Unconditional support for self-determination means unconditional

There’s a regrettable & rather sleazy analog in the way people equivocate & neutralize unconditional support for Palestinians & Kashmiris. For Palestinians, they blither-ass about Hamas, as if the political demands of Palestinian self-determination against Israeli colonialism were grievously harmed by the political leadership of a small section of Palestinians. Those who pull this think they’re being foxy when they’re jackasses.

For Kashmiris, they blither-ass about Pakistan, as if the occupation of 700,000 Indian troops was a parity with alleged Pakistani infiltration. Kashmiri demands for self-determination are discredited as Pakistani manipulation & when some Kashmiri protesters wave Pakistani flags the equivocators are certain this is proof positive of their suspicions. Doesn’t self-determination mean Kashmiris, who probably have conflicting views of what they want, have a right to work out allegiances on their own?

Either support for self-determination is unconditional or it’s a ragged tissue of lies, rationalizations, & horse manure.

Some may think my posts about Kashmir are a bit overmuch when there are other important issues. Not when you compare the scale of human rights crimes & carnage to the scope of media blackout.

My political tradition prioritizes solidarity at times like Kashmiris are enduring–especially to compensate for media silence. It would be a whole lot better if other progressives joined Kashmiri activists & supporters & took up the banner of Kashmiri solidarity & azadi (freedom). That’s how international solidarity is built.

Why Indian soldiers are targeting Kashmiri children

Kashmiri child from FB wall of Ameen Rather) Aug 8 2016

This is the answer to why Indian occupying forces are targeting children. Exactly as Israel does Palestinian children. They are the irrepressible font of rebellion against tyranny & always have been. It is the young who demand azadi (freedom) & make revolutions.

Long live Kashmiri Intifada. End the occupation. Self-determination for Kashmir.

(Photo from Facebook wall of Ameen Rather)

Scale of human rights crimes in Kashmir

To show the scale of Indian military human rights crimes in Kashmir in the past 30 days, along with the scale of what media is ignoring: 6000 are reported injured (200 a day); 64 unarmed protesters have been killed; & hundreds, including small children, have been blinded.

If you care about human rights, don’t join media’s news blackout. Protest & educate far & wide.


A momentary breach in news blackout on occupation of Kashmir

Srinagar protesters run from tear gas ( (Photo- Danish Ismail:Reuters) Aug 8 2016

This photo from Yahoo of protesters running away from Indian police firing tear gas at them might be a first in photojournalist news coverage of the occupation of Kashmir. It’s about time since this brutal siege is in its 30th day & photos of the horrific injuries are all over social media.

We are only told police are firing at protesters on the outskirts of Srinagar demonstrating against killings in Kashmir. The caption didn’t clarify that the killings are of unarmed protesters by Indian military thugs using live ammo, pellet guns, & tear gas.

Mark this moment when a photo breached the deceits & news blackout. It probably won’t happen again soon.

Long live Kashmiri Intifada. End the occupation. Self-determination for Kashmir.

(Photo by Danish Ismail/Reuters)

Media coverage of siege of Kashmir a paltry disgrace

Kashmiris watch proetst from window ( (Photo- Danish Ismail:Reuters) Aug 8 2016

Kashmir soldier on guard (Photo- Mukhtar Khan) Aug 8 2016

This might be a good time to question the purpose of photojournalism which apparently has become a disputed question–especially between photographers & editors. One would think it is to visually portray what is going on, which is what most photographers try to do. But pictures worth a thousand words meet editors beholden to the deceits of power. Some photos will never be published. Those that are get captioned in gibberish. Many that get published ignore war & occupation in place of human interest trivialities. Especially war photojournalism has become a travesty.

This is the 30th day of a brutal military siege in Kashmir. There have been not more than five or six photos in major, especially US & European, media in that time although photos come from other sources, likely cell phones.

These are two of three that appeared in Yahoo last Saturday. These might be interesting photos in an album about Kashmir but not during a violent period of pellet gun, tear gas, & live ammo attacks on protesters. These are editorial evasions to replace those that expose the occupation.

Editors must be grateful as all hell that the Olympics games started & they can inundate us with countless dull moments in sports to replace the countless photos of baseball players sliding into base. It all wears thin.

End the occupation. Self-determination for Kashmiris.

(Photo on top is on outskirts of Srinagar by Danish Ismail/Reuters; photo on bottom is paramilitary soldier enforcing the curfew in Srinagar by Mukhtar Khan)

Enough with the parsing distinctions among two-bit hacks! How about some politics?

Once again, I have a long waiting list of mostly Kashmiris & Palestinians who are involved in momentous historic struggles & who I would like to engage with politically. To make room for them, I’m deleting those I never engage with or whose schtick is lesser evil parsing, now between Stein, Clinton, & Drumpf, which leaves me cold as an approach to such consequential questions as war, occupation, ethnic cleansing, & colonialism.

In order to lesser evil anybody you have to ignore politics as if they were cumbersome irrelevancies. That is just so not me. My socialist tradition doesn’t tolerate compromises on those issues. That’s why I’ve stuck with that tradition whilst being denounced as a sectarian.

I’m not copping an attitude toward anyone, just prioritizing. Proceed ahead with the parsing; just leave me out of it. To me there are touchstones in politics & war & occupation are primary. If you can put aside the criminalities of Clinton & Drumpf or the compromises of Stein on those questions, my mind begins to fry, my eyes go crossed, & my snoring becomes a public nuisance. No insult is intended. No endearment either.

Israeli technology & ethnic cleansing

Gaza 2014- Israeli technology

A friend sent me a video put out by the rightwing Zionist group StandWithUs. It’s of a cocky Israeli smart-aleck taunting the BDS movement by reciting all the technological inventions of Israel including Intel chips in computers, anti-virus programs, cell phone technology, the batteries in electric cars, generic medications. The arrogant message is we can’t live without Israeli invention. He forgot to mention Israel’s inventiveness in military weaponry which is very much involved in India’s murderous assault on Kashmir.

Being thick as you-know-what, he was unaware of his obvious appeal to the Jewish supremacism that Zionism is rooted in or its repugnant affinity & political association with white supremacism. He was too racist to know he can’t publicly say he “couldn’t find any Palestinian inventions.” That would be because so much of Palestinian culture was appropriated by Israeli settlers as their own heritage & this dipshit doesn’t know the difference. But mostly it’s because Palestinians are fighting an unarmed life & death struggle against Israeli colonialism & ethnic cleansing armed with the advanced technology of US militarism. Nothing for anyone to brag about here. There’s only shame.

It appears StandWithUS isn’t in the vanguard of public relations about Israel because many of them have been trying so hard by showing up at civil rights protests & through rabbi Michael Lerner (the guy who spoke at Mohammad Ali’s memorial) to disassociate from obvious racism & portray themselves as champions of justice. But for our building BDS, it’s good they’re too stupid & rabid to know that & instead choose to strut their arrogant supremacy.

This photo from Israel’s 2014 carpet bombing siege of Gaza is a young boy in Rafah, Gaza looking for belongings midst the rubble of his house. This is how Israel chooses to uses its vaunted technology.

(Photo by Hatem Ali/AP)

Pellet injuries in Kashmir

Pellet injuries Aug 7 2016

Pellet injuries 3 Aug 7 2016

Pellet injuries in Kashmir: But it’s okay because Indian military officials “feel very sorry for them” & only use pellets as the “least lethal” option. Tell that rubbish to an international human rights crime tribunal & see if they buy it.

Stop the use of pellet guns. End the occupation. Self-determination for Kashmir.

Media coverage of use of pellet munitions in Kashmir

Although there is hardly any media coverage of the Indian siege in Kashmir, especially in European & US media, there is a fair amount about the monstrous use of pellet munitions. That gives solidarity activists an opening for educational forums, panels, & rallies about the occupation.

Just because media doesn’t cover it, that doesn’t mean it has lesser importance. Media is also clammed up about most of the US wars. Silence is how it serves the Pentagon. Instead of war journalism, we get photos of a department store fire in Kabul, women taking a short cut through a cemetery in Kandahar province, Afghanistan. Instead of reporting on the occupation in Kashmir, we get photos of women’s prayer rituals. There is no reporting on Iraq, Somalia, Pakistan or Libya.

There was very little coverage of US & UK-trained forces in Bahrain using pellet guns on unarmed protesters but India’s use of them in Kashmir is so profligate & so extreme that it has actually broken the news blackout to some degree.

With contemptible false pity, a leading Indian military official said “We feel very sorry for them” for injuries caused to young people but said they would continue to use pellets as the “least lethal” option. He should be slapped with hundreds of criminal indictments including for targeting the young, for shooting at unarmed protesters, for causing permanent injury & death. The government of India should face an international tribunal for decades & tens of thousands of human rights crimes, of which pellet munitions are only one.

This is a FB wall you may want to follow about the book “Kashmir, Scars of Pellet Guns”, written by Kashmiri human rights activist Mannan Bukhari who has done extensive work around pellet munitions.