Socio-economic Crisis & Survival

Rojava – the formation of an economic alternative: Private property in the service of all

March 30, 2015

By: Michael Knapp, Historian; Translated from German original by Richard Braude

Cross-posted from: Peace in Kurdistan Campaign

Originally released on: 6 February, 2015

 

 

The revolution in Rojava (West Kurdistan/ North Syria), which started in Kobanî (Ain al-Arab) and spread like wildfire through Afrîn, Dêrik (Al-Malikiya), Qamişlo (Al-Qamishli), Amûdê and Serê Kaniyê (Ras al-Ayn) – the regions lying on the Turkish-Syrian border – has launched an alternative development in all aspects of society.

Inspired by the model of democratic confederalism and democratic autonomy, democratic assemblies, women’s council and other democratic organisations have been established. Every ethnic and religious group must be represented in these councils, and the leadership of each evenly divided between the sexes. This is not a project striving towards a nation state, but for democratic autonomy in the region and a democratic Syria.

India's Barefoot College lights up the world

March 6, 2015

College helps to bring electricity to villages around the globe by training poor women to be solar engineers.

By: Shweta Desai

Cross-posted from: Al Jazeera

Originally released on January 15, 2014

Women solar engineers in each of 43 Least Developed Countries will receive training at the college by 2015 [Shweta Desai]

 

 

Living in a palm-lined thatched roof house surrounded by dense jungles and rows of corn and cassava in the Santa Teresa village, 42-year-old Florentine until now has spent all her evenings in the dark, literally.

But today, sitting in the dusty village of Tilonia in Rajasthan India, the Mayan woman is lighting the first sparks, which three months from now will bring electricity for the first time in her hometown in Toldeo in Latin America’s Belize.

Meet Yacouba Sawadogo – The Man Who Stopped the Desert

March 2, 2015

By: Sumitra

Cross-posted from OddityCentral

Originally released on January 20th, 2014

Photo: Andrea Borgarello/TerrAfrica

 

 

Yacouba Sawadogo is an exceptional man – he single-handedly managed to solve a crisis that even scientists and development organizations could not. The simple old farmer’s re-forestation and soil conservation techniques are so effective they’ve helped turn the tide in the fight against the desertification of the harsh lands in northern Burkina Faso.

Gratiferias: The Market Where Everything is Free

February 28, 2015

By: Julie Liardet

Cross-posted from WorldCrunch

Originally released on September 09, 2012

 

GENEVA - People strolling, music, smiles, bursts of laughter. Customers walk between clothes and trinkets, homegrown zucchini and children's games, spread on tables or on the ground. A neighbor has brought his electric razor; another has just found a book by French sociologist Marcel Mauss

 

It’s been five years since Haiti’s earthquake. And the ‘redevelopment’ hasn’t been about helping Haitians.

January 16, 2015

The rebuilding of Haiti is not working.

By Nixon Boumba

Cross-posted from Washington Post

Orignially released on January 12, 2015

Anti-government protesters in Port-au-Prince last month called for President Michel Martelly’s resignation. (HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)

Five years ago this month, a terrible earthquake struck my country. I was in the capital city, Port-au-Prince, when suddenly the earth shook and buildings around me and across the city collapsed—taking with them hundreds of thousands of lives and the hopes of my nation. The world stood with us that day and in the weeks and months that followed. Donations poured in; the United States and many other governments pledged to help us rebuild Haiti. But five years into the reconstruction, as a Haitian, I must ask: For whom are we rebuilding our country?

FIVE YEARS AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE IN HAITI, THE SAD STATE OF DEMOCRACY AND HUMAN RIGHTS

January 11, 2015

An Interview with Human Rights Organizer Jackson Doliscar

By Beverly Bell

Jackson Doliscar, community organizer and human rights defender.

Some things never change. In Haiti, no matter the century or decade in question, one can be certain that: the state and elite are trouncing the rights and needs of the majority, the population is protesting to demand land and justice, and the international community is taking the wrong side.

Five years after the earthquake that killed an estimated 200,000 to 300,000 (no one knows for sure) and rendered 1.9 million more people homeless, the fraudulently elected administration of Michel Martelly has abandoned any pretense of democracy. Having failed to hold elections three years in a row, instead letting national and local elective seats become vacant, the government now rules by decree. It is also attacking and killing human rights defenders. The elite, in combination with foreign corporations, are seizing land for agribusiness, mining, tourism, and free trade zones. The grassroots has taken to the streets to demand democratic government and an end to foreign occupation by the UN. Social movements are also mobilizing for defense of land, housing, and rights. The US has, until recent months, staunchly supported the government. It has backed this support with “security” funding, including more than $7 million for the police in 2015, for a nation not at war against anyone but its own people.

Jackson Doliscar is a community organizer and human rights defender. Since the earthquake, he has been the primary outreach worker in an international campaign for the right to housing for those left languishing under tents, through the Force for Reflection and Action on Housing (FRAKKA, by its Creole acronym). This is the first in a two-part series.

Another Black Boy Gunned Down by Police

December 17, 2014

By Beverly Bell

We will never learn of the names, lives, and deaths of countless Black men and boys murdered by police - and slavery enforcers, hate groups, vigilantes, and a host of others – dating back to the earliest days of this country’s history. The names and stories of a slew of recent victims of extrajudicial executions, such as Eric Garner and Michael Brown, and the exoneration of their killers, have become widely known through the blowback of public fury.

This is a tale of another Black boy whose name and wrongful death were never reported in any official document or national media. The policeman responsible was not charged, indicted, or prosecuted. This child’s prematurely snuffed life was not spent in the US but in the Black nation of Haiti, though the US government subsidized his murderer.

Garifuna communities in Trujillo and Puerto Castillo endure collective displacement, fisheries contamination, threats to fresh water

November 6, 2014

Part IV of Series from Journal of Agricultural Missions Delegation to Garifuna Territories in Honduras

Released on Agricultural Missions, Inc (AMI) November 5, 2014

 

Ag Missions’ Honduras Delegation Journal October 23-24, 2014

Part IV:  Garifuna communities in Trujillo and Puerto Castillo endure collective displacement, fisheries contamination, threats to fresh water.

The towns of Trujillo and Puerto Castillo are in the heart of Garifuna territories on the Northern Honduran coast. In May the People of Puerto Castillo protested blocking the road leading to the port, which provoked a violent police attack on their community.

Mayan Peoples Movement Defeats Monsanto Law in Guatemala

September 30, 2014

By Carol Schachet

Cross Posted from Grassroots International

Widespread protests and strategic organizing succeeded in defending Mayan lands and food sovereignty in Guatemala. This marks a major – and unprecedented – victory as the congress repealed the “Monsanto Law,” preventing threatened exclusivity on patented seeds to a handful of transnational companies.

Daniel Pascual, director of Grassroots International’s partner organization the Committee for Campesino Unity (CUC), said the widespread demonstrations against the "Monsanto law" showed that Mayan people consider it a flagrant violation of national sovereignty.  He added, “This is a victory for the movement, but do not forget there are other laws that we need to repeal that are designed to favor certain companies and control the movement resistance to defend the territory.”

The article below, originally posted on the Via Campesina website, describes the victory and ongoing efforts to protect seeds, land and food sovereignty in Guatemala.

U.S. Has No Plans for Leniency With Unaccompanied Migrant Children

June 24, 2014

Cross posted from Color Lines
By: Julianne Hing

Migrants fleeing Central America for the U.S. will not be greeted with open arms, the Obama administration wants to make clear. In fact, to deal with the influx of an expected 90,000 migrants this year, the Obama administration will be funneling immigration officers and judges to the region to accelerate processing—and deportations—of migrants, reports the New York Times.

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