Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Amal Alamuddin

She is not a lawyer specializing in human rights, as is often mistakenly said. She is in fact an advocate for lousy regimes: once a Hariri regime, another a Bahrini regime, another time for the Qatari regime in her case in Egypt, and now on behalf of the ousted Qadhdhafi regime. Let us call her a repressive regime advocate.

This is what the candidate for Syria's provisional (opposition) government wrote on Facebook: a holocaust

Embedded image permalink She wrote: "The more arrogant Syria's minorities become I become more certain that there should be a holocaust to exterminate them from existence and I request [God's] mercy upon Hitler who burned the Jews of his time and Sultan `Abdul-Hamid who exterminated the Armenians, and the hero of the Arabs, Saddam Husayn, the man in an age where there were no men, and where we find no men after him...Minorities are evil that we need to rid and to cleans Biald Ash-Sham from them and we call on God to enable our revolutionaries to finish off all those filth from Kurds to Alawites.  [I am] Sunni and proud of my Arabism."

PS Imagine the wide coverage by ALL Western correspondents in the Middle East if this was written by a regime official.  They all would have devoted long articles to it.  Let me predict: not one Western correspondent in Beirut will write on this matter. Not one.

Huffington Post Arabic

As I follow the Arabic version of Huffington Post Arabi it is now possible to refine the assessment by saying: it is in general in line with the propaganda of Arab Gulf regime but is specifically indistinguishable from Qatari regime media.  

It says on the bib: "International Criminal Court". By Palestinian artist Rana Bishara

Monday, August 03, 2015

Can you imagine if it was Muslims who engaged in such public and blatant hate crimes against gays and lesbians? And do you notice that this story didn't get much coverage?

"As the news spread online that an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man had stabbed six people at Jerusalem’s annual Gay Pride Parade on Thursday, accompanied by terrifying images of the attack, critics of Israel were quick to argue that the rampage undermined the country’s self-image as a bastion of tolerance in the region."  But the New York Times manages to as always muddies the water by invoking this sentence: ""There has also been criticism from Muslim and Christian quarters in the past."  What on earth does this have to do with the attack?  I mean, if the suspects are unknown, I would understand. But we know the identify of the attacker and he is NOT Christian or Muslim.

PS As for the "self-image" of Israel, it is a work of fantasy.  Israelis could be engaged of massacre of children and their image at that point would be one of peace and harmony. 

Look how Western media promote propagandists of the House of Saud

"Saudi Arabia for his somewhat liberal views and his attempts to push at the boundaries of Saudi political and social discourse from within the confines of the mainstream press".  Pushing the boundaries? He certainly pushes the boundaries of loyalty and subservience to Saudi princes--various Saudi princes, he is not picky.

hardline terrorists?

From Basim: "The firebombing of the family's home in the occupied West Bank, which killed 18-month-old Ali Saad Dawabsha, sparked an international outcry over Israel's failure to get to grips with violence by hardline Jewish settlers."  Were ISIS terrorists described as "hardline" when they burned the Jordanian pilot alive?"

Notice how New York Times and other Wesern Zionist media strive to avoid referring to Israeli terrorism as terrorism: every day they introduce a new term

"an arson attack ". 

English language propagandists for House of Saud

When Saudi regime turned against the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, the propagandists of House of Saud in English turned against the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas in full force. But when the Saudi regime turned to Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas in their sectarian war, the entire class of Saudi propagandists in English changed their tune and moderated their stance toward the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas--even those who have been railing against Hamas for years. What do you call that? Orders from above. What else do you call it.

Atheists, agnostics & those with no religion in particular

"Atheists, agnostics & those with no religion in particular are the 2nd largest "religious group" in 48% of countries"

vulgar sexism and misogyny in Huffington Post Arabic: "Why your husband hates you" (sic)

In this silly and stupid list, Huffington Post warns women of what drive men away from them. You will find the typical stereotypes from women's magazines from the 1950s.  And and it is supposled to be funny: men don't like shopping. ha ha ha.  Who edits this site? Some Gulf prince? Never mind.

The meeting between Syrian and Saudi regimes

The story of the meeting between Muhammad bin Salman of Saudi Arabia and Ali Mamluk of Syria (wasn't that guy ousted according to the pioneering work of Carol Malouf of the Daily Telegraph?) was first reported by the energetic Muhammad Ballut (Paris correspondent of As-Safir), and then reported on in Al-Akhbar and later in Sunday Times. It shows the true criminal nature of both regimes and their hypocrisy and lack of any principles on any subject. Hope they both fall together, or one before the other.

Finally: the US has been able to find a group of indiginous patriotic Syrians to lead the Syrain revolution without any outside help: that is a truly national "revolution"

"The United States has decided to allow airstrikes to defend Syrian rebels trained by the U.S. military from any attackers, even if the enemies hail from forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, U.S. officials said on Sunday." So even though they are being fought by all sides but the US will intervene to protect their independence.

Zionist ISIS

Fahmi Huwaydi writes about Zionist ISIS

rebranding of terrorists

"The Turks and their allies in Saudi Arabia and Qatar would like to rebrand the Jabhat al-Nusra and Ahrar al-Sham, movements, whose beliefs and actions differ little from Isis, as born-again moderates." "If US aircraft based at Incirlik are forbidden to attack Isis fighters when they are battling either the Syrian Kurds or the Syrian army, the militants’ two main opponents on the ground, then they will be no worse off militarily than they were before. This may explain why Isis has responded so little to the US-Turkish agreement that is supposed to deal it a crippling blow."

Israeli leaders promote slaughter of Palestinian children, then feign outrage

"Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the architect of last summer’s 51-day assault that killed 551 Palestinian children in Gaza, responded to the settler attack with a statement that his government is “united in strong opposition to such deplorable and awful acts.” This is the same man who, following the discovery of the bodies of three kidnapped Israeli teens one year ago, issued a call for blood vengeance, essentially lighting the match that burned alive 16-year-old Palestinian Muhammad Abu Khudair. As journalist Dan Cohen observed, it seems vigilante burnings of Palestinian children have become a yearly Israeli ritual."

Israel's allies

"The director general of Israel’s Foreign Ministry, Dore Gold, called the Middle East’s Sunni Arab nations “Israel’s allies.” "

Institute of Peace?

"But it’s not the first time the institute has served as a platform for American hawkish foreign policy. Robert Turner, the first president of the institute and an appointee by President Ronald Reagan, voiced support for the right-wing death squads in Nicaragua known as the Contras. In more recent history, the institute’s board has included neoconservative leaders such as Daniel Pipes, an advocate for ethnic profiling and the invasion of Middle East countries. Eric Edelman, a current board member, has called for the Obama administration to hike military spending, for the U.S. to support an Israeli military strike on Iran, and for NATO countries to deploy nuclear weapons into former Warsaw Pact states that are now NATO members in an effort to confront Russia."

They’ve turned to Instagram to flaunt their wealth and privilege

"Swanky villas, fleets of gleaming new Mercedes and an entire beach annexed from the public are apparently not enough for some among of the 1,000-strong entourage accompanying Saudi King Salman during his three-week sojourn at the French Riviera. They’ve turned to Instagram to flaunt their wealth and privilege, too." (thanks Amir)

A Kuwaiti journalist

A Kuwaiti journalist was arrested because he retweeted a poem by Ahmad Matar. Do you notice that repression in Gulf regimes don't get coverage in US media? How could they cover when they themselves are doing their best to promote the propaganda interests of Gulf regimes.

hundreds of civilians have died during airstrikes by the U.S. and other nations fighting ISIS

"hundreds of civilians have died during airstrikes by the U.S. and other nations fighting the Islamic State, a marked contrast to the Pentagon’s official admission of just two civilian deaths."  Full report here.

The Politics of Huffington Post Arabic

So the American liberal Huffington Post is a steadily liberal American news site which is to the left of most American liberal media. They try to be consistent but with great difficulty on Palestine.  Yet, they assign the former director-general of Aljazeera media to found the Arabic Huffington Post.  So what is the result? Yet another Arabic news site dedicated to the interests of Arab regimes of the Gulf. Unbelievable.

Huffington Post Arabic: more fluff

First: there is nothing in Huffington Post Arabic that would bother Arab regimes (except perhaps the Syrian regime and a little less the Egyptian regime, i.e. this site is a platform for the Qatari regime).  But there is a lot of silly and fluff stories, like this one about celebrities who are Arabs. They included Jerry Seinfeld. Jerrry Seinfeld? His mother is of Syrian Jewish background but she never identified as an Arab, nor has her son. Do Lebanonese work at that site?

Saturday, August 01, 2015

The agony of the Palestinians: reminders

No matter how hard Western governments and their Arab potentates strive to make Arabs forget about the agony of the Palestinians Israeli terrorists manage to remind Arabs regularly about the suffering and agony of the Palestinians.  

Huffington Post Arabic: Ikhwan "light" or heavy Taliban and Al-Qa`idah?

In this feature on Huffington Post Arabic, there is an interview with Taysir `Alluni (former Aljazeera Kabul bureau chief who was convicted with ties to Al-Qa`idah) talks about "statesman"--kid you not--Mullah `Umar and he says this about him: "His favorable qualities are numerous but from my experience with him I say that his personality represented manhood in its most sublime sense".  Welcome to the Arabic version of the Huffington Post.  

Friday, July 31, 2015

The New York Times and its correspondents in occupied Palestine

Why doesn't the New York Times tell us who among its correspondents in occupied Palestine does not have a son or daughhter serving in the Israeli occupation army.

I am back: blog is back

So I was in Beirut for a closed workshop on ISIS and my visit coincided with the trash strike.  So I, the sensitive and delicate creature, was severly affected and was clearly food poisoned there.  All what you hear about the new rules for food preparation is untrue.  I bought a labne container from the state-run COOP in Hamra and the next day it was rotten.  Trash was everywhere.  I also probably should not have purchased dairy desserts from one of my favorite places, Zaatarwazeit.  

PS It hit me. This has been the longest absence from the blog ever since it was launched some 12 years ago this summer.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Huffington Post Arabic: Scandalous

Huffington Post Arabic is managed by the former manager of Aljazeera: so the sensibilities are reflective of the Qatari regime and its allies. It is basically Ikhwan "light".  And Queen Rania? Really? Arab youth are eager to read what Western consultants have written for her?  And the Syrian opposition writer, Hakam Al-Baba is a featured blogger? This sectarian agitator who believes that there should be no assurances to minorities in Syria after the Saudi-Qatari victory there? This is a guy who faulted Al-Julani for his moderation. This is a guy who has defended the worst Jihadi groups in Syria. Welcome to the liberation Huffington Post in Arabic.  

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Traveling

I am traveling within the galaxy. Blogging will be sporadic. 

Saturday, July 25, 2015

It is not a big story if it involves Israel

"U.S. authorities arrested four people in Israel and Florida Tuesday, some of whom are believed to be tied to computer hacks of JPMorgan Chase and other financial institutions." "To do this, used bank and brokerage accounts that were opened "using aliases, false and fraudulent passports, and other false identification," the indictment said."

Friday, July 24, 2015

Saudi-Israeli alliance

"Mr Netanyahu has alluded to Saudi concerns in his repeated denunciations of the deal, which he amplified on Wednesday in a speech to the Knesset,"


 

What does UK do for democracy in the Middle East?

"Eleven British personnel are “providing mentoring and advice” to the Saudi National Guard, which is a special arm of the Gulf state’s forces that is tasked with protecting the royal family from potential crises including coups."

Turkish government and Al-Qa`idah

"There is no doubt that ability to move backwards and forwards across the 550-mile long Syrian-Turkish border has been crucial to the growth of the jihadi movements in Syria since 2011. The thousands of foreign volunteers who have flooded into Syria have almost all come from Turkey. Even those unable to speak Turkish or Arabic have had little difficulty in making their way across. In many respects, Turkey has provided a safe sanctuary for Isis and Jabhat al-Nusra, playing a similar role as Pakistan does in support of providing safe haven for the Taliban in Afghanistan." "A Syrian rebel offensive led by Jabhat al-Nusra was allegedly masterminded from an operational headquarters inside Turkey and was the outcome of a closer understanding between Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar." (thanks Amir)

Omar Sharif and Universal Fame

My weekly article in Al-Akhbar: "Omar Sharif and Universal Fame: Between East and West".

Jamal Khashuqji and the Saudi project in the region

Since this propagandist of various Saudi princes is often cited in Western media as an independent Arab voice, I thought I would share this characterization of his about the differences between the Iranian and Saudi projects in the region:
"Either us with our participatory democratic project which includes all, and would build our plurastic Yemen and Syria, or them iwth their narrow sectarian project".    If you were reading this would you not think it is a joke?
هناك، فلا يخف ضغطنا إلا أن نرى منهم استجابة لهذا المشروع، أما غير ذلك فهو الاستمرار في المواجهة الكبرى التي لا تحتمل أنصاف الحلول، فإما نحن بمشروعنا الديموقراطي التشاركي الذي يستوعب الجميع، وبناء شامنا ويمننا التعددي، وإما هم بمشروعهم الطائفي الضيق.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

This is an actual headline in the news site of the TV station of King Fahd's brother-in-law, Al-Arabiyyah

"Security is the UAE’s key to freedom". (thanks Basim)

Watching Saudi war and destruction from atop his roof in Yemen

The 103rd beheading in Saudi Arabia for this year alone

This is the 103rd beheading in Saudi Arabia for this year. For some reason, Western media treat Saudi regime beheading as being more civilized and humane than ISIS beheading.

Who are the officials in Yemen? They are the puppets in Saudi Arabia

"Shiite rebels and their allies in Yemen randomly shelled a town outside Aden on Sunday after losing control of some of the port city’s neighborhoods, killing at least 45 people and wounding 120, officials said."  This is hilarious when they attribute information to "officials in Yemen", as if there is a state in Yemen which is above the social and political conflict. THe government in Yemen of which this correspondent speaks is the Hadi Mansur regime.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

John Kerry on why his Gulf Arab allies are superior to Iran

"Iran's military budget is $15 billion, while Gulf states spend $130 billion annually".

ميزانية إيران العسكرية 15 مليار دولار، ودول الخليج تصرف 130 مليار دولار سنوية

McDonald's in Tehran, again

From Fred: "As I constant and devoted visitor to your blog, I feel impelled to offer a slight correct to your post on the projected opening of a McDonald’s franchise in Tehran.

Actually, several years ago—in the early days of S. Mohammad Khatami’s government—a McDonald’s franchise was to be opened at a choice location in North Tehran, where the demographics and socio-political outlook of the population would almost certainly guarantee success.

But just before opening day, the restaurant was surrounded by a very large and militant demonstration of « students » who vowed to block the enterprise. To no one’s surprise, they were successful and the project evaporated.

How do I know this? I was in Tehran at the time."

"Gay hanging in Iran: Atrocities and impersonations"

 "Why does it matter? Because LGBT Iranians shouldn’t be exploited for propaganda. They lead lives seamed by danger, distinguished by courage; they deserve better than to be backgammon pieces, passive tokens stacked and shifted in a great-power political game. LGBT people should speak in their own voices, be masters and heroes of their own lives. That is what the liberation struggle is about.

The fact that nobody — not Tatchell, not Ben Weinthal, not Gay Star News — bothered to ask LGBT Iranian activists or groups what the truth was, or whether they wanted a demonstration, is appalling. But it’s typical. The story of Western engagement with LGBT rights in Iran has been one of occupation and ventriloquism, not freedom. It’s long past time for the sick game to stop."

"How US/UK media circulate disinformation all over the world"

"That the New York Times mindlessly disseminates claims from anonymous officials with great regularity is, at this point, too well-documented to require much discussion. But it is worth observing how damaging it continues to be, because, shockingly, all sorts of self-identified “journalists” — both within the paper and outside of it — continue to equate un-verified assertions from government officials as Proven Truth, even when these officials are too cowardly to attach their names to these claims, as long as papers such as the NYT launder them." "All anyone in government has to do is whisper something in its journalists’ ears, demand anonymity for it, and instruct them to print it. Then they obey. Then other journalists treat it as Truth. Then it becomes fact, all over the world."

British PM's messages to Muslims

"Saudi Arabia is another case in point. Here is a state which doesn’t know the meaning of free speech, which beheads its citizens, tolerates forced marriages, defines political opposition as terrorism, and arranges the persecution of homosexuals (last year a Saudi man was sentenced to three years in jail and 450 lashes after he was caught using Twitter to arrange dates with other men: a married man found engaging in homosexual acts can be stoned to death). Yet David Cameron treats the Saudi Arabia as one of our closest allies." "The contradiction between the prime minister’s support for democracy in Britain and dictators in the Middle East is very dangerous."

Angry residents of a small Texan town have threatened to put pigs’ heads on poles and pour the blood onto land which has been earmarked for a Muslim cemetery

"Angry residents of a small Texan town have threatened to put pigs’ heads on poles and pour the blood onto land which has been earmarked for a Muslim cemetery. The latest manifestation of anti-Islamic sentiment in America surrounds a small plot of undeveloped land 35 miles north-east of Dallas." (thanks Amir)