Berlin protest slams industrialized farming | News | DW.DE | 19.01.2013

Advocates of ecological, small-scale farming at their rally in Berlin on Saturday carried banners declaring themselves “fed up,” while German Agriculture Minister Ilse Aigner hosted 80 politicians with agriculture-related portfolios at an international summit on the trade fair site.

Hubert Weiger, the head of BUND, the German branch of Friends of the Earth, told an estimated 25,000 people at the protest rally near the chancellery that the “Green Week” exhibition – just kilometers away – amounted to consumer deception.

“The pleasant appearance of the trade fair displays hides million-fold suffering of animals, an exorbitant usage of antibiotics for fattening animals, and an enormous environmental strain from mass livestock production,” said Weiger.

He demanded that the German government provide incentives for dwindling family-size farms instead of “farm factories” that, he said, failed to focus on the welfare of animals, farmers and the environment.

Protestors also highlighted the impact of “price dumping” on the world’s small-scale farmers and recent trends such as dramatic declines in bee populations.

via Berlin protest slams industrialized farming | News | DW.DE | 19.01.2013.

The Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN) / How It All Began: Pre-1979 Origins of Afghanistan’s Conflict

One important dimension of the conflict, however, has often been ignored: the domestic factors that had undermined Afghanistan’s internal stability of 40 years, between Muhammad Zaher Shah’s accession to power in 1933 and Sardar (Prince) Muhammad Daud’s coup d’état on 17 July 1973. Daud’s coup set an example, leading to a succession of violent power changes which, in turn, drew the Soviet Union into the conflict and triggered its military intervention six years later.

via The Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN) / How It All Began: Pre-1979 Origins of Afghanistan’s Conflict.

Dengue and cholera – we can protect ourselves better by living with nature and taking care of our communities properly

Through the Eye of the Needle

When I was a child, I heard my grandmother talk about the hard times of cholera, and of how her family had escaped from this terrible disease. That was all I knew of this plaque, pure history.

And it turns out that now, in the 21st century, in “my beloved planet”, that terrible word is mentioned again. After those stories told by his grandmother María, I again heard about this pandemic when I enjoyed reading the famous novel by García Márquez: Love in the Time of Cholera, passionately losing myself in his unforgettable character Florentino Ariza.

I was surprised, it’s true, that for so many years we had weathered the danger of such a plague, because our beloved island is increasingly sinking into more precarious hygienic conditions die to the apathy and neglect in all sectors, in all social spheres. Thanks to our relentless sun, we have survived some…

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