— A Pseudo-Ottoman Blog: Occasional Musings —

‘Within hours of announcing the end of its military campaign against Houthi rebels in Yemen, a Saudi-led coalition’s planes bombed the city of Taiz. Fighting is also continuing in the port city of Aden. All this comes despite Riyadh declaring that its month-long campaign, which sought to restore the country’s president, had achieved its goals. But the surprise statement raises more questions than answers, since the deposed leader has not resumed his role as the country’s number one (23 April 2015)’.

‘The host of HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher joins Larry to sound off on today’s hottest issues, including his call to Republicans to impeach Obama. And, why he’s not wild about Hillary. Plus, his reasons for rethinking Monica Lewinsky’s intelligence. Published on May 15, 2014′.

‘U.S. Soldier Ethan McCord speaking about the civilian massacre documented in WikiLeaks’s April 2010 video disclosure of Apache helicopter footage of a New Baghdad attack that took place in 2007,[i] allegedly released by PFC Brad Manning. McCord’s story was delivered to attendees of the United National Peace Conference, which took place in Albany NY the weekend of July 23-25, 2010. Produced by the United National Peace Conference Media Project, powered by The Sanctuary for Independent Media and the Hudson Mohawk Independent Media Center’.

[1] “Decadence Unbound: Record Breaking Year for ‘Call of Duty’” A Pseudo-Ottoman Blog (06 Jan 2011). https://sitanbul.wordpress.com/2011/01/06/decadence-unbound-record-breaking-year-for-call-of-duty/.

‘On The Laura Flanders Show: Author/activist Arundhati Roy on the Annihilation of Caste, B.R. Ambedkar and the Western myth of Mahatma Gandhi. And Glenn Greenwald addresses diversity concerns about his new media venture TheIntercept.com. Published on Oct 21, 2014′.

“It will be distressing to people in the black community who have been taught to valorize him and people on the American left who keep invoking him, but the fact is that all of us including I have been taught that Ghandi’s political awakening happened when he was thrown out of a white’s only compartment in South Africa on the train, and in fact Ghandi believed in racial segregation. His first victory in South Africa was to campaign for a third entrance to be opened in the Durban post office so that Indians would not have to use the same entrance as Kaffers. And all my analysis is not my analysis, I have just reproduced his own writing so there is no interpretation going on here, and he calls them savages and caffers, and people say oh he changed but he did not change you know, he partnered with the British in the war to tighten imperialism in South Africa.”

 ‘There are very few government checks on what America’s sweeping surveillance programs are capable of doing. John Oliver sits down with Edward Snowden to discuss the NSA, the balance between privacy and security, and dick-pics (5 April 2015)’  

‘On Thursday, 2 April 2015, European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and Iran Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammad Javad Zarif announced that negotiators had reached a framework agreement for an Iran nuclear deal’.

‘Iran and six world powers have agreed to a political framework for a final nuclear deal. Iran’s foreign minister called it a “win-win,” while noting the fragile state of U.S.-Iran relations. President Obama praised the deal, saying it is based on unprecedented verification, but critics remain in Washington, Tehran and beyond. Judy Woodruff talks to Indira Lakshmanan of Bloomberg News (2 April 2015)’.

And then there is Crazy Bibi: ‘Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he and his Cabinet are united in ‘strongly opposing’ proposed Iran nuclear deal. (3 April 2015)’.

‘Jan Blommaert, Professor of Linguistic Anthropology at Tilburg University and Visiting Professor in the PhD program in Applied Linguistics at Hellenic American University, met the Greek public again οn February 27th 2015, with a talk entitled “The Limits to Democracy”. The lecture was organized by the Hellenic American College Linguistics Department in cooperation with Hellenic American University (Manchester, NH, USA). Prof. Blommaert has provided the following abstract of his talk: This lecture will examine a discursive template that has emerged in the context of austerity politics all over the EU: that of “limited democracy”. In this template, democratic procedures and principles are suggested to be subject – inferior – to concerns of a higher order, and two such concerns stand out. One, the economic conjuncture which needs to be turned around by means of more market-less government strategies, in which the democratic system is asked to withdraw from large sets of previously entrenched decision-making powers. Two, and as a corollary of the first one, security: threats to “political stability” are presented as danger for democracy and have to be met with new forms of informal justice and radical policing, jeopardizing (or undercutting) established civil liberties in a democratic society. The “limits to democracy” framework has spawned new social and political movements in the EU – Syriza, Podemos and several others – for whom the “crisis” is less an economic issue than a crisis of the fundamentals of the democratic system’.  

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