Archive | April 10th, 2011

The Revolution That Wasn’t–Egypt Junta Crushes Tahrir Square Protests, Killing Two

NOVANEWS

by crescentandcross

 

Witnesses Report Arrest of Soldiers Who Tried to Join Protest

by Jason Ditz,

Faced with rallies across Cairo which some estimated were upwards of a hundred thousand demonstrators demanding reforms, the Egyptian military junta attacked Tahrir Square Saturday morning to disperse protesters.

The troops march in force on Saturday morning, firing mostly into the air and sporadically into the crowds. In the end the protesters fled the square, and at least two were reported killed. 15 others were wounded.

Witnesses also report that the military had arrested a number of soldiers and other military officers who had attempted to take part in the protests. The demonstrators tried to protect some of the officers from arrest, sparking additional clashes.

The protesters were mostly demanding that the junta follow through on its promises of reforms after the ouster of long-time dictator Hosni Mubarak. Some, however, are growing increasingly impatient, and demanding the ouster of junta leader Field Marshall Tantawi as well.

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Zio-Nazi pounds Gaza for third day

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Palestinian relatives gather around the body of the commander of the Islamic Hamas militant Tayser Abu Snima, 29, at the morgue of Al Najar hospital f
By IBRAHIM BARZAK and JOSEF FEDERMAN, Associated Press

 

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip – Palestinian militants fired more than 30 rockets at southern Israel on Saturday and Israeli warplanes killed five militants in the Gaza Strip in the most intense fighting since Israel’s 2008-2009 offensive in the Hamas-ruled territory.

The escalating series of strikes and counterstrikes has killed 18 Gazans since it began on Thursday following a Hamas missile attack against an Israeli school bus. The continuing clashes are increasing the probability of a full-scale military confrontation.

Israeli officials said the airstrikes would continue as long as the rocket attacks persist. Hamas officials insisted they were trying to restore quiet, but said they were prepared to fight.

“Hamas will not stand idle in front of this escalation,” Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said. “We have exercised a limited response so far, but we warn the occupation against continuing with their crimes.”

After two years of relative calm, the situation began to deteriorate nearly three weeks ago with rocket fire toward Israel and a retaliation that killed Gazans.

It escalated dramatically last weekend when an airstrike killed three Palestinian militants who Israel said were plotting to carry out a cross-border kidnapping. On Thursday, Hamas militants fired an anti-tank missile at an Israeli school bus, wounding two people on board, including a teenage boy.

Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, said that act crossed a line and he vowed a harsh response.

Hamas says Israel has used excessive force in its retaliation, which has killed six civilians and wounded more than 65 people.

Gaza militants fired more than 30 Grad-style Katyusha rockets and more than 10 mortar shells into Israel Saturday in what Israeli police said was the biggest single-day bombardment since the Gaza war.

Several missiles fell in uninhabited areas near the southern Israeli cities of Ashkelon and Beersheba, while seven were intercepted by Israel’s new missile shield, Iron Dome. There were no reports of injuries, but damage was caused.

Iron Dome, activated earlier this week, is the first system in the world able to knock down short-range rockets. The homegrown system could potentially alter the balance of power if it proves able to consistently stop a large number of rockets. Israeli officials stress it is still largely unproven.

Thousands in Gaza attended funerals for the militants slain Saturday, among them a Hamas commander in the southern city of Rafah, along the border with Egypt.

In Gaza City, crowds of onlookers, including groups of children, watched as bodies wrapped in green Hamas flags were carried through the streets. Militants fired in the air and chanted, “The blood of our martyrs will not be spilled in vain.”

Hamas, a virulently anti-Israel militant group backed by Iran, has controlled Gaza since seizing the territory in a brief civil war against the rival Fatah faction in 2007. Late the following year, Israel invaded the territory to stop years of persistent rocket fire.

During the three-week operation, Israeli forces killed some 1,400 people, including hundreds of civilians, while 13 Israelis were also killed. After suffering heavy losses, Hamas has largely honored an informal truce since then.

Israel believes Hamas has recovered from the war, rebuilding its forces and restocking its arsenal with deadlier weapons. Israel believes Hamas now has rockets capable of striking as far as Tel Aviv, some 50 miles (80 kilometers) north of Gaza, as well as anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles it did not possess during the war.

Israel’s battle against Hamas has stretched well beyond Gaza. In recent weeks alone, the Israeli navy intercepted a cargo ship that was carrying arms allegedly bound for Hamas. It also mysteriously captured a Gaza engineer, who was last seen in Ukraine, and charged him with being a rocket mastermind.

Last week, Sudan accused Israel of carrying out a covert airstrike that killed two people. Israel has not commented, but officials have repeatedly said they believe Sudan is a transit point for illicit arms headed to Gaza.

Both sides may be using the current flare-up to test each other’s capabilities in the wake of the 2008-2009 war. Israel would want to see what weapons Hamas really has obtained, while Hamas has an interest in seeing whether the much-touted Iron Dome system really works.

Still, both sides were signaling they hope to restore the calm. Israeli officials said the rocket fire, and particularly Thursday’s bus attack, required a strong response. The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were discussing strategic deliberations, said the airstrikes were aimed at deterring Hamas and would continue until the rocket fire stops.

Israeli military analyst Reuven Pedatzur said Israel has no interest in a large-scale assault on Gaza, but that if casualties mounted it may be forced to act.

“The sad irony is that it all depends on a single rocket. If it lands and kills three kids, there will be an operation. If not, there won’t be,” he said.

Ihab Ghussein, spokesman for the Hamas Interior Ministry, which oversees the group’s security forces, said Hamas has been in touch with various militant factions in Gaza, as well as with regional governments in hopes of restoring the calm.

“We have already stated our position that we want to maintain calm and stability in the Gaza Strip,” he said. “But the occupation forces insist on destroying all the understandings and carrying out a bloodbath in Gaza.”

However, a spokesman for Hamas’ military wing, Abu Obeida, said that calm was not an option under the current circumstances.

Hamas officials said they are ready to fight and believe conditions are far better now than two years ago. The group said it had fired 68 rockets and mortar shells over the past two days.

Hamas also feels its international position is much stronger now following the revolution in neighboring Egypt. Former President Hosni Mubarak, ousted in February by a popular uprising, was a staunch ally of Israel in its battle against Hamas. As Egypt prepares for elections, potential leaders have signaled they will take a more lenient approach toward Hamas.

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Suspect Identified in Santa Monica Bomb Blast

NOVANEWS

by crescentandcross

 

Ed note–the news coming out was that this was originally thought to have NOT been a bomb, but rather a mechanical failure at a building next door that sounded like an explosion. We now know why, since the suspect in it is one Israel Fisher, Jewish. Had anyone of the Islamic or Christian persuasion been involved in this their religious leanings would have been THE story and we would have heard about it for weeks on end.

LOS ANGELES — Local police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Saturday said they were looking for a suspect in connection with an explosion earlier in the week near a Santa Monica synagogue.

Police initially attributed the blast, which occurred outside the Chabad House at 6:45 a.m. Thursday, to an industrial incident involving cement and other materials. The explosion sent a pipe encased in concrete into the roof of a building near the synagogue.

After an investigation by bomb technicians and detectives, investigators determined the explosion was the result of a “deliberately constructed” device that they have linked to transient named Ron Hirsch, according to a joint statement from the Santa Monica Police Department and the FBI.

Police are now seeking Mr. Hirsch, a heavyset white male they described as “extremely dangerous”, on state charges of possession of a destructive device and other unrelated charges. They released photograph of a man they said was Mr. Hirsh.

Mr. Hirsch, 60, is also known as Israel Fisher and has been known to frequent synagogues and Jewish community centers seeking charity, according to the statement. The motive for his attack is still unknown.

The joint investigation is on-going and is being handled by the Santa Monica Police, the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and other authorities.

The FBI didn’t return calls seeking further comment.

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Dorothy Online Newsletter

NOVANEWS

 

Posted by: Sammi Ibrahem
Chair of West Midland PSC

Dear Friends,

Seems that the Goldstone fracas is still popular stuff.  Today’s NY Times has both the Israeli side of the story (‘bravo to Goldstone for realizing that he was wrong’) by Nahum Barnea http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/11/opinion/11iht-edbarnea11.html?ref=global

And one that has been making the rounds—Roger Cohen’s, which begins “We have a new verb, “to Goldstone.” Its meaning: To make a finding, and then partially retract it for uncertain motive. Etymology: the strange actions of a respected South African Jewish jurist under intense pressure from Israel, the U.S. Congress and world Jewish groups”http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/08/opinion/08iht-edcohen08.html?ref=global

Frankly, I’ve had enough of Goldstone for the present, though a close friend assures me that he is a very decent person, and has sent me a link to an interview that would seem to show this.  I’ve not yet had time to listen (but intend to).  In case you would like to here are the links

Whole video:

http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/10232009/profile.html (but in 2 sections; not sure what this means)

Part I: http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/10232009/watch.html

Part II: http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/10232009/watch2.html

In any event, I do not intend to discuss the case more unless something really new comes up.

This morning a gentleman speaking on the radio complained that there was nothing in the international press about what was happening here.  The only item he’d found had the heading “9 Palestinians Die as Israel Hits Gaza in Retaliation for Hamas Attack on Bus” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/09/world/middleeast/09gaza.html?ref=middleeast

Of course if one reads the article there is also information about Israel as well, but as this fellow said, most people read only headlines.  He might be right.  I can affirm that he was correct about the international press.  As far as what was happening in our parts, there was very nearly zilch, and today was not much better.  There are apparently more important events going on in this part of the world and Africa to get anyone excited about a brawl between Israel and Gaza.  There were, however, a few pieces about the hoped for cease fire.  One of the best pieces about what Gazans suffer was written March 24, but is no less actual for the current situation “Gazans count cost of escalating violence” http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-12854225

Our domestic papers are of course filled with news, including an item that might possibly have helped convince Israel’s leaders to agree to a cease fire—the Arab League is considering making Gaza a ‘no fly zone’http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4054848,00.html

Let us hope that the cease fire holds, for whatever reason.  Let us hope that the blockade on Gaza will be lifted so that Gazans can live once again as human beings, and so that the Israeli towns and communities near the Gaza border can live in peace, too.

Now to a few additional subjects.

Rachel Corrie’s trial has resumed.  Here the link to the report of what occurred at the session on April 4, 2011. http://rachelcorriefoundation.org/blog/2011/04/04/unit-commander-says-ordered-to-continue-bulldozer-work-despite-danger-to-civilians

There were two op-eds in today’s Haaretz worth reading.  One of these, Gideon Levy’s ‘Israel wouldn’t need propaganda if it changed its policies’

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/israel-wouldn-t-need-propaganda-if-it-changed-its-policies-1.355052

is a perfect response to the item that I sent yesterday about the intention to open a ‘pro-Israel media outlet that would not be propaganda.’  The second one is by Zvi Bar’el, who argues that Israel should recognize Palestinian statehoodhttp://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/israel-should-recognize-palestinian-statehood-1.355051 Very clever, though there is one statement that I don’t fathom: “Once a state is established there is no turning back, and its borders can only be established after the state itself is established.”  What does he mean by saying that “borders can only be established after the state itself is established”?  Seems to me that all the countries that now recognize the Palestinian right to a state, also recognize that it will be within the 1967 borders.  In any event, the piece does present a novel ideahttp://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/israel-should-recognize-palestinian-statehood-1.355051

Other news include ‘mass arrests of women from Awarta’(a village near to Itamar, where 5 in one family were killed). Awarta is a quiet village that has suffered a good deal from Itamar settlers.  No one—Palestinian, Asian, Israeli, or other–has so far been accused of being the suspected killer.  But it is not enough that the settlers take their wrath out on the village and villagers, but so also the IOF which began by arresting many of the males from the village, and now the females.http://english.aljazeera.net/news/middleeast/2011/04/201147213052467175.html

Finally, I want to complete this message with a truly beautiful and wise sermon, forwarded to me by Elana W.  Please distribute it widely.  The initial comments below are by the person from whom Elana received it.

If there is no more shooting from either side (and I am not implying symmetry) and the quiet holds for a time, then tomorrow will be a better day.

Enjoy the sermon.

Dorothy

===============

This is a great sermon.  This is great to use in approaching churches.

Note: Those of you who are new to my mailing list may not be familiar with the extraordinary ministry of the Rev. David Smith from Sydney, Australia. Take a look at his website: Fr. David Smith.

http://www.fatherdave.org/

Poke around a little at his website and you’ll find a forum. Dave wrote the article pasted below.

Peace, Roy Hayes

****

http://www.fatherdave.org/article/article_1383.html

Am I My Palestinian Brother’s Keeper?
by Rev. David B. Smith

Am I my Palestinian brother’s keeper?
Marrickville Council, BDS, and the politics of shame
________________________________________

In December 2010 Marrickville Council (representing various suburbs in the inner-west of Sydney) voted to support the global ‘Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions Campaign’ (BDS) against the Israeli government, aimed at ending the Palestinian Occupation.

In the months that followed, and most especially in the lead-up to the State election in the March 2011, Council’s pro-BDS stand came under increasing criticism. Councillors who were party members were put under pressure to publicly withdraw their support for the campaign by senior party officials. Others were threatened with various forms of legal action. Almost all were threatened with physical violence via anonymous calls and emails.

Some critics attacked the BDS campaign itself as being naïve or misguided. The majority though simply attacked the presumption of Council for meddling in international affairs when such issues should be left to the federal government’s Department of Foreign Affairs.

________________________________________

For those whose Biblical knowledge is hazy, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” is one of those archetypal Scriptural questions that the Bible doesn’t deem to be worthy of an answer. It was first enunciated by Cain in one of the early chapters of Genesis, as Cain attempts to squirm his way out of God’s probing interrogation about the fate of his murdered brother.

Along with “who is my neighbour?” and a handful of other disingenuous queries (that likewise never receive a direct response in the Bible) such questions are intended as rhetorical, and are asked solely with a view to excusing the questioner from fraternal responsibilities.

I see a similar dynamic at work in so many of the questions that have been raised around here of late, concerning whether it should be the responsibility of local government to take a stand on international human rights issues, such as that taken by Marrickville Council in their support of the global ‘Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions’ campaign (BDS) that protests the Palestinian Occupation. Is it really the job of local government to worry about such things? Shouldn’t Council stick to the job of maintaining roads and taking out the garbage? Since when did we become our Palestinian brother’s keeper?

I’m not suggesting that all those who raise such questions do so with evil intent – not at all. I’ve heard these questions raised by good people of good conscience, and yet I do think that such questions inevitably reveal something of the mindset of the questioner.

Here is the response I now give to those who raise this question over whether it is appropriate for local government to get involved in international affairs:

“If you had members of your own family living in Gaza, and if it had been some of your nieces and nephews who had been killed in the last IDF incursion, would you really be objecting to the fact that your local government was trying to do something about it?”

Now… take a deep breath before you answer. Be honest! Even if you do hold strong opinions as to the proper roles of the various levels of government, if it were your own sisters and brothers who were suffering, would you really object?

And here’s the kicker, of course – these people are your sisters and brothers!

This is the real problem I believe. We don’t think of the Palestinian people in this way. Perhaps we feel a closer kinship with the white citizens of Israel? Perhaps we don’t feel any kinship with anybody beyond our own shores? Either way, this is the problem, and it’s the real issue that lies behind so many of these questions.

Indeed, this is the problem I see behind all of the kafuffle that has been going on here over the last few months – the debates about appropriate governmental responsibilities, backed up by a well-coordinated smear campaign against those who support BDS, which is labelled as racist and extremist (extraordinary labels to apply to a strategy of non-violent resistance to a military occupation)! The real problem is not lack of clarity about correct political procedure nor a misunderstanding of the exact nature of the BDS campaign, but a simple lack of compassion!

In all these debates about procedure and about the electoral value of pro-Palestinian policies, the suffering people of Gaza and the West Bank are completely sidelined! What we need to come to terms with here is the fact that these people are not simply a policy issue. The men, women and children of Palestine are human beings worthy of respect, and the violation of their human rights is something that should offend us all. When we feel this offence deep down in our souls, the procedural issues are put into proper perspective. Indeed, they are seen for what they are: a simple excuse for inaction!

I recently finished reading an excellent biography of Dietrich Bonheoffer (the great German Christian leader who was a part of the plot to kill Hitler) and the most startling thing I learned from that book was that most of Hitler’s generals were apparently opposed to Hitler most of the time. For almost the entirety of the war, most of Germany’s key military leaders hated Hitler’s policies and wanted to get rid of him as their leader! So what stopped them? Apparently it was primarily a concern for proper procedure!

There were appropriate and inappropriate ways of replacing a leader, and this action needed to be pursued through the appropriate mechanisms of government, etc., etc. And so, apart from heroic individuals like Bonheoffer and Von Stauffenberg, who cared more about the fate of their Jewish sisters and brothers than they did about governmental protocols, nobody did anything!

The author of the Bonheoffer biography attributed the generals’ inaction largely to ‘German stuffiness’ and the desire to do things ‘by the book’. I suspect though that all such stuffiness really only functions as another convenient excuse for inaction.

For we human beings are great at avoiding our responsibilities while maintaining an air of self-righteous virtuosity! And so we bluster on about the need for political correctness and how we must avoid doing anything rash or inappropriate, and perhaps we even go so far as to form a committee to discuss the matter further at an appropriate time. And all the while the world burns!

Wake up, people of Marrickville! Wake up, world! What we lack here is not political nous but compassion. We need to take the suffering of the Palestinian people seriously – recognising them as our sisters and brother in the human condition. And we need to be honest with ourselves and stop hiding behind questions like, “Is it really our responsibility?” and “Am I my Palestinian brother’s keeper?”

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Intolerance–Then and Now

NOVANEWS

 

This post is a bit of a departure for the website.  While our focus is generally

on what is happening in Israel and Palestine, we want to also occasionally

draw the connections between the political culture here in the U.S. and in

Israel and Palestine, and how they influence one another.


 

Protesters at the Museum of Tolerance in LA

 

Yesterday in Manhattan and LA, protests were held at the Museum of Tolerance

in each city.  The occasion was an event to honor the Freedom Riders, brave civil

rights activists who put their bodies on the line in the 1960′s in the struggle for

equality for African-Americans in the U.S.

The Museum of Tolerance has taken a position against the Park 51 mosque near

Ground Zero, has helped foment Islamophobia in the U.S., and is building its

museum–for tolerance!– on the site of a Muslim cemetery in Jerusalem. While the

Museum is celebrating the work of those fighting for civil rights decades ago, why

does it not speak out for the equal rights of Muslim Americans today?

This is the question asked at today’s protests, sponsored by Jews Against Islamoph-

obia in New York (whose members include JVP-NY, Jews Say No!, Jews for Racial

and Economic Justice, and American Jews for a Just Peace) and JVP-LA and Code

Pink in LA.


 

 

protesters outside the Museum of Tolerance in New York

Dinu Ahmed, of Women Against Islamophobia and Racism, was one of the featured

speakers at the rally in New York.  We thought her beautiful, powerful speech was worth

reprinting in its entirety:

April 6, 2011

Press Conference in front of the Museum of Tolerance

Dinu Ahmed

Thank you so much for having me here and thanks to all of you for coming out in

solidarity with members of the Muslim community.  Today, the Museum of Tolerance

honors the courageous Freedom Riders who put their beliefs about dignity and civil

rights into practice. It is an incredible history of honorable people who stood up for a

community under attack that the Museum of Tolerance pays tribute to today, a history

that has profoundly affected the lives of Americans across the United States.

If I may, I’d like to share a story with you now. While briefly working as a community

organizer up in Harlem, I co-facilitated a workshop on Islamophobia. Many of our mem-

bers at this workshop had experienced race-based discrimination in the 1960s. We were

talking about hate crimes and arson attacks on mosques taking place in the present day,

when an older African-American who was not Muslim spoke up. Her voice was trembling

and she had tears in her eyes, as she said, “I thought this period was over. I can’t believe

people are still dealing with the struggles we dealt with and thought were behind us.”

We saw in each other, in the intimacy of that moment – that the roots of injustice against

people because of the identities they carry in this world are really just the same.

The thing about a civil rights movement is, it is a struggle that must continually be

engaged in. The communities that encounter aggressive scrutiny and discrimination

may change, but the struggle remains the same.

Today, the Museum of Tolerance is setting up a videoconference so that high school

youth can engage with Freedom Riders.  As a youth worker, I wonder if the Museum

of Tolerance has considered the impact of their stance against the right of Muslims to

worship in Lower Manhattan upon young Muslims in America. After worshipping at

Park 51 some months ago with my 14-year old sister and her friend, a man hurled

obscenities at us and told us to leave this country and go home.

Sadly, this is an occurrence that is happening to young Muslim Americans everywhere.

They are being told that they are not wanted, that there are neighborhoods in this city

that are off-limits, and the Museum of Tolerance, in their public stance against our right

to worship in Lower Manhattan, holds responsibility in furthering such xenophobia and

anti-Muslim sentiment. It has to be understood that the hate discourse around this one

center has created a ripple effect around the city and the whole country, leading to zoning

challenges around mosques in over a dozen states, hate speech and violence.  The Museum

of Tolerance has played a role in this by condemning the Muslim community. Their hate is

playing out not only in New York, not only in the U.S., but across the world in Jerusalem,

as they plan to build a site upon the remains of Muslims. The question remains – why does

the Museum of Tolerance want to erase our presence, our heritage, our institutions here in

New York and Jerusalem?

In closing, I have to say that it dishonors the meaning of what those before us have contrib-

uted to the civil rights movement if we cannot relate their fight to the civil rights movement

of today.  History is not like a dusty album we lay up on our shelves and appreciate once in a

blue moon. The struggles of yesterday bleed into the struggles of today, and it is our

responsibility to be ever conscious of the patterns of oppression, and stand on the right side

of the fight for dignity and civil rights for all, here and now. Thank you.

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Britain opposes call to retract Goldstone Report

NOVANEWS

 

Have they suddenly discovered their backbone?


 

DEBBIE MENON

 

You can always take the vertebrae out of a vertebrate (the procedure is probably described as an vertebraectomy), but I doubt that one can be installed in an invertebrate.

However, if the body was once a vertebrate, and has had an incomplete vertebratectomy which may have left a vestige of a vertebrae, then it might be possible for an new one to resprout, develop and grow.

It would probably be a lengthy and painful process though, and the denizens would have to relearn how to walk upright again which might be a bit difficult after crawling and slithering about in the slime and under the rocks and fallen logs of the world where other Zionist white grubs live.

Not underestimating the powers of Zion, all of this might or very well could be just another move to get Judge Goldstone himself to request that the Report be retracted, as mentioned in the article below, which would be his final and total submission to and act of contrition and repentance, and then they could be done with him, and bury what is left of his ruined character for, politically, publicly and professionally he is a dead man walking.

He is Jewish. His entire life, his entire milieu, his entire social network and culture is in and among the world of Jewry. The defamation of character, slander, and professional threats exercised by ADL and AIPAC minions are sufficiently devastating to have a strong influence on most people who might choose to go up against Israel, but even worse would be the social ostracism and shunning by all the rest of the people in a tightly knit and group-identifying culture such as is Judaism.

Goldstone’s retraction only further exposes the devastating effect of Zionist networks over ‘anyone’ (eg:Helen Thomas/ Former President Carter) who stands up to Israel. “Apparently according to his friends, Goldstone didn’t fully understand how politically charged any criticism of Israel could be, and was blindsided by the anger and emotion the report engendered.” Read more: Did a Private Meeting Prompt Goldstone To Change His Mind?

A younger man with other interests and cultural breadth like Norman Finkelstein and Gilad Atzmon might survive it (although I suspect Finkelstein is suffering cultural isolation and loneliness also), but Judge Goldstone is an obvious victim. The general public atleast have long become wise to such Zionist tactics and they are losing their effectiveness with the public.

Britain opposes call to retract Goldstone Report

By JONNY PAUL, JPOST CORRESPONDENT
04/05/2011 12:55

Foreign Office: Judge did not seek such move or elaborate on other allegations, ‘which we believe require serious follow-up by parties.’


LONDON – The British government said on Monday that it does not support calls for a retraction of the Goldstone Report after its lead author distanced himself from the report’s main allegations.

In an opinion piece in Friday’s Washington Post, Judge Richard Goldstone indicated that Israel had not deliberately targeted civilians or committed war crimes during Operation Cast Lead two winters ago.

RELATED:
Editorial: Goldstone’s example
Ya’alon urges UN to retract Goldstone Report

“Justice Goldstone has not made such a call [to retract the report], and he has not elaborated on his views surrounding the various other allegations contained in the report, allegations which we firmly believe require serious follow- up by the parties to the conflict,” a Foreign Office spokesman toldThe Jerusalem Post on Monday night.

The British government said that while Goldstone’s acknowledgment was important, his was not the only report on the 22-day conflict.

“Allegations of breaches of International Humanitarian Law made against all parties to the Gaza conflict are not limited to the Goldstone Report and have arisen from certain other credible organizations. We firmly believe that any and all such allegations must be met with credible and independent investigations by the parties to the conflict,” the spokesman said.

GOLDSTONE FACT FINDING IN GAZA

Responding to Goldstone’s claim that if he’d “known then what I know now, the Goldstone Report would have been a different document,” the spokesman said it was the report that set up a process that allowed for clarity and accountability into the conflict.

“Justice Goldstone makes clear in his recent comments that the Goldstone Report would have looked differently if it had been produced now, on the basis of fresh evidence released by a committee of independent experts, tasked to follow-up on the Goldstone Report. This latest insight into the events surrounding the Gaza conflict have come about because of the process that was set in train by his fact-finding mission.”

The Foreign Office spokesman pointed out that other than conceding that Israel had not targeted civilians deliberately, Goldstone did not elaborate on other allegations; hence Britain’s belief that these allegations be investigated independently.

“This is absolutely consistent with our longstanding policy calling for independent investigations,” he said. “Justice Goldstone does not elaborate on his views on the various other allegations made against Israel in his report and does not call for its retraction. We continue to believe that it is important these allegations are investigated independently.”

The Board of Deputies of British Jews welcomed Goldstone’s recantation, saying it accorded with the conclusions of Col. Richard Kemp, a former commander of British forces in Afghanistan, concerning IDF measures to avoid civilian casualties “even though Hamas was at the same time deliberately putting civilians in harm’s way.”

The Board added that Goldstone’s op-ed piece “reinforces Israel’s right to self-defense” and notes that “Israel, like any sovereign nation, has the right and obligation to defend itself and its citizens against attacks from abroad and within…. We would call on those who were so quick to use the report as a stick to beat Israel, now to acknowledge publicly that they were mistaken.”

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What’s also  interesting is Israel’s hysterical campaign to get the report rescinded… on top of threatening the UN with “countermeasures” if they recognize an independent Palestinian state.  (Hamas: Goldstone does not own UN report )

I am holding out no strong hopes that there are any “politicians” in Britain who have the guts or spine to stand up against Zionism.  And, whether the Report is or is not rescinded or retracted, officially or not, the Report and its facts have been put before the public, and nothing will change that… the “facts” and findings will stand in the public eye as the public eye perceives them, and official hokey pokey in the Höchchambers UN or any other sovereign chambers will have little to do with public opinion, for those places have lost all credibility with the general public, and only serve as faux authenticators of lies and trash, with francs and sanctions for sale or grant under intimidation, blackmail and bribe.

 

Also see:

ILAN PAPPE : UN Gaza Report — Goldstone’s shameful U-turn

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The U.S. doesn’t have to justify its double standards to anyone: Joshua Frank

NOVANEWS

 



 

Interview by Kourosh Ziabari

Joshua Frank is an American progressive journalist and noted anti-war columnist. His articles and commentaries have appeared on CounterPunch, Z Magazine, AntiWar.com, Truthout and Alternet. He is author of “Left Out! How Liberals Helped Reelect George W. Bush” and co-editor with Jeffrey St. Clair of Red State Rebels: Tales of Grassroots Resistance in the Heartland.

Joshua took part in an interview with me to discuss the latest developments in the Middle East region, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the prospect of Israel-U.S. relations, the recent controversy over the Freedom Flotilla attack and the mainstream media’s propaganda against Iran. Here is the complete text of our interview.

Kourosh Ziabari: What’s the main reason behind the United States’ unconditional support for the state of Israel? In his early days of assuming office, President Obama failed to address the international community’s concern regarding the Operation Cast Lead in which the Israeli forces killed more than 1,300 Palestinian citizens. Moreover, it seems that the United States has retreated from its stance regarding the ongoing Israeli settlements on the Palestinian lands. Why is the relationship between the United States and Israel so profound that makes Israel immune to international law? Why is the United States always “committed” to the security of Israel?

Joshua Frank: I believe that the U.S.’s seemingly unconditional support of Israel is a complicated, multifaceted issue. First and foremost, Israel is a strategic ally for the U.S. interests in the region. As you know, there aren’t many countries in the Middle East that support the United States’ military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, nor do many countries see much of the benefit of the U.S. companies’ profiting from their imperial resource extraction ventures. So Israel plays a powerful role in supporting the U.S. in these endeavors, if not directly, then at least politically and tactically. Military-wise, Israel is the most powerful country in the area, with a large nuclear cache and airports the serve the U.S. military uses often for its endeavors. After the Camp David Accords the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers actually helped construct Israeli Air Bases in the Negev Desert.

Likewise, Israel needs the U.S. to support its illegal occupation of Palestinian territories. Without U.S. backing, the Israel government could not afford its ongoing military forays. Indeed, the U.S. also plays a substantial role in deflecting criticism of Israel’s ongoing human rights violations, whether by flexing muscle on the UN Security Council or in the court of public opinion. Israel can most often rely on the U.S. to support its actions, illegal or otherwise, be they the invasion on Lebanon or the recent Flotilla attack. A lot of critics of Israel point their finger solely at the pro-Israeli lobby in the U.S. as the primary reason behind the U.S. close relationship to Israel. While the lobby is certainly strong, the U.S. Empire is stronger, and in fact I would argue, actually uses the Israel lobby to its benefit. It’s a symbiotic relationship, and not entirely one-sided as many Zionist-conspiracy theorists seem to argue.

KZ: Israel possesses up to 200 nuclear warheads and this figure is confirmed by a number of international organizations, including the Federation of American Scientists; however, it’s Iran which is being pressured over its nuclear program. How do the United States and its European allies justify their double standards regarding Iran’s nuclear program? There’s no proof that Iran has moved towards building nuclear weapons, but everybody knows that the Israeli nuclear technician Mordecai Vanunu has released the evidences which indicate that Israel has accumulated a number of nuclear bombs in its arsenal. What’s your idea?

JF: I think you sort of answered your own question. The U.S. doesn’t have to justify their double standards to anyone, especially not the international community. It’s also about how the western world views itself, that our actions are always genuine and justified. Through this distorted lens Israel can view itself as the victim and not the perpetrator. So whereas Iran’s alleged nuclear program, real or mythical, is seen as a threat, Israel’s existing arsenal that could detonate the entire Middle East is for peace of mind, because you just never know when those darn Arabs will attack for no reason at all!

It may sound ridiculous, sure, but there are many people who follow this line of thinking. Of course, they can blame it on militant strains of Islam, which certainly has its problems, but by and large the outrage directed toward Israel is cross-sectional because so many of the country’s policies are overtly arrogant. Of course, even within the country you have plenty of lively dissent, much of which does not get its due attention in the mainstream press. Vanunu is one historical figure example of this movement, a movement that is growing by the day.

KZ: Iran is under the spates of black propaganda by the western mainstream media. The western media depict Iranian nation as a backward, uncivilized and extremist people. How is it possible to acquaint the western public with the unseen and concealed realities of Iran?

JF: I think the new media is already breaking through this propaganda very effectively. I also believe there are plenty of people in western countries that know governments don’t always represent the interests of the masses. The Iranian government is reckless to be sure, but that doesn’t mean all Iranians agree with every single policy; same story for voting Jews that live in Israel. It is naiive to think all Jews support the occupation of Palestine. Many do of course, but there are many that also believe it is illegal, unjust and counterproductive to achieving peace in the region.

The bigger issue is that Westerners are consistently inundated with misinformation. The U.S. government for example, has to continually sedate its citizens into compliance. It’s brilliantly executed time and again and it’s the reason why the antiwar movement, for instance, is virtually non-existent in this country at the moment. Even those that oppose the escalation of war in Afghanistan are by and large silent. That wasn’t the case during the Bush era, where a surge in troop levels combined failure of an exit strategy would have forced tens of thousands into the streets. But since liberals and progressives now have their liberal Obama, mums the word. They’ve been scared into complacency by the propaganda of “change” and “hope”. They are literally afraid to resist the man they worked to hard to elect. It’s a special kind of trepidation. Meanwhile, the PATRIOT Act gets reaffirmed, billions more is passed for war funding and U.S. soldiers continue to die in two endless, directionless wars.

KZ: It seems that whoever wants to rise to prominence as a potential choice for presidency in the United States should avow his commitment to the security and stability of Israel, even at the cost of killing thousands of people or destructing the other countries. As you quoted him in one of your articles, Barack Obama had told a crowd of pro-Israeli Americans that he would never put the military option off the table concerning Iran’s nuclear program. My question is that, is the Israeli lobby so powerful and influential in the United States that even determines the destiny of White House?

JF: It’s bigger than that, I think. Like I said, it’s not the lobby that determines the destiny of the White House, it is the Empire apparatus that does. For example, Obama, had he challenged U.S. imperialism during his campaign and tenure in the Senate, would never have been supported by the arms industry, the oil companies and the like. The Israel lobby is just one of these major forces and shouldn’t be viewed in isolation. The energy cartels, I think, have just as much or even more sway over the administration, as the catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico so boldly symbolizes. Same goes for the corporate GM food giants, the pharmaceutical industry, military contractors among others. Ultimately it is about corporate and military domination of public policy and the pro-Israel lobby is one of the big players, but not the only one that holds the US government and the U.S. people hostage.

KZ: Some analysts believe that Israel has paved the ground for its growing isolation by unjustifiably attacking the Freedom Flotilla. As an instance, the government of Nicaragua decided to sever its diplomatic ties with Israel. What’s your estimation? Will the state of Israel succeed in getting through with this pivotal juncture safely?

JF: The Freedom Flotilla was a horrific, bloody episode that will surely be notched up as another military defeat for Israel. Anytime this sort of thing happens, Israel has to work overtime to save face. Previously, and to a greater extent, I think the attack on Lebanon for dubious reasons was also a blemish for Israel power. They ended up having to halt their excursions and bombings because the international community by-and-large believed their actions were not justified.

I think, as Alexander Cockburn and others have pointed out, that this is an example of Israel’s power rapidly dwindling. The fact that Israel felt threatened by a Freedom Flotilla should be enough for anyone to realize that their use of force was not only illegal under international law, but unethical and a sign that they are losing the fight they started. Such bullying acts won’t win Israel many new supporters; it will only harden its militarist admirers.

KZ: Israel’s ambassador to the United States, Michael Oren has called the IDF incursion into the Freedom Flotilla a human and responsible action. He likened the massacre of civilians onboard the Freedom Flotilla to the America’s fight against the Nazi Germany in the Second World War. What do you think about what he has said?

JF: Honestly I don’t think much about it. Military talking heads like Oren are pure vessels of propaganda. They will do whatever they can, soul already sold, to defend Israeli military actions. Internationally such rhetoric is taken at face value: never believe half of what Israel taking heads say — or any other political leaders for that matter — who spout in defense of such brutal actions. If anything, Oren is quite adept at employing the very Nazi propaganda he so despises.

KZ: It’s widely believed that the political regime of Israel will immediately collapse should the White House lift its support to Tel Aviv. Is it possible for Israel to survive without the U.S. backing? Will the influence of Israeli lobby over the corporate government of the United States allow any independent president to rise to power and oppose to Israel ideologically?

JF: Israel would certainly survive without U.S. backing, but in a much more modest capacity. As a supporter of a one state solution, I don’t believe any peace between Palestine and Israel will occur until the U.S. takes a more brokered approach. If Israel makes concessions and the U.S. backs off its monetary support, the international community will ensure that a new Israel, one that is truly democratic and less economically stratified, will survive in its place. I think that the American people would support a candidate that spoke truth to power with regard to Israel. They really haven’t had a chance to do it. Would the lobby accept this? Not likely, but nor would any of the other corporate and military powers that capitalize on American intentions in the Middle East.

KZ: What do you think about the U.S. and UK mainstream media which are said to be controlled by the Zionist owners and media moguls such as Rupert Murdoch? How do these media outlets shape reach-out to their international audiences and shape their opinions?

JF: Biased news and commentary is just that, biased, and plenty of outlets spew gross lies and propaganda. However, the new media is breaking ground every day. Here in the U.S. Glenn Greenwald’s analysis has become widely read, mainly because it’s free and uncensored on the web. As a result of his popularity, he is consistently being interviewed in the mainstream press and on popular cable news programs. This is just one example of alternative views making their way to the public. The freer the media, the more informed the public and the less censorship that ultimately occurs. So I’m hopeful that the Murdochs of the world will continually be challenged by this new reality.

KZ: What’s your prediction for the destiny of Israel in the Middle East? With a U.S. government which offers its unconditional support to Tel Aviv and the EU countries that follow the U.S. trajectory passively, can Israel rescue itself from the growing isolation it’s facing internationally?

JF: Israel will have to make large and significant compromises if it is to survive as a Jewish state. The world is watching their every move very closely. Despite the media blackout and the power of pro-Israel forces, the plight of Palestinians is being exposed daily, not only in other countries, but within Israel itself. Israelis are not all in support of the occupation and do not by any means believe it makes them any safer. On the contrary, it makes them less safe.

The bigger question is, can the U.S. survive in its current state? Can the U.S. continue to exploit the resources and people of the Middle East for its own profit and greed? Can it abuse and exploit its own people for much longer? I don’t believe so. Our economy is crumbing and our military is overextended and local budgets continue to dip into the red. We simply cannot continue to expand U.S. Empire. And when the U.S. Empire falls, Israel’s power and ego will be deflated as well. Again, it’s a symbiotic relationship and intimately intertwined.

Posted in USAComments Off on The U.S. doesn’t have to justify its double standards to anyone: Joshua Frank

Three Short Takes on Afghanistan

NOVANEWS

 

by David Swanson

 

Afghan Women Behind the Wheel

 

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN — I’ve been fortunate to meet some very talented photographers and film-makers here in Afghanistan.  We’re planning an Afghan Film Festival for the United States this fall.

One film director Sahraa Karimi has produced an engaging and illuminating documentary called “Afghan Women Behind the Wheel.”  When she told me the title with a bit of an accent, I thought the last word was “Veil.”  It could almost as well have been.  The film is about the limited rights and options of women in a country that is not just poor and war-ravaged, but in which many men passionately believe women to be inferior.

The movie has great footage for anyone wondering what life in Kabul looks like, and it tells the stories of a number of women who learn to drive.  In a scene that drew laughs from all the Afghans watching it with me, a driving instructor tells them “Another important thing is traffic lights, even though we don’t have any.”  He goes on to explain what red, yellow, and green mean.  I’m told there are a few traffic lights, but I haven’t seen them.

Something else you won’t see much of is women drivers.  The women in the movie are violating a taboo.  When they begin driving, vicious rumors are spread about them, including that they are working!  It’s actually very hard for anyone to find a job in Afghanistan, and driving lessons cost a good percentage of the average annual income.

Some of the women in the movie are in fact working, one in a health clinic, one in a school, and one decides to become a taxi driver.  She describes an unloved childhood and a forced marriage to a man 18 years her senior, a man who abused her.  She enjoys the sport of Kabul driving, not a skill easily learned by anyone.  Her story resembles the others’ — fathers prefer sons, sons inherit property, marriages are forced.

The taxi driver sees driving as the one thing she is able to do, and she is terrified of not being able to afford the gasoline to continue doing it.  She dreams that cars might run on water.  The same woman builds a house herself and loves it, but is afraid that her stepfather next door might hurt her or her children, and so lives in an apartment.  Better times and changes come into her life, which is quite touching and revealing.

I certainly hope to see many more women driving in Afghanistan.  If women are going to lead a movement, as they must, to reject both the U.S. occupation and the Taliban, they cannot remain in the position of children always asking for a ride.

See www.afghanwomenbehindthewheel.com

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Educators in Afghanistan

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN — I joined a delegation of Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers for a meeting with interested professors at a private university in Kabul on Wednesday.

After a presentation from our side, the professors each spoke in turn.  Unlike some previous meetings, there were no real denunciations of the very idea of peace.  But the first professor to speak, the ony woman in the group, explained how horrible the wars of the past 40 years had been, all of which she blamed — reasonably enough — on the United States.  During the civil war, she said, nine groups divided up and fought over Kabul.  Not a living thing could be seen in the streets.  So, people welcomed the Taliban for security even if they had to give up schools.  They were focused on living through the night.  She wanted peace, but would simply not stand for any negotiating with the Taliban.

The next professor spoke of the need for first steps, including education, including the education of young people to love peace, to be part of a culture that manages to make peace with peace.  Thus far, he said, there has been a lot of talk but little effective education.  Books and media that introduce peace are needes, he said.  He also proposed bringing members of different ethnic groups to live in the same neighborhoods, through control of apartment rentals and other means. This strikes me as a very good idea.

The third professor made some of the same points and urged cooperation between civil society groups abroad and in Afghanistan.  And the fourth emphasized the need for love and friendship.  He also recommended using peace music to reach people, and focusing on the development of sports and nonviolent work as alternatives to joining in the fighting.

These are people who know what needs to be done.  They could do it better if we stopped bombing their country for a couple of minutes.

View Original Post


Blood in the Streets of Afghanistan

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN — Afghanistan is full of wonderful people and could be a really terrific place to live. But first my government back home in the United States would have to stop murdering civilians over here.

I can’t join in antiwar rallies over here, where I would be happy to speak against the crimes of my own government, because it’s not considered safe for foreigners, especially Americans, to go near such scenes. Why? Well, imagine if this were happening in the United States and a citizen of the nation responsible were to come visiting:

definite pattern has been established of killing civilians from the air and on the ground.

The United States has made clear its intention to continue and escalate this behavior.

On the first of March two U.S. helicopters hunted down and slaughtered, one-by-one, nine young boys gathering firewood.

Recently released photographs show U.S. soldiers posing with the corpses of people they’ve killed for sport.

Just this Monday troops reportedly killed an innocent shopkeeper.

On Tuesday, a raid killed six.

On Wednesday a convoy ran over three.

Elsewhere, soldiers ran two over and shot a third on Wednesday.

Dear Afghanistan, I would love to stay and apologize, but I must be going. I hope to see you in better times, to drink your tea, ski your mountains, and marvel at your people in a future era of peace, Inshallah.

Posted in Pakistan & KashmirComments Off on Three Short Takes on Afghanistan

Egyptians are Back in Tahrir Square to Block a Counter Revolution

NOVANEWS

 

Posted by: Sammi Ibrahem
Chair of West Midland PSC

 

“To every action there is always opposed an equal reaction
And to every revolution there is often plotted a counter revolution…”

“Day by day, things began to go back to the way it used to be as if the uprising never happened in the first place. Mubarak’s inner circle of aids and strong officials in the government and the national Democratic Party (NDP) were still on the loose with millions of dollars worth of liquid money and property stolen from the country and decades of political crimes unaccounted for. Mubarak himself has not been put on trial yet despite the billions he has stolen and the atrocities he has committed.”

DR. Ashraf Ezzat / Veterans today

Secular Egyptian youths sparked the uprising

The world still recalls those thousands of Egyptians protesting in Tahrir square at the heart of Cairo in one of the most inspiring scenes of the human quest for freedom and democracy in modern times.

It was wonderful to watch those magical moments where power of the people powerfully came into effect, but for some it was equally worrying as they contemplated on what would come next.
The West has expressed serious concerns about the probability of Islamists rising to power. Those were legitimate concerns, since the threat and fear of Islamists has been the phobia haunting the west since 9/11 – the greatest false flag operations of all time.

And as the thousands of enthusiastic and secular youths were chanting “freedom, democracy and social justice”all over Egypt, other scenarios were being plotted behind closed doors as a counterblow to this uprising.
For decades the Arab countries have been ruled by dictators who never allowed any room for dissent, there was no political parties and no truly functioning civil society. The only place people could freely express their dissatisfaction with the corrupt government and the autocratic rule was the mosque. And that was a grave mistake for that only allowed Muslim clerics – sheikhs – to practice politics.
With the undergoing popular uprisings in the Arab world politics has returned to the place where it originally started off, namely the street.
But Before the Arab spring come to an end, Could we interpret those Arab uprisings as historical moments of enlightenment? Moreover, could we detect any possible signs of attempt to separate the mosque from the state in the Arab world? Or is it the dawn of the political Islam in the Arab world?

Islamization of politics

Islamists, emboldened by the Egyptian uprising, aspiring for political power.

“Islam is a religion and a way of life; it is a spiritual creed and a daily practice”

This is how Islam is interpreted and strongly advocated by the Muslim clergy in the Arab/Muslim world.
Building on that universal and all inclusive-concept of Islam Muslim fundamentalists and theologians began to espouse theislamization, so to speak, of almost all human worldly activities. So we began to ironically hear of Islamic banks and economy, Islamic wardrobe and costumes especially for females, Islamic medicine and of course and above all the Islamic state.
Failing to discern the difference between a distinct science such as medicine and religion can tell you a lot about the poor mentality behind reconciling the irreconcilable and Painting all life’s landscape with the Islam’s monochrome brush.
And if this tribal and totally unscientific Islamic medicine could not be entrusted to deal with the arduous task of curing the pathology of modern-day diseases what does that say of the emerging groups of Islamists, who are gearing up for taking over the rule in Egypt and most of the Arab countries -which lately witnessed popular uprisings- holding up their signs with long reiterated slogan that says “Islam is the solution”
The scenes of those secular young people driving the protests all over the streets of Cairo and other major cities in Egypt have managed to capture the imagination of people all over the world and at the same time gave the impression of a nation crossing the threshold towards a democratic and free civil society.
Those educated and mostly liberal youths who dreamed of a freer and more democratic Egypt and dared to confront the tyranny of a mighty dictatorship never thought they would be paving the way, by ousting Mubarak, for the rise of Islamist groups in the country.
After the thrill of the uprising had gone, after the internet buzz and the TV interviews with the young boys and girls who spent days and nights at Tahrir square had simmered down, after shaking hands with the wounded and paying tribute to those who died in the streets while embracing their dream of a free and proud Egypt and after Tahrir square had been bare and deserted again it was time to say good bye to those glamorous days and those noble aspirations and to get on with the show again.
But now, the youth movement is not the driving force any more on the political stage of Egypt, new powers have emerged and secret deals have been made between the supreme military council (SMC), which is running the show right now as the leadership of the interim government, and the Islamist movements mainly, the Muslim brotherhood and the Salafis.

The counter-revolution

Day by day, things began to go back to the way it used to be as if the uprising never happened in the first place. Mubarak’s inner circle of aids and strong officials in the government and the national Democratic Party (NDP) were still on the loose with millions of dollars worth of liquid money and property stolen from the country and decades of politcal crimes unaccounted for. Mubarak himself has not been put on trial yet despite the billions he has stolen and the atrocities he has committed.

The old regime’s loyalists from NDP and the state security apparatus were plotting out a counter revolution trying to bring about the menaces Mubarak had threatened would prevail in case he stepped down namely, chaos and rise of the Muslim extremists to power.
And in Egypt, what could be more chaotic than a secret love affair between a Muslim and a Christian ….!
Thus, on March 5th, began one of the most dreadful scenarios Egypt ever feared to live, namely the sectarian violence between the Christian minority and the Muslims, as one of the small churches in a remote and small village –Sol Atfih– 30 kilometers from Cairo has been demolished by organized gangs of thugs and who deliberately engaged in an abhorrent clash with Christian protesters over a romantic relation between a Christian man and a Muslim girl. This deliberately preplanned incident has been meant to set the Egyptian society on fire and to blow away the revolutionary tide- a game long mastered by the officers of the state security.

And since the chaos scenario was based on the phobia of Islamists taking over in the country, the used to be banned groups of Muslim Brotherhood (MB) and Salafis began to rise, showing unprecedented public appearances emboldened by the post-uprising political freedom that allowed for criminal murderers of the salafis, like the convicted assassins of the late president Sadat, to be interviewed in lengthy TV Talk shows and given the liberty of elaborating on their sick and extreme view of how to judge and even try to eliminate the head of the state whenever proven nonconformist as far as Islam is concerned.

 

The sectarian strife has been a scenario long anticipated, but what came as a genuine surprise was the leaked information of a secret deal struck between the Muslim Brotherhood and the former vice-president, Omar Soliman, who promised the MB the lift of the ban on the group and a permit to form a political party provided they withdrew from the rallies that were sweeping across the country.

It’s worth mentioning that MB was never the tiding force of the Egyptian uprisings, nevertheless, Mubarak’s regime believed that MB could shift or control its momentum. Knowing that they were deceiving, not only the Mubarak regime but most important the millions of sincere Egyptians in Tahrir square the MB played along with the corrupt regime and agreed to the secret deal. This flagrant act of treason could hardly fit an organization that made its debut as a political party out of moral and religious stance.

In keeping this trend of selectivity bias, the MSC whose head and generals in command have been known for their loyalty to the late regime has appointed a renowned MB member as a chairman of a committee commissioned to make amendments to the previous constitution, thus tailoring the transient constitution according to the perspective of the MB and their agenda.

Moreover, the SMC has announced that the next parliamentary elections will take place in six months, hardly enough time for any new liberal forces to get organized and embark on their electoral campaigns or communicate with the people in tens of constituencies, so leaving only the MB and the remnants of the old NDP prepared to reap the electoral rewards.

Aware of the intentions of the counter revolution, and watching the uprising being hijacked the Egyptian secular youths who sparked this historical parade for freedom that inspired their Arab brethren in Jordan, Syria, Bahrain and Yemen decided it was time they headed once again to Tahrir square in millions to show the military and the Islamists the power of the people who will never give up their right to live in a true and free civil society.
The march to Tahrir square on Friday 1st, April has been called “saving the revolution”. And as expected, the square overflowed with sincere Egyptians trying to revive the revolution and put it on track again. They strongly believe their revolution will not be over until Mubarak and his men are put on trial and a whole new constitution that would allow more freedom and democracy while curbing the president’s authorities is passed and voted for.

Will the youth movement, as it is gaining momentum once again, be able to outweigh the alliance of the counter revolution with the Islamists? Could the liberal groups and the secularists’ join forces and face up to the escalating dark front of MB and the Salafis, or is it too late as the mosque and the state have become inseparable in this part the world?


 

Posted in EgyptComments Off on Egyptians are Back in Tahrir Square to Block a Counter Revolution

CNN’S PIERS MORGAN, RUN OUT OF BRITAIN, SEND HIM BACK!

NOVANEWS


MORGAN, LOOKING AT 9/11

PLEASE BRITAIN, TAKE THE “CNN STINKBOMB” BACK!

FIRED BY MURDOCH FOR ATROCITY PHOTO HOAX

By Gordon Duff

To think former rodeo clown Glenn Beck is looking for work based on imaginary charges of Antisemitism, Beck whose career working for Israeli owned Fox News has been little but war mongering, Neocon talking points and downplaying Bush era criminal acts  is surprising.  Beck is now and always was a useless moron.  Why should the simple fact that he is embarrassing be an issue?  Judge Napolitano, a muzzled but brilliant guy makes up for a dozen Glenn Becks or Rush Limbaughs.

Evil as these trolls are, and the proof of their plotting has been seen in Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Florida, Maine and other states where their cronies have tried to establish National Socialist dictatorships, mini-police states inside the United States,  Piers Morgan goes much further:


YouTube – Veterans Today –

 

Morgan, if anything, is a parrot of Julian Assange.  The agenda?  War with Iran and attacking anyone pushing for an investigation of 9/11.  Their other shared symptoms?  Love of Zionist extremism, hatred for Islam and narcissistic personality disorders.

Who does Morgan work for?  His paychecks say CNN.  We suspect someone else.

Take him back, we don’t want him.  Who needs a blithering incompetent, debunked in his own country, running his private war against the people of the United States?

America has enough problems, every third person is either an illegal alien, a terrorist or a “nutter.”  Morgan is a “nutter.”

———————————-

BBC:  Editor sacked over ‘hoax’ photos

Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan has been sacked after the newspaper conceded photos of British soldiers abusing an Iraqi were fake. In a statement the Mirror said it had fallen victim to a “calculated and malicious hoax” and that it would be “inappropriate” for Morgan to continue.

The Queen’s Lancashire Regiment (QLR) said the Mirror had endangered British troops by running the pictures.

Roger Goodman, of the QLR, said the regiment now felt “vindicated”.

Mr Goodman added: “It is just a great pity it has taken so long… and that so much damage has been done in the meantime.”

“ The Daily Mirror… apologises unreservedly for publishing the pictures and deeply regrets the reputational damage done to the QLR and the Army in Iraq ”

Mirror statement

At a news conference in Preston on Friday afternoon, the regiment demonstrated to reporters aspects of uniform and equipment which it said proved the photographs were fake.

The regiment’s Brigadier Geoff Sheldon said the vehicle featured in the photographs had been located in a Territorial Army base in Lancashire and had never been in Iraq.

He said the QLR’s reputation had been damaged by the Mirror and asked the newspaper to apologise because the evidence they were staged was “overwhelming”.

The Conservatives said they hoped lessons had been learned from the row.

Deputy leader and foreign affairs spokesman, Michael Ancram, said: ”Looking at the facts objectively, this is the right thing for Piers Morgan to have done.

“The photos that were published in the Daily Mirror have done great damage to the reputation of our troops, who are serving under some of the most difficult conditions in Iraq.”

‘Recruiting poster for al-Qaeda’

The photos published in the Mirror on 1 May appeared to show British troops torturing an Iraqi detainee.

In one picture a soldier is seen urinating on a hooded man while in another the hooded man is being hit with a rifle in the groin.

Colonel Black, a former regiment commander of the QLR, said the pictures put lives in danger and acted as a “recruiting poster” for al-Qaeda.

However one of the Mirror’s informants – Soldier C – said there had been abuse in Iraq.

The Territorial Army solider has been questioned by Royal Military Police after talking about his claims to the Daily Mirror.

On ITV’s Tonight With Trevor McDonald he said: “It did go on, it wasn’t all the army, it wasn’t systematic but it did happen.”

Downing Street refused to comment on the issue, saying it was a matter for the Mirror board.

“ This was about the life of British soldiers, and you can’t tough it out when you’re wrong ”

Andrew Neil, former editor of the Sunday Times

The BBC’s Nicholas Witchell said it appeared Piers Morgan remained unrepentant right to the end

“According to one report Mr Morgan refused the demand to apologise, was sacked and immediately escorted from the building,” he said.

Morgan will be replaced on a temporary basis by his deputy, Des Kelly.

The newspaper released a statement saying: “The Daily Mirror published in good faith photographs which it absolutely believed were genuine images of British soldiers abusing an Iraqi prisoner.

“However there is now sufficient evidence to suggest that these pictures are fakes and that the Daily Mirror has been the subject of a calculated and malicious hoax.

“The Daily Mirror therefore apologises unreservedly for publishing the pictures and deeply regrets the reputational damage done to the QLR and the Army in Iraq.

“The paper will continue to cooperate fully with the investigation.

“The board of Trinity Mirror has decided that it would be inappropriate for Piers Morgan to continue in his role as editor of the Daily Mirror and he will therefore be stepping down with immediate effect.”

The Sun newspaper had offered a £50,000 reward for “information about the fake Mirror photos” but withdrew the offer following the sacking of Morgan.

 

Story from BBC NEWS:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/uk_news/politics/3716151.stm

Published: 2004/05/14 22:10:51 GMT

 

Posted in USAComments Off on CNN’S PIERS MORGAN, RUN OUT OF BRITAIN, SEND HIM BACK!

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