country:afghanistan

  • Is Germany facing a mental health crisis among refugees and migrants?

    Whenever a migrant or refugee is the perpetrator of a violent crime, questions asked seem to revolve around their background and whether being a migrant has somehow predisposed them to commit the crime.

    What can mental health professionals add to the debate?

    In the German city of Freiburg, a student was gang-raped by several men, many of them of Syrian origin, spurring once again a debate in German society over a possible predisposition of migrants to committing violent acts.

    For health professionals, such acts require a different approach - one that is focused on the psychological risks of migrant journeys.

    Professor Dr. Thomas Elbert, a research professor in neuropsychology at the University of Konstanz, says that a mental health crisis among migrants is looming. As one of the authors of a new study for the Leopoldina (The German National Academy of Science), he calls for immediate action. “This [kind of violent incident] is something we have predicted.“

    Elbert warns that violent acts will occur more frequently if nothing is done to create conditions where, “young men in particular, but in general people who are seeking protection here in Germany, have the opportunity to acquire social status.”

    For Elbert, social status is key. Social status is the thing which stops many more people from committing crimes like rape or murder, he says. The loss of social status, which happens when you are sent to prison and excluded from society, is more of a barrier to crime than the actual punishment. But if you have nothing to lose then it is much easier to graduate to crime.

    That is not to say that refugees or migrants are naturally predisposed to commit such crimes because of their background or ethnicity, he adds.

    Risk factors, stress

    However, a greater proportion of migrants are exposed to risk factors which increase the likelihood of committing crimes, Elbert explains. This is due to the reasons which led them to flee or what they experienced on the road to Europe. People who have made it to Europe are often laboring under huge amounts of stress. “They feel under permanent threat,” he says.

    “We have asked refugees who have crossed the Sahara desert, how did you get here? And they told us: ’We had to commit crimes; we were attacked, people robbed us, so we also had to start attacking.’” From his research, Elbert found that out of 10 boys who leave West Africa, only two make it to the Mediterranean coast and only one actually crosses to Europe. He thinks that these people, in spite of their traumas, can be integrated successfully. They have, after all, already learnt to survive, but their traumas need to be treated, a key point of his study “Traumatized refugees –immediate response required.”

    Research conducted for the study has found that as many as half of migrants and refugees could have psychiatric problems or post-traumatic stress. The effects of these traumas can be worse for society in men than in women. And the majority of the migrants who arrived in 2015 were young men.

    Migrants abandoned in the Sahara desert Photo Sylla Ibrahima Sory


    Elbert found that one-third of men who experience a violent upbringing will turn to crime, whereas only one in 20 or 50 women will do so. However, women who have undergone trauma might be more prone to suicide or self-harm. All these things will cost society huge amounts of money – hence the call for therapy and more intensive screening.

    Treating #trauma

    Virginia Edwards-Menz is a registered nurse with 30 years experience working in mental health and more than 13 years counseling refugees and migrants on a volunteer basis near Freiburg.

    She agrees with a recent study by the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg which found that at least one in three people coming from Syria are laboring under some kind of mental health issue. However, the German system is not equipped to invest the amount of time needed to really assess each individual’s psychiatric needs, she says.


    She points out that most new arrivals are on welfare which means that only the most acute cases are even dealt with. Most social workers have more than 100 people to attend to. There is no way they can even begin to tackle the effects that violence may have had on the refugees. In addition, many refugees are not even aware that they might need that kind of help, says Edwards-Menz.

    Can trauma lead to gang-rape?

    Elbert does not see a correlation between trauma and rape. Rape he thinks is usually caused by problems of socialization and can also be the result of a continual witnessing of violence. “Once you have lost your moral barriers, what is allowed, what is not allowed, then rape is one of your options. We see that in war-like regions where there is no state or monopoly of power. Young men begin to rape. They do so in gangs, to show and test who is the most terrible cruel and dominant guy in the group.”

    Gender, attitude towards women

    Can crimes like the gang-rape in Freiburg be attested to having grown up in a different culture where the role of women is defined much differently than in Western cultures?

    Elbert and Edwards-Menz agree that there is no simple explanation. “It’s not a justification to say we have not learnt that the situation in Germany is maybe different [to the country of origin.]," Elbert says. But he also says that limits of what is OK and not OK “are learnt within a cultural context.” If the moral barriers you grew up with (for instance certain dress codes and behavior) are no longer present, then it can be easy to think that you do not have to respect the person who appears to be flouting the codes you learnt.


    As a volunteer, Edwards-Menz has often come across men from countries like Afghanistan who do adhere to Islamic codes of behavior and believe that European society should change to their way of thinking. She advocates talking to gradually shift mentalities and continually repeating the message of what is acceptable, and what is not in Germany. She notes that quite a lot of them arrive illiterate. This creates a barrier to integration and can also go some way to explaining sometimes entrenched attitudes. With no access to other ways of thinking or being, their opinions can take a long time to shift.

    The government and agencies who work with refugees and migrants are already doing this, she says. The main problem is time and resources, as in enough translators to work with people and enough time to devote to each individual and understand each separate biography. Only then, can these traumas really be overcome and people integrated successfully.

    Full assessment necessary

    Both experts agree that German society as a whole is facing a problem and that the solution cannot be to deport people and thereby push the problem onto another society.

    What both experts want is a proper assessment of the extent of the problem so that the trauma that many people are carrying can be digested. The problem is that this involves a long process and no simple answers, but it is only that which will aid better integration in the future.

    http://www.infomigrants.net/en/post/13164/is-germany-facing-a-mental-health-crisis-among-refugees-and-migrants
    #Allemagne #santé_mentale #réfugiés #asile #migrations #crime #criminalité #stress #traumatisme #viol #statut_social


  • US Wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan Killed 500,000 People - News From Antiwar.com
    https://news.antiwar.com/2018/11/08/us-wars-in-iraq-afghanistan-and-pakistan-killed-500000-people

    Brown University has released a new study on the cost in lives of America’s Post-9/11 Wars, in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. The study estimates between 480,000 and 507,000 people were killed in the course of the three conflicts.

    This includes combatant deaths and civilian deaths in fighting and war violence. Civilians make up over half of the roughly 500,000 killed, with both opposition fighters and US-backed foreign military forces each sustaining in excess of 100,000 deaths as well.

    This is admittedly a dramatic under-report of people killed in the wars, as it only attempts to calculate those killed directly in war violence, and not the massive number of others civilians who died from infrastructure damage or other indirect results of the wars. The list also excludes the US war in Syria, which itself stakes claims to another 500,000 killed since 2011.

    #victimes_civiles #États-unis #agressions #impunité


  • US to Extract Minerals From Afghanistan to ‘Defray Cost of US Assistance’

    The U.S. military has had its eyes on Afghan mineral deposits for some time. A 2007 Pentagon memo that the New York Times quoted in a 2010 article says that Afghanistan could be the “Saudi Arabia of lithium.”

    https://www.mintpressnews.com/us-to-extract-minerals-from-afghanistan-to-defray-cost-of-us-assistance/232333

    #extractivisme #Afghanistan #USA #Etats-Unis #mines #lithium
    ping @albertocampiphoto @daphne

    Quelle belle blague! “US assistance”, comme dit @isskein sur FB: “Bastards”


  • La menace Black Bloc plane sur les cérémonies du #11_Novembre - Le Parisien
    http://www.leparisien.fr/faits-divers/la-menace-black-bloc-plane-sur-les-ceremonies-du-11-novembre-09-11-2018-7

    Pour ce week-end, près de #10000_policiers ont été mobilisés sur l’ensemble du dispositif, samedi et dimanche, à la fois pour le Forum de la paix qui se tiendra à la Villette, ainsi que pour les commémorations proprement dites. Le concert donné par l’orchestre de Radio France à la Philharmonie de Paris samedi soir devant 1 600 invités et à la même heure le dîner des chefs d’État au musée d’Orsay sont également des événements sensibles et évoqués dans la note des services de renseignement parisiens.

    Une menace dans la menace. Alors que 72 chefs d’État et 98 délégations étrangères sont attendus dimanche pour les commémorations du 11 Novembre, un rassemblement contre la venue de Donald Trump a été autorisé le même jour place de la République à Paris, à 14 heures, où sont attendues « plusieurs milliers de personnes », selon la préfecture de police (PP), qui dit se préparer à « un risque de débordements dû à la création attendue d’#un_Black_Bloc
    #lol

    • Trump, Poutine : fauteurs de guerre, oui, mais à la rigueur, ils représentent des Etats ayant participé à la Première guerre mondiale. Mais Netanyahu ? Non seulement israel n’existait pas, mais c’est le mandat britannique sur la #Palestine qui est né du dépeçage de l’Empire ottoman après la guerre...

      Trump, Poutine, Netanyahu, Erdogan… fauteurs de guerre - Macron complice
      Solidaires, le
      https://solidaires.org/Trump-Poutine-Netanyahu-Erdogan-fauteurs-de-guerre-Macron-complice-13743

      Macron a choisi de commémorer le centenaire de la fin de la première guerre mondiale avec les plus grands fauteurs de guerre d’aujourd’hui. Pourtant, le recul de cent ans d’histoire, le travail des historien-nes et des militant-es sur la boucherie qui a fait 18,6 millions de morts et des millions de blessé-es, dévasté des pays entiers, et sur les raisons pour lesquelles les grandes puissances ont décidé de se lancer dans l’aventure devraient nous permettre d’en tirer les leçons. Le contexte mondial actuel de guerre économique généralisée, de militarisation accrue, de replis nationalistes… renforce d’autant l’importance de ce travail de mémoire et réflexion. Ce n’est pas ce que Macron a choisi.

      Donald Trump continue une guerre engagée par les Etats-Unis en Irak en 1990, puis en Afghanistan et qui contribue depuis près de 30 ans à déstabiliser toute la région, mettant les populations civiles dans l’insécurité la plus totale. Il soutient l’Arabie Saoudite qui mène une guerre au Yémen dont les principales victimes sont les populations civiles confrontées à la famine et aux problèmes de santé. Il mobilise l’armée à la frontière mexicaine contre les migrant-es qu’il qualifie de "criminel-les".

      Vladimir Poutine, après avoir fait sa guerre « intérieure » en Tchétchénie et placé à sa tête Ramzan Kadyrov, un dictateur criminel parmi les plus brutaux, est directement impliqué au côté du tyran Bachar El Assad dans la guerre en Syrie, qui a fait des centaines de milliers de victimes civiles. Après avoir annexé la Crimée par la force en 2014, il continue à mener des actions de guerre en Ukraine.

      Benjamin Netanyahu continue sa guerre contre des Palestinien-nes désarmé-es en particulier à Gaza, sa politique de colonisation des territoires palestiniens et nie leurs droits y compris pour ceux et celles qui ont la nationalité israélienne.

      Recep Tayyip Erdogan mène une guerre intérieure et en Syrie contre les populations kurdes, tout en réprimant sauvagement sa population tout entière.

      Nous n’oublions pas non plus que la France accroit son budget militaire au détriment des besoins sociaux, mène des opérations militaires dans plusieurs pays et vend des armes elle aussi aux dictateurs d’Arabie Saoudite, au Maréchal Al Sissi en Egypte qui les utilise contre son peuple…

      Alors que viennent-ils faire ici ? Ils sont là pour signifier qu’avec eux il y aura toujours une guerre en cours, qu’ils vont continuer leurs politiques dominatrices et coloniales, leurs ventes d’armes pour le plus grand profit des lobbys militaro-industriels.

      Alors nous manifesterons*, nous serons là pour leur dire : nous ne voulons ni guerre, ni état de guerre. C’est le moins que l’on puisse faire en souvenir des millions de morts de 14-18 et pour tous ceux et celles qui veulent, ici ou ailleurs, vivre libres et en paix aujourd’hui.

      * Une manifestation est prévue à Paris à partir de 14h00 au départ de la Place de la République


  • Walid Pharès, le John Bolton’s boy par excellence ou les dérives mortifères de l’irrédentisme maronite – Salimsellami’s Blog
    https://salimsellami.wordpress.com/2018/11/07/walid-phares-le-john-boltons-boy-par-excellence-ou-les-deriv

    Une grande honorabilité bardée d’expertise. Des postes prestigieux dans la haute administration américaine républicaine : La vitrine d’exposition est parfaite, mais sous le vernis de la respectabilité, une façade lézardée, un personnage gangréné.

    Contrairement à ce que suggère son nom patronymique en arabe, Walid Pharès n’est pas le fils d’un preux chevalier, mais plutôt le parfait exemple d’un dévoiement par sectarisme. Libanais d’origine, naturalisé américain, il est en fait « UN ISRAELIEN d’ORIGINE LIBANAISE », comme l’a très justement qualifié le quotidien libanais « Al Akhbar ».

    « La propulsion de Walid Pharès au poste de conseiller du président Donald Trump ne constitue pas, loin s’en faut, une reconnaissance du savoir faire libanais encore moins un succès diplomatique pour le Liban, mais plutôt une percée majeure de la stratégie israélienne par la promotion d’un des affidés libanais de l’État Hébreu dans le cercle décisionnaire du pouvoir à Washington.(…) Preuve est faite qu’il est plus aisé pour les Forces Libanaises (milices chrétienens) de décrocher un poste regalien à Washington qu’à Beyrouth », poursuit Al Akhbar dont le portrait de l’ancien milicien se trouve sur ce lien pour le lectorat arabophone.

    http://www.al-akhbar.com/node/268049

    UN ISOLATIONNISTE VINDICATIF
    La biographie en langue française de cet isolationniste vindicatif est lisse.
    Sa biographie en langue anglaise, éditée par le site Mother Jones, est infiniment plus caustique et toxique.
    Sur ce lien : http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2011/10/walid-phares-mitt-romney-lebanese-forces

    Natif de la localité de Ghouma, district de Batroun, dans le Nord Liban, en 1957, Walid Pharès a effectué une scolarité éclectique à l’Université Saint Joseph des Pères Jésuites et à l’Université Libanaise à Beyrouth, avant de décrocher, en 1981, à 24 ans un Master en Droit International à l’Université Jean Moulin LYON III, une structure où a longtemps professé une figure de proue de l’extrême droite française Bruno Gollnisch, passé à la postérité pour avoir matraqué des journalistes avec son parapluie.

    Précoce, il publie à 22 ans, en 1979, son premier ouvrage « At Taadoudiya Fi Loubnane », « le pluralisme au Liban ». Edité par l’Université du Saint Esprit de Kaslick, le fief du militantisme des moines maronites lors la guerre civile libanaise sous le magistère du Père Charbel Kassis, ce livre paru quatre ans après le déclenchement de la guerre civile, reprend en les popularisant les thèmes des milices chrétiennes sur la spécificité chrétienne, particulièrement maronite, dans le Monde arabe.

    Considérant qu’il existe au Liban deux cultures distinctes, la culture chrétienne par essence démocratique et la culture islamo-arabe qui l’est moins ou pas du tout, l’idéologue en herbe reprend à son compte en l’amplifiant le thème « du choc des civilisations », théorisé par l’universitaire américain Samuel Huttington. Il préconise en conséquence la ségrégation entre groupes libanais et prône le développement séparé, s’inspirant de thèses de la « white supremacy », si courantes dans certains milieux du Sud des États-Unis.

    LE CORPUS IDÉOLOGIQUE DE CE SOLDAT DE LA GUERRE FROIDE
    En 1981, l’année qui précède l’invasion israélienne du Liban, il fonde une publication « La voix de l’Orient » pour poulariser ses idées et adhère au « Comité des Chrétiens du Moyen Orient » (MECHRIC), et trois ans plus tard, à l’ Union Sociale Démocratique Chrétienne (USDC). Une démarche destinée à se doter, via ce gropuscule, d’ un vernis social démocrate chrétien, afin d’atténuer quelque peu les aspérités de son personnage belliqueux animé de surcroît d’une volonté de croisade.

    Prolixe, il récidive en 1981 en publiant Hiwar Dimucrati (Le dialogue démocratique), dans une maison d’édition libanaise Dar Al Mashreq Press, conviant ses compatriotes de confession musulmane au dialogue. Une proposition de pure forme, destinée à la galerie en vue de bonifier l’image des milices chrétiennes, discréditées par leurs massacres successifs. Son idole, Bachir Gemayel dont il fut un proche collaborateur, ayant décrété qu’il existait « un peuple de trop » au Moyen orient, en pointant du doigt les Palestiniens, avait initié la première guerre d’épuration ethnique de l’époque contemporaine en ordonnant les massacres de la Quarantaine, janvier 1976, Tall El Zatar, en juillet 1976, enfin Sabra Chatila, septembre 1982 que son assassinat suscita par réflexe pavlovien.

    Sous l’effet du matraquage idéologique, ses frères d’armes miliciens chrétiens ignoreront d’ailleurs allégrement, l’année suivante, cette invitaiton au dialogue envers les musulmans, s’en donnant à cœur joie, au mépris de la tradition chrétienne de commisération, aux massacres des camps de réfugiés palestiniens de Sabra Chatila, dans la banlieue est de Beyrouth, en 1982, sous la supervision israélienne.

    Pour aller plus loin sur ce sujet :

    http://www.madaniya.info/2017/09/15/malediction-de-sabra-chatila-35-ans-apres

    Celui qui avait gouverné par l’épée périra par l’épée, dynamité dans son fief d’Achrafieh, le secteur chrétien de Beyrouth Est, à la veille de son entrée en fonction. Farouchement islamophobe et araphobe, épris d’Occident, son idéologie xénophobe et populiste irriguera naturellement la pensée de ses disciples qui en seront les apôtres sur la scène internationale :

    « Le Liban ne fait partie du Monde arabe. Le Liban est une civilisation et n’a aucun apport avec le tiers monde. Veuillez bien marquer dans vos démarches que nous n’appartenons pas au Tiers monde. Sortons de ce monde d’arriérés. Rallions le monde européen et le Monde libre de l’Amérique », lancera-t-il à ses subordonnés à peine élu président.

    Sur la pensée de Bachir Gemayel et ses méfaits :
    http://www.madaniya.info/2017/09/05/sabra-chatila-operation-salami-1-2

    http://www.madaniya.info/2017/09/10/sabra-chatila-operation-salami-2-2

    Walid Pharès appliquera à la lettre ses enseignements. C’est ainsi qu’en 1986, l’année où le Liban vivait une spirale infernale de prise d’otages occidentaux, le graphomane publie, dans le droit fil de la pensée de son idole, un opus révélant l’objet de sa fixation. Non son oeuvre majeure mais le sujet de sa vindicte publique : Al Thawra al Islamiya al Khumaynia (La Révolution de Khomeiny – Dar Al Machreq Press).

    Pour ce milicien chrétien, l’Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeiny avait eu le triple tort d’évincer le Chah d’Iran, gendarme du Golfe pour le compte de l’OTAN, grand bailleur de fonds des formations paramilitaires chrétiennes libanaises, et surtout grand allié d’Israël, parrain de ses camarades de combat.

    Thème gratifiant s’il en est en ce qu’il diabolisait la République Islamique d’Iran et exonérait de leurs turpitudes les pays occidentaux : la France de son satut de « co belligérant de l’Irak » contre l’Iran (1979-1989) et le double jeu américain à l’égard des deux belligérants, illustré par le scandale de l’Irangate et les promesses d’assistance faites simultanément à Saddam Hussein par Donald Rumsefd en personne, à l’époque secrétaire général de la Mlaison Blanche, sous la présidence Ronald Reagan et futur ministre de la défense sous présidence George Bush jr, artisan de l’invasion américaine de l’Irak, en 2003.

    Putchiste dans l’âme, nulllement légaliste, il trempera dans la conjuration visant à évincer de la présidence des Forces Libanaises, les deux successeurs de Bachir Gemayel : son Frère et successeur Amine ainsi que son ancien lieutement Elie Hobeika. Il en sera gratifié en retour d’un siège au commandement de la formation milicienne sous la présidence de Samir Geagea.

    Inconsolable de la perte de Bachir Gemayel, il quitte les milices chrétiennes en 1989 pour rallier le général Michel Aoun lors de la guerre fratricide inter chrétienne. Il demeurera fidèle jusqu’à la chute du chef du gouvernement intérimaire libanais, le 13 octobre 1990. Placé sur une liste des opposants les plus recherchés du Liban, il s’exile en même temps que son deuxième mentor. Il fuit le Liban, via Israël et s’établit aux États-Unis, obtenant sans retard la nationalité américaine.

    Des mésaventures des milices chrétiennes libanaises, il en tirera deux ouvrages relatant les avatars de la guerre inter-factionnelle inter-chrétienne libanaise : « Lebanese Christian Nationalism : The rise and fall of an ethnic resistance (L. Rienner Published 1995) et « The Nationalist claim and the Lebanese Christian resistance : an ethnic case study ».

    À l’heure de la mondialisation, ce chrétien issu d’une société libanaise pluriconfessionnelle prônera, non le brassage culturel et le métissage humain, mais la ségrégation, la séparation, la grande muraille de démarcation, à l’exemple du Mur d’Apartheid dressé par ses amis israéliens en Cisjordanie. Le ghetto en somme.

    Mais, faille capitale de son argumentaire, ce fervent admirateur de l’Occident occultera le fait majeur de l’histoire contemporaine, le fait que ses idoles, -l’Amérique suprématiste et puritaine et l’Europe chrétienne,- auront été les principaux fossoyeurs de la cause des chrétiens arabes, maronites ou non : De la création d’Israël, en 1948, provoquant l’exode des Palestiniens chrétiens vers la Californie, à l’expédition franco anglo israélienne contre l’Egypte, en 1956, entraînant l’exode des chrétiens égyptiens vers l’Europe et l’Amérique du Nord, à la guerre civile libanaise (1975-1990), à l’invasion américaine de l’Irak, à la guerre de Syrie, 2011, vidant quasiment le Moyen Orient de sa population chrétienne.

    Pour aller plus loin sur ce thème :
    https://www.renenaba.com/france-vatican-les-deux-francois-et-la-chretiente-d-orient

    LE PARCOURS AMÉRICAIN
    Mariée à une américaine, il atterit en Floride, le fief des anticastristes cubains, où il enseignera à l’Université Atlantique de Floride (1993-2004), qu’il quittera au lendemain de l’invasion américaine de l’Irak pour présider the « Global Policy Institute ».
    Collaborateur du « Centre Ariel de Recherches Politiques » de Jerusalem, il se livrera, en tandem avec le lobby juif américain, à un actif lobbying anti syrien en vue de faire adopter par le Congrès américain la « Syrian Accountability Act » et de criminaliser le Hezbollah libanais, via une disposition législative similaire le « Hezbollah accountabilty Act ». Via son réseau israélien, il fait parvenir aux dirigeants israéliens un vade mecum pour une nouvelle gouvernance du sud Liban à la suite de la déconfiture de leurs supplétifs libanais dans la zone frontalière libano-israélienne ; une zone à forte majorité chiite, qui deviendra par la suite le fief du Hezbollah.

    Pour aller plus loin sur ce sujet :

    https://www.renenaba.com/sous-la-syrie-le-hezbollah

    Taiseux pendant pendant les cinq premières années de l’occupation américaine de l’Irak, alors que l’armée américaine était en butte à la guerilla anti américaine tant djihadiste que baasiste, Walid Pharès retrouvera l’inspiration en 2007, -l’année qui a suivi la riposte balistique victorieuse du Hezbollah contre Israël de 2006-, pour commettre un ouvrage intitulé « The War of Ideas : Djihadisme against Democracy » (Palgrave Mac Millan).

    Mais, en bon soldat de la guerre froide, il s’attaquera aux combattants islamistes, les terroristes islamiques, ses semblables musulmans du temps où il était milicien chrétien, de surcroit « idiots utiles » de la stratégie atlantiste dans la fragmentation du Monde arabe. Amnésique, il s’abstiendra de dénoncer la connivence des pétromonarchies dans le financement du terrrorisme islamique, de même que la complaisance des États-Unis à l’égard de l’islamisme politique et de son instrumentalisation en Afghanistan et ailleurs dans une guerre de détournement du champ de bataille de la Palestine.

    Pour aller plus loin sur ce sujet :
    https://www.renenaba.com/de-l-instrumentalisation-de-l-islam-comme-arme-de-combat-politique

    Sa qualité de correspondant du Centre israélien Ariel renforce sa crédibilité dans les milieux néo conservateurs américains et le propulse au sein du cercle dirigeant du parti conservateur. Il sera ainsi tour à tour conseiller du candidat Mitt Romney pour les présidentielles américaines de 2008, puis conseiller du président Donald Trump pour le Moyen Orient et le terrorisme en 2016.
    À l’accession de Donald Trump à la présidence américaine, Walid Pharès, dévient Secrétaire général du Groupe parlementaire transatlantique sur le contre-terrorisme (TAG), une tribune destinée à asseoir son rôle prescripteur, dans un domaine de prédilection des Etats Unis, à détourner en fait l’attention de l’opinion internationale sur le rôle trouble des administrations successives américaines avec le terrorisme islamique.

    La promotion simultanée de l’ultra faucon John Bolton président de l’ultra conservateur « Gatestone Institute » au poste de conseiller de Donald Trump à la Maison Blanche et de Mike Pompeo, l’homme des ténèbres de la CIA, à la tête du Département d’état, a placé Walid Pharès dans un état de lévitation comparable à celui qu’il a vécu à l’élection de son mentor Bachir à la présidence libanaise, avant son trépassement violent. En synchronisation avec Joseph Jibeily, le dirigeant du « Centre des Renseignements du Liban », une officine des Forces Libanaises de Samir Geagea basée à Washington, il mulitiplie ses actions de lobbying au sein du Congrès américain en vue d’obtenir l’exclusion du gouvernement libanais, le Hezbollah, pourtant grand vainqueur des élections législatives libanaises de Mai 2018, et disposant de surcroït, d’une majorité relative à la chambre des députés.

    La propulsion de John Bolton à l’épicentre du pouvoir américain a renforcé la capacité de nuisance de son correspondant libanais, Samir Geagea, dont le discours souverainniste masque en fait une servilité à l’égard des Saoudiens en substitution à sa soumission aux Israéliens durant la guerre civile libanaise (1975-1990), consacrant le chef des « Forces Libanaises », l’un des plus grands criminels de la guerre comme l’un des plus grands mercenaires du personnel politique libanais.

    Sur l’équipée des milices chrétiennes particulièrement Samir Geagea, ce lien :
    https://www.madaniya.info/2017/09/15/malediction-de-sabra-chatila-35-ans-apres

    GATESTONE, JOHN BOLTON, ANNE ELIZABETH MOUTET, ET L’ÉMISSION 28 MINUTES SUR ARTE
    Présidée par le monarchiste iranien Amir Tahiri, ancien directeur du journal Keyhan sous le règne de la dynastie Pahlevi, dans la décennie 1970, la structure européenne de Gatestone est composée de Marc D’anna, aka Alexandre Del Valle, le théoricien du « patriotisme intégrateur », ainsi que de l’universitaire Guy Millière et d’Anne Elizabeth Moutet, deux « dinstinguished senior fellow » de cette instance.

    La liste des auteurs de Gatestone sur ce lien :
    https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/authors

    En dissonance toutefois avec Bernard Henry Lévy, Amir Tahéri, une fois n’est pas coutume, brisera net le délire fabulatoire du philo mondain sur les origines hitlériennes du terme Iran, lancée par le fer de lance médiatique du lobby pro israélien en Europe dans une campagne d’intoxication de l’opinion occidentale préludant à sa préparation à une intervention militaire de l’Otan contre la République Islamique d’Iran. Monarchiste revanchard, Amir Taheri ciblera dans son argumentaire de refutation les « Gardiens de la Révolution et le régime islamique, ces deux bêtes noires, mais non le fondement même de la démarche du théoricien du Botul.
    https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/12333/hitler-reza-shah

    Intervenante régulière de la chaîne franco allemande ARTE dans l’émission d’Elizabeth Quinn « 28 Minutes », la chroniqueuse du Daily Telegraph justifiera le carnage israélien des Palestiniens de Gaza (57 morts et 2.400 blessés), -le jour du transfert de l’ambassade américaine vers Jérusalem, le 14 Mai 2018-, en reprenant textuellement les « éléments de langage » de la propagande israélienne.
    Cette séquence a plongé dans la stupeur les autres participants à l’émission par la virulence de sa défense de la politique israélienne, faisant volet en éclat l’apparente objectivité qu’elle s’evertuait à afficher pour la défense de la politique atlantiste.
    L’émission a été diffusée le vendredi 17 mai sur Arte en présence des deux présentatrices du programme Elizabeth Quin et Nadia Daam, ainsi que de l’historien Pascal Blanchard et Alexis Poutin, journaliste au Monde Moderne. Elle demeurera dans les mémoires comme un morceau d’anthologie de la duplicité professionnelle, lorsqu’elle se pare de la qualité journalistique pour propager des thèses d’un think tank néo conservateur, sous l’apparence de la neutralité.

    Sur ce lien, la séquence :
    https://sites.arte.tv/28minutes/fr/le-club-28-revisite-lactualite-de-la-semaine-28minutes-75

    LE JOURNALISME MILICIEN EN FRANCE
    La reconversion des journalistes miliciens dans l’expertise contre terroriste est une pratique courante. Une forme de recyclage dans la respectabilité, qui s’est développée tant aux Etats Unis qu’en France.
    Walid Pharès a ainsi fait son apparition dans les lucarnes françaises notamment sur France 24, sous la direction de Christine Ockrent, auditrice assidue du groupe de Bilderbeg, réputé pour son atlantisme.

    Sur ce lien le portrait de Christine Ockrent : https://www.renenaba.com/christine-ockrent-le-passe-droit-permanent

    Le journalisme milicien qu’il incarne si parfaitement a trouvé son illustration en France, sous couvert d’expertise anti terroriste, en la personne de deux libanais maronites habitués des plateaux français : Antoine Basbous, Directeur de « l’Observatoire des Pays arabes », auparavant ancien porte-parole des Forces Libanaises, l’organisation dirigée par Samir Geagea, un des plus grands criminels de la guerre libanaise et fossoyeur du leadership chrétien, et, Antoine Sfeir, Directeur des « Cahiers de l’Orient et des Pays arabes », auparavant cheville ouvrière sur le plan médiatique de la campagne pour l’élection à la présidence de la République Libanaise du chef milicien phalangiste Bachir Gemayel, en 1982, puis de son frère Amine.

    Pour aller plus loin sur ce sujet, cf ce lien : https://www.renenaba.com/les-thuriferaires-libanais-de-la-dictature-ben-ali-sur-le-grill-tunisien

    Et pour le recyclage des membres de l’« État Profond américain » dans les médias américains, sur ce lien : https://www.mondialisation.ca/des-anciens-de-letat-profond-sont-embauches-par-les-medias-grand-public/5623065

    Walid Pharès a vécu 33 ans au Liban de 1957 à 1990. Mais ses nuisances continuent à se faire encore sentir de nos jours contre sa patrie d’origine. Son retour au pays natal, il l’a accompli muni d’un passeport diplomatique américain. Doté d’une immunité et d’une impunité pour revisiter ses méfaits, comme étranger à ses forfaits comme étranger au pays qu’il a tant contribué à sinistrer.

    Le tropisme pro israélien des dirigeants maronites libanais, auquel il a grandement contribué, a conduit le président phalangiste Amine Gémayel à conclure un Traité de Paix entre le Liban et Israël, en 1983, mais la mise en œuvre de ce document a été entravée par un soulèvement de la population de Beyrouth, cas unique dans les annales diplomatiques internationales d’un traité mort-né, abrogé par la volonté populaire.

    Parfait exemple d’un dévoiement par sectarisme, Walid Pharès appartient à la cohorte des soldats perdus d’une cause perdue, sécrétée par la guerre interfactionnelle libanaise ; À l’exemple du commandant Saad Haddad, l’officier félon libanais, garde frontière d’Israël au sein de l’Armée du Sud Liban (ASL), de son successeur, le général Antoine Lahad, dont la famille a eu l’outrecuidance de vouloir enterrer au Liban mais que la vox populi l’en dissuada ; Tous vivant sans le savoir une pathologie passée dans l’histoire comme étant « le complexe des exilés de Coblence », du nom de ses exilés monarchistes français qui ont rallié les ennemis de la France pour abattre la révolution.

    Autant de manifestations des pulsions mortifères de l’irredentisme maronite qui débouchèrent sur la relégation politique du leadership maronite, désormais réduit à un rôle d’appoint ou de nuisance, non à un rôle constructif de proposition, mais à un rôle destructeur d’obstruction, au terme de quinze ans de bruits et de fureurs, de dérives et de délires.

    EPILOGUE : LE SYNDROME MARONITE
    Cadeau empoisonné de la France, le confessionnalisme constitue une négation de la démocratie en ce que la citoyenneté libanaise est conditionnée et handicapée par la naissance.

    Mur de verre invisible et infranchissable, il contribue à ce titre à la nécrose de la vie poilitique libanaise. Sur un point nommé, dans des domaines précis, la naissance confère un primat à une communauté au détriment des autres communautés par le Fait du Prince, l’arbitraire du pouvoir colonial.

    Elle prédétermine les membres d’une communauté à des fonctions indépendamment de leur compétence. Elle conforte une communauté dans un sentiment de supériorité ou de frustration.

    Les exemples sont nombreux des dérives du confessionnalisme. Le leadership maronite a ainsi assumé, par une sorte de Hold up, la direction des combats du camp chrétien lors de la guerre civile libanaise (1975-1990), à l’exclusion des autres composantes de la chrétienté libanaise, quand bien même elles en subissaient les conséquences.

    Le primat conféré par la France à la communauté maronite dans l’exercice des responsabilités suprêmes au Liban aurait dû se vivre comme une délégation de pouvoir au bénéfice de l’ensemble des communautés chrétiennes du Monde arabe et non comme la marque d’une supériorité immanente d’une communauté spécifique au détriment des autres, en ce que les Maronites constituaient la plus importante minorité des minorités chrétiennes du Liban et non la communauté chrétienne majoritaire d’un Monde arabe, majoritairement musulman.

    Pour n’avoir pas observé cette règle non écrite de la prudence politique, elle en paiera le prix par le déclassement de ses prérogatives constitutionnelles, entraînant dans sa relégation les autres composantes chrétiennes innocentes de cet emballement.
    Victimes innocentes souvent, bourreaux parfois plus que de besoin, les camps palestiniens de la quarantaine (est de Beyrouth), en 1976, et de Sabra Chatila (sud de Beyrouth), en 1982, passeront dans l’histoire comme de sanglantes illustrations pathologiques de la déraison humaine, au passif du leadership maronite, particulièrement les milices chrétiennes des Forces Libanaises.

    Par une sorte d’abus de position dominante conféré par la France en sa qualité de puissance mandataire sur le Liban et la Syrie, les Maronites ont procédé à une sorte de captation d’héritage se présentant comme les dépositaires des intérêts supérieurs de la chrétienté d’Orient, réduisant la chrétienté aux seuls intérêts de l’Eglise maronite, confondant en somme maronitisme et chrétienté, se vivant en maître incontesté du Liban.

    L’extravagante position de Camille Chamoun, président du Liban (1952-1958), se refusant seul contre l’ensemble arabe, à rompre ses relations diplomatiques avec la France, dans la foulée de l’expédition de Suez, alors que l’Egypte faisait l’objet d’une agression concertée entre la France, Israël et la Grande Bretagne (1956) et que l’Algérie ployait sous le joug des ratonnades coloniales, constituait déjà un indice prémonitoire de la psychorigidité maronite, de la cécité politique de ses dirigeants et de la serviabilité extrême dont témoignent des membres de cette communauté à l’égard des puissances occidentales particulièrement de la France et des États-Unis, se plaçant paradoxalement en situation de « dhimitude » par rapport à leurs protecteurs occidentaux, une servitude qu’il dénonçait du temps de l’époque ottomane. Le discours souverainiste des Libanais masque mal une logique de vassalité à l’ordre atlantiste.

    L’inculpation en juillet 2010 de plusieurs officiers supérieurs chrétiens de même que des cadres supérieurs exerçant des responsabilités sensibles à un poste stratégique de leur entreprise de communications pour « intelligence avec l’ennemi », au même titre que la formation d’une armée de supplétif sous commandement chrétien au service des israéliens durant la guerre civile libanaise (1975-1990), ont alimenté la suspicion sur la loyauté des chrétiens arabes à leur environnement avec ses conséquences corrosives sur le sort des chrétiens dans le monde arabe.

    L’alliance du leadership maronite avec Israël, l’ennemi officiel du Monde arabe, constituera l’un des points noirs de l’histoire de la chrétienté arabe, et les chefs de cette équipée suicidaire, Bachir Gemayel, président éphémère du Liban, et ses successeurs, Elie Hobeika et Samir Geagea, comme les plus sinistres personnages de l’histoire du Liban en termes de bilan pour la chrétienté, en ce qu’ils ont substitué la lutte pour la réalisation des droits nationaux des Palestiniens, par la recherche de l’éradication d’un peuple déjà spolié de sa patrie, les Palestiniens, en compensation des turpitudes occidentales à l’égard des Juifs européens.

    Les miliciens chrétiens ont intériorisé, ce faisant, la perversité de la logique occidentale dans un tragique dévoiement de la pensée, ne s’imaginant pas un seul instant que « le peuple de trop au Moyen orient », selon l’expression du chef phalangiste Bachir Gémayel, pourrait être un jour « le peuple chrétien arabe ».

    Pour aller plus loin sur les Maronites, ce lien :

    www.renenaba.com/france-liban-a-propos-des-maronites/

    ILLUSTRATION
    Walid Phares lecturing in front of a Lebanese Forces banner in 1986Photo courtesy of An-Nahar                                                                                                                                                           By René Naba , in Actualités Liban Moyen-Orient Portrait on 6 novembre 2018 .


  • Déconstruction des mythes fondateurs de la grandeur française René Naba - /oumma.com
    https://oumma.com/deconstruction-des-mythes-fondateurs-de-la-grandeur-francaiseune-lecture-frac
    http://www.les7duquebec.com/7-au-front/deconstruction-des-mythes-fondateurs-de-la-grandeur-francaise

    Une lecture fractale de l’Histoire de France : Réponse à Bruno Gollnisch, Philippe Val, Philippe Douste Blazy et Nicolas Sarkozy

    La scène se passait en juin 1998, il n’y a pas si longtemps, huit ans environ à peine, un mois avant la grande communion multicolore du Mondial, la première victoire de la France bariolée dans le championnat du Monde de Football : Bruno Gollnisch, le successeur potentiel du dirigeant du Front National Jean Marie Le Pen, exhibait, au terme d’une conférence de presse, un attaché-case, dont il révélait le code secret de verrouillage comme un trophée de guerre (1).

    Le code secret par définition doit demeurer secret. Il se conserve comme une sainte relique. Pour M.Gollnisch, cela n’est évidemment pas le cas : le secret est public surtout lorsqu’il s’agit de stigmatiser, surtout lorsqu’il s’agit de glaner un succès à bon compte. Chacun a les satisfactions intellectuelles de son niveau d’éducation.

    Ménageant ses effets, il déclame en public sa combinaison magique de trois chiffres, l’égrenant lentement 7-3-2 dans un mouvement jouissif libérateur. 732. l’effet est assuré. 732, #Poitiers. La victoire controversée de #Charles_Martel sur les troupes arabes d’Abdel Rahman.

    Cela se passait donc en 1998 et #Gollnisch prenait pour référence un événement datant de 1266 ans. 1266 ans de rumination historique. Sans doute la marque manifeste du zèle d’un néophyte. 1266 ans de rumination pour ce Français de la troisième génération, comme l’on désigne en France les petits fils d’immigrés, en l’occurrence un petit fils d’immigrés allemands.


    Correspondant de guerre sur les théâtres d’opérations extérieurs du territoire métropolitain, l’exhibition impudique de Bruno Gollnisch, la passivité des #journalistes présents devant sa vaine et vaniteuse démonstration ont opéré comme un déclic en moi me propulsant dans une navigation sidérante dans le tréfonds de la conscience française, dont je souhaite vous livrer les conclusions sans appétence polémique particulière, dans le droit fil de la thématique de ce colloque « D’une rive à l’autre, Ecrire l’Histoire, Décoloniser les Esprits ».

    L’exercice ne relève ni de la démagogie, ni d’un populisme de bon aloi, de bonne guerre il est vrai, dans ce genre de démonstration. Il vise à apporter une contribution à la clarification sémantique et psychologique du débat post-colonial par le pistage des non-dits de la conscience nationale à travers un voyage dans les méandres de l’imaginaire français.

    Ni populisme, ni démagogie, ni dénigrement non plus. Mais l’application de l’analyse de contenu à de constats qui s’ils sont lapidaires ne sont nullement sommaires ni rudimentaires.

    Une thérapie par électrochocs en somme. Un voyage révélateur des présupposés d’un peuple, des ressorts psychologiques d’une nation et de la complexion mentale de ses dirigeants.

    Embarquons nous donc pour ce voyage de #déconstruction des mythes fondateurs de la #grandeur_française avec un grand merci pour Bruno Gollnisch d’en avoir été, involontairement, l’élément déclencheur.
    .
    Le Panache français ou le mythe de la grandeur
    Le propos n’est pas anodin. Il correspond à une réalité indéniable : la dernière grande victoire militaire française remonte à deux siècles. Oui deux siècles exactement. #Austerlitz. Certes il y eut #Valmy et le Pont d’Arcole. Puis Austerlitz. Le panache français en somme. Puis. Plus rien….drôle de panache. Ce fut ensuite Waterloo (1815), face aux Anglais, Sedan (1870), face aux Allemands, Fachoda (1898), qui brisa net l’accès de la France aux sources du Nil, au Soudan. Soit près d‘un siècle de désastres militaires ininterrompus, compensés, il est vrai, par les conquêtes coloniales notamment l’#Algérie. A croire que les expéditions coloniales sont d’utiles palliatifs aux désastres nationaux et par transposition au débat contemporain, les immigrés d’indispensables dérivatifs aux difficultés internes.

    #VERDUN 1916 et Rethondes I (l’armistice du 11 novembre 1918), cent ans après Waterloo refermeront la parenthèse néfaste. Mais là, les Français ne sont pas seuls. Ils ne peuvent plus revendiquer la victoire à leur bénéfice exclusif. C’est une « victoire alliée » qu’ils devront partager avec leurs alliés britanniques et américains mais aussi avec les nouveaux venus de la scène internationale : les #Basanés. 550.449 soldats de l’Outre mer dont 173.000 Algériens, soit 20 pour cent des effectifs et 10 pour cent de la population du pays participeront à l’effort de guerre de la France. 78.116 #ultramarins tomberont sur le champ d’honneur, soit l’équivalent de la totalité de la population de #Vitrolles et d’#Orange prises ensemble, les deux fiefs de l‘extrême droite française contemporaine.

    La pensée peut paraître sacrilège mais elle correspond, là aussi, à la réalité : Verdun est à ce titre autant une victoire française qu’une victoire arabe et africaine. Certes la « chair à canon » était présentée comme étant de peu de valeur face à la qualité des stratèges du Haut commandement. Mais le fait est là aussi démontré : Après Verdun beaucoup avaient cru naïvement que la France s’était réconciliée avec la victoire. Et bien non. 1940 et #Rethondes Bis (la capitulation de #Montoire du 21 juin 1940) apporteront la preuve du contraire. #Monte_Cassino (1944) lavera l’honneur français mais la plus grande victoire française de la Deuxième Guerre mondiale est une victoire mixte : Cent mille (100.000) soldats alliés, contre 60.000 Allemands, ainsi que 4000 ressortissants du #Maghreb auront payé de leur vie cette victoire. 4.000 originaires du Maghreb sur 6.300 tués dans les rangs français, soit les 2/3 des effectifs. Monte Cassino est donc tout autant une victoire alliée, qu’une victoire française, arabe et africaine.

    Le schéma est identique en ce qui concerne le domaine naval. Le dernier fait d’armes français -controversé tout de même- remonte à #Aboukir (1799). Puis ce fut au tour de Trafalgar (1805), Toulon (1942), le Charles de Gaulle et son hélice manquante durant la guerre d’Afghanistan (2001), la première guerre du XXI me siècle, enfin les pérégrinations de l’ancien joyau de la flotte française, le Clemenceau, en 2005. On aurait rêvé meilleur traitement à De Gaulle et à Clemenceau, tout de même deux personnages considérables de l’Histoire de France.

    Victorieuse avec ses anciens colonisés, la France retrouvera le chemin de la défaite lorsqu’elle se dressera contre eux. Carbonisée à #Dien_Bien_Phu (1954) contre le Vietnam, première victoire d’un pays du tiers monde sur un pays occidental, ainsi qu’en Algérie (1954-1962).
    .
    Le tryptique républicain (#Liberté, #Egalité, #Fraternité), le mythe fondateur de l’exception française.
    A) La liberté : 
La Colonisation est la négation de la Liberté. La #Colonisation n’est pas, loin s’en faut, « la mise en valeur des richesses d’un pays transformé en #colonie » selon la plus récente définition du dictionnaire « Le Petit Robert » Edition -2007

    La liberté et La colonisation sont proprement antinomiques. Car la colonisation est l’exploitation d’un pays, la spoliation de ses richesses, l’asservissement de sa population au bénéfice d’une #Métropole dont elle est, en fait, un marché captif, le réservoir de ses matières premières et le déversoir de son surplus démographique, de sa main d’œuvre et de sa surpopulation, le volant régulateur du chômage et de l’inflation dans les sociétés occidentales.

    Contraire aux idéaux de Liberté, d’Egalité et de fraternité, les principes fondateurs de la Révolution Française, la colonisation est le fossoyeur de l’#idéal_républicain. Elle l’aura été quand bien même d’illustres figures françaises, telles Léon Blum, la conscience morale du socialisme, auront voulu – déjà- en célébrer les bienfaits comme un devoir de faire accéder à la civilisation les peuples primitifs (2).

    Par transposition au débat contemporain, la rhétorique de #Léon_Blum est comparable à celle de la nouvelle conscience de la nouvelle gauche française, le philosophe #André_Glucksman, présentant l’invasion américaine de l’Irak en 2003 comme une contribution occidentale à l’instauration de la démocratie en terre arabe et non comme la mainmise américaine sur les gisements pétroliers de ce pays. « Le fardeau de l’homme blanc », théorisé par l’anglais Kipling, est un alibi commode, le thème récurrent à toutes les équipées prédatrices du monde occidental.
    B ) L’Egalité : 
L’exception française est une singularité : Premier pays à avoir institutionnalisé la terreur comme mode de gouvernement, avec Maximilien de Robespierre, sous la Révolution française (1794), la France sera aussi le premier pays à inaugurer la #piraterie_aérienne, en 1955, avec le déroutement de l’avion des chefs historiques du mouvement indépendantiste algérien Ahmad Ben Bella, Mohamad Khider, Mohamad Boudiaf et Krim Belkacem), donnant ainsi l’exemple aux militants du tiers-monde en lutte pour leur indépendance.

    La récidive dans la singularité est aussi un trait de l’exception française : En effet, ce pays jacobin, égalisateur et égalitaire se singularisera, aussi, en étant le seul pays au monde à avoir officialisé le « #gobino-darwinisme juridique », à avoir codifié en Droit « la théorie de l’inégalité des #races », une codification opérée sans discernement, pour promouvoir non l’égalité, mais la #ségrégation.

    La « Patrie des Droits de L’Homme » et des compilations juridiques modernes -le code civil et le code pénal- est aussi le pays de la codification discriminatoire, le pays de la codification de l’abomination : le pays du« #Code_Noir » de l’esclavage, sous la Monarchie, du « Code de l’#indigénat » en Algérie, sous la République, qu’il mettra en pratique avec les « expositions ethnologiques », ces « #zoos_humains » (3) dressés pour ancrer dans l’imaginaire collectif des peuples du tiers monde l’idée d’une infériorité durable des « peuples de couleur », et, par contrecoup, la supériorité de la race blanche comme si le blanc n’était pas une couleur, même si elle est immaculée, ce qui est loin d’être le cas.

    Un chiffre suffit à démontrer l’inanité de ce principe d’égalité : Trois membres du dernier gouvernement de l’ère chiraquienne présidé par Dominique De #Villepin (2005) ont été affectés à la mise en œuvre de ce principe dans ses diverses déclinaisons : la cohésion sociale (Jean Louis Borloo), la promotion de l’égalité des chances entre Français de souche et Français naturalisés (Azouz Begag) enfin la parité Hommes-femmes (Catherine Vautrin).

    Ce principe d’égalité est pourtant l’un des principes fondateurs de la République, entériné comme bien commun de la nation depuis deux siècles. Que n’a-t-on songé à le mettre en œuvre auparavant ? A croire que la laïcité ce concept unique au monde ne s’est forgé que pour servir de cache-misère à un #chauvinisme récurrent de la société française.

    Les hochets offerts épisodiquement non aux plus méritants mais aux plus dociles, en guise de lot de consolation, loin d’atténuer cette politique discriminatoire, en soulignent la parfaite contradiction avec le message universaliste de la France. Ils l’exposent à de douloureux retours de bâtons.

    C) Fraternité : Le #Bougnoule, la marque de stigmatisation absolue, le symbole de l’ingratitude absolue.
    La fraternisation sur les champs de bataille a bien eu lieu mais la fraternité jamais. Jamais pays au monde n’a autant été redevable de sa liberté aux peuples basanés et pourtant jamais pays au monde n’a autant compulsivement réprimé ses alliés coloniaux, dont il a été lourdement redevable de sa survie en tant que grande nation. De Fraternité point, mais en guise de substitut, la stigmatisation, la #discrimination et la #répression à profusion.

    Par deux fois en un même siècle, phénomène rarissime dans l’histoire, ces soldats de l’avant, les avant-gardes de la mort et de la victoire auront été embrigadés dans des conflits qui leur étaient, étymologiquement, totalement étrangers, dans une « querelle de blancs », avant d’être rejetés, dans une sorte de catharsis, dans les ténèbres de l’infériorité, renvoyés à leur condition subalterne, sérieusement réprimés aussitôt leur devoir accompli, comme ce fut le cas d’une manière suffisamment répétitive pour ne pas être un hasard, à #Sétif (Algérie), en 1945, cruellement le jour de la victoire alliée de la seconde Guerre Mondiale, au camp de #Thiaroye (Sénégal) en 1946, et, à #Madagascar, en 1947, sans doute à titre de rétribution pour leur concours à l’effort de guerre français.

    ((A noter qu’en Grande Bretagne, contrairement à la France, la contribution ultramarine à l’effort de guerre anglais a été de nature paritaire, le groupe des pays anglo-saxons relevant de la population #Wasp (White Anglo Saxon Protestant), -#Canada, #Australie, #Nouvelle Zélande, a fourni des effectifs sensiblement égaux aux peuples basanés de l’empire britannique (indiens, pakistanais etc.). Il s’en est suivi la proclamation de l’Indépendance de l’#Inde et du #Pakistan en 1948, au sortir de la guerre, contrairement, là aussi, à la France qui s’engagera dans dix ans de ruineuses guerres coloniales (#Indochine, Algérie).

    « Bougnoule » tire ainsi son origine de l’expression argotique de cette supplique ante-mortem.
    La revendication ultime préludant au sacrifice suprême -« Aboul Gnoul, apporte l’#alcool »- le breuvage galvanisateur de l’assaut des lignes ennemies, finira par constituer, par un dévoiement de la pensée, la marque d’une stigmatisation absolue de ceux qui auront massivement contribué, à deux reprises, au péril de leur vie, à vaincre, paradoxalement, les oppresseurs de leurs propres oppresseurs.

    Dans les ouvrages français, le calvaire de leur dépersonnalisation et leur combat pour la restauration de leur identité et de leur dignité se résumeront à cette définition laconique : « Le bougnoule, nom masculin apparu en 1890, signifie noir en langue Wolof (dialecte du Sénégal). Donné familièrement par des blancs du Sénégal aux noirs autochtones, ce nom deviendra au XXme siècle une appellation injurieuse donnée par les Européens d’Afrique du Nord aux #Nord-Africains. Synonyme de #bicot et de #raton » (4). Un glissement sémantique du terme bougnoule s’opérera au fil du temps pour englober, bien au delà de l’Afrique du Nord, l’ensemble de la France, tous les « mélanodermes », #arabo-berbères et #négro-africains, pour finir par s’ancrer dans le tréfonds de la conscience comme la marque indélébile d’un dédain absolu, alors que parallèlement, par extension du terme raton qui lui est synonyme, le langage courant désignait par « #ratonnade » une technique de répression policière sanctionnant le délit de faciès.

    Bougnoule finira par confondre dans la même infamie tous les métèques de l’Empire, piétaille de la République, promus au rang de défenseurs occasionnels de la Patrie, qui étaient en fait les défenseurs essentiels d’une patrie qui s’est toujours voulue distincte dans le concert des nations, qui se distinguera souvent d’une façon lumineuse, d’une façon hideuse parfois, traînant tel un boulet, Vichy, l’Algérie, la collaboration, la délation, la déportation et la torture, les pages honteuses de son histoire, peinant des décennies durant à expurger son passé, et, pour avoir tardé à purger son passif, en paiera le prix en termes de magistère moral…….Une revanche posthume du bougnoule, en quelque sorte.
    .
    La France du triptyque républicain : une vision ethniciste face au phénomène exogène.
    L’affirmation peut paraître péremptoire, n’y voyons aucune malice, mais correspond néanmoins à la réalité historique : Le clivage communautaire a préexisté en France dans l’esprit des autorités et des citoyens du pays d’accueil bien avant qu’il ne prenne corps dans l’esprit des migrants.

    Par transposition du schéma colonial à l’espace métropolitain, l’immigré en France a longtemps été perçu comme un indigène, ce qui faisait paradoxalement de l’immigré, l’indigène de celui qui est étymologiquement l’indigène (5), une main-d’oeuvre relevant de la #domesticité de convenance, dont l’expatriation assurait sa subsistance et l’obligeait par voie de conséquence à un devoir de gratitude envers le pays hôte.

    D’extraction modeste, affecté à des taches subalternes et pénibles de surcroît non valorisantes, l’immigré, parqué en marge des villes, était par définition et par destination un être en marge de la société, un élément #marginal et non une composante de la société française. Il n’avait de ce fait ni droit de cité, ni droit de regard, ni a fortiori droit de parole.

    L’immigré a été d’autant plus occulté qu’il deviendra durant les années 1950-1970 responsable de tous les maux diplomatiques et économiques français : du désastre de Dien Bien Phu, en 1954, à la Guerre d’Algérie, à l’expédition franco-britannique de Suez contre le symbole du nationalisme arabe Nasser, en 1956, à l’affrontement de Bizerte et la décolonisation de l’Afrique, en 1960, à la 3ème guerre israélo-arabe de juin 1967, à la première crise pétrolière, en 1973, autant d’événements qui ont fini par diaboliser l’immigré notamment “#arabo-musulman” dans le regard du français.

    Dans le domaine de l’imaginaire et le champ de la production intellectuelle, l’arabe représentait alors par compensation “le mal absolu” identifié dans le langage courant par cette rodomontade musculatoire : “le bougnoule à qui l’on doit faire suer le burnous”.

    Par un faux effet d’optique, la France se donnera l’illusion de venger ses avatars d’Algérie et, par un philosémitisme actif, l’illusion de sa rédemption, substituant une arabophobie à une judéophobie, en somme une injustice à une autre injustice, feignant par là même d’ignorer que l’injustice ne se combat pas par une autre #injustice.

    Symptomatique de cet état de fait, le #harki, celui-là même qui dans le schéma mental français devait représenter le bon arabe ou le bon immigré puisqu’il s’était rangé de son côté, c’est à dire du bon côté, sera gommé de la conscience nationale et dissimulé dans les recoins arides du pays, dans une démarche symbolique destinée à refouler ce « déchet du colonialisme » dans le tréfonds de la conscience.

    La crispation identitaire française remonte, en fait, sur le plan national, aux premières vagues d’immigration de l’ensemble arabo-musulman, principalement du Maghreb, le ponant du monde arabe, plus précisément à la Première Guerre Mondiale (1914-1918). Avec 1,4 millions de morts, 900 000 invalides, la France déplorera la perte de 11 pour cent de sa population active du fait du premier conflit mondial, à laquelle il conviendrait d’ajouter les dégâts économiques : 4,2 millions d’hectares ravagés, 295 000 maisons détruites, 500 000 endommagés, 4.800 km de voies ferrées et 58.000 km de routes à restaurer et 22 900 usines à reconstruire et 330 millions de m3 de tranchées à combler.

    Les premiers travailleurs immigrés, des #Kabyles, arriveront en France dès 1904 par petits groupes, mais la Première Guerre Mondiale provoquera un effet d’accélérateur entraînant un recours massif aux « travailleurs coloniaux » auxquels se superposeront les renforts des champs de bataille comptabilisés sous une autre rubrique.

    L’indigène lointain cède la place à l’immigré de proximité. De curiosité exotique que l’on exhibe dans les zoos humains pour glorifier l’action coloniale française, le mélanoderme deviendra progressivement une donnée permanente du paysage humain de la vie quotidienne métropolitaine, sa présence vécue comme une contrainte, exacerbée par la différenciation des modes de vie entre immigrés et métropolitains, les fluctuations économiques et les incertitudes politiques du pays d’accueil

    Paradoxalement, dans la période de l’entre-deux guerres (1918-1938), la France va favoriser la mise en place d’une « République Xénophobe » (6), matrice de l’idéologie vichyste et de la « préférence nationale », alors que son besoin en main d’oeuvre est criant. Bien que contribuant à sortir la France de son champ de ruine, les travailleurs immigrés seront tenus en suspicion, pistés au sein d’un grand « fichier central ».

    Soumis pour l’obtention de la carte de séjour à une taxation équivalant parfois à un demi mois de salaire, source de revenus complémentaire pour l’Etat français, ils seront de surcroît perçus comme porteurs d’un triple péril : péril économique pour leurs concurrents français, péril sanitaire pour la population française dans la mesure où l’étranger particulièrement les Asiatiques, les Africains et les Maghrébins étaient présumés porteurs de maladies, péril sécuritaire pour l’Etat français.

    Près de deux cent mille « #travailleurs_coloniaux » (200 000) seront ainsi importés d’Afrique du Nord et du continent noir par de véritables corporations négrières, telle la « Société générale de l’immigration » (#SGI), afin de pallier la main d’oeuvre française principalement dans le bâtiment et l’industrie textile en remplacement des soldats français partis au front. Dans la cohorte de travailleurs immigrés, venus d’abord principalement d’Italie et de Pologne, les Maghrébins feront l’objet d’une attention spéciale de la part des pouvoirs publics.

    Un « Bureau de surveillance et de protection des indigènes nord-africains chargé de la répression des crimes et des délits » est constitué le 31 mars 1925. Un bureau spécial rien que pour les Maghrébins, précurseur du « service des #questions_juives » que le pouvoir vichyste mettra en place en 1940 pour la surveillance des nationaux français de « race ou de confession juive » durant la Seconde Guerre mondiale.
    ((NDLR Citation de l’article de la juriste Danièle Lochak « La race, une catégorie juridique ? »
    (http://www.anti-rev.org/textes/Lochak92a ) :
    « la loi du 3 octobre 1940 portant statut des Juifs dispose : “Est regardé comme juif pour l’application de la présente loi toute personne issue de trois grands parents de race juive ou de deux grands parents de la même race, si son conjoint lui-même est juif”. Cette définition, qui laisse en suspens la question de savoir comment sera déterminée l’appartenance des grands-parents à la race juive, sera remplacée, dans la loi du 2 juin 1941, par une définition plus explicite : “Est regardé comme juif :

    1° celui ou celle appartenant ou non à une confession quelconque, qui est issu d’au moins trois grands-parents de #race juive, ou de deux seulement si son conjoint est lui-même issu de deux grands-parents de race juive. Est regardé comme étant de race juive le grand-parent ayant appartenu à la religion juive ;

    2° celui ou celle qui appartient à la religion juive et qui est issu de deux grands-parents de race juive”. »

    L’intitulé de l’office en dit long quant à l’opinion du gouvernement français et de ses intention à l’égard des « indigènes » d’Afrique du Nord. Le phénomène ira en s’amplifiant avec la Deuxième Guerre Mondiale et les trente glorieuses années de l’après-guerre (1945-1975) qui suivirent la reconstruction de l’Europe, où le besoin de « chairs à canon » et d’une main d’oeuvre abondante à bas prix provoqueront un nouveau flux migratoire égal en importance au précédent.

    Luxe de raffinement, le recrutement s’opérait selon des critères d’affinités géographiques au point de constituer de véritables couples migratoires en particulier entre Renault et l’embauche kabyle, charbonnages de France et les travailleurs du sud marocain, de même qu’en Allemagne, Wolkswagen et les immigrés turcs.

    A l’instar d’une cotation boursière sur un marché de bétail, les travailleurs coloniaux faisaient même l’objet d’une #notation en fonction de leur nationalité et de leur race (7) avec de subtiles distinctions selon leur lieu de provenance notamment au sein des Algériens où les Kabyles bénéficiaient d’un préjugé plus favorable que les autres composantes de la population algérienne. Le Kabyle était invariablement noté 5/20, l’arabe 4/20 et l’Indochinois 3/20. Ho Chi Minh témoin de cette humiliante notation ethnique lors de son séjour parisien, se vengera trente ans plus tard en infligeant à son ancien maître l’une des plus humiliantes défaites militaires du monde occidental, la défaite de Dien Bien Phu en 1954.

    Muettes, les blessures de l’histoire ne cicatrisent jamais.
    La France s’affiche volontiers révolutionnaire mais se révèle, en fait, profondément conservatrice. La France du triptyque républicain a eu un comportement liberticide avec la colonisation, ethniciste dans sa politique migratoire, un comportement sociocide dans sa structuration socio-culturelle et démographique.
    .
    Le mythe de la politique arabe de la France
    Philipe Val, le directeur conformiste de l’hebdomadaire faussement anarchiste Charlie Hebdo, impute la collaboration vichyste anti-juive à « la politique arabe de la France ». Ce mémorialiste des temps modernes qui se vit en rival contemporain du cardinal de RETZ, s’imagine, par ce raccourci non pas audacieux mais hasardeux, exonérer la France de l’#antisémitisme récurrent de la société française.

    Sauf à prêter aux Arabes une capacité d’anticipation d’une hardiesse rare confinant à un machiavélisme suprême, en vue de soudoyer l’Etat-Major français pour le conduire à faire condamner pour « haute trahison » un officier français de confession juive, le Capitaine Alfred Dreyfus, ou encore à gangrener le haut commandement politico-militaire français en vue de savourer le désastre de 1940, l’antisémitisme en France a préexisté à la présence arabe et musulmane en France.

    Le plus grand déferlement d’Arabes et de Musulmans en France est survenu à l’occasion de la Deuxième Guerre Mondiale, non pour l’appât du gain -« pour manger le pain des Français »-, mais bien pour libérer avec d’autres le pays du joug nazi, pour aider à la défense d’un pays que ses habitants n’ont pas su, pas pu ou pas voulu défendre… C’est-à-dire près de cinquante ans après l’affaire Dreyfus et dans la foulée de la capitulation de Montoire.

    Et, que je sache, le « Bureau des affaires juives », a eu pour précurseur immédiat « le Bureau de surveillance et de protection des indigènes nord-africains » dont la création, en 1925, n’a pas suscité la moindre protestation des Français sans doute trop occupés à l’époque à magnifier leur supériorité dans l’admiration des « zoos humains »

    La thèse de Philipe Val ne résiste pas à une analyse un tant soit peu sérieuse. Mais qui a jamais soutenu que Philippe Val était un analyste ? Sérieux de surcroît ? Elle participe néanmoins d’une falsification de l’Histoire, d’un sournois travail de révisionnisme anti-arabe.

    Une politique se juge sur la durée. A l’épreuve des faits, la politique arabe de la France, dogme sacré s’il en est, se révèle être, par moments, une vaste mystification, un argument de vente du complexe militaro-industriel français. Qu’on en juge. L’histoire en est témoin.

    La contribution des Arabes à l’effort de guerre français en 1914-1918 pour la reconquête de l’Alsace-Lorraine a été franche et massive. Sans contrepartie. La France, en retour, vingt ans après cette contribution, a témoigné de sa gratitude à sa façon…… en amputant la #Syrie du district d’Alexandrette (1939) pour le céder à la Turquie, son ennemi de la Première guerre mondiale.

    Dans la foulée de la Deuxième Guerre mondiale, la France, récidiviste, carbonisera la première manifestation autonomiste des Algériens, à Sétif, le jour même de la victoire alliée, le 9 mai 1945, une répression qui apparaîtra rétrospectivement comme une aberration de l’esprit sans doute unique dans l’histoire du monde, dont les effets se font encore sentir de nos jours.

    Dix ans plus tard, en 1956, de concert avec Israël et la Grande Bretagne, la France se livre à une « expédition punitive » contre le chef de file du nationalisme arabe, Nasser, coupable d’avoir voulu récupérer son unique richesse nationale « le Canal de Suez ». Curieux attelage que cette « équipée de Suez » entre les rescapés du génocide hitlérien (les Israéliens) et l’un de leur ancien bourreau, la France, qui fut sous Vichy l’anti-chambre des camps de la mort.

    Curieux attelage pour quel combat ? Contre qui ? Des Arabes, ceux-là mêmes qui furent abondamment sollicités durant la deuxième guerre mondiale pour vaincre le régime nazi, c’est-à-dire l’occupant des Français et le bourreau des Israéliens. A moins qu’il ne s’agisse d’une forme élaborée de l’exception française, on aurait rêvé meilleure expression de la gratitude.

    Très concrètement, la politique arabe de la France a consisté, historiquement, en une opération de restauration de la souveraineté nationale dans les centres de décision du pouvoir politique français, après la guerre de juin 1967, par la rupture de la relation fusionnelle qui existait qui, au mépris de l’intérêt national, entre services français et israéliens.

    Bon nombre d’entre vous se rappellent peut-être le chef de la mission d’achat militaire israélienne en France disposait, à l’époque, non pas à l’ambassade israélienne, mais au sein même du ministère français des armées, d’un bureau jouxtant celui du directeur de cabinet du ministre, une proximité sans précédent même dans les pays colonisés.

    Bon nombre d’entre vous gardent peut être présent à l’esprit l’implication des services israéliens et français dans l’enlèvement du chef charismatique de l’opposition marocaine #Mehdi_Ben_Barka, en 1965, en plein jour, en plein Paris, ou encore le vol des cinq vedettes de Cherbourg par les Israéliens (Décembre 1969), la plus concrète manifestation sinon de la connivence du moins de la passivité des services français à l’égard des coups de main israéliens.

    L’ouverture de la France vers les pays arabes, en 1967, au terme d’une rupture de onze ans consécutive à l’expédition de Suez, lui a valu un regain de prestige après deux décennies de déboires militaires en Indochine et en Algérie, la conquête des marchés pétroliers, notamment l’#Irak, l’ancienne chasse gardée des Anglais, la percée majeure de la diplomatie gaulliste de la seconde moitié du XXme siècle, ainsi que de fabuleux contrats militaires de l’ordre de plusieurs centaines de millions de dollars, notamment avec l’Irak, la Libye et l’Arabie saoudite,

    L’illustration patente de la disparité de traitement entre Français et Arabes est la première crise de l’#énergie en 1973. A cette date, la France est officiellement le partenaire privilégié du Monde arabe, officiellement épargnée par le boycottage pétrolier anti-occidental, le principal bénéficiaire du boom pétrolier, le principal bénéficiaire des contrats pétro-monarchiques, mais les Français se cramponnent à une xénophobie lancinante, crispés sur un comportement guidé par une psychorigidité nourrie d’une nostalgie de grandeur.

    Tout le monde garde présent à l’esprit les traits d’humour d’une époque où les Français exultaient de compenser leur absence de ressources naturelles par une prétendue supériorité intellectuelle, affichant leur fierté de ne “pas avoir de pétrole mais des idées”, formule qui peut se décrypter de la façon suivante : “pas d’essence, mais la quintessence de l’esprit”, humour que sous-tendait une #arabophobie ambiante dans une période où les arabo-musulmans étaient cloués au pilori pour avoir osé frigorifier les Français avec leur crise de l’énergie.

    Le renchérissement du coût du pétrole était vécu comme un crime de lèse-majesté, alors qu’il s’agissait d’un problème de rajustement des prix du brut, longtemps outrageusement favorables aux économies occidentales.

    La contradiction entre l’ouverture pan-arabe de la diplomatie française et la crispation identitaire de l’opinion française posait déjà à l’époque le problème de la mise en cohérence de la politique française à l’égard du fait arabo-musulman.

    L’universalisme français a pratiqué à destination du monde arabo-musulman une « politique des minorités », contraire à ses principes fondateurs, institutionnalisant et instrumentalisant le confessionalisme et le communautarisme, se servant des Maronites (au Levant) et des Kabyles (au Ponant) comme levier à une re-christianisation de la rive méridionale de la Méditerranée, interdisant aux Algériens sur le sol même de leur patrie, l’usage de leur langue nationale, infligeant à ce pays un dégât plus important que les ravages de 130 ans de la colonisation, le dommage de l’esprit,— l’acculturation—, dont les effets corrosifs et pernicieux se font encore sentir de nos jours et qui expliquent pour une large part les crises cycliques entre les deux pays.

    La politique arabe de la France c’est cela aussi. Muettes et douloureuses, les blessures de la mémoire ne cicatrisent jamais.
    .
    La France : Aimez- là ou quittez-là ou le mythe de l’excellence française
    Ce mot d’ordre n’a même pas le mérite de l’originalité. IL a été emprunté à #Ronald_Reagan, le président Rambo des Etats-Unis de la décennie 1980 (1980-1988) qui entendait par cette formule neutraliser les critiques contre l’aventurisme américain dans la période post Vietnam (1975-1980).

    Empruntée à Reagan en vue de son application électoraliste en France par le dirigeant de la droite traditionaliste #Philippe_de_Villiers, reprise et amplifiée par…#Nicolas_Sarkozy, ce « Français de la deuxième génération » selon la dénomination en vigueur en France pour les citoyens originaires du tiers monde.

    Le clonage de l’Amérique n’est pas la marque de l’originalité.

    Les basanés de France sont là et bien là. Durablement ancrés dans le paysage politique et social français. Eux dont « le rôle positif » n’a jamais été célébré avec solennité, sinon que d’une manière, incidente quand il n’a pas été plus simplement nié ou controversé.

    En France, non pas leur pays d’accueil, mais leur pays d’élection.

    Déterminés à défendre la haute idée que la France veut donner d’elle-même au Monde.

    A combattre tous ceux qui fragilisent l’économie par une gestion hasardeuse, tous ceux qui discréditent la politique par une connivence sulfureuse,

    Tous ceux qui polluent l’image de la France, à coups d’emplois fictifs et de responsabilité fictive, de rétro-commissions et de frais de bouche, de délits d’initiés et d’abus de biens sociaux

    Ces messieurs des frégates de Taiwan et de Clearstream,
    Du Crédit Lyonnais et de la Compagnie Générale des Eaux,
    D’Elf Aquitaine et d’EADS,
    D’Executive Life et de Pechiney American-Can
    Des marchés d’Ile de France et de HLM de Paris, de la MNEF et d’Urba-Gracco,
    Ceux qui dévalorisent leur justice à coups d’affaires d’#Outreaux, d’écoutes téléphoniques illégales, de tri sélectif et de « #charters de la honte »
    Qui dévalorisent leurs nationaux à coups de bougnoule et de ratonnades, de racaille et de Karcher.

    Contre la « France d’en bas » qui gouverne le pays, la France des basses manoeuvres et des bas calculs, des « zones de non droit et de passe-droits », des nominations de complaisance et des appartements de fonction, la France qui refuse de donner un coup de pouce au SMIC, qui « cristallise », c’est-à-dire, fige à sa portion congrue, les retraites des anciens combattants « basanés » de l’armée française, mais qui relève de 70 pour cent le salaires des ministres nantis, qui gorge de « stock options et de parachutes dorés » les gérants en déconfiture, tels ceux de Vinci et de Carrefour, qui recycle la forfaiture dans l’honorabilité, propulsant au Conseil d’Etat, le temple de la vertu républicaine, en guise de rétribution pour services rendus dans la diversion de la justice, tel ministre de la justice, passé dans l’histoire comme le plus célèbre intercepteur d’hélicoptères des annales judiciaires internationales.

    En un mot contre cette posture du mépris et de l’irresponsabilité la singulière théorie du fusible à la française » qui exonère le responsable de toute responsabilité par une sorte de privilège anti-démocratique tirant sa justification dans une idéologie protofasciste inhérente à un pan de la culture française.

    Contre la criminalisation du politique, cet état de fait symptomatique de la France contemporaine illustré particulièrement par la présidence Chirac, dont la double mandature (1995-2000), douze ans, aura été polluée par de retentissants scandales politico-financiers en rapport avec l’argent illicite, sans pour autant que soit discrédité le chef de l’état français -le parangon de la « fracture sociale », de « l’état modeste » et d’un « siècle de l’Ethique », réélu en dépit des dérives autoritaro-mercantiles de son magistère.

    Le président Chirac précisément et non son prédécesseur François Mitterrand, en application de l’aveu d’un spécialiste du brigandage politique, Jean Montaldo, un chiraquien désabusé qui soutient, paroles d’expert, que « de Mitterrand à Chirac nous sommes passés du stade artisanal au stade industriel », dans le domaine de la corruption (8).

    N’y voyez aucune interférence électoraliste ou partisane : L’histoire d’aujourd’hui est la mémoire de demain et il importe d’être vigoureux dans la dénonciation des dérives contemporaines pour prévenir de douloureuses réminiscences de la mémoire future.

    « Le casier judiciaire de la République » présente ainsi l’édifiant bilan suivant : Neuf cent (900) élus mis en examen soit pour #délinquance financière, soit pour atteintes aux biens et aux personnes y compris les crimes sexuels. Ce bilan porte sur la décennie 1990-2000. Gageons que le bilan de la présente décennie est en passe d’être identique.

    La « #tolérance_zéro » à l’égard de la criminalité en col blanc se devrait d’être pourtant un impératif catégorique de l’ordre républicain en vertu du principe de l’exemplarité de l’Etat.

    La capitulation de Sedan face à l’Allemagne en 1870-71 a donné naissance à la III me République, la capitulation de Montoire (9) face à Hitler en 1940 à la IV me République (1946), celle de Dien Bien Phu et d’Algérie en 1955, à la V me République (1958), avec leurs cortèges de grandes institutions : Sedan à la création de « sciences po », l’Institut des Etudes Politiques de Paris et Montoire à la fondation de l’ENA, l’Ecole Nationale d’Administration (1945). Le pays des « Grandes Ecoles », des concours pépinières des élites, des scribes et des clercs, -cinq millions de fonctionnaires en France en l’an 2.000, le plus fort contingent de l’Union européenne, soit 20 pour cent de la population active- ne tolère pas de retour sur son passé. Il ne conçoit que les perspectives d’avenir. Jamais de rétrospectives, ni d’introspection. toujours des prospectives. Une fuite en avant ?

    Loin de participer d’une hypermnésie culpabilisante, le débat s’impose tant sur la contribution des « peuples basanés » à la libération du sol français, que sur leur apport au rayonnement de leur pays d’accueil, en guise de mesure de prophylaxie sociale sur les malfaisances coloniales dont l’occultation pourrait éclairer les dérives répétitives de la France, telles que -simple hypothèse d’école ?- la correspondance entre l’amnésie sur les « crimes de bureau » de 1940-44 et l’impunité régalienne de la classe politico administrative sur les scandales financiers de la fin du XX me siècle, ou la corrélation entre la déroute de l’élite bureaucratique de 1940 et la déconfiture de l’énarchie contemporaine.

    Cette dérive a été sanctionnée d’ailleurs lors de la première consultation populaire à l’échelon national du XXI me siècle. « Une des plus grandes bévues démocratiques de l’histoire contemporaine de la France », selon l’expression de l’écrivain indo britannique Salman Rushdie, la présidentielle de 2002 qui avait mis aux prises un « superfacho » et un « supermenteur », -selon la formule en vigueur à l’époque-, révélera aux Français et au Monde médusés, le délitement moral d’un pays volontiers sentencieux et le discrédit de son élite non moins volontairement obséquieusement arrogante, incapable d’assumer au terme d’un pouvoir monopolisé par les élites depuis la fin de la Deuxième Guerre Mondiale (1945), au niveau économique, la mutation postindustrielle de la société française, au niveau sociologique, sa mutation #postcoloniale, au niveau de son opinion nationale, sa mutation psychologique, signe de l’échec patent de la politique d’intégration de sa composante afro musulmane. Cinq siècles de colonisation intensive à travers le monde auraient dû pourtant banaliser la présence des « basanés » sur le sol français, de même que treize siècles de présence continue matérialisée par cinq vagues d’émigration conférer à l’Islam

    le statut de religion autochtone en France où le débat, depuis un demi siècle, porte sur la compatibilité de l’#Islam et de la République, comme pour conjurer l’idée d’une agrégation inéluctable aux peuples de France de ce groupement ethnico-identitaire, le premier d’une telle importance sédimenté hors de la sphère européo-centriste et judéo-chrétienne.

    Premier pays européen par l’importance de sa communauté musulmane, la France est aussi, proportionnellement à sa superficie et à sa population, le plus important foyer musulman du monde occidental. Elle compte davantage de musulmans que pas moins de huit pays membres de la Ligue arabe (Liban, Koweït, Qatar, Bahreïn, Emirats Arabes Unis, Palestine, Iles Comores et Djibouti). Elle pourrait, à ce titre, justifier d’une adhésion à l’Organisation de la #Conférence_Islamique (OCI), le forum politique panislamique regroupant cinquante deux Etats de divers continents ou à tout le moins disposer d’un siège d’observateur.

    L’intégration présuppose une conjonction d’apports et non une amputation de la matrice identitaire de base. La troisième génération issue de l’immigration est certes extrêmement sensible à son environnement international comme en témoignent les flambées de violence à caractère confessionnel en rapport avec l’intifada palestinienne, la guerre du Golfe (1990-91) ou encore la guerre d’Afghanistan (2001-2002), la guerre d’Irak et la guerre du Liban (2006).

    Elle n’en demeure pas moins porteuse d’une dynamique interculturelle en raison de ses origines, de son profil culturel et de ses croyances religieuses.
    Facteur d’intermédiation socioculturelle, les bougnoules des temps anciens, #sauvageons des temps modernes, paraissent devoir tenir leur revanche dans leur vocation à devenir de véritables « passeurs de la #Francophonie », l’avant-garde de « l’arabofrancophonie culturelle » (10) que la France s’ingénie tant à mettre sur pied afin de faire pièce à l’hégémonie anglo-américaine et de favoriser le dialogue des cultures par le dépassement de son passé colonial.

    A l’entame du IIIème millénaire, la « patrie de la mémoire courte » souffre d’évidence d’un blocage culturel et psychologique marqué par l’absence de fluidité sociale. Reflet d’une grave crise d’identité, ce blocage est, paradoxalement, en contradiction avec la configuration pluriethnique de la population française, en contradiction avec l’apport culturel de l’immigration, en contradiction avec les besoins démographiques de la France, en contradiction enfin avec l’ambition de la France de faire de la Francophonie, l’élément fédérateur d’une constellation pluriculturelle ayant vocation à faire contrepoids à l’hégémonie planétaire anglo-saxonne, le gage de son influence future dans le monde.
    .
    Conclusion
    Cinq ans après la bourrasque lepéniste aux présidentielles françaises de 2002, alors que la France s’apprête, en 2007, à se choisir un nouveau président, il m’a paru salutaire de pointer les incohérences françaises. De démystifier le discours politique officiel, et, au delà du clivage droite-gauche de la classe politique française, de recentrer le débat sur le fait migratoire en mettant l’imaginaire français à l’épreuve des faits historiques et de la réalité quotidienne nationale en vue d’apporter ma contribution à la mutation post-coloniale de la France.

    L’exception française si hautement revendiquée d’une nation qui se réclame de la grandeur est antinomique d’une culture de l’#impunité et de l’#amnésie, une culture érigée en un #dogme de gouvernement et, à ce titre, incompatible avec la déontologie du commandement et les impératifs de l’exemplarité.

    Mes remerciements renouvelés vont donc en premier lieu à Bruno Gollnisch, Philippe Val, le ministre des Affaires étrangères Philippe Douste Blazy, initiateur, en tant que député de Toulouse, du projet de loi controversé sur le « rôle positif » de la colonisation, ainsi que naturellement à Nicolas Sarkozy, pour leur inestimable contribution à la remise en ordre de ma formation universitaire, un exercice qui m’a permis de prendre conscience du « rôle positif » de la colonisation….. des Colonies par rapport à la Métropole et des colonisés à l’égard de leurs colonisateurs-oppresseurs.

    Merci aussi aux organisateurs de ce colloque qui m’ont donné la possibilité devant un auditoire savant, patient ( et indulgent à mon égard ), de procéder à une « déconstruction des mythes fondateurs de la grandeur française », pour le plus grand bénéfice du débat public contradictoire et de la recherche universitaire.

    Notes
    1) Contribution de l’auteur au colloque de SEPTEMES-LES-VALLONS 6- 7 OCTOBRE 2006, organisé par Festival TransMediterranée (fmed@wanadoo.fr) sur le thème « D’UNE RIVE A L’AUTRE, ECRIRE L’HISTOIRE, DECOLONISER LES MEMOIRES »
    2 Léon Blum invoquera son « trop d’amour » pour son pays « pour désavouer l’expansion de la pensée et de la civilisation française ». « Nous admettons le droit et même le devoir des races supérieures d’attirer à elles celles qui ne sont pas parvenues au même degré de culture », écrira-t-il dans le journal « Le Populaire » en date du 17 juillet 1925) cf « Quand Tocqueville légitimait les boucheries » par Olivier le Cour Grandmaison et « une histoire coloniale refoulée » par Pascal Blanchard, Sandrine Lemaire et Nicolas Bancel- Dossier général sous le thème « Les impasses du débat sur la torture en Algérie »-Le Monde Diplomatique juin 2001. Alexis de Tocqueville légitimera les boucheries considérant « le fait de s’emparer des hommes sans armes, des femmes et des enfants, comme des nécessités fâcheuses auxquelles tout peuple qui voudra faire la guerre aux Arabes sera obligé de se soumettre ». De son côté, Jules Ferry soutiendra dans un discours au Palais Bourbon le 29 juillet 1895 qu’ « il y a pour les races supérieures un droit par ce qu’il y a un devoir pour elle. Elles ont le devoir de civiliser les races inférieures ».
    3) « Zoos humains, de la Vénus Hottentote aux Reality Show » Ed. La Découverte Mars 2002, ouvrage réalisé sous la direction d’un collectif d’historiens et d’anthropologues membres de l’Association connaissance de l’Afrique contemporaine (Achac-Paris),Nicolas Bancel (historien, Université Paris XI), Pascal Blanchard (historien, chercheur CNRS), Gilles Boetsch (anthropologue, Directeur de recherche au CNRS), Eric Deroo (cinéaste, chercheur associé au CNRS) et Sandrine Lemaire (historienne, Institut européen de Florence). De 1877 à 1912, trente spectacles ethnologiques seront donnés au jardin d’acclimatation à Paris, puis aux expositions universelles de Paris de 1878 et de 1889 dont le clou pour celle de 1889 étaient aussi bien l’inauguration de la Tour Eiffel que la visite d’un « village nègre ». Suivront les expositions de Lyon (1894), les deux expositions coloniales de Marseille (1906 et 1922), enfin les grandes expositions de Paris de 1900 (diorama sur Madagascar, 50 millions de spectateurs) et de 1931 dont le commissaire général n’était autre que le Maréchal Lyautey. cf. « Le spectacle ordinaire des zoos humains » et « 1931. Tous à l’Expo » par Pascal Blanchard, Nicolas Bancel et Sandrine Lemaire, Manière de voir N°58 Juillet Août 2001, op cité.
    4 Dictionnaire Le Petit Robert 1996.
    5 « Du Bougnoule au sauvageon, voyage dans l’imaginaire français » René Naba-Editons l’Harmattan-2002
    6 « La République Xénophobe, 1917-1939 de la machine d’Etat au « crime de bureau », les révélations des archives » de Jean Pierre Deschodt et François Huguenin Editions JC Lattès septembre 2001.
    7 « Une théorie raciale des valeurs ? Démobilisation des travailleurs immigrés et mobilisation des stéréotypes en France à la fin de la grande guerre » par Mary Lewis, enseignante à la New York University, in « L’invention des populations », ouvrage collectif sous la direction d’Hervé Le Bras (Editions Odile Jacob).
    8 Jean Montaldo, auteur de deux ouvrages sur la corruption présidentielle : « Chirac et les 40 menteurs » Albin Michel 2006, « Mitterrand et les 40 voleurs » Albin Michel.
    9 l’armistice a été signé le 22 juin 1940 symboliquement à Rethondes au même endroit, dans le même wagon, que l’armistice du 11 novembre 1918. Toutefois l’entrevue de Montoire du 24 octobre 1940 entre Pétain et Hitler a scellé la collaboration entre la France et l’Allemagne nazie. Si l’armistice constituait une cessation des hostilités, la rencontre de Montoire a représenté dans l’ordre symbolique le voyage à Canossa de Pétain et constitué en fait une capitulation dans la mesure où Pétain a cautionné la collaboration avec le régime nazi quand bien même l’Allemagne reniant ses promesses avait annexé l’Alsace-lorraine, août 1940.
    10 « Arabo-francophonie culturelle : l’expression a été forgée en 1995-1996 par Stellio Farangis, ancien secrétaire général du Haut Conseil de la Francophonie.


  • WATCH | “There is a minefield sign and the migrants will go into this area because they know the police won’t be there”. Hans von der Brelie (@euronewsreport) is reporting from the Bosnia-Herzegovina border.

    https://twitter.com/euronews/status/1058409250043633671

    #Bonsie_Herzégovine #Bosnie #migrations #asile #réfugiés #mines_anti-personnel #frontières #Croatie

    Ici le reportage:
    On the ground at the Bosnian-Croatian border where migrant tensions are rising

    Tensions are rising on the Bosnian-Croatian border, where scores of migrants are demanding entry to the European Union, amid reports this week of fresh police clashes, plummeting temperatures and inadequate living conditions.

    Thousands of migrants and refugees fleeing wars and poverty in North Africa and Asia are sleeping rough near the border, which they hope to cross to gain access to the EU.

    Several people were injured on Wednesday in clashes with Croatian police, with migrants accusing officers of beating them and smashing their phones.

    Meanwhile, Doctors Without Borders warned that “as temperatures drop the situation becomes more difficult and tensions are rising.”

    Euronews correspondent Hans von der Brelie is at the scene. Take a look at his pictures and videos below to find out what is really happening on the ground:
    https://twitter.com/euronews/status/1058409250043633671
    Matiola and Nazir want to enter the European Union without visas. However, they can’t cross the well-protected Bosnian border with Croatia.

    They are stuck in the northwestern part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in Bihac, sleeping rough — protected against rain by plastic sheets.

    Tensions are rising on the Bosnian-Croatian border, where scores of migrants are demanding entry to the European Union, amid reports this week of fresh police clashes, plummeting temperatures and inadequate living conditions.

    Thousands of migrants and refugees fleeing wars and poverty in North Africa and Asia are sleeping rough near the border, which they hope to cross to gain access to the EU.

    Several people were injured on Wednesday in clashes with Croatian police, with migrants accusing officers of beating them and smashing their phones.

    Meanwhile, Doctors Without Borders warned that “as temperatures drop the situation becomes more difficult and tensions are rising.”

    Euronews correspondent Hans von der Brelie is at the scene. Take a look at his pictures and videos below to find out what is really happening on the ground:

    Matiola and Nazir want to enter the European Union without visas. However, they can’t cross the well-protected Bosnian border with Croatia.

    They are stuck in the northwestern part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in Bihac, sleeping rough — protected against rain by plastic sheets.

    A torn EU umbrella lays on top of destroyed tents and garbage in a public park of #Bihac.

    Hundreds of migrants had put their tents here, but they are no longer tolerated and the camp was dismantled.


    Migrants rebuild a shelter in Bihac park.

    These friends from the Kurdish part of Iraq have stayed together throughout the difficult journey. They dream of building a future in Germany or France.

    This is 24-year-old Muhamed Suliman. He worked as a taxi driver in Dubai before heading towards Europe. It was "too hot to stay there. Not enough pay. Too many fines,” he said.

    Suliman said his dream is to reach Italy, but there is no way to cross into Croatia.

    “I will try again. Again and again,” he said.

    Wearing plastic sandals, he said Croatian police took his shoes.


    The remains of a dismantled tent camp in Bihac park.

    Kurdish Iraqi migrants discuss their broken smartphone. “The Croatian police smashed it,” they said.

    Ageed, Muhemed, Jalal, Karwan, Lawin, Ahmad, Tahiro are from Iraq. They speak Kurdish.

    They have been staying for many weeks in the public park of Bihac, the starting point to cross illegally over the external EU border.

    They have tried several times to enter Croatia but were always caught by border guards.

    Muhamed claims he was surrounded by seven Croatian policemen and beaten up.

    This is a former students dormitory building in Bihac park, where almost 1,000 migrants and refugees sleep rough. They mainly come from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Northern Africa, Bangladesh, Iran and Iraq.

    People cook on an open fire in front of a former students’ dormitory in Bihac.

    The migrants from Pakistan are aiming to cross the nearby external EU border illegally into Croatia and travel further towards Italy, Germany, France and Spain.

    This official tries to detect migrants crossing into Croatia illegally every day and night.

    Ivana and Josip are two of 6,300 police officers controlling the Croatian border with Bosnia and Herzegovina.

    As it prepares to join the EU’s Schengen zone soon, Croatia has invested heavily in human resources.

    “We have really a lot of colleagues around here at the external border of the EU”, Ivana and Josip told Euronews.

    This is just one out of many watchtowers and observation posts on the Croatian side of the external EU border with Bosnia and Herzegovina.

    “No need to build a border fence here,” says Damir Butina, head of the border police unit in Cetingrad.

    This is the famous “#green_border” between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The tiny creek marks the exact borderline.

    The left side of the picture is Croatia, the right is Bosnia and Herzegovina.

    Dozens of migrants try to cross the border every day and every night. While there is no fence, there is hidden high tech surveillance all around. You move — and you will be detected.

    https://www.euronews.com/2018/11/02/on-the-ground-at-the-bosnian-croatian-border-where-migrant-tensions-are-ri
    #frontière_verte #militarisation_des_frontières


  • Comment nous ne gagnerons jamais en Afghanistan
    http://www.dedefensa.org/article/comment-nous-ne-gagnerons-jamais-en-afghanistan

    Comment nous ne gagnerons jamais en Afghanistan

    Pour la première fois depuis 17 ans que dure cette guerre réputée “sans fin” et complètement futile quoiqu’affreusement sanglante, un commandant en chef US a déclaré qu’il ne voyait pas la possibilité d’une victoire militaire (US/OTAN) en Afghanistan, et qu’il allait falloir parvenir à une solution politique avec les talibans. Cela n’est pas une chose acquise, puisqu’il semblerait bien que les talibans n’envisagent pas de négociations dans ce sens. Pour eux, il y a une autre option à envisager : une défaite de l’envahisseur USA/OTAN.

    Miller vient juste d’arriver à son commandement. Il a échappé de justesse à la mort dans un attentat, ce qui peut effectivement l’avoir conduit, non seulement à une telle évaluation, mais surtout à la déclaration publique de (...)


  • Dernier rapport de « Inspector General for #Afghanistan Reconstruction » (SIGAR) : les #talibans, les trafiquants de drogue et les contractuels privés des #Etats-Unis ne se sont jamais aussi bien portés

    The Taliban is stronger now than at any time since Afghanistan war
    https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2018/11/1/afghan-forces-losing-kabul-control-to-taliban-us-watchdog

    “From the period of May 1 to the most current data as of October 1, 2018, the average number of casualties the (Afghan forces) suffered is the greatest it has ever been during like periods,” it said. 

    The report also noted that “the Taliban now controls more territory than at any time since 2001”.

    Afghanistan : le contrôle des autorités au plus bas depuis 2015, selon un rapport - L’Orient-Le Jour
    https://www.lorientlejour.com/article/1141602/afghanistan-le-controle-des-autorites-au-plus-bas-depuis-2015-selon-u

    Military contractor received $1.6 billion to advise Afghans but results unknown | Ottawa Citizen
    https://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/defence-watch/military-contractor-received-1-6-billion-to-advise-afghans-but-result

    The Afghan mission continues to be a money pit for the U.S. government and a cash cow for private military contractors. On Wednesday, the U.S. government’s Afghan mission watchdog produced a report on the Pentagon program to advise the Afghan Ministry of Defence (MOD) and the Afghan Ministry of the Interior (MOI).

    Afghanistan : un rapport déplore le cuisant échec de Washington dans la lutte contre l’opium — RT en français
    https://francais.rt.com/international/55077-afghanistan-rapport-denonce-retentissant-echec-washington-dans-lu

    Washington a dépensé 8,8 milliards de dollars depuis 2002 contre le trafic de drogue, selon un organisme public américain. Résultat ? La production d’opium a connu un essor rapide, permettant aux talibans de tenir tête à Kaboul.


  • 56,800 migrant dead and missing : ’They are human beings’

    One by one, five to a grave, the coffins are buried in the red earth of this ill-kept corner of a South African cemetery. The scrawl on the cheap wood attests to their anonymity: “Unknown B/Male.”

    These men were migrants from elsewhere in Africa with next to nothing who sought a living in the thriving underground economy of Gauteng province, a name that roughly translates to “land of gold.” Instead of fortune, many found death, their bodies unnamed and unclaimed — more than 4,300 in Gauteng between 2014 and 2017 alone.

    Some of those lives ended here at the Olifantsvlei cemetery, in silence, among tufts of grass growing over tiny placards that read: Pauper Block. There are coffins so tiny that they could belong only to children.

    As migration worldwide soars to record highs, far less visible has been its toll: The tens of thousands of people who die or simply disappear during their journeys, never to be seen again. In most cases, nobody is keeping track: Barely counted in life, these people don’t register in death , as if they never lived at all.

    An Associated Press tally has documented at least 56,800 migrants dead or missing worldwide since 2014 — almost double the number found in the world’s only official attempt to try to count them, by the U.N.’s International Organization for Migration. The IOM toll as of Oct. 1 was more than 28,500. The AP came up with almost 28,300 additional dead or missing migrants by compiling information from other international groups, requesting forensic records, missing persons reports and death records, and sifting through data from thousands of interviews with migrants.

    The toll is the result of migration that is up 49 percent since the turn of the century, with more than 258 million international migrants in 2017, according to the United Nations. A growing number have drowned, died in deserts or fallen prey to traffickers, leaving their families to wonder what on earth happened to them. At the same time, anonymous bodies are filling cemeteries around the world, like the one in Gauteng.

    The AP’s tally is still low. More bodies of migrants lie undiscovered in desert sands or at the bottom of the sea. And families don’t always report loved ones as missing because they migrated illegally, or because they left home without saying exactly where they were headed.

    The official U.N. toll focuses mostly on Europe, but even there cases fall through the cracks. The political tide is turning against migrants in Europe just as in the United States, where the government is cracking down heavily on caravans of Central Americans trying to get in . One result is that money is drying up for projects to track migration and its costs.

    For example, when more than 800 people died in an April 2015 shipwreck off the coast of Italy, Europe’s deadliest migrant sea disaster, Italian investigators pledged to identify them and find their families. More than three years later, under a new populist government, funding for this work is being cut off.

    Beyond Europe, information is even more scarce. Little is known about the toll in South America, where the Venezuelan migration is among the world’s biggest today, and in Asia, the top region for numbers of migrants.

    The result is that governments vastly underestimate the toll of migration, a major political and social issue in most of the world today.

    “No matter where you stand on the whole migration management debate....these are still human beings on the move,” said Bram Frouws, the head of the Mixed Migration Centre , based in Geneva, which has done surveys of more than 20,000 migrants in its 4Mi project since 2014. “Whether it’s refugees or people moving for jobs, they are human beings.”

    They leave behind families caught between hope and mourning, like that of Safi al-Bahri. Her son, Majdi Barhoumi, left their hometown of Ras Jebel, Tunisia, on May 7, 2011, headed for Europe in a small boat with a dozen other migrants. The boat sank and Barhoumi hasn’t been heard from since. In a sign of faith that he is still alive, his parents built an animal pen with a brood of hens, a few cows and a dog to stand watch until he returns.

    “I just wait for him. I always imagine him behind me, at home, in the market, everywhere,” said al-Bahari. “When I hear a voice at night, I think he’s come back. When I hear the sound of a motorcycle, I think my son is back.”

    ———————————————————————

    EUROPE: BOATS THAT NEVER ARRIVE

    Of the world’s migration crises, Europe’s has been the most cruelly visible. Images of the lifeless body of a Kurdish toddler on a beach, frozen tent camps in Eastern Europe, and a nearly numbing succession of deadly shipwrecks have been transmitted around the world, adding to the furor over migration.

    In the Mediterranean, scores of tankers, cargo boats, cruise ships and military vessels tower over tiny, crowded rafts powered by an outboard motor for a one-way trip. Even larger boats carrying hundreds of migrants may go down when soft breezes turn into battering winds and thrashing waves further from shore.

    Two shipwrecks and the deaths of at least 368 people off the coast of Italy in October 2013 prompted the IOM’s research into migrant deaths. The organization has focused on deaths in the Mediterranean, although its researchers plead for more data from elsewhere in the world. This year alone, the IOM has found more than 1,700 deaths in the waters that divide Africa and Europe.

    Like the lost Tunisians of Ras Jebel, most of them set off to look for work. Barhoumi, his friends, cousins and other would-be migrants camped in the seaside brush the night before their departure, listening to the crash of the waves that ultimately would sink their raft.

    Khalid Arfaoui had planned to be among them. When the group knocked at his door, it wasn’t fear that held him back, but a lack of cash. Everyone needed to chip in to pay for the boat, gas and supplies, and he was short about $100. So he sat inside and watched as they left for the beachside campsite where even today locals spend the night before embarking to Europe.

    Propelled by a feeble outboard motor and overburdened with its passengers, the rubber raft flipped, possibly after grazing rocks below the surface on an uninhabited island just offshore. Two bodies were retrieved. The lone survivor was found clinging to debris eight hours later.

    The Tunisian government has never tallied its missing, and the group never made it close enough to Europe to catch the attention of authorities there. So these migrants never have been counted among the dead and missing.

    “If I had gone with them, I’d be lost like the others,” Arfaoui said recently, standing on the rocky shoreline with a group of friends, all of whom vaguely planned to leave for Europe. “If I get the chance, I’ll do it. Even if I fear the sea and I know I might die, I’ll do it.”

    With him that day was 30-year-old Mounir Aguida, who had already made the trip once, drifting for 19 hours after the boat engine cut out. In late August this year, he crammed into another raft with seven friends, feeling the waves slam the flimsy bow. At the last minute he and another young man jumped out.

    “It didn’t feel right,” Aguida said.

    There has been no word from the other six — yet another group of Ras Jebel’s youth lost to the sea. With no shipwreck reported, no survivors to rescue and no bodies to identify, the six young men are not counted in any toll.

    In addition to watching its own youth flee, Tunisia and to a lesser degree neighboring Algeria are transit points for other Africans north bound for Europe. Tunisia has its own cemetery for unidentified migrants, as do Greece, Italy and Turkey. The one at Tunisia’s southern coast is tended by an unemployed sailor named Chamseddin Marzouk.

    Of around 400 bodies interred in the coastal graveyard since it opened in 2005, only one has ever been identified. As for the others who lie beneath piles of dirt, Marzouk couldn’t imagine how their families would ever learn their fate.

    “Their families may think that the person is still alive, or that he’ll return one day to visit,” Marzouk said. “They don’t know that those they await are buried here, in Zarzis, Tunisia.”

    ——————

    AFRICA: VANISHING WITHOUT A TRACE

    Despite talk of the ’waves’ of African migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean, as many migrate within Africa — 16 million — as leave for Europe. In all, since 2014, at least 18,400 African migrants have died traveling within Africa, according to the figures compiled from AP and IOM records. That includes more than 4,300 unidentified bodies in a single South African province, and 8,700 whose traveling companions reported their disappearance en route out of the Horn of Africa in interviews with 4Mi.

    When people vanish while migrating in Africa, it is often without a trace. The IOM says the Sahara Desert may well have killed more migrants than the Mediterranean. But no one will ever know for sure in a region where borders are little more than lines drawn on maps and no government is searching an expanse as large as the continental United States. The harsh sun and swirling desert sands quickly decompose and bury bodies of migrants, so that even when they turn up, they are usually impossible to identify .

    With a prosperous economy and stable government, South Africa draws more migrants than any other country in Africa. The government is a meticulous collector of fingerprints — nearly every legal resident and citizen has a file somewhere — so bodies without any records are assumed to have been living and working in the country illegally. The corpses are fingerprinted when possible, but there is no regular DNA collection.

    South Africa also has one of the world’s highest rates of violent crime and police are more focused on solving domestic cases than identifying migrants.

    “There’s logic to that, as sad as it is....You want to find the killer if you’re a policeman, because the killer could kill more people,” said Jeanine Vellema, the chief specialist of the province’s eight mortuaries. Migrant identification, meanwhile, is largely an issue for foreign families — and poor ones at that.

    Vellema has tried to patch into the police missing persons system, to build a system of electronic mortuary records and to establish a protocol where a DNA sample is taken from every set of remains that arrive at the morgue. She sighs: “Resources.” It’s a word that comes up 10 times in a half-hour conversation.

    So the bodies end up at Olifantsvlei or a cemetery like it, in unnamed graves. On a recent visit by AP, a series of open rectangles awaited the bodies of the unidentified and unclaimed. They did not wait long: a pickup truck drove up, piled with about 10 coffins, five per grave. There were at least 180 grave markers for the anonymous dead, with multiple bodies in each grave.

    The International Committee of the Red Cross, which is working with Vellema, has started a pilot project with one Gauteng morgue to take detailed photos, fingerprints, dental information and DNA samples of unidentified bodies. That information goes to a database where, in theory, the bodies can be traced.

    “Every person has a right to their dignity. And to their identity,” said Stephen Fonseca, the ICRC regional forensic manager.

    ————————————

    THE UNITED STATES: “THAT’S HOW MY BROTHER USED TO SLEEP”

    More than 6,000 miles (9,000 kilometers) away, in the deserts that straddle the U.S.-Mexico border, lie the bodies of migrants who perished trying to cross land as unforgiving as the waters of the Mediterranean. Many fled the violence and poverty of Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador or Mexico. Some are found months or years later as mere skeletons. Others make a last, desperate phone call and are never heard from again.

    In 2010 the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team and the local morgue in Pima County, Ariz., began to organize efforts to put names to the anonymous bodies found on both sides of the border. The “Border Project” has since identified more than 183 people — a fraction of the total.

    At least 3,861 migrants are dead and missing on the route from Mexico to the United States since 2014, according to the combined AP and IOM total. The tally includes missing person reports from the Colibri Center for Human Rights on the U.S. side as well as the Argentine group’s data from the Mexican side. The painstaking work of identification can take years, hampered by a lack of resources, official records and coordination between countries — and even between states.

    For many families of the missing, it is their only hope, but for the families of Juan Lorenzo Luna and Armando Reyes, that hope is fading.

    Luna, 27, and Reyes, 22, were brothers-in-law who left their small northern Mexico town of Gomez Palacio in August 2016. They had tried to cross to the U.S. four months earlier, but surrendered to border patrol agents in exhaustion and were deported.

    They knew they were risking their lives — Reyes’ father died migrating in 1995, and an uncle went missing in 2004. But Luna, a quiet family man, wanted to make enough money to buy a pickup truck and then return to his wife and two children. Reyes wanted a job where he wouldn’t get his shoes dirty and could give his newborn daughter a better life.

    Of the five who left Gomez Palacio together, two men made it to safety, and one man turned back. The only information he gave was that the brothers-in-law had stopped walking and planned to turn themselves in again. That is the last that is known of them.

    Officials told their families that they had scoured prisons and detention centers, but there was no sign of the missing men. Cesaria Orona even consulted a fortune teller about her missing son, Armando, and was told he had died in the desert.

    One weekend in June 2017, volunteers found eight bodies next to a military area of the Arizona desert and posted the images online in the hopes of finding family. Maria Elena Luna came across a Facebook photo of a decaying body found in an arid landscape dotted with cactus and shrubs, lying face-up with one leg bent outward. There was something horribly familiar about the pose.

    “That’s how my brother used to sleep,” she whispered.

    Along with the bodies, the volunteers found a credential of a boy from Guatemala, a photo and a piece of paper with a number written on it. The photo was of Juan Lorenzo Luna, and the number on the paper was for cousins of the family. But investigators warned that a wallet or credential could have been stolen, as migrants are frequently robbed.

    “We all cried,” Luna recalled. “But I said, we cannot be sure until we have the DNA test. Let’s wait.”

    Luna and Orona gave DNA samples to the Mexican government and the Argentine group. In November 2017, Orona received a letter from the Mexican government saying that there was the possibility of a match for Armando with some bone remains found in Nuevo Leon, a state that borders Texas. But the test was negative.

    The women are still waiting for results from the Argentine pathologists. Until then, their relatives remain among the uncounted.

    Orona holds out hope that the men may be locked up, or held by “bad people.” Every time Luna hears about clandestine graves or unidentified bodies in the news, the anguish is sharp.

    “Suddenly all the memories come back,” she said. “I do not want to think.”

    ————————

    SOUTH AMERICA: “NO ONE WANTS TO ADMIT THIS IS A REALITY”

    The toll of the dead and the missing has been all but ignored in one of the largest population movements in the world today — that of nearly 2 million Venezuelans fleeing from their country’s collapse. These migrants have hopped buses across the borders, boarded flimsy boats in the Caribbean, and — when all else failed — walked for days along scorching highways and freezing mountain trails. Vulnerable to violence from drug cartels, hunger and illness that lingers even after reaching their destination, they have disappeared or died by the hundreds.

    “They can’t withstand a trip that hard, because the journey is very long,” said Carlos Valdes, director of neighboring Colombia’s national forensic institute. “And many times, they only eat once a day. They don’t eat. And they die.” Valdes said authorities don’t always recover the bodies of those who die, as some migrants who have entered the country illegally are afraid to seek help.

    Valdes believes hypothermia has killed some as they trek through the mountain tundra region, but he had no idea how many. One migrant told the AP he saw a family burying someone wrapped in a white blanket with red flowers along the frigid journey.

    Marta Duque, 55, has had a front seat to the Venezuela migration crisis from her home in Pamplona, Colombia. She opens her doors nightly to provide shelter for families with young children. Pamplona is one of the last cities migrants reach before venturing up a frigid mountain paramo, one of the most dangerous parts of the trip for migrants traveling by foot. Temperatures dip well below freezing.

    She said inaction from authorities has forced citizens like her to step in.

    “Everyone just seems to pass the ball,” she said. “No one wants to admit this is a reality.”

    Those deaths are uncounted, as are dozens in the sea. Also uncounted are those reported missing in Colombia, Peru and Ecuador. In all at least 3,410 Venezuelans have been reported missing or dead in a migration within Latin America whose dangers have gone relatively unnoticed; many of the dead perished from illnesses on the rise in Venezuela that easily would have found treatment in better times.

    Among the missing is Randy Javier Gutierrez, who was walking through Colombia with a cousin and his aunt in hopes of reaching Peru to reunite with his mother.

    Gutierrez’s mother, Mariela Gamboa, said that a driver offered a ride to the two women, but refused to take her son. The women agreed to wait for him at the bus station in Cali, about 160 miles (257 kilometers) ahead, but he never arrived. Messages sent to his phone since that day four months ago have gone unread.

    “I’m very worried,” his mother said. “I don’t even know what to do.”

    ———————————

    ASIA: A VAST UNKNOWN

    The region with the largest overall migration, Asia, also has the least information on the fate of those who disappear after leaving their homelands. Governments are unwilling or unable to account for citizens who leave for elsewhere in the region or in the Mideast, two of the most common destinations, although there’s a growing push to do so.

    Asians make up 40 percent of the world’s migrants, and more than half of them never leave the region. The Associated Press was able to document more than 8,200 migrants who disappeared or died after leaving home in Asia and the Mideast, including thousands in the Philippines and Indonesia.

    Thirteen of the top 20 migration pathways from Asia take place within the region. These include Indian workers heading to the United Arab Emirates, Bangladeshis heading to India, Rohingya Muslims escaping persecution in Myanmar, and Afghans crossing the nearest border to escape war. But with large-scale smuggling and trafficking of labor, and violent displacements, the low numbers of dead and missing indicate not safe travel but rather a vast unknown.

    Almass was just 14 when his widowed mother reluctantly sent him and his 11-year-old brother from their home in Khost, Afghanistan, into that unknown. The payment for their trip was supposed to get them away from the Taliban and all the way to Germany via a chain of smugglers. The pair crammed first into a pickup with around 40 people, walked for a few days at the border, crammed into a car, waited a bit in Tehran, and walked a few more days.

    His brother Murtaza was exhausted by the time they reached the Iran-Turkey border. But the smuggler said it wasn’t the time to rest — there were at least two border posts nearby and the risk that children far younger travelling with them would make noise.

    Almass was carrying a baby in his arms and holding his brother’s hand when they heard the shout of Iranian guards. Bullets whistled past as he tumbled head over heels into a ravine and lost consciousness.

    Alone all that day and the next, Almass stumbled upon three other boys in the ravine who had also become separated from the group, then another four. No one had seen his brother. And although the younger boy had his ID, it had been up to Almass to memorize the crucial contact information for the smuggler.

    When Almass eventually called home, from Turkey, he couldn’t bear to tell his mother what had happened. He said Murtaza couldn’t come to the phone but sent his love.

    That was in early 2014. Almass, who is now 18, hasn’t spoken to his family since.

    Almass said he searched for his brother among the 2,773 children reported to the Red Cross as missing en route to Europe. He also looked for himself among the 2,097 adults reported missing by children. They weren’t on the list.

    With one of the world’s longest-running exoduses, Afghans face particular dangers in bordering countries that are neither safe nor welcoming. Over a period of 10 months from June 2017 to April 2018, 4Mi carried out a total of 962 interviews with Afghan migrants and refugees in their native languages around the world, systematically asking a series of questions about the specific dangers they had faced and what they had witnessed.

    A total of 247 migrant deaths were witnessed by the interviewed migrants, who reported seeing people killed in violence from security forces or starving to death. The effort is the first time any organization has successfully captured the perils facing Afghans in transit to destinations in Asia and Europe.

    Almass made it from Asia to Europe and speaks halting French now to the woman who has given him a home in a drafty 400-year-old farmhouse in France’s Limousin region. But his family is lost to him. Their phone number in Afghanistan no longer works, their village is overrun with Taliban, and he has no idea how to find them — or the child whose hand slipped from his grasp four years ago.

    “I don’t know now where they are,” he said, his face anguished, as he sat on a sun-dappled bench. “They also don’t know where I am.”

    https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/global-lost-56800-migrants-dead-missing-years-58890913
    #décès #morts #migrations #réfugiés #asile #statistiques #chiffres #monde #Europe #Asie #Amérique_latine #Afrique #USA #Etats-Unis #2014 #2015 #2016 #2017 #2018
    ping @reka @simplicissimus


  • Refugee doctors programme could boost GP workforce

    Refugee doctors will be trained to work in general practice under a scheme set to launch this winter.

    The first-of-its-kind programme is being set up by BMA charities chairman Dr Andrew Mowat - who hopes some of the hundreds of refugee doctors living in the UK can be encouraged to take up GP careers.

    ‘I am setting up a refugee doctor programme in north-east Lincolnshire and we are just about ready to go,’ Dr Mowat told GPonline. ‘It’s going to be focused particularly on primary care with most of the placements in primary care.

    ‘We are desperately short of GPs,’ Dr Mowat added. ‘It is my hope that by giving refugee doctors who have come to the UK a positive experience of general practice to start with, by saying: “This is the place where you were welcome”, that they will come back after their training is complete and say: “Do you know what, I quite fancy going into primary care”.’
    GP workforce

    The scheme, set up by Lincolnshire LMC, Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust and North East Lincolnshire CCG, with funding from Health Education Yorkshire & Humber - aims to recruit 10 refugee doctors this winter and then to expand. Doctors will be offered community placements and ’mentors, tutors and supporters drawn equally from primary care as from hospital care’.

    The refugee scheme comes as the number of full-time equivalent GPs in England is continuing to fall, with more than 500 leaving the workforce in the three months to June 2018.

    Lincolnshire is feeling the effects of the GP workforce crisis particularly keenly, Dr Mowat said, with roughly 50-70 vacancies in general practice across the county.

    Hundreds of refugee doctors are in the UK, but many are currently not in work. The BMA has 640 doctors registered with its refugee doctors initiative - only around 100 of whom have gone on to work in the NHS, according to Dr Mowat.

    Research commissioned by the BMA has shown that it costs almost £300,000 to train one foundation year (FY) 2 doctor in the UK - compared with just £25,000 to retrain a refugee doctor into work.
    Medical training

    Dr Mowat said the Lincolnshire scheme would start with doctors only, and could expand later to help other refugee health professionals into work. Existing refugee schemes were based in major cities, he added - and rurality could be a ’unique selling point’ for the programme.

    Dr Ekta Elston, medical director of NHS North East Lincolnshire CCG, said: ’Supporting doctors who have had to leave their own countries to continue to use their valuable skills for the benefit of people in North East Lincolnshire is a very welcome development. This will add additional clinical capacity to our local health system.’

    A spokesperson for Health Education England (HEE) said: ‘A significant number of health professionals who are settled in the UK arrive with a wealth of experience, skills and knowledge and can provide the NHS workforce with quality staffing which in return benefits patient care.’

    A recent report from London-based charity Building Bridges - one of the existing refugee doctor schemes - there is a ‘growing interest’ in general practice among refugee doctors even though many come from countries that ‘tend not to have well-developed primary care’.
    Doctor placements

    One practice that has offered placements to refugee doctors through Building Bridges is Gordon House surgery in Ealing. GP principal Dr Ravi Ramanathan told GPonline: ‘We have had two doctors so far, Aweed and Ayub, who are both from Afghanistan. They worked as healthcare assistants and note summarisers at the practice and were supervised by our senior nurses Marie and Robyn.

    ‘Both doctors enjoyed the attachment as they felt a sense of belonging in a large team and they significantly improved their English and understood motivations and workings of the NHS. We also found it very positive - they were well received by patients and fitted in well with the whole team.’

    Fahira Mulamehic, project manager for the refugee healthcare professionals programme at Building Bridges, said: ‘The programme provides excellent value for money and inclusion of refugee healthcare professionals (RHPs) into the NHS workforce has significant benefits in meeting gaps in the NHS.’

    Dr Mowat said primary care was ’ripe’ for a refugee training scheme. He sketched out how the Lincolnshire scheme would work: ‘You start with language skills and help them get through the first part of their language exam and then you introduce them to clinical practice. Once their language is coming on they go on to observation placements in selected units in the hospital, which are selected by their ability to teach. And I guess we have lots of examples of similar teaching environments in primary care with, for instance, medical student placements.’

    https://www.gponline.com/refugee-doctors-programme-boost-gp-workforce/article/1497336
    #réfugiés #asile #migrations #travail #intégration #intégration_professionnelle #médecins #UK #Angleterre



  • Dire la #violence des #frontières. Mises en mots de la migration vers l’Europe

    Considérant les pratiques langagières comme partie intégrante des pratiques migratoires, ce dossier s’intéresse aux mises en mots de la #mort et de la violence aux frontières dans le cadre des migrations vers l’Europe. Ces mises en mots sont appréhendées à différents niveaux, qu’il s’agisse de leurs productions depuis les espaces institutionnels (organisations internationales, espaces politiques à l’échelle européenne ou étatique) ou de leurs réceptions par les migrants, au cours de leur voyage vers l’Europe ou après coup, lorsqu’ils y sont arrivés, ou encore de retour dans leur pays de résidence après une expulsion. L’approche par le #langage, correspondant à la fois à une prise en compte des discours produit sur les migrants et de la parole prise par ces derniers dans des cadres discursifs divers, est au cœur du dossier thématique de ce numéro : en déclinant la manière dont sont exprimées, dans des cadres discursifs divers, les mises en mots de la mort sociale, de la disparition, de l’arbitraire institutionnel, ou encore du sécuritaire et de l’humanitaire, etc., cette perspective permet de penser l’objet frontière tout en offrant une grille de lecture des inégalités socio-spatiales à l’heure de la mondialisation.

    Cécile Canut et Anaïk Pian
    Éditorial [Texte intégral]
    Editorial
    Editorial
    Cécile Canut
    « Tu ne pleures pas, tu suis Dieu… » Les #aventuriers et le spectre de la mort [Résumé | Accès restreint]
    “You don’t cry, you follow God…” Adventurers and the Specter of Death
    « No lloras, sigues a Dios… » Los aventureros y el espectro de la muerte

    Anaïk Pian
    Les #espaces_discursifs de la frontière : mort et arbitraire dans le voyage vers l’Europe [Résumé | Accès restreint]
    Discursives Spaces of Border: Death and Arbitrariness in Journeys towards Europe
    Espacios discursivos de la frontera: la muerte y lo arbitrario en viajes hacia Europa

    Charles Heller et Antoine Pécoud
    Compter les morts aux frontières : des contre-statistiques de la société civile à la récupération (inter)gouvernementale [Résumé | Accès restreint]
    Counting Migrant Deaths at the Borders: From Civil Society’s Counter-statistics to (Inter)governmental Recuperation
    Contabilizar los muertos en las fronteras: de las contra-estadísticas de la sociedad civil a la recuperación (inter)gubernamental

    Jacinthe Mazzocchetti
    Dire la violence des frontières dans le rapport de force que constitue la procédure d’asile. Le cas d’Ali, de l’Afghanistan en Belgique [Résumé | Accès restreint]
    Telling the Violence of Borders in the Power Relations that Constitutes the Asylum Process. The Case of Ali, from Afghanistan to Belgium
    Contar la violencia de las fronteras en el equilibrio de poder representado por el procedimiento de asilo. El caso de Ali, de Afganistán a Bélgica

    Carolina Kobelinsky
    Exister au risque de disparaître. Récits sur la mort pendant la traversée vers l’Europe [Résumé | Accès restreint]
    Existing at Risk of Disappearing. Narratives on Death during Border Crossing
    Existir arriesgando desaparece. Relatos sobre la muerte durante la travesía hacia Europa

    Annastiina Kallius
    The East-South Axis: Legitimizing the “Hungarian Solution to Migration” [Résumé | Accès restreint]
    L’axe Est-Sud : légitimer la « solution hongroise à la migration »
    El eje Este-Sur: legitimación de la «solución húngara a la migración»

    https://journals.openedition.org/remi/8596
    #revue #mots #vocabulaire #terminologie


  • A #Lesbos, la dignité perdue des migrants afghans dans le camp de Moria - Asialyst
    https://asialyst.com/fr/2018/10/20/lesbos-dignite-perdue-migrants-afghans-camp-moria

    uir la guerre en Afghanistan, traverser mille morts et se retrouver parqués dans une île grecque. Et attendre. C’est le quotidien des migrants afghans arrivés à Lesbos en Grêce. Ici, le camp de Moria abrite la majorité des 10 000 demandeurs d’asile résidant sur l’île. Marine Jeannin et Sarah Samya Anfis sont parvenues à entrer illégalement dans ce camp interdit aux journalistes par peur des reportages alarmistes. Elles ont trouvé une communauté afghane en proie à la violence, et qui ne reçoit plus ni soins, ni justice.

    #migrations #asile #grèce #camps #méditerranée cc @cdb_77


  • Words matter. Is it @AP style to call migrants an “army”—above a photo of mothers tending to their infants and toddlers, no less? This is not only incorrect, but it enables a racist narrative sold by this @POTUS and his supporters. Armies invade. These people are running away.


    https://twitter.com/JamilSmith/status/1054163071785037824
    #armée #terminologie #préjugés #invasion #afflux #mots #vocabulaire #migrations #réfugiés #médias #journalisme #presse

    • #Polly_Pallister-Wilkins sur la marche de migrants qui a lieu en Amérique centrale...

      Dear media reporting on the Central American migrant caravan, can you please be attentive to how you talk about it? 1/n
      People are walking, walking not pouring, flowing, or streaming. Walking. They are walking along roads, they will be tired, hungry, their feet will hurt, they will have blisters and sore joints. They are not a natural liquid phenomenon governed by the force of gravity. 2/n
      Their walking is conditioned by the infrastructures they move along like roads, the physical geographies they traverse like hills and rivers and the human controls they encounter like border controls and police checkpoints. 3/n
      All of these things are risky, they make the walk, the journey more difficult and dangerous, esepcially the police checkpoints and the border controls. These risks are the reason they are travelling as a caravan, as a large group attempting to minimise the risks of controls 4/n
      And the risks from gangs and criminals that migrants on their journeys routinely face. Their journey is a deeply embodied one, and one that is deeply conditioned both by the violence they are leaving and the violence of the journey itself. 5/n
      So media please try and reflect this in your storytelling. These people are not a river obeying gravity. They have made an active yet conditioned choice to move. When they encounter a block in their path this can be deadly. It can detain, deport, injure, rape, or kill. 6/n
      And these blockages are not boulders in a riverbed around which the river flows. These blockages, these #checkpoints, border controls or police patrols are human blockages, they are not natural. So please try and reflect the political structures of this journey. Please. End/
      Addendum: there is a long history of caravans as a form political resistance in Central America.

      https://twitter.com/PollyWilkins/status/1054267257944227840
      #marche #migrations #Honduras #Amérique_centrale #mots #vocabulaire #terminologie #média #journalisme #presse #caravane #métaphores_liquides #risque #gravité #mouvement #contrôles_frontaliers #blocages #barrières #résistance #Mexique

    • Migrants travel in groups for a simple reason: safety

      A caravan of Central American migrants traveling to through Mexico to the United States to seek asylum is about halfway through its journey.

      The caravan began on Oct. 13 in Honduras with 200 people. As it has moved through Honduras, Guatemala and now Mexico, its ranks have grown to over 7,000, according to an estimate by the International Organization of Migration.

      The migrants have been joined by representatives from humanitarian organizations like the Mexican Red Cross providing medical assistance and human rights groups that monitor the situation.

      Journalists are there, too, and their reporting has caught the attention of President Donald Trump.

      He has claimed that the caravan’s ranks probably hide Middle Eastern terrorists. Trump later acknowledged there is no evidence of this, but conservative media outlets have nevertheless spread the message.

      It is reasonable for Americans to have security concerns about immigration. But as a scholar of forced migration, I believe it’s also important to consider why migrants travel in groups: their own safety.
      Safety in numbers

      The Central Americans in the caravan, like hundreds of thousands of people who flee the region each year, are escaping extreme violence, lack of economic opportunity and growing environmental problems, including drought and floods, back home.

      Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico have some of the world’s highest murder rates. According to Doctors Without Borders, which provides medical care in crisis zones, 68 percent of the migrants and refugees it surveyed in Mexico had experienced violence. Nearly one-third of women were sexually abused.

      Whether crossing Central America, the Sahara desert or the mountains of Afghanistan, migrants are regularly extorted by criminals, militias and corrupt immigration officials who know migrants make easy targets: They carry cash but not weapons.

      Large groups increase migrants’ chance of safe passage, and they provide some sense of community and solidarity on the journey, as migrants themselves report.
      Publicizing the dangers they flee

      Large groups of migrants also attract media coverage. As journalists write about why people are on the move, they shed light on Central America’s many troubles.

      Yet headlines about huge migrant caravans may misrepresent trends at the U.S.-Mexico border, where migration is actually decreasing.

      While the number of Central American families and children seeking asylum in the U.S. has increased in the past two years, Mexican economic migrants are crossing the border at historically low levels.

      And while most migrant caravan members hope to seek asylum in the U.S., recent history shows many will stay in Mexico.

      In response to Trump’s immigration crackdown, Mexican president-elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador has promised to welcome Central American refugees — and try to keep them safe.


      https://theconversation.com/migrants-travel-in-groups-for-a-simple-reason-safety-105621

      #sécurité

    • Trump’s Caravan Hysteria Led to This

      The president and his supporters insisted that several thousand Honduran migrants were a looming menace—and the Pittsburgh gunman took that seriously.

      On Tuesday, October 16, President Donald Trump started tweeting.

      “The United States has strongly informed the President of Honduras that if the large Caravan of people heading to the U.S. is not stopped and brought back to Honduras, no more money or aid will be given to Honduras, effective immediately!”

      “We have today informed the countries of Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador that if they allow their citizens, or others, to journey through their borders and up to the United States, with the intention of entering our country illegally, all payments made to them will STOP (END)!”

      Vice President Mike Pence also tweeted:

      “Spoke to President Hernandez of Honduras about the migrant caravan heading to the U.S. Delivered strong message from @POTUS: no more aid if caravan is not stopped. Told him U.S. will not tolerate this blatant disregard for our border & sovereignty.”

      The apparent impetus for this outrage was a segment on Fox News that morning that detailed a migrant caravan thousands of miles away in Honduras. The caravan, which began sometime in mid-October, is made up of refugees fleeing violence in their home country. Over the next few weeks, Trump did his best to turn the caravan into a national emergency. Trump falsely told his supporters that there were “criminals and unknown Middle Easterners” in the caravan, a claim that had no basis in fact and that was meant to imply that terrorists were hiding in the caravan—one falsehood placed on another. Defense Secretary James Mattis ordered more troops to the border. A Fox News host took it upon herself to ask Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen whether there was “any scenario under which if people force their way across the border they could be shot at,” to which Nielsen responded, “We do not have any intention right now to shoot at people.”

      Pence told Fox News on Friday, “What the president of Honduras told me is that the caravan was organized by leftist organizations, political activists within Honduras, and he said it was being funded by outside groups, and even from Venezuela … So the American people, I think, see through this—they understand this is not a spontaneous caravan of vulnerable people.”

      The Department of Homeland Security’s Twitter account “confirmed” that within the caravan are people who are “gang members or have significant criminal histories,” without offering evidence of any such ties. Trump sought to blame the opposition party for the caravan’s existence. “Every time you see a Caravan, or people illegally coming, or attempting to come, into our Country illegally, think of and blame the Democrats for not giving us the votes to change our pathetic Immigration Laws!” Trump tweeted on October 22. “Remember the Midterms! So unfair to those who come in legally.”

      In the right-wing fever swamps, where the president’s every word is worshipped, commenters began amplifying Trump’s exhortations with new details. Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida wondered whether George Soros—the wealthy Jewish philanthropist whom Trump and several members of the U.S. Senate blamed for the protests against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, and who was recently targeted with a bomb—was behind the migrant caravan. NRATV, the propaganda organ of the National Rifle Association, linked two Republican obsessions, voter fraud and immigration. Chuck Holton told NRATV’s viewers that Soros was sending the caravan to the United States so the migrants could vote: “It’s telling that a bevy of left-wing groups are partnering with a Hungarian-born billionaire and the Venezuelan government to try to influence the 2018 midterms by sending Honduran migrants north in the thousands.” On CNN, the conservative commentator Matt Schlapp pointedly asked the anchor Alisyn Camerota, “Who’s paying for the caravan? Alisyn, who’s paying for the caravan?,” before later answering his own question: “Because of the liberal judges and other people that intercede, including George Soros, we have too much chaos at our southern border.” On Laura Ingraham’s Fox News show, one guest said, “These individuals are not immigrants—these are people that are invading our country,” as another guest asserted they were seeking “the destruction of American society and culture.”

      Peter Beinart: Trump shut programs to counter violent extremists

      In the meantime, much of the mainstream press abetted Trump’s effort to make the midterm election a referendum on the caravan. Popular news podcasts devoted entire episodes to the caravan. It remained on the front pages of major media websites. It was an overwhelming topic of conversation on cable news, where Trumpists freely spread disinformation about the threat the migrants posed, while news anchors displayed exasperation over their false claims, only to invite them back on the next day’s newscast to do it all over again.

      In reality, the caravan was thousands of miles and weeks away from the U.S. border, shrinking in size, and unlikely to reach the U.S. before the election. If the migrants reach the U.S., they have the right under U.S. law to apply for asylum at a port of entry. If their claims are not accepted, they will be turned away. There is no national emergency; there is no ominous threat. There is only a group of desperate people looking for a better life, who have a right to request asylum in the United States and have no right to stay if their claims are rejected. Trump is reportedly aware that his claims about the caravan are false. An administration official told the Daily Beast simply, “It doesn’t matter if it’s 100 percent accurate … this is the play.” The “play” was to demonize vulnerable people with falsehoods in order to frighten Trump’s base to the polls.

      Nevertheless, some took the claims of the president and his allies seriously. On Saturday morning, Shabbat morning, a gunman walked into the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh and killed 11 people. The massacre capped off a week of terrorism, in which one man mailed bombs to nearly a dozen Trump critics and another killed two black people in a grocery store after failing to force his way into a black church.

      Before committing the Tree of Life massacre, the shooter, who blamed Jews for the caravan of “invaders” and who raged about it on social media, made it clear that he was furious at HIAS, founded as the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, a Jewish group that helps resettle refugees in the United States. He shared posts on Gab, a social-media site popular with the alt-right, expressing alarm at the sight of “massive human caravans of young men from Honduras and El Salvador invading America thru our unsecured southern border.” And then he wrote, “HIAS likes to bring invaders in that kill our people. I can’t sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. Screw your optics, I’m going in.”

      The people killed on Saturday were killed for trying to make the world a better place, as their faith exhorts them to do. The history of the Jewish people is one of displacement, statelessness, and persecution. What groups like HIAS do in helping refugees, they do with the knowledge that comes from a history of being the targets of demagogues who persecute minorities in pursuit of power.

      Ordinarily, a politician cannot be held responsible for the actions of a deranged follower. But ordinarily, politicians don’t praise supporters who have mercilessly beaten a Latino man as “very passionate.” Ordinarily, they don’t offer to pay supporters’ legal bills if they assault protesters on the other side. They don’t praise acts of violence against the media. They don’t defend neo-Nazi rioters as “fine people.” They don’t justify sending bombs to their critics by blaming the media for airing criticism. Ordinarily, there is no historic surge in anti-Semitism, much of it targeted at Jewish critics, coinciding with a politician’s rise. And ordinarily, presidents do not blatantly exploit their authority in an effort to terrify white Americans into voting for their party. For the past few decades, most American politicians, Republican and Democrat alike, have been careful not to urge their supporters to take matters into their own hands. Trump did everything he could to fan the flames, and nothing to restrain those who might take him at his word.

      Many of Trump’s defenders argue that his rhetoric is mere shtick—that his attacks, however cruel, aren’t taken 100 percent seriously by his supporters. But to make this argument is to concede that following Trump’s statements to their logical conclusion could lead to violence against his targets, and it is only because most do not take it that way that the political violence committed on Trump’s behalf is as limited as it currently is.

      The Tree of Life shooter criticized Trump for not being racist or anti-Semitic enough. But with respect to the caravan, the shooter merely followed the logic of the president and his allies: He was willing to do whatever was necessary to prevent an “invasion” of Latinos planned by perfidious Jews, a treasonous attempt to seek “the destruction of American society and culture.”

      The apparent spark for the worst anti-Semitic massacre in American history was a racist hoax inflamed by a U.S. president seeking to help his party win a midterm election. There is no political gesture, no public statement, and no alteration in rhetoric or behavior that will change this fact. The shooter might have found a different reason to act on a different day. But he chose to act on Saturday, and he apparently chose to act in response to a political fiction that the president himself chose to spread and that his followers chose to amplify.

      As for those who aided the president in his propaganda campaign, who enabled him to prey on racist fears to fabricate a national emergency, who said to themselves, “This is the play”? Every single one of them bears some responsibility for what followed. Their condemnations of anti-Semitism are meaningless. Their thoughts and prayers are worthless. Their condolences are irrelevant. They can never undo what they have done, and what they have done will never be forgotten.

      https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2018/10/caravan-lie-sparked-massacre-american-jews/574213

    • Latin American asylum seekers hit US policy “wall”

      Trump’s new restrictions mean long waits simply to register claims.

      The movement of thousands of Central American asylum seekers and migrants north from Honduras towards the southern border of the United States has precipitated threats from US President Donald Trump – ahead of next week’s midterm elections – to block the group’s entry by deploying troops to the US-Mexican border.

      Under international law the United States is obligated to allow asylum seekers to enter and file claims. However, immigration officials at the country’s southern border have for months been shifting toward legally dubious practices that restrict people’s ability to file asylum claims.

      “Make no mistake, the administration is building a wall – one made of restrictionist policy rather than brick and mortar,” said Jason Boyd, policy counsel at the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).

      As a result, hundreds, possibly thousands, of asylum seekers have been left waiting for extended periods of time on the Mexican side of the border in need of shelter and basic services. Firm numbers for those affected are difficult to come by because no one is counting.

      Some of those turned away explore potentially dangerous alternatives. Aid and advocacy groups as well as the Department of Homeland Security say the wait has likely pushed some to attempt to enter the United States illegally, either with smugglers or on their own via perilous desert routes.

      While some of those in the so-called “migrant caravan” are searching for economic opportunity, others are fleeing gang violence, gender-based violence, political repression or unrest – all increasingly common factors in Central America and Mexico that push people to leave their homes.
      Menacing phone calls

      When people from the migrant caravan reach the southern border of the United States, they may find themselves in a similar position to Dolores Alzuri, 47, from Michoacan, a state in central Mexico.

      In late September, she was camped out with her husband, daughter, granddaughter, and aunt on the Mexican side of the DeConcini port of entry separating the twin cities of Nogales – one in the Mexican state of Sonora, the other in the US state of Arizona.

      Alzuri and her family were waiting for their turn to claim asylum in the United States, with only a police report in hand as proof of the threats they faced back home. Camping beside them on the pedestrian walkway just outside the grated metal door leading to the United States, nine other families waited to do the same.

      Over the preceding month Alzuri had received several menacing phone calls from strangers demanding money. In Michoacan, and many other parts of Mexico where criminal gangs have a strong presence, almost anybody can receive calls like these. You don’t know who’s on the other end of the line, Alzuri explained, but you do know the consequences of not following their orders.

      “If you do not give [money] to them, they kidnap you or they kidnap your family,” Alzuri said. “They destroy you. They kill you. That is why it is so scary to be in this country.”

      Other people she knew had received similar calls. She also knew that those who didn’t pay ended up dead – pictures of their bodies posted on Facebook as a macabre warning of what happens to those who resist.

      Fearing a similar fate, Alzuri packed her bags and her family and travelled north to ask for asylum in the United States. A friend had been granted asylum about nine months ago, and she had seen on television that other people were going, too. It seemed like the only way out.

      “I had a problem,” she said, referring to the phone calls. “They asked us for money, and since we did not give them money, they threatened us.”

      Before leaving her home, Alzuri said she filed a police report. But the authorities didn’t care enough to act on it, she said. “They are not going to risk their life for mine.”
      No way out

      Despite the danger at home, Alzuri and others in similar situations face an increasingly difficult time applying for asylum in the United States. At the Nogales crossing, asylum seekers must now wait up to a month simply to be allowed to set foot inside a border office where they can register their claims, aid workers there say.

      Those waiting are stuck in territory on the Mexican side that is controlled by gangs similar to the ones many are fleeing, though local aid groups have scrambled to find space in shelters, especially for women and children, so people will be safer while they wait.

      The situation hasn’t always been like this.

      In the past, asylum seekers were almost always admitted to register their claims the same day they arrived at the border. Since May, however, there has been a marked slowdown in registration.

      US Custom and Border Protection (CBP), the federal law enforcement agency responsible for screening people as they enter the country, says delays are due to a lack of capacity and space. But asylum advocates say similar numbers have arrived in previous years without causing a delay and the real reason for the slowdown is that CBP has shifted resources away from processing asylum seekers – not just in Nogales but across the southern US border – resulting in people being forced to wait for long periods or turned away altogether.

      This is happening despite the insistence of high-ranking Trump administration officials that asylum seekers present themselves at ports of entry or face criminal prosecution for crossing the border irregularly. Such contradictory policies, asylum advocates argue, are part of a broad-based effort by the Trump administration to dramatically reduce the number of people able to seek protection in the United States.

      “Our legal understanding is that they have the legal obligation to process asylum seekers as they arrive,” said Joanna Williams, director of education and advocacy at the Kino Border Initiative (KBI), a Nogales-based NGO. “There’s no room in the law for what they are doing right now.”
      A system in crisis

      In the past decade, migration across the southern border of the United States has undergone a dramatic change. Every year since the late 1970s US Border Patrol agents apprehended close to a million or more undocumented migrants entering the country. In 2007, that number began to fall, and last year there were just over 310,000 apprehensions – the lowest number since 1971.

      At the same time, the proportion of people entering the United States from the southern border to claim asylum has increased. Ten years ago, one out of every 100 people crossing the border was seeking humanitarian protection, according to a recent report published by the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), a non-partisan think tank in Washington DC. Today that number is about one in three.

      According to Boyd of AILA, the increase is being driven by ongoing humanitarian emergencies in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, an area of Central America known as the Northern Triangle. These countries have some of the highest homicide rates in the world and are wracked by gang violence, gender-based violence, extortion, and extra-judicial killings. “Many of the individuals and families arriving at the US southern border are literally fleeing for their lives,” said Boyd.

      But the system that is supposed to provide them protection is in crisis. Beginning in 2010 the number of asylum requests lodged in the United States started to balloon, mirroring an upward trend in global displacement. Last year, 79,000 people approached the US border saying they had a credible fear of returning to their home country, compared to 9,000 at the beginning of the decade.

      The increase in credible-fear claims, as well as asylum requests made by people already in the United States, has strained the system to a “crisis point”, according to the MPI report. This has led to a backlog of around 320,000 cases in US immigration courts and people having to wait many months, if not years, to receive a hearing and a decision.
      Crackdown

      Senior officials in the Trump administration, including the president, have consistently lumped asylum seekers and economic migrants together, positing that the United States is being “invaded” by a “massive influx of illegal aliens” across the southern border, and that the asylum system is subject to “systematic abuse” by people looking to gain easy entry to the country.

      People working on the ground with asylum seekers refute this. Eduardo Garcia is a communication coordinator at SOA Watch, an organisation that monitors the humanitarian impact of US policy in Latin America. He has spent time in Nogales speaking with people waiting to claim asylum.

      “The stories of many of the people we have talked to… are stories of people fleeing gang violence, are stories of people fleeing because one of their sons was killed, because one of their sons was threatened, because one of their family members [was] raped,” he said. “They have said they cannot go back to their countries. If they are sent back they are going to be killed.”

      Still, the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance policy on immigration – responsible for the recent child-separation crisis – has also included measures that have restricted access to asylum in the United States.

      In May, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Justice Department would begin criminally prosecuting everyone who irregularly crossed the US southern border, including asylum seekers. In June, that policy was followed by a decision that the United States would no longer consider gang and sexual violence – precisely the reasons so many people flee the Northern Triangle – as legitimate grounds for asylum. Around the same time, CBP appears to have deprioritised the processing of asylum seekers at ports of entry in favour of other responsibilities, leading to the long waits and people being turned away, according to humanitarian workers and a recent report by the DHS’s Office of Inspector General.

      And even as these restrictive policies were being put in place, Trump administration officials have been encouraging asylum seekers to try. “If you’re seeking asylum, go to a port of entry,” Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen said in an 18 June press conference. “You do not need to break the law of the United States to seek asylum.”

      Nogales, Mexico

      “I came here with the hope that if I asked for asylum I could be in the United States,” said Modesto, a 54-year-old from Chimaltenango, Guatemala. In mid-September he was sitting in a mess hall run a couple hundred meters from the US border run by KBI, which provides humanitarian assistance to migrants and asylum seekers.

      Modesto had already been in Nogales, Sonora for several months. Like Dolores Alzuri, he fled his home because criminal gangs had tried to extort money from him. “I worked a lot and was making a living in my country,” Modesto explained. “The problem in particular with the gangs is that they don’t let you work… If you have money they extort you. If you don’t have money they want to recruit you.” And people who don’t cooperate: “They’re dead,” he added.

      The situation Modesto found when he arrived in Nogales, Sonora was far from what he expected. For starters, there was the long wait at the border. But he also discovered that – as an adult travelling with his 18-year-old son – even once he entered the United States he would likely end up in a detention centre while his case slowly made its way through the overburdened immigration courts – a practice that has also increased under the Trump administration. “I don’t want to cross… and spend a year in prison when my family needs my help,” he said.

      Modesto is in some ways an exception, according to Williams of KBI. Many of the people arriving in Nogales, Sonora are families with children. Once in the United States they will likely be released from immigration detention with ankle monitoring bracelets to track their movements. These people often choose to wait and to claim asylum at the port of entry when there is space.

      After more than 100 people piled up to wait at the border in May, local humanitarian groups set up a system to organise and keep track of whose turn it was to submit an asylum claim to US immigration officials. They also scrambled to find spaces in shelters so people were not sleeping on the walkway over the weeks they needed to wait.

      Now, only people who are likely to enter soon are camped on the walkway. When IRIN visited, about 40 asylum seekers – mostly women and children – sat on one side of the walkway as a steady stream of people heading to the United States filtered by on the other. Some of the asylum seekers were new arrivals waiting to be taken to a shelter, while others had been sleeping there for days on thin mats waiting for their turn. Volunteers handed out clean clothing and served pasta, as a CBP agent opened and closed the metal gate leading to the United States, just a few tantalisingly short feet away.

      The slowdown of processing “leaves people stranded – in really dangerous situations sometimes – on the other side of the border, and completely violates our obligations under both domestic and international law,” said Katharina Obser, a senior policy adviser at the Women’s Refugee Commission, an NGO that advocates for women, children, and youth displaced by conflict and crisis.

      As a result, some people arrive, find out about the wait, and leave. “We’re fairly certain that those are individuals who then end up crossing the border through other means,” Williams said.

      The DHS Office of the Inspector General came to a similar conclusion, finding that the contradiction between Trump administration rhetoric and policy “may have led asylum seekers at ports of entry to attempt illegal border crossings.”
      Border-wide

      The situation in Nogales, Sonora is far from isolated, according to Boyd of the AILA. “Recent turnbacks of vulnerable asylum seekers have been documented throughout the US southern border,” he said, including at many ports of entry in Texas and California. In those states, asylum seekers have reported being stopped as they approach the border and told they cannot enter because immigration officials don’t have the capacity to process their claims.

      “Turnbacks form part of a comprehensive set of practices and policies advanced under this administration that appears aimed at shutting out asylum seekers from the United States,” Boyd continued.

      Meanwhile, people like Dolores Alzuri – and most likely some of the thousands of Central Americans who are travelling north from Honduras in the hope of claiming asylum – are left with little choice but to wait. Moving somewhere else in Mexico or returning home is not an option, said Alzuri. “The violence is the same in every state,” she said. And crossing the desert, “that’s a big danger.”

      She and her family don’t have a back-up plan. “Let’s hope that I do get [asylum], because I really do need it,” she said. “You don’t live comfortably in your own country anymore. You live in fear that something will happen to you. You can’t walk around on the streets because you feel that you’re being followed.”

      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/10/29/latin-american-asylum-seekers-hit-us-policy-wall
      #USA #Etats-Unis #fermeture_des_frontières #Mexique

      Commentaire Emmanuel Blanchar via la mailing-list Migreurop:

      Un article intéressant car il rappelle opportunément que la « caravane des migrants » en route vers les Etats-Unis est également composée de nombreuses personnes qui souhaiteraient pouvoir déposer des demandes d’asile. Or, si la frontières Mexique-USA est loin d’être encore mûrées, un mur administratif empêche déjà que les demandes d’asile puisse être déposées et traitées dans le respect des droits des requérant.e.s.

      #mur_administratif #asile

    • No es una caravana, es un dolor que camina

      La caravana de migrantes es sólo la primera manifestación pública y masiva de la crisis humanitaria en la que vive la mayoría de la población; negada por el gobierno, por la oligarquía, embajadas, organizaciones de la sociedad civil y por algunas agencias de cooperación que le hacen comparsa a la dictadura.

      Esta crisis humanitaria es provocada por el modelo económico neoliberal impuesto a sangre y fuego, que sólo pobreza y violencia ha llevado a las comunidades, que ante la ausencia de oportunidades y ante el acoso de los grupos criminales no tienen otra alternativa que la peligrosa e incierta ruta migratoria; prefieren morir en el camino que en sus barrios y colonias.

      El infierno en que se ha convertido Honduras tiene varios responsables. En primer el lugar el imperialismo, que a través de su embajada promueve la inestabilidad política en el país con el apoyo directo al dictador, que para granjearse ese apoyo les ha entregado el país, hasta el grado del despojo y de la ignominia, como puede observarse en los foros internacionales.

      Otro responsable es el dictador, que además de la incertidumbre que genera en lo económico, en lo político y en lo social, ha profundizado y llevado al extremo las políticas neoliberales, despojando de sus recursos a comunidades enteras, para dárselas a las transnacionales, principalmente norteamericanas y canadienses.

      La oligarquía corrupta, mediocre, salvaje, inepta y rapaz también es responsable de esta crisis humanitaria, quien se ha acostumbrado a vivir del presupuesto nacional a tal grado de convertir al Estado en su patrimonio, por medio de un ejército de ocupación, de diputados y presidentes serviles y títeres, que toman las decisiones no para el pueblo, sino que para sus insaciables intereses.

      Hay otro actor importante en esta crisis y es el Ejército Nacional, fiel sirviente de los intereses imperiales y de la oligarquía, que sólo sirve para consumir una gran tajada del presupuesto nacional y más que un ejército defensor y garante de la soberanía nacional es una fuerza de ocupación; listo para asesinar, torturar y matar aquellos que se oponen al dictador, al imperio y la oligarquía.

      Desgraciadamente esta caravana la conforman los miserables, los desheredados de la tierra, los parias: “los que crían querubes para el presidio y serafines para el burdel” como dijo en su poema, Los Parias, el poeta mexicano Salvador Díaz Mirón.

      Estos miserables y desheredados no huyen de la patria, la aman, la adoran y la llevan convertida en un dolor sobre sus hombros, huyen de los verdugos y carniceros que nos gobiernan y de los otros responsables de esta crisis humanitaria. Los que huyen aman a esta tierra más que los que nos quedamos.

      https://criterio.hn/2018/10/29/no-es-una-caravana-es-un-dolor-que-camina
      #douleur



  • The Vulnerability Contest

    Traumatized Afghan child soldiers who were forced to fight in Syria struggle to find protection in Europe’s asylum lottery.

    Mosa did not choose to come forward. Word had spread among the thousands of asylum seekers huddled inside Moria that social workers were looking for lone children among the general population. High up on the hillside, in the Afghan area of the chaotic refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos, some residents knew someone they suspected was still a minor. They led the aid workers to Mosa.

    The boy, whose broad and beardless face mark him out as a member of the Hazara ethnic group, had little reason to trust strangers. It was hard to persuade him just to sit with them and listen. Like many lone children, Mosa had slipped through the age assessment carried out on first arrival at Moria: He was registered as 27 years old. With the help of a translator, the social worker explained that there was still time to challenge his classification as an adult. But Mosa did not seem to be able to engage with what he was being told. It would take weeks to establish trust and reveal his real age and background.

    Most new arrivals experience shock when their hopes of a new life in Europe collide with Moria, the refugee camp most synonymous with the miserable consequences of Europe’s efforts to contain the flow of refugees and migrants across the Aegean. When it was built, the camp was meant to provide temporary shelter for fewer than 2,000 people. Since the European Union struck a deal in March 2016 with Turkey under which new arrivals are confined to Greece’s islands, Moria’s population has swollen to 9,000. It has become notorious for overcrowding, snowbound tents, freezing winter deaths, violent protests and suicides by adults and children alike.

    While all asylum systems are subjective, he said that the situation on Greece’s islands has turned the search for protection into a “lottery.”

    Stathis Poularakis is a lawyer who previously served for two years on an appeal committee dealing with asylum cases in Greece and has worked extensively on Lesbos. While all asylum systems are subjective, he said that the situation on Greece’s islands has turned the search for protection into a “lottery.”

    Asylum claims on Lesbos can take anywhere between six months and more than two years to be resolved. In the second quarter of 2018, Greece faced nearly four times as many asylum claims per capita as Germany. The E.U. has responded by increasing the presence of the European Asylum Support Office (EASO) and broadening its remit so that EASO officials can conduct asylum interviews. But the promises that EASO will bring Dutch-style efficiency conceal the fact that the vast majority of its hires are not seconded from other member states but drawn from the same pool of Greeks as the national asylum service.

    Asylum caseworkers at Moria face an overwhelming backlog and plummeting morale. A serving EASO official describes extraordinary “pressure to go faster” and said there was “so much subjectivity in the system.” The official also said that it was human nature to reject more claims “when you see every other country is closing its borders.”

    Meanwhile, the only way to escape Moria while your claim is being processed is to be recognized as a “vulnerable” case. Vulnerables get permission to move to the mainland or to more humane accommodation elsewhere on the island. The term is elastic and can apply to lone children and women, families or severely physically or mentally ill people. In all cases the onus is on the asylum seeker ultimately to persuade the asylum service, Greek doctors or the United Nations Refugee Agency that they are especially vulnerable.

    The ensuing scramble to get out of Moria has turned the camp into a vast “vulnerability contest,” said Poularakis. It is a ruthless competition that the most heavily traumatized are often in no condition to understand, let alone win.

    Twice a Refugee

    Mosa arrived at Moria in October 2017 and spent his first night in Europe sleeping rough outside the arrivals tent. While he slept someone stole his phone. When he awoke he was more worried about the lost phone than disputing the decision of the Frontex officer who registered him as an adult. Poularakis said age assessors are on the lookout for adults claiming to be children, but “if you say you’re an adult, no one is going to object.”

    Being a child has never afforded Mosa any protection in the past: He did not understand that his entire future could be at stake. Smugglers often warn refugee children not to reveal their real age, telling them that they will be prevented from traveling further if they do not pretend to be over 18 years old.

    Like many other Hazara of his generation, Mosa was born in Iran, the child of refugees who fled Afghanistan. Sometimes called “the cursed people,” the Hazara are followers of Shia Islam and an ethnic and religious minority in Afghanistan, a country whose wars are usually won by larger ethnic groups and followers of Sunni Islam. Their ancestry, traced by some historians to Genghis Khan, also means they are highly visible and have been targets for persecution by Afghan warlords from 19th-century Pashtun kings to today’s Taliban.

    In recent decades, millions of Hazara have fled Afghanistan, many of them to Iran, where their language, Dari, is a dialect of Persian Farsi, the country’s main language.

    “We had a life where we went from work to home, which were both underground in a basement,” he said. “There was nothing (for us) like strolling the streets. I was trying not to be seen by anyone. I ran from the police like I would from a street dog.”

    Iran hosts 950,000 Afghan refugees who are registered with the U.N. and another 1.5 million undocumented Afghans. There are no official refugee camps, making displaced Afghans one of the largest urban refugee populations in the world. For those without the money to pay bribes, there is no route to permanent residency or citizenship. Most refugees survive without papers on the outskirts of cities such as the capital, Tehran. Those who received permits, before Iran stopped issuing them altogether in 2007, must renew them annually. The charges are unpredictable and high. Mostly, the Afghan Hazara survive as an underclass, providing cheap labor in workshops and constructions sites. This was how Mosa grew up.

    “We had a life where we went from work to home, which were both underground in a basement,” he said. “There was nothing (for us) like strolling the streets. I was trying not to be seen by anyone. I ran from the police like I would from a street dog.”

    But he could not remain invisible forever and one day in October 2016, on his way home from work, he was detained by police for not having papers.

    Sitting in one of the cantinas opposite the entrance to Moria, Mosa haltingly explained what happened next. How he was threatened with prison in Iran or deportation to Afghanistan, a country in which he has never set foot. How he was told that that the only way out was to agree to fight in Syria – for which they would pay him and reward him with legal residence in Iran.

    “In Iran, you have to pay for papers,” said Mosa. “If you don’t pay, you don’t have papers. I do not know Afghanistan. I did not have a choice.”

    As he talked, Mosa spread out a sheaf of papers from a battered plastic wallet. Along with asylum documents was a small notepad decorated with pink and mauve elephants where he keeps the phone numbers of friends and family. It also contains a passport-sized green booklet with the crest of the Islamic Republic of Iran. It is a temporary residence permit. Inside its shiny cover is the photograph of a scared-looking boy, whom the document claims was born 27 years ago. It is the only I.D. he has ever owned and the date of birth has been faked to hide the fact that the country that issues it has been sending children to war.

    Mosa is not alone among the Hazara boys who have arrived in Greece seeking protection, carrying identification papers with inflated ages. Refugees Deeply has documented the cases of three Hazara child soldiers and corroborated their accounts with testimony from two other underage survivors. Their stories are of childhoods twice denied: once in Syria, where they were forced to fight, and then again after fleeing to Europe, where they are caught up in a system more focused on hard borders than on identifying the most damaged and vulnerable refugees.

    From Teenage Kicks to Adult Nightmares

    Karim’s descent into hell began with a prank. Together with a couple of friends, he recorded an angsty song riffing on growing up as a Hazara teenager in Tehran. Made when he was 16 years old, the song was meant to be funny. His band did not even have a name. The boys uploaded the track on a local file-sharing platform in 2014 and were as surprised as anyone when it was downloaded thousands of times. But after the surprise came a creeping sense of fear. Undocumented Afghan refugee families living in Tehran usually try to avoid drawing attention to themselves. Karim tried to have the song deleted, but after two months there was a knock on the door. It was the police.

    “I asked them how they found me,” he said. “I had no documents but they knew where I lived.”

    Already estranged from his family, the teenager was transported from his life of working in a pharmacy and staying with friends to life in a prison outside the capital. After two weeks inside, he was given three choices: to serve a five-year sentence; to be deported to Afghanistan; or to redeem himself by joining the Fatemiyoun.

    According to Iranian propaganda, the Fatemiyoun are Afghan volunteers deployed to Syria to protect the tomb of Zainab, the granddaughter of the Prophet Mohammad. In reality, the Fatemiyoun Brigade is a unit of Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard, drawn overwhelmingly from Hazara communities, and it has fought in Iraq and Yemen, as well as Syria. Some estimates put its full strength at 15,000, which would make it the second-largest foreign force in support of the Assad regime, behind the Lebanese militia group Hezbollah.

    Karim was told he would be paid and given a one-year residence permit during leave back in Iran. Conscripts are promised that if they are “martyred,” their family will receive a pension and permanent status. “I wasn’t going to Afghanistan and I wasn’t going to prison,” said Karim. So he found himself forced to serve in the #Fatemiyoun.

    His first taste of the new life came when he was transferred to a training base outside Tehran, where the recruits, including other children, were given basic weapons training and religious indoctrination. They marched, crawled and prayed under the brigade’s yellow flag with a green arch, crossed by assault rifles and a Koranic phrase: “With the Help of God.”

    “Imagine me at 16,” said Karim. “I have no idea how to kill a bird. They got us to slaughter animals to get us ready. First, they prepare your brain to kill.”

    The 16-year-old’s first deployment was to Mosul in Iraq, where he served four months. When he was given leave back in Iran, Karim was told that to qualify for his residence permit he would need to serve a second term, this time in Syria. They were first sent into the fight against the so-called Islamic State in Raqqa. Because of his age and physique, Karim and some of the other underage soldiers were moved to the medical corps. He said that there were boys as young as 14 and he remembers a 15-year-old who fought using a rocket-propelled grenade launcher.

    “One prisoner was killed by being hung by his hair from a tree. They cut off his fingers one by one and cauterized the wounds with gunpowder.”

    “I knew nothing about Syria. I was just trying to survive. They were making us hate ISIS, dehumanizing them. Telling us not to leave one of them alive.” Since media reports revealed the existence of the Fatemiyoun, the brigade has set up a page on Facebook. Among pictures of “proud volunteers,” it shows stories of captured ISIS prisoners being fed and cared for. Karim recalls a different story.

    “One prisoner was killed by being hung by his hair from a tree. They cut off his fingers one by one and cauterized the wounds with gunpowder.”

    The casualties on both sides were overwhelming. At the al-Razi hospital in Aleppo, the young medic saw the morgue overwhelmed with bodies being stored two or three to a compartment. Despite promises to reward the families of martyrs, Karim said many of the bodies were not sent back to Iran.

    Mosa’s basic training passed in a blur. A shy boy whose parents had divorced when he was young and whose father became an opium addict, he had always shrunk from violence. He never wanted to touch the toy guns that other boys played with. Now he was being taught to break down, clean and fire an assault rifle.

    The trainees were taken three times a day to the imam, who preached to them about their holy duty and the iniquities of ISIS, often referred to as Daesh.

    “They told us that Daesh was the same but worse than the Taliban,” said Mosa. “I didn’t listen to them. I didn’t go to Syria by choice. They forced me to. I just needed the paper.”

    Mosa was born in 2001. Before being deployed to Syria, the recruits were given I.D. tags and papers that deliberately overstated their age: In 2017, Human Rights Watch released photographs of the tombstones of eight Afghan children who had died in Syria and whose families identified them as having been under 18 years old. The clerk who filled out Mosa’s forms did not trouble himself with complex math: He just changed 2001 to 1991. Mosa was one of four underage soldiers in his group. The boys were scared – their hands shook so hard they kept dropping their weapons. Two of them were dead within days of reaching the front lines.

    “I didn’t even know where we were exactly, somewhere in the mountains in a foreign country. I was scared all the time. Every time I saw a friend dying in front of my eyes I was thinking I would be next,” said Mosa.

    He has flashbacks of a friend who died next to him after being shot in the face by a sniper. After the incident, he could not sleep for four nights. The worst, he said, were the sudden raids by ISIS when they would capture Fatemiyoun fighters: “God knows what happened to them.”

    Iran does not release figures on the number of Fatemiyoun casualties. In a rare interview earlier this year, a senior officer in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard suggested as many as 1,500 Fatemiyoun had been killed in Syria. In Mashhad, an Iranian city near the border with Afghanistan where the brigade was first recruited, video footage has emerged of families demanding the bodies of their young men believed to have died in Syria. Mosa recalls patrols in Syria where 150 men and boys would go out and only 120 would return.

    Escaping Syria

    Abbas had two weeks left in Syria before going back to Iran on leave. After 10 weeks in what he describes as a “living hell,” he had begun to believe he might make it out alive. It was his second stint in Syria and, still only 17 years old, he had been chosen to be a paramedic, riding in the back of a 2008 Chevrolet truck converted into a makeshift ambulance.

    He remembers thinking that the ambulance and the hospital would have to be better than the bitter cold of the front line. His abiding memory from then was the sound of incoming 120mm shells. “They had a special voice,” Abbas said. “And when you hear it, you must lie down.”

    Following 15 days of nursing training, during which he was taught how to find a vein and administer injections, he was now an ambulance man, collecting the dead and wounded from the battlefields on which the Fatemiyoun were fighting ISIS.

    Abbas grew up in Ghazni in Afghanistan, but his childhood ended when his father died from cancer in 2013. Now the provider for the family, he traveled with smugglers across the border into Iran, to work for a tailor in Tehran who had known his father. He worked without documents and faced the same threats as the undocumented Hazara children born in Iran. Even more dangerous were the few attempts he made to return to Ghazni. The third time he attempted to hop the border he was captured by Iranian police.

    Abbas was packed onto a transport, along with 23 other children, and sent to Ordugah-i Muhaceran, a camplike detention center outside Mashhad. When they got there the Shia Hazara boys were separated from Sunni Pashtuns, Afghanistan’s largest ethnic group, who were pushed back across the border. Abbas was given the same choice as Karim and Mosa before him: Afghanistan or Syria. Many of the other forced recruits Abbas met in training, and later fought alongside in Syria, were addicts with a history of substance abuse.

    Testimony from three Fatemiyoun child soldiers confirmed that Tramadol was routinely used by recruits to deaden their senses, leaving them “feeling nothing” even in combat situations but, nonetheless, able to stay awake for days at a time.

    The Fatemiyoun officers dealt with withdrawal symptoms by handing out Tramadol, an opioid painkiller that is used to treat back pain but sometimes abused as a cheap alternative to methadone. The drug is a slow-release analgesic. Testimony from three Fatemiyoun child soldiers confirmed that it was routinely used by recruits to deaden their senses, leaving them “feeling nothing” even in combat situations but, nonetheless, able to stay awake for days at a time. One of the children reiterated that the painkiller meant he felt nothing. Users describe feeling intensely thirsty but say they avoid drinking water because it triggers serious nausea and vomiting. Tramadol is addictive and prolonged use can lead to insomnia and seizures.

    Life in the ambulance had not met Abbas’ expectations. He was still sent to the front line, only now it was to collect the dead and mutilated. Some soldiers shot themselves in the feet to escape the conflict.

    “We picked up people with no feet and no hands. Some of them were my friends,” Abbas said. “One man was in small, small pieces. We collected body parts I could not recognize and I didn’t know if they were Syrian or Iranian or Afghan. We just put them in bags.”

    Abbas did not make it to the 12th week. One morning, driving along a rubble-strewn road, his ambulance collided with an anti-tank mine. Abbas’ last memory of Syria is seeing the back doors of the vehicle blasted outward as he was thrown onto the road.

    When he awoke he was in a hospital bed in Iran. He would later learn that the Syrian ambulance driver had been killed and that the other Afghan medic in the vehicle had lost both his legs. At the time, his only thought was to escape.

    The Toll on Child Soldiers

    Alice Roorda first came into contact with child soldiers in 2001 in the refugee camps of Sierra Leone in West Africa. A child psychologist, she was sent there by the United Kingdom-based charity War Child. She was one of three psychologists for a camp of more than 5,000 heavily traumatized survivors of one of West Africa’s more brutal conflicts.

    “There was almost nothing we could do,” she admitted.

    The experience, together with later work in Uganda, has given her a deep grounding in the effects of war and post-conflict trauma on children. She said prolonged exposure to conflict zones has physical as well as psychological effects.

    “If you are chronically stressed, as in a war zone, you have consistently high levels of the two basic stress hormones: adrenaline and cortisol.”

    Even after reaching a calmer situation, the “stress baseline” remains high, she said. This impacts everything from the immune system to bowel movements. Veterans often suffer from complications related to the continual engagement of the psoas, or “fear muscle” – the deepest muscles in the body’s core, which connect the spine, through the pelvis, to the femurs.

    “With prolonged stress you start to see the world around you as more dangerous.” The medial prefrontal cortex, the section of the brain that interprets threat levels, is also affected, said Roorda. This part of the brain is sometimes called the “watchtower.”

    “When your watchtower isn’t functioning well you see everything as more dangerous. You are on high alert. This is not a conscious response; it is because the stress is already so close to the surface.”

    Psychological conditions that can be expected to develop include post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Left untreated, these stress levels can lead to physical symptoms ranging from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS or ME) to high blood pressure or irritable bowel syndrome. Also common are heightened sensitivity to noise and insomnia.

    The trauma of war can also leave children frozen at the point when they were traumatized. “Their life is organized as if the trauma is still ongoing,” said Roorda. “It is difficult for them to take care of themselves, to make rational well informed choices, and to trust people.”

    The starting point for any treatment of child soldiers, said Roorda, is a calm environment. They need to release the tension with support groups and physical therapy, she said, and “a normal bedtime.”

    The Dutch psychologist, who is now based in Athens, acknowledged that what she is describing is the exact opposite of the conditions at #Moria.

    Endgame

    Karim is convinced that his facility for English has saved his life. While most Hazara boys arrive in Europe speaking only Farsi, Karim had taught himself some basic English before reaching Greece. As a boy in Tehran he had spent hours every day trying to pick up words and phrases from movies that he watched with subtitles on his phone. His favorite was The Godfather, which he said he must have seen 25 times. He now calls English his “safe zone” and said he prefers it to Farsi.

    When Karim reached Greece in March 2016, new arrivals were not yet confined to the islands. No one asked him if he was a child or an adult. He paid smugglers to help him escape Iran while on leave from Syria and after crossing through Turkey landed on Chios. Within a day and a half, he had passed through the port of Piraeus and reached Greece’s northern border with Macedonia, at Idomeni.

    When he realized the border was closed, he talked to some of the international aid workers who had come to help at the makeshift encampment where tens of thousands of refugees and migrants waited for a border that would not reopen. They ended up hiring him as a translator. Two years on, his English is now much improved and Karim has worked for a string of international NGOs and a branch of the Greek armed forces, where he was helped to successfully apply for asylum.

    The same job has also brought him to Moria. He earns an above-average salary for Greece and at first he said that his work on Lesbos is positive: “I’m not the only one who has a shitty background. It balances my mind to know that I’m not the only one.”

    But then he admits that it is difficult hearing and interpreting versions of his own life story from Afghan asylum seekers every day at work. He has had problems with depression and suffered flashbacks, “even though I’m in a safe country now.”

    Abbas got the help he needed to win the vulnerability contest. After he was initially registered as an adult, his age assessment was overturned and he was transferred from Moria to a shelter for children on Lesbos. He has since been moved again to a shelter in mainland Greece. While he waits to hear the decision on his protection status, Abbas – like other asylum seekers in Greece – receives 150 euros ($170) a month. This amount needs to cover all his expenses, from food and clothing to phone credit. The money is not enough to cover a regular course of the antidepressant Prozac and the sleeping pills he was prescribed by the psychiatrist he was able to see on Lesbos.

    “I save them for when it gets really bad,” he said.

    Since moving to the mainland he has been hospitalized once with convulsions, but his main worry is the pain in his groin. Abbas underwent a hernia operation in Iran, the result of injuries sustained as a child lifting adult bodies into the ambulance. He has been told that he will need to wait for four months to see a doctor in Greece who can tell him if he needs another operation.

    “I would like to go back to school,” he said. But in reality, Abbas knows that he will need to work and there is little future for an Afghan boy who can no longer lift heavy weights.

    Walking into an Afghan restaurant in downtown Athens – near Victoria Square, where the people smugglers do business – Abbas is thrilled to see Farsi singers performing on the television above the door. “I haven’t been in an Afghan restaurant for maybe three years,” he said to explain his excitement. His face brightens again when he catches sight of Ghormeh sabzi, a herb stew popular in Afghanistan and Iran that reminds him of his mother. “I miss being with them,” he said, “being among my family.”

    When the dish arrives he pauses before eating, taking out his phone and carefully photographing the plate from every angle.

    Mosa is about to mark the end of a full year in Moria. He remains in the same drab tent that reminds him every day of Syria. Serious weight loss has made his long limbs – the ones that made it easier for adults to pretend he was not a child – almost comically thin. His skin is laced with scars, but he refuses to go into detail about how he got them. Mosa has now turned 18 and seems to realize that his best chance of getting help may have gone.

    “Those people who don’t have problems, they give them vulnerability (status),” he said with evident anger. “If you tell them the truth, they don’t help you.”

    Then he apologises for the flash of temper. “I get upset and angry and my body shakes,” he said.

    Mosa explained that now when he gets angry he has learned to remove himself: “Sometimes I stuff my ears with toilet paper to make it quiet.”

    It is 10 months since Mosa had his asylum interview. The questions he expected about his time in the Fatemiyoun never came up. Instead, the interviewers asked him why he had not stayed in Turkey after reaching that country, having run away while on leave in Iran.

    The questions they did ask him point to his likely rejection and deportation. Why, he was asked, was his fear of being persecuted in Afghanistan credible? He told them that he has heard from other Afghan boys that police and security services in the capital, Kabul, were arresting ex-combatants from Syria.

    Like teenagers everywhere, many of the younger Fatemiyoun conscripts took selfies in Syria and posted them on Facebook or shared them on WhatsApp. The images, which include uniforms and insignia, can make him a target for Sunni reprisals. These pictures now haunt him as much as the faces of his dead comrades.

    Meanwhile, the fate he suffered two tours in Syria to avoid now seems to be the most that Europe can offer him. Without any of his earlier anger, he said, “I prefer to kill myself here than go to Afghanistan.”

    #enfants-soldats #syrie #réfugiés #asile #migrations #guerre #conflit #réfugiés_afghans #Afghanistan #ISIS #EI #Etat_islamique #trauma #traumatisme #vulnérabilité

    ping @isskein


  • Afghan, Pakistani forces clash over border fence

    Afghan and Pakistani border forces engaged in an armed clash over building a fence along the #Durand_Line on Sunday, local officials in southern Kandahar province said.

    Kandahar police spokesman, Zia Durani, told Pajhwok Afghan News that Pakistani forces tried this afternoon to fence a part of the Durand Line in Shorabak district of Kandahar, but Afghan border forces prevented their move.

    He said Pakistani forces in response attacked the Afghan forces and the clash was still underway. No one has so far been hurt in the battle. However, Pakistan closed down the friendship gate in #Spin_Boldak.

    A day earlier, Kandahar police chief, Gen. Abdul Raziq, said they had stopped Pakistan from fencing the Durand Line.

    He said that Pakistan started fencing the Durand Line in the southern region of the country but they stopped them.

    “Two weeks back, Pakistani forces started installation of fence on the border between Spin Boldak and #Shorabak districts of #Kandahar but border forces removed the fence and prevented them from doing so,” Raziq added.

    A year back, Afghan and Pakistani forces engaged in heavy clashes over fence installation in #Luqman and #Jahangir areas of Spin Boldak district and both the sides suffered casualties.

    Luqman and Jahangir areas are located in the zero point area of the border and they belong to Spin Boldak district.

    Pakistan forces last year conducted a population registration process in the two areas and claimed the areas belonged to Pakistan, but Afghan forces prevented them.

    The Afghan forces’ interference last year led to a fierce clash that continued for several hours, with both sides sustaining heavy casualties.

    After the clash, Afghanistan port with Pakistan was closed for 23 days that caused millions of afghanis losses to traders.


    https://www.pajhwok.com/en/2018/10/14/afghan-pakistani-forces-clash-over-border-fence
    #Pakistan #Afghanistan #murs #barrières_frontalières #frontières #disputes_frontalières

    #Ligne_durand:


    https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ligne_Durand


  • Let the children play: the man who built a playground on Lesbos | World news | The Guardian
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/oct/12/let-the-children-play-man-who-built-playground-lesbos-salam-aldeen

    Eyes glued to the screen, mouths wide open, they watch the final scene of the Disney film Aladdin.

    When the movie ends, the faces of nearly 500 children turn gloomy and tears fall down their cheeks. They come from Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq, and the time has come for them to return to their tents and metal containers in the squalid Moria camp on Lesbos. No one is getting out of here on a magic carpet.

    Dozens of the 3,000 minors here have attempted suicide because of overcrowding, squalor and their hopeless situation. But one man is trying to make things a little better for the children abandoned on Europe’s doorstep.

    #migrations #asile #grèce #lesbos


  • “If the water finishes, we will leave”: Drought is forcing hundreds of thousands of Afghans from their homes

    Afghanistan is besieged by decades of conflict, but more people this year have been displaced by drought than war.

    The severe drought has dried up riverbeds and water sources, withered crops, and forced 250,000 people from their homes.

    Journalist Stefanie Glinski spent a week between Herat and Badghis – two of the hardest-hit provinces in western Afghanistan. As these images show, she found parched fields, abandoned homes, and families struggling to cope.

    In the barren hills of Badghis, a gravel road winds through a dusty landscape, where wells and rivers have dried up completely.

    As desperation rises, some families have turned to selling off their daughters, through child marriage, in order to pay off swelling debt.

    Tens of thousands have fled to urban centres, living under simple tents. Available water, food, and healthcare fall far short of what’s needed. Aid groups have stepped in with limited emergency aid, but they acknowledge it hasn’t been enough to reach all the estimated 1.4 million people who require help.

    The Famine Early Warning Systems Network, which tracks food security around the world, is warning of more difficulties ahead: it predicts that the combination of a stumbling economy, instability, and failing crops will increase the need for food aid into next year.

    In remote Qapchiq, a village in Badghis’ Abkamari district, community leader Saskidad says his family has already lost their entire harvest.

    This year’s drought, he says, is “the worst I’ve ever seen”.

    https://www.irinnews.org/photo-feature/2018/10/04/if-water-finishes-we-will-leave-drought-forcing-hundreds-thousands-afghans
    #sécheresse #Afghanistan #eau #migrations #réfugiés #asile #réfugiés_environnementaux #désertification

    #photographie
    cc @albertocampiphoto


  • C.I.A. Drone Mission, Curtailed by Obama, Is Expanded in Africa Under Trump

    The C.I.A. is poised to conduct secret drone strikes against Qaeda and Islamic State insurgents from a newly expanded air base deep in the Sahara, making aggressive use of powers that were scaled back during the Obama administration and restored by President Trump.

    Late in his presidency, Barack Obama sought to put the military in charge of drone attacks after a backlash arose over a series of highly visible strikes, some of which killed civilians. The move was intended, in part, to bring greater transparency to attacks that the United States often refused to acknowledge its role in.

    But now the C.I.A. is broadening its drone operations, moving aircraft to northeastern Niger to hunt Islamist militants in southern Libya. The expansion adds to the agency’s limited covert missions in eastern Afghanistan for strikes in Pakistan, and in southern Saudi Arabia for attacks in Yemen.

    Nigerien and American officials said the C.I.A. had been flying drones on surveillance missions for several months from a corner of a small commercial airport in Dirkou. Satellite imagery shows that the airport has grown significantly since February to include a new taxiway, walls and security posts.

    One American official said the drones had not yet been used in lethal missions, but would almost certainly be in the near future, given the growing threat in southern Libya. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the secretive operations.

    A C.I.A. spokesman, Timothy Barrett, declined to comment. A Defense Department spokeswoman, Maj. Sheryll Klinkel, said the military had maintained a base at the Dirkou airfield for several months but did not fly drone missions from there.

    The drones take off from Dirkou at night — typically between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m. — buzzing in the clear, starlit desert sky. A New York Times reporter saw the gray aircraft — about the size of Predator drones, which are 27 feet long — flying at least three times over six days in early August. Unlike small passenger planes that land occasionally at the airport, the drones have no blinking lights signaling their presence.

    “All I know is they’re American,” Niger’s interior minister, Mohamed Bazoum, said in an interview. He offered few other details about the drones.

    Dirkou’s mayor, Boubakar Jerome, said the drones had helped improve the town’s security. “It’s always good. If people see things like that, they’ll be scared,” Mr. Jerome said.

    Mr. Obama had curtailed the C.I.A.’s lethal role by limiting its drone flights, notably in Yemen. Some strikes in Pakistan and elsewhere that accidentally killed civilians, stirring outrage among foreign diplomats and military officials, were shielded because of the C.I.A.’s secrecy.

    As part of the shift, the Pentagon was given the unambiguous lead for such operations. The move sought, in part, to end an often awkward charade in which the United States would not concede its responsibility for strikes that were abundantly covered by news organizations and tallied by watchdog groups. However, the C.I.A. program was not fully shut down worldwide, as the agency and its supporters in Congress balked.

    The drone policy was changed last year, after Mike Pompeo, the C.I.A. director at the time, made a forceful case to President Trump that the agency’s broader counterterrorism efforts were being needlessly constrained. The Dirkou base was already up and running by the time Mr. Pompeo stepped down as head of the C.I.A. in April to become Mr. Trump’s secretary of state.

    The Pentagon’s Africa Command has carried out five drone strikes against Qaeda and Islamic State militants in Libya this year, including one two weeks ago. The military launches its MQ-9 Reaper drones from bases in Sicily and in Niamey, Niger’s capital, 800 miles southwest of Dirkou.

    But the C.I.A. base is hundreds of miles closer to southwestern Libya, a notorious haven for Al Qaeda and other extremist groups that also operate in the Sahel region of Niger, Chad, Mali and Algeria. It is also closer to southern Libya than a new $110 million drone base in Agadez, Niger, 350 miles west of Dirkou, where the Pentagon plans to operate armed Reaper drone missions by early next year.

    Another American official said the C.I.A. began setting up the base in January to improve surveillance of the region, partly in response to an ambush last fall in another part of Niger that killed four American troops. The Dirkou airfield was labeled a United States Air Force base as a cover, said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss confidential operational matters.

    The C.I.A. operation in Dirkou is burdened by few, if any, of the political sensitivities that the United States military confronts at its locations, said one former American official involved with the project.

    Even so, security analysts said, it is not clear why the United States needs both military and C.I.A. drone operations in the same general vicinity to combat insurgents in Libya. France also flies Reaper drones from Niamey, but only on unarmed reconnaissance missions.

    “I would be surprised that the C.I.A. would open its own base,” said Bill Roggio, editor of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies’ Long War Journal, which tracks military strikes against militant groups.

    Despite American denials, a Nigerien security official said he had concluded that the C.I.A. launched an armed drone from the Dirkou base to strike a target in Ubari, in southern Libya, on July 25. The Nigerien security official spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the classified program.

    A spokesman for the Africa Command, Maj. Karl Wiest, said the military did not carry out the Ubari strike.

    #Ubari is in the same region where the American military in March launched its first-ever drone attack against Qaeda militants in southern Libya. It is at the intersection of the powerful criminal and jihadist currents that have washed across Libya in recent years. Roughly equidistant from Libya’s borders with Niger, Chad and Algeria, the area’s seminomadic residents are heavily involved in the smuggling of weapons, drugs and migrants through the lawless deserts of southern Libya.

    Some of the residents have allied with Islamist militias, including Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, which operates across Algeria, Mali, Niger and Libya.

    Dirkou, in northeast Niger, is an oasis town of a few thousand people in the open desert, bordered by a small mountain range. For centuries, it has been a key transit point for travelers crossing the Sahara. It helped facilitate the rise of Islam in West Africa in the 9th century, and welcomed salt caravans from the neighboring town of Bilma.

    The town has a handful of narrow, sandy roads. Small trees dot the horizon. Date and neem trees line the streets, providing shelter for people escaping the oppressive midday heat. There is a small market, where goods for sale include spaghetti imported from Libya. Gasoline is also imported from Libya and is cheaper than elsewhere in the country.

    The drones based in Dirkou are loud, and their humming and buzzing drowns out the bleats of goats and crows of roosters.

    “It stops me from sleeping,” said Ajimi Koddo, 45, a former migrant smuggler. “They need to go. They go in our village, and it annoys us too much.”

    Satellite imagery shows that construction started in February on a new compound at the Dirkou airstrip. Since then, the facility has been extended to include a larger paved taxiway and a clamshell tent connected to the airstrip — all features that are consistent with the deployment of small aircraft, possibly drones.

    Five defensive positions were set up around the airport, and there appear to be new security gates and checkpoints both to the compound and the broader airport.

    It’s not the first time that Washington has eyed with interest Dirkou’s tiny base. In the late 1980s, the United States spent $3.2 million renovating the airstrip in an effort to bolster Niger’s government against Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, then the leader of Libya.

    Compared with other parts of Africa, the C.I.A.’s presence in the continent’s northwest is relatively light, according to a former State Department official who served in the region. In this part of Niger, the C.I.A. is also providing training and sharing intelligence, according to a Nigerien military intelligence document reviewed by The Times.

    The Nigerien security official said about a dozen American Green Berets were stationed earlier this year in #Dirkou — in a base separate from the C.I.A.’s — to train a special counterterrorism battalion of local forces. Those trainers left about three months ago, the official said.

    It is unlikely that they will return anytime soon. The Pentagon is considering withdrawing nearly all American commandos from Niger in the wake of the deadly October ambush that killed four United States soldiers.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/09/world/africa/cia-drones-africa-military.html
    #CIA #drones #Niger #Sahel #USA #Etats-Unis #EI #ISIS #Etat_islamique #sécurité #terrorisme #base_militaire

    • Le Sahel est-il une zone de #non-droit ?

      La CIA a posé ses valises dans la bande sahélo-saharienne. Le New-York Times l’a annoncé, le 9 septembre dernier. Le quotidien US, a révélé l’existence d’une #base_de_drones secrète non loin de la commune de Dirkou, dans le nord-est du Niger. Cette localité, enclavée, la première grande ville la plus proche est Agadez située à 570 km, est le terrain de tir parfait. Elle est éloignée de tous les regards, y compris des autres forces armées étrangères : France, Allemagne, Italie, présentes sur le sol nigérien. Selon un responsable américain anonyme interrogé par ce journal, les drones déployés à Dirkou n’avaient « pas encore été utilisés dans des missions meurtrières, mais qu’ils le seraient certainement dans un proche avenir, compte tenu de la menace croissante qui pèse sur le sud de la Libye. » Or, d’après les renseignements recueillis par l’IVERIS, ces assertions sont fausses, la CIA a déjà mené des opérations à partir de cette base. Ces informations apportent un nouvel éclairage et expliquent le refus catégorique et systématique de l’administration américaine de placer la force conjointe du G5 Sahel (Tchad, Mauritanie, Burkina-Faso, Niger, Mali) sous le chapitre VII de la charte des Nations Unies.
      L’installation d’une base de drones n’est pas une bonne nouvelle pour les peuples du Sahel, et plus largement de l’Afrique de l’Ouest, qui pourraient connaître les mêmes malheurs que les Afghans et les Pakistanais confrontés à la guerre des drones avec sa cohorte de victimes civiles, appelées pudiquement « dégâts collatéraux ».

      D’après le journaliste du NYT, qui s’est rendu sur place, les drones présents à Dirkou ressembleraient à des Predator, des aéronefs d’ancienne génération qui ont un rayon d’action de 1250 km. Il serait assez étonnant que l’agence de Langley soit équipée de vieux modèles alors que l’US Air Force dispose à Niamey et bientôt à Agadez des derniers modèles MQ-9 Reaper, qui, eux, volent sur une distance de 1850 km. A partir de cette base, la CIA dispose donc d’un terrain de tir étendu qui va de la Libye, au sud de l’Algérie, en passant par le Tchad, jusqu’au centre du Mali, au Nord du Burkina et du Nigéria…

      Selon deux sources militaires de pays d’Afrique de l’Ouest, ces drones ont déjà réalisé des frappes à partir de la base de Dirkou. Ces bombardements ont eu lieu en Libye. Il paraît important de préciser que le chaos existant dans ce pays depuis la guerre de 2011, ne rend pas ces frappes plus légales. Par ailleurs, ces mêmes sources suspectent la CIA d’utiliser Dirkou comme une prison secrète « si des drones peuvent se poser des avions aussi. Rien ne les empêche de transporter des terroristes de Libye exfiltrés. Dirkou un Guantanamo bis ? »

      En outre, il n’est pas impossible que ces drones tueurs aient été en action dans d’autres Etats limitrophes. Qui peut le savoir ? « Cette base est irrégulière, illégale, la CIA peut faire absolument tout ce qu’elle veut là-bas » rapporte un officier. De plus, comment faire la différence entre un MQ-9 Reaper de la CIA ou encore un de l’US Air Force, qui, elle, a obtenu l’autorisation d’armer ses drones (1). Encore que…

      En novembre 2017, le président Mahamadou Issoufou a autorisé les drones de l’US Air Force basés à Niamey, à frapper leurs cibles sur le territoire nigérien (2). Mais pour que cet agrément soit légal, il aurait fallu qu’il soit présenté devant le parlement, ce qui n’a pas été le cas. Même s’il l’avait été, d’une part, il le serait seulement pour l’armée US et pas pour la CIA, d’autre part, il ne serait valable que sur le sol nigérien et pas sur les territoires des pays voisins…

      Pour rappel, cette autorisation a été accordée à peine un mois après les événements de Tongo Tongo, où neuf militaires avaient été tués, cinq soldats nigériens et quatre américains. Cette autorisation est souvent présentée comme la conséquence de cette attaque. Or, les pourparlers ont eu lieu bien avant. En effet, l’AFRICOM a planifié la construction de la base de drone d’Agadez, la seconde la plus importante de l’US Air Force en Afrique après Djibouti, dès 2016, sous le mandat de Barack Obama. Une nouvelle preuve que la politique africaine du Pentagone n’a pas changée avec l’arrivée de Donald Trump (3-4-5).

      Les USA seuls maîtres à bord dans le Sahel

      Dès lors, le véto catégorique des Etats-Unis de placer la force G5 Sahel sous chapitre VII se comprend mieux. Il s’agit de mener une guerre non-officielle sans mandat international des Nations-Unies et sans se soucier du droit international. Ce n’était donc pas utile qu’Emmanuel Macron, fer de lance du G5, force qui aurait permis à l’opération Barkhane de sortir du bourbier dans lequel elle se trouve, plaide à de nombreuses reprises cette cause auprès de Donald Trump. Tous les présidents du G5 Sahel s’y sont essayés également, en vain. Ils ont fini par comprendre, quatre chefs d’Etats ont boudé la dernière Assemblée générale des Nations Unies. Seul, le Président malien, Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta, est monté à la tribune pour réitérer la demande de mise sous chapitre VII, unique solution pour que cette force obtienne un financement pérenne. Alors qu’en décembre 2017, Emmanuel Macron y croyait encore dur comme fer et exigeait des victoires au premier semestre 2018, faute de budget, le G5 Sahel n’est toujours pas opérationnel ! (6-7) Néanmoins, la Chine a promis de le soutenir financièrement. Magnanime, le secrétaire d’Etat à la défense, Jim Mattis a lui assuré à son homologue, Florence Parly, que les Etats-Unis apporteraient à la force conjointe une aide très significativement augmentée. Mais toujours pas de chapitre VII en vue... Ainsi, l’administration Trump joue coup double. Non seulement elle ne s’embarrasse pas avec le Conseil de Sécurité et le droit international mais sous couvert de lutte antiterroriste, elle incruste ses bottes dans ce qui est, (ce qui fut ?), la zone d’influence française.

      Far West

      Cerise sur le gâteau, en août dernier le patron de l’AFRICOM, le général Thomas D. Waldhauser, a annoncé une réduction drastique de ses troupes en Afrique (9). Les sociétés militaires privées, dont celle d’Erik Prince, anciennement Blackwater, ont bien compris le message et sont dans les starting-blocks prêtes à s’installer au Sahel (10).


      https://www.iveris.eu/list/notes_danalyse/371-le_sahel_estil_une_zone_de_nondroit__


  • UN Human Rights Council passes a resolution adopting the peasant rights declaration in Geneva - Via Campesina
    https://viacampesina.org/en/un-human-rights-council-passes-a-resolution-adopting-the-peasant-right

    Seventeen years of long and arduous negotiations later, peasants and other people working in rural areas are only a step away from having a UN Declaration that could defend and protect their rights to land, seeds, biodiversity, local markets and a lot more.

    On Friday, 28 September, in a commendable show of solidarity and political will, member nations of United Nations Human Rights Council passed a resolution concluding the UN Declaration for the Rights of Peasants and Other People Working in Rural Areas. The resolution was passed with 33 votes in favour, 11 abstentions and 3 against. [1]

    Contre : Australie, Hongrie et Royaume-Uni

    In favour: Afghanistan, Angola, Burundi, Chile, China, Cote d’Ivoire, Cuba, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iraq, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Mexico, Mongolia, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, South Africa, Switzerland, Togo, Tunisia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Venezuela

    Abstention: Belgium, Brazil, Croatia, Georgia, Germany, Iceland, Japan, Republic of Korea, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain

    https://viacampesina.org/en/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2011/03/Declaration-of-rights-of-peasants-2009.pdf

    #droit_des_paysan·nes


  • Les quatre minutes de vérité du sénateur Graham
    http://www.dedefensa.org/article/les-quatre-minutes-de-verite-du-senateur-graham

    Les quatre minutes de vérité du sénateur Graham

    28 septembre 2018 – On se rappelle, l’on sait même avec la plus grande certitude, que je n’ai jamais porté le sénateur républicain US Lindsay Graham dans mon cœur. Grand ami et complice de McCain, Graham a été de toutes les incitations, exclamations, manipulations & autres sales coups pour lancer ou entretenir des agressions et des conflits américanistes extérieurs, en Irak, en Afghanistan, en Libye, en Syrie, en Ukraine, etc.

    Graham est toujours le même à cet égard. Il a exprimé ses encouragements à Trump lorsque, à deux reprises avril 2017 et avril 2018), celui-ci a fait tirer des missiles contre la Syrie, regrettant néanmoins les doses homéopathiques employées au lieu d’un vrai carpet-bombing du type Shock & Awe pour en finir avec Assad. Graham (...)


  • As the World Abandons Refugees, UNHCR’s Constraints Are Exposed

    The U.N. refugee agency lacks the funding, political clout and independence to protect refugees in the way that it is supposed to, says former UNHCR official and refugee policy expert #Jeff_Crisp.

    Over the past three years, the world has been confronted with a number of major new refugee emergencies – in Myanmar, Nigeria, South Sudan, Yemen and Venezuela, as well as the Central American region. In addition, existing crises in Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Somalia and Syria have gone unresolved, making it impossible for large exiled populations to return to their own country. As a result, the global refugee population has soared to more than 25 million, the highest figure ever recorded.

    This means that the role of the United Nations refugee agency, UNHCR, which is supposed to protect and find solutions for this growing population, is more important than ever. But is it up to the task? The proliferating crises have stretched it to the limit. Funding, most of which comes from a dozen key donor states, has not kept up with the rising numbers the agency is expected to support. In April, UNHCR said it had received just $2.3 billion of the $8.2 billion it needed for its annual program.

    Things look unlikely to improve. UNHCR is losing the support of the United States, traditionally the organization’s most important government partner, whether under Republican or Democrat administrations. Since Donald Trump’s election, the country has slashed the number of refugees it admits through its resettlement program. In his final years in office, Barack Obama had raised the annual quota to 110,000 refugees. That is now down to 45,000 and may yet be reduced to 25,000.

    There is also the prospect that the Trump administration will demonstrate its disdain for the U.N. and limited interest in the refugee issue by reducing its funding to the agency, as it has already done with UNRWA, a separate agency that supports Palestinian refugees. Given that the U.S. currently contributes almost 40 percent of the UNHCR budget, even a modest reduction in its support will mean serious cuts in expenditure.

    The agency therefore has little choice but to look for alternative sources of funding and diplomatic support, especially from the European Union and its member states. But that may come at a price. One of the E.U.’s top priorities is to halt the arrival of refugees and asylum seekers who have transited through nearby countries such as Libya, Morocco and Turkey. Populist political parties throughout much of the E.U. are reaping the electoral benefits of taking a hard line on the issue of refugees and migration. Several European governments have shown little hesitation in violating the international refugee laws they have signed in their desperation to seal Europe’s borders.

    The E.U. thus looks to UNHCR for two things: first, the expertise and operational capacity of an organization that has years of experience in responding to mass movements of people; and second, the legitimacy that E.U. policies can acquire by means of close association with an agency deemed by its founding statute to be “entirely non-political and humanitarian.” In this context, it should come as no surprise that E.U. foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini has been at pains to point out that the E.U. and UNHCR “work together” and have a “close partnership” – and that the E.U. remains “the strongest supporter of UNHCR.”

    But this partnership (which involved $436 million in funding from Brussels alone in 2017) also involves an important element of compromise on the part of UNHCR. In the Mediterranean, for example, the E.U. is funding the Libyan coast guard to intercept and return any refugees who try to leave the country by boat. Those people are subsequently confined to detention centers where, according to Amnesty International, they are at risk of torture, forced labor, extortion and murder at the hand of smugglers, bandits or the Libyan authorities.

    The U.N. high commissioner for human rights has publicly chastised the E.U. for its failure to improve the situation of migrants in Libya. By contrast, UNHCR has kept very quiet about the E.U.’s role in the process of interception, return and detention, despite the fact that these actions violate a fundamental principle of refugee protection: that no one should be returned to a country where their life or freedom would be threatened.

    This reveals a fundamental tension in the organization’s character. Ostensibly, UNHCR enjoys a high degree of independence and moral authority. As part of the U.N. system, it is treated with more respect by states and other actors than NGOs doing similar work. It has regular access to heads of state, government leaders, regional organizations, the U.N. security council and the secretary-general himself (who was previously UNHCR chief).

    But in practice, the autonomy enjoyed by UNHCR is at best a relative one. Almost 90 percent of the agency’s funding is provided by states, much of it earmarked for specific programs, projects and countries. UNHCR’s governing board consists entirely of states.

    The organization can operate in a country only if it has the agreement of the government, which also has the ability to shape the scope of UNHCR’s operational activities, as well as the partners it works with. In countries such as Ethiopia, Pakistan, Sudan and Syria, for example, the organization is obliged to work with government departments whose priorities may well be different from those of UNHCR.

    Almost 90 percent of the agency’s funding is provided by states, much of it earmarked for specific programs, projects and countries. UNHCR’s governing board consists entirely of states.

    The tensions at the heart of UNHCR seem unlikely to diminish. Throughout the world, governments are closing their borders to refugees and depriving them of basic rights. Exiled populations are being induced to repatriate against their will and to countries that are not safe. As epitomized by the E.U.’s deal with Turkey, asylum seekers have become bargaining chips in interstate relations, used by political leaders to extract financial, political and even military concessions from each other.

    Given the constitutional constraints imposed on the organization, UNHCR’s options are now limited. It can try (as it has done for many years) to diversify its funding base. It could assume a more assertive stance with states that violate refugee protection principles – and in doing so risk the loss of its already diminished degree of diplomatic support. And it can hope that the recently completed Global Compact on Refugees, a nonbinding declaration of principles that most U.N. member states are expected to sign, will have some effect on the way that governments actually treat refugees.

    A final option available to UNHCR is to be more transparent about its limitations, to moderate the relentless self-promotion of its branding and marketing campaign and give greater recognition to the efforts that refugees are making to improve their own lives. In that respect, UNHCR’s favourite hashtag, “We Stand #WithRefugees,” could usefully be changed to “Refugees Are #StandingUpForThemselves.”

    #UN #ONU #HCR #UNHCR #crise #indépendance #fonds #financement #it_has_begun


  • How Jimmy Carter and I Started the Mujahideen » Counterpunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names
    http://archive.is/VH3r#selection-801.1-919.214

    January 15, 1998

    by Alexander Cockburn And Jeffrey St. Clair

    Q: The former director of the CIA, Robert Gates, stated in his memoirs ["From the Shadows"], that American intelligence services began to aid the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan 6 months before the Soviet intervention. In this period you were the national security adviser to President Carter. You therefore played a role in this affair. Is that correct?

    Brzezinski: Yes. According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise: Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.

    Q: Despite this risk, you were an advocate of this covert action. But perhaps you yourself desired this Soviet entry into war and looked to provoke it?

    Brzezinski: It isn’t quite that. We didn’t push the Russians to intervene, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would.

    Q: When the Soviets justified their intervention by asserting that they intended to fight against a secret involvement of the United States in Afghanistan, people didn’t believe them. However, there was a basis of truth. You don’t regret anything today?

    Brzezinski: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter: We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.

    Q: And neither do you regret having supported the Islamic [integrisme], having given arms and advice to future terrorists?

    Brzezinski: What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war?

    Q: Some stirred-up Moslems? But it has been said and repeated: Islamic fundamentalism represents a world menace today.

    Brzezinski: Nonsense! It is said that the West had a global policy in regard to Islam. That is stupid. There isn’t a global Islam. Look at Islam in a rational manner and without demagoguery or emotion. It is the leading religion of the world with 1.5 billion followers. But what is there in common among Saudi Arabian fundamentalism, moderate Morocco, Pakistan militarism, Egyptian pro-Western or Central Asian secularism? Nothing more than what unites the Christian countries.

    * There are at least two editions of this magazine; with the perhaps sole exception of the Library of Congress, the version sent to the United States is shorter than the French version, and the Brzezinski interview was not included in the shorter version.
    The above has been translated from the French by Bill Blum author of the indispensible, “Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II” and “Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower”

    #Afghanistan #USA #URSS #histoire