Sunday, November 24, 2013

Human Rights Day Event: Screening 'Dirty Wars' Documentary

Screening of film "Dirty Wars" In Woodbury Room, Jones Library to mark the 65th

 Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human


Each year the Amnesty International Chapter in Amherst celebrates Human Rights Day, the day in 1948 when the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, by sending a message of hope to human rights defenders. 

This year, along with other local human rights and religious organizations, we are screening the award-winning film "Dirty Wars" that depicts a journalistic investigation of the enigmatic and potent Joint Special Operations Command. The documentary, directed by Richard Rowley, is based on the book by New York Times international bestselling author Jeremy Scahill. The film dramatically unfolds as “part political thriller and part detective story.” And along this journey, we learn shocking aspects of our country’s secret operations that transpire in the name of our War on Terrorism.

The screening will be followed by a discussion as well as announcements from co-sponsoring organizations and light refreshments. The event is free and open to the public.

We also will ask attendees to sign petitions and write personal letters of support and encouragement to several prisoners of conscience. This year, Amnesty International chapters from the entire Northeast region are focusing on the release of a Tibetan filmmaker Dhondup Wangchen who has been imprisoned in China for almost six years “for subversion of state power.” He had produced a film about how his fellow Tibetans felt about the Olympics and human rights issues; he has endured a secret trial, torture and ill-treatment of a serious medical illness, Hepatitis B. We are also calling for his access to legal, medical, and familial assistance.
More about the film "Dirty Wars," quoted from the

“Part political thriller and part detective story, Dirty Wars is a gripping journey into one of the most important and underreported stories of our time. What begins as a report into a U.S. night raid gone terribly wrong in a remote corner of Afghanistan quickly turns into a global investigation of the secretive and powerful Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC).
[It is] a world of covert operations unknown to the public and carried out across the globe by men who do not exist on paper and will never appear before Congress. In military jargon, JSOC teams “find, fix, and finish” their targets, who are selected through a secret process. No target is off limits for the “kill list,” including U.S. citizens.
We encounter two parallel casts of characters.
The CIA agents, Special Forces operators, military generals, and U.S.-backed warlords who populate the dark side of American wars go on camera and on the record, some for the first time.
We also see and hear directly from survivors of night raids and drone strikes, including the family of the first American citizen marked for death and being hunted by his own government.

40 Lashes for not covering your hair?

 Amnesty International-UK started an international campaign on behalf of this brave women's activist

Amira is a civil engineer and women’s rights activist. She has been charged with being in public with her head uncovered, and will soon go on trial in Sudan.
Following her hearing on November 4, 2013, Ms. Osman Hamed awaits the results of her prosecution. If found guilty, she could be sentenced with up to 40 lashes as punishment. Amira Osman Hamed recently said, “This case is not my own, it is a cause of all the Sudanese people who are being humiliated in their country, and their sisters, mothers, daughters, and colleagues are being flogged.” Flogging is a real threat in Sudan. A harrowing video from October shows a woman being lashed in the street by police for entering a car with a man who was not a family member.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

A message from Ayatollah Boroujerdi (POC)

These excerpts from different messages translated by this Blogger dedicated to Ayatollah Boroujerdi (our adopted Prisoner of Conscious) on the occasion of his eight years in prison. 

"Greetings of the meek to the Almighty who at no time neglected to caress his creatures; the Almighty who neither commanded violence, nor ever sent forth a prophet to abuse believers, and whose commandments were not ordained for inhumanity..............."

"“Never will the articulate calendar of history forget my annihilation for having exposed the nature of political Islam and for standing up to the monarchic Mullahs..................”

"As I begin my eighth year as a prisoner of dictators, I would like to briefly look back at the theory behind these inexcusable and irrefutable crimes and I will search my mind for the account of all that has happened......................."

Mr. Kazemeini-Boroujerdi’s message on the occasion of the eighth year of the storming of his home and arrest of his supporters

Translated and edited by: Banafsheh zand