Category Archives: Political Repression

Sojourner Truth show Earth Minute on U Florida censorship of GE trees talk

Global Justice Ecology Project teams up weekly with Pacifica’s Sojourner Truth show hosted by Margaret Prescod to cover important news about the environment.  Every Tuesday we produce an “Earth Minute” and each Thursday an “Earth Watch” interview segment with an activist from the front lines of the battle to protect mother Earth.

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Filed under Climate Change, Corporate Globalization, Earth Minute, Earth Radio, Forests, GE Trees, Genetic Engineering, Greenwashing, Political Repression

BREAKING: University of Florida threatens to arrest anti-GMO presenters and bans them from campus

Note: Members of Global Justice Ecology Project and the Campaign to STOP GE Trees are touring the southeastern US to raise awareness about the risks of genetically engineered trees.  See when they are coming to your town here:

-The GJEP Team

October 28, 2013

ufpoliceGainesville, FL–The University of Florida, a leading institution researching genetically engineered (GE) trees, threatened to arrest activists from the Campaign to STOP GE Trees when they arrived on campus Saturday to prepare for a presentation to highlight critical perspectives on tree biotechnology that was scheduled for tonight. The police informed the group that their presentation had been cancelled, and warned them that they were banned from University of Florida (UF) property for three years.

“Evicting us from campus was a blatant act of censorship by the University of Florida, likely linked to the millions they are receiving for GE trees research,” said Keith Brunner, from the international Campaign to STOP Genetically Engineered Trees.

In 2011, the University of Florida School of Forest Resources and Conservation along with GE tree company ArborGen won a three-year, $6.3 million grant from the US Department of Energy to develop GE loblolly pines for liquid biofuel production. There is rising opposition to GE trees due to concerns over genetic contamination, increased flammability, deforestation and other ecological impacts of industrial tree plantations.

The UF presentation was part of a multi-week speaking tour titled “The Growing Threat: Genetically Engineered Trees and the Future of Forests.”  The tour will travel through several southern states (NC, GA, FL, SC) to educate the public about the social and environmental threats posed by the proposed commercial release of billions of genetically engineered freeze tolerant eucalyptus trees in seven southern states from South Carolina to Florida to Texas.
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Filed under Actions / Protest, Bioenergy / Agrofuels, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, False Solutions to Climate Change, Forests, GE Trees, Genetic Engineering, Green Economy, Political Repression

Remembering the Kent State shooting: 43 years later

By Dave Ross, Vietnam Veterans Against the War, Will Miller Green Mountain Veterans for Peace, 4 May, 2013

Kent State Ohio, touched by history. Last night I met, and talked briefly with, Dean Kahler following a candlelight march to honor and remember the four students shot down in cold blood by the Ohio National Guard and the nine students they wounded. The students were shot down for protesting the war in Vietnam, my war, they were neither violent nor even threatening. Of the wounded who lived, Dean received the worst injuries and will spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair. In the candlelight, he still looked young; he is appreciative that people still remember what happened that day at Kent and Jackson state.

I was with my friends from Vietnam Veterans Against the War / Old School Sappers who are also members of Veterans for Peace. In my memory of pictures I have seen of the Guard shooting down on the students, the hill they are standing looks impressive. Actually, it’s just a little rise looking over a nondescript parking area – just nothing dramatic at all. The organizers had laid out four tiny “plots” where the students fell – these small, empty spaces are where we left our candles and America left its soul.

For GJEP Board Chair and co-founder Orin Langelle’s blog post about Kent State including his photo from the Kent State protest at the 1972 Republican National Convention, visit the Langelle Photography website

Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young–Ohio


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Filed under Actions / Protest, Political Repression

KPFK Sojourner Truth Earth Minute: First Nation challenging Shell tar sands expansion denied hearing in Canadian Supreme Court, vows to join Idle No More direct action campaign

Global Justice Ecology Project teams up with KPFK’s Sojourner Truth show for weekly Earth Minutes every Tuesday and Earth Watch interviews every Thursday.

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Filed under Climate Change, Climate Justice, Corporate Globalization, Earth Minute, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, Indigenous Peoples, Political Repression, Rights, Resilience, and Restoration, Tar Sands

Audio: “Green is Green” interview with animal rights activist Josh Harper

By Roxanne Amico, April 11, 2013. Source: Spiritmorph Studio

Click here to listen to this installment of “Rad Rox the Roots”:  An audio series sowing narrative seeds to cultivate a future of justice & sustainability;  a series sharing voices & visions of people with a deep critique of the current culture:  What’s at stake in the battles we are fighting;  the forces we are up against;  and what we can do about it together.

Today’s segment is titled, “Green is Green”, and it’s an interview with Josh Harper, the anarchist from Oregon who was one of the SHAC (Stop Huntington Animal Cruelty) 7.  SHAC was an international animal rights campaign initiated in the Pacific Northwest in the 2000’s, with the intention to shut down a UK research organization called Huntington Life Sciences, infamous for their testing of harmful medical and other substances on 10’s of 1,000’s of animals every year.

Josh spoke at Burning Books in Buffalo NY on the 28th of Feb., 2013, and Radio Roxanne had a chance to meet up with him in a café, where we talked about how people of conscience resist the power of the state and its corporate sponsors.  We talked about his call for “Revolution Before It’s Too Late” (title of his talk in Feb.), about his identity as an activist, his influences, his mistakes, and what he learned.

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Independent Media, Political Repression

On Not Attending the UN Climate Conference in Doha

By Anne Petermann, Executive Director, Global Justice Ecology Project

Christina Figueres, Executive Director of the UNFCCC

Christina Figueres, Executive Director of the UNFCCC at the Durban Climate COP in 2011.  Photo: Langelle/GJEP

For the first time since 2004, Global Justice Ecology Project did not sent any representatives to the annual UN Climate Conference (COP).  There were numerous reasons for this decision, one of which was a letter sent to us by Ms. Christina Figueres, Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC (UN Framework Convention on Climate Change) “suspending” three Global Justice Ecology Project activists from participating in Doha.  The list includes Lindsey Gillies, Keith Brunner and me–Global Justice Ecology Project’s “Head of Delegation.” We were officially banned from participating in any of the UNFCCC negotiating sessions in 2012 as well as any future sessions unless we sign a document agreeing to their terms to abide by their special “code of conduct” for observers.  Right.

Figueres page 1

Figueres page 2

Our crime?  Direct action.   Unpermitted, disobedient direct action in both Cancun and Durban designed to highlight the mounting repression against non-corporate observers.  (We also worked for over a year to help organize the amazing Reclaim Power action and Peoples’ Assembly at COP 15 in Copenhagen, which exposed the ineffectiveness of the UNFCCC and called for people to take their power back–though the letter did not mention that).

Over the years we have watched the UNFCCC become more and more like the World Trade Organization that we and many anti-corporate globalization organizations rose up against in the latter 1990s and early 2000s.

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Carbon Trading, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Copenhagen/COP-15, Corporate Globalization, False Solutions to Climate Change, Forests, GE Trees, Indigenous Peoples, Land Grabs, Political Repression, Posts from Anne Petermann, REDD, UNFCCC

MO senators and congressman ask army to provide answers on Cold War-era human testing experiments in St. Louis

Note: Since Monday, 24 September, when we published the article Breaking News: Secret US military testing of radiological materials on poor and minority  on our Climate Connections blog, it has become one of the most read articles  since the blog’s debut in 2009.  GJEP also worked with the Institute for Public Accuracy, on their press release  Exposed: Secret Cold War Inhalation Experiments on Poor, Minority Communities in St. Louis; Possible Radiological Testing, as well as The Sojourner Truth show on KPFK Los Angeles and other media to help make sure that more people are informed of the secret testing.
Our prelude to Monday’s Climate Connections article stated:  In a story that is breaking right now, Dr. Lisa Martino-Taylor, a sociologist in St. Louis. MO (US), has introduced evidence that “secret military tests conducted during the Cold War targeted poor and minority communities for exposure to what is likely radiological material.”

The following is an update on the cover-up.
–The GJEP Team

Compiled by Orin Langelle and Anne Petermann
U.S. Senators Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., and Roy Blunt, R-Mo are calling for an investigation into the secret testing on humans during the Cold War.
After hearing that Senator Blunt and Senator McCaskill are asking for an investigation related to the 1953-1954 and 1963-1965 open-air military/USPHS tests, which focused on the DeSoto Carr, Pruitt-Igoe and other affected areas, Dr. Lisa Martino-Taylor told us, “any real and legitimate investigation will include public comment and participation from former residents in the affected areas.  Their voices have not been heard.  It would be very inappropriate for government agencies- some of which designed these tests- to conduct an investigation without availing themselves of the first-hand experiences of those residents who were directly affected.”
Select quotes from yesterday’s online St. Louis Beacon:

“Given the nature of these experiments, it’s not surprising that Missouri citizens still have questions and concerns about what exactly occurred and if there may have been any negative health effects,” McCaskill said in a statement.

“The National Research Council recommended that additional studies should be conducted and it’s my goal to find out whether or not they were.”

In a statement, Blunt said, “The idea that thousands of Missourians were unwillingly exposed to harmful materials in order to determine their health effects is absolutely shocking. It should come as no surprise that these individuals and their families are demanding answers of government officials.”

In his letter, Blunt asked the Army to report on the specific areas exposed to the spraying, the health impact of exposure to the chemical compounds, and whether there was indeed a radioactive component to the testing in Missouri.

U.S. Rep. William Lacy Clay, D-St. Louis, whose congressional district includes some of the affected parts of the city, said Thursday that “it’s time for the Army to come clean and tell us the truth.”

“The Army has never revealed the full story about this outrageous and irresponsible Cold War testing in the midst of our community,” Clay said in a statement to the Beacon. “It’s unclear if the recommended follow-up testing was ever conducted, and if any long-term health risks exist.”

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Breaking News: Secret US military testing of radiological materials on poor and minority communities

In a story that is breaking right now, Dr. Lisa Martino-Taylor, a sociologist in St. Louis. MO (US), has introduced evidence that “secret military tests conducted during the Cold War targeted poor and minority communities for exposure to what is likely radiological material.”

In an article yesterday, commenting on Dr. Martino-Taylor’s research, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch said:  “Relying heavily on documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, Martino-Taylor identifies connections between participants in St. Louis testing and scientists who took part in wartime efforts to build the atomic bomb.”

GJEP’s Board Chair Orin Langelle and  Executive Director, Anne Petermann interviewed Dr. Martino-Taylor while they were in St. Louis, last week.

–The GJEP Team

By Orin Langelle and Anne Petermann

During an interview we conducted last week in St. Louis, MO, Dr. Lisa Martino-Taylor gave us a long description of research she had conducted into a major military cover up of the use of U.S. citizens as test subjects for military experiments related to the Cold War.

Dr. Martino-Taylor told us that specifically, her research identifies a coalition of medical researchers that grew out of the Manhattan Project, which she refers to as the Manhattan-Rochester Coalition.  This coalition conducted various secret radiological tests around the nation.  The group was involved in previously known “injection” and “ingestion” human-subject studies that exposed unwitting victims to radioactive material such as plutonium and strontium-90.  Dr. Martino-Taylor’s research demonstrates that St. Louis open-air dispersion studies carried out in the 1950s and 1960s are likely the realization of this group’s intention to conduct an inhalation study of radiological material in an urban area.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch further said Sunday:  “Martino-Taylor was a skilled researcher before working toward her doctorate, investigating cases for a St. Louis law firm.  The facts she assembled on the military project and conclusions she reached go well beyond anything published earlier.”

Dr. Martino-Taylor told us, “ This new research also reveals that a powdered substance used in the St. Louis tests sometimes identified in military documents, was in part, produced by U.S. Radium.  U.S. Radium is the company infamous for exposure of workers to fatal doses of radioactivity resulting from the use of radioactive zinc sulfide powdered paint.  Many of these workers died from systemic illnesses caused by inhalation of radium dust at U.S. Radium.”

Moreover, there is evidence that the material that was sprayed in St. Louis contained particles of such a size as to result in maximum absorption deep into the lungs.

During the tests, St. Louis residents were told by officials and through media reports that the government was testing a “smoke screen” that might protect the city from aerial observation during attack.  Documents show that the St. Louis tests targeted what was characterized by officials as “a densely populated slum district.”  Census data further shows that areas targeted for spraying included a high percentage of young children, poor, and minority residents.  Areas of the tests included the Desoto-Carr area and the famous Pruitt-Igoe Housing Project, a dense series of high-rise buildings comprised of a majority black population where 70% children were under the age of twelve.

Additional evidence also strongly suggests radiological components to the tests that the Army conducted in St. Louis.

KMOX (CBS) radio reported this morning:  Martino-Taylor says some of the key players in the cover-up were also members of the Manhattan Atomic Bomb Project and involved in other radiological testing across the United States at the time. “This was against all military guidelines of the day, against all ethical guidelines, against all international codes such as the Nuremberg Code.”

Dr. Lisa Martino-Taylor first publicly presented her findings at the International Sociological Association Forum of Sociology Social Justice and Democratization in Buenos Aires, Argentina.  The Forum ran from August 1-4, 2012.

She will be presenting this research for the first time in the U.S. Tuesday, September 25th at a colloquium at St. Louis Community College in St. Louis, MO.

For access to Dr. Martino-Taylor’s doctorate dissertation:

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Filed under Climate Change, Political Repression, Women