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(en) SchNEWS 384, Friday 6th December, 2002

From Jo Makepeace <webmaster@schnews.org.uk>
Date Fri, 6 Dec 2002 01:26:57 -0500 (EST)

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E


Next Tuesday is International Human Rights Day - 54 years since the signing
of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which amongst
other things declared, 'All human beings are born free and equal in dignity
and rights.'

Apparently the British government decided to get in on the celebrations a
bit early this year by releasing a 23-page dossier on Iraqi human rights
abuses, with foreign secretary, Jack Straw, telling the world, "It is
important that people understand the comprehensive evil which is Saddam

SchNEWS has no problem with spelling out the fact that Saddam is a torturing
evil scumbag, but as Richard Bunting of Amnesty International pointed out,
"Iraq's human rights record is appalling, but we have been saying this for
years. The British and US are being selective, conveniently ignoring other
countries and using this record to drive forward foreign and military

Even the Iraqi dissident that Neo-Labour dragged out to support the dossier
said he was "opposed to a war that may cause the Iraqi people a great loss
of life and infrastructure." Hussain al-Shahristani, a former nuclear
scientist, was tortured and jailed for 11 years for refusing to work on
Saddam's secret nuclear programme, and is now head of the Iraqi Refugee Aid
Council. "When I was in jail," he added, "I was held with British-made
handcuffs. In the cells next door, I could hear the screams of people who
were having holes drilled into their bones. Those drills were made in
Britain.The dossier about human rights abuses is correct. Each of the events
took place. But I am critical of the silence of Britain and other European
countries for over two decades about these abuses."

That's because when it comes to human rights abuses, governments seem to
have selective amnesia about just who are the world's bad guys.

Before Iraq invaded Kuwait, the UK government supported President Saddam and
British companies helped arm him. After the gassing of the Kurds at Halabja,
British ministers and officials tried to blame the chemical attack on Iran.
Human Rights Watch said that when it collected evidence of Saddam's abuses
at Halabja and elsewhere in the Kurdish area of Iraq, the Foreign Office
ignored it.

Or what about Turkey, who've been busy repressing the Kurdish people without
anyone so much as batting an eyelid. Arbitrary arrest, detention, torture,
disappearances, extra-judicial killings, the banning of political opposition
and harassment of human rights groups are just some of the treats in store
for you if you're Kurdish. Add to that the fact that Kurdish language,
names, music, culture, and clothing are outlawed. Conservative estimates
reckon that in the past 15 years, Turkish Security Forces have destroyed
4000 Kurdish villages - leaving 30,000 dead and 3 million driven from their

So Kurds fighting Iraq are good, but Kurds fighting against Turkey are bad
because Turkey is a member of NATO and an important ally of the United
States thanks to its strategically placed air bases.


And now the American public can rest easy knowing that human rights champion
Henry Kissinger is to head an 'independent' commission to investigate the
attacks on America on September 11th. Who better to investigate 9/11 than
Kissinger, the man behind untold amounts of state-sponsored terrorism and
wanted across the world as a war criminal! A proven liar has been assigned
the task of finding the truth. Brilliant!

As war criminals go, Kissinger is in the premier league. During the Vietnam
War he was co-architect with Nixon in the secret bombing campaign of
Cambodia, which is estimated to have claimed the lives of hundreds of
thousands of civilians.

In 1971, Pakistani General Yahya Khan, armed with U.S. weaponry, overthrew a
democratically elected government in Bangladesh - an action that led to a
massive civilian bloodbath. Kissinger blocked U.S. condemnation of Khan and
instead noted the General's "delicacy and tact."

In the early 1970s, Kissinger masterminded the CIA's $8 million campaign to
overthrow the democratically elected government of Salvador Allende in
Chile. When Allende won power, all US aid was cut and Kissinger announced,
"The issues are much too important for the Chilean voters to be left to
decide for themselves." So in came the murderous military dictatorship of
Augusto Pinochet. On June 8, 1976, at the height of Pinochet's repression,
Kissinger had a meeting with the dictator, telling him, "We are sympathetic
to what you are trying to do here."

In 1975, President Gerald Ford and Kissinger offered advance approval of
Indonesia's brutal invasion of East Timor, where tens of thousands of East
Timorese were killed.

In 1976, as the Argentinan military junta was beginning its so-called "dirty
war" against supposed subversives - between 9,000 and 30,000 people would be
"disappeared" by the military over the next seven years - Argentina's
foreign minister met with Kissinger and received what he believed was
encouragement for his government's violent efforts. A few years later
Kissinger travelled to Buenos Aires as the guest of dictator General Jorge
Rafael Videla and praised the junta for having done, "an outstanding job in
wiping out terrorist forces."

As journalist David Corn points out, "For many in the world, Kissinger is a
symbol of U.S. arrogance and the misuse of American might. In power, he
cared more for U.S. credibility and geostrategic advantage than for human
rights and open government."

As the declaration goes 'All human beings are born free and equal', it just
seems that some are a lot more free and a lot more equal than others.

Check out all yer favourite war criminals www.icai-online.org

* There are lots of actions planned on Tuesday to support refugees,
including a demonstration outside the Crown Prosecution Service organised by
the Justice In the Yarl's Wood Trial Campaign, 5-6pm, 50 Ludgate Hill,
London. EC4M 7EX (more info 07786 517379 ginn_emma@hotmail.com). Human
Rights are Human Rights - Public meeting, Room 3c, University of London
Union, Malet Street, W1 7.30pm. Speakers include Civil rights lawyer Louise
Christian, and Emma Ginn, Campaign for Justice In the Yarl's Wood Trial
(info@defend-asylum.org). For other events, check out SchNEWS Party and
Protest guide on our website.


For sending an e-mail!
When veteran Icelandic peacenik Asthor Magnusson warned fellow citizens that
their government was allocating £3m of their money to transport US weapons
and using troops to murder the people of Iraq, he found himself in solitary
confinement!He now faces a possible 3-year sentence. www.peace2000.org


A national demonstration and weapons inspection on Saturday 14th December.
US stealth bombers are being deployed at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire on
their way to carpet bomb Iraq. We want these weapons of mass destruction
removed. Transport from across the country.
More info: http://bristol.indymedia.org

* Brighton coach leaves St Peters Church at 8.30am Tickets £6 from The
Druids Pub, Ditchling Rise, or from the Sussex Action for Peace stall,
Gardner St, Saturday 2-4pm. 01273 298192 www.safp.org.uk


18 years after one of the worst chemical leaks in history, the people of
Bhopal are still waiting for justice in the wake of the Union Carbide
disaster. Proving how little the powers that be actually care about people's
suffering, Dow Chemicals (who now own Union Carbide) have told the people of
Bhopal that there'll be no compensation or clean-up because it would piss
off shareholders and fellow Multinationals.

On the 25th of November, a group of survivors of Union Carbide and
supporters of the Campaign for Justice in Bhopal tried to clean up some of
the toxic waste that's still poisoning their land and water supplies. Police
waded in and 100 were arrested.

Neither the government nor Dow have done anything to protect the health of
the people living round the factory site. More than 20,000 have now died as
a direct result of the disastrous pesticide leak at the Union Carbide
factory on December 3rd 1984. And a further 150 000 have been left
chronically ill. Unsurprisingly, Dow hasn't paid a cent towards the victims'
often massive medical bills.

Though every single legal investigation has found Union Carbide guilty of
criminal negligence, both Union Carbide and Dow have consistently denied
these findings. "We understand the anger and hurt," said Dow Spokesperson
Bob Questra. "But Dow does not and cannot acknowledge responsibility. Our
responsibility is to our shareholders. If we accepted responsibility we
would be required to expend many billions of dollars on cleanup and
compensation - much worse, the public could then point to Dow as a precedent
in other big cases. We are unable to set this precedent for ourselves and
the industry, much as we would like to see the issue resolved in a humane
and satisfying way."

Shareholders are delighted. One said, "Bhopal is a recurrent problem that's
clogging our value chain and ultimately keeping the share price from
expressing its full potential. This has cleared the way." www.bhopal.net


Stingy Brighton Council want to evict a group of Irish Travellers from a
derelict site at Preston Barracks. The site's been abandoned for years, but
the Council has suddenly decided they need it for "development". Planning
permission couldn't go through before the end of 2003 at the earliest and
the travellers say they only want to stay 'til January anyway. Nevertheless,
the Council are considering sending in their heavies to evict the site. Why
not ring the council and give your support to the travellers. Pat Foster
01273-290000 or Heather James 01273-291142 ** An Italian priest from a small
town near Naples was last week sacked because, according to his superiors,
his behaviour is 'scandalous to the faithful'. His crimes were to speak at a
Gay Pride march and join anti-capitalist protesters at the Genoa G8 summit.
The priest's faithful local parishioners are furious at the decision and are
planning the biggest march in the town's recent history to demand he's
reinstated. ** This Sat (7) March with the Firefighters. Noon, Cleopatra's
needle, Embankment, London. www.fp4f.com ** Also this weekend, Youth &
Student CND National Gathering with workshops, talks, and video screenings.
LARC, 62 Fieldgate St, Whitechapel, London. Contact in advance if you need
accommodation 020 7607 3616 info@youthstudentcnd.org.uk ** 'How UK Foreign
Investment Creates Asylum Seekers', seminar and launch of new Ilisu Dam
Campaign Project. This Sat (8) 1-6pm, at the Kurdish Community Centre, 11
Portland Gardens, London N4. 0787 6771576 rochelle.harris@ukonline.co.uk **
Brighton Council will decide on the controversial Brighton Station
development, which includes another Sainsbury's store and posh hotels. Noon,
11th Dec, Hove Town Hall. 01273 681166 www.buddbrighton.org ** Xmas Benefit
night for the Simon Jones Memorial Campaign and Mosaic Mixed and Black
Parentage Family Group, Dec 12th, 11pm-3am, Concorde 2, Madeira Drive,
Brighton. ** If you didn't vote at the last election, feel good about it and
check out www.vetothevote.com for more about our so-called democracy. **
Sub-Cultural Radikal Arts Productions presents Wreck n' Roll Cirkus, Friday
13th, loadsa musik and subversion. 9.30pm- 6am, The Imperial Gardens, 199
Camberwell New Road, London. £7 b4 11pm, £10 after. 077731334958 ** Workers
Left Unity - Iran meeting in solidarity with the growing protest movement
and in support of Iranian students, journalists, writers and workers. 13th
Dec, 6pm.  NUJ Building 308 Grays Inn Road, London WC1web@etehadchap.com **
West Papua Solidarity Fri 20th  'The Wick'25 Whitepost Rd, Hackney Wick (Bus
276) after 8pm £3/2-Disruptive Element + support


A coalition of Canadian peace groups is sending an international team of
volunteer weapons inspectors to the US this winter. "Rooting Out Evil" are
to send inspectors to the US and want unhindered access to all sites,
including presidential compounds. A spokesperson said, "On the basis of Bush
's guidelines, it is clear that the current U.S. administration poses a
great threat to global security." See www.rootingoutevil.org **  Two day
'training' event in Oxford this weekend (7-8) in preparation for next
weekends weapons inspection at Fairford airbase. 01865 794 504
greening_paul@hotmail.com ** It is twenty years since 30,000 women
demonstrated against the US's nuclear cruise missiles at Greenham Common and
this is being celebrated at Womenwith Hill Women's Peace Camp next Thursday
(12), Embrace the Base: 10 am - 4 pm. The next day, Blockade the Base:
Non-violent direct action. Info: 01943 468593 flossiemintballs@aol.com **
Last Monday 250 people staged a 'die in' in Whitehall. Part of the road was
blocked for 5 hours in protest against the war. 35 people were arrested for
obstruction of the highway. www.viwuk.freeserve.co.uk ** Make a pledge to
engage in civil disobedience if war starts at www.j-n-v.org ** 'The Fire
this Time', a CD by Grant Wakefield which charts the history of the West's
manipulation of the political landscape in the Middle East with background
tunes from the Aphex and Orbital, is out now. www.firethistime.org ** Stop
the War have just released 'Peace Not War' benefit CD compilation including
tracks from Public Enemy, Fun-da-mental, Massive Attack, Billy Bragg and
even Crass. Available in most record shops www.peace-not-war.org


Workers in Ozarow Poland have been rioting against the closure of their
telephone cable factory. They rejected the measly payoff they were offered,
and instead started a 219 day occupation of the factory which ended abruptly
two weeks ago when several buses of security guards violently evicted the
protesters. There's been mass solidarity with the workers and small groups
of anarchists from around Poland have joined them in helping with blockades
around the factory and organising various ambushes on trucks leaving the
site. As one Polish anarchist said, "As soon as we started harassing
security guards in a more organised way, they started living in a state of
permanent siege, hiding inside the factory behind barricades they built to
be protected from us. All day and night black bloc, workers, and small group
of local hooligans attacked them. Lots of workers were amazed by our way of
fighting." This pressure has triggered new negotiations, but across Poland
the number of strikes are growing because of worsening economic conditions.


On Monday morning, protestors from Rising Tide, who campaign for climate
change justice, performed an environmental and social impact assessment of
the London office of Environmental Resource Management (ERM), with some
barricading themselves in the directors office and hanging out a banner 'Oil
is War.' ERM has been carrying out research work for oil giant BP on the
proposed 1,770-km pipeline from Baku in Azerbaijan through Georgia to the
port of Ceyhan in Turkey. ERM's role is to greenwash the whole project-it
plays a crucial role in convincing public funders to give financial backing
to the scheme. www.ermconcerns.com

Meanwhile, last week in Tbilisi, the Georgian capital, a group of people
paid a friendly visit to the office of the Georgian International Oil
Company, one of BP's partners in the pipeline project. The protest came in
response to the Georgian Government's decision to issue permission for
construction of the pipeline by November 30th. The decision violates
Georgian environmental legislation, as it allows the pipeline to pass
through protected areas and water sanctuary zones in the sensitive Borjomi
Gorge. The decision, the Government says, was made to meet the project
timeline and thus fulfil BP's requirements.

Rising Tide network 01865 241097, www.risingtide.org.uk.


The five animal rights activists who were facing jail sentences for
"conspiracy to hold a protest" at the Old Surrey and Burstow Hunt Kennels
(see last week's SchNEWS) have all escaped  prison sentences. Instead,
thanks to the judge reading last week's SchNEWS of course, they were
sentenced to do community service of between 200 and 240 hours, plus court
In a further blow for the Hunt, a protester had his conviction for
Harassment overturned. The judge ruled that the charge was an abuse of the
Protection from Harassment Act (originally introduced to prevent stalking of
women). He cited a case in the High Court where it was ruled that the Act
should not be used to prevent political protest.


Some passionate Sydney activists puckered up for a mass game of "Spin the
Bottle" outside the New South Wales State Parliament last month and managed
to tally up a smouldering 154 kisses between them. Apart from giving
themselves severely chapped lips, they were protesting against the
confiscation of the Spin The Bottle Bloc's six-foot papier mache bottle at
the anti- World Trade Organisation demos which took place in Sydney last

The confiscation of the bottle was "justified" by the Sydney police because
they believed protestors were planning a violent confrontation, as proved by
the Spin the Bottle Bloc's own communication, which read, "We invite you to
join us for the most militant game of spin the bottle ever attempted -
turning up the heat until every kiss becomes a molotov." The police, who
obviously don't know much about the power of love or the classic teenage
party game, have refused to return the bottle, though they obviously won't
have much use for it themselves http://sydney.indymedia.org

SchNEWS warns all right on readers we print the right stuff not out right
lies. In our right old carry on there's no rights left out despite writers
cramp. Honest.

If you don't believe Santa Claus exists here's something for yer granny's
stocking or that anarchist who hasn't got everything...
As a Xmas offer we're flogging from our grotto the new SchNEWS Of The
World - issues 301-350 for £7!! Past books are goin' cheap... SchNEWSround
issues 51-100 - nearly sold out - £5; SchNEWS annual issues 101-150 - going
for £3!! Survival Handbook issues 151-200 - also at £3; SchQUALL issues
201-250 - almost sold out - £7; Yearbook 2001 issues 251-300 - bargain £5.
Add £1.50 p&p for each book, cheques to Justice? Honest!

In addition to 50 issues of SchNEWS, each book contains articles,
photos, cartoons, subverts, a "yellow pages" list of contacts, comedy
etc. You can also order the books from a bookshop or library.

Subscribe to SchNEWS: Send 1st Class stamps (e.g. 10 for next 9 issues)or
donations (payable to Justice?). Or £15 for a year's subscription, or the
SchNEWS supporter's rate, £1 a week. Ask for "originals" if you plan to copy
and distribute. SchNEWS is post-free to prisoners.

SchNEWS, PO Box 2600, Brighton, BN2 0EF, England
Phone/Fax: +44 (0)1273 685913
email: schnews@brighton.co.uk

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SchNEWS Of The World is now ONLINE! It might not be as good as the whiff of
freshly printed pages in yer hand, but you can now read nearly all the book
on www.schnews.org.uk (and the pics are in colour!). Sorry it's only the
serious articles, none of the satire/subverts/cartoons are there (yet). If
you really need that printed copy however - order one from us for £7 plus
£1.50 p&p (see details on our website). ISBN 09529748-6-X, 300 pages, issues

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