Monday 29 April 2013

Saffron - Cooking for Peace with Iran

"Ask the average person in the West what they think of Iran and chances are they'll mention bombs, nukes, war. And that's just if you get them on a good day.

Quite frankly, I'm over this.

At a time of increased military tensions, a project which humanises Iranian people, dispels stereotypes, gives a voice to a people rarely seen or hear in the Western media and promotes cross-cultural understanding could not be more important.  Saffron aims to do just this, guiding readers on a fascinating journey into the hearts (and stomachs) of Iranians today."
                                                      Yasmin Khan

I just happened upon this project whilst looking for something else on a friends facebook page.  I'm certainly glad I did because it's one of the most interesting ideas I've come accross this year.  Yasmin Khan  is a half-Iranian writer, campaigner and most importantly cook.  She's hatched a plan to travel across Iran sharing recipes and cooking with the people she meets and turning this journey into a documentary and cook book.  This project however is about more than just cooking, it's about humanising the Iranian people in our eyes, showing that they're real people too, who enjoy doing the same kind of things we do.  Here's the short film she's made explaining the concept some more

Wars can only take place in the absence of empathy, and getting to know a people is a really good cure for being indifferent as to whether our governments want to kill them or not.  For this project to go ahead Yasmin needs to raise £8,500 by the 21st of May.  She's already a good part of the way there, but needs all the help she can get.  Please visit her campaign website below and if you feel so inclined, make a donation.  I'm sure that if everyone who sees this and thinks 'that's a really great idea!' just gave a few pounds then Yasmin would easily hit her target.  The more connected we here feel to the people of Iran, the less chance there is that it'll become the next Iraq!

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Boston Bombings - Hallmarks of a False Flag?

There's nothing pleasant about speculating on who was really behind terrorist attacks that have claimed the lives of several people and injured hundreds more.  It is however my view that there is very good reason to believe that governments themselves have played a role in carrying out many of the major terrorist events we have witnessed over the past several years, and it therefore becomes necessary to ask these difficult questions.

Why would I say such a thing?  Partly because it's undeniably true, as this segment of Alex Jones' film 'Terrorstorm 911' shows, from the destruction of Iranian democracy in the 1950's to initiating the South East Asian Genocide we call the Vietnam war, governments (particularly the US government) have used false flag terrorism to goad their populations into accepting domestic oppression and engaging in foreign wars.

Many events that are suspected of being false flag terrorism contain certain hallmarks.   One of these is that security personnel will be engaging in a training exercise that that mimics the actual attack, at the same time and location the attack happens.  On September 11th 2001, the US air force was engaged in a war game called Operation Vigilant Guardian, which amongst other things contained a simulated hijacking drill.   On July 7th 2005, at the time bombs were going off on the London underground, a private company was running an exercise simulating bomb attacks at the same stations and times where the actual attacks happened.  And the same was the case in Norway, the Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten reported that the police concluded an anti terror drill 'almost identical' to the attacks carried out by Anders Breivik, just hours before those attacks commenced.  To be precise, Breivik's bomb went of twenty six minutes after the exercise finished.1

So when those who question these things question whether a terrorist incident may be a false flag event, one of the first things they would look for is whether there was a 'training exercise' taking place at the same location and time that the actual attack took place.  And sure enough in Boston it appears there was. 

The next hallmark those who seek might expect to find, is the accused terrorists having a pre-existing relationship with one or more intelligence agencies.  This quickly turned out to be the case with the accused Tsarnaev brothers.  What's so strange about that, wouldn't you expect intelligence agencies to be monitoring such people? Well sure, but as the following video presentation by James Corbett shows, there may be a little bit more to it than that.   It turns out the FBI has been involved in every terrorist plot in the United States over the past ten years, an involvement that goes beyond monitoring to actually masterminding the plots themselves.   Back in 1993 they even supplied the bomb that detonated at the World Trade Centre killing six people.  The ultimate role of intelligence agencies may not be to protect their population from terrorist attacks, but rather to advance the imperial agenda of the state.

It's a matter of historical record that the United States government (or maybe more accurately corporatocracy) has unleashed unlimited brutality on the wider world in pursuit of it's goal of global hegemonic power.   The body count runs well into the millions with the weapons ranging from napalm in Vietnam to the training of death squads in El Salvador, and of course include the more subtle weapon of deception.2  It seems silly to me to on the one hand acknowledge this, yet on the other refuse to even consider that the US gov would ever committed an act of violence against its own population in order to advance this same imperial agenda.  And whether you agree that there's more going on here than we're being lead to believe or not, there's no doubting it's the imperial agenda that will ultimately benefit from this latest tragedy.

This has just been a very quick overview of the things that have most struck me about the Boston Bombings.  There's much more of interest, including pictures of military personnel at the marathon and inconsistencies surrounding the attempts to arrest the Tsarnaev brothers.   If you want to know more then I'd recommend both Global Research and Alex Jones' Infowars as the best places to go.

1. For more on these 'exercises' see my previous post:

2. If you want proof see 'Overthrow – America's Century of Regime Change From Hawaii To Iraq' by Stephen Kinzer. Alternatively read any book by John Pilger or go to his website and watch any of the documentaries.

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Saturday 27 April 2013

Earfilms - Imagination is the New Technology

A friend of mine is involved in a project called Earfilms, a term I have now added to the dictionary on my word processor!   It's essentially a film which you 'watch' blindfolded, a combination of storytelling, 3D surround sound and music is intended to evoke images within the mind, so your imagination literally becomes the screen upon which the story is played out.   In a world where ever more sophisticated levels of technology are employed in our entertainment, it's really appealing to me to see a project that embraces the eternal technology of the eye of the mind.

The European premier of the first feature length Earfilm, 'To Sleep To Dream', is taking place at the Brighton festival from the 4th to the 6th of May. Here's a description of the film, along with a documentary about Earfilms that also gives you a short taste of what they're like.

In 2056 a great flood devastated the World, leaving just one city standing — Lhaytar — a society built under the supreme control of one corporation. Here, workers of the corporation are denied the freedom to breed, and even to dream. We follow deflated worker Jack Richards, an overworked giant of a man lost in the system — until one day he encounters a message left in the space between the waking and sleeping worlds and a strange new reality opens up for him.

Haunting and magical, this is a story about the power of the dreamer and the desire to find your strength in a world that makes you feel small.

Here's a link to the Earfilms website:

You can also follow them on their facebook page for info on future events:

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Friday 26 April 2013

Dire Straits - Brothers in Arms

I heard this on the radio the other day, obviously I've heard it before but never really paid any attention to the lyrics.  The presenter claimed it was specifically about the American Civil war, which made me listen in closely. Although I'm glad he said it, I'm not sure he was right as it appears to be about war in general and the contrast of the destruction and the comradeship it brings.  Absolutely captivating, I'm posting it here along with the lyrics just in case anyone else is like me and has heard it a thousand times with ever noticing what it was about!

These mist covered mountains
Are a home now for me
But my home is the lowlands
And always will be
Someday you'll return to
Your valleys and your farms
And you'll no longer burn to be
Brothers in arms

Through these fields of destruction
Baptisms of fire
I've witnessed your suffering
As the battle raged higher
And though they did hurt me so bad
In the fear and alarm
You did not desert me
My brothers in arms

There's so many different worlds
So many different suns
And we have just one world
But we live in different ones

Now the sun's gone to hell and
The moon's riding high
Let me bid you farewell
Every man has to die
But it's written in the starlight
And every line in your palm
We are fools to make war
On our brothers in arms

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Mrs. Thatcher - Blaming the Symptom, Avoiding the Cause

"In 1983, Thatcher sent the SAS to train the "coalition" in its own distinctive brand of terrorism. Seven-man SAS teams arrived from Hong Kong, and British soldiers set about training "resistance fighters" in laying minefields in a country devastated by genocide and the world's highest rate of death and injury as a result of landmines.
I reported this at the time, and more than 16,000 people wrote to Thatcher in protest. "I confirm," she replied to opposition leader Neil Kinnock, "that there is no British government involvement of any kind in training, equipping or co-operating with the Khmer Rouge or those allied to them." The lie was breathtaking. In 1991, the government of John Major admitted to parliament that the SAS had indeed trained the "coalition".  "We liked the British," a Khmer Rouge fighter later told me. "They were very good at teaching us to set booby traps. Unsuspecting people, like children in paddy fields, were the main victims.""
             John Pilger

There are two points I'd like to make with regard to Mrs. Thatcher.  Firstly, whilst not wishing to dance on anyone’s grave, she does appear to have been yet another fine example of a sociopath who rose to the highest levels of political power.   I don't think I'm being rude here, just calling a spade a spade.   As the John Pilger I'm linking to below amply demonstrates, whether it was sending the SAS to train the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, or supplying General Suharto with the weapons to carry out genocide in East Timor, Mrs. Thatcher seemed to have a very easy going attitude towards both murder and bare faced lies covering it up.1

Also all this stuff about 'protecting our boys' with regard to the Belgrano doesn't quite ring true to me either.  Not when her government spent the entire 1980's breaking the law to sell weapons to Saddam Hussein, weapons that were then used against 'our boys' during the first gulf war.  Of course they didn't know then that Britain would be going to war with Iraq, but Mr. Hussein's gassing of the Kurd's and brutal invasion of Iran might have provided a clue that arming him was a less than virtuous thing to do.2

The other point I'd like to make has less to do with the lady herself and more with the reaction to her passing, the negative reaction that is.  Whilst it's clear that Margaret Thatcher had a highly dysfunctional sense of morality, it seems kind of silly to me to place so much blame on her personally for the destruction she wrought.  We have a political system that consistently allows or even encourages moral degenerates to move to the top, to  blame whatever degenerate happens to be sitting on the throne this week seems to be misplaced, not to mention dis-empowering.  It's like blaming the puppet rather than the puppeteer.  Who is the puppeteer?  Some nefarious deep power structure that is selecting Presidents and Prime-ministers?  Quite possibly so, but it seems to me that the real puppeteer is the nature of government itself, that we excuse extortion, theft and violence when it is carried out by an entity known as 'The State.'

Blaming the man (or woman) at the top for the crimes of the State is like blaming Tony Soprano for the crimes of the Mafia, it's getting the cart before the horse.   Everyone can recognise that the Mafia wouldn't suddenly become a good organisation if only we could democratically elect the right folks to run it, it is by its very nature a violent criminal gang where the worst kind of people will always rise to the top.  It's obvious to all that any attempt at reform would be futile, the problem is we don't see that trying to reform the criminal gang called government is equally as futile.

From now on I'm intending to blog more on what society minus the state might look like, and how we might get ourselves to such a position.

1. Link to John Pilger article at Stop the War Coalition:

2. See Mark Curtis' book, 'Web of Deceit – Britain's Real Role in the World'

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Saturday 20 April 2013

Ron Finley - Urban Food Forest

“You see I'm an artist. Gardening is my graffiti, I grow my art.”
                                                   Ron Findley

Depressed at the lack of availability of real food in South Central LA ("The drive through's are killing more people than the drive by's"), Ron Finley started growing an Urban Garden upon the public waste land beside his house.  Having overcome opposition from the city authorities (yes really) he's now aiming to start a revolution on the thousands of acres of Los Angles' waste land, changing peoples perception of food along the way.  Very inspiring project!

Link to a a ten minute Ted talk by Ron Finley on his urban garden art:

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George Ought to Help - A Thought Experiment on the Legitimacy of the State

"If, then, taxation is compulsory, and is therefore indistinguishable from theft, it follows that the State, which subsists on taxation, is a vast criminal organisation far more formidable and successful than any "private" Mafia in history."
             Murray Rothbard

The following two videos (the second is the squeal to the first) offer up a thought experiment exploring the legitimacy of the State, its policies of taxation and its foundations in violence.  On this blog I often post about all the nefarious things States do and speculate as to the deep power structures that may lie behind them. I don't know who's ultimately pulling the strings of this world, whether there's a conspiracy run by secretive Illuminati type group, a more poly-centric corporate power structure or just politicians short sightedly bumbling along from one genocidal disaster to the next.  Whilst it's important and also fascinating to speculate on such things, for any deep power structure to exert power over us they must first convince us of one thing, and that is that violence is acceptable when it's carried out by a group called 'The State'.

Margaret Thatcher's famous line that 'there is no such thing as society' has been endlessly quoted since her passing.   I want to suggest something different, I want to suggest that there is actually no such thing as the State, that it is a mythical entity no more real than dragons or unicorns and is simply a way in which we legitimising violence.  You may think that the State is necessary, that civilisation may collapse and burn without it and you may of course be right.  But given the inherent and unlimited violence from which it draws its power, would it not be worth at least exploring to see if there is an alternative?

Here we have the film 'George Ought to help'

And here we have the follow up, the disscusion that took place between two friends after watching the film

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Wednesday 3 April 2013

The European Tower of Babel

Here's the latest creepy European Parliament propaganda film, this time they're claiming to be the defenders of free speech in Europe.  I really have no idea what this means, are they suggesting that various nation state governments would have outlawed freedom of speech by now if it wasn't for intervention by wise European overlords?   There seems to be something flawed with the premiss that 'nation states can limit freedom, therefore we will create a super-state to protect freedom', a plan that could go super wrong!

As the European economy continues its meltdown and bank deposits are raided in Cyprus, my guess would be that the real message here is 'Say what you like, we don't care, we're going to do what we want anyway.'   It's only primitive dictatorships that directly limit freedom of speech, the more sophisticate ones allow people to say whatever they want, but just ensure it has no impact, creating the illusion of freedom.   No one rebels if they thing they are free.

Here's the video, watch it if you can stomach it:

Ok, enough of that, now lets ask another question about what freedom of speech in the European Union really means.

The above is a picture of the European Parliament building in Strasbourg, the Louise Weiss building.  A bit like the second Death Star it's left unfinished, apparently to reflect the unfinished nature of the European project.  What could it be based upon, a Colosseum perhaps?

Maybe, but here's another possibility.

The painting below is Pieter Brueghel's sixteenth century depiction of the Tower of Babel, the tower described in the book of Genesis.  The one that people built high up into the sky before God intervened to stop it, ensuring everyone spoke different languages ever after.  Although there are comparisons it would be a stretch to say that this is clearly the inspiration for the EU parliament.

Well maybe not, here's an EU poster depicting the parliament, I don't think there can be any doubt that this is clearly based upon Brueghel's painting of the Tower.  It is therefore in no way a stretch to suggest that this is where the architecture of the parliament building itself draws inspiration from.  

Is there something a little bit odd about this?  That the Parliament building of predominantly Christian Europe is based on a tower that God himself halted the construction of?  The slogan 'Europe: Many Tongues One Voice' takes on a whole different and sinister meaning when viewed in this context.  We could also ask about the upside down pentagrams, why a small group stand apart from the others and why European's (with the exception of the baby) are depicted as block heads.

Just in case you're still not sure, here they are side by side.

The Vigilant Citizen has written about this and you can read his more comprehensive article here:

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Monday 1 April 2013

Jail House Rap

One of the things I'm interested in exploring on this blog are the cultural themes being projected by the entertainment (particularly music) industry, and questioning whether there is a deeper agenda behind them.  The anonymous letter I'm linking to below appeared last year on a hip hop site and apparently caused quite a stir.   Essentially it claims that in the early 1990's the then fledgling US prison industrial complex got into bed with the music industry, pushing it towards 'gangster rap'.   The motivation was that music company executives bought shares in private prison corporations who profit from having as many people as possible behind bars.  Music glorifying criminality was used to create a cultural shift that would lead to more young people ending up in jail.   Here's an exert:
“He explained that the companies we work for had invested millions into the building of privately owned prisons and that our positions of influence in the music industry would actually impact the profitability of these investments. I remember many of us in the group immediately looking at each other in confusion. At the time, I didn’t know what a private prison was but I wasn't the only one. Sure enough, someone asked what these prisons were and what any of this had to do with us. We were told that these prisons were built by privately owned companies who received funding from the government based on the number of inmates. The more inmates, the more money the government would pay these prisons. It was also made clear to us that since these prisons are privately owned, as they become publicly traded, we’d be able to buy shares. Most of us were taken back by this. Again, a couple of people asked what this had to do with us. At this point, my industry colleague who had first opened the meeting took the floor again and answered our questions. He told us that since our employers had become silent investors in this prison business, it was now in their interest to make sure that these prisons remained filled. Our job would be to help make this happen by marketing music which promotes criminal behavior, rap being the music of choice.”
You can read the full letter here:

Could it be a hoax? Very definitely so. However from the work of Vigilant Citizen and others it does appear to me that the entertainment industry is often pushing themes that serve a deeper and quite nefarious agenda.  What interests me most though is that these two things, gangster rap and private prisons, do appear to be working hand in hand whether it's intentional or not.  If it is a hoax it's one that makes a powerful statement about the horrible economic incentives that are set up when it becomes profitable to have as many people as possible behind bars.

Here's an RT interview with Ana Kasparian on the rise of the Prison Industrial Complex in the United States, she discusses other non-speculative ways in which this entity seeks to increase the number of its customers.  A warning to other countries, particularly the UK, on the effects of prisons for profit.

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