He wants to tear down “crony capitalism”: “a brutal form of capitalism that is really about creating wealth and creating value for a very small subset of people. And it doesn’t spread the tremendous value creation throughout broader distribution patterns that were seen really in the 20th century...: when you have this kind of crony capitalism, you have a different set of rules for the people that make the rules.”
He is against Ayn Rand’s version of libertarianism:
“The second form of capitalism that I feel is almost as disturbing, is what I call the Ayn Rand or the Objectivist School of libertarian capitalism. And, look, I’m a big believer in a lot of libertarianism.... However, that form of capitalism is quite different when you really look at it to what I call the “enlightened capitalism” of the Judeo-Christian West.
It is a capitalism that really looks to make people commodities, and to objectify people, and to use them almost...
Read also: Power Religion and Humanistic Religion
Might Is Right
"In the United States more than anywhere else, in recent decades wealth and its accumulation came to be viewed as a civic virtue.
Flashback: Ayelet Shaked, the capitalist face of the Jewish Home
"When I say 'capitalism', I mean a full, pure, uncontrolled, unregulated laissez-faire capitalism,
Huffington Post sparked backlash after plastering their front page with the Jewish word “goy” in reference to newly fired White House chief strategist Steve Bannon. “Goy” is a Jewish word used to refer to non-Jews. Several White House aides are Jewish. Bannon is not Jewish. HuffPost editor in chief Lydia Green claimed the banner “was intended to be a mashup tribute to Yiddish and Beyoncé. (Daily Caller, 18-8-2017)
"We are strong capitalists. And we believe in the benefits of capitalism. And, particularly, the harder-nosed the capitalism, the better. However, like I said, there’s two strands of capitalism that we’re quite concerned about.
One is crony capitalism, or what we call state-controlled capitalism, and that’s the big thing the tea party is fighting in the United States, and really the tea party’s biggest fight is not with the left, because we’re not there yet.
The biggest fight the tea party has today is just like UKIP. UKIP’s biggest fight is with the Conservative Party.
The tea party in the United States’ biggest fight is with the Republican establishment, which is really a collection of crony capitalists that feel that they have a different set of rules of how they’re going to comport themselves and how they’re going to run things.
And, quite frankly, it’s the reason that the United States’ financial situation is so dire..."
"We’re backers of entrepreneurial capitalists. They’re not. They’re what we call corporatist. They want to have more and more monopolistic power..."
"To me, it’s incumbent upon freedom-loving people to make sure that we sort out particularly this crony capitalism so that the benefits become more of this entrepreneurial spirit and that can flow back to working-class and middle-class people.."
White House chief strategist Steve Bannon was weary of further American military involvement, and with his departure, President Donald Trump looks to be the only dove left in the West Wing.
Bannon supported Blackwater founder Erik Prince’s plan to use military contractors in the war in Afghanistan and was against National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster’s plan to deploy tens of thousands of more troops to the Afghan conflict, according to a source with knowledge of the deliberations.
While saying he would “bomb the s**t” out of ISIS, Trump ran on a largely non-interventionist campaign. He attacked President Bush for invading Iraq and cautioned against toppling the Assad regime in Syria.
His White House, however, is not populated with like-minded thinkers. Even the most Trump-like senior adviser left, Stephen Miller, was a strong supporter of the Iraq War and primarily focuses on domestic policy issues.
Trump does have the habit of speaking to outside advisers on the phone and calls with Bannon and Roger Stone might be the only times Trump hears war-weary voices.
The Trump presidency Steve Bannon fought for is over, and the people to blame are “West Wing Democrats” and the Republican establishment. That’s what Bannon told The Weekly Standard in a Friday interview immediately following his ouster as White House chief strategist.
“The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over,” Bannon said. “We still have a huge movement, and we will make something of this Trump presidency. But that presidency is over. It’ll be something else. And there’ll be all kinds of fights, and there’ll be good days and bad days, but that presidency is over.”
Bannon also took aim at the Republican establishment he loved to rage against before riding Trump’s campaign into his position as Trump’s chief strategist. “The Republican establishment has no interest in Trump’s success on this. They’re not populists, they’re not nationalists, they had no interest in his program,” Bannon said on Friday.
WASHINGTON -- Hours before Donald Trump's chief of staff told Steve Bannon that his time in the White House had come to an end, H. R. McMaster, the president's national security adviser and Bannon's West Wing adversary, was all smiles.
McMaster had survived a targeted campaign against him orchestrated by Bannon's allies on the far-right...
The campaign forced the president to come to McMaster's defense, and was reportedly a factor in the firing of Bannon on Friday, the New York Times reported.
As Trump prepared to relieve Bannon, McMaster hosted Israel's national security team at the White House and its senior leaders, including Israeli ambassador to the US Ron Dermer and head of Mossad Yossi Cohen, over to his house for a dress-down dinner on his porch.
Jason Greenblatt [Trump's Envoy For Israeli-Palestinian Peace] attended the day's meetings, and posted photos of the White House summit and dinner on Twitter.
Greenblatt said: "McMaster led the meeting from our side, and we had a very productive discussion on our strong and continuing partnership."
The Bannon-led nationalist wing of the Trump White House views McMaster as a "globalist" at odds with their goals and what they see as Trump's agenda. |
The campaign against McMaster started in earnest when McMaster removed several Bannon allies from the National Security Council.
Most senior White House aides are taking McMaster's side, notably Chief of Staff John Kelly. Bannon reportedly denies that he is behind the rumors or anti-McMaster attacks, prominent on Breitbart, which Bannon used to run. (The Week 14-8-2017)
The General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation formally thanked Syrian military personnel for their bravery and sacrifice in fighting terrorists throughout the country.
The official thanking event saw Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation Valery Gerasimov present top Syrian Arab Army (SAA) Tiger Forces commander Suheil al-Hassan with a ceremonial military sword.
The ceremony took place at the Khmeimim Airbase in Syria’s Latakia Governorate with Tiger Forces commander Suheil al-Hassan and various officers of the Russian Armed Forces general staff present. (Al-Masdar News, 19-8-2017
“Talking about foiling the Western project doesn’t mean we are victorious; the battle is still going on, and the signs of victory are there, but victory itself is another thing,” President al-Assad said.
“The price of resistance is much lower than the price of surrender… we paid a dear price in Syria in this war, but we managed to foil the Western project...”
“The media and psychological war they practiced during the past years were unable to affect us in fighting terrorism or push us towards fear and hesitation… we struck terrorism since day one, and we will continue to strike it as long as there is a single terrorist in Syria… fighting terrorism is a goal and the basis for any action we take.”
“Our Armed Forces are realizing one achievement after another every day, one week after the other, crushing terrorists and clearing the lands desecrated by terrorists,” he said, asserting that the valiant heroics of the Syrian Arab Army and supporting forces constitute a role model in the history of wars.
“We will continue in the upcoming stage to crush terrorists everywhere in cooperation with friends, and we will continue national reconciliations that proved their effectiveness, as well as increasing communication with the outside and marketing economic and economic opportunities…
The direct political, economic, and military support of our friends made the possibility of advancing on the ground greater and the losses fewer, and these friends are our actual partners.”
President al-Assad affirmed that Syrian economy has entered the stage of recovery, which might be slow, but it is consistent. “We are not in a state of isolation as they think, but this state of arrogance makes them think in that way.
There will be no security cooperation or opening of embassies or role for some states that say they are looking for a solution until they cut off their ties with terrorism in a clear and unambiguous way.”
“We will not allow enemies and rivals to achieve through politics what they failed to achieve through terrorism. We must work seriously from now to build the future Syria on solid bases.”
“Everything related to the destiny and future of Syria is a one hundred percent Syrian issue, and the unity of Syrian territory is self-evident and not up for debate or discussion,” President al-Assad affirmed.
The Justice and Construction (J&C) party, widely seen as the political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood in Libya, has turned on the Tripoli’s Dar Al-Ifta head Sheikh Sadek Ghariani for pronouncing that anyone who backed the Libyan Political Agreement (LPA) is a “non-believer”.
The controversial Ghariani is a long-standing opponent of the LPA who has regularly used his Tanasuh satellite TV channel to denounce the agreement, the Presidency Council (PC) and Faiez Serraj.
He has in the past also called for a jihad against the Libyan National Army (LNA) and its commander Khalifa Hafter and last May condemned the Abu Dhabi meeting of Serraj and Hafter as a conspiracy.
The J&C under its leader Mohamed Sowan has supported the LPA but until now has avoided going head to head with Ghariani.
However, today it declared that the sheikh’s anathema on those who backed the agreement was “irresponsible” and amounted to an invitation to shed Libyan blood. It said the cleric wanted to use religious fatwas to advance his political agenda which was unacceptable.
Libyan politician Mohamed Sowan has served as the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Justice and Construction Party (JCP) since its formation in March 2012. He was previously [in Gaddafi's Libya] held as a prisoner of war for eight years due to his involvement with the Muslim Brotherhood. (Counter Extremism Project)
Flashback: Libyans on the terror list
Breaking News: Soccer on the Temple Mount!
Matthew 18:23 - The Greatest in the Kingdom
Holy Site to Muslims? Arab Clown Desecrates Temple Mount
Major General Qassem Soleimani of Iran says the Islamic Republic does not seek materialistic interests in supporting Iraq and Syria — where it has advisory military presence — and the Palestinian cause.
“When we entered Iraq, we didn’t differentiate between our interests and those of Iraq; and we were not after [taking control of] oil wells or seizing cities like Mosul or Kirkuk. We did not and do not have monetary demands, either,” Major General Soleimani, who commands the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), said on Sunday.
He also said that Iran did not support the Palestinian people because of “Shia interests.” Almost all Palestinians are Sunnis, he said, and yet “we defend them.”
The senior commander also said that in spite of the violent capacities of the Daesh terrorist group and the creation of such other militant outfits as Jaish al-Islam in Syria, Iran had been able to bring stability to Syria...
Daesh launched a terrorist offensive inside Iraq in 2014. It swiftly took over territory in the Arab country and posed a threat to seize the capital, Baghdad, too.
Iran then offered advisory military assistance to both the central government in Baghdad and the regional government in Iraqi Kurdistan, helping them both maintain ground and win back territory lost to the terrorist group. In Syria, too, Iran has been offering advisory support to the government...
Major General Soleimani said the Iranian government had succeeded in transcending matters of language and race, thus bringing about stability.
Defenders of a new form of nationalism that is pragmatic
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. Firouzabadi warned that a great strategic threat is taking shape in the southeast Mediterranean.
Terrorists who slaughter innocent people will find no glory in this life or the next. They are nothing but thugs and criminals and predators, and, that’s right, losers.
Working alongside our allies, we will break their will, dry up their recruitment, keep them from crossing our borders, and yes, we will defeat them, and we will defeat them handily. In Afghanistan and Pakistan, America's interests are clear.
We must stop the resurgence of safe havens that enable terrorists to threaten America. And we must prevent nuclear weapons and materials from coming into the hands of terrorists...
We are not nation building again. We are killing terrorists. The killers need to know they have nowhere to hide...
Our troops will fight to win. We will fight to win. From now on, victory will have a clear definition. — attacking our enemies, obliterating ISIS, crushing al Qaeda, preventing the Taliban from taking over Afghanistan, and stopping mass terror attacks against America before they emerge.
Before I provide the details of our new strategy, I want to say a few words to the service members here with us tonight.
To those watching from their posts, and to all Americans listening at home. Since the founding of our republic, our country has produced a special class of heroes whose selflessness, courage, and resolve is unmatched in human history..
The men and women of our military operate as one team, with one shared mission and one shared sense of purpose. They transcend every line of race, ethnicity, creed, and color to serve together and sacrifice together in absolutely perfect cohesion.
That is because all service members are brothers and sisters. They are all part of the same family. It’s called the American family. They take the same oath, fight for the same flag, and live according to the same law.
They are bound together by common purpose, mutual trust, and selfless devotion to our nation and to each other. The soldier understands what we as a nation too often forget, that a wound inflicted upon on a single member of our community is a wound inflicted upon us all.
When one part of America hurts, we all hurt. And when one citizen suffers an injustice, we all suffer together. Loyalty to our nation demands loyalty to one another. Love for America requires love for all of its people.
When we open our hearts to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice, no place for bigotry, and no tolerance for hate.
E Pluribus Unum was considered a de facto motto of the United States until 1956 when the United States Congress passed an act (H. J. Resolution 396), adopting "In God We Trust" as the official motto
KUBINKA (Moscow Region) — Speaking at the talks with his Lebanese counterpart Yaacoub Sarraf, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu stressed that the movement of terrorists from one country to another "cannot continue indefinitely."
"I would like our Western partners… finally to separate the moderate opposition from terrorists and stop rendering assistance across the board," Shoigu said.
He named Syria as an example where the enactment of de-escalation zones and terrorist-moderate opposition delineation have helped put an end to civil war and focus efforts on combating terrorism.
The West's long-standing support for so-called moderate rebels used to result in the weaponry ending up in the hands of terrorists, who sought to hamper peace efforts.
In order to stop the brutal civil war in Syria, the de-escalation zones were established with the participation of the three guarantor states, including Russia, Turkey and Iran.
The de-escalation zones have been established for six months with the option of extending them automatically for another six months.
As of today, the guarantor states have managed to reach agreements with opposition groups on creating three zones of which the third one was agreed upon in late July. The consultations on the fourth safe zone in the Idlib province are ongoing.
This is not an in-depth scientific article, merely a quick summation of a few points that came to mind while watching the eclipse on TV today.
Why do eclipses occur? The Sun’s diameter is 400 times greater than the Moon and coincidentally the Sun also happens to be nearly precisely 400 times further away.
This is the reason that the Sun and the Moon appear the same size in the Earth’s sky and why we on Earth can experience eclipses of the Sun.
The chances of that occurring are, literally, astronomically small.
Is it just pure coincidence? In order to have a solar eclipse the Moon has to be exactly the size that it is, which is 2,160 miles. Not 2,161, not 2,159, but 2,160 miles at its equator.
I don’t often believe in coincidences, especially ones as astounding as those involving the earth, moon and sun.
So what are we to believe, that a coincidence of truly astronomical proportions is the explanation for the existence of the moon and the resulting solar eclipses?
Or is it more likely that the precise sizing and positioning of the moon are no coincidence at all and solar eclipses are strong evidence that someone had a hand in positioning the moon?
Just some food for thought…..
It’s a shocking fact that there has never been a human culture which has not related its myths, institutions and identity to the stars.
The name we normally give to the quest for meaning in the sky is astrology, from the Greek logos — ‘word’ or ‘logic’ of the stars — as opposed to astronomy, the ‘law’ of the stars.
The Arabic equivalent would be Ahkam al-Nudium, literally, “the decrees of the stars,” and in India we talk about Jyotish, the “science of light.”
That the impulse to develop meaningful relationships between sky and society is universal is suggested by the evolution of completely distinct, sophisticated, systems of astrology in two civilizations, the one in China and the other amongst the Maya and Aztecs of Mesoamerica. In both cultures astrology existed as a complex aid to management of the state, and as a simple means of fortune-telling...
The ancient zodiac signs survive in the modern West because, uniquely, in an age of aggressive consumerism, media-overload and scientific materialism, they encourage people to reflect on themselves and their inner worlds; their hopes, fears and secret motivations.
TEHRAN (FNA)- Iraqi National Security Advisor Falah al-Fayaz underlined that the country will not recognize the results of an independence referendum that is said to be held in the Kurdistan region soon, adding that such a move is only meant to please Israel.
"It is an illegal action and we will not recognize its results," Fayaz said in an interview with the Arabic service of Sputnik news agency on Wednesday. Warning that an independence referendum will yield negative consequences for Iraq, he said, "All international parties are opposed to referendum and separatism, but Israel."
Last month, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi also underscored serious opposition to Kurdistan region's bid to arrange a referendum for independence, describing it as illegal and a big mistake. Stressing that the Iraqi officials should move in line with people's interests, he said that "separating from Iraq's integrated government will not be to the benefit of our Kurdish citizens".
Al-Abadi underlined that there is no opposition to the federalization of Iraq based on the constitution, and doubted if even one single problem of Kurdistan would be solved through separation from the central government.
In July, Iraq's former Nation Security Adviser Mowaffak al-Rubaie warned of the dire consequences of arranging a referendum in the Iraqi Kurdistan region, and said only Israel and Saudi Arabia agree with this plan.
"All the world states, from the EU and the US to the Middle-East countries, oppose the referendum for independence in the Kurdistan region and only Saudi Arabia and Israel have agreed with it to be used as a pressure leverage against Baghdad," al-Rubaie, now a senior Iraqi parliamentarian, was quoted as saying by al-Mayadeen news channel.
Also, last month, Head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq (ISCI) Ammar al-Hakim underlined the necessity for unity among all Iraqi groups and people, and said he sees a referendum for independence in the Kurdistan region as a harmful blow to the entire nation.
"I believe that Iraq's unity is of vital importance because first it has been stated in the country's Constitution and second, the Iraqis' interests depend on this unity and the consequences of distorting this unity will not be limited to a specific region and will start a domino effect," Hakim told FNA.
Read also: The Kurdish connection: Guy Bechor, YNet News, 3-8-2011
"The Kurdish state will be a close ally of Israel, just like South Sudan. The Kurds are close to Israel and view it as a twin sister with a difficult history and non-Arabic identity. What we see are four states hostile to Israel in one way or another that will have to fall apart in order to give rise to an ally of Israel.
People do not seem to seek equality with other cultures, faiths and tribes
gaddafi, quran-based-socialism, 2011 | nato-israel, might is right, 2011 | arour-bin-laden, salafism-wahhabism, 2012
BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) - Two months after the dominant military force in eastern Libya declared victory in a campaign to retake Benghazi, Hassan al-Zawy is living rough in his home in the district that witnessed the city’s last major battle.
Like many other residents, he ventured back as Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army gradually wrested back control from Islamist militants and other rebel groups.
Parts of Libya’s second city were reduced to rubble during more than three years of fighting and, with economic crisis and political turmoil gripping the country, rebuilding is a daunting challenge.
A conflict that developed after Muammar Gaddafi was toppled in an uprising six years ago has yet to be resolved.
Benghazi, where the 2011 revolution started, has seen some of the worst violence. Tens of thousands of residents, many opposed to Haftar, were displaced to other Libyan cities.
Sabri is where Haftar’s rivals had their final strongholds, and was bombarded by LNA heavy artillery and air strikes up until a few weeks ago. Sporadic fighting continued after Haftar announced victory on July 5..
Destroyed buildings in Sabri, a central Benghazi district, Libya, august 15, 2017
Some returning residents have formed citizens’ committees to lobby the municipal authorities on water, electricity and hygiene. But a lack of funds and political leadership in a country still divided between two rival governments will hinder reconstruction, said Osama al-Kaza, director of projects at Benghazi’s municipality. Achieving an outstanding and modern image for the city will have to be done in stages, will take years and cost billions...
Prophet Muhammad and Imam Ali warned against the rise of extremism in Kitab Al Fitan – a compilation of hadiths (Islamic tradition) relating to the end of times, put together by prominent scholar Nuyam bin Hammad in 229 AH. In it Imam Ali recalled the Prophet saying:
“If you see the black flags, then hold your ground and do not move your hands or your feet. A people will come forth who are weak and have no capability, their hearts are like blocks of iron.
They are the people of the State (literally the people of Al Dawla), they do not keep a promise or a treaty.
"They call to the truth but they are not its people. Their names are (nicknames like Abu Mohammed) and their last names (are the names of town and cities, like Al Halabi [and now al-Baghdadi]) and their hair is loose like women’s hair.
(Leave them) until they fight among themselves, then Allah will bring the truth from whoever He wills.” (The Telegraph: What is Wahhabism?)
She is just a couple of weeks into her appointment as new Iranian vice president Laaya Joneidi's decision to abandon her headscarf and fashion style for the all-encompassing black chador is raising questions among women in the Islamic Republic, especially after she said that President Hassan Rouhani personally asked her to wear the more conservative Muslim women's garment.
Although Laaya Joneidi typically used to wear a hijab — the headscarf that is mandated by law in today's Iran — and a long coat with pants, her switch to the more conservative chador serves as a political statement in and of itself in the Islamic Republic.
The controversy began when a government website posted a photograph of Joneidi, who earned a doctorate from Harvard in comparative law and international commercial arbitration, wearing the long black chador, exposing only her face. Social media exploded with posts referring to her as a "chadori."
The controversy only grew after Joneidi, one of two female vice presidents in Rouhani's new government, gave an interview to the reformist daily newspaper Sharq.
"Mr. Rouhani, because of the protocol of the Cabinet, asked me to wear the chador," she told the newspaper. "I respected his demand."
"Mr. Rouhani, based on which law or your protocol forced Laaya Joneidi to wear the chador?" tweeted Amene Shirafkan, a journalist who works at "Zanan-Emrooz" or "Today's Women" magazine.
The chador controversy underscores the unwritten protocol rules for those in public office and government in Iran — rules that also affect men. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif famously wore a goatee before entering Rouhani's government, but later grew the full beard common for those in power.
Soroush Farhadian, a Tehran-based political analyst who backs reformists, says that not wearing a chador remains a taboo in Iranian politics. By asking Joneidi to wear one, Rouhani was trying to avoid a confrontation with hard-liners, he said.
Hijab|Chador: A form of Idol Worship?
AMMAN - Jordan has said its relations with the Syrian regime are heading in the "right direction" and looked forward to a reopening of the border crossings with its war-torn neighbour.
Government spokesman Mohamed Momani highlighted the "stability" of the situation in southern Syria, across the border from Jordan.
The government spokesman, who is also state minister for information, said his remarks were "a very important message that everyone should hear".
A ceasefire brokered by the United States, Russia and Jordan in the southern Syrian provinces of Daraa, Quneitra and Suweida has largely held since it entered into force July 9. Russia and Iran, the Syrian regime's main allies, and rebel-backer Turkey agreed in May to create four safe zones in Syria in a deal aimed at bringing a lasting truce.
"The ceasefire is holding, and we hope there will soon be additional measures to consolidate stability and security in Syria," said Momani. "If the current situation continues and southern Syria stabilises, it would allow for the reopening of the crossing points between the two states," he added.
Jordan is one of the few Arab countries not to have closed its embassy in Damascus, and the Syrian diplomatic mission in Amman also remains open. The United Nations says Jordan is hosting more than 650,000 Syrian refugees, while the kingdom puts their actual number at 1.4 million.
Wikipedia: Relations between neighbours Jordan and Syria have ancient roots as Jordan was historically the southern part of Syria. The two states were created after the First World War from former Ottoman dominions by way of a secret bilateral agreement between Britain and France.
French President Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday a contact group on Syria will meet at the United Nations in New York in September, as he called the fight against terrorism the priority of his foreign policy.
In an opening speech to the annual gathering of French ambassadors at the Elysee palace, Macron said the "main players" of the Syrian crisis would be involved, without elaborating. It remained unclear what the purpose of the new group would be and how it differed to previous contact groups.
Macron said cooperation with Russia had yielded "concrete results" on curtailing the use of chemical weapons in Syria.
French president also said he planned to travel to the Middle East next spring, in a trip including Israel and the Palestinian territories, to help the peace process in the region and promote a two-state solution.
"We will continue our efforts with the United Nations to find a two-state solution, Israel and Palestine, living safely side-by-side within borders recognized by the international community, with Jerusalem at the capital of both states," he said.
Besides Israel and the Palestinian territories, Macron said the trip will include Lebanon and Jordan.
The 39-year-old leader also insisted there was no alternative to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, which has been fiercely opposed by U.S. President Donald Trump. "There is no alternative to the non-proliferation agenda. It enables a constructive and demanding relationship with Iran," he said.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan met on Monday with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the Turkish capital of Ankara.
The two leaders expressed support for a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital, with Erdoğan saying that "the key to success lies in defending the rights of the Palestinians." He also called on Israel to stop the "occupation attempts" that undermine the feasibility of a two-state solution."
Erdoğan reiterated Turkey's official position supporting two states within the 1967 borders, and said that Turkey would continue to support the recognition of a Palestinian state in all international forums.
"Turkey is ready to support efforts to revive the peace process," stated Erdoğan. He added that he does not want Israel to continue to control the narrative covered by the press, allegedly through blood, tears and confrontation.
"We emphasize that we are ready and committed to a historic peace deal under the auspices of President Trump, and we hope that our people will live with dignity and sovereignty in an independent state with east Jerusalem as its capital," Abbas said in a press conference with President Erdoğan.
He also thanked Erdoğan and the Turkish people for their "stubborn stance against the Israeli measures in the Al-Aqsa Mosque and their provocations of Muslims."
Abbas said that he wanted to end the internal divide between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas (which rules the Gaza Strip), saying that "there will be no state in Gaza and no state will be established without Gaza."
Flashback: Ariel Sharon &
Antonio Guterres, UN secretary-general, has lashed out at Israel's illegal settlement activity, calling it a "major obstacle" to achieving a two-state solution and peace with the Palestinians.|
"There is no plan B to the two-state solution," he said on Tuesday after meeting Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah in the West Bank city of Ramallah. "A two-state solution, end to occupation, creating conditions to end the suffering of the Palestinian people are the only way to guarantee that peace is established," Guterres added.
His remarks came a day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed to never uproot any West Bank settlement - just days after a White House envoy was in the region trying to restart peace talks with the Palestinians.
"We have returned here for good," Netanyahu said. "There will be no more uprooting of settlements in the Land of Israel. Settlements will not be uprooted."
In response to Netanyahu's comments, Guterres told reporters on Tuesday that both Israel and the Palestinians should refrain from taking any action that could undermine the prospects for a peaceful agreement. "We believe that settlement activity is illegal in the international law and it's an obstacle for peace..."
On Wednesday, Guterres, who met Netanyahu on Monday, is expected to visit the Israeli-blockaded, Hamas-run Gaza Strip.
CAIRO: Arab League chief Ahmed Abul Gheit on Tuesday denounced remarks by Israeli premier Benjamin Netanyahu who ruled out evacuating settlements in the occupied Palestinian West Bank.
The rightwing Israeli leader, speaking in a Jewish settlement, had described them as an "inheritance". "It is our land. We have come back here to stay here for good," promising "no uprooting of settlements".
The Arab League chief "strongly denounced" the remarks in a statement.
"Abul Gheit considers this stance, which is utterly rejected, as something that cannot come from a person who seeks peace," the statement said.
"The price of resistance is much lower than the price of capitulation"
In the past three years, disruption to Libya’s oil production has cost the country $160 billion, the Central Bank of Libya (CBL) said today. That is almost $9,000 per head per year for every one of the country’s six million people.
As renewed pipeline blockades this week saw oil output plunge by 360,000 barrels per day, the CBL took the opportunity to point out that the country’s gross national product (GNP) had collapsed from LD112 billion to just LD19 billion this year...
The recent loss of more than a third of Libyan oil production has prompted the CBL to warn of the serious effect this will have on public finances. It has said that the pipeline closures would increase the suffering of ordinary Libyans. It has warned that the new crisis would also push it to take acton that would put more pressure on spending.
However, without the approval of the Presidency Council (PC) and its head Faiez Serra it is unlikely that the CBL would be able to abandon the current fixed exchange rate and thus overnight destroy the arbitrage that has fuelled everything from fuel smuggling to phoney Letters of Credit.
As one diplomat said recently to the Libya Herald: “There are too many powerful people in Libya making a fortune from the country’s failure to allow any real change in the direction of recovery and success”, a view endorsed by the new UNSMIL chief Ghassan Salam.
Libya has a serious problem of governance that can hardly wait to be addressed, the new UNSMIL chief Ghassan Salamé has told the UN Security Council.
In a concise and lucid first report to the UN, during which he made a point of saying he was speaking by videoconference from Tripoli, Salamé said:
“The impression of a now well-rooted political economy of predation is palpable, as if the country is fuelling its own crisis with its own resources to the benefit of the few and the frustration of the many”.
“People are frustrated with their deteriorating living conditions.. People are tired of the endless cuts in electricity and water, which in turn take down the telephone system and the internet. Libyans cannot understand being poor in a country rich with natural resources..."
DOHA: Two of the world’s largest energy producers, Qatar and Russia, vowed to increase trade ties at a time when the emirate is facing an economic boycott from neighboring states.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov made the commitment after a “lengthy” meeting in Doha with his Qatari counterpart, Sheikh Mohammad bin Abdel-Rahman al-Thani, and before that, the country’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.
“We are committed to bolstering trade and economic ties,” Lavrov told reporters afterward.
He added that Moscow “attached great importance” to economic cooperation, including energy, between the two countries, a sentiment echoed by Sheikh Mohammad.
Russia and Qatar are two of the world’s top four gas producing countries. Both are also major oil producers, and last year Qatar spent billions on taking a stake in Russia’s state-controlled oil company, Rosneft.
Qatar has turned to expanding its economic ties after a group of countries led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates cut off political and trade links with Doha on June 5, initiating the Gulf’s worst political crisis in years. The bloc accuses Qatar of supporting extremism, a charge the emirate denies.
before 2011: gaddafi is a friend - 2011: muslim brotherhood & islamist rebels are friends - 2017: progressive...
Lavrov – who has also visited Kuwait and the UAE as part of his Middle East tour – called for all parties to find a solution. He said the disputing countries should work with regional mediators Kuwait to resolve the crisis.
“We are convinced that there’s a need to seek a solution by searching for mutually beneficial approaches through dialog,” the Russian foreign minister said.
“It’s in our interests for the GCC to be united and strong,” he said, referring to the Gulf Cooperation Council comprised of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
TEHRAN: Hundreds of Iranians attended the funeral of Ebrahim Yazdi, one of the country's most influential dissident politicians and a former foreign minister.
The ceremony took place in a mosque north of Tehran and was attended by many of Yazdi's political allies as well as ordinary Iranian citizens. His coffin was draped with the flag of the Islamic Republic of Iran and friends acted as pallbearers.
Yazdi died at age 85 on Sunday in Izmir, Turkey, where he was being treated for complications from cancer after being denied a U.S. visa for follow-up treatment in Houston, Texas, in January.
Yazdi was a close ally of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the late leader of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. However, his party, the Freedom Movement, later turned against the clerics as they consolidated power.
A former member of parliament, Yazdi resigned as foreign minister in 1979 in protest of the takeover of the U.S. embassy by militant students who kept 52 Americans hostages for 444 days. Washington later cut diplomatic relations with Tehran.
Yazdi argued that the takeover led to a harsher stance by Washington against Iran's Islamic revolution and emboldened former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein to wage an eight-year war against Iran, which left more than 1 million casualties on both sides.
He was among a small group of politicians who believed the war should have come to end in early 1980s. It lasted until 1988.
At Thursday's funeral the crowd occasionally raised the traditional demand for the release of opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi who have been under house arrest since 2011.They both challenged the 2009 re-election of former hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Ali Shakouri Rad, a reformist politician who attended the funeral, said Yazdi always sought freedom and pursued peace and reform.
"He is an icon for those things," Rad said. "And that's why you see large crowds have participated in his funeral."
Some Iranian leaders, including President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif as well as former reformist President Mohammad Khatami offered condolence messages after Yazdi's death.
Flashback: The Unnecessary War
Matthew 5:43-48 - Love Your Enemies
Do not hate the individuals who do evil, hate only the evil deed itself
Occupied Westbank - Goldstein's tomb.
"Here lies the saint, Dr. Baruch Kappel Goldstein, blessed be the memory of the righteous and holy man, may The Lord avenge his blood, who devoted his soul to The Jews, Jewish religion and Jewish land. His hands are innocent and his heart is pure. He was killed as a martyr of God on the 14th of Adar, Purim, in the year 5754.".
Israeli settlement watchdog Peace Now said the new arrangement was more than a technicality.
"By granting official status to the Hebron settlers, the Israeli government is formalising the apartheid system in the city," it said in a statement on Thursday.
""This step... is another illustration of the policy of compensating the most extreme settlers for their illegal actions", it added.
Baruch Kopel Goldstein (December 9, 1956 – February 25, 1994) was an American-Israeli physician, religious extremist, and mass murderer, who perpetrated the 1994 Cave of the Patriarchs massacre in Hebron, killing 29 Palestinian Muslim worshippers and wounding another 125. Goldstein's gravesite became a pilgrimage site for Jewish extremists. The following words are inscribed on the tomb: "He gave his life for the people of Israel, its Torah and land.."
Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman said he had ordered the change in the settler council's status and pledged to do more.
"For me the strengthening of the Jewish community in Hebron is of very great importance," a statement from his office said.
On 24 August 2017, settlers from Kiryat Arba verbally abused Palestinians in the al-Hariqah neighborhood of Hebron....
Kiryat Arba settlers verbally abuse Palestinian residents
B'Tselem has championed human rights in the West Bank and Gaza Strip for over two decades.
Iraqis visit their dead in world’s largest graveyard on Eid
On the first day of the Eid of al-Adha, Iraqi Muslims have visited Wadi al-Salam graveyard in the city of Najaf, the largest in the world... Many of the graves are decorated with the flags of Iraq and armed groups currently fighting ISIS. Iraqi forces and paramilitary forces have lost thousands in the war against ISIS according to unofficial estimates. Some are buried in the holy city of Najaf.
Wadi al-Salam or Valley of Peace is considered a holy place as it is close to the shrine of Ali Bin Abi Talib, cousin and son-in-law of Islam’s prophet Mohammed. (Rudaw Net, 1-9-2017)
Syria: Visiting injured personal of the Army
In appreciation of their sacrifices in the course of defending the homeland and on the occasion of Eid al-Adha, delegations of politicians, businessmen and other figures paid visits to injured personnel of the Army in military hospitals in Damascus, Aleppo and Sweida provinces.
Minister of Tourism Bishr Yazigi and Aleppo Governor Hussein Diab visited the Military Hospital in Aleppo and the Martyrs’ Cemetery where they placed wreaths on the monument of the Unknown Soldier. (SANA, 1-9-2017)
Libyan activist Hend Amry makes an important point about the relative lack of interest of television news in stories such as the persecution of the Burmese (Myanmar) Muslims by the Buddhist establishment: "When Muslims are the victims of terrorism, there isn't the fraction of western attention as when they're the perpetrators." (September 2, 2017)
When Muslims are perpetrators, as in Brussels, Paris and Barcelona, the mass media often goes into 24/7 coverage mode usually reserved for natural disasters and Trump’s tweet storms. But the horrific attacks on the Rohingya Muslims of Burma (Myanmar), which have forced thousands to flee in recent days, have elicited no interest....
As for other Muslim victims, I don’t need to bother to research. You will almost never see any mention in US television news of the severe human rights violations daily perpetrated by Israelis against the Palestinians of the West Bank, including theft of property, destruction of buildings and orchards, and assault. This is a low-intensity human rights catastrophe and has been going on for decades...
Or take Yemen, which is the worst humanitarian crisis in the world now that al-Assad has won the civil war for the moment. The United States is backing the Saudi-led war on Yemen to the hilt, with logistical support and even help in choosing targets to bomb. The bombing began in spring of 2015. By now, you have millions living on the edge, who could fall into starvation is just one more thing went wrong. But you’d go blind scanning the television in the US for news about the Yemen war.
As for ISIL, most of its victims have been Muslims, but you’d never know that from the television news coverage.
The prejudices of top cable and network news executives are warping the consciousness of our whole country. In this bizarro world, Muslims are never victims and never presented sympathetically...
In the early 1990s, after identifying settlements as one of the largest obstacles to the two state solution, Peace Now established Settlement Watch, taking upon itself to track and analyze developments in the settlements. Peace Now works to prevent settlement expansion and stop illegal settlement activity. (Peace Now website)
The left-wing NGO Peace Now slammed the decision to help the Amona families whose homes were destroyed on the order of the High Court of Justice. It ruled that the outpost had been illegally built on private Palestinian property.
“It’s the height of chutzpah that those who broke the law and ignored the demolition orders and prevented the execution of judicial orders receives such a large portion of the government’s budget,” Hagit Ofran said.
“Netanyahu’s government continues its policy to reward those who break the law." She added that the settler’s requests are like a “bottomless pit” into which the prime minister keeps falling.
Right-wing and settler leaders thanked Netanyahu for providing the funds...
“It is certainly time that the moral heroes of Amona have a home of their own in the Amihai settlement,” Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel (Bayit Yehudi) said in response....
Syria: Deir ez-Zor's civilians celebrate as SAA close on breaking IS siege, 3-9-2017
The governor of Deir Az Zor province said the Syrian army would reach the city within 48 hours.
"The heroes of the army will arrive at Deir Az Zor in 24-48 hours at the most," Mohammed Ibrahim Samra told Reuters news agency, adding that the army was now 18-20km from the edge of the city.
On Saturday, a military media unit run by Assad's ally Hezbollah reported the army had captured Jebel al-Bashri to the west of Deir Az Zor, meaning forces were less than 30km from the city.
Pro-government fighters were also battling to eradicate a large ISIL enclave they left to their rear in central Syria as they move towards Deir Az Zor.
The Stronghold of Deir Ezzor: All What You Need To Know
Over 80 sorties were performed by Russian warplanes to back the Syrian government troops’ offensive towards the city of Deir ez-Zor, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.
"In order to provide air support to the government troops’ offensive towards Deir ez-Zor, Russian warplanes made more than 80 sorties. The airstrikes destroyed two tanks, three armored infantry carriers and more than ten all-terrain vehicles equipped with heavy weapons. Losses among terrorists amounted to more than 70 men," the statement reads.
The Russian Defense Ministry added that Syrian government troops, supported by the Russian Aerospace Force, continued the offensive towards the city of Deir ez-Zor.
"In eastern Syria, the government troops supported by the Russian Aerospace Force continue the offensive towards the city of Deir ez-Zor".
"The Syrian troops under the command of general Suheil al-Hassan, active in the northern part of the Raqqa province, have advanced eight kilometers in the past 24 hours, seizing two strategic heights," the document says.
Eye witnesses say that the militants’ defensive positions on the city’s outskirts have been destroyed. On the western front, government forces and militia units have another ten kilometers to cover to join the troops besieged at the 137th mechanized brigade’s base. In the south, the troops are storming the Al-Shula and Kabajib settlements.
Suheil Salman al-Hassan (born in 1970), nicknamed The Tiger, is a general in the Syrian Army and commander of its Tiger Forces.
He graduated from the Syrian Arab Air Force academy in 1991, and served in many units of the Syrian Arab Air Forces and Air Defence Command, completing several training courses. During the Syrian Civil War, Suheil al-Hassan has served and commanded his troops during several major engagements, including Operation Canopus Star and the battle for the Shaer gas field. He is part of the new generation of field Syrian army commanders who emerged during the civil war.
He is known for liking poetry, even broadcasting his own poems over to the loudspeaker at his enemies, as a warning of what will come if they do not surrender. He says that he always tries to give a chance to his enemies to give up and surrender, but has no pity if they do not or if they betray him.
He was blacklisted by the European Union on 23-1-2012
COUNCIL IMPLEMENTING REGULATION (EU) No 363/2013
The Syrian army has managed to break an Isis siege on the eastern town of Deir Ezzor for the first time since the militants surrounded it three years ago, Syrian state TV has said.
Activists and UK-based war monitor the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) confirmed that government troops and their allies had reached the western outskirts of the city amid fierce fighting on Tuesday.
Forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad have made steady gains on the jihadi militants’ desert position for several months with help from Lebanon’s Hezbollah and Russian air support. In the past few days, the pace at which the Syrian army has retaken territory has increased rapidly.
Russia’s Defence Ministry confirmed that a Russian warship in the Mediterranean had fired cruise missiles toward Isis targets in Deir Ezzor province on Tuesday, destroying a communications and command centre, ammunition depots and an armoured vehicle repair shop. Liberating the city will mean relief for Deir Ezzor’s estimated 70,000 residents, who have been reliant on UN air drops of food, medicine and other supplies since fighting over the city broke out in late 2014.
The militants are also under significant pressure in their de facto capital of Raqqa, south of Deir Ezzor, where a US-backed Arab and Kurdish alliance has retaken the Old City in a battle which has seen significant civilian casualties. Isis lost control of its largest city, Mosul in neighbouring Iraq, in July.
The crumbling of Isis’s “caliphate” is leading the militants to adopt increasingly desperate measures to hang on to their remaining territory and impose their rules on people under control.
President Bashar al-Assad called on Tuesday Maj. Gen. Rafiq Shahada, head of the Security Committee in Deir Ezzor, Maj. Gen. Hassan Mohammad, leader of Division 17, Brig. Gen. Issam Zahr-Eddin, leader of Brigade 104 in the Presidential Guard and the soldiers guarding Deir Ezzor Airport, after the Syrian army broke ISIS siege imposed on Deir Ezzor city for more than three years earlier on the day.
“You have proved, through your steadfastness in the face of the most powerful terrorist organizations on earth, that you shoulder responsibility, as you have kept the promise and have set a great role model for next generations,” the President said in a phone conversation with the officers and soldiers.
He added that it will go down in history that “you, though small in number, stood your ground and have been able to perform your missions to the fullest and achieved heroics, one after another, without fear or hesitation.”
He went on addressing the commanders and soldiers saying: “Here you are now side by side with your comrades who rushed to your help and fought the most ferocious of battles to break the siege on the city and to be with you on the front attack line to liberate the whole region from terrorism and restore security and safety to all parts of the country to the last inch.”
Deir ez-Zor: Footage captured the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) embracing with troops previously surrounded by the self-proclaimed Islamic State at the Brigade 137 base, after government forces broke the IS siege, in the Deir ez-Zor area, Tuesday.
Units of the Syrian Arab Army linked up with the previously-surrounded troops, thus breaking a three-year-long siege of the government-held enclave of Deir ez-Zor, with the help of the SAA Tiger Forces (also known as the Qawat Al-Nimr).
“In short, as for Deir ez-Zor, and over the past while, we were like an island in the middle of an ocean, totally isolated. The closest city is Homs, which is more than 250 kilometres away.
Yet, despite the siege by Daesh, and the scarcity of all needs of survival, water, electricity, food, the army and the friendly forces persevered in defending Deir ez-Zor, in addition to the perseverance of the residents of Deir ez-Zor, which gave more incentive [for the army] to protect Deir Ez-Zor even more.
Daesh [attacked us] over the past years, on all fronts and directions, whether from the north […] or the west […], or the east […], or other directions, they have tried with all means, using planted cars in an extensive way, in addition to repetitive attacks around d the clock...
Despite all of this the army perceived and destroyed Daesh and their dreams over the entrances of Deir Ez-Zor.” (Al-Masdar News, 6-9-2017)