Category Archives: Uncategorized

Prometheus and Pandora XVIII

Our featured image shows Athena and Hephaistos, who had been ordered by Zeus  to create a woman, Pandora, admiring their handiwork.

The Charity Corner has found a home on the Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action site. Prometheus and Pandora hope that you will visit the site, take the actions and make the donations.

 

IN MEMORIAM

NEIL SIMON July 4, 1927-August 26, 2018

'THE ODD COUPLE' PLAY OPENING NIGHT POST PARTY, NEW YORK, AMERICA - 27 OCT 2005

Neil Simon, one of the rare late-20th century playwrights who was a brand name for plays such as “The Odd Couple” and “Barefoot in the Park,” died on August 26. He was 91. A statement from his reps said, “Neil Simon, the Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright, died on August at New York-Presbyterian Hospital in New York City. The cause was complications from pneumonia. His wife, Elaine Joyce Simon, was at his bedside along with Mr. Simon’s daughters, Ellen Simon and Nancy Simon.” In addition to his four Oscar nominations and 17 Tony nominations, Simon’s works brought an unsurpassed 50 Tony nominations for their actors. His competitive Tony wins came for “The Odd Couple” (best playwright) and for best play for “Lost in Yonkers” and “Biloxi Blues.”

Detailed obituaries can be found in the NYtimes and Variety.

 

John T. “Jack” Gosling 10 July 1938-10 May 2018

https://external.flhr5-1.fna.fbcdn.net/safe_image.php?d=AQDcm0-ntrIUe24i&w=540&h=282&url=https%3A%2F%2Feos.org%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2018%2F09%2Fjohn-t-jack-gosling.jpg&cfs=1&upscale=1&fallback=news_d_placeholder_publisher&sx=0&sy=65&sw=820&sh=428&_nc_hash=AQC6Div_FDFRjTIr

John T. “Jack” Gosling died 10 May 2018, in Louisville, Colo., after a battle with cancer. With his passing, the field of space physics has lost one of its most insightful, productive, and influential scientists, and many of us have lost a dear and treasured friend. A detailed obituary and account of his great scientific achievements has been written by his colleagues at Los Alamos National Laboratory. and published in EOS. the journal of the American Geophysical Union. Rest in peace, dear friend.

UNRANT

For once we want to be a bit positive. We have found a fascinating site called Brainpickings, run by a lady named Maria Popova. Prometheus and Pandora recommend that you take a look at it and maybe cough up a donation to keep it running.

Pandora and Prometheus would like to link you to a review of a beautiful book by the great Shel Silverstein, The Missing Piece. Enjoy!

RANT OF THE MONTH

Prometheus and Pandora have been ranting for quite a while about the erosion of democracy in Israel and elsewhere. At the risk of being redundant we will link you to a hard-hitting article by Chemi Shalev in Haaretz in which he analyzes the spooky symbiosis between Trump and Netanyahu and draws a parallel between the pogrom of Charlottesville a year ago and the Nation State law in Israel. Both support white/Jewish supremacy and as Shalev writes-“We’re all Jews, Netanyahu is signaling, we know why we’re here, and nothing else matters:.”

Of course much else does matter, especially the rights of minority communities, Arabs, Druze and others. The problem is in many ways the assertion that the Jewish nature of the state trumps human rights. If the rightist interpretation of Judaism is adopted, Israel will find itself disconnected from the largest Jewish community in the world, that in the USA, most of whose members are liberal.  Shuki Friedman writing in Haaretz makes the point that the definition of Judaism is the critical point in the struggle for the soul of the nation. If the closed parochial version continues to be dominant then democracy has no chance. We shall also lose our connection to the liberal nations still left in the EU.  Eva Illiuz, also in Haaretz, points out the catastrophic effect for the Jews of the world of Israel’s alignment with the populist, often anti-Semitic countries around the world. Hungary and Poland are strong examples of this trend.

poland

An illustration depicting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shaking hands with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki in Auschwitz. Credit Eran Wolkowski

Despite the hostile environment, there are people, including human rights lawyers and other activists, who are struggling in Israel to protect minority rights. David Shulman writing in the NYRB extols their courage and persistence . He reviews two books, one on the connection of Jews to human rights in the 20th century and the struggle for human rights in  Israel seen  through the eyes of a human rights lawyer.

A RANT IN A PICTURE

1665861

 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MARGY!

330px-Margaret_Galland_Kivelson
In a few weeks our dear friend and colleague Margy Kivelson, professor emerita at UCLA, will celebrate her 90th birthday. Over the decades we have shared  several spacecraft missions and have greatly enjoyed both working with her and hanging out in her delightful company. She has had a remarkable career and is still going strong in science and in everything else. We had an email from her a few weeks ago that warmed our hearts. For a description of her life and career we refer you to the NYTimes who do it much better than we could.

TIDBITS FROM SCIENCE

GALILEO LETTER DISCOVERED

galileoletter

The original letter in which Galileo argued against the doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church has been rediscovered in London. Credit: The Royal Society

The original letter of 1613 — long thought lost — in which Galileo Galilei first set down his arguments against the church’s doctrine that the Sun orbits the Earth has been discovered in a misdated library catalogue in London. The letter was used in the process against him by the Inquisition. It appears that he modified the letter to soften his claims against Scripture as science, but the version that was used in court was the strong one. The new discovery resolves the question of how the softening was done. It appears that Galileo himself did the editing and lied about the first version.

LANDING ON AN ASTEROID

japast

This spectacular photo shows the view from asteroid Ryugu of the Minerva-II1A rover during a hop after it successfully landed on Sept. 21, 2018. The probe is one of two that landed on Ryugu from the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency’s Hayabusa2 spacecraft. It’s the first time two mobile rovers landed on an asteroid.
Credit: Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency

Two tiny hopping robots have successfully landed on an asteroid called Ryugu–part of a sample return mission of the mother spacecraft Hayabusa2. The  robots now have a companion on the surface of   Ryugu. A shoebox-sized lander called the Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout (MASCOT) deployed from its mothership, Japan’s Hayabusa2 spacecraft, as planned at 9:57 p.m. EDT Tuesday (Oct. 2; 0157 GMT on Oct. 3) and came to rest on Ryugu shortly thereafter.

mascotphoto

The German-French Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout (MASCOT) lander captured this photo of asteroid Ryugu during landing operations on Oct. 3, 2018. The lander’s shadow is visible at upper right.
Credit: German Aerospace Center (DLR)

SILLY TIME

WhatIf

What would the world be like if the land masses were spread out the same way as now – only rotated by an angle of 90 degrees?

—Socke

The answer from Randal is very interesting. You will enjoy reading it.

SPELLING IS IMPORTANT

HERE IS A LINK TO A WUMO

Prometheus and Pandora do not wish to run afoul of WUMO’s copyright.

WE HEAR MUCH ABOUT AI…

 

 

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update October 3-10

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012), a great human rights defender

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1
Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.
bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHARITY CORNER

This week we turn our attention to the Mercy Corps, a non profit that responds to disasters and need around the world. Their mission statement: They are on the ground in Indonesia where the needs are huge. Please donate.

Indo_happymother

Our mission

Alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping people build secure, productive and just communities.

We believe

  • In the value of every human life and that, as members of a global community, we have a responsibility to support one another.
  • In the right of all people to meet their basic needs, feel hope for their future and have opportunities to thrive.
  • That every man, woman and child deserves to live in a secure, peaceful community and to be empowered to participate in the decisions that affect their lives.

Crisis and challenge provide an opening to act courageously and offer solutions that spark long-term, transformational change.

Mercy Corps is highly rated by     Charity Navigator Charity

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

Indigenous tribes do not simply die out. They are killed by the actions of so-called civilized nations. Survival International provides a long list of cases in which a letter from you can and will make a difference. Please open this link and write at least one letter. This link will be a permanent feature on our blog and we would be grateful if you gave it a bit of attention each week. We suggest going down the list in the order given. The letters are pre-written for you. All you need to do is send them. It would be nice also if a donation to Survival International could be forthcoming. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

A major calamity for indigenous people is enforced contact which can be deadly. Please act for people on the Peruvian contact border.

THE STRUGGLE AGAINST SLAVERY

We have added this section to the blog in order to join the struggle against slavery worldwide. This week we refer you to the the ILO’s Protocol on Forced Labor which is all about modern slavery. We call your attention to the anti slavery campaign. There you can sign up for action updates.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized.

tackling-modern-slavery-preview

You can download this book

Look for these logos:

logo_rfa

utz_certified

 

 

 

Find a campaign to work for. Light must be made to shine in the darkest of places. We invite you to join Freedom United        and ask the crucial question “who picked my tea?”

 

URGENT ACTION CASES

INDONESIA

Yakonias-Womsiwor

Urgent Action: Activist Shot by Police Denied Proper Medical Care

Papuan political activist, Yakonias Womsiwor, has been suffering from severe pain in both his legs for more than two weeks after being shot by police. Despite being unable to stand as a result of the gunshot, proper medical care has been denied by police.

TAKE ACTION

THAILAND

 

Urgent Action: Chinese Refugees at Risk of Refoulement

photo-yang-n-wu-2014-china-004
Chinese human rights defenders YANG Chong and WU Yuhua, UNHCR-recognized refugees, have been charged with immigration offences in Thailand. They could be deported to China, where they would face risks of unfair trial and torture.

TAKE ACTION

Democratic Republic of Congo  (DRC)

Mino Bopomi - Filimbi Activist

Urgent Action Update: Human Rights Activists Sentenced in Unfair Trial

On 24 September, a court in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) found Grâce Tshiunza, Mino Bopomi, Cedric Kalonji and Carbone Beni guilty of “insulting the president”, “publication of subversive writings” and “civil disobedience”. The same court acquitted Palmer Kabeya. Amnesty International believes that the court’s decision against the four human rights activists is baseless and criminalizes legal and peaceful activism by human rights activists.

TAKE ACTION

NIGERIA

image1170x530cropped

An aerial view of Ogoniland shows oil floating on the water’s surface.

Urgent Action: Community in Nigeria Drinking Polluted Water

There is an urgent need for the government and multinational oil company Shell to ensure a regular supply of safe water to people in the oil-producing Niger Delta region of Nigeria. Their right to water continues to be violated as they are forced to drink dangerously polluted water or buy water at unaffordable prices.

TAKE ACTION

Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update September 27-October 5

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012), a great human rights defender.

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1

Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

 

CHARITY CORNER

This week we turn our attention to Innovation Africa, a nonprofit that uses Israeli technology to help Africans. The mission statement: “We are a nonprofit on a mission to bring innovative Israeli solar and water technologies to remote African villages. With the help of people like you, we have provided one million people across Africa with access to vaccines, light and water.” Worthy of your support.

 

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

Indigenous tribes do not simply die out. They are killed by the actions of so-called civilized nations. Survival International provides a long list of cases in which a letter from you can and will make a difference. Please open this link and write at least one letter. This link will be a permanent feature on our blog and we would be grateful if you gave it a bit of attention each week. We suggest going down the list in the order given. The letters are pre-written for you. All you need to do is send them. It would be nice also if a donation to Survival International could be forthcoming. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

A major calamity for indigenous people is enforced contact which can be deadly. Please act for people on the Peruvian contact border.

THE STRUGGLE AGAINST SLAVERY

We have added this section to the blog in order to join the struggle against slavery worldwide. This week we refer you to the the ILO’s Protocol on Forced Labor which is all about modern slavery. We call your attention to the anti slavery campaign. There you can sign up for action updates.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized.

tackling-modern-slavery-preview
You can download this book

Look for these logos:

 

logo_rfa
utz_certified

 

 

 

 

Find a campaign to work for. Light must be made to shine in the darkest of places. We invite you to join Freedom United        and lend your voice to the call to suspend loans tainted with Uzbek forced labor

URGENT ACTION CASES

INDIA

dra-644x362

Urgent Action Victory! – Dalit Rights Activist Released

Chandrashekhar Azad ‘Ravan’, a prominent Dalit rights activist, has been released from Saharanpur District Prison on 14 September. He was being held in administrative detention without charge or trial under the draconian National Security Act.

Chandrashekhar Azad ‘Ravan’ was released from Saharanpur District Prison in Uttar Pradesh on 14 September 2018, where he was being held in administrative detention since November 2017.

Chandrashekhar Azad has been detained under the National Security Act (NSA) for almost 11 months. The NSA permits administrative detention for up to 12 months on loosely defined grounds of national security and maintenance of public order. It is a repressive law that has been used to target human rights defenders in India.

Speaking to the media upon his release, Chandrashekhar Azad said, “The government was scared that they would be rebuked by the Supreme Court for arresting me so they have decided to release me early. I’m very sure that they will re-arrest me again within 10 days”. However, the Uttar Pradesh police have told the media that they decided to release him early because of a request from his mother.

Chandrasekhar Azad was first arrested on 8 June 2017, for his alleged involvement in inter-caste clashes in Saharanpur, Uttar Pradesh in April and May 2017. He was granted bail by the Allahabad High Court on 2 November 2017. The court was reported to have observed that the charges against him were politically motivated. However, before he could even leave jail, Chandrashekar Azad was arrested again under the National Security Act.

Many thanks to everyone who took action. No more action is required from the UA Network.

COLOMBIA

rio cauca_agencia prensa rural_web

Communities affected by Hidroituango dam in Colombia file complaint at IDB | Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (AIDA)

Urgent Action Update: Two Relatives of Environmental Members Killed

On 22 September, two relatives of members of the Rios Vivos Movement were killed in Antioquia, Colombia. These killings come after several others of environmental human rights defenders, members of the same movement, affected by the environmental and human rights impact of the Hidrohituango dam construction.

TAKE ACTION

CHILE

karina-riquelme-680x300

Urgent Action Update: Lawyer at Risk for Defending Indigenous People

Lawyer Karina Riquelme was again intimidated by Chilean police intelligence agents several times because of her work as a defender of Mapuche Indigenous people rights. She fears for her personal security and feels intimidated.

TAKE ACTION

ERITREA

berhane_abrehe

Urgent Action: Ex-Minister Arbitrarily Held After Book Release

Former Eritrean Minister of Finance, Berhane Abrehe, was taken to an undisclosed location by security agents on 17 September. His arbitrary arrest and incommunicado detention come just days after he published a book encouraging Eritreans to peacefully protest against government policies.

TAKE ACTION

NICARAGUA

Amaya-Coppens-2

Amaya Coppens

Urgent Action: Wave of Detentions of Students and Activists

Detention of student leaders and other social activists have increased in Nicaragua as the government persists in its strategy of persecution and criminalization as a punishment against those taking part in nationwide protests.

TAKE ACTION

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Blog September 13-18

Our featured image above shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012),  a great human rights defender

We are publishing a day early this week because of Yom Kippur

We wish our Jewish readers an easy fast and   חתימה טובה

 

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1

Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

 

CHARITY CORNER

Typhoon Mangkhut, a powerful storm 550 miles wide, has pummeled the Philippines, and the full scope of the damage is not yet known. Hurricane Florence has struck the east coast of the United States. The NYTimes provides a guide to helping the victims.

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

Indigenous tribes do not simply die out. They are killed by the actions of so-called civilized nations. Survival International provides a long list of cases in which a letter from you can and will make a difference. Please open this link and write at least one letter. This link will be a permanent feature on our blog and we would be grateful if you gave it a bit of attention each week. We suggest going down the list in the order given. The letters are pre-written for you. All you need to do is send them. It would be nice also if a donation to Survival International could be forthcoming. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

 

THE STRUGGLE AGAINST SLAVERY

We have added this section to the blog in order to join the struggle against slavery worldwide. This week we refer you to the the ILO’s Protocol on Forced Labor which is all about modern slavery. We call your attention to the anti slavery campaign. There you can sign up for action updates.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized.

tackling-modern-slavery-preview
You can download this book

Look for these logos:

 

logo_rfa
utz_certified

 

 

 

 

Find a campaign to work for. Light must be made to shine in the darkest of places. We invite you to join Freedom United        and lend your voice to the call to stop the exploitation of children in orphanages around the world. Unscrupulous individuals are profiting from the trafficking and abuse of children under their care in orphanages across the world. Traffickers, attracted by the funding orphanages receive from donations and organizations offering ‘voluntourism’ placements, effectively turn children into commodities by ensuring there is a constant supply of children who are used to attract funding.

URGENT ACTION CASES

RUSSIA

Mikhail Benyash. Photo: 'Golos Kubani', https://golos-kubani.ru/v-krasnodare-advokata-siloj-vygnali-s-suda-po-delam-zaderzhannyx-na-akcii-protiv-putina/

Urgent Action: Lawyer assaulted and arbitrarily detained in Russia

On 9 September, lawyer Mikhail Benyash was arrested, beaten and detained by police after meeting his client who had taken part in a peaceful protest in Krasnodar, a city in the south of Russia. A court convicted and sentenced Mikhail Benyash to 14 days in administrative detention on 11 September. He is a prisoner of conscience and must be immediately and unconditionally released.

TAKE ACTION

INDONESIA

Image result for meliana case indonesia

Urgent Action: 18 MONTHS IN PRISON FOR MOSQUE NOISE COMPLAINT

Meliana, an ethnic Chinese Buddhist woman, has been convicted of blasphemy and sentenced to 18 months in prison for complaining about the loudspeaker volume at a local mosque. Amnesty International considers her a prisoner of conscience who must be immediately and unconditionally released.

TAKE ACTION

MAURITANIA

Image result for Abdellahi el Housein Mesoud

URGENT ACTION: ANTI-SLAVERY ACTIVISTS ARBITRARILY ARRESTED

Two members of the anti-slavery organization Initiative for the Resurgence of the Abolitionist Movement (IRA) were arbitrarily arrested on 7 August in Nouakchott, west Mauritania. Biram Dah Abeid, IRA president and candidate to the September parliamentarian elections, and Abdellahi el Housein Mesoud have been charged and denied access to legal representation.

TAKE ACTION

IRAN

Image result for Houshmand Alipour and Mohammad Ostadghader

Houshmand Alipour (left) and Mohammad Ostadghader are feared to face death penalty by the Iranian government.

URGENT ACTION: IRANIAN KURDS FORCED TO MAKE TV “CONFESSION”

Iranian Kurds Houshmand Alipour and Mohammad Ostadghader were arrested by security forces on 3 August and held incommunicado for weeks. They were shown on state television on 7 August making a forced “confession” incriminating themselves. They have had little access to their families and no access to lawyers of their choosing.

TAKE ACTION

 

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update August 23-29

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012), a great human rights defender

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

220px-holbein-erasmus1

Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterda

 

bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

 

CHARITY CORNER

This week we turn our attention to the Mercy Corps, a non profit that responds to disasters and need around the world. Their mission statement:

Our mission

Alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping people build secure, productive and just communities.

We believe

  • In the value of every human life and that, as members of a global community, we have a responsibility to support one another.
  • In the right of all people to meet their basic needs, feel hope for their future and have opportunities to thrive.
  • That every man, woman and child deserves to live in a secure, peaceful community and to be empowered to participate in the decisions that affect their lives.

Crisis and challenge provide an opening to act courageously and offer solutions that spark long-term, transformational change.

Mercy Corps is highly rated by     Charity Navigator Charity

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

Indigenous tribes do not simply die out. They are killed by the actions of so-called civilized nations. Survival International provides a long list of cases in which a letter from you can and will make a difference. Please open this link and write at least one letter. This link will be a permanent feature on our blog and we would be grateful if you gave it a bit of attention each week. We suggest going down the list in the order given. The letters are pre-written for you. All you need to do is send them. It would be nice also if a donation to Survival International could be forthcoming. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

A major calamity for indigenous people is enforced contact which can be deadly. Please act for people on the Peruvian contact border.

THE STRUGGLE AGAINST SLAVERY

We have added this section to the blog in order to join the struggle against slavery worldwide. This week we refer you to the the ILO’s Protocol on Forced Labor which is all about modern slavery. We call your attention to the anti slavery campaign. There you can sign up for action updates.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized.

tackling-modern-slavery-preview
You can download this book

Look for these logos:

 

logo_rfa
utz_certified

 

 

 

 

Find a campaign to work for. Light must be made to shine in the darkest of places. We invite you to join Freedom United        and lend your voice to the call to stop forced labor in US jails.

 

URGENT ACTION CASES

RUSSIAN FEDERATION

Urgent Action: PRISONER MUST REMAIN HOSPITALISED POST-SURGERY

ibrahim
24-year old detainee Ibragim Yangulbaev is gravely ill and was being denied essential post-surgery health care in pre-trial detention until 28 July when he was hospitalized. He must be allowed to stay in hospital until full recovery.

TAKE ACTION

RUSSIAN FEDERATION

Urgent Action: JOURNALIST ACCUSED OF ‘JUSTIFICATION OF TERRORISM’

korb
Victor Korb, a human rights defender and journalist, is being unjustly prosecuted for “public justification of terrorism” on account of publishing the final statement of the person whose rights he defends. The charges against him should be dropped immediately.

TAKE ACTION

CHINA

Urgent Action Update: 42 MONTHS IN PRISON FOR FORCIBLY RETURNED ACTIVIST

According to a Chinese media report, Dong Guangping was sentenced to 42 months in prison almost one year after his trial in July 2017. No notification about the trial or sentencing has been communicated with his family and lawyer. Held incommunicado since being forcibly returned from Thailand in 2015, he remains at grave risk of torture.

TAKE ACTION

ANGOLA

Urgent Action: WHEREABOUTS OF COMMUNITY ACTIVIST UNKNOWN

joaquim-480x298
Joaquim Costa Zangui, the National Youth Secretary of the Democratic Bloc, was abducted by unknown men on 12 August 2018. He went missing a day after he had presided over the electoral process to elect the new Residential Commission President in Massaque, Viana Municipality, Angola. His whereabouts remain unknown.

TAKE ACTION

IRAN

Free Mohammed Habibi

Iranian teacher trade unionist Mohammed Habibi was sentenced to ten and a half years in prison on 4 August 2018. The sentence by the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Court also included prohibition of social and political activities for two years, a travel ban of two years, and 74 lashes.  Please support the call for his release.

 

 

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update August 16-22

Our featured image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012) a great human rights defender

220px-holbein-erasmus1

Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.

 

bobmarleysomepeoplefeeltherainquote

CHARITY CORNER

This week we turn our attention to call from Amnesty International to alleviate the terrible situation in Yemen.

Countless children and families in Yemen are dying from war, starvation, and disease. Yet the people in power are ignoring their suffering.  They are dying. It is a forgotten war.

URGENT UPDATE: Yesterday, a bus carrying children was hit by an airstrike. Dozens are dead, even more are injured — most are under the age of 10.

Three years into a brutal war, fierce fighting continues to jeopardize thousands of lives in Yemen. Countless children are dying from war, starvation, and disease. Yet their plight is being ignored.

Make an emergency donation right now to help us stand up to those behind the horrific abuses. The fund raising is being done by Amnesty Australia, but donations are accepted from around the world. You may also donate via Amnesty USA.

DOG HEALTH

We would like to recommend donating to the Morris Animal Foundation  who support cancer research for animals, in particular dogs. We have entered our Murphy in the contest to be on the magazine cover. You may vote for him up to five times at $1 per vote with the proceeds going to the Foundation. Look for him among the 11 dogs named Murphy. He looks like this and is listed under owner name Aharon.

murphy

 

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

Indigenous tribes do not simply die out. They are killed by the actions of so-called civilized nations. Survival International provides a long list of cases in which a letter from you can and will make a difference. Please open this link and write at least one letter. This link will be a permanent feature on our blog and we would be grateful if you gave it a bit of attention each week. We suggest going down the list in the order given. The letters are pre-written for you. All you need to do is send them. It would be nice also if a donation to Survival International could be forthcoming. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

This week we call your attention to the banishment of tribal people in India from the forest to create tiger reserves, which is pernicious nonsense in terms of conservation.

The lives of hundreds of thousands of tribal people in Indian tiger reserves are being destroyed in the name of conservation. The Indian government is illegally evicting them from the land where they have always lived and that they have always protected.

They are accused of harming wildlife. But, far from killing tigers, many tribes worship them as gods and take care of their environment better than anyone else. Where tribal people’s right to stay in a tiger reserve was recognized, tiger numbers soared.

Please call upon the government of India to stop the evictions.

https://assets.survivalinternational.org/pictures/12606/ind-bai-fl-2016-36_article_column.jpg

Baiga man evicted from Kanha National Park. Whole communities have been scattered and destroyed. One evicted Baiga woman told Survival: “We were the kings of the jungle, but here they treat us like dogs. It’s only sadness here”.
© Survival

THE STRUGGLE AGAINST SLAVERY

We have added this section to the blog in order to join the struggle against slavery worldwide. This week we refer you to the the ILO’s Protocol on Forced Labor which is all about modern slavery. We call your attention to the anti slavery campaign. There you can sign up for action updates.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized.

tackling-modern-slavery-preview
You can download this book

Look for these logos:

logo_rfa
utz_certified

 

 

Find a campaign to work for. Light must be made to shine in the darkest of places. We invite you to join Freedom United        and lend your voice to the call to put an end to orphanage child trafficking.

Orphanage-campaign-page

Trafficked orphans

We also call upon you to raise your voice about the rearrest of Biram Dah Abeid who is a leading anti-slavery activist in Mauritania, the country with the highest prevalence of slavery in the world1. The organization he founded, the Initiative for the Resurgence of the Abolitionist Movement2 has fought for the freedom of countless men, women and children.

Mauritania fully outlawed slavery in 2007 but has systematically failed to end it in practice. It has fallen to activists like Biram to fight for people’s’ freedom and they face regular harassment and harsh treatment in their campaigning.

Please call on the Mauritanian government to free Biram Dah Abeid and his fellow anti-slavery activists.

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URGENT ACTION CASES

ANGOLA

Urgent Action Victory! – COURT OVERTURNS CONVICTION OF THREE YOUTHS

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Afonso S. Muatchipuculo (22), António J. Fernando (18) and Justino H. Valente (21) were released from a detention facility 50km away from Malange city on 17 July. This is after the Supreme Court ruled that there was insufficient evidence to prove that they were involved in throwing stones at the Vice-President’s convoy during a demonstration.

The three were arrested on 4 April at the market while on their way home. About 4km away from where they were, at the Malange City Pavilion, the Vice-President’s convoy was met by over 100 protestors demanding the removal of the Malange Provincial Governor upon arrival at the Pavillion. The police chief claimed to have identified them as being among the protestors who threw stones at the Vice-President’s convoy by the colour of their shirts.

They were tried and sentenced to seven months in prison on 9 April in an unfair trial without a lawyer present. The prosecution did not produce any witnesses to provide testimony. The defendants were not given the opportunity to challenge the evidence presented against them, cross-examine the chief of police and even call witnesses.

Helena Mutaleno da Silva, Justino’s sister, thanked Amnesty International, among others, for campaigning for the release of the three youth.

Thank you to all those who sent appeals. No further action is requested from the UA network.

TURKEY

Amnesty Turkey’s Chair released after more than a year behind bars

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Following the release of Honorary Chair of Amnesty International Turkey, Taner Kilic after more than fourteen months behind bars, Kumi Naidoo, Amnesty International’s new Secretary General said:

“We are overjoyed at this news. It has taken us more than a year of campaigning and struggle to get here but Taner has finally been freed and is safely back at the arms of his wife and daughters. It has taken us more than a year of campaigning and struggle to get here but Taner has finally been freed and is safely back at the arms of his wife and daughters.”

The Secretary-General added:

“But beneath the smiles of joy and relief there will be sorrow, anger and a steely determination. Sorrow for all the things Taner has missed during his cruel incarceration. Anger that the baseless charges against him and the Istanbul 10 have not been dropped. And determination to continue our fight for human rights in Turkey and for the release of all those who have been unjustly jailed in the vicious crackdown.

Beneath the smiles of joy and relief there is a steely determination to continue our fight for human rights in Turkey and for the release of all those human rights defenders, journalists and others who have been unjustly jailed in the vicious crackdown

Today we take a moment to celebrate, but tomorrow our struggle will continue, re-energized by the example set by Taner himself: a man who knows the importance of human rights and is willing to dedicate his life to defending them.”

PARAGUAY

Urgent Action: Indigenous leader threatened by armed men

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Amada Martínez, human rights defender from the Tekoha Sauce Indigenous community of the Avá Guaraní People in south-east Paraguay, was threatened by three armed men wearing uniforms of the Itaipú Binational (Paraguay-Brazil) hydroelectric plant on 8 August, in the presence of three minors, her sister and a taxi driver.

TAKE ACTION

VENEZUELA

Urgent Action: INDIGENOUS ACTIVIST SLANDERED AND STIGMATIZED

Military official accuses Venezuelan Indigenous environmental rights defender Lisa Henrito of “treason” – on national television – due to her activism in the defense of the Pemón Indigenous People’s traditional territory.

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GUATEMALA

Urgent Action Update: Women HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDER KILLED

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Human rights defender Juana Raymundo went missing on the night of 27 July in the Quiché department in northwest Guatemala and her dead body was discovered the next day. She was 25 years old, and a member of the Campesino Development Committee (Comité de Desarrollo Campesino, CODECA). She is the 8th human rights defender killed in Guatemala in less than three months.

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BANGLADESH

Urgent Action: ACTIVIST FACES 14 YEARS IN JAIL FOR MEDIA INTERVIEW

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Shahidul Alam, photographer and outspoken social activist, has been charged under Section 57 of Bangladesh’s Information and Communication Technology Act after giving an interview to Al-Jazeera on the current wave of school student protests in Bangladesh. Detained and charged solely for exercising his right to freedom of expression, Shahidul Alam must be immediately and unconditionally released.

TAKE ACTION

INDONESIA/MARRIOTT HOTEL

No rights for workers at Marriott’s Bali paradise

Global hotel giant Marriott’s 5-star W hotel in Bali-Seminyak, Indonesia promises guests a “stay in paradise’. But there’s trouble in paradise for workers at the hotel who attempt to exercise their basic rights.  Please join the protest.

The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update Blog July 26-August 1

Our featured image above shows our beloved Miriam, a great human rights defender.

HE WHO PERMITS OPPRESSION PERMITS CRIMES.-Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)

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Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”

 

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CHARITY CORNER

This week we turn our attention BRAC, (Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (now Building Resources Across Communities) ) an international development organization based in Bangladesh.

It has a high rating from Charity Navigator.

Our Vision

A world free from all forms of exploitation and discrimination where everyone has the opportunity to realize their potential.

Our Mission

Our mission is to empower people and communities in situations of poverty, illiteracy, disease and social injustice. Our interventions aim to achieve large scale, positive changes through economic and social programes that enable men and women to realise their potential.

Our Values

Integrity.
Innovation.
Inclusiveness.
Effectiveness.

 

This charity is highly rated by Charity Watch.

 

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

Indigenous tribes do not simply die out. They are killed by the actions of so-called civilized nations. Survival International provides a long list of cases in which a letter from you can and will make a difference. Please open this link and write at least one letter. This link will be a permanent feature on our blog and we would be grateful if you gave it a bit of attention each week. We suggest going down the list in the order given. The letters are pre-written for you. All you need to do is send them. It would be nice also if a donation to Survival International could be forthcoming. They are the best conservationists--help that fact go viral.

Please Help Uncontacted tribes

Uncontacted tribes are the most vulnerable peoples on the planet. They face catastrophe unless their land is protected. We’re doing everything we can to secure their land for them, and to give them the chance to determine their own futures.

Email the governments of Brazil, Paraguay, Peru and India, to allow uncontacted tribes to survive.

Sign the global declaration for uncontacted tribes.

Say NO to funding cuts which could wipe out uncontacted Indians in Brazil.

Help the Yanomami Indians of Venezuela and Brazil who are dying from a devastating measles epidemic.

THE STRUGGLE AGAINST SLAVERY

We have added this section to the blog in order to join the struggle against slavery worldwide. This week we refer you to the the ILO’s Protocol on Forced Labor which is all about modern slavery. We call your attention to the anti slavery campaign. There you can sign up for action updates.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized.

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You can download this book

Look for these logos:

 

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Find a campaign to work for. Light must be made to shine in the darkest of places. We invite you to join Freedom United        and lend your voice to the call to end forced labor in the cotton fields of Uzbekhistan.

URGENT ACTION CASES

USA

Urgent Action Victory! – OHIO GOVERNOR COMMUTES DEATH SENTENCE

On 20 July, the Governor of Ohio commuted the death sentence of Raymond Tibbetts, who was scheduled for execution on 17 October. In so doing, the governor rejected the parole board’s 8-1 recommendation against clemency.

On 8 February 2018, five days before Raymond Tibbetts was due to be executed for the 1997 murder of Fred Hicks, the Ohio Governor issued an eight-month reprieve and sent the case back to the parole board after he received a letter in favour of clemency from a man who had served as a juror on the case and had since learned of the mitigation evidence not presented at the 1998 trial. The juror wrote that “[b]ased on what I know today I would not have recommended the death penalty.” In 2011, a federal judge described the trial lawyer’s “failure to engage in basic preparation” of evidence about Raymond Tibbetts’ traumatic upbringing, and wrote that evidence revealed since showed “a much more chaotic and abusive environment” in parental and foster care than the jurors heard about. These “shocking” and “utterly disturbing” details would have given jurors “compelling” reasons to vote for life. Under Ohio law, just one juror voting against the death penalty would have made resulted in life imprisonment.

The parole board, which had recommended against clemency in January 2017, reconsidered the case at a supplementary hearing on 14 June 2018. On 22 June, it again recommended against clemency, by eight votes to one. The majority said they doubted that the juror, who had told them it was an “almost absolute certainty” that he would have voted for life imprisonment without the possibility of parole if he had known what he knows now, would have made a different decision at the trial if the jury had been presented with the mitigation evidence in question. The juror also told the Board that he was “troubled by the prosecution’s response to the defense’s presentation and feels that it was misleading”, and that the “prosecution implied going into foster care was a good thing for Tibbetts”, even though records the defence possessed at the time showed otherwise.

On 20 July, Governor John Kasich announced that he was commuting the death sentence. He explained that “Tibbets’s commutation is being granted as a result of fundamental flaws in sentencing phase of his trial. Specifically, the defense’s failure to present sufficient mitigating evidence, coupled with an inaccurate description of Tibbetts’s childhood by the prosecution, essentially prevented the jury from making an informed decision about whether Tibbetts deserved the death penalty.”

There have been 1,479 executions in the USA since they resumed in 1977 under new capital laws approved by the Supreme Court in 1976. Ohio accounts for 56 of these executions. There have been 14 executions in the USA this year. Amnesty International opposes the death penalty, unconditionally. Today 142 countries are abolitionist in law or practice.

Many thanks to all who sent appeals. No further action by the UA Network is requested.

BELARUS

Urgent Action: IRANIAN IN BELARUS AT RISK OF IMMINENT DEPORTATION

Iranian citizen Mehrdad Jamshidian, who suffers from acute ill-health, was detained on 14 June in Belarus. He is at imminent risk of deportation to Iran, where he may be subjected to torture and the death penalty for ‘apostasy’ and murder accusations.

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RUSSIAN FEDERATION

Urgent Action Update: Russia Must Release Ukrainian Film Director

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Ukrainian film director, Oleg Sentsov started a hunger strike on 14 May, calling for the release of ‘all Ukrainian political prisoners’ who are currently being held by the Russian Federation. Oleg Sentsov is serving a 20-year prison sentence following an unfair trial on politically-motivated charges. Amnesty International is calling for his immediate release.

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CHINA

Urgent Action Update: HANDS AND FEET OF LAWYER CUFFED TO IRON CHAIR

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Jailed human rights lawyer Jiang Tianyong continues to endure deplorable prison conditions, resulting in a further deterioration of his physical and mental health. Denied access to the verdict against him, Jiang’s family and lawyers cannot verify his release date. He remains imminent risk of torture and other ill-treatments.

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MYANMAR

Urgent Action: FORMER CHILD SOLDIER JAILED AFTER MEDIA INTERVIEW

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Former child solider Aung Ko Htwe is serving two years and six months in prison in connection with a media interview he gave about his experiences in the Myanmar military. He faces a further three years in prison after he protested his conviction. He should be immediately and unconditionally released.

TAKE ACTION

TURKEY

Stop the attack on rights at Cargill Turkey – Reinstate #TheCargill14 now!

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Fourteen union activists have been continually protesting after being unfairly dismissed from their jobs on April 17, 2018 while organizing a union at Cargill-Turkey’s corn-milling facility in Bursa-Orhangazi.  Please join the protest.