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Picket Amnesty International "Freedom" Café Monday 20th August 1pm

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International Youth Day to Condemn Imperialist Aggression

 

Anti-imperialists in Ireland will be gathering outside the Amnesty International "Freedom" Café, 48 Fleet Street, Temple Bar, Dublin, at 1pm, lunchtime, Mon 20th August, to mark the beginning of the NATO bombing of Tripoli, on August 20, 2011, and to call on the imperialist powers to stop their genocidal policy of orchestrating, arming and funding sectarian terrorism in Syria, and to cease their threats of violence against Iran.

 

A picket will be placed on this so called "Freedom Café" and leaflets handed out, which detail Amnesty International's disgraceful record of giving cover to NATO's imperialist adventures, through promoting lies attacking the perceived enemies of US interests. Sometimes these lies have been obscenely comical, such as the claims that Colonel Al Gaddafi gave the Libyan Army viagra so as to rape peaceful protestors. Other times they have been purely genocidal in intent and consequence, such as claiming that the Black members of the Libyan security forces were "mercenaries" from Sub-Saharan Africa (though they had lived in Libya for generations.) This particular lie gave political cover to the lynching of hundreds of Black people, and the ethnic cleansing of tens of thousands of Black people by NTC forces.

 

Amnesty continues this shameful behaviour in Syria, where it promotes the statements of sectarian terrorist groups as fact, and represents Islamic Fundamentalist terrorists as "heroes of democracy," and ignores the voices of those who wish to protect Syria's sovereign independence.

 

Related Link: http://www.facebook.com/events/330071313749339/

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Statement of the International Organizers

 

 

August 20th 2011 is the date that the North Atlantic Terrorist Alliance (NATO) began its onslaught on Tripoli, Libya, to bomb mercenaries from that country, Qatar, Jordan, Afghanistan and other parts of the wider region into the capital, lead by NATO special forces.

 

That date was covered by the western and GCC corporate media as the date that Libya was being “liberated”. The reality is that in Tripoli alone, in just 12 hours, the Jamahiriyah’s Ministry of Health, reported that 1,300 people had been killed and thousands injured. The following 5 days of intensive bombardment were nothing less then a bloodbath. During those days and up until this date, NATO forces and their proxies on the ground (perversely labeled as “freedom fighters”/”revolutionaries” by much of the international media) have systematically persecuted, murdered, tortured and imprisoned anyone who resists their agenda.

 

This date is a date for youth around the world to engage with each other on the basis of solidarity with their brothers and sisters who are suffering the most brutal effects of imperialist aggression, whether it be in Libya, Iraq, former Yugoslavia and Afghanistan which have been ravaged by NATO’s bombing campaigns; Syria which every day is losing more and more of its children to mercenaries that are being armed and financed by NATO powers, Sudan, Somalia and many other African countries which have been divided and continue to suffer long term sectarian war as a result of long term imperialist meddling, Colombia where millions live as internal refugees because of persecution by the Bogota US puppet Government, Puerto Rico, which remains a US colony, Haiti which has been punished by imperialist powers almost since the moment it established itself as the first Black Republic in the early 19th century, Palestine which has suffered more than 60 years of ethnic cleansing and European settler colonialism, Pakistan, where almost every day lives are lost to US drones….and the list goes on.

 

The idea for such an international event was conceived in Nicaragua, which lost over 50,000 people to a US proxy war against the revolutionary FSLN government in the 1980s, in addition to centuries of imperialist military and economic interference (including colonial occupation) that have lead to its current status as the poorest country in the Americas after Haiti. Since 2007, the FSLN has been back in power, and the idea of such a date is to maintain a high level of consciousness amongst Nicaraguan youth about the effects of imperialist aggression, by highlighting on this date such aggressions that continue in other parts of the world.

 

As well as raising consciousness, the idea of this date is for youth around the world to engage with each other and build up an anti-imperialist network amongst themselves.

 

In Nicaragua, an event will be organized on this date with young people, where this year's the theme will be Libya and Syria. The format of the event will be three or four expert speakers, followed by a question and answer session for the audience, but particularly youngsters in the audience, to engage with, and cultural performances (e.g. music, poetry etc) by young artists, thereby also giving them a platform to share their talents. The event will be filmed and shared online.

 

We encourage friends across the world to organize a similar such event, with a theme of your choice, although it is important that this date is also marked as the invasion of Tripoli in an effort to destroy the perverse narrative that this was the date that Tripoli was liberated. It is vital that all events are filmed and shared online so youth around the world can see that their counterparts are engaged in similar activities and as a basis for them to begin engaging and communicating with each other. Also, even if the audience present at the event is small, sharing videos of the events will maximise the potential audience for these events.

 

We already have confirmation that friends in London and Chicago, US, will be organizing sister events.

 

https://www.facebook...71315132881648/

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Wiki bio on Amnesty Ireland's current Executive Director, former PD Senator Colm O'Gorman

 

http://en.wikipedia....lm_O'Gorman

 

 

Yes, the PDs, a Rabid Right gang that stripped ordinary people of any protection and demanded that the landowners and their banksters be allowed to profit and plunder at will. Quite appropriate that Amnesty International would choose one of this vile gang to be their leader in Ireland.

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Well done to everyone to turned out today to show their condemnation of the Anglo-Zionist campaign of genocide against Africa and the Middle East, and the insidious role being played by Amnesty International in this genocidal campaign. The following letter was signed by those present and handed to an Amnesty International functionary:

 

Colm O’Gorman

Executive Director

Amnesty International

 

20th August 2012

 

Dear Sir

 

We write with grave concern in relation to the conduct of Amnesty International regarding recent conflicts and in particular, the current conflict in Syria.

 

It appears to us that Amnesty International has abandoned all pretence of championing universal human rights and has in its place adopted a partisan political stance aimed at encouraging war and aggression in Syria and other countries against whom the USA and its NATO allies have strategic interests.

 

The result of this aggression has been a corresponding increase in the commission of war crimes, crimes against humanity and other breaches of International Human Rights Law and International Humanitarian Law by non-state actors in Syria.

 

As an organisation, which claims to support universal human rights, we fully understand the criticism that your organisation has laid against the Syrian State. We would expect nothing else from Amnesty International but calls for the investigation and punishment of alleged human rights violations by any State.

 

Silence on Arming, Funding and Training of Human Rights Abusers

 

We are deeply disappointed however that this same level of criticism is not also directed at those who are engaged in armed conflict against the Syrian State. For International Human Rights to be respected, they must be applied universally. A partisan and selective approach only serves to undermine the concept and value of universal human rights and we would have thought that this would be something that Amnesty International would have deeply appreciated.

 

We welcome statements such as that of 3rd August 2012, calling for non-state actors in Syria, and in particular the Free Syrian Army, to be held accountable for inter alia unlawful killings, kidnaps and torture which they are alleged to have committed.

 

However, where we see a glaring disparity in your statements is in relation to the arming of the various parties in this conflict. Your statements such as those of 10th July 2012 make clear your organisations's policy to attempt to prevent the further arming of the Syrian State.

 

Your organisation however has been silent on the arming, training and funding of armed insurgent groups in Syria, groups which your own organisation has levied allegations of the most serious human rights abuses. It is no secret that these groups are provided with logistical support from the NATO States, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, yet your criticism of arms supplies relate only to those weapons provided to the Syrian State, primarily by Russia.

 

Are the same principles of responsibility under International Law not applicable to States who arm non-state actors who commit human rights abuses?

 

The continued arming and funding of these groups only serves to facilitate their further human rights violations, and prolong the conflict in Syria.

 

Your failure to pay any scrutiny to the funding and arming of such groups calls into question whether Amnesty International is seriously interested in preventing human rights violations from occurring or in bringing the conflict in Syria to an end. A comprehensive arms embargo and assets freeze in relation to all parties to the armed conflict would surely be what members of Amnesty International could expect from its organisation. However arms and money continue to flow to Syrian rebels without comment from your organisation.

 

The silence on this issue is even more puzzling given that your organisation is currently in the middle of a campaign to have the global arms trade regulated. This further calls into question Amnesty's commitment to genuine arms control when it comes to those bodies which the US and NATO find convenient to arm.

 

Irish dimension

 

The issue of the training arming and support of these groups also has an Irish dimension. One former Irish resident, Mehdi Al Harati, and one Irish citizen, Hussam Najjar, have been publically named in the media as providing military and other support to the insurgent groups. There are reports that other such international mercenaries are travelling to Syria intent on joining the conflict.

 

The Irish government has a legal responsibility to do all that it can do to prevent human rights abuses from occurring, particularly when it comes to its own citizens and residents. It also has an obligation to investigate and punish those responsible for such abuses. We have seen nothing from Amnesty International calling on the investigation of Irish nationals or residents who have admitted being involved in the armed insurgency, or indeed the investigation of other foreign mercenaries by their country of nationality or residence.

 

Silence on Ethnic Cleansing

 

Amnesty International has also been silent on the clear religious sectarian agenda of the Syrian armed groups. Calls from the Free Syrian Army for the ethnic cleansing of Christians and Alawite Shia Muslims amount to calls for genocide. There is also copious evidence of ethnic cleansing occurring on the ground, with an estimated 1 million Syrians having already been forced to flee from the rebels due to their ethnic, religious or secular beliefs.

 

While there is clearly an issue in relation to the large numbers of internally displaced people and refugees from the conflict, there has been no comment by Amnesty of the ethnic cleansing element of this mass population movement.

 

Calls for International Military Intervention

 

Furthermore, Amnesty International has criticised the International community and in particular Russia and China, for not acting more decisively in Syria. The vetoed UN resolution, which drew so much criticism from your organisation was a mandate for military intervention and regime change in Syria.

 

Are we to understand that Amnesty International believe that military intervention is a solution to human rights violations in Syria? Does Amnesty International now support regime change? These would surely be a fundamental shift from the founding principles of the organisation.

 

Has Amnesty International forgotten its experience in Libya already?

 

We recall that in Libya Amnesty International made similar calls for UN action. We also recall that on the day after the UN agreed to such a mandate that Amnesty International issued a statement asking that any international forces engaged in military intervention respect the rights of civilians.

 

Despite these calls, the number of civilians killed by NATO airstrikes remains uninvestigated, the number of other civilians who lost their lives in the conflict which was escalated and prolonged due to the NATO intervention is unknown, but is most certainly amongst the tens of thousands, amongst them thousands of Black Libyans and other Black Africans, who were subjected to racist attacks by non-state actors, spurred on by later withdrawn claims by Amnesty that the state had been using sub-Saharan mercenaries to commit abuses.

 

The position regarding human rights in Libya, (the reason why Amnesty supported international intervention), is today recognised as being dire, with arbitrary detention, torture and extra-judicial executions commonplace.

 

Has intervention helped the cause of human rights in Libya? The similarities with Syria are stark. Non-state actors with stated genocidal intent are fighting an insurgency against the State, armed and supported by NATO and other nations. Yet Amnesty concentrates it’s criticism on the State and continues to call for international military intervention.

 

Conclusion

 

The above paints a picture of an organisation which is eager to facilitate US and NATO military intervention, and which will then appease itself in criticising the human rights abuses which follow such intervention, much in the same way that your organisation appears eager to criticise abuses by the Free Syrian Army but takes no action to prevent them from receiving the money and arms which make their abuses possible.

 

This approach does not help prevent human rights abuses, but actually facilitates them.

 

We feel duty bound to point out these anomalies to you, and to your members who we are sure would not support such an approach, and ask that you remedy these deficiencies or accept your share of the responsibility of the continued human rights violations in Syria and beyond.

 

In that light we call on Amnesty International do the following:

 

· To call on governments across the world, including the Irish government, to support Syrian sovereignty and to unambiguously condemn rebel atrocities an NATO military interference in Syrian affairs.

· To call for the closure of the Turkish border to armed groups intent on entering Syria to engage in armed conflict

· To call for an immediate and effective arms embargo and assets freeze on groups and individuals involved in promoting and engaging in armed conflict in Syria.

· To call for an end to the training and other logistical support provided to such groups, particularly from the US, UK, French, Turkish, Saudi and Qatari governments.

· To call on the Irish government to investigate and punish any Irish citizens or residents who have gone to Syria to commit crimes against Irish law, such as murder, or any crimes against International Human Rights Law or International Humanitarian Law.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Irish Solidarity With Victims of Racist Genocide

swvrgireland@yahoo.ie

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