It's late on the night of Oct. 5. I've been going through the world news on the web, through highly reputable news media like The Guardian, The Independent (Britain) Haaretz (Israel, Le Monde (France)... You can do it, too. Just google them. There are some big stories. Let's see how many of them are important enough to make The Moncton Times and Transcript (or most North American news media oon thursday, Oct. 6.. There's also an interesting American website called Veterans for Common Sense.
1. 20% of American veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan are suffering serious mental illness, and a high rate of suicide. What's happening to our troops? Nobody tells us. And nobody asks.
2. American government documents show that the Bush government was preparing for invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan BEFORE 9/11.
3. The former chief of Israeli intelligence says Iran is nowhere close to producing a nuclear weapons. He also says Israel's is followinig a disastrous path in dealing with Palestine.
4. The Occupy Wall street movement has spread to at least 60 American cities - and the support in New York is rapidly growing.
5. Afghanistan has signed a "defence" agreement with India. It is aimed at Pakistan. Both India and Pakistan have nuclear weapons. China, too, is making its own friends - with Pakistan. US senators have been talking publicly of invading Pakistan.
6. An "Arab Spring" uprising has been going on for three days in Saudi Arabia. Today, soldiers were using live ammunition against it. The Saudi governoment is not only extremely Moslem; it is also one of the strongest dictatorships in the world - far more so in both respects than Ghadaffi ever was. Think NATO will protest? Dream on.
7. In Sarti, Libya, the city we Canadians are now bombing, the civilian death toll is now many thousands. That's what bombing does.to a city. Those who have escaped say the defenders of the city are not Ghadaffi loyalists. They are people who - probably like most Libyans - destest the rebels whom we support. They fight because they expect the rebels to kill them, anyway. And we're bombing them. Let's all sing O Canada.
8. For the past year, Obama has been breaking American law by giving military aid to countries like Congo and Yemen that use child soldiers. (Under fifteen.) He is expected to announce soon that he will continue the military aid for another year, and add more such countries to the list. The law against this is the Child Protection Act (1906).
It's not hard to find this. Just skip most North American news agencies, and use your computer.
It's morning. The Moncton TaT has room for only two of t hose important stories. And in neither case did it tell the whole story. The Greek protest gets only a picture and a sentence on the business page. A to Sirte, it does not mention that the holdouts in Sirte are NOT soldiers and NOT Ghafaddi loyalists. It says civilians are dying in Sirte. I doesn't mention that we Canadians are killing them.
Take a look over that list of eight topics. If you were an editor, would you conisder it important that Bush was planning the Iraq and Afghanistan invasions before 9/11? That the US is, against American and intenational law, giving aid to countries with child soldiers? That a potential world war is shaping up over Pakistan? The the Wall Street movement is spreading rapidly, and will reach Canada and Europe on Oct. 15? (It is now in over 60 US cities.)
But, of course, there was no room at the TandT.. The big stories on the front page were about two, cute dogs that survived a car accident, a baby crane being hatched at the zoo, and a picture of high water at Pointe-de-Chene.
The only important story (p.A4) is a report of a letter from Stephane Dion warning Alward that Senate reform could weaken New Brunswick. (You may or may not like Dion, but he knows what he's talking about ini consitutional matters. In contrast, Mr. Alwarrd appears to be a man who could not find his own bellybutton using both hands.)
Oh--- big story on the frontpage. A meeting for adults in a school gymn (our of school hours) will be servinge lliquor. Horrors! This will send the wrong omessage to children.
This horror reminds me ofo the fuss over the schools playing O Canada every day. The Moncton Times and Transcript advertises liquor. Yesterday it carried a big story about the Molson family who, I understand, produce an alcoholic beverage. Many homes, perhaps most, in New Brunswick have alcohol in them - and I believe some parents drink it. The Tand T routinely encourages drinking AND gambling at the Casino. Apparently, this doesn`t send a message.
I suggest all the selfrighteous hypocrites who scream in alarm about `the horror of liquor in a school gymn when no children are there go soak their heads.
Of - we could turn to the tried and true New Brunswick method of dealing with crises. We could all stand up ever day and sing O Canada. We could also ad the story of the girl in the street who sings, `Father`s a Drumkard and Mother is Dead.``
In the editorials, the big issues facing the world today are night work rules for road repairs, and the pension for the mayor of St. John.
Excellent and important column by Alec Bruce, thought provokinig one by Norbert Cunningham.
The usual, irrelevant column by a staffer is at the top of op ed page.
The usual, good one by Jody Dallaire is below it. This time it`s on women who fought for freedom. She does not mention the women who campaigned for pohibition in New Brunswick. Though usually dismissed as misled enthusiasts, they played a decisive role in liberating women, and in creating the modern state. If ms. Dallaire would ike further information, she should leave a note in the comment space below this column. I hav done considerable research and writing on this topic.