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Sun, 28 May 2023
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A Letter From Gulf Coast Activist Cherri Foytlin to The People

To the people of the United States of America:

For those of you who are reading this and do not know me. Let me introduce myself, my name is Cherri Foytlin, I am a mother of 6, and a wife to one devoted husband. We live in the Gulf of Mexico, and my husband is an offshore oil worker who has been home for 8 months now, due to the moratorium on deepwater drilling in the Gulf. We are still not working, I am sad to report, and yet the over a billion dollars sent to Mexico and South America to drill in the Gulf by our country, and the money China has invested in Cuba to drill, is in preparation, if not full operations.


Cherri Foytlin
But the bypassing of the American worker is not why I have written this, nor is the continuing impact of an oil catastrophe you are being told is over. While fresh and weathered oil, and dead wildlife, invade our shores daily; and our countrymen are battling illness from the effects; and our fishermen and citizens try to seek justice from the Gulf Coast Claims Facility that has been so incompetent in addressing their needs; and our waters and marshes wither and die; I come to you today to talk about life - yours and mine.

The American Dream, for some, began with those who came here to escape nightmares in their homelands. Some, found their nightmares here. Our forefathers are an odd mix: they were here before - living righteously on the earth, they came by boat and over mountains in search of a voice for their children, they came in chains that they broke themselves over years of steady pressure on the link. Whatever the background of our genes, you are the children of survivors, and they are in us all.


Terror Blast: At least 31 killed in Moscow's Domodedovo airport explosion

© RT.com
At least 31 people have been killed by a terrorist explosion at Moscow's busiest Airport, Domodedovo. Around one hundred and thirty others have been hurt by the blast in the luggage collection area of the international arrivals hall. Police say one, or several suicide bombers could be to blame.

Light Sabers

Moscow blast at Domodedovo airport: The search begins for who's responsible

Experts say the explosion, which killed at least 35, will likely be traced to Russia's volatile north Caucasus region, where political murders, bombings, and kidnappings occur almost daily.

A huge blast, reportedly triggered by a suicide bomber, hit Moscow's busiest airport Monday afternoon, killing at least 35 people and injuring over 130.

The bomb, which Russian news agencies said was equivalent to seven kilograms (15.4 pounds) of TNT, went off just after 3 p.m. in the crowded arrivals area of Domodedovo airport. Domodedovo is used as a Russia gateway by British Airways, Lufthansa, Cathay Pacific, El Al, and many airlines of former Soviet countries.

The domestic section of Domodedovo is the main arrival point for flights from Russia's troubled southern regions, including the north Cacasus.


Private Plane, Public Menace: Another reason Why Airport Security Doesn't Work

Wealthy travelers routinely bypass the TSA by flying on private jets. How long until al-Qaeda does the same?

Teterboro Airport, situated in the New Jersey Meadowlands, a short distance from the Lincoln Tunnel, is the LAX of the American plutocracy. It is an airport given over entirely to "general" aviation - general being a euphemism for "private." There are many different types of "general aviation" aircraft. A majority are very small, four- or six-seat propeller planes. A minority are much larger corporate jets of the sort found in great numbers on the Teterboro tarmac.

I do not ordinarily have access to corporate-aviation flights, but a few of my friends do, and I feel very warmly toward these friends when they ask me to join them aboard their planes, which is not often enough. Such an invitation came recently while I was in New York City for an appearance on The Colbert Report, during which I discussed our country's ludicrous aviation-security system. A friend let me know he was flying back to Washington that night on a private plane. Count me in, I said.


Update: Explosion kills 31 at Moscow airport

An explosion ripped through the international arrivals hall at Moscow's busiest airport on Monday, killing 31 people and wounding about 130, officials said. The Russian president called it a terror attack.

The state RIA Novosti news agency, citing law enforcement sources, said the mid-afternoon explosion at Domodedovo Airport may have been caused by a suicide bomber.


Domodedovo blast: Explosion rocks Moscow's main airport

© Unknown
Moscow's Domodedovo airport - the busiest in the Russian capital - has been rocked by an explosion that has reportedly killed at least 23 people.

More than 100 more are thought to have been injured in the blast, which reports suggest may have been the work of a suicide bomber.

Russia's chief investigator said the explosion was the work of terrorists.

The airport is 40km (25 miles) south-east of the city centre, and is popular with foreign workers and tourists.

Emergency services are on the scene and tending to the wounded.

Early local reports suggested the blast hit the baggage reclaim area of the international arrivals hall.

A RIA Novosti news agency correspondent at the scene reported that a lot of smoke could be seen in the area, and there was a smell of burning.


Disadvantaged turn to disobedience in US

Caught in the eye of the financial crisis, underprivileged Americans have begun seeking ways to subvert system inequality by turning to the new tactic of economic disobedience.

Researchers and activists are documenting that wages in the US have been dropping while benefits and pensions are being cut. In the face of this, some have turned to a different form of protest that does not entail carrying placards or statement-making arrests. This form of resistance is happening in places hardly visible.

In poor neighborhoods in New York City, some residents organize to raise a little money to buy subway cards offering unlimited rides, and swipe as many people in as they can to give them a free ride.

For Ollie, one of the activists who organizes this form of disobedience, most importantly it is a response to an economic system that he sees as unfair.

"Taxes are cut for wealthy people and there are bailouts for banks and none of it reaches people in this neighborhood, and we think that is wrong," Ollie said.

Bizarro Earth

Gulf Coast Fighting for Recompense

shut down sign
© Erika Blumenfeld
Gulf Coast businesses are closing down as they fail to secure compensation payouts
Residents and fishermen outraged as BP's compensation fund administrator denies 'loss of income' claims.

"I just got off the phone with Feinberg's people and I'm really upset," says seafood merchant Michelle Chauncey from Barataria, Louisiana.

Her business, which sells wholesale and retail crabs, has not provided her with an income since the end of May, and her home is being foreclosed.

Attorney Kenneth Feinberg's Washington-based firm, Feinberg Rozen, has been paid $850,000 a month by BP to administer a $20bn compensation fund and claims process for Gulf residents and fishermen affected by the Deepwater Horizon explosion last April.

The Gulf Coast Claims Facility (GCCF), which Feinberg manages, was set up after negotiations between BP and the Obama administration, but over recent months there has been growing concern among the Coast's residents that Feinberg is limiting compensation funds to claimants in order to decrease BP's liability.


US: Woman Arrested For Sending Boy, 12, Into The Cold

police sirens
© CBS News
A woman was arrested after allegedly kicking her 12-year-old son out into the cold early Sunday morning in the Hill District.

According to the criminal complaint, officers were called to the corner of Chauncey Street and Webster Avenue for a juvenile not wearing shoes at 2:22 a.m.

Officers transported the boy to a home in the 700-block of Junilla Street. After officers knocked on the door several times, 32-year-old Camella Cosby answered.

She was asked about the events of the evening and stated, "He wanted to leave, so I let him leave."

Cosby was taken into custody after officers noticed "glassy blood shot eyes" and alcohol on her breath.

Officers searched the house and noticed no furniture, beds and minimal clothing for the children in the home.

Light Saber

People Power: Phil Mocek found "NOT GUILTY" by Albuquerque jury

© unknown
Phil Mocek
A six-woman Bernalillo County Metropolitan Court jury has found Phil Mocek "NOT GUILTY" of all of the charges brought against him following his arrest in November 2009 at the TSA checkpoint at the Albuquerque airport.

We'll be posting more details as well as audio recordings and photos of the trial. The jury returned its verdict (video of verdict and Mr. Mocek's reaction) Friday evening after about an hour of deliberation, following a two-day trial we attended.

Mr. Mocek did not testify, and the defense rested on Friday without calling any witnesses or presenting any evidence. the jury found that even without rebuttal, the TSA and Albuquerque police had failed to satisfy their burden of proving any of the four charges: concealing his identity, refusing to obey a lawful order (it was never entirely clear whether this was supposed to have been an order to turn off his camera, an order to leave the airport despite having a valid ticket, or an order to show ID, none of which would have been lawful orders), trespassing, and disorderly conduct.

The best evidence in the case was the video from Mr. Mocek's digital camera (bellow) that both the TSA and the police had tried to stop Mr. Mocek from filming, and which ended when they seized his camera out of his hands and shut it off. In her closing argument, defense counsel Molly Schmidt-Nowara argued that the police and TSA witnesses were not credible, that their testimony was contradicted by the video and by common sense, that what they really objected to was having Mr. Mocek legally take pictures, and that any disorderly conduct was on the part of the police and TSA.