Archive for the ‘Terrorism’ Category

Aphorism LXXXI

Sunday, July 6th, 2014

Some dictatorships and rogue states are kept alive by larger states to serve as disruptor states, to undermine and divert the resources of the rivals to the larger states. Several of the world’s dictatorships would not exist but for the fact that they served another state’s disrupting purpose. In this way, human misery is prolonged, human rights are eroded, and progress toward human freedom is delayed.

States that feed disruption in smaller states for the purpose of geopolitical strategy thus commit crimes against humanity.

For example, both the Nazis and the Soviets fueled anti-Semitism in Eastern Europe and the Middle East for geopolitical reasons. While both the Nazis and the Soviets are gone, their legacy of strategic hatred endures, and may endure for centuries.

© Copyright 2014, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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Aphorism LXXIX

Saturday, June 28th, 2014

Violent, oppressive, and genocidal fanaticism at the state and regional level sometimes makes war a necessity, just as organized and brutal crime makes the police a necessity. To disarm an aggressor is a moral act. But before war is made, all non-violent means must be exhausted. And after war is made, all who participated are responsible for rebuilding and peacemaking.

© Copyright 2014, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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The Disappeared in Ukraine — Mr. Putin’s Gangster Tactics?

Saturday, April 26th, 2014

It is time to speak out, loudly, for the disappeared, kidnapped, missing, and murdered journalists, civic, and local leaders in Ukraine, apparent victims of a state-supported ethnic Russian insurgency that has degenerated, perhaps by design, into hoodlumism. Some of those abducted, among whom are included international journalists, are documented by Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty.

Vladimir Putin’s attempted statesman-like argument in his 3/18/14 speech that Russia has a legitimate claim to reunify, citing the example of reunification of Germany post 1989, is undermined by the gangster tactics being used to destroy civil society in Ukraine with Russian-supporting insurgents apparently kidnapping local leaders and those who could report on Ukrainian events. One cannot pose as a statesman while allowing political kidnappings and murders to continue.

Such abductions appear simply to be a modern crowdsourcing of the same old gulag, where each abductee is introduced to their own private hell. Indeed, some abductees have been reportedly been tortured.

[Warning: if you don’t want your computer or website to be hacked, then stay away from Russian or proxy websites with videos of Mr. Putin’s speech.]

These numerous and systematic Ukraine kidnappings and killings are a human rights issue and should be confronted by an international human rights campaign bolstered by social media. Although world-wide human rights campaigns terrify totalitarian states, the current weak US administration is relatively silent on the human rights aspect of the Ukrainian disappeared, and thereby a great opportunity is being lost.

Human rights campaigns work in two important ways that frighten totalitarian regimes. One is that they erode international support among the intelligentsia and the young for the bullying regime, and the other is that they alienate both the intelligentsia and the young within the bullying state and strengthen the prospects of an eventual political opposition. Machiavellian tactics only endure when the pose of morally-based action can be maintained over time. Constantly shifting Machiavellian media pivots thereby gradually undermine a totalitarian regime’s credibility.

Even with technological advances, it is no longer possible for a totalitarian regime to shield all news out as when print and radio dominated the 1930s. So modern manipulators jimmy the news cycle to distract and misdirect world and local attention. But an unrelenting human rights campaign focused on individual suffering victims breaks through such manipulation, because human rights campaigns are based upon the compelling stories of unjustly persecuted individuals. And there is nothing so persuasive and arresting as the story of an unjustly suffering human being. No state can long succeed in standing between the compassion of one human being for another.

Therefore, we remember among those recently abducted: Artem Deynega, Paul Gogo, Kossimo Attanasio, Dmitry Galko, Serhiy Lefter, Yevhen Hapych, Vitaliy Kolupa, Irma Krat, Oleg Prokhorov, Volodymyr Rybak, Vadym Sukhonos, Mr. Yakymov, and Nelya Shtepa.

Each such disappeared person in Ukraine therefore needs to be supported by social media efforts. They should not be forgotten. Everyone who possibly can should share and link to the Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty website on The Abducted and the Missing in Ukraine.

And for all those uninformed pundits who think Mr. Putin is playing chess, the truth is, by allowing the kidnappings and murders to continue, Mr. Putin is now not even playing checkers. By letting his effort descend from statesmanship to ham-handed gangsterism, Mr. Putin will sooner than he thinks be out of pieces with which to play, even given the weakest US regime in recent memory.

© Copyright 2014, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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Habila Adamu’s Christian Witness; On the Continuing Threat of Boko Haram

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

On 11/13/13, Habila Adamu, from the Yobe state in Northern Nigeria, gave very moving testimony before the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations and the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Non-proliferation and Trade Committee on Foreign Affairs of the US House of Representatives about the threat of the Boko Haram organization, which at long last was declared as a “Foreign Terrorist Organization” by the U.S. Department of State on 11/13/13.

Kudos to the Jubilee Campaign for their work in making the US Congress aware of the threat of Boko Haram.

Another recent testimony by Habila Adamu, describing how he was shot in the face by Boko Haram —

© Copyright 2013, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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Those Who Fund Violence Should Forfeit Their Wealth

Saturday, August 31st, 2013

Petrodollars have placed Middle Eastern factionalism on the world’s center stage, and have resurrected an ascendant Persian empire in opposition. These two Middle Eastern regional forces are bombing each other for dominance in several factional and sectarian uprisings that have spread into Africa. The rest of the world is bankrolling this conflict by enriching the bankers of violence. No military action can stop this process in an of itself.

One way to reduce conflict in the Middle East and Africa therefore is to turn down its throttle — to systematically over time reduce the oligarchic concentration of wealth that is fueling the conflict. This reduction involves minimizing the flow of the world’s dollars to the bad actors.

Those who fund violence should pay a heavy financial price–the loss of their wealth–for doing so.

It’s time for the rest of the world to ride a bike, buy a hybrid, or take the bus, and for the petrodollar-funded financial sponsors of regional conflicts to be publicly identified and denied resources through every means of economic differentiation and penalty available, from consumer boycotts even to the point of having their wealth seized or embargoed by the international community. The international information economy could help realize such a strategy.

Such a strategy may not reduce the will to violence, but may reduce its means.

The fuel of violence must be made the most costly fuel of all.

© Copyright 2013, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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An Appeal to President Obama and His Government for the Release of Two Abducted Orthodox Christian Archbishops in Syria

Monday, April 29th, 2013

Please consider signing this whitehouse.gov petition calling for a response to the abduction of two Syrian Orthodox bishops, apparently by rebel forces. Their driver, a deacon, was executed during the abduction, and a picture of his body was made a grisly display on the Internet.

Please share this petition widely:

http://wh.gov/teJU

© Copyright 2013, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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Aphorism LXI

Saturday, April 20th, 2013

Reading the descriptions of the relatively peaceful high school years of the alleged second Boston Marathon Bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, I’m reminded once again that a given 19 year old male can be shaped into loyal marine, a holy monk, a heartless storm trooper, a dissociated prostitute, or a suicide bomber in just a few intense weeks.

Their heroic urge, their willingness to risk, and their lack of fear are often their undoing.

Nineteen year old men fight the wars of the world. Would that they could quickly pass through this critical year without injuring others, or their own souls!

Old men cry the wet tears of regret which lay dry within the eyes of the men of nineteen.

© Copyright 2013, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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An Urgent Petition to Classify a Murderous Group as Terrorist

Thursday, December 27th, 2012

The Jubilee Campaign has put out a call for the US Government to classify the violent Nigerian faction Boko Haram as terrorist under US law. The recent 2012 Christmas Eve killing of Nigerian Christians while at worship has been attributed to Boko Haram, as have thousands of other killings.

Concerned citizens have until 12/29/12 to sign a White House petition to classify Boko Haram as terrorist.

Please sign this petition immediately. Thanks!

© Copyright 2012, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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Implications of the Weapons from The Day the Earth Stood Still

Saturday, October 27th, 2012

Reports over the past years have tracked the progress of non-nuclear electromagnetic pulse weapons, which can disable most electronic components within a given area, reminiscent of the classic 1951 science fiction film, The Day the Earth Stood Still. Here’s a recent update on the development of one such EMP weapon.

Such weapons have both offensive and defensive capabilities. A city hit by such a weapon would immediately be cast into the 1940s pre-transistor age, but without having access to the analogue technology of the 1940s. Not only would communications and vehicles not work, but neither would hospital equipment, furnaces and refrigerators built with modern digital components, nor would the utilities supplying electricity, nor would in some cases water and natural gas utilities function properly. The maintenance of human subsistence in such areas would decline rapidly. Supply chains of food and medicine would dry up. Police and public safety officers would not be able to communicate with one another, and the web of human care which has been so advanced by electronic technology would revert to verbal, paper, and the most basic forms of communications. Google and Facebook and cell phones would be worthless, transactions would revert to cash and barter, and it may be difficult after such an attack for a city to even effectively signal its own surrender.

I can imagine a scenario in which a nation constantly besieged by terror attacks would keep a permanent EMP zone around itself, to prevent coordination of terror attacks or the use of any but the most basic weapons against itself. I can also imagine a more strategic scenario in which an entire country could be kept in a permanent 1940s state by repeated EMP attacks, and be forced to remain totally dependent on other countries for technology and goods and services. The use of such EMP weapons will change warfare forever.

Preparations for civil defense against such weapons are just about non-existent. I remember what life was like without our present technology, and as a person who studies planning and systems, I shudder to imagine what society would become if the use of such weapons against cities became widespread.

© Copyright 2012, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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Asia Bibi Still Facing Death in Pakistan under Blasphemy Laws

Monday, June 11th, 2012

Christian mother of five Asia Bibi continues to face death under Pakistan’s blasphemy laws.

Here’s a website dedicated to Asia Bibi’s freedom from the UK.

Please write your government representatives to help keep Asia Bibi alive.

Why don’t we pray in church more often for persecuted Christians around the world?

© Copyright 2012, Albert J. Schorsch, III
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