This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Bringing Bashar al Assad to Account

"Through pictures, through scenes, we hope to bring to the attention of parliamentarians and Canadians the true suffering of human beings that are caught in the middle of this maelstrom that we are fiddling with, instead of trying to reconcile."
"When a society uses children as cannon fodder for a desperate cause like that, it is a disgrace to humanity and we are part of letting that disgrace perpetuate itself."
Romeo Dallaire, former general, senator, UN-appointed peacekeeper in Rwanda

"Our hope in [showing the degree of human suffering taking place in Syria] doing so is to try to do for the Syrian people what was not done for the Jews during the Second World War, which is to shed a light on their suffering and urge that others take action to prevent and protect these communities from the crimes that are happening."
Naomi Kikoler, deputy director, Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide, Washington
A military police photographer smuggled copies of the photos out of a hospital on memory sticks hidden in his shoe
Caesar was officially part of a team of forensic photographers working for Assad behind closed doors. But driven to act by the grotesque things he had witnessed, Caesar transferred the pictures of mutilated dead bodies from police computers on to USB sticks between 2011 and 2013. The images were put on display at the U.N. headquarters in New York (pictured)

Former Canadian general Romeo Dallaire has dedicated himself to humanitarian efforts on behalf of warning the world against permitting children to be used as soldiers in theatres of war. During the Rwandan genocide, as UN-appointed commander of the United Nations peace corps in Rwanda he was witness to the wholesale bloodlust that led to the deaths of 800,000 Tutsis in Rwanda, and moderate Hutus, by the ruling Hutu government.

In the buildup of hostilities aimed at the Tutsis in 1994, then-General Dallaire's repeated requests to the United Nations as head of the UN in Rwanda Peackeeping Force for additional troops and weapons that could be used in defence of the Tussi population were ignored. In the end, he found himself helpless, a man dispatched to a tense and violent situation, left by circumstances beyond his control, no option but to remain there, emasculated, witness to slaughter.

He is now part of a delegation in possession of part of the 55,000 forensic photographs that had been spirited out of Syria, depicting atrocities committed by the regime of Syrian President Bashar al Assad against his civilian Sunni population in Syrian prisons. Alongside Mr. Dallaire is Anthony Lake, executive director of the United Nations Children's Fund, speaking from New York of his own first-hand views of Syrians caught up as targets of their own government.

"Who the hell would shoot children through the window of a school?", he informed his listeners as a thought that had come to him in the situation he witnessed of children forced to study underground in avoidance of snipers, eventually moving up to a ground floor in their school, where they were then vulnerable to being shot. Romeo Dallaire, now senior fellow at the Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies spoke in Parliament of witnessing recruitment of child soldiers in refugee camps in Jordan, to fight in the Syrian conflict.

The photographs that had been smuggled out of Syria by a former participant in the Syrian regime working in its prison system and party to the incarceration and torture methods, having finally seen too many mutilated dead bodies, fled from Syria with the evidence he had amassed of regime atrocities against helpless people. The photographs were used as evidence of the degree of human suffering taking place in Syria to persuade governments to commit to real action.
I am Caesar. I used to work for the Syrian regime, as a photographer with the military police in Damascus. I am going to tell you about my work before the uprising and during its first two years, but I can’t reveal everything because I am afraid the regime might recognise me through the details. I am a refugee in Europe. I’m afraid they will find me and eliminate me, or take revenge on my family.
The executive director of the Syrian Emergency Task Force, Mouaz Moustafa, called on the Government of Canada to push for "creative solutions" to end the torture and bombardment by air of Syrian civilians. "I truly believe this is the 'never again' moment of our lifetime", he stated. But again, the puzzling conundrum is why it is that regional neighbours of Syria, all of whom with the exception of Lebanon and Iran, deplore the regime's bloodbath it commits against its Sunni population have not, within the auspices of the Arab League unified a force to enter Syria and hold its government to account.


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