jueves, marzo 31, 2011

Organic vindicated, again


Rodale data show organic just as productive, better at building soil

by Tom Philpott

Organic agriculture is a fine luxury for the rich, but it could never feed the world as global population moves to 9 billion.

That's what a lot of powerful people -- including the editors of The Economist -- insist, but the truth could well be the opposite: it might be chemical-intensive agriculture that's the frivolous luxury, and organic that offers us the right technologies in a resource-constrained, ever-warmer near future.

That's the conclusion I draw from the latest data of the Pennsylvania-based Rodale Institute's Farming Systems Trial (FST), which Rodale calls "America's longest running, side-by-side comparison of conventional and organic agriculture." Now, Rodale promotes organic ag, so industrial-minded critics will be tempted to dismiss its data. But that would be wrong -- its test plots have an excellent reputation in the ag research community, and the Institute often collaborates with the USDA's Agricultural Research Service.

Housed on Rodale's 330 acre farm, the FST compares three systems for growing corn and soy, the first two organic and the third conventional: 1) one based on rotating feed crops with perennial forage crops for cows, and fertilizing with manure; 2) another based on rotating grains with cover crops, with fertility coming from nitrogen-fixing legumes; and 3) a system reliant on synthetic fertilizers and pesticides.

Corn comparison.Corn in the organic-legume (left) and conventional (right) system during the dry summer of 1995. Both were planted on the same day, with the same variety but only the conventional corn is showing signs of water stress. Organic corn yields that year were 29 percent higher than those of the conventional corn.Photo and caption: Rodale Institute

Rodale's researchers have been comparing crop yields and taking soil samples on these test plots for 27 years. Their latest findings? The three systems have produced equivalent corn yields over the years, while "soybean yields were the same for the manure and conventional system and only slightly lower for the legume system."

So the old canard about how organic ag produces dramatically less food than chemical ag has been debunked, yet again.

Etiquetas: , , , ,

miércoles, marzo 30, 2011

Weinberg on WBAI's downfall


J'accuse! The Betrayal of WBAI

A Statement of Continued Resistance by the Moorish Orthodox Radio Crusade —in Exile
"Freedom of the press, if it means anything at all, means the freedom to criticize and oppose."
— George Orwell
"You have the right to free speech... As long as you're not dumb enough to actually try it."
— The Clash
"And still it moves."
— Galileo, upon his excommunication for asserting that the Earth moves around the Sun

After more than 20 years on the airwaves of WBAI-New York, the Moorish Orthodox Radio Crusade was officially cancelled the day after my last broadcast of March 15. This was explicitly presented as a result of my relentless criticisms in recent weeks of the station's direction, and specifically of my attacks on "other producers." I will here answer these charges, and demonstrate how the show's cancellation is illegitimate. But first I will make the obvious point that this episode clearly exposes the lie that there is no "gag rule" at Pacifica Radio's WBAI.


Gary Null The content of the premiums, however, is a more fundamental issue. One of the few positive moves taken by the previous management at WBAI was the sacking of "health" guru Gary Null, who has become a mini-mogul by marketing dubious products ("Gary's Green Stuff," "Gary's Red Stuff") and hubristic claims ("reversing the aging process"). Ironically, Null's return to WBAI comes on the heels of his hospitalization last year for taking one of his own products—an "Ultimate Power Meal," which he claims the manufacturer spiked with more vitamin D than his formula called for. This explanation begs the question of whether Null's own formula was safe. More to the point, the notion that we can maintain good health through purchasing such sexily-dubbed industrial products rather than simply eating right is a reversal of everything good that came out of the "natural foods" movement.

Null is also notorious as an HIV-AIDS denialist, for which ACT UP-New York had petitioned the station not to return him to the air.

I do not take calling out other producers by name lightly. Gary Null, however, does not even come into BAI, but produces his show remotely; he is nationally syndicated on several other stations across the country; and his recent return to BAI is another embarrassment. Further, he is exploiting WBAI to build his commercial empire, much as he exploits the gullible and ill who purchase his products. I do not consider him a legitimate producer.

Right-wing Trajectory

Milton Friedman In my final broadcasts, in addition to directly taking on Gary Null, I also explicitly criticized the "Zeitgeist" film series by director Peter Joseph—the latest entry in creepily fascistic conspiracy potboilers aggressively promoted by WBAI. This admittedly isn't quite as bad as David Icke (reptilian overlords are a tough act to beat), but probably worse than many similar such offerings in recent years—such as the endless 9-11 pseudo-dissections; or The Money Masters, a turn on the old banking-conspiracy trope with a special endorsement from Milton Friedman, whose free-market doctrines were famously emulated by Chile's fascist dictator Augusto Pinochet.

The oddly named "Zeitgeist" series, in addition to recycling specious theories about 9-11 and hegemonic world conspiracies dating back to biblical times, also appears to promote more sinister and openly right-wing fantasies. (No, I am not going to waste my time watching it, but this is clear from its website and Wikipedia page, which can presumably be considered reliable in this instance.) Among these is the "North American Union" hallucination —the notion that NAFTA was the first step towards a European-style monetary union and dropping of border controls between the US and Mexico. There is not a shred of evidence to suggest that this exists, of course; in fact, the US is notoriously building a security wall on the Mexican border! One would think (or hope) that most WBAI listeners would support a loosening of border controls in the Southwest.

Where does this idea come from? The first promoters seem to have been the John Birch Society, the radical fringe of Cold War anti-communism. Phyllis Schlafly With the demise of the Soviet bloc, they had to find a new enemy, and appear to have hatched this theory to exploit anti-immigrant xenophobia just as they once exploited anti-communist Russophobia. Others to tilt at this windmill include Phyllis Schlafly's Eagle Forum and self-styled "Stop the North American Union" mouthpiece Daneen G. Peterson, who luridly warns of an imminent "overwhelming human tsunami of illegal aliens."

What the hell is WBAI doing in this company?

I will be told that the NAU theory is only mentioned in one of the Zeitgeist trilogy, and not the most recent which BAI was aggressively pitching in the last fund drive. I am not impressed. Unless the Zeitgeist producers have clearly repudiated the NAU trope, it remains a part of their (using the word properly, for a change) zeitgeist. Furthermore, I understand that BAI was offering the complete trilogy as a premium package.

Etiquetas: , , ,

martes, marzo 29, 2011

Can the US feed China (¿Y el rol de América Latina?)

Este informe, aunque muy util, pasa por alto el importantisimo rol de América Latina en facilitar el crecimiento desbocado y explosivo de la economía china. Los chinos no pudieron hacer lo que han hecho si no fuera por un flujo constante de materias primas de Suramérica, especialmente petróleo y soya.

Para mas informaci
ón: http://carmeloruiz.blogspot.com/search/label/China



By Lester R. Brown Earth Policy Release
Plan B Update
March 23, 2011

In 1994, I wrote an article in World Watch magazine entitled “Who Will Feed China?” that was later expanded into a book of the same title. When the article was published in late August, the press conference generated only moderate coverage. But when it was reprinted that weekend on the front of the Washington Post’s Outlook section with the title “How China Could Starve the World,” it unleashed a political firestorm in Beijing.

The response began with a press conference at the Ministry of Agriculture on Monday morning, where Deputy Minister Wan Baorui denounced the study. Advancing technology, he said, would enable the Chinese people to feed themselves. This was followed by a government-orchestrated stream of articles that challenged my findings.

The strong reaction surprised me. In retrospect, although I had followed closely the Great Famine of 1959–61, during which some 30 million people starved to death, I had not fully appreciated the psychological scars it left. The leaders in Beijing are survivors of that famine. As a result of that traumatic experience, no leader could acknowledge that China might one day have to import much of its food. China, they said, had always fed itself, and it always would.

As party leaders assessed the situation, they decided to launch an all-out effort to maintain grain self-sufficiency. The government quickly adopted several key production-boosting measures, including a 40 percent rise in the grain support price paid to farmers, an increase in agricultural credit, and heavy investment in developing higher-yielding strains of wheat, rice, and corn, their leading crops.

They offset cropland losses in the fast-industrializing coastal provinces by plowing grasslands in the northwestern provinces, a measure that contributed to the emergence of the country’s massive dust bowl. In addition to overplowing, they expanded irrigation by overpumping aquifers.

Lastly, the Party made a conscious decision to abandon self-sufficiency in soybeans and concentrate their agricultural resources on remaining self-sufficient in grain. The effect of neglecting the soybean in the country where it originated was dramatic. In 1995 China produced and consumed nearly 14 million tons of soybeans. In 2010 it was still producing only 14 million tons—but it consumed nearly 70 million tons, most of it to supplement grain in livestock and poultry rations. China now imports four-fifths of its soybeans.

China’s decision to import vast quantities of soybeans led to a restructuring of agriculture in the western hemisphere, the only region that could respond to such a massive demand. The United States now has more land in soybeans than in wheat. Brazil has more land in soybeans than in all grains combined. Argentina, with twice as much land in soybeans as in grain, is fast becoming a soybean monoculture. For the hemisphere as a whole, there is now more land in soybeans than in either wheat or corn.

The United States, Brazil, and Argentina—the big three soybean producers—now account for more than 80 percent of the world harvest and nearly 90 percent of soybean exports. Nearly 60 percent of world soybean exports go to China.

Despite China’s herculean efforts to expand grain output, several trends are now converging that make it harder to do so. Some, like soil erosion, are longstanding. The pumping capacity to deplete aquifers has emerged only in recent decades. The extraordinary growth in China’s automobile fleet and the associated paving of land have come only in the last several years.

Overplowing and overgrazing are creating a huge dust bowl in northern and western China. The numerous dust storms originating in the region each year in late winter and early spring are now regularly recorded on satellite images. For instance, on March 20, 2010, a suffocating dust storm enveloped Beijing, prompting the city’s weather bureau to warn that air quality was hazardous, urging people to stay inside or to cover their faces when outdoors. Visibility was low, forcing motorists to drive with lights on in daytime.

Beijing was not the only area affected. This particular dust storm engulfed scores of cities in five provinces, directly affecting over 250 million people. And it was not an isolated incident. In early spring, residents of eastern China hunker down as the dust storm season begins. Along with the difficulty in breathing and the dust that stings the eyes, people face a constant struggle to keep dust out of homes and to clear doorways and sidewalks of dust and sand. But the farmers and herders in the vast northwest, whose livelihoods are blowing away, are paying a far higher price.

Wang Tao, one of the world’s leading desert scholars, reports that from 1950 to 1975 an average of 600 square miles of land in China’s north and west turned to desert each year. By the turn of the century, nearly 1,400 square miles of land was going to desert annually. The trend is clear.

China is now at war. It is not invading armies that are claiming its territory, but expanding deserts. Old deserts are advancing and new ones are forming like guerrilla forces striking unexpectedly, forcing Beijing to fight on several fronts. And in this war with the deserts, China is losing.

A U.S. Embassy report entitled “Desert Mergers and Acquisitions” describes satellite images showing two deserts in north-central China expanding and merging to form a single, larger desert overlapping Inner Mongolia and Gansu Provinces. To the west in Xinjiang Province, two even larger deserts—the Taklimakan and Kumtag—are also heading for a merger. Highways running through the shrinking region between them are regularly inundated by sand dunes.

An estimated 24,000 villages in northwestern China have been totally or partially abandoned since 1950 as sand dunes encroach on cropland, forcing farmers to leave. Unlike the U.S. Dust Bowl of the 1930s, when many farmers in the Great Plains migrated to California, China’s “Okies” do not have a West Coast to migrate to. They are moving to already heavily populated eastern cities.

Overpumping, like overplowing, is also taking a toll. As the demand for food in China has soared, millions of Chinese farmers have drilled irrigation wells to expand their harvests. As a result, water tables are falling and wells are starting to go dry under the North China Plain, which produces half of China’s wheat and a third of its corn. The overpumping of aquifers for irrigation temporarily inflates food production, creating a food production bubble that eventually bursts when the aquifer is depleted. Earth Policy Institute estimates that some 130 million Chinese are being fed with grain produced by overpumping—by definition, a short term phenomenon.

In a 2010 interview with Washington Post reporter Steve Mufson, Chinese groundwater expert He Qingcheng noted that underground water now meets three fourths of Beijing’s water needs. The city, he said, is drilling 1,000 feet down to reach water—five times deeper than 20 years ago. He notes that as the deep aquifer under the North China Plain is depleted, the region is losing its last water reserve—its only safety cushion. His concerns are mirrored in the unusually strong language of a World Bank report on China’s water situation that foresees “catastrophic consequences for future generations” unless water use and supply can quickly be brought back into balance.

At the same time, China is losing cropland to residential and industrial construction, and to paving land for cars as their numbers multiply at a staggering rate. In 2009, vehicle sales totaled 14 million, surpassing those in the United States for the first time. In 2010, sales jumped to 18 million, and in 2011 they are projected to reach 20 million, the highest ever for any country. Adding 20 million cars to the fleet means paving one million acres for roads, highways, and parking lots. Cars are now competing with farmers for cropland in China.

Rural China is also facing a tightening labor supply. As industrial wages rise, it becomes more difficult to find young people to work at low-return jobs in rural areas. Marginal cropland and smaller plots, no longer economical, are abandoned. As the rural labor supply shrinks, so does the potential for labor-intensive double-cropping (such as planting winter wheat and then corn as a summer crop in the north or producing two rice crops per year in the south), a practice that has dramatically expanded China’s grain production.

As all these trends converge, China’s food supply is tightening. In November 2010, the food price index was up a politically dangerous 12 percent over a year earlier. Now after 15 years of near self-sufficiency in grain, it seems likely that China soon will turn to the world market for massive grain imports, as it already has done for 80 percent of its soybeans.

How much grain will China import? How will it compare with their soybean imports? No one knows for sure, but if China were to import only 20 percent of its grain, it would need 80 million tons, an amount only slightly less than the 90 million tons of grain the United States exports to all countries each year. This would put heavy additional pressure on scarce exportable supplies of wheat and corn.

For China, the handwriting is on the wall. It will almost certainly have to turn to the outside world for grain to avoid politically destabilizing food price rises. To import massive quantities of grain, China will necessarily draw heavily on the United States, far and away the world’s largest grain exporter. To be dependent on imported grain, much of it from the United States, will be China’s worst nightmare come true.

For U.S. consumers, China’s worst nightmare could become ours. If China enters the U.S. grain market big time, as now seems inevitable, American consumers will find themselves competing with 1.4 billion Chinese consumers with fast-rising incomes for the U.S. grain harvest, driving up food prices.

This would raise prices not only of the products made directly from grain, such as bread, pasta, and breakfast cereals, but also of meat, milk, and eggs, which require much larger quantities of grain to produce. If China were to import even one fifth of its grain, there would likely be pressure from U.S. consumers to restrict or to ban exports to China, as the United States did in the 1970s, when it banned soybean exports to Japan.

But in dealing with China, the United States now faces a very different situation. When the U.S. Treasury Department auctions off securities every month to finance the U.S. fiscal deficit, China has been a major buyer. It holds over $900 billion worth of U.S. Treasury securities. China is our banker. In another time, another age, the United States could restrict access to U.S. grain as it did in the 1970s, but with China today this may not be possible.

For Americans, who live in a country that has been the world’s breadbasket for more than half a century, a country that has never known food shortages or runaway food prices, the world is about to change. Like it or not, we are going to be sharing our grain harvest with the Chinese, no matter how much it raises our food prices.

*NOTE: An abridged version of this piece appeared in the Washington Post‘s Outlook section on March 13, 2011.

# # #

Lester Brown is President of the Earth Policy Institute and author of the
newly published book World on the Edge.

Additional data and information sources at www.earth-policy.org

Etiquetas: , , , , ,

domingo, marzo 27, 2011

Vermont goes single payer?

I lived in Vermont for several years in the 1990's, I'm proud to say. Go Vermont, GO!

Could the Green Mountain state be the first in the country to offer accessible healthcare to all its citizens?

Etiquetas: , , ,

sábado, marzo 26, 2011

Stop corporate tax dodging!


Nearly 19,000 global corporations have a mail drop at Ugland House, a single building in the Cayman Islands. Ugland House is the legal address of these overseas corporate subsidiaries, many set up for the purposes of avoiding taxes.

Irresponsible politicians have drained state and federal budgets by giving corporations huge tax breaks and allowing them to dodge taxes through overseas tax havens.
Most of us pay more in taxes than many U.S. corporations, and corporate tax avoidance has increased dramatically in the last 50 years.
    • Tax havens punish responsible businesses that have to compete unfairly against tax dodgers. A domestic U.S. business that pays its taxes is at an unfair disadvantage with multi-corporations that game the system and shift profits to low or no tax havens. A new coalition has formed called "Business and Investors Against Tax Haven Abuse."

Etiquetas: , ,

Taking on the oil speculators

"As long as the CFTC has the power to ease gas prices by reining in oil speculation, we must let the commissioners know that they have our attention, and that their inaction is an astonishing breach of their duties."
The Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has the power to rein in rampant oil speculators, but conservative commissioners are dragging their feet. Tell the CFTC to take action now!

Etiquetas: , , , ,



Why Aren’t Japanese and American Citizens Getting All the Facts? “Extreme” Step Seen As Indication of Much Higher Radiation Levels Than Revealed So Far by NRC, Japanese Government

WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 25, 2011 – Three groups -- Friends of the Earth (FOE), the Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) and Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) – announced today that they have filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to get to the bottom of what led the U.S. government to call for a 50-mile evacuation radius for Americans near the Japanese reactor crisis in Fukushima.

The FOIA requests filed with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) are available online at http://foe.org/sites/default/files/FOE-NIRS-PSR-RadiationFOIA-3-22-11.pdf . The three groups are not satisfied that the incomplete summary provided so far by the DOE at http://www.energy.gov/news/10194.htm provides the full picture of the scale of the radiation.

On March 16, 2011, NRC Commissioner Gregory B. Jazcko told Congress that he was recommending the 50-mile evacuation radius. (See http://www.nrc.gov/about-nrc/organization/commission/comm-gregory-jaczko....) The scope of the recommended evacuation is highly unusual and suggestive of extraordinarily high radiation levels in excess of those reported to the public in Japan and the U.S., the three groups said. In the U.S., nuclear reactor licensees and local governments are only asked to provide for evacuation out to 10 miles.

As concerns grow about food and water contamination in Japan, the three groups filing the FOIA request are seeking to determine the answer to this key question: What made Jaczko exceed the limits of his own agency’s regulations by five times?

Tom Clements, Southeastern nuclear campaign coordinator, Friends of the Earth, said: “The radiation monitoring information being collected by the U.S. Government in Japan is of urgent interest to the public in the U.S. and internationally and we expect an expedited response to the FOIA request. If the full data set is not immediately released, the government can rightly be accused of attempting to cover up the radiation threat posed by the disaster. This would severely undermine regulators’ credibility.”

Michael Mariotte, executive director, Nuclear Information and Resource Service, Takoma Park, MD., said: “By recommending a 50-mile evacuation zone for U.S. residents, NRC Chairman Jaczko gave a strong signal that the Fukushima accident was much worse than reported by the Japanese government and the utility. We believe that he was getting information about the severity of the accident from airborne radiation measurements taken by U.S. Department of Energy aircraft. But neither DOE nor the NRC has published those measurements in full.”

Attorney Diane Curran of Harmon, Curran, Spielberg & Eisenberg, LLP, who filed the FOIA request for the groups, said: “We think the American and Japanese public have a right to see the complete details of the Fukushima radiation data and, therefore, we have requested the NRC and the DOE to release the information under the Freedom of Information Act. If necessary, we are prepared to go to federal court to get the uncensored set of measurements.”

As the FOIA request explains, the three groups “seek expedited release” of the requested information, “so that they may timely inform their members and the general public about the unfolding events at the Fukushima reactors, including the significance of the public health and environmental threat posed by radiation releases from the Fukushima reactors. Requesters believe that requested disclosures will do a great deal to fill currently existing information gaps and resolve inconsistencies in the currently available reports about the severity of the Japanese radiological releases.”

The groups also contend that expedited release of the information is justified in order to allow them to participate in and comment on any proceedings the federal government may undertake to evaluate the lessons learned from the Fukushima accident, including the 90-day review of the safety of U.S. reactors recently announced by the NRC. According to the FOIA request letter, a better understanding of the severity of the Fukushima releases is “essential to Requesters’ ability to evaluate and participate in any such review.”

MEDIA CONTACTS: Leslie Anderson, (703) 276-3256 or landerson@hastingsgroup.com

Etiquetas: , , ,

viernes, marzo 25, 2011

Esther Vivas: Crisis alimentaria de nuevo

"Mientras la agricultura y la alimentación sigan siendo consideradas una mercancía en manos del mejor postor, y los intereses empresariales prevalezcan por encima de las necesidades alimentarias y los límites del planeta, nuestra seguridad alimentaria y el bienestar de la tierra no estarán garantizados."
La especulación alimentaria y la 'petrodependencia' como detonantes La amenaza de una nueva crisis alimentaria es ya una realidad.

Etiquetas: , ,

Paradojas de Evo

Archivo:Bolivia rel93.jpg


Paradojas de la crisis hegemónica del nacionalismo de Evo

Pablo A. Regalsky *

En este corto ensayo me propongo presentar brevemente las posibles conexiones entre los procesos de globalización, de crisis hegemónica, de crisis civilizacional y ecológica, con relación a la construcción –o, al menos el discurso de construcción- de estado-nación por parte de los gobiernos del “socialismo del siglo XXI”. Cómo se relacionan esas tendencias globales en esta coyuntura con la actuación de los movimientos sociales, en particular los movimientos indígenas, en busca de una alternativa. Pretendo encontrar a través de este examen de la situación una explicación para entender las contradicciones que envuelven al gobierno de Morales, etiquetado como gobierno indígena, y las consecuencias paradójicas que han sufrido los movimientos indígenas como consecuencia de su triunfo electoral.

La popularidad internacional de Evo Morales creció con su denuncia al capitalismo mundial, exponiendo la crisis mundial catastrófica a la cual el modelo industrialista nos condena. Siendo uno de los cuatro gobiernos que denunciaron los acuerdos sobre cambio climático de Copenhagen, en diciembre de 2010 fue el único que no avaló el último acuerdo en Cancún, impidiendo que se convierta en una resolución de consenso. Después de Copenhagen, el gobierno boliviano convocó conjuntamente con las principales organizaciones campesinas a un Encuentro mundial en abril de 2010 para denunciar esos acuerdos y formular una alternativa desde un concepto civilizatorio basado en la conciencia indígena de respeto a la Tierra. De allí salió la declaración de Tiquipaya que entre otros puntos hace el siguiente señalamiento:

“El agro-negocio a través de su modelo social, económico y cultural de producción capitalista globalizada y su lógica de producción de alimentos para el mercado y no para cumplir con el derecho a la alimentación, es una de las causas principales del cambio climático. Sus herramientas tecnológicas, comerciales y políticas no hacen más que profundizar la crisis climática e incrementar el hambre en el planeta… Al mismo tiempo denunciamos cómo este modelo capitalista impone megaproyectos de infraestructura, invade territorios con proyectos extractivistas, privatiza y mercantiliza el agua y militariza los territorios expulsando a los pueblos indígenas y campesinos de sus territorios, impidiendo la soberanía alimentaria y profundizando la crisis socioambiental”.

Al mismo tiempo que impulsaba esta clara declaración, dirigida a impactar sobre las negociaciones de Cancún, el gobierno boliviano paradójicamente se opuso a que en el encuentro de Tiquipaya las organizaciones indígenas discutieran las formas de impedir que ese modelo siguiera haciendo estragos en Bolivia. Pese a esa prohibición y a ciertas amenazas, algunas organizaciones lograron montar la Mesa 18 cerca de la entrada al evento oficial. Esa mesa emitió un comunicado en el que resalta lo siguiente:

“La Mesa Nº 18 se constituyó como un espacio necesario de reflexión y denuncia en el marco de la Conferencia Mundial de los Pueblos sobre el Cambio Climático y los Derechos de la Madre Tierra, a fin de profundizar la lectura sobre los efectos locales del capitalismo industrial global. Asumimos la responsabilidad de cuestionar a los regímenes latinoamericanos denominados populares y a la lógica depredadora y consumista, la lógica de la muerte del desarrollismo y del neo extractivismo…para enfrentar el cambio climático la humanidad debe encontrarse con sus raíces culturales colectivas comunitarias; eso significa construir una sociedad basada en la propiedad colectiva y en el manejo comunitario y racional de los recursos naturales, en la cual los pueblos decidan de manera directa el destino de la riqueza natural de acuerdo a sus estructuras organizativas, a su autodeterminación, sus normas y procedimientos propios y su visión de manejo integral de sus territorios.” [1]

Evo no solo ha cedido ante las presiones de las multinacionales, especialmente Petrobras, que tienen el control de la extracción y comercialización de gas y petróleo sino que, mientras él denuncia el capitalismo global, a la vez promueve el mismo modelo depredador incentivando y protegiendo las inversiones del capital multinacional extractivo en la propia Bolivia. Los derechos colectivos indígenas reconocidos en la nueva constitución (como parte de un supuesto estado plurinacional) son desconocidos en nombre de los intereses de la nación boliviana.

Sin embargo, la “reconstrucción” y “fortalecimiento” del estado-nación no resulta ser una alternativa frente a la presión del capitalismo. El resultado no se ha hecho esperar: las masas, incluso sus propias bases cocaleras, ya están haciendo sentir su impaciencia y en el Alto, durante la movilización de Año Nuevo han cantado: “Anulas el decreto [de aumento de gasolina] o te sacamos Evo”.

“¿Cómo? ¿Acaso no habían nacionalizado?” Esa fue la reacción de un representante de una comunidad campesina en Cochabamba ante la explicación que daba el dirigente de la Federación acerca de la intención del gobierno boliviano de aumentar el impuesto al consumidor sobre la gasolina en Navidad del 2010, para duplicar el monto que se paga a las multinacionales petroleras por cada barril que extraen en el país.

Parece esquemático y exagerado decir que estamos aquí ante un proceso acelerado de burocratización que recuerda ciertas facetas del desarrollo del estalinismo, sin embargo no encuentro otra figura que sintetice mejor y en pocas palabras la dinámica actual político-gubernamental. Esa dinámica de reproducción del estado burgués-colonial (o colonial-burgués) a la cual responde el MAS no surge simplemente de una lógica impuesta “desde arriba” y desde las fuerzas actuantes del mercado mundial, sino que, llamativamente, responde también a procesos de reproducción que surgen “desde abajo”, desde ciertas lógicas y estrategias populares, todo lo cual permitiría sacar algunas enseñanzas con las cuales quizás entender por dónde pasaría la alternativa. Pero a la vez, Evo no puede ni soñar con emular el largo reinado stalinista. Los movimientos populares bolivianos no han sido derrotados, sólo han quedado confundidos.

Tengo que ser claro al referirme a la confusión: la nebulosa que envuelve a los intelectuales desde los años 80 por supuesto también me incluye. Agradezco a Herramienta y aprovecho esta oportunidad que propone para la elaboración y la discusión sobre los acontecimientos de la última década para poner estos sucesos en un marco global. Pero estos acontecimientos no solo deberían verse desde una perspectiva objetivista, sino tratando de poner en acto lo que Bourdieu (2003) denomina la “objetivación participante”[2], es decir, el análisis de la posición desde la cual cada uno de nosotros “escribe”. Más allá de mi intención de introducir aquí algunas cuestiones que quizás ya estén suficientemente claras sobre lo que está pasando en Bolivia, e incorporar algún conocimiento logrado en mi experiencia aquí que contribuya a la discusión sobre “el” proyecto revolucionario, reconocer la nebulosa que altera nuestras conciencias ante las paradojas que aparecen en este momento de crisis generalizada es una condición para poder avanzar. De lo contrario vamos a terminar como García Linera, declarándose “bolchevique” al tiempo que se funcionaliza al estado-nación colonial[3].


Esta es la lucha que se está librando bajo el gobierno de Evo Morales. No se trata sólo de si la llamada “nacionalización” y si la alegada reconstrucción del estado-nación son verídicos o se trata solo de recursos discursivos. La lucha de fondo es por el control del territorio: se trata de una lucha del estado por imponer el monopolio sobre el territorio y sus recursos, que es una expresión más del famoso monopolio sobre el uso legítimo de la violencia. En este caso, el monopolio del ejercicio de la violencia se traduce en la imposición del control estatal sobre los recursos comunales, expropiándolos y destruyendo las condiciones de existencia y reproducción de la comunidad.

En esto el gobierno de Evo Morales está tratando de cumplir la meta histórica del estado repúblicano burgués, una meta que ningún gobierno burgués ha logrado desde la misma creación del estado-nación y el tema de fondo que desencadenó la guerra del agua en el año 2000. Pero además, esa expropiación del derecho colectivo por parte del estado, conculcando un derecho consagrado por el uso continuado de un pueblo indígena sobre su territorio, se realiza en beneficio no del pueblo boliviano, sino en beneficio de empresas multinacionales, entre las cuales destaca la Petrobrás. Precisamente a estos derechos colectivos es a lo que se refiere la Declaración de la Mesa 18, de la cual transcribimos parte al comienzo del artículo y que denuncia a los gobiernos denominados populares por ser igualmente agentes del modelo extractivista y depredador que ha causado el cambio climático.

Lo que se juega en el movimiento contra el alza del precio de la gasolina a finales del 2010, no es solamente el derecho de la gente a defender su nivel de vida, amenazado por el aumento del precio de los combustibles y la inflación generalizada que eso acarrea. Ese derecho es vital, ya que es lo que permite el frente unido del campo y la ciudad. Sin embargo lo que discurre por debajo de la lucha por el precio de la gasolina es la tensión por el control del territorio y sus recursos. El estado, que mantiene su carácter colonial en alianza con el capital multinacional pese al cambio de discurso, será el que gane el control? O serán los sujetos colectivos, los pueblos indígenas en alianza con los sectores populares urbanos los que logren defender la democracia del autogobierno y el control sobre los recursos que se requieren en defensa de la vida. Por supuesto que la discusión sobre la viabilidad de una propuesta de “etnodesarrollo” basada en el control de los colectivos indígenas sobre sus territorios como alternativa al capitalismo depredador, es un tema demasiado complejo como para tratar en el reducido espacio de este artículo donde simplemente pretendo posicionar los procesos que se dan en Bolivia como la expresión de la crisis global a la que nos ha conducido el capitalismo.

Lo que esta década nos deja como lección, partiendo de la guerra del agua y pasando por los movimientos sociales en Argentina del 2001, es la imposibilidad de resolver la crisis sin contar con la más absoluta claridad sobre la cuestión del estado-nación burgués como activo agente de reproducción del mercado mundial capitalista y por lo tanto como gestor del proceso civilizatorio de occidente que hoy está en crisis. Como tal, ese estado-nación burgués cuya hegemonía está en cuestión en términos globales (no ya como un centro hegemónico específico que nos domina como periferia, ya que todos los estados están hoy íntimamente enlazados[5]), será activamente destruido junto con esa civilización por quienes occidente ha juzgado como los “incivilizados”. De lo contrario nos queda esperar que la crisis de occidente nos lleve a la catástrofe en la que es probable que los trabajadores de las ciudades llevarán la peor parte.

Etiquetas: ,

Wisconsin and Puerto Rico: Disturbing Convergences

I'm biased about this article. It mentions me as authoritative source of information. Woo-hoo!


Maritza Stanchich, Ph.D.

Maritza Stanchich, Ph.D.

Posted: March 18, 2011

News of gutting collective bargaining rights through parliamentary maneuvers by Republican state senators in Wisconsin has been greeted with a sense of de-ja vu in Puerto Rico.

Etiquetas: , , , , ,

jueves, marzo 24, 2011

Live coverage of Wisconsin protests

CMD: Taking it to the Streets

For six weeks now the Madison-based Center for Media and Democracy has been hitting the streets night and day to bring you live coverage of the spontaneous uprising against Governor Scott Walker’s attack on the middle class. Our articles, quotes and photos have been picked up by hundreds of websites and media outlets nationwide. Help us continue to report on the politicians, spinmeisters and corporations behind this assault on working families. Consider a donation to CMD today.
Read this article on PR Watch.

Etiquetas: , ,

There is no safe radiation

According to the National Academy of Sciences, there are no safe doses of radiation. Decades of research show clearly that any dose of radiation increases an individual’s risk for the development of cancer.
WASHINGTON - March 23 - Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) expressed concern over recent reports that radioactivity from the ongoing Fukushima accident is presentin the Japanese food supply. While all food contains radionuclides, whether from natural sources, nuclear testing or otherwise, th

Etiquetas: , ,

Doctors for Vermont single payer

More than 200 doctors from 39 states and the District of Columbia would seriously consider moving to Vermont if it were to adopt a publicly financed, single-payer health care system.
Peggy Carey, M.D., Vermont Physicians for a National Health Program Deborah Richter, M.D., Vermont for Single Payer Plus physicians available for interview in 26 states via Mark Almberg, PNHP, (312) 782-6006, mark@pnhp.org

Etiquetas: , ,

martes, marzo 22, 2011

Stand up for NPR!


In Defense of NPR

By Bill Moyers and Michael Winship

March 11, 2011

Editor’s Note: National Public Radio – and public broadcasting in general – are under renewed attack by Republicans determined to zero out their funding. The latest slam on NPR came from a right-wing scam, baiting an NPR fundraiser into criticizing the Tea Party.

But the larger question is whether the increasingly tepid journalism of NPR and PBS are worth fighting for. In this guest essay, Bill Moyers and Michael Winship say it is:

Come on now: Let’s take a breath and put this NPR fracas into perspective.

Just as public radio struggles against yet another assault from the its long-time nemesis -- the right-wing machine that would thrill if our sole sources of information were Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, and ads paid for by the Koch Brothers -- it walks into a trap perpetrated by one of the sleaziest operatives ever to climb out of a sewer.


We agree with Joel Meares who, writing for the Columbia Journalism Review, expressed the wish that NPR had stood up for themselves and released a statement close to the following:

"Ron Schiller was a fundraiser who no longer works for us. He had nothing to do with our editorial decision making process. And frankly, our editorial integrity speaks for itself.

“We’ve got reporters stationed all over the world, we’ve won all sorts of prizes, we’ve got an ombudsman who is committed to examining our editorial operations.

“If you think our reporting is tainted, or unreliable, that’s your opinion, and you’re free to express it. And to look for the evidence. But we will not be intimidated by the elaborate undercover hackwork of vindictive political point-scorers who are determined to see NPR fail."

That’s our cue. Come on, people: Speak up!

Etiquetas: , , ,

lunes, marzo 21, 2011

Uranio en Bolivia


Explotar uranio, devastando agua, suelos y biodiversidad, podría convertir a Bolivia en un desierto y contaminar las cuencas hídricas de Sudamérica. Aquí un análisis sobre la posibilidad de que Bolivia apueste por el uranio y la energía nuclear

Plataformaenergetica.org (La Paz, 17/03/11).- Una posible explotación de uranio en Bolivia podría desencadenar una gran contaminación en las mayores cuencas hídricas sudamericanas, como la del Pilcomayo – Paraná y Amazonas, además de poner en riesgo el equilibrio hídrico de Bolivia, Argentina, Paraguay y Brasil, advierte un análisis del periodista especializado Abraham Ender.

Etiquetas: , , ,

domingo, marzo 20, 2011

Radioactive food in Japan



French Lab Says Food in Japan Highly Contaminated: A leading French radiological laboratory that was formed after the 1986 Chernobyl explosion, disagrees with the Japanese assessment that the radioactive contamination of food presents “no risk” and also that the samples were taken from close to the Fukushima plant.

The Commission for Independent Information andResearchon Radioactivity, known as CRIIRAD, is reporting that radioactive contamination of spinach and milk sampled as far away as 100 kilometers from Fukushima are at dangerously high levels and these items should not be consumed.

CRIIRAD has also been collaborating for more than a year with Beyond Nuclear to test water samples collected around U.S. nuclear plants, looking primarily for tritium (radioactive hydrogen) which is known to have leaked at numerous U.S. reactor sites.

CRIIRAD countered the Japanese assertion that the contamination levels were of no consequence and strongly urged that spinach, leafy greens, milk and fresh cheese not be consumed and be withdrawn from markets.

Beyond Nuclear will be issuing a press release regarding CRIIRAD’s conclusions on Monday. We are very concerned at the downplaying of the seriousness of food contamination levels in Japan – by both Japanese and U.S. authorities as well as the media. In addition, we are countering efforts to mislead the American public that its nuclear plants are safe. All 104 reactors are potentially vulnerable to mechanical failure and human error as well as catastrophic loss of power after a natural disaster or terrorist attack.

RUSSIANS CHERNOBYL EXPERTS IN US:Meanwhile, a pre-planned speaking tour of four Russian nuclear experts is serendipitously taking place this week through April 6. Natalia Manzurova is a Chernobyl liquidator who can provide an eyewitness account of the disaster at the Ukraine reactor. Dr. Alexey Yablokov is ascientist and former Yeltsin advisor, who authored a book showing that one million people have died to date as a result of Chernobyl. Leading anti-nuclear spokesperson Nataliya Mironova and Chelyabinsk spokesperson Tatiana Muchamedyarova are also on the speaking tour.

The press is still calling. You can see our TV clips, hear us on the radio and read our newspaper clips on the News page of our website. We are also getting calls from anxious citizens around the country looking for information, support and advice. Awareness about the dangers of nuclear power has been raised by orders of magnitude in the U.S. To meet these needs, we need your support. Please help us with a donation.

Thank you!

Please make your secure donation via our website here. Or send a contribution to: Beyond Nuclear, 6930 Carroll Avenue, Suite 400, Takoma Park, MD 20912.

Etiquetas: , ,

Former CIA analyst David MacMichael

I met former CIA analyst David MacMichael in Wash DC in 1991 and remained in touch with him for a number of years. I'm glad to see he is still around and fighting the good fight. (The Editor's note is written by ace journalist Robert Parry)

Ex-CIA Analyst Decries Manning Abuse

By David C. MacMichael
March 10, 2011

Editor’s Note: In the 1980s, David MacMichael, then a CIA analyst, grew disillusioned with the lies that pervaded the Reagan administration’s policies, especially over the Contra War in Nicaragua. He left the CIA and spoke out against crimes and abuses that he had witnessed.

Like millions of Americans, MacMichael also saw some hope for change in the 2008 campaign of Barack Obama. However, MacMichael and many others have grown disillusioned with President Obama’s preference for continuity regarding the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and national security policies.

MacMichael, as a whistle blower himself, is particularly offended by the harsh treatment of Pvt. Bradley Manning for allegedly leaking classified material relating to the two wars and describing U.S. diplomatic relations with repressive regimes around the world.

MacMichael expressed his outrage in this letter to President Obama:

I write to you in your capacity as the commander-in-chief of the armed services of the United States to express my concern, indeed my outrage, at the way in which the prosecution of U.S. Army Private First Class Bradley Manning is being conducted.

You are, I am sure, aware of the public attention, both in the United States and abroad, being paid to Manning’s case. Few can understand either the length of time without trial since his arrest for the unauthorized distribution of classified material nor the harsh conditions under which he is being held at the Quantico Marine Corps Base brig.

Etiquetas: , , , ,

viernes, marzo 18, 2011

BOLIVIA: No hubo nacionalización



Petrobras concentra el 63% de la producción de hidrocarburos y Sumitomo el 70% de la producción minera, con lo que queda al descubierto que no hubo una verdadera nacionalización en Bolivia, asegura informe del economista Arze

Plataformaenergetica.org (La Paz, 17/03/11).- Un informe del especialista del Cedla, Carlos Arze, da cuenta que dos gigantes transnacionales tienen en sus manos la mayor parte de la producción de hidrocarburos y minerales, que son los ejes fundamentales de la economía exportadora de Bolivia.

En el informe “Antecedentes, contexto y orientación del gasolinazo del MAS” (disponible en http://www.plataformaenergetica.org/content/2728), Arze sostiene que el gobierno del presidente Evo Morales no realizó una verdadera nacionalización en Bolivia.

“En la fase de la producción de hidrocarburos, que es la decisiva, la participación de las empresas transnacionales como operadores es dominante: Petrobras Bolivia produce más del 60 y con su subsidiaria Petrobras Energía superan el 63%. Esta compañía era responsable en el 2004 del 46% de los hidrocarburos y ahora lo es por el 63%”.

“Además de Petrobras destaca Repsol (compañía española que tiene, además, el 49% de las acciones en la empresa YPFB Andina S.A.) con 8,1% de la producción de hidrocarburos. Atrás están Chaco con 12% y Andina con 7,5%, empresas donde la estatal petrolera de YPFB participa como socia mayoritaria”, dice el informe.

“Por eso, --asegura Arze-- concluimos que con el MAS no hubo nacionalización. Es decir, con el mal llamado proceso de “nacionalización” del MAS, las empresas transnacionales son las ganadoras, particularmente Petrobras que, no debe olvidarse, fue la empresa que impulsó la misma privatización durante el gobierno de Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada, logrando el control del campo San Alberto, bajo el pretexto de que tenía que garantizar el cumplimiento del contrato de venta de gas a Brasil”.

En el análisis de Arze, “la presencia dominante de las empresas extranjeras en el sector hidrocarburos es análoga a lo que acontece en la minería. En ésta, en el año 2009 aproximadamente el 70% de la producción estaba en manos de la empresa San Cristóbal (subsidiaria de la transnacional japonesa Sumitomo Corporation, que explota la mayor mina de plata, zinc y plomo del mundo), que con su ingreso en el sector duplicó la producción y compensó constantemente la caída en la producción de las otras grandes mineras como Inti Raymi”.

“Petrobras y San Cristóbal (Sumitomo Corporation) dominan sus respectivos campos en este período gubernamental, reflejando otra característica del régimen capitalista, como es la concentración del capital”.


En el informe citado, el economista Arze sostiene que, “con el gasolinazo ha desaparecido la retórica socialista y nacionalista que mantuvo el MAS en el discurso. La “nivelación” tiene una lógica capitalista 100 por 100, pues lo que se estaba haciendo era garantizar mayores ganancias para las transnacionales, a costa de los bolsillos del pueblo. El gobierno del MAS garantizaba la ganancia de las transnacionales aplicando el precio de los EEUU a un consumidor boliviano miserable”.


** Este es un servicio de la Plataforma de Política Energética, un espacio permanente, plural y abierto a todos, para compartir información, generar conocimiento y promover el debate público sobre los temas fundamentales del sector energético (www.plataformaenergetica.org)

Etiquetas: ,

Al Jazeera, real journalism


Al Jazeera Shows the Way

By Danny Schechter
March 17, 2011

Ediitor’s Note: The U.S. political/media Establishment has long treated Al Jazeera as an American enemy in the global “information war.” During George W. Bush’s presidency, U.S. forces shot and jailed Al Jazeera correspondents as part of Bush’s brutal campaign to force "free-market democracy” on the Middle East.

But it appears Al Jazeera is emerging victorious from this conflict, with far greater credibility among well-informed people than U.S. propaganda outlets, including much of the timid U.S. news media. And, Al Jazeera is now on the front lines of spreading real democracy in the Middle East.


Started in 1996 out of a failed BBC experiment, it has grown into a multi-channel mega network with documentary and sports outlets and news channels in Arabic, English, Turkish, Balkan languages and Swahili, so far.

It has a study center, a training center and offers a range of social media platforms. Its Web sites are big and getting bigger.

--Al Jazeera Network has more than 65 bureaus across the globe – the majority rooted in the global South.

--Al Jazeera Network has more than 3,000 staff members across the world, including more than 400 journalists from more than 60 countries.

--Al Jazeera English has more than 1,000 highly experienced staff from more than 50 nationalities, making AJE’s newsroom among the most diverse in the world.

I was told that a recent commentary of mine about Bernie Madoff on AlJazeera.net drew a whopping 238,000 page views worldwide.

One of the panels here was focused on discussing how what was once called the “CNN effect” has been displaced by the “Al Jazeera effect.” The former was about a cable network that won influence with the men at the top; the latter is about winning credibility and respect from people at the bottom.

I heard a term on the lips of an Al Jazeera executive that I never heard uttered by any American media exec in my years of media watching and working at ABC, CNN and CNBC, among others. The term is “oppression” — as in being a voice for the voiceless, standing up for oppressed people.

Al Jazeera explicitly links its media efforts to the fight for democracy and free speech.

CNN, these days, like Fox and MSNBC, is more about supercharged domestic partisan opinion. Al Jazeera is more about universal human rights, facts and journalism, although when it does offer opinions it always offers more than one.

Its slogan has always been, “the opinion and the other opinion.”

Al Jazeera credits its success to being a trusted and vital source of information. It does real reporting and its own investigations.

Their multi-ethnic army of global correspondents comes from the world’s leading media outlets while it also taps diverse freelancers. It can compete with and often out-scoop BBC and CNN because top staffers once worked for those outlets and know how to do it.

And it has no sacred cows. Its “Palestinian Papers” exposed the Palestinian Authority’s complicity with Israel in negotiations. The PA is now among the channel’s detractors even as the audience in the region was glued to its embarrassing findings.

Etiquetas: , , ,

Karl Grossman video op-ed on the Japanese Nuclear Emergency

jueves, marzo 17, 2011

De Chernobyl a Fukushima



De la Argentina

16 marzo 2011

Duelo nuclear


El reactor cuatro de Chernobyl comienza a fundirse a la una y siete minutos de la madrugada, un sábado primaveral, 26 de abril de 1986. La nube radiactiva, imposible de concebir por mente alguna, emerge del reactor después de que una fuerte explosión termina con la vida de todos los operarios en el seno de la central. De todos. La nube primero se desplazó hacia el este y luego rotó hacia el norte. Enseguida se dividió en cuatro pétalos como si se abriera una flor, en distintas direcciones. Uno de los pétalos de la nube radiactiva fue detectado por un soldado finlandés en un puesto fronterizo. En el mismo instante, en una central nuclear sueca registran altas dosis radiactivas en las botas de un operario. El director de seguridad de la central sueca, Ben Gelman, no termina de entender qué pasa y por la orientación de los vientos sospecha que la radiación proviene del Reino Unido y cuenta más tarde que lo primero que pensó fue en un ataque nuclear en territorio británico, hasta que veinte minutos más tarde se cree que la nube letal proviene de la Unión Soviética. El silencio se hizo interminable. Los soviéticos contestan con evasivas y dicen no saber nada cuando los suecos les preguntan que los vientos provienen de Chernobyl. Hasta ese instante habían transcurrido diez horas de la voladura y fusión del reactor y los bomberos se sumaban a luchar contra el núcleo convertido en una brasa. Los soviéticos reconocen más tarde el desastre diciendo que “no querían alarmar a nadie” y en consecuencia no evacuaron inmediatamente a la población de Pripyat, además hábitat de los trabajadores de la central, la que recibió radiación cuatrocientas veces superior a la generada por la bomba atómica sobre Hiroshima.
La gente de Pripyat, con las primera luces del día, recorría las calles y la plaza con sus hijos, sin saber que sus días estaban contados. Se cruzaron con soldados que portaban trajes y botas como de lluvia y un barbijo en el rostro, y respondían que se trataba de “un simple entrenamiento”.

La fusión del núcleo fue imparable. El setenta por ciento de los radionucleidos cae en Bielorrusia. El 2 de mayo la nube llega a Japón donde miden radiación altísima. El día 4 toca territorio chino y el 5 la nube sobrepasa la India. El 6 de mayo aparece en la costa de Estados Unidos y Canadá. Los informes advierten que la nube radiactiva de Chernobyl dio tres vueltas al globo terráqueo. En Europa también recibió el impacto Alemania, Francia, norte de Italia e Islas Baleares, y en el resto del viejo continente, aunque en menor medida. Los análisis de orina de algunos habitantes catalanes registraron altos índices de yodo radiactivo, un radionucleido que se aloja en la glándula tiroides y se mantiene vivo por ocho días bombardeando desde adentro todo el cuerpo. Pero digamos que hay muchos otros radionucleidos, como el Cesio 137 que contamina durante 30 años todo lo que toca. El Estroncio 90, que ataca la médula ósea y se confunde con el calcio del cuerpo haciendo el mismo recorrido; tiene una vida media de 90 años. Entre los productos de fisión que hay en el núcleo del reactor se halla el gas Xenón, veneno que se inhala y ni la lluvia lo disuelve, permanece vivo por seiscientos años. Son muchísimos los radionucleidos “criados” en la fisión nuclear pero citemos principalmente al más peligros de todos por su alta actividad, el plutonio 239 que se instala en el planeta para no irse por 250.000 años, causando enfermedades terminales. Es inimaginable, pero pensemos que hace 10.000 años había volcanes en Francia y que concluía el último período glacial, y que hace 8000 años el desierto del Sahara era una sabana verde y fértil. El plutonio, creado por el hombre en la fisión del reactor posee una vida media de 24.400 años, pero seguirá activo por 250.000 años.

Este cuadro es el que se reproduce actualmente en Japón, aunque creemos que mucho peor, porque combatir contra cinco reactores a los que habrá que envolver en hormigón, sólo para mitigar el impacto radiactivo al exterior, porque continuarán emitiendo radiactividad por milenios, será una tarea que no permite ver el final. Por lo pronto Fukushima es ya una ciudad fantasma como lo es actualmente la ucraniana Pritya. Nadie puede ocultar la realidad ni la documentación que se fue gestando sobre Chernobyl con diez millones de afectados por cáncer y leucemias, cinco meses después del desastre nuclear.

Cuando los robots enloquecían en el techo del reactor ucraniano, con la utopía de ahogarlo químicamente y sellarlo con una coraza de hormigón, se precipitaban –incontrolados- en el núcleo del reactor. Lo increíble sucedió después cuando setecientos mil soldados fueron enviados a cumplir ese objetivo. Se inmolaron. La orden era que cada uno no estuviera más de tres minutos en esa labor porque no hay traje capaz de frenar ese poder destructivo. Se sumaron a semejante esfuerzo muchísimos campesinos y pobladores, los bomberos y otras fuerzas del orden involucradas, enfermaron gravemente. Ocho mil quinientos de estos héroes murieron en horas y poco a poco el cáncer iba dando cuenta del resto. La tragedia continuaba en cada nacimiento de nuevos seres de aquellas mujeres contaminadas en varios kilómetros a la redonda: los niños de Chernobyl, algunos de los cuales estuvieron en Buenos Aires, en nuestro hospital Garraham, años después.

¿Es alarmista este texto y en consecuencia debemos ocultarlo?

Estamos siendo literales en la descripción de los hechos por eso coincidimos con gran parte del mundo que equipara -por ahora- la tragedia de Chernobyl y Fukushima. Pero este último sitio se agrava por su sismicidad. Salvando esto, se asemejan mucho los dos casos porque en Japón, a cuatro días del desastre, el gobierno se esfuerza en convencer al mundo que la radiación es tolerable; en Chernobyl, dos días después, el 28 de abril, el comunicado oficial leído por la autoridad soviética decía que “se había dañado un reactor y estaban reparándolo.” Las mismos burócratas prohibirían luego toda información vinculada con el caso, un velo que se fue destapando cuando desaparece la URSS. Lamentablemente, las nuevas autoridades ucranianas y rusas reconocen que gran parte de la documentación sobre Chernobyl fue destruida.

Javier Rodríguez Pardo

Movimiento antinuclear del Chubut (MACH) – Sistemas Ecológicos Patagónicos (SEPA)- Red Nacional de Acción Ecologista (RENACE Argentina)- Unión de Asambleas Ciudadanas (UAC) Tel.: (011) 1567485340


Etiquetas: , , ,