Warning: preg_match() [function.preg-match]: Unknown modifier 't' in /home/content/16/9506716/html/wp-content/plugins/mobile-website-builder-for-wordpress-by-dudamobile/dudamobile.php on line 603
2010 November 2 | Activist News

The Road to World War 3

  More »

Edward Snowden

Open Letter To Obama

July 26, 2013 President Barack Obama The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20500 Re: Civil Disobedience, Edward J. Snowden, and the Constitution Dear Mr. President: You are acutely aware More »


U.S. Companies Pay Just One-Third Of The Legal Tax Rate: GAO Study

Huffington Post July 1, 2013 By Mark Gongloff Big, profitable U.S. companies paid an average federal tax rate of less than 13 percent in 2010, according to a new study — or More »

jeff olsen

Man Tried for Chalk Drawings Found Not Guilty

NBC San Diego July 1, 2013 By Christina London The man accused of vandalism for drawing with chalk outside banks has been found not guilty on all charges. A jury returned its More »


The Bigger Story Behind the AP Spying Scandal

Washington’s Blog/Global Research May 20, 2012 By George Washington Attack on the Press You know that the Department of Justice tapped scores of phone lines at the Associated Press. You might have More »

Daily Archives: November 2, 2010

UN investigator: Migrants suffer worst racism

Associated Press
November 2, 2010

UNITED NATIONS – Migrants in Europe, the United States and many other parts of the world are subjected to the worst forms of racial discrimination and xenophobia, a U.N. independent investigator said Monday.

Githu Muigai, a Kenyan lawyer, said many other groups are also victims including ethnic minorities attacked because of their minority status, individuals stopped and searched because of their perceived religious or ethnic background, and soccer players insulted because of their color.

He reiterated his opposition to Arizona’s controversial immigration law because it compromises basic international human rights that migrants are entitled to.

Muigai, the U.N. Human Rights Council’s special investigator on racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and intolerance, spoke to reporters after presenting reports to the General Assembly on efforts to eliminate these practices.

“If I have found any specific group of people to be the subject of the most insidious contemporary forms of racial discrimination, those are migrants,” he said. “And I think in many parts of the world today, immigrants bear the brunt of xenophobic intolerance — and this is true of the United States, and it is of Europe, and it is of many parts of the world.”

Muigai said international law doesn’t prevent any country from enforcing “a fair, open, transparent migration policy.” And he said he appreciates the need for countries, especially in southern Europe, to deal with immigrants arriving illegally by sea from Africa and other parts of the world.

“All I have been saying in my reports is that we need to develop systems, structures, and policies in an international legal environment in which we can address the legitimate concerns of the receiving states while being able to safeguard the fundamental humanity, in my judgment, of the immigrants,” he said.

Muigai said he is concerned that the Arizona law, now been challenged in a federal appeals court, “does not respond to minimum human rights standards.”

The law targeting illegal immigration requires police enforcing another law to question a person about his or her immigration status, if there is “reasonable suspicion” that the person is in the United States illegally. It also makes it a state crime to be in the country illegally.

“This is the sort of statute that opens a floodgate, equips a policeman or such other law enforcement person on the beat with such immense powers as to compromise, in my view, the very, very fundamental human rights that ought to be enjoyed in such an enlightened part of the world as Arizona,” Muigai said.

He urged all countries to ensure that migration policies are “at all times consistent with international human rights instruments.”

Full Article Here – http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101102/ap_on_re_us/un_un_racism_and_immigration

Uganda: Mobile Technology Doubles HIV Treatment Rate in Babies

November 1, 2010

By Esther Nakkazi

Kampala — HIV-infected babies have had their diagnosis time cut from three months to two weeks thanks to a mobile phone-based technology.

Infants with HIV need to begin medication as soon as possible to maximise their chances of survival. The Early Infant Diagnosis (EID) system enables central hospital laboratories to send results directly to an SMS printer in local clinics, according to Charles Kiyaga, an EID coordinator at Uganda’s Ministry of Health, which has piloted the scheme.

Blood samples are taken from infants at their local clinics and sent to central laboratories for the HIV test. The test results are then returned using the system’s computer software over the mobile-phone network back to the local clinic and straight to a printer. They can thus be sent instantly even to remote areas that have no Internet access.

“The printout has the infant’s information and the HIV results, and the data is handled in confidence by health-centre workers at their local clinic and only disclosed to the parents or guardians of the infant,” said Kiyaga, who presented the results at the 4th National Paediatric HIV/AIDS Conference in Kampala (28-30 September).

The platform can be used with any mobile-phone provider, according to Kiyaga. The only requirement is that the printer is in an area with network access.

Only seven laboratories in Uganda are equipped to test infants’ blood for HIV infection, so blood samples are sent there from all over the country.

The results are usually returned to local health centres by mail but that can take up to three months because health centres often lack the transport needed to collect them regularly from local post offices.

Full Article Here – http://allafrica.com/stories/201011020106.html

Sudan arrests nine Darfur activists-civic leader

November 1, 2010

KHARTOUM, Nov 1 (Reuters) – Sudan arrested nine Darfur activists including a prominent human rights lawyer, just weeks ahead of a southern referendum on secession, a civil society leader said on Monday.

“The total number arrested is nine activists — all of them from Darfur,” said civil society leader Elbaqir Mokhtar. “One of them is a very active lawyer in the Darfur lawyer’s association,” he added.

He said the arrests appeared to be targeting the Human Rights and Advocacy Network for Democracy (HAND), for which most of those detained worked. Mokhtar said there was no information about charges against them or where they were being held.

A source in Sudan’s National Security and Intelligence Services said they had no information about the arrests.

New York-based Human Rights Watch said the government was using the cover of the Jan. 9, 2011 southern referendum on independence as a cover to continue its military operations in Darfur and crack down on rights activists.

“This spate of arrests signals a new crackdown on Darfuri activists at a time when the Khartoum government is stepping up attacks there, while the world’s eyes are on the referendum,” Jehanne Henry, a senior researcher at the group said.

Mokhtar said the arrests began on Saturday but continued until last night.

President Omar Hassan al-Bashir’s government forced many prominent human rights activists to flee Sudan in 2009 after the International Criminal Court indicted him for war crimes in Darfur. The court added genocide to the charges this year.

Full Article Here – http://www.reliefweb.int/rw/rwb.nsf/db900sid/SNAA-8AT7FA?OpenDocument&RSS20&RSS20=FS&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ReliefwebUpdates+%28ReliefWeb+-+Latest+Updates%29

Voter Intimidation in Wisconsin

November 2, 2010
By Brendan Fischer’s 

The progressive advocacy group One Wisconsin Now has uncovered a plan by the Wisconsin Republican Party, Americans for Prosperity, and local Tea Party groups to engage in what One Wisconsin Now is calling a “voter suppression” scheme. The GOP and tea party groups have denied the existence of such a plan, instead claiming that their efforts are aimed at preventing alleged “voter fraud.”

The voter suppression charge arises from right-wing groups training “election observers” to challenge people they somehow suspect of voting fraudulently in Wisconsin’s elections. Americans for Prosperity is paying for a series of mailings, targeted at communities of color, to assemble a list of “ineligible” voters that tea party election observers will challenge at the polls. Such challenges are not only intimidating and intrusive, but contribute to long lines at polling stations, further discouraging voters.

The practice is called “vote caging,” where pieces of mail are sent to registered voters, and a list of “ineligible voters” are compiled from those whose mail is returned as undeliverable. The persons whose name does not match their listed address are accused at the polls of being a fraudulent voter. The Wisconsin GOP made a similar effort in the 2004 elections, announcing plans to challenge 37,180 voters deemed “ineligible” on a caging list developed by the party, and targeting Milwaukee (the city with the largest proportion of racial and ethnic minority citizens in the state). The non-partisan City Attorney and Election Commission stopped the GOP’s plan, and determined that the voters the GOP deemed “ineligible” had a mismatch between the name and address due to clerical errors such as an incorrect apartment number, the lack of an apartment number, or that the person had simply moved.

Voter Fraud Widely Exaggerated

A spokesperson for Wisconsin’s Government Accountability Board (the state body charged with overseeing elections) tells The Nation that the groups concerned about voter fraud have a “complete and total delusion that minorities are voting more than once. There’s absolutely not one shred of evidence, no conviction, no charges, no nothing of that nature in the state of Wisconsin. I am aware of absolutely no activity like that.”

Full Article Here – http://www.prwatch.org/node/9568

Broad Coalition Rallies for BP Accountability

November 1, 2010
By Dahr Jamail

BATON ROUGE, Louisiana, Nov 1, 2010 (IPS) – Gulf coast fishers, conservationists, seafood distributors and oil workers rallied here at Louisiana’s capital over the weekend to demand that oil giant BP be held accountable for the “ongoing” use of toxic dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico.

“We don’t have the open sores and blisters caused by BP’s toxic dispersants that the people in Plaquemine’s Parish have,” Karen Hopkins from Grand Isle, Louisiana told IPS. “We are being poisoned by BP’s same dispersants, but our symptoms are more lethargy and depression symptoms caused by chemical poisoning.”

Hopkins, who works for Dean Blanchard Seafood, a large and well-known seafood distributor, was a member of the Oct. 30 Rally for Gulf Change, whose organisers said they were working towards “preserving our God-given rights to clean air and water for future generations.”

Drew Landry, who describes himself as “a songwriter who works for a commercial craw-fisherman”, told IPS that he first grew concerned about BP’s mishandling of the oil disaster, which began on Apr. 20 when the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, by what he saw the oil giant do the following day.
“I played a concert in New Orleans on Apr. 20, and the next morning went to take one of the classes on how to clean oil,” Landry told IPS. “I realised it was not about cleaning oil, but rather BP’s effort to get a roster of names of commercial fishermen from whom they’d have to defend themselves against in the future.”

The organisers and speakers at the rally that was held on the steps of the state capitol building on a sunny Saturday were most concerned with BP’s massive use of toxic dispersants to sink the oil. The dispersants were also injected at the wellhead to keep most of the oil from reaching the surface.

BP used Corexit 9500 and Corexit 9527, both of which are banned in Britain and at least 19 other countries. Chemicals released from the combination of crude oil and dispersants can cause health problems that include central nervous system depression, respiratory problems, neurotoxic effects, genetic mutations, leukemia, birth defects, cardiac arrhythmia, and cardiovascular damage, among many others.

“I’ve had lung problems, auto-immune problems, nausea, headaches, and bronchitis because of BP’s disaster,” Beverly Armand from Grand Isle told IPS. “When I leave the area it clears up, and when I go back, I get sick again.”

Armand said her doctor has placed her on three different antibiotics, none of which has been very effective, and had her blood tested for hydrocarbons.

“My creatine level is high, and they found creosote in my blood,” she explained. “And we still have fresh oil coming in, and BP is still spraying Corexit. The stuff they are calling algae is foam caused by the dispersants.”

Protesters held signs that read “Hell No It’s Not Over”, “Ban Corexit Now”, and a drawing of a pelican with the words “I want my life back” – the last also a reference to comments by the former chief executive of BP, Tony Hayward, which were widely deemed insensitive to struggling Gulf residents.

Organisers told IPS that several people were unable to attend the rally because the interstate 10 highway from Lafayette was closed due to a chemical spill.

Susan Price, a small business owner from Chauvin, Louisiana, told IPS that she has been suffering from health problems since she was exposed in August to chemicals she believes are from the oil disaster.

“I’m worried for my grandchildren,” Price said at the rally. “The seafood is woefully under-tested for toxins, while the government and BP are patting themselves on the back for a job well done. We will not be lulled, be silenced, or stand down. We will fight to protect our people and our land.”

James Miller, a commercial fisherman from Mississippi, told onlookers that he found oil and dispersants in the water while fishing recently.

“I’ve had diarrhea, vomiting, the sweats, and been hospitalised for three days,” said Miller, who worked 73 days for BP as an oil spill responder. “I’ve seen the dead turtles, dead birds, dead dolphins and dead fish, and I’ve taken people out on my boat to show them the oil. It’s still there, and I can tell you the seafood is not safe to eat.”

Later that afternoon, the group convened a meeting at the Manship Theatre in downtown Baton Rouge.

Rob Coulan, a businessman from Harvey, Louisiana, spoke of neuro-toxic side effects of the dispersants that have been well documented since at least 1987. “BP knew what this stuff would do long before they ever used it in the Gulf,” he said. 

Full Article Here – http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=53423

‘Cove’ activist boycotts dolphin town meeting

November 1, 2010

Dolphin activist Ric O’Barry, the central figure in the Oscar-winning eco-documentary “The Cove”, on Tuesday boycotted a meeting with Japan’s dolphin-hunting town of Taiji, labelling it a “sham.” 

O’Barry, a former dolphin trainer for 1960s TV show “Flipper”, on Tuesday appeared in front of a public hall where the meeting was supposed to take place with Taiji Mayor Kazutaka Sangen and environmental activists.

But O’Barry, now an activist with the Earth Island Institute, abruptly left without meeting participants, claiming that organisers broke promises to allow him to have a “frank dialogue” by imposing restrictions on media coverage.

“This conference has turned out to be a total sham,” O’Barry said in a statement. “I will not take part in it in any way. I will boycott this whole disgraceful set-up.”

Every year fishermen in Taiji herd about 2,000 dolphins into a secluded bay, select several dozen for sale to aquariums and marine parks and slaughter the rest for meat, a practice long deplored by animal rights campaigners.

Full Article Here – http://uk.news.yahoo.com/18/20101102/tsc-cove-activist-boycotts-dolphin-town-e123fef.html

Cluster bomb stockpiles ‘being destroyed’

November 1, 2010
By Alastair Leithead

Three months after an international treaty banning cluster bombs came into force, stockpiles are already being destroyed by signatories to the convention, a monitoring group says.

More than 100 countries have agreed to ban the weapon, which scatters hundreds of smaller bombs over a wide area.

They are blamed for causing civilian casualties both at the point of impact and for years afterwards by remaining armed and in effect becoming landmines.

Some 108 states have signed the treaty.

The legally-binding agreement also holds countries liable for clearing areas where the bombs were dropped.
‘Sea change’
In its first annual report, the Cluster Munition Monitor says seven countries have so far destroyed their supplies and two have cleared the areas where the bombs were dropped.

“The main message from the report is this is working – the movement to ban cluster bombs is working,” said Thomas Nash, co-ordinator of the Cluster Munition Coalition.

The group of non-governmental organisations has lobbied hard to persuade countries to destroy their stockpiles of the weapons and to prevent their use and production.

The Convention on Cluster Munitions came into force in August and comes into full effect in the UK on Monday, which is now legally bound to clear places such as the Falkland Islands, where cluster bombs were used, within 10 years, and to destroy stockpiles within eight years.

Almost half the UK’s cluster munitions have already been destroyed, the report said.

“Four years ago diplomats were saying it was impossible to get a ban on cluster bombs, but within four years we have brought about a complete sea change in government opinion around the world and brought about a new piece of international humanitarian law, the most important since the ban on landmines,” added Mr Nash.

“The depository of the convention is the UN secretary general, but it was negotiated outside the traditional disarmament forum which was stale and unproductive, and I think that’s been an important lesson. If things aren’t working in a traditional mechanism we find another way.”

The report says of the signatories, only 42 nations have so far ratified the treaty, and the US, which is thought to have the world’s biggest stockpile of cluster bombs, has said it will keep them for a decade and has so far refused to sign.

Full Article Here – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-11663612

For first time ever, US facing scrutiny of UN Human Rights Council

November 1, 2010

The United States will come under the spotlight at the UN’s top human rights assembly’s for the first time over the coming week along with other countries that face scrutiny by the Human Rights Council.

The 12-day session of the 47 member council starting on Monday will include regular “universal periodic reviews” of 16 members of the United Nations, including the United States on November 5.

Several dozen non governmental organisation are expected to lobby the debate on the US human rights record, while Washington will also defend its record.

Some 300 US civil liberties and community groups in the US Human Rights Network on Monday called on the Obama administration to bring “substandard human rights practices” in the United States into line with international standards.

The United States only agreed to join the Council in May 2009, after the Bush administration had shunned the body which replaced its similar though discredited predecessor, the UN human rights commission, in 2006.

The Network produced a 400-page report criticising “glaring inadequacies in the United States? human rights record,” including the “discriminatory impact” of foreclosures, “widespread” racial profiling and “draconian” immigration policies.

“Advocates across America have not only documented substandard human rights practices which have persisted in the US for years, but also those that reflect the precipitous erosion of human rights protections in the US since 9/11,” said Sarah Paoletti of the Network.

Full Article Here – http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/11/face-scrutiny-human-rights-council/