FIFA getting nailed for corruption and contempt for human rights–again!

Brazil anti-FIFA protests May 17 2014

FIFA (the managing body of the World Cup) is getting hammered this week with exposés about its shady dealings with Qatar & the anti-World Cup protests in Brazil. Allegations & investigations of financial & political corruption have long dogged FIFA (& its counterpart, the International Olympic Committee). There are no human rights violations either won’t tolerate if there’s enough money in it for them.

Qatar is one of those peculiar formations that came out of British colonialism; it’s less a nation-state than a feudal monarchy with capitalism. It has no working class so foreign workers mostly from Nepal, India, & Bangladesh are allowed entry for work. Sepp Blatter, the venal & contemptible head of FIFA, is accused (again) of taking money under the table for awarding the FIFA venue to Qatar in 2022–which requires extensive construction of stadia. Qatar uses the Kafala labor system which requires immigrant workers to relinquish their passports so they can’t quit their jobs or move back to their home countries, often forces them to work without wages, dictates where they live under squalid conditions in labor camps, doesn’t allow them to drive.

The absolute monarchy that rules Qatar responded to public exposure of its labor practices by doing an investigation of the labor camps & concluded 964 immigrant workers had died between 2012 & 2013. That figure should certainly be multiplied (lord knows how many times) but the mortality rate is not the only measure of violence. Thousands of immigrant domestic workers are subjected to violence & abuse in the privacy of homes.

Blatter-ass might be able to walk away from these allegations were it not for the massive protests against the World Cup & FIFA in Brazil. Thousands of Brazilians, including students, striking school teachers, bus drivers, Indigenous tribes, favela dwellers, homeless activists, are out in 12 cities & setting up roadblocks & Occupy-style encampments; protests are being organized in up to fifity cities. Banners declare “FIFA go home,” “The cup without the people, all to the streets again!” & “Na Copa vai ter luta” (The Cup will have protests).

This is a whole new twist on that “bread & circuses” thing from ancient Rome where athletic exhibitions were used to distract & appease public unrest & depoliticize the population. These elite games are peddled as a form of international entente when in fact they are fun & games for the neoliberal elite paid for by the blood & sweat of working people. Brazil paid a (seriously under-estimated) amount of $15 billion to bankroll the games out of the public coffers. Meanwhile education, health care, housing, transportation are in shambles & many Brazilians are protesting the number of construction workers who died because of the push to get the stadia built by the June games. Attendees at the games will pay an average of £6,000 (over US $10,000) to park their asses in their swanky boxes. If you can afford that kind of price tag, you can afford to bankroll your own amusements. Meanwhile, only a handful of the Brazilians who paid for the stadia will be employed to sell peanuts to the privileged.

Our fullest solidarity with the immigrant workers in Qatar; may they bring that feudal monarchy to its demise. And our fullest solidarity & gratitude with the working people of Brazil whose protests are helping take out FIFA; exposing neoliberalism’s version of bread & circuses; & challenging neoliberal plunder.

(Photo of Sao Paulo anti-FIFA protests by Nacho Doce/Reuters)

Mary Scully

| Snowden: An Open Letter to the People of Brazil!

An Open Letter to the People of Brazil ~ EDWARD SNOWDENFolhapress.

Six months ago, I stepped out from the shadows of the United States Government’s National Security Agency to stand in front of a journalist’s camera.

Espionage Whistleblower Edward Snowden to Seek Asylum in Brazil

I shared with the world evidence proving some governments are building a world-wide surveillance system to secretly track how we live, who we talk to, and what we say.

I went in front of that camera with open eyes, knowing that the decision would cost me family and my home, and would risk my life. I was motivated by a belief that the citizens of the world deserve to understand the system in which they live.

My greatest fear was that no one would listen to my warning. Never have I been so glad to have been so wrong. The reaction in certain countries has been particularly inspiring to me, and Brazil is certainly one of those.

At the NSA, I witnessed with growing alarm the surveillance of whole populations without any suspicion of wrongdoing, and it threatens to become the greatest human rights challenge of our time.

The NSA and other spying agencies tell us that for our own “safety” –for Dilma’s “safety,” for Petrobras’ “safety”– they have revoked our right to privacy and broken into our lives. And they did it without asking the public in any country, even their own.

Today, if you carry a cell phone in Sao Paolo, the NSA can and does keep track of your location: they do this 5 billion times a day to people around the world.

When someone in Florianopolis visits a website, the NSA keeps a record of when it happened and what you did there. If a mother in Porto Alegre calls her son to wish him luck on his university exam, NSA can keep that call log for five years or more.

They even keep track of who is having an affair or looking at pornography, in case they need to damage their target’s reputation.

American Senators tell us that Brazil should not worry, because this is not “surveillance,” it’s “data collection.” They say it is done to keep you safe. They’re wrong.

There is a huge difference between legal programs, legitimate spying, legitimate law enforcement –where individuals are targeted based on a reasonable, individualized suspicion – and these programs of dragnet mass surveillance that put entire populations under an all-seeing eye and save copies forever.

These programs were never about terrorism: they’re about economic spying, social control, and diplomatic manipulation. They’re about power.

Many Brazilian senators agree, and have asked for my assistance with their investigations of suspected crimes against Brazilian citizens.

I have expressed my willingness to assist wherever appropriate and lawful, but unfortunately the United States government has worked very hard to limit my ability to do so –going so far as to force down the Presidential Plane of Evo Morales to prevent me from traveling to Latin America!

Until a country grants permanent political asylum, the US government will continue to interfere with my ability to speak.

Six months ago, I revealed that the NSA wanted to listen to the whole world. Now, the whole world is listening back, and speaking out, too. And the NSA doesn’t like what it’s hearing.

The culture of indiscriminate worldwide surveillance, exposed to public debates and real investigations on every continent, is collapsing.

Only three weeks ago, Brazil led the United Nations Human Rights Committee to recognize for the first time in history that privacy does not stop where the digital network starts, and that the mass surveillance of innocents is a violation of human rights.

The tide has turned, and we can finally see a future where we can enjoy security without sacrificing our privacy. Our rights cannot be limited by a secret organization, and American officials should never decide the freedoms of Brazilian citizens.

Even the defenders of mass surveillance, those who may not be persuaded that our surveillance technologies have dangerously outpaced democratic controls, now agree that in democracies, surveillance of the public must be debated by the public.

My act of conscience began with a statement: “I don’t want to live in a world where everything that I say, everything I do, everyone I talk to, every expression of creativity or love or friendship is recorded.

That’s not something I’m willing to support, it’s not something I’m willing to build, and it’s not something I’m willing to live under.”

Days later, I was told my government had made me stateless and wanted to imprison me. The price for my speech was my passport, but I would pay it again: I will not be the one to ignore criminality for the sake of political comfort. I would rather be without a state than without a voice.

If Brazil hears only one thing from me, let it be this: when all of us band together against injustices and in defense of privacy and basic human rights, we can defend ourselves from even the most powerful systems.


snowden 1

| Brazil MPs intend to meet Edward Snowden in Russia!

Brazil MPs intend to meet Edward Snowden in Russia ~ Voice of Russia, Interfax

Brazilian MPs set up a special commission to investigate whether the US secret services were spying on the Brazilian leader, the lower house of Brazil’s parliament reported.

The group of MPs will come to Moscow to meet ex-CIA contractor Edward Snowden.

“The information that the NSA was spying on Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff is a very serious accusation demonstrating the vulnerability of citizens’ private life,” Brazilian MP Ivan Valenti, who suggested sending a commission to Moscow, said.

The US NSA is reported to have been spying on Brazil’s citizens, including Rousseffs’ telephone calls. The information came to light as a result of Edward Snowden’s revelations.
сноуден шереметьево аэропорт агент

Edward Snowden

© Photo: «Vesti.Ru»


US except1A


| Greenwald to publish UK secrets after Britain detains partner!

Greenwald to publish U.K. secrets after Britain detains partner ~ News Sources, War in Context.

Reuters reports: The journalist who first published secrets leaked by fugitive former U.S. intelligence agency contractor Edward Snowden vowed on Monday to publish more documents and said Britain will be “sorry” for detaining his partner for nine hours.

British authorities used anti-terrorism laws on Sunday to detain David Miranda, partner of U.S. journalist Glenn Greenwald, as he passed through London’s Heathrow airport.

Miranda, 28, a Brazilian citizen, said he was questioned for nine hours before being released without charge, minus his laptop, cellphone and memory sticks, which were seized.

Greenwald, a columnist for Britain’s the Guardian newspaper who is based in Rio de Janeiro, said the detention was an attempt to intimidate him for publishing documents leaked by Snowden disclosing U.S. surveillance of global internet communications.

Snowden, who has been granted asylum by Russia, gave Greenwald from 15,000 to 20,000 documents with details of the U.S. National Security Agency’s surveillance programs.

“I will be far more aggressive in my reporting from now. I am going to publish many more documents. I am going to publish things on England too. I have many documents on England’s spy system. I think they will be sorry for what they did,” Greenwald, speaking in Portuguese, told reporters at Rio’s airport where he met Miranda upon his return to Brazil.

“They wanted to intimidate our journalism, to show that they have power and will not remain passive but will attack us more intensely if we continue publishing their secrets,” he said.

Miranda told reporters that six British agents questioned him continuously about all aspects of his life during his detention in a room at Heathrow airport. He said he was freed and returned his passport only when he started shouting in the airport lounge.

Brazil’s government complained about Miranda’s detention in a statement on Sunday that said the use of the British anti-terrorism law was unjustified.

Many Brazilians are still upset with Britain’s anti-terrorism policies because of the death of Brazilian electrician Jean Charles de Menezes, who was mistaken for a suspect in a bombing attempt in 2005. Menezes was shot seven times in the head by police on board an underground train at a London station.

Reuters also reports: British authorities came under pressure on Monday to explain why anti-terrorism powers were used to detain for nine hours the partner of a journalist who has written articles about U.S. and British surveillance programmes based on leaks from Edward Snowden.

Brazilian David Miranda, the partner of American journalist Glenn Greenwald, was detained on Sunday at London’s Heathrow Airport where he was in transit on his way from Berlin to Rio de Janeiro. He was released without charge.

“The detention of David Miranda is a disgrace and reinforces the undoubted complicity of the UK in U.S. indiscriminate surveillance of law-abiding citizens,” Michael Mansfield, one of Britain’s leading human rights lawyers, told Reuters.

“The fact that Snowden, and now anyone remotely associated with him, are being harassed as potential spies and terrorists is sheer unadulterated state oppression,” he wrote in an email.

Related Posts…


UK False Economy1

| Full text of the Fifth BRICS Summit Declaration and action plan (2)

Full text of the Fifth BRICS Summit Declarationand action plan (2) ~ People’s Daily Online.

17. We reaffirm the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development’ s (UNCTAD) mandate as the focal point in the UN system dedicated to consider the interrelated issues of trade, investment, finance and technology from a development perspective. UNCTAD’s mandate and work are unique and necessary to deal with the challenges of development and growth in the increasingly interdependent global economy. We also reaffirm the importance of strengthening UNCTAD’s capacity to deliver on its programs of consensus building, policy dialogue, research, technical cooperation and capacity building, so that it is better equipped to deliver on its development mandate.

18. We acknowledge the important role that State Owned Companies (SOCs) play in the economy and encourage our SOCs to explore ways of cooperation, exchange of information and best practices.

19. We recognize the fundamental role played by Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) in the economies of our countries. SMEs are major creators of jobs and wealth. In this regard, we will explore opportunities for cooperating in the field of SMEs and recognize the need for promoting dialogue among the respective Ministries and Agencies in charge of the theme, particularly with a view to promoting their international exchange and cooperation and fostering innovation, research and development.

20. We reiterate our strong commitment to the United Nations (UN) as the foremost multilateral forum entrusted with bringing about hope, peace, order and sustainable development to the world. The UN enjoys universal membership and is at the center of global governance and multilateralism. In this regard, we reaffirm the need for a comprehensive reform of the UN, including its Security Council, with a view to making it more representative, effective and efficient, so that it can be more responsive to global challenges. In this regard, China and Russia reiterate the importance they attach to the status of Brazil, India and South Africa in international affairs and support their aspiration to play a greater role in the UN.

21. We underscore our commitment to work together in the UN to continue our cooperation and strengthen multilateral approaches in international relations based on the rule of law and anchored in the Charter of the United Nations.

22. We are committed to building a harmonious world of lasting peace and common prosperity and reaffirm that the 21st century should be marked by peace, security, development, and cooperation. It is the overarching objective and strong shared desire for peace, security, development and cooperation that brought together BRICS countries.

23. We welcome the twentieth Anniversary of the World Conference on Human Rights and of the Vienna Declaration and Program of Action and agree to explore cooperation in the field of human rights.

24. We commend the efforts of the international community and acknowledge the central role of the African Union (AU) and its Peace and Security Council in conflict resolution in Africa. We call upon the UNSC to enhance cooperation with the African Union, and its Peace and Security Council, pursuant to UNSC resolutions in this regard. We express our deep concern with instability stretching from North Africa, in particular the Sahel, and the Gulf of Guinea. We also remain concerned about reports of deterioration in humanitarian conditions in some countries.

25. We welcome the appointment of the new Chairperson of the AU Commission as an affirmation of the leadership of women. (more)

26. We express our deep concern with the deterioration of the security and humanitarian situation in Syria and condemn the increasing violations of human rights and of international humanitarian law as a result of continued violence. We believe that the Joint Communique of the Geneva Action Group provides a basis for resolution of the Syrian crisis and reaffirm our opposition to any further militarization of the conflict. A Syrian-led political process leading to a transition can be achieved only through broad national dialogue that meets the legitimate aspirations of all sections of Syrian society and respect for Syrian independence, territorial integrity and sovereignty as expressed by the Geneva Joint Communique and appropriate UNSC resolutions. We support the efforts of the UN-League of Arab States Joint Special Representative. In view of the deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Syria, we call upon all parties to allow and facilitate immediate, safe, full and unimpeded access to humanitarian organizations to all in need of assistance. We urge all parties to ensure the safety of humanitarian workers.


27. We welcome the admission of Palestine as an Observer State to the United Nations. We are concerned at the lack of progress in the Middle East Peace Process and call on the international community to assist both Israel and Palestine to work towards a two-state solution with a contiguous and economically viable Palestinian state, existing side by side in peace with Israel, within internationally recognized borders, based on those existing on 4 June 1967, with East Jerusalem as its capital. We are deeply concerned about the construction of Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, which is a violation of international law and harmful to the peace process. In recalling the primary responsibility of the UNSC in maintaining international peace and security, we note the importance that the Quartet reports regularly to the Council about its efforts, which should contribute to concrete progress.

28. We believe there is no alternative to a negotiated solution to the Iranian nuclear issue. We recognize Iran’s right to peaceful uses of nuclear energy consistent with its international obligations, and support resolution of the issues involved through political and diplomatic means and dialogue, including between the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Iran and in accordance with the provisions of the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions and consistent with Iran’s obligations under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons(NPT). We are concerned about threats of military action as well as unilateral sanctions. We note the recent talks held in Almaty and hope that all outstanding issues relating to Iran’ s nuclear program will be resolved through discussions and diplomatic means.

29. Afghanistan needs time, development assistance and cooperation, preferential access to world markets, foreign investment and a clear end-state strategy to attain lasting peace and stability. We support the global community’s commitment to Afghanistan, enunciated at the Bonn International Conference in December 2011, to remain engaged over the transformation decade from 2015-2024. We affirm our commitment to support Afghanistan’ s emergence as a peaceful, stable and democratic state, free of terrorism and extremism, and underscore the need for more effective regional and international cooperation for the stabilization of Afghanistan, including by combating terrorism. We extend support to the efforts aimed at combating illicit traffic in opiates originating in Afghanistan within the framework of the Paris Pact.

30. We commend the efforts of the AU, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and Mali aimed at restoring sovereignty and territorial integrity of Mali. We support the civilian efforts of the Malian Government and its international community partners in realizing the transitional program leading up to the presidential and legislative elections. We emphasize the importance of political inclusiveness and economic and social development in order for Mali to achieve sustainable peace and stability. We express concern about the reports of the deterioration in humanitarian conditions in Mali and call upon the international community to continue to cooperate with Mali and its neighboring countries in order to ensure humanitarian assistance to civilian population affected by the armed conflict.

【1】 【2】 【3】

________________________________________________________________________BRICS 1

| Refusing dollar hegemony BRICS reach deal over development bank!

BRICS reach deal over development bank ~ Al Jazeera.


Deal by emerging nations meeting in South Africa one of several moves to challenge Western-backed monetary institutions.


The BRICS grouping of emerging powers have reached a deal to establish a development bank that would rival Western-backed institutions.

“It’s done,” South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said after meeting with his counterparts from Brazil, Russia, India and China.


Economic data shows that the grouping of Brazil, China, India, Russia and South Africa now account for 25 percent of global GDP and 40 percent of the world’s population.

China has become the informal leader of the group. With a GDP of $8.25 trillion in 2012, the IMF
estimates that the Chinese economy will climb by a whopping 8.2 percent in 2013.It remains the globe’s most-populated country, with 1.34 billion inhabitants.

Brazil: With a GDP of $2.425 trillion in 2012, Brazil is the world’s seventh largest economy. It holds only a modest place in world trade activity, however, and experienced sluggish growth of one percent last year.

Russia: Ranking ninth on the list of the world’s biggest economies, Russia accumulated a GDP of $1.953 trillion in 2012, boosted mainly by its gas exports, making it the world’s eighth largest exporter.

India: Despite its population of 1.24 billion, India remains a smaller player among the world’s economies, falling into a 10th place with a GDP worth 1.946 trillion.

South Africa: Smallest of the BRICS economies is South Africa. Placing 41st world exporters, the country has a GDP of $390 billion and a population of 50.5 million.

“We made very good progress, the leaders will announce the details,” he added, just hours before the opening of a BRICS summit in the South African port city of Durban on Tuesday.

But Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said that the group’s ministers were unable to agree on some of the details of the project.

“A decision on the location of the bank and funding still needs to be made,” he told reporters in Durban, adding that
further steps would be required before the BRICS development bank could be created.

Together the BRICS account for 25 percent of global GDP and 40 percent of the world’s population.

But members say institutions such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the UN Security Council are not changing fast enough to reflect their new-found clout.

Disputes remain over what the new bank will do, with all sides trying to mould the institution to their own foreign or domestic policy goals, and with each looking for assurances of an equitable return on their initial investment of about $10bn.

China and Brazil also signed an agreement at Tuesday’s meeting to do billions of dollars of trade in their local currencies, as the BRICS nations work to lessen their dependence on the US dollar and euro.

Finance ministers Lou Jiwei of China and Guido Mantega of Brazil signed the deal, amid the continuing euro crisis and little signs of growth in the West.

‘Positive headway’

Xi Jinping, who has underscored the growing importance of the group by making Durban his first summit as China’s president, had earlier expressed hopes for “positive headway” in establishing the bank.

South African President Jacob Zuma has lauded the summit as a means of addressing his country’s chronic economic problems, including high unemployment.

“BRICS provides an opportunity for South Africa to promote its competitiveness,” Zuma said in a speech on the eve of the summit.

“It is an opportunity to move further in our drive to promote economic growth and confront the challenge of poverty, inequality and unemployment that afflicts our country.”

In a keynote speech in Tanzania on Monday, Xi pledged Beijing’s “sincere friendship” with the continent, and a relationship that respects Africa’s “dignity and independence”.

If initiatives such as the bank succeed it would send a loud message to the US and European nations that the current global balance of power is unworkable.

Pov B1


eliminate hunger

head_up_ass E