03/01/2023

US in Proxy War with Russia Doles out 100 Billion Dollars in Aid and Arms to Ukraine

Human Wrongs Watch

UNITED NATIONS, Jan 2 2023 (IPS)* – A US Senator once described Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, perhaps facetiously, as “a Winston Churchill in a tee shirt”.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy (on screen) of Ukraine, addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in Ukraine. “We are dealing with a State that is turning the veto of the United Nations Security Council into the right to die”, President Zelynskyy warned. If it continues, countries will rely not on international law or global institutions to ensure security, but rather, on the power of their own arms. April 2022. Credit: UN Photo/Loey Felipe

And last month, when he addressed the US Congress – with the presence of about 100 Senators and 435 Congressmen – he tried to re-live that moment.

While most of the Senators and Congressmen were in business suits for the formal occasion, Zelensky opted for green military fatigues and a matching sweatshirt. Continue reading

27/12/2022

South Sudan: Amidst ‘Unimaginable Suffering’, over 260,000 in Need Slated for Humanitarian Support

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)* — UN humanitarian chief Martin Griffiths released from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) on Thursday [], $14 million for direct assistance to 262,521 South Sudanese affected by increased violence and severe flooding.

Waves of fighting have displaced families in the Upper Nile State in South Sudan. (file)

© UNICEF/Phil Hatcher-Moore | Waves of fighting have displaced families in the Upper Nile State in South Sudan. (file)

Interconnected shocks have had a devastating impact on the most vulnerable, said the UN humanitarian office, OCHA.

“This funding will support reducing people’s vulnerability and protection risks through activities implemented by the United Nations humanitarian agencies in South Sudan”, stated Sara Beysolow Nyanti, Humanitarian Coordinator for South Sudan.

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27/12/2022

Horn of Africa Faces Most Severe Drought in More than Two Generations – UNICEF

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)* — The number of children suffering from dire drought conditions across Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia has more than doubled in five months, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Thursday [].

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 A ten-month-old boy is treated for severe malnutrition at a hospital in Puntland, Somalia.
© UNICEF/Grace Ekpu | A ten-month-old boy is treated for severe malnutrition at a hospital in Puntland, Somalia.

Around 20.2 million children are under threat of severe hunger, thirst and disease – compared to 10 million in July – as climate change, conflict, global inflation and grain shortages devastate the region.

“While collective and accelerated efforts have mitigated some of the worst impact of what had been feared, children in the Horn of Africa are still facing the most severe drought in more than two generations”, stated UNICEF Deputy Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa Lieke van de Wiel.

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27/12/2022

100 Million Displaced, ‘a Record that Should Never Have Been Set’

Human Wrongs Watch

A hundred million people were forced to leave their homes in 2022. The UN continued to help those in need in a myriad of ways, and push for more legal, and safe ways for people to migrate.

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2022 UNRWA | School children in Jenin refugee camp, West Bank.

The 100 million figure, which includes those fleeing conflict, violence, human rights violations and persecution, was announced by the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) in May and described by Filippo Grandi, the head of the agency, as “a record that should never have been set”.

The figure is up from some 90 million in 2021. Outbreaks of violence, or protracted conflicts, were key migration factors in many parts of the world, including Ukraine, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Syria, and Myanmar.

Thousands of desperate migrants looked to Europe as a preferred destination, putting their lives in the hands of human traffickers, and setting off on perilous journeys across the Mediterranean.

All too often these journeys ended in tragedy.

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25/12/2022

Vandana Shiva: Bill Gates Is Promoting ‘Surveillance Agriculture’

Human Wrongs Watch

By Suzanne Burdick, Ph.D. | The Defender – TRANSCEND Media Service*

Vandana Shiva and Russell Brand discussed the history of agriculture, the role of Big Food in the current global cost-of-living crisis and how Gates is promoting “basically a surveillance agriculture.”

5 Dec 2022 – Prior to World War II, big corporations had no role in growing food, according to Vandana Shiva, Ph.D. “Growing food was an act of care, an act of love,” she said.

Today’s food and agriculture system is “very violent,” Shiva — environmental activist, author and founder of Navdanya International — told comedian and political commentator Russell Brand on a recent episode of his show, “Stay Free with Russell Brand.”

After World War II, “The same corporations that made chemicals for Hitler’s concentration camps [and] poison gases for the war started to trade in food as a commodity, rather than food as nourishment and food as life,” Shiva said. Continue reading

23/12/2022

Forget About All This Humanitarian Blah Blah (And Buy More Weapons)

Human Wrongs Watch

MADRID, Dec 22 2022 (IPS)* – Day after day, international humanitarian organisations launch desperate appeals for funding to continue saving some of the many lives at high risk. When they get a handful of dollars –even just one million– from a rich country, they welcome it as manna from heaven.
Sales of arms and military services by the 100 largest companies in the industry reached 592 billion US dollars in 2021, a 1.9% increase compared with 2020 in real terms. Such an increase marked the seventh consecutive year of rising global arms sales

Sales of arms and military services by the 100 largest companies in the industry reached 592 billion US dollars in 2021, a 1.9% increase compared with 2020 in real terms. Credit: Shutterstock

Not only the available funding for humanitarian aid is already short, but next year will also set another record for humanitarian relief requirements, with 339 million people in need of assistance in 69 countries, an increase of 65 million people compared to the same time last year, the United Nations and partner organisations on 1 December 2022 said.

“The estimated cost of the humanitarian response going into 2023 is US$51.5 billion, a 25% increase compared to the beginning of 2022.” Continue reading

21/12/2022

Inculcating the “Military Virtues”: The Pentagon’s Predatory Role in U.S. High Schools

Human Wrongs Watch

By Richard E. Rubenstein – TRANSCEND Media Service

On December 11, 2022, the New York Times broke a front-page story about “J.R.O.T.C,” the Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps, described as “a program funded by the U.S. military designed to teach leadership skills, discipline, and civil values – and to open students’ eyes to the idea of a military career.”  The well-researched Times article has the air of a dramatic expose, although the facts it presents have been known for years.

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Richard E. Rubenstein

This Pentagon program, now enrolling more than half a million “cadets” in some 3,500 high schools across the United States, was founded during World War I and has greatly expanded since the 1970s.  

It is no coincidence that this expansion took place simultaneously with the development of the “all-volunteer” armed forces introduced by President Richard Nixon at the end of the Vietnam War. 

The use of conscription to raise forces for that war not only generated a massive antiwar movement among youth at risk of being drafted, it also produced a dissension-ridden, unreliable U.S. Army.

By 1973, ending the draft seemed to American rulers little more than common sense. But how, then, to ensure that young people willing to risk their lives in imperial adventures would volunteer in numbers sufficient to maintain the largest, most far-flung military establishment in human history?  Continue reading

21/12/2022

Iran: US Sanctions Violating Human Rights of All Living There: UN Independent Experts

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)* — US sanctions on Iran are resulting in harm to the country’s environment and preventing everyone there – including migrants and Afghan refugees – from fully enjoying their rights to health and life, and contributing to other factors such as rising air pollution, UN-appointed independent experts said on Tuesday [].

Hakim Expressway, Tehran, Iran.

Unsplash/Mehrshad Rajabi | Hakim Expressway, Tehran, Iran.

“Like many countries, Iran has environmental issues. The sanctions not only prevent the Iranian Government from addressing them effectively; they contribute to making the challenges worse,” the group of Special Rapporteurs and the Independent Expert on international solidarity, said in a statement.

Air pollution is a particular concern and reportedly causing higher levels of respiratory and other diseases among residents, that lead to an estimated 4,000 premature deaths per year in the capital Tehran and 40,000 premature deaths annually across the country.

20/12/2022

UK: ‘Demonising victims of trafficking and modern slavery, turns the public against them and legal methods for keeping them safe, leaving them vulnerable to extremist attacks’

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)* — Demonising victims of trafficking and modern slavery, turns the public against them and legal methods for keeping them safe, leaving them vulnerable to extremist attacks, independent UN human rights experts on warned, urging the United Kingdom to step up its efforts to protect survivors.

The Palace of Westminster and central London, as seen from across the River Thames.
UN News/Omar Musni | The Palace of Westminster and central London, as seen from across the River Thames.

The credibility of victims of trafficking and contemporary forms of slavery – including migrants and nationals – is now under attack in the UK, the Human Rights Council-appointed experts warned, in a statement published on Monday.

‘Unsubstantiated claims’

“We are alarmed by the rise in unsubstantiated claims by public officials and Government departments regarding persons seeking protection under the Modern Slavery Act and the National Referral Mechanism in the past days and weeks,” they said.

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19/12/2022

Migrants? ‘Don’t You Dare Come Here, Unless…’

Human Wrongs Watch

MADRID, Dec 19 2022 (IPS)* – When tens of thousands of Europeans had to flee the horrors of two born-in-Europe devastating armed conflicts that attracted other powers: the World Wars I and II, they migrated to the Americas and other Western countries in search of safe haven.
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"There is no migration crisis; there is a crisis of solidarity" says UN Secretary-General, António Guterres. Credit: Credit: UNOHCR

“There is no migration crisis; there is a crisis of solidarity” says UN Secretary-General, António Guterres. Credit: Credit: UNOHCR

Upon their arrival at their destination, they were checked at the border and admitted to enter as useful workforce.

Seldom, if ever, anybody classified them as “illegal” migrants. Those human beings were fleeing the horrors of those wars.

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