Marching Toward Justice
by C.A. Matthews
(I’m carrying the “Close Guantanamo” sign in this video https://www.facebook.com/reel/
No justice. No peace!
Know justice. Know peace!
I wore an orange jumpsuit and a black hood over my head this past Thursday (January 11) for two hours. I, along with a couple dozen activists, marched around our county courthouse chanting the above chant as well as many others concerning justice, freedom, and for the end of unjust detention and torture. Ours and many other protests worldwide this week marked the twenty-second anniversary of the opening of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp, an extrajudicial prison operated by the US military that has held hundreds of men, many without charge, for the past 22 years.
There are currently thirty souls still detained at Guantanamo, sixteen of whom were supposed to have been released many years ago, but they haven’t been because the US simply doesn’t release these individuals to go back to their homes and families. They are only released to other countries that are willing to lock them up again behind bars or keep a close eye on them. You’re not really being “freed” if you’re simply placed into another prison or detention set-up without a trial and without a chance to see your family again, are you?
There are many parallels between the detainees of Guantanamo and the detainees of the open-air concentration camp known as Gaza. You can learn a lot (I sure did) from the following webinars. I recommend you watch them and share the links with others. Together, we can pull down the walls of unjust detention and tear down the torture chambers that have been built with US taxpayer dollars and used to destroy others in our names.
From Guantánamo to Gaza: Resisting State Violence and Occupation https://www.youtube.com/live/
From Guantánamo to Gaza: Where Do We Go From Here?
If you feel so moved, please donate to the Guantanamo Survivors’ Fund. If and when a detainee is finally released, he receives no help in making the transition from imprisonment to life outside. He's given no money, no housing, no clothing, and no medical help to deal with his trauma of both mind and body. Please give generously if you’re able and share the link with others.
No justice. No peace.
And since I’m sharing video links, here are some well worth a look. These are the testimonies given at the International Court of Justice at The Hague by legal representatives from the Republic of South Africa and from the state of Israel this past week. The case presented by South Africa is well argued and, without a doubt, revealing of the true natures of Israel's leaders. The South Africans very wisely didn’t state that “Israel is calling for a genocide”—they simply quoted Israeli officials who openly called for the “elimination” or “complete annihilation” of the Palestinian people or the “human animals” of Gaza as the Israeli Defense minister named them. Their own hideously racist words will damn them.
Day 1 of SA v Israel on Genocide at World Court
22-Minute Speech Details Israeli Officials' Genocidal Statements at ICJ https://www.commondreams.org/
In a perfect world, a ruling would be announced right away, but it will probably be two or three weeks (or more) until the world hears back from the ICJ justices. It is a very biased and political court from what I’ve learned. Judges from countries that have had similar charges made against them in the past might not want to judge Israel guilty of the same crime in fear it could come back and bite their country at some point. The ICJ in reality, however, has little to no "bite" and no way to hold countries accountable for their war crimes, alas. Politics trumps justice in this imperfect world.
No justice. No peace.
And now for our third story concerning the march toward justice this past week, The National March on Washington for Gaza (livestreamed in its entirety via BreakThrough News.)
“No country that supports genocide will ever flourish! ...Take a look at our irrational relationship with Israel!”-- Sh. Yasir Qadhi, a speaker at the March
“I don’t feel safe as a Palestinian.” – Anees, a Palestinian-American artist reading his poem in front of 400,000 people at the March
Biden, Biden you can’t hide! You’re supporting genocide!
Your silence is a license for Israeli violence!
We will free Palestine...within our lifetime!
From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!
I wish I could have attended the massive National March on Washington for Gaza this past weekend, but the march around the courthouse in the cold and damp earlier in the week was about all my old body could take for a while. The buses from our city heading toward DC were full, so I knew we would be well represented there.
Independent journalists broadcast live coverage on You Tube of all the rally speakers and the march to the White House to let “Genocide Joe” know that the majority of Americans want an end to the bombing of Gaza and a permanent ceasefire. BreakThrough News was the only media group that I could find online that followed all the events of the day. Once again, the American mainstream media purposefully ignored an anti-genocide/pro-Palestinian event in the nation’s capital in order to suppress its message and public knowledge of its large turn out.
Ceasefire now! Ceasefire now!
Stein was in good form. Wearing shades of blue, the wind blowing
through her silver-white hair, she boldly proclaimed to the crowd as she
took the stage, “I see power! I see justice! I see democracy as far as
the eye can see!” She ended with, “You have the power! Remember, we have
the power to change history. Together we are unstoppable!” Jill is
collecting names for a pledge demanding an end to the genocide at her
campaign web site now: https://www.jillstein2024.com/
You can watch Jill Stein's speech here: https://youtu.be/ooUatY8IATc?si=UFqvmOq6kQEgh6gu
The solidarity of the different groups of marchers was lovely to see. A young activist said of Joe Biden when asked why the president continued to send money and arms to Israel: “It’s not the eyes that are blind; it’s the heart that is blind.” “(Biden is) an excuse of a president,” another marcher told a reporter with BreakThrough News. “We are tired of being second class citizens in our own country.”
Very telling comments on this, the weekend of American civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday. If Dr. King were alive today, no doubt he would have gone to DC and marched, proudly carrying a Palestinian flag.
“There’s no turning back,” said Liane, an activist with the Shut It Down For Palestine Coalition as she stood outside of the White House’s double-fence in the bitter cold after sunset. “Biden has lost legitimacy. No one running in either of the two parties has any legitimacy. Consciousness has been raised.”
There is no justice and no peace yet for the beleaguered people of Palestine, but at least there is some hope on the horizon. And so we will continue marching on toward justice.
Related Articles and Interesting Links
The National March on Washington for Gaza, January 13, 2024 https://www.youtube.com/live/
Genocide is not a political problem. It is a moral one. We cannot, no matter what the cost, support those who commit or are accomplices to genocide. Genocide is the crime of all crimes. It is the purest expression of evil. We must stand unequivocally with Palestinians and the jurists from South Africa. We must demand justice. We must hold Biden accountable for the genocide in Gaza.
‘The Evidence of Genocide Is Not Only Chilling, It Is Also Overwhelming and Incontrovertible’
What Israel Faces at The Hague
South Africa’s Impassioned Plea to Stop Israel’s Genocide https://scheerpost.com/2024/
Your Man in the Hague (in a Good Way).
US and UK Bomb Yemen, Israel's Pathetic Defense at the International Court of Justice, and More
Give to the Guantanamo Survivors Fund https://www.nogitmos.org/
An Ex-CIA Agent Looks Back at 22 Years of Torture at Guantánamo Bay https://scheerpost.com/2024/
Accountability and Legacy at Guantanamo: Some Progress, Still A Long Way to Go https://www.justsecurity.org/
Gaza crisis: another hospital facing dire shortages, warns WHO
Pro-Palestinian household targeted with bomb in Sydney, Australia
Westerners Have An Absolutely Psychotic View Of Airstrikes https://www.caitlinjohnst.one/p/westerners-have-an-absolutely-psychotic
Western Empire Bombs Yemen To Protect Israel's Genocide Operations In Gaza https://www.caitlinjohnst.one/p/western-empire-bombs-yemen-to-protect
US and UK launch war against Yemen https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2024/01/12/vgxz-j12.html
US and UK Bomb Dozens of Sites in Yemen https://news.antiwar.com/2024/01/11/us-and-uk-bomb-dozens-of-sites-in-yemen/
We Could Try Simply NOT Provoking A Wider War Via The Continued Destruction Of Gaza https://www.caitlinjohnst.one/p/we-could-try-simply-not-provoking
Biden Is Everything People Feared Trump Would Be
If You've Just Started Paying Attention To US Foreign Policy
We badly need the kind of critical reporting that WikiLeaks supplied on the crimes of the “war on terror”
Abby Martin Explains Why Israel Will Never Be The Same
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