Archive | February 5th, 2011

The Egyptian Uprising: On the Universal aspiration for Freedom

NOVANEWS

 
Karl Remarks
 
 
Published with permission from Karlremaks
 
 
The sheer exhilaration that I felt in response to the Egyptian uprising, admittedly as a voluntarily-implicated observer, has been somewhat dampened by the reaction of Western elites to this phenomenal display of courage and yearning for change. On the one hand, it seemed that the Egyptian people have managed, despite extremely adverse circumstances, to translate the universal ideals of liberty and autonomy into concrete political actions that have inspired millions around the world. But on the other hand it seems to have exposed how little faith in those very same ideals there is in the West today, as exemplified by the strange debates that are being conducted about the prospects of the Egyptian uprising.
The most bizarre suggestion that I have heard is that this uprising somehow vindicates the neo-con position that democracy is possible in the Middle East! This confirms the impression that I had about the anti-Iraq War camp: its opposition to the War was not based on a principled rejection of Western intervention but on its lack of faith in democracy and liberty as universal values.
This position is normally phrased through the language of cultural relativism: we can’t impose our values on other cultures, we can’t pretend to know what’s better for other people, and the democratic model is not suitable for everyone. To be sure, many Arab intellectuals have fully absorbed this patronising outlook, ironically by uncritically accepting ideas that are fashionable in Western academic circles. The most blatant omission within such assumptions is that the problem here is not in the values themselves but in the act of their forceful imposition. Democracy can only thrive as a translation of popular will, and that can only develop within an autonomous framework.
It is absolutely hypocritical of the West to pretend today that democracy is not suitable for Egypt, having interfered actively for several decades to prop up the Mubarak’s regime and support with large packages of military aid, and not see that as one of the key factors that worked against the development of the pro-democracy movement. The gnashing of teeth in Washington about the prospect of Egypt turning into ‘another Iran’, aside from being unjustified, is even more hypocritical considering the historic support that the US lent to Islamic movements with the aim of fighting the spread of communism.
The historical short-sightedness that afflicts the contemporary Western outlook towards the Arab world completely ignores the history of secular movements and uprisings there throughout the 20th century, and even more blatantly ignores the role of the West in combating the spread of those movements. The most pressing question for Western elites has now become whether it is possible for democracy to develop in Arab countries, feeding the scepticism and anxiety about the Egyptian uprising. Astoundingly, it doesn’t strike any of those asking this question that merely posing it is incredibly patronising, as if there is something about Arabs that is inherently opposed to democracy.
Many will point to the victory of Hamas in the Palestinian elections and the victory of the Islamic Front in the 1992 elections as evidence that Arabs will inevitably vote for Islamic parties when given the chance. Aside from the obvious disregard for democracy that this suggests, it also ignores the context in which those electoral victories were achieved. Crucially, Western intervention had a role to play in both instances: by backing the authoritarian Algerian regime and by promoting the forcefully pushing the peace process that discredited the Palestinian Authority and led to popular discontent with its rule.
But what’s happening now in Egypt should be a reminder that democracy is a messy business, unlike the neutered version that European bureaucrats promote today. But Western elites can only understand democracy through the prism of the paternalistic version they have been promoting for decades and that’s why the un-predictability of the Egyptian uprising scares them. No one knows for certain what the outcome will be, especially given the frantic Western efforts to find a suitable solution that would maintain ‘stability’, but the brave actions of the Egyptian people today are the living embodiment of the universal aspirations for freedom and democracy.
It is Western elites and governments that are betraying those ideals through their hypocritical and cynical attitude. The sheer arrogance of suggesting that people who are risking their lives by standing up against a brutal regime are not ‘ready for democracy’ is insulting and patronising. Western governments should stop lecturing about democracy now that their lack of belief in it has been starkly exposed.
But as one friend jokingly remarked, perhaps the West is not ready for democracy yet.

Posted in EgyptComments Off on The Egyptian Uprising: On the Universal aspiration for Freedom

Luton And The English Defence League

NOVANEWS

 05/02/2011
 

 

Once more the thugs in the EDL want to stomp their supposed authority on the streets of Britain.

They have tried to do this before, in Leicester, October 2010 and before that in Oldham.

Each time they sought to attack ethnic minorities, intimidate ordinary people and even smash up restaurants. As I wrote before:

“1. The EDL *leadership* is stuffed full of BNPers, ex-BNPers, neo-Nazis and their allies.

2. The EDL always pick towns with high ethnic populations to hold their demonstrations. Their objective is to run amok, abuse and intimidate local people. That’s what they do.

3. The EDL want to start ethnic conflict and anyone that supports or excuses them is beyond the pale of reasoned debate, as they are aiding and abetting racial conflict. “

They are thugs, plain and simple, as their attack on Portsmouth’s Jami Mosque showed.

This time the EDL tried it on in Luton, but they couldn’t manage it despite their own bravado, plenty of booze and police protection, Nick Lowles of HOPE not Hate has more in a rolling commentary of the day:

” Foreign nazis are arriving in Luton looking for trouble. Far right activists from Sweden have been here for a couple of days and Norwegian and Dutch extremists are arriving shortly. Our spotters have also just seen a carload of German Blood & Honour supporters, wearing Combat 18 shirts, driving through the town.

We are also expecting hardliners from Vérité, Valeurs & Démocratie (VVD), a front organization of Bloc identitaire from France. “

“Further to my last post the police have stopped the car carrying the German Blood and Honour supporters and are currently searching them.

Some of the Dutch Defence League have arrived. I’ve heard that they were staying in Bayswater, West London, along with some of the German Defence League.

EDL groups from North London, Gateshead, Aylesbury and Milton Keynes are already here. A group boarded a train at St Pancras this morning but nowhere near the numbers the EDL gave to the press. The EDL have been given two pubs and a nightclub to meet up in. The landlords/owners are allowed to serve drinks until 12pm and then close the venues an hour later, after which the EDL march will begin. All 300 pubs across the town will be shut from 12pm and not allowed to reopen until 7pm.

Interestingly, the police have been erecting steel barriers across streets, both to keep the EDL and UAF apart but also on some of the roads linking the EDL march route and Bury Park, where the Muslim community are gathering.”

“There are 18 EDL coaches lined up along Dunstable Road waiting to enter Luton. Police seem unwilling to allow them to move until much closer to the time the demo starts.”

“The EDL leadership appear to have their hands full trying to keep their rowdy bunch in order. There’s the drunken Sunderland group, others throwing bottles at the police and now the Scottish Defence League are taunting their English counterparts with chants of “where are your famous EDL?” “

“I can now reveal that two of the speakers at today’s rally will be Austrian Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff and the surfing rabbi from the US, Nachum Shifren.

Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff is a representative of “Citizens’ Movement Pax Europa” and last year she was charged with “incitement” and “defamation of religious teachings” in Austria.

Nachum Shifren is an extremist Rabbi from California who has close links to the Tea Party.

Just for clarification, the march hasn’t actually started yet. There was some movement 25 minutes ago but it seems that they just moving into position. However, it is about to start any minute now.”

“One really has to question the tactics of the local police. While EDL thugs fight with police Stephen Lennon is helped out of the march and escorted – by police and his own security – to the square where the rally will be held.

Are they affording the same protection to local citizens terrified by the EDL demo?”

Posted in CampaignsComments Off on Luton And The English Defence League

The Man With The White Yarmulke

NOVANEWS

 

Blair Zionist servant

Three days ago Jerusalem urged its ‘Western allies’ to support Mubarak. Yesterday war criminal Tony Blair complied submissively suggesting that “Mubarak is immensely courageous and a force for good.”

The former British PM, who lied to us all, launched an illegal war based on a false dossier and made all of us complicit in the murder of 1.5 million Iraqis, praised the Egyptian president over his role in ‘peace negotiations’. Blair seems to follow the Israeli instructions and warns “against a rush to elections that could bring Muslim Brotherhood to power.”

Blair argued that the west was right to back Mubarak despite his authoritarian regime because he had maintained peace with Israel. In short, according to the former British PM,  ‘democratic enthusiasm’ is better pushed aside for the sake of the Jewish State’s interests. No wonder Lord Levy and the Labour Friends of Israel spent so many sheckels keeping Blair and Labour in power.

Speaking to Piers Morgan on CNN, Blair defended his backing for Mubarak. “I’ve worked with him on the Middle East peace process between the Israelis and the Palestinians …I have to say, he’s been immensely courageous and a force for good.”

One may have to agree with Blair that Mubarak’s treacherous actions against his people, the Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims could be interpreted as a ‘courageous act’. Similarly, some can also see Blair’s relentless, treacherous surrender to Zionist interests on the expense of humanity as courageous.  We can only hope that both leaders are brought to justice either by their people or by an international court. This would certainly appropriate their ‘courage’ within the right context. 

It seems as if Blair managed to succumb to Zio-Talmudic supremacy. “The region has unique problems that make political change different from the democratic revolutions in Eastern Europe,” he said.  “The principal issue was the presence of Islamist parties that will use democracy to gain power and then undermine the freedoms people seek.” For Blair, democracy and freedom are great except when applied to Muslims. I am left bewildered, what about the ‘freedom to be Muslim’? I am also perplexed by Blair’s fascination with democracy. As far as I can recall, it was American democracy that annihilated Dresden, Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It was Blair’s democratically elected government that launched the criminal war in Iraq.  It is also democratic Britain that fails to follow due process and lock Blair, his legal adviser and prime members of his cabinet behind bars.

Mr Blair, before you preach democracy to others, you should look in the mirror.

Posted in UKComments Off on The Man With The White Yarmulke

Liberation the American People

NOVANEWS

Burning rage ... protester stands on blazing Cairo street

In his latest Newsweek article Stephen Kinzer  wonders who  America is betting on to counter the popular  rising forces in the Middle East : “The same friends it has been betting on for decades” he answers.   “Mubarak’s pharaonic regime in Egypt, Mahmoud Abbas and his Palestinian Authority, the Saudi monarchy, and increasingly radical politicians in Israel. It is no wonder that Iran’s power is rising as the American-imposed order begins to crumble,” he concludes.
 
Kinzer explains America’s stance succinctly and accurately : “The U.S. keeps Mubarak in power – it gave his regime $1.5 billion in aid last year -mainly because he supports America’s pro-Israel policies, especially by helping Israel maintain its stranglehold on Gaza. It supports Abbas for the same reason; Abbas is seen as willing to compromise with Israel and is, therefore, a desirable negotiating partner….. American support for Mubarak and Abbas continues, although neither man is in power with any figment of legality; Mubarak brazenly stage-manages elections, and Abbas has ruled by decree since his term of office expired in 2009.”
 
In the light of Kinzer’s statement, the following questions surely need answering — Why does America support those regimes, whose leaders’ dictates, ideologies and methods of ruling are totally and openly incongruous with America’s alleged value system? And If America is genuinely concerned with the so-called ‘rise of Islam’, why then, did it eradicate Saddam Hussein’s distinctly secular regime? And if America is, as it claims, enthusiastic about encouraging  ‘non radicalised’ secular Arabs, why is it constantly seeking conflict with Bashir Asad, leader of another secular stronghold? And If America does indeed champion democracy, why does it support the Saudi regime, Mubarak and Abbas? Why does it not seek friendship with the democratically elected Hamas?
 
In short American policy seems to be a total mess — unless one is willing to openly admit that there is a clear coherent thread running through American foreign policy : it simply serves Israel’s interests.    
 

For decades American foreign policy has been dictated by Zionist forces within their administration. For decades, America has been exhausting its resources to chase the enemies of the Jewish state. It even sends its young boys and girls to fight and die in Zionist wars. The second Iraq War was obviously such a war. It is becoming clear that America’s decision makers have sacrificed the interests of the American people.
 
We learned yesterday that the Jewish Lobby in America shamelessly  slammed Republican Senator and Tea Party representative Rand Paul for  suggesting  that the “United States should halt all foreign aid including its financial aid to Israel”. Even the alleged  ‘peace seeking’ J Street was quick to attack the patriotic senator. And clearly they didn’t mince their words : “Senator Paul’s proposal would undermine the decades-long bipartisan consensus on U.S. support for Israel. Any erosion of support should concern Israel’s friends on both sides of the political aisle, and we call in particular on leaders and donors in Senator Paul’s party to repudiate his comments and ensure that American leadership around the world is not threatened by this irresponsible proposal,” the statement issued by J Street read.
 
National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) President and CEO David Harris repeated the same line of thought saying that “Paul’s suggestion is negligent, shortsighted, and just plain wrong….Senator Paul’s statement is yet another illustration of how the Republican Party continues to grow increasingly out of touch with the values of the vast majority of the American Jewish community.”
 
But NJDC’s spokesman David Harris must have failed to grasp that the  patriotic senator Paul is actually concerned with the interest of America, rather than the tribally orientated ‘values of the vast majority of the American Jews’, because Senator Rand Paul obviously points at a clear conflict between American interests and the foreign interests promoted by the Jewish lobby.
 
In his Newsweek article, Kinzer astutely points out that America needs “new approaches and new partners. Listening more closely to Turkey, the closest U.S. ally in the Muslim Middle East, would be a good start. A wise second step would be a reversal of policy toward Iran, from confrontation to a genuine search for compromise.”
 
But, It is clear beyond doubt here that America will not be able to integrate Kinzer’s very reasonable suggestions into its foreign policy unless it first liberates itself from the grip of the Jewish Lobby. And It has been proven that it is not easy for our greed-driven politicians to emancipate themselves voluntarily from the Lobby. As we read above, the ‘liberal’ J Street group have called upon donors to cut off the very life supply of Senator Rand Paul. And The Jewish Lobby in America would do the same to every American politician who dared to break the links.
 
However, in the wake of the current financial turmoil, I am convinced that more and more Americans are beginning to identify the root cause at the bottom of their flawed foreign policy.  By the time this happens, America may well be liberated.

 

 

Posted in USAComments Off on Liberation the American People

Zionist Melanie Philips: ”Israeli Hasbara is a joke”

NOVANEWS

 

Date

It is almost amusing to hear Philips dismissing Hasbara (Israeli propaganda) in Britain.

It is also very cheering to learn from Rabid Zionist Philips that in spite of the Israeli Lobby, David Aaronovitch, Nick Cohen and herself, the Palestinians are winning the hearts and minds of British public. 

I guess that it is about time Philips gathers the fact that humanism may win after all. 

 

 

Posted in UKComments Off on Zionist Melanie Philips: ”Israeli Hasbara is a joke”

Factbox: Most U.S aid to Egypt goes to military

NOVANEWS

 

(Reuters) – The United States has given Egypt an average of $2 billion annually since 1979, much of it military aid, according to the Congressional Research Service. The combined total makes Egypt the second largest recipient of U.S. aid after Israel.

The White House said on Friday it would review U.S. aid to Egypt based on events in the coming days amid mass protests aimed at ending President Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year rule.

Here are some facts about the aid:

— In 2010, $1.3 billion went to strengthen Egyptian forces versus $250 million in economic aid. Another $1.9 million went for training meant to bolster long-term U.S.-Egyptian military cooperation. Egypt also receives hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of excess military hardware annually from the Pentagon.

— The Obama administration has asked Congress to approve similar sums for the 2011 fiscal year.

— U.S.-Egyptian co-production of the M1A1 Abrams Battle tank is one of the cornerstones of U.S. military assistance. Egypt plans to acquire 1,200 of the tanks. General Dynamics Corp is the prime contractor for the program.

— Lockheed Martin Corp is building 20 new advanced F-16C/D fighter aircraft for Egypt. The final Egyptian F-16 under contract is to be delivered in 2013, joining the 240 Egypt already has purchased, according to Lockheed Martin, the Pentagon’s biggest supplier by sales.

— Egypt was the first Arab country to buy F-16s, widely viewed as a symbol of political and security ties with the United States.

— The United States also has supplied Boeing Co CH-47D CHINOOK transport helicopters, Northrop Grumman Corp E-2C Hawkeye Airborne Early Warning Command & Control aircraft and Patriot air-defense systems built by Lockheed and Raytheon Co.

— Part of U.S. economic aid is spent on democracy promotion programs in Egypt, a policy that has generated controversy in recent years. “On principle, the Egyptian government rejects U.S. assistance for democracy promotion activities, though it has grudgingly accepted a certain degree of programing,” Jeremy Sharp of the Congressional Research Service said in a background report updated on January 28.

(Reporting by Susan Cornwell and Jim Wolf; Editing by Paul Simao)

Posted in EgyptComments Off on Factbox: Most U.S aid to Egypt goes to military

Mu-Barak Zionist Servant’s

NOVANEWS

These are some serious times. All I can see around us is just violence and crime…
Two million people in Tahrir Square clearly wasn’t enough. “President” Mu-Barak still hasn’t got the message.

On Wednesday, undercover police officers hired by the Mu-Barak dictatorship attacked the demonstrators occupying the Square. Since then, at least five people have been killed, and over eight hundred injured. The widely-cited media-friendly phrase is “pro-Mu-Barak crowds”,

failing to mention the small fact that these people are being paid by the regime; the same regime the American government have been paying to keep in power for the last thirty-one years.
The idea of a popular uprising in support of Mu-Barak, when half of the population of eighty million live on less than one dollar per day, is not only inaccurate, but impossible. It is another attempt to distract from the real issue, and the real issue is a simple one; poor people will not accept their poverty for ever whilst the President lives in palaces.

As hip-hop artist Lowkey pointed out this week, the British media expressed shock and horror at “men with sticks running into crowds of protesters on horseback”. Funny that, as I seem to remember witnessing extremely similar scenes in London not so long ago.

The attempt to defeat the Egyptian revolution, however, has so far failed. The demonstrators remain steadfast in Tahrir Square, demanding the overthrowing of Hosni Mu-Barak. Mubarak seems extremely reluctant to do so; I guess that you get comfy in a job you’ve had for over three decades.

The demonstrations, by their sheer number, have clearly united huge swathes of Egyptian society. The issue is freedom, and as the case seems to be here, until the people have their freedom they refuse to be crushed.

However, that is not to say that it would be impossible to crush such an uprising. The Egyptian people have clearly reached a tipping point in their struggle, which could have one of two outcomes; victory, or massacre.

Now, more than ever, we must be vigilant, and we must wholeheartedly support their struggle. When the police arrest journalists and bloggers covering the demonstrations, we must demand their release. When Mu-Barak says he will leave after the next election, we must demand that he leaves now. When the British and American governments express “concerns”, we must remind them that they have kept him in power for thirty-one years. But above all, we must have faith in, and be inspired by the Egyptian people. After all, it is them, and only them, who can truly liberate their country.

Posted in EgyptComments Off on Mu-Barak Zionist Servant’s

Nazi’s Mass Murder Palestinian’s

NOVANEWS

 

I think most of you are familiar with AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell.”  Well, I certainly can’t think of a more appropriate theme song to accompany the mass murder being perpetrated against the Palestinian people by the Israeli government and their co-conspirators here in the United States.  Perhaps this should be Israel’s new national anthem, or perhaps used as the opening theme to the next Christians United for Israel conference.  You be the judge.

Please click on this link:

HIGHWAY TO HELL

It will open up a seperate window and should start playing the song immediately.  Wait until the vocals begin before you scroll down the page to view the images that accompany the lyrics.

 


 










                                                                                                                                                              
   

                                                                                                                                               

 














 

Posted in Middle EastComments Off on Nazi’s Mass Murder Palestinian’s

What the United States has at stake in Egypt

NOVANEWS

 

By Tom Curry

Though it may be weeks before the outcome of the protests in Egypt is clear, the turmoil that erupted there raises an obvious question: If the $68 billion in aid the U.S. has sent to Egypt since 1948 is seen as an investment in political stability in the Middle East, has the investment benefited U.S. interests, or is it failing or perhaps even backfiring?

Under both Democratic and Republican presidents for the past 60 years the United States has sent economic and military aid to Egyptian governments.

In fiscal 2009, the United States spent about $1.5 billion on aid to Egypt, 86 percent of it military aid. White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said Friday that the U.S. aid package would be reviewed in light of how Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak’s government responds to the unrest.

In a broadcast address to the nation on Friday night, Mubarak said he’d pursue reform of government and the economy, including replacing his entire Cabinet, but he portrayed the anti-government uprising as part of a plot to destabilize Egypt and topple his regime.

A short time later, President Barack Obama urged the Egyptian government to “refrain from any violence toward peaceful protestors” and to enter into discussions with citizens. The Egyptian people, he said in a televised statement from the White House, have “rights that are universal” — including the right to free speech and “the ability to determine their own destiny.”

  1. Related coverage

  1. Obama to Mubarak: Don’t use force on your people

  2. What the United States has at stake in Egypt

  3. U.S. thinking changes on ‘fluid’ situation in Egypt

  4. Your questions on Egypt answered

  5. Tut’s treasures damaged but rescued

  6. Net-less Egypt faces economic deadline

  7. Infograph: Egypt falls off the Internet

  8. What Egypt’s rulers don’t want you to see

The United States “has a close partnership with Egypt” but Obama said “we’ve also been clear that there must be reform — political, social and economic reforms — that meet the aspirations of the Egyptian people.”

He said he’d spoken to Mubarak after the Egyptian leader addressed his people and told him he had a responsibility to “take concrete steps and actions” to fulfill his promises of democracy and economic opportunity.

Since 1979, Egypt has been the second largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid, after Israel, according to a 2009 Congressional Research Service (CRS) report.

Beginning in 1973, when Secretary of State Henry Kissinger’s diplomacy led to Egyptian-Israel accords and, eventually, to the 1979 peace treaty with Israel, Egypt has been central to U.S. strategy in the Middle East. The Cairo regime has remained a vital counterweight to Iran and a mediator with the Palestinian Hamas regime.

Did investment pay off?
Daniel Kurtzer, a former U.S. ambassador to Egypt who now teaches at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, said the investment was worth it.

“We’ve gotten more than 30 years of very strong relations with the most important country in the Middle East — and that has taken a large investment from the United States. We’ve put in billions of dollars of military and economic assistance, but we’ve also gotten a very strong return on that investment: A peace treaty between with Egypt and Israel that has persisted and really never been violated during the course of 30-plus years, and an ally in a region that every American knows is unstable and potentially dangerous for us.”

He added, “It’s very rare to see this kind of a long-standing relationship persist between a superpower and a regional power.”

But what if the protests ultimately lead to a new government in Cairo that resents American support for Mubarak, who has ruled since 1981?

That, Kurtzer said, is a hypothetical question. “I don’t even think we’re close to that,” he said.

Can Mubarak survive?

But Steven Cook, a fellow for Middle Eastern Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations who just returned to Washington from Cairo, thinks the end game may be nearer than many suppose. He referred to the events he witnessed there as “the apparent decomposition of the Mubarak regime.”

  1. Related coverage

  1. Obama to Mubarak: Don’t use force on your people

  2. What the United States has at stake in Egypt

  3. U.S. thinking changes on ‘fluid’ situation in Egypt

  4. Your questions on Egypt answered

  5. Tut’s treasures damaged but rescued

  6. Net-less Egypt faces economic deadline

  7. Infograph: Egypt falls off the Internet

  8. What Egypt’s rulers don’t want you to see

 

Even with an army and police crackdown, he said, “It is still by no means clear that Mubarak can hang on.”

One plausible scenario, according to Cook, would be for the military to shunt aside the 82-year old Mubarak and then “reconstitute the regime under new leadership.”

But that is unlikely to appease the Cairo protesters, who voiced “a desire to live in a more open and democratic society,” he said, adding that “I heard very little about economic grievances.”

Cook — speaking a few hours before Obama made his remarks from the White House — said the administration’s calls for reform “seem hopelessly behind the curve. The discussion of ‘stability’ — to the extent that it will be examined by Egyptians after this crisis — will be seen as an implicit American endorsement of a crackdown on a people who are demanding their freedom.”

Cook said, “My hope is that when President Obama finally does speak, he doesn’t use the word ‘stability’ and he focuses more on the need for whoever is in charge in Egypt to respect the rights of people who are demanding freedom, which is obviously close to our hearts as Americans.”

Kurtzer cautioned that observers should not over-interpret what they are seeing on television and extrapolate an outcome. Friday’s demonstrations on came on a day when “people don’t work and they’ve been riled up from what they’ve heard in mosques,” he said. “They’ve had the time to go out on the street. Whether or not it has legs has yet to be determined.”

Mubarak, he added, “has been known the past to finally find the pulse of public opinion. And there might be some changes in personnel and policy.”

But Kurtzer acknowledged, “There’s great concern in Washington about the stability and longevity of the government.”

Video: Engel: Mubarak regime restores cellphone service (on this page)

David Bender, a Middle East specialist at Eurasia Group, a political risk consulting firm in Washington, D.C., said a worst-case scenario would see a strong backlash against the U.S. for its longtime support of Mubarak.

“The nightmare for the United States is a kind of replication of Iran in 1979, where there are huge protests against the authoritarian ruler identified as being close to the United States, and that ruler falls, and then the U.S. is left with very few levers of influence in the new regime,” he said.

There is a sense among many Egyptians, he said, that much American aid “goes directly or indirectly to supporting the security services, which have been used to suppress dissent. So there’s a risk of there being significant anger at the United States.”

“There are almost innumerable scenarios at this point,” he said. “But one possible scenario is that a hard-line government comes to power and takes an anti-American policy and cancels the peace treaty with Israel.”

Strategic value of Suez Canal
The Suez Canal is also a concern, Bender said.

According to the 2009 CRS report, the U.S. Navy sends an average of a dozen ships through the canal every month and “receives expedited processing for nuclear warships to pass through the canal, a valued service that can normally take weeks otherwise required for other foreign navies.”

“A lot of U.S. military strategy in the Middle East and, in the Persian Gulf especially, presupposes very close relations with the Egyptian government and essentially free access to use the Suez Canal,” Bender said. If there are now questions about that access, he said, that may require changes in U.S. strategic thinking.

A fine line for U.S to walk
Kurtzer said it would be difficult for the Obama administration to strike a balance between prodding reform and sympathizing with popular democracy.

“We don’t want the (Egyptian) government to overreact,” he said. On the other hand, “We would like the government come out of this in a manner that will sustain our relationship, but also will provide some opening for more voices. I don’t know of a case where we’ve ever been able to balance ourselves on that tightrope.”

Whatever the U.S. might wish, Kurtzer said, its ability to influence events in Egypt is limited.

“Even in a situation in which you are providing substantial assistance, you don’t get to call the shots,” he said. “The American people need to understand that. It buys you a seat at the table but this is an Egyptian government/Egyptian people issue. The United States will not be in a position of dictating decisions.”

He said U.S. policy had to seek a middle way. “The argument of ‘democracy now’ or ‘authoritarianism is safer’ — both those arguments taken to the extreme don’t work in terms of our own interests,” he said.

Apart from the strategic danger to the United States, the crisis in Egypt poses risks to American firms that sell helicopters, tanks, and other military hardware to Egypt, and to American wheat farmers: Egypt ranks third among foreign purchasers of American wheat, after Japan and Mexico.

  1. Only on msnbc.com

    1. Super Bowl ‘a desirable target’ for terrorists

    2. Is the health care law constitutional?

    3. On Twitter, Egypt conflict is riveting, confusing

    4. Who should — and shouldn’t — buy Verizon iPhone

    5. U.S. woman tells of Cairo’s descent into ‘hell’

    6. NBC’s Cairo producer answers your questions

    7. What you need to know about the crisis in Egypt

The CRS report describes U.S.-Egyptian co-production of the Abrams tank as “one of the cornerstones of U.S. military assistance to Egypt.” Some of the tank’s components are manufactured in Egypt and others made by General Dynamics in Sterling Heights. Mich.

The Cairo government has used also U.S. military aid to buy F-16 jet fighters from Lockheed Martin, and Chinook and Apache Longbow helicopters from Boeing.

So, from farmers in Kansas to aircraft workers making Chinooks in Ridley Township, Pa. there are many Americans with a very specific stake in what unfolds in Egypt.

Video: Engel: Mubarak regime restores cellphone service

Open in new window

?

Posted in EgyptComments Off on What the United States has at stake in Egypt

Say NO to Birmingham University Zionist Policy

NOVANEWS

We the undersigned,

Support the 12 University of Birmingham students facing disciplinary procedures that could result in the termination of their degrees. The students are facing the disciplinary action after a peaceful occupation on Monday 17th January. The group undergoing disciplinary action were part of a larger group opposing the University’s plans for department cuts and staff redundancies. We condemn the arbitrary isolation of members of the ‘Stop Fees and Cuts at the University of Birmingham’ as an inappropriate way to respond to very serious concerns.
We condemn the use of unreasonable force at the end of the occupation by university security staff that resulted in several injuries against peaceful protestors. We condemn the university’s refusal to allow for concerned staff members and union members to enter the building to oversee the eviction as impartial witnesses.

We believe the students involved were acting in an altruistic manner, and although they may have breached some university regulations, we ask the university to show leniency.
We ask the University to make a statement apologising to students and staff for the use of unreasonable force and to ensure impartial witnesses are allowed access during any future occupations.

Posted in EducationComments Off on Say NO to Birmingham University Zionist Policy

Shoah’s pages

www.shoah.org.uk

KEEP SHOAH UP AND RUNNING

February 2011
M T W T F S S
« Jan   Mar »
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
28