2021-02-22: News Headlines

Howard Lisnoff (2021-02-22). One Flew Over the US. counterpunch.org On the best route (also the route that the Metro North Railroad follows) to New York City from western Massachusetts, stands the remnants of a long-abandoned state psychiatric facility (Harlem Valley State Hospital) in upstate New York. The many buildings that housed mentally ill people, like others in many states, have the appearance of brick military-style

Staff (2021-02-22). This Is What Deregulation Looks Like: Some Texans Face $10K+ in Electric Bills, Others Still in Dark. democracynow.org When millions of Texans lost power during extreme winter weather, some who were fortunate enough to keep the lights on now face astronomically high energy bills, with people being charged thousands of dollars for just a few days of energy use. The skyrocketing bills are a result of the state's years-long push to deregulate its energy market, says Tyson Slocum, director of Public Citizen's Energy Program. "We are seeing in these deregulated environments unscrupulous companies preying on their assumption that households will not understand or read the fine print," says Slocum. We also speak with Texas resident Akil…

Staff (2021-02-22). No Heat or Water, Overflowing Toilets, Disgusting Food: Texas Prisons Went "from Bad to Dire" in Storm. democracynow.org As winter storms overwhelmed Texas, many incarcerated people in the state went days without heat and water, making already grim conditions behind bars even more intolerable for thousands of people. Officials say 33 prisons across the state lost power and 20 had water shortages after the state's electrical grid failed. Staff shortages compounded the problems, and some incarcerated people report not being provided with blankets to keep warm in their freezing cells and being served inedible food. "Texas prison conditions have gone from bad to dire," says Marshall Project reporter Keri Blakinger. "Prisons didn't real…

Staff (2021-02-22). Fossil Fuel Shock Doctrine: Naomi Klein on Deadly Deregulation & Why Texas Needs the Green New Deal. democracynow.org Millions of Texans are still suffering after severe winter weather devastated the state's energy and water systems. About 8 million Texans remain under orders to boil water, and 30,000 homes still have no power. Around 70 deaths have now been linked to the winter storms, including at least 12 people who died inside their homes after losing heat. Republican lawmakers in Texas are facing increasing criticism for their handling of the crisis, their decades-long push to deregulate the state's energy system, and their unfounded attacks on renewable energy and the Green New Deal. Naomi Klein, senior correspondent at Th…

MEE staff (2021-02-22). Covid-19: Former Israeli minister urges denial of vaccine to Palestinians in Gaza. middleeasteye.net Covid-19: Former Israeli minister urges denial of vaccine to Palestinians in Gaza | Ayelet Shaked argued humanitarian aid to Palestinians in the besieged territory should be blocked over bodies of two Israeli soldiers held by Hamas | Mon, 02/22/2021 – 14: 57 | A Palestinian health worker holds swab samples collected to test for Covid-19 in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip on 16 February 2021 (AFP) | Former Isr…

Margaret Flowers (2021-02-22). Global Solidarity Is Needed During The Pandemic To End Medical Apartheid. dissidentvoice.org Some of the truths the COVID-19 pandemic is exposing about the United States are its racial disparities in health and access to health care. Black and Indigenous people are more likely to be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 than white people. They are two to three times more likely to be hospitalized and …

_____ (2021-02-22). A Conversation With Leaders Of The Mayangna Nation. popularresistance.org In November of 2020, between hurricanes Eta and Iota, Stephen Sefton interviewed Indigenous leaders and others in Nicaragua's North Caribbean Coast Autonomous Region. The interviews mainly address long standing misapprehensions and outright falsehoods about Nicaragua's Sandinista government's defense of Indigenous people's rights, an issue inseparable from defense of the natural environment. More immediately, the interviews exposed several poorly researched, inaccurate reports of the Oakland Institute, published in 2020, clearly seeking to damage Nicaragua's economy by means of misleading, sensationalist and simp…

Ralph Nader (2021-02-22). Why Didn't Speaker Pelosi Want Witnesses? counterpunch.org Democratic leaders told the House managers to huddle privately with Trump's defense lawyers to strike a deal. They did. They would place a mere statement from Rep. Beutler into the trial record and call no witnesses. The Republicans couldn't have been more delighted, knowing that the Democratic leadership wanted the trial over that day before Congress went on a week-long vacation.

Ben Cowles (2021-02-22). NGO refugee rescue ship left waiting on European help that never came. peoplesworld.org An NGO refugee rescue ship in the central Mediterranean waited hours today for help from the Maltese and Italian coastguards that never came after the vessel saved the lives of 148 people, 28 more than it is legally allowed to carry. Basque charity Humanitarian Maritime Rescue (SMH) announced in the morning that the Aita Mari …

Online News Editor (2021-02-22). Spanish police find migrants hiding in bottle container, sealed bag of ash. laprensalatina.com Melilla, Spain, Feb 22 (efe-epa).- Spanish police on Monday said they recently discovered 41 migrants attempting to smuggle themselves to mainland Europe, including one man who had enclosed himself in an airtight plastic bag full of toxic ash. Police initially detected 35 migrants trying to make it through the port in Melilla, the Spanish autonomous …

Ragip Soylu (2021-02-22). Greece to install long-range cameras and radars along border with Turkey: Report. middleeasteye.net Greece to install long-range cameras and radars along border with Turkey: Report | Athens continues to tighten border security in a bid to discourage undocumented migration | Mon, 02/22/2021 – 10: 48 | Migrants near the fence of the Turkey-Greece border buffer zone in Edirne, Turkey, 7 March 2020 (AFP) | Greece will position radars and cameras with a range of up to 15km along its land border with Turkey…

teleSUR (2021-02-22). Witness to Pau D'Arco Massacre Murdered in Brazil. telesurenglish.net United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders Mary Lawlor on Monday called for the murder of Fernando dos Santos Araujo not to go unpunished. | RELATED: | On Jan. 26, Dos Santos Araujo was found shot in the head at his home in the state of Para. Previously, on May 24, 2017, he survived an assault by security forces on the Santa Lucia farm in the Pau D'Arco Municipality, where ten farmers occupyi…

Shatha Hammad (2021-02-22). 'They destroyed our dreams': Israel's bulldozers target Palestinian women farmers. middleeasteye.net 'They destroyed our dreams': Israel's bulldozers target Palestinian women farmers | The Palestinian women workforce faces a 'direct threat', as Israeli forces raze their agricultural lands | Mon, 02/22/2021 – 11: 05 | On 6 December 2020, Israeli bulldozers carried out one of the largest tree uprooting operations to date in the West Bank, destroying 3,400 olive trees in one day (Social media/Daoud A…

teleSUR (2021-02-22). Anti-Fake News Campaign Uses Image of a 'Naked' Bolsonaro. telesurenglish.net Reporters Without Borders (RSF) launched the "Naked Truth" campaign to denounce the fake news spread by Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro. | RELATED: | To do so, journalists used a photomontage of a naked Bolsonaro covered by a poster with the numbers of COVID-19 cases and related deaths. | "It is a symbolic way of confronting President Bolsonaro with the stark and naked reality of the facts, while he blames the press for the chaos in the c…

Anke Hàºls, Alberto C.S. Costa, Mara Dierssen, R. Asaad Baksh, Stefania Bargagna, Nicole T. Baumer, Ana Claudia Brandà£o, Angelo Carfi, Maria Carmona-Iragui, Brian Allen Chicoine, Sujay Ghosh, Monica Lakhanpaul, Coral Manso, Miguel-Angel Mayer, Maria del Carmen Ortega, Diego Real de Asua, Anne-Sophie Rebillat, Lauren Ashley Russell, Giuseppina Sgandurra, Diletta Valentini, Stephanie L. Sherman, Andre Strydom, T21RS COVID-19 Initiative (2021-02-22). Medical vulnerability of individuals with down syndrome to severe COVID-19 — data from the trisomy 21 research society and the UK ISARIC4C survey. thelancet.com Leading signs/symptoms of COVID-19 and risk factors for severe disease course are similar to the general population. However, individuals with DS present significantly higher rates of medical complications and mortality, especially from age 40.

RT (2021-02-22). US woman died after receiving coronavirus-infected lungs during organ transplant, study reveals. rt.com A Michigan woman died of Covid-19 last year after getting a double-lung transplant from a donor who turned out to be infected with the virus, according to a medical study describing the first such case in the US. | The unnamed organ recipient had chronic obstructive lung disease, while her donor was another woman, who succumbed to a severe brain injury after a car crash, a The surgery took place at the University Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan in mid-2020…

Online News Editor (2021-02-22). Govt's response sought over Indian guru's 'WHO-okayed' Covid-19 drug claim. laprensalatina.com New Delhi, Feb 22 (efe-epa).- A body of some 350,000 doctors in India on Monday sought a government response over a controversial yoga guru's "blatant lie" that the World Health Organization had certified a traditional medicine that he claims to be effective in treating Covid-19. Billionaire yogi Baba Ramdev, the co-founder of medicine-and-consumer-goods company Patanjali …

Online News Editor (2021-02-22). Singapore Open gets underway amid strict Covid rules. laprensalatina.com Bangkok, Feb 22 (efe-epa).- Singapore Open kicked off Monday behind closed doors amid restrictions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Tennis players, coaching teams and referees coming from outside Singapore will have to undergo daily PCR tests among other measures imposed by the organizers. At least 200 people have arrived in Singapore for the …

Online News Editor (2021-02-22). Vienna State Opera offers museum tours as Covid keeps stage empty. laprensalatina.com Vienna, Feb 22 (efe-epa).- The Vienna State Opera has shifted its focus from overtures and arias to galleries and paintings to welcome visitors as a museum while Austrian theaters remain closed due to Covid-19 restrictions. With the health crisis keeping the curtain down on live shows for now, officials at the famed opera house have …

RT (2021-02-22). 'Why would anyone get the jab after this?': AP criticized for saying Covid vaccination WON'T bring life back to normal. rt.com Mainstream US media is under fire for publishing an article telling Americans that life won't go back to normal even after they've been fully vaccinated against Covid-19 — and critics argue the message discourages vaccination. | In an AP

Jomo Kwame Sundaram (2021-02-22). IP, vaccine imperialism cause death and suffering, delay recovery. mronline.org Vaccine developers' refusal to share publicly funded vaccine research findings is stalling broader, affordable vaccinations which would more rapidly contain COVID-19 contagion. The pandemic had infected at least 109 million people worldwide, causing over 2.4 million deaths as of mid-February.

Peoples Dispatch (2021-02-22). Antonio Guterres criticizes unequal global access to COVID-19 vaccines, calls it 'wildly unfair'. mronline.org The UN secretary general pointed out that 75% of all vaccinations so far have been administered in just 10 rich countries, whereas 130 mostly poor countries have not received a single dose of vaccine.

Staff (2021-02-22). The pandemics of racism and COVID-19 are a deadly mix. therealnews.com A century of racist public policy laid the foundation for deep racial inequities in employment and vaccination rates in the U.S. pandemic response.

Online News Editor (2021-02-22). Australia begins vaccinating frontline workers amid controversy. laprensalatina.com Sydney, Australia, Feb 22 (efe-epa).- Australia on Monday began the first phase of its Covid-19 vaccination program by administering the vaccine to essential workers amid a controversy after Tennis Australia's president was booed for praising the vaccines during the presentation ceremony at the Australian Open. Australian authorities plan to distribute about 60,000 doses of the …

Online News Editor (2021-02-22). Hong Kong leader, top officials first to get Covid jabs. laprensalatina.com Hong Kong, Feb 22 (efe-epa).- Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam and her ministers became the first people in the city to receive the coronavirus vaccine Monday afternoon. Describing the vaccination as "a ray of light" shone on the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, the top leader said she was "extremely pleased" to be getting …

Online News Editor (2021-02-22). WHO chief: Some high-income countries undermining fair distribution of jabs. laprensalatina.com Berlin, Feb 22 (efe-epa).- The director-general of the World Health Organization Tedros Adhanom on Monday that some developed nations were striking Covid-19 vaccine deals that undermined the interests of Covax, the initiative to secure an equitable global distribution of jabs. "Some high-income countries are approaching manufacturers to secure more vaccines, which is affecting the deals …

teleSUR (2021-02-22). Peruvian Lawmakers to Be Tested to Discard Illegal Vaccinations. telesurenglish.net Peru's Congress this weekend passed a motion calling on all 130 lawmakers to undergo a test to rule out that they received a COVID-19 vaccine. | RELATED: | Supported by 111 Congress members, the decision seeks to discard that lawmakers are linked to the "VaccineGate" scandal which involves over 400 high-ranking government officials. | "We demand transparency and public objectivity," the Congress plenary stated, adding…

teleSUR (2021-02-22). Cuba Starts Large-Scale Production of Soberana 02 Vaccine. telesurenglish.net BioCubaFarma business group's President Eduardo Martinez Sunday informed on the large-scale production of a new batch of Soberana 02, the most advanced COVID-19 vaccine developed by the country so far. | RELATED: | "The effort to have a vaccine that protects Cubans and helps other peoples is enormous. We are moving forward, but under incredible political hostility," Martinez said and informed that Soberana 02 is being…

The Conversation (2021-02-22). WHO Busts Wuhan Myths: Pandemic started with wild Animal, not Lab, and Wet Market wasn't Ground Zero. juancole.com By Dominic Dwyer | — As I write, I am in hotel quarantine in Sydney, after returning from Wuhan, China. There, I was the Australian representative on the international World Health Organization's (WHO) investigation into the origins of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Much has been said of the politics surrounding the mission to investigate the viral …

The Canary (2021-02-22). US approaches coronavirus death toll of 500,000. thecanary.co The US stands on the brink of a once-unthinkable tally: 500,000 people lost to the coronavirus. | A year into the pandemic, the running total of lives lost is 498,897 — roughly the population of Kansas City, Missouri, and just shy of the size of Atlanta. | The figure compiled by Johns Hopkins University surpasses the number of people who died in 2019 of chronic lower respiratory diseases, stroke, Alzheimer's, flu and pneumonia combined. | America's top infectious disease expert Dr Anthony Fauci told CNN: It's nothing like we have ever been through in the last 102 years, since the 1918 influenza pandemic. | O…

Orinoco Tribune (2021-02-22). New European Union sanctions on democratic elections: 30 Venezuelan politicians to be sanctioned. mronline.org The European Union (EU) announced this Friday, February 19, that the body will sanction about thirty Venezuelan leaders for participating in the legislative elections last December, reported Europa Press, alluding to a "high ranked official" of the community bloc.

teleSUR (2021-02-22). Venezuela Lost Over $30 Billion Due To the US Blockade. telesurenglish.net At the 46th session of the United Nations, Human Rights Council (HRC) held on Monday, Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro repudiated the unilateral sanctions imposed by the United States and the European Union on his country and recalled that they have contributed to exhausting the epidemiological crisis. | RELATED: | "The U.S. has applied over 450 unilateral coercive measures, which have caused economic damage…

M. G. Piety (2021-02-22). Saving the Classics from Blindness. counterpunch.org Dan-el Padilla Peralta, a classics professor at Princeton, was the subject of a recent article in the New York Times Magazine entitled "He Wants to Save the Classics From Whiteness. Can the Field Survive?" Padilla, according to the article, believes classics, as an academic discipline, "has been instrumental to the invention of 'whiteness' and its continued domination." I won't argue with that. I don't know enough about classics as an academic discipline. I do know something about academic disciplines more generally, though, and I have to say that, in my experience, most are characterized by at least unconscious,…

Staff (2021-02-22). Nathan Robinson speaks about losing his Guardian column after criticizing Israel. therealnews.com Current Affairs Editor-in-Chief Nathan Robinson tweeted a joke satirizing U.S. support of Israel, and The Guardian newspaper cancelled his regular op-ed column. Now he speaks with TRNN about facing accusations of anti-Semitism for criticizing Israeli power on Capitol Hill.

Yves Engler (2021-02-22). Haitian Official stashes Wealth in Montréal. dissidentvoice.org Recent media reports of a Haitian official stashing wealth in Montréal property ignore a key element of the story: Canada's contribution to enabling Haitian corruption. As a neo-Duvalierist regime becomes ever more dictatorial it's also worth revisiting Canada's history in facilitating fraud and money laundering in the hemisphere's most impoverished nation. Recently La Presse reported …

Sonali Kolhatkar (2021-02-22). GOP Offers Preview of Brutal Climate Policies in Texas. counterpunch.org As Texas battles a severe snowstorm and mass power outages this winter, Tim Boyd, the now-former Republican mayor of Colorado City, revealed his party's plan for the deadly extreme temperatures linked to climate change. In a lengthy Facebook post that was deleted soon after it went viral, then-Mayor Boyd told his residents that they were entirely on their own as the brutal winter weather caused mayhem and deaths across the Lone Star state.

Peoples Dispatch (2021-02-22). Protests continue in Haiti against the dictatorship and imperialism. peoplesdispatch.org Another round of massive protests took place on February 21 calling for an end to the dictatorship of Jovenel MoàØse whose term was supposed to end on February 7…

Brett Wilkins (2021-02-22). Texas refineries used storm to hide release of tons of pollutants. peoplesworld.org Editor's note: This article has been reprinted from EcoWatch. Texas oil refineries released hundreds of thousands of pounds of pollutants including benzene, carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide, and sulfur dioxide into the air as they scrambled to shut down during last week's deadly winter storm, Reuters reported Sunday. Winter storm Uri, which killed dozens of people …

Jordan Woll (2021-02-22). Will Biden scrap Afghanistan withdrawal? liberationnews.org To the extent that the administration is still considering following through on the withdrawal, it is an expression of the military failure of the United States over the long course of the war.

Peoples Dispatch (2021-02-22). Red Books Day celebrated internationally to mark 173 years since the publication of 'The Communist Manifesto'. peoplesdispatch.org On February 21, 1948 the Manifesto of the Communist Party written by Karl Marx and Fredrick Engels was first published in the UK. The book is recognized as one of the most influential in the history of humankind and it has been translated in almost all languages in the world.

Erik Molvar (2021-02-22). "Apocalypse Cow:" Point Reyes National Seashore Launches a Propaganda War Targeting Independent Journalism. counterpunch.org Grab your popcorn: The battle over livestock destruction of natural ecosystems at Point Reyes National Seashore is heating up. For years, conservationists have pointed out the ecologically catastrophic toll that beef and dairy ranching has been having on native coastal prairies, the wildlife that depend on these places, and public health and safety. As the

Eds. (2021-02-22). Partners: China and Cuba. mronline.org In the 1960s, the main forms of the Chinese assistance offered to Cuba were preferential trade and interest-free loans. From 1961 to 1965, China gave Cuba an interest-free loan of 60 million U.S. dollars.

Miko Peled (2021-02-22). 2011 Book Gives Voice to Palestinian Women Who Survived 1948 Nakba. mintpressnews.com "If you'd only seen the bodies in the streets, if you only had seen the bodies. Little children without their shoes walking about the mayhem and crying."

Prensa Latina (2021-02-22). Cuba en vicepresidencia del Comité de ONU sobre Descolonización. peoplesworld.org Naciones Unidas, 18 feb (Prensa Latina) Cuba fue electa hoy para la vicepresidencia del Comité Especial de Descolonización de la ONU, cargo que asume con el compromiso de seguir luchando para erradicar el colonialismo en cualquiera de sus manifestaciones. Así expresó el representante permanente del país caribeño ante Naciones Unidas, Pedro Luis Pedroso, al asumir …

PAI (2021-02-22). Impeachment manager Raskin's last word on Trump: He's 'a traitor'. peoplesworld.org WASHINGTON (PAI)—Unveiling a key word he never uttered during Donald Trump's impeachment trial in mid-February, chief House impeachment manager Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., has labeled former White House Republican denizen Trump a "traitor." Raskin, a longtime constitutional law professor, delivered that verdict at the opening of a short Zoom video speech to the Government Employees …

George Ochenski (2021-02-22). Who Messed with Texas? counterpunch.org Texans like to brag endlessly about how great their state is, its "independence," and warn, "don't mess with Texas." But as millions of Texans now huddle freezing in the dark of this self-proclaimed "energy capital of the world," it might be worth thinking about how this tragedy happened, who and what caused it, and why Republican politicians are trying to blame renewable energy for a problem caused by poorly built and maintained fossil fuel generation facilities and the predatory capitalism of its deregulated energy system.

Brian W. Major (2021-02-22). 'Judas and the Black Messiah,' the story of revolutionary Black Panther Fred Hampton. peoplesworld.org In the summer of 2020, the United States, as in much of the world, experienced an uptick in activism around the issue of racial oppression. The recent increase in police killings of Black people, exemplified by George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, was answered by the militancy of those who have simply had too much. Black …

Hugo Murphy (2021-02-22). The Weekly Round-up: Free Speech: Chilling Effects or Phantom Threats? ukhumanrightsblog.com A number of legal developments put free speech under the spotlight this week. First, media commentators disputed the significance of the Duchess of Sussex's successful privacy claim against Associated Newspaper Limited, covered in last week's round-up. A leader in The Times issued the grave warning that 'Mr Justice Warby's judgment creates a precedent that will have a chilling effect on …

Alex Ewing (2021-02-22). Victims of human trafficking: can they be criminals as well? ukhumanrightsblog.com V.C.L. and A.N. v the United Kingdom (16 February 2021) Human trafficking is internationally recognised as threatening human rights and the fundamental values of democratic societies. States have taken action to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking and to provide support to victims of what is the third largest illicit money-making venture in the world. But …

Staff (2021-02-22). Headlines for February 22, 2021. democracynow.org Biden Declares Major Disaster in TX as Tragic Stories Emerge, Residents Hit with Soaring Power Bills, U.S. to Top 500,000 COVID Deaths as Democrats Advance $1.9 Trillion Stimulus Package, U.K. Eases Lockdown; Iranian Vaccine Shows Promising Results; Bolivia Health Workers Launch Strike, Protests Intensify in Burma After 3 Demonstrators Die Amid Violent Crackdown, Thailand Anti-Government Protests Continue After PM Survives No-Confidence Vote, Conservative Guillermo Lasso Advances to 2nd Round of Ecuadorian Presidential Election, Uber Drivers in U.K. Win Legal Battle to Be Recognized as Company Employees, Pentagon…