Tag Archives: violence

Swedish Nationalists March Amidst Rocks

In olden days when nationalism was rampant in many parts of Europe, neo-Nazi nationalists would march through streets dressed in black with music blaring and shouting their epithets of hate. A group of Swedish nationalists wanted to march to honor a dead king, but their attempt was met with angry insults and rocks thrown at them by liberals who wanted to deny their enemies an opportunity to display their ignorance. The Nationalists were guarded by police and allowed to do their thing, shout their anger, and then swiftly depart on trains.

The right to demonstrate is inherent in any democratic society. Those who hate neo-Nazis and resort to armed violence are acting just like the group they dislike. Let them march, let them shout hate in the open. The vast majority of people will shake their heads at the ignorance of these people who belong in a different time and a different place. If progressives use violence against those who preach violence, they have met the enemy and they have beome the enemy.

Racial Tension In Czech Republic As Neo-Nazis Riot

It was the 19th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution which freed people from control of the communists and it should have been a day in which people gathered to celebrate the joys of freedom. However, 600 right wing extremists confronted 1,000 police in the town of Litvinov where they had come to protest what they termed the inability of local authorities to handle its Roma population. The black-clad bullies and thugs who apparently desired to emulate their Nazi heroes, clashed with the police in their attempt to break through a barrier which separated them from the Roma population of the city. By the end of the day, seven police officers and seven of demonstrators were injured.

If not for the police there would have been serious injuries on both sides since the Romas were determined to fight back. The sad aspect of the story is the continued inability of a democratic society to recognize they can not establish democracy as long as some members of the community are treated like second class citizens.

Israel Security Chief Warns Of Violence

Israeli Shin Bet chief, Yuval Diskin, warned the Cabinet that action to remove West Bank settlers would most probably result in conflict that could turn violent. The Cabinet voted to end any support either direct or indirect to the illegal outposts which are constructed by extreme minded settlers who want Israel to rule the West Bank and have scant interest in the needs of Palestinians. “The scope of the conflict will be much larger than it is today and than it was during the disengagement,” warned Diskin. ‘Our investigation found a very high willingness among the public to use violence– not just stones, but live weapons– in order to prevent r halt a diplomatic process.”

There is evidence the settlers are trapped in messianic, mystic views that endow their actions with support from God. Right wing Israel fanatics believe they must fight to retain control of the West Bank as though it was something ordained in Heaven. Reality is there will not be peace between Israel and Palestinians without ending West Bank settlements as they presently exist.

Turkey Confronts Ethnic Conflict

Recent attacks on Turkish military forces by members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party(PKK) have raised ethnic tensions within the country. Within days after several Turkish soldiers were killed by Kurdish terrorists, anti-Kurd incidents broke out all over the nation. In an Ankara high school, leftist and rightist students engaged in fighting while thousands of emails appeared urging people to boycott Kurdish owned shops in the city. Even on Facebook, many anti-Kurdish groups have begun to emerge. Yusuf Alatas, of the Human Rights Association,(IHD) blamed government inaction as a source of this violence. “For a long time, people have been hearing propaganda aimed at provoking negative sentiments. when the first lynching attempts took place several years ago, instead of preventing or punishing the perpetrators, the security forces and the state sided with them.”

Many Turkish cities are reporting incidents of anti-Kurd attacks as well as am accelerating electronic assault on Kurds. One solution would be emphasizing multicultural education in schools and dealing with economic and social discrimination.

Yemen, The Prototype Of Why Terrorism Emerges

The editorial staff of the Yemen Times examined reasons why their nation has been home to so many terrorists in the world. They point out forty years ago, three issues dominated their nation– poverty, illiteracy, and disease, but the ensuing decades did not witness any of them being addressed by the government. Although, oil was discovered, nothing was ever done to stimulate other industries or to transform farms into modern successful enterprises. Infrastructure needs such as roads, electricity and water were ignored even though efforts to develop these aspects of society would have created jobs and stimulated education. Of the 23 million people, only about one-fourth live in cities and the remainder are in small villages and rural areas.

“Most Yemenis are not educated, particularly the women. Their daily life rotates around the field, their children and local social activities. They have no means to education, especially beyond the basic level” and women have scant opportunities to escape the vicious cycle of poverty and ignorance. There is only a mediocre healthcare system so most people rely on traditional medical care approaches that date back hundreds of years.

The editors raise the issue as to what has happened to the oil money. Why hasn’t it been channelled back into society or addressing needs for economic development? Failure to develop a sound education system and economic opportunities result in young men who have no prospects and thus become attracted to voice of violence. Yemen is not rule, not the exception. How many hundreds of millions of Saudi Arabia money has gone into developing religious schools which don’t even teach modern science? When will Saudis awake to the reality their failure to work with nations such as Yemen is the reason why terrorism is found in the world.

Zardari Becomes Pakistan President– Now What?

There was scant suspense as to who would be elected president of Pakistan since the Pakistan People’s Party(PPP)which has a majority was bound to have its leader, Asif Ali Zardari assume that position. However, he inherits a society that is fragmented, angry, confused, and divided as to how to proceed. Zardari, widower of the popular hero, Benazir Bhutto, must now deal with a host of problems and there is nothing in his background to suggest he has the capability of being an effective leader. Nighat Anis, a retired teacher in Islamabad, summed up the feeling of many when she said: “my worries are terrorism and rising prices, not the politics. Our children are either becoming militants, suicide bombers or victims of terrorist attacks. If he does it(solve problems)the whole nation will support him.”

Many people believe Pakistan support for the war in Afghanistan is a major reason why there nation is being targeted for terrorist attacks. Noor Ali, a fruit vendor, expressed the frustration of many, “Tell him we don’t want any more fighting. We want peace.” There undoubtedly is strong support for driving the Taliban from Pakistan soil, the problem is how to achieve that goal.

Most probably, at the core of conflict in Pakistan is the need to create a viable economy such as that found in India, one which offers economic opportunities to all within society.

Chaos In Kabul As Independence Day Arrives

Afghan police commanders have ordered 7,000 officers onto the capital’s streets, including the country’s youngest cadets, to secure Kabul ahead of Independence Day celebrations. The unprecedented blanket of security came amid a spike in violence throughout Afghanistan with more than 90 people killed in clashes and attacks. The Interior Ministry said police would search buildings and cars to “create an environment of trust and prevent any disruptive actions by the enemy.” An Afghan lawmaker pointed out a one or two day operation may protect government officials for a few days, but chaos is growing in Kabul.

Nearly seven years have passed since America launched its invasion of Afghanistan to drive out the Taliban and capture Osama bin Laden. The situation is worse today than when fighting “stopped” in 2001. Afghanistan is celebrating an “Independence Day” but the nation is far from being independent from violence.

Philippine Troops Battle Islamic Militants

The Philippines have been the scene of a thirty year war initiated by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front which seeks autonomy in the southern portion of the nation where Muslims constitute a high percentage of the population. The Philippine government recently negotiated a cease fire which would provide greater local autonomy to the Muslim insurgents, but violence emerged when Muslim fighters took possession of land owned by Christian farmers. A Filipino military officer said: “The government had given about 800 Muslim guerrillas until Friday to vacate several villages they had occupied” in violation of the truce agreement. Both sides now claim the other is initiating violence and has broken the truce.

The episode is merely another reminder of how 21st century religious violence continues to escalate in violence. Centuries ago, most Christian sects finally agreed they had to end killing one another. Hopefully, this spirit may capture the mood of 21st century religious leaders who engage in violence in the name of god.

China Arrests Monks In Tibet For Acts Of Violence

The world has responded with concern and assistance after the Chinese earthquakes which devastated regions of the nation and left thousands dead. There was an ourpouring of love and warmth as anti-Chinese feelings began to vanish. Instead of building on those positive feelings toward China, the government has decided to once again engage in a public relaitons fiasco by resurrecting the Tibet issue which essentially has disappeared from the foreign press. Xinhua News Agency announced that 16 monks had been arrested for planning violent acts ranging from blowing p an electric substation to a post office to a fuel dump and to private homes. The monks, for some reason, willing confessed while being questioned in a police station.

Naturally, the Chinese government blames foreign propaganda for influencing the minds of the monks and causing them to become terrorists. Of course, the notorious “Dalai Lama clique” is charged with being behind the alleged attacks. Of course, no such attacks ever occurred and no one was killed or injured, but the Xinhua News Agency is certain the monks are guilty.

When will the Chinese government ever learn to move away from preaching hatred toward the Dalai Lama and work with him to bring peace to Tibet. He is clear in seekng conciliation and peace.

Amnesty In Kenya Or Punishment?

The extensive violence that followed the flawed Kenya election continues raising issues concerning those who participated in the horrors. Hundreds of people were killed, many even burned in homes or churches. Kenya’s Justce, National Cohesion and Constitutional Affairs minister, Martha Karua, made clear there will be no amnesty or forgiveness for those who generated the outbreaks of hate and violence. “Some people have been calling for forgiveness of those arrested but I want to say that the due course of law must take charge.” Instead of amnesty, she wants to expedite the execution of the law against those who committed crimes in the name of politics.

Part of the problem is that high level leaders in Kenya’s government undoubtedly encouraged violence in order to prevent Raila Odinga’s opposition party from assuming power. At this point, those who followed and obeyed the call for violence are in jail, but the president and his cohorts remain free from being charged with anything. In fact, they continue ruling and continue using their power.