World Dispatch

Catalonia- the Spanish Army are sending support troops to a military Sant Boi de Llobregat, a city located near Barcelona, equipped woith field kitchens, shows, bunks, and other support services. The Spanish are supporting an extended stay for the Guardia Civil units of infamy for their heavy-handed measures to stop the referendum on Calatan independence, which the conservative government has declared illegal. Lluisa Moret, the mayor of the city, has expressed concern. Tensions are escalating as Catalan officials, including the police chief for the region, are being asked to attend a court hearing tomorrow where they are to be questioned on charges of sedition.

But the slow-motion of the Catalan authorities, who have stated they will declare independence on Monday, is allowing the Kingdom of Spain time to marshal forces throughout the region in preparation for further suppression, Lacking outside help, and lacking all but the arms of the Catalan police, it is highly improbable the Catalan government can make good on any bid for independence. On the other hand, a growing percentage of Catalans will see the Spanish as occupiers and the potential for lone acts of resistance, or even terrorism, are possible in the coming months.

Nigeria/Biafra- the situation in the southeast region of Nigeria continues to be tense as the Nigerian Army has turned its focus from fighting Slafo-Jihadists in the north, home of President Buhari, to fighting Christian activists in the south who want independence for Biafra from the Nigerian state. Buhari is suspected of being synpathetic to Salafo-Jihadists as he has lessened the fight against them and increased his action against Christian tribes, such as the Igbo.

Under the pretext of fighting Salfo-Jihadist groups, Buhari was able to build up the manpower, training, and equipment of the Nigerian Army, which is increasingly populated by Muslim soldiers, but he is not using that army to fight the Jihadists. Instead, Nigerian forces are occupying towns and villages in the southeast and engaging in “Operation Dancing Python”, which is meant to eradicate an unarmed group called “The Inigenous People of Biafra” (IPOB), whom he has had his security forces declare to be terrorists.

Western countries, such as Britain, the UK, and France, have provided equipment, training, and support to help Nigeria fight terrorism, but instead the Muslim President is in fact utilizing those forces for settling domestic political scores, apparently without serious objection from the West. In fact, during the September meeting of the UN, President Trump met with President Buhari and the two were said to have had a cordial meeting.

Venezuela– President Marudo has stated that in the event of a US attack on his country, he has been assured that Russia will back his socialist regime. Meanwhile, threats by the US to impose an oil embargo, the US imports over 600,000 barrels per day from Venezuela, have been met with claims by the government that they have a “plan b, c, or d” to continue to sell oil. The Venezuelans have recently ditched the US dollar and post their prices in Chinese yuan. Maduro faces daily unrest, his government is out of money, and food and other necessities are in short supply.

At present, the US and regional powers have limited measures to blocking financial and economic transactions with the government and major companies in that country, but this has done nothing to alleviate the suffering or support the opposition, who, so far, have eschewed the use of arms. Between the opposition’s inability or unwillingness to resort to arms and outside powers being willing to intervene, some see Maduro as consolidating his hold over the country. Recently, he turned out the elected congress and used a sham election to install a new assembly that are hand-picked members of his Party who are set to rewrite the constitution in favor of the strong-man.

Burma- The UK has ceased it nearly $400,000 annual funding of the Burmese military, which was designated for anti-terrorism measures, in light of Burma’s continued oppression of minorities, such as the Karen peple, a mostly Christian people on the Birma-Thai border near the Three Pagodas Pass. The UK has criticized the government for using the excuse of “fighting terrorism” to actually wage war on minority peoples.

An ethnic cleansing campaign led by the Min Aung Hlang, the head of the military, has cuased hrave concerns in Whitehall. Refering to Burma as Myanmar, a term not accepted by many Burmese, the national government is currently waging war against a mostly Muslim people, the Rohingya. Over 400,000 have fled to Bangladash, which has observers concerned over instability. The Burmese government favor Buddhism over other religions, and have not hesitated to use force. On the other hand, their are many Burmese who claim the Rohingya harbor and support Salfo=Jihadist elements who have engaged in their own atrocities against other Burmese.

Regardless of the claims versus counter-claims, it is argues the Burmese government is painting the Rohingya with too broad a brush and point to their ethnic cleansing attempts with other minority peoples who were not Buddhists.