US Election 2020: Muslim Congresswomen Win Re-election

US Election 2020: Muslim Congresswomen Win Re-election

By Staff, Agencies

Muslim-American Democrats Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar have won reelection to US House in the 13th District of Michigan and in Minnesota’s 5th Congressional District respectively.

According to The Associated Press, Omar 38, defeated her Republican challenger, Lacy Johnson, by 64.6 percent of the vote to 25.9 percent.

Elected as the first Muslim female to Congress in 2018, both politicians comfortably fended off primary challenges in August to secure a second term for their seats.

44 years old Rashida in a recent tweet said “It is an honor to stand against all forms of hate and oppression. Shukran [Thank you]!”

Earlier in an interview Tlaib vowed to push for Palestinian rights. She said Covid-19 relief will be her top priority for her second term in the House.

History: The Zionist Origins of Saudi Arabia and Its Royals

Part I

By Rez Karim

Global Research, September 22, 2020

Recognizing the contentious nature of the subject, this two-part article relies only on official treatises, pacts and primary sourced evidence to compile a historically accurate account of the founding of Saudi Arabia and Al Saud family becoming ‘Royals’.

Growing up Muslim in a Muslim majority country, I spent most Friday afternoons at a mosque, attending the Jummah prayer. First part of a Jummah prayer calls for the Imam to perform a Khutbah – a weekly sermon of sorts. It was in one of those Khutbahs that I, as a very young boy, learnt about the plight of the Palestinians for the first time.

Indeed, it’s a common practice among Imams around the world to bring up the Palestinian issue at mosques, especially during Friday sermons, and pray for the Palestinian people. In those prayers and discussions, Israel’s name comes up inevitably. In fact, Israel’s oppression of Palestinians bears no ambiguity in Islamic thoughts. And condemnation of Israel, therefore, comes naturally to Muslims around the world.

However, what escapes awareness in almost all Muslims is the connection between Israel and Saudi Arabia. While zealously castigating Israel for its atrocities, Muslims often revere Saudi Arabia as the custodians of Islam’s holiest sites; completely ignoring the Kingdom’s role in founding the Zionist state in the first place.

Notwithstanding the existence of a deep-seated bias against Israel among Muslims, it’s important to recognize that the lack of criticism for Saudi Kingdom, alongside Israel, doesn’t come from bias. Indeed, this absence finds its roots not in bias, but in a complete lack of knowledge. Knowledge among current generation of Muslims, as well as among the world population, about how Saudi Arabia and its founding king, Abdel Aziz Ibn Saud, played a critical role in establishing the Zionist state of Israel.

Suffice it to say, this ignorance about one of the most critical periods in world history seems anything but normal. Amazingly, the world, especially the Muslim world, had been kept in darkness about this momentous chapter in Middle East history. Propaganda and omissions run rampant within the historical accounts of this period. Official Saudi sources like House of Saud website, for example, avoids any mention of British involvement in founding the KSA. Although this omission seems predictable to many, it’s worth noting that even mainstream media outlets like the BBC, and prominent historians such as Professor Eugene Rogan etc., routinely portray Ibn Saud as having acted independently during WWI, and not as an instrument for the British Empire.

Therefore, recognizing the contentious nature of the issue – and to avoid becoming yet another ‘perspective’ on the subject – this article relies only on primary sourced evidence and the following four official treatises and declarations to compile a historically accurate account of the events:

  1. The McMahon-Hussain Correspondence
  2. The Treaty of Darin
  3. The Sykes-Picot Agreement
  4. The Balfour Declaration

1. The McMahon-Hussain Correspondence

To properly understand the events that led to the creation of both Israel and Saudi Arabia, we must travel back to the early 1900s’ Middle East. At the outbreak of WWI in the region, Sir Henry McMahon, then British High Commissioner in Egypt, offered Hussain bin Ali, Sharif of Hijaz (or ruler of the Hijaz – the western Arabian region in which Mecca and Medina lie), an independent Arab state if he would help the British fight against the Ottoman Empire. Hussein’s interest in throwing off his Turkish overlords converged with Britain’s war aim of defeating the Ottomans. McMahon made this offer via a series of letters exchanged between him and Sharif Hussain, collectively known as the McMahon-Hussain Correspondence. On his 14 July 1915 letter to McMahon, Hussain stated, among other things, the following as one of his propositions:Palestine: Britain Should Apologise for the Balfour Declaration, Not ‘Celebrate’ It

“Firstly.- England will acknowledge the independence of the Arab countries, bounded on the north by Mersina and Adana up to the 37th degree of latitude, on which degree fall Birijik, Urfa, Mardin, Midiat, Jezirat (Ibn ‘Umar), Amadia, up to the border of Persia; on the east by the borders of Persia up to the Gulf of Basra; on the south by the Indian Ocean, with the exception of the position of Aden to remain as it is; on the west by the Red Sea, the Mediterranean Sea up to Mersina. England to approve the proclamation of an Arab Khalifate of Islam.”

In response, McMahon wrote on 24 October 1915:

“I regret that you should have received from my last letter the impression that I regarded the question of the limits and boundaries with coldness and hesitation; such was not the case, but it appeared to me that the time had not yet come when that question could be discussed in a conclusive manner.

“I have realized, however, from your last letter that you regard this question as one of vital and urgent importance. I have, therefore, lost no time in informing the Government of Great Britain of the contents of your letter, and it is with great pleasure that I communicate to you on their behalf the following statement, which I am confident you will receive with satisfaction:-

“The two districts of Mersina and Alexandretta and portions of Syria lying to the west of the districts of Damascus, Homs, Hama and Aleppo cannot be said to be purely Arab, and should be excluded from the limits demanded.

“With the above modification, and without prejudice of our existing treaties with Arab chiefs, we accept those limits.”

Interestingly, throughout history, there has been much disagreement as to whether this promise included Palestine. However, as we can see above, the area promised to the Arabs in McMahon’s letter excluded only the territory to the west of a line from Damascus north to Aleppo. Palestine, far to the south, was, by implication, included. Nevertheless, the British subsequently denied that they included Palestine in the promise and refused to publish the correspondence until 1939.

At the time however, Sharif Hussain believed this official promise from the British Government. He went on to make the most significant contribution to the Ottoman Empire’s defeat. He switched allegiances and led the so-called ‘Arab Revolt’ in June of 1916, which removed the Turkish presence from Arabia.

The defeat of the Ottoman Empire by the British in WWI left three distinct authorities in the Arabian peninsula. Sharif of Hijaz Hussain bin Ali of Mecca (in the west); Ibn Rashid of Ha’il (in the north); and Emir Abdel Aziz Ibn Saud of Najd and his religiously fanatical followers, the Wahhabis (in the east).

2. The Treaty of Darin

On 26 December 1915, Sir Percy Cox, on behalf of the British Government, signed the Treaty of Darin with Abdel Aziz Ibn Saud. Also known as the Darn Pact, the treaty made the lands of the House of Saud a British protectorate. The British aim of the treaty was to guarantee the sovereignty of Kuwait, Qatar and the Trucial States (later UAE). Abdul-Aziz vowed not to attack these British protectorates. He also pledged to enter WWI in the Middle East against the Ottoman Empire as an ally of Britain.

Britain’s signing of Darin Pact in December went against their promises of mutual protection made to Sharif Hussain in October; because Britain’s treaty with Ibn Saud does not oblige him to not attack the Hijaz.

The treaty also saw Abdel Aziz receiving £5000 per month ‘tribute’ from the British Government. After World War I, he received further support from the British. Support included substantially more monetary rewards and a glut of surplus munitions.

3. The Sykes-Picot Agreement 

On May 19, 1916, representatives of Great Britain and France secretly reached an accord, known as the Sykes-Picot Agreement. The accord aimed at dividing most of Arab lands under the Ottoman rule between the British and the French at the end of WWI. In its designated sphere, it was agreed, each country shall be allowed to establish such direct or indirect administration or control as they desire and as they may think fit.

Two diplomats, a Briton and a Frenchman, divided the map of one of the most volatile regions in the world into states that cut through ethnic and religious communities. The secret agreement largely neglected to allow for the future growth of Arab nationalism; which at that same moment the British government was using to their advantage against the Turks.

A century on, the Middle East continues to bear the consequences of the treaty. Many Arabs across the region continue to blame the subsequent violence in the Middle East, from the occupation of Palestine to the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), on the Sykes-Picot treaty.

Indeed, Britain’s signing of this treaty went directly against what it promised to the Sharif of Hijaz in October of previous year. As we will see in Part II of this article, Britain’s betrayal of their promises of an independent Arab state eventually led them to unleash their attack dog, Ibn Saud, on Sharif Hussain and topple him. This allowed the British to effectuate the Sykes-Picot accord, and subsequently establish the Zionist state of Israel.

Read Part II

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Author Rez Karim is an Electrical Engineer and Chief Editor at VitalColumns.com.

Featured image is from the authorThe original source of this article is Global ResearchCopyright © Rez Karim, Global Research, 2020

بين المثقف والمثوقف – عبد الستار قاسم

   الصفصاف

مفهوم الاعتدال في الوعي العربي - عبد الستار قاسم

يتداول الناس على مختلف أوساطهم كلمة مثقف ويجتهدون في تفسيرها وفي المسؤوليات المترتبة على حملها. عموما، يرى الناس ان الذين يتصفون بهذه الكلمة يمكن أن يكونوا أعمدة في المجتمع ويقفوا مع الحق وضد الباطل والظلم. الناس يفترضون من دون تحليل أو فلسفة للكلمة أن الذي يتصف بالثقافة يحمل مسؤولية وأمانة كبيرتين، وهو لا بد يدافع عن العدالة ضد القهر والكبت والانحراف الأخلاقي. الخ.

لكن من المفروض أن يكون هناك تعريف للمثقف حتى يكون الناس عموما على بينة مما يتحدثون عنه، ومن المفروض أن تلعب وسائل الإعلام دورا أساسيا في البحث عن تعريف أو تعاريف ذات صبغة علمية وتنقلها للناس. بخاصة في هذه الأيام حين يكثر الحديث حول دور المثقفين في مواجهة التطبيع مع الكيان الصهيوني، وشد أزر القابضين على الجمر الرافضين للاعتراف بالكيان الصهيوني والتطبيع معه وإقامة أي علاقات معه سوى علاقة المقاومة ضده وضد من يدعمونه. هذا المقال القصير يقدم تعريفا، وللناس التفاعل معه.

المثقف هو صاحب علم ومعرفة يوظفهما لإحقاق الحق ومواجهة الظلم والقهر والاستعباد ومعالجة هموم الناس والسهر على راحتهم. وهذا هو الناجي الوحيد من بين أصناف المثقفين العديدة. وقد سبق أن كتبت كتابا بعنوان  قبور المثقفين العرب ونشرته دار الفرسان في عمان/ الأردن، وصنفت فيه المسمون بالمثقفين إلى أصناف وفئات عديدة، وكلها وضعتها في خانة مختلفة عن الخانة التي آوت المثقفين الحقيقيين وفق التعريف الذي اقدمه هنا.

صاحب العلم والمعرفة الذي لا يوظف علمه ومعارفه لخدمة الناس ليس مثقفا، إنما هو مثوقف يستعمل ما يحمل من علم ومعرفة من أجل الحصول على مكاسب آنية وشخصية ويكاد لا يلتفت بتاتا إلى مصالح الناس وهمومهم والمظالم التي تقع على رؤوسهم. هو يبحث عن منصب أو مال أو جاه، ولديه الاستعداد لأن ينافق ويكذب ويدجل من أجل مصالحه وفوائده المادية سواء كانت له مباشرة أو لأبنائه وزوجه وبناته. أغلب المثوقفين العرب ينتمون إلى خانة إرضاء المسؤول عساه يعطف عليه بمنصب أو جاه أو مال، أو تجنب العقاب الذي يمكن أن يمارسه المسؤول ضده. المثوقفون يخشون على الوظيفة، ويخشون الاعتقال وعقوبات أجهزة المخابرات والأجهزة الأمنية الأخرى. وهؤلاء يرون دائما أن الرزق والحياة بيد المسؤول وليس بيد الله سبحانه وتعالى، ولا يؤمنون بفكرة الاعتماد على الذات وتدبير الأمور ذاتيا إذا اصابه وأصاب عائلته سوء أو مكروه.

وسائل الإعلام في أغلبها تتحدث الآن عن دور المثقفين العرب في مواجهة التطبيع. أكيد هناك مثقفون يقفون مع الحق الفلسطيني ومع كل القضايا العربية، لكن المثوقفين يعدون أعدادا مضاعفة. أنظروا إلى دول الخليج والتي تحول العديد من رجال الدين فيها عن دينهم وأنكروا الخليفة عمر بن الخطاب ونقضوا عهده وأنكروا قول الله سبحانه بحق القدس والمسجد الأقصى وفرطوا بالديار المقدسة. لقد ثبت أنهم كانوا يعبدون الله لمصلحة، وبدلوا عندما أمرهم الحاكم الظالم الشهواني بذلك . وأسوق مثلا بعض المثوقفين المصريين الذين يجب أن يكونوا الشعلة في الدفاع عن تاريخ مصر وقضايا الأمة العربية، هم يمتدحون اللحاق بالكيان الصهيوني الآن. وحتى لا يدير مثوقف عربي ظهره أقول إننا في الساحة الفلسطينية خبرنا مواقف المثوقفين الفلسطينيين الذين صفقوا للاعتراف بالكيان الصهيوني والتنسيق الأمني معه وتوقيع اتفاق أوسلو المشؤوم، وارتضوا لأنفسهم أن يكونوا أدوات لتطبيق الاتفاق وإرضاء الكيان الصهيوني والأمريكيين. لي زملاء كثر في مختلف الجامعات الفلسطينية قبلوا على أنفسهم القبول بمناصب تخدم سلطة أوسلو، وتخدم الاحتلال في النهاية. لا تغضبوا أيها العرب فإن مثوقفينا لا يختلفون عن مثوقفيكم. كلانا في الشؤم واحد. لكن أيضا كل مثقفينا الكبار العظام على امتداد الوطن العربي الذين يضحون بمصالحهم يقفون شامخين يدا واحدة في مواجهة الانهيار العربي والفجر آت إن شاء الله.

تقليص أجنحة الإمارات يجمع إيران وتركيا

تقليص أجنحة الإمارات يجمع إيران وتركيا - ميدل ايست نيوز بالعربي

عباس بوصفوان

الخميس 17 أيلول 2020

أتقنت الإمارات، على نحو لم يحدث من قبل، تجميع خصوم أشدّاء ضدها، يملكون مشروعاً وطنياً يرتكز على القومية، والإسلام، والتاريخ المديد المتعدد الطبقات، وسردية دستورية تستند إلى بُعدَي الجمهورية (البعد الشعبي والانتخابات، على علاتها) والدين في شكله الشيعي أو السني، وعقيدة سياسية ذات قوام ناعم قابلة للنمذجة والتصدير والجذب، وموقعاً استراتيجياً، وغنى ثقافياً، وعدداً سكانياً ضخماً، وقوة اقتصادية ذاتية، وعتاداً عسكرياً يحسب له ألف حساب، وحلفاء عقائديين، وحضوراً عالمياً… وكذا تحديات جمّة تجعل من الإمارات الصغيرة غير قادرة على إزعاج النّمرين الآسيويين الصاعدين.

أهداف طهران وتركيا

يبدو أن ما يشغل طهران وأنقرة، بعد التطبيع الإماراتي مع الاحتلال الإسرائيلي، ليس الدخول مع الإمارة الصغيرة الطموحة في حرب ساخنة، فذاك ما تكرهه إيران، التي تجيد القيادة من الخلف. وهو أمر تعلّمته تركيا، في ما يبدو، في تدخلها المثير للجدل في ليبيا، لكن «المتوازن» إن صح القول مقارنة بتدخلها الفج والقبيح والدموي في سوريا.
الأرجح أن الدولتين المسلمتين الكبيرتين، ستضعان الخطط الساعية إلى تقليص أجنحة الإمارات، بما يعيد الدولة الخليجية الفتية الغنية إلى ما كانت عليه تقليدياً، من سوق تجارية كبرى، لا خصماً سياسياً متقدماً، ولا موطئ قدم للمخابرات المعادية، ولا منصّة لإطلاق النار، ولا مقراً لتغذية النزاعات الإقليمية، ولا بؤرة للتناحر الإقليمي والدولي، وإن احتفظت لنفسها بموقع المنبر الإعلامي المعادي فذاك من الأمور المتفهمة. ولا شك في أن هذا الموضوع كان في صلب النقاش الإيراني التركي في الاجتماع الذي التأم افتراضياً قبل أيام، ودعا فيه الرئيس روحاني نظيره التركي إردوغان إلى موقف مشترك من التطبيع الإماراتي.

التطبيع إيرانياً وتركياً

تستثمر كل من إيران وتركيا الكثير في القضية الفلسطينية، بعدما أدركت أنقرة أن نفوذ طهران عميق بين فصائل المقاومة، في وقت يظهر فيه الخطاب السعودي – الإماراتي رغبة متزايدة في إسدال الستار على قضية العرب الأولى. بيد أنه يجدر أن نلحظ فارقاً نوعياً بين مقاربة طهران مقارنة بأنقرة في موضوع إسرائيل، ووجودها في المنطقة، وتالياً إرساء علاقات دبلوماسية معها، وخصوصاً في الوقت الراهن، حيث يتنافس محور تركيا – قطر – «الإخوان» من جهة، مع محور السعوديين والإماراتيين والمصريين من جهة أخرى، على كسب ود أميركا، الحاضن الرئيسي للاحتلال. يفرض ذلك على تركيا، التي تملك علاقة دبلوماسية قديمة مع تل أبيب، وقطر التي سبق لها أن استقبلت مكتباً إسرائيلياً في قلب الدوحة، أن لا يظهرا رفضاً مبدئياً لوجود الكيان الإسرائيلي والتطبيع معه.

يحرص المحور التركي على تمييز مساره عن المحور السعودي


يحرص المحور التركي على إبراز معارضته للتطبيع استناداً إلى رفض إسرائيل الإقرار بالحقوق الفلسطينية، كما يحرص على تمييز مساره عن المحور السعودي، المتحالف هو الآخر مع واشنطن. تظهر قناة «الجزيرة»، «توازناً» لافتاً بين مختلف الآراء، فلا تعطي وقتاً أوسع للأصوات المعبرة عن موقف مبدئي للاحتلال، بل تمنح متسعاً عريضاً للمثقفين العرب «المعتدلين»، الداعين إلى تسوية مع إسرائيل تفضي إلى التطبيع، وأولئك الذين يبررون العلاقة معها، حتى من دون تسوية.
السعوديون يسعون، من جهتهم، إلى القول بأنهم أقرب إلى أميركا، بيد أن القطري والتركي نجحا في السنوات الماضية في شد عصب العلاقة مع واشنطن، وحتى واشنطن ترامب، الأقرب إلى السعودي. من ناحيتها، تعتقد إيران وحلفاوها أن المنطقة لن تبلغ مستوى الاستقلال الحقيقي إلا بإخراج القوات الأميركية، التي تتحالف معها تركيا وقطر. أمّا إسرائيل، فهي إيرانياً قاعدة أميركية متقدمة، وجب اجتثاثها، ولمّا كان من الصعب أن تقوم إيران مباشرة بذلك، فإنها تحتضن ما بات يعرف بحركات المقاومة، التي تهدد الكيان وتحشره في الزاوية.

ما الذي أجّج الخلافات؟

ما يجعل الأتراك والإيرانيين يرفعون الصوت عالياً تجاه أبو ظبي، هو مضيّ الأخيرة في رفع عقيرتها إلى درجة إرسال طائرات للمشاركة في مناورات يونانية، موجهة ضد تركيا، والمضيّ – بالمقابل – في إرساء علاقة متينة مع تل أبيب، موجهة ضد طهران. اعتاد الطرفان التركي والإماراتي أن يتصادما في ليبيا وسوريا ومصر، لكن الإمارات تمضي بعيداً حين تنقل الصراع إلى حدود أنقرة، كما على حدود قطر. وطالما اصطدم الإماراتي والإيراني في اليمن ولبنان والعراق والبحرين، لكن إدخال أبو ظبي إسرائيل على خط المواجهة يفرض على طهران تعاملاً مختلفاً.
سمعنا تنديداً من إردوغان وروحاني بالإماراتيين، والتقديرات المرجحة أن أبو ظبي ستضطر، على الأرجح، ولو في هذه الفترة التجريبية، إلى دعوة إسرائيل وأميركا إلى أن لا تحوّلا المدينة التجارية إلى منصة عسكرية موجّهة نحو إيران، بيد أن ذلك لن يطمئن طهران إلا بعد أن تتحول الفرضية إلى واقع، وإلا باتت «المدينة التي من زجاج» هدفاً إيرانياً مشروعاً.
ولا ننسى أن الحصار ضدّ قطر وإيران وتركيا يجمعها ضد الإمارات، التي يعني تحجيمها تحجيم الرياض.

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UAE-Israel normalization agreement pours salt on Palestinians’ wound: Emirati activist

“The Emirati-Saudi alliance, in my view, is based on Mohammed bin Zayed’s plan to push Saudi Arabia towards Yemen’s swamp, and the ultimate goal was to weaken it politically and exhaust its economy.”

By Mohammad Mazhari

August 24, 2020 – 11:48

TEHRAN – Abdullah al-Tawil, an Emirati political activist, is of the opinion that “Emirates-Israel normalization agreement pours salt on Palestinians’ wound and it is a bridge over the rubble of the Palestinian cause.” 

Israel and the UAE reached an agreement on August 13 that will lead to the full normalization of diplomatic relations between the two sides.
The deal came after a phone call between United States President Donald Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi. 

Under the agreement, Israel has promised to suspend the annexation of parts of the occupied West Bank. However, just hours after the announcement Benjamin Netanyahu said he remained committed to the annexation plan.

In this regard, al-Tawil tells the Tehran Times that the agreement will not serve the Palestinians’ interests and won’t stop the annexation of the West Bank.

“This agreement pours salt on Palestinian’s wound, and it is a bridge over the rubble of the Palestinian cause,” says Al-Tawil.

Following is the full text of the interview:

Q: What are the causes or motives that prompted the UAE to normalize ties with Israel?

A: Firstly, I must record my personal position on normalization with Israel.

It was a stab in the back of the Arab nations. Israel denies clearly the rights of the Palestinians on their land and their just cause. 

Regarding the UAE’s reasons for overt normalization of ties with the Israeli regime, it must be pointed out that normalization was not a result of the moment, but rather it was passing quietly under the table.

Secret meetings were held in Abu Dhabi and Tel Aviv, as well as secret talks at a high level. 

Besides the governmental level, there were plans to prepare Emirati people to accept the normalization by the public media and official statements on social media.

The Emirati regime pursues a policy of intimidating the Emirati citizens and restricting them with laws that criminalize the ruler’s criticism accordingly.

The ultimate goal of normalization is to guarantee Mohammed bin Zayed’s chance to reach power in a comfortable way after became notorious for hatching conspiracies and now looking for peace.

Given Turkey’s growing political and military power in the Middle East (West Asia) and the failure of Qatar’s blockade and undermining its mediatory role in the Palestinian cause, the Emirates feels need new allies to protect its interests.

Therefore, it believes in such a normalization agreement, which will form a strong ally for it to protect itself. This is in the level of politics, but economically the Corona crisis greatly affected the UAE’s markets and trades, especially in the real estate field.

Thus, they resorted to Jewish investors and finally tried to satisfy the U.S. administration, whether Trump remains or not because Trump is a lifeline for the Emirati rulers, but if he loses the upcoming election, then they will find a return line to the American Democrats.

Q: How do you assess the reaction of the people in the Arab world, including those on the southern shores of the Persian Gulf, to the UAE’s decision to normalize relations with Israel?

A: Arab people as a whole still love Palestine, and their hearts beat with hatred of the Zionist regime which has killed Palestinians and demolished their houses. 

But we are talking about a policy of “destroying the awareness” practiced on the (Persian) Gulf peoples, especially the Emirati people when the Ministry of Tolerance was established.

The ministry tries to teach citizens the arts of tolerance with Hindu religions and Judaism in particular 

So, temples were opened for Hindus and synagogues for Jews. We cannot say that reactions inside the UAE are non-existent, but we can confirm that there are many people who refuse normalization but fear to openly object or reject it, given that what awaits them is an unfair judiciary, secret prisons, and inevitably a large financial fine due to laws that criminalize freedom of opinion.

By the way, there are Emiratis who have created a “resist normalization” association which its aim is to educate the citizens and refuse to sign treacherous agreements and support the Palestinian cause.

As for the (Persian) Gulf states, there are a very large number of those who expressed their objection to normalization. In many countries, the activists have launched tags with their names to refuse normalizing ties with Israel, a very important matter. Awareness at this phase has a critical role, and we wish it will continue.

Q: Do you think that the Emirates’ decision would serve the Palestinian people and the Palestinian cause?

A: Of course, this agreement pours salt on Palestinians’ wounds, and it is a bridge over the rubble of the Palestinian cause.

This agreement will not stop the annexation of the West Bank as explicitly declared by Netanyahu, nor will it restrain the regime which commits crimes against the Palestinians, nor will it ever restore al-Quds (Jerusalem), nor will it give them an independent state. Rather, it is an explicit recognition of Israel over the Palestinian lands and legitimizing the occupier of Jerusalem and the Al Aqsa Mosque.

In short, it is an Emirati-Israeli agreement, and Palestine in this agreement was just a bridge to cross. 

“Mohammed bin Zayed has succeeded in weakening Saudi Arabia by influencing Mohammed bin Salman, who transferred the Emirati experience to Saudi Arabia in the cultural and security level.”

Q: Who actually rules the UAE? What are the main groups that govern the Emirates?

A: After the death of Sheikh Zayed, announcing his death was delayed for many reasons, including disputes among his sons.

I assure you that the phase that preceded the announcement of Sheikh Zayed’s death was that Mohammed bin Zayed managed to rig the process of electing his successor, in which Sheikh Sultan was more entitled.

And according to Sheikh Zayed’s will, Sheikh Khalifa became ruler of Abu Dhabi, and since then, Mohammed bin Zayed has messed with the country’s policies.

In 2011, when the Arab Spring started, Mohammed bin Zayed exploited it to suppress freedoms and restrict society with strict laws.

 Moreover, Mohammed bin Zayed ordered mass arrests of 94 Emirati citizens affiliated to the intellectual and academic classes, and that was to pave his way to fully control the reins of power in the country, especially after Sheikh Khalifa’s illness and absence of him in the media and political scene.

So, the actual ruler in the United Arab Emirates is Mohammed bin Zayed, who controls the country and exerts his influence on all other emirates, whose rulers are unfortunately coward and fearful of his authority.

Q:  What is the secret of the UAE-Saudi alliance? Would you expect Saudi Arabia and Bahrain to follow the example of the Emirates?

A: The Emirati-Saudi alliance, in my view, is based on Mohammed bin Zayed’s plan to push Saudi Arabia towards Yemen’s swamp, and the ultimate goal was to weaken it politically and exhaust its economy to undermine its influence after it was the most important state of the (Persian) Gulf.

Mohammed bin Zayed seeks greatness and fame. Unfortunately, he has succeeded in weakening Saudi Arabia by influencing Mohammed bin Salman, who transferred the Emirati experience to Saudi Arabia at the cultural and security level. Actually, the controls Mohammed bin Salman’s childish impulses.

As for his involvement in the normalization, Mohammed bin Zayed challenged Saudi Arabia for his superiority over the Arab peace initiative that Saudis had signed it, as if he is saying, “Come with me for the peace agreement, Saudi agreement is out of date.”
If Mohammed bin Salman remains in power, sooner or later, Saudi Arabia will, unfortunately, engage in the normalization process.

Bahrain is a dependent state and will inevitably be the first to sign the normalization agreement after the UAE.

We wish the other (Persian) Gulf states to be steadfast in facing pressures and to take a position that immortalizes in history, and when the grandchildren read it, they say that there are Arab countries who have betrayed and there are others that kept the covenant.  

RELATED NEWS

“Greater Israel” in the Making: Netanyahu Regime’s Illegal Annexation Scheme Nears Implementation

By Stephen Lendman

Global Research, June 24, 2020

Trump’s unlawful Deal of the Century scheme green-lighted Israeli annexation of illegally established settlements on stolen Palestinian land and the Jordan Valley.

Netanyahu earlier vowed to press ahead with annexation. 

Reportedly on or around July 1, he’ll initially announce the annexation of what the Times of Israel called “three West Bank (settlement) blocs,” not the Jordan Valley for now, adding:

“Well-placed sources told The Times of Israel last week that the joint mapping committee tasked with delineating the contours of the annexation move still had weeks if not months of work, and the IDF has not been told precisely what Netanyahu has in mind.”

For starters, Ma’ale Adumim, Ariel and Gush Etzion, three large settlements, will be annexed in the coming days, ruling coalition partner Benny Gantz reportedly going along with what’s clearly a flagrant breach of international law.

According to the broadsheet, there’s “relative consensus, domestically and in Washington,” to making the move.

Or is there? The Times of Israel added the following:

“The US initially said it would recognize annexation immediately, but subsequently appears to have at the very least tempered its enthusiasm for the controversial move before the joint mapping committee can complete its work.”

“The (Trump regime) is highly unlikely to approve an Israeli move to unilaterally annex parts of the West Bank by the July 1 date envisioned by Netanyahu,” according to an unnamed “well-placed source.”

Annexation of historic Palestinian land in whole or in part will formally end the two-state illusion — what long ago was possible, clearly not now.

Trump regime hardliners are on board with the most extremist of Netanyahu regime policies — time and again blaming victims of US/NATO/Israeli high crimes for what’s committed against them.

At most, Trump and Pompeo et al may only press Netanyahu to slow, not abandon, illegal annexation of Palestinian land.

It’s highly unlikely that Biden will soften US policy toward long-suffering Palestinians if he succeeds Trump in January.

Throughout his time as US senator and vice president, he one-sidedly supported Israel, including three preemptive wars on Gaza based on Big Lies.

On June 16 at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), the Adalah Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel and four Palestinian human rights groups discussed the illegality of Israel’s annexation scheme.

They warned that it’ll “normalize Israel’s colonial project and amounts to apartheid via the continued expansion and construction of illegal settlements, displacement and dispossession of Palestinians, and demographic manipulation,” adding:

“The Israeli plan would further entrench racial, ethnic, and religious segregation as a legal norm, and Israel will formally establish itself as the sole sovereign regime over the Palestinian people in historic Palestine.”

On the same day, 47 UN special rapporteurs denounced the annexation scheme as “a vision of 21st century apartheid.”

A presentation by Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies’ international advocacy officer Nada Awad to the UNHRC on behalf of Adalah and the four Palestinian human rights groups said the following:

“Last month, in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Israel swore in a new government seemingly committed to formally annexing parts of the occupied Palestinian territory (OPT) in the West Bank in July, in a blatant violation of international law.”

“This annexation, part of the so-called Trump-Netanyahu ‘Deal of the Century’ and the Netanyahu-Gantz coalition agreement, normalizes Israel’s colonial project and amounts to apartheid via the continued expansion and construction of illegal settlements, displacement and dispossession of Palestinians, and demographic manipulation.”

“The principles of this plan are enshrined in Israel’s Jewish Nation-State Basic Law enacted in July 2018.”

“This law established a constitutional order based on systematic ethnic supremacy, domination, and segregation in the so-called ‘Land of Israel’ and the denial of the realization of national self-determination for the Palestinian people.”

“Article 7 of this law provides that Jewish settlement is a national value to be encouraged and strengthened, giving the state authorities further constitutional legal tools to justify the illegal settlement enterprise in the occupied Palestinian and Syrian territories.”

“This law intends to justify as constitutional segregation in land and housing that targets all Palestinians in historic Palestine, including Palestinians citizens of Israel, who have suffered decades of systematic oppression.”

“Annexation would further entrench racial, ethnic, and religious segregation as a legal norm.”

“In this context, Israel will formally establish itself as the sole sovereign regime over the Palestinian people in historic Palestine.”

“We call on the UN and the international community to call for the dismantling of all settlements, to vehemently oppose any annexation, and to guarantee the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, including the right of return to their homes and property.”

Separately, Adalah called Netanyahu’s annexation scheme a flagrant breach of the UN Charter, the Geneva Conventions, and other international law, including binding Security Council resolutions.

Israeli occupation, settlements, land confiscations, resource theft, and related abusive practices are “profound” high crimes against peace and the fundamental rights of all Palestinians.

If annexation proceeds as planned, the West Bank will resemble Gaza, a second open-air prison for a bludgeoned into submission people.

It’ll resemble Dante’s hell, its gate bearing the inscription: “Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.”

A Final Comment

On Monday, thousands of Palestinians rallied in Jericho against Netanyahu’s annexation scheme.

Dozens of foreign diplomats joined them, including Nickolay Mladenov, UN special coordinator for Middle East peace — a position accomplishing nothing because of the US/Israeli regional imperial project.

As long as Washington supports Israeli aims, views of other nations never made a difference because a price to pay by the world community on its ruling authorities for the worst of their high crimes was never imposed.

The so-called peace process was and remains a colossal hoax, a notion the US, NATO and Israel reject.

Yet the illusion of what never was and isn’t now persists, establishment media, Western officials, and UN secretary general fostering it.

Palestinians were abandoned over a century ago by the infamous Balfour Declaration, the beginning of the end of historic Palestine.

Generations of political, military and cultural repression of its people followed, including dispossession from their land, other property, their fundamental rights, and in countless thousands of cases their lives.

Establishment of a nation for Jews on stolen Palestinian land was and remains a scheme to advance Western interests in the oil-rich region.

It led to over 100 years of endless conflict, occupation, dispossession, and repression, along with social and cultural fragmentation,

Historic Palestine and rights of its people were and continue to be abandoned in deference to Western/Israel regional control.

Palestinians are largely on their own, resistance their only option, staying the course no matter the long odds against them.

The world community never offered more than lip service help — the plight of ordinary people everywhere, exploited to benefit privileged interests.

It’s much the same in the West as in the Middle East and Occupied Palestine.

Ordinary people are largely on their own to press for positive change they’ll never get any other way.

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Award-winning author Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)

His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Featured image is from Another Day in the EmpireThe original source of this article is Global ResearchCopyright © Stephen Lendman, Global Research, 2020

Must Watch – Storyville, Lea Tsemel-an Israeli true hero

 BY GILAD ATZMON

In the past I have been critical of many aspects of contemporary Left, in general and Jewish Left, in particular. But my criticism of Jewish Left ends with Lea Tsemel. This Israeli human rights lawyer is out of this world. For decades Tsemel has been supporting the Palestinians and their rights including their rights to emancipate themselves and their land, Watch this video before it is removed

Iranian FM, Palestinian President Reiterate Stance on ‘Deal of Century’

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and President of the Palestinian National Authority Mahmoud Abbas voiced strong opposition to the so-called “deal of the century”, a US-initiated plan for Palestine.

  • February, 05, 2020 – 09:56

In a telephone conversation with Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday, Zarif reiterated the Islamic Republic’s opposition to the plan, stressing that Iran will keep supporting the Palestinian nation’s rights and formation of a sovereign Palestinian government with East al-Quds as its capital.

The top Iranian diplomat also hailed Abbas’ efforts to create national unity in Palestine, reaffirming that Tehran will continue to support the process of reconciliation among Palestinians.

For his part, the Palestinian president briefed Zarif on the stances adopted by Palestinian groups against the American plot and on the political movements to counter the plan proposed by US President Donald Trump.

Highlighting the efforts to ensure national unity in Palestine, Abbas said he will dispatch a delegation to Gaza to contribute to unity between Palestinian groups.

Last week, Trump unveiled his long-delayed Middle East plan, a proposal Palestinian leaders called a “conspiracy” that “will not pass”.

Following Trump’s announcement, Abbas said “a thousand no’s to the plan.

The American plan has sparked widespread international condemnation.

The deal of century ploy, fronted by Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, had already been rejected by the Palestinians, who say the White House’s policies have been blatantly biased in favor of Israel.

حكام العرب في مأزق وليس لبنان… فلا تبتزّوا دياب!

ناصر قنديل

– تتعرّض حكومة الرئيس حسان دياب، التي لا تتبنّى انحيازاً مسبقاً لأي رأي أو محور إقليمي، للابتزاز تحت عنوان، إياكم وأن تُغضِبوا حكام الخليج، فلبنان في مأزق ويحتاج إلى عطف ورحمة هؤلاء الحكام، عساهم يمنّون عليه ببعض مما لديهم من المال. وينطلق أصحاب التحذير من معطىً معلوم وهو حاجات لبنان المالية ومعطيين خاطئين، الأول أن قرار دفع المال للبنان من العرب ليس عربياً، بل هو قرار تتخذه واشنطن، بمعزل عن كيفية تعامل لبنان مع الحكومات الخليجيّة، والثاني هو أن الحكومات العربية والخليجية خصوصاً مرتاحة لوضعها، وآخر همها ما يفعله وما يقوله لبنان واللبنانيون؛ بينما واقع الحال وما يجري في المنطقة يعبر عن ارتباك خليجي خصوصاً وعربي عموماً، سواء تجاه التجاذب الأميركي الإيراني ومخاوف دفع فواتيره، أو تجاه صفقة القرن وكيفيّة التعامل مع الإحراج الذي تسبّبت به لهم، وهم في السرّ شركاء وفي العلن خصوم.

– لبنان عموماً وحكومة الرئيس دياب خصوصاً، رغم ضغط الوضع المالي الصعب في وضع وصفه السفير الأميركي الأسبق جيفري فيلتمان، إن أفرج العرب والخليجيون خصوصاً عن بعض المال اللازم، ليس لديهم سبب ليكونوا في موقع سياسي مناوئ ولا يبحثون عن خصام. وإن لم يفعلوا، وقد ذكر فيلتمان السعودية بأن ديون لبنان بالعملات الصعبة تبلغ 35 مليار دولار أي أقلّ مما تنفقه السعودية على حرب اليمن في عام واحد، فعندها سيسلك لبنان بدائل لا تُفرح واشنطن وربما دول الخليج، ويفتح أبواب التفاوض مع روسيا والصين، سيتغيّر الوضع إلى غير رجعة، وللذين يقولون إن المال عند العرب والغرب ويختصرون الحديث عن المقارنة بروسيا فيتذاكون بالسؤال، وهل روسيا لديها مال لتعطيه؟ لا بد من إجابتهم أننا في النفط والغاز والخيارات الاستراتيجية نتحدث عن روسيا، أما في المال والشركات الناجحة في مجالات الاتصالات والموانئ والسكك الحديدة والمطارات والكهرباء، وهي تنفذ أهم المشاريع في الغرب نفسه، فالحديث هو عن الصين وليس عن روسيا، ويجب أن يقترن بالتذكير أن أكبر حامل لسندات الخزينة الأميركية هي الصين، بما يزيد عن 3,6 تريليون دولار. ومعلوم أن لا الصين ولا روسيا ستُبديان الاهتمام بلبنان إذا لم يكن لهما فيه نصيب سياسي، ولهما عنده مكانة مميزة. وهذا إن حدث يعرف العرب أن لبنان ليس في مأزق، على ذمة فيلتمان، الذي نصح حكومة بلاده والحكام العرب بتمويل لبنان وعدم الدفع بالأزمة أكثر، كي لا تذهب الأمور إلى خيارات يصعب التراجع عنها.

– في السياسة جاء اجتماع وزراء الخارجية العرب وما بعده الإسلامي، ليقولا إن الخطاب اللبناني كان الأكثر انسجاماً مع نفسه. فلبنان مناهض لصفقة القرن تمسكاً منه بالقضية الفلسطينية وإدراكاً منه أنها قلب قضايا المنطقة وأزماتها، وكل حل لها على حساب حقوق الشعب الفلسطيني سيزيد من التأزم والتوتر. وفوق ذلك لإجماع اللبنانيين على أن الصفقة تنهي حق العودة للاجئين الفلسطينيين وتستبدله بتوطينهم في بلدان اللجوء، وهو ما يرفضه اللبنانيون ويعرفون مدى تأثيره السلبي على توازناتهم وسلمهم الأهلي. بينما أغلب الحكام العرب الواقفين في خندق واشنطن فقلوبهم مع الصفقة، لكنهم يدركون بعقولهم أن ما سبق وقالوه لشعوبهم تبريراً للتهرّب من مسؤولياتهم نحو فلسطين قد صار اليوم قيداً عليهم، فهم أصحاب شعار، نكون وراء الفلسطينيين في ما يختارون وما يقبلون وما يرفضون. وها هم الفلسطينيون يقولون لا مدوية لصفقة ترامب. فوجد العرب أنفسهم في الجامعة وفي المؤتمر الإسلامي ملزمون بقول ما لا ينسجم مع ما فعلوا لتصير الصفقة مشروعاً على الطاولة. وحكام العرب يحتاجون لبنان المناوئ للصفقة والذي يملك مقدرات ودور بقوة مقاومته يحسب له الإسرائيليون ألف حساب، ويشكل إلى جانب الفلسطينيين عقبة كبيرة بوجه مرور الصفقة. ولبنان الذي سيذهب إلى سورية من باب مصلحته الوطنية والاقتصادية منسجم مع نفسه، بينما أغلب الحكام العرب في مأزق فهم يدركون حاجتهم أمس قبل اليوم واليوم قبل الغد لإعادة أفضل العلاقات مع سورية، لكنهم ممنوعون بقوة القرار الأميركي من فعل ذلك، فيستطيعون تحميل المسؤولين اللبنانيين الذاهبون إلى دمشق التحيات والاعتذارات، ويراهنون على القول لاحقاً، نحن شجّعنا اللبنانيين للذهاب إلى دمشق، أو إلى بغداد.

– المواجهة الدائرة في المنطقة بين إيران ومعها محور المقاومة من جهة، وأميركا من جهة مقابلة، ليست معركة قابلة للتحوّل إلى حرب كبرى، وإن حدث ذلك فستكون دول الخليج مسرحها أكثر من لبنان، لكن كما يبدو فنهايتها تسوية تضمن خروج الأميركيين، وحفظ ماء وجههم، وترتيبات جديدة في المنطقة. وهذه الترتيبات تؤكدها الخطوات الأميركية نحو إعلان صفقة القرن وهي تدرك استحالة تحولها مشروعاً عملياً لتكون إبراء ذمة تجاه كيان الاحتلال، لأن واشنطن تدرك أنها كي تذهب إلى التسوية مع إيران ومحور المقاومة يجب أن لا تحمل “إسرائيل” معها ولا تحمل مطالبها، ولذلك فعليها أن تمنح لـ”إسرائيل” ما تستطيع كي تتمكّن من الذهاب للتسوية ولا تتّهم بخيانة “إسرائيل” والتخلّي عنها، لكن في النهاية سيربح دوراً من يملك رصيداً في المحور الذي ستكون له الكلمة العليا في المنطقة، ومن حظ العرب أن يمنحوا لبنان اليوم بعضاً من مال، أملاً بأن يمنحهم لاحقاً بعضاً من نتائج الدور.

GOLAN-JERUSALEM: ROBBERY OF THE CENTURY BY TWO CLOWNS UNDER TRIAL

 

The biggest problem in the world are journalists.

Many of whom work for editorial groups financed by multinationals that aspire to control the planet, others are really incapable and serve to support the same project, some of the best remain confined to talk-show that appear more like gossip broadcasts rather than real insights into journalism of inquiry.

Next to them there are very few characters, Max Blumenthal of GrayZone is certainly one of these, who try to challenge the logic of the mainstream every so often they succeed. Still others have fallen into battle trying to fight what, after a public admission by a former CIA director, I have called Deep International State.

Among these was the Italian Mauro di Mauro, who vanished while he was investigating the death of Enrico Mattei, former president of the italian National Hydrocarbons Authority (ENI), who died in a mysterious plane crash like his friend Dag Hammarskjold, UN general secretary still awaiting justice after 58 years for dossiers secreted by the United Kingdom.

There was Mino Pecorelli, believed by the Carabinieri general Carlo Alberto Dalla Chiesa, also killed by the Mafia, sentenced to death for his knowledge of the P2 covered lodge and above all on the secrets about the imprisonment and killing of the Christian Democrat politician Aldo Moro, kidnapped and killed by the terrorists of the Red Brigades in 1978.

We cannot forget Mauro Rostagno who was assassinated while in Trapani he was investigating the report on the Masonic lodges of the Centro Scontrino, the Mafiosi of Cosa Nostra and the military secret services with ties to Stay Behind, the US paramilitary operation in Italy.

In more recent times it is worth mentioning Lasantha Wickrematunge, the Sri Lankan journalist killed in an ambush while he was investigating some government politicians about some suspected arms supplies from the United Kingdom. And finally Jamal Kashoggi, Islamic columnist of the Washington Post torn to pieces in the consulate of Saudi Arabia in Istanbul.

Just because many journalists have been sold or repaid, representatives of two world powers such as the US and Israel can make people believe they are serious while they are gambling on the table of international provocations.

If we were in a world at least a little serious, at least half of the journalists would have burst out laughing when American President Donald Trump together with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu presented his Deal of the Century.

The project is quickly summarized in a few words: to recognize the Palestinian Territories as a State in order to certify Israel’s annexation of the Golan stolen from Syria together with a slice of Jerusalem destined to become the capital of the Zionist state with good peace of Muslims.

The Palestinians, however, would also be allowed to make a tunnel between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank to maintain continuous and uninterrupted connections, at least until some Mossad secret service agent will be given orders to place a bomb in the middle of the underground passage.

Let’s face it: Monty Python would not have been able to study a better screenplay for a show that would only be comical if the bombings that Israel and the USA, whenever they want, continue to do in the Middle East were not involved.

Only the idiots, like many hired Western journalists, can believe the conditional proposal to recognize Palestine as a state only in the face of the possibility of claiming a dominance over Jerusalem and, above all, to legitimize the robbery of the Golan, with its precious waters of the underground and its strategic position, to the detriment of Syria by President Bashar Al Assad that the Israeli Defense Forces army did everything to destroy together with the USA.

The disgusted response of Muslims is inevitable.

“Jerusalem is not for sale, and our rights are not bartered.” Palestinian President Abu Mazen said so, rejecting the peace plan announced today by US President Donald Trump. Trump’s plan “is aggressive and will provoke a lot of anger.”

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said the Israeli part of the Plan “does not make sense”, Reuters told Israeli media. “Jerusalem – he continued – will always be a land for the Palestinians. The Palestinians will face this Plan and Jerusalem will always remain a Palestinian land”.

Trump’s plan is “doomed to failure”. So Iran rejects the American President’s proposal without appeal for peace in the Middle East between Israelis and Palestinians. “The shameful American plan imposed on the Palestinians is the betrayal of the century and is doomed to failure,” the foreign ministry said in a statement. The Lebanese Shiite allies of Tehran, Hezbollah, along the same lines, according to which the Trump plan is “an attempt to eliminate the rights of the Palestinian people”.

What makes the farce of the White House plan really comical is the situation in which the two allies who propose it find themselves.

Trump under trial in the Senate for an Impeachment on the conditioning of Ukraine, Netanyahu, still in the role of prime minister in extension for the failure of two parliamentary elections in Tel Aviv unable to give a majority to the Knesset, is formally indicted for various episodes of bribery.

Two politicians hovering over the abyss of electoral defeat, Netanyahu in the elections of March 3, 2020 and Trump in those of November 3 of the same year, try to win consensus by proposing the impossible to Palestinians on the skin of Syria.

More than the Deal of the Century, as defined by the tenant of the White House, the attempted robbery of the century appears to give Israel the Golan plateau in defiance of the last UN pronouncement, peremptory in reiterating that that area must go back to Syria where it belongs.

It would be a dangerous robbery. But above all it becomes grotesque and ridiculous because invented by two politicians at risk of defeat in their respective countries where they are under investigation. Two shameless clowns in the service of Deep International State.


By Fabio Giuseppe Carlo Carisio
Source: Gospa News

Trump’s Executive Order on Anti-Semitism: A Category Mistake

December 23, 2019  

Lawrence Davidson is a retired professor of history from West Chester University in West Chester PA. His academic research focused on the history of American foreign relations with the Middle East. He taught courses in Middle East history, the history of science and modern European intellectual history.

 Lawrence Davidson 

Trump’s Executive Order on Anti-Semitism: A Category Mistake—An Analysis (23 December 2019) by Lawrence Davidson

Part I—Trump and the Constitution

It is a pretty sure thing that President Donald Trump is ignorant of what is in the U.S. Constitution and, in any case, does not care much about what the document says. Take the idea of freedom of speech as set down in the First Amendment. Does he understand the importance of this amendment? Actually, it would seem that the only freedom of speech he finds sacrosanct is his own, expressed almost daily in angry, often rambling “tweets.” Those frequent missives hardly make the man a model of critical thinking and, as it turns out, for the price of some special interest’s political support, President Trump is willing to tell us all that we must believe the opposite of what is true. If we don’t, he will take away some federal benefit. Trump is by nature both authoritarian and simple-minded—not an unusual combination. 

Part II—Confusing Categories

It was in this simplistic frame of mind that, on 12 December, President Trump issued an executive order directing the federal government to deny funds to universities and colleges that allow alleged anti-Semitic speech on campus. Well, the reader might respond, such an order is understandable because we know that anti-Semitism is a particularly vicious form of racism. And so it is. The mistake here is to assume that President Trump actually knows how to recognize genuine anti-Semitism, so as not to confuse this expression of bigotry with its opposite: the support of human, civil and political rights—in this case, those of the Palestinians. Now, the reader might ask, how could anyone confuse these two categories: on the one hand, the support of an oppressed people’s rights and, on the other, racist anti-Semitism? It helps if you are ignorant, amoral and opportunistic. 

And so, with the encouragement of the Zionist lobby, a particularly powerful lobby dedicated solely to the interests of the Israeli state, President Trump, who is in fact ignorant, amoral and opportunistic, based this executive order on a logical fallacy—a category mistake. He identified protests against Israeli state behavior with anti-Semitic racism and declared that any university or college that allows the former (say, by permitting criticism of Israel for its violent suppression of Palestinian rights) is to be found guilty of the latter (anti-Semitism), and therefore is not to receive federal funds. 

Part III—A Zionist Project 

Working for the purposeful confusion of anti-Semitism and the support for Palestinian rights is a Zionist project. It should be emphasized that the Zionists who carry this project forward are not, like the president, ignorant or confused. They know what they are doing. And that is why this effort constitutes a tragedy of the highest order not only for the Palestinians, but for the Jewish people as well.

After World War II every sane individual knew that racism, particularly racism expressed through state power, was bad news. The consequences of such empowered bigotry was there to see across the world: Japanese behavior in China, Korea and Southeast Asia generally, along with German behavior throughout occupied Europe, constituted the worst examples. They resulted in the deaths of tens of millions—among them six million Jews. That is why as early as the late 1940s, an expansion of international law and the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights sought to make such behavior criminal, particularly when carried out as the policy of governments.

As it turned out, those resolutions constituted direct obstacles to the Zionist goal of a “Jewish state” in Palestine. The Zionist conquest of Palestine in the military campaigns of   1948 and 1967, was followed by the systematic narrowing or outright denial of the human, civil and political rights for Palestinians. In the case of Palestinians residing in Israel proper, the racist policies and practices were often obscured behind a facade of benign-sounding declarations that, more often than not, had little impact on minority rights. No such facade was adopted within the Occupied Territories. In this way racism became an essential tool for achieving Zionism’s goal of ethnic exclusivity.  

So how do you rationalize this behavior? Even though Ashkenasi (that is, European) Jews have been one of the most persecuted groups in Western history, it was not hard for the Zionists to see their own racist behavior as necessary. Founding a state first and foremost for one group, in a territory already occupied by hundreds of thousands of “others,” easily led to discriminatory policies and practices. It also led to indoctrination of Israeli Jews and their diaspora supporters through the distortion of the history of conquest and colonial occupation. The inevitable resistance of the Palestinians, even when non-violent, became labeled as lawlessness at best and terrorism at worst. In this sense, Israeli society has mimicked not only the apartheid sentiments of South Africa, but also the culture that prevailed in the United States before the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s.

Part IV—Exporting the Fallacy

Yet it was not enough for the Israelis to convince their own Jewish citizens that Zionist racism was righteous self-defense and support of Palestinian rights the equivalent of anti-Semitism. This logical fallacy had to be pushed on Israel’s primary ally, the United States. And, at least in the halls of power, this effort has been remarkably successful, probably because the Zionist lobby has a lot of money to help or hinder ambitious American politicians. 

However, outside of those halls, the effort has been exposed for what it is: a dangerous reversal of categories that threatens to turn the clock back on much of the post-World War II progress in political, civil and human rights. As the growing popularity of the boycott Israel movement (BDS) has shown, American citizens, both Jewish and non-Jewish, have an increasing ability to see the reality of the situation. A survey released in mid June 2017 by an organization known as the Brand Israel Group, “a coalition of volunteer advertising and marketing specialists” who consult for pro-Israel organizations, indicated that “approval of Israel among American college students dropped 27% between the group’s 2010 and 2016 surveys” while “Israel’s approval among all Americans dropped 14 points.” Brand Israel’s conclusion: in the future, the U.S. may “no longer believe that Israel shares their values.” This is the case not because of any big increase in anti-Semitism, but due to ever-growing evidence of Israeli racism.

One reaction to this increasing popular clarity of vision is President Trump’s executive order. If, in this case, colleges and universities do not enforce the Zionist logical fallacy, they lose federal money. 

Part V—Conclusion

Governments do not have a very good reputation for telling their citizens the truth. For instance, just this month it was made known that the U.S. government and military misled the American people about the ability to achieve victory in the Afghan war—a conflict that has been going on for 18 years. The same thing occurred during the Vietnam War. However, it is one thing to withhold information, or downright lie about a situation, and another to urge a population to swallow the category contradictions Trump and the Zionists are peddling. There is something Orwellian about that. It is no mistake that it is the brightest of college students, those who are actually overcoming ignorance and practicing the art of thinking straight, who are most put off by this propagandistic tactic. 

As for those Zionist students who claim that protests against Israeli policy and behavior on their campus make them feel uncomfortable, or even unsafe, they might try to learn something from those feelings. After all, it’s the closest they will ever come to the much more profound feelings of anxiety and danger that Palestinians feel every day, in their own homes, neighborhoods and campuses as well. So which category do all of us want to defend—the category of state-sponsored racism or the category of human, civil and political rights? Just be sure not to confuse one for the other.

The International Zionist Conspiracy

It poisons everything it touches

Education In Palestine: West Bank Struggle For School Dreams — Rebel Voice

Crimes against humanity can take many forms. Ethnic cleansing is one, sexual assaults as a policy is another. Starving people is a third as is the random slaughter of civilians. Israel is guilty of all of these and more. They are also guilty of depriving Palestinian children of their right to an education. Schools are […]

via Education In Palestine: West Bank Struggle For School Dreams — Rebel Voice

Exclusive: Rashida Tlaib’s Granny Supports Her Refusal of ‘Israeli’ Conditions

By Al-Ahed Correspondent

Occupied Palestine – Soon after the ‘Israeli’ occupation imposed restrictions on the visit of Democratic US Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib’s visit to the occupied territories, the family anticipating her was totally disappointed.

Tlaib was supposed to visit her grandmother’s home in the village of “Beit Aour al-Fawqa” in the West Bank.

But following the Zionist conditions imposed on the US congresswoman’s visit, Rashida voiced rejection and said in a tweet on her account:

“Silencing me & treating me like a criminal is not what she wants for me. It would kill a piece of me. I have decided that visiting my grandmother under these oppressive conditions stands against everything I believe in–fighting against racism, oppression & injustice.”

The lady in her nineties, called Muftiyya, told al-Ahed in an exclusive interview that she is sad that the occupation’s authorities barred Rashida from visiting occupied Palestine without conditions.

“I was happy with her visit, which was supposed to happen in the coming days, but the occupation’s conditions barred her,” she told al-Ahed, adding that “I prepared delicious meals to receive her, but the occupation killed our joy.”

Her family further voiced support for Rashida’s refusal to submit to the Zionist conditions, considering it a restriction of her freedom. They were also proud of the decision Rashida has made.

Tlaib’s uncle supports her decision

For his part, Rashida’s uncle Bassam said that their stance is the same as Rashida: “We reject the humiliating conditions that were put on her visit of family and relatives in Palestine,” adding that “Rashida has the right to visit Palestine without any condition.”

Bassam also hailed the congresswoman’s stance from the Zionist occupation, noting that the Zionist entity rejects the voices calling for people’s right to self-determination, explaining that the enemy wants Rashida to meet with ‘Israeli’ officials before visiting the Palestinian territories, which she rejected.

The Zionist occupation had blocked the visit of Rashida Tlaib and her fellow Ilhan Omar after pressures from US President Donald Trump. However, according to Zionist officials, the block came due to their Boycott, Divestment, Sanction ‘Israel’ BDS movement ties.

Earlier, Tlaib and Omar voiced solidarity with the pro-Palestinian BDS Movement due to the Zionist policies towards Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Tlaib later tweeted: One day @IlhanMN and I will see Bethlehem and InshAllah it will be free when we do. #FreePalestine

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Paul Findley: A Man of Courage

Global Research, August 14, 2019

Paul Findley one of the most remarkable Congressmen that the US House of Representatives had produced since the Second World War passed away on the 9th of August 2019. He was 98 years old. He was first elected to Congress in 1960 from a district in Illinois once represented by Abraham Lincoln, his immortal hero.  Findley was elected 11 times from that constituency until his defeat in 1982.

As a Congressman, he played a significant role in the formulation of the War Powers Act which required the US president to notify Congress of foreign military engagements. He was also critical of wasteful pentagon spending. He was one of a handful of early legislators who opposed the Vietnam War.

But Findley’s “notoriety” is associated with something else. He was a consistent critic of the influence of the Israel Lobby over Congress. He could see how the Lobby shaped US policies especially in West Asia. He was very much aware of the tactics the Lobby employed to silence anyone who questioned even mildly the biasness of the US position in the Israel-Palestine/ Arab conflict.

Findley himself was a victim of the Lobby’s vicious targeting. Because of his concern over the conflict he had visited the late Palestinian leader, Yasser Arafat, who was then regarded by the US government as a “terrorist.” That visit became cannon-fodder for the Israel Lobby to mount a massive campaign against Findley which was one of the main reasons for his defeat in the 1982 Congressional election.

Following his defeat, he wrote a couple of books about the power of the Lobby in US public life and how institutions and individuals were confronting the Lobby. They Dare to Speak Out had a bigger impact outside the US than within. His next book, Deliberate Deceptions, revealed the nexus between US and Israel forged through money, corporate links and personal relationships. Findley was now perceived by the US Establishment as a staunch opponent of Israeli power over the US.

His explorations into Israeli and Zionist power in the US invariably compelled him to look into how that power determined public perceptions of Islam and Muslims in general. His tentative perspective on the issue received a boost when he was invited to participate in a workshop in Penang, Malaysia on perceptions of Islam and Muslims in the Western media organised by JUST in October 1995. That workshop, as Findley had observed many times since changed his outlook on not only Islam but also the West’s relationship with a civilization which often invoked negative sentiments especially among the ‘educated.’ He began to realise that the roots of the antagonism towards the religion and its followers were deeply embedded in the West’s history and entangled with the crusades and colonialism  and post-colonial structures of global power and dominance.

On his return he produced a Friendly Note on his Muslim Neighbour which was widely circulated and later authored a book entitled Silent No More that sought to demolish America’s false images of Islam and Muslims. The book sold 60,000 copies.

As Findley’s mission to combat ignorance about, and prejudice against, another civilisation was beginning to make some progress, it suffered a severe setback through two major events at the start of the new century. Both the destruction of the twin towers in New York on the 11th of September 2001 — the infamous 9-11 incident — which was the rationale for the US helmed ‘War on Terror’ and the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq in March 2003 made bridge-building between Christians and Muslims a monumental challenge. Nonetheless, Findley persevered. He continued to lend support to the work of the Council on American—Islamic Relations (CAIR) and other such causes.

His last correspondence with me was in January 2016. He had written an article for the JUST Commentary January 20, 2016 entitled, “Truth Seeking About Islam.”  He lamented that his eye-sight was failing — though his spirit was still high.

Findley was a man of extraordinary courage. The positions he adopted on Israeli power or on Palestinian rights or on justice for Muslims in the US incurred the wrath of many. He was often isolated and marginalised. But he never abandoned his principles.

The tenacity with which he adhered to them was what made him a man of integrity and dignity. He knew the price would be heavy.  But it was a price he was prepared to pay.

It is this — his moral conduct in the face of adversity — that will be his lasting legacy.

*

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Dr. Chandra Muzaffar is the President of the International Movement for a Just World (JUST), Malaysia. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization.

Israel’s Hands Spread Wide and Dig Deep

Image result for Israel’s Hands Spread Wide and Dig Deep
Brian Cloughley
August 6, 2019
© Photo: Flickr / Official Photo by Caleb Smith

In the US House of Representatives on 23 July there was an overwhelming vote condemning the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Movement which has the objective of encouraging the government of Israel to meet “its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination and fully comply with the precepts of international law by:

1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall;

2. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and

3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.”

There is nothing morally or legally questionable in any of these aims.  But the United States Congress does not concern itself with morality or legality if these are inconsistent with its policy concerning Israel, which, as enunciated by Representative Lee Zeldin of New York, is based on the conviction that “Israel is our best ally in the Mid East; a beacon of hope, freedom & liberty, surrounded by existential threats.”  Fox News reported that the condemnatory resolution “has been pushed by AIPAC, the influential Israel lobby in Washington,” which explains a great deal, as AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee is a very powerful organisation, with deep pockets and wide-spreading hands.

In February 2019 The Intercept noted  that “AIPAC, on its own website, recruits members to join its ‘Congressional Club,’ and commit to give at least $5,000 per election cycle.” In a film called The Lobby “Eric Gallagher, a top official at AIPAC from 2010 to 2015, tells an Al Jazeera reporter that AIPAC gets results.”  A secret recording revealed that “Getting $38 billion in security aid to Israel matters, which is what AIPAC just did. Everything AIPAC does is focused on influencing Congress.”

And AIPAC influences Congress and other agencies extremely efficiently, even to the extent of managing to have Al Jazeera refrain from broadcasting the US-focused version of The Lobby.The Director of Al Jazeera’s Investigative Unit, Clayton Swisher, said that pressure included “pro-Israel lobbyists in Washington threatening to convince Congress to register the network as ‘foreign agents,’ and false accusations of anti-Semitism against the producers of the documentary.”  That’s all you need:  the mere mention of anti-Semitism makes everyone suck their teeth, roll their eyes, and leap out of the way.

It so happened that the day before Congress condemned an initiative aimed at having Israel recognise the rights of Palestinians and abide by international law, the Israelis carried out an operation of destruction that was specifically aimed against the rights of Palestinians and was contrary to international law.  As the BBC reported, it involved 200 Israeli soldiers and 700 police, weapons at the ready, deploying to the Palestinian village of Wadi Hummus at 4 in the morning of July 22, along with bulldozers and excavators that proceeded to destroy Palestinian homes.

There wasn’t a word of objection from the US Administration whose Tweeter-in-Chief had made his views on Israel crystal-clear on 16 July when he announced that the four non-white female Members of Congress whom he loathes to the point of psychosis are “a bunch of Communists [who] hate Israel.”  Moreover, they “talk about Israel like they’re a bunch of   thugs, not victims of the entire region.”  On the other hand, the European Union stated that “Israel’s settlement policy, including actions taken in that context, such as forced transfers, evictions, demolitions and confiscations of homes, is illegal under international law. In line with the EU’s long-standing position, we expect the Israeli authorities to immediately halt the ongoing demolitions.”  Fat chance of that — just as there is no possibility that the United states or the United Kingdom will support pursuit of international law when it is violated by Israel.

Britain is on its way out of the European Union, so has no say in EU policy, but in any case it wouldn’t agree about criticism of Israel because the governing Conservative Party fosters an organisation called ‘Conservative Friends of Israel’ (CFI) whose members constitute some eighty per cent of Conservative Members of Parliament.

Boris Johnson, Britain’s Trump-loving new prime minister, is a fervid supporter of CFI which supported him in his bid to be head of the Conservative party. On 23 July, after his selection to be leader and thus prime minister, the CFI’s Chairmen, Stephen Crabb MP and Lord Pickles, and Honorary President Lord Polak declared that “From his refusal to boycott Israeli goods in his time as Mayor of London through to his instrumental role as Foreign Secretary…  Boris has a long history of standing shoulder to shoulder with Israel and the Jewish community. Mr Johnson continued to display his resolute support… reiterating his deep support for Israel and pledging to be a champion for Jews in Britain and around the world.”

One of Johnson’s first ministerial appointments was of Ms Priti Patel to be Home Secretary. She had resigned from the Cabinet of PM Theresa May in November 2017 because it had been discovered that she had been telling lies, which wasn’t in itself unusual, but the circumstances were intriguing.  As the BBC headlined about the then head of International Development :  “Priti Patel quits cabinet over Israel meetings row” which involved her apologising to the prime minister “after unauthorised meetings in August with Israeli politicians — including prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu — came to light. But it later emerged she had two further meetings without government officials present in September.”  Not only that, but in a media interview “she gave the false impression that the foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, and the Foreign Office knew about her meetings in Israel.”

It’s one of these irregular verbs which were met with much laughter during the marvellous BBC series ‘Yes Minister’ and ‘Yes, Prime Minister’ — ‘I make a misstatement;  she gives a false impression;  he is in prison for telling lies.’

And it was decidedly strange that the egregious Lord Polak, he of the statement that Boris Johnson stands “shoulder to shoulder with Israel” accompanied Patel at 13 of her 14 meetings with Israeli officials during August and September. What on earth could have been going on?

Of course she had no reason to worry about having to resign for telling lies, because at the time of her disgrace Boris Johnson told the BBC that “Priti Patel has been a very good colleague and friend for a long time and a first class secretary of state for international development. It’s been a real pleasure working with her and I’m sure she has a great future ahead of her.”  The man has the gift of prophecy.

Then Johnson appointed Michael Gove to his Cabinet as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, which is a weird appointment that gives a lot of power and very little responsibility. Gove had been demonstrably disloyal to Johnson during the first leadership struggle, in what the Daily Telegraph called a “spectacular act of treachery” but all was forgiven because, as recorded approvingly by the Conservative Friends of Israel he believes that anti-Zionism and antisemitism are “two sides of the same coin”, which means that anybody who criticises Israel’s nationalistic persecution of Palestinians is an anti-Semite. He believes that “the test for any civilised society is whether it stands with the Jewish people, and whether it stands with Israel. It is a pleasure to stand with the Jewish people. It is a duty to stand with Israel.”

The Palestinians are not going to get one tiny bit of support from either the United States or Britain when their houses are bulldozed to rubble.  They can expect no criticism from Washington or London when their children are killed in Gaza by Israeli soldiers.

The West Bank of the Jordan River, between Israel and Jordan, was captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war. Then it annexed East Jerusalem. Both areas are defined in international law as occupied territory.  Although this is ignored by the US and Britain it was intriguing that in a minor but telling legal finding in Canada on 30 July, a judge ruled that wines made in Jewish settlements in the West Bank should not carry labels that say “Product of Israel” because of course the settlements are built on Palestinian land.

But there’s no point in telling that to the Israeli-supporting wine connoisseur Donald Trump or the US Congress or any member of Britain’s governing Conservative party, because international law means nothing when there are other priorities.

Bassam Shakaa: The Making of a Palestinian ‘Organic Intellectual’

Bassam Al Shakaa

Between his birth in Nablus in 1930 and his death, Bassam Shakaa fought a relentless struggle for Palestinian rights. He challenged Israel, the PA, US imperialism and reactionary Arab governments. Throughout this arduous journey, he survived exile, prison and an assassination attempt.

July 29th, 2019

t would be unfair to claim that Palestine has not produced great leaders. It has, and Bassam Shakaa, the former Mayor of Nablus, who passed away on July 22 at the age of 89, was living proof of this.

The supposed deficit in good Palestinian leadership can be attributed to the fact that many great leaders have been either assassinated, languish in prison or are politically marginalized by Palestinian factions.

What was unique about Shakaa is that he was a true nationalist leader who struggled on behalf of all Palestinians without harboring any ideological, factionalist or religious prejudice. Shakaa was an inclusive Palestinian leader, with profound affinity to pan-Arabism and constant awareness of the global class struggle.





In a way, Shakaa exemplified the ‘organic intellectual’ as described by Italian thinker Antonio Gramsci. Indeed, Shakaa was not a mere “mover of feelings and passions” but an “active participant in practical life, as constructor and organizer – a permanent persuader, not just a simple orator”.

Shakaa’s base of support was, and remained, the people – ordinary Palestinians from Nablus and throughout Palestine who always stood by his side, most memorably when the Israeli government attempted to exile him in 1975; when the Palestinian Authority (PA) placed him under house arrest in 1999 and when he was finally laid to rest in his beloved home town of Nablus, a few days ago.

Between his birth in Nablus in 1930 and his death, Shakaa fought a relentless struggle for Palestinian rights. He challenged Israel, the PA, US imperialism and reactionary Arab governments. Throughout this arduous journey, he survived exile, prison and an assassination attempt.

But there is more to Shakaa than his intellect, eloquence, and morally-guided positions. The man represented the rise of a true democratic Palestinian leadership, one that sprang from, spoke and fought for the people.

It was in the mid-1970s that Shakaa rose to prominence as a Palestinian nationalist leader, an event that changed the face of Palestinian politics to this day.

Following its occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza in June 1967, the Israeli government moved quickly to fashion a new status quo, where the Occupation became permanent and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) was denied any political base in the newly occupied territories.

Among other things, the Israeli government aimed at creating an ‘alternative’ Palestinian leadership that would engage with Israel with trivial, non-political matters, therefore marginalizing the PLO and its inclusive political program.

In April 1976, the Israeli government, then led by Yitzhak Rabin, conducted local elections in the West Bank and Gaza.

Israel had, by then, assembled another group of Palestinian ‘leaders’, which consisted mostly of traditional heads of clans – a small, self-seeking oligarchy that historically accommodated whatever foreign power happened to be ruling over Palestinians.

Israel was almost certain that its hand-picked allies were ready to sweep the local elections. But the Occupation had its unintended consequences, which surprised the Israelis themselves. For the first time since Israel’s creation, all of historic Palestine was now under Israeli control. This also meant that the Palestinian people were, once again, part of the same demographic unit, which allowed for coordinated political mobilization and popular resistance.

These efforts were largely facilitated by the Palestinian National Front (PNF) which was founded in 1973 and comprised all Palestinian groups throughout Occupied Palestine. What irked Israel most is that the PNF had developed a political line that was largely parallel to that of the PLO.

To Israel’s dismay, the PNF decided to take part in the local elections, hoping that its victory could defeat the Israeli stratagem entirely. To thwart the PNF’s initiative, the Israeli army carried out a massive campaign of arrests and deportation of the group’s members, which included intellectuals, academics and local leaders.

But all had failed as Palestine’s new leaders won decisive victories, claiming most mayoral offices and bravely articulating an anti-occupation, pro-PLO agenda.

“We are for the PLO, and we say this in our electoral speeches,” the elected Mayor of Ramallah, Karim Khalaf, said at the time. “The people who come along to our meetings do not ask about road improvements and new factories; we want an end to the Occupation.”

Bassam Shakaa was at the forefront of that nascent movement, whose ideals and slogans spread out to all Palestinian communities, including those inside Israel.

Bassam Al Shakaa

Bassam Al Shakaa following an assassination attempt

Despite decades of exile, fragmentation and Occupation, the Palestinian national identity was now at its zenith, an outcome the Israeli government could never have anticipated.

In October 1978, Shakaa, Khalaf and the other empowered mayors were joined by city councilors and leaders of various nationalist institutions to form the National Leadership Committee, the main objective of which was to challenge the disastrous Camp David agreement and the resulting marginalization of the Palestinian people and their leadership.

On July 2, 1980, a bomb planted by a Jewish terrorist group, blew up Shakaa’s car, costing him both of his legs. Another targeted Khalaf, who had one of his legs amputated. The leaders emerged even stronger following the assassination attempts.

“They ripped off both my legs, but this only means that I am closer to my land,” said Shakaa from his hospital bed.

“I have my heart, my intellect and a just aim to fight for, I don’t need my legs.”

In November 1981, the Israeli government dismissed the nationalist mayors, including Shakaa. But that was not the end of his struggle which, following the formation of the PA in Ramallah in 1994, acquired a new impetus.

Shakaa challenged the PA’s corruption and subservience to Israel. His frustration with the PA led him to help draft and to sign, in 1999, a “Cry from the Homeland”, which denounced the PA for its “systematic methodology of corruption, humiliation and abuse against the people.” As a result, the PA placed Shakaa, then 70, under house arrest. 

However, it was that very movement created by Shakaa, Khalaf and their peers that sowed the seeds for the popular Palestinian uprising in 1987. In fact, the ‘First Intifada’ remains the most powerful popular movement in modern Palestinian history.

May Shakaa rest in peace and power, now that he has fulfilled his historic mission as one of Palestine’s most beloved leaders and true organic intellectuals of all times.

Feature photo | Bassam Al Shakaa poses in front of an Israeli police vehicle just one week after being released from an Israeli jail.

Ramzy Baroud is a journalist, author and editor of Palestine Chronicle. His last book is ‘The Last Earth: A Palestinian Story’ (Pluto Press, London). Baroud has a Ph.D. in Palestine Studies from the University of Exeter and was a Non-Resident Scholar at Orfalea Center for Global and International Studies, University of California Santa Barbara. His website iswww.ramzybaroud.net

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect MintPress News editorial policy.

«انتفاضة» المخيمات «غير مفهومة» لوزير العمل!

الأخبار

الأربعاء 17 تموز 2019

خاض اللاجئون الفلسطينيّون أمس، جولة جديدة من الضغط على الحكومة اللبنانيّة ووزارة العمل للتراجع عن تطبيق خطّتها بشأن «مكافحة العمالة الأجنبيّة غير الشرعيّة». فيما «استغرب» وزير العمل كميل أبو سليمان ردة الفعل الفلسطينيّة «غير المفهومة» والتي «لا معنى لها».

«انتفاضة» المخيمات «غير مفهومة» لوزير العمل!

احتجاحات في مخيم برج البراجنة (هيثم الموسوي)

التحرّكات الشعبيّة، استمرّت متقدّمة بخطوة على اللقاءات السياسيّة التي تقوم بها قيادات الفصائل الفلسطينية في لبنان. إذ شهد أمس، تجمّعات عدة على مداخل المخيّمات الفلسطينيّة بالكوفية والعلم الفلسطيني وإحراق الإطارات المطاطيّة، فيما مُنعت تظاهرة دعا إليها «ائتلاف حق العمل للاجئين الفلسطينيين والمؤسسات والجمعيات العاملة بالوسط الفلسطيني في لبنان» من التوجّه إلى ساحة النجمة حيث كان المجلس النيابي يناقش مشروع الموازنة. اكتفى المتظاهرون بالتجمّع تحت جسر الكولا، بالرغم من إفادة ناشطين عن تضييق أمني منع كثيرين من الوصول إلى نقطة التجمّع.

على صعيد الحراك السياسي للفصائل الفلسطينيّة، وللجنة الحوار اللبناني – الفلسطيني، توصّلت النقاشات إلى موافقة مبدئيّة من وزير العمل كميل أبو سليمان على ما اقترحه الجانب الفلسطيني بشأن «فصل حصول العمال على إجازة عمل عن شرط إرفاقها بعقد عمل مع ربّ العمل يوقّع لدى كاتب بالعدل»، وتجديد تأكيده الموافقة على ما اقترح أول من أمس حيال «خفض المبلغ المتوجّب على صاحب المؤسسة الفلسطيني دفعه كمساهمة في رأس مال المؤسسة إلى ربع القيمة (من مئة مليون ليرة إلى 25 مليوناً)». هاتان الموافقتان المبدئيّتان لم تقترنا بقرار أو نص مكتوب من جانب الوزارة، لكنّهما ترافقتا مع رفض لاقتراح الجانب الفلسطيني «تمديد مهلة السماح إلى ستة أشهر يتمكّن خلالها العامل وربّ العمل الفلسطينيّان من ترتيب أوضاعهما، وإلى حين إصدار القرارات المطلوبة، كما المراسيم التنظيميّة الخاصّة بالقانونين 129 (تعديل قانون العمل) و128 (تعديل قانون الضمان الاجتماعي) التي أُقرّت عام 2010».

أبو سليمان اعتبر في سلسلة «تغريدات» أن «ردة الفعل الفلسطينيّة غير مفهومة ولا معنى لها، وأن الخطة لا تستهدف الفلسطينيين ولا علاقة لها بصفقة القرن ولا بنظرية المؤامرات»، معلناً أنه «من أصل 550 مخالفة لقانون العمل ضُبطت منذ الأربعاء الماضي، ثمة فقط مخالفتان تعودان لمؤسستين كبيرتين يملكهما فلسطينيّون». كما أعرب عن استعداده لإبداء «مرونة لمساعدة الإخوان الفلسطينيين على الحصول على إجازات عمل، يحصلون عليها مجاناً لأنهم معفيون من رسومها، وبشأن بعض المستندات المطلوبة للحصول عليها، فنحن مستعدّون لتسهيل الأمر ضمن القانون».

أبو سليمان: الخطة لا علاقة لها بصفقة القرن ولا بنظرية المؤامرات

السفير الفلسطيني في لبنان أشرف دبور، وجّه من جانبه رسالة إلى «أبناء الشعب الفلسطيني في لبنان»، متمنيّاً فيها «إفساح المجال أمام الحوار الهادئ والبنّاء، الذي تجريه القيادة السياسية الفلسطينية مع الجهات الرسمية اللبنانية لمعالجة التأثيرات السلبية على حقهم في العيش الكريم نتيجة قانون العمل للخروج بنتائج عملية وإيجابية سيتلمّسها أهلنا قريباً جداً».

وفي هذا السياق، أكدت النائبة بهيّة الحريري أن «الأجواء إيجابية والرئيس الحريري لديه كامل الثقة بالوزير كميل ابو سليمان»، بغياب أي موقف للرئيس سعد الحريري. وحضر ممثل عن «حركة أمل» في اللقاء الذي عقد أول من أمس في السفارة الفلسطينية في بيروت، فيما زار عضو مجلس قيادة الحزب التقدمي الاشتراكي بهاء أبو كروم مقرّ السفارة الفلسطينية والتقى دبور، معرباً عن «موقف الحزب الثابت تجاه حق اللاجئين في العمل، واتصالات تجريها قيادة الحزب ووزراؤه للمساعدة في احتواء التداعيات الأخيرة وإعطاء فرصة للحوار والمعالجات الهادئة».

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Ayatollah Qassim: Trump Trying to Sell All that Palestinians Have, Including Holy Sites

By Staff, Agencies 

Bahrain’s most senior cleric Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim denounced on Monday a so-called “peace plan” devised by the United States under President Donald Trump as it “seeks to irreversibly compromise Palestinians’ entire entitlements.”

Qassim made the remarks during an address at a conference in the north-central holy city of Qom in Iran on Monday.

He further warned that the US scheme amounted to selling everything the Palestinians have, including Islam’s holy sites.

“Rejecting the deal means rejecting slavery and accepting freedom,” he added, noting that there was no choice for the Islamic world but to resist America’s plans for Palestinians.

His Eminence said Washington’s deal was a trial for Arab rulers to show their true colors.

In parallel, Ayatollah Qassim declared that the Bahraini people were against both the deal and the Manama conference.

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Journalists from Beirut: ‘No for Deal of Century’

Deal of century conference

Source

June 21, 2019

“No for Deal of Century”, a slogan repeatedly voiced in a hall of a Beirut hotel, which hosted on Friday a conference in support of the Palestinian cause and in protest against US President Donald Trump’s so-called ‘deal of the century’.

The conference which was attended by dozens of journalists, political figures and activists from Lebanon, Palestine, Syria and other Arab countries, took place just few days before the US-led summit in the Bahraini capital, Manama.

The Manama summit, on June 25-26, is considered the economic phase of the ‘deal of the century’.

Friday’s conference in Beirut was entitled “Journalists in Face of Deal of Century”. It called on journalists from all over the Arab world to work together in a bid to counter the US scheme aimed at wiping out the Palestinian cause.

“This deal represents the maximum extent of humiliation in a bid to deny the Palestinian people’s right in their land,” the final statement at the conference read.

“All the attendees today refuse this disgraced deal and seek to topple it will all possible means. It’s time to take the right stance: No for reconciliation, no for negotiations and no for recognition (of Israel).”

The attendees also lashed out at states which accept this deal, considering them as traitors.

“Negotiating on the Palestinian and Arab right is none other than wrong,” the final statement, read by TV host Ghassan Al-Shami, added, calling for exerting efforts and raising cooperation between Arab journalists and activists in a bid to confront the US scheme on level of media and politics.

“What was taken by force can’t be regained but by force. Palestine is for Palestinians,” the statement concluded.

Other Interjections

Before the final statement, a number of politicians, journalists and activists made interpositions, talking about confronting the ‘deal of the century’.

Talal Salman, editor-in-chief of As-Safir former Lebanese daily, stressed that the Palestinian cause is the central cause of the Arab nation, slamming some Arab states for “contributing to the suffering of Palestinian people.”

He warned that the conspiracy against the Arab nation and Syria is going ahead.

Before touching upon the Palestinian cause, Journalist Charles Ayoub hailed Iran’s downing of a US drone, noting that Trump’s retreat from his threat to strike the Islamic Republic is a victory for Tehran and the Axis of Resistance.

Ayoub also warned that Palestine is before high risk of being wiped off the map.

For his part, Head of the Editors in Lebanon Joseph Kosseifi, said: “Deal of the century is the slap of the century,” lashing out at the Arab states’ weak stance towards the Palestinian cause.

As he urged Arabs to take firm stance towards Palestine, Koseifi warned against the deal of the century and its serious repercussions.

Syrian journalist Hanaa Al-Saleh called for economic and media strategy to counter the ‘deal of century’, stressing that Palestine is the central cause of the Arab and Muslim nation.

Under-Secretary-General of the Islamic Radio and Television Union (IRTVU), Sheikh Nasser Akhdar, called for cooperation between Arab media outlets in a bid to confront the ‘deal of century’.

He stressed that despite the conspiracy against Palestine, the Axis of Resistance will emerge as superior, pointing to Iran’s downing of US drone and the technological development of its capabilities.

“The West will no longer gain the upper hand in the field of technology,” Akhdar said.

Meanwhile, the head of the Bahrain forum for human rights, Youssef Rabee stressed the Bahraini people’s refusal of the ‘deal of century’ and all forms of normalization between Arabs and the Zionist entity.

“On June 25-26, Bahrainis will raise the Palestinian flags in Manama.”

Source: Al-Manar English Website

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