Archive | April 24th, 2015

Zio-Wahhabi Congratulates the Zionist regime

NOVANEWS
Armed goups in Syria collaborate with the Zionist entity 

Zio-Wahhabi groups operating in Syria revealed its collaboration with the scheme of the Zio-Nazi entity by sending a letter of congratulation to the occupation authorities, Zionist media reported Thursday.

In the letter published on the Zionist Maariv newspaper, the so-called ‘The Free People of Syria’ armed Zio-Wahhabi takfiri group unfolded its espionage for the Zionist regime.

“We congratulate the great state of Israel and its honorable people on the 67 anniversary of its independence,” the letter said.

Instead of wishing the Arabs to be united and Palestine to be liberated, the group wished to celebrate the anniversary of stealing and occupying Palestine inside the Zionist embassy in Syria.

“We hope that next year we will celebrate this great occasion in the embassy of Israel inside Damascus, after liberating it from the axis of evil that is ignited by Iran and its allies in the region,” the lette, signed by Zio-Wahhabi Moussa Ahmad al-Nabhan, chairman of the political bureau and foreign relations of the group, added.

Nabhan thanked the Zionist leadership for “its appreciated humanitarian position towards the Syrian revolution,” adding that the free Syrian people will not forget any country that stood by their side.

“This [Syrian] people were waiting for the opportunity to make special relations with the neighboring Israelis,” he added.

May 14 marks the declaration of Balfour Promise which stated that Britain, the then mandate force over Palestine, would grant the land of holy Palestine for free to the Zionist movement founded by the Jewish Theodor Herzl, to establish a national homeland for Jews.

On May 15, the establishment of the so-called ‘state of Israel’ was declared under the sponsorship of the United Kingdom.

Nabhan ended up his letter wishing for what he called “the state of Israel, its leadership, and its people the best wishes of health, happiness, prosperity, and success,” reiterating his hope to celebrate the “occasion” next year in the Zionist embassy in Damascus.

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Yemen: Zio-Wahhabi fighter jets still bombing

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Smoke rises in the Yemeni capital Sanaa
Smoke rises in the Yemeni capital Sanaa
Zio-Wahhabi-led coalition fighter jets continued to target many areas across Yemen on Wednesday, despite Riyadh’s last night declaration that it has ended military operations against the Southern neighbor.

Zio-Wahhabi warplanes resumed their air raids on Yemen on Wednesday, hitting the central prison in Taiz city, while reports from Sana’a and Saada said heavy bombings by the Zio-Wahhabi-led coalition continued since this morning.

“We see the security of the region and as the security of the Islamic Republic of Iran and will show strong reaction to any move that complicates the situation no matter its done by Saudi Arabia or any other actor,” Amir Abdollahian told the state-run TV.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran believes that all efforts, particularly those by the United Nations, should be guided, in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations and fundamental principles of international humanitarian law, by the following objectives:

1. Ceasefire and an immediate end to all foreign military attacks;

2. Unimpeded urgent humanitarian and medical assistance to the people of Yemen;

3. Resumption of Yemeni-lead and Yemeni-owned national dialogue, with the participation of the representatives of all political parties and social groups;

4. Establishment of an inclusive national unity government,” Zarif said in his letter.

Despite Riyadh’s claims that it was bombing the positions of the Ansarullah fighters, Zio-Wahhabi  warplanes were flattening residential areas and civilian infrastructures.

 

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Yemen: At least 115 children killed

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The UN agency said another 26 children had been killed by unexploded ordnance and mines, 19 by gunshots, three by shelling and three by “unverified causes related to the conflict”. -AFP/File
The UN agency said another 26 children had been killed by unexploded ordnance and mines, 19 by gunshots, three by shelling and three by “unverified causes related to the conflict”. -AFP/File

At least 115 children have been killed and 172 maimed in the violence raging in Yemen since Zio-Wahhabi-led air strikes began on March 26, the UN children’s agency Unicef said Friday.

“We believe that these are conservative figures,” Unicef spokesman Christophe Boulierac told reporters in Geneva, saying at least 64 of the children killed between March 26 and April 20 were victims of air strikes.

The UN agency said another 26 children had been killed by unexploded ordnance and mines, 19 by gunshots, three by shelling and three by “unverified causes related to the conflict”. 71 of the children died in the north of the country, Unicef said.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) said Thursday the overall death toll in Yemen had topped 1,000, and the UN’s human rights agency said Friday at least 551 of the people who died were civilians. Meanwhile, Unicef said that since March 26, at least 140 children had been recruited by armed groups.

Also read: UN chief calls for immediate ceasefire in Yemen

“There are hundreds of thousands of children in Yemen who continue to live in the most dangerous circumstances, many waking up scared in the middle of the night to the sounds of bombing and gunfire,” Unicef representative in Yemen Julien Harneis said in a statement.

“The number of child casualties shows clearly how devastating this conflict continues to be for the country’s children,” he said.

Read: Yemen rebels demand complete end to attacks, seek talks

Houthi rebels on Wednesday demanded a complete end to attacks by  Zio-Wahhabi-led coalition and sought United Nations-sponsored talks, a day after the coalition declared an end to the first phase of its operations.

Yesterday, rival forces fought on in Yemen despite a declared halt to Zio-Wahhabi-led bombing campaign, showing how tough it may be to find a political solution to a war stirring animosities between rival Gulf powers Zio-Wahhabi family and Iran.

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Zio-Wahhabi Claims ‘Operation Over

NOVANEWS

But Bombs Keep Falling On Yemen

Shelling was reported in central and southern cities, and ground fighting has not let up.
Image result for ISIS FLAG
Zio-Wahhabi Flag
Saudi soldiers are seen through a tent positioned at the Saudi border with Yemen in Jazan, Saudi Arabia, Monday, April 20, 2015. The Saudi air campaign in Yemen is now in its fourth week.

Just hours after declaring the conclusion of “Operation Decisive Storm,” Saudi Arabia resumed air strikes against Yemen on Wednesday, signaling that the four-month bombing campaign and violence, which has already killed at least 944 people, is not yet over.

Media outlets report that a Saudi air strike hit the southern port city of Aden on Wednesday, in addition to bombings in the central city of Taiz, following heavy fighting.

Ground fighting between rebel combatants and forces aligned with Yemen’s government continued in Aden, and clashes are also reported in Taiz, Huta, and Daleh, leaving an unknown number of people dead and wounded, according to AFP.

People in Yemen, who have taken to social media to vividly document the war’s impact on their lives, confirmthat the fighting and shelling has not let up.

However, the statement, which was publicly embraced by U.S. and Iranian officials, left numerous unanswered questions.

In the same announcement, Saudi Arabia said it is embarking on the newly-branded “Operation Restoration of Hope,” which would aim in part to combat “terrorism,” but it is not immediately clear what this campaign entails or whether Saudi Arabia plans to halt the bombings for a sustained period of time.

The government declared that Saudi Arabia has the right to “counter any military moves by the Houthis or their allies, and deal with any threat against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia or its neighbors.”

Furthermore, it was not apparent whether Saudi Arabia’s announcement on Tuesday signals relief for Yemenis impacted by the humanitarian crisis gripping the country, fueled by bombings and fighting, as well as a Saudi-led siege that has prevented humanitarian aid, food, and water from reaching people in need as supplies run dangerously low.

In a statement released following Saudi Arabia’s announcement on Tuesday, Oxfam called for all parties to allow aid through. Oxfam’s facility storing vital humanitarian aid in the northern governate of Saada was bombed by Saudi-led forces, despite the fact that the organization provided detailed information about the location of the facility to the coalition, which includes the United States, Kuwait, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Jordan, Egypt, Sudan, and Morocco.

“Oxfam, alongside our partners, stands ready to respond to these needs and plans to reach as many of these people as we can,” said Grace Ommer, Oxfam’s Country Director for Yemen. “To help us and others do that that we call on all parties to the conflict to re-open land, sea and air routes into the country immediately in order to allow essential food, fuel and humanitarian provisions to reach those in desperate need.”

Meanwhile, an apparent overnight U.S. drone strike on the southern port city of Mukalla killed at least six people, witnesses said on Wednesday, according to AFP.

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The School Of The Americas Is Still Exporting Death Squads

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South American militaries have been sending soldiers to the U.S. for “ethics” and “human rights” training for years, but history shows that many of these alumni go on to become notorious torturers and murderers, not defenders of peace.
School of the Americas

RABAT, Malta — In 2009, just a year before Sebastián Piñera became president of Chile, Michelle Bachelet approved the training of 211 Chilean recruits at the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC), formerly known as the School of the Americas (SOA).

Between 1999 and 2010, Chilean governments sent a total of 1,205 recruits to the school, with Bachelet remaining at the helm of cooperation with the U.S.-based institute that has graduated scores of alumni involved in human rights violations under Chile’s dictatorship era from 1973 to 1990.

Despite the macabre reality inflicted upon Chileans during Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship, the Concertación governments of the center-left, allegedly embarking upon a democratic future for Chile, retained ties with the school that produced torturers such as Miguel Krassnoff Martchenko, who, according to torture survivors, never concealed his identity while subjecting his victims to brutality.

Bachelet’s father, Gen. Alberto Bachelet, who was loyal to socialist president Salvador Allende, was tortured to death by the Dirección de Inteligencia Nacional (the National Intelligence Directorate, also known as DINA). Bachelet herself was detained and tortured by DINA, later fleeing into exile and returning back to Chile in 1979.

Under Bachelet’s first presidency (2006-2010), Chilean cooperation with the U.S. expanded, especially following her one-year stay at Fort Lesley J. McNair, in Washington, D.C., which provided the prelude to Bachelet’s military and surveillance investment. Socialism quickly eroded into opportunism, with the country’s first female president emphasizing Pinochet’s legacy of oblivion as she extended diplomatic maneuvers to former DINA torturers, even praising generals allegedly involved in the torture that contributed to her father’s death.

Piñera also sent recruits to train at WHINSEC and furthered U.S. military collaboration in 2012 by opening a military training center at Fort Aguayo in Concón, Chile.

 

From the SOA to WHINSEC

Established in 1946 in Panama, the SOA was responsible for training over 64,000 South American soldiers, many of whom later became notorious torturers and murderers in death squads. According to former Panamanian President Jorge Illueca, the SOA was the “biggest base for destabilization in Latin America.”

Expelled from Panama in 1984, the SOA relocated to Fort Benning, Georgia, and was renamed WHINSEC in 2001, allowing for an apparent termination of the previous program through dissociation. In reality, however, WHINSEC retained its SOA foundations and the U.S. Department of Defense has shielded the institute from criticism and outcry with regard to the school’s historical link to human rights violations.

In its mission statement, WHINSEC claims to have been founded upon the Charter of the Organization of American States and pledges to “foster mutual knowledge, transparency, confidence, and cooperation among the participating nations and promote democratic values, respect for human rights, and knowledge and understanding of U.S. customs and traditions.”

These values, according to WHINSEC’s website, are imparted through a three-lesson Ethics Program, as well as the Democracy and Human Rights Program — the latter dealing with “the universal prohibitions against torture, extrajudicial executions and forced disappearances.”

 

A far cry from protecting human rights

CIA and U.S. Army manuals detailing torture techniques translated into Spanish and utilized by the SOA are afar cry from anything containing human rights protections. Indeed, as SOA Watch explains, “These manuals advocated torture, extortion, blackmail and the targeting of civilian populations.”

The manuals, written in the 1950s and 1960s, “were distributed for use in countries such as El Salvador, Guatemala, Ecuador and Peru, and at the School of the Americas between 1987 and 1991.” Indeed, in-depth research and testimony from torture survivors relay more than just a depiction of torture practiced by SOA graduates in South America during dictatorship eras, such as Chile under Pinochet. Sadistic torture practiced upon detainees at Abu Ghraib is also reflective of the CIA torture manuals and torture previously carried out on detainees in South America.

Since 2000 and the renaming of the SOA, other crimes linked to SOA graduates have come to light.

Col. Byron Lima Estrada was convicted in June 2001 of murdering Guatemalan Bishop Juan Jose Gerardi following the publication of a report insisting the Guatemalan army was responsible for the murder of almost 200,000 people in the civil war that took place from 1960 to 1996.

Two SOA graduates, Venezuelan Army Commander in Chief Efrain Vasquez and Gen. Ramirez Poveda, were involved in the failed 2002 coup against President Hugo Chávez. According to SOA Watch, Otto Reich, then-assistant secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, was “appointed as a WHINSEC board of visitor member to ‘oversee’ democracy and human rights curriculum, as well as operations at the school.” Reich was also deeply involved in the planning of the coup against Chávez.

In 1999, Bolivian Captain Filiman Rodriguez had been found responsible for the kidnapping and torture of Waldo Albarracin, director of the Bolivian Popular Assembly of Human Rights. In 2002, Rodriguez was accepted for a 49-week officer training course at WHINSEC.

In May 2014, a detailed report by the Fellowship of Reconciliation and Colombia-Europe-U.S. Human Rights Observatory highlighted U.S. military assistance to Colombia between 2000 and 2010. According to the report, which studies extrajudicial killings committed by the Colombian Army Brigades, U.S. intelligence assistance to Colombia “supported units that had adopted a strategy conducive to extrajudicial killings.”

Colombia requires its officers to undergo training at WHINSEC. The 2014 report states that out of 25 Colombian graduates from 2001 to 2003, 12 had either been charged with “a serious crime or commanded units whose members had reportedly committed multiple extrajudicial killings.”

It should be remembered that Plan Colombia, signed by U.S. President Bill Clinton, was translated into “moral and political support” by Colombian Gen. Mario Montoya. Between 2000 and 2010, U.S. assistance was considered a factor which influenced the staggering total of 5,673 extrajudicial killings — all of which occurred with impunity, lack of judicial mechanisms, rewards for the murders and the role of national leaders such as Montoya providing a safety net for those complicit in the atrocities.

As regards WHINSEC in Colombia, an academic on the Board of Visitors is quoted in the report as stating, “So if a student of mine leaves an ethics class and engages in criminal activity does that make me or my university liable for her activity?”

This attitude summarizes the lack of accountability surrounding WHINSEC. The dissociation from the school’s history under its original name — the SOA — is merely a premise for distancing the institution from the atrocities committed by its students and graduates.

History, however, tells a different story. While WHINSEC continues to emphasize what it describes as a commitment to human rights by citing a mere eight hours of instruction in the subject, research, such as the report on Colombia’s extrajudicial killings, reveals a reality that goes beyond the cosmetic reforms employed by the institution.

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Land and Resource Grabs: The World Bank’s Long War on Peasants

NOVANEWS
Global Research
medium_land_grabs_honduras.jpg_1718483346

Members of the Peasant Unified Movement of Bajo Aguán, Honduras, carry mock coffins bearing pictures of people murdered in land clashes during a demonstration in Tegucigalpa. (Photo: AFP)

“The corporate revolution will collapse if we refuse to buy what they are selling — their ideas, their version of history, their wars, their weapons, their notion of inevitability.” – Arundhati Roy, War Talk     

Founded at the historical seam between World War II and the birth of the Cold War, the World Bank’s purpose — then as now — is to spread capitalism across the globe. Correspondingly, it has long promoted capitalist agriculture, alongside other rural extractive industries, at the expense of peasant, indigenous, and community-based food systems. And while the Bank’s interest in farming has waxed and waned over its more than six decades, in recent years it has shown a renewed interest in the importance of agriculture. Critics, however, point to the Bank’s complicity in a new feverish wave of global land grabs. And peasants around the world refuse to buy the World Bank’s notion of their inevitable demise.

The Green Revolution as Massive Global Land Grab

In its early years (1940s-1960s), while the World Bank financed rural infrastructure like large dams, it mostly ignored agriculture. Not until the 1970s did Bank President Robert McNamara (1968-81) call for investments in agriculture. Following his tenure as Secretary of Defense of the United States, during which Vietnamese peasants routed U.S. forces in Southeast Asia, he became keenly aware of agriculture’s geopolitical importance. Under McNamara the World Bank partnered with the Rockefeller Foundation to massively expand the Green Revolution, which entailed transferring U.S.-style industrial agriculture to the global South through debt-financed programs and infrastructure.

The Green Revolution spread rapidly throughout Asia and Latin America (it was mostly a failure in Africa), with dramatic increases in agricultural production. From 1970 to 1990, the two decades of major Green Revolution expansion, the total food available per person in the world rose by 11 percent. The benefits of this model, however, were poorly distributed and introduced profound social and environmental problems — arguably leading to more hunger, not less. In South America, for instance, per capita food supplies rose almost 8 percent, but the number of hungry people went up by 19 percent in the same period.

High-yielding crop varieties demanded high levels of chemical inputs and required fertile, irrigable land that could be mechanized. As a result, poor farmers were displaced from the best lands as wealthier farmers took advantage of new credit opportunities and input packages and expanded their landholdings. Millions of rural people migrated to the cities in search of work or sought out precarious farming opportunities on poor soils and fragile hillsides, joining the ranks of the poor and hungry.

The Neoliberal Turn and the Mounting Crisis 

By the late 1980s, funding for agricultural development withered. The World Bank abandoned the state-led, debt-financed Green Revolution model as part of the larger shift to gut public institutions and put “development” in the hands of the private sector. In a reversal of early Green Revolution logic, the Bank enthusiastically supported the idea that poor countries should buy food from transnational corporations on the global market rather than grow it themselves.

It is difficult to overstate the degree to which the International Monetary Fund and World Bank-promoted cocktail of liberalization, deregulation, and privatization contributed to extreme vulnerability for farmers and peasants. First, it turned mostly self-sufficient agricultural economies into import-dependent ones. Second, it removed safety nets small farmers had long relied upon while abruptly forcing them to compete with imports from industrialized countries like the United States. And third, it made it easier for wealthy investors — both foreign and domestic — to access land and resources without adequately protecting human rights and rural livelihoods.

This tinderbox of vulnerability detonated in 2007 when global food prices spiked and food riots broke out around the world. Between 2007 and 2008, the world’s hungry jumped from 850 to 982 million people — mostly peasants and small farmers. World Bank President Robert Zoellick called for a “New Deal for a Global Food Policy” announcing, among other things, new loans for governments to purchase seeds, fertilizers, and irrigation improvements. Two decades of ignoring and defunding agriculture, it seemed, were drawing to a close—a suspicion confirmed when the Bank released its first comprehensive report on agriculture in 25 years: the 2008 World Development Report: Agriculture for Development.

But the Bank’s old, stale assumptions lingered; namely, that peasants should either get big (become large-scale commercial farmers) or get out of agriculture altogether. The implied prescription is yet another massive transfer of land and resources away from the world’s 2.5 billion peasants to large capitalist firms, while remaining agnostic about the fate of this mass of people — roughly one-third of humanity. 1,000 World Bank projects approved between 2004 and 2013 forced 3.4 million people from their homes, grabbed their land, or damaged their livelihood.

The World Bank in the “New” Land and Resource Grabs 

Looking at the Bank’s history and guiding assumptions, it is unsurprising to find it heavily implicated in what some are calling the “new” land and resource grabs. Sparked in part by the 2007-2008 food and financial crisis, a global wave of largely speculative investments and dispossession has affected upwards of 86 million hectares of land worldwide (with some estimates as high as 227 million hectares). The Bank facilitates these land grabs in a number of interrelated ways: low-interest loans to agribusiness and other land-based industries; investment guarantees and insurance; loans to governments for investor-friendly infrastructure like roads and dams; and technical advice on how to reform regulatory regimes to attract foreign investment.

Beyond agriculture, these activities support a whole slew of industries that restructure the countryside as a site of dirty extraction and capital accumulation instead of community health and wellbeing. These include timber, mining, fisheries, tourism, energy, and plantation agriculture (including agrofuels) — industries that either expel peasants from their territories or contaminate the land and water they depend on. Of course, once rendered poor and landless, former peasants are enlisted as cheap labor for the very industries that uprooted them. This, for the World Bank, is what constitutes “job creation” and “development.”

Many cases of land grabbing occur in countries with political instability and weak governance with regard to monitoring and regulating land deals—largely due to over two decades of World Bank-promoted structural adjustments that decimated government capacity. For instance, human rights and environmental activists have heavily criticized the Bank for promoting the expansion of mining in places like Haiti, where it has been assisting the government since 2013 in drafting new mining laws intended to attract foreign investment to a high-risk industry without applying social or environmental standards, transparency, or consultation mechanisms.

Perhaps the most egregious cases of World Bank-facilitated land grabbing have occurred under the auspices of the Bank’s private sector lending arm, the International Finance Corporation (IFC). The IFC recently came under fire for a US$30 million loan package to the Dinant Corporation in Honduras, associated with the illegitimate acquisition of peasant lands for palm oil production and the killings of local community members. Half of the loan was disbursed to Dinant only four months after a military coup, supported by the country’s landowning and business elite, threw the country into political turmoil, which including heavy repression targeting peasant communities.

Further, a new report by Oxfam details the IFC’s increasing use of third parties, such as banks or private equity funds, to channel development money that amounted to US$36 billion between 2009 and 2013, or 62 percent of IFC spending. This allows the IFC to distance itself from development outcomes such as human rights abuses, environmental impacts, and displacement.

Remarkably, the Bank doesn’t keep even basic statistics on the number of people displaced by its projects. A review of the Bank’s “Involuntary Resettlement” program completed in mid-2014 revealed that the status of displaced people was unknown for 61 percent of sampled Bank-funded projects. Based on this inadequate data, the Bank estimates that half a million people have been displaced due to its 218 active projects — with no clear idea of how many of those received compensation or new land. A separate 11-month investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists found that 1,000 World Bank projects approved between 2004 and 2013 forced 3.4 million people from their homes, grabbed their land, or damaged their livelihood.

While Bank president Jim Yong Kim stated that “additional efforts must be made to build capacity and safeguards related to land rights,” a leaked draft of new World Bank social and environmental safeguards showed just the opposite. Most shockingly, notes a statement endorsed by over 100 human rights organizations and experts, “The draft framework provides an opt-out option for governments who do not wish to provide essential land and natural resource rights protections to Indigenous Peoples within their States. This regressive clause, if adopted, would represent a wink and nod by the World Bank to governments that they should not feel compelled to respect international human rights law, and can violate the fundamental right to land, territories, and resources…”

Peasants vs. The World Bank 

Much has changed since the World Bank was founded in 1944. In spite of rising hunger, wealth inequality, and land concentration, there has been a remarkable growth in peasant mobilizations around the world — perhaps most notably the international peasant confederation La Via Campesina now comprising over 150 member organizations in 70 countries representing some 300 million farmers. Each year on April 17, La Via Campesina recognizes the International Day of Peasant Struggle in recognition of 19 peasant members of Brazil’s Landless Workers Movement (MST) who were assassinated by large landowners and military on April 17, 1996. This year, peasants mobilize specifically against transnational companies and free trade agreements, watchwords of the World Bank’s longstanding development model and weapons in its ongoing war on peasants. As La Via Campesina celebrates its hard-fought struggle for food sovereignty, agroecology, and the right to land with actions around the world, it reminds us that farmers and peasants refuse to buy the Bank’s notion of their inevitable disappearance.

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The Refugee Crisis: How NATO Kills Africans in the Club Med

NOVANEWS
Global Research
CongoRefugees

Humanitarian imperialism as applied to what the Pentagon loves to define as MENA (Middle East-Northern Africa) has led, according to Amnesty International, “to the largest refugee disaster since the Second World War.” 

You all remember that NATO/AFRICOM coalition of the willing, “led” by King Sarko the First, then President of France, with US President Barack Obama “leading from behind” and a former Secretary of State, now presidential candidate with a campaign chest of $2.5 billion, coining a gloating “We came, we saw, he died”.

Well, this fabulous collection of humanitarian imperialists is still on the loose, now killing — by proxy — across the waters of the Mediterranean, aka Club Med, aka Mare Nostrum, after they destroyed a viable state — Libya, a secular Arab republic — under the pretext of preventing a “genocide”.

Asked about it today, as he recently pontificated in relation to the Armenian genocide, that pathetic excuse for UN Secretary-General, Ban-Ki Moon, would say the potential massacre in Libya might — and the operative word is “might” — not even qualify as an “atrocity crime.” The six-month humanitarian bombing of Libya engineered to prevent a highly hypothetical “atrocity crime” ended up “liberating” at least 10 times more people from their lives than the previous skirmishes between Col. Gaddafi’s troops and weaponized “rebels”, most of them hardcore Islamist militias, now free to wreak jihadi havoc from eastern Libya to northern Syria.

Humanitarian imperialism practitioners duly created a “liberated” wasteland — which they called “victory” — trespassed by weaponized militias; installed a pervasive chaos trespassing a great deal of the Maghreb and Western Africa; and unleashed a massive humanitarian crisis.

Stranded in MENA

Humanitarian imperialism as applied to what the Pentagon loves to define as MENA (Middle East-Northern Africa) — from Libya to Iraq, Syria and now Yemen, as well as sub-proxy wars in Mali, Somalia and Sudan — has led, according to Amnesty International, “to the largest refugee disaster since the Second World War.” Amnesty estimates that no less than 57 million people have been turned into refugees by 2014.

A crucial subplot is that according to the International Organization on Migration (IOM), the number of refugees dying as they tried to reach Fortress Europe rose by more than 500 percent between 2011 and 2014.

This means humanitarian imperialism, as applied by the Pentagon/NATO/AFRICOM, handed the waters of the Club Med to the real winners: a vast human trafficking racket that includes smugglers, corrupt police and even “terra-rists”.

Across Europe, only Italy — to its credit — is really outraged, and willing to accept at least a fraction, a few really, of the wretched African boat people. After all, the privileged exit point is “liberated” Libya and the privileged entry point is Italy’s Sicily. France, Germany, the UK and Sweden follow Italy with much more modest attempts.

This aphasiac EU/NATO wall of silence is due to the fact that Europe now is mostly about anti-immigration political parties running amok. After all would-be immigrants are perfect scapegoats. As fearful “nationalists” define them, they flatten wages; they live off welfare; they are mostly criminals; they reproduce like rabbits; they destroy the “national identity; and of course there are so many “terra-rists” among them who want to submit Europe to the chador and Sharia law.

This fearful, austerity-ravaged EU subjugated by NATO’s military diktats cannot possibly muster the will to build a common, decent policy to confront the tragedy of a Club Med putrified by a tsunami of African bodies. A great deal of the EU in fact suspended Operation Mare Nostrum — opting to control/police the borders of Fortress Europe instead of acting on humanitarian principles.

Call the drone cavalry

A modest proposal would involve bombing smuggling boats in their hideaways before they are filled up with their tragic human cargo; under UN protection, establish in the “liberated” Libyan coastline humanitarian stations able to process those eligible for political asylum in the EU; facilitate their air or naval travel to the nations ready to receive them; or — using American methodology — drone the “enemy” to smithereens, as in the smugglers and their financiers. After all US drones are expert in the matter, operating under Obama’s infamous “kill list” and totally oblivious to international law.

That, though, will never happen. As Nick Turse demonstrates in a new, path-breaking book, Libya was merely AFRICOM’s first war (then transferred to NATO, as I examined here); the Pentagon has much nastier plans in its evolving pivoting to Africa.

Meanwhile, those fabulously wealthy oil and gas rackets in the Persian Gulf — the same ones buying every ostentatious sign of luxury between Paris and London — are busy “creating” the bulk of the largest refugee crisis since World War II: in Syria, a privileged theatre of their proxy war against Iran.And the House of Saud oil hacienda — with the Empire of Chaos “leading from behind” but providing the bombs, the fighter jets, the intel, and the escalation, via nine US warships dispatched to Yemeni waters — is also busy prosecuting its bombastic “Decisive Storm” over the poorest Arab nation, setting the scene for yet another chapter of the rolling refugee crisis.

NATO remains busy training Kiev’s goons; demonizing Russia generates much more PR than dealing with Africans.

In Afghanistan, the Taliban have already announced their new spring offensive starts this Friday; NATO, whose collective behind was royally spanked by a few thousand Taliban with fake Kalashnikovs, won’t be even “leading from behind”.

And at the bottom of the Mare Nostrum lies, in full putrefied regalia, the EU/NATO’s civilized corpse.

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Yemen’s Shiite Rebels Are Not Iran Proxies: US Intelligence Officials

NOVANEWS
Global Research
map-yemen

American intelligence officials have cautioned against the popular narrative that Yemen’s Shiite rebels are proxies or Iran, noting that Tehran actually counseled them against conquering Yemeni capitalSana’a last year. Known as Houthis, the group formally calls itself Ansar Allah (Supporters of God) and consists almost exclusively of Zaidi tribesmen, who follow an obscure form of Shia Islam. Their denomination, which distinguishes them from Yemen’s Sunni majority, shapes their ethnic identity and has helped fuel their 20-year insurgency against the Yemeni state. In September of last year, Houthi rebels, taking advantage of the chaos caused by the spillover of the Arab Spring into Yemen, marched into Sana’a, which had been virtually abandoned by the government’s security forces, and took it over.

The surprising move caused many in the Middle East to accuse Iran, whose Shiite government maintains strong religious and ideological connections with Yemen’s Zaidi community, of using the Houthis as a proxy army in order to destabilize Saudi Arabia’s southern regions. The latter are also populated by Shiite tribes, who are ethnically affiliated with the Houthis and view Iran as a kind of spiritual homeland. In Washington, the alleged Iranian link to the Houthi insurgency has been pointed to repeatedly by lawmakers opposed to the recent agreement between the Islamic Republic and a group of nations that have come to be known as P5+1, representing the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany. The lawmakers argue that, while nominally agreeing to end its nuclear program, Tehran has been secretly conspiring to destabilize the entire Arabian Peninsula.

However, a report in online news agency The Huffington Post said on Monday that American intelligence officials are far from convinced that Iran is actually directing the Houthi insurgency. Citing “American officials familiar with intelligence” operations in Yemen, the New York-based news agency said Iran actively opposed the Houthis’ advance on the Yemeni capital in September of last year, and tried to prevent it. The Houthis, however, simply ignored Tehran’s advice and took over Sana’a. The Huffington Post quotes one unnamed American intelligence official who says that “it is wrong to think of the Houthis as a proxy force of Iran”. The article also quotes Bernadette Meehan, spokeswoman for the United States National Security Council, who says that “it remains [the NSC’s] assessment that Iran does not exertcommand and control over the Houthis in Yemen”.

If it is accurate, the US intelligence assessment would mean that Tehran is far more interested in promoting its agreement with the P5+1 than commandeering a proxy war in Yemen. Additionally, those who suggest that Yemen’s Houthis are guided by Iran appear to ignore the fact that the Zaidis follow a branch of Shiite Islam that differs markedly from Iran’s. Knowledgeable observers have pointed out that the Houthi insurgency is far more concerned with combatting local government corruption and having a say in the country’s internal power struggles than promoting Shiite Islam in Yemen and beyond.

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Zio-Wahhabi ”ISIL” Supported by Saudi Arabia and I$raHell

NOVANEWS

Iraqi Volunteers Find I$raHell Weapons in ISIL Position. ISIL Supported by Zio-Wahhabi regime and I$raHell

Global Research
Iraqi-Volunteer-Forces

Iraqi volunteer forces, Hashid Shaabi, found Israeli-made weapons in a position of the Zio-Wahhabi terrorists in Anbar province on Thursday.

According to Al-Mayadeen television, the Iraqi volunteer forces found I$raHell-made weapons in an Zio-Wahhabi ISIL position in al-Karmah city in Anbar province.

Zio-Wahhabi ISIL Takfiri terrorists currently control shrinking swathes of Syria and Iraq. They have threatened all communities, including Shiites, Sunnis, Kurds, Christians, Ezadi Kurds and others, as they continue their atrocities in Iraq.

Senior Iraqi officials have blamed Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and some Persian Gulf Arab states for the growing terrorism in their country.

Zio-WahhabI ISIL has links with Saudi intelligence and is believed to be indirectly supported by Zio-Nazi regime.

 

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Dutch Lawsuit Charges Crimes Against Humanity During Egyptian Massacres

NOVANEWS
Global Research
the-minister-of-interior-mohamed-ibrahim-egypte-e

On July 3, 2013, the Egyptian military staged a coup’etat and deposed the democratically elected government of President Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood. Thousands of Egyptians staged demonstrations throughout Egypt to show support for Morsi.

One month later, the Egyptian army and police carried out several massacres in Cairo, killing hundreds of unarmed protesters. Authorities mounted a military response to largely peaceful protests by supporters of the Brotherhood against the illegitimate Egyptian government. Although aimed primarily at the Brotherhood, the crackdown included other political opposition groups and individuals.

Four Dutch citizens of Egyptian origin, who were present during three of the most brutal massacres in summer 2013, filed a petition in the Netherlands that charged Egyptian Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim with crimes against humanity. In September 2014, the Dutch law firm of Seebregts & Saey submitted a formal request to the Dutch prosecutor to prosecute Ibrahim. Dutch criminal courts have jurisdiction under the International Crimes Act when a Dutch national has been the victim of a crime. Due to head of state immunity, the lawsuit did not name Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who ordered the Rab’a massacre when he was Defense Minister.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) undertook a one-year investigation into the conduct of security forces responding to the demonstrations. In its report titled “All According to Plan: The Rab’a Massacre and Mass Killings of Protesters in Egypt,” HRW concluded, “police and army forces systematically and intentionally used excessive lethal force in their policing, resulting in killings of protesters on a scale unprecedented in Egypt.” HRW also determined

“the killings not only constituted serious violations of international human rights law, but likely amounted to crimes against humanity, given both their widespread and systematic nature and the evidence suggesting the killings were part of a policy to attack unarmed persons on political grounds.”

Although HRW was able to confirm that some protesters used firearms in a few instances, they did not justify “the grossly disproportionate and premeditated lethal attacks on overwhelmingly peaceful protesters.”

The Rab’a Massacre

There were over 20,000 protesters in Rab’a Square. In what HRW called “the gravest incident of mass protester killings,” Egyptian police, snipers and military personnel opened fire on unarmed demonstrators on August 14, 2013, “killing at least 817 and likely more than 1,000.” Security forces used live ammunition “with hundreds killed by bullets to their heads, necks, and chests.” Snipers fired from helicopters over Rab’a Square.

“Much of the shooting by police appears to have been indiscriminate,” HRW found, “openly firing in the general direction of crowds of demonstrators instead of targeting armed protester gunmen who may have posed a serious threat.”

The Rab’a mosque, which served as a refuge, particularly for women and children, “held so many corpses that it felt like it ‘had turned into a cemetery,’” one protester told HRW. An 18-year-old boy came into the hospital and said his stomach hurt. A doctor noted, “I looked down and his intestines were all out. He had taken several bullets and [later] died.” The doctor also reported that another person “took a bullet in the face, causing his face to open and tongue to fall out . . . He spent 40 minutes looking at me and gesturing for help, but I couldn’t do anything. Surgery was not possible.”

The deaths “amounted to collective punishment of the overwhelming majority of peaceful protesters,” HRW concluded.

One of the petitioners, who was present at the demonstration, was not wounded but people on his left and right were being shot. He was also present when the authorities set fire to the hospital on Rab’a Square, killing about 300 patients who were not able to leave.

Republican Guard Square

On July 7, 2013, about 2,000 Brotherhood supporters began a peaceful sit-in. Shortly before dawn on July 8, police and army units opened fire, targeting those in the protest and others emerging from prayers at the mosque. Authorities killed 61 protesters with live ammunition and injured 435. Most suffered gunshots to the head, neck and chest.

One of the petitioners was hit by a bullet, but survived.

Manassa Memorial

At least 95 protesters were killed on July 27, 2013. A field hospital doctor reported, “From 2 a.m. until 8:30 a.m. it was a steady stream; the bodies kept coming. Most had gunshot wounds in the head, neck or chest. The hospital was overflowing; we were completely over capacity.” Another field house doctor told HRW: “All of the dead were either dead on arrival or died immediately after they arrived, because of where they were hit; if you’re hit in the head or chest, you won’t last very long. The entire hospital floor was covered with injured people. It was beyond imagination.”

The two petitioners who were present at this demonstration were not wounded but were in danger of being hit. Others a short distance away were hit by bullets.

Crimes Against Humanity

Dutch law provides for sentences up to life in prison for convictions of crimes against humanity. The crime is defined as intentional killing or other inhumane acts of a comparable nature which intentionally cause severe suffering or severe physical or psychological damage, when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack against a civilian population pursuant to State policy.

HRW found that “security forces systematically and deliberately killed largely unarmed protesters on political grounds . . . in a widespread manner, resulting in the deaths of over 1,150 protesters, in July and August of 2013.”

HRW further concluded, “[t]he manner in which security forces used force to disperse protests appears to reflect policies set by the Egyptian government.” In fact, “the government anticipated and planned for the deaths of several thousand protesters.”

The Rab’a massacre was “executed pursuant to a plan formulated by the Interior Ministry and approved by the Cabinet and National Defense Council after three weeks of preparation,” HRW determined, citing statements of Ibrahim that he anticipated the dispersal would kill large numbers of demonstrators.

Ibrahim made public statements revealing he knew beforehand that many people would die during the police and military actions to end the demonstrations. The day after the Rab’a massacre, Ibrahim said “the dispersal plan succeeded 100 percent,” indicating that it adhered to a plan that had been put in place.

In a televised interview on August 31, 2013, Ibrahim confirmed that the Interior Ministry expected losses of “10 percent of the people,” adding, “you will find thousands lost from their side.”

“Abject politicization of justice’

HRW learned that “[s]ecurity forces detained over 800 protesters on August 14, 2013, some of whom they beat, tortured and in some cases summarily executed.”

On April 11, 2015, 51 Brotherhood supporters were convicted in a mass trial, based on the testimony of a single police officer. HRW said the evidence presented at the trial demonstrated that the men were disseminating news about and organizing peaceful protests in opposition to the military coup and removal of Morsi. Fourteen of the defendants were sentenced to death and the other 37 were given life sentences. According to Joe Stork, deputy Middle East and North Africa director of HRW, “The fact that people who covered and publicized the mass killings in 2013 could go to prison for life or be executed while the killers walk free captures the abject politicization of justice in Egypt.”

Morsi was convicted of charges including incitement to violence and torture from 2012 demonstrations that resulted in the deaths of 10 people outside the presidential palace. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

The Dutch lawsuit

The case against Ibrahim is under consideration by the Dutch prosecutor’s office. Should the prosecutor refuse to prosecute Ibrahim, the petitioners can request that the superior court in The Hague order the prosecutor to prosecute.

There has been no legal accountability for the massacres conducted by the Egyptian military government against the largely peaceful protesters. If high government officials in Egypt are permitted to commit crimes against humanity with impunity, it will encourage similar actions in the future – both in Egypt and elsewhere. Since there is little prospect for justice in Egypt itself, the Dutch lawsuit may be the only vehicle for accountability for these most serious crimes.

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