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A bird's eye view of the vineyard
Trade ? States ? Markets Fri Jun 24, 2022 15:37 | amarynth
by Francis Lee for the Saker Blog The customary argument that ?free-trade? promotes global growth will, given an appropriate policy mixture of specialisation and comparative advantage, result in a rise
Open Thread for today Fri Jun 24, 2022 13:12 | amarynth
This is an open thread for discussion of everything Saker related. Two notes to start it off: The Russian MoD released a very interesting additional statement, beyond their usual factual
BRICS Summit Fri Jun 24, 2022 11:58 | amarynth
Vladimir Putin took part in the 14th BRICS Summit, held via videoconference and chaired by China. The meeting?s topic is Foster High-Quality BRICS Partnership, Usher in a New Era for Global Development. President of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro, President
Sergey Lavrov?s Presser at a joint news conference with Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iran Hossein ... Fri Jun 24, 2022 11:48 | amarynth
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov?s statement and answers to media questions at a joint news conference following talks with Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iran Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Tehran, June 23, 2022
About Telegram Thu Jun 23, 2022 23:37 | amarynth
Quickie news by Amarynth We all started using Telegram when the Russian voice was completely blocked, just after the Ukraine SMO started. I remember very clearly a 2 week period
The Saker >>
Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005
RTE bias complaint
Fergus Finlay and the maternity hospital ‘gotcha’ trap Anthony
Irish Examiner and fake news Anthony
Labour Party: The unvarnished truth Anthony
Humanity: Zero chance of survival Anthony
Public Inquiry >>
A Blog About Human Rights
UN human rights chief calls for priority action ahead of climate summit Sat Oct 30, 2021 17:18 | Human Rights
5 Year Anniversary Of Kem Ley?s Death Sun Jul 11, 2021 12:34 | Human Rights
Poor Living Conditions for Migrants in Southern Italy Mon Jan 18, 2021 10:14 | Human Rights
Right to Water Mon Aug 03, 2020 19:13 | Human Rights
Human Rights Fri Mar 20, 2020 16:33 | Human Rights
Human Rights in Ireland >>
News Round-Up Sat Jun 25, 2022 00:24 | Will Jones
A summary of all the most interesting stories that have appeared about politicians? efforts to control the virus ? and other acts of hubris and folly ? not just in Britain, but around the world.
The post News Round-Up appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
How Did Universities Become Woke Madrassas? Fri Jun 24, 2022 18:44 | Toby Young
Why have students turned their backs on free speech? According to an excellent piece in UnHerd by Matthew Goodwin, it's a combination of generational change, victimhood culture and the marketisation of universities.
The post How Did Universities Become Woke Madrassas? appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
Climate Scientist Says Humans Cause Less Than 0.05°C of Global Warming and Warns of ?Anarchy? From ?... Fri Jun 24, 2022 14:02 | Chris Morrison
One of Germany's most distinguished atmospheric scientists has castigated politicians for their climate alarmism and called the idea that humans can control the climate with their CO2 emissions an ?absolute delusion?.
The post Climate Scientist Says Humans Cause Less Than 0.05°C of Global Warming and Warns of ?Anarchy? From “Delusional” Net Zero Policies appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
BBC Boycotts Mayor?s Briefings After Bristol Council Banned Reporter for Quizzing him over 9,000-Mil... Fri Jun 24, 2022 12:42 | Will Jones
The BBC is boycotting mayoral briefings in Bristol after the council banned a reporter for asking a Labour politician why he flew across the Atlantic to give a 14-minute speech on climate change.
The post BBC Boycotts Mayor’s Briefings After Bristol Council Banned Reporter for Quizzing him over 9,000-Mile Flight for Climate Conference appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
Masks are Not Protective, Says Health & Safety Executive Fri Jun 24, 2022 10:10 | Niall McCrae
The NHS dropped its national requirement for face masks in hospitals last month, yet many hospitals continue to insist on them. But why, when the Health & Safety Executive is clear that they do not provide protection?
The post Masks are Not Protective, Says Health & Safety Executive appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
Lockdown Skeptics >>
A Visit with an H Block Prisoner
crime and justice |
Wednesday December 13, 2017 00:26 by Michael Steinbertg - Black Rain Press blackrainpress at hotmail dot com
Last August (1990) I was among a delegation from Irish Northern Aid (Noraid), which visited current prisoners in Long Kesh.
A VISIT WITH AN H BLOCK PRISONER
In 1981 the deaths of 10 Irish hunger strikers in the H Blocks of Britain's Long Kesh prison in Northern Ireland brought the Irish struggle for freedom starkly to the world's attention.
Bobby Sands and the other 9 men who died were fighting specifically to be recognized as political prisoners, prisoners of war in a liberation struggle against 800 years of British occupation and oppression.
British authorities did grant "special category" status to Irish political prisoners until the mid-1970s. When the British withdrew this status in 1976, protests by both men and women prisoners began immediately, climaxing in the 1980-81 hunger strikes.
Today (1190) all of the hunger strikers who died would have served out their sentences. Soon after their deaths British prison authorities began quietly granting all the hunger strikers demands, with one big exception: formal recognition of political prisoner status.
Last August (1990) I was among a delegation from Irish Northern Aid (Noraid), which visited current prisoners in Long Kesh.
Noraid is a North American group that raises funds to help support the families of Irish political prisoners. It also publishes information that counters the British propaganda machine, financed by that government to the tune of $600 million annually in North America.
Our busload of 44 visitors pulled up to the main gate of Long Kesh after a short ride from Belfast on the afternoon of August 7. Belfast and Long Kesh are both in Antrim, 1 of 6 counties still occupied by the British in northeast Ireland. Like prisons worldwide, Long Kesh is gray, ugly and foreboding.
A remote controlled gate wrenchingly ground open and we filed in past the barbed wire above and across an empty yard towards a receiving station. A clumsily camouflaged guard tower didn't do much to conceal heavily armed guards lurking about behind hanging potted plants.
Each of us had been given a visit pass. On it was the name and prison number of the prisoner we were to visit. Most of us were paired off for our visits. My partner and I were to see Peter Corbett, #2035.
We had been instructed that we would be allowed to bring in only cigarettes and a small amount of loose change. We also had been told that we would be searched , but the that if the guards tried to strip search us, we should refuse. We would lose out on the visit, but the prisoners had communicated that they would rather this happen than be subjected to this indignity, which they and their families have suffered many times.
Guards behind bullet proof glass took our passes looked us over passed them back without looking at us, and directed us to the waiting room. Colorful wall paintings of Donald Duck, Goofy and friends were a bizarre contrast to the tense atmosphere.
Each of us was separately called into a small bleak room where a guard ordered us to empty our pockets onto a table where he sat. A second guard stood behind us and body searched us.
From there we were led to a vehicle that transported us to the visiting area. We climbed in the back of the vehicle where doors closed automatically, sealing us in it. We could see neither who was driving us nor where we were going.
I did manage to locate to locate a narrow slit in the back through which I could see us moving across a huge bare area. Several times along the way we stopped and the back doors flew open to reveal armed guards looking in on us. We also made a few turns, though whether this was necessary or a deliberate attempt to confuse us is hard to say.
Finally we were let out at the visiting area. More guards led us into another waiting room, surrounded by more high walls and razor wire.
My visitation partner and I were the last 2 to be called into the waiting room itself Our summons was the same as at all the other stations: "#2035, Corbett."
The visiting room consisted of a series of attached benches and tables crowded into an oppressively small space. At each table people hunched together trying to make themselves heard amidst a buzz of noise in the half hour allotted. Expressions of happiness and humor, longing and loneliness filled their faces. Couples embraced and children yelled and scampered.
Once inside the room the guards guards did no direct us to Peter Corbett. Instead we wandered amidst the din in the back, where we found him standing and waiting for us eagerly.
He asked us to sit down after shaking our hands, and immediately set us at ease, offering us cold drinks and candy bars. Both of us non-smokers offered him cigarettes from the packs we'd brought in, but he smiled and told us he didn't smoke either.
Peter was wearing a brightly colored surfer duck shirt tee shirt and a sporty windbreaker jacket. The right to refuse a prison uniform and wear one's own clothes was 1 of the demands of the hunger strikers.
He told us he prefers the name Peadar, the Irish version of Peter. He is 21, and from the Ardoyne section of North Belfast, a small nationalist community surround by loyalists.
Nationalists want Northern Ireland to be united with the rest of Ireland, and usually but not always are Catholic. Loyalists want Northern Ireland to stay under British rule and are usually Protestant. Loyalists are descendants of people from Scotland who were given plantations in Ireland in return for conquering the native people. Nationalists of those whose land liberty was stolen.
In 1969, around the time Peadar Corbett was born, loyalist police mobs invaded the Ardoyne and other parts of Belfast in reaction to a growing nationalist civil rights movement. These mobs, the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC), raided nationalist areas, and then allowed loyalist gangs to fire bomb and burn peoples homes to the ground. Nationalists were also injured and killed.
That was the world Peadar Corbett was born into. That same year, 1969, British army troops were sent in, supposedly as peace keepers between 2 warring communities. However, they soon showed themselves to be supporters of the loyalist power structure, and acted as military occupiers of nationalist communities.
To defend themselves, nationalists reactivated the Irish Republican Army (IRA) as a fighting force. In doing so, they drew mostly from the community's youth. Today, 21 year's later Peadar Corbett's life exemplifies the Irish struggle to rid the land of British tyranny.
Peadar has been in Long Kesh for 2 years, accused of a bombing on the word of an informer. He was given a sentence of 17 years, and has a minimum of 6 to go before he will be eligible for parole.
Peadar explained to us how each block of the prison is shaped like an H, with 4 wings at the ends, and the prison guard control unit in the middle. But this control is itself controlled by the prisoners. These POWs don't do prison work, have their own organizations and educational programs, and only take orders from their own wing officers. These rights too were demands of the hunger strikers.
Though young in years and appearance, Peadar Corbett demonstrated during our brief meeting a shrewd intelligence, political maturity, and keen interest and knowledge of events in Ireland, the US, and around the world. Though he has lived his life in extraordinary circumstances, he does not pretend to be anything other than an ordinary person fighting to be free.
The combined forces of the British Army and RUC today number 30,000 in the 6 Irish counties they continue to occupy by force. The IRA's fighting force is estimated at about 300. Yet the IRA strikes at will, supported by a network that runs deep into nationalist communities.
Since 1969 the British British have tried a series of repressive measures to obliterate the IRA and quelch the nationalist people's freedom movement. This has included internment without trial, massive house raids, constant stop and searches, blanket overt and covert surveillance, mass perjury trials, torture, shoot to kill, and death squad murders of innocent nationalists.
Such death squad assassinations are frequent in Peadar Corbett's home of Ardoyne.
Political prisoners such as Peadar are tried in jury less courts, as marksmen train guns on them and British helicopters hover over the courtrooms. The 3 judges present wear bulletproof vests and are usually members of the Orange Order, whose attitude towards nationalists are equivalent to the KKK's towards African Americans.
In spite of all this the Irish freedom movement continues to grow, and it seems that only the reactionary national pride of Margaret Thatcher and her kind is delaying the inevitable withdrawal of Britain from Ireland.
Before we know it the guards are telling us to wrap it up. But we keep talking until we come to a natural stopping place. Then we exchange addresses and say reluctant goodbyes. Since we were the last in, we were the last out as well. The rest of the room was now empty, except for the considerable number of edgy prison guards.
As Peadar led the guards out of the room, he quickly flashed us a final smile and a special signal. The signal stood for IRA, and the smile for victory. The guards, of course, missed it all.
We solemnly filed back onto the awaiting vehicle, which again sealed us in, and then deposited us at the visitor exit. This led us back across the yard and out the gate we had entered.
Outside the gate we weren't saying much, but we were looking back with a mixture of sadness and rage. In a small act of defiance, a number of us snapped away with our cameras, in violation of British law.
A clipped voice came over the loudspeaker: "Please refrain from taking pictures of Her Majesty's Prison." Then the gate again wrenchingly slid to close and shut with the crash of an empire's final falling.