Embarrassed Biden: I Brought Khashoggi Murder With MBS

June 16, 2022 

By Staff, Agencies 

US President Joe Biden claimed that he confronted Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Mohammed bin Salman [MBS] over the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, insisting the royal was personally responsible for the killing.

Speaking to reporters following a sit-down with bin Salman on Friday, Biden said he raised the issue “at the top of the meeting” and made his stance “crystal clear.”

“I said very straightforwardly: For an American president to be silent on an issue of human rights, is this consistent with – inconsistent with who we are and who I am? I’ll always stand up for our values,” he said. 

While, according to Biden, the prince denied any direct part in Khashoggi’s murder – which took place in a Saudi diplomatic building in Turkey in October 2018 – the US president went on to say he “indicated that [bin Salman] probably was” involved after all.

Asked about recent comments from Khashoggi’s widow, who said “the blood of MBS’s next victim is on [Biden’s] hands,” he simply replied: “I’m sorry she feels that way,” going on to say he does not regret dubbing the prince a “pariah” during the 2020 presidential race.

“Do I regret it? I don’t regret anything that I said. What happened to Khashoggi was outrageous,” he added.

The president has come under fire for continuing the close US-Saudi relationship despite repeated claims of rights abuses within the Gulf monarchy, chief among them Khashoggi’s assassination, which the CIA concluded was ordered by Mohammed bin Salman himself. 

Upon his arrival at Al Salman Palace, in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on Friday, Biden was photographed giving a friendly fist-bump to the prince, a gesture harshly condemned by Khashoggi’s former fiancée. 

“Hey POTUS, is this the accountability you promised for my murder?” she wrote, apparently speaking from the perspective of her late spouse, while also sharing a photo of the fist-bump.

However, Biden insisted the purpose of his trip to Saudi Arabia was not to see with the prince, but rather “to meet with the [Gulf Cooperation Council] and nine nations to deal with the security… and the needs of the free world.”

He made a similar argument in a recent Washington Post op-ed ahead of his travels, where he outlined a variety of reasons to visit the kingdom, including regional security, rising gas prices, Russia’s “aggression” in Ukraine and competition with China.

فلسطين لا إيران الخاسر الأكبر من زيارة بايدن

السبت 16 تموز 2022

ناصر قنديل

يحاول الإعلام الأميركي والإسرائيلي والخليجي الترويج لمقولة اعتبار إيران الخاسر الأكبر من زيارة الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن الى المنطقة، من خلال تصوير الالتزامات الأميركية مع كيان الاحتلال بالدعم المالي والعسكري والسياسي من جهة، وإجراءات التطبيع التي ستقوم بها دول الخليج مع كيان الاحتلال من جهة مقابلة، بصفتها خسائر لإيران وخسائر تسببت بها إيران بسبب دعمها لحركات المقاومة في المنطقة من فلسطين الى اليمن، التي تسببت بهذا الدعم الأميركي للكيان وهذا الاقتراب الخليجي نحو التطبيع.

التدقيق في مفاصل ومجريات الزيارة وخطاباتها السياسية سيكشف لنا أن الرئيس الأميركي جاء يلعب بالإسرائيليين والخليجيين لحساب كسب الأصوات في معركته الانتخابية من جهة، عبر ما تقدمه الصورة المنقولة الى الداخل الأميركي عن “الحنان” الأميركي تجاه “إسرائيل” للتأثير باتجاه ونسبة تصويت اليهود وفعالية اللوبيات الصهيونية لصالح حزبه انتخابياً، ولتظهير السخاء النفطي الذي يأمل بالحصول عليه من دول الخليج عموماً والسعودية خصوصاً، رهاناً على فعالية تأثيره في أسعار أسواق المحروقات على الأميركيين، وتأثير ذلك على وجهة تصويتهم.

بالتراتب، بعد الربح الأميركي، أو بالأحرى ربح بايدن وحزبه، يأتي الربح الإسرائيلي، بإعلان تطابق الرؤية الأميركية المقدّمة نظرياً تحت شعار حل الدولتين للصراع حول مستقبل القضية الفلسطينية، ليقدم تماهياً مع الرؤية الإسرائيلية، حيث لا مكان للقدس، ولا لوقف الاستيطان، والبحث بإطلاق المسار التفاوضي، وهي العناوين التي كانت تشكل مفاصل التمايز الأميركي عن الرؤية الإسرائيلية، وبدلاً من تخفيض مستوى الدعم الأميركي لـ”إسرائيل” بسبب عدم تجاوبها مع هذه العناوين كما كان يجري عادة في زمن الإدارات الديمقراطية الأميركية خصوصاً، جاء بايدن يعلن التراجع الأميركي عن هذه العناوين لحساب التطابق مع الرؤية الإسرائيلية، ويزيد عليها جوائز مالية وعسكرية يكافئ بها “إسرائيل” على إغلاق الباب نهائيا أمام فرص حل الدولتين، عبر التهويد المتزايد للقدس, تكريسها عاصمة موحدة لكيان الاحتلال، وتنامي تقطيع أوصال الجغرافيا المتصلة للضفة الغربية بالمزيد من المراكز الاستيطانية، واختزال التفاوض بالتنسيق الأمني الذي يجعل السلطة الفلسطينية مجرد جهاز أمني رديف لأمن الكيان إلى جانب أجهزتها لملاحقة المقاومة، لا شريكاً سياسياً.

على الضفة الخليجية، بمعزل عن حجم الخطوات التطبيعية التي سوف يحصدها بايدن لحساب كيان الاحتلال، ومهما كانت محدودة، تعبيراً عن القلق السعودي من التوازنات الدولية المتغيّرة، وتجنبها الإقدام على خطوات متهوّرة في لحظة تغير الموازين، سيبقى قرار من نوع فتح الأجواء السعودية أمام الطائرات الإسرائيلية الذي استبق وصول بايدن الى السعودية، كافياً لإطلاق الإشارة بأن المبادرة العربية للسلام التي كانت تشكل قيداً ذاتياً عربياً اقترحته السعودية في القمة العربية المنعقدة في بيروت عام 2002، للامتناع عن أية إجراءات تطبيعية إلا ربطاً بحصول الفلسطينيين على حقوقهم السياسية، كما وردت في المبادرة، وبالقياس لما وفرته عمليات التطبيع مع الإمارات والبحرين والمغرب من كسر لهذا الامتناع، سيكون القرار السعودي، الذي سيقال إنه شكلي وهامشي، كافياً لمنح الختم السعودي لمبدأ إزالة الحظر عن التطبيع وربطه بالقبول الإسرائيلي بالمبادرة العربية للسلام، وهذا كاف على الأقل بالنسبة للآن، لكل من واشنطن وتل أبيب، طالما أن الموقف السعودي يقول إن مسألة التطبيع لم تعد مسألة عربية جامعة مرتبطة بالقضية الفلسطينية، بل هي الآن قضية سيادية تخص نظرة كل دولة لمصالحها، وبقياس تخلي العرب سابقاً عن الحرب كأداة لنصرة فلسطين، ثم تخليهم عن النفط كسلاح، يأتي التخلي عن حرمة التطبيع إعلان فك نهائيّ وشامل الارتباط بالقضية الفلسطينية، وإسقاطها من سلم الأولويات والالتزامات العربية.

يحاول بعض المتحدثين الخليجيين رمي مسؤولية هذا الانهيار الأخلاقي العربي على إيران بالقول إنه لولا الخوف الخليجي من إيران لما حدث ما حدث، لكن ما حفلت به الصحف الإسرائيلية عن التاريخ السري للعلاقات الإسرائيلية الخليجية، وحجم التنسيق والتعاون في مجالاتها المختلفة، يقول ما قالته الصحف نفسها بأن ما نشهده من إجراءات تطبيعيّة ليس إلا نقلاً لما كان في السر إلى العلن، وبالتوازي كيف يكون الذهاب لتقديم الجغرافيا العربية لـ”إسرائيل” التي تزداد فرص المواجهة بينها وبين إيران، نتيجة للخوف الخليجي من إيران، وهو يزيد فرص جعل الجغرافيا الخليجية مجرد حقل رمي إيراني لمواجهة التمدد الإسرائيلي، بينما الطبيعي عندما يكون الخوف المزعوم هو السبب أن تكون النتيجة الابتعاد عن كل استفزاز يمكن أن يصعد فرص الاستهداف.

كل هذا في كفة، وفي كفة أخرى ما هو مخفيّ بين السطور، بالتدقيق في البيان الأميركي الإسرائيلي المشترك، سنجد كل ما نحتاجه لنعرف أن الأميركي حصل على الموافقة الإسرائيلية على المضي قدماً بالتفاوض توصلاً لاتفاق على الملف النووي مع إيران، وقد تم تزيين هذه الموافقة بتعابير رنانة من نوع التعهد بمنع إيران من امتلاكها سلاحاً نووياً، وجاء ما تلاه من كلام إسرائيلي على لسان مسؤول المخابرات العسكرية في جيش الاحتلال للواشنطن بوست حول أن الاتفاق مع إيران لا يزال الطريق الأمثل لمنع امتلاكها سلاحاً نووياً يفسر هذا الاستنتاج، بعدما حمل بايدن حبات البقلاوة العربية لـ”إسرائيل”، دافعاً من جيوبهم، أثمن ما لديهم، ثمن الحصول على الموافقة الإسرائيلية التي يحتاجها ليعاود التفاوض طليق اليدين.

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Welcoming the Devil: Saudi Arabia Opens Airspace to “Israel”!

July 15, 2022 

By Staff, Agencies

In an apparent gesture to the Zionist entity, Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation announced early Friday morning that it had decided to allow “all air carriers that meet the requirements of the authority” to fly in the Kingdom’s airspace.

“Within the framework of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s keenness to fulfill its obligations under the Chicago Convention of 1944, which stipulates non-discrimination between civil aircrafts used in international air navigation, and to complement the efforts aimed at consolidating the Kingdom’s position as a global hub connecting three continents and to enhance international air connectivity, the General Authority of Civil Aviation [GACA] announces the decision to open the Kingdom’s airspace for all air carriers that meet the requirements of the Authority for overflying,” read the Kingdom’s announcement.

The decision, which does not mention “Israel” by name, comes amid US President Joe Biden’s visit to the Zionist entity and less than 24 hours before the US president is set to take off from “Ben-Gurion” Airport to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

The so-called US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan issued a statement welcoming the statement on Friday morning, saying “President Biden welcomes and commends the historic decision by the leadership of Saudi Arabia to open Saudi airspace to all civilian carriers without discrimination, a decision that includes flights to and from ‘Israel’.”

“This decision is the result of the president’s persistent and principled diplomacy with Saudi Arabia over many months, culminating in his visit today,” added Sullivan. “This decision paves the way for a more integrated, stable, and secure Middle East region, which is vital for the security and prosperity of the United States and the American people, and for the security and prosperity of ‘Israel’.”

Sullivan added that Biden will have “more to say” on the decision later on Friday as he and his staff depart on their flight directly from the “Israeli” entity to Saudi Arabia.

Biden’s Middle East Trip: No Starvation for Oil

July 13, 2022

Sana’a, Yemen. (Photo: Rod Waddington via Flickr, Supplied)

By Kathy Kelly

President Joe Biden’s foreign policy advisors are applauding themselves for devising a “sensitive” itinerary as he plans to embark on a trip to the Middle East on July 13.

In a Washington Post op-ed, Biden defended his controversial planned meeting with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud (known as MBS), saying it is meant not only to bolster US interests but also to bring peace to the region.

It seems that his trip will not include Yemen, though if this were truly a “sensitive” visit, he would be stopping at one of Yemen’s many beleaguered refugee camps. There he could listen to people displaced by war, some of whom are shell-shocked from years of bombardment. He could hear the stories of bereaved parents and orphaned children and then express true remorse for the complicity of the United States in the brutal aerial attacks and starvation blockade imposed on Yemen for the past eight years.

From the vantage point of a Yemeni refugee camp, Biden could insist that no country, including his own, has a right to invade another land and attempt to bomb its people into submission. He could uphold the value of the newly extended truce between the region’s warring parties, allowing Yemenis a breather from the tortuous years of war, and then urge ceasefires and settlements to resolve all militarized disputes, including Russia’s war in Ukraine. He could beg for a new way forward, seeking political will, universally, for disarmament and a peaceful, multipolar world.

More than 150,000 people have been killed in the war in Yemen, 14,500 of whom were civilians. But the death toll from militarily imposed poverty has been immeasurably higher. The war has caused one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world, creating an unprecedented level of hunger in Yemen, where millions of people face severe hardship.

Some 17.4 million Yemenis are food insecure; by December 2022, the projected number of hungry people will likely rise to nineteen million. The rate of child malnutrition is one of the highest in the world, and nutrition continues to deteriorate.

I grew to understand the slogan “No Blood for Oil” while living in Iraq during the 1991 Operation Desert Storm war, the 1998 Desert Fox war, and the 2003 Shock and Awe war. To control the pricing and the flow of oil, the United States and its allies slaughtered and maimed thousands of Iraqi people. Visits to Iraqi pediatric wards from 1996 to 2003 taught me a tragic expansion of that slogan. We must certainly insist: “No Starvation for Oil.”

During twenty-seven trips to Iraq, all in defiance of the US economic sanctions against Iraq, I was part of delegations delivering medicines directly to Iraqi hospitals in cities throughout the country. We witnessed the ghastly crime of punishing children to death for the sake of an utterly misguided U.S. foreign policy. The agony endured by Iraqi families who watched their children starve has now become the nightmare experience of Yemeni families.

It’s unlikely that a US President or any leader of a US-allied country will ever visit a Yemeni refugee camp, but we who live in these countries can take refuge in the hard work of becoming independent of fossil fuels, shedding the pretenses that we have a right to consume other people’s precious and irreplaceable resources at cut-rate prices and that war against children is an acceptable price to pay so that we can maintain this right.

We must urgently simplify our over-consumptive lifestyles, share resources radically, prefer service to dominance, and insist on zero tolerance for starvation.

This article first appeared in The Progressive Magazine.

مشروع بايدن: «ناتو إسرائيليّ» بأموال العرب بلا قنبلة إيرانيّة!

 الثلاثاء 28 حزيران 2022

الأحلاف، السياسية منها والعسكرية، كانت بين أبرز مرتكزات الهيمنة الأميركية على العالم (أ ف ب)
 محمد صادق الحسيني

كلّ شيء يتحرك بسرعة وفجأة من أجل تنفيذ تعليمات السيد الأميركي المختنق في الشرنقة الأوكرانية!

تتزاحم الزيارات والمصالحات بين عواصم المتخاصمين، وتعود طاولة المفاوضات النووية الى الانتعاش بشكل سريع، وتنقل بحركة أوروبية انقلابية من فيينا لتصبح على مقربة من عرش ابن سلمان المهدّد بالباليستي اليمني ويُستدعى «الحاجب «

العراقي ليقوم بدور التهدئة بين الرياض وطهران.

وتتحرك «المقاصة» المالية القطرية لتحلل ما هو محرّم على بايدن داخلياً في الوقت الراهن بخصوص إطلاق سراح الأموال الإيرانية المجمّدة.

وقد يتوّج ذلك في مسقط لتحضر بريطانيا كشريك فاعل!

إنها حركة «دمج» قرار الدولة الأميركية العميقة المهزومة عالمياً والمنسحبة من منطقتنا بحالة الضعف والهزال الصهيوني وعجزه عن حماية أمنه بنفسه لينبلج عملياً الإعلان عن «مشروع بايدن الإسرائيلي الجديد» من إحدى مدن الملح في منتصف تموز المقبل.

ودائماً على قاعدة «الضرورات تبيح المحظورات» سيبرّر الأميركي كلّ هذا للرأي العام لديه، مع تقديم ضمانات لأيتام ترامب من تل أبيب الى الرياض بأن لا قنبلة نووية ايرانية في الأفق.

ولما كان منسحباً من المنطقة كما فعل مع أفغانستان لذلك سيقول لهم جميعاً :

 تفضلوا قلعوا شوككم بأيديكم وأطلقوا نظام الدفاع الجوي المشترك، وشركاتنا المتعددة الجنسية ستؤمّن لكم كلّ ما تريدون لينتعش مجمع الصناعات الحربية الأميركي بأموال العرب…

واما عن آلية حصول ذلك، فقد أفاد مصدر دبلوماسي متابع للتحركات الجارية، بما يلي:

أولا ـ انّ الهدف الأساسي للرئيس الأميركي، من زيارته المقبلة للشرق الأوسط، هو إعادة ترتيب المنطقة من جديد، اقتصادياً وسياسياً وعسكرياً، وهو الأمر الذي يستدعي جعل إيران جزءاً لا يتجزأ من هذه الترتيبات الجديدة .

ثُانيا ـ يرى بايدن أنّ العودة الى الاتفاق النووي مع إيران هي الخطوة الأساسية لإنجاح مشروعه.

وعليه فإنّ هدف الرئيس الأميركي من وراء سعيه لدمج إيران، في مشروع إعادة صياغة الشرق الاوسط، يتمثل في ما يلي:

أ ـ تهدئة خواطر الدول الخليجية وطمأنتها على أمنها في المستقبل .

ب ـ ضبط إيقاع إيران في الشرق الأوسط مستقبلاً، من خلال تقديم إغراءات اقتصادية وتجارية لها، في إطار مشروع الدمج المُشار إليه أعلاه.

ثالثا ـ يرى بايدن انّ أمام إيران خيارين هما:

أ ـ أن تكون جزءاً من هذه الترتيبات المستقبلية.

ب ـ أو تواجه التحدي العسكري من الولايات المتحدة وحلفائها.

رابعا ـ يعتبر الرئيس الأميركي انّ معيار نجاح زيارته للشرق الأوسط هو نجاحه في العودة الى الاتفاق النووي مع إيران، والاتفاق معها على الترتيبات المستقبلية، لمنطقة الشرق الأوسط، من خلال تفاهمات ثنائية، بينها وبين واشنطن، خارج الاتفاق النووي.

خامسا ـ اما بخصوص الترتيبات العسكرية، التي يريد بايدن العمل على الشروع بتنفيذها، بين الدول العربية و»إسرائيل»، فإنّ مواقف الأطراف المعنية بهذا المشروع، هي مواقف متباعدة وليس من السهل حشدها لقبول التنفيذ.

سادسا ـ إذ انّ دولة الإمارات العربية مثلاً الدولة الأكثر اندفاعاً للمشاركة «الإسرائيلية» في التحالف العسكريّ المقترح من الولايات المتحدة لمواجهة إيران.

 بينما ترفض كلٌّ من مصر والكويت وعُمان الدخول في تحالف معادٍ لإيران وذلك لأنها لا ترى انّ إيران تشكل ايّ تهديد لأمن هذه الدول او لمصالحها العربية والاقليمية .

سابعا ـ وفي إطار موقفها، من إنشاء تحالف عسكري ضدّ إيران في الشرق الأوسط، فإنّ الإمارات و»إسرائيل» تنويان البدء بإقامة قواعد الإنذار «الإسرائيلي» المبكر في الإمارات بعد انتهاء زيارة بايدن مباشرة.

علماً انّ الجهات «الإسرائيلية» المعنية قد انتهت من نقل المعدات والتجهيزات العسكرية اللازمة لذلك الى الإمارات العربية المتحدة.

كما انّ الخبراء العسكريين «الإسرائيليين» والفنيين والمهندسين، التابعين لشركات الصناعات الجوية «الإسرائيلية»، موجودون أيضاً في الإمارات ويقومون بتنفيذ الترتيبات التحضيرية لإقامة تلك القواعد.

ويمكرون ويمكر الله، والله خير الماكرين.

بعدنا طيّبين قولوا الله…

Sabahi: ‘Israel’ is hated in Egypt, resistance noblest thing in nation

June 28, 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen Net

By Al Mayadeen English 

The Secretary-General of the Egyptian Popular Current tells Al Mayadeen that “Every nation that does not resist is a nation that is in danger of defeat.

The Secretary-General of the Egyptian Popular Current, Hamdeen Sabahi

The Secretary-General of the Egyptian Popular Current, Hamdeen Sabahi, affirmed Monday that every Arab is eager to restore Egypt to its role in the Arab nation and in defending the resistance.

In an interview for Al Mayadeen, Sabahi considered that the opposition in Egypt has been exhausted for years as a result of the restrictions imposed on it.

Sabahi acknowledged that a number of political prisoners were released in Egypt, but with a smaller number than what was expected.

The Egyptian politician called for the release of every political prisoner who was not a partner or instigator of violence, considering that if the Muslim Brotherhood movement wants to participate in a dialogue, they must initiate and request that, which means that they recognize the existing authority.

The Secretary-General of the Egyptian Popular Current pointed out that one of the things that threaten Egyptian national security is terrorism, in addition to depriving Egypt of its rights to the waters of the Nile.

Sabahi stressed that “Israel” is hated in Egypt as it was before the Camp David accords, affirming that every nation that does not resist is a nation that is subject to defeat, and resistance is the noblest thing in the Arab nation.

He added that when the Secretary-General of Hezbollah Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah takes up arms against the Israeli occupation, he raises the banner of late Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser.

He also pointed out that when the popular demands in Syria turned into confrontations that endanger the unity of Syria, the decision was to stand with the unity of this country.

Sabahi indicated that if Saudi Arabia had spent money on Arab development projects rather than spending it on weapons, the life of the Arabs would have been better.

Mossad Assassination Unit Commander Likely Killed in Erbil Attack

June 9 2022

By Staff, Agencies

Some English and Arab news sources reported that the commander of the ‘Israeli’ Mossad assassination unit was killed in a drone attack on several vehicles on a highway in Erbil, in northern Iraq on Wednesday night.

Local media said that in last night drone attack three vehicles were targeted and hit on a highway in Erbil, the Iraqi Kurdistan region.

Hours after the attack was targeted, some English and Arab sources reported that a Mossad team were in the vehicles and were the main target of the drone operation.

According to the IntelSky Twitter account, which specializes in analyzing international risks, global flight tracking and crisis news said that a senior Mossad officer was killed in the attack.

According to IntelSky, Ilak Ron [Asa Flots], the commander of the Mossad Assassination Unit was assassinated in the Kamikaze drone attack.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the drone strike, and the ‘Israeli’ officials also have not commented on the matter yet.

US troops and bases in Iraq have frequently come under rocket and drone strikes.

Anti-US sentiments have significantly increased in Iraq since the assassination of Iran’s top anti-terror commander Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, and his associates in a US drone strike in Baghdad in early 2020.

General Soleimani, commander of the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guard [IRG], and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the second-in-command of PMU, were martyred along with their associates in a US drone strike that was authorized by then-US president Donald Trump near the Baghdad International Airport on January 3, 2020.

Two days after the dastardly assassination, Iraqi lawmakers unanimously approved a bill that required the government to end the presence of all US-led foreign military forces in the Arab country.

Less than a week after the assassination, the IRG launched a volley of ballistic missiles at the Ain al-Assad airbase in western Iraq, in a military operation code-named Operation Martyr Soleimani.

Iran, which vowed ‘hard revenge’ over the killing of its celebrated commander, said the missile strike was only a “first slap” and that would not rest until the US military abandons the region in disgrace.

The US-led coalition has ended its combat mission in Iran, but thousands of soldiers remain in the country in a so-called advisory and training role.

In mid-March, the IRG launched ballistic missiles towards an area in Erbil, which housed secret bases of the Zionist regime’s Mossad spy agency. Reports, quoting Kurdistan region’s intelligence sources, said as many as 12 ballistic missiles were used in the attack.

Also in May, the IRG targeted and destroyed positions of terrorist groups operating near Erbil.

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MBS-Kushner investments could complicate vital Saudi regional diplomacy

June 05 2022

Saudi Crown Prince MbS wants Israel onside but has yet to figure out how to move forward without rocking the Saudi boat.

Source

By Agha Hussein

The Saudis need to choose: Will it be regional stability with Tehran or regional confrontation with Tel Aviv? Riyadh cannot have both.

Saudi Arabia is slated for a complete socioeconomic overhaul under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s (MbS) ambitious Vision2030, which aims to steer the kingdom towards a post-oil economy. For this to be realized, peace and political stability with Saudi’s neighbors is essential.

In this context, Riyadh sees diplomatic engagement with rival Iran as crucial to addressing the security dilemmas the kingdom faces from neighboring Yemen, Iraq and the Persian Gulf, which have the potential to derail progress on Saudi’s reform program.

However, MbS’ recent signals toward Israel could hinder the kingdom’s efforts to formalize the Iran-Saudi diplomatic ‘framework‘ aimed at bringing stability to its borders.

MbS and Israel

On 7 May, The Wall Street Journal reported that Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund (PIF) – of which MbS is chairman – committed $2 billion to a private equity fund for Israeli tech startups. This represents the first known case of the PIF investing in Israeli businesses.

The fund belongs to Jared Kushner, former US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and informal advisor who worked with MbS to draw Saudi foreign policy closer to Israeli interests.

During the Trump administration, Kushner and MbS formed a close interpersonal relationship. Kushner bypassed the US State and Defense Departments and dealt directly with the crown prince, helping him to consolidate power in return for closer alignment with Israel on Iran.

However, MbS eventually decided that the kingdom needed de-escalation with Iran as a means of addressing its growing security dilemmas in Yemen and the Persian Gulf. Citing the tensions it was causing with Iran, MbS took a step back from his partnership with Kushner by declining to join the August 2020 Abraham Accords struck between Israel and the UAE and Bahrain, which Kushner played a lead role in facilitating.

This was followed by an Iraqi-mediated dialogue initiated between Tehran and Riyadh in October 2021, which has continued with a few intervals up to the present.

What about Iran?

Now, the investment in Kushner’s fund says two things about MbS’ current priorities. One, that the crown prince retains interest in finding niches of Israeli-Saudi cooperation, and two, that he intends to do so via the old, familiar approach with Kushner as a key broker and interlocutor.

But this challenges an important element of Iranian-Saudi diplomacy: namely, that both states’ compartmentalize their many differences across West Asia for the sake of detente and stability in their immediate, shared Persian Gulf region.

The Islamic Republic for its part has a very regionalized national security doctrine, which emphasizes keeping Israeli influence away from its own borders. Tehran may interpret MbS’ overtures to Israel as a sign that the Saudi talks are not promising outcomes consistent with its national security objectives.

If this is the case, Iran could decide to withdraw from the talks altogether. Indeed, Iran temporarily halted the Iraqi-brokered dialogue with Saudi Arabia in March when it launched missile strikes at purported Israeli Mossad sites in Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan.

Additionally, since economic diversification is a key pillar of Vision2030, Iran may view the investment in Kushner’s fund as MbS integrating Israel into his own bigger-picture. From Tehran’s perspective, this is counterproductive to Iran’s desired scenario of an Israel-free Persian Gulf and therefore does not bode well for the continuity of Iranian-Saudi diplomacy.

Ties with Turkey

Saudi Arabia’s relations with Turkey, another West Asian powerhouse, have recently thawed under Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s efforts to mend fences with the kingdom.

While Turkey’s angle has more to do with building economic and security ties, for Riyadh this entente has special importance for its overall regional diplomacy. This is because the tension in Turkish-Saudi ties is associated heavily with the 2018 state-sanctioned murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, reportedly at the personal behest of MbS.

The fallout from the murder made MbS persona non grata for many in the international community, and he remained a pariah until only relatively recently amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the ensuing energy crisis.

This proved especially inconvenient when MbS began his urgent tilt to a more diplomatic foreign policy. Riyadh’s access to various diplomatic channels was suddenly very limited because of MbS’ personal, unilateral control over Saudi decision-making. Indeed, even Saudi Arabia’s (partial) rapprochement with Qatar, ending a three-and-a-half year blockade, required Kushner’s mediation.

Two weeks before Erdogan’s 28 April visit to Riyadh, a Turkish court transferred the trial of Khashoggi’s Saudi assassins to the kingdom. Thus, since Erdogan sees shoring up MbS’ international standing as necessary for their entente, the latter has reason to ensure that Ankara gets a degree of geopolitical value out of it too.

Critically, this is where the risk that MbS’ Israel outreach poses to Iranian-Saudi diplomacy, could spill over to the budding Turkish-Saudi normalization.

Turkey’s overtures to MbS have occurred in parallel with its rapprochement with Israel. If Turkish-Saudi dialogue covers regional agendas instead of just bilateral ones, Iran may well suspect the two of eyeing a bloc and drawing Israel toward it as a mutual ally.

Keeping Israel out

Iran would overplay its hand and damage its diplomatic credibility by raking up Turkey in dialogue with Saudi Arabia, as the latter could interpret this as Iranian heavy-handedness and drop the idea that Iran is able or willing to help it de-escalate matters in Yemen and the Persian Gulf.

Tehran does not want this to happen, as it has tactically benefited from playing the Yemen/Gulf de-escalation card: both to bring Riyadh to the negotiating table, and to show it that avoiding Israel is a worthy trade-off to cool tensions with Iran’s allies in Yemen and even Iraq.

Conversely, if Iran accepts that it cannot force the Turkish factor into its talks with Saudi Arabia, its diplomatic strategy toward Riyadh provides no recourse against the possibility of MbS asking Ankara to help connect him to Tel Aviv.

In this scenario, continuing the Saudi talks presents Iran with a credibility crisis – that of its ability to enforce its national security red-lines by pressuring or incentivizing its neighbors to avoid Israel. This could lead to Tehran abandoning the dialogue with Riyadh, or putting it on ice.

Vision or Mirage?

Saudi Arabia needs harmony, not contradictions and conflicts, between its various diplomatic processes and dialogues, both to properly restore MbS’ international reputation and to provide the stability the kingdom needs for Vision2030’s implementation.

The diplomatic cadre in Riyadh seems aware of this, going by the Saudi Foreign Minister’s statement on 24 May that the kingdom’s hands are ‘stretched out to Iran’.

Currently, Riyadh’s most obvious and potentially impactful option to de-escalate tensions across the region is to continue its dialogue with Tehran. Shelving ties with Israel is a small price to pay for the stability-dividends it offers Saudi Arabia.

Biden’s trip to Saudi Arabia, “Israel” postponed: NBC News

June 4, 2022 

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen English 

The US president’s visit to Saudi Arabia – whom he deems a ‘pariah’ – and Washington’s spoiled child, “Israel”, has been postponed, according to officials.

Joe Biden, feeling happy. 

US President Joe Biden’s visits to Saudi Arabia and “Israel” have been postponed till July, NBC News reported. The postponed trip will see an expansion, a “broader trip to the Middle East,” according to the sources.

“We are working on a trip to Israel and Saudi Arabia for a GCC+3 Summit,” a senior administration official told NBC News. “We are working to confirm dates. When we have something to announce, we will.”

One foreign diplomat, in addition to two US officials, revealed that the visit to Saudi Arabia will no longer be carried out in June. Two other US officials said that the “Israel” visit was being postponed, although both visits were scheduled along with visits to Germany and Spain this month.

The motive behind the postponement was not clear, however. The dates, furthermore, could even change again. The White House declined to comment, and the Israeli and the Saudi embassies in the US did not respond to any questions. 

Biden is about to set all his ‘moral’ reasonings aside as he makes his visit to Saudi Arabia, despite dubbing the country a ‘pariah’ state for killing Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018. The US will be setting its positions aside for the energy and oil crisis which has risen as a result of the NATO-fueled war on Russian oil and exports

Read more: US-Saudi relations reach ‘breaking point’ – WSJ

The US president is expected to meet Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman -the man behind Khashoggi’s assassination- once he lands in Riyadh, despite his assertions that his meetings would exclusively be with King Salman bin Abdulaziz as he is his proper counterpart.

He will also meet with the heads of several Arab nations, including Iraq, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, and Jordan.

The visit will see Biden abandoning many of the “morals” he has been trying to uphold before the public, and it all goes back to the Ukraine war, as Washington deems it necessary to have other energy producers on its side after it sanctioned Russia out of the global oil market.

Reports about the visit – ironically – come the same day as White House Spokeswoman Karen Jean-Pierre said Biden’s “pariah” remarks about Saudi Arabia still stood.

Jean-Pierre was asked how after US intelligence assessed that MBS was behind the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, to which she replied that a visit to Saudi Arabia would be consistent with Biden’s remarks last year that Saudi Arabia would “pay the price, and make them, in fact, the pariah that they are.”

Biden To Visit Saudi Arabia, To Meet ‘Pariah’ MBS 

By Staff, Agencies

US President Joe Biden has decided to travel to Saudi Arabia in the coming weeks and is expected to meet with the kingdom’s crown prince Mohammad Bin Salman [MBS], whom he once shunned for his brutality. It’s a visit that is coming together as OPEC+, which is led by Riyadh, announced Thursday it will pump more oil amid skyrocketing energy costs around the globe.

Biden’s first trip to the Saudi kingdom as president is likely to occur later this month but details have not been finalized. Biden is also expected to visit “Israel” during the trip.

The White House on Thursday praised Saudi Arabia for its role securing an OPEC+ pledge to pump more oil and the president himself lauded the Saudis for agreeing to a cease-fire extension in its eight-year old aggression on Yemen that was also announced Thursday.

“Saudi Arabia demonstrated courageous leadership by taking initiatives early on to endorse and implement terms of the UN-led truce,” Biden said in a statement after the 60-day extension of the cease fire was announced.

The kingdom’s leadership also had a close relationship with former US president Donald Trump, who largely shielded Saudi Arabia from repercussions after Khashoggi’s killing.

Biden administration officials have been working behind the scenes to repair relations, discussing shared strategic interests in security and oil with their Saudi counterparts. 

The White House is weighing a Biden visit that would also include a meeting of the leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council countries — Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates — as well as Egypt, Iraq and Jordan, according to the person familiar with White House planning, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the yet-to-be finalized trip.

Biden would be expected to meet with MBS during the visit, according to the person.

Such a meeting could ease a tense and uncertain period in the partnership between Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, and the United States, the world’s top economic and military power, that has stood for more than three-quarters of a century.

But it also risks a public humbling for the US leader, who in 2019 pledged to make a “pariah” of the Saudi royal family over the killing of Khashoggi.

Ansarullah Leader: US Seeking To Take Control over Muslim Nations, Plunder Their National Assets

June 3, 2022 

By Staff, Agencies

Leader of Yemen’s Ansarullah resistance movement Sayyed Abdul Malik Badreddine al-Houthi said the United States is aggressively seeking to exert its absolute dominance over Muslim nations, stressing that Washington cashed in on the September 11 attacks to accomplish the objective.

“Enemies are trying to appoint the Israeli enemy as the direct representative of the United States and the West in the region,” Sayyed al-Houthi said in a televised speech broadcast live from the Yemeni capital city of Sana’a on Thursday while addressing a ceremony held to commemorate former Ansarullah chief Martyr Sayyed Hussein Badreddine al-Houthi.

“All the actions of enemies prompt us to take a firm stance in the face of existing dangers and the ongoing all-out offensives,” he said, noting that the United States and its allies had plans to occupy Arab and Muslim countries and attack other states.

The Ansarullah leader continued, “Hussein Badreddine al-Houthi aimed his condemnations at aggressors, and adopted the approach of countering hostile attacks against the Muslim nation [Ummah].”

Stating that his slogan of “the cry in the face of the arrogant” shows the anger and protest of the Muslim Ummah against the conspiracies, Sayyed al-Houthi noted that the purpose of this slogan is to protect the internal arena of Muslims from influence, because the US attacks are comprehensive in all areas.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Sayyed al-Houthi stated that ‘Israel’ is trying to utilize American and Western measures in order to completely annihilate the Palestinian cause, emphasizing that Washington and the Tel Aviv regime do not want any country to stand in the way of their plots and that they want to implement their conspiracies in Muslim countries.

“Late Houthi’s motto centered on humanity and disowning enemies. The motto was meant to empower Muslim nations both militarily and economically, and exposed the hollow nature of enemies’ claims about freedom of opinion and expression,” the Ansarullah leader pointed out.

Sayyed al-Houthi underlined that losses and regrets inevitably await all those who bank on friendship with the enemies of the Muslim world, saying, “Many Arab regimes are moving towards friendship with the ‘Israeli’ enemy and forging economic partnership with it.”

The Ansarullah leader stated that Zionist lobbyists harbor hostility towards Islam, noting that those who are serving the Tel Aviv regime are actually turning a blind eye to ‘Israeli’ crimes being perpetrated on a daily basis in the occupied Palestinian territories.

“Whatever action that benefits the ‘Israeli’ enemy is a hostile act, which targets Palestinians and the rest of the Muslim world,” Sayyed al-Houthi said.

He also said that Washington has been targeting Yemen in all areas, including politics, economy, security and culture.

Sayyed al-Houthi further noted that the US and its allies resorted to an atrocious military campaign against Yemen after losing hope of controlling the country politically.

“They have, however, failed to achieve their goals due to the spirited steadfastness and resistance of the Yemeni nation,” the Ansarullah chief said.

“Yemenis will not give in to any campaign against their country,” Sayyed al-Houthi said, emphasizing that resistance is the only path to victory against the enemies of the country.

Al-Houthi: Our cry is the voice of the nation against the plans of the enemies

Ansarullah Leader: Zionist Assaults On Al-Aqsa Mosque a Threat to All Muslims

May 31, 2022

By Staff, Agencies

Leader of Yemen’s Ansarullah resistance movement, Sayyed Abdul-Malik Badreddine al-Houthi, said in a televised address on Monday that the ‘Israeli’ attacks on al-Aqsa Mosque were provocative and desecrated Muslim holy sites.

“The Jewish-Zionist threat is a threat to all Muslims, that targets the sanctities of the nation,” Sayyed al-Houthi said.

The desecration, incursions and attacks are carried out with the aim of demolishing al-Aqsa Mosque, he added.

“With all earnestness, we announce that we are part of the equation stated by [Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence] Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and that we will be ready to fight for the sake of God,” he said.

Sayyed al-Houthi said the goal of the Americans and the ‘Israelis’ is complete and direct control over the wealth and destiny of the Islamic Ummah.

Pointing to the Saudi aggression in Yemen, the Ansarullah leader said the invasion of Yemen is within the framework of empowering and strengthening ‘Israel’ and removing any hurdle and challenge to the regime.

“The ‘Israeli’ enemy encouraged fools and hypocrites to invade Yemen to pay the price, no matter what,” Sayyed al-Houthi said, referring to Saudi Arabia and the war coalition against Yemen. “The Saudi and Emirati media operate similar to the ‘Israeli’ media, although in different languages.”

The Ansarullah leader also said the world is on the brink of a food crisis due to US, ‘Israeli’ and Western conspiracies which, he said, are “preparing to block the export of some countries to the Islamic world in order to create a food crisis.”

Israel’ Publicly Announces It’s Working with US, Gulf States on Normalization with Saudi Arabia

May 31, 202

By Staff, Agencies

The Tel Aviv occupation regime is coordinating with the United States and Gulf nations on a process to normalize its ties with Saudi Arabia, Zionist Foreign Minister Yair Lapid confessed Monday.

“We believe that it is possible to have a normalization process with Saudi Arabia. It’s in our interest,” Lapid boasted in remarks to ‘Israeli’ Army Radio.

“We’ve already said that this is the next step after the ‘Abraham Accords,’ to talk about a long and careful process,” he added, referring to the 2020 US-backed normalization deals the ‘Israeli’ occupation entity reached with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco.

“We’re working with the US and the Gulf states on this.”

Despite the fact the Saudi Arabia didn’t announce having official diplomatic ties with the ‘Israeli’ occupation entity yet, covert ties have warmed in recent years. Saudi crown prince Mohammad bin Salman reportedly sees the Tel Aviv regime as a strategic partner in the fight against Iranian influence in the region.

Lapid warned that the process of normalization with Saudi Arabia would be a lengthy one with progress coming in small steps, stressing that both sides have security interests at stake.

“This won’t happen the same way it did last time,” Lapid said in reference to the surprising and rapid nature in which the 2020 normalization deals were announced. “We won’t wake up one morning suddenly and it will be a surprise.”

“It could be that three foreign ministers after me, someone will be standing on the podium and will celebrate this,” Lapid explained the scenario.

His comments came as Saudi Arabia hosted dozens of ‘Israeli’ tech entrepreneurs and businesspeople recently for advanced talks on Saudi investments in ‘Israeli’ companies and ‘Israeli’ investment funds, according to a Sunday report in the Globes business daily.

Last week, a pair of senior US officials were reportedly in Saudi Arabia for covert talks on an agreement that could boost Washington’s ties with Riyadh while also bringing the kingdom closer to normalizing relations with the Tel Aviv regime.

According to the Axios news site, the trip was part of efforts to finalize an agreement on the transfer of Egypt’s Red Sea islands of Tiran and Sanafir to Saudi Arabia.

Additionally, Riyadh hosted a senior Zionist official recently for talks on various aspects of security and other coordination, Channel 12 news reported Friday, without citing a source.

The Yedioth Ahronoth daily also reported meetings between figures from both sides, without providing any further information.

The reports come ahead of US President Joe Biden’s expected visit to the Middle East, which will include stops in both the ‘Israeli’-occupied Palestinian territories and Saudi Arabia.

ليس سواها ما يدعو للأمل

 الأربعاء 25 أيار 2022

 ناصر قنديل

كلما أصغينا أكثر للكلام السياسي في الشأن الداخلي، وكلما أمعنا النظر في أحوال الناس والبلاد، زاد الشعور بالعبث يسيطر على كل شيء، والأنا المتضخّمة تتغوّل على حساب المصلحة الوطنية، والابتعاد عن أولويات الناس لحساب استرضاء صناع الأضواء من قنوات تلفزيونيّة وسفارات، فيصير الأبيض أسود والأسود أبيض. فالتسابق على تسمية الكتلة المسيحية الأكبر ضرورة على طريق السباق الرئاسي، وبالوقت ذاته إدارة الظهر لإجماع نواب طائفة على ترشيح رئيس مجلس النواب، والسيادة شعار يرفع بوجه المقاومة وسلاحها، وتسقط جدرانها عندما يزف السفير السعودي بشرى النصر في الانتخابات معلناً أبوّته لما أسموه بنصر التغيير، ونواب التغيير الذين يتحدثون عن اللاطائفية بصفتها نصاً دستورياً ينسون أن يقرأوا المادة 95 من الدستور التي رسمت خريطة طريق للإلغاء. فتكريس التوزيع الطائفي قائم في النص الدستوريّ، بخلاف ما يقوله أحد منظري التغيير، وطريق الخروج منه واضح، هيئة وطنية لإلغاء الطائفية ومجلس نيابي خارج القيد الطائفي ومجلس للشيوخ، ثم إلغاء طائفية وظائف الفئة الأولى، قبل الوصول للرئاسات، التي تشكل المداورة فيها حلماً صعب التحقق. فكيف بإلغائها، فيصير النقاش بلا جدوى، حيث نواب لا يقرأون وإن قرأوا لا يفهمون، وإن فهموا لا يعرفون، وإن عرفوا لا يعترفون.

الدولار يقفز سريعاً، فيخرج البطريرك بشارة الراعي يقول إن المسؤول هو الخاسر في الانتخابات، والهدف هو الانقلاب على النتائج، والكلام على طريقة «الخسن والخسين بنات معاوية ولدتا في اسطمبول»، فمن يفترضه خاسراً لم يخسر، ومن يظنّه منتصراً لم ينتصر، ومن يقول إنه مسؤول ليس مسؤولاً، والمسؤول معلوم وسبق للبطريرك أن أعلنه خطاً أحمر. ومن قال إن الحل في الانتخابات، سواء كان رئيس القوات أو نواب التغيير، غير معنيّ اليوم بالتفسير، كيف يترجمون نظرية الانتخابات هي الحل، وقد وضعوا أهدافاً لما بعد الانتخابات لا مكان فيها لأولويات الناس، التي تتمثل بتسهيل استيلاد حكومة تكون خلال شهور ما قبل الاستحقاق الرئاسيّ، هيئة حوار لوضع كل القضايا الخلافية فوق الطاولة، وتضع ما يمكن اتخاذه من قرارات تنفيذيّة بسرعة لمعالجة ما يمكن معالجته بأسرع ما يمكن، وبدلاً من ذلك يتواصل خطاب التحدّي وهو حق لأصحابه، لكنه طريق للتعقيد فالتصعيد فقطع الطريق على أيّة تسويات، لا حكومة بدونها، ولا رئاسة بدونها، وبدونهما أيّ الحكومة والرئاسة، لا مؤسسات لدولة يفترض أن بناءها كان شعار التغيير. ونظرية إسقاط المنظومة طريقها هو الانتخابات، والانتخابات انتهت، ويُفترض أن ما بعدها عمل وأمل، لا صراخ وفخاخ وربما فراخ!

في مثل هذا اليوم قبل اثنين وعشرين عاماً خرج لبنان من العتمة إلى الضوء، وكل أصحاب الضجيج لم يكن لهم يدٌ في ذلك، وحدهم الذين يتلقون في صدورهم اليوم سهام التجريح والاتهام كانوا أصحاب الفضل، فتحقق النصر واندحر الاحتلال، ولولا هذه المقاومة ما كان أمن ولا كانت دولة، وتبع نصر التحرير نصر الردع وردّ العدوان في 2006، فتحقق للبنان استقرار ثابت وراسخ بخروجه من دائرة الاستهداف طوال ستة عشر عاماً، وبفضل هذه المقاومة فرض لبنان حضوره في البحر وثروات النفط والغاز، فاضطر الإسرائيليّ لانتظار التفاوض، واضطر الأميركي لإطلاق الوساطة. ولولا هذه المقاومة لبدأ الإسرائيلي استخراج ثرواتنا وتصرّف بها، وكل ما بين أيدينا وفقاً لوصفات المتربّصين بالمقاومة وسلاحها، الشكوى لمجلس الأمن، وقد خبرها اللبنانيون اثنين وعشرين سنة ما بين الاجتياح الإسرائيلي الثاني عام 1978 والتحرير عام 2000، فلم تسمن ولم تُغنِ عن جوع. وبفضل هذه المقاومة صار الخيار العسكريّ لفرض الهيمنة الخارجية والفتنة الداخلية معلقاً، حيث مَن يريد لا يقدر ومَن يقدر لا يريد، فتحصّن السلم الأهلي.

منسوب الكرامة الذي حققته انتصارات المقاومة كان فوق مستوى قدرة السياسة في لبنان على التحمّل، ولولا هذه المقاومة لما كان هناك ما يدعو للأمل.

مرة أخرى يبدو أن الحلول لن تأتي من نضج الداخل، بل من حاجة الخارج لتسويات يجبره على البحث عنها وجود المقاومة وقوتها، فنتحمل تخلف الداخل وتفاهة السياسة فيه وقصر نظر السياسيين وعبثهم، بقوة صبر وبصيرة هذه المقاومة.

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Tortured Death Row Bahraini Prisoners at Risk of Execution by Saudi Regime

May 23, 2022

By Sondos al-Assad

Lebanon – Two Bahraini nationals Sadeq Thamer [33] and Jaafar Sultan [30], who have exhausted all their appeals, are at imminent risk of execution by Saudi regime, on the basis of his torture-tainted “confessions”. The young men have been arrested, without a warrant, on May 8, 2015, while crossing King Fahd Causeway.

They have been subjected to enforced disappearance [for 115 days], severely tortured and accused of “transporting explosive materials”. According to rights groups, 25 days after their arrest, they were supposed to be transferred to Bahrain. However, while they were on the bus, a Bahraini officer received a call and began to insult and threaten them with reprisal. Then, they were returned to the Saudi territories.

On the same day, their houses in Bahrain were violently stormed by individuals belonging to the Bahraini Criminal Investigations Directorate in civilian clothes. The policemen confiscated a laptop, computer, and phones, and their families were not informed about their whereabouts.

Sadeq and Jaafar were then taken to the Saudi General Investigation Prison in Dammam, where they were placed in solitary confinement for nearly 115 days [4 months].

After their families reached out to various Bahraini and Saudi governmental bodies, Sadeq and Jaafar were allowed to call but mentioned nothing about the condition of their detention and investigations.

During the first family visit, on 13 October 2015, Sadeq and Jaafar informed their parents that they were forcibly pressured to confess under severe and inhumane physical and psychological torture. In court, Jaafar told the lawyer that he was transferred to the hospital for 10 days because of torture and that he was threatened too with torturing his family members. Likewise, Sadeq was mal-treated, beaten, and threatened to be tortured and held incommunicado when refusing to sign the fabricated charges.

The Saudi Public Prosecution charged Sadeq and Jaafar with allegedly joining a terrorist cell, smuggling explosive materials, and misleading the Saudi investigation authorities. Then a Saudi Specialized Criminal Court sentenced them to death on 7 October 2021. Noting that also Bahrain’s 4th High Criminal Court sentenced them on 31 May 2016 to life imprisonment and a fine of 200000 BHD dinars for the same charges.

Sadeq and Jaafar are prominent religious and social activists and apparently, their arbitrary conviction is politically-motivated.

The use of the death penalty has dramatically escalated over the past decade in Bahrain, specifically rising by more than 600%, with at least 5 citizens being executed for political reasons. Despite pledges for human rights reform, some 26 men in Bahrain are currently facing imminent execution, 12 of whose convictions were based on false torture and were convicted of “terrorism” charges.

For its part, the Saudi authorities executed last March 81 individuals, marking a sharp rise in the number of recorded executions. This appalling death toll is likely to be an underestimate, as Saudi authorities do not publish statistics on executions or the number of prisoners on death row; nor do they inform families or lawyers in advance of executions.

Torture is rampant in Saudi Arabia, and courts regularly admit torture-tainted “confessions” as evidence. Thus, sentencing torture survivors to death for their peaceful activism is a heinous crime. While Sadeq and Jaafar’s helpless families await the news in anguish, the uncertainty of knowing that they could be murdered at any moment is an unspeakable strain!

Kingdom of Blood: Saudi Regime Beheads Two Activists from Qatif Province

May 15, 2022

By Staff, Agencies

The Saudi kingdom of blood has yet another time committed a heinous crime against the peaceful activists of the Shia-populated Qatif province.

As part of a heavy-handed crackdown led by Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman [MBS] against political dissidents and pro-democracy campaigners, the Riyadh regime executed two young men from the Qatif over trumped-up allegations of involvement in terrorist activities.

The Saudi Ministry of Interior alleged in a statement on Saturday that the death sentences were carried out against Hussein Ali Al Abu Abdullah and Mohammad Khodr al-Awami.

The ministry further claimed that the Saudi nationals “collaborated with terrorist groups, fomented unrest and insecurity in the country, possessed weapons, ammunition as well as rocket-propelled grenades and attempted to disrupt national security.”

Last month, two human rights organizations filed a complaint at the United Nations against arbitrary executions in Saudi Arabia, especially after the execution of dozens of prisoners in a single day in the ultra-conservative kingdom.

The European Saudi Organization for Human Rights [ESOHR] and Reprieve, a UK-based non-profit organization of international lawyers and investigators, said the Riyadh regime openly declared its disregard for international principles as well as its commitments and obligations through the executions of 81 men, 41 of whom were Shia Muslims, in March.

Social media users have reported heavy deployment of Saudi security forces in the city of Qatif to crush any protest against the recent execution of scores of dissidents.

State news agency Saudi Press Agency said on March 12 that the authorities had executed 81 people in one day on a variety of offences.

The 2022 executions exceeded the total number of Saudi Arabia’s punishments by death throughout last year.

Back in early January 2016, Saudi authorities also executed 47 people, including prominent Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr Baqir al-Nimr, who had vociferously called for democracy in the kingdom and advocated anti-regime protests. Nimr had been arrested in Qatif, Eastern Province, in 2012.

Since 2015, Saudi Arabia has reportedly executed more than 900 prisoners in an increasing rate. In 2019 alone, Saudi Arabia set a record number of executions after authorities executed 184 people, despite a general decrease in the number of executions around the world.

Ever since MBS became Saudi Arabia’s de facto leader in 2017, the kingdom has arrested dozens of activists, bloggers, intellectuals and others perceived as political opponents, showing almost zero tolerance for dissent even in the face of international condemnations of the crackdown.

Human rights activists warn that Saudi officials are planning to execute over 40 teenagers over their participation in anti-regime protests in the Shia-majority Qatif region.

Muslim scholars have been executed and women’s rights campaigners have been put behind bars and tortured as freedom of expression, association, and belief continue to be denied.

Over the past years, Riyadh has also redefined its anti-terrorism laws to target activism.

Lebanese Elections 2022: Purchasing Votes vs. Coordinated, Clear Program to Handle Lebanon’s Crises

May 12, 2022

By Mohammad Youssef

The electoral process for Lebanon’s parliamentary election has already started for the Lebanese expatriates. This has put an end for all the rumors, speculations and skepticism that it is not going to take place. Meanwhile, the preparations for the elections inside Lebanon on May 15 are lively and vibrant.

The event, of course is very important and comes at a very sensitive juncture of the country’s history. Many international and regional parties, namely the United States and Saudi Arabia, along with their local agents pin hopes that the result of the elections will pave the way for a major transformation in the political scene which could usher in a new era for a new chapter of heightened and more intense presence in the Lebanese politics.

Those countries have given a signal and directives for their local agents to open fire on Hezbollah arms and to raise slogans about disarming the resistance as the only goal of their electoral campaigns.

However, the turnout of the first and preliminary elections outside the country was not up to their expectations.

First, the proportions of those who participated didn’t match their anticipations. The ‘Lebanese Forces’ party and its allies expected 80 percent participation, especially in Saudi Arabia, Australia and other countries where they play their ground. They openly and vulgarly threatened those who do not vote for their electoral list to be kicked out of those countries. Moreover, they used every possible tool to propagate their electoral advertisement.

In Lebanon, the Saudi ambassador and in a very vulgar breach of the diplomatic norms has visited some candidates in different parts of the country and lobbied for their support.

News about bribes and votes purchase are upcoming from every area where the pro-American and pro-Saudi camp is active.

It is noteworthy that regardless of all of this, this front has not been able so far to yield any success in its efforts to present a unified image about its campaigns and goals.

On the other hand, the counter front represented by Hezbollah and its allies, has shown a very coordinated performance and sent images and messages of strength to the public.

The coordinated efforts and organized campaigns, along with the crowded rallies of their supporters have greatly added to Hezbollah and its allies’ already very positive public image.

The electoral program of the party and its domestic priorities in reform, fighting corruption, and remedying economy and financial crisis is doable and promises salvation.

If the results of what happened in the election front so far are to be taken as an indicator to the final results, one can simply predict that Hezbollah and its allies are going to win the elections and the majority again.

Hopefully, this will happen. If so, the Lebanese people will be surely experiencing a new way of approaching and solving their different problems in democratic and peaceful ways, yet with more bold and sovereign decision to discard all foreign pressures and blackmail. Such a handling will prioritize the Lebanese interest and work accordingly.

It is a long way to go, maybe, but it is the method and venue to salvation and rescue that has no replacement.

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Erdogan’s Plan to Israelize Northern Syria with a Million Settlers on Track

ARABI SOURI 

Israelize northern Syria is the real plot: reports from Turkey claim that the Turkish madman Erdogan is planning to ‘return’ up to a million Syrian refugees to their country with the help of city councils in Azaz, Jarabulus, and Tal Abyad.

One of the sites, the Saudi regime’s mouthpiece Al Arabiya reported: ‘Erdogan said on Tuesday that Ankara was aiming to encourage one million Syrian refugees to return to their country by building them housing and local infrastructure there.’

Saudi Bin Salman’s propaganda outlet claimed that Turkey is home to more than 3.6 million Syrian refugees,’ adding ‘Erdogan is facing rising public anger over the refugees’ presence and is wary of the issue dominating next year’s presidential and parliamentary elections.’

From my knowledge of this creep flip-flop hypocrite mafia-business partner, and war criminal Erdogan, I believe he’s ‘returning’ the families of his followers, not the Syrians uprooted from those areas infested by the Turkish army and a collection of terrorist groups spanning from the so-called National Army to ISIS (ISIL) all of which follow the same offshoot sect of Islam that Erdogan managed to radicalize the Sufi sect of Turkey into.

The Turkish madman Erdogan is replacing the people of northern Syria with terrorists and their families from other areas and from other countries from China to Latin America who joined the ranks of the ‘foreign legion’ he helped create.

That foreign legion includes his beloved and loyal anti-Islamic Muslim Brotherhood and Wahhabi terrorists including the Chinese Uighur, the Northern Africans, and others from the Central Asian stans of Turkic origins he collected.

We have repeatedly reported that the Turkish neo-Ottoman sultan wannabe wants to Israelize a buffer region in northern Syria to separate secular Syria from the radical Muslim Brotherhood Turkey he and his AKP clan are ruling (see hereherehere, and in other places on our site,) we devised the term ‘Israelize‘ to describe these evil plans.

On the other hand, the NATO-sponsored Kurdish SDF separatist terrorists have been actively working on a similar agenda to Israelize the parts of northern Syria they occupy with the help of the Biden oil thieves regiment of the US Army, also with the help of Israel and all of NATO combined, even Russia had supported them in the past and is yet to declare a new position toward their war crimes against the Syrian people in the provinces of Hasakah, Deir Ezzor, Raqqa, and Aleppo.

Make no mistake, the Saudis are hand-in-hand with the Turks, Qataris, US, Israelis, and the rest of NATO in the plot against Syria, any differences between them do not affect their joint efforts to destroy the Levantine country and slaughter its people, Syria, the last secular nation in the region and way beyond is an existential threat to entities like the temporary settlement dubbed Israel, the Al Saud fiefdom dubbed Saudi Arabia, the Arabia gas station dubbed Qatar (pronounced Gutter), and what Turkey has turned into under the rule of the UK empire-invented Muslim Brotherhood clan.

If Erdogan manages to carry out his agenda, he will be planting the seeds of a never-ending civil war his masters in Tel Aviv and Washington have long sought for the region. There will be no rest in the places where people were forcibly uprooted from their land and their land was gifted by those who do not own it to other people who do not deserve it; more than a century of the Palestinian cause hasn’t taught these fanatics that the real owners of the land will not give away their rights to their land to imported settlers even if all of the world’s superpowers and super-rich countries with all their evilness work toward achieving such war crime.

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The Saudi-Yemeni Ceasefire Is on the Edge!

May 5, 2022

By Mohammad Sleem

Beirut – On April 2, an agreement between Yemen and the countries of the US-backed Saudi-led aggression has been reached. The ceasefire which took effect, was supposed to last for two months, after seven years of aggression and siege on the already impoverished country. However, the Saudi-led coalition reneged on the agreement and breached Yemeni sovereignty several times.

How were these breaches distributed?

The first breach was on the April 8 where US-Saudi aggression mercenaries launched a large-scale march on the south of Marib on Friday. A military source stated that the popular committees responded to the advance of mercenaries, pointing out that this action coincided with intensive flights of the coalition aircrafts in Yemeni airspace.

The second breach was when a residential neighborhood in Taaz governorate was targeted with heavy artillery. This showed the real intentions behind the earlier announced stance as civilians expressed their condemnation to the criminal act that violated the international law.

Furthermore, on April 20, a military source reported that Saudi aircrafts had breached Hajja, Sanaa, Maarib, Amran, and Saada provinces 59 times to-date, according to Sabaa agency.

Moreover, two people were killed by the Saudi army on the northern borders of Yemen on April 27 in Shada province – Saada governorate, recording a new breach.

Nonetheless, two humanitarian flights from Jordan and Egypt to Sanaa Airport had been agreed upon weekly during the two-months ceasefire. Several days ago, the Saudi aggression announced the cancelation of these flights alleging that the passengers who are being selected as patients from Sanaa are actually Iranian backed-up groups who are trying to manipulate these trips.

Regarding the cancelation of the trips, Yemeni Minister of Health Taha al Motawakel told Yemen’s al-Masirah network, “It is the most important item in the ceasefire agreement. The cancelation of the trips reveals the real intentions of the Saudi-led coalition and its moral free-fall, as an intended siege is taking place on Yemen, which makes things worse for more than 30,000 patients who need to undergo treatment outside Yemen”.

In accordancse with the aforementioned, the Saudi-led coalition proves again that its honesty towards the Yemeni people is fake, as hundreds who have suffered from the aggression need treatment and the countries backing the war deliberately tightened the noose on Yemen, once again revealing its true face.

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Yemeni Forces Down Spy Drone over Hajjah

May 4, 2022

Yemeni revolutionary forces shot down a Saudi unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) over Hajjah governorate overnight on Tuesday.

Yemeni Armed Forces Spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Saree said early on Wednesday that Yemeni air defenses managed to down a Saudi combat drone while it was conducting a hostile mission over Harad directorate in Hajjah governorate.

Saree said the the Chinese-made “CH4” drone was shot down with a local-made surface-to-air missile.

Yemen has been since March 25, 2015 under aggression by the Saudi-led coalition in a bid to restore power to fugitive president Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who is Riyadh’s ally.

Tens of thousands of Yemenis have been killed or injured by Saudi-led airstrikes.

The Arab country has been also under harsh blockade b the coalition which includes in addition to the Kingdom, the UAE, Jordan, Bahrain, Kuwait, Egypt, Morocco and Sudan.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

Normalization Mode On: ‘Israeli’ Aircraft Lands in Riyadh

 May 3, 2022 

By Staff

After taking off from Tel Aviv, ‘Israeli’ media reported that a private ‘Israeli’ jet of type 9H-JPC landed in Riyadh on Monday.

According to ‘Israeli’ Channel 11 correspondent Itay Blumental, a private executive jet, 9H-JPC, took off from the ‘Israeli’-occupied Palestinian territories and headed to Riyadh, making a diplomatic stop in Amman.

The ‘Israeli’ journalist said normalization is underway between Saudi Arabia and the ‘Israeli’ entity.

This is not the first time an ‘Israeli’ aircraft lands in Saudi Arabia, or ‘Israeli’ planes are allowed to pass in the kingdom’s airspace, especially amid the ongoing normalization between the two sides, though it hasn’t been officially announced yet.

Most recently, visits by Zionist figures to Saudi Arabia intensified, as it has been unveiled that many Saudi figures inside the kingdom are in contacts with ‘Israeli’ individuals.

In 2020, ‘Israeli’ media outlets confirmed that a bilateral meeting was held between former Zionist PM Benjamin Natanyahu and Saudi crown prince Mohammad Bin Salman.

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