Naomi Klein

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Capitalism Vs. The Climate

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The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism

Articles by Naomi Klein

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Addicted To Risk

Naomi gave a TED talk at the first-ever TEDWomen conference on December 8, 2010, in Washington, DC. Here is video and text of the speech.



I just did something I’ve never done before. I spent a week at sea on a research vessel. I’m not a scientist but I was accompanying a remarkable scientific team from the University of South Florida that has been tracking BP’s oil in the Gulf of Mexico.


G20 Trials and the War on Activism

On the evening of Thursday, November 11, Naomi made a special appearance in Toronto with Juno award-winning recording artist Hawksley Workman at a fundraiser for the legal defence costs of G20 arrestees.

Here is video and text of Naomi's speech at the fundraiser. A correction from Naomi: "At one point in the speech I make reference to reports of rape in detention. The reports were of rape threats. I misread my text and apologize."


Watch live streaming video from rabbletv at livestream.com


So we are here to raise money.

But more fundamentally, we are here because we know what happened in this city during the G20 and the wrong people are on trial for it.

There are police officers that should be facing charges for assault and harassment -- and so should any supervisors who enabled or covered over those abuses.

Sticking the Public with the Bill for the Bankers' Crisis

Published in The Globe and Mail

My city feels like a crime scene and the criminals are all melting into the night, fleeing the scene. No, I’m not talking about the kids in black who smashed windows and burned cop cars on Saturday.

I’m talking about the heads of state who, on Sunday night, smashed social safety nets and burned good jobs in the middle of a recession. Faced with the effects of a crisis created by the world’s wealthiest and most privileged strata, they decided to stick the poorest and most vulnerable people in their countries with the bill.

The G20: A Global Menace Invented by Larry Summers

Here in Toronto we are getting the predictable lectures about how burning cop cars and smashed Starbucks outlets distract attention from “legitimate” protestors and NGOs with “important messages.” It’s a nice theory, except for the fact that the non-violent protests were being completely ignored by the international press until stuff started burning.

But they were taking place all over Toronto, timed with the G20 summit. This is a speech I delivered on Friday night, at a terrific event organized by the Council of Canadians. It is about why the G20 deserves to be derailed, interrupted and, ultimately, shut down.

Watch live streaming video from rabbletv at livestream.com

Gulf Oil Spill: A Hole in the World

Published in The Guardian.

Everyone gathered for the town hall meeting had been repeatedly instructed to show civility to the gentlemen from BP and the federal government. These fine folks had made time in their busy schedules to come to a high school gymnasium on a Tuesday night in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, one of many coastal communities where brown poison was slithering through the marshes, part of what has come to be described as the largest environmental disaster in US history.

BP and US Government 'Command Center' Guarded by Company From Afghan Embassy Hazing Scandal

Published in The Nation

I just got off the phone with my friends Naomi Klein, author of "The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism," and her husband Avi Lewis, host of al Jazeera English's popular program Fault Lines. They are traveling around the devastated US Gulf reporting on the horrific disaster caused by BP's massive oil spill. They described to me a run in that they just had with the private security company Wackenhut, which apparently has been hired to do the perimeter security for the "Deepwater Horizon Unified Command." The "Unified Command" is run jointly by BP and several US government agencies including the US Coast Guard, the Department of Defense, the Department of State and the Department of Homeland Security.

The Other Debt Crisis: Climate Debt

With melting glaciers dramatically threatening its water supply, it is no surprise that Bolivia is emerging as a leader of the global South in the fight against climate change. And its climate negotiators have become eloquent advocates for a new, big idea that is reinvigorating the climate justice movement: "climate debt." In this first, in-depth television segment on the idea of climate debt, Avi Lewis asks what the historical polluters of the global North owe the poor countries of the South -- and how such an honest reckoning could encourage the global, technological collaboration demanded by our climate crisis. Naomi Klein acted as a consultant for the piece, which also includes great coverage of the Cochabamba climate conference and a stunning view of Bolivia's epic and imperiled landscape. Watch the new edition of Fault Lines here.

A New Climate Movement in Bolivia

Published in The Nation

Cochabamba, Bolivia

It was 11 am and Evo Morales had turned a football stadium into a giant classroom, marshaling an array of props: paper plates, plastic cups, disposable raincoats, handcrafted gourds, wooden plates and multicolored ponchos. All came into play to make his main point: to fight climate change, "we need to recover the values of the indigenous people."

Yet wealthy countries have little interest in learning these lessons and are instead pushing through a plan that at its best would raise average global temperatures 2 degrees Celsius. "That would mean the melting of the Andean and Himalayan glaciers," Morales told the thousands gathered in the stadium, part of the World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth. What he didn't have to say is that the Bolivian people, no matter how sustainably they choose to live, have no power to save their glaciers.

Open Letter to Berkeley Students on their Historic Israeli Divestment Bill

On March 18, continuing a long tradition of pioneering human rights campaigns, the Senate of the Associated Students of the University of California, Berkeley (ASUC) passed "A Bill In Support of UC DIVESTMENT FROM WAR CRIMES." The historic bill resolves to divest ASUC's assets from two American companies, General Electric and United Technologies, that are "materially and militarily supporting the Israeli government's occupation of the Palestinian territories"—and to advocate that the UC, with about $135 million invested in companies that profit from Israel’s illegal actions in the Occupied Territories, follow suit.

Protecting Israel’s Lawlessness with Spying and Smear Campaign

A while ago, the Reut Institute, arguably Israel's most influential think tank, published a very controversial report about "hubs of delegitimization." It attempted to equate tactics of non-violent resistance—like the growing movement to use Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) to force Israel to comply with international law—with a military campaign to destroy the state of Israel.

Most worrying, the report explicitly urged Israeli intelligence agencies like Mossad to take unspecified action against peace activists using entirely legal methods: "Neither changing policy nor improving public relations will suffice...Faced with a potentially existential threat, Israel must treat it as such by focusing its intelligence agencies on this challenge; allocating appropriate resources; developing new knowledge; designing a strategy, executing it.” The think tank also called on the Israeli government to “sabotage network catalysts” – defined as key players in the “delegitimization network.”

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