Inside Syria’s War

Yaara Bou Melhem of Dateline Australia manages to sneak in to Syria from Turkey to speak to members of the rebel opposition, including a rare interview with Colonel Riad al-Asaad, a leader of the Free Syrian Army.

And over the jump, Anand Gopal‘s ‘Letter from Taftanaz’ in Harper’s [Scrib’d link].

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Captive Economy: The Pharmaceutical Industry and the Israeli Occupation

One of Israel’s favorite selling points, in its campaign to rebrand itself and divert attention from its ongoing theft of Palestinian land by means of ethnic cleansing, military control and apartheid policies, is its claim to world leadership in medicine. The problem with this line of apartheid PR is, of course, the failure to mention the control the state of Israel has over the Palestinian healthcare system.

Captive Economy, a new report by Who Profits investigates the involvement of Israeli and multinational pharmaceutical industries in the occupation of Palestinian land.

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Beyond the Walls

From Al Jazeera World: “This film tells the story of Arab and Palestinian captives who were detained in Israeli jails and how they had to adapt to a new life after their release. Upon release, the prisoners faced a number of difficulties adjusting to a new life of freedom, albeit within an occupied territory. They explain their mixed feelings to the change in society, and in the political landscape, which they experienced upon being released from the day-to-day monotony of prison life. Beyond The Walls contains beautifully-filmed interviews and novel graphics to provide a moving portrait of the interviewees and the emotions and feelings they are describing.”

Iraq: After the Americans

Second part of an excellent documentary on post-occupation Iraq from Al Jazeera’s Fault Lines (Also see Part 1)

In keeping with Barack Obama’s presidential campaign promise, the US has withdrawn its troops from Iraq and by the end of 2012 US spending in Iraq will be just five per cent of what it was at its peak in 2008.

In a special two-part series, Fault Lines travels across Iraq to take the pulse of a country and its people after nine years of foreign occupation and nation-building.

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Gore Vidal, RIP

The great Gore Vidal is no more. One of the greatest prose-stylists of the last 100 years, he had a rapier-like wit, and remained a non-conformist to the end. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate his life than to leave you in Gore’s own company. Here is an archive of Gore Vidal’s writings and media appearances, some of them rare, that PULSE has published over the years. Also, don’t miss this blistering 1986 response to the Norman Podhoretz in which Vidal is identifying predilections, particularly the neoconservatives passionate attachment to Israel, that 17 years later would lead the US to disaster in Iraq.