Iraq war authorizations – Iraq War News http://iraqwarnews.net/ Mon, 09 May 2022 11:36:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://iraqwarnews.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-120x120.png Iraq war authorizations – Iraq War News http://iraqwarnews.net/ 32 32 Why the USS Wisconsin Can Claim the Crown of Greatest Battleship Ever https://iraqwarnews.net/why-the-uss-wisconsin-can-claim-the-crown-of-greatest-battleship-ever/ Mon, 09 May 2022 11:36:09 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/why-the-uss-wisconsin-can-claim-the-crown-of-greatest-battleship-ever/ The Iowa-class battleships weren’t retired that many times for one simple reason: they were the best battleships to ever sail. And the USS Wisconsin might just be the best of the best. Here is his story: USS Wisconsin (BB-64) was the third Iowa-class battleship to be built during World War II. Built at the Philadelphia […]]]>

The Iowa-class battleships weren’t retired that many times for one simple reason: they were the best battleships to ever sail. And the USS Wisconsin might just be the best of the best. Here is his story: USS Wisconsin (BB-64) was the third Iowa-class battleship to be built during World War II. Built at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, she was launched on December 7, 1943 – the second anniversary of the Pearl Harbor raid. During the war she served exclusively in the Pacific, but later would see the service that would take her around the globe.

USS Wisconsin Facts:

A fast battleship

As with her sister ships in the Iowa-class, BB-64 was designed as a “fast” battleship that blended speed and firepower, allowing it to keep pace with an aircraft carrier strike force, while remaining elegant in design to be able to travel through the Panama Canal. She displaced 45,000 tons, was just under 900 feet long, had a crew of about 1,600 men.

Sponsored by then-Wisconsin Governor’s wife Walter Goodland, its motto was “Forward for Freedom”.

well armed

Armed with a main battery 16-inch guns that could hit targets nearly twenty-four miles away with a variety of artillery shells, the Iowa-class were among the most heavily armed American military ships ever seen.

USS Wisconsin’The main battery consisted of nine 16-inch/50 caliber Mark 7 guns in three-gun turrets, which could fire 2,700-pound (1,225 kg) armour-piercing shells about 23 miles (42.6 km). The secondary batteries consisted of twenty 5-inch/38 caliber guns mounted in twin-gun dual-purpose (DP) turrets, which could hit targets up to 16.7 km away.

Second ship named for Wisconsin

BB-64 was the second battleship named for the Badger State. The first ship bearing the Wisconsin name had been BB-9, the third and last Illinois-pre-dreadnought class. BB-9 served as part of the “Great White Fleet” – the nickname for the group of US Navy battleships that made a voyage around the world from December 16, 1907 to February 22, 1909 by order of President Theodore Roosevelt.

A project Colombia-class, SSBN-827, will also be named for Wisconsin. She will be the second boat of the new class of ballistic missile submarines and should be launched in 2024.

Service after World War II

After World War II, the USS Wisconsin was briefly decommissioned, then reactivated for the Korean War, and provided naval gunfire support duties against enemy bunkers, command posts, and artillery positions. Wisconsin earned five battle stars for his service in World War II and one for the Korean War.

When she joined the US Navy’s reserve fleet – the “Mothball Fleet” – in 1958, it was the first time the US Navy had been without an active battleship since 1895.

Back to service in the decade of excess

When President Ronald Reagan called for a 600 US Navy ships in the 1980s, the four Iowa-class battleships – including BB-64 – have been revived and upgraded with new combat systems that have replaced many of the ships’ smaller five-inch guns with a Harpoon anti-ship missile launcher, thirty-two Tomahawk cruise missiles and four Phalanx close-in weapon systems (CIWS). Originally fitted with 40mm anti-aircraft guns, they were replaced during the Cold War by missiles, electronic warfare suites and Phalanx Gatling anti-missile gun systems.

Service in Desert Storm

With his sister Iowa– class battle wagon, USS Missouri (BB-63), USS Wisconsin actually used the new weapons in combat operations when she was deployed in the Persian Gulf as part of Operation Desert Storm. During the campaign, the two World War II battleships launched Tomahawk missiles at Iraqi targets and conducted naval gunnery missions to convince the Iraqi military that coalition forces would engage in an amphibious assault , immobilizing thousands of Iraqi units.

Iowa-class battleship – Image: Creative Commons.

Iowa-class

Iowa-class battleship: Image: Creative Commons.

Montana-class

Iowa-class battleship.

Montana-class

Iowa-class battleship. Image: Creative Commons.

Korean War Battleships

People gather on the beach to watch the battleship USS Missouri (BB 63) enter the channel in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii June 22, 1998. Secretary of the Navy John H. Dalton signed the donation agreement on June 4 May, allowing Missouri to be used as a museum near the Arizona Memorial. The ship was towed from Bremerton, Wash. DoD photo by Petty Officer 1st Class David Weideman, US Navy.

Disused but not scrapped

In 1991, the USS Wisconsin was decommissioned again, but with USS Iowa (BB-61), she was retained in the United States Navy Reserve Fleet pursuant to the National Defense Authorization Act of 1996 for potential use as a shore bombardment warship.

In March 2006, the Secretary of the Navy exercised authority to strike the two Naval Vessel Register (NVR) World War II combat cars. With the other Iowa-class battleships, Congress directed that while each could be converted into museums, none could be modified in a way that would impair their respective military capability. Theoretically, Wisconsin and the other Iowa-class warships could be reactivated for service should the need arise – but this is unlikely to happen.

However, this ensures that the warship can be enjoyed for years to come and serves as a lasting memorial to sailors who served on board. Today the USS Wisconsin is kept as a museum ship in Norfolk, Virginia. She is listed on the National Register of Historic Placesand remains one of the last American battleships to fire in anger.

Today’s editor for 1945, Peter Suciu is a Michigan writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites. He writes regularly on military hardware and is the author of several books on military headgear, including A gallery of military hairstyles, which is available on Amazon.com. Peter is also a Contributing author for Forbes.

]]>
Congressional votes for the week of April 29 to May 5 | News https://iraqwarnews.net/congressional-votes-for-the-week-of-april-29-to-may-5-news/ Sun, 08 May 2022 11:52:00 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/congressional-votes-for-the-week-of-april-29-to-may-5-news/ WASHINGTON Here’s a look at how members of the Congressional area voted the week before. Along with the week’s roll call votes, the Senate also passed the following measure by voice vote: The Safe Sleep for Babies Act (HR 3182), providing that infant slant sleepers and baby bumpers crib should be considered prohibited hazardous products […]]]>

WASHINGTON Here’s a look at how members of the Congressional area voted the week before.

Along with the week’s roll call votes, the Senate also passed the following measure by voice vote: The Safe Sleep for Babies Act (HR 3182), providing that infant slant sleepers and baby bumpers crib should be considered prohibited hazardous products under Section 8 of the Consumer Product Safety Act.

There was no key vote in the House this week.

SENATE VOTES:

Senate Vote 1:

CAPITAL MARKETS: The Senate confirmed the appointment of Joshua Frost as the Treasury Department’s assistant secretary for capital markets. Frost has been an official at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York since 1999, with responsibilities including oversight of money markets and Treasury debt markets. One opponent, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said, “I will be voting against his nomination out of growing concern that the Treasury Department has failed in its responsibilities to the Senate Finance Committee and its members.” The vote on May 3 was 54 yes to 42 no.

AGAINST: Paul R-KY, McConnell R-KY

Senate Vote 2:

HUD BUREAUCRACY MANAGEMENT: The Senate has confirmed the appointment of Elizabeth Bhargava as Assistant Secretary for Administration in the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Bhargava, most recently New York’s Undersecretary of Labor and Manpower, has been a New York State and City government official for more than 20 years. One supporter, Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, said Bhargava “recognizes that the continuity of the program depends on strong leadership at the top and meeting the urgent staffing needs of the department.” The vote on May 3 was 62 yes to 34 no.

AGAINST: Paul R-KY, McConnell R-KY

Senate Vote 3:

HEAD START MASKING RULE: The Senate passed a resolution (SJ Res. 39) sponsored by Sen. John Thune, R.S.D., that would oppose and rescind a Department of Health and Human Services rule requiring that face masks be worn indoors and outdoors by children and workers in Head Start programs, and requiring that Head Start workers have received the Covid vaccination. Thune said: “The scientific evidence for masking toddlers is flimsy at best. The World Health Organization does not recommend masking for children under 5. Concerns about the effect on speech and children’s development are real.” One opponent of the resolution, Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., said: “Once our youngest children can be fully immunized, it probably makes sense to revise some of these requirements, but we’re not. still there.” The vote on May 3 was 55 yes to 41 no.

FOR: Paul R-KY, McConnell R-KY

Senate Vote 4:

OIL AND NATURAL GAS LEASES: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., to instruct Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act ( HR 4521). The motion insisted on the final bill including provisions for the sale of oil and natural gas production leases on the outer continental shelf of US waters, including the Gulf of Mexico and off Alaska. Barrasso said the motion was necessary because the Biden administration failed to establish a 5-year lease plan that would increase US energy production and reduce dependence on “oil from our enemies, like the Iran and Venezuela”. One opponent, Sen. Edward Markey, D-Mass., said: ‘We need to focus on getting clean energy and efficient solutions to communities, without undermining federal processes and giving big oil companies more subsidies. .” The investigative vote on May 4 was 53 yes to 44 no.

FOR: Paul R-KY, McConnell R-KY

Senate Vote 5:

CHINA AND IRAN: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, to task Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion insisted on the final bill including provisions to fight cooperation between China and Iran with sanctions and other measures. Cruz said the provisions were necessary because “China is our most important geopolitical enemy for the next 100 years. Iran is the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism.” An opponent of the motion, Sen. Christopher Murphy, D-Conn., said: “Tying our terrorism sanctions against Iran to our policy toward China would, really, muddy the waters as to the purpose of terrorism sanctions.” The investigative vote on May 4 was 86 yes to 12 no.

AGAINST: Paul R-KY

FOR: McConnell R-KY

Senate Vote 6:

GUN RESEARCH AND CHINA: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., to instruct Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion insisted on the final bill, including provisions rejecting spending authority for the Green Climate Fund and authorizing $8 billion for military research into weapon systems that counter China. Cotton said, “Instead of giving that $8 billion to the United Nations to waste on climate programs and corruption, we should send it to our troops and help rebuild our military.” An opponent of the motion, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, DR.I., said: “Our national security and our economic advantage are both served by actually supporting the international climate fund and helping the world navigate its way through the predicament that the fossil fuel industry has been forced upon us.” The investigative vote on May 4 was 50 to 44 against.

FOR: Paul R-KY, McConnell R-KY

Senate Vote 7:

NUCLEAR PACT WITH IRAN: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., to instruct Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion emphasized the final bill, including provisions requiring a nuclear arms deal with Iran to maintain sanctions against Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and address Iran’s support to terrorism and its other malicious activities. Lankford cited Iran’s use of the Corps to attack and kill US soldiers in the Iraq war as the reason for maintaining sanctions. An opponent of the motion, Sen. Christopher Murphy, D-Conn., said, “To deny this administration the ability to make a nuclear deal is not just madness; it’s downright dangerous.” The investigative vote on May 4 was 62 yes to 33 no.

AGAINST: Paul R-KY

FOR: McConnell R-KY

Senate Vote 8:

CLIMATE CHANGE EMERGENCIES: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, RW.Va., to task Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion insisted on the final bill including provisions stating that the president cannot declare a national emergency or a public health emergency due to climate change. Capito said: “We should be fighting climate change, but ceding broad authority to the executive [branch] is not the way to go. One opponent of the motion, Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., said, “Removing the president’s ability to declare major disasters or health emergencies or national emergencies when disasters strike our people is a terrible idea. The vote to instruct on May 4 was 49 yes to 47 no.

FOR: Paul R-KY, McConnell R-KY

Senate Vote 9:

NUCLEAR POWER: The Senate has confirmed the appointment of Kathryn Huff as Deputy Secretary of the Department of Energy for Nuclear Power. Huff was a professor of nuclear engineering at the University of Illinois before joining the energy department as a senior official a year ago. One supporter, Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., said, “We must seek opportunities to expand our use of nuclear energy. Dr. Huff is ready and able to take on this responsibility.” The vote on May 5 was 80 yes to 11 no.

AGAINST: Paul R-KY, McConnell R-KY

]]>
Longmont Area Convention Votes April 29-May 5, 2022 – Longmont Times-Call https://iraqwarnews.net/longmont-area-convention-votes-april-29-may-5-2022-longmont-times-call/ Fri, 06 May 2022 18:25:54 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/longmont-area-convention-votes-april-29-may-5-2022-longmont-times-call/ Here’s a look at how members of Congress in the region voted over the past week. Along with the week’s roll call votes, the Senate also passed the following measure by voice vote: The Safe Sleep for Babies Act (HR 3182), providing that infant slant sleepers and baby bumpers crib should be considered prohibited hazardous […]]]>

Here’s a look at how members of Congress in the region voted over the past week.

Along with the week’s roll call votes, the Senate also passed the following measure by voice vote: The Safe Sleep for Babies Act (HR 3182), providing that infant slant sleepers and baby bumpers crib should be considered prohibited hazardous products under Section 8 of the Consumer Product Safety Act.

There was no key vote in the House this week.

Senate votes

FINANCIAL MARKETS: The Senate has confirmed the appointment of Joshua Frost as the Treasury Department’s assistant secretary for financial markets. Frost has been an official at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York since 1999, with responsibilities including oversight of money markets and Treasury debt markets. One opponent, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said, “I will be voting against his nomination out of growing concern that the Treasury Department has failed in its responsibilities to the Senate Finance Committee and its members.” The vote on May 3 was 54 yes to 42 no.
DON’T VOTE: Bennet D-CO
FOR: Hickenlooper D-CO

HUD BUREAUCRACY MANAGEMENT: The Senate has confirmed the appointment of Elizabeth Bhargava as Assistant Secretary for Administration in the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Bhargava, most recently New York’s Undersecretary of Labor and Manpower, has been a New York State and City government official for more than 20 years. One supporter, Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, said Bhargava “recognizes that the continuity of the program depends on strong leadership at the top and meeting the urgent staffing needs of the department.” The vote on May 3 was 62 yes to 34 no.
DO NOT VOTE: Bennet
YES: Hickenlooper

HEAD START MASKING RULE: The Senate passed a resolution (SJ Res. 39) sponsored by Sen. John Thune, RS.D., that would disapprove and rescind a Department of Health and Human Services rule requiring face masks to be worn indoors and outdoors by children and workers in Head Start programs, and demanding that Head Start workers have received the Covid vaccination. Thune said: “The scientific evidence for masking toddlers is flimsy at best. The World Health Organization does not recommend wearing a mask for children under 5 years old. Concerns about the effect on children’s speech and development are real. One opponent of the resolution, Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., said: ‘Once our youngest children can be fully immunized, it probably makes sense to revisit some of these requirements, but we’re not. still there.” The vote on May 3 was 55 yes to 41 no.
DO NOT VOTE: Bennet
CONS: Hickenlooper

OIL AND NATURAL GAS LEASES: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., to instruct Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion insisted on the final bill including provisions for the sale of oil and natural gas production leases on the outer continental shelf of US waters, including the Gulf of Mexico and off Alaska. Barrasso said the motion was necessary because the Biden administration failed to establish a 5-year lease plan that would increase US energy production and reduce dependence on “oil from our enemies, like the Iran and Venezuela”. One opponent, Sen. Edward Markey, D-Mass., Said, “We need to focus on getting clean energy and efficient solutions to communities, not undermine federal processes, and give big oil companies more subsidies. .” The investigative vote on May 4 was 53 yes to 44 no.
DO NOT VOTE: Bennet
YES: Hickenlooper

CHINA AND IRAN: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, to task Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion insisted on the final bill including provisions to tackle cooperation between China and Iran with sanctions and other measures. Cruz said the provisions were necessary because “China is our most important geopolitical enemy for the next 100 years. Iran is the number one state sponsor of terrorism in the world. One opponent of the motion, Sen. Christopher Murphy, D-Conn., said: “Tying our terrorism sanctions against Iran to our policy toward China would, really, muddy the waters as to the purpose of terrorism sanctions.” The investigative vote on May 4 was 86 yes to 12 no.
DO NOT VOTE: Bennet
YES: Hickenlooper

WEAPONS RESEARCH AND CHINA: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., to instruct Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion insisted on the final bill, including provisions rejecting spending authority for the Green Climate Fund and authorizing $8 billion for military research into weapon systems that counter China. Cotton said, “Instead of giving that $8 billion to the United Nations to waste on climate programs and corruption, we should send it to our troops and help rebuild our military.” An opponent of the motion, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, DR.I., said: “Our national security and our economic advantage are both served by really supporting the international climate fund and helping the world to find its way through the predicament that the fossil fuel industry has been imposed on us”. The investigative vote on May 4 was 50 to 44 against.
DO NOT VOTE: Bennet
CONS: Hickenlooper

NUCLEAR PACT WITH IRAN: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., to task Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion emphasized the final bill, including provisions requiring a nuclear arms deal with Iran to maintain sanctions against Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and address Iran’s support to terrorism and its other malicious activities. Lankford cited Iran’s use of the Corps to attack and kill US soldiers in the Iraq war as the reason for maintaining sanctions. An opponent of the motion, Sen. Christopher Murphy, D-Conn., said, “To deny this administration the ability to make a nuclear deal is not just madness; it’s downright dangerous. The investigative vote on May 4 was 62 yes to 33 no.
DO NOT VOTE: Bennet
CONS: Hickenlooper

CLIMATE CHANGE EMERGENCIES: The Senate passed a motion, sponsored by Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, RW.Va., to task Senate delegates with the House to negotiate both chambers’ versions of the America Competes Act (HR 4521). The motion insisted on the final bill including provisions stating that the president cannot declare a national emergency or a public health emergency due to climate change. Capito said: “We should fight climate change, but cede broad authority to the executive [branch] is not the way to go. An opponent of the motion, Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., said, “Removing the president’s ability to declare major disasters or health emergencies or national emergencies when disasters strike our people is a terrible idea.” The investigative vote on May 4 was 49 yes to 47 no.
DO NOT VOTE: Bennet
CONS: Hickenlooper

NUCLEAR ENERGY: The Senate confirmed the appointment of Kathryn Huff as Deputy Secretary of the Department of Energy for Nuclear Power. Huff was a professor of nuclear engineering at the University of Illinois before joining the energy department as a senior official a year ago. One supporter, Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., said, “We need to look for opportunities to expand our use of nuclear energy. Dr. Huff is ready and able to take on this responsibility. The vote on May 5 was 80 yes to 11 no.
DO NOT VOTE: Bennet
YES: Hickenlooper

]]>
Don’t repeat Iraq’s mistakes in Ukraine https://iraqwarnews.net/dont-repeat-iraqs-mistakes-in-ukraine/ Tue, 03 May 2022 15:48:50 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/dont-repeat-iraqs-mistakes-in-ukraine/ As concerns continue to grow over Russia’s attacks on Ukraine, Rep. Adam Kinzinger (IL-16) has responded by introducing a new Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF), which would give the President Biden the power to use force if Russia were to deploy chemical, biological or nuclear weapons. While promoting his new proposalRep. Kinzinger […]]]>

As concerns continue to grow over Russia’s attacks on Ukraine, Rep. Adam Kinzinger (IL-16) has responded by introducing a new Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF), which would give the President Biden the power to use force if Russia were to deploy chemical, biological or nuclear weapons.

While promoting his new proposalRep. Kinzinger himself mentioned “I don’t think we need to use force in Ukraine right now.” He touted his AUMF as a deterrent that would give President Biden “leverage” and “better flexibility.”

Rep. Kinzinger’s AUMF does not reflect lessons learned over the past 20 years.

Introducing an AUMF against Russia at this time, when de-escalation is critical, is a dangerous step in the wrong direction. Rather than debate escalating military action, Congress should work with the Biden administration to pursue diplomatic steps that facilitate a ceasefire and negotiations between Russia and Ukraine to end the war. conflict as soon as possible.

Representative Kinzinger’s proposal is not only premature, it is deeply flawed. The AUMF does not reflect lessons learned from the past 20 years, during which four administrations significantly expanded military operations beyond congressional intent and with minimal congressional oversight using the post-9/11 AUMF 2001 and the Iraqi AUMF of 2002. These lessons are reflected in the proposals and principles provided by many bipartisan legal experts (e.g., here, here, here, hereand here).

Representative Kinzinger’s AUMF departs from the recommendations of these experts in several respects. In particular, it lacks specificity regarding whom force may be used against and where, includes inadequate reporting requirements, and does not include an expiration date.

Although the target and geography of this conflict may seem implicit and obvious, we have learned from experience with the AUMFs of 2001 and 2002 that when an AUMF fails to name against whom force may be used and where, this makes it vulnerable to abuse of executive power. . For example, the Iraqi AUMF of 2002 was clearly aimed at authorizing force against Saddam Hussein’s regime in Iraq. However, the executive branch has since asserted that it also authorizes force against non-state groups outside Iraq, including Daesh in Syriaand most blatantly, invoked him to justify the targeted assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani.

If Rep. Kinzinger’s AUMF becomes law, it would provide a slip of authorization for this president or any future president to use force anywhere, against anyone as long as he deems it “necessary and appropriate. “to protect the national security interests of the United States with respect to Ukraine and “to restore the territorial integrity of Ukraine.

The reporting requirements of the AUMF mirror those of the 2002 Iraq AUMF, with the vague requirement for the president to submit reports to Congress every 60 days “on matters relating to this joint resolution”, including “actions taken” and “the status of planning efforts that should be necessary once these actions are completed.” To properly keep Congress and the public informed of the scope and status of America’s wars, any AUMF should include strong and specific public reporting requirements, such as those established by legal experts. here.

The United States should use all of its diplomatic influence to push for a ceasefire and end this devastating conflict.

Finally, Representative Kinzinger’s AUMF does not include an expiration or sunset date. Section 4 is incorrectly titled “Sunset”, however, it allows the President to determine when the AUMF would expire, based on when the “President certifies to Congress that the territorial integrity of Ukraine has been restored”. It is not a true temporal sunset and as such does not serve the purpose of a sunset, which is to force the President and Congress to come together, to assess the use of the force and have Congress – in accordance with its constitutional prerogative to “declare war”: decide whether to reauthorize the use of force, refine the AUMF, or let it expire. Rather than reassert congressional war powers, Rep. Kinzinger’s AUMF would further transfer those powers to the president.

At a time when de-escalation of force is desperately needed by the people of Ukraine, the United States should use all of its diplomatic influence to push for a ceasefire and end this devastating conflict. We hope members of Congress will focus on encouraging and facilitating this course, rather than engaging with this preemptive and flawed AUMF.

]]>
Reviews | Many Afghans who fled Kabul did not receive adequate support https://iraqwarnews.net/reviews-many-afghans-who-fled-kabul-did-not-receive-adequate-support/ Thu, 28 Apr 2022 15:52:16 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/reviews-many-afghans-who-fled-kabul-did-not-receive-adequate-support/ Placeholder while loading article actions The Biden administration set up a sponsorship program to help admit and support tens of thousands of Ukrainian refugees, but too many Afghan evacuees, including some who helped American troops and personnel, ended up without adequate support in this country or outright rejected. For many of the roughly 80,000 Afghans […]]]>
Placeholder while loading article actions

The Biden administration set up a sponsorship program to help admit and support tens of thousands of Ukrainian refugees, but too many Afghan evacuees, including some who helped American troops and personnel, ended up without adequate support in this country or outright rejected.

For many of the roughly 80,000 Afghans who traveled to the United States after the fall of Kabul last year, the challenges they face acclimating to a new country are increasing. Thousands more still in Afghanistan or neighboring countries have been denied entry to the United States or are waiting in limbo. Congress could help but has not.

Most of the Afghans who arrived here were flown in from Kabul during the chaotic US withdrawal last summer and then housed in temporary quarters at military bases. They have since been resettled in communities across the country, but often without the financial and logistical support normally given to refugees by the government. It’s because Afghans, including thousands who have helped our troops and risked their lives doing so for years, have not been granted refugee status – and because the Trump administration has gutted the infrastructure of resettlement of refugees.

Across the United States, dozens of private groups staffed by volunteers have shape to help. They provided funds to Afghans, as well as assistance in forming community bonds, navigating the paperwork to seek asylum and accessing government assistance. This assistance has been essential, but it is a poor substitute for systematic government assistance. Aid to some Afghan refugees has dried up, leaving them unable to pay their rent or facing eviction.

In March, the Biden administration offered Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months to Afghan refugees who had already been admitted, a designation that can and often is extended. He did so after announcing the same advantage for the Ukrainians already present. The TPS also comes with work authorization, but it does not provide any pathway to lawful permanent residence or citizenship. Without these gateways, many Afghans are effectively stateless, unable to return to their country and uncertain of their long-term prospects there.

Meanwhile, there are tens of thousands of unlucky Afghans who failed to board a flight to the United States last summer. Many remain in Afghanistan, threatened by the Taliban; others are in neighboring countries. About 45,000 have applied for humanitarian parole to come to the United States, overwhelming Washington’s processing capacity. Only a few hundred have been approved; 2,200 have been denied, while the rest remain in limbo.

This begs a question: why can’t the administration set up a program for individuals and groups based in the United States to sponsor Afghan refugees to come here, as it has done for Ukrainians? Or why can’t it streamline admissions processing for Afghans who have helped American personnel, fled their country and want to come here? After all, many are as qualified as the refugees who were admitted en masse last summer.

Congress did not decide to grant a path to citizenship for Afghan refugees, as it did for Cubans after Fidel Castro came to power, Vietnamese after the fall of Saigon, and Iraqis after the wars in Iraq of the last decades. Many Afghan refugees, having worked side by side to help Americans in a dangerous place, might now wonder if they have a future in this country.

]]>
Biden seeks broad authorization to track and destroy suspect drones https://iraqwarnews.net/biden-seeks-broad-authorization-to-track-and-destroy-suspect-drones/ Tue, 26 Apr 2022 09:54:12 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/biden-seeks-broad-authorization-to-track-and-destroy-suspect-drones/ The Biden administration has asked Congress to dramatically increase the number of government and public agencies — from federal to local governments — that are legally authorized to identify, track, and disable potentially malicious drones flying in U.S. airspace. This call for an increase in the number of public bodies and officials authorized to engage […]]]>

The Biden administration has asked Congress to dramatically increase the number of government and public agencies — from federal to local governments — that are legally authorized to identify, track, and disable potentially malicious drones flying in U.S. airspace.

This call for an increase in the number of public bodies and officials authorized to engage in trace and destroy activities against potentially hostile drones was part of a larger framework. National Action Plan for Countering Unmanned Aircraft Systems the White House released on Monday. In it, the Biden administration calls on Congress to renew existing legislation legalizing anti-UAV action by “the Departments of Homeland Security, Justice, Defense, State, as well as Central Intelligence Agency and NASA in limited situations”. It also calls for the enactment of new measures allowing local officials to take defensive action against drones they fear may not serve.

“The proposal also seeks to extend UAS detection authorities to state, local, territorial, and tribal (SLTT) law enforcement agencies and critical infrastructure owners and operators,” the plan reads. “The proposal would also create a federally-sponsored pilot program for certain SLTT law enforcement participants to perform UAS mitigation activities and allow critical infrastructure owners and operators to purchase authorized equipment. for use by appropriate Federal Law Enforcement or SLTT agencies to protect their facilities. .”

The White House says the project is the first comprehensive initiative to prepare for and respond to the use of drones for illegal or destructive domestic purposes. While he notes that the vast majority of drones are used for positive and productive purposes, he adds that drones are increasingly being used “to commit crimes, conduct unlawful surveillance and industrial espionage, and thwart law enforcement efforts.”

These operations include depositing contraband in prisons, smuggling drugs and people across the southern border, and several other types of criminal acts – including one the FBI described as an attack on a Pennsylvania power plant. Elsewhere, similar consumer drones have also been deployed in assassination attempts in Venezuela and Iraq, used by terrorist groups across the Middle East and Mexican drug cartels to drop grenades on enemy gangs. .

More recently, the use of store-bought drones in Ukraine for widely considered legitimate defensive purposes against invading Russian troops – including dropping Molotov cocktails and ammunition – has drawn attention to how the gear can be adapted for conflict purposes. Indeed, some experts believe that the effectiveness of consumer drones in Ukraine against traditional military strategies and means is causing a fundamental re-examination of how future wars will be fought.

It may also influence how US authorities plan responses to the expanding deployment of malicious domestic drones. This increase seems inevitable as the current fleet of 800 drones registered with the Federal Aviation Administration reaches a level valued 2 million by 2024.

This risk may well explain the White House’s desire to dramatically increase the number of national, state, local, and other public administrations capable of lawfully monitoring and acting against potentially hostile drones, and its call for Congress to “adopt legislation to close critical gaps in existing laws and policies that currently prevent government and law enforcement from protecting the American people and our vital security interests.


Subscribe to DroneDJ on YouTube for exclusive videos

]]>
VA unveils new plan to house homeless Los Angeles veterans, Falls Flat with advocacy groups https://iraqwarnews.net/va-unveils-new-plan-to-house-homeless-los-angeles-veterans-falls-flat-with-advocacy-groups/ Sat, 23 Apr 2022 12:20:48 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/va-unveils-new-plan-to-house-homeless-los-angeles-veterans-falls-flat-with-advocacy-groups/ On November 1, the Veterans Affairs Department and the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department teamed up to move approximately 40 homeless veterans living along a sidewalk to the property of the West Los Angeles Veterans Campus, just next to their old encampment known as Veterans Row. . At the time, VA Secretary Denis McDonough pledged to […]]]>

On November 1, the Veterans Affairs Department and the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department teamed up to move approximately 40 homeless veterans living along a sidewalk to the property of the West Los Angeles Veterans Campus, just next to their old encampment known as Veterans Row. .

At the time, VA Secretary Denis McDonough pledged to house another 500 homeless vets in the city by December 31. The department succeeded, finding refuge for 667 veterans in a city with more than 3,600 homeless vets, or about 10% of the entire country. homeless former military population.

“Once in a while you come across these phrases in English that really shouldn’t exist. I think one of those phrases is ‘homeless veteran,'” McDonough said at a press conference in November. “As long as I’m here, I’m going to do everything I can to get them into homes.”

Read more : A Texas guard disappeared while on a border mission

But after years of delays, advocates question whether the VA is committed to finding a solution to homelessness and have raised concerns about the use of the department’s large lot in Los Angeles. Sections of this property are currently leased by a local private school and university, and part of the land would be set aside for development under the VA’s new framework to address homelessness in the area.

The VA on Friday unveiled what it called the West LA VA Campus Master Plan, a roadmap to ensure all homeless veterans in the area have permanent shelter and access to services. such as VA health care, benefits and support programs.

Building on a project unveiled in 2016, the 2022 Master Plan provides for the construction of approximately 1,000 housing units over the next six years, with the intention of eventually having 1,200.

It also calls for the construction of a town square; buildings that will provide amenities for veterans, such as a wellness center with career and support services; and parking lots, walking paths and bike paths.

In this new village, formerly homeless veterans will have access to mental and physical health care and numerous services, according to VA officials, who added that the initiative could be a model for other cities.

“LA is the epicenter of homelessness, and as LA goes away, the whole nation goes away,” said Keith Harris, VA’s senior roaming officer for greater Los Angeles, during of a call to the press on Friday. “Los Angeles has…alarmingly nearly one-fifth of all homeless veterans homeless [in the country]. So we are committed to drastically reducing those numbers and providing those veterans with a place to call home. »

Still, veterans and advocacy groups are unhappy with the overall plan, which they say ignored feedback from veterans and amounts to an inappropriate use of what was originally 700 acres, given in 1887 to be “permanently maintained as a national home for disabled veterans, especially the unemployed”. Veterans.”

In a three-page letter published Friday, Dick Southern, director of the Vietnam Veterans of America chapter in the area, called the master plan a community plan that would convert the land to public parks, thoroughfares, affordable mixed-use housing, retail business. and four subway stations, in addition to providing space for drug research centers and entertainment venues – “while indefinitely delaying housing for dying disabled veterans in the best areas of Los Angeles”.

“Vietnam Veterans of America has never officially supported a master or community plan to privately redevelop the [West LA] VA Soldiers Home,” Southern wrote, referring to the area’s original name.

Currently, of those acres left to house veterans, a few hundred elderly veterans live in the state-run California Veterans Home, while the federal government leases 10 acres of the property to UCLA for a baseball field. ; a company drills oil on the land; and 22 acres are leased to a private school which has built a sports complex, according to a report earlier this month from CNN.

“It’s really disgusting to see,” Rob Reynolds, an Iraq War veteran who now advocates for homeless veterans in Los Angeles, told CNN. “When you see people who raise their right hands to serve our country sleeping and dying on the streets, and you have one of the most elite private schools in the country charging $40,000 a year per student, and that they have immaculate equipment and that the veterans are living in misery, it makes no sense.”

The VA says the blueprint will provide homeless veterans with the services and shelter they need through partnerships with developers as well as rental agreements, which help cover costs.

Dr. Steven Braverman, director of the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System, said on Friday’s call with reporters that by law the VA is not allowed to build housing “unless they be specifically tied to a treatment program” and should “rely on core developer and community assets.”

A reporter on the call asked VA officials to cite the law, but they were unable to do so, adding only that in the 1950s a home program for veterans was “cancelled by Congress and the only authorities for the use of funding were housing in support of direct care activities.

As officials decided to end the call after the question, attorney Ryan Thompson of the National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers Coalition stepped in to accuse the AV of lying.

“I’m absolutely disgusted, like so many veterans and members of the public, that you continually lie about laws that don’t exist,” Thompson said.

Earlier in the press conference, Braverman agreed that the optics of beautiful facilities like Brentwood Private School and UCLA land on property where veterans have been promised housing has a “real impact and visceral about veterans and advocates,” but, he added, “tenants are not the reason we haven’t produced housing.”

“If we could fix the barriers to housing,” Braverman said, referring to the delays the VA has faced with the project, including lengthy environmental impact assessments, historic preservation reviews, curtailment requirements and funding challenges from developers, “we could build all the units we’ve promised without leases coming into play.”

VA officials said that by the end of 2022, the region will have 235 “permanent housing beds” for veterans and another 315 by the end of 2024.

— Patricia Kime can be reached at Patricia.Kime@Military.com. Follow her on Twitter @patriciakime.

Related: Number of Veterans Living in Homeless Shelters Has Decreased During Pandemic, Report Says

Show full article

© Copyright 2022 Military.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

]]>
#BTColumn – The Goose and the Gander https://iraqwarnews.net/btcolumn-the-goose-and-the-gander/ Wed, 20 Apr 2022 20:37:14 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/btcolumn-the-goose-and-the-gander/ Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author(s) do not represent the official position of Barbados TODAY. by Lenrod Nzulu Baraka In November 2017, Fatou Bensouda, an ICC prosecutor, requested authorization to open an investigation into alleged war crimes in Afghanistan. Prosecutor Bensouda did not specify any nation as the subject of the investigation. […]]]>

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author(s) do not represent the official position of Barbados TODAY.

by Lenrod Nzulu Baraka

In November 2017, Fatou Bensouda, an ICC prosecutor, requested authorization to open an investigation into alleged war crimes in Afghanistan.

Prosecutor Bensouda did not specify any nation as the subject of the investigation. All parties involved in the conflict in Afghanistan would be investigated to determine whether war crimes had been committed by any of the parties involved.

Although not specifically mentioned as a target of the proposed investigation, the US State Department immediately retaliated against the ICC. The United States has announced that it will revoke or deny visas to ICC members involved in the proposed investigations.

Then-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo added that his government was prepared to impose economic sanctions on ICC members if investigations into the United States and its allies were launched.

The United States’ response to the ICC’s investigative proposals expresses with singular clarity the contempt of the United States and its allies for multinational and international organizations.

Not only is the United States not a member of the ICC, but The Hague Invasion Act authorizes the United States federal government to take appropriate measures to protect the United States military and other elected and appointed personnel from the US government against criminal prosecution by the ICC.

The United States and its allies can therefore act with impunity by launching special military operations in any country of their choice. The citizens of Libya, Iraq, and Afghanistan have horrific stories to tell of the collateral damage inflicted on civilians during US-led military operations in those countries.

Like the deity portrayed in Jewish and Christian scripture, the United States and its allies can do no wrong, even when the evidence overwhelmingly points to wrongdoing.

The impunity with which some nations can act raises haunting questions about the power of international organizations that seem only able to exercise their authority over militarily and economically weak nations.

The disregard for the authority of international organizations by the United States and its allies has only undermined confidence in these organizations. Pope Francis has publicly declared that the United Nations is powerless. This admission by Pope Francis is a stark reminder that the current world order is not fair and needs major reform.

If the world wants to call the conflict in Ukraine an invasion, then the world must also be prepared to call US and NATO military operations in Libya, Iraq and Afghanistan invasions as well.

If the world wants to call President Putin a war criminal and a butcher, the same must be said of the American and NATO leaders who are responsible for what is euphemistically called collateral damage during invasions of sovereign nations. .

The United States and its allies must be held to the same moral and ethical standards applied to the rest of the international community.

India, Russia and China are in the best position to create a breach in the current world order and exert the pressure necessary to force the United States and its allies to conform to the norms agreed within the international community. The war in Ukraine is an object lesson that what’s good for the goose is also good for the gander.

The United States may have dropped the first atomic bomb on another country, but the United States is not the only country capable of unleashing nuclear engineering.

The US quest to maintain its unipolar hegemonic global control, if left unchecked, will ultimately drive the world to the precipice of destruction.

The world can dodge the nuclear bullet in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, but it is highly unlikely that nuclear weapons will not be fired in a war between China and the United States.

Lenrod Nzulu Baraka is the founder of the Afro-Caribbean Spiritual Teaching Center.

Read our ePaper. Fast. Factual. Free.

Sign up and stay up to date with Barbados FREE latest news.

]]>
America’s Empire Strikes Back: Russia Takes the Blow, China Lives in Fear https://iraqwarnews.net/americas-empire-strikes-back-russia-takes-the-blow-china-lives-in-fear/ Mon, 18 Apr 2022 13:12:09 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/americas-empire-strikes-back-russia-takes-the-blow-china-lives-in-fear/ This is reality, not a conspiracy. It is to look comparatively at one’s position in relation to others and to assess where one stands. by John Stanton Russia and China are no match for the instruments of national power of the United States. The existence of the Pale Blue Dot is threatened if nuclear weapons […]]]>

This is reality, not a conspiracy. It is to look comparatively at one’s position in relation to others and to assess where one stands.

by John Stanton

Russia and China are no match for the instruments of national power of the United States. The existence of the Pale Blue Dot is threatened if nuclear weapons are employed by either or both parties.

***

US military, political and economic support for Ukraine has little to do with genuine concern for the lives of the Ukrainian people. They are just cannon fodder for the larger goal of ensuring that there will not be a multipolar world that undermines American power or seriously challenges the hegemony of the American dollar as it is today. today. In addition, the United States, as an Empire, with a capital E, seeks to continue to expand its military alliances through the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), forcing the United States competing nations to avoid state-sponsored violence against US NATO allies. It seems likely that NATO will continue to expand with Sweden and Finland expected to sign next, and NATO’s expansion beyond Europe to include countries in Asia is already well underway.

Nikkei Asia reported on April 8, 2022 that “NATO members agreed on Thursday to increase ‘practical and political cooperation’ with Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea, in response to China’s failure to condemn Russia’s war in Ukraine. “We have agreed to intensify cooperation with our partners in the Asia-Pacific, as the crisis has global ramifications,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told a press conference, concluding two days meetings of foreign ministers of the military alliance. The four Asia-Pacific countries have been invited to attend the NATO gathering in Brussels. China’s reluctance to condemn Russia and Beijing ‘join[ing] Moscow’s questioning the right of nations to choose their own path “represents “a serious challenge for all of us,” Stoltenberg said.

Big hit: beat Russia and China

The year 2022 will be seen as a time when the United States of America – after suffering an embarrassing military defeat in Afghanistan; military and political setbacks in Iraq, Libya and Syria; leveling cities in Iraq and Syria in pursuit of ISIS (eg Al Raqqa with the killing of thousands of civilians in the process); and succumbing to a powerful political lobby (Israel) that seeks to thwart a peace process with Iran – has decided to hide in a barn with Russia and China and crush their vision of an alternative monetary system and of a center of power to challenge the United States.

The game is on, well underway.

At home, the US scene is plagued by high inflation, supply chain issues, 1 million deaths linked to the COVID pandemic and a political divide that sees 73 million supporters of the former President Donald Trump claiming the man to run for president in 2024. President Joe Biden appears to be visibly mentally degrading as footage of him seeking to shake hands with people who aren’t there, wandering aimlessly after speeches and dangerously straying from the script, causing people to wonder who, really, is in charge of foreign and domestic affairs.

Yet with all its internal and external woes, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk are getting richer, the nuclear triad is modernizing, the Pentagon’s budget exceeds $1 trillion (with all its subsidiaries), and social welfare programs continue to fail. be reduced, all the time the stock market finds ways to profit from the Russia-Ukraine conflict and various global sufferings.

This is reality, not a conspiracy. It is to look comparatively at one’s position in relation to others and to assess where one stands. Americans like to think it’s always morning in America. It’s not. History, current affairs, global perceptions, all of this must be studied to get an idea of ​​current events and to try to better guess those to come. This is not “whataboutism” as many like to claim.

Smart money relies on the United States to pull off this new vision quest: knocking Russia and China down several notches. Indeed, the United States possesses Instruments of National Power (INP) that together no nation or group of states can successfully challenge. Oh, there may be a debacle in Vietnam or Afghanistan from time to time, but those are setbacks, not defeats, in the minds of American political, military, and economic leaders.

PNI

The INPs are: Diplomacy, Information, Military, Economics, Finance, Law Enforcement, Intelligence, and People (or Human Capital) – DIMEFLIP for short. It is absolutely essential to understand the breadth of these tools which, taken alone, are powerful enough, but together have not been matched in recent times. INPs should be studied by critics and promoters to understand how the United States wields its power both abroad and domestically. They can be found on the World Wide Web as appendices to US Army Special Forces Unconventional Warfare, 2008, publication 3.05-130. Find them and read them carefully.

The United States employs most of its INPs in the Russia-Ukraine conflict. An aggressive diplomacy bringing together a large part of the nations of the world to sanction and condemn Russia. Superb use of the information realm, especially Military Information Support Operations (MISO) to shape global and American opinion to uncritically support Ukraine. Partial use of military power to provide Ukraine with advisers, training and weapons. Economics and finance INPs used to cut Russia off from SWIFT and impose punitive sanctions, as well as encouraging US defense contractors to increase arms production specifically for the ‘Ukraine. The intelligence services were used to conduct ISR airborne operations around Ukraine’s borders to spy on Russian troop and weapon movements, as well as CIA agents on the ground. Law enforcement used to threaten Russian President Putin with war crimes or extradite Julian Assange to the United States, or claim legal authority for torture, false imprisonment or war. Finally, people or human capital as citizens, or aliens, are needed to fight and die, build weapons, support wars, and believe in the American way of life and exceptionalism.

Nuclear weapons, you say? Well, the US has a first use policy but doesn’t talk about it like Russia does. According to Armscontrolcenter.org, “Current US policy does not limit the President’s ability to order a nuclear strike for any reason at any time. The military can reject an order that is perceived to violate the laws of war, and there are legal concerns about the role of Congress authorizing the use of force, but overall the president can throw weapons nuclear when and if he/she chooses to do so.

China: everything speaks

China talks a good game supporting Russia in the media, buying up its resources and companies, but it refuses to intervene militarily and fight to enter the fight. Russia bears the full burden of the larger goal of creating an alternative world order to that of the United States that includes the BRICs, a non-dollar-denominated universe and a counterbalance to American power. Russia’s hand was forced by America’s NATO push into Ukraine, but that now seems to be a distant memory as World War III looms, and the exact causes should be left to historians.

Nobody can predict where Russia will lead against Ukraine and USA/NATO. Russia’s early combat operations in Ukraine, as reported by the pro-Russian sites Southfront and the Coronation Vineyard, left much to be desired, but the authors of those sites believe that Russia will adapt quickly.

We end with the famous astronomer Dr. Carl Sagan and an excerpt from the Pale Blue Dot (PBD), the PBD being the Earth seen from a Voyager satellite four billion kilometers away.

“Earth is a tiny stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood shed by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they might become momentary masters of a fraction of a point. Think of the endless cruelties inflicted by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the barely distinguishable inhabitants of another corner, the frequency of their misunderstandings, their desire to kill each other, the fervor of their hatreds … Our postures, our imagined self-importance, the illusion that we have a privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a solitary blot in the great enveloping cosmic darkness. In our darkness, in all this vastness, there is no indication that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

]]>
Why human rights experts condemn Boris Johnson’s asylum plan https://iraqwarnews.net/why-human-rights-experts-condemn-boris-johnsons-asylum-plan/ Fri, 15 Apr 2022 17:30:55 +0000 https://iraqwarnews.net/why-human-rights-experts-condemn-boris-johnsons-asylum-plan/ Beginning in 2001, the Australian government sent thousands of incoming asylum seekers to the remote Pacific countries of Papua New Guinea, Manus Island and Nauru. There, while waiting in squalid detention centers for resettlement decisions, migrants, including children, suffered human rights violations. Now aid groups fear history will repeat itself as the UK begins its […]]]>

Beginning in 2001, the Australian government sent thousands of incoming asylum seekers to the remote Pacific countries of Papua New Guinea, Manus Island and Nauru. There, while waiting in squalid detention centers for resettlement decisions, migrants, including children, suffered human rights violations.

Now aid groups fear history will repeat itself as the UK begins its own policy of relocating migrants, on the grounds of ending dangerous trafficking routes, including across the Channel by boat. Explicitly citing the Australian example as “successful”, the UK plans to redirect some asylum seekers 4,000 miles south to Rwanda – a move some human rights observers say could also affect Ukrainian refugees fleeing the war.

On Thursday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the UK-Rwanda Partnership on Migration, a plan to force the country to send inbound migrants to Rwanda, part of a new package designed to ease alleged pressures on the UK asylum system while boosting Rwandan economic development. The government justified it as a humane way to combat dangerous and illegal human trafficking. ‘Anyone arriving in the UK illegally may be eligible,’ the official Home Office factsheet reads, adding that those who can afford to pay for smuggling routes are by definition not eligible. asylum seekers in need and are security “economic migrants”. countries.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson delivers a speech at Lydd Airport on April 14, 2022 in Dover, England. The UK government has announced it will process people seeking asylum in Britain 4,500 miles away in Rwanda in a bid to crack down on unauthorized migration. [Photo: Matt Dunham/WPA Pool/Getty Images]

But human rights experts immediately decried the plan, arguing it will not solve the alleged problem and downgrades the UK’s position on the world stage. “It’s definitely a very cruel, unethical and inhumane arrangement,” says Emily McDonnella refugee advocate at Human Rights Watch UK She says the rhetoric about economic migrants is a myth, citing that two-thirds of people crossing the English Channel are granted asylum due to legitimate cases. By the very definition of asylum, there are no illegal asylum seekers. As other countries, including Denmark, consider similar ‘outsourcing’ policies, experts fear the UK’s plan could trigger a “race to the bottom” and encourage similar initiatives in other countries.

This model of “migrant relocation” is not unprecedented. The Australian version sparked an international outcry, as seen by human rights groups several cases of abuse, sexual threats and assaults, and self-harm and suicides due to continued detention and dire conditions; 51% of abuse reported to Naura involved children. Prior to that, the United States relocated Haitian immigrants to Guantanamo Bay, beginning in 1991.

Last year, Denmark, which has taken a particularly tough stance against refugees – and has tried to send some back to Syria – has approved a bill that would allow the relocation of asylum seekers to countries outside the EU. She also signed a memorandum of understanding with Rwanda to explore a possible agreement. And just this week there have been echoes of this pattern of shifting accountability in the United States as Governor of Texas. Greg Abbott started sending undocumented migrants in Washington, DC, in chartered buses.

While most people seeking asylum in the UK come from Iran; Iraq; Eritrea, in northeast Africa; Syria; and Albania, McDonnell thinks individuals fleeing war from Ukraine could also suffer the same fate. The UK has not abolished visa requirements for Ukrainians, and there has been significant delays in their treatment. Steve Valdez-Symonds, refugee and migrant rights director at Amnesty International UK, agrees the policy could, in theory, apply to Ukrainian asylum seekers. “Given that Ukrainian visa programs are not working, this is a real possibility,” he said by email.

Any asylum seeker who arrives in the UK after January 1 without prior authorization will be subject to screening. If officials think they are from a ‘safe country’ and find them inadmissible to the UK, they could be sent back to the country they came from or to Rwanda. Once there, Rwandan officials will process their application and, if deemed “in real need”, will be allowed to settle in the country. From now on, there will be no cap on the number of people transferred and the first flights will depart in the coming months. In 2021, more than 24,000 asylum seekers entered UK detention centres, a 65% increase on 2020.

Johnson called the £120 million ($157 million) program an “innovative approach driven by our shared humanitarian impulse and made possible by Brexit freedoms.” He claimed his wider aim was to deter human trafficking, which he said turns the English Channel into an “aquatic graveyard”.

A group of people thought to be migrants are brought to Dover, Kent, on board the Border Force Searcher vessel following a small boating incident in the English Channel. Boris Johnson has put the Navy in charge of the Channel, while he defended plans to send some asylum seekers, who make the crossing in small boats, to Rwanda. Picture date: Thursday April 14, 2022. [Photo: Gareth Fuller/PA Images/Getty Images]

Touting its own deal, the UK has applauded Rwanda’s handling of migrants, citing 130,000 people it has resettled from the Democratic Republic of Congo and Burundi. Human Rights Watch says otherwise., alleging that under his authoritarian government, “torture in official and unofficial detention centers is rife”. In 2018, Rwandan police killed 11 Congolese refugees for protesting food ration cuts. McDonnell points to a key irony: “The UK grants asylum to Rwandans fleeing Rwanda” just last year, she says. “How can you send people to a country that [has] a human rights record that the UK itself has criticized? »

For the Rwandan government, the agreement aligns with its Vision 2050 objective, an economic development proposal under which Rwanda intends to become a middle-income country by 2035 and a high-income country by 2050. According to Rwandan media Kigali Today PressUK investments will contribute to some of the plan’s goals, including skills training, support for small businesses and climate-resilient policies, all of which are meant to benefit both Rwandans and asylum seekers.

But McDonnell says once in Rwanda, asylum seekers will be left in “a state of uncertainty”. They will be housed in detention centers in Kigali, the first of which Sky News reported has a communal dining hall, 12 toilets and 5 showers for approximately 100 people, who will reside in 12 x 12 foot rooms. They will apparently stay for three months while their cases are processed (although in Australia some have stayed for years). “These people will never have the chance to come to the UK and seek protection,” McDonnell said.

The plan is likely to face legal challenges, as Australia’s did, due to human rights violations, including the right to life, degrading treatment and arbitrary detention. “Detention and treatment abroad in this form is appalling, no matter where they are,” McDonnell says. “It goes against the spirit of the Refugee Law, which says we should all share responsibility for refugees, instead of just pushing them to other countries.

]]>