Tag Archives | Europe

Exposed: ‘Full Range of Collusion’ Between Big Oil and TTIP Trade Reps

"The lines of demarcation in TTIP are between the mutually exclusive interests of transnational big business and people and the planet; if the deal passes, the former wins and the latter lose," writes Mark Dearn. (Photo: Global Justice Now/flickr/cc)

“The lines of demarcation in TTIP are between the mutually exclusive interests of transnational big business and people and the planet; if the deal passes, the former wins and the latter lose,” writes Mark Dearn. (Photo: Global Justice Now/flickr/cc)

This article originally appeared on Common Dreams.

Amid warnings that the proposed TransAtlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) could undermine global attempts to rein in runaway climate change, new documents reveal that EU trade officials gave U.S. oil giant ExxonMobil access to confidential negotiating strategies considered too sensitive to be released to the European public.

The documents, obtained by the Guardian, offer “an extraordinary glimpse into the full degree of collusion between the European commission and multinational corporations seeking to use TTIP to increase U.S. exports of fossil fuels,” said John Hilary, the director of the UK organization War on Want. “The commission is allowing the oil majors to write the proposed energy chapter of TTIP in their favor.”

According to the Guardian: “Officials also asked one oil refinery association for ‘concrete input’ on the text of an energy chapter for the negotiations, as part of the EU’s bid to write unfettered imports of U.S.… Read the rest

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Missing 24-year-old found alive and well 30 years after man confessed to her murder

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Well this is bizarre.

Louise Kelly via Independent:

A 24-year-old woman who went missing from her home in 1984, sparking a 31-year-long murder mystery, has been found alive and well.

Computer science student Petra Pazsitka vanished without a trace from her home in Germany three decades ago and was officially declared dead in 1989.

Her disappearance led to an extensive investigation, with nationwide appeals, searches and video reconstructions of her last known actions.

It is understood she left her student flat in Braunschweig and went to the shop and the dentist.

Friends claimed she then boarded a bus with the intention of going to visit her parents – but never arrived at their home.

A man who had previously been convicted for the rape and murder of a 14-year-old girl in the area confessed to Petra’s murder.

However, he later retracted his confession and Petra’s body was never found.

Continue reading.… Read the rest

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The Man Who Claims He Just Founded a New Country in Europe

TIME profiles Vit Jedlicka, founder of Liberland, Europe’s newest country (maybe):

A Czech man is claiming to be the president of a new country he founded in Europe.


Vit Jedlicka, a member of the conservative Party of Free Citizens in the Czech Republic, is the self-appointed president of Liberland, which he says sits on unclaimed terra nullius territory wedged between Serbia and Croatia. The 3 sq. mi. “country,” where taxes are optional and a military is nonexistent, does not “interfere with the territory” of the two states, according to Liberland’s website.

“The objective of the founders of the new state is to build a country where honest people can prosper without being oppressed by governments making their lives unpleasant through the burden of unnecessary restrictions and taxes,” reads a statement announcing the creation of the new country this week. The country’s motto is: “To live and let live.”

Jedlicka, speaking by phone from Prague, told TIME that the effort began as a political stunt to garner media attention.

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‘Gas the Jews!’: European Anti-Semitism During the Gaza Crisis

Isn’t this the kind of bullshit that fertilized Israel’s birth in the first place?

Protest against the Israeli attack on the Palestinians of Gaza held at the State Library 4 January 2009. Taken on January 4, 2009. Photo by Takver via Flickr.

Protest against the Israeli attack on the Palestinians of Gaza held at the State Library 4 January 2009. Taken on January 4, 2009. Photo by Takver via Flickr.


Zack Beauchamp writes at Vox:

Since the outbreak of fighting between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, there’s been a wave of street-level demonstrations rallying against the war. These protestors are generally highly critical of Israel and blame it for the current round of violence, but the vast majority want an end to the violence and are demanding it peacefully.

But the peaceful demonstrators are not alone in turning out to the streets over the Israel-Gaza conflict. A small-but-disturbing fraction of the international anger over the war has escalated into outright anti-Semitism: shouting “gas the Jews!” during protests in Germany, attacking synagogues in France, and beating a rabbi in Morocco.

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World War I Propaganda 100 Years On

100 years ago this month, hostilities broke out in the most hellish war the world had seen at the time.  Naively, we thought that this was the “War to End All Wars,” as though the memory of atrocity and suffering were the best safeguard against it!  Here is some World War I propaganda various nations used to incite people to participate in throwing away lives for no reason. What will the propaganda inciting people to participate in throwing away lives for no reason look like in our next war?

See more propaganda on a previous post here.

Head over to WW1 Propaganda.com for the entire collection.

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Down With Western ‘Democracy’!

GodBlessAmericaAndre Vltchek writes at CounterPunch:

A specter is haunting Europe and Western world — it is this time, the specter of fascism. It came quietly, without great fanfare and parades, without raised hands and loud shouts. But it came, or it returned, as it has always been present in this culture, one that has, for centuries, been enslaving our entire planet.

As was in Nazi Germany, resistance to the fascist empire is again given an unsavory name: terrorism. Partisans and patriots, resistance fighters – all of them were and have always been defined by fascist bigots as terrorists.

By the logic of Empire, to murder millions of men, women and children in all corners of the world abroad is considered legitimate and patriotic, but to defend one’s motherland was and is a sign of extremism.

German Nazis and Italian Fascists defined their rule as ‘democratic’, and so does this Empire.

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Some European Nations Installing Raw Milk Vending Machines

Pic: Lesyeuxpourvoir (CC)

Pic: Lesyeuxpourvoir (CC)

Don’t expect this in America any time soon. The feds aren’t very keen on raw milk, which they consider a health hazard. Me? I don’t drink milk at all. Lactose intolerant and all that. Miss ice cream, though.

Via EcoLiving:

Compared with pasteurized and homogenized dairy, the news source argues that raw milk offers a wealth of nutrition—all without the drawbacks of oxidized fats, denatured proteins, antibiotics or growth hormones typically found in pasteurized and processed milk products.

Given the purported benefits of raw milk, multiple European nations have installed self-service vending machines that provide 24-hour access. Michel Cantaloube, who helped introduce the machines in France, the UK and Spain, hopes to expand the venture into a similar vending machine for raw yogurt.

Other countries like Italy, Slovenia, Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands have begun to install their own raw milk vending machines as well.

However, the U.S.

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In Almost Every European Country, Bikes Are Outselling New Cars



Could it happen in the United States, at least in dense urban areas? NPR reports on the exploding bicycle sales in Europe:

We know that Europeans love their bicycles — think Amsterdam or Paris. Denmark even has highways specifically for cyclists.

Indeed, earlier this month, NPR’s Lauren Frayer reported that Spain, which has long had a love affair with cars, is embracing the bicycle: For the first time on record, Lauren noted, bicycles outsold cars in the country.

But it’s becoming a Continent-wide phenomenon. More bikes were sold in Italy than cars — for the first time since World War II.

This prompted us to look at the figures across the 27 member states of the European Union for both cars and bicycles. New-car registrations for Cyprus and Malta weren’t available, so we took them out of the comparison.

Here’s what we found: Bicycle sales outpaced new-car sales last year in every one of those countries, except Belgium and Luxembourg.

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European Parliament Planning Cyber Propaganda Blitz Against Skepticism Of The European Union

As the Telegraph reports, you never know whom you’re talking to online:

The Daily Telegraph has seen confidential spending proposals and internal documents planning an unprecedented propaganda blitz ahead of and during European elections in June 2014. The European Parliament is to spend almost £2 million on press monitoring and trawling [discussions] on the internet for “trolls” amid fears that hostility to the EU is growing.

Key to a new strategy will be “public opinion monitoring tools” to “identify at an early stage whether debates of political nature among followers in social media and blogs have the potential to attract media and citizens’ interest”.

A confidential document agreed last year said: “Parliament’s institutional communicators must monitor public conversation in real time, and have the capacity to react quickly, to join in and influence the conversation, for example, by providing facts and figures to deconstructing myths.” Training for parliament officials begins later this month.

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European City of Amsterdam Announces Plans to Concentrate ‘Scum’ Into Camps

“People (Germans) use to frighten their children, ‘If you do not behave, you will surely end up at Dachau.'”

 – Theodore Haas

As the European federalists continue trying ruthlessly to construct their would-be superstate, with unquestioning support from the “left wing” throughout the nation states involved, disturbing news emerges from Amsterdam. The Guardian reports:

the Dutch capital may lose its reputation for tolerance over plans to dispatch nuisance neighbours to “scum villages” made from shipping containers.

The mayor, Eberhard van der Laan, insists his controversial new £810,000 policy to tackle antisocial behaviour is to protect victims of abuse and homophobia from harassment.

The camps where antisocial tenants will be rehoused for three to six months have been called “scum villages” because the policy echoes proposals from Geert Wilders, the far-right populist, who last year demanded that “repeat offenders” be “sent to a village for scum”.

But Bartho Boer, a spokesman for the mayor, denies that the plans are illiberal.

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