Multi-signatoried letter to UK Guardian Saturday 26 September 2015: We are gravely concerned at the possibility of a parliamentary decision to bomb Syria. David Cameron is planning such a vote in the #005689">House of Commons in the near future. He is doing so in the face of much evidence that such an action would exacerbate the situation it is supposed to solve. Already we have seen the killing of civilians and the exacerbation of a refugee crisis which is largely the product of wars in Syria, Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan.
The US and its allies have dropped 20,000 bombs on Iraq and #005689">Syria in the past year, with little effect. We fear that this latest extension of war will only worsen the threat of terrorism, as have the previous wars involving the British government. Cameron is cynically using the refugee crisis to urge more war. He should not be allowed to.
Mairead Maguire Nobel peace laureate
Len McCluskey General secretary, Unite the Union
Christine Shawcroft Labour NEC
Diane Abbott MP
Caroline Lucas MP
Andrew Murray Chair, Stop the War Campaign
Lindsey German Convenor, STWC
Andy de la Tour
Gerry Grehan Peace People Belfast
We renew our call made five months ago for the governments of the US and UK to cease turning a blind eye to war crimes and to the destruction of Yemen by aerial bombardment and blockade of food and fuel. Behind a virtual silence in the western media, the US and the UK have inexplicably acquiesced in the ruination of #005689">Yemen. We renew our call for a sharp change in policy: to work for an immediate ceasefire, to respect Yemeni sovereignty, and to foster political negotiations between the Yemeni parties in the neutral state of Oman, or elsewhere. We reject our countries’ unconscionable support for this war and urge a diplomatic solution.
Robert Burrowes University of Washington
Louise Cainkar Marquette University
Steve Caton Harvard University
Sheila Carapico University of Richmond
Rochelle Davis Georgetown University
Paul Dresch University of Oxford
Najam Haidar Barnard College
Anne Meneley Trent University (Canada)
Brinkley Messick Columbia University
Flagg Miller University of California, Davis
Martha Mundy London School of Economics
Jillian Schwedler Hunter College, CUNY Graduate Center
Lucine Taminian American Academic Research Institute in Iraq
Gabriele vom Bruck Soas, University of London
Janet Watson University of Leeds
Lisa Wedeen University of Chicago
Shelagh Weir London
John Willis University of Colorado
Stacey Philbrick Yadav Hobart and William Smith Colleges
Sami Zubaida Birkbeck College, London
anonymous (not verified)
Sun, 2015-09-27 11:58
The 'news' is not always the truth
Eddy (not verified)
Tue, 2015-10-06 20:02
Should anyone be denied the right to seek a better life?
Subject was : The 'news' is not always the truth. That title matches the previous title, so could have been typed in error. - Ed
The article states that the family were safe in Turkey, but does not say how they were living, whether he was gainfully employed and was treated equally as any Turkish citizen.
From video clips and interviews I have witnessed, I have seen first hand, whilst it may be claimed they are safe, they are in no way leading a normal life in such a foreign country, and in most cases, discriminated against most heavily.
What person would not choose to leave such a life and look for a better deal elsewhere?
I challenge the author of this article, to walk a mile, in another's shoes, before again printing such a biased self serving article.
anonymous (not verified)
Tue, 2015-10-06 21:05
Refugees flee to be safe
Tue, 2015-10-06 23:14
Refugees now flee for a better life
Wed, 2015-10-07 01:03
Eddy, Dennis K and Refugee question
Here's my two cents.
The term 'refugee' has a strict legal definition at international law and a much wider meaning outside the law.
In international law (Geneva Convention) it means a person fleeing specific forms of persecution who has made it to one country and is applying to go to the closest next country.
Outside the law it means a person is fleeing risk of death to one country seeking safety in another safer country. In this larger meaning, the person fleeing might not be specifically targeted in his own country; he might simply be one of millions suffering in a war. An entire population might be considered 'refugee' under this meaning. The notion here is, however, still political and at risk of violence, possibly death. But it's not the 'legal' definition.
A person who is not in immediate fear of their life but whose potential for healthy survival is affected because s/he cannot make a living in a country whose economy has been destroyed or greatly damaged by war does not fit the 'legal' category of refugee. They are an economic migrant.
In reality most people are not going to leave their home if it still provides them with decent opportunities to make a living, for it is extremely difficult to survive in a new country unless you have family there and money, skills and influence. Extreme poverty will cause people to migrate for survival.
Overpopulation, wars and colonialisation can all reduce certain sectors or large swathes of populations to extreme poverty. This is what we are looking at in the Middle East at the moment.
The overpopulation is the result of the destruction of long-held intertribal territories and traditions which kept populations in check through kinship rules that limited fertility opportunities both exogamously and endogamously. 
Characteristic of wars and industrial 'development' are new land-laws, new definitions of ownership, privatisation of property, border redefinitions, and mass movement of populations, with rural to urban drift. Displaced clan and tribe members must seek waged work in urban centers where kinship rules are almost irrelevant, marriage opportunities are many and niche opportunities for child labour provide the only opportunities to increase family income.
Wars, colonialism and development are all part of the same displacement and economic destruction syndrome. We see the same thing in the 'developed' countries, like Australia, Britain and the United States, where power elites have kept those populations in constant disorganisation with forced accommodation of huge quantities of mass migration.
It has been much harder to disorganise continental Europe, due to its Roman legal codes (based on the Napoleonic code) which guarantee its citizens (and legal immigrants) certain rights at law. The right to housing and economic survival guaranteed by the state made mass immigration policies impossible to implement. It took this huge recent engineered crisis to provoke a situation where it became possible, momentarily, for a corrupt press to manufacture the appearance of consent to mass migration of refugees and economic immigrants in Europe. That was this recent 'Syrian refugee movement' that Angela Merkel has abused that has ripped open Germany's and Europe's borders, with downstream consequences that no-one can predict. She should be held to account for this at law.
To get those immigrants to leave en-masse required bombing and terrorising Syria for years and the neighborhood for decades. It required the financing of gangs of professional terrorists by foreign powers, notably the US and NATO pouring arms into the region, with Saudi Arabia, Israel, Qatar and Turkey delivering them. Finally the creation of the demonic ISIS seemed to do the trick, with Turkey then organising the bus-loads of immigrants to the coast and the rafts into the Aegean Sea while the Turkish police turned a blind eye. All probably organised in cooperation with the United States, Britain and some European powers - all allies of Australia.
The only people to blame in this situation are the leaders of the powers that tried to remove or succeeded in removing governments and thus destabilising entire countries. They have engineered false flag attacks, 'color' revolutions, and terrorism. They have misrepresented what was happening to the world, through corrupt media (which should also stand trial) and dumbed-down education institutions. These agents would take us past the brink of World War. As Russian President Putin said recently at the UN: "Do you even know what you have done?"
No country should be destabilised by war or by mass immigration or emigration.
Refugees and stateless persons can best be stemmed by the world somehow prosecuting world leaders who intervene in the affairs of relatively peaceful states in efforts to cause 'regime' change. We have a huge line-up of war criminals today, many of them very very rich, in the US-NATO bloc. Somehow they need to be tried and imprisoned. Then their wealth - much of it from aggressive development and the arms trade - needs to go to restore the environments and economies of the countries whose people were made refugees and economic migrants. As far as that is possible. And to provide temporary asylum and accomodation for those who have been forced to leave their own countries by the consequences of foreign interference.
It should be noted that the United States has attempted to put itself outside normal international criminal proceedings.  How do we deal with this problem - beyond writing about it? Do we appeal to Americans to find ways to hold their leaders to account in domestic law?
 It is a popular misconception that 'all' non-industrial peoples had huge numbers of children, who mostly died in infancy and that adults had short life-expectancy. Thus the theory that human populations grew due to modern medicine causing more children to survive and longer adult life-expectancy. This theory can be attacked on so many levels that I cannot be bothered to start, except to say that classically overpopulated 'third world' countries lack the 'modern medicine' that is supposed to have prevented the high infant mortality and huge families which characterise them. Further that places like India and Africa had rich intact biodiverse environments that could not possibly have survived centuries of human overpopulation such as has characterised the last couple of centuries. I have written a book on this: http://www.lulu.com/shop/sheila-newman/demography-territory-law-rules-of-animal-human-populations/paperback/product-21735874.html#
 The United States government has consistently opposed an international court that could hold US military and political leaders to a uniform global standard of justice. The Clinton administration participated actively in negotiations towards the International Criminal Court treaty, seeking Security Council screening of cases. If adopted, this would have enabled the US to veto any dockets it opposed. When other countries refused to agree to such an unequal standard of justice, the US campaigned to weaken and undermine the court. The Bush administration, coming into office in 2001 as the Court neared implementation, adopted an extremely active opposition. Washington began to negotiate bilateral agreements with other countries, insuring immunity of US nationals from prosecution by the Court. As leverage, Washington threatened termination of economic aid, withdrawal of military assistance, and other painful measures. The Obama administration has so far made greater efforts to engage with the Court. It is participating with the Court's governing bodies and it is providing support for the Court's ongoing prosecutions. Washington, however, has no intention to join the ICC, due to its concern about possible charges against US nationals. Source: https://www.globalpolicy.org/us-un-and-international-law-8-24/us-opposition-to-the-icc-8-29.html
Jane S. (not verified)
Wed, 2015-10-07 13:05
Why do Americans believe anything in the mass media?
Wed, 2015-10-07 20:57
The refugee crisis does appear manufactured
End the EU (not verified)
Thu, 2015-10-08 12:40
The UN are part of the problem
The UN are part of the problem. Instead of peace keeping, and negotiations to protect peoples being involved in wars and conflicts, they see their one way solution as evacuating people, and spreading them out across Europe and the West.
The UN is launching "The 2030 Agenda," hailed as the "new universal agenda" for humanity. The New World Order is not a conspiracy theory, it is very real, an agenda that has been acknowledged openly for decades, yet still people wave it away as if it is a "fringe" belief.
The United Nations is now in the process of defining Sustainable Development Goals as part a new sustainable development agenda that must finish the job and leave no one behind. This agenda, to be launched at the Sustainable Development Summit in September 2015, is currently being discussed at the UN General Assembly, where Member States and civil society are making contributions to the agenda.
For example, one of the goals of the sustainable development crowd is to push the human population into giant “megacities” and to allow nature to recapture much of what has already been settled by humanity.
Towards a sustainable development agenda | United Nations
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the 70 winners of the United Nations-sponsored Many Languages, One World contest who wrote “inspired” essays in languages not their own about a new sustainable development path that will lead to an end to poverty and a life of dignity for all.
"Sustainable development" is itself an oxymoron. Not all countries can live like those in the first world as there aren't enough resources. It's an illusion. The population of Africa is said to double by mid century, so if the migrant crisis continues, there will be a homogenized mass of humanity, with poverty and overpopulation spread world-wide.
After World War 2, the global population was 2.6 billion. Now, the overflow is due to 7.3 billion and rising by 80,000 each year! The UN think their "sustainable" goals can be reached, without addressing overpopulation? The UN Refugee Convention was formulated at a different time, and it outdated.
J. Stillwater (not verified)
Sun, 2015-09-27 14:11
Film "We are many" on Iraq and Syria opens world-wide, May 2016
Amazing film. Truly amazing. Not only did it make the point that the "War" on Iraq was a trumped up crime based on lies and was also illegal, but the last 20 minutes of the film also made the amazingly good point that the "War" on Syria is trumped up, based on lies and illegal too. Bravo! The film will open world-wide in May 2016. See trailer of We Are Many
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