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Komplexitäten haben ohnehin kaum Platz in Amerikas politischer Debatte, was Trump schon lange erkannt hat.

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Democrats vow to press on

Today’s New York Times.

I was traveling from Yalta to Volgograd last July when America’s newspaper of record produced the cartoon below. It was difficult not to see Aleksandr Dugin’s writings on American decadence in a new light.

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June 1971

Die RAF-Schrift Die Lücken der revolutionären Theorie schließen — Die Rote Armee aufbauen erscheint.

15. Juli Die 20jährige Petra Schelm wird von einem Polizisten erschossen.

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Ich weiß auch keine Antwort.

Wie sollten die jungen Deutschen reagieren, die man aufgefordert hatte, Verantwortung zu tragen in der Bemühung um die Rechte aller, als sie erfuhren, daß von Deutschland aus die amerikanischen Bomber starteten, die ihr schändliches Unwesen in Vietnam trieben? Warum konnten die deutschen Demokraten und die ganze Welt laut die Frage stellen: Was haben die Amerikaner in Vietnam verloren? Was sollten die jungen konsequenten Deutschen tun, um Zivil­courage zu zeigen, als Resultat von Auschwitz? Sie hatten nur folgende Möglichkeiten: in Bonn zu protestieren und vor der Bannmeile halt zu machen, wissend, daß der Bundestag das Problem unter den Tisch gekehrt hatte; oder in der Kirche zu beten oder Flugblätter zu verteilen oder alle vier Jahre einen Politiker zu wählen, der auch wieder schweigen würde. Sollten sie Nein zur Gewalt sagen, aber schweigend akzeptieren, daß ein amerikanischer Bomber in Vietnam eine Schule mit 163 Kindern bombardierte?

Ich weiß auch keine Antwort. Margrit Schiller wußte eine, aber sie hat verloren und alle, die wir nichts getan haben, außer vielleicht eine Petition zu unterschreiben oder drei Tage einen Hungerstreik durch­zuführen, sagen zu ihr: Du hast dich geirrt.

—Osvaldo Bayer, Nachbetrachtung, Margrit Schiller, »Es war ein harter Kampf um meine Erinnerung«, (Hamburg: Konkret Literatur Verlag, 2000), 222-223.

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Right-thinking, and fear


New Zealand’s chief censor has banned a document shared by the man allegedly responsible for killing 50 people in two Christchurch mosques.

Meanwhile, more than 1,000 people so far have opted to hand in their weapons following a ban on assault rifles and military-style semi-automatics (MSSAs).

David Shanks, the chief censor, officially classed the so-called manifesto as “objectionable” and told anyone in possession of it to destroy it.

“There is an important distinction to be made between ‘hate speech,’ which may be rejected by many right-thinking people, but which is legal to express, and this type of publication, which is deliberately constructed to inspire further murder and terrorism,” Shanks said in making his decision.…

Shanks told members of the public to delete any copies of the document, along with posts or links to it.…

Ardern on Monday announced a ban on firearms that extends to related parts used to convert guns into MSSAs, and all high-capacity magazines.

There are several threads here, the most noticeable being a government calling for a document’s eradication. bell¿ngcat had a link to The Great Replacement via a Twitter post, but as of this morning the link is gone, displaying only a .jpg of the tweet instead. In the past days much of the media coverage of the New Zealand mosque shootings which I’ve seen has involved criticism of web services for not rigorously censoring Brenton Tarrant’s video. There’s been absolutely no case made as to the effect of watching the video. The video, and now the document, are simply disappeared from the world on the say-so of the New Zealand government. Possession of a document, or even providing a link pointing people to the location of the document in someone else’s possession, is to the state thought-crime — not “right-thinking”. No sort of considered process seems to have taken place, simply rule by diktat.

The Guardian’s article weaves paragraphs about the censorship of the Great Replacement document in with paragraphs about New Zealand banning semi-automatic rifles. The message is clearly communicated that in possessing this document one is in possession of an item as dangerous as a rifle. Brenton Tarrant (he who shall not be named?) wrote a rambling tract that’s largely whitespace. The Great Replacement isn’t so much a polemic as a collection of half-sheet leaflets. It’s difficult to see what is thought to be dangerous here.

What is communicated to me is that New Zealand is reacting to the mosque shootings with fear, the state is immediately responding by calling for the removal of citizen freedoms, like the freedom to speak and to hear what others have said, and this state response is being met with acquiescence on the part of media corporations and the general public. This is not a robust state of democracy.

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Köpenick Kapp Putsch Memorial

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My candidate for US President 2020

It’s simply not enough to go back to “the pre-Trump normal.” Because the pre-Trump normal meant drone strikes, forever, massacres, and mass surveillance. Pre-Trump gave us Trump. The way to escape the hell of Trump is by finding something better, not just returning to the old.

This is the man who read the Pentagon Papers into the Congressional Record. Gravel’s video on Twitter:

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Fluid Reality


President Donald Trump has overturned decades of US policy by saying it is time to recognise Israel’s sovereignty over the occupied Golan Heights, which it captured from Syria in 1967.…

Israel annexed the Golan in 1981 in a move not recognised internationally.…

Richard Haass, a former senior US state department official who is now president of the Council on Foreign Relations think-tank, said he “strongly disagreed” with Mr Trump. He said such recognising Israeli sovereignty would violate a UN Security Council resolution, “which rules out acquiring territory by war”.…

But the formal US recognition doesn’t change anything on the ground: Israel was already acting with full military authority.

So critics have concluded this was a blatant attempt to give Mr Netanyahu a boost in a hotly-contested election.

If so, it’s one that violates important principles of international law, they say: Mr Trump has endorsed the seizure of territory, and will have no moral authority to criticise Russia for doing so in Ukraine’s Crimea.

For the BBC it’s “Ukraine’s Crimea”, but “the occupied Golan Heights” — not “Syria’s Golan Heights”. One grumbling murmur of dissent is heard in the voice of a former senior state department official. There is nothing to see here, nothing is changed on the ground. While critics may claim “important principles of international law” have been violated, the BBC isn’t about to say that. The BBC’s hard-hitting analyst asks only “Was Trump’s tweet a surprise for his aides?”

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“I can’t understand why the President would, once again, disparage a man as exemplary as my friend John McCain: heroic, courageous, patriotic, honorable, self-effacing, self-sacrificing, empathetic, and driven by duty to family, country, and God,” the Utah senator Mitt Romney wrote on Twitter.

McCain continued to speak out against Trump until his death, delivering a speech in which he decried “half-baked, spurious nationalism” in a thinly veiled reference to the president.

Trump was not invited to McCain’s funeral last year, which featured speeches by former presidents, including George W Bush and Barack Obama. Trump was not mentioned by name, but a stark contrast was drawn to his brand of politics.

What does it mean to be a hero in 21st Century America? What does it mean to be a courageous politician? To Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez “John McCain’s legacy represents an unparalleled example of human decency and American service.” Liberal media like The Guardian here without irony present George W Bush to argue John McCain’s nobility in counterpoint to Donald Trump.

Once the moorings have been lost, how are they to be regained?

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