There have been several responding to photos of protests in solidarity with the Rohingya & with Kashmiris by saying the protests don’t change anything, they don’t end the genocide or the occupation. That’s for damn sure–not if they’re just moments in time when a bunch of people blow off steam. But if they are part of a sustained & international movement to support political power for Rohingya, Kashmiris, & others, if they don’t just peter out after a few rallies, they have the potential to change the relationship of forces between the Rohingya & Kashmiris & their respective military oppressors. How do we know this? Are we just whistling into the wind? We saw it in protests around the world against the Vietnam War & once you see it you cannot go back to skepticism or cynicism about the power of mass mobilizations against tyranny.
As the Assad cult waxes triumphal about their anticipated victory of counter-revolution in Syria, they turn attention to other countries where they can peddle Islamophobic rubbish about regime change operations & jihadi terrorists. They’re flailing a bit: should they land in Venezuela, the Philippines, Kashmir, or Arakan state? In the midst of genocide, Rohingya Muslims must have seemed ready-made for their monstrous lies. In their deranged calculations, where can they get the best remunerations for their lies, for croaking for their supper after Assad cuts off the checks?
No one wants to deal with these dark corrupt political forces including Islamophobes, anti-Semites, fascists. But we have to defend the Rohingya people & let no lies stand in our way. We have to stop the Assad cult from completely debasing politics & vilifying liberation struggles as “jihadi” terrorism. If we stand together in solidarity to do that, we are part of making this world suitable for human beings to live & love in, including Muslims who are under attack.
(Photo is Rohingya refugee & her children)
With my own eyes, I saw an Assad supporter dismiss the Rohingya genocide because China needs the oil & gas lines through Arakan state to counter the US buildup in the South China Sea. It’s not too late for those caught in the Assad cult to reclaim their sanity & get the hell out.
What does it tell you when ridicule of the White Helmets get more “likes” on Facebook than photos of them saving people’s lives or posts honoring members who have died doing so? What does it say when there are many more posts denouncing them than posts denouncing the bombers?
It doesn’t say that fascism is growing but that it’s emboldened & that the cult around Assad has Facebook sewed up despite their obsession about fake news.
For the past month, hundreds of thousands of protesters have taken to the streets in Manila against Duterte’s death squad war on the poor under the guise of fighting drugs & in opposition to martial law in Mindanao province–where he claims he is fighting Islamist terrorists & where US troops are involved. Since Duterte took office last June 30th, at least 12,500 people, including teens & adolescents, have been gunned down on the street by police & vigilante death squads. Protesters have been burning effigies of Duterte & expressing respect for his victims by displaying the photos of those executed & hanging tarps with their images.
We stand in fullest solidarity with the protesters & express deepest respect for their courage in standing against Duterte the butcher.
(Photo by Bullitt Marquez/AP)