humanrightswatch:

Today the number of Syrian refugees in Lebanon will pass the 1 million mark. Three years after Syria’s conflict began, Lebanon has become the country with the highest per-capita concentration of refugees worldwide, struggling to keep pace with a crisis that shows no signs of slowing. Refugees from Syria now equal almost a quarter of the resident population.

humanrightswatch:

Today the number of Syrian refugees in Lebanon will pass the 1 million mark. 

Three years after Syria’s conflict began, Lebanon has become the country with the highest per-capita concentration of refugees worldwide, struggling to keep pace with a crisis that shows no signs of slowing. Refugees from Syria now equal almost a quarter of the resident population.

"You’re never more alive than in battle.”
“Never more dead after,” I say."
Patrick Ness - Monsters of Men

irresistible-revolution:

The Women Ridding Sri Lanka of Landmines

Jalini, 30, gets to work in the paddy fields in the ‘Vanni’, the ‘rice-bowl’ region of northern Sri Lanka. But she isn’t harvesting rice; rather she’s on the hunt for landmines, a deadly legacy of the violent 26 year-long conflict between the Sri Lankan government and the Tamil Tigers…until the various hidden landmines are identified and removed, the community in Thunnukai can’t work here. Jalini and her fellow de-miners have already found a dozen mines in this field alone, and believe there are some more. Across the north of Sri Lanka, an unknown number of land mines litter the once productive landscape, threatening lives and livelihoods.”

picturesfromgrandpa:

Sala (back row, far right).  Geppersdorf concentration camp, 1941.
When the Nazis invaded Poland in 1939, it was not immediately clear that they intended to kill the Jews of Europe.  In Sala’s home city of Sosnowiec, authorities ordered that one family member from each household be sent to work in a labor camp.  Sala volunteered to go in place of her sister, Rose.  She was sent to Geppersdorf labor camp where she worked in the laundry.  
After a year in the camps, some of the Jews working in Geppersdorf were allowed to return home for a “vacation.”  When she left home for the second time to return to the camp, her father blessed her as he said goodbye.  Sala never saw her parents again.  

picturesfromgrandpa:

Sala (back row, far right).  Geppersdorf concentration camp, 1941.

When the Nazis invaded Poland in 1939, it was not immediately clear that they intended to kill the Jews of Europe.  In Sala’s home city of Sosnowiec, authorities ordered that one family member from each household be sent to work in a labor camp.  Sala volunteered to go in place of her sister, Rose.  She was sent to Geppersdorf labor camp where she worked in the laundry.  

After a year in the camps, some of the Jews working in Geppersdorf were allowed to return home for a “vacation.”  When she left home for the second time to return to the camp, her father blessed her as he said goodbye.  Sala never saw her parents again.  

"The biggest myth about religion and violence, I believe, is that religion teaches hatred … I think the violence comes from a kind of love or desire for love for one’s own group and a willingness to do whatever it takes to obtain it."
Ariel Glucklich, Georgetown University
picturesfromgrandpa:

This picture was always prominently displayed in my Bubbe’s house. The woman on the right is Sala. All we knew of the woman on the left was that she was my grandmother’s friend from the camps. Her name was Ala.
In 1991, when Sala broke her 40 year silence on her experiences during the war we finally learned who the glamorous woman in the photograph was.
Ala Gertner befriended a 17 year old Sala in the train station on their first trip to the camps and from that moment on protected her like family. They were eventually separated but stayed in touch through letters. This photograph was taken when the Jewish laborers from Geppersdorf were sent home for a “vacation” from the camps in 1941.
Ala is a critical part of our family history but also holds a place in the larger story of the Jewish resistance during the holocaust. Ala Gertner was one of the four women responsible for blowing up a crematorium in Auschwitz.  All four women were hanged days before the camp was evacuated and three months before the survivors were liberated by British soldiers.  You can read more about Sala and Ala here.
My grandmother had several letters from Ala in her possession at the end of the war.  Her final letter to my grandmother, sent in the fall of 1943, read:

Dearest Sarenka,
Suddenly I’m here at the post office. The mail is going out today and how could I not write to my Sarenka? Just now, my husband, little Bernhard was here. He looks good and feels well. I’m curious about how you are, how your health is. We are well and plan to go to the camp. Today is a gorgeous day, we are in the best of spirits and have great hopes for the future…Don’t worry, girl, it’ll be fine. Be brave, stay well. Warm regards from my entire family and our Bernhard.
Kisses, your little Ala

picturesfromgrandpa:


This picture was always prominently displayed in my Bubbe’s house. The woman on the right is Sala. All we knew of the woman on the left was that she was my grandmother’s friend from the camps. Her name was Ala.

In 1991, when Sala broke her 40 year silence on her experiences during the war we finally learned who the glamorous woman in the photograph was.

Ala Gertner befriended a 17 year old Sala in the train station on their first trip to the camps and from that moment on protected her like family. They were eventually separated but stayed in touch through letters. This photograph was taken when the Jewish laborers from Geppersdorf were sent home for a “vacation” from the camps in 1941.

Ala is a critical part of our family history but also holds a place in the larger story of the Jewish resistance during the holocaust. Ala Gertner was one of the four women responsible for blowing up a crematorium in Auschwitz.  All four women were hanged days before the camp was evacuated and three months before the survivors were liberated by British soldiers.  You can read more about Sala and Ala here.

My grandmother had several letters from Ala in her possession at the end of the war.  Her final letter to my grandmother, sent in the fall of 1943, read:

Dearest Sarenka,

Suddenly I’m here at the post office. The mail is going out today and how could I not write to my Sarenka? Just now, my husband, little Bernhard was here. He looks good and feels well. I’m curious about how you are, how your health is. We are well and plan to go to the camp. Today is a gorgeous day, we are in the best of spirits and have great hopes for the future…Don’t worry, girl, it’ll be fine. Be brave, stay well. Warm regards from my entire family and our Bernhard.

Kisses, your little Ala

"I also expressed my concerns that drone attacks are fueling terrorism. Innocent victims are killed in these acts, and they lead to resentment among the Pakistani people."
pbsthisdayinhistory:


October 7, 2001: U.S. and British Troops Bomb Afghanistan
On this day in 2001, the war in Afghanistan began with the launch of U.S. and British troops’ bombing campaign, less than a month after 9/11 attacks and U.S. warnings to the Taliban.
Watch Washington Week’s ‘From The Vault’ news coverage for a look back at President Bush’s remarks and military strategy analysis. 
Photo: US President George W. Bush addresses the nation from the Oval Office September 11, 2001 at the White House in Washington, DC. (Getty Images).

pbsthisdayinhistory:

October 7, 2001: U.S. and British Troops Bomb Afghanistan

On this day in 2001, the war in Afghanistan began with the launch of U.S. and British troops’ bombing campaign, less than a month after 9/11 attacks and U.S. warnings to the Taliban.

Watch Washington Week’s ‘From The Vault news coverage for a look back at President Bush’s remarks and military strategy analysis. 

Photo: US President George W. Bush addresses the nation from the Oval Office September 11, 2001 at the White House in Washington, DC. (Getty Images).

todayinhistory:

August 27th 1896: Anglo-Zanzibar War

On this day in 1896, the shortest war in history was fought between the United Kingdom and the Zanzibar Sultanate. The war lasted only 40 minutes. The conflict was caused by the death of pro-British Sultan Hamad bin Thuwaini the day before. The British wanted the successor to be another sultan who would support Britain. The new sultan Khalid bin Barghash refused to stand down and barricaded himself inside his palace. British forces bombarded the sultan’s palace between 09.02 and 09.40, when the attack and thus the war ended. The sultan’s forces suffered 500 casualties, whilst the British only had one soldier wounded. The British were then able to put their preferred sultan in power in Zanzibar.

fotojournalismus:

A woman points at a stone with the name of her relative killed during the 80s and 90s in Lima on August 24, 2013. Relatives of victims commemorate the 10th anniversary of the release of the report of the Commission of Truth and Reconciliation of Peru, which concluded that there were nearly 70,000 people killed or missing during the nation’s 20 year civil conflict. The International Day of the Disappeared will be held at the end of the month on August 30.
[Credit : Ernesto Benavides/AFP/Getty Images]

fotojournalismus:

A woman points at a stone with the name of her relative killed during the 80s and 90s in Lima on August 24, 2013. Relatives of victims commemorate the 10th anniversary of the release of the report of the Commission of Truth and Reconciliation of Peru, which concluded that there were nearly 70,000 people killed or missing during the nation’s 20 year civil conflict. The International Day of the Disappeared will be held at the end of the month on August 30.

[Credit : Ernesto Benavides/AFP/Getty Images]