Bulletin N° 109


25 February 2004
Grenoble, France

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Our Research Center has continued to receive messages and articles from readers and associates who find the attempts to overthrow American democratic institutions and traditions interesting material for research, and also for humor.

Will the villans succeed in reducing the United States of America to the status of a banna republic?

Some of the American architechts of today's actual banna republics, such as Elliott Abrams, it would seem, are working day and night in Washington, D.C. to dismantal dissent and establish a corporate society around the world.

Or is democracy an irrepressible urge, from Palestine to Peoria? Will the evil doers succeed in building more borders and excluding people from a good life? Stay tuned.....

Meanwhile, "serious" attempts have been made to annihilate these rogues with humor. See items A. and B. below, sent to us by professors Derioz and Benrabah.

Next, in item C., Michael Albert of ZNet offers us a new source of information, more raw material for daily analysis and for humor.

Then, in item D., our research associate Professor Elisabeth Chamorand offers us new sources of information on the state of World Health and new tactics for extracting still higher private profits.

In item E. our graduate student, Benjamin Monange, has called our attention to a recent article by Noam Chomsky, published in the New York Times, offering a cogent analysis of Israel's new borders, aka "The Wall".

And finally, items F. and G. are communications from our research associate Fred Lonidier, celebrating the skill of crossing borders and offering a discussion on the art of making borders disappear.

Francis McCollum Feeley
Professor of American Studies/
Director of Research

from Professor Jean Derioz
10 February 2004

Subject: An Important Question

This test only has one question, but it's a very important one. Please don't answer it without giving it some serious thought. By giving
an honest answer you will be able to test where you stand morally. The test features an unlikely, completely fictional situation, where you will have to make a decision one way or the other. Remember that your answer needs to be honest, yet spontaneous. Please scroll down slowly and consider each line - this is important for the test to work accurately.

You're in Florida...In Miami, to be exact... There is great chaos going on around you, caused by a hurricane and severe floods. There are huge masses of water all over you. You are a CNN photographer and you are in the middle of this great disaster.

The situation is nearly hopeless.

You're trying to shoot very impressive photos. There are houses and people floating around you, disappearing into the water.

Nature is showing all its destructive power and is ripping everything away with it.

Suddenly you see a man in the water, he is fighting for his life, trying not to be taken away by the masses of water and mud.

You move closer. Somehow the man looks familiar.

Suddenly you know who it is - it's George W. Bush!

At the same time you notice that the raging waters are about to take him away, forever.

You have two options. You can save him or you can take the best photo of your life.

So you can save the life of George W. Bush, or you can shoot a Pulitzerprize winning photo, a unique photo displaying the death of one of the world's most powerful men.

And here's the question (please give an honest answer):

Would you select colour film, or rather go with the simplicity of classic black and white?

from Professor Mohamed Benrabah
8 February 2004

Subject: Humor from Europe

Here is a nice one from Jean-Claude Buchot.

George W Bush goes to a primary school to talk about the war. After his talk he invites questions. One little boy puts up his hand, and the President asks him his name.


"And what is your question, Billy?"

"I have three questions," says the boy. "First - why did the USA invade Iraq without the support of the UN?; Second - why are you President when Al Gore got more votes?; and Third - whatever happened to Osama bin Laden?"

Just then the bell rings for recess. George W Bush informs the children that they will continue after recess.

When they resume, the President says: "Okay where were we? Oh that's right, question time. Who has a question?"

A different little boy puts his hand, George points him out and asks his name.


"And what is your question, Steve?"

"I have five questions: First - why did the USA invade Iraq without the support of the UN?; Second - why are you President when Al Gore got more votes?; Third - whatever happened to Osama bin Laden?; Fourth - why did the recess bell go 20 minutes early?; and Fifth - what happened to Billy?"

from Michael Albert
31 January 2004

I would also like to remind you to take a look at The NewStandard at http://newstandardnews.net/

The NewStandard provides an online international newspaper which each user can customize to their own tastes and preferences, plus diverse interactivity tools and features like forums, chat, etc. Brian Dominick who worked for many years on ZNet and is responsible for many of ZNet's most advanced features, Jessica Azulay a ZNet Commentator, and a number of other hard working folks have created and are trying to bring The NewStandard to fruition -- but they can't do this if people don't visit and support their efforts.

The NewStandard is a herculean project. It has been carried out, thus far, with tremendous dexterity, insight, and scope. So, please, when you have a chance, pay them a visit at http://newstandardnews.net/ We think you will be happy you did.

from Professor Elisabeth Chamorand
24 February 2004

if you click on www.cptech.org, and then on essential medicines and then on the sign for research and indicate Farmer on Haiti, you get several interesting articles and books. Paul Farmer is a renowned Harvard anthropologist who has done a lot for people with AIDS in Haiti.

from Benjamin Monange
22 February 2004

Hi Mr. Feeley,
Here’s an article by Noam Chomsky about the Israeli “security” wall. It was published in today’s issue of the New York Times.


A Wall as a Weapon


CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — It is a virtual reflex for governments to plead security concerns when they undertake any controversial action, often as a pretext for something else. Careful scrutiny is always in order. Israel's so-called security fence, which is the subject of hearings starting today at the International Court of Justice in The Hague, is a case in point.

Few would question Israel's right to protect its citizens from terrorist attacks like the one yesterday, even to build a security wall if that were an appropriate means. It is also clear where such a wall would be built if security were the guiding concern: inside Israel, within the internationally recognized border, the Green Line established after the 1948-49 war. The wall could then be as
forbidding as the authorities chose: patrolled by the army on both sides, heavily mined, impenetrable. Such a wall would maximize security, and there would be no international protest or violation of international law.

This observation is well understood. While Britain supports America's opposition to the Hague hearings, its foreign minister, Jack Straw, has written that the wall is "unlawful." Another ministry official, who inspected the "security fence," said it should be on the Green Line or "indeed on the Israeli side of the line." A British parliamentary investigative commission also called for the wall to be built on Israeli land, condemning the barrier as part of a "deliberate" Israeli "strategy of bringing the population to heel."

What this wall is really doing is taking Palestinian lands. It is also — as the Israeli sociologist Baruch Kimmerling has described
Israel's war of "politicide" against the Palestinians — helping turn Palestinian communities into dungeons, next to which the
bantustans of South Africa look like symbols of freedom, sovereignty and self-determination.

Even before construction of the barrier was under way, the United Nations estimated that Israeli barriers, infrastructure projects
and settlements had created 50 disconnected Palestinian pockets in the West Bank. As the design of the wall was coming into
view, the World Bank estimated that it might isolate 250,000 to 300,000 Palestinians, more than 10 percent of the population,
and that it might effectively annex up to 10 percent of West Bank land. And when the government of Ariel Sharon finally published its proposed map, it became clear the the wall would cut the West Bank into 16 isolated enclaves, confined to just 42 percent of the West Bank land that Mr. Sharon had previously said could be ceded to a Palestinian state.

The wall has already claimed some of the most fertile lands of the West Bank. And, crucially, it extends Israel's control of critical water resources, which Israel and its settlers can appropriate as they choose, while the indigenous population often lacks water for drinking.

Palestinians in the seam between the wall and the Green Line will be permitted to apply for the right to live in their own homes;
Israelis automatically have the right to use these lands. "Hiding behind security rationales and the seemingly neutral bureaucratic
language of military orders is the gateway for expulsion," the Israeli journalist Amira Hass wrote in the daily Haaretz. "Drop by
drop, unseen, not so many that it would be noticed internationally and shock public opinion." The same is true of the regular
killings, terror and daily brutality and humiliation of the past 35 years of harsh occupation, while land and resources have been
taken for settlers enticed by ample subsidies.

It also seems likely that Israel will transfer to the occupied West Bank the 7,500 settlers it said this month it would remove from
the Gaza Strip. These Israelis now enjoy ample land and fresh water, while one million Palestinians barely survive, their meager
water supplies virtually unusable. Gaza is a cage, and as the city of Rafah in the south is systematically demolished, residents may be blocked from any contact with Egypt and blockaded from the sea.

It is misleading to call these Israeli policies. They are American-Israeli policies — made possible by unremitting United States
military, economic and diplomatic support of Israel. This has been true since 1971 when, with American support, Israel rejected a full peace offer from Egypt, preferring expansion to security. In 1976, the United States vetoed a Security Council resolution calling for a two-state settlement in accord with an overwhelming international consensus. The two-state proposal has the support of a majority of Americans today, and could be enacted immediately if Washington wanted to do so.

At most, the Hague hearings will end in an advisory ruling that the wall is illegal. It will change nothing. Any real chance for a
political settlement — and for decent lives for the people of the region — depends on the United States.

Noam Chomsky, professor of linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is the author of "Hegemony or
Survival: America's Quest for Global Dominance."

from Professor Fred Lonidier
24 February 2004

Subject: UCSD CROSSING BORDERS conference


2nd Annual Ethnic Studies Conference
Friday and Saturday March 5 and 6, 2004
University of California, San Diego
Conference website:

Every day, people of color and immigrants are crossing borders, building
communities, and forging new possibilities in increasingly hostile
conditions. In this context, citizenship, social justice, and culture take
on new meaning, particularly as our nation (and especially the state of
California) undergoes dramatic demographic and political transformations.
This conference is the second in a series organized by the Ethnic Studies
programs at UC Berkeley, University of Southern California, and UC San
Diego. The event is organized around the work of Ph.D. students in
California doing research on a range of racial, ethnic, and immigrant
communities. Faculty will serve as panel chairs and discussants. This
Conference features graduate student panelists and faculty discussants from
the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), University of California,
Berkeley (UCB), the University of Southern California (USC), the University
of San Diego (USD), San Diego State University (SDSU), and California State
University, San Marcos (CSUSM). Also present will be several outstanding
graduate student-observers from campuses around the nation, who are a part
of a Graduate Student Pilot Workshop program, sponsored by UCSD’s Acting
Chancellor, Marsha Chandler.
Keynote Speaker: Professor and Activist Haunani-Kay Trask
Entertainment: San Diego's own: Los Alacranes
2nd Annual Crossing Borders Conference, Co-Sponsored by:
Department of Ethnic Studies, California Cultures in Comparative
Perspective, Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity, the Center for
Comparative Immigration Studies, and the Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies,
University of California, San Diego;
Program in American Studies & Ethnicity, University of Southern California
Department of Ethnic Studies, University of California, Berkeley
*Registration: There is no registration fee. Please send confirmation of
your attendance to: nagdav@cox.net
*All Dinner and evening events will be held at the Radisson La Jolla
Hotel, 3299 Holiday Court, La Jolla, CA 92037. Phone: 858-453-5500.
Associate Professor Department of Ethnic Studies-0522 Director, California
Cultures in Comparative Perspective Room 201, Social Science Buidling
University of California, San Diego 9500 Gilman Drive La Jolla, California
92093-0522 Ph. (858) 822-5118 Fax: (858) 534-8194 Internet:
dpellow@ucsd.edu California Cultures Website:

Crossing Borders Conference Web Site:

from Professor Fred Lonidier
23 February 2004

Subject: Art of Resistance political artists' conference

Hello Francis!
An update on the Art of Resistance political artists' conference
taking place this Spring in Seattle. In order to meet the overwhelming
interest and support we are receiving from artists across the country, we
have decided to hold the conference in May (previously scheduled for the
end of March.) We hope this enables even more of you to attend and
participate in the great workshops and events that will take place during
the conference. The following letter is a bit more about the Art of
Resistance and how you can plug in. Feel free to forward this info on.


MAY 2004 ­ SEATTLE, Washington

About the conference: The conference will be two days of amazing speakers
and performers, informative, hands-on workshops and the opportunity to
meet and talk with a whole building full of political artists from all
over the country. We will explore the powerful history and practical
application of political art. Political artists confront, transcend and
illuminate the crises of our complex global reality, yet often are kept
invisible to much of their audience. We will discuss how, in these days of
war, environmental degradation, corporate hegemony, poverty, and
injustice, to make our voice and our art an effective force for change.
There will be several open public evening events, with art and
performance, and an open political art show. If you would like to donate
art for the show, please contact us for a mailing address. Also, please
indicate if prints can be made of your work for fundraising efforts. This
is an entirely grassroots funded conference. We appreciate any and all
donations. Cash donations are tax deductible. Contact us for more info.
How you can support/participate: 1. Attend the conference. Official info
will be sent out in the next month. Pre-registration is not absolutely
required but is greatly appreciated. Request a registration application
and it will be sent out soon. We are also seeking sponsors!
2. Donate political art! This grassroots organized conference aims to be
an annual event. Help us make this first year fabulous! Donate your
political art (or someone else’s) for fundraising efforts. We will have
several pre-conference events where we will auction donated art and sell
prints, t-shirts, books… We will also have a political art booth at the
weekly Sunday Fremont Market in Seattle. In addition, we will host an open
political art show during the conference. Donate art towards these
efforts! You can also donate your musical/theatrical talents by performing
at one of our upcoming benefits and/or during the conference. Contact us
for more info.
3. Donate funds! Money, that rare and precious commodity, is SO
appreciated! All funds donated will go directly into the conference. Your
donation will print posters, pay for the location which will host us, buy
art materials for workshops and more! We know its hard to come by these
days, especially for artists, but whatever you are able to will be put to
good use, benefiting many worthy conference participants. Donations are
tax deductible. Write us for our tax ID number. We love you!
4. Organize/host a workshop. We are seeking a few more artists to
coordinate and hold workshops during the conference. If you are
interested, please send us a brief proposal/workshop outline and we will
send you a workshop hosting application. Also, if you are interested in
sharing your skills in other ways, please let us know. We appreciate all
the support y’all offer up!
Workshops: The following is a list of some of the subjects/ideas of the
workshops which will be available for your participation at the Art of
Resistance conference. Participants will have the opportunity to join in
up to five workshops over the course of the two days. Workshops will
explore everything from practical skills such as silkscreening and
graffiti/stenciling to how to make giant puppets. Workshop hosts will
discuss how to make protest more creative, how to influence corporate
media, how to make your own media. From street theater, spoken word, and
political performance to street tech workshops to understanding the rights
of protest are to discussions about race, class and sex in the
(political) art world to what political art is and how to create effective
public art. If you are interested in hosting a workshop, contact us with a
general proposal and we will send you an application.
Artists: This list is to give you an idea of who is supporting and/or
interested in attending the Art of Resistance conference. The following
are just a few of the individuals and collectives who have contacted us so
far. Feel free to pass on info to artists you would like to see involved.
The Beehive Collective, political graphics collective (www.beehivecollective.org),
Drawing Resistance, a travelling political art show (www.drawingresistance.org),
Mike Alewitz, labor muralist,
JustSeeds (www.justseeds.org),
ACLU (workshop: freedom of expression for artists),
Tactical Magic, SF artists’ collective (www.tacticalmagic.org),
Banksy, UK graffiti artist (www.banksy.co.uk),
Richard Mock, NY political printmaker,
Adbusters (www.adbusters.org),
Mad River Puppet Collective,
Somarts Cultural Center,
PAX Arts Exchange,
Gabriel Delgado of the Station Political Art Museum,
TX, Praxis Artists,
Infernal Noise Brigade,
Think Again!,
UpsideDown Culture Collective,
Northland Poster Collective (www.northlandposter.com),
Mark Vallen, SF political artist (www.art-for-a-change.org),
Why? Artists Against the War,
Poetry in Wartime,
and many more!

We have had responses and letters of support from NY to SF, Denver to Detroit, Austin to Anchorage, France, Spain, Egypt and Iraq. Looking forward to meeting you all this May!

Contact Art of Resistance: artofresistance@riseup.net
www.artofresistance.org (This site is under construction but will be up soon!)