Angry Rebellions against World Cup

“Social unrest mars 2014 World Cup”

The Mercury, 23 May 2014

The city of São Paulo has been at the centre of repeated protests against the government’s R114bn spending, writes Lizzie Dearden

viral world cup

Paulo Ito, a street artist, painted the mural of a starving child with only a football to eat on a school in São Paulo on May 10 and a photo of the artwork has since been shared more than 50 000 times on Facebook alone.

The city has been at the centre of repeated and sometimes violent protests against the government’s R114 billion spending on the World Cup when the money is so badly needed elsewhere.

“People already have the feeling and that image condensed this feeling,” Paulo Ito told slate.com.

“The truth is there is so much wrong in Brazil that it is difficult to know where to start,” he said.

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Arundhati Roy speaks out against Indian rape culture

Channel 4 News, Friday 21 December 2012
The writer Arundhati Roy tells Channel 4 News she believes rape is used as a weapon in India and that women in the country are “paying the price”.

Competing Imperialist Media and Culture Wars in the Scramble for Africa between US vs China

[The New York Times, a leading voice for US hegemony in the world imperialist system, takes a critical look at the growing imperialist challenge of China, and assesses the influence of Chinese government news agencies in Africa. The article also mentions the Chinese news agencies expansion in the US, as well as the growth of the RT, the Russian government news agency.  Such inter-imperialist info-wars play a major role in setting the terms for challenging old alignments with new power relations, investments, and resource acquisition (energy, minerals). — Frontlines ed.]

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New York Times:  “Pursuing Soft Power, China Puts Stamp on Africa’s News”

[Photo: Sven Torfinn for The New York Times: CCTV’s set in Nairobi, Kenya. China’s state news agency, Xinhua, also gives away dispatches to struggling news outlets in Africa.]
By New York Times,  August 16, 2012

NAIROBI, Kenya — China’s investment prowess and construction know-how is widely on display in this long-congested African capital. A $200 million ring road is being built and partly financed by Beijing. The international airport is undergoing a $208 million expansion supported by the Chinese, whose loans also paid for a working-class housing complex that residents have nicknamed the Great Wall apartments.

But Beijing’s efforts to win Kenyan affections involve much more than bricks and concrete. The country’s most popular English-language newspapers are flecked with articles by the Chinese state news agency, Xinhua. Television viewers can get their international news from either CCTV, the Chinese broadcasting behemoth, or CNC World, Xinhua’s English-language start-up. On the radio, just a few notches over from Voice of America and the BBC, China Radio International offers Mandarin instruction along with upbeat accounts of Chinese-African cooperation and the global perambulations of Chinese leaders.

“You would have to be blind not to notice the Chinese media’s arrival in Kenya,” said Eric Shimoli, a top editor at Kenya’s most widely read newspaper, The Daily Nation, which entered into a partnership with Xinhua last year. “It’s a full-on charm offensive.” Continue reading

Youth, Media, and the Art of Protest in North Africa

Transculturelles des Abattoirs, Casablanca

Jun 27 2011

by Loubna Hanna Skalli, http://www.jadalliya.com

“Everyone has his own way of fighting, and my weapon is art!” says Milad Faraway, a 20 year-old Libyan who created the rap group Music Masters with another young friend in 2010. Their song “Youth of the Revolution” urges “Moammar [to] get out” and end the violation of Libyans’ rights. “Qadhafi, open your eyes wide” sings another rap group Revolution Beat: “you will see that the Libyan people just broke through the fear barrier.” In neighboring Tunisia, twenty-one year old Hamada Ben Amor, known as El General, circulated on the internet his video song “President: Your people are dying” in an open address to Ben Ali during his last days as a dictator. For singing about peace, justice and freedom, Hamada faced jail time even after Mohammed Bouazizi, the young Tunisian street vendor, sacrificed his life for making the same demands. In Algeria, Rabah Ourrad one of the country’s lead rappers, built his popularity on “breaking silence” around the leaders’ corruption, greed and nepotism. Years prior to the recent revolutions that swept through North Africa and the Middle East, Moroccan youth political dissent transpired through the vibrant cultural movement known as the Nayda, or the Moroccan Movida as others call it. Rappers like H-Kayne, Zanka Flow, Hoba Hoba Spirit, and Bigg, are among many who captured the attention of the young generation in ways no political party or ideological current could. Continue reading

“Rage Against the Machine” Protest Racist Arizona Law

It Happened Last Night

By Charlie Amter on July 24, 2010

About halfway through Rage Against the Machine’s sold-out benefit show to support organizations fighting to overturn Arizona’s controversial SB-1070 immigration law, singer Zack De La Rocha’s lyrics took on new meaning. “What better time than here,” he purred as the band ripped through “Guerilla Radio,” one of their best-known songs, “What better time than now.”

And so it was Friday at the Palladium in the heart of Hollywood for the L.A. band, who hadn’t played their hometown in ten years. What better time than now, indeed.

“Guerilla Radio” may have been the anti-corporate media anthem earlier this decade, but the song, and nearly every track they performed from their formidable back catalog Friday night, took on new meaning in light of the political realities that charged the room and lit a fire underneath the band. Continue reading