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“The staff of Project Censored presents their annual compilation of the previous year’s 25 stories most overlooked by the mainstream media along with essays about censorship and its consequences. The stories include an 813% rise in hate and anti-government groups since 2008, human rights violations by the US Border Patrol, and Israeli doctors injecting Ethiopian immigrants with birth control without their consent. Other stories focus on the environment, like the effects of fracking and Monsantos GMO seeds. The writers point out misinformation and outright deception in the media, including CNN relegating factual accounts to the “opinion” section and the whitewashing of Margaret Thatcher’s career following her death in 2013, unlike Hugo Chavez, who was routinely disparaged in the coverage following his death. One essay deals with the proliferation of “Junk Food News,” in which “CNN and Fox News devoted more time to ‘Gangnam Style’ than the renewal of Uganda’s ‘Kill the Gays’ law.” Another explains common media manipulation tactics and outlines practices to becoming a more engaged, free-thinking news consumer or even citizen journalist. Rob Williams remarks on Hollywood’s “deep and abiding role as a popular propaganda provider” via Argo and Zero Dark Thirty. An expose on working conditions in Chinese Apple factories is brutal yet essential reading. This book is evident of Project Censored’s profoundly important work in educating readers on current events and the skills needed to be a critical thinker.” -Publisher’s Weekly said about Censored 2014 (Oct.)
“In another home run for Project Censored, Censored 2013 shows how the American public has been bamboozled, snookered, and dumbed down by the corporate media. It is chock-full of ‘ah-ha’ moments where we understand just how we’ve been fleeced by banksters, stripped of our civil liberties, and blindly led down a path of never-ending war.” –Medea Benjamin, author of Drone Warfare, cofounder of Global Exchange and CODEPINK.
“At a time when the need for independent journalism and for media outlets unaffiliated with and untainted by the government and corporate sponsors is greater than ever, Project Censored has created a context for reporting the complete truths in all matters that matter. . . . It is therefore left to us to find sources for information we can trust. . . . It is in this task that we are fortunate to have an ally like Project Cen-sored.” —Dahr Jamail
“Project Censored shines a spotlight on news that an informed public must have . . . a vital contribution to our democratic process.” —Rhoda H. Karpatkin, president, Consumer’s Union
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“Project Censored is one of the organizations that we should listen to, to be assured that our newspapers and our broadcasting outlets are practicing thorough and ethical journalism.” —Walter Cronkite
“[Censored] should be affixed to the bulletin boards in every newsroom in America. And, perhaps read aloud to a few publishers and television executives.” —Ralph Nader
“[Censored] offers devastating evidence of the dumbing-down of main-stream news in America. . . . Required reading for broadcasters, journalists, and well-informed citizens.” —Los Angeles Times
“Project Censored interrogates the present in the same way that Oliver Stone and I tried to interrogate the past in our Untold History of the United States. It not only shines a penetrating light on the American Empire and all its deadly, destructive, and deceitful actions, it does so at a time when the Obama administration is mounting a fierce effort to silence truth-tellers and whistleblowers. Project Censored provides the kind of fearless and honest journalism we so desperately need in these dangerous times.” —Peter Kuznick, professor of history, American University, and coauthor, with Oliver Stone, of The Untold History of the United States
Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“Activist groups like Project Censored . . . are helping to build the media democracy movement. We have to challenge the powers that be and rebuild media from the bottom up.” —Amy Goodman
“Most journalists in the United States believe the press here is free. That grand illusion only helps obscure the fact that, by and large, the US corporate press does not report what’s really going on, while tuning out, or laughing off, all those who try to do just that. Americans–now more than ever–need those outlets that do labor to report some truth. Project Censored is not just among the bravest, smartest, and most rigorous of those outlets, but the only one that’s wholly focused on those stories that the corporate press ignores, downplays, and/or distorts. This latest book is therefore a must read for anyone who cares about this country, its tottering economy, and–most important– what’s now left of its democracy.” –Mark Crispin Miller, author, professor of media ecology, New York University.
“Censored 2014 is a clarion call for truth telling. Not only does this volume highlight fearless speech in fateful times, it connect the dots between the key issues we face, lauds our whistleblowers and amplifies their voices, and shines light in the dark places of our government that most need exposure.” –Daniel Ellsberg, The Pentagon Papers
“For ages, I’ve dreamed of a United States where Project Censored isn’t necessary, where these crucial stories and defining issues are on the front page of the New York Times, the cover of Time, and in heavy rotation on CNN. That world still doesn’t exist, but we always have Project Censored’s yearly book to pull together the most important things the corporate media ignored, missed, or botched.” –Russ Kick, author of You Are Being Lied To, Everything You Know Is Wrong, and the New York Times bestselling series The Graphic Canon.
“Project Censored brings to light some of the most important stories of the year that you never saw or heard about. This is your chance to find out what got buried.” –Diane Ravitch, author of The Death and Life of the Great American School System.
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast
“Project Censored continues to be an invaluable resource in exposing and highlighting shocking stories that are routinely minimized or ignored by the corporate media. The vital nature of this work is underscored by this year’s NSA leaks. The world needs more brave whistle blowers and independent journalists in the service of reclaiming democracy and challenging the abuse of power. Project Censored stands out for its commitment to such work.” —Deepa Kumar, author of Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire and associate professor of Media Studies and Middle Eastern Studies at Rutgers University
“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone

15. The Rebirth of Slavery in the Dark Heart of Sudan

Source: THE BOSTON PHOENIX Date: 6/30/95; “Africa’s Invisible Slaves: Human bondage resurfaces in the dark heart of Sudan” Author: Tim Sandler

SYNOPSIS: From mass murder in Rwanda to mass starvation in Somalia, Africa’s horrors continue to shake the world’s sensibilities. Yet, despite heightened attention to Africa’s troubles, its largest country, Sudan, still harbors the continent’s darkest secret: the rebirth of slavery.

In the last several years, pure chattel slavery-the use of people as property-has quietly re­emerged as a social institution in Sudan. And as a participant in this slave trade, Sudan’s government has good reason to make sure it remains a secret.

In an area that Sudan’s Muslim­-fundamentalist government has declared off-limits to outsiders, sto­ries of modern-day slavery are ram­pant. Despite the government’s denial of slavery, throughout the vast southern region of Sudan, where the Arab world meets black Africa, the resurgence of systematic slavery is as evident as the bloated stomachs of the malnourished chil­dren. Lashing marks, branding scars, and permanent injuries on freed and escaped slaves offer vivid corroboration of their accounts of human bondage.

Sudan’s Muslim-fundamentalist regime has turned the 12-year-old north/south civil war into a govern­ment-sponsored jihad against Christians, animists, and even modern Muslims. Sudan is now high on the U.S. State Depart­ment’s list of terrorist governments and the motivation for the State Department’s warning against travel in Sudan by foreigners is clear.

While the number of slaves in Sudan is easily in the thousands, a more precise figure is difficult to calculate. A U.N. special investi­gator reported in 1994 that in the past several years tens of thousands of black Christians and animists had been abducted from southern Sudan and the Nuba Mountains and brought to the north.

Thousands of young boys are routinely rounded up by the gov­ernment forces and taken to cul­tural-cleansing camps where they are beaten, renamed, forced to convert to Islam, and often com­pelled to fight on the front lines against their own people in the south.

Slaves in southern Sudan are sometimes sold openly in “cattle markets,” a term that illustrates the value Arab traders place on the humans exchanged there. Women and children are sold for as little as 200 to 300 Sudanese pounds in the Nuba Mountains area.

An accurate estimate of the number of slaves in Sudan is ham­pered by the government’s place­ment of severe limitations on travel into the country. Officially­ sanctioned travel outside the Khartoum area is rare, and all for­eigners are supposed to register with police.

Unfortunately, slave labor is not limited to the Sudan, nor even Africa. The Anti-Slavery Society, of Australia, charged that between 104 million and 146 million chil­dren-some as young as four-are forced to work in appalling condi­tions to make consumer products for Western nations (Associated Press, 9/19/95). The Society said that the children, with an esti­mated 73 million to 115 million of them in India alone, are making car parts, jewelry, clothing, toys, food, fireworks, chemicals and other goods in sweatshops. Other nations cited by the group as tolerating forced child labor were Pakistan, Nepal, Philippines, China, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Thailand, and Sri Lanka.

SSU Censored Researcher: Justin Twergo

COMMENTS: Boston Phoenix writer Tim Sandler reported that the mass media virtually ignored the resurgence of slavery in Sudan. “I say ignored because a good many of the major news outlets, including network television, are now aware of the situation (the Phoenix sent its story to many of them). Still, there has been no follow-up.”

“Given America’s history of slavery,” Sandler continued, “it would be difficult to imagine that wider exposure to modern-day slavery in Sudan would not be greeted with widespread outrage. Outrage often translates to action, and public exposure could well prompt U.S. political leaders to take meaningful measures to address the problem.

“Clearly, the general silence about Sudan’s slavery allows the Sudanese government, which is involved in the slave trade, to con­tinue to do so with impunity. Indeed, Sudanese government offi­cials continue to assert there is no such thing as slavery in their country.”

Sandler notes that this is a polit­ically thorny issue “because you have black Muslims participating in the enslavement of black animists and Christians. Unlike the black­-and-white dynamic of South Africa in the 1970s and “80s, there is a less apparent racial divide. In the U.S., that creates a significant political dilemma for political leaders who may have both Muslim and Christian constituencies.”

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