The agreement was signed by Sheikh Ahmad Moaz al-Khatib, who is the newly elected president of the coalition, and Georges Sabra, head of the Syrian National Council (SNC), which is the main member of the new coalition.
Prominent dissident Riad Seif, who had tabled an initiative to unite the opposition, and female opposition figure Suhair al-Atassi, were elected as vice presidents of the coalition.
Khatib had served in the past as the imam of the central Umayyad mosque in the Syrian capital before he was banned from leading prayers. He was arrested in 2011 and in 2012 over supporting the uprising before he left the country.
Atassi comes from the central flashpoint city of Homs, and belongs to a family that has been active in the secular opposition. She is not a member of the SNC.
...Ruling out any dialogue with the Damascus regime..
The SNC had come under intense Arab and Western pressure to accept the unity plan amid growing frustration among other groups opposed to President Bashar al-Assad.
Qatar said on Sunday that the new Syrian opposition should be recognized as the only legitimate representative of the Syrian people.
Qaradawi fled Egypt when Nasser figured out that he could not allow the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) to remain as a fifth column inside Egypt. It was no secret that while Nasser was aligned with the socialist camp, the MB served as a tool of the US and Gulf regime during the Cold War...
Gulf regimes (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the UAE primarily) opened their borders and universities and ministries to the Islamists. They filled top posts in government, particularly in education, awqaf (religious endowment), and even in policy making. Sudanese Islamists were instrumental in drafting the constitutions of several Gulf states.
Qaradawi was hosted in Qatar and he taught at its university. But unlike most Islamists in exile, he established a close relationship with the current Emir. Qaradawi was a key ingredient in the formation of Al Jazeera, and he even helped staff the network with many Islamists from several Arab countries.
Qaradawi has been noted for his political cowardice: not only for his subservience (like all other Islamists in the GCC countries) to the ruler, but for strictly adhering to the foreign policies of the ruler. Qaradawi never ever criticized Bashar Assad and even showered him with praise, until the Emir decided to break with the Assad regime. Qaradawi was also favorable in his views on Iran until this past year when Qatar changed course.
Qaradawi is but one case of a phenomenon in the Arab world: a cleric for hire.
The Arab League on Monday recognized a newly formed Syrian opposition bloc as “legitimate,” urging more opposition groups to join the coalition. Arab foreign ministers gathered in Cairo in a statement after talks called the National Council, formed in Doha on Sunday, “the legitimate representative and main interlocutor with the Arab League.” They called on “the rest of the opposition to join this national coalition...”(the picture shows an arab league meeting in 2010)
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) said Monday its six member states have decided to recognize the newly formed National Coalition of the Syrian opposition as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people. The GCC comprises Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar and Kuwait. ... Late Sunday, the United States also declared its support for the united Syrian opposition.Hezbollah slams Syrian opposition bloc
The head of Lebanon’s Shiite group Hezbollah denounced a newly formed Syrian opposition bloc as a U.S. invention whose refusal to negotiate would only lead to more destruction.
“They (the Syrian opposition) met in Doha, locked themselves in a hotel to form a new group and did what (U.S. Secretary of State Hillary) Clinton and America wanted,” Hassan Nasrallah told a Beirut ceremony, speaking by video link. “But the most dangerous aspect is that the opposition parties decided unanimously in Doha to reject dialogue and a political solution.” “That is to say, they have chosen the path of destruction. And who will profit from this? Clinton, the United States, Israel and certain regional parties.”
He again called on the Syrian opposition to engage in dialogue with Assad, an appeal already rejected outright by the dissidents who say any talks are conditional on Assad’s departure.
MOSCOW, (SANA) – Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Alexander Lukashevich reiterated on Monday that linking the future of Syria to those who depend on violence and terrorism is unacceptable. He said that Russia rejects the behavior of the fundamentalists in the Syrian armed opposition. He also reiterated the call on all sides if the crisis to stop violence and launch a political process as soon as possible, calling on foreign players to support progress in this regard according to Geneva agreement endorsed last June.
Lukashevich affirmed that those who are thinking of modernizing Syria democratically in a manner that respects its sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity should work through the framework of the Security Council resolutions and the Geneva Declaration.
He also noted that Moscow is maintaining communication with the Syrian government and all sides of the opposition to convince them to adopt such a constructive position.
The conflict in Syria will only end when all sides are assured that there is a peaceful way towards a common future for all in Syria. It is therefore essential that any settlement provides for clear and irreversible steps in the transition according to a fixed time frame. The key steps in any transition include:
• The establishment of a transitional governing body, which can establish a neutral environment in which the transition can take place.
• It is for the Syrian people to determine the future of the country. All groups and segments of society in Syria must be enabled to participate in a National Dialogue process.
Col Muammar Gaddafi’s convoy was bombed by an American Predator drone and then attacked by French jets before the deposed dictator was killed by rebel fighters, defence sources disclosed.
Gaddafi had been under surveillance by Nato forces for the past week after an intelligence breakthrough allowed them to pinpoint his location. An American drone and an array of Nato eavesdropping aircraft had been trained on his Sirte stronghold to ensure he could not escape.
MI6 agents and CIA officers on the ground were also providing intelligence and it is believed that Gaddafi was given a code name in the same way that US forces used the name Geronimo during the operation to kill Osama bin Laden.
“US Predators and French drones have been staking out the centre of Sirte for several weeks trying to monitor what’s going on on the battlefield,” said an intelligence source. “They built up a normal pattern of life picture so that when something unusual happened this morning such as a large group of vehicles gathering together, that came across as highly unusual activity and the decision was taken to follow them and prosecute an attack.”
The Predator drone, flown out of Sicily and controlled via satellite from a base outside Las Vegas, struck the convoy with a number of Hellfire anti-tank missiles. Moments later French jets, most likely Rafales, swept in, targeting the vehicles with 500lb Paveway bombs or highly accurate £600,000 AASM munitions.
Now that the CIA's proxy army has murdered Gadhafi, what next for Libya?
If Washington's plans succeed, Libya will become another American puppet state. Most of the cities, towns, and infrastructure have been destroyed by air strikes by the air forces of the US and Washington's NATO puppets. US and European firms will now get juicy contracts, financed by US taxpayers, to rebuild Libya.
The new real estate will be carefully allocated to lubricate a new ruling class picked by Washington. This will put Libya firmly under Washington's thumb. With Libya conquered, AFRICOM will start on the other African countries where China has energy and mineral investments. ...
The formation of a so-called unified Syrian opposition, in of all places Doha Qatar, which in reality does not include many Syrian groups and factions fighting against Bashar Assad, was hailed by the West and many Sunni Muslim states as a victory and touted as the legitimate voice of the Syrian people.
The current attempt to legitimatize the armed Western-backed insurgents came in the form of a conference that was held notably outside of the territory of Syria on Sunday. A telling gathering made up of mainly Western marionettes, such much so that many of the “real” Syrian opposition leaders who are based within Syria, refused to show up and take part in the staged conference.
The setting Qatar is also telling as the country has classically supported Sunni interests and Sunni Islamists and is also the home to American military bases and the US Central Command (CENTCOM) which also has bases in Kuwait, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Oman and Pakistan.
The West is completely indifferent to the Sunni Shia difference, their goals in the region are imperialistic and as long as they can manipulate rifts in the Muslim world they will be happy to do so.
For the US there are two key goals in the region, establishing control, to facilitate the exploitation of the resources, and protecting Israel.
The duplicity is obvious and the concerns by the West are in no way humanitarian. If the government supports the US military encroachment in the region then they are a friend, if not, well they require regime change.
Saddam Hussein is an example, he was Sunni and Iraq had an oppressed Shia population, the problem for the US was not that Hussein was oppressing the Shia, the problem was that he was forming an independent policy and not cowing enough to the West’s demands. If he had allowed US bases on Iraqi territory and allowed the US free reign of the country’s resources he would still be with us today.
Another example was Muammar Gadaffi, who some say was a true Muslim because he was neither Sunni no Shia. The US decided to remove Gaddafi for the same resource reasons, because he was pursuing policies that were too independent and because he reigned over the most just and fair socialist type system in the world. Something that must not be allowed to stand by the West as it does not allow for the exploitation of the country by capitalists interests.
Back to Bashar al-Assad's Syria, as Iran’s staunchest ally, regime change is required in Syria because the West sees Syria as a threat in plans to invade and take out Iran. It is also another troublesome independent country and an arch enemy to Israel.
So what we have, in a rather simplified summary, are Sunni nations, advancing Sunni interests, the West manipulating sectarian divisions to advance imperialistic and resource interests as well as to fulfill the wishes of Israel and lastly, Iran and Syria being targeted by all sides.
|Egyptian Clerics 1-3-2012|
"It Is an Obligation to Kill Bashar Al-Assad"
Salah Abdel Maqsoud (Born: 1958) Minister of information, former Morsi presidential campaign spokesman. Has been a journalist since 1979, working on several Islamist magazines including Egyptian Dawa, al-Bashir (1985), The Banner of Islam (1987 and 1994), and Harvest of Thought (1992).
In August 2012, Abdel Maqsoud was appointed minister of information, a move that riled non-Islamist journalists and supporters of press freedom. Political activist Hazem Abdel Azim called him a “Brotherhood fanatic” and “Ikhwani to the core,” and some suspected that his relationship with powerful MB deputy supreme guide Khairat al-Shater had played a key role in his appointment.
At least five pornographic websites are among Egypt’s 100 most frequently visited online destinations this year, according to Alexa, that tracks online traffic patterns globally. The statistic proves particularly significant as Egyptian web surfers may soon be stripped of all access to Internet pornography sites.
Egypt’s Prosecutor General ordered the government’s ministries of telecommunications, interior and information to begin enforcing a ban on online porn last week.
The five most visited porn sites in Egypt rank at numbers 15, 23, 29, 67, 83, with two X-rated sites appearing in the country’s top 25 most-browsed sites, the Anaween Arabic news website reported.
Similarly, there are seven pornographic sites in Tunisia that appear among the top 100 most visited sites.. In Lebanon, the five most visited sites appear later down the list of 100, at numbers 33, 34, 45 and 52 and 58.
Pornography is not permitted throughout the Arab Muslim world, though previously in Egypt, and some other nations, the state has not actively tried to prevent access to online sites.
In Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, no pornographic sites appear on the list top 100 most-visited sites due to a filtering policy which block the sites, as is the case in most countries in the Gulf.
Pornography is more widespread than many people would like to admit; it isn’t surprising that it exists in the Middle East. But given that most of the population and institutions consider it to be highly immoral, both the levels of consumption and the presence of a pornographic industry do come as a surprise. ...
The vast majority of pornography I encountered was in digital rather than physical form; only one of my informants had any printed material, and it was brought back from America. Thus my informants collected pornography from four sources - satellite television, pirated DVDs, the internet, and off of mobile phones. Thanks to satellite dishes, it is possible to find ultra-religious Saudi televisionchannels next to racy call-in peep shows beamed from Eastern Europe. Browsing my satellite channels I counted 63 channels dedicated to religious issues and 17 channels that offered some sort of explicitly sexual content.
Although only around twenty percent of people have access to the internet in the Middle East, the growing plethora of internet cafes has allowed a greater number of people to access the internet then ever before. ...
By examining the pornography of, and about the Middle East, we gain access into a sphere that normally remains hidden. So, what is the internet being used for? According to GoogleTrends, Egyptians regularly google the word “sex” more than any other nationality, no mean feat considering the limited number of users. ...
The anonymity of the internet gives its users license to view otherwise shameful or dangerous objects with relative impunity; once again, the Middle East dominates many sex related searches.
This trend may relate to the fact that for many in the Middle East, the safest way to get sex-related material is the internet. However, the types of sexual content that people are searching for in the Middle East are striking in terms of violating cultural taboos.
For example, Egypt, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia typically rank among the top three nations searching for the terms “ass sex” and “man sex”; Egypt, Pakistan, Iran and Saudi Arabia are all usually in the top five for “sexy child”, whereas “animal sex” generates the most hits from Egypt, Pakistan, Morocco, and Turkey.
By contrast, Western nations out-search the Middle East for terms such as “teen sex”, “porn”, “blow job” and “dead sex”; Asian nations tend to rank highly for terms like “rape” or “forced sex".
Students belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood at Alexandria University inaugurated a campaign Wednesday to spread ‘chastity’ and promote a return to Islamic values such as modesty, as well as to discourage pornography.
A statement issued by the Muslim Brotherhood said the campaign will address addiction to pornographic websites and attempt to provide tools and solutions.
The movement would encourage “turning a blind eye to the opposite sex and refraining from [committing] sins, to create [an atmosphere of] ‘chastity’ within the student community, so that the energies of young people would not be wasted on prohibited paths leading to the destruction of society,” the statement added. ...
The original lawsuit to block pornographic websites was filed by a group of young people calling themselves the PURE Net campaign.
Libya's national assembly announced Tuesday the ratification of a law governing the organization of protests that could lead to jail sentences, following a series of security breaches at its premises.
The spokesperson of the General National Congress, Omar Hmeidan, said the law was passed due to the "exceptional circumstances" of the country. ...
He added that the law does not aim to restrict the right to demonstrate, calling it a measure to combat chaos and "organize demonstrations just like in other countries of the world." The law, according to a copy obtained by AFP, stipulates that organizers must give the authorities 48-hour notice on the place and time of the event.
Offenders are liable to a prison sentence of up to six months and a fine of up to 5,000 Libyan dinars (about US$4,000). The sentence could be higher if the demonstrator is armed.
HOMS, (SANA)- Almost no place in Homs city [..] seems to have been spared their attacks, as they have not only desecrated mosques and churches but also sabotaged private properties and public services establishments, including the educational facilities.
The terrorists have tried everything to prevent students from going to schools and universities, including targeting the dormitory of al-Baath University of Homs, which has affected for a while the teaching process for the students who come from other provinces and even countries.
Picture october 2011: Homs University anti-Assad protest
Rector of al-Baath Univeristy, Ahmad Mufid Subh, said a number of residential units at the dormitory were damaged due to the terrorists' attacks, with around 3,000 out of 7,000 beds went out of service. He estimated the damage caused to the University's dormitory at SYP 11.600 million.
Al-Baath University ranks as one of the leading Syrian universities.
The University is keen to mirror the real Arab identity, often mystified by false stereotypes. Besides, it reflects its pioneering role in past knowledge and up-to-date research through an effective network of academic staff and students. Achieving such eminence involves equal educational opportunities regardless of gender, age or physical abilities. On the other hand, it encourages freedom of speech and creativity. (Source)
"Al-Baath University acknowledges women’s rightful place in the academic circles ranging from composing academic and administrative staff to participation in world-class research studies. Moreover, women comprise approximately 50% of student population; a promising sign of a healthy future society whereby they function as educated mothers and effective business partners.Picture october 2012: Homs university starts new college year
The Centre for Women Studies and Development reflects this perception being one more step towards opening up new horizons for a prosperous and equal society." President of Al-Baath University, Prof. Dr. Amer Fakhouri
Egypt and other Arab states called for the emergency meeting after Israel staged more than 20 air strikes on the besieged Palestinian territory, killing Hamas military commander Ahmed Jaabari.
The 15-nation council did not condemn either side after the 90 minute meeting.
Arab nations wanted the council “to condemn that barbaric attack” by Israel and “send a strong message to call for a cessation of hostilities.” The United States strongly defended the actions of its key Middle East ally however.
Highlighting Israel’s claim that at least 768 rockets have been fired from Gaza this year, US ambassador Susan Rice told the council: “Israel, like any nation, has the right to defend itself against such vicious attacks." “There is no justification for the violence that Hamas and other terrorist organizations are employing against the people of Israel. We call on those responsible to stop these cowardly acts immediately.”
In 2011 Rice made clear that the United States and the international community saw only one choice for Gaddafi and his aides: step down from power or face significant consequences. Together with National Security Council figure Samantha Power, who already supported military intervention, and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who came to support it, the three overcame internal opposition from Defense Secretary Robert Gates, security advisor Thomas Donilon, and counterterrorism advisor John Brennan, and the administration backed U.N. action to impose the no-fly zone and authorize other military actions as necessary.
On 17 March 2011 Rice voted for United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973 which sanctioned a Libyan no-fly zone. ... Rice and Clinton played major roles in getting the Security Council to approve this resolution, Clinton said that same day that establishing a no-fly zone over Libya would require the bombing of air defenses... (Wikipedia info)“We’d like to think that women in power would somehow be less prowar, but in the Obama administration at least it appears that the bellicosity is worst among Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice and Samantha Power.” Robert Dreyfuss
In Norse mythology, a valkyrie is one of a host of female figures who decide which soldiers die in battle and which live.
CNN lists former California representative Jane Harman, now head of the Wilson Center in Washington, D.C., as a potential successor to Gen. David Petraeus as head of the Central Intelligence Agency.
This idea is a very, very bad one. Harman is an Iran hawk who would be perfectly happy to give Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu the war on Iran he so desperately wants the US to fight for him. She accepts uncritically the allegation that Iran is going for broke in trying to build a nuclear warhead.
Harman advocated trying to break up Iran along ethnic lines. The only other forces aiming at that goal are terrorist groups such as Jundullah in Baluchistan, which has allegedly received help from the Israeli Mossad. And, she virtually exults in the economic misery imposed on Iranians by US sanctions.
Harman’s elevation to the CIA would politicize the agency and distort Iran analysis, removing a potential obstacle to hawks who are annoyed that the National Intelligence Estimates don’t support Netanyahu’s alarmism.
Minister of Information, Omran al-Zoubi, said that Doha meeting constitutes another attempt to revive Istanbul Council under a new name as its statement repeated all Istanbul Council 's calls for foreign intervention in Syria and rejection of dialogue.
The Minister was speaking during the Memorial Service to Commemorate the martyrdom of Press TV correspondent, Maya Nasser, in the terrorist attack which targeted the General Staff Building in Damascus. ...
Al-Zoubi stressed that "Doha Council will be treated the same as Istanbul Council, adding that the Syrian leadership and state insist on dialogue between the political forces and the representatives of all spectrums of the Syrian people so that any upcoming government will be obliged to the outcome of this dialogue.
He added that the conspirators against Syria seek to prolong their aggression on it in an attempt to deplete the state's economic and scientific capabilities...
The Iranian Ambassador in Damascus Mohammad Raouf Sheibani said that martyr Maya conveyed the truth to the international public opinion without distortion at a time all facts have been distorted under the US-Zionist domination of the international media.
The United Nations renewed its demand that Israel comply with the international legitimacy resolutions, particularly the UN Security Council Resolution No. 497 which considers Israel's decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan as "null and void and without international legal effect".
The resolution demanded Israel immediately to rescind its decision to annex the Golan. .. Israel is also demanded to stop imposing the Israeli nationality and the Israeli ID cards on the Syrian citizens in the occupied Golan and to halt its suppressive measures taken against the Golanese.
161 countries voted in favor of the draft resolution. 35 countries contributed in presenting it which confirms the big international support to the issue of Syria's full restoration of the occupied Syria Golan to the June 4, 1967 line.
The Israeli occupation of the Syrian and Palestinian territories led to displacing of about half a million Syrian Citizens from the Golan, to which they have not been hitherto able to return, and of about a quarter of a million Palestinian refugees living in Syria who were deprived of the right to return to Palestine. (golan67.net)
PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi denounced Israel’s latest military escalation against Gaza... Ashrawi stated, in a press release, that “Israel’s latest military campaign targeting the Palestinian population in the Gaza Strip represents a blatant provocation in violation of international and humanitarian law.”
She said this assault is a deliberate attempt to damage Palestinian efforts to gain observer-state status in the United Nations General Assembly.
“The Israeli government has acted with impunity for its unilateral violations for far too long. The illegal cruel siege of the Gaza Strip, along with all other violations of international law must come to an end,” she said.
While one must concede that no single country's foreign policy is an exact carbon copy of another, there is little evidence that set the European Union (EU) apart as a platform of evenhandedness and political sensibility.
No other issue highlights European inconsistency, hypocrisy and even self-defeating policies as that of the EU stance regarding the illegal Jewish settlements in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank.
All the firm statements about the EU's commitment to international law pertaining to the illegality of the settlements, all the warnings that the ever-encroaching colonial structures impede any chances - if any exist - of a two-state solution, and all the rest, are no more than declared policies that stand in almost complete contradiction to reality on the ground.
Not only does the EU do little to show real resolve in discouraging the growth of the settlements - which now occupy nearly 42 percent of the total size of the West Bank and East Jerusalem and most of their natural resources - but, in brazenly direct ways, it actually funds the growth of these very settlements.
Europe is Israel's largest trade partner... The EU has little quarrel with being a major market that keeps the settlements prosperous and economically competitive. It is in fact doing its utmost to integrate the Israeli economy into the larger European market.
The growth of the settlements is accompanied by a parallel destruction of "Palestinian structures - including those funded by European donor support."
Israel has transferred much of its population in the settlements, colonies which were declared illegal by the fourth Geneva Convention. At present, 40% of the West Bank is inaccessible by the Palestinians as they are not allowed to reside in that area or to pass on the Israel-only roads. Moreover, they are also not allowed to travel through the security zones surrounding these settlements.
Establishment of numerous Israeli settlements followed the 1967 war... These settlements have grown to thousands throughout the West Bank and Gaza and even in the Syrian Golan Heights. And it is due to these settlements that no just solution can be reached for the Arab-Israel conflict. (Palestine Facts)
AMMAN: Thousands of protesters chanted the Arab Spring slogan “the people want the downfall of the regime” in Jordan’s capital on Friday, as demonstrations against rising prices gather force in a country so far spared the brunt of Middle East unrest.
The mainly urban Muslim Brotherhood joined protests that have erupted in the last few days, raising the spectre of lasting instability in the kingdom, a staunch US ally with the longest border with Israel.
“Go down Abdullah, go down,” the main crowd of about 4,000 protesters chanted as police, some in riot gear, largely stayed away from crowd. ... The Brotherhood’s decision to back Friday’s demonstration adds the voice of the country’s best-organised opposition movement to the protests, although top Brotherhood figures did not appear in person.
“King Abdullah should take note of the situation by going back on the decision to raise prices. The Jordanian people are unable to shoulder more burdens,” Brotherhood leader Sheikh Hamam Said said in a statement ahead of the protests.
The slogan “the people want the downfall of the regime” has emerged as the main chant of Arab Spring demonstrations that toppled autocrats from Tunisia to Yemen, in many cases bringing to power elected religious groups allied to the Brotherhood. ...
Abdullah accepted constitutional changes in August that devolved some of his powers to parliament and paved the way for a prime minister emerging from a parliamentary majority rather than one handpicked by him. However, urban politicians say he has been too slow to adopt reforms...
CAIRO: "Egypt's three churches have withdrawn from the constitutional assembly," state television quoted Bishop Pachomious -- the interim head of the Christian Coptic Orthodox church -- as saying.
The country's three churches -- the Coptic Orthodox church, the Coptic Catholic church and the Anglican church -- were represented by four people on the 100-member panel.
The Coptic Orthodox church's new pope, Tawadros II, said after his election last week that he would reject a constitution if it imposed a religious state in the Muslim-majority country.
"A constitution that hints at imposing a religious state in Egypt is absolutely rejected," he told journalists a day after he was chosen pope.
President Mohamed Morsi has pledged to allow the Christians equal rights, but the once banned Muslim Brotherhood to which Morsi belongs has repeatedly said it wants to gradually impose an Islamic state.
TEHRAN – The first meeting between representatives of the Syrian government and opposition members is scheduled to open at Tehran’s Esteghlal Hotel.
The Syrian “national dialogue” meeting will bring together about 200 Syrian figures, including religious leaders, party leaders, political figures, tribal chiefs, and representatives of Syrian opposition groups.
According to the report, a number of Syrian MPs will be attending the meeting whose motto is “No to Violence, Yes to Democracy”.
The Syrian minister of state for national reconciliation, Ali Haidar, arrived in the Iranian capital on Thursday to participate in the meeting.
Syrian National Dialogue Conference under the title " No for Violence, Yes for Dialogue and Democracy" continued activities in Tehran on Monday.
Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs, Minister of Internal Trade and Consumer Production, Qadri Jamil said in a statement "Tehran's conference represents the dividing line between the national and the non-national opposition:
"There are two parallel lines in the crisis in Syria, the line of dialogue and the line of violence.. the more the level of dialogue increases the more the level of violence decreases," Jamil added. He pointed out that the conference included the Syrian national powers, regardless of their existence inside or outside Syria, that reject the foreign interference and violence.
For his part, Minister of State for National Reconciliation Affairs, Ali Haidar, expressed Syria's readiness to sit to the dialogue table with all the parties that reject foreign interference. ... He reiterated that the Syrian government is ready to meet any Syrian at any place in the world who rejects the foreign interference and violence.
On Iran's role in finding solution to the crisis in Syria, Member of the People Assembly, Sharif Shhadeh, stressed that the west rejects Iran's contribution to finding solutions for the Arab issues.
The people of Africa will remember Gaddafi, for least one honest thing he did: he laid a strong foundation for a viable and affordable telecommunication services across Africa at a time when Africans were completely disconnected from the world. ... Gaddafi gave to the African people all it takes to keep up with today's modern life and to make it in the 21st century as a people.
Hate him or Like him, Gaddafi is a true African hero. Don't get me wrong. I am not by any means suggesting that Gaddafi was a saint. He was a human being and like any human he had his shortfalls.
We are dully aware of countless of Gaddafi's shortfalls. But we cannot allow this to blindfold us completely to many of his kind gestures and the positive implications such gestures is having on the live of the entire African continent today in our modern technological revolution.
In case you didn't know it was Gaddafi’s Libya that offered all of Africa its first revolution in modern times – connecting the entire continent by telephone, television, radio broadcasting and several other technological applications such as telemedicine and distance teaching. And thanks to the WMAX radio bridge, a low cost connection was made available across the continent, including in rural areas. Because of this, Africans of today can also watch TV in HD (high definition), communicate with people anywhere in the world with high tech telecommunication satellites, browse at a reduced price and to enjoy the services of modern telecommunication devices at a highly reduced price.
It is an established fact that, before Gaddafi brought this revolution to the African people, telephone calls made to Africa and out of Africa were the most expensive in the entire world! Many couldn't make international calls that could last for more than 5 minutes. The bill for such a call was really expensive.
Those were the days when it was only a few wealthy Africans living in Europe and America who could make calls to Africa. It was completely impossible for the ordinary African to make phone calls that could last, because Africa did not have our own communication satellites and we had to rely on using the services of European satellites.
We the African youth will remember Gaddafi, not because he was a saint, but because we know it was him who helped us to be able to fully enjoy the sweetness of the 21st century's unlimited telecommunications services at highly reduced prices. Any time our mobile phones shall ring, anytime we connect to the internet, we will do so with Gaddafi in our minds.
(The writer is a Pan-African analyst and the founder of the Project Pan-Africa (PPA).)
Who were the Muslim helots who overthrew Gaddafi and pursued him in armored cars and trucks to his hometown Sirte deep in the Libyan Desert? That he was killed with such horrible cruelty with bayonets and gunshots pumped into his head is evidence that his assailants could not have been true Muslims!
By committing these very desecrations of the human body, Gaddafi's foes had unwittingly revealed their true un-Islamic natures...
And what were Gaddafi's last words to his assailants when he lay writhing on the ground unable to move because of the pain of his injuries and wounds: WHAT DID I DO TO YOU?
Gaddafi, the desert mystic (bookreview)
There had been a time when Gaddafi had rather poor opinion in the West if he was not outright vilified. All of Kaddafi’s alleged shortcomings get ample treatment by George Tremlett but to begin with chronologically you might see a picture of a precocious youngster from a dessert who through his zeal for education and activism rose to transform Libya from a tribal kingdom to a modern state.
Gaddafi’s biography concerns itself mostly with Gaddafi’s early years and rise to power in Libya he didn‘t voluntarily signed up for. Gaddafi has done everything he could to avoid becoming a leader looking to others for guidance. He had been an activist and a revolutionary in his own right with a lot of followers yet did not consider himself best choice for the top position until later.
“Gaddafi is hardly a wicked man, no evil genius …. He falls into none of the conventional molds into which the West usually enjoys casting its villains. His achievements have been understated, his character distorted, with Britain and America [..] relying too much upon low-level intelligence and poor diplomatic advice.”
I would like a solid definition of what Shariah actually means from the Islamist side. I am willing to bet that if you gathered a representative from every Islamist political party and asked them for their vision and definition of Shariah and what it means in terms of governance and implementation, they would come up with very different answers from each other.
Islamic jurisprudence and schools of thought is a vast field with many contradictory interpretations, hence why there are so many Islamist parties in existence in Egypt today: they all think the others understand or implement Shariah the wrong way. If you think the secular side has problems uniting and unifying, then you should try uniting or unifying the Islamist side. It should be a hilarious experiment. They all think each other are extremists or infidels. ...
The constituent committee tried to side-step that by creating an amendment that states that Al-Azhar’s scholars should be the ones that interpret what Shariah means and how it should be implemented, which brings us to the second reason behind my decision: I do not trust Al-Azhar with that role either.
Al-Azhar scholars can be as corrupt as any other institution in the fantastically corrupt entity referred to as the Egyptian state. ...
I had no problem with keeping the Shariah clause in the constitution before, but it has become increasingly obvious that the Islamist parties won’t just contend with having it there, but will increasingly try to use it to “fix us”, which is something I am totally opposed to.
For weeks now, the mantra among conservatives and right-wingers in the US is that the Obama administration's Middle East policy now consists of kissing the feet of the MB. Even admitting Obama and his advisers do know how to deal with the MB (which is far from given), results of the wackiest kind should be expected.
The MB is in power in Egypt; very well positioned to soon take power in US ally Jordan; now leading the remixed opposition bag in Syria; and totally supported all over by Qatar. On top of it, Hamas is essentially the MB in power in Gaza.
The remixed Syrian opposition council is a joint US-Qatar operation. Obama himself, in his first press conference after being re-elected, said he wanted an opposition "committed to a democratic Syria, an inclusive Syria, a moderate Syria". This is not exactly on the agenda in Doha - not to mention Riyadh.
What would have been Obama's reaction when he learned that Free Syrian Army gangs totally dismiss the new Syrian National Council - whose leader Moaz al-Khatib, by the way, believes Facebook is an evil US/Israeli plot? The gangs have proclaimed they want "a fair Islamic state". Translation; screw Qatar and the US, we want to go the medieval Saudi way.
The announcement by the United Kingdom’s foreign minister William Hague of the UK’s decision to recognize the National Coalition of Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people is a risky move.
The problem is not just that this risky move takes place at a moment when violence in Gaza escalates and the announced truce fails. The problem is that the hasty summary recognition of radical Syrian opposition reflects the main dichotomy of the Western governments’ attitude to the processes taking place in the Middle East.
How long can the West – willingly or unwillingly – help the Moslem Brotherhood in some countries of the region (Syria and Egypt), while opposing it in some others (in Gaza and the West Bank in the first place)?
There is very little doubt that the Moslem Brotherhood is one of the main driving forces behind the anti-Assad rebellion in Syria. ... The Brotherhood was strongly represented in the Syrian National Council, hailed by Western powers since the start of the Syrian uprising and now still given a substantial quota of seats inside the new National Coalition, fully recognized by France and now also by Britain. ...
Meanwhile, the much-maligned Hamas movement on the Palestinian territories was founded in 1987 by Sheik Ahmed Yassin as an “offshoot of the Egyptian Moslem Brotherhood” (a quote from The New York Times). It is more than likely that the activists of the Hamas organization, whom the United States and most of the governments of the EU member states view as a “terrorist group” and on whom they put most of the blame for the bloodshed in Gaza, enjoy full support of their “brothers in faith” in Egypt and Syria. Those same brothers, whom Western powers (Britain and France with even more enthusiasm than the US) help to come to absolute power in their countries.
What is [..] surprising is the fact that the mainstream Western press does not save for those Islamists even a tiny bit of the vitriol that it expends on Russia and China for their skepticism about the pro-rebel foreign intervention in Syria and the “Arab Spring” in general. There is no remorse or modesty and, in fact, very little memory. After all, Moscow warned about the “bloodbath” in Iraq, the “chaos” in Libya and the Islamist presence in Syrian opposition long before the Western mainstream media discovered these things for itself.
The dislocation of the armed Syrian opposition is a reflection of the conflict between the various States which are trying to "change the regime" in Damascus.
We should pay particular attention to the Syrian National Council (SNC), also known as the Istanbul Council, since it was instituted there. This council is guided with an iron hand by the French DGSE (Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure), and financed by Qatar. The Local Coordination Committees (LCC) represent those local civilians who support armed action. Finally, the Free Syrian Army (FSA), which is principally managed by Turkey, unites most of the combatants, including the Al-Qaida brigades. 80% of these units recognise the Takfirist Sheikh Adnan Al-Arour as their spiritual leader. He is based in Saudi Arabia.
Seeking to regain leadership and bring a little order to this cacophony, Washington ordered the Arab League to call a meeting in Doha, sabotaged the SNC, and obliged as many of the tiny groups as possible to integrate a single and exclusive structure – the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces. Behind the scenes, ambassador Robert S. Ford himself allotted the seats and privileges for this assembly, and has imposed as President of the Coalition a personality who has never yet been mentioned in the Press - Sheikh Ahmad Moaz Al-Khatib.
The choice of Sheikh Ahmad Moaz Al-Khatib responds to a clear necessity – in order for the President to be recognised by the combatants, he has to be religious figure, but in order to be accepted by Westerners, he has to appear moderate. ...
US spin doctors quickly gave Sheikh Ahmad Moaz Al-Khatib a make-over, dressing him in a suit but no tie. Some of the media speak of him as a "model" leader: "... a moderate religious figure...", "he belongs to no political party...", "..his background is in Sufi Islam. A religious dignitary, he has studied international relations and diplomacy, and is not linked to the Muslim Brotherhood or any other Islamist organisation in the opposition...", "... a consensual figure who enjoys true popular support on the ground..."
The truth is quite different. In reality, there is absolutely no evidence that Sheikh Ahmad Moaz Al-Khatib ever studied international relations and diplomacy, but he does have training as an engineer in geophysics. He worked for six years for the al-Furat Petroleum Company (1985-91), a joint-venture between the national company and other foreign enterprises, including the Anglo-Dutch Shell, with whom he has maintained contact.
In 1992, he inherited the prestigious charge of preacher at the Omeyyades mosque from his father, Sheikh Mohammed Abu al-Faraj al-Khatib. He was rapidly relieved of his functions and forbidden to preach anywhere in Syria. However, this episode did not occur in 2012, and has nothing to do with the present contestation - it happened twenty years ago, under Hafez el-Assad. At that time, Syria was supporting the international intervention to liberate Kuwait, in respect of international law, in order to get rid of their Iraqi rival, and also to forge closer ties with the West. As for the Sheikh, he was opposed to "Desert Storm"...
Following that, the Sheikh continued his activity as a religious teacher, notably at the Dutch Institute in Damascus. He made numerous trips abroad, mainly to Holland, the United Kingdom and the United State. Finally, he settled in Qatar. In 2003-04, during the attribution of oil and gas concessions, he returned to Syria as a lobbyist for the Shell group.
He came back to Syria again at the beginning of 2012, where he inflamed the neighbourhood of Douma (a suburb of Damascus). He was arrested, then pardoned, and left the country in July to settle in Cairo.
His family is indeed steeped in the Sufi tradition, but contrary to what the AFP claims, he is a member of the Muslim brotherhood, and declared this quite clearly at the end of his speech of investiture at Doha.
FOREIGN MINISTER AMR: I am pleased to be here today representing Egypt post 25th January revolution. I am pleased to have had the opportunity to have this round of talks with you. Egypt and the United States have enjoyed a longtime friendship and partnership. The United States assisted Egypt in many ways in its development and it continues do so, and we are sure that our cooperation and our friendship will only strengthen in the future. Both our countries have worked in the past for peace and stability in the Middle East and beyond, and we will continue to do that.
As you know, Egypt now is in the middle of a transitional period. During this period, we look forward to the solidarity and goodwill of all our partners. It is our expectation that our friends in the United States will demonstrate their commitment, as usual, to this partnership...
I have discussed with the Secretary a number of issues of mutual interest. Of course, bilateral issues were paramount in our discussion, but we also touched upon regional issues. Of course, the Palestinian issue came up, and I think we believe that negotiations should resume as soon as possible between Israelis and Palestinians with clear terms of reference and with a clearly defined timeline. Israeli illegal settlement activities continue to be an impediment in the road for peace, and we would like to see them stop. Our region is going through deep change and delicate times. Egypt and the United States will need to continue to work hand in hand...
Again, I’d like to thank you, Madam Secretary, for your warm reception, kind words, and frank and useful exchange of view. Thank you very much.
SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you so much, Minister.
Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi decided Thursday to significantly strengthen his powers, in particular with regard to the judiciary system. He made these decisions in an announcement justified by the need to "defend the revolution."
"The President may take any decision or measure to protect the revolution", said the spokesman of the presidency, Yasir Ali, reading a "constitutional declaration" on state television. "The constitutional declarations, decisions and laws issued by the President are final and are not subject to appeal" until a new constitution is in place, he added.
These decisions are aimed at "cleansing institutions" and "destroying the infrastructure of the former regime," he added in reference to the regime of President Hosni Mubarak, ousted in February 2011. Morsi asked in this regard "new investigations and judgments" in cases of protesters deaths during the uprising last year, a move which constitutes a threat to some senior military or police officials and maybe Mubarak himself.
Mr. Morsi also decided that no court could dissolve the committee which is drafting the future constitution, a target of much criticism from liberal and secular media and the Coptic Christian church, who claim it is dominated by Islamists.
The composition of the Constitutional Commission is currently subject to appeal before the Supreme Constitutional Court. Morsi has also decided to extend by two months the mandate of this commission.
An opponent to Morsi, Mohamed ElBaradei, former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Nobel Peace Prize winner has immediately accused Morsi of being the "new king."
"Today, Morsi has usurped all power and proclaimed himself the new pharaoh of Egypt. A huge blow to the revolution which could have terrible consequences, "ElBaradei wrote on Twitter.
The Egyptian religious Right (the Muslim Brotherhood) and the secular liberals and leftists had been allies in overthrowing Hosni Mubark in Jan.-Feb. 2011. That alliance frayed once the Brotherhood won the presidency last June, but the rhetoric of unity had continued. Morsi’s high-handed executive orders on Thursday has decisively split the religious and secular wings of the revolution, who now confront one another. Even some figures on the religious right [..] broke with the Brotherhood over these decrees. (Juan Cole 24-11-2012)
"The Quran is our constitution": Brigades & battalions in Aleppo & its countryside under the umbrella of the FSA, Free Syrian Army reject to accept the coalition created by the US and vows to establish an Islamist state.
The Saudi regime has a policy of preservation of a Saudi Nationalist Identity And Culture. This protects the monarchy and its corrupt control of Arabia's resources. In order to preserve it, it adopts policies of elitism, segregation, discrimination. That includes denying citizenship and equal status to non Saudi Muslims who have resided there for generations.
The Wahabi-backed House of Saud took full control of the Hijaz, Mecca and Medina in 1924 and established the modern state of Saudi Arabia, with Wahabism (or Salafism) as its official religion. Thereafter, until the present day, the Saudi regime has promoted Wahabism (Arab purism) - an 18th C. Hanbalite heresy - as normative Islam throughout the Muslim world. The Saudi regime was consolidated on massive oil wealth. From the 1930s until the present day the Saudis have spent vast sums of money building Wahabi mosques, printing Wahabi literature and funding Wahabi institutions world-wide. ...
Wahabi Islam is a fossilized superstition that replaces the spirit of a living religious tradition with the dead hand of literalism motivated, at core, by Arab chauvanism, the deep belief that only Arabs are "true" Muslims and that only Arabs can dictate the norms of religion to the Muslim world. Other related forms of fundamentalism such as that inspired by the Egyptian Sayyid Qutb are extensions of the same ideology.
On Thursday, Morsi issued a new constitutional declaration to expand his powers. The decree opens the way for retrials of officials involved in the clampdown on popular protests that toppled long-standing dictator Hosni Mubarak in early 2011. It also bars courts from challenging Morsi’s decisions.
Press TV has conducted an interview with Dr. Ashraf el-Bayoumi, a university professor and independent analyst from Cairo, to further discuss the issue.
Bayoumi: The Muslim Brotherhood was not born yesterday. I mean, there have been several decades of Muslim Brotherhood. We know their philosophy, their approach and their aims. ...
The Muslim Brotherhood’s main objective is power. In order to achieve the continuation of their power, they have to change the system -- the judiciary system, the university. They have to control the syndicate whether they are worker syndicates or professional syndicates, youth organizations and local governments and so on so that they can ensure the continuation of their power for decades to come.
They are using Islam to attract the attention of the people. However, on the other side, the Egyptian people -- not all of them are fools... Many of them have realized that they were cheated by the Muslim Brotherhood. That’s why the popularity of the Muslim Brotherhood, of President Morsi has declined in record time.
Press TV: Tell us more, if you can, even within the Brotherhood it is said that there are some members that are against what Mr. Mohamed Morsi has decided.
Bayoumi: Let’s go back to the Muslim Brotherhood. ... You have to analyze that particular organization, what they stand for. The relation of the Muslim Brotherhood’s approach in economy is free enterprise. Their dependency on the United States and many events has shown how they are puppets to the United States.
The direction of Mr. Morsi is the issue, not what he has achieved or not achieved. The direction itself is consistent with the philosophy of the Muslim Brotherhood. ...
Here I must blame some of the so-called intellectuals of Egypt who changed their position back and forth. There are people who supported Mr. Morsi and now they are opposing him. This opportunistic approach, people know it very well and they don’t respect those leaders who change their opinion according to the whims and so on. No.
We have to challenge, very strongly challenge the rule of Mr. Morsi and his decrees. Don’t be fooled by some aspect of the decree that we support like the retrials and so on.
That’s why we have brains. That’s why some people call us intellectuals. We should read. We should analyze and we should avoid being opportunistic.
FSA Demonstration in Syria Calls for
Establishment of Islamic State
& Extermination of Alawites
gepubliceerd op 25 nov 2012 door Eretz Zen
"We don't need any external initiatives
Nor any pagan national councils
In spite of them, we shall establish an Islamic state
Whose constitution is the Quran and the Sunnah
Come on, men of proud Binnish
Let's purify our Levant from the filth of Alawites
Victory is coming with the help of the Lord of creation
We are certain of the Islamic Caliphate [establishment]"
These are the people that the West claims represent the "future of Syria" and "freedom fighters". They not only outright reject any Western-backed "national council" as pagan, but consider that establishment of an Islamic state in Syria is a task that they must carry out no matter what.
As taxpayer money used by Western governments is funneled to arm and provide assistance to these people, the moderates, secularists, and progressives all across Syria are being killed and targeted with Western taxpayer money.
DAMASCUS COUNTRYSIDE, (SANA)- Terrorists on Wednesday blew up two car bombs loaded with large amounts of explosives in the Main Square in Jaramana city in Damascus Countryside, killing a number of citizens and injuring others and causing huge material damage to the residential buildings and shops. SANA reporter said the two terrorist bombings coincided with the detonation of two explosive devices by terrorists in al-Nahda and al-Qerayyat neighborhoods in the city. The explosive device blasts resulted in minor material damage.
Liberals, leftists, nationalists, Muslims, Christians, trade unions, professionals, movie stars, lawyers and judges united on Tuesday throughout Egypt to deploy a whole range of protest techniques against last Thursday’s Executive Order of President Muhammad Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, which put him above all judicial authority. ..
The crowd at the downtown Tahrir Square was estimated by some newspapers at 200,000, among the largest demonstrations held since the fall of Hosni Mubarak in February, 2011. It is worrisome that many in the crowd have started to demand ‘the fall of the regime’ and the ‘departure of Morsi.’ Since he is an elected leader, it would be undemocratic for him to be unseated by crowd action...
Among the demands of the protesters was that the Constituent Assembly writing the constitution be reconstituted. It had begun with 100 members, but 22 have withdrawn, along with 7 reserve members, and the remaining 78 are disproportionately loyal to the Muslim Brotherhood, raising fears that the constitution will be overly religious in character.
Morsi’s claim of extra-judicial power struck many Egyptians as a creeping dictatorship, and there are fears that the Brotherhood was plotting to bring back the dissolved parliament of fall, 2011, which was dominated by members of the Brotherhood party, Freedom and Justice, and by hard line Salafi fundamentalists. With the presidency and parliament and an established principle that both were beyond the authority of the judiciary, the Brotherhood could hope to rule Egypt as a virtual one-party state, succeeding the one-party dominance of Hosni Mubarak’s National Democratic party.
NEW YORK, (SANA)- Syria's Permanent Representative to the UN, Bashar al-Jaafari, said that what is taking place today in Syria is considered a regrettable precedent that endangers the future of the international collective action in the field of promoting and protecting human rights.
Al-Jaafari was speaking during a session of the UN General Assembly's Third Committee discussing a draft resolution on Syria in the framework of item 69 of the agenda titled 'The Promotion and Protection of Human Rights'.
He slammed the stances of some member states of the Arab League (AL) as they accepted to be used as the 'Horse of Troy' by the western group through submitting in their name a draft resolution claiming care for human rights in Syria...
Al-Jaafari underscored that the Syrian people want to build a society where justice and equality prevail, away from the foreign interference of some countries such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia which know nothing of human rights.
He highlighted how the rule in these two countries is monopolized by one family and how they lack the simplest rights of equality between genders and between the citizens and the non-citizens, in addition to the absence of parliament and the smothering of the opposition by the authorities of the two countries.
Al-Jaafari also referred to the fact that Qatar and the Saudi Arabia are not yet part of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which has become an international reference since 1976, nor are they part of many international agreements related to the issues of the promotion and protection of human rights, whereas Syria has joined the Covenant since 1969...
He expressed great astonishment over justifying the crime and massacres committed by the armed terrorist groups against the Syrian people in the statement of the countries which submitted the draft resolution as "a few separate violations".
He added: "Does this mean that there is a legitimate terrorism that is represented by the acts of the armed terrorist groups holding wahhabi, takfiri and salafi thinking…"
The Syrian Ambassador exposed the flagrant political hypocrisy of some countries in terms of adopting a Security Council resolution condemning the acts of the takfiri and 'jihadi' trends in Mali, while rushing to provide funds to send similar takfiri, wahhabi and 'jihadi' groups to practice terrorism in Syria.
October 2012: French news magazine Marianne published a story claiming that Islamists were "training both in the north and the south of Tunisia in preparation for holy war and readying themselves to go to Syria and Mali".
The international community, fearful the zone could become a new haven for terrorists possible seeking to launch attacks both in Africa and Europe, is backing regional efforts to intervene militarily.
At an emergency summit earlier this month, west African leaders approved a 3,300-strong military force to reclaim northern Mali. The plan must go before the UN Security Council by the end of the month.
|"France is suffering under democracy"
Aleppo 2012: "What the infidel regime has done is to preach atheism instead of faith and religion.[..] It presented Bashar the atheist as a sympathetic doctor... but that is not true and the rise of atheism has fought against moslims and since the start of these troubles he has declared a war against moslims..."
Watch at YOUTUBE-site
"In the name of God, clement and merciful.
The troubles which are disturbing our Islamic nation should not surprise us. It is facing the dilemnas and trials which surround us on all sides. Each night is darker than the one which came before it. We live in critical times. The moment is difficult. We watch as some of our brothers walk blindly in the shadows. It seems that they are hurrying towards their own misery, falling thoughtlessly to their knees before the West, running towards the vacuum, convinced that the infidels’ way of life is the summit of culture, that their morals are the foundation of development, and their ideas the source of light, without the slightest study or research. Sharia and the facts show that this point of view is illegitimate and impure...."
The outsider is the seminal work on alienation, creativity and the modern mind-set. First published over thirty years ago, it made its youthful author England's most controversial intellectual.
The Outsider is an individual engaged in an intense self-exploration - a person who lives at the edge, challenges cultural values, and "stands for Truth."
Born into a world without perspective, where others simply drift through life, the Outsider creates his own set of rules and lives them in an unsympathetic environment. Wilson illuminates the struggle of those who seek only the transformation of Self but also the transformation of society as a whole. The book is essential for everyone who share's Wilson's conviction that "a new religion is needed." (Source)
For the bourgeois, the world is fundamentally an orderly place, with a disturbing element of the irrational, the terrifying, which his preoccupation with the present usually permits him to ignore.
For the Outsider, the world is not rational, not orderly. When he asserts his sense of anarchy in the face of the bourgeois' complacent acceptance, it is not simply the need to cock a snook at respectability that provokes him; it is a distressing sense that the truth must be told at all costs, otherwise there can be no hope for an ultimate restoration of order. Even if there seems no room for hope, truth must be told. ...
"All men should possess a 'visionary faculty'. Men do not, because they live wrongly. They live too tensely, under too much strain, 'getting and spending'. … The visionary faculty comes naturally to all men. When they are relaxed enough, every leaf of every tree in the world, every speck of dust, is a separate world capable of producing infinite pleasure. If these fail to do so, it is man's own fault for wasting his time and energy on trivialities.
The ideal is the contemplative poet, the 'sage', who cares about having only enough money and food to keep him alive, and never takes thought for the morrow."
"You recognise something inside yourself changing and that you can actually do things with focused concentration that you could never do before. It's a fascinating business to suddenly realise that it's the mind itself that is the answer to all of these problems."
"Here was I saying, in The Outsider: 'Look, you've got to stop being self-pitying, somehow you Outsiders have got to stop being the miserable Outsiders saying you don't want anything to do with this lousy material world, because if you don't do something about this lousy material world, nobody else will. You yourselves have got to take over and become the leaders'. And this was what I was basically saying in The Outsider."
Hundreds of thousands of people waving Egyptian flags and hoisting large pictures of the president are demonstrating across Egypt today in support of him and Islamic law.
The rally, organized by the Muslim Brotherhood, is seen as a test of strength for Islamists seeking to counteract large opposition protests held this past week. The Islamists argue that the liberals, who are still laboring to create a cohesive opposition nearly two years after the uprising that ousted longtime leader Hosni Mubarak, do not represent the vast majority of Egyptians.
The Brotherhood and harder-line Islamists won nearly 75% of the seats in last winter's parliamentary election. But liberals highlight the fact that President Mohammed Morsi, a member of the Brotherhood's political party, won only 25% of votes in the first round of presidential elections. He went on to win the runoff by just over 50%, after a divisive race against a former regime figure.
Among supporters of the rally, which also calls for Islamic law, are the Gamaa Islamaiyya – a fundamentalist group that fought an insurrection against the government in the 1990s – and the Salafi Nour Party, seen as more conservative than the Brotherhood.
Michel Suleiman (president of Lebanon) repeated on Saturday his call on political powers to return to the national dialogue. He also demanded the adoption of a “modern parliamentary electoral law that reflects the spirit of the constitution.”
“We will not allow the constitution to be harmed and we will work hard to hold the parliamentary elections on time,” he stressed before the crowd.
Suleiman lamented the current political state in Lebanon that “has marginalized every noble political act and the role of the youths.”
“The Lebanese are divided behind their leaders,” he noted. Narrow-mindedness is the greatest crime that can be committed against man, he declared.
Addressing the youths, he said: “Don't sacrifice yourselves and Lebanon for the sake of others.” “Time will not remain our ally forever. We must rise above personal interests and return to dialogue.”
The draft constitution was handed over in a ceremony on Saturday to President Muhammad Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, and he in turn immediately scheduled it for a national referendum on December 15. ...
The composition of the Constituent Assembly was controversial. It was appointed by a parliament that was itself dissolved by the courts for electoral irregularities, and those irregularities contributed to a dominance of the Muslim Brotherhood and hard line Salafi fundamentalists. ...
The resulting constitution is a strange hybrid of the current French constitution and more Islamically-tinged constitutions such as those of Iraq and Afghanistan, where the US brought fundamentalist movements to power but attempted to moderate the constitutional text.
Sheik of Al-Azhar Ahmad Al-Tayyeb:
Religious restrictions on what can be said publicly can be used to suppress science. Relatively few high-powered scientific articles are produced in Egypt that get cited by other scholars, and few patents are achieved. Things won’t get better if Salafis can go around accusing scientists of disrespecting the Prophet by contradicting some saying of his that they interpret literally.
Al-Azhar University is an educational institute in Cairo, Egypt. Founded in 970 or 972 as a madrasa, it is the chief centre of Arabic literature and Islamic learning in the world. It is associated with Al-Azhar Mosque in Islamic Cairo.
The university's mission includes the propagation of Islamic religion and culture. To this end, its Islamic scholars (ulamas) render edicts (fatwas) on disputes submitted to them from all over the Sunni Islamic world regarding proper conduct for Muslim individuals and societies. Al-Azhar also trains Egyptian government-appointed preachers in proselytization (da'wa).
In 1961, Al-Azhar was established as a university under the government of Egypt's second President Gamal Abdel Nasser when a wide range of secular faculties were added for the first time, such as business, economics, science, pharmacy, medicine, engineering and agriculture.
"In a New Aggressive Act against Syrian Media, US Company Ceases Hosting of SANA Website. This act prevented readers from surfing SANA's website abroad temporarily in light of inability to surf the internet in Syria from the outside currently. SANA stresses that work is in progress to provide another hosting in one of the friendly countries." (SANA Facebook Info)
"Whoever among them is able to shoot him with a bullet and to free us from his evil, to free Libya and its great people from the evil of this man and from the danger of him, let him do so!" Sheikk Yusuf Qaradawi - fatwa against Muammar Gaddafi
- Qatar, providing financial aids for Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, and particularly through Sheykh Yusuf Qardawi, Egyptian cleric residing in Qatar and a former member of Muslim Brotherhood, has claimed an important place for itself.
Sheikh Hamad Al Thani, the ruling Emir of the State of Qatar, is said to have invested a sum of $ 18 billion in Egypt supporting its banks with an amount of two billion dollars to aid its national currency besides the money he has specialized for the President to spend based on his own decisions.
- Turkey also, due to the organizational relations between Justice and Development Party (JDP), founded in 2001, and Muslim Brotherhood, has an important stance for Muslim Brotherhood. This is while Turkey has recently decided to finance Egypt with an amount of two billion dollars aid.
Therefore at the moment the triangle of Egypt, Turkey and Qatar practically make the nucleus of a new axis in the region which on the one hand has its ties with the US through Qatar and Turkey and on the other hand it maintains its relations with some Arab governments like Tunisia and Maghreb as well as the political parties in other Arab countries.
It means that it is not the American Islam which tries to influence the region but a revolutionary Islam with Brotherhood features. This type of Islam tries not only to reduce its differences with the US but also tries to find common interests out of which one might be hindering the growth of resistance and also the role of Iran in the region!
In other words the US might approve the empowerment of Muslim Brotherhood governments in some Arab countries instead of recognition of the US interests in the region.
But what happens to the disagreements of Muslim Brotherhood with the Zionist regime? Although Muslim Brotherhood stresses its opposition and confrontation with the Zionist regime and counts defending the Palestinians as its principle, it does not believe in prioritization of the issue.
[The Muslim Brotherhood] prioritizes strengthening the foundations of Brotherhood across the Arab world...
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has called for a “two-way dialogue” between the government of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi and his opponents amid escalating political tensions in the North African country.
"The upheaval we are seeing now once again in the streets of Cairo and other cities indicates that dialogue is urgently needed," said Clinton at the end of a NATO foreign ministers meeting in Brussels on Wednesday.
Thousands of people have staged massive demonstrations in Cairo and a number of other Egyptian cities since Morsi signed a controversial decree on November 22, allowing him to “issue any decision or law that is final and not subject to appeal.”
"We call on all stake-holders in Egypt to settle their differences through democratic dialogue. And we call on Egypt's leaders to ensure that the outcome protects the democratic promise of the revolution for all of Egypt's citizens."
"Not one side talking at another side, but actual respectful exchanges of views and concerns among Egyptians themselves about the constitutional process and the substance of the constitution," she added.
China has once again slammed NATO decision to deploy Patriot missiles along Turkey's border with Syria, saying the move is “inconducive to peace and stability in the region.”
“Highlighting military factors and strengthening military existence are inconducive to the resolution of conflicts and disputes, and inconducive to the peace, stability and development in the whole region," Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hong Lei said in a press conference, on Wednesday.
"We have noticed the situation. China has always insisted on political resolution of tensions in [the] Syria issue through dialogue and consultation,” he added.
WASHINGTON - The US State Department said on Tuesday that Deputy Secretary of State William Burns met with UN-Arab League Joint Special Representative for Syria Lakhdar Brahimi and discussed with him the current situation in Syria in Washington.
The two noted the "deteriorating security and humanitarian conditions in Syria and the threat to regional security from Syria's continued instability," it added.
Brahimi on Friday urged the UN Security Council to act to save Syria from becoming a failed state. In a briefing to the UN General Assembly on the prolonged Syria crisis, Brahimi said that despite previous difficulties of the 15-member council to reach a resolution on the crisis, "I nevertheless feel that it is here and only here that a credible, implementable process can be put together."
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says he intends on pressing forward with a statehood bid at the United Nations next week. He has turned down requests from the US, Britain, Germany and France to delay the bid. Abbas will formally request that the UN General Assembly upgrade the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) status from observer to nonmember state on November 29. The Assembly will be asked to vote on the measure. The PA said it expects the Assembly to vote two-thirds in favor of granting the PA nonmember status.
“There is nothing that stops us from obtaining the status of non-member observer…we are sure that the countries of the free world will support us,” Abbas said in a statement [..] on Sunday.
Earlier Sunday, Abbas made it clear that the UN was not the last stop – but rather just the beginning – of his plan. He said the move would be followed by steps to bridge the political divide between his Fateh movement and rival Hamas. "Today, the UN. After that, reconciliation, and after that, our own state," he said.
Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said earlier this week that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Abbas that Palestinians “would destroy themselves politically” by pressing forward with the bid.
Last year, the US used its veto power to block a similar Palestinian statehood bid at the UN Security Council. However, no country has veto power in the General Assembly.
Erekat has accused Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of undermining the PA in order to maintain control of the West Bank, while trying to push Gaza politically closer to Egypt. ...
Israel has called on Palestine to resume negotiations instead of turning to the UN, but the PA does not intend on granting the request.
“What you need to stop is not the Palestinian efforts at the UN, what you need to stop are these settlement activities that are destroying and undermining the possibility of a two-state solution,” Erekat said in a statement.
Israel stepped up settlement construction and withheld funds to the Palestinian government last year. The US withheld funds as well, and has threatened to do so again if Abbas goes through with his plan.
* The Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria and Gaza are the realization of Zionist values. Settlement of the land is a clear expression of the unassailable right of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel and constitutes an important asset in the defense of the vital interests of the State of Israel. The Likud will continue to strengthen and develop these communities and will prevent their uprooting."
* Jerusalem is the eternal, united capital of the State of Israel and only of Israel. The government will flatly reject Palestinian proposals to divide Jerusalem, including the plan to divide the city presented to the Knesset by the Arab factions and supported by many members of Labor and Meretz.
* A unilateral Palestinian declaration of the establishment of a Palestinian state will constitute a fundamental and substantive violation of the agreements with the State of Israel and the scuttling of the Oslo and Wye accords. The government will adopt immediate stringent measures in the event of such a declaration.
* The Government of Israel flatly rejects the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state west of the Jordan river. The Palestinians can run their lives freely in the framework of self-rule, but not as an independent and sovereign state. Thus, for example, in matters of foreign affairs, security, immigration and ecology, their activity shall be limited in accordance with imperatives of Israel’s existence, security and national needs.
In modern colonialist Israel, archaeology plays an important role in affirming the claimed links between the intrusive European colonialists and ‘ancient tribes’ that lived in Palestine two thousand years ago. Linking the ancient past and the political present plays a crucial role to any claim by the Israelis to possess the land and effectively silence any attempt to provide the history of the indigenous Palestinians.
The history of ‘Ancient Israel’ is based on the myth of the Hebrew biblical narrative which is nothing but unverifiable stories about ‘god and prophets’, a ‘chosen people’ and a ‘promised land’. It uses historical fiction to express ideological beliefs.
The Israeli biblical studies has focused on inventing Israel’s ‘ancient entity’ while ignoring everything else of Palestine’s rich history in order to justify and legitimize Israel’s imperial ambitions. The only subject of biblical study became the history of ‘Ancient Israel.’
Even in the West, the history of ‘ancient Israel’ has been a major part of the education in the schools of theology. ... It has denied time and reality to the civilization of the indigenous Palestinian population who lived on the land...
The Palestinians will continue to exercise their natural rights, fighting land usurpation and oppression by the Israeli colonialists with all means until they achieve justice according to international laws.
John Locke, the theorist of the 1688 English Revolution and the 1776 American Revolution wrote in his Second Treatment of Government: “...so that [they will not] think that all government in the world is the product only of force and violence, and that men live together by no other rules but that of beasts, where the strongest carries it, and so lay a foundation for perpetual disorder and mischief, tumult, sedition and rebellion.."
President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority, speaking to the United Nations General Assembly before the vote, called the moment a “last chance” to save the two-state solution and said that the window of opportunity was narrowing.
“The General Assembly is called upon today to issue a birth certificate of the reality of the State of Palestine,” he said just before the vote was scheduled to take place.
Mr. Abbas directed harsh criticism toward Israel, saying that the “aggression against our people in the Gaza Strip has confirmed once again the urgent and pressing need to end the Israeli occupation and for our people to gain their freedom and independence.”
“This aggression also confirms the Israeli Government’s adherence to the policy of occupation, brute force and war, which in turn obliges the international community to shoulder its responsibilities toward the Palestinian people and toward peace,” Mr. Abbas said early in his speech.
“We have not heard one word from any Israeli official expressing any sincere concern to save the peace process,” Mr. Abbas said.
“On the contrary, our people have witnessed, and continue to witness, an unprecedented intensification of military assaults, the blockade, settlement activities and ethnic cleansing, particularly in Occupied East Jerusalem, and mass arrests, attacks by settlers and other practices by which this Israeli occupation is becoming synonymous with an apartheid system of colonial occupation, which institutionalizes the plague of racism and entrenches hatred and incitement.”
“The moment has arrived for the world to say clearly: Enough of aggression, settlements and occupation,” he said.
The vote is taking place exactly 65 years after the General Assembly voted to divide the former British Mandate of Palestine into two states, one Jewish and the other Arab — a vote that Israel considers the international seal of approval for its birth.
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The United Nations voted overwhelmingly Thursday to recognize a Palestinian state, a long-sought victory for the Palestinians but an embarrassing diplomatic defeat for the United States.
The resolution upgrading the Palestinians' status to a nonmember observer state at the United Nations was approved by a more than two-thirds majority of the 193-member world body — 138 in favour to 9 against (Canada, Czech Republic, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Nauru, Panama, Palau, United States) - with 41 abstentions.
A Palestinian flag was quickly unfurled on the floor of the General Assembly, behind the Palestinian delegation.
The United States immediately criticized the historic vote. "Today's unfortunate and counterproductive resolution places further obstacles in the path peace," U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice said.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the speech by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to the General Assembly shortly before the vote "defamatory and venomous," saying it was "full of mendacious propaganda" against Israel.
According to Tzipi Livni, who announced Tuesday that she will run in the upcoming Knesset elections at the helm of a new party, “The Movement,” the Israeli government could have avoided the Palestinians’ UN bid for nonmember observer state status had Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s administration been willing to engage in direct negotiations with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
Speaking to Israel Radio [..] the former Kadima chief and ex-foreign minister called the unilateral step taken by the Palestinians a “strategic attack.”
Based on the UN vote, Livni said, the Palestinians can now sue Israel at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, and “they received recognition as a state with borders and Jerusalem as its capital without conducting negotiations, and with no representation of the Israeli position.”
Meretz chief Zahava Gal-On said Friday that a Palestinian state is in Israel’s interest, and that Jerusalem should have supported Abbas’s UN bid.
Gal-On told Israel Radio that the upgrade to nonmember observer state status signals to the Israeli government that it must now enter into negotiations with the Palestinians.
She added that countries around the world “did not buy the bluff” that the Israeli government is striving for peace. Gal-On said that with the UN vote Thursday, Israel’s rejectionist foreign policy had received “a resounding slap in the face.”
Less than 24 hours after the UN voted in favor of granting the Palestinian Authority non-member observer state status, Israel announced that it was approving the construction of 3,000 new housing units in Jerusalem and the West Bank.
A Jerusalem official said that Israel would also advance planning of additional housing units that have already been approved for construction in the area dividing Jerusalem from the settlement of Maaleh Adumim, the controversial strip of land known as E1. The construction will create geographical continuity between the capital and its northern suburb, a move that the US and European countries have warned against.
“The continued building is in accordance with Israel’s strategic interests map,” said the official, adding that “Israel is considering additional measures.”
As the Palestinians celebrated the United Nations General Assembly's decision to upgrade the Palestinian Authority's status, President Mahmoud Abbas said that the resolution will require the world hold Israel accountable for the infractions it has committed since 1967.
The Palestinian leader told reporters in New York on Friday evening that the General Assembly's decision has turned "Palestine into a state under an occupation, and most of the world's countries think so as well, voiding the Israeli claim that this is a disputed territory."
He called for the resumption of the peace talks with Israel, but also chided the Jewish state's latest settlement construction plans.
"I've said a thousand times that we want to resume negotiations and we are ready to do it," Abbas told the Palestinian reporters.
"We are not setting any conditions but there are at least 15 UN resolutions which consider settlement activity as illegal and an obstacle to peace which must be removed," he said. "Why don't (the Israelis) stop settlement?"
He stipulated that if Israel withdraws to the 1967 lines, allows the Palestinians to establish a state with Jerusalem as its capital and offers a fair solution to the refugee problem, the PA will guarantee that 57 Arab states will recognize Israel and solve its "isolation problem."
Mahmoud Abbas hailed the outcome of the UN vote as an “historic achievement,” adding that November 29 has become a “decisive turning point in our national struggle.”
Noting that more than 75 percent of UN members had voted in favor of the statehood bid, the PA president said that most of the countries that had abstained congratulated the Palestinians on their achievement. “The message to us is very clear,” he said. “We are not alone. ..
Abbas said he decided to go to the UN despite pressure and warnings from several parties. “They told us that if we go the world would explode,” he added. “They asked us to postpone the move. Finally, they told us to change our policy and project. But we remained steadfast and triumphed because the world heard the voices of our people.”
Abbas said he was presenting the UN “victory” as a gift to the the “soul of the late leader Yasser Arafat.” He said that the Palestinians would continue to march in the footsteps of Arafat.
Abbas said the Palestinians would continue their struggle until the Palestinian flag is raised over the walls of Jerusalem’s Old City and churches. He said that Jerusalem was the “eternal capital of the State of Palestine.”
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon learned “with grave concern and disappointment” of Israel's announcement of 3,000 new settlement units in East Jerusalem and other parts of the West Bank, according to his spokesperson today.
“This would include reported planning in the so-called E-1 envelope, which risks completely cutting off East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank,” the spokesperson added in a statement.
“Settlements are illegal under international law and,” the spokesperson noted. “Should the E-1 settlement be constructed, it would represent an almost fatal blow to remaining chances of securing a two-State solution.”
Announced by Israeli authorities on Friday, construction in E1 – a West Bank territory that Israel captured in 1967 – would connect a large Jewish settlement to Jerusalem, according to media reports. However, the move would also reportedly divide the West Bank in two, rendering a viable, contiguous and sovereign Palestinian State impossible to achieve in accordance with the two-State solution contained in the internationally approved plan that seeks to resolve the issue on the basis of two States, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and within secure borders.