Archive for Human Rights

What the US Media Won’t Tell You About Ukraine

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 6, 2014 by Spartan of Truth

From Pakalert

Ted Rall

As usual, America’s foreign correspondents are falling down on the job.

Stories devoid of historical context cast Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as a naked act of neo-Soviet aggression. Considering that the relevant history begins a mere two decades ago, its omission is inexcusable.

What the US Media Won't Tell You About Ukraine

The spark that led to the takeover of Crimea was not the overthrow of President Viktor Yanukovich. It is what happened the day after.

A 2012 law gave the Russian language official status in regions where Russians comprise more than 10% of the population. This is the case in most of eastern Ukraine and particularly in Crimea, where 59% are ethnic Russians.

One week ago, Ukraine’s rump parliament (members of Yanukovich’s party, hiding from opposition forces and in fear for their lives, didn’t show up) took advantage of Yanukovich’s downfall to overturn the language law. Americans didn’t notice, but Russians did.

Attack on the Russian language in Ukraine is a brutal violation of ethnic minority rights,” Konstantin Dolgov, the Russian Foreign Ministry’s commissioner for human rights, tweeted that day.

Seems a little over-the-top, right?

Sure, but only if you don’t know that millions of ethnic Russians in former Soviet Republics have suffered widespread discrimination and harassment since the 1991 collapse — and that their troubles began with laws eliminating Russian as an official language.

Laws like the one passed last week in Ukraine.

The demise of the Soviet Union left 25 million Russians stranded in 14 newly independent states, in such countries as Belarus, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Ukraine. These new countries had to scramble in order to create the trappings of national identity virtually overnight. They designed new flags, composed national anthems and printed new currency.

To instill a sense of loyalty and patriotism, the governments of many of the freshly-minted republics resorted to rank nationalism.

Nationalism isn’t just about what your country is. It’s also about what it isn’t. This requires defining some things — some people — as outsiders. Unwanted. Scapegoats. Enemies of the state.

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Continuity of Military Agenda: Syria Catastrophe Engineered Under Bush, Executed Verbatim Under Obama

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 13, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From Global Research

By Peter Phillips and Brady Osborne

Global Research, September 13, 2013

Project Censored

The rise of Al Qaeda in Syria and the predictable bloodbath that followed is the documented work of US, Israel, & Saudi Arabia.

 Tens of thousands of deaths, devastated cities, and the scattering of terrified Syrian minorities add up to a catastrophe that has unfolded in Syria over the last 2 years. International organizations including the UN call it the worst humanitarian catastrophe of the 21st century, and despite this, have put little effort into tracking down the actual genesis of the conflict, the key players perpetuating the violence, and in prescribing the obvious solutions to this conflict. With a recent initiative by Russia and Syria blunting the West’s pro-war drive, Western propagandists have attempted to reassert their crumbling narrative regarding the conflict, past, present, and future.

 The Genesis of Syria’s Conflict

 We are told by Western politicians and Western media houses that the conflict in Syria began with a spontaneous “peaceful,” “pro-democracy” uprising influenced by similar demonstrations in Tunisia and Egypt. We are told that these peaceful protests were brutally crushed by the Syrian government and resulted in the militarization of the so-called “opposition.”

 This is a verified lie.

 In an April 2011 AFP report, Michael Posner, the assistant US Secretary of State for Human Rights and Labor, admitted that [emphasis added]:

 “US government has budgeted $50 million in the last two years [starting in 2009] to develop new technologies to help activists protect themselves from arrest and prosecution by authoritarian governments.”The report went on to admit that the US (emphasis added) “organized training sessions for 5,000 activists in different parts of the world. A session held in the Middle East about six weeks ago gathered activists from Tunisia, Egypt, Syria and Lebanon who returned to their countries with the aim of training their colleagues there.” Posner would add, “They went back and there’s a ripple effect.”

 Not only were the protests in Syria planned, funded, and directed by the US State Department, years before the so-called “Arab Spring” began, but so were the alleged protests that “triggered” events in Syria – namely similarly engineered protests in Tunisia, Egypt, and the violent US-led subversion carried out in Libya.

 What’s more disturbing is that the US-engineered “protests” were not designed to overthrow targeted governments, but instead to serve as a smokescreen for similarly pre-planned armed subversion. As early as 2007, under then President George Bush, the arming, funding, and otherwise supporting of sectarian extremists across the Middle East to undermine Lebanon, Syria, and Iran was put into motion.

 Admissions by administration officials, intelligence agents, and the very militant groups the US was funding and preparing for armed subversion in 2007 were documented in Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh’s New Yorker extensive 9-page report,  ”The Redirection: Is the Administration’s new policy benefiting our enemies in the war on terrorism?” In it he would state clearly that:

 “To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has coöperated with Saudi Arabia’s government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.”

 Six years later, it could not be more obvious that indeed, militants aligned to Al Qaeda have been armed, equipped, and unleashed in an unprecedented wave of US-Saudi-Israeli state-sponsored terrorism against Syria and neighboring Lebanon. With safe havens in NATO-member Turkey, US-occupied Jordan, and pouring in from Saudi-friendly regions of Lebanon, it could not be clearer who is behind the rise and perpetuation of Al Qaeda in Syria.

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bushobama

The rise of Al Qaeda in Syria and the predictable bloodbath that followed is the documented work of US, Israel, & Saudi Arabia.

Tens of thousands of deaths, devastated cities, and the scattering of terrified Syrian minorities add up to a catastrophe that has unfolded in Syria over the last 2 years. International organizations including the UN call it the worst humanitarian catastrophe of the 21st century, and despite this, have put little effort into tracking down the actual genesis of the conflict, the key players perpetuating the violence, and in prescribing the obvious solutions to this conflict. With a recent initiative by Russia and Syria blunting the West’s pro-war drive, Western propagandists have attempted to reassert their crumbling narrative regarding the conflict, past, present, and future.

The Genesis of Syria’s Conflict

We are told by Western politicians and Western media houses that the conflict in Syria began with a spontaneous “peaceful,” “pro-democracy” uprising influenced by similar demonstrations in Tunisia and Egypt. We are told that these peaceful protests were brutally crushed by the Syrian government and resulted in the militarization of the so-called “opposition.”

This is a verified lie.

In an April 2011 AFP report, Michael Posner, the assistant US Secretary of State for Human Rights and Labor, admitted that [emphasis added]:

“US government has budgeted $50 million in the last two years [starting in 2009] to develop new technologies to help activists protect themselves from arrest and prosecution by authoritarian governments.”The report went on to admit that the US (emphasis added) “organized training sessions for 5,000 activists in different parts of the world. A session held in the Middle East about six weeks ago gathered activists from Tunisia, Egypt, Syria and Lebanon who returned to their countries with the aim of training their colleagues there.” Posner would add, “They went back and there’s a ripple effect.”

Not only were the protests in Syria planned, funded, and directed by the US State Department, years before the so-called “Arab Spring” began, but so were the alleged protests that “triggered” events in Syria – namely similarly engineered protests in Tunisia, Egypt, and the violent US-led subversion carried out in Libya.

What’s more disturbing is that the US-engineered “protests” were not designed to overthrow targeted governments, but instead to serve as a smokescreen for similarly pre-planned armed subversion. As early as 2007, under then President George Bush, the arming, funding, and otherwise supporting of sectarian extremists across the Middle East to undermine Lebanon, Syria, and Iran was put into motion.

Admissions by administration officials, intelligence agents, and the very militant groups the US was funding and preparing for armed subversion in 2007 were documented in Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh’s New Yorker extensive 9-page report,  ”The Redirection: Is the Administration’s new policy benefiting our enemies in the war on terrorism?” In it he would state clearly that:

“To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has coöperated with Saudi Arabia’s government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.”

Six years later, it could not be more obvious that indeed, militants aligned to Al Qaeda have been armed, equipped, and unleashed in an unprecedented wave of US-Saudi-Israeli state-sponsored terrorism against Syria and neighboring Lebanon. With safe havens in NATO-member Turkey, US-occupied Jordan, and pouring in from Saudi-friendly regions of Lebanon, it could not be clearer who is behind the rise and perpetuation of Al Qaeda in Syria.

– See more at: http://www.globalresearch.ca/continuity-of-agenda-syria-catastrophe-engineered-under-bush-executed-verbatim-under-obama/5349648?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=continuity-of-agenda-syria-catastrophe-engineered-under-bush-executed-verbatim-under-obama#sthash.g0e6L3Bh.dpuf

RT ~ Greenwald: Snowden has enough information to cause US govt ‘worst damage in history’

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 17, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From Russia Today

 

AFP Photo / Vasily Maximov

AFP Photo / Vasily Maximov

Former NSA contractor and whistleblower Edward Snowden possesses dangerous information which could potentially lead to America’s “worst nightmare” if it is revealed, according to the journalist who first published Snowden’s leaked documents.

“Snowden has enough information to cause more damage to the US government in a minute alone than anyone else has ever had in the history of the United States,” Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian journalist responsible for publishing some of Snowden’s first leaks, told Argentina-based newspaper La Nación.

“But that’s not his goal. His objective is to expose software that people around the world use without knowing what they are exposing themselves to, without consciously agreeing to surrender their rights to privacy. He has a huge number of documents that would be very harmful to the US government if they were made public,” Greenwald said.

He added that Washington should be exercising care in dealing with the Snowden because he has the potential to do further damage to the US.

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CONSCIOUS LIVING guest Wally Dove Action Suit Against Canada

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 14, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From Blog Talk Radio

https://i0.wp.com/cdn.btrcdn.com/pics/hostpics/headers/6565heada260e8e3-5cab-4675-99cd-e26d6301187c_global-facts-radio-1000.jpg

Link to the Radio Show

Welcome to another episode of CONSCIOUS LIVING on Global F.A.C.T. Radio.

Returning guest Wally Dove, of the Human Rights Defenders League (HRDL), will be giving us an update on the status of his Legal Action Suit against the government of Canada for violation of our Human Rights.

He will also update us on the status of the support the HRDL has been receiving since his last appearance on our show over a month ago.

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Stephen Lendman ~ Whistleblowing: Exemplary Patriotism

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 11, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From Daily Censored

 

images-1

By Stephen Lendman

Whistleblowing reflects doing the right thing. It exposes wrongdoing. It does so because it matters.

Edward Joseph Snowden follows a noble tradition. Others before him established it. Daniel Ellsberg called his NSA leak the most important in US history. More on him below.

Expressions of patriotism can reflect good or ill. Samuel Johnson said it’s the last refuge of a scoundrel. Thomas Paine called dissent its highest form. So did Howard Zinn.
According to Machiavelli:

 

“When the safety of one’s country wholly depends on the decision to be taken, no attention should be paid either to justice or injustice, to kindness or cruelty, or to its being praiseworthy or ignominious.”

 

 

Tolstoy said:

 

“In our day the feeling of patriotism is an unnatural, irrational, and harmful feeling, and a cause of a great part of the ills from which mankind is suffering; and consequently, this feeling should not be cultivated, as is now being done, but should, on the contrary, be suppressed and eradicated by all means available to rational men.”

 

Philosophy Professor Stephen Nathanson believes patriotism involves:

 

• special affection for one’s own country;

 

• a sense of personal identification with the country;

 

• special concern for the well-being of the country; and

 

• willingness to sacrifice to promote the country’s good.

 

Socrates once said:

 

“Patriotism does not require one to agree with everything that his country does, and would actually promote analytical questioning in a quest to make the country the best it possibly can be.”

 

The best involves strict adherence to the highest legal, ethical and moral standards. Upholding universal civil and human rights is fundamental. So is government of, by and for everyone equitably. Openness, accountability and candor can’t be compromised.

 

When governments ill-serve, exposing wrongdoing is vital. It takes courage to do so. It involves sacrificing for the greater good. It includes risking personal harm and welfare. It means doing what’s right because it matters. It reflects patriotism’s highest form.

 

Daniel Ellsberg, Bradley Manning and Julian Assange are best known. So is Mordechai Vanunu. More on him below. Few remember Peter Buxtun. He’s a former US Public Health Service employee.

 

He exposed the Tuskegee syphilis experiment. About 200 Black men were infected. It was done to watch their progression. They were left to die untreated. Whistleblowing stopped further harm.

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Press TV ~ The US press and repression in the Obama era

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 28, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From Press TV

We are supposed to take seriously the outrage coming from members of the corporate press in response to the revelation that the Obama administration’s ever expanding use of executive powers to intimidate and crush dissent had turned its focus on the U.S. press.

 

But those of us who have consistently struggled to defend the human rights of the victims of the repressive national security state over the last few years have a few very simple questions for the press – where was the outrage or even concern when the target of the State was the “usual suspects” of Black, Brown and poor folks and their ‘radical” sympathizers? Why was there so little concern expressed by the Press when Obama’s national security apparatus conducted raids on oppositional organizations, expanded the infiltration of lawful organizations and increased domestic electronic and communication surveillance? And when this administration shamelessly claimed the power to be the judge, jury and executioner of anyone that ended up on one of its kill lists, including U.S. citizens, why didn’t this incredible abuse of State power garner at least some serious concern from the press, let alone outrage?

 

Of course only the most unprincipled sycophants of the Obama administration would disagree that focusing the repressive state apparatus on working journalists and the outlets they work for is a dramatic abuse of Executive power. Yet in the run-up to this moment of outrage the press seemed reluctant to seriously consider what was so obvious to many of us. That the Obama Presidency, from the beginning, was clearly committed to maintaining and even building on the trajectory of expanding Executive power which began during the Bush administration that narrowed the range of constitutional and human rights of individuals and groups in the U.S.

 

The liberal press was so caught-up in this cult of personality that was so much a part of the Obama phenomenon, it did not see or choose to ignore that the Obama administration’s approach to civil liberties turned his administration into act three of the Bush administration. So While the Obama administration used the espionage act to clamp down on whistle-blowers, its Department of Homeland Security coordinated the national repression of Occupy Wall street and its lawyers defended the Bush administration’s position that opposed allowing individual suites against the government agencies and telecom companies accused of engaging in warrantless electronic surveillance, the only voices of concern came from the marginalized radical press.

 

And even though the press was warned that the legal theories advanced by the Obama administration in the criminal investigation of WikiLeaks could be easily applied to criminalize the acts of mainstream journalists, the press choose instead not to defend Julius Assange and Wikileaks. For the bourgeois press, it appears that they believed that since they gleefully parroted the government line on issues from Libya to the need for deficit reduction, the government would never turn its repressive attention on it.

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Max Igan ~ The Silent War

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 25, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From thecrowhouse

 

Universal Law trumps all others.

1. No man or woman, in or out of government shall initiate force, threat of force or fraud against my life and property and, any and all contracts I am a party to, not giving full disclosure to me, whether signed by me or not, are void at my discretion.

2. I may use force in self-defense against anyone that violates Law 1.

3. There shall be no exceptions to Law 1 and 2.

“When the tyrant has disposed of foreign enemies by conquest or treaty and there is nothing to fear from them, then he is always stirring up some war or other, in order that the people may require a leader” – Plato

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Press TV ~ Canada’s slavish obedience to US, Israel

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 29, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From Press TV …

This picture shows Canada’s Prime Minister Stephen Harper (R) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shaking hands after a joint press conference on Parliament Hill, Ottawa, March 2, 2012.

This picture shows Canada’s Prime Minister Stephen Harper (R) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shaking hands after a joint press conference on Parliament Hill, Ottawa,
By Eric Walberg

This sorry state of Canadian political life is the fruit of the Conservatives’ slavish obedience to every US whim, and of its decision to abandon any pretense of an independent foreign policy, making all decisions in consultation with Israeli advisers.”

The world is taking note of the ruling Conservatives’ shameful betrayal of Canada’s once admirable reputation as a fair country, sincerely working on the world stage to improve the lot of the disadvantaged and suffering.

In the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review, Canada was criticized to such an extent that the Council decided to send the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and representatives of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, to investigate.

Minister of Foreign Affairs spokesman Joseph Lavoie dismissed complaints by

*China of “widespread racial discrimination”,

*Iran of “child sexual exploitation and trafficking, the right to food, discriminatory law and regulation against indigenous people and minority groups including Muslim, Arab and African communities”,

*Pakistan of “increased poverty and unemployment rate among immigrant communities”,

*Egypt of “racial profiling in law-enforcement action”, and

*Cuba of “racism and xenophobia” in Canada,

insisting that “Canada has a track record of being a human rights leader, at home and around the world.”

The visits come at an awkward moment for the Conservatives, as it makes a public display of victimizing Muslims as part of a campaign to ram through the “Combating Terrorism Act” (Bill S-7), which gives the state extraordinary powers to detain suspects without any charges and without any legal protections for up to a year.

This sorry state of Canadian political life is the fruit of the Conservatives’ slavish obedience to every US whim, and of its decision to abandon any pretense of an independent foreign policy, making all decisions in consultation with Israeli advisers under the public security cooperation “partnership” signed in 2008 by Canada and Israel to “protect their respective countries’ population, assets and interests from common threats”. Israel security agents now officially assist Canada’s security services, the RCMP and CSIS, in profiling Canadians citizens who are Muslims and monitoring individuals and/or organizations in Canada involved in supporting the rights of Palestinians and other such nefarious activities. Even the usually timid UN is appalled.

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War Criminal Joseph Ratzinger, aka Pope Benedict, Seeks Immunity and Protection

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 20, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From War Is Crime

International Tribunal calls on Napolitano to “not collude in criminality”, and announces global campaign to occupy Vatican property and launch human rights inquiry in Italy

ROME, February 14, 2013 — Pope Benedict, Joseph Ratzinger, has scheduled a meeting with Italian President Giorgio Napolitano for Saturday, February 23 to discuss securing protection and immunity from prosecution from the Italian government, according to Italian media sources.

Ratzinger’s meeting follows upon the apparent receipt by the Vatican of a diplomatic note from an undisclosed European government on February 4, stating its intention to issue an arrest warrant for Ratzinger, who resigned from his pontificate less than a week later.

In response to the February 23 meeting, the International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State (ITCCS), through its field Secretary, Rev. Kevin Annett, has written to President Napolitano, asking him to refrain from assisting Ratzinger in evading justice.

The ITCCS letter states, in part,

 

“I need not remind you, Mr. President, that under international law and treaties that have been ratified by Italy, you and your government are forbidden from granting such protection to those like Joseph Ratzinger who have aided and abetted criminal actions, such as ordering Bishops and Cardinals in America and elsewhere to protect known child rapists among their clergy.

“Your obligation to the Vatican through the Lateran Treaty does not negate or nullify the requirements of these higher moral and international laws; nor does it require that you give any protection or immunity to a single individual like Joseph Ratzinger, especially after he has left his papal office.”

 

A copy of the complete text of the ITCCS letter follows.

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UN Investigates US Drone Attacks

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 28, 2013 by Spartan of Truth

From Opinion Maker

By Chris Woods and Alice K Ross

Emmerson press conference - copyright Bureau of Investigative Journalism 2013Ben Emmerson QC addresses reporters in London (Photo: TBIJ)A UN investigation into the legality and casualties of drone strikes has been formally launched, with a leading human rights lawyer revealing the team that will carry out the inquiry.The announcement came as the latest reported US drone strike in Yemen was said to have mistakenly killed two children.Ben Emmerson QC, the UN’s special rapporteur on human rights and counter-terrorism, told a London press conference that he will lead a group of international specialists who will examine CIA and Pentagon covert drone attacks in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia.The team will also look at drone strikes by US and UK forces in Afghanistan, and by Israel in the Occupied Territories. In total some 25 strikes are expected to be examined in detail.The senior British barrister will work alongside international criminal lawyers, a senior Pakistani judge and one of the UK’s leading forensic pathologists, as well as experts from Pakistan and Yemen. Also joining the team is a serving judge-advocate with the US military ‘who is assisting the inquiry in his personal capacity.’Emmerson told reporters: ’Those states using this technology and those on whose territory it is used are under an international law obligation to establish effective independent and impartial investigations into any drone attack in which it is plausibly alleged that civilian casualties were sustained.’

But in the absence of such investigations by the US and others, the UN would carry out investigations ‘in the final resort’, he said.

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