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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.

Feel I’m dragging you down a one way street…..

Posted in Stories and reviews by Kathy Da Silva with tags , , , , , , , on June 7, 2016 by kathydasilva


Words from a Lucy Silvas’ song Breathe in life and breathe out…wipe the dust from your brow…
I hope Jake Appelbaum is feeling ‘in recovery’ from the appalling week he must be having… almost as traumatizing as my broken ankle week.. which began the morning of 28th April 2016. What can a person say about life changing things…. I’ve had to sit and rest to a ridiculous amount. Result.. back to the old me, less stressed.. yep… listening to music …yep… wipe the dust from you sweet smile says Lucy..breathe in life.. breathe in life. ..Well we all get a bit ‘campaign weary’ that’s a correct expression. And what really did count in life? Jake for all the ‘offenders/victims’ say, is actually quite a nice guy, very dedicated in his purpose of sharing safety and privacy on the internet.  A lot of people in our society have been horrified by the non-ending war news/happenings of the last decade or so. Am so hoping it will eventually stop and Syrians and Iraqis might be able to return to their homelands.  Being female has not been an easy task for about a decade or so either….. but, hey when someone does the right thing with a person.  I cannot do much but rest my foot, invalided out of action for a while. I got so itchy to move around last night, as some caffeine had stayed in my system and I decided even on one leg I need to get some music on and move around a bit, all be it semi-exercise moves.  I chose the waters I’m in…. through all the thick and thin end of this wedge…Jake is such a strong human, at the end of the day, I just hope he still gets to do some advisory role/speaking role.  I was just amazed when he was invited to speak at the European Parliament about privacy, and the head to head with Louise Mensch author of chic lit books and Conservative lovey on BBC 2 News night. This last year the shows with Ai Wei Wei, and his own show of photographs in Berlin.

The moon will shine for us the stars will light the way….

There’s no smoke without a fire, no sleep without a dream

Heavens where we’ve been..

Fantastic lyrics coming out in a song….

So in spite of a spate of rainwater coming down….. a wonderful calm has come back.  I’ve kind of learned something.  Being yourself is just as important, to maintain balance in life.

The Deluge….

Posted in Stories and reviews by Kathy Da Silva with tags , , , , , , , on May 31, 2016 by kathydasilva



Biblical the amount of rain that fell this morning! Two wet cats, and stuck indoors as the plaster cast isn’t waterproof..ever thankful that honesty in the end might be the reigning principle. I’ve seen too much of the ‘stuff’ that clogs the system. There are 62,000  residents in Fallujah trapped in a war zone. So yes a prayer would not go amiss to free them from ISIS. So yes it’s a ray of sunshine to see the Iraqi flag being carried by it’s troops when they finally make some headway in protecting their own land. Well I hope we see them free on the next round of news. Seeing a docu about Homs, where people who ran businesses had returned to start again was amazing.  I hope that referendum day produces the ‘stay in’ option.  Though I can understand our farmers wanting the right to produce what the land can produce because everything is controlled by Europe what they produce is also  controlled by Europe or what they are able to sell. No one likes operating without a profit. I feel a bit on the fence but leaning toward the togetherness principle of being in. Being isolated could be horrid.

I am a bit rattled by being ‘off sick’… at the moment.  But, hopefully a few books read will not be a bad thing. Ian Jack’s writes for the Guardian news paper, the journalist I mentioned in the last blog piece. I think the times have changed since the incident on the rock of Gibraltar. Mo Mowlem for one and devolution in the North of Ireland.  What can keep the peace. Tony Blair in one of his speeches that seem to be something that have been thought about after the fact of war and its consequences, speaks about Middle Eastern regimes not fitting in with the modern world. I just am not sure about how anyone can think of rapidly changing another person’s culture over night. I thought all these progressions happened ‘in good time’. And so with all the upset with all the terrible shock of war, what will be left of Syria and Iraq this time? Will more ground troops make much of a difference if after withdrawing the same problem might rear it’s ugliness again?

I hope and it’s an on going kind of hope, that we get back to peace talks. There’s no mention of these horrid wars in any soap dramas on television, or any show of impact of refugee crisis. It’s like two different worlds, when you watch TV,  unless it’s CSI or NCIS, where ‘enemies’ are defined as ‘terrorists’ from foreign lands. It’s as if the regular programmes are especially designed to  distract, and or let ‘us’ escape mentally from terrible bombings of cities. I cannot think of taking a holiday in the Med at this current time without thought about the thousands that have drowned trying to escape their troubles. There was a plethora of charity appeals all connected with the troubles: Action Aid: text 70025 to give £3;  Oxfam supplying water in camps: 70061; UNICEF: supplying food: 70030 £3 gives food parcels in the war zones refuge camps. I just hope above all that the youngsters get the hope of fresh starts with safe foster parents.

Send the angels is my prayer.


The Bridge

Posted in Stories and reviews by Kathy Da Silva with tags , , , , , , , on November 23, 2014 by kathydasilva

IMG_6466 A funny thing happened this week. I was walking back from a bar, in Wembley Park, and the sky was dark, it was the kind of wintery atmosphere, that makes most people, shrug their shoulders, and seek shelter. I stood still for a minute as I approached the railway bridge, and realized, this had been the home of my Father when he was small. I often feel a million miles from home, but, my dad was born in Wembley, and later moved with his parents to Reading. I was stood there on the bridge, momentarily reflecting, and then there was that feeling of being home. Not some strange place, that I had never visited. I think my dad’s spirit must have been near. Drizzly London. And yes possibly that feeling of home might just be the right indicator of where to seek accommodation in the near future. And then too, this begot some writing. If a person could see their life ahead of time, I could not have predicted this feeling. It seemed very spiritual. I originally came to London when I was just 19 years of age, to study art at Middlesex. My friend ahead of me, had already settled in a nearby suburban district, just a few stops from Woodgreen. I remember the day I was interviewed with my portfolio, and Quentin, had asked me back for tea. Quentin, had found life tough in the first year of art school, and I think had had a breakdown, that summer, for when I returned having gained my place at the art school, Quentin, was not there. And what can a person say about this city. ‘Outsider’, like the book Quentin had been reading by Camus, ‘Outsiders’, have to tough it here. You leave all the people you’ve known behind when you go away to study. And that just means you start all over again, with new faces, and even new habits. The world, was an ‘oyster’ shell, and the contents a person sought were something of delight. That’s what the packaging promises, doesn’t it. The bar was near empty when I entered. Just one female bartender, serving, and some friends of friends to each other, gossiping about their day their working day. The whole time I sat to drink and eat snacks, there were about four flat screen television’s pinned high on all walls playing the latest football match, fast running feet across the brilliant green pitches made super green by a kind of Kodak color electric signal, message, subliminal. I am colorful, watch me. The decor in the bar, was partly old and shabby, in places, but the front of house, had been newly covered with smart stripy almost traditional red cloth, and paler threading. It seems absurd to say time seemed to have stopped. That I was there again, being nineteen. That suddenly the universe, had been put right, and sanity returned. For a minute. I must take stock. That’s such an English expression. Nation of shop keepers…stock. It is even pleasant remembering this moment. I remember fondly now, though not at the time, my journeys to art school, and walking there, always a long walk through Woodgreen. Haringay Council, libraries, shopping city and my first glance at John Paul Sartre’s ‘Words’, a story of his childhood and developing intellect. And listening many times to something like radio 4, review of books, and around this time they were looking at the novels of existentialists. Quentin had already been aware of Camus, Albert Camus. I had not. So reading for myself, was this very ‘hot pot’ affair of modern novels, versus, nineteen century classics, of all nationalities, in back drop. I had no idea of the way forward at the time, just an avid need to know everything. My new friends, the people I hold dear to myself currently are all actively involved in the progression of politics. This is not an easy arena. And if a person should feel so strongly, strongly enough to become arrested for a particular cause. I was mindful just this minute of William Blake because the government then was prepared to accuse him of sedition. He often spoke about the plight of the poor. And here in our time too, we have people who care, trying to tell the ones who do not about this unequal behavior of government. So how are the ‘poor’ supposed to scold the ‘elite’, in any other way than through demonstration in the street. The English Charter movement, made waves, made the changes, made things happen. That’s almost if not at least one hundred years ago. Is it surprising, to find dissent amongst the poorer classes? I am now singularly worrying about Ciaron O’Reilly. He puts his whole being into the arena of demonstration, in order to prove a point I should say several points about the unequal behaviors of this time of government and it’s planning. We currently have a prime minister in denial of the existence of ‘chemtrails’ , these toxic sprays as far as can be discerned are being used daily in the sky above to ‘re-arrange’ the weather patterns, of our winters, and our summers. There is debate about whole lifestyles, of the problematical, extreme weather conditions producing flooding now regularly a feature of news, particularly in winter time and spring. The world leaders summit in Brisbane, was wholly excluding one demonstrator in particular, and that was Ciaron  O ‘Reilly. His intention was to speak with or get near enough to be heard by Barack Obama, and the other significant Western leaders. The government of Australia, has singled him out, completely excluding him from entering the area which was designated for the summit and it’s visitors. An Outsider. But, in my mind Barack Obama is more outsider, how can it be, that if your birth place is Brisbane, you have no right to be there where the chieftains of world politics gather. No question, no answers allowed. Comments are welcome!

American Programmes, that seem to ‘intercede’…

Posted in Stories and reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 2, 2014 by kathydasilva

I by chance came across a youtube presentation video by Russell Brand the other day whilst trying to  upload a supportive statement of my own, about the whistleblow of Ed Snowden, the ex-CIA operative, who told the world about the excessive gathering of information on the internet, as a result or in persuit of  surveillance, and security.  He particularly pointed out a programme by Judge Jeannine Pirro,  who had mounted quite an ‘offensive’, against President Obama’s resistance to intervene speedily in the Middle East affairs of Iraq, and it’s problemmatical invasion of the terror group ISIS. Russell was of the opinion, that the programme was full of propaganda nuance, and that it would hardly be advisable to go about a campaign of bombing, that was suggested by the afforesaid judge.  I would agree that more bombing would only cause harm to this already fragile economy post-invasion Iraq. This troubled country with at least now 800,000 new orphans created by the Bush era US government’s gung ho attitude toward the famous ‘War on Terror’.  Russell made me look at the presentation of Judge Jeannine Pirro, with an almost resultant horror of what she deemed appropriate action toward the region, where ISIS invaded. And so I wondered at this type of presentation of information, and the resultant influence on public opinion, particularly the ‘average’ American. So how many would be saying yes to that desire of a judge? ‘Just go bomb the hell out of them’ attitude.  I kept thinking of the orphans. I kept thinking of the reduced plutonium that had polluted areas where the US and it’s ‘allies’, had bombed before. I kept thinking of the many, many children being burdened now with disability for a lifetime, because no one had stopped this hideous version of a war before. No one had managed to ‘shout’ loud enough. And world leaders either abstained from taking part, or like terribly blind sheep just followed.  I find a lot of these programmes, quite horrible. I find the statements about peoples from completely different cultures to the USA, discriminatory, unequal, infact quite racist. I meet muslims in the place where I work, young students, who had been made refugees by these very conflicts, and their futures have been altered inextricably altered, by the circumstances of these wars. They struggle learning our language, and then they have to retrain, for employment, retake exams to an ‘English’ standard. An Iraqi student said that ISIS were not from Iraq, and were independant as a group, maybe coming from Jordan and Syria, but this week, The London Evening Standard implicated that some of the group ISIS were Iraqi insurgents. This is not so. This is not fact, and I am wondering who they got to verify the details in order for that to be printed in British press? Anyone with that answer? To afraid to travel to the Middle East in case of kidnap or beheading? Where have all the intelligent reporters gone? Vacuous programmes with little adhesion to truth, are ruining America’ s image abroad. We stand shocked by swearing, blind, raging personalities with nothing to really say, that is of any worth. What happened to the Harvard trained graduates, or have standards slipped. The verbose, loud, angry, with out reason to be angry, other than with themselves for loving death and killing more than creative and responsible decision making. Anthropologists, historians, writers where are you? Why no loving understanding response to tribes people who have their own indigenous histories, and tales, and cultures. Why when it is the realm of Mesopotamia, and Alexandria,  the places where the seed, or root of intelligent thinking, and invention stemmed, why is it America seeks to show aggression toward these people who have far more worth, than, a tabloid can muster or make comment on. I feel appalled. I feel shocked, my sense of the programmes that are aired, currently is that they are full of vacuous empty sollutions with little or no wisdom. People in the USA should begin to switch off their televisions rather than be led by something ungodly, and evil, dark at best.

Human Rights and Human Wrongs..Middle East in Upheaval

Posted in Stories and reviews, Stories and reviews by Kathy Da Silva with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 14, 2014 by kathydasilva


I remember going along to do some reporting last year outside the American Embassy in London. I was expecting the anti-drone  march from Central London, but found to my surprise the establishment of a number of tents and beds, with about seven or so mainly women, on hunger strike protesting on behalf of dissident Iranian men and women, some of whom were murdered and a few who seem to have simply disappeared. Particularly noxious in the scheme of things, this event seems to echo the same kind of resonance of symbolic timing. The date of the massacre, and abduction of seven hostages, appeared to be 1st September 2013.  Amongst the hostages just one woman.  The poster accuses the prime minister of Iraq Nouri al-Maliki of collusion with the Iranian prime minister over the wilful murder, and planning of the attack on camp Ashraf. This for the Iranian’s fleeing the oppressive regime of the Ayatollah, had been their bid for ‘freedom’. Farzuneh Majidi, one of the hunger strikers, had lost family of her own under the current Ayatollah.  She expressly asked for the intervention to be a re-establishment of a monitoring, international army, which she called ‘the blue hats’, I took this to be the United Nations Troops.  And then the question remains too, why has nothing been done to help these people?  Hilary Clinton now seems to be admitting that voting for the invasion of Iraq may have been folly. And I remember at a certain time in Iraq’s past that Saddam Hussain, had been America’s friendly ally and had actually been funded to bolster the borders with Iran, as Iran had a nuclear capability which was of concern to the West.

No News Today Only Cross Words

Posted in Stories and reviews by Kathy Da Silva with tags , , , , , , on April 4, 2014 by kathydasilva

The crossword puzzles
Fill a page of newspaper,
Cryptic clues only