Archive | November 13th, 2012

51% of IsraHell’s say another political murder possible

NOVANEWS

Seventeen years after Rabin assassination, majority of public believes lesson has not been learned. Haredim, settlers top list of most hated sectors in IsraHell’i society

ynet

Seventeen years have passed since the State of Israel experienced one of the most traumatic events in its history – the political murder of a prime minister by a citizen. Has the lesson been learned?

A Ynet-Gesher poll reveals that half of the public believes the lesson has not been learned and that there is a moderate to high chance of another political murder.

The survey was conducted by the Panels research institute through the Panel4all Internet panel among 510 respondents – a representative sample of the adult population in the State of Israel’s Jewish communities (maximum sampling error: 4.4%).

The first question the survey asked was: “In your opinion, what is the chance of another political murder to take place in Israel?” Four percent answered “a very high chance,” 18.3% said “high” and 28% said “moderate” – a total of 51%.

On the other hand, 42% believe there is a small chance of another political murder, and 7% of respondents said “there is no chance at all.”

An analysis according to religious affiliation definitions reveals that the majority of the secular public believes the chance of another political murder is moderate to very high (64%), while most ultra-Orthodox, religious and traditional Jews estimate that there are small or nonexistent chances of that happening (60%, 71% and 55%, respectively).

24%: Day of murder should not be marked

In another section of the survey, 70% of respondents said it was important to mark the anniversary of Yitzhak Rabin’s assassination, including 51.5% who said it was needed in order to renounce violence and strengthen unity among the people, and 18.5% who believe that the day of the murder should be marked in order to perpetuate the slain prime minister’s memory and legacy.

Twenty-four percent, on the other hand, believe that marking the anniversary of the murder is not important – 17.5% explained that the day was “biased and used for political purposes”, and 14.5% said they just don’t feel any solidarity. The remaining respondents offered no opinion on the matter.

An analysis of the results revealed that most secular, traditional and religious Jews view the memorial day as important (84%, 69% and 57%, respectively), while among haredim the most common response was that it was not important (46%).

Seventy-four percent of respondents said the murder’s anniversary should convey a message “denouncing any type of violence,” while 8% said it must focus on “advancing the peace process.” The rest of the respondents chose “other” or “I don’t know.”

In each of the groups – seculars, traditional Jews, religious Jews and haredim – the majority was in favor of the first option.

‘Haredim are the most hated public’

The Rabin assassination led to strong polarization and hatred within the Israeli society. According to the survey, 17 years after the murder, 57% of respondents believe that the ultra-Orthodox public is the most disliked, 13% said settlers top the list of hated sectors, 5% mentioned immigrants from the former Soviet Union, and 3.5% think that Tel Aviv residents are hated the most. The remaining respondents did pick a sector.

The estimate that ultra-Orthodox Jews are the most hated public is shared by all groups – from seculars to haredim.

And who is most responsible for the split in society?

Forty-one percent of respondents chose the media, 27% blamed politicians, 17% mentioned rabbis as responsible for polarization, and 4% pointed a finger at intellectuals. The others did not respond.

Most Haredi, religious and traditional Jews mentioned the media as responsible for the split (74%, 73% and 50%, respectively), while most seculars are divided between politicians (38%) and rabbis (31%).

The question concluding asked which sector contributes the most to the Israeli society. Twenty-three percent chose the settlers, 15% – kibbutz members, 7% – haredim, 7% – Tel Aviv residents, 6% – immigrants from the former Soviet Union, and 42% did not choose any sector.

An analysis of the results shows that the most common answer among haredim was that they are the ones who contribute the most to society (34%), religious and traditional Jews chose settlers (57% and 26%, respectively), and the seculars chose kibbutz members (23%).

Ilan Geal-Dor, CEO of the Gesher Foundation which works to bridge the gaps between different segments of the Israeli society, said in response to the poll that the process the Israeli society has been going through since the murder points to a development in the culture of dialogue.

“Although there is no real fear of another political murder, there are still rifts that should be mended. We at Gesher believe that society can be strengthened only through a dialogue between the different factions, which will strengthen a Jewish democratic country that gives room to a variety of opinions.”

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Gaza Under Attack: A Mother And Father from Gaza’s Tragedy: Son Matter Abu Atta Killed and Born

NOVANEWS

by occpal

 

A tragedy in Gaza…

The Father of the sons Abu Mattar Al Atta

On November 10, 2012 a mother and a father  in Gaza lost their son. Matter Abu Al-Atta was assassinated in a zionist attack on Gaza. He became 19 years old.  Within two hours after Matter was killed his mother overwhelmed by shock gave birth to his little brother.

They will never meet each other. Less than two hours in which two souls, two brothers of which one looses life and another sees life, but not long enough to see and enjoy each others presence…

At least not in this life.
They named him after his big brother: Mattar.



A photo of the little Mattar

May Allaah Subaha wa Ta’ala grant the mother and father and all their loved ones solace. Protect them and reward them with all blessings for all they had and have to suffer.

And may Allaah Azza wa Jal grant Shaheed Mattar eternal peace in Jannatul Firdaus. Peace, he never met in this world.

And may Allaah Subhana wa Ta’ala bless little Mattar with great emaan and sabr, guide us all so  we will be united. At last.

Allahumma Ameen ya Rabbil Alameen



A photo composition of the two brothers

Photo by Safa

Relatives and friends carry Shaheed Mattar Abu Atta to his grave to rest

Palestinians carry the body of Matar Abu Al-Atta killed the day before by an Israeli military attack, during his funeral in the al-Shoja’iya neighborhood east of Gaza City , November 11, 2012. In total 6 Palestinians were killed and more than 50 injured, some of them serious. Photo by: Anne Paq/Activestills.org

As the family mourns the loss of their (grand)son, brother, nephew…


Funeral of Palestinians killed by Israeli military attack, Gaza, 11.11,2012
Palestinian women relatives of Matar Abu Al-Atta, killed the day before by an Israeli military attack, mourn during his funeral in the al-Shoja’iya neighborhood east of Gaza City , November 11, 2012. In total 6 Palestinians were killed and more than 50 injured, some of them serious. Photo by: Anne Paq/Activestills.org

انّا للہ و انّا الیه راجعون
الله يرحم كل الشهداء
اللهم امين يا رب العالمين

A relative of Matar Abu Al-Atta, holding his newborn brother, born the night Matar was killed. (photo: Anne Paq / Activestills)

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HITLER & ZIONISM -1933 THE TRANSFER AGREEMENT

NOVANEWS

GILAD ATZMON

In an interview for Book TV, investigattive journalist Edwin Black talks about his extraordinary book, “The Transfer Agreement” and its 25th Anniversary republication.

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Assad to RT: ‘I’m not Western puppet – I live and die in Syria’

NOVANEWS

 

 

Is it a ‘civil war’ or just another Zio-driven interventionist war?

I also wonder why the BBC wouldn’t give a platform to this English speaking  state leader?

 

In an exclusive interview with RT, President Bashar Assad said that the conflict in Syria is not a civil war, but proxy terrorism by Syrians and foreign fighters. He also accused the Turkish PM of eyeing Syria with imperial ambitions.

Assad told RT that the West creates scapegoats as enemies – from communism, to Islam, to Saddam Hussein. He accused Western countries of aiming to turn him into their next enemy.

While mainstream media outlets generally report on the crisis as a battle between Assad and Syrian opposition groups, the president claims that his country has been infiltrated by numerous terrorist proxy groups fighting on behalf of other powers.

In the event of a foreign invasion of Syria, Assad warned, the fallout would be too dire for the world to bear.

 

‘My enemy is terrorism and instability in Syria’

RT: President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, thank very much for talking to us today.

Bashar Assad: You are most welcome in Damascus.

RT: There are many people who were convinced a year ago that you would not make it this far. Here again you are sitting in a newly renovated presidential palace and recording this interview. Who exactly is your enemy at this point?

BA: My enemy is terrorism and instability in Syria. This is our enemy in Syria. It is not about the people, it is not about persons. The whole issue is not about me staying or leaving. It is about the country being safe or not. So, this is the enemy we have been fighting as Syria.

RT: I have been here for the last two days and I had the chance to talk to a couple of people in Damascus. Some of them say that whether you stay or go at this point does not really matter anymore. What do you say about this?

BA: I think for the president to stay or leave is a popular issue. It is related to the opinion of some people and the only way can be done through the ballot boxes. So, it is not about what we hear. It is about what we can get through that box and that box will tell any president to stay or leave very simply.

RT: I think what they meant was that at this point you are not the target anymore; Syria is the target.

BA: I was not the target; I was not the problem anyway. The West creates enemies; in the past it was the communism then it became Islam, and then it became Saddam Hussein for a different reason. Now, they want to create a new enemy represented by Bashar. That’s why they say that the problem is the president so he has to leave. That is why we have to focus of the real problem, not to waste our time listening to what they say.

 

‘The fight now is not the president’s fight – it is Syrians’ fight to defend their country’

RT: Do you personally still believe that you are the only man who can hold Syria together and the only man who can put an end to what the world calls a ‘civil war’?

BA: We have to look at it from two aspects. The first aspect is the constitution and I have my authority under the constitution. According to this authority and the constitution, I have to be able to solve the problem. But if we mean it that you do not have any other Syrian who can be a president, no, any Syrian could be a president. We have many Syrians who are eligible to be in that position. You cannot always link the whole country only to one person.

RT: But you are fighting for your country. Do you believe that you are the man who can put an end to the conflict and restore peace?

BA: I have to be the man who can do that and I hope so, but it is not about the power of the President; it is about the whole society. We have to be precise about this. The president cannot do anything without the institutions and without the support of the people. So, the fight now is not a President’s fight; it is Syrians’ fight. Every Syrian is involved in defending his country now.

RT: It is and a lot of civilians are dying as well in the fighting. So, if you were to win this war, how would you reconcile with your people after everything that has happened?

BA: Let’s be precise once again. The problem is not between me and the people; I do not have a problem with the people because the United States is against me and the West is against me and many other Arab countries, including Turkey which is not Arab of course, are against me. If the Syrian people are against me, how can I be here?!

‘Syria faces not a civil war, but terrorism by proxies’

RT: They are not against you?

BA: If the whole world, or let us say a big part of the world, including your people, are against you, are you a superman?! You are just a human being. So, this is not logical. It is not about reconciling with the people and it is not about reconciliation between the Syrians and the Syrians; we do not have a civil war. It is about terrorism and the support coming from abroad to terrorists to destabilize Syria. This is our war.

RT: Do you still not believe it is a civil war because I know there are a lot who think that there are terrorist acts which everyone believes take place in Syria, and there are also a lot of sectarian-based conflicts. For example we all heard about the mother who has two sons; one son is fighting for the government forces and the other son is fighting for the rebel forces, how this is not a civil war?

BA: You have divisions, but division does not mean civil war. It is completely different. Civil wars should be based on ethnic problems or sectarian problems. Sometimes you may have ethnic or sectarian tensions but this do not make them problem. So, if you have division in the same family or in a bigger tribe or whatever or in the same city, it does not mean a civil war. This is completely different and that is normal. We should expect that.

RT: When I asked about reconciling with your people, this is what I meant: I heard you say on many different occasions that the only thing you care about is what the Syrian people think of you and what Syrian people feel towards you and whether you should be a president or not. Are you not afraid that there has been so much damage done for whatever reason that at the end of the day Syrians won’t care about the truth; they will just blame you for the carnage that they have suffered?

BA: This is a hypothetical question because what the people think is the right thing, and regarding what they think, we have to ask them. But I don’t have this information right now. So, I am not afraid about what some people think; I am afraid about my country. We have to be focused on that.

RT: For years there have been so many stories about almighty Syrian army, important and strong Syrian secret services, but then we see that, you know, the government forces are not able to crush the enemy like people expected it would, and we see terrorist attacks take place in the middle of Damascus almost every day. Were those myths about the Syrian army and about the strong Syrian secret services?

BA: Usually, in normal circumstances when you have the army and the secret services and the intelligence, we focus on the external enemy even if we have an internal enemy, like terrorism because the society is helping us at least not to provide terrorist’s incubator. Now in this case, it is a new kind of war; terrorism through proxies, either Syrians living in Syria or foreign fighters coming from abroad. So, it is a new style of war, this is first and you have to adapt to this style and it takes time, it is not easy. And to say this is as easy as the normal or, let us say, the traditional or regular war, no, it is much more difficult. Second, the support that has been offered to those terrorists in every aspect, including armaments, money and political aspect is unprecedented. So, you have to expect that it is going to be a tough war and a difficult war. You do not expect a small country like Syria to defeat all those countries that have been fighting us through proxies just in days or weeks.

RT: Yes, but when you look at it, I mean on one hand, you have one leader with an army, and he orders this army go straight, go left, go right and the army obeys. On the other hand, you have fractions of terrorists who are not unified and have no one unified strategy to fight you. So, how does that really happen when it comes to fighting each other?

BA: This is not the problem. The problem is that those terrorists are fighting from within the cities, and in the cities you have civilians. When you fight this kind of terrorists, you have to be aware that you should do the minimum damage to the infrastructure and minimum damage to the civilians because you have civilians and you have to fight, you cannot leave terrorists just killing and destroying. So, this is the difficulty in this kind of war.

Without foreign rebel fighters and smuggled weapons, ‘we could finish everything in weeks’

RT: You know that the infrastructure and economy are suffering; it is almost as if Syria is going to be fall into decay very soon and the time is against you. In your opinion, how much time do you need to crush the enemy?

BA: You cannot answer this question because no one claimed that he had the answer about when to end the war unless when we have the answer to when they are going to stop smuggling foreign fighters from different parts of the world especially the Middle East and the Islamic world, and when they are going to stop sending armaments to those terrorists. If they stop, this is when I can answer you; I can tell that in weeks we can finish everything. This is not a big problem. But as long as you have continuous supply in terrorists, armaments, logistics and everything else, it is going to be a long-term war.

RT: Also, when you think about it, you have 4,000 km of loosely controlled borders, so you have your enemy that can at any time cross over into Jordan or Turkey to be rearmed, get medical care and come back to fight you!

BA: No country in the world can seal the border. Sometime they use this word which is not correct, even the United Stated cannot seal its border with Mexico for example. The same can be applied to Russia which is a big country. So, no country can seal the border. You can only have a better situation on the border when you have good relations with your neighbor and this is something we do not have at least with Turkey now. Turkey supports more than any other country the smuggling of terrorists and armaments.

‘The Syrian Army has no orders to shell Turkish land’

RT: Can I say to you something? I have been in Turkey recently and people there are actually very worried that a war will happen between Syria and Turkey. Do you think a war with Turkey is a realistic scenario?

BA: Rationally, no I do not think so – for two reasons. The war needs public support and the majority of the Turkish people do not need this war. So, I do not think any rational official would think of going against the will of the public in his country and the same for the Syrian people. So, the conflict or difference is not between the Turkish people and the Syrian people; it is about the government and officials, it is between our officials and their officials because of their politics. So, I do not see any war between Syria and Turkey on the horizon.

RT: When was the last time you spoke to Erdogan and how did the talk end?

BA: May 2011, after he won the election.

RT: So, you just congratulated him, and it was the last time

BA: Yes and it was the last time.

RT: Who is shelling Turkey? Is it the government forces or the rebels?

BA: In order to find the answer, you need a joint committee between the two armies in order to know who shells who because on the borders you have a lot of terrorists who have mortars; so, they can do the same. You have to go and investigate the bomb in that place itself and that did not happen. We asked the Turkish government to have this committee but they refused; so, you cannot have the answer. But when you have these terrorists on your borders, you do not exclude them from doing so because the Syrian army does not have any order to shell the Turkish land because we do not find any interest in this, and we do not have any enmity with the Turkish people. We consider them as brothers, so why do it; unless that happened by mistake, then it needs investigation.

RT: Do you accept that it may be mistakenly from the government forces?

BA: That could happen. This is a possibility and in every war you have mistakes. You know in Afghanistan, they always talk about friendly fire if you kill your soldier; this means that it could happen in every war, but we cannot say yes.

‘Erdogan thinks he is a Caliph’

RT: Why has Turkey, which you call a friendly nation, become a foothold for the opposition?

BA: Not Turkey, but only Erdogan’s government in order to be precise. Turkish people need good relations with the Syrian people. Erdogan thinks that if Muslim Brotherhood takes over in the region and especially in Syria, he can guarantee his political future, this is one reason. The other reason, he personally thinks that he is the new sultan of the Ottoman and he can control the region as it was during the Ottoman Empire under a new umbrella. In his heart he thinks he is a caliph. These are the main two reasons for him to shift his policy from zero problems to zero friends.

RT: But it is not just the West that opposes you at this point; there are so many enemies in the Arab world and that is to say like two years ago when someone heard you name in the Arab world they would straighten their ties, and now in the first occasion they betrayed you, why do you have so many enemies in the Arab world?

BA: They are not enemies. The majority of Arab governments support Syria in their heart but they do not dare to say that explicitly.

RT: Why not?

BA: Under pressure by the West, and sometimes under pressure of the petrodollars in the Arab world.

RT: Who supports you from the Arab world?

BA: Many countries support Syria by their hearts but they do not dare to say that explicitly. First of all, Iraq which played a very active role in supporting Syria during the crisis because it is a neighboring country and they understand and recognize that if you have a war inside Syria you will have war in the neighboring countries including Iraq. I think there are other countries which have good position like Algeria, and Oman mainly and there are other countries I would not count all of them now but I would say they have positive position without taking actions.

RT: Saudi Arabia and Qatar, why are they so adamant about you resigning and how would an unstable Middle East fit their agenda?

BA: Let’s be frank, I cannot answer on their behalf. They have to answer this question but I could say that the problem between Syria and many countries whether in the Arab world or in the region or in the West, is that we kept saying no when we think that we have to say no, that is the problem. And some countries believe that they can control Syria through orders, through money or petrodollars and this is impossible in Syria, this is the problem. May be they want to play a role. We do not have a problem, they can play a role whether they deserve this or not, they can play a role but not to play a role at the expense of our interests.

RT: Is it about controlling Syria or about exporting their vision of Islam to Syria?

BA: You cannot put it as a government policy sometimes. Sometimes you have institutions in certain country, sometime you have persons who try to promote this but they do not announce it as an official policy. So, they did not ask us to promote their, let’s say, extremist attitude of their institutions but that happened in reality whether through indirect support of their government or through the foundation from institutions and personnel. So, this is part of the problem, but when I want to talk as a government, I have to talk about the announced policy. The announced policy is like any other policy; it is about the interest, it is about playing a role, but we cannot ignore what you mentioned.

RT: Iran which is a very close ally also is exposed to economic sanctions, also facing a threat of military invasion. If you were faced with an option to cut ties with Iran in exchange for peace in your country, would you go for it?

BA: We do not have contradicting options in this regard because we had good relations with Iran since 1979 till today, and it is getting better every day, but at the same time we are moving towards peace. We had peace process and we had peace negotiations. Iran was not a factor against peace. So, this is misinformation they try to promote in the West that if we need peace, we do not have to have good relation with Iran. There is no relation; it is two completely different subjects. Iran supported Syria, supported our cause, the cause of the occupied land and we have to support them in their cause. This is very simple. Iran is a very important country in the region. If we are looking for stability, we need good relations with Iran. You cannot talk about stability while you have bad relations with Iran, Turkey and your neighbors and so on. This is it.

‘Al-Qaeda’s final aim is an Islamic emirate in Syria’

RT: Do you have any information that the Western intelligence is financing rebel fighters here in Syria?

BA: No, so far what we know is that they are offering the know-how support for the terrorists through Turkey and sometimes through Lebanon mainly. But there is other intelligence, not the Western, but the regional intelligence which is very active and more active than the Western one under the supervision of the Western intelligence.

RT: What is the role of Al-Qaeda in Syria at this point? Are they controlling any of the rebel coalition forces?

BA: No, I do not think they are looking to control; they are looking to create their own kingdoms or emirates in their language, but they mainly try now to scare the people through explosions, assassinations, suicide bombers and things like this to push the people towards desperation and to accept them as reality. So, they go step by step but their final aim is to have this, let’s say, Islamic Emirate in Syria where they can promote their own ideology in the rest of the world.

RT: From those who are fighting you and those who are against you, who would you talk to?

BA: We talk to anyone who has genuine will to help Syria, but we do not waste our time with anyone who wants to use our crisis for his own personal interests.

RT: There has been many times…not you but the government forces have been accused for many times of war crimes against your own civilians, do you accept that the government forces have committed war crimes against their own civilians?

BA: We are fighting terrorism. We are implementing our constitution by protecting the Syrian people. Let’s go back to what happened in Russia more than a decade ago when you faced terrorism in Chechnya and other places; they attacked people in theaters and schools and so on, and the army in Russia protected the people, would you call it war crimes?! No, you would not. Two days ago, Amnesty International recognized the crimes that were committed few days ago by the armed groups when they captured soldiers and executed them. Also Human Rights Watch recognized this. Human Rights Watch recognized more than once the crimes of those terrorist groups and few days ago it described these crimes as war crimes, this is the first point. The second point, if you have an army that committed a crime against its own people, this is devoid of logic because the Syrian Army is made up of Syrian people. If you want to commit a crime against your people, then the army will divide, will disintegrate. So, you cannot have a strong army while you are killing your people. Third, the army cannot withstand for twenty months in these difficult circumstances without having the embrace of the public in Syria. So, how could you have this embracement while you are killing your people?! This is a contradiction. So, this is the answer.

‘I must live in Syria and die in Syria’

RT: When was the last time you spoke to a Western leader?

BA: It was before the crisis.

RT: Was there any time at which they try to give you conditions that if you left the post of presidency then there will be peace in Syria or no?

BA: No, they did not propose it directly, no, but whether they propose that directly or indirectly, it is a matter of sovereignty; only the Syrian people will talk about this. Whoever talks about this in the media or in a statement directly or indirectly has no meaning and has no weight in Syria.

RT: Do you even have a choice because from what it seems from the outside that would not have anywhere to go. Where would you go if you want to leave?

BA: To Syria. I would go from Syria to Syria. This is the only place where we can live. I am not a puppet. I was not made by the West to go to the West or to any other country. I am Syrian, I was made in Syria, I have to live in Syria and die in Syria.

 

‘I believe in democracy and dialogue – but we must be realistic’

RT: Do you think that at this point there is any chance for diplomacy or talks or only the army can get it done?

BA: I always believe in diplomacy and I always believe in dialogue even with those who do not understand or believe in it. We have to keep trying. I think that we will always achieve a partial success. We have to look for this partial success before we achieve the complete success. But we have to be realistic. You do not think that only dialogue can make you achieve something because those people who committed these acts they are of two kinds: one of them does not believe in dialogue, especially the extremists, and you have the outlaws who have been convicted by the court years ago before the crisis and their natural enemy is the government because they are going to be detained if we have a normal situation in Syria. The other part of them is the people who have been supplied by the outside, and they can only be committed to the governments which paid them the money and supplied them with the armament; they do not have a choice because they do not own their own decision. So, you have to be realistic. And you have the third part of the people whether militants or politicians who can accept the dialogue. That’s why we have been in this dialogue for months now even with militants and many of them gave up their armaments and they went back to their normal life.

‘The price of a foreign invasion will be more than the world can afford’

RT: Do you think a foreign invasion is imminent?

BA: I think the price of this invasion if it happened is going to be more than the whole world can afford because if you have a problem in Syria, and we are the last stronghold of secularism and stability in the region and coexistence, let’s say, it will have a domino effect that will affect the world from the Atlantic to the Pacific and you know the implication on the rest of the world. I do not think the West is going in that direction, but if they do so, nobody can tell what is next.

RT: Mr. President, do you blame yourself for anything?

BA: Normally you have to find mistakes you do with every decision, otherwise you are not human.

RT: What is your biggest mistake?

BA: I do not remember now to be frank. But I always, even before taking the decision, consider that part of it will be wrong but you cannot tell about your mistakes now. Sometimes, especially during crisis, you do not see what is right and what is wrong until you overcome the situation that you are in. I would not be objective to talk about mistakes now because we still in the middle of the crisis.

RT: So, you do not have regrets yet?

BA: Not now. When everything is clear, you can talk about your mistakes, and definitely you have mistakes and that is normal.

RT: If today was March 15, 2011, that is when the protest started to escalate and grow, what would you do differently?

BA: I would do what I did on March 15.

RT: Exactly the same?

BA: Exactly the same: ask different parties to have dialogue and stand against terrorists because that is how it started. It did not start as marches; the umbrella or cover was the marches, but within those marches you had militants who started shooting civilians and the army at the same time. May be on the tactical level, you could have done something different but as a president you are not tactical, you always take the decision on a strategic level which is something different.

RT: President al-Assad, how do you see yourself in ten-years’ time?

BA: I see myself through my country; I cannot see myself but my country in ten-years’ time. This is where I can see myself.

RT: Do you see yourself in Syria?

BA: Definitely, I have to be in Syria. It is not about the position. I do not see myself whether a president or not. This is not my interest. I can see myself in this country as safe country, stable country and more prosperous country.

RT: President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, thank you for talking to RT.

BA: Thank you for coming to Syria, again.

Posted in SyriaComments Off on Assad to RT: ‘I’m not Western puppet – I live and die in Syria’

IsraHell ‘may launch ground invasion into Gaza’

NOVANEWS
 

Nazi regime may launch a ground invasion into Gaza, Benjamin Naziyahu has indicated, after a weekend of escalating cross border violence.

By lunchtime on Sunday, more than 70 rockets and mortars had landed in Israel from Gaza within 24 hours, leaving six Palestinians killed and eight Israelis injured.

At a cabinet meeting on Sunday morning, Mr Netanyahu, the Israeliprime minister, said: “The world needs to understand that Israel will not sit idly by in the face of attempts to attack us. We are prepared to intensify the response.”

One unnamed senior Israeli government official, said: “A ground incursion is certainly not out of the question although we hope it won’t come to that.”

The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) has confirmed that it is expecting, at the very least, instruction to intensify its campaign of air strikes on Hamas targets.

Commentators have pointed out similarities between this weekend’s violence and the last incursion into Gaza in 2008, when Ehud Olmert was drawn into an operation three months before losing elections to Mr Netanyahu. Israel again goes to the polls next January.

In a separate incident on the same day, a 12 year-old Palestinian boy playing football was killed by fire from an Israeli tank, having been caught in an exchange of fire with Palestinian militants.

In an act of retribution, an anti-tank missile fired from the northern Gaza Strip blew up an IDF jeep patrolling the border fence. Four Israeli soldiers were injured in the blast.

Israel responded by targeting several militant munition stores and rocket launch sites, while a funeral tent outside Gaza City was also hit, killing four Palestinian civilians including two teenage boys.

Violent exchanges consistently erupt along the Israel-Gaza border every few months but usually abate within days. In recent weeks, however, Hamas has shifted its focused to Israeli targets inside Israeli territory.

“Sometimes it looks as if they are trying to shake the status quo, pushing us to check our response. Every time, they push a little further,” a senior Israeli military official said

“Several Israeli soldiers have now been badly injured. I don’t think the government or the Israeli people are prepared to accept this.”

The Hamas leadership in Gaza, meanwhile, has issued a unified called to arms.

“The occupation’s targeting of civilians was a grave escalation that must not pass in silence. Resistance must be reinforced in order to block [Israeli] aggression,” said Fawzi Barhoum, the party’s spokesman.

Separately, Israeli troops fire warning shots into Syria on Sunday in response to mortar fire, the first Israeli fire directed at the Syrian military in the Golan Heights area since the 1973 war.

Posted in ZIO-NAZIComments Off on IsraHell ‘may launch ground invasion into Gaza’

Obama and the IsraHell lobby: Quo vadis?

NOVANEWS

walt.foreignpolicy.com

Has AIPAC lost its mojo? Does Obama’s reelection prove that the Israel lobby is getting weaker, and that he can return to Middle East peacemaking with new confidence and resolve? It’s no secret that Obama has a frosty relationship with Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, fueling GOP hopes that Israel would be a wedge issue that would attract lots of Jewish voters and donors. At least one prominent hardline Zionist, Sheldon Adelson, spent tens of millions of dollars trying to buy the election for Romney, and he got bupkis for all that cash. So now that Obama’s got a second term, will he blithely ignore AIPAC et al and pursue an even-handed approach to the Middle East peace process?

Don’t bet on it. For starters, the election didn’t show that the traditional “status quo lobby” was substantially weaker. Why? Because Obama caved to these groups a long time ago, and there was hardly any daylight between him and Romney on this issue. As the Obama campaign repeatedly emphasized, they had been extraordinarily supportive of Israel from Day One: providing increased levels of military aid, expanding various forms of security cooperation (including joint operations against Iran), and providing diplomatic cover in the United Nations and elsewhere.

Obama dropped his early insistence on a settlement freeze and eventually gave up on the peace process. The only thing that Netanyahu didn’t get from Obama was a war against Iran, and plenty of top Israeli officials didn’t think that was a very good idea either. Given that there wasn’t much difference between Obama and Romney on Israel, therefore, American Jewry stuck with its long-standing liberal preferences and voted overwhelmingly for Obama and the Democrats.

But the election is over, and the second term beckons. Won’t Obama be tempted to secure a legacy as a peacemaker (remember that Nobel Prize?), and go back to his original vision of “two states for two peoples?” I don’t think so. Conditions in the region aren’t propitious: Israel continues to drift rightward, Netanyahu is overwhelmingly likely to be reelected, and the tumult of the Arab spring is bound to make everyone more cautious (and with good reason).

The Palestinian Authority is less and less popular, and even if he wanted to, Mahmoud Abbas could never persuade his followers to accept the one-sided Bantustan arrangement that is Netanyahu’s idea of a“Palestinian state.” Obama doesn’t have to run for re-election again but Congressional Dems do, and they’ll put the same pressure on him in 2014 that they did in 2010 if he tries to force Netanyahu to abandon his vision of “greater Israel.” The bottom line: No U.S. pressure on Israel, and thus no chance for a deal.

If you’re Barack Obama, in short, this just doesn’t look like a smart place to invest a lot of time, effort, and political capital. Plus, my hunch is that he’s going to try to secure his legacy by “nation-building” here at home, not by pursuing the elusive grail of Middle East peace. For that matter, if he decides to spend any political capital in that part of the world, it will be on Iran, not Israel-Palestine. Meanwhile, Congress will reflexively vote the aid package and sign whatever goofy letters and resolutions that AIPAC dreams up. Politicians and policy wonks will continue to pay homage to the “special relationship,” lest they come under fire from the lobby and its various watchdogs and smear artists.

Which is not to say that nothing has changed, as Steve Rosen argues here. Public discourse on this topic is more open than it used to be, some journalists have become largely immune to intimidation, and the role of the lobby in stifling peace efforts and promoting a military approach to Iran is now plain for all to see. J Street has been more equivocal than some of us might have hoped, but it can take some pride in helping escort Islamophobes from office and getting some pro-peace candidates elected. Writers like Peter Beinart have bravely spoken truth to those with closed minds and closed eyes, and even some stalwart defenders of Israel seem increasingly troubled by where it’s headed.

But I don’t see a sea-change; at least not yet. AIPAC and its allies don’t get everything they want, of course, but they can still put real limits on what the president and his advisors are willing to try. We still have not reached the point where politicians are willing to openly acknowledge that a normalrelationship would be better for both countries than the current special relationship of unconditional U.S. support.

You didn’t hear Obama, Romney, or any other major candidate say anything like that in 2012, which tells you that fear of the lobby remains a potent political force. That’s not good for us, but it’s even worse for Israelis and Palestinians. Which is why I’d be delighted if the next four years proves me wrong.   

Posted in USAComments Off on Obama and the IsraHell lobby: Quo vadis?

Zio-Nazi PM briefs foreign ambassadors on possible Gaza ground operation to ‘reassert IsraHell deterrence’

NOVANEWS

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton calls on both sides ‘to refrain from exacerbating the situation,’ hails Egyptian mediation efforts

timesofisrael.com

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday started taking steps to shore up international support for a possible military ground operation into Gaza that would aim to quell the ongoing rocket fire from the strip.

“The world must understand that Israel has the right and obligation to defend its citizens,” he told some 50 ambassadors in Ashkelon.

“We will not sit idly in front of recurrent attacks that occur almost daily, against our citizens and our children. “More than one million citizens have to live in a reality where within 15 or 30 seconds they need to find shelter against terrorists who shoot at civilians, while the terrorists themselves hide behind civilians. That’s a double war crime. None of your governments would accept such a situation. We do not accept such a situation,and I as prime minister of Israel am not prepared to accept this situation, and we will act to stop it.”

The rocket fire continued for a third day Monday, albeit initially at a slower pace; as of early Monday afternoon, some 150 rockets and mortar shells had hit Israel since Saturday. Twenty-six people were treated for shock after a direct hit on a home in Netivot on Monday morning.

“Netanyahu wants to make sure that the international community will understand the reasons if Israel is forced to act,” a government official said Monday ahead of the prime minister’s meeting with the senior diplomats.

The government official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, neither denied nor confirmed reports that Israel was planning a ground invasion into Gaza. “Different options are being looked at,” he told The Times of Israel. “It’s more than possible that there will be a need to reassert Israeli deterrence,” the official said.

Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar said Sunday that an extensive ground operation for Gaza was being planned.

Meanwhile, European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said she condemned the firing of rockets and mortars into Israel and called on both sides “to refrain from exacerbating the situation.”

“Further regrettable loss of life and injury must be avoided. I support the mediation efforts by Egypt and reiterate that there is no place for violence in the Middle East. It is only through resumed negotiations that the legitimate aspirations of both Palestinians and Israelis will be met, through a two-state solution,” Ashton said in a statement.

The French Foreign Ministry similarly condemned the rocket fire into Israel and called, asking both sides to exercise ” great restraint to avoid any additional escalation.”

During Sunday’s weekly cabinet meeting, Netanyahu said Israel was prepared to “intensify” its response to the ongoing rocket fire. “The IDF is operating, and will operate, aggressively against the terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip, which are taking heavy blows from the IDF. The world needs to understand that Israel will not sit idly by in the face of attempts to attack us. We are prepared to intensify the response

Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Israel would not hesitate to reenter Gaza: “If we are forced to go back into Gaza in order to deal Hamas a [serious] blow and restore security for all of Israel’s citizens, then we will not hesitate to do so.”

Posted in ZIO-NAZI1 Comment

Nazi regime fires at Syria for 2nd straight day

NOVANEWS
Zio-Nazi military says it has fired into Syria for a second straight day in response to errant mortar fire that landed in the Zio-Nazi-controlled Golan Heights.

There were no reports of injuries on either side of the frontier Monday. But a series of similar incidents in recent days has raised fears that the Nazi regime could be dragged into the fighting in its northern neighbor.

Nazi officials have warned that they will respond harshly if the attacks persist.

Posted in ZIO-NAZI, SyriaComments Off on Nazi regime fires at Syria for 2nd straight day

A Covert Affair: Petraeus Caught in the Honeypot?

NOVANEWS

The outing of Gen. David Petraeus as an adulterer, and his subsequent resignation as CIA Director, was carried out by an unknown FBI “whistleblower” who leaked the facts of the FBI investigation into the General’s private life to Rep. Eric Cantor. TheNew York Times reports:

Eric Cantor, the House majority leader, said Saturday an F.B.I. employee whom his staff described as a whistle-blower told him about Mr. Petraeus’s affair and a possible security breach in late October, which was after the investigation had begun.

“’I was contacted by an F.B.I. employee concerned that sensitive, classified information may have been compromised and made certain Director Mueller was aware of these serious allegations and the potential risk to our national security,’ Mr. Cantor said in a statement.

Mr. Cantor talked to the person after being told by Representative Dave Reichert, Republican of Washington, that a whistle-blower wanted to speak to someone in the Congressional leadership about a national security concern. On Oct. 31, his chief of staff, Steve Stombres, called the F.B.I. to tell them about the call.”

The FBI probe apparently started in late spring, when several people associated with Petraeus — not just the one woman, as has been reported elsewhere — received harassing emails. The emails were traced to 40-year-old Paula Broadwell, national security analyst, military intelligence veteran, and author of a biography of Petraeus. Authorities believed his email account may have been hacked, and this led to a remarkable irony: the CIA chief’s emails were monitored, without his knowledge, whereupon it was discovered Broadwell may have either had access to his account or tried to obtain access. In any case, in the course of their spying, FBI monitors discovered a large volume of emails to and from Broadwell. Looking for evidence of a security breach, all they found was evidence of a “human drama,” as one anonymous FBI official put it: an illicit affair between Petraeus and Broadwell.

Petraeus was only informed of the investigation on October 25 or 26. So here we have the astonishing fact of the CIA’s head honcho being spied on for a period of months by our own law enforcement officials.

Or maybe it wasn’t a simple case of complaints about “harassing” or threatening emails. Fox News avers:

The FBI had been investigating an unrelated and much broader case before stumbling on the affair. Fox News has learned that during the course of this investigation, the name of biographer Paula Broadwell came up. The FBI followed that lead and in doing so, uncovered his affair with her.”

What was this “much broader case”? Almost certainly it was a counterintelligence investigation, i.e. a pushback against efforts by some foreign entity to penetrate or otherwise compromise US secrets. We can only guess at the specifics, however we do know that in the course of that investigation Broadwell’s name “came up.”

On the surface, at least, Broadwell is not the sort of person whose name would come up in a counterintelligence investigation: a West Point graduate, where she earned degrees in political geography and systems engineering, she seems like the veritable embodiment of All-American
red-white-and-blue super-patriotism. This biographical account on her high school website says

Paula pursued a military intelligence career abroad, serving in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. During her service, especially after 9-11, Paula’s intensity was directed toward the war against terror; her contributions and efforts to thwart terrorism have been commended by the U.S. Army and by Europe’s Special Operations Forces Commanding General. In this arena, she has planned counter-terrorism initiatives presented to NATO and worked on transnational counter-terrorism issues with foreign and domestic agencies, U.S. Special Forces, and the FBI.”

Graduate studies at the University of Denver in Middle East studies enabled her to travel to “Jordan and Israel,” and make a swing through the Persian Gulf and Europe where she spoke at various conferences. This triumphal tour was capped by a Harvard fellowship “for study in Syria and Iran.”

While Broadwell’s current academic affiliation is with Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, her previous post was deputy director of the Jebsen Center for Counter-Terrorism Studies at Tufts University’s Fletcher School. The Center, according to its self-description, “distinguishes itself by a philosophy that maintains counter-terrorism should be predictive, preventive and preemptive, with the latter being a last resort.” Founded in 2005, the Jebsen Center was made possible by the generous donation of one Jan Henrik Jebsen, heir to the Norwegian shipping fortune, who gave $1.3 million to set it up. Jebsen, a former investment banker with Lazard Freres, is the principal of Gamma Applied Visions Group, an international octopus with tentacles all over the place: part arms dealer and weapons developer, part green” energy company. As one might expect from someone who has so much of his multi-billion dollar fortune invested in making and selling armaments, Jebsen is on the board of directors of the distinctly warlike Hudson Institute, where Scooter LibbyDouglas FeithMichael Ledeen, and practically every neocon you’ve ever heard of have found refuge.

While, in true neocon fashion, Hudson scholars conjure a wide diversity of imminent “threats” to the US, including China and Russia, their main focus is the threat of Islamist radicalism, especially as it impacts Israel. Indeed, Hudson operates inside Israel, where it pushes the far-rightist views of the most extreme elements in Israeli society: the settler movement, and the faction of Likud angling for war with Iran. It has also focused its attention on purging universities of academics who don’t toe the right-wing ultra-nationalist Likudnik line.

More recently, former Hudson president and “trustee emeritus” Max Singer — who has since moved to Israel, where, as a “public policy consultant” at Bar Ilan University, he spends his time inciting violence against Palestinians — is on a mission to protect Israel from the alleged threat posed by the President of the United States.

The Jebsen Center has been equally useful to the neocons. Richard H. Schultz, head of Tufts’ International Studies program (of which the Center is a part) was a signatory to the Project for a New American Century’s “open letter” to President Bush urging war with Iraq and a number of other Middle Eastern actors in the wake of 9/11. Here he isrecommending the importation of Israeli “anti-terrorist” techniques to pacify the restless natives of Iraq. Here is another Jebsen Center scholar describing alleged terrorist actions engaged in by Iran worldwide. And then there’s the testimony of this guy:

The idea of overthrowing the Iranian government through covert but peaceful means is not original. The project was first brought to my attention in August 2006 when I worked as an intern research assistant at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Diplomacy’s Jebsen Center for Counter-terrorism. I worked for the then director of the center Brigadier General Russell Howard (Ret.) on a project titled Bringing Down Iran Without Firing A Shot.

I wasn’t very experienced in the world of covert operations in the field or in the academic realm but I was very interested in becoming involved in it. General Howard, on the other hand, was not only a counter-terrorism strategist but a veteran Special Forces officer, an academic, and a tutor. It was General Howard who introduced me to the idea of targeting factors specific to Iran in order to adapt to the country’s specific needs. He had six factors which he believed were important: The military use of ongoing insurgencies within Iran, political strife, economic strife, declining oil revenues, demographics, and deteriorating infrastructure.”

Interestingly, in November of 2006, during her tenure at the Jebsen Center, Broadwell led a group of Fletcher School students on a trip to New York City to meet with then Iranian UN representative Javad Zarif. Both are alumni of the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver.

All this establishes a context that goes far beyond the titillating details of the alleged affair between Petraeus and Broadwell — and this is no doubt what set alarm bells ringing in the intelligence community when it was revealed. Is there really any need to point out the uses of the honeypot in intelligence-gathering and other covert activities regularly engaged in by spooks of all nations? From Mata Hari to the Mossad agent who lured Israeli nuclear scientist Mordecahi Vanunu, sex is a time-honored weapon in the war of spy-vs-spy. A secret affair with the CIA Director is the equivalent of the Honeypot Olympics, and we have to ask: was the remarkably fit Ms. Broadwell a lure? If so, she’s won a Gold Medal.

Broadwell’s actions — sending emails that were bound to be traced back to her — appear to make little sense on the surface. But if the goal of luring a 60-year-old geezer into an affair with a much younger woman was to expose him, and get him fired, then surely her antics succeeded in accomplishing that goal.

So who would have an interest in getting rid of Petraeus? Here’s where the Cantor connection comes in. The tip by an anonymous “FBI employee” that wound up in Cantor’s office two weeks ago came through Rep. David Reichert, Republican of Washington state, who has a friend who knows the whistleblower. Cantor then spoke to the whistleblower directly, who put him in touch with FBI Director Mueller.

Cantor is a great friend of Israel, and Petraeus — not so much. The General was attacked, as you’ll recall, by partisans of the Lobby, including Abe Foxman, when he delivered testimony before Congress citing Israel as a strategic liability in the Middle East. As the executor of the new Obamaite policy of sidling up to Islamists, not only in Libya but also in Syria and Egypt, Petraeus was no doubt seen by the Israelis as an enemy to be neutralized.

Broadwell’s affiliation with the Jebsen Center, and the Center’s connection to the neoconservative network, sets the scene: a young, attractive woman with impeccable national security credentials throws herself at Petraeus, and he takes the bait. Whether she’s been recruited by a foreign intelligence agency at this point or not is irrelevant: he’s already put himself in a vulnerable position, and there are any number of actors on the international stage more than willing to press their advantage.

Will we ever know the full story? At this point, the story is so hot that it may burn the cover story — “it’s all about sex” — right off the wrapper. Because there’s more — a lotmore — here than meets the eye. When Cantor pledged to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he and his fellow Republicans “will serve as a check on the administration” in regard to the President’s policy toward Israel, he was clearly aligning himself with a foreign leader against American interests as perceived by the White House. But would he really go this far — deliberately taking down a key figure, one beloved by Republicans, in order to keep his promise to Netanyahu?

Stay tuned to this space, because this story is moving fast….

NOTES IN THE MARGIN

Our regular winter fundraising drive starts on Monday, and I am literally shaking in my boots. If we don’t make it , the future of Antiwar.com will be very much in doubt. Antiwar.com has been in crisis mode ever since the Great Recession set in. We’ve been hanging by our fingernails, financially, and had to let go of two of our valued employees in the past few months — just in order to survive. Have you ever had to proofread your own work? That’s what I have to do now, and let me tell you, it ain’t easy.

We have less people, less resources — and more work to do than ever before. With Obama reelected, many people think they can just sit back and relax. NOT TRUE! Indeed, we’ll see the real Obama soon enough, as we did in Libya — and Iran still looms large, with the threat of war hanging over our heads as never before.

He doesn’t need your votes or support anymore — so it’s deuces wild, folks.

Posted in USAComments Off on A Covert Affair: Petraeus Caught in the Honeypot?

British Army Chief: Deploying Troops to Syria Being Constantly Considered

NOVANEWS

Insists Deployment Would Be ‘Limited’

In an interview today with BBC1, British Army Chief of Staff General Sir David Richards said that the military is “continually” working on different plans for military intervention in Syria, raising the prospect of direct British military involvement.

Sir David suggested that theprimary goal right now of British foreign policy was to keep the Syrian Civil War from spilling across any borders, so the most likely deployments would be along the Syrian border as a sort of quarantining measure.

They might deploy inside Syria, however, nominally on humanitarian grounds. He insisted any deployment would be “limited” and that the military would be “very cautious” about getting too deeply involved in the ugly civil war.

The general also discussed the possibility of attacking Iran, saying that so long as Prime Minister David Cameron keeps “all options” on the table related to Iran that the military is obliged to prepare for the possibility he’s going to up and order an attack some day. Sir David seemed even less interested in this war, however, saying an attack on Iran was “fraught with risk.”

Posted in Syria, UKComments Off on British Army Chief: Deploying Troops to Syria Being Constantly Considered

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