Archive | January 3rd, 2017

British Lies Are a Secret No More

NOVANEWS
Image result for David Cameron and Theresa May CARTOON
By Jean Perier

The sitting British officials remain ignorant of the fact what kind of disservice the Obama administration has made them by demanding London to repeat the twisted lies the former has been spreading. Both David Cameron and Theresa May have always been obedient disciples of the White House, therefore they chose to spread tedious lies and disinformation in a bid to justify the failure of their social and economic policies, while hiding from the public the fact that Britain is responsible for a number of armed conflicts in the Middle East and Africa.

As a result, a considerable number of media sources and non-governmental organizations have been tasked with creating the image of a dangerous enemy looming somewhere on the borders, to cover corruption and looting of the UK treasury, that are now being labeled as “necessary measures taken for the protection from external threats.”

The British Independent would become pretty apologetic by claiming:

The foreign media has allowed – through naivety or self-interest – people who could only operate with the permission of al-Qaeda-type groups such as Jabhat al-Nusra and Ahrar al-Sham to dominate the news agenda.

So it’s now the fault of pro-Western radical militants that the corporate media were publishing one lie after another about the situation in Aleppo, and Western governments had nothing to do with the fact that those who reported facts about the situation on the ground would soon be kidnapped and executed. Thus, the Independent openly admits, that radical jihadists were allowed to shape the media coverage of Western media sources completely. But then the Independent takes a step further in admitting what has been happening all along in Syria:

It would be simple-minded to believe that this very appealing and professional PR for the Syrian armed opposition is all their own work. Foreign governments play a fairly open role in funding and training opposition media specialists. One journalist of partly Syrian extraction in Beirut told me how he had been offered $17,000 a month to work for just such an opposition media PR project backed by the British government.

So, both the UK and US media sources are accomplices of the war crimes that the West has been carrying out in Syria, or maybe the editors of those corporate media sources were held hostage of radical militants too, while being unable to tell the truth?

The more time passes since the liberation of Aleppo, the more facts we learn about the attempts that the West made to prevent citizens of this city from getting rid from the barbaric oppression of radical militants. There’s been reports that the fake stories about “Russia’s war crimes in Syria” were fabricated by British intelligence services. There’s every reason to believe that even though the notorious “White Helmets” organization is being sponsored by George Soros, it’s directly controlled by Western intelligence services. In total, London has allocated 32 million pounds to sponsor this organization, with 12,5 sent last year alone. According to the reports released by Syrian journalists, the White Helmets are getting 50 million dollars a year from various sources, while George Soros remains one of their main sponsors.

The founder of the White Helmets is James Le Mesurier, a British “security” specialist and ‘ex’ British military intelligence officer with an impressive track record in some of the most dubious NATO interventions. Additionally, one of the leaders of the White Helmets, Mosab Obeidat, has already been identified to have contributed a major role in the financing of the terrorist groups. According to some reports, Obeidat has played the role of a mediator in providing the Syrian militants with around 2.2 million dollars to pay for weapons and ammunition supplies.

The White Helmets have been actively cooperating with the Jabhat al-Nusra movement, the local branch of Al-Qaeda. In fact, it was with the support of these terrorist organizations that allowed the White Helmets to operate in the areas controlled by terrorists, where other non-governmental organizations are virtually banned. It’s curious that last year this organization was even nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, which, according to its backers in London, would make its activities more visible.

In this regard, it’s curious that in the official report UK NON-HUMANITARIAN AID IN RESPONSE TO THE SYRIA CONFLICT, it’s been explicitly stated that the White Helmets received 15 million pounds from the British government, while another 5.3 million pounds were allocated to “certain media sources”.

It should also be added that just recently at the UN conference entitled “Against propaganda and regime change, for peace and national sovereignty” Eva Bartlett, a prominent journalist from Canada, stressed the fact that there are no offices of international human rights organizations in Syria. Therefore, the West is free to draw any conclusions about the humanitarian situation on the basis of the observations of “Syrian Observatory For Human Rights”, that has a single employee that is living in the UK. Bartlett has also complained that reports are often drafted on the basis of the information provided by dubious groups, such as the White Helmets.

It’s imperative for everyone to understand that when policymakers act according to false narratives, especially ones they create themselves, the result is grave dangers, as we are now experiencing with the new Cold War. To escape these dangers, London must first get the history right, particularly its own role in spreading conflicts in the Middle East.

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Thatcher Wanted to Infest Peru With Coca-Eating Moths: New Docs

NOVANEWS
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teleSUR 

Margaret Thatcher wanted to eradicate cocaine in Peru with moths, according to newly-released documents, which also reveal the then-British government’s top-secret strategy in combating acid house parties and soccer hooligans.

Her peer in the Labour Party, Lord Victor Rothschild, suggested in 1989 that to tackle drug production in Peru, “One might think of aerial sprays, with or without the connivance of the government concerned; and various other methods of introduction, covert as well as overt.”

The moth, Eloria noyesi, is known for its exclusive diet of the coca plant. “While virtually everyone agrees that those who take cocaine or crack, in the various ways available, should be punished, everyone, I think, agrees that it is the ‘drug baron’ who must be mercilessly ‘put down,’” Rothschild also added.

Thatcher found the “most intriguing idea” to be “characteristically brilliant” and an “ingenious solution,” she responded in a letter released Friday by the National Archives in Kew.

However, the plan was never executed because it lacked cooperation from the Peruvian government.

Other declassified documents describe plans to allow law enforcement to attack anti-nuclear “demonstrators or terrorists” and “as a last resort, open fire to prevent a perceived threat of sabotage not only to nuclear warheads but also to the submarine.”

Multiple documents also detail moves against soccer hooligans with the aim of “excluding troublemakers from football grounds,” who represent “a serious blemish on our society” that are “destroying the game as family entertainment.”

Another signature fight from Thatcher revealed in the documents is her war on Acid House parties, the 1980s’ underground equivalent of raves. Private correspondence claims her uncle was “very disturbed” by the parties and that police had a “feeling of collective anger and helplessness” when they were unable to shutdown the raves.

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Naziyahu openly boasts of ‘Israel’s’ war on Africans

NOVANEWS
Netanyahu openly boasts of Israel’s war on Africans
Close-up of Netanyahu with Israeli flag behind him
Benjamin Netanyahu remains Israel’s racist ringleader-in-chief.

Jonathan ErnstReuters

Donald Trump’s election as US president has given closeted racists the license they have long sought to openly advocate against Muslims, refugees and people of color.

As progressive Americans strategize on how to defend victims of bigotry, they would be wise to take stock of how Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is already carrying out ethnic cleansing similar to that which Trump has promised to implement.

Two incidents bookending the year capture the zeitgeist of Israel’s war on African refugees in 2016. In January, an African refugee family, whose 1-year-old baby, Kako, had been stabbed in the head, departed Israel after the Netanyahu government refused to help them defer the child’s medical bills.

And in December, the Israeli police station responsible for south Tel Aviv honored May Golan, a leader of anti-African incitement campaigns that, for all intents and purposes, encourage attacks such as the one on baby Kako.

For the past five years, I have been compiling annual lists of the ringleaders in Israel’s war on Africans. My list for 2016 incorporates almost every branch of the Israeli state.

10. Moshe Kaspi, university dean

In February, the dean of an Israeli university gave his students an exam that contained a question which implicitly compared African refugees to rats.

In the test authored and administered by Moshe Kaspi, a dean at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, engineering students were asked to calculate the cost of removing rodents from the Tel Aviv area, transferring them to a holding center in the south of the country, and then shipping them to Africa, where they would be experimented on.

Man walks in between barracks and barbed wire fencing
An African asylum seeker walks inside the Holot detention center in southern Israel on 6 February 2016.

Oren ZivActiveStills

While the exercise did not explicitly mention African refugees, the analogy would have been obvious to many students, since the scenario it posits closely parallels political developments in Israel. For the last three years, the Israeli government has been rounding up African refugees in the Tel Aviv area and transferring them to a detention center in the south of the country. Following their detention, many of the refugees have been expelled to Africa, just like the rats in Kaspi’s test.

After one woman accused him of racism, Kaspi apologized for the question, claiming that he had intended “to insert an aspect of humor into the exam.”

The incident did not seem to significantly tarnish the reputation of Ben-Gurion University. A few months months later, the college received a $400 million gift, the largest college endowment in Israel’s history.

9. Israel Ziv, security consultant

Israel Ziv’s prior career as an officer in the Israeli military ended just before African refugees began arriving to the country in large numbers a decade ago. But since that time, Ziv has parlayed his army career into a successful business in the private sector with the security consulting firm Global CST.

In that capacity, Ziv has provided services to Salva Kiir Mayardit, president of South Sudan. Kiir is responsible for horrific crimes against his own citizens.

After a long career in the Israeli military, Israel Ziv now heads the security consulting firm Global CST. (Flickr)

Earlier this month, an Israel Channel 2 video report revealed that Ziv had advised Kiir in an effort to rehabilitate his international reputation. Kiir has come into disrepute for allowing his soldiers to rape women and young girls, in lieu of salary payment, and to castrate and kill young boys.

Israel is a significant supplier of weapons to South Sudan.

According to the Channel 2 report, Ziv hired Ron Prosor, a former Israeli ambassador to the United Nations, as part of his work. One idea considered was that Kiir would make a speech at the UN, flanked by a woman who had been raped by soldiers from South Sudan.

Is it inherently racist of Ziv to want to profit from whitewashing a criminal despot like Kiir? Or did Ziv only take advantage of a global white supremacist system where Black lives matter so little that their mass rapes and castrations can be covered up, guilt free?

Either way, Ziv’s conduct was deplorable.

8. Eliyahu Asulin, rabbi

Hatred for African refugees extends even to their children.

In May, the spouses of foreign ambassadors serving in Israel volunteered to help clean up the outdoor play area of a Tel Aviv nursery for African children. Their aid had become necessary because Israelis had defiled the playground with dead animals, garbage and feces.

Refugee children playing in public parks are regularly harassed. In addition to cursing the kids, their harassers make a show of distributing condoms to African refugees, apparently thinking this is a clever way of saying Africans should not bear children, as long as they live in Israel.

But while ordinary Israeli citizens are trying to shame Africans into foregoing their reproductive rights, leading religious figures have been actually harming the reproductive organs of newborn babies.

In November, it emerged that Israeli circumcisers allow trainees without the necessary experience to practice their cutting techniques on the genitals of black and brown babies.

An exposé by Israel’s new public broadcaster Kan revealed that – for an $11,000 fee – Eliyahu Asulin, a popular rabbi, would allow novices who had not completed their professionally mandated studies to perform circumcisions in his stead on infants from African and Asian families.

Unaware that an undercover journalist was filming him, Asulin urged his new “apprentice” to carry out a circumcision ritual on the son of a Filipino woman. The baby’s mother had been misled as she had only consented to a circumcision undertaken by a professional.

In the video, Asulin describes African babies as “cannon fodder.” He says: “Even if your cut isn’t straight, they won’t say anything, because they don’t understand anything.”

After Asulin’s misconduct was publicly exposed, Israel’s chief rabbinate punished him lightly. Asulin was forbidden from training others for three years, but was still permitted to practice circumcision himself.

7. The Petah Tikva killers

In November, 38-year-old Sudanese asylum-seeker Babikir Adham-Uvdo was beaten to death by two Israeli youths outside of the city hall in Petah Tikva, a town near Tel Aviv. Security camera footage of the incident revealed that the youths beat Adham-Uvdo for more than an hour. He was brought to hospital but never recovered, and was disconnected from life-support systems days later.

Although the killing bore similarities to other attacks on Africans, an article in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz stated that “people close” to a suspect in the killing believed it was not a racist incident. Relying on those sources, Haaretz suggested that Adham-Uvdo may have been killed because he “made insulting comments to girls.”

Adham-Uvdo was seen walking and then stopping in front of three 16-year-old girls. The girls shouted at him to leave, and within seconds of first encountering them, Adham-Uvdo raised his hands and walked away.

The 16-year-old boy then attacked Adham-Uvdo from behind; another youth soon joined in, kicking Adham-Uvdo as he lay on the ground.

The video footage also shows that paramedics arrived on the scene midway through the beating. In the video, they are seen tending to Adham-Uvdo but, after a short while, leave him to fend for himself, seemingly satisfied that he no longer requires their aid. Within seconds of their departure, the two young men return and continue the beating.

Two persons have been charged in relation to the incident: one is Dennis Barshivatz, a Petah Tikva local, now aged 20; the other is a 16-year-old, whose name has not been published. An Israeli prosecutor has decided to charge the two with manslaughter, rather than murder.

Some observers noted the parallels between the deaths of Adham-Uvdo and Emmett Till. Till was an African-American teenager who was murdered in Mississippi, beaten until he was unrecognizable, ostensibly for flirting with a white woman.

Till’s killing occurred in 1955, a year after the US Supreme Court declared segregated schools to be unconstitutional. Yet in Israel, segregation remains widespread.

Just three months ago, an Israeli court was told that the Petah Tikvah municipality had hindered African refugees from registering their children for pre-schools in town.

Since the killing of Adham-Uvdo, dozens of African refugees have been arrested in Petah Tikva. The local mayor, Yitzhak Braverman, has approved the arrests.

6. Tal Schwartz, judge

Babikir Adham-Uvdo was the latest, but not the first, African refugee to be lynched in Israel. In October 2015, after a gunman shot and killed an Israeli soldier and wounded about 10 other bystanders in the central bus station complex in Bir al-Saba (Beersheba), a mob of Israelis attacked 29-year-old Eritrean refugee Haftom Zarhum.

Those who took part in the killing included Israeli soldiers, police officers and a prison warden.

People gather around lit candles, some formed into the shape of a cross
Eritreans mourn in south Tel Aviv in 2015 during a memorial ceremony for Haftom Zarhum, who was shot and beaten to death at a bus station in southern Israel after he was mistaken for an assailant in an attack that left an Israeli soldier dead.

Oren ZivActiveStills

In June this year, an Israeli tribunal ruled that prison warden Hananiya Shabbat would not be charged for beating Zarhum with a bench.

Rather than reprimanding Shabbat, Tal Schwartz, a judge in the tribunal, complimented him. Schwartz stated that Shabbat had “acted in a way that is expected of a prison guard, that which is needed to contribute to the positive image of the prison service.”

5. Zion Amir, lawyer

Zion Amir is a lawyer who has defended the rapist and former president of Israel Moshe Katsav.

Amir has represented some of the Israelis accused of firebombing a Palestinian family in the occupied West Bank. Ali Dawabsha, an 18-month-old baby, and his parents were fatally injured in that attack.

So it should come as no surprise that Amir is also defending some of the Israelis charged with the lynching of Eritrean refugee Haftom Zarhum.

In March, Aryeh Deri, Israel’s interior minister, announced that he would appoint Amir to head the government’s advisory panel on refugees.

After Amir had been on the job for four months, Haaretz reported that not even one asylum request had been approved. In that time, more than 1,000 asylum requests were rejected.

4. Roni Alsheikh, police chief

In the year he has occupied the post, Roni Alsheikh, head of Israel’s police, has advanced the idea that African refugees are inherently criminal, giving his officers a green light to attack them.

In August, Alsheikh made his anti-African bias explicit when he told a conference of the Israeli Bar Association: “In all criminological studies worldwide, it has been proven that immigrants are more involved in crime than others.”

Alsheikh’s comments drew strong criticism from Israeli citizens of Ethiopian descent. “With one sentence, the police chief has summarized and confirmed all of our complaints [about police racism],” Ethiopian-Israeli activist Inbar Bugala said, according to Haaretz.

Four uniformed Israeli police officers
Roni Alsheikh, second from right, during a military ceremony near Tel Aviv in February 2016.

Oren ZivActiveStills

Israeli police seem to be especially bothered by communities of color finding common cause in the struggle against Israeli racism.

When Haftom Zarhum was killed by a mob of Israelis in 2015, Bugala wrote on Facebook that a racist lynching had occurred. “Black people have become terrorists – there was no mistaken identification,” she wrote.

Minutes after posting the message, the Israeli police contacted Bugala and demanded that she delete it. The post disappeared from her Facebook page, and though she re-posted it several times, it was taken down after each instance.

3. David Amsalem, lawmaker

While some Israeli officials discriminate against all Africans in equal measure, others advocate opposing policies for Black people, depending on whether the people in question are Jews. Such is the case with David Amsalem, a rookie lawmaker from Likud, the largest party in Israel’s ruling coalition.

Amsalem labors to bring Black Jews to Israel, while working simultaneously to expel Africans who are not Jewish.

In March, when Israeli officials reversed a 2015 decision to facilitate the immigration of 9,000 Falashmura, the extended family members of Ethiopian-Israelis still living in Ethiopia, Amsalem accused the government of racism. “They don’t want to bring Black people to the country from a troubled place,” he said.

In protest, Amsalem refused to vote in favor of government-sponsored legislation, until the Falashmura were allowed to immigrate. The government eventually allowed some Ethiopians to enter Israel. But as punishment for disobeying party discipline, Amsalem was temporarily blocked from proposing laws or speaking in Israel’s parliament, the Knesset.

As chair of the Knesset’s interior and environment committee, however, Amsalem worked to make the already precarious lives of non-Jewish African refugees much more difficult. In November, Amsalem secured committee approval for an amendment to Israel’s Anti-Infiltration Law which would automatically deposit part of the wages paid to African refugee workers in a fund. The refugees would only be able to access the money taken from them when they leave Israel for good.

Refugee advocacy groups have warned Amsalem that the move would further impoverish African refugees, potentially triggering a humanitarian crisis. In a complaint, the groups wrote: “Asylum seekers are liable to find themselves on the streets, children will go hungry, women may turn to prostitution and more.”

Amsalem casually dismissed these appeals, asserting that Africans should be able to survive on their reduced salaries.

2. Aryeh Deri, interior minister

Aryeh Deri speaks at a podium
Aryeh Deri (Sapir College/Wikimedia Commons)

Ever since Benjamin Netanyahu’s re-election as prime minister in 2009, the post of interior minister has been filled by a steady stream of unabashed racists.

Aryeh Deri, the current incumbent, returned to politics in 2012 after a 13-year absence, two of which were spent in prison for corruption. He has developed a reputation for defending Israel’s downtrodden.

Deri’s compassion does not extend to Africans, however. In his first year on the job as interior minister, a post he also held before his downfall, Deri has campaigned with as much enthusiasm as his predecessors to expel African refugees.

In March, Deri told the Knesset’s interior and environment committee that if Israel’s high court won’t permit him to deport African refugees against their will, he would order the construction of an additional facility to imprison them. Since 2013, Israel has held 10,000 African refugees in Holot, a desert detention center.

In April, Deri’s ministry launched an advertising campaign warning Israeli citizens not to hire non-Jewish African refugees, even though a high court ruling allows them to work in Israel.

A week later, the ministry clarified that it would not issue temporary residency visas to the teenage children of African refugees. African teens need these documents because they can be easily mistaken for adults and detained by immigration police who patrol Israel’s cities.

After a migrant rights lawyer appealed against the policy in court, Deri agreed in principle to issue visas for African teens. The lawyer who challenged the policy, Osnat Cohen-Lifshitz, has predicted that it may take a long time before Deri’s agreement is implemented.

In September, a Jerusalem tribunal ruled that fleeing forced service in the Eritrean army can be grounds for refugee status. Determined to deport all Eritreans, who constitute a majority of the African refugees in Israel, Deri protested that the tribunal’s decision would cause “endless trouble” and ordered an immediate appeal.

1. Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister

In 2016, Benjamin Netanyahu held five separate cabinet portfolios, as well as the prime minister’s post. He used the powers at his disposal to deport thousands of African refugees. Without question, the worst of these were the powers Netanyahu continues to wield as Israel’s foreign minister.

When the first wave of refugees from war-torn Darfur started to arrive in Israel 10 years ago, the government argued that they couldn’t be trusted to live in the country because they were from Sudan, a country that does not have diplomatic relations with Israel.

This argument has never made sense, as Darfuri refugees first fled to Israel precisely because they and their families were victims of the Sudanese regime, not supporters of it.

Paradoxically, in September, it emerged that Israel’s foreign ministry has been quietly lobbying the US to forge closer ties with Sudan.

Israel reportedly favored this move because Omar al-Bashir’s government had distanced itself from Iran.

Just two weeks after Netanyahu’s shilling for al-Bashir made news headlines, Amnesty International revealed that the Sudanese leader’s long list of war crimes now also includes the use of chemical weapons in Darfur.

In the past three years, Netanyahu’s government has spent $260 million to round up African refugees and bring them to desert detention centers. Israel has the gall to categorize this massive expenditure as “foreign aid.”

In late September, Netanyahu marked the Jewish new year of Rosh Hashanah with a self-congratulatory address to members of Likud, summarizing his supposed successes from the previous 12 months. Netanyahu boasted of his efforts to deport African refugees.

“Sixty thousand illegals entered,” he said. “Until today we have already removed 20,000, and we will remove another 20,000. We’ll remove all the illegal aliens because they are illegal, even the ones in southern Tel Aviv.”

Netanyahu has made similar boasts in the past. But what set 2016 apart from previous years was his new willingness to not only point out his anti-African policies to Israelis in Hebrew, but also to proudly announce them in English.

Apparently confident that his efforts would be admired abroad, Netanyahu tweeted in March: “A strong Israel prevents the passage of masses of refugees to Europe. The world would be different if we were not here.”

In a year-end opinion piece, the editorial board of Haaretz stated that Netanyahu “should be ashamed,” adding, “Israel can and must accept the 40,000 Africans living here today, along with the 6,000 children who were born here.”

For the eight years that the United States was led by a president of African descent, Netanyahu felt no need to rein in Israel’s war on Africans. Now that Donald Trump, the darling of white supremacists, has been elected to the Oval Office, we can only expect Netanyahu to ramp it up into an even higher gear.

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Turkey’s about-face

NOVANEWS

President Vladimir Putin has announced that he has concluded a cease-fire agreement for Syria, with Turkey, which until now has been the main operational support for the jihadists. How may we explain this astonishing turn of events? Will President Erdoğan be able to turn his country away from the influence of the United States and towards that of Russia? What are the causes and the consequences of this dramatic reversal?

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Turkey is a member of NATO, an ally of Saudi Arabia, a patron of international jihadism since the hospitalisation of prince Bandar ben Sultan in 2012, and godfather of the Muslim Brotherhood since the overthrow of Mohamed Morsi and the quarrel between Doha and Riyad in 2013-14. Besides this, it attacked Russia in November 2015, destroying a Sukhoi-24 and causing the interruption of diplomatic relations with Moscow.

And yet this is the same Turkey which has just sponsored the cease-fire in Syria, imagined by Russia [1]. Why?

Since 2013, Washington no longer considers Recep Tayyip Erdoğan as a trusted partner. The CIA has therefore launched various operations, not against Turkey, but against Mr. Erdoğan personally. In May-June 2013, it organised and supported the Taksim Gezi Park protest movement. During the general elections in June 2015, it financed and supervised the party of the minorities, the HDP, so as to limit the power of the President. It played the same tactic during the elections of November 2015, which the Power had rigged. The CIA then moved on from political influence to secret action. It organised four assassination attempts, the last of which, in July 2016, turned ugly, forcing the Kemalist officers to attempt a coup d’etat for which they were unprepared.

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan therefore finds himself in a position similar to that of the Italian Prime Minister of the 1970’s, Aldo Moro – both men heading a NATO member-state, and both having to face the hostility of the United States. NATO managed to eliminate the Italian by manipulating an extreme left-wing group [2], but has failed to kill the Turk.

Moreover, in order to win the elections in November 2015, Erdoğan flattered the Turko-Mongol supremacists by unilaterally expanding the conflict with the Kurdish minority. By doing so, he added the alleged «nationalists» of the MHP to his Islamist electoral base (AKP). In a few months, he caused the deaths of more than 3,000 ethnically-Kurd Turkish citizens, and destroyed several villages, even certain neighbourhoods of major cities.

Finally, by transmitting arms to al-Qaïda and Daesh which were sent by Saudi Arabia, Qatar and NATO, he wove close relations with the jihadist organisations. He did not hesitate to use the war against Syria to make money for himself. First of all by dismantling and pillaging the factories of Aleppo, then by trafficking the oil and antiques stolen by the jihadists. Progressively, his entire clan became linked with the jihadists. For example, his Prime Minister, mafia gangster Binali Yıldırım, organised factories for the confection of counterfeit goods in the territories administrated by Daesh.

However, the intervention of Hezbollah in the second war against Syria, from July 2012, then that of the Russian Federation, in September 2015, turned the fortunes of war. From this moment on, the gigantic coalition of the «Friends of Syria» lost a lot of the terrain they had occupied, and encountered increasing difficulty in recruiting new mercenaries. Thousands of jihadists deserted the battle-field and fled to Turkey.

But in fact, most of these jihadists are incompatible with Turkish civilisation. Indeed, the jihadists had not been recruited to form a coherent army, but simply to swell the numbers. There were at least 250,000 of them, perhaps even many more. At first, these men were Arab delinquants supervised by the Muslim Brotherhood. Progressively, were added Naqshbandi Sufis from the Caucasus and Iraq, and even young Westerners in a quest for Revolution. This implausible mixture can not hold together if it is displaced to Turkey. First of all because now, what the jihadists want is a state of their own, and it seems impossible to proclaim another Caliphate in Turkey. And then for all sorts of cultural reasons. For example – the Arab jihadists have adopted the Wahhabism of their Saudi benefactors. According to this desert ideology, History does not exist. They have therefore destroyed many antique vestiges, allegedly because the Qu’ran forbids idolatry. While this has not caused problems in Ankara, there is no question of allowing them to touch the Turko-Mongol patrimony.

Thus, today Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has to face three simultaneous enemies – not counting Syria ;
- The United States and their Turkish allies, the FETÖ (Fethullah Terrorist Movement) of the Islamist bourgeois Fethullah Gülen;
- The independentist Kurds, and more particularly, the PKK;
- The Sunni state ambitions of the jihadists, particularly Daesh.

While the main interest of Turkey would be, as a priority, to dial down the interior conflicts with the PKK and the FETÖ, Erdoğan’s personal interest would be to find a new ally. He was the ally of the United States when their influence was at its height, and presently hopes to become the ally of Russia, now the leading conventional military power in the world.

This about-face would seem all the more difficult to navigate since his country is a member of the Atlantic Alliance, an organisation that no-one has ever been able to leave. Perhaps at first he could leave the integrated military command, as France did in 1966. At that time, President Charles De Gaulle had to weather an attempted coup d’etat and numerous assassination attempts by the OAS, an organisation which was financed by the CIA [3].

Even supposing that Turkey might manage to handle this evolution, it would still have to deal with two other major problems.

First of all, although we do not know precisely the number of jihadists in Syria and Iraq, we may estimate that they are are now no more than between 50,000 and 200,000. Given that these mercenaries are massively irrecuperable, what is to be done with them? The cease-fire agreement, the text of which is deliberately imprecise, leaves open the possibility of an attack against them in Idleb. This governorate is occupied by a bevy of armed groups who have no links with one another, but are coordinated by NATO from LandCom in Izmir, via certain «humanitarian» NGO’s. Contrary to Daesh, these jihadists have never learned how to organise themselves correctly, and remain dependent on aid from the Atlantic Alliance. This aid comes to them across the Turkish border, which may soon be closed. However, while it is easy to check trucks which travel on well-defined routes, it is not possible to control the passage of men crossing the fields. Thousands, perhaps even tens of thousands of jihadists could soon flood into Turkey and destabilise it.

Turkey has already begun changing its rhetoric. President Erdoğan accused the United States of continuing to support the jihadists in general and Daesh in particular, suggesting that if he had done the same in the past, it was under the evil influence of Washington. Ankara hopes to make money by handing over the reconstruction of Homs and Aleppo to his construction and public works company. However, it is difficult to imagine how Turkey can escape from its responsibilities, after having paid hundreds of thousands of Syrians to leave their country, after having pillaged the North of Syria, and after having supported the jihadists who have destroyed this country and killed hundreds of thousands of Syrians.

Turkey’s about-face, if it is to be confirmed in the months to come, will provoke a chain-reaction of consequences. Beginning with the fact that President Erdoğan now presents himself not only as the ally of Russia, but also as the partner of Hezbollah and the Islamic Republic of Iran, in other words, the hero of the Chiite world. The end, therefore, of the mirage of Turkey as leader of the Sunni world, fighting the «heretics» with Saudi money. But the artificial inter-Muslim conflict launched by Washington will not end until Saudi Arabia also lets it go.

The extraordinary shift by Turkey is probably difficult to understand for Westerners, according to whom politics are always public affairs. Leaving to one side the arrest of Turkish officers in a NATO bunker in East Aleppo, two weeks ago, it is easier to understand for those who remember the personal rôle of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during the first Chechen war, when he was director of Millî Görüş; a rôle which Moscow has never mentioned, but concerning which the Russian Intelligence services have conserved a quantity of archives. Vladimir Putin has preferred to transform an enemy into an ally, rather than taking him down and having to keep fighting his country. President Bachar el-Assad, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, and Ayatollah Ali Khamenei have gladly followed his lead.

Keep in mind:
- After having hoped to conquer Syria, President Erdoğan now finds himself – due only to his own policies – opposed on three fronts – by the United States and Fethullah Gülen’s FETÖ; by the independentist Kurds of the PKK; and by Daesh.
- These three adveraries might once again be joined by Russia, which has in its possession a wealth of information concerning Erdoğan’s personal record. So President Erdoğan has chosen on the contrary to ally himself with Moscow, and may leave the integrated command of NATO.

[1] The Syrian cease-fire documents (complete)”, “Resolution 2336 (Syrian Ceasefire, Astana Talks)”, Voltaire Network, 31 December 2016.

[2] « La guerre secrète en Italie », par Daniele Ganser, Réseau Voltaire, 6 février 2010.

[3] « Quand le stay-behind voulait remplacer De Gaulle », par Thierry Meyssan, Réseau Voltaire, 10 septembre 2001.

Posted in TurkeyComments Off on Turkey’s about-face

leaders Moved to Afghanistan from Pakistan

NOVANEWS

Image result for balochistan photos

By Sajjad Shaukat

The armed forces of Pakistan have broken the backbone of the Taliban and other militant outfits

by the successful military operation Zarb-e- Azb, which has also been extended to other parts of

the country, including Balochistan. And Pakistan’s intelligence agency, ISI has broken the

network of these terrorist groups by capturing several militants, while thwarting a number of

terror attempts.

Since the government of the Balochistan province announced general pardon and protection to

the Baloch militants as part of reconciliation process, many insurgents and their leaders have

surrendered their arms and decided to work for the development of Pakistan and the province,

peace has been restored in Balochistan. In these circumstances, Taliban leaders have moved to

Afghanistan from Pakistan.

This fact has also been verified by a feature story of the Associated Press (AP), under the

caption, “Leaders of the Taliban may have moved to Afghanistan from Pakistan,” Published on

November 26, 2016.

The AP wrote, “After operating out of Pakistan for more than a decade, the leaders of

Afghanistan’s Taliban movement may have moved back to their homeland to try to build on this

year’s gains in the war and to establish a permanent presence…if confirmed, the move would be

a sign of the Taliban’s confidence in their fight against the US-backed government in Kabul. It

could also be an attempt by the militants to distance themselves from Pakistan.”

The AP reported, “The Taliban’s leaders have been based in Pakistani cities, including Quetta,

Karachi and Peshawar, since their rule in Afghanistan was overthrown in the 2001 US invasion

after the 9/11 attacks.”

According to this news agency, “Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid who said that the

leadership shura, or council, relocated to Afghanistan “some months ago,” although he would not

say to where…one Taliban official said that the shura had moved to southern Helmand province,

which the insurgents consider to be part of their heartland and where most of the opium that

funds their operations is produced. The official refused to be identified because of security

reasons…other Taliban sources said the justice, recruitment and religious councils had also

moved to southern Afghanistan. The statements could not be independently

confirmed…Mujahid, however, said Kabul officials were aware of the moves, prompted by

battlefield gains that the insurgents believed would put them in a strong position once talks with

the Afghan government aimed at ending the war were restarted. Dialogue broke down earlier this

year.”

The AP wrote, “The insurgents have spread their footprint across Afghanistan since international

combat troops scaled down in 2014. They have maintained multiple offensives and threatened at

least three provincial capitals in recent months: Kunduz, in northern Kunduz province; Lashkah

Gar, in Helmand in the south; and Tirin Kot in Uruzgan…the US military has conceded the

insurgents have gained ground, although definitive breakdowns are difficult to verify. This year,

Afghan security forces are believed to have suffered their worst losses since 2001, with the

military estimating 2016 fatalities at more than 5,000 so far.”

It added, “A permanent Taliban presence in Afghanistan would send a message to followers and

fighters that the insurgents now control so much territory that they can no longer be dislodged by

government security forces, said Franz-Michael Mellbin, the European Union’s ambassador in

Kabul…but such a move could also be part of the Taliban’s attempt to try to create a more

independent position, as parts of the Taliban would like to be under less direct pressure from

Pakistan.”

The AP reported, “Ghani has failed to bring them into a dialogue aimed at peace. After a year-

long diplomatic offensive, Ghani in late 2015 cut ties with Islamabad and has since openly

accused Pakistan of waging war on Afghanistan, using the Taliban as its proxy. Pakistani

authorities deny accusations that their powerful ISI intelligence agency supports the

insurgents…with the major councils based in Afghanistan.”

It said, “If the move is confirmed, it could also indicate a unity among leaders, who have recently

been portrayed by some observers, including the US military, as suffering widening divisions

and struggling for cash—even though the opium production under their control has an annual

export value of $4 billion, according to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.”

The news agency mentioned, “The Taliban’s leadership shura consists of 16 elected officials

who oversee activity across Afghanistan, give permission for any changes in planning and

strategy, and mediate disputes among military commanders…the military commanders include

Mullah Yaqoub, the son of the movement's founder, Mullah Mohammad Omar—who was

declared dead last year—and Sirajuddin Haqqani, leader of the brutal Haqqani network and a co-

deputy leader with Yaqoub…the Afghan Taliban are led by Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada,

who took over after the death of Mullah Omar’s successor, Akhtar Mansoor, in a US drone strike

this year. High-ranking Taliban officials say Haibatullah is not engaged in day-to- day decision-

making. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to talk to

reporters.”

The AP disclosed, “A senior Taliban commander, Asad Afghan, told The Associated Press the

move would consolidate the insurgents’ military gains and help lay the ground for a dominant

position if and when peace talks resume…we are in the last stages of war and are moving

forward, said Afghan, who is closely involved in formulating the insurgents' war strategy..we are

the real government in Afghanistan, he said. The move across the border would give the

movement more focus at a time it needs to be quick, clear and more secure about our decisions.”

However, almost all the terrorists or terrorist groups and insurgency in Pakistan, especially

Balochistan have their connections in Afghanistan. The porous border between Pakistan and

Afghanistan is frequently used by human and drug traffickers, criminals and terrorists. Their

easy access through unguarded porous border provides opportunity to miscreants to cause havoc

inside Pakistan and Afghanistan. For effective counter terrorism measures, strong border-control

management is vital at Pak-Afghan border. But, Afghan rulers are using delaying tactics in this

respect by rejecting Islamabad’s positive proposals.

Notably, as part of the dual strategy, based in Afghanistan, American CIA, Indian RAW and

Israeli Mossad are in connivance with the Afghan intelligence agency, National Directorate of

Security (NDS) and other terrorist groups. Based in Afghanistan, operatives of these foreign

agencies who are well-penetrated in the terrorist outfits like Islamic State group (Also known as

Daesh, ISIS, ISIL), Tehreek-e- Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and their affiliated Taliban groups are

using their militants to destabilize Tibetan regions of China, Iranian Sistan-Baluchistan and

Pakistan’s Balochistan by arranging the subversive activities. In this connection, the China-

Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is their special target. The militant groups have conducted

several terror attacks in various regions of Pakistan, especially the recent ones in Balochistan

province which has become center of the Great Game owing to the ideal location of Balochistan.

There is no doubt that as part of the double game of their countries, escalation of tension at Pak-

Afghan border is deliberately engineered by the elements such as CIA, RAW and Mossad which

are opposed to peace talks and improvement of bilateral relations between Pakistan and

Afghanistan. Hence, their countries always shift the blame game to Pakistan.

Undoubtedly, Afghan peace and reconciliation process is a reality, despite of its slow pace and

continual interruptions. The positive trajectory of constructive relations between Islamabad and

Kabul raised alarm-bells amongst the US-led adversaries who are attempting to affect the

progressive Pak-Afghan relations through smear and sinister scheming.

Although Taliban leaders have moved to Afghanistan from Pakistan, yet especially America,

India and puppet rulers of Afghanistan will continue blame game against Islamabad, because,

despite the prolonged war of more than 15 years, the US-led entities or NATO have failed in

coping with the resistance of those Taliban who are fighting for the liberation of their country.

America, India, Israel and some Western countries are also against Pakistan, as the latter is the

only nuclear country in the Islamic World.

Posted in Afghanistan, Pakistan & KashmirComments Off on leaders Moved to Afghanistan from Pakistan

WPost’s New ‘Fake News’ on Russian ‘Hack’g

NOVANEWS

Exclusive: The Washington Post’s latest folly – falsely reporting a Russian “hack” into Vermont’s electric grid – reflects the paper’s steep decline from the days of Watergate, reports ex-British intelligence officer Annie Machon.

By Annie Machon

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) has been hacked – cue a national American trauma, allegations of dirty tricks, fears that democracy has been subverted, all leading to what the next U.S. president would call “our long national nightmare.”

The Washington Post building in downtown Washington, D.C. (Photo credit: Washington Post)

But, no, I am not talking about the current Russo-phobic hysteria currently engulfing the mainstream U.S. media, replete with claims about “fake news,” expelled Russian diplomats, and a lack of skepticism about the evidence-lite hacking allegations.

Instead, I am dipping back into history – the old Watergate scandal – when Richard Nixon’s “plumbers” stole information the old-fashioned way; they broke into the DNC offices, rifled the files and planted listening devices. On June 17, 1972, when police captured five burglars inside the DNC offices at the Watergate building in Washington, the case slowly unfolded over the next two years until President Nixon resigned on Aug. 9, 1974, and was replaced by Vice President Gerald Ford who declared “our long national nightmare is over.”

During those two years, The Washington Post became internationally and justifiably famous for breaking the story about Nixon’s role in the Watergate cover-up and – since then – generations of cub reporters have dreamed of being the next Woodward and Bernstein. Besides leading to the downfall of the mendacious and paranoid Nixon, the scandal contributed to the reining in of an out-of-control intelligence establishment culminating in the Church Committee hearings of 1975.

What followed was greater, if unfortunately temporary, control of the U.S. intelligence agencies and at least an apparent respect for the rights of American citizens under the terms of the U.S. Constitution. The work of The Washington Post then was indeed relevant and world-changing.

The movie depiction of the Post’s investigation, “All the President’s Men” celebrated this exposé and confirmed in Western minds that our wonderful free press spoke truth to power. And perhaps, in this case, the press did (although I have to say that I preferred the meltdown scene in the prophetic movie, “The Network,” which envisioned the slide of the news media into ratings-driven madness).

Lost Credibility

But – regarding The Washington Post – how the mighty have fallen. Over the past couple of months, the Post has blown what was left of its journalistic reputation out of the water.

The Washington Post’s Watergate team, including from left to right, publisher Katharine Graham, Carl Bernstein, Bob Woodward, Howard Simons, and executive editor Ben Bradlee.

First it unblushingly reported the PropOrNot “blacklist” of “fake news” Internet sites that were allegedly working at the Kremlin’s command to swing the U.S. election to Donald Trump, except that the list encompassed many of the most reputable independent (i.e., not U.S. corporate-owned) English-language international news sites (including Consortiumnews.com). Threatened with angry writs from some of the sites, the paper quickly printed a disclaimer distancing itself from the anonymous people behind PropOrNot, but still not apologizing for the McCarthyistic smear.

Then, last Friday, the newspaper was at it again – breathlessly reporting that the Vermont energy grid was apparently hacked by the scapegoat du jour, Russia. Although there should have been obvious questions asked: Why Vermont? What has that state ever done to Russia? Well, not much as it turns out; nor Russia to Vermont.

Yet again the Post has revised its reporting down to the fact that a laptop, completely unconnected to the grid, according to the energy provider’s statement, had been infected by malware. In other words, there was no Russian hacking into the Vermont power grid.

And yet, because it’s The Washington Post, this fake breaking “news” was taken seriously and metastasized through the body politic of America and beyond. This Russian hacking became a “post-truth” reality, no matter how fact-free the original story. (I hereby propose a #factfreediet for us all on Twitter for January, so we can highlight this phenomenon.)

Explaining Why

But here are the obvious next questions: Why did this non-story appear in The Washington Post and why now? Has The Washington Post suddenly fallen prey to a revamped Operation Mockingbird, its editorial staff stuffed to the gills with CIA agents of influence?

Amazon’s founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post.

As I have written before, the CIA and its associates within the Deep State appear to be hell bent on undermining the legitimacy of the Trump election result and this hyping of Russian hacking is one of the key weapons in this struggle. So perhaps the Deep State players are (re)activating a few agents of influence in the mainstream American media?

But there may possibly be a more tangential explanation for The Washington Post’s plunge into fiction: Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com and one of the wealthiest people in the world. Amazon is not only the favorite purveyor of all goods online, but also suspected (at least in the U.K.) of massive tax avoidance scams as well as abusive employment practices in the same country.

Bezos is also, since 2013, the proud owner of The Washington Post, a purchase that heralded his unexpected business swerve into the old mainstream media. The deal to buy the newspaper was reported in the business press to have cost him $250 million.

Interestingly in the same year Amazon cut a deal to develop a cloud-based service for the CIA – a deal worth a reported $600 million over ten years. It also appears that this service has expandedacross all 17 of America’s intelligence agencies, so who can tell what it might be worth to Amazon now and in the future?

It is no doubt just an interesting coincidence that the Bezos-owned Washington Post is the fount of the current stream of CIA assertions that the Russians are hacking key U.S. institutions, starting with the DNC – which then somehow became “hacking the election” – and now the utility grid. Bezos himself has asserted that he exerts no direct control over the editorial decisions of the newspaper, and he has left in place many of the neoconservative editors who preceded his stewardship, so there may not be any need for direct orders.

Of course, all state-level players, including the Russians and certainly the Americans, are going to be probing the basic systems underpinning all our countries for vulnerabilities. That is what intelligence agencies do, and it is also what mercenary spy companies do on behalf of their corporate clients, and what hackers (either of the criminal flavor or the socially-minded hacktivists) do too. The dodgy malware, the code, and the vulnerabilities are all out there, often for sale or squirreled away by the national spy agencies for potential future advantage.

Whatever the truth about the DNC hacking allegations, The Washington Post sadly seems uninterested in properly pursuing it – indeed it seems interested in little beyond pursuing the specific political agenda of fanning a dangerous distrust of Russia and undermining the legitimacy of President-elect Trump.

If such a compliant corporate culture had existed back in 1972 at the time of the first DNC “hack,” the Watergate scandal would surely never have been exposed. And the old media still wonders why it is no longer trusted?

Annie Machon is a former intelligence officer in the UK’s MI5 Security Service (the U.S. counterpart is the FBI).

Posted in USAComments Off on WPost’s New ‘Fake News’ on Russian ‘Hack’g

Arms Trade Treaty Falling Down in Yemen

NOVANEWS

Image result for SAUDI WAR IN YEMEN CARTOON

Two years after the UN Arms Trade Treaty entered into force, many of the governments which championed the treaty are failing to uphold it, especially when it comes to the conflict in Yemen.

“In terms of implementation, the big disappointment is Yemen,” Anna Macdonald, Director of Control Arms, a civil society organisation dedicated to the treaty, told IPS.

“The big disappointment is the countries that were in the forefront of calling for the treaty — and indeed who still champion it as a great achievement in international disarmament and security — are now prepared to violate it by persisting in their arms sales to Saudi Arabia,” she added.

The Saudi-led international coalition has been responsible for thousands of civilian deaths in Yemen, and Saudi Arabia is known to have violated humanitarian law by bombing civilian targets, including hospitals.

The conflict in Yemen — the poorest country in the Middle East — has displaced over 3 million people since it began in March 2015 according to the UN.

However, many countries, including the United Kingdom, United States and France, that have signed up to the Arms Trade Treaty continue to sell weapons to Saudi Arabia, despite this violating their commitments under the treaty.

Currently, 90 UN member states are parties to the treaty, which Macdonald says is a relatively high number for such a new and complex treaty, but the goal remains universalisation, she adds. The treaty entered into force on 24 December 2014. However while the U.K. and France have ratified the treaty, the U.S. has only signed the treaty.

Parties to the treaty are obligated to ensure that weapons they sell will not be used to violate international humanitarian law, commit genocide or commit crimes against humanity.

The U.K.’s sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia has been the subject of intense debate in British parliament.

Saudi authorities recently confirmed that they have used UK-made cluster munitions in Yemen.

“Evidence of cluster munition use has been available for almost a year, but the U.K. has ignored and disputed it, trusting instead in the Saudi-led coalition’s denials,” said Macdonald.

“The UK is continuing to ignore the vast amount of information of violations of human rights and the laws of war in Yemen, (recent developments) make even plainer how unfeasible such a position is.”

The UK which sold the weapons to Saudi Arabia in 1989 has since signed up to the Cluster Munitions Convention, which prohibits the sale of cluster munitions because of their indiscriminate nature, Macdonald added.

Meanwhile, recent reports suggest the United States is curtailing at least some of its arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

“The U.S. has said it will halt the sale of precision-guided aerial bombs to Saudi Arabia because they have seen “systemic, endemic problems with Saudi Arabia’s targeting” that the U.S. says has led to high numbers of civilian casualties in Yemen,” said Macdonald.

However, she noted that it is hard to know what effect this will have on policies under the incoming Trump Republican administration.

According to research published by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) the world’s top three arms exporters are the United States, Russia and China.

India, Saudi Arabia and China are the world’s top three arms importers.

Posted in Saudi Arabia, YemenComments Off on Arms Trade Treaty Falling Down in Yemen

The Plight Of Millions Of Palestinian Refugees Is Hidden In Plain View

NOVANEWS
In her first on-the-ground report “Inside Palestine’s Refugee Camps”, Abby Martin of The Empire Files, gives an eye-opening look at two of the most attacked refugee camps in the West Bank of Palestine: Balata (near Nablus) and Aida (near Bethlehem) camps.
There have been millions of Palestinians living in crowded refugee camps since 1948 when they were forced from their homes by the advancing Zionists during the founding of the modern, secular, apostate state of Israel. Meanwhile, millions of American Christians are oblivious to the plight of Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus, where it is being walled off by Israel. (See our story, Israel Is Walling Off Bethlehem, The Birth Place of Jesus“)
Watch the 26 minute report:

Posted in Palestine AffairsComments Off on The Plight Of Millions Of Palestinian Refugees Is Hidden In Plain View

Nazi regime Is Walling Off Bethlehem

NOVANEWS

Israel Is Walling Off Bethlehem, The Birth Place of Jesus

Millions of American Christians are unaware of the plight of the city of Bethlehem and its Palestinian inhabitants in the West Bank of Palestine. The Israeli built separation wall snakes its way around Bethlehem, even cutting off Palestinians from their own land and nearby Jerusalem. This story is courageously told by Palestinian filmmaker, Leila Sansour in her Open, Bethlehem documentary that is part of a campaign to educate her fellow Christians and the world about the stranglehold by Israel that is slowly causing Palestinian Christians to leave the Holy Land because of the hardships imposed by the military occupation.

To increase the awareness of what is happening to Bethlehem, a Bethlehem Passport is being issued by the OPEN, BETHLEHEM campaign in partnership with the Governorate of Bethlehem.  So far, the passport has been granted to more than 500 people around the world, including church leaders and heads of states, such as Archbishop Rowan Williams, Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and President Jimmy Carter. The passport states: “In that the bearer of this passport is a citizen of Bethlehem; that they recognize this ancient city provides a light to the world, and to all people who uphold the values of a just and open society; that they will remain a true friend to Bethlehem through its imprisonment, and that they will strive to keep the ideals of Bethlehem alive as long as the wall stands; we ask you to respect the bearer of the passport and to let them pass freely.” Showings of Open, Bethlehem are starting in the United States after a successful introduction in the UK. Check the website for a showing near you or to organize one in your town. Also, the complete documentary can be seen on line (Click Here). For more information on Liela Sansour’s campaign to bring down the wall around Bethlehem check out the Huffington Post UK article.

The Israeli Separation wall in Bethlehem snakes around three sides of the home of a Palestinian Christian family, the Anastas. If more American Christians knew what is happening to the birth place of their Savior, Jesus, they would pray and work for an equitable solution to the Israel/Palestine conflict.

This is the 4 minute trailer for Open, Bethlehem:

Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZIComments Off on Nazi regime Is Walling Off Bethlehem

The World Must Learn From Cuba

NOVANEWS

"Cuba’s achievements expose the very limited, and often deplorable, nature of capitalist democracy."

By: Joe Emersberger

  • “Cuba’s achievements expose the very limited, and often deplorable, nature of capitalist democracy.

On the anniversary of the Cuban Revolution, why has the small Caribbean nation outperformed many capitalist democracies in key ways despite fifty years of attack?

According to UNICEF’s most recent statistics (updated to 2015), Cuba, for almost two decades, has had a lower child mortality rate than the United States. That’s an astounding human rights achievement – especially when you consider that Cuba has been under merciless assault by the United States for over fifty years – an assault that has included major acts of terrorism (like blowing up a factory and killing hundreds of workers in the middle of the Cuban missile crisis) not simply economic strangulation.

RELATED: Cuba-Trained Doctors Head to Standing Rock

What Cuba has accomplished while under sustained attack by a superpower shames every capitalist democracy in Latin America. There is no excuse for any having a higher child mortality rate than Cuba today, not even the countries that were the farthest behind Cuba when Castro seized power in 1959. Being stuck with depraved dictators like the Duvaliers or Somozas absolves the people of those countries (their victims) but not the political systems, and certainly not their sponsors in Washington. If every country in Latin America and the Caribbean had Cuba’s child mortality rate, there would have been about 136,000 fewer child deaths in the region in 2015 alone. People who scoff at Cuba’s achievements in health care are being contemptuous of human life, not only human rights.

In fairness, there are times when U.S. imperialists identify health care as a basic human right. Human Rights Watch recently did an extensive report on Venezuela’s struggling health care system but, shockingly, did not cite UNICEF statistics on child or infant mortality because they contradicted many of HRW’s claims.

The table below shows child mortality in Cuba and other selected countries according to UNICEF’s most recent data.

Kuwait and Saudi Arabia are two fabulously oil-rich dictatorships that are staunchly backed by the U.S. government. In fact, the United States went to war to re-install Kuwait’s dictatorship after it was overthrown by Iraq’s invasion in 1990. Chile spent decades under Pinochet’s dictatorial rule which was often praised by the international corporate media for its far right economic policies. Costa Rica is sometimes offered as example of what Cuba might have achieved “without repression”. Cuba, without exceptional natural wealth and despite decades of ferocious U.S. sabotage, has outperformed them all in reducing child mortality. Why? There are two general reasons.

Go ahead and blow off steam. We’ll ignore you.

I agree with people who say that “freedom of expression” is an end in itself – not just a way to get good public policy. However, extreme concentrations of wealth “take the risk out of democracy” as Alex Carey put it. If elites can dominate the means of communication then being able to publicly express harsh criticism of the government will have minimal impact on policy. Health care policy in the United States is a striking example. Public opinion has simply been dismissed. A closely related problem is the stunning ignorance that elites impose through control of the media while still allowing some dissent.

Cuba’s government does not tolerate dissent through the mass media, but, as Avi Chomsky observed in a detailed study “Cuban citizens nominate candidates and vote in secret ballot elections; they participate in mass organizations; they participate in neighborhood, workplace, and municipal where real problems are discussed and debated, and decisions made.”

The exceptional health outcomes Cuba has achieved under severe constraints point to a government that actually responds to the public’s concerns – and that does provide avenues for dissent to be expressed. I will anger some friends by saying that this does not make Cuba a democracy, but it does expose the absurdity of governments that congratulate themselves for allowing dissent while also ignoring widespread public dissatisfaction and disillusionment with impunity.

Spend forty hours a week under dictatorial rule – if you’re lucky.

Dictatorial workplaces (a key way to ensure elite control over wealth and investment decisions) are much more crucial feature of capitalism than competitive markets. Capitalists are often opposed to competitive markets as U.S. economist Dean Baker has often explained – most recently in his new book “Rigged.”

If you are lucky enough to have a steady job, even if you are lucky enough have a strong union that protects your income and dignity in the workplace, you are still spending a great deal of your life under dictatorial rule. Unions mitigate the dictatorial powers of CEOs and elite shareholders. Unions do not change the basic fact that ultimate control over investment and productions rests with an elite whose enrichment is deemed the highest priority. The arguments for allowing workplace dictatorship are no more compelling than arguments for dictatorship as a form of government. If workers in capitalist democracies spend so much of their lives under dictatorial rule at work, it should not be surprising that so many capitalist democracies compare poorly with Cuba in important ways. I am not arguing that workplaces are more democratic in Cuba than in most countries. I am saying that capitalism imposes such serious and barely discussed constraints on democracy that the distinction between “democracy” in many countries and “dictatorship” in Cuba is not as great as is typically assumed.

RELATED: When Africa Called, Fidel and Cuba Answered

Cuba’s achievements expose the very limited, and often deplorable, nature of capitalist democracy. That said, leftists in the United States and other rich western countries make a grave error when they exaggerate the shortcomings of U.S. democracy to such an extent that they embrace defeatism. The saying that “if voting could change anything it would be illegal” is quite dysfunctional. However, it is true that one cannot vote corporate power away in a single election.

I’ve focussed on Cuba’s child mortality rate, but, given the threat to human existence posed by the impact of human activity on the climate, it should be noted that Cuba has achieved rich country health outcomes with only a tiny fraction of the CO2 emissions per capita and without using nuclear power. With all its faults, if Cuba’s system spread to the entire world, humans could at least survive to work on eliminating those faults. The same cannot be said for capitalism. Learning from Cuba should be a high priority if we value survival.

Posted in CUBAComments Off on The World Must Learn From Cuba

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