Tag: Amnesty International

“Will I Be Next?”

follow link Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Two recent reports on America’s drone wars reveal some very disturbing evidence that the use of drones is killing more civilians than the US wants to admit and that their use is a war crime. The report by Amnesty International (pdf) focused on the killing of Mamana Bibi, a 68 year old grandmother who was killed while picking vegetables in a field with her grandchildren in North Waziristan, Pakistan. A few minutes later a second strike injured family members trying to aid her. Amnesty International has stated that the drone strikes are unlawful amounting to war crimes or extrajudicial assassinations.

Based on rare access to North Waziristan, the region in Pakistan where most drone strikes have occurred, Amnesty International conducted detailed field research into nine drone strikes that occurred between January 2012 and August 2013 and which raise serious questions about violations of the right to life.

Among them is the October 2012 killing of 68-year old grandmother Mamana Bibi. She was killed in a double strike, apparently by a Hellfire missile, as she picked vegetables in the family’s fields and while surrounded by a handful of her grandchildren.

“We cannot find any justification for these killings,” said Mustafa Qadri, Amnesty International’s Pakistan Researcher. “There are genuine threats to the U.S. and its allies in the region, and drone strikes may be lawful in some circumstances. But it is hard to believe that a group of laborers, or a grandmother surrounded by her grandchildren, were endangering anyone at all, let alone posing an imminent threat to the United States.”

Amnesty International also documented cases of so-called “rescuer attacks” in which those who ran to the aid of the victims of an initial drone strike were themselves targeted in a follow-on attack. In a July 2012 case, 18 laborers, including 14-year-old Saleh Khan, were killed in multiple strikes on an impoverished village close to the border with Afghanistan as they were about to enjoy an evening meal at the end of a long day of work. Witnesses described a macabre scene of body parts and blood, panic and terror, as U.S. drones continued to hover overhead.

In addition to the threat of U.S. drone strikes, people in North Waziristan are frequently caught between attacks by armed groups and Pakistan’s armed forces. Al-Qa’ida-linked groups have killed dozens of local villagers they accused of being spies for U.S. drone strikes.

In the 97 page Human Rights Watch report (pdf), the focus was on drone strikes in Yemen between 2009 and 2013:

Two of the attacks killed civilians indiscriminately in clear violation of the laws of war; the others may have targeted people who were not legitimate military objectives or caused disproportionate civilian deaths.

“The US says it is taking all possible precautions during targeted killings, but it has unlawfully killed civilians and struck questionable military targets in Yemen,” said Letta Tayler, senior terrorism and counterterrorism researcher at Human Rights Watch and the author of the report. “Yemenis told us that these strikes make them fear the US as much as they fear Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.”

As with the unfettered surveillance program, this must be brought out of the shadows and a full accounting of the hundreds of civilians killed. Those responsible for their deaths must be held accountable and brought to justice.

Las Damas de Blanco now w Live Video link

follow site UPDATED with LIVE video at the Miami Herald.  Habla espanol?

http://maientertainmentlaw.com/?search=side-effects-lasix UPDATE 2: 6:45 PM ET… Gloria speaking now, both Spanish and English. Nice speech re freedom….

“we are here to honor the ladies in white who have walked peacefuly for the last 7 years to defend freedom…  white is the color of hope, of peace,…. Freedom belongs to every human being…. gracias…”

Her English not exactly same as the Spanish but my Spanish isnt that good…lol.

MSNBC just had a brief report on this News.

Gloria Estefan Leads Damas March Today

A march in support of Cuban peace activist group where to purchase sildenafil Las Damas de Blanco happens tonight at 6 p.m. in Calle Ocho, Miami Florida.

At 6 p.m., Gloria Estefan will lead a group of peaceful protestors in a march to support Las Damas de Blanco (Ladies in White), a group of wives and mothers whose relatives are in prison for opposing Fidel Castro’s government.

After the march, which will begin at Beacom Blvd. between 7th and 8th Streets and go from 22nd to 27th Avenues, Estefan is expected to thank participants, read a poem and sing the Cuban and U.S. national anthems.

Anyone participating is aked to where white and walk in silence. Shirts, which will be replicas of the ones used in Cuba by the Damas de Blanco, will also be made.

Who…?

10 Against Torture

Please support Amnesty International’s powerful new campaign urging President Obama to hold accountable those who have made torture our national policy.

The time to yell louder is now.

Below the fold, 10 renowned poets, activists, authors, interrogators, and torture victims have written their own letters to the President, and ask that you send one of these letters to the White House in their names.

~~~~~~

If you can’t Find the “Terrorists” — you can always Buy them!

http://cinziamazzamakeup.com/?x=prezzo-vardenafil-originale How Guantanamo’s prisoners were sold

The president of Pakistan’s [Pervez Musharraf] attempts to publicise his memoirs throw light on the flawed and dishonest processes that the US uses in bringing “terrorists” to justice

by Clive Stafford Smith – NewStatesman – 09 October 2006

The payments help us see why so many innocent prisoners ended up in Guantanamo Bay. order propecia Musharraf writes that “millions” were paid for 369 prisoners – the minimum rate was apparently $5,000, enough to tempt a poor Pakistani to shop an unwanted Arab to the Americans, gift-wrapped with a story that he was up to no good in Afghanistan.

cialis generico 10 mg online (emphasis added)

http://www.newstatesman.com/20…

I guess this is the True Meaning of Capitalism — if you can’t find the “bad guys” —  Buy Them!

More Confusion on Renditions: The Role of Ostensibly Liberal Bloggers

This diary explores the serious problems with the justifications for a limited, legal, and supposedly humane system of renditions to be run by the CIA (or other governmental agency). Such justifications would thus inform the review ordered by President Obama on interrogations and rendition in general.

In contradistinction to the views of Scott Horton, Glenn Greenwald, Andrew Sullivan, and TalkLeft’s Scribe, among others, I maintain that any program of extraordinary rendition, i.e., any extrajudicial abduction of a foreign citizen from foreign soil, violates international law. Furthermore, the liberal bloggers mentioned above have either ignored or downplayed or misrepresented that fact.

The issue seems to bring out a lot of passion, as it should. For one thing, it raises some criticisms of Obama and the left at a time when we are fighting the right-wing on the economy, torture, military policy, etc. But the torture/renditions issue goes to the heart of civilized international relations, and must not get lost in the shuffle. Please read on and certainly feel free to voice your comments. Substantive and respectful comments, even criticisms, are always appreciated.

How the Press, the Pentagon, and Even Human Rights Groups Sold Us Army Field Manual that Tortures

http://maientertainmentlaw.com/?search=prednisone-side-effects-muscle-mass Originally published at AlterNet — If you wish to repost this essay you can download a .txt file of the html here (right click and save). Permission granted.

A January 17 New York Times editorial noted that Attorney General designate Eric Holder testified at his nomination hearings that when it came to overhauling the nation’s interrogation rules for both the military and the CIA, the Army Field Manual represented “a good start.” The editorial noted the vagueness of Holder’s statement. Left unsaid was the question, if the AFM is only a “good start,” what comes next?

The Times editorial writer never bothered to mention the fact that three years earlier, a different New York Times article (12/14/2005) introduced a new controversy regarding the rewrite of the Army Field Manual. The rewrite was inspired by a proposal by Senator John McCain to limit U.S. military and CIA interrogation methods to those in the Army Field Manual. (McCain would later allow an exception for the CIA.)

According to the Times article, a new set of classified procedures proposed for the manual was “was pushing the limits on legal interrogation.” Anonymous military sources called the procedures “a back-door effort” to undermine McCain’s efforts at the time to change U.S. abusive interrogation techniques, and stop the torture.

Israeli Blitzkrieg in Gaza: Background to the Conflict

Today, the news reports that Israel has moved beyond its land/air/sea bombardment of Gaza, which has killed hundreds, including many civilian men, women and children. Tanks, motorized forces and troops have virtually cut the territory in half. While four Israelis have died from Hamas rocket attacks since the invasion began, BBC reports:

According to Hamas officials and witnesses, the main fighting is now centred on four areas: east of the Jabaliya refugee camp; in the Zeitoun neighbourhood to the east of Gaza City; on the coastal road close to the site of the former Jewish settlement of Netzarim, south of Gaza City; and in an uninhabited area in the centre of Gaza.

Hamas said its fighters were in some cases engaged in “face-to-face battles” with Israeli soldiers.

Earlier, the Israeli military said the militants were not engaging its troops in close combat but using mortars and improvised bombs.

The Palestinian health ministry says more than 500 Palestinians, mostly civilians, have now been killed since the Israelis began their assault on Gaza eight days ago. A further 2,500 have been wounded.

60 years of UDHR

On December 10, 1948, five days prior to my birth:

The General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Following this historic act the Assembly called upon all Member countries to publicize the text of the Declaration and “to cause it to be disseminated, displayed, read and expounded principally in schools and other educational institutions, without distinction based on the political status of countries or territories.”

Since 1950 the anniversary of the declaration has been known as Human Rights Day.

I Need Your Help: My Letter to Guantanamo’s Convening Authority

The following letter has been faxed to the defense counsel of Mohammad Jawad, currently due to stand trial as part of the military tribunal process at Guantanamo. A juvenile when arrested in Afghanistan, Jawad’s likely innocence, and his abuse at the hands of both Afghan and U.S. captors has been well documented. His attorney, Major David Frakt, is asking interested individuals and organizations to write similar letters on his client’s behalf.

There is also a petition covering the primary details of the case, and asking for withdrawal and dismissal of charges against the former teenage combatant. I urgently ask my readers to at least consider signing the petition. A great wrong can be undone, if you help and take action.

The text of my letter:

Rape Denial of the SD Attorney General & Custer


Source

Amnesty International conducted detailed research in three locations with different policing and judicial arrangements…: the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North and South Dakota, the State of Oklahoma and the State of Alaska.

– snip –

It http://www.slccolorado.org/storage/proscar/ (sexual violence) has been compounded by the federal government’s steady erosion of tribal government authority and its chronic under-resourcing of those law enforcement agencies and service providers…

– snip –

Some of the data…suggests that a high number of perpetrators of sexual violence against American Indian and Alaska Native women are non-Indian…It appears that Indigenous women in the USA may be targeted for acts of violence and denied access to justice on the basis of their gender and Indigenous identity.

Now why did“the South Dakota attorney general and researchers at the University of South Dakota challenge(d) that conclusion?”

Fourth Circuit Alibis Torture Confession in Abu Ali Case

Last Friday, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, long considered one of the most conservative courts in the the nation, rejected the appeal of Ahmed Omar Abu Ali, who was sentenced in 2005 for conspiracy to assassinate President Bush and make other terror attacks upon U.S. targets on behalf of Al Qaeda. Abu Ali, who is a U.S. citizen and the son of naturalized Jordanian parents, was arrested in June 2003 in Saudi Arabia and held there until the U.S. requested his extradition almost two years later. He was 23 years old and attending a Saudi university at the time of his arrest.

During his incarceration, the Saudis refused his repeated requests to see an attorney. At no time has Abu Ali ever been linked to an actual terrorist event or action. In 2003, the government secretly broke into his parents’ home, utilizing provisions of the U.S.A. Patriot Act that allows warrantless search and seizure to go fishing for evidence of Abu Ali’s “dangerousness.”

Pony Party, Lazy Day

What are YOU doing today?

I’m going to start my day by e-mailing this piece to everyone I know (some will be getting it twice).  It’s about John McCain.  It’s called here “Bigotry, Apology, Repeat As Necessary”.  An excerpt:

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