2019-06-02: News Headlines

Staff (2019-06-02). US History Is Defined by the Use of Torture. truthout.org Soon after 9/11, the US began holding people in secret prisons around the world in places called "black sites." Black sites were secret and what happened within them was unknown. When we did learn about the techniques our government was using to extract information, we were told it was not torture but something called "enhanced interrogation." It sounded new and not so brutal. But it was torture. An updated version of it, but torture nonetheless, which forced us to think about what we were willing to do to other human beings in a state of war. In this episode, Rebecca Gordon argues that enhanced interrogation…

APTP (2019-06-02). Anti Police-Terror Project Statement on AB 392, the California Act to Save Lives. indybay.org From our inception, the Anti Police-Terror Project has never subscribed to the belief that policing in America can be fixed. The system is not broken and thus cannot be made to right itself. Born of the slave trade, policing in America was then – and is now – about the catching, killing and incarcerating of Black and Indigenous bodies. We are an abolitionist organization committed to interrupting and rapidly responding to state violence, radically transforming the way in which we as a society define public safety and develop new practices to implement community security that are not rooted in race-based capitalis…

Mark T. Harris, SF Bay View (2019-06-02). Sacramento PD arrests 12-year-old Black child, places plastic bag over his head. indybay.org Sacramento residents are dismayed by word that a 12-year-old child, who stands 4-feet-10-inches tall and weighs fewer than 100 pounds, was inappropriately constrained by police officers and had a bag placed over his head.

Karleigh Chardonnay Merlot (2019-06-02). Connecticut activists speak against police violence with a silent march. liberationnews.org "How can I stop marching if the discrimination hasn't stopped?"

Dr. Leon Tressell (2019-06-01). UN Condemns the Psychological Torture Inflicted Upon Julian Assange. "Coordinated" by UK, US, Sweden and Ecuador. globalresearch.ca The UN Torture Expert, Nils Melzer, has strongly condemned the psychological torture inflicted upon WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange by a coalition of countries led by the United States and United Kingdom. | The WikiLeaks publisher has spent over 7 weeks …

Binoy Kampmark (2019-06-01). Findings of Torture: The UN Rapporteur and Julian Assange. dissidentvoice.org Another crude and sad chapter, yet more evidence of a system's vengeance against its challengers. Julian Assange, like they dying Roman emperor Vespasian, may be transforming into a god of sorts, but the suffering of his mortal physical is finding its mark. While some in the cynical, narcissistic press corps still find little to commend …

WSWS (2019-06-01). United Nations Special Rapporteur: Julian Assange is being tortured. wsws.org Yesterday's statement by Nils Melzer, UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, stands as an indictment of all those who have persecuted Assange and sought to poison public opinion against him.

WSWS (2019-06-01). France illegally arming Libyan coastguards to stop refugees from Africa. wsws.org The policy has been condemned by multiple human rights organizations because of the prevalence of torture, rape, slavery and murder in the camps.

Dr. Binoy Kampmark (2019-06-01). Findings of Torture: The UN Rapporteur and Julian Assange. globalresearch.ca Another crude and sad chapter, yet more evidence of a system's vengeance against its challengers. Julian Assange, like they dying Roman emperor Vespasian, may be transforming into a god of sorts, but the suffering of his mortal physical is …

Maha Hilal (2019-06-01). There's a Simple Explanation for Racial Disparities in Terrorism Prosecutions: Racism. commondreams.org A Black Lives Matter protest, November 2015. (Photo: Johnny Silvercloud, Flickr) | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files…

Staff (2019-06-01). 12 Victims Mourned in Shooting at Virginia Beach City Building. truthdig.com Eleven of the dead were veteran city employees. Utilities engineer DeWayne Craddock is identified as the assailant fatally shot by police.

Fréa Lockley (2019-06-01). A new film shows how police powers couldn't stop people dancing. thecanary.co A new independent film called Beats explores the power of friendship and rebellion. Set against the backdrop of the 1994 Criminal Justice Act (CJA), it also shows how new police powers couldn't stop people dancing. The Canary spoke to director and co-writer Brian Welsh about the inspiration for the film, and it's relevance in 2019. | "A succession of repetitive beats"<...

Pierre Tristam (2019-06-01). Trump Against the First Amendment. commondreams.org Julian Assange after being arrested by U.K. authorities in May. (Photo: Jack Taylor/Getty Images) | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files…

Staff (2019-06-01). Viking Ship Captain Arrested in Deadly Budapest Boat Crash. truthdig.com The river cruise ship collided with a much smaller sightseeing boat on the Danube River, leaving seven dead and 21 still missing.

Consortium News (2019-05-31). UN Torture Report: "Demonized" Assange Has Faced "Psychological Torture" theantimedia.com (CN) — The UN special rapporteur on torture has issued a stinging rebuke to the United States, Great Britain, Sweden and Ecuador for "deliberately" exposing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to years of "cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment," which can only be described as "psychological torture." "In 20 years of work with victims of war, violence and political …

amnesty (2019-05-31). Nigeria: Human rights agenda. amnesty.org The human rights situation in Nigeria is marked by serious human rights violations such as extrajudicial executions, arbitrary arrests and detentions, torture and other ill-treatment, enforced disappearances, violence against women and girls, restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly, mass forced evictions, environmental pollution and lack of accountability for human rights violations and abuses. Amnesty International is proposing the following human rights agenda and recommendations to the government to improve respect for the human rights of everyone in Nigeria.

MAIL (2019-05-31). U.N. Special Rapporteur Calls for Julian Assange to Be Freed, Citing "Psychological Torture" democracynow.org The United Nations special rapporteur on torture is warning that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is suffering from the effects of "psychological torture" due to his ongoing detention and threats of possible extradition to the United States. The U.N. expert, Nils Melzer, also warned that Assange would likely face a "politicized show trial" if he were to be extradited to the United States. Melzer writes, "In 20 years of work with victims of war, violence and political persecution, I have never seen a group of democratic states ganging up to deliberately isolate, demonize and abuse a single individual for such a lo…

Colin Benjamin (2019-05-31). Cleveland's Cuyahoga County Jail Guards Pepper-Spray Black Woman Strapped to Torture Chamber Restraint Chair. blackstarnews.com Chantelle Glass is being victimized above by guards inside Cuyahoga County Jail torture chamber… | A newly released video shows a Black Ohio woman being pepper-sprayed and assaulted by corrections officers inside Cleveland's Cuyahoga County Jail—while she was strapped to a restraint chair, in July 2018. | The Cuyahoga County Jail has been in the news recently because of the suspicious deaths of nine inmates over the past year. Two corrections officers have been arrested and charged in connection with one of those deaths–that of inmate Joseph Arquillo. Several others have also been arrested and charged wi…

Kevin Gosztola (2019-05-31). UN Special Rapporteur On Torture: 'The Collective Persecution Of Julian Assange Must End Here And Now'. shadowproof.com In a blistering statement against democratic countries collaborating to prosecute and enable the extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture condemned the "collective persecution" against him. "In 20 years of work with victims of war, violence, and political persecution, I have never seen a…

amnesty (2019-05-31). United Arab Emirates: INCOMMUNICADO DETAINEE AT RISK OF TORTURE: Ahmad Ali Mekkaoui. amnesty.org Lebanese detainee Ahmad Ali Mekkaoui has been held incommunicado since 11 April 2019. He is at heightened risk of torture and other ill-treatment. Ahmad Ali Mekkaoui is serving a 15-year prison sentence in the United Arab Emirates on "terrorism" charges. Legal proceedings against him have been seriously flawed, including arbitrary detention, excessive pre-trial detention, forced confessions, allegations of torture, and lack of access to medical care. In April 2019, the Prosecutor pressed new speech-related charges against Ahmad following a TV news report in which his sister and legal consultant were interviewed a…

Consortiumnews (2019-05-31). UN Torture Report: 'Demonized' Assange Has Faced 'Psychological Torture'. consortiumnews.com The UN special rapporteur on torture has blasted four nations for imposing psychological torture on Julian Assange. 'A Relentless and Unrestrained Campaign of Public Mobbing, Intimidation and Defamation' Warns of 'Criminalization of Journalism' By Joe Lauria Special to Consortium News… Read more →

Consortiumnews (2019-05-31). UN Says Assange Tortured: Watch the Webcast. consortiumnews.com Julian Assange was "psychologically tortured" by four nations ganging up on him, said the UN special rapporteur on torture. Watch the replay with Pentagon Papers whistle blower Dan Ellsberg, and other guests. The 32nd webcast vigil for Julian Assange was… Read more →

Caitlin Johnstone (2019-05-31). The UN Torture Report on Assange Is an Indictment of Our Entire Society. dissidentvoice.org On the eighth of April, shortly before London police forcibly carried WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange out of the Ecuadorian embassy, a doctor named Sondra S Crosby wrote a letter to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights requesting that the office look into Assange's case. Today, following a scorching rebuke of multiple …

Fight Back (2019-05-31). Call to Refound the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression. fightbacknews.org Fight Back News Service is circulating the following call to refound the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression. | We issue this Call in a sense of outrage in the face of increasing racist violence and political repression towards working class and Black and Brown communities. | We are currently facing a national epidemic of state-sponsored violence perpetrated by police and vigilantes targeting the oppressed Black, Latinx, immigrant, indigenous, LGBTQ, non-binary, gender non-conforming, and gender fluid communities. Black Trans women are also being harassed and killed at record rates. | We are…

susan_p (2019-05-31). US activists vow to protect Venezuelan embassy. greenleft.org.au At 9.30am on May 16, police officers illegally entered the Venezuelan embassy in the Georgetown neighbourhood of Washington DC and arrested four activists lawfully living in the building since April 10, as guests of the legitimate Venezuelan government of Nicolás Maduro. | The four activists arrested were Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese (with the group Popular Resistance), Adrienne Pine (an academic) and David Paul (a CODEPINK member). They are part of a group called the Embassy Protection Collective. | According to the Embassy Protection Collective's attorney Mara Verheyden Hilliard, the activists were charged…

Staff (2019-05-31). Facial Recognition Technology Ban for Police Is Important, but Not Enough. therealnews.com San Francisco, the 'Silicon Valley' city where facial recognition technology has been developed, is one of the first cities to recognize the risk to city residents of false recognition and over-reliance on technology…

RT (2019-05-31). 12 killed by 'disgruntled employee' in mass shooting at Virginia Beach municipal building. rt.com Twelve people have been killed and several more injured, including a police officer, when a disgruntled city employee opened fire in a municipal building in Virginia Beach. The suspect was killed in a shootout with police.

susan_p (2019-05-31). Peterloo: A defining moment in the struggle for democracy in Britain. greenleft.org.au Peterloo | Written & directed by Mike Leigh | Starring Rory Kinnear, Maxine Peake & Pearce Quigley | In cinemas now | *** | The international release of British director Mike Leigh's new film Peterloo marks 200 years since the infamous 1819 Peterloo Massacre in Manchester, England. On August 16 that year, a crowd estimated at up to 80,000 gathered in St Peter's Fields to demand parliamentary reform and an extension of voting rights. | On the orders of the government in London and reactionary local magistrates, armed troops and militias arrested the protest leaders and then charged into the crowd. They killed at l…

susan_p (2019-05-31). Turkey: Leyla Gàºven ends hunger strike. greenleft.org.au Peoples Democratic Party MP, Leyla Gàºven ended her 200-day hunger strike on May 26. Gàºven had been consuming only sugar and salt solutions and vitamins. | Gàºven, a member of the Turkish parliament, began her hunger strike in prison. She was arrested for criticising the Turkish invasion of Afrin, a predominantly Kurdish area of northern Syria. | Gàºven's hunger strike was a protest against the isolation of imprisoned PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) leader Abdullah àñcalan, who has been imprisoned since 1999 and has not been allowed visitors, including family members and lawyers, f…

amnesty (2019-05-31). Zimbabwe: Seven activists arrested, charged with treason. amnesty.org Seven activists, arrested on different dates, are facing charges of treason after they attended a training organised by the Center for Non-Violence Action and Strategies (CANVAS) in the Maldives. Five of the activists have already appeared in court and are remanded in custody until 6 June. The offence 'subverting a constitutional government' carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison. These arrests are part of an ongoing crackdown on human rights defenders, activists and opposition members in the country and are an attempt by the government to stifle peaceful protest over the recently implemented austerity mea…

amnesty (2019-05-30). Bahrain: Joint letter calling on the King to commute the death sentences of Ali al-Arab and Ahmed al-Malali. amnesty.org The organizations urge Bahrain's king, Shaikh Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, to commute the death sentences of Ali Al-Arab and Ahmed Al-Malali, who have exhausted all legal remedies available to them after the Court of Cassation rejected their appeal on 6 May 2019. The organizations oppose the death penalty in all cases, regardless of who is accused, the crime, their guilt or innocence, or the method of execution. The cases of Mr. Ali Al-Arab and Mr. Ahmed Al-Malali raise additional concerns, however, given the allegations that their confessions were obtained under torture and their right to a fair trial was violated.

RT (2019-05-30). 'I exposed corruption': Trump blasts Dems & 'fake media' for continuing Russiagate post-Mueller. rt.com In the wake of Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller's surprise press conference, US President Donald Trump has continued to gloat in apparent victory, as his opponents cling to the hope that impeachment proceedings will begin.

Human Rights Watch (2019-05-30). Indonesia: Set Independent Inquiry into Jakarta Riots. hrw.org | | Fire crackers explode near supporters of presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto during clashes with the police in Jakarta, Indonesia on Wednesday, May 22, 2019. | © 2019 AP Photo/Dita Alangkara | (Jakarta) — The Indonesian government should ensure a prompt, effective, and independent investigation into the Jakarta violence on May 21-23, 2019, in which more than 700 protesters were wounded and 8 killed, Human Rights Watch said. | "Indonesian authorities should…

amnesty (2019-05-30). Portrait of an activist: Cressida Kuala. amnesty.org | Cressida Kuala is a women's human rights defender of the Ipili Indigenous people, and an environmental activist from a gold mining town in the highlands of Porgera, Enga Province, in Papua New Guinea (PNG). She told Amnesty International that her interest in protecting human rights was motivated by her own experience of…

Human Rights Watch (2019-05-30). New Arrests in Crimea Seek to Silence Activists. hrw.org | | Lutfie Zudiyeva outside the courthouse in Simferopol on May 30, 2019. | © 2019 Krym.Realii | This afternoon in Crimea, Russian counterextremism police detained two women leaders of Crimea Solidarity, an independent group that speaks out for people arrested for opposing Russia's occupation of the Crimean peninsula. It's the latest of the authorities' many steps to try to silence the group. | The women are Lutfie Zudiyeva and Mumine Saliyeva, both Crimean Tatars, and their activism with Crimea Solidarity is to suppor…

Kevin Blowe (2019-05-30). Five ridiculous reasons why the police label campaigners as 'domestic extremists'. thecanary.co As the Network for Police Monitoring (Netpol) launches its campaign to end the labelling of campaigners as domestic extremists, The Canary is hosting this guest post from Netpol coordinator Kevin Blowe. | It's unclear exactly how many people have their personal details included on the police's secretive "domestic extremist database" — or to give it its full name, the National Special Branch Intelligence System. This database holds records identifying campaigners as either 'nominals' (with their…

Deirdre Griswold (2019-05-30). Why the imperialists hate Huawei. workers.org The Chinese company Huawei has been targeted by the Donald Trump administration. At Washington's request, Canada arrested Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of the company, last December. The charge? That the company did business with Iran, contrary to U.S. sanctions on that country. Meng, the daughter of Huawei founder . . . | Continue reading Why the imperialists hate Huawei at Workers.org

Martha Grevatt (2019-05-30). As Cleveland jail deaths continue, protesters demand justice. workers.org On May 10, Nicholas Colbert became the latest person to die in the Cuyahoga County Jail, the ninth in less than a year. The 36-year-old Army National Guard veteran was arrested for drug possession less than 48 hours prior to his death, which jail authorities have called a suicide. Colbert's . . . | Continue reading As Cleveland jail deaths continue, protesters demand justice at Workers.org

Human Rights Watch (2019-05-30). Zimbabwe: 7 Detained After Rights Meeting. hrw.org | | Farirai Gumbonzvanda at Chikurubi Maximum Prison on May 29, 2019. | | © Private | (Johannesburg) — Zimbabwe's authorities should immediately release seven activists and drop fabricated charges of seeking to subvert the government. | Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, the local group representing the activists, said that state security agents arrested all seven between May 20 and 27, 2019, at the Robert Mugabe International Airport in Harare, the capital, on…

Human Rights Watch (2019-05-29). Palestine: No Letup in Arbitrary Arrests, Torture. hrw.org | | Protesting the electricity crisis, in the Jabalia refugee camp, Gaza, on January 12, 2017. One demonstrator holds a sign that reads, in Arabic, "We want electricity." On that day, Hamas security forces detained scores who participated in the demonstrations in Jabalia. | © 2017 Mahmoud Abu Salama | (Ramallah) — Both the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Hamas authorities in Gaza are arbitrarily arresting peaceful critics and opponents, Human Rights Watch said today. From January 2018 throu…

Staff (2019-05-29). Tyrone West Would Have Been 50. therealnews.com The sister of Tyrone West, Tawanda Jones, has been protesting for 303 weeks since 2013 to get justice for her brother who was killed by University and city police in Baltimore…

Staff (2019-05-29). Baltimore Cop Charged with Perjury, Misconduct. therealnews.com Baltimore police officer Michael O'Sullivan was indicted Tuesday by a grand jury for falsely accusing a city resident of committing a crime. The charges allege the officer perjured himself when he testified that a Baltimore youth possessed a gun, despite body camera footage that allegedly contradicts his testimony. | O'Sullivan was indicted on one count of perjury and one count of misconduct in office. | The charges stem from testimony against a Baltimore resident, who O'Sullivan accused of possessing a handgun during a district court trial last year. The Baltimore resident spent several months in jail before pro…

amnesty (2019-05-29). I gave water to migrants crossing the Arizona desert. They charged me with a felony. amnesty.org After a dangerous journey across Mexico and a difficult crossing through the Arizona desert, someone told Jose and Kristian that they might find water and food at a place in Ajo called the Barn. The Barn is a gathering place for humanitarian volunteers like me, and there the two young men were able to eat, rest and get medical attention. As the two were preparing to leave, the Border Patrol arrested them. Agents also handcuffed and arrested me, for — in the agency's words — having provided the two migrants with "food, water, clean clothes and beds."

Andre Vltchek (2019-05-28). Andre Vltchek: It Is Indifference of the Israelis That Is Killing People. mintpressnews.com As always, I was impressed by Israel's infrastructure, but not by whom it serves. South Africa, during apartheid, built some of the greatest highways in the world. For the whites. Others were forced to live in the gutter. Israel does the same.

Tom Secker (2019-05-28). Contracts Reveal For First Time How DEA Exercises Control Over Television, Film Productions. shadowproof.com The contracts [ PDF] cover 2011 to 2017. Over that time period, DEA supported dozens of projects, including "Cops and Coyotes" and multiple episodes of "Drugs Inc." and "Gangsters: America's Most Evil." They support the fictional drugs drama "Pure," too. | Other supported projects were "Lethal Cargo," "The Notorious Mr. Bout," and "Declassified: Untold Stories of American Spies." They even worked with the U.S. government-funded Middle East Broadcasting Network for a program that featured the DEA museum. | Strangely abs…

Human Rights Watch (2019-05-28). Somali Torture Victim Wins Small but Important Step Toward Justice. hrw.org | | People walk down a street in Somalia's capital of Mogadishu on Jan. 29, 1991. | © 1991 AP Photo/Sayyid Azim | On May 21, a US court ruled in favor of a plaintiff who alleged that Yusuf Abdi Ali, a former commander of Somalia's Siad Barre government, tortured him in 1987. The court awarded the plaintiff…

MAIL (2019-05-27). Chomsky: Arrest of Assange Is "Scandalous" and Highlights Shocking Extraterritorial Reach of U.S. democracynow.org Attorneys for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange are vowing to fight his possible extradition to the United States following his arrest in London, when British police forcibly removed Assange from the Ecuadorean Embassy, where he had taken asylum for almost seven years. In April, Democracy Now!'s Amy Goodman spoke to Noam Chomsky about Assange's arrest, WikiLeaks and American power.

Nigel Lisbon (2019-05-26). Interview with Indianapolis organizer for alternatives to police. liberationnews.org "We truly need community accountability for our police."

Kevin Gosztola (2019-05-24). In Charging Assange With 17 Espionage Act Offenses, Prosecutors Claim Power To Decide Who Is And Is Not A Journalist. shadowproof.com To listen to the story, click the above player. In a superseding indictment, the Justice Department charged WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange with 17 charges of violating the Espionage Act. The Justice Department has relied upon the Espionage Act to target whistleblowers for unauthorized disclosures of information. It has treated journalists…

MAIL (2019-05-24). Jeremy Scahill: New Indictment of Assange Is Part of a Broader War on Journalism & Whistleblowers. democracynow.org The Espionage Act charges filed against Julian Assange mark just the latest attempt by the Trump administration to criminalize journalism and whistleblowers. Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning is back in jail for refusing to testify before a grand jury. Two weeks ago, drone whistleblower Daniel Hale was arrested in Tennessee. We air a new video by The Intercept titled "Why You Should Care About Trump's War on Whistleblowers," featuring Jeremy Scahill. We also speak to Scahill and Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg about how the corporate media has failed to stand up for Assange and others.