Russia has accused Ukrainian forces of executing a group of Russian prisoners, an action it has described as a war crime...
Poll: 93% of Ukrainians see Holodomor as genocide
As many as 93% of Ukrainians believe that the Holodomor of 1932-1933 was genocide of the Ukrainian people, and only 3% don’t think so.
That’s according to a survey conducted by the Rating Sociological Group on November 20-21, 2022, Ukrinform reports.
“Some 93% said they agree with the statement that the Holodomor of 1932-1933 was genocide of the Ukrainian people. Only 3% deny this, and 4% were undecided,” the report said.
Over the past decade, the number of respondents who agree with the statement that the Holodomor of 1932-33 is genocide of the Ukrainian people has increased by one-and-a-half times.
The Holodomor of 1932-33 is seen as genocide by most residents of the western, central, and southeastern regions of Ukraine. Also, there were no significant deviations in terms of age in this matter.
On the fourth Saturday of November, Ukrainians honor the memory of the victims of the Holodomor. In the 20th century, Ukrainians experienced three famines: in 1921-1923, 1932-1933, and 1946-1947. The most extensive was the famine of 1932-1933 – it is called the genocide of the Ukrainian people carried out by the Stalinist regime.
The Kremlin does not teach its troops how to behave while surrendering
The Russian forces fighting in Ukraine are completely illiterate and ignorant when it comes to observing the internationally established rules and customs of war.
The top and middle-tier command evidently opt to not inform their subordinates about the limitations posed by international humanitarian law. Also, the command may actually encourage troops to violate it.
The consequences of such nihilism and ignorance are deplorable.
Russian troops commit war crimes in Ukraine — executions, torture, and inhumane treatment of unarmed civilians and prisoners of war. Their conduct gives grounds to believe that the Russian occupiers have received a “blessing” from their command to wreak havoc. This is not dissimilar to how Hitler inspired his soldiers: “I hereby free you from the chimera called conscience.”
In addition, the Russian command does not encourage its subordinates to observe even those norms of international humanitarian law which are designed to ease their own fate.
Russian troops fail to understand that there may be circumstances when they need to surrender. And this is nothing to be embarrassed of and neither this is a crime.
Captivity is a status that limits freedom, but at the same time, it is not the same as serving a sentence in prison for crimes committed. Civilized surrender and dignified stay in captivity are notable achievements of modern international law that have humanized war.
The Ukrainian political leadership and military command relied on the norms of international humanitarian law regarding the observance of the rights of prisoners of war when they ordered the Azovstal garrison to cease resistance in May 2022. And that is why most of the Ukrainian forces survived.
Putin’s troops in Ukraine, on the other hand, seem to be adhering to the opposite tactic. Stalin disowned his prisoners, brandishing them as weak-minded and treacherous. A soldier in Stalin’s era was supposed to die rather than surrender. Putin trains his soldiers the same way. At the same time, though, he allows them to resort to perfidy and treachery. For example, the troops are encouraged to pretend to surrender only to kill the enemy taking them prisoner.
This is what Prigozhin meant when he was recruiting inmates in the infamous video: “No one backs down, no one gives up, no one surrenders. When you are trained how to surrender, they’ll tell you: there are two grenades you must carry.”
This behavior is defined as perfidy and proscribed by Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 (namely Art. 37). Violating civilized norms, the Russian military exposes itself to danger, instead of taking advantage of the guaranteed rights of prisoners of war.
The incident with the death of unidentified Russian troops in the video being spun by Russian propaganda is precisely a consequence of this barbaric attitude to international law. In case of armed resistance during capture, the opposing party is entitled to adequate self-defense.
Russia must publicly undertake to conduct outreach work with its troops regarding the laws and customs of war and the duty to strictly observe them. Otherwise, it is rather difficult to qualify these units as legitimate combatants.
Center for Strategic Communication and Information Security
There seemed to be enough torpedoes in the water in Washington this week that you could walk across the Potomac without getting your feet wet. On Capitol Hill, the new House Republican majority announced a series of subpoena-ready investigations of President Biden and administration officials. At the Justice Department, Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed a special counsel to investigate former President Trump for possible crimes ranging from the 2020 election to the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot to the Mar-a-Lago documents controversy.
It was all reminiscent of the movie “The Lord of War,” in which a fictional arms dealer warns that “the problem with gunrunners going to war is that there is no shortage of ammunition.” The same appears true of rival government officials having no shortage of subpoenas.
In this atmosphere of politically and mutually assured destruction, there are some immediate threats for the three main combatants:
Attorney General Garland…
Back in April of this year, the world’s richest man, Elon Musk, stated,
“Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated.”
A question: can you declare that you are for freedom of speech/expression and ban, or maintain a ban, on a person from expressing himself in a purportedly public forum and preserve your integrity? Whether the new owner of Twitter, Musk, steadfastly stands on the principle of freedom of expression looks like it is about to be revealed.
One question is whether the former president Donald Trump will be allowed back onto the Twitter platform.
Musk was critical of Twitter’s ban of Trump. He called it a “morally bad decision” and “foolish in the extreme.”
A section of the corporate sector (obviously, the corporate sector is not a monolith, as Trump and Musk both belong to this sector) is threatening a boycott of its advertising dollar if Musk allows Trump back on Twitter. This has set the stage for what could turn out to be a showcase of corporate infighting…
Portland Prosecutors, the Anti-Defamation League and the Anarchist Violent Extremist organization Rose City Antifa colluded to indict an innocent white man of murder, recently leaked grand jury documents show. On July 29th, a white man named Jascha Manny was working as a doorman at Mary’s Club, a strip club in Portland’s Old Town neighborhood. During his shift, he witnessed a group of black men threatening a couple of homeless people. The aggressors were also shining a high-powered strobe light into the eyes of the random indigent citizens. As the encounter escalated, Manny rushed to confront the bullies in hopes that they would leave the people alone. It was then that 19-year-old Lauren Teyshawn Abbott Jr pulled out a firearm and began shooting at Manny. The bouncer responded by returning fire, killing Abott and injuring his associate, 23-year-old Kolby Ross. The entire incident was caught on video from multiple angles and witnesses supported Manny’s testimony, but thanks in part to the ADL’s intervention, left-wing District Attorney Mike Schmidt called a grand jury in August in an attempt to indict him for murder and assault. During the proceedings, prosecutors centered their argument for criminal charges on prejudicial information secretly provided to them by the ADL’s “Center on Extremism,” which asserted that Manny had pro-white political beliefs. The Jewish group, which works closely with local law enforcement and the FBI, had laundered this specious information from Rose City Antifa, a domestic extremist group that openly avows violence and was actively involved in organizing Portland’s brutal 2020 riots. There was never any evidence that Manny was motivated by race when he decided to return fire against the blacks shooting at him. The goal of the ADL’s intervention in this case appears to have been to offend the assumed political sensibilities of jurors into indicting an innocent man. According to local news reports, the grand jury was shown images and writings demonstrating Manny’s alleged political ideology, but after seeing mounds of exculpatory evidence, they declined to indict. This vindication did not change the minds of left-wing activists. In response to DA Schmidt’s statement that his hands are tied, various anarchist, Jewish and liberal groups have joined forces to organize a pressure campaign to have Manny charged with hate crimes, not for his actions, but for his beliefs…
18 Nov, 2022 17:42
Biden accused of ‘capitulation’ to Saudis
Human Rights group accuses US President of surrendering to pressure tactics
US President Joe Biden and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, July 15, 2022 © Getty Images / Anadolu Agency / Contributor
The US government has determined that Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman should be granted immunity for the 2018 murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The Biden administration cited the prince’s promotion to the role of prime minister in a court filing submitted on Thursday.
This suggestion has prompted fierce backlash from Khashoggi’s fiancee, Hatice Cengiz, as well as from human rights activists.
Khashoggi’s brutal murder in Turkey, which the CIA determined was ordered by bin Salman, widely known as MBS, left a major dent in US-Saudi relations. Holding the kingdom and MBS personally accountable was a major talking point for Joe Biden during his presidential campaign, in which he promised to make the country a “pariah” on the international stage.
According to the filing, the US Department of State “recognizes and allows the immunity of Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman as a sitting head of government.” At the same time, it reiterates its “unequivocal condemnation” of Khashoggi’s “heinous” murder, but “takes no view” on the merits of the lawsuit filed by Cengiz and human rights organization Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN) against the Crown Prince and his alleged “co-conspirators.”
The government’s immunity request is non-binding so the decision on MBS’ status remains with the judge. Responding to the news, Cengiz said that “Jamal died again.”
Sarah Leah Whitson, the head of DAWN, which was founded by Khashoggi himself, described the Biden administration’s move as “a capitulation to Saudi pressure tactics.” She referred to media reports in March that MBS allegedly refused Biden’s request to increase Saudi oil output unless the US administration granted him immunity from the lawsuits.
Meanwhile, Nihad Awad, the head of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, tweeted that “the Biden administration sold Jamal Khashoggi’s blood for Saudi oil.”
Saudi Arabia has not yet commented on the legal development. According to media reports, the Crown Prince previously reassured Biden that his government had taken measures to prevent “mistakes” similar to those made in Khashoggi’s case from happening again in the future.
One day after retaking a majority in the US House of Representatives, Republicans have said they will investigate the president’s family as a “top priority”...
A panel on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit seemed to be channeling the lyrics of the musical Hamilton in noting that “Everything is legal in New Jersey.” The panel ruled against a transgender woman who brought a discrimination claim against a beauty pageant that allowed only “natural-born females” to compete. In a prior 2016 column, I discussed the racially discriminatory consideration of only “non-Whites” for the cast of the much-celebrated production. The majority opinion written by Judge Lawrence VanDyke noted the policy in upholding a policy that excluded trans women from the Miss United States of America pageant in Oregon.
In the 2016 column, I asked “if racial casting is permitted for plays, can other businesses claim that same right to discriminate as necessary to maintain an image or tradition?” That issue came up in the Oregon case of Anita Green.
Green has previously competed…