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When Salvador Allende Told Us Happiness Is a Human Right

Source: The Nation

Now, for the first time, an adviser recalls a remarkable 1971 conversation with Chile’s socialist leader.

On September 11, 1973, a military coup in Chile—assisted by the CIA under orders from President Richard Nixon and his national-security adviser, Henry Kissinger—violently overthrew the socialist government of President Salvador Allende, ended his life, and brought to power the murderous dictatorship of Gen. Augusto Pinochet.

Shortly after Allende took office, he gave a long interview to the radical French intellectual Régis Debray, who questioned Allende about the Chilean road to socialism, which seemed to contradict the prevailing view that socialism could only be achieved through armed struggle and revolution, not electoral politics. An extended version of that interview appeared in Debray’s book Conversations With Allende, still available from Verso Books. read more

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Why Trump’s New Strategy for Afghanistan Is the Disaster You’d Expect It to Be

Source: Alternet

On August 21, President Donald Trump announced that he plans to send more thousands of U.S. troops to Afghanistan to extend the American war that began in 2001. The speech Trump gave has no details, only a tweetable line: ‘We are not nation-building again. We are killing terrorists.’

Three days later, Trump’s senior general in Afghanistan, John Nicholson, said that the United States military would crush ISIS in Afghanistan. The Taliban, General Nicholson said, should come to the negotiation table, while the U.S. would expand its attack on ISIS and al-Qaeda. It is therefore reasonable to assume that when Trump said he wants the U.S. military to kill terrorists, he meant ISIS and al-Qaeda, not the Taliban. read more

Shannon Rivers protested Trump at the Phoenix rally on Tuesday. For Rivers, a tribal citizen of the Akimel O’odham of the Gila River Indian Community, the alliance between indigenous people and Latinos is personal. “Many [Latinos] are our family,” he said. Photo by Jenni Monet.

“This Is Our Land”: Indigenous Rights Activists Respond to White Supremacist Rhetoric

“The historical trauma is still happening today. We’re still suffering but in different ways,” said Anthony Thosh Collins, a citizen of the Onk Akimel O’odham with the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community. For Collins and dozens of other indigenous rights activists, their message in response to recent white supremacist rhetoric was simple: “This is our land.”

The aftermath of a previous demolition of the Bedouin village of Al-Araqeeb (Getty Images)

The Resistance of Al-Araqeeb Village: How Palestinian Bedouins Refused to Surrender 116 Times

On August 1, the Palestinian Bedouin village of Al-Araqeeb was destroyed for the 116th time. As soon as Israeli bulldozers finished their ugly deed and soldiers began evacuating the premises, the village resident immediately began rebuilding their homes. If the repeated destruction of the village is an indication of Israel's stubborn insistence to uproot Palestine's Bedouins, the rebuilding is indicative of the tenacity of the Bedouin community in Palestine.

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The Air We Breathe: A Conversation With Arundhati Roy

Source: The Nation

The writer discusses her new novel, love, justice, and Indian politics.

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness is a formal departure for you. Your previous novel, The God of Small Things, was essentially about a family. By contrast, Ministry is a sprawling political novel: It addresses impunity, caste, institutional violence, the rise of Hindutva, the troubles in Kashmir. You allude to this through a funny in-joke: In “The Reader’s Digest Book of English Grammar and Comprehension for Very Young Children,” which your protagonist Tilo is composing, she confesses that she “would like to write one of those sophisticated stories in which, even though nothing much happens, there’s a lot to write about.” But then she admits that this “can’t be done in Kashmir. It’s not sophisticated what happens here. There’s too much blood for good literature.” What are the challenges of dealing with this sort of subject matter? read more