Category Archives: War

Solidarity Marches Held Across Globe to Demand Cease-Fire in Gaza

Organizers held rallies in the U.S., Europe, and Asia to mark Nakba Day and condemn Israel’s bombing and starvation of Palestinian civilians.

By Julia Conley. Published 5-19-2024 by Common Dreams

The London march. Photo:: PSC/X

As one United Nations official on Saturday said that “brand new words” are needed to adequately describe the devastation Israel has wrought across Gaza in its U.S.-backed military assault, tens of thousands of people across the globe marched in solidarity with Palestinians to demand an end to the “ongoing Nakba.”

The marches were held to honor Nakba Day, which was marked on May 15—the 76th anniversary of the mass displacement of 700,000 Palestinians who were forced from their homes when Israel declared statehood in 1948. The protesters demanded a cease-fire in Gaza, where Israeli forces have killed at least 35,456 people since October, the majority of them women and children.

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Record 76 Million Internally Displaced in 2023, Largely Due to Violence

“We have never, ever recorded so many people forced away from their homes and communities,” one expert said. “It is a damning verdict on the failures of conflict prevention and peacemaking.”

By Olivia Rosane. Published 5-14-2024 by Common Dreams

A group of women and children are temporarily sheltered in a school in Al Salam camp for Internally Displaced Persons, South Darfur. Photo: UNAMID/flickr/CC

War, conflict, and environmental disasters displaced a record 75.9 million people from their homes at the end of 2023, the Internal Displacement Monitoring Center reported Tuesday.

The vast majority of the displaced—68.3 million—were forced from their homes due to conflicts, the highest number since data became available 15 years ago.

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Israel’s war on Gaza could spark protests that shape entire region

While media focus is on pro-Palestine protests in the US, anger in North Africa and Western Asia could boil over

By Paul Rogers. Published 5-8-2024 by openDemocracy

Iraqi cleric Sadr mobilizes thousands at Baghdad pro-Palestinian rally. Screenshot: YouTube

Though many analysts feared an uncontrolled military escalation between Israel and Iran last month, this seems to have been avoided for now at least. Many states across the world are, however, witnessing a political escalation – not least those in North Africa and West Asia, which are often overlooked in conversations about protest.

The United States is the most obvious example of state-level controversy. Pro-Palestine protests and occupations are taking place at university campuses across the country – many of which have been met by violent police-led actions – as people take issue with Joe Biden’s enabling Israel in its horrific seven-month assault on Gaza.

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TikTok Sues US Government Over ‘Unconstitutional’ Potential Ban

One expert said legislators’ admissions “that the ban was motivated by a desire to suppress content about the Israel-Gaza conflict will make the law especially difficult for the government to defend,” said one First Amendment expert.

By Julia Conley. Published 5-7-2024 by Common Dreams

Creators, lawmakers oppose ban of TikTok at Capitol rally on Mar 22, 2023. Screenshot: NBC News via YouTube

A top First Amendment expert on Tuesday said TikTok has a strong case against the U.S. government as the social media platform filed a federal lawsuit against a potential ban—particularly since proponents of the law have admitted it is aimed at blocking Americans’ access to news out of Gaza.

The platform filed the lawsuit against U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit nearly two weeks after President Joe Biden signed the Protecting Americans From Foreign Adversaries Act into law as part of a larger foreign aid package.

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GOP Senators Threaten ICC: ‘Target Israel and We Will Target You’

“You have been warned,” wrote 12 Republican lawmakers led by Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas.

By Jake Johnson. Published 5-6-2024 by Common Dreams

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) . Photo: Michael Vadon/flickr/CC

Just over a week before the International Criminal Court issued a statement condemning threats against the institution, a dozen Republicans in the U.S. Senate sent a letter to the ICC’s prosecutor warning him against pursuing charges against Israeli officials over war crimes committed in the Gaza Strip.

The letter, dated April 24 and reported exclusively by Zeteo on Monday, explicitly threatens U.S. retaliation against the ICC if it issues arrest warrants for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu or other top Israeli officials.

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Gaza Journalists Killed by Israel Honored on World Press Freedom Day

“To claim these deaths are accidental is not only incredulous, it is insulting to the memory of professionals who lived their lives in service of truth and accuracy,” said one expert.

By Jessica Corbett. Published 5-3-2024 by Common Dreams

World Press Freedom Day: Gaza journalists remember slain colleagues. Screenshot: YouTube

As the international community marked World Press Freedom Day on Friday, journalists and advocates across the globe mourned and celebrated those killed in Israel’s ongoing assault on the Gaza Strip.

The U.S.-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has publicly identified at least 97 media workers killed since Israel launched its retaliatory war on October 7: 92 Palestinian, three Lebanese, and two Israeli reporters.

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Mistrial Declared in Abu Ghraib Torture Suit Against US Contractor

“This will not be the final word; what happened in Abu Ghraib is engraved into our memories and will never be forgotten in history,” one plaintiff vowed.

By Brett Wilkins. Published 5-2-2024 by Common Dreams

U.S. Army Spc. Charles Graner tortures hooded and handcuffed prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison outside Baghdad, Iraq. (Photo: U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command)

The federal judge presiding over a case filed by three Iraqis who were tortured by U.S. military contractors in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison two decades ago declared a mistrial Thursday after jurors were unable to reach a unanimous verdict.

After eight days of deliberation—a longer period than the trial itself—the eight civil jurors in Alexandria deadlocked over whether employees of CACI conspired with soldiers to torture detainees. The Virginia-based professional services and information technology firm was hired in 2003 during the George W. Bush administration to provide translators and interrogators in Iraq during the U.S.-led invasion and occupation, conspired with soldiers to torture detainees.

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Jewish Groups Decry House Passage of Bill Defining Criticism of Israel as ‘Antisemitism’

“Antisemitism is a serious problem, but codifying a legal definition could have dangerous implications for free speech,” said one campaigner.

By Brett Wilkins. Published 5-1-2024 by Common Dreams

House vote on the Antisemitism Awareness Act. Photo: Jacob N. Kornbluh/X

House lawmakers voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to approve legislation directing the U.S. Department of Education to consider a dubious definition of antisemitism, despite warnings from Jewish-led groups that the measure speciously conflates legitimate criticism of the Israeli government with bigotry against Jewish people.

House members approved the Antisemitism Awareness Act—bipartisan legislation introduced last year by Reps. Mike Lawler (R-N.Y.), Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.), Max Miller (R-Ohio), and Jared Moskowitz (D-Fla.) in the lower chamber and Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) in the Senate—by a vote of 320-91.

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Poor People’s Campaign Plans June 29 Mass Assembly, March in DC

“This is a crisis moment for our democracy,” said one campaigner. “We need for our political leaders to become moral leaders and take seriously the needs and priorities of the millions of people struggling simply to survive.”

By Jessica Corbett. Published 4-29-2024 by Common Dreams

Rev. William J. Barber II at the Democracy Awakening rally at U.S. Capitol in 2018. Photo: Becker1999/flickr/CC

Leaders of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival on Monday announced plans for the Mass Poor People & Low-Wage Workers’ Assembly & Moral March in Washington, D.C. on June 29, just over four months before the U.S. elections.

The aim of the assembly and march is to “mobilize the one-third of the U.S. electorate who are poor and low-wage infrequent voters” as well as to pressure political leaders to embrace a 17-point agenda during the 2024 election cycle and beyond.

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US Reportedly Working to Stop ICC From Issuing Arrest Warrant for Netanyahu

“There is absolutely no reason for Biden to be involved in this,” said one analyst. “But once again, Biden steps in to protect Netanyahu from the consequences of the war crimes he commits.”

By Jake Johnson. Published 4-28-2024 by Common Dreams

Screenshot: YouTube

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is reportedly growing increasingly concerned that the International Criminal Court is preparing to issue arrest warrants for him and other top government officials for committing war crimes in the Gaza Strip.

The Times of Israel reported Sunday that the Israeli government, in partnership with the U.S., is “making a concerted effort to head off” possible arrest warrants from the ICC, which first launched its war crimes investigation in the occupied Palestinian territories in 2021.

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