* * *
2016 suppressed news
concerned with the prevention of genocide
by j. b. gerald
2017October 19, 2017"to those who didn't understand"
Canada, Indigenous updates: fighting a tuberculosis rate 270 times the national average for people born in Canada who aren't Aboriginal (statistics from 2015 - and since this is an emergency it is unclear why the statistics aren't more up to date), the federal government and Inuit leadership have finally started a program to deal with the disease. Inuit sources say this is the first time Canada has worked with their people to eliminate tuberculosis. There are current TB control programs in some Inuit areas but they weren't set up to eradicate the disease. In 2013 the Inuit tuberculosis rate was only a disastrous 186 times that of the native born non-Aboriginal so the TB rate among the Inuit has become substantially worse (see previous). In 2012 the Harper government shut down the National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO) which kept 60 million dollars worthy of records and research on Aboriginal health issues. Tuberculosis remains a disproportionate threat to all Canadian First peoples (see previous). Then in Saskatchewan a group of doctors working with HIV and AIDS patients called for a state of emergency. That was in 2016. They wanted the province, the federal government and the Indigenous leaders to counter HIV and AIDS together and they asked for antiretroviral treatment for all those infected in the province. The HIV rate in Saskatchewan is reported as triple the national average. CBC reporting notes nearly twenty times as many cases per year as a decade ago. Among 170 newly reported cases in the province, 79% are among those who consider themselves Indigenous. On reserves the rate is 11 times the national rate. The current rate of HIV positive at Ahtahkakoop (3.5%) is slightly under the HIV rates for Guinea-Bissau (3.74%) or Central African Republic (3.82%). Canada's administrative medical officer for Aboriginal people in Saskatchewan blames the high rates on increased testing. However, HIV is spreading through increasing use of intravenous drugs with shared needles, a problem that could be partly resolved by dispensing free needles. The CBC reports that there are also reserves where the chiefs don't allow HIV testing and treatment. The costs are a problem which hold back rational government funding and treatment. The doctors' group in Saskatchewan estimated cost of medication for a case of HIV is $450,000 with lifetime expenses reaching $1.4 million. This may explain why the government is responding much too slowly. But within a perspective of the Convention on Genocide medical statistics may indicate a prolonged wish by one Canadian government after another to do with fewer Aboriginal people. This repressed awareness is made clear in the recent suit of two Indigenous women against the government, the province, the health region and specific doctors, for forced sterilisation. One of the women was tricked into sterilisation, the other sterilised after refusing consent. The case may develop into a large class action to represent at least twenty Aboriginal women forcibly sterilised through racial profiling. The Saskatoon Health Region has apologized and the region's policy on sterilisation is no longer in effect but the women have lost a sacred right and Canada's government is reluctant to learn what that means. Genocide warning. Partial sources online: "Inuit, Ottawa launch task force to fight tuberculosis in the North," Nick Murray, Oct 8, 2017, CBC News; "Saskatchewan's HIV rate highest in Canada, up 800% in 1 region," Alex Soloducha, Oct 12, 2017, CBC News; "HIV rates on Sask. reserves higher than some African nations," Geoff Lee, June 3, 2015, CBC News; "Sask. doctors call for state of emergency over HIV rates," Courtney Markewich, Sept. 19, 2016, CBC News; "Sask. Indigenous women file lawsuit claiming coerced sterilization," Alex Soloducha, Oct.10, 2017, CBC News; "Canada: why aren’t conditions of life for First Peoples a national emergency?" J. B. Gerald, March 28, 2016, nightslantern.ca.
October 18, 2017
U.S.: October 12th the U.S. announced its withdrawal from UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization). UNESCO attempts to coordinate these areas internationally while seeing to it that all the children and citizens have access to a good education which UNESCO considers a basic human right, and enjoy a diverse culture that respects various heritages, and benefit from scientific progress, and "enjoy full freedom of expression; the basis of democracy, development and human dignity." After the U.S. withdrew Israel withdrew as well. The U.S. stopped paying its yearly support dues for UNESCO in 2011, and owes an accumulated 500 million dollars of arrears. Both the U.S. and Israeli Ambassadors to the UN suggested that the reason for withdrawal rests with UNESCO's lack of support for Israel in heritage disputes between Israel and Palestine. No one suggests that both the U.S. and Israel may have breeched the genocide convention (the U.S. through genocide against the people of Iraq, Israel through genocide of Palestinians). UNESCO is a strong supporter of educational programs concerned with the Holocaust and Convention on Genocide, globally, identifying the concept of culture, progress, civilization, with a rejection of racism and the hatreds engendered by warfare. In this sense UNESCO is anti-fascist, a proponent of freedom of expression globally, and a force for peace. As noted in UNESCO's response to the withdrawals: "The American poet, diplomat and Librarian of Congress, Archibald MacLeish penned the lines that open UNESCO’s 1945 Constitution: 'Since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defences of peace must be constructed.'" In 2017 MacLeish would have spelled out "men and women." Ignoring the peoples' losses and this additional challenge to world peace, The New York Post praises the withdrawal, sees UNESCO's "flagrant anti-Israel bias" as an attempt to "eradicate Israel from world culture," and supports taking further punitive action. Partial sources online: "Statement by Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO, on the occasion of the Withdrawal by the United States of America from UNESCO," Oct. 12, 2017, UNESCO; "U.S. and Israel to withdraw from UN's cultural, educational agency," Thomson Reuters, Oct 12, 2017, CBC News;"Introducing UNESCO," current, www.unesco.org; "Exiting UNESCO was the right thing to do," Post Editorial Board, October 12, 2017, The New York Post.; "U.S. Will Withdraw From Unesco, Citing Its 'Anti-Israel Bias'," Gardiner Harris and Steven Erlanger, Oct. 12, 2017, The New York Times.
Democratic Republic of Congo: the term of the Congo's President Kabila ended in December 2016. He refused to hold free elections and step down. The terms of the provincial government representatives and parliament's similarly expired. Violence broke out in parts of the Congo which remain held by insurgents. The violence was eased by negotiations in which Kabila agreed to hold elections and cede power before the end of 2017 (see previous). But he has refused again, in that the electoral commission (CENI) says it will be impossible to register the voters and hold elections before April 2019. Of an expected 123 million dollars from international donors the Commission has receive only 6%. Aside from insurgent groups a powerful youth movement is attempting to hold Kabila to his word. In September a two day general strike was followed by fears of increased violence. Since 2016, 5000 people have lost their lives and 1.4 million have been displaced by insurrection in the central Congo province of Kasai. Active militia are also noted in the eastern borderlands which is historically the region of mass deaths. See previous. The Red Cross notes seven million Congolese in an emergency requiring humanitarian assistance. On October 16th when the Democratic Republic of the Congo was elected to the UN's Human Rights Council, the British Ambassador to the UN found it disappointing, the U.S. Ambassador found it hurt the Council's credibility, and Human Rights Watch found it a "slap in the face" to the DRC government's victims. Both ambassadors of countries praised for the human rights of their white populations and middle classes, overlooked the roll NATO nations continue to play in the oppression of the Congo's people. See previous. The driving force of the DRC's unrest is the acquisition of natural resources by foreign corporations. U.S. and U.K. foreign policies serve these corporations rather than the Congolese people or our own peoples. Historically the only elected Congolese leaders were Joseph Kasa-Vubu and Patrice Lumumba. Background: "Vive Patrice Lumumba (Vicky Longomba) - African Jazz 1960". Partial sources online: "DR Congo protest to oust Kabila," Sept.8, 2017, Deutsche Welle; "No Congo election until mid-2019, vote commission says, angering opposition," Patient Ligodi and Aaron Ross, Oct. 11, 2017, Reuters; "Postponed Congo presidential vote further delayed until 2019," Oct. 11, 2017 Deutsche Welle; "DR Congo elected to U.N. rights council; Britain, U.S. unhappy," Reuters, Oct. 16, 2017, africa-news; "DR Congo Kasai violence displaces 850,000 children," July 28, 2017, BBC News.
October 10, 2017
Canada: Freedom of expression includes not saying what you don't want to. So these updates which may give some insight to 'truth management' in Canada start out with the journalist's right to protect his/her sources...(more "On Hiding Truth in Canada: some updates).
October 7, 2017
Myanmar: update - Newsweek reports that Rohingya who have tried to post information about the crimes against their people, have been blocked and censored by Facebook. Facebook ties the Rohingya as a people to a militant group which has attempted to counter the slaughter and exile of Rohingya villagers; increasingly designated as "terrorists", the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) is blamed for attacks on Buddhists, Hindus, and border posts. This blaming helps justify military and government crimes against the Rohingya as a people. Attempts to silence Rohingya allow crimes against humanity and war crimes to be hidden from the public. The ethnic cleansing of Myanmar's Rohingya (over 515,000 have recently escaped to Bangladesh) is judged a genocide by Rome-based The Permanent People’s Tribunal (PPT) on Myanmar which held its opening sessions March 6 and 7, 2017, in London and concluded in Kuala Lumpur Sept. 18-22. Subsequently Prof. Yair Auron noted in Haaretz that by supplying the government of Myanmar with weapons Israel's government is turning its citizens into criminals. Myanmar maintains to the UN that "there is no ethnic cleansing and no genocide in Myanmar”. The government of Myanmar continues to block the UN and Red Cross humanitarian relief efforts intended for Rohingya in the Rakhine Province. Myanmar is extinguishing its Rohingya people. Ongoing genocide warning. Previous. Partial sources online: "Why is Facebook Censoring Rohingya Accounts of the Genocide?" Albert Fox Cahn, Oct. 2, 2017, Newsweek; "Canada passes law to protect whistleblowers and journalists’ confidential sources," Tamara Khandaker, Oct. 4, 2017, Vice News Canada; "Facebook Bans Rohingya Terror Group Behind Current Myanmar Crisis, Twitter Not So Much," Patrick Poole, Sept. 25, 2017, PJ News; "Facebook is 'silencing' Rohingya Muslim reports of 'ethnic cleansing'," Samuel Osborne, Sept. 19, 2017, Independent; "Tribunal finds Myanmar guilty of genocide," Mark Tilly, Sept. 29, 2017, Khmer Times; "Israel, Partner in Genocides," Yair Auron, Oct. 2, 2017, Haaretz; "Facebook bans Rohingya group's posts as minority faces 'ethnic cleansing' ," Julia Carrie Wong, Michael Safi and Shaikh Azizur Rahman, Sept. 20,2017, theguardian; "Myanmar tells UN: 'There is no ethnic cleansing and no genocide' of Rohingya," Oliver Holmes, Sept. 29,2017, >i>theguardian; "UN fears further exodus of Muslim Rohingya from Myanmar," Thomson Reuters, Oct. 6, 2017, CBC News.
September 24, 2017
U.S. It isn't suppressed news that President Trump announced to the United Nations, "The United States has great strength and patience, but if it is forced to defend itself or its allies, we will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea." It isn't mentioned in the mainstream media that obliteration of North Korea, by nuclear weapons or saturation bombing and missiling would be a war crime and violation of the Convention against Genocide. We have seen what U.S. forces and their allies can do in the bombing of Iraq 'into the stone age'. The President shows intent with no moderation in this threat to destroy a national group. The Convention offers no statutory limitation for this crime. In the unacceptable event President Trump obliterates North Korea all who cooperate with the military action will be complicit in a war crime too terrible for rational minds to consider. All nations of the world could either accept U.S. hegemony and inevitable enslavement, or assure the end of this 'tactic'. The U.S. threat of world rule by nuclear obliteration of civilian populations began with the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The U.N.'s Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons outlawing all nuclear weapons opened for signing September 20th and so far is signed by 53 nations with ratifications as well by three. The U.S. threats occasion a genocide warning for the people of North Korea as a national group. The Democratic People's Republic of Korea has stated that it seeks nuclear power as parity with the U.S. but indicated no wish to destroy Americans as a people. Partial sources online: "Trump has made 'our rockets' visit' to U.S. mainland inevitable, North Korean foreign minister says," Thomson Reuters, Sept. 23, 2017, CBC News; "Trump Threatens a Genocide," David Marks, Sept. 23, 2017, Consortiumnews.com; "Here's what could happen if North Korea detonated a hydrogen bomb," Brandie Weikle, Sept. 23, 2017, CBC News; "Full text: Trump's 2017 U.N. speech transcript," Politico Staff, Sept. 19, 2017, Politico; "Amid Tensions with North Korea, 51 Countries Sign Ban on Nuclear Weapons Despite U.S. Opposition," Amy Goodman, Sept. 22, 2017, Democracy Now.A note on Article II: in a recent contribution to genocide scholarship James Loeffler writing about the early Zionism of Raphael Lemkin (author of the Convention on Genocide) notes the importance to Lemkin of "national" groups. I would note these are placed before "ethnical, racial or religious" groups in the Convention's text, but ignored in contemporary appraisals of genocide (There has been no successful prosecution under the Convention for the attempts to destroy the people of Yugoslavia as a national group, or of Iraq, or Libya). Loeffler quotes Lemkin to say "but it is a fact that during the Nuremberg trials the Nazi arch criminals defended themselves by saying that the extermination of nations (as opposed to on the basis of race, religion, or language) is not a crime according to international law!" "Becoming Cleopatra: the forgotten Zionism of Raphael Lemkin," James Loeffler, Journal of Genocide Research, vol 19 no 3 September 2017, Routledge Taylor & Francis Group.
so much changes in a hundred years
ago there was an exhuberance of white
taking tribal war to a world stage millions
against millions then millions died in russia
europe japan northern sands of africa
as though we wanting to be like our gods
wanted all others to fear this
terrible blood song of war which was
strange to reason strange to lovers
workers in fields farmers fathers
mothers honest sharers of clear winters
full foliage heat of
who would want war
when does it get better
or have we always been villagers
raising family while they among us
counter what for each is a gift
of time to breathe in beauty
and they didn't understand
insisting on death
from river with lights (2005) by john bart geraldIn his early book, Night, Elie Wiesel recounts his arrival as a child at Auschwitz. A young Polish kapo of his barracks welcomes the new work group: "Comrades, you're in the concentration camp of Auschwitz. There's a long road of suffering ahead of you. But don't lose courage. You've already escaped the gravest danger: selection [those selected as sick or weak were placed in the gas chambers]. So now, muster your strength, and don't lose heart. We shall all see the day of liberation. Have faith in life. Above all else, have faith. Drive out despair, and you will keep death away from yourselves. Hell is not for eternity. And now, a prayer - or rather, a piece of advice: let there be comradeship among you. We are all brothers, and we are all suffering the same fate. The same smoke floats over all our heads. Help one another. It is the only way to survive. - Elie Wiesel, translated from the French (Editions de Minuit, 1958) by Stella Rodway (Hill and Wang, 1960).
September 19, 2017 U.S. Myanmar Zagreb Croatia
U.S.: given the thorough covert infiltration of extreme right wing U.S. movements since the early 1960's, it's likely any far-right U.S. actions or provocations originate from within the U.S. government or its corporate partners. A complicit media provide a forum for small numbers of extremists. This deprives poor white people in the U.S. of a voice, or any voice equivalent to Black and Chicano civil rights leaders advancing the causes of their people and all groups of the poor. As a means of controlling the 'white' masses, the construct of 'white power' is identified with negative images of Nazis, supremacists, the KKK, racism. As the long history of white supremacy in the U.S. is stirred for current political gains the underlying inequality and brutal oppression of minorities of color mock U.S. national and international declarations of rights. The historical poverty of large sections of the U.S. white population provides an ongoing group disenfranchised by the politicians who look like them. Their human rights to health care and social services are stripped away not because of their color but their shared poverty. All that poverty, for the profits of corporations which sustain those who have wealth and a system of temporary privilege for the middle classes. The concerns of white America are tripped into parodies of Christianity and war movies, its humanity expunged from literature and university classes. The concerns, addressed prior to WWII, after the war were stripped from the poor of America by anti-Communism. Any voice concerned with middle America's poor and any note of socialism damned liberation theology, destroyed a natural development of rural Christianity toward community care for everyone, oppressed portions of a white majority with poverty and shunted an anger at the injustices of profit, into racism against one minority group after another, the extreme racism resulting from power's program of divide and conquer. There was once an incredible innocence among American whites before the instilled fear of Communism ripped love out of the nation's throat. A passage from James Agee's Let Us Now Praise Famous Men (Houghton Mifflin, 1939 & 1940) - Agee, a Harvard educated writer on assignment for New York's Vanity Fair was staying with families of sharecroppers in Alabama; he describes:"Mrs. Woods in Cookstown: She stands a little apart from everyone in the dark drugstore waiting until the doctor shall be ready to attend to her abscessed tooth, while the men at the soda fountain are turned and watch her. she wears no hat, nor stockings, nor shoes. Her dress is made at home of thin pillowslip cotton, plain at the throat, cut deep for nursing, without sleeves, reaching a little below her knees, belted in with a belt of narrow glazed cracked scarlet leather, all edges of the material frayed, a deep tear along the back, another through which her right knee shows, the design of the whole very much that of the plainest sort of nightgown, the whole fabric a welter of sweat and dirt. She rests her weight on one foot and studies the other while they look at her. She is noticeably though not yet heavily pregnant. She wears a 'slip' beneath this dress but the materials of both are so thin that her dark sweated nipples are stuck to them and show through, and it is at her nipples, mainly, that the men keep looking. It is thus also that she is dressed on sundays."Or one of Mrs Gudger's hats carefully placed in a drawer..."I am fairly sure it was her wedding hat, made for her, perhaps as a surprise, by her mother. She was sixteen then; her skin would have been white, and clear of wrinkles, her body and its posture and her eyes even more pure than they are today; and she would have been happy, and confident enough in her beauty, to wear it without fear;: and in her long white home made marriage dress and in that glory of a hat, with her sister Emma seven years old, marveling up at her, and her mother standing away and approving her while her image slowly turned upon itself on a blank floor and in a glass, she was such a poem as no human being shall touch."
Myanmar: an Amnesty International campaign calls it "ethnic cleansing"; Amnesty reports the military is withholding food and water from Rohingya in the Rakhine state and restricting access by humanitarian organizations. The Elie Wiesel Network, the European Antiracist Movement , and 197 European parliamentarians have asked Aung San Suu Kyi and the Burmese military to stop persecution of the Rohingya. Amnistie Internationale (Canada Francophone) reports that the Myanmar military has sewn anti-personnel mines along the border with Bangladesh, which may inhibit the passage of Rohingya people fleeing death. Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has noted that if Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi's words sustaining human rights are to have any meaning at all she must break her silence and begin to defend the human rights of Rohingya people. The Toronto Star notes the Rohingya are being"wiped off Burma's map." Aung San Suu Kyi maintains half the Rohingya Rakhine villages continue to exist. Background: 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and 5 and 6 and 7 and 8 and 9. Ongoing Genocide warning. A court could find this a genocide in progress. Partial sources online: "Appel de parlementaires d’Europe pour la protection des Rohingya ," Benjamin Abtan, Sept. 14, 2017, European Grassroots Antiracist Movement; "Les Rohingyas sont menacés par des mines antipersonnel," CyberAction, Sept. 11, 2017, Amnistie Internationale; "Myanmar: Restrictions on international aid putting thousands at risk," Sept. 4, 2017, Amnesty International (Canada); "Trudeau calls on Suu Kyi to condemn violence against Rohingya Muslims," The Canadian Press, Sep 18, 2017, CBC Radio-Canada; "Rohingya Muslims being wiped off Burma’s map," Robin McDowell The Associated Press, Sept. 19, 2017, The Toronto Star.
Zagreb Croatia: in the first days of September Croatian fascists rallied in front of an ethnically Serbian newspaper office (Novosti) and set on fire copies of the paper's current issue. Police were present and made no effort to stop the action. It's reported that the extreme right Autochthonous Croatian Party of Right (A-HSP) was protesting the removal of a Ustasa slogan on a plaque near the former Ustasa concentration camp. The Serbian government has protested to the Croatian embassy in Belgrade. Ten days later the A-HSP party's president Dražen Keleminac, again publically burned several newspaper copies to accompany a charge laid by his party against the newspaper's publisher for "Encouraging Terrorism and Spreading Ethno-Ethnic Hate." (Nacional). Two charges against Keleminac have been filed under Article 325 of Croatia's Criminal Code for public incitement against a Serbian national minority.(HINA)Historical note: The plaque is known as the Jasenovac plaque, and the Jasenovac camp known for exterminating between 77,000 and 700,000 victims; one source estimates 83,000 Serbs, Jews, Roma, anti-fascists and dissidents, while another totals the number of Ustasa victims in Jasenovac at 365,000. The Ustasa organization was fiercely Catholic, deeply nationalistic, very concerned with ethnic purity, and it welcomed Croatia's independent creation as a Nazi German puppet state. Contemporary demographics show Croatia to be over 86% Catholic, 1.47% Muslim, and with a population of over four million there are only 2500 people in the country's Jewish community. Since the Roma are said to be afraid to identify themselves as Roma statistics on Roma representation among Croatians are difficult to verify. Previous.Partial sources online: "US Condemns Croatian Neo-Nazi March for Trump," Feb. 27, 2017, Balkan Transitional Justice; "Serbia Protests After Croatian Right-Wingers Burn Newspaper," BIRN, Sept. 4, 2017, Balkaninsight.com; "Croatia Fascist Slogan Threatens to Topple Govt," Sven Milekic BIRN, Aug. 31, 2017, Balkan Transitional Justice; Ustaše - the Fascists that Made the Nazi's Look like Boyscouts," dirkdeklein, June 16, 2016, History of Sorts; "Zagreb: Keleminec burned the News again," Nacional, Sept. 12, 2017, nacional.hr; "CLEAN NEWS Keleminec reported for hate speech and violence against Serb minority," HINA, Sept. 14, 2017, nacional.hr.
September 1, 2017 Historical note Myanmar Venezuela Canada Quebec
Myanmar: see previous. Yanghee Lee, the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar, has informed the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, that "tens of thousands of Rohingya Muslims are now reported to be fleeing towards Bangladesh." She notes “I am saddened to receive reports that, while the authorities are helping Rakhine and other communities living in affected townships evacuate to safer locations, this assistance is not being extended to the Rohingya Muslims.” With overwhelming understatement she agrees with the Annan Foundation report that human rights issues in Myanmar are not properly addressed. In fact, current media reports state that entire villages of Rohingya are being burned and their inhabitants slaughtered. A continuing genocide warning. Partial sources online: "Myanmar: UN expert urges efforts to break 'worsening cycle of violence' in Rakhine," Aug. 31, 2017, United Nations News Centre; "Myanmar: UN rights chief says violence in Rakhine state 'predictable and preventable'" Aug. 29, 2019, United Nations News Centre; "Bodies of 20 Rohingya Muslims pulled from river on Bangladesh border," Rebecca Wright and Euan McKirdy, Aug. 31, 2017, ICNN; "Villagers slaughtered in Myanmar 'massacre', reports of women and children among more than 100 dead," Liam Cochrane, Aug. 31, 2017, ABC; "Video provided by a human rights monitor is said to show Chut Pyin burning down," Aug.31, 2017, ABC News.
Venezuela: see previous. UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein has issued a report on Venezuela noting 124 deaths linked to anti-government protests, excessive use of force by government forces, a policy of arbitrary arrest, military courts trying civilians, and other measures. These are in response to a coherent, organized force challenging the government extra-legally. The report makes no effort to discover the cause and funding of the anti-government movement, and risks charges of being partisan to U.S./corporate interests. OHCHR was not granted access to the country by the Venezuelan government so the report relies on information from victims, witnesses and "other sources" in the country. Partial sources online: "Human rights violations indicate repressive policy of Venezuelan authorities – UN report," Aug. 30, 2017 United Nations News Centre; "Human rights violations and abuses in the context of protests in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela from 1 April to 31 July 2017," Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), Geneva, August 2017.
Canada: the UN Committee for the Elimination of Racism and Discrimination (CERD) released its Country Report on Canada, August, 31, 2017. It welcomed: the 2016 establishment of Ontario's Anti-Racism Directorate; the House of Commons condemnation of Islamophobia among other forms of discrimination; the report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission; the resettling in 2016 of 46 thousand Syrian refugees, in 2017, the promise to resettle 25 thousand more; the restoration of health care to refugees; the participation of Indigenous and Civil society groups and the Canadian Human Rights Commission. The UN Commission suggests Canada form a new National Plan against Racism, and provide in all provinces an adequate legal framework to fight racism, and noting the under-reporting of hate crimes to provide better reporting of and means to counter hate crimes; investigate the 61% increase in hate crimes against Muslims; prevent racial profiling; include Indigenous peoples and minorities in law enforcement; reduce the over-representation of Indigenous and minorities in the prison population and courts by eliminating poverty and discrimination in sentencing; improve health care and harm reduction methods in prison; limit or abolish the use of segregation in prisons; put into effect all plans for the improvement of conditions for Indigenous peoples. Canadian Amnesty International reports the extensive critical aspects of the report such as the UN Committee for the Elimination of Racism and Discrimination (CERD) has fully recommended stopping the construction of the Site C dam in British Columbia, and to summarize briefly, has asked Canada to assure implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, to provide Aboriginal women with increased and equal access to emergency shelters, to reexamine the unsolved cases of missing and murdered Indigenous women, to respond to the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal's attempt to assure adequate child and family support on Reserves, to deal more realistically (ie. cancel) designation of the U.S. as a "safe third country" (cancellation would allow U.S. citizens to seek asylum in Canada), to forbid holding children in detention centres, to create the position of an ombudsman to explore human rights violations by Canadian corporations outside the country. Also specifically mentioned in the UN report: a recommendation that Canada implement a program advancing rights for People of African descent. The Committee found deplorable how various branches of government forced First Peoples into court battles to affirm obvious rights, and didn't honour its treaty commitments to affirm Indigenous rights. Amnesty's press release avoids dealing with the threats and discrimination against Muslim peoples. Partial sources online: "Canada Must Act on UN Recommendations," August 29, 2017, Amnesty International Canada; "Concluding observations on the twenty-first to twenty-third periodic reports of Canada," Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Aug. 31, 2017, Advanced Unedited Version, CERD/C/CAN/CO/21-23 United Nations.
Quebec: a note about current racism and discrimination in Quebec: the legal case against the principal suspect in the killing of six Muslims as they prayed in Quebec City's only mosque (see 1 and 2) is rarely noted in the media. It has brought to public attention that Quebec City has no Muslim cemetery. Permission for this purpose of land use in a nearby venue was attempted then nullified by public vote. Soon after the City announced sale of its land for a Muslim cemetery, the car of the head of the mosque was torched at night outside his home (on August 6th while note of this appeared with the CBCAugust 30). On August 20th a rally against immigration was held by La Meute, a Quebec organization on the far right identified with white supremacy. It was met by a large group of antifascist demonstrators. Among them Jaggi Singh of Montreal is a respected socially concerned veteran activist. Singled out for arrest, police knew exactly who he was; he humorously identified himself as the exceptional Nordiques hockey forward, Michel Goulet. Jaggi Singh was subsequently charged with impersonating someone other than himself, as well as obstruction. He is currently free on bail of $250 and not allowed proximity to Quebec's government buildings. The first charge is an arbitrary arrest. Applied in this case within in an extremely 'white' context, it's a threat against all people, discriminatory and a violation of law. Partial sources online: "Montreal activist Jaggi Singh freed with conditions," Claude Rivest, Aug. 30, 2017, CBC News; "Far-right group claims PR victory after duelling protests in Quebec City," Jonathan Montpetit, Aug. 20, 2017, CBC News; "'What's happening in Quebec City?': Car belonging to head of mosque torched," Stephen Smith, Aug. 30, 2017, CBC News.
August 29, 2017 Venezuela Myanmar Peru United Kingdom
In response to U.S. threats of invasion Venezuelan people have joined the country's military in self defense preparedness. The people of Venezuela remain loyal to the promises of empowerment and freedom maintained under Hugo Chavez who successfully resisted the overthrow of Venezuela's government by an oligarchy of U.S. supported rich. Their choice is still annoying The New York Times. Efforts to de-stabilize the country - which may have included the swift cancer death of Chavez, are blamed on U.S. interests which back opposition candidates, attempt to destroy the country's economy and covertly undermine the people's rights to form their own government. The difficulties of President Nicolás Maduro's rule led to an election July 30th where the people voted for a National Constituent Assembly to write a new Constitution for the country which might maintain its gains toward creating a representative democracy. Chavez vive, la lucha sigue! It would be better if the U.S. didn't interfere with other peoples' governments. Partial sources online: "US, Allies Are Terrified of Venezuela’s Participatory Democracy," Edu Montesanti, Aug. 17, 2017, teleSUR; "Exporting Chaos to Venezuela," the Editorial Board, Aug. 17, 2017, The New York Times; "86% of Venezuelans reject US military threat," RNV, Aug. 27, 2017, St. Lucia News; "‘Libya and Iraq Are Lessons’: Antigua & Barbuda Warn Against Threats to Venezuela," Aug. 25, 2017, teleSUR; "Russia, Bolivia Reject US Military Threat Against Venezuela," Aug. 16, 2017, teleSUR: "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, Chavez, The 2002 Coup."
yanmar: the Kofi Annan report (from The Rakhine Advisory Commission) was finally completed and released August 23th to the government of Myanmar, affirming the dangers to the more than a million person group of Rohingya in Myanmar's Rakhine region. The report finds this community in a human rights crisis.... The group is regarded as the largest stateless minority in the world. Night's Lantern first noted a genocide warning for the Rohingya in 2012. Recent news reports continue to note the state's attempts to exterminate the Muslim minority. Resulting Muslim resistance is referred to as increasing "radicalization" of the Rohingya. Current Muslim actions are "strongly condemned" by UN officials. In the last year alone over 70,000 Rohingya have fled across the border to Bangladesh. Bangladesh and Myanmar (Burma) each claim the Rohingya belong in the other country. Nobel Prize winning politician Aung San Suu Kyi, representing Myanmar's majority Buddhist interests, remained silent during the disenfranchisement, rape and murder of thousands, and has currently attacked the militants of the Muslim group for attempting defense of their people. Carla Bleiker in the Aug. 25th, 2017 Deutsche Welle notes evidence of the Rohingya entirely erased from a history textbook. Kofi Annan's report on the Rakhine state was requested by Aung San Suu Kyi though it is unclear why she chose the Kofi Annan Foundation for this report. Kofi Annan's record on the issue of genocide is questioned for his failure at the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Missions to respond adequately as the tragedy unfolded in Rwanda. Previous 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and 5 and 6 and 7. Partial sources online: "Kofi Annan report warns of Rakhine radicalization amid deadly Rohingya attacks," Carla Bleiker , Aug. 25, 2017, Deutsche Welle; "Myanmar troops 'open fire on Rohingya villagers'," Aug. 25, 2017, Deutsche Welle; "Pope laments "persecutions" of Muslims in Myanmar,"
ABC News; "Myanmar: UN welcomes final assessment of independent advisory panel on Rakhine state," Aug. 24, 2017, United Nations News Centre; "Top UN officials strongly condemn attacks on Myanmar security forces in Rakhine state," Aug. 25, 2017, United Nations News Centre; "Towards a Peaceful , Fair and Prosperous Future for the People of Rakhine: Final Report of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State," Advisory Commission on Rakhine State, August 2017, Kofi Annan Foundation.
eru: unwilling to accept a takeover of their rights by the Canadian mining firm Frontera Energy Corp, Amazon tribal chiefs of Block 192 in Peru have taken action, occupying company field offices and operations. According to Frontera Block 192 oil production has decreased from 10,000 gallons per day to 8,000. Indigenous peoples of the Amazon in Brazil have been subject to genocide by Brazil, and international corporate and business interests for over half a century. Peru's contemporary attempts to control the power of its Indigenous people have been primarily through genocide as practised by former dictator Alberto Fujimori's birth control practices sterilizing over 300,000 indigenous women without informed consent. Similarly Frontera has overlooked the consultation law in Peru which requires input from the indigenous peoples before development of their lands. Sterilization of Peru's Indigenous peoples dovetailed neatly with Fujimori's war on 'terrorism', the U.S. backed war against the Shining Path which had gained Indigenous support through much of rural Peru. It's hoped that corporate and government interests will not try to equate these Indigenous leaders' demands for adherence to the law, with 'terrorism', as Fujimori did. Currently, Frontera's position is that only the government could carry out prior consultation with the tribes. In the area called Block 192, previously polluted by the U.S. Occidental Petroleum Corp (40 years), then Argentina's Pluspetrol (16 years), the Amazonian tribal leaders want previous problems of pollution and its effects on the communities' health cleared up before more damage to the land. Partial sources online: "Indigenous people seize some facilities on Peru oil field: chieftain," Mitra Taj and Teresa Cespedes, Aug.22, 2017, Thomson Reuters; "Canadian oil firm hit by occupation as Peru faces warning of wider Indigenous uprising," Jorge Barrera, Aug.24, 2017, APTN National News.
nited Kingdom: in 2012 the UN Committee on the Rights of People with Disabilities launched its first investigation of a country for violating the rights of the disabled, in Great Britain. At its meeting in Geneva the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) heard additional evidence from groups of the disabled of violations as well as progress reports, and strongly condemned the UK's Conservative government for cutting services to the disabled, amid systemic violations of people's human rights. Those with disabilities have been disenfranchised by welfare reforms, cutbacks to social services, and a government showing lack of respect for organizations of the disabled or for the UN Committee and its previous recommendations. The UK government's written responses have been disingenuous. The current meeting has made clear that the Committee intends to hold government accountable; the UK government has agreed to engage the organizations of the disabled. The primary UN document addressing this issue is the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, signed and ratified by the United Kingdom and Canada; signed but not ratified by the United States; signed, ratified or both by 197 nations. Partial sources online: "The UN has just accused the Tories of creating a ‘human catastrophe’ in the UK," Steve Topple, Aug. 24, 2017, theCanary; "Disabled People And Their Concerns Can No Longer Be Ignored," Ellen Clifford and Anita Bellows, August 28, 2017, Govt Newspeak; "A human catastrophe for disabled people, a scandal for our country," August 27, 2017, Govt Newspeak; Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Committee on the rights of Persons with Disabilities, current, United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner; "UN: 'Grave' disability rights violations under UK reforms," Nov. 7, 2016, BBC News; "Britain has been judged by the UN to be failing on disability. Is there nothing that can't crumble under the Tories?" James Moore, Aug. 24, 2017, Independent.
August 6, 2017, Hiroshima Day
The horror, magnitude and brutality of the crime against Hiroshima and Nagasaki denied subsequent civilization a firm base for sanity. The silence of not responding to the crime evades responsibility to see that it doesn't recur. With small steps humanity tries to overcome the cruelty, the madness within, the murder of millions, the terminal damage to the planet, the terror that generations have fought against. Now finally 122 nations have voted for a "Draft treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons - dated 6 July 2017" which was adopted July 7th as the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Available for signing at the United Nations September 20th, the Treaty goes into effect when fifty nations have either accepted, acceded, approved or ratified the Treaty. The Treaty outlaws use, development, sharing, supplying and storage, of nuclear weapons. The Treaty also asserts the responsibility of any user of nuclear weapons for care of the victims. Nations relying on nuclear weapons and threat of their use against humanity are slow to support the treaty. Many wouldn't participate in the "United Nations Conference to Negotiate a Legally binding Instrument to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons, Leading Toward their Total Elimination," which brought the Treaty into being. The Conference website posts this list of voting results. Historically the list divides the governments of the world's nations into the innocent and the guilty. Some of the signers are not nuclear powers but support the nuclear weaponry agenda to further their own interests, and most of the countries furthering agendas of nuclear arms are familiar to us as "first-world", privileged, or NATO nations. "The Treaty shall be of unlimited duration" (Article 17:1). "Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons," July 7, 2017, A/CONF.229/2017/8 United Nations General Assembly.
"Kiz Çocugu" [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gOBYwLDcIAg >]
"None can hear my silent tread" [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BcFDLR-AOWQ >]
"Hiroshima, I'm sorry" [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cL9M4QmHc2Y >]
"Hiroshima" [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nwZKPgFrQCA >]
"the Song of Hiroshima" [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=roJzsexpWM8 >
"Song for Hiroshima" [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N7fr7lS7m5Y >]
"Hiroshima Nagasaki Russian roulette" [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6nnrZtUzpk >]
July 27, 2017
France: the "Written Comments of the European Roma Rights Centre Concerning France," to the United Nations Human Rights Council for its January - February 2018, periodic review of France, notes:
1. In France more than 21,537 Roma were victims of forced eviction in 2013.
2. There were 13,483 forced evictions of Roma in 2014.
3. There were 11,128 in 2015.
4. There were 10,119 in 2016.
The continuing forced evictions violate rights assured by French domestic law and U.N. Covenant rights to housing and protection against forced eviction. The evictions substantially lower Romani children's access to education. France's policy of evicting Roma, the lack of European resistance to intolerance of Roma peoples, continues a genocide warning for Roma peoples and a way of life which historically provides a survival mechanism for the poor (ie.). See previous.
July 19, 2017
U.S.A.: two threatened actions by the Trump administration may be points of no return in the enforcement of an illegal neo-fascist American agenda. The Department of Homeland Security has reportedly told the Congressional Hispanic Caucus that the DACA program will be dismantled. The "Deterred Action for Childhood Arrivals" program assures over 800,000 immigrants without official papers, work permits and a kind of asylum. The Department of Homeland Security has also warned that some undocumented workers under Temporary Protected Status risk having their TPS status cancelled. The disenfranchised are threatened with deportation to countries many have fled at the risk of their lives. Deportation to their countries of origin would be a violation of international law. According to Article 33 of the United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, "1. No Contracting State shall expel or return ("refouler") a refugee in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of territories where his life or freedom would be threatened on account of his race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion." This Article is enforced by the U.S. accession to the 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees, Nov. 1, 1968. The Trump administration's disregard for aspects of human rights is underscored by the reported closing of the U.S. State Department's Office of Global Criminal Justice. The office was tasked with applying justice to war criminals. It has attempted to further U.S. policy interests at the International Criminal Court. It has recently engaged in identifying the sources of war crimes in Syria. Partial sources online: "Trump administration to end legal protection for over one million immigrants in US," Genevieve Leigh, July 15, 2017, World Socialist Web Site; "Those with DACA or TPS should “get ready to fight mass deportation”: Gutiérrez," Ricardo Ibarra, July 17,2017, La Prensa Sonoma; "Donald Trump's administration 'closes State Department office that investigates war crimes and genocide'," Ben Kentish, July 18, 2017, Independent; "Tillerson to Shutter State Department War Crimes Office," Colum Lynch, July 17, 2017, Foreign Policy (FP).
Québec City, Québec: Québec Muslims have been denied permission to develop a cemetery in the town of Saint-Apollinaire 35 kilometres from Québec City. The attempt to buy land adjacent to an established cemetery followed the massacre of Muslims at the Québec City mosque on January 29th. Five of the six victims were returned to their birth lands for burial and one was buried in the only Muslim cemetery in Québec currently, at Laval. The denial was possible when zoning changes which allowed the new cemetery were overturned by a 19 to 16 vote of town residents. The CBC reports that La Meute (see 1 and 2) was involved in early protest against the Muslim cemetery, applied through a petition to force the referendum which overturned the zoning changes. In a meeting at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Québec City after the vote, it was revealed that two days before, Canada Post had delivered a package containing a defaced Qur'an and a hate note in French suggesting the Muslims use a pig farm for their cemetery. There are also previous reports of strangers approaching the Mosque, asking for money etc. and running away. After Québec City's initial public show of sympathy and support for its Muslim community, survivors of the January 29th attack live under a kind of terror. Current information on accused murderer Alexandre Bissonnette, is not easily available. At Bissonnette's court appearance on February 21, 2017, the judge ordered a publication ban. Charged with six counts of murder and five counts of attempted murder Bissonnette is expected in court September 8th. Québec Court Judge Jean-Louis Lemay has expressed concern with delays caused by the Crown's (ie. the prosecution's) slowness in disclosing evidence against Bissonnette. Several murder suspects have been freed in Québec due to a Supreme Court ruling last year (the Jordan decision) which requires Provincial Court legal proceedings be completed within 18 months. Partial sources online: "Quebec town votes against allowing Islamic cemetery to be built," Kenyon Wallace, July 16, 2017, Toronto Star; "Voters reject Quebec City-area Muslim cemetery project 19 to 16 ," Jonathan Hayward, July 17, 2017, The Canadian Press; "Quebec City mayor worried about far-right group linked to cemetery referendum," Jonathan Montpetit, July 18 & 19, 2017, CBC News; "Defaced Qur'an, hateful note sent to Quebec City mosque where January shootings occurred," July 19, 2017, CBC News; "Quebec mosque shooting suspect Alexandre Bissonnette changes lawyer," Andy Riga, March 30, 2017, Montreal Gazette; "Judge worried about delays in alleged mosque shooter case," Canadian Press, May 29, 2017, CTV News Montreal.
July 4, 2017
we see them as grown children
here because damaged back there
the european immigrants
our ethic is to heal every one
it is a self interest of the frontier spirit
and all we knew who have lived long
so we heal them to make our bond stronger
out of habit we coax them into survival
but they are so clever
smiling at us
to further themselves
by j.b.gerald from an unpublished book of poems, graphic by j.maas
June 30, 2017
Democratic Republic of the Congo: Independence Day 1960.
[access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0y6BjNJD0ZM >]
June 25, 2017Greece: on June 21rst thirty Roma communities with five Greek NGO's issued a call for action to protect Roma peoples in the Menidi area of Athens. The neighbourhood is being repeatedly attacked by mobs and teams with firebombs. According to a report by the European Roma Rights Centre the attackers try to drive residents for several generations, out, after a non-Roma child was struck by a bullet from an unknown source. Violence against minorities continues to increase under austerity and poverty. Social assistance to Roma is being cut back by the State. The ERRC notes Greece's recent history of anti-Roma violence in Etoliko, 2012 and 2013, as a result of group punishment for an incident. To quote the report: “Both in Etoliko in January 2013 and in Menidi in May 2017 the mob attacks were organized and led by known neo-Nazi groups, respectively Golden Dawn and Independent Maeander Nationalists/Combat 18, which subsequently took credit for the attacks. Yet, prosecuting authorities did not make any arrests nor did they proceed to prompt referrals to trial, even after complaints were filed by the Greek Helsinki Monitor. Such developments may only encourage these neo-Nazi groups said Panayote Dimitras, Greek Helsinki Monitor Spokesperson." In 2014 the Pew Research Center revealed that 53% of the Greek people have an unfavourable view of Roma; 66% of the French and 85% of the Italians view Roma unfavourably in their countries. The growing strength of fascism, the European Union's reluctance to act effectively against persecution of Roma peoples, and NATO news media which have ignored this danger to the Roma of Athens, add to consideration of a genocide warning specifically for Greek Roma, amid the genocide warning for European Roma peoples. See previous Slovakia, Europe, France, Czech Republic, etc... Partial sources online: "Athens: This is not a protest. This as a pogrom," June 21, 2017, ERRC Newsletter; "Greek Riot Police Stop Angry Crowd From Attacking Roma Community," Philip Chrysopoulos, Jun 12, 2017, GreekReporter.com; "Education and Social Integration Program for Roma in Greece Suffers 80% Budget Cut," Kerry Kolasa-Sikiaridi, Jun 16, 2017, GreekReporter.com; "Chapter 4. Views of Roma, Muslims, Jews," May 12, 2014, Pew Research Center.
June 20, 2017Serbia: a group of doctors and lawyers is suing NATO for its use of depleted uranium and for its bombing of what was once the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1999. Allegedly between ten and twenty tons of depleted uranium were expended on Yugoslavia. NATO took the action to intervene in internal conflict between Albanians and Serbians over Kosovo, but without UN Security Council approval. Portions of Serbia were destroyed by NATO bombings. Official figures found 1700 civilians killed. The Serbian legal team claims 35,000 fall sick each year due to depleted uranium exposure. On April 29, 1999, in an effort to stop the NATO bombing of his country then Prime Minister Miloševic took all the participating NATO countries to the UN's International Court of Justice and charged them with agression and genocide in the destruction of his country and people. The U.S. and Spain escaped prosecution because neither subscribed to the Court's jurisdiction. Canada which did subscribe didn't escape and to the best of my knowledge this case was put on hold by the Court's Order of June 2nd 1999, awaiting further evidence. Canada was not absolved of the crime or of complicity (See: On Crimes of Power: the Bombing of Yugoslavia, 1999). Under considerable pressure the Court eventually offered in a complex ruling that it lacked jurisdiction ("Legality of Use of Force - Serbia and Montenegro v. Canada: Summary of the Judgment of 15 December 2004," International Court of Justice). NATO shattered the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and broke it into more 'manageable' pieces, intentionally destroying the entity as a national group (Convention on Genocide, Article II). Miloševic, portrayed by NATO media as a pariah, was accused of genocide among other crimes against humanity on May 24, 1999, by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). When it became apparent he would be able to prove his innocence and win his case, Miloševic was apparently murdered in the Court's prison. In 2016, in the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia 's prosecution of Radovan Karadžic, Miloševic was absolved by the Court. Effects of depleted uranium are hidden from the North American public though discussed on these pages. (See 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9). The UN Sub-Commission on Prevention and Protection of Minorities in 1996 passed a resolution banning DU weapons. Despite the U.S. assurances it would not be using depleted uranium in Syria, the U.S. has admitted its use. In rare public exposure of the effects of DU a University of Southern Maine study associates it with the risk of cancer. A local New Hampshire paper notes that ingestion can cause kidney damage. The four governments continuously in opposition to United Nations resolutions on depleted uranium ordnance are the US, the UK, France, Israel. Partial sources online: "NATO Could be Sued for Use of Depleted Uranium in Yugoslavia," June 14, 2017, Telesur; "Serbia Preparing To Sue NATO over Use of 'Real Dirty Bombs," Boris Djuric, June 126, 2017, Newswire; "The United States Used Depleted Uranium in Syria," Samuel Oakford, Feb. 14, 2017, foreignpolicy.com; "The Cancer of War: US Used Depleted Uranium in Syria," Daniel McAdams, Feb. 18, 2017, Antiwar.com; "Cleanup continues at contaminated property in Concord," Henry Schwan, June 2, 2017, Wicked Local Concord; "UN General Assembly’s First Committee passes 6th depleted uranium resolution," ICBUW, Nov. 1, 2016, International Coalition to Ban Uranium Weapons; "The Health Risks Of Depleted Uranium In Hawaii," Carol Murry, Douglas Rokke, Lorrin Pang, Michael Reimer, Feb. 21, 2007, Honolulu Civil Beat; "Depleted Uranium: Scientific Basis for Assessing Risk," July 2003, Nuclear Policy Research Institute; "The Navy's Use of Depleted Uranium in America's Coastal Waters Threatens Humans, Wildlife," Dahr Jamail, Nov.7, 2016, Truthout.Note: according to Rokke, “DOD documents confirm that a broad spectrum of potential health effects include: lung cancer, respiratory, eye, skin, and genetic abnormalities... The VA reports DU has also caused sleep problems, neuropsychological and respiratory tract symptoms, chronic fatigue, immune system dysfunction, skin rash, hair loss, aching joints, headaches, abdominal pain, light sensitivity, blurred vision, menstrual disorders, gastrointestinal symptoms, chemical sensitivity, and birth defects in children whose parents were exposed" (Civil Beat).
Israel / Palestine: rudimentary and outrageous moral problems as well as human rights violations continue to undermine Israel's authority. In 2016 the appointment of Rabbi Col. Eyal Karim as chief rabbi of Israeli forces was challenged for his alleged approval by implication of the rape of non-Jewish women by Israeli soldiers. The given reason was improvement of morale. The 2002 source quotation for his implication permits sexual intercourse with gentile women to boost morale, in extremes. The statement is racist and sexist, but use of the word 'intercourse' doesn't provably extend to rape, and the rabbi subsequently denied any intention of condoning rape. The problem remains in the context of the questioning and the concept of "everybody knows what he means." Responding to a question which used the example of rape, the rabbi's statement did not forbid rape. According to Wikipedia he had also declared against the inclusion of women in the military except in extremes, had found women unreliable in court, referred to gays as "sick or deformed" (yet to be regarded with love), and thought Palestinians should be treated as animals. He was also against vigilantism. The appointment was confirmed. In another instance of innuendo, Knesset member Bezalel Smotrich is reported to have shared with a Zionist conference his three options for Palestinians: to leave, to remain as 2nd class citizens, to continue to resist and "the Israel Defense Forces will know what to do." This has been interpreted by some as an invitation to genocide. Also to be noted: Luis Moreno Ocampo formerly of the ICC has declared Israel guilty of a war crime for its expansion of settlements on the West Bank. Also to be noted: in January 2017 former Israeli foreign minister Tzipi Livni, cancelled a trip to Brussels and avoided possible arrest for war crimes committed under "Operation Cast Lead" (Israel's action against Gaza December 2008 to January 2009 when Livni was acting Prime Minister and foreign minister). Israel's military action killed 1700 Palestinians and 13 Israelis. Currently the Swiss Attorney General is considering charges against her be brought in Switzerland. Also to be noted: the Bedouin village of Al-Araqib in the Negev region was bulldozed for the 113th time although it has been continually rebuilt since 2010 by the people who live there. About 80,000 Bedouins live in Negev communities, many without state services - ie. water (see previous). Night's Lantern carries an ongoing genocide warning for all Palestinians, Gazans and Bedouins. Partial sources online: "New IDF Chief Rabbi Says Soldiers Can Rape Arab Women To Boost Morale," Matt Agorist, July 12, 2016, Mint Press News; "High Court freezes IDF chief rabbi nomination over rape comments," Marissa Newman, Nov. 21, 2016, The Times of Israel "Rabbi Eyal Karim sworn in as IDF chief rabbi," Jeremy Sharon, Dec. 1, 2016, Jerusalem Post; "Former ICC Official Says Israel Will Be Convicted of War Crimes," Middle East Monitor, May 31, 2017, Middle East Monitor; "War Crimes Suit Filed in Switzerland against Former Israeli Minister," Simon Bradley, May 31, 2017, SWI swissinfo.ch; "The Israeli Lawmaker Heralding Genocide Against Palestinians," Daniel Blatman, June 12, 2017, Haaretz; "Negev: Israel razes Palestinian village for 113th time," Patrick Strickland, May 18, 2017, Al Jazeera.
June 12, 2017
Yemen: there have been over 700 deaths from the cholera epidemic so far. According to Medecins sans Frontieres "Cholera can be treated simply and successfully by immediately replacing the fluids and salts lost through vomiting and diarrhea — with prompt rehydration, less than one per cent of cholera patients die." There is an upsetting coincidence of cholera epidemics in countries out of favour with their former colonial rulers or NATO policies of control. In Haiti, the 2010 cholera outbreak killed at least 7000 which rose to 9000 by 2015 with over 700,000 afflicted. In Zimbabwe the 2008 cholera outbreak reached an estimated 60,000 cases by 2009 with 600 fatalities (Oxfam), and spread to neighbouring countries. Zimbabwe's Minister of the Interior accused the British of bio-chemical warfare. Somalia is currently undergoing a cholera epidemic which has killed 600 so far this year. The Erdogan government of Turkey has just sent 24 tons of medical supplies. The region of Yemen, South Sudan, Kenya, Somalia, and Ethiopia has suffered drought since 2016 so the water is bad and over 11 million people face starvation. In Yemen the war places over half the population at risk of starvation and needing humanitarian assistance. A UN report says only 30% of required medical assistance is being delivered (withholding of medical supplies was also evident in the cholera epidemic of Haiti). Yemen's population is being gradually destroyed by extreme poverty, war, famine, and cholera. A genocide warning for the people of Yemen, continues. Partial sources online: "Turkey sends aid to cholera victims in Somalia," Duygu Yener, June 6, 2017, Anadolu Agency; "Cholera plagues famine-stricken East Africa: Aid group," Magdalene Mukami, June 6, 2016, Anadolu Agency; "Cholera cases in Yemen pass 100,000: WHO," Thomson Reuters, June 08, 2017, CBC News; "How the UN Covered Up a Cholera Epidemic in Zimbabwe," Armin Rosen, April 3, 2013, The Atlantic; "2010 Haiti cholera outbreak," current, Wikipedia.
Turkey: on June 6th the Erdogan government arrested the head of Turkish Amnesty International, Taner Kiliç and 22 other lawyers. Amnesty International reports him falsely accused of membership in the “Fethullah Gülen Terror Organization.” The regime blames an attempted coup in 2016 on Fethullah Gülen, a Sunni cleric self exiled since 1999 in Pennsylvania. In Turkey over 40,000 people have been arrested following the failed coup. Partial sources online: "Turkey: Imprisonment of Amnesty Chair is a devastating injustice," June 9, 2017, Amnesty International; "Who is Fethullah Gulen, the man Erdogan blames for coup attempt in Turkey?" July 21, 2017, CBC News; "Turkey charges Amnesty chief Taner Kiliç with coup links," June 10, 2017, BBC News.
June 4, 2017
U.S.: "Information is a key asset for policy makers’ ability to determine actual or potential genocide and mass atrocity (GMA) situations." Document (click for automatic download .pdf file): "Early Warning Signs and Indicators to Genocide and Mass Atrocity," Maj. Stephen M. Wisniew, 2012, School of Advanced Military Studies (United States Army Command and General Staff College Fort Leavenworth, Kansas). [access:< http://www.dtic.mil/get-tr-doc/pdf?AD=ADA570182 ">.
May 28, 2017 Argentina Nunavut SlovakiaSlovakia: The European Roma Rights Centre has released a video showing police entering a Roma community in Zborove Slovakia and randomly attacking people: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QpNVe33xosI. So far this year Romani peoples from Slovakia, Hungary, and the Czech Republic, countries which currently are visa exempt for entry to Canada, report being stopped from boarding flights to Canada when flying from Germany, Belgium, England, Poland. According to Canadian regulations (EN 15) Airlines carrying "improperly documented" foreigners to Canada can be fined $3200/person plus administration fees. Due to a history of severe repression of Roma in Slovakia an early genocide warning for Roma in Europe is specifically noted for this country (ie. previous). Partial sources online: "Slovakia: Police Attack Roma Community: children and Elderly Injured," ERRC, My 24, 2017, ICARE; "Obligations of transporters (ENF 15)," current, Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada; "Roma say they’re being barred from flights to Canada," Nicholas Keung, May 6, 2017, thestar.com.
Argentina: a recent Supreme Court decision extended a legal technicality which may allow the early release of hundreds of former army and intelligence personnel punished for atrocities while participating in Operation Condor. On May 10th 200,000 people went to the streets in protest. Operation Condor murdered civilians innocent of any crime and is thought to have killed 30,000 Argentine dissenters, leftists, labour leaders - opponents of the regime, and 50,000 throughout the Americas. Supported by the CIA the military program was primarily managed by Chile and Argentina but Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay, and Bolivia as well. In the 1970s and 80s Argentina intervened on the side of right wing oppression in Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala - see "Operation Charly" Wikipedia. Argentina's incipient fascism was evident when Juan Perón strongly encouraged German and Vichy French Nazi immigration after WWII. Nazi escape lines to Argentina for war criminals were run by the Catholic church. Increasing evidence of Church complicity with the dictatorship during Argentina's 'dirty war' isn't surprising. Priests who worked for the poor could not be disappeared by the military without approval of their Bishops, and the current Pope Francis of Argentina remains accused of turning over two Jesuit priests to torture and death (both were saved). In previously classified U.S. materials released to Argentina Operation Condor appears more ambitious than initially understood. Reports released under the Obama administration revealed Operation Condor's targeting of human rights proponents in Europe as well as the Americas, including leaders of Amnesty International. The CIA seems to have been in the loop and one awaits reports which offer names and dates of specific connections. Other reports confirm the Nixon administration and Henry's Kissinger's direct involvement in the Chilean coup. A report released Dec. 12, 2016 reveals Pinochet's secret police (DINA) received instruction from ex Gestapo at La Dignidad, a Nazi colony in southern Chile. Background: 1, 2, 3, 4. Partial sources online: "Operation Condor: Officials of Amnesty International Targeted for 'Liquidation'," ed. Carlos Osorio and Peter Kornbluh, Dec. 14, 2016, National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 572; "Argentines protest Supreme Court ruling on Dirty War sentences," May 11, 2017, Reuters; "Trump Continues U.S. Declassified Diplomacy with Argentina," ed. Carlos Osorio, April 27, 2017, National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 588; "Argentina Releases Dictatorship Doctor Who Helped Steal Babies," May 7, 2017, Telesur; "Nazis Trained and Supported Chile’s Operation Condor Activities," Ian Greenhalgh, Dec. 18, 2016, Veterans Today; "In Argentina, Leniency for a 'Dirty War' Criminal Spurs Outrage," Rut Diamint and Laura Tedesco, May 26, 2017, usnews.com.
Nunavut: In what becomes a yearly ritual, a new report notes the crisis in "food insecurity" of Nunavut, requiring "remedial action". "Food insecurity" can mean anything from lacking adequate nourishment to starvation, but without having to be specific. The phrase is favoured by government and academic reports. This gradual starvation of Aboriginal peoples is noted repeatedly. The CBC reported in April 2016 that "food insecurity" in Nunavut had reached record levels, and that 60% of the children were living in "food insecure" circumstances. Before that, in October 2013 James Anaya, the UN Special Rapporteur on Indigenous rights summed up all the problems of Canada's Aboriginal people to find them living "in crisis". In May of 2012 the UN's Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, Olivier De Schutter, visited Canada as the first NATO country ever to require a visit, to find the Aboriginal peoples rights and access to food, insecure. A genocide warning continues. While the Convention on Genocide has legal standing in Canada the current government is not likely to allow its application. Partial sources online: "Nunavut, Northwest Territories food insecurity reaches record level: study," John Van Dusen, April 07, 2016, CBC News; "Food insecurity in Nunavut 'should be considered a national crisis,' expert says," May 20, 2017, CBC News; "A quarter of Nunavut's population faces moderate to severe food insecurity, report says," Sara Frizzell, May 18, 2017, CBC News; "Report finds Nunavut has the highest food insecurity rate for any indigenous population in a developed country," Anna Maria Tremonti, March 28, 2014, "The Current" / CBC radio.
May 23, 2017
South Carolina, a footnote to the previous posting: South Carolina is accepting more and more nuclear waste from foreign countries. These include: Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Italy, Sweden, Canada and Japan. Current U.S. policy is to gather weapons grade plutonium 'to keep it out of the hands of terrorists.' Partial sources online: "FACT SHEET: Italy Highly Enriched Uranium and Plutonium Removals," Office of the Press Secretary, March 24, 2014, The White House; "FACT SHEET: Belgium Highly Enriched Uranium and Plutonium Removals," Office of the Press Secretary, March 24, 2014, The White House; "Savannah River Site Becoming World's Nuclear Dumping Ground, Despite Safety Risks," Matthew Charles Cardinale, June 9, 2014, Atlanta Progressive News; "DOE's South Carolina Plutonium Dilemma: Plutonium Keeps Secretly Coming in but No Viable Plan to Take It Out," Savannah River Site Watch, Dec. 21, 2015, SRSWatch; "Nuclear Dumps by the Riverside: Threats to the Savannah River from Radioactive Contamination at the Savannah River Site," Arjun Makhijani, Ph.D. and Michele Boyd, March 2004 / March 2015, Institute for Energy and Environmental Research.
May 21, 2017
"On the nuclear wasting of South Carolina"
Ontario / South Carolina: (previous); the Canadian shipments of nuclear waste to the U.S. Department of Energy's Savannah River Site are currently underway. Without effect, the Anishinabek Nation and Iroquois Caucus have asked the Canadian Government to forego transporting the hazardous materials, and to downgrade the nuclear waste at home in Chalk River. This was also suggested by Savannah River Site Watch in South Carolina to spare from the chance of irradiation of people, land, rivers and water between the two sites. With Department of Energy permission (sic) Indonesia is able to downgrade its nuclear waste at home. An environmental coalition of Savannah River Site Watch, the Sierra Club, Beyond Nuclear, Nuclear Information and Resource Service, Lone Tree Council, Citizens for Alternatives to Chemical Contamination, Environmentalists Inc., has tried unsuccessfully to stop the transport through court action. American courts remain unable to protect the people from the risks of nuclear energy. Joining the American groups in requests to government were the Canadian groups of Sierra Club Canada Foundation, National Council of Women of Canada, Concerned Citizens of Renfrew County, Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility, Durham Nuclear Awareness, whose combined efforts proved equally ineffective. The transport of the 23,000 litres scheduled is considered hazardous due to the distance, through populated areas, and possibly faulty lead "pigs" (containers). In the first batch delivered to the Savannah River Plant this April a "hot spot" was found in the side of a container. Supposedly the site has facilities to re-process highly enriched uranium. Yet it is also said that the State has no way to dispose of the plutonium waste already on hand at the site, modestly estimated at 13 tons in 2016 (Unofficial estimates of plutonium at SRS run as high as 30 tons). In March 2016 there was public resistance to the shipment of 331Kg of weapons grade plutonium waste from Japan to the Savannah River Site. In 2014 Nights Lantern noted the report of agreement between the German nuclear industry and U.S. Department of Energy to store German nuclear waste. See also "Nuclear Notes: the Savannah River Watershed".Historical note: as South Carolina becomes an irrecoverable holding area and dumping ground for nuclear waste, scarred since the 1950's by radiation from uranium processing, overburdening the Savannah River Site is likely to further endanger the habitat of Georgia and South Carolina. Families of all races are victim. Both white and Black Racism and the hatreds of historically separated groups work against the South cohering in a unified resistance. Actions such as the Georgia Prison Strike or the Free Alabama Movement suggest there is unity when the oppression becomes terminal. The region's people need to be informed. Background.Partial sources online: "South Carolina governor urges U.S. to divert plutonium from Japan," Aaron Sheldrick & Megan Cassella, Mar 24, 2016, Reuters; "Highly Radioactive Liquid Shipments Have Begun - But Can Still be Stopped," Gordon Edwards, May 14 2017, Eaglewatch; "2016/03/18 NGO Joint Statement Against Secret Plutonium Shipment in Tokai-mura," March 18, 2016, Greenpeace; "First shipment of radioactive liquid waste from Canada received at Savannah River, hotspot detected," Virginia Daffron, May 15, 2017, Mountain Xpress; "Liquid Nuclear Waste Convoys A Threat to the Waters of the Great Lakes," Press release, Oct. 3, 2016, Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility.
May 18, 2017
The Ukraine: "The threats to the Jewish population from those close to power who are either consciously or through the training of their childhoods immersed in a Nazi ideology, seem primitive, personal, unchecked, and are increasingly in need of the State's damage control. Aware of anti-Semitism as an impediment to Euro-American support the Ukraine has an overtly Jewish Prime Minister who has met with his Israeli counterpart to improve the Ukraine's defense and security establishments. The cosmetics are challenged by torchlight parades and utterances that might be considered surreal in another country. The Jewish Chronicle reports that Vasily Vovk, a retired general in the country's security services has announced on Facebook (a post since deleted) that Jews aren't Ukrainians and he intends to destroy them." - from "The Tactical Use of the Ukraine," by J.B.Gerald.
April 30, 2017 Europe Chile U.S.A.
Europe: the ethnic cleansing of the Roma people is in progress, marked by policies which signal an intention to assure the eventual death of a people. The persecution of Roma people continues throughout Europe, so deeply entrenched in European attitudes that the EU Human Rights Commission has not effectively countered. Recent destruction of Roma encampments as reported by media continues in both Italy and France. In Italy the press was barred from witnessing the expulsion of Roma from their encampent outside Naples on April 7th. Throughout France water, sewage and electric fees for traveling units are increasing past affordability. An elected member of the National Front suggests that Roma people have their gold teeth pulled to pay food and lodging expenses. The Communist Party mayor of the town calls him to account. The National Front party finds his "humour" in "bad taste." On April 6th, an Italian deputy to the European Union, Mara Bizzotto, announces to the European Parliament that "Roma children in Italy didn't want to go to school because their families made them stay at home to beg and steal." The European Roma Rights Centre has just issued a report, Thirsting for Justice, on the ways in which Roma access to water is being limited in Slovakia, France, Hungary, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, and Moldavia among other European countries. The report avoids confronting many of the more powerful European nations, while revealing a concerted effort to deprive Roma of life sustenance, physical and mental health. An example of Roma community conditions in Beregovo Ukraine (a quotation from the report referencing ERRC research): "Beregovo, Ukraine – A large Roma settlement on the outskirts of the town. Some five to six thousand people share two or three taps located along the main unpaved road. These taps are often closed down or out of order. The municipality entrusted the taps’ use and water fee collection to a local ‘baron’ (unofficial community leader). There is no official policy on collecting water fees and barons collect lump sums per capita regardless of the consumption. Barons are often appointed by the local authorities (not elected by communities) to administer public services in segregated Romani settlements, these appointments together with money-lending practices secures them a dominant position in the community. There is no sewage system in the settlement, only self-made pit-latrines and a self-made canal for waste water and other waste located some 10-20 metres from the houses." As previously mentioned, in France last year 6 of every 10 Roma families were forcibly evicted putting 10,000 in the street. Most of the evictions occurred in the winter months. The rise of anti-Semitism is gradually being equated with national hate crimes against Roma peoples referred to in the English language press as "Antigypsyism." Night's Lantern's early genocide warnings for Roma in the Czech Republic, France, Hungary, Italy, Kosovo, are extended to all countries throughout the European Union. The Treatment of the Roma people in France and elsewhere in Europe may foreshadow how Europe will eventually attempt to treat all its poor. Partial sources online: "Thirsting for Justice: Europe's Roma Denied Access to Clean Water and Sanitation," March 2017, European Roma Rights Centre (Budapest) [access:< http://www.errc.org/cms/upload/file/thirsting-for-justice-march-2017.pdf >]; "Thousands of Roma 'made homeless' in France in 2016," Anealla Safdar, Feb. 7, 2017, Al Jazeera News; "Roms en Italie : une expulsion cruelle," April 7, 2017, Amnesty International France; "Isère : un élu FN propose de "récupérer 'les dents en or' des Roms," March 17, 2017, franceinfo; "La députée italienne Mara Bizzotto s'attaque aux Roms au Parlement européen," April 11, 2017, francinfo; "Villenave-d'Ornon : un camp de Roms évacué par les CRS," Yves Maugue, April 25, 2017 France Bley Gironde; "Thousands of Roma Forced onto Streets of France in 2016," Press release, Feb. 7, 2017, ERRC; "Recensement des évacuations forcées de lieux de vie occupés par des Roms (ou des personnes désignées comme telles) en France: Année 2016," Feb. 6, 2017, Ligue des droits de l'Homme [access:< http://www.ldh-france.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Note-Expulsions-forcees-2016.pdf >].
Chile: on April 26th 16 former military officers were charged with complicity in the murders of Pinochet opponents just after the U.S. backed military coup in September 1973. This repeats similar charges a year ago in the same case. The murdered were placed in detention Oct. 16, 1973, then executed. Both Agence France Press and Venezuela's Telesur omit the names of the officers charged except for the name of Juan Emilio Cheyre, the commander-in-chief of Chile's armed forces from 2002 to 2006 under the presidency of Ricardo Lagos. When Cheyre was accused in this incident a year ago he was released from jail on bond. Telesur's article reports the officers have been convicted. T13 maintains Cheyre is about to present his defense. The names of other officers charged are: Pedro Espinoza Bravo, Sergio Arredondo González, Juan Chiminelli Fullerton, Ariosto Lapostol Orrego, Víctor Alegre Rodríguez, Emilio de la Mahotiere González, Luis Felipe Polanco Gallardo, Jaime Ojeda Torrent, Hernán Valdebenito Bugmann, Guillermo Raby Arancibia, Hugo Leiva González, Mario Vargas Miguieles, Mario Larenas Carmona, Luis Humberto Fernández Monjes, Luis Araos Flores. Lack of clarity and sequence in available reports limits my understanding of the proceedings but also suggest attempts by power to suppress this news story and the course of Chilean justice; it is likely that as Chile's commanding general from 2002 to 2006, Cheyre's connection to and protection by U.S. interests were strong. "Estamos ad portas de que se dicte la sentencia de primera instancia y finalmente las víctimas de La Serena, a pesar de todo el poder del Ejército, de parte de la autoridad civil que han apoyado con fiereza a Juan Emilio Cheyre, deben aceptar esta resolución de los tribunales en el marco de un justo y debido proceso..." (El Mostrador). Previous. Background: Memoria Viva [access:< http://www.memoriaviva.com/ >]. Partial sources online: "Chile charges 16 military officials in Caravan of Death," AFP, April 26, 2017, Yahoo! News; "Chile Charges 16 Military Officers Who Waged Terror in Pincohet's 'Caravan of Death'," April 27, 2017, Telesur; "Juez Carroza acusa como cómplice al ex Comandante en Jefe del Ejército Juan Emilio Cheyre en el caso Caravana de la Muerte," El Mostrador, April 26, 2017, elmostrador.
U.S.A.: Judith Clark was denied parole by the New York State Parole Board, despite Governor Andrew Cuomo's commutation of her sentence from life in prison without eligibility for parole until 2056, to 35 years-to-life with a parole hearing in 2017. Clark committed no crime of violence but drove a getaway car in the 1981 Brinks robbery. Two police and a Brinks guard were killed. At 67, her next parole hearing will be in 2019. Police groups use the severity of her sentence as a cudgel against the American left, a political control characteristic in sentences of left wing political prisoners (see "Political Prisoners Updates"), a tactic currently extended to the Muslims targeted as extremists (see Aafia Siddiqi). Extreme sentences for crimes which don't reflect premeditated murder, atrocities, or war crimes, lessen the power of deterence in long sentences. These should be noted as indications of a society moving into fascism. Partial sources online: "Judith Clark, Getaway Driver in Deadly Brinks Heist, Is Denied Parole," Marc Santora, April 21, 2017, The New York Times; "Parole Board does right by keeping Judith Clark in prison," Post Editorial Board, April 24, 2017, New York Post; "Judith Clark: 10,000 petitions to keep her in prison," Joseph Spector, March 29, 2017, Iohud The Journal News.
April 17, 2017 Easter Monday
Ireland: Irish First Mothers has asked Ireland's Attorney General to initiate a case against those responsible for genocide against unwed mothers of the poor, forced into detention, whose children were stripped from them and placed for adoption. Circa 1945 to 1975, 2200 Irish babies were placed for adoption in the U.S. without respecting laws protecting the human rights of the mothers. A letter of request for action was also sent to the International Criminal Court not requesting charges but requesting help for Ireland's Attorney General with advice and procedural facilitation. The Attorney General's response was that her offices couldn't initiate charges. On April 4th Irish First Mothers wrote the Attorney General demanding action: We now charge that a religiously founded and motivated, State-funded, mass system of de facto incarceration caused us grievous life-long injury; then forcibly removed our children by means of systemically uninformed, impaired consents to adoption. Our children were with intent transferred from us as unmarried mothers to couples married in civil law under religious ceremonies. The Convention on Genocide includes as genocide under Article II - e., Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group. The Irish First Mothers' argument relies on the customs and enforcement of the Catholic Church in placing unwed mothers in detention and taking away their children. On March 3rd the Mothers and Baby Homes Commission of Investigation reported evidence of the remains of children at Tuam Mother and Baby Home run by the Bon Secours order. Partial sources online: "Homes survivors’ group ceases co-operation with commission," Conor Lally, March 13, 2017, The Irish Times; "Call for genocide prosecution over mothers’ homes," Justine McCarthy, April 9, 2017, The Sunday Times; "Formal Genocide Charges v. Irish State, Religious Institutions and Persons," Kathy McMahon Founder, Irish First Mothers, April 4, 2017, IrishFirstMothers.com; "Heart-wrenching documentary shines light on adoption trade of Irish ‘illegitimate children’," Christina Finn, Sept. 18, 2014, thejournal.ie; "What's The Difference Between Long Kesh and a Mother And Baby Home?" Finfan Dunne, March 20, 2017, Irish First Mothers.
April 11, 2017 Democratic Republic of the Congo Syria
Democratic Republic of the Congo update: the Globe and Mail reports that Canadian mining companies Ivanhoe Mines Ltd., Banro Corp. and Alphamin Resources Corp., are among those increasing their operations. Specifically in the Eastern Congo (see previous) Banro which is based in Toronto took 200,000 ounces of gold from its Twangiza mine and Namoya mine during 2016. 70% of all Congolese live under the poverty line. Despite "incidents" targeting Banro's personnel it plans two additional mines to double production. Dan Gertler, the Israeli billionaire is heavily invested in Congo, and has been a principle supporter of the Kabila governments as well as an alleged purveyor of enormous bribes. While the Catholic Church has taken credit for the current peace in the Congo, the country waits for President Joseph Kabila who has outstayed his mandate in power, to step down at the end of 2017; there's increasing violence against church personnel throughout the country. Rwandan President Paul Kagame, alleged responsible for the genocide of Hutu in the DRC, has addressed AIPAC in New York City, asserting common ground between Rwanda and Israel in their populations of Holocaust survivors. The Dan Gertler owned mining company, Oil of DRCongo (of his Fleurette Group), reports discovering an oil reserve of 3 billion barrels under Lake Albert near the border of Uganda. Drilling plans require the "relocations" of villages. Partial sources online: "Canadian mining companies turn bullish on Congo, despite its violence," Geoffrey York, May 19, 2017, The Globe and Mail. "Diamonds forever: Will Israel stay away from Congo?" Daniel Brett, Jan. 11, 2017, Al Arabiya English; "Israeli-Owned Mining Company Discovers Vast Oil Reserves in DRC," AFP. March 25, 2017, Arutz Sheva; "Deteriorating security situation in DR Congo 'a source of major concern,' warns UN envoy," March 21, 2017, United Nations News Centre; "Genocide des Hutu au Congo: Temoignage d'un Rescape," Gaspard Musabyimana, Nov. 2, 2010, musabyimana.net.
Syria: (previous). Three articles by Prof. Michel Chossudovsky question the official accounts currently preparing the Euro-North American public for war:
* "Pentagon Trained Syria’s Al Qaeda 'Rebels' in the Use of Chemical Weapons"
* "When America’s 'Progressives' Pay Lip Service to Imperialism. The Anti-War Movement is Dead"
* "Washington’s False Flag: United Nations Confirmed that US Supported Syrian “Rebels” Were Using Chemical Weapons"
April 7, 2017
Syria: Without legal mandate and under orders of the U.S. President, the U.S. Navy has launched 59 cruise missiles at Syria's Shayrat air base in an act of war. The missiles were fired from the USS Ross and the USS Porter. Background: in response to US/NATO media accounts of civilian deaths in northern Syria (the town of Khan Sheikdom) attributed to chemical weapons (the reports were not verified by international agencies) and blaming the Syrian government, attempts to provoke global outrage at Syria's President Assad have taken precedence over calls for investigations of this war crime. A spurious use of chemical weapons is apart from any tactical interests of the Syrian Army. Images of injuries to children were widely disseminated by Western news services. Russian sources have claimed that a poison gas factory and storage depot of anti Assad forces was damaged. In 2013 President Assad turned over Syria's chemical weapon production facilities and stockpiles to the international community for destruction, and in 2014 these were entirely destroyed according to The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. Our previous posting on Syria notes U.S. forces on the ground in Syria, without Syrian Government consent, a crime of aggression under international law. Previous allegations against the Syrian government for use of chemical weapons against its own people were never verified. Recent evidence of a propaganda campaign to vilify President Assad includes allegations of war crimes in the mistreatment of prisoners, a facet of his regime recognized as early as 2002 in the torture of Canadian Maher Arar. A genocide warning for the people of Syria is maintained (I believe a genocide of Syrian people as a national group is in progress). For perspectives suppressed by establishment media:
"Ray McGovern: The Inside Scoop on the Middle East & Israel" (Regis Tremblay, 2016) [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wnITcUQiK1Y >]
"Ex-UK Ambassador: Assad wasn't behind the chemical attack" (Syriana Analysis)[access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pS6Oa_aDS6E >]
"Syrian Rebels Behind Sarin Gas Attack" (Israeli Live News) [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pS6Oa_aDS6E >]
"Repaired Audio MP3: US Syrian Invasion Planned Months in Advance" (Israeli Live News) [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QdQqAFD_rJ4 >]
Partial sources online: "Swedish Medical Associations Says White Helmets Murdered Kids for Fake Gas Attack Videos," Gordon Duff, April 6, 2017, Veterans Today; "Tillerson: Steps Already Underway for US Removal of Assad," Jason Ditz, April 06, 2017, antiwar.com; "U.S. launches missiles on Syria in response to deadly gas attack," Julie Pace, Vivian Salama, Lolita C.Baldo, April 6 & 7, 2017, The Globe and Mail "Syria’s Chemical Arsenal Fully Destroyed, U.S. Says," Alan Rappeport, Aug. 18, 2014, The New York Times; "MIT Study Further Destroys Washington’s Syria Chemical Weapons Claim," 21WIRE, Jan. 201, 2014, 21rst Century Wire; "Removal of Chemical Weapons From Syria Is Completed," Naftali Bendavid, June 23, 2014, Wall Street Journal; "Does ISIS Have Access to Chemical Weapons in Iraq and Syria?" Alastair Jamieson, Oct. 28, 2014, NBCNews; "The Truth Behind the Khan Sheikhoun Chemical Attack," trans. Samer Hussein, April 5, 2017, Fort Russ.
April 2, 2017 Canada France Russia Guatemala
Canada: concerning the planned transfer of HEU (highly enriched uranium) stored at Chalk River nuclear plant, to South Carolina where it can be processed, RCI reports the shipment of liquid radioactive waste requires 150 truckloads. Iroquois Confederacy communities are against the transportation which they find needless when modern technology for processing HEU now exists; the transportation in liquid form may be life threatening to forty million people. There is also doubt that the containers are adequate for safety. Partial sources online: "Stalled nuclear shipments back on the road," Nicholas Camilleri, Feb 9, 2017, Today's Trucking; "Highly Enriched Uranium transport objected to by First Nations," Carmel Kilkenny, March 2, 2017, Radio Canada International; "Nuclear shipment not safe," March 14, 2017, Niagara this Week- St. Catherines
France: news about France's program to ethnically cleanse the country of French Roma no longer reaches international pages. A report by the European Roma Rights Centre and the Ligue des droits de L’Homme notes 6 out of 10 French Roma families have been evicted, and last year ten thousand Roma were put on the street, the majority in mid-winter. While the European Union has condemned France, no resistance has fought for Roma rights, despite the history of France's WWII turning over the Roma people to the Nazis. Night's Lantern has noted genocide warnings for France's Roma since 2010. The contemporary persecution of French Roma has forewarned of the resurgence of anti-Semitism - not at the hands of Muslim communities but caused by politicians seeking popular support, and by the corporate state, and by government inaction. Many French Jews are currently fearful of far right populist presidential candidate Marine Le Pen who leads in the polls. LePen is wooing the Jewish community by appealing to a fear of Islam, supporting the JDL in France, and a strongly Zionist political teammate, former police inspector Michel Thooris. However she has also indicated her government would ask dual citizens of France and Israel to choose. And she has supported banning the wearing of yarmulkes in public. In 2015, 8000 Jews left France to live in Israel. After a terrorist attack five years ago which killed a rabbi, his two children and another child, 300 Jewish families left Toulouse. Of recent French anti-Semitic crimes, an ancient Jewish cemetery in Waldwisse (bordering Germany) was vandalized with damage to 80% of its gravestones. The cemetery was previously desecrated in 2014. Partial sources online: "Thousands of Roma Forced onto Streets of France in 2016," Feb. 7, 2017, ERCC; "Vandals desecrate 80% Jewish graves at small French cemetery," April 1, 2017, RT; "Jews are safer in Israel’s bunkers than in French ghettos," March 25, 2017, Arutz Sheva 7; "What if the US had a French President?" Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, March 29, 2017, JewishPress.com; "Report: Le Pen Boosting Appeal to French Jews," David Israel, March 22, 2017, JewishPress.com; "Le Pen: French Jews Will Have to Give Up Israeli Citizenship," Roni Bar, Feb. 10, 2017, Haaretz.
Russia: still honoured by Russia where poets are a voice of a people, Yevgeny Yevtushenko has died in Oklahoma. The poet, best known for his poem "Babi Yar," was teaching at the University of Tulsa. While hiring Russia's cultural icons to educate young Americans, the West's campaign against all things Russian continues. For example, Professor of law Eric Heinze (Queen Mary University of London) writes of Russia as "history’s top purveyor of global antisemitism," blaming as well the Venezuelan government of Hugo Chávez and Nicolás Maduro, and leftists in general. Partial sources online: "Acclaimed Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko dies in Oklahoma," Ken Miller, (AP), April 1, 22017, News1130. "Russia is the global leader in Jew-hate," Eric Heinze, Feb. 24,2017, The Jewish Chronicle."Yevgeny Yevtushenko Recites Babi Yar" <[access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJEGrgdGzPE >].
Guatemala: the Associated Press reports that a second trial on charges of genocide against former dictator José Efraín Ríos Montt is being initiated. The first trial remains out of the news - its finding of Ríos Montt guilty on charges of genocide of Ixil Indians was overturned by a curious high court procedure and then re-initiated - that case may be in legal limbo as one legal technicality after another impedes its progression (previous). The new trial under charges of genocide involves the murder of 201 civilians at Las Dos Erres, Petén, a village in northern Guatemala. Ríos Montt, shielded by his senility and legal impunity of the privileged, isn't likely to appear at either trial: a defense lawyer contends that the new trial can only verify the facts of the genocide but can't impose a sentence. Background. Partial sources online: "Guatemala ex-dictator Rios Montt to stand 2nd genocide trial," Associated Press, March 31, 2017, Fox News; "Defensa: Ríos Montt no puede ser condenado," José del Águila, April 1, 2017, La Hora.
March 16, 2017
Africa: "The Politics Of Genocide," Keith Harmon Snow (2013) offers a realistic perspective on contemporary colonialist interests and tactics in Africa. The video concludes by noting a specific unprosecuted act of genocide by Rwandan President Paul Kagame's forces in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1996, against Hutu refugees. The crime has no statute of limitations. Snow has consistently provided honest, deep, well informed reporting on Central Africa. The Genocide of Hutu refugees in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1996 is well documented in United Nations genocide mapping by the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights. I believe Snow's statement is corroborated by 5DRCSectionIChapterTwoPart1 which is found in Peter Erlinder's Rwanda Documents Project at http://www.rwandadocumentsproject.net. The work is a heart breaking effort to document in order to counter, the horror humankind can create. Year after year the killing of refugees and innocent civilians of one ethnic group then another blends into a sea of blood, senseless, until it appears the sole purpose of the Congo wars was/is depopulation. The responsibility for the terrible acts of continual massacre shifts from one or another group of troops to the tactics and purposes of the ongoing warfare. We are left with the awareness that the Democratic Republic of the Congo was invaded in a war of aggression by Ugandan and Rwandan troops, and their leadership bears the responsibility for part of the genocide occurring in the Congo. The subsequent genocide warnings by Night's lantern for Rwanda and Democratic Republic of the Congo, are inadequate. See also my "Tactical Use of Genocide in Sudan and the Five Lakes Region" (2006). See also the case of U.S. attorney Peter Erlinder, who barely survived an arrest by Kagame while Erlinder was defending a presidential candidate who opposed Kagame and tried to share information about the genocide of the Hutu as well as Tutsi, Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza (she remains in prison): 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14. Apparently protected from prosecution under the genocide convention, on March 10th, 2017, Rwanda's President Paul Kagame, gave his fourth lecture since 2011 to the Harvard Business School class of Prof. Michael Porter and Prof. Laura Alfaro, “Microeconomics of Competitiveness.” Partial sources online: "Video: Kagame speaks at Harvard Business School class," Collins Mwai, March 12, 2017, Rwanda New Times; "President Kagame at Harvard Business School Class | Boston, 10 March 2017," Paul Kagame [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oGv5-v87UhA >]; "The Politics Of Genocide - Must See! (KHS)," Keith Harmon Snow, 2013 Youtube [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GF0Z_OEkuuE >].
March 13, 2017 Israel/Palestine Syria USA
Israel/Palestine updates: according to the CJPME (Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East) a new poll which it co-sponsored with Independent Jewish voices, Dimitri Lascaris and Murray Dobbin, indicates an overwhelming majority of Canadians believes that criticism of Israel's policies isn't necessarily anti-Semitic. The poll also finds most Canadians have a negative view of Israel's government while they believe the Canadian government is biased in Israel's favour. The Middle East Monitor carries word from Palestine's Ministry of Health that anaesthetic gas is currently banned from Gaza. This halts surgeons' ability to operate. The Guardian reports a new law which bars entry to those who have called for or pledged to uphold the boycott of Israel. News of Israel's peace movement and anti establishment resistance generally doesn't appear in the Euro-American media. Partial sources online: "New Survey: On Israel, Canadian Gov’t out of touch / Nouveau sondage: Sur Israël, le gouvernement canadien est hors de contact," CJPME, Feb.16, 2017, CJPME email; "2017 Survey: On Israel-Palestine, Canadian Gov’t is out of Touch," CJPME / EKOS, current (Feb.10, 2017), www.cjpme,org/survey; "Israel bans delivery of anaesthesia gas to Gaza hospitals," Feb. 8, 2017, Middle East Monitor; "Israel passes law barring entry for supporters of boycott of Jewish state," Jerusalem AFP, March 6, 2017, theguardian.
Syria: the United States has confirmed its use of depleted uranium weapons in Syria. According to World Bulletin the long lasting slow acting lethal weapon was used in air raids by four A-10 warthogs in November 2015, against oil convoys . The locations "near al-Hassakah, and Deir Ez-Zour" may affect Syrians locally as well as the increasing number of U.S. ground forces. Due to the damages to the civilian population and environment, use of DU is a war crime. U.S. presence on the ground, uninvited by the Syrian government would be the more immediate crime of aggression and risks prolonging a war that is destroying the people of Syria: genocide warning. Due to lack of credibility in mass media reporting on Syria, government reporting of its own war crimes may provide the most accurate documentation available. Some background on the effects of depleted uranium in Afghanistan: "The Silent Genocide from America" (2001) & "The Perpetual Death from America" (2002); "Depleted uranium," painting by Julie Maas (2001). Partial sources online: "US confirms use of depleted uranium in Syria," World Bulletin; Feb. 15, 2017, World Bulletin; "Weapon of Genocide: US Confirms It Used Depleted Uranium in Syria," Richard Brandt, Feb. 16, 2017, wgrovenet; "US Troop Increase Risks Tangling in Syria's War," Zeina Karam /AP, March 10, 2017, Military.com.
U.S.A.: PEN American Center asks to be alerted to any artist at risk or denied entry to the U.S. under the new Executive Order concerning immigration. See "Alert us" at PEN American Center.
March 8, 2017
by julie maas
February 22, 2017 Montreal Yemen South Sudan
Montreal. Under the guidance of Mayor Denis Coderre the City Council has voted unanimously to designate Montreal a "Sanctuary City," joining Vancouver, London, Hamilton, and Toronto (Ottawa is currently considering). The "sanctuary" status should give undocumented people access to city services and to provincial health care, but without fear of being deported. Intended to protect the undocumented from undue hassles by police and Canada's Border Services Agency, this may also have to rely on the efforts of Montrealers and the people of Quebec. Montreal's Solidarity Across Borders, has indicated that Montreal's designation as a "Sanctuary City" needs more than symbolic application. Quebec as a province is traditionally more selective with its immigration policies than Canada. Recently groups such as the Quebec wide La Meute, with 43 thousand members in a Facebook group online, is considered anti-immigrant (it fears a mass influx of Muslims) and is expanding into Ontario; a former NDP Minister of Parliament who became Bloc Québécois, has posted a picture of himself with La Meute's logos of wolf's paw, on his Facebook page - the CBC reports that Claude Patry has become leader of Clan (read "chapter") 02 of La Meute. Charles Taylor a Québécois philospher and former McGill professor who strongly influenced a Parti Québécoise secularism charter in 2013 attempt to ban the wearing of religious symbols by state employees, has had to reconsider. After the murder of six in a Quebec City mosque, he now advises against any state actions which might "stigmatize minorities." Night's Lantern has advised against burqa bans and similar attempts by a state to control religious and cultural symbology since 2010. In the U.S. about 400 cities have declared as sanctuary cities, including New York City, but application of the declaration remains unclear enough to encourage immigrants to risk their lives in efforts to enter Canada illegally. Democracy Now! carries McClatchy's report that hundreds of thousands may be subject to a vastly expanded application of "expedited removal proceedings," spelled out in Homeland Security papers near signing by the White House. The McClatchy report is verified by Homeland Security memos according to Reuters. The expanded threat of deportations is likely to cause a flood of refugees needing asylum in Canada. Partial sources online: "Former NDP, Bloc MP takes leadership role in far right Quebec group La Meute," Elysha Enos, Stephen Smith, Feb. 18, 2017, CBC News; "Montreal becomes 'sanctuary city' after unanimous vote of approval," Benjamin Shingler, Feb. 20, 2017, CBC News; "Groups call Montreal's move to become sanctuary city positive but symbolic," the Canadian Press, Feb. 20, 2017, News 1130; " "Quebec philosopher changes mind on religious symbols after mosque shooting," The Canadian Press, "Feb. 14, 2017, CTV News; "Why Denis Coderre wants to make Montreal a sanctuary city," Benjamin Shingler, Feb. 16, 2017, CBC News; "DHS Memos: Speed Up Mass Deportations & Prosecute Parents Who Help Undocumented Children Enter U.S.," Juan Gonzalez/ Franco Ordonez, Tim Warden-Hertz, Feb.20, 2017, Democracy Now!; "Trump administration to expand groups of immigrants to be deported -documents," Julia Edwards Ainsley & Diane Bartz, Feb. 21, 2017, Reuters.
Yemen: according to the UK's Ministry of Defense, Saudi Arabia has committed an alleged 252 violations of international humanitarian law in Yemen. The Independent reports that UK weapons exports to Saudi Arabia since its Yemen offensive began amount to 3.3 billion pounds, and weapons can't be legally supplied to actions breaking international law, and that the UK's Campaign Against the Arms Trade is taking the government to court. In Yemen, South Sudan, Nigeria, and Somalia 1.4 million children are at risk of death from malnutrition. Specifically in Yemen the UN Children's Fund has reported 63,000 children died in 2016 from malnutrition, half a million are about to die with "severe acute malnutrition," while 2.2 million children suffer acute malnutrition (EIRNS). Humanitarian aid is not being allowed to reach the people. Ongoing genocide warning. Previous. Previous. Partial sources online: "Ministry of Defense finds ‘staggering violations of humanitarian law’ by Saudi coalition forces in Yemen," Bethan McKernan, Jan. 27, 2017. The Independent; "Yemen Genocide Accelerates: Worst Humanitarian Crisis in the World Now, Says UN OCHA," Press Release, Feb. 3, 2017, EIRNS; "UNICEF: ‘63,000 Yemeni Children Died in 2016 from Malnutrition’," Feb. 1, 2017, Asharq Al-Awsat.
South Sudan: UN humanitarian aid convoys are being blocked at government checkpoints and by opposition forces as well. Food and medical supplies are not reaching the people (A similar impediment to humanitarian aid occurs in Yemen). A famine is declared by the government and the UN as 100,000 face starvation and a million risk famine. By summer, without relief 5.5 million risk severe food shortages. The Washington Post notes that the cause of this famine is warfare disrupting the agriculture in the two counties most affected, - "in Unity, an important oil producing state in the north." Our genocide warning follows a recurring pattern affecting the native peoples of resource rich regions. The formation of South Sudan can be seen as a U.S. State Department service to International resource corporations. This pattern is not likely to cease until the NATO country genocide prevention organizations recognize this and lobby for application of the law to resource corporations invested in the area. In Yemen, South Sudan, Nigeria, and Somalia 20 million people risk death from starvation in the next six months according to the chief economist of the World Food Program; 1.4 million children are at risk of death from malnutrition. Previous. Partial sources online: "Aid convoys blocked in South Sudan, U.N. says," Denis Dumo, Dec. 1, 2016, Reuters; "Famine declared in South Sudan, with 100,000 people facing starvation," Rael Ombuor, Feb. 20, 2017, The Washington Post; "Four famines mean 20 million may starve in the next six months," Tom Miles, Feb. 16, 2017, Reuters.
February 10, 2017 Syria Colombia
Syria: (updated). Night's Lantern has provided genocide warnings concerned for Syria since 2012. A new report by Amnesty International alleges 13,000 prisoners have been hung by the government in Syrian prisons since 2011. Over 17,000 others are thought to have died in prison. It's apparent that Syria is increasingly subject to a propaganda war: Amnesty's allegations shift some responsibility for the immense amount of raw death in Syria to its President Assad. Allegations of horrible war crimes increase international pressures for intervention under "the right to protect." The truth is acutely necessary because propaganda for war (intervention) leads to continuing the slaughter and displacement of the Syrian population. The Assad government denies the claims of Amnesty's report and declares the executions of any prisoners follow due process of law. One notes that Amnesty's claims serve U.S. and NATO policies (Amnesty's an Anglo-American NGO with a combined U.K and U.S. income of 86.9 million dollars in 2015). For many years it didn't include the U.S. and Canada in its listing of countries where human rights violations might even occur. Syria won't let Amnesty or other U.S. and NATO oriented human rights organizations enter the country. So this Amnesty report has to rely on sources outside Syria; it draws its witnesses from refugees who have chosen to support NATO countries. The terrible details of Amnesty's "Human slaughterhouse" report, are coldly pieced together allegations assumed to be facts. The report is accompanied by a video with technologically impressive computer simulations of what Syrian prison is like and selected sound clips from survivors. Appearing at the same time is Amnesty's short cartoon describing the injustice and horror of the imprisonment. Animation as reporting is emotionally manipulative, a purposeful step aside from reality, and useful tool for propagandists. The cartoon is emotive propaganda. Those who trust Amnesty for non-partisan reporting of human rights abuses will be disappointed. Evidence as proof is needed. Without entirely discounting the report one notes that it coincides with the formula of propaganda warfare previously used against Iraq's Saddam Hussein, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia's Slobodan Miloševic (who was later found to be innocent at international court after his curious death in the court's prison), Libya's Muammar Gaddafi - leaders purveyed as terrible war criminals by the Western media but supported by substantial portions of their people. Subsequently their countries were bombed. Tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of innocent people were killed. The leaders were killed. The information wars initiated terrible crimes. An objective report on Syria's prisons would make some effort to present both sides of the conflict in Syria and look for a way to release other prisoners. Instead the Amnesty report and videos escalate the seriousness and irrationality of possible war crimes by the Assad government in suggesting that the prisoners were/are civilians, while its report clarifies Saydnaya Prison as a military prison for military people. Any torture and abuse of a prisoner is a crime, and any prisoner's death is also a tragedy, whether the victims are Assad's military opposition and linked with ISIS, or innocent civilians found guilty by a "court." What is being ignored is that these prisoners, their alleged mass hangings, their deaths from jail conditions, are the result of destabilization and war brought to Syria by foreign countries wanting regime change, England, France and the U.S. among the countries who have covertly attacked Assad's Syria to displace him and in 2012 officially recognized the rebel terrorist opposition as Syria's legitimate government. Partial sources online: "Amnesty Report Accuses Syria of Executing Thousands Since War Began," Anne Barnard, Feb. 6, 2017, The New York Times; "Human Slaughterhouse: Mass Hangings and Extermination at Saydnaya Prison, Syria," 2016, Amnesty International London; "Human slaughterhouse: Mass hangings and extermination at Saydnaya prison, Syria," Feb. 6, 2016, Amnesty U.S.A.; "Harrowing accounts of torture, inhuman conditions and mass deaths in Syria's prisons," Aug. 18, 2016, Amnesty International; "Inside Saydnaya: Syria's Torture Prison," Aug. 18, 2016, Amnesty International Youtube [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysgnadic3Yo >]; "NGOs and Media Disinformation: How We Were Misled About Syria by Amnesty International," Tim Hayward, Jan. 23, 2017, Tim Hayward; "Amnesty International Admits Syrian "Saydnaya" Report Fabricated Entirely in UK," Tony Cartalucci, Feb. 9, 2017, Land Destroyer; "Up to 13,000 secretly hanged in Syrian jail, says Amnesty," Martin Chulov, Feb. 7, 2017, theguardian; "'They treated us like animals': Nearly 18,000 have died in Syrian prisons since 2011, report finds," Aig. 17, 2016, CBC News; "Hearsay Extrapolated - Amnesty Claims Mass Executions In Syria, Provides Zero Proof," Feb. 17, 2017, Moon of Alabama; "Recognition of Opposition Groups as the Legitimate Representative of a People," Stefan Talmon, May 5, 2013, Chinese Journal of International Law; "Human Slaughterhouse: Amnesty International Says Up to 13,000 Hanged at Syrian Prison" Nermeen Shaikh / Nicolette Waldman, Feb. 9, 2017, Democracy Now!; "Syria rejects Amnesty report on hangings at Saydnaya prison," Feb. 8, 2017, BBC News.Europe: while forced sterilization is no longer permitted, it is being forced on some transgender people in order for them to legally change their sexual identity, and in some cases to receive health care and other services of the State. By 2016, 23 European countries are listed on the Trans Rights Europe Map, 2016, as requiring sterilization of transgender people for gender recognition; not requiring sterilization: Iceland, Ireland, U.K., Norway, Sweden, Denmark, The Netherlands, Estonia, Germany, Poland, Belarus, Lichtenstein, Austria, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Malta. TGEU warns that transgender rights and protection within Europe remain low. The Washington Blade reports that on January 1, 2017, Denmark became the first nation of the world "to officially remove transgender identities from its list of mental health disorders." The World Health Organization's classification of transsexualism in its International Classification of Disorders is under revision. Some consider treatment of the LGBT communities an index of a country's fascism. TechCrunch reports that within an hour of U.S. President Trump taking office the White House web site deleted its page concerned with LGBT rights - whitehouse.gov/lgbt; also noted: the words "climate change" no longer appear on the site. Partial sources online: "Trans Rights Europe Map, May 2013," May 17, 2013, TGEU Transgender Europe; "Trans Rights Europe Map, May 10,2016," TGEU Transgender Europe; "Denmark no longer considers transgender people mentally ill," Maximilian Sycamore, Jan. 4, 2017, The Washington Blade; "Denmark to declassify being transgender as mental disorder," Agence France-Presse, June 1, 2016, theguardian; "The White House’s LGBT rights page has disappeared," Sarah Buhr, Jan 21, 2017, TechCrunch.Colombia: the peace treaty between the Government and most guerrilla groups in Colombia's long war with itself, is accompanied by renewed efforts for justice in the courts. 200 cases are being brought against domestic and multi-national companies, many of them familiar to the U.S., and many of them who have allegedly used paramilitary death squads to enforce corporate policies in labor relations: the murder of labor leaders and workers protesting for their rights. Despite the fact that it is difficult to bring large international corporations to trial, cases of crimes against humanity are initiated against Chiquita's (Chiquita Brands International was previously known as United Fruit Company) subsidiary among others (possibly Dole, Del Monte, Coca Cola, Pepsi, Drummond, as well as the large locals Postobon, Cementos Argos). Partial sources online: ''Para-economics | Fact sheet,'' Brian Levesque,Sept. 22, 2016, Colombia Reports; "Dole and Del Monte also facing crimes against humanity charges for financing death squads in Colombia: report," Adriaan Alsema, Feb. 4, 2017, Colombia Reports; "Colombia Charges Corporations with Crimes Against Humanity," Callum Cleary, Feb. 9, 2017, Law Street.
February 5, 2017 Ukraine Quebec City update
Ukraine: anti-Semitism is increasing. Night's Lantern re-affirms its genocide warning of March 2014 and September 2015 for Ukrainian Jews. Haaretz reports efforts to recruit neo-Nazis in Brazil to fight pro-Russian forces in the Ukraine; southern Brazil is believed to host about a hundred thousand supporters of Hitler. On New Years Day 2017 Ukrainian nationalists with portraits of Stephen Bandera marched through the streets of Kiev in a torchlight parade shouting "Juden raus!" while police looked on. In 1939 and 1940 Bandera helped prepare the Ukraine for the Nazi invasion, and a week after operation Barbarossa became chief of the new Ukrainian State. As a leading Nazi collaborator he is held responsible for the genocide of thousands and thousands of Jews and Poles. In 2017 the Ukraine's Jewish community is partially dispersed and feels a lack of support from Israel; Ukrainian nationalist pro-Holocaust sentiments increase (TV-Novosti). In early November the graffiti -"Death to the Jews" was found on Chernivtsi's Central Synagogue, as was a cross. On November 19th the monument to six thousand Jews murdered at Mogileve (Belarus) in 1941 was defaced with black paint. Arutz Sheva7 reports that mass graves with thousands of victims of the Holocaust throughout the Ukraine are being desecrated and looted for gold (teeth), jewelry, and "gruesome souvenirs." U.S. Senators Graham and McCain are reported in the Ukraine urging the Ukraine Government's army to act against the defenders of ethnic Russians. In WWII the Ukraine's nationalists fought against the Russians - alongside the Nazis. During postwar Ukrainian immigration to Canada, Ukrainians fronted Canada's admission in 1950 of up to 2000 members of the Nazi Waffen-SS Galician Division held in British P.O.W. camps, to strengthen Canada's anti-communism during the cold war. Canada's attachment to right-wing Ukrainians runs deep since a third of Canada's Communist Party membership was said to be left-wing Ukrainians back in the 1930s. This tension is partly responsible for official Canada's overbearing anti-Communism and denigration of Russia. Russia Insider reports that a Ukrainian grandfather of Canada's current Foreign Secretary Christy Freeland, said to have brought his family to Canada to 'escape the Russians,' was in fact a Nazi collaborator in the Ukraine during the mass murders of Jews and Poles in WWII. Partial sources online: "Brazilian Neo-Nazis Recruited to Fight pro-Russian Rebels in Ukraine ," JTA, Jan. 12, 2017, Haaretz; "‘Lights going out on Jewish community in Ukraine’ – Ukrainian Jewish Committee head," Feb. 3, 2017, TV-Novosti; "Ukrainian Jewish leader says community in danger of extinction," Tamara Zieve, Feb. 2, 2017, Jersualem Post; "Graves of Holocaust victims looted, desecrated across Ukraine," Staff, Feb. 2, 2017, Arutz Sheva7; "Sens. Graham and McCain Visit Ukraine Troops, Urge Offensive," Jason Ditz, Feb. 3, 2017, antiwar.com; "‘Death to Jews’ sprayed on Ukrainian synagogue," Nov. 25, 2016, JTA; "Russia Cringes as Kiev Commemorates Nazi Patsies Who Terrorized Wartime Ukraine," Jan. 6, 2017, Sputnik International; "Canada, Ukraine, and the Ghosts of Babi Yar," J. B. Gerald, Mary 22, 2014, nightslantern.ca [access:< http://www.nightslantern.ca/canada-ukraine-and-the-ghosts-of-babi-yar.htm >]; "Banned in Russia, Goebbles’ Diaries to be Published in Ukraine," JNi.Media, Jan. 26, 2017, The Jewish Press; "SCOOP: Canada's New Foreign Minister Lying About Family's Ukrainian Nazi Past," John Helmer, Jan. 19, 2017, Russia Insider; "Liberals brought Nazi vets to Canada: Glorifying Ukrainian-Canadian Veterans of OUN/UPA Terrorism," Richard Sanders, Dec. 14, 2016, "babble" rabble.ca; "Left-Right Camps: A Century of Ukrainian Canadian Internment," Richard Sanders, March 2016, (Issue # 68) Press for Conversion!.
Québec City update (see previous): it is now seven days since six Muslim worshippers in Quebec City were murdered at their place of worship. In Canada many are still mourning. Many others are protesting the politics of hate. Government politicians have made efforts to assure the Muslim communities how welcome Muslims are in Canada. How do we know the politicians' words are genuine? (to continue "Canada and the politics of Islamophobia").
February 3, 2017
Québec City, update: (see previous) the media narrative of the Québec shootings has evolved, from the initial report of a witness claiming two masked attackers who shouted "Allahu akbar" in a Québecois accent and shooting worshippers, to the arrest of two suspects. One claimed to be "involved" and turned himself in at some distance from the crime scene. The other apprehended near the mosque was found to be a good Samaritan who had fled after confusing an armed policeman with the attacker(s). With the release of this good Samaritan no explanation was available for the witness statement of two masked men and the story was dropped from North American media despite its corroboration by other witnesses. The original witness of two attackers is "convinced" that he saw two attackers despite the official story (The Irish Sun). Current media reporting claims police find Alexandre Bissonnette the only suspect and no other attackers are sought... Media coverage of this suspect suggests he is right wing, pro-Donald Trump, pro-Marine Le Pen (whose party is finding the Québec massacre "deplorable"), pro-Israeli Defense Forces, and known for anti-immigrant and anti-feminist statements. He has an interest in guns. But his interests include Jack Layton (serious, inclusive and on the left when compared to the others, an effective leader of the NDP who died too quickly from prostate cancer as he neared power); a student of anthropology and political science, he was interested in saving the environment and worked for Québec's blood services. The mass killing and wounding steps into another behavioral dimension, and from information supplied the public so far this suspect could be simply a "sacrifice", a scapegoat to satisfy the public's need for some answer to a horrible crime. A recent CBC encapsulation of witness statements about the shootings finds the shooter loading and reloading professionally. While police security was said to be increased at Québec mosques, shortly before the large memorial service in Montreal for three of the victims February 2nd, a window was smashed and eggs thrown at the mosque in Pointe-Saint-Charles. Montreal police report 14 hate crimes since the Québec shooting. Partial sources online: "Only 1 suspect in deadly Québec mosque shooting, police say," Jan 29 / Jan. 30, 2017, CBC News; "‘I FEEL BAD’ What ‘student’ gunman who stormed Québec mosque told cops as he gave himself up after killing six – as cops reveal they now have only ONE suspect," Simon Tomlinson, Paul Harper, Sam Webb, Jan. 30, 2017, The Irish Sun; "Québec mosque terror attack: Six dead after gunmen shout "Allahu Akbar" and open fire during evening prayers," Steve Robson and Chris Kitching, Jan 30, 2017, The Irish Mirror; "Montreal mosque has window smashed, eggs thrown at it," CTVNews.ca Staff, Feb. 2, 2017, CTV News; "10 minutes of terror: What happened in the Québec City mosque Sunday night," Jonathan Montpetit, feb.1 /Feb 2, 2017, CBC News; "What They Won’t Tell Us About Quebec Mosque Attack," Faith Goldy, Jan. 31, 2017, therebel.media[access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=18&v=gV62pqS7AAA >].
January 31, 2017 Yemen Ontario & Québec Québec City
Yemen: early Sunday morning , Jan. 29th, a U.S. commando unit attacked an alleged terrorist headquarters in Baida Province, central Yemen. Described as an anti-terrorist action the incident verifies commitment of U.S. forces to the conflict in Yemen; one U.S. military person is reported killed and four wounded. While U.S. sources are reporting no civilian wounded and the deaths of 14 alleged militants, subsequent non U.S. sources report Apache helicopters attacking the homes of 3 tribal chiefs, a school, a mosque, a medical facility all linked to Al-Quaeda, and resulting in the deaths of 41 suspected militants, 8 women and 8 children including an eight year old girl who is the daughter of Anwar al-Aulaqi, reported by her grandfather to have died slowly after being shot in the neck. Her death follows a drone attack under President Obama which killed Imam al-Aulaqi's American born son, age 16, on a picnic with friends. Imam al-Aulaqi, a cleric and American citizen was placed on the U.S. President's killing list in 2010 and murdered without a trial in 2011. A report from Democracy Now! mentions the current President's election threats to wipe out the families of alleged terrorists - a war crime. The murder of innocents is unacceptable. The assassination of suspected individuals is unacceptable. The intentional murder of a suspect's family is unacceptable. Extra-judicial killing is unacceptable. The United States is not at war with Yemen. The UN has declared that 18.8 million people in Yemen urgently require humanitarian assistance and protection. Partial sources online: "Obama Killed a 16-Year-Old American in Yemen. Trump Just Killed His 8-Year-Old Sister," Glenn Greenwald, Jan. 30, 2017, The Intercept; "One U.S. commando dead, four wounded in raid on Al Qaeda in Yemen," W.J. Hennigan, Jan. 29, 2017, Los Angeles Times; "UN: Yemen could face famine in 2017, over 2/3 of population in urgent need of aid," Jan. 28, 2017, TV-Novosti; "UPDATED: '57 dead' in first US raid on Qaeda in Yemen under Trump," AFP, Jan. 29, 2017, ahramonline; "Against the killing of Anwar al-Aulaqi & others," J.B.Gerald, April 19, 2010, nightslantern.ca.
Ontario & Québec: following a day of nationwide protests at international airports in the U.S. all in growing opposition to U.S. President Trump's refusal to admit citizens from seven Muslim countries as well as any refugees, on January 30th Canada's primary U.S. consular and embassy offices became the focus of midday demonstrations in Toronto , Ottawa and Montreal. The consulate in Toronto closed for the day. Speaking in Ottawa, Alex Neve, secretary general of Canadian Amnesty International, asked for Canada to immediately rescind its designation of the U.S. as a "safe State." This might open refugee status to asylum seekers from the U.S. or some entering Canada through the U.S.. The emphasis on protest was muted by national mourning at the deaths of the Muslims killed in the attack on worshippers at the Québec Islamic Cultural Centre in Québec City (see below).
Québec City: in a widely reported incident the Québec Islamic Cultural Centre was entered on the evening of January 29th by - according to initial reports at least two masked gunmen who shot and killed six worshippers with others wounded and five in critical condition. Canada is in mourning for the Muslim community with vigils across the country through the evening of January 30th. A premeditated killing of worshippers as they pray is uncharacteristic of terrorist attacks [Editor's note 02.08.2017: this isn't strictly true; on September 15, 1963 just before the 11 o'clock morning service a bomb we set off in Birmingham Alabama's 16th Street Baptist Church; four young girls were killed and over twenty other people injured; the identity of the killers was covered by the FBI until after FBI Director Hoover's death in 1972 and three Ku Klux Klansmen were eventually convicted of murder; on March 24, 1980 in El Salvador, while celebrating mass in a hospital chapel Archbishop Óscar Romero was shot and killed by an El Savadorian death squad; Roberto D'Aubuisson was accused of ordering the assassination but no one was ever prosecuted] and unlike Canada (It may remind Americans of the Charleston South Carolina murder of nine in a Christian prayer group by white supremacist Dylann Roof, sentenced to death January 11). There is some history of Islamophobia in Québec causing Québec's National Assembly to unanimously pass a bill October 3, 2015, condemning Islamophobia (previous). The January 29th attack in Québec City follows destruction by fire of a mosque in Victoria Texas in the early hours of January 28th. The Muslim cultural centre at Sept-Iles Québec suffered a fire on September 23, 2016, considered a probable arson; the centre was previously vandalized and damaged in October. Again in Québec City, June 2016, someone left a pig's head on the steps of the Québec Islamic Cultural Centre. Evidence of extreme anti-Islamic sentiment in Québec, parallels the sentiments of European and U.S. neo-fascist anti-immigrant movements (Le Pen in France, Wilders in the Netherlands, and Trump in the U.S.) which neo-fascist Québec movements look to and several align with. Among the extreme right groups in Québec - Soldiers of Odin, La Meute, Atalante Québec, PEGIDA Québec, the Fédération des Québécois de Souche (FQS), are those known to oppose Islamic immigration while some will defend corporate use of Canadian resources and ... pipelines. A suspect in the Québec City killings who is reported to have escaped the crime scene and peacefully 'turned himself in' five kilometres away without incident, Alexandre Bissonnette, was charged with six counts of first degree murder and five counts of attempted murder. No mention is currently made of at least one other masked gunman consistently mentioned in early reports; ie. there seems to be at least one masked shooter who was not caught. Update. Partial sources online: "Texas mosque destroyed in early-morning blaze; cause unknown," AP, Jan. 28, 2017, Daily Sabah; "Québec mosque shooting: Suspects not known to police," Jan. 30, 2017, Montreal Gazette; "Muslim cultural center in Canada attacked for fourth time," Dec., 26, 2016, Daily Sabah; "6 dead, 2 arrested after shooting at Quebec City mosque," Jan. 29, 2017, CBC News.
from River with Lights, poems
January 27, 2017
"Thirty Seconds To Midnight - The Final Wake Up Call"
a film by Regis Tremblay 1:38:36 minutes [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h0bsrFyLz6U >]
January 26, 2017 Yemen U.S. U.K.
Yemen: the death toll in Yemen has reached ten thousand people, with forty thousand injured, three million displaced and nearly 18 million people requiring humanitarian assistance. The conflict between the government and Houthi rebels is understood as a proxy war by Saudi Arabia against the people. Among arms suppliers, a 15 billion dollar arms contract between the Saudis and Canada (the deal made with General Dynamics Land Systems of London Ontario under the previous Conservative government and furthered by Prime Minister Trudeau's Liberal government), was restrained by a lawsuit which has been rejected by Federal Court. Common sense suggests that supplying arms to Saudi Arabia during its destruction of Yemen is a war crime. The Globe and Mail article doesn't name the company which will make the armoured vehicles. A genocide warning for the people of Yemen continues. Partial sources online: "10,000 People Have Been Killed In Yemen’s Bloody War, U.N. Confirms," Joseph Hincks Jan. 17, 2017, Time; "Yemen civil war: Widespread starvation forces people to eat food from rubbish dumps," Peter Walker, Jan. 9, 2017, Independent; "Federal court rejects suit to block Liberals’ Saudi arms deal ," Steven Chase, Jan. 24, 2017, The Globe and Mail; "Federal court rejects bid to block $15B Saudi Arabia arms deal with General Dynamics," Jacquelyn LeBel, Jan. 24, 2017, AM980; "Genocide In Yemen: Media Complicit In US-Saudi War Crimes," Mnar Muhawesh, Jan. 17, 2017, Mintpress News; "Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen," current, Wikipedia.
1. In a direct threat to freedom of the press, during counter inauguration demonstrations in Washington D.C. 6 media workers covering the demonstrations were arrested and charged with felony counts which could carry sentences of 10 years or $ 25,000 fines. This attempt to silence press covering demonstrations suggests police foresee using tactics which violate the law. Partial sources online: "Four more journalists get felony charges after covering inauguration unrest," Jon Swaine, Jan.24, 2017, theguardian; "Journalists Covering Inauguration Protests Face ‘Felony Riot’ Charges," Hilary Hanson, Jan. 24, 2017, Huffington Post.
2. Trump has signed executive orders approving the Keystone XL pipeline (reversing Obama's decision), and the Dakota Access pipeline. News of the Keystone XL approval was welcomed by Alberta's Premier and Canada's Prime Minister Trudeau. The rights of the companies and U.S.government to continue Dakota Access pipeline (previous) without Indigenous approval will be challenged in court and on the land. Partial sources online: "Trump gives OK to Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines," Jan. 24, 2017, CBC News; "Trudeau welcomes Trump's Keystone XL decision," John Paul Tasker, Jan.24, 2017, CBC News.
3. A bill requiring the U.S. withdrawal from the United Nations, the American Sovereignty Restoration Act of 2017 was introduced in the House of Representatives, January 3rd. Partial sources online: "Trump’s Plan to Kill UN Begins with Withdrawal Bill," GPD, Jan. 23, 2017, Veterans Today; "US Exit from United Nations Could Become Reality with Fresh Bill," RT News / Jan. 23, 2027, Jan. 24, 2017, Global Research.
4. Rex Tillerson, nominated for Secretary of State has indicated he'll seek repatriation of Assata Shakur from Cuba, to continue her imprisonment in the U.S.. The two million dollar reward currently offered for Ms. Shakur is generally ignored by everyone. Cuba has previously stated and reiterated its refusal to give up Shakur and is unlikely to betray Fidel's guarantee of asylum, the Cuban struggle, and Cuba's influence on the future of the Americas. Background. Partial sources online: "Trump’s Secretary of State Wants Assata Shakur Re-Imprisoned," Jan. 23, 2017, TeleSur; "Pelican Bay, Lynne Stewart, Ramsey Muñiz, Assata Shakur: Updates," J.B.Gerald, Sept. 14, 2013, nightslantern.ca; "Who Is Assata Shakur? Rex Tillerson Wants Cuba To Hand Over Black Lives Matter Hero And Fugitive," Josh Keefe, Jan.24, 2017, IBT.
5. In accord with his campaign statements Trump has signed an executive order to start building a wall along the U.S. Mexico border. The New York Times claims to have received a draft document for the President's announcement to stop the refugee admission program entirely for four months, when it is expected the number of refugees admitted will be halved. Round up and deportations of undocumented immigrants will proceed. The expected order plans to ban outright the admission of any person from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, in to the States for the period of a month. The NYT points out the wording of the order may change before publication expected later this week. A draft of the order was published by the Los Angeles Times. Partial sources online: "Trump orders moves on border wall and 'sanctuary cities' and is considering a refugee ban," Brian Bennett & Noah Bierman, Jan.25, 2017, Los Angeles Times; "Donald Trump signs executive order to build wall with Mexico: 'Beginning today the United States gets back control of its borders'," Harriet Alexander & David Lawler, Jan. 25, 2017, The Telegraph; "Trump Orders Mexican Border Wall to Be Built and Is Expected to Block Syrian Refugees," Julie Hirschfeld Davis, Jan. 25, 2017, The New York Times
6. On January 25th, in parallel to the increasing loss of people's rights, the Dow Jones Industrial Average of blue chip stocks exceeded the 20,000 point mark for the first time in history. Partial sources online: "Dow Jones industrial average finishes above 20,000 for first time," Pete Evans, Jan. 25.2017, CBC News.
7. The Environmental Protection Agency has been ordered not to release any information to the public without prior approval from political appointees. And the EPA has been ordered to take down its climate change page from the department's website. In Canada the Conservative Harper government used a similar tactic to muzzle scientists in order to hide from the public the effects of climate change and other threats to the environment by corporate industry and the military. Partial sources online: "Trump issues gag order on Environmental Protection Agency staff," Brady Dennis & Juliet Eilperin (The Washington Post), Jan. 24, 2017, The Toronto Star; "Trump administration: EPA studies, data must undergo political review before release," AP, Jan. 25, 2017, theguardian; "EPA Reportedly Ordered To Remove Climate Change Webpage," David Kroll, Jan. 25, 2017, Forbes.
U.K.: the growing strength of nationalism and populism shown in the Brexit vote is accompanied by a continuing increase in hate crimes , including those toward the LGBT community and disabled people. Last October The Washington Post reported a sharp rise in U.K. homophobic attacks. Partial sources online: "Homophobic attacks in the U.K. have risen 147% since Brexit, report says," Jennifer Hassan, Oct. 12, 2016, The Washington Post; "UK: 20 homophobic hate crimes a day in England and Wales," The Pink News, Jan. 19, 2017, ICARE.
January 22, 2017 Uzbekistan Europe Belgium The Netherlands U.S.
Uzbekistan & Tashkent: reports indicate a State medical policy for the sterilization of women who have two or more children. Sterilizations are being performed without consent. Women of minority groups and lower income groups are the primary victims, and are increasingly bearing their children at home. According to a correspondent linked to the Open Society Foundation, the program has affected tens of thousands. Partial sources online: "Uzbekistan: Tashkent Pursuing Forced Sterilization Policy," Deirdre Tynan, March 22, 2010, Eurasianet.org; "Forced sterilization of women reportedly widespread in Uzbekistan," RFE/RL, Dec. 16, 2013, Asia Plus Media Group.
Belgium: Tzipi Livni was Israel's Minister of Foreign Affairs during Israel's Operation Cast Lead which killed 1400 Palestinians. She and other Israeli officials are accused of crimes against humanity and war crimes in Gaza, by a group of the victims, in a Belgian court action of June 23, 2010 (In July 2010 a similar complaint was made at court in Morocco). Planning to attend European Parliament on January 23rd, 2017, she was to be interrogated by court order and arrested. Ms. Livni has cancelled her appearance because of "illness." Partial sources online: "Belgium to Arrest Former Israeli Foreign Minister for 'War Crimes'," Middle East Monitor, Jan. 20, 2017, Global Research; "Ex-Israeli FM Tzipi Livni cancels Brussels visit after Belgian court's arrest order," Jan. 21, 2017, Ummid.com.U.S., historical note:
The Netherlands: On December 16th 2016, Geert Wilders was given no sentence by the court which convicted him of inciting racism and group defamation (he asked a crowd if they would like fewer Moroccans around - see previous). The Islamophobic leader of the PVV far right political party is currently leading in polls for the country's next election March 15, 2017. He tweets, "The Netherlands will be strong again !" On Jan. 21rst Europe Online magazine reports him in Germany telling supporters in German that Europe needs a "proud Germany;" and because of Islamization European women are "frightened of showing their blonde hair." Partial sources online: "Netherlands: The conviction of Geert Wilders," eds. Vonk, Dec. 21, 2016, In Defence of Marxism; "EXTRA Dutch anti-Islam leader Wilders tells Germans to stand proud," Jan 21, 2017, Europe Online magazine; "Conviction for Racist Speech Could Help Make Geert Wilders Dutch Prime Minister," Robert Mackey, Dec. 9, 2016, The Intercept.
Sacco and Vanzetti (Woody Guthrie) 2011 [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=brhzBlyJgqo >]
Sacco's letter to his son [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QKY1o_XOqDs >].
January 20, 2017 Italy U.S.
Italy: (see previous Argentina) an Italian court has found the former president of Bolivia, Luis Garcia Meza Tejada , and the former president of Peru, Francisco Morales Bermudez, guilty of war crimes and sentenced them in absentia to life in prison. Garcia is already serving 30 years in Bolivia. These are among eight life sentences handed down by the court for murdering 23 Italians under Operation Condor, a 1970s and 80s collaboration among South American governments to kill left wing representatives and activists internationally. Operation Condor is legally relevant to the U.S. since it is believed to have been initiated by the U.S., partly through the inception of Chile's feared DINA with the help of the CIA station chief in Chile and its early collaboration with the Argentine right wing; DINA commander Manuel Contreras who called together the formative meeting of Operation Condor on November 28, 1975, was in the pay of the CIA; a U.S. military base in Central America provided the encoded communication facilities for Operation Condor; in the late 70's Argentina's Extraterritorial Task Force provided covert support for Operation Condor - out of Florida. Currently released CIA memos are providing detailed information of CIA knowledge of and participation in Operation Condor's activities. At the Italian court Operation Condor is considered a criminal enterprise. Media reports of Operation Condor related trials in Italy and South America carry no mention of Americans. The shielding of embassy officials, military attachés, military personnel engaged in torture, CIA field agents, U.S. handlers and effectors of the policy locally, maintains the power of a class of war criminals within these South American countries, and within the U.S.. In Italy the initial list of defendants included 140 military officers, but through death and age the list of remaining defendants was reduced to 27, and 19 were absolved of involvement. Background. More background. "Desaparecidos." Partial sources online: "Italy sentences two former South American leaders to life in prison for Operation Condor murders<" Steve Scherer, Jan. 17, 2017, Reuters; "Expectation in Uruguay For Sentence of Military Officers in Italy," Jan. 17, 2017, Prensa Latina; "Italy convicts eight South Americans in Plan Condor trial," Jan 18, 2017, BBC News; "The Undead Ghost of Operation Condor," J. Patrice McSherry, Spring 2005 Logos 4.2 online; "Released ‘Operation Condor’ Files Show CIA Torture in Argentina," Dec. 12, 2016, TeleSur.
U.S.: before leaving office President Obama granted clemency to an additional 330 "nonviolent drug offenders." See previous. Political prisoners Leonard Peltier, Mumia Abu-Jamal, Sundiata Acoli, Imam Jamil Abdullah al-Amin, Dr. Rafil Dhafir, David Gilbert, Imam Sheik Abdel-Rahman, Abu Hamza al-Masri, Fahad Hashmi, Robert Seth Hayes, Jaan Laaman, Tom William Manning, Tarek Mehanna, Ramiro "Ramsey" Muñiz, Jose Padilla, Russell Maroon Shoatz, Dr. Mutulu Shakur, Aafia Siddiqui, Juvenal Ovidio Ricardo Palmero Pineda, Anayibe Rojas Valderrama, among others, remain imprisoned without benefit of trials free from the State's political uses, or compassion. As for the prison camp of Guantanamo, elected to close Guantanamo and after consistently lying for eight years that the torture camp would be closed, Barrack Obama leaves office with his campaign promise unfulfilled. It should be noted that in the year 2016 the former Nobel peace prize winner dropped at least 26,171 bombs primarily on Syria and Iraq, as military actions continue to present the greatest threat to the environment and global warming. He is replaced this January 20th, by Donald John Trump, a New York businessman with no prior political experience. Partial sources online: "Obama grants final 330 commutations to nonviolent drug offenders," Sari Horwitz, Jan. 19, 2017, The Washington Post; "White House Concedes It Won't Close Guantanamo After All," Josh Lederman and Ben Fox, AP, Jan. 18, 2017, Military.com; "America dropped 26,171 bombs in 2016. What a bloody end to Obama's reign," Medea Benjamin, Jan. 9, 2017, the guardian.
January 18, 2017 Guatemala U.S.
#19Guatemala: the re-trial of José Efraín Ríos Montt, scheduled to begin January 11th was postponed this year once again, to resolve procedural complications. Ríos Montt's conviction on charges of genocide in 2013 was set aside by a superior court of questionable standing in a spurious decision. The case of Ríos Montt presents a study in the ineffectiveness of applying justice to the worst war criminals of the elite, in countries where the system of justice is managed by the elite. The impunity of Ríos Montt's escape from justice suggests an ongoing genocide warning for Guatemala's Indigenous peoples and provides encouragement for other criminal rulers. To deflect this awareness Guatemala dealt with last year's postponement by charging others, including a regional military commissioner and a base commander with sexual violence during the Ríos Montt regime, re-couching the most shameful crime of genocide into the awful but more familiar crimes of sexual slavery. The system continues prosecution of lower ranking military for specific ugly crimes. In early January of this year U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested a Guatemalan special forces corporal (at-the-time), now a permanent resident of the U.S. with a job in the mailroom of Johns Hopkins University for ten years, wanted for his role in the Dos Erres massacre, a crime under the Ríos Montt regime where the 20 commandos dressed as rebels walked into a village and for two days tortured the men, raped the women, and murdered all two hundred and one including 113 children. Night's Lantern has noted on(Sept. 20, 2015) that Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and the Rockefeller Foundation were sued for alleged connection to experiments on unwitting Guatemalans intentionally infected with syphilis. Previous. Of the five 'Dos Erres fugitives' arrested in the U.S., two who became U.S. citizens are serving ten years apiece in the U.S. for immigration fraud; of the two returned to Guatemala, one tried so far was sentenced in 2012 to 6,060 years in prison (ProPublica). There is some effort to blame low ranks for carrying out crimes of policy, in a crime that began with their training. In other news of Guatemala, Canada's Goldcorp has agreed to sell its Cerro Blanco mining project to Canada's Bluestone Resources, with an option on certain aspects of Goldcorp's Marlin mine which is being closed out while attempting repair to the habitat. The Supreme Court has stopped for now the construction of Oxec I and Oxec II, two hydroelectric dams which the Mayan people of the land are strongly against. Previous. Partial sources online: "Shameful decision to postpone Ríos Montt trial a new stain on Guatemala’s justice system," Jan. 11, 2016, Amnesty International; "Genocide trial for Guatemala ex-dictator Rios Montt suspended," Jan. 11, 2016, Reuters; "Guatemalan soldiers to answer civil war sexual slavery charges in historic trial," Nina Lakhani, Feb. 1, 2016, theguardian; "ICE Arrests Former Kaibiles Linked to Dos Erres Massacre in Guatemala," Jan 10, 2017, TeleSur; "Federal Agents Arrest a Former Guatemalan Soldier Charged With Massacring Civilians," Sebastian Rotella, Jan 10, 2017, ProPublica; "Goldcorp To Sell Cerro Blanco Project In Guatemala To Bluestone Resources," RTT News, Jan.11, 2017, Nasdaq; "Victory for Guatemala's Mayan People," Jan. 15, 2017, TeleSur.
U.S: President Obama has commuted the sentences of 209 prisoners with a pardon or reprieve for an additional 64. This brings to a total of 1385 commutations by this President including 504 commutations of prisoners with life sentences, and a total of 212 pardons. Most of those receiving clemency were serving long sentences for cocaine related charges, usually distribution. Also receiving clemency is Chelsea Manning who managed to release to the American people evidence of war crimes by U.S. military personnel; her sentence is to expire May 17, 2017. Julian Assange, an Australian whose Wikileaks released Chelsea Manning's materials, has said he would allow his own extradition if President Obama released Chelsea Manning, and appropriate strong resistance should be prepared in the event Assange is brought to the U.S.. Oscar Lopez Rivera, the respected Puerto Rican nationalist serving a term of 55 years, is also to be released May 17, 2017. Long term political prisoners (see our "political prisoners updates") who were targeted by COINTELPRO programs and often framed or falsely convicted, have been overlooked for clemency. For example Tom Manning of Massachusetts who shot back when a police person tried to murder him is slated to spend the rest of his life in prison. Early supporters of Mandela, Tom Manning and Jaan Laaman amid their New England working class group were never forgiven for supporting Black Liberation movements. Many of those without clemency are former Black Panthers and others who struggled for the human rights of U.S. Black or Native American communities. A difficulty with the life sentences for unintended crimes, is that no leverage beyond an outdated death penalty is left to counter intentional crimes of terrorism. Partial sources online: "Obama Pardons 2017 Full List: Chelsea Manning, Oscar Lopez Rivera And Others To Get Shortened, Reprieved Sentences," Bruce Wright, Jan. 17, 2017, IBT; "President Obama Has Now Granted More Commutations than Any President in this Nation’s History," Neil Eggleston, Jan. 17, 2017, The White House.
if i could warn you© 1985 john bart gerald, - from plainsongs
where i once came from
not the places where the land is gentle to the people
or the bedrock holding staunchions
but the hearts of grown-up children playing
the victors of the middle class
confused with royalty in their dreams
come true of wasn't that enough
a domain where life was bought
oh those victors of the middle class
if you loved or tried to love or christian loved
or treated with all the tolerance and wisdom
of the religious book they
would fight like death itself
and loving less, won
a momentary victory to say
"you see i am stronger
i belong here"
U.S. Historical note: researching the Voting Rights Act I find that on March 7th, 2015, U.S. President Obama signed H.R. 431, and three in our family, among 8000 for civil rights participating in the March 1965 "Bloody Sunday," or "Turnaround Tuesday," or the Selma to Montgomery March, received the Congressional Gold Medal as "foot soldiers for voting rights." President Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act August 6, 1965. The Voting Rights Act was seriously undermined by a Supreme Court decision to remove Justice Department monitoring of States with a history of unjust voting practices. New efforts are needed to re-establish minority voting rights. Our three who went South from New York to stand for the equal right to vote were Elmer Maas, my wife's uncle, who subsequently lost his college teaching job, was excluded from college teaching work, then joined with the Berrigans in Plowshares Movement actions until his death in 2005; Michael Shields, my friend and wife's first husband, arrested with me in Alabama, who died of illness in the Sixties; as for me I was made a "marshal" by the Movement for the Selma to Montgomery March, was falsely arrested with four other whites on the way home, later - falsely arrested twice in New York City, and gradually excluded from employment as a college teacher and writer. I find no mention of H.R. 431 in archives of The New York Times. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday approaches January 15th - for a note on his assassination see previous. - John Bart Gerald. Partial sources online: "Foot Soldiers Voting Rights Marches Congressional Gold Medal: Public Law 114-5," March 7, 2015, 114th Congress; "Selma marchers awarded Congressional Gold Medal," March 7, 2015, 14 News (Indiana); "Selma marchers awarded Congressional Gold Medal," Raycom News Network, March 7 / April 5, 2015Fox 8 (New Orleans); "Notes from a Montgomery Jail," John Bart Gerald, May 6, 1965, The New York Review of Books.January 11, 2017 Judith Clark Burundi Democratic Republic of Congo U.S. Argentina
New York State: Governor Andrew Cuomo commuted the sentence of Judith Alice Clark who has served 35 years of her 75 year sentence. She is eligible for parole in 2017. Involved in the 1981 Brinks robbery (previous) she didn't commit a crime of violence yet through association was blamed by the families of the Nyack police officer and the Brinks guard who were killed. She received one of the most severe punishments of those involved in the robbery. Despite pleas for clemency from former heads of the New York Bar association her situation looked hopeless until the Governor's compassionate action which also extended clemency to 101 people convicted of non-violent crimes as minors. Partial sources online: "Cuomo Commutes Sentence of Judith Clark, Driver in Deadly Brinks Robbery," Eli Rosenberg, Dec. 30, 2016, The New York Times; "Cuomo’s contemptible pardon for a terrorist," Post Editorial Board, Jan 3, 2017,
; "Seven felons, including Weather Underground member, and 101 others convicted as minors get clemency from Cuomo," Glenn Blain, Dec. 30, 2016, Daily News.
Burundi: (update) the government cabinet Minister of the Environment has been assassinated. This continues a lethal back and forth between the government and its opposition, which threatens the region with a lapse into violence. Euro-American policies suggest military intervention to preclude the possibility of a genocide (see previous), an intervention likely to lead to corporatization of the country's assets. This is a strong factor encouraging a genocide. Calls for intervention have coincided with major mining contracts gained by Russian and Chinese companies. Destabilization is encouraged by the privatisation of Burundi's coffee industry at the insistence of the World Bank; private interests have delayed delivery of pesticides and fertilizers; the crop and industry have been damaged. The Parliament of Burundi has had to place controls on international NGO's in Burundi who are considered to support rebels against Burundi's President Nikurunziza. Burundi has also withdrawn from the International Criminal Court so the Euro-American human rights industry is not well disposed toward President Nikurunziza and any non-African reporting on Burundi should require multiple verification. The attempt to wrest political power from African leaders who are uncooperative with US/NATO corporate takeovers is familiar. Ie.: in Ivory Coast the President was replaced by a former World Bank employee as the people continue to struggle; in Zimbabwe, recovered from colonization, British manipulation of the coffee market, economic disaster and cholera epidemics, Mugabe continues. Partial sources online: "Burundi passes law cracking down on foreign NGOs," AFP, December 24, 2016, Yahoo News; "Coffee sector privatization spells misery to over 4 million Burundians," Jan. 5, 2017, IWACU; "How the West Lost Burundi," Cara Jones, Orion Donovan-Smith, Aug. 25, 2015, FP; "Geopolitics of Central Africa: Relentless Propaganda Attacks on Burundi," Innocent Habonimana, Jan. 8, 2017, Suna Times.
Democratic Republic of Congo: on December 31, 2016 an agreement was reached between the government and the opposition which will allow Joseph Kabila to continue in office until elections at the end of 2017. The Catholic News Agency reports that implementation of the agreement has been worked out by the Catholic bishops of the country. If honoured the accords may save thousands from violence. About 40 people died in the disturbances following President Kabila's refusal to leave office when his term was over on Dec. 19, 2016. During 2016 conflicts displaced over half a million Congolese. Currently approximately two million are internally displaced civilians. The deep Congo adjacent to Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, also hosts refugees and military interests from the neighbouring countries and remains open to de-stabilization by foreign interests and their proxies. A 2016 updated progress report by a UN Group of Experts notes among other violations of international law in the area, Rwanda training Burundi rebels in South Kivu province, and arms entering the region from Rwanda in North Kivu province (see above). Partial sources online: "Catholic leaders in Congo welcome church-mediated accord," Jonathan Luxmoore / Catholic News Service, Jan. 3, 2017, Crux; "Progress Update," Group of Experts on the DRC extended pursuant to resolution 2198 (2015), Jan. 15, 2016, United Nations Security Council Committee Established Pursuant to Resolution 1533 (2004) Concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo; "Democratic Republic of Congo - Complex Emergency Fact Sheet #1, Fiscal Year (FY) 2017," US Agency for International Development, Jan. 6, 2017, reliefweb.
Argentina: Telesur notes: a U.S. intelligence report from 1978 reveals U.S. knowledge of the death flights carried out by Argentine authorities under Operation Condor, yet the U.S. continued to supply aircraft; "in 2016, Francisco Bossi, the mastermind of the death flights, confessed to murdering 6,000 people." Batches of U.S. intelligence reports are being declassified providing information affecting the deaths of 60,000 people under the CIA supported Operation Condor administered by Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina in the 1970s and 1980s, with support from Peru and Venezuela. According to Telesur new information reveals Operation Condor's tracking down of political exiles in other countries. According to Serbia's In news the CIA knew beforehand of the 1976 coup which replaced Eva Peron with a military dictator enforcing a 'dirty war' with its years of atrocities. Papers released on the website of the director of the U.S. National Intelligence Agency state Washington's efforts to pressure Argentina into better human rights practices annoyed Argentina, causing it to strengthen ties to France, "communist " and Arab countries; Argentina purchased 170 jet engines from France (Presidential briefing July 19, 1978). The release of more U.S. papers on 'the dirty war' in Argentina was pledged by U.S. President Obama on his visit to Argentine President Mauricio Macri last March and coincides with Argentina's stated intention to upgrade its military equipment to the cost of 2.5 million dollars. See previous. See "Desaparecidos." Partial sources online: "Argentina Declassification Project," Dept. of State, Dec. 12, 2016, IC on the Record / Office of the Director of National Intelligence [access:< https://icontherecord.tumblr.com/ >]; "New Files Reveal US Sold Argentina Military Aircraft to Dump Bodies in Ocean," Dec. 16, 2016, Telesur; "CIA-Backed Operation Condor Tried to 'Liquidate' Human Rights Activists.," Dec. 13, 2016, Telesur; "US declassifies Argentina's 'Dirty War' files amid reports of military upgrade," Dec. 13, 2016, DW; "Argentina: Released Files Show Washington Knew of Impending Coup," Tihomir Gligorevic, Dec 16, 2016, in news (Serbia).
January 1, 2017 Democratic Republic of the Congo: M.N.C. Uhuru (Joseph Kabasselé) - African Jazz 1960 [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2A726KAof8 >]
2016 suppressed news
A branch that comes from violence will not take root;
for a blighted root is on sheer rock, like reeds by the
banks of a river, which are dried up before any grass; but
kindness, like eternity, will never be cut off, and faithfulness
will be established forever - from Ben Sira
(Dead Sea Scrolls Bible, Abegg et al)
This account is against forgetfulness.
by john bart gerald
graphics by julie maas
guest contributions as noted
19 October 2017