Ronan L Tynan – Week 1:
22 May, 2016:
Israel Drifts Even Further Towards The Abyss
There was a watershed moment in Israeli politics this week when Defence Minister Moshe Ya’alon, whom I regard as a very right politician, was replaced by someone who is very dangerously further to the right. Indeed, many are worried about his replacement given the extreme racist and downright Fascist rhetoric he has used against the Palestinians in the past. In other words, what Ya’alon said about his replacement Avigador Liberman cannot be ignored – “extremist and dangerous forces have taken over Israel and the Likud movement and are destabilising our home and threatening to harm its inhabitants. Which means it is fair to suggest Israel is on the edge of the abyss? And in case you think I am engaging in hyperbole former Prime Minister Ehud Barack said, also speaking about Liberman’s appointment, Israel has been “infected by the seeds of fascism”.
This is not just an internal political matter in Israel. Lieberman with tensions rising and another conflict a real possibility with the Palestinians will almost certainly present himself as a “War Minister.” At a time when Prime Minister Netanyahu is doing everything, including expanding illegal settlements, to make the Two State Solution impossible, and ensure even the possibility of talks is out of the question, it is truly frightening he would even think of making some one like Liberman defence minister.
Given the warcrimes committed against the Palestinians in Gaza in 2014, especially against unarmed civilians including women and children, the risks of further atrocities are now at an all time high with Liberman as defence minister.
Next week – Why is the world ignoring this very dangerous threat to peace – the degeneration of Israeli society under a leadership moving from the extreme right to the militaristically neo-Fascist in trying to make its apartheid occupation permanent?
Narges Mohammadi – Extraordinary Human Rights Defender – Iran (See photo)
Without any doubt the person that most impressed me this week was Narges Mohammadi. Her courage seems beyond human. However, just reading about her it is very clear she is all too human which is why her defence of human rights in Iran is all the more extraordinary. Not least because she is in very bad health. Already serving a six years sentence for her human rights work in Tehran’s notorious Evin Prison, she has just been sentenced to a further shocking sixteen years mainly for her courageous work opposing the death penalty.
Next week – Why is the world ignoring and not demanding the immediate release of this wholly innocent and very courageous Human Rights Defender?
Yemen – SaudiArabia Turning Weddings Into Funerals
This week I was utterly devastated by a video of an extended family, uninvolved in politics literally massacred during a wedding celebration by a SaudiArabian airstrike literally out the blue. The family was used to fighter jets flying over on their way to bomb elsewhere and because they had no involvement in the conflict assumed wrongly they were safe. They went public out of a deep sense of injustice.
“We did nothing wrong.”
However, what was even more terrifying about that video is that it highlighted only one of several examples of similar bomb attacks on families in Yemen – innocent families just trying to get on with their lives.
Link to video documentary – ‘Weddings Into Funerals’ here: https://youtu.be/69hBwcHDBCo – Produced by Mwatana
The US and the UK firmly back SaudiArabia’s campaign in Yemen making us complicit. President Obama and Prime Minister Cameron being the most important and intimately involved supporters of this Saudi campaign and therefore have a case to answer. Indeed, that is no idle or mischievous allegation. If you supply weapons in any conflict, and they are used to commit warcrimes – you are complicit!
As war continues in Yemen – the poorest country in the Middle East – all the indications are it will turn into a potentially genocidal famine?
Next week – Why is the world ignoring this video and the considerable evidence of egregious warcrimes Saudi Arabia is implicated, and which the US and the UK appear to be complicit through massive arms supplies, logistic, intelligence support and targeting?
Syria – The Torture Prisons – ‘Holocaust’ within a ‘Holocaust’
Syria and the indiscriminate slaughter of civilians especially by the Assad regime with Russian air support is probably the world’s hell on earth at the moment. But there is one area of indiscriminate and brutal slaughter that in spite of its large-scale and systematic nature is simply not getting attention. This is the use of his prisons by Assad as virtual death camps. Many groups including Amnesty and the UN have reported on this aspect of his forgotten reign of terror. Indeed, as thousands have been tortured to death in those prisons the UN has used the word “extermination”.
Next week – Why is the world ignoring this ‘holocaust’ within a ‘holocaust’?
This week I nailed my colours to the mast on twitter but I don’t think anyone really noticed. I tweeted that if we all became human rights defenders, activists or advocates we would literally have peace and justice in our time. Idealistic? Definitely not – just common sense! Tyranny triumphs as the saying goes when good people remain silent. Unfortunately silence is the default position for too many of us? So to help break the silence or at least give myself a weekly agenda to make even a small impact against that silence, that makes us complicit, I will write up a Review/Agenda once a week – hopefully every week! But would appreciate reaction and support for those featured.
Ronan L Tynan
Ronan L Tynan is an award winning documentary filmmaker and co-founder of Esperanza Productions – http://www.esperanza.ie.