Tuesday, January 13, 2009

IRAN: Moderates VS. Extremists/fundamentalists....it failed miserably.

Gaza: A pawn in the old 'great game'...., it was played to the hilt by Reagan in the 80s with IRAN: Moderates VS. Extremists/fundamentalists....it failed miserably then....Why would it be any different now? The UKUSA alliance of evils has run out of options, pure and simple. No lies will work no more....

Take the example of Lebanon in the 70s:

While the extremely high percentage of Lebanese who have negative views of Jews (who are often conflated with Israelis) is unsurprising, given repeated invasions and occupations, it is tragic in that Lebanon is the only Arab country in which Jews are a recognized and founding group of the nation-state. Indeed, Lebanon was the only country that experienced an increase in its Jewish population after the creation of Israel as it was rightly viewed as a country of religious and ethnic diversity and tolerance....

How and when, if ever, negative attitudes toward Jews - as distinguished from Israelis - as well as fear of religious groups other than one's own can ever be lessened is yet another challenge facing a fragile, yet still democratic and diverse Lebanon. And yet, the US nexus of evils, CIA2/MOSSAD destroyed Lebanon through and through with their blind cold war rhetorics for decades....

How to trust any policies after today is beyond reach...whether EU, USA or UN, confidence and trust have evaporated for good...?

A s Europeans watch the humanitarian disaster in Gaza unfold on nightly news bulletins, many may wonder why this crisis seems to have left their governments groping in such apparent fumbling disarray. The answer is that it is the result of policies pulling in opposite directions - of an acute irreconcilability at the heart of their policy-making.

What has happened in Gaza was all too foreseeable. A few Israelis forewarned about this coming crisis, but the appeal of the "grand narrative" - of a global struggle between "moderates" and "extremists" - overrode their warnings to the Israeli electorate.

The thesis that literally "everything" must be done either to lever "moderates" into power, or prevent them from losing power - euphemistically called "supporting moderation" - lies at the heart of the Gaza crisis.

It is a narrative that has served Israel's wider interests in garnering legitimacy for the Israeli campaign against Iran, and in dichotomizing the region into Westernized "moderates" and Islamist "extremists".

Former British prime minister, and current Middle East envoy for the Quartet group of the United Nations, Tony Blair's proselytizing around the world on this theme has been a huge asset for an Israel which aspires to become the leading member of a "moderate" bloc, rather than an isolated island in an increasingly Islamist Middle East. Yet Blair's and other Quartet members' attempts to fit this simplistic mechanical template over a complex Middle East, facing multiple struggles, has reduced the Palestinian crisis to being no more than a pawn in a bigger "game" of the existential global struggle against "extremism".

But such models, once generally accepted, force a deterministic interpretation that can blind its advocates to the real results of such narrow and rigid conceptualizing: a humbled Hamas was seen to be a blow to Hezbollah, which in turn represented a blow to Syria, which weakened Iran - all of which strengthens the "moderates" and makes Israel safer.

Whether this thinking will achieve anything approaching this result remains highly improbable; but its price - Hamas clearly branded and now attacked as a part of these global forces of "extremism" - has been the foreclosure on the possibility of any solution to the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.

European acquiescence to this Blairite vision of squeezing and humbling Hamas has directly contributed to the bloodshed seen in the streets of Gaza today. European leaders are complicit in creating the circumstances that led to today's disaster.

At one level, Europeans may say they have been working diligently to pursue an Israeli-Palestinian solution, but their actions suggest the opposite - that they have been more concerned to deliver a knock-out blow to the camp of global "extremism". Pursuing such irreconcilable ends has only succeeded both in stripping their protégé Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas of any popular legitimacy and in closing the path of political participation to Hamas.

They have destroyed any hope to achieve a truly national Palestinian mandate for any political solution for the foreseeable future. European "social engineering" in Gaza has created only deep division among Palestinians, and possibly pushed a Palestinian state beyond reach.

European leaders bought into this strategy, hoping to pull-off a quickie under-the-table "peace" deal with Abbas that could then be "enforced" on the Palestinians through a multi-national "peacekeeping" force.

This was to be achieved with the collaboration of Egypt and Saudi Arabia who were becoming increasingly fearful of the challenge from within their own domestic electorate and who were not adverse to seeing Hamas cornered in Gaza and "punished" by the Israelis. Stage one was to weaken Hamas; stage two to insert an armed international force into Gaza; and stage three was for Abbas' British and United States-trained special forces to return to Gaza and resume control of the Gaza Strip. It is standard colonial technique.

Any psychologist, however, might have advised the European and US policymakers that putting one-and-a-half million Palestinians "on a diet", as an earlier Israeli chief-of-staff to the Israeli prime minister described it, and shredding any plans or hopes that they may have had for their futures, does not make humans more docile or more moderate. After a while in the Gaza pressure-cooker, anger and despair boil up: Gaza ultimately was set to explode - one way or another.

As Gaza was squeezed to the point of desperation in the hope that its inhabitants would turn on Hamas, Britain and the US busied themselves in training a Palestinian "special forces" militia around Abbas. The force was used to suppress political activity by Hamas in the West Bank and to close down welfare and social organizations that are not aligned directly with Abbas. A policy of political "cleansing" of the West Bank, cloaked under the rhetoric of "building security institutions", predictably has been met with an equivalent counter-reaction by Hamas in Gaza - exacerbating Palestinian divisions.

This, then, is the backdrop against which Hamas elected to decline a renewed ceasefire. To stand passive and cornered while Palestinians in Gaza were made destitute and hopeless in an extended ceasefire, and to watch as the Anglo-American political cleansing in the West Bank proceeded, simply was not feasible. European policy was not leading to a political solution, it was set on a course of self-destruction in Gaza and West Bank.

Even in the wake of this humanitarian disaster, European mediators seem more concerned to fight the global war of "moderates" versus "extremists" than to achieve a solution. Blair on Israeli television argued that the priority must be to ensure that weapons cannot continue to reach Hamas via the smuggling tunnels - or else the killing continues.

This is being said, however, at exactly the same time that Israeli officials were briefing journalists that the army began planning, training and acquiring the new weapons from the US for this assault - even as the terms of the past ceasefire were still to be agreed with Hamas.

The hold of this moderate/extremist mindset over Europeans and Americans suggests that Europeans again will acquiesce to ceasefire aims intended to hollow out any political future for Hamas. The conflict seems set to continue, but the outlines of a new ceasefire are available today if anyone chooses to pursue them.

The border crossings must be fully opened and life for Gazans must be returned to normality. On this basis, a stable ceasefire could be agreed on. Palestinian unity will be achieved only by opening Palestinian leadership institutions, including the Palestinian Liberation Organization, to radical reforms that will make them genuinely representative of the Palestinian people - and not through the political cleansing of Hamas from the political arena.

Repeated Western attempts to lay a template that has persistently misconceived where the real risk of extremism lies in Islamism, and miscast immoderates as the moderates, has so far only served to light the fires of extremism, rather than extinguish them....

The price of Honesty in the West....of today:

--Jewish editor sacked for publishing article

This article was sent to Debbie Ducro, an American-Jewish journalist with the Kansas City Jewish Chronicle. She published it, and was fired the next day....

Quest for justice

By Judith Stone

I am a Jew. I was a participant in the Rally for the Right of Return to Palestine. It was the right thing to do.

I've heard about the European holocaust against the Jews since I was a small child. I've visited the memorials in Washington, DC and Jerusalem dedicated to Jewish lives lost and I've cried at the recognition to what level of atrocity mankind is capable of sinking.

Where are the Jews of conscience? No righteous malice can be held against the survivors of Hitler's holocaust. These fragments of humanity were in no position to make choices beyond that of personal survival. We must not forget that being a survivor or a co-religionist of the victims of the European Holocaust does not grant dispensation from abiding by the rules of humanity.

"Never again" as a motto, rings hollow when it means "never again to us alone." My generation was raised being led to believe that the biblical land was a vast desert inhabited by a handful of impoverished Palestinians living with their camels and eking out a living in the sand. The arrival of the Jews was touted as a tremendous benefit to these desert dwellers. Golda Meir even assured us that there "is no Palestinian problem".

We know now this picture wasn't as it was painted. Palestine was a land filled with people who called it home. There were thriving towns and villages, schools and hospitals. There were Jews, Christians and Muslims.

In fact, prior to the occupation, Jews represented a mere seven per cent of the population and owned three per cent of the land.

Taking the blinders off for a moment, I see a second atrocity perpetuated by the very people who should be exquisitely sensitive to the suffering of others. These people knew what it felt like to be ordered out of your home at gun point and forced to march into the night to unknown destinations or face execution on the spot. The people who displaced the Palestinians knew first hand what it means to watch your home in flames, to surrender everything dear to your heart at a moment's notice. Bulldozers leveled hundreds of villages, along with the remains of the village inhabitants, the old and the young. This was nothing new to the world.

Poland is a vast graveyard of the Jews of Europe. Israel is the final resting place of the massacred Palestinian people. A short distance from the memorial to the Jewish children lost to the holocaust in Europe there is a levelled parking lot. Under this parking lot is what's left of a once flourishing village and the bodies of men, women and children whose only crime was taking up needed space and not leaving graciously. This particular burial marker reads: "Public Parking".

I've talked with Palestinians. I have yet to meet a Palestinian who hasn't lost a member of their family to the Israeli Shoah, nor a Palestinian who cannot name a relative or friend languishing under inhumane conditions in an Israeli prison. Time and time again, Israel is cited for human rights violations to no avail. On a recent trip to Israel, I visited the refugee camps inhabited by a people who have waited 52 years in these 'temporary' camps to go home. Every Palestinian grandparent can tell you the name of their village, their street, and where the olive trees were planted. Their grandchildren may never have been home, but they can tell you where their great-grandfather lies buried and where the village well stood. The press has fostered the portrait of the Palestinian terrorist. But the victims who rose up against human indignity in the Warsaw Ghetto are called heroes. Those who lost their lives are called martyrs. The Palestinian who tosses a rock in desperation is a terrorist.

Two years ago I drove through Palestine and watched intricate sprinkler systems watering lush green lawns of Zionist settlers in their new condominium complexes, surrounded by armed guards and barbed wire in the midst of a Palestinian community where there was not adequate water to drink and the surrounding fields were sandy and dry. University professor Moshe Zimmerman reported in the Jerusalem Post (30 April, 1995), "The [Jewish] children of Hebron are just like Hitler's youth."

We Jews are suing for restitution, lost wages, compensation for homes, land, slave labour and back wages in Europe. Am I a traitor of a Jew for supporting the right of return of the Palestinian refugees to their birthplace and compensation for what was taken that cannot be returned?

The Jewish dead cannot be brought back to life and neither can the Palestinian massacred be resurrected. David Ben Gurion said, "Let us not ignore the truth among ourselves...politically, we are the aggressors and they defend themselves...The country is theirs, because they inhabit it, whereas we want to come here and settle down, and in their view we want to take away from them their country...".

Palestine is a land that has been occupied and emptied of its people. Its cultural and physical landmarks have been obliterated and replaced by tidy Hebrew signs. The history of a people was the first thing eradicated by the occupiers. The history of the indigenous people has been all but eradicated as though they never existed. And all this has been hailed by the world as a miraculous act of God. We must recognise that Israel’s existence is not even a question of legality so much as it is an illegal fait accompli realized through the use of force while supported by the Western powers. The UN missions directed at Israel in attempting to correct its violations of have thus far been futile.

In Hertzl's 'The Jewish State' the father of Zionism said: "We must investigate and take possession of the new Jewish country by means of every modern expedient." I guess I agree with Ehud Barak (3 June 1998) when he said, "If I were a Palestinian, I'd also join a terror group." I'd go a step further perhaps. Rather than throwing little stones in desperation, I'd hurtle a boulder.

Hopefully, somewhere deep inside, every Jew of conscience knows that this was no war; that this was not G-d's restitution of the holy land to it's rightful owners. We know that a human atrocity was and continues to be perpetuated against an innocent people who couldn't come up with the arms and money to defend themselves against the western powers bent upon their demise as a people.

We cannot continue to say, "But what were we to do?" Zionism is not synonymous with Judaism. I wholly support the rally of the right of return of the Palestinian people. here.