Thursday, December 14, 2023

Public domain

Copyright law?  Public domain?  Here's some news:

The earliest incarnation of Mickey Mouse is set to become public property in the new year, after its stringent 95-year copyright finally runs out. 

Mickey Mouse, as seen in his first screen appearance in the 1928 short 'Steamboat Willie' will be become public domain on January 1, 2024. 

The American pop culture icon has been closely guarded from imitation by copyright law, which allows a copyright to be held for 95 years.

Congress expanded the law to its current length several times since Mickey's creation leading some to dub it the Mickey Mouse Protection Act.

'This is it. This is Mickey Mouse. This is exciting because it's kind of symbolic,' Jennifer Jenkins, director of Duke's Center for the Study of Public Domain, told KTLA

Long. Over. Due.


The "Steamboat Willie" Mickey Mouse looks a lot different than the one we know today strolling around Disney Land. The mouse from the animated short has a narrow, thin tail and a longer nose.

The copyright protecting that character was originally set to expire in 1984, according to Loyola University Chicago School of Law's Intellectual Property Law Blog.

Copyright law dating back to 1909 allowed a work to remain closed off from the public domain for 28 years, with an option to extend another 28 years, according to LUC's law blog.

But, in the 1970s, Disney successfully lobbied to get that lifespan extended by another 20 years, resulting in a new copyright law: the Copyright Act of 1976.

And 20 years later, with the end of Mickey's new copyright looming, Disney again lobbied for an extension, leading to the Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998, which was nicknamed the "Mickey Mouse Protection Act" because of Disney's hand in it, according to LUC's law blog.

That 1998 law is what all copyrights operate under today. But there hasn't been another extension to the law, so starting January 1, anyone can use Steamboat Willie.

But even though the Steamboat Willie version of Mickey Mouse is entering the public domain, Disney doesn't need to be too worried about imposter Mickeys popping up around the world.

Every time the company creates an altered version of the character, it gets copyrighted, and all modern depictions of the friendly mouse are protected, according to LUC's blog. Disney also owns trademarks on the modern incarnation of Mickey Mouse, giving the brand's mascot even more protection.

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):

Thursday, December 14, 2023.  Joe Biden's election prospects worsen as the assault on Gaza continues.

As the assault on Gaza continues with US President Joe Biden's approval, the world speaks out.  A historic protest took place last night.  Maura Zurick (NEWSWEEK) reports:

Staffers and appointees of President Joe Biden's administration held a vigil in front of the White House on Wednesday to demand that the president call for a ceasefire in Gaza.

More than three dozen people, most donning sunglasses and masks to conceal their identities, participated in the evening vigil, according to media reports.

Former State Department official turned activist Josh Paul, who resigned in October over the Biden administration's approach to the Israel-Hamas war, addressed the crowd during the demonstration in Washington, D.C.

Newsweek reached out via email on Wednesday night to Biden's representatives for comment.

"The temporary ceasefire ended 13 days ago, and we have been horrified to see the full resumption of killings, displacement and bombardment of Palestinian civilians in Gaza," Paul said during prepared remarks he made on behalf of the vigil attendees. "A temporary pause to this violence was never enough. We must move with urgency to save as many lives as possible and achieve an immediate, permanent ceasefire agreement and the return of all hostages."

The number of Palestinian civilian casualties has sparked accusations of Israeli war crimes. Numerous videos and images of suffering in Gaza, which is home to roughly 2.3 million people, have ignited demands by many for a ceasefire.

Jewish Voices For Peace shut down part of the 100 in Los Angeles yesterday as they demanded a cease-fire.

In London today, THE GUARDIAN reports:

Pro-Palestinian activists have blocked the entrances to the BP oil company’s offices in central London.

In a tweet, Fossil Free London said the company was “fuelling genocide” as they held up a Palestinian flag and a sign that said “Free Palestine”.

It comes after Israel recently awarded licences to several companies, including BP, to explore for natural gas off the country’s Mediterranean coast.


AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!,, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman, with Juan González.

The United Nations General Assembly has voted overwhelmingly for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza. In Tuesday’s vote, 153 nations approved the resolution, 23 abstained, just 10, including the U.S. and Israel, voted “no.” Though nonbinding, the U.N. vote is another indication of the mounting isolation of the United States as it continues to support Israel’s assault, which has killed over 18,000 Palestinians in a little over two months. The vote came just days after the United States vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire.

Meanwhile, President Biden has delivered his sharpest criticism yet of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. During a donor event in Washington, D.C., Biden criticized what he called Israel’s, quote, “indiscriminate bombing” of Gaza.

In a moment, we’ll be joined by the Palestinian U.N. diplomat Nada Tarbush. But first, let’s turn to a speech she gave in November at the U.N. in Geneva. It went viral.

NADA TARBUSH: Israel said something that should make all of you shudder. It effectively said, “I can kill any and every person in Gaza. The 2.3 million people in Gaza are either terrorists or terrorist sympathizers or human shields, and are therefore legitimate targets.” Every person, according to Israel, falls into one of these three categories — a child, a journalist, a doctor, a U.N. staff, a newborn baby in an incubator. And so, according to Israel, it can kill them and then have the audacity to come to this room and tell the world with a straight face, “We are acting in accordance with international law.”

The death of each of the over 11,350 people killed over the past month, be it children, journalists, U.N. staff, the sick, the elderly, according to Israel, was justified. Think about that for a moment, and let it give you pause. Anyone espousing this warped logic has no shred of humanity, no sense of morality and no knowledge of legality.

But guess what: Your carpet explanation for carpet bombing will not fly. People are not fools. The people in this room are seasoned diplomats, who are well read, have a knowledge of history, and many of whom have seen your government make the same arguments during your six previous military aggressions on Gaza in the past 15 years. They have seen you resort to collective punishment, targeting of Palestinian children, journalists, medical staff, aid workers before. They have seen you forcibly transfer our communities, colonize our lands, demolish our homes, and evict families from their own properties since the 7th of October and for the 75 years that preceded it.

AMY GOODMAN: That was Palestinian U.N. diplomat Nada Tarbush speaking November 17th, almost a month ago. At the time, the death toll in Gaza from Israel’s assault was about 11,000. Today it’s over 18,600.

Nada Tarbush joins us now in an exclusive interview from Geneva, where she serves as counselor to the Permanent Observer Mission of the State of Palestine to the United Nations in Geneva.

I’m wondering, Nada Tarbush, if you can start off by responding to the UNGA, the U.N. General Assembly’s overwhelming call, even if it is symbolic, for a Gaza ceasefire, in response to the U.S. vetoing in the U.N. Security Council on Friday the ceasefire call, at the same time that it looks like President Biden is intensifying his criticism of Netanyahu and the Israeli bombardment, criticizing indiscriminate bombing. If you can just take that on?

NADA TARBUSH: Absolutely. First of all, thank you so much for having me, Amy.

So, with regard to the UNGA vote, what I’d like to first say is, to put it in context for the audience, this resolution was brought to the General Assembly following the United States’s veto on a resolution at the Security Council last Friday which had called for an immediate ceasefire. And so states invoked tools that are available in the United Nations to — whenever the Security Council is deadlocked, to take the discussion to the General Assembly, and on a matter of international peace and security. So this is what happened. And the vote was, unsurprisingly, overwhelmingly for an immediate ceasefire.

Now, the significance this vote was that not only is it showing that the support that Israel had, from many Western states especially, for its military assault on Gaza is eroding, and even staunch supporters of Israel, like Australia and like Canada, are now saying we need a ceasefire. And so, what this shows is that Israel is isolated, the United States is isolated. The General Assembly, which is the world’s parliament and which is the most democratic organ in the United Nations, has said, “We overwhelmingly want an immediate ceasefire.”

Now, at the same time — and this is where sometimes you feel there’s a parallel reality — you hear the United States voting against that — you see the United States voting against that resolution, and at the same time words from the Biden administration about Israeli indiscriminate bombing. So, my comment on that would be that we believe in actions and not words when it comes to the U.S. government. I have heard words in the U.N. that anyone would have thought were a good thing for the Americans to say, like “We care about Palestinian civilians.” But this will not fly as long as we see the United States sending military aid, billions of dollars in military aid, using Americans’ taxpayer money, which it could have used on other things, like homelessness and healthcare, and sending that aid to help Israel commit a genocide. So I am not convinced that the Biden administration has changed course. It is still voting against a ceasefire, vetoing Security Council resolutions, sending aid and giving Israel all the diplomatic and political cover that it needs.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, Nada Tarbush, I wanted to ask you — before October 7th, both Israel and the United States comfortably believed that the issue of Palestine had been forgotten by the rest of the world. I’m wondering your sense of how the world has rallied in the recent two months in support of the Palestinian cause.

NADA TARBUSH: I would say that the world has never forgotten Palestine, unless by “the world” we mean the powerful, militarized states like the United States and other European states or other states from the Global North, let’s say. The international community has, year after year, said — called for a solution, called for an end to occupation, for an end to apartheid, an end to the settlement colonization project that we see in the West Bank. And so, it is only a handful of powerful states that have been trying to get Palestine off the agenda and blocking any avenue to push for the rights of the Palestinian people under international law.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Could you talk, as well, about your own family history as it relates to Palestine? Your family fled in 1948. Because in your powerful speech, you also talked about how relations between Jews and Palestinians were before the creation of Israel.

NADA TARBUSH: Yes, absolutely. My family are refugees from 1948. My father was from a village near Jerusalem which is one of the more than 450 villages that were completely destroyed during the Nakba, which is the catastrophic events that led to mass ethnic cleansing of Palestinians and to the most protracted refugee crisis in the world. And my mother also is from a city that became part of Israel after 1948.

The Palestine’s history is one of diversity. It is a multiethnic, multireligious land historically, which has hosted and welcomed all faiths, which has welcomed people of various ethnicities. It has always been a culturally diverse mosaic. And so, this is why it is not surprising to me that many people don’t see that this land can be transformed into an ethnocracy, into a state which is only for one people. And you have seen, even in the early days of Zionism, that you had many Jewish intellectuals, like Albert Einstein, Hannah Arendt, Sigmund Freud and others, who were against the idea of an exclusively Jewish state in the historical land of Palestine. They saw that that would cause issues like ethnic cleansing, like not respecting and indeed violating the rights of the Indigenous inhabitants.

AMY GOODMAN: In your speech that you gave at the U.N. in Geneva, you referred to these remarks in March by Israel’s far-right West Bank settler, Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich.

BEZALEL SMOTRICH: [translated] There is no such thing as a Palestinian. There is no such thing as a Palestinian people. … Do you know who is Palestinian? I am Palestinian.

AMY GOODMAN: So, that is the finance minister, part of Netanyahu’s government, Smotrich, saying, “There’s no such thing as a Palestinian,” and, for people, in case you had any trouble hearing this, “I am a Palestinian,” he said. I was wondering if you can respond.

NADA TARBUSH: Yes, I can. This is, again, not a surprising narrative. It is a narrative that we have been hearing for decades, which is that Israel does not want a Palestinian state. Golda Meir, a former Israeli prime minister, said that there is no such thing as the Palestinian people. Palestinians have been dehumanized since the creation of Israel, and even before, and, you know, in order to try and justify this settler colonial project. And there was the myth of a land without a people for a people without a land. But there were people on this land, and they are the Palestinian people.

And so, for us to hear these kind of racist and colonialist slogans is consistent with what Israel has been doing in terms of action throughout these years, which is to try and get rid of the maximum of Palestinian inhabitants from Palestine, from the West Bank, from Gaza, and to try and replace them with Israeli settlers. And so, you know, they’re just saying explicitly what they have been doing. And I think that in Gaza now, what we are seeing is the continuation of this policy of mass ethnic cleansing, of forced displacement, of trying to get rid of the Palestinian population in order to take over the land.

AMY GOODMAN: You also note in — 

NADA TARBUSH: And so, you know, even the Biden — please.

AMY GOODMAN: You also note in your speech in September that Netanyahu held up a map on what he called the new Middle East, that did not show Palestine, during his speech to the United Nations General Assembly. It did not show the West Bank, East Jerusalem or Gaza. Explain what he’s putting forward, and then President Biden now saying to this group of donors that — he’s criticizing Netanyahu, saying that he is doing this in Gaza because he doesn’t want a Palestinian — a two-state solution.

NADA TARBUSH: Indeed, yes. So, again, this is not the first time that the Israelis have shown maps which completely delete the West Bank and Gaza and incorporate them into Israel and call them Israel. I mean, this has been done consistently. Jerusalem, East Jerusalem, as — West Jerusalem and East Jerusalem were annexed. There are annexationist policies happening in the West Bank with the construction of settlements and the wall and the whole settler colonial infrastructure. And in Gaza, this is — a similar project is underway. And Gaza and the West Bank have been occupied for 56 years. Palestinian dispossession has taken place for 75 years. It is an ongoing Nakba. It is a continuation of mass ethnic cleansing and annexationist policies.

Now, the problem with them formally annexing these lands is that they would have to give the right to vote to the Palestinians, whose land they would be annexing. So, instead, they try to get rid of the Palestinians before annexing the land. But the plan has been clear, and it is a plan to take over what remains of Palestine, which is very little, what remains of historic Palestine. The West Bank and Gaza constitute 22% of historic Palestine. With the settlements, this has reduced dramatically. And they’re trying to take over whatever little bits are left.

AMY GOODMAN: Well, I want to thank you for being with us, Nada Tarbush, counselor to the Permanent Observer Mission of the State of Palestine to the United Nations in Geneva. This is her first broadcast interview since the video went viral of her U.N. address on Israel’s bombardment of Gaza that she gave in Geneva.

Coming up, we’ll speak with Texas Congressmember Greg Casar as President Biden appears to be caving to Republican demands for hard-line border measures in exchange for funding for the war in Ukraine and beyond. Back in 20 seconds.

Some are trying to rescue Joe -- people and outlets -- and insist that his remarks about the Israeli government losing support over their "indiscriminate bombing"  which is a hilarious read considering he continues to support the bombings and provide weapons and that he proclaimed himself a "Zionist."  Peter Nicholas and Dan De Luce (NBC NEWS) point out:

Tough as the words sounded, Biden’s actions are, if anything, bolstering Israel’s ability to carry out the war and reach its paramount goal of destroying Hamas.

He has yet to take measures that could alter the tactics of the Israeli military in ways that spare more civilian lives.

Biden hasn’t imposed conditions on the military aid that the U.S. sends to Israel, as members of his own party have urged him to do. Nor is he demanding a cease-fire or end date to a war that has displaced nearly the entire population of Gaza.

Successive votes in the U.N. General Assembly illustrate how Israel and the U.S. are more and more isolated in their opposition to a cease-fire

On Tuesday, 153 countries voted in favor of a cease-fire, with 30 countries switching their position in favor since a similar measure was debated in October. Among the countries that changed their stance were three close U.S. allies: Australia, Canada and Japan.

At WSWS, Andre Damon notes Joe's statements and what they mean:

On Tuesday, US President Joe Biden made a series of damning admissions regarding the ongoing genocide in Gaza that makes clear the United States is consciously aiding and abetting what it knows to be war crimes by the Israeli government.

At a campaign event, Biden stated that Israel is carrying out “indiscriminate bombing” of the civilian population of Gaza. He subsequently added that Israel’s Minister of National Security “Ben-Gvir and company and the new folks, they… They not only want to have retribution, which they should for what the Palestinians—Hamas—did, but against all Palestinians.”

In other words, Biden admitted that Israel is not making efforts to limit civilian casualties and explained that the reason is that the Minister of National Security is deliberately seeking to carry out retribution, i.e., collective punishment—against all Palestinian civilians, including unarmed women and children.

The American president has thus admitted to arming, funding and politically supporting the intentional murder of civilian members of a targetted ethnic group—i.e., genocide. Significantly, even in light of these admissions, Biden reiterated that the United States would continue its unconditional funding and arming of the Israeli military, declaring that “in the meantime, none of it is going to walk away from providing Israel what they need to defend themselves and to finish the job.”

An admission to complicity in War Crimes.  

It's no wonder that Joe is losing support.  Back in October, Saquib Bhatti (IN THESE TIMES) wrote:

The man who offered his rock solid and unwavering” support to Israel’s genocide of two million Palestinians in Gaza will not get my vote. 

The man whose administration circulated memos prohibiting staffers around the world from calling for deescalation or restraint in the face of ethnic cleansing cannot remain president. 

The man who is spending billions of our taxpayer dollars to fund an Israeli war machine that considers Palestinians human animals” and denies drinking water and food to a million Palestinian children belongs at The Hague, not the White House.

The man who lied about having seen photographic evidence of atrocities that never took place, and strengthened the rhetoric that is spurring anti-Muslim and anti-Palestinian attacks in the United States, is not my candidate.

Wadea Al-Fayoume, a six-year-old Palestinian-American child was stabbed 26 times by his landlord in the Chicago suburbs shortly after Biden pronounced his lies. Most Palestinians, Arabs, and Muslims I know place the blame for Wadea’s murder largely at Biden’s feet. I do too.

If Biden is the Democratic nominee, I will not vote for him.

The anti-Biden mood has only gotten stronger.  David Axelrod is noting Joe may not be able to carry Michigan in 2024 and how bad the polling is for Joe across the country.  Noting this, Mike offered, "The best way to stop a second term for Donald Trump would be to have a better Democratic Party nominee.  And Joe's support of Israel's genocide isn't doing him any favors.  I hear more and more people saying that they won't vote for him because of it. At the late date, what name Dem could step in?"

Good question.  Let's move from that to bad stupdity.

First on the stupid list, me.  I posted that video because of the discussion of Gaza.  While Nina Turner was talking about voting, I just tuned her out.  We've been covering the voting issue she's an idiot on since 2008.  I thought we would all know to ignore her on that but I was the stupid one.

E-mails are pouring in and the video hasn't even been up at the site for 30 minutes.

Let me yell this in all caps: SHUT UP IF YOU DON'T KNOW ABOUT WRITE IN BALLOTS.

Like many idiots, Nina hears "write-in" and thinks that mean people can vote for whomever they wants.

What?  You think is a functioning democracy?

When Lamber of the failed CORRENTE -- who I ran off from THE VANGUARD, by the way -- let me know if we need that story -- tried to trick people in 2008.  Party Unity My Ass -- that was the slogan after the 2008 primaries when Hillary Clinton was the victim of a rigged system.  A number of her supporters were not going to vote for Barack Obama.  Some were not going to vote at all, some were going third party, some were going John McCain.

Liar Lambert shows up telling voters in Texas (is he from Texas, I don't know, I don't remember why he focused on that state but it may have just been where a large number of CORRENTE readers were) to show support for Hillary in the general election by voting for Hillary as a write-in.

He lied to them.  

In Texas, they interpret the write-in.  If you vote in 2024 for FDR?  They'll interpret it as a vote for the Democratic Party.  So people who didn't want to vote for Barack in 2008 in Texas writing in Hillary's name were . . . voting for Barack.

Each state is different.  There is no one-way that every state handles write-ins.  Some 'write-ins' have to be on approved list -- approved by the state.  

So Nina presents the argument that Joe should drop out because he's going to risk losing.  That is a possibility.  However, she then talks about how she would vote for Cornel West (and, if she could vote twice -- which would be illegal -- she'd also vote for Marianne Williamson).  

So Joe should drop out -- her argument -- so we don't lose but Cornel should stay in the race?

That's stupid and it's inconsistent.

Cornel is a distraction and a waste of time.  He will not be on the ballot in enough states to be elected.  He may not get on more than ten states.  He doesn't have the money -- and that's not just because of all the money he owes.

RFK Jr. has the money.  But Junior's struggling to get on the ballots.  He's also now dropped to 7% support (and he's taking from Joe, not just from Donald).  He's got the money and he's struggling to get on the ballot.  They're worried about states that only require 10,000 signatures on a petition to have ballot access -- worried that they won't get on the ballot in Missouri, for example.

Stop talking about write-in campaigns in the US unless you do the work.  You don't know what you're talking about.  You're living in a fantasy world where Americans can write in any name that they want and have their vote go to that candidate.

Lovely world, but we don't live in it.

Nina spoke very well regarding Gaza but she doesn't grasp that there is no standardized process for write-in votes in the US across all fifty states.

And if your concern is that Joe running is risking a second term for Donald -- a fear I share -- and think he should drop out because of it, don't turn around and start praising Cornel's campaign because it's a distraction, not a real campaign.

He could have tried for the Green Party nomination (but he'd already pissed off rank-in-file Greens) and had ballot access.  His ego was too big.  People promoting him at this point aren't living in the real world.

On Joe Biden's chances at re-election, Jack Sheehan (IRISH TIMES) writes:

If you want an image of the lowest point in Joe Biden’s 53-year political career look at a photo that came out of Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza. A line of babies, born premature, impossibly tiny, surrounded by heat reflective material, struggle to survive in a hospital without power, without heat and light, without working incubators, without safety.

Insisting that a crucial Hamas base lay just under the facility, the Israeli Defence Forces besieged the complex, starved it of fuel, bombarded it with munitions, shot several people through the windows and finally stormed it. For evidence of a vital centre of Hamas’s command structure it presented a few rusty rifles, a handful of grenades and little else. Even news outlets sympathetic to the Israeli side immediately expressed scepticism.

In this the Israeli government has been backed to the hilt by the Biden administration, which has repeatedly given political cover to the dubious claims of Israeli intelligence at enormous cost to its own credibility and electoral prospects.

From the outset of this war Biden has given full-throated support to the military campaign of Netanyahu’s government, even going so far as to physically embrace the man on a visit to the country. He has cast doubt on Israeli culpability for deaths, questioned the numbers of Palestinians killed and cut dead any discussion of a ceasefire as other leaders moved towards that position.

[. . .]

Biden’s hardline stance on the bombing of Gaza has shocked many within his party, from ordinary liberals and progressives, to the already unhappy left, to Arab American voters, a demographic who voted consistently Democratic until now.

It’s hard to overstate just how out of touch with public opinion the administration’s stance is. In a recent poll almost 70 per cent of voters support an immediate ceasefire, including 75 per cent of Democrats and even a majority of Republicans. 

The assault on Gaza continues.  Binoy Kampmark (DISSIDENT VOICE) points out, "Bloodletting as form; murder as fashion.  The ongoing campaign in Gaza by Israel’s Defence Forces continues without stalling and restriction.  But the burgeoning number of corpses is starting to become a challenge for the propaganda outlets:  How to justify it?  Fortunately for Israel, the United States, its unqualified defender, is happy to provide cover for murder covered in the sheath of self-defence."   CNN has explained, "The Gaza Strip is 'the most dangerous place' in the world to be a child, according to the executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund."  ABC NEWS quotes UNICEF's December 9th statement, ""The Gaza Strip is the most dangerous place in the world to be a child. Scores of children are reportedly being killed and injured on a daily basis. Entire neighborhoods, where children used to play and go to school have been turned into stacks of rubble, with no life in them."  NBC NEWS notes, "Strong majorities of all voters in the U.S. disapprove of President Joe Biden’s handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas war, according to the latest national NBC News poll. The erosion is most pronounced among Democrats, a majority of whom believe Israel has gone too far in its military action in Gaza."  The slaughter continues.  It has displaced over 1 million people per the US Congressional Research Service.  Jessica Corbett (COMMON DREAMS) points out, "Academics and legal experts around the world, including Holocaust scholars, have condemned the six-week Israeli assault of Gaza as genocide."   The death toll of Palestinians in Gaza is now well over 18,000.  In addition to the dead and the injured, there are the missing.  AP notes, "About 4,000 people are reported missing."  And the area itself?  Isabele Debre (AP) reveals, "Israel’s military offensive has turned much of northern Gaza into an uninhabitable moonscape. Whole neighborhoods have been erased. Homes, schools and hospitals have been blasted by airstrikes and scorched by tank fire. Some buildings are still standing, but most are battered shells."  Kieron Monks (I NEWS) reports, "More than 40 per cent of the buildings in northern Gaza have been damaged or destroyed, according to a new study of satellite imagery by US researchers Jamon Van Den Hoek from Oregon State University and Corey Scher at the City University of New York. The UN gave a figure of 45 per cent of housing destroyed or damaged across the strip in less than six weeks. The rate of destruction is among the highest of any conflict since the Second World War."  Max Butterworth (NBC NEWS) adds, "Satellite images captured by Maxar Technologies on Sunday reveal three of the main hospitals in Gaza from above, surrounded by the rubble of destroyed buildings after weeks of intense bombing in the region by Israeli forces."

ALJAZEERA reports this morning:

The adjacent homes of the Abu Dhbaa and Ashour families have been obliterated in Rafah by a massive air strike. Residents there were seen picking forlornly through the rubble.

Neighbour Fadel Shabaan, who had rushed to the area after the bombing, said: “It was difficult because of the dust and people’s screams. We went there, and we saw our neighbour who had 10 martyrs.”

“This is a safe [refugee] camp, there is nothing here, the children play football in the street,” he added.

Gaza health authorities said 26 people had been killed in the Israeli army bombing, according to Reuters news agency.

The following sites updated:

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Rot in hell, Clarence Thomas

We live in the US and we have a corrupt Supreme Court.  We have judges on it who take bribes and they also ignore precedent and settled law.  They make up reasons to strip us of our rights.  Crooked Clarence is the worst on the bench but he's not the only 'bad egg.'  We should all worry.  Carter Sherman (GUARDIAN) reports:

The US supreme court on Wednesday agreed to hear oral arguments in a case that could determine the future of a pill used in most abortions in the US, in the first major abortion rights case to land at the country’s highest court since the justices overturned Roe v Wade and abolished the national right to the procedure in 2022.

A decision in the case will probably arrive in summer 2024, just months before the presidential election. The outcome of the case could affect not just access to the pill, which has been repeatedly deemed safe and effective, but the Federal Drug Administration’s authority to regulate all manner of medications.

The drug at the heart of the case is mifepristone, one of the two drugs typically used in medication abortions, which make up the majority of US abortions. Last year, an association of anti-abortion organizations and doctors, the Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine, filed a federal lawsuit arguing that the FDA had overstepped its authority when it approved mifepristone in 2000.

Let me note two of Elaine's recent posts:

  • No woman is safe unless all women are safe
  • You don't own our bodies

  • She's been covering the case of Kate Cox, a Texas woman who is pregnant and who has a nonviable pregnancy so there's no hope for the fetus.  Her doctor says that continuing with the pregnancy puts her future attempts to get pregnant at risk.

    I know that.

    You know that.

    The whole world knows it.

    It's no one's damn business and she has to put her medical history out there to the world because a crooked court overturned ROE.  

    So she took the matter to a court and a judge said she could have an abortion.  Then the Attorney General of Texas, Ken Micro Penis Paxton, said no and now she's having to go out of state.

    This whole thing is traumatic for her.  Clarence Thomas will rot in hell.  He will burn in flames daily.  And you know what?  That's actually too good for him.

    "Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):

    Wednesday, December 13, 2023.  A new chant to 'honor' Butcher Biden emerges as the slaughter of Gaza continues.

    In Washington, D.C., over a dozen Jewish elders chained themselves to the fence in front of the White House, urging President Biden to end his opposition to a ceasefire. The 18 women who participated in the act of civil disobedience read the names of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces since Hamas’s October 7 attack. They also chanted, “Biden, Biden, pick a side, ceasefire not genocide!”

    Also on Capitol Hill, over 100 protesters occupied the Senate atrium Monday, urging lawmakers and the Biden administration to cease all military aid to Israel, and instead divest funds for affordable housing, healthcare and other needs. Many protesters wore black shirts with the words “Invest in life.” Dozens were arrested.

    Pick a side
    Not genocide

    The Butcher Biden.  Let the history books record the fact that while he partnered with the Israeli government and sent them weapons to continue the slaughter of civilians and refused to demand a cease-fire, he was called out, he was protested.  There's no excuse that he didn't know what was going on.  He knew.  He chose the side of genocide.  He let children die, yes, but he also caused their deaths by supplying weapons -- by, in fact,  bypassing Congressional approval to provide weapons.

    This was not a stumble, not an accident.  Joe Biden made a policy decision and children died as a result.

    The decisions he's made go to complicity in War Crimes.  Caitlin Hu (CNN) reports:

    The United Nations General Assembly has voted to demand an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in war-torn Gaza, in a rebuke to the United States which has repeatedly blocked ceasefire calls in the UN’s Security Council.

    A majority of 153 nations voted for the ceasefire resolution in the General Assembly’s emergency special session Tuesday, while 10 voted against and 23 abstained.

    While a General Assembly vote is politically significant and seen as wielding moral weight, it is nonbinding, unlike a Security Council resolution. The US last week vetoed a ceasefire resolution in the smaller Security Council, which had been approved by a majority of the powerful 15-member body.   

    ALJAZEERA adds, "The vote comes as international pressure builds on Israel to end its months-long assault on Gaza, where more than 18,000 Palestinians have been killed, the majority of them women and children. More than 80 percent of Gaza’s 2.3 million residents have also been displaced."  And Jessica Corbett (COMMON DREAMS) points out, "The United States—which voted against the resolution on Tuesday— gives Israel $3.8 billion in annual military aid and Congress is now considering a new $14.3 billion package. "

    186 possible votes yesterday in the UN General Assembly.  How many stood with Joe Biden?  How many didn't?  153 voted for a cease-fire.  153 stood against Joe.  23 didn't care enough or were to scared to vote and only 9 voted with Joe.


    No, not 10.  One of the ten voting against the cease-fire was the US.  Only nine other countries stood with the US.

    And Joe's too stupid to grasp what a rejection of his policy that vote is. 


    How do you think that White House conversation went?

    "Only nine other countries voted for me?"

    "Yes, Mr. President but remember, that's just 186 voting.  The General Assembly has 193 members.  That's seven more and I know those seven would have gone with you!"

    "Oh, good.  How many would that be total?"

    "16, Mr. President.  16"

    At WSWS, Andre Damon explains that the UK, Germany and Italy elected not to vote.  Possibly fearing a War Crimes Tribunal, they chose not to stand with Joe.  Those standing with Joe and genocide?  The US, of course.  In addition, "a handful of smaller countries -- Austria, Czechia, Guatemala, Liberia, Micronesia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay" -- wait!  That's only nine.  Yes, the tenth vote goes to Israel.  

    ALJAZEERA notes, "Pope Francis, leader of the world’s 1.35 billion or so Catholics, renewed his call on Wednesday for an 'immediate' ceasefire and pleaded for an end to suffering for both Israelis and Palestinians."

    + Americans are experiencing a rare chance to relive in real-time echoes of the darkest episodes of our own history–from the howitzering of the exhausted Nez Perce in the Bear Paws to the slaughter of nearly frozen Lakota women and children at Wounded Knee; from the internment of Japanese-Americans to the grotesqueries of Abu Ghraib–and seem to have decided it was all for the greater good.

    + Gaza 2023, not Iraq 2004…

    + The Financial Times reported this week that the retaliatory bombing of Gaza with American weapons and American consent may have already surpassed the death toll from the retaliatory bombing of Dresden by US and UK bombers during the waning days of WW II.

    Last Friday, on DEMOCRACY NOW!, Amy Goodman noted, "Video has emerged showing Israeli soldiers in Beit Lahia in northern Gaza detaining over 100 Palestinian men at gunpoint, forcing them to strip to their underwear while lined up, kneeling on the pavement. Among those detained was Diaa Al-Kahlout, a Palestinian journalist with the London-based pan-Arab newspaper Al-Araby Al-Jadeed. In a statement, the newspaper condemned the mistreatment of Al-Kahlout and other civilians, saying Israeli forces 'deliberately subjected the Gazans to degrading treatment, forcing them to disrobe, conducting intrusive searches, and subjecting them to humiliation upon arrest, before forcibly transporting them to undisclosed locations'."  Saturday, AP reported that they spoke with several of the detainees, "One of those freed, Osama Oula said troops ordered all men to come down to the street in their underwear. He said the men were were taken to a yard, handcuffed and dropped off at a warehouse. During days of questioning, the men were beaten and forced to walk or sleep on raw rice, causing great pain, he said."

    War Crimes?  Over the weekend, Abby Sewell (AP) reported:

    A British Palestinian surgeon who spent weeks in the Gaza Strip during the current Israel-Hamas war as part of a Doctors Without Borders medical team said he has given testimony to a British war crimes investigation unit.

    Ghassan Abu Sitta, a plastic surgeon specializing in conflict medicine, has volunteered with medical teams in multiple conflicts in Gaza, beginning as a medical student in the late 1980s during the the first Palestinian uprising. He has also worked in other conflict zones, including in Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

    Here's a video of the doctor explaining what he saw:

    Of course, the Israeli government denies they are committing War Crimes and Joe Biden's right there denying as well.  But it's not that easy, it's not that simple.  Josh Meyer (USA TODAY) explained:

    But a growing chorus of international experts – including some former U.S. government war crimes officials – say Israel's bombing of civilian areas is a clear violation of the internationally recognized rules of armed conflict.

    “I have very serious concerns about their compliance with the law of war in Gaza based on what I’m seeing,” attorney Brian Finucane, who spent nearly a decade as a State Department adviser on the law of armed conflict, said in an interview. One of the biggest concerns, said Finucane, who left the State Department in 2021, involves “how Israel is defining military objectives, and whether those definitions are consistent with the law of war.”

    [. . .]

    “Is Israel doing everything feasible to limit civilian harm? Is it causing disproportionate harm when attacking civilian targets?” asked Anthony Dworkin, senior policy fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations. “These depend on context – such as information on targeting – which is why leaders are hesitant to make conclusive statements.

    “But I would say that Israeli actions fall outside what is reasonable and do constitute war crimes,” Dworkin, a former director of the nonprofit Crimes of War Project, told USA TODAY.

    Click here for ALJAZEERA's INSIDE STORY addressing the topic of possible US complicity in War Crimes.  The realities of abuse taking place cannot be refuted.  This morning on NPR's MORNING EDITION, Ari Daniel noted:

    Article 18 of the Fourth Geneva Convention states, "Civilian hospitals organized to give care to the wounded and sick, the infirm and maternity cases, may in no circumstances be the object of attack, but shall at all times be respected and protected by the Parties to the conflict." Article 19 continues, "The protection to which civilian hospitals are entitled shall not cease unless they are used to commit, outside their humanitarian duties, acts harmful to the enemy."

    When attacks on health facilities or medical workers do happen — as they have repeatedly in these and other conflicts — the results are devastating. In addition, "part of [health workers'] mission is to provide a witness function," says Amy Hagopian, a public health researcher at the University of Washington, now retired. In her view, this is one reason why health professionals can pose a threat to a military or militia. They can "undermine the credibility of the fighting force [and hold] them accountable in ways that legal entities seem not to be able to do," she says.

    Global health officials are concerned with the quickening pace and severity of attacks in multiple conflict zones. "The sanctity of health care is less and less respected," observes Margaret Harris, a spokesperson for the World Health Organization. "It seems the world has lost its moral compass."

    Sam Zarifi, the executive director of Physicians for Human Rights, agrees. He says, "There's a norm that we have to protect health-care facilities. The temptation to violate that norm has always been very high. That's why the norm has to be really strengthened."

    But the opposite has happened, Zarifi believes. He's worried that this norm has been eroding in conflicts all over the world. Before the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7, the year 2023 was already positioned to be the worst yet for attacks on health care. The ensuing war between Israel and Hamas has pushed that trend into overdrive.

    War Crimes?

    Jake Johnson (COMMON DREAMS) reports on a TELEGRAM channel with videos and photos posted to it of abuses being carried out.  The abuses are posted not in horror but in glee "often accompanied by celebratory captions and emojis."  The Israeli military is said to be the ones behind the channel (with a name apparently intended to mock Muslims or just celebrate the hack Boris Johnson and his bad political novel about assassinating a US president) but the Isreali government denies any involvement in the channel. What's posted is offensive and does amount to War Crimes.  Johnson:

    One image shows what appears to be two Israeli soldiers dragging a dead body with the caption, "Who wants to buy a mop made by Hamas?" 

     Other screengrabs published by Haaretz show bodies described in the caption as "dead Hamas terrorists."

      Haaretz also pointed to an October 11 post on the channel that read: "Burning their mother... You won't believe the video we got! You can hear the crunch of their bones. We'll upload it right away, get ready." Other images of Palestinians on the channel were captioned "exterminating the roaches" and "exterminating the Hamas rats."

    The Intercept's Jeremy Scahill called the images and accompanying messages "deeply, deeply sick" and noted that "there are similar channels run by Israelis that have much larger followings than the IDF one."

    "I scanned through the postings of this sadistic IDF-run Telegram channel and it is utterly sickening," Scahill wrote on social media.

    Jeet Heer, national affairs columnist for The Nation, likened the Telegram images to the appalling photos that emerged nearly two decades ago from the U.S.-run Abu Ghraib military prison in Iraq—"but on a far larger scale."

    "This will be Biden's legacy," Heer wrote. 

    War Crimes? 

    From yesterday's DEMOCRACY NOW!

     AMY GOODMAN: The United Nations General Assembly is voting today on a resolution calling for a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza and the immediate release of all hostages. The vote comes four days after the United States vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire to halt Israel’s bombardment of Gaza, which has killed over 18,000 Palestinians.

    Israel says Hamas and other groups in Gaza are still holding 138 hostages. During the seven-day truce in late November, Hamas released 105 hostages in exchange for 240 Palestinian women and children who were held in Israeli prisons.

    On Monday, relatives of some of the remaining Israeli hostages met with Israeli lawmakers at the Knesset. The Times of Israel reports the families, quote, “called for the government to prioritize seeking an agreement for their release through diplomatic channels, rather than pressing on with the military offensive in Gaza against Hamas,” unquote. Family members are planning to hold a protest outside the Knesset today under the slogan “The hostages have no time.”

    We’re joined right now by Neta Heiman Mina. Her 84-year-old mother, Ditza Heiman, was held hostage in Gaza and freed on November 28th. She had been kidnapped on October 7th from her home on the kibbutz Nir Oz near the border with Gaza by Hamas. Neta Heiman is joining us from Haifa. She’s a member of the Israeli chapter of Women Wage Peace.

    Neta, welcome to Democracy Now! I’m so sorry under these circumstances. Can you talk about what you’re demanding?

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: We are demanding to release all the hostages. We are demanding from the Israeli government to put a deal on the table, not — do not wait to Sinwar to offer a deal. We need the Israeli government to put a deal that will be — it will be a painful price. We will need to release lots of Palestinian prisoners. We will need to do a lot of days of stop the fire, fire stop. But the people that were taken on the 7th of October, the price is for them, and they deserve this price, because the country left them behind. It’s been 67 days, I think, since the 7th of October, and they’re still there. Yesterday, Amiram Cooper from kibbutz Nir Oz, it was his 85th birthday, a 85-years-old man that they’re keeping hostage in Gaza without medication, without enough food. Who can survive this?

    AMY GOODMAN: There’s been some discussion of Israel flooding the tunnels with saltwater. Can you respond to this, and what was said to Israeli lawmakers?

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: Yes, yes. Part of our people are in these tunnels. If you flood it with water, what will happen to the hostages? We know part of them is in the tunnels — are in the tunnels.

    AMY GOODMAN: Can you talk about the day that your mother was released? This was during the truce, during the temporary ceasefire, when more than a hundred — Hamas released more than a hundred hostages. Where were you? How was your mother, Ditza Heiman?

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: It was very exciting. We wait for this for 53 days. She was a hostage 53 days. And we wait for her to be in the list. Every day there was a list, who will be released the day after. And we wait. And she came back. We were very happy. She came back, and she’s OK. But there is a lot of people are still there. And this is what’s important, to bring them back home immediately, because they have no time. The bombing on Gaza can hurt them. My mother wasn’t in a tunnel. Every bomb that they fell on Gaza can hurt her, hurt the hostages. We must bring them home now. There is no time.

    AMY GOODMAN: And can you talk more about how she was treated by Hamas, who she was held with, and also who your mom, 84 years old, Ditza is? And talk about her role in the kibbutz Nir Oz.

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: I can’t — the story for 53 days, it’s her story, and I can’t tell her condition, because it’s going to be a danger for the people who left behind. She was 84 years old, that lived all her adult life in the kibbutz near the border with Gaza. She built the kibbutz. She was from the founders of the kibbutz. She was a very — she was a social worker for a long time. She worked until age of 80.

    AMY GOODMAN: And, Neta, if you can talk about your organization, Women Wage Peace, an organization that the slain activist Vivian Silver was also a part of, who was killed on one of the kibbutzes? They thought she was being held hostage, but, ultimately, I guess, they found DNA of her on the kibbutz.

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: Women Wage Peace is a movement, Israeli movement, of people from all of the rainbow, political rainbow. We are not a — sorry. And all we ask, since Tzuk Eitan, since 2014, to make an agreement with the Palestinians. We don’t tell what kind of agreement, but we believe that there is a possibility to talk with the Palestinians and to make an agreement that they will bring us a peaceful life. We have a sisterhood, a movement, a Palestinian sisterhood movement, that they call us — themselves Women of the Sun. There are people, women, from the West Bank and from Gaza, as well. And we all believe that we can live here in peace.

    AMY GOODMAN: In your opinion piece for Haaretz back in October, you wrote, “I’m furious at the Israeli government, and the accursed members of the government who, because of them, the army was patrolling the West Bank village of Hawara over the Sukkot holiday, instead of guarding and protecting my mother. I’m furious at this government that has for almost a year been doing everything they can to escalate the situation in the Gaza border area. This colossal failure, this chaos, is on their shoulders, is their fault — as is the fact that even now, four days later, a government representative has still not visited most of the families of the hostages.” That was in October. If you can talk about what is happening now with the Israeli government, how they’re communicating with you? You gave a speech yesterday. Explain where you gave it and what your message was, Neta.

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: The Israeli government contacted all the families, and all the hostage families had contact with the government and with the army, but it took too long. Part of the families, it took almost two weeks until someone called them. Yesterday we were — Women Wage Peace were lighting Hanukkah candles in the Hostages Square, the name of the Tel Aviv Museum. And we call for a release all the hostages, and they start a peace process after.

    AMY GOODMAN: What would that peace process look like?

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: I don’t know. I know that Hamas must go. They can’t control Gaza. But Israel can’t control Gaza, as well. It will be — I think it will be — it will need international involvement to establish something else in Gaza, that maybe the Palestinian — I don’t know how to tell it in —

    AMY GOODMAN: Authority? The Palestinian Authority?

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: Authority will take — yes, the Palestinian Authority will take Gaza, to establish something else to replace the Hamas control in Gaza.

    AMY GOODMAN: Your final thoughts —

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: And then maybe — what?

    AMY GOODMAN: Your final thoughts on President Biden, on the United States vetoing the U.N. Security Council resolution calling for ceasefire?

    NETA HEIMAN MINA: I think it must be a ceasefire for — that we can release all the hostages. And then, Israel has a right to protect herself. And what happened on the 7th of October came out from Gaza. But I don’t think we can destroy Gaza or erase Gaza. There are also innocent people in Gaza, not all of them from the Hamas.

    AMY GOODMAN: Well, Neta Heiman Mina, I want to thank you for being with us. Her 84-year-old mother, Ditza Heiman, was kidnapped by Hamas from her home on the kibbutz Nir Oz near the Gaza border, was released November 28th. Neta is a member of the Israeli chapter of Women Wage Peace.

    Coming up, outrage is growing in Dubai after a call to phase out fossil fuels is dropped from the draft of the proposed climate deal at the U.N. climate summit. We’ll be in Dubai. Stay with us.

    The government of Israel is not -- and has not -- prioritized the hostages.  They bombed not knowing if there were hostages in the area.  Flooding tunnels?  The government has no idea where the hostages are.  Peter Beaumont (GUARDIAN) notes:

    Asked about the claims, made in the Wall Street Journal, US President, Joe Biden, declined to directly answer, referring only to assertions that there were no hostages in the areas targeted. “With regard to the flooding … I’m not at lib-, well. There are assertions being made that … there are no hostages in any of these tunnels. But I don’t know that for a fact,” he said.

    No, Joe, you don't know that for a fact.  Nor does your partner in crime the Israeli government.


    Israel continues to prevent independent journalistic access to Gaza – it will do so until there is a ceasefire and even then, if Israel remains in control of the territory, I am not sure we will be allowed in.

    I don't think the Israeli forces are worried about whether we are safe in there or not – I think there are things they don't want us to see and that they want to master the media battlefield.

    So they are fighting on all fronts and controlling the media is one of them.

    If you look at Israeli TV, it is focused 24/7 on Gaza of course. But what you don’t see is Palestinian suffering.

    You see troops, the home front, constant reminders of what happened on 7 October. You see the pain of the hostage families.

    What you do not see are stories of individual Palestinians, nor the colossal scale of the damage going on in Gaza. 

    And the government of Israel isn't the only on trying to control the narrative -- in the US you see many liars trying to bully and intimidate others into silence.  


    Attacks on university presidents for supporting the Constitution and free speech.  Attacks, distortions of what they actually said in a long and lengthy hearing.  Amy Goodman (DEMOCRACY NOW!) noted yesterday the attacks on Claudine Gay:

    The Harvard Corporation, Harvard University’s highest governing body, has rejected calls to fire President Claudine Gay following a contentious congressional hearing on antisemitism and a broader effort to restrict pro-Palestinian speech on college campuses. That’s according to The Harvard Crimson, which reports the decision came after more than 700 faculty members signed an open letter calling on the Harvard Corporation to “defend the independence of the university and to resist political pressures that are at odds with Harvard’s commitment to academic freedom, including calls for the removal of President Claudine Gay.” The letter continues, “The critical work of defending a culture of free inquiry in our diverse community cannot proceed if we let its shape be dictated by outside forces.” Claudine Gay also won the backing of Harvard’s alumni association and more than 70 Black faculty members who called attacks on her “specious and politically motivated.” Gay was inaugurated in October as the first African American and second woman to lead Harvard University. She’s the daughter of Haitian immigrants. Efforts to unseat her came as University of Pennsylvania President Elizabeth Magill resigned her position following intense Republican-led backlash and a Capitol Hill grilling by far-right Republican Congressmember Elise Stefanik.

    When elected Democrats should have been standing up for Liz Magill, they instead embraced GOP attacks and talking points.  See Ava and my "Media: The shell game continues."  They are now going after Lisa Gay.  Alphonso David (ESSENCE) notes:

    Last week’s Congressional hearing on combating antisemitism on college campuses was certainly a troubling moment for Harvard University President Claudine Gay. After failing to state clearly that calling for the genocide of Jewish people or any one demographic group violates Harvard’s bullying and harassment rules, Gay swiftly clarified her remarks and apologized to the university community. Sadly, it only took a few hours for the conversation to turn from a legitimate debate about her comments and university policies around the limits of free speech to ugly, unfettered racist attacks – most prominently from investor and Kyle Rittenhouse apologist Bill Ackman.


    Ackman wrote on X that he “learned from someone with first person knowledge of the Harvard president search that the committee would not consider a candidate who did not meet the DEI office’s criteria,” adding that Gay would not have found herself in the role without a “fat finger on the scale.”

    While I wish it were not necessary, let me set the record straight. President Gay’s resume is exemplary. She earned an undergraduate degree at Stanford University and was awarded the Anna Laura Myers Prize for best senior thesis in the Economics Department. She earned a Ph.D. at Harvard, then served three years as Harvard's Dean of Social Science before becoming the Faculty of Arts and Science Edgerley Family Dean.

    Whatever you think about current events, there can be no dispute over her qualifications.

    Why, then, did Ackman and others shift their rhetoric? It’s a very specific kind of microaggression and dog whistle, one that Scholar and Professor Moya Bailey has termed misogynoir – a type of oppression and discrimination uniquely experienced by Black women.

    Make no mistake: Ackman’s statement on President Gay and equating diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives to modern-day McCarthyism have nothing to do with combating antisemitism. Rather, Ackman is choosing to inflame “anti-woke” culture wars against the most visible Black woman he could target.

    This strategy is patently offensive. It undermines the true purpose and goal of diversity programming and devalues the hard work and accomplishments of President Gay and every other Black woman in a position of power and influence.

    Harvard seems to be standing with Claudine Gay and that's good, that's what they should be doing.  But Princeton refused to stand with Liz and she should have been defended.  Instead hideous Democrats like John Fetterman (who seriously is not competent or fit to serve in the US Senate) and Bob Casey Jr. attacked Liz with no idea of what was said in the lengthy hearing.  Instead, they went with the media clip of a rabid racist (and antisemite) attacking Liz, Claudine and Massachusetts Institute of Technology President Sally Kornbluth.

    Time and again, we've seen a certain type of hideous Democratic males cave instead of defend women under attack.  That's how abortion got chipped away bit by bit.  They're cowards and they fail women over and over.  You better find your voices, Democratic elected males, and find them real damn quick, because we're getting tired of you selling us out.  

    And time and again, it's women who have to stand up.  Billie Schwab Dunn (NEWSWEEK) reports on one Iraqi-American woman who's refusing to back down:

    The founder of the popular makeup brand Huda Beauty has said she is willing to risk her entire business over her stance on the conflict in Gaza.

    [. . .]

    Iraqi-American beauty mogul Huda Kattan, 40, has said she has received threats for sharing her pro-Palestinian stance online. Now in a video she uploaded to TikTok on Sunday, she said she is looking for truth and justice.

    "We have to remember that we can't be afraid to lose anything, we have to trust the process and we have to trust that if we lose something, something else will come to us the right way because we are doing good work, we have to believe that, I believe that wholeheartedly," she said in the clip.

    "I'm willing to risk my entire business, everything that I have on that, in search of the truth and justice and we have to be doing to do that," Kattan said.

    "There's an ethnic cleansing and genocide and they try to change the definition all the time to redefine it…stop treating us like we're stupid, we're not stupid," she said.

    It's a shame that so many men in the US Congress choose to cover themselves in the shade of cowardice.  Maybe Huda could give them a make over?  Good for US House Rep Jamie Raskin for calling out the FOX-ification of all cable news on this effort.


    The following sites updated: