Posts Tagged ‘Hitler’

Philippines’ Duterte cancels Canada Bell helicopter deal to dodge Canadian human rights review — The man that likened himself to Hitler may be making the Philippines a pariah nation

February 9, 2018


© AFP/File | Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said it was unavoidable that the choppers would be used against ‘rebels and terrorists’

DAVAO (PHILIPPINES) (AFP) – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday abruptly cancelled a US$235 million contract to buy 16 helicopters from Canada after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government ordered a review over human rights concerns.”I want to tell the armed forces to cut the deal. Do not proceed anymore, and somehow we will look for another supplier,” he said of the deal for 16 Bell 412EPI utility helicopters announced by the two governments this week.

Ottawa said Thursday that the deal was under review due to concerns over the human rights record of Duterte, the subject of a complaint in the International Criminal Court over the alleged “mass murder” of thousands of Filipino drug suspects.

Bell Helicopter said in an announcement of the deal that the aircraft were intended “for a variety of missions such as disaster relief, search and rescue, passenger transport and utility transport”.

However Manila said they would also be used for “anti-terrorism” operations, including to evacuate soldiers wounded fighting insurgents.

Philippine troops are battling militants in the Muslim south and communist guerrillas in other parts of the mainly Catholic Asian nation.

Duterte said Friday he respected Canada’s stand but added it was unavoidable that the Philippine air force would used the choppers “against the rebels and terrorists”.

“Do not buy anymore from Canada and the US because there is always a condition attached,” he said, adding that he was referring to defence materiel.

“If I cannot use the gunship, the helicopter, then I might as well surrender this government to them,” he said, referring to the rebels.

“The reason I’m buying helicopters is because I want to finish them off,” Duterte added.

Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said Thursday that an “extremely rigorous human rights review” would be undertaken before any export permit was issued over the helicopter contract, facilitated by the Canadian Commercial Corp.

“The prime minister and I have been very clear about the Duterte regime’s human rights abuses and the extrajudicial killings,” she told parliament.

“I have the authority to deny a permit if I feel that it poses a risk to human rights, and I am prepared to do so,” Freeland added.

Trudeau said in November he had called out Duterte over “human rights, the rule of law, and specifically extrajudicial killings”.

Duterte, who has overseen a crackdown that has left nearly 4,000 drug suspects dead at the hands of the police, later described Trudeau’s comments as “a personal and official insult”.

The Philippine government says police have only shot suspects in self-defence and rejects human rights monitors’ description of the crackdown as a crime against humanity.



Philippines Mired In A War Against Reason

January 7, 2018
 / 05:10 AM January 07, 2018

“The fist is the synthesis of our theory.” That statement, made sometime in 1920, belongs to a militant follower of Il Duce, Benito Mussolini, the leader of Italian fascism.  But, it could have been uttered just as proudly by an ardent DDS (Diehard Duterte Supporter) while executing the fist salute made famous by President Du30. What it signifies is the primacy of symbols over ideas, of sensual experience over reasoned debate, and of sentiment over reason.

The writer Walter Benjamin observed that fascism marked not just the rise of strongmen but also the transformation of Europe’s politics into aesthetics. And, the ultimate aesthetic experience during that period was war. In Mr. Duterte’s time, the ultimate sensual experience has to be the slaughter of human beings in the name of the war on drugs.

There is no way one can reason against the spectacle of killing.  It is simply there, a banal reality of our times.  Whether the appropriate term is EJK (extrajudicial killing) or DUI (death under investigation) is no longer important. The government has gone past the debate on whether capital punishment should be restored or not. The killings have happened, and continue to happen, in vague retribution for some collective wrong. What’s important, we are told, is that something is being done at last about criminality.

Of course, the government insists there is no official policy to kill. Policies, after all, are subject to debate. Law enforcers do not debate whether they should kill or not. Killing, for them, is part of the reality of law enforcement, something that happens in the course of their daily work—a matter of self-defense, not of policy.

The killing of innocent bystanders as a result of police operations is likewise not a matter of policy. The correct label, we are told, is “collateral damage,” a blanket term that connotes a regrettable but excusable outcome. Nor can it be said that the government approves or tolerates the killing of drug suspects by unidentified gunmen. The appropriate authorities are supposedly investigating these deaths, even if finding the killers seems to be really low in their priorities.

But, what is perhaps most astonishing to the liberal sensibility is that the Filipino public’s response to these killings has generally been one of awe, rather than of outrage. That is what sets them apart from other forms of murder, and even from the classic cases of extrajudicial killings. In the latter, the public typically calls for justice in the name of the victims.  In the case of the drug killings, the call for justice, if there is any at all, is drowned out by an expressed readiness to believe that these executions are in fact a form of justice. The reasoning is that drug users and pushers destroy many lives, including their own. Therefore, they don’t deserve to live.

It is important to understand the public predisposition that is being mobilized in support of these killings. For, here, I think, lies the key to deciphering Mr. Duterte’s sustained popular appeal. It is a popularity that appears to be impermeable to any kind of objective reasoning because its wellsprings are basically emotional rather than rational. What I call Dutertismo draws from a deep aquifer of generalized public anger that is fed by chronic feelings of demoralization and powerlessness. Using the semantics of killing as its principal medium, Dutertismo communicates an unbending will to destroy with finality the enemies of the nation, whoever and wherever they may be.

This wasn’t at all obvious in the beginning, when Mr. Duterte was campaigning for the presidency. But a careful review of his speeches during the campaign would reveal, even then, a remarkable thematic preoccupation with the idea of killing. In one of the presidential debates, he asserted: “Anyone who is afraid to kill or be killed does not deserve to be president.” Many thought he was using hyperbolic language just to get the audience’s attention. Little did they realize he meant it literally.

The power to take a human being’s life has thus become the ultimate signifier for Mr. Duterte’s strongman rule. Everything else he does pales in comparison — whether it is the outright dismissal of a corrupt government official, or the crushing of a business group, or the destruction of an entire city to flush out the enemy. In wielding this power, Mr. Duterte has been able to command terror more than respect, awe more than trust, and subservience more than support.

There is a speaking style that is typical for this form of leadership. In Hitler and Mussolini, it took the form of the extensive use of rhythm and cadence, and the repetition of emotionally laden words. George Mosse, who studied Hitler’s speeches, described them as “logically constructed, but the inner logic was disguised by the rhythm and activity of the voice. The audience thus experienced the logic in the speeches emotionally; they felt only the militancy and the faith, without grasping the real content or reflecting on its meaning.”

We find little of that in Mr. Duterte’s oral communication.  More like streams of consciousness than methodically crafted messages, his long and meandering public speeches do not draw from existing models of powerful oratory. He is no Winston Churchill or Fidel Castro, or Claro M. Recto, but he’s a tireless storyteller. People listen to him as he weaves oral tapestries of gossipy references and allusions to people and events that he then embroiders with invectives, profanities, and curses. Various audiences hang on to his every word, not for the meaning but for the shock and awe, and the dark humor behind the words. It is an odd gift.

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Iran hits back over Saudi’s prince’s ‘Hitler’ comment

November 25, 2017

BBC News

Composite image of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin SalmanImage copyright REUTERS
Prince Mohammed bin Salman, right, warned against trying to appease Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

Iran has accused the Saudi crown prince of being “immature” after he described the Iranian Supreme Leader as the Hitler of the Middle East.

In a war of words between the two regional rivals, Iran’s foreign ministry said Prince Mohammed bin Salman should “ponder the fate” of regional dictators.

The prince, Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler, has taken a hard line on Iran.

He told the New York Times it could not be allowed to spread its influence.

“We learned from Europe that appeasement doesn’t work. We don’t want the new Hitler in Iran to repeat what happened in Europe in the Middle East,” he said, referring to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

His remarks drew a strong response from Tehran.

Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi accused the “adventurist” crown prince of “immature, inconsiderate, and baseless remarks and behaviour”, the semi-official Isna news agency reported.

“I strongly advise him to think and ponder upon the fate of the famous dictators of the region in the past few years now that he is thinking of considering their policies and behaviour as a role model,” he said.

Will Saudi Arabia go to war with Iran?

Relations between the two powers have become increasingly strained.

Earlier this month, the prince blamed Iran for a missile attack aimed at the Saudi capital, Riyadh, by rebels in neighbouring Yemen. He said the attack might be considered an act of war.

Iran denied it was involved.

Sunni-Muslim majority Saudi Arabia and Shia Muslim-led Iran are at loggerheads across the Middle East.

The Saudis accuse Iran of helping Shia Houthi rebels in Yemen, where a Saudi-led coalition has been fighting a war since 2015.

Iran and the rebels deny the charge.

Saudi Arabia has been widely blamed for exacerbating Yemen’s humanitarian crisis by imposing a blockade on the country.

Saudi Arabia has also warned against Iran’s growing influence in Iraq, where its proxy militias have played a key role in defeating so-called Islamic State, and in Syria, where it has militarily helped President Bashar al-Assad gain the upper hand in the civil war.

 Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

Both countries have also accused one another of trying to destabilise Lebanon, where the pro-Saudi prime minister leads a coalition including the Iranian-backed Hezbollah movement.

The prime minister, Saad Hariri, recently announced – then suspended – his resignation, accusing Iran and Hezbollah of sowing strife, while Iran accused Saudi Arabia of engineering the crisis.

Includes video:


Saudi Crown Prince Calls Iran’s Supreme Leader ‘New Hitler of the Middle East’

November 24, 2017

The statement sharply escalated the war of words between the Sunni Muslim kingdom and Shi’ite Iran, rivals in wars and political crises throughout the region

Reuters Nov 24, 2017 9:45 AM

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Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia November 7, 2017. HANDOUT/REUTERS

Saudi Arabia’s powerful Crown Prince called the Supreme Leader of Iran “the new Hitler of the Middle East” in an interview with The New York Times published on Thursday, sharply escalating the war of words between the arch-rivals.

The Sunni Muslim kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Shi‘ite Iran back rival sides in wars and political crises throughout the region.

Mohammed bin Salman, who is also Saudi defense minister in the U.S.-allied oil giant kingdom, suggested the Islamic Republic’s alleged expansion under Ayatollah Ali Khamenei needed to be confronted.

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Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, on May 2, 2016. Reuters file photo

“But we learned from Europe that appeasement doesn’t work. We don’t want the new Hitler in Iran to repeat what happened in Europe in the Middle East,” the paper quoted him as saying.


Tensions soared this month when Lebanon’s Saudi-allied Prime Minister Saad Hariri resigned in a television broadcast from Riyadh, citing the influence of Iran-backed Hezbollah in Lebanon and risks to his life.

Hezbollah called the move an act of war engineered by Saudi authorities, an accusation they denied.

Hariri has since suspended his resignation.

Saudi Arabia has launched thousands of air strikes in a 2-1/2-year-old war in neighboring Yemen to defeat the Iranian-aligned Houthi movement that seized broad swaths of the country.

Salman told The Times that the war was going in its favor and that its allies controlled 85 percent of Yemen’s territory.

The Houthis, however, still retain the main population centers despite the war effort by a Saudi-led military coalition which receives intelligence and refueling for its warplanes by the United States. Some 10,000 people have died in the conflict.

The group launched a ballistic missile toward Riyadh’s main airport on November 4, which Saudi Arabia decried as an act of war by Tehran.

Bin Salman said in May that the kingdom would make sure any future struggle between the two countries “is waged in Iran.”

For his part, Khamenei has referred to the House of Saud as an “accursed tree,” and Iranian officials have accused the kingdom of spreading terrorism.

read more:

See also:

Saudi Arabia’s Arab Spring, at Last
The New York Times

King Salman praying at Quba mosque in Medina, Saudi Arabia, this month. Credit Reuters


Sebastian Kurz to Hitler comparison sparks uproar in Austria

October 18, 2017

Sebastian Kurz is set to become Austrian chancellor aged just 31. A German satirical magazine has been heavily criticized for comparing the young politician to one of history’s most notorious figures.

Sebastian Kurz in Austria

In the run-up to Sunday’s Austrian elections, German media had accused frontrunner Sebastian Kurz of “fishing for far-right votes,” whipping up anti-Muslim sentiment and shifting his People’s Party (ÖVP) closer to the far-right Freedom Party (FPÖ).

Kurz, 31, now appears set to become Austria’s next chancellor after the ÖVP won the most votes in parliamentary elections .

Following his victory, German satirical magazine Titanic sparked an uproar in Austria after it published an image of Kurz with a target over his chest and the caption: “Finally possible: Killing baby Hitler!”

Austrian newspapers and Twitter users criticized the magazine within hours of Titanic posting the image on its official Twitter page.

The Austrian news website published an article on the incident with the headline, “Scandal: Satire magazine calls for the murder of Kurz,” while the daily tabloid newpaper Kronen Zeitung said the tweet was “unbelievable” and “tasteless.”

Read more: Europe reacts to Kurz victory

Vienna police said on Twitter they were investigating the image after a user asked them whether the magazine could be prosecuted.

“We have already forwarded this to the responsible authority,” it wrote in reply.

It was unclear at the time of writing how long the police’s investigation will take.

Adolf Hitler, who was born in Austria, ruled Nazi Germany from 1933 until his death in 1945.

Read more: Man dressed as Hitler arrested in Austria

Austria’s far right waits in the wings after Kurz victory

DW asked Christian Solmecke, an expert in media law in Cologne, Germany, about the case:

DW: Is there an incitement to murder in the magazine’s caricature?

Solmecke: If you want to determine whether an incitement to murder is liable for prosecution, you need to see the entire context. Here it’s very clear that there is no incitement to murder that should be taken seriously. In this respect, I believe no line has been crossed. The question naturally arises whether the post was libelous.

Read more: Austria to tear down Adolf Hitler’s place of birth in Braunau am Inn

DW: Is it in your opinion libelous to call the likely future Chancellor of Austria as “Baby Hitler”?

This is naturally a crass comparison. If you equate someone with Hitler, it’s usually an exaggeration. Satire is, at least in Germany, completely protected. The border [between satire and libel] is crossed in only a few exceptions. Even politicians, who also dole [insults] out, have to tolerate exaggerated insults from satire magazines. I therefore think that a court will ultimately find this post permissible.

Read more: Hitler doppelganger sighted near Nazi leader’s birthplace in Austria

Sebastian Kurz at party rallySebastian Kurz’s People’s Party won the most votes in Sunday’s parliamentary elections

DW: So the post is within the scope of what is legally allowed?

Even if you think it is outlandish and you don’t understand the joke or you think it’s a bad joke, it’s still within the scope of free expression. [The post] insinuates that Sebastian Kurz is relatively right-wing. Of course it’s an exaggerated insinuation, but that is exactly what satire is: exaggerated insinuation. Titanic’s opinion is clear: the wrong politician is about to become chancellor and that politician is too right-wing.

DW: How problematic is the suggested murder in this case?

The suggested murder is admittedly there and you can see the target placed on him. But the entire context – the post all the way to the satire magazine –  indicates that this is not a concrete incitement to murder. I therefore assume that state prosecutors will not start an investigation. And if they do, then they will close the investigation within a short space of time.

Funding Cut For Philippine Government Drug and Alcohol Rehab Centers — “Duterte Government is Not Committed to Life. Death is So Much Easier, Cheaper.”

September 10, 2017
According to media reports, the five regional drug treatment and rehabilitation centers being constructed in Taguig City and in the provinces of Isabela, Mountain Province, Palawan and Zamboanga are all funded by private money. KJ Rosales/File

MANILA, Philippines —  The Department of Health (DOH) allocation for next year’s operations of government-run drug abuse treatment and rehabilitation centers will be hit with a massive P2.31-billion cut under the proposed national budget for 2018, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto said yesterday.

Although the proposed gross budget for DOH in 2018 is P164.8 billion, which is nine percent higher than this year’s P151.3 billion, Recto noted that the DOH-managed rehabilitation facilities will go down to only P759.6 million from the current P3.08 billion.

“If drug addiction is a disease, is this budgetary prescription from our health officials the right one?” Recto said.

“The word from the DOH is that private donations will make up for the difference. If that is the case, DOH should submit a listing of where the replacement funds would come from because that is too big a vacuum to fill,” he added.

Recto said the unofficial explanation he got was that the so-called “mega rehab centers” will be built by private donors.

“Fine. But what about the manning of those centers? The training of personnel? Are the funds sought enough?” Recto said.

According to media reports, the five regional drug treatment and rehabilitation centers being constructed in Taguig City and in the provinces of Isabela, Mountain Province, Palawan and Zamboanga are all funded by private money.

The reduced P759.6 million budget being sought for 2018 will be used to run 14 drug abuse treatment and centers, one of which will be opened next year, and to support the operation of the  “mega rehab center” a Chinese tycoon built in Nueva Ecija.

“Is that money enough for the DOH hospitals with drug rehabilitation programs? Will it be enough to support community-level abatement programs?” he said.

He said the lack of rehabilitation centers will cripple the “declared government policy” to help substance abusers turn over a new leaf.

“The existing policy is still ‘save the users’ and not ‘salvage the users.’ For as long as that policy remains, then government is duty-bound to help those who have volunteered for treatment by providing a new path to a better life for them,” Recto added.

He said the government’s anti-drug drive hinges not on the mass killing of drug-dependents but on their mass rehabilitation. – With Rainier Allan Ronda

From Peace and Freedom

We at Peace and Freedom know hundreds of smart, young, well educated and employed former drug addicts and alcoholics. The key is a commitment to life and the associated funding to make that happen.

We spoke to a rehab specialist, a doctor who is himself a former drug addict who is now practicing medicine in the Philippines who told us, “The Duterte government has no commitment to life. Bullets and death are fast and inexpensive. The President’s assertion that addicts are not human beings has been condemned by every human rights group because the president is just wrong. Any father or mother or relative of a recovered drug addict or alcoholic can tell this government the joy of seeing human beings brought back from the doorstep of hell to become productive members of society. By underfunding rehab centers it is almost certain that wrongful deaths — called murders in most places — will continue at the hands of the very public servants that take an oath to keep us safe. They are all murderers — from the lowest member of the police to the members of the Senate and to the President himself. The Philippines could become a world leader in supporting life and addiction recovery. But instead the Philippines has chosen to become a nation of killers devoted to death and not life and certainly not devoted to real law.”


Philippine President Duterte’s Drug War Killings Not Based In Law

August 30, 2017
Philippine President Hears From France After Mischaracterization of French Law: “The presumption of innocence until proven guilty is at the core of the French judicial system.”
France has upheld the presumption of innocence since 1789, or before the declaration of Philippine independence. File photo

MANILA, Philippines — The Embassy of France in Manila on Wednesday issued a clarification following President Rodrigo Duterte’s incorrect reference to French criminal law.

Earlier this week, the president said that, in France, a person is guilty until proven innocent.

“They can detain a person almost indefinitely, under the French law. And the French law says you are guilty, and you have to prove your innocence. Here, the presumption is you are innocent,” Duterte said in a speech during the celebration of National Heroes’ Day.

The president made the remarks after criticizing Agnes Callamard, United Nations special rapporteur on extrajudicial killings, who is a French national but not a French politician.

RELATED: Pardon his French: Duterte curses at Callamard for comments on Kian case

The French Embassy, however, released a statement regarding Duterte’s mention of French criminal law.

 Image result for Duterte, Philippines, photos

“We have to point out that, as in the Philippines, the presumption of innocence until proven guilty is at the core of the French judicial system, based on the principles enshrined in the French Declaration of Human and Civic Rights of August 26, 1789,” the French Embassy said in a statement.

The French declaration states that “every man [is] presumed innocent until he has been pronounced guilty.”

Article 9 of the same declaration holds that “[If] it is thought indispensable to arrest him, all severity that may not be necessary to secure his person ought to be strictly suppressed by law.”

The embassy stressed that Paris strongly believes in the importance of the rule of law, due process and respect for human rights in all countries, including the Philippines.

France was among the UN Human Rights Council members who expressed concern over the human rights situation in the Philippines following its Universal Periodic Review earlier this year.

The French delegation urged the Philippines to take measures to put an end to extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions and allow the request for a visit of Callamard to look into such reports.

RELATED: Where nations stand on EJKs, death penalty in Philippines


French and Philippine legal exports told Peace and Freedom that President Duterte seems to think that drug users, pushers and drug traffickers are “not human” and this forms the basis of using police officers as executioners based on supposition (so called extrajudicial killings). The fact that a police officers does the killing lends no legality to the killing. A murderer is a murderer even if wearing a police uniform. The contention that drug users, pushers and drug traffickers are “not human” has no basis in international law according to several legal experts we spoke to.


  (August 28, 2016)

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Family of Kian Loyd Delos Santos seek peace after the wrongful death of their loved one. Philippine Star photo

 (Contains links to previous articles)

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Discarded — The body of a dead Filipino girl — killed in President Duterte’s war on drugs — looks like it has been put out with the trash….. Presidential spokesman Abella said the war on drugs is for the next generation of Filipinos.


Far-right extremism probe into elite German army unit opens

August 18, 2017

State prosecutors in the city of Tübingen have begun investigating whether right-wing activities took place at a farewell party for special forces in the Bundeswehr. It is the latest scandal to rock the German army.

German special forces

A prosecutor spokesperson from the state attorney’s office in the German city of Tübingen confirmed to DW on Thursday that it had begun looking into whether right-wing extremist behavior took place among Germany’s Special Force Commando (KSK), the nation’s elite military troops.

“We are examining the incident,” Nicolaus Wegele said via phone. He added that the investigation may eventually be taken over by the Stuttgart attorney since the alleged incidents took place near to that city in the town of Calw.

Stuttgart lies some 45 kilometers north of Tübingen in the federal state of Baden-Württemberg.

Read more: The Bundeswehr’s image problem – is it overrun with right-wing extremists?

The badge of the KSK Special Forces Commando of the German armyThe badge of the KSK (above), the German army’s elite special forces

Hitler salutes and pig heads

According to research undertaken by public German radio stations Radio Bremen, NDR, ZDF and ARD, KSK troops allegedly displayed extreme right-wing behavior at a goodbye party that took place on April 27, 2017 at a shooting range near Stuttgart. The troops reportedly gave the Hitler salute, listened to right-wing extremist rock music, and also organized a pig’s head toss.

Slaughtered pig heads are commonly used in right-wing extremist activities due to the animal’s association with the Kosher and Halal dietary restrictions for Jews and Muslims respectively.
Read more: German army sees spike in internal abuse complaints

Testimony from an eyewitness present at the events lead the Tübingen office to open its probe. The eyewitness said that a soldier friend of hers had invited her to the goodbye party so she could be the “main prize” for the head of the military company. She also reported having WhatsApp messages on her phone as proof.

The elite KSK troops were founded in 1996 in order to free and evacuate German hostages in war zones. Their operations are secret and have included missions in Afghanistan and the Balkans. Very little information about the KSK is made public due to the need to protect the soliders and their families.

Germany's Special Forces Commando KSK practice in Calw The KSK practice hostage rescue at their base in Calw in 2014

Read more: The German military and its troubled traditions

Bundeswehr criticizes Bundeswehr

The Bundeswehr has also opened an internal investigation into the matter, a military spokesperson confirmed to German news agency dpa, while emphasizing that none of the acts had yet been confirmed. The army reportedly knew of the incident in Calw as early as July 13.

On Thursday, military commissioner Hans-Peter Bartels on Thursday questioned why the Bundeswehr did not notify the state prosecution themselves once the incident became known rather than wait for the eyewitness to come forward independently.

“Showing the Hitler salute is not a question of taste. Playing music that disparages a democratic Germany is not a question of taste,” Bartels said. He called upon any soldiers with information to come forward. “Soldiers should defend democracy, not disparage it,” he added.

Read more: What draws right-wing extremists to the military?

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 Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen

The Bundeswehr’s latest far-right extremism scandal

The alleged far-right extremist incidents in Calw lengthens the list of scandals that the Bundeswehr has faced in recent months.

In April 2017, authorities arrested Franco A., an army lieutenant who was reportedly planning a terrorist attack and had been posing as a Syrian refugee. The odd case put the Bundeswehr on the defensive since it allegedly knew of Franco A.’s right-wing leanings as early as 2014 but did not intervene.

Just a few week’s after the arrest, investigators also uncovered Nazi memorabilia in troop barracks in Donaueschingen, including helmets from the Wehrmacht – the German military under Hitler. The Bundeswehr was founded in 1955, and many once-soldiers in the Wehrmacht began serving in the Bundeswehr.

Other scandals to rattle the Bundeswehr this year including allegations of hazing and sexual abuse. The scandals have led to tensions between Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen and top army brass.

Donald Trump’s Charlottesville Comments Draw the Attention of Cartoonists

August 13, 2017

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The Jerusalem Post
 AUGUST 13, 2017 07:58


After violent clashes in Charlottesville in which one woman died, US president denounced violence ‘on many sides.’

US President Donald Trump holds a rally with supporters in an arena in Youngstown, Ohio, US July 2

US President Donald Trump holds a rally with supporters in an arena in Youngstown, Ohio, US July 25, 2017. (photo credit:REUTERS)

In a televised announcement, Trump told reporters that he condemned the “hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides.” Trump’s decision not to specifically condemn the white supremacy rally where the violence occurred has earned him scorn.

We must remember this truth: No matter our color, creed, religion or political party, we are ALL AMERICANS FIRST.

John Cole, a Pennsylvania-based editorial cartoonist, tweeted four drawings. One depicted a man wearing a ‘Make America Great Again’ hat – a hallmark of Trump’s campaign and presidency – with a Hitler-esque mustache, standing in front of an American flag while performing a Nazi salute. Another showed Trump standing in front of a crowd of KKK members and other assumed white supremacists, with his arms opened to a Black couple, encouraging them to join him. One of the cartoons was a play on the film The Producers, in which a Jewish accountant helps produce a play about the ‘happy home life of Hitler.’

View image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter

I’ve drawn a few cartoons about @POTUS‘ normalization of white nationalism/neo-nazism. Here are a few. 

Trump’s statement that ”we are all Americans” drew criticism from many people.

The original rally, called ”Unite the Right,” was headlined by prominent white nationalists and neo-Nazis, including Richard Spencer and Jason Kessler. The organizers called the protest against what they saw was an infringement on the rights of white Americans, and a perceived special treatment of people of color and immigrants. The organizers also made explicit their support of the confederacy movement, a modern reincarnation of the original Confederacy.

The Confederacy was a union of slave-holding states that sought to secede from the United States, which led to the American Civil War.

Virginia was an important state in the Confederacy and throughout the South, the memory of the Civil War is a complex issue that deals with states’ rights, racial relations, and politics.

One of the more famous cartoons associated with the alt-right and the neo-Nazi movement during Trump’s campaign was Pepe the Frog, who reportedly made a few appearances at this weekend’s rally.

An alt-right protestor holds a sign depicting Pepe the Frog

An alt-right protestor holds a sign depicting Pepe the Frog

Philippines’ Duterte announces ‘dead or alive’ bounties — Calls for police officers to kill their colleagues

August 9, 2017


August 9, 2017

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte inspects a police honour guard

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte inspects a police honour guard

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday announced “dead-or-alive” bounties worth $40,000 each for policemen he accused of helping an accused narco-politician, and said he prefered they be killed.

The call for police officers to kill their colleagues is the latest inflammatory comment by Duterte in his controversial drug war, which has claimed thousands of lives, and comes shortly after a meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Duterte made the offer during a speech at national police headquarters, offering two million pesos ($40,000) for an unspecified number of officers who allegedly helped a mayor killed in an anti-drug operation on July 30.

“Each of those policemen carry on their heads now, I am announcing, two million per head and you are free to go on leave (to pursue them),” Duterte told the officers in the audience.

“I’ll cut short my speech so that you will have a chance for a crack at the two million for those idiots.”

Duterte added the bounty would be paid if the policemen were found “dead or alive — better dead”.

He said the unidentified policemen had worked with Reynaldo Parojinog, the mayor of the southern city of Ozamiz, who was killed in the pre-dawn raid along with his wife, his brother and 13 other people.

Police said they were forced to kill the 16 people in self-defence, but Parojinog’s lawyer has insisted the mayor and others had not resisted arrest.

Duterte had accused Parojinog of being a major drug trafficker.

As he has done in similar cases of alleged extrajudicial killings, Duterte on Wednesday also vowed to give legal protection to the policemen who killed Parojinog and the other 15.

If they were found guilty of murder, he would pardon them, he vowed.

Duterte easily won presidential elections last year after promising an unprecedented war on drugs in which tens of thousands of people would be killed.

Since he took office in the middle of last year, police have confirmed killing more than 3,400 people in anti-drug operations.

More than 2,000 other people have been killed in drug-related crimes and thousands more murdered in unexplained circumstances, according to police data.

Rights groups say many of those victims have been killed by government-backed vigilantes, and Duterte has boasted that he would be “” three million drug addicts.

Former US president Barack Obama was among the many international critics of Duterte’s tactics.

But criticism from the United States, the Philippines’ former colonial ruler and mutual defence partner, has been toned down under the administration of Donald Trump.

Tillerson met Duterte in Manila on Monday on the sidelines of a regional security forum. Duterte said American officials did not raise any concerns with him.