The Taming of Islam

It seems true that while Islam as a religion is expanding and becoming larger and more spread, its role and influence are being compromised by its relations with imperialist forces and its involvement in merciless crimes and atrocious behavior whether in Libya or -now – in Syria . Thus the “religion of Islam” has- in falling under western influences – parted with the true message and values to serve its coexistence with the colonialist west .

“Islam” is being used to subjugate peoples and to make possible for the usurpers to usurp the resources and land of Muslim people and is being used to create havoc and social unrest and internal wars .

This is the challenge that is confronting Islam and exposing the religion world wide which is in the first place an attack on real Islam and Muslims people. Islam is under attack- for sure- and for this the world Order has mobilized thugs who kill and slaughter in the name of the religion .

If this proves anything it proves that true Islam is the real enemy to the powerful western states . Islam- like that of Erdogan- is a friend to the world order because it recognizes Israel and normalizes with it; and the same goes for many Gulf states who have completely surrendered to the will of their masters of the western world .

The Arab spring has brought to power the Muslim forces belonging to a certain sect to fight with it the other sect . If Islam is targeted , it is not any Islam . It is the Islam of the Resistance, the Islam that has defeated Israel and turned Iran in to an independent strong country in spite of the world order. This is the Islam that is intended. . We need the quality of Islam and not the quantity . Iran has proved to be up the challenge and has become a fully equipped country capable of defending itself and of also promoting Muslim and Arab causes tirelessly . It has raised high the banner of committed Islam whereas the other Muslim forces – brought to power by the Arab springs- are exposing Islam rather than promoting it ; they are promoting normalization with Israel instead and have developed strong ties with USA while keeping Gaza under siege .

The Palestinians who –like HAMAS- are supposed to be the father of the child- not only have relinquished the struggle and turned to negotiations with the enemy, but are fighting the resisting forces on the ground like in Syria.. .What kind of Islam is this that normalizes and recognizes Israel? Is this Islam at all ? Now that the hajj to the Holy shrine in Mekka is drawing near, we will see millions flocking to perform the ritual from the four sides to Mekka while the first Qibla is under occupation .

Muslims need to connect to real Islam to be educated to the reality of their religion ; there is no avail to turning their religion into something that suits their personal ambitions and the ambitions of the usurpers of this world.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian  
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

New Massacre in Al-Haidariya, Armed Group Assure Attacking Town

Local Editor

Crimes against civilians continue in Syria as an armed terrorist group committed earlier Sunday a massacre against citizens of Al-Haidariya village in Al-Qseir countryside in Homs province, killing over 17 people and kidnapping a number that is not specified yet.

According to Syrian news agency SANA, an armed group early Sunday attacked Al-Haidariya village, shelling it with mortars and machineguns, and killing 17 people.

The news agency quoted a source as saying that “the armed group also perpetrated looting and theft acts in the village.”
For their part, Al-Farouq brigades assured in a statement published in their website that they attacked Al-Haidariya village, claiming that they “completely liberated it”.

The statement said that “the heroes” of Al-Farouq brigades surrounded Al-Ghassaniyah village, and fired rockets at a school that they later broke into, indicating that they “advanced after that towards Al-Haidariya to liberate it”.
Meanwhile, units of the armed forces clashed with an armed group in Bab Hud and Bab Al-Turkman neighborhoods in Homs city, killing a number of them.

SANA further reported that the Armed Forces destroyed six cars equipped with DShK machineguns and killed terrorists in Al-Jandoul roundabout, Baleh town, and Daret Izzeh in Aleppo.

Armed groups were also targeted in Sheikh Suleiman area and in Tal-Abiad town and its countryside in Raqqa province.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

Egypt’s Morsi the New Mubarak

Is Egypt’s Morsi the New Mubarak?

By:Alaa al-Aswani posted on Sunday, Sep 30, 2012

I did not vote for President Mohammed Morsi. Before the elections, I appealed to the Egyptians through As-Safir to boycott in protest of Ahmed Shafiq’s nomination for the presidency before the 35 corruption cases against him were investigated. The boycott failed.

Millions of Egyptians saw that they had no choice but to vote for Morsi, not because they agreed with his ideas or those of the Muslim Brotherhood, but simply to prevent the restoration of Mubarak’s regime at the hands of Shafiq. So Morsi became president and I said that the will of the people must be respected. I thought it unfair to attack President Morsi before he was given a chance.
But three months after he took office his political orientation has become clear. Unfortunately, his actions and decisions have been disturbing, as exemplified by the following:
 1) One of the most important causes of the revolution was the Interior Ministry’s brutal repression. The people demanded that the state security apparatuses be eliminated, that the Interior Ministry be cleansed of Mubarak’s corrupt men and that those responsible for torture be held accountable.
However, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) refused to make any changes to the Interior Ministry during the transitional period. Then, after Morsi became president, we were surprised that he too refused to cleanse the Interior Ministry. Instead, he made use of the old leadership, such as Interior Minister Ahmed Gamal al-Din.
It seemed as though a bargain had been struck between the Brotherhood and the Interior Ministry’s men whereby the latter would retain their posts and privileges and remain exempt from accountability for their crimes in exchange for them restoring security and protecting the interests of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Security was somewhat restored but acts of repression have also come back. Egyptians are again being humiliated in police stations.
Last week, an engineer named Mohammad Fahim was driving in Mansoura. A police officer stopped him and asked for his driver’s license. Mohammad noticed that he had forgotten it at home so he politely asked the officer to permit him to go home with a police officer to get the license.
The officer said: “That kind of conversation is more appropriate with your mother.”
When Mohammad objected to this slight, the officer beat him, had his men lay Mohammad on the ground for a while, then took him to the police station, where they tortured him, fabricated a charge against him and transferred him to the prosecution. He was then remanded in custody pending further investigation.
There have been many similar incidents, which indicates that President Morsi — like President Mubarak — doesn’t mind that citizens are being tortured and are having their dignity violated.
In fact, the dignity of the Egyptians abroad is not better than the ones at home. It is well known that the Saudi legal system does not conform to international standards of justice. But even though the Saudi legal system does not touch foreigners, hundreds of Egyptians are held in Saudi prisons either without trial or as a result of unfair trials.
Among them is Ms. Najla Wafa, who is being flogged every week because she had a fallout with one of the many princesses from the Saudi royal family.
There is also the case of Ahmed al-Gizawy. This lawyer is being tried on trumped-up charges because he dared to speak about human rights violations against Egyptians in Saudi Arabia.
During President Morsi’s first visit there, he exchanged hugs and had his picture taken with Saudi officials. Yet he did nothing to help his citizens who are detained in Saudi Arabia. Moreover, in Egyptian military prison there are thousands who have been detained during protests on false charges.
The 8 April officers were arrested for taking part in a demonstration on 8 April 2011, to protest an attack on a sit-in.
There also the “April 8 officers” who joined the demonstrations in Tahrir Square. They were arrested and subjected to severe torture. They are still locked up. Before he was elected, President Morsi promised to release them as soon as he took office, but so far he has not done so.
2) When President Morsi formed the government, we were surprised to see that it included several ministers from the former regime. This indicates that Mubarak and Morsi’s policies are not very different.
egyptian, workers, demand, a, say, in, the, new, egypt, under, president, morsi,
 
President Mubarak was partial toward the rich, whom he tried to please and help increase their wealth, while he didn’t care about the poor’s suffering. Morsi is unfortunately no different than Mubarak in that regard. Morsi is now close to the businessmen who belonged to Mubarak’s regime. When he visits foreign countries, he takes them with him aboard his plane.
As he tries to deal with the economic crisis, Morsi is not considering cutting state spending nor laying off advisers who are unduly being paid millions. He is not considering imposing a progressive tax on the rich nor stopping gas and electricity subsidies to factories that sell their goods at international rates. President Morsi is not considering making such moves because they threaten the interests of the rich.
He borrows like Mubarak: he requested $4.8 billion from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) without revealing the loan’s terms to the public.
We should mention that former Prime Minister Kamal Ganzouri also wanted to borrow from the IMF but at the time the Brotherhood strongly objected, saying that borrowing would increase Egypt’s debt and that paying interest is against Islamic law.
But now, here they are cheering president Morsi’s loan request, which they suddenly discovered to be in conformity with Islamic law because “it is a necessity,” and the ends justify the means. It seems the Brotherhood has multiple doctrines from which it picks and chooses whatever suits its interests.
 
3) The Mubarak regime used to control the media and the national newspapers, which it utilized to spread lies and depict Mubarak as an inspiring and wise leader. Rather than make the newspapers independent and eliminate the Information Ministry, President Morsi appointed a Brotherhood member as Information Minister and the Brotherhood-dominated Shura Council appointed atop the national newspapers new editors who are well aware that they owe their positions to the Muslim Brotherhood.

Egypt’s Information Minister Salah Abdel Maqsood tells
Lebanese TV host
“I wish your questions are not as hot as you are,”

The Brotherhood’s influence over the media is becoming clearer by the day. As it did with Mubarak, state television keeps broadcasting images of President Morsi.
Even the private channels want to solidify their relationship with the Brotherhood. They have started replacing journalists who oppose the Brotherhood with ones who are more friendly to it. Morsi’s recent television interview was an exact copy of Mubarak’s:
 
The president sits majestically and full of confidence, and in front of him sits a TV announcer who is shuddering with fear because he knows that one wrong word could end his career or even his life.
The TV announcer asks the president softball questions and the latter answers with hollow and meaningless slogans. Then suddenly, the announcer looks at the president’s face in wonderment and says:

“Your Excellency works tirelessly for the sake of Egypt. When do you get to rest?”

President Morsi has maintained Mubarak’s corrupt media, which he is now using to his advantage.
 
4) The Constituent Assembly is now controlled by the Muslim Brotherhood. This means that no matter how many hearings and discussions they hold, the Brotherhood’s “supreme guide” will have the final say in determining Egypt’s constitution.
Before he was elected, Morsi promised to make the Constituent Assembly representative of all parts of society. But as usual, he broke that promise and kept the assembly unchanged. The assembly is writing unacceptable articles that limit public freedoms, women’s rights and the freedom of the press.
 
It is likely that the assembly will write a constitution that serves the interests of the Brotherhood and then call for a quick referendum whereby the Brotherhood’s mighty political machine in the mosques would convince the ordinary people that they must approve the constitution to ensure their entry into heaven.
5) President Morsi promised that public freedoms would flourish under his reign. But the opposite has happened.
 
Newspapers were seized and al-Faraeen channel was closed. Regardless of how we felt about that channel, we do not accept that it be closed by an administrative order because then any channel that Morsi does not like can also be closed.
Islam Afifi is accused of insulting Prophet Mohammed .
SORRY, I mean President Mohammed Morsi
There is an Egyptian citizen named Bishwi al-Buhairi who will spend two years in prison for insulting President Morsi on Facebook. There are also senior journalists being tried on the same charge. The charge of “insulting the president” does not exist in a democracy, but president Morsi seems to want to put his opponents in prison. He refuses to decriminalize the so-called “publishing crimes.”
Brotherhood official Mahmoud Ghozlan said that journalists will not be exempt from imprisonment because they are not better than others.
 
This statement betrays Ghozlan’s ignorance on what happens in civilized countries, where writers and journalists are not imprisoned because of their opinions or writings but are punished by paying a fine, if convicted.
Freedoms may not be better under Morsi than under Mubarak. In fact, they could get worse.
6) President Morsi was elected by the people but he also belongs to the Muslim Brotherhood, which is a secret organization and no one knows its rules, regulations or funding sources.
 
We have repeatedly demanded that the Brotherhood’s status be codified and that its funding sources be placed under state supervision.
But it seems that President Morsi prefers to keep the Brotherhood a secret group that supports him from behind the scenes.
The president’s connection with the group has resulted in behavior unacceptable in any democracy.
 
Brotherhood official Khairat Shater behaves as if he were the prime minister. He makes statements on government projects. He travels abroad and meets with foreign officials with which he negotiates and signs agreements. But under what capacity is he doing that?
 
We really don’t know who rules Egypt: President Morsi or the Brotherhood’s supreme guide?
The situation has become worrisome. It seems that after the revolution nothing changed except the president. Mubarak was simply replaced with Morsi.
 
President Morsi moves around guarded by 3000 troops. When he prays at the mosque he prevents police officers from entering the mosque in order to keep the president secure.
When Morsi traveled to Rome he stayed at the same luxury hotel where Mubarak used to stay, costing the state thousands of pounds per night.
The revolution made a great achievement when it deposed Mubarak, tried him and threw him in prison with his followers. The revolution’s task now should be to prevent the Muslim Brotherhood from controlling the state.
If the national forces do not immediately unite to prevent the Muslim Brotherhood from fully controlling the state then we and our children will pay a high price.
 
On the 42nd anniversary of Nasser’s Death: 4 Nasserist Parties merge to stop selling out Egypt
 
The people who made this great revolution are capable of protecting it, God willing.
Democracy is the solution.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog

Ahmadinejad spoke like a Messiah

Posted on September 27, 2012
Yesterday, Iran’s President Dr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad delivered his 8th and last speech at the UN General Assembly meeting in New York City. However, during today’s speech, Ahmadinejad wore two hats; President of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Chairman of the 120-nations Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).

In contrast to early speeches by US president Barack Obama and British prime minister David Cameron, who threatened both Syria and Iran – Ahmadinejad talked about peace and justice. He avoided mentioning US-Israel sponsored bloodshed in Syria or the US-Israel produced provocative anti-Islam movie ‘Innocence of Muslims’. To show their guilty consciences – the US, British, Israeli and Canadian delegates walked out of the forum as soon as Ahmadinejad took the mike. They all accused the Iranian President of spouting “paranoid theories and repulsive slurs against Israel”

Ahmadinejad decried the “current abysmal situation of the world,” saying it resulted from “the self-proclaimed centers of power who have entrusted themselves to the Devil.” He also slammed the“arms race” and “nuclear intimidation” being perpetuated by “hegemonic powers,” as well as “the continued threat by uncivilized Zionists to resort to military action”.

During his address, Ahmadinejad spoke the word “peace” 12 times, “justice” 15 and “love” 13.

On Tuesday, Ahmadinejad met leaders of Jewish, Christian and Muslim faiths including Louis Farrakhan, former US Attorney General Ramsey Clark and Leah Bolger, president of ‘Veterans for Peace‘. Interestingly, all the three are labeled as Israel-haters by the Jewish lobby groups. ”We note that Iran has been a signatory to the NPT since its inception in 1968, even though it does not have a nuclear weapons program. Israel, on the other hand, which is NOT a signatory to the NPT has a fully developed nuclear weapons program, but does not acknowledge that it exists. We also note that Iran fully supports a Nuclear Weapons-Free Middle East Zone, yet this proposal has been dismissed out of hand by Israel, and has been virtually ignored by the U.S. media,” Bolger told the guests.

“The only public figures that are vilified by the press at the UN for raising controversial questions – the alleged enemies of the empire—are Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez and Iran’s Ahmadinejad,” said Mike Berger, a spokesman for 911truth.org. said in 2010.

One problem central to the current tensions is that the US-Israel never accepted the legitimacy of Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution, Ahmadinejiad said, calling for the creation of a new, less polarized world order.

“I do believe the system of empires has reached the end of the road. The world can no longer see an emperor commanding it,” he said.

There is a great article posted on the Washington Blog. Read the article here and see Iran in photos here.

Listen to Ahmadinejad’s speech at the US General Assembly, below.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

Temple of "Israel"

 Nahida the exiled Palestinian

Before proceeding to watch the videos, a small piece of advice might help you cope with the contents and with surviving the aftermath of exposure to such “radiant brilliance”:

Sit in a nice cozy corner, dim the light, snug your favourite cuddly toy, shake off any tensions, relax your body and empty your mind of any negative or positive thoughts… keep it minimalistic; bare and clean.

While watching be careful, try not to exercise any of your mental muscles. Remember to stay as dumb and slow as you possibly can.

Be vigilant, don’t surrender to “fake clues”  that might appear on the way; remember, the first video has absolutely “nothing” to do with the second or third clips, nor does it have anything to do with this presentation. Any temptation to find “non-existing” links is doomed to failure.

The three videos are utterly completely and unequivocally unrelated. It is by sheer coincidence that they landed on the same page here. In real life, their relationship is like chock and cheese.

 Any “far-fetched” thoughts or “pipe-dream” ideas about a somewhat “relationship” of some sort will grant you one of these titles: conspiracy theorist, delusional-paranoid, hateful anti-Semite. Be safe, stay far far away.

 Do not try to link any dots, see any connections between anything or anything else, and most importantly, do not draw any conclusions.

Do not try to remember or ever mention the ideology of the founders of Hollywood as per the first video, nor the disproportionate over-representation. Such information is of no interest to anyone at all. Rather, it is actually irrelevant and useless, bordering on being detrimental/ dangerous, because of its negative affect on equal opportunity and community cohesion.

 Keep in mind that it is absolutely perfectly OK that a specific small minority group gets the monopoly of this magnitude over such a “useless” branch of entertainment. Nothing wrong with that.

 If some questions pop up involuntarily in your head, resist their pushiness by all means possible. Sit in another quiet place, take deep breaths and as you inhale keep repeating calmly: I see no links, I hear no evidence, I speak no offence.

 Be reassured that such kind of “innocent” entertainment has absolutely “zero” influence on the minds of the youth who watch it. It has been made purely for “fun”.

Such “civilized”, highly “evolved” “fine art” should not be linked or accused of influencing the depleted state of mind, the spiritual vacuous conception, the violent behaviour of today’s youth, nor should this refined form of entertainment be linked to the arousal of fear from, and hatred of Islam and Muslims. Such thoughts are extremely offensive for its hazardous nature. Mute and suppress that type of “irresponsible” “uncivilized” thoughts in the cradle.

Now watch with care

.

.

Tunisian Salafist: “The enemy is Ennahda.”

Tunisia’s Political Rancor Cancels Ennahda-Salfist Honeymoon

 



By:Raouf Ben Hedi posted on Saturday, Sep 29, 2012

“The enemy is Ennahda.” That short sentence perfectly summarizes what the Tunisian Salafist movements’ activists and supporters are thinking. Written in the color of blood, that sentence has been everywhere on their social networking pages since late evening Sunday, Sept. 23, when Hassan Brik, the official of the Ansar al-Sharia’s outreach office, was arrested. The Salafists resent the government, the ruling party, and some Ennahda officials who welcomed the arrest.

The honeymoon between Ennahda and its Salafists “progeny” has ended. And so has the impunity that the latter have been enjoying. The government seems to have tightened the screws after the serious incident at the US Embassy. The government mainly accuses Salafist groups for that incident.

This change in tactics by Ennahda has angered Salafist militants. For them, the number one enemy is now Ennahda because that Islamist movement has betrayed the “cause” in order to satisfy the Westerners.

For 10 days, the Salafists saw themselves being turned into scapegoats. They deny being behind the violence that targeted the US embassy.

They say that they have only expressed their anger toward the American “devil” without ever having used violence. They do not understand why they are the only ones being accused while “all segments of society” have gone out to defend Prophet Mohammad against attacks from infidels.


Tensions rose after the killing of one of their members and the attempted arrest of Sheikh Abu Iyad on Friday, Sept. 14.

Their anger was further fueled by statements from Ennahda President Rachid Ghannouchi and from several government members who have promised a severe response to the attack against the US embassy, which the Salafists were quickly accused of.

According to the Salafists, the accusations are baseless and they are outraged that Ali Laarayedh has used the police against them.

Two days after the US Embassy attack, which happened on Sunday, Sept. 16, Sheikh Abu Iyad was sought at the funeral of those who have been “martyred” at the hands of the army and the infidel “taghoot” [tyrant]. That information was according to Shems FM. But the Interior Ministry denied it shortly afterward.

The Salafists, however, confirmed the presence of their leader at the funeral and prepared for a second provocation, which [would] be spectacular. On Monday, Sept. 17, they announced that Abu Iyad will deliver a sermon that day and they gave out the time and place. The mosque where the sermon was to be held was surrounded by the police, but that did not prevent the Salafists from arriving in droves. As was expected, Abu Iyad came and delivered his speech before quietly slipping away from under the noses of the police and special forces. The media, including Al-Jazeera, were present, which prevented the Interior Ministry from denying anything. The Interior Ministry said that it was a tactical decision to avoid a confrontation in the city center.

The Salafist leader rejected the accusations by the government and the ruling party. He declared what, to him, is obvious: The government is nothing compared to the umma [Islamic nation].

Three days later, it was the turn of Hassen Brik, the official of Ansar al-Sharia’s outreach office. He was invited to Shems FM and took the opportunity to defend his comrades and reject the government’s and the ruling party’s “unfounded and defamatory” accusations. He said that the government is employing a double standard. “Why is the law strictly applied against the Salafists but not to the Islamists close to Ennahda?” he asked.

The police reacted by quickly surrounding Shems FM, forcing him to take refuge inside the premises of the radio station. He then called his lawyers and supporters to the rescue. The police backed off. But they arrested him 48 hours later at el-Khadhra city on Sunday, Sept. 23, shortly before 10 p.m. It is still not clear why he was arrested.

The Salafists are only angry with Ennahda. They have no doubt that it is the ruling party that is spearheading the campaign against them.

As of this morning, Monday, Sept. 24, the comments on their Facebook page are about the reaction of the Ennahda official in La Goulette, Nawfel Jebali, who joked about the arrest of Hassan Brik.

Ali Laarayedh (L) Sheikh Abu Iyad (R)

Also on Facebook, they are trying to stir up the crowd with a picture of Jebali. “Today, it is him. Tomorrow, it’s you,” they write. They draw Ennahda’s logo in blood. They exchange a video of the “tyrant” Rachid Ghannouchi, whose discourse has dramatically changed after he came to power. The title of the video is “Tunisia’s tyrant is moving closer to the West by using the blood of Muslims defending their Prophet.”

The Salafists have no doubt that their enemy is Ennahda, which is headed by the duo Rached Ghannouchi and Ali Laarayedh. They are convinced that Ennahda is subservient to the American “satanic enemy.”

Meanwhile, the government and its Ennahda leaders are speaking in two voices. On the one hand, they are trying to placate Westerners by making many interviews and statements that emphasize the primacy of the law and the state.

Rafik Abdessalem was dispatched to Washington to reassure Hillary Clinton who, with a little diplomacy, harshly reprimanded him. They are using the attack on the embassy to demonize the Salafists and the “outlaws.” But on Tunisian media, their discourse is different and they are more or less conciliatory toward the Salafists. During an appearance on the number one public TV station, Rached Ghannouchi even denied an AFP report.

The young Ennahda members are calling for reconciliation with their Salafists “brothers” by indirectly implying that if the Salafists consider Ennahda as their enemy, that would place the Salafists in the same camp with the RCD [the dissolved Constitutional Democratic Rally], the secularists, and the left!

But that argument is not resonating with the angry Salafists.

They are seeing the wave of arrests targeting them. They are comparing it to what is happening in Egypt (where there has been 14 death sentences against Salafists) and they fear that their turn is coming soon. They are preparing, unless all that is just an act!
 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

Damascus to Ankara: We’ll Arm Every Kurdish Man with A Rocket

Local Editor
 
The United States has called for a contact with Syria at the United Nations, as Damascus told Ankara it was heading to arm Kurds, Nidal Hamade wrote in his “Friday Stance” at al-Manar Website.

The US delegation that took part in the UN General Assembly’s meeting has asked for a contact with the Syrian delegation through Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

Arab sources in France told al-Manar Website that the US wanted to discuss the issue of Syria’s chemical weapons.

According to the sources, Syria stressed, with a Russian guarantee, that these weapons would not be used in any mean inside Syria during the conflict between the government and the militant opposition which has been supported by the US and its Arab and Turkish allies.

The Arab sources said that the Syrian delegation stressed that the chemical weapons have been secured and far from danger, and it would not be used but in case of foreign attack against Syria. And in this case, the countries which have been inciting and taking part in this attack, would be a “legitimate target” for the Syrian rockets which are loaded with chemical warheads, including countries neighboring Syria.

 
 


The Arab sources noted that the Zionist entity and Turkey were definite targets for the non-traditional Syrian rockets in case of foreign military intervention in Syria, something Qatari Emir and Arab League Chief Nabil al-Arabi have called for in the UN.

Turkish soldiersIn the same context, Kurdish sources close to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Kurdish Democratic Union Party in Syria, which is considered as the Syrian branch for the PKK, said that Syria has sent a letter to Turkey saying that the Turkish interference in Syria, which reached the extent of a direct military interference on the border and Idlib, would prompt Damascus to arm every Kurdish man in both Turkey and Syria.

The Kurdish source added that the regime in Syria is heading towards arming the Kurdish militants with heavy and advanced weapons including cornette rockets which the Kurds need during their fight against Ankara, in addition to mortar bombs and many other weapons and equipments.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

World. . . Be Warned

Nahida the exiled Palestinian

When you wake up one day
 Into your nightmare
 When you hear hordes of lunatics call for war

When freaks shriek “Apocalypse Now”

When Luciferians shout:  “End it All… End it all”
When you hear our planet sobbing
When the oceans cry of pain
When Cain kills Abel many times over

When our children lose their compass
When excited and delighted as they play soldiers

When their inspiration “shoot and kill”

When they see blood, a type of humour

 and horror movies are entertaining

 When their lives have no meaning

When hues of violence thrive and prosper

When abrasion called beauty

When mutilation praised as fashion
Inflicting harm becomes “my choice”
 Hurting self is a form of “art”
Hurling insults is “my freedom”
When babies are used to sell and buy
When tiny babes are tricked into molestation

When innocent girls are sexualized

When their purity is vandalized
When truth-seekers are chastised 
When being dumbed down is glorified

When truth-tellers… ostracized
 When the righteous criminalized 
Then hear me O World

BE WARNED
Await the hurricane

Let it not be forgotten

The darker it becomes 
The closer is the dawn

Remember

Rainbows always come
After the storm

Three Random Reflections on the Lebanese Press


People walk past a newsstand in Hamra street, Beirut. (Photo: Marwan Tahtah)
 
Published Saturday, September 29, 2012
 
Joseph’s Legacy
 
The real debaters have disappeared. The death of Joseph Samaha drained the Arab press. He confounded his adversaries even in death. He diminished them. Many were relieved when Joseph died because he showed them up so much. But without the incentive to match him, in order to counter him, they deteriorated, and have continued to do so.
 
There are no initiators left in the Arab press today. There are no advocates of new ideas, just hordes of commentators on political events. You can predict their conclusions before you begin reading their texts. You gain nothing from them, other than fulfilling your professional obligation to read this or that writer. None have any fresh thoughts, themes or even theories to offer. All revolve within the circles they have turned in since they decided to adhere to this line or that.
 
Many – very many – used to know Joseph. Some feel they have a share in him. It is not in the least bit complicated to define his legacy. It doesn’t matter what any of us may claim he told us or said he wanted to do. The man used to produce an article for us every morning. If we love and believe him, we should all concur that this is his only legacy.
The stagnation of the Lebanese press was what most motivated Joseph to write his version of One Thousand and One Nights. But his death undid the magic, and the creativity went out of the Beirut press again. Joseph was laid to rest before he could see the army of imitators – some not very knowledgeable, experienced or educated, and some whose problem is simply that they deem themselves too knowledgeable for the public good.
 

Hazem Saghiyeh and Co.

 
Assembled on the opposite bank are members of the Veterans’ Club of the “Serving the Peoples from Afar” society. Among the shivering congregation, I can only make out Hazem Saghiyeh. His face is clear. He wears no mask or make-up, and appears authentic, unlike the cut-price imitations that surround him.
 
Hazem’s return to Beirut provided him with a sun to keep out the cold, but not to give him a tan. He remains the “White Man” he likes to be.
 
But it seems he has been afflicted by the acting bug. Just as you switch between channels and find the same the same actor playing different roles, we have started reading different versions of Hazem.
 
Remaining resolute in al-Hayat was no longer enough. The days of spending long hours far from the clamor, listening to the sound of pen scraping on paper, were over. With the Arab world lost to the conquests of the guardians of the faith, his efforts had gone the way of the colored revolutions. And as he is under doctor’s orders not to utter the name of Saudi Arabia, he had to acclimatize to Beirut.
In debauched Beirut, Hazem presented us with a second version of himself: in Now Lebanon. And how “now” he is there. You would think he was writing on the run. He pens a single open sentence, as though the shopkeeper is hurrying him up before closing-time. He is clear about what he means. He does not stray politically, and does enough to appease one publisher. But his “Lebanese” terminology loses him the distinction he once had from the March 14 juveniles. He might be acting on the assumption that any comparison would be unthinkable. But his fat-free writing does him, and us, an injustice. Hazem is putting us on an even “lighter” diet than the doctor recommended.
 
Then he appears in a third version as a keyboard warrior. This obliges him to be quick, and makes his luck contingent on a brief phrase. But the adolescent revealed in his comments is not always amusing. He justifies that on the grounds that it’s a rule of joining the Facebook club to abandon any semblance of seriousness or discretion in choosing terms.
 
Yet he remains the best member of the Veterans’ Club, and certainly better than his students, or those who try to vie with him in search of a liberalism that lost its way between the cafes of the last pavement.
 
“Like”
 
Suddenly, everyone – the veteran and new generations alike of journalists, intellectuals, thinkers and commentators – discovered a trick that works so long as the electricity does: a virtual wall that they keep themselves busy writing on.
 
It doesn’t even need to be cleaned up after they have soiled it. This wall has turned everyone back into kids on the street. Except that they don’t need the night to hide by. They can do it openly, with signatures added.
 
The walls impose themselves on everyone. They are part of the cause of the introversion that is becoming prevalent these days. An entire generation or more fools itself that it has an army of friends.
 
This virtual game is filled with temptations. People stop thinking of it as virtual: Look at the picture; Look what I did, or we did, today. There’s no longer any need to pay a visit to make sure. No need to waste time or effort making direct contact. No need to read facial expressions. You have to imagine what face someone makes when they read you, are impressed, and give you a “Like” – or when they attack someone or other… or when doing whatever else they might be doing with themselves as they make sarcastic comments.
You can now claim proud ownership of your own site, or at least a share in one. Paper, envelopes, and postmen and boxes can be dispensed with, along with carrier pigeons, telephones, and travellers bearing greetings to children and relatives. The rituals associated with visits and meetings have been made redundant. Longing has been reduced to a matter of moments, and you can take a friend out for coffee remotely. You can converse voicelessly, and yawn – and do whatever else you want – in private.
 
You can even imagine that there are tens of thousands of people staying up on the other side of the screen who are desperate to hear your opinion. You deliver them your killer sentence, step back, clear your throat, do whatever else you might be doing, and wait for the comments. And when morning dawns, you emerge exulting in the ferocity of the battle, and in your ability to achieve the maximum number of “Likes.”
 
Ibrahim al-Amin is editor-in-chief of Al-Akhbar.
This article is an edited translation from the Arabic Edition.
 
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AIPAC: Israel’s Agent Feeling Squeezed?



Franklin LambAl-Manar

Graphics by Alex
 

The American Israel public affairs committee (AIPAC) has seen headier days according to US congressional staffers forced to work regularly with the pro-Zionist agent of Israel. The grip of fear and the lock on Congress that the Israel first organization has long touted in its service to Israel may be weakening against a backdrop of American Jews rejecting the increasing rants of Prime Minister Netanyahu that are driving many Jews to distance themselves from him, from AIPAC, from other Arabphobic US Zionist organizations, and from Israel.








The old fashioned billboard on the side of the road, highway,
or railroad track is most arousing Zionist jitters these days.

 AIPAC tells some Congressional aids that fund raising is hurting and it can’t keep promises it made to certain candidates that it would arrange “indirect” funding for their current election campaigns. Netanyahu is increasing becoming the butt of jokes across the Israeli and American political spectrum. Several in his cabinet and the US Congress reportedly view him as an embarrassment. A perception likely added to by his recent General Assembly cartoon gimmick and his repeated Nazi style arm and hand gestures that were widely distributed by the main stream American media outlets especially Reuters, AP and even the Zionist Drudge Report.

In addition, there are signs that some members of congress and their staffs, who are heavily lobbied by AIPAC to donate, are beginning to chaff at heavy handed AIPAC fundraising tactics.

Perhaps reflecting financial pressures on its free spending policies including astronomical administration costs, on 9/24/12, Jonathan Missner, AIPAC’s Director of National Affairs and Development sent out more 500,000 emails in a desperate and thinly veiled bid to raise cash to defeat Obama.

Wrote Missner:


Dear Friend of Israel:

I am writing because we have not yet heard from you, and your support is greatly needed by September 30th.

As I’m sure you know, Israel and America are now facing serious threats throughout the Middle East. In recent months alone we have seen:

  • Protestors in multiple Arab countries storm U.S. embassies, burn American and Israeli flags, and chant “death to America, death to Israel,” amidst false reports that a video was created by an Israeli Jew and backed by 100 Jewish financiers.
  • Iran sent military personnel and large quantities of weapons across to Syria to aid the Assad regime’s violent crackdown.
  • A deadly terror attack along the Egypt-Israel border that killed 16 Egyptians and enabled terrorists to penetrate into Israel.
  • Leaders in Iran and its regional proxies increased their vitriol against Israel. The frequency and intensity of these recent statements has been troubling: “Anyone who loves freedom and justice must strive for the annihilation of the Zionist regime.” Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (August 17th).
  • If you’re like most pro-Israel Americans, these events have made you more scared for Israel’s existence than you’ve likely felt in many years.
  • But as you watch these dangers continue to unfold, it is important to remember there is something you can do to help keep Israel safe.
  • You can join AIPAC, and help ensure that our leaders in Washington speak out clearly and unequivocally in support of Israel and that the aggressions shown toward our greatest ally Israel must immediately cease.
  • At this dangerous time, the number one strategic answer to the threats facing Israel is for America to express – in every possible way- an unwavering, unshakable commitment to Israel.
  • We must ensure that President Obama speaks out for Israel.
  • We must ensure that America stands by its full commitment to Israel’s security assistance for fiscal year 2013, which is vital for Israel to be able to defend herself.
  • And we must ensure that America continues to pledge 100% of its diplomatic support to Israel.
  • We must do all of this, so that we can send a strong and loud message that America stands by Israel and that any attacks on Israel’s security is an attack on America’s security.”




AIPAC appears to be failing in carrying orders from the Israeli Embassy in Washington “to defeat Obama, whatever is required.” The latest polls, including two commissioned by the American Jewish Committee and one from the Anti-Defamation League shows Obama likely avoiding the defeat on November 6th that Tel Aviv hoped his combative attitude toward Israel would produce. Obama currently leads Mitt Romney by a 69-20 percent margin among likely Jewish voters. If these polls hold, while they represent a marked decline from the 78 percent of the Jewish vote Obama got in 2008, they show Romney’s promise to put Israel “first no matter what “ is not resonating with American Jews. By now even garnering 25% of the Jewish vote this shows there is plenty of resistance to Romney on a variety of domestic social issues that increasingly among the American public matter more that Israel’s zany schemes. The poll projections may have been reflected at the UN last week when Netanyahu appeared to back off a bit from his pillorying of the Obama administration as being weak on terrorism.
Meanwhile, according to an Arab American Institute poll, 52 percent of all Arab-Americans say they plan to vote for Obama, compared to 28 percent who have declared their support for Romney. Broken down by religion, Arab American Muslims support Obama overwhelmingly (75% to 8%), while Orthodox/Protestants support Romney by a 16% margin. According to the poll, Arab American Democrats outnumber Republicans by a 2-1 margin (46% to 22%), continuing a steady migration away from the GOP toward the Democratic Party since 2002.
Congressional staffers report that the Obama White House is rejecting the tactics being employed behind its back to assert pressure for the “red lines” that Netanyahu’s has been pushing and is aware that AIPAC is actively working to defeat President Obama on November 6th.
Zionist Premier Benjamin Netanyahu drawing the red line for Iran at the UNGA in New YorkWhat is confusing much of the American Jewish community appears to be the same as what perplexes a growing segment of the non-Jewish American public. And that is Netanyahu’s nonsense over Iranian progress in having nuclear weapons and the history of this “the sky is falling-we must cry wolf!” canard.
It was back in April of 1984, that the British defense magazine Jane’s Defense Weekly got things started with its false claim that Iran was “engaged in the production of an atomic bomb, likely to be ready within two years.”
Jane’s became embarrassed since it could offer no proof to back its sensationalist claim and soon admitted that its speculation was based on a West German intelligence source which turned out to be an assistant engineer who visited the unfinished Bushehr nuclear reactor that year and became curious. Soon, a pillar of the US Zionist US Senator Alan Cranston’s lobby picked up on the report and declared that Iran would have nuclear weapons by 1991.
 
The next year, Benjamin Netanyahu, a onetime campaign volunteer for Cranston, now an Israeli parliamentarian, began a campaign to inform the World that Iran could develop nuclear weapons within “three to five years” and therefore must be stopped through “an international front headed by the US.”
Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld joined the project and reported to Congress in 1998 that Iran could build an intercontinental ballistic missile with a nuclear or a biological payload that could hit the US within five years. Secretary of State Colin Powell soon claimed in 2004 that if fact, Iran had been working on technology to fit a nuclear warhead onto a missile.
 
These allegations boldly came from Powell’s less than one year after his Iraqi weapons of mass destruction assertions were being proven to be false.
 
The current President of Israel Shimon Peres announced in 1992 that Iran would have nuclear weapons by 1999. As noted by Robert Fisk in the UK Independent, current Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said in 1996 that Iran would have a nuclear arsenal by 2004.
For his part, Netanyahu reportedly got into an ugly argument with the American ambassador to Israel last month over the Obama administration’s unwillingness to take matters regarding Iran to a more aggressive level. The Israeli prime minister was, according to the New York Times, “at his wit’s end” because, he claimed, Iran was “only four to six weeks away from a nuclear bomb”. A few weeks later, Netanyahu backtracked and pushed the deadline “to six or seven months away.”
And round and round it goes.
Congressional sources insist that White House staff will not forget Netanyahu’s blatant attempts to humiliate and defeat their boss.
The American public, as well as the international community are exhibiting exhaustion over this incessant hysteria which was summed up recently by Professor Stephen M. Walt, writing in Foreign Policy.

“Those prophesying war with Iran are starting to sound like those wacky cult leaders who keep predicting the End of the World, and then keep moving the date when the world doesn’t end on schedule. At what point are we going to stop paying attention?”

One Congressional source emailed:

“Time will tell if next year’s AIPAC conference finds President Obama or any of his top aides on its program.”

 Franklin LambFranklin Lamb is doing research in Lebanon. He is reachable c\o fplamb@gmail.com
Beirut Mobile: +961-70-497-804
Office: +961-01-352-127

 

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Red Line To Israel and Jewish Power Now!


DateFriday, September 28, 2012 at 8:37AM AuthorGilad At

 

Once again, the democratically elected leader of the institutionally genocidal Israel is trying to push us all into a world war.
Time is ripe to draw a red line to the Jewish State and its powerful lobby.
It is time to dismantle the Jewish State by means of total isolation before it turns our planet into dust.

  

The wandering who- Gilad Atzmon

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Who supports terror?


DateThursday, September 27, 2012 at 7:56AM AuthorGilad Atzmon

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Torah Jews meet President Ahmadinejad in NYC


DateSaturday, September 29, 2012 at 4:06PM AuthorGilad Atzmon

The Torah Jews are the only anti Zionist Jewish collective. They are just very few but their message is clear, coherent and consistent.

 

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‘Why Qatar wants to invade Syria’

By Pepe Escobar

Make no mistake; the Emir of Qatar is on a roll.

What an entrance at the UN General Assembly in New York; Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani called for an Arab coalition of the willing-style invasion of Syria, no less. [1]

In the words of the Emir, “It is better for the Arab countries themselves to interfere out of their national, humanitarian, political and military duties, and to do what is necessary to stop the bloodshed in Syria.” He stressed Arab countries had a “military duty” to invade.

What he means by “Arab countries” is the petromonarchies of the Gulf Counter-Revolution Club (GCC), previously known as Gulf Cooperation Council – with implicit help from Turkey, with which the GCC has a wide-ranging strategic agreement. Every shisha house in the Middle East knows that Doha, Riyadh and Ankara have been weaponizing/financing/providing logistical help to the various strands of the armed Syrian opposition engaged in regime change.

The Emir even quoted a “similar precedent” for an invasion, when “Arab forces intervened in Lebanon” in the 1970s. By the way, during a great deal of the 1970s the Emir himself was engaged in more mundane interventions, such as letting his hair down alongside other Gulf royals in select Club Med destinations, as this photo attests (he’s the guy on the left).

‘The Emir, in Club Med camouflage!’

 So is the Emir now preaching an Arab version of the R2P (“responsibility to protect”) doctrine advanced by The Three Graces of Humanitarian Intervention (Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice and Samantha Power)?

This is certainly bound to go down well in Washington – not to mention Ankara and even Paris, considering French president Francois Hollande has just called for UN protection of “liberated zones” in Syria.

As for the Emir’s Lebanon precedent, that’s not exactly uplifting, to say the least. The so-called Arab Deterrent Force of 20,000 soldiers that entered Lebanon to try to contain the civil war overstayed its welcome by no less than seven years, turned into a Syrian military occupation of northern Lebanon, left officially in 1982 and still the civil war kept raging.

Imagine a similar scenario in Syria – on steroids.

A ‘pretty influential guy’

As for the Emir’s humanitarian – not to mention democratic – ardor, it’s enlightening to check out what US President Barack Obama thinks about it. Obama – who defines the Emir as a “pretty influential guy” – seems to imply that even though “he himself is not reforming significantly” and “there’s no big move towards democracy in Qatar”, just because the emirate’s per capita income is humongous, a move towards democracy is not so pressing.
 
So let’s assume the Emir is not exactly interested in turning Syria into Scandinavia. That opens the way to an inevitable motive – connected to, what else, Pipelineistan.

Vijay Prashad, author of the recent Arab Spring, Libya Winter, is currently writing a series on the Syria Contact Group for Asia Times Online. He got a phone call from an energy expert urging him to investigate “the Qatari ambition to run its pipelines into Europe.” According to this source, “the proposed route would have run through Iraq and Turkey. The former transit country is posing to be a problem. So much easier to go north (Qatar has already promised Jordan free gas).”

Even before Prashad concludes his investigation, it’s clear what Qatar is aiming at; to kill the US$10 billion Iran-Iraq-Syria gas pipeline, a deal that was clinched even as the Syria uprising was already underway. [2]

Here we see Qatar in direct competition with both Iran (as a producer) and Syria (as a destination), and to a lesser extent, Iraq (as a transit country). It’s useful to remember that Tehran and Baghdad are adamantly against regime change in Damascus.

The gas will come from the same geographical/geological base – South Pars, the largest gas field in the world, shared by Iran and Qatar. The Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline – if it’s ever built – would solidify a predominantly Shi’ite axis through an economic, steel umbilical cord.

Qatar, on the other hand, would rather build its pipeline in a non-“Shi’ite crescent” way, with Jordan as a destination; exports would leave from the Gulf of Aqaba to the Gulf of Suez and then to the Mediterranean. That would be the ideal plan B as negotiations with Baghdad become increasingly complicated (plus the fact the route across Iraq and Turkey is much longer).

Washington – and arguably European customers – would be more than pleased with a crucial Pipelineistan gambit bypassing the Islamic Gas Pipeline.

And of course, if there’s regime change in Syria – helped by the Qatari-proposed invasion – things get much easier in Pipelineistan terms. A more than probable Muslim Brotherhood (MB) post-Assad regime would more than welcome a Qatari pipeline. And that would make an extension to Turkey much easier.

Ankara and Washington would win. Ankara because Turkey’s strategic aim is to become the top energy crossroads from the Middle East/Central Asia to Europe (and the Islamic Gas Pipeline bypasses it). Washington because its whole energy strategy in Southwest Asia since the Clinton administration has been to bypass, isolate and hurt Iran by all means necessary. [3]

That wobbly Hashemite throne

All this points to Jordan as an essential pawn in Qatar’s audacious geopolitical/energy power play. Jordan has been invited to be part of the GCC – even though it’s not exactly in the Persian Gulf (who cares? It’s a monarchy).

One of the pillars of Qatar’s foreign policy is unrestricted support for the MB – no matter the latitude. The MB has already conquered the presidency in Egypt. It is strong in Libya. It may become the dominant power if there’s regime change in Syria. That brings us to Qatar’s help to the MB in Jordan.
At the moment, Jordan’s Hashemite monarchy is wobbly – and that’s a transcendental understatement.

There’s a steady influx of Syrian refugees. Compound it with the Palestinian refugees that came in waves during the crucial phases of the Arab-Israeli war, in 1948, 1967 and 1973. Then add a solid contingent of Salafi-jihadis fighting Damascus. Only a few days ago one Abu Usseid was arrested. His uncle was none other than Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the infamous former head of al-Qaeda in Iraq, killed in 2006. Usseid was about to cross the desert from Jordan to Syria.

Amman has been mired in protests since January 2011 – even before the spread of the Arab Spring. King Abdullah, also known as King Playstation, and photogenic Washington/Hollywood darling Queen Rania, have not been spared.

The MB in Jordan is not the only player in the protest wave; unions and social movements are also active. Most protesters are Jordanians – who historically have been in control of all levels of state bureaucracy. But then neo-liberalism reduced them to road kill; Jordan went through a savage privatization drive during the 1990s. The impoverished kingdom now depends on the IMF and extra handouts from the US, the GCC and even the EU.

Parliament is a joke – dominated by tribal affiliation and devotion to the monarchy. Reforms are not even cosmetic. A prime minister was changed in April and most people didn’t even noticed it. In an Arab world classic, the regime fights demands for change by increasing repression.

Into this quagmire steps Qatar. Doha wants King Playstation to embrace Hamas. It was Qatar that promoted the meeting in January between the King and Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal – who had been expelled from Jordan in 1999. That left indigenous Jordanians wondering whether the kingdom would be swamped by yet another wave of Palestinian refugees.

Arab media – most of it controlled by the House of Saud – has been drowning in stories and editorials predicting that after the MB ascends to power in Damascus, Amman will be next. Qatar, though, is binding its time. The MB wants Jordan to become a constitutional monarchy; then they will take over politically after an electoral reform that King Abdullah has been fighting against for years.
Now the MB can even count on the support of Bedouin tribes, whose traditional allegiance to the Hashemite throne has never been wobblier. The regime has ignored protests at its own peril. The MB has called for a mass demonstration against the King on October 10. The Hashemite throne is going down, sooner rather than later.
It’s unclear how Obama would react – apart from praying that nothing substantial happens before November 6. As for the Emir of Qatar, he has all the time in the world. So many regimes to fall – and become Muslim Brothers; so many pipelines to build.

Notes:
1. Qatar’s emir calls for Arab-led intervention in Syria, The National, Sep 26, 2012.
2. Syria’s Pipelineistan war, Al Jazeera, Aug 6, 2012.
3. Qatar: Rich and Dangerous, Oilprice.com, Sep 17, 2012.

Pepe Escobar is the author of Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War (Nimble Books, 2007) and Red Zone Blues: a snapshot of Baghdad during the surge. His most recent book is Obama does Globalistan (Nimble Books, 2009).

He may be reached at pepeasia@yahoo.com

(Copyright 2012 Asia Times Online (Holdings) Ltd. All rights reserved. Please contact us about sales, syndication and republishing.) 

US Says Libya Attackers Linked to Al-Qaeda

Local Editor
 
The US intelligence community said that attack on a US consulate in Libya was by militants linked to al-Qaeda, but noted that “many unanswered questions” remained.
US ambassador to Libya killed
“It remains unclear if any group or person exercised overall command and control of the attack, and if extremist group leaders directed their members to participate,” Shawn Turner, spokesman for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, said in a statement Friday.
“We do assess that some of those involved were linked to groups affiliated with, or sympathetic to Al-Qaeda.”

US Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed in the assault.

“As we learned more about the attack, we revised our initial assessment to reflect new information indicating that it was a deliberate and organized terrorist attack carried out by extremists,” Turner explained.

But Turner stressed that despite “progress” made in the investigation, “there remain many unanswered questions.”

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The Powerplays behind "The Innocence of Muslims"

 

by Thierry Meyssan

Israel’s big ploy moves ahead in the shadow of the demonstrations and reactions to the film “The Innocence of Muslims.” However, the appearance of Hezbollah on the scene has reversed the situation, which could prompt Tel Aviv to call off the operation.

JPEG - 22.7 kbThe international reactions to the film by “Sam Bacile” are more and more incomprehensible if taken at face value, ignoring who is behind it and what their objectives are.
 

This provocation designed to instigate a clash of civilizations is very different from previous ones. It’s goal is not to stigmatize Islam vis-à-vis Western populations to elicit hatred toward the Muslims but is rather directed at Muslims to insult them and thereby incite hatred toward Westerners. This is not “Islamophobia”; it is “Islam-bashing” and its objective is to arouse anger among Muslims and direct that anger toward specific targets: those who in the U.S. or among their allies wish to interrupt the cycles of wars begun on September 11, 2001.

No one knows if the film, “The Innocence of Muslims,” really exists in full-length form. So far, only a thirteen-minute clip has emerged, the most offensive parts of which were dubbed over the soundtrack at a later date. First placed on YouTube, the video had no impact until it was diffused in Arabic by the Salafist television station, Al-Nas. Salafist groups then reacted violently but instead of attacking the station or its Saudi sponsors, they turned their ire on American diplomatic representatives.

The State Department was warned on September 9—two days before the release of the film by the Salafist television station—that several of its embassies would be attacked on the 11th. Yet this alert was not taken seriously and diplomatic personnel were not informed of the threat. The State Department had been expecting anti-American demonstrations to take place to mark the anniversary of the September 11th attacks.

It has since been established that behind the Benghazi mob, a commando was already prepared to attack the Consulate and then the fortified villa which was to be used as a safehouse in the case of a serious crisis.

The target of the operation was the U.S. Ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens. This specialist in Near-Eastern Affairs was known both for his American imperialist views but also his anti-Zionist ones. This was confirmed by the special Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat as he deplored the death of a diplomat who had done much to comprehend the point of view of the Palestinian people and in turn make that viewpoint understood in Washington.

A second target was to be designated to punish France for having aligned herself with U.S. positions. Paris, in fact, refuses to let itself be dragged into a war against Iran and also refuses to get itself more deeply enmeshed in the Syrian quagmire. Consequently, a whole new provocation was launched, employing a satirical magazine that has for years relayed the Neo-conservative viewpoint within the French Left. Anticipating the consequences, France immediately suspended activity at twenty of its embassies and deployed heavy security around them.

At home, the French government presented itself as the guarantor of the freedom of expression. Accordingly, it defends the right of the enemies of Islam to indulge in blasphemous caricatures. But then, openly contradicting itself, the same government announced a prohibition of any demonstration hostile to the film or the magazine, thus denying freedom of expression to the defenders of Islam.

In the French tradition, freedom of expression is considered a foundational condition of democracy. It therefore is accompanied with prohibitions against libel and defamation seen as threatening to democratic debate. The main characteristic of “Innocence” is that it has no connection to historical reality and presents no critique of Islam. It is entirely composed of defamatory scenes. However, libel is not a human right.

Returning to the realm of geopolitics, “The Innocence of Muslims” is reminiscent of the operation which unfolded around the publication of The Satanic Verses. It was 1988 and Iran had just triumphed over Iraq thanks to massive support from the West. In few years, the Imam Khomeini had transformed a colonized population into a nation of warriors. He drew from his religion the strength that allowed him to transform the country and to defeat the enemy. In order to fracture this dangerous Islamic Republic, MI6 commissioned a work from the British writer, Salman Rushdie. Rouhoullah Khomeini immediately issued a religious decree condemning him to death. The campaign halted immediately and the fatwa though maintained, was not carried out.

On this occasion, Teheran should have reacted just as promptly. But Iran was in a corner; in condemning the film it would be playing the game of those pressuring Washington to go to war against Iran. The tactical solution emerged from the intervention by new protagonists. At the outset, the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei condemned the film by affirming that the enemy was Zionism. Then, at a later stage, Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah positioned himself at the head of the movement. In Beirut, during an impassioned speech and facing a galvanized audience, he forced those spreading the insults to face up to their responsibilities. Hezbollah’s eruption onto the scene modifies the equation dramatically. 

We are witnessing a shift from the atrocies committed by small-scale disorganized Salafist groups, easily manipulated by Israel, to a warning issued by an extensive, highly-structured organization, operating with combat-ready cells within numerous countries. This time, it is Tel-Aviv who’s in a trap; it has lost control of a protest movement that could at any moment turn against Israel.

For its part, the Obama Administration to extricate itself from the situation issued multiple soothing declarations for the benefit of Muslims but displayed a total lack or solidarity with France. Instead, it condemned the contradictions of French policy, hoping to push in the direction of Paris the smoking powder keg before it explodes in its own face.

Whatever the case, Benjamin Netanyahu is not letting up on the pressure, demanding that Barack Obama trace “a red line” at the militarized nuclear ambitions he attributes to Iran and demanding that the U.S. president go to war when he deems the Iranians will have crossed it.

Source
Information Clearing House (USA)

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What Really Matters!

When all gets dark

And life loses its colours
When evil tightens the grip

And the wicked leads the way

When fall falls before its time

and frost grows around
When your heart is torn and worn,

and you feel like throwing it away

Don’t give up, just wait a little while,
Turn your back
Close your eyes and
Remember what you have forgotten
Try to find if you’ve lost, 
Apologize if you’ve hurt,
Forgive if you have been hurt,
Caress if you’ve been deprived,
Pursue, if you have dream
Share if you’ve been bereft,
Giggle if you’ve been aggrieved,
Embrace if you’ve been shun,
Give if you’ve been denied,
Excel if you’ve been scorned,
Feed if you’ve tasted hunger
Rejoice if you’ve felt somber
Accompany those who know


Hold on tight to those you love,

Cherish those who care for you,
Because life is too short
and it is full of wonder



The NAM Summit, Iran, and Syria: A Coup against the West?

by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya

Mahdi Darius NazemroayaThe following article was written by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya before the non-aligned summit. It helps to understand the issues that were at stake and, in retrospect, to appraise Iran’s success. The Movement has been reactivated and a permanent secretariat established, to be chaired for the next three years by Iran, Egypt and Venezuela. Defying the U.S. verboten, the Egyptian President traveled to Tehran. While he vented his disagreement over Syria, in a significant move he also restored diplomatic relations with Iran. Ultimately, Tehran put Cairo in the limelight to nudge it toward an independent stance where it could act as a counterweight to Riyadh.

JPEG - 42.9 kbThe upcoming summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) will be held in Tehran from August 26 to 31, 2012. The NAM and its summit are mostly ignored in the Atlanticist world of the United States and NATO, but this year’s gathering has gotten the attention of the Atlanticists and their press. The reason is that the NAM summit’s venue has upset the political establishment in Washington, DC.

The US government has got its feathers ruffled and even gone out of its way to berate NAM leaders for gathering in Iran. US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland – the spouse of neo-con Project for the New American Century (PNAC) co-founder and arch-imperialist Robert Kagan – has asked Egypt’s new president, Mohamed Morsi, and even UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Washington’s own steward at the UN, not to travel to Tehran. Nuland and the US State Department have bitterly declared that Iran is not deserving of such “high-level presences.” The US, however, is forced to grin and bear the gathering of world leaders in Tehran.

What will take place is an international extravaganza, minus NATO and its key de facto members – Australia, Japan, New Zealand, and South Korea – in the Asia-Pacific and Israel. African, Asian, Caribbean, and Latin America officials will be there in full strength. The Chinese, which have the status of observers in the NAM, will be there. The Russians, which are not part of the NAM, have been invited as Iran’s special guests and will be represented by Konstantin Shuvalov, Russian ambassador-at-large and Vladimir Putin’s envoy. Even non-NAM member Turkey has been given an invitation from Tehran. To help the Palestinians, Hamas will also be given a special seat at the table under an invitation sent from Iran to Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh to participate at the summit alongside the US-Israeli puppet Mahmoud Abbas. [1] Alongside the Russian Federation, most the members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) will be attending as either full members or observers. Aside from the Chinese and Russians, the other three members of the BRICS grouping – Brazil, India, and South Africa – that is becoming the new engine shaping the world will also be in attendance.

The NAM Summit, Iran, and Syria: A Coup against the West?

The gathering of NAM leaders will doubtlessly be an important event for Iran’s international prestige and status. For almost a week Tehran will be a key center of the world alongside the offices of the UN in New York City and Geneva. Not only will Iran be the venue for one of the largest international get-togethers of world leaders, but it will also be handed over the organization’s chairmanship from Arab powerhouse Egypt. Iran will retain this position as the leader of the NAM for the next few years and will be able to speak on behalf of the international organization. Up to a certain degree this position will allow Tehran to have more influence in world affairs. At least this is the view in Tehran where none of the significance of the NAM summit has been lost on Iranian politicians and officials who one after another are pointing out the importance of the NAM summit for their country.
The NAM is the second largest international organization and body in the world after the United Nations. With 120 full members and 17 observer members it includes most the countries and governments of the world. About two-thirds of the UN’s member states are full NAM members. The African Union (AU), Afro-Asian People’s Solidarity Organization, Commonwealth of Nations, Hostosian National Independence Movement, Kanak Socialist National Liberation Front, Arab League, Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), South Center, United Nations, and World Peace Council are all observers too.

The US and NATO which very generously and misleadingly throw around the term “international community” when they are referring to themselves are really a global minority that pale in comparison to the international grouping formed by the NAM. Any agreements or consensuses drilled out by the NAM represent not only the bulk of the international community, but also the non-imperialist international majority or those countries that have traditionally been viewed as the “have-nots.” Unlike at the UN, the “silent majority” will have its voice heard with little adulteration and perversion from the confederates of NATOistan.

The NAM gathering in Tehran signifies an important event. It demonstrates that Iran is genuinely not internationally isolated like the images that the United States and major European Union powers, such as the UK and France, like to continuously project. Atlanticist media are scrambling to explain this situation and the Israelis are clearly upset.

JPEG - 28.3 kbUndoubtedly, Iran will use the international gathering to its advantage and make use of the NAM to garnish support for its international positions and to help try to end the crisis in Syria. The US-supported siege of Syria will be denounced at the NAM conference and diplomatic blows will be dealt against the US and its clients and satellites. Already the hurried ministerial conference about the fighting in Syria organized by the Iranian Foreign Ministry in Tehran before the emergency summit held by the OIC in Mecca was a prelude to the diplomatic support that Iran will give the Syrian Arab Republic at the 2012 NAM summit.

Despite Algerian and Iranian opposition, Syria was expelled from the OIC at the behest of Saudi Arabia and the petro-monarchies. While the OIC emergency summit in Mecca may have been a political and diplomatic blow to Damascus, the situation is expected to be much different at the NAM summit in Tehran. The Syrians will also be present in Tehran and able to face their Arab antagonists from the petro-monarchies of the Persian Gulf.

The Genesis of the Non-Aligned Movement and Third World

The Non-Aligned Movement and concept of a “Third World” have their roots in the period of de-colonization after the Second World War when the empires of Western Europe began to crumble and formally end. This superficially represented an end to the domination of the weak by the strong. In reality, colonialism was merely substituted with foreign aid and loans by the declining empires. In this context, the British would offer aid to their former colonies while the French and Dutch would do the same with their former colonies to maintain control over them. Thus, the exploitation never truly ended and the world was maintained in a state of disequilibrium. The United Nations was also hostage to the big powers and ignored many important issues concerning places like Africa and Latin America.

What brought the formation of the NAM about was firstly the rejection of domination and interference by the countries of the “Global North” – a term that will be defined shortly – and the concept of co-existence that India and China carved out in 1954 when New Delhi recognized Tibet as a part of China.

The NAM started as an Asian initiative, which sought to address the tense relations between China and the US on one hand and China’s relations with other Asian powers on the other hand. The newly independent Asian states wanted to avoid any ratcheting up of the Cold War in their continent, especially after the disastrous US-led military intervention in Korea, or the manipulation of India and Indonesia as buffer states against the People’s Republic of China. This Asian initiative quickly broadened and gained the support of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Egypt, and the various leaders of the nationalist independence movements in Africa that were fighting for their liberation against NATO countries like Britain, France, and Portugal.





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From left to right: Jawaharlal Nehru, Kwame Nkrumah, Gamal Abdel Nasser, Ahmed Sukarno and Josip Broz Tito.

Yugoslavian President Josip Broz Tito, Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, and Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser were the three main forces behind the organization’s creation. Kwame Nkrumah, the Marxist pan-African leader of Ghana, and Ahmed Sukarno, the leader of Indonesia, would also put their weight behind the NAM and join Tito, Nehru, and Nasser.

These leaders and their countries did not view the Cold War as an ideological struggle. This was a smokescreen. The Cold War was a power struggle from their perspectives and ideology was merely used as a justification.

The Different Worlds of the Cold War

The word “non-alignment” was first used on the world stage by Vengalil Krishnan Krishna Menon, India’s ambassador to the United Nations, while the term “Third World” was first used by the French scholar Alfred Sauvy. Third World is a debated political term and some find it both deregulatory and ethnocentric. To the point of confusion the phrase Third World is inextricably intertwined with the concept of non-alignment and the NAM.

Both the NAM and, especially, Third World are wrongly and carelessly used as synonyms for the Developing and Under-developing Worlds or as economic indicators. Most Third World countries were underprivileged former colonies or less affluent states in places like Africa and Latin America that were the victims of imperialism and exploitation. This has led to the general identification or misidentification of the NAM countries and the Third World with concepts of poverty. This is wrong and not what either of the terms means.

Third World was a concept that developed during the Cold War period to distinguish those countries that were not formally a part of the First World that was formed by the Western Bloc and either the Eastern/Soviet Bloc and Communist World that formed the Second World. In theory most these Third Worlders were neutral and joining the NAM was a formal expression of this position of non-alignment.

Aside from being considered Second Worlders, communist states like the People’s Republic of China and Cuba have widely been classified as parts of the Third World and have considered themselves as parts of the third global force. Chairman Mao’s views defined through his concept of Three Worlds also supported the classification of communist states like Angola, China, Cuba, and Mozambique as Third Worlders, because they did not belong to the Soviet Bloc like Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, and Poland.

In the most orthodox of interpretations of the political meaning of Third World, the communist state of Yugoslavia was a part of the Third World. In the same context, Iran due to its ties to NATO and its membership in the US-controlled Central Treaty Organization (CENTO) was politically a part of the First World until the Iranian Revolution in 1979. Thus, reference to Yugoslavia as a Second World country and Iran as a Third World country prior to 1979 are incorrect.

The term Third World has also given rise to the phrase “Global South.” This name is based on the geographically southward situation of the Third World on the map as opposed to the geographically northward situation of the First and Second Worlds, which both began to collectively be called the “Global North.” The names Global North and Global South came to slowly replace the terms First, Second, and Third World, especially since the Cold War ended and the Soviet Union collapsed.

Bandung, Belgrade, and Non-Aligned Institution Building

PNG - 51.9 kbPNG - 26.1 kbThe NAM formed when the Third Worlders who were caught between the Atlanticists and the Soviets during the Cold War tried to formalize their third way or force. The NAM would be born after the Bandung Conference in 1955, which infuriated the US and Western Bloc who saw it as a sin against their global interests.

Contrarily to Western Bloc views, the Soviet Union was much more predisposed to accepting the NAM. Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev even proposed in 1960 that the UN be managed by a “troika” composed of the First, Second, and Third Worlds instead of its Western-influenced secretariat in New York City that was colluding with the US to remove Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba from power in the Democratic Republic of Congo, as well as other independent world leaders.

Fidel Castro and Cuba, which hosted the NAM’s summit in 1979 when Iran joined as its eighty-eighth member, would actually argue that the Second World and communist movements were the “natural allies” of the Third World and the NAM. The favorable attitudes of Nasser and Nehru towards the Soviet Union and the Soviet Bloc’s support for various national liberation movements also lends credence towards the Cuban argument about the Second and Third World alliance against the capitalist exploitation and imperialist policies of the First World.

The first NAM summit would be held in the Yugoslavian capital of Belgrade in 1961 under the chairmanship of Marshall Tito. The summit in Belgrade would call for an end to all empires and colonization. Tito, Nehru, Nasser, Nkrumah, Sukarno and other NAM leaders would demand that Western Europeans end their colonial roles in Africa and let African peoples decide their own fates.
A preparatory conference was also held a few months earlier in Cairo by Gamal Abdel Nasser. At the preparatory meetings non-alignment was defined by five points:

(1) Non-aligned countries must follow an independent policy of co-existence of nations with varied political and social systems;
(2) Non-aligned countries must be consistent in their support for national independence;
(3) Non-aligned countries must not belong to a multilateral alliance concluded in the context of superpower or big power politics;
(4) If non-aligned countries have bilateral agreements with big powers or belonged to a regional defense pact, these agreements should not have been concluded in context of the Cold War;
(5) If non-aligned states cede military bases to a big power, these bases should not be granted in the context of the Cold War.




First conference of the Non-Aligned Movement
held 50 years ago today

All the NAM conferences to follow would cover vital issues in the years to come that ranged from the inclusion of the People’s Republic of China in the UN, the fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo, African wars of independence against Western European countries, opposition to apartheid and racism, and nuclear disarmament. Furthermore, the NAM has traditionally been hostile to Zionism and condemned the occupation of Palestinian, Lebanese, Syrian, and Egyptian territories by Israel, which has earned it the seamlessly never-ending aversion of Tel Aviv.

Making NAM Relevant Again

Many people ask what relevance the Non-Aligned Movement has today. Since the end of the Cold War the NAM’s strength has been eroded as the US, neoliberal economic reforms, the IMF, and the World Bank have gained more and more control over NAM members. In many cases NAM members have reverted back to de facto colonies in all but name. Many members of NAM, such as Belarus, Colombia, Ethiopia, and Saudi Arabia, are actually fully aligned states.

There is no question about it that Iran wants to make NAM relevant again to use it to fight off the expansionist Atlanticist World. So do the Russians and the Chinese. The NAM after all has provided Iran important diplomatic support in its politicized nuclear dispute with the Atlanticists. The NAM is also the closest alternative to the Atlanticist-infiltrated and perverted United Nations.
The NAM summit will be capitalized on by Iran and its allies to try and develop some sort of strategy to fight and circumvent the unilateral US and European Union sanctions against the Iranian economy and to show the Atlanticists in the US and the EU that their powers in the world are limited and declining. One small step in this direction is that Iran will begin negotiations with 60 NAM countries to drop bilateral visa requirements with Iran. A universal statement may also be released asking for the anti-Iranian sanctions to be dropped or modified. Other steps would include proposals for a new and alternative financial global structure, which would evade the Atlanticist chokehold on international financial transactions.

An important event at the NAM summit will be the arrival of Morsi in Tehran as a sign of warming relations. Ties between Cairo and Tehran will not be restored overnight either, because there are restrictions on Morsi. Whatever happens between Egypt and Iran at the NAM summit in Tehran will be just steps in an unrushed process. The Egyptians are taking pains not to antagonize their Western and Arab paymasters and the Iranians have opted to be patient. Morsi’s presence in Iran, however, is still symbolically very important. Tehran indeed has reason to be very optimistic as all its stars are aligning at its NAM gala.

Diplomatic circles are looking at Egypt on the eve of the NAM summit. Before it was announced that Morsi would go to Iran, it was expected that Egyptian Vice-President Mahmoud Mekki would represent Egypt at the NAM summit as a demonstration of Egypt’s estrangement from Iran.
Cairo’s relationship with Tehran and what develops from Morsi’s trip to Iran is what all Arabdom, Israel, and the US will be watching carefully.

Some analysts are asserting that Egypt’s stance could “make or break” the project to isolate Iran, especially in sectarian terms involving a Shiite-Sunni divide. This is actually wrong, because there is nothing specifically significant that Egypt can do to break or isolate Iran. After all, Cairo and Tehran have essentially had no ties since 1980 and Mubarak was a staunch ally of the US who put Egypt to work with Saudi Arabia and Israel to curb Iranian influence.

In the worst case scenario the relationship between the two countries will stay as it was during the Mubarak era. This is not a losing situation for Iran, albeit the situation in Syria has catalyzed the Iranian desire for faster rapprochement. Egyptian-Iranian relations have nowhere to go except upward.

The Tahrir (Liberation) Square protests that dethroned Mubarak and helped bring about the elections that brought the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood into power are part of what Iranian officials call an “Islamic Awakening” in contrast to an “Arab Spring.” Iran did not hide its belief either that Egypt and it could eventually form a new regional axis after dictator-for-life Mubarak was booted out from power. If there is any man that can make the leap from the conception of an Arab Spring to an Islamic Awakening, at least publicly, it is President Morsi through an alliance with Iran.
On August 8, Iran sent Hamid Baqaei to deliver Morsi’s invitation to attend the NAM summit in Tehran. Along the way the international press and pundits gave higher attribution to Baqaei’s governmental rank, because they failed to realize or mention that he was the most senior of eleven junior or assistant vice-presidents and essentially the cabinet minister responsible for the Iranian presidency’s executive affairs.

First Vice-President Mohammed-Reza Rahimi, the former governor of the Iranian province of Kurdistan and himself a former junior vice-president, is Iran’s senior vice-president. Regardless, Baqaei’s visit to Cairo as both a presidential envoy and a close presidential aide was important. Iran could have delivered the invitation letter through its interest section in the Swiss Embassy to Egypt or other diplomatic channels, but made a significant gesture by sending Baqaei directly to Egypt. The move made all the countries conspiring against Iran and Syria very anxious. For these anxious countries the NAM get-together in Tehran will be all about Egypt, Iran, and Syria.

Are Saudi, Qatari, and IMF moves in Egypt tied to the NAM Summit in Tehran?

Both Saudi Arabia and Qatar have offered Egypt their financial aid before Morsi’s visits to Beijing, where he is expected to ask for Chinese help. Aside from the use of Saudi and Qatari aid to shape the way that the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood interacts with Iran, the offers of aid from the petro-despots of Doha and Riyadh are part of the Arab competition over influence in Cairo.

Morsi is widely seen as Qatar’s man and relations between Riyadh and Cairo have been uneasy for some time. The Saudi Embassy in Cairo was even temporarily closed after Egyptian protests against Saudi Arabia flared up. More importantly, the House of Saud opposed Morsi in support of longstanding Mubarak henchman Ahmed Shafik during the Egyptian presidential elections. In addition, the House of Saud has propped up its own political clients inside Egypt against the Muslim Brotherhood. The House of Saud’s Egyptian clients, the Nour Party and the their parliamentary coalition called the Alliance for Egypt (Islamic Bloc), trailed in second place behind the Muslim Brotherhood’s parliamentary coalition, the Democratic Alliance.

Despite the fact that Doha and Riyadh are both serving US interests, the two sheikhdoms have a rivalry with one another. This Qatari-Saudi rivalry picked up again after a brief pause that saw both sides invade the island-kingdom of Bahrain to support the Khalifa regime and to work together against the governments of Libya and Syria.

The Saud and Al-Thani rivalry has seen both sides supporting different armed groups in Libya and competing anti-government forces during the so-called Arab Spring (or Islamic Awakening in Tehran). The elections in Egypt, where Doha and Riyadh supported different sides, just added fuel to the Qatari-Saudi fire.

Qatar’s Emir Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani has made it a point to support the Muslim Brotherhood almost wherever they are as a means of expanding Qatari influence. Just days after the ousting of Mubarak, Qatar’s Al Jazeera showed great foresight when it launched Al Jazeera Mubasher Misr, a news channel dedicated exclusively to Egypt. While Qatar and its media have put their weight behind the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, Saudi Arabia and its media have not.

This has also been the reason that the Saudi-controlled media, like Al Arabiya, has continued to level criticisms against President Morsi even after the elections in Egypt. To alleviate the House of Saud’s tensions with Egypt, Morsi made his first foreign trip as president to Saudi Arabia.

Sultan - three terror sheikhs2Aside from favorable news coverage, it is also widely believed that Qatar helped finance the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt during elections. In addition, Qatari investments in Egypt grew by 74% according to figures released by the Egyptian Central Bank in July 2012. On August 11, Emir Al-Thani and a Qatari delegation also travelled to Egypt for a one-day visit with Morsi. The next day, on August 12, Morsi politely dismissed or “retired” Field Marshal Tantawi, the head of the Egyptian Armed Forces, and Sami Anan, the Egyptian Armed Forces chief of staff and Tantawi’s number two. After Al-Thani’s visit, rumors also began to circulate in Egypt that the Muslim Brotherhood was planning to lease the Suez Canal to Emir Al-Thani, which was denied by Morsi and his presidential staff.

An outcome of Emir Al-Thani’s Egyptian visit was that it was announced that Qatar gave Cairo two billion dollars (US). In reality, the Qataris only gave Egypt 500 million dollars (US) and said that the remainder will be given in installments, which will start after the NAM summit in Tehran. Does the payment schedule say anything?

The timing of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) visit to Cairo to negotiate a loan on the eve of the NAM summit in Tehran is also suspicious. After a year of uncertainty and begging, Qatar and the IMF have opened their pockets to the Egyptians (although Qatar sent some money earlier). The Libyan Transitional Council government has even offered to pitch in financially, even when its own coffers are in disarray as a result of the NATO war on Libya and the looting of Libya’s treasury and assets by the Atlanticists with the help of US neoliberal economist turned Libyan “minister of oil and finance” Ali Tarhouni. As for the House of Saud everyone understands that their terms for financial aid to Egypt include the continuation of anti-Iranian policies in Cairo.

Everyone will be Watching Morsi in Tehran

JPEG - 30.9 kbLooking East Policy Shift in Cairo? Where Morsi’s foreign policy is going after the NAM conference in Tehran is the other important question. Where he stands will begin to crystallize from the NAM meeting onwards. The fear of rapprochement between Iran and Egypt certainly keeps a lot of people up at night in Riyadh, Tel Aviv, London, and Washington, DC. Everyone is waiting to see what Cairo and Tehran will do and for many the expectations of rapprochement are running high, but the leverage and restrictions that exist over Morsi should not be forgotten either.

Although there is far less fanfare and attention being paid to Morsi’s trip to China, what he does there will also be very important. Some say he plans on slowly shifting Cairo’s foreign policy away from the Atlanticist camp, with Washington as its capital, towards the Eurasianist camp that includes China and Iran. Certainly Chinese foreign aid will reduce Egyptian dependency on the Atlanticists and their Arab petro-monarch partners. What we are dealing with here is an intricate web of multiple relations between different groups who are interacting with one another in different ways and through changing relationships.

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When "freedom of speech" translates into hate crime

September 26th, 2012
Kourosh Ziabari

They see the offensive movie which has insulted one of the world’s most ancient, venerated and popular religions in the light of their ambassador and other diplomatic staff being killed overseas. Of course such violence is not accepted, but the U.S. politicians and mass media have never paid due attention to the disgraceful and outrageous nature of a movie which portrays Islam a repressive religion and its holy prophet as a depraved and corrupt individual; a movie which has targeted the souls of 1.5 billion Muslims around the world with its heinous and appalling language.

“Innocence of Muslims” produced by a man who has been laying in ambush since the release of the 13-minute trailer of his movie on Youtube is a film awash with a throbbing tone and insulting portrayals. There has been a widespread controversy over the identity of the man behind the movie. Last Wednesday, the Associated Press published an interview with a man identified as an American-Israeli citizen named Sam Bacile who produced the movie with the donation of 100 Jewish sponsors. The same day, Wall Street Journal published an interview with Bacile and identified him as the writer and producer of the movie.

However, the following day, WSJ published a correction, noting that “subsequent reporting indicates that [the] name is a pseudonym.” Afterward, some media outlets referred to the previously Sam Bacile as Nakoula Basseley Nakoula who was born and raised in Cairo, Egypt and later moved to Cerritos, California. Further investigations by the media revealed that the producer of the incendiary film had been using numerous pseudonyms including Nicola Bacily, Robert Bacily, Matthew Nekola, Daniel K. Caresman, Sobhi Bushra and Malid Ahlawi.

What seems clear from the different reports provided by news agencies and newspapers is that the Israeli-American Sam Bacile is the same Coptic Egyptian Nakoula Basseley Nakoula who has assumed ambiguous and equivocal identities in order to avoid the possible consequences of the rage and fury of the Muslims. Interestingly, the mass media haven’t published any photo of him. Google image search for the entries of “Sam Bacile” and “Nakoula Basseley Nakoula” return the pictures of Terry Jones and former U.S. ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens! There’s only one picture which shows a man claimed to be Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, sitting beside a woman, but nobody has confirmed the veracity of the picture.

According to the New York Daily News, the 55-year-old filmmaker was convicted of a check-kiting scheme in 2010 and sentenced to 21 months in prison and served one year, later being released on probation. A federal court had ruled that he was barred from using internet for 5 years.

There are some recorded movies of his anti-Islam speeches, attesting that he has a background of attacking Muslims on different occasions. In his recent interview with AP, the extremist filmmaker has called Islam “a cancer,” saying that “the U.S. lost a lot of money and a lot of people in wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but we’re fighting with ideas.”

However, aside form the identity and background of this profane man, the depth of the calamity which he has created by producing the anti-Islam movie is indescribable. He insulted the most revered and honored personality of the Muslim world who is considered to be an intermediary between the people on earth and the Almighty God. Prophethood is among the main pillars of Islam as a universally-acclaimed faith, and 1.5 billion Muslims, from all races, languages and sects believe that Prophet Muhammad is the last divine prophet inspired by God. Muslims believe that the Holy Quran is a miracle of Prophet Muhammad and that Allah has sent the verses of Quran word by word upon the heart of prophet. Muslims don’t touch the words and pages of Quran when they have not performed wudu (proper religious ablution to say prayers or read the Holy Quran). These are not simply traditional customs, but beliefs which are intertwined with the hearts and souls of the true believers.

The majority of U.S. media and politicians issued condemnations; but condemnation of what? They condemned the wave of anger that has swept the Middle East and North Africa and led to the killing of U.S. ambassador to Libya and other attacks on the U.S. diplomatic missions around the world including in India, Tunisia, Yemen, Pakistan, Sudan and even such European countries as Greece, Denmark and Belgium. Apologies were also made, but not by the U.S. officials over the release of the blasphemous movie which broke the hearts of millions of Muslims; rather, by the leaders of some countries in which the U.S. diplomatic missions were attacked.

The heated protests of the Muslims across the globe which the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has ardently rebuked come as a natural consequence of the ugly and dreadful assaults of the United States and other Western nations against Islam. When they flagrantly abuse the concept of “freedom of speech” to justify their blasphemous insults to Islam and its sanctities, it’s clear that the Muslims will intrinsically burst into anger and respond fiercely.

The West-directed campaign against Muslims has been underway for a long time, but revamped and revitalized in the recent years, especially following the 9/11 attacks and when President Bush declared his War on Terror, which some political commentators see as a War on Islam.
In September 2005, the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published offensive cartoons of Prophet Muhammad, leading to a worldwide controversy which lasted for several months.

In 2006, the extremist, right-wing Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders produced an inflammatory, insulting movie titled “Fitna” in which he directed baseless and funny accusations against Islam, including the claim that Islam supports violence and terrorism. As written by Kaiser Bengali in The Express Tribune, “Wilders’ ideas struck a chord in mainstream politics across Europe. France and Belgium banned veils that covered the face and Switzerland barred the construction of new minarets following a referendum. Anders Breivik, a Norwegian Christian extremist, who killed nearly 80 people outside Oslo to express his anti-Islamist sentiments, had cited Wilders’ anti-Islamic views in his online manifesto.”

Other attacks were sporadically launched on Islam and Muslims until 2011 when the insane pastor of an evangelical church in the U.S. named Terry Jones burnt some copies of the Holy Quran on the anniversary of 9/11 attacks and sparked international anger. The publicity stunt later confessed in an interview that he had never read the Quran and even did not know Prophet Muhammad.
And now, the anti-Islam and anti-Muslim attacks have been manifested in the form of the sacrilegious movie which the neo-conservative commentator of The Wall Street Journal has described as a film which “nobody has seen” and depicts Prophet Muhammad “in a, well, unflattering light.”

The duplicitous and hypocritical reaction of the Western politicians and media to the movie and their justification that its screening and distribution is acceptable according to the value of “freedom of speech” is a testimony that they have never been sincere in their claims and that they are intentionally inattentive to and careless about the sensitivities of some 1.5 billion people around the world.
If freedom of speech is a universal value, then it should not be limited when it comes to criticizing Israel and talking about its dominance over the U.S. Congress and mass media. At any rate, the Western freedom of speech has once again been translated into a hideous and detestable form of hate crime and blasphemy.

-###-

– Kourosh Ziabari is an Iranian freelance journalist. He has interviewed political commentator and linguist Noam Chomsky, member of New Zealand parliament Keith Locke, Australian politician Ian Cohen, member of German Parliament Ruprecht Polenz, former Mexican President Vicente Fox, former U.S. National Security Council advisor Peter D. Feaver, Nobel Prize laureate in Physics Wolfgang Ketterle, Nobel Prize laureate in Chemistry Kurt Wüthrich, Nobel Prize laureate in biology Robin Warren, famous German political prisoner Ernst Zündel, Brazilian cartoonist Carlos Latuff, American author Stephen Kinzer, syndicated journalist Eric Margolis, former aSiddiqiistant of the U.S. Department of the Treasury Paul Craig Roberts, American-Palestinian journalist Ramzy Baroud, former President of the American Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Sid Ganis, American international relations scholar Stephen Zunes, American singer and songwriter David Rovics, American political scientist and anthropologist William Beeman, British journalist Andy Worthington, Australian author and blogger Antony Loewenstein, Iranian geopolitics expert Pirouz Mojtahedzadeh, American historian and author Michael A. Hoffman II and Israeli musician Gilad Atzmon.

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Panetta: Unilateral U.S. Military Intervention in Syria Big Mistake

 
Local Editor
 
US Defense Secretary Leon PanettaUS Defense Secretary Leon Panetta warned Thursday against unilateral U.S. military intervention in Syria, stressing that making a decision in this regard would be “a grave mistake”.

Panetta made his remarks while commenting on the speech delivered by Emir of Qatar Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani at the United Nations General Assembly Wednesday.

“The call of Emir of Qatar for military intervention in Syria will not change my conviction that such an intervention would be “a serious mistake,” Panetta told reporters at the Pentagon.

“The best approach is the international diplomatic and economic pressure on (the Syria President) Bashar al-Assad to step down,” he said.

The US Defense Secretary stated that once the international community decides to take a military action if necessary “we (the US administration) will be a part of it.” However, a unilateral US military intervention in Syria would be a “grave mistake.”

Panetta noted that the US is working with other countries to help the Syrian opposition and to provide the for those affected by the violence in Syria with humanitarian assistance, stressing that US officials are watching closely the sites of chemical and biological weapons in the Arab country.

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