Monday, 23 September 2013

Terror at the Mall

Nairobi, capital of Kenya
By now the world has seen the footage of terrified and mourning families fleeing the hail of bullets from Al Shabab fighters at the upscale Israeli owned Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya on Saturday. Kenyan troops and police have been in a three day standoff with the unseen armed Shabab gunmen. Now British and Israeli military advisers are currently aiding Kenyan police. Kenya is one of the safer countries in East Africa alongside its neighbors Tanzania, Uganda and Ethiopia. It has a booming economy and like Egypt relies heavily on tourism for revenue. Nairobi is home to 3.1 million people made up of Kenyans and foreigners from a variety of countries around Africa and across the world. Somalia borders Kenya to its West and the largest refugee camp Daraab in East Africa is home to a large Somali population the majority who are women and children who fled the war and conflict in Somalia over the past decade. Southern Somalia including Mogadishu, the capital, has experienced hell on earth as al shabab and other militant groups continue to fight and bomb towns and villages. Somalia holds the record in Africa and the world for existing without a functioning government for over twenty plus years . Some 60 innocent Kenyans of all ethnicities ie Indians, Westerners, Africans, Somali descendant, etc have been confirmed dead while some 100+ people have been injured. Kenyans have been giving blood for the victims while eagerly awaiting news on their relatives. Alongside other African Union troops, Kenyan troops are currently stationed in Somalia fighting the Shabab formerly known as the Islamic Courts Union. Many foreign fighters including Westerners have joined Al Shabab to fight against the AU troops and foreign intervention in local Somali Affairs. This still does not justify the attack on families shopping at a mall.

White shadows and the western jihadists of Al Shabab

Nairobi Westgate mall attack

Somalia/Kenya: US policy in Somalia hinders peace in the region

Kenyan bloodbath: Reaping the benefits of US AFRICOM Collaboration

US-Israeli interests in Somalia hinders stabilization of the region

Blood weekend explodes Washington's Contradiction over Al Qaeda and War on Terror

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Aaron Alexis and the crazed gunman

The suspected gunman of Navy Yard in Washington, DC which left 13 people dead (including the gunman) from ages 43-76 has been identified as 34 year old New York born Texan Aaron Alexis. The gunman was a sub contractor or contractor for a private IT company with a public trust clearance which allowed him to enter the Navy Yard base without being subjected to vehicle and body inspections faced by regular visitors and non clearance personnel. Authorities have been trying to piece together how a man who suffered from mental health problems was able to have easy access to deadly assault rifles and weapons. Alexis himself complained of hearing voices and tried to receive mental health support from the Veteran's Affairs hospital or VA Hospital. He joins the list of previous American gunmen Adam Lanza, Aurora shooter, Jared Loughner, etc who not only have mental problems but posse a threat to society via their terrorist actions although mass shootings are not considered as terrorism in the United States. This shooting mirrors the shooting at Fort Hood by Army Physician Nadal Hassan and is the top 12 deadliest shootings in recent US history. Once again the gun debate has revived on what must be done to halt the next mass shooting.

He has been described by his friends as friendly, helpful, quiet and fluent in Thai. He volunteered his time at a local Fort Worth restaurant Happy Bowl (apt ally named) where he was able to practice his Thai and thought of visiting Thailand one day. Incidentally, he was also becoming a practicing Buddhist. Some who knew him were in disbelieve that Alexis had carried out the attacks. His family in Brooklyn is distraught, despite Aaron's two previous arrest by police for firing pistols into a neighbor's floor in Fort Worth and shooting a car tire in Seattle, Washington. His brother in law said he and his sister were stunned by the actions and didn't expect their brother in law to be the wanted suspect. Alexis' father explained in a report that his son had anger issues and suffered from PTSD as a result of helping recovery efforts after September 11th attacks in 2001. Alexis is a life long New Yorker who several years ago moved to FT Worth, Texas. Some reports say Aaron Alexis was a discharged Navy reservist dealing with PTSD as many Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam Veterans deal with on a daily basis.

The City Upon the Hill: American Exceptionalism and Redemptive violence

First detailed reports on Navy Yard shooting

How did D.C. shooter Aaron Alexis get a gun and security clearance?

The Mid Atlantic region of the US also known as the Northeast known for its extreme weathers and most populous city New York City or New York where Alexis was born and grew up some 4 hours and 40 mins away from the US' capital Washington, DC sandwiched between the states of Maryland and Virginia where Alexis committed his crime on Monday Sept 16, 2013.

DC Shooter's Mom speaks out, heartbroken, apologizes to victims

Monday, 16 September 2013

Washington, DC Navy Yard Shooting leaves 12 dead

The gunman has been identified as 34 year old Aaron Alexis of Fort Worth, Texas
Foreground photo of Aaron Alexis, the suspected gunman killed in Navy Yard-Washington, DC

An early morning and mid afternoon shooting has left 12 people dead at the Washington, DC Navy Yard, home to the US Navy Sea Command. Originally it was reported only one gunman was at the scene but as of 3pm there are three wanted gunmen who is confirmed dead and two, members of the Navy at large. Police, FBI and the US Marshalls have cordoned off the Navy Yard area and the Marines are protecting their barracks near by. This is not the first mass shooting in DC or on a military base. A decade ago, a sniper dubbed the DC Sniper went on a rampage across the DC area killing 6+ people. Recently, a disgruntled Army physician Nadal Hasan rampaged through Fort Hood base in Texas killing 12 people mostly soldiers the same number currently being reported for the Navy Yard. Hasan suffered from PTSD and disturbed by the possibility of having to return to Iraq on a second tour.

DC Navy Yard Shooting Updates via RT (Russia Today)

Navy Yard has long history: NPR

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Two 9/11s Chile and United States

The world has witness sad coincidences on a grand scale for decades. This year marks several important anniversaries. Perhaps the most coincidental is September 11 attacks of 2001 and 1973.

The first 9/11 in 2001 needs no introduction for anyone to understand its magnitude and horror. Some 3,000+Americans in New York, Pentagon and Pennsylvania were brutally killed by four airplanes turned into missiles and crashed into buildings. 12 years later the pain is still just as fresh as it was than.

September 11th Attacks-As it happened, Before the Break Bulletins and continues

9/11 Zero Hour part 1

CNN Live Coverage of Pentagon attack 9/11/2001

September 11, 1973 Santiago Chile, 40 years later

The second and original 9/11. To the south of the United States is the South American nation of Chile. Currently, Chile is doing economically well despite continuous student protests for education reform. In 1973, Chile witness its first assult against its government and people from a CIA backed coup against the Democratically elected Chilean president Salvador Allende. The September 11 Coup brought the Fascist, military commander Augusto Pinochet to power. Pinochet implemented neoliberal policies at the expense of Chilean people an attempt to give a shock to the economy and rapidly develop Chile into a developed country. The military invaded the Presidential Palace in Santiago the Chilean capital where Allende committed suicide. Allende was a left leaning leader who received support from wide sections of Chilean society ie students, families, union workers and peasants as well as the poor who were ignored by Chile's previous presidents and economy prior to Allende's ascension to the Chilean presidency. The US government, as it had done in Asia and Africa, relied on a repressive and brutal containment policy to halt the spread of communism and popularity of socialism. Despite the technical and political differences between communism and socialism, they are often viewed as one in the same. One reoccurring method was using proxy war and CIA coups to overthrow leaders who were considered a threat to American influence and power in various world regions from 1930 to present. The US had supported pre Cold War coups against Latin American and Caribbean countries to maintain the Monroe Doctrine and its influences over European imperial powers in its so called "Backyard" Latin America. Fidel Castro is the only known Latin American leader to survival over hundred plus coups and proxy wars against him while other leaders were imprisoned or assissinated by counter revolutionaries often supported by the US. See Iran Contra Affair.

Chile, Allende and 1973 Coup

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Coincidental anniversaries

This year marks some unique coincidental histories and anniversaries across the world that are worth learning from.


50th March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom

50th Anniversary of the Adaption of Algerian Nation Anthem the Qassaman or Kassman (We Pledge) as the official anthem for the country

Kenya's Independence!

Creation of the Organization for African Unity the precursor to the African Union

State Terrorism against the children of Birmingham, Alabama

50th Anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's assassination

JFK Three shots that changed American History

60th Anniversary of the CIA Overthrow of Democratically elected leader Mohammed Massdesgh of Iran

The Koreas sign armistice agreement establishing their current borders, end of the Korean War (1950-1953)

Death of Josef Stalin Red Terror Life and Times of Stalin

Inauguration of World War II hero Dwight Eisenhower as President of the United States