Archive | October 25th, 2015

I$raHell Killing Machine: “Bloody Friday” in Palestine

NOVANEWS
Global Research
repression palestine

Israel’s killing machine raged on Friday, continuing into Saturday. The Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said Israeli forces wounded over 290 Palestinians yesterday alone, many seriously – 48 from live fire, 44 using rubber-coated steel bullets.

Hundreds suffered from toxic tear gas inhalation. Maan News said “Israeli forces used Palestine TV reporter and cameraman Sira Sarhan and Hadi al-Dibs as human shields…forcing them at gunpoint to remain in front of their Jeep and tell protesters to stop throwing rocks.”

French journalist David Perrotin was brutally assaulted by Jewish Defense League Zionist zealots outside AFP’s Paris headquarters. He was beaten with batons.

Lunatics involved tried storming AFP’s building, waving Israeli flags, throwing eggs, chanting: “We’re coming to get you.”

One agitator raved:

“We are here to show support for Israel in our war against the Arabs. Journalists working for organizations like AFP support the Islamic terrorists and that’s why we have to fight back.”

Friday night, Perrotin twittered he’s OK. He thanked everyone expressing support.

On October 21, Luay Faisal Ali Abeid stood on his third floor balcony, displaying no weapon, threatening no one. No clashes were ongoing in the area around his home.

An Israeli soldier opened fire at him without just cause, a rubber-coated steel bullet fracturing his skull and nose, striking his left eye. Surgeons couldn’t save it. They had to operate to remove it.

On Saturday, an Israeli security guard murdered a Palestinian teenager in cold blood. He was unarmed threatening no one.

Palestinian medical workers said Israel prevented help from reaching him. He was shot at least five times. Overnight Friday intoSaturday morning, dozens of Palestinians were kidnapped – in East Jerusalem, Jenin, Abu Dis, Qabatia and Bethlehem.

Western and Israeli media reports are entirely one-sided. Palestinians are portrayed as knife-wielding terrorists. Most reports are fabricated. The few legitimate ones are blown way out of proportion.

Rampaging Israeli forces and extremist settlers are considered noble defenders. Al Monitor said “(t)he Obama administration is cutting aid to the Palestinians by $80 million in what congressional sources describe as a ‘message’ to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.”

It’s being reduced from $370 million to $290 million for the fiscal year ending September 30 – following criticism from congressional members, blaming Palestinians for vicious Israeli incitement and premeditated persecution over the past three weeks.

Zionist zealot Rep. Eliot Engel (D. NY) said “(w)e need to dial up pressure on Palestinian officials to repudiate this violence.” On October 22, House Foreign Affairs Committee members voted unanimously to punish Palestinians for Israeli high crimes.

Practically the entire Congress one-sidedly supports Israel, no matter how outrageous its crimes – nothing worse than cold-blooded murder, defenseless Palestinians outrageously blamed.

AIPAC demands an end to “Palestinian incitement…Palestinian terrorists are attacking Israelis,” it rants.

“Palestinian leaders…exacerbated tensions,” instead of accurately saying it’s the other way around, Israel entirely responsible, being rewarded by Washington with hundreds of millions more in military aid – supporting its killing machine to spill more blood.

“Palestinians must renew direct peace talks with Israel (to achieve) a real and lasting peace,” claims AIPAC – ignoring reality on the ground.

Israel and Washington deplore peace and stability, thrive on endless violence, at all times blame victims for their viciousness.

So-called peace initiatives are dead on arrival every time. They’re a waste of time, Palestinians always wrongfully blamed for failure.

Daily NYT reports provide cover for Israeli high crimes. Not a word on horrific Friday’s Israeli-instigated violence on defenseless Palestinians explained above.

Instead headlined “Jewish Man Stabbed in Israel by Palestinians as Violence Continues,” blaming them for an ongoing “wave of violence.”

The entire article highlights claims about Jewish victims, Palestinian terrorists, attackers, assailants. The latest Times propaganda piece cited Israel saying a “Palestinian stabber (was) shot dead.”

No Israelis were harmed. No weapons were found. Another accusation repeats the same Big Lie about violent Palestinians, poor Israeli victims. It’s hard believing this stuff gets printed – maliciously and willfully turning truth on its head.

Sources are always government or military officials, past or current ones, mostly unnamed, repeating the same old Big Lie, long ago discredited by legitimate news reports and analysts.

Israeli state terror, fully supported by Washington and rogue allies, bears full responsibility for ongoing, earlier and certain future violence against defenseless Palestinian victims.

The Times and other media scoundrels never report what everyone needs to know. Israel’s war on Palestinians continues with no resolution in prospect.

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Myanmar’s Protracted Civil War: Drawn-Out Peace Or Battle Lines Drawn?

NOVANEWS
Myanmar

Myanmar passed an historic milestone on 15 October, signing into effect what its government terms to be a “Nationwide Ceasefire Accord” (NCA) between itself and eight ethnically centered rebel organizations. As positive of a step as this may notionally be towards resolving the world’s longest-running civil war, it’s substantially without a solid backbone, as at least seven of the country’s strongest rebel formations followed opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi’sadvice in taking their time and refusing to sign.

With the nationwide elections just under one month away, it’s obvious that the NCA will become the most polarizing electioneering tool for both the government and the opposition, with each side evoking the agreement as a means of further ingratiating themselves with their respective bases, both majority Burmese and ethnically affiliated. Whether the NCA leads to a drawn-out peace and eventual settlement or has contrarily drawn the new battle lines for an upcoming explosion of civil war depends entirely on the results of the election and the reaction of both sides, but from the looks of things, it appears as though Myanmar is in for a very rocky and polarized future.

Part I begins by expounding upon the details of the NCA and the military and political factors that guided each side’s position relative to the agreement. Afterwards, it examines the intricacies of the strategic geography present in the country after the NCA’s signing and analyzes the inherent incompatibility of both blocs’ nationwide objectives. Finally, the last two sections wrap everything up by forecasting the three most likely scenarios to result from these conflicting national contrarieties, eventually concluding that there’s a disturbingly real risk that India and China might get sucked into the conflagration and enter into a destabilizing proxy war against the other.

Making History

On paper at least, the NCA is an historic document for Myanmar, and the attendance of representatives from China, India, Japan, and Thailand to oversee its signing testifies to the international optimism that key players have about its significance. Each of the groups that are party to the agreement are removed from the government’s list of illegal organizations and are now allowed to enter mainstream politics, importantly just in time to participate in the upcoming elections. The next step of the process takes place at the end of November, 40 days from the ceasefire’s signing, by which all sides must agree to a code of conduct and a joint monitoring committee.

It’s thus no wonder that the government had prioritized the conclusion of the NCA prior to the elections, since it gives each of the rebel groups a stake in the process and the country’s immediate stability afterwards. The reason this is important is because the country might be rocked by renewed unrest if Suu Kyi and her followers opt for a 21st-century repeat of their last Color Revolution attempt from the 1980s and/or encourage the resumption of full-scale civil war if her National League for Democracy (NLD) party underperforms at the ballot. Here’s a listing of which groups have and haven’t agreed to the NCA (as for the latter, including those that were kept outside the process), and they can respectively be categorized by whether their loyalty is to the government or the opposition:

Signatories (Pro-Government) Non-Signatories (Opposition)
* All-Burma Students’ Democratic Front * Arakan Army
* Arakan Liberation Party * Kachin Independence Organization
* Chin National Front * Karenni Natl. Progressive Party
* Democratic Karen Benevolent Army * Lahu Democratic Union
* Karen Natl. Lib. Army – Peace Council * Myanmar Natl. Democratic Alliance Army
* Karen National Union * Natl. Soc. Council of Nagaland – Khaplang
* Pa-O National Liberation Organization * New Mon State Party
* Shan State Army – South * Ta’ang National Liberation Army
* United Wa State Army

It All Comes Down To The Guns

The most important determinant over whether a group signed the NCA or not appears to its military strength, as the weaker groups aligned with the government while the more powerful ones refused to budge. For example, the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) and United Wa State Army are the strongest insurgent groups in the country, while the All-Burma Students’ Democratic Front is scarcely a force and the hodgepodge of Karen militants have been weakened by in-fighting over the years. The situation with the National Socialist Council of Nagaland – Khaplang (NSCN-K) is a bit different, in the sense that the government may not have wanted to be seen as fully accommodating a group that the Indian government recognizes as a terrorist organization, which might explain why it didn’t bend over backwards to get it to sign. Additionally, the NSCN-K, while likely having its own interests in possibly agreeing to the NCA, is also tightly connected to the KIO that flat-out refused to sign the accord, so in a tactical sense, it was much more advantageous for it to stay outside of the agreement anyhow. That being said, this decision is forecast to have a strong impact on future events, and the analysis will return to it in a forthcoming section.

Fighting For Different Futures

Each of the rebel groups would like to increase their respective ethnicity’s share of power in the country, feeling that they’ve been left out of the economic and political loop for far too long. The difference over ends, however, comes down to which side they’ve now aligned themselves with, which as was just explained, is primarily due to whether the said group was strong enough to resist the government or not. Those that are now associated with the authorities through their cooperation in the NCA are in support of retaining Myanmar’s unitary nature, as Naypyidaw does not seem willing to flip-flop anytime soon on its decades-long stance of anti-federalization. Given that the nominally civilian-led (but heavily military-influenced) administration is “reforming” the country, it’s conceivable that it might allow some degree of autonomy for minority-majority areas if it absolutely has to, but it would definitely fall short of the federalist structure that the NLD opposition and its allies would like to see enter into practice.

That’s the primary and irreconcilable difference between the two sides, as the government is adamant in preserving the unitary state, while the opposition wants to dismember it into largely independent and resource-rich ‘ethnic reserves’. In fact, out of the 11 groups that constitute the United Nationalities Federal Council, a pan-rebel alliance of pro-federalist entities, only three of them (the Karen National Union, Chin National Front, and Pa-O National Liberation Organization) ‘defected’ to the government by signing the NCA, with the remaining eight unyielding in their pursuit of Suu Kyi’s federalist agenda. As mentioned above, it’s the weaker groups that ‘crossed the aisle’, so to speak, so the central government simply gained symbolic allies while the federalists still retained the lion’s share of their strength. The non-signatories can thus leverage their considerable military potential in the event that civil war erupted once more, especially if they were to more formally ally with one another and coordinate their activities, potentially under Suu Kyi’s stewardship.

Strategic Positioning

mmap

The easiest way to make sense of Myanmar’s political complexities and forecast their likely progression is to physically map out as many of the factors as possible:

Key

* Red – government-controlled areas, either through direct administration or NCA rebel alliance

* Blue – anti-government rebel-controlled areas

* Black Dots – Myanmar’s three SEZs, from north to south they are Kyak Phyu, Thilawa, and Dawei

* Yellow Dot – The capital of Naypyidaw

* White Line – China-Myanmar oil and gas pipelines

* Lavender Line – India-Thailand Highway

Red

The above map presents the clearest way for one to understand the present status of forces in Myanmar, and it was drawn from the NCA information listed at the beginning of the analysis. The government has control over a strategic corridor stretching from the northwest to the southeast, with the lynchpins being Chin State (the one just north of blue-striped Rakhine State [“Rohingyaland”]) and Kayin State (the elongated province directly south of the three blue ones), both of which are marked red due to their primary rebel groups’ participation in the NCA. The result is that Naypyidaw controls enough territory so as to secure the newly operational India-Thailand Highway that’s expected to become a major economic artery for its future growth, and the vast majority of the country’s population (and thus, laborers) falls under its jurisdiction. Furthermore, two of the country’s SEZs are also safely under its control as well, meaning that Myanmar could realistically maintain the astronomical growth rates that have made it the fourth-fastest growing economy, with or without regaining full sovereignty over the rebel periphery.

Blue

The pro-federalization rebels not party to the NCA are concentrated mostly in the northeast Kachin and Shan States along the Chinese border, and some reports argue that a few of the groups might be under the influence of China. Whether or not this is true is a cause for considerable debate, as China stands to lose a lot more than it gains by indefinitely prolonging a state of instability along its borders, especially since its geostrategic oil and gas pipelines pass through rebel territory. Furthermore, as witnessed at the beginning of the year during the Kokang Rebellion (led by the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army, not a member of the NCA), stray shells fell into Chinese territory, creating an international scandal for which the Myanmar military later had to apologize and admit responsibility. It’s these types of chaotic situations that China definitely doesn’t want along its southern border, especially as the US seeks to exploit any and all available opportunities (and well as create its own) so as to offset Beijing’s influence in Greater Southeast Asia (of which its Myanmar-bordering Yunnan Province is geographically a part of).

Reverting back to a more domestic analysis about the non-government-controlled areas, they’re short on population but rich in natural resources, and therein lay the reason behind their federalization aspirations. They believe that they can acquire formidable wealth if their tiny native population didn’t have to share their resources’ riches with the rest of the country, siphoned out by the central government’s scattered military outposts throughout their territory. Suu Kyi appeals to them precisely because she wants to decentralize the country and move towards a federal model, which is the only thing that these diverse ethnic fighting groups have in common (if it’s not outright independence). As explained in the above section about the government-administered territory, the central authorities don’t have to go on the offensive in order to survive, but also, because of the rebel’s natural resource wealth, they, too, don’t really have to change the status quo in order to prosper, aside from ridding their territories of the military that still ‘steals’ their resources (as they see it, which is the cyclical source of the conflict) or politically realizing a federalist solution that empowers their region. This means that the rebels are technically on the losing defensive, but the dense jungle terrain and hilly geography are on their side and thus poses a massive hindrance to all government efforts in projecting influence deeper into the area and changing the current balance of power present in the periphery.

Stripes

Northern Sagaing State:

The color of the stripe represents which ‘bloc’ is making progress in establishing its influence over a given territory (or part thereof). As can be seen from the map, there are three areas that could possibly become contested battlegrounds in any forthcoming resumption of civil war. Beginning with the northerly most, the blue stripes in Sagaing State represent the National Socialist Council of Nagaland – Khaplang (NSCN-K) that was touched upon earlier. They may not control that much of the area by themselves, but together with their Kachin brothers-in-arms, that part of the state definitely falls under the control of the rebels. It’s an enormous vulnerability from the government’s point of view because the NSCN-K is the leading organization in the United Liberation Front of West South East Asia (UNFLW), a terrorist umbrella of separatist groups active in Northeast India that proved threatening enough to New Delhi for it to enact a cross-border raid against them in June.

Western Shan State:

Moving along, the next striped section is colored red and lies in the western part of Shan State, home to a plethora of active rebel movements. It’s shaded due to the Shan State Army – South’s participation in the NCA and the government’s scattered military presence in the area, which thus allows the newly created capital to acquire a certain degree of strategic depth from any rebel attack. Keep in mind that the military does in fact have influence further than is indicated on the map (recall the Kokang incident spoken about earlier along the Chinese border), but because of the unfamiliarity its majority-Burmese troops have with the far-flung terrain and the dissipated nature of rebel encampments throughout, it’s almost impossible for it to assert a level of sovereignty there equal to what it does in the heartland. The nature of Myanmar’s civil war is that it’s very difficult to draw clear-cut frontlines between forces, but the red shading in the map was estimated as the best approximation of where the government can exert the highest degree of relative control in the state.

Rakhine State:

Finally, the last shaded region is the entirety of Rakhine State, otherwise known the homeland of the Rohingyas and referred by them as “Arakan”. The two main rebel groups associated with the area are on opposing sides now, with the Arakan Liberation Party (ALP) signing the NCA while the Arakan Army (AA) has yet to do so. Interestingly, however, neither group is thought to exert much direct influence in the state at all, with the AA currently being based in Kachin State, the nucleus of the country’s rebel movements, while the ALP is in the extreme northern reaches of their home state but also in Kayin State. The blue shading is explained by the fact that AA has infiltrated some of its troopsback into Rakhine State, meaning that it could very well be preparing an insurgency there among the disgruntled Rohingyas in order to jumpstart the creation of a South Asian “Kosovo” for “Rohingyaland”. If they go forward with this plan, and especially if it’s coordinated with a concurrent rebel offensive in the northeast countryside and a Color Revolution in the urban areas, then it could possibly succeed, hence why the government felt compelled to get on the good side of one of the rebel factions so as to divide the demographic in the event of any uprising. Speaking of which, the population could be provoked towards this end in the event of nationalist Buddhist attacks against the Muslim minority in the state, which have in fact happened before but have yet to lead to an insurgency.

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It’s Official: Obama Rejects Fighting Terrorism in Syria

NOVANEWS
Global Research
obama-isis

His actions say it all. In over a year of bombing, US warplanes struck zero Syrian and Iraqi terrorist targets – none. It’s unsurprising he rejected Putin’s offer to cooperate in fighting ISIS and other terrorist groups.

On Saturday, Sergey Lavrov said the following:

We are ready to back the patriotic opposition, including the so-called Free Syrian Army, with our air support (in jointly fighting ISIS and other terrorist groups).

However, Washington is refusing to inform us of the locations of the terrorists and where the opposition is based. The most important thing for us is to find people who will be true representatives of the armed groups who will confront terrorism among other things (serving the interests of Syrian people, not foreign powers).

Russia is “the only country…support(ing) all political forces in Syria (concerned about maintaining its sovereignty). Foreign players” must have no says about internal politics, decisions for Syrians alone.

We have to make them choose their own process for how their country should live on and protect the interests of every confessional, ethnic or political group.

“Of course, this work should be done in preparation for elections, both parliamentary and presidential” – free from foreign interference.

Putin stressed similar sentiments, saying Russia’s intervention “will not solve all problems, but it will create conditions for the main thing – a beginning of a political process to encompass all healthy patriotic forces of the Syrian society,” concerned about a future free from foreign interference and domination.

Putin and other Russian officials reject Washington’s demand for Assad to go. That’s for Syrians alone to decide. Assad’s red carpet welcome in Moscow shows Moscow’s solidarity with Syria against the scourge of terrorism, along with directly challenging Washington destructive imperial agenda.

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov made similar comments on BBC’s Hardtalk program, saying:

Unfortunately all our ‘partners’ (sic) have failed up to now to identify a serious opposition that has no links to terror, no links with extremist organizations, no links with ISIL, Al Qaeda and others.

He politely stopped short of explaining reality on the ground. US-recruited, funded, armed, trained and directed ISIS and other terrorist groups alone are fighting Syria’s government.

No moderates exist. The so-called Free Syrian Army is more myth than reality – terrorists alone fighting Assad, imported from scores of countries, non-Syrians, wanting the nation’s sovereignty destroyed, serving their own interests and Washington’s, seeking unchallenged regional control.

Peskov stressed the importance of preserving Syria’s “territorial and political integrity, not to let the whole region, including the countries that are bordering with Syria, go into a nightmare of collapse and hegemony of terror.”

Russia wants Syria saved “from terrorists and extremist organizations.” It wants their scourge kept from spreading. It intervened because Washington failed to fight terrorism as promised. It’s part of the problem, not the solution.

Media reports about Russia joining forces with Syrian opposition groups against Assad are false. Lavrov was clear and unequivocal saying Moscow supports all Syrian elements against terrorism, a scourge vital to contain and defeat.

After meeting with his Russian, Turkish, and Saudi counterparts in Vienna, John Kerry lied claiming Washington supports “a global effort of all people of conscience, and nations, to do everything possible to bring (war in Syria) to a close.”

Obama didn’t wage it preemptively in 2011 to quit. US policy fundamentally opposes peace and stability. Endless violence and chaos serve its imperial agenda. An atmosphere of calm and lawfulness defeat it.

Kerry’s sole aim is furthering America’s hegemonic aims, endless wars of aggression its main strategy, millions of lost lives a small price to pay. Conquest and domination alone matter, an agenda reflecting pure evil.

The choice for freedom-loving people everywhere is clear. Defeating this monster is top priority. End its scourge or it’ll end us.

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ISIS Fleeing Syria: Will the “Moderate Syrian Rebels” Move to Miami, America’s Terrorist Haven?

NOVANEWS
McCain-and-Fellow-Jihadis-300x164

There are reports that ISIS has been on the run since Russia began its military operations against the U.S. backed terrorist organization. The relentless bombardment against ISIS, Al –Nusra and other terrorist targets led by the Syrian forces with support from the Russian air force has been an effective strategy to regain lost territories once held by the terrorists. The“Syrian Moderate Rebels” or ISIS has been reported to be demoralized and many are no longer fighting in the conflict according to RT News:

The majority of armed gangs are demoralized. Discontent with field commanders is growing amid the fighters, and there are instances of disobeying orders,” senior Russian General Andrey Kartapolov told a media briefing. Cases of desertion among the jihadists are no longer isolated, with them now fleeing “en masse,” the colonel general, who heads operations in the Russian general staff, added

The U.S. invested an enormous amount of money to arm these terrorist groups where in one case, 4 or 5 jihadists where apparently trained at the cost of $500 million (I’m sure that the military contractors and others in on the deal pocketed the cash for themselves). However, since the campaign began, ISIS militants in fact have been fleeing Syria in droves. But the question must be asked, where would these terrorists end up? Some will go to Iraq, Libya and Lebanon to regroup and maybe some might actually end up in South Florida, a place where they can enjoy the sun and have some fun with the locals. The beaches are decent (although not like the Caribbean) and the people party all night. Miami, home to Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine and actor Andy Garcia has been a haven for terrorists, dictators and mobsters since the 1950’s. Close to the Caribbean, South Florida hosts some of the most notorious terrorists at the expense of the U.S. taxpayers.

Yes, terrorists come in all shapes and sizes. They come in different colors and nationalities. These terrorists who are currently living in Florida are “Latinos” who are right–wing extremists funded and trained courtesy of the CIA since the 1960’s. Many of them support Senator Marco Rubio who fits in as the typical Republican war monger and anti-Castro opponent in Washington as President of the United States. It reminds me of the “Contras” a terrorist organization in Central America who was supported by the Reagan administration during the civil war in Nicaragua. Tens of thousands were tortured, raped and murdered in the process.

However, it is well known that a terrorist who is also a resident of Florida by the name of Luis Posada Carriles and others such as Orlando Bosch (who died on 2011) that live in Miami, Florida. Luis Posada is a free man who committed a terrorist attack on a ‘Cubana’ Airliner in 1976 and was implicated in several others against Cuba since the 1959 revolution led by Fidel Castro. A report by the Miami Herald from this past June states that the declassified documents from 1976 points to Luis Posada Carriles as the ring leader in the bombing of the Cubana Airliner that killed 73 people:

A 1976 document declassified Wednesday by the State Department shows concerns about the CIA’s links with extremist groups within the Cuban exile community and points to Luis Posada Carriles as the most likely planner of the bombing attack against a Cubana Airlines plane that year. The memorandum was sent to then-Secretary of State Henry Kissinger by two high ranking State Department officials who evaluated the accusations made by Fidel Castro on the alleged U.S. involvement in the downing of a Cubana plane traveling out of Barbados on Oct. 6, 1976, in which 73 people were killed. “We have now pursued in detail with CIA (1) what we know about responsibility for the sabotage of the Cubana airliner and (2) how any actions by CIA, FBI, or Defense attache´s might relate to the individuals or groups alleged to have responsibility,” states the report. The memorandum concludes that the CIA had previous ties to three of the people “supposedly” involved in the downing of a Cuban airliner, “but any role that these people may have had with the demolition took place without the knowledge of the CIA

The CIA did not have “no knowledge “of what Carriles was planning? Please, the chances that the CIA did not know what Carriles was capable of is laughable, besides they funded him from the start. Carriles still remains a free man in the streets of Miami. Despite the fact that the Miami Herald (part of the U.S. propaganda machine) did admit that a known terrorist lives in Miami who openly attends “right-wing extremists” fundraisers to overthrow the Cuban government only means that the U.S. government protects him. ISIS or the “Syrian moderate rebels” are fleeing from the crime scene. They are useful tools for Washington’s covert wars they wage across the globe. Where would they go? Miami is an obvious location. Why not? Keep the terrorists close to home in case someone from Langley needs them at a moment’s notice. There is no doubt that the Pentagon’s paid terrorists from the Middle East and North Africa would enjoy the city of Miami.

The U.S. has been arming, funding and directing ISIS (or please excuse me) the “Moderate Syrian Rebels” to target the Syrian government since the civil war began. Russia has stepped in to defeat the terrorist which has destroyed dozens of terrorist targets in a matter of weeks, while the U.S. has been bombing “alleged” terror targets in Syria for over a year without any success. The real reason why the U.S. had a low success rate against ISIS or any other terror group in the region is that the U.S. is complicit in funding and arming them from the start. The goal was to oust the Assad government and it has failed. Russia has showed the world who is the real hypocrite. Now ISIS is on the run, fleeing the war zone they have created. Russia will continue its fight along with its allies, but the question is what will ISIS do? Move to Miami?

Just imagine, ISIS living in South Beach, sipping rum and coke with Luis Posada on the beach talking about how great it is living “La Vida Loca” as a terrorist. I am not saying that ISIS is actively looking for condos or a house in Miami, but as history tells us, good terrorists who obey Washington’s orders will be well compensated in the end, even if the objectives are not met. As crazy as it may be, that is a hard truth for those who live on U.S. shores especially in Miami who might have to get use to the idea that your neighbor next door might actually be a terrorist.

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The Pantomime of Democracy: Portugal’s Coup against Anti-Austerity

NOVANEWS
Global Research
Le Portugal adopte un budget d'austérité tandis que s'intensifient les attaques spéculatives contre l'Espagne

Meanwhile in Portugal we are witnessing the makings of a genuine coup with the unwillingness of the establishment there to accept the outcome of an election and the support won by parties who oppose EU austerity. Gerry Adams, Sinn Féin, Oct 24, 2015

This is the truest form of Euro authoritarianism, short of full prisons and torture chambers. (These may, in time, come.) If you are not seized by the idea, the fetishism of a currency; if you gather up your forces to mount an offence against austerity, twinned as it with monetary union, then you must be, in the eyes of these policing forces, against the European project.

This obscene inversion has found form in Portugal, yet another country that has taken the road towards anti-democratic practice when it comes to the battle between the outcome of staged elections and the heralded inviolability of a broken euro system. It has the chill of history – political groupings with a certain number of votes barred because of supposedly radical tendencies. It has also received scant coverage in certain presses, with a few notable examples, such as Ambrose Evans-Pritchard’s observation that the country had “entered dangerous political waters.”[1]

First, the mathematics of the election held on October 4. The combined Left bloc won 50.7 percent of the vote (122 seats), while the conservative premier, Pedro Passos Coehlo’s Right-wing coalition gained 38.5 percent – a loss of 28 seats. One would have to be a rather brave and foolish individual to let the latter form government.

This, in fact, is what Aníbal Cacavo Silva, the country’s constitutional president, did. “In the 40 years of democracy, no government in Portugal has ever depended on the support of anti-European forces, that is to say forces that campaigned to abrogate the Lisbon Treaty, the Fiscal Compact, the Growth and Stability Pact, as well as to dismantle monetary union and take Portugal out of the euro, in wanting the dissolution of NATO.”

The statement hits upon a definition of the European project, if you can call it that, linked to bound, self-interested market structures and the virtues of military defence. Cavaco Silva evidently cannot conceive that a European project could involve a variation of the theme, let alone one averse to dogmas of austerity and the bank.

The Socialists, under António Costa, have promised Keynesian reflation policies with expenditures on education and health, a policy platform very much at odds with the EU’s Fiscal Compact.

So much, in that sense, for the legacy of the Carnation Revolution, which saw Portugal’s post-Salazar normalisation. It was that generally peaceful revolution that oversaw the demise of the Estada Novo, António de Oliveira Salazar’s corporatist vision that shares, in some perverse sense, similarities with the anti-democratic spirit of EU market governance. Bolting from those same stables, Cavaco Silva insists that the European left, and specifically the parties in Portugal, are somehow against Europe, parochial and therefore dangerous. The reverse, in fact, is the case.

The clue in Cavaco Silva’s erroneous thoughts on where a pan-European idea lies in his total faith in the market, corporate ideal. It is not the language of voters and public investment here that counts, but the ghostly forces of capital and private investment. The investors, the financiers, and the bankers must be kept in clover – or the entire country and by virtue of that, the EU, unravels.

This is the worst moment for a radical change to the foundations of our democracy. After we carried out an onerous programme of financial assistance, entailing heavy sacrifices, it is my duty, within my constitutional powers, to do everything possible to prevent false signals being sent to financial institutions, investors and markets.

In point of fact, the most radical tendency in history is the illusion that democracy and the market do, in fact, have a relationship that corresponds, rather than jars. In truth, democracy can only ever survive when markets are controlled. The European financiers have given the impression, manifested through the ideology of the Troika, that the estranged European Union is democratic only because it has such institutions as a single currency, or a tough austerity line.

The Greek crisis showed this entire process to be a grim sham, with Athens now a client state mortgaged to the hilt and contained by debt bondage. This happened after Syriza won power in January with a platform that seemed, at first, to be wholly against austerity. Sovereignty is short changed, while the finance sector counts its gains.

The entire context of such revolt in finance is permissiveness towards reactionary, nationalist elements. This is the paradox of having a supposedly flexible market that encourages the ease of liquidity in the absence of stable social structures. Historically, the forces of capital and finance permit a degree of nationalism and extremism as long as the money sector comes good. The liquidity tends to stay put.

The Portuguese example has become the most overt statement of this so far, though the Left grouping promise to block and scuttle the proposed four-year policy programme of the minority administration when the assembly resumes.

Till the two points meet – the pro-European left inspired by Keynesian-buttressed sovereignty, and the anti-democratic institutions that have held the European idea hostage – the notion of a workable euro zone will disintegrate. It will become, instead, a geographical area populated by authoritarian governments who see elections as mere pantomimes.

Posted in EuropeComments Off on The Pantomime of Democracy: Portugal’s Coup against Anti-Austerity

US-Turkey “Buffer Zone” to Save ISIS, Not Stop Them

NOVANEWS
Global Research
army4-300x192

Russia’s intervention in Syria has derailed US regime-change efforts aimed at Damascus. It also threatens America’s secondary objective of dividing and destroying Syria as a functioning, unified nation-state. Long sought after “buffer zones” also sometimes referred to as “free zones” or “safe zones” still stand as the primary strategy of choice by the US and its regional allies for the deconstruction of Syria’s sovereignty and the intentional creation of a weak, failed state not unlike what the US and NATO left within the borders of Libya since 2011.

And while the US seeks to sell its “buffer zone” strategy under a variety of pretexts – from protecting refugees to fighting the so-called “Islamic State” (ISIS/ISIL) – it is admittedly a tactic aimed instead at America’s true objectives in Syria – the destruction of its government, the division of its people, and the eradication of its sovereignty.

ISIS is Clearly the Product of State-Sponsorship  

In 2012, it was clear that the region north of Aleppo and across the border into Turkey, had become one of two primary points (Jordan being the other) of staging and entry for NATO-backed terrorists operating in Syria. It was from across the border north of Aleppo and Idlib that NATO-armed, funded, and trained terrorists from Libya first flowed into Syrian territory and from where the initial 2012 invasion of Aleppo emanated.

While NATO opened up several other fronts along Syria’s northern border, this has remained their primary focus – specifically for the purpose of taking Idlib, Aleppo, or both, establishing them as a seat of government for a proxy regime, and as a strategic and logistical springboard to wage war deeper into Syrian territory from.

While initially the West attempted to make ISIS appear to be sustaining its fighting capacity within a vacuum deep within Syrian and Iraqi territory, allegedly sustaining itself on ransoms and black market oil, the scale of their operations has since betrayed this narrative, revealing immense state-sponsorship behind them.

If ISIS was being armed, funded, equipped, and its ranks replenished from abroad, it would need supply lines leading to and from these resources. Fighting along the Syrian-Turkish border, between ISIS and both Syrian troops and Kurds exposed NATO-ISIS ratlines – with maps published even by the Western media clearly indicating ISIS supply lines as “support zones” and “attack zones.”

Cutting NATO-ISIS Supply Lines

It was clear that as Syrian troops deep within Syria encircled, cut off the supplies of, and defeated terrorist bastions in cities like Homs and Hama, a much larger version of this would need to be accomplished to secure Syria’s borders. With Syrian troops themselves unable to operate along its borders with Turkey because of a defacto no-fly-zone established with the help of US anti-air missile systems, the burden has been shifted onto Syrian and Iranian-backed Kurds.

The Kurds with their advantages as irregular forces familiar with the territory and now receiving significant material support have managed to cut off ISIS from its NATO supply lines along nearly the entire Syrian-Turkish border, save for the region just north of Aleppo and Idlib. Kurds and Syrian forces have managed to secure the border on positions flanking this last NATO-ISIS logistical zone and threaten to cut it off as well.

Thus the intentionally confusing narrative and feigned jostling between Turkey and the US over the exact details of the impending “buffer zone” they seek to carve out of Syrian territory becomes crystal clear.

It is intended entirely to preserve ISIS, Al Nusra, and other Al Qaeda affiliates’ supply lines to and from Turkey. It, by necessity, will exclude Kurds – an immense betrayal by the Americans who have attempted to pose as their allies – and the Syrian Arab Army, to ensure no force is capable of harassing and disrupting NATO’s increasingly tenuous logistical and terrorist operations.

With Russia’s entry into the conflict, and its application of airpower across regions previously out of reach of Syria’s own heavily taxed air force, the prospect of Syrian and Kurdish forces now being able to close that last remaining gap has become a real possibility. Should this gap be closed and similar efforts accomplished in Syria’s south near its border with Jordan, not only will NATO’s mercenary forces be strangled, all prospects of NATO dividing and destroying Syria will be lost well into the foreseeable future.

“Buffer Zone” To Divide and Destroy, Not Save Syria 

Western policymakers have made it quite clear precisely what these “buffer zones” are truly intended for. While they claim they are aimed at fighting ISIS or protecting refugees – these are but pretexts.
The Brookings Institution – a corporate-funded policy think-tank whose policymakers have helped craft upper-level strategy for the Iraqi, Afghan, Libyan, and now Syrian conflicts as well as plans laid for future confrontations with Iran and beyond – has been explicit regarding the true nature of these “buffer zones.” In a recent paper titled, Deconstructing Syria: A new strategy for America’s most hopeless war,” it states:

…the idea would be to help moderate elements establish reliable safe zones within Syria once they were able. American, as well as Saudi and Turkish and British and Jordanian and other Arab forces would act in support, not only from the air but eventually on the ground via special forces.

The paper goes on by explaining (emphasis added) :

The end-game for these zones would not have to be determined in advance. The interim goal might be a confederal Syria, with several highly autonomous zones and a modest (eventual) national government. The confederation would likely require support from an international peacekeeping force, if this arrangement could ever be formalized by accord. But in the short term, the ambitions would be lower—to make these zones defensible and governable, to help provide relief for populations within them, and to train and equip more recruits so that the zones could be stabilized and then gradually expanded.

In essence, these zones constitute a defacto NATO invasion and occupation. The territory seized would be used as springboards to launch attacks deeper still into Syrian territory until eventually the entire nation was either permanently Balkanized or destroyed. Despite Brookings’ claims that eventually a national government would emerge and the territory under it “stabilized,” a look at all other NATO interventions, invasions, and occupations (i.e. Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya) clearly indicates Syria’s true fate will be anything but stable and well-governed.

The President of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) Richard Haas, published an op-ed titled, Testing Putin in Syria,” which echoed the Brookings plan (emphasis added):

In the meantime, the United States and others should pursue a two-track policy. One track would channel steps to improve the balance of power on the ground in Syria. This means doing more to help the Kurds and select Sunni tribes, as well as continuing to attack the Islamic State from the air.

Relatively safe enclaves should emerge from this effort. A Syria of enclaves or cantons may be the best possible outcome for now and the foreseeable future. Neither the US nor anyone else has a vital national interest in restoring a Syrian government that controls all of the country’s territory; what is essential is to roll back the Islamic State and similar groups.

It should be noted that the CFR plan was presented after Russia’s intervention, Brookings’ plan was presented beforehand, as early as June, and the concept of buffer zones has been proposed by US policymakers as early as 2012.

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It was also recently revealed during a US Senate Committee on Armed Services hearing that retired US Army General John Keane suggested the creation of “free zones” in precisely the same manner. General Keane also suggested using refugees as a means of deterring Russian airstrikes in these zones – or in other words – using refugees as human shields. The common denominator between the Brookings, the CFR, and the US Senate Committee on Armed Services’ plans is the establishment of these zones for the destruction of Syria by perpetuating the fighting. To perpetuate the fighting terrorists like ISIS and Al Nusra must be continuously supplied and supported – a process now in jeopardy because of Russia’s intervention.

In a desperate last bid, the US may try to seize and expand “buffer zones” within Syrian territory in the hopes that these expansions can at least Balkanize Syria before Russia and Syria are able to roll back terrorist forces from most vital regions. It will be a race between Russia and Syria’s ability to drive out terrorists and stabilize liberated regions and America’s ability to bolster terrorists in regions along the border while obtaining public support for providing these terrorists with direct US-NATO military protection. Somewhere in between these two strategies lies the possibility of a direct confrontation between Russian-Syrian forces and US-NATO forces.

For the US and NATO, they would be provoking a wider war within the borders of a foreign nation in direct violation of the UN Charter, without a UN Security Council resolution, and with an entire planet now aware of their role in creating and perpetuating the very terrorist threat they have claimed now for a decade to be at ‘war’ with.

Revealing the true nature of NATO’s “buffer zones” and the fact that they are aimed at saving, not stopping ISIS, Al Nusra, and other Al Qaeda linked extremist factions, further undermines the moral, political, diplomatic, and even strategic viability of this plan. By revealing to the world the true solution to solving the “ISIS problem” – cutting their fighters off from their Western and Arabian state-sponsors, opens the door to more aggressive – not to mention more effective – measures to defeat them both in Syria and elsewhere.

That Russia has already begun taking these measures means that that window has closed further still for the US. The only question now will be whether the US concedes defeat, or escalates dangerously toward war with Russia to save a policy that has not only utterly failed, but has already been exposed to the world as a criminal conspiracy.

Logistics is the lifeblood of war. Understanding this and denying the enemy the resources they need to maintain their fighting capacity is the key to victory. The Russians, Syrians, Kurds, and Iranians are strangling NATO’s proxies at their very source and instinctively, NATO has raised its hands in the form of a “buffer zone” to defend them and relieve the pressure – thus revealing the true nature of this regional conflict and the central role the West has played in creating and perpetuating ISIS, Al Qaeda, and other extremists currently ravaging Syria and beyond.

Posted in USA, TurkeyComments Off on US-Turkey “Buffer Zone” to Save ISIS, Not Stop Them

Baghdad Defies Washington

NOVANEWS

Iraq and Russia Agree to Hit ISIS Militants Heading from Syria to Iraq

Global Research
Russia Iraq

Iraqi Parliament’s National Security and Defense Committee Hakem al-Zameli said that Baghdad and Moscow have agreed to hit ISIL militants heading from Syria to Iraq.

In a statement released on Friday, Zameli said that the joint data center between Iraq, Syria and Russia was still in its initial stage, noting that however, it has offered important intelligence information which helped end the battle in Baiji, raqi TV, al-Sumaria reported on Friday.

Syria offered important information about the position of ISIL (so-called Islamic State in Iraq and Levant), Zameli said in the statement.

“Iraq agreed with Russia, which leads the joint data center, to hit ISIL militants heading from Syria to Iraq,” Zameli said, pointing out that this move weakens ISIL militants as it cuts off supply routes of the Takfiri insurgents.

Earlier on Wednesday, Reuters news agency reported that Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi is under pressure to seek anti-ISIL strikes from Russia.

Iraq’s ruling alliance and powerful Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) have urged Abadi to request Russian air strikes against ISIL.

The agency quoted quoted two members of parliament as saying that the prime minister was under “tremendous pressure” from the ruling National Alliance to request Russian intervention.

The United States is leading a 60-plus member coalition allegedly targeting ISIL Takfiri group (so-called Islamic State in Iraq and Levant) in Iraq and Syria and has been carrying out frequent raids for more than a year.

The strikes have failed to turn the tide in the war against the Takfiri militants who have declared a caliphate and want to redraw the map of the Middle East.

Meanwhile, and under the request of the Syrian government, Russia also is launching an air campaign against ISIL and other terrorists.

Posted in USA, Iraq, RussiaComments Off on Baghdad Defies Washington

Is Jordan Switching Sides?

NOVANEWS

Putin Signs Military Cooperation Agreement with King Abdullah

Global Research
Image result for King Abdullah JORDAN CARTOON

On Friday, Sputnik News, RT International, the Jordan Times and Reuters said Russian and Jordanian officials agreed to establish a “special working mechanism” to share information on counterterrorism operations in Syria.

“Under an agreement between His Majesty King Abdullah II and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, the militaries of the two countries have agreed to coordinate their actions, including military aircraft missions over the Syrian territory,” Sergey Lavrov explained. He urged other nations to join their coalition against a common enemy.

Jordan’s communications minister Mohammad Momani said “military cooperation…between (both countries) concerns southern Syria and aims to ensure security of the Kingdom’s northern frontier.”

“Jordan remains an active member of the international coalition fighting the Da’esh terror group.” Coordination between both countries isn’t new, he added. It’s been developing for some time at all levels.

Reuters said “Moscow’s deal with Jordan could mark a shift in the alliances engaged in the Syria conflict.” Jordan’s ambassador to Moscow Aiad al-Majali said establishing a “special working mechanism” to share information on Syrian operations increases military cooperation between both countries to an unprecedented level.

“It will not be just in a format of informations exchange,” he explained. “(W)e see a necessity ‘to be on the ground’ as Jordan has a border with Syria.”

“(W)hen it comes to combating terrorism, we have to” increase Amman/Moscow cooperation. Discussions have been ongoing for some time. How this affects US regional operations remains to be seen.

Jordan is a longtime US ally, an Israeli one since their October 1994 peace treaty, both countries at the time pledging neither would let its territory be used as a staging ground for military attacks by a third country, a promise broken practically before the ink was dry.

Washington works with both countries to advance its imperium, freely using their territory. Is Jordan now shifting alliances?

It lets CIA and Pentagon operatives along with British and French instructors train ISIS fighters covertly at a secret military location, sending them across its porous 375 km border with Syria to fight Assad’s government.

Jordan’s apparent willingness to join Russia’s campaign likely reflects concern about extremist elements biting the hand that’s been feeding them.

Their ambitions go way beyond Syria and Iraq. They may have Jordan and Lebanon in mind next with other countries to follow if they’re not stopped.

Putin’s main concern is their presence in Afghanistan, likely intending to expand to Central Asia, especially Russia.

Russian intelligence estimates around 3,500 militants in Afghanistan, their numbers increasing – US, UK, Arab and Pakistani instructors training them.

Russia’s Main Intelligence Directorate chief Col. Gen. Igor Sergun said ISIS elements see Afghanistan as a rich recruiting ground, a foothold for expanding into Central Asia – why Putin believes it’s urgent to defeat them in their current strongholds.

Does Jordan now share the same view? Another body blow to Washington’s hegemonic agenda if so.

Posted in Jordan, RussiaComments Off on Is Jordan Switching Sides?

Out of the limelight, state-sponsored child kidnap and abuse continue in I$raHell

NOVANEWS
Israel Ambash

Marianne Azizi writes:

While the world’s attention is focused on the violence sweeping across the Israeli occupied Palestinian territories and Israel itself, another war is being fought, out of the media limelight.

It is the war being waged by the Israeli state, in the form of the Ministry of Welfare and Social Services, against Israel’s own citizens – the Jewish ones.

So, it’s no surprise that amid the upheavals, while many people stayed at home to avoid the violence, Israel’s juvenile courts were busy tarnishing the future of young Israeli teenagers.

The phenomenon of kids escaping from institutions is well known in Israel. The authorities coerce and condition children, using the juvenile courts to bring them into line.

One “offence” which would land a child in a juvenile court is escaping from the custody of an institution. The kids then get a police arrest record and have to beg probation officers and judges for their lives. Mothers, fathers and teachers become involved with the “troubled” children – children who were stolen by the state from those parents in the first place. It is a nefarious trick in the state’s bag of tricks against children.

On one fatefully quiet day a court case was being held against a 17-year-old Israeli boy, Israel Ambash (pictured above). He had suffered over three years of abuse in an institution after being kidnapped by Welfare and Social Services Ministry against his will and that of his parents.

Eighteen months previously Ambash had escaped from an institution but was hunted down and caught approximately 5 kilometres from the institution while walking along a railway track. Upon being caught, his bags were searched and a Swiss army knife was found inside, which he swears he had won in a competition inside the institution. Nevertheless, he was accused of possessing a dangerous weapon.

Israel Ambash was taken back to the institution and an order was made immediately to have seven psychiatrists examine him to see if he was suffering delusions – for why else would he want to escape abuse in an institution!

The suspicion was that Ambash was suffering from paranoia. Without even waiting for the psychiatrists’ reports, the judge, Shimon Leybo, ordered that Ambash be given 90 days of treatment involving the immediate use of psychotropic drugs. This happened even though the law stipulates that a child can be given a maximum of only 14 days’ observation for a diagnosis.

In Israel, there is a psychiatrist, Tanya Shecter, whose trademark is removing children from their parents after diagnosing them with folie a deux – a delusion or mental illness shared by two people in close association, in this case meaning a parent and child causing each other harm. Although this is an extremely rare condition, in Israel it is regularly used by the state to kidnap children.

Israel Ambash’s lawyer immediately appealed to the district court to rescind the decision made to drug the traumatised child. It was granted and this summer the boy was released. Social workers fought to put him in a summer camp for children aged seven to eight years. The lawyer fought again to prove that this was an outrageous attempt to keep a 17 year old incarcerated.

In retaliation for losing their case, one social worker, Ruth Matut, asked the district attorney to open a case against the child for carrying a knife, and the request was duly accepted.

Last week the case was heard. The juvenile criminal lawyer did not show up for the case. Without any defence lawyer present, the judge ruled that the boy was a fugitive and ordered that he be placed under arrest.

Not content with wrenching a boy from his family against his will, forcing him to speak against his parents, filling him with psychotropic drugs, and veering between cruelty and kindness which many thousands of children endure in Israel, the Israeli court decided that the boy who was running back to the arms of his mother had escaped from the custody of the state. At the tender age of 17, completely traumatised from three years of horror at the hands of social workers, Israel Ambash is now tarnished with a criminal record and is considered a fugitive.

In unreported Israel, the system secretly continues to abuse the human and civil rights of its own Jewish citizens while publicly declaring them victims.

Years of secrecy and censorship have resulted in the Israeli people having no choice than to tell their stories to the world to expose what is really happening to them in Israel.

So, please sign this petition appealing to the United nations to investigate human rights abuse inside Israel.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZI, Human RightsComments Off on Out of the limelight, state-sponsored child kidnap and abuse continue in I$raHell

The ideologue’s tunnel vision: the case of US Zionist David Harris

NOVANEWS
David Harris

By Lawrence Davidson

Ideologues

An ideologue is someone who sees the world in the limiting terms of a doctrine or dogma. It is limiting because the human world does not operate or evolve according to any one dogma. Therefore, ideologues must wear blinders that result in tunnel vision – a tunnel which, like a Procrustean bed, tries to force the world to fit their chosen ideology.

There are hundreds of ideologies out there, both religious and secular, and in every case the resulting tunnel vision eventually results in absurdities – claims about the world that, seen from outside of the ideology, make little or no sense. So it is with the ideology of Zionism and the doctrinaire interpretations its adherents make about their own behaviour and the behaviour of others who oppose them.

One such proponent of Zionist ideology is David Harris, the executive director of the American Jewish Committee  (AJC). The AJC describes its mission as “to enhance the wellbeing of the Jewish people and Israel”. This is a point of dogma for the Zionists – that the wellbeing of the Jewish people and Israel are bound together. I am often confronted with Harris’s ideological take on events because, curiously, he has me on his mailing list.

David Harris’s view of ongoing violence in Israel

On 11 October 2015 Harris posted an essay on the ongoing violence in Israel-Palestine. It is entitled Attacks against Israelis: The world’s silence Is deafening and the entire piece can be found both on the Huffington Post andThe Times of Israel. The  essay seeks to promote a picture of Israeli victimhood. As such, it opens up a clear window on the Zionist’s view of the present situation and therefore is worth taking a look at.

What I am going to do is take representative segments from Harris’s essay and show how the grievances he reserves for  Israelis seem somehow wrong when considered from outside the Zionist perspective. Indeed, as Harris’s complaint about the “world’s silence” in the face of violence against Israelis suggests, for many people his picture of Israeli victimhood is quite untenable. Because his ideology will not allow him to consider the possibility of Israel’s responsibility for the present violence, the world’s “silence” leaves him aggrieved and bewildered.

Here then are some representative parts of Harris’s essay.

Harris starts this way:

For days now, I have been watching in dismay as Israeli citizens face random attacks, some deadly, by Palestinian assailants on the streets of their cities and towns. Children have been orphaned, parents have lost children, and some survivors are doubtless scarred for life.

It is true that individual Israelis have been hurt or killed in the recent past in apparently random attacks by Palestinians. Unfortunately, this is as far as Harris’s understanding goes. Thus, his tunnel vision renders invisible other perspectives, such as the possibility that dead and injured Israeli Jews, like the Palestinians themselves, are victims of the aggressive Zionist society and culture they live in, the government and laws they obey, and the racist policies they tolerate.

Given this perspective, the present Palestinian violence becomes understandable as a product of anger and frustration caused by Israeli occupation and longstanding discrimination against Israeli Arabs. There has been no need for an indoctrination of hate by Hamas or any other religiously inspired group (a favourite red herring of Zionist ideologues) to explain Palestinian actions. Israeli policies and practices in and of themselves are quite sufficient.

Harris cannot perceive, much less understand, this perspective. Yet, in ever greater numbers, the people outside of Israel can see that any portrayal of Israeli victimhood is in conflict with an objective reading of the history of the Israeli-Palestinian struggle.

David Harris continues:

And I’ve been wondering, not for the first time, what it would take for the world to wake up and acknowledge… that Israel, the lone liberal democracy in the Middle East, is facing violence that must be condemned unequivocally, and that it, like any other nation, has the obligation to defend itself.

This “wondering” is also a product of Harris’s constricted view. There has never been any Zionist complaints, from Harris in particular, about the world’s silence while the Palestinians experience “liberal” Israel’s ethnic bias and occupation. Nor did he and his fellows take note of the world’s silence when Palestine’s own 2006 democratic election was suppressed by Israel and its American ally. It is exactly this silence in the face of Palestinian suffering that has left Israeli power in place and allowed for its oppressive use. Yet this particular silence has no place in Harris’s ideologically constructed world.

Harris goes on:

It’s striking how… some otherwise intelligent and thoughtful people in government, media, or think-tanks, just shut down their critical faculties. Instead, they resort to a Pavlovian response mechanism that essentially rejects any possible legitimacy for the Israeli position and blindly defends whatever Palestinian narrative comes along.

As noted above, an ideological outlook usually leads to absurdities. The truth is that until recently the Zionist narrative on Israel-Palestine held a monopoly in the West. Now, finally, Israel’s consistent apartheid-like practices are being noticed and as a result that monopoly is crumbling. The best Harris can do is evoke a fictional “Pavlovian mechanism” to explain the responses to Israeli policies. Nonetheless, the weakening of the Zionist narrative is at an early stage, which means that, even now, it is often not the Israeli narrative that has to fight its way into the media, think-tanks and government councils. It is the Palestinian one.

There is much more to Harris’s missive, and almost every paragraph is shaped by the doctrinal demands of his ideology. The ersatz victimhood he claims for the Israelis is in fact a measure of the resulting distortion. For he, and his fellow Zionists, have stolen that depiction of suffering from their own victims, the Palestinians. Such is the power of ideological blinders.

Conclusion

To pull off this reversal of roles and posit the Israelis as victims of the Palestinians, Harris’s essay must leave out the seminal fact that for the past 67 years Israel has possessed overwhelming power. With this power Israel has oppressively controlled almost every aspect of Palestinian life. The inevitable result is the violence of resistance. Israelis who suffer from that violence should take this reality into consideration. But, few of them can do this.

The explanation for this inability brings us back to the problem of tunnel vision. Consider the following: many Palestinians can understand Western Jewish history, including the holocaust, and recognise how it shapes, though ultimately cannot excuse, Zionist behaviour. This ability to understand is facilitated by the fact that the Palestinians were not responsible for the suffering of Western Jewry. Unfortunately, the Zionists can’t reciprocate by understanding the history that drives Palestinian behaviour. They cannot do so because their ideology precludes the possibility that they are in fact responsible for Palestinian suffering. Ideologues are not known for their skill at self-criticism.

One of the most renowned Jewish journalists, I.F. Stone, once said, referring to his own Jewish brethren,

how we act toward the Arabs will determine what kind of people we become: either oppressors and racists in our turn like those from whom we have suffered, or a nobler race able to transcend the tribal xenophobias that afflict mankind.

Well, the verdict is in, at least for those Jews who adhere to the Zionist ideology. For them “oppression and racism” has won out. And so has denial – just read David Harris.

Posted in USAComments Off on The ideologue’s tunnel vision: the case of US Zionist David Harris

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