Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
A new Publix Supermarket opened in Hudson, Florida.
It has an automatic water mister to keep the produce fresh.
Just before it goes on, you hear the distant sound of thunder and the smell of fresh rain.
When you pass the milk cases, you hear cows mooing and you experience the scent of fresh cut hay.
In the meat department there is the aroma of charcoal grilled steaks and brats.
In the liquor department, the fresh, clean, crisp smell of tapped Miller Lite.
When you approach the egg case, you hear hens cluck and cackle and the air is filled with the pleasing aroma of bacon and eggs frying.
The bread department features the tantalizing smell of fresh baked bread and cookies.
I don't buy toilet paper there anymore.
Monday, June 28, 2010
Russian Spy Ring Suspects Busted! 10 Alleged Secret Agents Arrested in U.S.
Accused Russian Spies Allegedly Used Cold War Tactics to Send Information to Moscow
The allegations are shocking: four couples living in the U.S. under assumed false identities while secretly working as covert Russian spies on long-term, "deep-cover" assignments to obtain information on nuclear weapons.
They are part of a clandestine network that used a series of cold war tactics such as encrypted Morse code messages, brush passes and invisible writing to send intelligence back to the Russian government, the FBI said today as it announced the results of a multi-year investigation into the alleged spy ring.
Charged are Richard and Cynthia Murphy of New Jersey, Donald Howard Heathfield and Tracey Lee Ann Foley of Boston ,Massachusetts, Michael Zottoli and Patricia Mills of Arlington, Virginia , and Juan Lazaro and Vicky Pelaez of Yonkers, New York.
Also charged is Christopher Metsos, who remains at large and is alleged to be one of the main facilitators for the group and a trained agent living outside the U.S. According to the complaint, Metsos purports to be a Canadian citizen and regularly traveled to U.S. locations to meet with the other defendants, including numerous meetings in New York City in places such as coffee shops and book stores.
Two additional defendants, Anna Chapman and Mikhail Semenko, were also arrested Sunday for allegedly aiding in the same suspected Russian spy ring.
The arrests come just days after Russian President Dmitry Medvedev met President Barack Obama in Washington, DC and shared hamburgers and French fries at a Virginia restaurant, not far from where Zottoli and Mills were living.
The couples are charged with conspiring to act as unregistered agents of Russia and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
The court documents read like a 1960's cold war spy novel: The accused spies allegedly used steganography, hiding secretive data in an image, and radiograms, bursts of data sent by a radio transmitter that resemble the sound of Morse code, as part of their secret communications with the Russian government.
The criminal complaint references buried money in upstate New York and clandestine meetings with the Russian government in South America for payments.
And there are allegations of fabricated birth certificates, Irish and Latino surnames, and fake college diplomas.
The Department of Justice revealed the depths of the multi-year investigation in court documents unsealed today, detailing the covert video and audio recordings inside the alleged spies' homes, monitoring of phone calls and e-mails, and secret searches that were used.
"The FBI has surreptitiously entered certain of the defendant's residences; photographed evidence and copied electronic media while inside; and then left the residence in question," according to one of the complaints.
The defendants allegedly received their directions from the Russian military intelligence division known as the "SVR." The complaint alleges that members of the group sought to establish ties with congressional aides and scientists who worked on nuclear weapons development.
According to the complaint, in the spring of 2009, officials at the SVR headquarters known as the "Moscow Center" sought information from the Murphys from individuals who were identified as U.S. foreign policy officials to "try and outline their views and most important Obama's goals which he expects to achieve during summit in July and how does this team plan to do it."
According to the FBI, some of the people the accused spies met with include a former legislative counsel for U.S. Congress, a former high ranking U.S. government national security official, a person working on bunker busting nuclear warheads, and a New York financier who is prominent in politics and a major fundraiser for an un-named political party.
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Saturday, June 26, 2010
Friday, June 25, 2010
Human race 'will be extinct within 100 years'
As the scientist who helped eradicate smallpox he certainly know a thing or two about extinction.
And now Professor Frank Fenner, emeritus professor of microbiology at the Australian National University, has predicted that the human race will be extinct within the next 100 years.
He has claimed that the human race will be unable to survive a population explosion and 'unbridled consumption.’
Fenner told The Australian newspaper that 'homo sapiens will become extinct, perhaps within 100 years.'
'A lot of other animals will, too,' he added.
'It's an irreversible situation. I think it's too late. I try not to express that because people are trying to do something, but they keep putting it off.'
Since humans entered an unofficial scientific period known as the Anthropocene - the time since industrialisation - we have had an effect on the planet that rivals any ice age or comet impact, he said.
Fenner, 95, has won awards for his work in helping eradicate the variola virus that causes smallpox and has written or co-written 22 books.
He announced the eradication of the disease to the World Health Assembly in 1980 and it is still regarded as one of the World Health Organisation's greatest achievements.
He was also heavily involved in helping to control Australia's myxomatosis problem in rabbits.
Last year official UN figures estimated that the world’s population is currently 6.8 billion. It is predicted to exceed seven billion by the end of 2011.
Fenner blames the onset of climate change for the human race’s imminent demise.
He said: 'We'll undergo the same fate as the people on Easter Island.
'Climate change is just at the very beginning. But we're seeing remarkable changes in the weather already.'
'The Aborigines showed that without science and the production of carbon dioxide and global warming, they could survive for 40,000 or 50,000 years.
‘But the world can't. The human species is likely to go the same way as many of the species that we've seen disappear.'
A map of the world from an atlas which concentrates on population rather than land mass released last year. The Earth's population is due to hit 7bn by next year
Retired professor Stephen Boyden, a colleague of Professor Fenner, said that while there was deep pessimism among some ecologists, others had a more optimistic view.
'Frank may well be right, but some of us still harbour the hope that there will come about an awareness of the situation and, as a result the revolutionary changes necessary to achieve ecological sustainability.'
Simon Ross, the vice-chairman of the Optimum Population Trust, said: 'Mankind is facing real challenges including climate change, loss of bio-diversity and unprecedented growth in population.'
Professor Fenner's chilling prediction echoes recent comments by Prince Charles who last week warned of ‘monumental problems’ if the world’s population continues to grow at such a rapid pace.
And it comes after Professor Nicholas Boyle of Cambridge University said that a 'Doomsday' moment will take place in 2014 - and will determine whether the 21st century is full of violence and poverty or will be peaceful and prosperous.
in the last 500 years there has been a cataclysmic 'Great Event' of international significance at the start of each century, he claimed.
In 2006 another esteemed academic, Professor James Lovelock, warned that the world's population may sink as low as 500 million over the next century due to global warming.
He claimed that any attempts to tackle climate change will not be able to solve the problem, merely buy us time.
|Posted By: Anthony Jay Henhawk Jr.|
|To: Members in First Nations & Aboriginal Rights|
Oil Rain In Gulf: BP Spill Update
The news from the gulf only gets sadder and more infuriating. It's now raining oil. An amateur video has surfaced on youtube http://www.youtube.
In the video, the camera operators walk up and down the street during a light rain storm. The cloudy, foamy, rainbow effect of oil on a wet surface is clear as a narrator confirms the visuals. The video lasts approximately one minute and is filmed across both sides of about half a residential block. Evidence of oil in the water appears everywhere in the video.
Strictly speaking, oil does not evaporate into the sky, which would be required before it could then be rained back down to earth. However, as reported by The Huffington Post, the dispersant used by British Petroleum in its attempt to corral the oil spill seems to have aided oil-seawater emulsification, a key to the process of oil becoming part of rain.
Thus, not chocolate rain, but a far more disturbing oil rain in the Louisiana.
June 2, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
By Michael T. Klare
23 June, 2010
BP-Style Extreme Energy Nightmares to Come. Four Scenarios for the Next Energy Mega-Disaster
On June 15th, in their testimony before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the chief executives of America’s leading oil companies argued that BP’s Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico was an aberration -- something that would not have occurred with proper corporate oversight and will not happen again once proper safeguards are put in place. This is fallacious, if not an outright lie. The Deep Horizon explosion was the inevitable result of a relentless effort to extract oil from ever deeper and more hazardous locations. In fact, as long as the industry continues its relentless, reckless pursuit of “extreme energy” -- oil, natural gas, coal, and uranium obtained from geologically, environmentally, and politically unsafe areas -- more such calamities are destined to occur.
At the onset of the modern industrial era, basic fuels were easy to obtain from large, near-at-hand energy deposits in relatively safe and friendly locations. The rise of the automobile and the spread of suburbia, for example, were made possible by the availability of cheap and abundant oil from large reservoirs in California, Texas, and Oklahoma, and from the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico. But these and equivalent deposits of coal, gas, and uranium have been depleted.
This means the survival of our energy-centric civilization increasingly relies on supplies obtained from risky locations -- deep underground, far at sea, north of the Arctic circle, in complex geological formations, or in unsafe political environments. That guarantees the equivalent of two, three, four, or more Gulf-oil-spill-style disasters in our energy future.
Back in 2005, the CEO of Chevron, David O’Reilly, put the situation about as bluntly as an oil executive could. “One thing is clear,” he said, “the era of easy oil is over. Demand is soaring like never before… At the same time, many of the world’s oil and gas fields are maturing. And new energy discoveries are mainly occurring in places where resources are difficult to extract, physically, economically, and even politically.” O’Reilly promised then that his firm, like the other energy giants, would do whatever it took to secure this “difficult energy” to satisfy rising global demand. And he proved a man of his word.
As a result, BP, Chevron, Exxon, and the rest of the energy giants launched a drive to obtain traditional fuels from hazardous locations, setting the stage for the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster and those sure to follow. As long as the industry stays on this course, rather than undertaking the transition to an alternative energy future, more such catastrophes are inevitable, no matter how sophisticated the technology or scrupulous the oversight.
The only question is: What will the next Deepwater Horizon disaster look like (other than another Deepwater Horizon disaster)? The choices are many, but here are four possible scenarios for future Gulf-scale energy calamities. None of these is inevitable, but each has a plausible basis in fact.
Scenario 1: Newfoundland -- Hibernia Platform Destroyed by Iceberg
Approximately 190 miles off the coast of Newfoundland in what locals call “Iceberg Alley” sits the Hibernia oil platform, the world’s largest offshore drilling facility. Built at a cost of some $5 billion, Hibernia consists of a 37,000-ton “topsides” facility mounted on a 600,000-ton steel-and-concrete gravity base structure (GBS) resting on the ocean floor, some 260 feet below the surface. This mammoth facility, normally manned by 185 crew members, produces about 135,000 barrels of oil per day. Four companies (ExxonMobil, Chevron, Murphy Oil, and Statoil) plus the government of Canada participate in the joint venture established to operate the platform.
The Hibernia platform is reinforced to withstand a direct impact by one of the icebergs that regularly sail through this stretch of water, located just a few hundred miles from where the Titanic infamously hit an iceberg and sank in 1912. Sixteen giant steel ribs protrude from the GBS, positioned in such a way as to absorb the blow of an iceberg and distribute it over the entire structure. However, the GBS itself is hollow, and contains a storage container for 1.3 million barrels of crude oil -- about five times the amount released in the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill.
The owners of the Hibernia platform insist that the design will withstand a blow from even the largest iceberg. As global warming advances and the Greenland glaciers melt, however, massive chunks of ice will be sent floating into the North Atlantic on a path past Hibernia. Add increased storm activity (another effect of global warming) to an increase in iceberg frequency and you have a formula for overwhelming the Hibernia’s defenses.
Here’s the scenario: It’s the stormy winter of 2018, not an uncommon situation in the North Atlantic at that time of year. Winds exceed 80 miles per hour, visibility is zilch, and iceberg-spotter planes are grounded. Towering waves rise to heights of 50 feet or more, leaving harbor-bound the giant tugs the Hibernia’s owners use to nudge icebergs from the platform’s path. Evacuation of the crew by ship or helicopter is impossible.
Without warning, a gigantic, storm-propelled iceberg strikes the Hibernia, rupturing the GBS and spilling more than one million barrels of oil into rough waters. The topside facility is severed from the base structure and plunges into the ocean, killing all 185 crew members. Every connection to the undersea wells is ruptured, and 135,000 barrels of oil start flowing into the Atlantic every day (approximately twice the amount now coming from the BP leak in the Gulf of Mexico). The area is impossible to reach by plane or ship in the constant bad weather, meaning emergency repairs can’t be undertaken for weeks -- not until at least five million additional barrels of oil have poured into the ocean. As a result, one of the world’s most prolific fishing grounds -- the Grand Banks off Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Cape Cod -- is thoroughly poisoned.
Does this sound extreme? Think again. On February 15, 1982, a giant drillship, the Ocean Ranger (the “Ocean Danger” to its habitués), was operating in the very spot Hibernia now occupies when it was struck by 50-foot waves in a storm and sank, taking the lives of 84 crew members. Because no drilling was under way at the time, there were no environmental consequences, but the loss of the Ocean Ranger -- a vessel very much like the Deepwater Horizon -- should be a reminder of just how vulnerable otherwise strong structures can be to the North Atlantic’s winter fury.
Scenario 2: Nigeria -- America’s Oil Quagmire
Nigeria is now America’s fifth leading supplier of oil (after Canada, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela). Long worried about the possibility that political turmoil in the Middle East might diminish the oil flow from Saudi Arabia just as Mexico’s major fields were reaching a state of depletion, American officials have worked hard to increase Nigerian imports. However, most of that country’s oil comes from the troubled Niger Delta region, whose impoverished residents receive few benefits but all of the environmental damage from the oil extraction there. As a result, they have taken up arms in a bid for a greater share of the revenues the Nigerian government collects from the foreign energy companies doing the drilling. Leading this drive is the Movement for the Emancipation for the Niger Delta (MEND), a ragtag guerrilla group that has demonstrated remarkable success in disrupting oil company operations.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) rates Nigeria’s innate oil-production capacity at about 2.7 million barrels per day. Thanks to insurgent activity in the Delta, however, actual output has fallen significantly below this.
“Since December 2005, Nigeria has experienced increased pipeline vandalism, kidnappings, and militant takeovers of oil facilities in the Niger Delta,” the department reported in May 2009. “[K]idnappings of oil workers for ransom are common and security concerns have led some oil services firms to pull out of the country.”
Washington views the insurgency as a threat to America’s “energy security,” and so a reason for aiding the Nigerian military. “Disruption of supply from Nigeria would represent a major blow to U.S. oil security,” the State Department noted in 2006. In August 2009, on a visit to Nigeria, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton promised even more military aid for oil protection purposes.
Here, then, is scenario #2: It’s 2013. The Delta insurgency has only grown, driving Nigeria’s oil output down to a third of its capacity. Global oil demand is substantially higher and rising, while production slips everywhere. Gasoline prices have reached $5 per gallon in the U.S. with no end in sight, and the economy seems headed toward yet another deep recession.
The barely functioning civilian government in Abuja, the capital, is overthrown by a Muslim-dominated military junta that promises to impose order and restore the oil flow in the Delta. Some Christian elements of the military promptly defect, joining MEND. Oil facilities across the country are suddenly under attack; oil pipelines are bombed, while foreign oil workers are kidnapped or killed in record numbers. The foreign oil companies running the show begin to shut down operations. Global oil prices go through the roof.
When a dozen American oil workers are executed and a like number held hostage by a newly announced rebel group, the president addresses the nation from the Oval Office, declares that U.S. energy security is at risk, and sends 20,000 Marines and Army troops into the Delta to join the Special Operations forces already there. Major port facilities are quickly secured, but the American expeditionary force soon finds itself literally in an oil quagmire, an almost unimaginable landscape of oil spills in which they find themselves fighting a set of interlocked insurgencies that show no sign of fading. Casualties rise as they attempt to protect far-flung pipelines in an impenetrable swamp not unlike the Mekong Delta of Vietnam War fame.
Sound implausible? Consider this: in May 2008, the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command and the Joint Forces Command conducted a crisis simulation at the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, that involved precisely such a scenario, also set in 2013.
The simulation, “Unified Quest 2008,” was linked to the formation of the U.S. Africa Command (Africom), the new combat organization established by President Bush in February 2007 to oversee American military operations in Africa. An oil-related crisis in Nigeria, it was suggested, represented one of the more likely scenarios for intervention by U.S. forces assigned to Africom. Although the exercise did not explicitly endorse a military move of this sort, it left little doubt that such a response would be Washington’s only practical choice.
Scenario 3: Brazil -- Cyclone Hits “Pre-Salt” Oil Rigs
In November 2007, Brazil’s state-run oil company, Petróleo Brasileiro (Petrobras), announced a remarkable discovery: in a tract of the South Atlantic some 180 miles off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, it had found a giant oil reservoir buried beneath a mile and a half of water and a thick layer of salt. Called “pre-salt” oil because of its unique geological positioning, the deposit was estimated to hold 8 to 12 billion barrels of oil, making this the biggest discovery in the Western Hemisphere in 40 years. Further test drilling by Petrobras and its partners revealed that the initial find -- at a field called Tupi -- was linked to other deepwater “pre-salt” reservoirs, bringing the total offshore potential to 50 billion barrels or more. (To put that in perspective, Saudi Arabia is believed to possess reserves of 264 billion barrels and the United States, 30 billion.)
With this discovery, Brazil could “jump from an intermediate producer to among the world’s largest producers,” said Dilma Rousseff, chief cabinet official under President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and thought to be his most likely successor.
To ensure that the Brazilian state exercises ultimate control over the development of these reservoirs, President da Silva -- “Lula,” as he is widely known -- and Rousseff have introduced legislation in the Brazilian Congress giving Petrobras control over all new fields in the basin. In addition, Lula has proposed that profits from the pre-salt fields be channeled into a new social fund to alleviate poverty and underdevelopment in the country. All this has given the government a huge stake in the accelerated development of the pre-salt fields.
Extracting oil a mile and half under the water and from beneath two-and-a-half miles of shifting sand and salt will, however, require the utilization of technology even more advanced than that employed on the Deepwater Horizon. In addition, the pre-salt fields are interspersed with layers of high-pressure gas (as appears to have been the case in the Gulf), increasing the risk of a blow-out. Brazil does not experience hurricanes as does the Gulf of Mexico, but in 2004, its coastline was ravaged by a surprise subtropical cyclone that achieved hurricane strength. Some climatologists believe that hurricane-like storms of this sort, once largely unknown in the South Atlantic, will become more common as global warming only increases.
Which brings us to scenario #3: It’s 2020, by which time the pre-salt area off Rio will be host to hundreds of deepwater drilling rigs. Imagine, then, a subtropical cyclone with hurricane-force winds and massive waves that suddenly strikes this area, toppling dozens of the rigs and damaging most of the others, wiping out in a matter of hours an investment of over $200 billion. Given a few days warning, most of the crews of these platforms have been evacuated. Freak winds, however, down several helicopters, killing some 50 oil workers and flight crew members. Adding to the horror, attempts to seal so many undersea wells at such depths fail, and oil in historically unprecedented quantities begins gushing into the South Atlantic. As the cyclone grows to full strength, giant waves carry the oil inexorably toward shore.
Since the storm-driven assault cannot be stopped,
Rio de Janeiro’s famous snow-white beaches are soon blanketed in a layer of sticky black petroleum, and in a matter of weeks, parts of Brazil’s coastal waters have become a “dead ocean.” Clean-up efforts, when finally initiated, prove exceedingly difficult and costly, adding immeasurably to the financial burden of the Brazilian state, now saddled with a broken and bankrupt Petrobras. Meanwhile, the struggle to seal all the leaking pre-salt wells in the deep Atlantic proves a Herculean task as, month after month, oil continues to gush into the Atlantic.
Scenario 4: East China Sea -- A Clash Over Subsea Gas
At one time, most wars between states were fought over disputed borders or contested pieces of land. Today, most boundaries are fixed by international treaty and few wars are fought over territory. But a new type of conflict is arising: contests over disputed maritime boundaries in areas that harbor valuable subsea resources, particularly oil and natural gas deposits. Such disputes have already occurred in the Persian Gulf, the Caspian Sea, the East and South China Seas, and other circumscribed bodies of water. In each case, the surrounding states claim vast offshore tracts that overlap, producing -- in a world that may be increasingly starved for energy -- potentially explosive disputes.
One of them is between China and Japan over their mutual boundary in the East China Sea. Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, which both countries have signed, each is allowed to exercise control over an “exclusive economic zone” (EEZ) extending 200 nautical miles (about 230 standard miles) from its coastline. But the East China Sea is only about 360 miles across at its widest point between the two countries. You see the problem.
In addition, the U.N. convention allows mainland states to claim an extended EEZ stretching to their outer continental shelf (OCS). In China’s case, that means nearly all the way to Japan -- or so say the Chinese. Japan insists that the offshore boundary between the two countries should fall midway between them, or about 180 miles from either shore. This means that there are now two competing boundaries in the East China Sea. As fate would have it, in the gray area between them houses a promising natural gas field called Chunxiao by the Chinese and Shirakaba by the Japanese. Both countries claim that the field lies within their EEZ, and is theirs alone to exploit.
For years, Chinese and Japanese officials have been meeting to resolve this dispute -- to no avail. In the meantime, each side has taken steps to begin the exploitation of the undersea gas field. China has installed drilling rigs right up to the median line claimed by Japan as the boundary between them and is now drilling for gas there; Japan has conducted seismic surveys in the gray area between the two lines. China claims that Japan’s actions represent an illegal infringement; Japan says that the Chinese rigs are sucking up gas from the Japanese side of the median line, and so stealing their property. Each side sees this dispute through a highly nationalistic prism and appears unwilling to back down. Both sides have deployed military forces in the contested area, seeking to demonstrate their resolve to prevail in the dispute.
Here, then, is Scenario #4: It’s 2022. Successive attempts to resolve the boundary dispute through negotiations have failed. China has installed a string of drilling platforms along the median line claimed by Japan and, according to Japanese officials, has extended undersea drill pipes deep into Japanese territory. An ultra-nationalistic, right-wing government has taken power in Japan, vowing finally to assert control over Japanese sovereign territory. Japanese drill ships, accompanied by naval escorts and fighter planes, are sent into the area claimed by China. The Chinese respond with their warships and order the Japanese to withdraw. The two fleets converge and begin to target each other with guns, missiles, and torpedoes.
At this point, the “fog of war” (in strategic theorist Carl von Clausewitz’s famous phrase) takes over. As a Chinese vessel steams perilously close to a Japanese ship in an attempt to drive it off, the captain of that vessel panics, and orders his crew to open fire; other Japanese crews, disobeying orders from superior officers, do the same. Before long, a full-scale naval battle ensues, with several sunken ships and hundreds of casualties. Japanese aircraft then attack the nearby Chinese drill rigs, producing hundreds of additional casualties and yet another deep-sea environmental disaster. At this point, with both sides bringing in reinforcements and girding for full-scale war, the U.S. president makes an emergency visit to the region in a desperate effort to negotiate a cease-fire.
Such a scenario is hardly implausible. Since September 2005, China has deployed a naval squadron in the East China Sea, sending its ships right up to the median line -- a boundary that exists in Japanese documents, but is not, of course, visible to the naked eye (and so can be easily overstepped). On one occasion, Japanese naval aircraft flew close to a Chinese ship in what must have seemed a menacing fashion, leading the crew to train its antiaircraft guns on the approaching plane. Fortunately, no shots were fired. But what would have happened if the Japanese plane had come a little bit closer, or the Chinese captain was a bit more worried? One of these days, as those gas supplies become even more valuable and the hair-trigger quality of the situation increases, the outcome may not be so benign.
These are, of course, only a few examples of why, in a world ever more reliant on energy supplies acquired from remote and hazardous locations, BP-like catastrophes are sure to occur. While none of these specific calamities are guaranteed to happen, something like them surely will -- unless we take dramatic steps now to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and speed the transition to a post-carbon world. In such a world, most of our energy would come from renewable wind, solar, and geothermal sources that are commonplace and don’t have to be tracked down a mile or more under the water or in the icebound north. Such resources generally would not be linked to the sort of disputed boundaries or borderlands that can produce future resource wars.
Until then, prepare yourselves. The disaster in the Gulf is no anomaly. It’s an arrow pointing toward future nightmares.
Michael T. Klare is a professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College, TomDispatch.com regular, and the author, most recently, of Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet. A documentary movie version of his previous book, Blood and Oil, is available from the Media Education Foundation. To catch him discussing our dystopian energy future on the latest TomCast audio interview, click here, or to download it to your iPod, click here.
Copyright 2010 Michael T. Klare
Firefly (Lilia Adecer Cajilog)
Tawo Seed Carrier
South Pasadena, CA 91031
We received this information from Gordon Edwards, a highly credible and persistent critic of the nuclear industry. It included an attachment which we are including. It's quite a bit of reading but a very important topic.
----- Original Message -----
From: Gordon Edwards
To: Gordon Edwards
Sent: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 7:39 AM
Subject: Alpha contamination at Bruce
The following correspondence has to do with the discovery
that hundreds of men working on the "refurbishment" of the
Bruce reactors have had their bodies "accidentally"?
contaminated by?radioactive materials that give off
non-penetrating, but?highly dangerous,?alpha radiation.
The authorities have suddenly awoken to the fact (obvious
to anyone who knows about the various types of radiation)
that other workers in other plants may also have experienced
alpha contamination of their bodies.
The man identified as ?xxxxxxxx ?is a researcher, working
for one of the parties currently represented in the Ontario
This alarming discovery of irresponsible behaviour on the
part of Canadian nuclear authorities has serious implications
for the long-term health and safety of the workers at Bruce who
have been contaminated, as well as to the workers at Pickering
and Point Lepreau who have very likely also been so ?exposed ,
as well as to the workers in the Trois-Rivi?res area who will be
involved in the refurbishment of the Gentilly-2 reactor if that?
ill-advised project goes ahead.
June 23 2010
This situation is absolutely disgusting. ?It shows a degree of
incompetence and callousness on the part of the entire Canadian?
nuclear establishment, including CNSC, OPG, Bruce Power, ... ,
that is a major disgrace.
My understanding is that these men are not atomic workers, for
the most part, but just ordinary tradesmen who have been hired
to work on the refurbishment. ?They were not given protective
equipment to wear nor were they trained specifically on the
question of internal alpha contamination as opposed to external?
Now these men's bodies are contaminated with very long-lived?
radioactive materials which are lodged directly in their bodily
tissues, so that they will be irradiated internally for years to come.
These radioactive materials include isotopes of plutonium, americium,
curium, neptunium, and other transuranic elements which do not
exist in nature but are created inside the nuclear reactor. ?They are
among the most radio-toxic elements on earth.
It seems the supervisors themselves were not sufficiently trained to realize
that there are ALWAYS long-lived radioactive materials called alpha-
emitters in the primary cooling system of decrepit old reactors.
When these pipes are cut apart and manipulated some of this alpha-
emitting material goes into the atmosphere and gets inhaled into?
worker's lungs and deposited on their skin and clothing so that their
bodies become contaminated with alpha emitters. Miniscule amounts
can infiltrate into their skin pores or into their hair follicles as well as
being absorbed directly through the skin and/or ingested by contamination
Alpha emitters are among the deadliest of all radioactive materials. ?Per
unit of radiation energy deposited in tissue, alpha radiation is about 20
times more damaging than gamma or beta radiation. ?Countless thousands
of people have been killed by alpha emitters such as: radon gas, radium-226.
polonium-210 (which is responsible for up to 90% of all deaths attributed to
cigarette smoking), and depleted uranium (from DU munitions). ?These are
all alpha-emitting substances.
This episode at Bruce represents a massive failure of Canada's regulatory?
regime to?adequately protect workers (or even inform them of the risks!).
July 22 2010
Important points to note about alpha radiation:
(1) Alpha radiation is a non-penetrating form of radioactivity.
?? ? It is harmless outside the body, but extremely damaging to
?? ? living cells once it gets inside the body -- usually through
?? ? inhalation or ingestion, but also through cuts or lesions on
?? ? the skin or (in the case of the more energetic alpha emitters)
?? ? by being lodged in skin pores or hair follicles.
?? ? See http://ccnr.org/alpha_in_lung.html
?? ? See http://ccnr.org/paulson_legacy.html
(2) For decades, the Regulatory Agency (now CNSC, previously
?? ? AECB) has been extremely negligent in not requiring licensees
?? ? to acknowledge the dangers of alpha radiation, or to require?
?? ? licensees to teach the?basic facts about alpha radiation to their
?? ? workers. ?I am sure if these workers were interviewed they will
?? ? say that they knew nothing about alpha radiation, and the same
?? ? very likely goes for the supervisors. ?To allow this situation to
?? ? exist and to persist is primarily a regulatory failure -- the CNSC
?? ? has a legal obligation to "disseminate objective scientific information"
?? ?about the nature of the risks to those who may be affected. ?This has
?? ?not been done in the case of alpha radiation, for decades.
?? See for example ? ??
?? ?pages 7-10.
(4) The latency period (waiting period) for cancer and other long-term
?? ? ?biological effects to appear is typically measured in decades. ?When
?? ? ?various radiation-induced cancers and other diseases begin to appear,
?? ? ?it will be virtually impossible for these men to "prove" that their diseases
?? ? ?were caused by radiation exposure. ?Because of the relatively small
?? ? ?numbers involved, statistical methods will also not be helpful.
(3) Given these facts, one can make the following reasonable?
?? ? ?recommendations:
?? ? ?A. Bruce Power should provide no-fault insurance, at company
?? ? ? ? ? expense, for any workers who have been or may have been
?? ? ? ? ? exposed to alpha contamination, and who subsequently
?? ? ? ? ? develop any of a large range of cancers that are know to be
?? ? ? ? ? potentially radiation-caused. ?The U.S. Government has
?? ? ? ? ? adopted this kind of "no-questions-asked" compensation for
?? ? ? ? ? workers in the nation's uranium enrichment plants (where,
?? ? ? ? ? by the way, the radiation exposures are mainly alpha).
?? ? ?B. Bruce Power should identify and publish a list of the exact?
?? ? ? ? ?radioactive isotopes?that are involved in the internal alpha?
?? ? ? ? ?doses of these workers. ?In other words, what?different
?? ? ? ? ?isotopes of plutonium, what different isotopes of?americium, etc.
?? ? ? ? ?This is important because each radioisotope has its own
?? ? ? ? ?biochemistry and will tend to go to different parts of the body,
?? ? ? ? ?which greatly affects the biological effectiveness of the doses?
?? ? ? ??which?are delivered to the cells in that particular part of the body.
?? ? C. Bruce Power should provide each worker with a detailed personal
?? ? ? ? "body burden" -- an inventory of what radioisotopes, in what
?? ? ? ? quantities, are lodged in their bodies, together with realistic
?? ? ? ? "error bands" indicating the range of possibilities, since these
?? ? ? ? measurements are not precise.
?? ?D. Since neither Bruce Power nor the CNSC has sufficient medical
?? ? ? ? expertise (both institutions are dominated by physicists, chemists,
?? ? ? ? engineers, etc, rather than bio-medical people) and since there
?? ? ? ? is an obvious conflict of interest, the Ontario or Canadian gov't
?? ? ? ? should commission a team of outside biomedical experts to
?? ? ? ? supervise the examination, interpretation, and transmission of
?? ? ? ? biomedically important information to these workers and to the
?? ? ? ? public and their political representatives.
I'm off to Detroit for four days -- I'll be back late Saturday night.
A good scientific reference on alpha radiation is ?BEIR IV,
published by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences in 1988:
Health Risks of Radon and Other Internally Deposited Alpha-Emitters
(BEIR = Committee on the Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation)
WHAT FOLLOWS IS WHAT I RECEIVED FROM xxxxxxxxxx :
Gordon - are you up on this latest revelation of alpha contamination at Bruce?
There is some media interest in this - are there any?
key messages we should be passing along?
Is there anything particularly notable about this?
Below is an internal Bruce Power memo sent out last Friday.? Do we know how many
time the CNSC has issued corrective action against Bruce Power on this issue?? See
From: BNPD GLOBAL EMAILs
> Sent:Friday, June 18, 2010 11:35 AM
> To:BNPD-Bruce Power Users ( ALL )
> Subject:Alpha Extent of Condition Program
>?Following the discovery of alpha contamination on the Restart project,
> Bruce Power has implemented an extent of condition program to fully
> assess alpha across the site, including operations at Bruce A and B.
> This program reflects the absolute priority we place on nuclear safety
> and our commitment to having in place world class radiation protection
> for our employees. It is also being conducted on the basis of our
> commitment to full and open communication of information about alpha
> contamination and the actions we have taken to deal with it.
> Additional monitoring and control measures have already been put in
> place at Bruce A and B in the light of our experience on the Restart
> project. The area of highest probability of exposure to alpha is fuel
> handling and, as a precautionary measure, we have started to assess
> the dose that workers involved in that activity might have received.
>?Initial results for one long-time fuel handling worker at Bruce A
> indicate that dose attributable to alpha has been received.
>?Based on this first result from fuel handling, we will be sampling
> additional employees who, based on job duties, may have been exposed
> to alpha.?Results obtained from these samples will be used to develop
> additional testing criteria.Those selected for testing will be
> notified by their supervisor and briefed on the sampling procedure. It
> is expected that sampling will be completed within the next three
> weeks with preliminary results available approximately five weeks
> after the samples are submitted.
> We have shared our findings with the Canadian Nuclear Safety
> Commission and nuclear operations colleagues in Ontario Power
> Generation, NB Power and Hydro-Quebec.
> We will update you with more information as it becomes available. In
> the meantime, please address any questions you have to your
> supervisor. Considerable information on alpha is also available on the
> Bruce A Restart intranet website that is accessible through the home
> page of the Bruce Power intranet. There will also be a feature on
> alpha in the July Safety and Business Performance video.
> Approved for distribution by
> Norm Sawyer, EVP and Chief Nuclear Officer, Bruce A
> Ken Ellis, EVP and Chief Nuclear Officer, Bruce B
June 23, 2010
This very long and detailed message is forwarded for your interest. It sounds to us like a daunting but worthwhile effort. IF you have any more info, let us know.
From: "dorinda moreno"
Date: Mon, June 21, 2010 9:40 pm
To: "Mrs. Stanley"
Cc: "Eagle Strong Voice"
Frederick Douglass, the black American who overcame his slavery,
"Make a man a slave and he loses all moral accountability."
Kittoh, I definitely support the position taken by Kevin Arnett and the
International Tribunal, to which we add our information onf the
Tribunal of Conscience, Nov. 4-10, Mexico City, on displacement,
here is backdrop of the 'International Tribunal of Conscience', and also
info from the 'Civic Society' for participation (and if selected they
provide travel funds), SCROLL BELOW TO BOTTOM OF ENTIRE SCOPE OF THIS
HISTORIC ENDEAVOR; though, the ITC's efforts are not necessarily
in sync with the government entity of the civic society, rather we are
intent on observing their politic and strategize for a potential walk
and nevertheless are committed to working with and also in opposition to
representing the people's forum which is the tribunal, assembly, and
PLEASE CLICK THE LINKS BELOW FOR FILLING OUT APPLICATION FOR POSSIBLE
SELECTION AND TRAVEL FUNDS.
On 6/18/10, Camilo Perez Bustillo
Dear compañeros: We are urging all those interested in participating in
Tribunal and Alternative Forum in Mexico City in November to please
online applications at:
that you can hopefully be selected as a delegate to the "Civil
component (scheduled for Nov. 8-9 in Puerto Vallarta) of the official
This would provide coverage of the costs of your transportation and
accomodations and make it possible for you to schedule your arrival in
Mexico City Nov. 3rd in time to participate in the Tribunal, and help
maximize our possible options for participation of critical voices from
Many thanks and warm regards, un abrazo y mil gracias, Camilo
Sisters and Brothers, this is the central priority that deserves broad
support in preparing delegates and resolutions on migration/immigration
the 'International Tribunal of Conscience', that shall concentrate on
Arizona and Gaza as first test cases.
There is much work to do over the summer towards developing this
assembly and caravan that intends developing a permanent global forum on
migration and its core causes for displacement.
Please let us hear your feedback and expressions of interest and plans
Also, planned is a night of the Cultural Arts and film, and an
Ceremony that will begin the proceedings.
International Tribunal of Conscience, November 4-10, 2010, Mexico
The toxin and the antidote: with a focus honoring the Students,
Women, and Human rights Activists in Arizona in the eye of the storm,
organizing, marching, boycotting, being arrested for protecting the
rights to life and the pursuit of happiness, in their language, culture,
pride... meet with us in Mexico City in November for bringing testimony
bear of this global platform and first of a kind world tribunal which has
an intent establishing a permanent global forum on migration. Also,
important for this formation is honoring the struggles of global
and the committee has issued an special invitation for the political
prisoners, The Cuban Five, Mumia, Leonard Peltier, and Ignacio Del Valle,
Honorary Judges of the Tribunal, in addition to assessing the impact of
1070 in Arizona as its first case following requests from immigrant
groups based in Arizona and California.
JOIN US IN MEXICO CITY IN NOVEMBER: International Tribunal of Conscience
GLOBAL ALTERNATIVE FORUM: *OF PEOPLES IN MOVEMENT AND PEOPLE´S CARAVAN*
PEOPLES IN MOVEMENT FOR UNIVERSAL CITIZENSHIP:
ALL RIGHTS FOR ALL, WITHOUT BORDERS
Call issued for International Workers´ Day, May 1st 2010
INTERNATIONAL MIGRANT ALLIANCE
MEXICO CITY ORGANIZING AND HOST COMMITTEE
*Dorinda Moreno, US Liaison, Fuerza Mundial/Hitec Aztec Communications
Patricia Barba, Host Committee, Media Specialist, Colectivo Las
4/30/10, Camilo Perez Bustillo
*The International Tribunal of Conscience (ITC):*
is the first of its kind to focus on violations of the rights and dignity
migrants, refugees, and the displaced on a global scale, and seeks to
on the contributions and experiences of the Russell Tribunal, the
People´s Tribunal (PPT)of the Lelio Basso Foundation, the Latin
Tribunal on Water, the Tribunal of Migrant and Refugee Women in
the Tribunal on Sexual Violence during the armed conflict in Guatemala,
Mexico´s International Benito Juárez Tribunal and International Tribunal
Labor and Union Rights, and to act in a manner complementary to the
of the International Tribunal on Climate Justice and the Rights of
Earth recently established as a result of the People´s Summit in
Bolivia (April 2010). Its emphasis will be on investigating,
determining state and corporate responsibility, and recommending
and follow-up actions regarding violations of the rights to migrate, not
migrate, and not to be displaced, as measured both against existing
minimums in international, regional, and national law, and the ethical
foundations which underly the demands of migrant movements.
The Tribunal´s first session will be held in Quito, Ecuador Oct.8-12
the framework of the IV World Social Forum on Migration, as part of our
commitment to coordinate our efforts in Mexico City in November with
convergent efforts elsewhere. The Tribunal has already decided to assess
impact of SB 1070 in Arizona as its first case following requests along
these lines from immigrant rights groups based in Arizona and
*GLOBAL ALTERNATIVE FORUM OF PEOPLES IN MOVEMENT AND PEOPLE´S
*November 4-10 2010*
*1) **International Tribunal of Conscience
(ITC) focused on violations
of the rights and dignity of migrants, refugees, and displaced persons
(“peoples in movement”) from throughout the world, Mexico City Nov.
*2) **Third International Assembly of
Migrants, Refugees, and the
Displaced (IAMR 3), Mexico City Nov. 7-8;
3) **People´s Caravan from Mexico City to
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco to
deliver the verdict of the ITC to civil society forum and government
delegations and participate in mobilizations at the site of the IV
Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD), Nov. 9-11
The *Global Alternative Forum of Peoples in Movement* and its two key
components, the *first International Tribunal of Concience* focused on
rights of migrants, refugees, and displaced persons, and the 3rd
Assembly of Migrants, Refugees, and the Displaced* (*IAMR 3*), which
to build upon the first two Assemblies of this kind which took place in
Manila in 2008 and Athens in 2009, are being organized as grassroots,
independent responses to the Mexican government´s hosting of the IV
Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) from November 8-11.
Our description of these sectors as “peoples in movement” seeks to
to the need for convergence between efforts grounded in the struggles,
demands, and rights of the human subjects of processes of migration,
and displacement, and their inherent, shared origins in the depredations
contemporary globalized capitalism. It is such processes of intertwined
state, structural, and systemic violence which produce the upheavals of
forced movement at the heart of these phenomena.
*This is heightened in contexts such as Mexico, where violations of
rights and of broader human rights are tangled together, and jointly
the interests of transnational corporate and state sectors in the U.S.
elsewhere, through neoliberal policies such as NAFTA (the North American
Free Trade Agreement), the "Security and Prosperity Partnership of
America", Mérida Initiative (or “Plan Mexico”, emulating the worst
Colombia in the Andean region), *the "Mesoamerica
Project", CAFTA (the
Central American-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement which includes
U.S., Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador,Costa Rica, and the Dominican
Republic, which rank proportionately as among the states most impacted
migration and most dependent on remittances), the Free Trade Area
Americas (FTAA, which was intended to be the framework for the expansion
NAFTA on a continental scale, but has been blocked by the emergence of
Bolivarian Alternative for the Peoples of the Americas-ALBA, and the
strengthening of Mercosur, among other factors), etc., along with the
"managed migration" agenda of the IOM (International
Migration) and GFMD, and "Mode 4" of the WTO´s GATS (General
Trade in Services) process. The "leveraging" of remittances for
"development" is of course central to these approaches, which
do not satisfy
even the minimum human rights protections required by the UN framework,
which the GFMD is intended to undermine. *The upcoming IV GFMD to
in Mexico is intended to be a culminating step in the imposition of such
policies, with the Mexican government as a key promoter within the
South of the hegemonic migration policy paradigm summarized above, along
with the Philippines. *
Our events in November are intended to directly challenge the GFMD´s
promotion of such approaches and to repudiate its legitimacy and that of
Mexican state and government and equivalent sectors elsewhere in
of origin, transit, and destination, who seek to suppress, supplant and
co-opt the voices, demands, and struggles of “peoples in movement” and
families, communities, organizations, and allies throughout the world. *
*We hope to see you all of you in Mexico in November in a unified
to such efforts.*
CHALLENGES IN MEXICO
The Alternative Forum, Tribunal, and Assembly are also intended to
the Mexican state and government´s longstanding efforts to position
themselves *falsely* as “champions” of migrant rights (as well as the
of indigenous peoples) in forums such as the UN, the OAS, the GFMD
and related contexts. *The Mexican state and government are in fact
and indirectly responsible for creating and perpetuating the conditions
poverty, inequality, discrimination, and militarization which have
displaced millions of Mexicans, and for systematic human rights
of a broader character well documented by human rights defenders and
movements within the country, the International Citizen´s Commission for
Human Rights Observation (CCIODH), Amnesty International, Human Rights
Watch, the UN Human Rights Council, and other UN agencies and monitors.
These concerns have been reiterated in two recent (November and December
2009) sweeping judgements issued by the Inter-American Court of
Rights regarding current state responsibility for the continuing effects
the country´s “dirty war” against insurgents in the state of Guerrero in
1970´s, and for hundreds of women killed- many of them migrant workers
the maquiladoras- throughout the last 15 years as the result of
in the border city of Juárez. In this context as in so many others,
women and youth who bear the brunt of systemic violence in Mexico and
*The Mexican state and government have further undermined their
as the result of widespread electoral fraud in the 2006 national
the persistence of the ongoing war against Mexico´s indigenous peoples
the free exercise of their rights to self-determination and autonomy
the Zapatista rebellion in 1994, the militarization of the rest of the
country in the name of a supposed “war against drugs” imposed by U.S.
and intervention, and systematic human rights violations involving state
terror against workers, independent unions, women, and youth and through
imposition of neoliberal policies, which result in the dispossession of
strategic territories and resources and produce forced internal and
*The transnational migrant rights movement based in communities of
destination in the U.S. and in those of origin in Mexico is also a key
of the overall movement for human rights and authentic,
democracy in Mexico, and deeply connected to related sectors struggling
social and global justice in Latin America, the U.S., and the rest of
world, without borders.
*Our efforts in November seek to highlight the combined effects of
capitalism, racism and xenophobia evident in discriminatory policies
recently adopted in Arizona which criminalize all those “reasonably
suspected” of being undocumented immigrants,and which have also driven
outbreaks of xenophobic violence in South Africa, Italy, and Spain, and
measures targeting Islamic immigrants and their religious practices in
Switzerland, France and the Netherlands.* The subordination of migration
policies to the supposed imperatives of “free trade” and “national
post-9/11 in the U.S. “anti-terrorist” context, which has resulted in
militarization and “externalization” of the U.S. border from Mexico to
Colombia, and from Colombia to the Southern Cone of Latin America,
the interception and sinking in international waters of vessels with
cargo between Guatemala and Ecuador, has been replicated in the European
Union´s approach to migration from the Maghreb, sub-Saharan Africa, and
Middle East, and in Australia´s detention of potential asylum seekers
Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere in Asia. Thousands of migrants have died
a result in the waters between Europe and Africa, and in the deserts of
North Africa and along the U.S.-Mexican border. Meanwhile the U.S. and
Europe seem to be locked in a race to see who will adopt the highest
and the toughest policies as to deportations, extended detention, and
employer sanctions, along with equivalent measures taken by Israel
the Palestnian people.
*The 3rd International Assembly of Migrants, Refugees, and the Displaced
(IAMR 3) is intended to build upon previous successful efforts along
lines in Manila and Athens in 2008 and 2009, and to contribute
towards creating ongoing organizational frameworks and spaces for
dialogue, and collaboration as part of the historic task which confronts
: building a global, grassroots migrant movement capable of challenging
resisting dominant policies, and of transforming the overall correlation
forces, discourses, and practices regarding such issues on a global,
regional, and national scale. *Migrant organizations, networks, and
movements from throughout the world and their allies will be shaping the
agenda and attending from Latin America, North America, Europe, the
East, Africa, Asia, and Oceania.
*IAMR 3 will conclude with a People´s Caravan from Mexico City to Puerto
Vallarta, Jalisco leaving Mexico City on Nov. 9 and arriving to
in mobilizations there against the Iv GFMD, and to deliver the verdict
the International Tribunal of Conscience.*
*The International Tribunal of Conscience (ITC):*
***is the first of its kind to focus on violations of the rights and
of migrants, refugees, and the displaced on a global scale, *and seeks
build on the contributions and experiences of the Russell Tribunal, the
Permanent People´s Tribunal (PPT)of the Lelio Basso Foundation, the
American Tribunal on Water, the Tribunal of Migrant and Refugee Women in
Argentina, the Tribunal on Sexual Violence during the armed conflict in
Guatemala, Mexico´s International Benito Juárez Tribunal and
Tribunal on Labor and Union Rights, and to act in a manner complementary
the mandate of the International Tribunal on Climate Justice and the
of Mother Earth recently established as a result of the People´s Summit
Cochabamba, Bolivia (April 2010). *Its emphasis will be on
documenting, determining state and corporate responsibility, and
recommending remedies and follow-up actions regarding violations of the
rights to migrate, not to migrate, and not to be displaced, as measured
against existing legal minimums in international, regional, and national
law, and the ethical foundations which underly the demands of migrant
movements. The Tribunal´s first session will be held in Quito, Ecuador
Oct.8-12 within the framework of the IV World Social Forum on Migration,
part of our commitment to coordinate our efforts in Mexico City in
with convergent efforts elsewhere. The Tribunal has already decided to
assess the impact of SB 1070 in Arizona as its first case following
along these lines from immigrant rights groups based in Arizona and
*Please join us in Mexico at the Alternative Forum, Tribunal, and
Nov. 4th-8th, and as part of the People´s Caravan Nov. 9-11, in
with migrant families, communities, and organizations based in and
to Mexico, and in a principled stand challenging the Mexican state and
government´s responsibility and complicity for the systematic violation
*Charter of the International Tribunal of Conscience of Peoples in
*(MAY 2010 draft)*
*“NO HUMAN BEING IS ILLEGAL” *
*Objetives of the Tribunal*
1. *To make visible, investigate,
document, judge, and determine the
ethical and/or legal responsibility of states, governments,
institutions, organizations and/or persons implicated in policies or
practices which result in violations of the dignity and/or rights of
migrants, refugees, and the displaced (“peoples in movement”), and/or of
their families, communities, and peoples, in countries or places of
transit, and destination throughout the world*
*a) **within the framework of patterns and
practices of state,
structural, and/or systemic violence *
b) including their *rights to migrate, not
to migrate, and not to be
forcibly displaced,* which together lay the foundation for the
right to freedom of movement, transit, and/or “human mobility”,
“hospitality”*, or *ius migrandi (see Arts. 13 and 14 of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights of 1948), and/or of their to right to remain
their current place of residence, or to return to their place of
2. *To analyze representative cases of
violations of the dignity and/or
rights of **migrants, refugees, the displaced (“peoples in movement”),
and/or of their families, communities, and peoples*;
3. *To judge and determine the
responsibility of state and/or corporate
actors in light of the minimums established by relevant international,
regional or national instruments and/or jurisprudence, customary law,
their interpretation, as provided by Art. 38 of the Statute of the
International Court of Justice (1945); and/or *
a) *the ethical imperatives which underlie
the demands of movements and
peoples, and their insurgent legitimacy within the context of the
of their right to rebellion, including mobility as an expression of a
process of liberation; *
b) *from the perspective of alternative
law, including the right to
universal citizenship, social and/or political membership,and/or
participation based upon residence or domicile, and people´s rights to
freely choose their own destiny, as an expression of their right to
self-determination, as recognized in the Statute of the Permanent
Tribunal, based upon the Universal Declaration of the Rights of Peoples
(Algiers Declaration, July 4, 1976, Arts. 1-7); *
c) *the rights recognized and demands
included in the People´s
Agreement adopted by the World People´s Summit on Climate Change and the
Rights of Mother Earth on April 22d 2010, and in the Charter of Rights
Undocumented Workers adopted in Mexico City on April 30th, 1980, among
d) *to recommend immediate, interim or
medium term, and long term
precautionary and/or remedial measures based upon the rights to justice,
compensation, reparation and/or restitution of harms; to truth, and/or
reconciliation, applicable to each case as appropriate, and with regard
the systematic patterns and practices which they might reflect; *
e) *to contribute from a critical,
counter-hegemonic perspective not
only to enhancing or deepening existing legal frameworks, but also to
expansion of their reach in terms of the recognition of rights, and to
transformation “from below”; *
f) *to facilitate the processing of appropriate cases into
international, regional, and national inter-governmental and
non-governmental institutional channels and frameworks of public action,
policy, and opinion, including coordination and collaboration as
regarding convergent issues with other Tribunals of Consciente or
mechanisms *(such as The Tribunal of Migrant and Refugee
Argentina, the Permanent People´s Tribunal, the International Tribunal
Climate and Environmental Justice, the Latin American Tribunal on Water,
Tribunal on Sexual Violence during the armed conflict in Guatemala, the
International Tribunal on Trade Union Freedoms, and the Benito Juárez
International Tribunal, among others).
*1. **The Tribunal will conduct its first
session* within the framework
of the *Iv World Social Forum on Migration* *(WSFM;
* to be held *in Quito, Ecuador, Oct. 8-12, 2010; *
2. *The Tribunal´s second session will be
held in Mexico City from Nov.
4th to 6th, as part of the Global Alternative Forum of Peoples in
(Nov. 4-8; please see website at tribunal.migrante.saltoscuanticos.org;
email@example.com),* which is among the counter-hegemonic
spaces and activities being organized *in response to the Ivth Global
on Migration and Development (GFMD) to be held in Puerto Vallarta from
8-11,* which is being organized by the Mexican government and the BBVA
3. *The dates, locations, and
characteristics of subsequent sessions of
the Tribunal will be determined by its Permanent Secretariat, to be
in Mexico City in November; *
4. Cases admitted for consideration during
the first two sessions of
the Tribunal must be submitted to the Interim Secretariat of the Tribunal
Spanish or English (via e-mail to
firstname.lastname@example.org, with a maximum
length of 5 pages, with the possibility of submitting additional
once admission of the case for processing has been notified) no later
Monday, August 2d, 2010 for hearing in Quito, and Friday, September 17th
hearing in Mexico City;
5. The Tribunal will issue initial verdicts
(to be supplemented later)
in Mexico City and Puerto Vallarta on November 10, 2010
*2 attachments* Download all
*DRAFT CHARTER OF THE INT´L TRIBUNAL OF CONSCIENCE.doc*
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as a Google
*ESTATUTO TRIBUNAL MIGRANTES.doc*
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as a Google
Plus other co-convenors from more than 40 countries:
Elvira Arellano, Emma Lozano y el Rev. Walter Coleman de Familia Latina
Unida Sin Fronteras, Centro Pueblo Sin Fronteras, y la
Church en Chicago,; Baldemar Velásquez, Farm Labor Organizing Committee
(FLOC; Estados Unidos); Eliseo Medina, Service Employees International
(SEIU; Estados Unidos); Túpac Enrique Acosta, Tonatierra, Phoenix,
Dorinda Moreno, Fuerza Mundial y Hitec Aztec Communications; padre Luis
Angel Nieto de Nuestros Lazos de Sangre; Rufino Domínguez Santos del
Binacional para el Desarrollo Indígena Oaxaqueño, (CBDIO); el Obispo
Msgr. Samuel Ruiz García, Msgr. Raúl Vera García, el Sindicato Mexicano
Electricistas ( SME), Rosa Martha Zárate de los ExBraceros,; Juan Manuel
Sandoval, Red Mexicana frente al Libre Comercio (RMALC); Fernando Valadez
Programa de Atención Psicológica a Migrantes, Universidad
(México); Manuel Fuentes, Oscar Alzaga, Adriana Jiménez Moles, Patty
Sánchez; Asociación Nacional de Abogados Democráticos (ANAD); José
Medina, Martha Sánchez Soler, Luis Lopezllera y Carlota Botey del
Migrante Mesoamericano; José González, Frente Indígena de Organizaciones
Binacionales (FIOB); Epifanio Díaz Sarabia, Movimiento Indígena Alterno;
Pedro González Gómez, Asamblea de Migrantes Indígenas de la Ciudad
México; Martín Hernández, Secretariado International Cristiano en
Solidaridad con los Pueblos de América Latina (SICSAL); Dolores González
Saravia, SERAPAZ; padre Miguel Concha Malo, Centro de Derechos Humanos
Francisco de Vitoria”; Centro de Derechos Humanos Fray Matías de
A.C., Tapachula, Chiapas Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Montaña (CDHM)
Tlachinollan, A.C, Tlapa, Guerrero; LIMEDDH-FIDH; sección mexicana de
Amnistía Internacional; Comité Cerezo; Hijos/Hijas México-Colombia; Red
los Derechos de la Infancia en México (REDIM); Global Justice Workers
Alliance, Mexico Program; hermanas Silvia Conde, Socorro Hurtado, Ma.
Martínez, Teresa Salgado, Conferencia de Religioso/as de México;
Campbell Peña, Enrique Toledo, Maribel Téllez; UACM: Enrique González
Amarela Varela, Yolanda Gómez, Salvador Aguilar de Anda, Valeria Moscoso
Urzúa, Marylena Bustamante, Enrique Adar Guadarrama; Dr. José
Foronda, Vanesa Foronda, PRECADEMAC; Fernando Suárez Solar, Proyecto
Guerrero Azteca; Alicia Castellanos Guerrero, Ana Esther Ceceña, Carlos
Fazio, Gen. Francisco Gallardo, Gilberto López y Rivas del capítulo
mexicano, Red de Intelectuales y Artistas por la Humanidad; Gustavo
(Universidad de la Tierra, Oaxaca); Walter Martínez Alves y Enrique
Reyna, Movimiento en Solidaridad con Nuestra América y Comité 68; Atilio
Borón, *Argentina, *Seyla Benhabib, Noam Chomsky, Thomas Pogge, Saskia
Sassen (*Estados Unidos*), Monique Chemillier-Gendreau (*Francia)*, Hans
Egil Offerdal (*Noruega*) y Enrique Dussel (*México/Argentina*); Raúl
Zibechi, *Uruguay; *Dr. Leo Gabriel, Instituto de Investigaciones
Intercultuales, (Viena, *Austria*), Miembro del Consejo Internacional
Foro Social Mundial; Martín Espada (poeta y ensayista), Daniel Nina,
Rico*; Teresa Gutiérrez, Coalición Primero de Mayo (Nueva York, EEUU) y
International Migrant Alliance (Alianza Internacional de Migrantes);
Philippine Forum (Nueva York, Estados Unidos); Tess Tesalona, Immigrant
Workers Center (Montreal, *Canada*); Francis Calpotura, TIGRA y La Liga
Global (EEUU); Monami Maulik, DRUM (Nueva York); David Bacon (EEUU);
Carlsen, Prog. de las Américas, Center on Internacional Policy
(EEUU/México); Victoria Cintra de MIRA (Mississippi, EEUU), Colette
Lespinasse de GARR; José Luis Soto de Espacio Insular, *Haití y
Dominicana*; Diego Lorente, Consejería en Proyectos- PCS; Marylena
Bustamante, Carlos López (Centro Pastoral de Atención a Migrantes-
Ciudad de Guatemala), Maria Eliza Orozco del Consejo Maya Mam
(Xela/Quetzaltenango), en *Guatemala*; Nelly Rosa Santos, Caravana de
y Familiares Hondureños (*Honduras)*; Luis Perdomo, COFAMIDE, *El
Gerardo Sánchez, Confederación Solidaridad, *Nicaragua y Costa Rica*;
Girardi, *Nicaragua;* Ana Caicedo, CEFEMINA *Costa Rica; *Comité
por la Defensa de los Derechos Humanos (CPDH) (Bogotá, Colombia),
Intereclesial de Justicia y Paz (Colombia); Red de Alternativas a la
Impunidad y Globalización del Mercado; Karmen Ramírez Boscán, Cabildo
Nóüna de Campamento, Fuerza de Mujeres Wayúu, *Colombia (región
con Venezuela)*; Lina Cahuasquí, Manuel Hidalgo (Asociación para la
Integración de Latinoamérica, APILA), Natividad Obeso (Mujeres Unidas
Migrantes y Refugiadas), Silvana Mastromatteo, MIREDES International
Perú, Chile, Argentina y Suiza*; Luiz Bassegio, Grito de los Excluidos
(Brasil); Iván Forero, CEAR (*Estado Español*); Agne Tamboura,
*Senegal* y *Estado
Español;* Andrés Le Doux Wamba of *Cameroon,* Liepollo Lebohang Pheko,
Trade Collective, *Sudfrica*; Anisur Rahman Khan, *Bangladesh; *Luigi
Ferrajoli, Enrica Rigo, *Italia*; Válery Alzaga (*Bélgica*); Nadia
“24 Horas Sin Nosotros”, *Francia y Marruecos*; Abdellah El Hairach,
Asociación Sur Migración y Desarrollo (ASMD, *Marruecos*); Vassilis
Hagen Kopp del No Border Network/Red Sin Fronteras en *Holanda, Bélgica,
Italia, Austria, Suecia, Finlandia, Estado Español, Grecia y Alemania, *
Bultron, Asia-Pacific Mission for Migrants (*Hong Kong/Filipinas*);
many others (summarized list)
*GLOBAL ALTERNATIVE FORUM OF PEOPLES IN MOVEMENT AND PEOPLE´S
*November 4-10 2010*
Dorinda Moreno, Fuerza Mundial, 4 Colores-4 Rumbos/Hitec Aztec
Communications (Oakland, California); Patricia Barba, Colectiva Las
Americas; Tupac Enrique Acosta, Tonatierra-Nahuacalli; Elvira Arellano,
Familia Latina Unida Sin Fronteras; Marta Sánchez Soler, José Jacques y
Medina, Movimiento Migrante Mesoamericano; Camilo Pérez Bustillo,
Internacional; y Amarela Varela, Marylena Bustamante, UACM, en nombre
Comité Promotor Internacional del Tribunal Internacional de Conciencia.
*DECLARACION FINAL COCHABAMBA.doc*
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as a Google
*CONVOCATORIA 29 de mayo VS racismo.doc*
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*ESTATUTO TRIBUNAL MIGRANTES.doc*
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as a Google
*UPDATED ENGLISH CALL FOR GLOBAL ALTERNATIVE FORUM APRIL 30 2010.doc*
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NINGUN SER HUMANO ES ILEGAL – NO LEGALIZACION, NO REELECCION – PAPELES
Stand against "Hate"! Join with the Artists Against Arizona
your voices by becoming a signatory to the campaign against Arizona's
discrimination toward the undocumented, Ethnic Studies, and strides
repealing the l4th Amendment.
Dorinda Moreno, Fuerza Mundial
Elders of 4 Colors 4 Directions
Hitec Aztec Collaborations/FM Global