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“Those who read and support Project Censored are in the know.” —Cynthia McKinney
“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.
“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
Buy it, read it, act on it. Our future depends on the knowledge this col-lection of suppressed stories allows us.” —San Diego Review
“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
“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
“One of the most significant media research projects in the country.” —I. F. Stone
“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.
“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.)
“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
“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.
“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.
“Hot news, cold truths, utterly uncensored.” —Greg Palast
“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
“[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
“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
“[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 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

#16 “Resilient” Indian Communities Struggle to Cope with Impacts of Climate Change

The Sundarbans are a vast mangrove delta that connects India and Bangladesh along the coast of the Bay of Bengal. In Bengali, Sundarban means “beautiful forest,” and the region is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. However, as Anuradha Sengupta reported for YES! Magazine, residents of islands in the Sundarbans, such as Ghoramara, are “struggling to cope” with rising seas, erratic weather patterns, severe floods, heavy rainfall, and intense cyclones that are the consequences of global climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has warned that rising sea levels mean that areas like the Sundarbans will, in Sengupta’s words, “bear the brunt” of climate change, with submerged lands, farmlands damaged by increasingly saline soils, homes swept away, livelihoods destroyed, and families broken apart. “The effects of global warming,” Sengupta reported, “will be most severe on those who did the least to contribute to it, and who can least afford measures to adapt or save themselves.”

Residents of the Sundarbans have typically made a living by reliance upon natural resources, deriving sustenance from small-scale farming, fishing, and honey gathering. However, with climate change, rising water levels have reduced the amount of arable land and frequent intrusion of saltwater has reduced the quality of remaining farmlands, while extreme weather conditions mean fewer flowers to sustain honey harvests.

Nevertheless, Sengupta reported, the people of the Sundarbans are “resilient.” While many of the region’s men now leave for most of the year to work for wages in urban areas on the mainland, the women have responded by planting hardy native crops, adopting integrated farming methods, and banking seeds. Many have switched from “modern high-yield” rice seeds to native grains that are saline-resistant. A West Bengal nongovernmental development organization, the Development Research Communication and Services Centre (DRCSC), provides support to families adopting sustainable agricultural practices in the face of climate change.

However, as Sengupta acknowledged, the number of those who adopt sustainable methods is “still quite low.” Aditya Ghosh, who covered the Sundarbans as a journalist between 2000 and 2004 and is now a research associate with the University of Heidelberg’s South Asia Institute, told YES! Magazine, “Years of ineffective, unplanned, and chaotic governance have made the Sundarbans a soft target for any abrupt environmental change.” In his research, Ghosh found eighty-two reported incidents of flooding, affecting more than five hundred households, between 2010 and 2015. His research also indicated that flooding and other impacts of climate change have led to a six-fold increase in marginal labor—people who work less than six months per year—from 1991 to 2012. Workers who previously had employment security have “gradually slipped into marginality,” he told YES! Magazine.

Several islands in the Sundarbans have already been completely submerged by rising sea levels. When the island of Lohachara went under in 2006, it displaced seven thousand people. As Sengupta and other journalists have reported, if scientific predictions about rising sea levels prove accurate, in fifteen to twenty-five years as many as thirteen million residents of the Sundarbans would be left homeless, “forcing a massive exodus of climate refugees.” Sengupta’s YES! Magazine report was distinctive in emphasizing the ways that residents of the Sundarbans—and especially the region’s women—are “rebuilding their lives” in the face of climate change, as well as the positive role that NGOs, such as the DRCSC, could play in helping to minimize a looming humanitarian disaster in the Bay of Bengal.

Anuradha Sengupta, “Tired of Running from the River: Adapting to Climate Change on India’s Disappearing Islands,” YES! Magazine, June 2, 2016,

Student Researcher: Caroline Yoss (College of Marin)

Faculty Evaluator: Susan Rahman (College of Marin)

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