* * *
2017 suppressed news
concerned with the prevention of genocide
by j. b. gerald
graphics by j. maas
November 3, 2018Yemen Washington D.C.
Yemen: the war in Yemen continues beyond reason the genocide of the national group. The aggressor has become Saudi Arabia supported with arms by the U.S., Canada and U.K. who slowly are being forced to confront their business interests faced with the atrocities of a life threatening famine for 7 million children and 7 million adults. According to UNICEF 1.8 million children face starvation now. The UN finds 22 million needing food badly. In 2017 the U.K sold 1.37 billion pounds sterling of arms to Saudi Arabia. Germany has said it will suspend arms sales to Saudi Arabia. With a questionable respect for human life the U.S. president has expressed his preference to protect jobs in the U.S. defense industry. Canada's Justin Trudeau as well has indicated that cancelling the 12 to 15 billion dollar Harper government armored vehicle contracts with the Saudis would be very expensive despite a reasonable concern for the Saudi embassy murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. North American governments are currently preferring profit and privilege to the people of Yemen and their right to life.Partial sources online: "Over 7 million Yemeni children subject to 'serious' famine threat, warns UN," Nov. 1, 2018, PressTV; "Britain ‘complicit’ in Yemen famine, Tory ex-cabinet minister warns amid calls to end arm sales," Harry Cockburn, Nov. 1, 2018, Independent; "More Yemeni children die as medicine prices skyrocket," Bernard Smith, Oct. 28, 2018, Al Jazeera; "Two days after U.S. call for cease-fire, Saudi-led coalition launches new attacks in Yemen," Sudarsan Raghavan, Nov. 2, 2018, The Washington Post; "Defense contractors stand with White House on Saudi arms sales," Aaron Gregg and Christian Davenport, Oct. 25, 2018, The Washington Post; "Trudeau won’t stop $12bn of arms sales to Saudi after Khashoggi’s death because money always wins over murder," Robert Fisk, Nov. 2, 2018, Independent; "Justin Trudeau says he is unlikely to cancel Saudi armored vehicles sale," Reuters, Oct. 23, 2018, The Guardian.
Washington D.C.: NATO has chosen to hold its next meeting of members in Washington D.C. on the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King's assassination. The NATO summit meeting opens April 4, 2019. Current informed assessments concerning the murder of Dr. King reveal a conspiracy involving the Memphis police department, its city hospital, military intelligence and death squad units, and J. Edgar Hoover's FBI (see previous). NATO's choice is unfortunate in that this primarily military organization's usefulness is the defense of an often Nordic, consistently Caucasian, white power group within global politics, while Dr. King's power base was initially among southern Black people, the poor, those who believed in civil rights, voting rights, and human rights for people of all races, and non-violence. In response, a U.S. resistance organization UNAC (The United National Antiwar Coalition) has called for a national mobilization to this March 30th to honor the great American champion of peace, in Washington.
November 2, 2018
A note on Night's Lantern: focused on the prevention of genocide, nightslantern.ca was first posted in 2001 and has now grown to several thousand pages, including many of my essays and a few essays by other writers. Work not by me is specifically attributed and published with the author's permission (Permission for the UN's Convention on Genocide was first obtained in 1989 for our print publication of the Convention when it fell out of print at the UN). The years of "suppressed news" pages and political prisoner pages often rely for information on multiple news sources which I've made some effort to credit for verification of facts and to counter "fake news". The work of doing all this rises from what both my partner Julie Maas and I have considered necessity, finding through our publication of the UN Texts with our kitchen table press in Maine and then the Gulf War and destruction of Iraq, a risk of genocide to any country where the damage would benefit U.S. and international corporate interests. Increasingly the protections against this were being removed. I remember in 1990 sending complementary copies of UN Texts: The Crime of Genocide & Bill of Human Rights to most members of the U.S. Congress, at a time when the issue of genocide was a non-issue to the media, despite U.S. ratification of the Convention treaty in 1988. Our small press usually published my writings and Julie Maas's artwork. With exception the publication of UN Texts was badly received and in 1995 we continued publishing by moving to Canada. The internet was taking hold; a friend taught me to write .html code. These years of following genocide related news and trying to counter tragedies and the horror done individuals and entire groups, without compromising what I and we consider objective truth is an almost hopeless task, without payment, without overt effect other than the puzzling back and forth of web traffic statistics and "visits" from many countries. The only thing which has kept us going is where we started, our own artforms, which sustain us, and which is why drawings appear irregularly and my poems, simply as alleviation from reporting and realizations of what is too painful to understand or humanity would have been able to stop the extremes of suffering. I include here one of my poems, which may help explain this endeavor:bearing news to the future
we reached a clearing in the forestin my sense of self i return there
where bedrock pocketed with grasses
claimed a space of prose
un-englanded un-christianed outside gardens
of literature borders nations
the sunny facts of dandelions unadorned with rhyme
haphazard spores a song of lost notes
attended by birch and maple
for communion with the spring of landwaters
bearing all that ever came before and will be
if meant for me to understand:
and once a journeyplace became apportioned
is why your first love married someone else
and why the land you're born to
isn't yours and why there's poverty
inequity beyond reason or control
suffering survived through madness
at the pain of loss - our mirror, truth
shattered to shard sparked slivers
through the inner eye
so we call truth a fire that burns in us
rather than our refuge our home
when land that was ours-John Bart Gerald. Poems from a River City. Ottawa: Gerald and Maas, 2000
which means all the peoples'
became owned by conquest
all became prisoners of a code
honouring power before god
coining humanity for profit when
you know the ethic wrong that lets
one live in ease another in continuing pain
these words like gnats aimless black flies
with a point
and how will you shut your ears and eyes to
the river murmurings the dance of the mountains
the breath in the roar of waterfalls
the freedom of birdsongs constancy
of crickets counselling
be true to eachother
October 23, 2018
New York City: PEN America, a U.S. chapter of P.E.N., the international organization of writers and people in the publishing business, has opened proceedings against President Trump on the grounds that he has suppressed and is suppressing freedom of expression and violating the constitutional rights of Americans. P.E.N. International began in England in 1921. The American Center was founded in 1922 in New York. There are now internationally about 148 P.E.N. chapters. What was once PEN American Center (NYC) has joined with the Los Angeles PEN chapter to provide us with what may be an overreaching title of "PEN America". PEN's primary purpose is by its charter, to protect literature and art particularly, against censorship while encouraging the freedom to write and free flow of ideas across international borders. By the 1970's it was appreciated by the U.S. State Department for championing repressed Soviet writers and PEN gained considerable affect within the U.S.'s literary, academic and publishing world. It also provided a gathering place for U.S. writers who stood against illegal and immoral government practices of their own country - Arthur Miller, Rose Styron, Grace Paley, Allen Ginsberg, among many others. After a period of resistance to U.S. policies such as Vietnam PEN American Center began drifting toward government policy and was cut in early to the "war on terror" with its campaign of support for the poorly used Salman Rushdie whose work provoked a predictably censorious reaction among Islamic fundamentalists. After some years of overtly furthering State Department policies it is a pleasure to see PEN maintaining its founding purposes with the suit against President Trump. PEN America v Trump was initiated Oct. 16, 2018 in the Southern District Court of New York. It alleges the U.S. President "has violated the First Amendment and his oath to uphold the Constitution, has threatened journalists, initiated "unconstitutional actions aimed at suppressing speech," attempted to market journalists as "the enemy of the American people," threatened to retaliate against critics, threatened to act and acting (with a postage increase) against Jeff Bezos as owner of The Washington Post, threatened to act and acting against CNN because of its news coverage - by having the Justice Department challenge the merger of CNN's owner company Time Warner with AT&T, threatened to punish individual instances of critical reporting as well as to withdraw TV licensing in retaliation, threatened retaliatory actions for the writings of any critics, caused duress in requiring writers to write under threat, infringed "freedom of speech and freedom of the press," and has chilled and intimidated the right to give and receive free speech. These points are explored within the text of the suit which is available at https://pen.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/PEN-America-v-Trump-Complaint.pdf. While supporting this serious defense of freedom of speech, I keep in mind that the Trump administration continues to arm the Saudis as they hasten the deaths of 13 million Yemeni civilians, and ignores what Canadian Parliament understands as a genocide against the Rohingya peoples of Myanmar, and has participated in the displacement of 6.2 million Syrians, and continues to fund what may eventually be judged as a genocide of Gazans by Israel. The freedom to say so is surely something we must fight for, but PEN America's case benignly avoids naming the horrifying crimes American media's and judicial silences have wrought, the ignorance engendered, and the perception management silence has allowed, and the number of lives lost to global crimes - which is staggering. It is a very proper and modestly stated suit, if not understated.Partial sources online: "PEN America v. Trump: a letter," Jennifer Egan, Suzanne Nossel, Oct. 16, 2018, PEN America; "Trump praises Montana congressman who body-slammed reporter," Zeke Miller and Ashley th9omas (AP), Oct. 19, 2018, CTV News; "Britain, France, Germany join Canada in saying Saudi version of Khashoggi’s death not ‘credible’ ," Reuters/AP, Oct. 21, 2018, Reuters; PEN American Center v. Donald J. Trump, Case 1:18-cv-09433 Document 1 Filed 10/16/18 [access:<https://pen.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/PEN-America-v-Trump-Complaint.pdf >].
Canada El Salvador South Carolina
October 22, 2018
Canada: the Government of Canada and the Government of Quebec both shifted their support away from Michaëlle Jean in her bid for a second term as Secretary General of la Francophonie, to Rwanda's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Louise Mushikiwabo. The position of Secretary General is usually arrived at by consensus rather than vote. Canada's lack of loyalty to its own former Governor General is traced to the country's politicking for a seat on the UN Security Council. And Quebec's recent elections brought in a Provincial government described as anti-immigrant. One of the results of Paul Kagame's conquest of Rwanda by armed invasion was the changing of the national language from French to English so France's early support for Louise Mushikiwabo was surprising, though France is contrary to much that Haiti favours (such as reparations for colonialism etc.). Michaëlle Jean's birthplace, Haiti remained loyal to her candidacy. Her renovations of Canadian government-assigned lodgings in Paris were held against her by any who found it convenient, and who should have asked why the Canadian government assigned her such poor lodgings in need of extensive renovation. Michaëlle Jean who's term as Secretary General began in 2014, was acknowledged as a militant defender of women's rights and by her first name when Prime Minister Trudeau addressed the Francophone assembly October 11. On October 12, Michaëlle Jean lost her bid for a second term. Some may remember the honesty of her comments last January, faulting the American president for "an insult before humanity" - to quote her on the CBC: "it was so disturbing this morning to hear President Trump's comments reported all over the news calling my poor native land and African countries 'shithole' nations."Partial sources online: "Michaëlle Jean continues bid for Francophonie post without support from Quebec, Canada," Melanie Marquis (The Canadian Press), Oct.10, 2018, Global News; "Michaelle Jean loses top spot at La Francophonie," The Canadian Press, Oct.12, 2018, Global News; "Prime Minister Justin Trudeau praises Michaëlle Jean at Francophonie summit," Oct. 11, 2018, Global News; "Michaëlle Jean under fire over expenses as she heads into Francophonie election," May 29, 2018, CBC Radio; "Ex-governor general Michaëlle Jean calls reported Trump comments 'troubling, offensive'," Jan. 12, 2018, CBC News.
South Carolina: the construction of the MOX nuclear processing plant has been stopped by the Trump administration. The Mixed Oxide project has been underway since 2005 at the Savannah River Site, intending to convert bomb grade plutonium into nuclear power while assuring the further radioactive contamination of South Carolina and Georgia. The State's political machinery brought an injunction against the Department of Energy's attempt to close the operation but the injunction was recently overturned by the Federal Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. The MOX project was being built by CB&I Areva MOX Services, a consortium (Areva is now called Orano and is owned by France). The DOE found the plant would cost another $48 billion beyond the $7..6 billion already spent (Reuters) and prefers to 'dilute and dispose' the 34 tons of plutonium, burying it in New Mexico. The original cost estimate of the project was 4.8 billion to be completed by 2016. The State's Attorney General's office has pointed out that the "dilute and diffuse" technology is unsure and risks exposing the population to radiation.... Canada, Japan, as well as Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Italy, Sweden, have used the site as a nuclear waste receptacle. There are few other signs that the problem of nuclear materials containment in the face of climate change and Carolina flooding, is being addressed. Background - "Nuclear Notes: the Savannah River Watershed," by J.B.Gerald. Partial sources online: "Trump administration kills contract for plutonium-to-fuel plant," Timothy Gardner, Oct. 12, 2018, Reuters; "South Carolina Attorney General contends DOE can’t close MOX without analysis," James Folker, Aug. 15, 2018, The Augusta Chronicle; "South Carolina Republicans prepare last-ditch effort to save a federal nuclear project," Andrew Brown, May 22, 2018, The Post and Courier.
October 9, 2018 Peru Turkey Germany Canada Mexico
Peru: Supreme Court Judge Hugo Nunez has nullified the pardon of convicted war criminal and former president, Alberto Fujimori, and ordered his capture and return to prison. Shortly after, Fujimori was rushed to the hospital while his lawyer appeals the decision. The former Peruvian president was serving 25 years for death squad related war crimes; he was also convicted of corruption. He has so far escaped charges of genocide in the sterilization without informed consent of possibly 300,000 Indigenous women. Previous.
Peru: Supreme Court Judge Hugo Nunez has nullified the pardon of convicted war criminal and former president, Alberto Fujimori, and ordered his capture and return to prison. Shortly after, Fujimori was rushed to the hospital while his lawyer appeals the decision. The former Peruvian president was serving 25 years for death squad related war crimes; he was also convicted of corruption. He has so far escaped charges of genocide in the sterilization without informed consent of possibly 300,000 Indigenous women. Previous.Partial sources online: "Peru annuls ex-leader Fujimori's pardon and orders his capture," Oct. 3, 2018, Reuters; "Peru: Judge Reverses Pardon for Ex-Dictator Alberto Fujimori," Oct. 4, 2018, Democracy Now!.
Turkey: on October 2nd the court of appeals refused to overturn the conviction and life sentences of Ahmet Altan, Mehmet Altan, Nazli Ilicak, and other journalists convicted for assisting those who attempted the military coup d'etat of 2016. Altogether 221 accused of links to Fethullah Gulen, a U.S. supported Turkish religious leader living in Pennsylvania, were convicted. Over 300 were killed during the failed attempt against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Previous. Partial sources online: "Turkish court confirms life sentences for prominent journalists," Austin Koltonowski, Oct. 3, 2018, Jurist; "Turkey court upholds life sentences for prominent journalists," Oct. 2, 2018, Al Jazeera; "Five more journalists jailed in Turkey bringing total imprisoned by Erdogan regime to more than 150," Arun Kakar, Jan. 17, 2018, PressGazette.
Germany: a recent report of alleged sexual abuse of 3677 minors by German Catholic clerics between the years of 1946 and 2014, was released Sept.25th. Criminal charges were pressed against about a third of the accused. See previous. Partial sources online: “Sexual abuse of minors by catholic priests, deacons and male members of orders in the domain of the German Bishops’ Conference,” rough translation Neil Mussett, Secretariat of the German Bishops’ Conference, Sept. 24, 2018, Research Project (MHG Study); "Germany Bishops Conference study finds reports of sexual abuse against 1,670 clerics," Erik Slobe, Sept. 26, 2018, Jurist.
Canada: a second food bank has opened in the city of Iqaluit, allowing weekly access to food for low income families. The Arctic Food Bank, a project of the Islamic Society of Nunavut is open alternating Saturdays with the Niqinik Nuatsivik Nunavut Food Bank. Speaking for the Islamic Society its V.P. Mumammad Wani is quoted by the CBC: ""We are committed to serving all of those in need, irrespective of religion, nationality, caste or creed," said Wani. "I truly believe the love for humanity surpasses the demographic, religious and cultural barriers." Last June the Muslim community of Iqaluit was able to distribute 75 bags of groceries from its mosque in celebration of Ramadan. Nunavut's people cope with a history of starvation, food shortages and food overpricing. Currently a head of lettuce costs $6.99. Background. Partial sources online: "Islamic Society of Nunavut opens food bank in Iqaluit," Oct. 2, 2018, CBC News; "Iqaluit Muslim community hosts food bank to mark Ramadan," June 5, 2017, CBC News; "The High Cost Of Food In Nunavut Should Shock All Canadians," Margaret Whitley, Oct. 6, 2018, HuffPost.
Mexico: Mexico's president-elect, Andrés Manuel López Obrador promised a rally commemorating the
October 4, 2018 Rwanda Canada
Rwanda: Victoire Ingabire has been released from prison by executive clemency. The former presidential contender who challenged Rwandan President Kagame was imprisoned for speaking about the genocide of Hutu as well as Tutsi in the Rwandan genocide of 1994. The genocide marked the final days of a four year civil war in Rwanda. Discussion of any genocide against the Hutu has been against Rwandan law. A US Attorney at International Law, Peter Erlinder, who tried to challenge that law and defend the rights of Ingabire was also imprisoned by Kagame and released only through medical clemency for illness caused by his imprisonment. It's worth noting the U.S. State Department made no public efforts to protect Erlinder's rights and freedom. In 2017 The African Court of Human and People’s Rights ruled that under Rwandan law Ingabire's civil rights were violated and she should be released. Another political prisoner released was Kizito Mihigo, a Catholic Tutsi singer and composer (for example "Usaba Yezu ntavunika iyo aganisha ku Rukundo n'Amahoro - Wedding song") whose post genocide songs of peace and reconciliation have mourned and honored Hutu victims as well as Tutsi. He was convicted of conspiring to overthrow Kagame's government - the BBC reports - "plotting to kill" the president. He was sentenced to ten years. Under a presidential prerogative of mercy, Kagame freed 2140 prisoners in all. Background. NATO media news of Rwanda is heavily censored and remains problematic. The American journalist Ann Garrison [recommended] who frequently writes on Rwanda was barred from covering a Rwanda government-sponsored event in San Francisco Sept. 27, 2016, where Kagame spoke. Partial sources online: "Two African Heroes Leave Prison in Rwanda," Ann Garrison, Sept. 20, 2018, Global Research; "How the journalist Ann Garrison was kicked out in Rwanda Day San Francisco," Peter Phillips (Project Censored Show) Nov.12, 2016, Great Lakes Post - YouTube.html [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-DBEGcWAano >]; "Rwanda Day San Francisco: Bay View journalists get the boot," Ann Garrison, Oct. 6, 2016, EDU Rwanda & Bayview; "Victoire Ingabire: Rwanda frees 2,000 people including opposition figure," Sept.15, 2018, BBC News; "Don’t be shocked if you go back to jail, Kagame tells Ingabire," Sept. 19, 2018, TheEastAfrican.
Canada: (update). The Senate has unanimously approved withdrawal of Aung San Suu Kyi's honorary Canadian citizenship, making the House's withdrawal of her citizenship September 27th, official. Her silence in the face of Myanmar's genocide of the Rohingya may present a violation of the Convention on Genocide (complicity) and has embarrassed the world's human rights community. The CBC notes that she is the first person ever to be stripped of honorary Canadian citizenship. See previous. Partial sources online: "Senate votes to strip Aung San Suu Kyi of honorary Canadian citizenship," Kathleen Harris, Oct. 3, 2018, CBC News; "Senate votes unanimously to strip Aung San Suu Kyi’s honorary Canadian citizenship," Bill Curry, Oct. 2, 2018, The Globe and Mail.
September 28, 2018
Canada: the Canadian House of Commons has unanimously rescinded the honorary citizenship it once bestowed on Aung San Suu Kyi. The motion remains to be approved by the Senate. The action follows the House's unanimous support of the UN Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar's conclusions declaring that Myanmar's military has inflicted genocide on the Rohingya people (see previous). Aung San Suu Kyi's silence during the atrocities, her lack of intervention, caused the U.S. Holocaust Museum to withdraw the Elie Weisel award she received in 2012 (previous). She retains the US Congressional Gold Medal (once awarded George Washington and the Pope among others) received in absentia when she was under house arrest in Myanmar, 2008, and received in person in 2012, from the U.S. Congress as she was bountifully praised for showing continuing resolve to stand against her country's military. Interestingly, her fêting by U.S. human rights organizations, academies and policy-makers coincided with the U.S. withdrawing personal sanctions against Myanmar's head of state, Thein Sein at a point when Myanmar's military was engaged in the early stages of murdering the Rohingya (see the Night's Lantern entry of August 27,2012, or Oct. 29, 2012). In an ongoing campaign against international law, this past Sept. 20th the US threatened the world community and judges of the International Criminal court by dissociating itself from the International Criminal Court, warning others against cooperation and denying the Court affect. In this context the bravery of Canada's House of Commons should be noted, for honoring the law, spirit and purpose of the Convention on Genocide. Canada deserves international support for these votes which reflect the values not of one political party but all, not for economic gain but for the values of humanity, and in this instance of a people with national difficulties in providing answers to the crimes of North America's history.
Canada: the Canadian House of Commons has unanimously rescinded the honorary citizenship it once bestowed on Aung San Suu Kyi. The motion remains to be approved by the Senate. The action follows the House's unanimous support of the UN Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar's conclusions declaring that Myanmar's military has inflicted genocide on the Rohingya people (see previous). Aung San Suu Kyi's silence during the atrocities, her lack of intervention, caused the U.S. Holocaust Museum to withdraw the Elie Weisel award she received in 2012 (previous). She retains the US Congressional Gold Medal (once awarded George Washington and the Pope among others) received in absentia when she was under house arrest in Myanmar, 2008, and received in person in 2012, from the U.S. Congress as she was bountifully praised for showing continuing resolve to stand against her country's military. Interestingly, her fêting by U.S. human rights organizations, academies and policy-makers coincided with the U.S. withdrawing personal sanctions against Myanmar's head of state, Thein Sein at a point when Myanmar's military was engaged in the early stages of murdering the Rohingya (see the Night's Lantern entry of August 27,2012, or Oct. 29, 2012). In an ongoing campaign against international law, this past Sept. 20th the US threatened the world community and judges of the International Criminal court by dissociating itself from the International Criminal Court, warning others against cooperation and denying the Court affect. In this context the bravery of Canada's House of Commons should be noted, for honoring the law, spirit and purpose of the Convention on Genocide. Canada deserves international support for these votes which reflect the values not of one political party but all, not for economic gain but for the values of humanity, and in this instance of a people with national difficulties in providing answers to the crimes of North America's history.Partial sources online: Burma / Myanmar, "Genocide Warnings & Updates," J.B.Gerald, ongoing, nightslantern.ca; "In unprecedented move, Commons passes motion to strip Suu Kyi’s honorary citizenship," Michelle Zilio, Bill Curry, Sept. 27, 2018, Globe and Mail; "MPs unanimously pass motion to revoke Aung San Suu Kyi's honorary citizenship," Sept. 27, 2018, CBC News.
September 24, 2018 Mexico Guatemala New York City José Guadalupe Posada
Mexico: this note in pursuit of justice is also in tribute to the Mexican poet Octavio Paz who honored the world's traditions of poetry by resigning from Mexico's diplomatic service in protest against his government's mass murder and alleged genocide of students at Mexico City's Three Cultures Square Tlatelolco massacre, October 2, 1968, by military and security forces. Diaz Ordaz was President, Luis Echeverria the Secretary of the Interior. Official history has suppressed and tried to ignore the massacre since evidence implicated the U.S. embassy and ambassador. An attempt to officially investigate the massacre was made in 1998 but proved unsuccessful. Luis Echeverria became a President of Mexico and was subsequently accused of other crimes against humanity. In 2004 an investigation charged Echeverria with genocide for a paramilitary attack on students in 1971, referred to as the "Corpus Christi massacre," but the judge refused to provide a warrant. In June 2005 the Supreme Court ruled that Echeverria could be prosecuted on charges of genocide for the 1971 student murders. Then in July 2005 the judge ruled that Echeverria's indictment on charges of genocide didn't apply to the 1971 massacre. The prosecutor layed further charges against Echeverria for the 1968 Tlateloco massacre in September 2005 but in July of 2005 Echeverria was released from charges on grounds that the statute of limitations had expired. However, Mexico is bound to the U.N. Convention on Genocide which doesn't allow a statute of limitations for genocide. The judiciary's inability to protect the rights of those who aren't in the military or police, furthers the impunity by government organizations. Echeverria was arrested again in November 2006. In March 2009 he was cleared of genocide charges rising from the Tlateloco massacre and granted "absolute freedom." Nevertheless a group called Committee 68 concerned with the Tlateloco masscre has recently appealed to the Supreme Court to reopen the cases against Echeverria.
José Guadalupe Posada
Guatemala: found guilty May 10, 2013 of genocide among other crimes against the Mayan Ixil people, Efraín Ríos Montt's conviction was quiickly nullified by the Guatemalan Constitutional Court; his death by heart attack April 1, 2018, allowed the former dictator to escape legal justice and without punishment or rejection by his country's military and bourgeois elites. By comparison in May 2011 four "kaibilles" soldiers and their commanding officer were sentenced to 6000 years in prison for terrible atrocities. Corporate greed and the impunity of Guatemala's privileged can be blamed for the country's ongoing genocide of native people. On September 21, 2018, Juana Ramirez Santiago, a Mayan Ixil midwife and known human rights defender, was murdered on the street as she took dinner to her husband at his work. 13 human rights defenders have been murdered in Guatemala in less than six months. The government of President Jimmy Morales has banned Iván Velázquez, (see previous), head of the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) who and which were largely responsible for the functioning of legal mechanisms which brought Ríos Montt to trial and whose anti-graft efforts ended the government of Otto Perez and implicated the brother and son of current President Morales in cases of corruption. While a court ruling requires the government allow Velázquez to enter the country again, the government argues his tenure as commissioner has expired. The U.N. is considering a replacement. Velázquez and the former head of Guatemala's Supreme Court (and former Attorney General), Thelma Aldana, have just been awarded the alternative Nobel prize (Sweden's 2018 Rights Livelihood Prize) for fighting the impunity of Guatemala's corruption and abuse of power. Partial sources online: "Guatemala: a brave judiciary," J. B. Gerald, March 19, 2013, nightslantern.ca; "Masks of Investment: a Trial in Guatemala," J. B. Gerald, April 5, 2012, nightslantern.ca; "Good vs. Evil in Guatemala," J.B.Gerald, April 21, 2012, nightslantern.ca; "Genocide Denial in Guatemala," J.B. Gerald, May 21, 2013, nightslantern.ca; "Updates: coping with oppression in Canada, Guatemala, Ethiopia," J. B. Gerald, Jan. 16, 2016, nightslantern.ca; "Guatemala: Indigenous Mayan Ixil Midwife and Activist Murdered," Sept. 22, 2018, Telesur; "Guatemalan Court Ruling Favors CICIG But Chief Remains Banned," Sept. 20, 1018, TeleSur; "U.N. to send deputy to Guatemala as anti-graft leader remains banned," Sophia Menchu, Michelle Nichols, Sept. 19, 2018, Reuters; "Guatemala anti-corruption duo wins Swedish rights prize," Sept. 24, 2018, France24.
New York City: the Center for Constitutional Rights has joined 25 human rights organizations to urge the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court to investigate crimes which have occurred in occupied Palestine. Among other signers of the letter of Sept 17th to "Dear Madame Prosecutor," Al-Haq, Adameer, Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center, Lawyers for Palestinian Human Rights, the International Federation for Human Rights, protest a history of unarmed Palestinians killed by Israeli forces, the ongoing destruction of Palestinian property, the destruction of communities and displacement of peoples. The letter points out that there are no remedies in local courts and the impunity of apparent oppression remains unchecked. The CCR's fidelity to international law is praiseworthy given the Trump administration's threats to penalize all those cooperating with the International Criminal Court. Previous. Partial sources online: "The ICC must end impunity and open an investigation into crimes committed in occupied Palestine," Sept. 24, 2018, Center for Constitutional Rights email; " End Impunity and Open Investigation on Palestine," Sept. 17, 2018, alhaq.org [access:< http://alhaq.org/advocacy/targets/international-criminal-court-icc/1299--qq-/ >].
September 21, 2018
Burma (Myanmar): on September 20, 2018 Canada's House of Commons unanimously passed a resolution condemning the government of Myanmar for genocide of the Rohingya and other minorities, recommending the case be turned over to the International Criminal Court. The move follows the release of the detailed report for the UN Human Rights Council by the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar. The advance report released August 27th urged the military leadership of the country be investigated and charged with genocide, and other war crimes and crimes against humanity, and these primarily against the Rohingya but against other minorities as well; six military leaders were named in the report and the complicity of state counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was suggested while non-state armed groups said to include ethnic military groups were implicated in violations as well. The detailed report was released September 18th, reaffirming the conclusions of the advanced report. While the Rohingya remain the primary focus as victims of the government, the Fact-Finding Mission's concern with violations of humanitarian law in conflicts within the Kachin and Shan states, some of long duration between the government military and "the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), the Shan State Army – South (SSA-S), the Shan State Army – North (SSA-N), the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), the Arakan Army (AA), and the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA)," show the extent of a military ethic which has exceeded human norms. In the Rakhine state, the Rohingya's self defense force, Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), has evolved from villagers with "sticks and knives" to moderate organization among remaining villagers, but without funds for weapons, yet still able to mount anti-military attacks in October 2016 and August 2017 which were met with inappropriate degrees of violence. Atrocities and violations of humanitarian law intentionally against civilian villagers seems standard m.o. for the military ( called Tatmadaw) in the states of Kachin, Shan as well as Rakhine, and page after page of brutal examples show practices of a military system with no restraint or code of humanity. The detailed report is 444 pages long, and methodically also presents evidence of political, social and systemic acts and policies by the government which would lead to the destruction of a people. Night's Lantern's first of many genocide warnings for Myanmar appeared in 2012. Since August of 2017 over 750,000 Rohingya have fled Burma to Bangladesh. Bangladesh is a member of the International Criminal Court which is starting to investigate the forced deportation from Myanmar of Rohingya. While managing to avoid a direct challenge to Burmese state counselor Aung San Suu Kyi whom he met with in Burma September 20th, the Foreign Secretary of the U.K., Jeremy Hunt, has suggested Myanmar's treatment of the Rohingya be turned over to the International Criminal Court if the Burmese government continues to refuse to address its crimes domestically. Press TV quotes him as saying ""We need to be absolutely clear that there can be no hiding place for anyone responsible for these kinds of atrocities." Previous.
Burma (Myanmar): on September 20, 2018 Canada's House of Commons unanimously passed a resolution condemning the government of Myanmar for genocide of the Rohingya and other minorities, recommending the case be turned over to the International Criminal Court. The move follows the release of the detailed report for the UN Human Rights Council by the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar. The advance report released August 27th urged the military leadership of the country be investigated and charged with genocide, and other war crimes and crimes against humanity, and these primarily against the Rohingya but against other minorities as well; six military leaders were named in the report and the complicity of state counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was suggested while non-state armed groups said to include ethnic military groups were implicated in violations as well. The detailed report was released September 18th, reaffirming the conclusions of the advanced report. While the Rohingya remain the primary focus as victims of the government, the Fact-Finding Mission's concern with violations of humanitarian law in conflicts within the Kachin and Shan states, some of long duration between the government military and "the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), the Shan State Army – South (SSA-S), the Shan State Army – North (SSA-N), the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), the Arakan Army (AA), and the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA)," show the extent of a military ethic which has exceeded human norms. In the Rakhine state, the Rohingya's self defense force, Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), has evolved from villagers with "sticks and knives" to moderate organization among remaining villagers, but without funds for weapons, yet still able to mount anti-military attacks in October 2016 and August 2017 which were met with inappropriate degrees of violence. Atrocities and violations of humanitarian law intentionally against civilian villagers seems standard m.o. for the military ( called Tatmadaw) in the states of Kachin, Shan as well as Rakhine, and page after page of brutal examples show practices of a military system with no restraint or code of humanity. The detailed report is 444 pages long, and methodically also presents evidence of political, social and systemic acts and policies by the government which would lead to the destruction of a people. Night's Lantern's first of many genocide warnings for Myanmar appeared in 2012. Since August of 2017 over 750,000 Rohingya have fled Burma to Bangladesh. Bangladesh is a member of the International Criminal Court which is starting to investigate the forced deportation from Myanmar of Rohingya. While managing to avoid a direct challenge to Burmese state counselor Aung San Suu Kyi whom he met with in Burma September 20th, the Foreign Secretary of the U.K., Jeremy Hunt, has suggested Myanmar's treatment of the Rohingya be turned over to the International Criminal Court if the Burmese government continues to refuse to address its crimes domestically. Press TV quotes him as saying ""We need to be absolutely clear that there can be no hiding place for anyone responsible for these kinds of atrocities." Previous.Partial sources online: "Report of the lndependent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar (A/HRC/39/64) (Advance Unedited Version) [EN/MY]," UN Human Rights Council, Aug. 27, 2018, reliefweb; "Report of the detailed findings of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar (A/HRC/39/CRP.2)," UN Human Rights Council, Sept. 18, 2018, reliefweb; "Report of the detailed findings of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar," A/HRC/39/CRP.2, Sept. 17, 2018, Human rights Council Thirty-ninth session; "War crimes prosecutor begins examining alleged Rohingya deportations," Toby Sterling, Sept. 18, 2018, Reuters; "MPs unanimously declare Myanmar crackdown on Rohingya a 'genocide'," Kathleen Harris, Sept. 20, 2018, CBC News; "Myanmar may need to be referred to ICC: British foreign minister," Sept. 20, 2018, Press TV; "60 Churches Bombed or Burned: Kachin Christians Facing Genocide in Burma," Gary Lane, July 10, 2018 cbnnews.com; "Rohingya say Myanmar targeted the educated in genocide," Foster King, June 5, 2018, The Independent.
U.S.A: The New York Times reports as many as 12,800 migrant children held in detention an increase of over 10,000 since May 2017. The number is much higher than previously made public with the media focusing on children remaining in detention who were taken from their parents earlier this year. While some have been reunited with their parents by court order, at the start of September 2018, 487 of the recently separated children remain in custody. New regulations proposed by the Trump administration would allow families to be incarcerated together and the children to be held in custody for years while their immigration cases are adjudicated. As applicants for asylum and as minors, the children have broken no law. The Department of Homeland Security explains the huge number as due to a reduction in the number of children permitted to live with relative or sponsors, and an increase in those entering the US. While The New York Times reports that facilities such as the Tornillo Texas tent city cost the government $750 per child per day, it doesn't reveal the names of the profiting organizations or of those contracted to build or rent new facilities. The Toronto Star reports that the government of El Salvador alleges three of the children were sexually abused under US authority in Arizona shelters and requests their return. A report by the American Civil Liberties Union and International Human Rights Clinic, University of Chicago Law School, of May 22, 2018 reveals data from 30,000 pages of documents retrieved through the Freedom of Information Act from US Customs and Border Protection. These show the system's extensive ongoing violence against and abuse of unaccompanied migrant children entering the US [access:< https://www.aclusandiego.org/civil-rights-civil-liberties/ >]. N.B. this should affect Canada's current considerations of whether the US is a "safe third country" for immigrants, or not. The status is further jeopardized by recent US policy intentions to discount the International Criminal Court (see previous). Partial sources online:
"Trump Administration Proposes New Rules to Detain Migrant Children Indefinitely," Jennifer Epstein, Sept. 6, 2018, "Bloomberg; "US Holding Nearly 13,000 Migrant Children in Detention Centers," Sept. 13, 2018, TeleSur; "Detention of Migrant Children Has Skyrocketed to Highest Levels Ever," Caitlin Dickerson, Sept. 12, 2018, The New York Times; "El Salvador government says three migrant children were sexually abused at U.S. shelters," Julie Watson (AP) Marcos Aleman, Aug. 31, 2018, The Toronto Star; "ACLU Obtains Documents Showing Widespread Abuse of Child Immigrants in U.S. Custody," May 22, 2018, ACLU.
The Vatican: a Pennsylvania Grand Jury report released August 14th has found that Church documents at six Pennsylvania Catholic dioceses reveal at least 300 "predator priests" and over a thousand children victims of their sexual abuse. The report reveals some of the Church efforts to cover and conceal these crimes and implicates the Archbishop of Washington D.C. in the concealment of the crimes during his tenure as the Bishop of Pittsburgh. On August 16th The Vatican called the evidence of sexual abuse "criminal and morally reprehensible." On September 13th the Bishop of West Virginia was forced to resign due to allegations of sexual abuse. With allegations of sexual abuse by the Church and particularly of children in many countries (ie. Argentina, Germany, Chile, Ireland, the US) Pope Francis has convened a summit of bishops for February 2019 to find ways to protect children. Some have asked Pope Francis to resign. The rift in the Church is made worse by Pope Francis's duality where he appears to be a saint for the poor yet carries the stigma of complicity with the fascist Videla regime during Argentina's 'dirty war' (see previous). The criminal military regime was supported by both the Vatican and the US. Within North American institutions child abuse remains largely hidden and not limited to the Roman Catholic Church. Kevin Annett whose early work on revealing the crimes of Canada's Residential Schools for Indigenous peoples run by the Roman Catholic, Anglican and United Churches, gives ample evidence of institutional child abuse to the point of genocide (an example) yet remains ignored by the establishment media. Evidence of child abuse by the powerful particularly in the realm of mind control research and experiment is usually suppressed as "conspiracy theory." Annett's later work attempting to charge church and lay governing institutions with historical crimes including those of child abuse is suppressed by the media and discouraged by the public's reluctance to acknowledge the corruption of favoured institutions.
The Vatican: a Pennsylvania Grand Jury report released August 14th has found that Church documents at six Pennsylvania Catholic dioceses reveal at least 300 "predator priests" and over a thousand children victims of their sexual abuse. The report reveals some of the Church efforts to cover and conceal these crimes and implicates the Archbishop of Washington D.C. in the concealment of the crimes during his tenure as the Bishop of Pittsburgh. On August 16th The Vatican called the evidence of sexual abuse "criminal and morally reprehensible." On September 13th the Bishop of West Virginia was forced to resign due to allegations of sexual abuse. With allegations of sexual abuse by the Church and particularly of children in many countries (ie. Argentina, Germany, Chile, Ireland, the US) Pope Francis has convened a summit of bishops for February 2019 to find ways to protect children. Some have asked Pope Francis to resign. The rift in the Church is made worse by Pope Francis's duality where he appears to be a saint for the poor yet carries the stigma of complicity with the fascist Videla regime during Argentina's 'dirty war' (see previous). The criminal military regime was supported by both the Vatican and the US. Within North American institutions child abuse remains largely hidden and not limited to the Roman Catholic Church. Kevin Annett whose early work on revealing the crimes of Canada's Residential Schools for Indigenous peoples run by the Roman Catholic, Anglican and United Churches, gives ample evidence of institutional child abuse to the point of genocide (an example) yet remains ignored by the establishment media. Evidence of child abuse by the powerful particularly in the realm of mind control research and experiment is usually suppressed as "conspiracy theory." Annett's later work attempting to charge church and lay governing institutions with historical crimes including those of child abuse is suppressed by the media and discouraged by the public's reluctance to acknowledge the corruption of favoured institutions.Partial sources online: "Kevin Annett on Residential School Genocide, Canada's Royal Family, and the Vatican" [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJGdO7zHE0c >]. "Why is the Pope still silent about damning sex abuse report?," Daniel Burke, August 16, 2018, CNN; "Vatican condemns sex abuse by Pennsylvania clergy," Aug. 16, 2018, CBC News; "Fall of a West Virginia Bishop Widens the Catholic Crisis Over Sex Abuse," Laurie Goodstein, Sept. 13, 2018, The New York Times; "Who is Pope Francis? Jorge Mario Bergoglio and Argentina’s 'Dirty War'," Prof. Michel Chossudovsky, March 14, 2013, Global Research.
September 12, 2018
United States: "The Trump Administration's Wish to Let the ICC Die," by J.B. Gerald, graphic by J. Maas
August 17, 2018
July 25, 2018
United States: initially eligible for parole in 1998 but denied parole ten times, Robert Seth Hayes was finally granted parole July 24, 2018, after 45 years in prison. Like his WWII veteran father he was a veteran, and wounded in Vietnam. During military service he was also called on for the control of uprisings after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.. He became a member of the Black Panther Party and Black Liberation Army. Members of both groups were victims of the FBI's COINTELPRO program. Convicted of killing a Transit policeman (he pleaded not guilty) and other crimes in 1973, he was sentenced to 25 years to life. The father of two children and now a grandfather he was a model prisoner. The length of his sentence ten years past eligibility for parole is understood as punishment for his political beliefs. During this long incarceration he was denied adequate treatment (1 2 3) for type 2 diabetes, hepatitis C and other illness and had to turn to prisoner support groups to pressure authorities into addressing his medical conditions. In the struggle for liberation of the oppressed so many remain in prison from the 60's, 70's, 80's, from lifetimes ago, as though prisons can hide the tragedy brought on by racial injustice. Free all political prisoners. Partial sources online: "Black Panther Robert Seth Hayes Released After 45 Years," Aug. 9, 2018, Telesur; "Political prisoner of war, Robert Seth Hayes, paroled after 45 years," AUTODIDACT 17, August 9, 2018, Amsterdam News.
South Africa: update. There is some evidence that the murders of white farmers are decreasing (Chutel, Quartz). Whites continue to own a high percentage of South Africa's farmland. Julius Malema, head of the Economic Freedom Fighters has warned of an unled revolution due to massive poverty in the Black population despite independence. Both Malema and current South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa (a man of great wealth) are committed to the expropriation of farmland without compensation. Nightslantern has noted four previous genocide warnings for Afrikaners. Two documentaries with insight into the increasing economic and racial tensions of South Africa: "Farmlands (2018) Official Documentary"
The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea): the U.S. threat of annihilation first noted as a genocide warning in 2017, has eased. A short film by Andre Vltchek offers some insight into the peoples' lives: "The Faces of North Korea"
Iran: under an ongoing threat of destruction, noted on these pages as a genocide warning in 2007, a moment of the Iranian poet Shamlou's poetry: "Ahmad Shamlou ; 'The Final Word' (Trailer) Molsem Mansouri 2009"
July 25, 2018
July 20, 2018
Israel / Palestine: On July 19, 2018 Israel's Parliament passed a Nation State law, a "basic law" which has the force of a constitutional amendment, officially declaring Israel the national home of Jewish people. In this instance, "Israel" refers to all of historical Palestine. In a country of under 9 million people about 6 and a half million are Jews, nearly 2 million Arabs and less than half a million Christians. Under the new law Arabic is no longer an official language. Only Jews have the right to national self-determination. The state plans to support Jews and Jewish culture in the Diaspora. Jewish-only settlement is encouraged. Jerusalem is claimed as Israel's capital. These are among other points enhancing the assumptions of the right-wing government's cultural perspective and world view. This basic law neglects minority rights and understands Israel's Arab and Christian peoples as second class citizens. The Zionist government is officially making Israel a Jewish rather than a democratic state. It is also firming ties with Europe's right-wing governments. This comes at a time when Israeli Defense Forces have shown a disregard for human life at Israel's border with Gaza *, the rights of civilians are violated, and the population of Gaza is being intentionally made to suffer to the point of eventual destruction *. This law presents a genocide warning for non-Jews living under the authority of Israel. Is a country declaring itself the homeland of only one racial, ethnic, or religious group, exclusively, furthering a genocide against a minority group with valid historical claims to the same land? Is the law's intention the destruction of Palestine and Palestinians as a national group? Partial sources online: "Israel Approves Jewish Nation-State Law in Narrow Vote: Bill aims to give Jewish status priority over democracy," Jason Ditz, July 18, 2018, antiwar.com; "Israeli Law Declares the Country the ‘Nation-State of the Jewish People’," David M. Halbfinger and Isabel Kershner, July 19, 2018, The New York Times; "An unlikely union: Israel and the European far right," Ramzy Baroud & Romana Rubeo, July 17, 2018, Al Jazeera; "New Law Declares Israel a Jewish Nation-State with Hebrew as Sole National Language," July 19, 2019, Democracy Now!; "Demographics of Israel," current, Wikipedia; "Israel Approves Nationality 'Apartheid' Law," July 19, 2018, Telesur
July 14, 2018
USA: (previous 1 2 3 4). There remains a lack of information on where thousands of unidentified migrant children are being held in detention, and the conditions of their imprisonment.download .pdf 8.5" x 11" leaflet
July 12, 2018
9/11 Truth Film Festival-Part 6-William Pepper, No Lies Radio on Vimeo;[access:< https://vimeo.com/233568273 >].
This is a current, valid, truth-laden consideration of the assassinations of the 1960s which stripped America of its capacity to build a just democracy. How deeply history was misdirected was gradually understood in the fifty years after. The tragedy was also how easily the shift took hold, how cooperative people were through ignorance, how quickly the courage of the leaders was taken from their hearts. The assassinations weren't issues I could avoid since my then father-in-law was a tutor to the Kennedys at Harvard, and for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as a people's march marshal on the Selma to Montgomery march I served as a body shield when we walked into Montgomery. I was also at the time a medic in the USAF reserves. Years later William Pepper noted evidence that Dr. King escaped being shot by a U.S. Army hit squad during that march by stepping out of the site line of fire. Pepper's address is embedded amid these notes and essays on the prevention of genocide because, defending the Convention early, I realized that the U.S. principle moral voices with the power to resist genocide, were gone. The use of napalm and agent-orange against the Vietnam infrastructure put the Vietnam Conflict into the category of a genocide by its intentional destruction of the country's infrastructure and food production. The attendant covert destruction of Cambodia's food supply by U.S. bombing was directly responsible for the genocide in Cambodia. The Kennedys and Martin Luther King Jr. were murdered because of their empowered objections to pursuing the war. After the assassinations the controlling military ethic found no impediment to the most unacceptable crimes against humanity, including the obliteration of Iraq. With the deaths of the Kennedys and King there was no longer a moral/political bastion of resistance to genocide which would became a conscious tactic of U.S. policy. Increasingly any resistance to genocide abroad or within the U.S. has to come from the people.
July 7, 2018
Iraq, historical note: "Fallujah - the Hidden Massacre". This Italian documentary provides evidence of use of a napalm-like chemical weapon, MK-77, in the U.S. bombardment of Iraq, as well as use of white phosphorous as a weapon against civilians in Fallujah. The photographs may help explain why use of these chemical weapons is a crime and those responsible should be held to account. Legal actions against U.S. and U.K leadership for multiple crimes in Iraq have been avoided through the sheer power of the perpetrators. A case against the genocide of Iraq, crimes against humanity and war crimes, was attempted in Spain, October 9, 2009 (see Narration of Facts by the Ad Hoc Committee for Justice for Iraq). In 2010 the case was rejected by the court. So was the appeal. The charges remain relevant. Possibly to avoid litigation most major powers (except Russia and India) and most European countries (except Germany) have avoided signing or ratifying the United Nations Convention on the Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity, which came into force in 1970 and claims instances of war crimes and crimes against humanity are chargeable forever. A European Convention on the Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes (Jan. 25, 1974, Strasbourg) and laws and codes of some individual countries already insist on this, as does the U.S. Naval Code. More to the point the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court refuses statutory limitations (a cut off date for prosecution) on any of the crimes which fall under its jurisdiction (Article 29). Awaiting its day in the court of history the case remains applicable.Partial sources online: "Practice Relating to Rule 160. Statutes of Limitation," IHL Database, current, International Committee of the Red Cross; portion of "Fallujah, the Hidden Massacre," Sigfrido Ranucci & Maurizio Torrealta, Nov. 8, 2005, RAI Italia / Youtube [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yalyCk4kK-8 >] apprec. Aboriginal News Group .
N.B.: there's evidence white phosphorous as a weapon and sometimes sourced to the U.S., was also used by Ethiopian forces in Somalia, Kagame's forces in the invasion of Rwanda, Israeli forces in Gaza and Lebanon, U.S. forces in Afghanistan and Syria, Saudi Arabian forces in Yemen.
June 30, 2018
Italy: right-wing party leader and Minister of the Interior, Matteo Salvini, has let the press know he's planning a census of the Roma so that he can expel those without proper documentation. Roma have been noticeably under attack in Italy since Silvio Berlusconi's programs in 2008, providing fascist politicians a means of gaining votes. However, ethnic cleansing through a racial census reminds some Italians of Mussolini and Hitler. Minister Salvini's suggestions drew a frightened response from Jewish groups throughout Europe. The European Grassroots Anti-racist Movement (EGAM) which holds a Roma Pride march every October in Europe has called for a European-wide Roma Pride march this October in Italy and asks all Italians to proclaim - "Siamo tutti Roma !" Italy has recently refused to allow landing of a shipload of 600 African migrants at sea (fortunately Spain took them in). The usually right wing programs of persecuting Roma peoples are linked to the campaigns against refugees, immigration and migrants in NATO countries, as if there is a coherent plan to disenfranchise vulnerable peoples. VOA quotes Salvini as saying last week, "Irregular foreigners will be deported via agreements with other countries, but Italian Roma unfortunately you have to keep at home." Supporting a police raid on the River Village Roma camp outside Rome last April, Casa Pound, which has grown into a fascist political party (exploiting the American poet Ezra Pound's moments of insanity) called for the camp to be shut down as so many others have already been. Salvini's neo-fascist Lega party has called for Roma children who weren't in school to be taken away from their families (VOA). There's an indication here of an international fascist platform, if not an agreement of like minds (see previous). Since 2008 Night's Lantern has carried eight genocide warnings for Roma in Italy, and if this seems extreme, read them.Partial sources online: "Specter of Mussolini evoked as Italy’s Salvini orders full census & expulsion of Roma ‘illegals’," June 18, 2018, TV-Novosti; "Siamo tutti Roma!" EGAM, June 29, 2018, EGAM; "European Jews Watch on in Fear as Italy Targets Roma People," JTA and Cnaan Liphshiz, June 24, 2018, Haaretz; "Accustomed to Police Raids, Italy's Gypsies Fear Vigilante Attacks," Jamie Dettmer, June 24, 2018, Voice of America.
June 27, 2018
Canada: on June 26th Lawyers Rights Watch Canada asked Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, to have Canada revoke the Canada-US "Safe Third Country Agreement." The agreement prevents refugees entering Canada from the U.S., from seeking asylum in Canada since refugees must ask the first 'safe' country they arrive in. The agreement also allows return of refugees to the States and then countries of origin, and makes application for asylum in Canada by U.S. citizens, nearly impossible. This letter clarifies violations of international law by U.S. policies and actions toward refugees and their children. It's available at Lawyers Rights Watch Canada, and here. See previous, 1 and 2. Partial sources online: "Canada: Systematic US Violation of International Human Rights of Refugee Children and Families | Letter," Catherine Morris, J.B.Gerald, June 27, 2018, Lawyers Rights Watch Canada [access:< http://www.lrwc.org/ws/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/LRWC.Canada-USA.26June2018.FINAL_.pdf >].
The U.S. Border with Mexico:
On June 26th, 17 of the United States, and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit at federal court, Seattle Washington, to make the Trump administration unite the children and parents separated in detention by U.S. authorities at the Mexican U.S. border. The states' argument is the overburdening resulting expenses to the states, in child welfare and social services.
Shortly after, in a case brought before U.S. District Court Judge Dana Sabraw in San Diego by the American Civil Liberties Union (Ms. L et al v U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement et al) for a Congolese seeking asylum from religious persecution and separated at entry for four months from her 6 year old daughter, Judge Sabraw ordered those separated be reunited with their parents within 30 days; he has also required children under five reunited within two weeks. The U.S. government is likely to appeal.
At federal court in Los Angeles, rights activists have asked that parents be released from detention to be reunited with their kids. The government hasn't revealed any plan to reunite these children forcibly transferred from their parents to the U.S. government.
Previously, court cases against Shenandoah Valley Juvenile Center near Staunton Virginia and the Shiloh Treatment Center in Manvel, Texas, have revealed evidence of abuse, torture and psychotropic drugging of the children placed in detention centres. Karen Greensberg in The Nation reports that the Justice Department has cut funding to legal aid and has begun to require "special certification" for any lawyers from NGOs seeking to represent detainees pro bono.
Bloomberg notes that in 2017 the U.S. Border Patrol arrested 70 thousand families and 48 thousand unaccompanied children crossing the border from Mexico. These figures are limited to people from Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, as countries of origin. An additional 3 and a half thousand families and 12 thousand unaccompanied children with Mexico as their country of origin were arrested crossing from Mexico. Where are these children?
Partial sources online: "U.S. states sue Trump administration over migrant family separations," Gene Johnson, Michael Balsamo, Will Weissert, AP, June 26, 2018, The Globe and Mail; "US Court Documents Reveal Immigrant Children Tied Down, Hooded, Beaten, Stripped and Drugged," Patrick Martin, June 22, 2018, World Socialist Web; "Trump’s Border: Gitmo for Kids," Karen J. Greensberg, June 27, 2018, The Nation; "U.S. judge orders migrant families to be reunited," Jonathan Stempel & Doina Chiacu (Reuters), June 27, 2018, The Globe and Mail; "Trump Urges New U.S. Border Policy: ‘You Can’t Come In’," Justin Sink & Margaret Talev, June 26, 2018, Bloomberg.
June 21, 2018
Canada: "'Safe Third Country' eh," by J.B.Gerald, graphic by J. Maas.
June 19, 2018The U.S. border with Mexico Philadelphia
The U.S. border with Mexico: "When Governments Take Children Hostage," by J.B.Gerald, graphic by J. Maas.
Philadelphia: on June 16, political prisoner Debbie Sims Africa, one of the MOVE 9, was granted parole. Denied parole two years ago she was released after almost 40 years imprisonment on unproven charges. The Guardian reports that Janine Phillips Africa and Janet Holloway Africa, due for parole at the same time were denied but able to have another hearing in May 2019. Also remaining to be freed are Mike Davis Africa (with a parole board hearing in September), Eddie Goodman Africa, Chuck Sims Africa, Delbert Orr Africa. Two of the MOVE 9 have died in prison under unclear circumstances. The MOVE 9 became eligible for parole in 2008. They were sentenced to from 30 to 100 years for the death of a policeman under fire during massive attack by authorities to force them out of their dwelling. The police expended two thousand rounds of ammunition while evidence connecting any of the MOVE 9 to a firearm is lacking. Surviving the police attack Debbie Sims Africa close to term with her son had her nearly 2 year old daughter taken from her. She wasn't allowed to raise her children. 5 of the MOVE group's children were killed with 6 of the adult members in the 2008 Philadelphia police fire bombing of their dwelling. See previous. Mumia Abu-Jamal's radio coverage and witnessing as a journalist of police crimes against MOVE was followed by the police charging him with the murder of a policeman which placed him on death row.Partial sources online: "MOVE member Debbie Africa released," Betsey Piette, June 17, 2018, Mundo Obrero / Workers World; "'This is huge': black liberationist speaks out after her 40 years in prison," Ed Pilkington, June 18, 2018, The Guardian.
June 16, 2018Bolivia Yemen
Bolivia: on April 3rd, condemned by a jury for the murders of protestors by police under his regime, former President of Bolivia, Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada and his Defense Minister, Carlos Sanchez Berzain, were to pay $10 million dollars compensation to the families of their victims. However on appeal, Florida Judge James Cohn, ruled May 30th that there just wasn't enough evidence.... He dismissed the jury's verdict. Berzain and de Lozada have been living in the U.S. as refugees since the October 2003 massacre when police opened fire on protestors objecting to the export of natural gas, killing 67, wounding about 400. Former President de Lozada went to a Quaker school in Iowa, then the University of Chicago; in Bolivia he was occasionally referred to as "El gringo."Partial sources online: "US Judge Revokes Sentence Condemning Bolivian Genocide," May 31, 2018, Telesur; "Bolivia ex-leader 'not responsible' for protest deaths," May 31, 2018, BBC News; "U.S. jury finds ex-Bolivia leader responsible for civilian deaths," Danny Ramos, April 3, 2018, Reuters.
Yemen: on the verge of what the media concede is a humanitarian crisis, about seven million of the Houthi Shiite population in Yemen face starvation as U.S. backed Saudi/UAE forces cut the food supply line and take over the port town of Hodeidah. The Saudis have been bombing and destroying Yemen's infrastructure since at least 2015. Starved by military tactics, war and famine, the Houthi face a terminal food shortage headlined in Modern Diplomacy as "America's genocide". Missing from current media reports on Yemen is news of the ongoing cholera epidemic, the largest in history, and related to the destruction of the country's infrastructure. According to the World Health Organization, between April 2017 and May 2018 Yemen endured 1,100,720 cases of cholera with 2,291 associated deaths. Yemen authorities, WHO and UNICEF, have administered an oral cholera vaccination program (a dose lasts 6 months, 2 last 3 years) from May 6th to 15th, but WHO says millions remain at risk. Reporting in Yemen, Gary Brecher makes a strong case that the famine was/is artificially (ie. intentionally) induced by the Saudi and allied military blockade of food as well as medical supplies. Blockading medical relief for prevention and treatment of cholera in areas of high poverty seems the current weapon of choice against the poor, not only in Yemen but in Haiti. In Zimbabwe an overwhelming cholera epidemic in 2008-2009 was claimed by its Minister of the Interior to be the result of biological warfare. Cholera is fairly easily controlled but lethal when there is a lack of fast medical response, as in areas of war, natural disasters and contaminated water. So there is a kind of impunity in the U.S. backed Saudi coalition's intention to deny a starving civilian population in a war zone, food, clean water, and medical supplies. The Saudi alliance military actions are enforcing conditions which inevitably lead to mass death. The hugeness of the crime finds its way into random incidents. A new Médecins Sans Frontières cholera treatment facility clearly marked with the logos of MSF and the Red Crescent was bombed by U.S. supported Saudi/UAE forces on June 11, 2018. As a result of violence against them throughout the country the Red Cross has had to pull 71 of its workers. Records should be kept of the chains of command for military actions and the blockade of supplies necessary for the civilian population, and of arms supply to the region, with the aim of eventual prosecution. Genocide warning. Partial sources online: "America’s Genocide in Yemen Starts Tuesday," Eric Zuesse, June 12, 2018, moderndiplomacy; "The War Nerd: Anglo-American Media’s Complicity in Yemen’s Genocide," Gary Brecher w. The Exiled, June 11, 2018, naked capitalism; "Fighting the world’s largest cholera outbreak: oral cholera vaccination campaign begins in Yemen," 10 May 2018, World Health Organization; "Battle for Hodeidah: How the destruction of one Yemen port could send millions into famine," Bethan McKernan, May 29, 2018, Independent: "MSF Cholera Treatment Centre attacked in Abs Yemen," Médecins Sans Frontières, June 11, 2018, reliefweb; "WHO: Cholera ‘continues to threaten millions’ in Yemen," June 6, 2018, MEMO/Middle East Monitor; "Outbreak update – Cholera in Yemen, 31 May 2018," May 31, 2018, World Health Organization.
June 14, 2018
Cameroun: the Battle of Languages Serves Colonial Masters. There is increasing likelihood of a civil war in Cameroun. Captured from German interests during WWII by the Free French, the Camerouns were divided into British Cameroun to the North and French Cameroun to the South. At its Independence from France January 1, 1960, French Cameroun became the Republic of Cameroun or Cameroun as we know it. To the North, under plebiscite, the southern portion of what was called British Cameroun voted to join the French speaking Republic of Cameroun, and the northern (Muslim) portion of British Cameroun voted to join English speaking Nigeria. Currently.... (to continue).
June 11, 2018
Canada: (update). Erroneously reported by the British Columbia Ministry of the Environment as 100 litres, the Kinder Morgan pipeline spill at Darfield May 27th, two days before the pipeline's sale to the Canadian government, was revised June 10th to have been 4800 litres. Generally environmental assessments by all governments are unreliable when these present a danger to the population, but usually in the area of radiation statistics after Fukushima and other instances of widespread nuclear and radiation contamination. Statistics of radioactive contamination of food sources currently remain suppressed news. 30 years after Chernobyl, the radioactive cesium contamination of milk 125 miles distant (the Rivne region of the Ukraine) is found to be 5 times the Ukraine's adult safety limit and 12 times its safety limit for children.Partial sources online: "Kinder Morgan Pipeline Leak Two Days Before Trudeau Buyout Was 48 Times Larger Than First Reported," Jake Johnson, June 11, 2018, Common Dreams / EcoWatch; "Nathan Cullen accuses Canada of buying 'lemon' from Kinder Morgan after estimated size of oil spill multiplies by 48 times," National Observer, June 11, 2018, National Observer; "Indigenous resistance, title make Trans Mountain pipeline extension ‘untenable,’ says economist," Justin Brake, June 8, 2018, aptn; "Ukrainian cow milk has ‘five times safe level of radioactivity’, study finds", Tom Barnes, June 7, 2018, Independent; "Fukushima nuclear disaster: Lethal levels of radiation detected in leak seven years after plant meltdown in Japan," Jeff Farrell, Feb. 2, 1018, Independent.
May 31, 2018Canada Ukraine U.S.A.
Canada: under Justin Trudeau the Canadian government has purchased the Kinder Morgan pipeline shifting from the Texas Kinder Morgan company to the Canadian people the burden of the pipeline construction's difficulties. The Government has the option of reselling the pipeline. In the early hours of May 26 a pipeline pump station in Darfield B.C. began leaking about
100 gallons(see update) of medium crude blend and Kinder Morgan had to shut it down. And on May 26th anti-pipeline groups held a peaceful Montreal rally against the pipeline construction, and while a number of speakers addressed the familiar political issues, a native prayer gave thanks for all that we need, the trees, the air, the oceans, the wind, the sun, the, stars, animals, insects, birds fish, the earth under our feet. Because the pipeline threatens the environment and habitat of natives and non-natives regionally and beyond, this isn't exclusively an Indigenous issue. The Aboriginal peoples have more legal rights to protest with; non-Indigenous peoples against the project may find themselves facing an overwhelming need to preserve the environment, without legal support other than human rights law and the common sense of judges.
Ukraine: following the lead of Nazi programs to control the German people, advanced anti-Semitic incidents continue. So far their purpose seems to be to terrorize the Jewish and minority populations and build a conforming nationalist norm to wage war against Russia. This is useful to U.S. and NATO anti-Russian policy. The campaign to increase intense racist nationalism extends to persecution of the Roma and LGBTQ communities. On April 20-21 a small group (about 12) of far right fascists from "C-14" attacked and burned homes of Roma in the capital city Kiev. The elements of persecuting minorities include marches with Nazi salutes and swastikas, direct threats against Jews, graffiti praising Hitler, use of pejorative terms for Jewish people, vandalizing the tomb of a rabbi sacred to the community, public and political praise for Nazi collaborators, honoring a former SS battalion known for slaughtering Jews and Poles, honoring of Stepan Bandera, the fire bombing of a Holocaust memorial, and of a synagogue, the theft of religious articles, desecrating grave markers of Holocaust victims, lack of police protection against the displays of fascism and twisted rhetoric of overt anti-Semitism, etc. These are tactics which could be easily recognized as fascist by the Canadian government and unacceptable, yet Canada and the U.S. have staunchly supported Ukraine's anti-Russian government. The tactics become a source of anxiety for peoples who believe in democracy. While Israel has found the Government of the Ukraine slow to deal effectively with anti-Semitism, any information about Israel's support for the Ukraine's Jewish communities - is hard to find. While a genocide warning for the Jewish communities continues with its warning to other Ukrainian minority communities as well, it may clarify for Jewish communities of other nations just how much support Israel will provide in the event of fascist outbreaks and takeovers. Anti-Semitism in the Ukraine is considered on the increase as U.S. and Canadian military support grows. The U.S. House of Representatives voted a 250 million dollar military budget for the Ukraine May 24th, and last year the Ukraine received 200 million dollars in U.S. military aid. FRN and Russian news groups report that Canadian and U.S. troops (as NATO forces) have recently died in a minefield near Avdeevka.Partial sources online: "Violent Anti-Semitism Is Gripping Ukraine — And The Government Is Standing Idly By," Lev Golinkin, May 26, 2018, Forward; "Police Break Silence After Video Shows Far-Right Attack On Kyiv Roma," Christopher Miller, April 26, 2018, Radio Free Europe; "Far Right Hate Group Shuts Down LGBTQ Event in Ukraine Following Threats," Nico Lang, May 11, 2018, Into; "Is there anti-Semitism in Ukraine? Look at the facts," Viktor Ruzhynsky, May 16, 2018, 112UA; "NATO Troops Killed in Donbass, War Provocations Suspected," Eduard Popov, May 19, 2018. FRN; "U.S. Congress approves $250 mln in military aid to Ukraine," May 25, 2018, "UNIAN; "America’s Collusion With Neo-Nazis," Stephen F. Cohen, May 2, 2018, The Nation.
U.S.A.: The U.S. currently has a staggeringly cruel policy of separating children from their parents if the families are caught crossing the border illegally into the States. In the past children, who are alone when caught crossing the border, have been placed with caretakers or sponsors by the Department of Homeland Security. While individual States have mechanisms for vetting the custodial parents, the federal government's are less stringent and 1475 children were found missing by the end of 2017. This group pre-dates the current policy of separating families and refers only to children caught illegally entering the States on their own. But the worry is that children have fallen and will fall into the hands of sexual predators, the sex trade traffic, the body parts market, and slavery.Partial sources online: "The feds lost ' yes, lost ' 1,475 migrant children," EJ Montini, May 22, 2018, azcentral.; "1,475 Missing Immigrant Children," David Leonhardt, May 29, 2018, The New York Times.
May 20, 2018
stay calm decolonize no pasarán
1. Indigenous peoples have the right to determine and develop priorities and strategies for the development or use of their lands or territories and other resources.
2. States shall consult and cooperate in good faith with the indigenous peoples concerned through their own representative institutions in order to obtain their free and informed consent prior to the approval of any project affecting their lands or territories and other resources, particularly in connection with the development, utilization or exploitation of mineral, water or other resources.
- United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Canada was one of the four countries officially objecting to the Declaration when it was passed by the UN General Assembly Sept. 13, 2007. In 2010 the Harper government endorsed the Declaration, without making it legally binding. On May 10, 2016 Canada officially withdrew its objector status and made the Declaration legally binding in Canada. To quote Carolyn Bennett, Minister of what was then Indigenous and Northern Affairs, "We are now a full supporter of the declaration, without qualification... We intend nothing less than to adopt and implement the declaration in accordance with the Canadian Constitution." Section 35 of the Constitution assures indigenous title , rights, where consent is required. This was specifically reiterated by the Supreme Court of Canada decision in Tsilhqot’in Nation vs. B.C.. Projects such as the Kinder Morgan pipeline require Indigenous consent from the native peoples of the lands they affect. The company obtained approval for its pipeline from some of the Indigenous bands affected. Others have not approved at all and are protesting the violation of their rights. Prime Minister Trudeau's Liberal government is heavily committed to supporting the Kinder Morgan project despite location of the company's headquarters in Houston Texas. Grand Chief Serge Simon, head of the Treaty Alliance Against the Tar Sands Expansion, has let the government and company know of the seriousness of native resistance: "They refuse to acknowledge that it’s the First Nations out west that are prepared to be arrested... They’re prepared to go all-out to prevent this from being built." Partial sources online: "As Feds and Alberta talk, Indigenous rights left out of Trans Mountain debate," Lucy Scholey, April 12, 2018, aptn; "First Nations court challenges continue to hang over $7.4-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion," Gordon Hoekstra, April 19, 2018, Vancouver Sun; "Trudeau’s support of Kinder Morgan leading to a ‘flashpoint’ of Indigenous resistance," May 18, 2018, aptn; "Canada officially adopts UN declaration on rights of Indigenous Peoples," Tim Fontaine, May 10, 2016, CBC News; "Comment: There should be no confusion about aboriginal consent," Roshan Danesh, Oct. 23, 2016, Times Colonist.
May 19, 2018
Gaza: in response to actions on the boundary between Gaza and Israel (see previous 1 and 2) the U.N. Human Rights Council on May 18th passed a resolution to form an “independent, international commission of inquiry” into the killings of Palestinians. Its report is due in March 2019. With 29 of the 47 members affirming, the Council condemned "the disproportionate and indiscriminate use of force by the Israeli occupying forces against Palestinian civilians" (The Washington Post). Also according to The Washington Post the Israeli-Egyptian blockade is a response to the Hamas takeover of Gaza in 2007. Egypt's participation in the blockade may have been intended to control the movement of people with diverse politics. Nevertheless Egypt as well bears responsibility for the suffering of Gaza's people. The U.S. and Australia voted against the resolution. Britain and Germany were among the abstentions. On May 14th the U.S. vetoed a similar resolution before the U.N. Security Council. The General Assembly's views are evident in its vote last December against the U.S.'s declaration of Jerusalem as Israel's capital. On May 18 a summit of 57 Arab leaders convened by Turkey's President Erdogan as the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, suggested resolution through the offices of the U.N., which included an international peace force to protect the Palestinians.Partial sources online: "Israeli Settler Colonialism and Occupation Fact Sheet," Robert Barsocchini, May 18, 2018, Global Research; "U.N. sets up human rights probe into Gaza killings, to Israel's fury," Tom Miles, May 18, 2018, Reuters; "UN Jerusalem vote: General Assembly rules against US, declaring recognition of Israel capital 'null and void'," Mythili Sampathkumar, Dec.21, 2017, The Independent; "Gaza border protests resume as UN calls for inquiry," Ashraf Sweilam & Fares Akram (AP), May 18, 2018, The Washington Post; "Muslim leaders call for international protection force for Palestinians," Ali Kucukgocmen, Tulay Karadeniz, May 18, 2018, Reuters.
May 16, 2018
Gaza: the UN has known since 2012 that Gaza may be uninhabitable by 2020 (Report on UNCTAD assistance to the Palestinian people: Developments in the economy of the Occupied Palestinian Territory). Blockades have impeded the basic necessities of life, hospital supplies, materials necessary for reconstruction and replenishment after Israel's military campaigns. Water sources have been contaminated or denied. Electric power is often denied. In order to counter psychological and physical conditions destroying their people's ability to have any future at all, Palestinians are protesting at the border with Israel. Palestinians are being shot, wounded and killed in large numbers, on their own land and on their own side of the border, by Israel's snipers under illegal orders encouraging them to use force against the unarmed protesters. Since these protests at the border began on March 30th, 12,271 Palestinians have been wounded, 112 or more, killed. When the U.S. contrary to international law declared Jerusalem Israel's capital and relocated the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem May 14th, international law's power to restrain criminal acts was weakened. On May 14th amid the unarmed crowd of 40,000 protesters at the border 2771 were wounded, and 60 killed. Canada's government expressed sadness and deep concern. On May 16th Prime Minister Trudeau called for "an immediate independent investigation" in response to allegations of an inexcusable use of force. The shooting of Dr. Tarek Loubani, a Canadian in his surgical clothes, is not understandable. The member of Dr. Loubani's medical team who saved him was shot and killed in another rescue attempt shortly after. The U.S. takes Israel's position that "Israel has the right to defend itself." Britain's Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry MP has asked her House of Commons to "Stop this vicious slaughter." Arab and Islamic countries have condemned Israel's violent actions against unarmed people. Victims were not only shot while praying and kneeling, but included children and clearly marked medical personnel and members of the press. According to The Electronic Intifada, "An Israeli general [Brigadier-General (Reserve) Zvika Fogel] has confirmed that when snipers stationed along Israel’s boundary with Gaza shoot at children, they are doing so deliberately, under clear and specific orders." According to truthout Amnesty International has documented that hundreds of people "have been hit with hunting bullets that 'expand and mushroom inside the body...." Deliberate atrocities form an illegal policy which is continuing with impunity: another genocide warning for Gaza and Palestine. To not recognize that the Convention on Genocide is violated many times over becomes a convenience of sophistry. Article II, a., b., c. are violated. There are two genocide warnings here. Mercifully the second lacks evidence but holds with common sense. It's a genocide warning for the people of Israel. A difficulty with impunity is the helplessness of victim groups - particularly when they are denied justice, particularly when the actions of the guilty become too outrageous or inexcusable, there is finally a human response throughout many countries. Suppressed, denied, overpowered, still it grows stronger. By not listening to the international community the Government of Israel places Israelis at risk of retribution. Documentation of Israel's alleged violations of international law should be available from Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, B'Tselem, and others.Partial sources online: "The Massacre in Gaza: A Deliberate and Calculated Policy," Steven Chovanec, May 15, 2018, truthout; "Snipers ordered to shoot children, Israeli general confirms," Ali Abunimah, April 22, 2018, The Electronic Intifada; "What you need to know the Gaza border violence and the global backlash against Israel," Globe Staff, The Associated Press, and Reuters, May 14 & May 16, 2018, The Globe and Mail; "Israel: Gaza Killings Unlawful, Calculated, Officials Green-Light Shooting of Unarmed Demonstrators," April 3, 2018, Human Rights Watch; "Trudeau calling for independent probe of reported use of 'excessive force' in Gaza shootings," John Paul Tasker, May 16, 2018, CBC News; "UN General Assembly Votes for Palestinians," J. B. Gerald, Dec. 9, 2017, nightslantern.ca.
May 10, 2018
New York City, NY: On April 27th, 2018 Herman Bell went home to his friends and family. Eligible for parole after 25 years he served 45 years, as a model prisoner. His 8th application for parole was granted by the New York State Parole Board Feb. 18, 2018 but the announcement was followed with extreme attempts by the New York Police Department's Patrolmen's Benevolent Association to make sure Bell never left prison.... (continue reading "Why Are They Still in Prison?")
Philadelphia, PA: Historical note: survivors of the MOVE 9 are being kept in prison to silence the truth. Without proof 9 were convicted of shooting one policeman and each was sentenced to from 30 to 100 years. Police brutality caused the miscarriage of 2 children carried by MOVE women, the alleged murder of another child and other children who were killed in the police bombing of MOVE's residence. 7 MOVE members are up for parole this year and should be freed. Police crimes in this case need to be known and understood by all Americans and internationally, everyone concerned with justice. The documentary is narrated by Howard Zinn. See: Move! Part 1/6 [access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tbOPrV_NHAE&feature=share >].
April 18, 2018
April 9, 2018
The ultimate logic of racism is genocide." - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
St. Mary's, Georgia: on the evening of April 4th, the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a group of dedicated pacifists entered the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base without authorization. The Kings Bay Plowshares are Carmen Trotta, Clare Grady, Mark Colville, Elizabeth McAlister (former nun and founder of Jonah House, widow of the U.S. Peace movement hero and former priest Phil Berrigan), Martha Hennessy (granddaughter of Dorothy Day), Jesuit Fr. Stephen Kelly, and Patrick O'Neill. The base hosts Trident submarines armed with nuclear missiles and is part of a U.S. nuclear first strike program. The Kings Bay Plowshares carried with them baby bottles filled with their own blood, hammers, an indictment and banners. Among banners was a quote by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr - "The ultimate logic of racism is genocide." Another banner read "The ultimate logic of Trident is omnicide.” The indictment they carried charges the U.S. government, President Trump, the Kings Bay Base commander, the nuclear Triad and Trident nuclear program, with violating United Nations Treaty law and international law, with war crimes. They identify themselves as "white Catholics" but repenting the sin of white supremacy. The seven are currently at the county's Public Safety Complex after being charged with a misdemeanor - criminal trespass, and two felonies - "interference with government property," and the "possession of tools in the commission of a crime." They were denied bond. Their path is constant.
Background. Plowshares actions are part of a continuing Plowshares movement which started at the King of Prussia General Electric plant in Pennsylvania (a defense contractor for nuclear weapons) 1980, when eight activists poured their blood, spray painted, accomplished minor damage to government property. This briefly shut down the plant's production. The original eight were Phil Berrigan, Fr. Daniel Berrigan 1 and 2, Molly Rush, John Schuchardt, Dean Hammer, Fr. Karl Kabat, Elmer Maas, and Sr. Anne Montgomery (many of these are no longer with us). The judge refused the Nuremberg defense. The group rejected plea bargaining - and the Berrigans were sentence to from 3 to 10 years - the sentences varied and were subsequently found unjust. Elmer served 18 months. He was in several subsequent Plowshares actions and part of the Plowshares communities but as Julie's uncle and our friend he was also part of our family until his death in 2005.
Partial sources online: "Plowshares activists arrested for action at Georgia naval base," James Dearie, April 5, 2018, National Catholic Reporter; ''Seven Plowshares Activists Arrested Protesting at U.S. Nuclear Sub Base," April 5, 2018, Democracy Now!; "7 protesters detained at Naval Submarine Base in Kings Bay," First Coast News, April 5, 2018, WTLV-TV; "Bond denied for Kings Bay Plowshares activists," April 6, 2018, The Nuclear Resister; "Last night's Plowshares Action at Kings Bay Strategic Weapons Facility," April 5, 2018, Witness Against Torture email.
April 8, 2018
Israel: on March 30th, Gaza's Land Day, Israeli troops opened fire on Gaza protesters, wounding at least 1500 men women and children and killing 18 (those wounded by live fire numbered over 750 and have gradually added to initial death tolls). Over 30 thousand Gazans were protesting at Israel's border. The protesters were unarmed; the demonstration is reported to have been entirely peaceful. In his Easter address Pope Francis referred to the victims as "defenseless". Mondoweiss reports the massacre lost Israel the support of American Jews but speaks mainly of media personalities (among the people many North American Jews have never supported Israel's crimes). According to Gaza hospitals there was evidence that the victims' wounds were intentionally life-threatening or crippling. There is also evidence that the live fire attack on demonstrators was pre-planned. On March 31rst an additional 70 Palestinians among those at the border were shot and wounded by Israeli Defense Forces. On April 6th at least 10 more were killed at the border and a thousand more were wounded when IDF forces initiated shooting at the demonstrators. There is adequate evidence that Israel is trying to destroy the people of Gaza as a group (a previous example). Prof. Marjorie Cohn points out that under international law shooting unarmed civilians is a crime, there was no threat to the lives of Israeli forces, the principles of distinction and proportionality are violated, and she calls for International Criminal Court prosecution of the leaders responsible on charges of war crimes. B'Tselem asks Israeli soldiers to disobey orders which are against the law. Background.Partial sources online: "Gaza hospitals: 'Israel was shooting to kill or cause disability'," Maram Humaid, April 3, 2018, Al Jazeera; "Massacre in Gaza: Israeli Forces Open Fire on Palestinians, Killing 18, Wounding As Many As 1,700," April 2, 2018, Democracy Now!; "Israel just lost American Jews," Philip Weiss, April 5, 2018, Mondoweiss; "US blocks UN Security Council statement on Gaza violence," AFP, April 7, 2018, digitaljournal.com; "Pope Francis, In Easter Address, Says ‘Defenseless’ Being Killed In Holy Land," Philip Pullella,Reuters April 1, 2018, huffpost. "Israel wounds dozens on Gaza border as Palestinians bury dead from earlier violence," April 1, 2018, Reuters; "Israeli Forces Kill More Gaza Protesters at Friday Demonstrations," Jason Ditz, April 6, 2018, Anti-war.com; "In Wake of Gaza Massacre, Israeli Leaders Should be Prosecuted for War Crimes, " Prof. Marjorie Cohn, April 7, 2018, Global Research; "For the Second Week in a Row, U.S. Blocks UN Call for a Probe into Gaza," Daniel J. Roth, Herb Keinon, April 7, 2018, The Jerusalem Post.
April 5, 2018Guatemala India Myanmar Rojava Syria
Guatemala: in dying, Efrain Rios Monte evaded a second conviction on charges of genocide. The former dictator suffered a heart attack April 1, 2018. His lawyers say he maintained his innocence to the end. Under Rios Monte's authority thousands of Ixil Indigenous people were slaughtered by Guatemalan troops, and at points with U.S. advisors. Trained by the School of the Americas, praised by President Reagan, his evasion of justice within Guatemalan courts attempted a mockery of justice, international law and what it means to be human.Partial sources online: "Efraín Ríos Montt, Guatemalan Dictator Convicted of Genocide, Dies at 91," Stephen Kinzer, April1, 2018, The New York Times; "Ex-Guatemala dictator Rios Montt, plagued by genocide charges, dies," Sofia Menchu, April 1, 2018, Reuters.
ndia: Dalits are being killed across the country by members of the ultra nationalist Hindu parties, particularly the ruling BJP. 47,000 crimes against people of a "lower caste" or tribal people, were registered with India's police authorities in 2016 (CNN). In the past, higher caste Hindus have often considered the Dalits "impure" and have committed atrocities against them. After a recent Supreme Court ruling contravened immediate arrest of people discriminating against them, Dalits responded in ten states, calling for a national strike. They protest under a blue flag 'as the colour of the sky'. Protest by tens of thousands in three states included violence against police; 10 Dalits were killed. Protests were able to shut down the state of Punjab, home to the highest percent of "low caste" people. The Supreme Court has announced it will hear an appeal to the ruling. While the caste system has been outlawed in India, Dalits, Christians and Indigenous tribal peoples among other marginalised groups continue to be at risk. Partial sources online: "Seven reported killed as India's Dalits lead protests against court ruling," Suchitra Mohanty, Derek Francis, April 2. 2018, Reuters; "10 killed as widespread Indian caste protests turn violent," Huizhong Wu, April 3, 2018, CNN; "Why is blue the colour of Dalit resistance?" Ashwaq Masoodi, April 4, 2018, livemint.
yanmar: (see previous). In Canada Prime Minister Trudeau's Special Envoy for Myanmar, Bob Rae, has released his report on the Rohingya, and asks the government to act on his 17 recommendations immediately. The recommendations encourage humanitarian and developmental funding along with initiatives that would allow Rohingya the resumption of life in Myanmar but on acceptable standards of human rights. There is little controversial in the report, possibly to its credit. Its request that Myanmar give the UN access has been granted. The report does not compromise Canada's concern for international law and investigation of war crimes and alleged genocide, and it supports concurrent targeted economic sanctions. Rae suggests a "Rohingya Working Group" within the government and a partnership with similar groups in other groups. As a mechanism this may mean delays while the machinery of death implicit in refugee camps brought about by ethnic cleansings and genocides, continues to destroy the lives and cultures of the victim group. Rae's humble even-handedness may deflect engaging what tragedy and injustice means to the victims who manage to stay alive, yet Canada at least dares deal with the Rohingya as if United Nations Covenants, the Convention on Genocide and its treaties are real, as if the protections for all people which international law assures, should be honored. Partial sources online: "Amnesty International welcomes Special Envoy Bob Rae’s report on Myanmar, calls on Canada to implement recommendations without delay," April 3, 2018, Amnesty International; "'Tell them we’re human' What Canada and the world can do about the Rohingya crisis," Bob Rae, April 3, 2018, Government of Canada; "Rohingya Crisis: 17 recommendations for Canada," Bob Rae, April 4, 2018, opencanada.org; "Adviser to Bangladesh PM urges re-sanctioning of Myanmar over ‘genocide’," Shebab Sumon, April 4, 2018, Arab News.
ojava Syria: update of previous. While the presence of U.S.forces in for example Manbij, suggests that the U.S. may protect Kurdish forces from the possibility of overwhelming attack by invading Turkish forces, threats of U.S. withdrawal from all of Syria leave all the Kurdish forces used by the U.S. to fight ISIS vulnerable. This avenue of thought is avoided in the media. Despite a limited contribution of French forces the genocide warning continues Partial sources online: Ie. "U.S. military mission in Syria coming to a ‘rapid end’, White House says," Josh Lederman and Darlene Superville (AP), April 4, 2018, Global News.
March 31, 2018Mynamar Rojava Syria
Myanmar: the Berlin Conference on the Myanmar Genocide, February 26, 2018 (see previous) has adopted a "Rohingya Protected Return Call." Kyle Mathews of The Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies (MIGS) which co-convened the conference, advises that current return of the Rohingya refugees from Bangladesh where they live in the largest refugee camp on the planet, be delayed due to reports that military groups are waiting to attack them in Myanmar. MIGS which cooperates overtly with U.S. and Canadian government initiatives, should have access to reliable data. The Conference concluded that there's an intentional effort in Myanmar to destroy the Rohingya as a people. Genocide warning. While early warning signs for genocide were available as early as 2012 Canadian defenses against genocides have been very slow to work with the issue due to their reliance on academia which is increasingly oriented to corporate policies, reliance on government funding, and reliance on backroom political mechanisms for applicable legal support. Within Myanmar Win Myint, a close supporter of Aung San Suu Kyi was elected the new president March 28, 2018. Through what may be a shell game of presidencies Aung San Suu Kyi, retains her dominance in the specially created post of state counselor. The military as well retains an equal share of the national authority. Senior General Min Aung Hlaing recently declared that the Rohingya culture has nothing in common with Myanmar's other ethnicities, and the problems (tragedies) derive from the Rohingya demand for citizenship. Some Rohingya families have lived in Myanmar-Burma for centuries. The UN Secretary General has made a plea for leadership's unified effort to stem the incitement of hatred.Partial sources online: "'De plus en plus de signes de génocide', disent des experts," Agnès Gruda La Presse, Feb 27, 2018, Le magazine Urbania; "Opinion: Never again? With Rohingya crisis, we’re once again bystanders to horrific atrocities," Gerald Caplan, March 23,2018, globeandmail.com; "Myanmar parliament elects Suu Kyi loyalist as new president," Associated Press, March 28, 2018, The Washington Post; "U.N. chief 'shocked' by top Myanmar general's comments on Rohingya," Reuters Staff, March 27, 2018, Reuters; "Genocide Denial in Canada," J.B.Gerald, Oct. 26, 2016, nightslantern.ca.
Rojava Syria: previous. Update. Kurdish forces in Manbij may have retained U.S. military backing. Despite Turkish threats to attack, U.S. troops are reinforcing Coalition forces within the city: the U.K. and U.S. are maintaining forces there as are the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG). As promised the Kurds, French troops are on the way. Turkey considers the YPG a terrorist group.Partial sources online: "Threatens to Attack French Forces in Syria For Backing Kurds," Jason Ditz, March 30, 2018, anti-war.com; "US Steps Up Protection for Coalition Forces in Northern Syria’s Manbij," Zana Omar, March 30, 2018, VOA.
March 30, 2018Rojava Syria Vatican City
Rojava Syria: the Turkish invasion of northern Syria puts the area's Kurdish people at risk. The Rojava Montreal collective reports that with Afrin fallen to the Turkish military the situation of Kurdish civilians and their defenders is desperate. It claims the Turkish military is supported by ISIS and jihadist groups while U.S. support for the Kurds is no longer there [see update]. As the Turkish Army's objectives widen from Afrin to Manbij, Kobani, Qamisio, there is a fear of a genocide against the Kurds in the region. This has been a danger in the U.S. manipulation of Kurdish male and female fighting forces to engage ISIS, while they are also in a struggle for autonomous freedom in Turkey, Syria, Iraq, and Iran. In 2017 Israel endorsed an Iraqi Kurdish leader's referendum calling for an independent Kurdish State, a move which could increase the chances of genocidal retaliation against the Kurds by the many states whose lands they would be reclaiming. Turkey threatens to march into Shengal as well, where the Ezidi people (Yazidis) believe they are intended targets of a genocide by the Turks. In 2014 the Ezidis were slaughtered by ISIS forces in Shengel when the Kurdish PKK abandoned the city. As Kurdish forces prepare to leave again they say that this time the Ezidis have been organized and are able to defend themselves. When Turkey crossed the border it should have been met with immediate objection and actions by the UN Security Council. The Kurds and Ezidis are being denied their human right of protection under the Convention on Genocide. Both groups are currently under a genocide warning in both Iraq and Syria, and the Kurds in Turkey as well. ANF News reports that French President Emmanuel Macron has met with a Rojava delegation from the North of Syria and will commit French forces to the Manbij region in their defense.Partial sources online: "News from Rojava and updates from the collective," March 29, 2018, [rojavamontreal] Infolettre Rojava Montréal; "What does Shengal say about the withdrawal of PKK guerrillas?" March 30, 2018, ANF News; “France will send troops to Manbij against invasion attempts,” March 30, 2018, ANF News; "French President Emmanuel Macron offers to mediate in Turkey-Kurdish SDF talks," March 29, 2018, Deutche Welle; "ISIS as a mirror," J.B.Gerald, June 22, 2016, nightslantern.ca; "Israel endorses independent Kurdish state," Jeffrey Heller, Sept. 13, 2017, Reuters .
Vatican City: After washing the feet of prisoners at the Reginia Coeli prison Pope Francis made a clear declaration against the death penalty: "A punishment that is not open to hope is not Christian and not human ...That is why the death penalty is neither human nor Christian" (DW). See also The Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Aiming at the Abolition of the Death Penalty. Previously this month when Pope Francis had lunch with twenty inmates in the Basilica of San Petronio of Bologna, it was discovered that two of the guests, inmates from Castelfranco Emilia, had escaped.Partial sources online: "Pope Francis: 'Death penalty is neither human nor Christian'," March 29, 2019, Deutche Welle; "Prisoners walk out on lunch with Pope Francis," March 29, 2019, Deutche Welle.
March 28, 2018Peru Canada Quebec City Macedonia
Peru: on March 21, President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski offered his resignation to avoid impeachment. See previous. He is replaced by the former VP and Ambassador to Canada, Martín Alberto Vizcarra Cornejo. Alberto Fujimori's daughter and supporters are blamed for a campaign to undermine Kuczynski's image of integrity with the release of videos capturing bribery and corrupt government practices. Voters had preferred the American-wedded Kuczynski to Keiko Fujimori at the polls by a slight margin. The Fujimoris are associated with unprosecuted genocide charges against the elder Fujimori, war criminal and former president, who was recently freed from prison by Kuczynski in an attempt to save his own presidency. During the elder Fujimori's presidency 300,000 indigenous women are thought to have been sterilized without their informed consent. Fujimori, supported by the U.S. was also attributed with overcoming Sendero Luminoso ("Shining Path") an Indigenous-inclusive maoist organization which had assumed the government of large parts of Peru. Background & genocide warnings.Partial sources online: "Peru’s president offers resignation ahead of impeachment vote," Franklin Briceno, Joshua Goodman, AP, March 21, 2018, The Globe and Mail; "Ex-Peruvian president barred from leaving the country amid corruption investigation," The Associated Press, March 24, 2018, The Toronto Star; "A note on Peru," J.B.Gerald, May 16, 2009, nightslantern.ca.
Canada: the New Democratic Party's leader, Jagmeet Singh, has indicated he believes the 1984 massacres of Sikhs in India should be condemned as a genocide by Canada's government. After Indhira Gandhi was assassinated by two of her Sikh bodyguards, between three thousand and ten thousand Sikh's were slaughtered. Jagmeet Singh and many others believe the massacres were a result of a state program rather than the wish of the community. If the Indian government provoked the massacres the term "genocide" is correctly used. The 1984 massacres have already been recognized as a genocide by the Ontario legislature. The hope is that national recognition might help heal Hindu and Sikh relations by furthering accountability of those responsible in India. For this millennium in India, Night's Lantern has noted genocide warnings for the poor, Dalits and Christians.Partial sources online: "NDP leader Jagmeet Singh says Canada should declare 1984 anti-Sikh violence genocide," Mia Rabson, Canadian Press, March 16, 2018, canoe.com; "Jagmeet Singh: I will never ignore the pain that lingers in the Sikh community," Jagmeet Singh, March 15, 2018, The Globe and Mail.
Quebec City: as his trial begins Alexandre Bissonnette is accused of 6 counts of first degree murder and 6 counts of attempted murder at Quebec City's mosque in October 2017. He is pleading not-guilty. [Updated posting March 28: the CBC reports Alexandre Bissonnette has changed his plea to guilty this morning in court, declaring remorse for the suffering he has caused the victims' families. According to the CBC Bissonnette stated his intention to change his plea last Monday but a publication ban on the Court's proceedings that day prevented release of the news until a psychiatric evaluation was performed which it was Monday evening.] The crimes and allegations have received broad media coverage. No other suspects have been accused. The charges don't reach into the area of terrorism. The conduct of the trial will be under international scrutiny due to the threat this crime presented the Muslim community throughout Quebec. Previous 1 2 3 4.Partial sources online: "Alexandre Bissonnette, accused in Quebec City mosque shooting, pleads not guilty," Melinda Dalton, March 26, 2018, CBC News. "Quebec mosque shooting suspect Alexandre Bissonnette pleads not guilty," The Canadian Press, March 26, 2018, CTV News; "Quebec City mosque shooter Alexandre Bissonnette says he's ashamed of his 'senseless act'," Melinda Dalton, Julia Page, Catou MacKinnon, March 28, 2018, CBC News.
Macedonia: Andalou Agency News reports that NGOs in Macedonia have claimed humanitarian crimes and war crimes including genocide by Greece against their people who comprise a minority in Greece persecuted since 1913. The Macedonian NGOs find that the talks with Greece to agree on the name of their country - Greece calls it the "Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" since Greece has a province named "Macedonia", have degenerated into an attempt to commit a "genocide" against the Macedonian people, to culturally and physically expunge the Macedonian people. Aside from Greece they blame the European Union, NATO and the UN for the injustices incurred during the talks since 1993. The NGOs claim that the EU and NATO are requiring Macedonia barter its name, ethnicity, identity, history and language, in order to belong to these organizations. Compared to the extremes of contemporary genocides evident in Yemen and Myanmar among other countries, cultural genocide may seem an academic problem. A quarter of the country's population is Albanian. The President of Macedonia recently refused to sign a bill allowing Albanian to be the second official language, after Slavic. Yet without their culture the people fail.Partial sources online: "Greece accused of 'genocide' of Macedonian people," Bayram Altug, March 7, 2018, Andalou Agency News; "US official urges resolution of Macedonia name dispute," AP, March 13, 2018, The Washington Post; "Macedonia Faces New Crisis Over Minority Language Law," March 14, 2018, USNews.
March 22, 2018
U.S.A.: Ruchell Cinque Magee: (see previous): writing in BayView Magee lets us know his parole application will be heard by the state under a federal mandate requiring release of prisoners over 60 that have served over 25 years. He's 79 this month held more than 54 years in a California state prison. He has committed no act of violence and his initial sentence in 1963 of 7 years to life was in his words "a conviction for kidnap to rob for $10." In 1975 he was sentenced to seven years to life, concurrently, for "kidnap to run", after attempting to escape at the Marin County courthouse in 1970 when Jonathan Jackson (at 17) stormed the courthouse. Jackson, two prisoners and a judge were killed by guards. Magee, critically wounded, survived. Magee writes he was sentenced under Penal Code 1168 which allowed only a 17 year maximum sentence. The system hasn't dealt honestly or justly with him and he should be released with compensation; no correction of the system can give him back his years. They are using cruel and gross injustice against prisoners as a tactic to frighten Americans into cooperation. Those responsible for no earlier parole should be investigated, if not by a U.S. ombudsman then under international law.Partial sources online: "Ruchell Magee, longest held political prisoner in the world, heads to parole hearing," March 2, 2018, Ruchell Cinque Magee, BayView; Ruchell Cinque Magee, sole survivor of the Aug. 7, 1970, Courthouse Slave Rebellion," Kiilu Nyasha, Feb. 2, 2017, BayView; "Ruchell "Cinque" Magee," Nov. 16, 2017, Prison Solidarity.
“Slavery 400 years ago, slavery today. It’s the same but with a new name.” – Ruchell Cinque Magee (apprec. Kiilu Nyasha)
March 21, 2018
New York City: ATTEMPTED TAKEOVER OF COURT AND PAROLE BOARD DECISIONS
Herman Bell of the New York Three was finally granted parole at his eighth parole hearing with his release date set for late April. Bell is 70. The State Parole Board immediately came under fire from New York's Patrolman's Benevolent Association, the widow of one of the slain patrolmen and part of the other officer's family. Both Mayor Bill de Blasio and State Senator Patrick Gallivan heading the state's Senate Crime Victims, Crime and Corrections Committee, publicly stated their opposition to the Parole Board decision, undermining the rights and expectations of all prisoners, and the institution of parole. The sentence given Bell by the judge was not a life sentence but 25 years to life which intentionally includes the possibility of parole. Police and politicians don't have the legal right to take over the judge's decision, or the Parole Board's. Our pages haven't followed the "New York 3" among many other prisoners whose lives and fate were formed by the FBI and NYPD's administration of COINTELPRO policies. These were evident in the makeshift trial of the San Francisco Eight. But in New York this extreme public reaction of the police union, the PBA president Pat Lynch's harangue fit for a mob ("This animal..." is how he referred to Bell), the misstatements of fact, politicians' risking the democratic process for police approval, all warn of fascism. They also revile Bell, a model prisoner, whom they've made a target when he is released. Understanding that police anger remains tangled in the tragedies of two who died in the line of duty (many Black Americans have also died but simply walking down the street), it should be remembered that allegations of killing police was a crime of preference for prosecuting Black community leaders (and white radicals) under the COINTELPRO program, and often in circumstances where testimony of prosecution witnesses later came into question. Partial sources online: "Nobel Peace Prize Laureates Issue International Call for Justice for the SF8," Feb. 10, 2008, 4strugglemag; "Don't let Parole Become a Meaningless Concept," Editorial Board, March 18, 2018, The New York Times; "Free Herman Bell," Feb.21, 2016, Makheru Bradley.
March 15, 2018Honduras Israel
Honduras: with strong evidence of voting fraud supported by the U.S., the January 27th installation as president of Juan Orlando Hernandez relied on police and military security forces which countered mass demonstrations across the country with the murder of 16 citizens and an unreported number of 'preventive' arrests. Reuters notes that in early December alone there were mass arrests of 1351 people. Previous. Since the U.S. supported ouster of democratically elected Manuel Zelaya corporate interests have continued to advance through police state tactics and murder. The alleged mastermind of the plot to murder activist Berta Cáceras two years ago was arrested as he tried to leave Honduras early in March. David Castillo Mejía, a former military intelligence officer (four of the nine suspects arrested so far for this killing have military ties) is the CEO of the dam building company Cáceras, an indigenous leader, and the community were protesting. The dam was proceeding without community approval. She was shot at her home around midnight, March 2nd or 3rd, 2016. The U.S. which is generally responsible for protecting corporate interests in Honduras from a citizens' democracy has publicly approved the arrest although the U.S. has provided the Honduran police and military an estimated 200 million dollars of aid since 2010. An investigation by The Guardian discovered Berta Cáceras listed on a military hitlist delivered to U.S. trained elite forces. Honduras is known as the most lethal country in the world for environmental activists. With police state tactics at home, Honduras with Paraguay and Guatemala has indicated its willingness to move its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, in accord with the U.S. decision to move its embassy (Russia as well will move its embassy to West Jerusalem, believing that East Jerusalem should be the capital of Palestine). Previous.Partial sources online: "U.N. blames Honduras security forces for killing electoral protesters," Reuters Staff, March 12, 2018, Reuters; "Honduras, Paraguay "ready in principle" to move embassies to Jerusalem," JTA, March 12, 2018, The Jerusalem Post; "Berta Cáceres murder: ex-Honduran military intelligence officer arrested," Nina Lakhani, Mar 2, 2018, The Guardian; "Berta Cáceres's name was on Honduran military hitlist, says former soldier," Nina Lakhani, Jun 21, 2016, The Guardian.
Israel: a new law approved by Israel's parliament allows the Minister of the Interior to take away any Palestinian's rights to live in Jerusalem if considered disloyal or having committed what the Minister considers a criminal act or error in residency application. The threat includes Palestinians born there and whose families have lived and worked there for generations. Al-Jazeera points out that the current Interior Minister, Aryeh Den has in the past been "convicted of bribery, fraud and 'breach of trust'"; Den claims that the intent of the new law is the 'security of Israeli citizens'. The same reason of 'necessity for the security of Israeli citizens' - was given to explain the recent action of the Israeli army as it entered Burin village to claim the town secondary school with its land, firing tear gas into the school grounds and terrorizing the students. The town is bordered by three illegal settlements for Jewish Israelis only. There is little evidence within Israel of overt Jewish resistance to military policies. There is resistance by Orthodox Jews who continue to protest forced conscription into Israel's military on religious and cultural grounds. The nonviolent protests have been met with police brutality and arrests. The law exempting ultra-Orthodox Jews from military service in order to maintain the culture through immersion in their religious studies was nullified by Israel's Supreme Court in mid-September 2017.Partial sources online: "Israel passes law to strip residency of Jerusalem's Palestinians," March 7, 2018, Al Jazeera; "Israeli troops enter Burin to 'confiscate' more land," Anadolu news agency, March 12, 2018, Al Jazeera; "Would-be converts must marry or leave partners, Knesset committee told. The practice has been called 'coercive and unfair'," Jeremy Sharon, March 12, 2018, The Jerusalem Post; "9 arrested after Orthodox Jews clash with police in Jerusalem over military draft (VIDEOS)," Sept. 18, 2017, TV-Novosti; "‘We’d rather die than enlist’: Ultra-Orthodox Jews clash with police over military draft (VIDEOS)," March 13, 2018, TV-Novosti.
March 14, 2018Myanmar El Salvador
Myanmar. Reuters reports that United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, has presented yet another genocide warning March 7th to the U.N. Human Rights Council; he fears acts of genocide against the Rohingya have occurred in the Rakhine province since last August. In her report to the U.N. Human Rights Council March 12th, Yanghee Lee, special rapporteur on Myanmar, has claimed the strong likelihood of genocide of the Rohingya and has urged accountability. The Myanmar military continues to reject U.N. claims. The U.S. and U.N. position currently is that the Rohingya are victims of ethnic cleansing. Adama Dieng, the UN's Special Advisor on the Prevention of Genocide ending his visit to Bangladesh faults the international community for doing nothing to stop atrocity crimes against the Rohingya. The Anadolu Agency reports 750,000 Rohingya refugees fleeing to Bangladesh since August 25, 2017. Dieng has noted evidence of genocide and because of ongoing violence against Rohingya in Myanmar is not recommending return of refugees at this point. Amnesty International has released information that the military is currently bulldozing the Rohingya towns it has emptied through massacres or the people's flight, and is constructing military facilities throughout the Rakhine. Ongoing genocide warning. Previous"Despite the numerous warnings I have made of the risk of atrocity crimes, the international community has buried its head in the sand. This has cost the Rohingya population of Myanmar their lives, their dignity and their homes." - Adama DiengPartial sources online: "Note to Correspondents: Statement by Adama Dieng, United Nations Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, on his visit to Bangladesh to assess the situation of Rohingya refugees from Myanmar," Adama Dieng, March 12, 2018, United Nations Secretary-General; "Yanghee Lee: Incidents in Rakhine bear hallmarks of genocide," UNB, March 13, 2018, Dhaka Tribune; "Rohingyas could face further violence if they return to Myanmar, UN adviser warns," March 13, 2018, UN News; "UN official convinced of Myanmar Rohingya 'genocide'," Bard Wilkinson, March 12, 2018, CNN; "Myanmar: Remaking Rakhine State," ASA 16/8018/2018, March 12, 2018, Amnesty International; "Myanmar: Military land grab as security forces build bases on torched Rohingya villages," March 12, 2018, Amnesty International; "Global community 'buries head in sand' over Rohingya," Fatih Erel, March 13, 2018, Anadolu Agency; "Rohingyas could face further violence if they return to Myanmar, UN adviser warns," March 13, 2018, UN News; "'Acts of genocide' suspected against Rohingya in Myanmar: U.N." Stephanie Nebehay, Simon Lewis, March 7, 2018, Reuters.
El Salvador: it was announced on March 7th that Pope Francis had approved Archbishop Oscar Romero for sainthood. In 2015 Romero was declared a "blessed" of the Church. The qualification for sainthood requiring of martyrs only one miracle was met when Cecilia Maribel Flores, near death, recovered in answer to a prayer to the "blessed" Romero by her husband. Archbishop Oscar Romero known for attempting to defend El Salvador's poor against the country's U.S. supported military and death squads - begged and ordered soldiers to stop killing civilians. He was murdered March 24, 1980 as he celebrated mass. In 1992 a UN truth commission found the assassination order was given by Major Roberto D'Aubuisson Arrieta, a graduate of the U.S. School of the Americas, a member of Salvadoran military intelligence, a leader of the right wing death squads, and eventually a presidential candidate. With the military's immunity currently revoked El Salvador's judiciary has reopened the case. Partial sources online: "Slain Salvadoran Archbishop Romero to Be Made a Saint," Reuters, March 7, 2018, The New York Times; "Pope Francis approves sainthood for Oscar Romero," Staff Reporter, March 7, 2018, Catholic Herald; "He championed the poor and was killed by a death squad in El Salvador. Decades later, Archbishop Oscar Romero will be made a saint," Kate Linthicum, Esmeralda Bermudez, Tom Kington, Tracy Wilkinson, March 7, 2018, L.A. Times.
March 10, 2018
Myanmar: on March 7th the U.S. Holocaust Center took back its Elie Weisel prize awarded Aung San Suu Kyi April 18, 2012. A Nobel Laureate, she has lent respectability and verity to Myanmar's regime as it attempted to expunge the Rohingya from the nation. The Rohingya are considered the most persecuted group in the world. Aung San Suu Kyi is blamed for doing nothing to stop the ethnic cleansing and possibly genocide of the Rohingya while she is arguably the strongest single political force in Myanmar. Last November the City of Oxford England Award which she received in 1997 was revoked - it had honored her for standing up to Burma's military. Night's Lantern's initial genocide warning for the Rohingya was posted in August 2012. By then twenty mosques had been burnt and tens of thousands of Rohingya were fleeing. The Washington Post makes available a video of Aung San Suu Kyi on receiving the U.S. Congressional Gold Medal, Sept. 19, 2012 [access:< http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/aung-san-suu-kyi-recieves-congressional-gold-medal/2012/09/19/2dbde804-0297-11e2-91e7-2962c74e7738_video.html >]. As the humanitarian situation of Rohingya Muslims deepened and mass killings and exodus of Rohingya were in progress, Harvard honored Aung San Suu Kyi with the Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award (aka Humanitarian of the Year Award), Sept. 21, 2016. The Harvard Crimson noted some protest by students and Faculty at the awards ceremony which praised Aung San Suu Kyi for “her courageous struggle for democracy, human rights, and peace in her nation." Three Nobel prize winners - Tawakkol Karman of Yemen, Mairead Maguire of Northern Ireland, Shirin Ebadi of Iran, have called for Aung San Suu Kyi and the Myanmar military to stop the genocide or face charges. Myanmar's military denies allegations of genocide, asking for evidence yet refusing entry to UN investigators. It's possible that Aung San Suu Kyi could eventually face charges for a genocide carried out by the country's military. A former political prisoner of the military was she freed in order to play the role she has in a national crime? Myanmar's primarily Buddhist military has engaged for fifty years in a low intensity warfare with ethnic minority groups quite apart from the Rohingya Muslims and the attempts at national reconciliation (which have excluded the Rohingya) are gradually drawing other minorities into a nationwide cease-fire. The military's denial of genocide against the Rohingya should be investigated. Background: from 2012 to 2018 Night's Lantern has noted 14 genocide warnings for the Rohingya in Myanmar. Previous.Partial sources online: "State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi receives humanitarian award from Harvard," Shoon Naing, Sept. 19, 2016, Myanmar Times; "Harvard gives humanitarian award to Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi," Nicole Fleming, Sept. 17, 2016, The Boston Globe; "Aung San Suu Kyi Wins Elie Wiesel Award," Michael Kaminer, April 17, 2012, The Forward; "Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi stripped of human rights award," Laura Koran, March 7, 2018, CNN; "Harvard Foundation Criticizes Myanmar Leader," Delano R. Franklin, Feb. 22, 2018, The Harvard Crimson; "Nobel peace laureates to Suu Kyi: "End Rohingya genocide or face prosecution," Reuters, March 7, 2018, Times of Malta; "Aung San Suu Kyi Scores 1st Win in Myanmar's Crumbling Peace Process," Ben Dunant, Feb.16, 2018, VOA; "Myanmar says it would like to see 'clear evidence' of genocide," Tom Miles, March 8, 2018, Reuters.
March 8, 2018
February 24, 2018France Western Balkans Israel U.S.
France: President Macron is planning to bring back the draft. After a twenty year hiatus the plans are for compulsory national service for women as well. All young people in the country can look forward to a shared experience of military programming. The draft provides a more direct, active interface with corporate mind control, marketing and population management than available with TV and the Arts. The length of service is to be determined. Macron himself hasn't served in the military.Partial sources online: "French president Emmanuel Macron to bring back compulsory military service for young people," Jon Stone, Feb. 14, 2018, Independent; "Macron vows to bring back ‘compulsory’ national service for French youth," Feb. 14, 2018, TV-Novosti.
Western Balkans: returning from a trip through Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, the United Nations Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide has warned of polarization throughout this region. Adama Dieng noted lack of a common narrative needed to stabilize regional history and has asked for the suffering of victims from the conflicts to be recognized, addressed and cared for by all parties. Regional degeneration as enforced by NATO's dismemberment of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Under Tito the military ranks held both Serbs and Croats. An explanation for the extreme destabilization may be corporate wars. The Southern Gas Corridor project is planned through the region to take gas from Azerbaijan to Europe through Turkey. Destabilized governments are more easily bought to corporate uses but offer less security, which results in fascist controls or takeovers. The routes of the projected pipeline which include the Trans Anatolian Pipeline and the Trans Adriatic Pipeline, are apparently still being worked out; the pipeline purpose is to replace Europe's need for Russian gas.Partial sources online: "The Balkans: The new natural gas pipeline is being planned," Nefeli Tzanetakou, Feb. 19, 2018, Independent Balkan News Agency; "UN adviser on prevention of genocide warns of challenges in Western Balkans," Feb. 13, 2018, Xinhuanet.
Israel: the aquifer that supplies water needs for the 2 million residents of the Gaza strip is almost entirely contaminated by salt, from sea water replacing aquifer water due to over-pumping, and sewage. Private suppliers offer drinking water at six times the regular cost. Israel's military actions against Gaza have heavily damaged the infra-structure. Israel's blockade of the Border with Egypt slows the entry of supplies for re-building. The area desalinization plant requires electricity which is often not available. It's alleged that the government of Israel is intentionally depriving Gaza of water necessary for survival. If so the government of Israel adds to its risk of being charged with genocide. It would be hard to refute allegations that Israel's government and military policies are intentionally creating conditions of life which make life unsustainable for Gaza's citizens. An ongoing genocide warning. This is an area of the law Israel shows little fear of. Dan Gertler, an Israeli mining resources broker operating in Democratic Republic of Congo within a context of genocide due to the carnage surrounding mining interests has recently been sanctioned by the U.S. despite claims that he has improved the Congo's infrastructure. In Israel, 40,000 Africans (from Eritrea and Sudan) are singled out to be threatened with deportation or prison.Partial sources online: "Ninety-seven Percent of Gaza Drinking Water Contaminated by Sewage, Salt, Expert Warns," Zafrir Rinat, Jan.21, 2018, Haaretz; "More than 97% of Gaza water undrinkable due to Israeli measures," Jan.21, 2018, Days of Palestine; "Genocide? As Gaza Dries Out, Israel Turns Off Fresh Water Spigot," Darius Shahtahmasebi, Feb.15, 2018, Mint Press News; "Israel gives thousands of African migrants a choice — go to jail, or be deported to a country you’ve never seen before," Rodney Muhumuza AP, Feb. 21, 2018, The Toronto Star; "Israeli Diamond Tycoon With Ties to Democratic Republic of Congo Slapped With U.S. Sanctions," Dec. 22, 2017, Haaretz.
U.S.: a reminder. While her trial was probably illegal under international law Aafia Siddiqui, was convicted in New York City for allegedly firing on U.S. guards when she was a U.S. prisoner in Afghanistan. The only person shot was Ms. Siddiqui. She is currently serving an 86-year sentence in Federal Medical Center, Carswell Fort Worth. New York City was a government preferred venue for trials of alleged "terrorists" due to location of the World Trade Centers and their destruction. The mother of three, with a B.S. degree from M.I.T. and a Phd in neurosciences from Brandeis University is a Muslim. She hasn't been allowed telephone contact with her family for two and a half years. Encouraged toward sensitivity by an advanced education and toward gentleness by motherhood she became victim of abuse by the U.S. military, the U.S. media, U.S. law enforcement, the U.S. judicial system and the U.S. bureau of prisons. Pakistani authorities believe her to be one of the most severely abused women in the Western world. She was at the least publicly, frighteningly and with impunity abused and continues to be. Western women's movements have been too fearful to ask for her return to Pakistan. Previous.Partial sources online: "Legal experts term Aafia Siddiqui ‘most wronged woman on the planet today’," March 4, 2017, Daily Times (Pakistan); "Dr Aafia’s sister prays for her safe release in 2018," Dec. 31, 2017, The Nation (Pakistan).
February 17, 2018
Myanmar: it's evident Burma has tried to destroy the Rohingya as an ethnic and religious group in Myanmar: humanitarian and witnessing groups including the UN are barred access to areas of alleged crimes. The journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo who reported on the massacre at Inn Din are under arrest facing long sentences. Facebook has denied Rohingya witnesses access to share their information. Mass graves, personal testimonies of victims, massive exodus of refugees attest to the crime in progress. Some insight into why the global community has not insisted the crime be stopped is suggested by U.S. treatment of Aung San Suu Kyi (previous), a Nobel Prize winner favoured with awards and praise by the U.S. government and liberal establishment. She refused to intercede or call for a stop to the military's actions against the Rohngya as people died or fled by the thousands. While Aung San Suu Kyi is acknowledged as a primary force behind the power in Myanmar, she doesn't hold government office and Canada has sanctioned instead a specific general, Maj. Gen. Maung Maung Soe, for crimes against the Rohingya. The recognition of a genocide in progress is suppressed which allows the region to maintain its economic standing and ability to honor heavy investment and pay its debts. Canada's envoy to the region, Bob Rae was unsure the Rohingya refugees would be allowed to return home. Several Canadian groups concerned with genocide which usually serve government policies, have helped organize a "Berlin Conference on the Myanmar Genocide," at the Jewish Museum in Berlin, Feb. 26, 2018, to let the German and the European public know more about the genocide in Burma. The conference faces the increasing power of Europe's anti-Islamic fascism: murder of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar makes the treatment of Muslim refugees in Europe look more...civilized, overlooking the causes of the Muslim influx where refugees are usually seeking to survive NATO's military and economic policies in their countries of origin. European nationalism finds it politically useful to fault Muslims, Roma, Jews and Africans. The Europeans may also be reluctant to recognize ethnic cleansing or genocide against the Rohingya, given Europe's current difficulty in recognizing its own crimes against the Roma. In Myanmar Rohingya are accused of being a foreign people though many have lived there for generations; this has some parallel to European persecution of Roma people of Europe for over a thousand years.The conference will feature representatives of the Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies, the Raoul Wallenberg Centre for Human Rights, the Human Rights Research and Education Centre at the University of Ottawa, and other luminaries of government and academia prominent in the Euro-American consortium of genocide studies. Night's Lantern has carried an ongoing genocide warning for Myanmar since 2012. Partial sources online: "Reuters Publishes Shocking Report on Burmese Military’s Killing of Rohingya," Feb. 12, 2018, Democracy Now!; "The genocide in Burma continues. Yet the international community is still sitting on its hands," Azeem Ibrahim, Feb.7, 2018, The Washington Post; "U.S. says Myanmar denial of ethnic cleansing is 'preposterous'," Reuters Staff, Feb. 13, 2018, Thomson Reuters; "Canada imposes sanctions on Myanmar general over Rohingya abuses," Levon Sevunts, Feb. 16, 2018, Radio Canada International; "26 February: Berlin Conference on the Myanmar Genocide," Press release, Feb. 12, 2018, Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies.
February 16, 2018
Israel: while its Education Committee recognized the Armenian genocide in 2016, on February 14th the Knesset, Israel's parliament, refused a bill which recognizes the historical crime. It's believed one and a half million Armenians died as a result of the Ottoman Turkish government's program. While Israel's founding may be attributed to the genocide of European Jews in the Holocaust, the government of Israel's support of other groups victim to genocide is lacking in European defences against persecution of the Roma and what may be an attempt to extinguish the Roma people within France, genocides of Arab peoples - notably the Palestinians, ongoing genocide of the Congolese people in the struggle by foreigners for its resources (ie.). In the instance of denying official recognition of the Armenian genocide, recognition is considered politically unwise (it might offend modern Turkey and the U.S. government as well has failed to recognize the Armenian genocide). To commemorate the genocide against their people and all victims of genocide Armenian religious and civic groups have called for a demonstration in Times Square New York on April 22, from two to four o'clock.Partial sources online: "Armenian Genocide Commemoration to be Held in Times Square on April 22," Feb. 14, 2018, The Armenian Weekly; "Knesset votes down bill recognizing Armenian genocide," Lahav Harkov, Feb. 14, 2018,
U.S.: Blacks and Latinos are being denied mortgages and loans,disproportionately. According to Government statistics the worst offender,TD Bank (of New Jersey) denied 54% of Afro-Americans and 45% of Latinos while the national averages are 16% and 13%. In 2016 an assessment by the Treasury Department Office of the Comptroller of the Currency of TD Bank performance relative to the Community Reinvestment Act found TD Bank very successful.Partial sources online: "Kept out: Loophole in law for the poor spurs gentrification," Aaron Glantz & Emmanuel Martinez, Reveal, Feb. 15, 2018, Ocala Star Banner; "8 lenders not serving people of color for home loans," Aaron Glantz & Emmanuel Martinez and Jennifer Gollan, Reveal, Feb. 15, 2018, The Detroit News.
February 11, 2018
Canada: below and previous. As early as 2009 the Harper government limited Roma immigration to Canada from the Czech Republic by visa restriction and from Hungary as well by claims of "bogus refugees," and application refusals. Night's Lantern carried multiple genocide warnings for both countries (1 and 2). To Immigration and Citizenship Canada's credit the low admission rate has changed with about half the applications from Hungary being accepted (as of Sept, 2017). Recent statistics obtained by CBC News reveal that Ontario has increased its acceptance rate of Roma to 70%. Nationally, acceptances are high for applicants from Syria and Afghanistan and low for applicants from Haiti. The overall higher acceptance rates are attributed to improved waiting times for the bureaucracy's procedures.Partial sources online: "70% of Roma refugee claims now positive in Ontario, after years of low success rates," Lauren Pelley, Feb. 7, 2018, CBC News; "Canada's acceptance rate of asylum seekers is the highest in 27 years — here's why," Tara Carman, Feb. 7, 2018, CBC News.
February 10, 2018
Europe: founded in France, The European Grassroots Antiracist Movement - EGAM, has successfully aided in closing a pig farm located at the site of the Lety Nazi concentration camp in the Czech Republic (previous). Primarily Roma and Sinto people died there in 1942 and 43. The Times of Israel says 90% of the Czech Roma were murdered during the Nazi occupation. To close the pig farm the centre-left Czech government bought the farm from AGPI agricultural firm for 18 million euros. On January 26, 2018 an agreement was signed with representatives of the Czech government and the Museum of Roma Culture at Brno, to clear the pig farm site, restore the dignity of place and build a memorial to the concentration camp victims. With lessons from the mobilization of Roma and concerned Europeans to do something about Lety and to counter Europe's history of oppressing Roma peoples EGAM launched on January 27th the European Foundation for the Memory of the Genocide against the Roma. Its primary purpose will be to research and preserve the facts of the attempts to exterminate the Roma, as well as gain reparations and support for the Roma's fight against racism throughout Europe. EGAM has been protesting anti Roma Sentiment since 2010, as the political use and renewal of prejudice against Roma took root throughout Europe. France and Europe owe Benjamin Abtan, the founder and President of EGAM, thanks for reminding people of the decency in European traditions. France has been evicting Roma people onto the streets and bulldozing their communities since Sarkhozy's presidency. The policy of evicting and 'expatriating' Roms was pursued enthusiastically by socialist François Hollande's Minister of the Interior and Prime Minister, Manuel Valls. Despite an attempt under French law to assure that the evicted were provided with alternative lodgings, they usually weren't. The destruction of Roma encampments continued throughout France, despite warnings from the European Union, and without regard for the human rights of the victims. France's impunity and Europe's silence is reflected in the recent report by the European Roma Rights Centre which notes an increase of 12% from 2016, to 11,309 Roma evicted by French authorities in 2017, with 8161 forcibly evicted. These include entire families thrown into the winter streets. (Previous reports). A legislative attempt to discourage throwing out Roma families in winter only encouraged evictions by authorities in these harshest months. Under current President Emmanuel Macron the evictions have increased. France's continuing and merciless eviction of Roma peoples, destruction of communities, harm to educational opportunities for Rom children, substandard housing for a people, unsanitary water, enforced poverty, and inability to respect the human rights of Roma people, continue a current genocide warning Night's Lantern first noted in 2010. A sample of discrimination as a norm, published in the 2017 ERRC report: “Thousands of children cannot go to school this year” says the Collectif pour le droit des enfants roms à l'éducation (CDERE) in a press release published on 1 September. Recent research conducted by CDERE showed that Romani children are denied access to schooling by a combination of repeated forced evictions, the refusal of mayors to permit school enrolment, and a lack of housing. The organisation calls on the Ministry of Education to take measures to stop this “unworthy, shameful and contrary to human rights situation”.Partial sources online: "Pour la création d’une Fondation européenne pour la mémoire du génocide contre les Roms !" EGAM, Jan.27, 2018, European Grassroots Antiracist Movement email; "Dignité pour Lety!" EGAM, Feb. 5, 2018, European Grassroots Antiracist Movement email; "Czech Republic buys pig farm at former Nazi camp to shutter it," AFP, Nov. 23, 2017, Times of Israel; "Equality Law Fails, Roma Evictions Increase in France," Press release, Feb. 6, 2018, ERRC / European Roma Rights Centre; "Census of forced evictions in living areas occupied by Roma (or people designated as such) in France: Annual results for 2017," ERRC.
February 9, 2018
Canada. Tuberculosis update: in November 114 countries were represented at a World Health Organization conference in Moscow "on Ending Tuberculosis in the Sustainable Development Era: A Multisectoral Response," pledging a global commitment - "the Moscow Declaration to End TB." In a world wide effort so far the global TB rate has dropped 37% since 2000. In Qikiqtarjuaq, Nunavut, a mobile medical clinic was installed February 5th to test all 600 residents of the community for tuberculosis within ten weeks, before moving on to the next community. Nunavut's tuberculosis rate almost doubled between 2016 and 2017. In 2015 its tuberculosis rate was 26 times the average for Canada. It is unclear why the Government of Canada has not declared a national emergency for all areas of Indigenous health, nutrition, and living conditions.Partial sources online: "Tuberculosis May Finally Be History Thanks To Global Efforts," Kate Ryan, Feb. 8, 2018, GOOD Worldwide Inc.; "New global commitment to end tuberculosis," WHO News release, Nov. 17, 2017, World Health Organization; "Major effort underway to fight tuberculosis outbreak in Qikiqtarjuaq, Nunavut," Sara Frizzell, Kieran Oudshoorn, Jan 29, 2018, CBC News; "Canada: why aren’t conditions of life for First Peoples a national emergency?" J. B. Gerald, March 28, 2016, nightslantern.ca.
Background concerning the unacceptable high rates of tuberculosis among First Peoples (see previous 1 and 2): the government is treating these rates and the historical presence of tuberculosis as endemic rather than intentional. However the rates risk being understood as a continuation of early Canada's biological warfare against First Peoples. According to Kevin Annett rampant TB in schools was first reported to the government by Dr. George Orton in Alberta, in 1891. "Germ Warfare in Canada: More Evidence"[access:< https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xCNNfvtNHqw >] discusses attempts to contaminate Blackfoot and Sarcee peoples under the Treaty Seven Indian Reserves administration of Rev. Samuel Timms in Alberta in the early 1900's. Personal testimonies of victims testifying at Annett's "The International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State" (www.itccs.org) provide evidence of biological warfare. These are part of his extensive work recognizing an intention to destroy Canada's Indigenous peoples as inherent in government policies since the country's inception. See previous. His gathering evidence of child abuse against First Peoples extends in later work to evidence of victims from other groups, with allegations against churches, the Vatican, the Pope and the Crown, of sexual abuse or complicity in sexual abuse, but often beyond a narrow focus of the Convention on Genocide as well as conventions of public thinking. While his work in sum may suggest the horrific universality of crimes against children, it nevertheless provides substantial and unrefuted specific evidence of genocide in the government's treatment of Indigenous children. Links are supplied here to the following: Hidden No Longer: Genocide in Canada, Past and Present, by Kevin D. Annett, Updated New Edition of Hidden from History: the Canadian Holocaust (3rd edition), 2010, The International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State and The Friends and Relatives of the Disappeared [access:< http://caid.ca/NoLonHid2010.pdf >]; Hidden from History: The Canadian Holocaust; The Untold Story of the Genocide of Aboriginal Peoples by Church and State in Canada, 2001, The Truth Commission into Genocide in Canada [access:< http://canadiangenocide.nativeweb.org/genocide.pdf >]. See previous 1 and 2. Modern bio-warfare tactics against indigenous groups is usually a suppressed issue in the Americas. Writing of Brazil, Shelton H. Davis in his Victims of the Miracle (1977, Cambridge University Press), refers to Brazilian government files and the Figueiredo Report - These files indicated that outsiders had deliberately introduced smallpox, influenza, tuberculosis, and measles organisms among the tribes of the Mato Grosso region between 1957 and 1963. In addition, the files of the Brazilian minister of the interior also suggested that outsiders had consciously introduced tuberculosis organisms among the tribes of the northern section of the Amazon Basin in 1964 and 1965. [p.11].
January 27, 2018
North Korea (Democratic People's Republic of Korea): Canadian lawyer Christopher Black and the founder of the Centre for Peace Studies at McMaster University, Dr. Graeme MacQueen, have written the International Criminal Court an Open Letter of January 23rd requesting the U.S. threats to commit genocide against North Korea be placed under the Court's investigation. Threats by U.S. President Trump and members of his administration to destroy the people of North Korea, a national group, are noted and underscore the "intent to destroy" understood as the signature of a genocide. The letter also points out that by meeting with the U.S. in Vancouver January 16th Canada's leadership becomes complicit in a conspiracy supporting the threatened use of genocide. Black and MacQueen's letter is an honest and appropriate statement as the Doomsday clock reaches two minutes to twelve. While the U.S. does not submit to the authority of the ICC and reserves the right to decide in individual instances whether it's bound by the Convention on Genocide or not, the law against genocide is also written into U.S. domestic law (U.S. Code; Chapter 50A; Title 18, Part 1, Section § 1091 Genocide) with specific reference to incitement, although attempts to apply it to U.S. leadership have met with continual defeat. Canada is subject to the I.C.C. and the Convention on Genocide is also applicable under domestic law in Canada (for clarification of this: "North American game plans and the Convention on Genocide," John Bart Gerald, May 23, 2012, nightslantern.ca). Night's Lantern issued its initial genocide warning for North Korea on September 24th, 2017.Partial sources online: "The Genocide Conspiracy Against North Korea: An Open Letter to the International Criminal Court," Christopher Black, Jan. 26, 2018, New Eastern Outlook; "'The survival of our entire civilization is at stake': Billionaire George Soros issues a stark warning to the global elite at Davos," Will Martin, Jan. 26, 2018, Business Insider.
January 26, 2018
Canada: the government has renewed and reaffirmed its pledge to provide safe drinking water for all Indigenous communities. A CBC report notes that the number of long term public water advisories has increased from 67 to 91, and 1047 systems for drinking water have become eligible for Indigenous Services Canada funding. The government plans for the water advisories to be no longer necessary by 2021. The 2016 budget allocated 1.8 billion dollars for five years of improvement and maintenance for the water and wastewater infrastructure of reserves, and another nearly 142 million dollars for improved monitoring of the drinking water. Water funding might also draw on the 4 billion dollars (over ten years) allocated to improving community infrastructure, as well as on previous allocations. Briefing documents released at Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott's news conference Jan. 23rd, indicate that non Indigenous Canadians outlive their native counterparts by 15 years; infant mortality rates are two to three times higher for Indigenous people; the rate of diabetes for example is 4 times higher. The government's desire to address these problems is aware of a 30 billion dollar deficit needed for the infrastructure of the reserves. Concerning unequal welfare services for children on reserves as compared to the general population, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal has ruled that the government must end the inequality and the Minister is seeking the budgeting necessary for full compliance. The next budget is to also include funds to help keep children from 'troubled' families, in community rather than placed in foster homes. There are Indigenous children subjected to the child welfare system who consider it, as practised, cultural genocide. Minister Philpott's approaches to common sense, encouraged by Tribunal order and recognizing conditions of long term neglect, are a step forward for government. Night's Lantern began noting genocide warnings for the Aboriginal communities in 2005.Partial sources online: "'We must get this done': Liberals stick to First Nations water promise amid new boil-water advisories," John Paul Tasker, Jan.23, 2018, CBC News; "Feds' First Nations drinkable water pledge just got harder," Rachel Aiello, Jan. 23, 2018, CTV News; "Lifespan of Indigenous people 15 years shorter than that of other Canadians, federal documents say," The Canadian Press, Jan. 23, 2018, CBC News; "Liberal budget will contain funds to keep more Indigenous kids out of foster care: Philpott," Gloria Galloway, Jan.23, 2018, The Globe and Mail; "The Millennium Scoop: Indigenous youth say care system repeats horrors of the past," Anna Maria Tremonti, Jan. 25, 2018, The Current / CBC radio.
January 20, 2018Chalk River Ontario Qikiqtarjuaq Nunavut Maskwacis, Alberta Chile Peru
Chalk River, Ontario : the private company, Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, is planning a nuclear waste disposal facility about a kilometer from the Ottawa River 180 miles upstream from Ottawa. The waste source would primarily be the Chalk River nuclear facility, most recently in the news as a source of nuclear trash trucked from Chalk River to Savannah Georgia in 2017 (Previous 1 and 2). The facility would take in a million cubic metres of nuclear waste from 2020 to 2070, leaving the waste to contaminate the land, the water table, the Ottawa River, and the downstream major cities of Ottawa and Montreal. Chalk River nuclear labs is asking for a ten-year renewal of its operating license from the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission which will hold public hearings from Jan.23rd to 25th at Pembroke Ontario. The company has not consulted with Indigenous group about storing the nuclear waste, as required under the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.Partial sources online: "'Insanity' to allow nuclear waste disposal near Ottawa River, Indigenous groups say," Jan. 18, 2018, CBC News; "Proposed radioactive waste disposal site in Chalk River raises concerns," Apr. 10, 2017, CBC News.
Qikiqtarjuaq, Nunavut: For the first time the Government of Nunavut has dispatched a medical team to address tuberculosis in Qikiqtarjuaq where 10% of the residents have TB. Nunavut's chief medical officer is worried by high infection rates in about two thirds of the territory's communities. Historically the problem has been denied adequate Federal resources, concern and attention. Last Fall the Federal government of Canada launched a program to address tuberculosis among the Inuit, whose TB rate in 2015 was 270 times that of non-Indigenous Canadians. Previous. Tuberculosis among the Inuit is an affliction historically documented in, for example, surviving data on the shipments of thousands of Inuit TB patients to Hamilton Ontario from the 1940's to 1960's. Within a perspective of the Convention on Genocide, this is part of a larger emergency which has continued for so many years without being adequately addressed, that there is a strong argument for the intention of a genocide. Partial sources online: "10% of residents in Nunavut community infected with TB, crisis team to visit," Dec. 29, 2017, CBC News; "Inuit, Ottawa launch task force to fight tuberculosis in the North," Nick Murray, Oct. 8, 2017, CBC News; "'It gave me a sense of closure': Database on Inuit tuberculosis graves offers some answers," Nick Murray, Oct. 5, 2017, CBC News.
Maskwacis, Alberta: Maskwacis is four Indigenous communities about 70 to 100 kilometres to the south of Edmonton. By unofficial report, since December fourteen people have taken their own lives (Morin, CBC). Community members say emergency suicide hotlines connect to people with no understanding of Indigenous culture. The people fear hospitals which might lock them up or where children services will take away their kids. Within a perspective of the Convention on Genocide, this is part of a larger emergency where the conditions of a genocide remain inadequately addressed assuring its continuation.Partial sources online: "No state of emergency on Alberta First Nation reeling from number of suicides," Martha Troian, Jan. 11, 2018, APTN National News;"'We are dying': Maskwacis community members overwhelmed by suicides," Brandi Morin, Jan 14, 2018, CBC News.
Chile: the country hosted a visit from Pope Francis in the midst of a major controversy concerning sexual abuse by Catholic priests. The Tampa Bay Times reports that the visit was marked by the burning of 11 (sic) Roman Catholic Churches. The source of the fire bombings is unclear though the media tries to blame the Mapuche Indians who have historically resisted European excesses. Many people remain angry at the Pope's appointment of a bishop with close ties to the country's best known exposed pedophile priest, Rev. Fernando Karadima. In the last ten years 78 members of religious orders or priests have been charged with or publicly accused of sexual abuses. While commiserating with victims of abuse during his visit the Pope's departure from Chile was marred by his statement refusing to accede to allegations - without proof beyond the accusations of Karadima's victims, that Bishop Juan Barros knew about and had covered up Karadima's crimes. The appointment of Barros and public discrediting of victim testimony reminds those who feared the Church's complicity and allegations of Pope Francis's collaboration with the Videla government during Argentina's 'dirty war'. Partial sources online: "In Chile, pope met by protests, threats, burned churches," Jan. 19, 2018, Tampa Bay Times; "Pope Francis accuses Chilean church sexual abuse victims of slander," AP, Jan. 19, 2018, The Guardian.
Peru: Following the pardon of war criminal genocidaire Alberto Fujimori, the popularity of President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski has fallen to a new low (20%). Kuczynski is currently married to Nancy Ann Lange of Rock Springs, Wisconsin, cousin of Jessica Lange, and has worked for American banking and resource extraction as well as the World Bank and IMF. Outside the spheres of corporate politics people generally believe Fujimori killed too many people and had too many Indigenous women sterilized, with too great a profit to himself and his family, to be convincingly pardoned. The Pope was called in to attempt a reconciliation in this predominantly Catholic country, but has avoided directly confronting the problem of Fujimori. Usually the Church stands against forced sterilization and death squad murders. It has made an attempt to take up the interests of Peru's Indigenous peoples who were Fujimori's main intended victims. The pope was able to note in a footnote, some protest to ongoing (AP) advocacy of sterilizing women without informed consent. Visiting Peru's Amazonian rainforest the pope declared the Amazon "the heart of the Church" and "our common home," a commonality which has historically enforced a genocide of the Amazon's Indigenous peoples. The papal visit was greeted with several fires including the burning of Christ on the Lima hillside, which officials traced to a short circuit. Shortly before the Pope's visit the Vatican took over the Sodalitium Christianae Vitae, a right-wing Catholic movement whose founder Luis Fernando Figari is fleeing charges of sexual abuse: the society was intended to recruit "soldiers for god," while countering liberation theology.Partial sources online: "Ahead of Pope Francis visit, Vatican takes over Peru Catholic movement whose founder was accused of abuse," Nicole Winfield (AP), Jan. 10, 2018, thestar.com; "Pope Francis tells Indigenous in Peru that Amazon is the ‘heart of the church’," Nicole Winfield (AP), Christine Armario, Jan. 19, 2018, thestar.com; "Pope lands in Peru as president seeks help in political crisis," Jan. 18, 2018, Reuters; "The Latest: Pope decries sterilization campaigns in Peru," Jan. 19, 2018, Associated Press.>
January 10, 2018
Honduras: results of the Presidential election of November 26th vary according to the political and financial interests of their sources. Omitting most source notations here I can offer that it's likely the Presidential election was won by Salvador Nasralla while the incumbent President Juan Orlando Hernandez declared himself the winner. U.S. supported vote counts and tallies assured the incumbent President's victory. Hernandez represents the interests and group which took over Honduras through military coup in 2009, deposing elected president Manuel Zelaya (background). Nasralla believes Hernandez only has the backing of 10% of the Honduran people. Mondoweiss reports that during 2017 the Hernandez government purchased 209 million dollars worth of arms from Israel. If the arms are to protect the state from its people there's a constant latent risk of mass casualties. In the aftermath of the election 17 people were killed. Reportedly the former elected president Manuel Zelaya, allied with Nasralla, has called the people to the streets January 20th in a demonstration against inauguration of a fraudulent government. Nasralla's people held a peaceful march in San Pedro Sula January 6th. But Piensa Chile quotes Nasralla in this way: “Tienen que respetar mi triunfo. Si no lo quieren respetar, el pueblo hará que se respete mi triunfo. Nosotros tenemos el objetivo de que el 27 de enero se imponga la voluntad popular, independientemente de lo que cuatro gatos quieren”.
Guatemala: as noted December 21, the trial of Rios Montt has resumed despite years of corrupt legal tactics and delays. The initial trial found Rios Montt guilty of genocide and was invalidated on technical grounds. Now Rios Montt is beyond the reach of punishment due to medical and mental infirmity. Guatemala's impunity in attempts to eradicate portions of its Indigenous population risks encouraging impunity by other fascist leaders. Rios Montt's initial trial raised the awareness that the U.S. through training, advisors and the initiation of supposed anti-terror programs, as well as Israel, through training and arms supply, were complicit in the atrocities of Guatemala's military under the orders of Rios Montt. Both governments (with Honduras and smaller nations) are of the nine nations who have defied international law and assigned Jerusalem to Israel. In Guatemala a government program is trying to disenfranchise the country's ability to prosecute the crimes of mass slaughter protected by powerful foreign interests. To interject an historical note here: the investigation and trial of Rios Montt could occur because The International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG), initially a UN sponsored effort to initiate a standard of justice in the country, over some years strengthened the Attorney General's Office and impartiality of the courts allowing investigation and prosecution of atrocities. Back in 1999 the Commission for Historical Clarification, sponsored by the U.N., had found Guatemala responsible for acts of genocide against the Mayan Ixil but Guatemala's legal system was faced with criminal networks run by the government. Progress: in March 2018, the High Risk Court "C" will bring to trial 5 former high ranking military officers who were thought to be beyond justice, and are charged with the 1981 detention and abuse of Molina Theissen and on her escape to Mexico the 'disappearance' of her 14 year old brother. The previous president Pérez Molina (who as a young officer directly participated in the genocide of Ixil Maya) was removed from office for corruption. So the prosecution of Rios Montt is the result of sacrifices and risks to their lives of many brave people. The current president Jimmy Morales continually referred to as a former TV comedian, is attempting to banish from the country Iván Velázquez, as the head of The International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG). It's an attempt to terrorize all concerned with human rights including the judges whose 2013 conviction of Rios Montt has required protection of their lives and integrity from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. The enduring impunity of a Guatemalan elite which allowed if not encouraged the crime to proceed in the past, continues a genocide warning for the country's Indigenous people. If the impunity of the elite is successful in Guatemala, the defenses against genocide elsewhere will be damaged and should raise genocide warnings for all Indigenous groups in the Americas.Partial sources online: "High-Profile Molina Theissen Trial to Start in Guatemala in March 2018," Jo-Marie Burt, Oct.27, 2017, International Justice Monitor; "CICIG, Leader of Anti-Corruption Efforts in Guatemala, Under Siege (Part I)," Jo-Marie Burt and Paulo Estrada, Oct. 2, 2017, International Justice Monitor; "The Anti-CICIG Campaign in Guatemala: Implications for Grave Crimes Cases (Part II)," Jo-Marie Burt and Paulo Estrada, Oct. 4, 2017, International Justice Monitor; "Bodies emerge from Guatemala’s war-era ‘model villages’," Dec. 30, 2017, BBC News; "CICIG, Leader of Anti-Corruption Efforts in Guatemala, Under Siege (Part I)," Jo-Marie Burt and Paulo Estrada Oct. 2, 2017, International Justice Monitor; "CIDH ordena proteger a jueces en Guatemala," Aug. 7, 2013, International Center for Transitional Justice. My essays on Guatemala include "Guatemala: a brave judiciary" (2013), "Masks of Investment: a Trial in Guatemala" (2013), "Good vs. Evil in Guatemala" (2013), "Genocide Denial in Guatemala" (2013).
January 9, 2018
Libya: recommended, "Ross Kemp - Libya's Migrant Hell" 54:34 minutes, provides some understanding of what NATO's destruction of Libya has meant (my sequence of entries concerning war crimes in Libya is available here). The nation of Libya was destroyed by covert actions of NATO countries followed by the 2012 bombing campaign. India refused to vote for Security Council Resolution 1973 which was used to justify the bombing, on the basis that the U.S. was using the "responsibility to protect" as a pretext for armed intervention, which should only be used as a last resort against "genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity" Sept. 21, 2012. The destruction of a functioning non-hostile society raises consideration of the crime of genocide. The malice of intention was made clear by Secretary of State Clinton. I understand this as an attempt to destroy a national group because of its allegiance to its leader. Most genocide prevention programs are funded by the perpetrators and ignore this, yet the words of the Convention on Genocide are also clear. The NATO attempt at an African genocide in Libya now extends to the deaths and displacement of thousands on thousands of people from different African countries subject to a Euro-American neo-colonial expansion which through destabilization, non-native financial control, direct military (Côte d'Ivoire) takeover, and corporate complicit African corruption, forces people to leave.
2017 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
November 3, 2018