Tag Archives: massacre

‘India Lurches Toward Full-Fledged Fascism’ as Modi Opens Contentious Hindu Temple

“The people of India have struggled for decades to secure a democracy that is secular, just, and equal. Modi must not be permitted to rob them of it now,” admonished Progressive International’s cabinet.

By Brett Wilkins. Published 1-22-2024 by Common Dreams

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was the center of attention during the January 22, 2024 concescration of the Ram Mandir temple in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh. (Photo: Narendra Modi/X)

The executive body of Progressive International warned Monday of the accelerating erosion of Indian democracy as right-wing Prime Minister Narendra Modi officially consecrated a highly controversial Hindu temple on the former site of a 16th-century Muslim mosque destroyed a generation ago by a Hindu nationalist mob.

Modi heralded the “advent of a new era” as he spoke outside Ram Mandir, a temple to the Hindu deity figure Ram—who epitomizes the triumph of good over evil—in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh. The small city of approximately 55,000 inhabitants is known for its religious diversity and long history of peaceful coexistence between Hindus and Muslims.

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On 18th Anniversary of Iraq Invasion, Activists Renew Calls for US Reparations

“Americans owe a debt to the people of Iraq that can never be repaid in full. However, it is incumbent and imperative that we try.”

By Brett Wilkins, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 3-19-2021

On route 27 near An Nu’ maniyah, Iraq during Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. Photo: Public Domain

Human rights and anti-war activists marked the 18th anniversary of the second of three American-led invasions of Iraq by renewing calls for the U.S.—this time the Biden administration—to pay reparations for 30 years of nonstop aggression against the Iraqi people.

“Eighteen years after the United States invaded Iraq on a patently false basis, we uplift the work of Iraqi activists, civil society, and their partners building local and transnational social justice movements under extremely precarious conditions,” the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) said in a statement. Continue reading

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Complicity is NOT Acceptable

Image via FaceBook.

Image via FaceBook.

On September 15, Islamic State stepped up a campaign in the Kobani region of northern Syria. Kobani is a Kurdish enclave that many refugees had fled to as threats of ISIS rose throughout the area. According to a report in “The Independent”:

“Isis fighters used tanks and artillery captured in Iraq to assault the Kurdish enclave around the city of Kobani, also called Ayn al-Arab, where between 400,000 and 500,000 members of Syria’s Kurdish minority have taken refuge. Idris Nassan, the deputy foreign representative of Kobani canton, told The Independent in a phone interview that the attack by Isis, also known as Islamic State, started on 15 September. “[It] is being made from three sides. So far they have captured 15 villages and we have evacuated another 10 because they are too close to the fighting,” he said.

Speaking from Kobani, Mr Nassan said that for the first time, the city had been hit by rockets, three of which exploded in the centre yesterday. The encircling Isis forces are between 12 and 18 miles from the city, which is surrounded by Kurdish villages held by fighters from the People’s Protection Units (YPG), the Syrian franchise of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). The latter has many battle-hardened veterans experienced in fighting the Turkish army over the past 30 years.

Some 400 Kurdish hostages have been taken by Isis, including 133 school children aged between 13 and 14 who were abducted on 30 May as they returned to their homes in Kobani after taking their junior high school final exams in Aleppo.

The siege of Kobani has not attracted much publicity, far less than that of the Old City of Homs, but if it did fall then its half-million Kurds would be at risk. The pro-opposition Syrian Observatory for Human Rights is quoted as saying that there are fears of massacres in the villages seized by Isis. In addition to eliminating the Kurds as opponents, Isis wants to establish its hold on the border region with Turkey across which it can bring in supplies and foreign volunteers. Mr Nassan says the siege of the enclave is not complete since “we can still buy food at high prices from Arab brokers” but he adds that “unfortunately, the world cares nothing about what happens in Kobani”.

The YPG and PKK have proved the most effective fighters against Isis but the PKK is still labelled a “terrorist organisation” by the US and Europe. The labelling was done at the behest of Turkey, which fought the PKK from 1984, though a ceasefire was declared in 2013. Turkey has been talking to the imprisoned PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan for five years but US and European officials are still wary of contacts with the Syrian and Turkish Kurds.

Isis has captured most of eastern Syria, defeating both the Syrian army and rebel movements during the summer. Isis fighters are within 30 miles of Aleppo, the largest city in Syria, and have been consolidating their positions elsewhere. They have been moving their headquarters and heavy weapons out of easily identifiable locations in preparation for US air attacks.”

Occupy World Writes calls on the coalition forces to assist the Kurds in defense of Kobani. These people are from the same ethnic group that brought the world’s attention to the plight of the Yazidi when ISIS chased them into the Sinjar mountains. The international community responded overwhelmingly to save the Yazidi from certain massacre. Now the Kurds are facing that very same fate. We also have no reason to believe the Islamic State would show no mercy toward the inhabitants and refugees in Kobani, since Kurds are the only ground force able to offer a defense against ISIS.

We can not sit in complicity while children, women and men are slaughtered at the hands of a terrorist organization. This is not humane, this is not sane, this is not in accordance with the words of Allah, God, or any divine entity.



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The High Price of Education

By ClosingTime (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

By ClosingTime (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Their throats were slit, some were shot, and bodies burned to ashes early Tuesday morning, February 25th, in a massacre at the Federal Government College boarding school in Buni Yadi, Yobe, northern Nigeria. Approximately 60 students met their deaths at the hands of an extremist militant group, Boko Haram.

This follows two attacks last week. In one incident, militants destroyed a whole village and shot terrified residents as they tried to escape. Last September, 40 students were killed in an attack similar to this morning’s raid.

Last May, Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan ordered offensive campaigns to bring the violence under control that have been blamed for triggering reprisals by militants against civilians. He defends his decisions and that of his military, saying that the militants have been contained to a small area near the border of neighboring Cameroon.

Since 2009, the group is responsible for the deaths of over 10,000 people and the displacement of over 90,000 civilians attempting to escape the violence the group uses to enforce its views in the regions controlled by Bokko Haram.

Education in Nigeria is more prevalent in the southern cities and population areas of the country. Less than 20% of the population in the north receive education, where these attacks are taking place.

Formally known as the Congregation of the People of Tradition for Proselytism and Jihad, Boko Haram tends to attack schools that teach Nigeria’s national curriculum, which the militants consider to be Western. The group follows an extremely strict version of Islam, including sharia law, and its name means “Western education is sinful” in the northern Hausa language, a report from the BBC said.

Boko Haram supports traditional Islamic education systems that educate only boys and involve teaching prayers and memorization of Quranic texts used in worship. Skills for trades are to be taught by village elders or family members, all male. Women are not educated in this system. Nigeria, in fact, is home to the world’s largest practicing population of indoctrinated FGM (female genitalia mutilation) known today. Researchers and scholars say there is absolutely no scriptural text in any world religion, including Islam, that condones such an atrocity.

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