Tuesday, June 15, 2010

  • Supreme Court: Torture and Rendition Victim Maher Arar Cannot Sue in US Courts

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    In a major setback for holding US officials accountable for rendition and torture, the Supreme Court has rejected Arar’s lawsuit against the US government. Arar was seized at New York’s Kennedy Airport in 2002 on a stopover from a vacation abroad. Instead of allowing him to return home to Canada, Arar was sent to his native Syria, where he was tortured and interrogated in a tiny underground cell for nearly a year. Just after the Court’s decision was announced, Arar revealed a major new development: Canada’s federal law enforcement agency, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, is conducting a criminal investigation into US and Syrian officials for their role in Arar’s rendition and torture. We speak to Maher Arar. [includes rush transcript]

  • "I Love the US Republic, and I Hate the US Empire": Johan Galtung on the War in Afghanistan and How to Get Out

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    We turn now to the second part of my interview with Johan Galtung. Known as a founder of the field of peace and conflict studies, he’s spent the past half-century pursuing nonviolent conflict resolution in international relations. His latest book is The Fall of the US Empire – And Then What?: Successors, Regionalization or Globalization? US Fascism or US Blossoming? I spoke to him last week about his prediction of the collapse of US empire in ten years, by 2020. In this second part of our interview, Galtung discusses his assessment of President Obama, the US corporate media and more. But we began with the war in Afghanistan, where he has worked extensively in attempts at conflict resolution. [includes rush transcript]