Are Hawaii and the Cayman Islands being sold to the global elite?

Are Hawaii and the Cayman Islands being sold to the global elite?

For over a century, the destiny of this island paradise has been in the hands of outsiders. Now native Hawaiians are reclaiming their culture, language and land. 

“Hawaii is being sold to the global elite. It’s not give and take. It’s just take, take, take, take.”  Filmmaker Chris Kahunahana 
“They took it away in three generations. We’re going to get it back in one. Whatever it takes.” Waterman Pomai Hoapili. 
It’s a slice of paradise for some but behind the postcard façade, native Hawaiians have a different story to tell.  
Theirs is a stuggle for land, language and culture, forcibly taken from them by the United States of America. 
Housing prices in Hawaii were already sky high, but in the midst of the pandemic they exploded as mainland Americans bought up island boltholes. The housing crisis is hitting native Hawaiians hardest, forcing many out of their own homes. The state of Hawaii now has the third highest homeless rate in the USA. 
This is one of many problems facing native locals who are fighting to ʻKeep Hawaii Hawaiian’. 
Reporter Matt Davis visits the Hawaiian Islands to hear from the people fighting to keep their culture alive. In a visually stunning journey, Davis explores the lives of people on the frontline of this modern-day native Hawaiian rennaisance. 
“Resistance is not only how we get our land back,” says school principal Kalehua Krug. “But it is also medicine – that resistance is how we heal.” 
At his school on the island of Oahu, the curriculum focuses on redsicovering the modern story of Hawaii after the kingdom was overthrown in 1893. The students study the Hawaiian language, hula dancing and other cultural practices alongside the mainstream curriculum.
 Davis takes a tour around the back streets of Waikiki with celebrated filmmaker Chris Kahunahana, the first native Hawaiian to direct a feature film.  
“Hawaii was seen as Hollywood’s back drop. It served as a beautiful location for a Caucasian centred hero,” he tells Davis.  His movie Waikiki shows the darker side of these tropical islands – the reality for many native Hawaiians. 
Davis visits the powerhouse community leader Twinkle Borge who has set up a permanent camp to provide shelter for Hawaiians who are sleeping rough. She reveals an extraordinary plan to reclaim land and build a village for her community. 
And he goes out on the jet ski with waterman Pomai Hoapili in the middle of the worldʻs most famous surfing competition – the Pipeline Pro. 
Between surfing on the North Shore and rescuing people caught in the giant waves, Pomai has enrolled in Hawaiian language classes. He practices speaking with his 10-year-old daughter, who’s also learning.  He says it’s urgent for native Hawaiians to practice their culture. 
“Be Hawaiian, speak Hawaiian live Hawaiian…If we stop down the line, people stop talking about us, we disappear…we’ve got to keep practicing.” 
In Hawaii to compete in the Pipeline surfing competition, the world’s most famous  surfer Kelly Slater asks the world to pay respect. 
“Everyone who comes Hawaiian should, should take care of this place and really respect the culture and the locals,” says Slater. “It’s their home and it’s your place to visit, but, you know, take care of it and look after it and ever one can enjoy it.” 

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NATO accession – Nordic perspective

NATO accession – Nordic perspective 

The war in Ukraine seems to have put an end to European indecision. Countries such as Switzerland, Austria, Sweden and Finland imposed sanctions on Russia. But Switzerland and Austria are hundreds of kilometers from the Russian border. Sweden and Finland, on the other hand, are on the brink. Consequently, these Nordic countries view with great concern the events in Ukraine and fear that the crisis may spread beyond Ukraine.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine looks set to make what has hitherto been almost unimaginable the rapid accession of two Nordic countries – Sweden and Finland – to NATO. According to forecast analysis , the debate is no longer about “whether or not Sweden and Finland will join”, but “when and how soon they will join”.
It is a historic moment and time of great decisions in the geopolitics of these two Nordic states, decisions which will determine the security configuration in this region of Europe and beyond for many decades to come. The decision is by no means easy.
In Kosovo, for example, membership in the Alliance may enjoy unreserved support, but for the Nordic countries, joining NATO is not accompanied by much enthusiasm. First of all, it is a cold calculation that shows for the awareness that membership will not only bring security, but is likely to be followed by tensions in the Nordic-Russian region as well.
Below is a brief summary of the Swedish-Finnish view on NATO membership and the evolution of their foreign policy as a result of the Russian occupation of Ukraine.
From neutrality to non-alignment, then to membership
To understand the reasons why Sweden and Finland are not members of NATO one must first make a brief recollection of their history. Sweden has not been involved in the war for more than two hundred years. During the Cold War, it took a neutral position on the rivalry between NATO and the Warsaw Pact, an alliance of communist states rallying around the former Soviet Union that disintegrated with the end of the Cold War.
However, from the early 1990s onwards, Sweden’s position has evolved from a genuine neutrality to the status of a non-aligned country in terms of security. In other words, while Sweden continues to be a non-NATO member, its armed forces work closely with those of the Alliance, as well as contributing to joint peacekeeping forces ( including Kosovo ). The standard operating procedures of the Swedish army are in full compliance with those of NATO; Democratic control over the armed forces is complete and in accordance with the basic principles of consolidated democratic states.
However, the voice of those who in the past have called for NATO membership, both by the government and the public, has always been low. In fact, Swedish politics – almost its entire spectrum – has always been clear about Russian politics. She has not cultivated illusions about Moscow, a sentiment that has been encountered not infrequently in German politics, for example. Basically, the reason for staying out of NATO for Sweden is explained through its own history. Why change the security architecture if the current one has contributed to the country not going to war for more than two centuries? So there was no reason to modify the security configuration. At least not so far.
Finland, on the other hand, emerged from the bloody World War II, with lost territory but proud and proud of its citizens’s heroic battles against the Soviet Union. It shares the 1300 km border with Russia and, perhaps more than any other nation, understands very well the psyche of the Russian citizen, his ambitions, prejudices and fears.
Like Sweden, Finland during the Cold War adopted a position of neutrality towards East and West, but with ever-increasing tendencies of rapprochement with NATO, participating in its peacekeeping forces, as in Kosovo . Even in this country, the standard operating procedures are in full compliance with those of NATO, while the state has full democratic control over the armed forces. Unlike Sweden, Finland has been at war with Russia and precisely for the sake of cultivating stable relations has had to rule out the option of NATO membership. So far.
Finland has had to work hard to cultivate a relatively close relationship with Moscow, a relationship based on mutual respect and trust. This is a close relationship not like the one that can be encountered between two friends, but one that can be seen between enemies who, for the sake of coexistence, must find common bridges of cooperation. Thus Finland had to learn how to work and even cooperate with Russia. They are neighbors, after all.
It is no coincidence that Finns like former President Martti Ahtisaari have mediated in conflicts like the one between Kosovo and Serbia. This is because people like him have enjoyed the trust of the West but also of Russia. In Finland, support for NATO membership has always been higher than in Sweden, but such a step has not been taken due to maintaining the balance of peace with Russia. Either way, such a step can be taken very quickly.
Between safety and permanent voltage
The Kremlin’s ever-increasing aggression has led public opinion in both Sweden and Finland to vote in favor of NATO membership. The application for membership is likely to be made very soon, probably at the next NATO summit that is expected to be held in Madrid at the end of June . Finland will enter the membership dance with more taste and enthusiasm; Sweden will take this step with a little nausea and laziness.
The governments of both countries take this step without euphoria and with responsibility, aware that membership strengthens the security architecture but also carries with it a series of dilemmas and tensions in the field of security that can continue for decades.
With NATO membership, the Nordic region and the whole of northwestern Europe come under the Alliance’s security umbrella. Any attack on these states would be an attack on NATO, as stated by NATO Article 5 on collective defense.
But on the other hand, the whole security architecture of the Nordic-Russian region will move towards further militarization. There will be an increase in armaments, an increase in military spending, which means less money for health, education, the environment, and so on. The West-East partition along the Baltic Sea will also be concreted, which will lead to further isolation of Russia. A completely isolated enemy can be even more dangerous than the one with whom we maintain communication contacts, however rare they may be.
In this regard, especially Helsinki will have to rebuild political relations with Moscow, relations cultivated with sensitivity for decades. Furthermore, the risk of incidents and unconventional attacks, such as cyber attacks, will increase. And, finally, it is likely that we are entering an ice age, of a neo-brutal militarization of societies for decades. This crazy arms race is not a good omen for anyone, especially when dealing with criminal and completely irrational regimes like the Kremlin.
The constant militarization of states and societies leads to the escalation of new conflicts and reduces the space for peace. All this is happening in the circumstances when today’s Mordor – to borrow an analogy from the works of JRR Tolkien according to which Mordor is the epicenter of Evil in the world – that is, the Kremlin, shows no signs of softening in its savagery.
Is there any other way but to arm NATO membership? As is the case with Sweden and Finland, it is easy to call for peace, but in the face of brutal aggression coming from the Kremlin, there seems to be no alternative but to join NATO.
Armend Bekaj
Armend Bekaj is a Lecturer in the Department of Peace and Conflict Research at Uppsala University, Sweden. He has worked for a number of international organizations, including International IDEA in Sweden. He holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Sheffield, UK.

Arundhati Roy on Religious Nationalism, Dissent, and the Battle Between Myth and History

Arundhati Roy on Religious Nationalism, Dissent, and the Battle Between Myth and History 

 Good afternoon, and thank you for inviting me to deliver the Sissy Farenthold lecture. Before I begin, I would like to say a few words about the war in Ukraine. I unequivocally condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and applaud the Ukrainian peoples’ courageous resistance. I applaud the courage shown by Russian dissenters at enormous cost to themselves.
I say this while being acutely and painfully aware of the hypocrisy of the United States and Europe, which together have waged similar wars on other countries in the world. Together they have led the nuclear race and have stockpiled enough weapons to destroy our planet many times over. What an irony it is that the very fact that they possess these weapons, now forces them to helplessly watch as a country they consider to be an ally is decimated—a country whose people and territory, whose very existence, imperial powers have jeopardized with their war games and ceaseless quest for domination.

Scientists Stage Worldwide Climate Change Protests After IPCC Report

Over 1,000 scientists from 25 different countries staged protests last week following the release of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s new report. The report warned that rapid and deep cuts to greenhouse gas emissions are necessary by 2025 to avoid catastrophic climate effects.
The group, called the Scientist Rebellion, writes in a letter that “current actions and plans are grossly inadequate, and even these obligations are not being met.” Their protests “highlight the urgency and injustice of the climate and ecological crisis,” per a statement from the organization.
In Los Angeles, scientists including Peter Kalmus, a NASA climate scientist with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, chained themselves to the JP Morgan Chase building.
“We’ve been trying to warn you guys for so many decades,” Kalmus says, his voice shaking. “The scientists of the world have been being ignored. And it’s gotta stop. We’re going to lose everything.”
They were met by about 100 police officers in riot gear and arrested, reports Salon’s Eric Schank

Register for Online Conference Global Crisis, Time for Truth

The organizers would like to inform you about the international online conference Global Crisis, Time for Truth, 

The conference will take place on 04.12.2021. The conference has organized by volunteers from more than 180 countries around the world and will be interpreted into approximately 100 languages. 

Please share information about the conference, let the whole world know about it. 

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The Return of the Taliban: The End of the US Empire?

Before 9/11, Nafeez Ahmed warned of an impending invasion of Afghanistan to control a strategic pipeline. 20 years on, the return of the Taliban is the predictable legacy of America’s failed strategy

 “We did not push the Russians into invading, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would,” said Zbigniew Brzezenski, former national security advisor to President Jimmy Carter. “That secret operation was an excellent idea. The effect was to draw the Russians into the Afghan trap.” 
The US and UK played the lead roles in channelling funds and arms to the newly formed ‘mujahideen’, which brought in up to a hundred thousand recruits from across the Muslim world. Pakistan and Saudi Arabia were the most prominent among the network of Muslim states funnelling financial, military and logistical support into Afghanistan, coordinated by the CIA, Pentagon, MI6 and Ministry of Defence. Read More

Why renewable energy ‘mini-grids’ in remote communities fail and how to avoid it

Powering our appliances and charging our smart devices night and day is something many take for granted. Yet 789 million people living in remote communities and isolated areas globally do not have access to electricity. If we include the people who are not connected to their national grid, the number rises to 1.4 billion.

The Latest IPCC Report Is a Catastrophe – The Atlantic

The Latest IPCC Report Is a Catastrophe – The Atlantic

 A new United Nations–led report from hundreds of climate scientists around the world makes it clear: The human-driven climate crisis is now well under way. 
Earth is likely hotter now than it has been at any moment since the beginning of the last Ice Age, 125,000 years ago, and the world has warmed 1.1 degrees Celsius, or nearly 2 degrees Fahrenheit, since the Industrial Revolution began—an “unprecedented” and “rapid” change with no parallel in the Common Era. 
What’s more, the recent spate of horrific heat waves, fire-fueling droughts, and flood-inducing storms that have imperiled the inhabited world are not only typical of global warming, but directly caused by it.