Tag Archives | Yemen

More than 2,800 people are dead in Yemen – so why aren’t we outraged?

In the summer of 2014, our screens were inundated with videos of the carnage from the streets of Gaza. The European media was outraged, and the sense of moral urgency was amplified across social media. Similar outrage greeted the destruction of UNESCO heritage sites in both Iraq and Syria with the condemnation of Islamic State’s barbarism reaching a crescendo when it overtook Syria’s majestic city of Palmyra.

Compare this coverage to the almost universal silence on the ongoing war in Yemen, which is largely absent from our TV screens, Facebook and Twitter trending topics sections and the front pages of broadsheet papers.

Admittedly, the Yemen conflict is a complicated matter, where the Saudi “bad guys” in the northern half of the country are looked upon as potential saviours in the southern half. The war includes a number of factions, and provides no easy narratives for the casual news watcher to follow.… Read the rest

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The Death Sentence That Could Inflame Sectarian Tensions Across The Middle East

Nimr al-Nimr (Photo: freenimr.org)

Nimr al-Nimr (Photo: freenimr.org)

Giorgio Cafiero writes at Foreign Policy in Focus:

Last October, Saudi Arabia’s Special Criminal Court sentenced Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr — a popular Shi’ite cleric and outspoken political dissident — to death.

This was not an ordinary criminal trial, even considering Saudi Arabia’s liberal use of capital punishment. Among other charges, the prosecutor sought to convict al-Nimr of “waging war on God” and “aiding terrorists,” even calling for the cleric to be publicly executed by “crucifixion.” In Saudi Arabia, this rare method of execution entails beheading the individual before publicly displaying his decapitated body.

The widely revered Shi’ite cleric was ultimately convicted of “disobeying” the king, waging violence against the state, inviting “foreign meddling” in the kingdom, inciting vandalism and sectarian violence, and insulting the Prophet Muhammad’s relatives. However, al-Nimr’s family and supporters claim that the ruling was politically driven and insist that the cleric led a non-violent movement committed to promoting Shi’ite rights, women’s rights, and democratic reform in Saudi Arabia.

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Why the Media is More Racist than Cliven Bundy | Weapons of Mass Distraction

Abby Martin calls out the corporate media’s incessant coverage of the Cliven Bundy Ranch story, whilst ignoring other important newsworthy issues such as record drone strikes in Yemen, the kidnapping of 230 Nigerian girls and the end of ‘net neutrality’.

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Dr. Noam Chomsky Breaks the Set on War, Imperialism, and Propaganda

On this episode of Breaking the Set, Abby Martin talks to Dr. Noam Chomsky, philosopher, linguist, professor, political critic, and author of over 100 books, about the Boston bombings, US terror inflicted abroad, drones, Obama’s rebranding of Bush administration policies, the National Defense Authorization Act & Holder v. Humanitarian Law, conventional wisdom, the evolution of media propaganda, and education as a form of elite indoctrination.

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Democracy Now’s interview of Jeremy Scahill: Assassinations, Drones, Dirty Wars, Asymmetric Warfare, and Africa’s Bleak Future

via chycho
To say that Democracy Now! is a powerhouse when it comes to tackling some of the most important issues of our time is an understatement. Since their inception in 1996 they have shared and provided a perspective that most mainstream media outlets have been restricted from reporting.

We were privy to an excellent example of such reporting on April 23-24 when Jeremy Scahill, “the National Security Correspondent for The Nation magazine and author of the international bestseller Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army”, was interviewed by Amy Goodman.

The first part of the interview is focused on Scahill discussing the implications of Obama’s kill list and the details of the administration’s assassination of Anwar al-Awlaki and his 16-year-old Denver-born son Abdulrahman, two U.S. citizens killed by drones strikes in Yemen in 2011.

In part 2 Scahill talks about the documentary based on his new book, “Dirty Wars: The World Is a Battlefield”, and gives us a glimpse into what the future holds in regards to asymmetric warfare, pays tribute to the importance of Wikileaks, and explains the reasons why the future of Africa looks so bleak.… Read the rest

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‘Covert’ U.S. Drone Operation in Yemen Mapped Out on Twitter

YemenThese “covert” operations are seemingly becoming more difficult to keep “covert” … Reports Chris Woods and Jack Serle of The Bureau of Investigative Journalism:

Though the hour was late, Yemen’s social media was still very much awake.

A US drone’s missiles had just slammed into a convoy of vehicles in a remote part of Yemen, killing three alleged militants.

The attack—like all other US drone strikes outside warzones—was supposed to be clandestine. Yet within minutes Sanaa-based lawyer Haykal Bafana was reporting the strike in almost-realtime. Just after 1 a.m. on May 17 he posted the following on Twitter:

NOW | Missile strike on car in Wadi Hadhramaut. Near city of Shibam. Suspected US drone attack.

As Bafana later explained to the Bureau, his relatives live in Shibam, a town of 30,000. ‘When the drone struck, the town—which was then experiencing a power cut—had completely lit up. My relatives got straight on the phone to tell me about the attack.’

‘No attacks so far’

The day prior to the strike Bafana had already tweeted that drones were behaving suspiciously in the area.… Read the rest

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Bomber in Plot on U.S. Airliner Said to Be a Double Agent

Flag of Al-Qaeda in Iraq

Fantastic spy novel stuff, but for real (apparently) per this report in the New York Times:

The would-be suicide bomber dispatched by the Yemen branch of Al Qaeda last month to blow up a United States-bound airliner was actually a double agent who infiltrated the terrorist group and volunteered for the suicide mission, American and foreign officials said Tuesday.

In an extraordinary intelligence coup, the agent left Yemen, traveling by way of the United Arab Emirates, and delivered both the innovative bomb designed for his air attack and critical information on the group’s leaders to the C.I.A., Saudi and other foreign intelligence agencies.

After spending weeks at the center of the terrorist network’s most dangerous affiliate, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the agent provided critical information that permitted the C.I.A. to direct the drone strike on Sunday that killed Fahd Mohammed Ahmed al-Quso, the group’s external operations director and a suspect in the bombing of the American destroyer Cole in Yemen in 2000.

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