By Jonathan Steele
The EU has been courageous to stick by Iran in the face of Trump. But its stance towards a key human rights review in the breakaway region of Georgia has been pathetically weak
To the great credit of the European Union, its high representative for foreign affairs and security policy, Federica Mogherini, attended the recent inauguration of Iran’s president, Hassan Rouhani. As Donald Trump increases his attacks on the nuclear deal which the US and the EU, along with other leading states, signed in 2015, it took courage for the EU to take part in the ceremonies in Tehran. It was a welcome act of defiance for which the EU has not been given enough recognition.
According to leaks to the US media, Trump is preparing to denounce the deal which his predecessor, Barack Obama, strongly encouraged. He plans to accuse Iran – without any evidence – of violating the deal’s terms. Although he likes to act impulsively and on his own, Trump would no doubt welcome support from Europeans. Mogherini’s courage in showing the EU is not going along with Washington’s line, and by implication the forthcoming fabrications about alleged Iranian violations, is to be applauded.
A pity, then, that on another issue – admittedly of much less international weight than relations with Iran – the EU foreign policy team has turned out to be pathetically weak. It concerns EU policy in its eastern neighbourhood along the Black Sea.
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini listens as Iran’s president delivers a speech after being sworn in before parliament in Tehran earlier this month (AFP)
Some 18 months ago, with the agreement of Helga Schmid, the secretary general of the European External Action Service, an independent expert was asked to conduct a review of human rights in Abkhazia, a breakaway region of Georgia, by Ambassador Herbert Salber, the EU’s special representative for the South Caucasus and the crisis in Georgia.
The chosen expert was Thomas Hammarberg, a Swedish diplomat of great integrity who worked for six years as the Council of Europe commissioner for human rights. The mission was approved by the UN and the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe who are co-chairs with the EU in conducting talks in Geneva on the consequences of the 2008 conflict in Georgia, which led, after Russian military intervention and a short war with Georgian forces, to South Ossetia and Abkhazia declaring independence.
Making it public
It was agreed by all parties that the report would be published, and everyone interviewed for it, whether officials or private citizens, knew it was to be public. Hammarberg teamed up with Magdalena Grono, an expert on the South Caucasus from the International Crisis Group. They made six visits to Abkhazia, each time traveling through Tbilisi, the Georgian capital, where they met Georgian officials.
The agreed approach was what Hammarberg calls “strict status-neutrality”. Without it, no investigation would have been feasible, he says. The report would not take a position on rival claims to Abkhazia, whose declaration of independence has only been recognised by Russia and two other countries. The EU has not recognised the breakaway region. It insists on the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia.
The report’s aim was to investigate the state of human rights in Abkhazia and recommend potential improvements which could be implemented immediately whatever steps may be taken later about ending the conflict. As the report puts it even-handedly: “The view from Tbilisi emphasises Russian aggression, and sees the conflict mainly as Georgian-Russian, and Abkhazia as occupied. Moscow disagrees and points out that the pre-existing Georgian-Abkhaz conflict of the 1990s is at the core of the problem, and it offers to act as a guarantor of security. The view from Sukhumi [the Abkhaz capital] is largely aligned with the Russian version; some in Sukhumi even say there no longer is a conflict as Abkhazia’s status has been resolved thanks to Russian recognition in 2008. While there is broad consensus in Sukhumi that Moscow is a key partner, there is also a concern among some people that Abkhazia may be assimilated into the Russian space.”
Police stand guard before the evacuation of members of the Georgian minority from Abkhazia and South Ossetia from a rundown former hotel in Tbilisi in August 2011 (AFP)
The EU-sponsored study on human rights in Abkhazia is the most comprehensive that any outside body has ever done on the subject. It looked at gender issues, housing discrimination, prison conditions, language teaching in schools, and restrictions on the freedom of movement of people across the border into Georgia proper, a problem which particularly affects the Georgian minority in the Gali district of Abkhazia, many of whom fled to Georgia during the 2008 war and have since returned.
Some improvements occurred during the team’s work. An ombudsman was appointed, who seemed to work independently of the authorities. Some regression also happened. A law banning abortion except in a few circumstances was passed.
‘The broke their promise’
The report’s first draft was given to the EU early this year. They circulated it to the rival sides in Tbilisi, Sukhumi and Moscow. The Georgian Foreign Ministry angrily condemned the status-neutral approach. Officials wanted every mention of Abkhazia to be “Abkhazia, Georgia”, and the treatment of Georgians to be described as “genocide”. They objected to discussion of de facto Abkhaz legislation on various aspects of human rights in Abkhazia, claiming this gave an air of legality to an occupation.
According to Hammarberg, the Georgian foreign ministry lobbied hard against the report. Taking advantage of the generally hostile current Western attitude to Russia, they mobilised Poland and the Baltic states to press for the report’s suppression.
Helga Schmid, secretary general of the external action service, who was taking the lead in the EU on the issue, decided not to publish the report but shelve it for use as “an internal working document”. Schmid was unavailable for comment but Oliver Dajic, her political assistant, acknowledged in an email to Middle East Eye that the primary goal of the study was “to raise awareness regarding human rights in Abkhazia”. He declined to give reasons why Schmid refused to make the report public.
It looks like a case of inconsistency and cowardice. “What is interesting is that they back off under pressure, even from an EU non-member state. It’s not a good sign. They broke their promise,” Hammarberg told MEE.
“The foreign ministry in Tbilisi is a hangover from the time of [former president] Mikheil Saakashvili. The current president has suggested he wants to review the whole Abkhazia issue and provoke a debate. The foreign ministry people are extremists. Perhaps they thought they would lose power,” he added.
Ironically, the suppressed report’s biggest point of criticism concerns the fate of the Georgian returnees to the Gali district of Abkhazia. Their severe problems in schools, housing, the return of seized property, and identity papers were comprehensively itemised in the report. But getting this into the public domain seems to have mattered less to the Georgian foreign ministry, and the EU external action service, than well-rehearsed arguments over the origins of the war and the status of the breakaway territories.
Refusing to be silenced, Hammarberg and Grono have updated their report and published it on the website of Sweden’s Olof Palme International Centre, where Hammarberg was for time secretary general.
A view of the Security Council Chamber as Zeid Ra’ad Al-Hussein (shown on screen), UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, addresses via video conference the Council’s open debate on the victims of attacks and abuses on ethnic or religious grounds in the Middle East on 27 March 2015 in New York. (UN photo)
By Tamar Pileggi
State Department says ‘counterproductive’ Human Rights Council’s measure will not facilitate Israeli-Palestinian peace
The Trump administration is reportedly urging the UN’s Human Rights Council not to publish its blacklist of international companies operating in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, saying the move was “counterproductive” and would not advance the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
Last year, the UN body unanimously voted to compile a database of all business enterprises that have enabled or profited from the growth of Israeli settlements in areas Palestinians see as part of their future state.
The proposal, put forward by the Palestinian Authority and Arab states in 2016, included a condemnation of settlements and called on companies not to do business with Israeli settlements.
According to a Tuesday report in the Washington Post, UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein intends to publish the list by the end of 2017, despite opposition from the US and Israel.
“The United States has been adamantly opposed to this resolution from the start,” said State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert, according to reports. “These types of resolutions are counterproductive and do nothing to advance Israeli-Palestinian issues.”
Nauert said a joint US-Israel effort to stop funding for work related to the database had been unsuccessful.
“We have made clear our opposition regarding the creation of a database of businesses operating in Israeli settlements in the occupied territories, and we have not participated and will not participate in its creation or contribute to its content,” she said.
United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley walks with Israeli Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon as they arrive for a meeting with President Reuven Rivlin at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem, June 7, 2017. Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Hussein, a Jordanian diplomat spearheading the initiative, had already agreed to postpone publishing the list once this year, in part due to US pressure, the report said. He has reached out to member states for input before September 1.
American companies on the list include Caterpillar, TripAdvisor, Priceline.com, Airbnb and others, The Post reported, citing those familiar with the database.
On Monday, Israel’s UN ambassador Danny Danon slammed the Geneva-based council, claiming the creation of a blacklist amounted to anti-Semitism.
“This shameful step is an expression of modern anti-Semitism and reminds us of dark periods in history,” Danon’s office said in a statement. “Instead of focusing on the terrible humanitarian problems plaguing the globe, the Human Rights Commissioner is seeking to harm Israel, and in doing so has become the world’s most senior BDS activist.”
The statement called on the UN and the international community to reject the “dangerous” and “anti-Israel” initiative.
In June, the US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, condemned the blacklist as “the latest in this long line of shameful actions” taken by the UNHRC.
“Blacklisting companies without even looking at their employment practices or their contributions to local empowerment, but rather based entirely on their location in areas of conflict is contrary to the laws of international trade and to any reasonable definition of human rights,” she said in a speech in Geneva. “It is an attempt to provide an international stamp of approval to the anti-Semitic BDS movement. It must be rejected.”
Haley went on to warn at the time that the US could withdraw from the 47-member body unless it reformed, ending its built-in procedural mechanism to condemn Israel, and banning notorious human rights violators from serving on the council.
Since 2007, Israel has been the only country whose alleged human rights abuses are regularly discussed in the framework of a single permanent item on the Human Rights Council’s agenda.
Albert Einstein 1938 ALS Regarding Hitler. Photo credit: Nate D. Sanders Auctions (http://natedsanders.com/Albert_Einstein_1938_ALS_Regarding_Hitler_______Ho-LOT46972.aspx)
By Jewish News Reporter
Nobel Prize winning physicist warned against the ‘naive’ approach towards Germany from the then British PM
A letter from Albert Einstein to his best friend in which he criticises Neville Chamberlain’s appeasement of Nazi Germany is to be sold at auction.
One of a series of letters from the Nobel Prize winning physicist to Michele Besso in 1938, it outlines how Einstein thought Chamberlain – then British prime minister – was “naïve” to think Hitler would turn his attentions away from the UK.
Due to be sold by Los Angeles-based Nate D. Sanders Auctions, its covers Einstein’s reactions to world news in the days after Chamberlain returned from Germany with an undertaking from Hitler not to attack, declaring “peace in our time”.
To Besso, who together with Einstein was helping save European Jews, the genius wrote: “You have confidence in the British and even Chamberlain? O sancta simplicitas …!” The Latin phrase translates as ‘Oh holy innocence’ or ‘naiveté.
Of Churchill’s predecessor, who had just signed the Munich Agreement allowing Nazi Germany to annex Czechoslovakia, Einstein wrote: “Hoping that Hitler might let off steam by attacking Russia, he sacrifices Eastern Europe. But we will come to see once more that shrewdness does not win in the long term.”
The man whose equations helped pave the way for the atomic bomb then goes on to pen a withering rebuke of Chamberlain’s actions, noting the geopolitical consequences of the doomed policy of appeasement.
“In France, he pushed the Left into a corner and, in France as well, helped give power to those people whose motto is ‘Better Hitler than the Reds,’ wrote Einstein.
“The extermination policy against Spain already showed this clearly. Now he saved Hitler in the nick of time by crowning himself with the wreath of love of peace and inducing France to betray the Czechs.
“He did all this in such a clever way that he deceived most people, even you. His only fear, which spurred him on to his humiliating flights, was the worry that Hitler might lose ground. I do not have any hope left for the future of Europe.”
The starting bid for the letter on Thursday is $25,000, with other letters – including one on his divorce and one about his son’s mental health – also up for grabs.
Read also: Neville Chamberlain was not an “APPEASER!”
By Mike King
Enter the word “appeasement” into a Google Search browser, and then click on “Images”. You will see image after image after image of UK Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, whose very name is synonymous with “appeasement” and weakness in the face of a bully.
As the tiresome cliched story goes, Chamberlain “appeased” Hitler at the Munich Conference (September 1938) by handing over Czechoslovakia to his domination. War was thus averted, but Hitler was now emboldened by Chamberlain’s “appeasement.”
That’s the official moronic fairy tale; a fable that has been recently resurrected and repeated to wrongly describe the CIA’s manufactured crisis in Ukraine and the dangers of “appeasing” Putin.
NOW, ONCE AGAIN, THE REAL STORY!
Blah Blah Blah….Blah Blah Blah….Blah Blah Blah….
At the conclusion of World War I, the victorious allies rewrote the map of Central & Eastern Europe. The artificial state of “Czechoslovakia” was pieced together in 1918, combining Czechs, Germans & Slovaks under the new state. Additional minorities of Romanians, Hungarians, and Poles were also forced to live under this ‘Frankenstein’ state. The German portion (formerly part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire) was a long strip of northern territory known as “Sudetenland.”
The Globalists created a ‘Frankenstein” state of many different ethnic groups
During the mid 1930’s, a closet Communist named Edvard Benes is President of Czechosolvakia. Under his regime, Germans endure brutal attacks and oppression at the hands of Marxists. The 3,500,000 Sudetenland Germans wish to join their German brothers under Hitler’s Reich, but are denied the right of self determination by the pro Stalinist Benes government.
Benes the Bolshevik! Right: with Stalin and friends in 1945.
During this time, Jewish & Globalist warmongers in Great Britain are maneuvering Britain into a war against Germany. The Czechoslovakia-Sudetenland controversy is the perfect “hot spot” to get the war started. In an attempt to force Hitler’s hand, Czech Marxists intensify their abuse of the helpless Germans.
New York: 1933: Madison Square Garden demo// 1933: Judea Declares War on Germany!
Hitler is pushed to the brink by the deliberate abuse of the Sudetenland Germans. He threatens to liberate the Sudetenland by force, a move that could lead to war with Britain, France, and the USSR. In an 11th hour attempt to avoid war, Hitler invites three European leaders for a conference in Munich.
Hitler: “I want peace with England!”
The Munich Conference is attended by four European heads of State. Hitler, Mussolini of Italy, Daladier of France, and Chamberlain of Britain meet in good faith for the purpose of resolving the crisis triggered by the artificial gangster State of Czechoslovakia.
The four leaders meet.// The talks go smoothly.
Hitler and Chamberlain keep the peace!
The parties agree that the Sudetenland should be united with Germany, and that the Slovaks should have their own State.
The fake Czechoslovakian state is dissolved and Germany later establishes autonomous protectorates over what remains (Bohemia and Moravia). Without a shot being fired, Germans are welcomed into the Reich, while ethnic Czechs and Slovaks also get their own states. Even the minority Poles and Hungarians then join their respective father nations. The Munich Agreement is a win-win-win-win–win for all 5 of Czechoslovakia’s ethnic groups!
The rat Benes soon exiles himself in London, where he resumes plotting with the Jewish warmongers who welcome him with open arms.
Hitler and Chamberlain part on friendly terms.// The Munich Agreement: A fair deal for ALL parties!
Upon his return to Britain, Chamberlain is greeted by jubilant crowds. He applauds the Munich Agreement as “peace in our time”. All throughout Europe, Chamberlain is praised for his calm diplomacy.
Chamberlain is greeted warmly by peace loving Brits. // Cartoon depicts Chamberlain skillfully moving the world away from war, and towards peace
Meanwhile, the degenerate, drunken, cigar chomping Winston Churchill denounces Neville Chamberlain, “You were given the choice between war and dishonor. You chose dishonor and you will have war.” Churchill said.
British historian David Irving later discovered that the warmongering Czech government had been secretly funneling money to the warmongering Churchill, who was plotting to replace Chamberlain.
It was Churchill and his Jewish bosses who wanted war, not Hitler! // Mr. and Mrs. Churchill get chummy with the rat Commie Benes.
Upon his triumphal visit to the liberated German Sudetenland, Hitler receives a hero’s welcome.
Free at last! // Tears of joy.
In the summer of 1939, the Globalist warmongers manipulate Poland (which also holds an oppressed German minority captive) into provoking Hitler, exactly as Czechoslovakia had done in 1938. Once again, Hitler calls for an emergency conference.
But by this time around, poor Neville Chamberlain’s hands have been tied by the powerful pro war forces in Britain. Less than 1 week before the conflict erupts, Chamberlain had been manuevered into signing a military defense pact with Poland. There will be no peace talks!
Salvador Dali’s painting, “The Enigma of Hitler” depicts a desolate landscape, and telephone dripping tears as Chamberlain’s trademark umbrella hangs from the branch. The painting signifies how Hitler’s desperate phone calls to England were ignored.
By September 1 of 1939, the killing of Germans at the hands of Polish-Jewish Communist militias becomes so widespread that Hitler is forced to invade. Britain and France immediately declare war upon Germany. The gloating Churchill boasts of how his self fulfilling-prophecy regarding the danger of “appeasement” has come to pass.
Thus was born the FABLE of Neville Chamberlain’s “appeasement.”
Germany invaded Poland to liberate the Germans living under Polish-Jewish oppression. // The warmongers finally get their war!
Photo: Flickr, (File photo).
August 14, 2017
Maputo — Mozambique’s Institute of Agricultural Research (IIAM) is harvesting its first genetically modified maize (GM maize), which has been grown in a test field of Chókwè research station in the southern province of Gaza.
According to the daily paper “Diario de Mocambique” the aim is assist the productive sector with drought resistant and insect tolerant seeds should the results be positive.
The tests are taking place in an area of about 0.25 hectares, using 14 varieties of GM maize.
Pests are one of the main factors that cyclically contribute to low production and productivity of maize and one of the major concerns for both domestic and peasant farmers, particularly for those with limited financial resources to buy pesticides.
In the second trial, which is expected to be sown later this year, drought varieties of maize will be tested. Drought resistant is one of the key factors for the success of maize production in Mozambique, due to impact of climate change that is already being felt in the country and the whole Southern Africa region, with a huge negative impact for the agricultural sector.
Research is under the aegis of IIAM, a governmental institution responsible for the Water Efficient Maize for Africa (WEMA) project, which includes Mozambique, Tanzania, South Africa, Kenya and Uganda through their own agricultural research institutes.
“In this first phase we did tests to evaluate resistance to insects and we have been monitoring them over the last months, from the sowing done in February until now”, said Pedro Fato, a maize researcher at IIAM, cited by the Diario de Mocambique.
“Today (7 August), we are about to start harvesting for preliminary analyzes, that is part of WEMA research process implemented by IIAM. We will investigate the yield part of the crop and evaluate to what extent the insect resistance gene works under Mozambican conditions, “he explained.
IIAM Director General, Olga Fafetine, pointed out that the aim “by the end the country will have modified maize seeds in a way that favors the desired traits for both pest resistance and drought tolerance”.
Testing of genetically modified maize from the United States is part of WEMA, an agricultural research project to develop new varieties for drought tolerance and insect resistance.
Mozambique already consumes genetically modified products, imported from countries such as Brazil and South Africa, without any negative impact on both human health and environment, according to the national authorities working on biosafety.
Problem – Reaction – Solution
Weather modification through chemtrails – Drought – Drought resistant GMO crops
Jewish men walk along the street in Stamford Hill Rob Stothard/Getty Images
By Adam Withnall and Dina Rickman, September 1, 2015