This park in the Old City commemorates the Syriac Genocide by the Muslim Ottoman (Turkish) army, together with other Muslim peoples. These included Kurds, Chechens and Circassians, between 1914 and 1920 during and after WWI.
Eyewitness accounts and quotes
Statement of German Missionaries on Urmia.
There was absolutely no human power to protect these unhappy people from the savage onslaught of the invading hostile forces. It was an awful situation. At midnight the triple exodus began; a concourse of 25,000 men, women and children Assyrians and Armenians, leaving cattle in stables, all their household goods and all the supply of food for the winter, hurried, panic-stricken, on a long and painful journey to the Russian border, enduring the intense privations of a foot journey in the snow and mud, without any kind of preparation. … It was a dreadful sight … many of the old people and children died along the way. 
The latest news is that four thousand Assyrians and one hundred Armenians have died of disease alone, at the mission, within the last five months. All villages in the surrounding district with two or three exceptions have been plundered and burnt; twenty thousand Christians have been slaughtered in Armenia and its environs. In Haftewan, a village of Salmas, 750 corpses without heads have been recovered from the wells and cisterns alone. Why? Because the commanding officer had put a price on every Christian head … In Dlman crowds of Christians were thrown into prison and driven to accept Islam. 
The Armenian Genocide: Looking Back, Moving Forward
The Armenian Genocide is no longer a silent issue in Turkey. The Kurdish awakening over the last 30 years has led to major changes in the political landscape of that country. Kurdish leaders today, as well as millions of others, acknowledge the participation of Kurds in the genocide of Armenians and seek to make amends. (This film is largely based on materials from Diyarbakir between 2012-13).
 Yohannan. The Death of a Nation, pp. 126–127
Harry Williams: OK…Christine, umm I wanna take you back, way back. Ahhh Julian as a child, was he a sort of risk taking, independent, possibly uncontrollable child
Christine Assange: He wasn’t uncontrollable at all, he was a lovely little boy … he’s very curious, very bright umm and the question he asked most was why and so we would spend time discussing the various theories around the answer. He enjoyed thinking about all the different reasons why, not just wanting to have whatever I said. In many ways he was a normal little boy, he used to go off with his friends adventuring, we always lived in the country and he had a dog and he’d built rafts on the river and he very much loved to read. I would read to him every night … we would read adventure stories, the classics, the Greek legends, fairy tales, Robin Hood … the Incredible Journey. I suppose the theme in all the stories was about good triumphing over evil after a terrible struggle, I think all children enjoy that.
Harry Williams: Thank you…Sounds just like me, when I was a kid…Now, as you can see tonight we’ve got a fair volume of people in attendance and in fact possibly more than I’d hoped we’d get. So, beside Newcastle and you can see there’s a lot of people interested in what you have got to say, ah how are you sort of finding public support in general across Australia? It is comforting to you?
Christine Assange: When people know the facts of the case then they’re almost 100% supportive. The problem is that the mainstream media isn’t giving people the facts … the support comes from some unusual places … does anyone here, has anyone heard of the, you know that Julian and WikiLeaks have won many awards but has anyone heard of the Sam Adams Award? Put your hand up if you’ve heard of it … yes, the mainstream media really wouldn’t like you to know about this one. In 2010 Julian was awarded … the Sam Adams Award for Intelligence for integrity in Intelligence and that was awarded by a panel of retired senior US Military and Intelligence Personnel (laughter and applause!). It was given to him because of his very accurate portrayal of what it’s like, what it’s really like in war … the Afghan War Logs and there isn’t anybody who knows what war is like better than a soldier, or what the Intelligence community it up to better than a CIA Officer. But the support is growing umm as you can see here, there’s many people here this evening there’s many people here tonight from Newcastle, I’ve had a wonderful response from Newcastle, thanks so much, give yourselves a big clap (applause). The reason I have had to come here and go round the Country on panels is because the mainstream media won’t report the facts of the case. I haven’t seen the leaflets, do they have any links to them, that people can…the leaflets, do you have any links on those? Ok, alright, I encourage you to have a look at that, particularly what your own Government knows, now … you might like to ask that question actually … I’ll back to you (laughter).
Harry Williams: You can ask yourself questions, make me redundant, I don’t care. Yeah, um, until I get into that question um … How do you, I mean, do you have any fear about him, especially considering he is taking on the World’s only superpower, do you have any fear within yourself, any deep seated fears on what, any possible outcome may be?
Christine Assange: I would be very naive if I didn’t. Um back in 2010 there was a one hundred and twenty man task force up against Julian and that was two years ago. You can imagine how big it is now … the cable coming from the Australian Embassy in Washington stated that the investigation into Julian and WikiLeaks was unprecedented in scale and nature, it was bigger than Osama bin Laden and they are using all the resources. The Stratfor emails that you may have seen in the media the Global Intelligence Company, they have been working day and night, there are four thousand emails, as I think one of the speakers said, about Julian, that they intend to water board him … to make him a bride in prison and we all know what that means, that’s a horrible thing for a Mother to have to think of, um … they’re going to bankrupt the bastard, ruin his life. Well, they have already made him bankrupt and they’re ruining his life. Another Intelligence data company HB Gary that Anonymous broke into, hacked into, multimillion dollar Company employed by the Bank of America had a power point demonstration that looked like a Military strategy um satellite photos and the rest of it and um and we see what’s happening in Sweden, as a result of them going to set him up, they did set him up, they set him up on sexual allegations in Sweden, and that’s a holding case awaiting a US extradition. What people may not realise is how a um US extradition comes about and in this case in comes about via what’s called a Secret Grand Jury and Kellie made reference to Virginia with a little smirk on her face. The reason she was making that little smirk on her face is that Alexandra, in Virginia, is where they hold the Grand Jury, and there’s a reason for that, that’s the highest concentration of Military Contractor families and that’s where the jury pool will be taken, in the jury looking at the evidence against Julian. But just to ensure they get their conviction they are going to have four Prosecutors and no Defence materials allowed or a judge. So on the basis of the lack of due process in determining that indictment, no Country in the World should honour it and this Country should not honour it and this Country should require that Sweden and the UK not honour it because it is not due process.
Harry Williams: Thank you ummm….one of the other questions is on a bit of a personal note, when was the last time you spoke to Julian or arh made other contact and if you do, how frequently do you contact him?
Christine Assange: I spoke with him a couple of days ago, um I don’t have as much contact as he or I would like unfortunately our ‘phones are monitored so, we can’t actually be frank with each other. So that’s put a dampener on our relationship but there’s love there, and I’m fighting for him and he knows that. I’m looking forward to seeing him and I hope he will come home soon but I need him to come home to a Government that is going to protect him, not a Government that is demonising him and changing extradition bill amendments four days before and expected Supreme Court decision. I don’t know if you are aware of this but um on the 29th of February, under the cover of the leadership spill and the new Carr appointment an extradition amendment …amendment to the extradition act and criminal mutual and legal assistance act was past. For the first time now in Australia’s history, we, Aussies, can be extradited for minor offences, also the protections of, of having a political nature to your case have been very much slackened off, as is the protection of the death penalty, as is the protection of dual criminality. At the same time Americans are ramping up Copyright Legislations around the World in everybody’s Country, Eric Holder, the Attorney General has stated that he would do anything to get Julian and he is looking at every loophole there’s a possibility that with the United States saying that they are going to try and Copyright Public Works, that he could go for something as small as a Copyright infringement from Australia now and then be held under the NDAA amendments signed as the Professor was talking about and never see a trial.
Harry Williams: So, I take it that from your question or from that answer, I take it that you know that they are ease dropping on every bit of conversation you have with Julian?
Christine Assange: This is not supposition, I’ve had ‘phones that have burnt out. I don’t want to get into all this CIA stuff really, but it’s no great news to anybody. Given, the information that has come out of WikiLeaks, about the Global Intelligence Agencies, the shadow CIAs they’re called, Stratfor the Global Intelligence Files that were all monitored. My ‘phone holds a charge for about two hours, you know, obviously they know what to know what I’m talking about, funny messages on the ‘phone. But that’s not really the issue here, the issue is Julian and what they are going to do to him. They torture their own Bradley Manning is being tortured. The UN Rapporteur on Torture Juan Mendez, has stated he is being tortured. 60 Members of the European Parliament have written in protest to President Obama. So they torture their own, what are they going to do to my Son.
Harry Williams: Christine, thank you. You did mention a word in your response there about being demonised and I mean everybody here would know that the easiest way that you deconstruct your opponent is to demonise them. It happened to Saddam Hussein and his weapons of mass destruction, Ghadhafi that infamous Murdoch Press ad with him strutting around with women’s clothes on and all this other rubbish that went on and yet with Julian I’ve heard the words eccentric being tossed about. I heard the word…that crazy Aussie, that white haired Aussie…you know, this is all the time being bandied around the press as though he’s some sort of mentally unstable person.
Christine Assange: As Kellie said, not one person was hurt by the information that WikiLeaks released the American cables etc., not one US Politician has stated that those cables were not valid, so what have they got left? They have to smear Julian, what else can they do? So they’re going into overdrive. There’s great big comments about his hair, he’s got this weird, this white haired weirdo. Well, if you’ve got Celtic genes your hair goes grey earlier. If you go through a Family Court case like Julian does, you go through it…you go through it even earlier, if you’ve been to Family Court, you’ll know that. Even if what you were doing, you were in the right and trying to protect your child. Eccentric…well, what do we call eccentric in Britain, eccentrics are loved and appreciated. Is it eccentric to want the truth, is that eccentric? Have we become so jaded in our society that wanting truth and justice is eccentric? Maybe people that call him eccentric need to look at their value system. Julian is not normal, normal people don’t go and put themselves in the line of fire for other people. He’s an extraordinary human being and I don’t say that because I’m his Mother, I have admiration for him as a citizen and extraordinary human beings don’t have dinner exactly at six o’clock. (applause)
Harry Williams: In past conversations I’ve had with you in private you’ve indicated to me that Julian has been framed. That’s pretty strong terminology, on what basis do you say that?
Christine Assange: On the case facts, I hope they’re on your pamphlet there. I’ve actually taken a bit of trouble to do what the Journalists should be doing, which is researching the case facts, now I’ve gone onto web sites where other people have done a lot of work justice4assange.com, being one of them and umm. Also, as I was going to say earlier and then decided to go back to my question, are you aware that your Government is very well aware that Julian was being framed? This is my last resort being here, at first of all wrote to the Australian Government, I wrote to Kevin Rudd with case facts and I got a standard form letter. I sent that letter to every MP and every Senator and asked them to read it and that’s freely available on Brisbane WikiLeaks Defence; Christine Assange eight page letter, you can have a look for yourself and I asked them to look at this letter and put aside their Party politics and act upon their conscience and I actually got a bite from Andrew Manning MP in Queensland who was mortified at the facts that he was reading and what he’d researched further and suggested that the Australian Parliament really needed to be apprised all these facts. I was very hopeful, so we put together three lawyers, and ex DFAT, Department of Foreign Affairs Diplomat Tony Kevin, who had also been an ex Ambassador and they went to Parliament, they put submissions to Parliament. One of them was Greg Barnes head of Lawyers…Australian Lawyers Alliance and the Australian Parliament was told in no uncertain terms based on the case facts and the chronology, the time-line that Julian was being framed. He was a political prisoner and the case in Sweden was merely a holding case awaiting a US extradition and there was a lot of excitement in Parliament apparently about it and a lot of hope that something would be done and they told me that they would have regular cross bench interest…special interest group would meet. That was the end of it, I never heard a thing again. People who’d been speaking up in the Labor Party, one Sharon Grierson here in your local electorate who was speaking up, they were all gagged…and then began a series of Bills against WikiLeaks, one being the WikiLeaks Amendment. I’d like to tell you some of the facts about the Swedish extradition, so you can understand why I said he’s being framed. First of all the timing, Julian has never had a claim of sexual abuse about him and he is forty years old. Suddenly, he gets two right in the middle of Cablegate. That’s a little bit more coincidence than you would like. He…neither of the women actually accused him of rape, in fact woman SW and these are all facts, these are undisputed facts. Woman SW, was in fact so upset that the Police alleged rape that she did not sign the statement and ran out of the room from the interview. Her statement was later altered without her consent and without her signing it to get the European Arrest Warrant to make it look even worse. Woman AA submitted a condom 12 days later to the Police after she alleged that Julian deliberately tore the condom but when the condom was forensically examined there was no DNA evidence of either Julian or woman AA. Woman AA and the police officer that interrogated woman SW and both the Lawyers that represented them were all members of the same Political Party. They were all standing together for elections at the same time, four weeks after the sex allegations were made and one of the strong platforms of that Party is widening the definition of rape within consensual sex. Another fact, the business partner of one of the Lawyers representing the women Thomas Bodstrom, when he was Justice Minister he signed off on CIA rendition torture flights on Egyptian refugees, later Sweden had to make compensation because they were innocent. The other fact I point you to is that Julian…the rape allegation was dropped within 24 hours by the Chief Prosecutor Eva Finne and it was only raised again when woman AA who was running for election went to the lawyer running for election and found a Prosecutor Marianne Ny who a Swedish judge Brita Sonheim Berg, described as a radical feminist and the three of them put their heads together with the condom and raised the rape allegation again and you may not be aware that you can be in gaoled for rape in Sweden for non violent, consensual sex. The definition of rape is not like ours at all and the last point, there are many points but this is the last one I’ll leave you with in regard to that case, you can see many more on my Wlcentral.org/node/2486. The European Arrest Warrant was taken out for questioning and that is a misuse of the warrant, the warrants are only supposed to be taken out for a prosecution or to bring back someone who has absconded. So, it was taken out for questioning, Julian stayed five weeks in Sweden to try and secure an interview to clear his name and they refused every time. So, he was given permission to leave Sweden on the 15th of November, once he left Sweden, then they organised an interview and when he couldn’t come back with one day they issued the warrant started the process to issue the warrant. Through his lawyers in the UK he, they wrote to Sweden saying the normal protocol if someone is overseas and they’re only wanted for questioning not for prosecution is something called Mutual Legal Assistance, to which the Swedish, the Swedish and the British are both signed up. Marianne Ny the Chief Prosecutor refused point blank to use that protocol and lied to the media and the people of Sweden and said they were not signatories to it. The European Arrest Warrant was then backed up by a Red Notice by Interpol. The only time that Red Notice has ever been used in recent times for sexual allegations was for a repeat pedophile offender, so it was an abuse of the Red Notice as well. Julian has been under House Arrest for 15 months in Britain and he has offered himself for questioning to Scotland Yard and offered himself for questioning at the Swedish Embassy and the Swedish Prosecutor Marianne Ny has refused all offers, while still pursuing an European Arrest Warrant for questioning.
Harry Williams: Thank you very much…you have sort of answered the next question. I was going to ask you about what approaches you have made to the Australian Government, I think you have satisfactorily answered that. Now for the following question and I mean this is probably one of the biggest questions of the night, what steps can people take to help Julian, what can they do to help you, help the organisation and to try and help get him back safety?
Christine Assange: Well, you’ve all taken the first step by coming here tonight, thank you very much, I really do appreciate it. On behalf of Julian, I’d like to thank you. So, that’s the first step is to become informed because this is what as Kellie said on another panel, this is an information war. The only way we can fight the smear and the lies that have been put out about Julian and WikiLeaks is with facts. So you need to arm yourself with facts, there’ll be links there to the facts. Once you’ve got the facts, start to spread the truth. You can do that among your friends and co-workers and family. But you can also do thinks like ring up talk back radio when you hear this misinformation being put out you can correct it and whether you work around the water tank or the water cooler just start to drop some of these eye opening facts into the conversation. The one that I gave you before about them all running for the same Political Party that’s the one that really stuns most people to start with. Now, arh..what else can you do? You can write letters to the local editor, you can post comments when you see articles, you can buy WikiLeaks T-shirts and hoodies and wear them with pride. The more people that stand up loud and proud for WikiLeaks the more other people will stand up. Julian has often been quoted as saying ‘Courage is contagious’ and that’s true, it’s much easier to be courageous when there is more of us. The more people that stand up, the more people that stand up. Now we must not leave our Politicians out of this although they would very much like to be left out of it. Your Politician wants your vote more than anything else in the World, I think we can see now, aside from a few Politicians that they are there mainly to feather their own nests, there are what we called career Politicians they are not people there that have taken up the call of their Country, so that Politician really want your vote. So organise and interview with your Politician and don’t take no for an answer. Take a letter armed with the facts and it’s more than just Julian, we’re talking about free speech and democracy here as well and also by the way Independents for Australia in the US, we are not the 51st State of the US, we are Australia and we’re a Sovereign free Nation (rousing applause). We come from a Colony of the US, we’re not about to become a Colony of the US and we’re fast on the way to being there and people here that are migrants will know exactly what I’m talking about. You’ve come from other Countries to escape this sort of fascism that’s fast making inroads here through America by this Government (rousing applause). So I would say to you boldly confront your politician after all we pay their wages and it’s time they remembered that and tell them that actually my plasma tellie is not the most important thing at the next election, I’d actually like to leave my children freedom. The next election is going to be about Julian Assange and it’s going to be about press freedom and it’s going to be about democracy and it’s going to be about Australian independence and if it’s not for you, then you’re out. I won’t be voting for you and if there is not anyone else to vote for you might think about standing yourself. We can do with a few more Independents and break this…this choking party politics that we’ve got where they only hold hands for pay rises and to suppress free press (applause). Now, tomorrow we got the…well you people are giving today so we may not worry about that but tell everybody about the ‘Beat the Blockade’ campaign that’s on tomorrow donate $5.00 to WikiLeaks. The other thing you can do is to umm because they’ve got enormous expenses defending themselves against this onslaught from four Governments. By the way they are actually currently working with one hundred media partners throughout the World to bring the truth to you, they haven’t been broken yet, but they do need funds to keep going and to defend Julian and the other Journalists these attacks. What else, oh yes, at the risk of being labelled ‘a terrorist’ or ‘a belligerent’ you might like to start your own little WikiLeaks Support Group, that can be just one person and flyers aren’t that hard to make, follow me on AssangeC, I’m on Twitter, that was my big foray into the internet. I can’t use a computer but I can tweet in bed on my pink Barbie Doll ‘phone. Interestingly the $70 Barbie Doll ‘phone aren’t as easy frozen by security because they’re too low tech enough…isn’t that funny? (laughter) So I hang onto mine for grim death. Follow me on AssangeC because within that stream I’ll be tweeting a lot of stuff and also hash tags on Assange and WikiLeaks on Twitter because you’ll find out what’s going on and you can respond to it. There’s a great series at the moment by a bloke called SomersetBean and he’s taking my facts and he’s making posters out of them and he’s putting them up and you can download them and print them and put them up all over town, posters and flyers you can letterbox. Oh, here’s a thing for Newcastle, what about a Benefit Concert, you guys are great with music, I think a Newcastle Benefit Concert would rock and show the rest of Australia, you know, what you guys can do, because, you know, I think there is something quite special about Newcastle, it’s not just some poll political smear to grease you up. There is something special about this place, it’s um, I picked it up as soon as I arrived here there’s something really gutsy and Australian here and you’re really proud of that so you can show the rest of Australia how it’s done maybe. I think that’s about it, I haven’t forgotten anything have I. I’m sure you’ll come up with other stuff.
Transcribed by Gail Malone 2012
During the First World War, cartoonists throughout the English-speaking world responded to Allied allegations of German atrocities by depicting the German soldier as a monstrous ogre and labelling him a ‘Hun’ (Gullace, 2010 Gullace, N. F. (2010) Barbaric anti-modernism: representations of the ‘Hun’ in Britain, North America, Australia, and beyond, in P. James (Ed.), Picture This: World War I Posters and Visual Culture. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press., pp. 61–62). The ‘Hun’ became a prominent symbol of the enemy’s capacity for rapacious violence and was widely depicted in both government and non-government propaganda. While the simian German soldier was unique to the First World War, the racial tropes projected on to him were not. Indeed, he was an amalgam of pre-existing imagery that had been created during the 19th century as British imperialists applied scientific notions of race to colonised people throughout the globe (Robertson, 2010 Robertson, E. (2010) The Hybrid Heroes and Monstrous Hybrids of Norman and Lionel Lindsay: Art, Propaganda and Race in the British Empire and Australia from 1880–1918, MA Thesis, Australian National University.). The Australian transformation of the German from racially similar Aryan to monstrous ‘Other’ is an excellent example of how this process occurred, and clearly demonstrates that race played a central role in the Allied construction of the ‘Hun’. Through an examination of the war art of Australian artist Norman Lindsay (1879–1969), this article will establish the importance of race to the creation of the ‘Hun’ in three ways. First, Lindsay’s ‘Hun’ was closely modelled on anti-Asian and anti-African British imperial atrocity propaganda that long preceded the Great War. Thus, popular tropes from ‘atrocious’ rebellions such as the Indian Mutiny were recycled for use in 1914. Second, racial stereotyping reflected the particular culture that produced it—in this case, Lindsay’s work was the product of a uniquely Australian brand of racism that pilloried the Chinese and Japanese. Third, Lindsay’s racial stereotyping, although uniquely Australian, nonetheless drew upon deeply held British beliefs about the nature of imperialism, being that white civilisation waged a war against black barbarism: by ‘Asianising’ the German, Lindsay therefore removed his status as a white man, and enfolded him in a pre-existing and powerful imperial narrative about the ‘Just War’ against coloured savagery.
In the spirit of Amnesty Australia’s home page I’d like to help expose lies, demand justice and save lives in Eastern Ghouta. What better place to do this than on Amnesty Australia’s Facebook page, see their post below begging for urgent donations? This post is high on drama but lacking in detail, prominently pinned to the top of their page, linking back to their website.
Amnesty if flogging jihadist images and their narrative, it’s a tried and true method and worked to separate many kind people from their hard earned cash when, like the sky in Chicken Little, Aleppo was said to be falling. A Manichean narrative of good versus evil, good guys with white hats have been thrown into the mix making sure you know what side to be on. They arrive with cameras blazing, the media arm of al Qa’eda, the White Helmets, ready for their close ups.
At the time of writing 50% of East Ghouta has been liberated by the SAA and there have been terrorist surrenders. As with Aleppo local people become emboldened the closer they get to liberation. Photos started coming out of besieged Aleppo of the Syrian flag being raised in prominent areas. The people of East Ghouta have been doing the same, raising flags and protesting their support for their President and their Army.
The following post on Twitter was marked as spam on Amnesty’s Facebook page. Now I understand that FB algorithms can mark posts as such, but Administrators are immediately informed and they can manually change the post so it can been seen. Amnesty didn’t afford this post the legitimacy it deserved and censored their audiences’ feed so they couldn’t see how the civilians they claim to want to help feel. What these Syrians did was very dangerous for them, their determination to show the world the truth was brushed aside by Amnesty.
You can view the video here.
I also posted an interview with survivors of the Rashideen Massacre that was removed, this video remained on their thread for too long to have been an algorithm problem. It’s deletion was deliberate.
This is not the first time I have had pause to consider Amnesty’s perceived credibility. At the NATO Chicago summit they invited Madeleine Albright to be their Goodwill Ambassador. They also ran bus shelter adverts appealing to NATO “to keep the progress going” for human rights for women and girls of Afghanistan, years before they were instrumental in the lies propagated to manufacture consent to destroy Libya.
It appears Amnesty Australia is not at all concerned about exposing lies or justice for the people of East Ghouta or they would not feel the need for censorship. Silencing the people they claim to be serving is scurrilous behaviour. Amnesty is more concerned with donations than the truth.
Where has Western “Anti War” (mis)lead us to?
Britain’s Massive Charity Scam
- “The exploitation is so widespread that some Syrian women are refusing to go to distribution centres because people would assume they had offered their bodies for the aid they brought home”, the BBC explains quoting a new UN report on the humanitarian abuses.
- More than half the humanitarian donations from the United Kingdom to Syria through small NGOs have ended up in the hands of ISIS and other jihadist groups, according to the think-tank Quilliam Foundation. In this way, millions of pounds, thanks to the generosity of British taxpayers, have fallen in the hands of terror groups.
- Fatiha-Global, which should have brought help to Syrian refugees fleeing the war, instead diverted the funds to the Islamic State, the very terror group which had caused the refugee crisis to begin with. To top it off, the head of Fatiha-Global, Adeel Ali, was photographed with the jihadists of the Caliphate — the same jihadist group that beheaded British volunteer Alan Henning, who had come to Syria on behalf of the subsidiaries of Fatiha. Read more …
The West in general hears precious little of life in Damascus. Our State funded media, who most Australians trust, has become propaganda central, our ‘Aunty’ no more. For all intents and purposes a Murdoch run outlet devoid of fact, balance or nuance regarding the Syrian crisis. While the MSM focuses on the Islamist held areas, showing footage from the White Helmets with scant regard to their associations with known terrorists or acting skills. Our ‘Aunty’ airs terrorists’ footage and the people take them at their word. Meanwhile an ancient, world heritage listed city, crowded with civilians is under attack and it’s hardly seen as newsworthy.
“Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.” ~ Edmund Burke (1729-1797)
History is repeating in Syria. The west is fully cognisant of the terrible cost to the Iraqi people for the spiteful, cruel sanctions on their country. Madelaine Allbright freely admitted this on prime time television, ‘We think the price was worth it.’ However, the west didn’t pay the price, they never do. It was paid by over 500,000 children (and others) who died due to the impact of sanctions, half a million children alone, many from conditions as simple a diarrhoea due to the lack of paediatric syringes to hydrate them, as they were deemed ‘dual use’. The powers that be sit in their ivory towers and decree who will live and who will die, all while their vassal states nod in sanctimonious agreement, the UN holds back documents that contradict them and they remain outrageously, the countries that claim the responsibility to protect.
So who protected little Joud? Whose responsibility was it?
It certainly wasn’t the responsibility of the caring Stella Matt, who tried to raise the funds needed to give him the medical care necessary to his survival. Not an easy task when the usual crowd funding avenues will not touch anything to do with Syria. It certainly wasn’t the responsibility of the ordinary citizens of the world who donated their money in an effort to save his young life regardless of sanctions. However, we knew our governments would not help and do not feel a responsibility to protect children of the world suffering an unbearable life surrounded by incomprehensible violence with a chaser of sanctions. If they live through the violence, health problems from the simple to extremely complicated adds to the death toll of Syrians and children are the most vulnerable. When the village is unable to do their work raising the children, we need to be a global village, in a real sense, not just economically, and say we cannot abide this insanity any longer, we will lobby our government to put their money where their mouth is and uphold their credo of ‘responsibility to protect’ and remove the sanctions on Syria. We need to break sanctions as a matter of conscience when we can by making connections with people who can help to this end. We also need to pressure the UN to do their job and not cover up reports and allow the truth of Syria to be known!
“Over the past couple of weeks I have been working with a group of amazing individuals to help a 3.5 year old little Syrian boy named Joud Haider.
He has been diagnosed with Hydrocephalus, liquid in the brain, which has left him unresponsive and increasingly suffering damage to the brain.
Due to harsh sanctions on Syria he is unable to get the operation and treatment he requires there. Joud is one of thousands suffering unnecessary because of the sanctions we imposed.
We have arranged for him to be transported to a hospital in Malaysia to undergo neurosurgery and physical therapy to regain some active control of his life.
At the moment while travel arrangements are being made he has also contracted chicken pox and is being quarantined.
For a short time we believed Joud may survive.
This is the story of one small boy who we could not save, but there are so many others who could be helped, if not for the sanctions. I, as I’m sure may others do, vacillate between great sadness and white hot fury as we watch western countries do their best to destroy another sovereign states in the name of empire and sheer bastardy. We know the consequences, no parent should have to watch their baby die while the west congratulate themselves on their moral superiority.
More on the Sanctions on Syria:
“There is one difference between Sadaam Hussein’s Iraq and Syria today. International sanctions on Iraq had United Nations backing and were approved by all the major powers. The ones on Syria are unilateral. They derive from decisions taken by Britain and the rest of the European Union as well as the United States.
Not only were they not given international legal authorisation by any UN Security Council resolution, they were explicitly condemned by a UN General Assembly resolution of 20 December 2013, which states that “unilateral coercive economic measures adversely affect the economies and development efforts of developing countries in particular”.
“Such measures”, the resolution continues, “constitute a flagrant violation of the principles of international law as well as the basic principles of the multilateral trading system”.”
Excerpts from the UN report: Humanitarian Impact of Syria-Related Unilateral Restrictive Measures:
“European Doctor operating in Syria, “even though in theory it should be possible to procure medical equipment, the indirect effects of sanctions, especially the challenges it creates for Syrians to access banks accounts, makes the import of medical instruments and other medical supplies immensely difficult, nearly impossible. It also makes it far more expensive”.
European Doctor operating in Syria, “We often source medical equipment from neighbouring countries without always disclosing a Syria link. When we do say Syria is the destination country, the good ends up costing a lot more, and will often be subject to lengthy delays”.49
U.S./Syrian Doctor operating in Syria, “It becomes difficult to access medical up-grades, i.e., software updates, as these are not included on the U.S. list of allowed goods”.
The electricity sector has seen blackouts and a dramatic reduction in electricity generation due to damages arising from the conflict that have impacted power plants, transmission and distribution, plus a lack of maintenance.
European Company X has traditionally provided servicing and parts to a number of Syrian power plants; these plants are now over overdue for urgent maintenance and at imminent risk of break down. Currently power can be provided for a limited period within any given day, even in some areas of Damascus power supply is around 1-2 hours per day. According to available informa- tion only one of the power plants, the Deir Ali combined cycle power plant facility is generating power for:
More than 2 million civilians in different geographical areas ( i.e. Damascus, Swieda, Daraa and Konaytra );
For 300 pumping stations to supply portable water portable and irrigation water for 30,000 km2 of farmlands; and
Approximately 150 hospitals.
The licensing requirements under the export control regulations are more restrictive for Syria than Sudan.
There is a long list of items used for “basic human needs” that can be used to export goods without a licence from the U.S. government to otherwise embargoed countries, such as Cuba. These same items require a licence for export to Syria.
For Somalia, which is in a similar situation to Syria (in that a designated terrorist organisation controls certain territories), the U.S. government has issued a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) fact sheet, signaling an effective safe harbor against certain technical violations stemming from humanitarian aid delivery.
In the case of the Sudan sanctions, the U.S. government has set up a system for “vetting” Ngos to ensure their reliability; no such system exists with respect to the Syria sanctions programme. However, one could certainly be useful to assuage U.S. government concerns.”
RIP little Joud. My deep and sincere condolences to his family.
Links to information on Australia’s harsh and autonomous sanctions on Syria. Both sides of government hold hands on Syria Sanctions: