Open Letter to the Directors of All Accredited Media in La Habana


From #OZT: I Accuse the Cuban Government Campaign:

Dear Sir or Madam,

We write to you worried about the police and paramilitary harassment denounced from Banes ―a small town in the Cuban province of Holguín― by Reina Luisa Tamayo. She is the mother of Orlando Zapata Tamayo the prisoner of conscience who died on 23 February after a prolonged hunger strike that up to its tragic and fatal outcome had little coverage in the international press.

Every Sunday, we receive, mostly through phone interviews broadcast by the US-based Radio Martí, the same report from Reina Luisa describing how she is beaten, insulted and how [the government directed mob] prevents her from going to the town’s church to pray for her son and the health of all Cuban political prisoners still in jail. The repressive organs of the Cuban regime also impede her to visit her son’s tomb.

It is surprising to us that despite the wide coverage dedicated to Cuban topics, your organization has not reported on this. We know of the limitations to movement within Cuba, but we also understand that any foreign reporter has the means and resources to travel to the Eastern part of the island and give an eyewitness report of what happens there, in front of Reina Luisa Tamayo’s home.

We do not wish to tell the media what they should do, but to share with you our concern for the life of a woman who has lost her son in unjust circumstances and is clamoring for the world’s help to avoid more deaths.

We, the promoters of the #OZT: I accuse the Cuban government Campaign that demands the unconditional and immediate release of all peaceful political prisoners in Cuba and the respect of all Cubans’ human rights; write to you because we know that the international press in Cuba not only bears witness to what happens there, but can also help prevent and stop harassment incidents like those suffered by the Ladies in White in March of this year.

We would also like to know if there is any kind of legal hindrance or of any other sort that prevents your reporter in La Habana from traveling to other regions of Cuba.

We thank you in advance for your reply.


#OZT: I accuse the Cuban government Campaign

The Not-So-Free Free Textbook


Via the Technology section of The New York Times:

INFURIATING Scott G. McNealy has never been easier. Just bring up math textbooks.

Mr. McNealy, the fiery co-founder and former chief executive of Sun Microsystems, shuns basic math textbooks as bloated monstrosities: their price keeps rising while the core information inside of them stays the same.

“Ten plus 10 has been 20 for a long time,” Mr. McNealy says.

Early this year, Oracle, the database software maker, acquired Sun for $7.4 billion, leaving Mr. McNealy without a job. He has since decided to aim his energy and some money at Curriki, an online hub for free textbooks and other course material that he spearheaded six years ago.

There’s more…

An EarthEcho View of the Gulf Spill


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by Philippe Cousteau via EarthEcho International:

Another early morning, all the more early because we didn’t stop work till 2AM last night! Today we head off to Grand Isle about three hours away from Venice to visit with Louisiana Wildlife and Fish department. Oil has made its way into the mangroves which means some of our worst fears have been realized. These wetland habitats are some of the most fragile in the world and also some of the most important. 40% of all the wetlands in the lower 48 states exist along the coast of Louisiana and they are directly in the oil’s path. Look at the photos and you will see why once the oil gets into these tight intricate bodies of water, there is no getting it out.

There’s more…

EarthEcho International is a nonprofit 501c3 organization founded in 2000 by siblings Philippe and Alexandra Cousteau in honor of their father Philippe Cousteau Sr., famous son of the legendary explorer Jacques Yves Cousteau. EarthEcho International’s mission is to empower youth to take action that restores and protects our water planet.

Get a Free Book and Help the Gulf Coast Cleanup Effort!


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From Chelsea Green:

We’re giving away a digital edition of Riki Ott’s Not One Drop: Courage and Betrayal in the Wake of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill on Scribd. It’s free to read online and free to download. All we ask in return is that you consider helping us raise money to assist in the Gulf Oil Spill Disaster clean-up.

There’s more…

Brunelli on Berrigan: Of Wars, Faith, and Poetry


Daniel Berrigan

(Image from Wikimedia Commons, licensing info HERE).

From Guernica, via @sickjew:

Two years ago I bought a little browned book for twenty-five cents; it was published in 1968, and it was a war journal.This past Thursday, when my purse only allowed a thin, small something the size of a day planner, Daniel Berrigan’s Night Flight to Hanoi: War Diary with 11 Poems was the only book that would fit. I am not one for superstition; I usually laugh when someone speaks heartily of coincidence. Yet, in many ways, the happenstance of my reading this book has changed that–it has, if I may, made me believe.

Daniel Berrigan, who turned eighty-nine on May 9th, is a Roman Catholic priest who has spent his life protesting against violence, writing essays and poems that reflect his hope for societal and political change. He has been arrested many, many times for his peace protests, but also for more radical actions–he spent eighteen months in jail after burning draft notices during the Vietnam War. In Night Flight to Hanoi Berrigan describes his imprisonment, as well as his time spent in Vietnam, when, along with the late Howard Zinn, he accompanied three American prisoners on their release–this was an offering of peace from the Vietnamese–back to the United States.

There’s more…