The forgotten angel of history

December 5th, 2023


IMAGE/Spartacus/Educational/Duck Duck Go

My great fear is that we are suffering from amnesia. I wrote to recover the memory of the human rainbow, which is in danger of being mutilated… We are much more than we are told. We are much more beautiful.’

Eduardo Galeano, 2013

‘A magisterial survey’ of the British Empire by Oxford ethics professor Nigel Biggar is lauded in the right-wing press. In Colonialism: A Moral Reckoning, Biggar seeks to defend the Empire from its most egregious accusations – greed, racism, land theft, genocide and economic exploitation. Cover blurbs from supporters hail the study as: ‘A timely riposte to the ethically flawed and unhistorical campaign by Black Lives Matter [which] conflate[s] benevolent empire with slavery and, worse still, Nazism’ and ‘Any objective reader not blinded by woke prejudice will recognise that this [is] one of the great debates of our times: whether we should be ashamed by our forefathers.’ 

The study has riven academia and ignited the ever-glowing embers of the so-called culture wars. Our history has become ever more politicised, with the biggest casualty of such debates the public’s understanding of it. 

The 2015 campaign Rhodes Must Fall, to remove the statue of Cecil Rhodes from Oxford High Street, which gained impetus again in 2020 following George Floyd’s murder and the Black Lives Matter protests, receives special attention from Biggar. Rhodes was a ‘moral mixture’, Biggar states, and not a racist, decrying the ‘shouty zealotry of small group of students’ and their academic supporters, and using selective facts to prop up his argument. The case of Rhodes Must Fall – that his policies of racial segregation led in later years to apartheid; that he promoted slavery in his diamond mines; that he stole African lands in nefarious ways – can all be explained within the context of time and place, explains Biggar. The anti-colonialists have distorted history for their own ends, he argues: their retrospective morality is essentially as flawed as a rough diamond’s surface, applying today’s ethics and morals to our ancestors’ deeds will of course cast them in a fractured light. 

The truth is that there were plenty of people in the past calling out the abhorrent nature of Empire – it’s just that their voices have long been erased. From London to Oxford, to Liverpool and Glasgow, men of Empire are consecrated in marble, brass and stone, while those that challenged imperial largesse have no such commemoration, they are forgotten by history’s ebb.

No sculpted busts, bronze statues, street names or libraries, for example, exist in the UK’s major cities to celebrate Samuel Jules Celestine Edwards, a black newspaper editor who lived 140 years ago, and enthralled Victorian England, packing out halls and theatres with his lectures on racial justice and Empire. Born one generation removed from slavery on the island of Dominica, Edwards was brave enough to denounce the British Empire when it was at the zenith of its powers. Pre-empting Rhodes Must Fall by more than a century, he was a fierce critic of the legacy of the slave trade and imperialism, challenging Cecil Rhodes and the British South African Company following its murderous campaign in Matabeleland (now Zimbabwe). Edwards even had the intellectual courage to repudiate Charles Darwin. 

At the height of his fame, Edwards was the editor of two anti-racist journals, Lux and Fraternity, a biographer and the author of a number of penny pamphlets. 

In 1893, he toured the UK with the great American journalist and activist Ida B. Wells to educate the British public about the horrors of lynching and segregation in post-abolition America. The newspapers of the day were extravagant in their praise of Edwards’s rhetorical alchemy, with the words ‘eloquent’, ‘assured’ and ‘witty’ peppering reviews.1 Those that saw the couple tour declaimed them to be ‘the greatest public speakers… ever heard’ but shockingly few are aware of Edwards’s tragic story. 


August 1884. The Balloon Society of Great Britain meeting at the Royal Aquarium.  Despite the name, this popular scientific, literary and art society did not just cater to fans of inflatables. The lecturer who was about to take the stage in one of the gallery halls that summer evening was palpably nervous. He was to face an audience of upper- to middle-class gentlemen. Among them baronets and colonels who had crossed the channel in silken balloons and wicker gondolas. Some were sitting in their military uniforms, veterans of the Crimean War, Opium Wars and Afghan campaigns, the gleam from their brass buttons and polished medals sending haphazard beams across the stage. Others were in the evening dress of the time, top hats and frock coats like the lecturer, their boutonnieres boasting a seasonal spray. Truly magnificent men in their flying machines. 

The Royal Aquarium was a grand, hubristic Victorian project styled on the Crystal Palace of 1851. It boasted a main atrium 400ft long and 160ft wide, covered with a barrel-shaped roof of glass and iron that gave the impression of an ever-changing sky. Palm trees, shrubs and fountains furnished the entire length of the tiled promenade floor, while exotic vines entwined the ivory balconies. To give a sense of scale, statues of Neptune and his sea-horse and a 12-foot Britannica overlooked the space, while thirteen glass aquariums for marine and freshwater sea creatures lined either side of the main hall. Charles Dickens was said to have described the ‘beggarly’ contents as ‘a standing joke’. An attempt seven years earlier to transport a whale from Labrador, Canada, to display in one of the tanks ended in tragedy for the chosen cetacean. To be in the presence of this rumoured magnificent orator, the audience that night would have traversed this majestic promenade to reach the lecture theatre, and the hall buzzed with audible but restrained anticipation. 

The speaker, Samuel Jules Celestine Edwards, was aware that the subjects he would broach that night would be controversial for his listeners. But he had faced much worse audiences. Two years earlier, as a 24-year-old Methodist missionary in south London, he had been assaulted with a hail of chewed tobacco by a rough music hall crowd. Seven years at sea as a child sailor and then as a young man, narrowly avoiding a series of life-and-death situations, had equipped him with a character of steel.

To polite applause, he challenged the notion that  ‘[The formerly enslaved] are lazy and would rather be slaves than free men’. Citing his own family as an example, particularly his grandfather who had toiled and bought the liberty of his own children, he stated: ‘I believe the Negro is capable of higher and nobler things than you give them credit for, and when trained for as many years as you have been will make a nobler race and a better people than the present generation.’

The White Review for more

Russia warns Niger as Africa rises in BRICS, G/20 with Dr. Gerald Horne & Margaret Kimberley

December 5th, 2023
VIDEO/Danny Haiphong/Youtube

Dr. Gerald Horne and Margaret Kimberley join the stream for an in-depth conversation on the latest events in Africa, from Niger’s revolt, BRICS expansion, the African Union joining the G20 plus much more!

Deadly diseases stalk millions in war-torn Sudan

December 5th, 2023


Displaced people arrive in South Sudan from Sudan through the Joda border crossing. IMAGE/UN News

Rawia Kamal, a health activist displaced after the paramilitary attacked her home, recounts the travails of being in war-torn Sudan with looming threat of diseases

As the war in Sudan, which has killed thousands, continues into its eighth month with no ceasefire in sight, cholera stalks millions in Africa’s third-largest country whose already fragile healthcare system has all but collapsed due to attacks and shortages. 

The most vulnerable to this deadly water-borne disease is the displaced population which is “surviving in overcrowded camps, schools, dormitories and mosques,” said Rawia Kamal, an activist of People’s Health Movement (PHM) and a medical lab technician by profession. 

With little or no drinking water supply in these shelters, people have to buy water carried for distribution in unsafe conditions on donkey carts. Those unable to access or afford it are forced to drink from irrigation wells or rivers, whose waters have been contaminated by defecation and washing in its streams in the absence of sufficient toilets and bathrooms for the displaced, she explained. 

Kamal is one of the six million people who have been displaced so far by this war which started when the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), formerly ruling partners in the military junta, began fighting each other on April 15. 

1.2 million of the displaced have fled to neighboring countries. The remaining 4.8 million remain displaced within the national borders, adding to the 3.7 million Internally Displaced People (IDPs) already uprooted from their homes in the previous conflicts before this war. This makes Sudan “the country with the largest number of displaced people,” according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

Amid what the UN Security Council also described on Thursday as “the world’s largest displacement crisis,” the WHO has reported at least 2,525 suspected cases of Cholera/Acute Watery Diarrhea (AWD) in five States as of November 9, with a fatality rate of over 3%. The OCHA warned last week that the disease is likely to spread to eight of Sudan’s 18 States by December, putting “more than 3.1 million people” at risk of infection.   

The outbreak of the disease was first reported in the state of El Gedaref, “where Cholera cases are not new,” Kamal said. “Only 10% of Gedaref’s population has access to sanitation facilities, while only 28 percent of the state population have access to safe drinking water,” according to the UN Children’s Fund’s (UNICEF’s) 2022 report on the situation in the state before the war.

Under the circumstances, “dengue, malaria, black fever, and other diseases have been endemic in its humid climate. Cholera cases are reported every year when the rainfall peaks between June and September,” Kamal said. However, the Health Ministry used to roll out an emergency plan during these months to contain its spread, which was mostly limited to the refugees living in settlements.

As of 2020, the refugee population consisted of about 26,400 Ethiopians and Somalians who had fled the conflicts in their countries into this border state of Sudan. It has nearly tripled since, with almost 51,000 more refugees from Ethiopia after the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) started a war with the national army in the northern part of the country in November of that year.  

With an additional influx of about 270,500 IDPs from the Khartoum state into Gedaref since the war broke out between SAF and the RSF on April 15, the health ministry has failed to contain the disease.     

Of the 2,525 suspected cases reported as of November 9, including 78 associated deaths, about half of them – 1,243 suspected cases and 36 deaths – are from Gedaref, where the outbreak was declared on September 26. 

It has since spread to all the four neighboring states and has also been reported beyond in a fifth state, South Kordofan, on the border with South Sudan, which split from Sudan in 2011 after 22 years long civil war. Nearly 900,000 IDPs, returnees, vulnerable residents and refugees were in need of humanitarian assistance in this state as of 2022, well before the current war broke out.  

Gederef’s western neighbor Gezira, which is hosting the highest number of IDPs of the current war — over 404,000, amounting to more than 8% of the 4.8 million — has reported over 500 suspected cases. More than 400 other suspected cases, including 24 associated deaths, have been reported from Khartoum state. 

While the WHO and UNICEF are providing States with high concentrations of IDPs with safe water tanks and mobile toilets, Khartoum remains inaccessible, in the throes of heavy fighting, Kamal said. It is from the three cities of this state — the national capital Khartoum, and its sister cities, Khartoum Bahri (North) and Omdurman — that more than 68% of this war’s IDPs, including Kamal, have fled. 

“I cannot survive in Sudan any more”

“I was living within walking distance from Khartoum’s Sports City where the first shots of the war were fired on the morning of April 15. Our neighborhood was under the control of the RSF from the first hours of the war,” Kamal recalled.

The notorious paramilitary was formed in 2013 by coalescing the militias created by the SAF during the civil war in the 2000s in the region of Darfur where alleged genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity were committed.  

People’s Dispatch for more

Impromptu words of the Holy Father — Pope Francis

December 4th, 2023


VIDEO/Rome Reports/Youtube
IMAGE/Washington Post/MSN

Thank you for this visit. And thank you for your work. There is a good address here with theological matters, but because of my health it is better not to read it. I will hand it out to you.

Thank you for what you do. Theology, theological reflection, is very important. But there is something about you that I do not like; pardon my sincerity. One, two, three, four women: poor women! They are alone! Ah, excuse me, five. We must advance in this. Women have a capacity for theological reflection that is different to that of us men. It will be because I have studied the theology of a woman a great deal. I was helped by a good German woman, Hanna-Barbara Gerl, on Guardini. She had studied that history and the theology of that woman was not so deep, but it is beautiful, it is creative. And now, in the upcoming meeting of the nine Cardinals, we will reflect on the feminine dimension of the Church.

The Church is woman. And if we do not know what a woman is, what the theology of a woman is, we will never understand what the Church is. One of the great sins we have had is to “masculinize” the Church. And this is not solved by the ministerial path; that is something else. It is resolved in the mystical way, the real way. Balthasar’s thought has brought me so much light: Petrine principle and Marian principle. This can be debated, but the two principles are there. The Marian is more important than the Petrine, because there is the bride Church, the woman Church, without being masculine.

And you will ask me: where does this discussion lead? Not only to tell you that you should have more women here – that is one thing – but to help reflect. The Church as woman, the Church as a bride. And this is a task that I ask of you, please. To make the Church less masculine.

And thank you for what you do. I am sorry, I have spoken to much and it hurt, but now sitting as we are, we can pray the Lord’s Prayer together, each in his own language, and then I will give the blessing.

Recitation of the Lord’s Prayer


And pray for me. Pray for, not against, because this work is not easy. Thank you.

Holy See Press Office Bulletin, 30 November 2023 


Why is refugee-friendly Pakistan evicting Afghans now?

December 4th, 2023


IMAGE/Associated Press/Duck Duck Go

In an internationally unprecedented move, Pakistan has imposed a steep $830 ‘exit permit fee’ per person on each refugee who fled the Taliban regime in Afghanistan since 2021 and is in Pakistan awaiting resettlement to another country.

Actor Angelina Jolie in a recent Instagram post earlier drew sharp attention to the plight of Afghan refugees in Pakistan after the government last month warned undocumented immigrants to leave the country or face deportation.

Pakistan has supported “many Afghan refugee families for decades,” noted Jolie, referring to the 4 million or so such refugees since the 1979 Soviet invasion. “I am saddened they would so abruptly push back refugees who face the impossible realities of trying to survive in today’s Afghanistan, where women have again been deprived of all rights and the possibility of education, many are being imprisoned, and there is a deep humanitarian crisis,” wrote Jolie.

Pakistan has alleged that Afghans were involved in half the ‘terrorist’ attacks in Pakistan over the past year, as caretaker Interior Minister for Pakistan, Sarfraz Bugti has said. He provided no evidence for this charge.

If some refugees are involved in ‘terrorist’ activities, “then by all means prosecute and fine them as per the law,” says former member of the Planning Commission of Pakistan, Dr. Saba Gul Khattak. ”Smearing an entire community for the actions of a few ‘unknown’ bad actors is unfair and amounts to collective punishment.”

The move also ostensibly aims to combat smuggling across the porous Durand line dividing Pakistan and Afghanistan. Pakistan Army Chief Gen. Asim Munir warned that military officers involved in cross-border smuggling would be court-martialed and imprisoned.

Pakistan, like other countries in the region, is not a party to the United Nations’ 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees.

However, rights activists underline the moral obligation to provide humane treatment to refugees, noting that Pakistan has signed international instruments with UNHCR, and ratified the UN Convention against Torture, and the Child Rights Convention.

No reprieve

Basically the move to oust Afghan refugees is an attempt to “consolidate and centralise resources and settle the Durand line”, as the Pakistani establishment has long wanted to do, asserts political scientist and author Dr. Ayesha Siddiqa.

It has also become an extortion exercise. “Many will pay to complete the documentation,” Dr. Siddiqa told Sapan News, criticising the hastily implemented policy with its “very poor” optics.

Plus, how will the government effectively manage the exit of such a large number of refugees, she asks. And will the Taliban government accept those who’ve lived in Pakistan for generations?

“Evicting Afghans is as difficult as the Palestinian issue,” adds Dr. Siddiqa. There are “no dividends and the implementation is even more difficult”.

Perhaps this is what led a Fox News anchor in the United States to indignantly claim that Pakistan is ejecting 1.7 million Palestinians. The outraged American anchor appears ignorant about the region and its demographics, which don’t include Palestinians.

Of the four million Afghan refugees Pakistan has hosted since 1979, the government estimates 1.4 million have Proof of Registration (POR) cards, 850,000 have Afghan Citizenship Cards (ACC).

The crackdown was initially aimed at the 1.73 million refugees who lack legal documentation. However, despite earlier official assurances that legal residents would not be deported, even those with proper documentation are facing forced repatriation.

When the Taliban took over Afghanistan in August 2021, then Pakistani prime minister, Imran Khan, hailed Afghanistan’s liberation from “shackles of slavery.” His ISI chief Faiz Hameed famously sipped tea in Kabul’s Serena Hotel foyer, downplaying worries with “everything will be ok.” Later, defence Minister Khawaja Asif of the Shehbaz Sharif-led government branded the Taliban as “freedom fighters,” lauding their victory over US-led NATO’s might.

These developments triggered another exodus. Over 600,000 Afghans fled to Pakistan hoping to transition to other countries that promised asylum. Two years on, many are still in the capital Islamabad, awaiting visa confirmations or refugee status.

They include students, doctors, musicians, activists, journalists, teachers, and ex-government servants.

Rights activists view the crackdown on Afghan refugees as inhumane and a move that will, in the long run, harm Pakistan and its relationship with its neighbour, Afghanistan. They also view it as playing politics with the lives of Afghan refugees who have lived in Pakistan for generations, many of whom have known only this country as a home, as former senator Afrasiab Khattak has noted.

INSAF for more

The shift: Actors face consequences for Palestine support

December 4th, 2023


Actress Susan Sarandon IMAGE/Wikimedia

Hollywood. It’s associated with a variety of causes, but you’d be hard-pressed to find many that are overtly political. For instance, Republicans believe award shows are a cascade of left-wing propaganda, but who can forget Michael Moore getting booed for having the temerity to tell the truth about Iraq?

Palestine is quite obviously a third rail issue for celebs. There has been an increasing amount of entertainers showing support in recent years, but that numbers remains extremely small in the scheme of things. This week we are learning why.

First, Susan Sarandon was dropped from United Talent Agency for comments she made at a Palestine rally. The incriminating remark seems to be, “There are a lot of people that are afraid, that are afraid of being Jewish at this time, and are getting a taste of how it feels to be Muslim in this country.”

Then actress Melissa Barrera was dropped from the upcoming Scream 7 over a social media post she made about the issue.

Here’s the statement that Spyglass Media, the production company behind the movie, made on Tuesday: “Spyglass’ stance is unequivocally clear: We have zero tolerance for antisemitism or the incitement of hate in any form, including false references to genocide, ethnic cleansing, Holocaust distortion or anything that flagrantly crosses the line into hate speech.”

Barrera’s firing and the subsequent statement suggests she spread antisemitic disinformation, but the post in question doesn’t even mention Jewish people and certainly doesn’t distort The Holocaust.

“I have been actively looking for videos and information about the Palestinian side for the last 2 weeks or so, following accounts etc. Why? Because western media only shows the other side. Why they do that, I will let you deduce for yourself,” it read.

“Usually, the algorithm on social media gets the gist,” it continued. “Well…My discover page on IG will ONLY show me videos showing and talking about the Israeli side. Censorship is very real. Palestinians know this, they know the world has been trying to make them invisible for decades. Keep sharing.”

The censorship of Palestine voices is a well-established fact, not some grand conspiracy. The only antisemitic part of this story is Spyglass’ explanation for why they let their film’s lead actor go, as they’re associating Israel with all Jewish people.

Barrera told the press that she’s not the only one leaving the set and there’s reports that Jenna Ortega (who is also slated to appear in the movie) has asked to have her contract terminated over the decision. However, the only public statement we have so far beyond Barrera’s comes from director Christopher Landon and it’s strikingly pathetic: “?Everything sucks. Stop yelling. This was not my decision to make.”


Finally, we turn to the the case of Maha Dakhil, 48, who is a popular agent at Creative Artists Agency (CAA). She faced intense criticism over a social media post last month.“What’s more heartbreaking than witnessing genocide?,” she had written. “Witnessing the denial that genocide is happening.”

The backlash to this commonsense observation forced Dakhil to delete the post, make her account private, apologize, and resign from her leadership position with the organization. Now a new report reveals that Tom Cruise (who is one of her clients) stepped into to help protect her job and assist her in navigating the criticism. This from a Variety article by Tatiana Siegel on the situation:

“It didn’t hurt that her most important client, Tom Cruise, made it known to CAA that he was backing her. Cruise met with Dakhil at her CAA office on Nov. 15. A knowledgeable source says he took the rare step of going in person to show support for his embattled agent.”

“But the Dakhil issue didn’t end there. A group of CAA assistants threatened to walk out over the agency’s treatment of her, sources say. They believed she was being railroaded by management but ultimately abandoned their threat. At the same time, some of the agents who complained internally about Dakhil’s posts felt disillusioned, believing she should have been fired. Separately, CAA cut ties with a staffer and two clients over incendiary anti-Israeli social media posts.”

Mondoweiss for more

Weekend Edition

December 1st, 2023

Unpunished war criminal Henry Kissinger is dead

December 1st, 2023


Two war criminals — former US secretary of US and national security advisor Henry Kissinger (in glasses) who died on November 29, 2023, with Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Kissinger was never tried for his war crimes and the US will protect Netanyahu from getting prosecuted for his recent war crimes against Palestinians in Gaza. IMAGE/Facebook/Duck Duck Go
Kisssinger with another war criminal, Chile’s Augusto Pinochet IMAGE/Telesur
Kissinger with another war criminal, Pakistan’s Yahya Khan IMAGE/Pakpedia
(From left) Kissinger, right next to him is U President Gerald Ford, and in dark suit is war criminal, Indonesia’s Suharto on December 6, 1975 IMAGE/972 Mag/Duck Duck Go
Kissinger with another war criminal, Argentina’s General Jorge Rafael Videla IMAGE/KontraInfo/Duck Duck Go
When war criminal Kissinger was not meeting another war criminal, he would simply pick his nose IMAGE/Counterpunch Investigative journalist Ken Silverstein wrote: “Kissinger was OK having his picture taken with murderers like Pinochet but upset when outed as a snot eater. A fucking monster.” In Silverstein and Alexander Cockburn’s book, Washington Babylon, the caption read: “Henry the K.: a nose in every pie, a finger in every nose.” TEXT/Counterpunch

since its inception, the US has always concocted reasons for wars & violence

the Native Americans whose land they stole were savages

Russians, Chinese, Koreans and many others were dangerous communists

Muslims who fought back were labelled terrorists

even though the US itself houses some of the real great terrorists

they have committed and are committing terror acts on a humongous scale

5 million civilians & soldiers were killed in the Korean War (1950 – 1953)

US war against Vietnam killed 3.8 million Vietnamese

2 million of those killed were civilians

one of the terrorists was Henry Kissinger (1923 – 2023), who is now dead

historian Greg Grandin told Rolling Stone:

“The Cubans say there is no evil that lasts a hundred years, and Kissinger is making a run to prove them wrong.”

finally, the world has one less war criminal


US conducted nuclear tests on Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands in 1954

Micronesians living there were displaced

Henry Kissinger’s heartless comment on displaced people:

There are only 90,000 of them out there. Who gives a damn?


Kissinger was United States secretary of state & national security advisor

he had a great appetite for killing people and destroying countries

Operation Menu” had breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, dessert, & supper

it’s not clear what did Kissinger preferred for various meals

limbs, eyes, hearts, liver, thighs, breasts, hips, … or a combo or whole bodies

or how he liked: rare, medium-rare, medium, medium-well, well done

Nixon’s Chief of Staff H. R. Haldeman diary entry of March 17, 1969 reads:

“Historic day. Kissinger’s ‘Operation Breakfast’ finally came off at 2:00 p.m. our time. Kissinger really excited, as was President [Richard Nixon]. Early reports only that it was underway.”

Haldeman noted in his diary on March 18, 1969

“Kissinger’s ‘Operation Breakfast’ a great success. He came beaming in with report, very productive.”

it wasn’t “productive,” it was destructive — B-52s had begun carpet-bombing

Kissinger’s order:

Anything that flies on everything that moves.”

Cambodians saw 540,000 tons of bombs dropped over them for 4 years

the bombs dropped on rural Cambodia equaled 5 Hiroshimas

between 150,000 to 500,000 civilians got killed in those insane bombings

Anthony Bourdain, chef/writer/TV host, expressed his loathing thus:

“Once you’ve been to Cambodia, you’ll never stop wanting to beat Henry Kissinger to death with your bare hands.” “You will never again be able to open a newspaper and read about that treacherous, prevaricating, murderous scumbag sitting down for a nice chat with Charlie Rose or attending some black-tie affair for a new glossy magazine without choking… While Henry continues to nibble nori rolls and remaki at A-list parties, Cambodia, the neutral nation he secretly and illegally bombed, invaded, undermined, and then threw to the dogs, is still trying to raise itself up on its one remaining leg.”

over 40,000 people lost limbs in Cambodia, most amputees per capita

Vietnam & Laos are also victims cluster munitions & unexploded landmines

the end of US savagery four years later, brought Khmer Rouge to power

John Pilger reminds us of ISIS — which rose out of US war against Iraq

similarly, the US war against Afghanistan saw the emergence of Taliban

Cambodia got engulfed in a civil war costing 600,000 more lives

in 1969, a US observation plane was shot down off the coast of Korea

Kissinger’s idea:

“… we might have to go to tactical nuclears and clean it up. All hell will break loose for two month, but at end of road there will be peace in Asia.”


On Nov 3, 1970, Chileans elected Dr. Salvador Allende as their president

the US govt didn’t like that — Henry Kissinger warned:

“The example of a successful elected Marxist government in Chile would surely have an impact on—and even precedent value for—other parts of the world, especially in Italy; the imitative spread of similar phenomena elsewhere would in turn significantly affect the world balance and our own position in it.”

what does Kissinger mean by “our position?

US capitalistic and military control of the world — the US hegemony

the US planned Allende’s ouster as Kissinger said:

“It is firm and continuing policy that [Chile President Salvador] Allende be overthrown by a coup.”

(sender was Thomas Karamessines, CIA deputy director of plans

receiver was Henry Hecksher, CIA station chief in Santiago)

the CIA funded widespread strikes took place all over Chile

the US, had decided, and so it was, Allende was removed in a bloody coup

the date Allende was overthrown was 9/11/1973 — Chilean people’s 9/11

military leader Augusto Pinochet was as cruel as any wicked dictator

over 3,000 people were murdered or disappeared

38,000 people were put in prison, many of them were tortured

East Pakistan

West Pakistan’s Punjabi elite considered East Pakistani Bengalis inferior

West based army refused to hand over power to East based election winner

army went berserk

a million people got killed, hundreds of thousands of women were raped

Henry Kissinger on letting Pakistani army butcher East Pakistani Bengalis

We can’t allow a friend of ours and China’s [Pakistan] to get screwed in a conflict with a friend of India’s [the Soviet Union].”

East Timor

on Dec 6, 1975, Kissinger & President Gerald Ford left Indonesia after a visit

next day, Indonesian President Suharto ordered invasion of East Timor

Suharto had blood of at least 500,000 communists in a purge of 1965 – 1966

now he went after East Timorese blood

Kissinger told his staff:

“I’m assuming you’re really going to keep your mouth shut on this subject?”

on its website, human rights organization ETAN had this to say on Kissinger

Under Kissinger’s direction, the U.S. gave a greenlight to the 1975 Indonesian invasion of East Timor (now Timor-Leste) which ushered in a 24-year brutal occupation by the Suharto dictatorship. The Indonesian occupation of East Timor and West Papua was enabled by U.S. weapons and training. This illegal flow of weapons contravened congressional intent, yet Kissinger bragged about his ability to continue arms shipments to Suharto (“The illegal we do immediately, the unconstitutional takes a bit longer.”) These weapons were essential to the Indonesian dictator’s consolidation of military control in both East Timor and West Papua, and these occupations cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of Timorese and Papuan civilians. Kissinger’s policy toward West Papua allowed for the U.S.-based multinational corporation Freeport McMoRan to pursue its mining interests in the region, which has resulted in terrible human rights and environmental abuses; Kissinger was rewarded with a seat on the Board of Directors from 1995-2001.


Mar 1976: Argentina’s President Isabel Peron was ousted by General Videla

Kissinger provided help to the military junta of General Jorge Rafael Videla

many were drugged, put on planes, & thrown into the Atlantic Ocean

between 1976 to 1983, 22,000 people were killed or disappeared

War Criminal Kissinger

Kissinger was fortunate — his position & power satisfied all his urges

lust for blood, greed for money, fame in news, hobnobbing with celebrities

at a dinner party, ABC TV’s Peter Jennings once asked Kissinger

How does it feel to be a war criminal, Henry?

Henry Kissinger was dead quiet

but unlike his dead victims, he got revived when he moved to other guests

(party was hosted by ABC TV’s Barbara Walters, Kissinger’s friend)

during Kissinger’s 8 years in power, many horrific things happened

regimes supported by him killed millions of people

they also committed millions of human rights violations

B. R. Gowani can be reached at

Africa’s next great war

December 1st, 2023


Rwanda’s Paul Kagame (left) and Felix Tshisekedi of Democratic Republic of the Congo

The international community’s limited attention span is laser-focused on jihadism in the Sahel and the imploding Horn of Africa. But interstate war is potentially brewing in the eastern DRC.

It’s happening again. A Rwandan-backed rebel force threatens the Congolese provincial capital of Goma while foreign intervention is cobbled together to bail out the struggling Congolese army. Unlike the last two or three times this happened, the conflict faces the prospect of horrific escalation into interstate war. Rwandan and Kenyan troops are racing headfirst into a confrontation. As Kenya airlifts troops into the east under the flag of the East Africa Community (EAC), the Rwandan soldiers embedded within the M23 rebellion show no signs of backing down. These two African states, each claiming to have the most professional force in the region, will soon trade blows.

Nearly thirty years of complex, multilayered, and tragic war in the Great Lakes have led to this latest escalation. The eastern DRC never recovered from the deadly inferno that was “Africa’s great war,” a bitter conflict that drew in nine countries and killed as many as five million. While peace was declared in 2003, the embers of war continued to burn in the eastern DRC, where the war had injected violence into local politics. Local violence continues to blend with national- and regional-level politics. Rwanda, which has complex and often competitive relationships with Uganda and Burundi, has a history of repeatedly creating and supporting rebellions in Congo. While this current M23 rebellion has many Congolese members with genuine grievances, the force is historically constructed and supported by the Rwandan state. While it is unclear what exactly motivated this offensive, some point to Rwandan concerns over the growing influence of rival Uganda in the DRC. The relationship between Uganda and Rwanda is not straightforward, and there are reports that Ugandan elements have supported M23. The regional tensions at play here are unclear, as the Ugandan and Congolese states are not unitary actors. According to leaked UN reports, Rwanda is directly assisting this latest iteration of M23 with infantry, artillery, and logistics. It has easily beat back the Congolese regulars and their militia allies and downed UN and Congolese military aircraft.

In response to the escalation, the regional EAC has announced the deployment of a military force at the invitation of the DRC, its newest member. Kenya seems to have been the power player behind this intervention and has begun deploying its forces into the fight. The international community has slowly lost interest in the region, writing off the turbulence in the Great Lakes as an endemic low-intensity conflict, ignoring the possibility of an explosion. Some in Kenya, the regional economic powerhouse, dream of an East African unified market where a pacified region ensures that Kenyan goods are supplied to Congolese consumers. Rwanda believes that it can only be secure if it has influence in Eastern Congo, where various rebel forces opposing the Rwandan regime have sheltered. When that influence wanes, Rwanda backs a rebellion to ensure that its influence continues.

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Slumdog billionaires: Digital artist uses AI to reimagine world’s richest in slum-like environment

December 1st, 2023


Utilizing AI programme called Midjourney, Gokul Pillai created images of former US president Donald Trump and six billionaires — Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet (from US) and Mukesh Ambani (from India) as residents of slums in India IMAGES/MSN/Duck Duck Go

A digital artist has created waves on social media by using an artificial intelligence (AI) tool to portray how the world’s wealthiest people would look like if they were poor.

Using an AI programme called Midjourney, India-based Gokul Pillai created a series of portraits of these billionaires, transforming their privileged lives into slum dwellers.

These business magnates are former US president Donald Trump, Microsoft boss Bill Gates, Indian business magnate Mukesh Ambani, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, American investor Warren Buffett, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, and South African-born American entrepreneur Elon Musk.

Pillai posted the images on his Instagram account, with the caption: “Slumdog Millionaires. (Did I miss to include anyone in the list?)‘‘.

His post went viral, chalking up nearly 10,000 likes and hundreds of responses from people.

“Just amazing they look real… more like slumdog billionaire,” commented user abhishekdhyani.

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