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About the AuthorRich Robinson is the CEO and publisher of Rise News. He is also a journalist and a native of Miami. Robinson graduated from the University of Alabama and can be followed on Twitter @RichRobMiami.
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The president of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte has become an internationally known figure in a remarkably short amount of time.
Oh course, so has Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
While only being in office for 253 days (as of March 10, 2017) Duterte has become an alarmingly important figure in global politics due to his awful human rights record and a penchant for bucking the status quo.
Some, including Duterte himself, have even started calling him by a new name- dictator.
Duterte was recently quoted as saying, “I will be a dictator against all bad guys, evil, I will do it at the cost of my position or my life. I won’t stop. That’s a solemn commitment.”
The world should probably start listening to him.
Human Rights Watch, an American-founded international non-governmental organization that conducts research and advocacy on human rights, believes that Duterte may have committed crimes against humanity by, “inciting killings during his bloody antidrug campaign.”
Crimes against humanity aren’t something to scoff at, and it certainly isn’t something to take lightly.
Other high-profile political people who have been indicted for crimes against humanity include the now dead Muammar Gaddafi, and Bashar al-Assad, the current President of war-torn Syria.
Some people might look at what Duterte is doing for his country as an act of patriotism.
His stated goal is to rid his country of drug lords, their dealers, and anyone who is addicted to drugs.
Of course he is not creating massive amounts of new treatment facilities or encouraging other public health fixes, instead he is literally telling people to murder those who abuse drugs.
So has he already crossed the line from democratically elected leader to dictator?
The answer is obviously yes.
No one would argue against the fact that drugs and the trafficking of drugs are a global issue that has had disastrous ramifications for so many communities, but Duterte’s policy of slaughtering his own people in the name of reform cannot be tolerated by the people of the Philippines or the international community.
In the short time span of Duterte’s presidency, thousands of people have been killed by police or vigilantes, and the killings will only continue if no one is willing to speak up and demand a stop to an unjust judicial system.
The reason that many developing countries look to the west for a guiding hand in the building of their countries is for our rule of law.
A belief that all individuals are innocent until proven guilty in a court of justice.
The people of the Philippines are not being given this fundamental human right, and they are suffering in silence.
The principle of human rights is universal, and it is the basis for all democracies.
What Duterte, a democratically elected official, has done is spit in the face of democracy.
He has turned around and made the Philippines his own personal killing field, and “his people” are the targets.
The saddest part about the current situation in the Philippines is that by Philippine law, the president has immunity from prosecution while in office.
What this means to the rest of the world is that it is now our solemn duty to hold Duterte and his cronies responsible for their systematic attack against the civilian population.
The International Criminal Court and the U.N. have an obligation to launch an expedient investigation into this matter and stop these policies from continuing.
How many more people must die from extrajudicial killings before the rest of the world opens their eyes and sees Rodrigo Duterte for what he truly is: a malicious dictator?
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in the world. You can write for us.Post Views: 817
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A 19 year old Palestinian woman was shot and killed by a Israeli solider on the eve of Rosh Hashanah in Hebron, a city in the West Bank.
The Israeli Defense Force announced the shooting via Twitter.
BREAKING: Palestinian attempts to stab soldier at military position in Hebron. Forces responded with fire at the attacker & identified hit.
— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) September 22, 2015
According to multiple media reports, Hadeel al-Hashlamun was a student but it is unclear what exactly led to the shooting- although Israeli officials say that al-Hashlamun was trying to stab a soldier.
The shooting comes on the heels of a failed terrorist attack a few hours earlier in Hebron.
“A Palestinian militant died when a bomb he was trying to throw at Israeli forces blew up near the West Bank city of Hebron overnight, officials from both sides said on Tuesday, as tension mounted on the eve of the Jewish Yom Kippur fast day.”
Watch: A video showing the aftermath of the shooting of Hadeel al-Hashlamun.
This is a developing story.
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Cover Photo Credit: Youth Against Settlements/ FacebookPost Views: 400
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By Matthew Alvarez
MIAMI, FL- You wouldn’t know at first glance walking throughout Miami Dade College’s Kendall campus that the next potential leaders of the free world were about to arrive.
Other than a seemingly higher presence of police officers and little bit more traffic, the clues were subtle.
Students casually walked to and from their classes, people studied around tables and benches, nothing truly unusual.
It wasn’t until you headed out to the front of the campus – literally all the way into the sidewalk off of 104th St that you were able get a taste of the energy surrounding tonight’s significance.
Florida has been a notorious swing state over the last couple of presidential elections. This has to do with the fact that South Florida (Liberal) has a completely different political culture than North Florida (Conservative) and Central (Moderate).
For Democrats, one of the most important differences in South Florida is the large population of young voters that have an ethic connection to one of the dozens of different Latin and Hispanic ethnicities, something that both Democratic candidates want to capitalize off of.
So far, it looks like Hillary is winning that fight.
In a Washington Post poll released on March 9th, Hillary Clinton led Bernie Sanders 68% to 21% among Hispanic Democrats in the Sunshine State. Among all Democratic voters in the state, she leads 64% to 24%.
With all this being said, it’s no coincidence that one of the hottest issues from the Miami debate was immigration policy.
Over half the population of the city of Miami are immigrants or are the literal children of immigrants.
The stakes are high as Sanders and Clinton play tug of war with Florida’s diverse electorate ahead of the March 15th primary election.
For such a large scale event at a college campus, the turnout wasn’t as huge as you would expect, but the lack of participants was made up for in passion.
The size of the rally fluctuated from a few hundred people to a few dozen by the time the debate started at 9:00 PM; at its peak the crowd spanned about two blocks.
There wasn’t a single person not chanting, or yelling in many cases, for their respective candidates.
A small group of Clinton supporters had left the area earlier in the evening, leaving it as an nearly exclusive unofficial Sanders rally.
As heavy rush hour traffic slowly drove on by, protesters urged drivers to honk in support, creating a symphony of loud cheers and car horns that could be heard from the other side of the campus.
Spirits were high across the entire crowd.
Jamie Friend, being a mid-aged activist, felt optimistic about the rejuvenating spirit that Sanders has brought to the electorate.
Friend transformed recycled Styrofoam into light up boxes that spelled out “Bernie”, activated by the flashlight of your phone, and let anyone who wanted to borrow them.
She plans on driving up to Tampa to continue lending out her light up boxes at the next Sanders rally.
Patrick Mesa came out with his own sign and high hopes, having complete confidence in Sander’s chances after his Michigan win.
“Truthfully speaking, I will not vote,” Mesa said, highlighting a fear of the Sanders campaign.
With the exception of about three Trump protesters (which I couldn’t tell if they were serious or just trying to pull a laugh out of the rally), there was an overwhelming grassroots support for Sanders outside of the debate venue.
People also took the opportunity of the mass exposure to express their own concerns and views, with marijuana legalization and anti-big-money sentiment being the major topics from the gathered activists.
Florida will become a deciding factor for the longevity of Sanders’ candidacy, and for the strength of Clinton’s campaign.
No matter who you support, you should get involved in the campaign. Create a sign, attend a rally, hold a fundraiser, annoy anyone that follows you on social media with political propaganda (actually try not to do that last one), maybe you’ll find a new appreciation for the political state of our country and its future.
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. You can write for us!
Cover Photo Credit: Matthew Alvarez/ RISE NEWSPost Views: 316
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