Thursday, March 26, 2015

Second phase of this Yemeni war

The Saudi didn't know what they have started. The second phase of this war is likely to be a long-range missile war of cities.

Saudi airforce

Saudi air force is known for its accuracy of hits.  If it aims at Sanaa, it hits Taez. If it aims at Aden, it hits Riyadh.

Saudi regime and US media insists that the conflict in Yemen is sectarian: it is not

"That, of course, was not a wholly successful strategy. Over the past decade, there have been at least half a dozen military campaigns with the Houthis, a secessionist movement in the South, the relocation of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) from Saudi Arabia to Yemen, a popular uprising that lasted 11 months, a fracturing of the armed forces, an externally-brokered transitional agreement, a dramatic escalation in U.S. drone attacks in different parts of the country, and a National Dialogue Conference theoretically designed to put all the pieces back together. So, why think of this as sectarian war? The Houthi’s march on Sanaa in September cannot be easily glossed as “sectarian” just because they are Zaydi Shiites, and most (though not all) Islahis are Sunnis. The existence of nominal difference is not by itself a compelling causal story.

The fact that the Houthis are Zaydis does not mean that their movement is aimed exclusively or even primarily at establishing a Zaydi political order, reinstituting the kind of imamate that ruled Northern Yemen for hundreds of years (though some critics will tell you so). Similarly, the fact that Islah’s membership is predominantly Sunni doesn’t mean it is working to reestablish the caliphate, or even that it is willing to cooperate with those transnational movements that would, though its detractors may allege this. Instead, the conflict that pits the Houthis against Islah is one several decades in the making, and rests as much in the structure of the Yemeni North, the hierarchies of power and privilege among Zaydis themselves, and a state apparatus that sought to manipulate them."

Sudan and Egypt and the war on Yemen

It his hilarious that the Saudi regime bought off the Sudanese tyrant to ensure Sudanese participation in the Saudi-led war on Yemen. I am sure that his participation reinforced the democratic credentials of this war.  Egypt yesterday denied any intention of military participation in a war in Yemen. Today, it participated.  Dollars happened between yesterday and today.

If only the American public knows: Al-Qa`idah is an ally of the US in the Middle East

Whether in Syria or in Yemen, the US is an ally in the same trench with Al-Qa`idah.

The German plane

Will US media now call for racial profiling of German people? Will German-American now be scrutinized as they board planes or try to join flight schools? Will there be calls for the revision of the German school curricula? Will there be calls for the reform German Christianity? Will German churches in the US be called upon to denounce this German crime? Will this German co-pilot be declared a terrorist?

The War on Yemen: how to read it

It is fair to say that it will be more fun to watch the second generation of House of Saud as they find their way in regional and international politics.  King Faysal believed that the stability of the regime and its preservation requires resort to secrecy and caution in pursuing Saudi regime interests around the world. That is why the royal family perfected the art of dissimulation especially in Arab-Israeli issues (it supported Sadat behind the scene while funding the anti-Sadat coalition at some points).  This war is also an American war: it is a gift from the US to the GCC countries who didn't like US policies in Egypt, Syria, and Yemen.  The Saudi regime is now pursuing the Israeli option: that it will now be more clearly aligned with the Israeli interests in the region and that it will also be aggressive and violent in pursuing regime interests.  Qatar and UAE were the first to openly and officially participate in an open war in Libya, and Saudi royal family didn't enjoy watching the Qatari prime minister lead the Arab League from 2010 to 2012.  The Saudi regime took matters in its own hands and decided to pursue an alternative policies in Egypt.  On every issue in Arab politics, the Saudi regime is aligned with Israel. Make no mistake about it: Israel is the secret member of the GCC coalition bombing Yemen.  In the 1960s, the Saudi regime ignited the war of Yemen to thwart a progressive and republican alternative to the reactionary immate regime (and Israel supplied weapons to the Saudi side in that war).  In this war, the GCC countries are supporting a corrupt and reactionary puppet regime created by Saudi Arabia and the US.  Saudi Arabia never allowed Yemen to enjoy independence. It saw in itself the legitimate heir to the British imperial power in peninsula.  The Huthis (with whom I share absolutely nothing) are a bunch of reactionaries but who were created due to the very policies and war pursued by the Saudi regime in Yemen and their then puppet, `Ali `Abdullah Salih.   South Yemen had the only Marxist state in the Arab wold and the experiment was sabotaged by the reactionary House of Saud.  There is an entertainment value to this war as the Saudi regime actively and openly launches war on another Arab country.  Who does not want to see, yet again, the Huthis humiliating the Saudi army on the battle field (look up the last battle with the Huthis on Youtube when Saudi soldiers ran for their lives).  And who does not want to see a Saudi royal brat leading his army to yet another humiliation on the battle field.  In all the Yemeni war, the Saudi regime always sponsored the option that guaranteed more longevity for war and destruction. This is no exception. I have never thought that the demise of the Saudi regime would be expedited by the 2nd generation of Saudi princes.  I never thought that there could be a more corrupt and more incompetent prince than Khalid bin Sultan: but think again. Muhammad bin Sultan (seen above leading the battle from his office) is your man, o US and Israel.  Enjoy him.

Thomas Friedman thinks that the Taliban are Arab

""A second argument is that Iran is a real country and civilization, with competitive (if restricted) elections, educated women and a powerful military. Patching up the U.S.-Iran relationship could enable America to better manage and balance the Sunni Arab Taliban in Afghanistan"" (thanks David)

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

How China used more cement in 3 years than the U.S. did in the entire 20th Century


W. M. Watt: US Support for Israel "Root of this Trouble"

From Nikolai: "An interview from 1999/2000:

"I therefore certainly don’t think the West is locked into Jihad with Islam, though I suppose if the fundamentalists go too far they’ll have to be opposed. Iran’s comments about the “Great Satan” were aimed mostly at the United States: they were not made because the West was Christian. I think the West should try to overcome these strains between different religious groups. I do, however, think that the US is following a very dangerous policy in relation to the Middle East. The root of this trouble is that the US gives too much support to Israel. They allow them to have nuclear weapons and to do all sorts of things, some of which are contrary even to Jewish law. Jewish families occupy Arab houses without payment. That is stealing. I think that the US should be much firmer with Israel and put a lot of pressure on them, though this is difficult because of the strong Jewish lobby. Unless something is done there’ll be dangerous conflict in the Middle East. Such danger would be less likely to arise if all three Abrahamic faiths - Jews, Christians and Muslims - paid greater respect to what God teaches us about living together."

Thank you Ashraf Ghani

The man the US supported for president in Afghanistan has graciously asked the US to keep troops in Afghanistan forever.  I never thought that a puppet of occupation can be more loyal to the occupation than Hamid Karzai until I heard of this man, Ghani.

No need for alarm: this terrorist is not a Muslim

From H.: "
"Did you hear about the man who entered New Orleans’ airport with explosives and a machete? No? Well, you would have if he’d been Muslim.
A Muslim American man carrying a duffel bag that holds six homemade explosives, a machete, and poison spray travels to a major U.S. airport. The man enters the airport, approaches the TSA security checkpoint, and then sprays two TSA officers with the poison. He then grabs his machete and chases another TSA officer with it.
This Muslim man is then shot and killed by the police. After the incident, a search of the attacker’s car by the police reveals it contained acetylene and oxygen tanks, two substances that, when mixed together, will yield a powerful explosive.
If this scenario occurred, there’s zero doubt that this would be called a terrorist attack. Zero. It would make headlines across the country and world, and we would see wall-to-wall cable news coverage for days. And, of course, certain right-wing media outlets, many conservative politicians, and Bill Maher would use this event as another excuse to stoke the flames of hate toward Muslims.
Well, last Friday night, this exact event took place at the New Orleans airport—that is, except for one factual difference: The attacker was not Muslim. Consequently, you might be reading about this brazen assault for the first time here, although this incident did receive a smattering of media coverage over the weekend."

On Palestinians who travled

From Alfred: "I do know a person who calls himself a Palestinian whose grandfather came from Mardin, Turkey in 1915 when Syriac Christians were being slaughtered in Turkey.  During WWI thousands of Armenians and Assyrians fled from Turkey to Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Egypt, and the smallest number came to Palestine because you have the smallest number of Armenians and Assyrian Christians in Palestine . Also, I do know of a person from the Saade family from Amioun, Lebanon who went to live in Palestine in the early 20th century who stayed in Palestine and married a local. But, we do not hear of the many thousands of Palestinians who emigrated to countries like Chile and El Salvador, which today number over 900,000 people during the same period. I know of many Syrians and Lebanese in Lebanon, Syria, and around the world who came from Palestine "a few decades earlier" and if you would look at the immigration numbers you would find out that many more times more Palestinians traveled to lands outside Palestine than "those Arabs who had traveled to those lands only a few decades earlier"."

Even the Zionist Brookings is admitting the obvious: that Al-Qai`dah is a major force in the Syrian "insurgency"

"In fact, while rarely acknowledged explicitly in public, the vast majority of the Syrian insurgency has coordinated closely with Al-Qaeda since mid-2012"

Western-backed rebels indiscriminately target civilians, particularly in areas where minorities reside

"Syrian armed opposition groups, among them jihadists but also Western-backed rebels, have indiscriminately targeted civilians in violation of the laws of war, Human Rights Watch said on Monday." "The report said several dozen car bomb attacks in Damascus and Homs provinces had hit areas with no government military targets, and often targeted districts occupied by religious minorities." "Among the worst of the bombings was an attack in October last year outside a school in the Akrameh neighbourhood of central Homs city that killed more than 45 children."

the soldiers of Charlie Company raped women, burned houses, and turned their M-16s on the unarmed civilians of My Lai

"Nevertheless, the soldiers of Charlie Company raped women, burned houses, and turned their M-16s on the unarmed civilians of My Lai." "The truth remains elusive, but one G.I. described to me a moment that most of his fellow-soldiers, I later learned, remembered vividly. At Calley’s order, Meadlo and others had fired round after round into the ditch and tossed in a few grenades. Then came a high-pitched whining, which grew louder as a two- or three-year-old boy, covered with mud and blood, crawled his way among the bodies and scrambled toward the rice paddy. His mother had likely protected him with her body. Calley saw what was happening and, according to the witnesses, ran after the child, dragged him back to the ditch, threw him in, and shot him."

Saudi Arabia's growing influence in American politics

"As I pointed out in a post last year about Saudi Arabia’s growing influence in American politics, the Saudi government also funds the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation, the Middle East Policy Council, the Middle East Institute and the Smithsonian Freer Museum of Art."

2,300 Turks have joined ISIS

"According to Hurriyet, over 2,300 Turks are believed to have joined the ranks of ISIS militants who have taken swathes of Iraq and Syria up to the Turkish border." (thanks Amir)

From "moderate" to "mainstream": what is the difference, alas?

"An alliance of mainstream rebels who are backed by President Bashar al-Assad's Arab and Western foes said they had taken Bosra and declared the start of a new attack against government forces in another area of Deraa province to the northwest. The spokesman for the Southern Front alliance said 85 percent of the fighters who took part in the attack were from mainstream rebel groups, with the rest from Islamist factions." (thanks Basim)

Ben Hubbard praised in the media of Saudi princes for his admiration of the Saudi injustice system in the New York Times

The mouthpiece of Prince Khalid Bin Sultan, Al-Hayat, devotes a whole article to praise the propaganda piece by Ben Hubbard in the New York Times in which he praised the Saudi injustice system.  I expect Hubbard to be writing soon about the "desert democracy" of Saudi Arabia, along the lines for another former American correspondent, David Lamb, in his book, The Arabs. (thanks Mariam)

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

The true colors of Bruce Hoffman: expert on terrorism

It is very much like W.M. Watt in his (last?) book, Islamic Fundamentalism and Modernity. He let it all out and expressed real hostility to Muslim discarding the earlier niceties of his career.  Hoffman, who used to think of as the least insane and least ignorant among the terrorism experts, has just published a new book "Anonymous Soldiers" about terrorism and the origins of the Arab-Israeli conflict.  I am reading the book and he is quite unabashed in his endorsement of Zionist terrorism.

"Israel protests Hungary's Eurovision entry"

From Balázs in Hungry: "Now this is really the non plus ultra!

"Israel is protesting Hungary's Eurovision entry, which includes criticism against Operation Protective Edge and mentions the number of Palestinian children killed during the 2014 Israeli military campaign.”

“One of the captions in the song's video refers to Operation Protective Edge, stating: '2014 – Gaza – two-thirds of the victims were civilians, including more than 500 children.’ "

A senior official in the Hungarian broadcasting authority stressed in a conversation with Mor [ambassador to Hungary] that the Eurovision rules ban political messages during the competition, and promised that the sentence about Operation Protective Edge would be erased.”

Now if this “senior (most idiotic) official” is right, this will be shame on us Hungarians."

OK to teach islam, but only under surveillance

"Adil Charkaoui pourra reprendre ses cours au Collège de Maisonneuve, a-t-il annoncé mercredi soir sur sa page Facebook. La direction réclamait le droit d'avoir un observateur dans la salle de classe pour s'assurer que le code de vie du collège est respecté, condition à laquelle Adil Charkaoui devait répondre d'ici vendredi." (thanks Jerome)

Israel using bogus archeological digs as cover to take Palestinian land

"Isareli settlers are colonising Palestinian territory under the guise of moving in to areas to protect historic archaeological sites, the British government has said." "Elad has previously paid the Israel Antiquities Authority to dig deep trenches near the foundations Palestinian homes and mosques in East Jerusalem. Palestinian residents of the area blamed the excavations for the collapse of a number of their buildings, according to Israeli newspaper Haaretz."

Apartheid regime cannot be called "democratic"

"But among Israelis themselves, there is increasing angst over the fact that their country of 8 million people also controls some 2.5 million West Bank Palestinians who have no voting rights for its parliament. If the 2 million Palestinians of Gaza — a territory dominated indirectly by Israel — were added to the equation, then together with the 2 million Arab citizens of "Israel proper" the Holy Land would be home to a population of some 12 million, equally divided between Arabs and Jews. Of the Arabs, only a third have voting rights."

Palestinian family had to live with unexploded Israeli bomb in their home

"The unexploded bomb, 10ft long, weighing more than a ton, and delivered by an Israeli warplane, had been the talk of Gaza’s Beit Hanoun neighbourhood. The family was one of 40 households in Gaza sharing their residence with explosive devices because they had nowhere else to live."

Bill Maher's racism

""Maher praised Israel for allowing Arabs to vote at all, saying that America might strip blacks of the vote if “12 or 13 completely black nations” had attacked us. This seems to endorse the idea that America is a white nation and blacks are merely second-class citizens:" "The logic that Maher is applying to Israel more or less concedes that he believes it's a state where Arab citizens are second-class, a belief that it is increasingly obvious Israel's leadership and electorate endorse."" (thanks Amir)

US Congress and Israeli racism

From Roger: "Does anyone know the answer to this question?
Has any member of US Congress spoken against the racist rhetoric of Netanyahu? I could not find any example."

If the media barely touched that speech that spouted trash and racism against Persian ("you can't trust a Persian at a bazar table" he said), how can you any expect congressmen/women to speak against it?"

It is only out of modesty that a man spoke on behalf of a woman

Houssam sent me this: "Today page A19
Article: '7 Innocent Lambs' Mourned in Jerusalem

Just wonder if a Muslim cleric spike for females, would that be considered out of modesty?"
"Out of modesty, a value strictly observed among the Orthodox community to which the Sassoon family belongs, a male rabbi spoke on behalf of the female principal of the school".  Can you imagine an American paper writing: out of modesty, Saudi government does not allow women to drive?

Just as Zionist hoodlums distorted the words of Shuqayri, Arafat, Nasser and others, it has distorted words of Iranian leaders

"Khamenei speaks often about the destruction of Israel. But he rejects doing so by means of a war. “We recommend neither a classical war by the army of Muslim countries nor to throw migrated Jews at sea.” (It’s good to know that he is against drowning Jews en masse!) Akbar Ganji, Iran’s best-known dissident, who was jailed for criticizing Khamenei, argues that the supreme leader has been consistent in this position for years — no war, certainly not by Iran.

What does Khamenei advocate? A “public and organized referendum” in which Muslims, Christians and Jews living in the area under Israeli jurisdiction would decide on the fate of their government and regime. "

It is official: US does not mind if Israel spies on the US provided it does not share its findings

"The fact of the espionage, an American official said on Tuesday, was less upsetting than how it was used."

How the New York Times spins stories that can be potentially damaging to Israel

So if Israel commits a massacre, the New York Times would publish a story about how "Israel denies committing a massacre".  And similarly, if Israel spies on the US, the New York Times publishes this story: "Israel Denies Spying on Iran Nuclear Talks"

Can someone explain French secularism to me? How does it work? Does it only work firmly against Islam and Muslims?

"La France a accordé 1 500 visas d'asile à des chrétiens d'Orient depuis l'été 2014"

Zionist cyberterrorism

The mother/father of all cyber-terrorists is holding a conference.

Saudi Minister of Defense launched the battle to liberate Palestine


J Street versus Netanyahu

J Street basically believes that Israeli racism should be less blatant. J Street basically believes that the murder of Palestinian children should proceed at a slower pace.

Does anyone know the answer to this question?

Has any member of US Congress spoken against the racist rhetoric of Netanyahu? I could not find any example.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Few have faced consequences for abuses at Abu Ghraib prison

"For plaintiffs and some critics of the government's response, the suit and its labyrinthine path are a reminder that few have faced significant consequences for the documented abuse that Americans carried out after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein."

Caesar's pictures about Syria and Abu Ghraib

Let me explain the US government positions on pictures: the US government is fully in support releasing the gruesome pictures of the Caesar's collection that allegedly show the images of victims of the Syrian regime but is categorically and firmly opposed to releasing pictures of Abu Ghraib.  As for the US media? Pretty much in support of the US position.

Can you imagine the uproar if someone were to vomit such hate against Judaism and world Jews? Would that person be accorded respectability by the media?

Embedded image permalink If someone were to vomit such hate against Judaism, would the New York Times have a chat with that person about the latest book that they have read? (thanks Glenn)

New book claims that U.S. soldiers raped up to 190,000 women

"Gebhardt believes that members of the US military raped as many as 190,000 German women by the time West Germany regained sovereignty in 1955, with most of the assaults taking place in the months immediately following the US invasion of Nazi Germany."

NSA: serving humanity

"The document suggests CSE has access to a series of sophisticated malware tools developed by the NSA as part of a program known as QUANTUM. As The Intercept has previously reported, the QUANTUM malware can be used for a range of purposes – such as to infect a computer and copy data stored on its hard drive, to block targets from accessing certain websites, or to disrupt their file downloads. Some of the QUANTUM techniques rely on redirecting a targeted person’s internet browser to a malicious version of a popular website, such as Facebook, that then covertly infects their computer with the malware."

Canadian cyber-spy capabilities that go beyond hacking for intelligence

"But the latest top-secret documents released to CBC News and The Intercept illustrate the development of a large stockpile of Canadian cyber-spy capabilities that go beyond hacking for intelligence, including:

destroying infrastructure, which could include electricity, transportation or banking systems;

creating unrest by using false-flags — ie. making a target think another country conducted the operation;

disrupting online traffic by such techniques as deleting emails, freezing internet connections, blocking websites and redirecting wire money transfers." (thanks Amir)

mawkish sentimental humanitarianism

The fake sentimental humanitarianism that many Western correspondents feign about the Syrian people is quite distasteful, if you ask me.  I am looking for the expression of humanitarianism that does not serve US imperial agenda.  I also like how when it comes to the suffering of the Palestinian people, Western correspondents hide behind the alibi of the need to be objective in reporting, while that alibi is not needed about Syria.  Spare me.

Saudi propaganda in the New York Times: the injustice system

This is nothing short of a piece of propaganda that you read in the Saudi-funded Arabic press.  This is what is hilarious: when the Saudi regime beheads and cuts off limbs, Islamic law is blamed. But when the regime commutes sentences, the Saudi regime is credited. Yes, not all sentences are carried out because there are IN ISLAMIC LAW flexibilities and "tricks" that allow for the judge to exercise leniency, and also because financial compensation have been an accepted remedy in ancient Arabic culture.  Big deal. That doesn't make the Saudi injsustice system less unjust.