Headlines: 31st July 2015

Girl-Child-In-Wheelchair-Sad-Hopeful-Handicapped‘The so-called “death with dignity” movement faces mounting challenges from a growing segment of society that sees it as a slippery slope towards “voluntary euthanasia.” Patients who perceive that their quality of life is irrevocable might opt to end their lives prematurely, for instance, or physicians might encourage them to do so out of fear of chronic pain or disability, even if such outcomes never actually materialize.

The problem with ill patients choosing to end their own lives is that nobody can predict the future, not even doctors who give terminal diagnoses that may or may not come to pass. Such is the case of Chastity Phillips, who in 2002 was told that she had a 50 percent chance of surviving surgery for chondrosarcoma, a malignant bone cancer. At the time, Phillips’ doctors told her that she only had six months to live, but 13 years have since passed and she’s still alive and thriving.’

Read more: Handicapped people concerned that legalization of physician-assisted suicide would eventually target them for ‘voluntary euthanasia’



‘Suburbanization and industrial deforestation are decimating the world’s trees, and there are only 2 intact giant forests remaining on planet earth. However, across the globe, some other phenomenon is causing standing trees to wither and die in record numbers, and at present, the problem is receiving considerable mention in California, where millions of trees are dying during the worst drought the region has seen in perhaps some 1200 years.’

Read more: Massive Global Tree Die-Off Linked to Geoengineering


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‘A joint investigation by Amnesty International and Forensic Architecture found “strong evidence” that the Israeli army carried out war crimes in an attempt to kill an Israeli soldier captured in Gaza last summer and as revenge for his capture.

On 1 August 2014 — a day Palestinians have come to know as Black Friday — the Israeli army initiated its deadliest act of butchery during its 51-day war on Gaza, bombing men, women and children in an effort to kill one of its own soldiers in Rafah, Gaza’s southernmost city.

When the dust settled, anywhere between 135 to more than 200 Palestinian civilians were dead, including 75 children. With the morgues full to capacity, medical workers were forced to store the corpses of small children in vegetable refrigerators and ice cream coolers to accommodate the high volume of dead bodies, producing some of the most haunting images produced by the 51-day offensive.’

Read more: Israel Intentionally Killed Civilians After Soldier’s Capture in Gaza — Amnesty



‘What is it about these figures? Death becomes them, and obituaries are fairly useless, less they suggest finality. The point about such fantasy producing tropes such as the “war on terror” is that they cannot allow their subjects, their targets, to ever truly die. If it is not the multi-death simulacrum that is Osama bin Laden, then it seems to be the Taliban spiritual leader, Mullah Muhammad Omar, the man of many lives and many changes. His survival record, suggested David A. Graham, “would be the envy of any alley cat.”’

Read more: Multi-Deaths Again, Al Qaeda Leaders ‘Have Nine Lives’. ‘Taliban Leader Mullah Omar, the Man of Many Lives and Many Changes’


get-attachment (502)‘We are about to enter August. And that’s a special month in India. Each year, on the 15th, the country commemorates the anniversary of independence from Britain.

To mark the occasion, official public celebrations take place in Delhi with flag waving and fly-pasts, and the corporate media is awash with patriotic sentiments.

Behind the scenes, however, agriculture, the very heart and soul of the nation, will continue to be restructured for the benefit of foreign interests, raising the question:

just where does the notion independence sit with such a policy?’

Read more: Monsanto’s Looting of India’s Agriculture: Political Backing of GMO. Hypnotic Trance in Delhi





‘The Israeli Knesset has passed a law that allows the force-feeding of prisoners who have gone on hunger strike against their detention.

The Israeli parliament approved the law on Thursday, with 46 of the 120 lawmakers voting in favor and 40 against it.

Under the legislation, a judge will be allowed to sanction the force-feeding of hunger striking prisoners.

Meanwhile, the Israeli opposition party, Joint List, condemned the passage of the “hunger strike law,” saying it violated the rights of Palestinians, who have increasingly been participating in hunger strikes.’

Read more: Israel passes law to OK prisoner force-feeding



‘Royal Dutch Shell has joined a growing list of Western energy giants in announcing broad cuts to jobs and investments amid expectations of a “deep downturn”.

The Anglo-Dutch company said Thursday it will eliminate 6,500 staff and contractor positions this year and reduce investment by $7 billion or 20%.

Shell joins the ranks of the world’s biggest oil producers such as BP and ConocoPhillips in announcing layoffs. US energy giant Chevron said this week it was showing the door to 1,500 workers to save $1 billion like Conoco.’

Read more: Western oil giants on job cutting spree



‘A high-ranking Russian official says Moscow is working to upgrade the S-300 surface-to-air missile defense system it plans to deliver to Iran.

Vladimir Kozhin, President Vladimir Putin’s aide on military and technical cooperation, said on Thursday that the Russian-built S-300 air defense system is to be modernized before being delivered to Iran, given the fact the original contract was struck a long time ago.

Last month, Yan Novikov, the chief executive of Russian state arms producer, Almaz-Antey, confirmed the removal of all restrictions on S-300 deliveries to Tehran.’

Read more: Russia to deliver updated S-300 missile system to Iran

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