Sayyed Nasrallah Warns US: War on Iran to Burn Region, Ready to Open Precise Missiles Manufacturing Factories

Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah delivered on Friday a speech in which he tackled various regional topics, on top of which is US administration’s “Deal of century.”

Addressing thousands of Resistance supporters who gathered to commemorate Al-Quds Day, Sayyed Nasrallah recalled that “today, 40 years have passed since late Imam Khomeini announced Al-Quds International Day.”

“The enemies have bet that people forget Al-Quds, but people’s sympathy is growing,” he added, noting that “attempts to disrupt Al-Quds Day and turn it to a sectarian issue have failed.”

On the event,  His Eminence stopped at and the mass million marches in Iran. “The Iranian people are demonstrating in solidarity with Al-Quds, not as [US President Donald] Trump says against the Iranian regime.”

Stressing that “Al-Quds Day rallies in Iran form a message to Washington and all the governments in the region,” he went on to highlight that it’s the nation’s to topple the deal of the century [the deal of shame] because it is a deal of falsehood, loss of Palestinian as well as the Arab and Islamic rights.”

In this context, Sayyed Nasrallah assured that we can thwart the deal of the century . “The axis of resistance stands to prevent the success of this deal and scheme,” he mentioned.

“We have strong hope as peoples in the region that we can prevent the crime of the deal of the century,” His Eminence added, pointing out that “in 2011, there was an American attempt to end the Palestinian cause and to only give the Palestinians some demands.”

He further warned that “as the American administration, the Zionist entity and some Arab regimes are working to implement the deal of the century.”

According to Sayyed Nasrallah: “Trump’s deal of the century  is unjust and it is our duty to oppose it.”

“In return there is a strong axis standing to prevent the implementation of this deal,” His Eminence stated, noting that “The goal of the deal of century is to end any talk about Al-Quds, the Gaza Strip and the refugees.”

Hailing the heroic Yemeni people that poured into streets despite the aggression and siege to commemorate Al-Quds Day, Sayyed Nasrallah underscored that “Al-Quds Day rallies in Bahrain confirm that the Bahraini people and scholars are innocent of the Deal of the Century’s workshop [to be hosted by Al-Khalifa regime.”

On the same level , the Resistance Leader highlighted that Washington has been able to absorb the Arab popular revolutions, divert it from its course towards the wrong direction.”

“ There is a supposed strategic environment that Trump and [“Israe;I PM] Netanyahu are to impose the deal of the century and end the Palestine,” he emphasized.

Sayyed Nasrallah went on to accuse “all those who interfered in the Arab Spring
from seeking to take from it a rotten fruit [that is the deal of the century.

According to His Eminence, “the American bet on the tiresome of the peoples in region to impose the deal of the  century is a wrong diagnosis.”

Sayyed Nasrallah once again reiterated that “The resistance axis today is stronger than ever before.”

Elsewhere in his speech, Sayyed Nasrallah clarified that The Palestinian resistance today is stronger than ever and is approaching the equation of bombing “Tel Aviv” in response to attacking Gaza.”

He further revealed that “The resistance in Gaza is capable of controlling large areas of occupied Palestine in any future war.”

Regarding Syria, His Eminence explained that “Syria today has overcome the scheme against it and will regain its strength and ability.”

In addition, he said: “Iraq today returned to its regional role and has a capable, struggling and influential people.”

““Israel” fears the resistance in Lebanon and  “Israeli” officials continue to talk about the state of deterrence and the resistance capabilities,” he added pointing out that ““Israel” fears missiles from Lebanon, Gaza, Syria and claims the existence of rockets in Iraq.”

Commenting on the recent summits held in Saudi Arabia, Hezbollah Secretary General viewed that “the Arab summits that are taking place today reflect the Saudi distress from the inability and failure in face of the Yemeni people.”

Sayyed Nasrallah also elaborated that “Trump could not protect Saudi Arabia.”

“The Saudi funds and weapons did not benefit it in its war on Yemen and its king appealed to Arab, Islamic and Gulf summits to protect him,” he explained.

However, His Eminence vowed that “All the summits will not be able to protect Saudi Arabia in its war against the oppressed people in Yemen because they are the people of faith, wisdom and sacrifice.”

“The Lebanese delegation’s stance at Mecca’s Arab Summit is rejected and condemned and it does not conform to the government’s policy statement,” he said.

On the regional scene, the Resistance Leader listed a serious of factual developments.

“Iran is the greatest regional power in our region and a real force with its power,” he added, pointing out that “ in 2019,“Israel” is weaker than ever.

Sayyed Nasrallah further stressed that ““Israel’s” prestige is demising and the strength of its ground army has retreated as it moved to the defensive position.”

“The “Israeli” internal front is exposed in face of the resistance rockets,” the Resistance Leader declared.

As he cautioned that “some American tools in the region are unable to protect itself and some regimes are concerned of implementing the deal of the century.”

Sayyed Nasrallah highlighted that “The US is no longer the same as before 20 years after it sent its troops to the region and came out defeated.”

According to His Eminence, “The current US administration is anxious to go to new wars.”

Sayyed Nasrallah further assured that “Today the axis of resistance and the rejectionist front to the Deal of the century  are strong and capable of confronting this deal.”

He underscored that “the pressure on Iran today is because all the resistance forces resorted to it to save Palestine.”

On another level, Sayyed Nasrallah quoted the Leader of the Islamic Revolution, His Eminence Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei who ruled out a possible war with the US.

“One reason that there’s no war is that Iran is strong, otherwise the war could have been launched,” he added, lamenting the fact that “Bolton, Netanyahu and others from the Gulf are inciting war against Iran.”

“The other reason that there is no war is that the CIA knows that a war on Iran will set the region on fire and won’t stop behind its borders,” His Eminence vowed , noting that “ The war against Iran did not happen because Iran is strong and has a great leadership despite all this incitement.”

In addition, Sayyed Nasrallah stated that “Trump knows that when the region is on fire, a barrel of oil will be $200 or $300.”

“The US knows well that any war on Iran will not remain confined to Iran’s borders. The entire region will burn, leading to all US forces and interests in the region being annihilated,” he threatened.

On another level, Hezbollah Secretary General urged US defenders to go and study America’s internal front. “On the socioeconomic levels; according to a USDA report, 40 million Americans are food-insecure. This is the America that wants to take over the world.”

Moreover, His Eminence vowed that “Any “Israeli” attack on any target linked to the resistance in Lebanon, we Hezbollah, will respond to it quickly, directly and strongly. “Israel” is afraid of us and keeps talking about our rocket capabilities. We will be able to take over large areas in the next war.”

“Missiles are in fact made manufactured in Yemen and in Lebanon, they have the technology, but the Saudi mind can’t absorb the idea that a Muslim country can make its own missiles,” he added, stating that “It’s none of the US business whether we have precision rockets and facilities to produce them or not.”

Unveiling that “We [Hezbollah] have in Lebanon accurate missiles that reach all the targets in “Israel” and  are capable of changing the face of the region,” Sayyed Nasrallah sent  the Americans a sounding message:

“If the Americans continue to incite on us over manufacturing missiles, we shall establish facilities and factories for manufacturing precision rockets,” he stated, warning that “the US is taking advantage of border demarcation to benefit “Israel”, target Hezbollah’s precision missiles arsenal.”

In conclusion, Sayyed Nasrallah said: “ Our axis is strong and our front is strong. We made sacrifices. We came out stronger and more present. We are able to topple the deal of the century.”

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Imam Khamenei Labels Negotiation with US as ‘Total Loss’

By Staff, Agencies

Leader of the Islamic Revolution His Eminence Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei ruled out the possibility of talks between Tehran and Washington, saying such negotiations will be “fruitless”, “harmful”, and “a total loss”.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran will absolutely not sit for talks with America … because first, it bears no fruit and second, it is harmful,” Imam Khamenei said in a meeting with a number of university professors, elites and researchers in Tehran on Wednesday.

Imam Khamenei referred to negotiation as a tactic used by Americans to complement their strategy of pressure. “This is actually not negotiation; it’s rather a means for picking the fruits of pressure.”

The only way to counter this trick, His Eminence said, is to utilize the means of pressure available for use against Americans. “If they are used properly, the Americans will either stop or decrease pressures.”

However, Imam Khamenei further warned against being deceived by the US plot, saying that the Islamic Republic must use the leverage at its disposal to counter the US’ pressures; otherwise, being deceived into negotiation would be a “total loss”.

Imam Khamenei said Iran’s leverage is not military unlike what the anti-Iran propaganda says, even though that option is not off the table in case of necessity.

His Eminence referred to the recent decision by the Supreme National Security Council to reduce some of Iran’s commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal with the world, and described it as one of the means that Iran can use against the US’ pressures.

“The leverage Iran has used for now is the recent SNSC decision, but we won’t remain at this level forever, and in the next phase, if necessary, we’ll use other means of pressure,” Imam Khamenei warned.

Back on May 8, 2019, on the anniversary of the US’ withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran said that it will halt implementing some terms of the nuclear deal until parties to the deal other than US take action to mitigate the negative impacts of US decision in May 2018 to withdraw from the agreement.

The Islamic Republic considers that other parties to the JCPOA, particularly the E3 – France, Britain, and Germany – have failed so far to compensate for the US withdrawal and help Iran reap the economic dividends of the 2015 nuclear deal.

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AL-QUDS BRIGADES REVEAL FIRST EVER VIDEO SHOWING DRONE ATTACK ON ISRAELI TANK, APC

South Front

30.05.2019

For the first time ever, the military wing of the Islamic Jihad Movement, the al-Quds Brigades, released a video showing its fighters targeting Israeli military vehicles around the Palestinian Gaza Strip with an armed drone.

The video, which was first broadcasted by the Lebanese al-Mayadeen TV in the noon of May 30, shows an armed drone targeting a Merkava IV main battle tank and an Achzarit armored personnel carrier (APC) of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF). The attack occurred during the recent Gaza–Israel clashes.

“Your fortresses don’t stand before us,” a message in Arabic and Hebrew in the video reads.

The drone used in the attack appears to be a small-size quadcopter, similar to the famous DJI Phantom. The drone dropped small projectiles, similar to submunitions usually used in cluster rockets and bombs.

Al-Quds Brigades Reveal First Ever Video Showing Drone Attack On Israeli Tank, APC
Click to see full-size image

ISIS was the first to arm commercially bought drones and use them in combat. The battle of Mosul in Iraq witnessed an extensive use of such drones with the Iraqi military losing several vehicles to drone attacks.

While the terrorist group was the first to use armed drones, Hezbollah was the first to arm them with submunitions. In late 2016, the Lebanese armed group attacked several militants’ positions near the city of Aleppo with drones armed with Chinese-made MZD2 submunitions.

Al-Quds Brigades Reveal First Ever Video Showing Drone Attack On Israeli Tank, APCClick to see full-size image

The accuracy of the armed drone used by the al-Quds Brigades appears to be poor. However, the acquisition of such weapon remains a threat to the Israeli military, especially that it can be improved.

More on the topic:

Weekly report on israel’s terrorism on Palestinians (23 May – 29 May 2019)

PCHR Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations (23 – 29 May 2019)

Israeli forces continued with systematic crimes, in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), for the week of 23 – 29 May, 2019.

Israeli forces continued to use excessive force against peaceful protestors in the Gaza Strip. 11 Palestinian civilians, including 3 children, a paramedic, and a journalist, were injured. A Palestinian child was wounded in the West Bank.

Shooting:

 

  • In the Gaza Strip, the Israeli forces continued to use lethal force against the participants in the peaceful protests organized along the Gaza Strip borders, which witnessed the peaceful protests for the 59th week along the eastern and northern border area of the Gaza Strip. They also continued to use force as well during the incursions into the West Bank. In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces wounded 11 civilians, including 3 children, a paramedic, and a journalist, while participating in the Return March. Moreover, 2 Palestinian civilians were wounded after being targeted in the border area of the Gaza Strip. In the West Bank, Israeli forces wounded a Palestinian child.

 

  • In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces wounded 11 civilians, including 3 children, a paramedic and a journalist, while participating in the 59th Friday of the Return March.

 

  • As part of targeting the border areas, on 26 May 2019, Israeli forces opened fire and fired an artillery shell at 2 Palestinian civilians, who were about 250 meters into the east of Um al-Mahd area, east of ‘Abasan al-Jadidah village, east of Khan Younis. As a result, they sustained shrapnel wounds. The injured civilians stayed in the area for an hour after which a number of farmers arrived and transferred them to Gaza European Hospital.

 

  • In the West Bank, Israeli forces wounded a Palestinian child during the reported period.

 

Incursions:

 

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 54 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 7 other incursions into Jerusalem and its suburbs. During those incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 47 Palestinians, including 4 children, from the West Bank, while 25 other civilians, including 8 children and a woman, were arrested from Jerusalem and its suburbs.

 

Israeli authorities continued to create a Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.

 

Despite their claims to provide facilities for Palestinian civilians in Ramadan and allow them to perform prayers in al-Aqsa Mosque yards in occupied Jerusalem’s Old City, Israeli forces continued to impose restrictions on them, including the city residents. During this week, and for the second consecutive week, large forces of Israeli soldiers raided al-Aqsa Mosque after al-‘Isha and al-Taraweeh prayers and forcibly ordered al-Mo’takefeen, who are staying in the al-Aqsa Mosque for a certain number of days to perform prayers, to leave the mosque.

 

Israeli Forces continued their settlement activities, and the settlers continued their attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property

 

  • As part of the Israeli house demolitions and notices, on 23 May 2019, Israeli bulldozers demolished an under-construction house in Khalyil al-Louz area near al-‘Abayyat village, east of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. The house, which is comprised of 40 square meters belongs to a person from Surbaher village in occupied East Jerusalem.

 

  • On 27 May 2019, Israeli forces destroyed an agricultural facility in Shoshahla village near al- Khadir village, south of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. The 40-sqaure-meter agricultural room belongs to Mohamed Ahmed Salah.
  • Settlement activities and attacks by settlers against Palestinian civilians and property

 

Israeli forces’ attacks:

 

  • On Thursday, 23 May 2019, Israeli bulldozers demolished an under-construction house in Khalyil al-Louz area near al-‘Abayyat village, east of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Hasan Barijiyah, Head of the Wall and Settlement Resistance Commission in Bethlehem, said that the Israeli bulldozers moved into Khalyil al-Louz area and demolished an under-construction house, which was comprised of 2 story. The house belongs to a person from Surbaher village in occupied East Jerusalem.

 

  • On Monday, 27 May 2019, Israeli forces destroyed an agricultural facility in Shoshahla village near al- Khadir village, south of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Eyewitnesses said that at approximately 11:00, the Israeli forces accompanied with a bulldozer moved into Shoshahla village. The bulldozer demolished a 40-sqaure-meter agricultural room without a prior warning. The room belongs to Mohamed Ahmed Salah.

 

  • Recommendations to the International Community

 

PCHR warns of the escalating settlement construction in the West Bank, the attempts to legitimize settlement outposts established on Palestinian lands in the West Bank and the continued summary executions of Palestinian civilians under the pretext that they pose a security threat to the Israeli forces. PCHR reminds the international community that thousands of Palestinian civilians have been rendered homeless and lived in caravans under tragic circumstances due to the latest Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip that has been under a tight closure for almost 11 years. PCHR welcomes the UN Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334, which states that settlements are a blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions and calls upon Israel to stop them and not to recognize any demographic change in the oPt since 1967.  PCHR hopes this resolution will pave the way for eliminating the settlement crime and bring to justice those responsible for it. PCHR further reiterates that the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, are still under Israeli occupation in spite of Israel’s unilateral disengagement plan of 2005.  PCHR emphasizes that there is international recognition of Israel’s obligation to respect international human rights instruments and international humanitarian law.  Israel is bound to apply international human rights law and the law of war, sometimes reciprocally and other times in parallel, in a way that achieves the best protection for civilians and remedy for the victims.

  1. PCHR calls upon the international community to respect the Security Council’s Resolution No. 2334 and to ensure that Israel respects it as well, in particular point 5 which obliges Israel not to deal with settlements as if they were part of Israel.
  2. PCHR calls upon the ICC this year to open an investigation into Israeli crimes committed in the oPt, particularly the settlement crimes and the 2014 offensive on the Gaza Strip.
  3. PCHR Calls upon the European Union (EU) and all international bodies to boycott settlements and ban working and investing in them in application of their obligations according to international human rights law and international humanitarian law considering settlements as a war crime.
  4. PCHR calls upon the international community to use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine.
  5. PCHR calls upon the international community and United Nations to take all necessary measures to stop Israeli policies aimed at creating a Jewish demographic majority in Jerusalem and at voiding Palestine from its original inhabitants through deportations and house demolitions as a collective punishment, which violates international humanitarian law, amounting to a crime against humanity.
  6. PCHR calls upon the international community to condemn summary executions carried out by Israeli forces against Palestinians and to pressurize Israel to stop them.
  7. PCHR calls upon the States Parties to the Rome Statute of the ICC to work hard to hold Israeli war criminals accountable.
  8. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfill their obligations under article (1) of the Convention to ensure respect for the Conventions under all circumstances, and under articles (146) and (147) to search for and prosecute those responsible for committing grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions to ensure justice and remedy for Palestinian victims, especially in light of the almost complete denial of justice for them before the Israeli judiciary.
  9. PCHR calls upon the international community to speed up the reconstruction process necessary because of the destruction inflicted by the Israeli offensive on Gaza.
  10. PCHR calls for a prompt intervention to compel the Israeli authorities to lift the closure that obstructs the freedom of movement of goods and 1.8 million civilians that experience unprecedented economic, social, political and cultural hardships due to collective punishment policies and retaliatory action against civilians.
  11. PCHR calls upon the European Union to apply human rights standards embedded in the EU-Israel Association Agreement and to respect its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights when dealing with Israel.
  12. PCHR calls upon the international community, especially states that import Israeli weapons and military services, to meet their moral and legal responsibility not to allow Israel to use the offensive in Gaza to test new weapons and not accept training services based on the field experience in Gaza in order to avoid turning Palestinian civilians in Gaza into testing objects for Israeli weapons and military tactics.
  13. PCHR calls upon the parties to international human rights instruments, especially the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), to pressurize Israel to comply with its provisions in the oPt and to compel it to incorporate the human rights situation in the oPt in its reports submitted to the relevant committees.
  14. PCHR calls upon the EU and international human rights bodies to pressurize the Israeli forces to stop their attacks against Palestinian fishermen and farmers, mainly in the border area.

Fully detailed document available at the official website of the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR).

Trump Tells ’Dumb Lies’ To Attack FBI Campaign Investigation, Comey Says

 

By Staff, Agencies

Former FBI Director James Comey said in an op-ed for The Washington Post that US President Donald Trump tells “dumb lies” to attack the FBI and investigations of his 2016 campaign.

Comey’s comments in the piece, published Tuesday, followed Attorney General William Barr’s review of the beginning of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.

Trump has ordered intelligence agencies to assist Barr in the effort and has given the attorney general declassification authority.

“Go ahead, investigate the investigators, if you must,” Comey wrote.

“When those investigations are over, they will find the work was done appropriately and focused only on discerning the truth of very serious allegations. There was no corruption. There was no treason. There was no attempted coup. Those are lies, and dumb lies at that. There were just good people trying to figure out what was true, under unprecedented circumstances.”

Comey’s statement evoked many of Trump’s repeated critiques of the origin of the Russia investigation, including accusations of treason and abuse of surveillance authority.

Barr has defended the review and said it could prompt rule changes at the FBI.

Relatively, Comey’s op-ed marked his latest public remarks against Trump and top administration officials since his firing in May 2017. He previously wrote that he felt top officials had their souls “eaten” through their work in service to Trump.

Former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, for his part, responded earlier this month to some of Comey’s comments by saying the former FBI director “seems to be acting as a partisan pundit.”

Acting Pentagon Chief Says Iran Is Still a Threat to US Forces

By Staff, Agencies

Acting US War Secretary Patrick Shanahan said Wednesday that the Trump administration’s countermeasures to Iran in the Middle East region so far have not produced lasting changes in Tehran’s behavior, noting that Iran remains an acting threat to US forces.

Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Shanahan said recent US moves, including approval of the deployment of an aircraft carrier, bombers and 1,500 additional troops to the region, have so far succeeded in warding off a specific, looming attack on American forces, but the broader threat from Tehran remains unchallenged.

“I don’t see a change in any behavior. I think the situation … still remains tense. It’s a high-threat environment. The Iranian threat to our forces in the region remains,” he said.

On the same day, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford noted that the US troops sent to Iran are only meant as a show of force and not intended for engagement in direct combat.  He also noted that the order to deploy troops was the next logical step after intelligence concluded that a pattern of moves by the Iranian government signaled a heightened threat against US forces stationed in nearby countries.

“People can question the veracity of the intelligence,” he said. “All I would say is, since that weekend, there have been ships that have been hit with mines, there have been [unmanned aerial vehicle] strikes, there have been rocket strikes in the proximity of the United States Embassy in Iraq. All of that activity has taken place since the 3rd, 4th and the 5th [of May].”

Shanahan told reporters that he also briefed lawmakers on the Iranian threat last week in response to criticism from Democrats that there is no concrete evidence of an Iranian threat, but conceded he was unable to provide a full picture of the situation on the ground.

“I spent a lot of time trying to balance how much can be shared and how much to protect. In a perfect world more is better, but I really need to protect the sources,” he said, adding that “nobody” in the President’s administration “wants a war.”

The Trump administration has taken a belligerent stance on Iran, pulling out of the hard-fought 2015 nuclear deal and imposing sanctions on the oil-rich country. Trump said the rationale is to pressure Iran into a new nuclear deal because the existing agreement has allegedly failed to stop the country from pursuing nuclear weapons development.

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Trade War: China Accuses US of ’Naked Economic Terrorism’

By Staff, Agencies

China accused the United States of “naked economic terrorism” on Thursday as Beijing ramps up the rhetoric in their trade war.

The world’s top two economies are at loggerheads as trade talks have apparently stalled, with US President Donald Trump hiking tariffs on Chinese goods earlier this month and blacklisting telecom giant Huawei.

“We are against the trade war, but we are not afraid of it,” vice foreign minister Zhang Hanhui said at a press briefing to preview President Xi Jinping’s trip to Russia next week.

“This premeditated instigation of a trade conflict is naked economic terrorism, economic chauvinism, and economic bullying,” Zhang said.

He also warned that “there is no winner in a trade war.”

China has hit back with its own tariff increase while state media has suggested that Beijing could stop exports of rare earths to the United States, depriving Washington of a key material to make tech products.

“This trade conflict will also have a serious negative impact on the development and revival of the global economy,” Zhang said.

China and Russia have broad consensus and common interests on the trade war issue, he said.

“China and Russia will certainly strengthen economic and trade cooperation, including cooperation in various fields such as economic and trade investment,” Zhang added.

The Chinese official further stated: “We will certainly respond to various external challenges, do what we have to do, develop our economies, and constantly improve the living standards of our two peoples.”

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It Is Indifference of The Israelis That Is Killing People

By Andre Vltcheck
Source

Israeli wall in Betlehem 0a0a3

In the past, whenever I went to (or more precisely, ‘through’) Israel, it was for some antagonistic purpose: to write about the brutal suppression of the intifada in Gaza or Hebron, to comment on the insanity of the land grab around Bethlehem, or to report from the eerie and de-populated Golan Heights, which Israel occupies against all international rules and the UN resolutions. You name it and I worked there: Shifa Hospital or Rafah Camp in Gaza, ‘Golans’, border with Jordan, Bethlehem.

I used to arrive at Ben Gurion Airport, sleep one night in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem or Haifa, meet my contacts (my left-wing friends), hastily, and in the morning, dash towards the ‘front’, or towards one of the ‘fronts’ that the so-called ‘Jewish State’ sustains for decades at its ‘peripheries’.

But this time I decided to do exactly the opposite.

As it became evident that Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has lost all his restraint and shame, as it has got clear that the United States will take full advantage of his madness, and as I was convinced that Europe as well as most of the Arab countries will do absolutely nothing to defend Palestine, Syria or Iran, being ‘in the neighborhood’ (Egypt), I bought my tickets to Tel Aviv, for just a 48 hour ‘visit’ and for one simple purpose: to observe Israeli citizens, talk to them, and to try to figure out how and what they think and want; how they see the world, and particularly how they perceive the region where they live, fight and kill.

Intifada Gaza 1 copy fcd18

And so, I flew to Israel, from Cairo and via Amman. Once there, for two days I commuted between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in a brand new, fast and elegant double-decker train. I talked to many people, provoking them to describe the conditions in which they have been existing; to describe their political system, and the apartheid which most of them keep upholding through (as they constantly point out – ‘democratic’) elections.

Of course, the more ‘democratic’ Israel really is, the more shameful the state into which it reduces the Palestinians, other Arabs and in fact, the entire region. Israeli citizens are continuously voting in the governments that are locking millions inside the camps. They are electing those who are igniting wars and military conflicts in various countries of the Middle East.

Naturally, if you live in Beirut or Aleppo, it is easy to imagine that all this horror is happening because the Israeli citizens are simply ‘evil’; in fact, a bunch of blood-thirsty Rottweilers who have been let off the leash by their North American masters.

But when one interacts with Israelis, he or she quickly realizes that, bizarrely, this is not the case.

Many Israelis appear to be slightly confused, shy, and introverted.

They are ‘into themselves’. It appears that they ‘don’t give a damn about the world around them’.

The most shocking thing is not their brutality, but their detachment, indifference and selfishness.

But all of this is not ‘because most of them are Jews’, but because they are Europeans.

In fact, very little is known about the fact that most of the non-European Jews living in Israel (those originally from Morocco, Yemen, Ethiopia and elsewhere) are treated like second-class citizens, or even worse.

an Ethiopean Jewish reservist whom is she ready to defend really b2d25

Israel is a European ‘outpost’ in the Middle East. The mindset of most of its inhabitants is predominantly European. Talk to people in Tel Aviv, Haifa, even Beersheba as well as in the non-religious parts of the Jewish neighborhoods of Jerusalem, and you will most likely come to the same conclusion.

The ‘political awareness’ of the white, European Israeli Jews, is precisely on the same level as that of the Europeans, meaning near zero:

The U.K. may have more military bases and outposts abroad than any other country on earth. The British military is involved in several ‘projects’ – military occupations and attempts to overthrow foreign governments. These ‘projects’ are killing millions of innocent people, annually. But go to Tate Modern or the Covent Garden Opera House, or just to one of those countless funky nightclubs in London, and try to engage people in conversations about their nation’s murderous legacy. They will laugh at you, or confront you, or simply would not understand what are you talking about, and why.

Do the same in France, and most likely, the results would be identical. France is involved in the neo-colonialist projects in Africa, and millions of ‘lower humans’ are being ruined in the process. But how many French people know, and if they do, how many of them care, let alone try to stop it. Look at the Yellow Vests: how many of them are demanding justice for the French neo-colonies?

The mindset of Israelis is very similar.

Take Tel Aviv – the biggest city in Israel: it is one of the richest places on earth, with infrastructure better than that in North America or the United Kingdom, with cultural institutions like the Museum of Modern Art, a masterpiece built by the architect Preston Scott Cohen. The green areas of Tel Aviv, public spaces, all this could rank it as one of the most livable cities on earth.

But for whom? At what price to the enslaved, exiled and exploited people of the region?

Does it sound familiar? Like all those museums, cathedrals, parks, public hospitals, universities that Europe constructed on the bones, on the corpses and misery of the Congolese, Indonesian, Indian and other people. All for the benefit of the Europeans, but paid for by the slave labor of “The Others”, as well as by the looted resources of “The Others”.

Talk about all of this in Madrid, Brussels, Berlin, Paris, Amsterdam, Lisbon or London. The chances are, you will not be understood. Chances are, you will get confronted: thrown out of cab or a pub, insulted, or even physically attacked (it happened to me in London, for instance).

Talk about it in Haifa or Tel Aviv, and the outcome would be similar; a bit milder (in Israel there is greater number of self-critical people than in Europe), but those who may disagree with you could be extremely unpleasant, and sometimes even violent.

And then, when all the other arguments are exhausted, the Holocaust would almost certainly be mentioned.

And Holocaust is one word that is, when pronounced, simply supposed to end all arguments and criticism of Israel. It is like a password, to shut everyone up.

The Holocaust is then connected to the exodus of the Jews from Europe to the Middle East, after the end of the WWII. “Millions of Jews were killed, therefore they had full right to move, or to be moved, to the Middle East”, the argument goes.

It is bizarre, and powerful proof of how intellectually obedient and ‘shy’ the Western, as well as the Israeli public, has become.

Mentioning Holocaust should not be ‘the end’: this is precisely where the discussion should begin!

The Holocaust was committed by the Europeans (Germans, but also by several of its allies) against the Jews, the Roma and Communists. Millions of people died atrocious, unimaginably terrible deaths.

And then?

In a typically cynical and sinister British colonialist way, the perpetrators got rewarded, and then new victims created.

Germany got fully rebuilt, while Palestinians (un-people in the British minds), were singled out as those who were supposed to pay for the European crimes.

Why not award the Jews with the entire Bavaria? That’s where Hitler came from. That’s where his early supporters were living. This is where some terrible killings were perpetrated.

Bavaria, Germany, Central Europe, is where millions of Jews felt at home, before the Nazi madness began. For example, the greatest writer of the 20th Century – Franz Kafka: he often described himself as a Czech, of Jewish origin, who wrote in the German language.

Before they realized the gravity and monstrosity of the situation, most of the Jews in Germany simply felt ‘betrayed’. As far as they were concerned, they were Europeans, not any less than that perverted freak Adolf Hitler, or his beer-guzzling buddies.

So, why not Bavaria, as compensation? Why Palestine?

The unpronounced truth has been: because the UK and US wanted that mighty Middle Eastern outpost, and because they wanted a powerful, industrialized Germany again, precisely where it was before and during the war.

Because the Allies knew: in terrible pain, full of outrage, the European Jews would come to Palestine and almost in unison declare: “Never Again!” “We will fight for our survival right now and right here!”

The sad reality was, however, that it was not Arabs, not Palestinians, who burnt the Jewish people in the concentration camps. The Arabs were actually fellow victims, suffering from different horrors – the horrors of European colonialism.

Instead of uniting the two groups of people, two victims, against European racism, colonialism and imperialism, the Brits and others succeeded in ‘dividing and ruling’ them; a horrid imperialist tactic they have been using all over the world, for the long centuries.

Of course, after the horrors of WWII, many Jews went to the Middle East as Communists, or anarchists. They wanted to build a new world. They wanted to turn deserts into gardens, and to live in harmony with the Palestinians and other Arabs, in a wonderful and tolerant state. This dream never came through. Communism in Israel was defeated, and so was internationalism.

Militarism, nationalism and religious extremism (conservative religious parties in Israel are always a political minority, but no government, it appears, can be formed, without taking them into a coalition).

Then came the tsunami of the anti-Communist Soviet Jews, (and those who claimed to be Jews, but often weren’t). Accepting them was clearly a political decision of the Israeli elites – they moved Israel towards the right, and ‘rejuvenated’ “the Israeli struggle for ‘exclusive Jewish rights’, and against the rights of the Arab population. Cynical; tremendously cynical, but it all worked perfectly well – for the nationalists and the conservatives.

For the Palestinians, it was yet another disaster; the end of all hopes.

Like in Europe and North America, the Israeli political landscape has become fully re-defined: extreme right, right, and center-right. The left – Communists, internationalists and real socialists – can only be found in a few avant-garde theatres and at the ‘margins of society’.

So, back to the Israeli life. Its Human Development Index (HDI) is the 22nd highest in the world, above that of France, South Korea and Italy. Not bad, is it?

The question is again – for whom?

The interesting thing was that whenever I tried to discuss Palestine, Golan Heights, Syria, Iran, I encountered no anger. Do the white, European Israelis really hate Palestinians, Arabs, Iranians? My conclusion is: no, they don’t! They don’t, because these people do not exist. You cannot hate what doesn’t exist, can you?

The bombing of Syrians, shooting at Palestinians – it all has become like a video game. Nothing personal – something that ‘has to be done’ in order to preserve privileged status of European Jews. The same as building the settlements.

You know, when I was there, Tel Aviv was obsessed with new electric pushbikes. Bicycle lanes were full of them. Who gives a damn about the Palestinians?

The museums were packed, people waiting in lines for hours for the latest exhibitions. Concerts everywhere. The best stuff. Syria? Screw Syria! Falafel fusion has reached new heights, in countless cafes. Classical musicians were practicing, in front of the public, on grand pianos, at the new train station in Jerusalem; a station so deep that one could have no doubt – it is a posh, high tech nuclear shelter.

classic music at Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem 2f3a3

Another, even newer station will soon be called “Donald Trump”, as a big thank you for moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem.

In Israel, hardly anyone practices religion, yet on Shabbat, the entire country comes to a standstill. And that is just a few hours after those countless pubs, bars and clubs were regurgitating drunkards, until the wee hours.

Iran? Israeli politicians are professionals. They know what the West wants. And they go out of their way to please. Same as the Saudis, great allies of Washington, and secret cohorts of Israel.

After one day, everything began to feel extremely familiar. I couldn’t help it: I felt that I was in Europe. The same cynicism, opportunism, indifference.

“As long as we live well, we will do anything to keep it like that! If millions ‘elsewhere’ have to die for our wellbeing, who cares? Let them die!”

Opera performances, top notch public transportation (German), luxury cars (mostly German), and classical music (big chunk of it, German again). Top European brands at local luxury boutiques. Cute pet dogs in public parks.

Palestinians do not exist. Arabs exist mainly as a nuisance. Non-European Jews are good for cleaning latrines.

Seriously, have you heard about a Moroccan or Yemeni Jew commanding a battalion, giving orders to open fire on Palestinian women and children? Then ask a question: is it really about ‘Jewishness’ or about European colonialist legacy?

Actually… Really familiar, isn’t it? The only difference between the UK or France and Israel, is that the distance between London, Paris and the devastated neo-colonies can be counted by thousands of kilometers. From Tel Aviv to the ruined lives of the Palestinian people, it is often just a few minutes’ drive.

Before the holocaust in Europe, Germans perpetrated their very first holocaust in their colony – in Southwest Africa, what is now called Namibia. They murdered over 85% of the native people there, including the Herero tribe. Almost no one knows about it. I went there to investigate, wrote and published reports.

German doctors like Mengele, those who tortured and experimented on Jews in the concentration camps during WWII, were trained by the doctors who previously murdered and beastly tortured African people.

‘Holocaust-deniers’ hate this information. It totally contradicts their ‘discoveries’ that ‘the Holocaust did not happen’, or that “humiliated Germany, after the unjust peace after WWI, just went ‘overboard’.” No, Germany had proven that it could easily exterminate almost an entire population. But African people do not matter to the Europeans, do they? Holocaust is only what occurred on the European continent (although Gypsies/Roma somehow do not qualify as victims, either. In Czech Republic, extermination camps for Roma have been converted to pig farms, with no monuments). They – non-European victims – do not matter to most of the Israelis, either.

When the Holocaust in Europe began, most of the Jews could not believe that their good neighbors – Germans – could commit such barbarity. They did not know their own history, obviously. Germany and other European countries have been committing holocausts all over the world; on all continents. For centuries. The victims, however, were not white, and so they did not qualify as fellow victims.

After WWII was over, and after (mainly) the Soviet Union defeated the German Nazis, many Jews who survived, went to Palestine. As we mentioned before, the murderers were never really punished. Those who had to pay for the German slaughterhouses, were the innocent Palestinians.

But who were those Jews who arrived first? Most of them were those who at the beginning of WWII ‘could not believe that Germans were “capable of committing such crimes”. Let’s face it; they were Europeans, maybe more European than the French, Italians, Dutch, Czechs or even the Germans.

Like Kissinger, who ended up in the United States, instead of Israel. His “Jewish blood” is totally irrelevant. What matters is his “culture”. And his culture is that of a European colonialist, imperialist bigot!

The suffering apart, European Jews were earlier, before WWII, educated in Europe. Their cultural references were those of the Europeans. Most of them saw Arabs with the same eyes as the Europeans observed Arabs in the late 1940’s. Should I say more?

And now, 64 years after the fall of the Reichstag, Israel is an inseparable part of the “Western civilization”. Which means; it is obsessed with its complex of superiority. It is fully convinced, fanatically, that the only truth is the European and North American truth. It would not hesitate to sacrifice millions of non-Western/non-Jewish lives, for the advancement of their own cause. Justice exists only for the white Jews, as well as for the Europeans, and North Americans.

Israel is not a ‘fascist country’. But it is an apartheid state, the same as the West, which treats the entire planet in an apartheid-style manner. It is what it is. Apartheid is used in order to guarantee a great life for its own people, and to hell with the rest.

Israel is fully integrated into the horrible imperialist adventures of the West, all over the Middle East, in Africa and Kashmir, in the Philippines and many other parts of the world.

And, like in the West, its people know nothing, want to know nothing, care about nothing except themselves.

Vacation in Australia, Thailand or Mexico? It can be discussed for long hours. That matters. But not the lives of conquered and colonized people.

I did not like what I saw and heard in Israel. As I do not like what I see and hear in Amsterdam, Hamburg, Paris or Madrid.

The same self-righteousness, hypocrisy, arrogance and brutality:

“You do it our way, or we will break your legs. We can bomb your cities, steal your land, but you shoot back at us, and we will bomb you back to the Stone Age. Why? Because, we simple can, because, we are part of that omnipotent Western world. Because you know what we can do if you start defending yourself! Because you are scared, frightened into submission. And above all: because our people are only ones who matter.”

Yes, this is the way the colonies were controlled, first by the Europeans and then by the United States. Israel learned; it learned quickly. From the victims, people can swiftly convert themselves into victimizers.

The Laws of any country are clear on this: Just because many of your family members and relatives were brutally murdered, does not give you any right to start beating, robbing and killing totally different groups of people.

Just because you were victim of racism, does not justify your colonialist behavior towards others.

Yes, as always, I was impressed by Israel’s infrastructure, but not by whom it serves. South Africa, during apartheid, built some of the greatest highways in the world. For the whites. Others were forced to live in the gutter. Israel does the same.

To make it worse, Israel’s Prime Minister is behaving like a war criminal. And he has been re-elected by his own people as a reward.

I believe in collective guilt. The indifference of people, who tolerate theft and murder committed on their behalf, becomes terrible crime itself.

For long awful centuries, Jews were tortured, humiliated and killed by the racist fanatic Europeans. Now, instead of joining internationalist, progressive forces, Israeli Jews of European origin, have changed their identity, and firmly joined the ranks of the imperialist oppressors. They joined their former torturers.

Now they are committing crimes against humanity not because they are Jews, but because they are Europeans.

Julian Assange’s Blood Will be on The Hands of The Smug Elite — Eurasia Future

There is now a very grave danger that Julian Assange’s life is in imminent danger. This time the most proximate threat is not that of the hangman but of an unknown illness that according to reports has rendered Assange unable to even hold a conservation with his lawyers. At today’s […] The post Julian Assange’s…

via Julian Assange’s Blood Will be on The Hands of The Smug Elite — Eurasia Future

الصين نحو الترجمة السياسيّة لتفوّقها الاقتصاديّ!

مايو 29, 2019

د. وفيق إبراهيم

للمرة الأولى تذهب الصين نحو السياسة الصرفة، فتستبقُ مشروعاً أميركياً في «ورشة البحرين» هدفه تأمين حلف عربي إسلامي إسرائيلي أميركي يُوطِدُ سيطرته الاحادية على العالم.

فتعلن على الفور أنها مع حليفتها روسيا قررتا مقاطعة قمة البحرين المرتقبة اواخر الشهر المقبل.

كانت الصين قبل هذا الموقف تمتنع عن المشاركة العلنية في الصراعات السياسية الدولية والاقليمية وذلك لتسهيل اختراقات سلعها لمعظم اسواق العالم.

وكانت تفرُ من المجابهات السياسية وتتسربل بحيادية بدا فيها السياسي الصيني مختبئاً خلف ستارة شفافة يرقب من خلالها انتشار سلعه في الأسواق العالمية مطلقاً ابتسامة ماكرة توحي بأن الصين في مرحلة ترقب فقط.

لكن هذا التمنّع لم يردعها عن بناء «جزر اصطناعية» في بحر الصين اقامت عليها قواعد عسكرية في مواجهة الهيمنة الأميركية الكاملة على دول البحر.

وحدها كوريا الشمالية حافظت على حلفها العميق مع الصين التي تعاملها بالمقابل بأهمية جيوبوليتيكية متقدمة، لكنها لم تدفع الأمور مع الأميركيين الى صدام مكشوف حتى في الحروب الاقتصادية المندلعة بينهما على أكثر من صعيد. وهذا يكشف عن نزوع أميركي الى عرقلة الصين قبل استقرارها في ثنائية دولية للقرار الدولي او ثلاثية.

لم تكن الصين إذاً تعبأُ بحروب إيقاع الضرائب عليها من الأميركيين وذلك بخلفية اقتناعها بالنجاحات الاختراقية التي حققتها سلعها في الأسواق الشعبية الأميركية والاوروبية والأفريقية والآسيوية وصولاً الى استراليا.

فإذا كانت واشنطن مسرورة بأحاديتها والروس بتمكنهم العسكري، فإن الابتهاج الصيني متمركز في تلك السلعة الصاروخيّة الطابع التي اراد منها النظام الشيوعي الصيني استعمال وسائل دفعٍ رأسمالية لتأمين حاجات مواطنيه المتخطين المليار وربع المليار نسمة.

هناك اذاً مفترق استراتيجي فرض على الصين دعم اقتصادها الكوني بالسياسة العالمية.

علماً بأنها المرة الاولى التي تعلن فيها موقفاً مشتركاً مع الروس، لكنها كانت مواقف عامة حول حق الشعوب بالتحرّر وتأييد التطور ورفض الهيمنات.

فذهبت هذه المرة الى الكشف عن تبنيها آليات سياسية قادرة على مواجهة المرحلة الأخيرة من الامبراطورية الأميركية وهي مرحلة خطرة يضرب فيها الأميركيون شمالاً وجنوباً من دون تمييز لإنقاذ نفوذهم المتراجع.

ابتدأ هذا «الحراك الأصفر» تطبيق موقفين صينيين متناقضين من موضوع محاولات أميركية لتصفير النفط الإيراني فأعلنت بكين الالتزام بها لكنها تواصل استيراد النفط من إيران، علماً أنه كان بإمكانها استيراد كميات كبيرة ونظامية منه من أي مكان في العالم.

وكانت تأمل بأن يضرب اليأس رؤوس الأميركيين فيعودون عن الاستهداف العشوائي والمركز، إلا أن «رادارها الاستراتيجي» أنبأها بأن مسلسل القمم الأميركية التخطيط التي تجمع السعودية اثنتين منها هذا الشهر إسلامية وخليجية وثالثة في البحرين آخر الشهر المقبل أفهمها بوجود مشروع أميركي لإقفال باب العالم العربي والإسلامي في وجهها مع الروس على أن تتولى الضرائب الأميركية التصاعدية إقفال الأبواب امام سلعها، والطرفان الأميركي والعربي الإسلامي قادران حسب الخبراء الأميركيين على كسب معركة الصراع على أفريقيا وبعض أنحاء آسيا الاسلامية.

وهذا السيناريو يحتاج عملية «جمع وضم» في الشرق الأوسط لإنتاج الآليات المؤثرة والمطلوبة، فظهرت طلائع التحرك الأميركي برعاية قمتين خليجية وعربية في السعودية.

زعمت أنها لتأمين موقف موحّد من إيران كجاري عادتها في التحشيد. والحاجة الأميركية السعودية الى وحدة الموقف في هذه المرحلة الاستراتيجية فرضت على الرياض دعوة قطر الى القمم الثلاث وتركيا الى قمة البحرين على الرغم من الصراعات العميقة بينها، لكنها الحاجة الأميركية الحالية الى أكبر عدد ممكن من الدول داخل إطار الآلية الأميركية لمنع تقلص الأحادية الأميركية أو تناثرها.

فاكتفت الصين عند هذا الحد بالموقف الروسي المناهض بشدة للعقوبات على إيران ومحاصرتها إلا أنها لم تعد تستطيع الصمت للضرورة الاقتصادية عن «ورشة البحرين» الذاهبة بوضوح نحو دفع حلف إسلامي عربي إسرائيلي أميركي له عنوان فلسطيني وأبعاد صينية روسية، فإذا كان انهاء قضية فلسطين هو المدخل الى هذا الحلف، فإن تمتينه بمثابة استخدام لأسلوب الاحلاف الاستراتيجية في وجه تطور القوى العالمية مثل الصين وروسيا واوروبا والهند.

لذلك ربط الصينيون بين محاصرة إيران وقمتي السعودية وورشة البحرين كسياق أميركي صرف لإقفال الاسواق امام السلع الصينية ومنع الادوار الإقليمية والدولية الروسية والصينية في آن معاً، فكان لا بدّ من مباشرة تحرّك مشترك بين بكين وموسكو يرتدي هذه المرة شكل منازلات سياسية ذات طابع استراتيجي من فنزويلا وأميركا الجنوبية الى الشرق الأوسط.

فهل بدأ عصر الثلاثيّة الدولية؟

المُسلمة الأولى تفيد بأن الاحادية الأميركية تتراجع وسط صعود للادوار الروسية الصينية. وهي ادوار تنحو نحو العالمية، لكنها لم تدركها بعد أو تستقر في أبراجها، فالصراع في الشرق الأوسط أساسي لتثبيت هذه التوازنات الجديدة، ونجاحها في منع إلغاء قضية فلسطين اساسي لاجهاض الحلف الاسلامي الخليجي الإسرائيلي المكلف بإقفال السياسة والاقتصاد في وجه الروس والصينيين.

لقد وصلت الصين الى مرحلة الاقتناع بأن الخسارة المؤقتة لبعض سلعها في اسواق الخليج او أميركا هي من لزوم معركة الصراع الأكبر على اسواق العالم بأسره.

مقالات مشابهة

Inside the Yellow Vests: What the Western media will not report (Part 2)

by Ollie Richardson for The Saker Blog

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Background

When the words “Yellow Vests”/“Yellow Jackets”/“Gilets Jaunes” are heard or read by someone who is more inclined to read sources of information that cannot be described as mainstream/corporate media, they most likely will say “Ah yes, I know who they are/what it is!” and recount what they heard or saw in the past when this topic was popular… for about a month. Or more specifically, during November-December 2018 when images such as the one below (a still from this video) were being widely disseminated.

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Then the Venezuela coup attempt, or Brexit, or Assange, etc retakes centre stage and what is happening in France fades into the background. What I am describing is simply the nature of the “news” cycle, and not a pretention to its consumers.

Hence why in March 2019 I wrote an article (part 1) based on my own primary research that aimed to convey the most important events in the history of the Yellow Vests movement. Whilst the information presented in this article is far from being comprehensive, it is also unproductive to report as isolated events every single perceived drama that happens both on the ground and on social networks. For analytical purposes, it is much more efficient – in an era where Twitter dictates the speed and pattern of the flow of information – to concatenate information and to zoom out enough in order to capture enough context without entering the realm of ultra-metaphysical babble.

But of course, over 2 months has passed since this article was published, and the situation has traversed along many twists and turns since. But if the main aim of the movement is to remove the neoliberal butcher Macron and dismantle party politics in general, then the destination is still somewhere beyond the horizon. Instead of writing another chronology of events and focusing on visual cues, such as police violence and photos of large processions, in this article I will simply write ten conclusions featuring examples that can be made based on 28 (at the time of writing) straight Saturday’s of mobilisation. I should stress that they are in no particular order.

1. The Yellow Vests are a catalyst for change, but do not embody some end product.

The French political scientist Samuel Hayat stated in an interview with Mediapart – one of the few independent media resources in France that supports the Yellow Vests – the following (translation is my own):

I do not think that this movement upsets the political field, even though the will of the Yellow Vests to get out of the partisan field is strong. Although the disrepute of politicians will only increase, the latter seems determined to continue to act as if everything could continue as before.

On the other hand, I think that this mobilisation will profoundly change the space of the social movements by allowing people, previously excluded, to enter it. Many Yellow Vests who did not participate until now have adopted the habit of demonstrating. I think they will not leave and that putting on once or putting on again a yellow vest will give them legitimacy in order to join this space of social movements.

There is no reason, in my opinion, for the movement to stop. The Yellow Vests have withstood so much slander, disrepute, repression, manoeuvres like the ‘grand debate’ that I do not see how the school holidays could stop it. One can imagine a base of mobilisations of low intensity, at the local and national level, with a regular rise in conflicts and grafts on more sectoral or partisan movements. In my opinion, not only will the Yellow Vests continue to fight, but they have created the conditions for the power of social movements of all kinds to increasingly rise in the coming years.”

In other words, the Yellow Vests movement is not the “be all and end all”, but a catalyst for other processes. Think of it like a battering ram against the fortress of pseudo-democracy – it creates breaches that in theory can be made even wider by additional forces. But the big mistake here is to think that this means that all the forces work harmoniously towards a sole objective or aim. This is not the case, and more on this topic can be read later.

2. Serious work on implementing “RIC” is ongoing in the background.

Whilst the cameras focus on the street marches and the clashes with the police, serious effort (mostly in the form of conferences – here is an example) is being made to implement a replacement for party politics – the main demand of the Yellow Vests. It is known in French as “Référendum d’initiative citoyenne”, which translates as Citizens’ Initiative Referendum.

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What is it? In simple words, it is direct democracy Swiss-style. The booklet photograph below sent to me by an acquaintance aids understanding of what this means. It can either take the form of the top left example (“direct democracy”), the top right example (“representative democracy”), or the bottom example, which is a hybrid of the former two (“liquid democracy”).

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An interesting democratic innovation currently in experimentation in some countries of the world such as Germany, Sweden, Iceland, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, and Brazil … mainly implemented within the pirate parties of these countries.

The point here is that no concrete form has been decided on, since matters are still at the experimental stage. The infographic below, created by the “Objectif RIC” organisation (which is 100% citizen activism), divides the process of implementation into 3 stages: inform, assemble, vote.

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In truth, citizen work on implementing “RIC” has been taking place for over 40 years in France. No government ever adopted it, since sawing the branch on which one sits isn’t convenient, but the demand for it grows more and more with each passing year (and governmental scandal). For my intents and purposes, the infographic below can be summarised in only one phrase: grassroots activism. It cannot be sprinkled on Élysée Palace like magic power, but the seeds can be planted locally and carefully fed/watered. Will fruits grow overnight? No. Do the Yellow Vests themselves understand this? Gradually, yes.

In this article I don’t intend to develop on the topic of “RIC” and write in detail about it, but I think that the video below can give laypersons a general (digestible) idea as to why it’s in demand.

3. Concerning the Saturday marches, things have cardinally changed.

As I alluded to earlier, the yellow processions in the streets are not the alpha and omega of what is happening in France. They are an element, certainly, but nothing more (and nothing less either). Here it is possible to enter into deep analysis of the process of organising protests, focusing on individuals, and even dissect video footage of the marches. But, as I said above, this is not especially constructive and ultimately will not teach anyone living outside of France anything that they can apply in their own country – after all, neoliberalistic globalism took root in all English-speaking countries.

What can be said however is that ever since Macron banned protests on the Champs-Élysées in Paris after the March 16th rampage (violators will receive a €135 fine, which becomes €375 if it’s not paid within 45 days), replaced the head of the Paris prefecture, and ordered local mayors to create certain zones in town and city centres across the country in which Yellow Vests protests are banned; ever since the Constitutional Court adopted the so-called “anti-casseur” law at the order of Macron (the police can stop and search anyone without having a formal reason to do so – something I’ve experienced enough times to now be fed up of it); ever since the police started to deliberately mutilate people for the purpose of psychological warfare, the demonstrations became seriously throttled. The initial tactic that in fact launched the Yellow Vests protests on November 17th 2018 was to just turn up at the Arc de’Triomphe without a sanction from the prefecture. But this was BEFORE the aforementioned law was passed, and BEFORE the Champs-Élysées ban (the metro stations on the avenue are now closed on Saturdays).

This new gear engaged by the flywheel of Macronian repression resulted in the Yellow Vests adapting a new tactic (it’s important to note that no sole “leader” organises demonstrations, but a group of “leaders” – yes): sanctioned protests, with the route approved by the prefecture. This tactic change is a double-edged sword, since the more radical anti-Macron protestors consider that a column encircled by the police from the start to the end of the route, with a dispersal time of 5:30pm, is not exactly something that makes the government poop its pants. But on the other hand, it allows a large group of people wearing yellow vests to assemble in a single place. The subsequent 4 Saturdays followed this scheme, with those who prefer more offensive actions (and who can only travel for financial/logistical reasons) preferring to either stay at home, due to the fear of being mutilated, or to protest locally. I personally participated in these “peaceful” protests and am glad that I did so, since I learnt a lot about the nuts and bolts of the movement as a result.

On April 20th another large non-sanctioned event (called “ultimatum”) was supposed to happen in Paris, and in hindsight I can say that it was start of an experiment (I stress: this is my opinion, the Yellow Vests did not officially declare an experiment or use this word in social media chatter). As I reported at the time, some Yellow Vests planned to all gather in one place (without a sanction) and to do something – probably to storm the Champs-Élysées, but we’ll never know what would have been decided since things went pear-shaped early. At the same time, other Yellow Vests planned to take part in a sanctioned march from Bercy to Place de la Republique. The plan to assemble without permission failed miserably since the police encircled the announced meeting place (and arrested and/or fined those who they could) and metro stations (even closing some stations), so plan B was to go to Bercy instead and take part in the sanctioned protest. As a result, and this was quite predictable, the sanctioned protest soon degenerated into a wild one, with the route to PdlR being invented on the fly and Black Bloc joining the column.

The lesson learnt on this day was that non-sanctioned protests of the kind seen at the start of the movement are now simply not possible. But the experiment needed additional evidence, since errors in this tactic were noted (having many pre-assembly meeting places, thus allowing the police to nip things in the bud before they’ve even begun; insisting on wearing a yellow vest) and an improved one would later be deployed.

On May 18th the prominent Yellow Vests who generally favour sanctioned marches and are less militant than other prominent faces received a wake up call that would ultimately result in them giving their consent to try another tactic: the police treated their sanctioned rally like a non-sanctioned one (watch the video – skim through it from 38:00 onwards. One of the signatories of the march shouts through the megaphone “What are you doing?! It’s a sanctioned demo!”, since he doesn’t understand why in the past they were more forgiving and kept their distance, but on this day they are hugging the column very tightly). I suspect that this happened because a certain “leader” announced just after the May 11th demonstration that the sanctioned and themed marches were useless and won’t propel the movement anymore, and thus the police thought that maybe the Yellow Vests had “bad” intentions. They were wrong on this occasion, because it would be May 25th – “ultimatum” No. 3 – when the Yellow Vests would try to exit the framework of being “peaceful”.

On this day a new and improved tactic was deployed – all Yellow Vests had to go to the Champs-Élysées but withoutwearing a yellow vest. Since I don’t want to describe everything that happened on that day (and how I walked 15 kilometers for what some may say was nothing) in this article, I will just say that the tactic failed. The police already knew what was planned (they monitor social networks) and sent dozens upon dozens of goons to the avenue. I know that it has become almost cliché to say, but I honestly felt I was in Nazi Germany at this time. The way in which the cops combed the avenue and chased anyone who shouted anti-Macron slogans was eerie, to say the least (my discreet photos are here, although I was cautious to not give the cops an excuse to fine me). Plan B on this day was to gather at Place de la Republique at 2pm for a sanctioned assembly. A repetition of April 20th then happened – watch the video below:

Thus, the method that has proven to be the most effective given the circumstances is to organise a sanctioned protest and then start a riot. Even if the approved assembly point(s) and route are boxed in by the cops from start to finish, the protestors at least have the chance to form a large crowd. I stumbled across this balanced/grounded Facebook comment (I censored the author’s name and profile picture) on May 26th that offers a window into the thinking of the average Yellow Vest after the end of this experiment:

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“I understand … we are all unique and responsible individuals … and whatever happens we will be alone with the consequences of our choices … I also am nostalgic of the first demonstrations and their spontaneity … but I know today that they are no longer possible without paying a very high price … so I made the choice not to go to Paris this Saturday … because I knew what the risks were and I was personally not ready to run them … I have already lost a large part of my entourage, I assume, I receive complaints from my children who are starting to find the time to be long and our absence too frequent, I assume the fear of finding myself unjustly gassed, encircled, and potentially hurt for my ideas … but I was not ready to explain to my children that I have no more money because we will have incurred a €270 fine by participating in an unsanctioned demonstration, or not go home due to being detained on the day before the [EU] elections on which we base a small hope to show our anger. Obviously it is not right to have to risk all that in order to be able to express our opinions … but we are no longer in France of before… so I take my responsibilities and I adapt … So I went to [the sanctioned protest in] Amiens this Saturday … because the demo of [Sophie] Tissier [a fake Yellow Vest who always registers sanctioned protests in order to split the Yellow Vests up on Saturdays. I don’t know if she is a conscious saboteur or just an idiot, but her demos are a total waste of time – O.R ] – no thank you … now I do not blame anyone and remain an admirer of the courage of some and attempts made … and yes Amiens was not Paris and Paris missed me … I will come to the next sanctioned protest in Paris … and in the same way I will take onboard the reflections of those who think that this is not the solution … but everyone has to face their personal choices …”

For those laypersons who observe this experimental process from afar it seems like the movement is running out of steam (after all, the government takes great pleasure in disseminating its fake numbers for mobilisation and instructing its pocket media to repeat such mantras as “the numbers lessen”, “the movement is coming to a standstill”, etc), because there hasn’t been any large-scale rioting since March 16th. But this, indeed, only seems to be the case. When the movement is viewed from the perspective I described above (it’s not the alpha and omega), one can see that the movement does not “essoufflé” (run out of breath), but on the contrary, in the wider context of tightening police repression and intensifying media brainwashing (the worst example so far is when the government openly accused the Yellow Vests of attacking a hospital, before facts emerged an hour later proving this to be a total lie), the fact that the movement hasn’t surrendered and “dares” to continue acts as an additional thorn in the Macron regime’s side.

4. Exportation isn’t possible

The Yellow Vests protests didn’t just happen as a reaction to something that happened in November 2018, although the planned fuel tax was certainly what provoked the worst riots since 1968. France as a country of course has a history of “revolutions” and violent changes of power – alternating between a monarchy and a republic, so in this respect what is happening today is not much of a riddle, especially for historians like Samuel Hayat. But to throw yellow vests on British Brexiteers, for example, and to forecast a similar result would be most ridiculous.

Firstly, British people do not have the same mentality as French (both native and immigrants), and as we have seen, they prefer to use the ballot box (to vote for Nigel Farage’s “Brexit Party”) and remain “civilised”. Not to mention the fact that Margaret Thatcher strangled the protest movement and her noxious neoliberal successors hammered in additional nails. Secondly, Britain is still a regionally divided country, and what concerns Londoners might not necessarily matter to Yorkshire residents, not to mention the Welsh, Irish, or Scottish, and visa-versa. But at the same time, promoting the participative democracy model of decision-making wouldn’t count as exportation, since it’s not a French invention and has been implemented in different countries around the world. At the end of the day, France has its own contradictions, and in this regard the Yellow Vests are a manifestation of decisions made by its past rulers. An example of this was given above: previous governments’ lack of interest in implementing RIC. So, until this demand (which will grow exponentially) is met, whoever is President can also expect unrest if “reforms” and “austerity” are implemented.

An additional factor that also must be taken into account is the history of the Vichy regime founded in 1940. Again, it might seem cliché to cite a country’s Nazi-collaborator past, but it’s simply impossible to just pretend that it isn’t connected to today’s events. Hence why the Yellow Vests chant “Police nationale, milice du capital”, referencing Pétain’s henchmen and the role of the police today in protecting capitalists.

5. Talking about the influence of the CRIF lobby is difficult

In order to adequately understand the Yellow Vests movement, it is advisable to think of it as a slice of a many-layered cake. In the column that marches in sanctioned protests on Saturdays there are liberals of all shades who voted against Le Pen in 2017 (note: not for Macron) and like to think that they are morally superior because they wouldn’t say boo to a goose (LGBTists, environmentalists, pro-migrantists, unionists, Trotskyists, “Trente Glorieuses”-ists, feminists, etc), “anti-fascists” (they cooperate with the Yellow Vests but at the same time keep distance; they haven’t said anything about the Banderist regime in Kiev, and most likely can’t even point to Ukraine on a map, but believe that all governments are “fascist” and will thus attack the cops) blue collar workers (they do manual labour jobs and are typically more sincere than liberals; throwing a glass bottle at the cops is not an issue for them), immigrant youth (Sykes-Picot Arabs and Africans who do not conform to the field negro/house negro paradigm that capitalism imposes on them; they don’t tend to join a Black Bloc but prefer to mingle with the Yellow Vests), angry mothers (tough as nails and would demolish an unarmed cop in a fist fight; not to be confused with liberal feminists), militant pensioners (in difference to “Trente Glorieuses”-ists, they can often be seen defying the tear gas and even confronting the cops). But when the rioting begins, the liberals disappear and denounce “violence”, even though the state rapes them every single day (and bombs foreign countries using their tax money), and Black Bloc (youth who are a mixture of the more liberal protestors I described above, with a more “anarchist” tint) takes their place.

However, a public discussion about the main warmonger (for example) in France, the anti-Gilets Jaunes and pro-Israel lobby known as “Le Conseil représentatif des institutions juives de France” (CRIF), is only possible with a narrow section of this slice (non liberals). There are of course Jews who are Yellow Vests, and they do publically counter the accusations that the movement is “anti-Semitic”. It is, however, possible to publically criticise the Bernard-Henri Lévy & Co war machine, since its track record in France has dirtied itself beyond the point where it can be whitewashed. There are also Yellow Vests who wave Palestinian flags at demonstrations and spread anti-apartheid materials.

CRIF’s campaign against the Yellow Vests led to Macron “adopting an international definition of anti-Semitism” that equates it to anti-Zionism. I.e., criticising Israel’s extermination of Palestinians suddenly became a criminal offence. The cherry on the cake: watch how the Alain Finkielkraut debacle led to this nauseating Macron-CRIF performance:

6. The police severely intimidated the “leaders” and impudently abuse their powers

Even if the Yellow Vests movement takes pride in “not having leaders” and having a “horizontal” structure, someone who for the first time observes the movement for a week will affirm the opposite – that it has leaders, and thus it is has vertical structure. They will see that in terms of the number of social media followers there are 4 main Yellow Vests who stand out but affirm that they are not leaders, and a group of 20 or so figures who play a supporting role. Some rarely take part in demonstrations but instead organise the RIC conferences and do all of the corresponding donkeywork – a kind of intelligentsia. One of the “leaders” in particular was summoned for questioning by the police after May 16th’s demo and was forced to moderate their rhetoric (warned not to call for non-sanctioned protests) or face prison. The same applies to another “leader”, who is still involved in a legal process concerning the “organisation of a non-sanctioned protest”. This has resulted in communication on social networks becoming encrypted – “I heard there was a protest on Saturday, I didn’t organise it, I’m just passing on the information”, like a game of cat and mouse.

Concerning the abuse of powers, no employee of “Compagnies républicaines de sécurité”, nor “Brigade anti-criminalité”, nor “mobile gendarmes” has been punished since the Yellow Vests movement began in November 2018. The

“Inspection générale de la Police nationale” (IGPN) has opened 240 (at the time of writing) cases, but there haven’t been any prosecutions. Not to mention the fact that Alexandre Benalla is still a free man. Below we see what the police think about any attempts to raise awareness about their crimes.

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In fact, it was only on May 21st that one CRS officer was fired for an “unjustified grenade launch” in 2016 (pre-Macron era) that blinded a union protestor.

It is for this reason that the police don’t wear any identification numbers or markings and cover their faces with balaclavas. If the IGPN calls a Yellow Vest complainant and asks for information about an incident, what will they say? No ID markings, face was covered, no “police” armband, etc. I.e., any case is doomed before it’s even opened. Here is an interesting post from May 27th concerning the Champs-Élysées circus two days prior:

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“Good evening everyone,

A friend street medic in Paris is in contact with the LDH to have framework and legal support during demonstrations.

She has to remain anonymous because of her profession, so I post this for her:

‘On Saturday, May 25th for ultimatum No. 3, we tried to reach Avenue Grande Armée. We were warned about the strategy of the police, namely to let the demonstrators pass through 1 or 2 checks before encircling and detaining them, confiscating their materials, and handing out fines for gathering at a forbidden place (or some other formulation that I do not exactly have in mind anymore).

Before going to the avenue, I contacted the legal representative of LDH to have legal advice on fines. Here is what I was told, so share to the greatest number of Yellow Vests or medics that are in this case:

– The fact of allowing access to the place of demonstration, even if it is prohibited, and to then stop everyone present and give them fines is called a misuse of procedure, the fines are questionable and do not hold water.

Be careful, you must have passed through a first barrage for this principle to hold true. Being allowed past means that you have been tacitly allowed to gather on the spot, and tacit consent has legal value.

The LDH is ready to help you to cancel the fines.

You can send your requests for help to the following email: juridique@ldh.france.org

Or to the hotline (note it is open only at certain times): 01 56 55 51 00 which will retransfer you to the hotline for legal assistance.

Courage to all’.”

7. Most of the Yellow Vests’ activist work takes place outside of demonstrations

As I mentioned in point No. 1, the Saturday processions are not the only thing that the Yellow Vests are doing in order to spread the word of the movement. One example: during the rest of the week (normally after work in the evenings) they occupy roundabouts and spaced next to main roads. Below is a photo of a small roundabout at Île d’Oléron:

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And here is what the Yellow Vests did at a bigger roundabout at Phalsbourg:

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And here is a makeshift village created at Vienne:

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And the government’s response? Either demolish installations on the roundabout (photo from April 2nd at Mercurol)…

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Set fire to the huts created by the Yellow Vests….

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A second example of the Yellow Vests activism work is the fight against speed cameras:

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A third example is the “péage” actions, where they promote the idea of free highways:

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A fourth example is the occupation of premises belonging to multinational companies (in the video below the target is Starbucks) that avoid to pay tax in France:

And a fifth example is the creation of the debate platform “Le Vrai Debate” to counter Macron’s electoral campaign re-run known as the “grand debate”, which he launched after the May 16th Yellow Vests offensive on Paris as a damage control PR campaign. The work that has gone into this website, for example, is massive and attacks the problem from another angle.

8. The Yellow Vests are apolitical… or not?

Along with the mantra of “we have no leaders”, the Yellow Vests affirm that they are not interested in party politics. But just how realistic is this pledge? For example, although some Yellow Vests abstained from voting in the EU election (which is the equivalent of a vote for Macron) in order to remain apolitical, other did not abstain, and some even voted for Le Pen. Immediately after the news broke that Le Pen was leading the exit polls, cyber quarrels began between the Yellow Vests, with an example being the Facebook post below from the morning after the EU election:

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“Big rant this morning!

I’m tired of seeing this big war on social networks.

At the foundations we fought for better living conditions, lower fuel price, lower taxes … the list is long …

All we get is DIVISION !!!!

Where are our true values!

We are all in the same shit.

So why the f*ck do we care about race, religion, apolitical or not, unionized or not!

The goal was to unite, not to suffer the moods of each other.

When will a true gathering and union come true?

Everyone has their own opinion.

I have the impression that everyone has forgotten why so many people were on the street on November 17th and that now it’s for personal reasons.

When will you put your anger aside and when will there be true fraternity ??????”

Here we can again refer to the quote of Samuel Hayat that was mentioned above:

I do not think that this movement upsets the political field, even though the will of the Yellow Vests to get out of the partisan field is strong. Although the disrepute of politicians will only increase, the latter seems determined to continue to act as if everything could continue as before.”

Indeed, the fact that the Yellow Vests are a minority of French people (even if the polls say that the majority of the country supports them, these armchair supporters do not physically do anything to assist the cause) automatically rules out any ideas of removing Macron via the ballot box. Hence why changing the system via grassroots work with RIC is more preferable and realistic. In response to the question “Can this ‘citizenism’ (rejection of left/right politics) really organise politics?”, Samuel Hayat says the following:

“This ‘citizenism’ is the object of constant construction and reconstruction within the movement itself, through a series of devices that build unity. This is not only about unified claims, but also about local and national leaders who constantly offer reminders about the norm of unity. It is this constant work that gives the movement its unprecedented longevity and makes it particularly resilient and inclusive. Refusing any demand that is not unanimous imposes to not talk about immigration, unemployment, wages, and the public service, which are divisive topics.

This is also why the movement prevents itself from asking the question of domination, because domination would reveal the existence of crystallised and partly invisible powers that go through the movement itself, be it between small bosses and the precarious, between private employees and public employees, between unemployed people and people who work, between men and women, between whites and non-whites … The survival of the movement is thus conditioned by the fact that all of this remains hushed up.

This is not an aporia of the movement, since this does not prevent it from continuing and taking an increasingly important place in the space of social movements. But if one places oneself in the tradition of the left, which gives a central place to the questioning of dominations, it is a movement that can not completely belong to it.”

I.e., it’s not that the movement is “apolitical”, but more that an assembly of thousands of people in an atomised society can only be possible through a temporary consensus based on a primitive instincts. The danger is, of course, that if the aim is achieved and the party politics system is removed along with their multi-national company sponsors, there could be a “Lord of the Flies” scenario, since deep societal contradictions were never collectively identified and resolved.

9. The coup in Ukraine paradoxically serves as an example

Unfortunately, the propaganda broadcasted by the US neocons and their EU lapdogs concerning their coup d’etat in Kiev in 2014 serves as an example of a “revolution” for many Yellow Vests. They see footage on YouTube or Netflix (the propaganda movie “Winter on Fire” is the main culprit) of molotov cocktails being launched at “Berkut” or of brainwashed Ukrainians putting pots on their heads, or of politicians being thrown into bins, and they think that it actually led to a revolution. They think that clashes with the police will automatically lead to the government being overthrown and that a paradise will thus arrive. In fact, one of the “leaders” even changed their Twitter profile banner to reflect this “fact”. Well, clashes with the police haven’t led to anything of that nature, which is proof in itself that the Yellow Vests movement is not externally financed like Maidan was ($6 billion from the State Department + some cookies and snipers). But most Yellow Vests do not understand either this or the concept of a “colour revolution”. This is simply down to ignorance and is a consequence of years of brainwashing. Now they don’t trust the mainstream media – the same agencies that sold “Maidan” as a “revolution” – and prefer RT and Sputnik. A painful paradox, indeed.

A vivid example: on March 30th I witnessed (at the 2:20 mark in this video) someone literally replicating a Nuland NGO media trick – holding a mirror in front of the police. How so?

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I know for a fact that he saw a Facebook post in a Yellow Vests group published just a few days prior showing the original stunt in Ukraine and recommending to copy it.

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Even though there was only one idiot who decided to follow the advice, it is still one too many. What’s most tragic here is that what’s happening now in France is the boomerang effect of the government’s foreign meddling, and so evidently the French people have to experience the consequences on their own skin in order to learn from it. Does this entail civil war? This is a topic for another day. But educational work needs to be done anyway. Hence why Sputnik France recently put Donbass in the spotlight and published a kind of “dummies guide” to non-existent “Russian aggression” in the Donetsk People’s Republic. Of course, this work has to be gradual and systematic, since Russian media must first gain the trust of the French people before it can put pressure on sensitive points.

10. The most shocking contrast

Whilst the scenes of protesters clashing with the police are shocking, the most striking “clash”, or at least to my eyes, is between the Yellow Vests and the bourgeoisie stumbling down the streets like consumerist zombies, plugged into a rose-tinted matrix where Stockholm syndrome enforces this field negro/house negro paradigm I mentioned earlier (see the photo below, I don’t know who took it but it’s case in point)

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On April 20th, whilst I was traveling to the other side of Paris, I saw and photographed a scene that epitomizes the problem. I have nothing more to add.

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I will reiterate – the 10 conclusions I have written above are not the only 10 conclusions that should be drawn from nearly 7 months of Yellow Vests protests. They are just important observations. A definitive list of conclusions can easily fill the pages of a book, but as I mentioned earlier – referring to history and concatenating events that follow a certain pattern saves a lot of time and is simply more efficient, taking into account the speed of information consumption today. And it goes without saying that my conclusions may not correspond to other people’s, although I’d like to think that such wealth disparity and social stratification aren’t as “non-existent” as the presstitute media likes to pretend they are.

If anyone has any questions about anything written in this article or about the Yellow Vests movement in general, please ask them in the comments below and I will answer them to the best of my ability in a future article.

Related

Robert Stuart vs the BBC: One Man’s Quest to Expose a Fake BBC Video about Syria

By Rick Sterling
Source

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It’s a David vs Goliath story. A former local newspaper reporter, Robert Stuart, is taking on the British Broadcasting Corporation. Stuart believes that a sensational video story about an alleged atrocity in Syria “was largely, if not entirely, staged.”  The BBC would like it all to just go away. But like David, Stuart will not back down or let it go.  It has been proposed that the BBC could settle the issue by releasing the raw footage from the event, but they refuse to do this. Why?

The Controversial Video

The video report in controversy is ‘Saving Syria’s Children‘. Scenes from it were first broadcast as a BBC news report on August 29, 2013 and again as a BBC Panorama special in September. ‘Saving Syria’s Children’ was produced by BBC reporter Ian Pannell with Darren Conway as camera operator and director.

The news report footage was taken in a town north of Aleppo city in a region controlled by the armed opposition. It purports to show the aftermath of a Syrian aerial attack using incendiary weapons, perhaps napalm, killing and burning dozens of youth.  The video shows the youth arriving and being treated at a nearby hospital where the BBC film team was coincidentally filming two British medical volunteers from a British medical relief organization.

The video had a strong impact. The incident was on August 26. The video was shown on the BBCthree days later as the British Parliament was debating whether to support military action by the US against Syria.  As it turned out, British parliament voted against supporting military action. But the video was effective in demonizing the Syrian government. After all, what kind of government attacks school children with napalm-like bombs?

The Context

‘Saving Syria’s Children’ was produced at a critical moment in the Syrian conflict. Just days before, on August 21,  there had been an alleged sarin gas attack against an opposition held area on the outskirts of Damascus. Western media was inundated with videos showing dead Syrian children amidst accusations the Syrian government had attacked civilians, killing up to 1400.  The Syrian government was assumed to be responsible and the attack said to be a clear violation of President Obama’s “red line” against chemical weapons.

This incident had the effect of increasing pressure for Western states or NATO to attack Syria. It would be for humanitarian reasons, rationalized by the “responsibility to protect”.

The assumption that ‘the regime’ did it has been challenged. Highly regarded American journalists including the late Robert Parry and Seymour Hersh investigated and contradicted the mainstream media. They pointed to the crimes being committed by the armed opposition for political goals.  A report by two experts including a UN weapons inspector and Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity also came to the conclusion that the Syrian government was not responsible and the attack was actually by an armed opposition group with the goal of forcing NATO intervention.

Why the Controversial Video is Suspicious

After seeing skeptical comments about ‘Saving Syria’s Children’ on an online discussion board, Robert Stuart looked at the video for himself. Like others, he thought the hospital sequences looked artificial, almost like scenes from a badly acted horror movie.

But unlike others, he decided to find out. Thus began his quest to ascertain the truth. Was the video real or was it staged?  Was it authentic or contrived propaganda?

Over almost six years his research has revealed many curious elements about the video including:

* Youth in the hospital video appear to act on cue.

* There is a six hour discrepancy in reports about when the incident occurred.

* One of the supposed victims, shown writhing in pain on a stretcher, is seen earlier walking unaided into the ambulance.

* The incident happened in an area controlled by a terror group associated with ISIS.

* One of the British medics is a former UK soldier involved in simulated injury training.

* The other British medic is daughter of a prominent figure in the Syrian opposition.

* In 2016 a local rebel commander testified that the alleged attack never happened.

Support for Robert Stuart

Robert Stuart’s formal complaints to the BBC have been rebuffed. His challenges to those involved in the production have been ignored or stifled.  Yet his quest has won support from some major journalistic and political figures.

Former Guardian columnist Jonathan Cook has written several articles on the story. He says,  “Stuart’s sustained research and questioning of the BBC, and the state broadcaster’s increasing evasions, have given rise to ever greater concerns about the footage. It looks suspiciously like one scene in particular, of people with horrific burns, was staged.”

Former UK Ambassador Craig Murray has compared scenes in ‘Saving Syria’s Children’ with his own harrowing experience with burn victims. He says, “The alleged footage of burn victims in hospital following a napalm attack bears no resemblance whatsoever to how victims, doctors and relatives actually behave in these circumstances.”

Film-maker Victor Lewis-Smith has done numerous projects for the BBC. When learning about Stuart’s research he asked for some explanations and suggested they could resolve the issue by releasing the raw video footage of the events. When they refused to do this, he publicly tore up his BBC contract.

Why it Matters

The BBC has a reputation for objectivity. If BBC management was deceived by the video, along with the public, they should have a strong interest in uncovering and correcting this.  If there was an error, they should want to clarify, correct and ensure it is not repeated.

The BBC could go a long way toward resolving this issue by releasing raw footage of the scenes in ‘Saving Syria’s Children’.  Why have they refused to do this? In addition, they have actively removed youtube copies of ‘Saving Syria’s Children’. If they are proud of that production, why are they removing public copies of it?

Has the BBC produced and broadcast contrived or fake video reports in support of British government foreign policy of aggression against Syria? It is important that this question be answered to either restore public trust (if the videos are authentic) or to expose and correct misdeeds (if the videos are largely or entirely staged).

The issue at stake is not only the BBC; it is the manipulation of media to deceive the public into supporting elite-driven foreign policy. ‘Saving Syria’s Children’ is an important case study.

The Future

Robert Stuart is not quitting.  He hopes the next step will be a documentary film dramatically showing what he has discovered and further investigating important yet unexplored angles.

The highly experienced film producer Victor Lewis-Smith, who tore up his BBC contract, has stepped forward to help make this happen.

But to produce a high quality documentary including some travel takes funding. After devoting almost six years to this effort, Robert Stuart’s resources are exhausted. The project needs support from concerned members of the public.

If you support Robert Stuart’s efforts, go to this crowdfunding website.  There you can learn more and contribute to this important effort to reveal whether the BBC video ‘Saving Syria’s Children’ showed true or staged events. Was the alleged “napalm” attack real or was it staged propaganda?  The project needs a large number of small donors and a few substantial ones to meet the June 7 deadline.

As actor and producer Keith Allen says,” Please help us to reach the target so that we can discover the facts, examine the evidence, and present the truth about ‘Saving Syria’s Children’. I think it’s really important.”

A Robust Message from Palestine’s Foreign Minister and an Attempt at Israeli Propaganda from BBC Israeli Hasbara Asset Raffi Berg

By Stuart Littlewood
Source

“Freedom not conditional liberty. Sovereignty not limited autonomy. Peace not subjugation:” Riad Malki sends plain message to Trump and Kushner in run-up to their “Deal of the century”

Riad Maliki talking in Catham House c89c2

Chatham House, the international affairs think-tank in London, recently invited Dr Riad Malki, Palestine’s minister of foreign affairs, to talk about the future of Palestine ahead of the “Deal of the century” dreamed up by the Trump administration. Malki is involved in shaping the Palestinian response to that initiative when it is finally revealed.

During questions Raffi Berg (pictured below), editor of the BBC News website’s Middle East section, said that while the official Palestine Liberation Organisation’s (PLO) position is for two states as the solution to the conflict, he mischievously suggested that the recent Israel election results showed that Israelis consider the Palestinians’ position to be “insincere”. He asked: “Can you make clear whether you fully accept the presence of Israel as a country in the Middle East within/outside [indistinct] the 1967 ceasefire line?”

Raffi Berg BBC hasbara agent 7e7df

This sounded a little off-key from the BBC, which is supposed to maintain an air of utter impartiality. However, Malki dealt with the unfriendly prod quite firmly:

We have made it very clear that we are going to accept, and we have taken the decision to accept, the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on the 1967 borders, to accept the historic compromise that the state of Palestine will be established on the 22 per cent of historic Palestine. It is not only the Palestinian position, it is the position of almost every country around the world.

He reminded the audience that there is international consensus about the two-state solution and that the Palestinian state should be established on the 1967 borders with Jerusalem the capital of Palestine and of Israel. He continued:

We have also agreed in principle that we are ready during negotiations to talk about territorial exchange but always to keep the 1967 border as the border of the state of Palestine. So, we are not going to accept anything less than that.

If anyone talks about the State of Palestine on less than the 1967 border, or the State of Israel beyond that line, this is not acceptable because it defies not only the negotiating position but international law and the international consensus.

I recently wrote about Hanan Ashrawi, a long-time member of the PLO executive and an all-round formidable lady, saying we should see and hear more of her in a front line spokes role. The same goes for Raid Malki who is well informed and articulate and came across well at Chatham House. That they remain invisible to the Western world is the fault of the PLO and Palestinian Authority who are simply not media savvy and stubbornly intend to remain that way. Their embassies (or missions) around the globe are the same.

Malki was a one-time leading member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and has a PhD in civil engineering from the American University. His impressive CV includes Head of the Civil Engineering Department at Birzeit University, the European Peace Prize in 2000 in Copenhagen and the Italian Peace Prize (Lombardi) in 2005. He is a visiting professor at several European universities.

In his Chatham House speech Malki pulls no punches: “I know that some may be uncomfortable to hear the words ‘colonialism’ and ‘apartheid’ associated with Israel. But they are what we experience on a daily basis and what is visible to the naked eye.”

As for America, “the US administration has shown nothing but disregard for Palestinian rights and Palestinian lives, for international law and the internationally recognised terms of reference, and for common sense and decency”.

The Palestinian people, he insists, “want freedom not conditional liberty. They want sovereignty and not limited autonomy. They want peace and coexistence not domination and subjugation. He continued:

There are two ways to end the conflict: a peace accord or capitulation, meaning a surrender act. We continue to stand ready to negotiate the peace accords based on the internationally recognised terms of reference and the pre-1967 borders, under international monitoring holding accountable the parties and within a determined and binding timeframe. We will never be ready to sign a surrender act.

It is worth watching the video. Sparks are set to fly when Trump and Kushner eventually unveil their big deal.

I’m not a reader of the BBC News website. Long ago I came to distrust the BBC’s reporting of Middle East affairs, so I tend to ignore it. Berg’s line of questioning prompted me to look deeper and I found this piece from 2013 by Amena Saleem in Electronic Intifada titled “BBC editor urged colleagues to downplay Israel’s siege of Gaza”, in which she reports that Berg, during Israel’s eight-day assault on Gaza in November 2012 which killed nearly 200 Palestinians, emailed BBC staff to write more favourably about Israel. He urged them, allegedly, not to blame Israel for the prolonged onslaught but to promote the Israeli government line that the “offensive” was “aimed at ending rocket fire from Gaza”, despite the fact that it was Israel which broke the ceasefire.

In another email, he told them: “Please remember, Israel doesn’t maintain a blockade around Gaza. Egypt controls the southern border.” However, the United Nations regards Israel as the occupying power in Gaza and had called on Israel to end its siege, which is a violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1860.

It is interesting to read that Berg’s boss until last year was James Harding, an ex-Murdoch editor and self-proclaimed Israel supporter – a strange choice for a supposedly non-partisan head of BBC News. Almost as strange as the appointment around the same time of ex-Labour minister and former Chairman of Labour Friends of Israel James Purnell as director of strategy at this beacon of impartiality. Purnell is still there.

Kushner to “Israel” Soon

By Staff, Agencies 

US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner is heading to the apartheid “Israeli” entity soon amid political unrest. This comes as “Israel” is facing a possible second election, less than two months after Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu was reelected. 

Netanyahu has 48 hours to form a new government, after “Israel’s” parliament Monday passed a preliminary motion to dissolve. If that bill passes when it comes up for a vote Wednesday, “Israel” would have to hold new elections, less than two months after its election. Netanyahu is expected to be indicted on corruption charges.

Kushner, along with Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt and Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook, leave Tuesday, as well as Rabat and Amman, according to a White House official. Kushner will then continue to Montreux, France, and London, where he’ll join Trump’s state visit to the United Kingdom.

A State Department spokesperson told reporters in a briefing Tuesday that she wasn’t sure what Hook’s role is on the trip, but would get back to reporters with more details later.

The White House has yet to roll out its complete “Deal of the Century” scheme, but is expected to soon.

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Political Analyst: US-Iran War Highly Unlikely

By Nour Rida

Tehran – US President Donald Trump keeps sending warmongering messages to everyone. He threatens China with trade war on tech, he threatens Cuba with “full” embargo on Venezuela, threatens Russia over Venezuela too, he his ‘war maniac’ advisor John Bolton, as North Korea calls him, sends threats after Pyongyang’s missile tests.

Tensions started to mount between Tehran and Washington in May 2018, when Trump pulled his country out of the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action [JCPOA], and re-imposed harsh sanctions against the Islamic Republic in defiance of global criticisms.

The US seems to maximize the suffering of the Iranian people by the harsh sanctions it imposes. And its policies of belligerence and aggression are not new. The US has been supporting terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and Daesh [Arabic acronym for “ISIS” / “ISIL”], supported Saddam Hussein in his war against Iran in the 80s; it imposed starvation on Yemeni civilians including women and children, destroyed Libya and Iraq. This has been a general pattern Washington has been pursuing. Trump uses genocidal language however Western mainstream media is not outrageous on such language. Now amid all this, chances of war are close to zero, because the US knows the consequences well.

Also, with Trump’s unstable and fluctuating policies, he seems to be on a mission of trial and error to see what might work and bring Iran to its knees, but Iranians think that is way too far from reality. One day its war, another day “we need regime change”, then later a “call me if you want” message, then threats again and finally a “we seek no regime change” in Iran statement.

By the beginning of May, Trump made threats against the Islamic Republic of Iran, in what sounded like hitting the drums of war. However, the Iranian side made it clear that no one threatens them and that if there would be a major loser from an all-inclusive war in the region it would be the US and its allies.

Last week, as escalation increased, Trump posted an anti-Iran tweet after a Sunday night rocket attack on the Green Zone of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, where the Iraqi government’s administrative buildings and foreign missions, including the US embassy, are located. The Trump administration rushed to accuse Iran of being the perpetrator.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has warned US President Donald Trump to avoid threatening Iranians, advising him to try respect as it is the only approach to the Iranian nation, which may bear fruit.

Just today, Trump said during a news conference with Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo “I really believe that Iran would like to make a deal, and I think that’s very smart of them, and I think that’s a possibility to happen.”

“It has a chance to be a great country with the same leadership,” Trump said. “We aren’t looking for regime change — I just want to make that clear. We are looking for no nuclear weapons.”

Political Analyst: US-Iran War Highly Unlikely

Touching on the matter, Political analyst and Tehran University Professor Dr. Mohamad Marandi told al-Ahed news he thinks war is highly unlikely, and the view in Tehran is also the same for a number of reasons. “First of all, if there is a war, then all the oil and gas installations in the Gulf will be destroyed in a cross fire. The oil tankers too in Oman and the Gulf will be destroyed, the Strait of Hormuz will be shut but I think that would be a minor issue compared to the long-term damage that will be caused to all the facilities, installations, and infrastructure in the region which will take many years to repair.”

He went on to say that “There will be no oil and gas flowing out from the region for many years. On the other I hand, I think that the US will be driven out of countries like Iraq and Afghanistan because Iran’s friends in the region will not accept a war on Iran.”

Political analyst Dr. Marandi also said “I would assume that oil exports of Iraq would also be a major problem because of the conflict with the Americans. So, it’s the issue of American forces being driven out of the region by opponents of American aggression. The US would be blamed globally; it will bring about a major global depression, something that we have not seen in modern time, the equivalent of which we have not seen in modern history.”

Further explaining what the situation would be liked, Dr. Marandi said “We will have millions of people on the move, with millions of refugees moving towards Europe since countries like Saudi Arabia and the Emirates would not last long without oil exports because they are completely dependent. People in other countries also will be on the move and there will be an economic and humanitarian catastrophe and the Americans cannot win the war, they create major damage to Iran. But, the self-inflicted wounds would mean it would be a major defeat for the United States, an unprecedented defeat for the United States.”

The expert concluded saying “These reasons combined; Iran’s formidable military capabilities, Iran’s many allies across the region, and US relative isolation across the world that makes these factors even more devastating, meaning the destruction of the infrastructure, the flow of refugees and the expulsion of the Americans from the region.”

Bottom line; this is not something new for the US regime. Trump is not the first person to make threatening statements; Hillary Clinton once threatened that the US could obliterate Iran. Trump is proving to Iran and the world that the Trump regime is not an entity that the Iranians can negotiate with. Trump’s policies are extreme, his positions are constantly shifting and changing, and of course he does not abide by any agreement that he does not like.

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The Unfulfilled Urge to Undo Pakistan

See Behind The Veil

Pakistan is currently facing a massive thrust from imperial West and Hindu imperialism, not to forget their less overtly involved partners in crime, Israel and Kabul’s puppet regime, towards a perceived break-up of sorts that shall render it divided into varied ethnic entities allegedly giving life to the myths of ‘Greater Baluchistan’ and ‘Greater Pakhtunistan’ in due course of time.  A formula which is essentially an extension of the game played by imperial forces at the time of India’s partition in 1947 – sore points were deliberately left behind as enduring legacies of dispute in Baluchistan, the North-western Frontier province and Kashmir – regions that were crucial to the West’s positioning in the Great Game in the long-term.

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التنبه لمناورة الزمن وروزنامة الاستحقاقات مع ساترفيلد

مايو 29, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– حتى الآن يبدو أن ما حمله معاون وزير الخارجية الأميركية ديفيد ساترفيلد إلى المسؤولين اللبنانيين حول التفاوض لترسيم الحدود البرية والبحرية إيجابياً ويبدو استجابة مفاجئة للرؤية اللبنانية التي تستطيع القول إنها حققت انتصاراً تكتيكياً مهماً بفعل التضامن السياسي والرئاسي من جهة وقوة لبنان الرادعة التي وفّرتها المقاومة وفق معادلة الغاز بالغاز. من جهة أخرى وبفعل الحاجة الإسرائيلية الماسّة لطمأنة أسواق الاستثمار العالمية في مجال النفط والغاز إلى مستقبل تعاملها في المنصات الإسرائيلية تحت سقف اتفاق يوفر الأمن للاستثمارات والأعمال من جهة موازية.

– المفاوضات لم تبدأ بعد وقبول التلازم بين المسارَيْن البرّي والبحري من جهة وقبول الرعاية الأمميّة من جهة أخرى موافقتان إسرائيليتان وأميركيتان تثيران الريبة ولا يجب وضعهما حصراً في دائرة النجاح اللبناني والحاجة الإسرائيلية والقلق من معادلات الردع. فأميركا و»إسرائيل» في قلب حربين متلازمتين واحدة بوجه إيران وثانية لتسويق صفقة القرن ويجب التنبه لحاجة واشنطن وتل أبيب لتحييد لبنان وقوة مقاومته، خصوصاً عن هاتين الحربين. فالمقاومة هي القيمة المضافة الرئيسية في جبهة المواجهة التي تنتصب خصوصاً بوجه مشروع صفقة القرن، وملف التوطين وتصفية حق عودة اللاجئين الفلسطينيين قضية لبنانية لا تقل أهمية عن مفاوضات الترسيم، والموقف اللبناني الجامع مع المقاومة في مواجهة صفقة القرن سيُسهم في كشف حدود المناورة الأميركية الإسرائيلية، بينما الابتعاد عن المقاومة في هذه المواجهة ومطالبتها بالتهدئة فسيعني تشجيعاً لمناورة أميركية إسرائيلية تستثمر تضييع الوقت التفاوضي لتمرير العمليات التمهيدية في صفقة القرن، ومن ضمنها إنهاء حق العودة بغياب المقاومة، وتغييبها بشراكة لبنانية.

– التنبّه هنا يعني أن يضع اللبنانيون الواقفون في صف المسؤوليّة التفاوضيّة والذين لا يوافقون المقاومة في كل خياراتها في حساباتهم أن شلّ قدرة المقاومة على تظهير موقفها من الحربين الكبيرتين المتصلتين بمستقبل المنطقة يصب في خدمة «إسرائيل» لا المصلحة اللبنانية، وأن الزمن الذي ستستهلكه المفاوضات سيكون مؤشراً على حقيقة النيات الإسرائيلية الأميركية، حيث يفترض إذا صدقت التحليلات والقراءات عن تراجع إسرائيلي برعاية أميركية بخلفية الحسابات المصلحية التي يمليها الإسراع في استخراج النفط والغاز أن تسير المفاوضات بسرعة، وأن تفضح كل مماطلة في الشكليات والتفاصيل وروزنامة التفاوض ومواعيد جلساته وجود نية أخرى لها عنوان واحد، هو التفاوض لأجل التفاوض، كما كان حال المفاوضات الإسرائيلية مع السلطة الفلسطينية، ولذلك فإن أولى مهام الجانب اللبناني وضع روزنامة افتراضيّة لكل مرحلة من المفاوضات، ترسم خطاً أحمر عندما يكون الوقت المستغرق قد تخطّى التوقعات المفترضة، سواء لمرحلة المفاوضات التحضيريّة قبل الجلسة الأولى، أو مفاوضات الشكليّات والترتيبات، أو المفاوضات التقنية الجغرافية، والمفاوضات القانونية الاقتصادية، وصولاً إلى المفاوضات الختامية، وفي كل مرة يتم تخطي الزمن الافتراضي المتوقع يجب التساؤل حول الخلفية، والتدقيق بحجم قضايا الخلاف بقياس المصلحة النفطية الإسرائيلية وأضرارها، وما يستحق بالمقابل تحمل هذه الأضرار، ماذا عساه يكون؟

– على ضفة موازية يجب أن يضع لبنان أمامه ميزاني قياس ومراقبة، واحد يتصل بمسار التوتر الأميركي الإيراني في ظل تهديد إيران بالخروج من الاتفاق النووي خلال ستين يوماً تنتهي مطلع شهر تموز، والحديث الأميركي عن القلق من قدرة إيران على امتلاك ما يكفي لإنتاج قنبلة نووية خلال شهرين أو ستة شهور إذا عادت للتخصيب المرتفع لليورانيوم، ومراقبة إيقاع الحركة التفاوضية الأميركية الإسرائيلية مع هذه المواعيد. وبالمقابل مؤتمر البحرين الخاص بصفقة القرن وما سيليه من مواعيد ترتبط بها وبحلقاتها المتسلسلة، وجعل تقاطعات الروزنامتين مؤشراً للمفاوض اللبناني ومرجعيته السياسية والأمنية في قياس الجدية من المناورة في الحركة الأميركية والإسرائيلية.

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Off-duty Israeli Soldier Caught on Video Torching Palestinian Farms

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A video released by the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem shows a group of Israeli settlers attacking Palestinian villagers and setting their farms on fire on May 17th – and today, the group managed to identify one of the arsonists in the video as an off-duty Israeli soldier.

According to B’Tselem, on Friday, 17 May 2019, Israeli paramilitary settlers torched Palestinian farmers’ fields in Burin and ‘Asirah al-Qibliyah. In both villages, the settlers threw stones at the residents’ homes.

In ‘Asirah al-Qibliyah, where the area is controlled by military watchtowers, a settler even fired shots in the air. Soldiers nearby did not arrest the attackers and prevented the Palestinians from approaching their burning land.

The Israeli military followed the attack with a public statement containing the absurd and easily disproved claim that *Palestinians* had started the fires – a version of events that was then unquestioningly repeated by the Israeli and US media.

The attack took place about a kilometer away from the Giv’at Ronen settlement point, and the Israeli paramilitary settlers involved in the attack apparently came from the settlement of Yitzhar.

The fire-setting by the Israeli soldier is especially disturbing given that it took place in the midst of an extremely dry season in Israel and Palestine, with wildfires having burned hundreds of acres in Israel over the past several weeks, and burn bans in place across the country to try to prevent the spread of any more fires. Setting fires intentionally during such a climate and atmosphere could have a devastating impact and would normally have severe consequences.

Given the Israeli military’s record of failing to prosecute Israeli soldiers who commit crimes against Palestinians – even when those crimes are documented clearly on video – Palestinians impacted by the crime on May 17th say that they have little faith that the perpetrators in this case will be prosecuted.

According to the Israeli paper Ha’aretz, two separate Israeli security services verified to their reporters that the arsonist was an off-duty soldier. However, the Israeli military claimed that the incident would be handled by the Israeli police, and the Israeli police claimed that it would be handled by the military. Neither the army nor the police have arrested the perpetrator, although he was clearly identified and both forces confirmed his identity.

 

israel’s Role In 9/11

 

Israel’s Role In 9/11

Philip Giraldi – The Unz Review May 28, 2019

The tale of 9/11 will just not go away, largely because it is clear to anyone who reads the lengthy 9/11 Commission Report that many issues that should have been subject to inquiry were ignored for what would appear to be political reasons. The George W. Bush Administration quite obviously did not want to assume any blame for what had happened and that bias also extended to providing cover for U.S. “allies,” most particularly Saudi Arabia and Israel. Those who have sought the truth about 9/11 have been persistent in their attempts to find out information that was suppressed but they have been blocked repeatedly in spite of numerous FOIA requests.

Now, eighteen years after the event, there has been something like a breakthrough, penetrating the wall of silence erected by the government. FBI reports on the possible Israeli role in 9/11 were released on May 7th and they serve to support speculation by myself and other former intelligence officers that Israel, at a minimum, had detailed prior knowledge of what was to take place. More than that, Israeli intelligence officers working in the United States might well have enabled certain aspects of the conspiracy.

To recount some of what is already known and suspected, one should first examine the 2016 release of a heavily edited and redacted 28 pages long annex to the 9/11 Commission Report that explored the Saudi Arabian role in the terrorist attack . The section concluded that the Saudi government may have played a direct role in 9/11 by assisting two of the hijackers, including a dry run exercise intended to learn how to get into a plane’s cockpit. There was also considerable evidence suggesting that wealthy Saudis and even members of the Royal Family had been supporting and funding al-Qaeda.

But far exceeding the Saudi role is the involvement of the Israeli intelligence service Mossad, which was not subject to any serious inquiry or investigation by U.S. intelligence or police agencies. Israel, in spite of obvious involvement in 9/11, was not included in the 9/11 Commission Report despite the existence of an enormous Israeli intelligence operation freely working in the United States that was known to the FBI. Some of those Mossad officers were notably filmed celebrating as the Twin Towers were burning and collapsing.

In the year 2001 Israel was running a massive spying operation through a number of cover companies in New Jersey, Florida and also on the west coast that served as spying mechanisms for Mossad officers. The effort was supported by the Mossad Station in Washington D.C. and included a large number of volunteers, the so-called “art students” who traveled around the U.S. selling various products at malls and outdoor markets. The FBI was aware of the numerous Israeli students who were routinely overstaying their visas and some in the Bureau certainly believed that they were assisting their country’s intelligence service in some way, but it proved difficult to actually link the students to undercover operations, so they were regarded as a minor nuisance and were normally left to the tender mercies of the inspectors at the Bureau of Customs and Immigration.

American law enforcement was also painfully aware that the Israelis were running more sophisticated intelligence operations inside the United States, many of which were focused on Washington’s military capabilities and intentions. Some specialized intelligence units concentrated on obtaining military and dual use technology. It was also known that Israeli spies had penetrated the phone systems of the U.S. government, to include those at the White House.

In its annual classified counterespionage review, the FBI invariably places Israel at the top for “friendly” countries that spy on the U.S. In fact, the pre-9/11 Bureau did its best to stay on top of the problem, but it rarely received any political support from the Justice Department and White House if an espionage case involved Israelis. By one estimate, more than 100 such cases were not prosecuted for political reasons. Any Israeli caught in flagrante would most often be quietly deported and most Americans who were helping Israel were let off with a slap on the wrist.

But the hands-off attitude towards Israel shifted dramatically when, on September 11, 2001, a New Jersey housewife saw something from the window of her apartment building, which overlooked the World Trade Center. She watched as the buildings burned and crumbled but also noted something strange. Three young men were kneeling on the roof of a white transit van parked by the water’s edge, making a movie in which they featured themselves high fiving and laughing in front of the catastrophic scene unfolding behind them. The woman wrote down the license plate number of the van and called the police, who responded quickly and soon both the local force and the FBI began looking for the vehicle, which was subsequently seen by other witnesses in various locations along the New Jersey waterfront, its occupants “celebrating and filming.”

The license plate number revealed that the van belonged to a New Jersey registered company called Urban Moving Systems. At 4 p.m. the vehicle was spotted and pulled over. Five men between the ages of 22 and 27 years old emerged and were detained at gunpoint and handcuffed. They were all Israelis. One of them had $4,700 in cash hidden in his sock and another had two foreign passports. Bomb sniffing dogs reacted to the smell of explosives in the van, which had very little actual moving equipment inside.

According to the initial police report, the driver identified as Sivan Kurzberg, stated “We are Israeli. We are not your problem. Your problems are our problems. The Palestinians are the problem.” The four other passengers were Sivan’s brother Paul, Yaron Shmuel, Oded Ellner and Omer Marmari. The men were detained at the Bergen County jail in New Jersey before being transferred the FBI’s Foreign Counterintelligence Section, which handles allegations of spying.

After the arrest, the FBI obtained a warrant to search Urban Moving System’s Weehawken, N.J., offices. Papers and computers were seized. The company owner Dominick Suter, also an Israeli, answered FBI questions but when a follow-up interview was set up a few days later it was learned that he had fled the country for Israel, putting both his business and home up for sale. The office space and warehouse were abandoned. It was later learned that Suter has been associated with at least fourteen businesses in the United States, mostly in New Jersey and New York but also in Florida. Suter and his wife Omit Levinson Suter were the owners of 1 Stop Cleaner located in Wellington Florida and Dominick was also associated with Basia McDonnell, described as a Polish “holocaust survivor,” as a business partner in yet another business called Value Ad. Florida was a main focus for the Israeli intelligence operation in the U.S. that was directed against Arabs.

The five Israelis were among 140 Israelis arrested after 9/11, most of whom had military backgrounds, including some who were trained in “intelligence.” The five were held in Brooklyn, initially on charges relating to visa fraud. FBI interrogators questioned them for more than two months. Several were held in solitary confinement so they could not communicate with each other and two of them were given repeated polygraph exams, which they failed when claiming that they were nothing more than students working summer jobs. The two men that the FBI focused on most intensively were believed to be Mossad staff officers and the other three were volunteers helping with surveillance.

The Israelis were not exactly cooperative, but the FBI concluded from documents obtained at their office in Weehawken that they were targeting Arabs in New York and New Jersey, most particularly in the Paterson N.J. area, which has the second largest Muslim population in the U.S. They were particularly interested in local groups possibly linked to Hamas and Hezbollah as well as in charities that might be used for fund raising. The FBI also concluded that the Israelis had actually monitored the activities of at least two of the 9/11 hijackers.

To be sure, working on an intelligence operation does not necessarily imply participation in either the planning or execution of something like 9/11, but there are Israeli fingerprints all over the place, with cover companies and intelligence personnel often intersecting with locations frequented by the hijackers.

Apart from the interrogations of the five men from Weehawken, the U.S. government has apparently never sought to find out what else the Israelis might have known or were up to in September 2011. There are a lot of dots that might well have been connected once upon a time, but the trail has grown cold. Police records in New Jersey and New York where the men were held have disappeared and FBI interrogation reports have been inaccessible. Media coverage of the case also died, though the five were referred to in the press as the “dancing Israelis” and by some, more disparagingly, as the “dancing Shlomos.”

Inevitably, the George W. Bush White House intervened. After 71 days in detention, the five Israelis were released from prison by Attorney General John Ashcroft, put on a plane, and deported. Two of the men later spoke about their unpleasant experience in America on an Israeli talk show, one explaining that their filming the fall of the Twin Towers was to “document the event.” In 2004 the five men sued the United States government for damages, alleging “that their detention was illegal and that their civil rights were violated, suffering racial slurs, physical violence, religious discrimination, rough interrogations, deprivation of sleep, and many other offenses.” They were represented by Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, who in the previous year had founded the Shurat HaDin Israel Law Center which seeks to bankrupt groups that Israel considers to be “terrorists.” Shurat HaDin is closely tied to the Israeli government.

Now it is just possible that the Urban Moving Israelis were indeed uninvolved in 9/11 but nevertheless working for Mossad, which the Israeli government even subsequently admitted, but the new evidence suggests that the Israelis almost certainly had considerable prior knowledge and were likely involved in what developed. The new information reveals that minutes after the first plane struck the World Trade Center, five Israelis had taken up position in the parking lot of the Doric Apartment Complex in Union City, New Jersey, where they took pictures and filmed the attacks while also celebrating the fall of the towers and “high fiving.” One eyewitness interviewed by the Bureau had seen the Israelis’ van circling the building parking at 8:00 a.m. that day, more than 40 minutes prior to the attack, indicating prior knowledge of what was about to happen.

The eyewitness testimony is supported by copies of photos taken by the men that the FBI seized. The photo reproductions were obtained via a FOIA request made by a private citizen and are of poor quality, deliberately made so by the FBI to conceal faces and other details. They constitute only 14 of over seventy photos taken by the Israelis. Nevertheless, they clearly demonstrate that a celebration was going on. One photo, intriguingly, shows Sivan Kurzberg holding a lit lighter in front of the Manhattan Skyline on September 10th, one day before 9/11. It was apparently taken at the Doric Complex on a reconnoitering visit made on that day and suggests that Kurzberg was simulating the attack on the towers on the following day.

Why would the Israelis do it? Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described 9/11 initially as “a good thing.” He was later quoted as saying somewhat more expansively “We are benefiting from one thing, and that is the attack on the Twin Towers and Pentagon, and the American struggle in Iraq.” To be sure, 9/11 was a gift to Israel and it is a gift that keeps on giving. America is at war in a number of Muslim countries and its troops blanket the Middle East, to include a base in Israel dedicated to the defense of that country. It is all a result of the Global War on Terror and the GWOT started with 9/11. And just maybe it was a fire that was ignited by Israel.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org

 

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Brexit is All About Making Israel Greater

May 26, 2019  /  Gilad Atzmon

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by Gilad Atzmon

Britain is in a state of political turmoil. The government and the main opposition party have both lost their way and, together, they have completely lost the trust of the people. In the last few weeks we have witnessed a landslide exodus from both the Tory and Labour parties to the slightly more rational, principled and patriotic alternatives: the truly conservative wandered to the Brexit Party and the remainers, who previously voted Labour, migrated to the more humane Liberal Democrats.

Brits are critically divided over Brexit. It is fair to say that most do not fully grasp what Brexit is anymore. They were deliberately not informed of the political discussion over Brexit and what it would mean for the future. Brits feel betrayed by the political class and in truth, they have been subjected to gross and treacherous treatment by their politicians and media. Brits are not aware of the centrality of Israel and its interests that is at the core of the Brexit debate.

In February, I published a translation of a Ynet article which reported that Israel had located itself as post-Brexit Britain’s gateway to the world: “Once out of the EU, Britain will have to sign separate trade agreements with each state, and Israel will be the first,” Ynet wrote. Just to remove any confusion, it added “Israel has become Britain’s strategic ally.” And of course, “the British government totally disregard the boycott campaign against Israel. On a political level, they boycotted the boycott.” Britain under Theresa May has been reduced into a colony of Israel’s. Brits have become increasingly aware that 80% of their Tory MPs are members of the Conservative Friends of Israel, which is a foreign pressure group dedicated to the interests of another state.

Those who have been puzzled by the insane institutional Israel lobby campaign against Corbyn and the Labour party  (BODJewish ChronicleCAA, etc.) can now figure out what the motivation behind it was: Corbyn in 10 Downing Street might well interfere with Israel’s plans for post-Brexit Britain.

The truth is starting to unveil itself. Theresa May, a staunch Zionist, has been working tirelessly to bring about a Brexit ‘deal.’ The Ynet article suggests that such a deal could work for Israel. Brexit enthusiasts smelled a rat, they could see that May’s Brexit offering didn’t fit with what they had in mind. But they couldn’t see the full picture since the prominence of Israel in post-Brexit plans was never discussed in the British press.

In September, 2018 Barry Grossman, the Tel Aviv British embassy’s Director of International Trade, used the Ynet platform to explain to Israelis why Brexit is good for Israel. “Israel and Israelis can reap huge benefits from Brexit,” Grossman wrote. “Since the Brexit referendum, the British government has declared that Israel is one of its priority markets. The UK is already Israel’s second largest trading partner in the world, and annual trade between the two countries is worth well over $7 billion.” No one in the British media cared to delve into the significance of Israeli-British relations to Brexit. The topic has never been mentioned in the British national media.

But remainers are in no better position. They are also clueless about the actual corrosive elements that divide their Kingdom and pull it into chaos. Corbyn and his dysfunctional party did nothing to clarify the situation. How is it possible that no one in the Labour Party has been brave enough to touch upon the centrality of Israel in the current Brexit debate? How is it that, despite the revelation in Israel’s biggest news outlet that Brexit was designed to make Israel great again, not one brave Labour MP, including the so-called ‘leader,’ could say so out loud? The answer is obvious: like the Conservative party, Labour is an occupied zone. It is dominated by fear of the Israel lobby, Jewish pressure groups and the compromised and Zionised British media.

This alone is devastating, but unfortunately, the centrality of Israel in the current Brexit crisis goes much deeper.

Though it is clear to most Brits that Brexit exposes a clear rift between an emerging nationalist ideology and progressive philosophy: not many realise that both contemporary nationalism and progressive philosophy are deeply inspired by two rival Jewish political schools of thought.

For Right-wing agitators, the Alt Right,  anti-Muslims and anti-immigration activists, Israel and its current prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, have become a major source of inspiration. Similarly, it is Jewish progressive ideology that arouses pro-immigration campaigners, open-borders enthusiasts and multi culturalists globally and especially in the UK and USA. It is the pervasiveness of Jewish ideologies within both Right-wing nationalist and New Left discourses that sustains the dominance of the Israel lobby and Jewish pressure groups within British political parties, media and academia.

My study of Jewish ID politics suggests that as in America, Britain isn’t just influenced by one Jewish lobby or another, rather the entire British political, cultural and spiritual spectrum has been reduced into an internal Jewish debate.  Brits struggle to see it because their media and academia work tirelessly to conceal this development. I guess that some must believe that it is safer (for reason to do with public safety and community relations) to keep nations in the dark.

Tommy Robinson, who managed to excite and mobilise thousands of Brits in the run-up to the European Parliament election by spreading an anti-Islam message, is an ardent Zionist who supports Israel and is openly supported by pro-Israel right-wing elements and members of the British Jewish community.  The British media is hostile to Robinson and never misses any opportunity to paint him as a vile racist, but his connections with the Jewish State are kept hidden from the public.

However, Robinson is just an example. The many Brits who support a hard Brexit are inspired by the desire to reinstate rootedness, to close borders, to revive past British glory. It is inspired by Netanyahu’s policies. Like Donald Trump’s unoriginal promise to erect a wall on the Mexican border, many Brits would like to see their kingdom protected by an Israeli-style anti-migrant barrier.

In my recent book, Being in Time – A Post-Political Manifesto, I stress that while the old, good Left promised to unite us in a fight against capitalism, regardless of our gender, religion, skin colour  or ethnicity, it was the New Left that taught us to speak ‘as a’: as a Jew, as Gay, as Black, and so on. Instead of being one people united in the struggle for justice and equality, within the post-political realm the so-called ‘left’ is pushing us toward endless identity battles. This has practically managed to turn societies into the twelve tribes of Israel. The Identitarian revolution was inspired by a few Jewish ideological and philosophical schools including, most importantly, the Frankfurt School. It is actually Jewish Identitarian philosophy and the success of Jewish Identitarianism that inspires most, if not all, contemporary Identitarian politics. It is not surprising that it also motivates the contemporary Labour party and dominates the US Democratic Party.

It has been established that a chief funder of the Identitarian revolution is financier George Soros and his Open Society Foundations. Soros may genuinely believe in the Identitarian future: It is cosmopolitan, it is global, it defies borders and states, but far more significantly, it also functions to divert attention from Wall Street, the City of London and capitalist crimes: as long as Identitarians fight each other, no one bothers to fight Wall Street and corporate tyranny. Soros didn’t invent this strategy. It has long been named ‘divide and conquer.’

British people certainly remember that it was Soros who used the pages of The Guardian to warn Brits of the inevitable implications of Brexit. They may find themselves wondering why a Hungarian-American globalist financier interfered in their national affairs. Brits may have been puzzled when the same Guardian castigated Nigel Farage as an ‘anti-Semite’ for referring to Soros as “the biggest danger to the Western World.” But much more shocking is that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, known for his blunt opposition to banking and capitalism, endorsed a video that attributed ‘antisemitism’ to critics of Soros.

Jeremy Corbyn

@jeremycorbyn

Really important video which spells out the vile and destructive nature of antisemitic conspiracy theories.

3,585 people are talking about this

The above shows the depth of the spiritual, cultural and ideological influence of Jewish politics in Britain and in Brexit in particular. While Israel is the prototype of a nationalist and patriotic system for Brexiters, the remainers who support globalisation, immigration and multiculturalism are emulating the Jewish Diaspora’s rival progressive position. These two contradictory Jewish schools of thought are deeply entrenched within each of the two opposing ideologies tearing Britain apart.

Soon Brits will have to choose whether they prefer to be nationalists and xenophobes like the Israelis or as cosmopolitan, multicultural and assimilated as the Jewish progressive Diaspora. Or Britain could choose a third route. The Kingdom can liberate itself by looking inward and deciding what is it about Britain, about its history, culture and heritage that they like and want to reinstate.


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