Friday, February 20, 2015

Blog #3: Iraq's UN Ambassador Says IS Fighters Are Committing Genocide

On Tuesday the 17th, Iraq’s U.N. Ambassador claimed that Islamic State militants were committing genocide. This statement was made a day before an emergency Security Council session, calling on the recent extremist massacre murdering 21 Christian Egyptians in Libya. As stated by Mohamed Ali Al-Hakim, a high-ranking Shiite ayatollah, “These terrorist groups have desecrated all human values. They have committed the most heinous criminal terrorist acts against the Iraqi people, whether Shi'ite, Sunni, Christians, Turkmen, Shabak or Yazidis. These are, in fact, crimes of genocide committed against humanity that must be held accountable before international justice." This was said in response to the charred remains of dozens of people found in the town Al-Baghdadi in Iraq, a town that recently came under Islamic state control. Countries whose citizens are being killed, like Jordan and Egypt, both called for an emergency intervention and international attention. The President of Egypt Abdel Fattah el-Sissi states, "What happened is a hateful crime against humanity, not only against Egyptians. I address this message here to Europeans and the French in particular," he said. "I said it to the French president four months ago when I met him: Watch out — what's happening in Libya will transform the country into a breeding ground that will threaten the entire region, not just Egypt, but Egypt, the Mediterranean basin and Europe." With publicized videos of beheadings and intense propaganda, it is evident that the militant group are aspiring to confront Christianity, warning “all crusaders” that the group aimed to "conquer" Rome, long the geographic nexus of European Christianity and a launching point for the medieval Crusades in the Holy Land. With the struggle to mediate, parallel governments, and warring militias, Libya is struggling to gain stability and control. Further there is a constant power struggle and a sense of lawlessness that has been felt for the past four years. The U.N. human rights chief called, on Tuesday, for Libyans to overcome this rehabilitating political division in order to unite against Islamist extremism, and further, protect international relations.

In comparison to my previous blogs, I believe this article illustrates a reoccurring theme as far as the goal of genocide. All though there is hatred, Antisemitism, and prejudice rooted in most acts of genocide, I find that most of the time the intention is solely rooted in an overriding want or need for political power and control. The problem is, however, when this aspiration is harnessed through war crimes and massacres, turning wars into genocides and dilemmas into lives lost. 

Jordanna Gisser
February 20, 2015
11:01 PM

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