Category Archives: War

Gunmen in Brazil caught on video shooting at Indigenous Guarani

By Rick Kearns, April 18, 2014. Source: Indian Country Today Media Network

Photo: Aty Guasu/Survival International

Photo: Aty Guasu/Survival International

Hired gunmen firing at Guarani in Brazil were filmed recently by the indigenous people who are continuing their struggle to regain stolen territory.

According to Survival International (SI), which posted the video on their website, gunmen have been terrorizing the Guarani of Pyelito Kue since they returned to their ancestral land last month, years after the government had officially recognized their right to move back, forcing the rancher on that land to move out.

On Monday, April 7 they filmed two armed men shooting at them “in broad daylight.”


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Filed under Indigenous Peoples, Latin America-Caribbean, Political Repression, War

Ethiopian military opens fire on resettled communities

April 4, 2014. Source: Ethiopian Satellite Television

A squad of the Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF) that has travelled to the Southern Omo region of Ethiopia to quell the month long fights between the Bodi and Konso communities has on April 2, 2014 fired heavy weapons on the Bodi people wounding many. Among the wounded, at least 17 elderly women, children and youth are attending medical treatment in Hana Health Centre in Jinka, Southern Ethiopia, the Omo Peoples Democratic Unity (OPDU) office told ESAT.

The Administrator and the Deputy Administrator of Selamago Woreda are in a row with the Head of the Security Head of the area following the actions taken by the ENDF.

According to OPDU, the Konso elders have complained to the officials “When you resettled us here, you told us that you have talked with the people and that everything was alright. However, after we have come here we faced several clashes. Despite our progresses in resolving our conflicts via peaceful and traditional methods, you have taken such a reckless measure which could dim our hope of living together after now. ”

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Filed under Africa, Indigenous Peoples, Land Grabs, Political Repression, War

Call climate change what it is: violence

By Rebecca Solnit, April 7, 2014. Source: The Guardian

Will our age of climate change also be an era of civil and international conflict? Photograph: Amr Abdallah Dalsh / Reuters

Will our age of climate change also be an era of civil and international conflict? Photograph: Amr Abdallah Dalsh / Reuters

If you’re poor, the only way you’re likely to injure someone is the old traditional way: artisanal violence, we could call it – by hands, by knife, by club, or maybe modern hands-on violence, by gun or by car.

But if you’re tremendously wealthy, you can practice industrial-scale violence without any manual labor on your own part. You can, say, build a sweatshop factory that will collapse in Bangladesh and kill more people than any hands-on mass murderer ever did, or you can calculate risk and benefit about putting poisons or unsafe machines into the world, as manufacturers do every day. If you’re the leader of a country, you can declare war and kill by the hundreds of thousands or millions. And the nuclear superpowers – the US and Russia – still hold the option of destroying quite a lot of life on Earth.

So do the carbon barons. But when we talk about violence, we almost always talk about violence from below, not above.

Or so I thought when I received a press release last week from a climate group announcing that “scientists say there is a direct link between changing climate and an increase in violence“. What the scientists actually said, in a not-so-newsworthy article in Nature two and a half years ago, is that there is higher conflict in the tropics in El Nino years, and that perhaps this will scale up to make our age of climate change also an era of civil and international conflict. Continue reading

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Filed under Climate Change, Corporate Globalization, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, War

Doubling tar sands production for imperial war

By MacDonald Stainsby, March 11, 2014. Source: Counterpunch

TransCanada_Energy_East_Pipeline_ProjectThe continuation of the North American master plan for energy continues unabated. The newest pipeline– along with the corridor pipeline through Toronto to Montréal and the Atlantic Coast in Maine that Line 9 is a component part of–could facilitate the doubling of tar sands crude available to distribute daily in a short number of years. Well over a million barrels a day (1.1 according to the proposals) alone would flow through the “Energy East” pipeline to a Saint John terminal –including the refinery owned by Irving, the traditional oligarchy that believe they own large sections of the Maritimes.

Current geopolitical struggles involving western imperial nation-states are demanding a re-shuffling of the global energy deck. Tar sands are looking more and more like the Fortress North America strategic military reserves– enough crude to ride out the next phase of US imperial strategy. Russia–and perhaps Venezuela–are on a collision course with the West, and Canada is not impartial nor hiding in the wings on either front. Continue reading

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Filed under Climate Change, Corporate Globalization, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Politics, War

“Democracy” needs whistleblowers. That’s why I broke into the FBI in 1971

By Bonnie Raines, January 7, 2014. Source: The Guardian

J Edgar Hoover helped Richard Nixon gain power in the US. Photo: Bettmann/CORBIS

J Edgar Hoover helped Richard Nixon gain power in the US. Photo: Bettmann/CORBIS

I vividly remember the eureka moment. It was the night we broke into an FBI office in Media, Pennsylvania, in March 1971 and removed about 1,000 documents from the filing cabinets. We had a hunch that there would be incriminating material there, as the FBI under J Edgar Hoover was so bureaucratic that we thought every single thing that went on under him would be recorded. But we could not be sure, and until we found it, we were on tenterhooks.

A shout went up among the group of eight of us. One of us had stumbled on a document from FBI headquarters signed by Hoover himself. It instructed the bureau’s agents to set up interviews of anti-war activists as “it will enhance the paranoia endemic in these circles and will further serve to get the point across there is an FBI agent behind every mailbox.”

That was the first piece of evidence to emerge. It was a vindication.

Looking back on what we did, there are obvious parallels with whatEdward Snowden has done in releasing National Security Agency documents that show the NSA’s blanket surveillance of Americans. I think Snowden’s a legitimate whistleblower, and I guess we could be called whistleblowers as well.
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Filed under Actions / Protest, Media, Political Repression, Politics, Vietnam War, War

The plight of the Chagossians

By Jennifer Kennedy, January 2, 2014. Source: Intercontinental Cry

NASA astronaut image of Diego Garcia Atoll, Chagos Archipelago, British Indian Ocean Territory Photo: Image Science & Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center

NASA astronaut image of Diego Garcia Atoll, Chagos Archipelago, British Indian Ocean Territory Photo: Image Science & Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center

“I had two dogs. They were my companions. During low tides they would catch fish and retrieve them to me on the shore. My heart still hurts when I remember the day they took the dogs from us to put in the incinerator. We were afraid and convinced that we could have the same fate if we did not obey.” The testimony of Rita Bancoult, a former inhabitant of the Diego Garcia.

South of the equator in the Indian Ocean lies the Chagos Archipelago, a string of small coral islands surrounded by a turquoise sea teeming with aquatic life. This small cluster of atolls was once home to some 2,000 Chagossians who had lived there for generations. The Chaggossians, also known as the Chagos Islanders, were descendants of Madagascan, Mozambican, and Senegalese slaves brought to the islands in the late 1700s and early 1800s. The most populated island was Diego Garcia and the islanders lived by working the coconut plantations, farming on small plots of land, and fishing for lobster.

Speaking to IC, Bernadette Dugassee, who now lives in exile in the UK but lived on Diego Garcia until she was two-years-old, recalls how both her parents worked shifts at the plantation and every week the whole community would celebrate with a big dance.

But in the late 1960s the early 1970s everything changed for the Chagossians when the British Government forcibly evicted them from the islands.
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Filed under Land Grabs, Oceans, War

On the Passing of Nelson Mandela

From www.amandla.org.za

Nelson Mandela

Unknown

“Some are born great,
some achieve greatness,
and some have greatness thrust upon them.”
William Shakespeare

Amandla! does not believe in miracles. Mandela is not immortal. He has
lived the fullest of lives. Amandla! stands with his family, the ANC
(the organisation he lived and died for), his closest comrades,
especially the surviving Treason Trialists and Robben Island
prisoners, the South African people as well as millions of people
around the world to mark the passing of a great man.

Yet Mandela was no God, no saint but a man of the people. He reaffirms
that people born of humble beginnings can rise and achieve
extraordinary feats. Victory is possible against all odds.

Mandela had all Shakespeare’s attributes of greatness. It is with this
sense that the South African nation, such as it exits, in its
divisions, polarisations and inequities pays tribute to a man that
dedicated his life to the liberation of his people.

People who never knew Mandela have woken up to a sense of numbness,
you only feel when told of the death of one’s closest. This is how
most of Venezuela felt with the death of Chavez. Strangely in this
divided nation, a nation still under construction and at times
deconstructing, Mandela’s passing will almost universally be mourned.

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Filed under Africa, Political Repression, War

The VT war economy has spoken

Note: The proposed basing of new F35 fighter jets at the Burlington, VT airport has been extremely controversial and hotly contested as many have uncovered the vast range of health, social and environmental impacts these earsplittingly loud and polluting jets will have on the surrounding community.

I used to live 9 miles from the Burlington airport, on the other side of some tall hills.  Every night from inside my home I heard the F15 fighter jets taking off.  The awful noise from those old jets is apparently nothing compared to the new ones.  Yet the entire Vermont Congressional delegation–Patrick Leahy, Bernie Sanders and Peter Welch–plus the Governor–all support this new horror.  So much for Vermont’s “quality of life.”

–Anne Petermann for the GJEP Team

By Thia Sands, October 30, 2013

On Monday night two resolutions to ban F35 military jets from being based at the Burlington airport were defeated by the Burlington (VT) City Council.  My family and I were there. The hall was filled to capacity on two levels. We were in the balcony.

Some 350 Guard members and their supporters, many bused in by the military, arrived more than an hour before the meeting and filled the level where the Council sat, and where the public had to approach the microphone, and also some of the seats upstairs. They signed up their people to speak.

New rules were then announced by the Council President as the meeting began. Burlington residents who had never before voiced an opinion on the issue to the Council would speak first. Participants had been sorted accordingly, and all of the F35 basing opponents who had spoken in the past were sidelined. For the two hours we were there, we heard from members of the Guard about why the public was indebted to their “service,” and about how the economy of the airport was dependent on them, and how a vote against the F35 was a vote against their families and all they had done for us.

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, War

Biomass energy takes share of $7 billion in U.S. Army contracts

Note: Yay!  A green military!  We can kill people responsibly now!

–The GJEP Team

By Anna Simet, September 24, 2013. Source: Biomass Magazine

Out of 52 bids submitted to acquire a share of $7 billion in energy contracts offered by the U.S. Army, 13 biomass companies have been selected.

Contract awardees include Acciona Energy North America Corp., Chicago, Ill.; ECC Renewables LLC, Burlingame, Calif.; EDF Renewable Energy, San Diego, Calif.; Emerald Infrastructure, San Antonio, Texas; Energy Answers International Inc., Albany, N.Y. ; EIF United States Power Fund IV L.P., Needham, Mass.; Energy Management Inc., Boston, Mass.;  Honeywell International Inc., Golden Valley, Minn.; MidAmerican/Clark Joint Venture, Bethesda, Md.; Pacolet Milliken Enterprises Inc., Spartanburg, S.C.; Siemens Government Technologies Inc., Arlington, Va.; Stronghold Engineering, Riverside, Calif., and Energy Systems Group LLC, Newburgh, Ind.

Contracts are indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, firm-fixed-price, non-option, non-multi-year, with a cumulative maximum value of $7 billion.  Facilities will be designed, financed, constructed, operated and maintained by private sector entities on private land or on installations under jurisdiction of the Department of Defense.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers-Engineer Support Center in Huntsville, Ala., is the contracting activity.

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Filed under Bioenergy / Agrofuels, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, False Solutions to Climate Change, Green Economy, Greenwashing, War

Visit to Palestine exposes environmental, human rights injustices of Israeli occupation

October 14, 2013. Source: Friends of the Earth International 

A four day high-level Friends of the Earth International visit to Friends of the Earth Palestine (also known as PENGON) concluded on October 13th,when Friends of the Earth International chair Jagoda Munic presented a report during a press conference in Ramallah.

The report, “Environmental injustice and violations of the Israeli occupation of Palestine” [1] documents some of the environmental injustice that a Friends of the Earth International delegation observed in 2012.

Friends of the Earth International deplores the confiscation of land, taking control of water resources, buildingof illegal settlements, restrictions to freedom of movement, dumping of solid and liquid waste including hazardous and nuclear waste, and the movement of banned hazardous industries from Israel to occupied Palestinian land.
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Filed under Climate Change, Land Grabs, Political Repression, War