Saddam's Death, 90 (april 2017)
attempt to destroy political holism in the middle east

See also: Page 89: march 2017 and Page 91: april 2017 - part 2
Israel & The Temple Revolution & Unesco & the Temple

Regime Change in Iraq - Overview 2002/2003
Trump & the Two Messiah's
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

"The despot thinks he is just as God... What a nadir and mean fate!
The despot, as represented in this age, in our day, imagines he can enslave the people..
But they were born free. They were freed by God’s will through prophets and messengers, to be slaves only to Him and not to anyone of the people." Saddam Hussein, Iraq Daily 4-3-2003

A person with a God Complex may refuse to admit the possibility of their error or failure, even in the face of irrefutable evidence, intractable problems or difficult or impossible tasks.
The person is also highly dogmatic in their views, meaning the person speaks of their personal opinions as though they are unquestionably correct.
Someone with a god complex may exhibit no regard for the conventions and demands of society, and may request special consideration or privileges.

"That is the issue that will continue in this country... It is the eternal struggle between these two principles -- right and wrong -- throughout the world. They are the two principles that have stood face to face from the beginning of time, and will ever continue to struggle.
The one is the common right of humanity and the other the divine right of kings." Abraham Lincoln (October 15, 1858 Debate at Alton, Illinois)

"Happy day, when, all appetites controlled, all poisons subdued, all matter subjected, mind, all conquering mind, shall live and move the monarch of the world. Glorious consummation! Hail fall of Fury! Reign of Reason, all hail!" Abraham Lincoln (February 22, 1842 Temperance Address)

"...To be a human being among human beings, and remain one forever, no matter what misfortunes befall, not to become depressed, and not to falter - this is what life is, herein lies its task." Fyodor Dostoevsky (to his brother Mikhail, Dec. 22, 1849)

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

“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)

Page Index

"Holism is the most fundamental discovery of 20th century science. It is a discovery of every science from astrophysics to quantum physics to environmental science to psychology to anthropology.
It is the discovery that the entire universe is an integral whole, and that the basic organizational principle of the universe is the field principle: the universe consists of fields within fields, levels of wholeness and integration that mirror in fundamental ways, and integrate with, the ultimate, cosmic whole...."
"For many thinkers and religious teachers throughout this history, holism was the dominant thought, and the harmony that it implies has most often been understood to encompass cosmic, civilizational, and personal dimensions. Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha, Lord Krishna, Lao Tzu, and Confucius all give us visions of transformative harmony, a transformative harmony that derives from a deep relation to the holism of the cosmos."

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)

"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)

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)

Christians must focus on Jesus
They commit all sorts of theological gymnastics
to rationalize doing the opposite of Jesus
By Stephen Mattson, Sojourners 24-3-2017

The Trial of Jesus

The Jewish priests expected the Messiah to come in like a Lion with great fanfare and overwhelming military might for subduing the enemies of Israel. They did not expect the Messiah to be born in humble circumstances or to grow up as a common craftsman.
Jesus threatened the authority and the lifestyle that the priests had grown accustomed to, as they grew very rich while helping the Roman authorities to maintain control over Israelite-controlles towns.
It must have been difficult for the Jewish Priests to consider that the promised Messiah would come as a threat to themselves, God's representatives to His own people. They viewed him as being opposed to the established authority that controlled the Temple and the People, which would likely seem contrary to what they might expect from the long-awaited Messiah.
As we debate the many troubling policy proposals coming from our current administration, Christians must focus on Jesus [the New Testament] above everything else — even our government, leaders, and comforts.
When we approach Jesus in an honest and innocent way ('be like a child') it’s obvious what type of actions Christ would be for and against.
The [New Testament] tells us clearly what type of person he was, and gives us countless examples to solidify his loving character...
But we find creative ways to excuse ourselves from following Christ, because we often find that his actions contradict our vested interests — our lifestyle, political views, and self-preserving worldview.

The problem for many Christians is that instead of asking themselves, “What would Jesus do?” they ask, “What does 'the Bible' say is permissible?”
Instead of emulating Jesus they prefer to “follow the Bible,” and for the questions that were previously asked above, they would respond with verses and spiritual principles justifying their actions...
If this sounds familiar, it’s because we see this happening in the New Testament. The Pharisees — “experts” in their law and faith — constantly questioned Jesus about what was permissible:
Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife? Teacher, which command in the law is the most important? Can you show us a miraculous sign from heaven to prove your authority?

Unfortunately, we can become so devoted to studying the Old Testament.., that we ignore Jesus [the New Testament].
The [New Testament] is pointing toward Christ.. So we should never make the mistake of valuing any verse over Christ.
Here is what Jesus tells us to do:
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”
And he said to him: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment.
And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matt. 26: 36-40)
This is the foundation of our faith — to love God and love others.

Sojourners are Christians who follow Jesus, but who also sojourn with others in different faith traditions and all those who are on a spiritual journey. We are evangelicals, Catholics, Pentecostals and Protestants; progressives and conservatives; blacks, whites, Latinos, and Asians; women and men; young and old. We reach into traditional churches but also out to those who can't fit into them. Together we seek to discover the intersection of faith, politics, and culture.

A religion of ethics became a religion of holy places

iran: defender of palestinian rights and jerusalem (a jewish idol) - hated for its principles

"When the Zionist community in Palestine established a state, something happened to Judaism there. The connection with the territory, the soil, changed the face of the religion, as it did to all other parts of national life.
It is no exaggeration to claim that the Jewish religion in Israel underwent a mutation, which has become more and more extreme in recent years.
A religion with a universal message became a tribal cult. A religion of ethics became a religion of holy places. Yeshayahu Leibowitz, a Jew of the old kind, defined the religion of the settlers as a pagan, idolatory cult.

Uri Avnery, Gush Shalom website, 18-9-2004

Idolatry and Blasphemy go hand in hand
American Humanist Association, posted by David, December 10, 2013

As Jesus started on His way, a man ran up and knelt before Him.
“Good Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
Why do you call Me good? Jesus replied,
“No one is good except God alone." Mark 10:18

How do we define “idolatry”?
Webster defines it as “the worship of a physical object as a god”, and also “immoderate attachment or devotion to something”. In the Ten Commandments, idolatry is treated as the making and creating of a “graven image” (carved, sculpted, engraved, etc.)
This emphasizes that it is a thing made by man and given god-like characteristics.
Many Protestants accuse the Catholics of “worshipping” the statues of Mary and thus committing idolatry.
Catholics, in the “Catechism of the Catholic Church”, say that “Idolatry not only refers to false pagan worship. Man commits idolatry whenever he honours and reveres a creature in place of God, whether this be gods, or demons, power, pleasure, race, ancestors, the state, money etc.”

It is ironic that the Commandment against worshipping graven images was supposedly engraved in a stone tablet and carried by Moses down the mountain to the people of Israel as they were worshipping the golden calf idol that had just been made.
I propose that 'the holy scriptures' (deification of human-made scriptures) of any religion is really idolatry.
Whether it be the Bible for Christians, the Koran for Muslims, or the Old Testament or Pentateuch for the Jews, these are the idols of the religious.
While Christians say that they believe in a god, and worship a god, it is really the Bible they worship. If you take away the Bible, there is no god for them to believe in and worship
Without the Koran or the Old Testament, there is no god to worship. It is the “Word” or revelation of a god that is the basis of their faith and belief and that is what describes how they are to worship. The same may be said of the teaching of Mary Baker Eddy and other religious cults who revere a book as holy writ.

When a religious group claims that a certain action is blasphemous, we see that the object of this blasphemy is really an object of their idolatry. If one idolizes the Bible, then they will see blasphemy when someone speaks against the Bible, or the god as represented in the Bible. The same with the Koran and Muhammad.
Muslims do not like the appellation of Muhammadism as that indicates they worship Muhammad, which they deny. Yet the fact that muslims call certain acts blasphemous against the prophet Muhammad, shows that they deify this personage.
The fact that Christians will call certain acts “blasphemous” when done regarding Christ or the Bible or the teachings in the Bible also show that these are the objects of their worship and deification.

And so blasphemy and idolatry go hand in hand. One cannot have blasphemy without a man/woman or a man-made object being first deified and worshipped as an idol.
As Humanists, we believe that nothing, no man-made object or even another man/woman, is higher than our own human nature. Nothing is considered divine as all is considered secular.
So as a Humanist, I have no definition of blasphemy that is meaningful to me. And as a Humanist, any man or man-made object which is placed as being higher than one’s human nature in order to command or proscribe my beliefs and actions is idolatry.

And [remember] when I inspired the disciples,
"Believe in Me and in My messenger Jesus." They said, "We have believed,
so bear witness that indeed we are Muslims [in submission to God]." (Quran 5:111)

Yildrim: Terrorists harm the people
Hurriyet Daily News, Turkey, April 2, 2017

Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım has said that it’s a crime against humanity to deny a language or a race, adding that no race is above the other.
“Who can say that a Kurd is superior to a Turk or a Laz is superior to a Circassian? Isn’t it to depreciate God’s creation to say that a race is superior? Isn’t it disrespectfulness against our prophet who said ‘I trampled on every type of racism and discrimination."
"We know that it’s a crime against humanity to denounce a race or a language....,” “a garden is a place where all colors, all types of flowers and all shades of green exist together.”

“Doesn’t one ask ‘Where are all the yellow ones?’ if a garden only consists of the color red? Can you call a garden with a single color a garden?
Everyone should know that we are Turks, Kurds, Zazas, Lazs, [the western province of] İzmir and Van. Kurdish, Turkish, Zaza language and Laz language belongs to us. We stand against those who separate the things God united. We just have to see the games being played,” he also said.
During his speech, Yıldırım said that plenty of businessmen “were forced to leave their investments and citizens were forced to migrate” due to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
“Don’t forget...: the compassionate hand, help and support of the state will always be with you. However, its iron fist will hit terrorists and those who make your lives difficult.
Our security forces will chase the terrorists, who act as the hitman of foreign intelligence services, wherever they go and neutralize them whenever they find them,” he also said.

aleppo:- NO to flowerpeople - YES to hatefull, destructive people

Saying that terrorists [PKK] harmed the people Yıldırım noted that “while the government was constructing, they were destroying.” “Aren’t they those who burn schools in order to prevent children from receiving education? Aren’t they those who abduct and kill engineers and workers in order to prevent roads and tunnels from being built?”

where have all the fowers gone?

sag mir wo die blumen sind

PressTV 2-4-2017: People across Iran celebrated Nature Day

The tradition of leaving the house on the thirteenth day of Farvardin is widespread throughout Iran. It is a day that is spent outside with joy, laughter and friendly get together.
This is the last phase of the celebrations of the New Year. It is the custom of many Iranians to pass as many hours as possible outdoors. People leave their homes to go to the parks or mountains for a picnic. The occasion is a communal one and all close relatives and friends will participate. Iranian families all eat alfresco, preferably near water springs and lush greener spots on this day. The occasion has no religious significance and is celebrated by all.

U.S. envoy to U.N: I am the Syrian people
By Paul Antonopoulos, Al-Masdar News, 04/04/2017

BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:00 A.M.) – The United States does not believe that the Syrian people want President Bashar al-Assad as their leader any longer, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, claimed on Monday that the Syrian people do not want President Bashar al-Assad as their leader any longer.
This comes as only days earlier the White House Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, said that the USA needs to accept the reality that removing Assad is no longer the priority in Syria, and rather the defeat of ISIS is.
We don’t think the people want Assad anymore; we don’t think that he is going to be someone that the people want to have,” Haley told a news conference to mark the U.S. presidency of the U.N. Security Council for April.
“We have no love for Assad. We’ve made that very clear. We think that he has been a hindrance to peace for a long time. He’s a war criminal. What he’s done to his people is nothing more than disgusting,” she said.

In the 2014 Syrian presidential elections, Assad won with an overwhelming majority of 88.7%, which saw Syrians were capita come out and vote in a higher participation then in previous elections.
The 2014 elections were observed by lawmakers from neutral countries such as India, Brazil and Uganda who all declared the process to be “free and fair” and held in a “democratic environment, contrary to Western propaganda”.

Indian Ambassador 2016: " Assad most popular Arab person in 2009"
Sputnik/Dmitriy Vinogradov, 16-1-2016

Former Ambassador of India in Damascus V.P. Haran confirmed that the Syrian war started not as result of an uprising against the Syrian President Bashar-al-Assad, but was instigated from the outside, Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten (DWN) reported.
According to Haran, external forces played a key role in fueling the Syrian conflict. The opposition in the country had supporters, including al-Qaeda and the Gulf States, which contributed to the destabilization of the country.
According to the diplomat, the Syrian economy was doing well at that time and the average growth rate was more than 5 percent. The unemployment rate reached 8 percent, but unemployed Syrians could find work in the Gulf States. All in all life in Syria was very peaceful, Haram explained.
Haran argued that Bashar al-Assad has always been a popular leader and therefore he is still in power. There is no adequate internal opposition and many of the problems in Syria come from foreign sources that are trying to get rid of the inconvenient regime, the ambassador explained, reminding that 67 percent of the entire Arab world had chosen Assad as the most popular Arab person voted in 2009.

President Bashar Al-Assad: personality of the year 2009, according to CNN Arabic Internet Edition, with a 67 percent of all the votes, in less than a month of a free click-and-vote-for opinion poll.
Earlier, on May 19, 2009, President Bashar Al-Assad was voted for as the most popular Arab Leader, according to a major survey of public opinion in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), released by the Brookings Institution and Zogby International.

flashback 2012 - turkey backed rebels and coupists invade aleppo

President Erdoğan rejects the dirty politics
of talking about peace while holding a gun
İbrahim Kalın, Daily Sabah, 4-4-2017

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's message of embracing the Kurds as equal citizens of the Republic has important implications beyond the April 16 referendum.
Speaking in Diyarbakır, President Erdoğan said that "we are ready to talk and walk with anyone who has something to say and a project to implement. Our only condition is that they shall not carry guns nor seek to divide the country and the nation."
Ever since the PKK unilaterally ended the peace process in 2015 and the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) squandered its role as a potential political actor, the president has been saying that he will reach out to the Kurds themselves, including community leaders, political figures, ordinary citizens, businessmen, NGOs and others, to address their issues.

The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by the European Union and the United States, and best known for its barbaric terrorism not only against the Turkish state but also against Kurds who do not subscribe to their ideology....
Most Kurds are disillusioned with both the PKK and the HDP, and want peace, security and prosperity as opposed to oppression.
This is exactly what the president promised in Diyarbakır. "Just as we cannot imagine Turkey without Istanbul, Izmir, Trabzon, Antalya and Erzurum, we cannot imagine Turkey without Diyarbakır," he said.
President Erdoğan rejects the PKK's dirty politics of talking about peace while holding a gun. He rejects the HDP's pretension to be a voice for the Kurds when it speaks first and foremost for the PKK. The reality is that the HDP has never shown the courage to question and reject the PKK during and after the peace process initiated by Erdoğan himself.

No government would accept any political interlocutor that seeks to grant legitimacy to armed struggle by supporting the PKK while enjoying the privileges of parliamentary politics. This is like acquiescing to the demands of the IRA in Northern Ireland, ETA in Spain or FARC in Colombia to continue armed struggle while calling for political recognition or peace.
Those European governments that give a free ride to the various PKK installments in their countries and seeking to use them against Turkey are not only violating their own principles but also engaging in a self-defeating strategy.

Poll: 70% of Israelis prefer right-wing government
Andrew Tobin, Arutz Sheva, 4/04/2017

According to the latest monthly Peace Index, published Tuesday by the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University, 70% of Israelis prefer a right-wing government. Only 24 percent of the country prefers a left-wing or center-left government.
Fully 81 percent of Jews said they think a right-wing or center-right government is likely to be elected, compared to just 8 percent who said they see a left-wing or center-left government coming to power.
Among Arab Israelis, 58 percent said they want a left-wing government, but only 10 percent predicted this would happen if elections were held in the near future.
A series of polls in recent months have shown Yair Lapid, the head of the centrist Yesh Atid party, challenging Netanyahu for the premiership in snap elections. Known to read the public mood, Lapid last week said he would try to form a national unity government if given the opportunity.

Omar H. Rahman: Palestinian Justice versus Israeli Security
Yair Lapid reveals true nature of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
972 Magazine, October 10, 2013

During a recent interview with Charlie Rose in New York, Yair Lapid tacitly reveals why the Israeli-Palestinian conflict endures and why Israel will only accept peace on its own terms.
Rose begins on the Palestinian issue by inquiring as to the differences between Lapid and Prime Minister Netanyahu over Palestinian recognition of Israel as a “Jewish” state. Lapid replies by saying that such recognition is not important.
Lapid says the Israeli non-Jewish minority should have its rights, like any minority, but that Israel is a Jewish state, and he aims to keep it that way.
We need to separate ourselves from the Palestinians. It is not marriage that I am seeking, it is a decent divorce.
The problem with this negotiation is that the Israelis and Palestinians want two very different things: the Palestinians want peace and justice; the Israelis want peace and security. And we will always be in conflict there.

Rose catches the significance of that statement, inquiring:
Are you saying you can’t have justice for the Palestinians and security for the Israelis?
This is where Lapid begins to get a little flustered, not losing his cool, but clearly not knowing how to answer without being completely forthright. He says that justice and security are possible but that the two parties want different things and therefore it takes time.
Rose continues to press him, asking, “What about the Palestinians’ interest in justice are you not prepared to give them – if you were prime minister or King David.” Lapid continues to squirm, at which point Rose calls Lapid out for being evasive and then lets him off the hook.

Yuli Novak: 'We will build a moral society here'
972 Magazine, 2-4-2017

On Saturday night, thousands of Palestinians and Jews gathered in Jerusalem for an anti-occupation protest marking 50 years since the occupation began. Breaking the Silence head Yuli Novak spoke to demonstrators about the importance of solidarity and resistance to the violence and racism of the Israeli government.

These are dark, somber days. Our country is dominated by occupation, messianism, racism, ignorance, callousness, and violence. Blaming the right-wing government won’t help. Nor will sitting in our living rooms fantasizing about the day they’ll be replaced. And please, enough with the “Anyone but Bibi” rhetoric — Yair Lapid is no different.
The change we need to enact here requires courage, honesty, and the willingness to sacrifice something – the willingness to give up privileges and pay a price. Show me one politician – one! – who wants to be prime minister and is also willing to do this.

During dark days like these marked by daily violence, intensifying hatred, terrible racism, the occupation, there’s only one way to win: resistance.
Struggle. Solidarity. That’s it. Resistance — that’s our strength and the regime’s weakness. Joining struggles is our hope, and what will bring about the collapse of the regime. Solidarity is our civil power, and the regime’s greatest fear. And there’s nothing more frightening for bad regimes than the moment when citizens stand up, resist, and fearlessly struggle.
When Palestinians do so in nonviolent demonstrations in the occupied territories — in Bil’in, in Hebron, in Sheikh Jarrah — the regime’s response will always involve violence and force. This is why we need to join forces...

I say these things here, in Jerusalem. A city whose streets have been dominated by uninhibited, violent, racist, right-wing gangs. A city led by a racist, opportunistic mayor. A capital that bears no semblance to justice and equality.
So yes, I’m calling for us all to join forces in our struggle, here and now. To fight for our truths. To give our all for our future. And to give hope. It’s time to face our fears, the painful but liberating truth: It’s not just Netanyahu. It’s not just Naftali Bennett. It’s not just Yair Lapid. And it’s certainly not Isaac Herzog. It’s us. This struggle is about who we are and who we will be.
Here and now, we say loud and clear: You’ll go on with your violence, and our solidarity will prevail. You’ll continue with your repression, and justice will prevail. You’ll continue to occupy, and the occupation will end...
The occupation will collapse. And then we’ll build a moral democratic society here...

Israel’s Occupation - By Daniel Larison, April 4, 2017

It should be uncontroversial to acknowledge that ever since the 1967 war Israel has occupied territory that does not legally belong to it, and for almost fifty years Palestinians living in that territory have been living under a foreign government’s occupation.
In the past, hard-liners in the U.S. have openly supported the occupation or at least refused to criticize it, but now they are pretending that the occupation isn’t what it obviously is. This is part fantasy and part propaganda to cover for a policy that should have been ended decades ago.
Even George W. Bush plainly referred to “the occupation that began in 1967” and even called for an end to it...

Rebel warehouse with chem weapons hit by Syrian airstrike in Idlib
RT (Russian News), 5-4-2017

The Syrian Air Force has destroyed a warehouse in Idlib province, where chemical weapons were being produced and stockpiled before being shipped to Iraq, Russia’s Defense Ministry spokesman said.>R> The strike, which was launched midday Tuesday, targeted a major rebel ammunition depot east of the town of Khan Sheikhoun, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Major-General Igor Konashenkov said in a statement.
The warehouse was used to both produce and store shells containing toxic gas, Konashenkov said. The shells were delivered to Iraq and repeatedly used there, he added, pointing out that both Iraq and international organizations have confirmed the use of such weapons by militants.
The same chemical munitions were used by militants in Aleppo, where Russian military experts took samples in late 2016, Konashenkov said.

According to the statement, Khan Sheikhoun civilians, who recently suffered a chemical attack, displayed identical symptoms to those of Aleppo chemical attack victims.
At least 58 people, including 11 children, reportedly died and scores were injured. Soon after a missile allegedly hit the facility, people started showing symptoms of chemical poisoning, such as choking and fainting. The victims were reportedly also seen with foam coming out of their mouths.
While the major Syrian opposition group, the Syrian National Coalition, and other pro-rebel groups put the blame on the attack onto President Bashar Assad’s government, the Syrian military dismissed all allegations as propaganda by the rebels.

Looking behind the victim mask

islamic fundamentalism in syria

Flashback 2015: Al Qaeda, allies seize Syria’s Idlib city in blow to regime

BEIRUT, Mar 28,2015: Al Qaeda's Syrian affiliate and its allies seized the city of Idlib.
The coalition that seized Idlib city is made up of Al Nusra Front, the official Syrian affiliate of Al Qaeda, and several Islamist factions.
"Al Nusra Front and its allies have captured all of Idlib," the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
The jihadist group announced the capture of the northwestern city on its official Twitter accounts.
"Thanks be to God, the city of Idlib has been liberated," it wrote.
The first provincial capital to fall was Raqqa, in the north, which was seized by rebels in March 2013. The rebels were subsequently ousted by Daesh terror group, which has made Raqa the de factor Syrian capital of its self-proclaimed Islamic “caliphate” in Syria and Iraq.
Idlib province as a whole is a bastion of Al Nusra, which ousted several rebel groups, including Western-backed organisations, from the region in November. (Jordan Times)

jolani-nusra leader, salafist rebel cleric, rebel flags

Flashback 2017: Al Qaeda eulogizes Egyptian leader killed in Idlib, Syria
By Thomas Joscelyn | March 5, 2017

As Sahab, the propaganda arm for al Qaeda’s senior leadership, has released a two-page eulogy for Abu al Khayr al Masri. The US killed Masri in a drone strike in Idlib, Syria in late February.
Al Qaeda praises Masri as a “martyr,” saying he was targeted in a “crusader raid” in Syria.
Masri’s jihadist journey lasted nearly “three decades.” During this time he suffered “many calamities and tribulations,” including the “plight of prison.” But al Qaeda praises Masri for his “toughness and determination” to continue on the jihadist path despite these setbacks and his illness.
Masri traveled to Syria, where he joined the fight against Bashar al Assad’s regime and its “associates.”
In 2016, Masri oversaw the rebranding of Al Nusrah Front, the largest paramilitary force in al Qaeda’s history. He also worked to unify rebel groups in Syria.

Al Qaeda’s eulogy also highlights Masri’s relationship with Osama bin Laden, saying the two worked closely together in Afghanistan. Masri served as al Qaeda’s “representative” in “meetings with the Islamic Emirate,” meaning the Afghan Taliban, according to the eulogy.

Russia to continue Syria military op in support of Assad
RT (Russia) 5-4-2017

Moscow will continue to support Syrian Army troops in their anti-terrorism effort, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, after being asked whether Russian policy had changed following a reported chemical attack in the Idlib province.
Peskov cited the opinion of the Russian military, which said the contamination may have been caused by damage to a rebel chemical weapons storage site.
“You have heard the statement from the Russian Defense Ministry and I have nothing to add to the facts they stated. The Russian Federation and its military are continuing the operation to support the anti-terrorism operation and liberation of the country, which is being conducted by the Syrian armed forces,” Peskov said.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova suggested later on Wednesday that the Security Council should urge the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to launch a fact-finding mission, provided that full access to the incident site is allowed.
Staffan de Mistura, UN special envoy for Syria, said reliable evidence would be needed to confirm the alleged use of chemical weapons, let alone establish who was responsible for it. “We have no yet any official or reliable confirmation..."

Vladimir Safronkov: "Everything is guided by regime change"
By Richard Brandt, ICH, 5-4-2017

Twitter was flooded with commentary about Nikki Haley's call to arms against Russia during the Security Council meeting on Wednesday afternoon. But no one bothered to report what Russia had to say.
Russia's deputy United Nations ambassador Vladimir Safronkov said that the West's "obsession with regime change is what hinders this Security Council."
He noted that for Washington and its partners, "everything is guided by regime change" and allegations that Assad used chemical weapons in an attack in Idlib province on Tuesday are based on "falsified reports from the White Helmets", an organization that has been "discredited long ago".
He further added that "taking [the White Helmets] at face value is not professional and not serious."
Safronkov pointed out that "the White Helmets are getting mixed up in their reports. Their versions keep changing. They speak of bombs from helicopters, then from planes".
Russia's UN representative observed that in "photos and videos we see the White Helmets acting very unprofessionally. Their behavior is very relaxed in these extreme circumstances. All of this is clearly meant to provoke. All of this has been reflected in the resolution."
Russia's representative finished by slamming the UK for blaming Russia for the deaths of children in Syria. He said that the UK "does nothing" for Syria except "submit drafts meant to provoke" and "pressure investigations" into reporting politically favorable results.

Kremlin: Only the expulsion of terrorists from the Syrian territory
can bring the country back to peace where children will not die
FARS News, 5-4-2017

syria - damascus 2013 - no response from the international community

TEHRAN (FNA)- Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that the use of chemical weapons in Syria's Idlib is a "dangerous and monstrous crime", but it is premature to accuse anyone of using chemical weapons as a probe is needed about the incident.
"Deaths of children is what Russia is trying to prevent in Syria…, and Russia is actively working on it, because only the expulsion of terrorists from the Syrian territory can bring the country back to peace where children will not die."
Russia hopes that the Syrian government will work on preventing terrorists from obtaining chemical weapons, he said. He emphasized that all must be done to prevent chemical attacks in the war-torn country.
"We believe that it is absolutely unacceptable to use chemical weapons. We believe that all should be done to prevent the possibility of chemical weapons use in Syria. And of cource, we can hope that the Syrian Armed Forces will take all necessary measures to prevent some substances which can be used as chemical weapons from getting into terrorists' hands and being used by them."

Syrian opposition claimed Tuesday forces loyal to President Bashar Assad had used a chemical gas on people in the Northwestern province, killing nearly 80 and injuring 200. Assad argued his government has no chemical weapons after agreeing to have them destroyed in 2013. He also ruled out having used chemicals against own people.
In 2013, the Syrian authorities agreed to transfer its stockpiled chemical weapons to international control for their subsequent destruction, so as to prevent them from falling into the hands of militants operating in the country.

Why U.S. Troops May Fight Alongside al-Qaeda in Yemen
By Michael Horton, The American Conservative, April 5, 2017

The Trump administration has indicated that it will increase its support for Saudi Arabia’s war against Yemen’s Houthi rebels.
The Saudi-led war, which began two years ago, has achieved little beyond killing thousands, destroying much of Yemen’s infrastructure, empowering al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), and pushing millions to the brink of famine.
The war is being waged with few ethical constraints: Saudi Arabia has targeted funerals, schools, factories, and farms. Most recently, a boat full of refugees fleeing Yemen was attacked by an Apache helicopter. That attack killed 42 people.
The excuse being given for increased U.S. involvement in an incredibly complex civil war is that the Houthis are controlled and armed by Iran.
This is a narrative that has been in play for years despite little proof of consistent Iranian support for the Houthis and no proof that the Houthis follow Iranian orders.
While there is little doubt that Iran has—at times—provided limited assistance to the Houthis, there remains scant evidence of a concerted effort by Iran to arm and fund the Houthis. It most certainly exercises no control over them.
What these reports and most of the international media studiously ignore is the tremendous amount of light and heavy weaponry that Saudi Arabia and the UAE have sent and are continuing to send to Yemen, ostensibly to arm anti-Houthi militias. In what is a clear parallel with Syria, many of these militias have been infiltrated by al-Qaeda operatives.
AQAP (al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula), which has already been greatly aided by the war in Yemen, will benefit from increased U.S. involvement. It will profit from the weakening of the Houthis—AQAP’s most formidable enemy—and from the perception, which it will foster, that the U.S. is invading Yemen.

Turkey ready to support US military action in Syria if realized'
Daily Sabah, 5-4-2017

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Thursday that he welcomed reports of U.S. President Donald Trump considering military action in Syria, adding that Trump should back up his plans with action.
Speaking in a live broadcast on Turkey's Kanal 7, Erdoğan said that Turkey is ready to do its part if such military action takes place.
The president also said that Russian President Vladimir Putin had questioned whether the regime forces were behind the chemical attack in Syria's Idlib during their talks.
"It is sad if he still did not understand for the last few days that Assad is the party responsible," Erdoğan said.
Trump told some members of the U.S. Congress late Thursday that he is considering military intervention in Syria upon the Assad regime's recent Idlib chemical attack, according to reports.

Flashback: Nabil Fayyad, 4-8-2012
"No, this is not my kind of revolution!"

Oh, we were very romantic! We were dreamers, too! We expected the Arab Spring to invade our country from all sides, from south to north, from east to west. We were expecting freedom that had been stolen from us for the last fifty years!
I remember with a tug at my heartstrings the beginning of the movement in Syria! It was Daraa, and we applauded Daraa and its young men; and then it was Homs and its new clock where thousands of citizens of all faiths were thronging, calling for the resignation of the governor...
And then, without warning, without respite, the beautiful movement fell apart, once Ramadan was over...
Arourism appeared!

The start of the revolution

Sheikh Arour is a Salafist cleric who tirelessly teaches hatred of others on the Salafist Al Wissal channel, funded by Saudi Arabia. 80% of the Free Syrian Army units (including the Al-Qaeda brigades), principally managed by Turkey, recognised the Takfirist Sheikh Adnan Al-Arour as their spiritual leader.

The young people disappeared from the Nasiriyah airport, poor and faithful to the core, they whose whole concern was to take me gently when I criticized the regime, they suddenly became the leaders of the Free Syrian Army.
And battalions appeared, sectarian by name and content! Then came the slaughter of innocents according to their identity card! Coarse, puritanical language spread, which just reminds us of the late Bin Laden and his henchman Al Zawahiri!

Adolescents filled opposition television screens presenting themselves to viewers as if they were so many Robespierres, Dantons, or Voltaires, but in language as prosaic as their faces and studded with pea-sized Qur’anic quotations to match their brains!
There are old retired army officers proclaiming their dissent from the armed forces in language that Salafism makes outdated!
Under the banner of “freedom” all the Christians are expelled from old Homs! And under this same banner, old Sunni Homs is destroyed!

the destruction of libya 2011-2012

US Launches Dozens of Tomahawk Cruise Missiles at Targets in Syria
Sputnik News, 7-4-2017

US President Donald Trump has addressed the nation after authorising a targeted missile strike on an airbase in Syria
In his speech he said that he had ordered a missile strike on airbase in Syria from which as he claims the Idlib chemical attack was launched. Trump claimed that Syrian President Bashar Assad had used deadly nerve agent to kill many people, calling "all civilized nations to end the slaughter and bloodshed in Syria
The missile strike on Syrian airfield was in "vital national security interest" of the United States, Trump said, adding that it is in interests of the country to prevent the spread and use of chemical weapons.
"Tonight I ordered [strikes on Syrian airfield]," Trump said. "Tonight I call on all civilized nations to join us in seeking to end this slaughter," Trump said after ordering the strikes on the Syrian airfield, adding that "[Syrian President Bashar] Assad choked out the lives of men, women, children" and that the chemical attack was "very barbaric."
Earlier, Around 70 Tomahawk cruise missiles were launched on Thursday night at the military airfield in Ash Sha’irat 38 kilometers southeast of the city of Homs.

bush:iraq - obama:libya - trump:syria

US Department of Defense spokesperson Eric Pahon said that the missile strike at the Shayrat (Ash Sha’irat) Airfield in Homs Governorate, Syria, represented a unilateral action by the United States: "It was a unilateral action by the United States," Pahon stated on Thursday.
Also, US Department of Defense Spokesman Capt. Jeff Davis said that the US missile strike at the Shayrat (Ash Sha’irat) Airfield in Homs Governorate, Syria, degraded the ability of Syrian President Bashar Assad's government to deliver chemical weapons. "Initial indications are that this strike has severely damaged or destroyed Syrian aircraft and support infrastructure and equipment at Shayrat Airfield.

Senator Rand Paul said that Donald Trump should have asked for authorization from Congress before launching the Thursday missile strike against a military field in Syria
"The President needs Congressional authorization for military action as required by the Constitution," Paul wrote in a message via Twitter on Thursday. "Our prior interventions in this region have done nothing to make us safer and Syria will be no different."

Putin: Strikes on a military airfield in Syria violates international law

The United States’ missile strikes on a military airfield in Syria violates international law and represents an act of aggression against a sovereign state under a far-fetched pretext, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Friday.
“President [Vladimir] Putin regards the US attacks on Syria as an aggression against a sovereign state in violation of the norms of international law, and under a trumped-up pretext at that,” Peskov told reporters.
Russian President Vladimir Putin also sees the latest US missile strikes on a military airfield in Syria as an attempt to distract from the mounting civilian casualties in Iraq, the Kremlin added.
“At the same time, in Putin’s opinion, total disregard for the use of chemical weapons by terrorists only drastically aggravates the situation,” Peskov said

Turkey welcomes US missile attack
Daily Sabah, 7-4-2017

Stephen Schwarz, 2-8-2016: "Ibrahim Kalin, a weaponized academic trained in the U.S. has risen to become Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's deputy undersecretary and senior advisor, yet another servant for Islamist ideology produced by the American Middle East studies industry."

Turkey welcomed on Friday the U.S. missile attack against the Assad regime airbase in Syria.. Presidential Spokesperson İbrahim Kalın said that Turkey considers the strikes against Sharyat airbase a positive response to "Assad regime's war crimes."
"The destruction of Sharyat airbase marks an important step to ensure that chemical and conventional attacks against the civilian population do not go unpunished" Kalın said in a statement, adding that it is necessary to create no-fly zones and safe zones immediately to prevent such massacres in the nearfuture.

Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmuş said that Turkey hopes U.S. operation in Syria contributes to achieving peace, and that the process must be accelerated.
"The barbarism of the Assad regime must be stopped as soon as possible", Kurtulmuş said, adding that the international community should take action in this regard.

aleppo: offices of turkey backed rebels

The US missile strikes on a military airfield in Syria’s Homs province serve the goals of "armed terrorist groups," Talal Barazi , the governor of the province, told the Al Ikhbaria TV channel.
"Syrian leadership and Syrian policy won’t change," Talal Barazi said. "This is not the first attack and I don't believe it will be the last," he added. (Tass Russian News Agency, 7-4-2017)

Elvin Lim: "The ever-increasing pressure for presidents to manage public opinion and perception
has created a "pathology of vacuous rhetoric and imagery" where gesture and appearance matter
more than accomplishment and fact." (from: 'The anti-intellectual presidency')

Lavrov: "They did not even bother to provide any facts"
Moscow will demand truth of Idlib events
TASS Russian News Agency, April 07, 2017

The US missile attack on a Syrian airbase is an act of aggression under a far-fetched pretext and is reminiscent of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Friday. "It is an act of aggression under a completely far-fetched pretext," the top diplomat stated.
"This is reminiscent of the situation in 2003, when the US and the UK, along with some of their allies, invaded Iraq without the consent of the UN Security Council and in violation of international law."
"When speaking about the military intervention in Iraq many years after it happened, Tony Blair (who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1997 to 2007) acknowledged that they had misled everybody," Lavrov emphasized.
"Now they did not even bother to provide any facts referring only to photos," he noted. "They indulged in speculations on children’s photos, on evidence provided by various non-governmental organizations, including the so-called White Helmets, which staged various 'incidents' to instigate action against the Syrian government."
Moscow will demand truth of Idlib events, Lavrov stressed. "I don’t know when we will be able to find out how the US made the decision to attack Syria. But we must demand that the truth be unveiled and we will do it," the Russian foreign minister said.
"It looks like they wanted to distract attention from the notorious Jabhat al-Nusra, which is still viewed by some countries as an optional force to be used for disrupting the negotiation process and to topple the current regime," Lavrov stressed

"It is regrettable that all these causes do more harm to the already damaged relations between Russia and the United States. Hope remains that these provocations will not entail irreversible effects," Lavrov said.

Trump & Erdogan: ‘doers’ not ‘thinkers’.
Çağlar Ezikoğlu, Independent Turkey website, 24-11-2016

Anti-intellectualism has always had populist roots. Marcus Porcius Cato, or Cato the Elder, was a famous, conservative Roman senator-consul, and one the first anti-intellectual politicians to leave a mark on the historical record.
His anti-intellectualism was based on anti-Hellenism, which saw Greek ideas and Greek philosophy as a threat to Roman tradition. As the ancient Greek historian Plutarch (c. 46- c. 119 A.D.) recorded:
“[Cato] was wholly averse to philosophy, and made mock of all Greek culture and training, out of patriotic zeal. He says, for instance, that Socrates was a mighty prattler… [and] a turbulent windbag”.
There are striking similarities between illiberal leaders no matter where they are currently gaining strength in the world. We see Cato the Elder reincarnated in Erdoğan and Trump... Like Trump, Erdoğan characterizes himself as a ‘doer’ not a ‘thinker’.
Erdoğan, like Cato the Elder and, it would seem, like Donald Trump, is not fond of intellectuals, elites or academics. This may explain why, despite Trump’s virulent Islamophobia, Erdoğan and his supporters were pleased by the businessman’s victory in US election. As far as their authoritarian, populist leadership style goes, the two men seem to be soul mates.

In interviews, Donald Trump has said that he makes his decisions “with very little knowledge other than the knowledge I [already] had, plus the words ‘common sense,’ because I have a lot of common sense and I have a lot of business ability.”
He believes that experts often “can’t see the forest for the trees,” and that in contrast, people respect his ability to quickly and instinctively reach the right decision: “A lot of people said, ‘man, he was more accurate than guys who have studied it all the time.’ “

Turkish society is embracing an increasingly anti-intellectual disposition
By A. Kadir Yildirim, Washington Post, January 16, 2016

Turkey is making international news. And, unsurprisingly, the news is gloomy yet again. Emboldened by his party’s electoral victory in November 2015, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has set out on a crusade against academics...
What are the undercurrents of this troubling chapter in Turkish politics? Two dynamics are at work.

--- First, Turkish society is embracing an increasingly anti-intellectual disposition. The value of an educated person is judged less by her inherent intellectual qualities and more by the ideological support she can offer for a political cause or the immediate material benefits her position accrues.
A culture of intellectual exchange has largely waned; academics are reduced merely to their ideologies. Even the best universities in Turkey fail to surmount the monumental challenge posed by anti-intellectualism and ideological schisms. Hiring processes, grant decisions and tenure awards are increasingly determined by non-academic factors.

--- Second, power politics is on full display. While most other sectors of Turkish society – including the media, Kurds, Alevis and Gulen movement affiliated groups – have been under attack for the past several years, surprisingly, academics were left relatively unscathed in this increasingly repressive political environment. But this latest episode has changed that. It is becoming undeniably clear that Erdogan and his party have little tolerance for dissent.

The anti-intellectualism endemic in Turkish society is best illustrated by those who wield political power.
The Islamist-leaning AKP displays a fetish for political power, which reveals itself as anti-intellectualism par excellence. Scholarly activity and accumulation of knowledge are no match to erecting school buildings. Erdogan himself has displayed this attitude on multiple occasions. For example, he crassly mocked Ekmeleddin İhsanoğlu (holder of a doctoral degree) for being too educated.
Along the same lines, in his attacks against the petition-signing academics, Erdogan charged them with being “fifth columns” of foreign powers and “so-called intellectuals.”
This latest effort by Erdogan amounts to no less than a redesign of academia in his own image, as in many other sectors of life in the country.

Kadir Yildirim is a research scholar at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy. His main research interests include democratization, political economy, political Islam, the politics of the Middle East and Turkish politics.

Pence thanks Netanyahu for Israel's support
Arutz Sheva, 7-4-2017

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on Friday telephoned Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and thanked him, on behalf of President Donald Trump, for Israel's strong support for the American action in Syria. Pence and Netanyahu emphasized the strength of the alliance between Israel and the U.S.
Earlier on Friday, Netanyahu and other government officials expressed their support for Donald Trump's decision to launch a series of strikes in Syria Thursday night.
"Israel fully supports President Trump's decision and hopes that this message of resolve in the face of the Assad regime's horrific actions will resonate not only in Damascus, but in Tehran, Pyongyang and elsewhere," Prime Minister Netanyahu said following the attack.
President Reuven Rivlin also expressed his support for the strikes.
"In the face of the terrible use of chemical weapons against innocent civilians, the clear and determined steps of the US Administration and Military under the leadership of President Trump, constitute a fitting and appropriate response to such unthinkable brutality," Rivlin said.
"In acting as it has, the United States serves as an example to the entire free world...

Christian Zionism is the largest, most controversial and most destructive lobby within Christianity. It bears primary responsibility for perpetuating tensions in the Middle East, justifying Israel’s apartheid colonialist agenda and for undermining the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians.

Christian Zionism: The Heresy that Undermines Middle East Peace
By Rev Dr Stephen Sizer, Middle East Monitor, 29-1-2014

At least one in four American Christians surveyed recently by Christianity Today magazine said that they believe it is their biblical responsibility to support the nation of Israel. This view is known as Christian Zionism. The Pew Research Center put the figure at 63 per cent among white evangelicals.
Christian Zionism is pervasive within mainline American evangelical, charismatic and independent denominations including the Assemblies of God, Pentecostals and Southern Baptists, as well as many of the independent mega-churches.
It is less prevalent within the historic denominations, which show a greater respect for the work of the United Nations, support for human rights, the rule of international law and empathy with the Palestinians.

The origins of the movement can be traced to the early 19th century when a group of eccentric British Christian leaders began to lobby for Jewish restoration to Palestine as a necessary precondition for the return of Christ.
The movement gained traction from the middle of the 19th century when Palestine became strategic to British, French and German colonial interests in the Middle East.
Proto-Christian Zionism therefore preceded Jewish Zionism by more than 50 years. Some of Theodore Herzl’s strongest advocates were Christian clergy.

Lionel Richie sings 'Jesus is Love'
"Teach them to love one another,
That Heaven might find a place in their hearts"

Zionism is NOT about Love, it's about Zion...

Christian Zionism as a modern theological and political movement embraces the most extreme ideological positions of Zionism. It has become deeply detrimental to a just peace between Palestine and Israel.
It propagates a worldview in which the Christian message is reduced to an ideology of empire, colonialism and militarism.
In its extreme form, it places an emphasis on apocalyptic events leading to the end of history rather than living Christ’s love and justice today.

Christian Zionists have shown varying degrees of enthusiasm for implementing six basic political convictions that arise from their ultra-literal and fundamentalist theology:
--- 1.The belief that the Jews remain God’s chosen people leads Christian Zionists to seek to bless Israel in material ways. However, this also invariably results in the uncritical endorsement of and justification for Israel’s racist and apartheid policies, in the media, among politicians and through solidarity tours to Israel.
--- 2. As God’s chosen people, the final restoration of the Jews to Israel is therefore actively encouraged, funded and facilitated through partnerships with the Jewish Agency.
--- 3. Eretz Israel, as delineated in scripture, from the Nile to the Euphrates, belongs exclusively to the Jewish people, therefore the land must be annexed, Palestinians driven from their homes and the illegal Jewish settlements expanded and consolidated.
--- 4. Jerusalem is regarded as the eternal and exclusive capital of the Jews, and cannot be shared with the Palestinians. Therefore, strategically, Christian Zionists have lobbied the US Administration to relocate its embassy to Jerusalem and thereby ensure that Jerusalem is recognised as the capital of Israel.
--- 5. Christian Zionists offer varying degrees of support for organisations such as the Jewish Temple Mount Faithful who are committed to destroying the Dome of the Rock and rebuilding the Jewish Temple on the Haram Al-Sharif (Noble sanctuary of Al-Aqsa).
--- 6. Christian Zionists invariably have a pessimistic view of the future, convinced that there will be an apocalyptic war of Armageddon in the imminent future. They are deeply sceptical of the possibility of a lasting peace between Jews and Arabs and therefore oppose the peace process.

The Revd Dr Stephen Sizer is the Vicar of Christ Church in Virginia Water and the author of Christian Zionism: Road-map to Armageddon? Zion’s Christian Soldiers? and In the Footsteps of Jesus and the Apostles
On November 2, 2016, UK’s Jewish Lobby, the British Board of Jewish Deputies, announced that pro-Palestinian Church of England Vicar Stephen Sizer will end his clerical career, after breeching a term of agreement with Bishops of the Crypto Jew Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby on not discussing Israel.

Cool Minds or Big Ego's? That's the question
by Gilbert Doctorow,, April 08, 2017

With his bigger than life ego, petulance and stubbornness, Commander-in-Chief Trump is potentially a greater threat to world peace than the weak-willed Barack Obama whom he replaced.
Trump has ignored Russian calls for an investigation into the alleged chemical gas attack in Idlib province before issuing conclusions on culpability, as happened within hours of the event.
He has accepted a narrative that is very possibly a false flag produced by anti-government rebels in Syria, disseminated by the White Helmets and other phony NGO’s paid from Washington and London. He ordered the firing of 50 or more Tomahawk missiles against a Syrian Government air base in Homs province, thereby crossing all Russian “red lines” in Syria.

Until this point, the Kremlin has chosen not to react to all signs coming from Washington that Trump’s determination to change course on Russia and global hegemony was failing.
Putin has a cool mind and we may anticipate that the Russian response will come at a time of his choosing and in a manner that is appropriate to the seriousness of the US offense.
In the meantime, we who have been hoping for a change of direction, for the rooting out of the Neocons and Liberal hawks directing the Deep State should drop what we are doing, and help form a grass roots political statement that Donald Trump and the political establishment will hear loud and clear.
One way or another, the White House must be told that arranging foreign policy moves out of purely domestic calculations, such as likely happened yesterday puts the nation’s very existence at risk.

A Game Of Thrones
Attack on Syrian Airbase Proves Unpredictability of US Foreign Policy
FARS News Agency, 8-4-2017

TEHRAN (FNA)- The US missile strikes in Syria have proven that the US is "the most unpredictable state in the world," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
"I think it has been confirmed one more time that the policies and everything that currently happens in the US prove a disappointing fact: it is the most unpredictable state. And if there is something predictable in the US, it is the unpredictability of its foreign policy, Maria Zakharova (official representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation), said
The absence of a clear strategy in Washington is related to the wars of elites in DC, Maria Zakharova said.
"I would call it the game of American thrones. It is a war of internal political clans, military-financial, political and financial structures that cannot accept the results of the election."
"And the policies of London and other members of the North Atlantic Alliance (NATO) have always been based on Washington's course. For us it was not a surprise," Zakharova noted.
The US attack in Syria has nothing to do with attempts to find out the truth about the use of chemical weapons in Idlib, ministry's spokeswoman said.
"They (the United States) have just demanded to conduct an investigation regarding the equipment, the aircraft, used in (Khan Sheikhoun) strikes. And then they carry out a strike on the equipment, they would like to examine, to analyze."

Zakharova also pointed out that Russia had a number of questions to the United States regarding its strikes on Syria airfield, adding that the questions would be addressed to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who is set to visit Russia next week.

Personal Integrity: Rex Tillerson issues a challenge
Scouting Magazine, August 6, 2015

At the National Order of the Arrow Conference’s Gathering of Eagles, Rex Tillerson issued a challenge to every Eagle Scout...
He said that Eagle Scouts are expected to continue to act with personal integrity.

To illustrate this point, he talked about structural integrity, a key part of his job. He gestured to the 40-year-old building everyone was sitting in. You trust in the structural integrity of this building, he said, and that it won’t fall down on everyone. You don’t even think about it.
Personal integrity, he said, works the same way. “People trust you. They count on you,” he said.

“Your personal integrity, once established and earned, people don’t have to think about it. They know. They know you. They know you’ll do the right thing every time.”

Trump’s Syria Strike Is Latest Sign of Steve Bannon’s Waning Influence
By Gabriel Sherman, New York Magazine, 7-4-2017

Donald Trump’s surprise decision to launch missile strikes against Syrian president Bashar al-Assad’s forces in response to Tuesday’s horrific chemical attack represented a reversal from Trump’s noninterventionist campaign message.
It’s also the most recent sign of the declining power of his chief strategist Stephen Bannon.
Two sources close to Bannon told me the former Breitbart executive chairman argued against the strike — not because of its questionable constitutionality, but on the grounds that it doesn’t advance Trump’s America First doctrine. “Steve doesn’t think we belong there,” one Bannon ally told me.
Bannon’s position lost out to those inside the White House, including Jared Kushner, who argued Trump needed to punish the Assad regime.

In recent weeks, Kushner and Bannon have clashed over the direction of Trump’s agenda. While the press has covered it as a personality feud, Bannon allies say the rift is about policy differences....
On a board in his West Wing office, Bannon keeps a list of promises Trump made to populist voters. Kushner, whose portfolio has ballooned in recent weeks, seems much less interested in keeping those promises.
The power struggle is growing more personal. While Bannon declined to comment for this piece, Bannon allies inside and outside the White House say he is “disappointed” and blames Kushner, in part, for some of the damaging leaks about him. If before there were philosophical differences in the White House, now there are clearly defined camps...
Despite his waning influence, Bannon recently told an ally that he won’t quit. If Trump wants him out, he’ll have to fire him.

No prove of existence of chemical weapons at Syrian airfield
Sputnik News, 8-4-2017

The Pentagon and the US State Department have failed to prove the existence of chemical weapons at the Syrian airfield struck by US cruise missiles, the Russian Defense Ministry said Saturday.
"After 24 hours after the US Navy warships launched a massive strike by cruise missile on the Sha'irat [airfield in Syria], neither the Pentagon, nor the US State Department have presented proof of the presence of chemical weapons there," ministry's spokesman Igor Konashenkov said.
Media representatives who visited the base as well haven't found any chemical weapons there, Maj. Gen. Konashenkov added.
"The airfield was visited by dozens of mass media representatives, by the local administration, firefighters, police, not to mention Syrian servicemen.
Neither depots, nor ammunition containing chemical weapons have been found at the Sha'irat [airbase]. People at the airfield don't wear gas masks and feel absolutely well."

Libya: Thinni says “military solution” is only answer to Libya crisis
By Hadi Fornaji, Libya Herald, 8-4-2017

The prime minister of the Beida-based interim government recognised by the (democratic elected, anti-Islamist) House of Representatives (HoR), Abdullah Al-Thinni, has rejected the repeated view of international leaders as well as the Presidency Council that there can be no military solution to the Libya crisis, only a political one.
He has insisted that the divisions in the country will be resolved only by military action.
Speaking on Hadath TV on Thursday evening, he called on the country to unite behind Field Marshal Khalifa Hafter and the Libyan National Army, adding that they provided Libya with the only chance of survival against the various militias, the Muslim Brotherhood and those who served foreign interests.
“I belong to the military establishment and I am proud of it,” he stated, referring to his army career prior to the Libyan revolution.
He added that an emergency committee chaired by himself had been set up to deal with the various problems facing the armed forces and he would be having regular meetings with Hafter on the subject.
Thinni also claimed that in partnership with Major-General Abdul Razzaq Al-Nazhuri, the east’s military governor from Derna to Ben Jawad, he would be organising reforms and improvements to municipalities within the area. In Benghazi, he said, there would be a programme of reconstruction, supervised by the eastern Central Bank of Libya (CBL) governor Ali Habri.
Thanking House of Representatives President Ageela Saleh for his cooperation with his government, Thinni again stressed that the parliament was the sole legislative body in Libya.

The link between Khalifa Haftar – the head of the HoR-aligned armed forces – and the Speaker of the Tobruk parliament, Aguila Saleh Issa, is very strong.
Haftar rules from his headquarters in Marj (in eastern Libya) and has strong military control over both the al-Bayda government and the HoR in Tobruk. Also because of Haftar’s popular support in eastern Libya, very little happens in the HoR without his approval.
In 2016, Haftar’s forces made significant advances in Benghazi both against the Islamist-dominated Benghazi Revolutionary Shura Council and the Islamic State group (ISIS), with his opponents now limited to pockets of territory in the city.
The Tobruk centre of power has also established its own Central Bank and its own NOC which are not recognised on international markets and which were supposed to merge with their Tripoli counteparts. The merger has, so far, not happened.

No other Arab country plays as powerful a role in Libya as Egypt. Testament to Egypt’s involvement in the region is the regular travel Libyan leaders make to Cairo.
The relationship between Tobruk and Egypt is not just defined by significant arms deliveries but also by a shared political project: eradicating political Islam (Muslim Brotherhood) and enhancing the autonomy of eastern Libya.
For Egypt, according to some authors, having Cyrenaica – the eastern region of Libya – under the role of a leader that is friendly to Egypt (Haftar for instance) would create a buffer zone with ISIS and a territorial hinterland for any opposition to the regime in Cairo.

Muslim Brotherhood support

Neither Turkey nor Qatar have the same level influence that Egypt and the UAE have on the Tobruk side.
Turkish companies have, according to the UN panel of experts, delivered weapons to one side (the Islamist, Muslim Brotherhood dominated Libya Dawn coalition) and Qatar has maintained links with one Libyan politician and former jihadist – Abdelhakim Belhadj – since 2011. Yet none of the major Libyan actors respond to input from Ankara or Doha the way that Tobruk aligns itself with Cairo’s policies. (source:

Tripoli is controlled by the Libya Dawn and is allied with powerful armed forces based in the city of Misrata. The faction has reinstated the old parliament, known as the General National Congress in the capital. The General National Congress [GNC] is a former elected assembly that was reinstalled by Libya Dawn.
The General National Congress was the parliament that refused to disband to make way for the democratic elected House of Representatives.

Syrian woman: Dominating theme of exhibition in Lattakia
Syrian Arab News Agency, 8 April 2017

Lattakia, SANA – Syrian women and their important role throughout history were the focal point of Artist Nabil al-Samman’s exhibition held at Haishoon Art Café in Lattakia.
The Café’s walls were covered with 37 paintings of different sizes for Goddess Ishtar, the mother of the martyr, his beloved and his wife...
The artist told SANA that the US aggression on Iraq in 2003 was a turning point as it shows that there are parties which seek to erase the identity of the region and globalize horror to turn us into numbers of no identity.
He noted that the exhibition highlights the Syrian’s determination to achieve victory despite the pain and sorrow, adding that he used the expressionist style in which he deployed wide variety of strong colors to convey his thoughts and emotions.

The Semitic Race and its Lunar Deities: Ishtar, Shamash & Sin
The Origin of Sin and the Queen of Heaven

Ishtar was the daughter of the Moon-God Nannar (Sin).
In time Ishtar overshadowed all other female deities, as did her counterpart Isis in Egypt.
In early Babylonia the moon-cult was the national religion: the name Chaldeans means 'moon-worshippers'. In the bible Ur is referred to as Ur of the Chaldees.

Temple of the Moon God Hazor Palestine

The Moon, the Luminary of Heaven sendst, To Hrhb, the Summer's King; Give Nikkal; the Moon will pay the brideprice. Let the Fruitful One enter his house, And I will give her brideprice to her father... (Gray)

In the Babylonian cosmology Sin (Moon), Shamash (Sun-Jupiter) and Ishtar (Venus) formed the second trinity of deities. The first trinity of gods were also absorbed into the lunar cycle becoming phases of the moon, thus giving the moon a supreme role as the connecting principle between the deities and mankind.
Sin (Nannar) as father of both the Sun (Utu or Shamash) and of Inanna (Ishtar) was the central astral deity.

The moon was from earliest times the foundation of all theological development among the whole Semitic race, even after the Semites had become agriculturists.

Moses Maimonides expressed this by saying that moon-worship was the religion of Adam; and the crescent is still the badge of Islam, as it was once the emblem of Israel. Arab women even now insist that the moon is the parent of mankind.
Herodotus said "Arabs have no other divinities than Dionysius and Urania" (Ishtar or Aphrodite), both lunar deities". (Briffault v3 78) The cult of the moon-god Sinn is found in every Semitic land
Numerous ancient Arabian inscriptions show the moon-deity as the most prominent object of cult everywhere, whether in the Hadramaut, Kataban or Afinaean kingdoms. (Briffault v3 79)

Tillerson: "I think we have to learn the lessons of the past"
RT (Russia), 9 Apr, 2017

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said the Syrian crisis can only be solved through a political process, claiming it's not regime change but the defeat of the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) terrorist group that Washington is seeking in Syria.
"Our strategy in Syria, our priority is first to defeat ISIS," the US official said in an interview with ABC's "This Week" host, George Stephanopoulos, which was aired Sunday.
Saying that once the battle with the terrorist group is concluded, which according to the US official is "going quite well," Washington plans to turn its attention "to achieving ceasefire agreements between the regime and opposition forces."
Bringing the parties to the table for political discussions "clearly requires the participation of the regime and the support of their allies," Tillerson said in another Sunday interview to the American media, speaking to John Dickerson on CBS's "Face the Nation."
"It is through that political process that we believe the Syrian people will ultimately be able to decide the fate of Bashar Assad," he told ABC.

B.H. Levy: "Gaddafi was an enemy of israel"
John McCain 2012: "Assad remains a committed enemy of Israel"
"It’s Time to Use American Airpower in Syria"

Tillerson told CBS that Washington has learned its lesson of "what it looks like when you undertake a violent regime change," referring to Libya.
"Obviously the United States' own founding principle is self-determination, and what the US and our allies want to do is to enable the Syrian people to make that determination...
We've seen what violent regime change looks like in Libya and the kind of chaos that can be unleashed and indeed the kind of misery that it enacts on its own people," he said on CBS.
"I think we have to learn the lessons of the past," he emphasized on ABC, adding, "Any time you go on and have a violent change at the top, it is very difficult to create the conditions for stability [in the] longer term."

Al-Sadr: Russia, America and al-Assad should all get out of Syria!
By Juan Cole | Apr. 9, 2017

Iraqi Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr on Saturday issued a broadside demanding that Russia and the United States withdraw from Syria and that [president] Bashar al-Assad resign as president.
Al-Sadr’s stand against al-Assad is unusual among Shiite movements. The Lebanese Shiite militia, Hizbullah, has entered Syria to battle for al-Assad’s survival. Iran is also strongly backing him. Other Iraqi Shiite militias, such as the League of the Righteous, have sent units to support the al-Assad regime, for instance in the battle for Aleppo.
Al-Sadr called on all parties to withdraw militarily from Syria and for the Syrian people to take charge, since it is the only legitimate actor that can determine its own destiny. Otherwise, only terrorism and occupation will benefit. He specifically said Russia should also leave.
Al-Sadr went on to say “I find it fair that President Bashar al-Assad should tender his resignation and step down from power out of love for beloved Syria, so as to spare it the horrors of war and its domination by terrorists
He should give the reins of power to some popular and effective individuals who can stand against terrorism, so as to save Syrian territory as quickly as possible, so that his action can be lauded as historic and heroic, before it is too late…”

Al-Sadr: Once a supporter of Western Divide & Rule Ideology

Muqtada Al-Sadr was part of the Iraqi right-wing (anti-secular) establishment that supported the 'debaathification'-proces in Iraq.
The 2003 war on Iraq was not directed against 'an evil tirant' (Saddam), but against the secular, socialist Baath-party (i.e. Arab Nationalism).
Right-wingers in Iraq never opposed an elimination-strategy, that was based on the will to completely destroy 'the enemies', no matter who and what they are...
One of the reasons Sunni's in Iraq accepted ISIS-rule was the inability of the right-wing government to unite the Iraqi people.
Assad (like Saddam and Gaddafi) is more than 'just an evil person'. He is the representant of Secularism, Baathism, Socialism and Arab Nationalism.
Saddam was the enemy of Sadr’s Shiite fundamentalist movement and fundamentalists of the Wahhibist trend in Sunni Islam.

Flasback 2011: Witchhunt in Iraq
by Joel Wing, AK News 22/11/2011

Iraq has seen a wave of arrests and firings of alleged former Baathists.This started in October 2011 when the Ministry of Higher Education went after members of Tikrit University in Salahaddin. That was quickly followed by a wave of detentions across six of Iraq’s eighteen provinces...
The Baathist clamp down began with the Ministry of Higher Education. Back in July, Higher Education Minister Ali al-Adeeb said that the universities needed to be deBaathified.
By early November, the government announced that 655 former Baathists had been picked up. The 2008 Accountability and Justice Law however, only bans the top three levels of Baathists from holding government jobs. It does not say that they can be detained. ... Iraqi law does not allow the arrest of individuals for simply being a former regime member.
This has been the history of deBaathification since its inception in 2003. Iraqi officials have continuously used it to get rid of their opponents

Together they stand - divided they fail

Divide and rule (or divide and conquer, from Latin 'dīvide et īmpera') refers to a strategy that breaks up existing power structures, and especially prevents smaller power groups from linking up, causing rivalries and fomenting discord among the people.

Traiano Boccalini cites "divide et impera" as a common principle in politics. The use of this technique is meant to empower the sovereign to control subjects, populations, or factions of different interests, who collectively might be able to oppose his rule.
Machiavelli identifies a similar application to military strategy, advising in Book VI of The Art of War that a Captain should endeavor with every art to divide the forces of the enemy, either by making him suspicious of his men in whom he trusted, or by giving him cause that he has to separate his forces, and, because of this, become weaker.
Historically, this strategy was used in many different ways by empires seeking to expand their territories.

Elements of this technique involve:
-- 1. Creating or encouraging divisions among the subjects to prevent alliances that could challenge the sovereign;
-- 2. Aiding and promoting those who are willing to cooperate with the sovereign fostering distrust and enmity between local rulers;
-- 3. Encouraging meaningless expenditures that reduce the capability for political and military spending. (Wikipedia info)

Flashback: Paul Bremer & the “debaathification commission”
By Juan Cole, Dec. 10, 2013

In Iraq the Bush administration installed vindictive Shiites like Ahmad Chalabi in a “debaathification commission” (the Baath Party ruled 1968-2003).
Some 70,000 Sunni Arabs were fired from government jobs for having been party members, even though many members had joined on a pro forma basis. They were replaced with Shiites.
Since Bush’s Iraq was an attempted capitalist revolution in a socialist country, the administration simply closed down all the state factories, maintaining that they were worthless.
The Sunni Arab regions of the center-north and west were swept by massive unemployment. Young men and former Baath army personnel turned to insurgency, were repressed and tortured, creating more insurgency, and the guerrilla war continues to this day...
Baath officials have been executed in large numbers, and many others have been killed by sniping and reprisal murders...
The Iraqi constitution was drafted by an elected parliament, but one with only 17 Sunni Arabs in it because the Sunnis boycotted the elections after Bush invaded Falluja. It was a constitution for Shiites, Kurds and the Americans....

McMaster: "Everyone in the world sees Russia as part of the problem"
Capitol Hill Blue, April 10, 2017

President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, Herbert McMaster, is calling on Russia to re-evaluate its support for Syrian President Bashar Assad, leaving open the possibility of additional U.S. military action against Syria.
In his first televised interview, McMaster pointed to dual U.S. goals of defeating the Islamic State group and removing Assad from power. McMaster said Russia will have to decide whether it wanted to continue backing a “murderous regime.”
“It’s very difficult to understand how a political solution could result from the continuation of the Assad regime,” McMaster said on “Fox News Sunday.”
“Now, we are not saying that we are the ones who are going to effect that change. What we are saying is, other countries have to ask themselves some hard questions. Russia should ask themselves … Why are we supporting this murderous regime that is committing mass murder of its own population?”
He said Russia should also be asked how it didn’t know that Syria was planning a chemical attack since it had advisers at the Syrian airfield.
“Right now, I think everyone in the world sees Russia as part of the problem,” McMaster said.

In interviews broadcast Sunday, Rex Tillerson said: “We do not have any information that suggests that Russia was part of the military attack undertaken using the chemical weapons.” Tillerson said defeating the Islamic State group remains the top focus.

Flashback: The War Hawks Rolled Donald Trump
Moon of Alabama, 22-2-2017

Herbert McMaster was peddled to the White House by Senator Tom Cotton, one of the most outlandish (anti-Iranian) Republican neocon war hawks.
Trump has now been boxed in by hawkish, anti-Russian military in his cabinet and by a hawkish Vice-President. The only ally he still may have in the White House is his consigliere Steve Bannon.
The next onslaught of the "serious people" around Trump is against Bennon and especially against his role in the NSC. It will only recede when he is fired.

In a 2016 speech to the Virginia Military Institute, McMaster stressed the need for the US to have "strategic vision" in its fight against "hostile revisionist powers" — such as Russia, China, North Korea, and Iran — that "annex territory, intimidate our allies, develop nuclear weapons, and use proxies under the cover of modernized conventional militaries."

Colin Powell &
The Search For Chemical Weapons

"The facts on Iraqis' behavior - Iraq's behavior demonstrate that Saddam Hussein and his regime have made no effort - no effort - to disarm as required by the international community.
Indeed, the facts and Iraq's behavior show that Saddam Hussein and his regime are concealing their efforts to produce more weapons of mass destruction."
Colin Powell's address to the United Nations security council, 5-2-2003

"A failure will always be attached to me and my U.N. presentation," Powell writes in "It Worked For Me," a book that provides leadership advice.
"I am mad mostly at myself for not having smelled the problem.
My instincts failed me." Colin Powell, 25-5-2012

Pentagon Suspects Chemical Weapons Still at Syrian Air Base
by Naharnet Newsdesk, 10-4-2017

The Pentagon believes the Syrian regime likely has additional chemical weapons stocks at the airfield struck by U.S. missiles last week, but these were deliberately left untouched, an official said Monday.
U.S. intelligence experts assess Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's military is probably hoarding the weapons in munitions depots at Shayrat airfield near Homs in central Syria, the U.S. military's Central Command spokesman Colonel John Thomas said.
President Donald Trump ordered a massive military strike on the air base last week, in retaliation for a "barbaric" chemical attack he blamed on Assad.
"We suspected there was a significant probability there could be other chemical weapons which would be ready to go, weaponized in those facilities, and so we didn't strike those," Thomas told reporters.
The chemical stocks were left untouched because the Pentagon did not want to risk unintentionally sending a plume of toxic gas across parts of Syria.

The Pentagon has said it is sure Assad unleashed a chemical attack on April 4 that killed at least 87 civilians in the rebel-held Syrian town of Khan Sheikhun.
"Our advice was to make sure we didn't inflict any greater damage by touching any of the chemical weapons in the area," Thomas added. "We were trying to degrade their capability to launch aircraft and to load them up with chemical weapons."

Hans Blix: Washington’s ‘unilateralism’ in Syria undermines UN
RT (Russia) 11 Apr, 2017

Washington should have waited for the findings of an impartial probe and international authorization before unilaterally striking Syria on the pretext of chemical weapons use, according to Hans Blix who led the UN commission searching for Iraqi WMDs in 2003.
The former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency gained the world media's attention after his team of experts from the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission failed to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
Possible possession of chemical weapons was used as a pretext by the US in 2003 to invade Iraq. Over the years, that false pretense has cost the lives of up to one million Iraqis according to some estimates.

Blix stressed that Washington's airstrikes ran contrary to the common practice of international law which requires the approval of the UN before carrying out any form of aggression against another state.
“The UN Charter prohibits the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity of other states. And the US is not at war with Syria. So they should not attack them,” Blix said. “In the time when big power ignores the Security Council and ignores the Charter, they are also undermining the organization, and that is also regrettable,” he added.
Blix advised that in order to avoid further bloodshed in Syria, Moscow and Washington should focus on diplomacy, just like in 2013, when Russia convinced Syrian President Bashar Assad to surrender his chemical weapons stockpile to the UN.
In 2013 the Syrian government surrendered its entire chemical weapons arsenal, except for the stockpiles located in the inaccessible rebel-and terrorist-controlled areas, which was confirmed by the UN-affiliated Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

Flashback 2002: Hans Blix says attacks by hawks in Washington 'unhelpful'

The United Nations chief weapons inspector, Hans Blix, accused hawks in Washington, who are bent on going to war with Iraq, of conducting a smear campaign against him.
The extent of the tension between Mr Blix and elements of the US administration burst into the open on the day that he led UN weapons inspectors back to Baghdad for the first time in four years to renew their search for chemical, biological and nuclear-related weapons.
Key figures in the Bush administration have criticised Mr Blix in recent weeks, claiming he is too weak to stand up to the Iraqi president, Saddam Hussein, and that he may fail to find the weapons that the CIA claims have been hidden by the Iraqis.
In an interview with the Guardian in Cyprus, the last staging post before his flight to Baghdad, Mr Blix rounded on his critics. Asked whether he thought US hawks were behind the smear campaign, Mr Blix said: "You can say there's some truth in that judgment."
(The Guardian 19-11-2002)

Syrian University Students: "The U.S. is playing a dirty role"
Syria Times, 11 April 2017

Syrian university students in Damascus and Homs have protested against the aggression carried out Last Friday by United States on Syria. They asserted that the U.S. is playing a dirty role that aims to weaken Syria through terrorist tools and the reactionary forces serving the US-Zionist alliance.
According to the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA), the Syrian Students National Union (SSNU) organized Tuesday a protest outside the UN headquarters in Damascus where Head of the Unions’ Damascus University branch Khalid al-Masri read a statement condemning the US role in Syria.
“The US role in Syria is a cheap colonial attempt that aims to undermine Syrians’ will and to reinforce the Zionist entity to remain the only power in the region,” al-Masri said, asserting that Syria rejects all forms of the dirty imperial mandate that guards Zionism and its expansionist projects.
He called on the UN to condemn the practices that contradict international charters as Syria is a sovereign state and a UN member.
Two days ago (april 9), students of al-Baath University in Homs gathered at the square of the university carrying national flags and photos of President Bashar al-Assad...

Flashback 2003: A proxy war on behalf of Israel
by M. Shahid Alam, Counter Punch, 21-2-2003

This may not be America's war at all, much less a war of the West against Islam or Islamists.
Instead, could this be Israel's war against the Arabs fought through a proxy, the only proxy that can take on the Arabs? Is it even possible? Could the tail wag this great dog?
Consider first Israel's motives. Iraq, Iran, Syria do not threaten the United States; but they are a threat to Israel's hegemonic ambitions over the region.
This conflict between Israel and her neighbors was written into the Zionist script. A Jewish state could only be inserted into Palestine by resort to a massive ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.
After such inauspicious beginnings, Israel could only sustain itself by keeping its neighbors weak, divided, and disoriented. It has since waged wars against Egypt in 1956; against Egypt, Syria and Jordan in 1967; against Iraq in 1981; against Lebanon, since 1982; and against Palestinians continuously since 1948.

Israel's contradictions have deepened since the mounting of the second Intifada.
When the Palestinians rejected the Bantustans offered at Oslo, Israel chose Ariel Sharon, a war criminal, to ratchet its war against Palestinian civilians. Faced with Apaches, F-16s, tanks and artillery, in desperation, the Palestinians turned increasingly to suicide bombings. Sharon's brutal war was not working, and Israel's losses began to catch up with Palestinian casualties.
In April 2002, Israeli tanks reoccupied the Palestinian towns, destroyed Palestinian civilian infrastructure, increasingly placing Palestinians under curfews, sieges, destroying their workshops, stores, hospitals, orchards and farms...
But Israel cannot do this alone. [Israel needs] a major war against the Arabs, a war to Balkanize the region, a war to bring about regime-change in Iraq, Syria and Iran, a war that only United States can wage. Israel needs United States to wage a proxy war on behalf of Israel.

M. Shahid Alam, Professor of Economics at Northeastern University. His book, 'Poverty from the Wealth of Nations', was published by Palgrave in 2000.

US administration 'fully supports' Egypt's war on terrorism
Ahmed Eleiba , Tuesday 11 Apr 2017

A delegation from the US Congress visiting Cairo on Monday told Egyptian defence minister Sedki Sobhi that the US administration fully supports Egypt's war against terrorism and extremism.
The delegation members also offered their condolences over the church Sunday attacks that killed 46 people in Tanta and Alexandria.
The US delegation, headed by chairman of the US House Appropriations Subcommittee on State and Foreign Operations Hal Rogers, discussed with Sobhi common interests and regional developments.
The meeting was attended by Egypt's Chief of Staff Mahmoud Hegazi.
Sobhi asserted his appreciation for the ties between the two countries, expressing his hope for increased military cooperation.
The delegation said it acknowledges Egypt's important role in the region, adding that the US is keen on bolstering bilateral ties with Egypt in the upcoming period.

Muslim Brotherhood (supported in Syria by the USA, Turkey & Qatar):
Coup Regime Waging War on All Egyptians
Talaat Fahmi, Muslim Brotherhood Media Spokesman, 11-4-2017

Horrific extrajudicial killing of young people is being dramatically escalated by the criminal coup gang.
The Egyptian people are now shocked, almost daily, to see fellow citizens lying dead in the streets or in morgues across the homeland – all victims of deliberate cold blood murders.
The coup gang has trampled the law, as well as all human values, ​​after its conscience died and its humanity faded to nothing. Consumed by avarice and a desperate wish to hang on to power, the junta has waged a dirty daily war against the Egyptian people without exception, committing one deadly massacre after another, in many different ways, for many different reasons.
The coup gang kills Egyptian citizens in raids on innocent people's homes, in their dark dungeons of forced disappearance, with medical neglect and torture to death in prisons, and even inside churches. They even kill police officers who seem to have a different attitude.
If those citizens killed by the coup gang were really terrorists, it would have tried them in the full glare of public opinion, proved them guilty, and punished them.
But, instead, it is pushing Egypt towards the abyss, seeking to terrorize Egyptians to intimidate and stop them rejecting the military coup.
This military gang has become too tyrannical and despotic for its own good.
The tragic developments are in fact a serious criminal policy. It calls for international and human rights action to stop this mad military junta shedding the blood of Egyptians.

Egypt’s president Abdel- Fattah El-Sisi, during his visit to the White House, requested that political Islamic groups especially the Brotherhood be declared a terrorist group.
President Trump praised Sisi and referenced their first meeting, during the 2016 presidential campaign, describing him as “somebody that is been very close to me from the first time I met him.”

Sisi, in return, said to Trump “ I had a deep appreciation and admiration of your unique personality, especially as you are standing very strong in the counter-terrorism field.”
The objective, of the visit, the administration said, is to rebuild relations strained during the Obama years by Egypt’s crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood. (Africa News, 3-4-2017)

Turkey: Muslim Brothers' Protector
Burak Bekdil, Gatestone Institute, June 9, 2015

Let us tenderly and kindly cherish the means of knowledge.
Let us dare to read, think, speak, and write."
John Adams

What do Syria, Egypt and Libya have common? They are all at various degrees of cold war with Turkey, which they accuse of supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and similar Islamist terrorists in their countries.
Turkey has never denied support, but claims that the Muslim Brothers, like Hamas, are just democratic elements in politics.
During the short-lived rule of their president, Mohamed Morsi, the Muslim Brothers, in well-documented incidents, threatened, attacked, kidnapped, tortured, beheaded and killed dozens, if not hundreds, of Christians.
During the Muslim Brotherhood's systematic massacres against Egypt's Christians, no Turkish leader was heard criticizing a single incident targeting Christians. After Morsi's downfall, however, they have never ceased loudly condemning the man who toppled Morsi, General Abdel Fatah al-Sisi.
Most recently, Turkey's biggest Muslim Brotherhood fan, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, said, "For me, Morsi is Egypt's president, not Sisi." "Egypt is turning into ancient Egypt. Sisi cannot be confronted. The West does not display a stance against Sisi the coup-maker," he said.
In response to Ankara's playful logic, an unidentified Egyptian official in Cairo said Egypt was not surprised by Turkey's comments: "The current regime in Turkey is a reflection of the ideas of the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood..."

Gatestone Institute is a right-wing (neocon) international policy council and think tank. Chairman: John Bolton

Verdict First, Evidence Later:
James ONeill, Al-Manar, 12-4-2017

'Attacking Their Own People'
Islamic Front – Jaish al Islam and Suqoor al Sham
Promo Video of Khan Sheikhoun Battle, March 22, 2014

On April 7, 2016, the Sheikh Maqsood neighborhood in Aleppo was shelled with mortars containing chemical agents. On April 8, a spokesman for the rebel group (Jaish al Islam) admitted that “forbidden” weapons had been used against Kurdish militia and civilians in Aleppo. According to Red Crescent, the symptoms are consistent with the use of chlorine gas or other agents. (Wikipedia)

“Let the jury consider their verdict”, the King said...
“No, no,” said the Queen. Sentence first – verdict afterward.”

Charles Dodgson in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

The pictures of dead and dying civilians has once again caused the western media to renew their demands for the removal of Syrian President Bashar al Assad.
The rush to judgment overlooks a number of alternative explanations that are at least worth considering, especially when actual hard evidence is in such short supply. One such scenario is that the Syrian air force bombed a factory that was storing chemical weapons for use by one or more of the multiple terrorist groups operating in the area.
The fact that the terrorist groups have used such weapons in the past and had strong motives to use them again is entirely missing from the western media narrative.

In all the fury mounted against the Assad government for their alleged conduct, no one has raised a single plausible reason why the Syrian government would risk such international condemnation for so little military benefit.
Assad is not a fool and he would know that such an attack would provide ammunition for the very powerful neocon element in the US for who massive civilian casualties are a matter of indifference when committed by their side, but are ever willing to use tragedy whether at their own hand or by others, in pursuit of their geopolitical goals...
The reporting of the tragedy from Syria is but the latest illustration of an all too common phenomenon: a pre-determined verdict on little or no evidence...

"Verily, religion and motherland are two sides of the same coin. One cannot accept one and forget about the other.
To be a religious person means also to love one’s motherland." (Minister of religion of Algeria 2009)

Syria: Speaker meets chairman of the Women’s Union of Russia
Unifying efforts to defeat terrorism
Syrian Arab News Agency, 10-4-2017

Ekaterina Lakhova is confident that Sense of Motherland begins with family relationships in relation to mother, father, and grandparents. “It starts even in the way parents read fairy tales to their child..."
Speaker of the People’s Assembly Hadiyeh Abbas stressed on Monday the the importance of enhancing cooperation between Syrian and Russian women to overcome the dark thinking against women, expressing Syria’s appreciation to the Russian people for standing by the Syrian people in the fight against terrorism.

Abbas, who is visiting Moscow along with a delegation of the People Assembly, said in a joint press statement with chairman of the Women’s Union of Russia, Ekaterina Lakhova:
“We arrived in Moscow upon a kind invitation of Valentina Matviyenko, Chairman of the Federation Council of Russia, to develop the relations in various field, particularly in the parliamentary, popular and political fields.”
Abbas thanked the Russian people who stand by Syria in economic, political and military fields.

Abbas, along with accompanying delegation, held talks with the delegation of the Women’s Union of Russia.

Sathya Sai Baba & The "path to Divinity"

A Palestinian man holds a poster during a protest against the visit of President Barack Obama in the West Bank city of Jenin, March 20, 2013. Writing in Arabic reads, "There is nothing like the motherland"
1. Love and serve your Motherland. Do not be critical of others' countries.
Have a sense of pride in your motherland. Just as your mother has given birth to you, so too the land has given birth to you.
Whatever country you belong to, you should have a sense of patriotism.
Do not indulge in criticizing other countries or people belonging to other nations. Having trust and faith in your own country, you won't try to put down any other country.
Never bring grief or sorrow to your country. To have pride in your own motherland is important.

2. Honor and respect all religions as pathways to God.
Never have hatred toward any religion. Honor and respect all religions equally. Even as you are a citizen of your motherland but respect all countries, also respect all religions equally.

3. Love all humanity as part of your family; know that humanity is a single community.
Develop a sense of the brotherhood of humanity. Look upon each person as your own brother or sister.
There is only one caste, the caste of humanity.
All of us belong to the human race, so everyone is equal. Therefore, love each one equally.

What is Wrong With Trump’s Attack on Syria?
by David Krieger, CounterPunch, 13-4-2017

-- 1. Trump did not seek and obtain Congressional authorization for his act of war in attacking a Syrian Air Force base.
Thus, the attack was illegal under US law. It is not the president’s prerogative to initiate attacks against sovereign nations without Congressional authorization. By acting without such Congressional authorization, Trump has placed himself and the presidency above the rule of law.
-- 2. Trump did not seek and obtain authorization for his attack against Syria from the United Nations Security Council, as is required under international law.
By failing to do so the US has put itself outside the boundaries of the UN Charter, which is also a part of US law, as well as other international law to which the US is bound.
-- 3. Trump has undermined US relations with Russia, and has harmed the chances of the US and Russia working cooperatively in resolving the Syrian conflict.
-- 4. Trump has demonstrated to the world that in matters of war, as with tweeting, he is impulsive, shoots from the hip..
These characteristics are not generally accepted as being preferred qualities in a US president. Trump’s impulsivity in ordering the attack sets a dangerous standard for someone in charge of the US nuclear arsenal.

What astrology tells us:
Trump (Hot, Chaos) versus Kennedy (Cool, Dignity)

Kennedy's EGO is intellectual (Sun:Gemini-Moon:Virgo)
Balanced (Libra:Ascendant), Father|Motherly and visionair (Saturn, Moon, Neptune house 10)

Trump's EGO is truth-seeking intellectual (Sun:Gemini-Moon:Sagitarius)
Optimistisc-warm (Leo:Ascendant), Agressive, Defensive and Revengeful (Mars Pluto house 1)
and looking for earthly, materialistic solutions in life (Taurus - Eartly Mother- house 10)

"Our goal is not the victory of might,
but the vindication of right..."
John F. Kennedy (Cuba speech, 22-10-1962)

Putin, Erdogan discuss chemical weapons incident in Syria
TASS Russian News Agency, 13-4-2017

On Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan held a telephone conversation particularly discussing the situation in Syria, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.
"Yes, this issue was touched upon," he said when asked if the two leaders discussed the recent chemical weapons incident in Syria.
The two presidents stand for immediate, impartial investigation into the incident.
"The two leaders spoke in favor of an immediate, impartial and thorough investigation into the chemical weapons incident that occurred in the Syrian town of Khan Shaykhun on April 4," the statement reads.
"The parties discussed the situation in Syria and expressed willingness to continue cooperation aimed at strengthening the Syrian ceasefire and facilitating both the Astana and the Geneva intra-Syrian talks," the statement reads.

According to the Russian Defense Ministry, on April 4, the Syrian air force delivered an airstrike on several militant facilities in the Idlib Governorate, where munitions filled with poisonous substances were being made.
However, Washington came to a conclusion that Damascus had used chemical weapons which led the US to carry out a missile attack on a Syrian military air base located in the Homs Governorate.

President Bashar al-Assad gave an interview to AFP
All US presidents made a 180 degree U-turn
Syrian Arab News Agency 13-4-2017

-- Question: Mr. President, did you give an order to strike Khan Sheikhoun with chemical weapons last Tuesday?
-- President Assad: Actually, no-one has investigated what happened that day in Khan Sheikhoun till the moment. As you know, Khan Sheikhoun is under the control of al-Nusra Front, which is a branch of Al Qaeda, so the only information the world have had till this moment is published by Al Qaeda branch. No-one has any other information... This is first.
Second, Al Qaeda sources said that the attack happened at 6, 6:30 in the morning, while the Syrian attack in the same area was around noon, between 11:30 to 12. So, they’re talking about two different stories or events.

-- Question: You know, your government said in the beginning that you hit a chemical weapon depot. Is it true?
-- President Assad: It was a possibility... But this is conflicting again with the timing of the announcement...

-- Question: If you say that you didn’t give any order, it is possible that the chemical attack could have been carried out by a rogue or fringe element from the army?
-- President Assad: Even if you have a rogue element, the army doesn’t have chemical materials. This is first. Second, a rogue army cannot send an airplane at their will, even if they want. It’s an airplane, it’s not a small car to take it from place to place or a small machinegun to use it.
Third, the Syrian Army is a regular army, it’s not a militia. It’s a regular army, it has hierarchy, it has very clear way of orders, so this kind of “rough personnel tried to do something against the will of the leadership of the army” never happened during the last six years of the war in Syria.

-- Question: So what happened this day?
-- President Assad: As I said, the only source is Al Qaeda, we cannot take it seriously. But our impression is that the West, mainly the United States, is hand in glove with the terrorists. They fabricated the whole story in order to have a pretext for the attack, It wasn’t an attack because of what happened in khan Sheikhoun.

-- President Assad: The allegation itself was by Al Qaeda, al-Nusra Front, so we don’t have to investigate who, they announced it, it’s under their control, no-one else.
About the attack, as I said, it’s not clear whether it happened or not, because how can you verify a video? You have a lot of fake videos now.. We don’t know whether those dead children were killed in Khan Sheikhoun? Were they dead at all? Who committed the attack if there was an attack? What’s the material? You have no information at all, nothing at all, no-one investigated.

-- Question 4: So you think it’s a fabrication?
-- President Assad: Definitely, for us, it’s fabrication...

-- Question: Can we say that the US strike changed your opinion on Trump?
-- President Assad: I always say let’s see what he’s going to do... The President is only one of the performers on their theatre...
Trump wanted to be a leader, but every President there, if he wants to be a real leader, later he’s going to eat his words, swallow his pride if he has pride at all, and make a 180 degree U-turn, otherwise he would pay the price politically.

-- Question: The US and Russia are the co-sponsors of Geneva process. Because of the tension between the two countries, do you think that this process can continue?
-- President Assad: Look, there’s a big difference between the process being active, which could happen anytime, to reactivate the process and to be effective. Till this moment, its’ not effective. Why? Because the United States is not serious in achieving any political solution.

-- Question: After six years, Mr. President, aren’t you tired?
-- President Assad: No, I don’t feel tired at all, because we are defending our country, and we’re not going to get tired at all in that regard.
The humanitarian interaction between me and every Syrian family directly or indirectly, this is the only thing that could deprive me from sleep from time to time, but not the Western statements and not the threat of the support of the terrorists.

Only Rational Thinking Can Save The World
by Andre Vltchek, Dissident Voice, April 14th, 2017

The West has brought the world to the brink of total collapse, but its citizens, even its intellectuals, are stubbornly refusing to grasp the urgency. Like ostriches, many are hiding their heads in the sand.
There seems to be an acute lack of rational thinking, and especially of people’s ability to grasp the proportions of global occurrences and events.
For years I have been arguing that destroying the ability to compare and to see things from the universal perspective has been one of the most successful endeavors of the Western indoctrination drive (dispersed through education, media/disinformation and ‘culture’).

It is not only history that is seen in the West through totally crooked and ‘out of focus’ lenses. It is also the present, which has been perceived and ‘analyzed’ in an out of context way and without applying hardly any rational comparisons.
Tens of millions of people are now on the move, their countries thoroughly ruined by Western geopolitical games.
Instead of influencing and helping to guide humanity, such great cultures as those of Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria are now forced to disgorge millions of desperate refugees. They are barely surviving, humiliated and hardly relevant.
Extremist religious groups (of all faiths, and definitely not only belonging to the Muslim religion) are being groomed by the Western Machiavellian ideologues and strategists, then dispersed to all corners of the globe...

Most of the world is actually trying to function ‘normally’
We want to fly, we want freedom and optimism and beauty to govern our lives. We want to dream and to create something deep, meaningful, happy and kind. But there are those horrible weights hanging from our feet. There are chains restraining our actions.
There is constant fear, which is making us betray all our ideals, as well as each other, again and again...; fear that makes us, humans, act like shameless cowards and egoists. As a result we are not flying, we are only crawling, and not even forward, but in bizarre, irrational ellipses and circles...

In the West, everyone and everything is now fragmented and life itself became objectively meaningless
There is distinct time to work (satisfying one’s personal career, guaranteeing survival, advancing ‘prestige’ and ego), there is time to play, and for family life… and there is occasionally time to think about humanity or, very rarely, about the survival of our planet. Needless to say, this selfish approach has failed in helping to advance the world.
Survival and then the advancement of the world should be our greatest goal... Now it is time to think, rationally and quickly, and then to act..

Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries.

John F. Kennedy: Address Before the American Newspaper Publishers Association
New York City, April 27, 1961

[It is] our obligation to inform and alert the American people--to make certain that they possess all the facts that they need, and understand them as well--the perils, the prospects, the purposes of our program and the choices that we face.
No President should fear public scrutiny of his program. For from that scrutiny comes understanding; and from that understanding comes support or opposition. And both are necessary.
I am not asking your newspapers to support the Administration, but I am asking your help in the tremendous task of informing and alerting the American people. For I have complete confidence in the response and dedication of our citizens whenever they are fully informed.

I not only could not stifle controversy among your readers -- I welcome it. This Administration intends to be candid about its errors; for, as a wise man once said: "An error doesn't become a mistake until you refuse to correct it."
We intend to accept full responsibility for our errors; and we expect you to point them out when we miss them.
Without debate, without criticism, no Administration and no country can succeed-and no republic can survive. That is why the Athenian law-maker Solon decreed it a crime for any citizen to shrink from controversy.
And that is why our press was protected by the First Amendment -- the only business in America specifically protected by the Constitution -- not primarily to amuse and entertain, not to emphasize the trivial and the sentimental, not to simply "give the public what it wants" -- but to inform, to arouse, to reflect, to state our dangers and our opportunities, to indicate our crises and our choices, to lead, mold, educate and sometimes even anger public opinion.

This means greater coverage and analysis of international news -- for it is no longer far away and foreign but close at hand and local. It means greater attention to improved understanding of the news as well as improved transmission.
And it means, finally, that government at all levels, must meet its obligation to provide you with the fullest possible information outside the narrowest limits of national security -- and we intend to do it....

China: ‘World Must Fix Historical Injustice against Palestine’
Palestine Chronicle, 14-4-2017

On Thursday China’s Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, said Palestinians must be able to build an independent state to correct a “historical injustice.”
In a press conference in Beijing with Palestine’s Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki, Wang reiterated China’s longstanding support for an end to Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestine and the creation of an independent Palestinian state.
Wang noted that 70 years after the U.N. General Assembly passed Resolution 181 calling for the creation of an independent Palestine alongside Israel, Palestinians are still being denied their independence.
“This is unfair. This kind of historical injustice must be corrected. It cannot continue,” Wang said.
In Arab League talks earlier this year, Chinese President Xi Jinping urged that East Jerusalem should be established as the capital of the Palestinian state and warned against the “marginalization” of the Palestinian struggle for statehood.
“Maintaining the legitimate interests of the Palestinian people is the responsibility of the Arab League as well as the international community.”

Wang’s statement came as a group of Palestinian political prisoners in Israel’s Nafha prison announced they would join the upcoming mass hunger strike, led by imprisoned Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti, scheduled for April 17, Palestinian Prisoner’s Day.
“We shall gain our dignity and rights by facing the arrogance of the occupier with our empty stomachs, armed by the justness of our cause and popular support.”

John F. Kennedy was the first president to make a major arms sale to Israel, the only president to push hard to deny Israel the atomic bomb, and the last president to reach out to the greatest champion of Arab nationalism, Egyptian President Jamal Abdul Nasser.

Content with the victories of the spirit
John F. Kennedy, Speech
Zionists of America Convention, NY, 26-8-1960

The Arab peoples rose to freedom and independence in the very years which saw the rise of Israel.
From the cooperation of these two awakened nationalisms could come a new golden age for the Middle East.
But from their destructive vendetta can come nothing but misery and poverty and the risk of war.

The Middle East needs water, not war; tractors, not tanks; bread, not bombs.
There is already little enough available in the way of financial and physical resources for either side to be devoting its energies to huge defense budgets. The present state of tensions serves only the worst interests of Arab and Israeli alike. But a new spirit of comity could well serve the highest ideals of both.
For the original Zionist philosophy has always maintained that the people of Israel would use their national genius not for selfish purposes but for the enrichment and glory of the entire Middle East.
The earliest leaders of the Zionist movement spoke of a Jewish state which would have no military power and which would be content with victories of the spirit...

I cannot believe that Israel has any real desire to remain indefinitely a garrison state surrounded by fear and hate.

Trump's Morphed From Spy Agency Critic to Fan, CIA's Pompeo Says
by Nafeesa Syeed, Bloomberg, 14-4-2017

Not long ago Donald Trump was describing U.S. “intelligence” agencies in mocking quote marks and comparing them to Nazi Germany for damaging leaks about him. As a presidential candidate, word was he barely wanted to sit still for top-secret briefings.
Not anymore, according to Trump’s CIA director.

"Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?" Matthew 7:1-5
Mike Pompeo paints a picture of his boss as an enthusiastic consumer of intelligence briefings, including top-secret assessments of threats posed by Syria, Russia and North Korea.
In his first public speech since becoming head of the Central Intelligence Agency, the former Republican House member called the Trump administration’s relationship with the intelligence community “fantastic.” Almost every day, Pompeo or his deputy provides Trump with an intelligence briefing, the CIA chief said. Vice President Mike Pence is usually there too.

Trump initially rejected the intelligence agencies’ findings that Russia hacked into Democratic emails and leaked them last year to harm Democrat Hillary Clinton’s campaign and help him win.
He continues to dismiss as “fake news” questions about whether anyone close to him collaborated with Russia, and he continues to assert without evidence that former President Barack Obama had Trump Tower under surveillance and leaked damaging information.
But Trump’s decision last week to bomb a government airbase in Syria may have brought Trump closer to the intelligence community that now reports to him.
The CIA and the other U.S. intelligence agencies came up with some “hypotheses” about who was responsible for a deadly chemical attack on civilians and, “in relatively short order,” gave Trump “a high-confidence assessment” that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was to blame, Pompeo said.

Pompeo is among the many top Trump administration officials who vehemently reject the president’s past pronouncements that Russian President Vladimir Putin is an admirably strong leader with whom the U.S. can make deals.
This is a man for whom veracity doesn’t translate into English,” Pompeo said of Putin. Russia is “on their six or seventh story now” about what they allege happened in the Syrian chemical attack, “none of which have an ounce of truth to them,” he said.