Archive | October 24th, 2017

Good News: George Soros was dead!

NOVANEWS

Literally a few hours ago the world was in shock – George Soros was dead! He was found dead in the Burj al Arab hotel in Dubai. He was 87 years old.

From what we now know, the cause of death was heart attack. The death of a Jewish billionaire caused a huge stir in Dubai. The whole hotel was surrounded by the police and the army in just over an hour and a half. All guests in the hotel are prohibited from leaving until the end of the matter. Nobody can enter it. The UAE authorities are already in place, and even Jacob Rothschild has appeared on one of the journalists.

At 11:30 AM, George Soros was to meet Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Makotum. He did not appear at the meeting. Concerned by this situation, the sheikh went to the Burj al-Arab hotel where Soros had recently been staying. From one of the consignees, he learned that he had never been a sign of life since last night! Mohammed ordered him to enter his room and check what had happened. There he saw him dead, lying beside the bed. He immediately alarmed the hotel manager and called the ambulance. But it was too late … George Soros had been dead for many hours.

It was initially determined that death occurred between the hours of 21 and 22, the day before yesterday. After the corpses will know more about this. For the time being, the police refuse to provide explanations.

“My father has been complaining about a nagging sting in his chest for several weeks now,” said Al Jazeera to his son, Alexander Soros. Then he added: “The message of his death fell on me like a thunderbolt from the clear sky. I believe that I am able to substitute it with dignity. ”

The condolences of Georg Soros have already passed. Angela Merkel, Emmanuel Macron and Donald Trump, and in Poland – Adam Michnik, who quoted here: “The world has lost a unique philanthropist and businessman today.” Gazeta Wyborcza awarded him the title of “man of the year” in 2000.

It is not known when and where the funeral of the Jewish billionaire will take place. It is only known that it will be intimate, for a narrow group of people.

We can’t confirm that the information given in this form is true, complete and accurate. We just transfering the information from: https://wstroneswiadomosci.blogspot.mk/2017/10/george-soros-nie-zyje.html

Source: https://wstroneswiadomosci.blogspot.mk/2017/10/george-soros-nie-zyje.html

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Informing on Other Jews for Violating American Law: A Jewish Law View

NOVANEWS

torah1

Even though Jewish law expects people to observe the law of the land, and even imposes that obligation as a religious duty, the Talmud recounts — in a number of places — that it is prohibited to inform on Jews to the secular government, even when their conduct is a violation of secular law and even when their conduct is a violation of Jewish law.

While there are a number of exceptions to this prohibition (which are explained further in this section), the essential halacha was that Jewish law prohibits such informing absent specific circumstances. Even if secular government were to incorporate substantive Jewish law into secular law and punish violations of what is, in effect, Jewish law, Jews would still be prohibited from cooperating with such a system.

Indeed, classical Jewish law treats a person who repeatedly informs on others as a pursuer (a rodef) who may be killed to prevent him from informing, even without a formal court ruling. CONTINUE READING

 

https://www.facebook.com/431256660252368/videos/1659138967464125/

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Remembering Muammar Qaddafi and the Great Libyan Jamahiriya

October 20th, 2017, marks the sixth anniversary of the martyrdom of Muammar Qaddafi, revolutionary Pan-Africanist and champion of the Global South. This day also marks the sixth anniversary of the historic battle of Sirte, where Qaddafi, along with an heroic army, including his son Mutassim Billal Qaddafi, and veteran freedom fighter, Abu-Bakr Yunis Jabr, fought until their convoy was bombed by French fighter planes. Wounded and demobilized, they were captured by Qatari scavengers and executed by Al-Qaeda operatives.

The courageous men of the original Free Officers’ Union, who were guides and leaders of the then 42 year-old Al-Fatah Revolution, demonstrated extraordinary revolutionary fortitude, heroism and audacity in the face of their enemies. As young men in their twenties, they overthrew the Western-installed Libyan monarchy and ushered in the Jamahiriya, and as elders in their seventies, they refused to leave Libya, and instead, fought to the bitter end, on the frontlines, alongside their people. Their example will forever shine as an eternal light in the hearts of all those who struggled alongside them to build the closest thing to a real democracy, and a United States of Africa, that modern history has ever seen. The execution of Muammar Qaddafi and those that fought alongside him, and the destruction of the Libyan Jamahiriya is one of the greatest crimes of this century.

Circa 1970: Muammar Qaddafi with members of the Free Unionist Officers who later formed
the Revolutionary Command Council. Far right is Abu-Bakr Yunis Jabr who, at 71 years of age, was captured alongside Qaddafi at the Battle of Sirte.

Those responsible, including Nicolas Sarkozy, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, David Cameron, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and Emir Tamin bin Hamad Al Thani, should be tried for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Heroes: the millions of armed Libyan men and women who stepped up to defend their Revolution

What we knew all along is now a substantiated and indisputable fact – there was never a mass uprising in Benghazi or anywhere in Libya. The Libyan people in their millions made it clear that they supported the Al-Fatah Revolution.

During the invasion of Libya, 1.7million people – 95% of the population of Tripoli and one third of the entire population of Libya – gathered in downtown Tripoli in what has been called the largest demonstration in world history to support Qaddafi and the revolution. Syrians living in Libya can be seen in the centre of the photo waving the Syrian flag.

A coalition of the wicked, comprising US/NATO forces, the semi-feudal Arab regimes of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Sudan, and a rag-tag bunch of monarchists and al-Qaeda linked terrorists inside Libya, that had been working with the CIA and M15 for decades, was assembled, and united in their goal. For them, total destruction was the only solution.

Every attempt was made by Qaddafi and his supporters to negotiate a peaceful solution, including inviting international observers into the country to see for themselves what was really taking place, something the imperialists could not allow to happen. This was their golden opportunity to destroy Qaddafi and the Jamahiriya, a plan they had been waiting to execute for years. There were mass uprisings on either side of Libya, in Tunisia and Egypt. The West had already coined the term “Arab Spring” and was busy hijacking revolts elsewhere. Time was of the essence. In fact, in what can only be described as a frenzy, they may have set a world record for the speed with which they managed to push through the illegal resolution at the UN, their cover for the invasion. The fake news and false narrative machine was in full swing. Within 24 hours, UN bodies had transformed Qaddafi from a person about to receive the UN Human Rights Award into a man killing his own people. The Jamahiriya was targeted for destruction and nothing was going to stop them.

Foreign forces, including the CIA, Dutch Marines, French and Sudanese military personnel, Qatari Special Forces, Al Qaeda fighters – facilitated by the Saudis, as they are facilitating Al Qaeda in Yemen today, were all in place weeks before the staged protests began in Benghazi in February 2011. This was a well-planned and coordinated operation.

“Sometimes the enemy is the best teacher”

Kwame Ture, revolutionary Pan-Africanist and former executive member of the World Mathaba, opined that sometimes the enemy is the best teacher. He instructed us to study the enemy’s strategy and tactics and to remember that the enemy only goes after those whom they deem to be a real threat to their imperial interests. Pan-Africanist and former president of Guinea, Ahmed Sekou Toure, said that, “if the enemy is not bothering with you, then know that you are doing nothing”.

The forces of US-EU imperialism were always bothering Muammar Qaddafi. They were bent on discrediting, demonizing and finding a way to obliterate him and the Libyan Jamahiriya from its inception in 1969, until they finally achieved their nefarious objective in 2011.

Referring to Qaddafi as “the mad dog of the Middle-East”, Ronald Reagan, in a nationwide broadcast, said that Qaddafi’s goal was “world revolution”, claiming that he (Qaddafi) was promoting “a Muslim fundamentalist revolution, which targeted many of his own Arab compatriots.”

There is an African saying: “Mouth open, story jump out”. What Ronald Reagan was describing sounds like the imperialist plan. It was Ronald Reagan who welcomed leaders of the Afghan Mujahadeen who were fighting the Soviets at the time, to the Oval Office and referred to them as Jihadi freedom fighters. Today as we face Al Qaeda and their various offshoots, including the infamous ISIL, we are witnessing the devastating results of this sinister imperialist game plan. Ever since the days when the British colonial forces facilitated the creation of the Wahhabi kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the imperialists have encouraged, supported and funded the growth of Islamic fundamentalist groups. They understood that this was imperative if they were to counter the resurgence of an Islamic theology of liberation, in the revolutionary tradition of Abu Dharr al Ghifari, and as propounded in contemporary times by outstanding Islamic thinkers, such as Muammar Qaddafi, Ali Shariati, Kaukab Siddique, Ayatollah Mahmoud Taleghani, Muhammad Iqbal and Mahmoud Ayoub.

Again, we can learn from the enemy. Just as the imperialists and right-wing Christian fundamentalists waged an unrelenting war against the Social Gospel Movement and Christian liberation theology, as articulated by revolutionary theologians such as Gustavo Gutierrez, Miguel Bonino, James Cone and Enrique Dussel, they knew very well that Islamic liberation theology must be countered. The enemy understood the power of this theology in term of its ability to act as a bulwark against the imperial hegemon. They knew that this authentic and revolutionary Islam would prevent them from exercising control over an awakened Muslim World.

Reagan was right about one thing, Muammar Qaddafi indeed had a goal of world revolution – it was a revolution that would put the tenets of Islamic liberation theology into practice. Qaddafi’s conception of this revolution was holistic. His revolution would challenge every aspect of Eurocentric epistemology and its inherent racism. The Libyan revolution was more than a social, political and economic revolution; it was nothing short of a spiritual and cultural revolution. This confounded not only the imperialist powers but also their reactionary Arab satraps.

The World Mathaba

The World Mathaba, established by Muammar Qaddafi in 1982, had as its stated mission, “to resist imperialism, racism, fascism, Zionism, colonialism and neo-colonialism”.

The Mathaba denotes a place where people gather for a noble purpose. Based in Libya, it became a meeting place for revolutionary and progressive forces from all over the world. Similar to the House of Wisdom in Baghdad, which became a major intellectual center during the Islamic Golden Age and the University of Sankore in Timbuktu, where scholars of the day converged to discuss and debate ideas and formulate new ideas, the Mathaba became a forum for the advancement of a Third Universal Theory beyond Capitalism and Communism. Prior to the Mathaba, the only international formations for progressive and revolutionary organizations had been the Soviet dominated Comintern, that demanded an ideological allegiance to Marxism-Leninism and the Socialist International, which brought together social-democratic parties. The ideological rigidity of these two international formations excluded organizations and movements that rejected Eurocentric ideologies, including many Indigenous and Pan-African organizations who found a home in the World Mathaba.

Through the Mathaba, Qaddafi assisted all those who were fighting for liberation and self-determination, regardless of whether or not it was in Libya’s geo-political interests to do so. Under Qaddafi’s visionary leadership, material assistance and moral support was provided to the oppressed from every corner of the earth, regardless of religion or ideology. All were helped – from the Roma people of Eastern Europe to the Kanak people of New Caledonia in the Southwest Pacific, to the Rohinga people, who are presently being ethnically cleansed by the Buddhist chauvinists of Myanmar, and who the UN recently referred to as “the most friendless people”. What the hypocritical UN body failed to mention was that they once had a friend in Muammar Qaddafi.

Qaddafi noted on many occasions that the Libyan Revolution had a sacred duty to help all those who were in legitimate need and suffering persecution, since this was in accordance the teachings of the Quran, which was Libya’s constitution The bedrock of Islam is to enjoin that which is good and condemn that which is wrong and unjust. Any Muslim, regardless of their interpretation of Quranic teachings, will admit that the Quran clearly states that the weakest response to injustice is to hate it in your heart, the second weakest response is to speak against it and the strongest response is to oppose it in every way possible.

Leader of the Philippine based Moro National Liberation Front, Nur Misuari, in a lecture he delivered in 1990 at the Green World Institute in Tripoli, explained that inserting the word “Islamic” into the name of a country or organization, like the ‘Islamic Republic of Pakistan’ or ‘Moro Islamic Liberation Front’ did not make the country or organization Islamic.

Declaring yourself an “Islamic” country like Saudi Arabia and Qatar does not make you Islamic. To be a truly Islamic society and nation, there has to be a spiritual revolution. A revolution that raises the spiritual consciousness of the people. A revolution that counters the false Islam that the oppressors promote, that abolishes capitalism and the semi-feudal social relations sustained by the ruling elites in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the UAE and Sudan. This is why Qaddafi was such a threat to the imperialists and their Muslim surrogates. He was not only propounding dangerous ideas, he was building a new society – a Jamahiriya – a state of the masses, a real democracy based on the revolutionary teachings of the Quran, which according to South African political scientist, Themba Sono, “created conditions for the many to rule themselves”. Sono goes on to explain,

“For Qaddafi, this is part of the natural order in which the majority rules themselves rather than for a minority to exercise power over a majority… Qaddafi denies that the emanations from the activity of electoral participants can never be called rule, not only because such rule would be unethical and thereby unstable, but also because it would contradict the very essence and fundamental tenet of democracy, which is, to be tautological, that, naturally, free people must and can rule themselves.”

It was a dangerous precedent that the imperialists could not allow to continue.

As Sono notes in his book, The Qaddafi Green Syndrome: Shaking the Foundations:

“Qaddafi does not care to investigate whether or not the people are capable of ruling themselves, for he asks the question, how do we do that without giving the people, not only the right but the opportunity to do so? Who is to know beforehand and therefore to decide a priori that the people are not qualified to rule themselves?”

Dangerous Ideas Indeed

Applying the principles of Qaddafi’s Third Universal Theory transformed Libya from one of the poorest countries in the world, to not only one of the most prosperous countries in Africa, but in many respects, one of the most prosperous countries worldwide.

Facts and figures substantiate this claim. Libya had no foreign debt and actually deposited payments from oil revenue into the bank accounts of its citizens. As is by now well documented, Libyans had access to free quality healthcare, free education from nursery to university level, rent free housing, free electricity, subsidized food – a very high standard of living. Imperialists hate these types of precedents. What if, upon seeing these achievements, other nations decided to disregard the Western-style systems of governance and the neo-liberal capitalist model that simply widens the gap between have and have-nots?

What if countries in Africa, seeing Libya’s advancement and prosperity, decided to rid themselves of the bogus liberal-democratic tradition that empowers 1% of humanity to rule over 99%? What if others decided to reject the multi-party electoral circus, designed to divide and fragment our countries along ethnic and tribal lines, and instead, opted for a Jamahiriya or State of the Masses?

Once asked by a journalist, what was the one thing he wanted to achieve most in his lifetime, Qaddafi replied, “to change the world”. And he was coming close. Muammar Qaddafi and the empowered Libyan Jamahiriya were leading the movement to establish a United States of Africa, with a united military and a single currency, a dinar backed by Africa’s gold reserves. This would have actually dethroned the US dollar and shifted the global economic imbalance.

This would have indeed changed the world.

So, on October 20, 2011, the Satanic forces that had been at war with Qaddafi and the Libyan Jamahiriya from its inception in 1969, dealt their final blow to the man known to revolutionaries throughout the world as the Brother-Leader, and to revolutionary Muslims throughout Africa and the world, as the “Commander of the Faithful”.

“If they get past Libya, they are coming for you…”

Six years later and the fallout from this criminal act is still being felt everywhere. Key development projects throughout Africa, financed by Libya, have all grounded to a halt. Saudi Arabia and Qatar, key players in Libya’s demise, are now busy grabbing large tracts of land in Africa. This would not have been possible if Qaddafi was alive. The expansion of AFRICOM, the expansion of US military bases, and the building of new military bases by the Chinese and the Turks in Africa would also not have been possible if Qaddafi was alive. Indeed, there would have been a fierce resistance to the current recolonization and re-carving of Africa if Muammar Qaddafi was alive and the Libyan Jamahiriya was flourishing as before.

Of course, the urgent need to recolonize an Africa that was awakening to its own power and ability to unite and self-determine was the very reason for the overthrow of Qaddafi and the Libyan revolution. It is not surprising that the French led the charge. In March 2008, former French president, Jacques Chirac said, “Without Africa, France would slide down into the rank of a Third World power”. As early as 1957, long before he became president, Francois Mitterrand said, “Without Africa, France will have no history in the 21st century”.

Libya has been transformed into a dysfunctional neo-colonial entity, where an array of militias squabble over territory and spoils. Its vast landmass has become a safe haven and training ground for ISIL and other Al-Qaeda offshoots. Thousands of Libyans and other African nationals are still detained without trial in what can only be described as concentration camps. Many have been tortured and executed in these same camps, their only crime, being Qaddafi loyalists. Those now in control of Libya hated Qaddafi’s Pan-African objectives. They are Arab supremacists and are persecuting Black Libyans and other African nationals.

Thousands of loyalists and migrants from other African countries languish in prisons.

Africans who once travelled to Libya to work and send back much needed funds to their families are now crossing the Mediterranean. Entire boatloads of people, including women and children are drowning as they make the perilous journey. Our ancestors were once captured and forced on to boats against their will, many perished during that crossing, today, we are clamoring to secure a place on boats that are not even seaworthy to escape the conditions created by our former enslavers. Many are still perishing.

Qaddafi would often lament, “the world shakes, but it doesn’t change”.

Workers from as far afield as the Philippines, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, China, Turkey, Germany, England, Italy, Malaysia and Korea lost their jobs.

The entire refugee crisis across Europe is a result of the destruction of the Jamahiriya.

February 2, 2011: Muammar Al Qaddafi in a desert tent in the Aziziya army barracks in Tripoli.

The push to establish a United States of Africa, which prior to Libya’s demise was a dynamic and energized initiative, is presently a dream deferred. Revolutionary Pan-Africanism has suffered a huge setback. Today’s African leaders, with the exception of a few, are only good for talking Pan-Africanism in the halls of the African Union headquarters. Outside of these confines, they are committed to maintaining the old neo-colonial relationships that keep Africa in bondage.

We Salute You

On this day, all those who resist oppression and tyranny worldwide, salute the great freedom fighter and our Brother-Leader, Muammar Qaddafi and the other revolutionary leaders of Al Fatah. We pay homage to their dedicated and life-long struggle for human emancipation and dignity. We are forever inspired by their steadfast and courageous fight to the end, and by their unwavering faith in, and service to God. We are grateful for their undying love for the African continent and all of humanity. We salute the millions of Libyan men and women who heroically resisted the invasion of their country, and who continue to suffer to this day. We stand in solidarity with the family of Muammar Qaddafi and the families of all the martyrs. We stand in solidarity with the thousands of political prisoners inside Libya and the more than 1.5 million Qaddafi loyalists exiled from their country. We commit our full support to the struggle being waged by the patriotic and nationalist forces to liberate and reunify Libya once again. For the Green revolutionary, death is not the end, but the doorway to a new beginning. Martyrs never die.

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On Returning from Syria: More Convinced than Ever Western Media Narrative Is Bulls**t

In early October, 2017, I had the pleasure of visiting Syria on a mission to get a sense of the toll of the war, the mindset of the people, and the general situation on the ground. The goal was to see the country in person, get a sense of what life is like in Syria today, talk to the Syrian people and hear their side of things; i.e. their opinions on the government and the “rebels/terrorists,” their living conditions, Syria before the war versus Syria now, and whatever else they wanted to share. We wanted to see the areas formerly under control of the terrorists and talk to the residents there. We also wanted to visit the areas firmly under government control and speak to the residents living in these areas as well.

Having covered the Syrian crisis for the entire six years of its duration, I had a pretty good sense of the opinions of the Syrian people and the situation they are facing as a result of numerous contacts inside Syria. However, there is no substitute for examining a situation first hand and talking with Syrians themselves with whom one has no prior personal connection as well as random strangers on the street in order to get an unfiltered response to the many questions we wanted to ask.

After having the chance to visit many of the places I had written about during the course of the crisis, everything I have written has now been confirmed first hand. I am now more convinced than ever that the “information” being spread across mainstream media outlets like CNN, MSNBC, FOX, and the rest are, quite simply, complete and total bullshit. There is no wonder Americans are so tragically ignorant of what is happening in Syria and the rest of the world when the constant barrage of media propaganda they are subjected to does nothing but promote claims and statements that are in direct contradiction to the facts.

The itinerary of the trip involved seeing a number of cities – Damascus, Aleppo, Homs, Tartus – and many smaller towns and villages in between.

Upon arriving in Damascus, the first thing that stands out is not the architecture or the traffic or even the fact that life has almost fully returned to the areas liberated by the Syrian military, but the people themselves. Many Americans, constantly tortured by media propaganda telling them that everyone in every foreign country hates them for freedom, religion, and short shorts, might be surprised to know that many of the people are intelligent enough to separate the American people from the American government even if Americans are not always intelligent enough to extend the same courtesy to them.

Regardless of the propaganda peddled to Western audiences, the Syrian people mark as some of the most welcoming, friendly, human beings in the world. From the first moment of entering the country, we were greeted by Syrian soldiers who, at virtually every checkpoint, welcomed us to Syria and then on to Damascus where the Syrian people expressed their famous hospitality. Everywhere we went for the entirety of the visit, we were greeted “Welcome to Syria” by soldiers, strangers, passersby on the street, business owners, and virtually everyone we came in contact with. The welcomes were clearly genuine. Everyone was obviously pleased and felt strangely honored that foreigners were visiting Syria and many expressed happiness that “tourists” were returning to Syria after six years of war. It was a sign that things are slowly returning to normal.

While Americans may remain under the impression that Syrians are obsessed with religion, wary and hateful towards foreigners (particularly Americans due to all our alleged “freedom”), I can say without qualification that this is not true and that never once did I experience any hostility from any Syrian during my entire visit. In fact, we were shown the complete opposite with myself and others being repeatedly invited to homes for dinner, tea, and coffee following a short conversation.

While one may be quick to dismiss the content of this article as mere ramblings of a tourist, it is nonetheless important. After six years of bombing, funding terrorists, and hysterical propaganda on the screens of virtually every American, Americans know as little about Syria as they did in 2010. The average American views Syria and Syrian culture as something similar to Saudi Arabia where all the women are covered from head to toe with no rights whatsoever, where non-Muslims are persecuted, and where Islamic law dictates that such an unlucky soul who might be born there cannot even access alcohol to drown his sorrows.

The landscape of Syria to the average American is nothing but sand dunes as far as the eye can see – no water and no trees. Indeed, Hollywood and corporate media have done an excellent job at convincing middle America that these “normal” people are sand-dwelling savages from the Stone Age. This is no mistake since it is easier to hate and bomb savages than it is to murder human beings with families, jobs, and dreams of their own. American media has earned its money in this regard.

To dispel a few of these myths that should have been dispelled long ago it might be worth mentioning that the traditional depiction of the Middle East (covered women, savagery, and beheadings) is closer to the reality of America’s ally Saudi Arabia than anything in Syria. The country has deserts for sure but it also has mountains, lush green areas, coastal regions, and lakes. Women are able to drive, vote, hold public office and do virtually everything a man can do in Syria if they desire. Women are not covered. Instead, walking the streets of Damascus or any other major city, you will see plenty of uncovered women wearing tight jeans and tank tops. There are no religious police hunting them down, as the government is secular and enforces secularism in terms of law and policy. Religious freedom applies to Muslims, Jews, and Christians alike.

Bars are plentiful in the cities as are liquor stores and the general ability to be as drunk as one needs to be in order to feel like a Westerner is always present.

Religious fetishism plays harder in the minds of Americans themselves than it does in the life of the average Syrian. Muslim, Christian, Jew, and all the other branches of religion have coexisted peacefully for generations and continue to do so today. A walk on the street of any city will reveal this clear as day. No one in Syria is engaged in a religious civil war. Only in the minds of Westerners subjected to daily propaganda is the Syrian crisis related to religion and only on the teleprompters of CNN and MSNBC is the crisis a civil war.

All throughout Syria, even after six years of intense fighting and some of the most brutal atrocities the world has ever seen having been committed by America’s terrorists, the Syrian people are beginning to rebuild. Even in areas formerly controlled by America’s cave-dwelling proxies, life is returning to Syria. Shops are reopening. Homes are being rebuilt and services are being restored. This is a hallmark of Syrians which has helped see the country through; resilience in the face of unimaginable odds.

A walk in the Souk near the Aleppo citadel which, once teeming with life and shops is now reduced to rubble and pockmarked walls, revealed Syrians walking to their old shops with bags and a shovel to begin the process of digging through the dirt, rocks, and rubble and clear out their shop stalls for the eventual remodeling and reopening. Even in the midst of the constant sounds of shelling and bombing and under the hovering threat of suicide bombs, sleeper cell attacks, and counterattacks by America’s terrorists, restaurant owners and shopkeepers are back to work, carrying on with life in the aftermath and the fringe continuation of such incredible amounts of death.

Syrian Determination

It is almost impossible to put to words the determination that the Syrian people have shown in not only preserving their culture through possibly the darkest period of the country or in rebuilding their homes and businesses but also their defiant will to refuse to submit to the attempts by Western imperialists to destroy their country and their culture.

Syria is a special country and most Syrians are conscious of that. It is not an abstraction to the people who live there. Having dinner in a hotel restaurant in Damascus, we met a Syrian couple who expressed their own knowledge that Syria was a special country on every level and how they were themselves tied to that land in a way in which most people would have no understanding. Truly, the blood of the land runs in their veins.

We spoke to a group of art and theatre students and their teachers who remained in Damascus throughout the war. The girls were in their early twenties, having experienced the entirety of their teenage years in the throes of war. When they should have been learning to drive in the Damascus traffic, going on dates, and generally being teenagers, they were watching bombs drop on their city, seeing their friends and family members murdered, and struggling to get enough to eat day by day. Theirs is a youth wasted by America’s terrorists, teenage years that contain memories of the worst kind of atrocities with no room for teenage angst and resistance to the confines of schooling. Instead, bombs took the place of parties and teenage rebellion.

Despite all this, their outlook was surprisingly positive and incredibly life-affirming.

“For us,” said one of the girls, “life is about living. We are surrounded by death so, for us, living is enough.”

After the conversation, as we were leaving, one member of our group thanked the women for taking the time to invite us in and to speak with us about their lives and the tragedies they each had to endure on such a beautiful day. To that, a woman responded,

“Yes, but all days are beautiful. You only have to be able to recognize the beauty.”

That, in a nutshell, is the Syria I experienced over ten days.

Later on, in discussions with a Syrian man, the question was asked how Syrians seem to be able to get back up on their feet and start living again, sending their children to school, working, rebuilding even as the war continues two miles away. The answer was simple: “This is Syria.” When it was suggested that the Western powers do not understand the Syrian connection to their country and their unmatched resolve to continue living and rebuilding what was lost, he agreed. “That’s right,” he said. “They don’t understand us. And that is why they lost.”

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Turkey to Establish Eight Military Bases in Syria’s Idlib Province

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The Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) are going to establish 8 military bases in Syria’s Idlib province, according to the conservative Turkish daily newspaper Yeni Şafak.

“The Taftanaz Air Base and the Abu al-Duhur Military Airbase [in Syria’s Idlib province] are also two separate points that the TAF uses,” the daily writes.

According to the daily, the Syrian Arab Army’s largest garrison in the vicinity of the Deif region is now controlled by Turkish forces.

The TAF entered Syria’s Idlib province under a pretext of implemeting the de-escalation zones agreement reached by Tehran, Ankara and Moscow in the Astana talks on the Syrian conflict.

The Turkish military announced that it established the first observation post on October 13. Considering that no clashes between the TAF and Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda) have been reported since then, it becomes clear that Turkey has some kind of deal with the terrorist group which is the most influential “opposition faction” in the province.

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George W. Bush Receives a Character Award at West Point: Duty, Honor, Atrocity

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In George W. Bush’s home state of Texas, if you are an ordinary citizen found guilty of capital murder, the mandatory sentence is either life in prison or the death penalty. If, however, you are a former president of the United States responsible for initiating two illegal wars of aggression, which killed 7,000 U.S. servicemen and at least 210,000 civilians, displaced more than 10 million people from their homes, condoned torture, initiated a global drone assassination campaign, and imprisoned people for years without substantive evidence or trial in Guantanamo Bay, the punishment evidently is to be given the Thayer Award at West Point.

On October 19th, George W. Bush traveled to the United States Military Academy, my alma mater, to receive the Sylvanus Thayer Award at a ceremony hosted by that school’s current superintendent and presented on behalf of the West Point Association of Graduates. The honor is “given to a citizen… whose outstanding character, accomplishments, and stature in the civilian community draw wholesome comparison to the qualities for which West Point strives.”

The Thayer may be one of the most important awards that hardly anyone has ever heard of. In a sense, it’s a litmus test when it comes to West Point’s moral orientation and institutional values. Academy graduates around the world — in dusty GP medium tents as well as Pentagon offices — all sit at the proverbial table where momentous, sometimes perverse decisions are regularly made. To invade or not to invade, to bomb or not to bomb, to torture, or not to torture — those are the questions. As the Trump era has reminded us, the U.S. military’s ability to obliterate all organized human life on Earth is beyond question. So it stands to reason that the types of beliefs pounded into cadets at West Point — the ones that will serve to guide them throughout their military careers — do matter.  To the classes of cadets now there, this award will offer a message: that George W. Bush and the things he did in his presidency are worth emulating. I could not disagree more.

The United States Military Academy is, or at least should be, a steward of American military values and yet the presentation of the Thayer Award to our former president represents an unprincipled lapse in judgment. In what it condones, it has committed a brazen violation of West Point’s honor code, which instructs that “a cadet will not lie, cheat, steal, or tolerate those who do.”

George W. Bush deceived the nation, cheated noncombatants of both their bodily autonomy and moral significance, and waged unjustifiable, unnecessary wars, which misallocated trillions of dollars that would have been better used to ensure the prosperity and well-being of Americans.  And he once described his messianic mission as “this crusade.” Is the world’s premier military academy not then honoring the dishonorable?

As I recall from my time wearing cadet grey, West Point regularly indulged in talk about doing “the harder right rather than the easier wrong,” about exhibiting “moral courage,” and about “Army Values.” Our ethical compass was given to us, standard issue, early on, often in the form of quaint military parables.

These were meant to set the ethical standards for behavior in war. Despite serious transgressions of those values by West Point graduates in these years, I still believe that the majority of West Pointers, even in the most stressful situations, are challenged by a nagging little voice asking what West Point would do.  In a sense, we have all been hard-wired to follow the ethical protocols we learned at the academy. As far as I’m concerned, however, this award shifts the goal posts. It establishes a new moral paradigm for what should be considered acceptable behavior in war and foreign policy.

As someone who also fought in one of those wars, let me just say that presenting Bush’s legacy as a template for cadets to follow is — not to mince words — a moral obscenity. Once the collective “we” — that is, West Point and its alumni — acknowledge that Bush’s wars and the state-sanctioned torture that went with them are not just acceptable, but laudable, we have lost any plausible claim to the moral high ground, the ground I once believed West Point was founded on.

Now that the Thayer Award has been given to former President Bush and we, the alumni, have even officially sponsored the act (not me, of course), it seems that the values we were taught don’t stand for anything at all.

A Cadet Will Not Lie

By idolizing Bush, a man whose major legacy is defined by acts of state terrorism (rebranded “counterterrorism”), West Point and its alumni have canonized by association his now-16-year-old war on terror. West Pointers have long been placed in a precarious position in relation to that war, simultaneously helping to perpetrate it and suffering from it. Too much energy has been devoted to pursuing it and too much lost for it not to have some grand meaning. By retrofitting the past, West Point and its graduates are now attempting to lessen the sting of, the reality of, those last 16 years.  In the process, they are continuing to delude its graduates, who are still being deployed to commit political violence in, at best, a morally dubious set of wars.

The very act of misleading a generation of salt-of-the-earth people — as most West Pointers I’ve encountered are — making them willing participants (and I include myself in this) in Bush’s supreme international crime should qualify as a tragedy. Convincing cadets of Bush’s widely discredited, false narrative is also a lie by West Point’s own doctrinal definition of the word.  The academy’s honor code defines lying as “an untruth or… the telling of a partial truth and the vague or ambiguous use of information or language with the intent to deceive or mislead…”

West Point generally doesn’t teach those facts that would cause cadets to feel embarrassed by or skeptical of the state. During wars of aggression like Bush’s, cadets will never be permitted to come to the conclusion that the political violence they will be sent off to commit after graduation is illegal or morally unsavory. Acknowledging all the emotive connotations that come with the word, one could still credibly call this practice “brainwashing.”  

At West Point, it’s still possible to believe that we are fighting in the interests of the Afghan people when, for 16 years, a coalition of the most powerful armies on Earth led by the United States — supposedly with the support of most Afghans — hasn’t been able to get rid of a few thousand ragtag Taliban fighters. Why is it that, at the academy, the contradictoriness of such claims never leads to an inconvenient but possibly more reasonable explanation: that we’ve failed because enough of them oppose us, that we’re part of the problem, not the solution? In his final address to the Afghan parliament in 2014, President Hamid Karzai suggested as much, claiming that the last 12 years of war had been “imposed” on Afghanistan.

The extreme psychosocial dynamics of West Point make it a masterful teacher of such Orwellian “doublethink.” In the process, people like Bush — or former National Security Adviser and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger (another Thayer Award recipient) — are deified. They must exist as role models, not villains or war criminals. Being sure that the enemy is the enemy is an imperative of combat, so it’s essential that no one thinks about this topic too much or too deeply.

Inconvenient facts are deliberately omitted as threats to both recruitment and retention. Blind devotion is considered a virtue. Cadets are trained to proverbially place all their self-esteem eggs in the military basket. Morality is partitioned. Emphasis is put on individual actions in combat, not the morality of the war being fought. We were typically taught that, a few bad apples aside, throughout its history the United States has always been “the good guy,” never the perpetrator.

In direct combat in Afghanistan, my soldiers and I faced death, disability, and despair. But perhaps the deepest wound was coming to realize that such tragedies were in service to, at best, a quixotic cause and, at worst, political expediency.

Due to an overriding obligation to the state and a purely subordinate obligation to the truth, West Point is structurally incapable of adhering to its own honor code in practice. Dishonesty, however, has a subtler aspect to it. It leeches away whatever integrity the academy does possess beneath its granite foundation. In that sense, the latest Thayer Award is an attempt to revise history by denying the illegality of Bush’s wars and absolving him of any accountability for them.

Lest we forget: none of the 19 hijackers on 9/11 were Iraqi or Afghan citizens, nor did Iraq’s autocratic ruler have nuclear or other weapons of mass destruction, nor was he in any way involved with al-Qaeda. Instead, as revealed in the leaked Downing Street Memo, President Bush “wanted to remove Saddam, through military action… [T]he intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.” Meanwhile, his top officials continued to publicly push the lie that Iraq “possesses and produces chemical weapons,” as well as supposed evidence (fraudulent, as they knew at the time) indicating that Iraq was “reconstituting its nuclear weapons program.” This claim would be explicitly contradicted by the U.S. intelligence community’s prewar National Intelligence Estimate, which stated that Saddam Hussein’s regime did not have “sufficient material” to manufacture any nuclear weapons and that “the information we have on Iraqi nuclear personnel does not appear consistent with a coherent effort to reconstitute a nuclear weapons program.” The very justification for Bush’s invasion and occupation of that country, in other words, was built upon lies. This year’s Thayer Award is simply a concrete manifestation of those lies.

To former President Bush, I’d like to say: there is no betrayal more intimate than being sent to kill or die unnecessarily by your own countrymen.

… Cheat

Whatever one thinks about soldiers invading another country or the people who defend that country from those foreign aggressors, this year’s Thayer Award cheats the far more numerous victims of those wars, Iraqi and Afghan civilians, of their status as human beings. To give this award to Bush is to say that their lives didn’t matter, that they got what they deserved. Or as soldiers I came across liked to say, often with high-wattage smiles, “We freed the shit out of them.”

Osama bin Laden was connected to the deaths of thousands of innocent civilians, George W. Bush to hundreds of thousands (at least 70 September 11ths), not to speak of the unrecorded torments of millions. One can only argue that Bush’s invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan were less of a crime if Iraqi and Afghan noncombatants are counted as fractional human beings — if, that is, there is one set of rules for America and another, heavily enforced by the U.S. military, for the rest of the world. By any elementary definition, this is “cheating.”

It should be self-evident that the use of torture is a dishonorable thing. What then could be a worse crime than for a leader of a democracy to organize the state-sanctioned torture of both the innocent and the guilty on a large scale?  The very act of torture cheats people of their bodily autonomy. When West Point overlooks the hypocrisy of giving an award for “outstanding character” to a former leader who put his stamp of approval on torture — for which the U.S. once punished Japanese war criminals with hanging or lengthy prison sentences — it makes a mockery of those values. The International Criminal Court reported that, under the Bush-era torture program, members of the U.S. Army and the CIA may be guilty of war crimes. Former National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism Richard Clarke went further, saying, “It’s clear that some of the things [the Bush administration] did were war crimes.”

Think of this Thayer Award, then, as an undeserved rehabilitation of George W. Bush’s reputation that’s meant to cheat history. Put another way, West Point supports giving the former president this award not because he earned it, but because they wish he had.

… Steal

 It’s hard to find a time in American history when more was spent to accomplish less. Even on the most practical level, the spread of terror groups and insurgencies of various kinds continues to outpace the rate at which the U.S. can kill the latest “bad guys.” The entire war is, in the long run and to the tune of trillions of taxpayer dollars, unsustainable. It’s only a question of how much damage we want to do to our own soldiers, how much public funding we intend to divert, while destroying the social fabric of other countries, before we pack it up and leave.

At the start of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, President George W. Bush ordered the U.S. military to conduct a devastating aerial assault on Baghdad, known as “shock and awe.” (Source: Consortiumnews)

What did Bush, or any of us, get from stealing sovereignty from the people of Iraq and Afghanistan? Global terrorism deaths increased 4,000% from 2002 to 2014 (from 725 to 32,727). The Taliban now hold more ground in Afghanistan than at any point since the invasion of 2001.  TSA airport screenings fail to detect mock weapons in 95% of tests. The U.S.-friendly client regime established in Iraq looted billions of dollars in American aid. And that’s just to start down a long, long list.  As journalist Patrick Cockburn wrote“The invasion and occupation of Iraq by the U.S…. destroyed Iraq as a united country and nobody has been able to put it back together again. It opened up a period when Iraq’s three great communities — Shia, Sunni and Kurds — are in a permanent state of confrontation, a situation that has had a deeply destabilising impact on all of Iraq’s neighbours.”

Bush leveraged the future prosperity of America into trillions of dollars of debt, an intergenerational heist meant to give him the appearance of being “tough on terror.” That’s a reality that should be unappealing to members of both political parties.  For fiscally conservative Republicans, it bloats the budget; for Democrats, it diverts precious funding that might otherwise have gone into crucial social programs. In short, the honored former president stole from American citizens a chance to deal adequately with climate change, infrastructure needs, education, and healthcare.

And it’s difficult to discuss stealing without recalling Bush’s illegal mass surveillance program. It’s hard to imagine how spying on one’s own citizens without a warrant could be emblematic of what the Thayer Award stands for.

… Or Tolerate Those Who Do

When cadets, soldiers, and other servicemen swear an oath, they trust that the president will be guided by sound principles. By sending us to fight his bogus war on terror, George W. Bush betrayed that commitment. In giving the Thayer Award to him, West Point and its graduates not only put their stamp of approval on a president who broke with their stated values, they glorified and cleansed him. This award, in Dubya’s hands, is distinctly stolen valor.

There are many Americans who exemplify the very best of what our country — and West Point — could be. As graduates of the academy, none of us should have difficulty finding deserving Thayer Award recipients. George W. Bush’s terror wars, however, were not just a tragedy but also a crime. It’s now a secondary tragedy that West Point lacked both the honor and conviction to say so.

The former president deserves a cold metal bench in a stockade awaiting trial, not an award and a warm round of applause from the academy. No coffee table books featuring his paintings — a perverse form of macabre exhibitionism — will atone for his actions. If West Point and its Association of Graduates want to maintain any credible pretense of adhering to the values they claim to espouse, they should revoke the most recent Thayer Award immediately.

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Angels, Dolphins and the World Festival of Youth and Students: Condemning Lies that Violate

NOVANEWS

The fisherman who found five-year old Elián Gonzalez in 1998 thought he’d been saved by angels and dolphins. His mother put him on an inner tube before she and everyone else on the boat drowned. They were trying to get to Florida. It was US Thanksgiving. The Cuban boy became a household name.

This week, at 24, Elián González, speaking in Russia, condemned US imperialism. 1 He talked about the lies he was told in Florida. He called them a violation. In early 1999, the media showed a small boy in a huge toy car, surrounded by colorful children’s paraphernalia, saying he didn’t want to return to Cuba.

His father, who hadn’t known the boy’s mother’s plans, saw his son on TV and cried. In Havana, almost daily, people marched. Night after night, children took the microphone before large crowds. They asked how the US could be “saving” Elián when 11 million of its own children had no health care, and when children were killing other children with guns in US schools.

I remember an eight or nine year old, speaking for ten minutes, without notes, under the lights, citing statistics, wondering aloud about the stupidity of believing a six-year old lives better with sophisticated toys and Disney World than with his father who loves him, just because his dad happens to be poor.

Another child commented that Elián, who wanted to be a pilot, would, in the US, be able to travel the world, bombing people’s dreams.

A student from Honduras, studying at the newly inaugurated Latin American Medical School, described children in his own country carrying huge loads of wood, or working in the mines, burdened by illiteracy. He asked why the US wanted to destroy a beacon of hope, Cuba, where he’d received a full scholarship and a chance to help his people.

The North American media, of course, said the kids were “forced”. But children can’t fake the kind of enthusiasm and confidence I saw expressed at rallies across the island. Maybe they don’t fully understand respect, dignity, and solidarity. I don’t either. But they knew these values matter.

One teenager said loudly in front of the US Interest Section, now the US Embassy,

“I wasn’t sent, you know. Did you hear that?” She went on to explain to the dark, silent building: “You don’t know us. And in particular, you don’t know that nothing is more important in Cuba than one child”.

In fact, most of the US population (82%) thought Elián should be returned to his father in Cuba, and he eventually was. Fidel Castro used to say that the US people, for the most part, want to do the right thing. The problem, he’d add, is that their government lies to them. 

It is no small challenge. Those lies, at least some, are an identity. They become expectations, rooted in social practises. They are presupposed, day by day.

Some are reliable. I expect fire to be hot and I withdraw my hand, without thinking. I have that expectation because of collaborative social practises. Some expectations are based in true beliefs. We rely upon them necessarily. But some are arbitrary, based in social conventions.

It is why José Martí, nineteenth century independence leader, thought a false idea of knowledge was a bigger hurdle for Latin American independence than the powerful northern neighbour. 2 Expectations determine how we understand the world, even what we see. This is well-known in philosophy. It means, if the insight is pursued, as it should be, that imperialism must be challenged in order to think – properly.

Some are now asking why the levels of anxiety in US teenagers are so high. One answer is dehumanizing social practises, promoting false expectations about life. 3

Elián was right to say this week that the lies he was told in Florida, as a small child, were a violation. A violation is an action that breaks something. When lies are about human possibilities, about who we are as human beings, and they become expectations, they break humanness, and the imagination that might feed its possibility.

The same year Elián was held in Florida, the governor of Illinois visited Cuba, the first such visit in forty years. After five days, back in Illinois, he said he was impressed that Cuba’s infant mortality rate was only 7.1 deaths per thousand live births, that there is one doctor for each 170 persons, that all children, even in remote mountain areas,  receive thirteen vaccinations.

The governor was accused of having been brain-washed. He was impressed that a poor country takes care of its most vulnerable citizens. The statistics, though, are well-known. What was startling was the importance the governor gave them.

It raises a question, or might have. Cuba has few natural resources. But it has people. And for hundreds of years, starting long before the Cuban Revolution, it has cultivated ideas explaining why this matters.

Those ideas aren’t known in the North, and they won’t be, easily, for reasons Martí identified: a false view of knowledge. They won’t be known because of expectations that violate. They are part of a national identity, expectations that must be challenged in order to think, properly.

The kids I heard at those rallies raised a question: about imperialism and the truths it denies. But it wasn’t what they said. It was how they were. And it wasn’t just them. It was the social practises that made what they said – about respect, dignity and solidarity – credible. They made it matter.

Some of those kids are still speaking out – Elián, for one – about lies that violate.

Ana Belén Montes spoke out, with her actions.4 She is in jail, in the US, having hurt no one, although she damaged violating lies. Please sign petition here.

Susan Babbitt is author of Humanism and Embodiment (Bloomsbury 2014) and José Martí, Ernesto “Che” Guevara and Global Development Ethics (Palgrave MacMillan 2014).

Notes

1. http://www.cubadebate.cu/noticias/2017/10/19/delegado-no-173-elian-dejo-huellas-de-unidad-en-tribunal-antimperialista/#.WexaYltSzIUhttp://www.cubadebate.cu/noticias/2017/10/18/sochi-estados-unidos-al-banquillo-de-los-acusados-video/#.WexccltSzIU

2. In “Our America”. José Martí: Selected Works, tr. Esther Allen (Penquin Books, 2002) 290

3. E.g. https://www.globalresearch.ca/human-anxiety-in-late-stage-capitalism/5614090

4. http://www.prolibertad.org/ana-belen-montes. For more information, write to the cnc@canadiannetworkoncuba.caor cincoheroes@listas.cujae.edu.cu

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China’s Belt and Road: Geopolitical Analysis of Regional Impediments

NOVANEWS

China’s Belt and Road: Geopolitical Analysis of Regional Impediments. Afghanistan, Pakistan, Myanmar, India, Bangladesh

China’s colossal industrial overcapacity needs global markets and it drives the country to explore wide-scale and costly corridors for overland access to the east and west.

China’s vision to establish a brand new international currency in lieu of the US dollar under powerful bloc of BRICS nation;

China and Russia’s shared efforts to shatter petrodollars and of the highest concern, China’s mega “Belt and Road” project is cautioning the US about its future economic hegemony in the region. Remember, the entire global violence of any sort, anywhere has its ultimate roots in economic interests.

China is laboring on its Central Asia economic corridor without a bump, though this robust economy’s CPEC [China-Pakistan Economic Corridor] as well as Bangladesh-China-India- Myanmar road network could meet a number of obstructions. China has even fixed eyes on the US-occupied Afghanistan as a potential ground for another “Belt and Road” whose foreign policy is entirely at the discretion of the US.

Pakistan went through never-before-seen warnings of Washington under Trump, which were primarily instigated as a result of Pakistan-China’s joint economic scheme. The week following Trump’s critical comments against Pakistan in the UN Summit in September, the Secretary of Defense James Mattisflew to India in an apparently provocative official trip and spoke of India’s role in Afghanistan.

Earlier this month, Washington couldn’t hold back and unearthed that CPEC is passing through the disputed region [Kashmir]. The US Defense Secretary James Mattis told the Senate Armed Services Committee that the Chinese One Belt One Road project is controversial. India objects to CPEC because it may automatically bestow Kashmir to Pakistan once the project comes into practice. At this point, the US and India’s strategic interests coincide.

The US’s posture towards the project has turned upside down. In July last year, the US ambassador to Pakistan David Hale had welcomed the deal and stated:

“The United States welcomes the project and is supportive of any effort that brings about economic growth and development in Pakistan”.

China is working to craft an additional economic corridor that commences from China’s southwestern provinces and runs across Myanmar, Bangladesh and ends up in India’s Kolkata. Recently, China released a white paper vision for Maritime Cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative to join CPEC with Bangladesh-India-Myanmar corridor. China has come to the sense that India’s disapproval may keep the project from progress, so the latest scheme seems to have surfaced to appease India.

It is believed that CPEC is a flagship project of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, while China calls the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar corridor also important. India is apathetic to the latest Belt and Road project. Beijing recently said it was willing to wait for New Delhi to join the project. India’s green light to the latest Belt and Road project may suggest that it has no issue with CPEC passing through disputed Kashmir claimed by India.

Even though India skipped China’s Belt and Road forum in May and made its opposition to CPEC clear, Beijing has continued building the controversial project, saying it has nothing to do with a bilateral dispute between India and Pakistan.

To the south of China’s Central Asia Belt and Road corridor, China seeks to build one through its narrow border with Afghanistan’s Wakhan corridor to connect to new markets along the route. Besides trading purposes, China’s Afghanistan Belt and Road project is intended to establish security in the region as well as undercut the US’s military agenda. On the other hand, Afghanistan’s conflict is on the upheaval with no imminent end which is barring China from moving ahead. To this end, China’s Afghanistan scheme would be blocked as long as US forces are stationed in Afghanistan.

It is not over; China’s Myanmar-Bangladesh-India economic corridor with limited progress in place is facing problems ed in Myanmar’s Rakhine state.

Has the Rohingya’s crisis been engineered to challenge China’s Belt and Road.

The fury that broke out last August in this state imperils China’s massive economic interests. As China expands its geo-political influence and opens up economic corridors to its southern neighbors, it needs peace and stability in Rakhine state. China has business interests accounting for billions of dollars in investment in Rakhine where violence hinders the implementation of ongoing Belt and Road project.

China’s impulse to back Myanmar is said to include cementing its foothold in Myanmar and proactive efforts to cut short the West’s intervention in the countries south of China’s borders. Rakhine’s violence is no less than Kashmir’s dispute to interrupt China’s Belt and Road constructions. On August 25, the insurgent group called ARSA conducted a spate of attacks on a number of Myanmar military’s outposts and killed enough to prompt military into a sweeping and brutal reaction.

Hired media outlets gave vent to Rakhine’s violence and scattering of people to draw global attention into Myanmar’s “crisis”. Yet, some of the world’s major countries including China, Russia and India have refused to specifically condemn the ongoing violence in Rohingya.

In a video message released recently, the front man, Ata Ullah, who is believed to have been born to a Rohingya family in the Pakistani city of Karachi and to have lived in Saudi Arabia, strongly rebuked Myanmar’s treatment of Rohingya. Myanmar’s authorities have asserted that ARSA has links to militants trained by Pakistani Taliban and declared it a “terrorist organization”.

To our surprise, analysts even opined that the climax of Rakhine’s violence is a favorable opportunity for infiltration by networks with a global terrorist agenda such as the Islamic State group (ISIS).

Is the UN acting and responding on behalf of Western interests against China? In February, the UN accused the Myanmar’s military of mass killings and rape of Muslims in Rakhine’s villages. The UN held a closed-door briefing on the crisis. Myanmar barred a UN fact-finding mission from visiting Rakhine state.

Last September, reports appeared that Myanmar was negotiating with Russia and China to protect Yangon from any UN Security Council actions. Noteworthy is that China refrained to step into Myanmar’s crisis, yet the unfolding chaos and the UN’s purposeful attack on Myanmar’s government compelled Beijing it to protect Mandalay. News emerged that China opposed UN involvement in Myanmar’s crisis.

China continues to provide diplomatic protection to Myanmar as some Western nations press the government and military on the Rakhine issue.  In March, China along with Russia blocked a brief UNSC statement when the 15-member body met to discuss the situation in Rakhine. It suggests that certain circles within the UN are working against the interests of China and Russia.

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Cuban Workers Condemn US Blockade

NOVANEWS

The Cuban Workers’ Confederation (CTC) and the national trade unions released a statement strongly condemning over 50 yearlong US economic, financial and commercial US blockade on Cuba.

The document published by the weekly Trabajadores indicates that the hostile policy of the United States government continues to be a massive, flagrant and systematic violation of the human rights of the Cuban people.
It called the blockade a genocidal action, as expressed in the report to be presented by Cuba to the United Nations General Assembly on November 1.

The CTC joins the rest of the organizations of Cuban civil society, which demand the cessation of the measure imposed more than half a century ago, in the useless attempt to subdue the Revolution.

According to the statement, the blockade constitutes the biggest obstacle to the economic and social development of the island and must be seen as part of the historical interventionist policy of the empire towards Cuba.

It points out that its implementation has become a process of war to stifle the country and constitutes a tool to try to show that Cuba is part of the territory of the United States.

Cuban workers, it reads, have suffered like all our people from the effects of the longest economic, commercial and financial siege in history.

Noting that the economic damages of the blockade add up billions of dollars, it points out that it has intensified with the arrival of Donald Trump to power and the implementation of the Presidential Memorandum of National Security.

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France’s Minister of Defense: French Citizens Who Joined Jihad Should Die on the Battlefield

NOVANEWS

Breaking: France’s Minister of Defense: French Citizens Who Joined Jihad Should Die on the Battlefield – “We Don’t Want Them Back”

French Minister of Defense, Florence Parly, told Europe 1 radio last week, “If the [French] jihadis perish in this fight, I would say that’s for the best.”

Featured image: Florence Parly (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

AP reported in The New York Post of 21 October 2017, that during ISIS heydays, it is estimated that about 30,000 citizens from around the world traveled to the Middle East, mostly Syria and Iraq, to join ISIS / Daesh as jihadi fighters. This included an estimated 6,000 Europeans, mostly from France, Germany and Britain, many with immigrant backgrounds. A study found that less than 10% converted to Islam.

After ISIS’ defeat in Syria’s northern city of Raqqa, the former ISIS stronghold and artificial capital of the Islamic State’s Caliphate, about a third of the European jihadists have returned home, where many are awaiting trial in prison. Others are free and under surveillance. They are easy fodder for western secret services to blow themselves up, as jihadists, leaving always an ID behind; False Flag acts of ‘terror’, immediately claimed by ISIS, through the Islamic State’s news agency, Amaq. No surprise, though, in case they were contracted by CIA, Mossad, MI6 et al, to do so.

Other European jihadi fighters are still left on defeated battlefields, hiding in Raqqa’s ruins, some captured – and facing immediate death by execution. They are not wanted back in their European home countries. These countries had then and have now no time, nor interest to care for these people, their desperate, rudderless citizens. “Let them die on the battlefield” we don’t want them back.

While most European Governments didn’t dare express it in such blunt words, the French Minister of Defense, Florence Parly, told Europe 1 radio last week,

“If the [French] jihadis perish in this fight, I would say that’s for the best.”

US orders were similar,

“Our mission is to make sure that any foreign fighter who is here, who joined ISIS from a foreign country and came into Syria, they will die here in Syria,” said Brett McGurk, the top U.S. envoy for the anti-IS coalition, in an interview with Dubai-based Al-Aan television. “So, if they’re in Raqqa, they’re going to die in Raqqa,” he said.

This is as much as saying, no prisoners are taken, they are all to be neutralized, a euphemism for murdered.

Imagine, this comes from the very countries that have created, trained and funded ISIS. Then they have nurtured ISIS for their purposes of spreading destruction, chaos, and assassination throughout the Middle east with focus on Syria and Iraq. These are the NATO governments who have left their young rudderless people without hope, seeking a ‘raison d’être’, a purpose in life.

Desperate without hope and guidance, many with zero income, zero chance in our western ultra-competitive merciless society – that’s what they were then, when they joined the Jihad and that’s what they are today – at the point of being slaughtered with the permission of their governments who created the army they volunteered to fight for – out of despair.

These European governments were and are in the first place interested in NATO, war and in pleasing their masters in Washington, but not in providing jobs or social safety nets for the young, the jobless, the desperate. These governments must destroy the world as a priority for their own elite’s greed and satisfaction, for the war industry’s profit. They do not care for the generations of young people either killed or without a future in Syria, Iraq, or even at home – and now they are ordering, yes, literally ordering to kill their own citizens, who left because their warmongering neoliberal – neofascist – economies had no space and interest in helping their hapless and hopeless citizens finding a purpose in life, a decent job, a roof over their head – and most important, inclusion in society. Feeling as outcasts, they felt inspired by the western initiated jihad propaganda – and left to fight a purposeless horrible western financed war.

This is the same Europe – directed by a nucleus of unelected white-collar criminals in Brussels, called the European Commission, the same Europeans, rather than caring for the well-being on their home-turf, they are colluding with their transatlantic financial mafia pals of Wall Street, FED, the Bretton Woods Institutions, planning on how to rob more poor countries of their natural resources, by indebting and blackmailing them into austerity and privatization of their public services. The same NATO-chained Europe with hundreds of years of history of brutal colonialism throughout the world.

Madame Parly’s statement must have been approved by president Macron, who stayed silent at the condemnation to death of French jihadi citizens by his Minister of Defense. Macron has just managed to put a ‘permanent state of emergency’ – basically Martial Law – into the French Constitution, entering into effect on 1 November 2017 – the first European country to do so.

The State of Emergency was in effect in France – permanent police and military surveillance throughout France – since the Charlie Hebdo murders in January 2015. Despite this law, 43 terror attacks causing hundreds of deaths, occurred in France to this day. – No doubt other EU countries will follow Macron’s lead. There is clearly no space for French ex-jihadists in France.

An anonymous Kurdish YPG official said, foreigners who fight until the end will be ‘eliminated’. In other words, we don’t take prisoners – following the dictate of the French Minister of Defense, and the US envoy, McGurk. The YPG is a powerful Kurdish secessionist militia, financed and supported by Washington.

The anonymous source also said that for the few prisoners they had captured, they, the Kurds, tried to reach out to the prisoners’ home countries, “We try to hand them in. But many would not want to take their (detainees).” He added these were sensitive issues not to be discussed with reporters.

“The general sentiment in northern Europe is we don’t want these people back, but I don’t think anyone has thought about the alternatives,” said Pieter Van Ostaeyen, an expert on the Belgian jihadists.

He insinuates the complications on prosecuting the returnees, and how to track them if and when they leave custody.

“You can see why almost the preferred resolution is that they don’t return,” said Bruce Hoffman, head of Georgetown University’s security studies program and author of “Inside Terrorism.” – What worries me is I think it’s wishful thinking that they’re all going to be killed off,” he added.

Wishful thinking or not, French Minister Parly said it’s the best outcome.

“We cannot do anything to prevent their return besides neutralize the maximum number of jihadis in this combat,” she said.

Shamefully, all sense of Human Rights, of the Geneva Convention of War Prisoners, has been erased form the witless, immoral brains of western politicians.

*

No country openly admits refusing to let citizens who joined the Islamic State return, including women and children. Germany and Russia are exceptions to this sinister rule. German diplomats state that all German citizens “are entitled to consular assistance”.

Russia actually goes out of her way to repatriate their citizens who want to come home, with a special effort on orphaned children and wives of killed Russian jihadists. It is again just wonderful to see the difference in human approach between the east and the decadent west. In his final words at the closing ceremony of the Sochi Youth Festival, Mr. Putin warned that worse than nuclear bombs are the loss of ethics and moral values in society.

Posted in FranceComments Off on France’s Minister of Defense: French Citizens Who Joined Jihad Should Die on the Battlefield

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