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Friday, December 27, 2013

  • U.S. Rushes Weapons to Iraq Amidst Bloody Sectarian Conflict Set Off by 2003 Invasion

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    A series of attacks in Iraq over Christmas left at least 42 people dead and dozens more wounded. As Iraq faces its worst violence in years, the United States has rushed a new shipment of Hellfire missiles to help the Iraqi government fight militants. The CIA is also helping Iraqi forces target militant camps with aerial strikes. According to the United Nations, more than 8,000 Iraqis have been killed this year in the worst violence since 2008. We discuss the continued crisis in Iraq and how the Syrian conflict is affecting the entire region, with two guests: Raed Jarrar, an Iraqi-American blogger and political analyst, and William Dunlop, a Baghdad-based correspondent for Agence France-Presse.

  • The Other 98% Urges Wall Street to Donate $91 Billion in Bonuses to Victims of Financial Crisis

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    The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 both hit record highs on Thursday while the NASDAQ surged to its highest level in over 13 years. The year-end rally is expected to add a boost to the massive bonuses Wall Street is preparing to hand out this year. The largest Wall Street firms have reportedly set aside more than $91 billion for year-end bonuses. In response, an activist group called The Other 98% has launched a petition calling on employees of Chase, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America to donate their bonuses to the 10 million Americans made homeless by the housing crisis. We are joined by Alexis Goldstein, a former computer programmer at Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank who later got involved with Occupy Wall Street and is now communications director at the group, The Other 98%.

  • How Can the Philippines Recover from Typhoon Haiyan While Forced to Pay Off Ex-Dictator’s Old Debt?

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    While the Philippines struggles to rebuild after Typhoon Haiyan, the country is being forced to continue paying out billions of dollars in debt to the World Bank and other lenders. Haiyan, the strongest typhoon to ever hit land, affected more than 14 million people in 44 provinces in the central Philippines, killing 6,000, displacing more than four million, leaving nearly 1,800 missing, and damaging about one million homes. On Christmas Eve, the Philippines reached a grim milestone: $1 billion in debt payments since the typhoon hit. Some of those debts are from the corrupt and abusive regime of Ferdinand Marcos, which enjoyed the early backing of the Ronald Reagan administration. During their 20 years in power, the Marcoses embezzled $5 to $10 billion from their people, a debt Filipinos continue to carry today. To explain the debt and how the country is coping after the storm, we are joined by Eric LeCompte, executive director of Jubilee USA Network.