James Cogan – Australia

(Disambiguate with James Cogan, a member of the Ottawa Social Media Meetup Group)

Linked with Iranian regime reacts to Obama’s election.

James Cogan, 37, has been a staff writer for the World Socialist Web Site since 1998. Raised in the Victorian town of Bendigo /Australia, James enlisted in the Australian Army at the age of 17, serving with the infantry until 1990. Opposed to the Hawke-Keating Labor government and the first US-led war against Iraq, James joined the SLL in 1991. He moved to Sydney in 1994 and was elected branch and then Sydney Area Secretary. Over the past four years James has written extensively on the US-led invasion and occupation of Iraq. His regular articles documenting the ongoing atrocities of US imperialism and its allies in the Middle East are followed by a growing international audience. In 2004 he represented the SEP in the federal seat of Kingsford-Smith, opposing Labor’s Peter Garrett. (Socialist Equality Party SEP).

His personal website: JamesCogan.com is the deferential home for the personal thoughts, news and opinions of a Canadian entrepreneur, husband, father of two boys and founder of the dailypixel Network.

He tells on his blog: … Amassing over a million downloads in under seven days, ‘The Dark Knight’ is by far the most pirated movie of this week. Earlier this year, Cam and DVD-screener versions of the latest in the Batman series already found their way onto the Internet, making this blockbuster the most pirated movie of 2008 … That leads to the inevitable question; is movie piracy the big villain that the movie industry would like us to believe it is? Or has piracy to some degree become a precursor for box office success? In other words, if nobody is pirating and downloading your movie, is it doomed to fail? … (full text, Nov. 21, 2008).

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James Cogan – Australia

Watch his video: Rudd and Howard prepare to back US attack on Iran, 4.43 min, November 11, 2007.

He writes: 2 days after making history and being elected the next President of the United States, Barack Obama registers the domain name change.gov. Change was his primary brand message, now it’s his primary domain name. Smart fella that Obama is (Obama gets it – on his website).

An increasing number of politicians, diplomats, military commanders and media commentators are describing the US-led occupation of Afghanistan as a failure and warning that American and NATO forces face defeat at the hands of a strengthening resistance movement led by the Islamist Taliban movement. The most prominent example in the past week has been a comment published in the British Independent on October 20 by David Davis, a Conservative Party parliamentarian. He has been promoted by various liberals and “lefts” in Britain as a defender of civil liberties, due to his opposition to aspects of the Labour government’s anti-terrorism laws … (full text, Oct. 24, 2008).

Find him and his publications on a Google compilation of his articles on WSWS; on Google Book-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

… If the security agreement is passed by the Iraqi parliament and comes into effect on January 1, 2009, it will represent one more milestone in the reduction of Iraq to the status of a US client-state. The next step will be the negotiation of a formal “Strategic Framework Agreement”, or long-term defence treaty that will govern the operations of US forces in the country after December 31, 2011. Far from “bringing the troops home”, an Obama administration will preside over the indefinite deployment of tens of thousands of US military personnel in Iraq and attempt to complete the neo-colonial operation initiated by the Bush White House. (full text, 19 November 2008).

He asks: … That leads to the inevitable question; is movie piracy the big villain that the movie industry would like us to believe it is? Or has piracy to some degree become a precursor for box office success? In other words, if nobody is pirating and downloading your movie, is it doomed to fail? Maybe the Dark Knight is the exception, not the rule. With its big budget aesthetics, perhaps many people who pirated the movie simply had their appetite whetted with the pirated version and then subsequently went to the theater to see it on the big screen to get the full experience. I’m not sure what the answer is, but it appears that piracy alone can’t be blamed for the overall downturn in box office revenues … (full text, Nov. 21, 2008).

He writes also: … Without US support, the Kurdish factions have no possibility of achieving their ambitions. In Kirkuk, in particular, the result may well be escalating communal conflict and, potentially, civil war between the KRG and the US-backed Baghdad government or a Turkish military intervention. Even as the Bush administration hails its “surge” as a major success, the lurches and shifts in its policies have only fuelled antagonisms between rival Iraqi factions and generated new recriminations against the US occupation. (full text, February 11, 2008).

Le cabinet irakien temporise sur l’accord de sécurité américain, Nov. 1, 2008.

US carries out more airstrikes in Pakistan, November 3, 2008.

Turkish military again strikes Kurdish areas in northern Iraq, 7 February 2008.

Iraq: US military extends its offensive into the northern city of Mosul, 30 January 2008.

De-Baathification laws modified by Iraq’s parliament, 17 January 2008.

Ölpreisverfall untergräbt die Stabilität des Regimes im Iran, 12. November 2008.

… Karzai told Time: “In order to fix terrorism at large, we need to remedy the wrongs of the past 30 years. Remedy means to undo. The world pushed us [Afghan jihadists] to fight the Soviets. And those who did walked away and left all the mess spread around. September 11 is a consequence of this … “In the years of fighting against the Soviets, radicalism was the main thing. Someone like me would be called half a Muslim because we were not radical. The more radical you were the more money you were given. Radicalism became not only an ideological tool against the Soviets but a way forward economically. The more radical you presented yourself, the more money the West gave you.” When Time protested that “it wasn’t just the West; it was Saudi Arabia, Pakistan”, who fomented Islamic extremism in Afghanistan, Karzai answered: “[T]hey were led by the West. The moderates were undermined. Afghan history and nationalism were called atheism. The more you spoke of radicalism, the better you were treated. That’s what we are paying for now.” … (full text, 8 September 2008).

And he writes: … IMF measures wreak havoc on Iraqi people … The disastrous social conditions that exist for the Iraqi people after decades of war and nearly three years of US occupation are being dramatically worsened as a result of International Monetary Fund (IMF)-dictated economic restructuring. In order to gain a $685 million IMF loan and the cancellation of some of Iraq’s $120 billion debt, the government of Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari secretly agreed in December to begin eliminating the subsidies that previously delivered the Iraqi people some of the lowest fuel costs in the world. On December 19—just four days after the elections in which Jaafari’s United Iraqi Alliance (UIA) won more than 45 percent of the vote—the first cut in the fuel subsidy was implemented. The immediate impact was to increase the price of petrol, diesel, cooking gas and kerosene by an average of 500 percent. Petrol rose from just 3 US cents a litre to between 12 and 17 cents. (full text, 21 February 2006).

He argues: … The reality of global capitalism in the twenty-first century, however, is that national governments have no control over the vast movements of capital that determine the fate of millions. “Economic management” consists of following the dictates of the market to remove all barriers to private profit—an endless process of slashing public spending, cutting corporate taxes, opening up state bodies to private investment and profit—and driving up the exploitation of the working class. That is the meaning of “economic conservatism” and “commitment to reform”. The growth of the Australian economy over the past decade rests on factors that have nothing to do with Australian government decisions. For all of the “debate” about the economy, there has been virtually no discussion of the extent, significance and consequences of the booming resource trade with China. Yet it is the rise or fall of the Chinese economy, along with the growing financial instability in the US and the dangers of a global recession that will determine the fate of the Australian economy, not the policies of the next government … // … The present economic and social order stands indicted for its incapacity to guarantee a decent standard of living to working people, despite the huge advances in science, technology and production. The only answer to the anarchic operations of the global market, which engulfs all in its path like an uncontrollable tsunami, is to bring the world economy under the rational and planned control of humanity to provide for its social needs, rather than the profits of a few. The only social force capable of carrying out such a vast transformation—from global capitalism to global socialism—is the international working class. That is the basis of the program for which the Socialist Equality Party is fighting in the Australian 2007 election campaign … (full long text, 20 November 2007).

links:

New US President Must Review Pakistan Policy, Nov. 4, 2008;

Iraqi parliament OKs US troops for 3 more years, Nov. 27, 2008;

The Iraq Pact: A Challenge for the Anti-War Movement, Nov. 29, 2008;

Deal on Iraq Withdrawal Poses a Pentagon Challenge, Nov. 18, 2008;

‘Coalition of willing’ on retreat mission from Iraq, Nov. 29, 2008.

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