Thursday, July 07, 2011

Video from activists on board Canadian flotilla ship & Obama's Gulag & Germany Selling Tanks To Saudi Arabia

UPDATED: 3:14 PM, July 7, 2011

Freedom Flotilla Activists

Freedom to protest denied by Israel and its allies .
Greek authorities prevent Gaza Freedom  Flotilla ships from leaving port
Obama's Gulag denying legal rights to detainees held on American ships???

Germany ignoring the human rights abuses of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain to sell 200 tanks to Saudis.
The concern is that the Saudis will use these tanks to quash any protests in its own country but will send them to other countries such as Bahrain to use force to put down even peaceful protests.
In Bahrain the draconian & brutal  crackdown on protesters has been aided by Saudi troops and arms.
Meanwhile while Obama helps the armed rebels in Libya he ignores or even gives the Green Light to Bahrain and Saudi Arabia to use whatever force they deem necessary to quash all protests and dissidends in both countries.

Outrage as Germany 'Sells' 200 Tanks to Saudi Regime 
Russia Television , July 6, 2011

Germany is reportedly selling two hundred battle tanks to Saudi Arabia. Talk of a deal has caused outrage among Germany's opposition politicians, who claim the government would be breaking its own export rules. Peace activist Jens Wagner says he fears the heavy weapons could be used to crush anti-regime protests in the region.
Posted July 06, 2011

Lone flotilla boat heads to Gaza Hindu News International, July 6, 2011

Sneaks out of Greece waters in spite of ban on departure

A lone French yacht was on Wednesday headed for Gaza after sneaking out of Greek waters in defiance of a ban on the departure of aid ships aiming to run Israel's blockade on the coastal strip.

The MV Dignite/Al Karama, which left Greek waters early on Tuesday, is heading slowly towards Gaza, a spokesman for the French Boat to Gaza campaign told AFP, saying they had not yet given up hope they would be joined by others from the ill-fated Freedom Flotilla which had been due to set sail last week.

Most of the 10 ships which had been due to join the naval convoy are stuck at ports in Greece after Athens imposed a blanket ban on the departure of any vessels destined for Gaza.

Another ship, the Irish-owned MV Saoirse, is undergoing repairs at a Turkish port after its propeller was damaged in what activists claimed was “sabotage” by Israel. So far, only the MV Dignite, which has 12 people on board, has managed to set sail, a spokesman for the French boat said.

“They're getting on very well,” Thomas Sommer-Houdeville told AFP by phone from Athens, saying the vessel had begun to move slowly towards Gaza on Tuesday afternoon after waiting for several hours in international waters to see if the Greek, Norwegian and Swedish activists on board the MV Juliano would also manage to set sail. “Yesterday afternoon, our Greek colleagues [on board the MV Juliano] were not able to leave, so they decided to start sailing slowly” towards Gaza, he said after speaking by phone to activists on board the Dignite.

Israel is taking actions to stop or control activists from entering Israel by ship or by air. Israel calls activists " provocateurs " for daring to question or protest Israel's draconian policies which have turned Gaza into a virtual prison . Some have even compared Israel's treatment of Gaza as equivalent to the Germans treatment of Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto.

The main problem or point of contention is taht Israel can do no wrong since it is a beleagured state surrounded by its enemies. But to the rest of the world it is Israel which has surrounded and closed in the people of Gaza. Another issue is that Israel's allies including the US, Britain, Canada etc. have given the Green Light to Israel to do as it pleases to the people of Gaza .
They are also giving Israel the Green Light to do what it believes necessary to stop the pro-Palestinian activists . Last year the IDF killed a number of activists after the IDF boarded the ships in the Freedom Flotilla.

So Israeli allies defend Israel's actions of last year in boarding vessels even though the boarding took place in International waters and not within Israel's jurisdiction. So in this case the US and the West supported this criminal act of piracy on the high seas. One wonders if all nations now have the same right of a pre-emptive strike against any vessel even coming close to their territorial waters.
So does Canada have the right to board a US ship or one from any other nation which we believe is threatening to enter our territorial waters to deliver "provocateurs" or "activists" or any sort of contraband even when the ship is 50 or a 100 kilometers outside their legal Territorial waters.

The US as seen below claims it can ignore the rights of those detained on an American vessel if is in International Waters. I naively believed that any US personnel acting on behalf of the US government whether the CIA, US military, special forces etc. were required to obey US laws and International Agreements.
Otherwise on the High Seas anything goes murder, torture, destroying foreign vessels so where do we draw the line-well wherever the US tells us I suppose.

Israel Deports Five Pro-Palestinian Activists; Prepares for Arrival of Hundreds Haaretz Israel via CommonDreams, July 6, 2011

Between 600 and 1,200 activists are expected to try to enter Israel by plane as counterpart to the Gaza flotilla.
Israeli police has deported five pro-Palestinian activists in the past two days back to their home countries, France and Belgium.
Dozens of Israeli security forces deployed at the Ben Gurion International Airport on Wednesday afternoon, following reports that hundreds of pro-Palestinian activists planned to fly into the country as a counterpart to the Gaza-bound aid flotilla.
Between 600 and 1,200 activists were expected to arrive at Ben-Gurion Airport on Thursday night and Friday, on flights from Moscow and New York.

Israel Police and Border Police officers are now spread out across the arrivals hall. Hundreds more security officers plan will be stationed in the airport over the coming days in anticipation of the activists' arrival.
It is expected that the activists will set up camp across the airport as part of their protest.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said earlier Wednesday that the security forces must act firmly against the planned protests.
"Every country has the right to prevent the entry of provocateurs into its borders," Netanyahu said during a meeting with several heads of Israeli security services at the Ben-Gurion airport.
Netanyahu stressed that Israel will act as every civilized country would in the face of provocateurs, but ordered security forces to "avoid unnecessary altercations."
Following the discussion, Netanyahu ordered Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch to exert all efforts to prevent an infiltration into Israel's borders.
Haaretz reported Tuesday that Israel has provided intelligence to the United States seven European countries, and several foreign airline companies regarding the activists who plan on participating in the airport protest.

Meanwhile President Obama is borrowing from the Israeli playbook by ignoring international laws and agreements concerning the treatment of those incarcerated as suspects by US security agencies.
What is of note is that the mainstream media outlet Al Jazeera in reporting this story should be taken seriously as a reflection of the way in which much of the Middle East and Arab world sees the US and its allies.
So if the US can ignore civil or human rights and international agreements it is at least hypocritical of the US and its allies in the West or in the Middle East to criticize countries for violating such agreements on the treatment of POWs or detainees or  terrorist suspects or even dissidents and those protesting peacefully in public.
So it is no wonder that the US is ignored when it makes public speeches about human rights and yet in practice ignores the rights of those in US custody.

Obama's Gulag - Detention Without Trial Somali Terror Suspect Secretly Held And Interrogated by US by Al-Jazeera, july 6, 2011

Man appears in New York court after being held on US navy ship for two months without being advised of his rights.
"Al-Jazeera" -- A Somali man who has appeared before a US criminal court to face charges of assisting al-Qaeda and a Somali armed group was questioned secretly aboard a US Navy ship for more than two months without being advised of his rights.
Ahmed Abdulkadir Warsame was captured in the Gulf of Aden on April 19, where he faced questioning by US interrogators "for intelligence purposes for more than two months" before being read his Miranda rights, US prosecutors said in a statement.

Miranda rights entitle suspects to a lawyer and the right to remain silent.

Warsame appeared in a New York court on Tuesday and pleaded not guilty to providing material support to Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and Somalia's al-Shabaab.

A US official said Warsame's questioning was conducted under the rules of the US Army Field Manual, which places strict limits on interrogation techniques.

Members of the High Value Interrogation Group - comprised of CIA, FBI and Defence Department staff - interrogated him, an official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

President Barack Obama's administration has come under fire by Republicans, and even some fellow Democrats, over his decision to prosecute some terrorism suspects in criminal courts and not in military courts, where rules for evidence are looser.

In Washington, another senior administration official said Obama's national security team had unanimously recommended the prosecution of Warsame in a criminal court.

'Weapons deal'

After his interrogation, a fresh FBI team came in and was permitted to talk with Warsame, at which time he waived his legal rights and continued to talk for several days, an official, who wished to remain anonymous, told the Reuters news agency.

Warsame arrived in New York City late on July 4 after being formally arrested the previous day, according to a letter from prosecutors to the US court.

Warsame, said to be in his mid-20s, was indicted on nine charges, including providing material support from at least 2007 to April 2011 to al-Shabaab and AQAP, two groups designated by Washington as terrorist organisations.

According to the charges, Warsame also worked to broker a weapons deal with AQAP on behalf of al-Shabaab.

A joint statement by the Manhattan US Attorney, the FBI and the New York Police Department said he was also charged with "conspiring to teach and demonstrate the making of explosives, possessing firearms and explosives in furtherance of crimes of violence and other violations".
And so it goes,

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