Missing Persons and the GWoT

Many innocent people have been ‘disappeared’ in the course of the United States Global War of Terror.    Many innocent men have been swept from the Streets of Pakistan and Afghanistan, Iraq and other places associated with U.S. wars.   Here is Amina Masood Janjua telling her story.   Her story is powerful because, before her husband’s abduction, her family was like most of ours, a middle class family with a comfortable life.   Her husband was a business man who traveled, he was a Pakistani Muslim like so many others, almost everyone in that country, and he did not support any fanatical religious organizations or causes.   He was just a guy.

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#Enough & Blue Scarves on International Peace Day

Yesterday was International Peace Day.   In the morning, I participated in a Global Day of Listening phone conversation with the Afghan Peace Volunteers, a group of Afghan youth who, with their mentor Dr. Hakim Young, have opened a Borderfree Community Center in Kabul and school for street children.   They celebrated International Peace day with the launch of a new international campaign for building a network of peace around the globe.   #Enough is a campaign to say that We have had #Enough of war and violence.   These are young people who have never lived in a world at peace.   Wars have raged in Afghanistan throughout their entire lives.   And they are not the only ones.

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The EU Refugee Crisis Flows From Western Wars

The so called “EU Migrant Crisis” has received heavy news coverage, but little contextual information has been forthcoming.    Over the last several months, there has been increasing coverage of the flow of migrants coming across the Mediterranean, mostly from Libyan ports. The current crisis of thousands of refugees flooding into the EU through Turkey and Eastern Europe has not […]

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International Red Cross Report on Conditions in Yemen

This is the central city of the Houthi tribes from which the leadership of Ansarullah are are drawn.  The video was posted in early July.  Since then the aerial bombing has continued for nearly two months, and the ground fighting has increased. Yemen: ICRC calls for better access to civilians affected by continuing violence posted by the International Committee of […]

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Petition with 110,000 Signatures Rejected by White House

A year ago, I signed a petition on ‘We the People‘, a White House website, requesting President Obama to intercede on behalf of Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani national currently detained at Carswell prison in Texas, with an 86 year sentence.  The petition asks that she be repatriated to Pakistan.

It has, to date, received 110,407 signatures, including my own.   Yesterday, I received an email response to the petition, which says, in part:

Thank you for signing this petition concerning Dr. Aafia Siddiqui, who in September 2010 was sentenced to 86 years in prison for attempted murder and other crimes

As the We the People Terms of Participation explain, to “avoid the appearance of improper influencethe White House may decline to address certain procurement, law enforcement, adjudicatory, or similar matters properly within the jurisdiction of federal departments or agencies, federal courts, or state and local government.”

That’s why we’re declining to comment on the specific request raised in this petition.

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Messages from Iraq: Refugees in Cankiri Turkey

As I write I am looking out a bus window at a beautiful landscape of rolling hills and mountains. Everything is green, and the trees are budding. It is hard to know where to begin. In the past week, I have traveled hundreds of miles by bus and train in order to visit Iraqi refugees living here. Eskisehir, Ankara, Bolu, Mersin and now Cankiri. Some of the families are refugees twice over, having fled to Syria where we first met them some years ago. Others fled more recently after ISIS took Mosel last June and then the surrounding villages. Some of them I was meeting for the first time. Muslims, Christians and Palestinians, all from Iraq.

Last night Iraqi friends, refugees themselves, took me to a family I had not yet met. I thanked them for receiving me and explained how many people come with me on this trip wanting to know how he and his family are doing.

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Afghanistan and the Arena of Ideas

by Dr. Hakim / Dr. Wee Tek Young, cross posted from Countercurrents.org “You didn’t know about the decision of the Singapore government to join the fight against ISIS ?” she asked. I was catching up with another Singaporean, Lynette ( a pseudonym to respect her privacy ), who had previously worked in Kabul and who was back in Afghanistan to […]

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Bombs Away! Drones In the Sky

For a while it seemed that the drones project had been restrained following a flood of public criticism last year.   Reports from United Nations Special Rapporteurs, and mainstream NGOs like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International clearly documented violations of International Humanitarian and Human Rights Law by Drone strikes in Pakistan and Yemen, countries the US is not at war […]

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The Non-Useful Atrocities

 by Eva Bartlett reprinted from Zero Anthropology  This article  looks into the dark side of the Syrian war.  It begins with names and stories of Middle Eastern reporters killed by rebel forces, reporters like Yara Abbas, who is pictured below.   Eva,  goes on to report civilian descriptions of atrocities committed by opposition forces in Syria.    And this is just a […]

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