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Scientists tell us that we have 10 years (2009, now it is only still 7 years) to change the way we live, avert the depletion of natural resources and the catastrophic evolution of the Earth’s climate. Share it! And act for the planet.

Datei:Zugspitze Airview 01.jpg

We are living in exceptional times. Scientists tell us that we have 10 years to change the way we live, avert the depletion of natural resources and the catastrophic evolution of the Earth’s climate.

The stakes are high for us and our children. Everyone should take part in the effort, and HOME has been conceived to take a message of mobilization out to every human being.

For this purpose, HOME needs to be free. A patron, the PPR Group, made this possible. EuropaCorp, the distributor, also pledged not to make any profit because Home is a non-profit film.

HOME has been made for you : share it! And act for the planet.


Дом (Russian version)

Published on Jun 2, 2009

На долю нашего поколения выпало жить в исключительное время, время принятия решений. По прогнозам ученых, у нас осталось всего лишь 10 лет, чтобы спасти наше будущее и

ube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7hFivbgIEqk&list=UUsO1AOwtvyPFWnxDNy9pMqw&index=5]

Home (Arabic)

نحن نعيش في زمن حرج. يخبرنا العلماء أنه أمامنا عشر سنوات كي نغير فيها أسلوب حياتنا ونتجنب استنزاف الثروات الطبيعية والتغيرات الخطرة في مناخ الأرض. إن المخاطر التي تهددنا وتهدد أولادنا كبيرة. لقد أخذ “بيتنا” على عاتقه مهمة توعية كل إنسان حتى يشارك في الجهود المبذولة لمواجهة تلك المخاطر.

ولهذا الغرض ، من الضروري أن يعرض “بيتنا” بالمجان. ولقد نجحت مجموعة PPR في ذلك. كما تعهدت الشركة الموزعة EuropaCorp بعدم جني أي ربح لأن “بيتنا” فيلم غير ربحي.

 

Home (Arabic)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E9-k7wtS3bg

Home (Italiano)

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Appel à la population mondiale: formons une «alliance internationale pour la survie” et organisons un “marche pour la survie” – L’initiative afro-allemande, Black & White lance un appel compte tenu de l´intensification de la crise mondiale . L’initiative afro-allemande, Black & White lance un appel compte tenu de l´intensification de la crise mondiale .

kongokindfr

L’initiative afro-allemande, Black & White lance un appel compte tenu de l´intensification de la crise mondiale .
L’initiative afro-allemande, Black & White lance un appel compte tenu de l´intensification de la crise mondiale .
Appel à la population mondiale:
formons une «alliance internationale pour la survie” et organisons un “marche pour la survie”
Chaque heure, 300 enfants dans le monde meurent de faim! Un milliard sur sept milliards de personnes souffrent de la faim, bien que le monde á la capacité de nourrir 12 milliards de personnes. La violence et la guerre sont de plus en plus répandues, beaucoup de gens quittent leurs patries et se retrouvent en Exil ! Les classes dirigeantes sont de plus en plus tournées vers la guerre, car elles croient que la guerre leur apporte plus d’argent que cela leur coûte ! Peu importe le degré de la douleur, les populations en sont grandement victimes. Ces guerres et l´armement coutent de l’argent dont le monde a besoin pour que tous les besoins fondamentaux soient assurés : la nourriture, le logement, l’éducation et la santé. Et les guerres peuvent facilement devenir une nouvelle confrontation mondiale, étant donné que les armes de destruction massive peuvent mener á une catastrophe inimaginable!
La production mondiale a augmenté plus que jamais grâce à la cooperation internationale ! Presque tous les produits sont devenus un produit mondial, composé des idées, du travail, du capital et des matériaux de nombreux pays . Mais jamais la richesse et la pauvreté n´ont été aussi inégalement réparties dans le monde! Le luxe et l´extravagance croissent de plus en plus au niveau mondial ainsi que l’extrême pauvreté, la faim et la souffrance,et en particulier la jeune génération, et les enfants sont concernés par ces extremes fléaux: Beaucoup n’ont aucune de bénéficier d´ une bonne éducation et d´un emploi stable, afin d´avoir une bonne perspective d´avenir. Même dans les pays industrialisés, les possibilités pour les jeunes se réduisent déjà ! Et la situation va continuer à s’aggraver: Aujourd’hui, le monde exploite déjà une fois et demie plus l’environnement qu´il est susceptible d’exploiter pour assurer la survie de la terre et ce, de façon permanente! Pendant des années, les catastrophes écologiques augmentent en gravité et fréquence. Nous surexploitons déja le monde, alors que 80 pour cent de la population vit dans la pauvreté et la population mondiale augmentera de sept à huit ou même neuf milliards.
presque tout le monde percoit de plus en plus la menace et le désir de se défendre! Nous devons nous rappeler qu’une telle crise et un tel sentiment de menace a conduit à la prise du pouvoir après la crise financière mondiale de 1929 par des despotes. Ces Despotes ont pu inciter les gens à voir en les autres nations et minorités les causes de la crise et de la menace et á utiliser la force contre eux et leur faire la guerre . Cela a plongé le monde dans une catastrophe qui a couté la vie á 60 millions de personnes dans différentes parties du globe terrestre et dévasté de vastes territoires . Et la crise actuelle est à bien á comparer avec la crise survenue après 1929. Tous les problèmes qui ont conduit à la crise de 2008 n’ont pas disparu, mais se sont en outre exacerbés.
Pourquoi rien ne se passe? Notre système mondial est encore un système dans lequel les plus forts l’emportent au détriment des faibles! Les banques et les fonds investissent l’argent des riches où les plus bas salaires sont payés, investissent dans des machines et rendent les gens inutiles au travail provoquant par lá l´augmentation des taux de chômage et investissant dans des pays ayant les plus faibles normes environnementales et les plus faibles taux d´imposition. Cela leur donne (au moins temporairement) les plus fortes hausses de l’actif, mais ruine la vie des gens qui vivent de leur travail, détruisent l’environnement et amoindrissent les recettes publiques, ruinent même l’économie dans son ensemble, parce que ce cours conduit à l’aggravation de la crise, puisque les gens ne peuvent pas acheter les produits qu´ ils ont fabriqués. En outre, les Etats qui ont la plus grande puissance politique et militaire, se servent de ce pouvoir dans les intérêts des élites dirigeantes de leurs pays, pour imposer des relations injustes, inéquitables avec les autres Etats ou entretenir et placer leurs ressources sous leur contrôle. Partout les intérêts des élites nanties déterminent la politique , ce ne sont pas les interets de la coopération pour la survie de chacun d’entre nous et l’humanité dans son ensemble qui determinent la politique.
La tentative de créer après la Seconde Guerre mondiale, un ordre mondial qui empêche de telles crises et une nouvelle guerre mondiale, est complètement sabotée ! L´esprit de la Déclaration universelle des droits de l´Homme de 1948 conclue par les Etats selon lequel nous sommes une famille humaine commune à travers le monde et avons le devoir d´agir ensemble et de prendre soin les uns des autres,ne détermine pas encore aujourd´hui les pensées et les sentiments. Le projet de construire le monde comme base pour le nouvel ordre des relations amicales entre les peuples de différentes nations et religions, n’a guère été mis en œuvre. La vision de la DUDH est que les pays travaillent ensemble afin que les ressources ne soient pas gaspillées dans la recherche de la puissance des Etats! Elles doivent être utilisées pour assurer á tous les Hommes dans le monde la vie dans la dignité. les populations ne sont toujours pas arriver á faire prévaloir ces buts contre les classes dirigeantes dans leurs États, lesquels voient encore l’Etat comme leur propriété .
Nous ne considérons pas cette compréhension et vision de travailler ensemble comme une famille humaine pour être juste et même nécessaire pour l’existence de l’humanité! En particulier dans l’économie mondiale d’aujourd’hui, dans laquelle nous sommes tous interdépendants. Nous vous suggérons donc maintenant de créer une coalition mondiale afin que la présente Déclaration universelle des droits de l’homme soit finalement mise en œuvre pour stopper la marche vers une autre catastrophe de l’humanité.
Aujourd’hui, nous avons besoin d’une coopération mondiale face à des défis existentiels, et si les élites ne peuvent pas le faire parce qu’elles sont dans les contraintes du système de concurrence et de conquete du pouvoir , nous les citoyens, “The Common People», devons construire et imposer cette coopération. Nous, qui ne sommes pas consultés , et souvent pas informés et enseignés sur ces réalités mondiales devont agir maintenant, sinon l’humanité n’a aucune chance de survivre! Nous devons apprendre à comprendre les grands enjeux globaux et explorer les possibilités qui s’offrent à surmonter la crise! Nous devons apprendre, en dépit et contre l’influence des médias de masse contrôlés par les élites encourager d´ autres personnes qui luttent avec nous pour la survie! Et qu’ils n’aient plus á suivre á l´aveuglette des dirigeants qui nous montent les uns contre les autres, nous incitent á nous affronter entre nous. Mais si nous continuons á nous considerer sur la base de statuts divers tels que musulmans ou chrétiens, allemand, américain, russe ou chinois, blanc ou noir, homme ou femme et non d’abord comme des personnes qui peuvent survivre seulement en coopérant , alors l’humanité n’a aucune chance!
Si nous persistons dans ce système actuel des choses nous avons perdu d´avance , et certainement nos enfants et nos petits-enfants aussi! Par ailleurs si nous nous réveillons , nous avons au moins une chance de plus! Nous sommes déterminés à saisir cette chance!
Nous vous encourageons à former une “alliance mondiale pour la survie.” Nous devrions commencer à favoriser l’amitié mondiale entre les gens, entre les gens du Nord et du Sud, chrétiens, musulmans et juifs, Chinois, Américains, Africains et Européens. Les gens de tous les partis, religions, nations, ethnies et couleurs de peau doivent maintenant travailler ensemble pour la survie, nous avons dans nos cultures diverses tous les ingrédients que nous pouvons apporter pour imposer la cooprération mondiale et supplanter le pouvoir qui nous conduit vers des catastrophes pour des motifs égoistes.
Nous appelons les citoyens à participer activement, intellectuels, institutions religieuses, écoles et universités, travailleurs et organisations professionnelles, agriculteurs, femmes et les organisations jeunes, ils peuvent tous créer l’Alliance pour la survie et participer au développement et á la mise en oeuvre des réformes necessaries et possible.
Nous proposons les objectifs suivants pour l’alliance mondiale “Assurer la survie” !
1) le renforcement et l’expansion de la culture démocratique et la démocratie du plan local au plan mondial
2) Le travail sur l’achèvement des guerres actuelles par la négociation, sur la prévention des éclatements de violence, sur la création d’institutions mondiales pour la résolution pacifique des conflits, et sur le désarmement
3) la transformation de notre mode de vie et d’affaires, afin que la planète ne soit plus exploitée.
4) l’orientation de notre économie à surmonter la pauvreté, par le biais de la sécurité sociale et la justice sociale
5) Créer une culture de tolérance et de respect mutuel, de solidarité et de liberté
6) l´objectif de la formation est de promouvoir la confiance en soi des individus et leur indépendance qafin qu´ils soient prêts à participer, conformément à la Déclaration des droits de l’homme á la configuration d’un monde durable.
Nous, de L´organisation afro-allemande” INITIATIVE BLACK&WHITE” encourageons á batir pour le support de cette alliance des ateliers et des comités et au travers de ceux-ci , d´organiser la connexion des individus, la construction des relations amicales, l´échange des informations, de la formation et des actions.
Comme une action commune, nous proposons l´organisation d´une “marche pour la survie” ! Cette marche servira á publiquement mettre en avant les enjeux globaux et urgents de l´humanité et encourager ainsi les Hommes á batir une alliance mondiale pour la survie de tous.
Cette Marche á travers les institutions devra seulement etre achevée lorsque les Gouvernements, Administrations et l´Economie se limiteront enfin strictement á ce que nos différents Etats ont conclu á l´issue de la promulgation de la Déclaration universelle des Droits de l´Homme en 1948. A savoir:
De créer définitivement un monde dans lequel, tous les Hommes ou qu´ils se trouvent ont un droit á une vie sans misère et crainte, peuvent participer de manière égalitaire au développement mondial , la violence et la guerre sur la terre sont bannies.
Initiative Black & White e.V 37281 Wanfried Tel: 05655-924981 b.u.w@gmx.net
Chaque heure, 300 enfants dans le monde meurent de faim! Un milliard sur sept milliards de personnes souffrent de la faim, bien que le monde á la capacité de nourrir 12 milliards de personnes. La violence et la guerre sont de plus en plus répandues, beaucoup de gens quittent leurs patries et se retrouvent en Exil ! Les classes dirigeantes sont de plus en plus tournées vers la guerre, car elles croient que la guerre leur apporte plus d’argent que cela leur coûte ! Peu importe le degré de la douleur, les populations en sont grandement victimes. Ces guerres et l´armement coutent de l’argent dont le monde a besoin pour que tous les besoins fondamentaux soient assurés : la nourriture, le logement, l’éducation et la santé. Et les guerres peuvent facilement devenir une nouvelle confrontation mondiale, étant donné que les armes de destruction massive peuvent mener á une catastrophe inimaginable!
La production mondiale a augmenté plus que jamais grâce à la cooperation internationale ! Presque tous les produits sont devenus un produit mondial, composé des idées, du travail, du capital et des matériaux de nombreux pays . Mais jamais la richesse et la pauvreté n´ont été aussi inégalement réparties dans le monde! Le luxe et l´extravagance croissent de plus en plus au niveau mondial ainsi que l’extrême pauvreté, la faim et la souffrance,et en particulier la jeune génération, et les enfants sont concernés par ces extremes fléaux: Beaucoup n’ont aucune de bénéficier d´ une bonne éducation et d´un emploi stable, afin d´avoir une bonne perspective d´avenir. Même dans les pays industrialisés, les possibilités pour les jeunes se réduisent déjà ! Et la situation va continuer à s’aggraver: Aujourd’hui, le monde exploite déjà une fois et demie plus l’environnement qu´il est susceptible d’exploiter pour assurer la survie de la terre et ce, de façon permanente! Pendant des années, les catastrophes écologiques augmentent en gravité et fréquence. Nous surexploitons déja le monde, alors que 80 pour cent de la population vit dans la pauvreté et la population mondiale augmentera de sept à huit ou même neuf milliards.
presque tout le monde percoit de plus en plus la menace et le désir de se défendre! Nous devons nous rappeler qu’une telle crise et un tel sentiment de menace a conduit à la prise du pouvoir après la crise financière mondiale de 1929 par des despotes. Ces Despotes ont pu inciter les gens à voir en les autres nations et minorités les causes de la crise et de la menace et á utiliser la force contre eux et leur faire la guerre . Cela a plongé le monde dans une catastrophe qui a couté la vie á 60 millions de personnes dans différentes parties du globe terrestre et dévasté de vastes territoires . Et la crise actuelle est à bien á comparer avec la crise survenue après 1929. Tous les problèmes qui ont conduit à la crise de 2008 n’ont pas disparu, mais se sont en outre exacerbés.
Pourquoi rien ne se passe? Notre système mondial est encore un système dans lequel les plus forts l’emportent au détriment des faibles! Les banques et les fonds investissent l’argent des riches où les plus bas salaires sont payés, investissent dans des machines et rendent les gens inutiles au travail provoquant par lá l´augmentation des taux de chômage et investissant dans des pays ayant les plus faibles normes environnementales et les plus faibles taux d´imposition. Cela leur donne (au moins temporairement) les plus fortes hausses de l’actif, mais ruine la vie des gens qui vivent de leur travail, détruisent l’environnement et amoindrissent les recettes publiques, ruinent même l’économie dans son ensemble, parce que ce cours conduit à l’aggravation de la crise, puisque les gens ne peuvent pas acheter les produits qu´ ils ont fabriqués. En outre, les Etats qui ont la plus grande puissance politique et militaire, se servent de ce pouvoir dans les intérêts des élites dirigeantes de leurs pays, pour imposer des relations injustes, inéquitables avec les autres Etats ou entretenir et placer leurs ressources sous leur contrôle. Partout les intérêts des élites nanties déterminent la politique , ce ne sont pas les interets de la coopération pour la survie de chacun d’entre nous et l’humanité dans son ensemble qui determinent la politique.
La tentative de créer après la Seconde Guerre mondiale, un ordre mondial qui empêche de telles crises et une nouvelle guerre mondiale, est complètement sabotée ! L´esprit de la Déclaration universelle des droits de l´Homme de 1948 conclue par les Etats selon lequel nous sommes une famille humaine commune à travers le monde et avons le devoir d´agir ensemble et de prendre soin les uns des autres,ne détermine pas encore aujourd´hui les pensées et les sentiments. Le projet de construire le monde comme base pour le nouvel ordre des relations amicales entre les peuples de différentes nations et religions, n’a guère été mis en œuvre. La vision de la DUDH est que les pays travaillent ensemble afin que les ressources ne soient pas gaspillées dans la recherche de la puissance des Etats! Elles doivent être utilisées pour assurer á tous les Hommes dans le monde la vie dans la dignité. les populations ne sont toujours pas arriver á faire prévaloir ces buts contre les classes dirigeantes dans leurs États, lesquels voient encore l’Etat comme leur propriété .
Nous ne considérons pas cette compréhension et vision de travailler ensemble comme une famille humaine pour être juste et même nécessaire pour l’existence de l’humanité! En particulier dans l’économie mondiale d’aujourd’hui, dans laquelle nous sommes tous interdépendants. Nous vous suggérons donc maintenant de créer une coalition mondiale afin que la présente Déclaration universelle des droits de l’homme soit finalement mise en œuvre pour stopper la marche vers une autre catastrophe de l’humanité.
Aujourd’hui, nous avons besoin d’une coopération mondiale face à des défis existentiels, et si les élites ne peuvent pas le faire parce qu’elles sont dans les contraintes du système de concurrence et de conquete du pouvoir , nous les citoyens, “The Common People», devons construire et imposer cette coopération. Nous, qui ne sommes pas consultés , et souvent pas informés et enseignés sur ces réalités mondiales devont agir maintenant, sinon l’humanité n’a aucune chance de survivre! Nous devons apprendre à comprendre les grands enjeux globaux et explorer les possibilités qui s’offrent à surmonter la crise! Nous devons apprendre, en dépit et contre l’influence des médias de masse contrôlés par les élites encourager d´ autres personnes qui luttent avec nous pour la survie! Et qu’ils n’aient plus á suivre á l´aveuglette des dirigeants qui nous montent les uns contre les autres, nous incitent á nous affronter entre nous. Mais si nous continuons á nous considerer sur la base de statuts divers tels que musulmans ou chrétiens, allemand, américain, russe ou chinois, blanc ou noir, homme ou femme et non d’abord comme des personnes qui peuvent survivre seulement en coopérant , alors l’humanité n’a aucune chance!
Si nous persistons dans ce système actuel des choses nous avons perdu d´avance , et certainement nos enfants et nos petits-enfants aussi! Par ailleurs si nous nous réveillons , nous avons au moins une chance de plus! Nous sommes déterminés à saisir cette chance!
Nous vous encourageons à former une “alliance mondiale pour la survie.” Nous devrions commencer à favoriser l’amitié mondiale entre les gens, entre les gens du Nord et du Sud, chrétiens, musulmans et juifs, Chinois, Américains, Africains et Européens. Les gens de tous les partis, religions, nations, ethnies et couleurs de peau doivent maintenant travailler ensemble pour la survie, nous avons dans nos cultures diverses tous les ingrédients que nous pouvons apporter pour imposer la cooprération mondiale et supplanter le pouvoir qui nous conduit vers des catastrophes pour des motifs égoistes.
Nous appelons les citoyens à participer activement, intellectuels, institutions religieuses, écoles et universités, travailleurs et organisations professionnelles, agriculteurs, femmes et les organisations jeunes, ils peuvent tous créer l’Alliance pour la survie et participer au développement et á la mise en oeuvre des réformes necessaries et possible.
Nous proposons les objectifs suivants pour l’alliance mondiale “Assurer la survie” !
1) le renforcement et l’expansion de la culture démocratique et la démocratie du plan local au plan mondial
2) Le travail sur l’achèvement des guerres actuelles par la négociation, sur la prévention des éclatements de violence, sur la création d’institutions mondiales pour la résolution pacifique des conflits, et sur le désarmement
3) la transformation de notre mode de vie et d’affaires, afin que la planète ne soit plus exploitée.
4) l’orientation de notre économie à surmonter la pauvreté, par le biais de la sécurité sociale et la justice sociale
5) Créer une culture de tolérance et de respect mutuel, de solidarité et de liberté
6) l´objectif de la formation est de promouvoir la confiance en soi des individus et leur indépendance qafin qu´ils soient prêts à participer, conformément à la Déclaration des droits de l’homme á la configuration d’un monde durable.
Nous, de L´organisation afro-allemande” INITIATIVE BLACK&WHITE” encourageons á batir pour le support de cette alliance des ateliers et des comités et au travers de ceux-ci , d´organiser la connexion des individus, la construction des relations amicales, l´échange des informations, de la formation et des actions.
Comme une action commune, nous proposons l´organisation d´une “marche pour la survie” ! Cette marche servira á publiquement mettre en avant les enjeux globaux et urgents de l´humanité et encourager ainsi les Hommes á batir une alliance mondiale pour la survie de tous.
Cette Marche á travers les institutions devra seulement etre achevée lorsque les Gouvernements, Administrations et l´Economie se limiteront enfin strictement á ce que nos différents Etats ont conclu á l´issue de la promulgation de la Déclaration universelle des Droits de l´Homme en 1948. A savoir:
De créer définitivement un monde dans lequel, tous les Hommes ou qu´ils se trouvent ont un droit á une vie sans misère et crainte, peuvent participer de manière égalitaire au développement mondial , la violence et la guerre sur la terre sont bannies.
Initiative Black & White e.V 37281 Wanfried Tel: 05655-924981 b.u.w@gmx.net

 

Government pays Libyan dissident’s family £2.2m over MI6-aided rendition: Ministers have agree to pay more than £2m to the family of a prominent Libyan dissident abducted with the help of MI6 and secretly flown to Tripoli where he was tortured by the security police of the former dictator Muammar Gaddafi. Having sought for years to avoid the agents of the Libyan dictator, Sami al-Saadi was forced on board a plane in Hong Kong with his wife and four young children in a joint UK-US-Libyan operation. They were then flown toLibya, where all of them were initially imprisoned. Saadi was held and tortured for years.

Government pays Libyan dissident’s family £2.2m over MI6-aided rendition

Sami al-Saadi, wife and four children were secretly flown from Hong Kong to Tripoli where he was tortured by Gaddafi police

Libyan dissident Sami al-Saadi with his daughter Khadija in Tripoli

Libyan dissident Sami al-Saadi with his daughter Khadija in Tripoli in October 2011, three months after his release from prison. Photograph: Marco Longari/AFP

Ministers have agree to pay more than £2m to the family of a prominent Libyan dissident abducted with the help of MI6 and secretly flown to Tripoli where he was tortured by the security police of the former dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

Having sought for years to avoid the agents of the Libyan dictator, Sami al-Saadi was forced on board a plane in Hong Kong with his wife and four young children in a joint UK-US-Libyan operation. They were then flown toLibya, where all of them were initially imprisoned. Saadi was held and tortured for years.

The Saadi family had accepted a settlement of £2.23m, the high court heard on Thursday. The government paid the sum by way of compensation and without admitting any liability.

Evidence of the UK’s role in the operation – believed to be the only case where an entire family was subjected to “extraordinary rendition” – came to light after Gaddafi’s fall in 2011.

CIA correspondence with Libyan intelligence, found in the spy chief Moussa Koussa’s office in Tripoli by Human Rights Watch, states: “We are … aware that your service had been co-operating with the British to effect [Saadi’s] removal to Tripoli … the Hong Kong government may be able to co-ordinate with you to render [Saadi] and his family into your custody.”

The operation was arranged in 2004 at the time of Tony Blair’s “deal in the desert” with Gaddafi, after which UK intelligence services helped track down and hand over his opponents.

Another Libyan victim was Abdel Hakim Belhaj, who was rendered alongside his pregnant wife. A letter from the MI6 head of counter-terrorism Sir Mark Allen to Koussa, also found in Tripoli, said: “I congratulate you on the safe arrival of [Belhaj]. This was the least we could do for you and for Libya. I know I did not pay for the air cargo [but] the intelligence [on him] was British.”

Belhaj is pursuing his legal action against the British government.

Saadi said on Thursday: “My family suffered enough when they were kidnapped and flown to Gaddafi’s Libya. They will now have the chance to complete their education in the new, free Libya. I will be able to afford the medical care I need because of the injuries I suffered in prison.”

He said: “I started this process believing that a British trial would get to the truth in my case. But today, with the government trying to push through secret courts, I feel that to proceed is not best for my family. I went through a secret trial once before, in Gaddafi’s Libya. In many ways, it was as bad as the torture. It is not an experience I care to repeat.

“Even now, the British government has never given an answer to the simple question: ‘Were you involved in the kidnap of me, my wife and my children?’ I think the payment speaks for itself.”

He said his family would donate some of the proceeds to support other Libyan torture victims.

“We look forward to the result of the police investigation and hope there will be a full and fair public inquiry into our case,” he said.

His eldest daughter, Khadija, who was rendered to Libya aged 12, said: “I wrote to [the then justice secretary] Ken Clarke when I heard about the secret courts plan, but he would not say that he would not seek to try my case in secret. I still feel this would have been unnecessary, unfair and unworthy of the UK. I hope the inquiry will be as open and as fair as the phone-hacking inquiry.”

Kat Craig, legal director of the charity Reprieve, which acts for the two families, said: “We now know that Tony Blair’s ‘deal in the desert’ was bought with ugly compromises. Perhaps the ugliest was for MI6 to deliver a whole family to one of the world’s most brutal dictators.”

Sapna Malik, of Leigh Day, the law firm representing the families, said: “The sheer terror experienced by the Saadi family when they were bundled on to their rendition flight and delivered up to their nemesis clearly lives with them all to this day. Having concluded one part of their quest for justice, they now look to the British criminal courts to hold those responsible for their ordeal to account and await the judge-led inquiry they have been promised.”

Belhaj, who last year led the battle for Tripoli, said: “When my friend Sami al-Saadi was freed from Abu Salim prison on 23 August 2011, he weighed seven stone. He was close to death. It is a miracle he survived his ordeal and is home with his family.”

The banking giant HSBC has escaped indictment for laundering billions of dollars for Mexican drug cartels and groups linked to al-Qaeda. Despite evidence of wrongdoing, the U.S. Department of Justice has allowed the bank to avoid prosecution and pay a $1.9 billion fine. No top HSBC officials will face charges, either. We’re joined by Rolling Stone contributing editor Matt Taibbi, author of “Griftopia: A Story of Bankers, Politicians, and the Most Audacious Power Grab in American History.” “You can do real time in jail in America for all kinds of ridiculous offenses,” Taibbi says. “Here we have a bank that laundered $800 million of drug money, and they can’t find a way to put anybody in jail for that. That sends an incredible message, not just to the financial sector but to everybody. It’s an obvious, clear double standard, where one set of people gets to break the rules as much as they want and another set of people can’t break any rules at all without going to jail.”

Hsbc-1

The banking giant HSBC has escaped indictment for laundering billions of dollars for Mexican drug cartels and groups linked to al-Qaeda. Despite evidence of wrongdoing, the U.S. Department of Justice has allowed the bank to avoid prosecution and pay a $1.9 billion fine. No top HSBC officials will face charges, either. We’re joined by Rolling Stone contributing editor Matt Taibbi, author of “Griftopia: A Story of Bankers, Politicians, and the Most Audacious Power Grab in American History.” “You can do real time in jail in America for all kinds of ridiculous offenses,” Taibbi says. “Here we have a bank that laundered $800 million of drug money, and they can’t find a way to put anybody in jail for that. That sends an incredible message, not just to the financial sector but to everybody. It’s an obvious, clear double standard, where one set of people gets to break the rules as much as they want and another set of people can’t break any rules at all without going to jail.” [includes rush transcript]

GUEST:

Matt Taibbi, contributing editor for Rolling Stone magazine and author of the book,Griftopia: A Story of Bankers, Politicians, and the Most Audacious Power Grab in American History.

RUSH TRANSCRIPT

This transcript is available free of charge. However, donations help us provide closed captioning for the deaf and hard of hearing on our TV broadcast. Thank you for your generous contribution.DONATE >

Transcript

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Well, let’s go on to HSBC. The banking giant has escaped indictment for laundering billions of dollars for Mexican drug cartels and groups linked to al-Qaeda. The bank reportedly supplied a billion dollars to a firm whose founder had ties to al-Qaeda and shipped billions in cash from Mexico to the United States despite warnings the money was coming from drug cartels. Earlier this year, a Senate investigation concluded that HSBC provided a, quote, “gateway for terrorists to gain access to U.S. dollars and the U.S. financial system.”

Despite evidence of wrongdoing, the Justice Department has allowed the bank to avoid prosecution and pay a $1.9 billion fine. No top HSBC officials will face charges. While it’s reportedly the largest penalty ever paid by a bank, the deal has come under wide criticism. Officials reportedly agreed to seek the fine over concerns that criminal charges would have hurt the global financial system.

Loretta Lynch is U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York.

LORETTA LYNCH: We are here today to announce the filing of criminal charges against HSBC Bank, both its U.S. entity, HSBC U.S., and the parent HSBC group, for its sustained and systemic failure to guard against the corruption of our financial system by drug traffickers and other criminals and for evading U.S. sanctions law. HSBC, as you know, is one of the largest financial institutions in the world, with affiliates and personnel spanning the globe. Yet during the relevant time periods, they failed to comply with the legal requirements incumbent on all U.S. financial institutions to have in place compliance mechanisms and safeguards to guard against being used for money laundering.

HSBC has admitted its guilt to the four-count information filed today, which sets forth two violations of the Bank Secrecy Act, a violation of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, or IEEPA, and violation of the Trading with the Enemy Act. As part of its resolution of these charges, HSBC has agreed to forfeit $1.256 billion, the largest forfeiture amount ever by a financial institution for a compliance failure.

AMY GOODMAN: That was U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch.

Meanwhile, HSBC Group Chief Executive Stuart Gulliver said in a statement, quote, “We accept responsibility for our past mistakes. We have said we are profoundly sorry for them.” He added the bank had, quote, “taken extensive and concerted steps to put in place the highest standards for the future.”

News of HSBC’s fine comes as three low-level traders were arrested in London as part of an international investigation into 16 international banks accused of rigging a key global interest rate used in contracts worth trillions of dollars. The London Interbank Offered Rate, known as Libor, is the average interest rate at which banks can borrow from each other. Some analysts say it defines the cost of money. The benchmark rate sets the borrowing costs of everything from mortgages to student loans to credit card accounts.

Well, for more on the latest bank scandals, we’re joined by Matt Taibbi, contributing editor for Rolling Stone magazine. His latest book is Griftopia: A Story of Bankers, Politicians, and the Most Audacious Power Grab in American History.

Now, how did Forbes put it, Matt? “What’s a bank got to do to get into some real trouble around here?”

MATT TAIBBI: Exactly, exactly. And what’s amazing about that is that’s Forbessaying that. I mean, universally, the reaction, even in—among the financial press, which is normally very bank-friendly and gives all these guys the benefit of the doubt, the reaction is, is “What do you have to do to get a criminal indictment?” What HSBC has now admitted to is, more or less, the worst behavior that a bank can possibly be guilty of. You know, they violated the Trading with the Enemy Act, the Bank Secrecy Act. And we’re talking about massive amounts of money. It was $9 billion that they failed to supervise properly. These crimes were so obvious that apparently the cartels in Mexico specifically designed boxes to put cash in so that they would fit through the windows of HSBC teller windows. So, it was so out in the open, these crimes, and there’s going to be no criminal prosecution whatsoever, which is incredible.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And emails found where bank officials were instructing officials in Iran and in some other countries at how best to hide their efforts to move money into their system?

MATT TAIBBI: Exactly, yeah, and that’s true at HSBC, and apparently we have a very similar scandal involving another British bank, Standard Chartered, which also paid an enormous fine recently for laundering money for—through Iran. This, again, comes on the heels of the Libor scandal, which has already caught up two major British banks—the Royal Bank of Scotland and Barclays. So, you have essentially all of the major British banks now are inveigled in these enormous scandals. We have a couple of arrests, you know, today involving low-level people in the Libor thing, but it doesn’t look like any major players are going to be indicted criminally for any of this.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And this whole argument that the bank is too big to indict because of the threat to the world financial system, most people don’t know thatHSBC stands for Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation. It’s a British bank that goes back to the early days of British colonialism in Asia.

MATT TAIBBI: Sure.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And is it too big to be indicted?

MATT TAIBBI: The amazing thing about that rationale is that it’s exactly the opposite of the truth. The message that this sends to everybody, when banks commit crimes and nobody is punished for it, is that you can do it again. You know, if there’s no criminal penalty for committing even the most obvious kinds of crimes, that tells everybody, investors all over the world, that the banking system is inherently unsafe. And so, the message is, this is not a move to preserve the banking system at all. In fact, it’s incredibly destructive. It undermines the entire world confidence in the banking system. It’s an incredible decision that, again, is met with surprise even with—by people in the financial community.

AMY GOODMAN: On Tuesday, Thomas Curry, head of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the lead regulator for HSBC in the U.S., defended the settlement.

THOMAS CURRY: These actions send a strong message to the bank and to the financial services industry to make compliance with the law a priority to safeguard their institutions from being misused in ways that threaten American lives.

AMY GOODMAN: That’s Thomas Curry, head of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. It seems like a lot of people who are in prison right now—low-level thieves, criminals, drug launderers, people who have been accused of working with al-Qaeda—perhaps could appeal their convictions now and get out of jail.

MATT TAIBBI: Right. Right, yeah, exactly. I was in court yesterday, in criminal court in Brooklyn. I saw somebody come out of—come into court who had just been overnight in jail for walking from one subway car to another in front of a policeman. You can do real time in jail in America for all kinds of ridiculous offenses, for taking up two subway seats in New York City, if you fall asleep in the subway. People go to jail for that all the time in this country, for having a marijuana stem in your pocket. There are 50,000 marijuana possession cases in New York City alone every year. And here we have a bank that laundered $800 million of drug money, and they can’t find a way to put anybody in jail for that. That sends an incredible message not just to the financial sector but to everybody. It’s an obvious, clear double standard, where one set of people gets to break the rules as much as they want and another set of people can’t break any rules at all without going to jail. And I just don’t see how they don’t see this problem.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Well, Matt, Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer outlined some of HSBC’s alleged drug cartel ties.

ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL LANNY BREUER: From 2006 to 2010, the Sinaloa cartel in Mexico, the Norte del Valle cartel in Colombia and other drug traffickers laundered at least $881 million in illegal narcotics trafficking proceeds through HSBC Bank USA. These traffickers didn’t have to try very hard. They would sometimes deposit hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash in a single day into a single account, using boxes, as Loretta said, designed to fit the precise dimensions of the tellers’ windows in HSBC’s Mexico branches.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Matt, this is like Monopoly, the board game, all over again, you know? Get out of jail free, you know.

MATT TAIBBI: Yeah.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Instead of $50, you pay $1.9 billion, but you’re still getting out of jail free.

MATT TAIBBI: And this fits in the—in with the pattern of the entire financial crisis. $1.9 billion sounds like a lot of money, and it definitely is. It’s a record settlement. No bank has ever paid this much money before. But it’s about two months’ worth of profits for HSBC. It’s not going to cripple this bank. It’s not even going to hurt them that badly for this year. It fits in line with the Goldman Sachs settlement in the Abacas case, which was hailed at the time as a record settlement. It was $575 million. But that was about 1/20th of what they got just through the AIG bailout. So, this is not a lot of money for these people. It sounds like a lot of money to the layperson, but for the crimes they committed, getting away with just money—and it’s not even their own money, it’s not their personal money, it’s the shareholders’ money—it’s incredible. It really—it literally is a get-out-of-jail-free card.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, of course, the way that big banks these days can borrow money from the U.S. Fed for no interest—

MATT TAIBBI: For free.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: For free.

MATT TAIBBI: Free.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Basically, they can just take money from the government and pay the government back.

AMY GOODMAN: What does the Justice Department, what does the Obama administration, gain by not actually holding HSBC accountable?

MATT TAIBBI: You know, I think—I’ve asked myself that question numerous times. I really believe—and I think a lot of people believe this—that the Obama administration sincerely accepts the rationale that to aggressively prosecute crimes committed by this small group of too-big-to-fail banks would undermine confidence in the global financial system and that they therefore have to give them a pass on all sorts of things, because we are teetering on the edge of a problem, and if any one of them were to fall out, it would cause a domino effect of losses and catastrophes like the Lehman Brothers business. And I think they’re genuinely afraid of that. And so, that’s the only legitimate explanation that you can possibly assign to this situation, because, as we know, Wall Street abandoned the Obama administration this year when it came to funding in the election. They heavily supported Mitt Romney and didn’t give Obama much money at all.

AMY GOODMAN: We have to break, and when we come back, we’re going to ask you more about Libor and also your piece, “Jim DeMint,” who’s stepping down in the Senate, “The Fireman Ed of Politics,” you write. We’re talking to Matt Taibbi, contributing editor for Rolling Stone magazine. Then Peter Coyote joins us in studio to talk about the case of Leonard Peltier, in prison for 37 years. Stay with us.

 

Three days after the United Nations Climate Change Conference began here in Doha, a Qatari court sentenced a local poet to life in prison, a move that shocked many activists in the Gulf region and human rights observers. The sentencing of Mohammad ibn al-Dheeb al-Ajami came nearly two years after he wrote a poem titled “Tunisian Jasmine,” supporting the uprisings in the Arab world. “We are all Tunisia in the face of repressive elites!” al-Ajami wrote. “The Arab governments and who rules them are, without exception, thieves. Thieves!”

Qatari Human Rights Official Defends Life Sentence for Poet Who Praised Arab Spring Uprisings

Three days after the United Nations Climate Change Conference began here in Doha, a Qatari court sentenced a local poet to life in prison, a move that shocked many activists in the Gulf region and human rights observers. The sentencing of Mohammad ibn al-Dheeb al-Ajami came nearly two years after he wrote a poem titled “Tunisian Jasmine,” supporting the uprisings in the Arab world. “We are all Tunisia in the face of repressive elites!” al-Ajami wrote. “The Arab governments and who rules them are, without exception, thieves. Thieves!” We speak to his attorney and a member of Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee. [includes rush transcript]

GUESTS:

Najeeb al-Nuaimi, attorney for jailed Qatari poet.

Mohamed bin Saif al-Kuwari, member of Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee.

RUSH TRANSCRIPT

This transcript is available free of charge. However, donations help us provide closed captioning for the deaf and hard of hearing on our TV broadcast. Thank you for your generous contribution.DONATE >

Transcript

AMY GOODMAN: Local music at the Souq, or the marketplace, last night here in Doha, Qatar. This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman. We are broadcasting here live in Qatar, in the Persian Gulf. Three days after the United Nations Climate Change Conference began here in Doha, a Qatari court sentenced a local poet to life in prison, a move that shocked many activists in the Gulf region and human rights observers. The sentencing of Mohammad ibn al-Dheeb al-Ajami came nearly two years after he wrote a poem called “Tunisian Jasmine,” supporting the uprisings in the Arab world. In the poem, he called on Arabs to get rid of what he described as “imposed regimes.”

MOHAMMAD AL-AJAMI: [translated] Knowing that those that satisfy themselves and upset their people tomorrow will have someone else sitting in their seat, knowing that those that satisfy themselves and upset their people tomorrow will have someone else sitting in their seat, for those that think the country is in your and your kids’ names, the country is for the people, and its glories are theirs. Repeat with one voice, for one faith: We are all Tunisia in the face of repressive elites. We are all Tunisia in the face of repressive elites. The Arab governments and who rules them are, without exception, thieves. Thieves! The question that frames the thoughts of those who wonder will not find an answer in any official channels. As long as it imports everything it has from the West, why can’t it import laws and freedoms? Why can’t it import laws and freedoms?

AMY GOODMAN: Special thanks to Ali Issa for help with the translation.

Mohammad al-Ajami was first arrested for allegedly disparaging members of Qatar’s ruling family, including the emir, in another poem. Earlier this week, I spoke with Mohammad al-Ajami’s lawyer, Najeeb al-Nuaimi. Al-Nuaimi is former justice minister here in Qatar. His past clients include, well, the former Iraqi president, Saddam Hussein, and scores of prisoners held at Guantánamo. I interviewed Najeeb al-Nuaimi this week and began by talking about Mohammad al-Ajami’s arrest a year ago.

NAJEEB AL-NUAIMI: So, in November, they put a call for him: “Mohammad, you have to come to the police, to report to the police. You have, Mohammad, to come to the police and report.” And he kept saying, “Why should I report? For what?” Then he called the son of the emir—he is a friend of his son, by the way—and told him, “Why they are calling me in the police?” He said, “No, no, no. Just go there, and don’t worry. It’s just a routine register—I mean, some against you.”

He went there, but he felt there was something, you know, planned for him. And he was questioned by the police. “You said that poem?” He said, “Yeah, I said that poem.” “Where?” “I said it in my—and I’m replying to the other poem. So what is wrong with it?” He said, “You meant to say that, to encourage in the attempting of the coup?” He said, “No, I didn’t.” He denied it. And he said, “Ah, but you spoke a little bit that you were saying that the emir is not doing his job properly, according to the constitution.” He said, “No, who made this interpretation?” They said, “Well, we think it’s been interpreted that way.” So he said, “No, no, no, no, no. If I have insulted the emir on this, just continue, please, reading the poem. You will see in the end of it, I was really thanking the emir, not only disappointing him.” Then they said, “OK. Unfortunately, we have to arrest you.” That moment, with his cousins, friends, and he said, “I will need—please, call Dr. Najeeb al-Nuaimi. I need him to be my lawyer.”

Then I have received a phone in the evening, same night, telling me that there is somebody, Mohammad. “Do you know Mohammad?” I said, “No.” “Heard his poem?” I said, “Never. I don’t hear this kind—you know, I don’t have time, in fact. And it’s not my hobby much.” And I said, “No, no. What is wrong with him?” And he said he had been arrested because he said a poem. I thought, “How come?” We never had in the history of our judicial system, or even the Arab system, somebody will be arrested because he said a poem. How many poets in our Arab history attacked the ruler, attacked everybody? I mean, even in ancient Islamic time, there are—you know, everything about the kings, about the prince, nobody hanged them. They gave them money to shut their mouth. That’s the way. They give him money, then he shuts his mouth. But why him? They said, “I don’t know.” So I felt something unique in this case, something unbelievable, to have somebody to be arrested for a poem.

AMY GOODMAN: And so, tell us about this decision this past week in court, after Mohammad al-Ajami was in jail in solitary confinement for 11 months.

NAJEEB AL-NUAIMI: 29th of November, I attended. One word: Mohammad as-Ajami, sentence for life. I was shocked. “What? On what basis?” He had no time to defend himself. He had no time for me to defend him. He didn’t accept my written memorandum. So he just made it for himself. So it’s a kind of revenge. It became personal and a revenge against Mohammad. And anyhow, we appealed today, before the court, and the court sees—the first session will have an appeal on 30th of December.

AMY GOODMAN: Does the emir have the power to pardon Mohammad al-Ajami?

NAJEEB AL-NUAIMI: He has. He has.

AMY GOODMAN: Have you appealed to the emir?

NAJEEB AL-NUAIMI: I don’t appeal. I’m a lawyer. His family can appeal, but not me. He can appeal, but not me. I don’t appeal.

AMY GOODMAN: What message does this send to activists in the Gulf? I mean, that is what Mohammad has written about, the Arab Spring.

NAJEEB AL-NUAIMI: Really, it put Mohammad really as a leader of—leader of the poets or the all Arabs, and really supporting the revolution around the Arab world, with starting with Tunisia. And his poem was repeated in Egypt, repeated in Libya, repeated in the others. He puts in the lead.

AMY GOODMAN: The decision came down in the middle of a global conference—

NAJEEB AL-NUAIMI: Yes.

AMY GOODMAN: —here in Qatar, the U.N. climate change summit, where 10,000 people came.

NAJEEB AL-NUAIMI: Yeah, it’s a shame, a shame. It’s a shame. It’s a shame. It downgraded really the state. It downgraded the state on the eyes of the world, where we speak, where our emir spoke about—about the freedom of speech, the freedom that we have to take the freedom, by—even by fight. And we are sentencing somebody in our home for life. It’s contradictory.

AMY GOODMAN: Human Rights Watch wrote, “A draft media law approved by the State Cabinet in [June 2012] would prohibit publishing or broadcasting information that would [quote] ‘throw relations between the state and the Arab and friendly states into confusion’ or ‘abuse the regime or offend the ruling family or cause serious harm to the national or higher interests of the state.'” The emir has not yet ratified this draft law.

NAJEEB AL-NUAIMI: Article 53, the bad Article 53. I have really attacked it. I think it’s a shame to have an article like that while we really speak loud for the freedom of the other people. This sentence can put anybody—anyone—in the prison, and he has to pay a one-million-riyal penalty, for any reason. It’s very vague. If—I have said, in my Twitter, I said, the first man who will be arrested is Faisal al-Qassem, who make, you know, what called “Crossfire,” something like Crossfireon Al Jazeera, where he have two guys, and he starts telling him, “You know, your government is saying this and saying that, and your government is saying…” So, if these governments are a friend of Qatar, then he will be in prison. If they will apply it, the first people who will go to prison are Al Jazeera team, Al Jazeera editors.

AMY GOODMAN: That was Najeeb al-Nuaimi, attorney for Mohammad al-Ajami, the Qatari poet sentenced last week to life in prison. On Thursday, we traveled to Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee, and I met with a committee member who was, well, chosen by the emir, Mohamed bin Saif al-Kuwari, to talk about the sentencing of Mohammad al-Ajami.

AMY GOODMAN: Do you think that he should be in prison for the rest of his life?

MOHAMED BIN SAIF AL-KUWARI: I mean, in human rights, I can’t—I cannot see should have not, because this is in the court. I mean, this is his case in the court, his case and the judge. I can’t answer this and quickly without to see the file, without to see the cases in details—well, I mean, in deep details. I cannot answer this is OK this is in prison or not. But for human rights in Qatar, always to see this is—this people or this persons will get his rights fully—total rights for him, even in the prisons or in the courts, about the procedure. This is very important with us, is the procedure is according to the international conventions, international laws, also something in human rights.

AMY GOODMAN: What specifically was in the poem that violated the law here in Qatar?

MOHAMED BIN SAIF AL-KUWARI: About the human rights, just will talk the people, you can’t do it everythings. You can’t talk everythings. But according to the law, you cannot attack the symbols or—and the states without anythings. You have to write about some things for you to talk about anythings, but with some studying or report with you.

AMY GOODMAN: So, if someone read Mohammad’s poem today in Qatar out loud, they too would be sentenced to life in prison?

MOHAMED BIN SAIF AL-KUWARI: Yes. Now this is according to the judgments last month.

AMY GOODMAN: Has the media covered the case of the poet? Has Al Jazeera broadcast about the story of the poet being imprisoned for life here in Qatar?

MOHAMED BIN SAIF AL-KUWARI: I didn’t see on the Al Jazeera. But I saw on the BBC only. But Al Jazeera and the newspaper in Qatar, I didn’t see any articles to talk about Mohammad ibn al-Dheeb, the judgments about that, yeah. I don’t know why, but maybe for—for next times, maybe will do it. But I don’t know. I haven’t any explanation for that.

AMY GOODMAN: What does that say about freedom of the press here?

MOHAMED BIN SAIF AL-KUWARI: Yeah, it is a freedom. Yes, it is for media. You are talking about the media. Yes, the media. This is a freedom of opinion, expressions.

AMY GOODMAN: But it’s interesting that you say BBC covered it, but Al Jazeera did not cover it.

MOHAMED BIN SAIF AL-KUWARI: As yet. Maybe future, maybe, because they—they ask Dr. Ali when we are preparing now.

AMY GOODMAN: Yes, that is Qatar’s National Human Rights Committee member, Mohamed bin Saif al-Kuwari, talking about the sentencing of the poet, Mohammad al-Ajami here in Qatar to life in prison for his poem around the Arab Spring. We will bring you Monday the results of the U.N. climate change summit from Oslo, Norway, when the Nobel Peace Prize is announced. We’ll be broadcasting from there. I’ll be speaking at Norway, Oslo’s Literature House.

Thousands Protest Michigan’s Anti-Union Law, But Deep Pockets of Right-Wing Backers Prevail

Michigan Republican Governor Rick Snyder has signed into law two highly controversial anti-union bills, officially making the historic union stronghold the 24th so-called “right-to-work” state in the country. On Tuesday, thousands of demonstrators flooded the state capitol in Lansing to denounce the bill as an organized attack against labor that will lower wages and diminish collective bargaining rights. We’re joined by two people who attended the demonstrations: Katie Oppenheim, a registered nurse and President of the University of Michigan Professional Nurse Council; Andy Potter, state vice president of the Michigan Corrections Organization and the chair of SEIU’s National Republican Member Advisory Committee. We also speak with Lee Fang, a reporting fellow with The Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute, about how the bills were pushed through by powerful corporate interests and secretive billionaires. Michigan lawmakers are also using the lame-duck session to significantly restrict women’s reproductive rights with three bills that would ban abortion coverage in many insurance plans, and another bill that would allow employers and medical professionals to refuse to cover or provide health treatment on moral grounds. [Transcript to come. Check back soon.]

GUESTS:

Lee Fang, reporting fellow with The Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute. He covers money in politics, conservative movements and lobbying. Fong recently wrote an article called “Pro-‘Right to Work’ Groups In Michigan Outspend Union Counterparts.”

Katie Oppenheim, a registered nurse and President of the University of Michigan Professional Nurse Council, a local chapter of the Michigan Nurses Association.

Andy Potter, a corrections officer, state vice president of the Michigan Corrections Organization and the chair of SEIU’s National Republican Member Advisory Committee.

http://www.democracynow.org/2012/12/12/thousands_protest_michigans_anti_union_law

The banking giant HSBC has agreed to pay a reported $1.9 billion fine to avoid money-laundering charges in the United States. A Senate report earlier this year found Mexican drug cartels and firms allegedly linked to terrorism obtain financial services from HSBC, which it said provided a “gateway for terrorists to gain access to U.S. dollars and the U.S. financial system.” Among other allegations, the bank reportedly supplied a billion dollars to a firm whose founder had ties to al-Qaeda and shipped billions in cash from Mexico to the United States despite warnings the money was coming from drug cartels.

HSBC to Pay $1.9B in Money-Laundering Case

The banking giant HSBC has agreed to pay a reported $1.9 billion fine to avoid money-laundering charges in the United States. A Senate report earlier this year found Mexican drug cartels and firms allegedly linked to terrorism obtain financial services from HSBC, which it said provided a “gateway for terrorists to gain access to U.S. dollars and the U.S. financial system.” Among other allegations, the bank reportedly supplied a billion dollars to a firm whose founder had ties to al-Qaeda and shipped billions in cash from Mexico to the United States despite warnings the money was coming from drug cartels. Because of HSBC’s status as one of the world’s largest banks, state and federal officials reportedly agreed to seek the fine over concerns that criminal charges would have hurt the global financial system. The New York Times reports the HSBC settlement reinforces questions over whether “certain financial institutions, having grown so large and so interconnected, are too big to indict.” The HSBC settlement is expected to be formally unveiled today.

http://www.democracynow.org/2012/12/11/headlines#12110