16 Sep 2014
Germany charged a 93-year-old former member of the Nazi Waffen-SS on Monday with at least 300,000 counts of accessory to murder over his time at the Auschwitz death camp.
The charges relate to the around 425,000 people believed to have been deported to the camp in occupied Poland between May and July 1944, at least 300,000 of whom were killed in the gas chambers.The accused helped remove the luggage of victims so that it was not seen by new arrivals, said prosecutors in the northern city of Hanover.
"The traces of the mass killing of concentration camp prisoners were thereby supposed to be covered for subsequent inmates," prosecutors said in a statement. Prosecutors said the accused was aware that the predominantly Jewish prisoners deemed unfit to work "were murdered directly after their arrival in the gas chambers of Auschwitz".
A regional court must now decide whether the accused will go on trial. The German office investigating Nazi war crimes last year sent files on 30 former Auschwitz personnel to state prosecutors with a recommendation to bring charges against them. The renewed drive to bring to justice the last surviving perpetrators of the Holocaust follows a 2011 landmark court ruling.
13 Sep 2014
As the Islamic State group continues to wreak havoc across Syria and Iraq, the group has become synonymous with extreme religious zealotry. Yet the militant group ironically has strong alliances with members of former dictator Saddam Hussein's Baath regime and its highest ranks are filled with former Saddam loyalists. "Baathism is fundamentally a secular, pan-Arab movement, which the pan-Islamist movements have been at odds with for decades. This is not a natural alliance," Brian Fishman, a counterterrorism expert at the New America Foundation, told The WorldPost.
While the Islamic State, formerly known as ISIS or ISIL, wants to create a religious regime across national borders, the Baathists want to reassert the power they had before the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq. But they both claim to champion Sunni interests in opposition to former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's autocratic and sectarian leadership. The pragmatic alliance has been a major force in helping the Islamic State achieve its goals. When the group seized a string of cities in Iraq earlier this year, it was the former generals of Saddam's army who provided much of the military expertise.
The Islamic State's extremism, however, is now causing rifts in the alliance, with Baathist and Islamic State fighters competing for dominance. In July, a group of former Saddam followers released a statement denouncing the persecution of minorities, which served to distance the group from the Islamic State's tactics, analysts told Foreign Policy. And in late August, the news site Niqash reported that Sunni militia and tribal leaders were plotting to wrest control of the city of Fallujah from their Islamic State allies and roll back the group's extremist mandates.
11 Sep 2014
Illegal loggers have long invaded areas of the Amazon rainforest. Tired of what they say is a lack of sufficient government assistance, the Ka’apor Indians feel it is time to take matters into their own hands. The tribe sent out their best warriors to hunt down loggers and drive them off their land.
The Ka'apor Indians are the legal inhabitants and caretakers of the territory along with four other tribes. Together, they have set up monitoring camps in the areas that are being illegally exploited.
8 Sep 2014
Song by Woody Guthrie. Refers to the violent deaths of 20 people, 11 of them children, during an attack by the Colorado National Guard on a tent colony of 1,200 striking coal miners and their families in Ludlow, Colorado on April 20, 1914
7 Sep 2014
Two female filmmakers have released a video documenting what it's like for a woman to walk by herself down a bustling street in Cairo, Egypt. The blatant stares from many of the men encountered along the way highlight the country's problem of rampant street harassment.
"Today we will be filming what it's like to walk down the busiest bridge in Cairo as a girl," says American-born filmmaker Colette Ghunim, introducing the short clip, above. From that point on there are no more words spoken -- just the leering gazes from almost every man Ghunim walks by.
3 Sep 2014
30 Aug 2014
Fascinating insight in to Iraq in the 1950s. The country is steeped in a rich history and culture. The very beginnings of civilisation started here and where man began cultivating the land and where writing was conceived. It even used to be a tourist hot spot.
26 Aug 2014
25 Aug 2014
22 Aug 2014
21 Aug 2014
Tyke was an African elephant at a travelling circus in the US who had been abused for years. Like most elephants in circuses, her life consisted of endless beatings and constant confinement.
Eventually, she snapped.
On 20 August, 1994, she was forced to perform in Honolulu. This is what happened next.
Warning: upsetting footage
Tyke’s rampage killed her trainer and injured 13 other people. She collapsed and died after being shot nearly 100 times.
Animals do not deserve to live and die as Tyke did – abused, mentally and physically, until they go mad from the frustration, loneliness and pain.