Archive | October 20th, 2011

GILAD ATZMON ON JEFF RENSE’S RADIO SHOW

NOVANEWS


 

 

Jeff Rense discusses The Wandering Who with Gilad Atzmon- Jewish Identity Politics, Jewish Lobby, AIPAC, CFI, Liam Fox (and his ‘friends’),  Iran, Gilad Shalit, History, temporality and beyond

http://www.rense.com/

 

CLICK HERE FOR GILAD RADIO SHOW

Gilad Atzmon on Jeff Rense’s Radio Show by Gilad Atzmon

 

You can now order The Wandering Who on Amazon.com  or Amazon.co.uk

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ROOTSWORLD REVIEW: RIM BANA & GILAD ATZMON

NOVANEWS

RRootsWorld: Home Page Linkim Banna, Nai Barghouti, Wissam Murad, Jawaher Shofani
A Time to Cry: A Lament Over Jerusalem
Kirkelig Kulturverksted (www.kkv.no)

Gilad Atzmon & the Orient House Ensemble
The Tide Has Changed
World Village (worldvillagemusic.com)

Gilad Atzmon
“The Wandering Who?” (book)
Zero Books

Sheikh Jarrah is not exactly a household name in most corners of the world, but it’s a different story in East Jerusalem. In 1956, displaced Palestinians were offered houses in the neighborhood and told by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency that the titles would be transferred to them after three years’ residency. That promise went unfulfilled.

Israeli settlers have for decades sought to wrest targeted East Jerusalem neighborhoods away from their long-time Arab Israeli inhabitants. In some cases, settlers have been allowed to move into one wing of a house while the long-time Palestinian occupants have been reduced to living in the other, subject to continued harassment by their new neighbors.

Listen
“Al-Quds Everlasting”

In April 2010, in the Palestinian wing of one such divided house, A Time to Cry: A Lament Over Jerusalem was recorded by four gifted Palestinian singers, backed by visiting musicians. Produced under conditions of adversity beyond the practical experience or comprehension of most listeners, there is a discreet sense of self-possession to this work, whose aural beauty conveys the quiet dignity, insistent witness and clear-eyed testimony to a human tragedy now in its fourth generation and seventh decade of struggle for justice. Some may recognize Rim Banna from the album Lullabies from the Axis of Evil: here, her composition “Al-Quds [Jerusalem] Everlasting” conveys the enduring spirit and rending beauty manifest in A Time to Cry:

Nothing is left for the residents of the city
But a few pictures, stories and memories
And the whole world is watching in silence…

A project of the Norwegian Culture Workshop, with support from the World Council of Churches, Norwegian Church Aid and the Edward Said National Conservatory of Music, artistic initiatives like A Time to Cry may constitute little more than an annoying fly buzzing at the margins of the collective Israeli Weltanschauung.

Perhaps more difficult for officialdom to tolerate is the native criticism of Israeli-born artists and activists like London-based saxophonist-composer Gilad Atzmon – also the author of a critical new analysis of Israeli identity politics titled “The Wandering Who?” Pulling no punches, Atzmon describes settler attacks on Palestinians as “a pogrom” and characterizes the prevailing situation as “the Neo Ghetto reality” – provocative language from one of Israel’s own.

I asked the artist about that via email and he responded: “Zionism was an attempt to bring to the world a ‘new civilized Jew’, an authentic human being, a productive subject driven by a love of the soil and an ethical orientation. But the scale of crimes against humanity committed by the Jewish State on a daily basis for more than six decades demonstrates beyond doubt that the Zionist project has been a disaster. The Neo Ghetto society that surrounds itself with an annexation wall may well be the most brutal tribal collective in the history of the Jewish people. And this is indeed a tragedy.”

Elsewhere Gilad writes, “The monstrous wall is a clearly true reflection of the failure of the Jewish national project. The annexation wall is, in fact, a devastating expression of Israeli collective phobia.”

What about his own intellectual and ethical journey vis-à-vis the Zionist project?

Gilad replies, “If I were to sum my journey in a single paragraph, I would say that at a certain stage in my life, I looked into the mirror and didn’t like what I saw. I realized that being an Israeli, I was living on someone else’s land. So I left Israel and settled in Britain. Then I began to grasp the more general ethnocentrism entangled within Jewish identity politics. It didn’t take long before I decided to move as far as I could from Jewish tribal identity, with the hope that one day I might manage to become an ordinary human being devoid of any sense of exceptionalism, or of being ‘chosen’. Israel is becoming more tribal, supremacist and brutal. There is no inclination towards peace there.”

Asked why he is compelled to express what most Israelis refuse to consider, or what they cannot bring themselves to acknowledge, Gilad observes, “I believe that being a musician is part of the answer. I am a free being. I am not dependent on a university salary. I am not subject to the tyranny of the Zionist thought police. Being an artist, I am spiritually driven. I am a truth seeker by nature. And this may also mean saying things that people do not want to hear.”

Gilad observes, “We’re all Palestinians now and we’ve lost our fear.” Regarding the title track of his new CD, The Tide Has Changed, and the composition that follows, “And So Have We,” I asked about the nature of that change. He relates, “For years I was subject to an endless, orchestrated smear campaign. The people behind it were both Zionists and some Jewish ‘anti’ Zionists. They clearly realized that my path might lead to a complete exposé of the devastating continuum between Jewish supremacy, tribalism and the Jewish Left. I didn’t surrender to their pressure. I kept saying what I believed in. And as it happened, my line of thought is now far more widely accepted. The number of people who were willing to stand by my side before the publication of “The Wandering Who” is astonishing [e.g., Richard Falk, Makram Khoury-Machool, John Mearsheimer, James Petras]. Indeed, I guess we lost our fear. We believe that peace is patriotic.”

“One conclusion I draw in my new book is that peace can be achieved in just a few seconds. All it takes is for an Israeli Prime Minister to stand up and apologize to the Palestinians, and to welcome them to return to their land. This would mean an immediate end to violence. It would also be the ultimate success of the Zionist project. It would mean that Jews have managed to settle in their purported ‘promised land’ and to love their neighbors. However, I guess that for Israel to pursue such a simple move, it must first stop being The Jewish State.”

What can we expect next from Gilad Atzmon musically? “Good question. I will soon start a tour with the Orient House Ensemble [named in honor of the national headquarters of the Palestinian people in Jerusalem]. We will be on the road for three months. I imagine we will come out with a new album. The truth is that I have been very busy with the book in recent months, and I just can’t wait to be on the road and play loud and fast.”

“Dry Fear”

The Tide Has Changed offers some sense of the shape of Orient House to come: Brechtian irony (the opening “Dry Fear” and closing “We Laugh”); the mournful, extended sax introduction to the title track, Shofar-like, an 11 minute suite that develops slowly and incessantly into a full-bore figure that doesn’t let go, against a wordless chorus, the percussive keyboard work of Frank Harrison, the loping bass of Yaron Stavi and agitated traps of Eddie Hick. “And So Have We” shifts into reflective mode, with Tali Atzmon on vocal lead, a melancholic expression of the price and inevitability of change. A dashing “All the Way to Montenegro” unleashes a certain Balkan frenzy, while Ravel’s unexpected “Bolero at Sunrise” unfolds in a lyrical interplay between the dawning light from the East and a fitfully awakening West. If the whole world is watching, it is no longer in silence. – Michael Stone

Further information, listening and reading:

Gilad Atzmon speaks about “The Wandering Who?

Hear samples of the tracks from The Tide Has Changed

Atzmon’s web site: www.gilad.co.uk

More about Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity:

Listen to Rim Banna’s “Al-Quds Everlasting

A Time to Cry: A Lament Over Jerusalem available from cdRoots

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SAMEH HABEEB: THE WANDERING WHO, AN ATTEMPT TO CLEAR THE DUST

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Introduction by Gilad Atzmon: Reviews for The Wandering Who keep coming. So far I didn’t see a single bad review. We have seen Zionists and Jewish ‘anti’ Zionists A.K.A AZZ (Anti Zionist Zionists) desperate attempts to ban the book, but, they’ve yet to offer any intelligible reasoning to do so. It is reassuring to see so many different people enjoying the book and reviewing it so positively.

The following review is written by Gaza Journalist Sameh Habeeb. It is, indeed, depressing to find out that Habeeb’s experience with the AZZ wasn’t particularly easy. It seems as if Habeeb knows what The Wandering Who is all about. He realises very well the political culture that is criticised by the book.   “As a Palestinian”, says Habeeb,  “I  believe (that) this book adds more weight to the Palestine solidarity movement.” I am left wondering who should I listen to: Sameh Habeeb, the Palestinian from Gaza who read my book, or should I better follow the orders of some four dysfunctional Jewish ‘anti’ Zionists who insist to stop my book in the name of the Palestinians?   I guess that you know the answer.

http://www.paltelegraph.com/

alt

Paris, (Pal Telegraph) – Salman Rushdi caused tremendous chaos over his allegations against Islam.  His book, “Satanic Verses,” which relied on his own personal harmed liberties in the West, caused damage in Great Britain. Rushdi was praised, won many prizes, and became an icon in the West for his open and loud criticism of Islam. He was even encouraged by the British Government, who still continues to protect him. Yet his work nearly ignited a civil war between the Muslim community in Britain and the police.

With Gilad Atzmon, it is totally different. Whenever this man tries to speak out on Israel or criticize the Jewish identity, he is accused of being an anti-Semite or a holocaust denier. Unlike Rushdie, he is not protected by British Government. In spite of many people saying he is the one of the best jazz players in the world, he can’t enter the world of celebrities.  Is there a particular reasons? Indeed! His controversial and critical views of Israel are the key reasons. In his many daily articles, Atzmon tries to clarify the facts about the nature of Israel. For this, he is constantly under attack.  His new book has recently drew the ire of the mainstream once more.

The Wandering Who is a courageous book that vividly clears the dust on many issues concerning Israel.  It really guides non-Jews to an understanding of the politics behind the Jewish identity. It helps to understand how the Zionist state operates. More importantly, it reveals the real intention of some people, and a group who pretends to support Palestinians, who are in reality supporting Israel.

 In the first chapter, Atzmon divides the Jews into various groups. The first group consists of those who follow Judaism; the second are those who happen to be Jews; and, the third consists of those who put their jewish-ness over and above all traits.

 I never knew of or how those in the third group thought, which is in spite of my encounter with them upon coming to the UK. I met some of them at pro-Palestine activities. They liked my talk since I had recently come from Gaza.  Afterward, I met some of them in many of my meetings. Surprisingly, some of them criticized me openly. They were very upset with my argument that the only solution was one state. They didn’t want any solution for the problem of Palestine. I really don’t know why a group who pretends to be pro-peace and justice could reject such a suggestion.

A very attractive subtitle in the Giad’s book speaks of Jewish separatism. I think every group or minority has to keep and protect its own identity, but there are limits to separatism. On the train going from London to Manchester one day, an English man and a Jew were having a heated debated. The English guy seemed to be very angry and abhorred the notion of Jewish separatism in Manchester. He literally said that, “You are a Jew not English. You don’t have a loyalty to England but for your own nationalism.”

Maybe Gilad is very wise to elaborate on the issue of separatism, as it’s really seems to be deep in the Jewish Dogma. This view can be supported by the calls for a Jewish state.  A state built on the Jewish race is a larger example of that which occurred on the train.

Plainly, the book tackles the religious side of Israel. In chapter 15, a very nice image has been drawn by Atzmon. It’s an exact image of the de-facto state in the occupied Palestine.  It shows you how the Jewish religion or the Bible is misused by the state of Israel. It draws images of the suffering that Palestinians face on the hand of the radical biblical new Israelites. Those religious norms referred to by Atzmon are not embodied on the settler’s level in Israel only.

The whole Israeli society is leaning to the very right. It seems that the Old-testament is the constitution of Israel. These days, the IDF is being staffed by radical Jews; and, the Israeli government is also being formed by very radical Jews. The radical Jews are the ones who are taking full control of the state.

I’m not calling for the left in Israel to come instead, as they all the same once in power. The head of the left these days, Tziphi Livni, can be more radical than religious Jews. What will govern her are limits being drawn by Ovadia Yosef and those around him. Ovadia, indeed, has great fellowship that can abrogate any government if settlements polices are frozen!

Trauma of various kinds was a theme in the Book. I think it is a realistic diagnosis that link the past and present of the Jewish nation. Israelis use the holocaust as constant tool to justify their barbaric attacks against the indigenous people of Palestine. The trauma is a embedded  within the Israeli society and its self image..

Successive Israeli governments, especially since the establishment of Israel, push their people to live in a case of fear and trauma.  They always tell the people that we are in danger from Hamas, Hezbollah and Iran. Thousands of Bunkers are there. Dozens of military drills are being carried out yearly, which costs billions.   Gilad’s fear of the alleged fake Syrian air raid is one example.

In conclusion, the book of Atzmon is a breakthrough in the taboos. He courageously dares to speak out against them and his book didn’t mind the future reactions of the Israelis and radical Jews. It is really overwhelming to have a very clear text that speaks frankly on Israel and its allies from within and in the Diaspora. As a Palestinian, I do believe this book adds more weight to the Palestine solidarity movement. It supports the Palestinian side of the story, which is that we are occupied by Israel and its allies in western Governments and elsewhere!

by Sameh Habeeb

A Palestinian Journalist from Gaza

 

You can now order The Wandering Who on Amazon.com  or Amazon.co.uk

 

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Libyan Dictator Moammar Gadhafi Is Dead, Rebels Claim

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 by crescentandcross 

 

Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi, the most wanted man in the world, has been killed, the country’s rebel government claimed today.

The flamboyant tyrant who terrorized his country and much of the world during his 42 years of despotic rule was reportedly cornered by insurgents in the town of Sirte, where Gadhafi had been born and a stronghold of his supporters.

The National Transition Council said that its fighters found and shot Gadhafi in Sirte, which finally fell to the rebels today after weeks of tough fighting. Rebels now control the entire country.

Word of Gadhafi’s death triggered celebrations in the streets of Tripoli with insurgent fighters waving their weapons and dancing jubilantly.

The White House and NATO said they were unable to confirm reports of his death.

Al Jazeera aired video of what appeared to be the dead leader, which showed Gadhafi lying in a pool of blood in the street, shirtless, and surrounded by people.

Libya’s Information Minister Mahmoud Shammam told the Associated Press that Gadhafi was in a convoy when he was attacked by rebels.

NATO said that its jet fighters struck a convoy of Gadhafi’s loyalists fleeing Sirte this morning, but could not confirm that Gadhafi was in the convoy, the Associated Press reported.

Gadhafi had been on the run for weeks after being chased out of the capital Tripoli by NATO bombers and rebel troops.

He had been believed to be hiding in the vast Libyan desert while calling on his supporters to rise up and sweep the rebel “dogs” away, but his once fearsome power was scoffed at by Libyans who had ransacked his palace compound and hounded him into hiding.

Gadhafi, 69, ruled Libya with an iron fist for almost 42 years. He seized control of Libya in Sept., 1969 in a bloodless coup when he was just 27 years old. The then young and dashing army captain and his small band of military officers overthrew the monarch King Idris, setting up a new Libyan Arab Republic that over the years became increasingly isolated from the rest of the world.

Gadhafi took over the top spot as the world’s most wanted man after Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. troops in Pakistan.

At the height of his ability to threaten terrorism, President Ronald Reagan dubbed Gadhafi the “mad dog of the Middle East.”

He was accused of backing the 1986 bombing of a Berlin disco popular with American soldiers, reportedly funding the hijacking of the cruise ship Achille Lauro in 1985, and the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, which resulted in the U.N. and United States imposing sanctions on Libya.

For years, Gadhafi refused to take responsibility for the bombing, but that changed in 2003 when he acknowledged his role and tried to make amends.

The eccentric leader, who amassed power and wealth by controlling the nation’s oil industry, held the title of being the longest-serving leader in Africa and the Arab world.

Over the years, Gadhafi earned an international reputation for his outlandish apparel and much-ridiculed phobias and proclivities.

In U.S. diplomatic cables recently released by WikiLeaks, Gadhafi was described as a “mercurial and eccentric figure who suffers from severe phobias, enjoys flamenco dancing and horse racing, acts on whims and irritates friends and enemies alike.”

He was “obsessively dependent on a small core of trusted personnel,” especially his longtime Ukrainian nurse Galyna, who has been described as a “voluptuous blonde,” according to the cables.

Among his other unusual behaviors, the Libyan leader reportedly feared flying over water, didn’t like staying on upper floors and traveled with a “pistol packing’ posse” of female bodyguards.

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Refugees, Gandhi’s and Free Radicals

by Eileen Fleming

Gandhi pointed out three possible responses to oppression and injustice. The coward’s way out, which is to accept the wrong and run away, or to stand and fight by force of arms, but the third and best way is to fight by speaking truth and remaining physically nonviolent.

The Palestinian Gandhi Project is a joint “labor of love” of two women, who I am blessed to know as friends and sisters in the good fight for justice and peace who are grounded in compassion and outraged over the brutal truth.

I met journalist and marketing communications consultant, Pam Bailey in June 2009, when I was ‘embedded’ with a Code Pink delegation who had been invited to Gaza to build playgrounds and witness the facts on the ground, post Cast Lead.

Pam began traveling to Palestine in 2007, and recently returned from a six-month sojourn as a freelance writer and social media instructor for citizen journalists in Gaza Palestine.

The first videos featured on their website were shot in Gaza in January-March of 2011, at the height of the Arab Spring. The next filming trip is planned for January/February 2012, and will begin in the refugee camps of Lebanon, Syria and Jordan.

Pam explained, “The main reason why my business partner and I called our latest venture the Palestinian Gandhi Project is that this is the language used by everyone else… [we] respond with pictures and videos…[about] what we mean by ‘Gandhian.’” [1]

MEET Keren and Pam:

Download Video

I met the other co-founder of the Palestinian Gandhi Project on the second Saturday in September 2007, in Arlington, Virginia, at George Mason University. We both were attending the 6th annual US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation of Palestine.

During a small group break out session, we were asked our organizational affiliations, and Keren Batiyov replied, “I am an organization of one and I am here as a free radical.”

She later explained, “I associate Free Radicals-in the political sense-with Anarchism and a rejection of hierarchy and establishment authority. As a free radical I choose to work with groups whose goals are justice and peace.”

Keren also introduced me to the writings of Jewish Liberation Theologian, Marc Ellis.

“Marc Ellis coined the term ‘Constantinian Judaism’ and is a Jewish Liberation Theologian – what he thinks and writes is drawn from the prophets – in other words, the prophetic tradition of Judaism – the tradition that says that you stand for and with the oppressed, whoever and wherever they are. What Christian Liberation Theology says that Jesus taught – a preferential option for the poor and oppressed, Jewish Liberation Theology draw the same teaching from the prophets.”

Keren was born and bred in a fundamentalist Christian home, but at the age of 40 connected with her Jewish roots and converted Jesus from God back into his originally understood role of divine prophet.

I contend that a prophet can best be understood as one who points out impending doom and provokes those so inclined to think about God: to THINK!

In 2005, Keren spoke at Marquette University, at “Jews of Conscience: Voices of Justice and Peace, Hope and Obligation” conference, “I was forty when I converted and I can still recall, sixteen years later, the feeling of finally having arrived at home, wondering how and why I had been born into a Christian fundamentalist family when I had obviously been Jewish from the beginning.

“I was drawn to Judaism because of its long tradition of justice, ethics, and dissent; its emphasis on education, study, and questioning everything, including God. The prophetic tradition of Judaism resonated deeply within me. What do I mean by the prophetic tradition? I refer to the commands of the prophets that we seek peace and pursue justice; that we stand for and with the oppressed – whoever and wherever they are; and that we not do to another anything that we would not want done to ourselves.

“About six years ago I began to sense that I was not hearing the entire story about the Israel/Palestine conflict from the Jewish community. So I set out to study and read as much as I could. I read Jewish historians, sociologists, linguists, political scientists, activists, rabbis, politicians, journalists, and theologians – and I regularly read Ha’aretz. It was also during this initial phase that I discovered the writings of Marc Ellis, whose statement you heard earlier. The more I read, the more disparity I saw between what I was hearing from the mainstream Jewish community and our media and what I was reading from those with first-hand knowledge. The more I read, the more I began to question, to voice my questions, and eventually to speak out against the abuses of the Israeli occupation. And then I discovered the lengths to which the organized mainstream Jewish community would go in order to bully and intimidate those who criticized Israel.

“I worked for a Jewish organization at the time and I was told to shut up about the Israel-Palestine conflict; that if I continued to speak publicly about it, I would lose my job. I have been called “self-hating” and “a deadly enemy of the Jewish community”; I have had my Jewishness impugned; I have been asked if I would have also supported Hitler; and I have been accused, in a letter to the local rabbis and Jewish community leaders of the “crime” of hugging Muslim women.

“According to Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, the prophets were also hated and considered traitorous. In his book, The Prophets, Heschel says, “The striking surprise is that the prophets of Israel were tolerated at all by their people. To the patriots, they seemed pernicious; to the pious multitude, blasphemous; to the men in authority, seditious.” But what does it say about our Jewish community, when justice is discarded for nationalism? What does it say about our Jewish community when we, as Jews, are commanded to question everything, including God – in fact Israel means “God wrestler.” So what does it say about our Jewish community when we are commanded to question, and argue with God, but we are forbidden to question or criticize Israel?

“Being a Jew of conscience also invites loneliness and isolation…My voice was activated by a sense of justice, a deep commitment to the precepts of the Judaism to which I had converted, an outrage that political Zionism was not only attempting to hijack Judaism, it was oppressing another people. For me, there was no choice – I had to speak out.

“After several years of studying the conflict and doing some local activism, I knew that as a Jew of conscience it was incumbent upon me to do more. The studying and local activism continued, and does to this day, but I also knew that it was time to physically stand in solidarity with the Palestinians in the Occupied Territories. Despite the fact that Zionism is not Judaism and Judaism is not Zionism, Palestinians know that it is Israelis who oppress and humiliate them, and most Israelis are Jews. It was important to me to put a different face on Judaism – the face of justice and ethics – the face that drew me to Judaism in the first place.

“Because I am a pacifist I looked for groups that reflected that philosophy and I eventually chose to work with the International Solidarity Movement, a Palestinian-led group based on the non-violent action and resistance principles of Gandhi and Martin Luther King. ISM was founded approximately four years ago by Palestinians and is supported by Israeli and international activists. In October, 2004 I journeyed to Palestine to work with ISM during the Olive Harvest. I was stationed near Nablus at Balata Refugee Camp.

“Now I come to the point in my presentation where I have struggled mightily with what to tell you. Because of time constraints there is no way I can give you more than a thumbnail image of life on the West Bank. So what do I tell you?

“Do I tell you about the 312 miles (and increasing) of Jewish-only roads? Apart-ride, I call them. Do I tell you about the 500 checkpoints on the West Bank, an area slightly smaller than Delaware? Do I tell you that 39 people died at checkpoints in 2004 due to denial or delay? Do I tell you about the 360, 000 olive trees that have been uprooted and destroyed? Or do I tell you about the 4,100 homes that have been demolished during this Intifada alone?

“Do I tell you about the trenches that are dug – some of them miles long, 16 feet wide and 9 feet deep – to separate Palestinian farmers from their lands – to make life increasingly difficult for Palestinians? Do I tell you how sewer lines are severed when these trenches are dug, polluting Palestinian streams and water supplies? We hear a great deal about “security;” that Israel only acts from security needs – so do I tell you about the 500 dumpsters that were arbitrarily destroyed in Nablus?

“Do I tell you that Israelis consume six times as much water as Palestinians are allowed? That while Israeli settlements, (settlements illegal under international law), have no shortage of water for drinking, washing, maintenance of swimming pools and irrigating freely, Palestinians frequently are without water, some villages for several weeks at a time; that many children have kidney problems due to the lack of water? Do I tell you that the water denied the Palestinians comes from their aquifers on their land?

“Do I tell you about the olive trees that haven’t been tended for three to four years because Israel will not permit farmers to work their fields – that trees that used to bear 40-50 kilos per tree are now bearing 10 kilos? Do I tell you that farmers must have a permit to harvest their crops and if they are lucky enough to obtain a permit, they are granted only two to three days to bring in their entire harvest? And do I tell you that even with the permit, there is no guarantee that they will not be harassed or prevented from harvesting by soldiers and/or settlers?

“Do I tell you about the day that our group was brutally attacked by Israeli soldiers as we threw our bodies over our Palestinian coordinator, Mohamed, to protect him from arrest? Do I tell you how the soldiers viciously beat and kicked almost everyone on the human pile covering Mohamed – that they only withdrew after one of the soldiers pointed his gun at the head of an ISMer from Sweden, who was beaten and on the ground; that it was only then that the commanding officer yelled, “Dai, dai,” (Enough, enough)? Should I tell you how I sensed that Mohamed, until that incident, viewed me with skepticism for I had made no secret of the fact that I was a Jew? Or perhaps I should tell you that he came to me afterward and thanked me for covering his body; that he extended his hand to me to shake – and this was during Ramadan when, among other proscriptions, contact with the opposite sex is prohibited.

“Do I tell you that there are almost 9,000 Palestinian political prisoners? That many are arrested and held on administrative detention, meaning they can be held for six months without charge? Do I tell you that at the end of six months, another six months can be added? And another, and another; that some Palestinians have been held for three and four years without ever a charge brought against them? Do I tell you about the prisoners who are tortured; that some men return to their communities sterile, as a result of the tortures?

“Should tell you that seven of Mohamed’s friends, including his best friend, have been murdered by the Israeli army; that I saw the pictures of his best friend whose body was rendered like charred hamburger and his face blown away – by an Apache missile. Or maybe I should tell you that when I asked Mohamed why he chose to work with ISM, a non-violent resistance group, given the violent deaths of his friends at the hands of the Israeli army, he quietly replied, “Because I have a hope for peace.”

“Do I tell you that Israelis have killed almost four times as many Palestinians as Palestinians have killed Israelis during this Intifada? That Palestinian children represent 22% of the fatalities and 42% of the injuries? That Israeli soldiers are ordered to kill unarmed civilians, including children? That half of the child fatalities are from wounds, sniper wounds, to the chest or the head? Do I tell you about fellow-ISMer Karen, from England, who when she saw Israeli snipers on the roof in Balata Refugee Camp and saw that one of them had his gun trained on her, held up her hands and cried “Stop, don’t shoot – Internationals”? Do I tell you that the sniper didn’t shoot her, but moved his gun and shot dead a 12-year old Palestinian boy near her?

“What do I tell you? And how do I even begin to tell you?

“Before leaving Palestine, I predicted that the hardest work would begin upon my return home – sharing my experience, exposing the ugliness of occupation, and providing an alternative Jewish voice to that of mainstream American Jewish mythmaking and denial. I also had promises to keep – promises to the Palestinians and to fellow-ISMers whom I left behind – that I would tell their stories; that I would send others to take my place…

“Yet, at the same moment I realized that I had no hope, simultaneously obligation stepped in. It didn’t matter how I felt, I was obligated to continue standing for and with the Palestinians. In the absence of hope there is obligation. Marc Ellis, in the final paragraph of his book, Toward A Jewish Theology of Liberation, says ‘If we throw strategy to the wind and end our hope for victory, then we are free to be faithful.’

“Free to be faithful – I don’t know that it could be conveyed more beautifully — we’re not called to be effective, we’re called to be faithful – because there are no guarantees of outcome – because there will be times when hope is hidden or lost or even destroyed. I’m sure the prophets knew the chances of being heard and heeded were pretty slim. I’m not convinced they always had hope, in fact I don’t recall that God ever commanded us to have hope – but we are commanded over and over to pursue justice, to deal justly with every human being. The prophets were faithful, constant – they took their obligations to speak truth to power very seriously. It wasn’t, and isn’t, about outcomes or return-on-investment, it’s about doing what is right and just only because it is right and just. This is what it means to be a Jew of conscience, a person of conscience. Hope is a luxury; obligation and faithfulness are essentials.

“In Marc Ellis’ statement he spoke of the need for a reckoning with Jewish history and a confession to the Palestinian people. I want to close with a prayer that I wrote several years ago in anticipation of Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year for Jews – a time when we seek forgiveness from God – but only in first seeking the forgiveness of those whom we have wronged can we presume to ask forgiveness from God. Perhaps one day Israel will make such a confession.

T’shuvah* For A Nation

God forgive us
for hostility toward those we perceive
to be not like ourselves;
for judging the powerless contemptible—
though it was we who rendered them so;
for believing that we are better, more deserving,
and even entitled, because our own suffering has been so great.

God forgive us
for turning our pain into a grisly weapon
with which we torment others;
for perpetuating the poisonous cycle—
from abused to abuser;
for despising the stranger, the refugee, the homeless—
for forgetting that we have been all of these.

God forgive us
for the thousands we have displaced and discounted;
for the land we have confiscated
and the homes we have demolished;
for the trees we have uprooted, and the water withheld;
for the hearts, and bones, and promises we have broken;
for the hatred we have engendered.

God forgive us
for invoking your name to justify revenge
and ethnic cleansing;
for citing Security to legitimize murder and torture;
for exploiting the Holocaust to defend doing to others
what has been done to us.

God forgive us
for the blinders we so carefully fabricate
to hide our eyes
from the humanity of the people we call enemy;
the same whom history records as kin.

God forgive us
for euphemisms, Orwellian doublespeak, and outright lies;
for hiring high-powered firms to sell myths
of innocence and righteousness;
for seeking a face lift for our image
instead of atonement for our soul.

May God forgive us.
May those we have so terribly wronged
forgive us.

Repentance ©Keren Batiyov

For many years the existence of free radicals was dismissed as non-existent or just a curiosity. This view has changed; and currently the role of free radicals in many unexplained disease phenomena such as rheumatoid arthritis, Alzheimer’s, hypertension, heart disease, liver cell injury and cancers, is being met with growing enthusiasm by scientists and physicians alike, who seek to not just treat symptoms, but heal.

Free Radicals live short intense lives are highly reactive with most molecules and that includes DNA, thus Free Radicals can potentially alter one’s very core.

Free Radicals are all on a mission to enter into another molecule in order to complete themselves by uniting with another cells electron. This action sets up a chain reaction that once begun, will cascade and result in changing a living cell.

I wondered if perhaps Jesus could be considered a free radical too.

Jesus was never a Christian; in fact that term was not even coined until three decades later, in the days of Paul.

Jesus was a social justice, radical revolutionary Palestinian devout Jewish Road Warrior who challenged the job security of the Temple authorities by teaching the people they did not need to pay the priests for ritual baths or sacrificing livestock to be OK with God-for God LOVED them just as they were; ‘sinners’, outcasts, diseased, cripples, poor, oppressed, widows, orphans, refugees and prisoners all enduring under a brutal Roman Military Occupation.

What got Jesus crucified was disturbing the status quo of the ROF/Roman Occupying Forces by teaching such subversive concepts as God preferred the ‘sinners’, outcasts, diseased, cripples, poor, oppressed widows, orphans, refugees and prisoners above the elite and arrogant.

The early followers and lovers of Jesus were called members of THE WAY; being THE WAY Jesus taught: You must forgive to be forgiven and pray, bless and love your enemies-NOT bomb, torture or occupy any!

Jesus also said that his sisters and brothers, where those that DID the WILL of the Father.

“What does God require? He has told you o’man! Be just, be merciful, and walk humbly with your Lord.” -Micah 6:8

2,000 years ago the cross had NO symbolic religious meaning. When Jesus said: “Pick up your cross and follow me” everyone back then understood he was issuing a political statement, for crucifixion was Rome’s way of ridding itself of rebels, dissidents, outlaws, outcasts any who disturbed the status quo of the elite.

Keren also introduced me to this quote by Allen Ginsburg:

“F— hope! It’s not about hope. You don’t do what you do because you hope things will get better. It’s about getting up every morning and asking yourself what’s the right thing to do and doing it.”

Learn more and may you do something too: Palestinian Gandhi Project

1. http://mondoweiss.net/2011/10/do-we-really-need-another-gandhi.html

Posted in Human RightsComments Off on Refugees, Gandhi’s and Free Radicals

Conflicting Perceptions of Estranged Allies

NOVANEWS

by Asif Haroon Raja

Till 2004, Pakistan was a peaceful country and suicide bombing was unheard of. The figure of terrorism afflicted casualties began to rise from 2005 onwards and by 2007 the number rose to 3599 killed. The death toll has now jumped to 35000. While the total fatalities of ISAF in Afghanistan from 2001 till 30 September were 2670, which includes 1800 US soldiers, Pak Army alone has suffered 3500 deaths and injuries to 10,000 soldiers. Wear and tear of weapons, tanks, APCs, helicopters, guns and vehicles is substantial. Given the acute resource constraints, it is very difficult for Pak Army to replace them or get them overhauled. The Army and Frontier Corps have been provided very limited counter terror equipment by USA and have not been paid their dues for the services rendered and for deploying 147000 troops in FATA and Swat region in deference to the wishes of USA.

Had the US been able to contain terrorism in Afghanistan, the wave of terrorism would not have entered Pakistan. Ironically, the US and its strategic partners rather than helping Pakistan in controlling terrorism have been fomenting terrorism. Failing to make any headway, White House belatedly realized that military option will not solve the Afghan tangle. It therefore decided to give a push to the political prong and to earnestly work towards political settlement through negotiations with irreconcilable Taliban and move out.

After jointly fighting the war on terror for a decade and suffering a lot, the two allies USA and Pakistan are cross with each other. Both are not on the same page and their perceptions on several issues are at variance. Setbacks of US in Afghanistan are principally the main cause of its frustration, edginess and resentment against their foes as well as Pakistan. Its military as well as political prongs have failed to make any worthwhile progress. Neither the Taliban been defeated in the battlefield nor have Taliban agreed to hold talks. Failing to do anything against the Taliban who are on rampage, the US gives vent to its impotent rage by blaming Pakistan for all its failures. Spin doctors of ISAF have been continuously churning out fabricated anti-Pakistan stories and allegations to cover up US blunders. In the aftermath of Raymond Davis incident and raid in Abbottabad to get OBL, trust deficit between the two allies has widened. While the US is behaving tough and trying to cow down Pakistan, the latter for a change is courageously facing its media and diplomatic blitz and economic and military coercion.

The US military not favorably inclined to the idea of dialogue with Taliban or drawdown of troops continues to apply force against the Taliban and also threatens Pakistan to launch an operation in North Waziristan (NW) despite Pakistan expressing its regrets. Having declared that al-Qaeda has been sufficiently emasculated and that it is no more a major threat to US interests in Afghanistan, the US has now come up with Haqqani Network (HN) allegedly based in safe havens in NW and is projecting it as the most dangerous group. After the 13 September attacks in Kabul and murder of Burhanuddin Rabbani, the US has started accusing ISI that it is linked with HN and is using it as its proxy in Afghanistan. Last week of September saw US military and civil officials in bad temper. They expressed their resentment against Pakistan openly and threatened to intervene if Pakistan didn’t proceed against HN. The US has now deployed hundreds of troops to seal NW border and also to multiply pressure on Pakistan.

The US officials are cribbing that $20 billion assistance provided to Pakistan has gone down the drain since returns made by Pakistan are not commensurate to the quantum of aid given. The US and India think that the US military aid to Pakistan instead of being utilized on fighting anti-US and anti-India militants in Pakistan is being used to enhance its military capacity against India. The two suspects that the Army and ISI are covertly sponsoring four militant groups HN in NW, Mullah Omar’s Shura in Quetta region, al-Qaeda and Lashkar-e-Taiba, and will not abandon any of them for any amount of US money since these groups act as proxies against India and Afghanistan.

Pakistan argues that sacrifices it rendered to fight US dictated war are far in excess than any other country and it has suffered three times more economic loss rather than making gains. It maintains that to what good is the US aid when its socio-politico-economic health has deteriorated and become much worse than pre-September 2001. It complains that the US aid has neither strengthened democracy nor institutions, or helped in reducing poverty, or in overcoming its energy crisis, or in reducing fiscal deficit and inflation. Pakistan rightly grieves that the US has all along selfishly remained focused on war on terror and paid scant attention to the problems of people. It says that India and not Pakistan has hugely benefited from the US assistance.

Pakistan has rejected the allegation that ISI in cahoots with HN is using violent extremism as an instrument of policy and exporting violence in Afghanistan. It categorically denied having had anything to do with attacks in Wardak and Kabul or murder of Rabbani. Pakistan counters the US tirade by asserting that Pakistan is the biggest victim of terrorism, which is promoted by RAW and several other intelligence agencies including CIA using Afghan soil. It has been furnishing evidence of involvement of RAW in Balochistan and FATA but so far no step has been taken by USA to restrain its strategic partner since both have common objectives. Pakistan is also the biggest sufferer of drone war.

Pakistan Army feels insulted to be called an unreliable ally and accused of its linkage with al-Qaeda affiliated with Taliban after it lost so many lives of its brave hearts and playing a key role in shrinking their capacity to fight. It is sickened over the incendiary language used by US officials. It shoots back that the comparative casualty rate of security forces of Pakistan vis-à-vis that of ISAF, ANA and India will give a clear picture to a neutral onlooker as to who is aligned and who is fighting them. Moreover, the US has so far not provided any proof to substantiate its allegations. With its high tech intelligence gathering resources and presence of CIA network and Blackwater inside Pakistan, it can easily gather evidence to indict Pakistan.

Interestingly, the US after demonizing the HN and charging that the ISI is using HN as its strategic arm against US targets in Afghanistan and trying to bully Pakistan and making it comply with its demand to go after HN in NW, Hillary Clinton had the brashness to say that the US would like to open dialogue with HN. The US has so far not declared it as a terrorist group. Sirajuddin Haqqani son of Jalauddin Haqqani, heading a small wing of Haqqani force and till recent based in NW, gave an interview to BBC on 3 October. He revealed that the US officials as well as emissaries from other Muslim and non-Muslim countries have been in contact with him and convincing him to abandon Mullah Omar and join Karzai’s government, but he rejected their offers saying that he would do as told by his leader Mullah Omar. He dispelled the widely held misperception that HN is an independent group and clarified that Haqqani’s were part of Mullah Omar led Taliban.

All Taliban groups in Afghanistan have denied their involvement in Rabbani’s murder and have unanimously opined that Indian lobby in Afghanistan planned the assassination since it was averse to peace talks and wanted to disrupt it. This revelation has further degraded India in the eyes of Taliban and they have now become more determined to expel them from their country. Gen McChrystal was right in his assessment that Indian presence in Afghanistan is part of the problem. Gen Dempsey and Gen Allen should mull over McChrystal’s observation.

Posted in USAComments Off on Conflicting Perceptions of Estranged Allies

Ex Marine Sgt Speaks on Occupy Wall Street Incident

NOVANEWS

Marine Corps Veteran Sgt. Shamar Thomas on Occupy Times Square, Veterans’ Rights

After the violent clashes between police and protesters at Saturday’s massive Occupy Wall Street demonstration in Times Square, a marine who served in Iraq delivered an impromptu speech in front of some NYPD officers, denouncing their crowd-control methods and police brutality.

“This is not a war zone!” he yells at NYPD officers. “These are unarmed people.”

A crowd eventually gathers around the marine,identified as Sergeant. Shamar Thomas, who served with the 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion USMC in Iraq.

Thomas, a New York native, then explains that his father served in Afghanistan, his mother served in Iraq and that he doesn’t like seeing cops hurting the people he and his family fought to protect:

I took an Oath that I live by. am NOT anti-NYPD. I am anti- Police Brutality. I am no longer under contract with the USMC so I do NOT have to follow military uniform regulations. I DON’T affiliate myself with ANY GROUPS or POLITICAL ORG. I affiliate myself with the AMERICAN PEOPLE that’s it. I REFUSE to affiliate with anything that SEPARATES.

There is an obvious problem in the country and PEACEFUL PEOPLE should be allowed to PROTEST without Brutality. I was involved in a RIOT in Rutbah, Iraq 2004 and we did NOT treat the Iraqi citizens like they are treating the unarmed civilians in our OWN Country. No one was brutalized because our mission was to ‘WIN the hearts and minds.’ why should I expect anything less in my OWN Country.

Earlier this month a group of veterans calling themselves OccupyMARINES came out in support of the Occupy Wall Street protests, now entering their thirtieth day.

They write on their Facebook page, “Marines support the movement. We will support demonstrators with organization, direction, supply and logistics, and leadership.” It is illegal for active duty soldiers to protest in uniform. It appears all of the OccupyMarines are retired.


Posted in USAComments Off on Ex Marine Sgt Speaks on Occupy Wall Street Incident

What the Occupiers Should Rant: Face On the $20 Bill, Says it All

NOVANEWS

by Tom Valentine

Quiz question—whose face is on the $20 Bill? More importantly, why do many, including me, consider Andrew Jackson the greatest of the presidents? He vetoed the banksters, that’s why. Have we forgotten?

Where the hell has the Andrew Jackson Societybeen in this huge occupy streets fight?

Andrew Jackson opposed the national bank and abolished it because:

  • it is unconstitutional;

  • it concentrated an excessive amount of the nation’s financial strength into a single institution;

  • it exposed the government to control by “foreign interests”;

  • it exercised too much control over members of Congress;

How can intelligent protesters not be waving his image on posters? If a media whore were to confront me at a rally, I would use the Socratic method (answer question with another question) for public response. It might go like this:

Fox news (with talking points to destroy protest reason in hand):
“Sir, why are you protesting?”

Me, (holding up a twenty, also called a Jackson, to camera). First thought, not spoken—“You ignorant presstitute! “Do you know enough to tell me why Andrew Jackson is honored with his likeness on this bill?”

I’d bet a bunch of Jackson’s on the reporter not knowing.

Not everyone was fooled by the bank schemers of 1913; This political cartoon was prominently displayed in 1912 as the crooks were gearing up for installing the Fed. Can’t say people were not warned.

How about a making a phone call into Hannity, or Limbaugh, along the same lines—screener might not get you, but be sure that the excessively long delay to kill button will. Rush might even know the answer, so Hannity would be my choice.

Can we make this quiz go viral on the net?

Andrew Jackson is not revered for anything else; he sent Amerinds to reservations and won some battles as a general, but it is for his strong, independent stand against the bleeping banksters that he is known. How could we forget?

Neocons in their religious swoon do not think about Old Hickory, after all he was a founding Democrat.

Filthy politicians and nasty banksters were on a roll in Jackson’s day much as they are now so he said:

“I weep for the liberty of my country when I see at this early day of its successful experiment that corruption has been imputed to many members of the House of Representatives, and the rights of the people have been bartered for promises of office.”

Guts and brains in the 7th president. We miss them, and should not let this memory die.

Elected president in 1828, Jackson supported a small and limited federal government. He strengthened the power of the presidency, which he saw as spokesman for the entire population, as opposed to Congressmen from a specific small district.

Strongly against the national bank, he vetoed the renewal of its charter and ensured its collapse. Whigs and moralists denounced his aggressive enforcement of the Indian Removal Act, which resulted in the forced relocation of thousands of Native American tribes to Indian Territory (now Oklahoma). Historians acknowledge his protection of popular democracy and individual liberty for United States citizens, and sometimes criticize him for his support for slavery and for his role in Indian removal

Also see:

Mainstream Media Biased Coverage of ‘Occupy Wall Street’ Demonstrations

Posted in USAComments Off on What the Occupiers Should Rant: Face On the $20 Bill, Says it All

Hugging the Cactus – America and Pakistan

NOVANEWS

by Ken Smith

Like many Americans I follow the war in Afghanistan though the media.  I watch our troops perform their duties with honor and courage.  I actively search online for stories about how our armed forces are performing to better understand the difficulties and sacrifices that they make every day.

I don’t understand how our ground commanders are hindered by some invisible fence that seems to divide Afghanistan from Pakistan.  It seems odd to me that our troops take fire from insurgents on the Pakistani side of the border, and yet are restricted from firing back.  I use the example of rocket and mortar fire recently, that was undeniably coming from Pakistan.

(See:  KABUL: Afghan President Hamid Karzai accuses Pakistan of firing 470 rockets into two of its eastern border provinces in a three-week barrage.)

When are we going to understand that the “frontier” sections of Pakistan are not under the control of the Pakistani government, and this lawless region has been this way for hundreds of years.   Didn’t we learn anything from the British who attempted to bring peace and services to this part of the world that appears to be living in the 7th century?

I advocate that our battle commanders should have clear and concise “Rules of engagement” that allows US Troops to defend themselves regardless of geography.  How to do we explain to an American family that their son or daughter was killed by insurgents operating 10 miles inside of Pakistan, firing rockets or mortars from inside a country that appears to the world to be a country that is incapable of controlling its own territory?

I understand like most Americans the complexities of the geo politics of the region and I applaud our president for accelerating the use of drones to target those who are killing our troops in cross border fighting.   At the same time, I wonder, like you, how we are going to extradite ourselves from this fight.

I am planning a trip to Afghanistan as a free lance reporter next year, and have submitted my request to the Defense Department to see first hand how difficult this insurgency is to fight.

I have tremendous respect for those Americans who are on the front line right now, working to change the paradigm and insure that this region of the world doesn’t foster anymore terrorists that come to our country to harm Americans.

I also wonder to myself what is happening along the Afghanistan –Iranian border?  We hear very little news from this part of the theatre of war, and is it because we have an unwritten agreement with Iran?

Let there be no mistake, our relationship with Pakistan is like hugging a cactus.

Posted in Pakistan & KashmirComments Off on Hugging the Cactus – America and Pakistan

FBI Goes Rogue on Iran

NOVANEWS

DOES ANYONE CARE ?

by Dr. Lawrence Davidson

Part I – Going Rogue Again

Back on 1 September 2011 I posted a piece titled America’s FBI Goes Rogue. The gist of that piece was that the FBI’s Counter Terrorist Unit has transformed itself into an instigator of crime.

The Agency’s modus operandi (MO) here reminds one of those carnivorous plants that have evolved physical shapes that lure their insect victims to their deaths. So too does the FBI’s approach to “terror prevention” rely on spinning crime scenarios so as to lure unsuspecting “terrorists” into a criminal trap.

The recently announced arrest of the American-Iranian, Mansor Arbsibsiar, a “failed used car salesman turned drug peddler (who has a cousin employed by Iran’s Quds Force, the special operations unit of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards) falls neatly into this MO. The U.S. Justice Department alleges that Arbsibsiar planned to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador in Washington. At the same time the Department assures us that,according to U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, “for the entire operation, the government’s confidential sources were monitored and guided by federal law enforcement agents.” In this case the confidential source was a Drug Enforcement Agency operative, who is himself a convicted felon. According to Gareth Porter, the operative is heard on one of the FBI’s clandestine recording “inducing Arbarsiar to agree to the assassination of the Saudi ambassador.” That is entrapment and it is illegal. The “guides” are FBI agents who are involved in fabricating the crime itself. The result is a guaranteed arrest for the government. As Glenn Greenwald has noted, “nobody can deny its [the Department of Justice] record of excellence in thwarting its own terrorist plots.” And indeed, not unexpectedly, Bharara reminded us that during the entire “terrorist” episode, “no one was actually in danger.”

THE BUCK STOPS HERE! WILL HE GET AWAY AGAIN ?

There has always been a fine line dividing the criminal from the police. That is why all major police departments have internal affairs units. The FBI’s Counter Terrorist Unit has obviously crossed that line. The precedent this sets is bad enough, but with this particular case the Justice Department has gone much further. They have charged a foreign country, Iran, with complicity in this alleged crime. It is supposed that Arbarsiar was recruited by his cousin to contact a Mexico drug cartel to assist him in the plot. This has let loose a plethora of threats by the United States government against Iran. President Obama himself has stepped forward to lead the charge. “This is not just a dangerous escalation, this is part of a pattern of dangerous and reckless behavior by the Iranian government….Even if Iran’s leaders did not have detailed operational knowledge, there has to be accountability with respect to anybody in the Iranian government engaging in this kind of activity.”

Part II – The Hypocrisy of it All

Since the Justice Department and the FBI have such a liking for the creative envisioning of criminal scenarios, perhaps we can do the same thing. Consider the following:

1. Someone in the depths of one of American’s many spy agencies,

perhaps in cooperation with an allied nation, decides to assassinate Iranian nuclear experts. They decide to use proxies and go looking for guns for hire. They don’t go to Mexico for this, but rather to one of the Iranian exile groups with appropriate contacts inside Iran. The next thing you know a number of that country’s nuclear scientists and engineers end up dead. Soon thereafter President Amadinejad holds a news conference and says, “This is not just a dangerous escalation, this is part of a pattern of dangerous and reckless behavior by the U.S. government….Even if American leaders did not have detailed operational knowledge, there has to be accountability with respect to anybody in the American government engaging in this kind of activity.”

2. Now we move to the bowels of the Pentagon where someone has drawn up a list of people who are believed to be connected to Al Qaeda. Some of the names are put on the list because of “intelligence” reports citing second and third hand information. Some are more solid. One name is selected and the person’s approximate whereabouts goes out to the military geeks who program U.S. drones flying out of the Persian Gulf area. Some highly trained computer jockey then launches one of these drones and using an elaborate joystick flies the bomb with wings right to its target–which happens to be someone’s house.

Maybe they kill their intended target and maybe they don’t. However, a goodly number of innocent folks unlucky enough to be in the neighborhood do die. After dozens of such attacks the President of Afghanistan or maybe Pakistan holds a news conference and says, “This is not just a dangerous escalation, this is part of a pattern of dangerous and reckless behavior by the U.S. government….Even if American leaders did not have detailed operational knowledge, there has to be accountability with respect to anybody in the American government engaging in this kind of activity.”

One could go on with such examples for a long time. The point is that President Obama and the host of other American politicians and officials who have gone on record with displays of righteous indignation over Iran’s alleged involvement in a plot to enter someone else’s territory for the purpose of assassination, are probably going to appear as embarrassing hypocrites in all future relevant and objective histories. One wonders if they even care.

Part III – Small Worlds All Around

Why do our political leaders act in such duplicitous and hypocritical fashion? To try to answer that question it helps to remember just how small and closed a world they live in. Their world is not an open field of public discourse or the vigorous debate of opposing viewpoints. Rather, It is bordered by the demands and points of view of interest groups that are themselves self-referencing when it comes to objectives and indifferent to morality and, indeed, truth beyond their own arena of action. Here are two relevant examples:

John McCain, Joe Lieberman, Lindsey Graham

A. One self-referencing interest group is the law enforcement community which, given the chance, will begin to act in an authoritarian manner and thus with no real regard for rules or procedures that restrict the range of their powers. The 11 September 2001 attacks ushered in just such a chance for this special interest to justify actions beyond the Constitution. This behavior, in turn, has actually been encouraged by a large number of politicians catering to a majority of citizens most of whom care little for the rights they rarely exercise in their daily lives. As it turns out this majority appears quite willing to sacrifice those rights in the mistaken belief that doing so enhances their security.

B. Another self-referencing group is the Zionists and their supporters who also are instinctually authoritarian in their behavior and thus perfectly willing to disregard the Constitution to achieve their purposes. One of these purposes is the destruction of Iran. It is with their encouragement that more and more Congressmen and women are jumping on the anti-Iran bandwagon. It is with their encouragement that, hovering in the background of the televised denouncements of Iran are U.S. Treasury officials known to be personally pro-Israel. These officials are primed to institute sanctions on Iran’s central bank in the hopes of destroying that country’s economy. That their excuse to do so borders on farce disturbs them not at all.

Behind all of this lies the generic problem of getting the public, so tightly focused on their day to day activities to realize, on the one hand, that what they are told in the media and by the government is not necessarily true. In fact, more often then not, it is untrue. And, on the other hand, that the consequences of blindly following where these pied pipers lead can cause immense death and destruction. Just remember Viet Nam and Iraq. But many do not remember and so one is led to the conclusion that such self-destructive behavior can persist for generations.

Judge Andrew Napolitano interviews Former CIA Operative Michael Scheuer, on Freedom Watch.


Posted in USAComments Off on FBI Goes Rogue on Iran

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