Cherokee Nation Helps Launch United Nations’ International Decade Of Indigenous Languages

The Cherokee Nation hosted the launch of the United Nations’ International Decade of Indigenous Languages in Tahlequah last week. The three-day event featured language leaders from around the world, both in person and virtually, to share information and best practices on language preservation efforts.

The 10-year initiative continues the work of the United Nations General Assembly’s 2019 International Year of Indigenous Languages, drawing attention to the critical loss of Indigenous languages and the urgent need to preserve, revitalize and promote them.

Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. opened the event with a welcome, and Special Envoy for International Affairs and Language Preservation Joe Byrd offered a blessing.

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Wisconsin’s Rural Schools In ‘Crisis Mode’

No matter who you ask, whether it’s education association officials, university professors, researchers or the teachers themselves, they’ll all tell you the same thing:

The number one problem facing Wisconsin’s rural school districts is finding — and keeping — enough teachers to teach in those districts.

“The teacher shortage is an issue all across the country,” says Kim Kaukl, who worked for more than 30 years as a school administrator before becoming the executive director of the Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance (WIRSA). “But it’s really exasperated out in the rural areas because of the location of many of our rural districts, especially when you’re trying to attract young people to come out to more remote areas.”

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Iran Official Proposes Formation Of Countries’ Union Against Sanctions

All, with consolidation, should stand against the US sanctions and plots, Rezaei said in a meeting with Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, according to the IRNA Saturday report.

In his remarks, Rezaei said that the Iranian nation and government pay special respect to Nicaragua’s resistance against excessive demands.

He went on to stress that the resistant countries should make further efforts to expand their relations and friendship because the bullying powers, particularly the United States, are after preventing nations’ development and cooperation.

Further, he noted that the Islamic Republic of Iran has stood by Nicaragua and is ready to strengthen ties with it.

For his part, the Nicaraguan president thanked Rezaei for attending his swearing-in ceremony and appreciated the strong spirit of the Islamic Republic against the enemies’ pressures.

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Freedom To Stay, Freedom To Move: An Interview With Harsha Walia

Harsha Walia has been involved in anti-colonial and anti-capitalist migrant justice movements for the past two decades. Her first book, Undoing Border Imperialism, offered a movement analysis of the foundational connections between migration, borders and imperialism, with insights into the grassroots organizing her work comes out of. Building on this, her latest work, Border and Rule offers a crucial resource for going beyond nation-based thinking about border regimes around the world and building an internationalist movement for their abolition.

In Border and Rule, Walia avoids comparisons of one border regime or another as “worse” or “better,” focusing on how borders are consistently a “method of capital” involved in seizing and holding territory and in the segmentation of the working class.

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The Rule Of Law Must Finally Evolve Into The Rule Of Justice

Many politicians, academics, media pundits are wont of invoking the “rule of law”, a “rules-based international order”, “values diplomacy” etc.  But what do all these benevolent-sounding slogans actually mean in practice?  Who makes the rules, who interprets them, who enforces them?  What transparency and accountability accompany these noble pledges?

In a very real sense, we already have a “rules based international order” in the form of the UN Charter and its “supremacy clause”, article 103 of which grants it priority over all other treaties and agreements.  The norms established in the Charter are rational, but effective enforcement mechanisms are yet to be created.

We also have humanistic “values” that should guide diplomacy and peace-making – including the principle “pacta sunt servanda” (treaties must be implemented, art. 26 of the Vienna Convention on the law of treaties). 

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Comparing The COVID-19 Responses In Cuba And The United States

With fundamental differences in health systems structure and organization, as well as in political philosophy and culture, it is not surprising that there are major differences in outcomes. The more coordinated, comprehensive response to COVID-19 in Cuba has resulted in significantly better outcomes compared with the United States. Through July 15, 2021, the US cumulative case rate is more than 4 times higher than Cuba’s, while the death rate and excess death rate are both approximately 12 times higher in the United States. In addition to the large differences in cumulative case and death rates between United States and Cuba, the COVID-19 pandemic has unmasked serious underlying health inequities in the United States.

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The Treaty On The Prohibition Of Nuclear Weapons And The Future

Late January of this year will mark the first anniversary of the entry into force of the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This momentous international agreement, the result of a lengthy struggle by the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) and by many non-nuclear nations, bans developing, testing, producing, acquiring, possessing, stockpiling, and threatening to use nuclear weapons. Adopted by an overwhelming vote of the official representatives of the world’s nations at a UN conference in July 2017, the treaty was subsequently signed by 86 nations. It received the required 50 national ratifications by late October 2020, and, on January 22, 2021, became international law.

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CounterSpin Interview With Craig Aaron On Local Journalism

More than one in five local papers in the US have closed in just the last 15 years or so. And, yes, people are moving away from print as a form. But who is filling the void of regular, relevant, local reporting, informing people at the level at which most people engage?

Activists are tired of lamenting rampant consolidation, and the exclusion of new and diverse voices in news media. They’re working around the country on projects that both demand accountability from existing institutions and envision new systems, new processes, new ways of doing journalism that more accurately reflect and support communities.

We’re joined now by Craig Aaron, co-CEO with Jessica Gonzalez of the group Free Press. He joins us now by phone from Maryland. Welcome back to CounterSpin, Craig Aaron.

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There Really Were Only Two COVID Deaths In Mainland China In 2021

As the Omicron variant causes record levels of infection in the United States, the end of the pandemic seems as far away as ever. But far from preparing a robust response to defeat the virus, the Biden administration is preparing to surrender and encourage the public to “learn to live with” COVID indefinitely.

When the Party for Socialism and Liberation pointed out the fact that China has in fact succeeded at virtually eliminating deaths from the virus, we were attacked by far-right pundits like Ben Shapiro – who took the position that such a feat is essentially impossible and asserted that China’s achievement was just a massive falsification. In the United States, which has seen more deaths from the disease than any other country on Earth, there were 476,863 new deaths in 2021, up from 370,777 in 2020.

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Activists To Delaware Legislators: Sign Green New Year’s Resolutions

Dover, DE – A coalition of progressives and environmental groups are challenging lawmakers to sign on to a set of green New Year’s resolutions to kick off the 2022 session. Says participant Phillip Bannowsky, “this is a way to separate the committed from the compromised.”

The activists claim in their text that confronting the climate crisis “has been impeded by the short-sighted interests of powerful economic players.” Specifically, they call for a Green Amendment to the Delaware Constitution and support current legislation in the pipeline, including HB 259, requiring an emergency alert system to inform citizens when disasters like Croda’s November 25, 2018, toxic leak erupted, which injured workers at their Atlas Point plant as well as neighbors and motorists on the Delaware Memorial Bridge.

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NYC Enacts Law Allowing Over 800,000 Immigrants To Vote In Local Elections

A New York City law granting more than 800,000 lawful permanent residents the right to vote in local elections took effect Sunday after the recently elected mayor, Democrat Eric Adams, declined to veto it.

The New York City Council had voted 33-14—with two abstentions—for the measure to allow noncitizens who have resided in the city for at least 30 days to vote for mayor, council members, and other municipal offices beginning next year.

“The New York City Council is making history,” declared Ydanis Rodríguez, the former council member who sponsored the bill, last month. “New York City must be seen as a shining example for other progressive cities to follow.”

Rodríguez—an immigrant and naturalized citizen from the Dominican Republic who is now the city’s Department of Transportation commissioner—added Sunday that “we build a stronger democracy when we include the voices of immigrants.”

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When To Build Sea Walls

During the month of December 2021 two warnings of impending sea level rise were issued by highly respected groups of climate scientists. These are professional scientists who do not deal in hyperbole. Rather, they are archetypical conservative serious-minded scientists who follow the facts.

The most recent warning on December 30th is of deteriorating conditions at the Arctic and Greenland. The second warning is the threatening collapse in Antarctica of one of the largest glaciers in the world. As these events unfortunately coincide so close together, one at the top of the world, the other at the bottom, should coastal cities plan to build sea walls?

The scale of time and material and costs to build seawalls is nearly overwhelming. In fact, it is overwhelming.

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2022 Brings Hope For State And Local Broadband Progress

If 2020 convinced the country that broadband for all Americans is essential, then 2021 underscored a reality of life: Goals often require longer timelines than we’d prefer. To put it another way, a worldwide emergency helped the U.S. recognize the importance of having ubiquitous high-speed Internet, and now we’re playing catch-up. There’s no quick and clean fix, which is a clunky pill to swallow for millions of people who contend with substandard or nonexistent connectivity as a new world of hybrid education, remote work, online services and telehealth takes over.

The urgency for wider access to high-speed Internet has been palpable this year. The federal government has ramped up its focus on the issue.

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Proposal Would Create Alert System For Missing Indigenous People

A bill proposed in Olympia would create an alert system for missing and murdered Indigenous women and people, the first of its kind in Washington and the United States.

House Bill 1725 would create an alert to help identify and locate missing Indigenous women and people. Similar to “silver alerts” for missing vulnerable adults, it would broadcast information about missing Indigenous people on message signs and in highway advisory radio messages when activated, as well as through news releases to local and regional media, according to a news release from state Attorney General Bob Ferguson.

It would be the first alert system specifically for missing and murdered Indigenous women and people in the country, the news release said.

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Cuba Remembers First Tricontinental Anti-Imperialist Conference

On Monday, progressive organizations celebrate the 56th anniversary of the First Tricontinental Conference, which gathered 500 delegates from Africa, Asia, and Latin America in Havana to adopt policies to strengthen the fight against imperialism and neo-colonialism.

“This event was an exercise in diplomatic cooperation between anti-hegemonic forces of different origins that advocated peace and the self-determination of peoples,” German intellectual Jennifer Hosek stressed.

Besides discussing the imperialism’s smear campaigns against social revolutions, delegates founded the Peoples of Asia, Africa, and Latin America Solidarity Organization (OSPAAAL) to support countries that had recently liberated themselves from colonialism.

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