Sunday, November 29, 2015

American and other mercenaries in the service of Gulf regimes

"The Emirates had a brigade of 1,800 soldiers from Latin America which provided 450 troops now arriving in Yemen. It seems there are also going to be hundreds of other foreign mercenaries — Sudanese and Eritrean soldiers — brought into Yemen. These can be viewed as a second generation of foreign mercenaries hired by the countries of the Arabian Peninsula. In the first generation, still powerful, in 1975 Saudi Arabia brought in Vinnell Corporation, an American defense contractor, to train the “Saudi Arabian National Guard.” "The little-known Vinnell is now owned by Northrop Grumman."

UK could be prosecuted for war crimes in Yemen

"Britain is at risk of being prosecuted for war crimes because of growing evidence that missiles sold to Saudi Arabia have been used against civilian targets in Yemen’s brutal civil war, Foreign Office lawyers and diplomats have warned." "Most of Saudi’s weapons are supplied by the United States. With help from the UK, the US is also offering logistical support, airborne refuelling, with a specialist Pentagon-approved team providing intelligence on targeting."

Boko Haram and Saudi regime

From a reader: ""A Boko Haram suicide bomber has killed at least 21 people after blowing himself up among crowds at a Shia Muslim procession outside the city of Kano, Nigeria." "Boko Haram, whose name translates to "Western education is forbidden" recently overtook Isis as the world's deadliest terror organisation. The terror group has pledged allegiance to Isis."

"Boko Haram appears to have a “diplomatic” presence in Saudi Arabia, in addition to other militant connections." "Boko Haram also has a deeper history of involvement in Saudi Arabia: Muhammad Yusuf found refuge in Saudi Arabia to escape a Nigerian security forces crackdown in 2004; Boko Haram has reportedly received funding with the help of AQIM from organizations in the United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia; and Boko Haram’s spokesman claimed that Boko Haram leaders met with al-Qa`ida in Saudi Arabia during the lesser hajj (umra) in August 2011.[27] More recently, the leader of a Boko Haram cell that was responsible for the November 25, 2012, attack on a church inside a military barracks in Jaji, Kaduna, was in Saudi Arabia during the months prior to the attack."

How ISIS sells Syria's oil to Turkey, then Israel

"IS sells Iraqi and Syrian oil for a very low price to Kurdish and Turkish smuggling networks and mafias, who label it and sell it on as barrels from the Kurdistan Regional Government. It is then most frequently transported from Turkey to Israel, via knowing or unknowing middlemen, according to al-Araby's investigation."

ISIS and its inspiration

Who are the Arab people? Ask the Guardian

Notice that all those who are interviewed to speak on behalf of Arab people are advocates of Gulf regimes.  

HRW on Palestine

a word from its director.  As if there is no Israeli discrimination in Areas A and B and in 1948 Palestine.

Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth)
West Bank's huge "Area C" is where Israel's discrimination against Palestinians prevails.

Pro-GCC regime propaganda in Newsweek

Unbelievable article.  This Lebanese pro-Gulf regimes writer talks about the sons of royals as if they are really fighting in Yemen and as if the mercenary armies are not the ones who are actually doing the fighting and the dying.

How does she want to liberate the women of Iraq?

"she raised her concerns about gender equality with American and British diplomats, she recalled being told to take it up with tribal leaders."  And who is a better guardian of Arab women than American and British diplomats.

Who is Hugh Naylor's expert on Iran?

"an Iran expert at the ­Washington-based Foundation for Defense of Democracies.". Go no further.  This is like going to the anti-Semitic Institute for Historical Review for expert opinion on Israel matters.

Moshe Dayan no rape

From James: "Moshe Dayan on Zionism as Rape (and blaming Bedouins for it)
“‘The situation between us is like the complex relationship between a Bedouin man and the young girl he has taken against her wishes,’ Dayan told the Palestinian poet Fadwa Tukan. ‘But when their children are born, they will see the man as their father and the woman as their mother. The initial act will mean nothing to them. You Palestinians, as a nation, do not want us today, but we will change your attitude by imposing our presence upon you” In Tom Segev, 1967: Israel, the War, and the Year That Transformed the Middle East (New York: Metropolitan Books, Henry Holt and Company, 2005), quoting from Shlomo Gazit, Sudden Trapped: 30 Years of Israeli Policy in the Territories (in Hebrew) (Tel Aviv: Zmora-Bitan, 1999), p. 218."

Does the US Huffington Post know that the Arabic Huffington Post is a crude and vulgar outlet of Qatari regime propaganda?

Yesterday, the headline was: "A solidarity campaign with Turkey" in the face of Russian sanctions. 

The Saudi royal idiots don't know (or even care) that a US president can't keep the gifts

"Saudi king showered Obamas with $1.3 million in gifts in 2014"

US Economic Aid in Egypt

I highly recommend Dina Jadallah's US Economic Aid in Egypt: Democratization and Reform in the Middle East.  I think that it offers a radical alternative to the study of US foreign policy in the Middle East region.

Anti-ISIS coalition

Kim Ghattas on "radical Islam"

Ghattas, a March 14 Lebanese journalist who has written a hagiography of Hillary Clinton, found a solution to the ISIS problem: "Hassan believes that the best way to delegitimize the organization is to actually call it by its chosen name, “The Islamic State,” and describe its state as a caliphate."  Wow. Why didn't people come up with that idea before? I am sure that it would end its rule.  And Ghattas says that it should be no problem if we allow the Republican rightist bigots to dominate the terminology about Jihadi terrorist groups because--according to her--Arabs refer to ISIS and the likes as "Islam mutatarrif."  Of course, this is not true. But hey: she has consulted with other March 14 people, including a fellow at the Rafiq Hariri Center, and they agreed with her. Case closed.  I would like her make that argument about referring to Israeli criminals and terrorists with references to Judaism.  Would she dare?  Would she dare talk about "radical Judaism"?  Of course, I am opposed to blaming Judaism for crimes of individual Jews, or blaming Islam for crimes of individual Muslims.

Syriza's U-turn on Israel is now complete

"During a visit to Israel in July, Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias even said that Greeks needed to "learn to love Israel" and disgracefully called Israel part of a "line of stability" in the region – something that will some as news to the friends and relatives of those 551 Palestinian children murdered by Israeli during its summer 2014 war against the civilian population of the Gaza Strip.
This was a climb-down by the Syriza-led government on previously decent Syriza policy, much as it has made fundamental reversals of policy in domestic economic matters.
But Syriza as a leftist movement put some distance between itself and its government's contacts with Israel: Defence Minister Panos Kammenos was from the Independent Greeks (a right-wing coalition partner) and Kotzias is an independent.
Or it did put such distance until this week. As of now, the Syriza U-turn on Israel is complete."  I always tell people: never pin your hopes on a Western leftist party. They will sure disappoint you.

Will we screen them? White Americans are the biggest terror threat in the United States

"According to the New America Foundation, white Americans are the biggest terror threat in the United States — bigger even than Muslim extremists. The Washington-based research organization did a review of “terror” attacks on US soil since Sept. 11, 2001, and found that most of them were carried out by radical anti-government groups or white supremacists. Surprised? You might be. Almost twice as many people have died in attacks by right-wing groups in America than have died in attacks by Muslim extremists. Of the 26 attacks since 9/11 that New America defined as terror, 19 were carried out by non-Muslims. Scared? You should be."

How Western governments forgave the Sudanese dictator because he allowed himself to be bought off by Saudi regime

"The International Criminal Court wants to try Bashir for his alleged war crimes, so Sudan’s participation in the US-sponsored coalition has raised eyebrows among human rights activists in the West." "Unquestionably, the Obama administration faces a dilemma. It has been led into a de facto military partnership with a regime it has punished by means of economic sanctions and an arms embargo for its human rights abuses, including genocide and state-sponsored terrorism." "The price Sudan pays for this financial lifeline is participation in Yemen’s escalating civil war." (thanks Amir)

The futility of those international polls

Look at those results for example.  Look at the Middle East section and compare Lebanon's answers to other Arab countries. It is clear that they did not understand the question (or it was not translated to them) as the headline states.  I think that they are answering a different question: of whether they have those democratic rights in their present-day countries now.  

Saturday, November 28, 2015

The future of college education in Lebanon and the Arab world

My weekly article in Al-Akhbar: "The Future of College Education in Lebanon and the Arab world".

What do you say about a state that was founded on theft and occupation?

"13 Delicacies That Aren’t Israeli".  Circulate, damn it.

It is Palestine, damn it, not "Israel".

Oraib Toukhly Sukkar
April 7, 2014Edited
My dad received his U.S. passport in the mail, with place of birth stating "Israel". He placed the passport back in the envelope, returned it to the passport agency with a sticky note saying: "I was born in the state of Palestine, the city of Jerusalem in 1941, there was no Israel then, the state of Israel occupied my home land in 1948. Kindly reinstate my correct identity." 2 weeks later, passport corrected, Palestine reinstated, no questions asked.
My ultimate respect to the system and hats off to baba !!

Friday, November 27, 2015

ISIS is more popular in states allied with the US, Israel & Saudi Arabia

"Isis is almost universally detested across the Middle East, Asia and Africa, even in Muslim-majority countries, a new poll has shown." "In Lebanon, where Isis’ recent bombing in Beirut killed 43 people, 99 per cent of respondents said they had a “very unfavourable” opinion of the group, while 94 per cent of Israelis and 89 per cent of Jordanians felt the same." (thanks Amir)

Israel's favorite French Imam offers condolences to Charlie

"L'imam Charlghoumi rend hommage à "Charles" (Charlie Hebdo)" (thanks Jerome)

It is official: the reason why US bombed the hell out of a hospital in Kunduz is that US Special Forces "were fatigued"

"He said another contributing factor was that the Special Forces members in Kunduz had been fighting continuously for days and were fatigued."  This is true and makes sense.  I heard that when troops are fatigued they bomb the hell out of hospitals.  

Jodi Rudoren discovers "Israeli food": she is impressed

How could the correspondent of the paper not know that this dish is an old Lebanese-Syrian dish which my home city of Tyre specialized in long before the Zionist entity was even formed?  "He offers a finely chopped salad, excellent thin fries and a dish called msabbaha, where chickpeas swim in tahini."  But those who claim that Palestine was a "land without a people" can easily claim that Musabbaha was invented by an Israeli chef.

Committee for the "Development of Conscience" in Egypt

Tyrant Sisi just formed a Committee for the Development of Conscience".

Jordanian royal convoy--kid you not

Behind ISIS lines: what Western correspondents in Beirut would not report

There was an operation by Hizbollah commandos behind ISIS enemy lines to kill the mastermind of the bombing in Burj Barajnah.  No Western media reported on this,  Natürlich.

Have you ever wondered how the Jordanian royal convoy is prepared?

I have wondered for years but this "liberal" Jordanian newspaper, Al-Ghad, provides the crucial answers. (thanks L.)

This achievement is destined to immortalize Lebanon

Lebanese flags made from garlic, parsley, and onions.  Never underestimate the scientific achievements of the Lebanese people.

What US bombs did to Kobani

The US ambassador in Lebanon (Richard Jones): from 1996

Can you imagine a Lebanese ambassador in US sitting like this with the assistant of the deputy assistant of the secretary of the assistant secretary of State? If that happened, the ambassador would wind up in Guantanamo.

Thursday, November 26, 2015


He earned all his medals on the battlefield

He changes outfits just like Saddam (remember that he was best friends with Udayy Saddam Husayn).

US-EU-Saudi war on Yemeni people

"American planes began taking off in support of the campaign on April 5, less than two weeks after the bombs started falling in Yemen in late March. As of Nov. 13, U.S. tankers have flown 471 refueling sorties to top off the tanks of coalition warplanes 2,443 times, according to numbers provided by the Defense Department. The American flights have totaled approximately 3,926 flying hours while delivering over 17 million lbs. of fuel. The mostly American-made fighter planes guided by Arab pilots are also primarily dropping American-made munitions, bolstered recently by the $1.29 billion in weaponry Washington agreed to sell Saudi Arabia. The sale includes 22,000 bombs, featuring 1,000 laser guided bombs, and over 5,000 “kits” that can transform older bombs into GPS-guided bombs."

Canada bombs Iraqi dairy plant killing 10 workers

"Canada's military is facing fresh allegations its bombs may have killed civilians in northern Iraq, CBC News has learned. According to local Iraqi media reports, 10 civilian workers were allegedly killed and as many as 20 others injured after an airstrike by Canadian warplanes last week in Mosul." "The allegations follow a recent fifth estate investigation that raised questions about how diligently the Canadian military and coalition forces are investigating civilian casualty reports in Iraq and Syria."

cheering Sep. 11? "What struck Maria were the expressions on the [Israeli] men's faces. "They were like happy, you know"

"Millions saw the horrific images of the World Trade Center attacks, and those who saw them won't forget them. But a New Jersey homemaker saw something that morning that prompted an investigation into five young Israelis and their possible connection to Israeli intelligence." "The men were taking video or photos of themselves with the World Trade Center burning in the background, she said. What struck Maria were the expressions on the men's faces. "They were like happy, you know … They didn't look shocked to me. I thought it was very strange," she said."

Case of Gaza family killed in their sleep taken to ICC

" “On 20 August 2014 at 4:45am, Israel attacked our home in Deir al-Balah whilst my family was fast asleep. My son and two stepsons were killed in the attack, as well as my nine-months pregnant daughter-in-law and her three children,” al-Louh says in a statement from Al-Haq, whose director Shawan Jabarin handed the file to Bensouda in The Hague." "Palestinian human rights defenders and Israel’s victims hope that the evidence they handed Bensouda today will leave the court no excuse not to pursue justice for Israel’s victims in Gaza."

Saudi Salafist preachers of Belgium

"a WikiLeaks cable revealed that a staff member of the Saudi embassy in Belgium was expelled years ago over his active role in spreading the extreme so-called Takfiri dogma."

Turkish opinion of Saudi Arabia

Historical irony: "German Jewish Leader Fears Anti-Semitic Syrian Refugees"

"President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany Josef Schuster fears the fact that many of the refugees seeking asylum in Germany come from countries hostile to Israel might bolster anti-Semitic views among the Arab community, EJP reported.
Speaking to Welt am Sonntag, Schuster said that when he shared his trepidation in a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her staff, it resulted in an awkward silence, following which Merkel responded: “We must address that.”
According to Schuster, many German Jews share his fears, “and I share this feeling and therefore see a need to integrate the refugees in our community of values as soon as possible.”" Imagine if during the Cold War an Arab were to express fears that Jewish refugees from the Soviet Union may hold anti-Arab views.  Imagine the uproar.


From Mick: "There is only one nation that would pronounce Humeimim Airfield Khmeimim...and it isn't an Arab one. At least they didn't say they used Khezbollah as a source.
"Russia has carried out more than 4,000 airstrikes since the beginning of its intervention in Syria, using a force of modern and modified Soviet-era aircraft. Russia has at least 32 fixed-wing aircraft and 16 helicopters at the Khmeimim air base near Latakia, an Assad stronghold on the Mediterranean Sea just 30 miles from the Turkish border."

What US bombings have done to Kobane