United Nations General Assembly resolution ES-10/L.22

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
UN General Assembly
Resolution ES‑10/L.22
United Nations General Assembly resolution A ES 10 L 22 vote.png

  Voted in favor
  Voted against
  Abstained
  Not present
Date 21 December 2017
Meeting no. 10th Emergency Special Session (continuation)
Code A/RES/ES‑10/L.22 (Document)
Subject Status of Jerusalem
Voting summary
128 voted for
9 voted against
35 abstained
21 absent
Result Recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital as “null and void”

United Nations General Assembly resolution ES‑10/L.22 is a emergency session resolution declaring the status of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital as “null and void.”.[1] It was adopted by the 37th Plenary meeting of the tenth emergency special session of the United Nations General Assembly[2] during the tenure of the seventy-second session of the United Nations General Assembly on 21 December 2017. The draft resolution was drafted by Yemen and Turkey.[3]Though strongly contested by the United States, it passed by 128 votes to nine against with 21 absentees and 35 abstentions.

Background[edit]

On 6 December 2017, US President Donald Trump said that he would recognise the status of Jerusalem as being Israel’s sovereign capital[4] in a departure from previous UNGA resolutions as well prevailing international norms where no state either recognises Jerusalem as a national capital nor has an embassy there. The move prompted protests from states and communities in many parts of the world.[5]

Following the failure of an United Nations Security Council resolution three days earlier, after an U.S. veto, to rescind the recognition by any states of Jerusalem as a national capital, Palestinian UN Ambassador Riyad Mansour said that the General Assembly would vote on a draft resolution calling for Trump’s declaration to be withdrawn. He sought to invoke Resolution 377, known as the “Uniting for Peace” resolution, to circumvent a veto. The resolution states that the General Assembly can call an Emergency Special Session to consider a matter “with a view to making appropriate recommendations to members for collective measures” if the Security Council fails to act.[6]

Campaign[edit]

On 20 December, US President Donald Trump threatened to cut US aid to countries voting against the US’ side.[7] The day before the vote, he said: “Let them vote against us…We don’t care…this isn’t like it used to be where they could vote against you and then you pay them hundreds of millions of dollars. We’re not going to be taken advantage of any longer.”[8]Ambassador Nikki Haley warned her country would remember and “take names” of every country that voted in favour of the resolution.[9][10][11][12] The governments of Turkey and Iran denounced USA’s threats as “anti-democratic” and “blackmail“.[13][14] She had sent to a letter to dozens of member states that warned Trump had asked her to “report back on those countries who voted against us.”[15] Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan warned Trump that “he cannot buy Turkey’s democratic will with petty dollars” and “that opposition of other countries will teach the United States a good lesson”.[16][17]

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that Israel rejects this vote before it passes and called the UN “house of lies”.[18]

Canada’s, which was seeking re-negotiations of the NAFTA, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland‘s spokesman confirmed its intention to abstain from the vote and that the resolution should not have come to the General Assembly.[19]

Content[edit]

The text of the resolution includes the following key statements:[20]

The General Assembly,

  • Bearing in mind the specific status of the Holy City of Jerusalem and, in particular, the need for the protection and preservation of the unique spiritual, religious and cultural dimensions of the City, as foreseen in the relevant United Nations resolutions,
  • Stressing that Jerusalem is a final status issue to be resolved through negotiations in line with relevant United Nations resolutions,
  • Expressing in this regard its deep regret at recent decisions concerning the status of Jerusalem,
  • Affirms that any decisions and actions which purport to have altered, the character, status or demographic composition of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal effect, are null and void and must be rescinded in compliance with relevant resolutions of the Security Council, and in this regard, calls upon all States to refrain from the establishment of diplomatic missions in the Holy City of Jerusalem, pursuant to resolution 478 (1980) of the Security Council;
  • Demands that all States comply with Security Council resolutions regarding the Holy City of Jerusalem, and not to recognize any actions or measures contrary to those resolutions;
  • Reiterates its call for the reversal of the negative trends on the ground that are imperiling the two-State solution and for the intensification and acceleration of international and regional efforts and support aimed at achieving, without delay, a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East on the basis of the relevant United Nations resolutions, the Madrid terms of reference, including the principle of land for peace, the Arab Peace Initiative and the Quartet Roadmap and an end to the Israeli occupation that began in 1967.

It concluded in reading that “any decisions and actions, which purport to have altered the character, status or demographic composition of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal effect, are null and void and must be rescinded in compliance with relevant resolutions of the Security Council.”[21]

Motion[edit]

The motion was proposed by Yemen and Turkey.[22]

Debate[edit]

In introducing the resolution as Chair of the Arab Group, Yemen’s Amabassador said the US decision was a “blatant violation of the rights of the Palestinian people, as well as those of all Christians and Muslims.” He emphasized that it constituted a “dangerous breach of the Charter of the United Nations and a serious threat to international peace and security, while also undermining the chances for a two‑State solution and fuelling the fires of violence and extremism.”[23]

Turkey, who was the co-sponsor of the draft resolution, also spoke as current Chair of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation(OIC).[23] Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that Trump’s decision was an outrageous assault to all universal values. “The Palestinians have the right to their own state based on 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital. This is the main parameter and only hope for a just and lasting peace in the region. However, the recent decision of a UN Member State to recognise Jerusalem, or Al-Quds, as the capital of Israel, violates international law, including all relevant UN resolutions.”[22]

The General Assembly heard from Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Al‑Malki, who said that the meeting was “not because of any animosity to the United States of America” but instead the sessions was “called to make the voice of the vast majority of the international community — and that of people around the world — heard on the question of Jerusalem/Al‑Quds Al‑Sharif.” He called the US decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and to move its embassy there “an aggressive and dangerous move” which could inflame tensions and lead to a religious war that “has no boundaries.” He added that though the decision would have no impact on the city’s status, it would nevertheless compromise the role of the United States in the Middle East peace process.[23] He urged member states to reject “blackmail and intimidation.”[5]

US Ambassador Nikki Haley then said that her country was “singled out for attack” because of its recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. She added that: “The United States will remember this day in which it was singled out for attack in the General Assembly for the very act of exercising our right as a sovereign nation,” Haley said. We will remember it when we are called upon to once again make the world’s largest contribution to the United Nations, and so many countries come calling on us, as they so often do, to pay even more and to use our influence for their benefit.”[15] She added that: “America will put our embassy in Jerusalem. That is what the American people want us to do, and it is the right thing to do. No vote in the United Nations will make any difference on that…this vote will make a difference in how Americans view the UN.”[22]

Israel’s Ambassador Danny Danon then told the assembly that the vowed that “no General Assembly resolution will ever drive us from Jerusalem.”[4]

Venezuela’s Ambassador, speaking for the Non‑Aligned Movement (NAM), expressed “grave concern about Israel’s ongoing violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including attempts to alter the character, status and demographic composition of the City of Jerusalem. [It was] slso concerned about the decision to relocate the United States embassy [and] warned that such provocative actions would further heighten tensions, with potentially far‑reaching repercussions given the extremely volatile backdrop.[23]

Other speakers included, Pakistan, Indonesia, Maldives, Syria, Bangladesh, Cuba, Iran and China.[23]

Malaysia’s Ambassador Datuk Seri Mohammed Shahrul Ikram Yaakob said that, as a member of the OIC and NAM, “Malaysia joins the international community in expressing our deep concern and rejects the decision by the United States to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. It is also an infringement of the Palestinian people’s rights and their right to self determination.” He called for a peaceful two-state solution and that Malaysia is concerned the situation will only feed into the agenda of extremists.”[2]

Other speakers included, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and South Africa. The Permanent Observer for the Holy See, Tomasz Grysa, emphasised that Jerusalem was most sacred to the Abrahamic faiths and a symbol for millions of believers around the world who considered it their “spiritual capital.” Its significance went “beyond the question of borders, a reality that should be considered a priority in every negotiation for a political solution.” The Holy See, he said, called for a “peaceful resolution that would ensure respect for the sacred nature of Jerusalem and its universal value…reiterating that only international guarantee could preserve its unique character and status and provide assurance of dialogue and reconciliation for peace in the region.”[23]

After the motion was passed, more speeches continued with Estonia, who also spoke on behalf of other states. Australia’s Ambassador then explained her country’s government did “not support unilateral action that undermined the peace process [and] it did not believe today’s text would help to bring the parties back to the negotiating table.”[23]

Other speakers included, Paraguay, whose Ambassador said that the country would abstain because “the question of Jerusalem was a matter for the Security Council, as the primary body responsible for the maintenance of international peace and security.”[23] This was followed by El Salvador, Argentina and Romania.[23]

Canada’s Ambassador Marc-Andre Blanchard called the proposal “one-sided”[23] and said: “We are disappointed that this resolution is one sided and does not advance prospects for peace to which we aspire, which is why we have abstained on today’s vote.” He, however, added that Canada wanted to emphasise Jerusalem’s special significance to the Abrahamic religions of Jews, Muslims and Christians. “Denying the connection between Jerusalem and the Jewish, Muslim and Christian faiths undermines the integrity of the site for all. We also reiterate the need to maintain the status quo at Jerusalem’s Holy sites.[19]

Nicaragua’s explained its support of the resolution, as it “rebuffed recent unilateral attempts to modify the character and status of Jerusalem. Such unilateral actions were in blatant violation of resolution 2234 (2016) and others…unilateral actions jeopardised peace and stability in the Middle East and drew the international community further away from a solution.”[23]

Mexico’s Ambassador then explained the abstention and emphasised that convening an emergency session was a disproportionate response. “The United States must become part of the solution, not a stumbling block that would hamper progress…the international community was further than ever from agreement.”[23]

The Czech Republic then said that while it supported the European Union position, it had abstained because it “did not believe the draft resolution would contribute to the peace process.”[23]

Armenia said that is position “remained unchanged. The situation should be resolved through negotiations paving the way for lasting peace and security.”[23]

Hungary echoed Armenia’s stance and said it would not comment on the foreign relations of the United States.[23]

Latvia then spoke, before Estonia re-took the floor to say it had also spoken on behalf of Albania, Lithuania and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.[23]

Result[edit]

Vote[24] Quantity States
Approve 128 Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cape Verde, Cambodia, Chad, Chile, China, Comoros, Republic of the Congo, Costa Rica, Cuba, Cyprus, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guinea, Guyana, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Ivory Coast, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Russia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Somalia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Macedonia, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Tanzania, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen, Zimbabwe.
Reject 9 Guatemala, Honduras, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Togo, United States.
Abstain 35 Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Bahamas, Benin, Bhutan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cameroon, Canada, Colombia, Croatia, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji, Haiti, Hungary, Jamaica, Kiribati, Latvia, Lesotho, Malawi, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Rwanda, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, Vanuatu.
Absent 21 Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, East Timor, El Salvador, Georgia, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Mongolia, Myanmar, Moldova, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Samoa, San Marino, São Tomé and Príncipe, Sierra Leone, Swaziland, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Zambia.

Reactions[edit]

States

Israel – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected the result shortly after it was announced in call it “preposterous,” while he also thanked the states that supported “the truth” by not participating in “the theatre of the absurd.” He added that: “Jerusalem is our capital. Always was, always will be…But I do appreciate the fact that a growing number of countries refused to participate in this theatre of the absurd. So I appreciate that, and especially I want to again express our thanks to [US] President (Donald) Trump and Ambassador [Nikki] Haley, for their stalwart defence of Israel and their stalwart defence of the truth.” Defence Minister Avigdor Liberman, reminded Israelis of the longstanding Israeli disdain for such votes. “Let us just remember that this is the same UN about which our first ambassador to the organisation, Abba Eban, once said: ‘If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions’. There is nothing new in what just happened at the UN.” He also praised the US as “the moral beacon shining out of the darkness.” Minister of Strategic Affairs and Public Security Gilad Erdan said: “The historic connection between Israel and Jerusalem is stronger than any vote by the ‘United Nations’ — nations who are united only by their fear and their refusal to recognise the simple truth that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and the Jewish people.”

    • However, opposition Joint List Chairman and MK Ayman Odeh called the vote a wake-up call for Israel: “In the international arena, there still exists a large and definitive majority that believes that the Palestinian people, like all other nations, deserve a place in this world and the right to self-determination. This evening’s vote by the majority of the world’s nations against Trump’s announcement, in spite of the pressure and threats, flies in the face of Trump’s and Netanyahu’s diplomatic policy and is a clear statement by the international community in support of peace and the right of the Palestinians to an independent state, whose capital is East Jerusalem,”[8]
Media

Haaretz‘s Noa Landau, wrote, in citing unnamed diplomatic sourced, that Israel was particularly disappointed with countries like India that have enhanced bilateral relations with it recently. “The main disappointment in Israel was with the countries that have enhanced bilateral relations in recent years, especially those that share a particularly conservative worldview with the Netanyahu government. For example, India – whose Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, visited Israel in July, a tour that was memorable mainly for the pastoral photographs of him and Netanyahu embracing and wading in the waves – voted for the resolution against Israel and the United States.”[8]

Others

At a “Solidarity to Save Jerusalem” rally organised by the Barisan National government in Malaysia, one of the attendees Association of NextGen Christians of Malaysia President Joshua Hong said at the Putra Mosque: “We are here because we feel that the decision made by President Trump on announcing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is merely a political decision. He added that the decision also hurts Christian and Arabic churches in Palestine and not just the Muslims. “To us as Christians, Jerusalem is a city of peace and after that announcement, we feel there is no more peace.I think it is not right and unjust. We believe we should continue pursuing the sustainable peace solution for Palestine and Israel, rather than just a single nation declaring it just like that.” He claimed that about 50 members of the group turned up in a show of support for the Palestinian people..[2]

Tinsel & Terror: Synchromystic Geography

By:Twilight Language

Point of view is important. As some people have noted, the truck used to plow into a crowd at Berlin’s Christmas Market, seen at a different angle, is a monolith. Look for more in the next week.
The Season of Christmas 2016 will be one targeted by those who wish to do others harm.

Viewing the world synchromystically ‎concerns the drawing of connections in modern culture (movies, music lyrics, historical happenings and esoteric knowledge); and finding connections that could be issuing from the “collective unconscious mind”; and finding connections between occult knowledge (i.e. esoteric fraternities, cults and secret rituals), forteana, politics and mass media.

As readers of various artisans of synchromysticism, as well as of this blog, you are all familiar with the connecting of the dots that can take detours and side treks leading to a variety of surprising links.

During the remarkable period that occurred right before 2016’s Winter Solstice, terrorist attacks tied to intriguing location spotlighted synchromystic geography.

Here are the moments, with an attempt to note the specific, intriguing “places” that were interwoven with these events.

1. Yemen: Home of Nasser al-Anbouri

On Sunday morning, December 18, 2016, a suicide bomber disguised as a disabled man killed 52 people and injured over 80 others, in Aden, Yemen. The attack near a military base targeted a gathering of Yemeni security officers, and the majority of those killed were Yemeni soldiers who were waiting to receive their salaries. The bombing happened outside the home of Nasser al-Anbouri, the commander of the Special Security Forces, near a military base in Aden. The Islamic State claimed responsibility.

2. Jordan: Karak Crusader Castle

Seven Jordanian security officers, a Canadian tourist and two Jordanian civilians were killed by gunmen in the southern city of Karak on Sunday, December 18, 2016. After a couple of shooting incidents, at a home and an attack on a police station, police were told the gunmen were hiding inside the Karak Crusader castle, a prominent tourist attraction on a hilltop. Several Canadian news outlets identified the tourist as Linda Vatcher, a retired teacher from Newfoundland. At the time of the attack, she was visiting her son David or Chris (as he has been variously identified), who works in the region. He is among the injured. Four of the attackers were also killed.

On Tuesday, December 20, 2016, at Karak, Jordan again, four Jordanian security personnel were killed in fresh clashes with armed men near the central town of Karak.
Kerak Castle is a large Crusader castle located in al-Karak, Jordan. It is one of the largest crusader castles in the Levant. Construction of the castle began in the 1140s, under Pagan, Fulk, King of Jerusalem. The Crusaders called it Crac des Moabites or “Karak in Moab” referred to in history books.
The New York Times headlined this time, “Ankara, Berlin, Zurich: A Day of Terror.”

3. Turkey: Ankara Exhibition Hall

On 19 December 2016, at 20:15, Russia’s Turkey ambassador Andrei Karlov was shot and fatally wounded by Mevlüt Mert Altıntaş, a 22-year-old off-duty Turkish police officer, at an art exhibition in Ankara, Turkey. The attacker, who was dressed in a suit and tie, opened fire at Karlov at point-blank range while the ambassador was delivering his speech in front of journalists, fatally wounding the ambassador and injuring several others. The attacker gained access to the gallery after he showed his police ID to security guards.

A video of the attack showed the assassin crying out: “Don’t forget Aleppo, don’t forget Syria!” and “Allahu Akbar” (God is Greatest) while holding a gun in one hand and waving the other in the air in the tawhid salute. The assailant shouted in Arabic and Turkish. Altıntaş was subsequently shot by Turkish security forces. Both were rushed to hospital, but they died from their injuries.

The city of Ankara announced that the exhibition hall where Karlov was assassinated would be named after Andrei Karlov.

4. Switzerland: Zurich Islamic Center

At approximately 5:30 PM on 19 December 2016, a man entered an Islamic center near the main train station in Zürich and began shooting, apparently at random. The center, which is primarily used by refugees from Somalia and Eritrea, was hosting prayer services at the time. Approximately 10 people were present at the shooting. Three people were wounded in the attack, two seriously, though all are expected to survive. The victims are two Somali nationals, age 30 and 35, and a Swiss citizen age 56. One witness reported hearing the shooter yell “Raus aus unserem Land [Get out of our country]” during the attack, though police could not confirm this.

After the shooting, the suspect (a 24-year-old Swiss citizen of Ghanian descent living in Uster) fled the area on foot and a police manhunt was started to locate and capture him. Police brought in dog tracking teams to attempt to locate the suspect, and alerted the public to be wary. It was subsequently discovered that the suspect apparently took his own life with a self-inflicted gunshot. His body was found a few hours after the shooting under the Gessner Bridge on the river Sihl approximately 300 metres (980 ft) from the Islamic center shooting site. (The first written reference to the name Sihl dates to 1018, in the form Sylaha. The name may be of Old European or Celtic origin: *Sîla (“quiet watercourse,” from a root *sîl = “to trickle, wet”) > Romance Sila with the addition of the Old High German element aha “flowing water”.)

At approximately 9 AM on 18 December 2016, a dead stabbing victim was discovered on a playground in the Schwamendingen district of Zürich. The victim was a 25-year-old Swiss citizen of Chilean origin whose name has been withheld. The police identified a suspect in the murder based on DNA evidence at the scene and began searching for the assailant. The suspect’s DNA was in a police database due to an arrest seven years prior for stealing a bicycle, and he was known to be a former friend of the murder victim.

5. Germany: Berlin Christmas Market/Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church

A terrorist attack on 19 December 2016, at 20:02 local time, during which a truck was driven into the Christmas market next to the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church at Breitscheidplatz in Berlin, left 12 people dead and 56 others injured. One of the victims was the truck’s original driver, Łukasz Urban, who was found shot dead in the passenger seat. A suspect was arrested and later released due to lack of evidence. Another person, suspected to be the actual perpetrator, was killed four days later during a shootout with police near Milan in Italy.

On 21 December, police announced that investigators had found, under the truck’s driver’s seat, a suspension of deportation permit belonging to Anis Amri, a man who was born in Tataouine, Tunisia, in 1992. The suspect synced with Star Wars, as I noted in a tweet.

The truck came to a stop at one of the Christmas trees in front of the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church at the Berlin Market.

Here is the scene before the truck knocked one tree down.
Students of Joe Alexander’s Back to the Future Predicting 9/11 will recognize the twin pines that symbolize more.
6. Explosion at Aleppo Christmas tree celebration

On December 20, 2016, a well-attended Christmas tree-lighting ceremony in the Syrian city of Aleppo was rocked by an explosion meters away from the gathered crowd. No casualties have been reported.

We are seeing the unfolding of ancient battles in an ancient land.

Aleppo had cultic importance to the Hittites for being the center of worship of the Storm-God*. this religious importance continued after the collapse of the Hittite empire at the hands of the Assyrians and Phrygians in the 12th century BC, when Aleppo became part of the Middle Assyrian Empire (1365-1050 BC), whose king renovated the temple of Hadad which was discovered in 2003.

Modern-day English-speakers commonly refer to the city as Aleppo. It was known in antiquity as Khalpe, Khalibon, and to the Greeks and Romans as Beroea (Βέροια). During the Crusades, and again during the French Mandate for Syria and the Lebanon of 1923-1946, the name Alep was used. Aleppo represents the Italianised version of this.

The original ancient name, Halab, has survived as the current Arabic name of the city. However, the name is of pre-Arab origin. Some have proposed that halab means “iron” or “copper” in Amorite, one of the north west Semitic Canaanite languages, since the area served as a major source of these metals in antiquity, and the Amorites dominated the region during the Bronze Age. However, according to the 20th-century historian sheikh Kamel al-Ghazzi and to the contemporary linguist priest Barsoum Ayyoub, the name Halab(and consequently Aleppo) derives from the Aramaic word Halaba which means “white”, referring to the color of soil and marble abundant in the area. The modern-day Arabic nickname of the city, ash-Shahbaa (Arabic: الشهباء), which means “the white-colored,” also allegedly derives from the famous white marble of Aleppo.

From the 11th century it was common rabbinic usage to apply the term “Aram-Zobah” to the area of Aleppo, and many Syrian Jews continue to do so.

*The Storm God: Teshub is depicted holding a triple thunderbolt and a weapon, usually an axe (often double-headed) or mace. The sacred bull common throughout Anatolia was his signature animal, represented by his horned crown or by his steeds Seri and Hurri, who drew his chariot or carried him on their backs.

If you are reminded of Thor, you are seeing the connection.

CERN

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 Consider Revelation 6:12-17…. great earthquake (CERN, double power 15th, earthquakes guaranteed) Sun to sackcloth (eclipse on 20th) moon to blood (blood moon 4/4), sky rolls up like a scroll (CERN collapsing the pillars that hold up heaven and earth… google axis mundi) stars fall to heaven (from whatever realm cern opens), islands and mountains moved from their places (crustal pole shift?) Kings and free men hiding underground (happening now, and if our magnetosphere collapses because of CERN… we will have to hide from the radiation of the sun)

Coordinates: 46°14′03″N 6°03′10″E

European Organization
for Nuclear Research
Organisation européenne
pour la recherche nucléaire
CERN official logo.jpg
CERN member states .svg

Member states
Formation 29 September 1954[1]
Headquarters Meyrin, Canton of Geneva,Switzerland
Membership
Official languages
English and French
Council President
Agnieszka Zalewska[2]
Rolf-Dieter Heuer
Website www.cern.ch

The European Organization for Nuclear Research (French: Organisation européenne pour la recherche nucléaire), known as CERN (/ˈsɜrn/; French pronunciation: ​[sɛʁn]; derived from “Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire”; see History) is a Europeanresearch organization that operates the largest particle physics laboratory in the world. Established in 1954, the organization is based in the northwest suburbs of Geneva on the Franco–Swiss border, (46°14′3″N 6°3′19″E) and has 21 European member states. Israel is the first (and currently only) non-European country granted full membership.[3]

The term CERN is also used to refer to the laboratory, which in 2013 counted 2,513 staff members, and hosted some 12,313 fellows, associates, apprentices as well as visiting scientists and engineers[4] representing 608 universities and research facilities and 113 nationalities.[citation needed]

CERN’s main function is to provide the particle accelerators and other infrastructure needed for high-energy physics research – as a result, numerous experiments have been constructed at CERN following international collaborations.

CERN is also the birthplace of the World Wide Web. The main site at Meyrin has a large computer centre containing powerful data processing facilities, primarily for experimental-data analysis; because of the need to make these facilities available to researchers elsewhere, it has historically been a major wide area networking hub.

§History[edit]

The 12 founding member states of CERN in 1954 [1] (map borders from 1989)

The convention establishing CERN was ratified on 29 September 1954 by 12 countries in Western Europe.[1] The acronym CERN originally stood in French for Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire (European Council for Nuclear Research), which was a provisional council for setting up the laboratory, established by 12 European governments in 1952. The acronym was retained for the new laboratory after the provisional council was dissolved, even though the name changed to the current Organisation Européenne pour la Recherche Nucléaire (European Organization for Nuclear Research) in 1954.[5] According to Lew Kowarski, a former director of CERN, when the name was changed, the acronym could have become the awkward OERN, and Heisenberg said that the acronym could “still be CERN even if the name is [not]”.[citation needed]

CERN’s first president was Sir Benjamin Lockspeiser. The first Director General was Edoardo Amaldi.

Soon after the laboratory’s establishment, its work went beyond the study of the atomic nucleus into higher-energy physics, which is concerned mainly with the study of interactions between particles. Therefore the laboratory operated by CERN is commonly referred to as the European laboratory for particle physics (Laboratoire européen pour la physique des particules), which better describes the research being performed there.

§Scientific achievements[edit]

Several important achievements in particle physics have been made during experiments at CERN. They include:

The 1984 Nobel Prize in physics was awarded to Carlo Rubbia and Simon van der Meer for the developments that led to the discoveries of the W and Z bosons. The 1992 Nobel Prize in physics was awarded to CERN staff researcher Georges Charpak “for his invention and development of particle detectors, in particular the multiwire proportional chamber.”

§Computer science[edit]

This NeXT Computer used by British scientistSir Tim Berners-Lee at CERN became the first Web server.
This Cisco Systems router at CERN was one of the first IP routersdeployed in Europe.
Plate placed next to the office where Tim Berners-Lee began the World Wide Web

The World Wide Web began as a CERN project calledENQUIRE, initiated by Tim Berners-Lee in 1989 andRobert Cailliau in 1990.[13] Berners-Lee and Cailliau were jointly honoured by the Association for Computing Machinery in 1995 for their contributions to the development of the World Wide Web.

Based on the concept of hypertext, the project was aimed at facilitating sharing information among researchers. The first website went on-line in 1991. On 30 April 1993, CERN announced that the World Wide Web would be free to anyone. A copy[14] of the original first webpage, created by Berners-Lee, is still published on the World Wide Web Consortium‘s website as a historical document.

Prior to the Web’s development, CERN had been a pioneer in the introduction of Internet technology, beginning in the early 1980s. A short history of this period can be found at CERN.ch.[15]

More recently, CERN has become a centre for the development of grid computing, hosting projects including the Enabling Grids for E-sciencE (EGEE) and LHC Computing Grid. It also hosts the CERN Internet Exchange Point (CIXP), one of the two main internet exchange points in Switzerland.

§Faster-than-light neutrino anomaly[edit]

On 22 September 2011, the OPERA Collaboration reported the detection of 17 GeV and 28 GeV muon neutrinos, sent 730 kilometers (450 miles) from CERN near Geneva,Switzerland to the Gran Sasso National Laboratory in Italy, traveling apparently faster than light by a factor of 2.48×10−5 (approximately 1 in 40,000), a statistic with 6.0-sigma significance.[16] However, in March 2012 it was reported by a new team of scientists for CERN, Icarus, that the previous experiment was most likely flawed and will be retested by scientists of both the Opera and Icarus teams;[17] on 16 March, CERN stated in a press release that the results were flawed due to an incorrectly connected GPS-synchronization cable.[18]

§Particle accelerators[edit]

§Current complex[edit]

Map of the CERN accelerator complex

Map of the Large Hadron Collidertogether with the Super Proton Synchrotron at CERN

CERN operates a network of six accelerators and a decelerator. Each machine in the chain increases the energy of particle beams before delivering them to experiments or to the next more powerful accelerator. Currently active machines are:

  • Two linear accelerators generate low energy particles. Linac2 accelerates protons to 50 MeV for injection into the Proton Synchrotron Booster (PSB), and Linac3 provides heavy ions at 4.2 MeV/u for injection into the Low Energy Ion Ring (LEIR).[19]
  • The Proton Synchrotron Booster increases the energy of particles generated by the proton linear accelerator before they are transferred to the other accelerators.
  • The Low Energy Ion Ring (LEIR) accelerates the ions from the ion linear accelerator, before transferring them to theProton Synchrotron (PS). This accelerator was commissioned in 2005, after having been reconfigured from the previousLow Energy Antiproton Ring (LEAR).
  • The 28 GeV Proton Synchrotron (PS), built in 1959 and still operating as a feeder to the more powerful SPS.
  • The Super Proton Synchrotron (SPS), a circular accelerator with a diameter of 2 kilometres built in a tunnel, which started operation in 1976. It was designed to deliver an energy of 300 GeV and was gradually upgraded to 450 GeV. As well as having its own beamlines for fixed-target experiments (currently COMPASS and NA62), it has been operated as a protonantiproton collider (the SppS collider), and for accelerating high energy electrons and positrons which were injected into the Large Electron–Positron Collider (LEP). Since 2008, it has been used to inject protons and heavy ions into the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).
  • The On-Line Isotope Mass Separator (ISOLDE), which is used to study unstable nuclei. The radioactive ions are produced by the impact of protons at an energy of 1.0–1.4 GeV from the Proton Synchrotron Booster. It was first commissioned in 1967 and was rebuilt with major upgrades in 1974 and 1992.
  • The Antiproton Decelerator (AD), which reduces the velocity of antiprotons to about 10% of the speed of light for research intoantimatter.
  • The Compact Linear Collider Test Facility, which studies feasibility issues for the future normal conducting linear collider project.

§Large Hadron Collider[edit]

Main article: Large Hadron Collider

Most of the activities at CERN are currently directed towards operating the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), and the experiments for it. The LHC represents a large-scale, worldwide scientific cooperation project.

Construction of the CMSdetector for LHC at CERN

The LHC tunnel is located 100 metres underground, in the region between the Geneva International Airport and the nearby Jura mountains. It uses the 27 km circumference circular tunnel previously occupied by LEP which was closed down in November 2000. CERN’s existing PS/SPS accelerator complexes will be used to pre-accelerate protons which will then be injected into the LHC.

Seven experiments (CMS, ATLAS, LHCb, MoEDAL,[20] TOTEM, LHC-forward and ALICE) will run on the collider; each of them will study particle collisions from a different point of view, and with different technologies. Construction for these experiments required an extraordinary engineering effort. For example, a special crane was rented from Belgium to lower pieces of the CMS detector into its underground cavern, since each piece weighed nearly 2,000 tons. The first of the approximately 5,000 magnets necessary for construction was lowered down a special shaft at 13:00 GMT on 7 March 2005.

The LHC has begun to generate vast quantities of data, which CERN streams to laboratories around the world for distributed processing (making use of a specialized grid infrastructure, the LHC Computing Grid). In April 2005, a trial successfully streamed 600 MB/s to seven different sites across the world. If all the data generated by the LHC is to be analysed, then scientists must achieve 1,800 MB/s before 2008.

The initial particle beams were injected into the LHC August 2008.[21] The first attempt to circulate a beam through the entire LHC was at 8:28 GMT on 10 September 2008,[22] but the system failed because of a faulty magnet connection, and it was stopped for repairs on 19 September 2008.

The LHC resumed operation on 20 November 2009 by successfully circulating two beams, each with an energy of 3.5 trillion electron volts. The challenge that the engineers then faced was to try to line up the two beams so that they smashed into each other. This is like “firing two needles across the Atlantic and getting them to hit each other” according to the LHC’s main engineer Steve Myers, director for accelerators and technology at the Swiss laboratory.

At 1200 BST on 30 March 2010 the LHC successfully smashed two proton particle beams travelling with 3.5 TeV (trillion electron volts) of energy, resulting in a 7 TeV event. However, this was just the start of the road toward the expected discovery of the Higgs boson. When the 7 TeV experimental period ended, the LHC revved up to 8 TeV (4 TeV acceleration in both directions) in March 2012, and soon began particle collisions at that rate. In early 2013 the LHC was shut down for a two-year maintenance period, to strengthen the huge magnets inside the accelerator. Eventually it will attempt to create 14 TeV events. In July 2012, CERN scientists announced the discovery of a new sub-atomic particle that could be the much sought after Higgs boson believed to be essential for formation of the Universe.[23] In March 2013, CERN announced that the measurements performed on the newly found particle allowed it to conclude that this is a Higgs boson.[24]

§Decommissioned accelerators[edit]

§Sites[edit]

Interior of office building 40 at the Meyrin site. Building 40 hosts many offices for scientists from the CMS and ATLAS collaborations.

The smaller accelerators are on the main Meyrin site (also known as the West Area), which was originally built in Switzerland alongside the French border, but has been extended to span the border since 1965. The French side is under Swiss jurisdiction and there is no obvious border within the site, apart from a line of marker stones. There are six entrances to the Meyrin site:[citation needed]

  • A, in Switzerland, for all CERN personnel at specific times.
  • B, in Switzerland, for all CERN personnel at all times. Often referred to as the main entrance.
  • C, in Switzerland, for all CERN personnel at specific times.
  • D, in Switzerland, for goods reception at specific times.
  • E, in France, for French-resident CERN personnel at specific times. Controlled by customs personnel.[24] Named “Porte Charles de Gaulle” in recognition of his role in the creation of CERN.[25]
  • Inter-site tunnel, in France, for equipment transfer to and from CERN sites in France by personnel with a specific permit. This is the only permitted route for such transfers. Under the CERN treaty, no taxes are payable when such transfers are made. Controlled by customs personnel.[24]

CERN’s main site, from Switzerlandlooking towards France

The SPS and LEP/LHC tunnels are almost entirely outside the main site, and are mostly buried under French farmland and invisible from the surface. However, they have surface sites at various points around them, either as the location of buildings associated with experiments or other facilities needed to operate the colliders such as cryogenic plants and access shafts. The experiments are located at the same underground level as the tunnels at these sites.

Three of these experimental sites are in France, with ATLAS in Switzerland, although some of the ancillary cryogenic and access sites are in Switzerland. The largest of the experimental sites is the Prévessin site, also known as the North Area, which is the target station for non-collider experiments on the SPS accelerator. Other sites are the ones which were used for the UA1, UA2 and the LEP experiments (the latter which will be used for LHC experiments).

Outside of the LEP and LHC experiments, most are officially named and numbered after the site where they were located. For example, NA32 was an experiment looking at the production of charmed particles and located at the Prévessin (North Area) site while WA22 used the Big European Bubble Chamber (BEBC) at the Meyrin (West Area) site to examine neutrino interactions. The UA1 and UA2 experiments were considered to be in the Underground Area, i.e. situated underground at sites on the SPS accelerator.

Most of the roads on the CERN campus are named after famous physicists, such as Richard Feynman, Niels Bohr, and Albert Einstein.

§Participation and funding[edit]

§Member states and budget[edit]

Member states of CERN and current enlargement agenda

  CERN members
  Accession in progress
  Declared intent to join

Since its foundation by 12 members in 1954, CERN regularly accepted new members. All new members have remained in the organization continuously since their accession, except Spain and Yugoslavia. Spain first joined CERN in 1961, withdrew in 1969, and rejoined in 1983. Yugoslavia was a founding member of CERN but left in 1961. Initially only West Germany was a (founding) member of CERN. Of the twenty members, 18 are European Union member states. Switzerland and Norway are not. Israel joined CERN as a full member on 6 January 2014,[26] becoming the first (and currently only) non-European member.[27]

As of 2014, CERN receives contributions from states with a total population of about 517 million people. Averaged across those states, the contribution per person in 2014 is about 2.2 CHF/year.

Member state Status since Contribution
(million CHFfor 2014)
Contribution
(fraction of total for 2014)
Contribution per capita[note 1]
(CHF/person for 2014)
Founding Members[note 2]
 Belgium 29 September 1954 30.5 2.5% 2.7
 Denmark 29 September 1954 19.3 1.6% 3.4
 France 29 September 1954 169.2 14.0% 2.6
 Germany 29 September 1954 222.9 18.5% 2.8
 Greece 29 September 1954 18.0 1.5% 1.6
 Italy 29 September 1954 126.2 10.5% 2.1
 Netherlands 29 September 1954 50.6 4.2% 3.0
 Norway 29 September 1954 28.0 2.3% 5.4
 Sweden 29 September 1954 28.7 2.4% 3.0
  Switzerland 29 September 1954 40.0 3.3% 4.9
 United Kingdom 29 September 1954 152.6 12.7% 2.4
Acceded Members[note 3]
 Austria 1 June 1959 24.4 2.0% 2.9
 Spain 1 January 1983 91.1 7.6% 2.0
 Portugal 1 January 1986 13.2 1.1% 1.3
 Finland 1 January 1991 15.3 1.3% 2.8
 Poland 1 July 1991 29.3 2.4% 0.8
 Hungary 1 July 1992 7.1 0.6% 0.7
 Czech Republic 1 July 1993 11.3 0.9% 1.1
 Slovakia 1 July 1993 5.5 0.5% 1.0
 Bulgaria 11 March 1999 3.1 0.3% 0.4
 Israel 6 January 2014[26] 22.1 1.8% 2.7
Candidate Member[note 4]
 Romania 11 February 2010[32] 7.9 0.7% 0.4
Associate Member in the pre-stage to Membership[note 4]
 Serbia 15 March 2012[33] 1.0 0.1% 0.1
Associate Members
 Cyprus 5 October 2012[34]  %
 Ukraine 3 October 2013[35]  %
 Turkey 12 May 2014[36]  %
 Pakistan 19 June 2014[37]  %
Total Members, Candidates and Associates 1,117.5[38] 92.7%
 European Union[39] 1 July 1985[40] 18.8 1.6%
Other income 69.2 5.7%
Total CERN 1,205.5[39] 100.0%
  1. Jump up^ Based on the population in 2014.[28]
  2. Jump up^ 12 founding members drafted the Convention for the Establishment of a European Organization for Nuclear Research which entered into force on 29 September 1954.[29][30]
  3. Jump up^ Acceded members became CERN member states upon signing an accession agreement.[31]
  4. ^ Jump up to:a b Additional contribution from Candidates for Accession and Associate Member States.[31]

§Enlargement[edit]

Associate Members, Candidates (note that dates are initial signature, not of ratification):

  •  Romania, first approved by CERN Council in December 2008,[41] became a candidate for accession to CERN on 11 February 2010[32] and will become a full member in 2015.[42]
  •  Serbia became a candidate for accession to CERN on 19 December 2011, signed an association agreement on 10 January 2012[43][44] and became an official “Associate Member in the pre-stage to Membership” on 15 March 2012.[33]
  •  Cyprus became an associate member on 5 October 2012.[34]
  •  Ukraine became an associate member on 3 October 2013.[35]
  •  Brazil was approved by CERN Council on 13 December 2013[45] to become the first Latin American associate member. As of July 2014, Brazil still needs to sign and ratify its accession agreement.[46]
  •  Turkey became an associate member on 12 May 2014.[36]
  •  Pakistan became an associate member on 19 June 2014.[37]

More countries have confirmed their wish to become members and are awaiting approval from the CERN Council:[47]

  •  Slovenia, which cooperates scientifically with CERN since 1991, applied for membership in 2009.[48]
  •  Russia, working with CERN in practice since 1959 (as the former Soviet Union) and currently an observer state, formally applied for membership in 2012.[49]

§International relations[edit]

A world map highlighting the nature of relations of nations with CERN.
  CERN member states: 21 c.
  Accession in progress: 3 c.
  Declared intent to join: 2 c.
  Observers: 4 c. + EU
  Cooperation agreement: 35 c. + Slovenia, Cyprus, Turkey
  Scientific contacts: 19 c.

Four countries have observer status:[50]

  •  Turkey – from 1961 to 2014 Turkey became associate member and will become full member in 2016
  •  Russia – since 1993
  •  Japan – since 1995
  •  United States – since 1997
  •  India – since 2002

Also observers are the following international organizations:

Non-Member States (with dates of Co-operation Agreements) currently involved in CERN programmes are:

  •  Algeria
  •  Argentina – 11 March 1992
  •  Armenia – 25 March 1994
  •  Australia – 1 November 1991
  •  Azerbaijan – 3 December 1997
  •  Belarus – 28 June 1994
  •  Bolivia
  •  Brazil – 19 February 1990 & October 2006
  •  Canada – 11 October 1996
  •  Chile – 10 October 1991
  •  China – 12 July 1991, 14 August 1997 & 17 February 2004
  •  Colombia – 15 May 1993
  •  Croatia – 18 July 1991
  •  Cyprus – 14 February 2006
  •  Ecuador
  •  Egypt – 16 January 2006
  •  Estonia – 23 April 1996
  •  Georgia – 11 October 1996
  •  Iceland – 11 September 1996
  •  Iran – 5 July 2001
  •  Jordan – 12 June 2003.[51] MoU with Jordan and SESAME, in preparation of a cooperation agreement signed in 2004.[52]
  •  Lithuania – 9 November 2004
  •  Macedonia – 27 April 2009[53]
  •  Malta – 10 January 2008[54][55]
  •  Mexico – 20 February 1998
  •  Montenegro – 12 October 1990
  •  Morocco – 14 April 1997
  •  New Zealand – 4 December 2003
  •  Peru – 23 February 1993
  •  Romania – 1 October 1991. Since 12 December 2008 it has the Status of Candidate for Accession to Membership.
  •  Saudi Arabia – 21 January 2006
  •  Slovenia – 7 January 1991
  •  South Africa – 4 July 1992
  •  South Korea – 25 October 2006.
  •  Ukraine – 2 April 1993
  •  United Arab Emirates – 18 January 2006
  •  Vietnam

CERN also has scientific contacts with the following countries:[56]

  •  Cuba
  •  Ghana
  •  Ireland
  •  Latvia
  •  Lebanon
  •  Madagascar
  •  Malaysia
  •  Mozambique
  •  Palestinian Authority
  •  Philippines
  •  Qatar
  •  Rwanda
  •  Singapore
  •  Sri Lanka
  •  Taiwan
  •  Thailand
  •  Tunisia
  •  Uzbekistan
  •  Venezuela

International research institutions, such as CERN, can aid in science diplomacy.[57]

§Public exhibits[edit]

Facilities at CERN open to the public include:

§In popular culture[edit]

line 18 goes to CERN

The statue of Shiva engaging in the Natarajadance presented by theDepartment of Atomic Energyof India.

  • CERN’s Large Hadron Collider is the subject of a (scientifically accurate) rap video starring Katherine McAlpine with some of the facility’s staff.[61][62]
  • CERN is depicted in an episode of South Park (Season 13, Episode 6) called “Pinewood Derby”. Randy Marsh, the father of one of the main characters, breaks into the “Hadron Particle Super Collider in Switzerland” and steals a “superconducting bending magnet created for use in tests with particle acceleration” to use in his son Stan’s Pinewood Derby racer. Randy breaks into CERN dressed in disguise as Princess Leia from the Star Wars saga. The break-in is captured on surveillance tape which is then broadcast on the news.[63]
  • John Titor, a self-proclaimed time traveler, alleged that CERN would invent time travel in 2001.
  • CERN is depicted in the visual novel/anime series Steins;Gate as SERN, a shadowy organization that has been researching time travel in order to restructure and control the world.
  • In a documentary entitled Particle Fever, CERN is explored throughout the inside, and depicts the events surrounding the discovery of the Higgs Boson in 2013
  • In Dan Brown‘s mystery-thriller novel Angels & Demons, a canister of antimatter is stolen from CERN.[64]
  • In the popular children’s series The 39 Clues, CERN is said to be an Ekaterina stronghold hiding the clue hydrogen.
  • In Robert J. Sawyer‘s science fiction novel Flashforward, at CERN, the Large Hadron Collider accelerator is performing a run to search for the Higgs boson when the entire human race sees themselves twenty-one years and six months in the future.
  • In season 3 episode 15 of the popular TV sitcom The Big Bang Theory titled “The Large Hadron Collision”, Leonard and Rajesh travel to CERN to attend a conference and see the LHC.
  • The 2012 student film Decay, which centers around the idea of the Large Hadron Collider transforming people into zombies, was filmed on location in CERN’s maintenance tunnels.[65]
  • The Compact Muon Solenoid at CERN was used as the basis for the Megadeth‘s Super Collider album cover.
  • In Denpa Kyoushi, the main character is scouted by “CERM”
  • In Super Lovers, Haruko (Ren’s mother) worked at CERN, and Ren was taught by CERN professors
  • CERN forms part of the back story of the massively multiplayer augmented reality game Ingress. [66]

§Associated institutions

Compulsory voting

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Compulsory voting, enforced.
Compulsory voting, not enforced.
Compulsory voting, enforced (only men).
Compulsory voting, not enforced (only men).
Historical: the country had compulsory voting in the past.

ContentsCompulsory voting is a system in which electors are obliged to vote in elections or attend a polling place on voting day. If an eligible voter does not attend a polling place, he or she may be subject to punitive measures such as fines or community service. As of August 2013, 22 countries were recorded as having laws for compulsory voting and 11 of these 22 countries as enforcing these laws in practice.

History[edit]

Athenian democracy held that it was every citizen‘s duty to participate in decision making, but attendance at the assembly was voluntary. Sometimes there was some form of social opprobrium to those not participating. For example, Aristophanes‘s comedy Acharnians 17–22, in the 5th century BC, shows public slaves herding citizens from the agora into the assembly meeting place (pnyx) with a red-stained rope. Those with red on their clothes were fined.[2] This usually happened if fewer than 6,000 people were in attendance, and more were needed for the assembly to continue.

Arguments for[edit]

Supporters of compulsory voting generally look upon voter participation as a civic duty, similar to taxation, jury duty, compulsory education or military service; one of the ‘duties to community’ mentioned in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.[3] They believe that by introducing an obligation to vote, it helps to overcome the occasional inconvenience that voting imposes on an individual in order to produce governments with more stability, legitimacy and a genuine mandate to govern, which in turn benefits that individual even if their preferred candidate or party isn’t elected into power.

Compulsory voting systems can confer a high degree of political legitimacybecause they result in high voter turnout.[4] The victorious candidate represents a majority of the population, not just the politically motivated individuals who would vote without compulsion.[5]

Compulsory voting also prevents disenfranchisement of the socially disadvantaged. In a similar way that the secret ballot is designed to prevent interference with the votes actually cast, compelling voters to the polls for an election reduces the impact that external factors may have on an individual’s capacity to vote such as the weather, transport, or restrictive employers. If everybody must vote, restrictions on voting are easily identified and steps are taken to remove them. Countries with compulsory voting generally hold elections on a Saturday or Sunday to ensure that working people can fulfill their duty to cast their vote. Postal and pre-poll voting is provided to people who cannot vote on polling day, and mobile voting booths may also be taken to old age homes, hospitals and remote communities to cater for immobilized citizens.

If voters do not want to support any given choice, they may cast spoilt votes or blank votes. According to compulsory voting supporters, this is preferred to not voting at all because it ensures there is no possibility that the person has been intimidated or prevented from voting should they wish. In certain jurisdictions, voters have the option to vote none of the above if they do not support any of the candidates to indicate clear dissatisfaction with the candidate list rather than simple apathy at the whole process.

Another perceived benefit of the large turnout produced by compulsory voting is that it becomes more difficult for extremist or special interest groups to get themselves into power or to influence mainstream candidates. Under a non-compulsory voting system, if fewer people vote then it is easier for lobby groups to motivate a small section of the people to the polls and influence the outcome of the political process. The outcome of an election where voting is compulsory reflects more of the will of the people (Who do I want to lead the country?) rather than reflecting who was more able to convince people to take time out of their day to cast a vote (Do I even want to vote today?).

Other advantages to compulsory voting are the stimulation of broader interest politics, as a sort of civil education and political stimulation, which creates a better informed population. Also, since campaign funds are not needed to goad voters to the polls, the role of money in politics decreases. High levels of participation decreases the risk of political instability created by crises or charismatic but sectionally focused demagogues.[5]

There is also a correlation between compulsory voting, when enforced strictly, and improved income distribution, as measured by the Gini coefficient and the bottom income quintiles of the population.[6]

Arguments against[edit]

Voting may be seen as a civic right rather than a civic duty. While citizens may exercise their civil rights (free speech, right to an attorney, etc.) they are not compelled to. Furthermore, compulsory voting may infringe other rights. For example,Jehovah’s Witnesses and most Christadelphians believe that they should not participate in political events. Forcing them to vote ostensibly denies them their freedom of religious practice. In some countries with compulsory voting, Jehovah’s Witnesses and others may be excused on these grounds. If however they are forced to go to the polling place, they can still use a blank or invalid vote.

Similarly, compulsory voting may be seen as an infringement of Article 2 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which guarantees freedom of political opinion and thus the right of citizens to believe in a political system other than a democratic one, such as an absolute monarchy. However, it may also be argued that citizens may legitimately be required to vote since the right to believe in a different political system does not conflict with the obligation to conform with legal requirements of the system in place.

Another argument against compulsory voting, prevalent among legal scholars in the United States, is that it is essentially a compelled speech act, which violates freedom of speech because the freedom to speak necessarily includes the freedomnot to speak.[7]

Some do not support the idea of voters being compelled to vote for candidates they have no interest in or knowledge of. Others may be well-informed, but have no preference for any particular candidate, or may have no wish to give support to the incumbent political system. In compulsory voting areas, such people often vote at random simply to fulfill legal requirements: the so-called donkey vote may account for 1–2% of votes in these systems[citation needed], which may affect the electoral process. Similarly, citizens may vote with a complete absence of knowledge of any of the candidates or deliberately skew their ballot to slow the polling process or disrupt the election.

Low voter participation in a voluntary election may not be the result of political apathy. It may be simply an expression of the citizenry’s political will, indicating satisfaction with the political establishment in an electorate.[citation needed]

The Australian system of preferential voting means a person’s vote usually ends up favouring one of the two main political parties, even though the voter may not wish to advantage either. Former Australian opposition leader Mark Latham urged Australians to lodge blank votes for the 2010 election. He stated the government should not force citizens to vote or threaten them with a fine.[8] At the 2013 federal election, despite the threat of a non-voting fine of up to $170,[9] there was a turnout of only 92%,[10] of whom 6% lodged either informal or blank ballot papers.[11] In the corresponding Senate election, contested by over 50 groups,[12] legitimate manipulation of the group voting tickets and single transferable vote routing resulted in the election of one senator, Ricky Muir of the Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party, who had initially received only 0.5% of first-preference support.[13] The system was accused of undermining the entitlement of voters “to be able to make real choices, not forced ones—and to know who they really are voting for.”[14]

By countries[edit]

Historical[edit]

  • Austria – introduced in 1924 and exercised during 1925 presidential elections
  • Chile – removed from the Constitution and replaced with voluntary voting in 2009; voluntary voting was regulated and put into practice in 2012; all eligible citizens over 17 are automatically enrolled (only those over 18 on election day may vote; although the act of voting itself is voluntary, polling officer duties are not if chosen by a commission for the job)[15]
  • Fiji – Abolished in 2014 [16]
  • Italy – Introduced in 1945, abolished in 1993.
  • Netherlands – introduced 1917 along with universal suffrage, abolished in 1967.
  • Spain – 1907–1923, but not enforced
  • US State of Georgia in 1777 (10 years before the adoption of the federal Constitution of 1787):

    Every person absenting himself from an election, and shall neglect to give in his or their ballot at such election, shall be subject to a penalty not exceeding five pounds; the mode of recovery and also the appropriation thereof, to be pointed out and directed by act of the legislature: Provided, nevertheless, That a reasonable excuse shall be admitted.

    Constitution of Georgia, 5 February 1777, Article XII [17]

This provision was omitted from the revised Georgia constitution of 1789.[citation needed]

Present day[edit]

As of August 2013, 22 countries were recorded as having compulsory voting.[1] Of these, only 10 countries (and one Swiss canton) enforce it. Of the 30 member states of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, 10 had forms of compulsory voting.[19]

Enforced[edit]

These are the 11 countries that enforce compulsory voting:

  • Argentina – Introduced in 1912.[20] Compulsory for citizens between 18 and 70 years old, non-compulsory for those older than 70 and between 16 and 18. (However in primaries, citizens under 70 may refuse to vote, if they formally express their decision to the electoral authorities, at least 48 hours before the election. This is valid only for the subsequent primary, and needs to be repeated each time the voter wishes not to participate.)
  • Australia – Introduced in 1924.[20] Compulsory for federal and state elections for citizens 18 years of age and above. The requirement is for the person to enroll, attend a polling station and have their name marked off the electoral roll as attending, receive a ballot paper and take it to an individual voting booth, mark it, fold the ballot paper and place it in the ballot box. The act does not explicitly state that a choice must be made, it only states that the ballot paper be ‘marked’. According to the act how a person marks the paper is completely up to the individual. In some states, local council elections are also compulsory.[21] At the 2010 Tasmanian state election, with a turnout of 335,353 voters, about 6,000 people were fined $26 for not voting, and about 2,000 paid the fine.[22]
  • Brazil[23] – Compulsory for literate citizens between 18 and 70 years old. Non-compulsory for Brazilian Youth age 16-17 or over 70 or illiterate citizens of any age. A justification form for not voting can be filled at election centers and post offices.
  • Cyprus – Introduced in 1960.[20]
  • Ecuador – Introduced in 1936.[20] Compulsory for citizens between 18 and 65 years old; non-compulsory for citizens aged 16–18, illiterate people, and those older than 65.
  • Liechtenstein
  • Luxembourg – Voluntary for those over 70.
  • Nauru – Introduced in 1965.[20]
  • Peru[24] – Introduced in 1933.[20] Compulsory for citizens between 18 and 70 years old, non-compulsory for those older than 70.
  • Singapore – Compulsory for citizens above 21 years old on 1 January of the year of election
  • Uruguay – Introduced in 1934, but not put into practice until 1970.[20]
  • Schaffhausen canton in Switzerland has compulsory voting – Introduced to Switzerland in 1904, but abolished in all other cantons by 1974.[20]

Not enforced[edit]

Countries that have compulsory voting on the law books but do not enforce it:

Measures to encourage voting[edit]

Although voting in a country may be compulsory, penalties for failing to vote are not always strictly enforced. In Australiaand Brazil, providing a legitimate reason for not voting (such as being sick or outside the country) is accepted. In Argentina, those who were ill on voting day are excused by requesting a doctor to prove their condition; those over 500 km (310 mi) away from their voting place are also excused by asking for a certificate at a police station near where they are. Belgianvoters can vote in an embassy if they are abroad or can empower another voter to cast the vote in their name; the voter must give a “permission to vote” and carry a copy of the eID card and their own on the actual elections.

States that sanction nonvoters with fines generally impose small or nominal penalties. However, penalties for failing to vote are not limited to fines and legal sanctions. Belgian voters who repeatedly fail to vote in elections may be subject todisenfranchisement. Singapore voters who fail to vote in a general election or presidential election will be subjected to disenfranchisement until a valid reason is given or a fine is paid. Goods and services provided by public offices may be denied to those failing to vote in Peru and Greece. In Brazil, people who fail to vote in an election are barred from obtaining a passport and subject to other restrictions until settling their situation before an electoral court or after they have voted in the two most recent elections. If a Bolivian voter fails to participate in an election, the person may be denied withdrawal of the salary from the bank for three months.[28][33]

As Germany tries to stop The new PEGIDA movements spreading throughout Europe

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The PEGIDA anti-Islamization movement has announced a plan for a demonstration in SWITZERLAND on Feb. 16, 2015.

Resistance Republicaine (translation)  Already a presence on social networks for some time, the Swiss version of the German anti-Islam movement has gone from virtual to real. An association was created on Friday in Zurich, reports SonntagsZeitung. The first event will take place on February 16 at a location to be determined, according to its organizers who remain anonymous.

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PEGIDA Switzerland? According to the statutes circulating on the Internet, its goals are primarily identity. This is to “fight against radicalism, it is political or religious” to “resist against the violent and misogynist ideologies but not against integrated Muslims living here.” The association also wants to “implement the SVP initiative against mass immigration”, “protect our Judeo-Christian culture”, “burka ban” or “refuse imams schools.”

Controversial in Germany, PEGIDA Switzerland, already has the support of the National Councillor Walter Wobmann (UDC / SO), member of the Committee Egerkingen who launched the initiative against minarets, or the President of the Young SVP. The identity and number of members of the new association, however, has not been made public as yet.

PEGIDA SPAIN has also been born. No date yet announced  for its first demonstration but will let you know when there is one.

Here’s a listed Facebook page: PEGIDA ESPANA

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By BareNakedIslam