Monday, February 27, 2023

How the Cold War and now the War in Ukraine have Justified Abuse of Human Rights, Inhumane Sanctions, and Abuse of Power

    7:34 AM   No comments

Working hard to put pressure on countries from around the world to take a stand against Russia in relation to its military operation in Ukraine, the US government and its Western allies schedule two UNGA public votes just months apart, the most recent was just days before the one year anniversary of the start of the conflict. In both sessions, more countries from Africa voted against the resolution or abstained than from any other continent. Commentators and analysts attribute this neutrality to the role played by Russia and China most recently shoring up African economies. That may partly true. The more determinant factor that influence African leaders’ decision is the historical one: Africa’s lack of economic development was the outcome of Western colonialism (plunder of natural resources) which was motivated by racism (Apartheid systems), for which Western countries did not legally acknowledge and did not practically take full responsibility. If the West wants to have a “normal” relation with the African people, they must start there; not think in terms of handouts and bribery.

In the past, the US government and its allies justified their support to colonial, apartheid regimes in Africa, and their placement of self-determination movements and figures, like the ANC and Nelson Mandela, by the “cold War” conditions. They care for countering communism more than they cared for human rights.

Today, the US administration and its Western allies are operating with the same mentality: Countering Russia and China comes before respect for human rights and comes before remediation for past crimes and abuses.

These self-interested approaches are short-sighted, bigoted, and offensive to the people who were subjected to hundreds of years of Darwinian colonialism.


Monday, February 20, 2023

Over 100 children illegally employed by US slaughterhouse cleaning firm

    9:07 AM   No comments

More than 100 children have been discovered to be illegally employed by a slaughterhouse cleaning firm across the country, federal authorities said.

The Department of Labor announced that a federal investigation found Wisconsin-based Packers Sanitation Services Inc (PSSI) employed at least 102 children, ranging from 13 to 17 years old, to work overnight shifts at 13 meat processing facilities in eight states.

The investigation discovered that children were working with hazardous chemicals and cleaning meat processing equipment including back saws, brisket saws and head splitters. At least three minors suffered injuries while working for PSSI, one of the country’s largest food safety sanitation service providers.

The states in which the children were employed include Arkansas, Colorado, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, Tennessee and Texas. The processor which had the largest number of employed minors is JBS Foods, with 27 children employed, followed by Cargill Inc, which had 26 employed children.

Other processors include Tyson Food, George’s Inc, Buckhead Meat of Minnesota, Gibbon Packing Co, Greater Omaha Packing Co Inc, Maple Leaf Farms and Turkey Valley Farms.

According to court documents, a 14-year-old child who worked at a Nebraska facility from 11pm to 5am five to six days a week from December 2021 to April 2022, cleaned machines “used to cut meat”.

Read original article: Over 100 children illegally employed by US slaughterhouse cleaning firm

More than 7 mln children affected by major quakes

    9:01 AM   No comments
More than 7 million children have been affected by the massive earthquake and a major aftershock that devastated Türkiye and Syria last week, the United Nations said on Feb. 14. 

The death toll has risen to 31,974 in the Feb. 6’s quakes, approaching the number of people who lost their lives in the Erzincan quake in 1939, in which the most casualties were experienced in the history of the country.

Apart from the estimated death toll, Türkiye’s Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) also reported that more than 81,000 others were injured following the tremors felt in 10 southern provinces.

More than 3,170 aftershocks occurred in the region since the first earthquake hit 10 provinces on Feb. 6.

Over 8,000 people have been recovered alive from rubbles by search and rescue teams so far.

Over 6,500 professionals have inspected 763,000 buildings and 1,586,901 single spaces. Damage assessment is set to be completed within a week, while constructions are aimed to start before the end of the month. Permanent residences are planned to be delivered to earthquake victims within a year.

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