Despite numerous denials by both the Chechen and Russian Government it has been revealed that the powerful speaker of the Chechen parliament Magomed Daudov personally oversaw the torture of gay men during a violent anti-gay purge in the Russian republic early this year, according to evidence presented in a new report by the Human Rights Watch (HRW).
Most of the detainees interviewed by HRW after their release said they had overheard their jailers referring to Magomed Daudov and the orders he issued about violence against gay men.
Second only to Kadyrov among powerful Chechen officials, Daudov goes by the name of “Lord” and is an easily recognizable figure. Three former detainees also told HRW they had seen him at the prisons where they were being held and tortured.
All of the victims said they had suffered repeated beatings with security officials kicking them with booted feet, hitting them with polypropylene pipes and sticks and forcing other inmates to participate in the violence.
Most of the detainees interviewed by HRW after their release said they had overheard their jailers referring to Magomed Daudov, the speaker of the Chechen parliament, and to orders he allegedly issued about violence against gay men.
Torturers also used electrocution devices to administer shocks to victims until they fainted from the pain. “When you come to your senses they start all over again,” one former detainee told HRW. “And once they’re done with you and you get your bearings, you hear other inmates screaming, and the sounds of torture are just there all day and, at some point, you start losing your mind.”
Many of those who have been released have fled Chechnya, but still face the risk of being hunted down and persecuted by Chechen law enforcers.
The Chechen parliament has once again denied the claims, saying reports about the persecution of gays in the region could not be taken seriously. “We don’t care what journalists working in Europe write about,” it said in a statement on Friday.
Tea Party wingnuts went insane this afternoon thinking that Florida’s St. Lucie County in FL failed to finish their court-ordered recount by today’s noon deadline, prompting Patrick Murphy’s campaign to claim final victory over Rep. Allen West.
Crazed GOP West supporters stormed into the St. Lucie election office screaming, “Count our votes!” While West’s lawyers raced to a judge’s office to demand an injunction against the state deadline all for nothing as St. Lucie election officials are saying that the deadline was met and that Patrick Murphy actually gained votesin the recount.
Under Florida law, the final certified results were due from all of the state’s 67 supervisors of elections today. If the results do not arrive on time, the certified unofficial results submitted last Sunday stand. Those results have Murphy winning by 0.58 percent. A spread of less than 0.5 percent would have triggered an automatic recount. “Today at noon, it became clear Patrick Murphy will be officially certified as the next congressman from the 18th Congressional District,” Anthony Kusich, Murphy for Congressman campaign manager, said in a prepared statement issued around 12:40 p.m. “The voters have spoken and Patrick Murphy is once again the clear winner. It is beyond time to put this campaign behind us and put the interests of the people of the Treasure Coast and Palm Beaches first.”
Murphy campaign senior advisor Eric Johnson was quick to reaffirm victory. “As far as we’re concerned, this puts an end to it,” Johnson said. “The West people demanded a recount. They got that retabulation and Patrick Murphy gained a margin of 242 votes. “This election is over,” Johnson added. Mowery said the final count was 65,841 votes for Murphy and 52,704 for West.
This may signal the end for Alan West. But Florida is still and will remain to be the laughingstock of the country when it comes to voting regulations and voters rights.
Charles Taylor, the former president of Liberia and one-time business partner of televangelist Pat Robertson, has been found guilty in an international courts of war crimes, including crimes against humanity.
Pat Robertson had lobbied the first Bush administration on Taylor’s behalf in order to gain the rights to gold mines controlled by Taylor’s war lords in Liberia. Taylor testified that Robertson had indeed been his main political ally in the United States and according to pilots that worked for Robertson’s Operation Blessings, planes that Robertson told 700 Club viewers were ferrying Christian relief supplies to genocide victims in Rwanda were in fact carrying mining equipment to Liberia.
Taylor’s trial lasted five years, during which the court heard a catalog of horrific acts committed by rebels whom Taylor helped arm in Sierra Leone’s civil war. The war ended in 2002 after more than a decade of fighting and more than 50,000 deaths. The rebels backed by Taylor became particularly known for hacking off the limbs of their perceived enemies and carving words onto their bodies. They also recruited children to fight and terrorized the civilian population through rape, looting and burning down homes. Crucial to their campaign were the weapons they bought from Taylor and paid for with what came to be known as “conflict” or “blood” diamonds, because of their role in fueling conflict in Africa.
Taylor’s ex-wife, who is now a member of the Liberian Senate, has proposed a death penalty for homosexuality.
The International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Campaign has released an alert that it is receiving reports from Iraq of a new wave of targeted killings and violence against individuals who are perceived to be gay or lesbian.
According to Iraqi human rights activists, in early February 2012, an unidentified group posted death threats against “the adulterous individuals” in the pre-dominantly Shiite neighborhoods of Baghdad and Basra. The threats gave the individuals, whose names and ages were listed, four days to stop their behavior or else face the wrath of God, and were to be carried out by the Mujahedin. According to sources inside Iraq, as the result of this new surge of anti-gay violence close to 40 people have been kidnapped, brutally tortured and murdered. The Iraqi authorities have neither responded to this targeted violence nor have they publically denounced it. It is widely believed that these atrocities are being committed by a group of the Shiite militia.
Yep it sure was a great idea to replace the secular non existent threat with that fundamentalist religious extremist mess. But hey we brought them our democracy after all didn’t we?
So seriously fucked up.
Why did we go there? Why did we stay there? What did we get there? What did we gain there? What did we give there? What did we bleed for?
George Bush’s daddy issues and Dick Cheney’s Haliburton greed.