Sunday Reads: Lights out, in the city of lights….

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The Eiffel Tower was darkened last night in honor of those killed during Friday’s attacks on Paris.

 

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As you can see, many countries and cities throughout the world took up the cause and brought Paris, city of lights…into their own, by setting their landmarks, arenas, buildings, etc., alight in three colors of “liberté fraternité et égalité.”  Showing support of a city that has been hit by extremist, bloodthirsty, murdering terrorist.

 

Images from this thread:

People Around the Globe Show Their Solidarity With Paris – NBC News

 

Good Late Morning/Early Afternoon

Let us start this post with the current updates on France, in quick link fashion:

Two attackers killed in Paris were Frenchmen who lived in Brussels: prosecutor | French News | Expatica France

Two assailants who died in the Paris attacks were Frenchmen who had lived in Brussels, Belgian prosecutors said Sunday.

The Belgian authorities are holding seven people for questioning in connection with the attacks, and investigators have found that two cars used in the operation were rented in Belgium, they added.

“It appears that two French nationals, who lived in Brussels …, were identified as among the attackers who died on the spot,” the federal prosecutor’s office said in a statement.

“In addition, two cars registered in Belgium were found in Paris, one near the Bataclan and the other near Pere Lachaise,” the statement said.

The Bataclan concert hall is where 89 people were killed, while Pere Lachaise, known for the cemetery where leading literary and other figures are buried, is nearby.

“The investigation shows that the two vehicles were rented at the beginning of the week in the Brussels area,” the statement added.

It said that a total of seven people had been detained for questioning.

French officials: Manhunt in Europe for at least 1 suspect ‘directly involved’ in Paris attacks – The Washington Post

Authorities were scouring Europe on Sunday for at least one other suspect, and possibly two, who were “directly involved” in Friday night’s attacks in Paris, as investigators tried to ascertain whether they were among a number of people arrested over the last 48 hours in Belgium, according to two French officials familiar with the case.

[…]

But police continued searching for at least one other participant in the attacks. French officials and the Islamic State both initially claimed that eight men carried out the attacks. Police said seven attackers died, six of them by detonating suicide vests and one in police gunfire.

There is more at the links of all of these articles…

The Latest: Sunny Skies in Paris; Hearts Full of Grief – The New York Times

PARIS — The latest on the deadly attacks in Paris. (All times local)

The Latest: Officials track passport found by bomber’s body – Houston Chronicle

4:45 p.m.

Balkan authorities are tracking the travels of the owner of a Syrian passport that was found next to a suicide bomber’s body at France’s national stadium on Friday night.

Officials in Greece say the passport’s owner entered the country Oct. 3 through Leros, one of the eastern Aegean islands that tens of thousands of people fleeing war and poverty have been using as a gateway into the 28-nation European Union.

Serbian police say he registered at its border entry with Macedonia on Oct. 7.

Croatian police say he was checked at a refugee center on Oct. 8. Police spokeswoman Helena Biocic said Sunday the man was not flagged as suspicious and continued his journey toward Hungary and Austria.

It is still not yet clear whether the Syrian passport is fake or real, or whether it belonged to the dead bomber. European officials say there is a brisk trade in fake Syrian passports to help people get refugee status in the EU.

I think I will refrain from comment on the passport thing until all the facts are in.  Because the news on this is very fluid:

Two men linked to Paris attacks registered as migrants in Greece: police | French News | Expatica France

Two men who French police are seeking to identify in connection with the Paris attacks registered as migrants with Greek authorities earlier this year, the Greek police confirmed on Saturday.

 

French authorities had asked their Greek counterparts to check a passport and fingerprints of one man who died in the attacks and the fingerprints of another.

Both were thought to have registered in Greece, the main entry point into Europe for Syrian refugees.

At least one Syrian passport was found at the scene of the Stade de France attack.

The Greek minister for citizen protection, Nikos Toskas, said in a statement that one of the men had been registered on the Greek island of Leros in October.

“We confirm that the (Syrian) passport holder came through the Greek island of Leros on October 3 where he was registered under EU rules,” said a statement issued by Toskas.

French police said the passport was found “near the body of one of the attackers” during the investigation into the main attack of Friday’s carnage, at the Bataclan concert hall, where 82 people were killed.

The authenticity of the passport was being checked, but its discovery indicates a possible Syrian connection which has been a working hypothesis for investigators after assailants hit six separate locations in Paris late Friday.

A Greek police source said the second man had also registered in Greece, with TV station Mega adding this was also on Leros in August.

European security officials had long feared that jihadists could take advantage of the mass migration influx, mainly from war-torn Syria, that Europe has been experiencing since the beginning of the year.

“It is clear now that together with the victims of Islamo-fascism in the Middle East that come as refugees, extreme elements are crossing to Europe,” Defence Minister Panos Kammenos after an emergency meeting with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

Greek police are not ruling out that the Syrian passport changed hands before the attacks.

However, a European security expert on Saturday argued: “The most logical assumption is that it’s the same person, sent on a mission to Europe.”

– ‘Unequalled challenge’ –

“If this is established, it would be the first such case. In any event, this proves that the unchecked flow poses an unequalled challenge for European security. We simply don’t know who is coming through,” the expert added.

Greece’s junior minister for migration Yiannis Mouzalas had admitted in September that it would be “foolish” to completely discount the possibility of jihadists sneaking into Europe among the refugee wave.

Over 800,000 people have crossed the Mediterranean to Europe this year, with over 3,400 dying in the process.

But Mouzalas noted that the number of Europeans joining extremist groups in the Middle East was far higher.

The important part to remember here is this…the people, refugees, are fleeing this kind of treatment in their own country.

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Saturday insisted that the refugees fleeing Syria “are hunted by the same terrorists” that struck in Paris on Friday.

“We must find solutions to the drama of the people who leave their homes, hunted by the same terrorists, and drown in the Mediterranean,” Tsipras said in a televised address, after conferring with his police, migration and intelligence chiefs.

But back to the passport thing:

Holder of Syrian passport found in Paris attack was asylum seeker | Reuters

The holder of a Syrian passport found near the body of one of the gunmen who died in Friday night’s attacks in Paris was registered as a refugee in several European countries last month, authorities said.

The man, identified by Serbian authorities only by his initials A.A., came into Europe through the Greek island of Leros, where he was processed on Oct. 3, Greek officials said on Saturday. He was among 70 refugees who arrived on a small vessel from Turkey.

Serbian authorities said on Sunday the same man had been registered at a border crossing from Macedonia into Serbia a few days later.

The information is significant because if one or more of the Paris gunmen turned out to have come into Europe among refugees and migrants fleeing war-torn countries, this could change the political debate about accepting refugees.

“One of the suspected terrorists, A.A., who is of interest to the French security agencies, was registered on the Presevo border crossing on October 7 this year, where he formally sought asylum,” the Serbian interior ministry said in a statement.

“Checks have confirmed that his details match those of the person who on October 3 was identified in Greece. There was no Interpol warrant issued against this person.”

A spokeswoman for the Croatian interior ministry said the man was registered in the country’s Opatovac refugee camp on Oct. 8 and from there he crossed into Hungary and then Austria.

“There was no (police) record about him at the time of registration and there was no reason for us to stop him in any way,” she said.

Austrian Interior Ministry spokesman Karl-Heinz Grundboeck said however the assertion that the suspect attacker had passed through Austria had “no concrete basis.”

“According to the latest information available, that is no more than conjecture and speculation,” he said.

Any identity documents and fingerprint records would have to be matched with the remains of the attackers to establish whether they passed through various countries posing as refugees, or perhaps bought or stole passports along the way.

Greek government sources said a second suspect attacker was also likely to have passed through Greece.

Following the Paris bloodshed, populist leaders around Europe have rushed to demand a halt to an influx of refugees and migrants from the Middle East and Africa. Poland said it could not accept migrants under EU quotas without security guarantees.

Human Rights Watch’s Emergency Director Peter Bouckaert said on Twitter the Syrian passport found may have been fake, adding such fake documents are widely available for sale in Turkey.

“The answer to the Paris attacks and the possibility that one of the attackers came by rubber dinghy to Greece… is not to shut the door on those desperately fleeing war,” he said, calling for Europe to put in place a coherent asylum policy that would both help those on need and address security concerns raised by uncontrolled flows.

“People fleeing war need refuge. And trying to build fences and stopping them at sea only drives them deeper into the hands of criminal gangs, and drives them underground where there is no control over who comes and goes.”

Paris Attacks: What We Know and Don’t Know – The New York Times

Paris attacks highlight France’s gun control problems | World news | The Guardian

No credible threats found in US after Paris attacks as cities step up security | World news | The Guardian

No credible threats found in US after Paris attacks as cities step up security | World news | The Guardian

ECHIDNE OF THE SNAKES: Paris. First Thoughts

Paris. First Thoughts.

Paris bleeds because it is part of a river of blood:  The Russian plane dying in the skies over Egypt, the Hazaras of Afghanistanbeing relieved of their heads, the suicide bombings in a Shiite neighborhood of Beirut, Libanon.Or so the propagandists of Daesh or ISIS or ISIL tell us.  Some of those rivers of blood may be from old rivulets, sourced from old racial hatreds (the Hazara massacre), old religious schisms (the Shias vs. the Sunnis, the Muslims vs. the Christians).  But the Daesh river of blood is real and has not yet been dammed.

And its sources are many.  I read my Twitter feed and was told that everything the deranged god-soldiers of ISIS did was caused by American oil politics and Western colonialism, as if those neo-Salafist clerics who designed ISIS had no agency, no way of choosing another form of rebellion but an extreme life-denying religious one, as if the religion they had created for themselves* from what the Saudi Wahhabism supports and funds in this world**  has played no role.  Instead, millions and millions of westerners are equally to blame, for genetic or historical reasons or at least for not voting various politicians out of power.

I read my Twitter feed and was told that everything the deranged god-soldiers of ISIS did was caused by their religion, that  every single of hundreds of millions of Muslims is just waiting to behead the first infidel they come across.  Once again, as if those neo-Salafist clerics who designed ISIS had no agency, as if millions and millions of Muslims are equally to blame, just because ISIS calls its religion theirs.

And I read my Twitter feed and was told that everything the deranged god-soldiers of ISIS did was caused by western discrimination and racism or by old religious discrimination in various Middle Eastern countries, as if those neo-Salafist clerics who designed ISIS had no agency at all.

Puppets.  ISIS consists of nothing but puppets.  Who holds the strings depends on the tweeter’s own prior beliefs, on whom he or she would wish to blame.  There are even some who believe that US has created ISIS on purpose and funds it!

And what was tweeted on Friday night and later, truly reflected the hobby-horses of various tweeters.  Frank Bruni writes and I concur:

Can’t we wait until we’ve resolved the body count? Until the identities of all of the victims have been determined and their families informed? Until the sirens stop wailing? Until the blood is dry?
Or must we instantly bootstrap obliquely related agendas and utterly unconnected grievances to the carnage in Paris, responding to it with an unsavory opportunism instead of a respectful grief?

Is this the famous death of empathy possibly caused by staring at an inanimate screen while talking to real people?  Is it the masks we wear in cyberspace which allow us to act as if we have mislaid our hearts altogether, as if all that matters is the well-being of whichever group or theory we hold most dearly?  And in counterpoint, is empty sentimentalism or patriotism  the answer we assume if then accused of heartlessness?

It’s as if many in social media forgot about the ones who lost the most in those terrorist attacks, whose lives were prematurely discarded, whose pain served a political function, whose personalities were erased, whose families were left with bleeding wounds, perhaps never to close.  In that they appear in agreement with the Daesh who also regarded the victims as less than nothing:  a bit of filth to be sucked up by the divine vacuum cleaner.

The old customs about the immediate aftermath of death serve a function:  Spend some time thinking about the deceased, give support to the family who is bereaved, sit in silence for a while, offer a cooked dish and offer help.

We don’t really have a cyberspace version of that respect for the individual.  But surely all the different commentators with their pet issues could wait a day or two before forgetting all about the actual human lives which were ended or permanently mutilated by the terrorists?

And from Tom Sullivan at Hullabaloo.

Meanwhile in news outside of Paris:

U.S., allies conduct 18 strikes in Syria, Iraq: military | Reuters

Turkey: Suicide bomber wounds 5 Turkish police during raid | Miami Herald The Police were raiding a suspected Isis safe house.

Labour may back action against Syria without UN approval – Lord Falconer | Politics | The Guardian

This next one is good: Reality check: Number of displaced Syrians in Europe – Al Jazeera English

And again it must be said: Here are 10 of the worst domestic terror attacks by extreme Christians and right-wing white men

What about the debate last night? Here is a series of links that discuss just that:

Who Won the Democratic Presidential Debate in Des Moines? – The Atlantic

The Daily 202: A defensive Hillary Clinton lost last night’s debate – The Washington Post

 If you missed the debate last night, Election 2016: Democratic debate transcript: Clinton, Sanders, O’Malley in Iowa – CBS News

The Second Democratic Debate: What the Candidates Said About Paris and ISIS – The Atlantic

Huckabee: Dems More Interested in Protecting Islam’s Image Than Protecting Americans | Mediaite

I hate Huckabee.

CNN’s take of course: Hillary Clinton doesn’t capitalize on resume at debate – CNNPolitics.com

And this last batch of links are about other things in general…

Disturbing as hell:  CIA Director Documentary: ‘The Attacks Will Be Spectacular’ – POLITICO Magazine

From prison to power: Aung San Suu Kyi, Mandela and others… – BBC News

Baltimore homicides top 300 for year, worst since 1999 | Reuters

Contract calls for anti-abortion group to line up counseling | WISH-TV

Yemen: Travel Ban on Women’s Rights Advocate | Human Rights Watch

Republicans Look for Votes to Defund Planned Parenthood, Repeal Parts of Health Law – WSJ

‘Poverty Pay’ Leads Wal-Mart Employees to Steal Lunches From Co-Workers – Truthdig

And lastly, a link dump about T1D:

Type 1 Diabetes: An Unrelenting Disease – US News

14 realities of having type 1 diabetes in your 20s | BreakingNews.ie

Call For Healthy Eating And Exercise On World Diabetes Day Neglects Innocent Type 1 Patients

So what are you reading about today?

I realize this is a lot of links….take it one at a time. 😉


Friday Nite Lite: # JeSuisCharlie

 

Good Evening

The cartoon post this evening is going to be somber, as you can probably tell it will focus on the terrorist events in France this week.

Before we get to the cartoon tributes, let’s touch on a few things:

First a few quick updates on the news:

French police end twin standoffs, killing Charlie Hebdo terror suspects and an associate – The Washington Post

Paris Massacre Suspects Killed in Dramatic Hostage Raids – NBC News.com

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula member claims group behind Paris terror attack | Fox News

Image for #JeSuisAhmed Reminds Us That A French Muslim Died To Protect Free Speech– HuffPo

And secondly:

The Twitter phenomenon:

 

Look here for the geomap of the twitter hashtag #JeSuisCharlie  at the website | CartoDB it shows a time lapse map of the use of this hashtag over a period of time.

The cartoons that got 12 people killed can be seen here:

These Are The Charlie Hebdo Cartoons That Terrorists Thought Were Worth Killing Over

and here:

4 Cartoonists Killed In Attack On Charlie Hebdo Newspaper

As for the tributes…

On Instagram:

‘Banksy’ Instagram Account Shares Simple But Beautiful Tribute To Charlie Hebdo Cartoonists

UPDATE: Jan. 8 — The image shared on the fake Banksy account in fact belongs to French illustrator Lucille Clerc, who told The Huffington Post via email: “Yes, I can confirm the drawing is mine. Whoever [reposted] this just took my image and added a filter. I didn’t answer as I don’t want it to turn into a polemic, and distract people from the real issues.”

The original “Banksy” Instagram post has since been updated to credit Clerc’s Twitter handle.

You can see more of Clerc’s work here.

Artists Around The World Show They Won’t Be Silenced By Terrorism After Charlie Hebdo Attack

Gunmen stormed the offices of Charlie Hebdo — a satirical newspaper headquartered in Paris — leaving 12 dead Wednesday, including cartoonists Jean “Cabu” Cabut, Georges Wolinski and Bernard Verlhac (also known as Tignous), as well as the publication’s editor/publisher Stéphane “Charb” Charbonnier.

In the immediate aftermath, illustrators and artists around the world were moved to express grief and frustration, showing solidarity with their slain colleagues in political cartoons aimed at defending freedom of speech, while also condemning religious extremism. Many of the visualizations capture the absurdity of the terrorist attack in a universal language — cartoons.

There are a lot of cartoons at that link with translations too.

Newspapers React To Charlie Hebdo Attack With Show Of Solidarity On Front Pages

In London, The Independent had a bold message for the terrorists:

Story continues after image
the independent

That is just one of many, so go and see the others.

Now the cartoons.

There are just so many of these, that I can’t even post all of them. So I will give you the ones I think are the best…hope that you will agree. At the end I’ll post the links to other sites where you can see other cartoons as well…so with that, here we go…

Lalo Alcaraz: Behind His Charlie Hebdo Cartoon That Went Viral – NBC News.com

Charlie Hebdo tribute by Political Cartoonist Dave Granlund

158416 600 Charlie Hebdo tribute cartoons

AAEC – Political Cartoon by MStreeter, Savannah Morning News – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by MStreeter -

Charlie Hebdo – Political Cartoon by Elena Steier, Sickworldjournal.com – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Elena Steier - Charlie Hebdo

French Fries – Political Cartoon by Elena Steier, Sickworldjournal.com – 01/09/2015

Cartoon by Elena Steier - French Fries

Clay Bennett editorial cartoon – Political Cartoon by Clay Bennett, Chattanooga Times Free Press – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Clay Bennett - Clay Bennett editorial cartoon

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Nate Beeler, The Columbus Dispatch – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Nate Beeler -

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Bob Englehart, Hartford Courant – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Bob Englehart -

Je Suis Charlie Hebdo – Political Cartoon by Steve Artley, Artleytoons – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Steve Artley - Je Suis Charlie Hebdo

Satire Solidarity – Political Cartoon by Rob Rogers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Rob Rogers - Satire Solidarity

Charlie Hebdo – Political Cartoon by Rob Rogers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette – 01/09/2015

Cartoon by Rob Rogers - Charlie Hebdo

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Scott Stantis, Chicago Tribune – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Scott Stantis -

Freedom To Express – Political Cartoon by Tim Campbell, Current Publishing – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Tim Campbell - Freedom To Express

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Bado, Le Droit – 01/09/2015

Cartoon by Bado -

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Gustavo Rodriguez, El Nuevo Herald – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Gustavo Rodriguez -

Cartoonist Gary Varvel: Terrorists attack Paris newspaper – Political Cartoon by Gary Varvel, Indianapolis Star – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Gary Varvel - Cartoonist Gary Varvel: Terrorists attack Paris newspaper

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Jimmy Margulies

Cartoon by Jimmy Margulies -

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Signe Wilkinson, Philadelphia Daily News – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Signe Wilkinson -

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Joel Pett, Lexington Herald-Leader – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Joel Pett -

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Kevin Siers, Charlotte Observer – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Kevin Siers -

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Tom Stiglich, MEDIA NEWS GROUP – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Tom Stiglich -

Bruce Plante Cartoon: Massacre in Paris – Political Cartoon by Bruce Plante, Tulsa World – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Bruce Plante - Bruce Plante Cartoon: Massacre in Paris

AAEC – Political Cartoon by John Cole, Scranton Times/Tribune – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by John Cole -

Badges – Political Cartoon by Ed Hall, Artizans Syndicate – 01/09/2015

Cartoon by Ed Hall - Badges

Silent No More by Political Cartoonist Rick McKee

158497 600 Silent No More cartoons

Ink Bottle – Political Cartoon by Adam Zyglis, The Buffalo News – 01/09/2015

Cartoon by Adam Zyglis - Ink Bottle

Regeneration by Political Cartoonist Petar Pismestrovic

158489 600 Regeneration cartoons

je suis charlie by Political Cartoonist Bill Schorr

158483 600 je suis charlie cartoons

Khartoonist by Political Cartoonist Randall Enos

158480 600 Khartoonist cartoons

The Prophet’s face by Political Cartoonist John Cole

158474 600 The Prophets face cartoons

Je Suis Charlie by Political Cartoonist Dry Bones

158470 600 Je Suis Charlie cartoons

Laughing at religion by Political Cartoonist Steve Greenberg

158468 600 Laughing at religion cartoons

Voltaire by Political Cartoonist Milt Priggee

158466 600 Voltaire cartoons

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Lisa Benson, Victor Valley Daily Press – 01/09/2015Cartoon by Lisa Benson -

Charlie Hebdo – Political Cartoon by Mike Keefe, InToon.com – 01/09/2015

Cartoon by Mike Keefe - Charlie Hebdo

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Joe Heller, Green Bay Press-Gazette – 01/09/2015

Cartoon by Joe Heller -

ink tears and blood by Political Cartoonist Hajo de Reijger

158462 600 ink  tears and blood cartoons

je suis charlie – Political Cartoon by Charles Beyl, Lancaster Sunday News – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Charles Beyl - je suis charlie

Muhammad Speaks by Political Cartoonist Monte Wolverton

158447 600 Muhammad Speaks cartoons

Mr. Fish: World Dumbmination – Mr. Fish – Truthdig

Charlie Hebdo by Political Cartoonist Deng Coy Miel

158408 600 Charlie Hebdo cartoons

Radical Islam by Political Cartoonist Steve Sack

158430 600 Radical Islam cartoons

AAEC – Political Cartoon by Ed Gamble, King Features Syndicate – 01/08/2015

Cartoon by Ed Gamble -

Pencil Palisade Charlie Hebdo by Political Cartoonist Riber Hansson

158399 600 Pencil Palisade Charlie Hebdo cartoons

 

Cartoonists and Terrorists by Political Cartoonist Marian Kamensky

158397 600 Cartoonists and Terrorists cartoons

The Mighty Pen by Political Cartoonist Nik Kowsar

158391 600 The Mighty Pen cartoons

war on cartoons by Political Cartoonist Schot

158403 600 war on cartoons cartoons

 

For more cartoons:

AAEC – Political Cartoons

Charlie Hebdo Attack Cartoons

 

This is an open thread.


Forty Years Ago Today, Jim Morrison “Broke on Through to the Other Side”

Forty years ago on June 3, 1971, Jim Morrison, lead singer of The Doors, died in Paris at age 27. He was buried in Pere Lachaise cemetery. Two former members of the band were at the grave site earlier today to mark the occasion.

“James Douglas Morrison, 1943-1971,” reads a plaque on the gravestone erected in the 1990s by the singer-poet’s father, who added a Greek phrase often interpreted as “true to his own spirit”.

Band members Ray Manzarek, the keyboardist, and guitarist Robby Krieger, lit candles at the grave of Morrison, who was known by the nickname the “lizard king”.

Fans of Morrison also paid homage at his grave by leaving flowers there. Some wore black T-shirts with a white drawing of Morrison’s face and the words “40th anniversary.”

I discovered The Doors first album when I was in college in 1967. I had never heard their music and simply bought the record on a whim because I liked the spooky cover art. I went home and put it on my turntable and listened. I was completely blown away. It honestly isn’t over the top to say that the music changed the way I experienced the world. It was that powerful for me.

So here’s to Jim and the great music and performances he shared with us during his brief time on this earth. Here are a couple of my favorites.

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Will 2011 “Rock the World” Like 1968 Did?

Paris, May 1968

For the past few weeks, as the protests in Tunisia spread to Egypt and then to several other countries, I’ve been reminded of the worldwide political uprisings that took place back in 1968, “the year that rocked the world.” Now that we are even seeing Americans protesting in the streets of Madison, Wisconsin and Columbus, Ohio, I wonder: could it happen again?

In case you weren’t around in 1968 or your memory is fuzzy, the Guardian published a summary of some of the events of that unbelievable year back in 2008. Sean O’Hagen describes how in May 1968, Paris

…was paralysed after weeks of student riots followed by a sudden general strike. France’s journey from ‘serenity’ to near revolution in the first few weeks of May is the defining event of ‘1968’, a year in which mass protest erupted across the globe, from Paris to Prague, Mexico City to Madrid, Chicago to London.

[….]

These rebellions were not planned in advance, nor did the rebels share an ideology or goal. The one cause many had in common was opposition to America’s war in Vietnam but they were driven above all by a youthful desire to rebel against all that was outmoded, rigid and authoritarian. At times, they gained a momentum that took even the protagonists by surprise. Such was the case in Paris, which is still regarded as the most mythic near-revolutionary moment of that tumultuous year, but also in Mexico City, Berlin and Rome.

In these cases, what began as a relatively small and contained protest against a university administration – a protest by the young and impatient against the old and unbending – burgeoned into a mass movement against the government. In other countries – like Spain, where the Fascist General Franco was still in power, and Brazil, where a military dictatorship was in place – the protests were directed from the start against the state. In Warsaw and Prague, the freedom movements rose up briefly against the monolithic communist ideology of the USSR. And in America, capitalism was the ultimate enemy, and Vietnam the prime catalyst.

Those protests, along with revolutions in music, art, fashion, and mores truly changed the world. Could it be happening again? Have we really reached a tipping point?

I thought I’d just put up some links to the important events that have taken place today in the many ongoing protests. You can add your own links in the comments (if anyone else is still awake).

More below the fold….

Read the rest of this entry »