imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Exporting corporate control

by Joe Conason Saturday, Aug. 18, 2001 at 4:25 AM

A gold-mining company with ties to the Bush family tries to muzzle a muck-raking journalist.

Globalization's glad prophets tell us that when the golden arches of McDonald's

finally encircle the world, liberty will flourish beneath them. But so far, the

evidence that open economies promote open societies is hardly conclusive -- and

today there is a case pending in the courts of the United Kingdom that suggests

a far less happy prospect: that the suppression of free speech and independent

journalism suffered in other countries may someday cross international borders

as easily as a shipment of frozen hamburger.

The plaintiffs in this case are Barrick Gold Mining, a huge firm based in

Canada, and Barrick's chairman, Peter Munk, a Toronto multimillionaire with many

powerful friends such as former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and

former U.S. President George Herbert Walker Bush. The defendants are Guardian

Newspapers, London publisher of the Guardian (which I have occasionally written

for), Britain's premier liberal daily, and the Observer, its Sunday paper.

On Nov. 26, 2000, the Observer published "The Best Democracy Money Can Buy," a

column by investigative reporter Gregory Palast (who has written for Salon) that

outlined the cozy relationship enjoyed by the Bush family and the Barrick

interests. Palast, who happens to be an American citizen, pointed out that

Barrick's U.S. subsidiary, Barrick Goldstrike, had donated over 0,000 to

Republican committees in recent years; that Goldstrike had previously obtained a

very sweet deal to mine gold on public lands in Nevada, pushed through during

the final days of George H.W. Bush's presidency; and that the former president

had landed on Barrick's payroll after leaving office, to peddle his influence

with foreign leaders in exchange for a salary and stock options.

Palast's column went on to discuss other Barrick ventures in Indonesia, Zaire

and, most controversially, Tanzania, where he mentioned a report by Amnesty

International alleging that in 1996, a company later bought by Barrick had

participated in the "extrajudicial killing" of dozens of small-scale artisanal

miners, in order to clear the Bulyanhulu gold pits, a rich site to which the

company claimed title. The story behind that alleged incident is long and

somewhat murky, but this much is clear: Several independent newspapers in

Tanzania reported in August 1996 that as many as 52 miners were buried alive

when bulldozers operated by Kahama Mining Co. Ltd., a firm later acquired by

Barrick, filled in the pits, assisted by armed troops. The miners had until then

successfully resisted KMCL's attempt to evict them from the land, a tract some

30 miles south of Lake Victoria.

Those appalling stories, since buttressed by eyewitness accounts, were denied by

the repressive Tanzanian government, which had sided with the company against

the local miners in a legal dispute over the property, and later refused to

mount an official inquest into the charges. Survivors and volunteers were

reportedly prevented by the government from attempting to exhume bodies from the


While steadfastly repeating similar denials that anyone was killed when the

miners were removed from Bulyanhulu, Barrick disowns any responsibility for the

disputed events of 1996 because the Canadian company didn't acquire KMCL until

three years later in 1999.

The company's own documents indicate, however, that its officials were well

aware that its prospective subsidiary was using aggressive methods to rid the

site of thousands of native miners. Those so-called artisanal prospectors had to

be removed to facilitate extraction of what is now conservatively estimated to

be billion worth of gold ore.

In a speech to shareholders last May, Barrick's president and CEO boasted that

"prior to our acquisition, we followed the progress at Buly for five years,

remaining in close contact with the [KMCL] senior management team. We did our

homework -- and when the opportunity presented itself, we moved quickly to

acquire the property. But we did it with discipline: For an attractive price,

and only after we became comfortable with Tanzania as a place to invest."

A Barrick corporate spokesman was unavailable for comment. In court filings,

Barrick representatives have suggested that the atrocity charges were fabricated

by local miners and political opponents of the multinational in Tanzania.

The explosive charges of mass murder reached Amnesty International, which

reported briefly on the incident in its 1997 report on world human rights and in

its two subsequent annual reports. Under pressure from Barrick and the Tanzanian

government, Amnesty revised its report on Bulyanhulu in its 2000 report. Because

the Tanzanian authorities have persistently stonewalled Amnesty's request to

conduct an investigation, the human rights organization's rules prevent it from

saying that the charges have been verified. But human rights lawyers and

parliamentary dissidents in Tanzania provided Palast with evidence of the live

burials that he found compelling.

How many miners, if any, may have died to make the Bulyanhulu mine safe for

Western exploitation remains unknown. But Palast was certainly accurate in

citing Amnesty's original reports. Unfortunately for him, though, there is no

right under British libel law to repeat previously published material, as there

is in most instances under American law.

Almost immediately after Palast's column appeared, Barrick
Report this post as:

Local News

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 12:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 12:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 4:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J10 11:58PM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M30 10:20PM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 12:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 1:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 2:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 3:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 2:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 1:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 1:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 4:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 1:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A26 10:37PM


lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Paraphysique de martyrologie J17 8:00AM

[NEW HOT] World Soccer King Hack Coins and Gems J17 4:32AM

Asian Countries:Cambodia, Vietnam, N. Korea do not permit unlawful immigration J16 8:06PM

Children Incorporated Earns 4-Star Rating on Charity Navigator J16 11:24AM

Democratic Socialists of America J14 4:57PM

Leonard Peltier Non Violent Native American Political Prisoner since 1970's J14 4:18PM

Paraphysique miscellanées de l'aggiornamento J14 12:54AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Cleanup J13 4:14PM

FBI Investigated LA County Sheriff Baca,Why Not Hank Skinner's Persecution? J13 3:52PM

Updated Partial List Of Famous Vegetarians, Vegans, & Fruitarians J13 2:59PM

The Shortwave Report 07136/18 Listen Globally! J12 4:36PM

Social Policy as Social Infrastructure J12 3:38AM

Vol I: 84 Varieties Of GOP Election Fraud J12 1:50AM

Texas Can Call it An Execution,But It is A State Sponsored Murder of Hank Skinner.. J11 6:48PM

June 2018 Honduras coup update J11 3:35PM

Maria Estrada doubles down on racist support J11 1:40PM

New York Women in Film & Television Announces 2018 NYWIFT Ha Phuong Scholarship Recipients J11 10:14AM

Trapps de la domination, trapps de l'aliénation J11 1:31AM

Please Work For The Defeat Of Brett Kavanaugh And Why J09 8:54PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 1:27PM

Transinhumanisme ( transe inhumanisme ) J09 12:44PM

Google, World's Biggest Censor, Was Founded By The CIA J09 10:25AM

For a World Free of Nuclear Risks J09 8:29AM

Corrupt CDC Ignores Meat Fish Recalls J09 4:55AM

The (Temporary) End of Globalization J09 3:03AM

Aternatives to Abortions such as Plan B the pill, condoms and IUD J08 4:03PM

U.S Congressional Legal Minds Know Better Than Allowing Texas To Murder Hank Skinner J08 3:37PM

ACLU in many US states defends in court KKK and American Nazis Sometimes for Money J07 11:28PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy