Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 1848 (since 2011-07-30 17:54:17)

born part Arab part Scots/Irish, worked in training ulema for the european environment/ journalist broadcaster for many years working mainly for bbc. From a faction of euro-islam much favored by the establishment, writer etc nothing really of interest may as well move along.

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  • Gaza vs. Israel: The legitimate and illegitimate use of violence in the Western discourse
    • Misspelled Phan's name damn sorry.

      Oddly in Foresome's piece is the claim that Hamas brag about targeting civilians, would a link be forthcoming because of course they also deny it.

      The targeting of areas near Jerusalem: there were some comments here over the last few days which if not racist were just thoroughly Eurocentric, might i recommend "Eurocentrism" and "The Liberal Virus" by Samir Amin, francophone Egyptian scholar, there is a misconception in the west that this is a conflict between Israel and Palestine but from the Palestinian perspective it is far more complex, the Palestinians are not just confronting the Zionist state but virtually all the regional Arab states and the global would be Hegemon, the rockets aimed towards Jerusalem are targeted as much at Cairo, Riyadh, Dubai and Washington etc as they are at Jerusalem, the idea that Palestinians are served by cultivating the good opinion of the west is absurd, hence they have detached their struggle from the politics imposed on them by the west, having sued for peace on the most humiliating terms and been rebuffed, not by a recalcitrant Israel alone, but by the western powers they have a new political and military strategy, which places pressure on the Arab regimes through their populations, it may be shocking to outsiders but having exhausted all avenues to a solution, legal, political including virtual surrender, they are embarking on a new phase of struggle, the military threat to the vicinity of Jerusalem will send a clear message to the condominium of Arab0-Israeli political authorities in the region that some short term solution, ie the ending of the embargo and the withdrawal of Egypt from the coalition of the siege and strangulation is preferable to escalation, Israel can slaughter, sure but they will anyway, the west can condemn sure, but they will any way, the Arab regimes however having no military option against Hamas and fearful of their restless populations will exert diplomatic pressure on both the Israelis and Americans, if it is effective it may release Gaza for some time, the Palestinians having nothing to lose are playing what cards they have in a game whose rules are determined by their enemies, relying on outside forces to suddenly become impressed by Palestinian quiescence and passivity has already been tried it doesn't work and is not sustainable by deeply pressurized population.

      Just to give a bit of context for those whose fake moralism about targeting civilians is their primary concern Info clearing has a slew of articles up Nat Hentoff's is remarkable for giving an insight in to what life is like for the people in Waziristan right now, constant buzzing of killer drones above them, people unsafe any where doing anything, perhaps further undermining the basis of the moral and intellectual superiority that many westerners seem to enjoy when regarding the politics of Palestinian liberation, failing to grasp the inter-Arab dynamic is a key element in this, the Arab regimes, including Egypt, loathe the Palestinian resistance, fearful of its ramifications in their own spheres.

      http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article33051.htm

    • "it is folly to expect the victim to refrain from a tactic which the aggressor uses with impunity"

      its an old act, Mouin Rabbani below deals with it with Nyugen like thoroughness

      "In the years since 2000, HRW pursued a consistent – and consistently effective – formula: criticize Israel, but condemn the Palestinians. Challenge the legality of an Israeli aerial bombardment, preferably in polite, technical terms, and vociferously denounce the Palestinian suicide bomber in unambiguous language – especially when raising questions about the latest Israeli atrocity. In HRW publications, explicit condemnations and accusations of war crimes were almost exclusively directed against Palestinians. Israeli was considered to have the right to [defend the Zionist state], but Palestinians were for all intents and purposes denied the right to resist Israel."

      Rabbani on HRW and Palestine

  • Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld: 'If they dare to strike Tel Aviv... we'll wipe the whole place out'
    • unless of course the Americans have decided to use Egypt to restrict Israels freedom of action, unlikely i would have thought, a little pressure on the region should suit America fine just now.

    • "Are more reporters able to get in through Egypt?" what and embarrass the "Knights riding under the Prophets banner", i would think not, anyone thinking that the new revolutionary government in Egypt isnt fully on board with this slaughter is naive, they have a rhetoric problem perhaps, but we are masters of hand wringing and inaction, the Egyptian army will be watching all passes in to Tahrir Square, ranting about Jews may be acceptable but anyone who threatens the American dole so loved by the army will soon be dealt with by the latter day Mamluks. Gains for the Palestinians threaten the delicate balance of forces in the rentier states, popular forces must be defeated everywhere or who knows what might happen ( even Iran agreed on this and thus sent in the Badr Brigades in Iraq to stifle a popular uprising, remember Muqtada) if there is the chaos of real liberation, American fiat currency will not be available to the heroes of liberated Egypt.

  • Exile and the Prophetic: The Jewish community’s entire life is bound up with war
    • avoid via bland generalization and non-sequiturs,

      "Still, we have to broaden the question beyond Israel. What would Judaism and Jewish life look like if peace broke out?" er broaden? isnt this a narrowing, back to vexed question of what this slaughter oppression and injustice mean to the Perpetrators and their many accomplices, tell me how do you feel about it? hope its not too upsetting, not one mention of the victims.

      the Holocaust receding, while Gaza burns I do wonder how are Jews feeling, ok i hope and what this means for the them, yet again the Holocaust referenced as an explanation for inhumanity, it is irrelevant to the current situation, the post traumatic psychology of the Jews provides no rationale for this bestiality. If the Holocaust had any value quite the opposite in fact.

      Militarism? in case you hadnt noticed these are not "wars" if so where is the opposing army? This a colonial massacre against the all but defenseless, Sparta at least fought real wars, not against comprador ersatz armies and citizen militias , this is more like a Jefferey Dahmer state gone on an insane killing spree, when war comes Israel will realize they have never fought wars, you dignify the appalling inhumane arrogance of the current Israeli polling booth massacre as war, why?

      targeted assassinations are not very accurate, eh? dont you mean murder from the air and they are tolerably accurate, as if that was the issue. His name was Jabari.

      Militarism or whatever one could call the attitudes of the Jewish/Israeli community are given ample voice in your pointless intervention, oh sorry its all about you, how silly of me, how utterly depressing.

      As Movado sings on alliancefilife's "Destroy Gaza" "The peace treaty done, the bloodclat war start again"

      "Now that the Holocaust is receding, we are left with only power. Power is our guide. However, we know that power is limited."
      you mean many are no longer buying this rationalization, how many Ugandans could be slaughtered in the name of the Holocaust, its about as relevant a question as how many Palestinian and Arab societies can be despoiled and held in thrall and burned down, "receding" or turning in to a toxic mess whose contagion is going to carry off many, many people, you seem mostly concerned that as few as possible of them be Jews, why, are we not your brothers and sisters of equal value and if not what is the value in these Jews, whose welfare, mood and culture seems your only concern?

      You have no answer, defeat is going to be the only salvation.
      The imperium is turning the whole region in to a charnel house, while various voices both Jewish and Muslim, complicit and mouthing revolting and shallow perversions of their own cultural heritage, semitogedden, white people must be laughing at our insane barbarity, or those who dont justifiably hold us all in contempt must be appalled.

      Rabbi's and the Ulema, what are they good for?

      "Without the Holocaust as backdrop, Israel is just hanging out there on its abuse of power limb." are you mad Marc, when one unpacks this statement what is one left with, how did you manage to become so inhuman. "Backdrop" then "abuse of power", anodyne phrases dont conceal the horror.

      And so on to victory and re-election, the "war" is between Israeli politicians, the backdrop is Gaza not the Holocaust. Which i hope i have mentioned a sufficient number of times to secure my place amongst the elect. To whom are you speaking?

  • Day Two of Israeli Assault on Gaza: 19 killed in Gaza, including 7 children, over 150 injured; 3 Israelis killed near Ashkelon
    • "ideally not for too long to slow down jihad. To believe that a proven terrorist could bring about positive change in the Middle East is absurd." you can not see how absurd this argument is, how could an outlaw make any positive contribution to peace, if you would obey the law all would be well no one is asking any more than their legal rights, so long as they are accounted as bearing those rights. as if you didn't know, vile man, liar, you have the audacity to claim a place amongst civilized people referencing the violence that your illegality has occasioned as an indictment against the resistant victims, give them drones and f16 then as per ponti corvo are all white people idiots?

  • Soundtrack for #GazaUnderAttack
  • A bad day in Nabi Saleh
    • also Nabi Saleh, the Prophet Saleh (meaning Pious) an ancient Arabian prophet who preached to the people of Thamud they told him to STFU, God in his wisdom obliterated their impious asses, often mentioned with 'Ad, they carved house out of living rock and are symbol in Quranic terms of the transitoriness of worldly power. They messed with Gods camel, fools. from wiki...

      "The Qur'an mentions Thamud in Sura Al-A'raf in the context of several prophets who warned their people of coming judgement. Verse 74 says of Thamud, "Ye build for yourselves palaces and castles in (open) plains, and carve out homes in the mountains".[5] This could refer to the rock-cut tombs of Mada'in Saleh (the Cities of Saleh)

      In the Qur'an, ʿĀd and Thamud are generally mentioned together as a matter of context.[citation needed] The verses advise Thamud to take warning from the destruction of ʿĀd.

      To the Thamud people (We sent) Salih, one of their own brethren: He said: "O my people! worship Allah: ye have no other god but Him. Now hath come unto you a clear (Sign) from your Lord! This she-camel of Allah is a Sign unto you: So leave her to graze in Allah's earth, and let her come to no harm, or ye shall be seized with a grievous punishment.
      "And remember how He made you inheritors after the 'Ad people and gave you habitations in the land: ye build for yourselves palaces and castles in (open) plains, and carve out homes in the mountains; so bring to remembrance the benefits (ye have received) from Allah, and refrain from evil and mischief on the earth."
      —Qur'an, Sura 7 (Al-A'raf), ayat 73-74[6]

      This verse suggests some kind of relationship between ʿĀd and Thamud, and ʿĀd may even have been a part of Thamud's history and culture. Just as Nuh's (Noah) people were seen as the ancestors of ʿĀd, it seems ʿĀd were seen in a similar relation to Thamud.

      The ʿĀd were a people living in southern Arabia. Some remains of Thamud were found in the region where ʿĀd had lived, especially around the region where capital city of the Hadramites, the descendants of ʿĀd, stood.[citation needed]

      A bit further on from the passage quoted above, the Qur'an says,

      Then they ham-strung the she-camel, and insolently defied the order of their Lord, saying: "O Salih! bring about thy threats, if thou art a messenger (of Allah)!"
      So the earthquake took them unawares, and they lay prostrate in their homes in the morning!
      —Qur'an, Sura 7 (Al-A'raf), ayat 77-78[7]

      In Sura Al-Qamar it says " For We sent against them a single Mighty Blast, and they became like the dry stubble used by one who pens cattle."[8]"

    • "Nobody wants to be disowned, and thrown on the mercy of chancery."

      mooser I dont know what to say, that there is my life and chancery has a its raffish attractions, belonging is not all its cracked up to be imho.

    • thanks marc.b,

      as to the film yeah, its very instructive, here are the teeming masses currently being subjugated by the speculator empire, storming the citadel of pretty whiteness isnt Brad gorgeous, a bit lady-boy but each to their own, the title put me in mind of Costa-Gavras' great classic Z ( which stands for "he lives", so more zombie references) based on the Lambrentis (sp?) assassination.

      As to my reactions to the above piece, leaving aside moral assessments and personal characterizations neither of which are either of interest or germane, there are two narratives here sitting somewhat uncomfortably with each other, the record of a peoples war waged against a ruthless colonizing army, and a series of non-sequiturs about the theatrical nature of this confrontation and the feelings and motives of the participants, like all resistance there is a theatrical element but this does not render it either unreal or any less a peoples war, waged with both skill and courage, lets recall that despite its predictable limitations it was the violence of the 2nd intifada, instigated by Israel since that is the suit where her advantage lies, that compelled Israel to admit the PLO back in to Palestine, having driven it to Tunisia, an astonishing defeat for key Israeli objectives the consequences of which are slowly playing out in the Imperiums own institutions much to Israels disadvantage.

      The saving of the "Jewish Soul", laudable though that maybe, will hardly be served by downplaying the reality of this confrontation, the IDF really does mean to harm these people, those little boys and young men are extraordinarily brave clear sighted and skilled, the form of resistance they have developed is being studied everywhere from Karachi to Acheh, from Lhasa to Capetown.

      The people of Nabi Saleh, and their like are the saviors of the Jewish Soul, whatever that is, and that little town should be more sacred to Jewish sensibilities than a thousand faux temples.

      note how one trollish poster has established a check point on this very thread and violated Ms. Deger, and the boring monomania they resort to in trying to ascribe the motive of murder to the resistance, in that context its worth remembering that it is the colonizer who believes in killing, degrading, imprisoning, stealing, literally shitting upon as cherished elements of their armoury, and that these youth are facing real violence which has a real intent to kill and maim, only restrained by the political limitations that Palestinians have imposed on the Israeli aggressors.
      You know about 20 Tibetans have this week self immolated in protest at Chinese policies, to no great effect, speaking to a Tibetan friend last night she remarked "we need an Intifada, but we dont know how to mount one", I will tell her to check the methods of Nabi Saleh.
      so Tashi Delek and Kale Phe.

    • interesting ritzl thanks.

      edit: just to say obviously my own prejudices occlude my vision, not really having a coherent view point. so thanks, also re the sudan comment, it is a key point in mental practices associated with compassion that it is always important to focus on one real person rather than a mass of theoretical persons an interesting synergism, if that is a word that means what i want it to mean. so thanks again.

    • " A'hd Tamimi was struck by a rubber bullet in the arm and carried, crumpled. She wasn't crying. A journalist came limping after her, hit in the thigh."

      "the soldiers came into town and fired tear gas and rubber bullets at close range."

      " No one is supposed to get really hurt, though people inevitably do"

      "Of course the demonstration is not really nonviolent. The boys throw rocks. symbolic gestures of the right to resist. It feels more than symbolic."

      "I always reflect when I'm in the occupation that if New Yorkers were subjected to these oppressions, we would be up in the hills with guns."

      Do you not experience any kind of cognitive dissonance? "Rubber bullets at close range", "not really non-violent", "inevitably", "more than symbolic", "no one is supposed to really get hurt" eh?, and "up in the hills with guns"=but what of non-violence?

      "Of course Palestinians have tried violent resistance, but they have failed to repulse the occupier and been labeled "terrorist" into the bargain. So in an effort to win the world's good opinion,"

      because those labels just fall from the sky, do they descend upon the soldiers and settlers, who have, i guess, tried non-violence, in their pursuit of international criminality, but been thwarted by their victims?

      good for you though Mr. Weiss, not critical just cant get where you are coming from with some apparently unexamined assumptions, cant really see the point in fleshing it out, this will have to do.

  • 7 Palestinians, including 3 children, killed and 52 injured as Israeli attack on Gaza continues
    • you got one for Japhet? reputed father of the Holy White Nations, it was A.L. Schlosser's search for the Japhetic language family that lead to the discovery of the "Shemitic" languages, which should of course properly, using this taxonomy, be called the "Hamo-Shemitic".

  • Exile and the Prophetic: Forget the 'fiscal cliff' -- could Israel fall off the American political cliff?
    • "Yet it’s worse to be in the political valley on a permanent basis. Tasting the fruits of upper mobility is intoxicating. Everyone should have a taste, even if it eventually turns bitter."

      This is the most offensive piece of nonsense i have read in a long time, because
      a) Upper Mobility, political, social and economic is always the result of injustice, rather than extra-IQ points, or cultural valuing of education, or any other such imponderables, and is always achieved via discrimination, oppression and pillage.
      b)The valley aint so bad, I am as I always manage living in an area currently that is reputed to be dangerous and suffering from manifold social crises, white people with whom i interact always adopt a look of serious concern when my address comes up, and yet this area with its, Abo's, Torrres Straighters, Polynesians, Lebo's, Assyrians and others is remarkable for the qualities of the people, not intoxicated with privilege, they have all the sterling qualities, that i aspire too but can not really accomplish.
      c) to find the taste of "Upward Mobility" sweet you have to be about as shallow and materialistic as it is possible to be, and purblind to boot, if this were prophetic vision I will certainly follow the Jesus of the gospel of Barnabi, "Oh Andrew, if the eye be not guarded it is impossible not to fall headlong into lust", it doesnt turn bitter its bitter from start to finish, even if you are lauded and can fuck everything that moves and receive the salutes of the obsequious . "Upward Mobility" call it what it is domination, injustice and contempt, you can have my turn, i pass. As Muhammad remarked "There will be those who merely learn the science of religious diction and sell their knowledge to Kings and Princes.........but you will get nothing from Kings and Princes save sins to commit." Towards a Jewish Theology of Subjugation, perhaps.

  • Irish Foreign Minister plans to push for EU ban on settlement products
    • i see Jews come from "Yearning", where is that, clearly not in the vicinity of "discerning" judging by your Helen Thomas paragraph, what do you mean?

      you are a cool and subtle satirist assuming that raison d'tetat is similar to raison d'etat =a purely political reason for action on the part of a ruler or government, especially where a departure from openness, justice, or honesty is involved.

      when does yearning become coveting, when you just gotta have that ox? perhaps Marc Ellis could tell us when the fruits of pillage are past their sell by date, though ever so sweet.

      makes me think of Isaiah 33.9:
      "The country grieves and wastes away. Lebanon is ashamed and is decaying. Sharon has become like a wilderness. Bashan and Carmel are shaken." same old samo.

  • Palestinians circulate draft resolution at UN as Barak implores US to help Israel delay bid
  • 'A vision seen in a dream': A leading religious Zionist's 1956 call for the Palestinian refugees to return
    • Yes while i agree that these words do not redeem the Zionists or their project, what could, and knowing nothing of this man save these words, I think it is important to remember that the world has changed, and that many Jews back in the day found themselves in very difficult circumstances, and made poor choices under considerable pressure, not the leaders or the movement as a whole but individuals who may well have regretted. Just to be clear i am disgusted by the trauma meme, deployed as a kind of mitigation.

      Yes there is perhaps an element of empty rhetoric to these words, i have no idea what Radler-Feltman actually did, perhaps he himself never lived up to these ideals, however constrained as we are to deal with what is, and having watched the butchering of Palestine since before '67, i was born in the 50's to a very politicized environment in east Asia, back in anti-colonial times and lived, as child, in newly independent nations themselves recovering from brutal colonial wars, in both Africa and Asia, there is something in what he says, just the simple human kindness, which i feel is a priceless treasure having seen enough of the harsh realities of a disordered world, naivety is not always lacking in wisdom and irrational is not always incorrect.

      Petraeus is not the only man to suffer crucifixion by email, Cyril Ramaphosa, that hero of the anti-Apartheid war, lately become a tycoon, has been caught assuring the Lonmin directors that he would deal savagely with the Marikana miners, striking for a living wage, who he derides as criminals, and that arch traitor Mandela is universally celebrated as a Saint, so perhaps having got used to the thin gruel of Imperialistic utterances and the Hauteur of conquerors i reserve the right to be moved by words that even though perhaps empty are at least kind, which is a big thing to the likes of me, so Lakota me, should you wish too.

    • "We called our war with you, our Arab brothers, the “War of Liberation”. Fancy words – fancy and false. We did not fight a war of liberation, but a war of subjugation. We were free men before the war. In fighting it, we became slaves. Slaves to whom? To the harshest Pharaoh in the world: his majesty Satan himself, the Evil Inclination, selfishness and arrogance, constant gnawing anxiety, fear of a “second round”, a “third round” and so forth, ad infinitum. Our bellowing for the “best weapons ever seen” was not manufactured, but the natural outcome of this state of affairs. The false education we gave our children – our gifts from God – dedicated to bloodshed and Moloch, flowed from the depths of these circumstances."

      compare this profound beautiful rendition of spirituality with the weird stuff posted on some other thread, by w.jones, i am often embarrassed to speak in the name of religion, with good reason, its wonderful to read such words, i happily prostrate before such life giving wisdom, available to all within their very own minds/ hearts, though vastly the inferior of the speaker here quoted, this is how i read scripture, as per the instructions of my many teachers, one could hardly imagine him supporting humanitarian wars or arrogant dominion, may he be blessed may all of us attain such a wise and loving perception. one blood one love infinite diversity.

  • A field trip to the front lines of Area C
    • where is Annie when i need a friend out of Love Annie, my friend, listen to this Bobo ashanti "that day will come", my gratitude is only exceeded by my debt to you, he has much more Jah Jah City and Some Day, And Same Old Story, peace my friend. I cant fully express my gratitude to so many posters here, too many, blessings Hostage, all the Zionists, and Muslims aiman get top marks, I am going home, back to the hills in jamaica respect, Phil man grow up. few more weeks here and then peace the holy land is wherever your foot falls, that Shmuel guy if i was a woman thats the kind of guy i would want to marry, peace perfect peace, also quite drunk and other things will no doubt be hunting you all tomorrow, just played a great session in footscray, actually love y'all. the Prophet. He played suncity.

      Capelton the prophet

  • Obama's victory highlights a bad night for the Jewish right
    • "Perhaps Obama looks better on domestic policy? Not really. Obama's deficit commission was what initially established the suicidal dogma that a minimum of $4 trillion must be cut from the U.S. federal debt, (but not by eliminating empire-building and the grotesquely wasteful private medical system, the twin drivers of deficit spending). This was the number proposed by Obama last February 2011 in his annual budget. Huge cuts from Medicare-Medicaid were later agreed to in the August 2011 budget deal, and more cuts are on the way. Obama and Biden have consistently offered hundred of billions of dollars in cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, without asking for a single Republican concession in return. This severe austerity can't help but wreak havoc on ordinary Americans, and Obama well knows it. But he has made a career of sticking it to ordinary people in order to help wealthy people who already have more money than they are willing to productively invest. Meanwhile, U.S. annual spending on war is between $900 billion and one trillion dollars, every penny allegedly helping to "keep the American people safe." Sure.

      For the record, the causes of U.S. deficits and cumulative debt are (1) wars and runaway military spending; (2) the Bush tax cuts, extended by Obama (80 percent of which benefited wealthy investors at a cost to the federal government of $200 to $270 billion a year); (3) the bailouts of banks and corporations; (4) the fiscal stimulus packages of both Bush and Obama - neither of which produced economic recovery; (4) the four years of keeping 25 million American workers unemployed; (5) price gouging by health insurance and service providers.

      Meanwhile, profit margins are at an 80-year high, while real earnings continue to fall for 90 million workers and middle class households."

      http://legalienate.blogspot.com.au/

  • Netanyahu on election eve: Approves 1,200 new settlement homes while promising Israel won't wait for US to attack Iran
    • "it would be simply too much to acknowledge, as former Israeli Prime Minister Begin did 30 years ago, in an uncommon burst of hubris-tinged honesty,"

      Have read links as much as i can but dont see the real explanation for Begins remarks, I may have missed or i may just be wrong but i think I recall that it was part of the debate around the disastrous '82 war and Begin attacked by Labour for starting a war of choice in '82 reminded Labour that Israel had fought many wars of choice previously, and the war was only disaster in the fact that the lamentably slow learners to found at the back of the class in Europe and the USA couldnt process the images of Israeli murderous brutality with the figments that they had been harbouring in their heads about the 'Light unto the Nations' sunk amongst barbarous hordes up until then.
      I thought all things considered that he acquitted himself tolerably well in the Knesset, Labour looked like idiots, recycling daydreams that were too much for an unsentimental terrorist like Begin, his appeal "we must be honest with ourselves" has a timeless quality, not restricted to Israeli's.

  • Revolution and zealotry, a dialogue
    • salafibism made me laugh, yes i know Maududi was somehting of a force outside the politics of 70's Pakistan, its like trying force a foul smell back into the container from which it emanates, pointless, but it was Haq who really destroyed Pakistani politics with what i now realize was the manipulation of a self serving salafibist tendency amongst the feudal Lords, PML and Sharif were the same side of that counterfeit coin, Lords of industry, i think he was a steel magnate or something, really a bit like democrats and republicans operating in a political sphere were the policy options are so narrow as to be indistinguishable the only choice is do you want fries with that or onion rings, anyway didnt God, Darwin and Einstein write the American constitution.

      you know i cant remember who but someone, perhaps Chomsky mentions an experiment by a Sociologist who took selected quotes from the Communist Manifesto and quizzed various groups of Americans about where theses quotes originated and sizable number thought they were from the American Constitution,

      the PakistaniMuslimLeague crowd were some of the most corrupt and vicious people i ever had the displeasure of working with, they severely embarrassed us in a Parliamentary Committee discussion,( not in front of the white people, init, chaaa), and after that we kept them at arms length and worked with a Pakistani member of the house of Lords who seemed able to control these unruly community representatives perhaps it was cultural but they were routinely abusive to my female and junior staff, and utterly craven when challenged, and would then repeat the behavior, it drove me crazy.

    • As you mention Pakistan aiman, not forgetting of course that Maududi was merely the mouldy glove concealing Zia ul-Haq's American sponsored fist, it was Haq who introduced the phony banner of Islam in to Pakistani law and politics with such venomous gusto and thus distorted that nations politics till the present, utilizing the Jama'at as willing co-conspirators, I used to deal with Nawaz Sharif loyalists (PML) during my communal career, I cant think of people I have less regard for, they were just the pits, so that between Sharifs PML and the Jamaat Pakistani politics descended into a protracted farce and also keeping in mind that it was Haq's Pakistani 2nd division troops who slaughtered Palestinian fighters during Black September, the comprador world is a small and dismal world, he was awarded the highest honours by the plucky little king Hussein.

    • also just to complete this display of ineptness, sorry but its quite a gaff,

      " Ho Chi Minh, whose
      politics were remote from Burke's, was asked late in life whether he thought
      the French Revolution had been a success. He replied "It's too soon to tell."

      it was Zhou Enlai, not Ho Chi Minh, ah but they all look alike i suppose, ever heard of him?
      suggest you google it, i think Nixons interpreter, demured and suggested that Zhou meant the 1968 revolution, but there you are misunderstanding and misattribution abound, in this complex world.

    • "Most worrying for the African continent, however, is the forward march of AFRICOM – the US military’s African command – in the wake of the aggression against Libya. It is no coincidence that barely a month after the fall of Tripoli – and in the same month Gaddafi was murdered (October 2011) – the US announced it was sending troops to no less than four more African countries – the Central African Republic, Uganda, South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo. AFRICOM have now announced an unprecedented fourteen major joint military exercises in African countries for 2012. The military re-conquest of Africa is rolling steadily on.

      None of this would have been possible whilst Gaddafi was still in power. As founder of the African Union, its biggest donor, and its one-time elected Chairman, he wielded serious influence on the continent. It was partly thanks to him that the US was forced to establish AFRICOM’s HQ in Stuttgart in Germany when it was established in February 2008, rather than in Africa itself; he offered cash and investments to African governments who rejected US requests for bases. Libya under his leadership had an estimated $150 billion of investments in Africa, and the Libyan proposal, backed with £30billion cash, for an African Union Development Bank would have seriously reduced African financial dependence on the West. In short, Gaddafi’s Libya was the single biggest obstacle to AFRICOM penetration of the continent.

      Now he has gone, AFRICOM is stepping up its work. The invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan showed the West that wars in which their own citizens get killed are not popular; AFRICOM is designed to ensure that in the coming colonial wars against Africa, it will be Africans who do the fighting and dying, not Westerners. The forces of the African Union are to become integrated into AFRICOM under a US-led chain of command. Gaddafi would never have stood for it; that is why he had to go."

      Libya Africa Africom

    • "There is an Islamic principle, which almost all Muslims have obeyed, that decades of tyranny are better than one day of chaos. That is a truly conservative principle; and you can see that it does not work any more..."

      right so some guy told you what almost all Muslims adhere to? weird no reading of Muslim history could possibly support such an assertion as to what almost all Muslims believe, that is certainly a position adhered to by certain members of the Ulema, deeply cautious for humanistic reasons of war and disorder, Fitna.

      but in that distant land of Michigan there is Dr. Muqtedar Khan, who i dont need to agree with or not, thankfully having no responsibility to adhere to what almost all of my bretheren and sisteren may or may not believe, it makes you think though doesnt it Phil, why the constant need to pigeonhole "Muslims", whats the point? are you now despite not knowing much posing as a reformer of Islam, do you think that Islam accounts for what all Muslims do, there is word for that kind of delusion, are you a prophet or what? Perhaps give the good doctor a call, you know where Michigan is, in the Holy Land of America.

      "The presence of this verse in the Quran clearly precludes a complete prohibition of violence. The verse is important because inspite of the enormous significance that the Quran attaches to peace and harmony, it is categorical in its assertion that persecution is worse than killing. There is nothing allegorical in this verse it is clear: persecution is worse than killing (Al-Quran; 2:217). Else where the Quran states: And fight them until persecution is no more (8:39)."

      http://www.ijtihad.org/peace.htm

  • 'Even a single night in jail is enough to give a taste of what it means to be under the total control of some external force' - Chomsky on his recent trip to Gaza
    • ok so its all Abrahams chillun, all the Christians, the Palestinians who are typically descended from Jews, Jews, all the Arabs, remember Ishmael, yes, (call me Ishmael, so anyone who has read Moby Dick as well, they will be the "minority") and as Christians qualify well all the Muslims too, Palestine is going to be very densely populated, thats at least 3.5 billion, think of the traffic jams, i think we should do it, and people say its hard to have a rational discussion about Palestine, because religion clouds the issues. Can I ask why if Christians get in on the strength of Abrahamicness Muslims don't in your proposed solution, it makes me think you havent really thought this through. Also quite a few Muslims are typically of Jewish descent, as are most people in the state of Utah, latter day and all that but still what about it , do they get an extra Palestine for that, how about the Samaritans, they are typically descended from Samaritans, its been proven by genetic science, what does that get them.

      W it puts me in mind of the Pidgin Lords Prayer, not out of any racist contempt, but because there really is something charming about your proposal, its just i dont how to put it, it just brings the effulgence of the vigour and directness of PNG christian worship to mind, even though it seems to be a square cultural item rammed in to a very round milieu. For some reason that Papa belong mipela (my fella =us =we) really moves me. and tru for amen, i mean, amin, i'd live next door to them in Emwas, there is a park there now, Canada park i think.

      Papa bilong mipela, yu stap long heven,
      Mekim nem bilong yu i kmap holi.
      Mekim Kingdom bilong yu i kam.
      Strongim mipela long bihainam laik bilong yu long graun olseam ol i bihainim long heven tu.
      Nau yu ken givim mipela kaikai inap long dispela de.
      Na yu lusim ol rong bilong mipela,
      olsem mipela i lusim ol rong ol man i mekim long mipela.
      Na yu no bringim mipela long traim,
      tasol tekewe mipela long samting nogut.
      Kingdom na strong na biknem i bilong yu tasol oltaim.
      Tru.

      mauler's transliteration:

      Father of us, who stops in heaven.
      Make your name come up holy.
      Make your Kingdom come.
      Make us strong in following your likes on ground and also following all of them in heaven too.
      Now give us bread enough this day.
      Now lose them all wrongs of ours,
      And also we will lose them all wrongs that all men make on us.
      Don't bring upon us trials,
      And take away from us something no good.
      Kingdom and strength and big name are yours all times.
      Amen.

  • Bil'in father prevented from visiting 5-year-old son in Israeli hospital because of activism against settlements
    • yes Obs because Judea, Samaria and Gaza are foreign countries, you guys are a laugh a minute, how did all those foreigners end up in what Israeli tourist maps, school books and vocal supporters of Zionism think is Israel, and Israel rules, despite threadbare denials, the fiendish cunning of orientals no doubt. Wouldnt the more accurate question be has this ever happened to an Israeli settler living in the west bank, i wouldnt hazard a guess, what do you think?

      "Probably never", i love your confidence.

      what is it with compunction and compulsion, has the language evolved with out anyone telling me.

  • Is the 'New York Review of Books' afraid of Islam?
    • Hi aiman, I want to post a reply to your beautiful sentiments but have some duties to perform first

      "The task of today’s Muslim and Jewish thinkers is to undo that damage and usher in a tradition of humanity and compassion for everyone."
      though I am generally unburdened by positive "beliefs" of any kind I could not have said anything better than that, quite so, and the astonishing Rabbi David Israel Weiss would I am sure agree. As in their heart of hearts would everyone, i guess.

      thank you i am very much in your debt.

    • Yes aiman, Maududi, one thing you say that his ideas, led to the Iranian revolution isnt that going a bit far, the overthrow of Mossadegh and the installation of Shah were surely the proximate cause of the Iranian revolution.

      Actually Maududi is a deeply depressing character in the history of modern Islamic thought, to true, also he was not a Scholar whatever else he was; Nadwi on Maududi:

      By Yoginder Sikand, TwoCircles.net

      The late Sayyed Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi (or Ali Miyan as he was also known) was one of the leading Indian ulema of modern times. A noted writer, he headed the famous Nadwat ul-Ulema madrasa in Lucknow from 1961 till his death in 1999. He was associated with several other Indian as well as international Islamic organisations, a mark of the high respect that he was accorded among Muslims all over the world.

      Maulana Nadwi’s wrote extensively on a vast range of subjects, including on Islam and politics. On this issue, his views underwent a gradual process of change and maturation, beginning with his early association with a leading Indian Islamist formation and later making a forceful critique of some crucial aspects of its understanding of Islam. His views in this regard point to the little-known yet rich internal debate among Indian Muslim scholars about the relationship between Islam and politics, particularly on the question of what Islamists describe as an ‘Islamic state’.

      In 1940, Maulana Nadwi came under the influence of Sayyid Maududi, the founder of the principal Indian Islamist outfit, the Jamaat-i Islami. Maududi, along with the Egyptian Syed Qutb, may be said to be among the pioneers of contemporary Islamism. Soon after joining the Jamaat, Maulana Nadwi was put in-charge of its activities in Lucknow. This relationship proved short-lived, however, and he left the Jamaat in 1943. He later wrote that he was disillusioned by the perception that many members of the Jamaat were going to what he called ‘extremes’ in adoring and glorifying Maududi as almost infallible, this bordering on ‘personality worship’. At the same time, he felt that many Jamaat activists believed that they had nothing at all to learn from any other scholars of Islam. He was also concerned with what he saw as a lack of personal piety in Maududi and some leading Jamaat activists and with their criticism of other Muslim groups.

      Maulana Nadwi’s opposition to the Jamaat’s understanding about Islam and politics, which it shared with most other Islamist formations, comes out clearly in his Urdu book Asr-i Hazir Mai Din Ki Tahfim-o-Tashrih (‘Understanding and Explaining Religion in the Contemporary Age’) which he penned in 1978, and which won him, so he says in his introduction to its second edition published in 1980, fierce condemnation from leading members of the Jamaat. Here, Maulana Nadwi takes Maududi to task for having allegedly misinterpreted central Islamic beliefs in order to suit his own political agenda, presenting Islam, he says, as little more than a political programme. Thus, he accuses Maududi of wrongly equating the Islamic duty of ‘establishing religion’ with the setting up of an Islamic state with God as Sovereign and Law Maker. At Maududi’s hands, he says, ‘God’, ‘The Sustainer’, ‘Religion’ and ‘Worship’ have all been reduced to political concepts. In this way, Maududi, Maulana Nadwi says, sought to incorrectly suggest that Islam is simply about political power and that the relationship between God and human beings is only that between an All-Powerful King and His subjects. However, Maulana Nadwi says, this relationship is also one of ‘love’ and ‘realisation of the Truth’, which is far more comprehensive than what Maududi envisages.

      Linked to Maulana Nadwi’s critique of Maududi for having allegedly reduced Islam to a mere political project was his concern that not only was such an approach a distortion of the actual import of the Quran but also that it was impractical, if not dangerous, in the Indian context. Thus, he argued, Maududi’s insistence that to accept the commands of anyone other than God, including of an elected government, was tantamount to shirk, the crime of associating others with God, as this was allegedly akin to ‘worship’, was not in keeping with the teachings of Islam. God, Maulana Nadwi wrote, had, in His wisdom, left several areas of life free for people to decide how they could govern them, within the broad limits set by the Islamic law or shariah, and guided by a concern for social welfare."

      http://twocircles.net/2008may17/nadwi_maududi_traditionalist_maulvi_s_critique_islamism.html

    • I dont think i added much to what you said T with which i broadly i agree, except perhaps that this regions has "problems" which do not relate to the international system, of domination, established by the Bretton Woods institutions, UN etc, here is a bit of non-aligned speech from Nkrumah that summarizes how things look to us Third-worldist dupes, the processes underway in the Arab world are nothing new, many of us have been watching their evolution for our whole lives, in Nu'mans article you can see our insistence on being allowed to articulate our perspective, different perhaps from those whose knowledge of our societies comes from speed reading the latest news in conjunction with some superficial historical texts, its strange that sub-saharan Africa is rarely mentioned these days, and that its striking similarities with what is going on in the Arab world rarely referenced, i think it helps to look at them as whole : here the Pan-Africanists speak,

      Nkrumah wrote that the political economic situation in the world is one in which a tiny minority of the people grower "richer and richer, while the rest grow poorer and poorer." Challenge of the Congo, p. x He further elaborated that the situation required world socialism as it was the only remedy, for "as long as capitalism and imperialism go unchecked there will always be exploitation, and an ever-widening gap between the haves and the have-nots, and all the evils of imperialism and neo-colonialism which breed and sustain wars." Challenge of the Congo, prefice, p. x.
      Kwame Nkrumah

      He also warned against dependence on capitalist global institutions such as the United Nation Organization (UN) and the Bretton Woods institutions such as the IMF and World Bank. Of the UN he reminded us that the UN is the tool of the elite states which control the Security Council and that it was / is "just as reliable an instrument for world order and peace as the Great Powers are prepared to allow it to be." I Speak of Freedom, preface, p xii.

      Which, as in the case of the Congo, the creation of the Zionist terrorist entity, the continuing disguised warfare against states such as Cuba, the more overt wars being prosecuted throughout every region of the world and everything else that plagues humanity, means absolutely no corrective action at all, indeed it means that the capitalist super power and its allies have a free hand to create mayhem and destruction wherever it chooses.

      Thus he emphasized that socialism and true African unity were and are "organic and complementary." Handbook of Revolutionary Warfare Warfare, p. 28

      This is his challenge to us and his legacy to us. We must embrace his call and complete the job that he and his millions of colleagues began in the latter half of the 20th century. We, the staff of Pan-African Perspective, hope that these selected quotes will be of use to you and encourage you to continue your commitment to the noble struggle of creating a socialist, united African continent and global nation. This is our only hope of finding the justice, freedom, happiness and prosperity that is in fact the right of all humanity. "History has shown that where the Great Powers cannot colonize, they balkanize. This is what they did to the Austro-Hungarian Empire and this is what they have done and are doing in Africa. If we allow ourselves to be balkanized, we shall be re-colonized and be picked off one after the other...."

      http://www.panafricanperspective.com/nkrumahquotes.html

    • a friend of mines father was a member of the SOE during the second world war, dropped into Burma to fight the Japanese, his local contact and leader of the anti-Japanese forces and ally of the old colonial administration was one General Aun Sang (sp?). His name was Lieutenant Colonel Tom Carew.

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/4928761/Lieutenant-Colonel-Tom-Carew.html

    • well you do have a point Louis, the centripetal forces that the authors allude to, of tribalism, thats always a good one, and sectarians etc are receiving enthusiastic support from the USA's regional allies, and the problem is that the local forces of both the left and those that just want more responsible governance, even if it is neo-liberal or capitalist are simply no match for the global forces ranged against them, despite the odiousness of the Syrian regime, which they share in no small measure with such regimes as that in power in Washington, but i dont see scores of Americans fighting and dying destroying the material bases for social organization, perhaps it is all just pro-baath bleating, is Libya the model? the problem is that these societies have been under considerable stress for a very long time, and are deeply penetrated by all sorts of foreign agencies destruction of the state will provide tremendous opportunities for all sorts of retrograde forces to manipulate the outcomes of any general conflagration, the only regional groups with an organizational capacity are Islamists and they are disastrously inept. its like a revolution without revolutionaries,

      No doubt the authors also do represent the disappointment of hawks in the US who were hoping for more favourable results but they also hint at the Congo option, endless low intensity conflict which is better than nothing for the empire, and the people of the region are likely to retire from the political arena in terror leaving the terrain open for some very retrograde groups.

      The US has rarely had problems with Arab regimes they are easily co-opted, the worry so eloquently described in an Eisenhower presidency national security document has been the resistance of the peoples to domination, they may not be delirious with joy at current developments but they don't have too much worry about either, dont you think? what are the major challenges they face in Syria, Libya, Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi, Somalia, Afghanistan. Iraq and the Gulf? not local revolutionary forces anyway, perhaps Russian and Chinese penetration over the next few decades.

    • I see nothing to complain about in the article, except all the final paragraph, perhaps, about how the western powers helped liberate the Arabs from, inter alia Saddam Hussein, when it is well known that they also helped install him and conspired against Abdul Kareem Kasem, a Shia much and much beloved revolutionary leader by all sectors of the Iraqi people, dispatched like Lumumba with the connivance of our then man in Baghdad Saddam Hussein, and Turkey the west supplanted Turkey sure enough, but liberate is too strong a word to use.

      Also re Salafists, i never thought i would say this but i prefer the term Muslim Fundamentalist to the use of Salafi, or Jihadi-Salafi, but there we are, it seems to have stuck. such things as islah so ripe for misunderstanding cant be far behind. Because of its derivation from a traditional phrase the Pious Ancestors, in one sense all Muslims would sort of consider themselves salafi, though it has in truth assumed a new meaning, depressingly, no doubt al-Islah cant be far behind.

      most Muslim Fundamentalists are political quietists, and oddly are in some senses some of them are more liberal than some traditionists, but really strangely they have the reputation of favouring the Hanafi madhab, Abu Hanifa in the crucial matter of what constitutes unbelief differed with the Muatazilites (Rationalists), the Hanbalites and even Ashari in asserting that faith in the heart and declaration were enough crucially rejecting "acts" as signs of unbelief, odd.

      Modern Fundamentalists call each other Khawarij or Murji'a, derogatively, the Khawarij being what would now be called Jihadi-Salafist, both terms are drawn from the crises of legitimacy that began in the reign of Uthman, the Murji'a or postponers accepted his rule despite his questionable policies and the Khawarij (seceders) derive from an incident during the battle the Siffin when Ali with astonishing magnanimity accepted arbitration at the point of victory, he really did behave very well during the whole battle, witness the skirmishes at the river, only to be denounced by some of his followers crying "la hukm illa li-llah" Judgement is Gods alone, so they seceded from his camp and eventually one of their number assassinated him, as he was praying, he also behaved very well while dying and is reported to have said when the guy who struck him with a sword as he was prostrating was brought back to the scene bound moments later "loosen the ropes on that man, cant you see that they are hurting him, treat him kindly"( from the Naghul Balagha) before bleeding to death. Sunnis though revering Ali obviously privately feel he was a touch too idealistic and his opponent the son of Abu Sofyan, and an Umayya like Uthman, one of the Prophets most determined enemies assumed control of the state, and was admirably worldly and practical in administering it, from this traditionist scholars propound a distrust of idealistic rulers, but they wont tell you that, its a behind closed door kind of thing.

      anyway as to the current Arab foreign legion they are terrifying anyone supporting their depredations in the Levant and North Africa is going regret it and no doubt blame the barbarity of Islam. I thought it was a good article because i largely agree with it, so no surprise there, our people are exhausted and frightened despite their bravery and steadfastness, they have children to feed and old people to protect its not a game and no new worlds are being birthed, its the same old game of domination and the powers are opting for chaos.

  • I am you
    • dear Stephen just to be clear it is worth mentioning that we Muslims in some ways lead the world in hubris and inhumanity, but that is not because of Islam, and i get what you are saying kind of i think, not sure to be honest. it is quite likely that because of my perspective i accord less importance to logic and "reason" that perhaps i should to be a worthwhile interlocutor, i don't know.

      You know Suzuki Roshi's famous statement, "Best mind beginners mind, because in the beginners mind are many possibilities in the experts few".
      So when learning about Islam, what is it that one is learning? The subject is so huge a vast literature and an extensive history, it is the traditionist ideology of Islam that was largely destroyed by the impact colonialism, at one level, though it persists in the general piety of the people.

      Ii is a mistake, i think to regard Islam as purely an offshoot of Christianity and Judaism (and Zoroastrianism etc) Islam is also an eastern religion. Let me briefly explain what i mean, one of the first, if not the first, Eastern Guru's to teach in the west was Inayat Khan, what he taught is no less "Islam" than the dry musings of a Bin Baz.
      Islam as i used to "joke" is a system of spiritual larceny, deeply influenced by Buddhism, Christian Gnosticism and Jewish Kabalism, when people learn about Islam sadly many of them end up speaking as if they were Scholars, I have been told about Islam by quite a few 1st year undergraduates, who having completed a one term module in Islamic studies regale me with all sorts of hard and fast facts about it, how to interpret the Quran, apparently it contains both allegorical and explicit material, who would have thought so? (it is all allegory in the sense that even explicit statements have to be interpreted, obviously, and in that lies all the tremendous possibilities and of course dangers) a shallow reading of the Quran, something that we Muslims engage in a great deal is, a waste of time, and unlikely to provide any grounds for compassionate or positive thought. I am perhaps only able to share my own confusion, what can i say within that confusion however is an ever present possibility of "Universal Mercifying" (Ibni Arabi "God has made me Absolutely Compassionate, A universal Mercifier").

      People when they study Islam for purpose of finding out what it is and just how good or bad it is rarely read deeply or extensively.
      so let me now having as usual digressed try to draw all this together with Refaats poem. As you look so shall you see. There can be no clear distinctions between self and other, our sense of separateness and distance from the objects and others we experience is on consideration illusory, we are each other as much as we are ourselves. One of the current areas of intellectual activity within western academia that is taking ideas from "Mysticism" and treating them quite seriously, as well as all kinds of therapeutic disciplines ie cognitive psychology, is General Systems theory, very much involved with mechanical feedback systems, like those in self guided missiles, ironic, which has found in Buddhist dialectics, specifically related to causality a rich source of enlightenment. Muslims no less than others are able to extract all sorts of things from their heritage some leading to beneficial outcomes, depending on what one means by that and others less so. As Refaat is also pointing out he is the oppressor also, if you are really an opponent of anger, violence and hatred what could inspire you to anger? look at its effects. Do you really think that Islam provides us any more reasons to hate and kill than those we can find ourselves by a superficial understanding of how the world works, with its worthless baubles and thrills, if we are not love we are nothing, how this works out how are we are to respond who knows i have no answer, and i have no idea what Islam is or as in Refaats poem who is the first or the last, who is exalted and who is degraded who can say? we come as one or not at all.

      "On the sands of North Africa I carried Palm fronds
      and between East and exile
      I burned maps on Egyptian ports.
      Through the alleys of Benghazi and Derna
      I was asked for my identity card
      I'd torn it in two
      I gave the Inspector a half
      and the other to my beloved.......

      Peace to the murdered
      Peace to living
      Peace to you, partisan, soldier, and farmer
      Peace to workers
      Peace to you who walk on water
      Peace to the date palms that failed
      to sate the children's hunger
      Peace to you, Land of Rifles
      and Graves
      And to you, Circle of Life
      Peace"
      Saadi Youseff from "The Ends of the African North.

      I was sent this by an Australian colleague:
      Mohammed entered his classroom.
      "What is your name?" asked the teacher.
      "Mohammed".... answered the kid.
      "We are in Australia and, there is no Mohammed. >From now on your name will be Bruce,"replied the teacher.
      In the evening, Mohammed returned home. "How was your day, Mohammed?" asked his mother.
      "My name is not Mohammed, I am in Australia and now my name is Bruce."
      "Ah, are you ashamed of your name, are you trying to disown your parents, your heritage, your religion? Shame on you," and she beat him.
      Then she called the father and he too beat him savagely.
      The next day Mohammed returned to school. When the teacher
      saw him with all the bruises she asked:
      "What happened to you little Bruce?"
      "Well, Miss, 2 hours after becoming Australian I was attacked by two fucking Arabs!..."

      Peace Dear Stephen.

    • i love the arrhythmic heart beat of it cadences, its utterly simple Humanity, how the author has slyly but throughly put the whole basis of nationing/othering/niggering/dominating to the sword, by exposing its self defeating cycles of assertion self pity and occlusion only a brave writer a heroic person could produce such piece, its a tremendous inspiration, the product of a very fine poetic sensibility.

      "all you have to do is close your eyes"

    • "Consider what implications this has for the poet’s moving message."

      Stephen dear boy, you are perhaps using a quantitative approach where a qualitative one may render more rewarding results.

      condsider the immortal lines of Darwish, written about, and i think at the time of, Sabra and Chatilla
      Earth Presses Against Us by Mahmoud Darwish

      Earth is pressing against us, trapping us in the final passage
      To pass through we pull off our limbs
      Earth is squeezing us. If only we were wheat, we might die yet live
      If only it were our mother so she might temper us with mercy
      If only we were pictures of rocks held in our dreams like mirrors
      We glimpse faces in their final battle for the soul, of those who will be killed
      by the last living among us. We mourn their children’s feast.
      We saw faces of those who would throw our children out of the windows
      of this last space. A star to burnish our mirrors.
      Where should we go after the last border? Where should birds fly after the last sky?
      Where should plants sleep after the last breath of air?
      We write our names with crimson mist!
      We end the hymn with our flesh
      Here we will die. Here, in the final passage.
      Here or there, our blood will plant olive trees.

      blood doesnt plant olives does that temper the impact of the piece, nor does anyone expel birds from skies, what was Darwish thinking.

      you could try reading some Gerald Vizenor say the Trickster of Liberty or Emile Habiby's very famous Secret life of Saeed, no counting needed, if you are having trouble engaging with this white hot limpid
      piece, it would warm you up, as from such things a new scripture may evolve which may be some use to the new worlds emerging, counting Methesulah's years is not a useful way to approach the old ones we still consult.

      and that other thread is dead but really Hitchens, old thing you gotta be kidding. even Said Arjuman is garbage when it comes to early Islamic History, but at least he is not a pig ignorant yahoo, like the late Hitchens and can be very interesting in a kind of Weberian way about some modern Iranian developments.

    • wow! I am you is a very profound thing to say, what a brilliant piece.

      everyone is just another you, this is part of a formal Vajrayana compassion meditation, seeing others as just another you, Tong Len practice.

      Pema Chodron explains

  • Exile and the Prophetic: How much justice will there be in a 'just' resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?
    • "Sure, that’d be great! And just between you n’ me, where do you plan to stash all the Zionists, who are more than willing to use violence to prevent them having those rights?" no not stash defeat, its the only answer no one is willing to live as 3/4 of a human or less, yes rivers of blood later but that is what is coming, if not now then later, transform or die, is i think a Californian slogan isnt it,

      anyway despite all the eternal fear and trauma bs Jews and westerners seem very complacent to me in a "It cant happen here" sort of way, its already happening here just not to people they hang with or in environments they frequent, between Omdurman and the Somme was barely a couple of decades

      "My, what a tender concern you evince for the reputation of your Semetic brethren. Thanks."

      no just an observation most westerners leave me pretty cold, its the neuroses and tedious self obsession, give me Jamaicans any day and their "We run tings, tings na run we" attitude and if they are in short supply Karateka will have to do. Semetic bretheren, whatever those are, sounds contagious like pederasty, i wouldn't touch with a barge pole.

    • "Interesting to note the fact here that the self-appointed royal saudis, their lineage, their ancestors that is, used to be jews who converted to islam for the specific purpose of destroying islam from within." eh?

      i'd check your sources again as i dont recall seeing this anywhere, well except in the rantings of nutters, for the specific purpose of destroying Islam from within, as if we need any help in that endeavour. Or you could just post your sources for this wild claim, Jews who converted to Islam were the backbone of the faith, and Christians and Pagans, the Marwanid princes did more to "destroy" Islam than anyone else in the opinion of many and Abu Sufyans' heirs and the Umayya secured the empire and Islam went out of the window, thats the history i was taught, if you think about it, its not really feasible is it? unless you believe in historical conspiracies and malevolent "races" and religions.

      As to wahhabism, well its history is interesting, as you know, he was anathematized by his brother and everyone else and driven out of Nejd, but his ideas were seized upon by Ibn Saud as they provided a legal avenue to revolt against the Sublime Porte, and with connivance of the British, from the very start, Arabia was prized from the Ottoman empire. The ideology of the Muwahhidun is distinctly modern and reductive and related as are most fundamentalisms with state building in the modern age, where religion becomes a national ideology, it is not unlike Zionism in its relationship with its parent faith.

      The Zionists and Saudi's are the main regional opponents of the ideologies of national liberation in the region, along with all the little monarchies etc. anyway as predicted by the Prophet Muslims lead the way in the destruction of Islam, that we will concede to no one.

      It is and always has the been the Muslim view that the three faiths co-operate, the war of Abrahamic faiths is a distinctly European notion, read some Kuftaro, say, The Way of Truth, or
      http://www.h-net.org/reviews/showrev.php?id=33890

      i know its weird but Muslims believe in Judaism and Christianity, its a requirement of the faith, and in Buddhism etc and all forms of inspired insight, there are none without guidance.

      "And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the Law[Taurat] that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel[Injeel]: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear Allah."
      Sura 5:46 Al-Maeda

      all the best and all that

    • Its one of the characteristics of the discussion of I/P is that it often becomes a negotiation, whose aim is to postulate a solution with minimal justice, a whats the minimum that the Palestinians will accept to stop the conflict, as if they are the major drivers of it rather tha its powerless victims, leaving aside the other peoples of the region who also have profound connections with Palestine (part of my family come from Nablus we would love to look them up not having heard from them for longer than i have been alive) this seems to miss the point to me anyway. The first issue is not to decide how little restitution we can get away with, isnt the most crucial issue at this point to stop the slaughter and immisseration of Palestinians, and its concomitant disaster for Israeli society, a very reasonable objective surely.

      Couldnt one imagine:
      Granting Palestinians the same rights that all Western peoples take for granted and then allowing whatever processes, be they legal, social or economic to take their course, without any hard and fast notions of where they might lead, wouldn't that be acceptable.
      How would Israel be transformed by integrating into the region, by establishing relationships of amity not just with the regimes (which are all pretty dodgy) but with the peoples of the region, solutions that attempt to freeze the conflict will in the end only be temporary, Israel is in the middle east not Europe or the new world and will have in the end to develop a middle eastern perspective.

      As to Chomsky's Jewishness, I dont get it, every body is something, and dont prophets speak to God, how is he a prophet? the one thing that Islam seems to have got right is that there are no prophets anymore, we will have to work things out using our own meager mental and spiritual resources, God, whatever that means, is staying out it, perhaps a good thing in this day and age.

      Perhaps this not the right place to say this but to me this whole notion of Jewish power seems both illusory and dangerous, Israel is not powerful but extremely fragile, threatened apparently by an Iran which is a very mediocre power indeed, even without the sanctions and international isolation. In that regard i would have say i accept Chomsky's ideas that in the end Jewish and Lobby power is granted by the real nexus of corporate and imperial, which i would not really know how to characterize, but it surely isnt Jewish, transnational perhaps, but Jews it seems are being singled out as the cause of much mayhem and injustice i think this is really worrying in the medium term. it wont take much for Jews to sink to the status currently enjoyed by Arabs in the Western mind, some one is going to carry the can for the brutal transformation of society under way in the 1st world, and it wont be the 1%, which slogan seems to me to be designed to be misconstrued at some point in the near future, redounding to nobodies benefit.

      I can remember reading your towards a Jewish liberation theology or something when i was a kid, cant remember too much but it did make me feel a bit thick, and as if i hailed from a different universe.

  • 'This is travesty of American criminal justice': Supreme Court denies Holy Land Five appeal
    • " Also sad to read the comments of so many intelligent , sensitive people , talking about the “Values” they were taught as youngsters that is now being betrayed by these “Neocons” and “Zionists.” ....Those “values” never existed except in our school books, media disinformation, film. "

      well! just right peeesss, its called seeing through privilege

      do no black Americans post here, I wonder what they would say of American justice?

      "They won’t be the last sad to say."
      courage mon brave, they may be, who knows, the monstrous nostrums running this world are not invulnerable, i once did a broadcast about my love for my sacred brother Ariel Sharon, not one complaint except a Jewish guy, Aubrey Cohen emailed me to say what the fuck was i thinking of, actually truth is i was thinking like a Muslim, not the brightest pennies in the stack may be, but our hearts are big, do you not remember that many Iraqis ran to save Blackwater guys hit by IEDS and when asked by reporters one Iraqi remarked "Because they are people" no one hates you, we all are grieving we all have loss, dont you read Moosers posts, is he not the real Jew. Jazak allah khairan Musa

      peace perfect peace is not so unattainable, in fact it is the natural state, of both the world and the psyche. Just check the scriptures, Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Buddhist and all others, science may not agree but who cares, comforting though it is to have science on our side, have you read Lafif Lakdars take downs of the "science" in the Quran, its hilarious though he and i are opposite sides of the equation he, like that ancient Lebanese poet from Ma'arat al Numan Abu Alaa Al-Maari make me laugh. No one in reality is ever wronged the Palestinians and all victims of empire hold us lovingly in their hearts, really you should check them, this anger and despair is the wage of privilege, the despised are glorious in the depth of their love.

  • 'NYT' op-ed equating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism relied on Nasrallah quote that is in all likelihood a fabrication
    • well at least she didnt say Muslims so Arabs whether they be Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Druze, Mandean or entirely uninterested in Religion are we can presume, all the same, does the statement work if we exchange People for Arabs, maybe the young lady is just a bit parochial and idealizes non-Arabs.

    • Not only am i sure Harry's Place will have the definitive list, any of the incidence of anti-semitic acts, laws, statements massacres etc so common place through out the ME, will at least be balanced by general population-phobic acts, how does one explain in these antisemitic nations that the prisons and torture chambers are full of Muslims, a few Leftists, but mainly Muslims drawn from the common populace and any other trouble makers its a conundrum? when nations live under local kleptocrats, sponsored by the global kleptocracy is it any wonder that Jews as well as everyone else get caught up in the resultant mayhem, for Jews it is all rhetorical suffering, for the others blood and immisseration.

      I mean in Egypt despite anti-Christian legislation, mainly to do with property rights the state has been killing Muslims at a quite impressive rate, that much vaunted Arab nationalist Amr Moussa once opined that as Egypt had a population of 80 million his desire to kill, yes he said kill as torture is just too good for some, a mere 500,000 Islamists it would hardly inconvenience the nation. Is he an Islamophobe and why would any one care if he added that badge to his collection. Algeria all that slaughter of Muslims, but not doubt incidental antisemitism, which as Mosser asks above is what exactly, tut tut.

      Just what is the struggle against antisemitism in the Arab world, what does it constitute? whats it all about Alfie?

      The piece so recently sited by a commentator here, from Harry's Place, was expressive of a kind of profound ignorance about the nature of the relationship of Islamists and Muslims to anti-Jewish ideas, it would be impossible for any avowed Muslim to call the temple a brothel er well because they revere Moses, David, Solomon et al as prophets of their own spiritual lineage, not surprising since they are drawn from the same cultural common wealth that produced them, I mean surat-al-qasas, al-imran etc, really unless the Taurat itself is anti-semitic, and dont give me pigs and monkeys for fs, go read that surah it says no such thing, those who were reduced to a bestial state were so requited by 'Absolute Reality" as a consequence of their own acts not their ethnic or confessional origins, its a somewhat preachy morality tale, in one sense and a profound statement about the nature of experience and its relation to "Reality" as we experience it, not an antisemitic screed, in this sense the identity Jewish is to all intents and purposes indistinguishable from Arabs and Muslims generally, in the Islamic canon the ancient Jews were the Muslims of their day er obviously, what passes for antisemitism amongst some Muslims is precisely their accurate reading of the Scriptures, or how does the Taurat end, any one know, vive la difference i say. there is of course that jokey error in the Quran when what is Talmudic is wrongly ascribed to the Taurat, and people say the Lord has no sense of humour, scholars agonize about such things poor dears, as if it matters, maybe all this religion and all those millenia of human thought and wisdom is just so much junk, it all depends on how you read it, and what your underlying assumptions are. I see no racism or immorality in any scriptures but then i am not looking for them, or Tayatha gate gate Paragate Parasamgate bodhi soha, as some do say. when all is said and done you have to laugh, here we are the lords of creation who cant tell shit from shinola, me obviously included.

  • US immigration officials detain and interrogate Imran Khan about drones and who's pushing the State Department
    • dear Annie you have actually made me weep,

      it is an inconceivably kind and generous thing to say about my ravings, from the bottom of my heart thank you, not because i think i have as a result attained some accolade but for reaching out to an irascible old fool, and reminding me when i was lost, and despairing, that its one love, i never mean to be disrespectful but my mind/heart burns with a love that i can neither contain nor actualize, what a worthless man, i am tongue tied.

      below i have posted links not just to the real voice of faith and its unimaginable richness, its a mere half hour it is the only thing i have to offer in respect of the enormous gift you have bestowed on me, through you i find myself. one love.

      and in that cafe, could be bar also, as if you would not have enough to teach the likes of me, strong black coffee, sour bourbon and some bitter proudzionized olives, the black and the green, are all we would need.

      The real voice of Religion

      Part Two

      Final part

    • Several times in articles about Khan his name is rendered as Kahn, isnt that an eastern European spelling for Cohen? is this a spell checker glitch, my spellchecker accepts Khan but not Kahn. Weird.

      In 2005 the US granted a visa to the diminutive 82 year old Sheikh Dr MAZ Badawi KBE, he was to address the Chatauqua something or other, on arrival he was held and questioned for 6 hours, during which he was not even offered a glass of water, then marched under armed guards and put on a plane back to the UK , after voluntarily withdrawing his request for entry, the US ambassador privately wrote a contrite letter of apology, and he was issued with another invitation but he died before it came round.
      These acts vastly strengthen those forces within the Muslim world who see no possibility for accommodation with the western powers, the question is, is the "West" prepared to live at peace with the rest of the world, the evidence would seem to suggest not, so called moderates with the Muslim world are constantly played for fools by the "West" and find their hands progressively weakened ceding ground oddly enough to sectarian and other regressive forces who are often in open alliance, as in Bosnia, Libya, Syria and the whole nest of iniquity that is to be found in the authorities of Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states, with these same western powers.

      The problems for those struggling in the Muslim world are almost insurmountable in their complexity and the bases for solidarity are fast disappearing, as Finkelstein has pointed out we need a new language and new ideas to express Humanities urgent need for mutual care and respect. The Muslims under pretty much continuous assault for more than a century are succumbing to exhaustion, every attempt to attain a liveable society is being frustrated by a combination of local forces in an ever changing kaleidoscope of temporary alliances and the over-arching power of foreign overlords.
      The language of Socialism, that once held out the promise of a decent life for developing societies is dead and the Islamists, when not indebted to this Socialist past, which very many are, rely on platitudes or superficial and proscriptive renderings of Islamic ideologies. Those who aspire to sufi or "spiritual" versions of Islam have retired from the political arena for the time being.

      below is an article that captures the fractures underway from may 2012

      The left’s attitude to Egypt’s Islamists has long been a point of debate – Revolutionary Socialist Hossam el-Hamalawy says a sit‑in at Egypt’s Ministry of Defence shows it’s vital to take sides

      During a march last week, a young comrade I know from Cairo University approached me— a medical student who was among the field hospital doctors during the Ministry of Defence (MoD) sit-in.

      He told me of a Salafi woman in niqab, who kept on kissing the Revolutionary Socialists red flag during the sit-in, shouting, “Forgive me, I didn’t know about you before!”

      I replied with the story of another comrade who was entering the sit-in and was being searched by a Salafi sheikh.

      When the sheikh found the flag of the Revolutionary Socialists, Marxist books, as well as issues of The Socialist newspaper in their bag, he told the young student, “Come in son, may God be with you!”

      These were just two stories, among many, witnessed by our comrades during the controversial sit-in.

      The language of Socialism seems dead except to Islamists

  • 'Exodus' propaganda even converted Justin Raimondo (but now the dream is dead)
    • "There was little song or laughter or joy in Arab life. … In this atmosphere, cunning, treachery, murder, feuds and jealousies became a way of life. The cruel realities that had gone into forming the Arab character puzzled outsiders. Cruelty from brother to brother was common."

      all of which can now subsumed under the rubric of "Holocaust Denial" (and some others i cant be bothered to enumerate) the essence of the bad Arab in the Western narrative will be embraced by a culture of resistance just as the stereotype of the Ghetto Hustler and "nigga" has been by black Americans, why is this act of self assertion surprising, people resist being humiliated, scrutinized, judged and their lives despoiled, by their self satisfied smug self righteous betters. One of the reasons that Palestinian failings are so assiduously recounted, particularly by Diasporic Jews is that it acts as a semi-absolution for their own complicity in on-going crimes being perpetrated against an entirely innocent peoples, never mind the incessant pounding in to dust of the whole of the MENA and Pakistan and Afghanistan and the Horn of Africa and Central Africa for reasons of Corporate Imperial "necessity" of which we are beneficiaries and complicit in. Personally I prefer to turn that basilisk eye on to myself and note my own cowardice and failure to find meaningful responses. Black Elk wrote that he was personally responsible for the breaking of the hoop of the nation, as he had failed to live out his visionary experiences, but he was just an uneducated savage, who at thirteen fought at Little Bighorn, professors rarely take personal responsibility, with the exception of those like Chomsky.

      I remember that film with Richard Harris "A Man Called Horse" where they took the trouble to enumerate the brutalities of, obviously part of a racist mythology, Lakota society, especially the death by neglect of old women whose men folk had died, they were driven out of the Teepees to die in the bitter cold of winter, what is one to do with such people, and why are they all in denial, when we point this out to them from the comfort of our porches over looking the broad and beautiful prairies, which are now nearly silent and lifeless. One has to wonder what it will take to open the hearts of the oppressors cousins, Israeli's are often really far more human in many ways about the "situation" than those observing from afar, because the raw brutality and real time trauma, even if it is of despised others, will have that effect, we are all one blood after-all.

  • Omar Saad, a Druze-Palestinian musician from the Galilee, refuses Israeli military service
    • "The olives I cured from the tree are bitter, so I’ve moved on."

      oh you need to ask a Palestinian how to cure olives, if they're bitter you didnt do it right, olives are very bitter prior to curing, the process deals with that, but then you are foreigner, you should eat every one, perhaps the jinn of the tree is grieving.

  • An 'industry' built on hate: How the right-wing successfully brought anti-Muslim bigotry into the American mainstream
    • thanks Stephen, I am going to go through your reply's carefully, which is not my usual way of dealing with posts here. First i have to attend to something in appreciation of your post above be patient i have some little difficulties, being a refugee of a kind from all manner of forces, some of them Arab, and Muslim at the moment, but you raise, particularly in posts not addressing me directly some interesting dare i say crucial points, about Muhammad and Moses and interpretation. soon come.

    • "whose commitment to progressive values can hardly be questioned by any well-informed and fair-minded person"

      but surely your point is that everything can be questioned, or do all fairminded people agree, werent such statements accurately satirized in the well known 50 billion flies joke, and isnt this kind of thinking precisely a form fundamentalism, perhaps I am neither well informed or fairminded, I can live with that, and it is almost certainly true in many ways.

      Firstly conflating Saadawi and Rushdie, is a bit lax, or is it lox, you need to look more closely at Rushdie, my father, an Alim, famously said he would shelter him in his own house, whether he is progressive or not I wouldnt know, however some of his pronouncements are certainly open to criticism, both about Islam and other political issues. Saadawi, is an entirely different entity, i reviewed her then husbands novel nearly forty years ago for some magazine, he was tortured by the Egyptian regime of the day, I dont recall much about it other than his quite intense rendering of torture and some bad literary sex, the review was mixed. Saadawi is positions are rejected by certain Isalmists and not by others its a complex situation.

      Lets cut to the chase rather than engaging in my usual rambling, there is a problem with the formulations such as "Criticizing Islam", "Criticizing Christianity, Judaism, Progressivism",

      Firstly because they always rely on specific interpretations of such categories, which are in no way universal, there is no Islam in this sense that is amenable to examination, much less critical scrutiny.
      Secondly, er probably finally for this part, if one is to criticize say Judaism from where will one do this, what is the exalted vantage point that from which one could do this, there is no value free set of criteria from which to do this. This is not to say that one can not challenge specific interpretations both in their own terms and in terms of ideas and formulations external to them. This is called discourse and is what the world is made of.

      So the notion that Islamists in the Muslim world use the accusation of Islamophobia to silence criticism runs into one major problem, such charges would be meaningless in a Muslim society, the discourse there is of a different character, all these religio-racial-enthno-etc-phobias are a part of the western discourse. One would be much more likely, depending on what sort of Islamist one was dealing with to hear charges of heresy, spreading corruption or perhaps even pertinent considered responses drawing on all sorts of ideas both internal to and external to actual Islamic sources, as such. This is of course not to say that Islamists, Muslims etc are not perfectly valid entities for critical analysis, why not, but I would be interested in what you would consider a valid criticism of Islam, i assume from a progressive perspective, keeping in mind that for me there is no Islam separate from some specific interpretation, there is no Islam as such out there, in this sense of course there is no Quran either, or Hadith or Siraa, or anything that just sits there like a natural object. But i am always wiling to learn, it is interesting.

      Someone posted a link to a comment by a Naval College don of Islamic studies making the point that there is no Sharia either, do you see what I am getting at. Difference is a tough thing to integrate in to ones thinking. Saba Mahmoud was savagely criticized for her book on the womens piety movement because she questioned the universality of "Western" notions of self actualization etc.

      I have problem with the notion of truth existing outside any ideological structure, for fundamental philosophical reasons which need not detain us long, truth-value is obviously reliant on the criteria used to determine it, truth is if it is anything at an ideological expression, secondly if there is indeed some truth, that I am of course privy to, how does one account for those whose views and truths differ, what are they, heretics or malicious ideologues.

      So to summarize to engage in a process of inference, whose validity can not ever be unproblematically established, of chimeras, Such as Islam etc, is perhaps what all this discourse is, its fun though if you dont take it too seriously.
      I may have missed the point somewhere. Words can be very deluding.

    • Also she wrote "Politics and Prophecy", i have a copy its no longer in print i think, which was specifically about the then "secret alliance" between some forms of evangelical Christianity and Israel. I thought she wrote another one I/P, Forcing Gods hand, which makes me think that i may have confused these two titles. In one she accompanied a American Christian tour of the WB, its very interesting.

      I recently gave my copy of Soul Sister to a black feminist who was blown away by it, the cover illustration, a photograph of the black Halsell, is very striking, if I remember correctly she took some medication which affected her liver function or something to turn her skin dark, long time since i read it.

      Anyone disparaging Halsell as writer on these things isnt worth reading, in my humble opinion.

  • Extremist youth group storms French mosque after releasing anti-Arab manifesto
    • oh my long probably irrelevant comment got eaten, i have heard of such things first time its happened to me.

      well yeah fair enough, it is depressing when Muslims go one about its obligatory nature and yes it has nothing to do with religion except for those who wear it for religious reasons i suppose, however it is a very powerful statement of a despised identity, in Melbourne I am of course staying in the arab quater, in Roxie, many Hijab wearing women sporting broad Australian accents in English, a large Assyrian community like my neighbours perhaps those uncomfortable westerners might want to delve into the origins of their discomfort, all sorts of stuff makes this hyphenated westerner uncomfortable, but i dont feel privileged to judge others, its their life and they will experience the consequences of what they do, not me, so my discomfort is not any big deal is it, aboriginal women dont veil and are t thus held in the highest regard here in Australia, i spent a convivial evening with some folks in NSW who regalled me with Abo stories all to the constant refrain of "We are not racist but...", it was a martial arts event, many of them were commando's from the Oz military, it seemed pointless to engage them, they moved on to Lebo's, not veiling seemed not to do the Abo's much good, they werent uncomfortable during the subsequent training i accidentally injured my partner leading to much hilarity as they presumed i was exacting some kind of revenge, really just clumsy and unsure about his level of conditioning, all these westerners seemed pretty at ease, so we move in different circles. i doubt i could discomforted them if tried.

    • ah you mean uneasy in what way? as Tariq Ali said of western leftists when they hear the word "Culture" they pale. you are quite right if i hear another idiot go on about the "obligatory" veiling, a very poorly attested notion, to be polite, one of the most depressing things about us is the habit of hadith mining, people who really shouldnt be bothering themselves which things plough in to bukhari, muslim, tabari et al and read it as if it was the quran, the hadiths contain a vast and confusing mass of stuff, none can possibly be used to establish anything some Muslims refuse to have anything to do with them, some are very beautiful, I have always liked the "do not punish with fire" story and the definition of bigotry one, but as you imply the greatest abusers of Islam are Muslims.

      The making westerners uneasy is however more problematic lots of stuff makes them uneasy, i am a westerner, albeit severely hyphenated, many Muslim women are in an invidious position i remember a security guard attacking an Emirati in a Tripoli (Libya) hotel who complained that the beautiful young woman behind the desk was unveiled it was funny, westerners get bent over all sorts of stuff breast augmentation bothers me but i tend to keep such things to myself and wouldnt bomb or even evince the mildest incivility to its adherents or the augmented, not really any of my business, Lola Ferrari was a tragic figure, i was sitting in a Newcastle NSW traffic queue when the radio began discussing some guy whose personalized number plate was "LUV VAG" he was a divorcee apparently, women have a rough time, guys can be idiots. On the same program a couple were discussing their daughters birth which he attended at "the business end" as he described it and when asked to offer his feelings, he said "It was like watching your favourite Pub burn down" i am pretty uneasy about the culture that underlies all that, have always been involved with feminist academics and activists as was my late father, who famously advised women to remove their Hijabs if it was a compromise to their security, post 911, the response from some elements of our community, hysterical claims of the absolute obligation of women was one of the most sickening periods of my former professional life, as my father remarked Muslims dont know much about the Shari'ah or Fiqh,

      you know the three hells sufi joke?

      a great scholar has a vision and meets Jibreel, the angel asks him if there is anything he would like to see, "I want to see Hell" he asks, Jibreel takes him to a pool of fire the size of a large well, above stand two enormous Jinn armed with great hammers and forks the beings inside were trying desperately to escape their torment but the demons drove them back in, "That is the Hell of the Jews" next he came to pool of fire the size of a lake above stood three Jinn who drove the vast mass of beings who were attempting to get out back with their weapons, "That is the Hell for the Christians", the Scholar nodded approvingly, finally they came to a pool of fire the size of a Sea, there were no demons on its shores and the surface was smooth as glass and calm, "That is the Hell of the Muslims" the scholar surprised asked "But is it empty?" "Oh no says" Jibreel "Honestly its fuller than the others, but we have no need of demons as it is the Muslims themselves who keep each other in the flames"

    • "I’m against the veil myself" who has asked you wear one? Surely you are not dictating what a woman can or cant wear.

  • Pakistan: A land of competing narratives
    • Dear Ms. Bailey

      i've posted this here before if you haven't read Zafar Bangashs' piece you might find it interesting. As an aside i don't know what we can learn by deploying terms like "militant", "extremist" etc, it seems to me that westerners who know relatively little of the Muslim world would be better looking a little deeper, these epithets don't really aid your understanding at all, Dr. Farid Esack writes about the Red Mosque affair for instance it might be worth a look.

      "Malala was born on July 12, 1997. Her father, Ziauddin Yousufzai, owns a number of for-profit schools. While almost everything else in Pakistan is going down the drain, for-profit schools and the closely related non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that are generously financed from abroad are thriving businesses.

      It was a BBC reporter Abdul Hai Kakkar who discovered Malala in early 2009. His assignment was to find a courageous schoolgirl willing to share her experiences of the threats by Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) against girls getting education. The TTP led by Mullah Fazlullah was shutting down schools in Swat Valley as it flexed its muscles. Kakkar approached Ziauddin Yusufzai for help and he willingly offered his own daughter’s experiences.

      The plan gelled into Malala, then 11 years old, writing her diary that the BBC World Service would put on its website under the title, “The Diary of a Pakistani School Girl.” In order to protect her identity, Malala was given the pseudonym “Gul Makai” (corn flower). The diary detailed Malala’s life under Taliban rule, their attempts to take control of the valley, and her views on promoting education for girls. One cannot help but wonder whether her father’s motive was in promoting girls’ education or he feared his income dwindling if the girls’ schools he was running were shut down.

      Malala’s cover, however, was blown that summer when Adam B. Ellick of the New York Times featured her in two videos describing her family’s life as well as showed her at school. This was the time the Pakistani military was about to launch an attack on Swat Valley."

      https://crescent.icit-digital.org/articles/was-malala-yousafzai-used-for-a-larger-us-plan

  • Israeli film 'The Gatekeepers' brings truths about occupation that Palestinians are vilified for saying
    • Israeli film ‘The Gatekeepers’ brings truths about occupation that Palestinians are vilified for saying:

      This is a little passive voice isnt it, who vilifies Palestinians and why?

      It is hardly surprising that Israelis are showing a greater ability to speak plainly to the issues that many Diaspora Jews seem quite unable to.

      and this is plainly wrong: "and there is no doubt who has all the humanity in that scene." no one has no humanity.

  • Smadar Lavie's lesson on global neoliberal restructuring, Israeli style
    • And nothing like a destroyed society of untermenschen to provide a constant source of bogey men and atmosphere of threat, is it anything like the Projects in the US, it is axiomatic that a disenfranchised lumpen population will at the very least act as a disciplining force for the overlords of any society, as well as providing a downward pressure on labours share of the social product, declining or stagnating in the west since 1973 and the current 'asylum seeker' or 'illegal' status accorded to elements of the workforce allows hyper exploitation and permits the removal of rights from the general population, on the grounds of securing the homeland, leading to more efficient repression of any dissenting forces, Israel is a world leader in this respect and has fully availed itself of its unique comparative advantages in this sphere. For the Israeli political and business elite the lassitude for action is very wide.
      One of the key ways to address the weakness of civil society in the face of this is to unpack the bleak ideology of the 'conflict', the situation, how this will be accomplished without what Finkelstein described as a strategic defeat is unclear, perhaps a slow erosion of its regional power, sadly in terms of politics the surrounding states are strikingly similar, the Arabs locked into their nations and now with any that bucked the regional model, Libya, Iraq and to some extent Syria, Iran and Lebanon under severe stress and facing possible collapse, a general and effective regional non-sectarian movement for social justice seems somewhat far off, though it is being discussed, it is to prevent such from ever arising that local planners are investing in the promotion of Israeli or Lebanese (thank you France and Great Britain) style confessionalism, and many external groupings particularly supporters of Zionism and Islamophobes in the west and sectarians in the east are adding great fuel to this process of forcing communities in to mutually antagonistic blocks, also somewhat reminiscent of aspects of American pluralism, but a souped up version, organic social groupings in the middle east have found no answer to this new strategy as yet, except the tribe or the family, on our uppers as it were, because this is precisely what the planners envision, atomisation or modernisation is well on the way in many states, Egypt for one, family is both the site of protection and repression, dare i say it sometimes the fundamentalists have a point, both Jewish and Muslim, its just that when weighed against their proscriptions it is unclear as to what is worse, the pathology or the therapy.
      thank you for your generosity and red editors pen Annie, nuf said.

    • I attended a talk by her in Cork city under the aegis of the UCC sociology dept, discussing the parlous political impasse that the generally "right-wing" Mizrahi community in Israel has reached, it was fascinating and my response was that until the surrounding Arab peoples are able to throw off their oppressive regimes and offer some kind of political hopes for this community they are helpless prey to their own neo-liberal elite, it was before the much vaunted "Arab Spring", it was early 2010 i think. She made the excellent point that we have to have a way of talking to people who espouse extreme right wing views rather than right them off, I couldn't agree more, she was very impressive. I accidentally referred to her as my Smadar Levie, in a another thread, an embarrassing typo, as she clearly belongs to the world.

      That the Israeli masses are victims of the national security state is a no brainer, how this can be addressed is not so easy, they are surrounded by abysmal rentier states and have few credible avenues of resistance, their Arab bretheren and sisteren are fighting as best they can but are also subject to easy manipulation and repression, mutual solidarity is the key but how is it to be framed? Religious and ethnic politics are so much garbage, as many in the Arab world understand but with the demise of International Socialism we may have to come up with something of our own, note how quickly the Muslim/Christian solidarity in Egypt was quashed, by agent provocateurs and whole sale slaughter, the Arabs and Jews of the region do not need a Ghandi they need a Guevara and a well worked out home grown ideology of social and political justice. Fear is palpable in Egypt at the moment, fear and exhaustion, we are not Iraqis or Afghans after all, and the powers are unconstrained in their determination to avoid unwanted political alliances, perhaps that is too conspiratorial of me in this "shit happens" world. It is beyond dumb to think that our rulers are stupid, they have the best technocrats that money, duplicity and soulless malevolence can supply.

  • No room for racism in a movement working for equality and freedom
    • its just too perfect is it not in such a thread, about such an issue, but its a safe racism as racism against the powerless and despised is a safe activity, such "mistakes" are costless, Jews have no idea what it is to be defamed and have no way of responding, and that that defamation may cost lives and engender extreme suffering, US Jews in particular, it is a perfect illustration of the enormous social power wielded by the Jewish community in the states, is Hostage now beyond the pale, no purges, denunciations, careful review of his comment history mining it for signs of incipient Islamophobia, just an honest mistake? How anyone could believe that that crap was the words of Ismail Haniyeh escapes me, unless they harbour some kind of contempt for the purported speakers. "Brother Seamus" I mean as if.

      Were I to post some obviously bogus and racist stuff about Noahide Laws from one of those, 'the content of the Talmud' explains my antipathy to Jews would it get through, strangely smartness seems no guard against stupidity when prejudices are in play.

      15+IQ points, I am starting wonder, but then IQ has been so thoroughly discredited as a measure of anything other than privilege, for complex but readily understood factors, by some very clever secular Jewish blokes that some of you may even have heard of, Chomsky's work being a key contribution, in a sense. The most accurate indicator bar none of future academic performance is....parental income, IQ points are clearly for sale in upmarket boutiques, Hostage may need to stock up, perhaps he is running low after sterling work here in the comments sections. it was a bit of light relief.

      Palestinians in particular can not, whatever her history, afford to stand by Greta, because they are so despised, the costs for them will be too much, I am sure she understands and is willing to make the sacrifice, She was on the Mavi Mara some one said, but from the likes of Jewish Palestinian solidarity activists she can expect nothing but vicious denunciation, Atzmons whole baiting act operates in this territory, he is after all not just Jewish, but Israeli and plays quite disrespectfully with the diaspora Jewish sense of entitlement and their sense of having the right to scrutinize and preside over other communities (cf. The Black American community), and the anxious paranoia that underlies it, Israelis have no such concerns. Tony Martins "The Jewish Onslaught" is still out there and worth reading, another uppity Black guy.

      Some one in this thread or another mentioned Lionel Jefferies, without apparently understanding what he was doing, reversing the racist tropes so beloved of white people and applying them to an analysis whiteness, it reminds me of that site "what white people like" which did the same and had 1000 comment threads of enraged white folks who didnt see the joke.

      well at least here humour is not in short supply.

    • and as to Abbas how about something beyond innuendo, what other than blasphemy precisely are you accusing him of, perhaps you could find his thesis, read it and get back to us. but no really we all know what those people are like. Harry is no different to eddie mullins, actually the man who started the site eventually abandoned it as the racism got too much even for him, glad to see there are those with stronger stomachs.

    • "Haniyeh was the head of the Hamas ticket that won the last election. He was selected to serve as the Prime Minister. He recently stated that the Holocaust wasn’t real, and that it was an invented thing; that the Jewish Temple was a brothel located in Yemen; that Jews already enjoy the right of self-determination in New York City; and that it is dishonest to suggest that Zionist children have human rights too. link to hurryupharry.org"

      i take it you are aware of the nature of the hurryupharry website that you linked to, and that article you link to is a hoax, you are an idiot, run by a virulently Islamophobic coterie, did you not read it, fool, and follow the link to the comment is free piece by Haniyeh, but no worries purveying racist garbage like this will have no consequences for the likes of you, will an apology follow. I can not sufficiently express my contempt. Do you really think Haniyeh would say any such things, you reveal yourself. How utterly stupid and what a repellant act. Couldn't you tell it was hoax brother Hostage.

    • I am puzzled by the statement "Israels actions will lead to increase in Antisemitism". How so?

      Did anyone worry about Apartheid leading to an increase in anti-Boer racism? the Boers have a record of concentration camp mass murder at the hands of the British, were derided as Yaapi's by the Anglo element of the white population, did anyone condemn, the PAC for their slogan "One Settler, One Bullet", rather than understanding such slogans as integral to the struggle for Human Rights in the former Apartheid state.

      The idea that acts by Israel leads to Antisemitism is an argument I would like to see fleshed out, an antipathy towards and frustration with Israeli and the various Jewish communities around world, many of whom are purveyors of the most active and sanguinary racism currently operating within the Western political sphere, does not seem to me to be a big deal. Anyone following the current French discourse of the Ramadan Pain au Chocolate?

      I had a few black American students at the seminary post 9/11, and many of them made the same point to me that though they suffered to some extent from anti-Muslim prejudice this paled in comparison to the problems they faced from being black in the USA and yet anti-Black racism seems not to excite the same visceral condemnation as claims of Antisemitism, it seems that in the pluralism of America it is assumed that ones ethnic identity is a freestanding cassus belli with everyone else's.

      Frankly anyone stupid enough to give any credence to racist notions is hardly worth engaging with, Abimuneh's need to vociferously distance himself from any hint of anti-Jewish prejudice is itself an expression of the authoritarian atmosphere growing the USA, i think, though to be honest, I know little of the USA.
      It is a common place observation, borne out by my own experience, that it is possible to maintain quite warm personal relationships with extreme right wing religious Zionists, a Rabbi and a couple of others, which for me sadly has not been possible with more "left-wing" and liberal Israeli's, because the latter are more reliant on Zionist fabulations to explain Palestinian resistance to dispossession, while the former are quite comfortable with straight power concepts and a "realist" interpretation of the conflict, with little need for racist essentialization of their victims, like Jabotinsky, and in the long run it seems to me that peace with the Right in Israel is more likely than with the "left", as my Smadar Levy, the Mizrahi sociologist, seems to imply.

      In common with some commentators here the hopes I invested in the Left have been sorely disappointed, but the getting of wisdom is, as they say, a bloody business, fraught with painful disillusionment.

    • "The mass murder of 5-6 million people is not something to be discussed lightly,"

      you see right there D, how many people died in the camps 6 million or an estimated 11m, why dont the others even merit a mention, were they not Jews, perhaps, or is that yet another example of "inconsistency"?
      and its not that long ago that that 5 would have cost you a lot, things change. Of course somethings are rarely if ever mentioned let alone discussed with inappropriate levity, inconsistency abounds apparently in a very consistent, and tedious, fashion,

      Australia And Britain Killed 6-7 Million Indians
      In WW2 Bengal Famine

      By Dr Gideon Polya

      29 September, 2011
      Countercurrents.org

      India contributed an army of 2.4 million men to assist the British war effort in World War 2. However India was rewarded by a British-imposed Bengal Famine (Bengali Holocaust, Indian Holocaust) that killed 6-7 million Indians in Bengal, Assam, Bihar and Orissa in the period 1942-1945. Australia was a major supplier of wheat but deliberately by-passed starving India , this boosting British food stocks and what was evidently a starvation-based military strategy to prevent Japanese advance into Bengal .

      While there was no catastrophic decline in the amount of rice or other grain available in Bengal, the price of rice edged up slightly during 1942 and by December 1942 the wholesale price of rice in Calcutta had increased to be double that in December 1941. By mid-1943 it had doubled again to be over 4 times greater than the price in December 1941. As analyzed by Economics Nobel Laureate Professor Amartya Sen ( Cambridge and Harvard) the Bengal Famine derived from a cashed-up Calcutta , a major industrial city involved in a war production boom, sucking rice out of a starving, rice-producing countryside.

      A variety of factors contributed to the greatly increased market price of rice but the absolute amount of rice and other grain was not a critical determinant as has been argued from a superficial analysis of the situation. There was grain available to alleviate the problem but then in late 1941 British gave Indian provinces autonomy over their food stocks, this contributing to the huge price increase in Bengal. Other factors included small decreases in the Bengal rice harvest due to fungal infestation and storm; loss of rice imports from Burma (that had been conquered by the Japanese); British violence in West Bengal that impaired rice production, storage and availability; British seizure of local food stocks; British seizure and destruction of Bengali boats crucial for income generation and food distribution (a measure ostensibly directed against possible Japanese invasion from Burma);

      http://www.countercurrents.org/polya290911.htm

    • i think it always important to make sure that ones every utterance is not offensive to racists, and so onward to apathy and irrelevance, no one is going liberate Palestinians or Arabs other than themselves. as Giuliano Salvatore famously said, "God protect me from my friends".

  • Settlers destroy over 250 olive trees near Ramallah and over 120 trees in Nablus as olive harvest begins on the West Bank
  • Complaint alleging anti-Semitism at UC Berkeley claims Palestine activism creates 'echo' of 'Nazi regime'
  • Page Six quotes Kissinger saying, 'In 10 years, there will be no more Israel' but staffer denies it
    • "I assume that in ten years there will still be an Israeli state, since it has nuclear weapons." oh bless, thats really sweet and the USSR is eternal? The A-bomb cant save a state from its internal contradictions, as Molotov and Gremycko demonstrated atomic weapons are diplomatically neutral. USA had them USSR not, so they ignored them, Warsaw pact, iron curtain, cold war, wind of change, its in the history, who will Israel nuke and at what cost? why dont they just Nuke Ahmedinejad, sorry Khamenei sorry Iran, really why not or Beirut, there is always Mecca. Because the costs, in all terms, would be astronomical. High yield Atomic weapons are actually unusable.

  • 8 former board members of Free Gaza Movement deplore anti-Semitic messaging
    • Has Greta committed some kind of blasphemy?

      perhaps one should check with the racist international criminals what is acceptable, all the moral "capital" of the holocaust has been spent on the murder and oppression of the Palestinians, and denigration of Arabs, i couldnt careless about it and all the associated issues, let white people sort out their own problems, after all even "supporters" of the Palestinians accept that they can not aspire to rights those at the pinnacle of the racial pyramid take for granted, having a view however ill founded about history is not racism, how can it be, it may be idiotic but so what, official "Jews" have accepted as allies the most deranged sectors of the western world, irredeemably racist and obscurantist, i dont think it makes sense to run after them, they have already sealed their own fate and it aint going to be pretty, I for one dont feel any need to accept the disney version of WW2 history or any other, all the victims of that conflagration should be mourned equally, the carnage wreaked on the MENA and India etc are rarely acknowledged, or the ongoing deaths in Egypt from the anti-Rommel mine fields unremarked at all, i have never seen the Holocaust deployed in any way other than to excuse or minimize on going crimes of the western powers or Israel, "Never Stop" rather than "Never Again".

      the whole greatest crime in history meme is deeply anti-human, just recently the UK has slyly admitted some horrific crimes re: Mau Mau, but you know it wasnt the Holocaust, which we opposed so you know cut them some slack..... if you've a mind to. I feel the need to blaspheme any inhuman orthodoxy, are testes in short supply nowadays (excuse the implicit sexism, or not, who cares anymore, it is utterly ridiculous, a little Jewish self reflection wouldnt do any harm, the Holy War and its attendant myths are pretty threadbare now, the west has no moral authority at all, thank god its so well armed, eh!)

  • The US legacy of Bagram prison
    • yes i was not being funny, except unintentionally, doppelgangers do exist and Afghans and Pakistanis come in an entertaining kaleidoscope of colours and physiognomies, as one Jean Charles de Menezes found to his cost. wonderful article really inspiring, except the end, people do not just fight oppression out of hate and anger, cf "we teach life sir!", otherwise they would soon be exhausted. The jacket gave me confidence who else but a selfless servant of justice would wear such a thing.

    • also i meant Clive Stafford Smith, Max is a theatre director, so its all pretty confusing, could of course just be Hamidullahs Dad. Smith made a great documentary about the execution of an almost certainly innocent young black man in the USA, its very good and worth watching, he tracks down the man very likely responsible for the crime and has a tense interview with him in which the likely killer manages to be both charming and threatening.

    • obviously "their lands" in 4th line from end.

    • firstly while i am willing to believe that the first picture is of Hamidullah's father and that he is the spitting image of Max Stafford Clarke the wonderful British human rights lawyer i suspect that is in fact Max.

      "are so filled with hate they may still grow into that terrorist label we gave them." right so one could say that those who opposed (sorry to use this analogy but it is a symptom of the moral illiteracy of many westerners that this is only way to make the point) the Nazi occupation of the lands and oppression of their people were merely motivated by "hate", the abuses you relate not with standing? do you not see that many people are motivated by love and a desire to protect their loved ones and community from this barbarity. Fighting foreign occupiers does make one a terrorist, except to likes of Klaus Barbie.

  • Free Gaza Movement Twitter controversy leads Jewish Voice for Peace to distance itself from group
    • yes, i am spartacus, along with anyone else with any self respect.

      you know there is something truly revolting about Jews most of whom have lived their lives in luxurious security equating themselves with the victims not only of quite virulent Euro/American racism and discrimination but Palestinians, you have got to be kidding right, and as to talking scat about Islam your Islamic victims are in the several million you ignorant dolts, ah but that is empire as Che observed its in its nature to "turn men into beasts", you US Jews are not this side of the racial divide, you are on the right side of the tracks, so spare us the whining and take some responsibility, that you can equate this Greta shit with what any black teenager in the states has been through is laughable, you people are becoming a joke, I could recommend Herbert Musils "Man Without Qualities", its a whole trilogy, but you'd probably think that song was about you too.

    • "We are sensitive to racism against Arabs and Muslims here;"
      i think one of great problems with the current situation in American discourse is that you may well believe this wonderfully affirming notion, I am not so sure.
      While being sensitive to racism against Arabs, it is still possible for committed anti-racists to support the destruction of Arab states and the slaughter of their people and leaders in a way that would be unthinkable of either Israel or any European nation.
      We have people wondering whether to support the Syrian rebels, you yourself staunchly supporting the destruction of the Libyan state, on the grounds that those who remain will be better off, I presume, in some mystical way, while not even bothering to look at the life enjoyed by Libyans under the former regime, and weighing this against the probability that the social goods enjoyed by Libyans are likely to decline for sometime to come before any advances and are hardly likely ever to return to pre-liberation levels, i have no illusions about the nature of that former state having worked in association with one of their ministries for nearly thirty years. Is it racism to believe that nations can summed up as Saddam Hussien or Muammar Khadaffi or Ahmadinejad?

      For instance would it be a case of anti-Arab racism if I were to point out that some of the most dedicated servants of empire and propagators of racist tropes aimed at Arabs are Arabs, that the domination of the middle east would be near impossible without a cohort of compradors, that Arabs have been in the fore front of the intellectual, bureaucratic and cultural war waged on the middle eastern masses, often under the rubric of anti-fundamentalism, developmentalism/modernization or some other such nostrums.

      Is it anti-Russian racism to believe that America and her allies defeated Nazism, with only a passing mention of Marshal Zukhov and the Red Army?

      If one reads and discusses Zundel and Leucher does that make one a racist?

      If one believes that Arabs and Muslims protest about abuse of religious symbols rather than protesting slaughter and the drone program of assassination, the derogation of their rights or that the recipients of this oppression might in their own minds link the two, is one a racist?

      What is most surprising is that an America which valorizes free speech also has a number of taboo's which if one even approaches one finds oneself anathematized, did Berlin advance the ideas of the no doubt racist promoter of the site she cites, could someone produce a creed we could recite prior to any utterance so as to protect ourselves from unwitting racism, if such is actually possible.

      Isnt one of the problems here the near religious awe in which the whole ww2 story is held in the west, does anyone notice what France, the Netherlands and the UK did in their own imperial possessions after the defeat of Nazism, would it be racist to point out that they adopted policies very similar to the ones that were followed by their erstwhile enemies in Europe?

  • Vidal stuck by dual loyalty charge against Podhoretzes to the end
    • wouldnt "a Zionist" live in Palestine, like say Abba Eban, who gave up a glittering Oxbridge (double first) gilded career to live in Israel, how so a zionist?

  • Sold-out Russell Tribunal on Palestine wraps up in New York
    • i mean it is odd isn't it that instead of promoting the partition plan borders, and population returns, as envisaged in the UN plan, much lauded but never advanced seriously, we now hear that the first land grab and ethnic cleansing be ratified as the basis for a solution. It being assumed that while non-Europeans can experience a loss, even if totally unjust, what has once been grabbed by 'white' persons (cf that Tunisian Israeli minister) has to remain in their possession, any solution is going to require real Zionist sacrifices, oh well I suppose not South Africa is after all 'solved', with no inconvenience to the Anglo-American corps and such like. Anyway endless war makes for interesting history but a crap and unhappy lives.

    • "No impartiality can be expected from participants like Alice." impartiality is not what anyone aspires to in struggles against racist settler colonial movements.

  • American Jewish relationship with Israel is debated at New School
    • edit function not working so incoherent mess above will have to do, just to say that i have immense respect for NF and PW and your good self whatever differences, they are only little things, really all our troubles are little more than flimsy mental constructions, of course for me that also goes for the Hasbara crew and the Tsahal who are whatever they say and do my sacred bretheren deserving of love and respect, in fact it is my obligation from my point of view and quite natural also, people are wonderful even if they espouse BTK type politics, plain speaking never hurt anyone and if it does it is great opportunity for them to progress, so thanks for taking the time to respond it is very much appreciated, just as with my interactions with Mr. Wright i am quite truthfully honoured, and in no little way blessed.

    • No David it was not you who said but that i thought, either NF or PW quoting NF, I am puzzled thats all, not as a rhetorical trick, are Egypts recognized borders and its existence within the same a principle of International Law, i wouldnt have thought so but then i know little about such things, International Law as China Mieville argues is pretty much what the powerful say it is, so perhaps it is, it just sounds strange. Sure i get what you are saying, states in existence etc, however other principles of International Law such as the ROR, need to be implemented or the state is in contravention of said principles and should be compelled to adhere to them, if we are going to wield the Law, its blade cuts both ways. If it was you who used that construction i didnt notice, i know what you mean it make sense in that way, but obviously those wronged, in the sense that prior fundamental principles of Law can take precedence, by this process need not feel any obligation to respect International Law, I mean what are we going to do them put them all in an open air prison, expel them from their homes and ignore their unreasonable reasonableness in suing for peace, IL while not necessarily an ass sure is a donkey.

    • cool a winner has been declared! its not about picking a preferred solution, its not up to anna norman noam or anyone else, or you, in all this talk of legal this and that i cant help but recall the start of that traditional old song John Barelycorn

      "There were three men came out of the west, their fortunes for to try
      And these three men made a solemn vow
      John Barleycorn must die"

      everyone is in such a hurry to write off the Palestinians, and delimit their restoration, and out of mawkish emotionality to recommend their surrender, let me tell you my Israeli military friends have told me a very different story, after 100 years of apalling and escalating abuse the Palestinians not only remain unbroken, even though everything has been destroyed, most preciously their unity, but still they not only abide but can mount resistance with nothing, i still think Noah Cohen is last the word in Palestinian solidarity and advocacy, no one else even comes close, god bless him and the New England committee.

      and in the same manner after mounting abuse "John Barleycorn proved the strongest man at last" stevie winwood and traffic did good version of it, it always put me in mind of Palestine.

      http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/t/traffic/john_barleycorn.html

    • "Israel’s existence inside the 67 borders is a principle of int’l law." right i am genuinely confused, a principle of IL would be say the self determination of peoples, the right citizenship in ones customary home, how can the existence of Israel in whatever borders or at all be a "principle" of anything states are adventitious things, was the existence of the USSR a principle of international law, i am not sure i know what you are talking about.

    • "conforming with international law;" how so by what conception of international "law" can people be robbed of rights? and inalienable human rights at that.

  • Vicious Friday attacks on Al Aqsa
    • "Arab rulers who only see the threat of Shi'ism in the region, not a single stone tossed by Muslims that were enraged by a 14 minute youtube clip," what including the Shi'i Arabs, rulers or otherwise, ah and that old chestnut about the video, perhaps you could have sister site telling Arabs what they should be protesting about, it was all peace on the Arab street, till that video, you can hardly contain that contempt, even if it is largely baseless, and what of US blacks all that burning and looting over the late Rodney King, and yet nothing about the racialised justice system and didnt Harlem burn after Birth of a Nation, perhaps they are just expressing their inferiority, what do you think? what do you think are the dynamics of protest, tell me when was the last time US white/jewish populations brought down their goverments, or caused them to abandon key policy objectives? we could no doubt learn from your example.

  • New ad describing Palestinian dispossession hits Metro-North, NY
    • "at inflated prices that the Jews eagerly paid to get their hands on the land but this represented a very small portion of the land acquired by the Jews legally."

      i wish i had my library to hand. In the JNF by Davis there is recorded the story of a land owner forced by a British Officer, who is quite squeamish about the process accompanied by an intense official of the JNF, to sell a parcel of land. The owner refuses all inducements until he is finally forced into agreeing a sale at a vastly inflated price, the JNF official then records the Arab took him aside and complaining that though he had no desire to sell the land the agreed price was ridiculous and that he could not in good conscience take such a sum for it and proposed a far lower price, the JNF official, from whose diary the story was taken, then gloats that in such a way the Yishuv was saved many thousands of pounds, the louche officer remarks that the Arab reminds him of the prophet Amos.

    • "However residency/settling in occupied Palestine as Israeli citizens, even if one is non-Jewish, is illegal under International Law and conventions." absolutely.

      And in the context of the settlement of Palestine, land sales become a very different thing, it is a universal truth in such struggles many people become exhausted and the attempts to deter land "sale" by individuals to occupier/colonizers become increasingly brutal as the level of desperation and oppression become more intense. It is reminiscent of that tragic part of Guevara's "Venceremos" where he describes the "justice" meted out to those intimidated in to giving information to Batista's forces during the Cuban revolution, there is no easy way out for those who mount resistance, as they used to tell recruits to the IRA, "you are opting for death" and one might add not just your own. Hence the practice of injustice and in particular settler colonialism is an especially vile activity, whose ramifications are utterly devastating to all involved.

    • you need to read the Jewish National Fund by Uri Davis.

      i have copy in the UK it seems hard to come by now, it may clarify what sale meant at the time, including those by "absentee landlords" basically two Lebanese, one was called Sursuq, i forget the others name, tax farmers, who became "owners" with the march of globalisation, the Turkish Majlis refused to enact laws preventing sale of land to foreigners, proposed by Palestinian representatives, arguing, not unreasonably at the time, that all countries have laws allowing the sale of land to non-nationals, desperate as they were to keep up with international developments, who, at the time could have known where it would lead, also don't know about glossing things over most Arabs i know don't have a problem with it, people have the right to dispose of their property as they see fit, Germans and many other Europeans had bought farms etc in Palestine, in the JNF Davis records many instances of forced "sales" under British management, anyway real estate is not territory, why shouldn't Jews own land in Palestine?

  • Israelis celebrating Sukkot beat Palestinians worshipers
    • how about the about 10,000 who were evicted to make way for the plaza, could they return to the sites of their property, or would that interfere with Jews worshiping a bit of Roman masonry.

  • The cycle of violence-- set to 'Exodus' anthem
    • except of course the claims of those who own Palestine, leaving aside "exclusive claims", the claims of modern nation states are pretty exclusive arent they, when my current visa expires i shall to leave where i am at the moment inconvenient for me but its the same everywhere i have the right to live in the schengen region but would rather not so move is what i do no complaints ,

      as Ismail says this is the plague on all their houses evasion isnt it. Palestine like the Syria of which it is a part have had an essentially stable population for millenia, not that is particularly relevant to anything of interest, but not even educated Zionists contest this anymore, all that genetic mumbo jumbo was abandoned because it failed to show that Palestinians were all Arabian interlopers, again not sure what that would mean if true, Is there anywhere that has not been contested, telescoping 4000 years of history of anywhere would produce something like this wouldnt it?
      another rousing call to apathy.

    • ah since beheading has become a little topical on another thread its worth pointing that Palestinian society was beheaded by both the British and their allies the Zionists, actually pretty much like Iraqi society and the on-going liberation of a progressively more headless Syrian society, its probably true that Arab intellectuals and notables are better off dead, or at least better when dead what is that frontier aphorism coined by Sherman "the only good indians i saw were...."

  • 'Peace Now' video against binational state features scary soundtrack: Muslim call to prayer
    • "multicultural welfare statism." what is that?
      and
      what is "multicultural" about this "welfare statism"?

      sorry its very small of me but i have to say the "there is no compunction inreligion," is a classic, perhaps true sadly, really made me laugh from al-baqarra no doubt, but which ayat.

    • why just look at South Africa its all sorted now blacks dont suffer from racism, now its social pathology, sorted for justice and harmony, its not what you do to people its what you call it that matters, say law and order and poverty is never the result of fundamental injustice, its a personal failing, one state will be like that shining city on hill the USA, where equality fraternity and neo-liberalism rule, much to the chagrin of us anti-white denialist mishlings ( arabic: hajeen).

  • In front of global audience, Netanyahu draws his red line (on his ridiculous bomb cartoon)
    • "and it tends toward the same end.

      Wholesale slaughter."

      ecce homo, truer words are rarely spoken. crown of thorns and all.

  • 'Savage' NY subway ads get a make-over-- revealing their true character
    • "Do you think Netanyahu’s people would actually be caught having a meeting with Geller?"
      I recon you might be amazed by this the BBC's Ernie Rea's, "Beyond Belief" discusses Islam in America with a Mr. D. Pipes and one P.Geller. I know Ernie and participated in what was described as his best eva episode, a Priest implored me to preach at his Church during it ( and I am no less bogus/ersatz than Ms Geller), but then Ernie et al made this: Islam in America

  • Morsi repeatedly stresses Palestinian issue in interview with the NYT
    • no you are right Colin in a pleasingly reductive way, no i absolutely accept that given the choices on offer they prefer Isalmists but what does it mean? and you know full well about your burden i feel you under me supporting me, so that i can almost reach an almosr fully human level of rationality, if only you were a touch stronger and i was touch taller why i could almost reach a kind of full humanity, its no worries Colin, i myself would have voted, as did many of thousands of "cousins" (i am a member of tribe, to whom i am fiercely loyal) for the Ikhwan, because they provide services and cheap clothes shops and Medical services to the poor, as to religious motivations well if you know nothing of Egypt i suppose its persuasive, tell me do you think that the Meeja, from whom you draw your sense of Egytpian society is entirely trust worthy.

      i know i have been needling you but you are so charming in your WASPish confidence, whats an untermensh to do? actually the MB are the best option available to the common folk, i am an Egyptian citizen but i didnt vote because those of us who are abroad weren't asked for our views, i would vote for them not out of Islamic fervor but because the other choices are well, not so good, really when push comes to shove the other buggers represent very narrow class interests, anyway i am quite willing to concede as you have both logic and all that comes with it on your side, however as you probably sense Egytpians are inveterate consumers of river fish and would pickle every Salmon from here (melbourne australia) to Alberta given half a chance, so its no surprise that they are also religious obscurantists. Seriously i do think its a pity, many of my cousins are what one would call lower middle class and petty bourgeois who are Ikhwan supporters for reasons quiet desperation, many others are subsistence farmers, the latter lament that there are no communist candidates as they recall the glorious Soviet Union which still has a good reputation amongst the lowest rungs of Egyptian society, if no where else but i defer to your reading comprehension skills, wtf do i know. I am not in anyway embarrased by their religiosity, nor do i have any reason to worry about their choices, while not perhaps as clubable as yer average WASP they are ok in my book. strngely you seem unable to understand a few very simple notions. and my sri lankan irish friend of 14 says Samudra says "HI"

    • and finally the essence of spirituality is the insight that we do not exist in the manner that we feel we do, the Muhammad, of the Sira and the Quran and Hadith, has no personality, no essentially stable seperate entity in the sense of being utterly empty ( sankrit: shunya) he exists only as the nexus of others needs and concerns. perfectly captured in poem 11 of 'arabi's tarjuman al awshaq (the interpretation of yearning)

      My heart can take on any form:
      A meadow for gazelles,
      A cloister for monks,
      For the idols, sacred ground,
      Ka'ba for the circling pilgrim,
      The tables of the Torah,
      The scrolls of the Quran.

      My creed is Love;
      Wherever its caravan turns along the way,
      That is my belief,
      My faith.

      or that great Alim (er.. Scholar i come from a branch of the faith which regards scholar as a perjorative) Jalaludin Balkhi aka Rumi, who wrote the Mathnawi known as the Quran in Persian:

      This World Which is Made From Our Love of Emptiness

      Praise to the emptiness that blanks out existence.
      Existence: this place made from our love
      for that emptiness!

      Yet somehow comes emptiness,
      this existence goes.
      Praise to that happening over and over.

      For years I pulled my own existence out of emptiness.
      Then one swoop, one swing of the arm,
      that work is over.
      Free of who I was, free of presence, free
      of dangerous fear, hope, free
      of mountainous wanting.

      These words I am saying so much begin to lose meaning.
      Existence, emptiness, mountain, straw.
      Words and what they try to say,
      swept out the window, down the slant of the roof.

      if you really are interested in the essence of religion you could do worse than start with Joanna Macy's "Dharma of Natural Systems", it is the opening for our times, and then perhaps Longchenpas "The Basic space of Phenomena".

      Once Nasrrudin decided to visit India on foot from his Afghani home, in the days when the Chilli had just been introduced to India from South America, crossing into Kashmir he became hungry and thirsty, but as ever having little money he kept his eyes open for any oppportunity to assuage his hunger and thirst. Seeing a man selling bright red juicy looking fruits by the side of the road, he inquired the cost of one of them, he was amazed at how cheap they were and realised that he could easily afford to buy the whole basket for a pittance, handing over a few coins he sat down to eat, after some time a passing Hindu saw him sweating profusely having himself become bright red and emitting copious amounts of snot almost choking and gasping taking pity on him the Hindu exclaimed "Dont you know the Chillis of Kashmir man! if you eat all those you will surely die" miserably Nasrudin exclaimed "I am not eating Chilli's, I am eating my money". this can you believe is a spiritual tale make of it what you will.

    • Walid sorry about the intemperate rudeness no offence meant its just been a long time talking about this stuff, no excuses it was very wrong of me, and i have the gall to criticize others my apologies i am old and irritable. sorry. i am spoiling for fight i cant win anyway you embarrass me with your good sense no fool like an old fool please listen to sura al-balad by the incomparable abdul basit abdul samad. It has never been the habit of scholars to issue prohibitions, it wasnt historically anyway, till we went off the deep end, but it all depends what you mean by spiritual, anyway listen to this

      Abdul Basit Abdul Samad with english subtitles

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