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Definition of "atrocity": An extremely wicked or cruel act, typically one involving physical violence or injury.
In 2009, a coup in Honduras has led to severe repression and death squad murders of political opponents, union organizers and journalists. At the time of the coup, U.S. officials denied any role in the coup and used semantics to avoid cutting off U.S. military aid as required under U.S. law. But two Wikileaks cables revealed that the U.S. Embassy, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, was the main power broker in managing the aftermath of the coup and forming a government that is now repressing and murdering its people.source
In 1990 in Haiti, Competing against 10 comparatively wealthy white candidates, leftist priest Jean-Bertrand Aristide captures 68 percent of the vote. A few months later, the CIA-backed military deposes him in a coup. More military dictators brutalize the country, as thousands of Haitian refugees escape the turmoil in barely seaworthy boats. As popular opinion calls for Aristide’s return, the CIA begins a disinformation campaign painting the courageous priest as mentally unstable.source
In 1989, The U.S. invades Panama to overthrow a dictator of its own making, General Manuel Noriega, with the state goal of "Defending democracy and human rights in Panama". Noriega had been on the CIA’s payroll since 1966, collecting at least $100,000 per year from the U.S. Treasury. As he rose to be the de facto ruler of Panama, he became even more valuable to the CIA, reporting on meetings with Fidel Castro and Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua and supporting U.S. covert wars in Central America, and had been transporting drugs with the CIA’s knowledge since 1972. By the late 80s, Noriega’s growing independence and intransigence had angered washington. Between 500-4,000 people died in the US invasion. source
In 1986, the Nicaraguan government under the Sandinistas shoots down a C-123 transport plane carrying military supplies to the Contras. The lone survivor, Eugene Hasenfus, turns out to be a CIA employee, as are the two dead pilots, contradicting Reagan's claims that the US was not aiding the contras. source
In the 1980s the CIA supported Battalion 316, a torture/assasination squad in Honduras, which kidnapped, tortured and killed hundreds of its citizens. Battalion 316 used shock and suffocation devices in interrogations , and prisoners often were kept naked and, when no longer useful, killed and buried in unmarked graves. Declassified documents and other sources show that the CIA and the U.S. Embassy knew of numerous crimes, including murder and torture, yet continued to support Battalion 316 and collaborate with its leaders. source
In 1980, In El Salvador, The Archbishop of San Salvador, Oscar Romero, pleads with President Carter to stop aiding the military government slaughtering his people. Carter refuses. Right-wing leader Roberto D’Aubuisson has Romero shot through the heart while saying Mass. The country soon dissolves into civil war, with the peasants in the hills fighting against the military government. The CIA and U.S. Armed Forces supply the government with overwhelming military and intelligence superiority, training death squads to roam the countryside, committing atrocities like that of El Mozote in 1982, where 800 civilians were massacred. By 1992, some 63,000 Salvadorans were killed. Back then Salvador was controlled by a mafia of 13 families who owned 50% of the land and wealth. The 13 families were heavily linked with the United States. CIA provided weapons and military training to the Salvadorean Army. As soon as the CIA discovered the priests were indoctrinating the masses, they began killing them.
In 1979, The CIA began to destabilize Grenada after Maurice Bishop became president, for his pro-cuba, anti-racism, and anti-apartheid stances. Under Bishop's leadership, Women were given equal pay and paid maternity leave, and sex discrimination was made illegal. Organisations for education (Center for Popular Education), health care, and youth affairs (National Youth Organization) were also established. The campaign against him resulted in his overthrow and the invasion by the U.S. of Grenada on October 25, 1983, with about 277 people dying.
In 1979, the US-backed dictator Anastasios Samoza II falls, beginning the popular Nicaraguan Revolution. Remnants of his Guard will become the Contras, who fight a CIA-backed guerilla war against the left-wing Sandinista government throughout the 1980s, with Reagan authorizing covert support to anti-Sandinista forces. source
In 1976, several CIA-linked anti-Castro Cuban exiles and members of the Venezuelan secret police DISIP were responsible for a terrorist bomb attack on Cuban flight 455, killing 73 people. CIA venezuelan operative Luis Posada Carriles, one of the bombers, fled and was granted amnesty in the US in 2007. source
In 1976, The CIA backed an overthrow of Argentinan leader Isabel Martínez de Perón by right wing anti-communist dictator Jorge Rafael Videla. In 1983, two years after the return of a representative democratic government, he was prosecuted in the Trial of the Juntas for large-scale human rights abuses and crimes against humanity that took place under his rule, including kidnappings or forced disappearance, widespread torture and extrajudicial murder of activists, and political opponents as well as their families at secret concentration camps, and harboring nazis. An estimated 13,000 -30,000 political dissidents vanished during this period. Videla was also convicted of the theft of many babies born during the captivity of their mothers at the illegal detention centres and passing them on for illegal adoption by associates of the regime. In his defence, Videla maintains the female guerrilla detainees allowed themselves to fall pregnant in the belief they wouldn't be tortured or executed. source
On 11 September 1973, The CIA backed a military coup to remove democratically elected socialist president Salvador Allende, in favor of right-wing dictator Augusto Pinochet. His US-supported regime was characterized by the systematic suppression of political parties and the persecution of dissidents to an extent that was unprecedented in the history of Chile, backed by the neoliberal free-market economic policies of the Chicago Boys. Over-all, the regime left over 3,000 dead or "dissappeared", tortured thousands of prisoners, and forced 200,000 Chileans into exile. He's known for the Villa Grimaldi, a torture complex, and his Caravan of Death, a Chilean Army death squad guilty of countless atrocities, including dropping pregnant women and teenagers out of helicopters in the ocean, and executions where prisoners were shot by parts, over extended periods of time. source
In 1971 in Bolivia, after half a decade of CIA-inspired political turmoil, a CIA-backed military coup overthrows the leftist President Juan Jose Torres, eventually being kidnapped and murdered by CIA backed right wing death squads, as part of Operation Condor. In the next two years, dictator Hugo Banzer will have over 2,000 political opponents arrested without trial, then tortured, raped and executed.
On February 15th, 2017, US-backed Saudi planes bombed a funeral in Yemen, killing 5 women and wounding dozens more. In the 2015 - Present Yemeni Civil War, 16,200 people have been killed including 10,000 civilians, 3 million have been displaced and left homeless, and over 200,000 people are facing shortages of food, water and medicine. The US has use drone bombers in Yemen, and has supported Saudi interests in the region, with military contracts providing weapons and planes. 1,2
In 2010, President Obama directed the CIA to assassinate an American citizen in Yemen, Anwar al-Awlaki, despite the fact that he had never been charged with any crime, killing him with a September, 2011 drone strike. Two weeks later, a separate CIA drone strike in Yemen killed his 16-year-old American-born son, Abdulrahman, along with the boy’s 17-year-old cousin and several other innocent Yemenis. In January 2017, Trump ordered a SEAL strike, and reports from Yemen quickly surfaced that 30 people were killed, including 10 women and children. Among the dead: the 8-year-old daughter of Anwar Awlaki, brother of the 16 year old killed by Obama. source
In 1998, the US bombed the Al Shifa pharmaceutical factory in Sudan, killing one employee and wounding 11. It was the largest pharmaceutical factory in Khartoum, producing medicine both for human and veterinary use. The US had acted on false evidence of a VX nerve agent from a single soil sample, and later used a false witness to cover for the attack. source
In June 1982, with the help of CIA money and arms, Hissene Habre , dubbed Africa's Pinochet, takes power in Chad. His secret police, use methods of torture including the burning the body of the detainee with incandescent objects, spraying gas into their eyes, ears and nose, forced swallowing of water, and forcing the mouths of detainees around the exhaust pipes of running cars. Habré's government also periodically engaged in ethnic cleansing against groups such as the Sara, Hadjerai and the Zaghawa, killing and arresting group members en masse when it was perceived that their leaders posed a threat to the regime. In May 2016 he was found guilty of human-rights abuses, including rape, sexual slavery and ordering the killing of 40,000 people, and sentenced to life in prison. source
In the 1980s, Reagan maintains a close relationship with the Apartheid South african government, called constructive engagement, while secretly funding it in the hopes of creating a bulwark of anti-communism and preventing a marxist party from taking power, as happened in angola. source
In 1975, Henry Kissinger launches a CIA-backed war in Angola, backing the brutal anti-communist leader of UNITAS, Jonas Savimbi, against the Marxist-Leninst MPLA party, creating a civil war lasting for 30 years. Congress continues to fund UNITAS, and their south-african apartheid allies until the late 1980s. By the end of the war, more than 500,000 people had died and over one million had been internally displaced. source
In 1966, a CIA-backed military coup overthrows he widely popular Pan-Africanist and Marxist leader Kwame Nkrumah in Ghana, inviting the International Monetary Fund and World Bank to take a lead role in managing the economy. With this reversal, accentuated by the expulsion of immigrants and a new willingness to negotiate with apartheid South Africa, Ghana lost a good deal of its stature in the eyes of African nationalists.source
In 1965, a CIA-backed military coup installs Mobutu Sese Seko, described as the "archetypal African dictator" in Congo. The hated and repressive Mobutu exploits his desperately poor country for billions.source
In 1967 in Greece, the CIA installed Georgios Papadopoulos, a CIA agent and former nazi collaborator, as the military ruler of Greece. He's seen today as an relic of authoritarianism , xenophobia, and anti-communism. source
In 1956, Radio Free Europe(a CIA funded propaganda outlet) incites Hungary to revolt by broadcasting Khruschev’s Secret Speech, in which he denounced Stalin. It also hints that American aid will help the Hungarians fight. This aid fails to materialize as Hungarians launch a doomed armed revolt, inviting a major Soviet invasion. The conflict kills 7,000 Soviets and 30,000 Hungarians. source
From 1948 onwards, the CIA under Allen Dulles developed a program of media manipulation called Project Mockingbird, having major influence over the media, including >25 newspapers. The usual method was placing reports developed from intelligence provided by the CIA to cooperating or unwitting reporters, or employing media directly as american assets.source
In 1948, the CIA corrupts the elections in Italy, where Italian communists threaten to win the elections. The CIA buys votes, broadcasts propaganda, threatens and beats up opposition leaders, and infiltrates and disrupts their organizations. The communists are defeated.1,2
In 1947, in Greek civil war and ensuing right wing military junta of 1967-74, Truman and the CIA provided money and support to anti-communist Greek dictators with deplorable human rights records.source
During the invasion of Sicily in July 1943, eight unarmed Italian civilians, including an eleven year old girl, were killed by U.S. troops. source
US soldiers killed 73 unarmed Italian and German prisoners of war in Santo Pietro, Italy on July 1943. The survivors were then shot at close range, directly through the heart. source
The Rheinwiesenlager (Rhine meadow camps) were a group of 19 US prison camps built in the Allied-occupied part of Germany to hold captured German soldiers at the close of the Second World War, holding between one and almost two million surrendered Wehrmacht personnel. Prisoners held in the camps were designated Disarmed Enemy Forces and not POWs, to avoid international treaty regulations. Between 3,000 to 10,000 died from starvation, dehydration and exposure to the weather elements because no structures were built inside the prison compounds. source
A study by Robert J. Lilly estimates that a total of 14,000 civilian women in England, France and Germany were raped by American GIs during World War II.source. It is estimated that there were around 3,500 rapes by American servicemen in France between June 1944 and the end of the war and one historian has claimed that sexual violence against women in liberated France was common.2
In July, 1945, the predecessor to the CIA, the US Office of Strategic Services (OSS), under the name Operation Paperclip, rescued and recruited 1,500 Nazi scientists, engineers, and spies. These included Reinhard Gehlen, Hitler’s master spy who had built up an intelligence network in the Soviet Union, SS intelligence officers Alfred Six and Emil Augsburg (who massacred Jews in the Holocaust), Klaus Barbie (the "Butcher of Lyon", who was used by the US to further anti-communist efforts in europe), Otto von Bolschwing (the Holocaust mastermind who worked with Eichmann) and SS Colonel Otto Skorzeny (a personal friend of Hitler’s). The policy of collaboration with nazi spies was deemed necessary to counter the threat from the USSR. source
In 1899, after a popular revolution in the Philippines to oust the Spanish imperialists, the US invaded and began the Phillipine-American war. The US military committed countless atrocities, leaving 200,000 Filipinos dead.
In 1970, In Cambodia, The CIA overthrows Prince Sihanouk, who is highly popular among Cambodians for keeping them out of the Vietnam War. He is replaced by CIA puppet Lon Nol, whose forces suppressed the large-scale popular demonstrations in favour of Sihanouk, resulting in several hundred deaths.source This unpopular move strengthens once minor opposition parties like the Khmer Rouge(another CIA supported group), who achieve power in 1975 and massacres ~2.5 million people. source
The shooting of Walter Scott occurred on April 4, 2015, in North Charleston, South Carolina, following a daytime traffic stop for a non-functioning brake light. Scott, an unarmed black man, was murdered by Michael Slager, a white North Charleston police officer. Slager was only charged with murder after an eyewitness video surfaced which showed him shooting Scott from behind while Scott was fleeing, and which contradicted his police report. Without the video, the shooting would've likely been deemed justified, as nearly all murders by police result in no charges. source
The shooting of Michael Brown occurred on August 9, 2014, in Ferguson, Missouri, a northern suburb of St. Louis. Brown, an unarmed 18-year-old black man was fatally shot by Darren Wilson, 28, a white Ferguson police officer, after robbing a convenience store. Protests in Ferguson erupted after the murderer was found innocent, evoking a militarized crackdown on black protestors by the predominantly white police force. This systemic pattern of murder of unarmed black civilians spawned the Black Lives Matter(BLM) movement. source
In 2004, during a protest at the republican national convention, over 1,800 people were arrested. They were held at Hudson Pier Depot at Pier 57 on the Hudson River, a three-story, block-long pier that has been converted into a temporary prison, described as overcrowded, dirty, and contaminated with oil and asbestos. People reported having suffered from smell, bad ventilation, and even chemical burns and rashes. In 2014, the city was forced to pay $ 6.4 million to 430 individual plaintiffs. $6.6 million was paid to settle a class-action lawsuit filed by 1,200 additional people. 1,2
On May 13, 1985, the police again attempted to evict MOVE, and bombed an entire city block, killing 11 people(including 5 children), and leaving 250 homeless. Police initially lobbed tear gas canisters at the building, and a gunfight with semi-automatic and automatic firearms ensued. Commissioner Sambor then ordered a bombing from a Pennsylvania State Police helicopter, and Philadelphia Police Department Lt. Frank Powell proceeded to drop two one-pound bombs made of C4 explosive (which the police referred to as "entry devices") made of FBI-supplied water gel explosive, a dynamite substitute, targeting a fortified, bunker-like cubicle on the roof of the house. The resulting explosions ignited a fire from fuel for a gasoline-powered generator in rooftop bunker that eventually destroyed approximately 65 nearby houses. The firefighters, who had earlier deluge-hosed the MOVE members in a failed attempt to evict them from the building, stood by as the fire caused by the bomb engulfed the first house and spread to others, having been given orders to let the fire burn. Despite the earlier drenching of the building by firefighters, officials said that they feared that MOVE would shoot at the firefighters. Eleven people (John Africa, five other adults and five children aged 7 to 13) died in the resulting fire and more than 250 people were left homeless. Ramona Africa, one of the two survivors, stated that police fired at those trying to escape. No one from the city government was charged criminally. source
In 1979, a communist-led march to oust the Ku Klux Klan and the American Nazi Party lead to the Greensboro Massacre, where local police helped the KKK stop the march and kill 5 protesters. Edward Dawson, a Klansman-turned FBI informant as part of the agency's COINTELPRO program and was among the founders of the North Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan when the North Carolina chapter of the United Klans of America split. By 1979 he was working as an informant for the Greensboro Police Department. He was given a copy of the march route from the police and informed them of the potential for violence. Absent the police, the attackers escaped with relative ease. The city lost a civil lawsuit in 1980, being one of the few times in US history when "a jury held local police liable for cooperating with the KKK in a wrongful death." source
In 1978, the police were involved in shootout with MOVE, a black power commune in Philadelphia, after attempting to evict them. The 9 surviving members(called the MOVE 9) were given 100 year long sentences, 7 of which are still currently in prison.
In 1967, a nationwide series of riots broke out in the black ghettos of the US, involving young blacks revolting against the white-supremacist power structure. In the 1967 Detroit Riot, Lyndon Johnson brought in the Michigan National guard to put down the revolt. The result was 43 dead, 1,189 injured, over 7,200 arrests, and more than 2,000 buildings destroyed. source
From December 1963 until his death in 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. was the target of an intensive campaign by the FBI to 'neutralize' him as an effective civil rights leader. This included wiretapping his phones, blackmail letters threatening to expose his extramarital affairs, a letter encouraging him to commit suicide, as well as watching King during his assassination, leading many to believe the FBI were either complicit, or accomplices. The FBI are similarly accused of being complicit or accomplices to the nation of Islam's murder of Malcolm X. source
Since January, 2013, over 21 US cities have enacted legislation to restrict giving food to the homeless, such as requiring expensive permits to discourage food donations in public spaces, or direct police intervention. In Tampa FL, on January 9th, 2017, police arrested 7 volunteers of Food Not Bombs and 1 homeless person to prevent them from distributing food. source
In 1988, a founder of Food Not Bombs, Keith McHenry, was one of nine volunteers arrested for sharing food and literature at Golden Gate Park on August 15, 1988. In the following years, Keith was arrested over 100 times for serving free food in city parks and spent over 500 nights in jail. He faced 25 years to life in prison under the California Three Strikes Law but in 1995, Amnesty International and the United Nations Human Rights Commission brought about his release. source
In 2010, Chelsea Manning was imprisoned under the espionage act for a series of leaks which embarrassed the US government, including the July 12, 2007 Baghdad airstrike, Afghan War documents, Iraq War documents leak, US diplomatic cables leak, and the Guantanamo Bay files leak. The leak was, in Manning's Words: "possibly one of the most significant documents of our time, removing the fog of war and revealing the true nature of 21st century asymmetric warfare". source
Between 1850 and 2011, according to the World Resources Institute, the United States was the source of 27 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions causing global warming; the European Union, 25 percent; China, 11 percent; Russia, 8 percent; and Japan, 4 percent. These emissions have led to the emergence of large-scale environmental hazards to human health, such as extreme weather, ozone depletion, increased danger of wildland fires, loss of biodiversity, stresses to food-producing systems and the global spread of infectious diseases. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 160,000 deaths, since 1950, are directly attributable to climate change. Many believe this to be a conservative estimate. To date, much less research has been conducted on the impacts of climate change on health, food supply, economic growth, migration, security, societal change, and public goods, such as drinking water, than on the geophysical changes related to global warming.1,2
In 1987, FBI agent Jack Ryan was arrested for refusing to investigate non-violent activists. He lost his job in September 1987 ten months short of retirement. He was thus ineligible for a full pension and had to live in a homeless shelter. In a report by the LA Times, he stated his belief that the Bureau could reinstate him to a position which would not conflict with his personal beliefs that U.S. involvement in Central America is "violent, illegal and immoral."source
In 1968, the CIA implemented Operation CHAOS, a spying program targeting Students for a Democratic Society(SDS), the Black Panthers, the Young Lords, Women Strike for Peace, and Ramparts Magazine, in an effort to tie vietnam anti-war protests to foreign intervention. CIA agents went undercover as student radicals to spy on and disrupt campus organizations protesting the Vietnam War. In total, Operation CHAOS contained files on 7,200 Americans, and a computer index totaling 300,000 civilians and approximately 1,000 groups, with no foreign interventionism found. The operation was halted after the watergate break-in, and exposed a few years later. source