Iran’s Shamkhani: US Acted Deceptively Towards Issue of Peace in Afghanistan

Nov 10, 2021

Iran’s Shamkhani: US Acted Deceptively Towards Issue of Peace in Afghanistan

By Staff, Agencies

Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council [SNSC] Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani said the US has acted deceptively towards the issue of peace in Afghanistan, stressing that it has no plan for peace in the country.

Addressing the Delhi Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan on Wednesday, Shamkhani spoke about the previous summits hosted by Tehran.

A number of issues related to Afghanistan such as tackling the threat of terrorism, and helping to develop the country were discussed in the summits, he said, adding that all participants agreed that peace, security, and prosperity in Afghanistan are in the common interest of the regional countries.

Peace is the general will of all people in Afghanistan, Shamkhani also noted, adding, “But the United States acted deceptively towards the issue of peace in Afghanistan.”

Twenty years ago, the United States occupied Afghanistan under the pretext of fighting against terrorism and establishing peace in this country, he said.

However, what Americans brought to Afghanistan was the growing terrorism, drug trafficking, migration, poverty, and massacre of a large number of innocent people in Afghanistan.

Eventually, the United States was forced to flee the country with a tragic defeat, he added.

Today, the Islamic Republic of Iran, regional countries, and Afghan parties are trying to move toward programs that are in the benefit of all oppressed people in Afghanistan

The United Nations also should focus on consulting and assisting Afghanistan in this field, Shamkhani stressed.

According to the Iranian official, the attempt of some countries to transfer takfiri terrorist groups into Afghanistan, poverty, and the humanitarian crisis, as well as the immigration crisis, are three major problems that today Afghanistan is facing.

In the end, Iran’s Secretary of Supreme National Security Council stressed that everyone must make a concerted effort to establish an inclusive government in Afghanistan, to help solve the problems of the Afghan people, and to address the humanitarian crisis in this country.

In this regard, Iran is ready to provide all its facilities such as communication routes and port facilities, including Chabahar Port, to solve this problem.

Forming an inclusive national government with the participation of all ethnic groups is the way to save Afghanistan, he said, underscoring that Iran will also spare no effort for the benefit of the Afghan government and people.

Dr. Roland Chrisjohn on the barbaric “residential schools” & Canada’s coverup of murder & torture within

moi

 

Eva Bartlett

After I wrote about media finally covering the horrific issue of “residential schools”, I was contacted by Roland Chrisjohn, who is Onyota’a:ka of the Haudenaushaunee (Oneida of the Six Nations Confederacy), originally from the Oneida of the Thames reserve in southern Ontario and now living/working in New Brunswick.Chrisjohn is a clinical psychologist and a university Professor. He heads the Native Studies department at St. Thomas University in Fredericton.

He author of numerous studies and books, notably “The Circle Game: Shadows and Substance in the Indian Residential School Experience in Canada.”

Related:

“The Circle Game: Shadows and Substance in the Indian Residential School Experience in Canada.” (also here)

-Media is FINALLY covering immense crimes against indigenous peoples in Canada that were known about DECADES ago. So why now?

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/528360-crimes-indigenous-canada-children/

The long and winding multipolar road

July 01, 2021

The West’s ‘rules-based order’ invokes rulers’ authority; Russia-China say it’s time to return to law-based order

The long and winding multipolar road

By Pepe Escobar with permission and first posted at Asia Times

We do live in extraordinary times.

On the day of the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), President Xi Jinping, in Tiananmen square, amid all the pomp and circumstance, delivered a stark geopolitical message:

The Chinese people will never allow foreign forces to intimidate, oppress or subjugate them. Anyone who tries to do this will find themselves on a collision course with a large steel wall forged by more than 1.4 billion Chinese.

I have offered a concise version of the modern Chinese miracle – which has nothing to do with divine intervention, but “searching truth from facts” (copyright Deng Xiaoping), inspired by a solid cultural and historical tradition.

The “large steel wall” evoked by Xi now permeates a dynamic “moderately prosperous society” – a goal achieved by the CCP on the eve of the centennial. Lifting over 800 million people out of poverty is a historical first – in every aspect.

As in all things China, the past informs the future. This is all about xiaokang – which may be loosely translated as “moderately prosperous society”.

The concept first appeared no less than 2,500 years ago, in the classic Shijing (“The Book of Poetry”). The Little Helmsman Deng, with his historical eagle eye, revived it in 1979, right at the start of the “opening up” economic reforms.

Now compare the breakthrough celebrated in Tiananmen – which will be interpreted all across the Global South as evidence of the success of a Chinese model for economic development – with footage being circulated of the Taliban riding captured T-55 tanks across impoverished villages in northern Afghanistan.

History Repeating: this is something I saw with my own eyes over twenty years ago.

The Taliban now control nearly the same amount of Afghan territory they did immediately before 9/11. They control the border with Tajikistan and are closing in on the border with Uzbekistan.

Exactly twenty years ago I was deep into yet another epic journey across Karachi, Peshawar, the Pakistan tribal areas, Tajikistan and finally the Panjshir valley, where I interviewed Commander Masoud – who told me the Taliban at the time were controlling 85% of Afghanistan.

Three weeks later Masoud was assassinated by an al-Qaeda-linked commando disguised as “journalists” – two days before 9/11. The empire – at the height of the unipolar moment – went into Forever Wars on overdrive, while China – and Russia – went deep into consolidating their emergence, geopolitically and geoeconomically.

We are now living the consequences of these opposed strategies.

That strategic partnership

President Putin has just spent three hours and fifty minutes answering non-pre-screened questions, live, from Russian citizens during his annual ‘Direct Line’ session. The notion that Western “leaders” of the Biden, BoJo, Merkel and Macron kind would be able to handle something even remotely similar, non-scripted, is laughable.

The key takeaway: Putin stressed US elites understand that the world is changing but still want to preserve their dominant position. He illustrated it with the recent British caper in Crimea straight out of a Monty Python fail, a “complex provocation” that was in fact Anglo-American: a NATO aircraft had previously conducted a reconnaissance flight. Putin: “It was obvious that the destroyer entered [Crimean waters] pursuing military goals.”

Earlier this week Putin and Xi held a videoconference. One of the key items was quite significant: the extension of the China-Russia Treaty of Good Neighborliness and Friendly Cooperation, originally signed 20 years ago.

A key provision: “When a situation arises in which one of the contracting parties deems that…it is confronted with the threat of aggression, the contracting parties shall immediately hold contacts and consultations in order to eliminate such threats.”

This treaty is at the heart of what is now officially described – by Moscow and Beijing – as a “comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination for a new era”. Such a broad definition is warranted because this is a complex multi-level partnership, not an “alliance”, designed as a counterbalance and viable alternative to hegemony and unilateralism.

A graphic example is provided by the progressive interpolation of two trade/development strategies, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU), which Putin and Xi again discussed, in connection with the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), which was founded only three months before 9/11.

It’s no wonder that one of the highlights in Beijing this week were trade talks between the Chinese and four Central Asia “stans” – all of them SCO members.

“Law” and “rule”

The defining multipolarity road map has been sketched in an essay by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov that deserves careful examination.

Lavrov surveys the results of the recent G7, NATO and US-EU summits prior to Putin-Biden in Geneva:

These meetings were carefully prepared in a way that leaves no doubt that the West wanted to send a clear message: it stands united like never before and will do what it believes to be right in international affairs, while forcing others, primarily Russia and China, to follow its lead. The documents adopted at the Cornwall and Brussels summits cemented the rules-based world order concept as a counterweight to the universal principles of international law with the UN Charter as its primary source. In doing so, the West deliberately shies away from spelling out the rules it purports to follow, just as it refrains from explaining why they are needed.

As he dismisses how Russia and China have been labeled as “authoritarian powers” (or “illiberal”, according to the favorite New York-Paris-London mantra), Lavrov smashes Western hypocrisy:

While proclaiming the ‘right’ to interfere in the domestic affairs of other countries for the sake of promoting democracy as it understands it, the West instantly loses all interest when we raise the prospect of making international relations more democratic, including renouncing arrogant behavior and committing to abide by the universally recognized tenets of international law instead of ‘rules’.

That provides Lavrov with an opening for a linguistic analysis of “law” and “rule”:

In Russian, the words “law” and “rule” share a single root. To us, a rule that is genuine and just is inseparable from the law. This is not the case for Western languages. For instance, in English, the words “law” and “rule” do not share any resemblance. See the difference? “Rule” is not so much about the law, in the sense of generally accepted laws, as it is about the decisions taken by the one who rules or governs. It is also worth noting that “rule” shares a single root with “ruler,” with the latter’s meanings including the commonplace device for measuring and drawing straight lines. It can be inferred that through its concept of “rules” the West seeks to align everyone around its vision or apply the same yardstick to everybody, so that everyone falls into a single file.

In a nutshell: the road to multipolarity will not follow “ultimatums”. The G20, where the BRICS are represented, is a “natural platform” for “mutually accepted agreements”. Russia for its part is driving a Greater Eurasia Partnership. And a “polycentric world order” implies the necessary reform of the UN Security Council, “strengthening it with Asian, African and Latin American countries”.

Will the Unilateral Masters ply this road? Over their dead bodies: after all, Russia and China are “existential threats”. Hence our collective angst, spectators under the volcano.

Canada’s government is seeking to silence Canadian journalists at home and abroad with a draconian censorship bill

moi

 

Eva Bartlett

RT.com

As a Canadian journalist, I could be subject to a censorship bill which, if passed in Senate, means the government in Canada can effectively shadow-ban and censor my voice into oblivion, along with other dissenting voices.

After seeing his tweet on the issue of Bill C-10, recently passed in the House of Commons, I spoke with Canadian journalist Dan Dicks about this. He explained that the bill is being presented as being about Canada bringing Big Tech companies under the regulation of the CRTC (Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission), to have them display more Canadian content.

“But what people are missing,” he cautioned, “is that there were clauses put into this bill, protections for certain publishers and content creators that would protect people like myself and yourself.”

Those clauses, he said, were recently removed from the bill, leading many content-creating Canadians aware of the bill to worry they will be treated the same as a broadcaster or a programmer, subject to the regulations of the CRTC.

The bottom line is that, beyond the mumbo jumbo of the government, this is the latest attack on freedom of expression, and on dissent. 

“It really appears that it’s a backdoor to be able to control the free flow of information online, and to begin to silence voices that go against the status quo,” Dicks said, warning that fines for violators could follow.

“It’s not looking good for individual content creators. Anybody who has any kind of a voice or a significant audience, where they have the ability to affect the minds of the masses, to reach millions of people, they are going to be the ones who are on the chopping block moving forward.”

Names like James Corbett come to mind. Although based in Japan, as a Canadian he would be subject to the bill. And with his very harsh criticisms of many issues pertaining to the Canadian government, he is a thorn they would surely be happy to remove under the pretext of this bill.

Or Dicks, who likewise creates videos often critiquing Canadian government actions.

Or researcher Cory Morningstar, authors Maximilian Forte, Mark Taliano, Yves Engler, or outspoken physicist Denis Rancourt, to name a handful of dissenting voices. Agree or not with their opinions, they have the right to voice them.

Or myself. I’ve been very critical of Canada’s Covid policies and hypocrisy, as well as Canada’s whitewashing of terrorism in Syria, support to neo-Nazis in Ukraine, and unwavering support for Israel which is systematically murdering, starving, and imprisoning Palestinian civilians–including children.

An article on the Law & Liberty website, which describes itself as focussing on “the classical liberal tradition of law and how it shapes a society of free and responsible persons,” notes the bill enables “ample discretion to filter out content made by Canadians that doesn’t carry a desirable ideological posture and [to] prioritize content that does.”

The article emphasizes that the bill violates Canadians’ right to free expression, as well as “the right to express oneself through artistic and political creations, and the right to not be unfairly suppressed by a nebulous government algorithm.”

It noted that Canadians with large followings, like Jordan Peterson, Gad Saad and Steven Crowder, “each enjoy audiences which far exceed any cable television program.”

As with my examples above, these prominent Canadian voices likewise risk shadow-banning under this bill.

But, worse, there is another bill, C-36, that also portends heavy censorship: the “Reducing Online Harms” bill. This one not only involves censorship, but hefty fines and house arrests for violators

The same  Law & Liberty article notes, “Canada is also expected to follow the template of Germany’s NetzDG law, which mandates that platforms take down posts that are determined to constitute hate speech—which requires no actual demonstrated discrimination or potential harm, and is thus mostly subjective—within 24 hours or to face hefty fines. This obviously will incentivize platforms to remove content liberally and avoid paying up.”

The Canadian Constitution Foundation (CCF), rightly, contests this bill, noting, “the proposed definition of hate speech as speech that is ‘likely’ to foment detestation or vilification is vague and subjective.” 

Maxime Bernier, leader of the People’s Party of Canada, is likewise extremely critical of the bills.

Trudeau has made every issue about race, gender and religion since his election. Now he wants to criminalize everyone who disagrees with his tribalist vision.C-36 is the worst attack ever against free speech in Canada.https://t.co/6Z5EefmviP— Maxime Bernier (@MaximeBernier) June 25, 2021

The CCF points out the potential complete loss of Canadians’ fundamental rights with these bills.

It should be common sense that these bills are extremely dangerous to Canadians, however cloaked in talk of levelling playing fields and of combating hate speech they may be.

Syrian FM Dr Faisal Mikdad: western hypocrisy on humanitarian assistance

What makes the Palestinian catastrophe incomparable to any crime that has occurred for humanity?

May 15, 2021

By Batoul Sbeity

 Why is Palestine considered the core issue when it comes to human justice, such that Al-Quds Day- a day to raise awareness about the plight of all oppressed groups is done in the name and the sanctity of Al-Aqsa? 

1)  The perpetrating entities of the oppression:

The formation of Israel was a settler-colonial conspiracy project- the biggest of its kind in history that was founded by the hegemonic global ruling system solely to serve their interest. 

The reality is that the Zionists were hunters for sources of power in the world that could actualize their vision of a Jewish homeland, and wherever the imperialists place the Zionists, they will follow. 

During the beginning of the 20th century, imperial Britain was adamant about creating for itself an extension in the land of Palestine, which was specifically chosen due to the benefits of the strategic location and the history of the land that could be used as a justifying pretext to the world.

It is the responsibility of all of humanity to correct the biggest shame that have occurred. All nations need to apply pressure on their governments to sever ties with the occupying state and grant the right of return and compensation for all Palestinian citizens. The Zionists and their imperial masters weaponized the anti-semitism that existed within sections of the people and activated this into a slogan that was used to justify the containment of settler Jews in Palestine whilst blackmailing those resisting the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians into accepting this new reality.

The U.S.S.R was the first government to recognize the illegitimate establishment of Israel and sent a large number of settler Jews there, whilst the U.S. took over Britain’s role after rising to power in post-WWII, providing the bulk of financial, political, security, and military support to the occupying state- to the extent that its existence is purely dependent and linked to the U.S. 

Israel’s functional role is to act as a stick for the world superpower, namely the U.S., used in order to punish other entities in the region that fail to obey U.S. orders and for them to maintain a direct presence at the heart of the strategic Middle East (West Asia).

2)  The nature of the oppression: 

Israel is the only settler-colonial state existing today. This means the existence of the occupying Israeli settlers is predicated on the forced and violent removal of the land’s indigenous inhabitants prior to 1948.

During the 1948 Nakba, Israeli forces killed an estimated 13,000 Palestinians and forcibly evicted 700,000-1 million Palestinians from their homes and land. Five hundred and thirty-one (50%) of Palestinian villages were entirely depopulated and destroyed. 

The Nakba continues today. Palestinians are the largest and longest-suffering group of refugees in the world. One in three refugees worldwide is Palestinian and over 60% are registered for humanitarian assistance with the UN.
Within occupied Palestine, the occupying state has displayed no limits to their aggression in pursuit of their expansionist ideals while have not been held to any account for their crimes against humanity.  

3)  The magnitude of the oppression:

The perpetrators realize a great magnitude of direct force and violence is needed to prevent any rebellion movement since the thief understands the victim will resist with whatever they have, and they, therefore, seek to crush the spirit of this resistance. The occupying state has made it mandatory for every Israeli Jew to serve in the ‘IDF’, and they are indoctrinated from a young age to believe every Palestinian is a ‘terrorist’, whilst their survival is dependent on getting rid of the indigenous Palestinians. 

With over 2.5 million Palestinian’s living in the West Bank, an extremely densely populated region, Israel is not only seizing the best land and resources through annexing the territories and giving themselves false authority over the land, but they are striving to create an unbearable condition for the Palestinian’s living within, such that they become hopeless and would want to immigrate and abandon their own homeland. 

4)  Continuity of the oppression:

Since the financial and military existence of Israel is completely linked to the U.S., this oppression will continue until Israel loses its functional role due to the balance of powers that are increasingly not in the U.S.’s favor in the region.

Besides the axis of resistance and its proponents, all countries are turning a blind eye to the continuous oppression in Palestine, which is legitimized by the majority of the world since there is an overlap between their aims and they only account for what is in their interests. They seek to wipe the history of Palestine and grant legitimacy to Israel’s existence, although acknowledging its illegality should by any standards create an uprising.

It is the responsibility of all of humanity to correct the biggest shame that have occurred. All nations need to apply pressure on their governments to sever ties with the occupying state and grant the right of return and compensation for all Palestinian citizens. 

Russia Needs To Realize That EU Diplomacy Is Based On Deception

By Andrew Korybko

Source

Russia Needs To Realize That EU Diplomacy Is Based On Deception

Russia was left embarrassed after EU foreign policy chief Borrell suddenly flipped the script on his views about bilateral relations upon returning back to the bloc after what Foreign Minister Lavrov had previously thought was his constructive visit to Moscow just days earlier, though this incident might hopefully provide the long-overdue impetus for Russia to finally realize that EU diplomacy is based on deception and that no remarks from any of its representatives should ever be accepted at face value even if they were considered to be “candid” ones made behind closed doors.

Russia’s learning a much-needed and long-overdue lesson after being embarrassed by EU foreign policy chief Borrell following the surprise comments that he made after his visit to Moscow that Foreign Minister Lavrov had previously considered to have been a constructive exchange of ideas. Borrell flipped the script on what he had earlier implied during the press conference with his Russian counterpart just days prior by writing on his blog that he now believed that Moscow has no desire to improve relations with Brussels. The Russian Foreign Ministry responded by noting that he “had all opportunities to immediately deliver (his) personal evaluation” during the press conference, “No one restricted him either in time or in format”, but that “Perhaps, the EU foreign policy chief received explanations upon his arrival to Brussels on how to lay emphases, but in this case, it only proves who and how is shaping up the EU policies in reality.”

In other words, Russia feels deceived since it sincerely thought that its diplomatic counterparts’ views were sincere, especially those comparatively “candid” ones that were shared behind closed doors as is the norm in this profession. Nothing that Borrell said in public or private made Lavrov or his deputies think that he was giving them the runaround. After all, his public playing down of sanctions over Navalny and praise of Sputnik V were impressive goodwill gestures that they assumed he wouldn’t have done if he wasn’t sincere in his desire to improve bilateral relations. It therefore naturally follows that his remarks behind closed doors were probably very similar in spirit to the ones that he shared in public since it wouldn’t make sense for him to give them a tongue-lashing in private only to flip the script in public for the global audience’s sake. Russia’s diplomats are world-class and this is how they expect their counterparts to conduct their honorable profession.

Be that as it may, Russian diplomats were played for fools by Borrell, though they didn’t realize it until he returned back to the bloc and started blogging. There’s no doubt that the visit went smoothly, both in public and in private as was explained, so they had no reason to suspect any foul play until he surprised them with his online remarks. It might comfort Russia and/or help it “save face” to think that someone in Brussels or perhaps even further abroad pulled Borrell’s strings, but the argument being made in this analysis is that he was the one trying to pull theirs. To be absolutely clear, Russia did everything by the book during his visit and there wasn’t anything else that they should have done at the time considering all the positive signals that they received from him in public and in private, but at the end of the day, he seems to have just been faking them out. An analysis of his provocative blog post hints at what he might have been thinking at the time.

Borrell claims that his interactions with Lavrov were sometimes very intense even though he didn’t show it during their press conference. About that, he described it as “aggressively staged” and condemned the expulsion of some EU diplomats who violated their professional code of conduct by joining in unauthorized pro-Navalny rallies, though if that’s truly how he felt, then he did an excellent job disguising it. In hindsight, he should have made his feelings known right then and there in order to clear up any ambiguity created by his positive press conference with Lavrov. For some reason, despite Russia repeatedly — and in the eyes of some of its most passionate supporters abroad, almost embarrassingly — reminding its European counterparts of its deep-seated desire to enter into a rapprochement and reset their relations back to their pre-2014 halcyon days, Borrell wrote how convinced he now is that “Russia is progressively disconnecting itself from Europe”.

Truth be told, many Non-Russian Pro-Russians (NRPR) have publicly pleaded on the internet for years that this is exactly the course of action that Russia should have commenced seven years ago, with many expressing their frustration every time that Moscow obsequiously talks about what it still continues to this day to describe as its so-called “Western partners”. Instead, the learning experience of the past week taught by none other than Borrell himself should imbue Russian strategists with a fresh impetus to accelerate the “recalibration” of their Great Power’s “balancing” act towards China after its recent high-profile diplomatic disagreements with India, double down on its “Ummah Pivot” to Muslim-majority countries, and comprehensively expand relations with Africa. That doesn’t mean that they should abandon the Western vector of their diplomatic outreaches, but just that it mustn’t continue to take precedence over all others like it hitherto has.

As interesting of an observation as it may be, non-Western diplomats still tend to practice diplomacy in the classical way that it’s intended unlike their Western counterparts. The former are more sincere behind closed doors than the latter are, as proven by the embarrassing Borrell episode. The EU is trying to humiliate Russia by manipulating its diplomats’ professional expectations in order to turn them into fools on the world stage, something that Russia’s non-Western partners aren’t interested in doing. The bloc is doing this because of the power trip that it’s been on with American backing over the past seven years, believing (whether accurately or not) that Russia needs them more than the reverse since it’s always Moscow that’s requesting (or as critics claim, begging for) a rapprochement and never Brussels. Moscow was just practicing diplomacy in its classical way, but Brussels misinterpreted it as political desperation that it subsequently sought to exploit at every turn.

There’s truth to the Russian perception that the EU is mostly controlled by the US, but the former’s diplomats mustn’t rely any longer on that train of thought as an excuse for dismissing every blatantly disrespectful action that the latter’s commit. It’s time for Russia to recognize that the EU must take responsibility its actions, including its willingness to continue remaining mostly controlled by the US. Blaming America might score some rhetorical points with at home and among Western dissidents, but clinging to that belief and actually acting upon it by looking the other way whenever the EU diplomatically slaps Russia around risks leading to a loss of respect for this proud Great Power. Thankfully, Moscow’s recent expulsion of EU diplomats hints that it’s regaining its self-respect and belatedly recognizing that the bloc isn’t its friend. It can only be hoped that this is followed up by Russia confirming Borrell’s worst nightmare and finally distancing itself from the West.

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