Modi as human shield

Tweeted by Salute Kashmiris June 8 2017

Is this right? No, it isn’t. We’re not like the oppressors. But is it funny from a revenge point of view? Immensely. And not bad when it comes to justice either.

–photo tweeted by Salute Kashmiris

“The most disappointing thing about the UK election is there wasn’t even a hint of Russian interference. It’s like we don’t matter at all.”

–tweeted by Karl Sharro @KarlreMarks

Speculations abound about why Qatar was iced by Saudi coalition

So many speculations about why Qatar was iced by the Saudis & other GCC nations. So many attempts to portray Qatar as a victim of plots hatched in the White House. That’s what happens when you don’t distinguish regimes from the working people they lord it over.

Qatar is a damn monarchy & was part of the military operation against Yemen which has been a merciless slaughter. Just because Al Jazeera publishes a progressive point of view every once in a while, so what? So does the Russian propaganda agency RT & Iranian propaganda agency Press TV.

This disunity in the Middle East is important because working people in Qatar will be made to pay a heavy price. But please spare us the delusions that the monarchy is being punished for some supposed righteousness. Be assured the royal mooches won’t miss a single meal.

Those who begrudge Comey’s testimony because of the “Russia thing” don’t do so because they love Russian music or literature, supported the revolution or the dissidents against Stalinism, or don’t care about Russian interference in US politics. They don’t do it because they oppose the FBI’s pernicious role in US politics. They do it solely to buttress their support for Russia’s counter-revolutionary role in Syria.

The Comey hearing is more boring than chasing dust bunnies under your furniture. Right now the Texas Republican John Cornyn is interrogating Comey. He’s the despicable guy who campaigned for expeditious deportation of undocumented Mexican & Central American children who he associated with prostitution & drugs. The very sight of him makes my skin crawl.

Aung San Suu Kyi regime maintains concentration camps for Rohingya in Arakan state

Rohingya girl with thanaka powder (REUTERS:Soe Zeya Tun) June 8 2017

This little girl is a Rohingya living in one of Myanmar’s 36 camps for internally displaced persons in Arakan (Rakhine) state which were set up after the ethnic cleansing assault of 2012. The powder on her face is thanakha powder traditionally used for cosmetic & sun-blocking purposes.

The estimates of Rohingya confined to these camps range from 121,000 to 147,000. An estimated 54-percent of them are children. They are really concentration camps operated very much like Indian reservations in the US prior to the civil rights movement since Rohingya are not allowed to leave & have to live in makeshift shelters with little access to food, education, or healthcare.

After the Kofi Annan dog & pony commission, the Aung San Suu Kyi regime moved to close down the camps as the commission recommended. To show how compromised the Annan commission is with the regime, Annan told the Reuters news agency “It’s really about time they close the camps & allow people, particularly those who have gone through the [citizenship] verification process, access to freedom of movement & all rights of citizenship.” Annan knows full well that Myanmar will not allow Rohingya to even apply for citizenship without renouncing their ethnicity & claiming they are undocumented “Bengali” trespassers.

Thus far, the Suu Kyi regime has closed three of the 36 camps, involving a few hundred families, mostly Kaman Muslims in Rakhine & Buddhists, who were affected by the military onslaught against Rohingya Muslims. They were given small stipends to relocate because as citizens of Myanmar they have freedom of movement & rights to employment & housing. Rohingya Muslims have no such rights & it is excluded that they will be released from the concentration camps to return home. It would also be extremely dangerous for them since Arakan state is under a state of siege by the Myanmar military.

We stand in solidarity with the Rohingya people in demanding the Suu Kyi regime close down the concentration camps & allow Rohingya Muslims full democratic, human, & citizenship rights.

(Photo by Soe Zeya Tun/Reuters)

Civilians fleeing Mosul Apocalypse

Mosul civilians fleeing (Ivor Prickett for The New York Times) June 8 2017

Mosul Apocalypse, Emancipation US-style:

Images from west Mosul look very much like images of east Aleppo which Assadists claim was liberated by Syrian & Russian bombers: mountains of cement rubble.

What will it take to understand that “liberation” is not done by bombers & special forces? At what point did antiwar forces begin to consider Syrian & Russian bombers as freedom fighters in Aleppo? Is there any possible way US bombers & Iraqi special forces can be seen as freedom fighters in Mosul?

These are civilians fleeing aerial & ground bombardment in west Mosul just days ago. Principled antiwar activists denounce the carpet bombing of civilians even under the guise of fighting ISIS. The US Pentagon has to be held to account for delivering over $1 billion of weapons to ISIS, according to an audit by the US Department of Defense.

The only principled demand is for the immediate, unconditional withdrawal of all US & foreign military forces from Iraq & Syria & to end the weapons supply lines to ISIS.

(Photo by Ivor Prickett for The New York Times)

Mosul Apocalypse: Emancipation US-style

Civilians displaced by fighting between the Iraqi forces and Islamic State militants walk past destroyed houses in Mosul's al-Zanjili's district. REUTERS:Erik De Castro June 8 2017

Mosul apocalypse, Emancipation US-style: the operation is called “We Are Coming, Nineveh” since the ancient city of Nineveh was on the outskirts of modern-day Mosul.

When the operation began last October, US intelligence estimated the number of ISIS fighters in the whole of Mosul at 3,000 to 5,000 fighters. A higher estimate from an Iraqi source was 7,000 to 8,000 fighters. In March, Iraqi forces reported at least 1,000 were killed, presumably in the battle for east Mosul, many had fled, & hundreds had surrendered. Iraqi forces have not released the number of ISIS fighters who surrendered because it’s likely most were shot on the spot or handed over to CIA operatives for delivery to a torture center.

Media coverage of Mosul is down to a trickle but Iraqi military officials now report ISIS is “trapped” & that there are 8,000 ISIS fighters left in west Mosul. So after nearly nine months of ground & aerial bombardment & the forced evacuation of hundreds of thousands of civilians, is the “We Are Coming, Nineveh” operation more like Aleppo than a liberation?

These are civilians running for their lives from fighting between Iraqi forces & ISIS fighters on the ground & US airstrikes in west Mosul.
The way to liberate Mosul from ISIS urban guerrillas is not indiscriminate bombardment of civilians but cutting off the weapons supply lines which are apparently not diminished by being “trapped” by Iraqi, Kurdish, & US-coalition forces.

The only principled demand for antiwar forces is to demand the immediate, unconditional withdrawal of all foreign military forces from Iraq & Syria.

(Photo by Erik De Castro/Reuters)

In preparation for the Comey testimony, one of his associates said he is “the consummate public servant committed to doing the right thing.” Should we then forget the role of the FBI exposed by COINTELPRO lawsuits? The role of FBI agents in disrupting the antiwar, civil rights & women’s movements? Or speaking personally, that then-FBI agent Colleen Rowley flagged my criminal record for using a Weapon of Mass Destruction making it impossible for me to work?

The FBI, like the CIA, is an undemocratic agency that operates in secret & neither have a place in democratic societies. Here’s hoping Comey’s testimony nails Trump for some impeachable crime so we can be done with him, rid of him. But there’s no reason to make Comey a man of integrity in the process.