Saddam's Death, 75 (august 2016)
attempt to destroy political holism in the middle east

See also: Page 74: july-august 2016 and Page 76: august-sept 2016
and Israel & The Temple Revolution
Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was born April 28, 1937 and died December 30, 2006. He was the fifth President of Iraq, holding that position from July 16, 1979 until 9 April 2003. He was one of the leading members of the revolutionary Arab Socialist Ba’ath Party, and afterward, the Baghdad-based Ba’ath Party and its regional organization Ba’ath Party, Iraq Region, which advocated ba’athism, an ideological marriage of Arab nationalism with Arab socialism. (Patricia Ramos, july 2013)

"The national security of America and the security of the world could be attained if the American leaders [..] become rational, if America disengages itself from its evil alliance with Zionism, which has been scheming to exploit the world and plunge it in blood and darkness, by using America and some Western countries.
What the American peoples need mostly is someone who tells them the truth, courageously and honestly as it is.
They don’t need fanfares and cheerleaders, if they want to take a lesson from the (sept. 11) event so as to reach a real awakening, in spite of the enormity of the event that hit America.
But the world, including the rulers of America, should say all this to the American peoples, so as to have the courage to tell the truth and act according to what is right and not what to is wrong and unjust, to undertake their responsibilities in fairness and justice, and by recourse to reason..."

Saddam Hussein, INA 15-9-2002

"A lot of rulers today still view principled people as a burden to them"

"A lot of rulers today still view principled people, who persist in defending their noble and just causes and who refuse to compromise at the expense of their peoples, their nations, the honour of their cause, their integrity and their principles, as a burden on them.
The policy of the United States still finds in this kind of genuine, honest and loyal people an obstacle before their evil and futile ambitions towards the world and humanity at large..." Saddam Hoessein, Oath and Speech, INA 17-10-2002

Page Index

“All mankind is from Adam and Eve. An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety and good action.
Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Nothing shall be legitimate to a Muslim which belongs to a fellow Muslim unless it was given freely and willingly.
“Do not therefore do injustice to yourselves. Remember one day you will meet Allah and answer your deeds. So beware, do not astray from the path of righteousness after I am gone." Prophet Muhammad, Last Sermon

"Having principles is necessary in any talks, as they constitute a reference for the process of negotiating..." "Since the beginning of Geneva 3 talks, the delegation of the Syrian Arab Republic proposed a paper of principles that forms a basis for the talks. [...] There have been no real talks until this moment and the paper of principles has not been answered to.." Bashar al-Assad, speech 6-6-2016

"The West creates enemies; in the past it was the communism then it became Islam, and then it became Saddam Hussein for a different reason. Now, they want to create a new enemy represented by Bashar. That's why they say that the problem is the president so he has to leave. That is why we have to focus of the real problem, not to waste our time listening to what they say." (Bashar al-Assad, 9-11-2012)

"Syria is the heart of the Middle East. Everybody knows that. If the Middle East is sick, the whole world will be unstable. In 1991, when we started the peace process, we had a lot of hope. Now, after over 20 years, things are not at square one; they’re much below that square.

So the policy should be to help peace in the region, to fight terrorism, to promote secularism, to support this area economically, to help upgrade the mind and society like you did in your country. That is the supposed mission of the United States, not to launch wars. Launching war doesn’t make you a great power." (Bashar Al-Assad, 26-1-2015)

President Bashar, 'Le Figaro' interview 3-9-2013:

"How can the parliamentarians convince the French public that their country is secular, yet at the same time it supports extremism and sectarianism in other parts of the world? How can France advocate for democracy but yet one of its closest allies – Saudi Arabia – is still living in medieval times?"
"My message to the French Parliamentarians is: go back to the principles of the French Revolution that the whole world is proud of: Liberty, Justice, Equality."

“Human beings are members of a whole,
In creation of one essence and soul.
If one member is afflicted with pain,
Other members uneasy will remain.
If you have no sympathy for human pain,
The name of human you can not retain.”

Saadi Shirazi
(Persian poet & humanist, born in Shiraz, Iran, c. 1210)

"The majority of people who imitate philosophers confuse the true with the false, and they do nothing but deceive and pretend knowledge, and they do not use what they know of the sciences except for base and material purposes...
And if they see a certain person seeking for the right and preferring the truth, doing his best to refute the false and untrue and leaving aside hypocrisy and deceit, they make a fool of him and mock him."

Omar Khayyam, 18-5-1048, Nishapur - Persia

Omar has often been called the 'Voltaire of the East', and cried down as materialist and atheist. As far as purity of diction, fine wit, crushing satire against a debased and ignorant clergy, and a general sympathy with suffering humanity are concerned, ‘Omar certainly reminds us of the great Frenchman; but there the comparison ceases. Voltaire never wrote anything equal to ‘Omar’s fascinating rhapsodies in praise of wine, love and all earthly joys, and his passionate denunciations of a malevolent and inexorable. (Klik voor bron)

About political holism

Political holism is based on the recognition that "we" are all members of a single whole. There's no "they," even though "we" are not all alike. Because "we" are all part of the whole, and therefore interdependent, we benefit from cooperating with each other. Political holism is a way of thinking about human cultures and nations as interdependent.
Political holists search for solutions other than war to settle international disagreements. Their model of the world is one in which cooperation and negotiation, even with the enemy, even with the weak, promotes political stability more than warfare.
In an overpopulated world with planet-wide environmental problems, the development of weapons of mass destruction has rendered war obsolete as an effective means to resolve disputes.

Political dualists consider political holists unpatriotic for questioning the necessity to defeat "them." In times of impending war, political dualists tend to measure patriotism by the intensity of one's hostility to the country's immediate enemy.
Naturally, they would view as disloyalty any suggestion that the enemy is not evil, any call for cooperation with the enemy, any criticism of one's own country.
To political dualists, cooperation with the enemy means capitulation, relinquishment of the nation's position of dominance.

At its extreme, political dualism is essentially tribalism. (Betty Craige, 16-8-1997)

Clintonites in Democratic Party Back Settler Colonialism
By Juan Cole | Jul. 10, 2016

The Clinton loyalists debating the Democratic Party platform have defeated an amendment that would have called for an end to the Israeli Occupation of Palestine and condemned Israeli squatter settlements illegal. The Democratic Party, in other words, backs the principle of colonialism.

The Israeli occupation of Palestine (the West Bank and the Gaza Strip) grew out of the 1967 Six-Day war, and wartime occupations are a recognized legal category. However, the Israeli government has not abided by the most basic provisions of the Geneva Conventions of 1949..
The Israeli establishment is openly contemptuous of the Geneva Conventions, which were passed to forestall the recurrence of the abuses and atrocities committed by the Axis powers during World War II.
One of the actions forbidden to the occupying power is to alter the status of the occupied population. Most important, Art. 49 says, “The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.”
So the hundreds of thousands of Israeli squatters on Palestinian land are engaged in an illegal act, an act which is aided and abetted by the Israeli government and by the government of the United States.
This is no longer a legal occupation. It has evolved into a permanent colonial Apartheid society, with the Palestinians left stateless and without basic human rights and ruled or besieged by the Israeli military.
If the Democratic Party can’t even just state that the Israeli squatter settlements are illegal, which is what the US signed on to when it ratified the Geneva Conventions, then it should change its name to the Colonial Party.

Hanan Ashrawi & International Law
Palestine Chronicle, July 7, 2016

Exclusivity & Polarisation

"The world is still paying for the mistakes of the post WW II and the cold war era with all its “-isms” and “the end justifies the means” approach.

Instead of the promise of an inclusive, interactive, and integrated global approach to human development and conflict resolution, the new ideology is threatening to impose an artificial construct of exclusivity and polarization, not only as a parallel to the past paradigm, but also as a source of tremendous injustice and conflict." (read more here)
PLO Executive Member, Hanan Ashrawi, denounced Israel’s plan to expand three illegal Israeli settlements around the Jerusalem area. The aim is to build hundreds of residential units to accommodate more Israeli settlers...
Ashrawi said the Israeli government is bent on destroying the viability, integrity and territorial contiguity of a future Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital simply. It aims to isolate Jerusalem from its Palestinian environs and ethnically cleanse the occupied city of its indigenous population.
Ashrawi added, “The continued theft of Palestinian land and the increase in settlements constitute serious and grave threats to security and stability within the region and beyond”. She further condemned the use of collective punishment against around Palestinians in the Hebron area.

The expansion plans come two days following the release of the Middle East Quartet’s report, which flagrantly accommodates Israel’s demands and violations, equates a vulnerable people under a brutal military occupation with a ruthless occupier and falls below the minimum requirements for peace, according to Ashrawi.

“We call on all members of the international community to uphold their moral, legal and political responsibilities and to hold Israel to account for its blatant violations of international law and consensus”.

The United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights can be read as assuming a kind of moral universalism.
Moral universalism (also called moral objectivism or universal morality) is the meta-ethical position that some system of ethics, or a universal ethic, applies universally, that is, for "all similarly situated individuals", regardless of culture, race, sex, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, or any other distinguishing feature.

Moral universalism is opposed to moral nihilism ('nothing is morally wrong'), moral relativism ('there are no universal moral values') and moral exceptionalism ('people claiming absolute truth, absolute goodness, etc..')

Not a one state- nor a two state-solution..., just a Jewish State...
and a lot of Palestinian getto's, populated with stateless people
Interview with Trump's Israel advisor, a Jew who 'truly loves Israel'
YNet News, 4-8-2016

Q: Who is David Friedman, and why has Mr. Trump made you the gate keeper on policies relative to Israel?
A: "Well, first and foremost I'm somebody who loves Israel and someone who has Donald Trump's trust. We've known each other for 15 years. I've worked with him in some challenging circumstances and have gained his trust and I would hope his respect. When he was called upon to select advisers in various areas, one of those areas was the relationship between the US and Israel and he (Trump) wanted to select advisers who he knew had a deep love and commitment to the state of Israel."

A: "His position is not a one-state solution. His position is that he's observed the obvious, which is that a two-state solution over the past generation has been attempted over and over again and has been a failure.
The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again expecting a different result—and he's not insane. To blindly embrace a two-state solution because it's been an American policy for the past 25 years is not something he's going to do..."

Q: Hillary Clinton has just about everyone suggesting she is the most qualified person ever to be president. Where did she go wrong with the Middle East—if she did?
A: "I don't think she has made a right decision. I think she said some helpful things when she was the senator from New York when she had a Jewish constituency. As soon as she became secretary of state, the first thing she did was to embrace a unilateral settlement freeze. I think it completely poisoned the environment. I'm not aware of anything she did that is particularly good. I can name off the top of my head things that were nasty, like ripping up the letter from George Bush to Ariel Sharon, which I think was the only thing Israel got from evacuating Gaza.
"I don't think she (Hillary Clinton) particularly likes Israel. I think she likes the kind of elite left among the Jewish people of Israel and in America like the Max Blumenthals, the Sidney Blumenthals and the people of that ilk who would like to turn Israel into a sort of Singapore. I think she's terrible for Israel."

Q: American Jews have shown little interest in voting foreign policy in a presidential election. How will you change that? Can you change that?
A: "Look, it's a great disappointment to me that the Jewish Left doesn't support Israel as a priority. I'm hoping that as the American Jewish community recognizes the stark differences between a Trump administration and a Clinton administration on Israel that they will reprioritize Israel in their voting calculus.

Donald Trump: the savior of 'the Biblical heartland of Judea and Samaria'
Arutz Sheva, 15-4-2016

In a meeting with Orthodox Jews Thursday, Donald Trump named his two advisors on Israel - and the names bespeak good news for nationalists who believe in Israel's right to the Biblical heartland of Judea and Samaria.
The two are Trump's chief lawyer, Jason D. Greenblatt, a real estate attorney from Teaneck, New Jersey, and another real estate lawyer, bankruptcy expert David M. Friedman of the Kasowitz law firm.
“I don’t think I can find better,” Trump said. “Jason’s very much a consultant to me on Israel, on everything. He’s a tremendously talented lawyer, one of the great real estate lawyers of the City of New York, and he (Greemblatt) has tremendous passion for Israel. When he goes on vacation, he goes to Israel.”
Greenblatt is very supportive of the Judea and Samaria settlement enterprise, and Friedman is a leading commentator on Arutz Sheva and serves as the President of American Friends of Bet El Institutions.

Obama declares himself a 'feminist'
Ahram online|AFP, Thursday 4 Aug 2016

A CHRISTIAN Nation & a SWEET Lord?

In a birthday editorial Thursday, US President Barack Obama described himself as a feminist and urged renewed effort to break down gender stereotypes.

The father of two girls, who was raised by a single mother, penned an essay for Glamour magazine, declaring "this is an extraordinary time to be a woman." "I say that not just as President but also as a feminist."
Listing strides made by women, from gaining the vote to cracking open previously off-bounds careers, Obama said "the most important change may be the toughest of all -- and that's changing ourselves."
He said raising Sasha, 15, and Malia, 18, had opened his eyes to the pressure girls are under. "You see the subtle and not-so-subtle social cues transmitted through culture. You feel the enormous pressure girls are under to look and behave and even think a certain way."

"We need to keep changing the attitude that raises our girls to be demure and our boys to be assertive, that criticizes our daughters for speaking out and our sons for shedding a tear," he wrote.
Obama turned 55 years old on Thursday.

War, conquest and imperialist domination
Christian Zionism - Terror In Jesus' Name
By Yoginder Sikand, 12-14-2005

Represented by literally hundreds of small denominations and churches today, particularly in America, Christian Zionism is today a formidable force and a major actor in global politics.
Christian Zionism comes in various shades, but the core of its message is total, unflinching support to the state of Israel and the Zionist imperialist project.
War, conquest and imperialist domination, based on a fanatic insistence on the absolute truth of Christianity and the racial superiority of the Jews lie at the very heart of Christian Zionism.
Christian Zionists believe that the Jews are God's 'Chosen People' and that God has given the Jews the absolute right to complete control over not just Palestine but, indeed, a vast stretch of territory, extending from present-day Egypt to Iraq, the so-called 'Greater Israel'. God, they claim, has selected the Jews above all other people.
Hence, they insist, those who oppose the imperialist project of the advocates of 'Greater Israel' or the Zionist occupation of Palestine are 'God's enemies', deserving to be crushed by every available means, including outright war and decimation.

Advocating Israel does not mean, however, that Christian Zionists accept Judaism as a legitimate means of salvation after Jesus...
Yet, because Christian Zionists are dogged defenders of the state of Israel and are fiercely anti-Arab and anti-Muslim, they have been able to establish a close nexus with right-wing Jewish groups and with the Israeli state and are today an integral part of the American-Israeli axis...
Christian Zionism, rooted in tradition of the Crusades and a long history of Church triumphalism, is a recipe for global war and Christian imperialism.
Moreover, it reflects a total lack of genuine spirituality, seeking to reduce the notion of God into a petty, whimsical and racist dictator, who willingly urges the slaughter of innocents in order to protect the expansionist designs of his supposedly 'Chosen People'.
Of course, Christian Zionism is hardly unique in its use of religion for such blatantly political ends, but given the immense clout enjoyed by its advocates today, especially in America, it is a much more menacing threat to world peace than is sometimes imagined and cannot be simply dismissed as the ravings of lunatics on the fringe.

Efraim Inbar: Why kill the useful idiots? A cynical approach by a right wing Zionist.
The West should further weaken Islamic State, but not destroy it. A weak but functioning IS can undermine the appeal of the caliphate among radical Muslims; keep bad actors focused on one another rather than on Western targets; and hamper Iran.

The destruction of ISIS is a strategic mistake
Professor Efraim Inbar, Arutz Sheva, 03/08/2016

US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter recently gathered defense ministers from allied nations to plan what officials hope will be the decisive stage in the campaign to eradicate the Islamic State (IS) organization. This is a strategic mistake.

It is true that IS has ignited immense passion among many young and frustrated Muslims all over the world, and the caliphate idea holds great appeal among believers.
But the relevant question is what can IS do, particularly in its current situation? The terrorist activities for which it recently took responsibility were perpetrated mostly by lone wolves who declared their allegiance to IS; they were not directed from Raqqa. On its own, IS is capable of only limited damage.

A weak IS is, counterintuitively, preferable to a destroyed IS.
IS is a magnet for radicalized Muslims in countries throughout the world. These volunteers are easier targets to identify, saving intelligence work. They acquire destructive skills in the fields of Syria and Iraq that are of undoubted concern if they return home, but some of them acquire shaheed status while still away - a blessing for their home countries. If IS is fully defeated, more of these people are likely to come home and cause trouble...
The collapse of IS will produce a terrorist diaspora that might further radicalize Muslim immigrants in the West. Most counter-terrorism agencies understand this danger.
Prolonging the life of IS probably assures the deaths of more Muslim extremists at the hands of other bad guys in the Middle East, and is likely to spare the West several terrorist attacks...
The continuing existence of IS serves a strategic purpose. Why help the brutal Assad regime win the Syrian civil war?
Is it in the West’s interests to strengthen the Russian grip on Syria and bolster its influence in the Middle East? Is enhancing Iranian control of Iraq congruent with American objectives in that country?
Furthermore, Hizballah is being seriously taxed by the fight against IS, a state of affairs that suits Western interests...

The Western distaste for IS brutality and immorality should not obfuscate strategic clarity..
Allowing bad guys to kill bad guys sounds very cynical, but it is useful and even moral to do so if it keeps the bad guys busy and less able to harm 'the good guys'...
The defeat of IS would encourage Iranian hegemony in the region, buttress Russia’s role, and prolong Assad’s tyranny. Tehran, Moscow, and Damascus do not share our democratic values and have little inclination to help America and the West.

The author is Professor in Political Studies at Bar-Ilan University and the Director of its Begin-Sadat (BESA) Center for Strategic Studies.

Flashback: America & its Useful Idiots

In political jargon, useful idiot is a term for people perceived as propagandists for a cause whose goals they are not fully aware of, and who are used cynically by the leaders of the cause.

It has become clear that the US’s main objectives in Syria is not their expressed goal of ‘fighting ISIS’, but regime change, isolating Russian influence, the Balkanization and the creation of failed states.
US presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton herself stated that ‘removing Assad is the top priority”...

The US sees the Syrian state as one of the last spheres of Russian influence beyond the borders of the former Soviet Union, and a threat to its Israeli ally in the region. The presence of ISIS and other terrorists groups serves these interests.
The US has a history of using terrorism to topple governments friendly to Russia.

Al Qaeda itself was borne of the US objective to topple the Soviet friendly government of Afghanistan. The dismemberment of Russian-friendly Serbia and the creation of Kosovo was done via the same means...
Syrian Girl, Global Research, Feb 23, 2016 - First published in October 2015 at the outset of the Russian bombing campaign.

"I think the Western powers - the US, especially followed by Britain and France - are using Islamic extremism as their foot soldiers in conquering various countries.
They are quite confident that once they’ve used these fanatics to get rid of regimes they don’t like, then they will be able to take over what they want – the pieces that are left of that country for themselves...
They will keep using Islamic extremism here and there feeling that these are the useful idiots that they can control eventually."
Diana Johnstone, Russia Today, 17-2-2016

Putin warns of using terrorists for political interests
Press TV (Iran), Sat Aug 6, 2016

Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned against exploiting terror groups for political goals, and strongly rejected the classification of terrorists into “good” and “bad” ones.
“It is unacceptable and extremely dangerous to try to exploit terrorist and radical extremist groups out of political and geopolitical interests,” Russia's TASS news agency quoted Putin as saying in an interview with Azerbaijan’s state news agency Azertac on Friday.
“In this endeavor, there can be no double standards; terrorists cannot be divided into ‘good’ and ‘bad’ ones,” he added, in a clear reference to Washington’s categorization of terrorist groups operating the Syria into good and bad ones.

In the few years, some Western countries have been using the terms, “moderate” and “extremist” in a reference to the militants in countries like Syria.
Such labels have been used as a pretext to help those insurgents that have been wreaking havoc in Syria and Iraq.
The Russian leader also expressed his deep concern about two hotbeds of instability, one in Afghanistan and the other in the Middle East, due to the increased flow of drugs, arms trafficking and movement of terrorists.
The recent terrorist attacks perpetrated in various regions of the world prove yet again that terrorism can be addressed solely through a common effort guided by the norms and principles of international law and coordinated by the UN,” he added.

The Rule of Law

Derived from internationally accepted standards, the World Justice Project’s definition of the rule of law is a system in which the following four universal principles are upheld:
- 1. The government and its officials and agents as well as individuals and private entities are accountable under the law.
- 2. The laws are clear, publicized, stable, and just; are applied evenly; and protect fundamental rights, including the security of persons and property and certain core human rights.
- 3. The process by which the laws are enacted, administered, and enforced is accessible, fair, and efficient.
- 4. Justice is delivered timely by competent, ethical, and independent representatives and neutrals who are of sufficient number, have adequate resources, and reflect the makeup of the communities they serve.

"Iraqis will illuminate as one big beautifully diversified family"
Archbishop Louis Sako, patriarch of the Iraq-based Chaldean Church, 5-8-2016

We Christians have been called to follow the footsteps of Lord Jesus Christ in being people of peace and pursuers of love and the goodwill for all humanity.
Our ancestors watered this blessed land with their blood; they were martyrs and witnesses of Christian faith. They planted monasteries together with the grains of wheat and churches with the palm trees as well as schools, hospitals etc. Therefore, we, as their descendants, have to protect what we inherited over thousands of years including land, history, language, values and spirituality.

The terrorism has not been defeated yet; the conflicts are not over; violations of human rights are still growing at different levels; the efforts for national reconciliation came to a halt; and the promises of eradicating corruption, reforming, establishing a civil government, and fighting against unemployment, poverty, illiteracy and diseases, did not go beyond being promises only.
In spite of all that, Iraqis (of different backgrounds) are still hoping for a better future, especially after the latest victories that have been achieved in retreating ISIS...
We would like to propose some practical ideas for post-ISIS situation:

* 1.Inviting Iraqis to deal wisely and reasonably with this critical turning point of Iraq's history away from revenge.
* 2.Standing against all those who attempt to "kidnap" our religion and homeland, using them for their own agenda and claiming the custody of both.
* 3.Appealing to whoever is supporting such organizations and supplying them with money and weapons to stop committing these "mortal" sins, because terrorist is not the individual who executes the "crime" only, but is indeed the person who preach, plan and fund such destructive ideology.
* 4.Don't give up. Submitting to frustration and despair is forbidden. Even though, we admit that we are all sharing the pain and suffering in these circumstances, but that should not lead us to give up and lose hope.
* 5.To defeat fanatical ideology, we must replace it with an alternative open-minded one. So, we need to campaign in order to dismantle such damaging ideology by building a new culture with a clear vision based on the values of mutual acceptance [..] and approval of commonly shared issues such as peace, stability, justice and equality.
* 6.Setting up a civilian political system as a new social contract (constitution) that addresses the causes of the crisis away from the perspectives of sectarian, national, religious, and political parties.... This way, Iraqis will illuminate as one big beautifully diversified family.

Louis Sako: "All the West is motivated by is money and power"

Muslim Brotherhood: No Threats Against Iraqi Defense Minister or Any Other
Ikhwanweb, Thursday, August 4, 2016

Some media outlets published a statement falsely alleging the Muslim Brotherhood has ruled that Iraqi Defense Minister Khaled Al-Obeidi is an apostate and an infidel, and has threatened to kill him. The Muslim Brotherhood asserts the following:

1. We have not issued any statement of this kind. The alleged statement is fabricated to demonize us.
2. Our fundamental principles and constants dictate that we never call individuals or societies apostates or infidels, or issue rulings accusing them of apostasy. We – as is well known about us, and as we always declare – are "preachers and reformers, not judges".
3. Debates and disagreements that arise within communities and societies are only possible to settle through dialogue, not apostasy fatwas and death threats.
4. We appeal to the media for accuracy and caution...

Dr Talaat Fahmi, Muslim Brotherhood Media Spokesman, Thursday – August 4, 2016

Did they change? Or are they speaking with two mouths?

Muslim Brotherhood 2012
"It Is an Obligation to Kill Bashar Al-Assad"

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". Al-Akkbar march 2012

Maqsoud 2012Higazi 2012higazi 2009

"The revolution is a gift from God"
Ahram Online, 17 May 2012

[May 2012] Muslim Brotherhood's presidential hopeful Mohamed Morsi visited the governorates of Beni Suef and Fayoum. Morsi was accompanied on his tour by Salafist figures Sheikh Mohamed Abdel-Maqsoud as well as Islamic scholar Safwat Hegazi and the Brotherhood's Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie.
Badie told the audience in Beni Suef that the revolution was a gift from God and the Egyptian people should pray and thank him for it. He also urged the Egyptian people to work hard and serve Egypt and choose a man who will apply Sharia Law like Morsi promised to do.

Egyptian Clerics 1-3-2012
"It Is an Obligation to Kill Bashar Al-Assad"

Safwat Hegazi (born 1963) is an Egyptian imam and television preacher who is on the list of "Individuals banned from the UK for stirring-up hatred". The government of the United Kingdom declared that he is "considered to be engaging in unacceptable behaviour by glorifying terrorist violence."
In 2009 he declared in a television interview that Buddhism, Zoroastrianism and the Baha'i Faith were not religions but were man-made. In 2012, Safwat Launched MB Candidate Muhammad Mursi's Campaign.

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.

By MOHANAD HAGE ALI, 14-11-2012

Western media outlets such as the BBC were quick to declare Sheikh Ahmed Moaz al-Khatib "a respected figure within Syria" who holds "moderate" political views, citing his trips to Britain and the United States, as well as his teaching experience at the Dutch Institute in Damascus, as evidence. ...
While Khatib used his post-election speech to call for equal rights for "all parts of the harmonious Syrian people," his previous rhetoric toward his country's minorities has been nothing short of virulent. One of his articles describes Shiite using the slur rawafid, or "rejectionists"; he even goes further, criticizing Shiites' ability to "establish lies and follow them." Such language, needless to say, will hardly reassure the country's Alawite community, a Shiite offshoot to which Assad belongs.

Khatib is a fan of Qatar-based Egyptian televangelist cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi. His website places Qaradawi on equal footing with Tunisia's Mohamed Bouazizi, whose self-immolation set off the Arab revolutions, and praised the Egyptian preacher as "our great Imam."
Qaradawi is a controversial figure who has been denied entry to France and Britain for his support of suicide bombings.. Given Qaradawi's Qatari connections, Khatib's praise of the cleric may be an indication of where his loyalties lie.

On 21 February 2011, al-Qaradawi talked about the protests in Libya and issued a fatwa against Muammar Gaddafi:
...To the officers and the soldiers who are able to kill Muammar Gaddafi, to whoever among them is able to shoot him with a bullet and to free the country and [God’s] servants from him, I issue this fatwa (uftî): Do it! That man wants to exterminate the people (sha‘b). As for me, I protect the people (sha‘b) and I issue this fatwa: 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!
It is not permissible (lâ yajûzu) to any officer, be he a officer pilot, or a ground forces officer, or an air forces officer, or any other, it is not permissible to obey this man within disobedience (ma‘siya) [to God], in evil (sharr), in injustice (zulm), in oppression (baghî ‘alâ) of [His] servants.

Hypermarket of Dogmas
Spiegel online, 15-2-2011

He talks about everything, which makes him exhibit A for anyone seeking to demonize Islam. A justification for every stupidity can be found in Qaradawi's words, as long as one searches long enough. On the other hand, Muslims refer to the search for the appropriate dogma as "fatwa shopping." To them, Qaradawi is a hypermarket of dogmas.
During a visit to London, then Mayor Ken Livingstone asked the sheikh how he felt about the rights of homosexuals. "He told me that he was against attacks on homosexuals," Livingstone recalls. But the mufti isn't opposed to 100 lashes for gays and lesbians if that is the punishment imposed by a Sharia judge, at least according to statements he has made on his program.

He attended Al-Azhar University in Cairo, where he met Hassan al-Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood. Banna offered an Islamic alternative to the alleged ills of modern life: corruption and gambling, insolent women and provocative writings, alcohol and the neglect of the poorest members of society. In a word: godlessness.
Former Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser imprisoned the sheikh three times because of his Islamist activities. In 1961, Qaradawi went into exile in Qatar, where he still lives today. With the protection of the Emir of Qatar, Qaradawi was able to build his fatwa empire, a realm of schools and various forms of media.

Yusuf Al-Qaradawi and Political Opportunism
By As'ad AbuKhalil, Al-Akhbar 28-3-2012

For some reason, Yusuf Al-Qaradawi is the guru of Islamists in the Arab world. In fact, the reason is obvious: there is such a dearth of leaders in the movement that this man has become widely influential.
It would be unfair to say that his influence stems solely from the exposure that he is provided by Qatar through his weekly TV program on Al Jazeera. Qaradawi is a prolific author and he uses simple language to issue his declarations and rulings about interpretations of Shariah.

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.

Read more: Saddam's Death, Page 19 (2012)

Syria's Mufti Hassoun calls for fighting takfiri and divisional mentality
Syrian Arab News Agency, 7 August 2016

Damascus, SANA – Syria’s Grand Mufti Sheikh Ahmad Badreddin Hassoun called on all Syrians to return to their homeland, stressing that Syria welcomes all of its sons to come back and take part in the reconstruction of their country.
Hassoun was speaking during a dialogue session held at the Holy Cross Church in Damascus under the title “A Dialogue from Heart to Heart” organized by the Syrian National Forum on Saturday.
He underlined the Syrian people’s love for life and peace, hatred to war and destruction and commitment to their homeland, noting to the terrorist nature of war which Syria is facing and that terrorism should not be associated with Islam because terrorism has no religion.
The Grand Mufti called for combating takfiri mentality with the enlightenment mentality and enhancing dialogue among all Syrians to unite ranks in order to confront the conspiracy and the six-year war.
He indicated to the divisional mentality used by western powers to fragment countries into small states in order to dominate their resources and capabilities, adding that Syria is paying the price for its national and principled stances.
Hassoun noted that Syrians will always be adherent to their homeland, army and leadership...

read more: page 18

Flashback 2008: "That what is sacred in the world is man"
General Mufti of the Syrian Arabic Republic, Ahmad Badreddin Hassoun

Turning to education, Dr Hassoun said, "Let us teach our school pupils that what is sacred in the world is man" since man "is the creation of the creator".
If we want peace, starting for example with Palestine and Israel, he suggested that rather than building walls, "let us build bridges of peace".
He also argued that "we must create states on a civil basis, not a religious basis", adding "I don't impose my religion on you, nor do you impose your religion on me". (European parlement, 15-1-2008)

Erdogan Exclusive: The Same Old Regime Change Song
No to ASSAD. YES to Saudi Arabia, Qatar and America
TASS News Agency, August 09, 2016

Ahead of the meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in an interview with TASS commented on Moscow-Ankara relations, the military coup attempt, the Kurdish question, Syrian peace settlement and anti-terrorism efforts.

- Mr. President, What is your agenda?
- Our countries are key players in the region and they are going to accomplish a great deal together. It is with this conviction that I will arrive in Russia on a visit. I don’t have the slightest doubt that Mr. Putin has been making preparations for the visit in the same fashion...
I envision this visit as a new landmark in bilateral relations, a clean slate from which to start anew.

All world leaders must resist treason, government coup attempts and attacks on their own people.

- Just recently Turkey experienced a very dramatic moment There was an attempted coup against the government. How did you manage to quash the rebellion?
- Those who tried to stage this coup against the government and the people, failed to take into account key factors. Although they had penetrated deeply into government agencies, the army, the police and the judiciary, we have police and military servicemen who refused to join the coup plotters...
Amid these events, I received a phone call from Mr. Putin already on the second day. As we talked he said that he was against the coup and would remain on our side. I recall his high-principled position with gratitude and I thank him on behalf of myself and the Turkish people.
All world leaders must resist treason, government coup attempts and attacks on their own people.

All citizens of our country are guaranteed freedom of conscience

- I know, Mr. President, that you pay much attention to creating Turkey’s new fundamental law, the new Constitution. You are the architect of the new legislation. What fundamentally new features will the new Constitution have? Should the people adopt it at your initiative? And how will this Constitution reconcile the traditions of a secular Turkish state with the Muslim religion?
- I don’t know what you understanding of secularism is. We understand secularism as a state of affairs that allows an individual of any religion to feel free to profess his or her faith. We declared that very clearly from the outset when we established our party. In other words, Christians, Muslims and Jews are free to profess their faith without restrictions. Muslims account for 99% of Turkey’s population. Everybody knows that Russia’s population is mostly Christian.
All citizens of our country are guaranteed freedom of conscience, just as they are in Russia. These guarantees are established by our Constitution. Turkey is not a clerical state. One should remember that.
Alongside secular features, our state has a social-democratic basis. For some reason, the West confuses these notions and keeps hinting that Turkey is about to change its secular foundation. But that won’t be. We have repeatedly proven that by action over the past 14 years that we have been in power. The processes that are afoot in European society are also in progress within Turkish society. But there is a certain system of values. Attention should be paid to it, but we do not dictate it to all social strata. Each individual lives one’s own life, believes in things that he deems right and acts in the way he regards as proper.

No to ASSAD. YES to Saudi Arabia, Qatar and America

- Mr. President, both you and those in Russia have said that the Syrian settlement will be among the most important issues that will be discussed in St. Petersburg. How do you see a solution to this issue? This is a very burdensome issue for Russia, for you and for the entire world. How do you see it?
- I’ll tell you in a frank and straightforward manner. Basically, Russia is fundamentally the key and most important player in establishing peace in Syria. I believe it is necessary to solve this crisis with the help of mutual action by Russia and Turkey. If the talk is about widening the circle of participants, then I already told my dear friend Vladimir [Putin] earlier: if necessary, we’ll also involve Iran in the effort. We can invite Qatar, Saudi Arabia and America. In this regard, we can form a wide circle of participants.
We don’t want Syria’s disintegration, but the departure of Bashar Assad... This is the condition for preventing this scenario. Syria’s unity cannot be kept with Assad. And we cannot support a murderer who has committed acts of state terror.

Assad is supporting ISIS

- The struggle against the Islamic State is a very serious issue for Russia as well... How can the Islamic State be fought..?
- We see our strategy in the following way. If we look at the sources of profit they get from the sale of energy resources, we’ll see that the government of Syria is one of them. It is one of the places where the Islamic State sells its oil...

Military Coup In Syria

The commander of the Free Syrian Army, Riad al-Asaad, sends out a message regarding the anticipated Zero Hour.

Flashback: Turkish involvement in the Syrian Civil War

Turkey, whose relations with Syria had been friendly over the previous decade, condemned its President Bashar Assad over the crackdown on protests in 2011 and requested his departure from office.
In the beginning of the Syrian Civil War, Turkey trained defectors of the Syrian Army on its territory, and in July 2011, a group of them announced the birth of the Free Syrian Army, under the supervision of Turkish intelligence.
In October 2011, Turkey began sheltering the Free Syrian Army, offering the group a safe zone and a base of operations. Together with Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Turkey has provided the rebels with arms and other military equipment.
Turkey also provided refuge for Syrian dissidents. Syrian opposition activists convened in Istanbul in May to discuss regime change, and Turkey hosted the head of the Free Syrian Army, Colonel Riad al-Asaad. (Wikipedia info)

Humanitarian situation in Syria should not be politicized
or used for protecting terrorists
Syrian Arab News Agency, 9-8-2016

Moscow, SANA – Russia’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Vladimir Safronkov stressed that the only way for solving the crisis in Syria is represented through unifying efforts to combat terrorism and resuming political dialogue among the Syrian sides, pointing out that imposing foreign solutions would lead to the continuation of instability in the country.
Safronkov said during a UN Security Council’s session that the humanitarian situation in Syria should not be politicized and used intentionally or unintentionally for protecting terrorists or other members who make residents of Aleppo human shields and prevent them form leaving the city, in addition to shelling the humanitarian corridors and stealing humanitarian aid. He also pointed out that Russia has organized, in cooperation with the Syrian government, humanitarian corridors in Aleppo...
Safronkov clarified that there is a feeling that some states have no desire or willingness or ability to put an end to terrorists in Syria or either separate them from the so-called “moderate opposition”, which is being hided behind crying over the humanitarian situation in Aleppo.
The Russian Diplomat said that the main issue for “Damascus enemies” and those hindering the unification of international efforts is keeping a certain level of tension in the humanitarian side, clarifying that this worry is hypocritical, considering the unilateral sanctions.
He emphasized that it is time the unilateral sanctions imposed on Syria to be abolished, to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people.

Vladimir Putin: "We are against any unconstitutional actions"
Ahram online|AFP, Tuesday 9 Aug 2016

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday hosted Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan in their first encounter since Ankara downed one of Moscow's warplanes last November, sparking a deep diplomatic crisis.
"Your visit today, despite a very difficult situation regarding domestic politics, indicates that we all want to restart dialogue and restore relations between Russia and Turkey," Putin said as the two met in Saint Petersburg.
The visit to Russia is Erdogan's first foreign trip since the failed coup against him in July, which sparked a purge of political opponents and cast a shadow over Turkey's relations with the West.

"I know that I was one of the first who called you to express support regarding the crisis," Putin said of the coup attempt. "I want to say once again that this is our principled position, we are against any unconstitutional actions."
Erdogan said the Turkish people were "happy" Putin had expressed his support following the attempted coup, expecting the two countries to "enter into a very different phase with the steps we will take and have taken."
The shooting down of a Russian fighter jet by a Turkish F-16 over the Syrian border last November saw a furious Putin slap economic sanctions on Turkey and launch a blistering war of words with Erdogan that seemed to irrevocably damage burgeoning ties. But Putin in June said Erdogan had sent a letter expressing his regret over the incident and announced a rollback of some of the sanctions.

Western Backed Jihadis

OGN Report: Battle for Aleppo, august 2016

Jihadi, or jihadist, refers to a person who believes that an Islamic state governing the entire community of Muslims must be created, and that this necessity justifies violent conflict with those who stand in its way.

Saudi Arabia urges UN to protect families in Aleppo
Saudi Gazette, Aug 10, 2016

Saudi Arabia’s Permanent Representative to UN Abdullah Al-Moallemi has appealed to the Security Council to provide immediate protection to civilians and children in Aleppo and other Syrian cities.
Addressing an informal UN meeting on Aleppo on Monday evening, Moallemi urged the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to Syrians and stop their forced displacement. The meeting was called by the US, France, Britain, New Zealand and Ukraine.

We condemn in the strongest terms the Syrian regime’s continuous violations against civilians, exposing women and children to killings and their cities to destruction,” said Moallemi.
He said aerial bombardments by the Syrian regime and their allies were deliberate targeting schools, hospitals and medical personnel.
The ambassador also condemned the criminal role being played by the foreign Revolutionary Guard forces in Syria and Hezbollah terrorist militias.

UK guidance on asylum for Brotherhood members not positive: Egypt FM
Ahram Online, Tuesday 9 Aug 2016

Egypt considers the recently-issued UK Home Office guidance allowing members of the Muslim Brotherhood to apply for asylum in Britain as "not positive" for the mutual relations between both countries, foreign minister Sameh Shoukry said at a press conference in Cairo. In statements reported by the state-owned MENA agency on Tuesday, Shoukry said that although the British document was a framework clarifying some asylum-related procedures that should be taken in a context of non-exaggeration, it may have negative impact on Egyptian-British relations.
He said that the guidance makes the “unfounded” assertions that Egyptian authorities target a specific group or that the Egyptian judiciary is not fulfilling its role in ensuring fair trials, describing it as a “fallacious aspersion.”
The Egyptian foreign minister said that Egypt always briefs international partners about crimes committed by the now-banned Muslim Brotherhood, including terrorist acts that target security forces and citizens.

muslim brotherhood egypt

The Brotherhood was designated a terrorist organisation by Egypt's interim authorities in December 2013, with the freezing of the assets of many of its members and all affiliated NGOs.
The UK’s Home Office guidance, issued in August, states that Brotherhood members in Egypt are eligible for political asylum in the UK if they can prove they are under threat of persecution in Egypt.
The guidance states that high-profile or politically active Brotherhood members in Egypt “may be able to show that they are at risk of persecution, including of being held in detention, where they may be at risk of ill-treatment, trial also without due process and disproportionate punishment.”

Ex-CIA Director: ‘Kill Russians and Iranians, threaten Assad’
Murtaza Hussain, The Intercept, Aug. 9 2016

Former acting CIA Director Michael Morell said in an interview Monday that U.S. policy in Syria should be to make Iran and Russia “pay a price” by arming local groups and instructing them to kill Iranian and Russian personnel in the country.
Morell was appearing on the Charlie Rose show on PBS in the wake of his publicly endorsing Hillary Clinton on the New York Times opinion pages.
Clinton has expressed support for increased military intervention in Syria against Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian government. Iran and Russia are backing Assad.
What they need is to have the Russians and Iranians pay a little price,” Morell said. “When we were in Iraq, the Iranians were giving weapons to the Shia militia, who were killing American soldiers, right? The Iranians were making us pay a price. We need to make the Iranians pay a price in Syria. We need to make the Russians pay a price.”
Morell said the killing of Russians and Iranians should be undertaken “covertly, so you don’t tell the world about it, you don’t stand up at the Pentagon and say ‘we did this.’ But you make sure they know it in Moscow and Tehran.”
Morell also proposed that U.S. forces begin bombing Syrian government installations, including government offices, aircraft and presidential guard positions. The former acting CIA director said that he wanted to “scare Assad.” Morell clarified that he wasn’t actually calling for Assad’s assassination.
He compared his proposal to American support for groups that targeted Russian forces in Afghanistan during the 1980’s — efforts that later helped incubate al Qaeda.
Morell’s endorsement of Clinton was quickly seen as a sign that he was interested in a role in a possible Clinton administration. He wrote that Clinton would be a “highly qualified commander in chief” and a “strong proponent of a more aggressive approach” to the conflict in Syria.

Michael Morell was a top CIA officer who played a critical role in the most important counterterrorism events of the past two decades.
Morell was by President Bush's side on 9/11/01 when terrorists struck America and in the White House Situation Room advising President Obama on 5/1/11 when America struck back-killing Usama bin Ladin.
For three decades, Morell worked at the CIA, rising to acting director before retiring in 2013; he is now a national-security correspondent for CBS News. Morell joined the CIA out of college and never stopped being impressed by the organization and its people. CIA employees are "the finest public servants" he knows
In 2000, he assumed the coveted position of daily briefer for George W. Bush. Six and often seven days a week, Morell delivered the PDB – President’s Daily Brief – in the Oval Office, or anywhere in the world Bush was traveling. Once again, he was charged with deciding what intelligence items merited the attention of an immensely powerful figure. The information he presented directly shaped the President’s worldview and informed his policy decisions.

Divide and Rule: How Factionalism in Palestine
is Killing Prospects for Freedom
By Ramzy Baroud, Palestine Chronicle, 10-8-2016

"Zionism regards unity of Arabs as contradictory to its existence. Therefore, Zionism's line of defense is based on the principle that the Arab nation must be broken... It is necessary for Zionism to revive all the old historical frictions that took place in the path of nationhood, so it can use them [..] to break up the fabric of Arab nations." Saddam Hussein (The Saddam's tapes, 1978-2001, page 67)

As Palestinians in the Occupied Territories begin preparations for local elections which are scheduled for October, division and factionalism are rearing their ugly head. Palestinian political platforms and social media are abuzz with self-defeating propaganda: Fatah supporters attacking Hamas’ alleged failures, and Hamas’ supporters doing the same...

Hamas on a path to self-destruction?

Hamas, honoring 'useful idiot' Yusuf Qaradawi, the leading force behind the destruction of Libya, Iraq and Syria. (Qaradawi = Qatar. Qatar = USA. USA = Israel. Israel = Divide & Rule, the enemy of Arab Nationalism)

While one must insist on national unity, it is difficult to imagine a successful union between both groups without a fundamental change in the structure of these parties and overall political outlook.
Of course, a main case in point remains the civil war of 2007, a year or so after Hamas won parliamentary elections.
The Fatah-Hamas political culture failed to understand that the losing party must concede and serve in the opposition, and the victorious party cannot assume the vote as a mandate for factional domination.
Other factors contributed to the Palestinian divide. The US, at the behest of Israel, wanted to ensure the collapse of the Hamas government and conditioned its support for Fatah based on the rejection of any unity government. Israel, too, inflicted much harm, restricting the movement of elected MPs, arresting them and eventually entirely besieging Gaza.
The European Union and the United Nations were hardly helpful, they could have insisted on the respect of Palestinian voters, but they succumbed under American pressure.

However, there can also be no denial that these factors alone should not have jeopardized Palestinian unity, if the factions were keen on it. But the truth is, for many within the Palestinian leadership, unity is not an urgent matter and, for them, the ascendancy of the faction will always trump the centrality of the homeland.
This is partly because factional politics is deeply rooted in Palestinian society. And like the Israeli occupation, factionalism is an enemy of the Palestinian people. It has constantly overwhelmed any attempt at fostering dialogue and true democracy among Palestinians. Without unity in politics, it is difficult to envisage unity in purpose, a national liberation project, a unified resistance strategy and the eventual freedom of the Palestinians.
There can never be a free Palestine without Palestinians first freeing themselves from factional repression, for which they, and only they, are ultimately responsible.
For Israel, Palestinian factionalism is a central piece in its strategy to divide and rule. Sadly, many Palestinians are playing along, and by doing so are jeopardizing their own salvation...

Nearly 7,000 terrorists mass near Aleppo
Russia Today, 10 Aug, 2016

Aleppo & Al-Qaeda

Saudi cleric, Abdullah al-Muhaysini, the prominent leader and top recruiter of the al-Qaeda Syrian branch, was filmed preaching his followers inside rebel-held districts of Aleppo. He was shown in the video standing amid a group of armed militants, taunting Russia and Iran about his men’s ability to defeat their forces in southern Aleppo.

Videoclip, 2-4-2016

Nearly 7,000 heavy armored terrorists have taken positions southeast of the key Syrian city of Aleppo, the Russian Defense Ministry says. The build-up comes as Moscow brokers a three-hour daily truce for the embattled city.
“The most alarming situation has unfolded in the southwest outskirts of Aleppo,” Lieutenant General Sergey Rudskoy, chief of the main operations department of the Russian General Staff, told reporters on Wednesday.
Terrorists amassed to a unit of some 7,000 fighters, armed with tanks, armored personnel carriers, artillery and trucks with weapons mounted on them,” Rudskoy said. The groups of terrorists are getting reinforcements from neighboring territories. "Militants are pulling their troops from the controlled areas in the provinces of Idlib, Homs and Hama,” Rudskoy said.

On Wednesday, terrorists shelled residential areas in Aleppo’s southwestern neighborhood of Hamdania, Syrian news agency SANA reports. Government forces have been engaged in fierce fighting with the terrorists in the area in the past four days.
Since Sunday “nearly 1,000 militants were killed and over 2,000 injured,” the Russian General Staff told media. The operation was backed by the Russian Air force, targeting the positions of insurgents and their supply routes around Aleppo.
Some of the terrorist groups tried to flee using a “safe” corridor, Rudskoy added. In the end of July special humanitarian routes for civilians around Aleppo were established by the Russian Reconciliation Center and Syrian forces.

Those civilians remaining are facing a dire humanitarian situation. To facilitate the escape of civilians, Moscow on Wednesday proposed daily three-hour ceasefires for humanitarian corridors in the city. According to Rudskoy, it is due to take effect starting August 11 from 10 am to 1 pm local time.
Since the establishing of humanitarian corridors on July 28, some “50 tons of food, basic necessities, medicine as well as 93 tons of water” were supplied to Aleppo, Rudskoy stated on Wednesday.

Syrian Military Planes Drop "Surrender Now" Leaflets over Aleppo
FARS News Agency, 11-8-2016

TEHRAN (FNA) The Syrian army aircraft dropped leaflets reading "Surrender Now" over the Aleppo city to give the Takfiri terrorists a last chance to lay down their arms and surrender to the authorities.
On Wednesday, the Syrian fighter jets launched several rounds of attacks on terrorist groups' military convoys in Northwestern and Southwestern Aleppo, preventing them from supplying arms and fresh forces for Jeish al-Fatah in the Southern districts of Aleppo city.
Long columns of terrorists' vehicles in different roads near Saraqib, al-Zerbeh, Taftnaz, Kahn Touman, Haraytan and Kafr Hamra were hit badly in the Syrian fighter jets' strikes. None of the convoy could deliver army, ammunition and fresh forces to battlefield in Southern districts of Aleppo.
In the meantime, Jeish al-Fatah positions in residential project of 10170, Southern side of al-Hakimeh school and al-Ameriyeh neighborhood were targeted in Syrian air attacks. Several armored vehicles were destroyed in Syrian air attacks in Khan Touman, Khan al-Asal and al-Artab.
Syrian artillery and missile units opened fire at terrorists' centers in Western side of Khan Touman, while resistance forces' drones targeted Jeish al-Fatah's positions in the village of Khalseh.
Reports said on Tuesday that a large number of army soldiers and their popular allies were waiting to receive the operation code from the Aleppo Operations Command Center to storm Jeish al-Fatah's defense lines in the Southern and Southwestern parts of the city.

The West Has No Morals
By Vladimir Putin, AxisOfLogic, August 11, 2016

Many Russians hold Western values in contempt, and resist being subjugated to them. Deserved or not, the West is often perceived as a faithless and individualistic society with an exceptional love of money.

Flashback: Putin and the New Russia
By William Pfaff, 1-4-2015

Russia and the United States are engaged in a profound ideological confrontation — one that isn’t widely understood in Western Europe or even at the White House...
The Russian president claims that his real political ambition is to restore to Russia the culture, religion and historical mission of its past... He wishes to remake the “New Russia” that existed at the end of the Romanoff era.

He has restored the Orthodox Church to the primacy it then occupied, and interestingly enough has distributed among his senior officials the works of Christian philosophers of the pre-revolutionary period (and later, of those in exile), including Nicholas Berdyaev, Vladimir Solovyov and Ivan Ilyin...
Putin has denied that he wishes to impose a religio-ideological state doctrine in the place of Marxism, but he does wish to sponsor the reintroduction of Russian elites to the national past and its historical culture.
He wishes to see a sovereign democracy that is “qualitative” rather than arithmetical or quantitative...
It is a response to what Putin views as the decadent and “anthropocentric,” or egoistic and materialistic, modern West...

Nicolai Berdjajew

Nikolai Alexandrovich Berdyaev (18 March 1874 – 24 March 1948) was a Russian Christian universalist mystic (personalist) and Christian anarchist political philosopher.

PERSONALISM emphasizes the significance, uniqueness and inviolability of the person, as well as the person's essentially relational or communitarian dimension.
The title “personalism” can therefore legitimately be applied to any school of thought that focuses on the reality of persons and their unique status among beings in general.
Personalists regard personhood (or “personality”) as the fundamental notion, as that which gives meaning to all of reality and constitutes its supreme value. Personhood carries with it an inviolable dignity that merits unconditional respect. (Stanford Encyclopedia)

In Berdyaev's view, the only way of escape from the many forms of slavery (spiritual, economic, political) lies in the fuller realization of personality, as he defines it.
Berdyaev turned to religious views and played a large part in the renaissance of religious and philosophical thought in Russian intellectual life early in the 20th century. In 1922 he and a number of other intellectuals were expelled from the USSR.

Don't confuse the concept of person with the concept of individual
(from: Personalism & Marxism 1935)

* "Hostile to the principle of person is every single-planed world-outlook, for which the nature of man is comprised solely by its belonging to the social plane of being, i.e. man possesses no dimension of depth."
* "It is not appropriate to confuse the concept of person with the concept of individual.
The individual is a naturalistic category, biological and sociological, and it appertains to the natural world. It is an atom, indivisible, not having inner life, it is anonymous. The individual does not possess any unique or independent existence apart from race or from society."
"Person signifies something altogether different. Person is a spiritual and religious category. Person speaks not only about man belonging to the natural and social order, but also to a different dimension of being, to the spiritual world. Person is a form of being, higher than anything natural or social."
"Person is created by God and in this is its highest merit, and the source of its independence and freedom. That which is born in the generative process and formed in the social process is merely the individual, in which person needs to be realised."

Read more: Saddam's Death, page 52

Russia's Third Path, an Alternative to Washington's 'Interventionist Foreign Policy'
Sputnik News, 11-8-2016

Russia has succeeded in forging an alternative approach to foreign policy that is based on strategic independence, freedom of action and respect for national sovereignty, political analyst Mikå Mered told Atlantico. "Russia has managed to once again find its voice and become the embodiment of the third path," he said...
The analyst mentioned Russia's counterterrorism campaign in Syria and its overall strategy in the Middle East as some of the country's latest achievements.
There are other positive developments: Russia put its own spaceport in the Far East online, has strengthened economic ties with China, India and Japan, reformed of the army and improved its presence in global media space...
For his part, French writer Alexandre Del Valle told Atlantico that "Russia has not reached its [foreign policy] goals, but it is moving in the right direction."
Russia's foreign policy is aimed at promoting a more balanced world-order that does not gravitate towards a single center of power. As a result, Moscow "does not want to be the global leader and Washington's adversary," he said...
The Syrian conflict and the Iran nuclear deal show that "Russia under Vladimir Putin is trying to discuss global issues with Washington as equals," the writer observed.
Del Valle also said that Moscow has "grown tired" of Washington using human rights to justify military interventions.
"Putin is still open for cooperation with Europe and the West but only under the condition that they cast away arrogance and stop meddling in internal affairs of countries that Russia views as strategically important," he said.
Del Valle further noted that China, Turkey, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Egypt, Algiers share Russia's view on Washington's foreign policy.

Muammar Gaddafi 27 december 2008:
America must return to the Monroe Doctrine

America must return to the Monroe Doctrine, advocated by President James Monroe in 1823, which states that “The United States would not interfere with problems in Europe, and that European powers were no longer to or interfere with the affairs of the newly independent states of the Americas”. It must enlarge the Doctrine to encompass non-interference in the affairs of the whole world.

The Monroe doctrine: moral opposition to colonialism

The doctrine's authors, chiefly future-President and then secretary-of-state John Quincy Adams, saw it as a proclamation by the United States of moral opposition to colonialism...
Adams foresaw what would befall the United States if it sacrificed its republican spirit on the altar of empire. He stated that America "goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy" lest she "involve herself beyond power of extrication, in all wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force."
The United States, Adams warned, might "become the dictatress of the world [but] she would be no longer the ruler of her own spirit."

Read more: Saddam's Death, page 60

syria 14-12-2012: western backed islamist rebels

YPG: Rebel revolution no more than a mask
to justify massacres and human rights violations
ARA News, August 12, 2016

ALEPPO – Kurdish forces of the People’s Protection Units (YPG) responded in an official statement to the Syrian rebels’ Aleppo Operations Chamber that said they will attack the Kurds after breaking a regime siege on Aleppo city.
“It has been two years and more since these [Syrian opposition] groups started launching heinous assaults using chemical weapons and other banned materials against unarmed civilians in the besieged Kurdish neighbourhood of Sheikh Maqsoud in Aleppo,” the YPG leadership said.
The revolution they [rebel groups] are talking about is no more than a mask to justify the massacres and human rights violations being committed by those groups which are linked to outside agendas,” the statement added.
Speaking to ARA News, YPG official Meer Abass said that the recent improvement in the Turkish-Russian relations “will lead to a weakening of the Syrian opposition groups.”
“Turkish government will soon cut off supplies to the Syrian opposition groups after boosting ties with Russia, in preparation for a political solution.”
“Our last offenses on rebel group positions in the surrounding districts of Sheikh Maqsoud neighborhood, indicates our abidance to protect our people, since those positions have been used to bomb civilians in the Kurdish inhabited neighborhood which caused loss of hundreds of woman and children and more thousands injured,” the YPG said.

Major Yasser Abd al-Rahim, Commander of the rebel group of Fatah Halab Operations Chamber in Aleppo, said on Tuesday that they will attack the Kurds in Aleppo...
Abd al-Rahim said that the Syrian opposition militias will take ‘revenge’ for the Syrian rebels that were killed by YPG, after they attacked YPG positions, vowing that Kurds “will not find a place to bury their dead in Aleppo”.

Flashback 2012: "Why are they establishing Al-Qaeda on coasts near Europe?"

TEHRAN -- The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of Iran’s Armed Forces, Hassan Firouzabadi, says that the United States’ efforts to establish Al-Qaeda branches in Syria and Lebanon will create a greater threat for Europe than nuclear weapons.
“The global arrogance (forces of imperialism) which created Al-Qaeda and the Taliban and then received serious blows from them and today claims it is at war with Al-Qaeda in the Islamic country of Pakistan has closed its eyes to” its previous mistakes, “and now it is establishing Al-Qaeda in Syria and Lebanon,” he opined.
Firouzabadi, said U.S. strategists should explain this paradox, namely if the United States is fighting Al-Qaeda in Pakistan and occupied Afghanistan, “why are they again establishing Al-Qaeda on coasts near Europe?” ... (Tehran Times, 12-6-2012)

read more: saddams death, page 57

Thousands at the Western Wall to mourn
YNet News, 14-8-2016

Thousands of people arrived at the Western Wall in Jerusalem on Saturday night to mark Tisha B'Av (The destruction of the temple).
Starting Saturday night and continuing throughout the day Sunday, worshipers at the Kotel have been reading the Book of Lamentations, as well as lamentations written following the destruction of the Temple. Because studying Torah is considered a joyous activity, it is not permitted on Tisha B'Av.
According to custom, worshipers sit on low chairs or on the floor—with some even sleeping on the floor—to signify the suffering of the mourning. At the synagogue, the Book of Lamentations is read in low lighting, and at times even by candle light.
The mourning is not limited to the Western Wall. Millions of Jews in Israel and all over the world mark the day by fasting.
On Saturday night, special gatherings were held across the country, bringing together people from different sectors in an effort to end gratuitous hatred, which, according to Jewish belief is what led to the destruction of the Second Temple.

Josephus Flavius: Tyrants among the Jews brought the Roman power upon us

The Temple: theocratic symbol of anti-modernism
(modernism = secularism, humanism, reason)

The Jewish theocracy was founded by the Babylonian Scribe EZRA, a leader of the Israelites returning to the Land of Israel (400 bC). It was the end of the era of the independent (anti-authoritarian) prophets. A theocracy is favoring complete obedience or subjection to authority as opposed to individual freedom.

Theocracy - definition:
1. a form of government in which God or a deity is recognized as the supreme civil ruler, the God's or deity's laws being interpreted by the ecclesiastical authorities.
2. a system of government by priests claiming a divine commission.
3. a commonwealth or state under such a form or system of government.

As a theocracy Israel is the enemy of the prophet Jesus

was a defender of
Secularism (the separation of religion from state) and Humanism

"If Jesus lived today, he would be a secular humanist and would reject Christianity, just as he "rejected" Judaism and inspired Christianity. Christianity was once the vehicle for the boldest and most honest thinking about reality, the brotherhood of man, and the human condition.." (A humanist Jesus)

Then Jesus said to them, "Give back to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's." And they were amazed at him. (Mark 12:17)
You are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone on earth your father, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. (Matthew 23:9)

2. The GNOSTIC Jesus was the enemy of Ignorance
(during the first centuries Christianity was Gnosticism)

The heart of the human problem for the Gnostic is ignorance, sometimes called “sleep,” “intoxication,” or “blindness.” Jesus redeems man from such ignorance.
Jesus is a dispenser of wisdom, not the crucified and resurrected Lord.
In the Valentinian system “there is no need whatsoever for guilt, for repentance from so-called sin, neither is there a need for a blind belief in vicarious salvation by way of the death of Jesus.”
Rather, Jesus is savior in the sense of being a “spiritual maker of wholeness” who cures us of our sickness of ignorance. (The Gnostic Jesus)

Iranian Messianism:
Muslims & Christians will form a progressive movement

Iranian Shiites believe that at the end of times, the 12th Imam, Mahdi, a 9th century prophet, will reappear with Jesus Christ at his side..
In the picture the Chief of Staff ofIslam Republic of Iran, Major General Sayyid Hassan Firouzabadi is seen while kissing the book called "The Prophet Jesus and Hazrat Mahdi Will Come This Century" as an expression of his appreciation.

The Chief of Staff of Iran's Armed Forces, Major General Sayyid Hassan Firouzabadi, who is known with his closeness to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, noted "Today’s world is enthusiastic for a justice-dispersing Saviour [Hazrat Mahdi (pbuh)] and the emergence of the rule of justice..." (Read more: Saddam's Death, page 67)

Jesus: a Spiritual (Gnostic?) Leader
Qur’anic Passages about Jesus
Believe in the prophets (not the priests) and make no difference

2:87 We gave Jesus the son of Mary Clear (Signs) and we strengthened him with the holy spirit
2:136 We believe in Allah, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Isma’il, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to (all) prophets from their Lord: We make no difference between one and another of them...
4 :171 O People of the Book! Commit no excesses in your religion: Nor say of Allah aught but the truth. Christ Jesus the son of Mary was (no more than) a messenger of Allah, and His Word, which He bestowed on Mary, and a spirit proceeding from Him: so believe in Allah and His messengers.
43:63 When Jesus came with Clear Signs, he said: “Now have I come to you with Wisdom, and in order to make clear to you some of the (points) on which ye dispute: therefore fear Allah and obey me.”
9:30 The Jews call Uzair (Ezra) a son of Allah (i.e. more important than the prophets), and the Christians call Christ the son of Allah... Allah's curse be on them: how they are deluded away from the truth.
5:72 They do blaspheme who say: “Allah is Christ the son of Mary.” But said Christ: “O Children of Israel! worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord.”
57:27 We sent after them Jesus the son of Mary, and bestowed on him the Gospel; and We ordained in the hearts of those who followed him Compassion and Mercy.
5:75 Christ the son of Mary was no more than a messenger; many were the messengers that passed away before him. His mother was a woman of truth. They had both to eat their (daily) food.
5:110 O Jesus the son of Mary! Recount My favour to thee and to thy mother. Behold! I strengthened thee with the holy spirit, so that thou didst speak to the people in childhood and in maturity... And behold! I did restrain the Children of Israel from (violence to) thee, when thou didst show them the clear Signs...
4:157 They killed him not, nor crucified him, but so it was made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts, with no (certain) knowledge, but only conjecture to follow, for of a surety they killed him not.
5:116 Allah will say: “O Jesus the son of Mary! Didst thou say unto men, worship me and my mother as gods in derogation of Allah’?” He will say: “Glory to Thee! never could I say what I had no right to say. Had I said such a thing, thou wouldst indeed have known it. Thou knowest what is in my heart...
9:31 They take their priests and their anchorites to be their lords in derogation of Allah...; yet they were commanded to worship but One God: there is no god but He...

Traditional Islam versus Intellectual Islam

''THE BOOK', as mentioned in the Quran, is NOT the Quran, but the religious scriptures of the Jews, the Roman Christians and the Gnostic Christians. The Quran was created after Muhammad's death (8 june 632 CE).
Calling the Quran 'the Book of God' is a form of blasphemy. The Quran is a product of Mohammed (a human being) and the angel Gabriel, who visited him during dreams and visions. Angels - like humans - are created by a creator. You cannot call them 'Gods'...
The Quran is utterly clear in that matter:
Don't call anyone or anything 'God'. Don't be a divider, but defend (like the prophets did) divine values, like freedom, equality and brotherhood...
The Quran is not written down by Muhammad. It is the revealed spoken word, that was preserved by memorization. At different times in Muhammed's life the recitations would come to him; he would then repeat what he had heard and these would be memorized by certain people trained in remembering verses; some of these verses were written down on whatever was at hand. All these writings were collected in the caliphate of 'Uthman and the canonical text was established around 650 A.D.
The oldest Qurans available today are the the Samarqand codex (currently located in Russia) and the other is an old Qur'an manuscript kept on public display in the Topkapi Museum in Istanbul.

The Curse Of The Law
Yuli Edelstein (Knesset speaker), YNet Opinion, 14.08.2016

It's essential to know when to keep away from cases when aspiration for totality is destructive.
It happens to us today more and more, when we become so entrenched in radicalized positions that lead to internal clashes and fierce hostility. These create deep rifts in our society, and I fear that unless we hit the emergency break, we'll fall into the abyss similar to the one that brought us the destruction of the Second Temple. Then, too, it began with extremism and dogmatism...

Those not accustomed to reading the texts dealing with the deep circumstances of the destruction of the temple might be surprised to read the Talmudic holding that Jerusalem was destroyed because "they judged Torah law therein."
That isn't a mistake: essentially, the destruction came to us because of the faulty norm of compliance with the law word for word.
The entire idea of "ex gratia" was foreign to them; there were no shades of grey, just black and white. ('Ex Gratia': used to describe something that is done or given freely rather than because it is required by a law).
Instead of our Torah being a living Torah and being a source for guidance, the prevailing spirit was to be "by the book," without taking into consideration the special circumstances and the reality that requires broad discretion.
We beard an unbearably high price for that extremism and literalism. The Midrash illustrates this and describes how the position of Rabbi Zecharia ben Avkulos took over, which insisted on adherence to the religious law word for word — despite the clear and present danger posed to the Jews under foreign Roman rule.
This stubbornness, which was expressed in the refusal to make a sacrifice from the emperor for the sake of "peace of the kingdom" — because thus it was written in Jewish law — was a symptom...

Paul (New Testament) versus Legalism
John Piper (Bethlehem Baptist Church Minnesota)

When PAUL says in a NEW TESTAMENT verse that "all who rely on works of the law are under a curse," it reminds us of 1:7, 8, where he says, "There are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ."
Evidently, Paul believed that there was a teaching among the churches of Galatia which was so destructive to people and so dishonoring to God that it merited a divine curse.
It was a teaching propagated not by secular humanists from Athens but by God-fearing Jewish "Christian" church members from Jerusalem.
The reason the book of Galatians has such a radical, life-changing message is that it pronounces a curse from God not on atheistic or agnostic outsiders but on professing Christians who try to serve God in a way that diminishes his grace and cultivates their own pride.
When verse 10 says that "those who rely on works of the law are under a curse," it means that they are without the Holy Spirit (Reason, Gnosis, Wisdom).

There is no Greek word for legalism. When Paul wanted to refer to the legalistic misuse of Moses' teaching, he either had to use the term "law" and trust that the context would clarify the meaning, "misuse of law"; or he had to use a phrase like "works of law" which for him always had a negative, legalistic meaning.
We know from the context of 2:18 that Paul distinguished what Moses really taught from what the Judaizers did with his teachings.

Liberman: Resistance is futile
Jerusalem Post, 18-8-2016

The Collective Is God

The Borg are a fictional alien race that appear as recurring antagonists in the Star Trek franchise. The Borg use a process called assimilation to force other species into the Collective, by injecting microscopic machines called nanoprobes. The Borg are driven by a need for 'perfection', and assimilate other races to further that goal. The Borg have become a symbol in popular culture for any juggernaut against which "resistance is futile". (Wikipedia)
Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman unveiled a new policy toward Palestinians based on the “carrot and stick” model – harsher punishment for families and villages from which terrorists originate and economic benefits for those areas that have not produced terrorists. “We will implement a differential policy in Judea and Samaria,” Liberman said. “Its purpose is to continue to give benefits to those who desire co-existence with us (i.e. acceptance of occupation) and make life difficult for those who seek to harm Jews” (i.e. defenders of Palestinian nationalism).
The minister added that “anyone who is prepared for co-existence will prosper, while those who opt for terrorism will lose.”
Liberman stressed that the new plan was made in coordination with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “I update the prime minister on every detail,” he stated.

According to the new policy, the defense establishment divided the [occupied] West Bank map into two parts – the main part marked on the map in green represented the areas from which no terrorists had come, while a smaller part, mainly in the southern West Bank from Hebron southward featured villages colored in red and yellow. The areas that will get benefits immediately are Beit Sahur, in which a hospital will be built; western Nablus, in which an industrial zone will be built; and Kafr Bidia, in which a soccer field will be built. Liberman added, however, that he does not intend to allow the Palestinians to build another city in the [occupied] West Bank.
The means of punishment for areas from where terrorism originates will include increased IDF activity in Area A of the [occupied] West Bank; home demolitions; increased arrests; raids on homes from which terrorists came; confiscation of terrorism funds and property; cancellation of VIP permits for senior Palestinian Authority officials taking part in incitement; increased vehicle searches at the Kalandiya refugee camp; and stricter enforcement against illegal building.
Liberman quoted Ze’ev Jabotinsky’s saying that you must be “a generous and cruel genius.”

One of the keys of the plan deals with the defense establishment’s desire to hold talks with Palestinian figures without mediation and without the approval of the Palestinian Authority.
“Our goal is to create a dialogue with anyone who wants to talk to us,” the minister stated. He added, however, that “we have no intention to crown kings in the PA or to interfere in internal affairs.”

Vladimir Jabotinsky: "I very emphatically urge our friends to have a more serious view of such principles as freedom of conscience and freedom of thought. I, for one, am not prepared to support the mania of banning spiritual quest, so long as it does not imply blasphemy against the basic principles of liberty, equality, and nationality."

China ‘to provide aid, enhance military training’ in Syria
Russia Today, 16 Aug, 2016

Beijing and Damascus have agreed that the Chinese military will provide humanitarian aid to Syria, a high-ranking People's Liberation Army officer said, adding that the training of Syrian personnel by Chinese instructors has also been discussed.
Director of the Office for International Military Cooperation of China's Central Military Commission, Guan Youfei, arrived in Damascus on Tuesday for talks with Syrian Defense Minister Fahad Jassim al-Freij, Chinese Xinhua news agency reported.
During the negotiation, Guan noted China’s consistent diplomatic efforts to find a political solution to the Syrian crisis, adding that Beijing is now seeking closer military ties with Damascus.
"The Chinese and Syrian militaries traditionally have a friendly relationship, and the Chinese military is willing to keep strengthening exchanges and cooperation with the Syrian military," he said.
Guan and al-Freij discussed the enhancement of training and "reached a consensus" on the Chinese military providing humanitarian aid to Syria, Xinhua reported, without providing further details.
Guan also met Lieutenant General Sergei Chvarkov, chief of the Russian centre for reconciliation of opposing sides in Syria.

Despite being a permanent UN Security Council member and relying on the Middle East for oil, China was previously reluctant to become involved in the Syrian conflict. Beijing preferred to concentrate on domestic affairs and the territorial dispute with its neighbors in the South China Sea.

The reality is an inversion of the propaganda lies
Mark Taliano, American Herald Tribune Opinion, 15-8-2016

"Ignorance will come to an end when everything is presented as it actually is"
Muammar Gaddafi, Green Book - Education

We know that each illegal war of conquest is prefaced by a public-relations-campaign that demonizes the target country’s leader and its government as it lies about on-the-ground realities.
Green became the national color of Libya under Gaddafi. It symbolized the predominant religion of Islam as well as Gaddafi’s “Third Universal Theory” as expounded in his Green Book, his book of political writings, published in 1975.

"Nationalism is the basis for the survival of nations. Nations whose nationalism is destroyed are subject to ruin. Minorities, which are one of the main political problems in the world, are the outcome. They are nations whose nationalism has been destroyed and which are thus torn apart."
Muammar Gaddafi, for example, was presented to Western media consumers as a lunatic and despot. The Western narratives, however, were contradicted by the fact that he earned broad-based support from Libyans, all of whom enjoyed public services such as free healthcare and schooling, and a high standard of living.
The same demonization campaign is being waged against Bashar al-Assad, the democratically–elected President of Syria. They teach us that he is an evil dictator who kills his own people, and that “he must go”...
Henry Lowendorf, a member of the Executive Board of the U.S Peace Council’s Peace and Fact-Finding Delegation to Syria -- recently returned from Syria -- repudiates the Western media’s demonization campaign against the government of President Assad and the Syrian Arab Army in these words:

“When you go to Syria, which I did last month, the popularity of the government and the Syrian Arab Army is rampant. It's not out of some dream fantasy. It comes obviously from the government and the army being the only thing between living a secular life on the one hand and the hatred and violence of ISIS and the various other terrorist groups underwritten by the terrorist Saudis and US and their allies on the other.
The refugees who don't leave Syria do not flee to the terrorist side, they flee to the government side, in huge numbers. So would all of us in similar circumstances. Syrians do not want their country turned into Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Sudan, Somalia, or any of the other countries the US has liberated.”

The reality is an inversion of the propaganda lies fed to Western audiences. President Assad must stay, for the sake of civilization, and for the sake of destroying Western-backed terrorism. Each time 'the Empire' succeeds in destroying another country, the problem of terrorism worsens – as might be expected...
The propaganda lies, the false flags, the terrorist-embedded NGOs and the use of terrorist proxies to criminally destroy one country after another, is not only empowering terrorism world-wide, but it is also leading us to engineered conflict with nuclear-armed countries, in particular, Russia.
Whereas the propaganda lies further the causes of barbarity and ignorance, we need a redirection towards the polar opposite: towards trajectories that support civilization, progress, and the rule of law.
We need to shift from Death Industries of the Military Industrial Complex, to Life Industries that serve, rather than destroy, humanity.
We also need a strong anti-war movement based on a broad-based support of the truth, and a broad-based rejection of the “governing” lies.

2.4 Million in Libya Need Aid, U.N. Says on World Humanitarian Day
by Naharnet Newsdesk, 20-8-2016

The U.N. used World Humanitarian Day on Friday to plead for help for Libya, saying millions of Libyans and migrants were engulfed in a worsening crisis.
"More than 2.4 million people in Libya are in need of humanitarian assistance," Martin Kobler, the U.N. secretary-general's special representative for Libya, said in a statement. "They lack medicines, vaccinations and suffer from poor hospitalization services. Almost 300,000 children are out of schools and almost 350,000 Libyans are displaced within the country."
Kobler also noted the predicament of more than 270,000 migrants who fled their home countries and are stranded in Libya.
"The humanitarian needs created by the crisis in Libya are enormous and this should serve as an incentive for us to do our utmost to give hope to the people, particularly those in urgent need of humanitarian assistance," he added.
The ouster of Moamer Kadhafi in 2011 plunged Libya into chaos, with rival militias jockeying violently for power.
The latest fighting is centered on the coastal city of Sirte, where pro-government forces are pressing an assault against the jihadist Islamic State group.

Muammar Gaddafi: Message to Tony Blair, 2011

US State Dept.: 'A Unified Front'
By Rudaw, 19-8-2016

WASHINGTON DC- Following a controversial statement by Iraqi prime minister Haider al-Abadi earlier this week that Kurdish Peshmerga forces must not advance towards Mosul when the battle for that city is launched, Mark Toner, deputy US State Dept. spokesperson said that the Peshmerga must be under the command of the Iraqi government.
I think it’s absolutely important, and we’ve emphasized this all along, that the Peshmerga and all the various fighting groups in Iraq need to be under the command and control of the Iraqi Government and the Iraqi military.” Toner told Rudaw at a press briefing on Thursday.
“I think that there just needs to be closer coordination between – and we’ve encouraged that and, indeed, it has taken place. Thus far, there have been these meetings as they look towards Mosul, and frankly, the next steps in liberating Iraq from ISIL.” Toner added.
The deputy state dept. spokesperson went on to acknowledge the vital role the Peshmerga forces have played in the wear against the Islamic State (ISIS) in the last two years.
He said: “There needs to be that coordination mechanism. But we certainly recognize, and we’ve said so many times, the vital role that these groups, including the Peshmerga, play and have played thus far and showed tremendous courage in liberating parts of Iraq that have been under the control of ISIL.” Toner explained that US efforts continue to bring the Kurds and Iraqis together into a united front for the battle of Mosul.
We engage regularly with Kurdistan Regional Government and Baghdad to advocate and encourage a unified front in the face of the continuing threat of Daesh or ISIL..."

Syrian Army General Command:
Provocations by Asayish took more dangerous turn,
Syrian Arab News Agency, 19 August 2016

Damascus, SANA – The General Command of the Army and Armed Forces said that the Asayish, the military wing of the Kurdistan Workers Party, has recently escalated its provocative actions in Hasaka city, attacking state establishments, stealing oil and cotton, disrupting examinations, carrying out abductions, and causing a state of chaos and instability. In a statement on Friday, the General Command said that these actions took a more dangerous turn as the Asayish encircled Hasaka city, shelled it with artillery and tanks, and targeted Syrian Arab Army positions in it, claiming the lives of a number of military personnel and civilians.
The General Command said that the Asayish did not respond to all the attempts that were made to contain the situation and restore security and stability to the city; instead they persisted in carrying out their crimes in a bid to seize control of the city, which required the a suitable response by Syrian Arab Army as it targeted the sources of artillery fire and the gatherings of armed elements responsible for these criminal actions.
The statement clarified that the recurring attacks on citizens and the Syrian Arab Army are carried out exclusively by the Asayish and are not related to any specific Syrian component, affirming at the same time that it will respond to any such attack by any side and exert efforts to prevent the situation from escalating in order to preserve Syria’s territorial integrity and the safety of Syrian citizens.

US State Department emphasizes:
“YPG and PKK are separate entities”
ARA News, March 25, 2016

AKRE – The United States government continues to see the People’s Protection Forces (YPG) and the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) as separate entities, the US State Department Deputy Spokesperson Mark C. Toner said in response to comments of Masoud Barzani, the president of the Kurdistan region of Iraq.
The president of the Kurdistan region Masoud Barzani said in an interview on Tuesday that there is no difference between the YPG, and the PKK.
“Any support to the PYD [political leadership of YPG] means support for the PKK,” he told Al Monitor’s Amberin Zaman. “They are exactly one and the same thing.” “They [Americans] know very well, but they don’t want to say they know very well. … You know the top priority for us and the Americans is the fight against ISIS, so they might turn a blind eye,” he said.
In a reaction, Mr. Toner said that the US will stay committed to their policy of supporting the YPG, while condemning the PKK.
“We view the PKK as a foreign terrorist organization. We condemn the violence that it carries out against Turkish civilians and citizens,” Toner said.
“And separately, we have been working with the PYD – or YPG, rather, in parts of Syria as part of a number of groups we’re working with who are actively fighting and dislodging Daesh or ISIL from territory it controls,” he added.
“That doesn’t mean we haven’t had disagreements with them when they try to hold territory or not – or declare semi-autonomous self-rule zones. We disagree with them on that and we have frank discussions with them about that,” he added.
“But they are part of a number of groups that have been very effective in taking the fight against – or taking the fight, rather, to Daesh. I respect his [Barzani’s] opinion, just as we respect and listen to the Turkish authorities when they express their concerns to us, but we still view those [YPG and PKK] as two separate entities,” he stated.

The fight for women’s rights continues in Tunisia
"We want to eradicate the culture of violence"
The Arab Weekly, Roua Khlifi, 21-8-2016

The Revolution and Women in Iraq
by Saddam Hussein, 1981

The complete emancipation of women from the ties which held them back in the past, during the ages of despotism and ignorance, is a basic aim of the Party and the Revolution.
Women make up one half of society... Our society will remain backward and in chains unless its women are liberated, enlightened and educated. (Chapter 1)
Strengthening the economic status of women through both legal rights and social conventions is part of the liberation process... The expansion of education and the provision of equal opportunities for men and women is another move in that direction. More important than anything is the liberation of women through active work and sincere participation in the reconstruction of society...

Antifeminist acts and ideas should be extensively condemned by men as well as by women in every section of our people. (Chapter 4).

"For the people who havn't read `Zabiba and the king` It might come as a surprise, but Saddam always believed in feminism and emancipation of the women." Rusty Shackleford

read more: saddam's death, page 16

Tunisia celebrated National Women’s Day by marking the 60th anniversary of the adoption of the Code of Personal Status, a series of laws that greatly improved the standing of women in post-independence Tunisia.
Tunisian civil society organisations are lobbying for a new law to defend women against violence. Samira Merai Friaa, Tunisian minister of Women, Family and Children Affairs, has said a comprehensive law fighting violence against women would be submitted to parliament.
“This law will be of a great importance as it will change mentality and behaviours,” Friaa said. “We want to eradicate the culture of violence. We must change this and that is why the law encompasses preventive, protective and penalising aspects.”
The draft law comes after an alarming study released in March by the Tunisian Centre for Research, Studies, Documentation and Information on Women (Credif). The study said 53.5% of Tunisian women were subject to a form of violence in the public space from 2011-15 and 47.6% were subject to domestic violence.

The measure is based on Article 46 of the Tunisian constitution, which calls for guaranteeing gender equality and protection of women’s rights.
Credif Director Dalenda Larguech said the bill was adopted by the Council of Ministers in July and would be submitted for a parliamentary vote soon.
Violence is widespread in both private and public space,” Larguech said. “In the public space, the situation is alarming as we hear of cases of violence every day. Women are subject to forms of violence everywhere. The penal code cannot respond to all these cases.”
She added: “Because they are women, they are paid less. Because they are women, they are harassed on public transportation. Because they are women, their husbands beat them.” “Socially, women are still inferior to men. They are treated in an unfair way and not in a human way.”
Monia Ben Jemia, president of the Tunisian Association of Democratic Women (ATFD), argued that the draft law concerns all government bodies, not just those directly addressing women’s issues. “All ministries are involved in the proposal,” she said. “The Education Ministry should include material in their curricula to educate the young generation on violence...

Do not hate the individuals who do evil, hate only the evil deed itself
Saddam Hussein, Last Will, 26-12-2006

(Quran 25: 72) As a general rule the servants of Merciful God remain away from all kind of absurdities
and would bypass nonsense with dignity

O brothers and great people, I call on you to preserve the ideals that made you worthy of being believers, of being the bright lamp of civilization, and of belonging to the land that gave birth to the father of prophets, Abraham, and also of other prophets. These ideals have made you the bearer of the official and authentic greatness...
I call on you not to hate the peoples of the countries that have committed aggression on us. I call on you to distinguish between the decision-makers and the people.
Hate only the deed. Even if someone's deeds deserve to be fought and combated, do not hate him as a human being. Do not hate the individuals who do evil, hate only the evil deed itself, and repel that evil as it deserves.
Firmness is a must whenever necessary. However, in order that firmness is acceptable to the people and the nation, it ought to be on the basis of the law, and to be fair and just, and not aggressive and based on malice or illegitimate ambitions.

Hasaka Governor: Damascus Gov't Welcomes Kurds' Cooperation in Administering Syria
FARS News Agency, Sun Aug 21, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA) - Governor of the Kurdish-populated Province of Hasaka Mohammad Za'al al-Ala underlined that his government surely welcomes any initiative by the Kurdish groups to take part in the administration of Syria, stressing that Hasaka is a part of Syria and population are entitled to the right to have a share in ruling the country.
"The Syrian government has always supported Kurds and it will remain to do so, and we promise to settle all differences," al-Ala told FNA on Sunday.
He, meantime, pointed to the recent clashes between the Kurdish group, Asayesh, and the National Defense Forces (NDF) who are fighting alongside the Syrian army, and said, "Resorting to force will not help resolve the differences."
Al-Ala said that the Asayesh forces blocked Hasaka-Qamishli road last week and prevented the military, police and security forces from joining other forces due to certain differences with the NDF.
"Following these incidents the two sides' commanders agreed to a ceasefire after mediations and holding a 5-hour meeting in Hasaka governor's office," he added.
The Hasaka governor said that Asayesh had asked for dissolving the NDF and non-interference of the government in areas under their control, but the governor's office seriously opposed their demands and Asayesh threatened to violate the ceasefire by insisting on their demands...
He underlined that if Kurds have conditions for participating in administering the country, the government will not oppose them, but they should be patient and try to resolve their differences through dialogue and not the language of force.

Turkish FM vows to ‘wipe out’ all of Turkey’s enemies
By Rudaw, 23-8-2016

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu warned that Ankara will wipe out the Gulen movement, the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and Islamic State (ISIS), cleansing them from Turkey and beyond.
“Traitors should know this: FETO (the Gulen movement), PKK, PYD (Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party), YPG (Syrian Kurdish Peoples’ Protection Units), Daesh (ISIS) -- we will cleanse them all from our country and wipe out all of them,” he declared Sunday, at a memorial service for those who died in a failed July 15 coup attempt.
“Members of FETO had tanks and helicopters on the night of the coup attempt. They were bombing and shooting at our people with sharpshooters from the high hills,” he said, according to Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news.
Cavusoglu alleged that the PKK is the Gulen movement’s twin brother... and works together with them, and the PKK’s extension in Syria, the YPG, PYD, Daesh that target Turkey by misusing our religion, and ISIS traitors should not forget this:
"You may have subcontracted to some people. Your masters wanted to occupy this country, these territories but they could not. Now they use you as a tool and subcontractor. We will wipe out you too.”
“You cannot divide this country. You attack dastardly, kill innocent, civilian people dastardly,” Cavusoglu said, before going on to condemn the PKK as “separatists and traitors.”
“We will fight against them both in Turkish territories, and in Iraq and Syria where they live, and anywhere, even in Iran,” Cavusoglu vowed.

We will not support separatism
Turkey v PKK - in quotes (BBC, 25-4-2016):

Ilnur Cevik, chief adviser to Turkey's President Erdogan: "What they [the PKK] are doing at the moment is trying to create a separate state in Turkey. This is outright secession. "We are going to struggle right to the bitter end to stop this. And the Turkish people are now determined - public opinion polls say. They say, 'don't stop'."

PKK leader Cemil Bayik: "He [President Erdogan] wants the Kurds to surrender. If they don't surrender, he wants to kill all Kurds. He says this openly - he doesn't hide it.
"The Kurds will defend themselves to the end, so long as this is the Turkish approach - of course the PKK will escalate the war. Not only in Kurdistan, but in the rest of Turkey as well."

The following countries have listed or otherwise labelled the PKK in an official capacity as a terrorist organization:
Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Canada, Czech Republic, Germany, Iran, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, Syria, USA.

The New Anti-Iran Coalition
KDPI leader describes Iran as a Shiite ISIS
By Rudaw, 23-8-2016

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — Iran has left no breathing space for the country’s several million Kurds through repressions, disregarding all cultural and political rights and seeing everything through a security lens, said Mustafa Hejri, the leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI) in Erbil on Monday; therefore it is time to confront Tehran which is as dangerous as the Islamic State (ISIS)...
Hejri said that dealing with Iran for almost four decades including a unilateral ceasefire has shown them and the world that Tehran does not believe in giving the Kurds or the country’s other minorities any of their rights...
Hejri said that pressure has worked well on Tehran in the past to make it accept the terms of the others, citing the examples of the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s and recent sanctions imposed on Iran by the West that eventually brought Tehran to the negotiating table and a deal.
“So this tells us that if there is some force on the Islamic Republic it is possible that it will accept the demands of the Kurdish people, to a degree,” Hejri argued. “And for that force to work, before anything else, the Kurdish struggle inside Iran has to become a real and effective thing.”
He went on to describe the Iranian government as a Shiite Daesh, the local term for the Islamic State (ISIS) which he said was as dangerous as the extremist Sunni group.

Despite being the oldest Kurdish party in Iran and vowing resumption of armed struggle against Tehran, Hejri admitted at the panel that his party wouldn’t be able to go at it alone and needs the involvement of all other Kurdish groups. “Our purpose behind resuming the armed struggle is for our fighters to be inside the cities, boost people’s morale, learn the terrain and encourage them to get involved in this struggle,” Hejri said.

They want to redesign the Middle East
After 20-year break Iranian Kurds are taking up arms again
Mahmut Bozarslan, Al-Monitor, 1-7-2016

Political analyst Siddik Hassan Sukru, who lives in Erbil, Iraq, told Al-Monitor that the clashes are conjunctural and signal the beginning of a new era.
He said, “In Iran you don’t see a Kurdish strategy that uses weapons to ensure rights. They don’t seem to have a loud voice within ideology and human rights. Their conservative policies continue as before. I don’t think they can sustain a war. They have good relations with Turkey and Saudi Arabia and also the KDP of Northern Iraq.
There is a historical conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran. Iran wants to be the leader, just like the Saudis. Israel operates in secret in the area. They wanted to redesign the Middle East through [IS] but that didn’t work. [IS] has lost. It hasn’t become a power in the Middle East and the world, but remained a terror outfit. Those who supported them now want to get rid of them.
Now they want to consolidate the Kurdish conservatives in Syria, Turkey, Iran and Iraq under the guise of Kurdishness, but it is too late."

He added, “It will not work. Qatar, Saudi Arabia and some European countries supported such a redesign with Turkey as a model. But the project collapsed when Islamist terrorists emerged.
Now they only rely on the possibility of an independent Kurdish state. Erdogan, Israel and the Saudis made them promises. They wanted to set up a Salafi Wahhabi state against Iran in Syria and Iraq. Turkey wanted them to fight against the [Kurdistan Workers Party] while Israel and Saudi Arabia wanted the Kurds to fight Iran. It didn’t work.”

As the clashes continue, the KDPI said in an online statement that it will step up its attacks.
Sukru does not believe this is feasible. He said, “I don’t think they can conduct major operations, given the military and political realities.... They are not all that strong among the youth. It is a migrating movement. They fight for two months and then go home. They can launch a guerrilla war. Iran so far has not responded against Iraqi Kurdistan, although the Iranian Kurds have been using that territory [to launch attacks]. Iran has been careful not to damage its ties with the Kurdistan Region of Iraq."

The U.S. Creates More Chaos
Soon everyone will be fighting everyone else
Moon of Alabama, August 22, 2016

Last week a Chinese admiral visited Damascus and promised support. The Indian Minister of State for External Affairs also passed by. The Turkish deputy intelligence chief was there for secret talks. Earlier the Turkish president visited Russia and the Turkish foreign minister visited Tehran. Those are a lot of talks between big and important countries and players in the conflict over Syria. None of them, not even Barzani, is in the U.S. camp.

Is the United States a force for democracy?
If you flip over the rock of American foreign policy of the past century, this is what crawls out…:
invasions … bombings … overthrowing governments … occupations … suppressing movements for social change … assassinating political leaders … perverting elections … manipulating labor unions … manufacturing “news” … death squads … torture … biological warfare … depleted uranium … drug trafficking … mercenaries... (

I assume that this outbreak of diplomacy, which bypassed Washington, led to concern that the U.S. might be left out of a resolution in Syria. It had to play a card of its own. That is the most likely explanation for the sudden clashes in Hasakah where the Syrian Kurdish YPG is suddenly determined to kick out the Syrian army garrison that protects the Arab population there. U.S. special forces are "advising" these Kurds.
The Syrian army garrison is cut off and the Kurds are well able to overwhelm it. They issued an ultimatum to the Syrian soldiers to either lay down arms or to die. The aim of this move is the creation of north-eastern block in Syria that is completely under Kurdish control.. This would give the U.S. at least some control over the future of Syria.
Somehow the U.S. must have talked or bribed the YPG Kurds into creating this statelet in north-eastern Syria. I believe that this is a severe miscalculation by the Kurds which they will come to rue. The U.S. is not a reliable friend and it will not defend the Kurds should the other actors turn against them with their whole might...
The Russians are currently trying to negotiate a new ceasefire in Hasakah and may well apply some pressure of their own.
Earlier in the conflict it was the Syrian army and the Russians who supplied and supported the Kurds with weapons and ammunition to defend themselves against the Islamic State and the U.S. supported "moderate rebels". To now turn against these benefactors is treason.

The U.S. meddling in Syria is creating more and more chaos. Is that the intent?
Whatever - one can hope that those large, grown up, older nations - Russia, India, China and Iran - now align their plans and steer this conflict towards some saner, bearable solution...

Agreement to halt fighting in Hasaka
SANA, 23 August 2016

Hasaka, SANA – An agreement to halt fighting was agreed in the northeastern Hasaka province that came into effect at 14:00 p.m. on Tuesday, the Syrian TV reported.
All roads in the city will also be opened according to the agreement. It was also agreed on work to resolve the Kurdish issue and start discussions to address the situation of the discharged state employees.
During the past days, the Asayish, the military wing of the Kurdistan Workers Party, has escalated its provocative actions in Hasaka city, attacking state establishments, stealing oil and cotton, disrupting examinations, carrying out abductions, and causing a state of chaos and instability.
The provocations amounted to encircling Hasaka city, shelling it with artillery and tanks and targeting the Syrian Arab Army positions in it, claiming the lives of a number of military personnel and civilians...

Resetting Turkey’s Syria policy
Semih Idiz, Al-Monitor, 23-8-2016

Months of speculation about Turkey inching toward a radical change in its Syrian policy have finally ended.
On Aug. 20, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim officially announced Ankara’s new policy, which aims to settle the crisis with the involvement of all the key players, including Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
This about-face had been in the making since Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hinted a year ago that a transition period in Syria could include Assad. Prior to that, Ankara had taken the hard-line position that there was no room for Assad in any shape or form in Syria's future.

Turkey’s resetting of its Syria policy comes on the heels of its reconciliation with Russia earlier this month. The radical change in Ankara’s approach also follows a decision to improve ties with Iran and to initiate a new dialogue on Syria with Moscow and Tehran.
The Yildirim government is also acknowledging that Ankara’s former policy was out of touch with the reality in Syria.
Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus was quoted extensively after telling a group of reporters and academics that all of Turkey’s present troubles were rooted in Syria. “Much of what has befallen us is the result of the situation in Syria and our Syria policy,” Kurtulmus said during the Aug. 17 meeting. “This applies to others too, but we were also unable to put forward a valid policy [on Syria].”
The Islamist supporters of Erdogan and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) are unlikely to be happy with this turn of events given the extent to which Assad was systematically demonized in Turkey.
They have already had to swallow a bitter pill with Turkey’s decision to reconcile with Israel. There is also, however, a new sense of realism among these supporters.
Akif Emre, a well-known Islamist columnist from the pro-government daily Yeni Safak, for example, argued that the bloody situation in Syria, and the major headache this poses for Turkey, has to be addressed above all other considerations.

Yildirim told a group of foreign reporters on Aug. 20 [..] that Turkey would be much more active over this period, to ensure that the threat from Syria does not increase, and went on to list the key elements of Ankara’s new policy as follows:

• preventing Syria from being divided along ethnic lines;
• preventing Syria from being governed by a single ethnic entity;
• securing fair representation for Arabs, Kurds, Alevis and other minorities in any settlement; and
• working with Iran, Saudi Arabia, the United States and Russia for a settlement to the crisis.
Yildirim’s most striking remarks, however, concerned Assad... “Whether we like it or not, Assad is one of the actors.”
Yildirim’s words spelled the definitive end of Erdogan and the AKP’s initial dream of elections in Syria that would propel the majority Sunnis to power under a government led by the Muslim Brotherhood.

Saudi based Salafist preacher Adnan Al-Aroor became widely known and promoted after the start of the Syrian Public Revolution. Aroor fled Syria following the 1982 rebellion in Hama. The Syrian Muslim Brotherhood, a branch of a radical Sunni movement founded in Egypt in 1928, engaged in more than a decade of violent opposition to the regime of Hafez Assad. In 1982, the Brotherhood took control of the city of Hama.

Fehmi Koru, a seasoned conservative commentator, believes that the cadres that crafted Ankara’s failed Syria policy seriously underestimated Assad. “
They got bogged down in one aspect of the Baathist regime of 40 years standing [namely, the fact that it was a Nusairi/Alawite structure that excluded Sunnis] and overlooked the fact that [Assad] had over the years gained a status over and above ethnic and sectarian divisions,” Koru wrote in his widely read blog.
“Influenced by this outlook, our foreign policy was based on the assumption that the Assad regime would not survive long and a regime close to Turkey could come to power in Damascus.”
Soli Ozel, from the Kadir Has University in Istanbul and a foreign affairs commentator for daily Haberturk, believes that the change in policy should have been made three years ago, but was delayed due to the approach of Ahmet Davutoglu, first as foreign minister and later as prime minister.

Syria regime, Kurds blast Turkish "Euphrates Shield" operation
Middle East Online, 24-8-2016

DAMASCUS - The foreign ministry in Damascus said it "condemns the crossing of the Turkey-Syria border by Turkish tanks and armoured vehicles towards the Jarabulus area with air cover from the US-led coalition and considers it a flagrant violation of Syrian sovereignty".
The operation -- named "Euphrates Shield" -- began around 4:00 am (0100 GMT) with Turkish artillery pounding dozens of targets of the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group around Jarabulus, the Turkish prime minister's office said.
Turkish tanks and special forces accompanied by pro-Ankara Syrian rebels then rolled across the border in an unprecedented operation to drive IS out of Jarabulus, from which it has fired rockets into Turkey.

- "Syria demands the end of this aggression," the foreign ministry said. "Any party conducting a battle against terrorism on Syrian soil must do so in coordination with the Syrian government and the Syrian army who have been fighting this war for five years. "Chasing out IS and replacing them with terrorist groups backed by Turkey is not fighting terrorism."
- The semi-autonomous Kurdish administration, which controls much of the border regions in north and northeast Syria, angrily branded Turkey's intervention a "declaration of war". "The Turkish government has abandoned its policy regarding the (Syrian) regime and now finds itself on the same side," it said in a statement.
- The Istanbul-based opposition National Coalition, however, hailed the Turkish intervention and stressed that rebel forces were doing the fighting on the ground. It issued a statement welcoming "the support of Turkey and the international coalition for the military operation in Jarabulus", in which "the rebels are carrying out the combat operations".

In Ankara on Wednesday, visiting US Vice President Joe Biden said Washington had made it clear that Kurdish-led forces in Syria must not deploy west of the Euphrates River.
"We have made it absolutely clear... that they must go back across the river," Biden said at a news conference with Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim. "They cannot, will not and under no circumstances (will) get American support if they do not keep that commitment. Period."

Operation Euphrates Shield to Continue Until YPG Retreats, PM Yıldırım Says
İngilizce Haberler, Turkishny, 24-8-2016

The operation led by Turkey to liberate Syria's Jarablus from Daesh terrorists will continue until elements of the PKK's Syrian affiliate YPG retreats to the east bank of Euphrates, Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said on Wednesday.
Speaking at a live interview on Habertürk TV shortly after meeting U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, Yıldırım said that it is necessary to cleanse Jarablus of terrorist PKK-affiliated groups including the PYD and YPG. "This was a pledge, a guarantee of the U.S." Yıldırım said.
He continued by saying that the timing of the operation has nothing to do with KRG President Masoud Barzani or U.S. Vice President Joe Biden's visit to Turkey.
Yıldırım also said that it is necessary to protect Syria's territorial integrity and that it would be a disaster if all ethnic groups wanted to establish their own state.
"The situation would be worse than today if every single ethnic group established a state" he said, adding that Turkey is already paying the price of the conflict in Syria by hosting over three million Syrians and that it is necessary for these people to return to a normal life as soon as possible.
The Prime Minister also highlighted that even though Turkey does not see Assad as part of a permanent solution in Syria, it could still accept Assad as one of the sides. He added that Turkey urges all sides including Iran and Russia to come together and find a solution to the ongoing conflict in Syria.

The Russian Foreign Ministry called on the Turkish regime to coordinate the fight against terrorism with the Syrian government on the border between the two countries.

A diplomatic source in the ministry said that the Russian officials see the importance of the fight against terrorism in the border areas between Syria and Turkey more than ever, but at the same time they emphasize the importance of coordinating Ankara’s activities with Damascus because that is the most important factor in the effectiveness of these actions.
Earlier on Wednesday, Turkish tanks and armored vehicles crossed the Syrian-Turkish borders towards Jarablos city under cover of the US-led alliance’s air forces in order to wrest the city from the control of ISIS terrorist organization and deliver it to other terrorist groups that operate under the command of Washington and Ankara. (Breaking News Network - Agencies, 2016-08-24)

Iran's theatre scene and the rehabilitation of Mossadeq
Jonathan Steele, Middle East Eye, 25 August 2016

TEHRAN - Iranian theatre-goers have been hurrying to see a play which focuses on one of the major events of the country’s recent history, the coup d’etat orchestrated by Britain against the elected government of Mohammad Mossadeq in 1953.
At Tehran’s Vahdat theatre, a sell-out crowd watched the final performance of a five-week run on Friday, the 63rd anniversary of Mossadeq’s downfall, but the play has been so popular that a new set of shows is planned for the autumn, according to Asghar Khalili, the play’s writer and director.
Mossadeq became a national hero in 1951 when his government nationalised the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, a move which cemented the country’s drive for economic as well as political independence. It inspired Egypt’s leader, Gamal Abdul Nasser, to take over the Suez Canal five years later, another move which Britain opposed with force in the dying years of its imperial power.
After the 1979 Islamic revolution and the fall of the pro-Western Shah, Iran’s religious leaders made 20 March, the oil nationalisation day, an annual public holiday.
Yet despite this commemoration, school textbooks only treat Mossadeq briefly. “We need more efforts to make him more popular and better-known..." Khalili told MEE.

In Iran, the coup has left a legacy of suspicion towards Britain, which is sometimes seen in a worse light than the so-called Great Satan, the United States. But many British politicians are unaware of it.
Fifteen years ago when Jack Straw, as foreign secretary, made strenuous efforts to open relations with the Iranian government after the notoriously anti-Iranian George W Bush came to power in the US, Prime Minister Tony Blair told an interviewer he did not know anything about the 1953 coup.
Britain under Winston Churchill reacted to the end of its 60-year exploitation of Iran’s oil first by withdrawing its engineers from the oil fields and dispatching the Royal Navy to intercept tankers carrying Iranian oil bought by foreign companies. It then tried to get the Shah to dismiss Mossadeq who was taking steps to reduce the Shah’s power over the Iranian armed forces. But with a majority of politicians in parliament and much of the public behind him, Mossadeq was too popular for the Shah to act against him.
Instead, the Shah left for Italy. Churchill and US president, Dwight Eisenhower, decided that the best solution was to topple the elected government and restore the Shah’s autocratic rule.
The coup was organised by Britain’s MI6 and America's CIA.. They paid agents to mobilise crowds for and against Mossadeq, and promote clashes in the streets of Tehran. Dissident generals and other officers, dismissed by Mossadeq, then stepped in, ostensibly to restore law and order, but in fact to arrest Mossadeq, close parliament and bring the Shah back to power. Mossadeq was tried for treason and put under house arrest until his death in 1967.

Some analysts have suggested that the relative lack of attention in today’s Iran to Mossadeq’s status as a one-time national hero is that he was secular. Khalili denies that, arguing that Mossadeq called himself a Shia Muslim and was buried according to Shia rites.
But he was a liberal democrat. “Under him there was greater freedom of speech for two and a half years than at any other time during the Shah’s rule,” the director said.
Khalili's play has received generous media attention and positive reviews. Hadi Khamenei, a well known liberal cleric and former MP who is the younger brother of Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, came to the play on the second night and publicly urged people to watch it.

'God' is a Right-Winger
Flashback: The devils game - The US & 'the Islamic right'
Robert Dreyfuss 2005

For half a century the United States and many of its allies saw what I call the “Islamic right” as convenient partners in the Cold War.
Muslim fundamentalists on the far right were often viewed as allies for two reasons, because they were seen a fierce anti-communists and because they opposed secular nationalists such as Egypt’s Gamal Abdel Nasser, Iran’s Mohammed Mossadegh.

By the end of the 1950s, rather than allying itself with the secular forces of progress in the Middle East and the Arab world, the United States found itself in league with Saudi Arabia’s Islamist legions.
Choosing Saudi Arabia over Nasser’s Egypt was probably the single biggest mistake the United States has ever made in the Middle East.
A second big mistake … occurred in the 1970s, when, at the height of the Cold War and the struggle for control of the Middle East, the United States either supported or acquiesced in the rapid growth of Islamic right in countries from Egypt to Afghanistan.
In Egypt, Anwar Sadat brought the Muslim Brotherhood back to Egypt. In Syria, the United States, Israel, and Jordan supported the Muslim Brotherhood in a civil war against Syria. And … Israel quietly backed Ahmed Yassin and the Muslim Brotherhood in the West Bank and Gaza, leading to the establishment of Hamas....
Would the Islamic right have existed without U.S. support? Of course. ... But there is no question that the virulence of the movement that we now confront would have been significantly less had the United States made other choices...

more info: saddam's death, page 46

The Rich Against The Poor
The Hypocrisy of the West's Alliance With Saudi Arabia
Sputnik News, 26-8-2016

Days after over 100,000 Yemenis rallied in Sanaa against Saudi Arabia for the latter’s continued shelling campaign, US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Riyadh to discuss the ongoing bloodbath.
The founder of the UK-based Islamic Human Rights Commission, Massoud Shadjareh, spoke with Radio Sputnik about Western involvement and possible outcomes of the war.
Iran, accused by the Saudis of supporting the Houthi political opposition faction throughout the war, hasn’t got any influence on conflict in Yemen, he said. “There’s a total blockade of sea, and [Iranian] weapons cannot get through, personnel cannot get through. Iran has no air forces involved,” Shadjareh noted, offering that the real driving force of the hostilities in Yemen is Saudi Arabia that has been shelling the country since March 2015.
To justify its attempted invasion, the Saudis used the pretext of spreading democracy, which is patently absurd, given that Saudi Arabia is an absolute monarchy, and it practices executions and widely oppresses women, Shadjareh said.
Riyadh “wants to be a regional power” and has instigated a number of conflicts, including those in Bahrain, Syria and Yemen, he said. “They want to strengthen themselves so as to ensure the continuation of the royal family’s dictatorship.”
The Saudi’s real goal in sending troops Yemen, he said, is to place a puppet president in power who will obey Riyadh.
“Here we’ve got one of the richest countries in the region, or in the world, attacking one of the poorest countries, destroying infrastructure and killing children,” he said..

Concurrently, “the international community, that is supposed to be the peak of democracy and justice, is involved in it,” Shadjareh stated. “Saudi Arabia couldn’t possibly get engaged in this sort of war without such support,” he said.
Among the reasons prompting Americans and Britons to turn a blind eye to the “carnage and international law violations” currently being committed in Yemen by the Saudis is the aggressive sale of weapons by the West... “There are no economic reasons, other than the sale of arms. There’s no oil, geopolitical interest for the US or the UK there. So it really goes back to old-fashioned corruption.”
In spite of the far-reaching support of the Western allies, the Saudis are stuck in a quagmire similar to that being experienced by the US in Afghanistan. The Houthi faction, disorganized at the beginning of the war, have become a “fighting machine, manufacturing weapons and being able to sustain themselves, despite all the blockades that had been imposed.”
The Saudis are “too arrogant and don’t want to accept a defeat”... Riyadh will drag on the war, refusing to negotiate or discuss peace, which is the only intelligent exit strategy left to the House of Saud.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei considers Victor Hugo supreme

As a young man, Ali Khamenei (Iran's spiritual leader) loved novels. He read such Iranian writers as Muhammad Ali Jamalzadah, Sadeq Chubak, and Sadeq Hedayat but came to feel that they paled before classic Western writers from France, Russia, and the United Kingdom. He has praised Leo Tolstoy and Mikhail Sholokhov and likes Honoré de Balzac and Michel Zévaco, but he considers Victor Hugo supreme. As he told some officials of Iran’s state-run television network in 2004:

"In my opinion, Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables is the best novel that has been written in history...
Les Misérables is a miracle in the world of novel writing. ... I have said over and over again, go read Les Misérables once. This Les Misérables is a book of sociology, a book of history, a book of criticism, a divine book, a book of love and feeling."
“Read the novels of some authors with leftist tendencies, such as Howard Fast,” he advised an audience of writers and artists in 1996. “Read the famous book The Grapes of Wrath, written by John Steinbeck, ... and see what it says about the situation of the left and how the capitalists of the so-called center of democracy treated them.” (Saddam's Death, Page 74)

US Weapons Sales Are Drenched in Yemeni Blood
by Medea Benjamin,, August 26, 2016

When Pope Francis visited the US Congress in September 2015, he boldly posed a moral challenge to his American hosts, asking: “Why are deadly weapons being sold to those who plan to inflict untold suffering on individuals and society?”
“Sadly, the answer, as we all know, is simply for money,” he solemnly concluded. “Money that is drenched in blood.”
In this case, it’s innocent Yemeni blood.
During his almost eight years in office, President Obama has approved a jaw-dropping, record-breaking $110 billion in weapons sales to the repressive Saudi regime, all with Congressional backing...
The Pentagon says that providing the Saudis with F-15s bombers, Apache helicopters, armored vehicles, missiles, and bombs supports Saudi Arabian defense missions and helps promote stability in the region. But since March 2015, the Saudis have being using these weapons offensively to intervene in neighboring Yemen...
It’s high time for Congress to answer the Pope’s challenge to stop the arms trade and help prevent more Yemeni bloodshed.

Medea Benjamin is the founder of CODEPINK and Global Exchange and the author of nine books, including the recently released 'Kingdom of the unjust: Behind the U.S.-Saudi Connection'.

Former Bush adviser Wolfowitz to vote for Hillary Clinton
Ahram online|Reuters, Friday 26 Aug 2016

Paul Wolfowitz, a Republican adviser to former U.S. President George W. Bush, plans to vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton in the November presidential election despite his "serious reservations", Der Spiegel magazine reported on Friday.
Wolfowitz, who served as deputy defense secretary under Bush and also as president of the World Bank, said he viewed Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump as a security risk because of his admiration of Russian President Putin and his views on China, the magazine reported.
"It's important to make it clear how unacceptable he is," the magazine quoted Wolfowitz as saying in an interview.
"I wish there was a candidate whom I could support enthusiastically. I will have to vote for Hillary Clinton, although I have serious reservations about her," he said.
Wolfowitz rejected a common description of him as a key architect of the 2003 U.S. war against Iraq, saying that if he had truly been the architect many things would have gone differently, the magazine reported.
Wolfowitz said the goal had been to free the country, not occupy it, creating tensions with many Iraqis. He also defended the decision to invade Iraq, saying it was based on intelligence that later turned out to be faulty.
"Of course we would have proceeded differently if we had known that Saddam Hussein was not stockpiling weapons of mass destruction, but was only planning to do so," he said. "We would not have invaded."

In an interview with Vanity Fair magazine in May 2003, several months after the invasion, he suggested there were multiple reasons for it, but the Bush administration highlighted Iraq’s supposed WMD as the justification for the war as the most politically convenient.
“For bureaucratic reasons, we settled on one issue, weapons of mass destruction, because it was the one reason everyone could agree on,” he said at the time.

FLASHBACK 2001-2003:
Rumsfeld's Crazy Foreign Policy Team

To understand American policy, it is worth probing the character of the policy makers who design Rumsfeld's foreign policy. The three architects of American foreign policy are Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Perle. They will go down in Palestinian history as the true 'axis of evil'.
Wolfowitz and Perle are card carrying individuals with a resume that entitles them to the highest ranks of the fanatical expansionist wing of the Likud party.
Their current strategy is to divert attention from the Palestinian struggle for freedom by beating the war drums for an assault against Iraq. Their real agenda is to allow Sharon more time to 'win' against Palestinian resistance to Israeli repression.
Like Sharon, they believe that there is a level of repression that can be continually and permanently inflicted on the Palestinian people to force them to capitulate to every Likudnik real estate fantasy. (By Ahmed Amr for Palestine Chronicle, 17-8-2002)

Supporters of Israel, particularly Likud

The chief architects of the push to get Saddam Hussein have been Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Perle, who, as chairman of the Defense Policy Board, is not technically a member of the Bush administration.
As prize students of arch-hawk Albert Wohlstetter in the 1960s, the two men have been comrades-in-arms in a series of crusades against détente, arms control, and any multilateral effort that might constrain Washington's freedom of action to do what it wants, where and when it pleases, dating back to the early 1970s.
Within the administration, they generally can count on some heavy-weight actors for support, beginning with Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld and Vice President Dick Cheney, as well as Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis Libby, Pentagon policy chief Douglas Feith, and several members of the National Security Council staff, including its top aide for global issues and Iran-contra veteran, Elliott Abrams.
This circle of hawks is backed outside the administration by a network of veteran Washington hands whose political savvy, talent for polemics, media contacts, and lust for ideological combat have made them a formidable force on foreign policy since the Vietnam War.
With roots in the Scoop Jackson faction of the Democratic Party, these "neo-conservatives" are decidedly aggressive when it comes to supporting Israel, particularly Likud; mostly hostile toward the United Nations; often contemptuous of European "elites;" and absolutely convinced of the fundamental moral superiority and redemptive mission of the United States abroad. (Jim Lobe, 30-11-2001)

Bush planned Iraq 'regime change' before becoming President

A SECRET blueprint for US global domination reveals that President Bush and his cabinet were planning a premeditated attack on Iraq to secure 'regime change' even before he took power in January 2001.
The blueprint, uncovered by the Sunday Herald, for the creation of a 'global Pax Americana' was drawn up for Dick Cheney (now vice- president), Donald Rumsfeld (defence secretary), Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld's deputy), George W Bush's younger brother Jeb and Lewis Libby (Cheney's chief of staff).
The document, entitled Rebuilding America's Defences: Strategies, Forces And Resources For A New Century, was written in September 2000 by the neo-conservative think-tank Project for the New American Century (PNAC).
The plan shows Bush's cabinet intended to take military control of the Gulf region whether or not Saddam Hussein was in power. It says:
'The United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.'
This 'American grand strategy' must be advanced for 'as far into the future as possible', the report says. It also calls for the US to 'fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theatre wars' as a 'core mission'. (By Neil Mackay, Sunday Herald 16-9-2002)

The Wolfowitz Cabal

Whatever comes next in the battle against Saddam Hussein, Assistant Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz has achieved a life-long aim. He has diverted the search for a just solution to the Israeli-Palestinian problem onto the back burner while turning up the heat on the problem of Saddam Hussein...
The “Wolfowitz Cabal” is now determined to push the US in the same direction as Israel’s most dangerous right-wing policy and take on as an enemy every Islamic nation Israel perceives as a threat.
In this Wolfowitz and his colleague, Richard Perle, seem to have succeeded beyond their wildest and most fevered dreams. (Richard H. Curtiss, Palestine Chronicle 28-2-2003)

Showing strenght by destroying Baathism,
the symbol of independence & anti-colonialism

For the neo-conservatives Iraq must not only be de-Ba'athized, but Washington must also be accorded the opportunity to show the world, (especially other Muslim states) just how powerful and determined the United States is to both wage war and enforce political reform.
The neoconservatives view "Saddamism without Saddam" as the worst possible outcome of the present crisis. In the past months, they have excoriated the State Department and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for encouraging coups d'etat or enlisting the participation of even former senior Ba'ath officials in any post-invasion administration. (Jim Lobe, Alternet 21-3-2003)

George W. Bush: Ignorance is my strength..

How did the neo-con defence intellectuals - a small group at odds with most of the US foreign policy elite, Republican as well as Democratic - manage to capture the Bush administration?
Few supported Bush during the presidential primaries... Then they had a stroke of luck - Cheney was put in charge of the presidential transition (the period between the election in November and the accession to office in January). Dick Cheney used this opportunity to stack the administration with his hardline allies.
The neo-cons took advantage of Bush's ignorance and inexperience. Unlike his father, a Second World War veteran who had been ambassador to China, director of the CIA and vice-president, George W was a thinly educated playboy who had failed repeatedly in business before becoming the governor of Texas, a largely ceremonial position (the state's lieutenant governor has more power).
George W, raised in west Texas, absorbed the Texan cultural combination of machismo, anti-intellectualism and overt religiosity.
Fervent Christian Zionism, along with an admiration for macho Israeli soldiers that sometimes coexists with hostility to liberal Jewish-American intellectuals, is a feature of the southern culture.
It is not clear that George W fully understands the grand strategy that Wolfowitz and other aides are unfolding. He seems genuinely to believe that there was an imminent threat to the US from Saddam Hussein's "weapons of mass destruction", something the leading neocons say in public but are far too intelligent to believe themselves.< (Michael Lind, 12-4-2003)

Wolfowitz: Iraq war was about oil

US deputy defence secretary, Paul Wolfowitz - who has already undermined Tony Blair's position over weapons of mass destruction (WMD) by describing them as a "bureaucratic" excuse for war - has now gone further by claiming the real motive was that Iraq is "swimming" in oil.
The latest comments were made by Mr Wolfowitz in an address to delegates at an Asian security summit in Singapore at the weekend, and reported today by German newspapers Der Tagesspiegel and Die Welt.
Asked why a nuclear power such as North Korea was being treated differently from Iraq, where hardly any weapons of mass destruction had been found, the deputy defence minister said:
"Let's look at it simply. The most important difference between North Korea and Iraq is that economically, we just had no choice in Iraq. The country swims on a sea of oil."
His latest comments follow his widely reported statement from an interview in Vanity Fair last month, in which he said that "for reasons that have a lot to do with the US government bureaucracy, we settled on the one issue that everyone could agree on: weapons of mass destruction." (George Wright, The Guardian 4-6-2003)