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France , Qatar sign deals worth around 12 billion euros: Macron

Image result for Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani CARTOON

French President Emmanuel Macron and Qatar’s ruling emir have signed contacts worth around 12 billion euros ($14.15 billion) during the French president’s visit to Doha.

“In total, it amounts to nearly 12 billion euros which was signed today and which underlines the closeness of our relations,” Macron said at a press conference with Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani on Thursday.

Macron and Sheikh Tamim agreed on a deal for Qatar to purchase at least a dozen French-made Dassault Rafale fighter jets with the option of buying 36 more. The deal also includes purchase of 490 VBCI armored vehicles from French firm Nexter.

Qatar would additionally buy 50 Airbus twin-engine A321s with the option of buying 30 more.

The small Persian Gulf country also signed a transportation deal with France’s national rail authority to manage and maintain Doha’s planned metro, as well as a light rail system north of Doha.

The French president is traveling with Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, who in 2015 as defense minister helped negotiate a deal with Qatar buy dozens of Rafale fighter jets.

Macron’s one-day trip comes as Doha faces a continued boycott by some of its Saudi-led Arab neighbors.

In the rare press conference, Qatar’s ruling emir expressed his regret for the boycott and said it was especially disheartening that the crisis erupted in June.

Qatar has been locked in a political standoff with Saudi Arabia and three other Arab countries for the past months. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut relations with Qatar in early June

Earlier this week, a Persian Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) meeting in Kuwait failed to bring the standoff any closer to a resolution.

There has been almost no sign that Qatari authorities would bow to the demands of Saudi Arabia and its allies to restore diplomatic ties.

Among the conditions put forward for a full normalization of ties is the need for Qatar to downgrade its relations with Iran and expel foreign troops, including those from Turkey, from military bases in the country.

Macron visits US, French troops in Qatar

During his visit to Qatar, Macron traveled to the vast al-Udeid air base, which is home to some 10,000 American troops and the forward headquarters of the US military’s Central Command.

France also has a contingent of several hundred troops in Qatar as part of the 1,200 French forces deployed to the region.

The troops are a part of the US-led coalition, which is purportedly fighting the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere.

Speaking to the soldiers, he said the next few months of battle would determine the outcome of the war against Daesh in Iraq in Syria.

“This military win does not signify the end of the operations and the end of our battle because first we need to stabilize and win peace in Iraq and Syria,” he said.

Macron also stressed in his remarks that France wanted to avoid the partitioning of Syria and “avoid the domination of certain international elements whose interests contradict peace.”

The US-led coalition has been conducting airstrikes against what are said to be Daesh targets inside Syria since September 2014 without any authorization from the Damascus government or a UN mandate.

The airstrikes, however, have on many occasions resulted in civilian casualties and failed to fulfill their declared aim of countering terrorism.

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


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.

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Emmanuel Macron Put France Back into EU Driver’s Seat


A leader has been born. For a very long time Europe has lacked leadership and vision, and for even longer France was the passive part of the Franco-German motor of European integration. But this has changed on 26 September, when the young president of France, Emmanuel Macron, turned a new page and sat boldly in the driver’s seat of Europe – a seat that was considered to be reserved for German Chancellor Angela Merkel, but she never managed to become a great leader and visionary. The only thing she has been skilfully doing during her three terms in power was to drive safely but without clear direction and a final destination. To her, the EU is a house of cards, which should be approached very carefully and cautiously.

After the painful writing of the Lisbon Treaty, the EU fell into weightlessness and apathy. The crises that were overwhelming it one after the other hardly managed to move it a few steps forward, but without great ambition out of fear that this could feed the Eurosceptics. In the past decade, the EU has been developing along the line of least resistance, doing only what was most necessary and avoiding to ruin the house of cards. All more ambitious ideas were left for better times. There was always to wait for something – these or those elections, this or that referendum, this or that crisis. Emmanuel Macron’s European speech (the entire speech in French hereand a synopsis in English here) of 26 September is precisely what Europe was lacking for a very long time.

The French president’s speech was very passionate and revealed his sincere conviction. It comes precisely 13 days after the annual state of the Union address of European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker (Luxembourg, EPP) – one of the few European visionaries on the list of disappearing species in the company of Guy Verhofstadt and Andrew Duff. The speech took place a few days after the nondescript and boring Florence speech of UK Prime Minister Theresa May, which revealed time and again the painful deficit of solutions and vision of the British political elite. Macron’s speech echoed two days after the parliamentary elections in Germany, the outcome of which fuelled fears that Germany could pull the handbrake of Europe.

Fellow journalists were joking a day before the long-awaited speech of the French head of state that he probably tore apart the industriously drafted speech after he saw the first preliminary results from the voting on Sunday, which showed that nationalists will enter the Bundestag for the first time in post-war Germany and with the size of a third political force at that. The bigger problem, however, is that the Free Democrats also had a good performance and they are openly Eurosceptic party which is against almost all ideas for the future of the euro area outlined in Juncker’s address and in Mr Macron’s speech. And the Free Democrats are mentioned as a potential coalition partner of Mrs Merkel’s conservatives.

There’s talk that Berlin asked Emmanuel Macron to be cautious in his vision and it is very likely that he changed the initial draft of his speech because the part that was about the eurozone was quite vague and sticked to the well known ideas. This, however, did not diminish tangibly the huge ambition of the French president’s vision for the future of Europe. A bold, ambitious, idealistic and very French speech which clearly shows that as early as of next year Europe is about to leap forward. The smell of a new treaty is now in the air, the ambition of which could surpass even that of the Maastricht Treaty, which the EU made a huge leap forward in its integration with.

What does Macron want?

The shortest answer is to shake the EU down to its foundations. The longer is that his vision spreads from the building of a European identity, the creation of European sovereignty, a European army, reform of the institutions, to the breaking off of the eurozone from the slower and hesitating members. As could be expected, the French president started first with defence – an area where intensive work is ongoing on the deepening of integration. Defence is a central part of his vision to create a European sovereignty. He proposes a “common intervention force“, which is a euphemism of a European army; a common defence budget and something very important – a common doctrine for action. The latter is a very bold idea to converge defence cultures. As part of that he proposes the member states to start accepting in their national armies soldiers from other countries.

He urged for the as quick as possible implementation of the European Defence Fund and the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO). This will be e major topic on the agenda of the October European Council. Under the heading of European sovereignty Macron proposed the establishment of a European Intelligence Academy, which is to work for convergence of intelligence services in the fight against terrorism. This issue is very sensitive for France and that is why the French president proposed a European prosecutor’s office, which is currently in the making, to be expanded to include fight against terrorism as well.

This will be one of the difficult files because even now work on the European Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO), initially planned as an office to fight fraud against EU’s financial interests, is hard and in the beginning of this year it has detached as a separate integration speed because some member states could not accept the deepening of integration in the area of the judiciary and that is why the future office will be established by 20 countries. Negotiations on its establishment have been going on for more than 3 years, as all this time the ambition of the initial draft has been significantly reduced, including by France. Italy was among the very few countries which insisted the power of the office to be expanded to cover the fight against organised crime and terrorism. Italian representatives in Brussels expressed satisfaction on Twitter with Macron’s speech.

The French president’s bold ideas are many: creation of a common force for civil protection; a common asylum agency which will process asylum requests; a European border police (a stronger version of the current Border and Coast Guard agency); an agency for breakthrough innovation; a European trade prosecutor who will investigate whether EU’s trade partners are adhering to the rules, and will sanction unfair practises (this is a continuation of the European Commission idea for a change of EU’s trade policy with a focus on introducing reciprocity); introducing a carbon border tax to be collected at EU’s external borders; launching an industrial programme to support production of ecologically clean cars and infrastructure.

Solidarity though taxation convergence

Among the proposals is the one for more taxation convergence, which means creation of criteria for gradual convergence of social and taxation models between the member states. Emmanuel Macron believes that adherence to these criteria should be linked to access to European solidarity funds. Macron also proposes to define a “corridor” of corporate tax rates and of social affairs (minimum wage). Surprisingly, the French president has beaten the dust out of the idea to introduce a financial transaction tax, which has been suffering failure after failure for years.

Currently, only 10 member states are ready to introduce it but even among them negotiations are going on very slowly and it is possible that they fail. In an attempt to motivate the sceptic member states Emmanuel Macron decided to give personal example announcing that the French proceeds from such a tax will be invested in a European development fund.

In search of a European Palo Alto?

The French president focused a lot on Europe’s digital lagging behind and called for complete transformation. His focus, however, was more on rethinking taxation of digital companies and regulation of big platforms. The establishment of an agency for breakthrough innovation he sees as something that could boost the creation of European breakthroughs in the digital area. Will this lead to breakthroughs of the scale of Elon Musk’s activities, who sparked a revolution in the auto market and in the approach toward Space, or Mark Zuckerberg, whose Facebook affected even democratic elections? Hardly through opening of new agencies only.

Emmanuel Macron listed a serious number of new agencies, although a large part of them would have rather a symbolic purpose – to show where the EU should work together. In Europe, though, it is bureaucracy that is nipping in the bud personal initiative, and the lack of alternative funding to the monopoly of banks is another problem which keeps Europe stuck in the 20th century, whereas America is already deep into the waters of the 21st century.

A European identity

European leaders have rarely paid attention on education as a tool to build European identity. Emmanuel Macron believes that every student should by 2024 know at least two European languages and proposes the establishment of European universities that will give students opportunity to study abroad. Half of every group age of young Europeans should spend at least 6 months in another European country.

Breaking of taboos in exchange

As a sweetener to some of his boldest and most contentious proposals Emmanuel Macron is proposing the opening of some French taboos. One of them is the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), which has always been a red line for Paris. According to him, CAP should pursue two main goals. First is to protect from volatility of the global markets, and the other is to inspire a serious agricultural transition, allowing more flexibility at national level and reducing bureaucracy. There are no details in his speech, which shows that the main purpose behind the raising of the issue is to rather demonstrate France’s readiness for change. This move has a great significance against the backdrop of two key developments – Brexit and the upcoming negotiations on the next multiannual financial framework.

In terms of Brexit the consequences for CAP are two. The first is that Britain has always been a major driver of reduction of the CAP share in the common budget. In the very beginning, since there are EU budgets, CAP share was almost 80% of the expenditure until it shrank to its current share of less than 40%. UK’s exit created fears that France will now feel unconstrained to insist on increasing subsidies for French farmers. The second consequence is that Britain is a large donor despite the solid rebate it benefits from.

Without Britain the European budget will have less money and the initial reaction of the member states was that they don’t want a change of the status-quo – each of them wants to keep its current allocations while, if possible, without paying more. The goals outlined by Macron on the future CAP hint that this policy will be allocated much less money. France’s readiness for a change of this sacred for the country issue is an invitation to the others to make concessions too.

Macron returned on the table another issue which has always been a source of conflict in the EU – reduction of the number of commissioners. This issue was raised for the first time on the eve of the big-bang enlargement of the EU with 10 more countries in 2004 with the aim to make the Commission more efficient. All previous proposals to cut the number of commissioners failed. The French president proposes the number of commissioners to be reduced to 15. This should happen before the next EU enlargement to the Western Balkans (by the way Macron did not at all mention Turkey in the context of enlargement in his speech), whom he warned though that although the door for them is open, the EU is a rule of law and democracy zone.

As part of the reform of the European institutions Macron proposes to introduce a pan-European electoral ballot for the upcoming European Parliament elections in 2019. The idea is not new, but so far member states couldn’t find will to get rid of their numbers of MEPs, agreed after tough negotiations on the Lisbon Treaty. The leaving of the UK opens an opportunity because 73 seats will be left vacant. For several weeks in the EU a debate has been going on on the possibility, if not all the British seats, at least some to be left to a common European election. The pan-European list (also known as trans-European) suggests voting for candidates from any point in the EU.

The idea behind this proposal is to break the link between national and European politics. Emmanuel Macron not only entirely supported the idea but also proposed later in time (possibly for the elections after 2019) half of the EP members to be elected through a pan-European list. This would have a huge impact when the big integration of the euro area happens because it is envisaged the parliament to oversee the decision-making process in the currency club. Emmanuel Macron, just like Jean-Claude Juncker, excluded the possibility of creating a separate parliament for the euro area. According to him, it is a serious mistake to view the EP as a continuation of national politics.

Building a sovereign Europe requires MEPs to be supranational. He imagines the European Parliament as a melting pot. On the occasion of European elections, Macron revealed his anti-systemic nature. His movement En Marche! is not a member of any of the European political families nor does it intend to become. Moreover, he said in his speech that he would not allow these parties to keep their monopoly over the debate for Europe and the European elections. This position of his could influence significantly the procedure for election of a European Commission president, known as Spitzenkandidaten, and introduced for the first time for the 2014 elections.

The European political parties nominated candidates of their own. This marked a significant progress for the European democracy because the candidates participated in debates broadcast live throughout the EU and outlined their views for the future. Jean-Claude Juncker was appointed president, because the European People’s Party, whose candidate he was, won the 2014 elections. It seems the French president has some ambitions his party to also participate in the Spitzenkandidaten procedure. It is not quite clear yet how can this happen but it is a serious demand, which suggests the next European elections will be much more interesting than the previous ones.

A coalition of the willing is being built

The time horizon for the changes Emmanuel Macron is proposing is 2024, as the beginning is to be in 2018 when democratic conventions will be established all over Europe to discuss the proposals for reform, including the enhanced cooperation procedure and possible treaty change. In addition, Macron is creating a group of reformist countries which are to push for reform. This group will consist of representatives of each participating country and of the European institutions. Apart from the natural ally Germany (with which Macron proposes to conclude a new Elysee treaty on 22 January next year), Macron invited also Italy, Spain, Portugal, Belgium, The Netherlands, Luxembourg. He said that everyone who wishes a change is also welcome.

The proposal for a new Elysee treaty also bears a lot of symbolism. This means an ambition of the scale of the first steps toward a united Europe made after the end of World War II. A curious coincidence is that the 50th anniversary of the treaty passed under the shadow of David Cameron’s “European” speech, with which he proposed a Brexit referendum. A speech that has caused a series of devastating events. The choice of date for the former prime minister’s speech was quite indicative for the British moods at the time. The French president proposes France and Germany to fully integrate their markets by 2024, meaning to apply the same rules for business and this to be part of the new treaty.

There were times before when Berlin and Paris had ambitions to be pioneers in wading in the deepest integration waters, but so far not much has been done, and with the new post-election political scene in Germany Macron’s ideas might not be welcomed warmly. Positive reaction to Macron’s speech in Germany came from the Greens, who are a potential coalition partner, and from the Social Democrats. The Free Democrats poured cold water over Macron’s ambition. Among the conservatives there were reservations as well but not in all corners. The speech was welcomed in other parts of Europe as well. The first test will be in October at the EU summit.

In his European speech, the French president outlined many proposals for large-scale and deep reforms of the Union, but they are not the most important part in his speech. The discussion of these proposals is rather a technical issue and certainly a common denominator will be found in the Council if and when they reach the Council in the form of legislative proposals. The most important part in his speech is the timing. The EU is facing a new era. For the first time a member will leave, especially a country which has always played a key part in the building of Europe (more often as a handbrake). On the other hand, the Union is facing the betrayal of some of its mainly new members, which has put to the test the values which it was built upon.

The third challenge is the future integration of the countries from the Western Balkans, for which Emmanuel Macron said he wants to make the EU so attractive that they wouldn’t need to turn their back on Europe and look for Russia, Turkey or other authoritarian forces which do not protect “our values“. As a matter of fact, some of the candidate countries hinted they don’t want to be isolated from the process of changes of the EU. In a tweet in French, Albania Prime Minster Edi Rama welcomed Emmanuel Macron’s powerful speech, which, in his words, would wake Europe up and that is something everyone needs, including the candidate countries.

Macron entirely supports the concept of a multi-speed Europe and in his vision the main motor of the Union is the euro area. The creation of a group of like-minders is in fact a last call for the passengers. His speech should not be viewed only in the context of relations with Germany, especially given the election results, because the French president’s ambition is big enough to allow France to be the leading part of the Franco-German motor in case Germany closes in and becomes introvert.

In 2019, when the big bang reform is about to start, 10 years will have passed since the entering into force of the Lisbon Treaty. A new treaty was necessary even before its entry into force. Not only there was no appetite for change, but there were also no leaders. Now, there’s both. So, buckle up! It will be bumpy.

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French Police Attack Protest Against Nuclear Waste Site

  • French National Radioactive Waste Management Agency digging a tunnel in Bure, France, June 11, 2012.
    French National Radioactive Waste Management Agency digging a tunnel in Bure, France, June 11, 2012. | Photo: Reuters
Protest organizers said 36 people were injured, with six gravely hurt.

Police in northeast France used water cannons and fired tear gas and stun grenades Tuesday against demonstrators protesting plans to store nuclear waste at an underground site.

RELATED: Iran Threatens to Quit Nuclear Deal if US Imposes New Sanctions

The issue has been raging for years as the waste is the dangerous long-term by-product of France’s extensive nuclear energy program.

Around 300 protesters took part in the demonstration in Bure, a commune in the Meuse department, against plans to store highly radioactive waste 500 meters underground.

Protest organizers said 36 people were injured, with six gravely hurt in the clashes, while the local prefecture said at least three demonstrators had been injured, according to calls to emergency services.

The protest was one in a series to try to block the waste site.

France’s Environment Minister Nicolas Hulot has said he needs more information before he gave his position on the project.

Earlier this month, the Nuclear Safety Authority said it had “reservations” about the project, known as Cigeo, citing uncertainty about the potential danger from highly inflammable material in the case of rising temperatures.

In July, the National Agency for the Management of Radioactive Waste said construction of the storage site would start in 2022 at the earliest.

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Frans Timmermans Showed Poland the Door


The European Commission today discussed the EU’s “nuclear option” regarding the most recent decisions of the Polish government with which the rule of law would be virtually completely destroyed. “Given the latest developments, we are coming very close to triggering article 7”, said the Commission’s first Vice President Frans Timmermans (Netherlands, Socialists and Democrats), who is in charge of the rule of law. On Wednesday, the College of Commissioners discussed the latest situation in Poland that arose after the government proposed a package of legislative measures that, in Mr Timmermans’ words, individually would suffice to undermine the independence of the judiciary, and would in a package “abolish any remaining judicial independence and put the judiciary under full political control of the government”.

These are four legislative acts, some of which have already been adopted by parliament. These are the law for the National School of Judicial System (enacted), the law for the National Council of the Judiciary – a body similar to the Bulgarian SJC (approved and pending signature by the president), the law on the organisation of ordinary courts (approved and pending signature by the president), and the Supreme Court Act (still in parliamentary procedure). This is yet another step of the Polish extreme conservative government of Law and Justice after removing the independence of the Constitutional Tribunal, for which the European Commission has for the first time triggered the rule of law protection mechanism.

Under this mechanism, the EC has so far sent to Warsaw an opinion and two recommendations regarding the Constitutional Tribunal. According to the Commission, the tribunal’s composition no longer complies with the Constitution, the publication of its decisions is no longer in its hands, some of the judges are lawfully elected but not appointed, whilst others are appointed but not lawfully elected. Thus, the legitimacy of the tribunal is seriously undermined, explained the first vice president. Frans Timmermans believes it is possible to get the Council’s support and the qualified majority required to trigger Article 7 of the EU Treaty (which foresees suspension of voting rights in the Council) if Poland does not take steps to withdraw the laws in question and does not return to a dialogue with the Commission. He admitted, however, that this majority is not guaranteed.

He recalled that the Commission’s concerns are shared by a large number of member states, the European Parliament and also the Council of Europe and the Venice Commission. In the College of Commissioners, support is 100%, he added. It is still unclear when the EC will make such a proposal. Frans Timmermans explained that as soon as these laws come into force, the EC will have reason to do so, but warned that it would be discussed internally when it would be most appropriate to do it. In May, Mr Timmermans discussed the situation in the General Affairs Council and back then received the support of the most important member states. The vice president announced that he would speak with the Estonian rotating presidency to negotiate the most appropriate time to hold the next Council meeting on this subject.

This is unlikely to happen before the start of the next political season as the European institutions are already preparing for the summer break. However, before resorting to Article 7, the EC will prepare the third successive recommendation on the rule of law mechanism for the College meeting next week. The EC is also expected to open infringement procedures at that point. The vice president explained that what is happening in Poland raises concerns for violation of the Polish Constitution but also of the European legislation, as the Polish courts, as practically courts in all member states, act as EU courts. Therefore, the laws prepared concern anyone doing business in or with Poland, as well as ordinary citizens who are simply visiting the country.

Frans Timmermans used the occasion to criticise Poland about intimidating journalists as well. The reason for this was the incident last week when, during the Commission’s regular midday press briefing in Brussels, Dorota Bawolek asked for a comment on the situation with democracy in Poland but did not get any, which provoked her to say, “You`d rather talk about a country that is leaving the European Union than about one that is still a member and that, if you refuse to commentate on what is happening, will also be at risk of leaving”. The incident was qualified by the Polish national television as a “provocation,” and in the social networks Dorota Bawolek was declared a “traitor”, “prostitute” and “anti-Polish manipulator”. There are also indications of many threats.

The Polsat National Television channel also pronounced her a state traitor. Frans Timmermans called for the threats to end. “What should not be happening is anybody sitting in this room, who wants to ask critical questions of me, would feel a reservation, fear for consequences to do that. That’s not how it works in a free society”, he said and quoted the motto of The Washington Post newspaper that in darkness democracy dies. The first vice-President also explained that the situation in Poland is different from the one in Hungary, as Hungary does not talk about a reform that puts the judiciary under the control of a minister in a way that undermines the division of powers.

The EP political groups supported the Commission’s actions. EPP President Manfred Weber (Germany) wrote on Twitter that there is no doubt that the government of Law and Justice is trying to abolish the rule of law and that should be stopped. Gianni Pittella (Italy), leader of the second-largest group Socialists and Democrats, said the Polish government is constantly jeopardising the rule of law and the legal basis of democracy. The group welcomes the EC’s “swift” reaction. “Should the Polish government and authorities continue to disregard the warning signals from Brussels concerning the independence of the judiciary, the S&D Group considers it requisite the activation of all possible infringement proceedings against Poland for the violation of EU law”, Pittella believes.

The leader of the group of Liberals, Guy Verhofstadt (Belgium), also supported the EC’s actions. Sven Giegold (Germany), a member of the Greens Group, welcomed the Commission’s criticism but warned that they were questionable. “As long as there is no regular EU monitoring of the rule of law in all member states, it is easy for countries such as Poland or Hungary to denounce criticism from Brussels”, he said, and called on the EC to analyse the rule of law in all member states using the same parameters. “The EU Commission has to control the rule of law in all EU member states rather than acting as fire fighters when the democratic house is already burning”, Sven Giegold added.

With today’s warnings, the EC has also stood at the side of the thousands of Poles protesting on Sunday in front of the Supreme Court and Parliament, accusing the government of building a dictatorship. This is also the opinion of the National Council of the Judiciary, according to which Poland is on the verge of dictatorship. According to the government in Warsaw, changes serve democracy and citizens. Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro argues that the judicial system is currently completely separated from the mechanisms for democratic control.

Meanwhile, President Andrzej Duda surprisingly presented his own proposal for amendments to the controversial draft law on the appointment of members of the National Council of the Judiciary and threatened to veto the law if they are not adopted. However, Frans Timmermans said that this is not enough, as it is about amending only one of four laws, each of which seriously undermines the rule of law, and in their entirety they are abolishing the rule of law.

Frans Timmermans was emotional in saying that nothing in his political life was more important than the fall of the Iron Curtain and the Berlin Wall, as well as the 2004 enlargement when 10 new countries joined the EU, Poland among them. He promised to do everything in his power to ensure that Poland sticks to a development that respects the rule of law, democracy, openness, media freedom, market economy, opportunities for all.

“This is the clear choice that was made by Poland when they freed themselves from communist oppression. We didn’t do that. The Poles did that themselves, starting in Gdansk. People we can always admire such as Lech Wałęsa. They did themselves. But the EU did help. At the outset Poland was in comparably the same situation as Ukraine economically, socially, politically in some way. Now look at the difference! It’s two worlds of difference perhaps. And part of this is because we had the rule of law, because we had independent judges, because corruption could be tackled by independent courts. That’s why you don’t have oligarchs in Poland. That’s why you don’t have a corrupt society in Poland, which is a scourge for the people of Ukraine”, were the words of Frans Timmermans.

Polish Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska, responsible for the internal market, warned that the atmosphere of Wednesday’s discussion in the College suggests that what is going on in Poland will have very bad consequences on the discussions on the EU budget. “I’m sure this will also affect the budget discussions”, she said without specifying what she meant exactly. Next year, the EU is about to begin talks on the future financial framework of the Union for the period after 2020. These are likely to be the most difficult talks so far due to the departure of one of the largest donors in the European budget – Great Britain – and because of the shift in priorities when there is already a more significant focus on common defence, migration and foreign policy.

The new member states are uniting in a common front, demanding that the Cohesion Policy of the Union be preserved. This will be one of the leading topics of the Bulgarian presidency of the Council, which will start on 1 January next year. The situation in Poland and also the resistance of other Central European countries led by Hungary against showing solidarity in the distribution of refugees have been a reason for some donor countries to demand the suspension of EU funds for members that deviate from the rules or the EU’s value system. Commissioner Bieńkowska’s statement confirms that this will be one of the most serious disputes during the budget discussions.

Translated by Stanimir Stoev

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Zionist Macron: Anti-Zionism Is a Reinvented Form of anti-Semitism

Macron: Anti-Zionism Is a Reinvented Form of anti-Semitism

Speaking at a ceremony commemorating the victims of the mass roundup of Jews in Paris in WWII, the French president assailed Le Pen and said France must take responsibility for the Vichy regime and Nazi collaboration

Bibi embraces his new puppet. Macron could not have made his supplicancy more obvious if he had fellated Bibi in front of the Arc de Triomphe.

[Editor’s note: Macron is showing his true colours as a thoroughly compliant stooge for the Judeo-Zionist organised crime cabal. The term ‘anti-semitism’ has long been weaponised and used to defame anyone who dares to criticise the Zionist criminal enclave known as Israel; by stating that criticism of Zionism and Israel is a new form of anti-semitism, Macron is doubling down on the weaponisation of language on behalf of his criminal Zionist masters.

By kissing up to Israel, and the Zionist criminals so blatantly, Macron is staining France’s dignity just as much as Petain’s Vichy did in WW2. Clearly, France is now completely under the thumb of the Zionist crime cabal and will follow whatever agenda has been laid out for them, so do not be surprised if Macron involves France in the Syrian debacle in the near future and expect France to staunchly support Israel at every opportunity. Ian]


Macron: Anti-Zionism Is a Reinvented Form of anti-Semitism

French President Emmanuel Macron delivered forceful remarks on Sunday at a ceremony marking the 75th anniversary of the deportation of Jews from Paris, attacking his political rival Marine Le Pen and other figures who claimed that the Vichy government which collaborated with the Nazis during WWII didn’t represent France. 

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attended the ceremony in Paris alongside Macron.

“There are those who say Vichy wasn’t France,” Macron said. “It’s true that Vichy wasn’t all of France, but Vichy was the government of France and the French establishment It was responsible for deporting French Jews, and not the Germans.”

Macron said that denying or hiding France’s role in WWII is a disgrace.

“We have a responsibility to realize where and when we have failed,” he said. “The underground and those who rescued Jews saved France’s dignity, but the Vichy government was the reality. It’s convenient and easy to see Vichy as something perpetrated by foreign agents but it was the reality. You can’t build pride on a lie.”

Macron condemned Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism in France today, saying that it has taken a new shape, and that anti-Zionist and anti-Israel expressions should be opposed. “It’s a new type of anti-Semitism,” he said.

At the ceremony, Netanyahu lauded Macron’s statement from a few days ago that France in a war of civilizations against radical Islamic terrorism.

“Your struggle against militants Islam is our struggle,” he said. “We must stand against them together and defeat them together.”

Following the ceremony, Netanyahu arrived at the Élysée Palace for a sit-down with Macron.

Posted in ZIO-NAZI, FranceComments Off on Zionist Macron: Anti-Zionism Is a Reinvented Form of anti-Semitism

US, UK and France Denounce Nuclear Ban Treaty

Image result for Nuclear Ban Treaty LOGO
By David Krieger 

The US, UK and France have never shown enthusiasm for banning and eliminating nuclear weapons. It is not surprising, therefore, that they did not participate in the United Nations negotiations leading to the recent adoption of the nuclear ban treaty, or that they joined together in expressing their outright defiance of the newly-adopted treaty.

In a joint press statement, issued on July 7, 2017, the day the treaty was adopted, the US, UK and France stated, “We do not intend to sign, ratify or ever become party to it.” Seriously? Rather than supporting the countries that came together and hammered out the treaty, the three countries argued: “This initiative clearly disregards the realities of the international security environment.”  Rather than taking a leadership role in the negotiations, they protested the talks and the resulting treaty banning nuclear weapons. They chose hubris over wisdom, might over right.

They based their opposition on their belief that the treaty is “incompatible with the policy of nuclear deterrence, which has been essential to keeping the peace in Europe and North Asia for over 70 years.” Others would take issue with their conclusion, arguing that, in addition to overlooking the Korean War and other smaller wars, the peace in Europe and North Asia has been kept not because of nuclear deterrence but in spite of it.

The occasions on which nuclear deterrence has come close to failure, including during the Cuban missile crisis, are well known. The absolute belief of the US, UK and France in nuclear deterrence seems more theological than practical.

The three countries point out, “This treaty offers no solution to the grave threat posed by North Korea’s nuclear program, nor does it address other security challenges that make nuclear deterrence necessary.” But for the countries that adopted the nuclear ban treaty, North Korea is only one of nine countries that are undermining international security by basing their national security on nuclear weapons. For countries so committed to nuclear weapons and nuclear deterrence, is it not surprising and hypocritical that they view North Korea’s nuclear arsenal not in the light of deterrence, but rather, as an aggressive force?

The three countries reiterate their commitment to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), but do not mention their own obligation under that treaty to pursue negotiations in good faith for an end to the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament. The negotiations for the new nuclear ban treaty are based on fulfilling those obligations. The three countries chose not to participate in these negotiations, in defiance of their NPT obligations, making their joint statement appear self-serving and based upon magical thinking.

If the US, UK and France were truly interested in promoting “international peace, stability and security” as they claim, they would be seeking all available avenues to eliminate nuclear weapons from the world, rather than planning to modernize and enhance their own nuclear arsenals over the coming decades.

These three nuclear-armed countries, as well as the other six nuclear-armed countries, continue to rely upon the false idol of nuclear weapons, justified by nuclear deterrence. In doing so, they continue to run the risk of destroying civilization, or worse. The 122 nations that adopted the nuclear ban treaty, on the other hand, acted on behalf of every citizen of the world who values the future of humanity and our planet, and should be commended for what they have accomplished.

The new treaty will open for signatures in September 2017, and will enter into force when 50 countries have acceded to it. It provides an alternative vision for the human future, one in which nuclear weapons are seen for the threat they pose to all humanity, one in which nuclear possessors will be stigmatized for the threats they pose to all life. Despite the resistance of the US, UK and France, the nuclear ban treaty marks the beginning of the end of the nuclear age.

Posted in USA, France, UKComments Off on US, UK and France Denounce Nuclear Ban Treaty

Macron Cracks Down on French Liberty

Image result for Macron JEWISH CARTOON
By Jonathan Marshall 

French President Emmanuel Macron — the “great hope” of Europe — told French legislators a few days ago that he plans to extend his nation’s draconian and counterproductive state of emergency for a sixth time later this month — to give his government time to prepare a tough new anti-terrorism law to replace it.

In a breathtaking display of doublespeak, Macron claimed that his plan will “re-establish the freedoms of the French people.” But enshrining into law the essence of France’s harsh anti-terrorism decrees will limit the nation’s hard-won liberties while doing nothing to curb police incompetence, which has repeatedly allowed known extremists to carry out their heinous acts.

Civil liberties and human rights groups have denounced Macron’s blueprint for augmenting the central government’s police powers. His draft law would give local representatives of the Interior Ministry the power to declare security zones, define who can enter or leave them, use electronic tags to restrict the movement of people considered a national security threat, close mosques and other centers of worship, and — with only limited judicial oversight — search private property.

“These measures would trample individual and shared liberties and would lead us toward an authoritarian state,” France’s League of Human Rights declared. “Far from relating only to terrorist acts, these measures would be applied to a wide range of offences. Anyone could become a victim of arbitrary decisions.”

Amnesty International recently condemned the government’s abuse of anti-terrorist emergency powers that restrict freedom of movement and rights to peaceful assembly.

“Under the cover of the state of emergency, rights to protest have been stripped away with hundreds of activists, environmentalists, and labor rights campaigners unjustifiably banned from participating in protests,” said Marco Perolini, Amnesty International’s researcher on France.

Repressing Dissent

In the name of preventing “threats to public order,” the government over a period of 18 months issued 155 decrees banning protests, and 574 measures prohibiting specific individuals from taking part in protests against proposed labor law changes.

The latter statistic is particularly notable because Macron plans to issue sweeping decrees to limit the power of unions over working conditions and company firing policies. Such proposals have triggered mass demonstrations and violent clashes with police, in recent months.

The French government imposed its state of emergency — modeled after one instituted in 1955 during the Algerian war — after coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris on Nov. 13, 2015, killed 130 people and injured 368 more. Those attacks followed the January 2015 slaughter of 12 people at the Paris office of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, and of four hostages at a kosher supermarket. The attacks were perpetrated by followers of ISIS and of al-Qaeda in Yemen.

French parliamentary investigation last year found little evidence that either the state of emergency or the showy stationing of troops on Parisian streets did much to enhance France’s security. It concluded that the country’s fragmented and competing security agencies had suffered a “global failure” of communication and coordination.

As it happens, police were well aware of all three extremists who carried out the January 2015 massacres and of leaders of the November 2015 attacks, but lacked the manpower to keep them under permanent surveillance. Indeed, they traveled across Europe and to Yemen and North Africa with remarkable ease, despite official knowledge of their dangerous proclivities.

In the Guardian’s words, “Amedy Coulibaly, who killed four people in a siege at a kosher grocery store in January (2015) and shot dead a policewoman, was a known radical and repeat offender. While serving a prison sentence for his part in a plot to free another terrorist from jail, he had been flagged as radicalized. This information was not passed from prison services to intelligence agencies on his release.”

Breakdown of Intelligence

Recent French press revelations suggest an even worse breakdown of intelligence. It turns out that Coulibaly and two fellow Islamist radicals who committed the January 2015 attacks acquired their weapons, through an intermediary, from a right-wing police informant and former mercenary named Claude Hermant. He claims to have worked as an agent under the supervision of intelligence officers in the customs service and gendarmerie, a national military police force under the Ministry of Interior.

Information about Hermant’s role was suppressed in 2015 by the Interior Minister, who invoked a state secrets privilege. Hermant’s lawyer has filed a lawsuit to lift the ban on discussion of his client’s connection to the intelligence services. A French newspaper has also published explosive emails from a gendarme giving Hermant the “green light” to move cases of weapons, one of which apparently ended up in Islamist hands due to police incompetence.

History is replete with examples of police and intelligence services that allow agents to run amok, often because of inadequate supervision, occasionally for more sinister reasons. Serious investigators have asked whether the Boston Marathon bomber, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, might have been a federal informant. And there seems to be no question but that the al-Qaeda terrorist who led the 1998 Nairobi Embassy bombing and trained most of the organization’s top leadership — Ali Mohammed — was protected by the FBI and CIA.

Granting more powers to such agencies and shielding them from judicial review compounds the problem by preventing exposure and correction of their bureaucratic failures. Ordinary citizens and their liberties are best protected when law enforcement is subject to public review and criticism, not protected by official secrets acts and emergency decrees that cover up their incompetence, disorganization, or lack of resources. The people of America and France both should learn from their respective national failures that freedom is not won by repression.

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Velayati Blasts France for Hosting MKO Terrorists

Velayati Blasts France for Hosting MKO Terrorists
Head of the Strategic Research Center of Iran’s State Expediency Council Ali Akbar Velayati lashed out at France for permitting the Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO, also known as the MEK, PMOI and NCRI) terrorist group to hold a meeting in Paris, describing the move against the regional and international peace.

“We oppose the hostile acts carried out in Paris and naturally, hosting the terrorists and those who have a record of terrorist acts like the Monafeqin (hypocrites as the MKO members are called in Iran) will not benefit regional and international peace,”  Velayati said in a meeting with Secretary-General of the French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs Christian Masset in Tehran on Monday.

He underlined Iran’s anti-terrorism efforts in the region, and said, “Had it not been for Iran’s resolve and principled policy, the terrorist groups and their supporters would have years ago entered the European countries and they couldn’t have been controlled.”

Before Velayati, the Iranian foreign ministry had also protested at France for permitting the MKO terrorist group to hold a meeting in Paris, blasting the European country’s double-standard approach on terrorism.

“Necessary protests have been leveled against France for giving permission to the terrorist group,” Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on Sunday.

“Undoubtedly, the French side is making a serious mistake about the terrorist group. Terrorists are terrorists anywhere they are and Paris should avoid double-standards in this regard,”  he added.

On Saturday, the MKO terrorist group held a meeting in Paris, which was attended by some of the former US, European and Saudi Zio-Wahhabi officials, including former Saudi Mossad spy chief, Prince Turki al-Faisal, who also delivered a speech.

On July 9, 2016, Paris hosted another annual meeting organized by the MKO terrorist group, which was also attended by Zionist Faisal.

The MKO, founded in the 1960s, blended elements of Islamism and participated in the overthrow of the US-backed Shah of Iran in 1979. Ahead of the revolution, the MKO conducted attacks and assassinations against both Iranian and western targets.

The group started assassination of the citizens and officials after the revolution in a bid to take control of the newly-established Islamic Republic. It killed several of Iran’s new leaders in the early years after the revolution, including the then President, Mohammad Ali Rajayee, Prime Minister, Mohammad Javad Bahonar and the Judiciary Chief, Mohammad Hossein Beheshti who were killed in bomb attacks by the MKO members in 1981.

The group fled to Iraq in 1986, where it was protected by Saddam Hussein and where it helped the Iraqi dictator suppress Shiite and Kurd uprisings in the country.

The terrorist group joined Saddam’s army during the Iraqi imposed war on Iran (1980-1988) and helped Saddam and killed thousands of Iranian civilians and soldiers during the US-backed Iraqi imposed war on Iran.

Since the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, the group, which now adheres to a pro-free-market philosophy, has been strongly backed by ‘Israel’ and the neo-conservatives in the United States, who argued for the MKO to be taken off the US terror list.

The US formally removed the MKO from its list of terror organizations in September 2012, one week after Secretary of State Zionist Hillary Clinton sent the US Congress a classified communication about the move. The decision made by Clinton enabled the group to have its assets under the US jurisdiction unfrozen and do business with the American entities, the State Department said in a statement at the time.

In September 2012, the last groups of the MKO terrorists left Camp Ashraf, their main training center in Iraq’s Diyala province. They have been transferred to Camp Liberty. Hundreds of the MKO terrorists have now been sent to Europe, where their names were taken off the blacklist even two years before the US.

The MKO has assassinated over 12,000 Iranians in the last 4 decades. The terrorist group had even killed large numbers of Americans and Europeans in several terror attacks before the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

Some 17,000 Iranians have lost their lives in terror attacks in the 35 years after the Revolution.

Rumors were confirmed last September about the death of MKO ringleader, Massoud Rajavi, as a former top Saudi intelligence official disclosed in a gaffe during an address to his followers.

Rajavi’s death was revealed after Saudi Zio-Wahhabi  Turki al-Faisal who was attending the MKO annual gathering in Paris made a gaffe and spoke of the terrorist group’s ringleader as the “late Rajavi” twice.

Faced with Zionist Faisal’s surprising gaffe, Rajavi’s wife, Maryam, changed her happy face with a complaining gesture and cued the interpreter to be watchful of translation words and exclude the gaffe from the Persian translation.

Posted in France, IranComments Off on Velayati Blasts France for Hosting MKO Terrorists

Zionist Maryam Rajavi — MEK Propaganda Queen — Advertises Her Services For Iran’s Enemies 

Massoud Khodabandeh,
Clearly this message is not aimed at Iranians. The clamour for regime change in Iran does not emanate from inside the country in spite of its many social, civic and political problems. Who then is Maryam Rajavi’s constituency? From whom is she hoping to garner support?Many constituencies outside Iran wish fervently for its destruction. It is enlightening that Maryam Rajavi’s … 


What does it mean when we say ISIS operates as a mind control cult?

Maryam Rajavi — MEK Propaganda Queen — Advertises Her Services For Iran’s Enemies

Co-authored by Anne Khodabandeh


The Middle East is in turmoil. Deaths and destruction are a daily occurrence throughout the region. Families flee their homes in fear, forced into an uncertain future. No end is in sight. Yet into this calamitous scenario a slick, sophisticated terrorist recruiter’s advert has popped up which ISIS itself could learn from.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) website carries a glamorous advertising campaign for a Grand Gathering. Surrounded by glitzy pictures of flag-waving youth, the central focus of this gathering is ‘Our pledge: regime change’.

Well, we all know what that means. Don’t we? Apparently not. Because this advertising doesn’t reflect the destruction wrought in Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen. Here is no promise of jihad and the caliphate. It looks very much like a carnival. Which is exactly what it is – a show. So, what is meant by the promise of regime change?

The first port of call is to understand that the NCRI is just another name for the Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK) which was also known as the National Liberation Army of Iran (NLA).

Back in 1994, MEK leader Massoud Rajavi tasked his wife Maryam to leave Iraq for America in order to regain political recognition of the Mojahedin Khalq as ‘the’ Iranian opposition which had been lost when he refused to abandon Saddam Hussein during the First Gulf war.

Refused entry to the USA as the leader of a terrorist entity Maryam instead took up residence in France as a refugee. But instead of meeting politicians to talk about how the MEK could overthrow the Iranian regime, she discovered she could simply create the illusion of support by paying both audience and speakers. She discovered a talent for dressing up, holding fancy dinner parties and talking about her cult ideology.

To create the appearance of a willing audience for her views, she recruited a rag-tag following of Iranian economic refugees who would happily turn up when paid for their services. She paid for feminists from North America, Europe and Scandinavia to visit Auvers-sur-Oise and attend dinner parties. She posed in her hijab to speak about her version of feminism to these western women; carefully spelling it out for them that they would never really understand what feminism is until they understood her husband Massoud Rajavi.

When Massoud recalled her to Iraq in 1997 she had spent a third of the total MEK budget and had no political support to show for it. She had lost around half the loyal MEK members who had defected whilst in Europe. With morale at an all-time low, Maryam was forced to retreat to Iraq with what remained of her personnel and leave the western bases in the hands of largely uneducated paid ‘supporters’.


When allied forces next invaded Iraq in 2003 Maryam Rajavi again fled to France. This time, as luck would have it, western politics was focused on curtailing Iran’s nuclear programme which it insisted was aimed at creating a nuclear weapon. The MEK’s services as propaganda experts were just what was needed, ensuring the MEK’s ostensible survival as an opposition group.

But in reality the MEK was already in terminal decline. Its fighting forces, disarmed in 2003, are currently being transferred from Iraq to Albania by the UNHCR to begin a process of de-radicalisation and reintegration back into normal society. Nobody expects veterans with an average age of sixty to wage the terrorism of thirty years ago. Disarmament also allowed American experts to investigate years of complaints about human rights and cultic abuses inside the MEK. As long as the MEK was being used to muddy the waters of the nuclear negotiations, such details could be glossed over. But since last year when agreement was reached, the MEK’s murky past can no longer be dismissed.

The main reason, of course, is that the new theme for challenging Iran in the international community is based on the country’s dismal human rights record. But Maryam Rajavi has her own well documented human rights abuse dossier to answer for. The MEK, under whatever name it is used, is simply the wrong tool to use to demonise Iran.

Beyond this, the MEK is not the popular opposition its own advertising claims it to be. The group is almost universally despised among Iranians both inside the country and in the diaspora. Not only did the MEK fight alongside Saddam Hussein’s army during the devastating eight-year Iran-Iraq war, but the MEK’s anti-Iran role in the nuclear negotiations hit a nerve with most ordinary Iranians who regarded support for their country’s right to nuclear technology as an issue ofnationalism rather than politics.

Maryam Rajavi cannot get support from Iranians unless it is paid for. Nor can Maryam Rajavi deign to share a platform with any other Iranian opposition personality. So this year Maryam Rajavi will again do what she does best; pay audience and speakers alike to give the illusion of support.

So, back to the recent advertising campaign. Any publicity campaign will be successful if it is newsworthy. Maryam, however, simply churns out the same scenario ad infinitum. Starting with describing a terrible situation in Iran – based on news items that can be gleaned from any serious reporting outlet – she then proposes a ten-point plan for Iran, approved this year by Italian parliamentarians. And then she promises regime change.

Clearly this message is not aimed at Iranians. The clamour for regime change in Iran does not emanate from inside the country in spite of its many social, civic and political problems. Who then is Maryam Rajavi’s constituency? From whom is she hoping to garner support?

Many constituencies outside Iran wish fervently for its destruction. It is enlightening that Maryam Rajavi’s websites are home to a bizarre mixture of anti-Shia, anti-Iran, anti-Syria, items which reflect very closely the views of neocons, Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Maryam Rajavi is not promising regime change, she is advertising her services as a propaganda queen.

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