Trump persecuting Assange, pardoning war criminals?

This 25 May 2019 video says about itself:

Assange Is Indicted for Exposing War Crimes While Trump Considers Pardons for War Criminals

Web-only discussion with Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg and Jeremy Scahill of The Intercept. They discuss the Justice Department’s decision to indict WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on 17 charges of violating the Espionage Act for publishing U.S. military and diplomatic documents exposing U.S. war crimes.

This comes as President Trump is considering Memorial Day pardons for American military members accused or convicted of war crimes, including former Blackwater contractor Nicholas Slatten, who was twice found guilty of first-degree murder in the deadly 2007 Nisoor Square massacre in Baghdad which killed 14 unarmed Iraqi civilians. He was sentenced to life in prison last December.

Bernie Sanders against Vietnam, Iraq, Iran wars

This 24 May 2019 video from the USA says about itself:

Bernie Sanders is refusing to apologize for being anti-war. Cenk Uygur, John Iadarola, and Nando Vila, hosts of The Young Turks, break it down.

“Senator Bernie Sanders (Independent-Vermont) took aim at calls for him to “apologize” for his refusal to support U.S. armed conflicts in the Middle East, saying Friday that he was “right” about past U.S. wars and would continue to advocate against war with Iran.

In a tweet, Sanders wrote that he will “apologize to no one” for supporting peaceful diplomatic efforts over armed conflict with Iran, citing U.S. wars in Iraq and Vietnam as examples of past U.S. armed responses that resulted in long-running and exhausting wars.

“I was right about Vietnam. I was right about Iraq. I will do everything in my power to prevent a war with Iran. I apologize to no one”, the senator tweeted, along with a video explaining his stance against war with the country.”

Read more here.

Justice for the Chagos islanders

This 30 April 2019 video says about itself:

Where We Belong is a short documentary film on the Chagossian community who were forcibly driven out of their archipelago between 1965 and 1973 by the UK government.

The Chagos Islands, found in the Indian Ocean, is now used for a U.S military base.

Recently, the International Court of Justice have issued an advisory opinion and concluded that “the United Kingdom is under an obligation to bring to an end its administration of the Chagos Archipelago as rapidly as possible”.

“Where We Belong” is the story of the Chagossians women and men who are still fighting for their rights and can never forget their “Paradise Island”.

This short documentary film was written and produced by Tricia Sunassee, BA (Hons) Advertising, Public Relations and Media, Middlesex University Mauritius.

From daily News Line in Britain:

Free the Chagos Islands – Britain’s own Guantánamo Bay!

24th May 2019

ON WEDNESDAY the General Assembly of the United Nations delivered a stunning vote which overwhelmingly condemned the continuing occupation of the Chagos Islands.

By 116 votes to 6 the nations of the UN voted to support a motion demanding that Britain leaves the Chagos Island chain within a deadline of six months to complete this process of ‘decolonisation’. This vote upheld the earlier ruling by the International Court of Justice which found that the islands were under ‘illegal occupation’.

The six countries supporting continuing British occupation were [the United States of] America, Israel, Hungary, Australia and the Maldives; a further 56 countries abstained including France, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal, Poland and Romania while the rest of the EU nations voted against Britain.

The overwhelming vote was a massive blow to not just Britain but to the US which has been engaged in a massive campaign of diplomatic pressure on countries to vote against the motion put forward by Mauritius.

The reason for their frantic round of arm-twisting is the fact that the largest of the Chagos Islands, Diego Garcia, has long been the main base for US military forces and armed interventions in the region.

In 1965 Britain, under the Labour government of Harold Wilson, ‘purchased’ the Chagos Islands from Mauritius for £3million (re-naming the islands British Indian Ocean Territory – BIOT) with the threat that if they didn’t agree to the sale then Britain would deny Mauritius independence.

Having taken control through blackmail, the British commenced to ethnically cleanse every island of its indigenous population. Between 1967 and 1973 British troops brutally evicted the islands’ entire population to make way for a joint military base with the US.

Every Chagossian was shipped off to Mauritius, and to make sure they went their farms were burnt down, their animals slaughtered and they were sent packing with a warning that if they tried to return they would face the same fate.

Before Wednesday’s vote, Mauritian Prime Minister Pravid Kumar Jug-Nauth told the General Assembly the forcible eviction of Chagossians was akin to a crime against humanity.

Immediately after this crime against humanity Britain handed over Diego Garcia to US imperialism to build its biggest war base. While nominally under the control of the British it is a US controlled military base, home to dozens of US ships and nuclear armed bombers as well as being a main ‘intelligence and surveillance’ and torture site.

US planes have been sent from the base to bomb Afghanistan and Iraq. The facility was also reportedly used as a ‘black site’ by the CIA to interrogate terrorism suspects. In 2016, the lease for the base was extended until 2036.

The response of the British Foreign Office to this massive defeat at the UN was to insist that it stood shoulder to shoulder with the United States.

It stated: ‘As the US government has made clear, the status of BIOT as a UK territory is essential to the value of the joint facility and our shared interests – an arrangement that cannot be replicated.’

It is essential to US imperialism as a base from which to launch more wars against its enemies in the Middle East such as Iran while China is also in easy reach.

The British working class owe a huge debt to the Chagossian people for the crimes committed by the past Labour governments of Wilson, crimes that were perpetuated under Tony Blair whose government allowed all the torture and illegal rendition carried out by the CIA, denying that this existed until the evidence became overwhelming.

At last year’s TUC conference, Chagossians lobbied demanding the trade union movement support their right to return to their homeland – the support they received must now be translated into action.

Workers must demand that the TUC act by putting an end to this collapsed Tory government and bringing in a workers government that will return all the Islanders back to their homes, with massive compensation for their nearly 50 years of forced exile, and that will recognise their Independent Republic of the Chagos Islands. Only a workers government can undo the dirty work of the Wilson government!

No Trump-Iran war, Senator Sanders says

This 24 May 2019 video by United States senator and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders says about itself:

No War With Iran!

I was right about Vietnam. I was right about Iraq. I will do everything in my power to prevent a war with Iran, and I apologize to no one.

More German neo-colonial war in Mali

These 5 April 2019 videos are about a big demonstration in Mali against the massacre of residents of Ogossagou village by a paramilitary gang supported by the pro-French and German intervention government. The demonstrators blamed the French government for that bloodbath.

By Gregor Link in Germany:

German government steps up military intervention in Mali

23 May 2019

Against a backdrop of growing conflicts between the major world powers in Africa, the German grand coalition government (Christian Democratic Union CDU, Christian Social Union, CSU, and Social Democratic Party, SPD) is preparing a massive military intervention in Mali and the entire Sahel region of North Africa.

The intervention is taking place behind the backs of the population and is part of the German government’s Africa Strategy, aimed at advancing its economic and geo-strategic interests on the continent. By relying on military means German imperialism is returning to the colonial and militaristic traditions which caused immeasurable suffering on the African continent in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Two weeks ago, the German parliament (Bundestag) voted by an overwhelming majority to extend the German army (Bundeswehr) missions in Mali, EUTM and MINUSMA, and the involvement of the German navy in the EU mission Atalanta off the Somali coast for another year.

The government has allocated a total of almost 400 million euros for the three operations up until May 2020. In accordance with the two mandates, the Bundeswehr can station a total of up to 1,100 German soldiers in Mali. The West African country has been effectively under joint German and French occupation since 2013.

In contrast to the previous mandate, the German army now has the task of ensuring the “restoration of state authority” in central Mali. Formerly the German intervention was restricted to the north of the country.

The aim of the new mandate is “to ensure the increased presence of armed and security forces to create the conditions for a return of state administrative structures.” This explains the real purpose of the intervention: neo-colonial control and exploitation of the resource-rich country and the police-military repression of growing opposition to the imperialist occupiers and their hated puppet regime in Bamako.

The country’s government is currently experiencing fierce opposition from the working class and the impoverished rural population. At the end of April, the Malian government of Prime Minister Soumeylou Boubèye Maïga was forced to resign following mass protests and strikes.

The trigger for the protests was a massacre in the village of Ogossagou near Burkina Faso, involving the deaths of around 160 people, including women, the elderly and youth. Another 55 people were injured. The protests were directed against the Western occupiers, under whose eyes the massacre had taken place, and against the indifferent reaction of the Malian government. There are now indications that Malian government forces were involved in the massacre. A dozen uniformed persons are alleged to be among the attackers.

The German grand coalition is acquainted with the crimes committed by the Malian troops it has trained. Already last year, the UN Security Council issued a report listing 344 human rights violations involving 475 victims. Malian military and security forces were involved in 58 of these cases. In addition, Minusma has carried out investigations into 44 cases of extrajudicial executions by Malian soldiers. Instead of withdrawing its forces in light of this carnage the German government is expanding its murderous campaign across the entire Sahel region.

The entire parliamentary debate made clear the full extent of the war plans of the German ruling class. In his plea for deployment, the SPD deputy responsible for African affairs, Christoph Matschie, explicitly named the “stabilization” of the Malian government and the enforcement of the “state monopoly on power” as the objectives of the MINUSMA mission. Mali, according to Matschie, is “a state in the Sahel region that has enormous significance for the stability of the entire region.”

The speaker of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group, Andreas Nick, also pleaded in his speech for an expansion of the mission across the entire region. The country’s “problems” were by no means limited to Mali but concerned “the entire Sahelian zone.”

Nick continued by noting that during the course of [his] trip to Africa at the beginning of May, Chancellor Angela Merkel had again emphasised “the importance of the G-5 states of Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger for Germany and Europe, as well as the need for action locally.” Now it was important to “enable our partners in the Sahel to assume even more responsibility for providing for their own security. German and European support for the G-5 countries in financing, training and upgrading the “Force Conjointe du G5 Sahel” is an important step in that direction.”

In the course of implementing its war plans in close cooperation with France, the German government is increasingly coming into conflict with US imperialism. Nick expressed his “great” regret that “the granting of a robust UN mandate under Chapter VII for the ‘Force Conjointe’ had so far failed due to US opposition. The declaration of purely financial reasons and the focus on the purely bilateral work of the US in this region,” Nick concluded, “was not easy to understand.”

To put it more directly: following active participation by the German ruling elite in US regime change wars during the last two decades, it is now criticising US imperialism from the right. A “robust deployment under Chapter VII” requires a brutal combat mission and involving the same murderous and illegal practices used in the US-led wars against Libya, Afghanistan and Iraq.

The defence spokesman for the CDU/CSU, Henning Otte, made clear in his speech that the German government is considering the use of combat drones in Mali and the surrounding region: “We want the use of Heron TP (drone) equipment to continue. Training is already taking place and I say very clearly on behalf of the Union: When necessary we also want to be able to support our soldiers by arming them with the Heron.”

The “debate” over German combat missions in the Bundestag made clear the traditions the ruling class is drawing upon. Speaking on behalf of the far right AfD, Rüdiger Lucassen, a former official at the Ministry of Defense, demanded that the real nature of the operation be revealed to the public: “The entire motion is a document aimed at concealment, full of empty phrases at a time when soldiers need clarity. This is dishonest, cowardly, and deeply irresponsible given the fact that you expose our men and women to this danger.”

In fact, there is no lack of clarity regarding the aims or methods employed by the German government in the Sahel region. The plan is to use brutal force to enforce the interests of German imperialism throughout the region and, as an integral component, erect a kind of “death barrier” to block off “Fortress Europe”.

In addition to the direct deployment of German armed forces and the formation of African units such as the “Force Conjointe”, the German missions involves arming the authoritarian regimes of the Sahel.

Handelsblatt reported that Merkel promised the Burkina Faso government 17 to 20 million euros during her trip to Africa. The money is to be spent on “expanding the capacities of the police and gendarmerie” and “advice from the Bundeswehr” on how best to combat “illegal migration.” During her subsequent visit to neighbouring Niger, Merkel praised the country’s government, stating that it had “undertaken a decisive fight to deter illegal migration” and had “done outstanding work” in recent years.

The “outstanding work” cited by Merkel consists of African regimes with the support of the European Union forcing refugees into the desert where many perish horribly through starvation and thirst. According to reports, EU-trained units have not only secured borders but also occupied waterholes in the Sahara. As a result, the UN refugee agency UNHCR reports that more people are now dying in the desert than in the Mediterranean Sea.

In order to advance their inhuman policies, the ruling class is increasingly conducting covert, illegal military operations. German army special forces are stationed in Jordan, Tunisia, Cameroon and Niger, operating in secret and without any parliamentary mandate. Around 20 naval troops have been training local government soldiers in the Tahoua region of Nigeria for a year.

The results of the votes and the contributions by the opposition parties confirm that there is no opposition to the return of German militarism within the ranks of the ruling class. The Greens and the neo-liberal FDP agreed to all of the Bundeswehr operations by a large majority. The far-right AfD voted nearly unanimously for the EU mission, Atalanta.

This 2013 video is about the UK and France waging war ‘for democracy’ only in countries with gas, oil and gold.