It is July 4th. Enjoy the fireworks (if there are fireworks where you are)!

International Politics

Overall

- In the past three years there has been a 70 percent increase in the number of car bombings and suicide bombings worldwide

- The UK government had covert plans to train Syrian rebels to go against Bashar al-Assad although it was scrapped after American opposition

Middle East

- As the Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister expresses regret on joining Nouri al-Maliki’s government, al-Maliki states he will continue to seek a third term as Prime Minister

- Militants from the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant, meanwhile, are selling crude oil and getting a lot of money in return

- Natasha Lennard: “The Danger of Conflating Criticism of Israel with Anti-Semitism

- Journalist Roqayah Chamseddine writes on the value “native informants” in Iraq again have amid the crisis

- The funeral for a Palestinian teenager murdered by Israeli extremists drew thousands 

- Ali Abunimah: “Israel attempting cover up over Jerusalem teen’s killing, family say

Africa 

- After losing to France, Nigeria removed officials of its soccer federation and arrested the president of the federation. FIFA warned Nigeria to reinstate them or face a ban.

Asia and Oceania

- Chinese police arrested leaders among the protesters in Hong Kong going against the government’s rule

Europe

- The German government arrested a German spy for allegedly spying for the United States as well; Germany called in the U.S. ambassador  to discuss the matter

- Newly obtained documents found Ikea gave money to the Romanian secret police under communist rule

Latin America, Caribbean and Canada

- Dave Zirin: “Deadly World Cup Legacy Continues as Overpass Collapses In Brazilian Host City” Dave Zirin will be here tomorrow on FDL Book Salon.

- Gallup: 55 percent of Brazilians believe the World Cup will be harmful for the economy

Surveillance Planet

- Hillary Clinton: I believe Edward Snowden should return to the U.S. in order to make his case; Clinton, the ever capitalist reactionary, uses a red herring as it’s the information he presented that should be debated. Classic!

Financial Matters

- Professor William Black briefly talks about the recent fine against BNP Paribas on The Real News

- Thom Hartmann: “Why We Might Be On the Verge of Another Financial Crash

- Katrina vanden Heuvel: “On This Fourth of July, Meet Your Unpatriotic Corporations

Labor’s a-Brewing

- Members of the Media Matters for America organization voted to join the SEIU as union members

- While union representation for private employees is declining, union representation for public employees is growing

Politics US

Washington USA

- President Obama: The United States has and always will be a nation of immigrants

- Journalist and cartoonist Ted Rall writes on how important it is for progressives to split with the Democratic Party

Anytown USA

- In Alburquerque, N.M., a U.S. veteran collapsed at a local VA hospital cafeteria and died as the ambulance took 20 minutes to get to him

- Historian Peter Linebaugh explains the rights we hold sacred are a result of struggle in history and there is still more to do

- New York City had its lawmakers approve $4.9 million to offer public defenders for immigrants

- In reviewing the past year up to July 4th, 2014, we have seen a system create such violence and despair that it is difficult to believe any part of July 4th

- The voiceless in America show how a country that prides itself in life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness fails to share such rights

We Don’t Need No Education

- Students and faculty at Cooper Union in New York City decided to take legal action against the administration to ensure free tuition

Health, Hunger and Homelessness

- Hearing loss is on the rise among younger Americans as a result of new technologies and environmental changes

The Second Sex

- Despite a jury finding a British man guilty of raping a girl who was asleep, a judge ruled the individual was not a “classic rapist” but a person who “lost control”; He still is a rapist, there is no moving around it

- The recent Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius decision shows how the idea of “land of the free” for women is untrue

- In what screams as a reactionary’s July 4th, the Supreme Court stated it was alright for a Christian college to be exempt from paying for contraception

Planet Earth

- With a wildfire in California continuing, the terrible drought in the state was classified as “extreme” in 80 percent of California by the U.S. Drought Monitor

- Recyclable smartphones are being used in Africa to help protect forests

- In what is certainly a surprise, the agricultural system we currently have emits more carbon emissions than our use of fossil fuels

- A class-action lawsuit was brought against BP over the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill by investors

Mixed Bag

- An underestimate, but if you have a flag nearby be sure to return it to your nearest retailer or throw it down a well. “U.S. Flag Recalled After Causing 143 Million Deaths

- Another great article by Louis Proyect on the latest sectarian document by the International Socialist Organization against Socialist Alternative

Break Time

- Star Spangled Banner