Thursday, March 31, 2011

David Kirkpatrick does not believe that US bombs can ever kill civilians

"Standing at the grave of an 18-month-old baby on Wednesday, officials of the Qaddafi government presented the first specific and credible case of a civilian death caused by Western airstrikes.  But relatives speaking a few yards away said they blamed Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi and welcomed the bombs.  “No, no, no, this is not from NATO,” one relative said, speaking quietly and on condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation. "  OK, Mr. Kirkpatrick.  What is your point? That US bombs don't have a history of killing many, many civilians, or that those civilian casualties of US bombing should always be dismissed because the US missions are always noble? Yes, Qadhdhafi regime lies but it is not difficult to expect, not imagine, the high toll of US bombings on civilians because we have seen those effects in Iraq and Afghanistan and other places, like Yemen and Somalia and elsewhere.   And then you want to reassure your readers that even if they were killed by US bombs, it does not matter because families of vicitims "welcome" the bombs, and that Arab mothers would be honored if they children are killed by US bombs.  Are you aware how ridiculous your piece and that opening paragraph in particular sound?

Musa Kusa defects

Let me guess: this terrorist mastermind will become a key leader in the already lousy, Saudi-supported Libyan transitional council, headed by that lousy Islamist/Qadhdhafi henchman, Mustafa `Abdul- Jalil.

Zionist justice

"A 14-year-old Jerusalem boy was banned from his neighborhood by a district court, his family said Wednesday. The child is prohibited from entering his home district for 60 days, after being convicted of stone throwing, relatives said."

That lousy Muslim Brotherhood

They held secret talks with `Umar Sulayman. (thanks Ahmet)

For Zionists to freak out some more

"Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil El-Araby said Tuesday that Iran has historically rooted relations with Egypt as a neighboring country, and should not be regarded as an enemy state, Palestinian Arabic-Language news daily Maan reported Tuesday.  El Araby, who entered into his role March 6 2011 added that Hezbollah is part of the political and social makeup of Lebanon, and that communication between Hezbollah and the Egyptian government is welcomed.  The Egyptian foreign minister also said coupled with increased dialogue with Hamas he is committed to improving the humanitarian needs in the Gaza Strip and Rafah crossing." (thanks FLC)

This may dramatically alter the Middle East strategic balance

"The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) provided the Lebanese Army Wednesday with 54 sets of computers and accessories."  By accessories they mean video games.

Emir Of Qatar

He appeared on Aljazeera and said that the reason why his country and others rallied to case of the Libyan rebels is because the Libyan people were under attack by Qadhdhafi.  Does that mean that Qatar will send its fighter jets to defend the people of Palestine, or even (closer) the people of Bahrain?

abuse of maids in Lebanon

"A parallel report, “Trafficking of Migrant Domestic Workers in Lebanon: A Legal Analysis” also released Wednesday, found that 65 percent of maids surveyed reported “experiencing a situation of forced labor, servitude or slavery.”  Forced labor includes deceiving the worker about the nature of the work, in addition to extracting services, such as cleaning the houses of others or administering medical treatment to elderly relatives, against one’s will."

One domestic worker dies every week in Lebanon

According to one study cited in As-Safir.

Repression in Bahrain

A source in Bahrain sent me this:  "Just in case you didn't know, they just killed a 15 year old Ahmad Saeed Shams from the village of Saar. According to Al Wefaq he was outside playing and ran when he saw security forces entering his village.  He died on his way to the hospital.  They also arrested Ayat AlQurmezi, a 19 year old who recited a poem at lulu and a CNN crew that was interviewing Bahraini human rights activist Nabeel Rajab."

For Arabs, the enemy is not only the Israeli state: it is the Israeli state AND society

"A new study examining Jewish and Arab Israeli teens' opinions on a wide range of issues shows nearly half of Jewish youths support revoking Arab-Israelis' basic rights.  The study focused on such issues as nationalism, democracy and attitudes towards State institutions.  The results: Israeli teens in 2010 believe less in democracy, are inclined towards rebelliousness and violence, are more racist and some have given up hope for peace. They are also more right-wing and patriotic." (thanks Yassine) 

It is really embarrassing when Robert Fisk tries to show his "Arabic"

"shout Um al Arabiya Wahida ("mother of one Arab nation").".  I mean, this is the slogan of the Ba`th and he got it wrong.  I said this before: I am willing to buy the wrist watch and give it to Fisk as a hint for the need for his retirement, already.  (thanks "Ibn Rushd")

Fath: like any other repressive Arab government

They attacked peaceful protesters.

Asad's speech (II): distasteful and repugnant

Here is my take on the speech: first, he is probably the best speaker among all Arab leaders, and has by far the best command of the Arabic language (although he does not use that old-fashioned style of flowery expressions).  As my mom says about him: he is the best educated among Arab leaders (many of whom are illiterate) and it shows.  Secondly, the expectations were high by virtue of the statements by Faruq Ash-Shar` and Buthayna Sha`ban: his own aides.  But personally, I don't think that you should have expected much.  The Asad's school of Ba`thist repression in Syria is that you never show weakness and that you deny facts that are contrary to your interests.  Bashshar did not want to believe that the Lebanese people wanted the Syrian army to leave Lebanon.  And when hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets, he believed otherwise and gave a speech from that same podium arguing that the crowds were nothing other than a camera trick.  The following massive pro-March 14 demonstration answered him back, loudly.  And Arab tyrants are stubborn: they simply dismiss facts and realities that run contrary to their interests.  But I also have argued that Bashshar is not running the show anymore: the narrow `Alawite minority military-intelligence elite felt threatened in its control as it did back in 1982 and it struck back and will strike back.  Bashshar can only follow, and yesterday he seemed to be convinced of the argument of repression and more repression.  The speech was a lousy failure by all measure: form and substance.  I did not think that a repressive regime is capable of change or reform: it just can't happen.  They all privately use the example of Gorbachev.  They feel that reform is a slippery slope that would lead to their downfall eventually.  I know from a person close to Bashshar that the latter has always argued against free elections because the Muslim Brotherhood would win all the seats, as he would say.  He used to argue, privately, that preparing the Ba`th Party and building it up, would be the prerequisite to allow a measure of free elections.  Of course, the Ba`th Party is as weak and hated as it has always been.  Bashshar never succeeded in building it up, because it can't be built up.  The speech offered nothing: except the conspiracy theory about the protests.  I am big on conspiracy theories in the Arab world, and I do believe that Israel/Saudi Arabia have been involved in fomenting trouble and subversion in Syria.  But that does not mean that there are no real and genuine protests (the bulk of the protests are real and genuine).  Bashshar offered that there are sincere protesters but that they were duped by Fitnah scenario from outside.  He wanted to appear strong and determined, and in that he succeeded.  He was speaking not to the Syrian public, but to his Alawaite minority base. Let us not forget the narrow sectarian base of the regime, the secular inclusive rhetoric of Bashshar notwithstanding.  The speech was actually grotesque and repugnant: at a time when unarmed protesters were shot and children were arrested, he made silly jokes (I commented on Facebook yesterday that one of the (additional) problems in the Arab world, is that the entourage of our tyrants convince them that they are funny: so they make jokes and they crack themselves up).   His humor was tasteless and unfunny.  He seemed arrogant and insensitive.  And the cheers and clownish behavior of his lousy puppet parliament will be saved for future plays in free Damascus, to mock the Syrian Ba`thist tyranny.  The Syrian parliament and the Saudi Shura Council: are somebody's idea about satire of parliament.  What jokes they are those two.  And the statements of their members should be preserved to account for their behavior later.   They were like penguins: and how undignified.  But tyrants appreciate that kind of behavior.  Bashshar today announced the formation of yet another committee to investigate: add that to his committee to investigate the murder of lousy Rafiq Hariri.  Has a committee in Ba`thist Syria ever reached conclusions ever?   He got intoxicated with scenes of massive demonstrations in his support. Those demonstrations surprised me really and I don't buy the Hariri media notions that they were all forced.  I do believe that there are Syrians who for whatever reasons like Bashshar and want him to succeed.  A pro-Syrian politician called me last week upon returning from Syria and told me that the situation is serious and that it could easily get out of hand, if Bashshar did not deal with it skillfully.  He added that Bashshar is well-liked by his people, unlike neighboring Arab countries.  That may be true, but his speech was offensive to all Syrians, or it should be.  Those regimes are hopeless: they can't be reformed.  As-Safir and Al-Akhbar should have been more, much more, negative about the speech.  It deserves only scorn.  

Asad's speech (I)

Comrade Hussein sent me this about Asad's speech (I cite with his permission):  "Principles aside, I think the Syrian president made a political mistake today..It reminded me of the fatal mistake that Khameni committed following the 2009 elections: he was too confident in his abilities and support that he disrespected the people thinking they can be bullied. Bashar did the same, expect for the fact that he does not have an ideological support base like Khamnei. He will have to make concesions soon, but they will be humiliating. The first speech is what sets the tone of the whole symphony."

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

4 million Israeli cluster bombs

this is the number of cluster bombs that Israel planted in South Lebanon.  In 2006 alone, 47 Lebanese were killed and 353 were injured from those bombs.  


Israel has violated Lebanese sovereignty 7817 times since 2006 but Lebanon is yet to launch an official complaint at Israel at the UN Security Council.


The lousy Hamas government in Gaza bans a commemoration of Land Day.  

Is the Libyan opposition Kosher, asks a top US diplomat?

"Gene A. Cretz, the American ambassador to Libya, said last week that he was impressed by the democratic instincts of the opposition leaders and that he did not believe that they were dominated by extremists. But he acknowledged that there was no way to know if they were “100 percent kosher, so to speak.”"

Asad's speech

Basically, he said that the reforms amount to a conspiracy.  Good night.

Meet the "leaders" of the Libyan "revolution"

"But oddly, the Libyan revolution has been led by inauspicious technocrats from within the Gadhafi regime. One of these is Mahmoud Jibril, a US-educated professor who became secretary of the national planning council under Gadhafi.   Jibril spent years working with Gadhafi's son Saif on political and economic reforms, and while many of those efforts were stifled by reactionary elements in the regime, the job put him in contact with international diplomats...But the chairman of the National Council is Mustafa Abdel Jalil, who was much more of a public figure under Gadhafi. He rose through Libya's legal system to become justice minister..." (thanks Sultan) 

Tunisia speaks: Israel surprised

"On Sunday, the Israeli cabinet signed off on a package of funding to help Tunisian Jews move to Israel, citing "the worsening of the Tunisian authorities' and society's attitude toward the Jewish community, as well as the difficult economic situation that has been created in the country since the revolution."   That drew a furious response from the Tunisian foreign ministry, which condemned Israel's "interference" in the country's internal affairs by offering financial incentives to encourage Jews to emigrate.  It also prompted the leader of the Jewish community in Tunisia to criticise the Israeli government for its offer and say that "no Jew is going to leave the country."  The ministry expressed "great regret" over what it described as "a malicious call to Tunisian citizens to immigrate to Israel in an attempt to damage the image of Tunisia after the revolution and to create suspicion about its security, its economy and its stability.  "Tunisia is outraged by the statements... (from) a country which still denies the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homeland, shamefully defying international law," it said.   The strongly worded statement sparked surprise in Israel."

lies unto the nations

"Police released four Palestinians residing illegally in Israel, who were arrested Tuesday on suspicion that they had raped an 11-year old Israeli boy, when it turned out the latter had been lying."

repression in Bahrain: not in the US press

Another source in Bahrain sent me this:  "They are arresting people left and right now.  Its crazy.  EVERYONE is getting arrested.  It doesn't matter who.  They even arrested Bahraini blogger Mahmood Al Yousif (at 3 am by the way).  I really have no idea why he would be arrested.  I mean look at his blog.  Its really tame.  All he is known for is making "No Sunni No Shii just Bahraini" badges and calling for my internet freedom.  I mean, yes he supported the February 14 movement but really thats about it.  Arresting him is a new low.  Now that he is arrested, they might as well arrest everyone who has ever blogged, tweeted, or posted facebook messages calling for reform (because he was calling for reform and not regime change).  Basically - we can no longer have opinions in Bahrain.  Here is his blog."

Counting the calories of the people of Gaza: all that you have done to our people is registered in notebook, o occupiers

"The Tel Aviv District Court last week ordered the office of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories to release internal documents that detail the minimum nutritional requirements and calorie calculations needed to sustain the residents of the Gaza Strip."

King of Jordan playing video games

Here, King PlayStation is playing video games with his brothers on his private plane.  (thanks Chris)

Gap between rich and poor in Syria

Syrian dissident, Fayiz Sarah writes about the gap between rich and poor in Syria. (thanks Kamal)

News for sale on Al-Arabiyyah TV (the news station of King Fahd's brother-in-law)

A well-known Western correspondent in the Middle East sent me this:  "fyi...i met a German diplomat who said German and other governments are paying al Arabiya what he said was millions of dollars to send their reporters to do soft-ball economic and even political stories about Germany or whatever country, which of course the viewer has no idea about when they watch the item. as far as he is aware the US is doing this too with the channel. He said Al Jazeera didn't engage in such activities to his knowledge, but then with Qatari money right now they don't have to (if you publish this, please keep my name off and don't say..."

Dialect pronunciation on Al-Jazeera

Comrade Joseph sent me this:  "I have noticed in the last two months a very interesting development on Al-Jazeera, pursuant to other relatively recent language-related changes that have been noticeable for a while. While in the last year plus, al-Jazeera began to refer to Hilf Shimal al-Atlasi as “Hilf al-Nato,” which makes no sense in Arabic, or  to refer, for a while now, to “al-Mihraqah” as the Hulukust which also makes no sense in Arabic (and there are other English words with longstanding Arabic equivalents that are being used increasingly) not to mention Al-Jazeera’s hosting of Arab intellectuals who insist on using at least one English word in each sentence all the time, the more recent pronunciation of the “Ga” instead of the “qaf” in the names of North African persons or cities as well as of Jordanian officials and in the Gulf is noteworthy. I should note that al-Jazeera has insisted, correctly I believe, in not granting the northern and urban Egyptian pronunciation (that is erronesouly claimed as representing all “Egyptian” pronunciation when the majority of Egyptians do not uphold it) of the “jim” as “gim” entrance into its coverage (Jamal ‘Abd al-Nasir to name the most obvious example remains Jamal, and never Gamal), increasingly al-Jazeera insists not only on pronouncing the name of Qadhdhafi as Gadhdhafi or of the head of the Jordanian Mukhabarat as “Raggad” and not ‘Raqqad” but also of insisting on naming Libyan cities as “Briga” and not “Burayqa”.  Does this mean that the Egyptian city of Qina should be pronounced on al-Jazeera as “Ina” for example? Why is al-Jazeera conceding on these pronunciations and not on others?"

Glamour magazine covers the Middle East

"GLAMOUR: In Miral, you play a Palestinian woman who’s orphaned. What drew you to this material?
FREIDA PINTO: The moment I read the script, I fell in love with the story, because it wasn’t just a story about four women; it was a story of the people of Israel and Palestine. I felt if there were any way I could be part of this peacemaking process by lending a human touch to the character, I wanted to be involved. I wish people would [remember]that there are children and soldiers dying on both sides. You can’t ignore the politics, but hopefully that won’t become the focus of the film.
GLAMOUR: You were filming in Tunisia when the uprising happened there. What was that like?
FREIDA PINTO: Terrifying. There was a civil war going on. People were burning down shops and malls; there was killing and bloodshed. I was stuck in this massive hotel with 354 rooms and only six guests. The lights kept shutting down, and there was a 5:00 P.M. curfew. But I wasn’t there by myself: Dev [Patel, her Slumdog costar and current boyfriend] came down to see me. I was so glad I had company." (thanks Rounwah)

Look how nice the US is? I mean, really. What a humanitarian gesture.

"The United States on Monday gave a green light to sales of Libyan crude oil from rebel-held territory, giving a potential boost to forces battling Muammar Gaddafi.  A U.S. Treasury Department official said Libyan rebels would not be subject to U.S. sanctions if they avoid entities linked to Gaddafi's regime, which would allow them to sell oil under their control."

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Be fair to the Syrian regime

We have been complaining about the repressive Syrian regime, but I now have to reconsider.  I mean, just today, the regime allowed demonstrations in support of the regime and it did not shoot at the demonstrators at all.  They were allowed to express their love for the leader freely.  If this is not reform, what is?

Meet the new US/Saudi supported leader of Libya

I just saw it on Al-Arabiyyah TV (the news station of King Fahd's brother-in-law, run by his son, Prince `Azzuz who squandered millions of his people's wealth on wooing Yasmeen Bleeth).  The US/Saudi-selected Libyan opposition leader, the lousy Mustafa `Abdul-Jalil has just said--KID YOU NOT--that "dismay with decisions made in the national interest is forbidden".  He denied borrowing the statement from Orwell.  HE really really said that.  Get me the link NOW. 

Look at this: when Zionists desperately insert Hizbullah into a story in Western public eye

"Intelligence on the rebel forces battling Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi has shown "flickers" of al Qaeda or Hezbollah presence, but there is still no detailed picture of the emerging Libyan opposition, NATO's top operations commander said on Tuesday."

Al-Arabiyyah TV

What is most repugnant about Al-Arabiyyah TV (the station of King Fahd's brother-in-law run by his son, `Azzuz) is that they don't care about their own correspondents.  Today, one of their correspondents in Iraq was killed in a bombing and the news is mentioned in passing.  Aljazeera is different in that regard.

Saudi propaganda

You have to read Saudi press these days to amuse yourselves.  Look at this "reformist" newspaper, Al-Watan (a mouthpiece for Prince Khalid Al-Faysal) which catalogues here a bunch of recent Wahhabi clerical pronouncements against protests, demonstrations, and democracy.

Zionist humor of the day

This should be a regular feature here.  It is about Zionist attempt at reassuring fellow Zionists by making up stories and news.  Look who Israel labeled as "top" Syrian dissident.  This is so funny indeed.

Who can arrange for a "dignified exit" for a tyrant better than Saudi king?

"The Saudis have been involved in efforts to secure a “dignified exit” from power, according to an Arab diplomat who spoke on the condition of anonymity in line with diplomatic protocol."

Covering up covert operations in the New York Times

"The explosion on Monday took place as crowds of impoverished local residents were looting the factory for valuable weapons, witnesses said. It appears to have been accidental, possibly caused by a lighted cigarette on gunpowder or a gun used to open a room full of dynamite."  Lighted cigarette?  Really?

What international law?

"The constraints imposed on Libyan forces are similarly radical and far-reaching, going well beyond the obligations imposed by general international law on governments responding to insurgencies. The resolution demands ‘the immediate establishment of a ceasefire and a complete end to violence’, and bans all flights in Libyan airspace unless their sole purpose is ‘humanitarian’. If the expansive authority granted to international forces and the novel obligations imposed on Libya by Resolution 1973 are sanctioned by international law, what kind of law is this? And does it deserve our fidelity?

Resolution 1973 is the latest stage in a political experiment stretching back to the mid-1950s, when the UN and other international actors began to develop and systematise new forms of international executive action designed to fill what they saw as the ‘political vacuum’ emerging in the Middle East and Africa as a result of decolonisation. In claiming the political authority to take executive action independent of the interests of Great Powers, Dag Hammarskjöld challenged other 20th century visions of world order, such as those projected by Britain and France at Suez or Belgium in the Congo. The effect has been to create a long-term policing and managerial role for the UN in the decolonised world.
The idea that the Security Council might have jurisdiction to manage the conduct of a civil war has slowly taken shape, as international lawyers have loyally interpreted the UN Charter in ways that have authorised the new roles adopted by the Security Council, the Secretary-General and the Secretariat. There is little in the Charter that suggests its authors envisaged the creation of a powerful international executive that could undertake such wide-ranging forms of police action as fact-finding, peacekeeping or territorial administration. But this has never been treated as a constraint on UN involvement in such activity. Instead, generations of UN officials and international lawyers have argued that the UN and its organs must be deemed to have whatever powers are necessary to perform their functions. Over time, as the powers considered necessary for maintaining peace and security have been interpreted ever more broadly, an expansive apparatus of international rule has been established." (thanks Laleh)

This is hilarious: when Western countries select leaders for the region

They decided that a Syrian living in Washington, DC is the leader of the protests.  I wonder how many Syrians actually know who he is. (thanks Ahmet)

Iraqi protests at US bases

This is not in the US press, of course.  Protests against US bases? How dare they protest against their "liberators"? (thanks Ali)

The Economist Debate: my 2nd contribution

Here is the link.

PS I, of course, would never use the silly title of "Sir".  That was added by the editor.

Important achievement for the US in Iraq, brags the New York Times. Only 184 people were killed last month

New York Times' desperate attempt to improve the image of Iraq:  "Nevertheless, overall violence in Iraq has dropped sharply, especially since the height of the sectarian civil war in 2006 and 2007, but also compared with last year. In February, for example, 184 people were killed in attacks around the country, with the exception of the semiautonomous Kurdish region in the north, according to statistics from the Ministry of Interior. In February 2010, 435 were killed.
So while the daily thrum of smaller attacks goes on, the drop in violence has allowed a version of everyday life to blossom. A new Ferris wheel just opened in one of Baghdad’s largest parks, rising above the blast walls, and on Sunday, the first day of the workweek here, it was packed with families."  And notice that they decided to exclude the Kurdish region.

The Zionist entity: why its years are numbered

There is something really bizarre about the Zionist entity.  Self-declared "democracies" usually perfect themselves and improve the rights of their citizens.  Not in the case of Israel--the disgrace unto the nations.  The state is becoming more and more racist by the day: and it insitutionalizes its racism on continuous basis.  Israel? Its years are numbered.   I told an audience in Anaheim recently: I can't wait to celebrate the demise of Israel.  

Apology to my readers

I posted an item about Faruq Ash-Shar` that does not seem to be accurate.  Some even suggested that I remove it, although you are aware I don't remove posts, and I don't even change them after I post them.  I only posted that item after checking it carefully, and I know the source and know his "close" connection to the person in question.  I am still awaiting explanation and will let you know.  But then again: when the Syrian repressive regime clamps down on the press, unverified rumors prevail.

Saudi reforms

"Saudi Arabia is printing 1.5m copies of an edict by religious scholars outlawing protests in the conservative kingdom as un-Islamic, the state news agency said.  Saudi Arabia, the world's top oil exporter and a major US ally, is an absolute monarchy that does not tolerate any form of public dissent.  It managed to stifle an attempt to stage a mass protest on 11 March with a large security presence on the streets.  Religious scholars issued their fatwa, or religious edict, and senior princes issued warnings in advance.  "The grand mufti requested that a number of government and private firms print and distribute more than a million copies," the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) said, adding that 500,000 copies had already been printed."

Syrian shooting versus Jordan shooting (at people) in the New York Times

As I have been on the road for the last few days, I have been reading the issues of New York Times.  The hard issue of the New York Times from Saturday had this headline: "Syria kills protesters" on its front page.  In the inside pages, on p. A 8, you read: "Riot police in Jordan clear camp of protesters"--no mention in the headline that people were shot at and beaten.

Lebanese press and Syria

This may surprise you, but are you aware that the Lebanese press which has been most critical of the Syrian regime has been As-Safir and Al-Akhbar, and not the March 14 Hariri-Saudi press?  In fact, Al-Mustaqbal, the Hariri rag, led its front page with the news that Saudi King was reassured about the situation in Syria.  This is another tough critique of the Syrian regime by comrade Ibrahim Amin who even recommended putting the cousin of Bashshar on trial (without naming him).

That Arab League

It took the Arab League 10 years (from 1964 to 1974) to accept to deal with the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people.  Under orders from the US, it took the Arab League weeks to deal with the Saudi-supported, Mustafa `Abd-Al-Jalil as the representative of the Libyan people.

Bashshar Al-Asad

Flash: Bashshar Al-Asad has announced that he has appointed a special committee to look into the possibility of him giving an address to the nation.  More on this developing story.

My comments on Aljazeera Arabic last night

"Anonymous crazy bear" taped my comments on Aljazeera from less than an hour ago.  He noted that my comments on Aljazeera are getting shorter and shorter.  A reader from Facebook remarked that the interview was cut short as soon as I mentioned the word...Bahrain.

Monday, March 28, 2011


I will comment on Obama's speech on Aljazeera Arabic in two hours and 15 minutes from now.

Comrade Bassam

Comrade Bassam, who hails from Tartus, comments on Syria on Democracy Now.

Syrian regime TV

An excellent critique of Syrian regime TV by comrade Pierre in Al-Akhbar.

Former Crown Prince Hasan of Jordan

I can't stand this guy who used to be the most hard-line anti-Palestinian element in the regime.  But I hate him more in recent years when he has been posing as a "reformer."  Do you now see why I hate and oppose reform with every fiber of my being?

The new Qatar

Sa`d Hariri, who had bad relations with Qatar, has just arrived to Doha to meet with the Emir.  Saudi Arabia is very pleased with Qatar these days.

Israel's dirty hands

The Tunisian foreign ministry strongly denounces the Israeli calls for the flight of Tunisian Jews from Tunisia to Israel.  Who appointed the Zionist usurping entity as spokesentity for Jews around the world?

The young Muslim Brothers and the old

On the new young generation of Muslim Brotherhood and their conflict with the old guard. (I am sympathetic to neither).

sexual harassment in...the West

"In an online study by, 95% of respondents said they had been the victims of leering, honking or whistling and a large proportion have been groped or grabbed in public." (thanks Nasir)

Isabel Kershner: the ambassador of Israeli propaganda offices in the New York Times

Notice that not one passing reference to an Israel war is allowed in the New York Times without providing a justification for that war:  "The cease-fire has largely held since the end of Israel’s three-week military offensive in Gaza in the winter of 2008-9. That war came after years of rocket fire against southern Israel."

Hillary: tell us more about your "Arab friends." How many wives do they have, and how many political prisoners do they keep?

"our European friends and our Arab friends as very vital to their interests.”"

ADL: working hard to limit freedoms of speech

"ADL commended the UC Hastings College of Law Board of Directors for adopting a resolution that "the College should take all steps necessary to remove the Hastings name and brand from the 'Litigating Palestine' conference," but expressed "deep disappointment" that the Board's decision had not been implemented.  The conference, composed of a veritable who's who of the anti-Israel movement, was designed to delegitimize and unjustly cast Israel as a pariah state under the guise of academic freedom." (thanks Joseph)

Saudi King: father of all Arab tyrants

"Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdel Aziz called Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Monday to reaffirm his support for the Syrian leadership, the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) reported on Monday.  Abdel Aziz said his kingdom supports Syria in confronting “the conspiracy targeting [the country] and aimed at harming its security and stability,” the report said." (thanks Raed)

Please: stop crying. Zionists lost Husni Mubarak, and then Elizabeth Taylor

""she was also a supporter of Israel to a degree that largely went unmentioned this past week, bringing to the cause a commitment nearly unimaginable among Hollywood stars today. In a life famously shared with seven husbands, Taylor’s relationship with Israel was one of her longest"". (thanks "Ibn Rushd")

This is Zionism

"The police investigation into the Itamar murders remains under a gag order. No individual Palestinian has been accused or even named as a suspect by the police. However, the resident of the neighboring Palestinian village Awarta, who have suffered for years from settler pogroms, are being collectively blamed and punished. According to a report by three International Solidarity Movement volunteers living under curfew in Awarta, Israeli soldiers and settlers have rampaged through the village in recent days, seeking murder suspects and the satisfaction that comes with retributive violence.   The soldiers reportedly destroyed property, stole money, defecated on the floors of homes, and blindfolded and beat residents, leaving one 28-year-old man so badly injured he had to be smuggled to a hospital in Nablus. Afterwards, approximately 300 masked settlers descended on the town and attacked its residents, breaking the arms of two men.  ”Why do you have to punish all this people?” an ISM activist asked one of the soldiers. ”We have to punish these people so they will understand,” the soldier reportedly replied."

House Arrest my potato

I don't believe the claim by the Egyptian military council that Mubarak and his family are under house arrest.  This is like the Ahmad Shafiq cabinet claimed that corrupt billionaire, Ahmad `Izz, was under house arrest in...the Four Seasons in Cairo.  He was later allowed to slip out of the country.

The Tunisian model

Tunisia--not Egypt, I am afraid--is the revolutionary model.  They are so impressive how they keep pushing for their goals.  They even established a broad coalition of leftist and nationalist parties to push ahead with the goals of their revolution.  I appoint Tunisia to lead the revolutionary charge in the Arab world, and call for Tantawi to be put on trial at once for crimes he has committed with his lousy armed forces before, during, and after the uprising.

Zionists really want the Al-Asad family to remain in charge in Syria

It is all clear now.  The Israelis and their supporters want to keep Al-Asad family in charge in Damascus.

Egyptian Justice Minister

The press conference by the Egyptian justice minister the other day was a horrific example of the new trend in the Egyptian government, under the watchful eyes of Saudi-supported,  Military chief, Tantawi.  He spoke like any Mubarak minister, and used such Orwellian language regarding strikes and regarding a new law that would allow the billionaires and the Mubaraks and the cronies to basically get away with their crimes provided they pay back some of the loot.  There should be pressure for the overthrow of the new Egyptian government.  The revolutionary momentum can't stop.

Aljazeera's services are noted

"Le Qatar a donné son feu vert aux rebelles libyens pour commercialiser le pétrole extrait dans l'est du pays, contrôlé par les opposants à Mouammar Kadhafi, a-t-on appris dimanche des insurgés.  "Nous avons conclu un accord avec le Qatar. La prochaine expédition (de pétrole) aura lieu dans moins d'une semaine", a déclaré Ali Tarhouni, porte-parole pour les questions économiques, pétrolières et financières du gouvernement rebelle." (thanks Evelyne)

Let us call for the overthrow of the Libyan regime that will replace Qadhdhafi

I am now ready to call for the overthrow of the regime that will replace Qadhdhafi, just as I supported for years the overthrow of the Qadhdhafi regime.  The Saudi role in the support of the lousy Mustafa `Abdul-Jalil guarantees the birth of a monstrous Libyan regime.  

Amos Oz

Read what I had written about him before. I wrote an article-length commentary about him for Al-Akhbar, which appeared here in translation, and I tried to document his long history of racism and war-mongering. "Oz was never a radical. He even supported Operation Cast Lead in the beginning, embarrassingly enough - before quickly recovering, calling for a cease-fire and admitting the damage to the south and the brutal strike Israel carried out in Gaza were disproportionate." This charlatan supported every Israeli war, and the then adjusts later to pose as a man of peace (he reminds me of Thomas Friedman regarding the US war on Iraq in 2003: he was a cheerleader and then when it failed, he posed as its critic). (thanks David)

P.S. My unpaid employee that gets paid in promises of blenders linked the translation to the Amos Oz article here.

BBC correspondent in Damascus

I heard her say the other day that the Hama massacre took place in the late 1980s.  I kid you not.

A sweet Saudi river

I have since my teens believe that a major obstacle toward liberation of Palestine and the overthrow of Arab regimes (and the relationship between the two goals is dialectical) is represented by the House of Saud.  Saudi media offers of the most vulgar, crude, and repugnant propaganda of any country in the world, and that includes Anver Hoxa's Albanian phase.  I am so irritated these days to read Saudi propagandists (and not all of them are Saudi nationals--many Arab Lebanese, of course--damn those Lebanese are good at prostrations before Gulf princes) who are offering advice about democracy to Arab governments. I kid you not.  And they are not joking, and many offer the Saudi model as an example.  This is an actual headline in the mouthpiece of Prince Salman and his sons, Ash-Sharq Al-Awsat:  "The Statement by Servitor of The Two Holy Sites to his people, and his royal decrees are a sweet river..."

Sunday, March 27, 2011

From the Syrian ambassador in Washington, DC: let them eat Dostoevsky

"I vividly recall when, at age 20, I faced an extremely rueful condition and delved into hisHumiliated and Insulted. Tearfully crying for the misery of his protagonists gave me a legitimate excuse for grieving loudly while not outwardly admitting any personal hurt." (thanks Yaman)

Shoes in the UAE

"Can I buy shoes in large sizes?
Shoes in large sizes are available in the U.A.E. International shoe stores tend to carry larger sized shoes. Smaller, independently owned shops, especially those in the souk areas, tend to carry smaller sized shoes typically worn by Middle Eastern and Asian men and women." (thanks Paul)

Human Rights Watch really hearts NATO war crimes: look at this insane argument

"Human Rights Watch’s London director Tom Porteus cautioned that even confirmed evidence of civilian deaths did not necessarily mean negligence or malice given the uncertainties of aerial bombardment.  “Just because you’ve got a civilian body killed in an airstrike, doesn’t mean there’s been a war crime or even a violation of international humanitarian law,” he said. As for coalition officials, he said that they were “clearly bending over backward to say that they’re bending over backward to avoid civilian casualties.”"  Would they say the same about Arab missiles against Israel? (thanks Hicham)

Son of Saudi King

"Hair-dresser turned movie producer Jon Peters confirmed that he sold 5.2 acres of land in Benedict Canyon to a Saudi prince who now plans to construct an 85,000-square-foot compound on the site.  Prince Abdulaziz ibn Abdullah ibn Abdulaziz Al Saud, a son of Saudi King Abdullah,  purchased three adjacent parcels in 2009, Peters said. Property records list the sale price at $12 million." (thanks Khaled)

Israel is still freaking out, notwithstanding Saudi help

""My sense is people in Israel are quite concerned, unsure that it's a good thing," said Robert Schadler, a senior fellow in public diplomacy at the American Foreign Policy Council and former State Department official in the Reagan administration."

Educating for enslaving

"Bahrain has cancelled the scholarships of 40 students for taking part in rallies calling for the overthrow of the regime, the education ministry said on Friday.  "The scholarships were granted with the stipulation that the students behave in a satisfactory manner and commit themselves to not harming the reputation of Bahrain in any way," Nabeel Al Assoumi, the head of public relations and media, said "

Arab media and the burning of the Qur'an in Florida

I have to say that I hate how Arab media gave coverage to the crackpot in Florida who burned the Qur'an for public view.  This got quite a bit of coverage in the Arab press. And the corrupt Mufti of Lebanon (who works for Saudi Arabia) even blamed the US government for the act (and look at the coverage in the Hariri rag, Al-Mustaqbal).  With friends like this in the Middle East, the US does not need enemies alas.

Why the US media is enamored with Akbar Ahmed (and why the NYT has decided that this British "Sir" speaks for US Muslims)

Sarah sent me this: "Was browsing my old uni's website to see how badly the Arab Studies department has been decimated while the Israel Studies department grows.  Anyway, I noticed while browsing the Israel Studies website the latest newsletter which features Akbar Ahmed, who of course is a professor at AU, hugging Michael Oren.  I've attached it to the email.  Source here:   It was in April 2010.  In fact, Ahmed did the intro to Oren's speech and you can watch the intro here:  He calls Oren "a man who can bring peace to a troubled region of the world" LOL   At around 4:20 he says that through his Jewish friends he learned about how attached these friends are to the land of Israel and how Israel is more than a country to his Jewish friends, "it is the expression of their religious and cultural identity."  AND OH MY GOD - he actually states this at around 5:20 when he brings up the demographics of the Middle East, "Within this century, the population of 100s of millions of discontented Muslims surrounding Israel will double." And that's why Israel needs to make peace.  So then Oren starts talking and says that Ahmed has done so much to establish bridges between Israel and the surrounding Muslim nations and that the State of Israel is very appreciative of his efforts.   OH GOD - Oren then says how happy he is that Israeli Studies has been fully integrated with the Middle East Studies program at AU.  However, as far as I can remember, Middle East studies is a brand new creation at AU and it has been Arab Studies for a while.  They *tried* to integrate Israel studies with Arab studies by making the head of Israel studies the head of Arab studies (ugh) but the Arab Studies professors all collectively went "what the hell" and that was stopped.  Arab Studies is still a stand alone program.  But from what I can see, there are hardly any Arab Studies courses at the university anymore. "

Gates and civilian casualties in Libya

Robert Gates yesterday refused to believe that US and NATO forces have killed any civilians in Libya.  None whatsoever.  He stated that the regime has placed its own civilian victims in camera view.  Now why is that, Mr. Gates? The US and NATO forces are not in the business of killing civilians at all?  Does that mean that the civilian casualties of US and NATO bombing in Afghanistan were also placed for camera view by the puppet Karzai regime? That the Iraqi puppet regime also places its own civilian victims for camera view?  And what about this killing of civilians by NATO just yesterday in Afghanistan? Were those Qadhhafi's victims that he placed in Afghanistan for camera view?  It is not that Gates assumes that we are dumb: it is that he is not questioned, mocked, or ridiculed as he should be in the US media.

The Saudi-US counter-revolution (with Aljazeera on board)

I will write about how this nasty counter-revolution began.  I believe that Saudi Arabia (with tacit Israeli support) decided to abort and hijack the Arab uprisings.  This happened right after the fall of Mubarak, when the relations between Saudi Arabia and US worsened due to Saudi displeasure with US behavior (as if the US did not do all it could do to save Mubarak).  But then the US came on board and the two are now clearly partners as they have been all along. Yesterday, I heard on Aljazeera a most bizarre "report": it said that a US/EU delegation is in Yemen to help in the "peaceful" transition of power in Yemen. In Yemen, for potato's sake, where the US was instrumental in the construction of the military-intelligence regime there.  The close relationship between Prince Saud Faysal and Tantawi are the other elements in the sinister plot.  The US and Saudi Arabia (with Israel not far behind) will basically try to guarantee that the new regimes are as bad if not even worse than the ancien regimes.  Witness them try to bring Rif`at Al-Asad and `Abdul-Halim Khaddam with other reactionary elements from the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood to power.  Now the task become opposition to all regimes and to their replacements with puppets of Saudi Arabia.  The good news is this: no matter what they arrange, fear is removed and the tight security control will be loosened forever.

Khamis Qadhdhafi: guest of the US

"Gennaro said the U.S. State Department approved of the trip, and considered Gaddafi a reformer. He said the government signed off on the itinerary, at times offering advice that affected the company's plans for Gaddafi.  State department officials denied any role in planning, advising or paying for the trip.  "We did greet him at the airport. That is standard courtesy for the son of the leader of a country," said State Department spokesman Mark Toner. Toner said the government was aware of Gaddafi's itinerary, but "did not sign off on it.""

In support of Lybian uprising and against US military intervention in Libya

Comrades and I drafted and signed this proclamation.  It has been first published in the Egyptian Ad-Dustur.

Bashshar, the figure head

When the regime in Syria faces the challenges that it faces today, you can pretty much assume that Bashshar becomes a figure head; that the `Alawite military/intelligence elite takes over.

Faruq Ash-Shar` under House Arrest

I have known this since yesterday but only now I am at liberty to report: Syrian vice-president, Faruq Ash--Shar` is under house arrest.  He has broken with the regime over the recent repression (although he has not broken with the regime over other more previous repression, of course).  

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Cracks in the Syrian ruling elite

There are serious cracks in the top echelons of the Syrian ruling group buy I can't go into specifics now. The brutality of the regime is digging a bigger hole for itself.

Ma`ruf Al-Bakhit

Read the remarks by Jordanian prime minister, Ma`ruf Al-Bakhit.  His remarks overlap with those of Syrian regime propaganda: that it is all by an outside Islamist conspiracy.  The funny thing is that some official Jordanian media portray the lousy king as if he is with the protesters against his OWN government. (thanks Maria)

Aljazeera and Syria

Traditionally, Aljazeera gave scant coverage to Syrian opposition perhaps because the Qatari regime is close to the Syrian regime.  In the last few days, Aljazeera started covering Syria and the news broadcast narrator even wondered (almost in plea) about possible military intervention by what he called "the international community."  Why when they say "international community" I see NATO planes?


Yesterday, Aljazeera's main evening newscast gave a summary of the Arab uprisings: it listed all the countries in which protests occurred and simply omitted Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Oman.  That is how blatant the propaganda there is now.

Al-Qaradawi again

This demagogic tele-Islamist should receive a prize from the House of Saud for his sectarian mobilization and agitation during the crisis.  He has not offered one analysis of opinion that is not dripping with sectarianism.  He also proved to be utterly loyal to the Qatari royal family: and I noticed that Saudi media which used to criticize him daily, has now taken a new appreciative view of him.  

Friday, March 25, 2011

Gates realizes that there are only three authoritarian regimes in the whole Middle East

"Gates cited Syria, Libya and Iran as examples of "authoritarian regimes (that) have suppressed their people and have been willing to use violence against them.""  And one of the three was a close ally of the US, until a few weeks ago.

Al-Khalifah and the sectarian war

"Pakistani emigration to Bahrain jumped to almost 6,000 people in 2010, a sixfold increase from 2001, official Pakistan government figures show. A breakdown of how many Pakistanis go into security-force jobs wasn't available, but Police of Pakistani origin in Bahrain say as many as 7,000 people from a police force of 25,000 come from Pakistan.  Khalil Almarzooq, a senior member of Al-Wefaq, Bahrain's largest opposition party, claims the government has used foreign Sunni Muslims in the security services to keep control of the population of 1.2 million, two-thirds of whom are Shiites. "The reason for the security apparatus is to protect the regime, not the people," he says."

Hillary says that Moroccan autocracy is a democratic model

"At a joint press briefing after meeting with Foreign Minister Taieb Fassi Fihri yesterday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton praised Morocco for advancing democratic reforms under His Majesty King Mohammed VI, and for advocating international efforts to protect civilians in Libya. She said Morocco is "well-positioned to lead" for democratic change during this "crucial moment in time for Morocco, the Maghreb, and the Middle East," and endorsed Morocco's autonomy plan as a "serious, realistic, and credible" approach to end the Western Sahara conflict."

`Ali Farzat responds

`Ali Farzat--that most brilliant of cartoonist--responds to the lousy press conference by Buthayna Sha`ban.

Saudi dirty hands

Just like in the Iranian opposition, there are elements--elements, not all--in the Syrian opposition.  They operate through the criminal and corrupt Rif`at Asad (who in turn works for Saudi Arabia) and through the Muslim Brotherhood.  Note that Saudi propaganda claimed that there were members of Hizbullah involved in repression in Iran, just as they now claim that there are members of Hizbullah in Syria, as the repressive regimes require the assistance of few Hizbullah fighters.  This is a clear Saudi agenda, just as Israel claimed in the July Israeli war on Lebanon in 2006 that Iranian Revolutionary Guards were found dead in South Lebanon--and Saudi media of course "reported" that with zest.  Syrian opposition is very rich and varied, and it is important that Saudi Arabia does not hijack it as it did in Libya.

The sectarian factor in Syria

The Alawite ruling elite in Syria would not give up power willingly or unwillingly.  If protests grow in Syria, bloody confrontations are very likely.  This would resemble neither Tunisia nor Egypt.  There is no Army that can stand above the fray.

Reform in Syria?

Of course, the announcement of "reforms" in Syria yesterday would not have been sufficient to address popular grievances.  A decision to "study" the matter of state of emergency? Or a formation of a committee to combat "corruption"? This was a joke and things seem to be getting out of control.  

The disgrace of Lebanon: Defense Minister Ilyas Murr

"noting that the Israelis behaved "sweetly" and asked if the LAF "could come tomorrow." Murr was amazed that the Israelis had already pulled most of their troops out of the South, even though the LAF and UNIFIL-plus might still be several days away from deploying. Murr complained that the vacuum left by the Israeli "defection on the ground" is being rapidly reclaimed by Hizballah. In addition, what he saw as the relatively poor Israeli military performance, especially over the last two days of conflict when dozens of Israeli soldiers were killed, had left Hizballah in a triumphant and uncompromising mood. "The IDF put us in a difficult situation," complained Murr, adding in a typical flourish, "They are the worst army in the world.""

Thursday, March 24, 2011


Dubai allowed a demonstration for protesters against the Syrian regime in Dubai.  Can you imagine the reaction of the Dubai ruling polygamous princes if people demonstrated against Bahraini regime?

The counter-revolution in Bahrain

Source sent me this: "- After the 7 opposition group coalition released a statement supporting the National Union ending the strikes, Al Wefaq and Amal (smaller religious opposition group) said that they never called for an end to the strikes.  The rest of the opposition groups were silent.
- Yesterday, Waad published news on their website, twitter and facebook that Munira Fakhro's house was attacked by 5 molotov cocktails but that she wasn't in the house during the attack and her house suffered minimal damage.  Several Waad people confirmed.  Today, they publish a statement denying that they ever said that.
- News that Al Wefaq's website was hacked into.  Al Wefaq then releases a statement saying that no one hacked into their website.
- The Bahrain teachers union has now called for an end to the strikes
- 5 of the members of the upper house (appointed) in Bahrain who resigned last week in protest have now withdrawn their resignations.
What is going on? Honestly I have no idea but it looks like either someone is hacking into their website and accounts or someone is threatening them."

This is how the US and French colonial ambassadors issue orders to their tools in March 14

"Emie and Ambassador Feltman prodded the Lebanese on a "moment of truth" regarding Hizballah's arms, but Hamadeh, Jumblatt, and Khoury thought that provoking that moment of truth now would hand Hizballah a clear victory. "We need to wait at 粑east until 'the celebrations' are over," Jumblatt said."

Can you imagine how big this story would be if Hizbullah abducted two Israeli occupying citizens?

"Israel abducted two Lebanese shepherds Tuesday in an act that prompted calls for international action to be taken against the Jewish state following its latest violation of Lebanese sovereignty."

Syria and Saudi Arabia

The Syrian government tries so hard to appease the Saudi government to no avail.  The Syrian foreign minister even supported the right of Bahrain to call in Saudi troops, in the hope that Saudi media would ease up on Syria.  It did not work.  Al-Arabiyyah TV (the station of King Fahd-s brother-in-law run by his son) is now leading its news cast with news and rumors about Syria.

Robert Gates

Today, Robert Gates was asked about Bahrain, and he answered by talking about Iranian repression.  

Propaganda clips

People don't know this about Saudi TV propaganda outlets, like Al-Arabiyyah (the news station of King Fahd's brother-in-law which is run by his son, `Azzuz): it runs propaganda clips.  They have this week been running a clip showing scenes from protests in Bahrain and then shows clips from the recent speech by Hasan Nasrallah in which he paid tribute to Iranian leadership.  For Saudi princes, it counts as evidence of an outside conspiracy.

March 14 clowns upset that Israeli humiliatingly rushed out of Lebanon

"Jumblatt thought that the Israelis were in "too much of a hurry to leave," for, once the Israelis are out of Lebanon, in his view, a major pressure point on Hizballah is removed. In Jumblatt's view, Hizballah is not in the mood right now to attack the IDF, even inside Lebanon, but having the Israelis inside is an embarrassment to Hizballah. "We can ask, 'why is Israel occupying part of Lebanon?'" Jumblatt explained. The Israelis no longer seemed insistent on waiting until the arrival of an expanded UNIFIL, Hamadeh said, describing a briefing he had received from the Lebanese general who had participated in an IDF-UNIFIL-LAF meeting in Naqoura earlier that day. Hamadeh said that many Israelis had already departed Lebanon and wanted to begin a more formal handover to UNIFIL as early as 8/16, well before any new UNIFIL troops would be ready to go. "How is it that Israel can insist on a new multinational force, but then they end up just leaving the same old UNIFIL to take over?" Khoury asked."

It was not Napoleon, o learned Walid Jumblat

"Hamadeh, Jumblatt, and Khoury all had the same interpretation of Nasrallah's speech: "l'etat, c'est moi,"  Jumblatt quoted Napoleon."  Of course, this was said by Louis XIV in 1755.

How March 14 received the news of Israeli humiliation in 2006

"The ebullient mood on the streets outside Hamadeh's seaview apartment contributed to the unrelentingly bleak mood of the March 14 figures inside, as other March 14 politicians called Hamadeh, Jumblatt, and Khoury intermittently throughout the evening to express fear -- and, in a few cases, a desire to quit Lebanon altogether."

Sanyurah explains his Hariri-Israeli-Saudi agenda

"Siniora expressed his support for full implementation of UNSCR 1559, reiterated the need to disarm Hezbollah, changing the status quo ante". I suggest that Sanyurah accompanied by Sa`d Hariri begin to disarm Hizbullah now. I am sure that they can succeed, given the toughness of Sanyurah's tears.

US does not interfere in internal affair of countries

"We hope that we can help Rifi with his desire to get weapons to the ISF. In general, because of the ISF's connections to Saad Hariri and its heavily Sunni (i.e., essentially anti-Hizballah) officer ranks, the ISF is, in fact, relatively (albeit not 100 percent) reliable in terms of its basic outlook."

Ilyas Murr gives advice to Israel

"Murr stressed, however, that both Israel and the USG should remain publicly mute on the Chapter VII issue so as not to provoke a Hizballah rejection." But I like this too: "Murr is known for telling people what they want to hear."

Wow. He understands Western mentality

""He understands the Western mentality," she said."

These are the Bahraini reforms that the US is pleased with

Yahya sent me this:  "As'ad, the airport's security procedures at Bahrain's International Airport are getting worse. Today, I had a call from a close friend who got back from Bahrain, he informed me that he was detained in a dark room with investigators utilizing the bad cop/bad cop interrogation methods, screaming, throwing things.. etc. He repeatedly informed them that he was a Kuwaiti student traveling to Bahrain for years now for academic purposes, they on the other hand asked him about his origin and religious background. They kept him there for an hour until he 'confessed' about his Sunni background. Afterwards in the Capital, he was stopped again by a number of checkpoints that kept asking him the same question about his sect. He told me that those checkpoints were handled by individuals in civilian clothing and in some areas the Saudi Army's patrols."

Killing in Dir`ah

Watch the footage.  It seems that Bashshar Al-Asad just added a massacre to his c.v.  His father (and uncle Rif`at who now poses as a democracy advocate because he enjoys...Saudi support, for potato's sake) could not be more proud. (thanks Zaki)

This is the new regime that Saudi Arabia and US are mid-wifing in Libya

"The rebels of eastern Libya have found much to condemn about the police state tactics of Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi: deep paranoia, mass detentions, secret prisons and tightly scripted media tours.  But some of those same tactics appear to be creeping into the efforts of the opposition here as it seeks to stamp out lingering loyalty to Kadafi. Rebel forces are detaining anyone suspected of serving or assisting the Kadafi regime, locking them up in the same prisons once used to detain and torture Kadafi's opponents.  For a month, gangs of young gunmen have roamed the city, rousting Libyan blacks and immigrants from sub-Saharan Africa from their homes and holding them for interrogation as suspected mercenaries or government spies.  Over the last several days, the opposition has begun rounding up men accused of fighting as mercenaries for Kadafi's militias as government forces pushed toward Benghazi. It has launched nightly manhunts for about 8,000 people named as government operatives in secret police files seized after internal security operatives fled in the face of the rebellion that ended Kadafi's control of eastern Libya last month."

This is the Egyptian Military which never won a war

"Female activists detained during the Egyptian army's evacuation of Tahrir Square on March 9 told human-rights organizations that they were beaten, tortured and forced to take virginity tests while in military custody.  Salwa Hosseini, 20, who was taken by soldiers to a military prison on the outskirts of Cairo, told Amnesty International that she and fellow female detainees were strip searched, photographed while naked and subjected to electric shocks. Hossein added that female guards warned the captured women they would be charged with prostitution if they didn't take medical tests to prove they were virgins."

The rapist president of Israel

He was sentenced to 7 years in jail.  I bet all of you that he won't even serve on year in jail.

Kicking all Shi`ites from the Gulf (they have been doing that for years in UAE and other GCC members)

"Arab states in the Gulf plan to deport thousands of Lebanese Shiites over their alleged links to Hezbollah and Iran's elite Revolutionary Guard force, a Kuwaiti newspaper reported on Thursday."

Isabel Kershner solves the crime in Itamar

"The atmosphere began to change with the killing earlier this month of an Israeli family, including three children, by suspected Palestinian assailants in the West Bank settlement of Itamar."  And notice how Israeli propagandists talk about this explosion in Jerusalem "broke the calm" in the area.  Because for those racist Zionists, all the Palestinians who have been killed and injured in the last few weeks, months, years don't count.  I like how Zionists, like Kershner and Bronner, don't even try to hide their racism.  It is out there for all to see.   

Why the New York Times really hearts Elizabeth Taylor

"Ms. Taylor divided her time between her charitable works (including various Israeli causes)..."  Would support by Richard Pearle for Qadhdhafi also count as charitable work?

PS Khelil sent me sample of Taylor's charitable work:
"Taylor Meets with Begin
Jan. 5, 1983....Movie superstar Elizabeth Taylor, dogged by accident and ill-health during her visit to Israel, met briefly today with Prime Minister Menachem Begin at his office in Jerusalem. The session was part of Ms. Taylor's one-woman peace effort: she plans to fly to Beirut tomorrow to see president Amin Gemayel and Israeli officials say she may be in Kiryat Shmona Thursday when the Israeli and Lebanese negotiators resume their sessions there. "

Sectarian letters in Bahrain

This letter has been sent to Shi`ite residents in the predominantly Sunni Muharraq area.

My contacts in Bahrain

Yesterday, I was talking to my sister, Mirvat in Beirut.  We were talking about Bahrain and she asked me about my contacts in Bahrain, and about their sectarian identity.  It hit me, I told her, that I don't know the sectarian identity of any of my contacts.   Bahrain is not like Lebanon, in that regard, and the protest movement in Bahrain has a long (secular) history and it started against Al-Khalifah long before the Islamic Revolution in Iran.

Egyptian Military Council cracks down

"The Egyptian cabinet approved yesterday a decree-law that criminalises strikes, protests, demonstrations and sit-ins that interrupt private or state owned businesses or affect the economy in any way.  The decree-law also assigns severe punishment to those who call for or incite action, with the maximum sentence one year in prison and fines of up to half a million pounds.  The new law, which still needs to be approved by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, will be in force as long as the emergency law is still in force. Egypt has been in a state of emergency since the assassination of former president Anwar Sadat in 1981." (thanks Osman)

Accidents happen in Bahrain

"A top EU diplomat says the police in Bahrain have had a "difficult task" dealing with opposition protesters and in such situations "accidents happen"." (thanks FLC)

The lies of Nicholas Kristof

"Even though some villagers were hit by American shrapnel, one gamely told an Associated Press reporter that he bore no grudges."  Shrapnel?  When and how did you make up that story?  Or who fed you that story?  Shrapnel hitting 6 people and causing a child to lose his leg?  Just like that when there were witnesses that the US rescuers shot at the villagers?  Oh, I see.  Those are sand niggers whose lives are expendable. 

Egyptian people and words

I have been meaning to say this and I should: the Egyptian people are so damn articulate.  They never ever suffer loss for words.  Give any Egyptian a microphone and he/she can talk unendingly.  I don't know why but it is a noticeable phenomenon.  This is why Egyptian TV stations often feature a man or woman sitting behind a microphone and they talk without guests for a long time.  In Lebanon, they always need a script: even when they ask questions to guests.  They act as ill-prepared as members of US Congress in congressional hearings.

The National Front to Resist the Aggression on Libya

I am sure that you won't read a word about this in Western (or Saudi) press.  Leftist organizations in free Tunisia formed "The National Front to Resist the Aggression on Libya."  


The clowning prosecutor of the ICC showed up in Cairo to investigate Qadhdhafi's crimes against his people.  How sensitive.  The guy thinks that we believe that he acts independent of US political will? Will he be allowed to utter one word about Israeli war crimes?  Can you imagine what would happen to him if he showed up in Gaza to investigate Israeli crimes?  He was in fact asked about Israel today on Aljazeera, he did not even muster an answer.  He babbled something incoherent and went on to speak about his work in Dharfur.

Propagandist for Prince Salman (and his sons)

"Ibn Rushd" sent me this: ""We must remember, and learn, that the ordinary citizen today is not concerned with insulting Israel day and night, for that is the pastime of the educated ideologue. For the ordinary citizen, from Saudi Arabia to Algeria, and through Damascus, all he wants is to live with dignity, and to be able to pay his phone bills, buy bread, and educate his children until his last day, in all simplicity, no matter what the elite claim"
+ don't you love the fact that in his bio (to the right), it says : " Mr. Alhomayed holds a BA degree in Media studies from King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah, and has also completed his Introductory courses towards a Master’s degree from George Washington University " 
Aren't you impressed that he's completed these introductory courses ?"

Protests in Syria and government propaganda

A reader who wishes to remain anonymous translated the piece by comrade Khalid Saghiyyeh from Al-Akhbar yesterday:
"Searching for a mob
By Khaled Saghiyeh.
Al-Akhbar Newspaper/ 24.march.2011

Foreigners …Islamists …Israel …Mobs ... even Rats… Erratic and fervent adjectives and terms selected by Arab Rulers to describe the beginnings of popular Intifadas [Uprisings] in their countries. The use of such terms soon acquires unintended consequence; filling the squares with distinct citizens whom publicly declare their National, Arab and Civic Identity. However it seems that the Syrian regime insists upon the use of the same terminology to describe what is occurring in Deraa, as if it has not been witness to what has occurred in Egypt or Tunisia, or what is presently occurring in Libya, Yemen, and Bahrain.
It has been said that Syria is not an Egypt or a Tunisia. That is true, for it is likely that no Arab country can become an Egypt or a Tunisia after what has happened in Libya, Yemen or Bahrain. Unlike the fall of the Mubarak and Ben Ali regimes, the uprisings in other countries have reminded us of domestic schisms, tribal and sectarian structures, to not speak of Oil. All this makes a singular and uniform change unlikely in these countries where the contemporary meaning of Arabism is nothing but a dissemination of Freedom.
Yet the manifestation of the singular ‘people’ that appeared in Tahrir [Freedom] Square, one that has manifested ‘peoples’ in other places, does not deny the fact that any Arab Ruler-whether he is to endure or not- cannot continue to act today as if his citizens are unconscious or nonexistent. For the Arab World’s rubric today is one: Bread, Freedom, and Dignity. And for the benefit of not being misunderstood again, Dignity here is not exclusively the confrontation with external adversaries, but is also- fundamentally- the confrontation with the policeman, the intelligence agent, and members from within the clique.
The nature and extent of what is happening in Deraa remains unclear. What we do recognize is that the regime in Syria, in the manner in which it is conducting itself during these events, does not seem to act as one that has given itself a new opportunity for reform. How sound is the presentation the story of an ‘armed mob’, and the pitiable cinematic scene involving banknotes and rifles in single file, as the official account? And is it possible to consent bloodshed after a group of young schoolchildren penned slogans upon walls?
An official source has declared that ‘the security forces continue to pursue the armed mob that has terrorized civilians and is conducting acts of murder, theft and arson of public and private establishments in Deraa’. All that any individual can desire is that this ‘mob’ will be apprehended. While we await, al-Sham is beautiful, and she deserves bread, freedom and dignity."