Sunday, August 31, 2008

blogging Gustav

The best blog I found so far that covers the "mother of all storms". Add yours below, if you have a good blog suggestion

sarah palin baby scandal



Her last child seems to have been the child of her 16 year old daughter?

Vid New Orleans pre Gustav


pre-gustav from paul danos on Vimeo.

Information for mobile phone updates

Mobilité Dialogue Participation

I hope this forum will address the value of migrants in democratic development. But probably it will again be a very abstract discussion that talks about everything except political rights of citizens that are exercising their right of FREE MOVEMENT.

Free Movement is an objective of the European treaty and is thus part of the identity of the European citizen.

Caught looting New Orleans, straight to Angola!

twitpic, this is good

Obstructing fundamental right of free movement

All of Denmark’s requirements for family reunions are voided according to several European Court of Justice (Luxembourg) rulings.
* Spouse or children, who wants to be united, should previously have had permanent stay in another EU country. This requirement is voided after the ECJ ruling in the Metock case.
* The Danish citizen should previously have had work or be self-employed during the stay in another EU country. This requirement is now limited to a few weeks of work [In some interpretations being actively job-seeking for a couple of weeks is sufficient. — ed.]
* The Danish citizen should be self-sufficient, when returning to Denmark. This requirement was voided by the ECJ Eind ruling in December 2007.
* The EU rules alse allows family reunions regardless of the Danish restrictions such as the 24-year requirement , association requirement, hosing requirements, special self-sufficiency requirements, demands of Banker’s guarantees and the
so-called cousin-rules.

Reading an informative post reminds me again what conservatives think of immigrants

happy ramadan 2008

I want to take this opportunity to wish my fellow muslim citizens a happy Ramadan. Enjoy the pictures that Bai Mae put together in the enclosed link.

A blog on the meaning of Ramadan

Time running out for Big Easy residents fleeing Gustav

Gustav slams into Cuba, pictures of the devestation

Some http://ridingustav.blogspot.com/ have decided to stay behind and take a tour of the french quarter

Another blogger is tracking all the info too:

Hurricane Gustav and Google trends

Great post about creating webtraffic. For instance, at this moment "New Orleans webcams" is the most searched on the web.

Google trends has a lot of statistical data

Hurricane Season

Evacuation under way.Gustav slowing down?

Microblogging Gustav and New Orleans evacuation

n an effort to keep people informed of the location and severity of Gustav and other tropical storms and hurricanes, here is a list of some mobile resources.

Twitterfone

Gustavinformationcenter

Hurricane Gustav tracking map

gustav usefull links

Gustav live coverage

People fleeing the "mother of all storms"


'Everybody must go': New Orleans residents line up for buses and trains to flee Gustav. (Reuters: Lee Celano)

Saturday, August 30, 2008

microblogging and democratic development

Afritwit

‘Governance-on-the-Go’, or GonGo: the citizen at the center of an IT-enabled governance breakthrough?

"This allows IT to be embedded into the mobile citizen, thanks to the breakthrough synergy of various technologies. In particular, consider what a citizen can do as s/he goes about their day, thanks to the interaction between the cellphone, SMS text messaging (or MMS for pictures and video) and micro-blogging, such as Twitter. These have already empowered millions of highly mobile citizens everywhere to improve governance, democracy, and peace — and also in poor and remote corners of the world."

Zurich blog camp: Africa is talking, are you listening?

TWitter and Africa

discussion on this topic on identi.ca

Nagin:Get out of New Orleans now: Gustav comming

Isaac Hayes Shaft

Outsourcing democracy and co-creation

Political parties should start tapping into foreign talent.

Several critical factors in order to achieve this.

1)Social networks and other communication tools
To successfully execute within international regions, political parties should start using social networks and other communication tools to engage off-shore talent

2)Cocreation

"Today’s technically savvy generations expect to be included in co-creation processes, often through collaborative communication tools. These co-creation processes are internal, enhance customer experiences, and influence partnering engagements."

3)
"for social engagement across the organization to use these communication tools. Processes must eliminate ethnic, religious and cultural barriers to co-creation."

4)Micro-roles are increasingly prevalent.
bottom up development and participation is essential: micro-contributors, micro-consumers, microbloggers, anyone can participate.

Social media has turned the business upside down, it will do the same thing to political participation within a global context.

The question that a political party should ask itself is: "what's in it for me?"
It’s the end result of an engaged community that matters. To start brainstorming on the benefits for representative bodies in politics:

• Increased pollnumbers
• Enhanced, viral brand reputation
• Feedback on viewpoints
• Better representation
• True understanding of citizens pain points and needs

This is just a quick try, do you have an idea on how outsourcing democracy can help democratic development both at home and abroad?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Barcamp Nairobi

Interesting story on this blog about the social networking, twitter, web 2.0. and it's impact on Africa. Great camp wish I had been there.

pictures of barcamp

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Qui Sème Le Vent Récolte Le Tempo

Un break de batterie, coule sur la FM
Il se mêle à mon sang et fait de moi un phénomène
Etrange, la cadence à fleur de peau
5, 4, 3, 2, 1 tempo
Le vent se lève pour dire que mon Karma
suit la cadence qui me mène au Nirvana
Ensorcelé, le pacte est scellé
La beauté du corps, sans effort, c'est de danser
On me traite de traître quand je traite de la défaite du silence
Le silence est d'or, mais j'ai choisi la cadence
Une vague, un cyclone, que dit la météo ?
Qui sème le vent récolte le tempo (x2)
Chaque mot, chaque phrase dits avec emphase
Fait de Claude MC, le commando de la phrase
Le tempo est roi, dans l'arène musicale
Les rênes sont à moi, torero lexical
Matador, prêt pour la mise à mort, après le corps à corps
Alors fait un effort, remue ton corps plus fort
On est d'accord, pas de temps mort mais sache pourquoi
Parce que le tempo est roi.
Le paramètre est paranormal, que dire ? que dalle !
Claude MC s'installe, ancré dans les annales
Exemples : le rock, la salsa, le twist et le reggae
Petit à petit sans faire de bruit se sont imposés
Car
Qui sème le vent récolte le tempo
Au nom du père, du fils et de Claude MC
Solaar vous invite dans les rap party
car j'suis un MC d'attaque, sans tic, authentique pas
en toc
Prêt à frapper sur le beat pour le mouvement hip-hop
Coûte que coûte j'écoute et je goûte
cette solution acqueuse qui les rend heureuses
C'est du rap liquide fluide créé par un druide un
peu speed
Qui file comme un bolide pour ne pas faire un bide
Du rap d'attaque qui frappe, épate, matraque et
patatraque
Plus de sang tu claques, j'suis MC des carpates
un MC véridique, authentique sans aucune panique
Prêt à frapper sur le beat, alors mon ami écoute
bien cette musique car
Qui sème le vent récolte le tempo
Le pédagogue en vogue au nom du code Solaar ou
Claude MC
te propose d'écouter ceci
Qu'on épèle les voyelles, dès qu'on sonne les consonnes
la musique est bonne
Je prends souvent le temps d'aller de l'avant
Je ne perd pas un instant, car c'est de l'argent
L'argent ne fait pas le bonheur, fait-il le malheur ?
L'essentiel est d'être à la hauteur
Pas de morale sur ces quelques mots
Qui sème le vent récolte le tempo

Mc Solaar

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Why Use Jabber?

We know. All your friends use AIM or ICQ or MSN or Yahoo. So why should you use Jabber?
1)
It's open! No closed, hidden technologies here. Everything is open to inspection and correction.
2)
It's decentralized! No one big consumer silo monitoring all your chats. You can run your own IM service, or use one of the existing public services.
3)
It's secure! We respect your privacy and work hard to ensure that Jabber technologies are as secure as possible.
4)
It's truly free! You don't have to pay to use Jabber - whether payment takes the form of money or advertisements.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Congo week 19-25 october

The advent of modern technology offers the average person remarkable opportunities to effect change throughout the world with very little effort or sacrifice.

There is a number of ways in which you can participate in this historic effort to facilitate change in the heart of Africa. In the late 1800s, renowned figures such as Mark Twain, Booker T. Washington, George Washington Williams, William Sheppard, Roger Casement, Edmund Morel and many others were found at the side of the Congolese in their fight to heal their land and utilize the resources with which they were blessed for the benefit of the Congolese people. Over 100 years later and 4 million Congolese dead since 1998, the same fight continues and you can participate in this historic initiative in the following ways:

• Donate funds and materials
• Organize meetings
• Raise funds
• Write articles
• Translate documents
• Spread the word
• Host events
• Build databases
• Conduct research
• Start a blog on behalf of the Congo
• Create a link to our site
• Start a Congo support group

You may contact us at volunteer@friendsofthecongo.org in order to volunteer.
read more on www.friendsofthecongo.org

Saturday, August 16, 2008

L'observatoire des blogs francophones

interview with one of the bloggers

Zur Begriffsgeschichte des Paradoxons

Klaas Schilder's great article "light through smoke" which he wrote years before his thesis "Zur Begriffsgeschichte des Paradoxons" shows us that using the paradox can be a valuable tool in reading the bible.

In commenting on the following texts he demonstrates how we can read both Old and New Testament consistently:

Deuteronome 30:11-14
Surely, this commandment that I am commanding you today is not too hard for you, nor is it too far away. It is not in heaven, that you should say, ‘Who will go up to heaven for us, and get it for us so that we may hear it and observe it?’ Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say, ‘Who will cross to the other side of the sea for us, and get it for us so that we may hear it and observe it?’ No, the word is very near to you; it is in your mouth and in your heart for you to observe.

Romans 10 6-8
But the righteousness that is by faith says: "Do not say in your heart, 'Who will ascend into heaven?'" that is, to bring Christ down. "or 'Who will descend into the deep?'" (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? "The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart

"This locus classicus (both Deuteronome 30:11-40 and Romans 10 6-8) deserve our special attention because it touches in both forms (old and new testament) on the heart of the reformed teaching (Calvin, Luther, sola fide!). Reading Deuteronome 30:11-40 in the light of the new testament, shows that, allthough the Law is a yoke that makes tired and kills, "having" the Law as contents of the revelation is grace from God."

translated from "Zur Begriffsgeschichte des Paradoxons" page 427/428

What intrigues me here is the potential impact of this conclusion on the political method of the antirevolutionary party of his time and christian political engagement in general.

C'est vrai que des fois les femmes c'est saoûlant !!

Kinshasa On The Potomac

One of the many blogs from people that hate foreigners, immigrants, illegals, muslims etc. Just like northern virginiastan.It's mostly a repetition of the same song over and over, without any creative or innovative approach to political theory and political method.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

It's probably me

Sometimes you just want to cry soo loud:

If the night turned cold
And the stars looked down
And you hug yourself
On the cold, cold ground
You wake the morning
In a stranger's coat
No one would you see

You ask yourself, 'Who'd watch for me?'
My only friend, who could it be?
It's hard to say it
I hate to say it
But it's probably me

When your belly's empty
And the hunger's so real
And you're too proud to beg
And too dumb to steal
You search the city
For your only friend
No one would you see
You ask yourself, 'Who'd watch for me?'
A solitary voice to speak out and set me free
I hate to say it
I hate to say it
But it's probably me

You're not the easiest person I ever got to know
And it's hard for us both to let our feelings show
Some would say
I should let you go your way
You'll only make me cry
But if there's one guy, just one guy
Who'd lay down his life for you and die
It's hard to say it
I hate to say it
But it's probably me

When the world's gone crazy, and it makes no sense
And there's only one voice that comes to your defence
And the jury's out
And your eyes search the room
One friendly face is all you need to see
And if there's one guy, just one guy
Who'd lay down his life for you and die

I hate to say it
I hate to say it
But it's probably me

I hate to say it
I hate to say
But it's probably me
I hate to say it
I hate to say
But it's probably me
I hate to say it
I hate to say
But it's probably me

Rwanda: obscuring the truth about the genocide

Barrie Collins gives us a good history lesson.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

From bloodshed to hope in Burundi

Ambassador Krueger was US ambassador to Burundi in 1994 where he witnessed the attrocities committed by the tutsi-dominated army. When you read his account of an ongoing genocide and you think back how you were living while all this was taking place. People often think of the nazi's and can't imagine it ever to happen again. But in Burundi it came close to the nazi practices. Going into villages and killing innocent women and children just because they belonged to the Hutu tribe. The tutsi tribe had the power, but are a much smaller tribe then the hutu's. The only way they thought they could live was by ensuring domination over the much larger hutu tribe with arms. It's hard to know how the situation in Burundi actually is today, a little better they do say. When you see how motivated people were to join youthgroups that would go around killing in the country side, alot like Hitler jugend in germany. And all those killers are now grown people and probably even the richer class Burundi. Some of them probably even still are integrated into the government. And that is maybe even a good thing. Maybe the integration of hutu rebels into the army has made it less easy for the army to continue their systematic killings. It would be interesting to know if the Rwandan army today has any hutu's integrated into it too today.

Democratisation is a subject on which the book touches, one of the things that Krueger noticed was the fact that the perpetrators were affraid to have him drive around the country and count the dead bodies, thousands a week. The influence of Mandela in the peace process. The division within the Tutsi party Uprona also helped.

Former ambassador Robert E Gribbin to Rwanda has also wrote a book on his experiences from 1996 to 1999. He has a blog at
africa reflections It's a book that sheds some light on why America let Kagame slaughter hundreds of thousands of refugees in Congo without feeling guilty.

War and peace, a book about the tragedy of the millions of refugees in Kivu, gives some information what Gribben's ugly role has been.


Burundi weblog

Saul Alinsky

Saul Alinsky is, along with Thomas Paine, Henry George, and Dorothy Day, one of the great American leaders of the nonsocialist left.

Especially interesting to see what his method is. At first glance it seems to me a very creative and innovative approach to "taking your responsability as citizen seriously". For those who participate in party politics or would like to support democratisation abroad it might give some tools.

A quote "The establishment can accept being screwed, but not being laughed at. What bugs them most about me is that unlike humorless radicals, I have a hell of a good time doing what I'm doing."

"The Prince" was written by Machiavelli for the Haves on how to hold power."rules for Radicals" is written for the Have-Nots how to take it away. In this book Alinsky is concerned with how to create mass organizations to seize power and give it to the people taking the credo of the Spanish Civil War as a summary of revolution: "Better to die on your feet than to live on your knees".

Both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama were highly influenced by Alinsky you can
read in an article on the Obama website . Also an interesting article by Diane Alden on "compromising the conservative movement"

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Democrats Abroad Groningen

A casual gathering on every last Saturday of the month, to meet, chat and have fun! Our voter registration team will also be present, to help you request your absentee ballot.

Come join us at this great location with a terrace. De Kale Jonker Caf� is located at Gedempte Zuiderdiep 148, Groningen (phone 050-3142916) Our voter registration team will also be present, to help you request your absentee ballot.

How Stevens met Bill Evans

Vote from abroad




DemsFun Drinks Groningen
30 August 2008
6 - 8 PM, De Kale Jonker Caf�

A casual gathering on every last Saturday of the month, to meet, chat and have fun! Our voter registration team will also be present, to help you request your absentee ballot.

Come join us at this great location with a terrace. De Kale Jonker Caf� is located at Gedempte Zuiderdiep 148, Groningen (phone 050-3142916) Our voter registration team will also be present, to help you request your absentee ballot.

Angie Stone On Being Dark Skinned In Entertainment

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Rwanda politicians

Qui est Kagame?

Good article in french about Rwanda.

Helmut Strizek on indictment of 40 Rwandan officers



Judge Andreu said he had gathered testimony from 22 people, most of them in exile and now in witness-protection programs. One witness had served on Kagame’s elite security team and testified to seeing Kagame machine-gun to death between 30 and 40 civilians “in a matter of seconds” and later order the killing of three bishops.

Spain indicts 40 Rwandan officers

H. Strizek on Germany's approach of dictator Kagame



"At the end of 1996, the German government did not protest against the internationally illegal attack on refugee camps of Hutus, who had fled to East Congo following Kagame's victory. Shortly before the outbreak of the Congo war, there had been preparations to escort the refugees home to Rwanda, under NATO protection. But this was exactly what Kagame and his allies in the United States did not want. Therefore they spread the hoax, that nearly all refugees had already returned to Rwanda. Uschi Eid, a parliamentarian of the opposition, played a peculiar role. After a brief visit to Rwanda, she confirmed the "return" thesis, although she certainly could not estimate how many Hutus had actually returned. Thereafter the German government also took up this thesis, pleading for aborting the preparations for the NATO deployment. Only afterwards could the refugee camps in East Congo be attacked - allegedly by anti-Mobutu-rebels under Laurent Kabila's leadership - the Hutu refugees were driven westward into the Congo forests and slaughtered by the hundreds of thousands. This is not even disputed by the United Nations."

We all have a role in immigrants’ integration

Article from 2004 about the research on integration and immigration by Antoinette Batumubwira, who is now Burundi's minister of foreign affairs.

Antoinette Batumubwira has studied integration measures in Vantaa. Antoinette arrived in Vantaa almost two years ago. She was born in Burundi and came to Finland with her husband and two daughters. She has a Masters Degree in Information and Communication. Antoinette Batumubwira

Antoinette attended a five month Finnish language course and completed three month’s training in Uudenmaa Employment and Economic Development Centre (TE-keskus). After the training, she began to work in the same office as a Planning Officer. “I am very impressed by the openness of TE-keskus to offer me such interesting work, although my Finnish language was still weak,” Antoinette says.

During her ten-month contract, Antoinette worked on a study about how integration measures function in practice both at Municipality level and in the local Employment Office. She also analysed the City Integration programme and compared it with the everyday integration work at grass root level. Vantaa was chosen to be the target of the study.

In her study Antoinette divides the analyses between three different areas that are responsible in the integration process.
- the host society
- the immigrants themselves
- the integration, social, and employment services

“I believe that the role of the host society, as one of the main actors in the integration process, is not highlighted enough.” For example, in Vantaa she sees the Integration programme as something very, very innovative. However, the way the Integration programme is implemented is not often very multicultural as many of the activities are targeted at only immigrants. “There should be more activities leading to exchange between the migrants’ communities and the host society,” suggests Antoinette.

One of the points indicated in the study is that immigrants should be empowered as partners in the integration work. For example, in associations Antoinette sees a great deal of potentiality, but the associations also need to be strengthened, she says. In Vantaa there are many immigrant organisations but very often they work in the cultural area, although they could have a lot to do and say in larger social questions. In fact, she says, “The Immigrants’ associations could, in the long run, also be partners in the formulation of the city integration policy.”

The study also gives suggestions on how to improve the work of individual integration plans. Antoinette has seen that the partnership relation is often missing in the moment of working on the integration plan and this is due to the immigrant not having enough information to actively participate in the developing the plan. The immigrant should be given adequate information tools before they set up their integration plan, also the officials, especially the employment office counsellors, need to have enough information on the immigrant’s background in order to assist them in designing a realistic integration plan.

Antoinette Batumubwira’s study, entitled “The route towards integration: the share of every one”, is published on September 30, 2004.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

maps of congo

Tom Odom's killing time in Congo's small war

Tom Odom trying to influence debate on Kagame

Tom Odom is defending Paul kagame very recently. It indicates to me he is trying to use the timing ot the report that was issued by a "committee" that acused france of being implicated in the genocide.

Tom Odom says he doesn't see Paul kagame as a dictator because "his leadership is drawn from communal consent within the RPF".


Wow, great definition of democracy man. The RPF doesn't represent the rwandan people, that election was a fraud.

The Refugee Camps as an External Threat

As you can read here, Colonel Thomas P. Odom admires Kagame.

It is chilling to read that this man is actually a US soldier:

"Hard-liners turned against any of the DPs who cooperated and soon the camp was fleeing inward toward the Zambian positions. Hard-liners drove other DPs like cattle to try and break through RPA lines and the RPA commander lost control of the situation. RPA troops and Hutu hard-liners massacred some 2,000 people one evening before the situation was brought under control"

The way he writes about refugee camps in Congo sends chills down your spine when you know how many people have been slaughtered in Congo by Kagame's butchers:

The Refugee Camps as an External Threat

The more long-term problem, the Rwandan Hutu refugee camps--especially those in Zaire--were the most serious threats to the RPF's control of Rwanda

Rwanda and Kagame viewed differently by 4 embassies in the region

Not everyone agreed with our initiative and certainly not everyone agreed with our thinking. The reaction from the Department of State was in a phrase one of muted indifference. Our fellow embassies around Rwanda said little as well. In the case of the U.S. Embassy in Zaire, that indifference would soon grow to near open hostility. As a mission, they did not accept the premise that the camps in Zaire might actually hold bad people armed with guns and ill intent. The same could be said of the U.S. Embassy in Burundi; as a mission, they saw the Rwandan situation as a mirror image of Burundi where a "bad Tutsi army" dominated a "good Hutu" democratic government. In contrast, the U.S. Embassy in Uganda was a source of great collaboration and cooperation. Gratefully, I believe that the Central African War cable combined with our campaign plan cable prompted the Department of State and its African Bureau to take a more regional approach to the problems. Ambassador Richard Bogosian as a regional envoy breathed real life into that regional approach. On the military side, the U.S. European Command took the campaign plan to heart and accepted it almost in total as did the Rwanda watchers and policy makers in the Department of Defense. Overall I would point to these two cables as a key lesson: it is better to take the initiative and stake out an approach rather than waiting for Washington D.C. to issue instructions. Operating in that manner is more likely to result in policy and actions that reflect the actual situation. Put another way, "it is better to beg forgiveness than to beg permission." For more detail on the country team, the campaign plan, and Ambassador Rawson see Odom

The tempest

The very instant that I saw you did
My heart fly to your service; there resides,
To make me slave to it; and, for your sake,
Am I this patient [b]log--man.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

black women center

Upcoming launching of the Black European Women's Council on Sept. 9th 2008 in the premises of the European Economic and Social Committee Rue Van maelant 1040 Brussels.

Kagame still supporting turmoil in congo

Not your father's L'abri

I know L'abri and the context in which it has operated. I'll maybe give my view on this sometime.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Killing time in Kinshasa:

Opposition party leader Mokia Mandembo has been hijacked.

Assination of the vice president of the provincial assemblee of Kinshasa, Daniel Dadou Bokeli Boteti, Member of Bemba's party MLC.

A popular actor Mbonge has been killed 22 and 23 juillet in Kinshasa.

Prosper Katoto Kassor, advisor to prime minister Antoine Gizenga was found in a suburb of the city. He had disappeared since 21 july.

Kagame Alain Jupé

Congolais sur la controverse Kagame

Le blog d'Alain Jupé

Sleep early and sleep often

* Go to bed at the same time nightly.
* Set aside enough time to hit that golden 7 hours of sleep.
* Refrain from caffeine, heavy or spicy foods, and alcohol and other optional medications that might keep you awake, four to six hours before bed-time.
* Have a pre-sleep routine so you wind down before you hop in.
* Block out distracting lights and noises.
* Only engage in sleep and sex in bed (no TV-watching, reading or eating).
* Exercise regularly but not right before bed.

But you already know all this and you don't do it. So your realistic plan might be to surrender to the mid-day desk nap.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Googles nine rules of innovation

Marissa Mayer is the Google’s vice president of search products and user experience. With two Stanford degrees in computer science. She’s also Google’s high priestess of simplicity. Here she shares the rules that give the search giant its innovative edge.

1. Innovation, not instant perfection

2. Ideas come from everywhere

3. A license to pursue your dreams

4. Morph projects don’t kill them


5. Share as much information as you can


6. Users, users, users


7. Data is apolitical


8. Creativity loves constraints


9. You’re brilliant? We’re hiring

Jugendstil in Budapest

Budapest-Bamako

Seedcamp


Seedcamp Week 2007 from Seedcamp on Vimeo.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Adolescent Lovers Studied

That Russian boy listening

Kigali poor neighboorhood bulldozered

The blog about this issue is written by Robert Neuwirth, a writer who spent two years living in squatter communities in four continents.

On his blogs, he has three he writes: "These neighborhoods--which dominate most of the cities of the developing world--are vibrant and energetic, but horribly misunderstood. My book, Shadow Cities, is an attempt to humanize these maligned settlements. I'm now at work on a new book about the global reach of the informal economy and I'll soon be starting a new blog featuring news and views of the quasi-legal world. My articles on cities, politics, and economic issues have appeared in many publications, including The Nation, The Village Voice, Newsday, The New York Times, Metropolis, and City Limits. Before becoming a reporter, I worked as a community organizer and studied philosophy. I live in New York City."

I'm in heaven

"Spaans gerechtsdossier tegen Kagame is uniek en historisch"

copyright "de morgen"
Het Spaanse gerechtelijk dossier tegen veertig Rwandezen, onder wie de huidige president Paul Kagame, die vervolgd worden wegens genocide, is uniek en historisch. Het is de eerste keer dat een zittend president gerechtelijk wordt vervolgd. Dat zegt Filip Reyntjens, professor Internationaal Recht aan de Universiteit Antwerpen en Afrika-deskundige.

Genocide
Woensdag raakte bekend dat de hoogste gerechtelijke instantie in Spanje veertig Rwandese militairen vervolgt wegens genocide, misdaden tegen de mensheid en terrorisme.

Het Spaanse gerecht opende het onderzoek in 2005 na een klacht van het Internationaal Forum voor Waarheid en Gerechtigheid in het Afrikaanse Grote-Merengebied. Vandaag gaven vertegenwoordigers van de families van de Rwandese slachtoffers een persconferentie in Brussel.

RPF
Op 6 april 1994 werd in Rwanda het vliegtuig van president Juvénal Habyarimana neergeschoten en kwam de president om het leven. Tijdens de genocide die daarop volgde, werden zowat 800.000 etnische Tutsi's en gematigde Hutu's om het leven gebracht door Hutu's. De genocide eindigde nadat de Tutsi-rebellen, het Rwandees Patriottisch Front (RPF) onder leiding van Paul Kagame, in juli 1994 de controle over het Afrikaanse land overnamen.

Getuigen en documenten
De verantwoordelijken van de Tutsi-milities hebben zich volgens het Spaanse onderzoek schuldig gemaakt aan tal van misdaden. De Spaanse rechter Fernando Andreu baseert zich op een twintigtal getuigen en relevante documenten. De militairen en oversten van het RPF hebben zich volgens de rechter schuldig gemaakt aan de massamoord op Hutu's in Rwanda en in vluchtelingenkampen in het naburige Congo (toen Zaïre). Ook hebben ze volgens het dossier negen Spaanse missionarissen en hulpverleners omgebracht. Ze zouden volgens sommige getuigen ook verantwoordelijk zijn voor de moord op de Belgische zuster Griet Bosmans.

Plundering
Het Spaans dossier gaat zelfs verder dan de misdaden die het RPF in 1994 zou hebben begaan. Er zijn aanwijzingen dat de milities ook tussen 1990 en 1994 talloze Hutu's, voornamelijk burgers, ombrachten. Ook tussen 1995 en 1998 hebben de milities onder leiding van Kagame zich schuldig gemaakt aan massamoorden op Rwandese en Congolese burgers en vluchtelingen, zegt de Spaanse rechter. Tot slot zouden ze zich ook schuldig gemaakt hebben aan de plundering van natuurlijke rijkdommen in Rwanda en Congo, zoals goud, diamant en kobalt.

Zittend president
Het gerechtelijk onderzoek is volgens professor Reyntjens "uniek en historisch". "Naar mijn weten is het de eerste keer dat een zittend president van zo'n misdaad beschuldigd wordt. En het is de eerste keer dat de 'overwinnaars' van het Rwandese drama door een rechtbank beschuldigd worden. Het is naar mijn aanvoelen ook een sterk dossier", zegt de Antwerpse professor.

Immuniteit
Kagame geniet als huidig president immuniteit. De andere beschuldigden krijgen in principe tien dagen de tijd om zich aan de Spaanse gevangenis te melden. Vermoed wordt dat de veertig beschuldigden, die bijna allemaal een hoge diplomatieke functie hebben en over de wereld verspreid zijn, zich niet bij de Spaanse rechter zullen aanmelden.

Erkenning
Het internationaal VN-tribunaal voor Rwanda in Arusha (Tanzania) zou de feiten ook kunnen vervolgen, maar durft volgens deskundigen niet. Het Spaanse onderzoek duurde bijna drie jaar en wordt nog steeds voortgezet. Dat het de Spaanse rechter menens is, is duidelijk een daad van erkenning voor de honderden families van de Rwandese en Congolese slachtoffers, zegt Jordi Palou-Loverdos, een Spaans advocaat die optreedt voor de families en talloze Europese en Amerikaanse vredesorganisaties.

Het regime van Kagame in Kigali heeft voorlopig nog niet gereageerd op de aantijgingen. (belga/ka)

Friday, August 1, 2008

Les pays-Bas transgressent les traités européens et les conventions internationales

Lire l'interview avec Jamal Ryane, président de la Plate-forme Intercontinentale des MRE, avec Libé.

Résumé de la conférence sur les MRE du 7 juin dernier aux Pays-Bas

La ville de Haarlem aux Pays-Bas a connu le 7 juin 2008 une conférence ayant comme sujet « Les Marocains de Hollande : Un instant pour passer les choses en revue et y mettre de l’ordre ».
Cette conférence qui a été organisée par la Plate forme intercontinentale des MRE en collaboration avec le Conseil islamique de Hollande, a rassemblé plus de 100 participants.
L’organisation de cette conférence s’inscrit pleinement dans le cadre de la situation de turbulence et de dispersion que connaît la Communauté marocaine résidant en Hollande, sans oublier la mauvaise réputation que lui collent les médias de masse sous toutes ses formes, ce qui n’inspire pas à l’optimisme.
Jamal Ryane, Président de la Plate forme intercontinentale des MRE, a ouvert la conférence par un mot de bienvenue, en faisant allusion aux problèmes divers vécus par les MRE, tout en invitant les jeunes à investir les domaines de la communication et de la politique. Il a également abordé le rôle joué par les soldats marocains dans la libération de la Hollande, du nazisme. Il a également revendiqué l’instauration de la journée du martyr marocain, afin qu’un hommage lui soit rendu annuellement le 4 mai, ceci afin que les Européens sachent que les Marocains ne sont pas venus dans un premier temps pour améliorer leur niveau de vie économique, mais plutôt pour libérer l’Europe du nazisme et du fascisme.
En ce qui concerne le champ religieux, Jamal Ryane a insisté sur la nécessité de procéder à une opération chirurgicale et de ne pas laisser des profanes diriger les mosquées, qui sont appelées à jouer un rôle politique dans le quartier, tout en étant un centre ouvert aux jeunes pour les prémunir contre les groupes extrémistes. Il a finalement conclu par l’appel au rejet des conflits et du tribalisme.
Le professeur et docteur David Pinto, juif marocain, a fait une intervention qui a été applaudie par le public présent à propos des Marocains de Hollande et la politique. Il a parlé de la nécessité pour la communauté marocaine de ne compter que sur elle même et de se prendre en charge. David Pinto a également noté que l’intégration et la participation des Marocains au sein de la société hollandaise, ne sont pas un obstacle pour l’attachement à l’identité marocaine et islamique et à leur droit de la préserver.
Il a abordé la question de l’enseignement de la langue arabe qui se passait en lieu et place des cours de néerlandais et de mathématiques, et où l’enfant marocain était perdant. Il s’est demandé s’il s’agissait d’une politique qui visait à exclure l’arabe du cursus scolaire, ce qui est de plus en plus le cas. La participation à la vie politique est en effet nécessaire pour nous (MRE) imposer, et avoir de l’influence sur la politique générale menée par les partis au pouvoir.
Dans son intervention à propos de la situation de la femme marocaine, Fatima Taihane, conseillère communale, a mis l’accent sur le succès engrangé par la fille marocaine dans le domaine de l’éducation. 70% d’entre elles parviennent à l’enseignement supérieur et académique. Elles dépassent de loin les garçons qui, eux, abandonnent tôt et par grand nombre les établissements scolaires, sans diplômes.
En contrepartie, le succès réalisé par les filles a eu des répercussions négatives quant à la composition de la famille. Fatima Tahiane a souligné le fait que la femme marocaine atteint des postes importants, et que désormais, nous disposons de marocaines au sein du paysage audio-visuel hollandais.
Le professeur Anas Bendrif, chercheur en islam, a parlé du rôle de la religion et de celui des mosquées marocaines dans la participation de la communauté marocaine au sein de la société hollandaise. Il a abordé le rôle de la mosquée à travers les siècles et du rôle qu’il a joué et qu’il continue à jouer. Abas Bendrif s’est demandé si l’Europe, après les évènements du 11 septembre et de Madrid, cherchait à développer un islam européen, qui irait de pair avec son développement.
Il a exposé les bienfaits de l’expérience turque, a insisté sur le fait que la mosquée doit rester ouverte en tant que centre de communication à l’intérieur du quartier avec des gérants compétents, et que cette dernière ne devrait pas devenir une copie des mosquées rurales marocaines.
Il a rendu hommage à la jeunesse marocaine qui a réussi à se maîtriser face à la sortie du film Fitna du parlementaire extrémiste de droite Geert Wilders, puis qu’il n’y a pas eu d’actes violents comme l’aurait souhaité l’extrême droite.
Ed Klute, le directeur du prestigieux institut de communication Mira Media, a parlé des médias de masse hollandais et de leur comportement à l’égard de la communauté marocaine. Il a confirmé le manque d’objectivité des médias hollandais vis-à-vis de la communauté marocaine et des musulmans en général, surtout après les évènements du 11 septembre et l’assassinat du réalisateur Théo Van Gogh.
Il a rendu hommage à la conscience et à la sagesse avec lesquelles la communauté marocaine a fait face au film Fitna et a rappelé la nécessité de former de cadres marocains spécialisés dans le domaine de la communication sous toutes ses formes.
Ensuite, un débat avec le public a porté sur la situation pénible que traverse la communauté marocaine et les voies pour y remédier. La plupart des intervenants étaient unanimes sur le fait qu’il était que la communauté marocaine s’unisse en vue d’affronter les défis auxquels elle fait face.
Il a également été décidé d’organiser une conférence en novembre prochain, au cours de laquelle l’on discutera des moyens d’unifier la communauté marocaine en Hollande dans un cadre représentatif de ses intérêts et de qui serait son porte parole officiel.

International Conference on Peace and Development in the Great Lakes Region,

You can here read the report on the conference held in the peace palace. Rwanda's current government tried to sabotage the event. When you read the report it gives you insight in what Paul Kagame stands for.

Africa And U.S. Foreign Policy

Sharon Gramby-Sobukwe

Rutgers University, Camden

This article is an assessment of the role of African Americans in effecting democratic African politics and leadership. Assessments of African development provide the basis for explaining African contemporary leadership challenges and a survey of U.S. foreign policy toward Africa is used to evaluate the domestic political environment that elicited African Americans’ political activism on behalf of Africa. Two historic case studies, of Italy’s invasion of Ethiopia in 1935 and the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa during the 1980s, are used to identify, characterize, and assess African Americans’ political influence on African development and leadership. The article assesses the means, motivation, and impact of African American political activity on behalf of Africa to explain how democratic movements may improve African leadership. The article concludes that African Americans most effectively contribute to democratic development in Africa when they interact directly with African social and political organizations to encourage responsive, effective leadership.

Eritrean diaspora conference Netherlands

Skûtsjesilen