Four hundred years ago, a Portuguese ship named the São João Bautista traveled across the Atlantic Ocean carrying a load of captive Africans from Angola, in southwestern Africa, to the “New World.” Seized by two English pirate ships, the captive Africans ended up in the British colony of Virginia, founded just 12 years earlier, the first permanent English settlement in North America established by the Virginia Company of London in 1671. Only twenty survived the journey. Jamestown, Virginia soon became one of the main areas for the arrival of enslaved Africans. The sale of the 20 Africans to the owners of tobacco fields began the Atlantic slave trade on which the United States was built. Continue reading
Category Archives: Africa
Demonstrations have broken out on Canada to condemn U.S. racist concentration camps. It was in Canada in 1916 that the city of Berlin, Ontario was renamed Kitchener at the height of racist attacks on residents of German origin and Mennonite faith during the height of the first imperialist world war, a consequence of “top down” “war=driven propaganda.” But who was this Kitchener?
By NIALL O’DOWD, Irsihcentral
There has been heated discussion on the term “concentration camp” since allegations by Democrats that such camps are soon going to start operating with migrant children in southern U.S. border areas. Continue reading
By CHRISTINE HONG
1. Victors’ Justice?
In February 2014, upon completing a several-month investigation into “human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea [DPRK, or North Korea]” – an investigation initiated in the sixtieth anniversary year of the 1953 Korean War Armistice Agreement that halted combat but did not end the war – the three-member Commission of Inquiry (COI) established by the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) concluded that North Korea had committed crimes against humanity. Such “unspeakable atrocities,” in the framing account of Commission chair Michael Kirby, “reveal a totalitarian State [without] parallel in the contemporary world.” Analogies to the “dark abyss” of North Korea, the Australian jurist maintained, could be found only in the brutality of the Third Reich, South African apartheid, and the Khmer Rouge regime. Reproduced in news reports around the world, Kirby’s markedly ahistorical examples may have succeeded in inflaming global public opinion yet they failed to contextualize the issue of North Korean human rights in a way that might generate peaceful structural resolution. Indeed, insofar as the 372-page COI report singularly identified the North Korea government as the problem – both as “a remaining and shameful scourge that afflicts the world today,” in Kirby’s jingoistic phrase, and as the primary obstacle to peace in Korea – the Commission gave new life to the vision of regime change that has animated post-9/11 North Korean human rights campaigns. By recommending that North Korea and its high officials be brought up before the Hague-based International Criminal Court (ICC), it continued the hostilities of the unresolved Korean War “by means purporting to be judicial.” The urgent question of a long-deferred peace relative to the Korean peninsula, which the Commission incoherently addressed, bedeviled its conclusions, rendering its findings partial, its recommendations in some instances uneasily one-sided, and its premise of impartiality suspect. Moreover, that the COI proceedings and report aligned the United Nations with the United States, South Korea, Japan, and Great Britain while singling out North Korea and, to a far lesser degree, China, for blame performed an unsettling restaging of the Korean War on the agonistic terrain of human rights, suggesting an encrypted “victor’s justice” with regard to an unending war that up to now has had no clear winners. Continue reading
Refusal to uphold international rule of law is a serious matter of concern | Three articles from TML Weekly, John Pilger and Craig Murray
TML Weekly welcomes the February 25 ruling of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the Chagos Islands. In a majority decision of 13 to 1, with all the judges from EU countries amongst those finding against the UK, the ICJ ruled that the continued British occupation of the Chagos Islands is illegal and ordered the UK to return the islands to Mauritius “as rapidly as possible.” The islands were seized by the British in 1965 and the people forcibly removed in 1971 to permit the U.S. to build a military base on the island of Diego Garcia. This base plays a criminal role in the U.S. striving for world hegemony. Continue reading
Cuba understands the obligations of the government of Canada to protect its diplomatic personnel posted anywhere in the world and to try to find answers to the health symptoms reported in Cuba, however, it considers that Canada’s decision made public today is incomprehensible.
Cutting Canad’s staff at its Embassy in Cuba and adjusting the mission’s programs are actions that do not help find answers to the health symptoms reported by Canadian diplomats, and which will have an impact on the relations. Continue reading
By TONY SEED
On January 20, 1973, Amílcar Lopes da Costa Cabral, leader of the national liberation movement in Guinea Bissau and Cape Verde in West Africa, was assassinated, just months before Guinea Bissau won its long independence struggle against Portugal.
Guinea-Bissau was once part of the kingdom of Gabu, part of the ancient Mali Empire; parts of this kingdom persisted until the 18th century. Other parts of the territory in the current country were considered by the Portuguese as part of their empire. Portuguese Guinea was known as the Slave Coast, as it was a major area for the exportation of African slaves by Europeans to the western hemisphere.