Syrian Army Tightens Grip in Joubar, Rural Damascus

Local Editor

Syrian Arab ArmySyrian army units continued operations against terrorists in several areas across the country, killing and wounding large numbers of them, razing their dens and destroying their weaponry and ordnance, state-run SANA news agency reported.

In rural Damascus, army carried out a series of intensive operations against dens of terrorist organizations in Joubar and the surrounding areas, tightening the grip around them.

A military source told SANA that the army killed a number of terrorists and wounded many others, some of them of the Kuwaiti and Palestinian nationalities.

It added that the accurate strikes of the army in Joubar lead to the collapse of the armed terrorist organizations and polarize their leaderships.

Meanwhile, the source told SANA field reporter that a warehouse of ammunition and weapons was destroyed at al-Manasher roundabout.

The army units foiled terrorists’ attempt to sneak into safe areas in Khan al-Sheeh in Damascus countryside, killing and injuring scores of them.

A military source told SANA that the army units targeted terrorists’ dens and gatherings in al-Husseiniyeh farms in Khan al-Sheeh area in the southern countryside of Damascus, killing and injuring scores of them, in addition to destroying their equipment.

The source added that another army unit foiled terrorists’ attempt to sneak to the east of al-Salam Highway, killing and injuring many of them.

In Aleppo city and countryside, army units targeted terrorists’ gatherings and dens, killing scores of them, in addition to destroying a number of vehicles equipped with heavy machineguns.

A military source told SANA reporter that the army targeted terrorists’ gatherings and dens in the surrounding of the Air Force Academy, al-Nairab Airport, the Industrial City, al-Shaqeef, Kuroum Aziza, Tal Qarah, Tal Na’am, Tal Sha’eir, Qadi Askar and Bustan al-Qasser in the city and countryside of the province.

The source added that another army unit killed most members of a terrorist group in Bustan al-Basha area. Terrorists Maher Mustafa Othman, Mohammed Ahmad al-Fares and Hassan Salah Saleh were identified among the dead.

Six cars, some of which are equipped with heavy machineguns, were destroyed and scores of terrorists were killed in al-Zakwaniyeh and Khan al-Asal in the countryside of Aleppo.

Units of the armed forces carried out a series of intensive operations against terrorists’ dens in Homs and its countryside, killing and injuring many of them.

An army unit repelled terrorists who attempted to infiltrate from al-Waer neighborhood in Homs toward Jisr al-Khrab and al-Ghouta farms, leaving many of them dead and wounded, according to a military source.

The source told SANA reporter that another terrorist infiltration attempt from al-Ghantou village to Jabbourin was foiled, adding that many terrorists were killed and injured.

An army unit destroyed a terrorists’ den with all weapons and ammunition inside of it, in addition to killing a number of terrorists in the area between the villages of al-Sultaniyeh and Salam Sharqi in the eastern countryside of Homs, also destroying a bulldozer which the terrorists were using for fortifying their positions to the south of Salam Sharqi.

In Idlib countryside, a military source told SANA that the army units carried out operations against terrorists’ dens and gatherings in several areas, inflicting heavy losses upon them.

The source added that the army units destroyed terrorists’ dens and gatherings in Baidar Shamso, Saraqib, Sarjeh and Ma’ret al-Nouman in Idleb countryside, killing and injuring scores of them.

The source pointed out that the engineering units dismantled a number of explosive devices, which were set to be detonated remotely and planted in Tal Salmo village to the south of Adu Duhour Airport.

Meanwhile, units of army and armed forces destroyed terrorists’ dens, killing and injuring many of them in the city and countryside of Daraa province.

A military source told SANA reporter that terrorists’ dens were targeted south to Shariaa School, near SyriaTel building, the surrounding of al-Yarmouk School, east to al-Baneen School and the surrounding of al-Omari Mosque in Daraa al-Balad. The operation resulted in killing and wounding many terrorists and the destruction of their weapons.

Other army units targeted terrorist gatherings in al-Hrak city, Izr’a crossroads, Khrab al-Shahem – al-Yadouda road, Da’el and Enkhil in the countryside of Daraa.

A car was destroyed with all terrorists on board on al-Jabiyeh – Nawa road.

Army units killed scores of terrorists and destroyed their vehicles and equipment in a series of operations against their gatherings in Quneitra and its countryside.

A military source told SANA reporter that an army unit destroyed 10 vehicles with all terrorists inside and targeted terrorists’ dens and gatherings south to al-Samadaniyeh al-Gharbiye, east to Ein al-Dareb, Tal Kroum Jaba, Majdoulia forest, al-Ajraf, Beer Ajam in the countryside of the province.

Other units of the armed forces targeted a convoy of terrorists’ cars on the road linking al-Rwayhaniyeh and Um Batna and another gathering for their cars in al-Mishrefeh land and Rasm al-Shouli in the province. The operation resulted in killing and injuring scores of terrorists.

Meanwhile, the army killed many terrorists and destroyed their weapons and ammunition on the axis of Um al-Ezam – Um Batna, and in the city of Quneitra, near the bank and in the surrounding of al-Golan Hospital and Tishreen Farm.

Army units killed terrorists from the “Islamic State in Iraq and Syria” organization in the neighborhoods of al-Hwaika, al-Rushdieh, al-Ardi, al-Sina’a and al-Jbaileh in Deir Ezzor city, destroying their weaponry and ammunition.

A source in the province told SANA that the terrorists Hamza al-Afin and Nazir al-Hassan were identified among the killed terrorists.

Source: Websites

31-08-2014 – 21:09 Last updated 31-08-2014 – 21:09

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


Eva Bartlett

Imperial Abduction: The Globalization of Residential Schooling:

-Maximilian Forte

“In Canada, there have been official government apologies for the abuses committed during the residential schooling era (which lasted until 1996), plus monetary compensation, and a truth and reconciliation commission that was constituted and recently finished its work. Nonetheless the fundamental ethos of residential schooling has not only been preserved, it has been amplified into a template containing the basic operating instructions for how to approach peoples around the world who are understood to be inferior. Such inferiority can be understood, for example, in the way that other people’s governments, no matter how indisputably democratic or legitimate they may be, are consistently treated as if they were disposable.

Residential schooling in Canada and its counterpart systems in Australia and the US, all intended to “save” Native children, to “educate” and thus “improve” them, is reflective of a classic settler state ideology of the late 1800s, which emphasized evolutionary progress through assimilation. It is not an unfamiliar ideology either, for those familiar with the thinking behind “modernization” theory and the basic thrust of international developmentalism. What is interesting to note is that it is only out of these same settler states that ideas of the “responsibility to protect” (R2P) emerged and were propagated at the UN in recent years. The main actors who articulated and advocated for R2P have been primarily Canadian and Australian.

The globalization of residential schooling means that certain basic working principles now constitute a template that is applied to a broader set of international relations, as well as revamped forms of counterinsurgency in foreign military occupations. This template consists of the following elements:

the binary between racially and/or culturally differentiated tutors and wards;
a process of abduction, understood broadly, and exemplified by such phenomena as the international traffic in non-western babies in the adoption industry, to the re-implementation of the trusteeship system, to the neoliberal destruction of state-regulated economies and the military occupation of other nations—thus the seizure of individuals and nation-states, rendering them more or less captive to agendas imposed by western powers; and,
what is still essentially a civilizing mission cloaked as “humanitarianism,” the defence of “human rights,” or “democracy promotion”—that is, ideological narratives and their corresponding practices whose aim is sill that of “saving the natives from themselves” and to prepare them for life in the white man’s world (the “international community,” or “the community of civilized nations”), so that they may lead productive lives as law-abiding, well mannered servants of the global capitalist economy.

What “abduction” can also mean is that in order for “us” (the interventionists) to presume to “care” for little known and even less understood strangers, these “others” must be seen as living in a state of some sort of neglect and unfulfilled need. That other thus becomes like an object that is first “seized” so that it can be set free. That other is an object set low within a hierarchy, one that resembles old cultural evolutionist schemes where Europeans were always at the top, and Africans locked far down below in a Paleolithic time zone awaiting redemption. Western “humanitarianism” thus works within an imperialist ideological framework: that object—for example an Africa once again imagined as a zone of ultimately helpless destitution—needs our “protection” (we are the prime actors, they are the terrain upon which we act)….

… when we in Canada “apologize” for an institution such as residential schooling, for what are we really apologizing? What have we learned about ourselves and our basic values and working assumptions? The answer to both questions unfortunately appears to be: little or nothing.”


James Corbett’s interviews on “Canada’s Genocide”:

Episode 077 – Canada’s Genocide: link to audio

“Canadians enjoy an international image based on peacekeeping and goodwill…but Canadian history harbours its own dark secrets. Join us on The Corbett Report as we talk to Kevin Annett about what the Canadian government has hidden from history and we highlight the work of native activist Splitting The Sky.”

Corbett Report Radio 040 – Canada’s Genocide with Kevin Annett: link to audio

“Tonight we talk to Kevin Annett of about the hidden genocide of native schoolchildren that took place in the Canadian residential school system. We hear about Kevin’s remarkable story trying to bring this hidden history to the public and some of the grisly discoveries made last month that put an end to the debates and whitewashes about what really happened at the schools. (blog)
Hidden From History (Information and Documentary)
Hidden No Longer (free PDF book)

200 Palestinian Bodies Found in Tel Aviv Mass Graves

Local Editor

Zionist entity: mass grave in Tel AvivIt has been revealed that the remains of dozens of Palestinians killed during the Zionist war on Arabs in 1948 were found in six mass graves in the Jaffa district of Tel Aviv on Wednesday.

The graves were found when ground subsided as builders carried out renovation work in the area, an official at the Muslim cemetery there told AFP.

The bodies are believed to belong to the victims of a massacre carried out by right-wing Jewish militias in the former Arab district.

As-Safri newspaper reported that up to 200 bodies may be in the graves, with an unknown additional number in the other graves.

‘The remains belong to people of different ages, including women, children and the elderly, some of which bear signs of violence,’ Researcher and historian Mahmoud Obeid said.

Around 760,000 Palestinians were forced out of their homes in the war, many of them still living as refugees in Jordan.

Source: Websites

31-08-2014 – 18:15 Last updated 31-08-2014 – 19:44
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The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!


Eva Bartlett

 *graphic by Tim Anderson

Wahhabis, the Brotherhood and the Empire: Syria and the Limits of Political Islam (1/2):

By Tim Anderson, Paper at the ‘Competing Visions in the Muslim World’ conference, University of Sydney, 14-16 August 2013

**excerpts [full article on Tim Anderson’s FB page]

“A collaboration between the Egyptian Government and the US and Israel began in the late 1970s, while Syria maintained its independence. The current alliance between Iran and Syria has much to do with that common anti-imperialism. It is hardly a coincidence that these two are the only countries of the region not to host US military bases, and are thus both subject to intense ‘regime change’ pressures.

Iran’s second distinction is in having an overwhelming majority (around 95%) of Shia Muslims. So while apostasy is a contentious issue in Iran’s Islamic Republic, it can be seen from a more relaxed position at home, along with a sensitivity to the position of Shia minorities in regional countries such as Pakistan, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Syria and Egypt. There seems no real Iranian Shia equivalent of the Wahhabi-Salafi doctrine of ‘takfir’, where people may be denounced and attacked simply for having a different faith.

For the above reasons, I suggest, a different set of considerations must apply when considering Islamism in Iran. On the other hand, a common Salafi network exists in Egypt, Palestine, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and many of the Gulf states, coordinated for almost a century by a political group known as the Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwan: the brothers). Because this network does indeed represent an intolerant Salafi current within Sunni Islam, it links with the Saudi current of Wahhabism and has been engaged in big power collaboration for most of its existence. As the relationship between western hegemony and the most intolerant of Muslim sects may not at first glance seem apparent, a little history is called for.

The British were the modern experts of imperial rule, but they learned lessons from the Romans, putting divisive forces to work, at first in India, then in the Middle East. ‘Divide et empera [Divide and rule] was the old Roman motto’ wrote Lord William Elphinston in 1859, to an inquiry set up to investigate a mid-nineteenth century armed rebellion, ‘and it should be ours’ (in Desai 1948: 354). After that rebellion Sir John Lawrence reorganised the Bengal Army into a variety of ethnically diverse regiments (Mehta and Patwardhan 1942: 57). Similarly, British Secretary of State Charles Wood wrote in an 1862 letter to Governor General of India, Lord Elgin: ‘We have maintained our power in India by playing one part against the other and we must continue to do so. Do all you can, therefore, to prevent all having a common feeling’ he directed (Wood 1862; Pande 1987). This campaign of divide and rule would extend into emphasising ethnic divisions in school curricula. Secretary of State Viscount Cross wrote to the colonial Viceroy Dufferin in 1887: ‘This division of religious feeling is greatly to our advantage and I look forward for some good as a result of your Committee of Inquiry on Indian Education and on teaching material’ (in Pande 1987). After the formation of a unified anti-colonial front, the Indian National Congress, British administrators searched for ways to divide it. So Secretary of State, George Francis Hamilton, wrote to Governor General Lord Curzon: ‘If we could break the educated Hindu party [Congress] into two sections holding widely different views we should, by such a division, strengthen our position against the subtle and continuous attack which the spread of education must make upon our system of government’ (Hamilton in Curzon 1899: Sept 20). He knew the empire was unviable, against a united people.

By the early 20th century K.B. Krishna (1939) noted that ‘divide and rule’ was practised widely across the British Empire: including in Ceylon, Ireland, Palestine and Kenya. He described the fomenting of ‘communalism’ as a key element of British administrative policy toward India; yet he argued that the struggle for national independence required complete opposition to this ‘communalism’ (Desai 1948).

After World War One and the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, British administrators looked for likely divisive collaborators in the Arab world. First in their sights was the Saud family, with their highly sectarian doctrine of Wahhabism. The Saudis both horrified and fascinated the British. Winston Churchill wrote that King Ibn Saud’s Wahhabis:

‘hold it as an article of duty, as well as of faith, to kill all those who do not share their opinions and to make slaves of their wives and children. Women have been put to death in Wahhabi villages for simply appearing in the street’ (Churchill 1921).

Nevertheless, Churchill would later write: ‘my admiration for [Ibn Saud] was deep, because of his unfailing loyalty to us’ (Churchill 1953). A British Government memo from the mid-1940s noted that ‘Ibn Saud’s influence in the Middle East is very great, and it has been used consistently for a number of years in support of our policy’ (Wikeley 1945; see also Sheikh 2007: 47).

When Egyptian President Nasser emerged in the 1950s as the hero of Arab nationalism (having nationalised the Suez Canal and defeated a planned British and French invasion), the USA began to take an interest in the Saudi royal family. US President Eisenhower was looking for: ‘a high class Machiavellian plan to split the Arabs and defeat the aims of our enemies [the Soviet Union] … building up King Saud as a counterweight to Nasser’. Eisenhower said: ‘The King could be built up, possibly as a spiritual leader. Once this was accomplished, we might begin to urge his right to political leadership’ (in Curtis 2012, 62, 68). The close US-Saudi relationship, to this day, is not simply that of global power and oil supplier, but rather that of the great power with a principal political collaborator in the region, and one with a long record of sectarianism.

The other regional collaborator was less reliable but had a wider, popular network. The Muslim Brotherhood was formed by Hassan al Banna in Egypt in the 1920s. At first the Brotherhood opposed British influence. They wanted independence, but their narrow Salafist views drew them into competition with Arab nationalism, which was more inclusive and far more popular. From this competition it was soon seen that the followers of al-Banna, ‘instead of railing against non-Muslim and Western colonial or imperialist powers’, began to ‘denounce the Muslim rulers’ (Butterworth 1992: 35).

The British initially tried to suppress the Muslim Brotherhood, during World War 2; but pro-British monarch King Farouk began to fund the Brotherhood in 1940. Farouk was said to have seen the Brotherhood ‘as a useful counter to the power of … the secular, nationalist Wafd Party’ (Curtis 2012: 24). In 1941 British intelligence regarded the MB as ‘the most serious danger to public security’ in Egypt (in Lia 1998: 181); yet ‘by 1942 Britain had definitely begun to finance the Brotherhood’ (Curtis 2012: 24). They sought to further divide the group. The British agreed ‘an effort would be made to create a schism in the party by exploiting any differences which might occur between Hassan al Banna and Ahmed al-Sukkari (another Brotherhood leader)’ (British Embassy Cairo, 1942).

The CIA was said to have been backing the Muslim Brotherhood, while the Saudis funded it, by the end of the 1950s. The Saudis liked the Brotherhood’s ‘ultra-conservative politics and its virulent hatred of Arab communists’ (Draitser 2012). The two currents were different but found many points of convergence. While Wahhabism had begun in an openly sectarian way, the Muslim Brotherhood began as a reaction to European domination and cultural invasion (Commins 2009: 140-141). Yet both aimed to create a community of believers. Covert relations between the foreign powers, the Wahhabis and the Brotherhood set the terms for collaborations across the region.

The Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt had a history which ran from political negotiations to assassinations and sectarian attacks. The group was banned and many imprisoned under almost all regimes. In the late 1970s, when Muslim Brotherhood linked militants assassinated Egypt’s President Anwar al-Sadat, there was further repression of the group and a public debate ensued over the legitimacy of attacks on ‘apostates’. A justification of the assassination was written by Abd al-Salam Faraj, arguing that Muslims had neglected ‘at their peril’ the imperative of the holy struggle (jihad), and the battle against apostasy. In the Salafi-Takfiri tradition he argued that the violent overthrow of apostate regimes was ‘the only path to guarantee the establishment of a truly Islamic state’ (Akhavi 1992: 95). In a subsequent denunciation and fatwa against this tract, from Egypt’s leading cleric, Mufti Ali Jadd al-Haqq, the Mufti acknowledged the Quranic references relied on by Faraj but drew attention to 124 other verses ‘that counsel patience or abjuring armed conflict with the non-Muslims in a spirit of peaceful persuasion’ (Akhavi 1992: 95-97). None of this seems to have much influenced the tactics of the Brotherhood, still less the foreign powers.

By the mid-1980s Washington and London, in efforts to dislodge Soviet troops in Afghanistan, were funding the most vicious of sectarian Islamists, including many well known for atrocities against civilians. Hadji Abdul Haq, who admitted bombing a civilian aircraft in 1984, was received as a ‘freedom fighter’ in 1986 by Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan (Curtis 2012: 145). Millions in US aid went to Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, famous for throwing acid in women’s faces, skinning his opponents alive and slaughtering rival groups. Hekmatyar worked closely with Osama bin Laden and visited British officials in London in 1986 and 1988 (Keddie 2006: 118; Curtis 2012: 146). He remains linked to the US-backed Afghan regime. Saudi Osama bin Laden enjoyed US support in the 1980s but fell out with Washington over US military bases in Saudi Arabia.  He organised several attacks on US targets in the region and was suspected (but never charged) of masterminding the September 2001 terrorist attacks on New York, which killed three thousand people. Bin Laden’s 2011 obituary in the New York Times refers to: ‘Freedom fighter Osama bin Laden in 1989 … building his terrorism network, with American help’ (Zernike and Kaufman 2011).

After the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, Washington began to speak of a ‘New Middle East’, which might be facilitated not so much by further direct invasions but by what Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called a ‘constructive chaos’. This could generate conditions of conflict, upheaval and transformation throughout the region, allowing the United States, Britain, and Israel to redraw the map in accordance with their geo-strategic needs and objectives (Nazemroaya 2006). Consistent with this ambition, Israel mounted an abortive attack on South Lebanon, in an attempt to weaken the Iranian-allied Lebanese Shia group, Hezbollah. Saudi Arabia, obsessed by what it saw as the threat of a ‘Shia Crescent’ which could link Iran, Iraq, Syria and South Lebanon (see e.g. Khashoggi 2013), then funded Salafi groups to attack both Shia and Christian civilians in Iraq, to destabilise a likely Shia dominated regime in Baghdad (IRIN 2007).

In 2007 retired US General Wesley Clarke published a memoir which revealed that, back in late 2001, there was a Pentagon plan to topple seven Middle Eastern governments in five years, ‘starting with Iraq and Syria and ending with Iran’ (Conason 2007). Regional collaborators would be important for this task.

At a practical level, the political economic program of the Muslim Brotherhood remains far from the mix of democratic and socialist ideas adopted by most Arab nationalist platforms. It was dominated by middle level merchant and landowning classes, and combined charitable relations reaching across classes. It functioned ‘like a parallel society: richer members provide poorer members with food, medicine and clothing through financial donations’ (Hansen 2012). In Egypt as in Syria it reinforced private property and private enterprise relations, consistent with the economic agenda of its occasional western patrons. Magda Kandil of the Egyptian Centre for Economic Studies said of the Egyptian Brotherhood: ‘It’s very easy to confuse their economic platform with that of the previous regime: private-led growth, free market economy, scaling down the role of government, empowering the private sector’, she says. ‘The big difference is which private sector you are talking about’ (Hansen 2012).

The Brotherhood claims to represent all Sunnis, but certainly does not. By the 1980s in Sunni-dominated Palestine, for example, the Brotherhood’s political strategy (as in Egypt) was a primary phase of transforming the Palestinians into an Islamic society, and a second stage of waging a holy struggle against Israel. This meant that nationalist Palestinians were targeted before the occupying power. Yet polls showed this strategy had less than 10% support amongst the Palestinian population, which broadly backed the PLO’s unified nationalist agenda (Shadid 1988: 677-680). Further, other Sunni Islamist groups, such as Islamic Jihad, stayed within the PLO and maintained strong relations across Sunni-Shia lines, including with Iran (Shadid 1988: 677). Israel, for its part, was well aware of this strategy and regarded such internal division as an asset. It saw that ‘any success by the Brotherhood would be at the expense of the nationalists [PLO]; consequently the latter will be weakened’. One result was that ‘the Brotherhood is treated less harshly [by the Israelis] than the nationalists’ (Shadid 1988: 674-675).

Islamists can point to opinion polls which show strong support for Islamic law in the region. Strong majorities in many countries (e.g. 74% in Egypt, 89% in the Palestinian territories) support sharia to be ‘the official law of the land’. However those same polls show similarly strong majorities supporting freedom of religion for people of other faiths. This effective anti-Salafism is said to be partly due to the idea that sharia only applies to Muslims, partly because of widely varying views of what sharia law means and partly due to differences over what role religious leaders should play in politics (Pew Research Centre 2013: 9). Strong majorities of Muslims in most countries (e.g. 67% in Egypt, 67% in Tunisia, 68% in Iraq) are concerned about extremist groups, and particularly about Islamic extremists (Pew Research Centre 2013: 11).

All this suggests that Salafi-style attacks on apostates have little support amongst Muslims.

Further, the sectarianism of the Brotherhood has worried minorities – that is, all non-Sunni Muslims, Christians and others – from the beginning. Minorities in the early years, as now, felt themselves in a ‘precarious’ position in face of the Muslim Brotherhood’s discriminatory and threatening approach (Hourani 1947: 21-25).

Nevertheless, foreign powers in the Middle East have decided to make occasional alliances with the Brotherhood as it is the ‘oldest, largest and most influential Islamist organisation’. It is obvious that the Brotherhood has much ugly sectarianism but, what is thought important from the US perspective, is that ‘there is a current within the Brotherhood willing to engage with the United States’. Perhaps to make the relationship more palatable, it is argued that ‘this current … has pushed much of the Brotherhood towards moderation’ (Leiken and Brooke 2007: 107). ‘Policymakers should recognise that the Muslim Brotherhood represents a notable opportunity’. This approach speaks of ‘divide and engage’, and to adopt a ‘case by case’ approach to engagement with Brotherhood Islamists (Leiken and Brooke 2007: 121). This demonstrates the ongoing appeal of the Brotherhood to hegemonic strategy.”


**Part 2, excerpts [full article at Tim Anderson’s FB page]

“With the Ba’th system well entrenched, the Brotherhood banned for its violent attacks and President Hafez al Assad showing few concessions to Islamism, the Islamist group began a series of bold and bloody insurrectionary moves. The group’s takfiri thinking was demonstrated in 1979 when it launched a series of attacks on Alawis, as well as government officials, including the massacre of several dozen young Alawi cadets at an Aleppo military school (Seale 1988: 325).

The government jailed and executed many Brotherhood members, accusing the group of being subservient to Israel and the US. In April 1980 armed clashes in Aleppo left more than a thousand dead (Seale 1988: 328; Talhamy 2009: 567). By mid-1980, according to US intelligence, President Hafez al Asad had ‘broken the back’ of the Brotherhood’s rebellion. Despite this, a new strategy was launched in 1981, after death of Brotherhood leader Issam Attar, with the aim of an Alawite coup. However the plot was exposed and the Brotherhood ‘felt pressured into initiating’ an uprising in their stronghold of Hama (DIA 1982).

As Patrick Seale describes it, the uprising in Hama began this way:

‘At 2am on the night of 2-3 February 1982 an army unit combing the old city fell into an ambush. Roof top snipers killed perhaps a score of soldiers … [Brotherhood leader] Abu Bakr [Umar Jawwad] gave the order for a general uprising … hundreds of Islamist fighters rose … by the morning some seventy leading Ba’athists had been slaughtered and the triumphant guerrillas declared the city ‘liberated’ (Seale 1988: 332).

The Syrian Arab Army responded with a huge force of about 12,000 and the battle raged for three weeks. It was a civil war, and there were defections. Seale continues:

‘As the tide turned slowly in the government’s favour, the guerrillas fell back into the old quarters … after heavy shelling, commandos and party irregulars supported by tanks moved in … many civilians were slaughtered in the prolonged mopping up, whole districts razed’ (Seale 1988: 333).

Final accounts of the casualties vary, with the independent, more contemporary accounts putting a total death toll at between 2,000 and 10,000. US intelligence wrote: ‘The total causalities for the Hama incident probably number about 2,000. This includes an estimated 300 to 400 members of the Muslim Brotherhood’s elite ‘Secret Apparatus’ (DIA 1982: 7). Patrick Seale notes that government forces also suffered heavy losses, but that ‘large numbers died in the hunt for the gunmen … government sympathizers estimating a mere 3,000 and critics as many as 20,000 … a figure of 5,000 to 10,000 could be close to the truth’ He adds: ‘The guerrillas were formidable opponents. They had a fortune in foreign money … [and] no fewer than 15,000 machine guns’ (Seale 1988: 335). Subsequent accounts have often inflated the casualties.

Hafez blamed a large scale foreign conspiracy for the Hama insurrection. Seale observes that he was ‘not paranoical’, as many US weapons were captured and foreign backing had come from several US collaborators: King Hussayn of Jordan, Lebanese Christian militias (the Israeli-aligned ‘Guardians of the Cedar’) and Saddam Hussein in Iraq (Seale 1988: 336-337). Despite the US hand in the conflict, US intelligence held the outcome at arm’s length, dryly observing that: ‘the Syrians are pragmatists who do not want a Muslim Brotherhood government’ (DIA 1982: vii).

Almost 30 years later the insurrection in Dara in March 2011 began in a very similar way, but under the cover of political reform rallies and counter pro-government rallies, sparked by the much publicised ‘Arab Spring’. But this was to be another ‘Islamist Spring’. There were reports, several days before the rallies of mid-March, of arms being smuggled into the country (Reuters 2011), and then being distributed from Dara’s al-Omari Mosque (Truth Syria 2012). Yet many western media accounts ignored the armed insurrection, maintaining a remarkably monolithic ‘peaceful protestors’ line, for many months. Understanding some of the detail is important.[Reuters: Syria says seizes weapons smuggled from Iraq]

In early March some teenagers in Daraa were arrested for graffiti that had been copied from North Africa ‘the people want to overthrow the regime’. It was reported that they were abused by local police. Time magazine reported that President Assad intervened, the local governor was sacked and the teenagers were released. What followed was highly contested. The western media version is that protestors burned and trashed government offices and that ‘provincial security forces opened fire on marchers, killing several’ (Abouzeid 2011). After that, ‘protestors’ staged demonstrations in front of the al-Omari mosque, but were in turn attacked’. The demonstrations were said to involve crowds of up to 300,000, with 15 anti-government ‘protesters’ killed (AP 2011). Yet Dara is a border town with just 150,000 inhabitants.

The Syrian government, on the other hand, stated that armed attacks had begun on security forces, killing several police, along with the burning of government offices. There was corroboration of this account. While its headline blamed security forces for killing ‘protesters’, the British Daily Mail showed pictures of guns, AK47 rifles and hand grenades that security forces had recovered from the al-Omari mosque. The report notes that ‘an armed gang’ had opened fire on an ambulance, killing ‘a doctor, a paramedic and a policeman’ (Daily Mail 2011). Israeli and Lebanese media also gave versions of the events of 17-18 March closer to that of the Syrian government. An Israel news report said ‘seven police officers and at least four demonstrators in Syria have been killed’, while the Ba’ath party headquarters and courthouse ‘were torched’. Police had been targeted by rooftop snipers (Queenan 2011).

Al Jazeera (2011), owned by Qatar’s royal family, key financial backers of the Muslim Brotherhood, implied the rooftop snipers in Dara were government forces, however the claim that secret police snipers were killing ‘soldiers and protestors alike’ was both illogical and out of sequence. The armed forces came to Dara because police had been killed by snipers. Once in Dara they engaged in a fire-fight and stormed the Omari mosque to seize the arms. Saudi official Anwar Al-Eshki would later confirm to the BBC that these arms had indeed been provided to militants in Dara, supposedly for self-defence (Truth Syria 2012). However evidence shows these arms were provided before the violence broke out.

Despite this the western media, almost unanimously, went on to report for many months that armed opposition in Syria did not exist. Government violence was said to have been used against ‘peaceful protestors’. Only many months later did these protestors take up arms. The US-based group Human Rights Watch claimed ‘protestors only used violence against the security forces’ in response to killings by the security forces or ‘as a last resort’ (HRW 2011). This was a terrible deceit. Washington’s allies – at first Saudi Arabia then later Qatar, Turkey and some elements in Lebanon – were sponsoring the armed insurrection, through established Brotherhood channels. In October 2011 the Istanbul-based Arab history academic Professor Jeremy Salt observed: ‘The claim that armed opposition to the government has begun only recently is a complete lie. The killings of soldiers, police and civilians, often in the most brutal circumstances, have been going on virtually since the beginning’ (Salt 2011).

On 28 March the head of the Syrian Brotherhood, Muhammad Riyad Al-Shaqfa, issued a statement which left no doubt that the group’s aim was sectarian, the enemy was ‘the secular regime’ and Brotherhood members ‘have to make sure that the revolution will be pure Islamic, and with that no other sect would have a share of the credit after its success’ (Al-Shaqfa 2011). While playing down the initial role of the Brotherhood, Sheikho confirms that it ‘went on to punch above its actual weight on the ground during the uprising … [due] to Turkish-Qatari support’, and to its general organisational capacity (Sheikho 2013).

The subsequent rise of a ‘Free Syrian Army’ (FSA) – never a centrally commanded army but rather a number of groups loosely coordinated through funders and arms suppliers – was presented in most western analysis as an organic development from the civilian protest marches, in combination with local self-defence committees. The Salafi-jihadi role was played down. One US analyst asserted: ‘The Syrian conflict began as a secular revolt against autocracy. Yet as the conflict protracts … [there is] a small but growing jihadist presence inside Syria … [President] Assad has used the threat of jihadists within the opposition to build support for the regime’ (O’Bagy 2012). Similarly, another US report from 2012 claims: ‘The vast majority of the opposition fighters are legitimate nationalists fighting for the country’s freedom and the establishment of a democratic state … most members within the FSA are pious rather than Islamists and are not motivated by sectarianism’ (Benotman and Naseraldin 2012: 1). Nevertheless, the latter report goes onto categorise the following FSA groups as ‘jihadis’, on the basis of their aim to establish an Islamic state: Jabhat al-Nusra (al Nusra Front), Liwaa’ al-Ummah (Brigade of the Nation), Sukur al-Sham (Falcons of the Levant), al-Dawla al-Islamiyya (the Islamic state) and Ahrar al-Sham (Benotman and Naseraldin 2012: 2).

Who then were these ‘vast majority’ of secular nationalists? The US-aligned International Crisis Group (ICG 2012), noting that ‘the presence of a powerful Salafi strand among Syria’s rebels has become irrefutable’, speaks of ‘a moderate Islamic tradition’ and suggests that two groups which ‘have yet to develop a firm ideology’ might be secular: the Farouq brigade and the Khalid bin Walid brigade, both based in Homs (ICG 2012: i, 6; also Abouzeid 2012a), and the main forces that seized part of that city over 2011-2012. The Farouq Battalion grew out of the Khalid bin Walid Brigade in early 2012 to become the largest single rebel group up to that point in the Syrian conflict (Holliday 2012: 21-22). The Wall Street Journal has called the Farouq brigade ‘pious Sunnis’ rather than Islamists (Malas 2013). In their English language media statements they distance themselves from al Qaeda linked groups, so as not to alienate western support; but in Syria they wear al Qaeda-style black shahada headbands and often sport salafi-style beards (Channel4News 2012); The BBC has called Farouq ‘moderately Islamist’, suggesting they exaggerate their Islamism ‘to attract financial support from the Gulf’ (Marcus 2013).

However, Mortada observes that, ‘most of the al-Farouq Battalion’s members are Salafis, armed and funded by Saudi Arabia while ‘Khalid Ibn al-Walid Battalion is loyal to and supported by the Muslim Brotherhood’ (Mortada 2012). In early April, the Farouq Battalion was accused of collecting Jizyah, or taxes imposed on non-Muslims living under Muslim rule, in Christian areas of Homs province (Al-Haqiqah 2012; Holliday 2012: 27). Sources in the Christian Orthodox Church then accused Farouq of the large scale ethnic cleansing of Christians that took place in Homs in early 2012 (Agenzia Fides 2012). Farouq has been defended by foreign sympathisers, some of whom said the tens of thousands of Christians who left Homs did so just because of the fighting (Al Tamimi 2012). This might be more credible if all the Muslim population of Homs had left, as well; but it did not. Farouq is credibly blamed for blowing up a hospital in Qusayr, to the Islamist chants of ‘Allahu Akhbar’ (0xnevvg3n22 2012); supporters posted the same footage online, blaming this bombing on ‘the regime’ (SyrianDaysOfRage 2012). Yet the Syrian Army does not engage in Islamist chants. If this is the ‘moderate FSA’, we should recall that it was a former Farouk commander, Khalid al Hamad who was infamously shown on video trying to eat a dead Syrian soldier’s heart (Greenfield 2013b). The Khalid Ibn al-Walid group is believed responsible for the use of a child to behead prisoners in Homs (HRI 2012). This is hardly ‘Moderate Islamism’.

While there are a number of other salafi-jihadi groups – such as Umar al-Khattab, Ali Ibn bi-Taleb, Abu Bakr al-Siddiq Rijal Allah, the Ali Ibn Abi-Taleb Brigade, Reef Dimashq Martyrs and al-Radeef al-Thawri (Mortada 2012), as well as various foreign salafi groups (including the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group and the Pakistani Taliban), it is notable that none of the proponents of the ‘secular FSA’ theory seem able to present the names of such groups.

Two distinct features of the conflict attracted great attention in 2012. The first was the constant claims of Bashar al Assad ‘killing his own people’, linked to demands for foreign intervention. This story was driven by a corporate media which closely echoed the ‘regime change’ demands of the US, the UK and France. The UK Guardian, for example, ran a consistently partisan line against what was usually called ‘the Syrian regime’, portraying the conflict in simplistic and sectarian terms: ‘Assad the Alawite, versus the Sunni majority’(Greaves 2013). This is a line which pretends that Ba’athist secular nationalism does not exist. The western media often made use of partisan sources (such as the Free Syrian Army aligned, England-based ‘Syrian Observatory of Human Rights (SOHR) (McFarquar 2013). Nevertheless, two years into the conflict that same SOHR concluded that more than 40 percent of the causalities were government soldiers or pro-government civilians, casting doubt on its repeated assertion that the government of President Bashar al Assad was responsible for an overwhelming majority of the deaths(Enders 2013). British, US and French media sources were backed up by the media channels of Qatar (Al Jazeera) and Saudi Arabia (Al Arabiya), two gulf monarchies who were funding the armed opposition. In early 2012 a number of Al Jazeera journalists, mainly in the Beirut office, resigned over what they said was deliberate manipulation of the channel’s reports on Syria (RT 2012).

A series of claims over civilian massacres ‘by the regime’ were used by the armed opposition in ultimately unsuccessful attempts to secure air force backing from NATO countries. The claims were highly contested. The Syrian government said that the anti-government armed groups had either carried out the killings themselves or were citing killings of armed fighters as civilians. A number of independent articles and analyses have since been published on these massacres, so they will not be detailed here. However the contested accounts of violence include: the Houla massacre (see Anderson 2012; Lendman 2012), the Daraya massacre (see Fisk 2012), the Aqrab massacre (see Thompson 2012), repeated attacks on students at the University of Aleppo (Owen 2013) and the use of Sarin gas in Aleppo (see Hall 2013 and Lauria 2013). In each of these cases FSA spokespeople attempted to use the accusations to incite foreign military intervention.

The use of repeated civilian massacres in attempts to secure international ‘humanitarian’ intervention represents an awful novelty in the annals of war. It demonstrated the danger of that relatively new doctrine of a ‘responsibility to protect’, which had been successfully invoked to secure NATO intervention and thus destroy the Libyan government of Muammar Gaddafi, in 2011(Engdahl, 2011). It has since emerged that many of the accusations against Gaddafi were fabricated (Corbett 2011). While the same strategy had only limited success against the Syrian Government, if even some of the analyses of ‘false flag’ massacres are correct, the ‘responsibility to protect’ doctrine has set up an inducement for the killing of civilians.

The second distinct feature of the recent Syrian conflict has been the very large scale participation of foreign Salafi-jihadis, from a range of countries including Libya, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Iraq, Chechnya, Pakistan and various parts of Europe (Komireddi 2012, Gertz 2013, Kern 2013). This factor demonstrated that the conflict was not simply a national one, between Syrian Islamists and the secular state. The Salafi and Brotherhood forces have been able to prolong their attacks because of the participation of thousands of outside fighters, most often paid by Qatar and Saudi Arabia and trained in Turkey (Draitser 2013).

The US, Britain and France have led a diplomatic offensive, attempting to isolate the Syrian government and to impose successive non-elected groups as the ‘legitimate representatives’ of the Syrian people (Barkan 2013). Along with their regional Islamist collaborators, in particular Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, they have funded and armed the various FSA groups. Turkey has provided training grounds and a staging post for attacks on northern Syria(Edmonds 2013). Qatar has funded the Brotherhood and has provided arms through Turkey, recruiting foreign fighters, for example from Yemen, to be trained by US Special Forces in Qatar before being sent to Syria (Al Alam 2013a). Saudi Arabia, which armed the insurrection from its beginning in March 2011, has backed various foreign Salafi-jihadi groups, including Pakistani Taliban (Press TV 2013).

The role of Israel was cryptic, at least until 2013 when the Zionist state carried out several direct missile attacks on Syria (Gordon 2013), then gave assistance to Islamist fighters on the Golan border (Israel Today 2013). It is clear that Israel backs the ousting of President Bashar al Assad.

In 2012 head of Israel’s northern command, Major General Yair Golan, while focused on Syria’s formidable South Lebanon ally, Hezbollah, said ‘I would be very happy if [Assad] goes (Hayom 2012). Israel has issued what might be considered ‘smokescreen’ statements, saying they prefer secular Bashar to Islamist rebels (Times of Israel 2013), but this does not accord with the broader fear of what they call an ‘axis of evil’ between Iran, Syria and Hezbollah (Hayom 2013). Senior Israeli defence officials have made the issue plain, by saying that ‘al-Qaeda control over Syria would be preferable to a victory by Assad over the rebels’ (Pontz 2013; BICOM 2013).

There are also reports that Israel is selling arms to the Saudis, for use by their client groups in Syria (Alalam 2013b). That is, although both al Qaeda type groups and Syria are seen by Israel as enemies, the squabbling, extremist sectarian groups are as a lesser risk than an organised and disciplined block across three countries. Israel is obsessed with breaking that nexus.

By late 2012 international support for the FSA had weakened somewhat, with widespread news of rebel atrocities (beheadings, public executions) and a steady fracturing of the image, carefully crafted over 2011 and 2012, that the ‘revolution’ was largely a secular uprising, with only marginal participation by religious extremists.

In November 2012, just a little more than six months after the US-led ‘Friends of Syria’ group had installed the exiled Syrian National Council (SNC) as the ‘legitimate representatives’ of the Syrian people, this group was demoted to a component of the ‘National Coalition of Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces’ (Barkan 2013: 1, 4). One of the foreign powers’ aims was said to be to reduce Muslim Brotherhood domination of the group. Despite this, the Brotherhood rapidly came to dominate both this new Coalition and the FSA’s ‘Supreme Military Command’ (SMC) (Draitser 2012). The SMC would gain influence by being made the principal channel of weapons. However two-thirds of the 30 members of this ‘Military Command’ were said to be associated with the Brotherhood, along with some other independent Salafi-Islamists (Barkan 2013: 5). Further, this FSA-SMC grouping does not include Jabhat al-Nusra, the Salafi group most closely linked to al Qaeda in Iraq. There is clearly considerable popular support, amongst the FSA, for al Nusra. When in 2012 the US declared al Nusra as ‘terrorist’, FSA fighters sprang to its defence, 29 FSA groups declaring ‘we are all al Nusra’ (Cockburn 2012). There is thus a loose and sometimes fractious alliance between the Salafi fighters. After entering the war in Qusayr, Hezbollah confirmed that most of the fighters were takfiri groups (Daily Star 2013).

In 2013 General Salim Idriss was appointed head of the SMC. He was an FSA leader in whom Washington was prepared to place some trust (Greenfield 2013a). Idriss made some weak attempts to distance himself from al Nusra, but admitted that [at least] 50 percent of the rebels were Islamists and that he could work ‘alongside’ al Nusra (Greenfield 2013a). Despite suggestions of a battle between the ‘moderate’ FSA and extremists, a series of reports have noted, first, that Islamist fighters dominate and, second, that the Muslim Brotherhood ‘has emerged as the leading western sanctioned force’ in the region, dominating both the SNC and the SMC (Draitser 2012; Barkan 2013). The rivalry between groups seems likely to be power struggles amongst Islamists. The New York Times has observed ‘nowhere in rebel-controlled Syria is there a secular fighting force to speak of’ (Hubbard 2013). Others have noted that the FSA is selling arms to al Nusra (Roggio 2013). The myth of a secular uprising was losing traction, just as the rebels began to suffer significant military defeats, at Qusayr and Homs (Spencer 2013).

The Brotherhood in Syria, as in Egypt, pretended to represent all Sunnis. However this was not the experience in the largely Sunni city of Aleppo. The western media reported a series of FSA commanders in Aleppo complaining about lack of support from local people. ‘I know they hate us’ one told The Guardian (Abdul-Ahad 2012). Time magazine reported another saying: ‘The Aleppans here, all of them, are loyal to the criminal Bashar, they inform on us’ (Abouzeid 2012b). The alienation of Sunni Syrians, what to speak of the minorities, was confirmed by a report carried out for NATO. It estimated that 70% of the Syrian population backed President Assad, and that much of this support came from secular Sunnis who were horrified by FSA atrocities.

‘The people are sick of the war and hate the jihadists more than Assad’, a Western source familiar with the data said. ‘Assad is winning the war mostly because the people are cooperating with him against the rebels’ (World Tribune 2013; Al Manar 2013). The entry of Lebanon’s Hezbollah into the Syrian fighting to re-take the town of al-Qusayr hardly represented a sectarian turn in the fighting. Hezbollah, linked to Shiia communities around al-Qusayr, was fighting alongside a secular Syrian Arab Army and in defence of the secular Syrian state. Hezbollah, despite being Shia Islamist, backs multi-religious political alliances in Lebanon and Syria and rejects Salafi ‘takfiri’ ideas (Haidar 2013).

The Syrian experience indicates that a Political Islam which has the sectarian Muslim Brotherhood and Wahhabism as its dominant currents cannot be a force for inclusive democratic development. This is a matter of history rather than theology. Conversely, the Shia Islamism represented by Hezbollah in Lebanon and the Islamic Republic in Iran has formed alliances across sectarian boundaries, rather than through sectarian politics, also for historical reasons. Shia Hezbollah, Shia Iran (along with secular Syria) have backed the Palestinians – both the secular PLO and Sunni Hamas – as part of an anti-imperialist alliance, and in face of Israeli aggression. There are very few Shia Muslims in Palestine. At home, Hezbollah maintains an alliance with the major Christian faction, thus forming part of the Lebanese Government (Mroueh 2013).

The wider lessons here have much to do with building strong, inclusive nation-states and regional alliances. At the moment Syria and Iran are the only states in the region without US military bases, and that independence attracts hostility. Washington’s hegemonic project over the last decade has been directed at domination of the entire region, and at breaking down independent and strong states. Yet strong states are well recognised as being necessary for participatory human development (Sengupta 2002: 847-8, 853) as well as for effective economic development (Johnson 1982; Amsden 1989). The state remains the principal means by which longer term investment in inclusive institutions, such as in mass education and public health can build both human capacity and strategic advantage for the former colonies. This requires substantial political will, especially in a world with big power ideology which – often in the name of ‘open markets’ and individual freedoms – seeks to disqualify that independent political will.

The experience in Latin America, too, shows that strong states and regional alliances are vital to resisting destabilisation from foreign powers. There is barely a country in Latin America that has not been subject to destabilisation, coup or invasion, backed by Washington (Grandin 2007; Blum 2005). The building of strong regional institutions like the ALBA, UNASUR and CELAC – instigated by the late President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela – is seen as an important counter-weight to such destabilisation (Weisbrot 2013). In the Middle East a similar broad and formal alliance – stretching across Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon to Egypt – would be a nightmare for the foreign powers but could form a great pillar of stable and inclusive development for the peoples of the region.

This paper has tried to demonstrate a series of inter-related propositions.

First, the main forces of Political Islam in the Middle East – Wahhabism and the Muslim Brotherhood – have no capacity to build coherent national or regional structures, as they are mired in a sectarian and collaborationist history.

Second, the foreign powers have consistently, for the last century, incited and worked with divisive and sectarian forces, specifically the Saudi Wahhabis and the Muslim Brotherhood, to help in their plans to dominate the region.

Third, the main forces of Political Islam have been particularly sectarian and ‘takfiri’ in Syria, due to a long history of conflict with a firmly secular Ba’athist regime.

Fourth, the 2011 insurrection in Syria, far from being a popular, secular revolt or a ‘revolution’, was the latest in a series of Islamist insurrections. The tragic violence has been prolonged by large scale foreign backing, including the import of thousands of foreign fighters.

Fifth, the Salafi groups’ use of civilian massacres, in attempts to incite foreign military intervention, presents a dangerous new implication of the new doctrine of a ‘responsibility to protect’. It has set up an inducement for the killing of civilians, to attract partisan military support. Finally, it seems fairly plain that viable and inclusive democratic development in Syria, as in the region, requires secular development, in the sense of cross-community collaboration, with the prospect of forming a regional bloc capable of resisting foreign destabilisation.


*graphic by Tim Anderson

*graphic by Tim Anderson

*graphic by Tim Anderson

No Strategy, No Problem

kenny’s sideshow

jihad fashionistas outfitted by your tax dollars

When Obama announced “we don’t have a strategy yet” for the Islamic Nation (formerly known as the band ISIS) in Iraq and Syria, he was playing his role. It allowed his ‘opponents’in the left/right divide to get some rhetoric in giving appearances of a debate but among the congressional, administration and pentagon war whores, they are all on the same side.

Yeah, just how do we stop our own US and allies creation from doing what they were hired to do? Killing too many of them could be bad for future recruitment and there will always be a need for future mercenary thug recruits in the the next country needing to be broken up.

There is a strategy and this comment from antiwar may be close…..

Whether or not Obama knows it {ed. note, he knows it} he is following a strategy: the Oded Yinon plan. It calls for destabilization of the Middle East, breaking nations into smaller pieces that can be easily dominated by Israel. If the USG doesn’t have a strategy yet, it’s because Tel Aviv hasn’t given it to them.

There’s also, Why Does ISIS Fit In So Perfectly With The PNAC Plan? with plenty of questions that all journalists should be asking bur aren’t.

We’ve heard it all before… The Time Is Ripe For A False-Flag Attack On American Soil. One day these predictions could come true if the desperation for mayhem and total control outweighs all else in the minds of a few psychopaths. Can they fool the American people once again just because they have the major media squawking for them? Maybe not without shutting down the real alternative internet media and setting off big red flags and I think they know it.

So just how is this all going to play out? I’m not at all sure but Oded Yinon  and  PNAC gave us the basic game plan. It’s a work in progress but this is not just about the Middle East. Most everyone in the west will also be affected in one way or another. Henry Kissinger lately suggested that his vision of ‘a new world order’ is in crisis. Translating that is the bastard criminal wants to see some kind of fruition to his life long dream and grunt work for an order by the few and slavery for the many after a culling of the herd. I’m looking forward to the national holiday and the cheers upon his demise but at the same time it may mean he never faced the justice he so rightly deserves… and that would be a shame.

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 the Blog!


By Mark Dankof
Original Source: Mark Dankof’s America

ED Noor: I am posting a commentary to a reader by Arthur Topham as an editorial opening. The uplift of Arthur’s words is almost as important as are Mark’s deep insights to communicate the overall message of this post. Arthur reminds us WHY we fight this fight, what is at stake, and upholds that beacon of hope that we seem to be dropping with increasing frequency as time passes ~ heartening, strengthening, powerful words. I don’t know what well Arthur plumbs for hope, but he goes deep ~ does a wonderful job spreading it when needed. Then you have the magnificently poignant feature piece by Pastor Mark Dankof ~ a man of rare experience and knowledge ~ one of the most sensitive, personal and insightful assessments of our current international situation possible. Personally, I feel it a great privilege to be in the company of such fine men and righteous defenders of what is right. It is an honour to call each of them “friend”.

ED Arthur Topham: This is going to be a bit long. I posted Mark’s article for two reasons. The first was because of the calibre of it and the position that Mark has taken with respect to America. I felt that it conveyed what many people are feeling when they come up against the disproportionate balance of apparent power that appears to have engulfed not only the USA but ALL of the nations of the West including, in seems, India and Australia and New Zealand. It does seem daunting and all pervasive and all powerful. 

But, of course, it isn’t. Or, at least that is my take on it. Were it so, and I’ve been tracking this Beast for many a decade, I would have concluded (maybe) years ago that all was futile. But I haven’t come to that conclusion and I’m highly doubtful that I ever shall. And that is the second reason for publishing Mark’s article. I’m hopeful that it will generate the type of response that you’ve submitted and that it will spark a debate about this very topic. 

We’re not just facing just another enemy that’s breached our defences via some stroke of luck. As I see it we are and have been in the throes of World War III since WWII concluded in 1945. The Jews knew full well at that time the massive victory that they’d achieved and it only spurred them on to further and greater and similar machinations that have never ceased and today they’re so drunk with power that it’s pretty well a sure bet that they won’t stop until the world, collectively, stops them. 

Douglas Reed laid most of the cards on the table by 1956 and predicted that if the world didn’t get a grip on the Jews and on Zionism generally that by the end of the 20th century we’d all be in dire straits. Of course we didn’t get a grip on the Jews throughout the latter half of the last century or at least until around the final decade of it. And so we are now only just coming of age so to speak and all hell is still to be let loose.

I actually don’t think it was humanly possible for people to become aware of the threat that the Zionist Jews posed until the advent of the internet. They had everything sown up prior to then in that they controlled the media. Now, of course, it’s a horse of a different colour and the net is ablaze with the fire of Truth and each and every day more and more decent, truth-seeking and courageous individuals are picking up a torch and raising it high in the air adding to the overall light that’s now breaking across and around the globe.
And so, given the fact that it’s taken the Jews over 500 years to accomplish what they’ve accomplished, the mere span of 25 -30 years since the net has been functioning is really, and relatively, not that long especially when one considers just the past decade and the massive increase in awareness that’s taken place.
It truly has been phenomenal and unless the Jews are able to somehow figure out how to censor the net, the heel of their hellish plans is about to give out and they’ll start to stumble and eventually fall and when they fall it will be a global fall that will sweep away their ill-begotten power and influence forever. 

As I said they aren’t about to stop. They’ve put all their eggs into one basket and labelled it the “New World Order” and they’re going for it whether the world is ready for it or not.

There’s no turning back and because of that fact they’re going to have to face a global population of around 7 billion souls who, sooner or later, are going to become very, very pissed with this elitist group of power-crazed maniacs and there’ll be no telling what they’ll do when push comes to shove. 

As a species and as free individuals we cannot give up. It’s not in our cards to so do regardless of all the bullshit and power shows that are currently occurring around the world, especially in the Middle East and Ukraine.

The human soul cannot grow and flourish under slavery and to give up and succumb to the psychopathy that is the Zionist agenda would result in the stemming of the tide of evolutionary expansion of both spirit consciousness and mind which is something ordained by the Creator from the start and which cannot be altered by mortal hands. 

It’s plainly evident that we are up against Satanic, demonic, blood-thirsty forces that are now in full attack mode on every plane of existence relevant to this planet. Our world is in jeopardy physically and our food, water and air are all being destroyed along with every other species that depends upon a clean, God-given, organic environment in which to flourish and prosper.

To allow these forces of darkness to gain full control means the end of evolutionary life on this planet as we’ve always know it. It ain’t about to happen but it’s going to take a lot of blood, sweat and tears and endless courage, self-sacrifice and will-power to regain what’s been stolen from us by stealth and deception.

The native tribes of North America always planned ahead for at least 7 generations but from my perspective, given the state of the world today, we plainly don’t have seven generations left if we don’t begin to take the Zionist bull by the horns and put it back in the corral and lock the gate. 

Mark Dankof, from what he’s told us in his superlative article, has exhausted his options after years of being in the front lines. It’s a daunting place to be given all the underhanded tactics that the lunatics pull. Maybe it’s time for a sabbatical and a return to Spirit. There’s no doubt that Mark has put in his time and deserves to take a break and recharge his batteries if he feels the need to do so. 

We all get overloaded at times and with the increase in madness that we’re witnessing everywhere it’s only that much more challenging to keep returning to the trenches day after day after day. I know that Mark will be with us and supportive of those who will step up to bat while he’s away.


Mark Dankoff: I have been receiving a lot of mail from folks asking why I’ve taken a mild leave of absence from broadcasting and writing op-ed pieces for The Ugly Truth.  I will appear from time to time, but on a more limited basis, both with The Ugly Truth and Press TV.  I’ve been reassessing what good I’m actually doing, given the seemingly inexorable and disastrous direction the American Empire has embarked upon, and what seems like the absolute passivity and indifference of the American public to their own fate in all of this, not to mention the world.  In more recent times, I’ve been working on theological articles while preparing to resume my thesis for my last degree along with some theological German study.  I’m also job hunting to supplement my income as I assess the future.  The bottom line is this:  The title of this piece tells you what I’ve concluded about the country and the American people.  It isn’t a happy endgame.  What appears below are my latest thoughts at the present time.

As he was preparing to leave office in 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned that “America must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence…by the military-industrial complex.” Borrowing the title from the Frank Capra Defense Department propaganda films of World War II, documentary film maker Eugene Jarecki chronicled the Eisenhower warning in Why We Fight, a production that would win the Grand Jury Prize at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival.
I vaguely remember Eisenhower.  What I didn’t know as a little boy in the summer of 1960 when my family piled into my Dad’s new white Plymouth Station Wagon to depart Alexandria, Virginia for McClellan Air Force Base in Sacramento, was the fact that Dad was working for the Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC), the intelligence organization created by Eisenhower to work with the CIA and the AEC in monitoring Soviet nuclear tests, explosions, and missile sites around the world.  
I did not know that my father was acquainted with Eisenhower, Curtis LeMay, Paul Tibbets of the Enola Gay, and many other storied names of the Second World War and the Cold War that followed.  I would learn a number of things about Dad in the decades that followed.  There are many other things I never learned, even as he was losing both coherence and consciousness in the final days of his life in San Antonio in May of 2009.  Allen Dulles was correct.  There are some things that remain secret “from inception to eternity.” 

Left: Colonel Karl E. Dankof, USAF, during the Vietnam War.

In 1961, as a denizen of kindergarten at the Arthur S. Dudley Elementary School on an American Air Force reservation in Sacramento, I also had no idea that my father would also become acquainted with President Kennedy.  All I knew was that Kennedy was the most handsome and dynamic man I’d ever seen on TV, with the most beautiful wife to match.  With Kennedy in office, watching Arnold Palmer on TV winning the British Open, making many trips to San Francisco’s Candlestick Park to see Willie Mays in his prime, and trekking to old Kezar Stadium to watch the football 49ers, my idyllic childhood on the West Coast was wedded to an America filled with hope, youth, and limitless future. 
Mythology and visual images seemed to correspond with reality. The realities of what Seymour Hersh would reveal in his 1996 chronicle of the Kennedy years entitled “The Dark Side of Camelot,” did not correspond to my universe as a kid in the America of the early 1960s.

Bob Greene of the Chicago Tribune would observe in 1984 that there was a day in Dallas, Texas that would “divide the hemispheres of our lives” for those old enough to remember.  When Jack Kennedy was gunned down in Dealey Plaza on November 22nd, 1963, I was serving a one year sentence in a 3rd grade class at Floyd Elementary School in Montgomery, Alabama during my Dad’s stint at the Air War College at Maxwell Air Force Base.  
On that fateful Friday afternoon, American Mythology was slain with high powered rifle bullets coming from multiple guns and locations.  
The visual images of horror emanating from Texas became a precursor of tragedies future.  Hope, youth, and limitless future were buried in Arlington National Cemetery.  Despair, the ravages of time and aging, and a future lost in the long-departed past, became the defining elements of the second hemisphere of life in ongoing attempts to recover the unrecoverable in time and space.  Elisabeth Kubler-Ross would later teach me that denial is the first stage in the process of experiencing death.

The Day Before The End: The Kennedys in San Antonio on November 21, 1963.

I knew there was something wrong with the official story on the Kennedy death from the outset.  I had witnessed the Jack Ruby, a. k. a. Jack Rubenstein, slaying of Lee Harvey Oswald on live TV in my parents’ living room in Alabama.  What I did not know was the magnitude of the significance of what I’d seen.  What I did know half a century ago was that the idyllic days of my earlier childhood were as dead as the 35th President of the United States.  I would end up spending decades reading thousands of pages and talking to people who claimed to know something.  One of them was a private chat in May of 2001 with the retired Kennedy autopsy photographer and X-Ray technician then living in secluded retirement in Norristown, Pennsylvania.
Ironically enough, it was right after 9-11 that Michael Collins Piper would tie together many of the loose ends of my own research on Dealey Plaza for me.  The significance of Final Judgment was not simply the best and presumably last word on the ultimate players in the events of Dallas, but the way in which the demise of Jack Kennedy in my childhood became a pivotal event in understanding the process of the demythologization of American history and foreign policy in my critical re-examination of what had preceded it and what would follow.  Piper’s magnum opus would years later join my own presentation on the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor for the 2013 National Conference of the American Free Press in Austin, and my discussion of 9-11 for Kourosh Ziabari and the Fars News Agency of Iran, as prime exhibits in understanding the real Directors of the American Empire, their endgame, and the corresponding death of the Old American Republic, the Constitution of the United States, and any true sense of what the national purpose and destiny of a free American people should really be.
Left: Mark Dankof and Michael Collins Piper of the American Free Press in the Nation’s Capitol: November 2011

My personal odyssey in all of this began in the fall of 1963 as a child.  It would accelerate at the speed of light after September 11th, 2001.  In these last dozen years, I’ve put my completion of my last graduate degree on hold, and my own career and economic prospects at extreme risk, by joining people like Piper, Mark Glenn, Merlin Miller, Adrian Krieg, Philip Giraldi, Paul Craig Roberts, Tony Cartalucci, and Pepe Escobar in what is known today as Alternative Media.  My stints at the Republic Broadcasting Network and the American Free Press have been augmented in recent years by a working relationship with Press TV/Iran, and in more recent times by some brief segments with Voice of Russia.
And to what ultimate end or purpose?  For if the truth be known, if I could now do one film documentary of my own under the direction of film producer Eugene Jarecki, it would be entitled“Why We’re Finished.”  For this is precisely what I have come to believe after the passage of all these many years.

My conclusion is based on what should be inherently obvious.  The United States Government, its National Security Establishment, and its Corporate News Media are in the service of a political elite devoted to a New World Order under the control of International Bankers, Globalists, and Zionists. 
The result is an overextended Empire militarily and economically.  We are awash in a national debt of $17.6 trillion and counting, even as the estimated $5-7 trillion that will be borrowed and spent on the ill-fated and falsely premised Iraq and Afghanistan expeditions continues to mount, while deliberately manufactured reasons to intervene militarily in Syria, Iraq, and Ukraine are bundled in packaged lies by CNN and Fox News for the consumption of the brain dead on a nightly basis. Right: Pat Buchanan and Mark Dankof: “Suicide of a Superpower” meets “Why We’re Finished.

It is obvious that Israel is the driving forcebehind these policies, even as its domestic American lobby continues its ownership of the American government.  The published annual figures of the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (WRMEA) tell the tale of the tape.

Concurrently, the fiat money policies of the Federal Reserve Board continue apace, even as the manufacturing sector of the American economy continues to be exported abroad.  Fractional Reserve Banking is the ongoing order of the day for a fraudulent and evil financial system, along with credit-default swaps and derivatives. The corrosive metastasis of the social and moral agenda of theFrankfurt School’s Institute of Social Research in the United States in the last 50 years seems beyond repair.  I agree with Pat Buchanan that the Western World generally and the United States specifically, will be dead by 2025.
The cancer is terminal.  Stage 5 has arrived.  There is no political solution that people like me can turn to for hope in another day, another time yet future.  
The folks who control the money supply have purchased our Government, our Media, and our Educational Institutions.  

An American Police State has come of age since September 11th, 2001, with the advance of the USA Patriot Acts, the Military Commissions Act of 2006, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the warrantless surveillance of the National Security Agency (NSA), and the advent of a militarized domestic police force in our major cities and communities commensurate with the termination of Posse Comitatus laws which once prevented the Armed Forces and Federal Government of the United States from usurping the powers lawfully designated to the states and their localities.  
It is a fatal mistake with recent developments in Ferguson, Missouri to assume that the sole and primary targets of this Police State are either African Americans or Americans of Islamic faith.
The Missouri Information Action Report (MIAC) of 2008 reveals a partnership between the Israelified Department of Homeland Security, the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai Brith (ADL), the Southern Poverty Law Center, and the police departments of the American states and cities to target white males who oppose the New World Order, abortion, and gay marriage while voting for candidates like Ron Paul and Pat Buchanan, as potential militia members and terrorists.

This message from Hananiah is contradicted by Jeremiah (Jeremiah 28).

Dr. Adrian Krieg and Dr. Philip Giraldi meet at the critical intersection point:  Fascism has arrived in America.  Sinclair Lewis has proven prophetic in his prediction that it would be “wrapped in the Flag and carrying the Cross.”   
This is the true role of the hireling John Hagee of San Antonio’s Cornerstone Church and his Christians United for Israel (CUFI) organization, to sell genocidal wars with a racially supremacist and globalist agenda wrapped in the American Flag and the Christian Cross.  The diabolical genius of this is that neither the true national American interest or the Kingdom of God in Christ has a thing to do with Fiat Money, Fractional Reserve Banking, or the Talmudic Racial Supremacist Land Thievery of Netanyahu and Company.  
But the Giraldi piece on Fascism in America this week shows how the pro-Zionist Christian Right in the United States provides much of the glue which holds this burgeoning tragedy in perpetual place, even as a national judgment upon this country by the Biblical God is unfolding.  The Chris Kyles of The Realm are the triggermen.  The Marquis J. McCantses of The Realm are the benevolent and unsuspecting cannon fodder.

Right: The American Sniper Receives the “Grateful Nation” award from the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA). Jewish Air Force Chief of Staff Norman Schwartz presenting. But what “Grateful Nation” is referenced at this event?
The final straws would seem to be the American, Israeli, and EU sponsored coup in Kiev, Ukraine, and the Neo-Conservative cry for an American military intervention in Syria and Iraq to combat an ISIS organization which is a specific creation of the United States, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and the GCC states for just this very purpose.
In the case of Ukraine, the taped conversation of American Undersecretary of State, Victoria Nuland(the wife of Neo-Conservative/Zionist zealot Robert Kagan), and the American Ambassador to the Ukraine, reveals the plot which overthrew that country’s legitimately elected government as part of the ongoing and irresponsible encirclement policy of Putin’s Russia by NATO. 
This policy is not merely the official breaking of the promises made by Republican Presidents to Gorbachev and Yeltsin that the United States would not recruit former Eastern Bloc countries for NATO membership or as hosts of NATO military hardware moved closer to Russian borders.  
It has recklessly placed the United States in the position of being in a potential military showdown with a nuclear power, even as the American government supports an illegitimate government in Kiev and Ukraine peppered with Dual Israeli Citizen Oligarchs and EU-Affiliated Bankers.  The atrocities against Russian ethnics in Eastern Ukraine culminating in the fiery murders which resulted from theOdessa Trade Union torching at the hands of thugs controlled by the installed government, is now matched by the shootdown of Malaysian Airlines MH17.  
The American government and media began weaving and spinning the myth that Russia and the pro-Russian rebels of Eastern Ukraine were responsible for this atrocity.  It proved as false as the phony accusation that Assad of Syria had used nerve gas against his opponents in Ghouta.  The evidence there pointed once more in the opposite direction.

The Odessa Trade Union Fire: The Work of the Latest American-Installed “Government.”.

In the case of the manufactured hysteria over the operations of ISIS in Syria and Iraq, Tony Cartalucci of Land Destroyer lays out the ultimate endgame of the United States and Israel:  
the removal of President Assad of Syria as a precursor to a preemptive war with Iran to satisfy both Netanyahu and the House of Saud in Saudi Arabia.  
In Iraq, the demise of the al-Maliki regime with one more amenable to an ongoing American military presence in that country in perpetuity, has already been achieved.

Which brings me back to the foundational premise of this article entitled “Why We’re Finished”:  
The American Empire, wedded to Zionism and a World Government empowered by Globalist Banking and Multinational Corporations, is the chief enabler of evil on this planet.  It is the chief adversary of peace abroad, even as it serves as the chief adversary of its own people.  
The American Military is the armed Janissary force of this Beast.  It exists solely for this purpose, and is as much a chief threat to the Bill of Rights of the Constitution of the United States as it is to the people of Russia, Ukraine, Syria, Iran, Palestine, and elsewhere.  
The American National Security State has used Islamophobia and Russophobia to justify the targeting of its own citizens, especially political dissidents.  
The American Church has maintained its 501c3 tax status by wrapping these policies in the Flag and carrying them with the Cross.  
The American People are worried about the Ebola virus and AIDS, when they have been terminally infected with the Gadarene Swine Fallacy.  The cliff is closer than most can possibly imagine.

Sarah Palin and American Fascism: She forgot the Star of Rothschild on her office desk.

This is Why We’re Finished.  For those who have recently inquired, I’m presently reassessing how and when I continue in broadcasting, news analysis, and op-ed commentary.  If I do at all.  At the present time, I question my own effectiveness in the environment in which I operate, for a constituency whose vibrancy is a relic of a long forgotten past in the midst of a people with terminal amnesia and calcified indifference.
For now, I’m working on theological presentations for the remnant church, and looking at finishing my thesis on Christian Zionism for my last degree while sustaining a theological German exam in the next year.  
The Old American Republic is dead.  
The American Empire wants to destroy all of us who believe in Republic, not in Empire.  I see no reason to believe the American public has the insight and the guts to stand up to this onslaught.  
We Are Truly Finished.
John on Patmos: Exiled Because of Resistance to the Emperor Worship Cultus of Domitian
(A. D. 81-96).

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 the Blog!

George Galloway Assaulted; Stephen Harper Nominated for Nobel Prize


By Richard Edmondson

“What we are facing in Iraq now with ISIL is a greater and deeper threat to our security than we have known before.”

Those words were spoken by British Prime Minister David Cameron in a Downing Street news conference on Friday.

As it so happened, on that very same day a member of the British Parliament was indeed attacked on a London street–though not by a member of ISIL. MP George Galloway was assaulted and punched repeatedly by what appears to have been a lunatic Zionist.

“George was posing for pictures with people and this guy just attacked him, leapt on him and started punching him and calling him Hitler,” according to a spokesman for Galloway. “It appears to be connected with his (Galloway’s) comments about Israel because the guy was shouting about the Holocaust.”

Coincidentally, also on Friday, B’nai Brith of Canada announced that it is nominating Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper for the Nobel Peace Prize.

“In accordance with the rules of the Nobel Foundation it gives me great pleasure to nominate in my capacity as Professor of Modern Israel Studies at Canada Christian College, Prime Minister Stephen Harper for the Nobel Peace Prize in honour of the outstanding moral leadership he has demonstrated,” said Frank Dimant, CEO of B’nai Brith Canada.

The nomination is apparently legally valid and officially recognized; according to the Nobel Prize website, “qualified nominators” can include “university rectors; professors of social sciences, history, philosophy, law and theology; directors of peace research institutes and foreign policy institutes.”

This of course doesn’t mean Harper will in fact be awarded the prize, but given some of the Nobel Committee’s previous choices, the possibility cannot be written off.

The assault and battery upon George Galloway.

The nomination of Stephen Harper for the Nobel prize.

Two events, taking place on different continents, but both occurring in the same 24-hour news cycle, and both sharing a common denominator: Israel.

Galloway has long been a critic of Israel and a supporter of Palestinian rights. Early in the month of August, as the Jewish state was in the middle of its attack upon Gaza and with the Palestinian death toll closing in on the 2000 figure, Galloway gave a speech in which he declared his home district, Bradford, to be an “Israel-free zone.”

One may understand Galloway’s strong feelings on the matter. The images coming out of Gaza at the time he gave the speech were horrific. The declaration of an “Israel-free zone” was of course nothing more than symbolic. It had nothing of a legal, binding nature to it. But apparently for the MP’s assailant, this was beside the point.

Police have charged Neil Masterson, 39, with one count of “religiously-aggravated assault,” and one count of common assault. (It seems that in addition to Galloway, a bystander in the crowd who attempted to come to the 60-year-old parliament member’s defense was also attacked.)

On the brutal occupation of Palestine, Harper is Galloway’s antithesis. Harper has been one of the most ardent and devoted supporters of Israel out of all Western leaders, and that’s saying a lot. During the Gaza bloodshed, the Canadian Prime Minister issued a public statement that included the following:

The indiscriminate rocket attacks from Gaza on Israel are terrorist acts, for which there is no justification. It is evident that Hamas is deliberately using human shields to further terror in the region.

Failure by the international community to condemn these reprehensible actions would encourage these terrorists to continue their appalling actions. Canada calls on its allies and partners to recognize that these terrorist acts are unacceptable and that solidarity with Israel is the best way of stopping the conflict.

Canada is unequivocally behind Israel. We support its right to defend itself, by itself, against these terror attacks, and urge Hamas to immediately cease their indiscriminate attacks on innocent Israeli civilians.

Harper seems to have it backwards. Israel’s Operation Protective Edge has killed at least 2100 Palestinians, the overwhelming majority of them civilians, including more than 400 children. Israeli fatalities, on the other hand, totaled 70, 64 of whom were soldiers.

One man opposed this deadly Israeli assault on Gaza…while the other called for “solidarity with Israel.” The first man was assaulted and beaten for his views; the second nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.

I have said before that we live in a topsy-turvy world, and the reason for this is obvious: Jewish power. In this I include the ability of Jewish lobbies to influence elected governments–even to the point of acting against their own national interests–as well as the power of Jewish media owners to shape and determine the parameters of “acceptable” public discourse. As someone once articulated it, this is the power not so much to control what people think as what they think about.

Or to put it another way: Jewish power has inflicted its own peculiar form of insanity upon the world.

In announcing his nomination of Harper for the Nobel prize, Dimant praised the Canadian prime minister for his “moral clarity.”

“Moral clarity has been lost across much of the world, with terror, hatred and antisemitism filling the void,” Dimant said. “Throughout, there has been one leader which has demonstrated international leadership and a clear understanding of the differences between those who would seek to do evil, and their victims. More than any other individual, he has consistently spoken out with resolve regarding the safety of people under threat — such as opposing Russian aggression and annexation of Ukrainian territory — and has worked to ensure that other world leaders truly understand threat of Islamic terrorism facing us today.”

“Moral clarity” apparently means condoning the flattening of entire neighborhoods, the bombing of schools, hospitals, and ambulances, and the killing of children as they play soccer on a beach. “Moral clarity,”  in other words, means you have succumbed to the insanity. And just like the Canadian prime minister, the man charged with assaulting Galloway, too, is suffering evidently from an acute case of “moral clarity” as well. But he is not alone. Not by a long shot. Galloway’s comments calling for an “Israel-free zone” seem to have sparked a widespread outbreak of “moral clarity” throughout the entire UK.

“He has been receiving a huge amount of death threats and hate mail since saying this,” said the MP’s spokesman.

Political leaders like Cameron seem inordinately preoccupied these days with the possibility of terror attacks from ISIL, but for some reason they choose not to perceive the very real danger of Zionist terror.

Be that as it may, a fair question–for those of us not burdened, at any rate, with undue excesses of “moral clarity”–would be this: of the two risks, which poses the greater threat to public safety?

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