Monday, August 31, 2009

Human Rights, The US, Prison Rape..Whats being done?

Rape in prison is cruel and usual Default Thumbnail

August 31, 2009 by Yamini Piplani

Sexual violence against inmates shockingly common

In a world where so many are committed to the protection and preservation of basic human rights, the sexual abuse of both male and female prisoners remains an unfortunate, common practice around the world.

In the U.S., the National Prison Rape Elimination Commission reported in June that there were at least 60,000 rapes nationally in the last year. But this seems like just another statistic, as many already know that rape, often accompanied by violence, has been a part of prison life for decades.

However, considering that the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 had into effect preventative measures as well as punishments that should have helped to tackle the issue of the sexual abuse of prisoners, this number is shockingly high.

It seems like demanding sexual favors for simple things like access to cigarettes, or rape for ego, power, and pleasure is more prevalent than we would like to believe.

In a country like the U.S., where the law and the people openly acknowledge the problem, there is necessity for strict enforcement, as fortunately, the structure to tackle the problem is already in place.

But in countries where the law refuses to recognize prison rape, the society marginalizes rape victims and religion and culture are used as facades to justify the rape of women in prison, this horrible attack on human rights is all too common and there is no end in sight, as there is no public support.

There have been cases of sexual abuse of prisoners in countries around the globe – from the U.S. and Canada to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Pakistan, India and Afghanistan.

Human rights organizations have made progress in changing some things, but unfortunately not even human rights organizations have been able to accurately track these abuses, as many cases go unreported for the fear of marginalization, shame and future threats.

But in countries like Iran, where the issue has finally been brought to light, justice for victims seems to be far away, as the law does not punish such crimes and religion is openly used to justify acts of sexual abuse toward women.

Earlier this month, a reformist cleric in Iran announced that tens of thousands of men and women who were arrested in the election’s aftermath had been raped in prison. Shockingly, the Iranian administration more vehemently denied charges of rape than of torture in general. As if that’s OK.

And, as it almost always happens in pseudo-democracies and non-democracies, the public’s claims of abuse turned into a battle of who can say “I didn’t do it” louder and with more force. Each political group blamed the “enemy” for the sexual abuse.

But Shadi Sadr, a feminist lawyer and journalist, pointed out that such acts of torture have been commonly used against female political prisoners since the 1979 Revolution: “The most systematic type of reported rape has been the rape of virgin girls who were sentenced to death by execution because of political reasons. They were raped on the night before execution.”

It is claimed that if a female prisoner was executed a virgin, she would go to Jannah – paradise. So “in order to lose their virginity, girls were forced to enter into a temporary marriage with men who were in charge of their prison.” What a disgustingly convenient way to gain physical pleasure.

Iran is just one of the hundreds of countries where prisoners are sexually abused. Although there is absolutely no reason acts like this should occur in any country, I am appalled that even the most industrialized countries are on the list, where human rights groups champion their successes.

This either means that this issue has just not been given enough attention or that it is, in fact, an unusually difficult issue to untangle.

Either way, sexual abuse in prisons should be an issue that every government, every non-governmental organization and every human rights group should focus on, as they lead the way to change and progress.

Rape is not, and should not, be a part of anyone’s prison sentence.

source: http://unlvrebelyell.com/2009/08/31/rape-in-prison-is-cruel-and-usual/






I say this: "Its true, no one really likes to talk about it. But it really happens to human beings men and women of all ages and ethnicity right here in the US. The numbers reported in this article are likely not even close to being accurate for obvious reasons. The article suggests that for the last year from August 2008 till June 2009, there were 60,000 rapes reported nationally? Seriously, could that be a realistic number? I'm not so sure. I wont even go into how many actual prisoners there are incarcerated in the United States and for how long etc. etc. You see where I am going with this right? Anyways, there is a law on the books passed in 2003 and I reiterate called the Prison Rape Elimination Act. Basically, its not rocket science to realize that this is an epidemic of horrendous proportions! Who is doing anything about it? The Human Rights Watch Dogs are "on it". But there power is limited. States are sovereign in there "own" state affairs to a very certain degree. Its a federal vs. state issue type of thing. Kind of like sharing powers under the term called federalism. Does that add up?

Those decisions regarding "state" prisons are usually left up to state governors in the United States. That's really where the buck has to start in some manner of speaking. However, these prison wardens have got to get on board or the 2003 legislation is never going to be implemented! This legislation is already 6 years old! Is everyone asleep?
There is a small light at the end of this tunnel. This post links to a site entitled the National Prison Rape Elimination Commission. You have got to go there and read what it has to say. The reason? If your interested in human rights of prisoners, this site has been recently updated in August of 2009 with facts concerning the commissions findings and what the US Congress might plan to do about this "swine flu" like epidemic called prison rape. I hope you know that I really do believe that Global Human Rights Are For Everyone."

William

Sunday, August 30, 2009

India, Sundays Featured Country, Lets Blog

As you know I have been paying quite a bit of "attention" to the great India this month so I thought I might as well conclude with a bit more relevant human rights information. I do not want to leave you hanging uninformed. I am going to re-add the five links to remind you of the previous posts and then proceed with my topic for this one: 1. http://wwwhumanwrites.blogspot.com/2009/08/indiaarrest-of-11-year-old-girl-latest.html 2. http://wwwhumanwrites.blogspot.com/2009/08/cape-argus-india-police-in-human-rights.html 3. http://wwwhumanwrites.blogspot.com/2009/08/subir-bhowmik-column-north-east-india.html 4. http://wwwhumanwrites.blogspot.com/2009/08/global-voices-online-india-violation-of.html 5. http://wwwhumanwrites.blogspot.com/2009/08/solomonia-human-rights-watch-board.html OK, so as you can see, like I said, India seemed to be coming up quite a bit in human rights discussion this month and its not going to get any better with this post. I am simply going to give you some information I feel is relevant. Anyways we had been talking quite a bit about police brutality. Amnesty International had mentioned a law on the books that had given the Indian police authority to deal with "militia" which also seems to include civilians, in such harsh manners, because of this law. However, these are just the "tip" of the iceberg to state mildly what I found out after further researching the human rights abuses, that have been alleged to be occurring in India. Before I go there, I want to share with you what this country of over 1 billion people does to survive economically and who they do business with. The reason for this is because this can have implications as to how the rest of the world views the way in which they best "deal" with human rights abuses there. I know it sounds like, what is he trying to say? Just take it like I have stated it. India's main sources of exports are petroleum products, textile goods, gems, jewelry, engineering goods, chemicals, and leather manufacturers. In turn there main source of imports are crude oil, machinery, gems, fertilizer, and chemicals. The countries they do business with by percentage are Exports: US 15%, China 8.7%, UAE 8.7%, UK4.4% (2007) Imports: China 10.6%, US 7.8%, Germany 4.4%, Singapore 4.4%. So you are scratching your head and saying so how is this relevant to human rights abuse? What does this all mean? India is doing business, BIG business with the US, China, and The United Arab Emirates. These are major "world players" from a global political and economic perspective. So, what, if anything, is being done about these Indian human rights issues? Furthermore, China's human rights record is horrendous as most people already know correct? We have not even discussed the UAE as of yet. But, your about to find out that India's human rights record is not so good either. According to the CIA World Fact-book:
current situation: India is a source, destination, and transit country for men, women, and children trafficked for the purposes of forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation; internal forced labor may constitute India's largest trafficking problem; men, women, and children are held in debt bondage and face forced labor working in brick kilns, rice mills, agriculture, and embroidery factories; women and girls are trafficked within the country for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation and forced marriage; children are subjected to forced labor as factory workers, domestic servants, beggars, and agriculture workers, and have been used as armed combatants by some terrorist and insurgent groups; India is also a destination for women and girls from Nepal and Bangladesh trafficked for the purpose of commercial sexual exploitation; Indian women are trafficked to the Middle East for commercial sexual exploitation; men and women from Bangladesh and Nepal are trafficked through India for forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation in the Middle East. Of course the Middle East is implicated right? Interesting..Where???
https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/in.html Accessed 30 Aug 2009 This, is not a pretty picture. If you glance over to your right and scroll down a bit, you will see a new post regarding the National Human Rights Commission for India. Scroll through the pages. You will be amazed at how much information you will find about the human rights abuse(s) that occur in the vast land and second largest populated country in the world. Remember; Global Human Rights Are For Everyone Get It? William

Friday, August 28, 2009

Cameroon Revisted, French De-Colonization Or..Something Else?



Thu, Aug 27, 2009 at 3:37 AM
INTERESTED IN WORKING IN CLOSE

COLLABORATION WITH YOU



KONGNYUY EMMANUEL JUMBAM has sent
you a message on Peace and Collaborative
Development Network

"Its nice reading from you again, so far, I have covered all of what is going on in the north west region of Cameroon in terms of human rights abuses and conflicts at stake which are are leading CAMEROON in a short to a secession on the part of southern Cameroonians who are asking for their total independence from the FRENCH BROTHERS who have turned to colonize them, subjugate, and not respecting the clauses of their unity in 1961 as a federal state to a unity state and now the republic of Cameroon . THIS CHANGES TOOK PLACE WITHOUT THE CONSENT OF SOUTHERN CAMEROONIANS, and they are really suffering. Also, there is a fear of an occurrence of a civil war in Cameroon.This is because of the corrupt nature of the government officials in all sectors of public service,french domination of the economy of our country, and political issues.
Do well to let me know how things are moving with my cause for combating these ills."

OK so where do we begin to start with this recent email I have posted from my friend over in Cameroon? Maybe we should back up a bit and take a look at political history in Cameroon? Lets begin with some "official" info from the CIA fact book readily available to us online for a quick overview..
.
conventional long form: Republic of Cameroon
conventional short form: Cameroon
local long form: Republique du Cameroun/Republic of Cameroon
local short form: Cameroun/Cameroon
former: French Cameroon, British Cameroon,
Federal Republic of Cameroon, United Republic of Cameroon

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
republic; multiparty presidential regime

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
name: Yaounde
geographic coordinates: 3 52 N, 11 31 E
time difference: UTC+1
(6 hours ahead of Washington,
DC during Standard Time)

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
10 provinces; Adamaoua, Centre,
Est, Extreme-Nord,
Littoral, Nord, Nord-Ouest, Ouest, Sud, Sud-Ouest

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
1 January 1960
(from French-administered
UN trusteeship)

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Republic Day (National Day),
20 May (1972)

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
approved by referendum
20 May 1972;
adopted 2 June 1972;
revised January 1996

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
based on French civil law system,
with common law influence;
accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
20 years of age; universal

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
chief of state: President Paul BIYA
(since 6 November 1982)
head of government:
Prime Minister Philemon YANG
(since 30 June 2009)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the
president from proposals submitted
by the prime minister
elections:
president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term
(eligible for a second term);
election last held 11 October 2004
(next to be held by October 2011);
prime minister appointed by the president
election results: President Paul BIYA
reelected; percent of vote - Paul BIYA 70.9%,
John FRU NDI 17.4%,
Adamou Ndam NJOYA 4.5%,
Garga Haman ADJI 3.7%

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
unicameral National Assembly
or Assemblee Nationale
(180 seats; members are elected
by direct popular vote to serve
five-year terms)
; note - the president can either
lengthen or
shorten the term of the
legislature
elections: last held 22 July 2007
(next to be held in 2012)
election results:
percent of vote by party -
NA; seats by party -
CPDM 140,
SDF 14,
UDC 4,
UNDP 4,
MP 1,
vacant 17
note: the constitution calls for an upper
chamber for the legislature, to be called
a Senate, but it has yet to be established

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Supreme Court
(judges are appointed by the president);
High Court of Justice
(consists of nine judges
and six substitute judges;
elected by the National Assembly)

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Cameroonian Democratic Union
or UDC [Adamou Ndam NJOYA];
Cameroon People's Democratic
Movement
or CPDM [Paul BIYA];
Movement for the Defense of the
Republic or MDR
[Dakole DAISSALA];
Movement for the Liberation and
Development of Cameroon or MLDC
[Marcel YONDO];
National Union for Democracy and
Progress or UNDP
[Maigari BELLO BOUBA];
Progressive Movement or MP;
Social Democratic Front or SDF
[John FRU NDI];
Union of Peoples of Cameroon or UPC
[Augustin Frederic KODOCK]

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Human Rights Defense Group
[Albert MUKONG, president];
Southern Cameroon National Council
[Ayamba Ette OTUN]

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
ACCT, ACP, AfDB, AU, BDEAC, C,
CEMAC,
FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO,
ICC,
ICCt (signatory), ICRM, IDA, IDB,
IFAD,
IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO,
Interpol,
IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO (correspondent),
ITSO,
ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM, OIC, OIF,
OPCW, PCA,
UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO,
UNWTO, UPU,
WCL, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO,
WMO, WTO

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
chief of mission:
Ambassador Joseph FOE-ATANGANA
chancery:
2349 Massachusetts Avenue NW,
Washington, DC 20008
telephone:
[1] (202) 265-8790
FAX:
[1] (202) 387-3826

Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
chief of mission:
Ambassador Janet E. GARVEY
embassy:
Avenue Rosa Parks, Yaounde
mailing address:
P. O. Box 817, Yaounde; pouch:
American Embassy,
US Department of State,
Washington, DC 20521-2520
telephone: [237] 2220 15 00;
Consular: [237] 2220 16 03
FAX: [237] 2220 16 00 Ext. 4531;
Consular FAX: [237] 2220 17 52
https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/
the-world-factbook/geos/cm.html

OK, so we are linked to some excellent
"facts" from the CIA fact book published
online from the great and precise US
intelligence agency. But, things still
do not add up. This article links to another
site which talks about the true and precise
Independence day for Cameroon which is
celebrated in May 20th 1972. But, The CIA
fact-book indicates that they had UN
trusteeship in January 1960. What that
means is they were still not really
independent because they did not
have a ratified constitution until May
1972. OK, now that we have that much
straight.
Why are the Cameroons still unhappy
with the French?

OK, I think I dug up some more answers
from our friends at the US State
Department:

"In 1955, the outlawed Union of the

Peoples of Cameroon (UPC), based

largely among the Bamileke and

Bassa ethnic groups, began an

armed struggle for independence

in French Cameroon. This rebellion

continued, with diminishing intensity,

even after independence. Estimates of

death from this conflict vary from tens

of thousands to hundreds of thousands.

French Cameroon achieved independence

in 1960 as the Republic of Cameroon.

The following year the largely Muslim

northern two-thirds of British Cameroon

voted to join Nigeria; the largely Christian

southern third voted to join with the

Republic of Cameroon to form the

Federal Republic of Cameroon.

The formerly French and British

regions each maintained substantial

autonomy. Ahmadou Ahidjo,

a French-educated Fulani, was

chosen President of the federation

in 1961. Ahidjo, relying on a

pervasive internal security

apparatus, outlawed all political

parties but his own in 1966. He

successfully suppressed the UPC

rebellion, capturing the last important

rebel leader in 1970. In 1972, a new

constitution replaced the federation

with a unitary state."

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/26431.htm

Accessed 28 Aug 2009

So there has been tremendous underlying

tensions for a long long time that apparently

have never subsided in Cameroon.

The tribal and party conflict(s)

with the French and the "new"

government remain even with

this powerful republic government

" in place". Which the President was

elected by landslide. The real question

to me is; the "new Prime Minister" and

where he fits in to the equation. He was

appointed as recently as June 2009.

There are a lot of political undertones

that even a chess master would be using

crayons to do a coloring book trying to

figure out the "next move".

We will have to wait and see how the

situation develops further in the

"Republic of Cameroon".


William







Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Iran leaders OK funds to probe U.S. abuse - UPI.com

Iran leaders OK funds to probe U.S. abuse - UPI.com

allAfrica.com: Nigeria: Police Are Perpetrators of Human Right Violations - Cord Henrick Moeller (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Nigeria: Police Are Perpetrators of Human Right Violations - Cord Henrick Moeller (Page 1 of 1)

One Month Anniversary of my Blog, Paying Tribute

Every now and then I feel it becomes important to take a step back and "pay tribute" to those that have mentored or inspired you in some way or another. In my case from an academic standpoint I could not have been any luckier. I am not going to write a biography or anything like that, but I am going to link this article to a site where you can find all about my own personal mentor where I attended both undergraduate and graduate school at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida, USA from 2000-2004. I started college after a long stint in the United States Air Force. I had attained my Associate degree in upstate NY after leaving service(10 yrs) and transferred to Florida.
Anyways, although no longer there, this professor is on to "bigger and batter fish to fry" so to speak. He, at the time, was always willing to take on more students then it seemed like he had time for. He is fluent that I know of in at least three languages; English, Arabic, and French. His specialization was/is the middle-east studies, international terrorism, and of course human rights. He taught me to be an analytical thinker, unbiased and an unprejudiced thinker. I became an overall moderate and gained an enhanced political science perspective from him. Just briefly his Bio includes a law degree from Lebanon, and a PhD from the University of Miami.

He has been an MSNBC and Fox news analyst and now writes articles for numerous online newspaper publications. Additionally, he is a counter-terrorism expert and is sought after by both the US Congress, the United Nations Security Counsel, and the European Union for his knowledge and expertise. There are numerous other organizations that he does consulting for as well. He has of course authored some very well received books regarding terrorism and Jihad . There is not to much he does not know about this subject. The title of this article will take you to one of my favorite links and that is where you can find out so much more about this world renowned expert on the middle east civilization and how they directly effect our lives here in the west from a strongly factual and academic perspective. By the way his name is Dr. Walid Phares. I hope you enjoy his work as much as I did his mentor-ship.

Best Regards

William

Comment me if you have any questions you can also sign up for newsletters etc via the link......:)

I month anniversary of my blog


No immunity in any CIA abuse cases-UN rights chief | Reuters

No immunity in any CIA abuse cases-UN rights chief | Reuters

Friday, August 14, 2009

allAfrica.com: Nigeria: Reps Raise Alarm Over Ten Citizens Executed in Libya (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Nigeria: Reps Raise Alarm Over Ten Citizens Executed in Libya (Page 1 of 1)

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allAfrica.com: Sudan: Tensions High, Food Short in Akobo (Page 1 of 1)

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The Geneva conventions at 60: Unleashing the laws of war | The Economist

The Geneva conventions at 60: Unleashing the laws of war | The Economist

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Immigration: When home is prison | The Economist

Immigration: When home is prison | The Economist

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California's overcrowded prisons: Gulags in the sun | The Economist

California's overcrowded prisons: Gulags in the sun | The Economist

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Ethiopia's resilient prime minister: The two sides of Meles Zenawi | The Economist

Ethiopia's resilient prime minister: The two sides of Meles Zenawi | The Economist

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Saturday, August 8, 2009

Consider the source, Norway. | Babalú Blog: an island on the net without a bearded dictator

Consider the source, Norway. | Babalú Blog: an island on the net without a bearded dictator

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PCHR Weekly Report: 4 civilians wounded, 25 abducted by Israeli forces this week - International Middle East Media Center

PCHR Weekly Report: 4 civilians wounded, 25 abducted by Israeli forces this week - International Middle East Media Center

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Indonesian tribe files lawsuit against mining company Freeport, claiming rights abuses

Indonesian tribe files lawsuit against mining company Freeport, claiming rights abuses

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SUBIR BHOWMIK's COLUMN :: North East India's Horrible Human Rights Record

SUBIR BHOWMIK's COLUMN :: North East India's Horrible Human Rights Record

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Global Voices Online » India: Violation Of Human Rights

Global Voices Online » India: Violation Of Human Rights

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Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Recent Hunger Strikes Highlight Need to Improve Detention Centers - NAM

Recent Hunger Strikes Highlight Need to Improve Detention Centers - NAM

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Foreign prisoners: Doing time abroad | The Economist

Foreign prisoners: Doing time abroad | The Economist

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JAMA -- Mission to Chad Pinpoints Sexual Violence, August 5, 2009, Voelker 302 (5): 477

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JAMA -- AAAS: Use Science to Boost Human Rights, August 5, 2009, Kuehn 302 (5): 480

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allAfrica.com: Sudan: UN Extends Aid to Victims of Deadly New Violence in South (Page 1 of 1)

allAfrica.com: Sudan: UN Extends Aid to Victims of Deadly New Violence in South (Page 1 of 1)

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Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Nuclear News: leading Democratic Republic of Congo human rights defender arrested over uranium mine report

Nuclear News: leading Democratic Republic of Congo human rights defender arrested over uranium mine report

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A Tale of Two Taliban | Human Rights Now - Amnesty International USA Blog

A Tale of Two Taliban | Human Rights Now - Amnesty International USA Blog

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allAfrica.com: Sudan: More Than 150 Die in Ethnic Violence in South (Page 1 of 1)

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allAfrica.com: Congo-Kinshasa: Scale of Cruelty Dealt to Women Disturbs UN Refugee Ambassador (Page 1 of 1)

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BBC NEWS | Asia-Pacific | Protest at Malaysia security law

BBC NEWS | Asia-Pacific | Protest at Malaysia security law

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