Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα war. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων
Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα war. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων

Τρίτη, Σεπτεμβρίου 09, 2014

Peace means dignity, well-being for all, not just absence of war – (UN officials)

UN, 9 September 2014 – Underscoring that peace is more than just the absence of war, United Nations officials today stressed the need for concerted efforts to achieve the common vision of a life of dignity and well-being for all. 

“We know that peace cannot be decreed solely through treaties – it must be nurtured through the dignity, rights and capacities of every man and woman,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in his remarks to the High-level Forum on the Culture of Peace, convened by the General Assembly. “It is a way of being, of interacting with others, of living on this planet.”

In September 1999, the Assembly adopted, by consensus, a resolution on the Declaration and Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace. Since then, it has met annually to discuss the issue, as well as how to advance this noble goal.
Mr. Ban said that peace means access to education, health and essential services – especially for girls and women; giving every young woman and man the chance to live as they choose; and developing sustainably and protecting the planet’s biodiversity.
“More than ever, it means living with others on the basis of tolerance, respect and mutual understanding,” he added.
“We are challenged today. We join forces here to promote a culture of peace, and yet all around us we see a spreading virus of war, of conflict, extremism, violence, hatred and terrorism.
“But I am convinced that our strongest arsenal in the face of these threats is not weapons or missiles or guns,” he stated. “It is our shared values … our common vision for peace, development and human rights … our universal aspiration for a meaningful culture of peace.”
Delivering remarks on behalf of Assembly President John Ashe, Vice-President Isabelle F. Picco said the desire for a culture of peace knows no boundaries and is inherent in the hearts of all people.
“It transcends gender, culture, religion, faith and belief, and unites the rich and poor, the old and young, East and West, North and South around a common desire.”
She added that the post-2015 development agenda that Member States are currently working on must be rooted in a culture of peace.
“Peace as an overarching theme must be woven throughout the goals and underpin the targets,” Ms. Picco stated. “And our new agenda must be backed by the political will, commitment, partnerships and financial support to help usher in a new era of peace on a global level.”
 [un.org]
9/9/14

Δευτέρα, Απριλίου 21, 2014

Dolphin wars in the Black Sea? - In recent years, U.S. Navy dolphins have been deployed to Iraq and Bahrain to patrol for enemy divers

The United States Navy has deployed military-trained dolphins to protect one of its warships in the Black Sea amid rising tensions with Russia over Ukraine, the Russian daily Izvestia reported.

A Russian fighter jet made multiple close-range passes near the USS Donald Cook, a Navy destroyer, on April 12, two days after it entered the Black Sea, passing the Turkish straits. As the crisis in Ukraine deepened, U.S. ship commanders considered the Russian action provocative and inconsistent with international agreements, prompting the ship to issue several radio queries and warnings.


According to Izvestia, the U.S. Navy has recently established a safe zone around the USS Donald Cook by deploying 10 military dolphins. Some Russians claimed on social media the two countries may soon engage in “a dolphin battle” in the Black Sea.

There were reported claims from the Crimean peninsula late last month that Russian forces had “taken control” of Ukraine’s secretive military dolphin program.

Starting in 2017, 24 of the U.S. Navy’s 80 military-trained dolphins will be replaced by a 12-foot unmanned torpedo-shaped vehicle, according to a report published by the San Diego Union-Tribune in late 2012.

In recent years, U.S. Navy dolphins have been deployed to Iraq and Bahrain to patrol for enemy divers and mark the locations of mines. Using their innate sonar, the mammals find and mark mines in shallow water, deep water when tethers are used and on the bottom where sediment cover and plant growth can hide the devices. 

[hurriyetdailynews.com]
21/4/14

Σάββατο, Ιανουαρίου 11, 2014

Ariel Sharon: A Bulldozer in War and Peace

Sharon was always consistent in his desire to secure Israel’s borders and was often photographed with a map in hand....

Israel’s indomitable lion Ariel Sharon, a bulldozer in war and peace, died on Saturday, eight years after suffering a massive brain hemorrhage that left him in a coma from which he never awoke.

Perhaps the most revered and often reviled of the country’s politicians, perceived alternately as a peacemaker and a warmonger, for decades his actions as a military commander and statesman shaped both Israel’s self-perception and the world’s image of the Jewish nation.


From the time he fought in Latrun as a young soldier to save Jerusalem in 1948 to his orchestration as prime minister of the Gaza pullout in August 2005, Sharon was at the center of the modern nation’s historical moments. And like the country he served for most of his 85 years, his life was marked by controversy, deep loss, harsh defeat and miraculous victory.

Sharon was always consistent in his desire to secure Israel’s borders and was often photographed with a map in hand. During his tenure as the 11th prime minister he was determined to redraw those borders based on his vision of the new strategic and demographic concerns of the 21st century. In this pursuit he was not afraid to tear down his own physical, ideological and political works. His health failed him before the task was finished.

Strikingly, throughout his life, either or by chance or design, much of what Sharon built or cherished was lost, destroyed or tarnished. His ability to sustain loss made him fearless in his public pursuits.

Sharon the soldier had seen his friends die in battle by age 20. The family man buried one son and two wives. The gallant military leader with a white bandage across his wounded forehead played an instrumental role in capturing the Sinai desert, only to return it to Egypt years later as a politician. The spiritual father of the settlement movement, Sharon claimed to know the driver of every crane building homes in the territories. But then, as defense minister, he was charged with the razing of the Yamit settlement in Sinai in 1982 and, as prime minister, he ordered the destruction of the Gaza settlements in 2005.

The leader of the Likud Party he had founded in 1973, Sharon catapulted it in 2003 from 19 to 40 Knesset mandates. But then, in November 2005, he crippled it by bolting to form the centrist Kadima Party, taking a host of prominent politicians from across the spectrum with him.

And as the avuncular elder statesman widely, though by no means universally, perceived to know better than his rivals how to steer Israel forward, he was well on his way to a third term in office when his stroke on January 4, 2006, halted his plans to shepherd the nation into a new dawn.

With his white hair, heavyset build, grandfatherly smile and the reading glasses that occasionally slipped down his nose, his image in his later years as well his conciliatory words belied his reputation as an authoritarian political leader and a brutal military commander.

For all the Israelis he alienated throughout his larger-than-life career, however, he was a man generally well-liked on the most personal levels – friendly, courteous and solicitous.

Sharon never left the spotlight for long after he came to national prominence as the dashing war hero of the 1950s. He was lauded as a master military strategist in the Sixties and Seventies. In the early Eighties as defense minister, he was blamed for the failures and excesses of the Lebanon War as well as the massacre of more than 700 Palestinians in the Sabra and Shatilla refugee camp at the hands of Christian Phalangists. As opposition leader in September 2000, his visit to the Temple Mount was used by the Palestinians as a pretext for the second intifada, and he was often a scapegoat for the continued conflict. Five years later, when he was felled by illness, his sudden forced departure from the political stage was perceived as a crisis for peace.

The sabra son of an immigrant Russian farmer who preferred his own counsel to the communal decisions of his neighbors, as prime minister Sharon turned his own similar preference for solo leadership into a diplomatic platform of unilateral disengagement from the Palestinians. It was a move that broke a deadlocked period in the conflict. But Sharon’s seemingly swift turnabout from right-wing leader who coined the famous phrase “the fate of Netzarim was the fate of Tel Aviv” to one who evacuated the Gaza settlement of Netzarim, left his dizzied supporters gasping at the betrayal.

  • Sharon liked to describe himself first and foremost as a Jew and then as a farmer. In addressing the United Nations General Assembly in September 2005 at the pinnacle of his popularity, he said, “My first love was and remains manual labor: sowing and harvesting, the pasture, the flock and the cattle.”

Circumstances intervened, he said, and instead his life’s path led him “to be a fighter and commander in all Israel’s wars.”

Now, he told world leaders, he had a different purpose. He was reaching out to the Palestinians in “reconciliation and compromise to end the bloody conflict and embark on the path which leads to peace. I view this as my calling and my primary mission for the coming years.”

Hard-line right-wingers who had long believed the prime minister was one of their staunchest advocates felt abandoned by his sudden shift to the Center. His opponents argued that Sharon was simply an opportunist, willing to pay any price and betray any ideal in the pursuit of power. Some said his political shift was designed to deflect corruption allegations, others that he had gone soft.

But Sharon himself had long said that he was not married to one specific path or ideology. “There is no advantage to the person who steadfastly maintains the same position over the years just for the sake of consistency," he said, as early as 1977.

In his autobiography, Warrior, he referred to himself as a “pragmatic Zionist,” a man of action rather than words. When he believed Jewish settlements created security, he constructed them. Persuaded that a security barrier was needed, he built that too.

Zalman Shoval, a former ambassador to the US and a long-time adviser, said Sharon was foremost “a pragmatist.” He belonged to a small group of similar-minded soldiers-turned-statesmen such as Moshe Dayan and Yitzhak Rabin whose primary consideration was security, rather than ideology, said Shoval. “So you never knew how they would act under certain circumstances.”

Proactive, rather than reactive, in this single-minded pursuit of his goals, Sharon pushed forward with a confident winner-take-all attitude.

Back in 1974, The Jerusalem Post predicted that this style of charging into battle would take him far. “Arik Sharon only knows frontal attacks. That is how he fought the Arabs, that is

how he captured the Likud and that is how he intends to storm and capture the State of Israel,” the Post said.

It was not by chance that in the 1970s, solders in his unit were already chanting, “Arik, king of Israel.”

His longtime friend, journalist Uri Dan, said Sharon loved challenges: “When he was told a mission was impossible, that is what he wanted to do.”

Like his biblical hero, Joshua, who blew down the walls of Jericho with a ram’s horn, Sharon bulldozed his way past all military and political obstacles. In the army, he dodged charges that he failed to follow orders and really accurate information to his superiors. In politics he brushed off his image as a has-been politician who attacked both friend and foe. Teflon-style. he survived unscathed allegations of financial corruption.

Former Likud MK Bennie Begin once said acerbically of Sharon that he was as likely to head their party as he was to become a tennis champion. But at the nadir of Sharon’s checkered army career, after he was forced to resign as defense minister in 1983 following Sabra and Shatilla, Dan made a different prediction.

“Those who rejected [Sharon as chief of staff got him in due time as defense minister,” said Dan. “And those who rejected him as defense minister will get him in due course as prime minister.”

Sharon said that his steadfast determination was rooted in his childhood work on a farm.

In an op-ed article for the Post in 1999 Sharon recalled a day he spent with his father at Kfar Malal. “I was working out in the field with my father on an intensely hot day as thirst plagued us and thousands of flies and gnats buzzed around us, getting into our eyes and noses. We, hoes in hand, continued to work. When my father Shmuel, of blessed memory, who was an agronomist, agricultural scientist and also an outstanding farmer, saw I was getting tired, he would stop a minute, point towards the ground we’d covered and say, “Look how much we’ve already done. And with renewed strength, we would continue work.”

It was this mind-set, wrote Sharon, that came to characterize his own indomitable approach - to daily life and to leading Israel.

“This has always been my way: to appreciate what we have already accomplished and to look forward optimistically.”  

http://www.jpost.com/National-News/Ariel-Sharon-A-Bulldozer-in-War-and-Peace-337663
11/1/14
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Δευτέρα, Ιουνίου 24, 2013

German, Turkish press declare war .... Bild carried Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on its cover with the caption “New Dictator”

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Media outlets in Turkey and Germany upped the severity of language of new reporting, amid rising tension between the countries that followed Berlin initiative to halt Turkey’s European Union bid.

The two have been in conflict since German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s statements on the ongoing Gezi Protests, and the daily newspapers of both countries have decided to join in.

German Bild carried Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on its cover with the caption “New Dictator,” depicting Erdoğan with a Hitler-like moustache. The cover was then featured on the front page of Turkish daily Takvim, who itself dubbed Merkel a “Nazi.”



Takvim also mentioned a 10-page supplement published by Der Spiegel on the issue of the Gezi protests, which the newspaper said would be distributed in Turkey as well.

Germany insisted last week on halting EU negotiations with Turkey as a response to Ankara’s recent police crackdown on Gezi Park protesters. The EU had been set to open talks on Chapter 22 next week, which would be the first new chapter to be opened in nearly 2.5 years. Berlin’s decision has stirred a huge reaction in Ankara, with EU Minister Egemen Bağış linking Berlin’s move to the upcoming parliamentary election campaign in Germany.

Daily Takvim has also recently been in the news for releasing a fake interview with senior CNN anchorwoman Christiane Amanpour on June 18, which claimed to feature a “confession” from Amanpour in which she “admitted” receiving money for giving the protests air time.

Amanpour was told of the “interview” soon after and posted the following on Twitter as a response: “Shame on you Takvim for publishing a fake interview with me.”

The Takvim reporter behind the story said the interview was “just sarcasm.”

June/23/2013
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  • EU summit to decide Turkey’s chapter fate....

An EU summit is set to decide on whether to open a new negotiation chapter with Turkey, with EU-Turkey tension running high after the Gezi Park protests....

With all eyes turned to Luxembourg, where EU ministers will discuss the opening of a new negotiation chapter with Turkey, a senior Turkish government official has expressed Ankara’s hope that “common sense will prevail” to prevent the situation from becoming a deeper problem.

The Foreign Affairs Council of the EU will convene today at the level of foreign ministers, under the leadership of High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton, in a highly critical meeting where a decision to open the chapter on regional policies will be discussed.

Despite the approval of 26 member countries, Germany stands as the only country that seems opposed to the opening of this chapter due to the ongoing spat between Berlin and Ankara over the Gezi Park protests. If opened, the chapter on regional policies will be the first in three years and could have a positive effect in reviving the negotiation process.....
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/eu-summit-to-decide-turkeys-chapter-fate.aspx?pageID=238&nID=49335&NewsCatID=351
24/6/13
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  • Der Spiegel' dedica su portada en turco a las protestas contra Erdogan.....

'Boyun Egme (¡No os dobleguéis!)', titula el semanario germano
En su interior, incluye una decena de páginas escritas en alemán y turco.....http://www.elmundo.es/elmundo/2013/06/23/internacional/1372001360.html
23/6/13 
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  • Verhandlungen über EU-Beitritt...
Gespräche mit der Türkei auf der Kippe...Bagis bekräftigte nun, er sei "komplett falsch verstanden" worden. "Ich habe Kanzlerin Merkel nicht gedroht.......

Die Europäische Union entscheidet heute, ob die Beitrittsgespräche mit der Türkei fortgesetzt werden. Derzeit beraten die EU-Botschafter über die Öffnung eines weiteren sogenannten Beitrittskapitels. Später wollen noch die EU-Außenminister in Luxemburg beraten.

Deutschland hatte zuletzt Bedenken geäußert, die Niederlande ebenfalls. Gegner eines türkischen EU-Beitritts sehen sich nach dem gewaltsamen Vorgehen der türkischen Sicherheitskräfte gegen Demonstranten in ihren Vorbehalten bestätigt.

Vor allem zwischen Deutschland und der Türkei war es daher zu diplomatischen Spannungen gekommen. Die Botschafter waren wechselseitig einbestellt worden.

"Andere Optionen"

Eine Blockade der Verhandlungen durch die Bundesregierung will die Türkei offenbar nicht einfach hinnehmen. "Wir arbeiten an einer Antwort", sagte Europaminister Egemen Bagis der "Süddeutschen Zeitung". "Nur so viel: Die Türkei hat auch noch andere Optionen." EU und die Türkei brauchten sich gegenseitig, sagte Bagis. "Es ist nicht fair, die Eröffnung des neuen Verhandlungskapitels, das vor allem ein technisches ist, wegen politischer Zwänge zu blockieren." Äußerungen von Bagis am vergangenen Donnerstag, die wie ein Ultimatum an Kanzlerin Angela Merkel geklungen hatten, relativierte er.

Bagis bekräftigte nun, er sei "komplett falsch verstanden" worden. "Ich habe Kanzlerin Merkel nicht gedroht. Ich war nur traurig zu hören, dass Deutschland die Blockade des nächsten Verhandlungskapitels betreibt, obwohl wir alle geforderten Voraussetzungen erfüllen", sagte er.......http://www.tagesschau.de/ausland/tuerkei-eubeitritt100.html
24/6/13
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Related:
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Turkey on way of being global power....

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TURKISH RIOTS LIVE RT...... Davutoglu: "We will restore order in Balkans, Mideast, Caucasus".....Gezi Parkı olaylarında son durum


Τετάρτη, Φεβρουαρίου 20, 2013

German industry, government planning for resource wars

By Peter Schwarz
20 February 2013
A year ago, leading German industrial companies launched the Resource Alliance (Rohstoffallianz) for the purpose of securing the supply of selected raw materials for its shareholders and corporate members. To achieve this goal, it is calling for the use of military assets.
In an interview with Reuters on Monday, the manager of the Resource Alliance, Dierk Paskert, called for “a strategically oriented foreign economic and security policy” to ensure the supply of raw materials for German business.
Although this policy should be guided by the “objective of free and transparent commodity markets,” Paskert said, “it would be naive to take this for granted in the near future.” Developments had moved in “exactly the opposite direction, unfortunately.” Therefore, Paskert concluded, “we [Germany], together with our partners in the EU and NATO, must take on more responsibility in foreign economic and security matters.”

“Taking responsibility in security matters” is a euphemism for military operations. This is indicated by the reference to NATO, a military alliance.
Paskert is calling for resource wars.
In response to a direct question posed by the business daily Handelsblatt—“Will we see resource wars?”—Paskert answered in the affirmative, citing historical precedent. “History shows,” he said, “that many conflicts have their origin in the fight for resources… The supply of raw materials is the basis for added value and the well-being of a country, and therefore has geo-political significance.” Handelsblatt openly presented the central issue. In a lengthy editorial on the Paskert interview, it wrote that industry would like to see “more government—and military—involvement in securing raw materials.” The editorial was published under the revealing headline “Expedition Raw Materials: Germany's new course.”
In political circles, Handelsblatt explained, this demand by industry is finding a hearing. For the government, “the control of raw materials is a ‘strategic issue’ for German foreign policy.” One can imagine “that existing raw material partnerships are not sufficient. ‘Security and military instruments’ are also required.”
According to Handelsblatt, the chancellor wants to appoint a coordinator who will “better dovetail the interests of strategic industries with defence and security technology, contributing to the securing of raw material supplies.” Strategic partners of Germany, such as Saudi Arabia, should be supported with weapons technology before Germany is forced in a crisis to send its own soldiers. And the armed forces should be “better prepared for their new role as guardians of strategic interests.” Handelsblatt cited the 2011 Defence Policy Guidelines, which declare that the “security of and access to natural resources” is the “most important security and military policy interest.”
This focus is not entirely new. In the mid-1990s, the Defence Policy Guidelines defined the main tasks of the Bundeswehr (German armed forces) as the “maintenance of free world trade and access to strategic raw materials.” This orientation paved the way for the transformation of the German military from a territorial defence force into an international intervention force.
In official propaganda, the military missions in the Balkans, Afghanistan and elsewhere were justified on humanitarian grounds or as part of the “war on terror.” The government and big business now believe, however, that the time has come to bring public opinion into line with the real aims of such operations.
In an interview with the Süddeutsche Zeitung on January 31, German Defence Minister Thomas de Maizière declared that in order to convey the need for direct military interventions in the future, a different sort of justification would have to be found. “International military operations have to be explained realistically,” he declared, “and the justifications should not sound too pathetic.”
Under the direction of de Maizière, the son of an army general and long-time chief of staff of the Bundeswehr, the transformation of the Bundeswehr is making rapid progress. Reconnaissance and transport capacities, as well as rapidly deployable combat troops, are being expanded. In addition, the Bundeswehr wants to acquire armed drones and two “joint support ships,” which, in the words of a senior officer, are suited to “demonstrating political will,” i.e., to intimidating opponents and rivals.
Germany is meanwhile becoming involved in imperialist wars with increasing aggressiveness. Whereas Berlin displayed certain reservations in Iraq in 2003 and even in the 2011 Libyan war, it now fully supports the French intervention in Mali and the preparations for war against Syria.
The background to this development is the intensified struggle for raw materials, especially with China. Last summer, Resource Alliance head Paskert declared in BusinessWeek: “When we consider that China consumes 40 percent of almost all commodities and its needs will continue to increase dramatically, I start to feel uncomfortable in the medium term. China is a giant vacuum cleaner that simply did not exist earlier. We should now give serious thought to the security of supplies for German industry.”
The call by German big business for resource wars recalls the darkest chapters of German history. German war aims in World War I—extensive annexations in France, the Benelux countries and Africa—were based on the requirements and plans of the “leading minds of business, politics and the military,” as the historian Fritz Fischer wrote in 1961 in his groundbreaking book Germany’s Aims in the First World War .
The same business circles then supported Hitler because his plans for world conquest and demand for “Lebensraum” in the East corresponded to their expansionist urge for raw materials and markets, and because he destroyed the organized labour movement.
Today, many companies, or their successors, that supported World War I and World War II are among the sponsors and members of the Resource Alliance. These include the chemical companies BASF and Bayer, which emerged from the infamous IG Farben; the steel giant ThyssenKrupp, a fusion of Thyssen and Krupp, both among the early supporters of the Nazis; the Volkswagen Group, which was founded on Hitler's initiative; and the car company BMW, whose main shareholders, the Quandt family, owe a large portion of their assets to the Nazi policy of Arianisation, forced labour and other Nazi crimes.
As stated on its web site, the Resource Alliance was founded by the “president of the Federation of German Industries, Prof. Dr Hans-Peter Keitel, at the end of 2010 to investigate developments in raw materials markets and the possible responses of industry.” Its top official, Dierk Paskert, is a senior manager who previously served on the board of E.ON, one of Germany's largest energy companies.
The Resource Alliance has very close relations with the German government. On behalf of Economics Minister Philipp Rösler, it manages a support programme that provides conditionally repayable loans to companies for the worldwide development of critical raw materials such as antimony, beryllium, cobalt, fluorspar, gallium, germanium, graphite, indium, magnesium, niobium, platinum group metals, rare earths, tantalum and tungsten.
The fact that German industry once more dares to openly call for imperialist war to secure its raw material needs must be taken as a warning to working people in Germany and in every other part of the world. It is a sharp expression of the growth of global economic and geo-political conflicts that lead inexorably in the direction of world war—unless the imperialists are disarmed through the revolutionary mobilization of the working class.
 .wsws.org
20/2/13

Σάββατο, Ιανουαρίου 05, 2013

Chinese protest Aso's visit to cemetery

Japanese Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso has visited the Japanese War Cemetery in Yangon during a three-day visit to Myanmar.
Friday’s visit raised protests from some Chinese war veterans living in the country, who were in Myanmar fighting the Japanese invaders during the Second World War.
Aso’s visit lasted only 15 minutes because of the protest. Chinese veterans accused Aso of trying to cover up Japanese crimes during the war and attempting to portray its aggression as reasonable.

Liu Dajiang, Former Chinese Expeditionary Force Member, said, "We strongly protest that Japan refuses to admit its history of aggression. The aggressive war brought about a great disaster to many Southeast Asian countries. I’m now over 90-years-old, but I have still come to express my strong protest. Many Japanese people don’t admit the mistakes. Japan must realize the disaster it brought to people in Southeast Asian countries."
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 .cntv.cn
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Japanese Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Taro Aso (2nd L) visits
the War Cemetery in Yangon, Myanmar, Jan. 4, 2013. Japanese Deputy Prime Minister
and Finance Minister Taro Aso's visit to the War Cemetery in Yangon's suburban
area Friday has raised protests by some war veterans who experienced the Japanese aggressive war in Myanmar. (Xinhua/U Aung)
Japanese Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Taro Aso (C, in White) visits
the War Cemetery in Yangon, Myanmar, Jan. 4, 2013. Japanese Deputy Prime Minister
and Finance Minister Taro Aso's visit to the War Cemetery in Yangon's suburban area
Friday has raised protests by some war veterans who experienced the Japanese
aggressive war in Myanmar. (Xinhua/U Aung)

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***S Korea says Japan must heal wounds of wartime excesses

SEOUL —
South Korea’s president-elect said on Friday that Japan needed to come to terms with its colonial history as tension between two Asian allies of the United States simmered over Japan’s rule of Korea and an island dispute.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in a Dec 31 interview he wanted to issue a statement that would supersede a landmark 1995 apology for Japan’s military aggression, a move bound to raise hackles in South Korea, ruled by Japan from 1910-1945, and in China, where bitter wartime memories run deep.
Japan’s top government spokesman, Yoshihide Suga, confirmed on Friday that Abe wanted to issue his own “forward-looking” statement but also told reporters the 1995 statement by then-premier Tomiichi Murayama would stand.
“The two sides must have a correct view of history and pursue a future of reconciliation and cooperation,” South Korean President-elect Park Geun-hye told Abe’s aide, Fukushiro Nukaga, in Seoul, according to her spokeswoman, Cho Yoon-sun.
A “correct view of history” is shorthand for South Korea’s desire for Japan to acknowledge its wartime and colonial excesses, something Tokyo says it has already done.
“The older generation must make the commitment to try to heal the wound, and must not become an obstacle to opening the way for the future generation.”
China’s Foreign Ministry said the Murayama statement was a “solemn declaration of attitudes and promises” made to countries in Asia victimized by Japanese invasion and colonisation.
“We hope Japan can adopt a spirit of reflecting on history and facing the future, and properly handle relevant issues,” ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told reporters in Beijing.
A handful of protesters assembled at Gimpo Airport outside Seoul ahead of Nukaga’s arrival and one stabbed himself in the stomach with a small knife and was taken to hospital.
Tensions over territorial claims and reparations and an apology for Korean sex slaves, known as comfort women, who were forced to work at Japanese military brothels, have spilled into the diplomatic arena as well as economics.
South Korea cancelled plans for an intelligence deal last year while a $57 billion currency swap to shore up Asia’s second- and fourth-largest economies was allowed to lapse after South Korea’s current president visited the disputed island.
On Thursday, a Seoul court ruled that a Chinese citizen who carried out an arson attack on the Yasukuni Shrine for war dead in Tokyo could not be extradited to Japan as he had committed a “political crime” and might not get a fair trial.
Abe told reporters in western Japan that the ruling was “extremely regrettable”. Nukaga echoed that stance but said he had conveyed a message from Abe seeking to improve ties and invited Park to visit Japan soon, Kyodo news agency reported.
Park is the daughter of military strongman Park Chung-hee who established diplomatic ties between the two countries in 1965 after more than a decade of tortured talks brokered by Washington, winning aid that helped his industrial drive that propelled South Korea from poverty to rich nation status.
Japan says it has settled all its obligations and has apologised for its colonial rule, although Abe’s government has raised doubts about whether it stands by a 1993 statement on comfort women as well as the 1995 apology by Murayama.
Seoul says there has not been sufficient apology for the hundreds of thousands of South Koreans used as sexual slaves by the Japanese army and that reparations are not complete.
Abe hails from a wealthy political family that includes a grandfather, Nobusuke Kishi, who was a wartime cabinet minister who was imprisoned but never tried as a war criminal after the war. He went on to become prime minister from 1957 to 1960.
Abe has promised not to yield in a territorial row with China over tiny islands in the East China Sea - known as the Senkaku in Japan and the Diaoyu in China - and boost defence spending to counter China’s growing influence.
Both Park and Abe are keen to bolster ties with the United States, a bulwark against China and the key military backer of the South against North Korea.
North Korea raised tensions in the region by launching a long-range rocket in December that it said was aimed at putting a scientific satellite in orbit, drawing international condemnation. It is banned from testing missile or nuclear technology under U.N. sanctions imposed after its 2006 and 2009 nuclear weapons tests. 
.japantoday.com
5/1/13

Παρασκευή, Δεκεμβρίου 28, 2012

Syria shells capital area as protests surge / two generals reportedly defect.


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Ex-general Abdel Aziz Jassem al-Shallal purportedly joins rebels on YouTube, saying army turned into "murderous gangs". ( 28-Dec-2012 ) 
State warplanes pound Damascus province, as anti-regime rallies erupt across country and two generals reportedly defect.


Syrian military planes have launched air raids in Damascus province after overnight bombardments and clashes across the country.
The raids on Friday came as Syrians took to the streets in fresh nationwide rallies against President Bashar al-Assad.
Government forces in the suburbs of Damascus have been trying to take back areas they had lost after rebel attacks on military checkpoints and activists say that further air raids were expected there.
In Damascus city, several rockets hit the Qaboon district in the northeast of the capital, activists said, while clashes between rebels and the army erupted in the southern neighbourhood of Qadam, which was also bombarded.
Fighting was also reported in Daraya, a town in southern Damascus, which Assad's forces have been trying to retake for weeks.
There were also clashes in Yalda in the south and Douma in the northeast,  as well as an attack on a military position northeast of Damascus between the  provincial town of Irbin and the suburb of Harasta.
In Aleppo, Syria's northern commercial hub, clashes took place between rebel fighters and army forces around an air force intelligence building in the Zahira quarter, a neighbourhood that has been surrounded by rebels for weeks.
Overnight shelling was also reported in the central provinces of Hama and Homs.
Generals' defection
At least 142 people were reported killed in violence across Syria. Activists say that more than 40,000 have been killed since an uprising against Assad began in mid-March 2011.
Meanwhile, officials at Turkey's foreign ministry on Friday said two Syrian air force generals have defected and crossed the border.
The officials said the two generals were "regional Syrian Air Force commanders" and are now in a camp where army defectors stay in Turkey.
They refused to give the generals' identities or say how they escaped from Syria. They spoke anonymously as they were not authorised to talk to the press.
The defection comes days after the commander of Syria's military police Major General Abdul-Aziz Jassem al-Shallal defected to Turkey.
Shallal is among the most senior members of Assad's military to defect. Dozens of Syrian generals have defected since the uprising began.
.aljazeera.com
28/12/12

Σάββατο, Δεκεμβρίου 22, 2012

Οι εξεγερμένοι της Συρίας προειδοποίησαν ότι θα έχουν ως στόχο το διεθνές αεροδρόμιο του Χαλεπίου.

Οι εξεγερμένοι της Συρίας προειδοποίησαν χθες Παρασκευή, 21/12/12, ότι θα έχουν ως στόχο το διεθνές αεροδρόμιο του Χαλεπίου. Η δήλωση αυτή γίνεται μετά την πρώτη άμεση στοχοποίηση πολιτικού αεροπλάνου που ετοιμαζόταν αν απογειωθεί και ήταν η πρώτη κατά την 21-μηνών εξέγερσή τους, μετέδωσε το Reuters.

Η επίθεση της Πέμπτης είναι ένα άλλο σημάδι της αυξανόμενης αυτοπεποίθησης των ανταρτών στις δυνάμεις τους καθώς άρχισαν και επιθέσεις στην κεντρική επαρχία Χάμα στοχεύοντας σε εδαφικές κατακτήσεις που θα κόψουν τις γραμμές ανεφοδιασμού του στρατού και θα αυξήσουν την πίεση στην πρωτεύουσα Δαμασκό νότια.



Κάποιος διοικητής των ανταρτών που δήλωσε ότι ονομάζετε Κχαλδουν (Khaldoun),μέσω του Skype, ισχυρίστηκε στο Reuters ότι ελεύθεροι σκοπευτές από την μονάδα ηλεκτρονικού πολέμου, μέρος κάποιας ισλαμικής ταξιαρχίας Jundallah, είχαν χτυπήσει τους τροχούς του RB201, πολιτικού αεροπλάνου των συριακών αερογραμμών, την Πέμπτη 20/12/12.

"Αυτές είναι προειδοποιητικές βολές», είπε, προσθέτοντας ότι το αεροπλάνο δεν μπόρεσε να απογειωθεί. «Θέλαμε να στείλουμε ένα μήνυμα στο καθεστώς ότι όλα τα αεροπλάνα τους - στρατιωτικά και πολιτικά -. Είναι μέσα στις δυνατότητές μας".
Δεν υπήρξε καμία άμεση αναφορά στο περιστατικό από τα κρατικά μέσα ενημέρωσης.
Οι αντάρτες κατηγορούν την κυβέρνηση ότι χρησημοποιεί πολιτικά  αεροσκάφοι για τη μεταφορά οπλισμού. Ισχυρίζονται επίσης οτι  ιρανικά μαχητικά   βοηθούν τις δυνάμεις πρόεδρο Μπασάρ αλ-Ασαντ. Οι αντάρτες έχουν κόψει πολλές από τις οδικές συνδέσεις με το Χαλέπι, τη μεγαλύτερη πόλη της Συρίας.......
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  • Syrian rebels say will target Aleppo airport
(Reuters) - Syrian rebels warned on Friday they will target the international airport of the northern city of Aleppo after firing at an airliner preparing to take off, the first direct attack on civilian a flight in the 21-month-old revolt.

Thursday's attack was another sign of the growing confidence of rebels who are also fighting an offensive in the central province of Hama, pursuing a string of territorial gains to try to cut army supply lines and pressure the capital Damascus to the south.

A rebel commander who gave his name as Khaldoun told Reuters by Skype that snipers from the Intelligence Armed Struggle Battalion, part of the Islamist Jundallah brigade, had hit the wheels of Syrian Airways flight RB201 on Thursday.

"Those were warning shots," he said, adding that the plane had been unable to take off. "We wanted to send a message to the regime that all their planes - military and civilian - are within our reach."

There was no immediate mention of the incident on Syrian state media.

Rebels accuse the government of using civilian aircraft to transport weapons and Iranian fighters who they say are helping President Bashar al-Assad's forces. Insurgents have cut off many of the road links to Aleppo, Syria's biggest city.

Fighting around Damascus has made the road to the capital's international airport unsafe for traffic. Foreign airlines have stopped flying there. According to flight schedules, the Cairo-bound RB201 usually flies from Damascus rather than Aleppo.

"What happened with Damascus airport will happen to Aleppo, even if the price is higher," Khaldoun said.

Another rebel urged civilians not to use Aleppo airport or Syrian Air flights "as they will be targets from now on"............Reuters.com 22/12/12
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ΣΧΕΤΙΚΟ:

Πέμπτη, Νοεμβρίου 29, 2012

U.N. Court Frees Former Leader of Kosovo

PARIS — A United Nations war crimes tribunal on Thursday acquitted the former prime minister of Kosovo, Ramush Haradinaj, for the second time of torturing and killing Serb civilians while he was a commander of the NATO-backed Kosovo Liberation Army during its fight for independence in 1999. 
Two of his comrades, Idriz Balaj and Lahi Brahimaj, were also acquitted, although Mr. Brahimaj has already served a six-year sentence for torture handed down in an earlier trial. The judges ordered the three men released immediately.

Supporters cheered and applauded in the courtroom’s public gallery in The Hague, where proceedings were broadcast via videostream.
The men were expected to return later in the day to Kosovo, where Mr. Haradinaj’s supporters — even before the verdict — said they hoped he would return to politics. In Serbia, which is involved in crucial talks with Kosovo, a former Serbian province before the war, the decision was expected to provoke a new wave of angry reactions.
Earlier this month, the tribunal enraged the Belgrade government and many Serbs, when an appeals chamber threw out the convictions of two Croatian generals, Ante Gotovina and Mladen Markac. They had led a 1995 military campaign that recaptured Serb-occupied Croatian land and drove more than 150,000 Serbs from Croatia.
The overturning of the Croatian and now the Kosovo convictions are seen as serious setbacks for the prosecution. It has said in recent days that it will seek a review of the Croatian appeals ruling, in which two of the five judges wrote unusually sharp dissents. 
29/11/12 
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ΚΚΕ: Καμία έκπληξη από την αθώωση του αρχηγού του UCK στη Χάγη

Σε σχόλιό του, για την αθώωση του πρώην αρχηγού του UCK και πρωθυπουργού του Κοσσόβου Ραμούς Χαραντινάι, το Γραφείο Τύπου της ΚΕ του ΚΚΕ σημειώνει:

 «Το Διεθνές Ποινικό Δικαστήριο της Χάγης αθώωσε τον διοικητή του UCK Ρ. Χαραντινάι, γιατί δεν βρήκε, όπως λέει, επαρκή στοιχεία για τις δολοφονίες – προβοκάτσιες, για το εμπόριο όπλων, ναρκωτικών κλπ.! Καμία έκπληξη.


Η έκπληξη θα ήταν αυτό το διορισμένο από τις ΗΠΑ και την ΕΕ δικαστήριο να έβλεπε τα κραυγαλέα εγκλήματα και να έβγαζε καταδικαστική απόφαση. Αυτά είναι τα όργανα τα οποία οι υποστηρικτές του καπιταλισμού τα παρουσιάζουν ως ανεξάρτητα και δίκαια». 
.902.gr
29/11/12
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Οι νεκροί Έλληνες στα μακεδονικά χώματα σάς κοιτούν με οργή

«Παριστάνετε τα "καλά παιδιά" ελπίζοντας στη στήριξη του διεθνή παράγοντα για να παραμείνετε στην εξουσία», ήταν η κατηγορία πο...