Category: human rights

Human rights groups are calling on Google to c…

Human rights groups are calling on Google to cancel its plan to launch a censored version of its search engine in China, which they said would violate the freedom of expression and privacy rights of millions of internet users.

Illustration: Soohee Cho/The Intercept

YouTube and Facebook are removing evidence of atrocities,…

YouTube and Facebook are removing evidence of atrocities, jeopardizing cases against war criminals.

Philippines Threatens Martial Law as Teen’s Killing Shakes Bloody Drug War

Philippines Threatens Martial Law as Teen’s Killing Shakes Bloody Drug War:

Update from the Philippines.

Trump Praises Erdogan, Whose Bodyguards Then Assault Protesters in Washington

Trump Praises Erdogan, Whose Bodyguards Then Assault Protesters in Washington:

Remember this headline from a few months ago?

Trump may be the world’s most powerful authoritarian, but he’s hardly the only one. Take Turkey’s Recep Erdogan. Under his rule, over 47,000 people have been jailed on terrorism charges. Many journalists and some politicians have been jailed. The government has been restructured to the point where calling it a democracy is questionable. Social media including Facebook, Youtube and Twitter are repeatedly blocked.

Trump. Erdogan. Putin. Duterte. They all want one thing: power. And gold-plated toilets, probably. But it is within our collective power to stop them.

Learn about these men and what they’ve done in their countries. Their actions provide insight into Donald Trump’s impulses. The issues of America right now are in many cases at more advanced stages in other countries.  Erosion of fair elections? Check. Militarization of an unaccountable police force? Check. Aggression against a free press? Check. Restriction of civil liberties? Mass surveillance? Executive power grabs? Encouraging street thugs to beat up those who disagree? Check check check.

The fight against fascism in the US is not happening in isolation. It is of a piece with struggles against authoritarianism around the world.

Think globally, act locally.

Trump Is Letting Local Cops Have Grenade Launchers Again

Trump Is Letting Local Cops Have Grenade Launchers Again:

The police are already over-militarized. Trump is making it worse.

How White Supremacists Prepared for Charlottesville

How White Supremacists Prepared for Charlottesville:

Here’s ProPublica with a short analysis of recently leaked white supremacist Discord chats. These originally came from Unicorn Riot in a serious reporting scoop.

Taken collectively these provide insight on the mindset and tactics of major white supremacist groups in the months before Charlottesville. So what can we learn? (Points below are paraphrased from article:)

1. They were prepared to do violence, no surprise there

2. The rally involved an intense amount of planning. At least some participants were very tech-savvy. This fits with the levels of coordination, communication and logistics on display in Charlottesville.

3. Not only have they been closely tracking opponents using open-source intelligence and in-person surveillance, they even sent much of their compiled information to police.

( At minimum this raises serious questions about the relationship between police and white supremacist groups in Virginia and helps explain why they stood back and allowed attacks and gunshots to go unanswered. Recent reporting also shows that they ignored requests from the UVA student body for safety information, rebuffed offers for additional police from other universities, and focused on antifa as a threat to the exclusion of alt-right and white supremacist groups. No doubt all this suited “Unite the Right” perfectly.

Given that information on activists gathered by police departments also makes its way into federal intelligence databases like DHS, it further raises the question: could leftists who haven’t committed a crime be surveilled by federal intelligence agencies due to information obtained indirectly from Nazis?” It doesn’t seem out of the range of possibility at this point. – eds.)

4. Some members displayed a sophisticated knowledge of security culture and leftist tactics. So you should too. They went to some lengths to keep their plans from being uncovered, and did what they could to conduct surveillance on potential counter-protestors. High standards for digital and personal security are going to be important.

The full article is required reading for anyone who opposes fascism and white supremacy in the US. Now that Discord has shut down alt-right accounts, this is the closest we’re going to get to a definitive peek into the current tactics of white supremacists for a while.

Who is Ramzan Kadyrov?

Who is Ramzan Kadyrov?:

The leader of Chechnya threatens journalists, human rights defenders, and politicians. Sometimes those he threatens turn up dead.

He is also behind the recent anti-gay purge in Chechnya, in which hundreds of people have been tortured, starved, and beaten. When they returned home, the Chechen government encouraged their families to kill them.

He is an enemy of human rights and a reminder of why security culture is so important for activists. In some countries, it prevents surveillance by isolated hate groups. In others, it could save your life when the State wants you dead.

There already signs of fracture in the white nationalist forums over Charlottesville.

It’s manifesting in arguments over whether to attend the rallies this weekend and lack of direction re: what to do next.

This is good.

Don’t count them out yet, but it looks like the opposition of the last week (direct action, arrests, deplatforming by tech companies, “Yes You’re Racist”)  has had an effect.

The question now is: will they stay home? or show up crazier?

Stay safe.

Troops in Cameroon tortured and killed prisoners at a military…

Troops in Cameroon tortured and killed prisoners at a military base that is used by U.S. personnel for drone surveillance.

Flimsy evidence and fringe sources landed people on a secretive…

Flimsy evidence and fringe sources landed people on a secretive banking watchlist. The World-Check database included a 9-month-old baby, along with groups like Human Rights Watch and Greenpeace.