Category: Human Rights
Today the whole planet–at least the human part– celebrates the United Nations created International Day of Peace, first established in 1981. This year’s theme honors the 70th anniversary of the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights by suggesting “the right to peace”, a right not explicitly declared in the UDHR. If we think of peace as a human right (the right not to be … Read More For the International Day of Peace: A Brief Reflection
Back in November of 2016, the prosecutor at the International Criminal Court, founded in 2002, stated that she had reason to believe that American soldiers were guilty of war crimes, including torture, in Afghanistan. The ICC statement said there was “a reasonable basis to believe” that “members of United States of America (US) armed forces and members of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) committed … Read More It’s no crime for ICC to investigate U.S. war crimes
By John Frederick Kaufman The notion that the internet would prove an unmitigated boon for the spread of democracy and human rights neglected the Achilles’ heel of digital communication: online speed, reach and access can be centrally controlled, either by a few big corporations who make (and profit from) the means to transmit the stuff or authoritarian governments that control the wires and corporations. … Read More PEN America Issues Detailed, Disturbing Report on China’s Internet Censorship
(Much to say today in a small way, which reminds me of the poems I am not writing, a sacrifice I make in the interests of public service. Time to come to the aid of the country, etc.) President Trump fired Secretary of State Rex Tillerson today via Twitter; if the Russians ever hack into Trump’s Twitter account . . . Or perhaps they … Read More Did Trump Dump Sec. of State Tillerson to Make Diplomacy and Human Rights Even Weaker Again?
By John Frederick Kaufman Speaking of his poetry, here’s what Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko, who died yesterday in Tulsa, Oklahoma at the age of 84, told the Associated Press in an interview back in 2007: “I don’t call it political poetry, I call it human rights poetry; the poetry which defends human conscience as the greatest spiritual value.” If you are not familiar with … Read More The “Human Rights Poetry” of Yevgeny Yevtushenko Very Relevant Today
What price war? In Syria and Iraq, U.S. coalition airstrikes will inevitability kill some innocent people, including children. This fact is apparently not enough to prevent democracies from dropping bombs and missiles from aircraft. We have known since the glory days of aerial bombardment during World War II that the killing of civilians in war has been justified for the sake of military success. Intentionally targeting large … Read More Reality: Airstrikes are killing civilians
What do the United States, Russia and Saudi Arabia have in common? All three nations have, based on credible reports, intentionally dropped bombs on working medical facilities in Afghanistan, Syria and Yemen, respectively. The Associated Press reports that U.S. special forces operating in Kunduz ordered airstrikes on a known Doctors Without Borders hospital, perhaps in the mistaken belief that the hospital contained Taliban fighters, … Read More Folly of war: Intentionally bombing hospitals