Top 25 Censored Stories of 2007-8


This video from the USA in 2007 is called One million killed in Iraq?

From British daily The Morning Star:

Stories they want to suppress

(Sunday 25 January 2009)

Censored 2009. Edited by Peter Philips and Andrew Roth
(Seven Stories Press, £11.99)

THE subtitle of this US book is The Top 25 Censored Stories of 2007-8, but these 25 stories in fact only occupy around one-quarter of this 400-plus page compendium.

Also included are updates on previous stories, a fairly tokenistic section of “good news” and, most interestingly, several in-depth studies into key aspects of current US domestic and foreign policy.

The stories are well chosen and together comprise an ominous overview of the ratcheting up of repression, extortion and war by the US state and its corporate and global allies over the past year.

The top under-reported story is the death toll in Iraq.

Research by The Lancet suggests that US troops killed an average of 300 Iraqis per day throughout 2006 and conservative estimates posit at least one million additional deaths as a result of the invasion and occupation.

Opinion polls in the US, however, show that the average respondent estimates the figure to be around 10,000 – 1 per cent of the actual total – a graphic demonstration of the success of the media’s self-imposed censorship.

The establishment of a new US-funded “police training centre” in El Salvador along the lines of the infamous School of the Americas is also covered, along with increasing NATO belligerence over its first-strike nuclear policy and the American Psychological Association’s co-operation with torture at Guantanamo.

Corporate fraud and extortion are exposed too, with stories covering the theft of Latin American water resources, the plunder of billions from the No Child Left Behind budget in the US and of tens of billions from the Iraq “reconstruction fund.”

Even more depraved is the widespread use of slaves – an estimated 27 million, the highest number in human history – to prop up the global economy as well as increased violence and repression against trade union activists.

These stories provide a clear demonstration of the degeneracy, brazenness and sheer desperation of a capitalist class failing to find solutions to its own contradictions.

But the book itself contains no such analysis.

Few links are made between different stories and there is no real attempt to explain their causes or significance. As a result, the defeats suffered by imperialism of late are somewhat glossed over.

Nevertheless, what the book sets out to do – chronicle some of the most important under-reported events of the past year – it does well, with updates from researchers specialising in each field and full details of sources used for those who want to investigate further. A useful reference book for activists.

DAN GLAZEBROOK

USA: Poll: Are Radio Stations Right to Censor the Eagles? Here.

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