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2017 suppressed news
concerned with the prevention of genocide
by j. b. gerald
2018January 20, 2018 Chalk 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
20 January 2018