Environmentalists killed 2018 by country and sector. Credit: Global Witness.

How governments and business silence land and environmental defenders

Enemies of the State: How governments and business silence land and environmental defenders Global Witness July 2019

Calls to protect the planet are growing louder – but around the world, those defending their land and our environment are being silenced. More than three such people were murdered on average every week in 2018, with attacks driven by destructive industries like mining, logging and agribusiness. This year, our annual report on the killings of land and environmental defenders also reveals how countless more people were threatened, arrested or thrown in jail for daring to oppose the governments or companies seeking to profit from their land. These are ordinary people trying to protect their homes and livelihoods, and standing up for the health of our planet. Often their land is violently grabbed to produce goods used and consumed across the world every day, from food, to mobile phones, to jewellery. Continue reading.

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Graphic. Environmentalists killed 2018 by country and sector. Credit: Global Witness.

Oppression and Exploitation News August 22 – 28

Conflict 2019

Massacred at home, in misery abroad, 730,000 Rohingya are mired in hopelessness Hannah Beech New York Times August 22, 2019

The two-year Rohingya crisis in three timelapse satellite GIFs Irwin Loy The New Humanitarian August 22, 2019

Opposing oppression, injustice 2019

The creeping criminalization of humanitarian aid The New Humanitarian June 7, 2019
“At the heart of the trial of a volunteer with American migrant aid group No More Deaths that began in Arizona last week lies the question of when humanitarian aid crosses the line and becomes a criminal offense…. Aid organizations have long faced suspensions in difficult operating environments due to geopolitical or domestic political concerns – from Pakistan to Sudan to Burundi – but they now face a new criminalization challenge from Western governments, whether it’s rescue missions in the Mediterranean or toeing the US counter-terror line in the Middle East. ”

An Arizona teacher helped migrants. Jurors couldn’t decide if it was a crime. Miriam Jordan New York Times June 11, 2019

Discrimination against women 2019

Women are fleeing death at home. The United States wants to keep them out. Azam Amhed New York Times August 18, 2019.
“To win asylum in the United States, applicants must show specific grounds for their persecution back home, like their race, religion, political affiliation or membership in a particular social group. Lawyers have sometimes pushed successfully for women to qualify as a social group because of the overwhelming violence they face, citing a 2014 case in which a Guatemalan woman fleeing domestic violence was found to be eligible to apply for asylum in the United States. But Mr. Sessions overruled that precedent, questioning whether women — in particular, women fleeing domestic violence — can be members of a social group. The decision challenged what had become common practice in asylum courts.”

Teenage brides trafficked to China reveal ordeal: ‘Ma, I’ve been sold’ Hannah Beech New York Times August 17, 2019

Oppression and Exploitation News August 16 – 22

Struggle for control 2019

How the idea that some people are better than others and deserve to rule the country, descended from the ideas of the slave-owners of the South, came to be a central part of the contemporary Republican party, and the implications of this for U.S. democracy.
America holds onto an undemocratic assumption from its founding: that some people deserve more power than others Jamelle Bouie New York Times August 14, 2018

Opposing oppression, injustice 2019

Unpaid miners blocked a coal train in protest. Weeks later, they’re still there. Campbell Robinson New York Times August 19, 2019

Harm through the market 2019

The sugar that saturates the American diet has a barbaric history as the ‘white gold’ that fueled slavery Khalil Gabran Muhammad New York Times August 14, 2019

Crime 2019

As gang murders surge, South Africa sends army to Cape Town, and the city cheers Kimon de Greef New York Times August 13, 2019

Violation of laws and norms that form and strengthen democracy

With ‘Spygate,’ Trump shows how he uses conspiracy theories to erode trust Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Maggie Haberman New York Times May 28, 2019 (News analysis)