Archive for John Pilger

Wednesday’s Curzon showing of John Pilger’s film The Coming War with China

Posted in Current affairs, health, politics, Stories and reviews, Stories and reviews by Kathy Da Silva, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 19, 2016 by kathydasilva

 

film-reel4

I have been writing or working on, the next novel in a list of ‘ideas’ as they had started out, tonight. It is my first ‘supernatural’ or possibly ‘sci fi’ one in subject, but, the aim was indeed, more H.G. Wells in origins. A picture of one possible future. I have in the past had dreams some quite surreal in content, and certainly, I am going to have to find a way to interweave, the content of this, in the current book. It was in the endeavour to do this, that I suddenly became mindful too, of the possible reality that lay ahead if the politicians are unable to get their heads round the conflict zones, particularly the grave and unholy wars of the Middle East. Humans only maintain personal dignity and dignified living if they respect eachother’s rights, of passage, through this life. Our enjoyment through the progress of history has been to create, civilized society, where amongst the work and toil we also manage to enjoy, something of a leisure time, and this most truly is represented in the form of holidays for family and with friends. I shudder to think of what my impressions of the Med will be if I should manage to get back to an annual vacation somewhere like in Greece and or Italy or Spain. For how should I be able to forget the many lives lost, in the effort to be free from war, in the waters that lay lapping the edge of the shores there? The ‘miscreants’ at the top seem ‘hell bent’ for spoiling it for all of us currently. How did that happen? How did 9/11 arrive on our shores. How can 900 firemen develop cancers and some have died of those cancers, and remarkably, not much of a protest was allowed to be shown on a television network of national breadth.

I am penning or typing this article, having remembered something, from a holiday in Lake Como with my then alive and just retired mother. It would have been in the late eighties, and my mother and I had innocently wandered into the grounds of one of the villas, a historic one, with much ornamentation to its interior. The person who was an employee, who normally would have given tourists a guided talk, with helpful hints at famous historical characters who had stayed or dwelt there, this person had told us that much of the building had been prebooked for a conference on nuclear power. There were some rooms therefore not open for viewing. The Villa Como, that we were showed had some rooms, where in the time of Napoleon, and his love, Josephine, where they had stayed with adjoining rooms. A romantic era, and with what had caught most people’s attention,  the guide, had helped us enjoy, our afternoon. We had proceeded further along the lakeside, buildings to find other more open houses, and in one, remarkably a machine rather like a CT scanner, was being shown, only this machine, measured in an accurate manner levels of radiation in a body from top, to toe, head to feet. When I viewed John Pilger’s film the other week, which was broadcast by independent television, he had showed a rather older version of  a scanner which measured where and in what part the radiation had filtered to in the human body, ‘the guinea pig’, who had volunteered from the Marshall Islanders, who after all were fairly poor and open to economically enhancing experiments on themselves. The Islanders, non of whom live much beyond the age of forty on average today because of the pollution of nuclear bombs, which have been tested there. What is more frightening, is that the political leaders of our time think this is the only way forward to maintain that fragile thing called PEACE. The horrid tragedy of Fukashima, is enough I would have thought to put people off nuclear energy altogether. So why do we allow our leaders to do this? This is the even more bewildering thing, apart from that somewhere in the eighties, a group of women did protest the placement of cruise missiles on a site of common ground near to their villages, as clearly it made the site a possible ‘first strike zone’. The women won their point and the missiles were removed. We possess only one missile of this size, on a submarine further north, between the border of England and Scotland.

It now  seems along time since the subject of nuclear war or power has come into the text of regular articles and news items

030606-N-0000X-005 Washington, D.C. (Jun. 6, 2003) -- Artist concept of the SSGN conversion program. Four Ohio-class strategic missile submarines USS Ohio (SSBN 726), USS Michigan (SSBN 727) USS Florida (SSBN 728), and USS Georgia (SSBN 729) have been selected for transformation into a new platform, designated SSGN or Tactical Trident. The SSGNs will have the capability to support and launch up to 154 Tomahawk missiles, a significant increase in capacity as compared to other platforms. The 22 missile tubes will also provide the capability to carry other payloads, such as unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs), unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and special forces equipment. This new platform will also have the capability to carry and support more than 66 Navy SEALs (Sea, Air and Land) and insert them clandestinely into potential conflict areas. U.S. Navy graphic. (RELEASED)

with a detrimental warning of the possibilities of war, using them. I am now more convinced since viewing John Pilger’s film, that the rotten way that politicians, who many have supported the making of these more refined weapons, and some who have invested their own money in the making of them, have also devised the way to keep the perpetuation of their making in with the nation’s plans of defense. For as long as we the human race run away from our creator, we will fear war and arguments with other nations. It is all so material in the end. But, sad too, the money to make war, could have been spent on space travel and or cures for disease in humans and animals.

If it is over thirty years ago now that an advanced scanner for detection of nuclear radiation in the human body was shown on the shores of Lago di Como, just where is that technology now?  And in whose hands? Will our parks be the beautiful places for our children to inherit in the future?

I feel unhappy, and very sad, that in The Coming War with China, we are left with the knowledge that a build up of military units is already in place in the far western Pacific Isles, and in one such location 40,000 military personnel, live regularly. And no mention of the radioactive plume affecting the Pacific waters, and fish, and the fact that so much of the Pacific is apparently dead already. Do we really want more deadly radiation?

God bless the people who speak of peace.

The Coming War with China a review of last night..John Pilger Documentary

Posted in Current affairs, health, politics, Stories and reviews by Kathy Da Silva with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 7, 2016 by kathydasilva

Last night I did a thing, unusual to me, and that was putting off going to my poetry unplugged in Farringdon at the Betsie Trotter Pub, usually MC’d by Niall Sullivan, of Poetry Society Café. I for some reason had spent too long, getting ready, and something made me look at the net, and I found John Pilger’s Documentary, The Coming War in China, was programmed for ITV, at 10.40pm. The content of the documentary was a current look at the military machine and planning of the nation of America, the country we have long become use to calling the United States.

I felt recently, that the USA must have been looking at the growing EU economy with a sense of competitive, and possibly invasive perspective, and this kind of proved, that America is on the grow where influence and business, is concerned, it is behaving, as perhaps Britain did during colonial times, trying to influence markets exploiting old friendships and touting for business with offers of investments which would tie effectively nations to their word over complimentary tax deals and savings. I saw this as America on the ‘build’. However, there is a limit I think with which nations would greet or accept the dominance of such a culture, on its own market planning and image. We are independent nations in the EU in terms of our cultures, but, for Europeans, the EU guaranteed some fair trading, which Brexit might not. I do not think in reality that we needed America actually trying to inroad the EU as it was trying to propose new trade deals and tie up businesses over here with the TPP deal which has gone sour and Trump promises to dispose of on taking up his presidency.

The John Pilger documentary, was truly factual, and amazingly shocking in content his expertise from many years as a journalist and activist for peace, glowing throughout. I was very happy that the people of the Marshall Islands finally might get some more help and possibly justice for all the wrong that they have been dealt. But, the most blindingly obvious exposure, of a crime, came with the detailed analysis of radiation poisoning going on with all the nuclear test program of the USA on the islands, and its inhabitants. A conscious effort to prove, the power, and also damage and perhaps to try to control damage to localities in their research, the Americans chose to experiment with a total disregard to natives human rights, as if the natives were of no importance on this earth at all. It showed the efforts of Greenpeace activists at the time helping local inhabitants try to survive the test bombing of the area, evacuating them to nearby but, further away islands in the Pacific. It seems as if America is getting ready for war, and overwhelmingly it shows them planning and scrutinizing China as a potential enemy to combat with. Wherever America placed its military, there seems an effort to dominate and use other countries, in this effort including Japan, Taiwan, and Australia. One of the interviewees, had told that, America used bases owned by Australia, but, put their own USA troops inside, so it looked like they had not maneuvered, into place at all. Or that it kept the knowledge of their presence more secret from the population of that country. One aspect of the documentary also included the massive increase of the creation of nuclear fueled/powered weaponry, and manufacture and sales of, this, had kept or had been keeping the American economy alive during the ‘reign’ of the Obama presidential period. And is it surprising now to have seen America selling arms to the Saudis, during this time as weapons sales bring in millions of dollars. Each of the test bombs on the Marshall Islands cost the USA over something like one hundred million dollars per shot. Fascism can come like a Trojan horse, loaded inside, with something very destructive internally. I have wondered too at the incredible extent of trials with wheat and crops of the company Monsanto, who have devised, new patented seeds as a result of their research and for what purpose?  One of the experimental elements of the bomb tests in the Marshall Islands was to test the effects of radiation on animals and products creams etc., that would help protect skin that was exposed. Just how far this research has gone, will be hopefully the focus for any follow up documentary that John Pilger might manage to pull out of his very wonderful bag of knowledge and journalism.

The Coming War with China ended with  a slide show  of John Pilger photographic stills, an ever flowing fountain of talent to the visual art of documentary photojournalism.

BFI are showing The Coming War with China by John Pilger,I believe  from the 8th December 2016 and in Picture Houses around the town in London.