Who Is The Federal Agent Behind the Ray-Ban Glasses?

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Newton Ishii, The Japanese Federal Agent. The Photo source Twitter

An edited copy is published on Global Voices

“Ai meu Deus, me dei mal, bateu à minha porta o Japonês da Federal”

“Oh my God, I feel bad, the Japanese Federal knocking at my door”

According to “Diálogos Políticos” blog, is this the main phrase of a “hit music” ahead of 2016 Brazil Carnival starting next 5th Feb, 2016. The Japanese mentioned is the Federal Police agent, Newton Ishii, who arrests the sentenced figures as result of Operação Lava Jato.

Probably you heard about the corruption scandal in Brazil, nowadays, this case is between Justice authorities hands since 2008. Lava Jato is a money laundering investigation, it has expanded to cover allegations of corruption at the national oil company Petrobras. This criminal “system” is known as “Petrolão” scheme suspected of moving more than 10 Billion Brazilian Reais (approx. USD 3.5 Billion in 2015) as bribes between pro-government politicians, top construction company executives among others.

Carnival Presence

Newton Ishii, o’Japonês da Federal’, vira música e bomba na internet; assista

Coming 2016 Carnival is selecting a popular figures who contributed to the Brazilian lives during 2015, and one of them is Ishii. Wrote Blog do Gordinho:

O agente da Polícia Federal Newton Ishii, que virou celebridade ao sempre estar presente nas prisões e apreensões da Operação Lava-Jato, promete ser um dos personagens mais citados no Carnaval de 2016. O policial, mais conhecido como “japonês da federal”, deverá ganhar um protótipo de máscara de carnaval produzido pela fábrica Condal, no Rio de Janeiro. Entretanto, para não gerar problemas com direitos de imagem, a empresa deverá recorrer a um “japonês genérico”.

Além disso, o agente vai virar boneco gigante no carnaval de Olinda. O gigante irá vestir a farda e o colete característicos da PF, pesar entre 18kg e 20kg e medir 2,20 metros. Outro personagem da Lava-Jato que estará presente nas ruas da cidade pernambucana é o juiz Sérgio Moro.

The Federal Police agent Newton Ishii, who became celebrity just been present in the arrests of Lava-jato operation, seems to be one of the most quoted characters in 2016. The police agent, known as “Japanese federal” should gain a carnival mask prototype produced by Condal factory in Rio de Janeiro. However, to not create problems with image rights, the company should use a “generic Japanese”.

In addition, the agent will be a giant character in the carnival of Olinda. The giant will wear the uniform and the characteristic federal police, weigh between 18 kg and 20 kg and measure 2.20 meters. Another character of the Lava-Jato will be presented in Pernambuco city streets is the judge Sergio Moro.

A factory is producing carnival masks of the federal police agent, Newton Ishii, the “Japanese” of Lava Jato operations.

What’s your favorite mask for the carnival this year? Eduardo Cunha (President of Parliament) or Newton Ishii of Federal Police?

Pro-Ishii

Brazilians who support Ishii image as corruption-fighter posted their messages on Twitter, either by wishing him to exempt any corrupted Brazilian of his arrests (although he has no authority of legal charge) or by taking photos and greeting him online.

Grateful of Federal Agent kindness Ishii to take photo with me and my family.

Happy new year to Newton Ishii, great arrests. The federal police is well presented.

“The Federal Japanese” his name is Newton Ishii, an example.

To all, Judge Sergio Moro, the Attorney Deltan Dallagnol and Police Federal agent Newton Ishii, I forward my thanks of Lava-Jato [operation members].

  • Brazilians heroes: The judge [Sergio] Moro, Newton Ishii, and Jaquim Barbosa, we need more of such men. [mentioning the judge, the agent and the STF minister whom deliver the corruption sentences against accused executives]
  • The photo reads: The Japanese of sunglasses of federal police: The man who non of workers’ party members would like to meet.
  • Breaking News: After Arresting the politicians, the Japanese Newton Ishii of FP of Curitiba, changes his name and candidates to elections. sic!
  • The photo reads: The Japanese of federal police who no one of workers’ party members would like to meet.

Humor Politico (Political humor) published a cartoon showing ex-president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva hiding his head as ostrich. Many of Brazilian are accusing the leaders of Workers’ Party (PT) government, who in power since 2002. Lula, Brazil’s president between 2002-2010 and a popular figure is a constant criticized target in media and public due to his “potential” influence over the government of Dilma Rousseff, his successor and current elected president of Brazil 2010-2018.

Hide

Even Ishii himself, used Social Media to ask Brazilians’ support to fight the corruption

Anti-Ishii

Though most of tweets were greeting Ishii work, not all Brazilians agree that Ishii is a clean, honest agent.

According to Epoca, a magazine of Globo Group, the agent of the Federal Police that appears in almost all the photos leading the arrested executives, has joined in 1976, arrested by FP itself during Operation Sucuri in 2003, suspected to integrate a smuggling gang between Brazil and Paraguay border. Accused of corruption, and expelled later from the PF.

The Japanese agent was reappointed the agent NEWTON HIDENORI ISHII the post of federal police

Ishii appealed to criminal and civil processes, and brought back to his profession. The Federal Police says that Ishii has his managers satisfaction and confidence and is an excellent professional.

  • If this Japanese ring your doorbell at your home at 6:00 AM, please don’t open, because you’ll be screwed. Ha!!
  • SMUGGLER leaker = Newton Hidenori Ishii
  • Who is the nice Japanese who is selling smuggled goods?
  • Is it true that Newton Ishii?
  • The Photo reads: Who is the federal agent behind the sunglasses? Newton Ishii, accused of corruption.
Posted in Cartoon, Culture & Life, Econmoy & Business, English, Photos, Portuguese, Video | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

How to Fight ISIS Social Media “Full Loaded War Propaganda Machine”

Cartoon by Nicholson from “The Australian” newspaper: www.nicholsoncartoons.com.au

Cartoon by Nicholson from “The Australian” newspaper: http://www.nicholsoncartoons.com.au

How Netizens Are Pushing Back Against ISIS’ Social Media ‘Propaganda Machine’

An edited copy is published on Advox – Global Voices

A recently published news hackers trace ISIS Twitter accounts back to internet addresses linked to Department of Work and Pensions in UK, keeps the ordinary citizen wonder how these extremists are able to “brain wash” its follower to recruit them into electronic war against the global powers, and so far wining it, regardless all technologies effort to contain or eliminate their social media accounts.

While Facebook and Twitter relatively succeed in banning Daash of graphic and hate speech content, “but the challenge for sites like Facebook and Twitter goes beyond tracking down content that promotes terrorism”, wrote Julia Greenberg to Wired.

It also requires defining “promoting terrorism.” In a sense, the two platforms are global communities, each engaged in a constant process of determining community norms as the use of the platforms evolves.

No one deny social media for-good approach in humanity, supporting noble causes and promote freedom of speech. However, in name of freedom of speech, Social Media (SM) is effectively used by Daash (or Daesh, ISIS) to recruit ordinary muslim youths from around the world, convert the ugly killing reality with high editing and Photoshop technologies to promote heaven via all kind of Jihad, from forcing sex to suicide.

In absence of any definite win over ISIS online war and after almost a year of successful employment of it SM accounts, Rita Katz, the director of the SITE Institute wrote that: Air strikes won’t disrupt Islamic State’s real safe haven: social media.

As the West continuous to mishandle the electronic jihad it is proving the militants right. Consider the State Department’s “Think Again Turn Away” social media campaign. In trying to win over would-be jihadists online, the program engages in childish discussions with jihadists.

According to Voices of the blogs study, late 2014, the support of ISIS Arabic content on twitter comes from Europe.

Outside Syria, support for Isis, always a minority among online communities, rises significantly. 47% of studied tweets and posts from Qatar, 35% from Pakistan, 31% from Belgium and almost 24% of posts from UK and 21% from the US were classified as being supportive of the jihadist organisation compared with just under 20% in Jordan, Saudi Arabia (19.7%) and Iraq (19.8%).

Attacking Islamic State’s Online Presence

Though that this post is unable to handle all actions, not even most, following are some examples of groups and individuals who attack ISIS online.

  • Twitter account @reportterrorist Claims that there is 50K ISIS twitter accounts need to bring down.
  • Anonymous Group has published a series of guides to help those seeking to join its “war on ISIS” to track and identify Islamic State’s websites. It dedicates a twitter account @TeamDestroyISIS to re-tweets, mock and hunt down ISIS accounts accompanied with the hashtag .
  • Several individual efforts by Arab netizens have joined the international coalition against terrorism online. One of these contributions is the twitter account @KSAssa or Saudi Arabia Electronic Army (20.7K followers) is taking a lead to stop and “destroy” accounts related to Daash and “every enemy” of which threats the country’s unification under the Arabic hashtag  (Campaign against Daash spam accounts).

Your cooperation and activity is essential to delete criminals accounts and vandals, enemies of religion and our homeland.

  • Also @BlockDaesh lead by @Mujtahid_i (30.4K followers) are among few of fire-back campaigns to bring down ISIS twitter spam accounts.

[…] I decided to change the activity from fighting against Daash, especially these days, to fight the Safavids; and will get back to Daash God willing

And the question yet is beyond the air strikes and on-ground militar operations:

But taking down ISIS Web Sites is like shooting Fish in a barrel, wrote the fight ISIS blog.

There is soo many targets out there right now on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Sendvid all are flooded with ISIS users and Propaganda. You can help and you do not even need to be a Hacker to Shut Down ISIS Web Sites !!

Most of the Web sites, all we have to do is report the User to the Host (like twitter, facebook, Etc.) and they will Suspend or Shutdown the User / ISIS account.

Technology Review proposed more human approach, because what’s missing is a direct contact with the young generation (Muslims or non-Muslims) who been targeted by ISIS to disprove Jihad propaganda.

Indeed, the technological response to stanching the recruitment isn’t having much of an effect. Internet companies close accounts and delete gory videos; they share information with law enforcement. Government agencies tweet out countermessages and fund general outreach efforts in Muslim communities. Various NGOs train religious and community leaders in how to rebut ISIS messaging, and they create websites with peaceful interpretations of the Quran. But what’s missing is a widespread effort to establish one-on-one contact online with the people who are absorbing content from ISIS and other extremist groups and becoming radicalized.

Posted in Arabic, Crises, Culture & Life, English, Eudcation & Human Rights | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Syrian Refugees? Get Your Facts Straight Before You Share Their Stories

Refugees are Human Beings. Photo from Commons Wikimedia

Refugees are Human Beings. Photograph from Commons Wikimedia CC-BY-SA-3.0

This Post was originally written for Global Voices

Sadly, this year is shaping up to be the year of Syrian refugees. Although the countless stories of people fleeing their war-torn country are heartbreaking, we need to look at some of those stories with a pinch of salt. Unfortunately, in some cases the world continues to be misinformed by images and video circulating online that are purportedly of the tragedy but have actually been manipulated or described inaccurately.

The reasons vary from clicktivism to politics. For instance, some European right-wing political parties are using the recent refugee crisis to further push their agenda and close the doors on Syrian refugees taking refuge in Europe. In fact, a photograph claiming to show Syrian refugees waving the ISIS flag in Germany, which is widely being shared on Facebook, is three years old and is not related to the current crisis.

Below are four stories of Syrian refugees stories you may have come across on your social media accounts, which are far from what they appear to be.

Story 1: The Italian fashion model and the Syrian immigrants’ boat

Shared on the Syrians in Belgium group on Facebook, this video above is shared with the following caption:

عارضة ازياء ايطالية تصور فيديو على الشاطئ وفجأة بطريقة عفوية وقع المحظور تصل دفعة لاجئين غير متوقعة الى شاطئ الامان في ايطاليا سوف تشتهر هده العارضة لهدا الموقف الظريف والعفوي الدي لايتكرر
معظمهم سوريين وفلسطينيين الحمد الله على السلامة

An Italian model is filming a video on the beach and suddenly the unexpected happened and a group of unexpected refugees arrives on the beach safely in Italy. This model will become famous for this funny and spontaneous incident which will not repeat itself. Most of them are Syrians and Palestinians. Thank God for their safety.

However, the model filming the video being shared far and wide is not Italian and the video itself is not even shot in Italy. And the refugees are neither Syrian nor Palestinian. The original video was published on July 10, 2015, on YouTube by US-based Russian model Ekaterina Juskowski with the description:

Ms. Juskowski, a Miami-based artist and a founder of the Miami Girls Foundation (www.miamigirls.org) “who migrated from Russia at age 18 as a university student – had a more compassionate take. She said, “Witnessing people starting their life anew by jumping off the boat and running into the city made my personal struggle seem rather small. As controversial as the problem of illegal immigration can be for many of us, it is important to remember that people come here in search of the better life, and it comes at a very high price of great courage, hard work, and loneliness. I got to know America as a country with a big heart. While I trust it to the U.S. government to work out the policies on improving the immigration laws, it feels natural to stay compassionate and understanding on a personal level.”

Story 2: A Syrian boy sleeping between his parents’ graves

“There’s a big chance you have seen this dramatic picture of a Syrian boy covered by a blanket sleeping between the two graves of his dead parents. It went viral after some big accounts published it [in January 2014] on Twitter,” reads Harld Doornbos Blog.

There is only one problem: The picture is not from Syria, but from Saudi Arabia. Photo credit haralddoornbos on wordpress

There is only one problem: The picture is not from Syria, but from Saudi Arabia. Photo credit haralddoornbos blog

The blog was maybe the first to investigate the case by contacting the photographer behind this story, Abdul Aziz al Otaibi, a Saudi national, from Yanbu al Bahr city. His nephew is the boy who appears in the photo:

“Look, it’s not true at all that my picture has anything to do with Syria,” Al-Otaibi says, “I am really shocked how people have twisted my picture.”

“I love photography,” he continues over the phone, “Every artist has ideas in his head. So I had the idea to make a project whereby I show in pictures how the love of a child for his parents is irreplaceable. This love cannot be substituted by anything or anybody else, even if the parents are dead.”

On Twitter, Abdul Aziz al Otaibi shared another photograph of his nephew in January 2014, hoping to set the story straight:

This is also photograph from behind the scenes with my nephew Ibrahim

Story 3: Immigrants refuse non-halal food

YouTube user komehtap K stated that Muslim refugees, on the border between Macedonia and Greece, refused the food parcels distributed to them because they carried the Red Cross symbol, which is, according to the author, not halal. While the video is true, this information is totally false.

According to Red Cross spokesman John Aangendal Nielsen speaking to French newspaper Liberation, refugees refusing the parcels was not related to the contents, which were halal, but was a kind of protest against the police who blocked their way and kept them stranded throughout the night under the rain.

On YouTube, komehtap K explains:

Muslim migrants in Macedonia refuse Red Cross parcels because of… the red cross
The headless chicken reaction by the leaders of the European Union regarding mass migration by hundreds of thousands of people has resulted in these so called refugees not only demanding to be allowed to go where they want to go, but insisting on subscribing to the religious bigotry they claim they are running away from.

Here on the Macedonian/Greek border Red Cross aid parcels are being refused due to them having a red cross on the box. And the left call me a bigot for questioning the veracity of these so called refugees

And on Twitter, many reacted with anger at the “ingratitude” of the refugees:

Story 4: The photoshopped image of a Syrian mother at sea

A photograph of reportedly a Syrian mother trying to swim to safety carrying her toddler child. Photo gone viral (source unknown)

A Syrian mother trying to swim to safety carrying her toddler child. Photo gone viral (source unknown), but it isn’t what it seems to be.

This photograph of a Syrian mother struggling at sea has been making the rounds online. But something is amiss. Netizens were quick to notice that the photograph was photoshopped, covering the woman’s hair. Omneya Talaat tweets:

When society is only concerned with covering a woman’s hair and not providing her with a dignified life, then it is a society on its way to oblivion. There is nothing to argue about here

The blog Phogotraphy asked why a doctored photograph is being used to highlight the plight of Syrian refugees:

This terrifying photograph shows Syrian refugee Rukhsan Muhammed who was rescued off the coast of Turkey in 2013 after the boat she and her son were on capsized. Without the need for an expert’s inspection it is clear that a white headscarf has been crudely applied to the photograph using digital tools.

The moment captured is one of utter despair, indeed since the photograph was taken we learned that Rukhsan had been in the water with her one year old son who was washed away and drowned by the strong currents. So why trivialise this awful situation by drawing on a headscarf to protect this poor woman’s modesty?

Does her dress matter? Phogotraphy explained:

Of course underneath any clothing is a human being, a mother who has lost her child and nearly her own life. We want to care about this person and if she lived to tell of her ordeal. Within the series of images from the Anadolu Agency we can see that Rukhsan was thankfully rescued and what is striking to us now is not a story of survival, but further insight to her clothing. We can see now, clearly that she dresses like us, The West. During rising xenophobia in Europe being prevalent surely a more effective way of realising our compassion is by showing the world we are all the same.

Refugees arriving in Europe are escaping the fate of 320,000 Syrians who have been killed back home in Syria since the start of the war in their country four years ago. They have risked it all to ensure their future and that of their children. Should they be judged for aspiring to live?

Posted in Arab Spring, Arabic, Crises, Culture & Life, English, Photos, Video | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Buy a Pen, Save a Life. How a Syrian Father Inspired Fundraising his Cause

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Abdul and his daughter Reem in streets of Beirut. Mixed photos of indiegogo website

This Post was originally written for Global Voices

Always we talk about the social media powerful way of changing lives. If you haven’t heard trending story on Twitter and Facebook for the last week, read this noble story of world collaborating to help a Syrian refugee father who carry his sleeping daughter selling pens in streets of Beirut, Lebanon to fund his survival.

When your country in a war and you see your people under siege suffering hunger and exposing to death, you’d prefer to escape with your kids for a shelter and look for minimum reasons to survive. Abdul Halim Attar is one of over a million Syrian refugees who flee to Lebanon, a Palestinian Syrian from the Yarmouk camp in Damascus. He’s a single father with 2 children, Reem and Abdelillah

The story started with this tweet on 25th of Aug when Gissur Simonarson (@GissiSim) an Iceland activist posted a photo of Abdul, a Syrian refugee, selling pens and surprised with a tsunami of sympathy and compassion. The tweet shared 6K and favorited 2.8K. The day next, Simonarson set the twitter account @Buy_Pens for further introduction of Abdul story to the public, looking for him and setup the strategy in 3 points.

News portals and TV rush to the scoop case, SKYNEWS, CNN, ALJAZEERA, NBC, BBC, Mirror, while working with Carol Malouf (@carolmalouf) representing the NGO @leb4refugees on ground to meet Abdul urgent needs.

The campaign set to reach $5,000 USD goal in 15 days, however, until writing this material, it succeed in gathering $168,884 USD, raised by 6,375 people in 5 days. The money comes from USA, UK, Saudi Arabia, UAE among other countries in Middle East and Europe.

On how to spend the money raised on his cause, Abdul answered in one phrase: to raise and educate his own children.

So next time when you wonder a way to help any needy, be inspired by this story and donate your time, money or even a tweet, still have 9 days before accomplishing this noble achievement.

Screenshot of "Help Abdul and Reem start a new life" funding campaign on indiegogo.

Screenshot of “Help Abdul and Reem start a new life” funding campaign on indiegogo.

Posted in Arab Spring, Crises, Culture & Life, English, Eudcation & Human Rights, Photos | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

A Creative Lesson to Who Mess with traffic Laws in Brazil

A video of publicly shamed driver who parked in disabled parking has almost 6 millions views on YouTube, Canal Boom in Brazil, who decided to teach unlucky man a lighthearted lesson.

The car was fully covered with thousands of blue and white sticky post-it notes arranged in the International Symbol of Access. When the driver arrived after a while, he found his car surrounded by crowds whistling and accusing him of outlaw, to make it worse he got surprise of traffic police ready to fine.

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Yarmouk Camp Between The Hunger Hammer and The Extremism Anvil

Syrian-Palestinians are eating from the garbage.

Syrian-Palestinian eating from the garbage. Photo taken 03/03/2015 by LensDimashqi on Tumblr. Used under CC.BY. 2.0

This Post was originally written for Global Voices

After almost 2 years of siege, crisis in the Yarmouk Palestinian refugees camp in Syria worsened since ISIS invasion in 1st of April 2015. Both Assad regime and ISIS are rushing to take the camp by force. Around10 miles away from the presidential palace, Assad start bombing by dropping barrels bombs over the head of the people who retreated to their food-empty residences and afraid to take streets full of armed extremists, while according to news being circulated on social media, ISIS is arresting, executing and beheading the camp figures and clashing with other oppositions armed groups.

Many activists blame ISIS invasion to Assad regime’s army loose and pointed out that at a time when it is impossible to enter food and medical aid to the Palestinian refugee camp, ISIS appeared suddenly inside the camp.

The Hammer, Hunger to Death

“To know what it is like in Yarmouk, turn off your electricity, water, heating, eat once a day, live in the dark, live by burning wood.” – Anas, Yarmouk resident.

According to Unrwa, this is the situation of 18,000 Palestinian refugees -Of the 160,000 used to live in the camp- remain trapped in Yarmouk Camp of Damascus with no successful distribution has been completed since 6 December 2014. Though that people took the streets on January 18th to protest the siege imposed by the Assad regime since July 2013, the crisis yet leaving at least 200 people dead from starvation. After a year of posting a video showing the desperate of distributing food in Yarmouk Camp-Syria, yet, the documentary “Siege” emerges from the heart of the camp in 3rd of April. The short film records the daily life in four sketches reflect people’s suffers of food and utilities shortage.

Another video posted in 6th of Feb, 2015 by sami alselwadi shows a Palestinian refugee resident blames his government of leaving the camp to starve to death without taking an action against Assad regime. Then the footage move to a what believe a truck full of bread been distributed to people by throwing the packages to the air for a lucky catcher. In his words, the man blame Abbas, the Palestinian president:

All this is hunger, Abbas. You are in Ramalla, and you don’t know what your Palestinian people is suffering here. Thousands of people are in hunger here. Where are you from this? Shame on you.

ISIS claims it is there to help the besieged refugees of Yarmouk Camp. But this is what they do.

ISIS claims it is there to help the besieged refugees of Yarmouk Camp. But this is what they do. Photo via @AlaaAllagta. Used under CC. BY 2.0

The anvil, Extremism to Death

As on 1st of April, reports on social media confirmed that Islamic State has entered the besieged camp and controls 90% of the area. Netizens roam the news flood of this dramatic development where Twitter users reported that ISIS entered the camp after ALNusra front, affiliate of ALQaeda in Levant, eases their sneaking from Hajar Aswad, neighboring town.

Tom Finn and Linah Alsaafin explain the sudden appearance of ISIS and how they approach the camp from neighbor town.

While Talal Alyan shares a photo from inside the camp.

A map of the parties who control the camp was shared by Rami Allolah to his 16K followers showing the fragmented area controlled between ISIS, Palestinians armed groups, FSA (Free Syrian Army), Assad army and ALNusrah.

Activists didn’t wait for long to report ISIS horrifying and killing news which start to spill into the news stream as Raqqa_SI confirmed to his +21K followers.

Posted in Arab Spring, Arabic, Crises, Culture & Life, English, History, Photos, Video | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Death under torture in Syria: the horrors ignored by pacifists

Khaled was arrested by Syrian regime security forces in January 2013 for his leading role in organising and carrying out humanitarian and aid work in Yarmouk Refugee Camp. On 11 September, the Yarmouk coordination committee and Jafra Foundation reported that Khaled was killed under torture in one of the several infamous intelligence branches in Damascus.

Random Shelling قصف عشوائي

Budour Hassan
Publised in TheRepublicGS.netArabic, Italian (thanks to Enrico Barolomei)

Perhaps one of the cruellest aspects of the Syrian regime’s war on the Syrian population is its success in normalising death and desensitising the world to its harrowing massacres. Missing from the six-digit death toll are the charred faces and untold stories of the martyrs, and of the suffering inflicted upon the loved ones they leave behind. As one Syrian activist put it: «One thing I will never forgive Bashar al-Assad for is denying us the chance to grieve over our martyred friends». Indeed, with mass-murder turning into a horrifyingly frequent occurrence two-and-a-half years on, mourning the fallen has become a luxury most Syrians are deprived of.

dutorture

Dehumanising Syrians

The dehumanisation of Syrians was painfully illustrated by the debate that ensued after the chemical weapons attack on 21 August in the Damascus countryside. The victims were treated…

View original post 1,543 more words

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Western Women Don’t Care If They Are Raped on Roadside, We do!

This Post was originally written for Global Voices

A screenshot of Youtube video. Used under CC BY 2.0

A screenshot of Youtube video. Used under CC BY 2.0

Another episode of Saudi Arabia women drive rights was highlighted in international and social media earlier this January 2015. Dr. Saleh Al-Saadoon claimed on Rotana Khalijia, a national TV directed to GCC countries, that ‘Western women who drive don’t care if they’re raped’ in his defense of prohibiting Saudi women of driving in the kingdom.

The new comments come in a continuous national dialogue of women right to drive in Saudi Arabia, the sole country in the world that officially prohibit women from driving cars. There were many tries to break the ban, most widely in October 26th, 2013 when dozens of women shared videos driving cars in the day they plan on defying the ban.

Saudi “historian” notes that:

Unlike riding a camel, driving a car places a woman in danger of being raped, which for Saudi women is a much worse experience than for any women in the western world where women “don’t care” if they are raped.

To make his interview worse, he suggested a solution to import “foreign female drivers” to drive the Saudis women to prevent a potential rape by contracted male drivers. The video posted on Youtube by The Husky is in Arabic and subtitled to English by MEMRI.

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Six Syrian Cartoonists Who Dare to Mock Assad

This Post was originally written for Global Voices

One of Akram Ruslan's cartoons that outraged Assad regime. Source: Cartoon Movement Blog. Used under CC BY 2.0

One of Akram Ruslan’s cartoons that outraged Assad regime. Source: Cartoon Movement Blog. Used under CC BY 2.0

Featuring dictators considered among the greatest taboo freedom of expression and possible life-danger of cartoonists’ anywhere, anytime. Syrian cartoonist is not an exception as they suffered torture, loyalists attacks, and even death. Cartoons they draw yet reflecting lives of millions of Syrians and Arabs, nonetheless, have fund their way online through four years of uprising against Assad regime thanks to social media “free spaces”.

Assad acts towards his people have inspired Arab and foreign cartoonists who flooded the printed, digital, and social media portals with thousands of examples. We have sorted out 6 of Syrian artists with a short bio of each presented in a random order.

Not to forget, honorably, we have to mention 2 Syrian artists who suffered the most: Ali Farzat, internationally awarded artist, who has been beat up in exchange of mocking Assad in early days of the Syrian revolution, and Akram Ruslan who detained and reported killed for the same reason.

1. Hussam Sara

One of early revolution activists posting his drawing on his Facebook page. Worked for several Arabic newspapers in Bahrain. He is son of Fayez Sara, an opposition leader and a brother of Wisam Sarah, a martyr pacific activist who had been tortured to death in Assad prisons in Feb 2014. Hussam suffered [Ar] a physical attack in Bahrain as he draws Assad clearly in his work.

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Assad via Hussam Sara Facebook Page. Used with permission.

2. Kamiran Shemdin

Born in al-Qamishli, 1974, published his cartoons in Aljazeera website and Ge P magazine in Iraqi Kurdistan. In an interview with SyriaUtold he says: “The sight of the thousands of Syrians marching in the streets without fear and calling for the downfall of the regime gave me a feeling of solace and of being free myself. Despite my exile, I was a part of them with all my feelings.”

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Assad via Kamiran Shemdin Facebook page. Used under CC BY 2.0

3. Amer M. Zughbi

Amer worked in several Arab newspapers, currently working Albayan in UAE newspaper and publishing on the AlJazeera website. He Won the Arab Journalism Award for best cartoonist in the Arab newspapers and publications for three times 2007, 2009 and 2013.

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Assad via Amer M. Zohbi Facebook page. Used under CC BY 2.0

4. Firas Bachi

Born in 1979 in Damascus, has a B.A. in Economics in 2003 but still in love with art & drawing. Cartoonist, Caricaturist, and Advertising Art Director. On his Facebook page he describes his cartoons as: “againstall forms of dictatorship politics, human injustice, suppression & oppression, racism & discrimination. cartoons that dig to expose the fuzzy scenes in a world of injustice where surrendering suddenly became a habit, and supporting the unjust became a worship.” More of his works on FirasBachi.com

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Assad as Pheron, Nobody stopped him. Source: Firas Bachi Facebook page. Used with permission.

5. Ahmad Jalal

Do you remember the infamous people of “Liberated Kafranbel” holding creative cartoons banners? Ahmed is behind them. His hobby before the revolution, turn him to be known as “Kafranbel Cartoonist”. He works within a group of young people filled with irony spirit and creativity in their village in the countryside of Idlib, Syria.

Assad and ISIS via Ahmed Jall Facebook Page. Used under CC BY 2.0

Assad and ISIS via Ahmed Jalal Facebook Page. Used under CC BY 2.0

6. Saad Hajo

Born in Damascus in 1968, graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts, work in in “An-Nahar” and “ambassador” newspapers in Beirut, Lebanon. He has several published books, one of which tilted “بلاد العنف أوطاني” (meaning countries of violence are my homeland). Winner of the “Gabrovo Carton” award of humor and biennial art, 2005 Bulgaria.

Assad as eye doctor via Saad Hajo Facebook Page. Used under CC BY 2.0

Assad as eye doctor via Saad Hajo Facebook Page. Used under CC BY 2.0

Posted in Arab Spring, Arabic, Cartoon, Crises, Culture & Life, English, Eudcation & Human Rights, Photos | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Video: What happened when a truck loaded with bread entre besiged Yarmouk camp in Syria

This Post was originally written for Global Voices

”To know what it is like in Yarmouk, turn off your electricity, water, heating, eat once a day, live in the dark, live by burning wood” – Anas, Yarmouk resident.

According to Unrwa, this is the situation of 18,000 Palestinian refugees -Of the 160,000 used to live in the camp- remain trapped in Yarmouk Camp of Damascus with no successful distribution has been completed since 6 December 2014. Though that people took the streets on January 18th to protest the siege imposed by the Assad regime since July 2013, the crisis yet leaving at least 200 people dead from starvation. After a year of posting similar video of distributing food in Yarmouk Camp-Syria, here is another video recording the desperate people of the same besieged camp.

This recently posted video in 6th of Feb, 2015 by sami alselwadi shows a Palestinian refugee resident blames his government of leaving the camp to starve to death without taking an action against Assad regime. Then the footage move to a what believe a truck full of bread been distributed to people by throwing the packages to the air for a lucky catcher. In his words, the man blame Abbas, the Palestinian president:

All this is hunger, Abbas. You are in Ramalla, and you don’t know what your Palestinian people is suffering here. Thousands of people are in hunger here. Where are you from this? Shame on you.

No change in Assad strategy nor the world humanitarian responses but the only difference is the date.

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