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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I POST A LOT ABOUT GENOCIDE AND COLONIZATION IN OTHER AREAS, BUT NEED TO FOCUS MORE ON CANADA’S SORDID HISTORY. HERE’S A START

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 hiddennolonger.com 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.

KevinAnnett.com (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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EXCERPTS FROM A DETAILED 2 PART ARTICLE, “WAHHABIS, THE BROTHERHOOD AND THE EMPIRE: SYRIA AND THE LIMITS OF POLITICAL ISLAM”

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.

Photo

*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!

AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL: WHY WE’RE FINISHED

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. 
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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.
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AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL: WHY WE’RE FINISHED BY MARK DANKOF

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.

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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.
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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.  
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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.
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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.
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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.
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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.

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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. 
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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.
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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.
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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.
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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.  
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The folks who control the money supply have purchased our Government, our Media, and our Educational Institutions.  

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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.
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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.”   
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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.  
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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.

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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?
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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.
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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. 
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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.  
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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.  
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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.
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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.  
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The American National Security State has used Islamophobia and Russophobia to justify the targeting of its own citizens, especially political dissidents.  
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The American Church has maintained its 501c3 tax status by wrapping these policies in the Flag and carrying them with the Cross.  
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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.
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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.
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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.  
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The Old American Republic is dead.  
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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.  
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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

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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?

“…WHATEVER THE LABEL, THEY PROCEED TO THE SAME ABUSES: RAPE, TORTURE, BEHEADINGS, CRUCIFIXIONS”

*graphic by Tim Anderson
Lilly Martin, an American living for the past two decades in Syria, writes on her Facebook page, Syria is my Home:
It is now the 1 year anniversary of the massacre at Ballouta, Syria. This is a small village 1 hour drive from Latakia. On that fateful night, as the unarmed civilians lay sleeping in their own homes, the Free Syrian Army came in the night and slaughtered 220 persons. Fathers, Mothers, Grandparents and children. Whole families and extended families executed. One pregnant woman was cut open, and the fetus left hanging in a tree.

Some did manage to escape and told horrific stories. 100 children, with several females were kidnapped that night and taken to Selma, which is a village on the border with Turkey. They were kept captive under ground where they were tortured. One little boy had his eyes gouged out. Another child was shot through the head for fun, by the FSA.

However, 9 months later, 44 of the children were released. However, the other 50 are still captive, now more than one year underground without sunlight.

The Free Syrian Army no longer exists. They have all pledged allegiance to ISIS. Will we ever see those children again? Please pray for Ballouta, and all Syrians who have been raped, maimed, made homeless, and killed by the Free Syrian Army and ISIS.
Terrorist groups come with many names, but in the end they are all the same. Radical Islam must be stopped. It is a cancer spreading and will infect and kill everywhere. 

This cancer was nurtured and fed by President Obama, Prime Minister David Cameron, Pres. Hollande, Pres. Erdogan, King Abdullah and the Prince of Qatar. These are the leaders who formed an EVIL GROUP called the London 11 group. The have funded and supported their baby: ISIS. However, their baby is now up and walking and coming to bite the hand that feeds it.”


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“Four citizens were wounded, among them three university students, and material damage was inflicted to four cars due to attacks with mortar rounds that terrorists launched on Bassel al-Assad university campus and several neighborhoods in Damascus.
A source at Damascus Police Command told SANA that a shell fell near Unit 15 in Bassel al-Assad university campus, wounding three students, while another shell hit the wall of a building in al-Shaghour neighborhood, wounding a citizen and causing damage to four cars.
A shell hit a building under construction in Kafrssouseh, causing no casualties, according to the source.
The source added that four shells fell in Tishreen Park and near al-Rabweh Park, near al-Toushka restaurant and in al-Mazzeh neighborhood, causing material damage.
Terrorists also fired a number of mortar rounds on Harasta suburb in Damascus Countryside, causing material damage and no injuries or casualties.”
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netanyahu-mercenary-hospital
“The “armed elements” in Syria consist almost exclusively of jihadist groups, most notably ISIS and al-Nusra. ISIS was trained by the United States and al-Nusra was armed by the CIA, Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
On Wednesday ISIS and al-Nusra took control of the Quneitra crossing point at the demarcation line on the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.
DEBKAfile, an Israeli intelligence asset, reports the ISIS and al-Nusra effort to wrest control of the border area away from the Syrian army was assisted by by Israel, Jordan and the United States:

Israel acted as a member, along with the US and Jordan, of a support system for rebel groups [ISIS, al-Nusra] fighting in southern Syria. Their efforts are coordinated through a war-room which the Pentagon established last year near Amman. The US, Jordanian and Israeli officers manning the facility determine in consultation which rebel factions are provided with reinforcements from the special training camps run for Syrian rebels in Jordan, and which will receive arms.

In December, it was reported by The National that a secret command center in Jordan, staffed by western and Arab military officials, provides support to jihadist groups fighting on Syria’s southern front. The intelligence center “channels vehicles, sniper rifles, mortars, heavy machine guns, small arms and ammunition to Free Syrian Army units.”
Large numbers of fighters from the Free Syrian Army have defected to al-Nusra over the last year. “Fighters are heading to al-Nusra because of its Islamic doctrine, sincerity, good funding and advanced weapons,” Abu Islam of the FSA’s al-Tawhid brigade in Aleppo told The Guardian in May, 2013.
In June, al-Nusra and ISIS joined forces.
The same month Aaron Klein of WorldNetDaily reported U.S. instructors had trained members of ISIS in the Jordanian town of Safawi in the country’s northern desert region.
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[VIDEO]
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Interview with Zafar Bangash on ISIS:
Aug 25, 2014, The Taylor Report
Click here to listen.
“ISIS is a scam, just like the Syrian “chemical weapons” of last year. The same person is responsible for both of these: Saudi Prince Bandar Bin Sultan.
The purpose is the same as last year’s WMD hoax: to clear a path for U.S. entry into Syria.
Zafar Bangash explains how the U.S., Turkey, and Gulf monarchs have nurtured ISIS from the very beginning as their contra force against Syria.”
Crescent International website
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*excerpts
“When I was in Libya during the “Western”attack, I was able to view a report of the foreign intelligence services. It stated that, on February 4, 2011 in Cairo, NATO organized a meeting to launch the “Arab Spring” in Libya and Syria. According to this document, the meeting was chaired by John McCain. The report detailed the list of Libyan participants, whose delegation was led by the No. 2 man of the government of the day, Mahmoud Jibril, who abruptly switched sides at the entrance of the meeting to become the opposition leader in exile. I remember that, among the French delegates present, the report quoted Bernard-Henry Lévy, although officially he had never exercised functions within the French government. Many other personalities attended the symposium, including a large delegation of Syrians living abroad.
Emerging from the meeting, the mysterious Syrian Revolution 2011 Facebook account called for demonstrations outside the People’s Council (National Assembly) in Damascus on February 11. Although this Facebook account at the time claimed to have more than 40,000 followers, only a dozen people responded to its call before the flashes of photographers and hundreds of police. The demonstration dispersed peacefully and clashes only began more than a month later in Deraa.
…On February 22nd, John McCain was in Lebanon. He met members of the Future Movement (the party of Saad Hariri) whom he charged to oversee the transfer of arms to Syria around the MP Okab Sakr [4]. Then, leaving Beirut, he inspected the Syrian border and the selected villages including Ersal, which were used as a basis to back mercenaries in the war to come.
The meetings chaired by John McCain were clearly the trigger point for a long-prepared Washington plan; the plan that would have the UK and France attack Libya and Syria simultaneously, following the doctrine of “leadership from behind” and the annex of the Treaty of Lancaster House of November 2010.
In May 2013, Senator John McCain made his way illegally to near Idleb in Syria via Turkey to meet with leaders of the “armed opposition”. His trip was not made public until his return to Washington. [6]
This movement was organized by the Syrian Emergency Task Force, which, contrary to its title, is a Zionist Organization led by a Palestinian employee of AIPAC [7]
In photographs released at that time, one noticed the presence of Mohammad Nour, a spokesman for the Northern Storm Brigade (of the Al-Nosra Front, that is to say, al-Qaeda in Syria), who kidnapped and held 11 Lebanese Shiite pilgrims in Azaz. [8] Asked about his proximity to al-Qaeda kidnappers, the Senator claimed not to know Mohammad Nour who would have invited himself into this photo.
…Let’s suppose that Senator McCain had told the truth and that he was abused by Mohammad Nour. The object of his illegal trip to Syria was to meet the chiefs of staff of the Free Syrian Army. According to him, the organization was composed “exclusively of Syrians” fighting for “their freedom” against the “Alouite dictatorship” (sic). The tour organizers published this photograph to attest to the meeting.
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John McCain and the heads of the Free Syrian Army. In the left foreground, Ibrahim al-Badri, with which the Senator is talking. Next, Brigadier General Salim Idris (with glasses).
If we can see Brigadier General Idriss Salem, head of the Free Syrian Army, one can also see Ibrahim al-Badri (foreground on the left) with whom the senator is talking. Back from the surprise trip, John McCain claimed that all those responsible for the Free Syrian Army were “moderates who can be trusted” (sic).
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However, since October 4, 2011, Ibrahim al-Badri (also known as Abu Du’a) was on the list of the five terrorists most wanted by the United States (Rewards for Justice). A premium of up to $ 10 million was offered to anyone who would assist in his capture. [9] The next day, October 5, 2011, Ibrahim al-Badri was included in the list of the Sanctions Committee of the UN as a member of Al Qaeda. [10]
In addition, a month before receiving Senator McCain, Ibrahim al-Badri, known under his nom de guerre as Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, created the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ÉIIL) – all the while still belonging to the staff of the very “moderate” Free Syrian Army.

I have always said that there was no difference on the ground between the Free Syrian Army, Al-Nosra Front, the Islamic Emirate etc … All these organizations are composed of the same individuals who continuously change flag. When they pose as the Free Syrian Army, they fly the flag of French colonization and speak only of overthrowing the “dog Bashar.” When they say they belong to Al-Nosra Front, they carry the flag of al Qaeda and declare their intention to spread Islam in the world. Finally when they say they are the Islamic Emirate, they brandish the flag of the Caliphate and announce that they will clean the area of all infidels. But whatever the label, they proceed to the same abuses: rape, torture, beheadings, crucifixions.
…In no country in the world, regardless of their political system, would one accept that the opposition leader be in direct contact, and publicly friendly, with a very dangerous wanted terrorist.
…The list of interventions by John McCain on behalf of the State Department is impressive. He participated in all the color revolutions of the last twenty years.
To take only a few examples, ever in the name of “democracy”, he prepared the failed coup against constitutional president Hugo Chávez in Venezuela, [13] the overthrow of constitutionally elected president Jean-Bertrand Aristide in Haiti [14], the attempt to overthrow the constitutional President Mwai Kibaki in Kenya [15] and, more recently, the ousting of the constitutional president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych.
In any state in the world, when a citizen takes initiative to topple the regime of another State, he may be appreciated if successful and the new regime proves an ally, but he will be severely condemned when his initiatives have negative consequences for his own country. Now, Senator McCain never was harassed because of his anti-democratic actions in states where it has failed and who have turned against Washington. In Venezuela, for example. That is because, for the United States, John McCain is not a traitor, but an agent.
And an agent that has the best coverage imaginable: he is the official opponent of Barack Obama. As such, he can travel anywhere in the world (he is the most traveled US senator) and meet whoever he wants without fear. If his interlocutors approve Washington policy, he promised them to continue it, if they fight it, he hands over the responsibility to President Obama.
…In 2003, France’s opposition was not enough to offset the influence of the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq. The United States attacked the country again and this time overthrew President Hussein. Of course, John McCain was a major contributor to the Committee.  After handing to a private company the care of plundering the country for a year [17], they tried to partition Iraq into three separate states, but had to give it up due to the resistance of the population. They tried again in 2007, around the Biden-Brownback resolution, but again failed. [18] Hence the current strategy that attempts to achieve this by means of a non-state actor: the Islamic Emirate.
The operation was planned well in advance, even before the meeting between John McCain and Ibrahim al-Badri. For example, internal correspondence from the Qatari Ministry of Foreign Affairs, published by my friends James and Joanne Moriarty [19], shows that 5,000 jihadis were trained at the expense of Qatar in NATO’s Libya in 2012, and 2,5 million dollars was paid at the same time to the future Caliph.
In January of 2014, the Congress of the United States held a secret meeting at which it voted, in violation of international law, to approve funding for the Al-Nosra Front (Al-Qaeda) and the Islamic emirate in Iraq and the Levant until September 2014. [20]
The Islamic Emirate represents a new step in the world of mercenaries. Unlike jihadi groups who fought in Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Chechnya around Osama bin Laden, it does not constitute a residual force but actually an army in itself. Unlike previous groups in Iraq, Libya and Syria, around Prince Bandar bin Sultan, they have sophisticated communication services at their disposal for recruitment and civilian officials trained in large western schools capable of instantly taking over the administration of a territory.
…according to General William Mayville, director of operations at the headquarters, “These bombings are unlikely to affect the overall capacity of the Islamic Emirate and its activities in other areas of Iraq or Syria “. [24] Obviously, they are not meant to destroy the jihadist army, but only to ensure that each player does not overlap the territory that has been assigned. Moreover, for the moment, they are symbolic and have destroyed only a handful of vehicles. It was ultimately the intervention of the Kurds of the Turkish and Syrian Kurdish PKK which halted the progress of the Islamic Emirate and opened a corridor to allow civilians to escape the massacre.”
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“A letter sent by a prominent Dutch Professor to Russian president Vladimir Putin has attracted much media attention in Europe.  The letter was written by Professor Cees Hamelink and signed by dozens of Dutch intellectuals and professors. Below is the letter in its entirety.
‘Dear Mr. President Putin,
Please accept our apologies on behalf of a great many people here in the Netherlands for our Government and our Media. The facts concerning MH17 are twisted to defame you and your country.
We are powerless onlookers, as we witness how the Western Nations, led by the United States, accuse Russia of crimes they commit themselves more than anybody else. We reject the double standards that are used for Russia and the West. In our societies, sufficient evidence is required for a conviction. The way you and your Nation are convicted for ‘crimes’ without evidence, is ruthless and despicable.
You have saved us from a conflict in Syria that could have escalated into a World War. The mass killing of innocent Syrian civilians through gassing by ‘Al-­‐Qaeda’ terrorists, trained and armed by the US and paid for by Saudi Arabia, was blamed on Assad. In doing so, the West hoped public opinion would turn against Assad, paving the way for an attack on Syria.
Not long after this, Western forces have built up, trained and armed an ‘opposition’ in the Ukraine, to prepare a coup against the legitimate Government in Kiev. The putschists taking over were quickly recognized by Western Governments. They were provided with loans from our tax money to prop their new Government up.
The people of the Crimea did not agree with this and showed this with peaceful demonstrations.
Anonymous snipers and violence by Ukrainian troops turned these demonstrations into demands for independence from Kiev. Whether you support these separatist movements is immaterial, considering the blatant Imperialism of the West.
Russia is wrongly accused, without evidence or investigation, of delivering the weapons systems that allegedly brought down MH17. For this reason Western Governments claim they have a right to economically pressure Russia.
We, awake citizens of the West, who see the lies and machinations of our Governments, wish to offer you our apologies for what is done in our name.

It’s unfortunately true, that our media have lost all independence and are just mouthpieces for the Powers that Be. Because of this, Western people tend to have a warped view of reality and are unable to hold their politicians to account.

Our hopes are focused on your wisdom. We want Peace. We see that Western Governments do not serve the people but are working towards a New World Order. The destruction of sovereign nations and the killing of millions of innocent people is, seemingly, a price worth paying for them, to achieve this goal.
We, the people of the Netherlands, want Peace and Justice, also for and with Russia.

We hope to make clear that the Dutch Government speaks for itself only. We pray our efforts will help to diffuse the rising tensions between our Nations.

Sincerely,
Professor Cees Hamelink’”
***
“Salafis are the most violent, crazed fundamentalist Muslims. For example, both ISIS and Al Qaeda are Salafis.
ISIS and other salafi terrorists represent a very small percentage of Muslims. PBS estimates Salafi jihadists constitute less than 0.5 percent of the world’s 1.9 billion Muslims (i.e., less than 10 million).
As we’ve been warning for more than a year – long before the old crazies re-branded as “ISIS”  – Saudi Arabia, Qatar and other American allies have been supporting the crazed extremists who are persecuting Christians.
Indeed, the majority of the world’s Salafis are from Qatar, UAE and Saudi Arabia. Salafis make up:
  • 46.87% of Qatar
  • 44.8% of the United Arab Emirates
  • 22.9% of Saudis
  • 5.7% of Bahrainis
  • 2.17% of Kuwaitis
These are the closest allies of the U.S. in the Middle East. In other words, we are backing the most violent, extremist Muslims in the world …”
***
“U.S. foreign policy is schizophrenic.
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff says we need to attack the Sunni militants in Syria.
The deputy national security adviser to President Obama says we should go after ISIS in Syria.
Okay …
But the U.S. and our closest allies have long supported Sunni militants.
And the U.S. and our closest allies have been arming and training Islamic jihadists in Syria for years. And see thisthisthis and this.
As Michael Shank – Adjunct Faculty and Board Member at George Mason University’s School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, and director of foreign policy at the Friends Committee on National Legislation – warned a year ago:
‘The Senate and House Intelligence committees’ about-face decision last week to arm the rebels in Syria is dangerous and disconcerting. The weapons will assuredly end up in the wrong hands and will only escalate the slaughter in Syria. Regardless of the vetting procedures in place, the sheer factionalized nature of the opposition guarantees that the arms will end up in some unsavory hands. The same militant fighters who have committed gross atrocities are among the best-positioned of the rebel groups to seize the weapons that the United States sends to Syria.
When you lift the curtain on the armed groups with the most formidable military presence on the ground in Syria, you find the Al Nusra Front and Al Farough Brigades. Both groups are closely aligned with Al Qaeda and have directly perpetrated barbaric atrocities. The Al Nusra Front has been charged with beheadings of civilians, while a commander from the Al Farough Brigades reportedly ate the heart of a pro-Assad soldier.’
Shank’s warning was ignored, and his worst fears came to pass.
And the U.S. is still financing the jihadis in Syria. For example, the government is pushing an additional $500 million in arms to the jihadis.
We are literally bombing our own weapons.
If we stop arming, funding and training terrorists, then maybe we won’t have to bomb them later.”
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!

A look at the tactics of the Palestinian Resistance after two intifadas and three wars

Palestinian militants from the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ armed wing, take part in a rally in Gaza City on August 27, 2014, following a deal hailed by Israel and the Islamist movement as ‘victory’ in the 50-day war. (Photo: AFP-Mohammed Hams)
Published Saturday, August 30, 2014
With the decline of armed struggle under the PLO and the Left, the Palestinian Resistance, in the early 1980s, was able to start a new phase that moved on from small closed groups to become an institutionalized phenomenon following to some extent a model that combined guerrilla warfare and the official structure of regular armies. This phenomenon was the result of operational diversity whose progression thereafter can be tracked and measured.
Gaza – From the first moment after the end of the second Gaza war in 2012 (Operation Pillar of Cloud), the Palestinian Resistance factions focused militarily on the qualitative and quantitative aspects. This was coupled with steps to fortify and shore up the home front.
In critical stages, a kind of parity with Israel emerged at the intelligence level, reducing the Resistance’s losses markedly. On Friday, for example, al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of Islamic Jihad, declared that 120 of its fighters had been killed throughout 50 days of fighting, including many who had died with their families in their homes when they were bombarded, that is, while not on duty.
Even at the level of psychological warfare, where success depends on applying a number of modern military techniques, al-Quds Brigades, in 2012, was able to send SMS messages to the mobile phones of 5,000 Israeli soldiers and officers in the Hebrew language. This set a new precedent for the Palestinian Resistance.
Al-Qassam Brigades (Hamas) pursued the same path in this war, but focused on advertising its rocket capacity by openly calling on the Occupation to activate its Iron Dome system at full capacity. In one instance, al-Qassam specified 9 pm as the time it would launch 10 rockets, and despite Israeli air cover, the Iron Dome system could not intercept all of the rockets, bearing in mind that al-Qassam also asked the media to cover the event.
The Resistance could not have accomplished this were it not for its mastery of the techniques of camouflage, for both its personnel and rocket platforms. This is on the one hand; on the other hand, slipping behind enemy lines was a cause for great concern among Israeli soldiers and settlers, who feared surprise Palestinian attacks. The Resistance took advantage of this to send out messages of deterrence.
Based on this, it is possible to study how the Resistance moved from a defensive role to a proactive role through 28 years of intifadas and wars.
The first and second intifadas

Despite the large gap between the arms of the Resistance and those of the Occupation, the factions became aware of the need to activate the media arm of the Resistance.

 

Outstanding feats during the course of the first intifada (1987-1993) were not clear, because the environment out of which the spark of the intifada emanated was purely popular, and not primarily linked to an organized phenomenon led by any of the national liberation movements. The intifada progressed gradually vis-à-vis resistance activity through three main stages: the first in which stone-throwing was the main weapon; a second where guerilla warfare emerged using melee weapons; and a third involving martyrdom operations.
With this kind of individual and collective action, the resistance factions, especially Hamas and Islamic Jihad, progressed into a new stage of qualitatively and quantitatively intensified military operations. Graffiti at the time was crime punishable by the occupation, and of course, the criminalization included resistance using stones, slingshots, Molotov cocktails, and melee weapons by both factions and individuals.
Despite the large gap between the arms of the Resistance and those of the Occupation, the factions became aware of the need to activate the media arm of the Resistance in parallel with their limited armed resistance at the time. Thus, masked men from the Resistance factions began spraying graffiti on walls containing messages of mobilization addressed to the Palestinian people, and messages that reinforced the psychological barrier with the enemy.
As regards the military wings, they started excelling in guerrilla warfare, hitting military targets with precision. This helped deplete the personnel of the occupation army, who were deployed in the streets and camps of the Gaza Strip.
Resistance operations were managed individually at the time. Of particular prominence were the military schools of Imad Akel (Hamas) and Mohammed Souri (al-Quds Brigades). Soon, special units for explosives and explosive belts were created, ushering in the era of martyrdom operations that were sustained throughout the first few years of the second intifada, before the Palestinian Authority dismantled the Palestinian factions’ military cells in the occupied West Bank, and before the enemy stepped up its security measures.
In the second intifada, the Resistance continued its path of military and martyrdom operations. But Operation Defensive Shield carried out by the occupation army in 2002, and the construction of the separation barrier, hindered martyrdom operations, though many sources say that the Resistance stopped such operations for undisclosed internal reasons.

[T]he Resistance excelled in operations involving raids on settlements and military bases along the border with Gaza.

 

These developments prompted the Resistance to begin building a rocket arsenal, beginning with locally-made rockets whose range did not exceed 2 to 3 km, until it reached its current capabilities as seen in the most recent conflict. In addition, the Resistance excelled in operations involving raids on settlements and military bases along the border with Gaza, up until the Israeli disengagement from Gaza in 2005. After that, the Resistance developed techniques for tunnel warfare, with tunnels dug below Israeli positions to facilitate attacks against them. There were also attempts to carry out operations by sea.
On the other hand, the occupation continued to carry out ground incursions and raids for three successive years, and was confronted by the resistance military wings with anti-tank missiles and IEDs, inflicting heavy losses in its ranks, especially as the resistance was able to destroy Israeli Merkava-type tanks. The Resistance also stockpiled large amounts of mortar shells and anti-tank missiles, and manufactured local versions of anti-tank systems like al-Banna, al-Yassin, and al-Batar, and made similar efforts to replace barrel bombs (100 kg) with smaller anti-personnel and anti-tank devices.
Operation Cast Lead
The element of surprise was the most important feature of Operation Cast Lead (2008-2009), which began with strikes against the former Gaza government’s security and police buildings. The resistance factions, which had been exhausted by successive incursions, were not well prepared to counter that aggression.
Subsequently, al-Qassam and al-Quds Brigades suffered major security and military setbacks. The political leadership’s assessment of the escalation was inaccurate, which helped the Israeli air force, the enemy’s long arm, achieve many goals and assassinate prominent political, military, and government leaders of the resistance, in addition to relatively containing the resistance’s rocket capabilities by targeting rocket platforms, tracking down and eliminating operatives behind rocket launching, and reducing the rate of rocket fire.
Furthermore, the internal Palestinian front was not in the best shape in terms of its cohesion. The occupation sought to infiltrate the Resistance and thwart its plans, especially at the level of ground operations. Israeli forces thus went deep into the west of Beit Lahia and Jabalia (north), and Tel al-Hawa in southern Gaza, without a strong response from the resistance. The Israelis also dissected Gaza into three parts, and the movement of medical services between the cities was prevented.
Nevertheless, the Resistance revealed a new card in the rocket-launching arena, with the range of its rockets dramatically growing, now hitting Ashdod, Ashkelon, and Beersheba through the use of Russian-made Grad rockets having a range of (20-40 km).
Pillar of Cloud
In the eight-day conflict dubbed Operation Pillar of Cloud, which was the shortest of the two wars, the resistance was able to catch the enemy by surprise. What also helped broker a political solution at the time was the presence of Hamas’s parent organization the Muslim Brotherhood in power in Egypt. Military supplies were also being transported underground at full speed.
Four years were thus enough for the resistance to strengthen its capabilities and upgrade the range of its rockets to 75-80 km. Moreover, the Resistance developed the list of its targets, and though the margin of error of the rockets was not relatively good, the rockets had a huge psychological impact by targeting important cities in occupied Palestine such as Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

[T]he Resistance developed the list of its targets, and… the rockets had a huge psychological impact by targeting important cities in occupied Palestine such as Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

 

All this weakened the ability of the Israeli public to tolerate hostilities. The Israeli public found itself well in range of the Resistance’s firepower, without the Iron Dome performing effectively like in the most recent war. The Resistance also showed outstanding skill in launching rockets through tunnels, which meant that the Israeli air force was unable to target anything except civilian homes.
Moreover, the resistance factions built their own communications network modeled on Hezbollah’s communications network, which allowed the resistance to conduct its battles safely, unlike during Operation Cast Lead.
What helped the resistance prevent the Israelis from carrying out a ground incursion was revealing that it had acquired Russian-made anti-tank and anti-ship missiles, in addition to both stationary and mobile launch pads of all kinds. However, it is important to note that the war started with the assassination of the deputy commander of the al-Qassam Brigades, which gave the Israelis a trump card from the beginning of the war, and allowed the Israelis to content themselves with that “achievement” without having to finish the operation.
Operation Strong Cliff (Protective Edge) (2014)
Two years later, the Resistance worked day-by-day to neutralize the impact of the Israeli Air Force, making underground tunnels a real threat to the enemy’s combat doctrine. Israeli armored vehicles became an easy target as well for the resistance’s guided missiles, and the same applies to Israeli infantry.

What characterized this war was the fact that the Resistance was able to prevent the occupation from pushing deep into Gaza.

 

From the first day and prior to the ground incursion, the Resistance worked hard to demoralize the enemy, following several operations behind enemy lines. This was the result of concerted efforts, beginning with surveillance and reconnaissance of enemy positions, and not ending with assigning elite fighters to more than one group during the same mission, as well as engaging the enemy soldiers from point blank, all suggesting that the resistance fighters had received intensive and advanced training. The operations were also documented and broadcasted after being edited, including for example the footage of the commando raid on the Nahal Oz enemy position east of Shujayeh.
As a result, the Resistance’s media arm became a credible source of information for the Israeli public, just like the case has been with Hezbollah. The Israeli air force became a tactical problem that could be overcome by deploying the elements of initiative and maneuver.
Even in the course of repelling ground incursions, attacks on armored vehicles, and sniper attacks on soldiers, the intense Israeli aerial bombardment did not impact the performance of the Resistance in combat, though it caused huge devastation in Palestinian infrastructure.
What characterized this war was the fact that the Resistance was able to prevent the occupation from pushing deep into Gaza, irrespective of claims by Israeli leaders that their operation was limited. This made it possible to maintain contiguity among the areas of the Gaza Strip. The Resistance also repelled marine attacks, and for the first time, the Resistance deployed extensively along the shore.
In addition to the above, the Resistance factions were able to turn the occupation soldiers from hunters to prey, when they declared that they intended to capture as many soldiers as possible. So far, al-Qassam has disclosed having captured Israeli soldier Shaul Oron prior to the massacre in Shujaiya.
Now, all the factions are at a crossroads. They could either continue preparation and development of their capabilities, and deploy new surprises in any future conflict, or the politicians could limit their successful track record.
The Resistance starts where it left off
In the recent war, the Resistance began its shelling where it had left off two years ago. The first attack by al-Quds Brigades targeted the occupied city of Tel Aviv. And like the war began with bombing this city, the final five minutes saw the bombardment of Tel Aviv for one more time.

[T]he Resistance factions were able to turn the occupation soldiers from hunters to prey.

 

The Resistance, especially al-Qassam Brigades, showed off the extent at which the range of its rockets has developed, now touching on 100 km and more. The Resistance declared it had bombed the occupied city of Haifa using R-160 rockets, which the Israeli occupation concluded were a modified version of the Syrian-made M-302 rockets that Hamas acquired before the enemy seized the Klos-C cargo ship in the Red Sea. According to Israeli claims, that ship was carrying 40 rockets of that type.
On the other hand, Israel was forced to deploy Iron Dome batteries along a very large area of occupied Palestine (eight batteries), especially in major cities, unlike what happened previously, when they were deployed in the vicinity of Gaza. Although the Iron Dome showed some improvement with its ability to tackle “decoy rockets,” it did not show great ability relative to the number of missiles the system launched, especially in intercepting 120mm mortar shells that have a range of up to 12 km.

 

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!

Putin Calls for Talks on ’Statehood’ for Eastern Ukraine

Local Editor

Russian President Vladimir PutinRussian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday dramatically raised the stakes in the Ukraine conflict by calling for the first time for statehood to be considered for the restive east of the former Soviet state.

“We need to immediately begin substantive talks … on questions of the political organization of society and statehood for southeastern Ukraine with the goal of protecting the lawful interests of the people who live there,” Putin was quoted as saying by Russian news agencies on a TV show broadcast in the far east of the country.

Russia has previously only called for greater rights under a decentralized federal system to be accorded to the eastern regions of Ukraine, where predominantly Russian-speakers live.

In the program, taped on Friday, Putin did not directly address additional Western sanctions on Russia.

Putin however blamed the crisis in Ukraine on the West, accusing it of supporting a “coup” against pro-Kremlin president Viktor Yanukovych in February.

“They should have known that Russia cannot stand aside when people are being shot almost at point-blank,” said Putin, adding that he did not have in mind “the Russian state but the Russian people.

Putin also denied that Moscow has sent regular troops to fight in Ukraine, but pro-Russian rebels have said that many Russian soldiers have volunteered while “on vacation”.

Source: AFP

31-08-2014 – 15:10 Last updated 31-08-2014 – 15:10

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Quasi-borders for a quasi-state: In Lebanon, partisanship trumps all else

Syrian refugees arrive at the Masnaa border crossing on the Lebanon-Syria border on August 7, 2014, after fleeing the restive northeastern Lebanese town of Arsal ahead of returning to Syria. (Photo: AFP/STR)
Published Friday, August 29, 2014
The issue of protecting the Lebanese-Syrian border is one of the most pressing demands being made in light of the Syrian war. However, the border issue in Lebanon has never been of a military, security, or even geographical nature.

 

In a French Foreign Ministry document dated May 27, 1938, one finds the following account: “A dispute erupted between the Druze residents of Majdal Shams and the Sunnis of Jubata al-Khashab, both Syrian towns located in Mount Hermon. The two religious groups summoned their coreligionists from Lebanon and Palestine to assist them. The outcome was clashes between the two communities, who ignored the demarcated borders between the three countries.”
It is hard to find a better example than this French document for the true nature of the borders among these three countries, which had collapsed under the weight of sectarianism when the Druze and Sunnis in Lebanon and Palestine scrambled to rescue their brethren in Syria. The incident in 1938 is not that different from what is happening today, under the weight of foreign interventions, and the growingly-easy violation of the borders, as though they do not exist at all.
Borders have long formed the political and sovereign framework that determines the fate of countries, which often fight long wars to preserve their territories. Today, these borders, particularly in the Middle East, are a fascinating topic for researchers studying the impact of the dissolution of the boundaries established by the Sykes-Picot agreement, and the conditions in the countries of the region that still maintain a bare minimum of their territorial integrity like Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and Jordan. In addition, the radical Islamist group the Islamic State has recently torn down some of these borders with a violent show of force, and it is almost certain that this will happen again with other borders.
The conclusion that one Lebanese researcher reached in a paper presented at an American conference on the Middle East, is that “partisanship” of all kinds dismantles borders, and supersedes all kinds of geographical demarcation. It is from the viewpoint of partisanship that we can understand how legal and geographical boundaries are breached when a religious community or a tribe wants to assist its kin, and perhaps what is happening in Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq clearly underscores the role of such partisanship.
The situation at the northern and eastern borders in Lebanon is not really an anomalous event compared against both ancient and modern Lebanese history.
In the present day, militants have travelled to and from Syria to “help” their Sunni brethren in Ersal and elsewhere; Hezbollah fighters have crossed to Syria to assist their allies or defend Shia areas in Syria; Alawis have come from Syria to Jabal Mohsen; and Sunnis have gone from the North to fight in Syria. Sunnis and Shia are going from Lebanon to Syria and returning, as though the two countries are one open arena, as the late Syrian President Hafez al-Assad suggested in a famous speech in 1976.
Not long ago, some Christians crossed the southern border to Israel, and so did the Druze who wanted to communicate with other Druze in Palestine. Indeed, if it weren’t partisanship that is the main dynamic that overcomes geographical boundaries, then what can explain the solidarity between Christians in Lebanon and Christians in Mosul, Maaloula, and Wadi al-Nasara (the Valley of the Christians)? Or what can explain the reason Shia in Lebanon have scrambled to help those defending the Sayeda Zainab shrine in Damascus?
The borders stipulated in the Lebanese constitution were not what protected Lebanon geographically or politically. This was never the case, particularly when the state of Greater Lebanon was declared, causing confusion regarding the map attached to this declaration, which turned out to be based on maps from the French campaign in 1862.
According to Issam Khalifa in The Lebanese-Syrian Border, this map was not based on accurate topographic data, but rather on general exploratory outlines that contained many irregularities.

“Partisanship” of all kinds dismantles borders, and supersedes all kinds of geographical demarcation.

 

Lebanon is one of the states that political science would designate as a “quasi-state,” which needs international and regional sponsorship and care to remain viable, especially since peoples of such states would not have usually been consulted when their states were created and their borders were drawn. From this standpoint, Lebanon never had stand-alone borders that offered comprehensive protection as otherwise suggested by Article A of the Preamble to the Lebanese Constitution: “Lebanon is a sovereign, free, and independent country. It is a final homeland for all its citizens. It is unified in its territory, people, and institutions within the boundaries defined in this Constitution and recognized internationally.”
After all, which borders is the constitution talking about exactly? Who is recognizing them when the Lebanese themselves are violating these borders? Are the borders in question the ones stipulated in the constitution? According to the first article,
“On the North: From the mouth of Nahr al-Kabir along a line following the course of this river to its point of junction with Wadi Khalid opposite Jisr Al-Qamar.
On the East: The summit line separating the Wadi Khalid and Nahr al-Asi, passing by the villages of Mu’aysarah, Harbanah, Hayt, Ibish, Faysan to the height of the two villages of Brifa and Matraba. This line follows the northern boundary of the Ba`albak District at the north eastern and south eastern directions, thence the eastern boundaries of the districts of Ba`albak, Biqa’, Hasbayya, and Rashayya.
On the South: The present southern boundaries of the districts of Sûr (Tyre) and Marji`yun.
On the West: The Mediterranean.”
Or are there other borders that the Lebanese have accepted for themselves, when politics, partisanship, and sectarianism trumped all else, as had happened at all major historical events, for example with the conflicts of 1958, 1967, 1973, and 1975, and with the Syrian entry in 1976 and the repeated Israeli invasions through the southern border?
The Cairo Agreement

Lebanon is one of the states that political science would designate as a “quasi-state,” which needs international and regional sponsorship and care to remain viable

 

The Cairo Agreement in 1969 was the first official document sanctioning armed struggle against Israel out of the Lebanese border, bearing in mind that following the creation of the PLO, the Arab regimes had agreed among one another not to establish military bases in Lebanon, and that those who join the Liberation Army would not be allowed to return to Lebanon (Farid al-Khazen, The Disintegration of the State in Lebanon).
The Cairo Agreement was the translation of developments on the field since the summer of 1968, with the growing number of Palestinian Resistance fighters (Fedayeen) infiltrating the Lebanese border from Syria heading to the Arqoub region. On June 14, 1968, Palestinian Resistance operations ignored the southern border for the first time, which in principle was protected by the armistice agreement with Israel. The latter agreement states that “no element of the land, sea or air military or paramilitary forces of either party, including non-regular forces, shall commit any warlike or hostile act against the military or paramilitary forces of the other party, or against civilians in territory under the control of that party.”
On October 30, Israel launched its first operation inside Lebanese territory, targeting a Fatah base. In December, Israel carried out an attack on Beirut airport. Since 1968, more and more Fedayeen began to infiltrate from Syria to Arqoub, with growing number of clashes taking place between them and the Lebanese army, the first of which occurred on October 29, 1968 in Arqoub.
In 1969, a series of confrontations erupted in Majdal Silm, Deir Mimas, Udaysah and al-Khiam. With the rising tension and the deepening Sunni-Christian rift over how to deal with Palestinian armed resistance in Lebanon, the secret Cairo Agreement was signed, despite opposition from Raymond Edde, who saw it as a violation of the armistice agreement. The Cairo Agreement facilitated the movement of the Fedayeen through the southern and eastern border, and allowed Palestinian fighters to flock to and from Lebanon, amid broad Sunni support and cover. Khazen wrote, “The Sunni leadership, represented by Rashid Karami, called for a policy of coordination with the Fedayeen… when the situation was aggravated with the Fedayeen, it was not possible to take military action against Palestinian fighters without unequivocal political support from the Sunni poles, especially the prime minister.”
Syria and the artificial borders
The problem did not just involve the Lebanese border with Israel. In 1969 and after clashes between the Lebanese army and the Palestinians, Syria closed its border with Lebanon, on October 22. Since that time, Syria continued to deal with those borders as artificial boundaries, and spared no occasion since it entered Lebanon officially and until it left officially to express its vision for the joint border, as evident from the texts of the Brotherhood and Coordination Treaty between the two countries signed in 1989.
Moreover, the problem of the Shebaa Farms, which Syria seized in 1956, was not the only border dispute between the two countries, though it took on an added political and military importance in recent years in light of the military conflict between Israel and Lebanon, specifically with Hezbollah, which still calls for the liberation of the Shebaa Farms that Israel occupied in 1967. This is while bearing in mind that the National Dialogue Commission in Lebanon had discussed the Shebaa Farms in the course of discussing the issue of demarcating Lebanon’s border, but was soon drawn into a linguistic debate over the “demarcation versus specification” of the borders.
Nor can we forget the number of Lebanese-Syrian incidents along the joint border, which intensified after the Syrian war, or the points that need a clearer demarcation including along the maritime borders, which could take on an additional importance when the issue of Lebanon’s oil and gas resources is discussed in earnest, regionally and internationally.
Israel and the Blue Line
Lebanon lacks modern and clear maps, and Israel deals with the southern border as though it doesn’t exist. However, Lebanon’s problem is that since its creation as an entity, it has failed to demarcate its border in all directions. With the withdrawal of the Israeli army from its territory, Lebanon was forced to accept the Blue Line, which took years to demarcate in coordination with the UN peacekeeping force.
Today, two mechanisms govern the southern border, the armistice agreement and UNSC resolution 1701, which was the result of the 2006 war in Lebanon. The first does not contain a full description of the border, but only states that the armistice agreement “adheres to the international border between Lebanon and Palestine.” This is while resolution 1701 stresses the international community’s respect for Lebanon’s political independence “within its internationally recognized borders,” but also its vehement support for respecting the Blue Line.
The March 14 alliance in Lebanon has tried to take advantage of this formulation to call for implementing the same mechanism along all Lebanon’s borders, to protest Hezbollah’s opening of the border and its involvement in the war in Syria.
However, the main problem with this is that the international resolution had been passed unanimously by the Security Council with the approval of the Israeli and Lebanese governments, something that is not possible at present: Neither is the international community prepared to expand the framework of the international peacekeeping force, nor are the countries concerned prepared to expose their soldiers to the risk of being taken hostage in a region witnessing large-scale slaughter and beheadings. Furthermore, the government in Lebanon would not consent unanimously to turning the border into an internationalized area, in light of the conflict between the Syrian regime and its opponents, especially given the threat of the Islamic State expanding into the Lebanese border.
All this takes us back to square one and the issue of the “quasi-state,” which perhaps needs something more than protection from the international community to survive.
This article is an edited translation from the Arabic Edition.
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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!

Ukraine: Five facts and fallacies you need to know about the US-Nato drive to war

Twenty years of US policy have led to this fateful American-Russian confrontation. Putin may have contributed to it, but his role has been almost entirely reactive.

http://www.stopwar.org.uk/news/ukraine-five-facts-and-fallacies-you-need-to-know-about-the-us-nato-drive-to-war#.VALRB-kg85s

Nato expansion

Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but not to their own facts. The new Cold War orthodoxy rests almost entirely on fallacious opinions. Five of those fallacies are particularly important today.

Fallacy No. 1: Ever since the end of the Soviet Union in 1991, Washington has treated post-Communist Russia generously as a desired friend and partner, making every effort to help it become a democratic, prosperous member of the Western system of international security. Unwilling or unable, Russia rejected this American altruism, emphatically under Putin.

Fact: Beginning in the 1990s with the Clinton administration, every American president and Congress has treated post-Soviet Russia as a defeated nation with inferior legitimate rights at home and abroad. This triumphalist, winner-take-all approach has been spearheaded by the expansion of NATO—accompanied by non-reciprocal negotiations and now missile defense—into Russia’s traditional zones of national security, while in reality excluding it from Europe’s security system. Early on, Ukraine and, to a lesser extent, Georgia were the ultimate goals. As an influential Washington Post columnist explained in 2004: “The West wants to finish the job begun with the fall of the Berlin Wall and continue Europe’s march to the east…. The great prize is Ukraine.” He was echoed in 2013, on the eve of the current crisis, by Carl Gershman, head of the federally funded National Endowment for Democracy: “Ukraine is the biggest prize.”

Fallacy No. 2:There exists a “Ukrainian people” who yearn to escape centuries of Russian influence and join the West.

Fact: As every informed person knows, Ukraine is a country long divided by ethnic, linguistic, religious, cultural, economic and political differences—particularly its western and eastern regions, but not only those. When the current crisis began in 2013, Ukraine was one state, but it was not a single people or a united nation. Some of these divisions were made worse after 1991 by a corrupt elite, but most of them had developed over centuries.

Fallacy No. 3:In November 2013, the European Union, backed by Washington, offered Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych a benign association with European democracy and prosperity. Yanukovych was prepared to sign the agreement, but Putin bullied and bribed him into rejecting it. Thus began Kiev’s Maidan protests and all that has since followed.

Fact: The EU proposal was a reckless provocation compelling the democratically elected president of a deeply divided country to choose between Russia and the West. So too was the EU’s rejection of Putin’s counterproposal of a Russian-European-American plan to save Ukraine from financial collapse. On its own, the EU proposal was not economically feasible. Offering little financial assistance, it required the Ukrainian government to enact harsh austerity measures and would have sharply curtailed its longstanding and essential economic relations with Russia. Nor was the EU proposal entirely benign. It included protocols requiring Ukraine to adhere to Europe’s “military and security” policies—which meant in effect, without mentioning the alliance, NATO. In short, it was not Putin’s alleged “aggression” that initiated today’s crisis but instead a kind of velvet aggression by Brussels and Washington to bring all of Ukraine into the West, including (in the fine print) into NATO.

Fallacy No. 4: Today’s civil war in Ukraine was caused by Putin’s aggressive response to the peaceful Maidan protests against Yanukovych’s decision.

Fact: In February 2014, the radicalized Maidan protests, strongly influenced by extreme nationalist and even semi-fascist street forces, turned violent. Hoping for a peaceful resolution, European foreign ministers brokered a compromise between Maidan’s parliamentary representatives and Yanukovych. It would have left him as president, with less power, of a coalition reconciliation government until new elections this December. Within hours, violent street fighters aborted the agreement. Europe’s leaders and Washington did not defend their own diplomatic accord. Yanukovych fled to Russia. Minority parliamentary parties representing Maidan and, predominantly, western Ukraine—among them Svoboda, an ultranationalist movement previously anathematized by the European Parliament as incompatible with European values—formed a new government. They also revised the existing Constitution in their favor. Washington and Brussels endorsed the coup and have supported the outcome ever since. Everything that followed, from Russia’s annexation of Crimea and the spread of rebellion in southeastern Ukraine to the civil war and Kiev’s “anti-terrorist operation,” was triggered by the February coup. Putin’s actions have been mostly reactive.

Fallacy No. 5: The only way out of the crisis is for Putin to end his “aggression” and call off his agents in southeastern Ukraine.

Fact: The underlying causes of the crisis are Ukraine’s own internal divisions, not primarily Putin’s actions. The essential factor escalating the crisis since May has been Kiev’s “anti-terrorist” military campaign against its own citizens, now mainly in Luhansk and Donetsk. Putin influences and no doubt aids the Donbass “self-defenders.” Considering the pressure on him in Moscow, he is likely to continue to do so, perhaps even more directly, but he does not control them. If Kiev’s assault ends, Putin probably can compel the rebels to negotiate. But only the Obama administration can compel Kiev to stop, and it has not done so.

In short, twenty years of US policy have led to this fateful American-Russian confrontation. Putin may have contributed to it along the way, but his role during his fourteen years in power has been almost entirely reactive—indeed, it is a complaint frequently lodged against him by more hardline forces in Moscow.

 

The Facts About The Fake ‘Russian Invasion’ of Ukraine

The Facts About The ‘Russian Invasion’

http://rinf.com/alt-news/editorials/facts-russian-invasion/

Stephen Lendman
RINF Alternative News

Claims about Russia invading Ukraine are fabricated. Big Lies  proliferate. On Thursday, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki lied saying

“we’re seeing…a pattern of escalating aggression in Ukraine from the Russians and Russian-backed separatists.”

“And it’s clear that Russia has not only stepped up its presence in eastern Ukraine and intervened directly with combat forces –  armored vehicles, artillery, and surface-to-air systems – and is actively fighting Ukrainian forces as well as playing a direct supporting role to the separatist proxies and mercenaries.”

The White House is considering a range of options, she said. “We have additional tools and sanctions that we could certainly choose to put in place.”

US ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, repeated the Big Lie. His Twitter messages falsely claim “an increasing number of Russian troops are intervening directly in fighting on Ukrainian territory.”

Russia sent its newest air defense systems, he claims. At an August 28 emergency Security Council meeting, US envoy Samantha Power lied saying:

“Instead of listening, instead of heeding the demands of the international community and the rules of the international order, at every step, Russia has come before this Council to say everything except the truth.”

“It has manipulated. It has obfuscated. It has outright lied. So we have learned to measure Russia by its actions and not by its words.”

On Friday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov debunked spurious invasion claims,” saying:

“It’s not the first time we’ve heard wild guesses, though facts have never been presented so far.”

“There have been reports about satellite imagery exposing Russian troop movements.”

“They turned out to be images from video games. The latest accusations happen to be much the same quality.”

“We’ll react by remaining persistent in our policies to stay bloodshed and give a start to the nationwide dialogue and negotiations about the future of Ukraine, with participation of all Ukrainian regions and political forces, something that was agreed upon in Geneva back in April and in Berlin (in August), yet what is being so deliberately evaded by our Western partners now.”

On Friday, Vladimir Putin noted clear self-defense forces success against Kiev’s military.

At the same time, Donbass area fighting poses a “grave danger” to beleaguered residents, he said.

He and Lavrov deplore war. They’ve all-out for peaceful conflict resolution since fighting erupted in April.

“(O)nce again (he) call(ed) on the Ukrainian authorities to immediately stop military actions, cease fire, sit down at the negotiating table with Donbass representatives, and resolve all the accumulated problems exclusively via peaceful means.”

Moscow’s envoy Vitaly Churkin accused Kiev of waging war on its own people.

“Ukrainian forces in defiance of all norms of international humanitarian law and just moral principles are indiscriminately attacking cities, residential areas and infrastructures,” he explained.

His comments came on the same day Kiev forces attacked four buses of refugees seeking refuge in Russia. Its dirty war shows no mercy.

The New York Times is America’s lead source of media misinformation and propaganda.

On Thursday, it headlined “Ukraine Leader Says ‘Huge Loads of Arms’ Pour in From Russia,” saying:

“…Russian forces are on the move in Eastern Ukraine…” Its president, Petro Poroshenko, accused Russia “of an invasion to aid the separatists.”

“(H)is national security council ordered mandatory conscription to help counter what he called an ‘extremely difficult’ threat.”

Poroshenko lied claiming

“Columns of heavy artillery, huge loads of arms and regular Russian servicemen (invaded) Ukraine from Russia through the uncontrolled border area.”

“Mercenaries, along with regular servicemen, (are) trying to overrun positions held by the Ukrainian military.”

So-called NATO satellite images were cited as proof. Its web site claimed they show “Russian combat troops inside Ukraine.”

Comprehensive Crisis and Operations Management Centre director Brigadier General Nico Tak lied claiming:

“Over the past two weeks we have noted a significant escalation in both the level and sophistication of Russia’s military interference in Ukraine.”

“The satellite images released today provide additional evidence that Russian combat soldiers, equipped with sophisticated heavy weaponry, are operating inside Ukraine’s sovereign territory.”

Fact: No Russian invasion occurred.

Fact: Claims otherwise are fake.

Fact: MSM regurgitate official Big Lies.

Fact: Commercial satellite operator DigitalGlobe provided the satellite images.

Fact: Both sides use Russian weapons.

Fact: Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) Prime Minister Alexander Zakharchenko said around three to four thousand Russian volunteers are aiding self-defense forces.

Fact: Many are retired Russian servicemen, he said.

Fact: Others on active duty used leave time to help “us struggle for our freedom.”

Fact: Moscow didn’t send them.

Fact: Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Ukrainian monitoring team and Russia’s representative said no Russian forces are present on Ukraine’s border.

Fact: Claims of a Russian invasion are false, they said.

Russia’s Defense Ministry exposed a Forgotten Regiment (FR) Russian veterans organization hoax about Russian units involved in Southeast Ukraine fighting.

According to Ministry spokesman General Igor Konashenkov, FR claims have “no relation to reality.”

“We have studied the contents of this hoax, and are obliged to disappoint its overseas authors and their few sympathizers in Russia, who have joined forces to publish their ‘revelation…’ ”

The “combat ready” infantry, artillery, paratrooper and reconnaissance exist. They’re engaged in routine training exercises in different parts of Russia.

They’re not involved in Southeastern Ukraine conflict. Claims otherwise are spurious.

According to Moscow’s permanent EU representative Vladimir Chizhov:

NATO, Washington and EU states presented no evidence of Russian military involvement in Ukraine.

Misinformation substitutes for hard truths. Often it’s disseminated ahead of important EU meetings.

This time it precedes an August 30 Brussels summit. Expect more sanctions to follow. Expect Russia to respond in kind.

Washington Post editors are militantly anti-Russian. On August 28, they headlined “The West must make Mr. Putin pay for his aggression.”

They lied claiming Putin

“sen(t) Russian forces openly into Ukraine in the past 48 hours.” They called doing so “a watershed…”

“If Mr. Putin does not pay a high price for this naked, if still cynically denied, attack on his neighbor, the precedent could sow instability (from) the Baltic Sea…to the South China Sea…, they said.”

Despite no evidence whatever of Russian revanchist aims, they accused Putin of wanting control over Southeastern Ukraine.

“(T)he United States and its allies cannot afford to let Mr. Putin break the rules. It is time to hit Russia with the full brunt of financial sanctions” and much more, they said.

They want Ukraine provided with arms and intelligence. They want military related sales to Russia halted. They want NATO strengthened.

They ludicrously claimed nations worldwide “rely on US leadership and its commitment to the rule of law…”

No country more systematically violates it. None more egregiously. None poses a greater threat to humanity.

Don’t expect WaPo editors to explain. Or their Wall Street Journal counterparts. On August 28, theyheadlined “Putin Marches Ahead.”

The joined with other MSM scoundrels claiming Russia invaded Ukraine. In February, they accused Moscow of “grabbing Crimea.”

They ignored near Crimean unanimity to join Russia. They now accused Russian forces of “firing artillery at Ukrainian positions from both (their own) territory and inside Ukraine.”

They claim Putin’s strategy is “to open a land bridge between Russia and Crimea.” He wants its economy “knit more closely to Russia’s,” they said.

“(E)scalation…open(ed) up another front for the Ukrainian military as it tries to regain control over the east.”

“Kiev forces will now have to fight on a third front against Russian soldiers and armor.”

Journal editors want a “serious response to this serious challenge to Europe’s political order…” They barely stopped short of urging Obama to declare war.

The risk of direct US-led NATO confrontation grows. Doing so belligerently is madness.

It risks the unthinkable. It risks potential global war. Deescalating crisis conditions matters most.

Washington’s imperial agenda undermines it. The worst of all possible outcomes may follow.

Israel’s Embedded American Operatives Aid the Genocide in Gaza

http://rinf.com/alt-news/editorials/israels-embedded-american-operatives-aid-genocide-gaza/

us israel flags

Israel’s Embedded American Operatives Aid the Genocide in Gaza

Donn Marten
RINF Alternative News

Extremist Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin “Bibi” Netanyahu enjoys an overwhelmingly accommodating media in the United States along with a contemptible Congress packed with corrupt and cowardly weasels, lickspittles and nut case religious zealots whose dedication to a foreign country stabs their actual constituents in the back. The fealty that Netanyahu receives from this lamentable “co-equal” branch of government was evident when he received 29 standing ovations during an address to the U.S. Congress in 2011. He also is able to play the corrupt state-corporate media like a Stradivarius in order to receive an unprecedented forum on U.S. national television to push his lies and propaganda to sell the product that is the slaughter of women and children in Gaza.

In the early days of Operation Protective Edge – one of those deceptive military style names that sell so well to star-spangled schmucks in the Homeland – Bibi was a fixture on those Sunday morning “news” shows that are nothing more than propaganda organs of the warfare state. His fascistic genocidal policies are routinely given cover by “America’s most trusted name in news” and mealy-mouthed celebrity pundit Wolf Blitzer, a former AIPAC lobbyist whose objectivity is non-existent when it comes to defending extremist Israeli actions. His ridiculous feature on exploring the “terror tunnels of Hamas” last month was as ludicrous and phony as when Geraldo Rivera opened Al Capone’s vault.

 photo hagee_zps07699bc2.jpgMuch of the power of “King Bibi” in the domestic U.S. comes courtesy of foreign agents such as AIPAC and the larger Israel Lobby but also a well-financed, integrated network of American “Christian Zionist” churches and organizations that assist in melding Israeli aggression and the ongoing quest for Lebensraum with end times eschatology. This is the bastardized biblical reinterpreting in which Israel will play a major role of the return of Jesus Christ to the planet Earth as espoused in the mega-selling Left Behind series of apocalyptic pulp novels.

Foremost among the Christian Zionist organizations is CUFI or Christians United for Israel led by Texas radical cleric John Hagee. There is no more important bastion of the chicken-fried brand of cracker “Christianity” to the mustering of the flock to carry the torch for Netanyahu’s war crimes in America. The annual CUFI summit was just held last month in Washington and attracted the exalted high priests of Israeli supremacy and the genocide necessary to deliver to Bibi everything that God once promised and then some. The heavy hitters being the Grand Poobah of neocon propaganda William Kristol, the fiendish Iran-Contra criminal Elliott Abrams, former CIA Director James “World War IV” Woolsey and Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer who has been seriously referred to as “Bibi’s brain”. Additional guests of dishonor at this sordid soiree were the typical extremist Republicans, in particular the increasingly unstable Senator Lindsey Graham, batshit crazy Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann, Senator Jim Inhofe who is squealing like a stuck pig about ISIS destroying an American city and the wettest of wet dreams of Christian fascists who have long been awaiting the arrival of their führer: Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, a bizarre land of chicken-fried motherfuckery.

David Wiegel writes of the event for Slate in a piece entitled “Inside the Most Insanely Pro-Israel Meeting You Could Ever Attend” from which I excerpt the following:

The supporters of CUFI moved up the convention center escalators and took their seats for a plenary session. Onstage were the first guests, all recognizable from Fox News—Weekly Standard editor-in-chief Bill Kristol, onetime CIA director James Woolsey, and the Council on Foreign Relations fellow Elliott Abrams, a presidentially pardoned veteran of foreign policy disasters on two continents. Sitting right next to them was John Hagee, the burly Christian Zionist pastor who founded CUFI in 2006 He leaned into a microphone, passionately explaining why supporters of Israel should not be tricked by casualty reports.

“Since July 8, more than 1,000 rockets have been launched into Israel by Hamas from Gaza,” said Hagee, who speaks with a captivating rumble that could make a brunch order sound like a lost gospel. “Two-thirds of Israel’s population has had to run to bomb shelters, having 90 seconds to save their lives.”

The objective of Hamas, said Hagee, “is to win the media war with dead civilians. We’ve come to Washington to ask our government to stop demanding for Israel to show restraint.”

More than 4,800 evangelicals and Jews broke into applause. Some raised their arms and turned up their palms; a shofar-maker from New Jersey blew on one of his horns.

“If a foreign power had launched 1,000 rockets into America, we would be pulling the gates of the White House down,” said Hagee. “Let Israel finish the job. Let every rocket be dismantled. Let every tunnel be destroyed.”

Hagee had set the theme: This year’s CUFI conference, followed by its members’ lobbying trips to Congress, would pressure the Obama administration not to broker an early cease-fire in Israel. The people of Israel would not suffer so that “John Kerry could win his Nobel Peace prize.” (Hagee made that joke again at an evening, music-and-dancing stuffed CUFI celebration, which started with a taped message from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.) American evangelicals needed to imagine themselves as Israelis, praise the “miracle” of the Iron Dome missile defense system, and understand that the Jews had a biblical mandate to the entire Holy Land.

“I’ll bless those that bless you and I’ll curse those that curse you,” said Hagee, quoting from the book of Genesis. “That’s God’s foreign policy statement, and it has not changed.”

AND

That was backed up by the speeches, and by the hallway conversations. Israel was one war away from destroying Hamas—unless John Kerry stopped it. Iran was one missile away from a second Holocaust—unless the Obama administration acted. On Monday night, Hagee gave a special award to Republican super PAC donor Sheldon Adelson and his wife, Miriam, who turned and thanked the mostly Christian audience for backing Israel.

“If you had been there during the Holocaust, you would have stood up and fought for the Jewish people,” said Miriam Adelson. “And maybe the Holocaust wouldn’t have happened.”

“I’ve never had a greater warm feeling than being honored by Pastor Hagee,” said a beaming Sheldon Adelson.

But the honors were mutual. Speaker after speaker gave the evangelicals ammunition for the next time someone criticized the Gaza operation, or shamed Israel over the body count.

“Here’s a message for America: Don’t ever turn your back on Israel, because God will turn his back on us,” said South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham. “More Germans died in World War II than American soldiers. That didn’t make the Germans right.”

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who debuted at the conference in 2013 and got its loudest ovation this year, walked the crowd through all the Obama administration betrayals. Remember, how Kerry had warned that Israel could become an apartheid state—a “slander and a lie.” Remember how Kerry had acknowledged the BDS movement and angered Israel’s leaders. The Obama administration was naive; CUFI wasn’t.

“It is Hamas who is putting women and children on top of the rockets,” said Cruz, “because they value the missiles and rockets more than they value their own civilians.”

It could have been scripted by Joseph Goebbels and choregraphed by Leni Riefenstahl and it was taking place right here in America in the city of sin on the Potomac, not far from AIPAC central command. You have to give it to Netanyahu,he is a chronic and dedicated meddler in U.S. domestic politics and is able to consistently get his message out despite the lies, spin and demagoguery. What often goes unmentioned is the work of thousands of activist electronic shock troops in the cyber wars who churn out racist screeds and blog posts, invade comment threads and engage in coordinated blog swarms to spew accusations of anti-Semitism at critics.

 photo Genocide-s_zpse342920a.jpgSometimes this backfires as it did a few weeks ago when The Times of Israel was forced to retract a blog post by an American-Israeli calling for the genocide of the Palestinians. In a deranged screed that was published by The Times of Israel and then rapidly removed after mounting outrage triggered by the ill-advised posting by Yochanan Gordon. The piece also appeared at The Five Towns Jewish Times, a Long Island based newspaper and website founded by Gordon’s father. Both sites rapidly issued apologies for the piece and should have hanged their heads in shame for ever allowing such a thing to slip by their editors. But that is only based on the assumption that such sentiment is not widely held and it was only the brouhaha that led to the retractions.

In his outrageously over the top screed, entitled “When Genocide is Permissable” Gordon made light of an ongoing humanitarian catastrophe, trivializing it with sports references, in particular NBA basketball:

I wasn’t aware of this, but it seems that the nature of warfare has undergone a major shift over the years. Where wars were usually waged to defeat the opposing side, today it seems – and judging by the number of foul calls it would indicate – that today’s wars are fought to a draw. I mean, whoever heard of a timeout in war? An NBA Basketball game allows six timeouts for each team during the course of a game, but last I checked this is a war! We are at war with an enemy whose charter calls for the annihilation of our people. Nothing, then, can be considered disproportionate when we are fighting for our very right to live.

The Times of Israel’s statement was:

This blog post, which was described by our Ops & Blogs editor as both damnable and ignorant, blatantly breached The Times of Israel’s editorial guidelines.

We have discontinued the writer’s blog.

But the Times allowed a similar post which was couched in biblical language to remain.

Erwin E. Blank writes in his piece entitled “1 Samuel 15:18″:

1 Samuel 15:18-Samuel said, “Is it not true, though you were little in your own eyes, you were made the head of the tribes of Israel? And the LORD anointed you king over Israel, 18and the LORD sent you on a mission, and said, ‘Go and utterly destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are exterminated.’ 19“Why then did you not obey the voice of the LORD, but rushed upon the spoil and did what was evil in the sight of the LORD?”…

The great big book of evil, hatred, persecution, death and violence is always whipped out to justify extermination and conquest by these people and you have to admit that it is a great scam in favor of Israel. Which is why it is so important that the Netanyahu regime continues to feed their utterly dishonest and hateful bullshit to the American rapture-heads whose lack of intellectual curiosity and fanatical dogma leads to the best certitude a continued boatload of sheckels can buy. There will be many of them as well as dollars and perhaps even comped blowjobs from hookers at the Las Vegas Sands courtesy of Bibi’s buddy, the casino magnate Sheldon Adelson. Shelly has already vowed to pump billions of his loot into the upcoming 2016 U.S. presidential elections so he can see Tehran reduced to a glowing pile of nuclear embers before he departs this mortal coil. The Times of Israel has nothing on Adelson’s Israel Hayom which in terms of pure, dehumanizing agitprop has no equal and would have even given Julius Streicher’s notorious Der Stürmer a run for the money back in it’s heyday. Adelson is at the top of the food chain in American political influence when it comes to forcing the agenda of extremist right-wing Israeli supremacy down the throats of U.S. voters.

But I digress…

Gordon and Blank have much company at the Times of Israel when it comes to American based, genocidal zealots. For example there is also a nutcase who writes there named Michael Lumish who expressed similar sentiment in a post on his own blog, a no-frills, amateurish piece of crap imaginatively called Israel Thrives. In his piece entitled “Jews Need to Bomb More Nursery Schools in Gaza” the author writes:

And not just nursery schools, of course, but elementary schools, as well.

We need to bomb schools and hospitals.

It is exceedingly important that Israel bomb the holy crap out of hospitals… and nursing homes.

We need to bomb nursery schools, hospitals, and nursing homes. Wherever people are the weakest in Gaza, that is what we must bomb.

And when I say “bomb” I do not mean one little bomb. What I mean is flatten.

Of course, were it not for the fact that so many Arabs believe they have some Allah-ordained right to kill Jews then Israel would not need to bomb nursery schools and hospitals and nursing homes or any place else where Hamas uses old people and sick people and women and children as a means to defend themselves and their rockets.

Israelis uses rockets to defend their women and children.

Hamasniks uses women and children to defend their rockets.

The bottom line is this, however, if Arabs don’t want war they should not wage war.

So long as the Arab majority insists upon bombing the tiny Jewish minority in that part of the world then the Jews of the Middle East are going to defend themselves and what that means is fighting back and what that means is dead Arabs, including children, because civilian populations ALWAYS suffer in war.

To take Lumish’s argument that “civilian populations ALWAYS suffer in war” to its logical conclusion it could actually be interpreted that Hitler’s rounding up and slaughter of 6 million Jews (along with millions of others) during World War II was a just cause. You know, in times of war “civilian populations ALWAYS suffer” so fuck them. But pointing out any of the contradictions, hypocrisy and similarities between Netanyahu’s Israel and Hitler’s Germany (and there are many) is like casting pearls before swine. The piece is outrageous and while the author belatedly added the term “semi-snark” to the title because he is a coward lacking the stones to stand by his convictions do not make it any less vile than the calls for genocide run by the Times of Israel.

Lumish’s bio at the Times of Israel states that he: “is a PhD in American history from the Pennsylvania State University and has taught at PSU, San Francisco State University, and the City College of San Francisco.” AND ). “He has in recent years given conference papers on American cultural and intellectual history at The International Society for the History of Behavioral and Social Sciences in Dublin, Ireland, as well as at the Western Historical Association in Phoenix, Arizona and the American Cultural Association in New Orleans, Louisiana.” I wonder if any institution that invites this guy to speak or otherwise participate in research studies might have second thoughts if they understood that he moonlights as a propagandist for a notorious child murderer.

Also, for a man with such credentials in education it is rather bizarre that he would be calling for the Israeli bombing, or has he puts it “flattening” of schools. But it is something far deeper with people like Lumish and his ilk – it is about the eradication of a people. Goebbels would be proud.

Some of the actions of the domestic Israeli operatives (which could be accurately referred to as sleeper cells) go far beyond just activism and advocating for the extermination of a people into outright skullduggery. Just last week an expose by the website Common Dreams reports on the actions of man referred to by the handle of HamBaconEggs” or “Jason Beck” but both are two of a number of aliases or screen names as posted by the website. The scam involved the creation of a number of “sock puppets” where he would appear on articles, post outrageous anti-Semitic statements and then do combat with himself in order to discredit the site itself. It was a pretty sophisticated operation as is detailed in the special investigative report at Common Dreams entitled “The Double Identity of an “Anti-Semitic” Commenter” from which I excerpt:

Like many other news websites, Common Dreams has been plagued by inflammatory anti-Semitic comments following its stories. But on Common Dreams these posts have been so frequent and intense they have driven away donors from a nonprofit dependent on reader generosity.

A Common Dreams investigation has discovered that more than a thousand of these damaging comments over the past two years were written with a deceptive purpose by a Jewish Harvard graduate in his thirties who was irritated by the website’s discussion of issues involving Israel.

His intricate campaign, which he has admitted to Common Dreams, included posting comments by a screen name, “JewishProgressive,” whose purpose was to draw attention to and denounce the anti-Semitic comments that he had written under many other screen names.

The deception was many-layered. At one point he had one of his characters charge that the anti-Semitic comments and the criticism of the anti-Semitic comments must be written by “internet trolls who have been known to impersonate anti-Semites in order to then double-back and accuse others of supporting anti-Semitism”–exactly what he was doing. (Trolls are posters who foment discord.)

The impersonation, this character wrote, must be part of an “elaborate Hasbara setup,” referring to an Israeli international public-relations campaign. When Common Dreams finally confronted the man behind the deceptive posting, he denied that he himself was involved with Hasbara.

The piece is long and fascinating, it offers a rare glimpse at the elaborate network of Israeli cyber operatives in the U.S. so please take the time to read it and pass it around. The best way to deal with these people is to get the word out about their dishonesty and false identities. Again the expose is called “The Double Identity of an “Anti-Semitic” Commenter” and can be found at Common Dreams.

Those of us who are veterans of the blogosphere going back years – in my case nearly a decade now – have seen exactly what Common Dreams writes of. The “Hasbara” effort to influence U.S. opinion to support Israeli human rights abuses and garner support for an increasingly fascistic and closed society that is thoroughly examined in Max Blumenthal’s seminal book “Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel”. The efforts to spread propaganda and disrupt honest debate in America by Israel-first loyalist embeds has evolved greatly since the days of Megaphone with the advent of social media – but then again so has the ability to counter the campaign of disinformation, hatred and lies by Americans who have a functional moral compass.

This small sampling of de-facto foreign agents operating within the U.S. provide the grunt work for the “stars” of the Israel backed, anti-Muslim hate machine that continues to pollute America. With Gordon, Lumish and HamBaconEggs performing similar dirty work to pro-Nazi saboteurs in the run up to World War II it allows the rock stars of the evil anti-Muslim crusade to assume center stage. Some of the luminaries are Brigitte Gabriel, Pamela Gellar, Republican Congressman Peter King, former Congressman Allan West, the aforementioned Michelle Bachmann and a galaxy of others including the most sinister of all in HBO’s celebrity host Bill Maher who couches his ferocious hatred of Muslims in his proclaimed atheism (I am skeptical that he is) and provides that crossover appeal to the liberals and easily influenced low-information types by concealing his hatred in jokes.

There is an underlying ideological infrastructure for Muslim hating that benefits Israel with such groups as Jihad Watch led by extremist bigot Robert Spencer. His group’s work was a huge influence on Norwegian mass-murderer Anders Breivik who in 2011 gunned down 69 people in cold blood, most of them teenagers at an isolated youth camp. The pro-Israeli anti-Muslim industry thrives in America and is covered in detail in reports like the Center for American Progress’s “Fear Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America”, as well as Public Eye’s “Manufacturing the Muslim Menace” and anti-Muslim groups are also tracked by the Southern Policy Law Center.

The tentacles of the right-wing Israeli octopus may be slithering throughout America but the head of the beast lies within the land that Netanyahu has poisoned as surely as Hitler did in Germany.

 photo Willing_Executioners_by_Daniel_Goldhagen_cover_zpsb99b578d.jpgOne of history’s greatest ironies is that the country which was created post WW II as a refuge from persecution and genocide has come to mimic Nazi Germany in so many ways today. The theft of the land from the Palestinians and their abhorrent refusal to not honor the will of God – who of course gave it to Israel if one is prone to believe all of that religious horseshit (I am an atheist) ensured that there would always be a plague upon the land of resentment and the oppression of those who dare to challenge the divine mandate. The great mythology of a chosen people always will lead to violence, persecution and ultimately slaughter. Nazi soldiers embarked on their epic spree of conquest under the banner of “Gott Mit Uns” as an underlying foundation of Aryan supremacy. To a lesser (at least to this point) expression of a God given superiority is that highly potent intoxicant brew of “American exceptionalism” which so many a neoconservative have sipped from the poisoned chalice of our own imminent damnation. Once a people takes upon itself the mantle of holy providence all who are deemed to be inferior or “untermensch” as the Palestinians are seen to be, are legitimate targets for extermination.

The degree to which eliminationist language and dogma have gripped Israel under the rule of the crazed Netanyahu regime is startling and not only can you read it in the writings of the aforementioned propagandists but it has taken control of the very souls of the people there. Take for example the glee that some Israelis took when they dragged out their chairs and refreshments upon a spot of high ground to cheer as Bibi’s bombs blew up innocent women and children in Gaza. I excerpt the following from a story in The Guardian entitled “Israelis gather on hillsides to watch and cheer as military drops bombs on Gaza”:

As the sun begins to sink over the Mediterranean, groups of Israelis gather each evening on hilltops close to the Gaza border to cheer, whoop and whistle as bombs rain down on people in a hellish warzone a few miles away.

Old sofas, garden chairs, battered car seats and upturned crates provide seating for the spectators. On one hilltop, a swing has been attached to the branches of a pine tree, allowing its occupant to sway gently in the breeze. Some bring bottles of beer or soft drinks and snacks.

On Saturday, a group of men huddle around a shisha pipe. Nearly all hold up smartphones to record the explosions or to pose grinning, perhaps with thumbs up, for selfies against a backdrop of black smoke.

It is a jolly good show as directed by Netanyahu and underwritten by Uncle Scam courtesy of the American taxpayer playing out under the protection of the Iron Dome sphere of protection, a “great achievement” as Bibi calls it. Such a system only serves to put an exclamation point on the ethnic cleansing operations in Gaza in that Israel is able to conduct it’s cowardly attacks with complete impunity.

The viewing of the carnage in Gaza as entertainment,like a sporting event or the cheap thrill of reality television here in The Homeland is an perfect example of the transformation of the oppressed into the oppressor. The people in Gaza have no chance or if they do it is about as much as the occupants of the Warsaw Ghetto had before the order was given to send in the goons. The acceptance of the Palestinian people as sub-humans and the bloodlust evident in a large portion of the Israeli population is eerily similar to that of rank and file Germans when the Jews of Europe were the hunted. In a 1996 book written by American Daniel Goldhagen entitled “Hitler’s Willing Executioners” the author examined the complicity of ordinary Germans in the Nazi genocide. Such an effort to dehumanize and eradicate a people from the planet doesn’t take place in a vacuum, the society which perpetrates it must itself be one debauched by the most evil final evolution of racism so as to accept it if not to actually provide the impetus for it to occur.

Goldhagen wrote:

For what developments would a comprehensive explanation of the Holocaust have to account? For the extermination of the Jews to occur, four principal things were necessary:

1. The Nazis – that is, the leadership, specifically Hitler – had to decide to undertake the extermination.
2. They had to gain control over the Jews, namely over the territory in which they resided.
3. They had to organize the extermination and devote to it sufficient resources.
4. They had to induce a large number of people to carry out the killings.

Could just as easily be applicable to Gaza and other ongoing extremist Israeli actions by simply changing out a couple of words.

1. The Israelis – that is, the leadership, specifically Netanyahu – had to decide to undertake the extermination.
2. They had to gain control over the Palestinians, namely over the territory in which they resided.
3. They had to organize the extermination and devote to it sufficient resources.
4. They had to induce a large number of people to carry out the killings.

The book and author were vilified by some for daring to suggest that the “final solution” could not have occurred were it not for the saturation level of anti-Semitic hatred within the German culture. Max Blumenthal is drawing much vitriol for his “Goliath” Life and Loathing in Greater Israel” which serves as the bookend of Goldhagen’s work. The racism and hate have now come full circle and the one thing that extremist right-wing Zionists and their U.S. based fifth-column hate even more than they hate the Palestinian people is the truth. That he has caught as much hell from the so-called left shows that how deeply that the U.S. establishment is complicit in the ongoing genocide. Even the liberal hero Senator Elizabeth Warren is in the Israel amen choir as journalist Glenn Greenwald points out in his column at The Intercept entitled “Elizabeth Warren Finally Speaks on Israel/Gaza Sounds Like Netanyahu”. Warren’s comments should serve warning that she, like Obama, is a Judas.

Blumenthal continues to deliver that truth, spraying it like holy water upon vampires. While Netanyahu was exploiting the tragic murder of three Jewish boys to whip the Israeli’s into a lynch mob frenzy with all of the skill of a seasoned KKK grand dragon, Blumenthal wrote the piece calling bullshit on the dog and pony show. I excerpt the following from his piece at Electronic Intifada entitled “Netanyahu government knew teens were dead as it whipped up racist frenzy”:

From the moment three Israeli teens were reported missing last month, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the country’s military-intelligence apparatus suppressed the flow of information to the general public. Through a toxic blend of propaganda, subterfuge and incitement, they inflamed a precarious situation, manipulating Israelis into supporting their agenda until they made an utterly avoidable nightmare inevitable. Israeli police, intelligence officials and Netanyahu knew within hours of the kidnapping and murder of the three teens that they had been killed. And they knew who the prime suspects were less than a day after the kidnapping was reported.

Rather than reveal these details to the public, Israel’s Shin Bet intelligence agency imposed a gag order on the national media, barring news outlets from reporting that the teens had almost certainly been killed, and forbidding them from revealing the identities of their suspected killers. The Shin Bet even lied to the parents of the kidnapped teens, deceiving them into believing their sons were alive. Instead of mounting a limited action to capture the suspected perpetrators and retrieve the teens’ bodies, Netanyahu staged an aggressive international public relations campaign, demanding sympathy and outrage from world leaders, who were also given the impression that the missing teens were still alive. Meanwhile, Israel’s armed forces rampaged throughout the occupied West Bank and bombarded the Gaza Strip in a campaign of collective punishment deceptively marketed to Israelis and the world as a rescue mission.

It is an outstanding piece and an expose of the complete depravity of Netanyahu who is growing ever more desperate and dangerous and now is facing complaints from members of the Israeli government that his kill crazy rampage in Gaza wasn’t sufficiently violent to slake their thirst for blood. Bibi unleashed the demons with his cynical use of the murders to trigger pogroms and revenge killings like the torture-murder of that 16 year old boy who was beaten, forced to drink gasoline and burned alive by hooligans incited by his demagoguery. Then the military action began and the body count began to multiply as Bibi slithered around American media outlets with his despicable comments about “telegenically dead” bodies implying that the parents in Gaza actually wanted to have their children ripped to shreds by flechette shells. The star-spangled sheep eat it up too, so clueless that they are as to the true nature of our “special relationship” with God’s chosen land and their willful ignorance, apathy and own racism make them complicit in Netanyahu’s ongoing destruction of the Palestinian people. Things won’t change either now that the next two and a quarter years in the USA! USA! USA! will be dominated by the elections and which candidate will be the best one to enable the genocide and if old Sheldon Adelson gets some serious bang for his bucks will vow to nuke Tehran before that miserable, corrupt Hebrew toad croaks.

The eliminationist rhetoric will continue to ooze from every pore of Israel’s American propaganda apparatus and once mingled with our own red, white and blue strain of racism mutate into something very potent and even more explosive, the fear-mongering over the latest bad ass Islamic bogeyman army ISIS will serve as an accelerant. That such vile sentiment enjoys the forum that it does in the “mainstream media” is evident as to the barrenness of America’s own soul and the embracing of the worst elements of Zionist racism is a fornication between parasites. America is already well on on the way to that great scrap heap of ruined empires that are strewn throughout history no amount of providence nor exceptionalism will stop it. Hubris and an acceptance of enforcing a false superiority at the end of a gun or whatever the weapon of the times may be never works and when aligning policy and public sentiment behind a murderous monster and world class villain like Benjamin Netanyahu the demise will only be hastened.

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desart. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

-Percy Bysshe Shelley “Ozymandius”

EU is US puppet on Russia sanctions due to a crisis in Ukraine that the USA itself started

http://www.presstv.com/detail/2014/08/31/377176/paul-craig-roberts-eu-is-us-puppet/

Paul Craig Roberts, former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury, has criticized the European Union’s newly proposed sanctions on Russia over the crisis in Ukraine, calling the 28 member-state bloc a US “puppet.”

“It’s really up to [Russian President Vladimir] Putin what happens. It’s not up to the EU. The EU is a puppet state of the United States. They’re being hurt by the sanctions that Washington has forced Europeans to impose on Russia,” he said in an interview with Press TV.

“The main hurt is only Europeans, not Russians,” he added.

The European Union announced on Saturday that it would impose further sanctions against Moscow over the incursion of Russian troops into Ukraine.

“The whole question is whether the people in Washington [are] trying to control Russia or going to lose their European Empire. That’s the question before the world, will Europe sacrifice itself in order to serve American pressure against Russia, Craig Roberts explained. “I doubt it. I don’t think that’s possible. The government, the leaders might, but not the people.”

“The German people I don’t think will stand for this when they see all the hurt coming to Germany because the idiot in Washington is trying to hurt Russia. It’s not going to happen, so what we are about to witness in my view is a collapse of American power,” he continued. 

On Sunday, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy said the bloc’s heads of state tasked their executive body to “urgently” prepare tougher economic sanctions that could be adopted within a week.

He said the EU “stands ready to take further significant steps in light of the evolution of the situation on the ground.” “Everybody is fully aware that we have to act quickly.”

White House National Security spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden welcomed the EU’s move.

“We welcome the European Council’s consensus today to show strong support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and to prepare further sanctions for consideration in coming days,” she said.

The United States and the European Union have already imposed asset freezes and travel bans on senior Russian officials.

Washington and its allies accuse Moscow of supporting pro-Russian forces fighting against the Kiev government in eastern Ukraine, but the Kremlin denies the allegations.

You Can’t Understand ISIS If You Don’t Know the History of Wahhabism in Saudi Arabia

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13930607000789

You Can't Understand ISIS If You Don't Know the History of Wahhabism in Saudi Arabia

TEHRAN (FNA)- The dramatic arrival of Da’ish (ISIS) on the stage of Iraq has shocked many in the West. Many have been perplexed — and horrified — by its violence and its evident magnetism for Sunni youth. But more than this, they find Saudi Arabia’s ambivalence in the face of this manifestation both troubling and inexplicable, wondering, “Don’t the Saudis understand that ISIS threatens them, too?”

It appears — even now — that Saudi Arabia’s ruling elite is divided. Some applaud that ISIS is fighting Iranian Shiite “fire” with Sunni “fire”; that a new Sunni state is taking shape at the very heart of what they regard as a historical Sunni patrimony; and they are drawn by Da’ish’s strict Salafist ideology.

Other Saudis are more fearful, and recall the history of the revolt against Abd-al Aziz by the Wahhabist Ikhwan (Disclaimer: this Ikhwan has nothing to do with the Muslim Brotherhood Ikhwan — please note, all further references hereafter are to the Wahhabist Ikhwan, and not to the Muslim Brotherhood Ikhwan), but which nearly imploded Wahhabism and the al-Saud in the late 1920s.

Many Saudis are deeply disturbed by the radical doctrines of Da’ish (ISIS) — and are beginning to question some aspects of Saudi Arabia’s direction and discourse.

THE SAUDI DUALITY

Saudi Arabia’s internal discord and tensions over ISIS can only be understood by grasping the inherent (and persisting) duality that lies at the core of the Kingdom’s doctrinal makeup and its historical origins.

One dominant strand to the Saudi identity pertains directly to Muhammad ibn ʿAbd al-Wahhab (the founder of Wahhabism), and the use to which his radical, exclusionist puritanism was put by Ibn Saud. (The latter was then no more than a minor leader — amongst many — of continually sparring and raiding Bedouin tribes in the baking and desperately poor deserts of the Nejd.)

The second strand to this perplexing duality, relates precisely to King Abd-al Aziz’s subsequent shift towards statehood in the 1920s: his curbing of Ikhwani violence (in order to have diplomatic standing as a nation-state with Britain and America); his institutionalization of the original Wahhabist impulse — and the subsequent seizing of the opportunely surging petrodollar spigot in the 1970s, to channel the volatile Ikhwani current away from home towards export — by diffusing a cultural revolution, rather than violent revolution throughout the Muslim world.

But this “cultural revolution” was no docile reformism. It was a revolution based on Abd al-Wahhab’s Jacobin-like hatred for the putrescence and deviationism that he perceived all about him — hence his call to purge Islam of all its heresies and idolatries.

MUSLIM IMPOSTORS

The American author and journalist, Steven Coll, has written how this austere and censorious disciple of the 14th century scholar Ibn Taymiyyah, Abd al-Wahhab, despised “the decorous, arty, tobacco smoking, hashish imbibing, drum pounding Egyptian and Ottoman nobility who travelled across Arabia to pray at Mecca.”

In Abd al-Wahhab’s view, these were not Muslims; they were imposters masquerading as Muslims. Nor, indeed, did he find the behavior of local Bedouin Arabs much better. They aggravated Abd al-Wahhab by their honoring of saints, by their erecting of tombstones, and their “superstition” (e.g. revering graves or places that were deemed particularly imbued with the divine).

All this behavior, Abd al-Wahhab denounced as bida — forbidden by God.

Like Taymiyyah before him, Abd al-Wahhab believed that the period of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)’s stay in Medina was the ideal of Muslim society (the “best of times”), to which all Muslims should aspire to emulate (this, essentially, is Salafism).

Taymiyyah had declared war on Shi’ism, Sufism and Greek philosophy. He spoke out, too against visiting the grave of the prophet and the celebration of his birthday, declaring that all such behavior represented mere imitation of the Christian worship of Jesus as God (i.e. idolatry). Abd al-Wahhab assimilated all this earlier teaching, stating that “any doubt or hesitation” on the part of a believer in respect to his or her acknowledging this particular interpretation of Islam should “deprive a man of immunity of his property and his life.”

One of the main tenets of Abd al-Wahhab’s doctrine has become the key idea of takfir. Under the takfiri doctrine, Abd al-Wahhab and his followers could deem fellow Muslims infidels should they engage in activities that in any way could be said to encroach on the sovereignty of the absolute Authority (that is, the King). Abd al-Wahhab denounced all Muslims who honored the dead, saints, or angels. He held that such sentiments detracted from the complete subservience one must feel towards God, and only God. Wahhabi Islam thus bans any prayer to saints and dead loved ones, pilgrimages to tombs and special mosques, religious festivals celebrating saints, the honoring of the Muslim Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)’s birthday, and even prohibits the use of gravestones when burying the dead.

“Those who would not conform to this view should be killed, their wives and daughters violated, and their possessions confiscated, he wrote. “

Abd al-Wahhab demanded conformity — a conformity that was to be demonstrated in physical and tangible ways. He argued that all Muslims must individually pledge their allegiance to a single Muslim leader (a Caliph, if there were one). Those who would not conform to this view should be killed, their wives and daughters violated, and their possessions confiscated, he wrote. The list of apostates meriting death included the Shiite, Sufis and other Muslim denominations, whom Abd al-Wahhab did not consider to be Muslim at all.

There is nothing here that separates Wahhabism from ISIS. The rift would emerge only later: from the subsequent institutionalization of Muhammad ibn ʿAbd al-Wahhab’s doctrine of “One Ruler, One Authority, One Mosque” — these three pillars being taken respectively to refer to the Saudi king, the absolute authority of official Wahhabism, and its control of “the word” (i.e. the mosque).

It is this rift — the ISIS denial of these three pillars on which the whole of Sunni authority presently rests — makes ISIS, which in all other respects conforms to Wahhabism, a deep threat to Saudi Arabia.

BRIEF HISTORY 1741- 1818

Abd al-Wahhab’s advocacy of these ultra radical views inevitably led to his expulsion from his own town — and in 1741, after some wanderings, he found refuge under the protection of Ibn Saud and his tribe. What Ibn Saud perceived in Abd al-Wahhab’s novel teaching was the means to overturn Arab tradition and convention. It was a path to seizing power.

“Their strategy — like that of ISIS today — was to bring the peoples whom they conquered into submission. They aimed to instill fear. “

Ibn Saud’s clan, seizing on Abd al-Wahhab’s doctrine, now could do what they always did, which was raiding neighboring villages and robbing them of their possessions. Only now they were doing it not within the ambit of Arab tradition, but rather under the banner of jihad. Ibn Saud and Abd al-Wahhab also reintroduced the idea of martyrdom in the name of jihad, as it granted those martyred immediate entry into paradise.

In the beginning, they conquered a few local communities and imposed their rule over them. (The conquered inhabitants were given a limited choice: conversion to Wahhabism or death.) By 1790, the Alliance controlled most of the Arabian Peninsula and repeatedly raided Medina, Syria and Iraq.

Their strategy — like that of ISIS today — was to bring the peoples whom they conquered into submission. They aimed to instill fear. In 1801, the Allies attacked the Holy City of Karbala in Iraq. They massacred thousands of Shiites, including women and children. Many Shiite shrines were destroyed, including the shrine of Imam Hussein, the murdered grandson of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

A British official, Lieutenant Francis Warden, observing the situation at the time, wrote: “They pillaged the whole of it [Karbala], and plundered the Tomb of Hussein… slaying in the course of the day, with circumstances of peculiar cruelty, above five thousand of the inhabitants …”

Osman Ibn Bishr Najdi, the historian of the first Saudi state, wrote that Ibn Saud committed a massacre in Karbala in 1801. He proudly documented that massacre saying, “we took Karbala and slaughtered and took its people (as slaves), then praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, and we do not apologize for that and say: ‘And to the unbelievers: the same treatment.'”

In 1803, Abdul Aziz then entered the Holy City of Mecca, which surrendered under the impact of terror and panic (the same fate was to befall Medina, too). Abd al-Wahhab’s followers demolished historical monuments and all the tombs and shrines in their midst. By the end, they had destroyed centuries of Islamic architecture near the Grand Mosque.

But in November of 1803, a Shiite assassin killed King Abdul Aziz (taking revenge for the massacre at Karbala). His son, Saud bin Abd al Aziz, succeeded him and continued the conquest of Arabia. Ottoman rulers, however, could no longer just sit back and watch as their empire was devoured piece by piece. In 1812, the Ottoman army, composed of Egyptians, pushed the Alliance out from Medina, Jeddah and Mecca. In 1814, Saud bin Abd al Aziz died of fever. His unfortunate son Abdullah bin Saud, however, was taken by the Ottomans to Istanbul, where he was gruesomely executed (a visitor to Istanbul reported seeing him having been humiliated in the streets of Istanbul for three days, then hanged and beheaded, his severed head fired from a canon, and his heart cut out and impaled on his body).

In 1815, Wahhabi forces were crushed by the Egyptians (acting on the Ottoman’s behalf) in a decisive battle. In 1818, the Ottomans captured and destroyed the Wahhabi capital of Dariyah. The first Saudi state was no more. The few remaining Wahhabis withdrew into the desert to regroup, and there they remained, quiescent for most of the 19th century.

HISTORY RETURNS WITH ISIS

It is not hard to understand how the founding of the Islamic State by ISIS in contemporary Iraq might resonate amongst those who recall this history. Indeed, the ethos of 18th century Wahhabism did not just wither in Nejd, but it roared back into life when the Ottoman Empire collapsed amongst the chaos of World War I.

The Al Saud — in this 20th century renaissance — were led by the laconic and politically astute Abd-al Aziz, who, on uniting the fractious Bedouin tribes, launched the Saudi “Ikhwan” in the spirit of Abd-al Wahhab’s and Ibn Saud’s earlier fighting proselytisers.

The Ikhwan was a reincarnation of the early, fierce, semi-independent vanguard movement of committed armed Wahhabist “moralists” who almost had succeeded in seizing Arabia by the early 1800s. In the same manner as earlier, the Ikhwan again succeeded in capturing Mecca, Medina and Jeddah between 1914 and 1926. Abd-al Aziz, however, began to feel his wider interests to be threatened by the revolutionary “Jacobinism” exhibited by the Ikhwan. The Ikhwan revolted — leading to a civil war that lasted until the 1930s, when the King had them put down: he machine-gunned them.

For this king, (Abd-al Aziz), the simple verities of previous decades were eroding. Oil was being discovered in the peninsular. Britain and America were courting Abd-al Aziz, but still were inclined to support Sharif Husain as the only legitimate ruler of Arabia. The Saudis needed to develop a more sophisticated diplomatic posture.

So Wahhabism was forcefully changed from a movement of revolutionary jihad and theological takfiri purification, to a movement of conservative social, political, theological, and religious da’wa (Islamic call) and to justifying the institution that upholds loyalty to the royal Saudi family and the King’s absolute power.

OIL WEALTH SPREAD WAHHABISM

With the advent of the oil bonanza — as the French scholar, Giles Kepel writes, Saudi goals were to “reach out and spread Wahhabism across the Muslim world … to “Wahhabise” Islam, thereby reducing the “multitude of voices within the religion” to a “single creed” — a movement which would transcend national divisions. Billions of dollars were — and continue to be — invested in this manifestation of soft power.

It was this heady mix of billion dollar soft power projection — and the Saudi willingness to manage Sunni Islam both to further America’s interests, as it concomitantly embedded Wahhabism educationally, socially and culturally throughout the lands of Islam — that brought into being a western policy dependency on Saudi Arabia, a dependency that has endured since Abd-al Aziz’s meeting with Roosevelt on a U.S. warship (returning the president from the Yalta Conference) until today.

Westerners looked at the Kingdom and their gaze was taken by the wealth; by the apparent modernization; by the professed leadership of the Islamic world. They chose to presume that the Kingdom was bending to the imperatives of modern life — and that the management of Sunni Islam would bend the Kingdom, too, to modern life.

“On the one hand, ISIS is deeply Wahhabist. On the other hand, it is ultra radical in a different way. It could be seen essentially as a corrective movement to contemporary Wahhabism.”

But the Saudi Ikhwan approach to Islam did not die in the 1930s. It retreated, but it maintained its hold over parts of the system — hence the duality that we observe today in the Saudi attitude towards ISIS.

On the one hand, ISIS is deeply Wahhabist. On the other hand, it is ultra radical in a different way. It could be seen essentially as a corrective movement to contemporary Wahhabism.

ISIS is a “post-Medina” movement: it looks to the actions of the first two Caliphs, rather than the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) himself, as a source of emulation, and it forcefully denies the Saudis’ claim of authority to rule.

As the Saudi monarchy blossomed in the oil age into an ever more inflated institution, the appeal of the Ikhwan message gained ground (despite King Faisal’s modernization campaign). The “Ikhwan approach” enjoyed — and still enjoys — the support of many prominent men and women and sheikhs. In a sense, Osama bin Laden was precisely the representative of a late flowering of this Ikhwani approach.

Today, ISIS’ undermining of the legitimacy of the King’s legitimacy is not seen to be problematic, but rather a return to the true origins of the Saudi-Wahhab project.

In the collaborative management of the region by the Saudis and the West in pursuit of the many western projects (countering socialism, Ba’athism, Nasserism, Soviet and Iranian influence), western politicians have highlighted their chosen reading of Saudi Arabia (wealth, modernization and influence), but they chose to ignore the Wahhabist impulse.

After all, the more radical Islamist movements were perceived by Western intelligence services as being more effective in toppling the USSR in Afghanistan — and in combatting out-of-favor Middle Eastern leaders and states.

Why should we be surprised then, that from Prince Bandar’s Saudi-Western mandate to manage the insurgency in Syria against President Assad should have emerged a neo-Ikhwan type of violent, fear-inducing vanguard movement: ISIS? And why should we be surprised — knowing a little about Wahhabism — that “moderate” insurgents in Syria would become rarer than a mythical unicorn? Why should we have imagined that radical Wahhabism would create moderates? Or why could we imagine that a doctrine of “One leader, One authority, One mosque: submit to it, or be killed” could ever ultimately lead to moderation or tolerance?

Or, perhaps, we never imagined.

By Alastair Crooke

Alastair Crooke has been a former MI-6 agent, and is the Author of ‘Resistance: The Essence of Islamic Revolution’.

This commentary first appeared on Huffington Post.

Russian troops nowhere to be seen, even worse some Ukrainian troops opening talking about regime change in Kiev

Russian soldiers are nowhere to be seen in city captured by rebels, but locals insist that the Kremlin’s troops led the advance

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/30/tension-ukrainian-towns-menaced-russian-forces

A Pro-Russia rebel walks at the Novoazovsk border crossing point, in eastern Ukraine.

A Pro-Russia rebel walks at the Novoazovsk border crossing point, in eastern Ukraine. Photograph: Sergei Grits/AP

As Ukraine‘s president told an EU summit in Brussels that there were now “thousands” of Russian troops operating in his country, they had all but disappeared from view in the eastern town that has been the flashpoint for invasion claims.

Novoazovsk, not far from the border with Russia and miles away from other areas controlled by separatists, was captured by an armoured column on Wednesday evening that appeared to cross from Russia, and there were several reported sightings of similar “little green men” to those who appeared prior to the annexation of Crimea: well-equipped troops without insignia who appeared to be from elite Russian units immediately stood out from the ragtag fighters of the separatist militias.

On Saturday, however, there was no sign of these troops in or around the town, as rebel fighters settled in and the green men apparently retreated. It left locals, the Ukrainian government and world leaders wondering whether the seizure of Novoazovsk had been part of a major new offensive that could see Russian-backed forces take the city of Mariupol and perhaps even open a land corridor to Crimea, or whether it was more of a poker move by the Russians and the rebels, an attempt to create panic before retreating to their previous positions.

The rebel commander in Novoazovsk – who goes by the nickname Swat – said his men were Ukrainians, mostly from the Luhansk region, and that he was a former lieutenant-colonel in the Ukrainian special forces. Despite Ukrainian assertions that Russian artillery has been firing across the border to support the rebels, Swat said his men had not received any military support from Russia. He said they had moved south along the border, but not through Russian territory, to capture Novoazovsk.

However, local people said the initial assault had involved a different kind of soldier. A woman named Raisa said Russian troops, not rebels, had first taken the city. “My former husband was in the army for 26 years. I know soldiers when I see them. These were regular troops … from Russia,” she said, as she milked her two cows along the roadside.

On Saturday, grey-haired men in camouflage were working on a rusty tank flying the red-and-blue flag of Novorossiya, a historical area along the southern coast of Ukraine conquered by the Russian empire, which rebels say they are trying to resurrect as an independent government. The area encompassed a huge swath of Ukraine, reaching as far west as Odessa.

Kremlin-watchers noted one point in particular in Vladimir Putin’s statements in recent days. Not only did the Russian president say the Ukrainian army tactics were reminiscent of the Nazis, but he also referred in an address to “the militias of Novorossiya”, causing concern that the Kremlin’s strategy now involves creating a kind of “breakaway state” encompassing a large area of south and east Ukraine. This would also give Russia a land corridor to Crimea which, since annexation by Russia, has only been accessible to mainland Russia by aircraft or by a ferry crossing across a congested strait.

Putin and Russia have called for an immediate ceasefire in the region, and for the Ukrainian president, Petro Poroshenko, to negotiate with the pro-Russia leaders in the east, but Kiev has branded them “terrorists” and wants to re-establish control over the areas rather than let a de facto independent statelet spring up. Since peace talks between Putin and Poroshenko yielded little concrete progress on Tuesday, the Russian activity on the ground appears to have intensified.

European politicians have struggled to formulate a response to Putin’s actions in Ukraine, with no appetite for a military confrontation, but several rounds of sanctions have apparently only strengthening the Kremlin’s resolve. Nevertheless a number of politicians have said that a further round of sanctions will be in the offing if Russian policy does not change.

“What’s happening in Ukraine is so serious that the European Council will be obliged to react by increasing the level of sanctions if things remain as they are,” said the French president, François Hollande, on Saturday as he arrived for an EU summit in Brussels.

Poroshenko was given a warm welcome at the summit and at a news conference claimed that there were now hundreds of tanks and thousands of troops from Russia inside Ukraine. He gave mixed signals over hopes for de-escalation and said he expected to see progress towards peace in the coming weeks, but added that the need for peace was so great because “we are too close to the border from where it would be no return to the peace plan”.

The immediate question is whether an assault on Mariupol is forthcoming, or whether the talk of it is psychological warfare from the Russian side.

“We will help the locals start a rebellion and then move forward,” said Swat in Novoazovsk, claiming that rebel forces had virtually surrounded Mariupol and were waiting to attack. They would create a corridor to his home city of Odessa, he said. However, a drive along the roads outside Mariupol proved repeated rumours that rebel forces had surrounded the city to be false on Saturday.

As on previous days, at the edge of Mariupol on the road from Novoazovsk, soldiers and volunteers dug trenches near a Ukrainian military checkpoint. The defences, however, seemed more psychological than physical, with a nearby sliproad left unguarded and no visible major defence force in the area.

Columns of Ukrainian armoured personnel carriers and other military vehicles drove into Mariupol on Friday and Saturday, but it remained unclear whether the Ukrainians would actually fight for the city if there was a well-coordinated advance. A commander of the Azov battalion, a volunteer outfit helping the Ukrainian army defend the city, said he had information from Ukrainian security services that between five and 10 “curators” from Russian military intelligence were in Mariupol to coordinate pro-Russia forces in the event that a takeover of the city did take place.

Mariupol has its share of Ukrainian patriots, as was demonstrated in a pro-Kiev rally earlier in the week. It also has a number of separatist supporters, many of whom turned out to back independence for the so-called Donetsk People’s Republic in a referendum in May, when the town was under separatist control.

But by now most residents, as in much of the region, are suspicious of both Kiev and the separatists and simply want the uncertainty and violence to stop. “It might seem calm here, but in our hearts we are not calm,” said Artur Kovtun, a 47-year-old resident of Mariupol. “Everyone is tired of this. A lot of people here support the separatists. We wanted to be part of Russia earlier in the year, but now we just want this stress to end.”

COURSE OF THE CONFLICT

22 February President Viktor Yanukovych flees Kiev after snipers kill protesters in central Kiev.

27-8 February Gunmen seize buildings in Crimean capital Simferopol. In coming weeks more “little green men” appear; Moscow denies they are Russian troops.

18 March Putin signs bill to absorb Crimea into Russia, two days after a referendum gives alleged 97% backing for it.

7 April Government buildings seized in eastern Ukraine.

15 April Kiev announces the start of an “anti-terrorist operation” against pro-Russia elements in the east.

2 May Clashes in Odessa between pro-Russia and pro-Ukraine groups leave 42 people dead, most of them pro-Russia activists burned to death when the trade union building where they had barricaded themselves caught fire. Russia describes the deaths as a massacre.

11 May Donetsk and Luhansk regions hold referendums and declare independence, but recognition from Moscow is not forthcoming.

25 May Petro Poroshenko elected Ukraine’s president.

26-7 May Battle at Donetsk airport kills at least 40 separatists dead.

5 July Rebels abandon stronghold of Slavyansk after fierce fighting. Ukrainian forces make gains, but at the cost of mounting civilian casualties.

17 July MH17 airliner shot down over east Ukraine, apparently by rebels.

30 July Fresh round of EU sanctions against Russia.

26 August Ukraine releases video of Russian paratroopers. Russia says they entered Ukraine “by accident”.

27-28 August Rebels take town of Novoazovsk.

Seized laptop reveals ISIL terrorists planning more chemical attacks in Syria

http://en.alalam.ir/news/1627842

A screenshot of material found on the computer. The files appear to be videos of speeches by ISIL clerics.
A screenshot of material found on the computer. The files appear to be videos of speeches by ISIL clerics.
A laptop recovered from properties of the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) terrorist group in Syria reveals a series of secret plans including instructions on how to develop biological weapons, Syrian opposition sources say.

Rival militants seized the laptop during a raid on an ISIL hideout in Idlib Province close to Turkey’s border.

A commander in a rival militant group in Syria has told American magazine, Foreign Policy, that the computer belonging to a Tunisian militant, contained thousands of secret files in French, English, and Arabic.

It also contained lessons on disguise, bomb-making, stealing cars as well as ideological justifications for militancy, the commander added.

Western media reports say one of the documents included instructions on how to develop biological weapons and how to weaponize the bubonic plague from infected animals.

“The advantage of biological weapons is that they do not cost a lot of money, while the human casualties can be huge,” the 19-page document in Arabic stated.

The laptop also includes a 26-page fatwa (decree) by ISIL terrorist leaders on the use of weapons of mass destruction.

The Syrian government has reported of use of chemical weapons by foreign-sponsored militants three times in Syria– once near Aleppo, a second time near Damascus, and another time in Homs in recent years.

UN investigators said in May 2013 that they had found testimonies from victims and medical staff that show militants had used the nerve agent sarin in Syria.

Senior Syrian officials say Damascus is “genuinely worried” that Syria’s enemies could provide chemical weapons to armed groups “and then claim they had been used by the Syrian government.”

The Syria crisis began in March 2011, and many people, including large numbers of soldiers and security personnel, have been killed in the violence.

ISIL terrorists have been behind many of the deadly bomb attacks targeting both civilians and government institutions across Syria over the past three years.

What Happened in Ferguson

Foreword: I am so busy with the events in the Ukraine that I barely had the time to follow the events in Ferguson so I will readily admit that I have no opinion about it.  I do have quite a few opinions about race-relations in the USA, including some rather politically incorrect ones (I don’t consider US Blacks either as either Africans or Americans, for example).  While I lived in Washington DC (from 1986-1991) at the time of Marion Barry and I often found myself on the receiving end of Black racism and yet I consider Malcolm X the greatest “American” (in quotation because he never considered himself “American” and neither do I) in the history of the USA and one of my personal heroes.  I now  live in the South (though one could argue that Florida is culturally north of the Carolinas) where I have African and local Black friends tell me very interesting stories about how it feels to be Black and have your car pulled over by a cop.  I find the issue of race relations in the USA absolutely fascinating if tragic, but right now is not the time for me to deal with this issue.  But one day, if somebody is interested, I might.  Right now, the Russian Team has requested articles about the events in Ferguson and one of the best ones was written up by Nora.  Now, full disclosure and warning: I consider Nora as a personal friend and a wise and kind lady, don’t you even think of posting something ugly if you disagree with her.  You are more than welcome to criticize and disagree, but make darn sure it is substantive and respectful towards Nora. Second, while race is most definitely an issue in the USA, any racist post will immediately go to the trash.  Criticize Blacks or Whites as a social group if you want, or White or Black organizations, but do not use any argument which implies that a member of race X has his/her free will restricted by his ethnicity or which lumps all the individual people into one. Deal?

The Saker
——-
What Happened in Ferguson
Setting The Stage

To set the stage for what happened in Ferguson, it would probably be helpful to understand a bit about how the deck has been stacked against people of color in the United States.  Although slavery officially ended in 1863, it was ultimately replaced in the South by not only the state-sponsored terrorism of Jim Crow but unofficial re-enslavement via both the sharecropping system and arrest on trumped-up charges leading to unpaid labor on prison chain gangs. The Civil Rights Era brought an end to the worst of this but the War on Drugs ensured that African Americans continue to be arrested and imprisoned at more than twice the rate of whites for similar offenses even though drug usage is about the same for both groups.  And outrageously underpaid prison labor in for-profit private prisons is now replacing what little remains of American manufacturing.

Richard Nixon augmented white resentment in the way he “resolved” the implementation of Brown vs. The Board, the landmark 1954 Supreme Court decision on school desegregation, because he shrewdly realized that working-class white Democrats, North and South, would happily become Republicans if the Republican Party “took their side” on the issue.  The end result of that was that re-segregation occurred and black schools are now once again under-funded, with poorer facilities, out-of-date and sometimes even *no* books (!), and generally much worse teachers.  I.e., not much has really changed at all in terms of education either.
Worse yet, although blacks once lived in all areas of this country, beginning in the third quarter of the 19th century, they were herded into the cities and literally forbidden to be in many towns after dark.  And the parts of the cities they live in generally have far worse services — less frequent garbage pick-up or snow-removal, streets and street lights not well-maintained — but still very high rents, especially considering the quality of the housing.  Ostensibly these problems were to have ended with the passage of various Civil Rights laws but again, not really.  Redlining is an ongoing process by which blacks are prevented from buying homes in certain areas by making it far more difficult to obtain mortgages and setting higher interest rates for them than whites with similar qualifications.  Given that home ownership is generally the primary source of wealth for most American families, this arena too has been closed off to most African Americans.  And finally, jobs: given two candidates equally qualified for a position, the African American is significantly less likely to be hired.
White attitudes meanwhile have not shown much improvement either.  This is in part due to Nixon’s Southern Strategy for re-empowering the Republican Party, and in part due to Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush’s deliberate race-baiting (and vote-getting) strategies, including deliberately trumping up white fears of black violence and lying about the extent of welfare fraud by blacks.  But the Democrats, frightened at their loss of white voters, weren’t much better:  Bill Clinton’s Welfare Reform hurt a lot of innocent people, white and black, because he too wanted to look tough on black crime — which had actually been declining — while ignoring the serious and far more expensive crimes of wealthy whites.  Another factor here is due to the relative isolation of whites from blacks:  it’s far easier to remain afraid of people you never get to know, especially if the media commentators you trust keep filling you with stereotypes instead of telling the truth.  And make no mistake about it:  the most prejudiced whites are also the most frightened whites.  Sadly, it is not only to the benefit of the Republican Party to keep them that way but, because few blacks vote Republican, the Democratic Party really doesn’t have to work very hard to get the black vote  — so they don’t much bother either.  So it’s a truly lose-lose situation there too.
Now for the police.  Racial profiling and police brutality have always been a fact of life for people of color in this country.  This stems in part from the fact that traditionally the people recruited to be policemen have been quite likely to view blacks as inherently inferior, dangerous and more likely to be criminal.  Gun use is deeply ingrained in American culture, and those who hold such racist views are particularly likely to see their guns as essential for personal safety and the only real way to maintain public order.  It should also be noted that fears of a black insurrection as well as the desire to conserve one’s human property led quite early to the formation of armed paramilitary slave patrols throughout the South, a primary reason for both the inclusion and peculiar wording of the Second Amendment. http://truth-out.org/news/item/13890-the-second-amendment-was-ratified-to-preserve-slavery The growth of the American gun lobby over the past 25 years has both fed upon and reinforced these views but in point of fact, parents in the black community have traditionally had to sit their pre-teen children down for the rite of passage known as “The Talk”, in which they’re given very specific instructions on how to behave with sufficient meekness and submission to, hopefully, remain alive.
However, the over-militarization of local police — up to and including official instructions to consider and respond to non-violent protesters as terrorists — is a disturbing new trend. The Department of Homeland Security has been a huge profit-making venture for the Military Industrial Complex, both in terms of providing taxpayer-funded grants to local police and fire departments ostensibly to protect us from terror attacks but in fact to ensure that items no longer needed for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq could be sold somewhere.  So now the tiniest rural fire departments have armoured vehicles they can hardly afford to fuel, and local police have the latest in military equipment and Mossad training inculcating in them a genuine terror of the population — i.e., us — they are paid with our tax dollars to protect.
A commenter on the English version of this blog who lives in a Washington DC suburb recently called her local police department about a possible fraud case which ordinarily would have required simple fact-finding by a single detective.  Instead, a fully-armed five-man SWAT team arrived at the wrong address, ready to fire.  These events are increasingly common across the board, with innocent people of every age and color and sometimes even their pets being brutalized and/or murdered at traffic stops, in clearly non-violent situations in their own homes when simple medical or other assistance had been requested or again the police burst into the wrong home, and/or the simply because the policeman did not feel his (often quite arbitrary and illegal) orders were being sufficiently obeyed. There is also considerable  evidence to suggest poor screening for excess violence or poor behavioral controls, previous job infractions of this sort and/or drug and alcohol abuse among applicants for police work.
Add in a “normal” quantity of southern racism (also quite present in the North, of course, reinvigorated by Sarah Palin and deliberately amplified by various rightwing media in efforts to get Republicans out to vote), a large group of African Americans recently moved from the inner city to one of the few areas they were begrudgingly allowed to enter, and a town whose second-largest source of operating revenues comes from the fines and fees paid by African Americans disproportionately targeted for traffic stops and other low level offenses  http://www.democracynow.org/2014/8/27/is_ferguson_feeding_on_the_poor  and yes, Ferguson was a recipe for disaster.  The event itself though, while hardly atypical, is in some ways less interesting than its aftermath, which provides almost a Rohrschach test for America’s people, media and governance at this point in time.

The Event

The evidence on which all parties agree is that Michael Brown was an unarmed 18-year-old highly regarded by his teachers who wanted to start his own business and had no criminal record.  He was shot and killed by Ferguson, MO police officer Darren Wilson while walking with a friend to visit his grandmother at approximately noon on Sunday, August 9, 2014, just two days before he was due to start college.  There is no police video of the shooting although an audiotape of several shots appears legitimate and many eyewitness tweets and a later video of Brown’s body are also on record; nevertheless, many details of the incident remain unclear. What can be stated without dispute is that Wilson stopped the two teens and ordered them with rather questionable legality to get off the street and onto the sidewalk; accounts differ as to how hostile this confrontation was or whether Brown remained on the street, was pulled by Wilson towards or into the car or was at some point actually in the car assaulting Wilson as later claimed by the police. It is fairly well established, however, that Wilson was seated in his car when he first shot at Brown and his friend through the open car window but missed as they fled.  He then got out of his car, fired again at Brown and continued to shoot multiple rounds after the teen turned around with his hands up, ultimately killing him with a shot in the head as he fell. What happened next is like plate tectonics or watching a Greek tragedy unfold.
The Aftermath
Not trusting the hostile and overwhelmingly white power structure in Ferguson, Brown’s family requested a private autopsy by a former NYC forensic pathologist; his results showed nine gunshot wounds (four on the right arm, three on the head and two on the chest) suggesting he had been shot at least six times though not from very close range since there was no gunshot residue on the body.  http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/18/us/michael-brown-autopsy-shows-he-was-shot-at-least-6-times.html?_r=0   However, the full findings from the official autopsy by the St. Louis County medical examiner’s office have not been made public, so the presence of any residue on Brown’s clothing or in Wilson’s car remains uncertain. The Justice Department was also asked to conduct an autopsy, though it is highly doubtful that additional information can be obtained.
Michael Brown’s body lay in the street for four hours afterwards at police insistence, Wilson’s name was not revealed for another week and although the Ferguson Police Department filed an incident report on 8/15 alleging that Brown and his friend had committed a robbery just before he was killed, it took the department another full week to file even a highly-abbreviated report of his murder. It was acknowledged, however, that Wilson had no knowledge of the robbery at the time he ordered Brown off the street.
Meanwhile, when the police finally allowed people to access the site of his death, Brown’s family and other residents placed flowers and candles over the bloodstains on the street.  At that point, in gestures of contempt quite familiar to people who had lived through Jim Crow, one policeman let his dog urinate on the memorial and others re-blocked the street from cars and then deliberately drove their cars over the candles and flowers, scattering the petals, ruining the memorial and deeply horrifying the already shocked, grieving people.  http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/08/ferguson-st-louis-police-tactics-dogs-michael-brown
Over the next few nights the unarmed mourners and protesters grew increasingly restless and perhaps a dozen of them began looting and vandalizing and set one business on fire. Accustomed to enforced deference but at this point genuinely afraid they might have a riot on their hands, the police refused to acknowledge any culpability, attempted with questionable veracity to place the entire blame on Brown, and responded to the protesters according to the Mossad training provided their chief.  This included riot gear, SWAT team tactics and helicopters the first night, followed by tear gas, wooden pellets, rubber bullets, smoke bombs, and flash grenades. The results were about as predicted, the governor intervened, steps were taken to calm things down, more people protested, the situation gained national attention, the media took their accustomed positions along predetermined political fault lines, the police over-reacted again, the intensity ebbed and flowed, the National Guard were called in, many people were roughed up, threatened and arrested, including several journalists, and statements by the Obama administration appeared more interested in the violence perpetrated by the protesters than against Michael Brown.  Things finally began to calm down after his funeral.

The Fault Lines

Every single part of this tragedy, up to and including the poor training, judgment and violent behavior by some of the police, was utterly predictable; so too was the sensationalized and highly-slanted media coverage, the location, content and intensity of the public outcry on both sides of the Left-Right political divide with the typical uncaring indifference in the middle, and the far greater amount of money collected on behalf of Darren Wilson than Michael Brown.  http://www.ksdk.com/story/homepage/2014/08/23/cash-raised-for-mo-cop-surpasses-brown-donations/14506401/  The intensity of the protesters’ response is likewise hardly surprising given the destruction of a simple memorial to a murdered teenager whose body was not yet cold, performed deliberately by members of the same organization as the man who had killed him under highly questionable circumstances.
It is equally important to recognize that what happened in Ferguson was hardly an anomaly:  not a single thing happened there that hasn’t happened in many places in this country many times before.  In fact, taking a longer view, the biggest question is why the media chose to give it so much coverage.  And the answer to that most likely has more to do with their own increasingly precarious finances and the current state of our foreign rather than domestic affairs and their resulting assessment once again that the public really needs a strong diversion and the inculcation of yet more fear.
Nevertheless, just as people all over the world are becoming increasingly aware of the Anglo-Zionist Empire’s true role in taking over and/or destroying so many other countries, the ugly difference between myth and reality in American life — essentially unchanged since our very beginning — has been revealed for everyone to see.  The sad truth, however, is that the vast majority of Americans remain locked in to their own propaganda-induced preconceptions, and while efforts continue to be made to address the underlying issues of police militarization, brutality and unequal treatment before the law, the likelihood of genuine improvement in any of these areas is extremely low.
A Word About Sources
Please feel free to ask if you have any questions.  For more information on any of this, I will be happy to provide all sorts of URLS but for a deep and nuanced view of the African American experience I cannot more highly recommend a writer and blogger named Ta-Nehisi Coates.  He sees things clearly, thinks things through exquisitely well, and is a genuinely superb writer.  http://www.theatlantic.com/ta-nehisi-coates/  Another good resource on this issue and others affecting African Americans is Professor Gerald Horne, interviewed here in a six-part series with transcripts:  http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=12258   Alexander Reid Ross also provides an interesting and informative view of other developments in Ferguson that have an impact on this case, http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/08/28/notes-on-ferguson/  And finally, The Color Of Change, http://colorofchange.org/ and Black Is Back Coalition  http://www.blackisbackcoalition.org/2014/08/27/national-march-on-ferguson-saturday-aug-30th/ are both good resources for anyone interested in the determinedly measured response by the African American community and its supporters to resolving these issues.

Are You A Passive Supporter Of Racially-Motivated Killing, Ethnic Cleansing And War-Crimes?

By Stuart Sterzel, London, August 2014

“Long live the White Races, and down with the Semite-led subhumans and interracial contacts”.

Look at that slogan. Should this be regarded as a great and laudable sentiment or call-to-action?
If you think so, then, then here are some equally laudable sentiments, provided by the same person and organisation:

“The historic mission of our nation in this critical moment is to lead the White Races of the world in a final crusade for their survival. A crusade against the Semite-led subhumans”.

and

“Punish severely sexual perversions and any interracial contacts that lead to the extinction of the white man”.

And

“Prepare for further expansion and to struggle for the liberation of the entire White Race from the domination of the internationalist speculative capital”.

If you don’t like or agree with these sentiments, then you are obviously not a citizen of any European Union country, or any NATO country, or of the United States of America.

That is because the person who said this – on his own behalf, and on behalf of his organisation “Patriots of Ukraine” – is the commander of the unit which is currently fighting under the banner of the glorious and heroic “Azov Battalion”. The Azov battalion is – along with many other identically-orientated “Special Units” of the “National Guard” of Ukraine (established by the “Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine”) – currently fighting to “liberate” Eastern Ukraine from “Semites” and “Semite-led subhumans”; with the full encouragement of the Ukrainian government.

The Ukrainian government, and all of the many organisations – such as the “Socialist-National Assembly”, the “Patriots of Ukraine”, the “Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists”, the “Tryzub”, the “Swoboda” and other such organisations – have taken over the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Internal Affairs and other Key Ministries within the current post-coup government of Ukraine. They are also providing the personnel from within their political party structures to form the “Special Units” of the “National Guard” – tasked with liquidating the (in their words) Semites and Semite-led subhumans in Eastern Ukraine. In this “historic mission” of theirs, they are being completely supported to carry it out with impunity by the member countries of the European Union and NATO, and the United States of America.

In fact, it is only the financial, diplomatic and military support provided by the European Union, NATO and the United States of America that has enabled these views to prevail with impunity in Ukraine, and enabled corresponding acts to be perpetrated with impunity in Eastern Ukraine by those who hold these views, against the people that they regard as “Semites” (aka Ukrainian citizens who have the Jewish faith) and “Semite-led subhumans” (aka Ukrainian citizens who are of Russian ethnicity, and all Asians, Africans, Latin Americans, Arabic people and “non-White races”); as well as against those who engage in “interracial contacts”.

It is therefore worth noting that if you are a citizen of any European Union or NATO country, or of the United States of America; seeing as these are democratic countries where the governments are elected by you to represent and carry out the will of their people (i.e. your will), and where they are funded by you to carry out your will through the money paid in taxes by their people (i.e. your money); it is, in fact, you who is facilitating, condoning, supporting and encouraging these views.

Consequently, if you are a citizen of the European Union, a NATO country or the United States of America, the question is, therefore – do you feel satisfied, or proud of yourself, for your association with these views?

Moreover, the people whose speech and views are being facilitated, supported and condoned don’t just talk. They translate their words into deeds and actions – rapidly, efficiently and thoroughly.

That is why in the last two months, far more “Semites and Semite-led subhumans” (including very many women and children) have been killed in Eastern Ukraine through indiscriminate shelling and bombing – including by ballistic missiles – or burnt alive, beaten to death, shot or starved, than were killed in Gaza over the corresponding period. Moreover, over seven hundred thousand have fled to refugee camps in the Russian Federation, while over one hundred thousand more are internally displaced within the Donbass region of South Eastern Ukraine. All this has been done most efficiently and premeditatedly, by the people that the EU and NATO country governments, and the government of the USA, are facilitating, supporting, condoning and paying for.

To illustrate the level of impunity which this support has now led the persons implementing this “solution” to their “problem” enjoy, please see here a recent public quote from the Prime Minister of Ukraine; who was installed in his post not according to the will of the Ukrainian people, but rather according to the will of the USA’s Department of State:

“They lost their lives because they defended men and women, children and the elderly who found themselves in a situation facing a threat to be killed by invaders and sponsored by them subhumans. First, we will commemorate the heroes by wiping out those who killed them and then by cleaning our land from the evil”.

Arseniy Yatsenyuk – Prime Minister of Ukraine

According to him, the heroes of the Azov Battalion and other “Special Units” of the “National Guard” will be honoured, and the subhumans will be wiped out, after which the land will be cleaned of the subhumans’ evil. Although the written record of his public comment was re-written to change “subhuman” to “inhuman” to cater for the required public narrative, a screenshot of the posting of his original speech is here. In any event, as that speech was broadcast live to the “subhuman” inhabitants of Eastern Ukraine, they all got it first-hand themselves, and they therefore know what awaits them – if the government in Kiev has its their way.

It seems that once the “heroic” wiping out of the subhumans has been completed in the main, the post-coup Ukrainian government also has a plan in place for how to deal with the ones who’re still there. Here it is:

“There will be a thorough filtration of people. There will be special filtration measures put in place. We will filter out people, including women, who are linked to separatism, who were committing crimes on Ukrainian territory. Crimes related to terrorist activities. We have a lot of information about this, and we have a formidable framework to combat this. Various power structures will carry out this operation.
Mykhailo Koval – Minister of Defence of Ukraine

Read this quote carefully. Especially look at the phrase “Special ‘Filtration’ Activities”. One wonders what the Ukrainian government ministers and their advisors from other countries who formulated this plan had in mind. Perhaps if they closed their eyes and thought about it they could catch the faint sound of freight trains moving off into the dark of the night, travelling to parts unknown; full to the brim with an unusual cargo. It would not be the first time that something like this has happened in Ukraine.

The current post-coup government in Ukraine clearly has a problem with people that it perceives to be “Semite-led subhumans”, and – according to Ukrainian political leaders – this problem must be attended to. In stirring up a section of their (presumably non-subhuman) population through rhetoric, it seems that they have driven many people to start “helping” with this, and helping most thoroughly. As such, their will will be done – in fact, it is currently being done as you read this. As for the survivors, it seems that they’ll just be ethnically cleansed from the land (to make the land “clean”, it seems).

As with all thorough plans, it also seems that the current Ukrainian government has already worked out how to recompense the people who are cleaning the land of the “evil of the subhumans”. Here it is:

“Land parcels will be given out for free to the servicemen of the Armed Forces and other military formations, as well as to the employees of Interior Ministry and the Security Service that are defending territorial integrity and sovereignty of the country”.
Land Agency of Ukraine

Clearly, according to the current Ukrainian government, the land, possessions and businesses of the subhumans will be taken over and given away to the “heroic” personnel of the “Special Units” of the “National Guard” for free. It seems that in the “New Ukraine”, those classified as subhumans have no rights, so ownership and title don’t apply to them. Not anyway in the “New Europe” being forged within Ukraine.

If any Ukrainian speaks out against these acts too loudly, they are, more and more, just grabbed off the street and “disappeared”. Also, if any Ukrainian wants to broadcast anything other than the required narrative on Television, such a person will be assaulted and forced to resign (in this case, being assaulted and forced to resign by the Member of Parliament of Ukraine responsible for “Free Speech”). Similarly, if any Ukrainian wants to speak out against this in the Ukrainian Parliament, they will similarly be silenced by force applied in the parliament building (and then have their political party banned).

The iron-clad priority of the current Ukrainian government – and their supporters – appears to be that at all costs they must project the required narrative to outsiders in order to justify their conduct. The required narrative is that the prevailing situation is a war between Russia and Ukraine, not that it is a civil war inside Ukraine between Ukrainian citizens – with the Ukrainian “Special Units”, “National Guard” and army killing and ethnically cleansing the “subhuman” category of the Ukrainian civilian population in the Donbass Region of South-Eastern Ukraine.

As for the so-called “subhuman” section of the population trapped inside South Eastern Ukraine, it is not as though these acts are being carried out against them in silence. They are being done openly. However, although the people trapped inside the surrounded cities are crying out for help most publicly, nobody’s listening. It seems to be that the narrative has been accepted that all 8 million of these “subhumans” are “terrorists”, so their money can be taken from their bank accounts and from the money due for their pensions, insurance won’t pay for their destroyed houses, businesses or possessions – and whatever’s left can just be confiscated, and their water, electricity and gas supplies can be cut.

Moreover, it seems as though these people’s residential houses can be rocketed and shelled and bombed with impunity, and their windows can be blown out and roofs destroyed. In that part of Europe this can force people to – when winter, and minus 40 degree centigrade weather arrives (soon) – have to risk freezing to death or otherwise be forced to leave their homes.

Also, there are, apparently, no consequences incurred by the current Ukrainian government, their “National Guard” units, or their supporters for the daily contraventions of multiple Ukrainian and International Laws, including:
Ukrainian Criminal Laws and its Constitution, or
European Laws, or
International Laws, or
International War Crimes Laws, or
International Law against the Bombing of Civilians, or
Customary International Humanitarian Law, or
the Geneva Conventions, or
the law on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, or
International Refugee Law, or
the Laws on Forced Evictions and Forced Displacement, or
the Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid, r
The Convention against Torture, or
Hate Crime Laws, or multiple International Human Rights Treaties, or
Multiple other laws relating to Siege / Immunity of Civilians / Starvation / Blocking of Humanitarian Aid, or Destruction and Seizure of Property, or Wanton Destruction, or Crimes Against Humanity, or Corporate War Crimes, or Hate Speech, etc, etc, etc.
Even though more than enough documentary, photographic and video material already exists for criminal charges to be brought by any person or organisation, from any jurisdiction, for contravention of numerous of these laws and conventions against:
any private persons, or
any organisation leaders or members, or
any military leaders or soldiers, or
any private military company or organisation directors, leaders or members, or
any political party leaders or members, or
any government leaders or members,
from any country involved with these acts directly or indirectly,
for either their acts or their failures to act,
or against any person (or spokesperson) for aiding, abetting or encouraging such acts, or concealing information on such acts,
and although there is no statute of limitations for when these charges can be brought;
Total impunity for the members of the current Ukrainian government, the members of the “National Guard” and their supporters – in Ukraine and abroad – seems to be the order of the day. For now.

This is especially as very few foreign journalists are reporting from within the encircled cities or areas or the border of the Russian Federation; but also primarily because the “solution” being applied to this “subhuman terrorist” problem is being applied with the support and protection of the governments of the EU and NATO countries, and the USA. As a result, there is a total absence of balance when it comes to reporting of statements or to reporting of rebuttals from parties being mentioned in the media.

Other than this, all statements from the International Committee of the Red Cross, the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe, and any other party that doesn’t follow the required narrative appear to being kept out of the primary media in many countries. Other events that are contrary to the required narrative also appear to be left out of primary media reports in some countries.

In amongst this situation have also occurred some very irregular events which do not and could not pass muster if measured against any yardstick of probity or decency whatsoever.

Moreover, in early 2014, Ukraine was teetering on the edge of bankruptcy due to default on tens-of-billions of dollars of debt. Where has that all suddenly disappeared to? Also, the requirement to pay back any of the other tens-of-billions of dollars in loans from multiple international creditors, or to pay for gas supplies, or any other normal requirement for any normal country in any normal situation seems to either have mysteriously disappeared, or be able to be totally ignored by the current government – primarily, it seems, due to external protection provided to Ukraine’s current government by the governments of the EU and NATO countries, and the USA.

Similarly, despite Ukraine’s financial bankruptcy, there is, however, suddenly and just as mysteriously – from thin air, it seems – a tremendous amount of money available for military spending. This is specifically for the current Ukrainian government to launch the very expensive and ongoing military operation against the eight million “subhuman terrorists”. This includes money for the brand-new military equipment used by the “Special Units” of the “National Guard” to kill the terrorists, much of which equipment does not come from Ukraine.
Perhaps it is time – as the “Watergate” saying went – to “follow the money”, and see where it leads to.

For all of this, the citizens of EU and NATO countries, and of the USA – whose governments are covering for, or guaranteeing the cost of, this land-cleaning of the evil of subhuman terrorists – are morally co-responsible if you allow your governments to continue this policy of support, condoning or financing of these actions.

Therefore, look again at the headline of this article. Look at the quotes, in bold. Systematically review the documents and videos located at hyperlinks like this one in this article. Take your time and do it thoroughly. If they leave you cold, or if you agree with what is being done, well then – stand aside and let it happen, because then, you will never again have to concern yourself about it.

If, however, you are not in agreement with what is going on – whether you are a citizen of an EU or NATO country, the USA, or for that matter, any country – and it does not leave you cold, then there is some action required. You see, disagreeing but doing nothing is akin to consent. If you don’t agree with what is being done, you have to actually do something to stop it. In doing so, you should take note of this very important point.

If you are a citizen of a democratic country, it is you who is the ruler. Your government is not elected to rule you, to tell you what to do or to do as it pleases. No indeed.

Your government – comprising citizens who are no better or worse than you, and no more or less worthy than you – is elected to serve you. To administer the affairs of your country on your behalf, according to your wishes. As such, you can compel them to accede to your will.

Regrettably, many of them lose sight of this fact once they are elected, and think they are kings or queens, so you may have to remind them of who, in fact, works for who.

One way to do this is through the use of the law.

Just as a company director can face legal consequences for reckless endangerment of a company, so can a political leader face legal consequences for reckless endangerment of a country or of people’s lives. Just as a company director can face legal consequences for making false and misleading statements, so can a political leader. When a company director takes a company in a direction that the majority of its shareholders disagrees with, they can band together and force him out – and the same can be done with political leaders and citizens or voters. There are many avenues of recourse, and many intelligent and committed law firms and legal minds that know how to do this.

If this avenue is not open to you, then make your voice heard in any way that is possible. Doing anything – as long as it is non-violent and geared towards achieving positive change – is preferable to doing nothing.

Let your political leaders and governments know your thoughts. Make them comply with your will – for if you do not, they will condone or support the carrying out of these acts in your name.

Moreover, because this situation is being ignored or condoned by governments, and because many ordinary people think that the condoning of this situation by their governments is perverse, they are taking matters into their own hands, and what is happening in that region of Europe is starting to spread its tentacles far and wide – and very rapidly too.

Therefore, take note that as sure as night follows day, if you allow the Law of the Jungle to reign supreme in Ukraine today, you run the risk that tomorrow, when you open your front door, the jungle could be on your own doorstep.

A cold wind is blowing through Europe. It carries on it the sound of voices from the past – gone but not forgotten. Voices of people who cried out for help – but no help ever came. Mingling in are the sound of new voices, also crying out for help – but their cries too go unanswered.

Pay heed to this wind, and to the voices that it carries; for if you do not, this wind can become a storm; and if it does, you will find, when that storm arrives, that tomorrow belongs to you.

The writer is an executive at a multinational company based in Europe. Prior to his business career, he provided Strategic Geopolitical Consulting services to national and federal governments in Eastern and Western Europe and the CIS, as well as to international organisations. He is the author of geopolitical articles which are published in the press internationally, and is also a guest commentator on geopolitical affairs for international television stations. He has been a delegate and guest speaker at United Nations conferences. He has chaired a Humanitarian Organisation in Europe and a Military Veterans Organisation in South Africa as pro-bono activities. Prior to his career in Strategic Geopolitical Consulting, he was a Special Forces Operator and member of the Directorate of Special Tasks of Military Intelligence, and participated in the Angolan War, where he took part in combat operations against USSR and USSR-proxy forces during the Cold War.
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POSTED BY VINEYARDSAKER: AT 18:12

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