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A. Picazo: No Scrutiny Please, They’re Saudi.

This op-ed appeared in The Ottawa Citizen on October 1, 2015. In 2014, on the shores of Lake Geneva and next to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, a lavish ceremony was held to honour the recipient of the Moral Courage Award — an annual honour bestowed by UN Watch, a Geneva-based NGO dedicated to … Continue reading →

Akaash Maharaj - Practical Idealism: Akaash Maharaj: Addressing the United Nations

Political corruption kills more people than war and famine combined. I addressed the United Nations on how the international community can and must act to bring kleptocrats to justice.

Dead Wild Roses: The DWR Sunday Disservice – Burnt in a Cage – Why We Need the UN.

The BBC gives a little more background –

” Islamic State has become synonymous with viciousness – beheadings, crucifixions, stonings, massacres, burying victims alive and religious and ethnic cleansing.

While such savagery might seem senseless to the vast majority of civilised human beings, for IS it is a rational choice. It is a conscious decision to terrorise enemies and impress and co-opt new recruits.”

How does one deal with the grotesquery and horror that is going on in Syria/Iraq? The ISIL show executions are delivered to social media with frightful regularity. Mass executions, beheadings, and now people (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Leehi Yona: Canadians’ best interests “certainly not represented” at COP20

Canada’s best interests weren’t represented at the recent COP20 climate conference in Peru, argues Leehi Yona, a Canadian youth delegate recently named one of Canada’s top environmentalist under 25.

The post Leehi Yona: Canadians’ best interests “certainly not represented” at COP20 appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Bill Longstaff: Human Rights 365

“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”

Thus reads Article I of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a declaration adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 10th, 1948. The words remain both wishful thinking and an inspiration to create a

Paul S. Graham: Canada continues to occupy stage right

Canada’s position on the world stage continues to embarrass and disturb.

On Nov. 4, Canada, along with Ukraine and United States, voted against a draft resolution entitled “Combating glorification of Nazism and other practices that contribute to fuelling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.”

It’s a lengthy document, but worth the time it takes to read. As you read through the resolution, ask yourself why any decent human being would oppose it. Surely, only racists, bigots and nazis could find this resolution offensive.

In this instance, it seems likely that the US and Canada chose (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Stephen Harper’s 2014 United Nations General Assembly Address

On Thursday, Prime Minister Stephen Harper addressed the United Nations General Assembly for the first time since Canada lost a UN Security Council bid in 2010.

The post Stephen Harper’s 2014 United Nations General Assembly Address appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Screaming Voices

It was one of the weirdest most surrealistic days in the long and dark history of Harperland.A day when all the voices in Stephen Harper's head seemed to be screaming at the same time.WAR !!!! PEACE !!!! EARLY ELECTION !!!!And in the House of Commons madness ruled.Read more »

The Canadian Progressive: Romeo Dallaire’s last Senate speech criticized Harper’s foreign policy

Romeo Dallaire, the retired Canadian general who led a UN peacekeeping force in Rwanda during the African country’s 1993 genocide, used his last Senate speech to criticize Harper’s foreign policy.

The post Romeo Dallaire’s last Senate speech criticized Harper’s foreign policy appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Canadian Progressive: Gaza Conflict: Canadian man wants Harper charged with inciting genocide

A Newfoundland man says PM Harper and Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird should be charged under Canada’s Criminal Code for inciting “genocide” in Gaza.

The post Gaza Conflict: Canadian man wants Harper charged with inciting genocide appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Alberta Diary: Climate change divestment movement gains ground in church – but not in Canadian media or political circles

Ho-hum… Some typical Canadian reporters, hard at work … Actual Canadian newsrooms may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Is he more influential than we imagined in Alberta?


When retired South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu visited Alberta’s Tarpatch capital of Fort McMurray last month and called the output from bitumen mining “filth,” the commentary here in Alberta was pretty predictable.

The right-wing rage machine creaked briefly to life, complained bitterly about celebrities who don’t know what they’re talking about just passing through, and then moved on to other complaints.

About the kindest thing said about (Read more…)

Bill Longstaff: Today is the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers

Fifty-eight years ago, one of Canada’s most honourable contributions to the international community was born. The first armed UN peacekeeping mission, an emergency force formed to deal with the Suez crisis, was created, largely due to the efforts of then Canadian Minister of External Affairs Lester B. Pearson. Pearson was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts.

In 2002, the United

Alberta Diary: Alison Redford set to sue Alberta Government for wrongful dismissal

The $45,000 Question: How could they put Alison Redford on probation … and then not give her a chance to shape up?

Former premier Alison Redford intends to sue the government of Alberta for wrongful dismissal.

The former premier believes that because she was given a “work plan” by the leadership of the province’s Progressive Conservative government and then forced to step aside before actually having a chance to prove she could do the job as set out in the plan her lawsuit has a strong chance of success, said a spokesperson for the former premier.

“The ‘work plan’ was (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Ted Cruz: For God (& country’s) sake, talk to Conrad Black before you shred your Canadian passport!

Canada or USA? USA or Canada? Texas Senator Ted Cruz, visible between the signs, ponders what he should do. Actual Tea Party favourites may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Mr. Cruz waves bye-bye to his fellow Canadians … maybe; Lord Black of Crossharbour.

It’s said here that Calgary native Ted Cruise needs to make an appointment to have a serious chat with Conrad Black before he makes any rash and irrevocable decisions to run his Canadian passport through the shredder.

Mr. Cruz is now the junior Senator from Texas and a favourite of the Tea Party, a group that (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: UN Report Says Small-Scale Organic Farming Only Way to Feed the World

Richard Hughes-Political Blogger

It could be done individually and co-operatively in a great many locations such as the Cowichan Valley.

Organic Gardening – Farming, should become an integral part of our children’s education with training and hands on learning experiences from primary onwards.

Skilled gardener/farmer teachers could be brought in to lead in the development of workable programs. Such an approach could go a long way in helping to provide the tools and knowledge that will be needed for future generations.

The Cowichan Green Community is an excellent source and resource. They already play an important role in this regard (Read more…)

Akaash Maharaj - Practical Idealism: Akaash Maharaj – News: Corruption Declared a Crime Against Humanity

Reuters reports on our efforts at the United Nations: There are some forms of corruption so grave, whose effects on human life, human rights, and human welfare are so catastrophic, that they should shock the conscience of the international community and mobilise the will of nations to act across borders. They are Crimes Against Humanity, and should be prosecuted in the highest national and international courts.

Akaash Maharaj - Practical Idealism: Akaash Maharaj – Huffington Post: The True Cost of Political Corruption

Every year, political corruption kills 140 000 children across the world, by depriving them of food, water, and medical care. My GOPAC parliamentary colleagues and I are at the United Nations UNCAC to bring the worst offenders before the bar of international law.

Akaash Maharaj - Practical Idealism: Akaash Maharaj: Fighting a Crime Against Humanity

My Huffington Post article: Political corruption kills 140 000 children annually, by depriving them of medical care, food, and water. Yet, far too often, the perpetrators of the most outrageous acts of corruption are able to use their illicit wealth and power to pervert the very laws and institutions that should call them to account. This past week, my GOPAC colleagues and I presented the United Nations UNCAC with a plan to bring them to justice. A clear message to the world

FB.Event.subscribe(‘edge.create’, function(response) { _gaq.push(['_trackEvent','SocialSharing','Facebook - like button',unescape(String(response).replace(/\+/g, " "))]); }); Share this: Regardless of one’s political predilections, one’s attitude toward the policies of Israel’s current government, or one’s view of Benjamin Netanyahu’s strengths and weaknesses as a retail politician, one has to admire the Israeli prime minister’s ability to make his point. His speech before the United Nations General Assembly in 2012 will long be […]

The Canadian Progressive: CHRC statement on meeting with UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, James Anaya

Canadian Human Rights Commission statement on meeting with James Anaya, the visiting United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

The post CHRC statement on meeting with UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, James Anaya appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Harper Continues To Isolate Canada

With Harper and his band of geniuses running around the UN this, it’s actually been kind of interesting.  As I pointed out back in May, Harper’s foreign policy has served primarily to isolate Canada on the world stage, and continue the far-right narrative about the “irrelevance” of the United Nations. Today, in what must be a first in history, Canada refused to sign a UN treaty which the US agreed to sign.   Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird has said there is a potential link between signing on to the treaty and Canada’s now-abolished long gun registry. Baird’s (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: The Incredible Shrinking Steve Harper

Golly. If Stephen Harper's stature on the world stage keeps shrinking we're going to have to swap that magnifying glass for a microscope eh? Yesterday we found out how low he has sunk. When the New York Times accused him of muzzling scientists in a monstrous attempt to "guarantee public ignorance."Today we found out how small he has shrunk. Read more »

drive-by planet: Ecuador’s Ricardo Patiño on Latin American resistance to NSA spying, influence of Castro and Chavez

In this Democracy Now interview, Ecuadorean Foreign Minister, Ricardo Patiño, addresses a range of topics in discussion with Amy Goodman.

In reference to NSA spying Patiño said “Edward Snowden opened the eyes of the world to an international crime. The NSA is spying on the whole world and that’s a violation of international law. Furthermore, it doesn’t just violate international law, it violates international trust.”

NSA spying has caused significant diplomatic fall-out. Brazilian president, Dilma Rousseff, has cancelled her upcoming state visit to Washington to protest NSA spying directed at targets in Brazil. She described it as “a (Read more…)

Song of the Watermelon: A Q&A on Syria and the “Responsibility to Protect”

What is “Responsibility to Protect”?

“Responsibility to Protect,” or R2P, is a doctrine that grew out of a 2001 report by the Canadian-established International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty (ICISS). Unanimously endorsed as a general principle by the UN General Assembly four years later, R2P carries a hefty moral (though not legal) weight. The doctrine holds that it is the responsibility of nation states to protect their populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity, and that if they prove unwilling or unable to do so, responsibility falls on the international community. As a last resort, (Read more…)