Monday, September 15, 2014

Names of Palestinians killed by Israel

"The following 1606 names have been confirmed - the actual death toll, according to the Ministry of Health, is at least at 2137. The number includes 578 children, 264 women, and 103 elderly, while more than 11100, including 3374 children, 2088 women and 410 elderly, have been injured."

Hisbollah and the Syrian Opposition....the telegraph today

From Michael: "Hezbollah-backed Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said an explosion had destroyed a bridge in Deir al-Zor city that is of vital importance to Isil as the only way for it to move into parts of the city it controls. "  They changed it, I am sure.

What Obama is not telling the American people

Is that Al-Qa`idah in Syria (Nusrah front) is part of his international coalition against ISIS.

'Moderate' Syrian Revolutionaries Front continues to support al Qaeda

"The only problem with this example of a possible US ally in the fight in Syria is that Maarouf has already stated that he has no problem with al Qaeda's Syrian branch, the Al Nusrah Front, and has admitted to sharing weapons with it. And this example of cooperation between "moderate" and radical Islamist groups is not an isolated one;" (thanks Amir)

This cartoon is making the round in Arab social media

The Huthis and their anti-Jewishness

I have not been able to understand the anti-Jewish component of the Huthi ideology.  It comes out of nowhere.  What the movement did to the Jews of Sa`dah (who never bothered the Huthis) was quite cruel and totally unjustified.  I just read the book by Ahmad Muhammad Ad-Daghshi on the Huthis (الحوثيّون: دراسة منهجيّة شاملة) and I still don't get it.  Husayn Huthi blames all problems on Jews, reminiscent of European anti-Semitism.  In fact, the ideology of the movement complain about the Sunni educational systems because Jews are not treated like pagans.  

Quiz: try to locate the foreign minister of Lebanon in this picture.

Which Islam?

My latest blog post for Al-Akhbar English: "Which Islam?"

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Syrian rebel leader: a moderate

The "moderate" Syrian leader of the Free Syrian Army (or one of them anyway), Riyadh Al-As`ad (who was once hailed as the very hope of Syria and the man who made the days of Bashshar numbered) said yesterday that he won't join in the American war on ISIS.  Let me translate his principled stance: where is my cash, damn it.

Israel has done the following since the ceasefire

"On 26 August a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas was agreed, bringing a fragile end to a war that killed 2150 Palestinians (mostly civilians) and 73 Israelis (mostly soldiers). Since then Hamas has not fired a single rocket, attacked an Israeli target, or done anything to break the terms of the ceasefire. Israel has done the following:

1. Annexed another 1500 acres of West Bank land
 2. Seized $56 million of PA tax revenue
 3. Not lifted the illegal blockade (as required by the ceasefire)
 4. Broken the ceasefire by firing at fishermen on four separate occasions
 5. Detained six fishermen
 6. Killed a 22-year-old, Issa al Qatari, a week before his wedding
 7. Killed 16-year-old Mohammed Sinokrot with a rubber bullet to the head
 8. Tortured a prisoner to the point of hospitalisation
 9. Refused 13 members of the European Parliament entry into Gaza
 10. Detained at least 127 people across the West Bank, including a seven-year-old boy in Hebron and two children, aged seven and eight, taken from the courtyard of their house in Silwad – and tear-gassed their mother
 11. Continued to hold 33 members of the Palestinian Legislative Council in prison
 12. Continued to hold 500 prisoners in administrative detention without charge or trial
 13. Destroyed Bedouin homes in Khan al Ahmar, near Jerusalem, leaving 14 people homeless, and unveiled a plan to forcibly move thousands of Bedouin away from Jerusalem into two purpose-built townships
 14. Destroyed a dairy factory in Hebron whose profits supported an orphanage
 15. Destroyed a family home in Silwan, making five children homeless
 16. Destroyed a house in Jerusalem where aid supplies en route to Gaza were being stored
 17. Destroyed a well near Hebron
 18. Set fire to an olive grove near Hebron
 19. Raided a health centre and a nursery school in Nablus, causing extensive damage
 20. Destroyed a swathe of farmland in Rafah by driving tanks over it
 21. Ordered the dismantling of a small monument in Jerusalem to Mohamed Abu Khdeir, murdered in July by an Israeli lynch mob
 22. Continued building a vast tunnel network under Jerusalem
 23. Stormed the al Aqsa mosque compound with a group of far right settlers
 24. Assisted hundreds of settlers in storming Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus
 25. Prevented students from entering al Quds University, firing stun grenades and rubber bullets at those who tried to go in
 26. Earned unknown millions on reconstruction materials for Gaza, where 100,000 people need their destroyed homes rebuilt. The total bill is estimated at $7.8 billion"

EU and refugees

"There is virtually no legal path to Europe for refugees -- not for most Syrians, of which only very few are brought to Germany as so-called contingent refugees, not for Iraqis and not for people from troubled West African countries." "A consortium of European journalists found that more than 23,000 people have lost their lives while attempting to reach Europe in the last 14 years." (thanks Amir)

schools in Gaza

""According to a rapid assessment report by the UN Office for the Coordination for Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), 26 schools were completely destroyed in Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip, while 122 schools were variously damaged, including 75 UNRWA schools.

The head of the Islamic University, Kamaleen Sha'th, estimates losses caused by damage to building facilities there at US$3 million. At least 11 higher education organizations were hit during the war.

“We were already in a crisis and these attacks will add to our burdens, especially after these hard and long years of the blockade,” said Sha’th."" (thanks Regan)

This just in: An American official maintains that Saudi Arabia has an extensive border with Syria--kid you NOT

"SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: I guess I would just add one thing on the coalition question -- and I think this is important to really focus on, which is to say, in discussions with governments in the region, notably the Saudis and the Jordanians, what is clear is that we have a very common view of this threat. And this is really quite unusual.
ISIL has been I think a galvanizing threat around the Sunni partners in the region. They view it as an existential threat to them. Saudi Arabia has an extensive border with Syria. " (thanks David)

Vegan Witches

ISIS has a severe PR problems among Muslims

ISIS is becoming aware that beheading is quite distasteful among Muslims (although Arab media can't reflect that because most are run by Saudi money).  SO ISIS put out a list of lame defenses of its beheadings.

The ideology of ISIS: what Western governmnet can't admit

In defending its practices and crimes, ISIS consistently resort to citing the authority of the founder of the Wahhabiyyah doctrine, Muhammad Ibn Al-Wahab.

vigilantism in Lebanon against the Syrian people

Human Rights Watch in Beirut is busy disseminating the propaganda of the Free Syrian Army so it has not noticed. But there are acts of vigilantism against the Syrian people in Lebanon with the full consent of the government sometimes. This head of municipality of Dikwanah east of Beirut admits that they are storming into the homes of Syrians whenever they wish.

Lousy Hamas movement

I have argued her for years that the future of Hamas can be read from the history of the Fath Movement (another lousy organization).  One Hamas leader says that the movement will negotiate directly with Israel.  Another leader says: that Hamas will never recognize Israel.  This was like the Fath Movement back in the 1970s.  We can predict the future now.

ISIS and lies about ISIS

Not in their defense but a lot of the stories about ISIS in the Arab and Western media are in fact fabricated.  ISIS put out a list of more than 100 lies about ISIS being circulated. But notice that when it comes to killing Shi`ites and `Alawites, ISIS is not defensive at all.  Many of the disinformation about ISIS are being spread by the intelligence service of a Kingdom that shares the same ideology with ISIS (Saudi Arabia, of course). 

UN Secretary-General pays tribute to Kuwaiti Amir for humanitarian leadership

This is the UN.  HE should have added that the UN is particularly proud of the recent policy by the Emir to strip any dissident or critic of the government of citizenship.

flogging a website launcher in Saudi Kingdom of Horrors

He is being flogged for founding a website that disturbed "public order."  Kid you not.  In other news, John Kerry announces that nothing can defeat the fanaticism of ISIS except the Saudi Wahhabi doctrine. 

An-Nahar's newspaper: the last refuge of a failed newspaper

It is now becoming widely noticed. The Lebanese right-wing sectarian Christian and racist newspaper, An-Nahar (who best days are decades behind it) is now resorting to sex and sleaze to attract readers. 

Another honorary doctorate

Saudi King receives yet another honorary doctorate from the Imam Muhammad Bin Saud University in the field of international relations but the university does not have that field to start with. Congratulations to him and his sponsors in Western democracy-loving countries.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

These are your moderate Syrian rebels

"As the United States begins to deepen ties with moderate Syrian rebels to combat the extremist group ISIS, also known as the Islamic State, a key component of its coalition appears to have struck a non-aggression pact with the group.

According to Agence France-Presse, ISIS and a number of moderate and hard-line rebel groups have agreed not to fight each other so that they can focus on taking down the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad. Other sources say the signatories include a major U.S. ally linked to the Free Syrian Army. Moreover, the leader of the Free Syrian Army said Saturday that the group would not take part in U.S. plans for destroying the Islamic State until it got assurances on toppling Assad." (thanks Shawn)

Why Abbas blocked ICC application

"Abbas and Netanyahu met again in secret in Amman days before the ceasefire was announced, although both sides have denied this. The sole subject of conversation was how to stop Hamas claiming victory."

Bombing Iraq

"At this point, bombing Iraq is practically a American presidential tradition." (thanks Amir)

Khamenei in the hospital

Regarding the hospital stay of Iranian supreme guides, many Arabs have noticed: 1) the simplicity and modesty of the room and the bed.  If this were a Saudi prince, the equipment and bed would be made of solid gold. 2) Sistani went to London for hospitalization while Khamenei went to a state hospital. 

The menace of beheadings: Why don't you speak out against beheadings in Saudi Arabia?

"The beheading of Pakistani national Izzat Gul for drug trafficking was Saudi Arabia's 46th such execution for 2014, according to Human Rights Watch (HRW). In August alone, Saudi Arabia decapitated 19 people, eight of them for nonviolent offenses, including sorcery, the rights group added." (thanks Michele)

Should the Israeli government be inclusive?

From Alfred: "I have been hearing American political leaders for years DEMANDING that the Iraqi government be "Truly Inclusive" and put Iraqi Sunni Arab leaders in power who represent the Sunni Arabs and not just any token Sunni Arab leaders. The Sunni Arab population in Iraq are between 15% and 18% of the total population. The Arab population in Israel are more than 20%. How come no American political leader "Demand" the Israeli government to be INCLUSIVE?"

Qaradawi is not on the American side

Qaradawi said that while he disagrees with ISIS on doctrine and methods, he is also opposed to the US war.

Paradox about Islam and the "true Islam"

When I hear people talking about "this is not the true Islam" they usually mean that Saudi Wahhabiyyah is the true Islam. But Saudi Wahhabiyyah is the same ideology of ISIS. Do you see why I am dazed and confused?

Jordan as a sovereign country

The Jordanian prime minister yelled five days ago: Jordan is not part of any alliance against ISIS.  Three days ago, John Kerry announced that Jordan is part of the American alliance against ISIS. But then again: what does the Jordanian prime minister or even king know about policies of Jordan when they are decided in Washington, DC?

Seven wonders of the world

One of the seven wonders of the world is to see a Zionist American politician with a long track record of hostility to Arabs and Muslims, like John Kerry, preaching about what the "true Islam" is.  This is like having the Saudi Mufti lecturing about the "true Judaism".

Friday, September 12, 2014

American think tanks and their roles in Washington, DC

My weekly article in Al-Akhbar:  "American thank tanks and their roles in Washington, DC"

Israeli terrorists cleared by Israeli terrorists

"Of 44 cases initially referred to army fact-finding teams for preliminary examination, seven have been closed, including one involving the death of eight members of a family when their home was struck on July 8, the first day of the Israeli air campaign, and others are pending."

and he will later express regret for being wrong, yet again

"Kenneth Pollack, a former C.I.A. analyst now at the Brookings Institution who rose to prominence in 2002 for advocating the toppling of Saddam Hussein and later expressing regret for that position, said in a July interview that he had deep reservations about sending the American military back to the volatile region for fear of “opening Pandora’s box.”

Now, some of Mr. Pollack’s concerns appear to have taken a back seat to his alarm over ISIS and the destabilizing impact of Syria’s civil war. In the most recent issue of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Pollack wrote, “the rationale for more decisive U.S. intervention is gaining ground.”"

Maliki is not inlcusive

You read all those stories in the US press about how the US reached the conclusion with Saudi regime that Maliki is not "inclusive". What does that mean? As opposed to the inclusive allies of the US in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia?

ISIS as an American creation

This is a silly and ill-informed article. The notion (untrue of course) that the US created ISIS and the promotion of fake evidence is NOT an Iranian invention. In fact, all those theories and the fake picture of Sen. McCain with Baghdadi all originated in Arab social media and not in Iranian media. Iranian media merely copied them but the Times typically want to pick on Iran but not obviously on Arab countries loyal to US.

PS Now there is at least one element of the conspiracy theory that was not explained: how come Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi was release from US jail in Iraq, when youngsters were kept in Guantanamo for years?

Department of Homeland Security orders Muslims

"David Gersten, coordinator for countering terrorist extremism at the Department of Homeland Security, said Muslim American communities need to be the “front lines” against the blandishments of Islamist fighters trying to recruit youths to Islamic State’s cause, especially via social media."  Oh, really, Mr. Gersten.  Would you ever dare address a Jewish organization and call on the members to be "on the front lines" against Israeli Jewish fighters trying to recruit youths in the US to the Israeli state cause? Would even dare ban Americans from joining the Israeli terrorist army? It is not your fault though but the fault of those prostrating Muslims who invite speakers to insult them and insult their religion.  They deserve it.

US law requires ‘so help me God’ to be included in the military oath

"US air force sergeant barred from re-enlisting unless he swears to God"

An Arab strategic analyst on Sky News

I never knew that this is illegal in the land of the free and home of the brave

"was charged with desecration of a venerated object".

US Ambassador in Beirut really think that Lebanese people are dumb

 "U.S. Embassy Beirut (@usembassybeirut)

9/12/14, 8:02 AM
#AmbHale: The #US will also arm a Cessna the #US previously provided to @LebaneseArmy"
Cessna? Are you kidding us? Cessna which we use here in California to spray crops?  You can down a Cessna with a rock, damn it.  What is next for the US military aid program for the Lebanese Army? Equipping a mule with advanced weapons?

The coalition of Secular and enlightened Arab forces to defeat ISIS

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Saudi royal family and ISIS

""The Saudis themselves nourished the brand of puritanical Islam that would give birth to al Qaeda and its evil stepchild, the Islamic State. Denouncing its savagery seems beyond hypocritical on the part of the royals: In the past month alone, the kingdom’s executioners beheaded 19 people in "Chop-Chop Square," Riyadh's medieval justice forum, nearly half for nonviolent crimes.""