Let’s be honest: It was a brutal year for human rights. But we still have victories worth celebrating.
Sarah van Gelder
In 2014, we saw a lot of brutality. Unarmed black men and women were killed by police, women were raped on college campuses and in military barracks, foreign nationals were tortured, and young and mentally ill Americans were confined for extended periods in solitary confinement in U.S. prisons.
In a move cheered by environmental groups, Chevron has put its plans to drill for oil in the Arctic “on hold indefinitely,” the energy company said Wednesday.
It had planned on drilling by 2020 in the Beaufort Sea, but in a letter to Canada’s National Energy Board (NEB), Chevron cited “the level of economic uncertainty in the industry” for its decision, Reuters reports.
Last Sunday, on the second anniversary of the massacre of children and teachers at the Sandy Hook Elementary School — an occasion that seemed to draw only the most muted observance — the former vice president of the United States mounted a vigorous defense of the official use of torture. At the same time, tens of thousands of demonstrators continued marching in the streets of Washington, New York, Chicago, St. Louis, Berkeley and many other cities to protest the police use of fatal force against unarmed black men. Continue reading Searching for Justice and Peace→
JUBA, Dec 15 2014 (IPS) – Rambang “Raymond” Tot Deng was 18 and attending his final year of school when fighting erupted in South Sudan’s capital Juba, one year ago. In the ensuing violence, as Raymond’s schoolbooks burned, thousands of South Sudanese were killed, including two of his cousins.
Many fled to U.N. bases for protection or to neighboring countries. “I saw children killed and women killed and everybody was crying,” Raymond recalls. “Let all youth in the world facing the same thing we are, know that forgiveness is the first priority. Give us the tools, and we will create peace.” — Rambang “Raymond” Tot Deng Continue reading Give Peace a Chance – Run with Youth→
Late Thursday night, the House of Representatives unanimously passed a far-reaching Russia sanctions bill, a hydra-headed incubator of poisonous conflict. The second provocative anti-Russian legislation in a week, it further polarizes our relations with Russia, helping to cement a Russia-China alliance against Western hegemony, and undermines long-term America’s financial and physical security by handing the national treasury over to war profiteers. Continue reading Three Members of Congress Just Reignited the Cold War While No One Was Looking→