John Pilger

In 2001, the London Observer published a series of reports claiming an “Iraqi connection” to al-Qaeda, even describing the base in Iraq where the training of terrorists took place and a facility where anthrax was being made as a weapon of mass destruction.
It is a decade since the people of East Timor defied the genocidal occupiers of their country to take part in a United Nations referendum, voting for their freedom and independence.
The hysteria over the release of the so-called Lockerbie bomber, Libyan Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, reveals much about the political and media class on both sides of the Atlantic, especially Britain.
I met Eddie Spearritt in the Philharmonic pub, overlooking Liverpool. It was a few years after 96 Liverpool football fans were crushed to death at Hillsborough Stadium, Sheffield, on April 15, 1989. Eddie’s 14-year-old son, Adam, died in his arms.
The theft of public money by members of parliament, including government ministers, has given Britons a rare glimpse inside the tent of power and privilege.
In the early 1960s, it was the Irish of Derry who would phone late at night, speaking in a single breath, spilling out stories of discrimination and injustice. Who listened to their truth until the violence began?
At my hotel in Phnom Penh, the women and children sat on one side of the room, palais-style, the men on the other. It was a disco night and a lot of fun; then suddenly people walked to the windows and wept.
“When the truth is replaced by silence”, the Soviet dissident Yevgeny Yevtushenko said, “the silence is a lie”.
With its banks secured in the warmth of the southern spring, Australia is not news internationally. It ought to be. An epic scandal of racism, injustice and brutality is being covered up in the manner of apartheid South Africa.
Try to laugh, please. The news is now officially parody and a game for all the family to play.
The British lawyer Gareth Peirce, celebrated for defending victims of miscarriages of justice, wrote recently in relation to the conflict in Northern Ireland.
“Zimbabwe shows Africa is still in the despots’ grip”, said the headline in the London Observer over an article by Keith Richburg.
Two weeks ago, I presented a young Palestinian, Mohammed Omer, with the 2008 Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism.
The voices of those who know how to help Burma are all but extinguished by a virus called the “war on terror”.
Beyond the sound and fury of its conquest of Iraq and campaign against Iran, the world’s dominant power is waging a largely unreported war on another continent — Latin America.
When the outside world thinks about Australia, it generally turns to venerable cliches of innocence — cricket, leaping marsupials, endless sunshine, no worries. Australian governments actively encourage this. Witness the recent “G’day USA” campaign, in which Kylie Minogue and Nicole Kidman sought to persuade people in the US that, unlike the empire’s problematic outposts, a gormless greeting awaited them Down Under. After all, George Bush had ordained the previous Australian prime minister, John Howard, “sheriff of Asia”.

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