Sunday, August 20, 2006
Just a brief message to let you all know what's been going on. I'm not Dan, I'm his friend. Updating the blog on his behalf. He has occasional access to my laptop and the internet but he doesn't feel inclined to blog atm. He's at a hospital in the south, and is recovering from the moderate injuries he sustained in the fighting there. Must also add that he now has an amazing wife, A., and their first baby is on the way. :) He had been living in Srifa for some time, and he and his wife were planning on buying a plot and building a house. That will have to wait, but thank goodness the storm has been weathered. I will leave the rest to him, hopefully soon he will give in to my nagging and accept to post though I understand he wants to focus on his health & family for the time being. :)
You may direct your inquiries to me at written_on_the_wall at hotmail dot com.
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Friday, February 10, 2006
Am I disillusioned??
Forgive me for this personal post, this blog is not meant to be a personal one. But I just felt like ranting.
Tuesday, February 07, 2006
Blogging the Middle East
As for me, I'm sorry, I keep saying I will update the blog but I get lazy. I think it's in the air or something. Or maybe it's the water. I don't know. Maybe being stoned is a prerequisite for blogging the Middle East.
Monday, February 06, 2006
Sunday, February 05, 2006
In support of freedom of speech
The following explanation was made available on the Arab European League website:
After the lectures that Arabs and Muslims received from Europeans on Freedom of Speech and on Tolerance. And after that many European newspapers republished the Danish cartoons on the Prophet Mohammed. AEL decided to enter the cartoon business and to use our right to artistic expression.
Just like the newspapers in Europe claim that they only want to defend the freedom of speech and do not desire to stigmatise Muslims, we also do stress that our cartoons are not meant as an offence to anybody and ought not to be taken as a statement against any group, community or historical fact.
If it is the time to break Taboos and cross all the red lines, we certainly do not want to stay behind.
Saturday, February 04, 2006
The Palestinian elections are interesting to say the least. I was actually hoping for a Hamas win, because the Palestinians deserve accountability after years of corruption that they have suffered from. And it seems that they made the right choice, at least when it comes to internal politics. As for external politics (and relations with Israel), people have been marketing the Hamas win as a tragic ending, but allow me to ask, what has Fatah done so far?? What has Mahmoud Abbas done so far?? Except for maintaining the status quo, that is, under the guise of "sitting at the negotiations table"? Moreover, why is a Likud win hailed as democratic elections while a Hamas one is not, having in mind that Likud has had a history of racism, hatred, and mass murder (note: not that Labour does not have such a history as well!)? I forget, Israelis are supposed to be democracy-loving while those backwards Arabs and Muslims only understand the language of violence... And I will not even attempt to demolish the American position because it's not worth my time, really. Maybe when the U.S adopts a position more worthwhile to be talked about I will consider discussing it.
Moving on, I have been following Israeli reports of the Qassam attack that hit a caravan in a kibbutz, supposedly causing critical injuries to a 7-month-old baby boy. Well, after reading that report (on all three major Israeli news websites, Ha'aretz, JPost, and Yediot Achronot) I got curious so I ran a search on Yahoo News Photos, and here's what I found. Here's the picture of the baby in a "critical" condition:
I suppose the Israeli definition of "critical injuries" excludes life-threatening condition, blood, and loss of consciousness, and includes crying and absence of visible injuries... JPost was kind enough to publish my criticism of the wording in the talkbacks; unsurprisingly, there were calls for censorship, because apparently any criticism of false reporting (in favour of the poor, oppressed, persecuted Israelis) is ... anti-Semitic. There was also someone who actually wondered what difference terminology (critical /moderate / light) made... You can experience the glory of idiocy first-hand by clicking here. And where's MEMRI when you need it??
Update: I just got banned from the Harirists' forum for being "unsecular". I kid you not. That was the message I received from the administrator before I got banned. Perhaps Mr. Administrator would like to check out the LF-ers on the forum who are defending the crusaders. Not to mention that more than half of the people at the "demonstration" today were Harirists... Mr. Administrator might also like to check out how hypocritical he is when he seems to be justifying the cartoons by pointing to "freedom of speech". I call on people to respect and practice freedom of speech! But shhh, don't tell anyone, I neither believe in it nor practice it.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Reshuffling in the Middle East: destroying the Tehran-Baghdad-Damascus-Beirut railway
Gibran Tueni is dead (Allah Yer7amo). I was never a fan of the guy, and I don’t see what the big deal is about his guts. When he received information from the American and French intelligence services present IN LEBANON about threat to his life, he fled to Paris, and then he was told by the same intelligence services to return. Could it be that Mr. Tueni was merely a tool in the hands of the intelligence services of the Americans and French? After all, if the Syrians had wanted to kill him, they had quite a lot of time to do so, when the spotlight was not on them as it is now. Moreover, if the Syrians were so deep in the hole that they are to be held responsible for his assassination, could they not have massacred his family to hurt him? And then of course we have people accusing HezbAllah & Amal of staging fake attacks (the one on Sheikh Yazbek) to get sympathy and cover up on the assassination that was to take place. These people forget to mention that using this logic, we can argue that Walid Jumblatt was the one who placed the 4 rockets (3 American, 1 Russian) on the main Chouf road, with the same purpose in mind. HezbAllah & Amal of course condemned the assassination of Tueni, but it seems to me that no matter what they say or do, they will always be accused. It appears that the Sunni za’imship is determined to isolate the Shi’ites of Lebanon and topple the Alawite regime in Syria, and replace it with a Sunni regime, to make up for the loss of Sunni hegemony in Iraq. It is highly possible that the assassination of Hariri was planned and executed by the Americans so as to bring about these changes, with the hope of dealing with the Sunni insurgency in Iraq. Could it be that Tueni’s timely murder was an American reminder to the international community that there should be sanctions against Syria? In fact the Sheikh Yazbek assassination attempt and today’s explosion in Nabatiye could be interpreted as an American message to HezbAllah and Amal that the changes planned will take place no matter what, and the best they can do is remain quiet. This of course was met by HezbAllah & Amal ministers by a refusal to be subdued, as seen in their withdrawal from the Cabinet meeting yesterday. I think it would be foolish to dismiss the quagmire in Iraq as a possible source of change in Lebanon. It’s also interesting to see how Basshar al Assad will react to the expected changes in the region. I think that if the situation goes on long enough there is a big chance that his regime will survive, because the Americans can’t stay in Iraq forever and Iran (maybe) has the ability to go nuclear, which would draw a Shi’ite line all the way from Tehran to Beirut (which would be interesting, because it can also lead to the desire to continue the line all the way to Shi'ite Baku, passing through Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh). Saddam was getting a bit out of control, so America replaces him with a regime shared between long-oppressed Shi’ites and Kurds, and in return topple the Assad regime of Syria and give the Sunnis there and in Lebanon something to be happy about. The complete disregard of the Sunnis on the political scene in post-Saddam Iraq is the equivalent of the planned disregard of the Shi’ites and Alawites in post-Assad Syria and the Shi’ites in post-Feb.14 Lebanon. But keep in mind that Lebanon is a unique case since the Shi’ites there are the biggest sect, whereas the Shi’ites in Syria and the Sunnis in Iraq are not. Of course, any such lines, whether Shi'ite or Sunni is perceived as a threat by both USA and "Israel", which is why we can see the two opt for reshuffling the cards and dealing a different hand to soothe the growing resentment towards the West that the current oppressive system has given rise to.
Friday, October 21, 2005
Words and their meanings
In other news, "Israeli officials call for changes in Syrian rule" (here some explanation from those who insisted that "Israel" had nothing to gain from toppling Assad's regime would prove helpful).
I will post most of the article, for fear that our beloved left-wing (sic) Ha'aretz might change the wording (call me a conspiracy theorist but I will still not take any chances, this is not an article to be missed). My comments are in red. Read on, fellow sheep (at least USA and "Israel" assume that that's what ALL of us without exceptions are):
Israeli politicians from the left and right on Friday called for changes in the Syrian leadership, after a United Nations probe concluded that the plot to assassinate former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri must have had the approval of Syrian security officials, backed by the collusion of their Lebanese counterparts. If you fail to notice the newly-found love from the innocent, dovish Israelis towards the Lebanese, then you are, beyond any doubt, an anti-Semite, as the ADL and Simon Wiesenthal Centre would rush to conclude.The rest of the article is full of unsignificant regurgitations, so I will not post it for reasons of time and space.
"I think there needs to be change in Syria," said Vice Premier Shimon Peres, adding that the United States and France should take the lead in deciding on an international response to the findings. Guess what, Israelis love the Syrian people too, and don't want to see the people suffer under Assad's regime!
Referring to Syrian President Bashar Assad and his relatives in positions of power, Peres told Israel Radio: "If it is true that the government is involved in the murder, this will shake up the rule of the Assads." He added that it is "not natural or acceptable" for a family representing a small minority to rule Syria in what he said was a brutal fashion. On the other hand, of course, it's OK for the representatives of "a majority to rule [the Occupied Territories]" (including pre-1948 Palestine) in a "brutal fashion".
The UN report stopped short of pointing a finger at Assad or his inner circle [so there "needs to be regime change in Syria"], but accused Syria of failing to cooperate [yeah, I guess that's a crime far worse than "Israeli" human shield practice, to name on example...] and said the plot to kill Hariri in a car bomb must have had [why exactly??! Because Syrian intelligence services are beyond a doubt more sophisticated and better functioning than CIA and Mossad...] the blessing of Syrian security officials. The report includes a single reference to Assef Shawkat, Assad's brother-in-law and the Syrian intelligence chief.
According to one witness, Shawkat forced a man to tape a claim of responsibility for Hariri's killing 15 days before it occurred. And of course, we can't find out who this "one witness" might be.. The precaution goes under "protecting" the individual (from the alleged Syrian ghosts roaming the country). Let's just say that there is "one witness" and according to him Assad's brother-in-law forced a video-taping... Does anyone notice that this sounds just as cheesy as the "Jund el Sham" videotape...
Likud MK Yuval Steinitz, chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, called for regime change in Damascus.
"As far as I am concerned... and here I have a dispute with some of the people in the security establishment, it is not just an American interest but a clear Israeli interest to end the Assad dynasty and replace Bashar Assad," he said. And of course, that interest excludes USA and "Israel" from the list of suspects, because logically speaking, the Hariri assassination worked against the idea of ending the Assad dynasty...
Ephraim Halevy, former chief of the Mossad espionage agency, said it was not necessary to prove a direct involvement by Assad. But it's anti-Semitic to argue that "Israel" is responsible for Hobeika's [or some other figure's] assassination without any proof. When it's about "Israel" there ought to be proof, otherwise it's anti-Semitic. The Syrians must now be wishing that they were Jews...
"The head of the Syrian pyramid is Bashar Assad," Halevy told Army Radio. "I don't think... there is any doubt that this was an extensive and coordinated operation that was planned for many months. Lots of people from the Syrian elite were involved." Halevy seems to know more than that "one witness" knows. Maybe he would like to volunteer some information. Or could it be that he has the Jews-know-it-all-and-are-always-right-and-if-you-disagree-then-you're-an-anti-Semite complex?
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
The True Nature of Anti-Americanism in the Muslim World
By Ghanim Khalil
Very recently, President Bush sent Karen Hughes to tour Muslim nations in the Middle East for a bid to combat anti-Americanism 1. That she has failed miserably is no surprise to anyone with a mild knowledge of her two predecessors under the same administration who also failed (Charlotte Beers and Margaret Tutwiler). We hear the term Anti-American all the time when the issue is the Middle East and the wider Islamic/Muslim world. But what does the term really entail? The assumptions of this term include an ideological hatred of the United States of America. Those who remind us that this irrational ideology is growing to alarming rates often express the sentiment “were damned if we do and damned if we don’t”. But this tells us very little about today’s nature of anti-Americanism in the Muslim world, other than that “they” hate “us” and “we” must deal with “them”.
The relationship between the Muslim world and the US is a one way highway where power injects from West to East, North to South and no matter how much the East and South complains of the most evident forms of exploitation visible today (military/political/economic) they will be perceived as nothing more that mobs of monolithic ingratitude towards the superior “developed” nations who want only to fix their problems and enlighten their minds. Fixing and enlightening the Muslim world is the main goal, we are told, of the US quest in the Middle East where combating anti-Americanism is only one element. It comes as a shock to many Americans that such noble aspirations of the most powerful nation in the world is everyday being rejected by “them” when it seems “they” need it more than anyone else. Worse than their ingratitude is their irrational abhorrence to America and what she stands for.
Certainly, the shock itself is also displayed on the one way highway alongside power, from West to East, North to South and no matter how many Eastern and Southern scholars, intellectuals, human rights advocates, politicians and religious leaders point out that it’s not Western (read American) ways of life that causes them to rise up in opposition but Western (read American) foreign policy towards them, they will still be called “irrationally” anti-American. The foundations of the American myth being that not only are “they” inferior to “us” but “they” are also ungrateful and irrational towards “us” and this is how “we” can explain “their” hatred for “us”. This is the cultural thesis we hear about all over the media, pulpits, and political offices of the US.
What is overlooked, and with important reasoning, is that the “underdeveloped” status projected on “them” by Westerners has its roots in Western colonialism and imperialism, realities of the “ancient history” as Carter called it that many Americans could care less about. The important reasoning mentioned above, from the point of view of those in power here, is that it does no good for them to talk of the “root causes” of anti-Americanism in the Muslim world from a historical point of view. Instead they concentrate on it from a cultural point of view and posit “root causes” which ignore Western exploitation (military/political/economic) and emphasize racial/cultural Eurocentric mythologies from the 19th century. “They” hate “us” because of “our” values. “They” hate “us” because “they” hate our freedom.
After the military failure of unifying Iraq and the diplomatic failure of Karen Hughes, President Bush had no choice but to declare that “we” are fighting an anti-American enemy he calls a soon to be “Islamic Empire” lead by Muslim extremists.2 This myth, workable only on the gullible and ignorant, is the new form of self-aggrandizement necessary to protect the cultural myths for the purposes of American exploitation (military/political/economic). The absurdity of such a myth being adopted sincerely by many Americans despite the fact that it is truly irrational is astounding. That the Muslim world, itself plagued by extremist violence and hopelessly divided politically, economically, militarily, and religiously, is somehow supposed to constitute a potential (but in Bush’s mind certain) empire of terror, is revealing in the scope of its imagination and dangerous in its scope of hatred for the Muslim “Other”. Many Americans will incorporate this imaginary demon into their fearful worldview and swallow the xenophobic attitudes and assumptions it carries, all while portraying Muslims as nothing less than seeds of the irrational forces of evil.
Many of the politicians, religious ideologues, alarmist media personalities, and military-intelligence analysts in the US who speak of the growing anti-Americanism in the World (the most psychologically crucial being the Muslim world) speak with already embedded assumptions relating directly to the humanity of the “Others”, and in this case, the Islamic “Other”. The truth about the nature of anti-Americanism really depends on which angle you chose to look at the issue (historical or cultural). However, the fact is that many people in America use the label to repel healthy criticism of American foreign policy in the world. The dilemma arises when we find out that Muslims also eat McDonalds and drink Coke, are increasingly mimicking Western/American styles of fashion, are more versed in Western thought than Westerners are in Islamic thought (they know the West from their own works), absolutely love American television game shows and sitcoms, and recognize the West (and America specifically) as hubs of economic opportunity. Despite the many myths Muslims also have about the West and America, it becomes clear that Muslims cannot be generalized and placed into a category (anti-Americanism) without being engaged and heard. When they are engaged and heard, as Hughes’ recent experience can testify, they will all say the same things, “we don’t hate America, we hate American foreign policy.” Not surprisingly, they are not alone in expressing this obvious point about American-Muslim relations. This is what the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, a group formed by ex-U.S. intelligence officials, wrote to President Bush on February 8, 2003:
It is widely known that you have a uniquely
close relationship with Israeli Prime Minister
Ariel Sharon. This presents a strong disincentive
to those who might otherwise warn you that
Israel's continuing encroachment on Arab territories,
its oppression of the Palestinian people, and its
pre-emptive attack on Iraq in 1981 are among the
root causes not only of terrorism, but of
Saddam Hussein's felt need to develop the means
to deter further Israeli attacks.3
Along similar lines another group of former diplomats and high ranking retired officers (DMCC – Diplomats and Military Commanders for Change) released a statement in June of 2004 stating: “The United States suffers from close identification with autocratic regimes in the Muslim world, and from the perception of unquestioning support for the policies and actions of the present Israeli Government. To enhance credibility with Islamic peoples we must pursue courageous, energetic and balanced efforts to establish peace between Israelis and Palestinians, and policies that encourage responsible democratic reforms.”4 A most interesting argument against the cultural “they hate our freedoms” thesis is the following two statements of the Defense Science Board from within the Pentagon itself. In a 1997 DSB study experts found that “Historical data show a strong correlation between U.S. involvement in international situations and an increase in terrorist attacks against the United States.”5 Three years after 9-11 another report by the DSB stated: “Muslims do not hate our freedom, but rather they hate our policies… The overwhelming majority voice their objections to what they see as one-sided support in favor of Israel and against Palestinian rights, and the long-standing, even increasing, support for what Muslims collectively see as tyrannies, most notably Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Pakistan and the Gulf states… Thus, when American public diplomacy talks about bringing democracy to Islamic societies, this is seen as no more than self-serving hypocrisy.”6 This is far closer to the truth than what many Americans believe.
The true nature of anti-Americanism can only be historically explained. The cultural arguments are nothing more than veils meant to keep Americans from thinking for themselves and thus promoting the American empire out of ignorance and fear. Therefore, the real problem is what is expressed in a very important book written by Ziauddin Sardar and Merryl Wyn Davies titled, Why Do People Hate America? The authors write that,
It was one of our central arguments that at
the heart of relations between America and the
rest of the world stands a problem of knowledge.
In precise terms, we call it the problem of
‘knowledgeable ignorance’: knowing people, ideas,
civilisations, religions, histories as something
they are not, and could not possibly be, and maintaining
these ideas even when the means exist to know differently.
Knowledgeable ignorance is a term applied to the Western
view of Islam and Muslims in particular.
It refers to more than general negative attitudes
and ideas; it defines the way in which such
attitudes are built into an approach to knowledge,
a body of study and expertise called Orientalism.7
Knowledge about the Islamic “Other” is crucial in reversing the tide of cultural superiority expressed in moral terms and political threats. Only after you know a people can you truly face them and speak your piece. Otherwise you are speaking your piece to an imaginary “them” created in your mind. One requires a single example to put things in a better perspective. If America had undergone Muslim colonialism and imperialism and then experienced national freedom only to realize that they are free only up to a certain degree, that neo-imperialism of a Muslim empire now overshadows them, watching their every move and placing upon itself the “right” to intervene in any changes that take place which it doesn’t approve of, would Americans stand for this balance of power? What if they then opposed the Muslim empire in various ways (peaceful and not) and were labeled all sorts of things from ungrateful to irrational, would Americans accept this logic? What if extremist groups from amongst an exploited America then started to terrorize Muslim countries and peoples all over the world, would Americans who are neither extremist nor approving of the Muslim empire then capitulate to the argument of a Muslim leader who announces that you’re “either with us or against us”? If the tables were turned, no American would stand for what Muslims have undergone for the past few centuries under Western dominance. No manner of the Muslim empire’s cultural explanations of why Americans oppose them would be acceptable. Americans would do what many Muslims are doing today and that is exposing the historical roots of the problems between Muslims and America. Enter the true nature of anti-Americanism.
Other Sources besides the footnotes:
Anti-Americanism according to Wikipedia.org (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-Americanism); Norman Daniel’s Islam and the West (Oxford: One World, 1993); Edward Said’s Covering Islam: How the Media and Experts Determine How We See the Rest of the World, (Vintage Books, US, 1997); William Blum’s Killing Hope (Common Courage Press, U.S., 1995); Andrea Lueg’s The Next Threat: Western Perceptions of Islam (Pluto Press, U.K., 1995); Rene Guenon’s The Crisis of the Modern World (Suhail Academy, Pakistan, 1999); Ziauddin Sardar’s Postmodernism and the Other, (Pluto Press, London, 1998); John Esposito’s The Islamic Threat: Myth or Reality? (Oxford, 1995); Bruce Lawrence’s Shattering the Myth: Islam Beyond Violence (Princeton, 1998); Ahmed S. Moussalli’s Islamic Fundamentalism: Myths and Realities (Ithaca Press,1990); Joseph E. B. Lumbard, The Decline of Knowledge and the Rise of Ideology, in his edited: Islam, Fundamentalism, and the Betrayal of Tradition, (World Wisdom Inc., U.S., 2004); Noam Chomsky’s Deterring Democracy, (Hill and Wang, New York, 1992).
Joseph G. Rahme, Ethnocentric and Stereotypical Concepts in the Study of Islamic and World History, The History Teacher, Vol. 32, No. 4 (August 1999): 473-474; Robert Jervis, Understanding the Bush Doctrine, Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 118, No. 3, Fall 2003; Scott McConnell, Among the Neocons, The American Conservative, April 21, 2003. (www.amconmag.com/04_21_03/cover.html); Robert D. Crane, The Muslim Challenge in America and the World, Islamic Inst. for Strategic Studies, U.S., 2000; Norman Podhoretz, In Praise of the Bush Doctrine, Commentary, September 4, 2002.
1Dan Murphy, US begins new pitch to Muslim World, Christian Science Monitor, September 28, 2005
2Tom Raum, Bush Warns Militants Seek to Establish Empire, AP, October 6, 2005
3Memo for President Bush, Feb 8, 2003,
4Diplomats and Military Commanders for Change, Statement, June 16, 2004
5‘Response to Transnational Threats’, Defense Science Board, DoD, 1997
6‘Report of the Defense Science Board Task Force on Strategic Communication’, Defense Science Board, DoD, 2004 or see:
7Ziauddin Sardar and Merryl Wyn Davies, Why Do People Hate America?, Disinformation Company Ltd., New York, 2002, p. 11- 12. The phrase ‘knowledgeable ignorance’ was taken from Norman Daniel’s Islam and the West (Oxford: One World, 1993).
Ghanim Khalil is an author, activist, former U.S. Marine and National Guardsman, and is a current student majoring in History
Sunday, October 09, 2005
Source: The National Security Strategy of the United States of America, Sept. 2002.
Sunday, September 25, 2005
Jerusalem Post and Ha'aretz immediately (both at 6:03 pm ) reported on the explosion, even before Al Jazeera (I wonder how that works... Do the two "Israeli" newspapers have reporters or offices in Lebanon? Or perhaps they publish information provided to them by "unnamed sources"?)
Even more disturbing is how these people (add BBC to the list) used this sick assassination attempt to advance their anti-Syrian propaganda.
Jerusalem Post puts it this way:
"A prominent journalist working for an anti-Syrian television station was seriously wounded Sunday when a bomb placed under her car exploded, Lebanese security officials said."
"The explosion recalls a similar one on June 2, when anti-Syrian journalist Samir Kassir was killed by a bomb placed under the seat of his car."
(How about the explosion reminding us of similar bombs planted by "Israeli" pure-of-arms "defense" forces in Beirut, or ones planted by "Israel's" proxy militias with the explosives provided by none other than the pure-of-arms "Israelis"?)
And lest we forget, Jerusalem Post concludes this "journalistic" report with the following reminder:
"LBC, a Christian TV station, is among the most prominent of anti-Syrian media outlets."
I see, I see. We have the verdict before trying the suspect. Must be fun. Reminds me of the first rain (sic) in Gaza... And lest we forget, calibrating weapons by firing them on Gaza is, indeed, one of the "usual practice[s] of refraining from harming civilians." Orwell is turning in his grave.
The prime minister said that israel had embarked on "an ongoing operation, whose aim is to hit terrorists, and not to relent from this. All means are fit for this. Apart from our usual practice of refraining from harming civilians, all means should be used to halt this phenomenon."
Yup (no more comments from me).
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Occupying Forces Planting Bombs and Blaming it on the Sunni Resistance
Fake Terrorism Is a Coalition's Best Friend
Iraqi police recently caught two terrorists with a car full of explosives. Would it surprise you to learn they were British Special Forces?
By Matt Hutaff Sep 20, 2005
The story sounds amazing, almost fantastical.
A car driving through the outskirts of a besieged city opens fire on a police checkpoint, killing one. In pursuit, the police surround and detain the drivers and find the vehicle packed with explosives – perhaps part of an insurgent's plan to destroy lives and cripple property. If that isn't enough, when the suspects are thrown in prison their allies drive right up to the walls of the jail, break through them and brave petroleum bombs and burning clothes to rescue their comrades. 150 other prisoners break free in the ensuing melee.
Incredible, no? Yet this story took place in the southern Iraqi city of Basra recently. Violence continues to escalate in the breakout's aftermath... just not for the reasons you think.
You see, the drivers of the explosive-laden car were not members of an insurgency group – they were British Special Forces. Their rescuers? British soldiers driving British tanks.
That's right – two members of the British Armed forces disguised as Arab civilians killed a member of the Iraqi police while evading capture. When the people of Basra rightfully refused to turn the murderers over to the British government, per Coalition "mandate," they sent their own men in and released over 100 prisoners in the process.
Winning the hearts and minds, aren't we?
Sadly, this story is really not all that surprising. After hearing countless accounts of using napalm and torture against innocent civilians in addition to the other daily abuses dished out by American overseers, the thought of British scheming seems perfectly reasonable.
So what we have here is a clear instance of a foreign power attempting to fabricate a terrorist attack. Why else would the soldiers be dressed as Arabs if not to frame them? Why have a car laden with explosives if you don't plan to use them for destructive purposes? Iraq is headed towards civil war, and this operation was meant to accelerate the process by killing people and blaming others. Nothing more, nothing less. That the British army staged an over-the-top escape when it could rely on normal diplomatic channels to recover its people proves that.
Such extreme methods highlight the need to keep secrets.
There have been a number of insurgent bombings in Iraq recently. Who really is responsible for the bloodshed and destruction? The only tangible benefit of the bombings is justification for Coalition forces maintaining the peace in Iraq. Who benefits from that? Certainly not the Iraqis – they already believe most suicide bombings are done by the United States to prompt religious war. After reading about this incident, I'm not inclined to disagree.
Thursday, September 15, 2005
Why is it that we and America wish civil war on Iraq?
Thursday, 15th September 2005, by Robert Fisk
There will not be a civil war in Iraq. There never has been a civil war in Iraq. In 1920, Lloyd George warned of civil war in Iraq if the British Army left. Just as the Americans now threaten the Iraqis with civil war if they leave. As early as 2003, American spokesmen warned that there would be civil war if US forces left.
What the imperial, colonial powers will not learn - let us use their real names - and cannot learn, is that Iraq is not a sectarian state but a tribal nation. Iraqi men and women marry by religion rather than by affiliation.
A year ago, I sat by a doctor whose brother had just been killed by gunmen, killers who, I had no doubt, were Shias enraged that the brother had objected to the building of a Shia mosque at the end of his road. I turned to the brother at the funeral lunch and asked if there would be a civil war in Iraq.
"Why do you and the Americans want us to have a civil war?" he asked. "I am a Sunni married to a Shia woman. "Do you want me to kill my wife?"
There are plenty of journalists and writers and White House spokesmen who would like to threaten Iraq with civil war. But why? Two years ago, the official US spokesman made just such a threat. "Al-Qa’ida’," he said - he meant Sunnis, of course - wanted a civil war. But the Shias declined to provide the Americans with their civil war and Iraq remained unhappily quiescent. Why? Why on earth did they decide not to have a civil war? Because the Imam Ali once told his people that "when you see another man, he is either your brother in religion or he is your brother in humanity".
In Lebanon, it’s easy to symbolise civil war. The Sunnis and Shias fought against the Christian Maronites - the conflict was Maronites versus the rest - and the Americans, Israelis, Syrians and others came in on whichever side they wished. Even now, the US government warns of the dangers of civil war again - as if the Lebanese need it. Alas, the Lebanese have endured a civil war at a cost of 150,000 dead. The Iraqis do not need that terrible conflict. Why do we wish it upon them?
"Some war crimes" and selective HUMANity (Jew-only)
"The fact that Israel was a small and young state, untainted by the brush of colonialism, made it more acceptable to other Third World countries." (The Iron Wall, p. 197)
Mr. Shlaim, the darling of "Israelis" who claim they are leftists (note the difference between claiming one is a leftist and actually being one; not that I am particularly fond of such vague divisions as "leftist" and "rightist"..) believes that "Israel" has not been tainted by the brush of colonialism. Well, he could be right. After all, if the coloniser is the colonised then the coloniser is not really a coloniser... Well, let's give Mr. Shlaim the benefit of the doubt, shall we? Let us suppose that his statement was of an innocent nature rather than a revisionist one.
Then Mr. Shlaim applies simple "Israeli" logic (sic) to the history of other countries in the region (as written by the revisionist "Israeli" scholars [sic]), and comes up with this impressive sentence:
"Israel's links with the Maronite community [of Lebanon] stretched back to the pre-Independence period, and after independence Israel continued to encourage the trend toward Christian separatism and Christian hegemony in Lebanon." (The Iron Wall, p. 342)
Wait wait, wait! Did I read that right? Israel existed before Lebanon's independence? And continued to encourage separatism after Lebanon gained its independence? According to Lebanese records and general knowledge, Lebanon gained independence in... 1943. That's some 4 and a half years before there was even the term "State of Israel"... Surely Mr. Shlaim knows what the hell he's talking about? After all, he's the "Israeli" left's (sic) darling historian (sic).... But no, that's not all. There is still some more. Ready? Read on...
Apparently some war crimes are despicable, inhumane, immoral, and others are... well, "some war crimes". Or so says Mr. Shlaim:
"This was not one of the IDF's more effective military engagements. Most of the PLO fighters fled to the north and the civilian population bore the brunt of the Israeli invasion. Villages were destroyed, some war crimes were committed, and thousands of peaceful citizens fled in panic from their homes." (The Iron Wall, p. 370)
Right, some war crimes were committed... now can we move on? It's high time the past be put behind us... (but surely not the [one and only] Holocaust) Brilliant, Mr. Shlaim. Absolutely brilliant. And of course, cheers to the "Israeli" left (sic)!
Of course, Mr. Shlaim feels that he shouldn't end it then and there. Oh no, he has to go on and insert the mother of all statements:
"Begin did have a spark of conscience and humanity in him, at least when it came to Jewish lives, and the burden of guilt finally overcame him." (The Iron Wall, p. 419)
Pray, Mr. Shlaim, would you be so kind as to tell me how you arrived to the impressive idea that one can have humanity in them, but not towards all human beings.... only towards... Jews. Should that not be called "Jewanity" (or something of the sort, I admit I am not as creative as your superior [oh yes, I am one of the goyim] Jewish kind when it comes to naming and terminology)?
Mr. Shlaim then notes, at the beginning of his 4-page "Operation Grapes of Wrath 101" (in which the author did not condemn - in any way or to any extent, however tiny - the Qana massacre perpetrated against Lebanese civilians. He only writes that "[t]he unwritten rules brokered by the United States in July 1993 stipulated that Hizbullah would not launch missiles into Israel and that Israel would not strike civilian target beyond its security zone." (The Iron Wall, 559).
Of course, Mr. Shlaim makes no Chomsky-esque sarcastic remarks about the ironic statement that "Israel" would not strike civilian targets. Wait, someone has apparently forgotten about the Geneva Conventions.... Who might that be, I wonder? Any chance it's the so-called non-existent "Israeli" left, with the leadership of such "historians" (aka revisionists in "Israeli" dictionaries) as Avi Shlaim?
Oh, and Mr. Shlaim, will you please be kind enough to read up on the difference between the word "Islamic" and "Islamist"? Thanks.