Fernando Villavicencio, who with the Guardian’s Luke Harding and Dan Collyns fabricated the notorious Guardian front page lie that Paul Manafort and Julian Assange held pro-Trump meetings in the Ecuadorean Embassy, has been shot dead in Ecuador. The appalling lie, which the Guardian’s $700,000 a year editor has refused to retract or remove, despite criticism even from the Washington Post which named Villavicencio as the fabricator, was aimed to give support to Clinton’s flagging “Russiagate” invention, which was crumbling fast.
Veteran Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu-Akleh was covering an Israeli raid on Jenin Refugee Camp in her official capacity as a reporter for Al Jazeera on May 11, 2022, when an unnamed Israeli sniper fired a bullet into the thin space between the back of her helmet and her flak jacket, killing her. At the time, Abu-Akleh was fleeing Israeli gunfire directed towards her and other observing journalists, including Al Jazeera producer Ali Al-Samudi, who was wounded moments before Abu-Akleh’s death. One year later, Israeli military forces have issued an apology for killing Shireen Abu Akleh. This follows countless reports from journalist eyewitnesses, analyses by multiple international outlets, condemnation from world governments, and a joint investigation which determined Israeli forces deliberately targeted Abu Akleh.
Ukraine attacked the Kremlin with drones early this Wednesday, May 3, in an action that is being considered an assassination attempt against Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to Russian authorities, who described the attack as a planned terrorist action. The president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, arrived by surprise in Helsinki, the capital of Finland, for a summit of Nordic heads of government, together with the leaders of Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Iceland. He was received this Wednesday at the presidential palace in Helsinki by his Finnish counterpart, Sauli Niinistö, in the first visit of the Ukrainian head of state to the Nordic country that recently joined NATO.
Few people outside of Atlanta knew about the police training facility nicknamed “Cop City” when plans were approved in 2021, but all that changed in January when Manual Esteban Páez Terán, known as “Tortuguita,” was murdered by police. Their death launched a torrent of news coverage, including an article by NBC stating that police had never killed an environmental activist in the U.S. before Tortuguita. That may be true, but the U.S. has long been complicit in the death of activists abroad through its involvement in resource extraction and training police and military personnel. One such country is Honduras, which had the highest number of killings of land defenders per capita in the world in 2019.
For the first time since such killings have been tracked, more than 400 human rights defenders were murdered worldwide last year, with nearly half of these targeted killings occurring in Colombia, a report published Tuesday revealed. According to Front Line Defenders' annual global analysis, at least 401 human rights defenders (HRDs) in 26 countries were victims of targeted killings in 2022, up from 358 people murdered in 35 countries the previous year. The report notes that five countries—Colombia, Ukraine, Mexico, Brazil, and Honduras—accounted for over 80% of HRD murders in 2022, with Colombia alone accounting for 46% of the total with at least 186 killings documented and verified.
They were driving back from a community meeting in Aquila, Michoacan, where the discussion had centered on getting the Ternium mine in the area to cease activities. They dropped someone off, then were never seen again. Later, their car was found empty, riddled with bullets. Antonio Díaz, an Indigenous Nahua leader opposed to the mine, and Ricardo Lagunes, a human rights lawyer who has taken on numerous key cases in Mexico, went missing on January 15 of this year. “I miss my brother a lot,” Ana Lucia Lagunes, Ricardo’s sister, told TRNN. “But while this is directly affecting my family now, [such forced disappearances and murders] are affecting thousands of other people, too.
Feb. 21, 2023, marks the 58th anniversary of the assassination of Malcolm X. We honor his life and legacy by recalling his revolutionary message to the downtrodden peoples of the world and committing to carrying on his fight for liberation. In this special commemorative episode of Rattling the Bars, Mansa Musa speaks with freedom fighters Paulette Dauteuil and Ashanti Alston about how Malcolm X shaped their own politics, why the dream of international revolution was so essential to Malcolm’s vision, and how we can keep that dream alive today. Paulette Dauteuil is the former Co-chair (2010-2012) and National Secretary (2012-2014) of the National Jericho Movement.
Over 1,300 climate, justice and community groups are calling for Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens to resign over the police killing of anti-“Cop City” activist Manuel “Tortuguita” Terán on January 18, issuing a strong rebuke to Dickens for his refusal to even condemn the killing. In their letter, the groups said that Dickens has stood firmly on the side of law enforcement as Georgia Republican Gov. Brian Kemp has sent in the National Guard to crack down on protests in a continued escalation of the violence and threats of violence against protesters. “Mayor Dickens has stood by as police violence and rhetoric towards protestors has steadily ratcheted up, including the use of chemical agents and militarized raids on small groups of protestors engaged in civil disobedience,” the letter reads. “Less than a month ago, Atlanta City Council members and activists rang the alarm about the dangers of escalated police violence after an aggressive raid on peaceful protestors on December 13th.
On January 19, during one of its raids in the Occupied West Bank, the Israeli military arrested a Palestinian journalist, Abdul Muhsen Shalaldeh, near Al-Khalil (Hebron). This is just the latest of a staggering number of violations against Palestinian journalists and freedom of expression. A few days earlier, the head of the Palestinian Journalist Syndicate (PJS), Naser Abu Baker, shared some tragic numbers during a press conference in Ramallah. “Fifty-five reporters have been killed, either by Israeli fire or bombardment since 2000,” he said. Hundreds more were wounded, arrested or detained. Although shocking, much of this reality is censored in mainstream media. The murder by Israeli occupation soldiers of veteran Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh on May 11 was an exception, partly due to the global influence of her employer, Al Jazeera Network.
“You are done. There is only one way out for you. You better take it before your filthy, abnormal fraudulent self is bared to the nation.” That’s the shocking ending to the infamous letter Civil Rights hero Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. received in 1964 essentially urging him to commit suicide. The letter and accompanying package containing blackmail were sent by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as King quickly caught on. While the full, unredacted letter was finally published by the New York Times in 2014, the audio recordings of an extensive FBI wiretapping operation targeting King have been sealed until 2027. With just a few years left before they come to light, director Sam Pollard did a deep dive into the FBI’s surveillance of MLK under the leadership of J. Edgar Hoover in his documentary “MLK / FBI,” released by IFC Films earlier this month.
As Iranians and Iraqis commemorate the three-year anniversary of Washington’s illegal assassination of Iran’s Quds Force Commander General Qassem Soleimani and Iraq’s Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, scores of people have, over the last few days, rallied in the streets of both countries. On 3 January, people from all over the Islamic Republic, and particularly in Soleimani’s hometown of Qanat-e Malek in Kerman province, gathered to remember the fallen commander. At Tehran’s main prayer hall, a national congress to commemorate the assassination was held and attended by several senior officials. The following day, a scholarly congress under the title “The Global Hero of Resistance” will also be held and attended by a number of officials and figures from abroad.
On Tuesday, Mehr news agency reported that a senior Iranian judicial official said 94 U.S. nationals have been charged with involving in the 2020 assassination of top Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani. Kazem Gharibabadi, deputy chief of the Iranian judiciary and secretary general of the High Council for Human Rights, made the remarks in a televised interview on the third anniversary of Soleimani's assassination. He said the three main accused are former U.S. President Donald Trump, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former Commander of U.S. Central Command Kenneth Frank McKenzie, stressing that no one will be immune from prosecution in this case. Gharibabadi said the accused are not just the 94 Americans, and their accomplices from seven other countries, including certain regional states as well as Germany and Britain.
Al Jazeera has submitted a request for an investigation into the killing of Shireen Abu Akleh by the International Criminal Court. The Doha-based network said that its case presented to the tribunal follows “a full and detailed investigation.” Al Jazeera added that its submission presents new evidence showing that Abu Akleh, a longtime television correspondent for the network, was deliberately killed while reporting on an Israeli raid in the northern West Bank city of Jenin during May. After initially blaming Palestinians, and following unprecedented international scrutiny, Israel eventually admitted that one of its soldiers likely killed the iconic journalist but claimed that it was unintentional.
Pakistanis have been out on the streets protesting in the millions over the past few months. Even though the country has been afflicted by the horrific floods, the political momentum for radical change has not abated. An assassination attempt on former Prime Minister Imran Khan this November has brought matters to a tipping point. Today, Khan’s popularity as a political leader and public figure is at its peak – a fact even his detractors will concede. And this is precisely what has got him into trouble. Khan was ousted in a regime-change operation at the beginning of April. We can now conclusively say that the group responsible for the ouster included virtually the entire corrupt feudal-dynastic political class, the chief of army staff and some of his cohorts in the military high command, and of course the godfather overseeing it all: the United States.
Commanders of the Israeli Occupying Forces (IOF) have been authorized to use armed drones to kill Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, with the approval of Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kohavi. Hamas called the order “a dangerous step” and urged Palestinians “to continue resisting the Israeli occupation with all means possible until they regain their legitimate rights.” The authorization to expand the use of killer drones coincides with “a significant rise in shooting attacks and massive gunfire during arrest raids, specifically in the northern West Bank cities of Jenin and Nablus,” according to The Jerusalem Post. On September 28, the IOF killed four Palestinians and injured dozens more during protests in Jenin. Since as early as 2008, the Israeli Air Force has been killing Palestinians in Gaza with drones.