically possible," Ross says. But the state didn't put any money into any of the committees, Ross confirms, adding that "some private funds have been raised. 

Subsequently, the state denied that the report assigned it any responsibility--even though the report made it clear that city sheriffs deputized people who participated and implied that a unit of the state militia was involved in detaining blacks. "I have carefully reviewed the finding of the Tulsa Race Riot Commission and, contrary to the statement in your letter, I do not believe that it assigns culpability for the riot to the state," wrote Governor Frank Keating in an October 2001 letter to the Tulsa Reparations Coalition. He further noted that a state law prohibits Oklahoma from making reparations for any past mass crime committed by its officials or on the state's behalf.  ##

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ANOTHER REASON THE WORLD IS PISSED AT US

BANFF, Alberta (Reuters) - The divisions between the world's leading nations over the Kyoto protocol on global warming deepened dramatically on Sunday, when an informal discussion on climate change ended in disarray with both the United States and Canada looking increasingly isolated.

Washington has been relentlessly attacked since abandoning Kyoto last year but after environment ministers from the Group of Eight leading nations ended their 45-minute meeting it was clear European leaders were fast losing patience with Canada's dithering over whether to ratify the accord.

Ottawa, which is under heavy pressure from energy producers and several powerful provinces to follow the U.S. lead and ditch Kyoto, has abandoned all talk of ratification this year and is calling for more nationwide consultations.  

Crucially, it also wants to be given more credit for exporting clean energy to the United States as a way of meeting its Kyoto target for cutting emissions of the greenhouse gases blamed for global warming.  ##

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NEONAZIS THWARTED IN GERMANY

The neo-Nazis are on the march in Germany, but so are antifascists, who just won a significant victory.  In the East German city of Leipzig, a center of action during the final months of the German Democratic Republic, the so-called National Democratic Party (NPD) called on April 6th for Nazis from all over Germany to march from the main station through town to the giant monument commemorating the defeat of Napoleon in 1813 by the crowned heads of Europe. American artillery shells could hardly chip it at the end of World War Two when black-shirted elite SS troops holed up in it in the Battle of the Nations. It is a monster of heavy stone but though many find it ugly, it has great symbolic importance.

The Leipzig city government is ruled by the majority Social Democrats, but the mayor is better than some from his party, a large number of councilors are from the Party of Democratic Socialism (PDS) and there was a vote was against permitting the march. But, as happens so frequently, the courts overruled the decision, since the NPD is still a legal party, though attempts have been launched by the central government to outlaw it. Often enough the city governments in Germany have caved in at that point, and the police have moved in strength to protect the Nazis from anti-fascists who protest their invasions.

But this time the mayor, church leaders, trade unions and other groups united to circulate a petition called "Rightwing Radical Ideas Equal Violence" which very quickly got 16,000 signatures. More important, they joined the antifascist protesters to bar the march route. Only the Christian Democrats refrained from joining in. And this time, almost for the first time in united Germany, the police did not take sides with the Nazis. 4000 of them kept the 1000 neo-Nazis at the main station to check them for weapons, illegal nazi symbols, T-shirts with slogans like "Zyklon B" (the poison gas used at Auschwitz) or the jump boots and military pants which have been their uniform. The frisking process, and checking of identification in case of violations, lasted four hours, by which time the neo-Nazi leaders gave up and called off their march. The ten thousand who were waiting nearby to stand in their way ended the program of music and speeches and celebrated their triumph.  ##

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