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With Liberty and Justice For Some: How the Anti-Defamation League Fuels Islamophobia

Abe FoxmanThe Anti-Defamation League bills itself, and is typically seen by many in the mainstream Jewish community and beyond, as the "nation's premier civil rights/human relations agency.” In fact, the ADL’s conduct over the years is at odds with this one-dimensional view of the group as a long-time champion of civil liberties.

The ADL mission statement, for instance, describes it as a group that “fights all forms of bigotry, defends democratic ideals and protects civil rights for all." Yet, a record going back decades shows something very different, including a shift “from civil rights monitoring to espionage and intelligence gathering.”  Mistrust of the ADL among those concerned about civil and human rights has deep roots.

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UN panel finds Israeli settlements violate rights

Israeli settlementsThe United Nations' first report on Israel's overall settlement policy describes it as a "creeping annexation" of territory that clearly violates the human rights of Palestinians, and calls for Israel to immediately stop further such construction.

The report's conclusions, revealed Thursday, are not legally binding, but they further inflame tensions between the U.N. Human Rights Council and Israel, and between Israel and the Palestinians. Israeli officials immediately denounced the report, while Palestinians pointed to it as "proof of Israel's policy of ethnic cleansing" and its desire to undermine the possibility of a Palestinian state.

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Guantanamo judge declines to explain mysterious censoring

Guiantanamo trialsThe military judge presiding over the trial of the five men accused of organizing the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks declined Tuesday to explain a mysterious episode in which the audio and video feeds to the proceedings were severed.

The feeds to the public gallery and media centers were stopped for a period of a few minutes during pre-trial arguments Monday at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba — apparently startling the judge, Army Col. James Pohl.

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Israel expected to boycott U.N. rights scrutiny session - U.S

UN Human Rights CouncilIsrael is expected to boycott the U.N. Human Rights Council next week despite the United States urging its ally to show up for an examination of its record, the U.S. ambassador said on Thursday.

The Jewish state is scheduled to be in the dock of the Geneva rights forum on Tuesday, January 29 as part of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process, the council's regular scrutiny of all United Nations member states.

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U.N. report finds torture of Afghan detainees, secret sites

Torture in Afghaistan Almost a third of all detainees recently transferred to Afghan control have been tortured and Afghanistan's spy agency is operating secret facilities to avoid international scrutiny, a United Nations report released on Sunday said.

The findings could complicate the already thorny issue of how to manage the security transition ahead of the withdrawal of NATO-led troops from Afghanistan by the end of next year. Hundreds of detainees are being transferred from NATO to Afghan control as part of that transition.

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Alabama civil rights pioneer James Hood dies at 70

 

James Hood and Vivian MalolneA US civil rights pioneer who confronted racial segregation in Alabama in the 1960s has died aged 70. James Hood died in his hometown of Gadsden in Alabama, a local funeral home said in an obituary notice.

Mr Hood was one of two black students to enter the all-white University of Alabama in June 1963. Their path was blocked by then Alabama Governor George Wallace and his state troopers until President John F Kennedy intervened.

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Nato stops sending prisoners to Afghan jails after reports of torture

Afghan prisonsNato forces in Afghanistan have stopped sending prisoners to some Afghan jails after reports of torture and have asked Kabul to investigate allegations of abuse by members of a US-backed paramilitary police force.

The ban on transfers revives concerns about human rights in Afghan prisons, first raised in 2011 by a United Nations report. The report detailed widespread abuse, including the ripping out of detainees' toenails and the twisting of their genitals, and prompted Nato-led troops to halt prisoner transfers for several months.

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