Capitalism is destroying Earth. We need a new human right for future generations

There is no business to be done on a dead planet.

The children on climate strike are right: their lives should not be sacrificed to satisfy our greed

At the heart of capitalism is a vast and scarcely examined assumption: you are entitled to as great a share of the world’s resources as your money can buy. You can purchase as much land, as much atmospheric space, as many minerals, as much meat and fish as you can afford, regardless of who might be deprived. If you can pay for them, you can own entire mountain ranges and fertile plains. You can burn as much fuel as you like. Every pound or dollar secures a certain right over the world’s natural wealth.

UPDATE 05.04.2019: UN expert on torture expresses alarm at reports founder Julian Assange may be expelled imminently from in London, saying he intends to personally investigate case. UN expert on right to plans to meet founder Julian Assange on 25 April after receiving assurances from Government of that it will facilitate his visit. UK foreign secretary Hunt has just said it should be an “international taboo of the highest order” to “detain” journalists, while 2 miles from his office the only arbitrarily detained (according to U.N. senior body) journalist in Europe is being held. Will media challenge the FCO and such hypocrisy??? Today , and Special Envoy on Media Freedom Amal Clooney discussed how we can reverse the trend of violence against journalists. Question is who is WE?

CHECK at least once a day: LIVE from Ecuadorian Embassy in London amid reports of Assange's asylum withdrawal

WHY OPPOSING JULIAN ASSANGE’S EXTRADITION TO THE U.S. MATTERS FOR EUROPEAN DEMOCRACY

Free World is guilty of doing nothing to end the torture of Julian Assange (rightclick/view to enlarge) - infograph: defendAssangeWikileaks

BRIEFING FOR THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE

March 2019

Summary

“Organisations like WikiLeaks have laid bare countless state secrets, revealing the often grubby workings of power”. (Thorbjorn Jagland, Secretary General, Council of Europe, November 2016)[1]

The Trump Administration has confirmed that the US government has charged WikiLeaks’ publisher Julian Assange and that it seeks his extradition from the UK.[2]  In the US, he faces life in prison. The US actions are a serious threat to European freedom of expression, media and sovereignty.

  • The United Nations has repeatedly called for Assange to walk free.
  • Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other leading human rights organisations have released statements categorically opposing Assange’s extradition.
  • The city of Geneva recently passed a resolution calling for Assange to be granted asylum.

Parliamentary Members of the Council of Europe should:

  • Oppose Assange’s extradition to the US.
  • Ensure that the Council of Europe raises this case in its procedures and champions the issue in its work on media freedom
  • Press the UK government to find the solution to this issue which is available (see below)

Especially poorer countries suffer since long from the U.S.-imposed "immunity"-regulations protecting U.S.American military and civilian personnel that come as part of any parcel of U.S."Aid" - shielding their crimes ranging from fraud, ivory smuggling, rapes to murder as well as war crimes and crimes against humanity.

'Change your course!': Pompeo threatens ICC over US war crimes probe

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is vocal cord of Trump to the nations.
In an effort to threaten everyone into not investigating US or Israeli war crimes in the International Criminal Court, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says anyone involved in such probes will lose their visa and may be sanctioned.
 

The Washington war hawk said that action had to be taken because any investigation into alleged war crimes and torture committed by the United States would be a threat to US rule of law. Visas will be pulled or denied for anyone who has been involved in or even requested an ICC investigation of “any US personnel.

The ICC is currently mulling over a request to investigate possible war crimes committed by the US in Afghanistan in the course of the nearly 20-year conflict which has left over 100,000 Afghans dead. The international court prosecutor’s office says it has “reasonable basis” to believe that “war crimes and crimes against humanity” were, and continue to be, committed by foreign government forces in Afghanistan.

The International Community and the UN must stop Indonesian military attacks in West Papua

West Papuan genocide committed by Indonesia while the inrternational community looks away.

By ULMWP - March 12, 2019

West Papuans beg for UN intervention as 2,650 Indonesian commandos hunt down freedom-fighters and the Jakarta government blocks emergency food water and medical supplies to highland villagers

Today another 650 Indonesian commandos joined the 2000-strong war machine transported to the Central Highlands in December 2018 after the Indonesian Parliament declared war on the West Papua National Liberation Army.

The government also escalated the impact of its December legislation by blocking all the emergency food water and medicines supplied by local churches and NGOs for the past three months to the Nduga, Kenyam, Yigi, Mbua, and Mapunduma districts.

By Thomas Mountain (*) - 11. March 2019

Since the US-fleet lost Mombasa/Kenya as harbour and never could use their newly built war-harbour at Kismayo in Somalia they tried to get a marine base in Eritrea. But the Eritreans didn't want them and that's why since then Eritrea has been in the cross-hairs of the U.S. military complex.

On February 28, 2019 the last financial wire transactions between the small socialist country of Eritrea and all the western countries were stopped with no further wire transfers in USD$ or Euros to or from Eritrea being allowed .

UNjust and illegal UN sanctions against Eritrea were lifted recently but the damage being done continues. During the 9 year long UN sanctions period the US shut down all Eritrean government bank accounts and cut off all access to USD$ international transfers. The USA and its European lackeys even tried to prevent Eritreans in the diaspora from paying their national 2% income tax (something all US citizens outside the country must do), critical to the creation and survival of the country.

After being kicked out of the dollar market Eritrea’s next turn was to the EU to no avail. The EU would not allow Eritrea access to international euro transfers so Eritrea was forced to fall back on her only international friend, Russia, as a conduit for  international banking transactions in Euros.

SEX & DRUGS & ROCKnROLL AT THE HELM OF SOUTH AMERICA

No time to read and study in order to understand or to find an answer to the question: Why does the USA want to impose their kind of "democrazy" on Venezuela? - JUST WATCH 2:40 Minute CLIP

For later updates go to THE VENEZULA FILES II, and THE VENEZUELA FILES IV

LISTEN WHILE READING: They Don't Care About Us

Guaido greeting his relatively small crowd of supremacist right-wing followers with a Nazi salute.

Update 09. March 2019: (vf) Agitator Guaido's rally today looked more like a school-yard gathering with him blasting through a megaphone like an auctioneer. But he didn't elaborate to his crowd that he already has promised to foreign corporations to auction state-run entities and enterprises.

The political crisis in Venezuela has come to an impasse, with Nicolas Maduro refusing to budge and opposition leader Juan Guaido, backed by a string of Western and South American countries, so far failing to mobilise enough compatriots to oust the president. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has pledged to respond to acts of "imperial aggression" as the county braces for pro and anti-government protests scheduled on the same day.

"The US empire, once again, underestimates the conscience and determination of the Venezuelan people. I assure you that every attempt [to express] imperial aggression will be met with a forceful response from the patriots that we love and defend, with courage, our Homeland," Maduro said on Saturday.

By Ramzy Baroud - 7 March 2019

A commemorative plaque for the Namibian victims in the Garnisons cemetery in Berlin, Germany, placed on Jul. 7, 2015. | Photo: EFE

The Herero and Nama peoples demanded compensation for damages over genocide and property seizures by German colonists.

On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Laura Taylor Swain rejected a lawsuit requiring Germany to pay damages over genocide and property seizures by its colonists, who carried out a racial extermination campaign against the Herero and Nama peoples in the first years of the 20th century in present-day Namibia.

The Manhattan judge said that Germany is immune from claims by descendants of the Herero and Nama peoples, depriving her of jurisdiction over its role in what happened in German South West Africa, a colony of the German Empire from 1884 until 1919.

Herero leader Vekuii Rukoro said Judge Taylor Swain made errors in her analysis and the tribe would make sure the decision was reversed on appeal, adding that "we have directed our lawyers in New York to proceed with immediate effect." The plaintiffs' attorney Kenneth McCallion said he will discuss new options for legal action with his clients.

Landscapes such as this example of natural beauty in Uganda are under threat unless action is taken.

On Africa Environment Day and World Wildlife Day today, Max Gomera warns of the real challenge facing conservationists

Until people can eat, wildlife will decline

By Max Gomera - TI - 3 March 2019

In Mirera village in Kenya, farmers are threatening to kill scores of wild animals that have been invading their farms, unless authorities contain them within two weeks. In Laikipia county, there are fears of food shortage following destruction of crops by elephants and increasing concern over wildlife-related deaths.

These are not isolated incidents. Across the world, a slow creep of smallholder and mega-farms is taking place, with agriculture moving into lands that were formerly wildlife range. As more humans encroach on wildlife sanctuaries, deaths on both sides are increasing, with wildlife locked in a battle it cannot win. While AK47 laden poachers are often framed as the chief threat to the wildlife of the world, a far more mundane risk needs to be addressed: the troubled co-existence of farmers and wildlife.

Addressing this crisis must start by building a new truce between rural communities, governments and the global conservation movement. The benefits and the risks of protecting wildlife should be shared by all three, rather than putting the full burden and few of the benefits on local people. That way, nature is seen as having a value to farmers’ co-existence with wildlife, rather than a threat to their crops and livestock.

John Pilger: 'Defy the Thought Police', Stand With Assange

Demonstrators demanding freedom for Julian Assange at Ecuadorean embassy | Photo: Reuters

John Pilger says of Assange that the room he's held in resembles "Room 101" from the famous novel "1984" by George Orwell.

By John Pilger - 3. March 2019

Whenever I visit Julian Assange, we meet in a room he knows too well. There is a bare table and pictures of Ecuador on the walls. There is a bookcase where the books never change. The curtains are always drawn and there is no natural light. The air is still and fetid.

This is Room 101.

Before I enter Room 101, I must surrender my passport and phone. My pockets and possessions are examined. The food I bring is inspected.

The man who guards Room 101 sits in what looks like an old-fashioned telephone box. He watches a screen, watching Julian. There are others unseen, agents of the state, watching and listening.

Not all migrants crossing an international border are refugees, but all refugees are also migrants.

Migration-related torture:

One of the greatest tragedies of our time

Without any doubt, the torture and abuse suffered by millions of migrants in all parts of the world is one of the greatest tragedies of our time.

The undeniable links between irregular migration and torture are manifold and deeply troubling.

Not only is the risk of torture and violence one of the most important “push-factors” causing countless people to flee their country of origin, it is also a frightening and pervasive reality of most irregular migration routes and, most shockingly, even of the treatment they receive by the very countries to which they turn for protection.

Q: What exactly is “Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment”?

A: In essence, ANY violation of physical, mental or emotional integrity that is incompatible with human dignity. > It is not complicated & it can never be justified... ever!

DOWNLOAD THE FULL REPORT AS PDF

Melzer, N. (2019). Migration-related torture: One of the greatest tragedies of our time. Torture Journal, 29(1), 125-126. https://doi.org/10.7146/torture.v29i1.114047

Migration policies can amount to ill-treatment and torture, UN rights expert warns

Study: Warming Oceans Cause Fish Decline As High as 35%

The decline of the sustainable catch of 124 fish and shellfish species has been directly linked to warming of the world’s ocean. | Photo: Reuters

By ts - 1 March 2019

Researchers compared the changes in 235 fish and shellfish populations across 38 ocean regions that have occurred from 1930 to 2010 - a 4% decrease.

A new study concludes that climate change is adversely affecting the quantity of fish in the oceans. The scientists also noted that overfishing, specifically in the Sea of Japan region - where the decline is as high as 35%, has significantly added to the problem.  

“We were surprised at the strength the impact of warming has already had on fish populations,” study lead author and University of California Santa Barbara ecologist Chris Free, stated.

Researchers compared the changes in 235 fish and shellfish populations across 38 ocean regions that have occurred from 1930 to 2010 - a 4% decrease.

In 2016, 171 million tons of fish were taken from the sea, and that number is trending to rise to 201 million in the next 10 years.

Tanzania Plans to Deforest 150.000 ha of its Largest Forest this Summer

Selous Reserve Tanzania. This area, twice the size of Berlin will be deforested by 17 companies this summer, if the diastrous project is not stopped.

Tanzania will be going ahead with a $3 billion logging project in the middle of the Selous Game Reserve – a Unesco World Heritage Site, and one of the most iconic wildlife areas in Africa, if the project is not stopped. Alternatives must be offered to Tanzania now.

Seventeen local companies have been awarded tenders to clear 1 500 square kilometres (150.000 ha) of terrain – an estimated 2.6 million trees, to an expected value of $62 million. The estimated size of Tanzania’s deforestation project is more then twice the size of Berlin.

The purpose is to make way for the Stiegler’s Gorge hydropower project, which will see the construction of the largest dam in Tanzania along the Rufiji River.

Reaching 130 meters (427 feet) in height and stretching 700 meters across the Stiegler's Gorge canyon, the dam is to create a 1,500 square kilometers (463 square mile) lake. An area roughly twice the size of Berlin will be deforested and will vanish under water.

Sign the petition: Keep loggers out of Selous Game Reserve!

Chagos Islands Atoll

UPDATE 22.05.2019: 116 to 6 vote at the UN that UK must decolonise the Chagos Islands immediately. See the UK's moral standing - its 5 allies in the entire world were Trump's USA, self-confessed Apartheid-state Israel, ScoMo's climate change denying Australia, Viktor Orban’s near fascist Hungary and the ultra corrupt Maldives. The 193 United Nations member states on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to demand the UK hand over control of the Chagos islands to Mauritius "as soon as possible".
A total of 116 countries voted in favour of a non-binding resolution presented by African countries that urged Britain to "withdraw its colonial administration" from the Chagos Islands within six months. USA-vassals Germany, Canada and France were among the  56 other nations that abstained apart from those absent.
The Brits, however, maintained their stiff upper lip and Britain insists it has sovereignty over the archipelago, which it calls the British Indian Ocean Territory, despite the fact that already in February, the International Court of Justice handed Mauritius a victory when it said in a legal opinion that Britain had illegally split the islands and should give up control of the Chagos. After Britain rejected that ruling, Mauritius turned to the UN General Assembly to press for action.
Britain evicted about 2,000 people from the archipelago in the 1960s and '70s to make way for a huge US military base on Diego Garcia, which played a key strategic role in the Cold War before being used as a staging ground for US bombing campaigns against Afghanistan and Iraq in the 2000s. The facility was used as a CIA interrogation centre after the September 11, 2001 attacks. In 2016, Britain renewed a lease agreement with the US for the use of Diego Garcia until 2036.
But it has to end now and the evicted Chagossians must take their homeland back - NOW!

How Britain forcefully depopulated a whole archipelago

Diego Garcia, the largest island in the Chagos archipelago in the Indian Ocean, is the site of a major US military base and was leased from Britain in 1966 [Reuters]

And managed to cover it up.

by
 
There are times when one tragedy tells us how a whole system works behind its democratic facade and helps us understand how much of the world is run for the benefit of the powerful and how governments often justify their actions with lies.
 
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the British government of Harold Wilson expelled the population of the Chagos Islands, a British colony in the Indian Ocean, to make way for an American military base on Diego Garcia, the largest island. In high secrecy, the Americans offered the British payment for the islands in the form of a discount on the Polaris nuclear submarine system.
 
The truth of this conspiracy did not emerge for another 20 years when secret official files were unearthed at the Public Record Office in London by lawyers acting for the former inhabitants of the coral archipelago. Historian Mark Curtis described the enforced depopulation in Web of Deceit, his 2003 book about Britain's post-war foreign policy.
 
The British media all but ignored it; the Washington Post called it a "mass kidnapping".
 
I first heard of the plight of the Chagossians in 1982, during the Falklands War. Britain had sent a fleet to the aid of 2,000 Falkland Islanders at the other end of the world while another 2,000 British citizens from islands in the Indian Ocean had been expelled by British governments and hardly anyone knew.
 
The difference was that the Falkland Islanders were white and the Chagossians were black and, crucially, the United States wanted the Chagos Islands - especially Diego Garcia - as a major military base from which to command the Indian Ocean.
 
The Chagos was a natural paradise. The 1,500 islanders were self-sufficient with an abundance of natural produce, and there was no extreme weather. There were thriving villages, a school, a hospital, a church, a railway and an undisturbed way of life - until the secret 1961 Anglo-American survey of Diego Garcia led to the expulsion of the entire population.
 
The expulsions began in 1965. People were herded into the hold of a rusting ship, the women and children forced to sleep on a cargo of bird fertiliser. They were dumped in the Seychelles, where they were held in prison cells, and then shipped onto Mauritius, where they were taken to a derelict housing estate with no water or electricity.
 
Twenty-six families died there in brutal poverty, nine individuals committed suicide, and girls were forced into prostitution to survive.
 
I interviewed many of them. One woman recalled how she and her husband took their baby to Mauritius for medical treatment and were told they could not return to their island. The shock was so great that her husband suffered a stroke and died. Others described how the British and Americans gassed their dogs - beloved pets to the islanders - as an inducement to pack up and leave. Lizette Talate told me how her children had "died of sadness". She herself has since died.
 
The depopulation of the archipelago was completed within 10 years and Diego Garcia became home to one of the biggest US bases, with more than 2,000 troops, two bomber runways, 30 warships, facilities for nuclear-armed submarines and a satellite spy station. Iraq and Afghanistan were bombed from the former paradise. Following 9/11, people were "rendered" there and tortured.
 
After demonstrating on the streets of Mauritius in 1982, the exiles were given the derisory compensation of less than 3,000 British pounds each by the British government. When declassified British Foreign Office files were discovered, the full sordid story was laid bare.
 
One file was titled Maintaining the Fiction and instructed British officials to lie that the islanders were itinerant workers, not a stable indigenous population. Secretly, revealed the files, British officials recognised they were open to "charges of dishonesty" because they were planning to "cook the books" - lie.
 
In 2000, the High Court in London ruled the expulsions illegal. In response, the Labour government of Tony Blair invoked the Royal Prerogative, an archaic power invested in the Queen's "Privy Council" that allows the government to bypass parliament and the courts. In this way, the government hoped, the islanders could be prevented from ever returning home.
 
The High Court finally ruled that the Chagossians were entitled to return. In 2008, the Foreign Office appealed to the Supreme Court. Although based on no new evidence, the appeal was successful. I was in the House of Lords - where the court then sat on the day of the judgement. I have never seen such shame-faced judges in what was clearly a political decision.
 
In 2010, the British government sought to reinforce this by establishing a marine nature reserve around the Chagos Islands. The ruse was exposed by WikiLeaks, which published a US embassy diplomatic cable from 2009 that read, "Establishing a marine reserve might indeed, as the FCO's [Colin] Roberts stated, be the most effective long-term way to prevent any of the Chagos Islands' former inhabitants or descendants from resettling."
 
 
A group of refugees from the Indian Ocean island of Chagos gather outside the High Court in London on October 31, 2002. They are seeking compensation from the British government for forcibly removing them to make way for the Diego Garcia US military base 30 years ago [Reuters/Michael Crabtree]
 
Whether or not the ICC delivers justice that is long overdue, an indefatigable campaign of islanders and their supporters shows no sign of giving up.
 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

'First, they took the religion. Now they want to build a railroad'

Riikka Karppinen has been campaigning against the project since she was 15. Photograph: Joel Redman/The Guardian

Will a railway across Europe’s last great wilderness create new jobs – or destroy the Sami people’s ancient way of life? Another Anglo-American disaster in the making.

Jussa Seurujärvi, 22, momentarily stops helping his father, 51, and sister, 16, pull up fishing nets from holes in the ice to take in the long, slow Arctic sunrise, which glows with pastel strokes of yellows, purples and pinks. His brow furrows slightly and he says with a gentle determination: “I want to continue living from this land just as my ancestors have done for hundreds and hundreds of years. This is a way of life for us – it is not just a job.”

His father quickly dispatches five prized white fish and a slimy looking burbot ensnared in the net. Almost every part will be used by the family, with even the burbot’s muddy-green scales destined for his mother’s handicrafts. “The Sami way has always been that you take what you need – you don’t take any more,” says Seurujärvi.

This is the scared heart of the Sami homeland in the upper reaches of Finnish Lapland. It is a largely pristine landscape of forests, marshes, scree-covered fells and deep, clean lakes. Often described as Europe’s last great wilderness, it is also home to lynxes, brown bears, wolverines and golden eagles. Thousands of tourists come every year to enjoy the unspoiled nature and marvel at wonders such as the northern lights; more than 100,000 foreign visitors, including 22,000 British tourists, passed through the region’s capital, Rovaniemi, in December 2017.

Indestructable "In-Dio" Chavinista

By John Pilger -

Travelling with Hugo Chavez, I soon understood the threat of Venezuela. At a farming co-operative in Lara state, people waited patiently and with good humour in the heat. Jugs of water and melon juice were passed around. A guitar was played; a woman, Katarina, stood and sang with a husky contralto.

“What did her words say?” I asked.

“That we are proud,” was the reply.

The applause for her merged with the arrival of Chavez. Under one arm he carried a satchel bursting with books. He wore his big red shirt and greeted people by name, stopping to listen. What struck me was his capacity to listen.

June 2019
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