Roanoke County, VA — On Monday morning at 5 AM, two people locked themselves to a broken down vehicle on Honeysuckle Rd, blocking Mountain Valley Pipeline's access to the pipeline easement, a work yard, and 2 access roads. They held banners and signs reading, "OLDER THAN THE HILLS - WATER IS LIFE," "DEFEND THIS LAND," and "WATER IS PRECIOUS." Nearly 20 people gathered on site in support of these folks and to resist the Mountain Valley Pipeline. River, an 81-year-old lifelong environmentalist, and Andy, a 63-year-old grandfather and climate activist, prevented pipeline construction on Poor Mountain for 11 hours.
Yemen's Defense Minister, Major General Mohammed al-Atifi, stated on 25 January that the era of US naval hegemony is “obsolete," in a reference to the Yemeni armed force’s operations against Israeli-linked commercial ships and US and UK naval ships in West Asia. “The US, Britain, and Israel must realize that the policies of demarcation and assertion of hegemonic influence on international waters are obsolete and no more favorable,” Atifi said during a graduation ceremony of Yemeni cadets in the country’s western coastal city of Hudaydah.
Since the beginning of its genocidal war on Gaza, Israel’s supply lines have been jeopardized. After Israel closed all its borders to imports headed to Gaza and struck the Rafah crossing to put it out of order, Hamas attacked the ports of Ashkelon and Ashdod, which were used to import oil and supplies used in the war machine, after which Israel had to halt port operations and shift ships to Eilat. As the genocide in Gaza continued unabated, Yemen took part in the war by blockading Eilat’s port, which forced Israel to relocate its supply lines to the port of Haifa on the Mediterranean Sea. Last month, Iraq announced an additional blockade on Israel in the Mediterranean, expected to be enforced in February if the ongoing rounds of negotiations between Israel and Hamas to end the war fail.
This Wednesday, Venezuelan vice minister for anti-blockade policy, William Castillo, made a presentation to the visiting delegation from Burkina Faso. Castillo’s presentation covered the impact on Venezuela’s economy of the illegal coercive measures—euphemistically referred to as “sanctions”—imposed by the US and its vassals and spoke about how Venezuela has overcome them. In a statement, Castillo wrote that both parties agreed that “the sanctions are part of an illegal and criminal foreign policy and of a model of neocolonialism that uses attacks on the economy as a spearhead for the geopolitical control of free nations.” Burkina Faso also faces sanctions imposed by the European Union.
Yemen’s Armed Forces announced an attack on a US warship on 31 January in response to the several violent airstrikes launched against the country this month by Washington and the UK. “The naval force of the Yemeni Armed Forces … fired several naval missiles at the American destroyer USS Gravely in the Red Sea [ as a] response to the US-British aggression against our country,” Yemeni army spokesman Yahya al-Saree said in a statement on Wednesday morning. “All US and British warships in the Red and Arab seas participating in the aggression against our country are within the target range of our forces and will be targeted within the right of legitimate defense of our country … and in confirmation of the continued Yemeni position in support of Palestine,” Saree added.
The United States and the United Kingdom recently carried out their eighth round of strikes against targets in Yemen that they claim are being used by Yemen’s Ansar Allah – known in the West as the Houthis – to threaten maritime navigation in the Red Sea. Since Israel began its deadly incursion into Gaza on October 7 of last year, Ansar Allah has carried out a de facto campaign of targeted sanctions against Israeli economic interests, attacking ships traveling through the Red Sea that it says are tied to Israel. The operation stands out in the region, as neighboring Arab countries have largely stayed out of the fray, if not directly supported Israel’s bloody campaign.
Two press reports stood out to me this week: the release of the names of two US Navy SEALs who drowned two weeks ago in the Arabian Sea and the Air Force’s production authorization for the B21 Raider bomber. Both stories symbolize an imperial inertia that defines American national security policies, an inertia that is damaging our democracy and jeopardizing futures. The SEALs died taking part in a blockade mission against Yemen, a mission that dates back nearly a decade and is part of a two-decade-long history of US military action against Yemen (the US first launched a drone strike in Yemen in 2002).
Around 4,000 pro-Palestine protesters in Australia's Melbourne rallied on Saturday and Sunday for the 15th week in a row, calling for a ceasefire in Gaza and blocking a major freight terminal. The protest came amid an ongoing blockade of an Israeli ship at the city dock. The blockade at the Port of Melbourne has been ongoing for over two days, starting on Friday, and has prevented an Israeli-owned ship from being unloaded. It resulted in four cargo ships being stranded along with 30,000 containers. Mohammed Helmy, one of the protest organisers, told Middle East Eye that the protest and blockade has been effective so far and is intended to pressure the government to take action on the atrocities unfolding in Gaza as a result of Israeli aggression.
On Thursday, December 28, anti-imperialists in Greece protested the docking of the US Navy’s aircraft carrier USS Gerald Ford at the Souda Port in Chania. The mobilization, called by the Peace Committee and labor unions in Chania, saw participation from activists of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE), the Greek Committee for International Détente and Peace (EEDYE), the Communist Youth of Greece (KNE), and All Workers Militant Front (PAME), among others. Activists held a banner that read “There is no place here for murderers! US and NATO soldiers are not welcome!” The aircraft carrier docked at the port on December 26 and is scheduled to leave on December 30.
On Monday, December 18, oil giant BP announced that it would pause all oil shipments through the Red Sea due to Houthi’s blockade of all ships heading to Israel. BP is the first oil and gas company to do so. The Ansar Allah forces had announced its blockade on December 9. Yahya Sare’e, the spokesperson of Yemeni armed forces, announced that the blockade would continue until Israel ended its genocidal war on Gaza and lifted the blockade on the besieged Palestinian territory. As a result of the blockade, cargo ships have been forced to travel around the African continent rather than through the Red Sea, increasing shipping costs to Israel.On Monday, December 18, oil giant BP announced that it would pause all oil shipments through the Red Sea due to Houthi’s blockade of all ships heading to Israel. BP is the first oil and gas company to do so. The Ansar Allah forces had announced its blockade on December 9. Yahya Sare’e, the spokesperson of Yemeni armed forces, announced that the blockade would continue until Israel ended its genocidal war on Gaza and lifted the blockade on the besieged Palestinian territory. As a result of the blockade, cargo ships have been forced to travel around the African continent rather than through the Red Sea, increasing shipping costs to Israel.
The horrific 49-day Israeli attack on the civilian population of Gaza continues with over 15,000 Palestinians dead, including over 6,150 children and more than 36,000 wounded in the Gaza Strip. Virtually all of the 2.3 million residents of Gaza have been forced into the southern half of the tiny enclave. 226 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem. Israeli attacks have put 27 of 35 hospitals across Gaza out of operation, according to the World Health Organization. Bakeries, grain mills, agricultural land, water and sanitation facilities have been destroyed by Israeli attacks.
Hidden in plain sight along a particularly drab stretch of Route 94, just west of the Missouri River in St. Charles, MO, lies a large, plain white building. Almost completely nondescript apart from its size, it is distinguishable from the road only by a pair of small signs identifying it as Boeing Building 598. It is, at present, perhaps the deadliest building in the state. Amidst an ever-growing civilian death toll exacted by Israel’s relentless bombing campaign against Gaza, the displacement of the vast majority of the city’s 2 million residents, and numerous other human rights atrocities of various descriptions, the increasingly urgent calls for a ceasefire finally appear to have gained significant political momentum.
I deplore the killings done by Hamas on October 7 in which 1100 Israelis and 328 from other nations died. And I deplore the massive retaliation and revenge that the State of Israel is wrecking as collective punishment on the civilians in Gaza in the name of destroying Hamas. Over 8,000 Palestinians, including over 3000 children, have now been killed in the three weeks of massive air and artillery attacks on Gaza and over 20,000 have been injured with hundreds, if not thousands, missing under rubble. As documented in Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center located in Jerusalem, in November 1940, 380,000 Jews were sealed inside the Warsaw ghetto.
Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant announced a "complete siege" of the Gaza Strip on Monday, pledging to block food and fuel from entering the occupied enclave and cut off the territory's electricity—steps that international law experts and other observers decried as a clear war crime that will devastate civilians. "There will be no electricity, no food, no fuel, everything is closed," said Gallant. Using rhetoric that one commentator called "blatantly genocidal," Gallant added that "we are fighting human animals and we are acting accordingly." Israel has been imposing a land, air, and sea blockade on the Gaza Strip for nearly two decades, impoverishing much of the crowded enclave's population and denying millions sufficient access to clean water and other necessities.
Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant announced a “complete blockade” of Gaza on Monday October 9 and said that “there will be no electricity, no food, no fuel, everything is closed.” In his announcement Gallant stated: “We are fighting human animals and we are acting accordingly.” Gaza is one of the world’s most densely populated areas with a population of 2.3 million. The defense minister’s declarations come just one day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu formally declared war on Hamas. Meanwhile, Israeli warplanes have continued to carry out indiscriminate bombings across the Gaza strip, targeting schools, mosques, civilian buildings. Israeli media reported on Monday that at least 1,000 tons of explosives have been dropped on Gaza, targeting 500 locations, mostly civilian residential areas.