Photo: From just outside the main entrance of Masisi hospital the view stretches over the mountainous and sometimes conflict-wracked landscape of North Kivu. DRC 2011 © Yasuyoshi Chiba/Duckrabbit
While people living in Goma and sheltering in nearby camps continue to live in fear of new clashes between an armed group called the M23 and loyalist forces, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is witnessing increased violence in Masisi, some 80 kilometers (48 miles) to the northwest. In this isolated area of North Kivu, the medical emergency organization is providing support to the region’s primary hospital.
The violence, the fiercest since 2007, has forced tens of thousands of people to flee and has sharply restricted access to medical care around Masisi. MSF program manager Amaury Grégoire provides an update:
What is the current situation in the Masisi region?
We are very concerned by the sharp upturn in violence. The number of wounded that our surgical team has treated more than tripled in three months. Nearly one out of every five operations today involves people with gun or knife wounds. We have not seen this level of violence in since we arrived in Masisi in 2007.
What explains this upsurge in violence?
There are many armed groups in the region and the slightest disputes are resolved by violence. People are threatened and attacked every day at home, in the fields and on the road. These attacks are often motivated by money, but we are seeing increasing numbers of purely gratuitous attacks and ethnically-motivated assaults. They are perpetrated by armed groups but also by civilians who belong to other communities.
Who are the primary victims?
The wounded patients admitted to the hospital include armed men, of course, because the region was the scene of considerable fighting over the last few weeks. But we are also seeing a growing number of civilians, including women and children. In some cases, the violence has reached horrifying levels. On November 4, the village of Shoa, which is located a few kilometers from the town of Masisi, was attacked. Seven people who died from machete wounds were brought to us at the hospital. The victims included two pregnant women and a baby. Later, on November 29, following a series of attacks in the village of Kihuma the MSF teams treated 32 wounded patients, 8 of whom were suffering from violent trauma. This unprecedented violence left seven people dead that day.
Is MSF also seeing an increase in rapes?
In Masisi, our teams usually treat between 40 and 70 rape victims every month. In November, our teams treated 20 victims of sexual violence. We fear that this reduction is not a good sign. Unfortunately, violence towards women has not dropped all of a sudden. Insecurity and rising ethnic tensions create obstacles for people who need to come to the hospital or a health center. People are afraid and remain at home, often risking their life.
What is the direct impact of this new situation on people’s lives?
There are nearly 40,000 displaced persons around the two villages of Rubaya and Kibabi alone. These families are living in extremely precarious conditions and an outbreak of cholera made their situation even more desperate. In addition, people are afraid to go to health centers. With the exception of emergency visits, where we see a sharp increase in the number of victims of violence, admissions to the Masisi hospital have dropped considerably. We know the need is there but people are afraid to leave home. For example, there are many at-risk pregnancies in the region. In this area we have found that between five and 15 women out of 100 require an emergency Cesarean section. In the last few weeks, many fewer of those women have come in. In November, half of the beds were empty, while normally, most of our beds are occupied. It’s very worrisome. These women have no other alternatives and will be forced to give birth alone, without help. We know that some of them will not survive.
Photo: Residents of Gumuruk village in Jonglei State return to their homes after spending a month fleeing violence in the bush. South Sudan 2012 © Robin Meldrum/MSF
Ongoing violence in South Sudan’s Jonglei state has had a devastating impact on tens of thousands of people, with many forcibly displaced and further cut off from health care due to the destruction of medical facilities.
While Jonglei state has a long history of intercommunal cattle-raiding, thousands of civilians, including women, and children as young as four months old, have been caught up in violent attacks since 2009, which usually occur during the dry season. A disarmament campaign begun in mid-2012 led to widespread insecurity and was accompanied by abuses against civilians. Further fighting in Jonglei between a militia group and South Sudan’s armed forces has compounded the violence, causing new displacements at the height of malaria season. Health care is threatened as medical facilities are targeted and destroyed.
“Patients arriving in MSF clinics seeking treatment for injuries describe how they have been forced to make devastating decisions about which children to flee with and which children to leave behind,” said Chris Lockyear, MSF operational manager. “What we are seeing is an emergency; the lives and health of Jonglei’s population are hanging by a thread. The dry season is now upon us, making movement around the area possible again, and we fear a further spike in violence, injury, and displacement.”
“I’m not going to suggest all LGBT folks are non-violent because that would be silly. However, if you look at the organized movement toward LGBT equality, there are no mainstream or even left of mainstream organizations who advocate that the murder of people who are opposed to LGBT equality is a viable solution to meeting our goal.
“Yet a quick scan of the internet shows that there are calls for LGBT people to be ‘penned up,’ urges the abduction of the children of LGBT people, calls for the government to ‘kill the gays.’ Now the FRC is suggesting that the Southern Poverty Law Center’s labeling of them as a hate group encouraged this shooting. I would suggest that the culture that SPLC is creating is one aimed at denouncing hate and calling out the institutions that perpetrate that hate.
“I would further suggest that SPLC did not urge its constituency to pen anyone up, take their children or ask the government to murder them. Much of the culture that is created from the right, however, is predicated on violence being the solution to “the homosexual” problem and inciting this violence. And we see that violence being carried out every day. Shooting anyone associated with FCR is wrong. And so is creating a culture that would suggest that this violence is ever a solution to our differences.”
Unlike the beautiful 6-year old Jonbenett Ramsey who received coverage all over the media - every tabloid, newspaper, news channel, talk show, 7-year old Aiyana Stanley was killed by a police officer during a raid while she was sleep and her murder received very little coverage.
Police, searching for a murder suspect, threw a flash grenade through the window of her family’s apartment around midnight. According to Aiyana’s father, it landed on the couch, setting Aiyana on fire. A police officer’s gun then went off, and shot Aiyana in the neck.
Aiyana was asleep on the living room sofa in her family’s apartment when Detroit police, searching for a homicide suspect, burst in and an officer’s gun went off, fatally striking the girl in the neck, family members said.
Her father, 25-year-old Charles Jones, told The Detroit News he had just gone to bed early Sunday after covering his daughter with her favorite blanket when he heard a flash grenade followed by a gunshot. When he rushed into the living room, he said, police forced him to lie on the ground, with his face in his daughter’s blood.
“I’ll never be the same. That’s my only daughter,” Jones told.
We haven’t forgotten about you baby. R.I.P.
WHAT THE FUCK.
As I said in a previous post: it doesn’t take a study to show that racism and violence towards people of color is prevalent in our society. It’s time to stop studying the problem and start doing something about it.
Dear Obama, when a U.S. drone missile kills a child in Yemen, the father will go to war with you, guaranteed. Nothing to do with Al Qaeda.
Unfortunately, liberal voices in the United States are largely ignoring, if not condoning, civilian deaths and extrajudicial killings in Yemen — including the assassination of three American citizens in September 2011, including a 16-year-old. During George W. Bush’s presidency, the rage would have been tremendous. But today there is little outcry, even though what is happening is in many ways an escalation of Mr. Bush’s policies.
It’s amazing how the US government and general public fails to realize one basic truth: Violence begets violence.
Omg seriously, I’ve never met a feminist who was okay with violence against ANYONE.
Excerpt from article:
Agreed with what the pollsters considered a “harmful stereotype” about gender, such as
‘Girls are always trying to get boys to do what they want’
‘With boyfriends and girlfriends, boys should be smarter than girls.’ “
Parents, please start talking to your kids about relationship abuse and dating violence as soon as they start talking about crushes. -Jess
Rape culture affects children as well. How many little boys are pressured into thinking they should be going after sex viciously? How many little girls are bombarded by the madonna/whore dichotomy, expected to somehow navigate how to be virginal without being a ‘prude bitch’ and how to be fun and wanted by guys and have a relationship without being a ‘slut’, realizing that the decision to have sex is a personal choice without shame and has nothing to do with anyone else? Children are not taught to respect their bodies and the bodies of others. They are taught that society is able to label and control bodies and people should just accept it, that your body is not yours, that they should be ashamed of and fear their bodies. This needs to stop.
Teach body acceptance and self-respect, not slut-shaming and abstinence for girls while boys’ sexuality is not discussed at all, as though their bodies cannot be harmed and are invincible and sex is good for them all the time, like vitamins, unless it’s gay sex, because then they are women and the slut-shaming begins again. Also, that lesbian sex does not exist because sex requires a penis at all times because it’s the most important thing in the universe. Society has failed children in so many ways and it keeps getting worse.
Last summer, CeCe McDonald, a young African American transgender woman, was violently attacked in the heart of South Minneapolis. As she and several friends, also African American and queer or allied, were walking to the grocery store, a group of white adults standing outside of a bar started shouting racist and transphobic insults at them, calling the youth “faggots,” “niggers,” and “chicks with dicks”. Tragically, the violence did not stop there- one of the white adults slashed CeCe across the face with a broken bottle, cutting all the way through her cheek, and another of the attackers was fatally stabbed.
Amazingly, in the aftermath of this racist and transphobic attack, the only person facing charges is CeCe McDonald- the victim. Michael Freeman, the Hennepin County Attorney, has charged CeCe with two counts of second degree murder. Because of these charges, she has been unable to recover from the attack and prevented from continuing her studies at the Minneapolis Community Technical College. Considering that County Attorney Michael Freeman has dropped charges in similar situations this year and that he has advocated strongly for programs to keep kids in school, arguing “We all know that when kids miss school they don’t learn,” why is Michael Freeman ruthlessly going after this young student?
We refuse to allow racism and transphobia, on Minnapolis streets or in Minneapolis courts. We support CeCe. We are waiting for County Attorney Michael Freeman to honor his committment, in his words “to serve all of our citizens with understanding, dignity, and respect” by dropping the charges against CeCe McDonald.
Michael Freeman: Minneapolis says, FREE CECE.”
(from the website, sign below)
The petition is here. There’s only 6577 signatures. Sign it and reblog.
only 6985 signatures. let’s do more better with this.
8400 signatures. less than 2000 left. come on come on come on
One week after two Humphreys Co TN cops are indited for severely beating a handcuffed man, two more decide to follow an innocent man far out of their jurisdiction then beat him and search his business without cause or warrant*
WAVERLY, TN (WSMV) -
A local county law enforcement agency, already facing federal indictment, may have another black eye. Once again it involves a Humphreys County sheriff’s deputy beating an unarmed man.
But this time, the accused deputy wasn’t even in his own jurisdiction. He was in another county.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is looking into the accusations after a tow truck driver named Glenn Capps says he was getting cigarettes at the Pilot station in Humphreys County.
Capps was then followed by Humphreys County deputies who said Capps was suspicious. He was followed all the way to Hickman County, where Capps was inside the Barnett’s Wrecker Service building.
Then, according to Capps, he told the officers to go away and that they had no jurisdiction. The officers then entered the building.
Now, Capps’ nose is broken, and he is charged with resisting arrest and driving on an expired license.
“With no probable cause, his face was smashed into a car and the building searched. All without a warrant and all outside of Humphreys County,” said 23rd District Public Defender Jake Lockert.
Humphreys County Sheriff Chris Davis fired one of the officers and suspended the other after he looked at the high quality surveillance tape at Barnett’s.
Mike Patrick, a city attorney in New Johnsonville, a judge in McEwen and a lawyer in Waverly, has filed an ouster lawsuit to remove Sheriff Davis.
“The county deserves better that we’ve got, and what we’ve got I think is escalating and deteriorating at the same time,” Patrick said.
Patrick contends there are so many things wrong with the beating and arrest of Capps it’s hard to decide what is most wrong.
“Without provocation, without justification, without the color of the law,” he said. “Throw the constitution out the window and call it a day. Nothing about this appears to be right, but thank God for video cameras.”
Patrick has subpoenaed the videotape. He has legal right, because of his ouster suit, and he is expected to get that tape from the TBI next week.
Last week, the Justice Department indicted two other Humphreys County sheriff’s deputies for allegedly violating the civil rights of an unarmed man.
Tim Hedge, 50, and Benji Lee, 32, face a sentence of up to 10 years in prison if they are convicted in the case of the videotaped beating of Darrin Ring in January 2011.
Ring was reportedly beaten and tasered for 19 minutes. He was then taken to jail where witnesses say he was beaten and tasered again.
Most of the beating and tasering reportedly came after Ring was handcuffed by the deputies, and his injuries included broken ribs and a punctured lung.
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It’s not that its just offensive, it also poses a risk to the safety of these people. I’m pretty sure stalking people online and posting their pictures, names, and addresses online with the intent of outing them and possibly inciting violence against them violates your terms of service if not the law.
Are you fuckin serious
LET ME QUOTE YOUR FUCKING NEW TERMS OF SERVICE BACK TO YOU TUMBLR
“Don’t post content that violates anyone’s privacy, including personally identifying or confidential information like credit card numbers, social security numbers, unlisted contact information, or private photos of your ex’s junk (no matter how attractive).”
I’M PRETTY FUCKING SURE OUTING MEMBERS OF THE GSM COMMUNITY AND SENDING LETTERS TO THEIR PARENTS SHOULD FALL UNDER THAT CATEGORY????
Not to mention posting their addresses when the blog’s followers are probably homophobic and opening these people up to violence and possibly murder. People are still beaten and killed for being LGBTQ. This is really horrible and that person should be arrested.
At least 10 people were killed, including a 6-year-old girl, in shootings over the weekend in Chicago. The slain were among at least 49 people wounded in shootings from 5 p.m. Friday to 6 a.m. Monday.
I remember earlier this year, the media outlets reported with joy over the fact that Chicago had an entire week with no shooting-related deaths. I was upset not because they spoke too soon, but because these sort of things are reported at all. It was a report on a lack of violence, a change from the usual.
I went home this weekend and my mother said, “We just don’t know what to do with the heat.” This might be true, but more than anything, it feels like, We just don’t know what to do, period. Murders might be down, but 49 shootings in less than 3 days does not feel like progress.
Chicago’s segregation isolates the violence, both in place and in mind. We begin to think of Chicago in multiples, as different pieces that never form a whole. It is not a city of neighborhoods, but multiple cities with the same name.
TRIGGER WARNING: RACISM, VIOLENCE, DEATH
Unarmed Black Teen Gunned Down By Neighborhood Watch Leader After Being Deemed Suspicious
Trayvon “Trey” Martin, 17, of Miami was visiting relatives living in a gated community in Sanford, Florida. He had just left a local 7-11 after buying a snack and was on his way home around 7:00 PM on February 26. George Zimmerman, a 26-year-old member of the local neighborhood watch, saw Martin and called police to report a suspicious man in the community. He tailed Martin in his car. He had a loaded pistol on him. The police told Zimmerman they would handle it.
For some reason, Zimmerman didn’t obey. Minutes later, a number of local residents called police to report a fight. A gunshot was heard. Martin died 70 yards from the house he was staying in. Zimmerman was arrested and then released. He was carrying the pistol legally and has claimed that he was acting in self-defense.
Said Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee Jr. in an interview with the Huffington Post, “For some reason he (Zimmerman) felt that Trayvon, the way that he was walking or appeared seemed suspicious to him.”
Ah, yes. The way he was walking and his appearance were deemed “suspicious.” Oh, did I forget to mention that Martin is black? And that the gated community, called Retreat at Twin Lakes, is predominantly white?
Martin’s parents are demanding the police make an arrest and release the 911 call. They are expected to file a suit in state court on Friday.
“Zimmerman, an adult, had a gun. Trayvon Martin, a 17-year-old, had Skittles. No way you can say self-defense,” said the family’s attorney, Benjamin Crump.
what the fuck do you mean they’re calling for his arrest. the fact that Zimmerman isn’t right now in custody is all the proof anyone needs of what is still happening in this country.
What irks me the most about this situation is that Zimmerman is trying to claim self defense. How in the hell are you going to plead self defense against a 17-year-old boy when he had nothing but Skittles in one pocket and a damn iced tea in the other?
Is it possibly THAT hard to just be a decent human being and admit that the basis of your “suspicion” came from the fact that he was black?
Some reports are stating that when police arrived on the scene Zimmerman’s back was wet, his nose was bloodied, and he was yelling about how he cried for help and no one came. So “‘There is some physical evidence and some testimony that would corroborate [his claim of self defense].” Which is fucking ridiculous.
He was a twenty six year old man in a car following a seventeen year old kid at night. He has all the power in this situation. He is older, he is more familiar with the area, he is armed, and he is inside a goddamn car. The only way an altercation occurs is if he gets out of his car. If it’s night and I’m walking alone and a car begins to follow me, I am going to be terrified of that car and it’s driver. I can completely understand a young kid reacting aggressively in that situation because that’s a terrifying situation to find yourself in. The only person who should be held responsible for any alteracation that occured is the grown ass man who thought it appropriate to follow a young kid around in the dark after the police dispatch explicitly told him not to do so and then GOT OUT OF HIS CAR.
Zimmerman is clearly and undeniably the aggressor here and the fact that he has not been arrested is disgusting.
I don’t even know what to say.
Wow. This is fucking bullshit. Seriously, America. What is this? It’s manslaughter, murder in the first. Please send this psychotic asshole to jail because if you don’t, he can kill anyone and you’re basically showing other people that you can get away with killing minority kids cuz no one cares about them.
It is always morally superior, [Gandhi] insisted, to oppose injustice through non-violent means than through violent means. However, to oppose injustice through violent means is still morally superior to not doing anything to oppose injustice at all.
“And Gandhi was talking about people who were blowing up trains, or assassinating government officials. Not damaging windows or spray-painting rude things about the police.
I don’t particularly give a damn about bourgeois or corporate property. I will shed no tear over a smashed window of a multi-billion dollar corporation. Nor will I feel bad for the owner of a police car destroyed by any group of protesters.
However, there is a difference between one’s abstract ideological sympathies, on the one hand, and the strategic application of concrete tactics in struggle, on the other. The tendency by some would-be ‘ultra-leftists’ to fetishize violence and property damage in all circumstances, is highly dogmatic, counterproductive, and ultimately undemocratic in the extreme.
In this way, the proponents of ‘propaganda of the deed’ who fetishize violence and provocative confrontation as the ’end-all, be-all’, are merely expressing the inverse of the irrational, undemocratic dogmatism of those pacifists who ceaselessly preach ‘non-violence’ in even the most revolutionary of circumstances.
I am a firm believer in the importance of mass, democratic struggle. At an early stage of the development of a struggle, this may mean nothing more than a peaceful, mass march. At another stage (for instance, see Egypt’s revolution or the 1992 L.A. Rebellion), this may mean physically attacking police, reactionary businesses, or political party offices.
The question in the end is simply one of accurately assessing the current mood and desires of the mass base of the movement and figuring out what tactic at a given juncture is best suited to both express the mood of the majority, while also seeking to push things forward as far as that majority is willing to go at that moment.
It does no good if you as an individual are ready to set up barricades in the streets and commence with a revolutionary struggle for power, if the mass of people are not. In fact, it actually tends to have a counterproductive effect, inviting mass repression by the police while also arresting or even retarding the process whereby masses of people are drawn into closer contact with and affinity for the more revolutionary-minded among their ranks.