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Index May 2008

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The right to food and the impact of liquid biofuels

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(In the words of Henry Kissinger:  “Control oil and you control nations; control food and you control the people).

Published on FAO.org, by Asbjørn Eide, senior fellow of the Norwegian Center for Human Rights at the University of Oslo, May 30, 2008.

This study contributes to the present discussion on soaring food prices, climate change and biofuels, all issues that are at the center of the debate of the High Level Conference on World Food Security: the Challenges of Climate Change and Bioenergy (Rome, 3 to 5 June 2008). The urgency of the situation and the need for immediate measures and action have recently been reaffirmed with the adoption of a resolution by the UN Human Rights Council which urges States to review “any policy or measure which could have a negative impact on the realisation of the right to food” … (full text).

Download the study free of charges: The right to food and the impact of liquid biofuels (agrofuels), 54 pages.

Human Rights in the United States

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The human rights record of the United States is a controversial and complex issue. The United States has been praised for its progressive human rights record at times and criticized for some of its policies and practices at other times. Historically, the United States has been committed to the principle of liberty and has sheltered many political and economic refugees in times of international strife. It has a powerful and independent judiciary and a constitution that enforces separation of powers to prevent tyranny … (full huge long text).

… The U.S. has signed and ratified the following human rights treaties (all UN-links included in the following wikipedia-articles):

International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR);

Optional protocol on the involvement of children in armed conflict;

International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination;

Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment;

Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees;

Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography;

Non-binding treaties voted for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights;

Books on blacks and development;

Black Manifesto, by The Black National Economic Conference, July 10, 1969.

The Economics of Black Community Development, 1970;

Calling the Kettle Black, April 23, 2008;

Amnesty International Report 2008

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THE STATE OF THE WORLD’S HUMAN RIGHTS

(in five of the six UN languages (not in chinese), but also in german, italian and portuguese)

Published on Amnesty International, May 27, 2008.

60 years of human rights failure – governments must apologize and act now

Download in english:

Introduction: Broken promises, 20 pages;

The State of the World Human Rights, 398 pages.

Sustainable Development Report on Africa

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Five-Year Review of the Implementation of the World Summit on Sustainable Development Outcomes in Africa (WSSD+5)

Picked up on Weitzenegger’s Website for International Development Cooperation, and its monthly Newsletter.

Published on UNECA.org, by United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, April 2008, 186 pages.

Tibetan monks carve out new home in US heartland

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Published on AFP Agence France Press, 4 days ago.

BLOOMINGTON, Indiana – In the rolling hills of Indiana, Tibetan monks pray for their homeland. They have little hope of returning.

While their spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, tours Western nations in hope of drumming up support for Tibetan autonomy, these ten monks work to keep their culture alive in exile.

They tend the lush grounds dotted with two stunning stupas and a scattering of Mongolian yurts, teach meditation, hold regular prayer services and introduce curious locals and tourists to the art, architecture and music of their homeland.

Founded by the Dalai Lama’s brother, the Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center is now run by the most senior religious leader to leave Tibet in decades.

Arjia Thubten Lobsang Rinpoche was the abbot of the influential Kumbum Monastery and spent years publicly defending the Chinese government’s policies.

That ended in 1998 when he was told to tutor the Panchen Lama selected by Beijing to replace the child chosen by the Dalai Lama.

Rinpoche, 58, fled to the United States where his is free to air his true feelings about the Chinese rulers.

“His holiness, the Dalai Lama, the Chinese people need a leader just like him,” Rinpoche told AFP … (full text).

The Voltaire Network is in danger

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It needs your support!, Make a donation to the Voltairenet.org.

Published on Voltairenet.org, 15 May 2008.

Ever since it was created, the Voltaire Network has relentlessly opened debates and triggered controversies. Its foes have launched smearing campaigns aimed at intimidating its members and discrediting its activities. Today, they would like to see it disappear.

During the past six years, the U.S. Defense Department has forbidden mainstream media from reporting our activities, threatening to lift journalist accreditations; the State Department has included us among “the main anti-american misinformation sources in the world” (probably a tribute vice pays to virtue); envoys from the U.S. National Security Council have attempted to bribe us; a specialized Tsahal team hacked our website; contracts were made on our president and some of our South-American contributors. However, until May French authorities had guaranteed our physical security, freedom of circulation and expression. Today this is over: pressure is mounting, extending to our relatives, and we can no longer rely on France’s benevolence.

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Women’s Voices

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Linked with Meredith Tax – USA.

Published on The Nation, by Meredith Tax, August 28, 2003.

Through the corporate media’s electronic collage of murders, sex scandals, celebrity sightings and Pentagon-generated fantasy can be heard a constant buzz–”war, terror, security”–but who knows what these words really mean to people here or in other countries? Since 9/11, the voices of ordinary civilians, particularly women, have virtually disappeared from the public discourse on these matters, leaving us only with pundits and military experts.

Deeply troubled by this trend, board members of Women’s WORLD, a global free-speech network of feminist writers, designed a writing contest to bring women’s ideas on war and terror to wider public attention. The Nation Institute co-sponsored the project, and the Puffin Foundation gave us a small grant to cover the prizes. The contest, “Women’s Voices in War Zones,” asked for personal essays in response to questions like, “Do you live in a war zone or state of terror? Is it personal or public?” We circulated the call through ads in The Nation and global feminist listservs and websites. But we had no idea what kind of response we would get.

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Die Verantwortung der ökonomischen Theorien

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Verbunden mit Bernd Senf – Germany.

Buchbesprechung: eine Zusammenfassung von Wolfgang Fischer zu Die blinden Flecken der Ökonomie – Wirtschaftstheorien in der Krise, Bernd Senf, dtv 2001.

Ein paar blinde Flecken:

  • Solange für wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen von Gewalt, Hunger und Elend wissenschaftliche Disziplinen zuständig sind, die keine Ahnung von Ökonomie haben, können Zynismus, Menschenverachtung und Blindheit gegenüber der sozialen Realität ihre Blüten treiben (S.262). Die Ökonomen selbst, die mit ihren abstrakten Theorien die strukturelle Gewalt des Kapitalismus legitimieren, wähnen sich aus dem Schneider und fühlen sich für die sozialen Katastrophen, die von ihm hervorgetrieben werden, in keiner Weise verantwortlich. Sie können ruhig schlafen und mit ihnen all die vielen, die an ihre Lehre glauben.
  • Das Ausblenden der Werte von Natur, Leben und Mensch bewirkt eine gigantische Bilanzfälschung, ein kolossales globales Täuschungs- und Selbsttäuschungsmanöver über vermeintliche Erfolge wirtschaftlichen Handelns und wirtschaftlichen Wachstums der Industriegesellschaft und des Weltmarkts (S.43). Der hohe Preis emotionalen Leids und individueller wie kollektiver Gewalt, die aus der schon in der Kindheit beginnenden Ausrichtung des Menschen an den vermeintlichen wirtschaftlichen Sachzwängen entstehen, wird schlichtweg verschwiegen (S.148).
  • Bernd Senf verweist auch auf die Blindheit gegenüber ganzheitlichen und ökologischen Lebensweisen von Subsistenzwirtschaften, die sich auch darin zeigt, dass diese Lebensweise von heute noch ca. 2/3 der Menschheit nicht als Ökonomie gilt und von daher noch zur Ökonomie bekehrt werden muß (S.42).
  • Die ökonomische Lehre versäumt es bis heute, Boden- oder Kapitaleigentum in deren historischen, auf Gewalt und Unrecht fußenden Zusammenhängen zu entlarven. Boden- und Kapitaleigentum erscheinen neben der menschlichen Arbeitskraft als Quellen der Wertschöpfung, während sie doch nur ein Recht der Eigentümer auf Abschöpfung der durch die Natur und Arbeit geschaffenen Werte beinhalten. Die ökonomische Lehre versäumt es generell, die Reproduktionsbedingungen der Natur (und zum Teil auch der Menschen) ausreichend zu thematisieren, während klare Prinzipien darüber entwickelt und durchgesetzt werden, dass der tote Produktionsapparat auf dem Wege der Abschreibung wiederhergestellt wird und dass ein totes Geldkapital sich über Zins sogar vergrößert (S.105).
  • Die menschliche Arbeitskraft als einzige Quelle der Wertschöpfung in der Marx’schen Mehrwerttheorie würdigt nach Senfs Analyse zwar im Gegensatz zu den Klassikern (Adam Smith) die Produktivkraft der Arbeit, vernachlässigt jedoch völlig die umfassendere Produktivkraft der Natur, von der die menschliche Arbeitskraft nur ein kleiner Teil ist (S.104). Von daher rühren die blinden Flecken bei Marx in bezug auf Ökologie und Feminismus.

… (full long text).

Darfur: Scorched earth tactics warrant UN sanctions

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says Human Rights Watch

Linked with Eric Breteau – France, with the betrayal on Darfour’s children, and with Manufacturing a Food Crisis.

Received by mail from HREA and its Newsletter, May 19, 2008.

A Human Rights Watch Press release – Government Attacks Show Civilians Need Greater International Protection:

(New York, May 19, 2008) – The United Nations Security Council should impose targeted sanctions on Sudanese officials responsible for attacks against civilians in West Darfur in February 2008, said Human Rights Watch in a new report released today. Following an attack by Darfur rebels on Khartoum on May 10, 2008, Human Rights Watch also expressed concern about possible government reprisals against civilians in West Darfur.

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China: Ethnically diverse forum shut down

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Published on Global Voices, by John Kennedy, May 20th, 2008.

On May 15, Uighur Online, the main online forum serving to bridge the huge communication gap between China’s Muslim population, other minority ethnic groups, and Han Chinese, was shut down.

All that remains now of Uighur Online, courtesy of archive.org.

As it is the norm in China, no reason is given for website closures, just an order. All that can now be found at the site (here in chinese) or its sister site Uighur Biz (here in chinese) are instructions on how to donate to Chinese Red Cross, (in english) and this message: … (following is in chinese characteres) …

… (and later again in english): Friends of all ethnic groups, Hello everyone! It is with extremely heavy hearts that we hereby notify you that due to those reasons that everyone knows, Uighur Online has been closed.

Thank you everyone for your constant support, care and help for Uighur Online, and even more thanks to the members of the management team, the BBS webmasters, the editors, columnists, experts and the academics who have put so much into Uighur Online. In the two short years that Uighur Online has been around and with the efforts of a multi-ethnic management team, the site receives on average around one million pageviews per day, with tens of thousands of registered users. With all the people we’ve come to know and friends we’ve made from many different ethnic groups, our understanding of each other has both broadened and deepened. Uighur Online provided grassroots communication channels between different ethnic groups, allowing for conversations and discussions which, we firmly believe, were quite meaningful.

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some newest anti-war articles

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Linked with David Harris (the protester) – USA, and with Anti-War.US.

Some today’s articles found while searching for David Harris:

The rise of Moktada al-Sadr;

Which way now for the left;

1968: I was there;

DePaul confronts a vigilante;

Oakland activist keeps spirit of revolution strong;

Global Economic Crisis, Sustainability and Iraq War Among Topics To Be Discussed at “Building a New World” Conference To Be Held in Radford, Virginia, May 22-25, 2008;

Bella Abzug, 1920-1998: Activist for Women’s Rights Was Known for Her Large Hats and Strong Opinions;

“Voices” raised in honor of Roslyn Zinn;

Learn from history;

and some days older:

War Funding Bill Stalls in House
;

Barack, Hillary, Jeremiah and Howard.

the betrayal on Darfour’s children

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adopt a child, thus safe a life – the Axis that opposes people’s socialisation versus elite’s socialisation

Linked with Eric Breteau – France, and with no more any indulgence for our world elites.

I have just read the french book: Eric Breteau, l’Arche de Zoe, les dessous de l’affaire d’Etats, ma verite, Plon, 2008, ISBN: 978-2-259-20922-9.

Please now listen to excerpts of citations in the following audio from toucan radio or read the transcript excerpts hereafter … This piece was recorded in July, 2007, a couple of months before they started their operation on the ground. Click here to hear reports on the French hearing and verdict … (full text).

Statements from Janice Peyre, she is the chair of EFA, the Federation of adoptive children and families in France, a volunteer-run advocacy organization: … “Our main criticism is that there has been a confusion between fostering, providing relief, and adoption … and: They have created emotional expectations for some of among some of these people. Lead them to think that, in a context where inter-country adoption is increasingly difficult and complicated, there was perhaps a short, quick, easy way of adopting through Darfur … and: An adoption is not a humanitarian cause” … (full text or audio).

My comment: I think here is the real point!

Yes, here is the difference between elitist behavior and their manipulations between their own ‘peer groups’ (I call it ‘dirty secret arrangements’) and us, the so called not elites, the people:

  • first: seen legally Madame Peyre is right. But, the elites have created this laws, these arrangements, letting each elite group handle its people as they want it, following the old aristocratic law that each earl remains the only deciding sovereign over its people … and we the people got the reflex of submission to what they tell, since hundreds of years people has learned: yes I do not know, you know … ;
  • but second: there remains a counter reflex, as in reality normal people reacts not like elites: in reality, when seeing people /children /women/ old persons in distress, I think YES, IT IS a normal human reflex to say out of the heart “ok, from now on I look and care for you”. More, our christian religion ORDERS us to do so … ;
  • and third: this so called submission to higher orders is a fine excuse for many of us people NOT to have empathy, a heart reflex, when we want only look for ourselves, be egoist, when we feel NOT responsible for this humanity. So, finally elites reach their goal with the help of that great part of egoist people who wants think only for themselves.

And, guys, empathy and a heart reflex HAS to do with Human Rights. It is the heart which tells you when you have to start actions. It is the heart who makes you move.

Yes, I did it during the South France community for many children, when hippy mothers were not able to look for their youngsters. Then their children lived with my children, without any discussion, and my motivation was, NOT TO LET THIS CHILDREN IN THE SHITTY SITUATION THEIR PARENTS HAD PUT THEM – by running away for their experiences, pleasures, sex plays, etc etc) …

… Hey, guys, this is the normal reflex of normal empathic people, of people being not submit to some dubious explanations of NOT intervention, like these days for Birmany …

Now, please read/listen to what says Eric Breteau’s main-partner in the operation, Emilie Lelouch: … “You cannot go in Darfur. The Sudanese government say you cannot go. We cannot work with children. So the only way to save their lives is to go outside of the country … and: Each time in your life, you want to do something and you have to ask. And yes, we know about what’s happening over there for many years, so we stop to ask authorization. It’s a risk. We have to take risks for sure … and: At the beginning it was not a story of adoption. To us it’s really important to save lives, that’s it. We don’t know what happens later. And sorry, but we don’t care. We have to do something now. Now we have to go there and bring them back that’s the point. We work in an emergency. We are not an agency of the adoption. This is not our job … and: We went to Internet and we started to discuss with people who was waiting for a child for a long time, just because we think they are much more ready” … (full text or audio).

… and: I remember her answer made when in Darfur (shown in a french TV) while putting red colored stuff on some children: it was soomething like … “all these elites speaking about laws have lost their right to speak so, as they let this children since years in their inhuman situation, accepting their non-development, instead risking death … I take the right to save this children, I do not ask, as my conscience tells me to do so”

My comment: Yes, that’s exactly the point!

Yes, the elites want hold their souvereignty in decisions over their peoples, we see it now in Birmany … for this ‘right’ they let die all ‘weaks not able to survive’!

But in my eyes these elites deciding over people’s death or life have lost since a long time their credibility! Elites who force peoples to act against their own conscience must have lost the right to be called elites.

So, what if some elites, following their own, same conscience, would help people to run such actions, instead of betraying them, like it happened in Darfour?

Sure, I must be dreaming, as … elites are always submitted. If not, they are collectively excluded by all their fellows. I think that a well known french ministre must know that … I remember a secretary, freshly advanced as chief in a company I worked, said me in the beginning: as an elite you have the right to do ALL you want, as long as you are not caught. But IF, you are lost, no one elite-fellow will help you.

I guess, the frenchy elites adopted exactly this behavior when Eric and co were caught.

Thus, Eric Breteau’s naivety was not to safe children, but to believe that any elite will help him when something goes wrong. A lesson for us all.

Funder Training Course

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Building Inclusive Financial Systems: How Funders Can Make a Difference

Picked up on Weitzenegger’s Website for International Development Cooperation, and its monthly Newsletter.

Published on the CGAP Donor Information Resource Center (DIRECT:

Courses schedule for 2008:
Training in Dubrovnik, Croatia, September 8-12, 2008 – in English, download brochure and enrolment form;

Training in Kigali, Rwanda, November 10-14, 2008 – in French / 10-14 novembre 2008 – en français,
téléchargez la brochure et le formulaire d’inscription.

Download the complete 2008 funder training brochure.

Microfinance has become shorthand for providing a broad range of financial services to a wide variety of poor and low-income clients. The expanded definition means opening up the financial systems to ensure that poor people have permanent access to financial services. It also means providing poor people with options.

Who should attend the course? … (full text).

5th Microfinance Training of Trainers

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A Blended Distance Learning Course

The Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI) and the Tokyo Development Learning Center TDLC of the World Bank are pleased to offer the fifth Microfinance Training of Trainers MFTOT …

Course from 16 July to 30 October 2008:

… MFTOT is a unique blended distance learning course which aims to enhance the knowledge of microfinance practitioners and strengthen the institutional capacity of microfinance in the Asia-Pacific Region … (Newsletter).

… The Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI) and the Tokyo Development Learning Center TDLC of the World Bank are pleased to offer the fifth Microfinance Training of Trainers MFTOT Course from 16 July to 30 October 2008. MFTOT is a unique blended distance learning course which aims to enhance the knowledge of microfinance practitioners and strengthen the institutional capacity of microfinance in the Asia-Pacific Region …

… Course Description / Participants / How to Apply / Language etc. … (full text).

HREA Distance Learning Programme

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awailable also in many other languages

HREA organises specialised courses via distance education for human rights advocates and educators, staff of social justice organisations, international and inter-governmental organisations, and development professionals. The application process for courses offered in 2008 has started.

Application deadline for courses offered in the second semester is 1 June 2008.

Upcoming courses: second semester 2008 … (full text: links to all these courses).

Links:

More information about HREA’s Distance Learning Programme;

Frequently asked questions about the courses;

Past courses offered in 2001-2007.


english homepage of HREA
- Human Rights Education Associates (awailable also in many other languages).

World Day Against Child Labour 2008

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Published on HREA, informed by their newsletter.

12 June 2008 – This year the World Day against Child Labour will be marked around the world with activities to raise awareness that education is the right response to child labour: education for all children at least to the minimum age of employment; education policies that address child labour by provision of properly resourced quality education and skills training; and education to promote awareness on the need to tackle child labour.

The ILO has estimated that some 165 million children between the ages of 5 and 14 are involved in child labour. Many of these children work long hours, often in dangerous conditions. Child labour is closely associated with poverty. Many poor families are unable to afford school fees or other school costs. The family may depend on the contribution that a working child makes to the household’s income, and place more importance on that than on education. And when a family has to make a choice between sending either a boy or girl to school, it is often the girl who loses out …

… Among the most important steps required are:

  • - provision of free and compulsory education;
  • - tackling barriers to girls education;
  • - ensuring that children have access to a school and a safe and quality learning environment;
  • - providing catch up education opportunities for children and youth who have so far missed out on formal schooling;
  • - tackling the worldwide shortage of teachers and ensuring a properly trained and professional teaching force;
  • - enforcing laws on child labour and education in line with international standards;
  • - tackling poverty, and creating decent work for adults;
  • - raising public awareness to tackle child labour.

(full text and many usefull links).

Le Réseau Voltaire est en danger

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Faire un don au Réseau Voltaire / make a donation.

Attention: the english text site http://www.voltairenet.org/article157052.html seems to be censored.
See what is Reseau Voltaire on the english wikipedia, and also on wikipeida francais.
See also: Site officiel en francais; and the official website in english.

Received by mail / reçu par mail:

From: Reseau Voltaire
Date: 16/05/2008

Depuis sa création, le Réseau Voltaire n’a cessé d’ouvrir des débats et de susciter des polémiques. Ses adversaires ont lancé des campagnes visant à l’intimider ou à le discréditer. Aujourd’hui, ils veulent le faire disparaître.

  • Au cours des six dernières années, le département US de la Défense a interdit aux grands médias d’évoquer notre action sous peine de suppression de leurs accréditations;
  • le département d’État nous a classé parmi les principales sources de désinformation anti-américaine dans le monde (probablement un hommage du vice à la vertu);
  • des émissaires du Conseil de sécurité nationale des États-Unis nous ont présenté des offres de corruption;
  • une unité spécialisée de Tsahal a hacké notre site Internet;
    des contrats ont été lancés contre notre président et contre certains de nos collaborateurs sud-américains.

Cependant, jusqu’en mai, les autorités françaises ont garanti notre sécurité physique, notre liberté de circulation et d’expression. Il en va autrement aujourd’hui: les pressions sont plus fortes, elles s’étendent à notre entourage, et nous ne pouvons plus compter sur la bienveillance de la France.

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Amy Goodman’s ‘Empire’

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Linked with Amy Goodman – USA.

Published on The Nation, by Lizzy Ratner, May 5, 2005.

… She kept the lines open and the microphones hot, throwing her voice into the radio murk in case any stations chose to pick up the feed. “We are not going to draw any conclusions at this point, just reporting the information of the planes crashing into the World Trade Center buildings, the plane crashing into the Pentagon, a fire at the Pentagon right now,” Goodman said in her grainy alto, at the beginning of what would become an eight-hour marathon broadcast that was eventually picked up by KPFA, the one Pacifica station still airing her broadcasts. And then, shortly after 10 am, she announced: “It looks like the south tower of the World Trade Center has collapsed…”

Three and a half years and two wars later, Goodman is still talking into her microphone, reporting on the big and small crises of the day. She is still broadcasting from the firehouse studio, still sending her war-and-peace reports into the media ether, except that these days when the engineer flips the switch on her microphone, she can expect hundreds of thousands of listeners to tune in.

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Timing of Extradition Jeopardizes Investigation Into Death Squads

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Received by mail:

From: HREA – Human Rights Education Associates and its Newsletter
Date: 14/05/2008

Human Rights Watch Press release

(New York, May 13, 2008) – The extradition of Colombia’s top paramilitary leaders to the United States increases the odds they will serve substantial prison sentences for some of their crimes, yet the extradition could undermine local efforts to investigate human rights atrocities and paramilitary infiltration of the political system, Human Rights Watch said today.

Colombia on the morning of May 13 announced the extradition of 14 individuals, including several top commanders of the drug-running paramilitary death squads that are responsible for some of the most horrific atrocities in Colombian history. These include notorious crime bosses, Salvatore Mancuso, Rodrigo Tovar Pupo (a.k.a. “Jorge 40″), and Diego Fernando Murillo (a.k.a. “Don Berna”).

The extradited commanders had been participating in a “demobilization” process in which Colombia’s courts had ruled that, in exchange for dramatically reduced prison sentences, they would be required to provide full and truthful confessions about their human rights abuses and other crimes, and to disclose information about their paramilitary groups’ operations and accomplices.

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no more any indulgence for our world elites

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Burma continues to reject help.

In Birmany/Miramar a genocide is preparing (this are my own words, I am responsable to say it like that).

Belonging to the french TV France24, the Birman Dictators are distributing food and help only to the supporters of their dictature.

IF NOW the WORLD ELITES let it do and intervenes only, when 3/4 of the rest of the population will be death, THEN they have lost the status of ELITES, lost the right to be called elites.

It is TODAY you have to go there by force. IF NOT, you have lost your right to be called elite.
Heidi

Links: France 24 in arabic, en francais, in english.

When culture kills – Urvashi Butalia’s View From the South

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Linked with Urvashi Butalia – India;

Published on find articles.com, first on New Internationalist, by Urvashi Butalia, December 2003.

HESHU YONES was 16 and in love. For this her father slit her throat and killed her. Heshu’s ‘crime’ was that she fell in love with a fellow student at her college. The young man belonged to a different religion and the two planned to marry–against her father’s wishes. ‘Me and you will probably never understand each other,’ Heshu wrote to her father as she prepared to run away. ‘I’m sorry I wasn’t what you wanted, but there are some things you can’t change’ …

… But what is this culture that people are so anxious to protect? It’s a culture of violence, a culture based on the oppression of women and a culture that feeds into the increasing acceptance of other forms of violence which are not necessarily gender-based.

Perhaps it’s time we learned something from those brave women’s groups who are fighting against such cultural impositions. They are the only ones who are speaking out for the victims of such violence, who are attempting to return humanity to the women who have been killed. They’re the ones who are setting up homes and shelters, persuading governments to make fairer laws. But in the end it will take much more than the efforts of a few women’s groups to persuade the world that there is no honour, only shame, in killing. (full text).

(Urvashi Butalia is an Indian writer and publisher. She lives in New Delhi).

US secret services in between China and Tibet

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Learning about the Past to Understand the Present

Published on Voltairenet.org, by Fidel Castro, April 2, 2008.

The Tibet images published by the CNN are simplistic: on the one hand they show the Chinese as the bad guys because they are communist; on the other hand we have the Tibet people, the Buddhists. But Comandante Fidel Castro warns that all that is but mere propaganda. The history of that Asian region discloses the truth, the old causes and disputes between the United States and China: the adhesion of Tibet to the Kuomintang to fight Mao and the Buddhist guerrilla under the command of the CIA …

… The Dalai Lama, bestowed with the US Congress’ Gold Medal, praised George W. Bush for his efforts in defense of freedom, democracy and human rights.

The Dalai Lama called the war in Afghanistan a war of “liberation”, the Korean War a war of “semi-liberation” and the Vietnam War a “failure”.

I have summarized information taken from the Internet, from the site Rebelión, specifically. Because of space and time limitations, I have not included the pages where the quoted paragraphs were taken from. There are those who suffer from Chino-phobia, a condition shared by many Westerners, accustomed by their education and cultural differences to regard whatever comes from China contemptuously.
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How Our System Works

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Published on Countercurrents.org, by Thomas Riggins, 06 May, 2008.

There is an article in Wednesday’s New York Times that is a perfect illustration of how capitalism works (“Patent Bill is Bonanza To Lobbyists” by Robert Pear, NYT 5/1/08, Business Section).

There is a heated debate going on in Congress whether or not companies (especially drug companies) “should be allowed to keep patents they obtained by misrepresentation or cheating.” Fraud would be a better word but the Times doesn’t want to upset its advertisers.

Imagine, a company lies to the Patent Office to get a patent because if the truth were known it would not qualify for the patent. The truth comes out. Our senators and representatives are actually debating a new law which says its ok for the company to keep the patent; it cannot be revoked just because it was obtained by lying to the government. Remember if you as an individual lie to the government, i.e., the FBI or the IRS, it’s off to jail.
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Philanthropy in Asia? the glue that binds

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Received by Alliance Online and its Newsletter of May 2008:

An Interview with Terry Farris (to read the full interview, click on the internal link).

An excerpt: … what about the philanthropic infrastructure?

How is the infrastructure to support this growth of philanthropy developing? Before answering this question, Farris points out that philanthropy has always been a key component of Asians? lives. From his 18 years working in the philanthropic sector around the world, he believes they are one of the most generous groups of individuals in the world. Of the individuals or families he has advised, over 80 per cent already had a charitable structure in place. But it is only in the last few years that wealthy Asians are starting to become more public with their giving.

The UK has had a huge influence in countries like Singapore, India, Australia, Hong Kong and Malaysia, which are all Commonwealth countries. These countries continue to follow common law charity rules and regulations, which create a strong and accountable foundation for the establishment of charities and charitable structures. Countries like Taiwan and the Philippines have been influenced more by the US.
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