Archive | September 20th, 2011

Nazi Racist Rabbi Lior: Arabs are ‘evil camel riders’

How Israeli discourse of hate does not get any notice in West

Rabbi Lior: Arabs are ‘evil camel riders’: The rabbi referred to the Arabs as “wolves”, adding: “What we have with those villains and savages is not peace, and it won’t be peace. It’s against their nature. They hate peace.”  He called Israel should be cleared of Arabs, who should be given a right of return to places like Saudi Arabia. “The Land of Israel belongs to the people of Israel only,” he ruled.

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Kiryat Arba rabbi says Israel’s international isolation, hatred of Jews worldwide are punishment for demolition of three houses in Migron outpost

Kobi Nahshoni

 expelled from Turkey, and the Egyptians were next and later the Jordanians,” the prominent right-wing rabbi stated. “The waves of anti-Semitism in Europe are a punishment for this as well.”

According to Lior, every time Israel tries to “please the villain,” its status in the world suffers

He went on to slam the Israeli Left. “There are circles of villains seeking to give away parts of this land to our enemies. Luckily, God Almighty causes the camel riders to refuse to meet with the government…

“There are leftists fighting the people of Israel’s return to their land… They have put the public to sleep with opium of peace… The Hollywood culture and singing in discotheques will not do good, but bad.”

The rabbi referred to the Arabs as “wolves”, adding: “What we have with those villains and savages is not peace, and it won’t be peace. It’s against their nature. They hate peace.”

He called Israel should be cleared of Arabs, who should be given a right of return to places like Saudi Arabia. “The Land of Israel belongs to the people of Israel only,” he ruled.

Migron, Lior said, is not an occupied area, neither according to international law nor according to the Torah. If it is indeed an occupied area, he argued, then so is the village of Sheikh Munis (where northern Tel Aviv is located).

According to Rabbi Lior, the people of Israel benefit from the recent events in the Middle East because “everything happens for a reason.” He noted that thanks to “the hooligans’ riots in Libya, Egypt and Yemen” and the West’s involvement in places like Iraq, Israel can “move a tank” in Judea and Samaria.

‘Deeply shocked’ by destruction

Some 20 Religious Zionism rabbis, some of them prominent, took part in the Migron conference, which was held by two rabbinical organizations – Derech Emunah and the Teaching House for Public Affairs.

Rabbi Haim Drukman cried out against the “rules of Sodom” and the injustice in removing families from their homes in the middle of the night because of a “property error”.

Rabbi Zalman Melamed called on the religious public to join forces – first among the rabbis and then among the public and its representatives in the Knesset – in order to thwart the further destruction of communities and continue their construction.

At the end of the rally, the rabbis issued a “public call” to annex Judea and Samaria to the State of Israel and apply the Israeli law to the area.


The participants expressed their “deep shock” over the demolition of houses in Migron, claiming that the residents were not given a real chance to prove the legitimacy of the construction to the Supreme Court.

They also called on the justice minister to prosecute anyone “who in his eagerness to destroy, deviated from the appropriate procedures in a normal country.”

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SAUDI ARABIA KINGDAM OF DEATH

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SAUDI ARABIA EXECUTES MAN CONVICTED OF “SORCERY”

Saudi Arabia’s government should establish an immediate moratorium on executions in the kingdom, Amnesty International said today after a Sudanese man convicted of “sorcery” was put to death.

Abdul Hamid bin Hussain bin Moustafa al-Fakki was beheaded in Madina on Monday. Saudi Arabia has now executed 44 people this year. Eleven were foreign nationals.

“Abdul Hamid’s execution is appalling as is Saudi Arabia’s continuing use of this most cruel and extreme penalty,” said Malcolm Smart, Amnesty International’s Director for the Middle East and North Africa.

“That he should have been executed without having committed anything that would appear to constitute a crime is yet another deeply upsetting example of why the Saudi Arabian government should immediately cease executions and take steps to abolish the death penalty.”

The crime of “sorcery” is not defined in Saudi Arabian law but it has been used to punish people for the legitimate exercise of their human rights, including their right to freedom of expression.

Abdul Hamid bin Hussain bin Moustafa al-Fakki was arrested in 2005 after he was entrapped by a man working for the Mutawa’een (religious police) who asked him to produce a spell that would lead to the man’s father leaving his second wife.

It was alleged that Abdul Hamid said he would do this in exchange for 6,000 Saudi Arabian riyals (approximately US$1,600).

Reportedly beaten after his arrest, Abdul Hamid is believed to have been coerced to confess to carrying out acts of sorcery.

He was sentenced to death by the General Court in Madina in March 2007. Few details are available about his trial but he is reported to have been tried behind closed doors and without legal representation.

Amnesty International campaigned on Abdul Hamid’s behalf following his arrest and had urged Saudi Arabia’s King ‘Abdullah to prevent his execution.

Since the end of the holy month of Ramadan a few weeks ago, the Saudi Arabian authorities  have resumed executions at an alarming pace.

Seven people are known to have been put to death since executions resumed on 5 September, bringing the total executed so far this year to at least 44. In 2010 a total of 27 people were executed.

Two weeks ago Syrian national, Karim Ruslan Al-Ruslan was executed in the Jouf Region for smuggling drugs into the kingdom.

Around 140 prisoners are believed to be facing the death penalty in Saudi Arabia.

Last December, Saudi Arabia was one of a minority of states that voted against a UN general assembly resolution calling for the worldwide moratorium on executions.

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Al-Jazeera Top Officials Resign for fabricating news on Syria

SANA fabricates news for the regime

“Director-General of al-Jazeera Satellite Channel, Waddah Khanfar, resigned on Tuesday after he was found directly in contact with the US intelligence as well as fabricating news on the events in Syria, Yemen and Libya.  Moreover, Director of al-Jazeera Mubasher Channel, Aiman Jaballah, was fired because he took part in escalating the situation in Egypt, and the Channel’s office in Cairo was closed.”

DOHA, (SANA) – Director-General of al-Jazeera Satellite Channel, Waddah Khanfar, resigned on Tuesday after he was found directly in contact with the US intelligence as well as fabricating news on the events in Syria, Yemen and Libya.

Moreover, Director of al-Jazeera Mubasher Channel, Aiman Jaballah, was fired because he took part in escalating the situation in Egypt, and the Channel’s office in Cairo was closed.

F.allafi/M.Eyon


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Bronner speech at Duke reveals deep bias and yet another ethical lapse

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by ADAM HOROWITZ

Last week we posted on Max Blumenthal’s important investigative piece on the New York Times Bureau Chief Ethan Bronner’s connection to Lone Star Communications, an Israeli PR firm run by the West Bank settler Charley Levine. You can see Lone Star’s promotional material for Bronner here (PDF), where he was promoted through its speakers bureau. One topic Bronner speaks on is “When the Bible Belongs on Page One: Archeological Breakthroughs in Israel,” which caught my eye in light of a story Blumenthal tells in his piece:

In 2008, in an excavation in the Israeli town of Khirbet Qeiyafa, near what was said to be the valley where David battled Goliath, an archaeology professor from Hebrew University named Yosef Garfinkel found a shard of pottery that contained what appeared to have been the oldest Hebrew text ever discovered. Garfinkel believed the artifact offered evidence of a kingdom ruled by King David more than 3,000 years ago. Such a find could be used to boost claims that an ancient empire established the historical precedent for the present day Jewish state, though archeologists differ on their interpretations of what Garfinkel found.

Garfinkel asked two of Israel’s most avid archaeology enthusiasts, David Willner and Barnea Selavan, to start a fundraising operation that would allow the completion of the dig. Willner is a settler from the West Bank who hosts a popular archaeology radio show and Barnea Selavan had previously worked as a public relations hand for the Jerusalem Reclamation Project, an organization dedicated to settling religious nationalist Jews in Arab neighborhoods in Jerusalem. Willner and Selavan turned to Lone Star, a Jerusalem-based Israeli public relations firm founded and directed by Charley Levine, a well-connected Israeli media adviser.

Lone Star in turn arranged an exclusive tour for Bronner. “The feeling was the Times was the most serious periodical who could run the story who could generate serious publicity and generate fundraising from the get-go,” Willner said. “And so the feeling was that if it was a New York Times story, it was worth its weight in gold.” Bronner published an October 30, 2008 feature in the Times that examined the historical and political controversies surrounding the dig.

Blumenthal uses the story to demonstrate how Bronner reported on stories about Lone Star clients without disclosing his own business relationship to the firm, which violates the Times ethics policy. It ends up the article in question wasn’t the only place Bronner pushed Lone Star’s Khirbet Qeiyafa story. In April, 2009 Bronner spoke at a Duke University Center for Jewish Studies conference called “Archeology, Politics and the Media” where he discussed Khirbet Qeiyafa, but also displayed a deep bias which should raise additional questions for the New York Times.

Here is how Bronner described the Khirbet Qeiyafa story to the Duke audience (Audio recordings of the conference are archived here and on iTunes. The following appears at 12:28 on the recording):

I got a call about this story from a guy, who is a sort of, who’s a PR guy, who specializes in right-of-center stuff, shall we say. And the reason he called me is because the people who were ending up funding this dig are not Elad [for more on Elad see here], but Elad light. And so anyway he called me and he said we thinking of (unclear) and so we worked it out and the truth is is that it did seem like a quite a serious thing and Yossi Garfinkel seemed like a great and serious person to me and I spent a long time on it and I’ll just tell you that story very quickly.

Bronner doesn’t mention that he is represented by the same “PR guy,” and it’s clear he understands that his role is to help fund raise for their project:

Why does Yossi, why do they want me to put this in the New York Times? Foundation Stone, Elad light, an organization whose website you can go to, is helping to fund it. They don’t have a Moskowitz in their back pocket, that Elad has, they go out and raise the money. These are modern orthodox, Zionists, Americans, who live in Israel. A guy called David Willner who is from LA, and he lives in Efrat, which is a West Bank settlement by most of our standards, although it’s in Gush Etzion, you know one of the less “setterly” settlements if you like, but nonetheless. And he was the trip, my first visit to the site, and the point of the group is to strengthen the tie of the Jewish people to the land. The website says it is, Foundation Stone is redrawing the map in Jewish education and that it’s activities are anchoring traditional texts to the artifacts, maps and locations that form the context for Jewish identity.”

Dr. Eric Meyers, the organizer of the conference, says that Lone Star did not arrange for Bronner to speak at the conference (Meyers reached out to him himself), but confirmed that Bronner’s speaking fee was paid to Lone Star.

It seems one point of Bronner’s story at the Duke conference was to demonstrate how archeology is used as political tool in Israel, and to show how some archeologists become implicated in efforts to confirm nationalist narratives of history. Bronner sees a possible conflict of interest in this and ironically warned the archeologists in attendance about taking money from people with an agenda. He says, “that is certainly something for you guys to think about.”

It would be convenient to see Bronner’s relationship to Lone Star in a similar light, an unwilling dupe to Charley Levine’s right-wing agenda, but the rest of his remarks at Duke reveal a deep antipathy to the Palestinian people and apparent bias in how he explains the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. While he tries to soft step the Israeli settlers’ project above (“less ‘setterly’ settlements”), he comes down hard on the Palestinians, questioning their claims and basically blaming them for Israeli intransigence.

He takes the Palestinians to task for attempting to use archeology to further their own nationalist agenda, and says that he believes that Palestinian rejection of Israeli archeological claims is what is driving the Israeli focus on Jerusalem. He says, “As one-sided and single-focused as the Israeli and Jewish approach to archeology is, the truth is that the Palestinian approach to archeology is really problematic. Really problematic. And I believe it has really made the problem much worse on the Israeli side.”

Moving on from archeology, Bronner goes on attack and belittle Palestinian political demands. He recounts a story with Saeb Erakat and finds it amazing that Erakat would demand that Israeli settlers in East Jerusalem be treated like Israeli settlers in the rest of the West Bank as part of an effort the make the city the capital of a future Palestinian state.  He doesn’t understand why Israeli settlers would have to be uprooted from Jerusalem given that “these neighborhoods have been annexed to Jerusalem for so long.” He then implies that it is important for Israel to retain control over Jerusalem, because if it were left to the Palestinians no Jewish history would be “dug up or highlighted.”

In the end, he sees the conflict as a fight between two sides, which Israel is winning in part to combat Palestinian rejectionism:

“It’s not just the story of an occupying power enforcing its will on a population, that would otherwise be sharing about it all, it’s a story about which side is dominant, and therefore in a position to impose its view on the history of the place. And one problem with all the criticism of Israel’s position from archeologists and from the European Union is that if fails to acknowledge how the Palestinians have acted over the decades and how that has effected the Israeli authorities. You know, to be told you have no roots there, for Jews to be told that, obviously Arafat used to say that all the time, is galling and it makes these Israelis dig their heels in as well as their shovels.”

To finish it off he goes on to say that most of the Palestinian building in Silwan is illegal, and questions that truth behind Palestinian claims that building permits are difficult to get.

While it does seem that Bronner is attempting to play devil’s advocate to a crowd that was critical of Israel’s attempts to steal Palestinian land under the guise of archeology (imagine that!),  this speech does give more context to Bronner’s relationship to Charley Levine and Lone Star Communications. Blumenthal writes, “Bronner says he does not share what he described as ‘Charley Levine’s rightist politics,'” but this speech would seem to indicate they may agree on quite a bit. As so Bronner’s relationship to Lone Star does not only reflect a deep conflict of interest for the Times, but yet another case of his pro-Israel bias.

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Hugh Grant explains what should happen to media bastardry in Britain

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Saudi Arabian stability

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Saudi Arabia continues to spend the money it bilks from Western taxpayers under the political cover of Middle Eastern “instability” created by Israeli war-mongering and regional chaos-sowing to stabilize the oppression of Palestinians and to indirectly fund the occupation-administering PA: “Palestinian Prime Minister, Dr. Salaam Fayyad, stated that he received a phone call on Monday evening from the Saudi Finance Minister, Dr. Ibrahim Al Assaf, informing him that the Saudi king, Abdullah bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, issued orders to transfer $200 Million to the P.A…..Riyadh is the biggest financial supporter to the P.A. and the Palestinian Liberation Organization, and even to nongovernmental charity organizations in Palestine.” Maxime Rodinson writes:

“The constant factors in Saudi politics are a vigilant conservatism more or less aware of the necessity for a minimum of reforms, the American alliance, and hostility to the revolutionary movements gaining ground elsewhere in the Arab world…Israel is only of secondary interest to the Saudi monarchs…Their heart is Arab, no doubt; but their purse is American.”

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Kashmir: Trilateral Perspective

NOVANEWS
 by  

Indian authorities believe that if Pakistan were to leave alone the resistance in Kashmir, the struggle for emancipation would die its own natural death. Such an argument falls short of logic on the ground that no freedom struggle could sustain itself solely on foreign sponsorship for so long.

By Sobia Hanif

While unchecked and unrestrained human rights violations take place in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) on almost a day to day basis, India continues to show its characteristic indifference towards the deteriorating situation of the valley. A report highlighting human rights violations in Kashmir was released by Independent People’s Tribunal on September 8, 2010. The tribunal was headed by Justice H. Suresh. The tribunal acknowledged, “There is no denying the fact that the people of the state have borne the brunt of extreme violence of the past twenty years, all in the name of security, at the hands of armed forces.”1

Despite glaring facts depicting discontentment with Indian rule in IOK, India chooses to look the other way  and prefers to engage in a blame game against Pakistan, accusing its military and intelligence agencies of sponsoring ‘cross-border terrorism’, thereby ignoring the root causes of the indigenous freedom struggle. Such an approach has a two-fold purpose: Firstly to malign the Pakistan army and its intelligence agencies and secondly to undermine the nature of the freedom movement in Kashmir. “Indian hawks, on their part, entertain the idea of converting Pakistan into a pliable state by isolating its army”2.

Indian authorities believe that if Pakistan were to leave alone the resistance in Kashmir, the struggle for emancipation would die its own natural death. Such an argument falls short of logic on the ground that no freedom struggle could sustain itself solely on foreign sponsorship for so long.

On the contrary, “Indians believe that, far from exploiting the Kashmiris, India has bent over trying to help them”.3 Indian authorities have lately announced substantial financial packages for the troubled region in order to influence public opinion in their own favour. “The discontended in Kashmir see the matter differently. They argue that little of the money has reached the masses in the state, who remain very poor even by Indian standards. Moreover, in their view, the basic issue is not economic but political.”4 As such, majority of Kashmiris have outrightedly rejected such moves terming them as tactics to bribe advocates of freedom.

India has always tried to portray the situation in Kashmir as an internal disturbance to the outside world which can be settled with better administration. However, it is now an established fact that the more active phase of the freedom movement which began in the 1990’s reached its apex in 2010, when over a hundred Kashmiri civilians were killed by Indian armed forces, raising alarms throughout the world. Furthermore, the shocking discovery of mass graves of more than 2000 Kashmiri’s have further hollowed out Indian’s proclaimed stance.5 Under the embarrassment of having its cover blown, the Indian authorities have decided to hold inquiries in all such incidents. This is India’s way of placing a lid over a pot of boiling water and expecting it to cool off by itself.

Pakistan, for its part has made sincere efforts for the resolution of the issue on all fronts. “Pakistan’s record in terms of cooperation with the UN is much more impressive than that of India. At almost all stages, Pakistan demonstrated strong faith in the world body’s abilities to resolve such disputes and extended all sorts of cooperation”6

In response to Indian accusations of sponsoring cross-border terrorism, Pakistan has repeatedly denied such charges by stating that it offers the Kahmiri people moral, diplomatic and political support in their struggle for their self determination. Furthermore, Pakistan differentiates between freedom fighters and terrorists.7 While the aim of the former is to engage in a quest for their basic rights, the latter use coercive means to justify their evil machinations.

In accordance with its previous efforts, Pakistan yet again displayed marked flexibility when former President Pervaiz Musharraf “expressed his willingness to go beyond the U.N resolutions and not press for a plebiscite.”8  Since 2001, Pakistan has tried to “seek a solution to the Kashmir problem that is acceptable to India as well as to the people of Kashmir. Such flexibility improves the prospects of resolving the Kashmir problem, provided India is also willing to move away from its traditional position of describing Kashmir as an integral part of its territory”9

An out of the box solution to the dispute was provided by Mr. Pervaiz Musharraf which accorded for freedom of movement for the people of Kashmir, thereby making the border irrelevant, self-governance or autonomy, with drawl of troops from the region and a joint supervision mechanism for Kashmir.10

Ms Hinna Rabbani Khar’s visit to New Delhi in July this year was marked by an Indian uproar when she met APHC chief, Mirwaiz Omer Farooq and assured him of Pakistan’s complete moral, diplomatic and political support on the Kashmir cause.11

Although Pakistan continues to support Kashmiris in their struggle for emancipation, it has been lately pre-occupied with other pressing issues such as rise of terrorism, deteriorating law and order situation and a volatile economy. As such it has not been as active recently in promoting the Kashmir cause. This is in direct accordance with the Indian desire of keeping Pakistan engaged in domestic troubles so that its focus is shifted away from highlighting the precarious situation in IOK.

Kashmiris, being the main sufferers in this dispute have always demanded an end to Indian atrocities against the civilians. Following its traditional ways, separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, Shabir Shah and Muhammad Nayeem Khan were placed under house arrest in Srinagar city in August this year in order to dissuade them from protesting against Indian rule.12 Although a number of political parties have emerged on the political front in IOK with somewhat different ideologies, “they are agreed, however that no solution to the Kashmir problem is possible unless greater autonomy is conferred upon the state. This is resisted byNew Delhi on the reasoning that according greater autonomy to IOK would lead to secessionist demands in other Indiana states”.13 Kashmiris also demand a role in the negotiations between India and Pakistan regarding the future of Kashmir. Pakistan’s ex-foreign minister Khursheed Mahmud Kasuri noted that “It is very obvious that India and Pakistan are necessary parties to this (Kashmir) dispute. Pakistan cannott solve this issue by ignoring India. Similarly, India should not think that it can solve the Kashmir issue by bypassing Pakistan. And both of us should not think that we can solve the issue by bypassing the people of Kashmir.”14

Therefore, India needs to realize that the matter cannot be left in abeyance till perpetuity. Indeed, Kashmir is a nuclear flashpoint and has been aptly termed as “the most dangerous place in the world”15 by former US president Clinton in March 2000.

Hence, without further loss of innocent lives, The world community needs to play an active role in persuading all relevant parties to resolve the issue in a peaceful manner where the desires of the he Kashmiri people are set at the forefront and other modalities between the two nuclear states are dealt with in an amicable manner.

1 Independent People’s Tribunal, Report On Human Rights Violations In Kashmir, September 8, 2010, retrieved from http://www.countercurrents.org/ipt130910.htm, accessed on Sep 17, 2010.

2 Verghese Koithara, Crafting Peace in Kashmir: Through a Realist Lens, (New Delhi: Sage Publications, 2004) pg 101.

3 Ibid, pg .83

4 Ibid

5 Sikander Shaheen , “IHK leaders ask world to wake up”, Nation, August 25, 2011, retrieved from http://nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Politics/25-Aug-2011/IHK-leaders-ask-world-to-wake-up, on September 17, 2011

6 Dr. Pervaiz Iqbal Cheema, “Pakistan’s Kashmir Policy”, Kashmir and South Asian Security, ed. S. M Haider, (Rawalpindi: FRIENDS, 1992) pg. 58.

7 P.R Chari, “ Sources of New Delhi’s Kashmir Policy”, Kashmir: New Voices, New Approaches, ed. Waheguru Pal Singh Sidhu and others, ( New Delhi: Vinod Vashishta, 2007), pg.119

8 Ibid.

9 Hasan-Askari Rizvi, “Islamabad’s New Approach to Kashmir”, Kashmir: New Voices, New Approaches, ed. Waheguru Pal Singh Sidhu and others, (New Delhi: Vinod Vashishta, 2007)   pg.151.

10 Rahul H. Bhonsle, South Asia Security Trends, (New Delhi: Atlantic Publishers, 2007) pg. 115. retrieved from http://books.google.com.pk/books?id=Q4PQ9lfcmnkC&pg=PA154&dq=musharraf’s+four+point+formula+on+kashmir&cd=4#v=onepage&q=musharraf’s%20four%20point%20formula%20on%20kashmir&f=false, accessed on Sep 17,2011.

11 Bilal Bashir Bhat, “Hina Rabbani Khar Assures Mirwaiz of Support on Kashmir”, Only Kashmir,retrieved by http://onlykashmir.blogspot.com/2011/07/hina-rabbani-khar-assures-mirwaiz-of.html, accessed on Sep 17, 2011.

12“Kashmiri separatist leaders put under house arrest”, Pravasitoday, August 11, 2011, retrieved from http://www.pravasitoday.com/kashmiri-separatist-leaders-put-under-house-arrest, accessed on September 18, 2011.

13 P.R Chari, “ Sources of New Delhi’s Kashmir Policy”, Kashmir: New Voices, New Approaches, Ed. Waheguru Pal Singh Sidhu and others, (New Delhi: Vinod Vashishta, 2007)  pg.130.

14 Ibid, pg.119.

15 John Thompson, Kashmir: The Most Dangerous Place in the World, Kashmir: New Voices, New Approaches,  Ed. Waheguru Pal Singh Sidhu and others, (New Delhi: Vinod Vashishta, 2007)  pg.193.

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Afghanistan, US Policies And Our Options

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By Abbas Mehkri

(Translated from Daily Jang)

 

America is going to face the worst ever defeat of its history. If completes, it would be the second biggest after the Vietnam War, which shall be regarded as the superpower’s another unparalleled. Such a big humiliation the American are about to face in Afghanistan at the hands of the Taliban. Washington would run out of options of an honorable exit, if it fails to find out an amicable way out in order to avoid the great embarrassment. The Crusade that the US launched against the Taliban-al-Qaeda after 9/11, the much desired victory has not fallen into its lap in accordance with its plan.

The Taliban proved to be a hard nut to crack for the American policymakers. Now the defeat at the Taliban hands seems to be the writing on the wall. Instead the US realized the realities on ground and formulated strategy to find out a negotiated way out, it is constantly committing blunders, which are not only poised to create problems for Washington, but also to have lasting impacts upon the regional countries, especially Pakistan and Iran.

The rulers in Pakistan and the national security institutions need to keep a watchful eye on the situation unfolding out of the various steps taken by the US in Afghanistan, and take preventive measures to block negative impacts reaching Pakistan. The negative impacts can result into gearing up of the acts of terrorism and violence across the country. America is committing the blunder of holding backdoor negotiations with the Taliban, without involving Pakistan.

Washington plans to pull out allied countries’ troops from Afghanistan by year 2013 and keep 10,000-15,000 Special Forces or Marines present there with their bases in Kabul and Kandahar.Washington plans to wage a covert war against the ‘terrorists’ using the drone strikes and surgical operations. Most of the operations, it is feared, will be conducted within the Pakistani territory. After the recent attack on the NATO headquarters as well as the US embassy in Kabul, Leon Panetta, the US defense secretary, held in his press talk the Haqqani Network (HN) responsible and that “Pakistan has failed to dismantle the network”. He threatened of a unilateral surgical operation against the HN inside Pakistan territory.

If the US continues to using drone strikes or conducts direct incursions into Pakistan territory, then the anti-Americanism will rise in the hearts and minds of the people of Pakistan. The Pakistan government and national security institutions will be left with no option but to respond to the assault on its sovereignty and violations of its territorial integrity. This would not only spoil the Pakistan-US relationship, but also ravage the achievements made so far in the WOT. Consequently the world at large would suffer a lot in terms of benefiting the outcome of WOT, putting further the world peace at stake. Pentagon must be aware that the situation on ground is not conducive for surgical operations, as in Afghanistan and other neighbouring countries, particularly Pakistan and Iran, the hatred for Americans is at its height. China and Russia would also not like the US to linger on the Afghanistan imbroglio for a longer period of time.

The sooner the Americans leave Afghanistan, the better it would be for peace in the region. If America militarily quits Afghanistan, then there is a possibility that a broad-based government is installed in Kabul. If the exit is delayed, then it is obvious that the Taliban would make their comeback possible. They have hardened in their experience of fighting the Americans; they know the Americans have betrayed them many a time after using them against the Soviet Union; they left the Taliban in lurch and turned their guns on them terming the Taliban their enemy. Now the Taliban do not trust anybody, they trust only themselves. If the Taliban gain control of Afghanistan, then the covert war would be difficult for American Special Forces or Marines to continue. This would result in an unprecedented defeat for the Americans, which would cause them the neurosis to differentiate between the friend and foe.

If the Americans want a safe and sound honorable exit from Afghanistan, the region in particular and the world in general becomes safer place, then they must quit Afghanistan immediately. They should follow the policy of consultation, taking all political powers and neighboring countries into confidence, and pave way for a broad-based government in Afghanistan.Washington, instead of keeping the negotiations with the Taliban secret, needs to realize the vitality of Islamabad’s role in bringing peace and normalcy to Afghanistan. The US must not forget that Pakistan is directly affected to whatever happens in Afghanistan, as Pakistan is the party to the dispute. It should not make the mistake of direct unilateral attacks on Pakistan; it has to trust the Pakistan armed forces and their capability to fight. Our armed forces have proved by defeating the inimical forces in the asymmetrical guerilla war.

Such a victory is not even in the credit of the superpower of America. Washington needs to facilitate the armed forces of Pakistan in moving ahead to defeat terrorism keeping in view its own ground realities. Be it the terrorists belonging to  Haqqani Network or any other group, Washington should not pressure Islamabad and instead realize the realities on ground. Nor should it stop the military and economic aid to Pakistan on the pretext of apprehensions or coercive conditions. The country’s armed forces and its people have rendered countless sacrifices in this war. If the Americans fail to comply, then Afghanistan will not only prove to be another Vietnam for them, but also the hydra-headed monster of terrorism will once again
come out to shatter the world peace.

Such a situation is posing grave threat and multiple challenges to Pakistan. It is hoped thatWashington would follow the advice, otherwise if the surgical operations intensify, and under-the-cover violations of Pakistan’s sovereignty are made; it would be construed that the strategic assets of the country would be targeted. The possible takeover of the Taliban in Afghanistan and its impacts on Pakistan would not be ignorable. The closure of US aid may cause economic repercussions in Pakistan, for which Islamabad should get ready.

The US incursions within Pakistan territory will have to be stopped, the strategic assets will have to preserved, Indo-Israel-US intelligence agencies’ activities will have to be countered, the presence and number ofAmerican officials working on various joint missions will have to be reduced to a minimum level; and the headway in the in the war against terrorism will have to be made to an extent where a ‘live and let live’ environment could be created. Now the situation in Afghanistan should not be allowed to affect Pakistan so to stop further destruction. Now the situation should not be seen with an eye of friendship with America, rather it should be seen in the context of greater nationalinterests. (ENDS)

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The Triumph of Capitalism: Jobless Nations

NOVANEWS
By Prof. John Kozy

The Obama administration is intent on applying supply side principles to get the American economy out of the present recession, but supply side principles are based on the belief that if the government cuts taxes on the wealthy, they will invest their savings in new factories, that newly hired workers will increase employment, and that more output will increase tax receipts. But there is no way to make sure the wealthy actually invest their wealth in productive enterprises, especially in the U.S.

This entire theory is based on the mere pop-psychological belief that if you give a person money, s/he will invest it in productive ways. But nothing forces wealthy people to do that, and they haven’t, worse, never really have, since creating jobs is not an essential business function, only making money is, and getting financial incentives from government is merely another way of making money, Giving money to businesses will not end recessions or depressions. In fact, it is likely to prolong them, since businesses will not create jobs until it is evident that those jobs will result in profits.

During the California Gold Rust, merchants went to the camps only after gold was discovered, and they left when the lode petered out. They did not use the capital they acquired from the miners to open productive businesses to provide jobs to the now jobless prospectors. In capitalist economies, capital is not acquired to be spent; it is acquired to be accumulated. Businesses do not exist to create jobs. Jobs are created by businesses only when it suits their purposes.

Beliefs in conventional wisdom are always dangerous. More often than not, conventional wisdom is wrong. But there are two kinds of conventional wisdom—the pro and the con. Every bit on conventional wisdom has its naysayers, and just as conventional wisdom can amount to nothing more than mere beliefs, so can the beliefs of naysayers. For instance, that today’s economy is failing is rather evident, but many critics of it seem to believe that the problems with today’s economy are of recent origin. But that’s false. The economy today is little different in essence than it was is the 1600s when the colonists brought it with them from England. The horrors of England’s 17th Century economy then are exactly its horrors today. Wealth held in the hands of a few and poverty experienced by the many.

High levels of crime infused throughout society. Widespread unemployment, underemployment, and degrading employment. The destruction of human dignity. Homelessness, hunger, and frequent wars fought by common people for the benefit of the merchant class. Prevalent discrimination of various kinds. Government which governs for the wealthy and not for the people in general. And although there have been short-lived periods when the people were led to believe that their prospects were improving, these periods have regularly ended in economic collapses that wiped out any gains the common people had acquired.

The universal features of this economy are exemplified in the following historical vignette.

On January 24, 1848, gold was discovered by James W. Marshall at Sutter’s Mill in Coloma, California.

When people learned about the discovery, hundreds of thousands rushed to California. Wherever gold was discovered, miners collaborated to put up a camp and stake claims. Rough and Ready, Hangtown, and Portuguese Flat, among many others, sprang up, and merchants flocked to them, set up business in hastily built buildings, lean-tos, tents, and anywhere else serviceable to sell everything imaginable. Miners lived in tents, shanties, and deck cabins removed from abandoned ships. Each camp often had its own saloon and gambling house. Women of various ethnicities played various roles including that of prostitute and single entrepreneurs.

At first, the gold was simply “free for the taking.” Disputes were often handled personally and violently. When gold became increasingly difficult to retrieve, Americans began to drive out foreigners. The State Legislature passed a foreign miners tax of twenty dollars per month, and American prospectors began organized attacks on foreigners, particularly Latin Americans and Chinese. In addition, the huge numbers of newcomers drove Native Americans out of their traditional hunting, fishing and gathering areas. Some responded by attacking miners. This provoked counter-attacks. The natives were often slaughtered.

Those who escaped were unable to survive and starved to death. Natives succumbed to smallpox, influenza, and measles in large numbers. The Act for the Government and Protection of Indians, passed by the California Legislature, allowed settlers to capture and use natives as bonded workers and traffic in Native American labor, particularly that of young women and children, which was carried on as a legal business enterprise. Native American villages were regularly raided to supply the demand, and young women and children were carried off to be sold. The toll on the American immigrants could be severe as well: one in twelve forty-niners perished, as the death and crime rates during the Gold Rush were extraordinarily high, and the resulting vigilantism also took its toll.

Hydraulicking as a means of extracting the gold became prevalent. A byproduct of this was that large amounts of gravel, silt, heavy metals, and other pollutants went into streams and rivers. Many areas still bear the scars of hydraulic mining since the resulting exposed earth and downstream gravel deposits are unable to support plant life.

The merchants made far more money than the miners. The wealthiest man in California during the early years of the Gold Rush was Samuel Brannan, the tireless self-promoter, shopkeeper and newspaper publisher. About half the prospectors made a modest profit. Most, however, made little or wound up losing money. By 1855, the economic climate had changed dramatically. Gold could be retrieved profitably from the goldfields only by medium to large groups of workers, either in partnerships or as employees. By the mid-1850s, it was the owners of these gold-mining companies who made the money. When the lode petered-out, the merchants abandoned the sites faster than the miners. The gold rush was over.

I have, in the past, written about many of these horrid features of Capitalist economies, especially its abject immorality. Today I want to discuss an obvious falsehood that still gets repeated especially by right wing politicians and their counterparts in the economics profession and the business community, that is, businesses, not governments, create jobs.

This generic claim is, of course, obviously false and its generality makes it grossly ambiguous. What precisely does it mean, especially since the politicians who utter it spend piles of money and time trying to get jobs that are not created by any business? No business created the jobs of Congressman or President, so what sense does it make for such a person to claim that businesses, not government, creates jobs? The claim is utterly stupid.

In fact, businesses have no interest in creating jobs. Consider the vignette described above. Merchants flocked to the mining camps after gold was discovered and they left when the lode petered out. They did not use the capital they acquired from the miners to open productive businesses to provide jobs to the now jobless prospectors. In capitalist economies, capital is not acquired to be spent; it is acquired to be accumulated. Employees are merely means to that end, and whenever a business can accumulate capital without the use of employees, it will do it. And that is what has happened in large measure in America today. Businesses have found ways of accumulating capital without the need for American employees and government has aided and abetted businesses in doing so.

So, when a politician advocates giving financial incentives to businesses to induce them to create jobs, those politicians are involved in a ludicrous absurdity. All the proposal does is provide businesses with another tool for extracting money from common people without even having to deal with them, and the capital acquired by businesses in this way will merely be added to the capital accumulation bank. Why would a business want to create a job with it and put that capital in jeopardy? To assume that businesses will use that capital to create jobs is the fallacy of supply side economics, which, incidentally, is based on nothing but pop-psychology.

Supply side economics is based on the belief that if the government cuts taxes on the wealthy, they will invest their savings in new factories fitted with new technologies that will produce goods at lower costs, that newly hired workers will increase employment, and that more output will increase tax receipts. The economy will lift itself by its bootstraps. But there is no way to make sure the wealthy actually invest their wealth in productive enterprises, especially in the U.S. This entire theory is based on the mere pop-psychological belief that if you give a person money, s/he will do “the right thing” with it, namely, invest it in productive ways.

But nothing forces wealthy people to do that, and they haven’t, worse, never really have, since creating jobs is not an essential business function, only making money is, and getting financial incentives from government is merely another way of making money, Giving money to businesses will not end recessions or depressions. In fact, it is likely to prolong them, since businesses will not go where money cannot be made, because merchants are attracted to money like flies are attracted to dung. Businesses do not exist to create jobs. Jobs are created by businesses only when it suits their purposes.

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I LOVE HELEN THOMAS!!!

NOVANEWS
GILAD ATZMON

 

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