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ERIC SOMMER: Demonizing the demon in Egypt and elsewhere

February 21, 2011 Comments off

The following commentary is reprinted with permission from Pravda, Moscow. (Emphasis added by Inteltrends.)
 

Demonizing the demon in Egypt and elsewhere
©  Eric Sommer
Source:  Pravda.ru
February 21, 2011

I was personally involved in the movement against the U.S. intervention and bombing of Yugoslavia in the late 1990’s under Clinton. At that time I coined the phrase ‘Demonizing the demons’. I did so because I noted that progressive and well-meaning people in North America were often befuddled and divided as to whether to support the demonizing of Melosovik by the U.S. government or not.

The real problem was not that Melosovik was, in fact, a demon whose government had engaged in serious human rights violations in Croatia but that he was a demon whose actions had been, in a way, supported or condoned by the U.S. state and media to some extent previously before they decided to demonize and attack him.

At that time, I pieced together the following formula used by the U.S. government and media ever since World War II as a lynchpin of U.S. foreign policy:

Step 1:  Actively support, or even instigate, the installation of a demonic dictator or semi-dictator. Especially do so in any case where there is danger of a socialist or even truly independent national government coming to power in a country.

Step 2:  Support the U.S.-supported demonic dictator by continually supplying massive amounts of military equipment or funds each for such equipment each year, to prevent any internal opposition from gaining the upper hand. Mubarak in Egypt, for example, received around 1 Billion dollars in military aid each year. Also, impose IMF or other measures designed to advantage international capital, allowing for the looting of the local resources and cheap labour at ridiculously low rates when possible, and conceal or downplay any and all resulting extreme human rights violations and impoverishment of the dictators people;

Step 3:  When it is no longer expedient to support the demonic dictator – either because internal opposition has grown too strong, or for geo-strategic or other reasons – then proclaim that he is a ‘Demonic Dictator’, ignoring the reality that he was installed and maintained in power by yourself.

This scenario of ‘Demonizing the Demon’ is the formula pursued ever since World War II by the U.S. state throughout the world.

Suharto in Indonesia, Marcos the dictator of the Philippines, Saddam Hussein in Iraq, Mubarak in Egypt, Pinochet in Chile, and many other ‘demons’ were installed with the support of the U.S. state and its CIA spy service and military aid; maintained in power by tremendous military and other non-socially-beneficial ‘aid’; and then ‘demonized’ and deposed with the help of the U.S. state when they were no longer needed.

The losers in all cases have been the ordinary people who suffered – first from the Demonic dictators, then from their removal, and then from their replacements (the new demons chosen for them by the U.S. state).

Sound exaggerated? Consider this:

The Egyptian Example

A few weeks ago the media reported on a possible successor to Mubarak in Egypt as follows: “Mohamed ElBaradei, the former United Nations nuclear chief who has become an opposition figurehead, said he would ‘serve if called on’. He earlier held his first negotiations with the American and British ambassadors, proposing potential scenarios for a transfer of power”.

Note that Mohamed ElBaradei held “negotiations” with “American and British ambassadors” for a ‘transfer of power’. Since when does a future ‘leader’ have to ‘negotiate’ with the representatives of the U.S. and British governments! Moreover, since when does a future leader need to “propose” to the representatives of two foreign powers the “scenarios for a transfer of power” in his own country!

It could not be any clearer that Mohamed ElBaradei – and the U.S. and British governments – do not really regard Egypt as a sovereign state; rather, they regard these two foreign powers as the real masters – or at least believe they should be the masters – of Egypt’s destiny.

In Egypt as elsewhere, the process of installing, propping up, and then deposing ‘demons’ is the game of U.S. foreign policy. It’s high time for the people of the world to put a stop to it.

[End.]

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Categories: CHILE, CIA, CRO, EGY, INDO, IRQ, PHL, SERBIA, USA, WORLD

RUSSIAN MEDIA: USA’s 2011 National Military Strategy: We’ve got the power!

February 10, 2011 Comments off

The following commentary is reprinted with permission from Pravda, Moscow.
 

USA’s 2011 National Military Strategy:  We’ve got the power!
©  Pravda.ru
By Sergei Balmasov
February 10, 2011

The USA has unveiled the 2011 National Military Strategy for the first time in seven years. The strategy, as usual, serves for the preservation of the U.S. predominance in the world. The appearance of the document is based on recent major changes on the planet. The authors of the strategy pointed out a number of challenges for the United States in particular and for the Western civilization in general.

U.S. strategists claimed that the shortage of resources in the world may trigger territorial disputes, which poses a direct threat to American interests. They are also concerned about the fact that the national debt of the United States “poses a significant national security risk.”

All of that is aggravated with a whole list of unsolved problems, which have become even more serious during the recent years. First and foremost, “the world’s preeminent power” has not been able to defeat terrorism and extremism. The war in Afghanistan continues, and the fire of Afghan unrest is spreading into neighboring Pakistan. The strategists of the U.S. national security wrote that terrorists had nested on the Arabian Peninsula, in the countries of north-western Africa and in Somalia.

Nevertheless, the authors of the document said: “We will be prepared to find, capture, or kill violent extremists wherever they reside when they threaten interests and citizens of America and our allies.” Therefore, it is not ruled out that the world will soon witness the USA launching another military adventure in the above-mentioned territories.

Secondly, the USA is concerned about the rising powers, India and China, as well as other regional powerful countries. The Americans are especially worried about China and its defense preparations in the Taiwan Strait.

In this connection, the Pentagon is not going to reduce its attention to South Asia and the Far East. However, the USA does not exclude increasing its military presence in potentially dangerous directions. “With partner nation support, we will preserve forward presence and access to the commons, bases, ports, and airfields commensurate with safeguarding our economic and security interests worldwide,” the strategy runs. Here, it goes about such old allies as Japan and South Korea.

Thirdly, the nuclear proliferation issue remains unsolved as well. North Korea has proved the possession of nuclear weapons to the whole world. Iran is just about to do the same. “The prospect of multiple nuclear armed regimes in the Middle East with nascent security and command and control mechanisms amplifies the threat of conflict, and significantly increases the probability of miscalculation or the loss of control of a nuclear weapon to non-state actors,” the document says.

To solve the problem, Washington intends to support regional allies, like Iraq, to develop the missile defense system, which Russia vehemently objects to, and to take defense measures against those violating the nuclear non-proliferation regime. The USA must be prepared to eliminate sources of weapons of mass destruction, the document runs.

Fourthly, by 2025, Washington predicts serious destabilization in a number of developing states because of the ongoing demographic explosion. The population of those countries will grow by 1.2 billion people, which will lead to serious food and water problems. “Conversely, in Europe and parts of Asia, populations are projected to decline and age with long term impacts to the global share of their economic output. Population growth and urbanization in the Middle East, Africa, and South Central Asia will contribute to increased water scarcity and may present governance challenges,” the report says.

In other words, the American supremacy is facing many challenges on different continents. One shall pay attention to the following telling phrase: “In this multi-nodal world, the military’s contribution to American leadership must be about more than power – it must be about our approach to exercising power.”

Thus, the U.S. National Military Strategy must be flexible to take account of all serious changes in the world. That is why the USA must be prepared to dealing with modern-day challenges without allies’ help.

“Let us not forget, the Nation remains at war abroad to defend against and defeat threats to our homeland. Our foremost priority is the security of the American people, our territory, and our way of life.” “We will pursue deliberate acquisition process improvements and selective force modernization with the cost effective introduction of new equipment and technology,” the report says.

U.S. strategists point out the necessity to maintain high prestige of the U.S. Armed Forces. According to the document, the state must continue to pay increased attention to improving the well-being of its defenders. “Just as our Service members commit to the Nation when they volunteer to serve, we incur an equally binding pledge to return them to society as better citizens. We must safeguard Service members’ pay and benefits, provide family support, and care for our wounded warriors,” the report runs.

Needless to say that the Americans could not leave Russia out of their attention. On the one hand, the document declares the intention to develop military partnership, continue the reduction of arms and build security in Central Asia in cooperation with Russia. As for the Asian security, the Americans, most likely, are planning to get Russia involved in the Afghan war.

The new strategy also mentions more important things about Russia. For instance, the USA is going to continue its cooperation with Canada regarding the issues of regional security, such as the development of the Arctic region. It is an open secret that Russia claims its right on the Arctic shelf, which infuriates Canada in the first place.

Here is another, rather expressive statement: “NATO members act as a stabilizing force on its perimeter, which ranges from the Middle East and the Levant, Northern Africa, the Balkans, and the Caucasus.” One shall assume that the Americans will continue to interfere in Russia’s internal affairs.

The authors of the new National Military Strategy are certain that the USA will preserve its economic and defense power in the foreseeable future. The USA still places its stake on brutal military force, which, as the authors of the report say, will contribute to America’s security and prosperity in the 21st century.

[End.]

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Categories: AFG, CAN, CHN, DPRK, IND, IRN, IRQ, JAP, NATO, PAK, RUS, S.KOR, SOM, TAI, USA, WORLD

STANISLAV MISHIN: How the Muslim Brotherhood Saved the U.S. Dollar

January 30, 2011 Comments off

The following column is reprinted with permission from Stanislav Mishin, a regular contributor to Russian newspaper Pravda.
 

How the Muslim Brotherhood Saved the U.S. Dollar
©  Stanislav Mishin
Source:  Mat Rodina
January 30, 2011

There are two truths that the Anglo Elites know all too well: democracy in the West means a ruling oligarchy with good PR, democracy in the Middle East means Islamic Jihadists and Fundamentalists. This has been a fact for many years and is not, in any way a shock or disconnect for any of the American elites now backing “democracy” revolutions.

1.  Iranian revolution, 1978-1979: Mass protests by a wide coalition against the King. Result? Mullahs take over.

2.  Egypt has free parliamentary elections. Results? The Muslim Brotherhood becomes the second most powerful party in the country, before being quickly banned.

3.  Americans allow free elections in Iraq. Results? Islamist parties become the main power blocks in power.

4.  Palestinians have free elections: Voters protest against corrupt regime. Result? Hamas is now running the Gaza Strip.

5.  Beirut Spring: Christians, Sunni Muslims, and Druze unite against Syrian control. Moderate government gains power. Result? Hezbollah is now the main political force in Lebanon.

6.  Algeria holds free elections: Voters back moderate Islamist group. Result? Military coup; Islamists turn (or reveal their true thinking) radical; tens of thousands of people killed.

Quite simply, the majority of the population has an insane infatuation with extremist Islam, be it Shiite or Sunni. Again, none of this is a surprise to the owners of the Anglo sphere. So why are they so actively backing revolutions and over throws throughout the Middle East?

Already a revolution has swept out the sectarian dictator of Tunisia, with Islamists quickly moving in. Exiled leader of Tunisian Islamist party returning to role in ‘new era of democracy’.

Protests, demonstrations and revolutions have now spread to Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Albania, Yemen and Saudi Arabia. Egypt is by far, the worst hit, with the government teetering, mass looting and violence becoming the norm and the Muslim Brotherhood riding high.

All of this, of course is nothing new, it is a rehash of past and present events. So, my astute readers are now asking, again, why are the Anglo Elites servicing these revolutions and how will this save the U.S. dollar, or at least stave off its death for a few more years?

To answer that one must understand that to be a vassal, er, an ally of the Anglos is worse than to be an enemy. At least an enemy knows where he stands, while an ally will be used and when his or her utilization has reached its max, will be betrayed, back stabbed and sold out as best suits the Anglos, be it an Irishman or a Half Arab who sits in the Oval Office.

So now the time has come for a new round of betrayals, to prop up the USD at the expense of allies. You see, dear reader, the U.S. dollar is the exchange currency for Oil and Gas and the higher the price, the more the USD is demanded. The more that is demanded, to buy the more expensive oil and gas, the more debt currency the U.S. private Federal Reserve gets to print up and drop off on the world, allowing for accumulation of real resources, worth real value, as well as continuing pointless Marxist programs and the off-shoring of American hyper inflation to the rest of humanity.

This is nothing new. The U.S. ‘colour revolutions’ were used in the Central Asian states, to create havoc in areas adjacent to oil. The first was in Uzbekistan, where the socialist dictator and U.S. ally, Karimov, has been designated for removal by a U.S.-sponsored Islamic revolution. Unfortunately for the Americans, Karimov had no problem massacring the American paid for revolutionaries. He followed this by ousting the U.S. base on his lands and running to Moscow for protection.

The U.S. dollar did not get its intended boost in the Central Asian territories, at that time, however, the Americans did not give up. Even if a revolution fails in the directly affected area, one can be staged in an adjacent area which will lead to further instability in the intended area, thus driving up the price of oil and gas. To that end, the Americans created and backed the civil war in Tajikistan, where Uzbeki fanatics, in the south of the country now have defacto rule and will export their jihad to their own mother country, thus ensuring high levels of instability for decades to come.

To that same end, the Americans are backing the revolutions on the periphery of the main oil fields of the Middle East, in full knowledge that this will spill further and further into the oil producing regions. That is the plan, after all.

Tunisia, itself, a small time oil producer, accounts for 40,000 barrels/day.

Algeria and Yemen have also faced mass protests, funded and organized by Western NGOs, even as the owners of those NGOs pretend to be sympathetic to the rulers of the countries in question. However, as in Uzbekistan, these rulers have and will continue to respond with massive force, making sure that their U.S.-sponsored, home grown Islamics do not get very far. In Yemen, early Sunday, the government arrested Tawakul Karman, a prominent journalist and member of the Islamist party Isiah. He had organized protests through text messages and emails. All of the Western press are playing their roll, screaming to the high heavens about this Islamic fundamentalist’s follow on release and her love of freedom, even though Fundamentalist Islam believes in Sharia and has no freedom, other than the right to murder unbelievers.

Jordan, one of the most stable regional powers, has also been rocked by protests, as more than 5,000 people took to the streets, demanding the King give up his power, to “the people”.

Egypt has not been so lucky. Its government has proven, so far, to be weak, with many in the military openly siding with the Islamic Brotherhood and its Western NGO backers. Looting in the streets is rampant, as is direct confrontation with those special police forces, and special forces, still loyal to the dictatorship. The end is only a matter of time.

Egypt itself is responsible for the production of 680,000 barrels of oil per day. While this is about 1-2% of the world total output, Egypt further plays a massive role, with the Suez Canal and the alternate Surned pipeline, of passing an additional 1 million barrels of crude bound for the European and American markets. It is bad enough with the Somali pirates pushing up the price of oil, or why do you think that a trigger-happy America willing to invade just about anyone it can, including once upon a time Somalia, suddenly is too timid to deal with a bunch of rag tag pirates?

Other protests have erupted in Morocco, Libya, Lebanon and even Albania. All around the edges of the major oil players.

More worrisome than disruptions to Egypt’s oil production is the prospect that the unrest spreads to other hard-line states in the region, such as Libya and Algeria, both members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). Other countries in the region, including Tunisia and Yemen, have been wracked by anti-government protests in recent weeks, though neither is a major oil producer.

“If this thing spreads across the North African continent, gets into Libya, Algeria, then you’ve got trouble,” said Stephen Schork, editor of the Schork Report energy newsletter.

Finally, this whole process is now spilling into Saudi Arabia and soon possibly into the whole of the Gulf princedoms. The oil shocks will be profound and will be quick.

Already, with just the Egyptian upheavals, and as expected, just on the Thursday and Friday violence, oil went up over 4%, some $3.70 per barrel. Another similar rise can be expected this week, if not higher. When, not if, Mubarak’s government falls, oil should be expected to hit close to the $100 mark. With Nigeria also sinking into civil war, oil may well peak over $100/barrel by the end of February.

The American media and their other Western underlings and affiliates, are doing their part in colouring these as peoples’ fights for freedom and human rights. Of course they know full well what this will lead to: Islamic fundamentalism, which is the only result that this has ever led to. Then when this happens, when the correct end result is in place, those very same self-serving hypocrites, will throw up their hands and declare that they are shocked that those stupid, dirty Arabs could not make any go of “freedom” even after all the help they were given.

The Americans have been preparing for this for years. Many foolishly blame this on Obama, he is a part of this, but his is only the final chapter in the preparation for one of the last ditch efforts to stave off Judgment Day of the U.S. dollar and its debt built and house of cards economy.

“What happened in Georgia with the Rose Revolution and Orange Revolution in Ukraine in 2003-2004 was part of a long-term strategy orchestrated by the Pentagon, the State Department and various U.S.-financed NGOs like Freedom House and National Endowment for Democracy to create pro-NATO regime change in those former Soviet Union areas and to literally encircle Russia,” author and researcher William Engdahl told RT.

“What is going on in the Middle East with the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia that we saw a few days ago, and now in Egypt with Mubarak in his 80s, and obviously a regime that is not exactly the most stable one, we have a food crisis taking place as a backdrop and the IMF coming and telling these countries to eliminate their state food subsidies so you have, of course, the explosive background for popular unrest. Within that you have these NGOs, like Freedom House, training activists and trade unions and various other organizations to demand democracy, demand human rights and so forth,” he added.

This earlier report by RT [“TV Novosti”] sums the process up even better:

Dr. William Robinson is one of the foremost experts on Washington’s democracy promotion initiatives, he wrote the book ‘Promoting Polyarhcy.’

“In Latin America, in Eastern Europe with the Velvet Revolutions, in Africa, in the Middle East, really all over the world, the U.S. set up these different mechanisms now for penetrating these civil societies in the political systems of countries that are going to be intervened and to assure the outcome is going to be pleasing to Washington’s foreign policy objectives,” said Robinson.

Lawrence Wilkerson, the former Chief of Staff to former Secretary of State Colin Powell said, “We do this through surrogates and non-governmental organization and through people who are less suspecting of the evil that may lurk behind their actions than perhaps they were before. Have we learned some lessons in that regard? You bet! Do we do it better? You bet! Is it still just as heinous as it has always been? You bet!”

The Americans call this process Creative Destruction, that is the new catch phrase for world revolutions, no different than that which was exported from our own country while it was ruled by Anglo financed Marxists. While the PR may be promising and alluring, the results will be misery and death for those in ground zero: with tourism and industry fleeing fundamentalist regimes, resulting in yet more starvation and poverty, and a massive enrichment for the top 1% of the Anglo elite who could not give a bigger damn, no matter what their fully owned media mouth pieces may be saying.

The massive increases in the price of oil, as well as the increased demand for weapons by those states who border these areas, will line the pockets of thousands of executives and politicians in America, and to a smaller level, of England, for decades to come. If a war or three are spawned from this, even better.

Furthermore, with refugees and terrorism flooding Europe, which is finally starting to react violently to the virus that is attacking the body social at large, and the confiscation of European industry in Northern Africa, the Euro will be on the front lines of these new Islamic plagues, like never before. It will take another beating, with the dollar remaining a “safe” investment. Just another big plus, not to mention the new missions for NATO and that military-industrial complex, this will generate.

As for the American serfs, the little people? Well, the $6-10/gallon ($1.50-$2.25/liter) gasoline will crush them. Sure, the socialist welfare programs that their government will finance by selling yet more dollars, will help some, but it is a mild treatment for a terminal disease. Their falling wages, in the face of mass and growing unemployment as well as soaring inflation, will drag the last of the middle class into poverty and slavery. However, unlike the Arabs or the French or most other people of the world, they will do what their British cousins have been doing for the past 30 years, put up a stiff upper lip and accept this as their reality. And yes, as before, for the world at large, their owners in NYC, DC and London, could not really give a bigger damn.

A passive people, believing in their own illusionary freedoms and high on their own self importance, make for the best slaves and no where are there more such slaves than in the USA.

The rest of us will also have to live with an ever more violent world, courtesy of the biggest sponsor of Islamic insanity the world has ever had the sorry state of knowing.

[End.]

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Categories: ALB, ALG, EGY, EUR, IRN, IRQ, JOR, LEB, LIB, MOR, NATO, PAL, RUS, SAU, SOM, Stanislav Mishin, SYR, TAJ, TUN, USA, UZB, WORLD, YEM

Uncertain World: Terrorism’s local roots

January 27, 2011 Comments off

The following column is reprinted with permission from RIA Novosti.
 

Uncertain World:  Terrorism’s local roots
©  RIA Novosti
By Fyodor Lukyanov
January 27, 2011

International terrorism was at the forefront of global politics in the first decade of this young century. The concept is actually relatively new.

After the September 11 attacks shook America to its core, the Bush administration declared war on “international terrorism” and sought to enlist others in the cause. This was initially intended to serve as the organizing principle for a new international system. But really it was the same good-versus-evil dichotomy, with international terrorism taking the place once occupied by the Soviet threat.

It seemed at first that they might succeed. The broad coalition in the “war on terror” overthrew the Taliban in Afghanistan and drove them out of Kabul. But this was the high watermark for the coalition.

There was a design flaw in the war on terror. A global counterterrorism campaign must be comprehensive and rooted in cooperation, but the United States ended up using it as a tool to maintain global dominance. That drive toward dominance included exerting pressure – hard and soft – on other countries to follow America’s lead. But no one likes to be pressured.

Washington’s dubious motivation was only part of the problem. Many began to doubt that “international terrorism” really existed as a distinct phenomenon.

In the era of globalization, we are more interconnected and interdependent than ever before. The “martyrs” are no longer confined to the Middle East. They are found on the Moscow subway system and at Russian airports. However, the recent attacks in Moscow and Nalchik were not committed by the abstract international terrorists we are called on to fight. These attacks were carried out by specific Islamic groups from the Caucasus.

Terrorism today can have a global impact while still being rooted in local problems. International terrorism is, in fact, a collection of various separatist and nationalist movements. Each of these groups – in Russia, Indonesia, Sudan, Palestinian Territories, Afghanistan, China, India, Turkey or Yemen – is opposed to its respective government and calls for self-determination or the overthrow of the current regime.

Even the unprecedented attacks of September 11 were a specific extremist group’s response to U.S. ambitions in the world, which successive administrations have been pursuing since the end of the Cold War. They see America as a global empire controlling vast territories, either directly or indirectly.

As such, George W. Bush’s attempt to make international terrorism the focus of global politics was doomed from the start. First of all, the concept was overly broad and subject to various interpretations by different political leaders. Most governments tried to use the perceived terrorist threat to expand their power. U.S. intelligence agencies were granted greater authority, while Russia put an end to the direct election of regional governors.

Second, because international terrorism is a manufactured concept, it could not bring countries together to work toward a common goal. Each new country joining the coalition against international terrorism brought its own interpretation of the concept. Again, this was to be expected, as there was no common threat in actuality. Terrorists are not a monolith, even if they do share some motives and means. As a result, the war on international terrorism is at best an empty slogan and at worst a source of irritation between countries caused by the inevitable double standards.

Third, there can be no one-size-fits-all solution to terrorism, because terrorism is rooted in local grievances specific to each country.

The purpose of a major terrorist attack is to undermine a specific government, to make it look weak and ineffectual. Therefore, the initial reaction of the government is always to prove its strength by striking back with sanctioned violence.

If a quasi-state is involved, such as the self-proclaimed Chechen Republic of the late 1990s or the Taliban regime, it becomes the target of revenge. Both Russia and the United States sent in troops that ultimately succeeded in destroying the basic terrorist infrastructure in Chechnya and Afghanistan, respectively. But neither knew what to do next, when the surviving enemies fled and became ghosts in the hills, posing even greater danger.

No government has found the answer yet. The illusion of stability brought by the use of overwhelming force fades very quickly, and it becomes clear that the new, unconventional war may drag on forever. Each new act of retribution swells the ranks of the enemy.

Eliminating the roots of terrorism is a long and complex process with no guarantee of success. The United States learned this lesson in the deserts of Iraq and Afghanistan. Russia learned it in the mountains of the Caucasus. America can at least leave these foreign lands when the situation becomes unbearable, although the terrorists could strike again on U.S. soil. Russia is not so fortunate. Russia cannot leave the Caucasus, and so it will have to keep trying to find a balance between suppression and development in its fight against terrorism.

[End.]
__________

Fyodor Lukyanov is Editor-in-Chief of the Russia in Global Affairs journal – the most authoritative source of expertise on Russian foreign policy and global developments. He is also a frequent commentator on international affairs and contributes to various media in the United States, Europe and China, including academic journals Social Research, Europe-Asia Studies, Columbia Journal of International Affairs. Mr. Lukyanov is a senior member of the Council on Foreign and Defense Policy and a member of the Presidential Council on Human Rights and Civic Society Institutions. He holds a degree from Moscow State University.

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Iraqi security forces on arrest campaign against Baaquba intellectuals

January 26, 2011 Comments off

The following article is from Iraqi newspaper Azzaman.
 

Iraqi security forces on arrest campaign against Baaquba intellectuals
©  Azzaman
By Kareem al-Zair
January 26, 2011

In a fresh crackdown, Iraqi security forces have arrested more than 100 intellectuals from the restive Province of Diyala of which Baaquba is the capital.

The crackdown comes amid reports of an upsurge in security in the province which groups resisting U.S. occupation and the current government have turned into a stronghold.

Among those arrested are four top medical professors teaching at the Diyala University’s Medical College, professors Mazen Razzouqi, Adel al-Hussaini, Ali al-Husaini and Bahaa Abed.

It is not clear why Iraqi security forces have arrested the intellectuals at a time the Diyala University suffers from severe faculty shortages.

The arrests have angered university staff and students who have demanded their immediate release.

The security forces decline to say why they have made the arrests and whether there will be any charges.

[End.]

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Categories: IRQ, USA

IRAQ: How will Muqtada Al-Sadr save Hezbollah and Syria from Hariri’s indictment?

January 17, 2011 Comments off

The following article is reprinted with permission from Roads to Iraq, intel blog.

How will Muqtada Al-Sadr save Hezbollah and Syria from Hariri’s indictment?
©  Roads to Iraq
January 16, 2011

Managed to maintain its strength among the masses, Al-Sadr employed this force to achieve political gains ahead of all the other Islamic forces, holding forty parlia­mentary seats, seven ministries, and the parliament Deputy-presidency, which made the leader of the Movement a major political player with the ability to influ­ence the overall political process.This political weight would give Muqtada Al-Sadr a semi-immunity against emergency circumstances.

The real strategic secret behind Muqtada Al-Sadr’s return to Iraq is precisely calcu­lated. We already know that Al-Sadr has a strong relation with the Syrian leader­ship, as well as a special “family, organizational and logistical” ties with Hassan Nasrallah and Hezbollah, not to mention his relation with Iran, which is for Iraqi Shi­ite politicians is the highest Shiite political reference, and a strategic ally.

The International tribunal’s decision or indictment against for the assassination of “Hariri” is very close [Monday according to the French Le Monde], especially after the failure of the initiative “Syria and Saudi Arabia” with pressure from the U.S. and France.

We already know that the indictment will accuse members of the Lebanese Hezbollah and perhaps some Syrian officials. This will put the “Lebanese-Syrian-Iranian” front in a regional declaration of war.

Since Iraq has become linked geopolitical and logistically to Lebanon and vice versa. Iraq will be affected by any development in Lebanon, and this forced Al-Sadr to return to Iraq as quick as possible, to not to leave Lebanon, Hezbollah, Syria and Iran without insurance, protection from the weak Iraqi link. At the same Hezbollah, Syria and Iran will back the Sadrist Movement within the same strategy.

Here is Iraq’s FM Zebari saying:

Iraq was following up developments of the tribunal … We are also a party in this equation. We are not absent from U.S.-Iranian relations, [Iran’s] nuclear issue, the situation in Lebanon, the tribunal’s decision or indictment and from relations with Syria.

At this point, Al-Sadr will raise the readiness of the Sadrist Movement and all its military wings to open a front against the U.S. to ease the tension on Hezbollah and Syria, if both sense the danger of U.S.-Israel military activities.

This is what the Syria newspaper Al-Watan wrote two days ago:

Washington military bases in Iraq and Afghanistan … Will collide against the Arab and Islamic forces who do not accept and resist the American military intervention.

The return of Muqtada al-Sadr is a message to the Americans in the first place to reshuffle its agenda, The U.S. tried to identify the approach adopted by al-Sadr after his return in dealing with the overall political and security situation in Iraq, cir­culating the the leader of the movement is less radical than before, despite his focus on “resisting the occupation” in his recent speech “peacefully“.

Timed after Biden’s visit and his talks with Sistani (lasted about 3 hours in pri­vate), Al-Sadr adopted the “Liwa’a Al-Youm Al-Maoud” “The Promised Day” militia today and promised to continue the fight against the Americans, saying:

“Liwa’a Al-Youm Al-Maoud” belongs to us and is not affiliated to any one else. They are obedient and ask God to grant them victory.

Washington considers “the Promised Day”, “Hezbollah in Iraq”, “Revenge of God” and the “League of the Righteous” are militias linked and funded by Iran.

Because the Sadrists feel that they allowed Maliki to his second term, the pres­ence of its leader in the arena may influence the performance of the government and thus will force the prime minister to implement the U.S. withdrawal without delay according to the security agreement signed between the two sides, and that will put the Prime Minister in a very difficult position in the dramatic developments in Lebanon.

[End.]

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The Balkanization of Sudan: The Redrawing of the Middle East and North Africa

January 16, 2011 Comments off

The following commentary is reprinted with permission from Global Research.

The Balkanization of Sudan:  The Redrawing of the Middle East and North Africa
©  Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya
Source:  Global Research
January 16, 2011

Sudan is a diverse nation and a country that represents the plurality of Africa through various tribes, clans, ethnicities, and religious groups. Yet the unity of Sudan is in question, while there is talk of unifying nations and of one day creating a United States of Africa through the African Union.

The limelight is on the January 2011 referendum in South Sudan. The Obama Administration has formally announced that it supports the separation of South Sudan from the rest of Sudan.

The balkanization of Sudan is what is really at stake. For years the leaders and officials of South Sudan have been supported by America and the European Union.

The Politically-Motivated Demonization of Sudan

A major demonization campaign has been underway against Sudan and its government. True, the Sudanese government in Khartoum has had a bad track record in regards to human rights and state corruption, and nothing could justify this.

In regards to Sudan, selective or targeted condemnation has been at work. One should, nonetheless, ask why the Sudanese leadership has been targeted by the U.S. and E.U., while the human rights records of several U.S. sponsored client states including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the U.A.E., and Ethiopia are casually ignored.

Khartoum has been vilified as a autocratic oligarchy guilty of targeted genocide in both Darfour and South Sudan. This deliberate focus on the bloodshed and instability in Darfour and South Sudan is political and motivated by Khartoum’s ties to Chinese oil interests.

Sudan supplies China with a substantial amount of oil. The geo-political rivalry between China and the U.S. for control of African and global energy supplies is the real reason for the chastisement of Sudan and the strong support shown by the U.S., the E.U., and Israeli officials for the seccession of South Sudan.

It is in this context that Chinese interests have been attacked. This includes the October 2006 attack on the Greater Nile Petroleum Company in Defra, Kordofan by the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) militia.

Distorting the Violence in Sudan

While there is a humanitarian crisis in Darfour and a surge in regional nationalism in South Sudan, the underlying causes of the conflict have been manipulated and distorted.

The underlying causes for the humanitarian crisis in Darfour and the regionalism in South Sudan are intimately related to economic and strategic interests. If anything, lawlessness and economic woes are the real issues, which have been fuelled by outside forces.

Either directly or through proxies in Africa, the U.S., the E.U., and Israel are the main architects behind the fighting and instability in both Darfour and South Sudan. These outside powers have assisted in the training, financing, and arming of the militias and forces opposed to the Sudanese government within Sudan. They lay the blame squarely on Khartoum’s shoulders for any violence while they themselves fuel conflict in order to move in and control the energy resources of Sudan. The division of Sudan into several states is part of this objective. Support of the JEM, the South Sudan Liberation Army (SSLA), and other militias opposed to the Sudanese government by the U.S., the E.U., and Israel has been geared towards achieving the objective of dividing Sudan.

It is also no coincidence that for years the U.S., Britain, France, and the entire E.U. under the pretext of humanitarianism have been pushing for the deployment of foreign troops in Sudan. They have actively pushed for the deployment of NATO troops in Sudan under the cover of a U.N. peacekeeping mandate.

This is a re-enactment of the same procedures used by the U.S. and E.U. in other regions where countries have either formally or informally been divided and their economies restructured by foreign-installed proxy governments under the presence of foreign troops. This is what happened in the former Yugoslavia (through the creation of several new republics) and in Anglo-American occupied Iraq (through soft balkanization via a calculated form of federalism aimed at establishing a weak and de-centralized state). Foreign troops and a foreign presence have provided the cloud for state dismantlement and the foreign takeover of state infrastructure, resources, and economies.

The Question of Identity in Sudan

While the Sudanese state has been portrayed as being oppressive towards the people in South Sudan, it should be noted that both the referendum and the power sharing structure of the Sudanese government portray something else. The power sharing agreement in Khartoum between Omar Al-Basher, the president of Sudan, includes the SPLM. The leader of the SPLM, Salva Kiir Mayardit, is the First Vice-President of Sudan and the President of South Sudan.

The issue of ethnicity has also been brought to the forefront of the regional or ethno-regional nationalism that has been cultivated in South Sudan. The cleavage in Sudan between so-called Arab Sudanese and so-called African Sudanese has been presented to the outside world as the major force for the regional nationalism motivating calls for statehood in South Sudan. Over the years this self-differentiation has been diffused and socialized into the collective psyche of the people of South Sudan.

Yet, the difference between so-called Arab Sudanese and so-called African Sudanese are not that great. The Arab identity of so-called Sudanese Arabs is based primarily on their use of the Arabic language. Let us even assume that both Sudanese ethnic identities are totally separate. It is still widely known in Sudan that both groups are very mixed. The other difference between South Sudan and the rest of Sudan is that Islam predominates in the rest of Sudan and not in South Sudan. Both groups are still deeply tied to one another, except for a sense of self-identification, which they are well in their rights to have. Yet, it is these different identities that have been played upon by local leaders and outside powers.

Neglect of the local population of different regions by the elites of Sudan is what the root cause of anxiety or animosity between people in South Sudan and the Khartoum government are really based on and not differences between so-called Arab and so-called African Sudanese.

Regional favouritism has been at work in South Sudan.

The issue is also compounded by social class. The people of South Sudan believe that their economic status and standards of living will improve if they form a new republic. The government in Khartoum and non-Southerner Sudanese have been used as the scapegoats for the economic miseries of the people of South Sudan and their perceptions of relative poverty by the local leadership of South Sudan. In reality, the local officials of South Sudan will not improve the living standards of the people of South Sudan, but maintain a klepocratic status quo. [1]

The Long-Standing Project to Balkanize Sudan and its links to the Arab World

In reality, the balkanization project in Sudan has been going on since the end of British colonial rule in Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. Sudan and Egypt were one country during many different periods. Both Egypt and Sudan were also one country in practice until 1956.

Up until the independence of Sudan, there was a strong movement to keep Egypt and Sudan united as a single Arab state, which was struggling against British interests. London, however, fuelled Sudanese regionalism against Egypt in the same manner that regionalism has been at work in South Sudan against the rest of Sudan. The Egyptian government was depicted in the same way as present-day Khartoum. Egyptians were portrayed as exploiting the Sudanese just as how the non-Southern Sudanese have been portrayed as exploiting the South Sudanese.

After the British invasion of Egypt and Sudan, the British also managed to keep their troops stationed in Sudan. Even while working to divide Sudan from Egypt, the British worked to create internal differentations between South Sudan and the rest of Sudan. This was done through the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium, from 1899 to 1956, which forced Egypt to share Sudan with Britain after the Mahdist Revolts. Eventually the Egyptian government would come to refuse to recognize the Anglo-Egyptian Condominium as legal. Cairo would continously ask the British to end their illegal military occupation of Sudan and to stop preventing the re-integration of Egypt and Sudan, but the British would refuse.

It would be under the presence of British troops that Sudan would declare itself independent. This is what lead to the emergence of Sudan as a separate Arab and African state from Egypt. Thus, the balkanization process started with the division of Sudan from Egypt.

The Yinon Plan at work in Sudan and the Middle East

The balkanization of Sudan is also tied to the Yinon Plan, which is a continuation of British stratagem. The strategic objective of the Yinon Plan is to ensure Israeli superority through the balkanization of the Middle Eastern and Arab states into smaller and weaker states. It is in this context that Israel has been deeply involved in Sudan.

Israeli strategists viewed Iraq as their biggest strategic challenge from an Arab state. This is why Iraq was outlined as the centre piece to the balkanization of the Middle East and the Arab World. The Atlantic in this context published an article in 2008 by Jeffrey Goldberg called “After Iraq: What Will the Middle East Look Like?” [2] In the Goldberg article a map of the Middle East was presented that closely followed the outline of the Yinon Plan and the map of a future Middle East presented by Lieutentant-Colonel (retired) Ralph Peters in the U.S military’s Armed Forces Journal in 2006.

It is also no coincidence that aside from a divided Iraq a divided Sudan was shown on the map. Lebanon, Iran, Turkey, Syria, Egypt, Somalia, Pakistan, and Afghanistan were also presented as divided nations too. Of importance to East Africa in the map, illustrated by Holly Lindem for Goldberg’s article, Eriteria is occupied by Ethiopia, which is a U.S. and Israeli ally, and Somalia is divided into Somaliland, Puntland, and a smaller Somalia.

In Iraq, on the basis of the concepts of the Yinon Plan, Israeli strategists have called for the division of Iraq into a Kurdish state and two Arab states, one for Shiite Muslims and the other for Sunni Muslims. This has been achieved through the soft balkanization of federalism in Iraq, which has allowed the Kurdistan Regional Government to negotiate with foreign oil corporations on its own. The first step towards establishing this was a war between Iraq and Iran, which is discussed in the Yinon Plan.

In Lebanon, Israel has been working to exasparate sectarian tensions between the various Christian and Muslim factions as well as the Druze. The division of Lebanon into several states is also seen as a means of balkanizing Syria into several smaller sectarian Arab states. The objectives of the Yinon Plan is to divide Lebanon and Syria into several states on the basis of religious and sectarian identities for Sunni Muslims, Shiite Muslims, Christians, and the Druze.

In this regard, the Hariri Assasination and the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) have been playing out to the favour of Israel in creating internal divisions within Lebanon and fuelling politically-motivated sectarianism. This is why Tel Aviv has been very vocal about the STL and very supportive of it. In a clear sign of the politized nature of the STL and its ties to geo-politics, the U.S. and Britain have also given the STL millions of dollars.

The Links between the Attacks on the Egyptian Copts and the South Sudan Referendum

From Iraq to Egypt, Christians in the Middle East have been under attack, while tensions between Shiite Muslims and Sunni Muslims are being fuelled. The attack on a Coptic Church in Alexandria on January 1, 2011 or the subsequent Coptic protests and riots should not be looked at in isolation. [3] Nor should the subsequent fury of Coptic Christians expressed towards Muslims and the Egyptian government. These attacks on Christians are tied to the broader geo-political goals of the U.S., Britain, Israel, and NATO in the Middle East and Arab World.

The Yinon Plan stipulates that if Egypt were divided that Sudan and Libya would also be balkanized and weakened. In this context, there is a link between Sudan and Egypt. According to the Yinon Plan, the Copts or Christians of Egypt, which are a large minority in Egypt, are the key to the balkanization of the Arab states in North Africa. Thus, the Yinon Plan states that the creation of a Coptic state in Upper Egypt (South Egypt) and Christian-Muslim tensions within Egyptian are vital steps to balkanizing Sudan and North Africa.

The attacks on Christians in the Middle East are part of intelligence operations intended to divide the Middle East and North Africa. The timing of the mounting attacks on Coptic Christians in Egypt and the build-up to the referendum in South Sudan are no coincidence. The events in Sudan and Egypt are linked to one another and are part of the project to balkanize the Arab World and the Middle East. They must also be studied in conjunction with the Yinon Plan and with the events in Lebanon and Iraq, as well as in relation to the efforts to create a Shiite-Sunni divide.

The Outside Connections of the SPLM, SSLA, and Militias in Darfour

As in the case of Sudan, outside interference or intervention has been used to justify the oppression of domestic opposition. Despite its corruption, Khartoum has been under siege for refusing to merely be a proxy.

Sudan is justified in suspecting foreign troops and accusing the U.S., Britain, and Israel of eroding the national solidarity of Sudan. For example, Israel has sent arms to the opposition groups and separatist movements in Sudan. This was done through Ethiopia for years until Eritrea became independent from Ethiopia, which made Ethiopia lose its Red Sea coast, and bad relations developed between the Ethiopians and Eritreans. Afterwards Israeli weapons entered South Sudan from Kenya. From South Sudan, the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), which is the political arm of the SSLA, would transfer weapons to the militias in Darfur. The governments of Ethiopia and Kenya, as well as the the Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF), have also been working closely with the U.S., Britain, and Israel in East Africa.

The extent of Israeli influence with Sudanese opposition and separatist groups is significant. The SPLM has strong ties with Israel and its members and supporters regularly visit Israel. It is due to this that Khartoum capitulated and removed the Sudanese passport restriction on visiting Israel in late-2009 to satisfy the SPLM. [4] Salva Kiir Mayardit has also said that South Sudan will recognize Israel when it separates from Sudan.

The Sudan Tribune reported on March 5, 2008 that separatist groups in Darfur and Southern Sudan had offices in Israel:

[Sudan People’s Liberation Movement] supporters in Israel announced establishment of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement office in Israel, a press release said today.

“After consultation with the leadership of SPLM in Juba, the supporters of SPLM in Israel have decided to establish the office of SPLM in Israel.” Said [sic.] a statement received by email from Tel Aviv signed by the SLMP secretariat in Israel.

The statement said that SPLM office would promote the policies and the vision of the SPLM in the region. It further added that in accordance with the Comprehensive Peace Agreement the SPLM has the right to open in any country including Israel. It also indicated that there are around 400 SPLM supporters in Israel. Darfur rebel leader Abdel Wahid al-Nur said last week he opened an office in Tel Aviv. [5]

The Hijacking of the 2011 Referendum in South Sudan

What happened to the dreams of a united Africa or a united Arab World? Pan-Arabism, a movement to unit all Arabic-speaking peoples, has taken heavy losses as has African unity. The Arab World and Africa have consistenly been balkanized.

Secession and balkanization in East Africa and the Arab World are on the U.S., Israeli, and NATO drawing board.

The SSLA insurgency has been covertly supported by the U.S., Britain, and Israel since the 1980s. The formation of a new state in the Sudan is not intended to serve the interests of the people of South Sudan. It has been part of a broader geo-strategic agenda aimed at controlling North Africa and the Middle East.

The resulting process of “democratization” leading up to the January 2011 referendum serves the interests of the Anglo-American oil companies and the rivalry against China. This comes at the cost of the detriment of true national sovereignty in South Sudan.

NOTES

[1]  A kleptocracy is a government or/and state that works to protect, extend, deepen, continue, and entrench the wealth of the ruling class.
[2]  Jeffrey Goldberg, “After Iraq: What Will The Middle East Look Like?” The Atlantic, January/February 2008.
[3]  William Maclean, “Copts on global Christmas alert after Egypt bombing”, Reuters, January 5, 2011.
[4]  “Sudan removes Israel travel ban from new passport”, Sudan Tribune, October 3, 2009:
.
[5]  “Sudan’s SPLM reportedly opens an office in Israel – statement”, Sudan Tribune, March 5, 2008:

[End.]
__________

Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG).

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