Saturday, April 22, 2017

Saudi regime media are really excited about Trump

It says on the wheel: ("The Nuclear Agreement with Iran").

The fragility of American democracy

This recent US election has exposed more than ever the fragility of American democracy.  This is a good thing but I doubt it will diminish the political self-righteousness of US foreign policy.

Trump Doctrine Crystallizes

My weekly article in Al-Akhbar: "Trump Doctrine Crystallizes: Bombs and Missiles First"

There is a civil war in Saudi media

There is a half-declared civil war in Saudi regime media: on the one side are those who are (falsely) called "liberal", and they are mostly right-wing Lebanese and some Saudis who wish to decrease the role of Islam in politics in favor of tighter rule by Saudi royals and who favor a close US-Saudi alliance, and on the other side are the more powerful (and popular) Islamist pro-Turkey (and pro-Ikhwan) camp which voices strong criticisms of Saudi regime media in London.  Look at this hashtag campaign by Islamist Saudis against Al-Hayat (mouthpiece of Prince Khalid bin Sultan) due to criticisms against Erdogan in the paper.   The campaign is titled "Al-Hayat Launches a crusading campaign against Turkey".  This is not a subtle reference to Christians who work in regime paper (I notice that Gulf regime media have added "Christians" as of late to its list of hated groups, which focuses most on Shi`ites and Alawites.
https://twitter.com/hashtag/الحياة_تشن_حملة_صليبية_على_تركيا?src=hash

Friday, April 21, 2017

Mélenchon

I can never expect to see a US presidential candidate (on the left, center or right) making "reflect" or "think" as a campaign slogan. It would never fly in this country.  

Who is more qualified to praise Trump's militarism and aggression than an Obama official?

"“That missile strike certainly had to get Putin’s attention, and it did show we were determined to enforce international norms on chemical weapons,” said Antony J. Blinken, who was deputy secretary of state and deputy national security adviser in the Obama administration. “Equally important was the effort to tie Russia to the use of chemical weapons.”"

2 out of 6 winners of the Man Booker International Prize are Israelis

You honestly believe that of all the world literature, two out of six winners are Israelis based on merit and talent alone? You believe that? Of course, you can factor in the fact that Israeli "literature" (and even gasps and yawns) is instantly translated into English (far more than literature from Latin America and Africa and Asia) but this love and bias for Israel is way out of whack.  You are telling me that 2 out of 6 deserve to be Israelis?

lack of preparedness on foreign policy for US presidents

"The only modern president who rivaled Donald Trump in his lack of preparation for global leadership was Harry Truman. "  You mean not counting Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush, Lyndon Johnson, and Gerald Ford?

Why I read the New York Times

People ask me why I read the New York Times religiously.  I say: for the same reasons that people in Saudi Arabia read Ash-Sharq Al-Awsat or people in Syria read Tishrin. You need to know what the regime is plotting against you.

Their culture versus "our culture": Economist magazine

"But he is by nature a bully in a culture that admires displays of strength." As opposed to the West, where there is no admiration for displays of strength? In the week when Trump witnessed his popularity rise purely for bombing other countries?

Silly attack on communism in the New Yorker

"he found peasant women sitting there, with “bundles and baskets and big handkerchiefs around their heads,” seated on “benches rubbed dull with waiting.” Long after the Revolution and all its world-changing promises had settled into a grim stasis, waiting was still a Russian specialty." I don't get it. So people don't wait in capitalistic countries?

Is this article by David Ignatius a paid Saudi advertisement?

"But the larger goal, he said, is “spreading happiness” in what has sometimes been a somber country." Or this: "Unlike so many Saudi princes, he wasn’t educated in the West, which may have preserved the raw combative energy that is part of his appeal for young Saudis.".   If someone were to write such propaganda about North Korea, he would have been accused of treason.

David Ignatius is such a propagandist for Arab royals that he cites unpublished Arab regime polls

"Change seems increasingly desired in this young, restless country. A recent Saudi poll found that 85 percent of the public, if forced to choose, would support the government rather than religious authorities on policy matters, said Abdullah al-Hokail, the head of the government’s public opinion center." Are you sure, David, it is not 99%?

AJ + and sexual harassment

I see that AJ + released a short video about Bill O'Reilly and Fox News. It would be nice if AJ + (which has deteriorated over time and has become a crude propaganda tool of the Qatari regime) would release a report about sexual harassment and discrimination in Aljazeera offices.  

North versus South Korea

The military budget of South Korea is four times the size of the military budget of North Korea--not to count US troops in South Korea.

South Korean propaganda apparatus

There is no apparatus which is more responsible for the manufacturing of lies and rumors than the South Korean intelligence apparatus.

Someone should run a regression on this: Virtual media and protests in Arab cities

I think a reverse correlation can be established: if you chart the rise of the social media and the occurrences of demonstrations in Arab cities in the last decade you will find a reverse correlation.  

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Mélenchon: what Bernie Sanders is...not


When Israeli intelligence propaganda becomes a trusted objective source on Syrian and Iranian matters

Replying to 
"Israeli military intelligence estimates that Assad has 'between one and three tons' of chemical weapons."

New Yorker on Dubai

Of course, the article is shallow and impressionable and silly. What you expect in Western media about the Arab world.  But Sultan Qassimi protested that the article did not talk about museums in Dubai. You can have Vegas with museums though.  In fact, Vegas has many museums: don't forget the Wayne Newton Museum.  But you can't deny the deep impact that Vegas left on the minds of oil sheikhs--aesthetically speaking.  

The prime minister of Lebanon yesterday got rid of the two extra training wheels. The country could not be prouder


Syrian rebels are always victims--even when they bomb and kill

Western and Arab (gulf and oil) propaganda have managed to always make Syrian rebels as victims and to conflate them with Syrian civilians. So the rebels are victims even when rebels car bombed civilians in buses in Rashidin, Western media and Arab gas and oil media managed to make the rebels as victims by promoting crazy scenarios of the bombing and by peddling one picture of a Syrian "activist-journalist"--whatever that means in journalism schools--crying as to show the rebels and supporters as victims even when they (the rebels) are the perpetrators of bombing. So they can't lose sympathetic media coverage no matter what they do or bomb.

Ken Roth at Human Rights Watch: preparing for a successor

I am told that while Ken Roth has been at the helm of Human Rights Watch since 1993, securing what he calls "pro-Israel" funding, he realized that he can't mock rulers who don't allow for succession to their rule while he remains in control of an ostensible human rights organization.  I have it on good authority that he has prepared his son, Muhammad bin Ken, to take over the organization after him.  Long live peaceful transition to new blood.  

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

"Funny: Western media thinks The National is no longer state-owned"

From Basim: "International Media Investments, owned by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan of Manchester City, bought The National in November from state-owned Abu Dhabi Media."

Kim in Tyre

In the Tyre area of Lebanon, someone posted this poster of Kim. The title says: "Vanquisher of the Enemies: Abu `Ali Kim".

Of all the human rights problems out there, Kenneth Roth is campaigning for the right-wing candidate in the French election

He has not been bothered by the various support for Israel and Saudi Arabia by French presidents but is bothered by the one socialist candidate who has not even reached power?

Do you know that Kenneth Roth has been leading HRW since 1993? He has ruled longer than Putin and Erdogan

What kind of credibility does Human Rights Watch have when it has been ruled since 1993 iron-fistedly by one man, and one man alone.  All other Western human rights organizations allow for transfer of power in the leadership and the infusion of female leadership except this organization: what kind of message does this send when one man has ruled that organizations for several decades now?

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

And US propagandists like you are busy promoting Macron

Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth)
Russia's propagandists are busy promoting Marine Le Pen and Francois Fillon--anyone but Emmanuel Macron. bit.ly/2pLfaKY pic.twitter.com/gN6tgvkuN9

Buffonish King of Jordan posts (on his official site) his training for the liberation of Palestine


Human Rights Watch (the propaganda arm of the US-Israeli wars) does not label US war crimes as war crimes

Here is how Human Rights Watch operates: when it comes to foes of the US (like Russia or Syrian regime), they categorize their actions as war crimes based on youtube and tweets of Syrian rebels.  But when it comes to war crimes by US or Israel, they urge caution and then they say that an investigation is needed.  After they conduct their own investigation, they rule thus: the US (or Saudi regime or Israel), MAY HAVE committed war crimes.  Look at this lousy language of a US war crime: "Serious violations of the laws of war can amount to war crimes. These include deliberately targeting civilians or civilian objects (including mosques), knowingly launching indiscriminate or disproportionate attacks resulting in death or injury to civilians, or being criminally reckless in so doing. The US authorities’ failure to understand the most fundamental aspects of the target and pattern of life around the target raises the question whether officers were criminally reckless in authorizing the attack."

Monday, April 17, 2017

National Defense College in the UAE: Sheikh Mo as a strategic visionary

"NON-TRADITIONAL STRATEGISTS (NDC 4008), 2 CREDITS
The purpose of this course is to introduce participants to past and present non-traditional strategic leaders, largely from the Islamic world and Asia, to understand how these leaders applied or misapplied the elements of strategy to achieve their objectives. We look at range of leaders, starting with possibly the most famous strategist in the business world, and of Arab decent, Apple Inc co-founder Steve Jobs. We also look at the strategic approaches of H.H. Vice-President Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid al-Maktoum, Saladin, Khalid Ibn Waleed, Saddam Hussein, Ayatollah Khomeini, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, Gamal Abdel Nasser, Gandhi, Mao and South Korean leader Lee Kuan Yew. This elective course gives the participants an opportunity to apply models of strategy used throughout the academic year to non-traditional strategists in areas of military, economic and political aims. It also provides participants an opportunity to compare and contrast the strategic approaches of different leaders."  Notice that Lee Kuan Yew, the former Primer minister of Singapore became South Korean.  (thanks Noureddine)

Sunday, April 16, 2017

I don't like Erdogan one bit but...

I remember that when Turkey was under the rule of Military generals and its alliance with Israel was closer, I never heard any complaints from Western governments and media about lack of democracy in Turkey.  

When Hamid Karzai calls you a traitor, what do you do?

I like how in US media they refer protests against US killing of Afghan civilians as troublemaking and corruption.

To Western correspondents in Beirut

Please spare us your fake sentimentalism and emotionalism.  I didn't like your callous attitude toward Palestinian suffering over the decades but I like your fake tears over Syrian suffering even less.  

Ben Hubbard had no clue who killed the civilians in the buses yesterday

"Dozens of people were killed in the Syrian city of Aleppo on Saturday when a car bomb struck a group of buses carrying residents and fighters who had been evacuated from two besieged towns the day before."  How were they killed? And who killed them? A hurricane?  He then seems to provide justification for the siege and murder of the civilians of the two villages: "two Shiite villages in Idlib Province that are loyal to President Bashar al-Assad".  Imagine if he were to refer to residents in Rif Idlib as "an area loyal to Al-Qa`idah".  

The bombing of the two buses yesterday

Notice that Western media talk about it as if it was some natural disaster where culprits are mysterious.

This is how the human rights poseur commented on the Syrian rebel bombing of busses of refugees

Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth)
Even before bombing, evacuation from four Syrian towns was bittersweet. Lifting the sieges would've been better. bit.ly/2oC0jof

Centcome means business

"“We mean business,” the CENTCOM spokesman said. “President Trump said prior that once he gets in he’s going to kick the S-H-I-T out of the enemy. That was his promise and that’s exactly what we’re doing.”"

The bombing yesterday in Syria

Western supporters of Syrian rebels claim that they can't condemn bombing by rebels because there aren't claims of responsibility for their bombings.  But the lack of claim of responsibility does not stop them from condemning bombing by the other side.  Find another excuse, please.

John McCain and Muslims

It is really established: John McCain hates all Muslims in the world except: 1) Muslim terrorists and 2) Gulf royals.  

Charles Murray's "provocative" talk

This is the case in the mainstream media: they refer to racism and sexism which they approve of as "controversial "or "provocative".  Look at this unscientific survey: they don't even tell us how many women and minorities were included in the survey.  And why would the surveyed professors be a barometer of sensitivity

Another "curveball"?

I have one question: why didn't he speak earlier?  "Bashar al-Assad still has 'hundreds of tons' of chemicals stockpiled, former Syrian weapons research chief claims".

Western journalists and correspondents won't be tweeting tears on this: 1 million Palestinians detained by Israel since 1948

"Israeli authorities have detained approximately one million Palestinians since the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948 and the subsequent occupation of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip in 1967, according to a joint statement released Saturday by the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS), and the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS). “The question of Palestinian prisoners is central for the Palestinian cause,” the statement affirmed, two days before Palestinians mark Palestinian Prisoners’ Day on April 17. The groups said that Israeli forces detained hundreds of thousands of Palestinians during the first and second intifadas, which they referred to as one of the “most difficult historical stages” of Palestine. During the First Intifada, which lasted from Dec. 1987 until the Madrid Conference in 1991 aimed at reviving the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, scores of Palestinians were detained by Israeli forces as a result of the largely nonviolent uprising which relied on various campaigns of civil disobedience. In 2000, the Second Intifada broke out — known as the Al-Aqsa Intifada — after then Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon entered the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in an act of provocation, causing heavy clashes to break out between Palestinians and Israeli forces, which developed into a full-scale uprising. According to the joint statement, by the time the uprising ended in 2005, Israeli authorities detained some 100,000 Palestinians, including 15,000 minors and 1,500 women, and 70 Palestinian lawmakers and former ministers."

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Passion play in Lebanon:

Western reporters won't cover with revulsion the way they cover `Ashura'.

It does not make a different who is president in the US--at least when it comes to war and conquest

"All U.S. presidents assume the right to bomb, attack, invade and interfere everywhere, including places like the South China Sea. Obama called it “projecting U.S. power.” Hillary would’ve bombed Syria long before Trump did." (thanks Amir)