Archive for February 16th, 2016

16/02/2016

Collapse of Iraqi Kurdistan

Human Wrongs Watch

By Andre Vltchek*

14 February 2016 (RT) – It used to be presented as a huge success story. We were told that in the middle of a ravished Middle East, surrounded by despair, death and pain, a land of milk and honey was shining brightly like a torch of hope.
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©Andre Vltchek | Source: RT

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Or was it more like a delicious cake surrounded by rot? This exceptional place was called Iraqi Kurdistan, or officially the “Kurdistan Region.”

This is where the victorious global capitalism has been injecting “massive investments,” while the West was “guaranteeing security and peace.

Here, Turkish firms were building and financing countless projects, while their road tankers and later a pipeline, were moving mind-boggling quantities of oil toward the West.

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16/02/2016

Big War Lords Playing Brinkmanship Game in Syria

Human Wrongs Watch 

By Baher Kamal*

15 February 2016 (IPS) – When 25 million Syrians–half of them refugees either abroad or at home and the other half terrorised by daily bombing, learnt that major world leaders in their meeting in Germany launched an unprecedented confrontation threatening with unleashing World War III, instead of easily agreeing on a ceasefire to alleviate their inhumane suffering, they most probably fell into an even deeper desperation. See what happened.

Fighter aircraft from Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and the United States attacked oil refineries in eastern Syria controlled by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, Sept. 24, 2014. | Credit: DoD graphic

Fighter aircraft from Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and the United States attacked oil refineries in eastern Syria controlled by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, Sept. 24, 2014. | Credit: DoD graphic | Wikimedia Commons

Two of the biggest “official” warlords on Earth—the Russian military apparatus and the US Pentagon and its “allies”–Europe, the US-led NATO, the Saudi Arabia-led Gulf countries, and Turkey, have just walked a step closer to the edge of the Middle East abyss over the weekend during their Munich Security Conference.

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16/02/2016

Young and Female: A Double “Strike” for Women Entering the Workforce

Human Wrongs Watch

By Azita Berar Awad and Ann Miles*

For decades promoting gender equality and empowering women has been on the development agenda. We know that empowering women, and particularly young women, to make their own choices for an active participation in the economy makes a difference on so many fronts.**
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© Li Wenyong / World Bank | Source: ILO

The research shows an abundance of positive links. And yet it’s clear that another generation of young women remains outside the reach of what should be their full economic and self-empowerment potential.

A new ILO report based on an analysis of school-to-work transition surveys (SWTS) in more than 30 developing countries concludes that being young and female continues to pose a double challenge for the current generation of young women looking to find decent jobs.
16/02/2016

A Lady With A Smile

Human Wrongs Watch

By Uri Avnery*

13 February 2016

IT IS not easy to be an Arab in Israel.

It is not easy to be a woman in Arab society.

It is not easy to be an Arab in Israeli politics.

And even less easy to be an Arab woman in the Knesset.

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Uri Avnery

Haneen Zuabi is all these together. Perhaps because of this she wears a perpetual smile – the smile of somebody who has won, after all.

It can be very annoying, this smile. Annoying and provocative.

These days, Zuabi has achieved something no Arab woman in Israel ever dreamed of: the whole country is talking about her. Not for an hour, nor for a day, but for weeks on end.

The vast majority of Jewish Israelis hate her guts. Zuabi’s smile is triumphant.

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16/02/2016

“Liberated” Afghanistan: Casualties Hit Record High 11,000 in 2015 – UN Report

Human Wrongs Watch

The United Nations on 14 February 2016 reported that Afghan hostilities in 2015 left more than 3,500 civilians dead, including an unprecedented number of children – one in four casualties over the past year was a child – and nearly 7,500 others wounded, making this the highest number of civilian casualties recorded.

The Taliban has taken territory in Khanabad district in the Afghanistan province of Kunduz on the other side of a bridge pictured here in August 2015. Photo: Bethany Matta/IRIN

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“This report records yet another rise in the number of civilians hurt or killed. The harm done to civilians is totally unacceptable,” said Nicholas Haysom, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan and head of the UN Assistance Mission in the country (UNAMA), in a press release.

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16/02/2016

“Conflicts and Violence Take ‘Huge Toll’ on Children in 2015”

Human Wrongs Watch

Iincreasingly complex and widening conflicts have taken a huge toll on children in much of the Middle East in 2015, with parts of Africa and Asia facing protracted and relapsing wars that show no signs of abating, a senior United Nations child rights official on 15 February 2016 said.

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A boy holds a large piece of exploded artillery shell, which landed in the village of Al Mahjar, a suburb of Sana’a, the capital of Yemen. Photo: UNICEF/Mohamed Hamoud

Describing in her annual report to the UN Human Rights Council how extreme violence affected countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Nigeria and Syria, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict,

Leila Zerrougui, stressed that groups perpetrating extreme violence particularly targeted children.

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16/02/2016

The Human Rights: A Permanent Challenge

Human Wrongs Watch

By Johan Galtung*

15 February 2016 – TRANSCEND Media Service – The Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 10 December 1948–the two Conventions of 16 November 1966 are international law–was edited by a committee of Men; Older, White, Bourgeois, Lawyers, French. MOWBLF.

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Johan Galtung

Nothing about women’s and children’s rights; wait till the 1980s.

The perspective focuses on individuals, not collectives, peoples.

There are no rights to access to toilet, nor to sexuality: well- mannered bourgeois do such things but do not talk-write about it. Art. 27.2 even protects remuneration for professionals like themselves.

The “human rights=legal claims” discourse defines underdog goals but is silent on topdog goals: status quo.

Their justification: “If they rise, they will treat us the way we treated them”. Revenge.

In a conflict discourse, all parties have to be heard, for solutions. But the legal discourse is DMA–Dualist-Manichean-Armageddon; two parties, rights vs wrongs, final battle in the Supreme Court. No accommodation to legitimate concerns of the losing side. The winner takes all.

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