West Asia News and Discussions

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Pranav
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Pranav » 29 Aug 2012 08:06

Philip wrote:More details about the Arafat investigation.

France opens murder inquiry into Arafat's death


Why do the Palestinians think France is an unbiased party, given its behavior in the Syrian context.

France Urges Creation of Interim Syrian Government, Pledging Recognition - http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/28/world ... wanted=all

Theo_Fidel

Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Theo_Fidel » 29 Aug 2012 09:16

BTW India does not grant citizenship by birth either, and for a long time as well.
USA and few European countries are exceptions in this regard. Due to relentless attack by obscurantists it is doubtful if this will last much longer.
------------------------------------

Shyamd,

I does appear you were right and too many fell for Iranian propaganda. People believe what they want to believe, truth has no utility for them.

Does that d stand for 'deep throat'..... 8)

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby RamaY » 29 Aug 2012 17:05

The key is to not fall for propaganda be it Iranian or GCC or Christian or Islamic etc., and to be Bharatiya and strive for Bharatiya interests.

It applies to all levels of individual consciousness.

hnair
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby hnair » 29 Aug 2012 17:36

:rotfl: "deep throat"? A Linda Lovelace reference in a geopolitical thread.... edgy humor

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby pentaiah » 29 Aug 2012 18:49

hnair wrote::rotfl: "deep throat"? A Linda Lovelace reference in a geopolitical thread.... edgy humor

I thought of it and my humor didn't tickle the all knowing :mrgreen:

So kept to myself and swallowed it

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Kati » 29 Aug 2012 21:11

If the Alawaites cn get hold of their "homeland" which will be essentially the entire
coastline of Syria from Lebanon to Turkey, then pretty much the sunnis will be
boxed in between Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq, Jordan and SA. Alawaites still can get
supplies from Iran, and Iran can still tweak the Sunni Syria through Iraq.......It will
still not be the end of Shia crescent. Unstable ME will be more of a headache for
the west. What do the BRF-gurus say?

eklavya
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby eklavya » 29 Aug 2012 21:26

The Syrian regime is not losing the civil war: Iran and Russia are powerful backers, the opposition too has unpalatable qualities, western backing for the opposition is at best half-hearted, GCC 'powers' are a poo joke (Bahraini Shia opposition was put down by Pakistani troops).

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Surya » 30 Aug 2012 06:10

Shyamd,

I does appear you were right and too many fell for Iranian propaganda. People believe what they want to believe, truth has no utility for them


awww - we do not believe chaiwallahs, darjis and other assorted chamchas

simble = if we see the bandar in public - we will be believe it - till then its speculative

after all if an explosion occurred in ISI HQ and we did not shuja paja whoever is the ISI chief for weeks - one would wonder

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby pentaiah » 30 Aug 2012 07:53

http://blog.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2012/08/18/duck_duck_wolf

IRAN
What Is Israel Trying to Do?

Duck, duck ... wolf
Posted By Blake Hounshell Saturday, August 18, 2012 - 9:32 AM Share
One thing that's been bugging me about the endless Washington parlor game "Will Israel attack Iran?" -- it's not a simple, binary question. It's actually a somewhat complicated series of interlocking questions, the answers to which will send us to different branches of Bibi Netanyahu's decision tree.

Yes, Israel might attack Iran. And yes, Israel keeps threatening to attack Iran in order to (a) tighten the sanctions regime by indicating to wayward countries in Europe and Asia that the alternative is worse; (b) frighten Iran into agreeing to meet the West's demands; (c) leverage President Obama's debilitating fear of being painted as anti-Israel to extract various promises from Washington; (d) prepare the world and the Israeli public for the possibility of a strike against Iran's nuclear program; and (e) keep the focus on the Iranian threat, not the settlements or the stalled "peace process" with the Palestinians.

All of these things can be and are true at the same time. Israel may not ever attack (though increasing numbers of people believe Bibi is not bluffing this time around), but there are items on its wishlist that could make the possibility even more remote than it is today.

The one being talked about now is a strong public commitment from Obama to take out Iran's nuclear program (of this variety) in exchange for Israel agreeing not to take matters into its own hands. Israel's former military intel chief, Amos Yadlin, floats a variation on this idea in today's Washington Post:

The U.S. president should visit Israel and tell its leadership — and, more important, its people — that preventing a nuclear Iran is a U.S. interest, and if we have to resort to military action, we will. This message, delivered by the president of the United States to the Israeli Knesset, would be far more effective than U.S. officials’ attempts to convey the same sentiment behind closed doors.

Former Obama advisor Dennis Ross makes a similar case in Friday's New York Times, though he takes the possibility that diplomacy might work a little more seriously than does Yadlin.

In any case, the point is this: Israel might strike Iran, eventually. But in the meantime, there are other goals at work in this very public drumbeat of warnings. And both of these things can be true at the same time.

***********

Milk Milk hay hay while the sunshines

Philip
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Philip » 30 Aug 2012 11:53

The cries of "wolf!" have been made so mant times with regard to attacking Iran,thta there has been huge time given to the Iranians to secrete their key N-enrichment facilities and other bomb-making eqpt.,spreading them at various heavily defended sites in the country if they so desired.This is why many western analysts say that Iran's nuclear ambitions cannot be stopped,only delayed.It is most unfortunate that the major N-powers have not worked together to create N-free zones which they could've established especially where nations have signed the NPT.Israel too with its suspected arsenal of at least 500+ warheads,is the glowing elephant in the dark room which no one wants to talk about! Ideally,it is for the Sunni and Shia leadership,Saudis and Iranians to sit at the table and defuse the situ and their hegemonistic ambitions in the Arab/Muslim world. They are at odds practically everywhere in the region and are covertly and overtly funding and supporting rival states and armed opposition entities.Allowing so-called "Christian" states to get into the act only complicates the task of finding a solution.At the core though is still the unfinished business of finding an Israeli-Palestinian peace settlement,as this report about Arafat's "murder" indicates.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world ... 92842.html

Was Yasser Arafat murdered?
Israel says no, but most Palestinians disagree – and now France is investigating. Donald Macintyre reports on a 'myth' that won't die

Barber Mohammed Hamad was in no doubt about the reasons for Yasser Arafat's death just under eight years ago. As he trimmed a customer's hair in his shop in the Amari refugee camp yesterday, he welcomed the news that French prosecutors have opened a murder investigation. And he insisted that "99.9 per cent of people" in the city where the previous Palestinian President was confined in his sandbagged headquarters for the final two years of his life "believe Abu Ammar" – he uses Arafat's nom de guerre – "was murdered, poisoned".

While strongly suspecting that the actual deed was perpetrated by a Palestinian with regular access to Arafat, Mr Hamad, 44, was equally certain that Israel and its then Prime Minister Ariel Sharon were behind it. "Arafat refused at Camp David [in 2000] to sign a peace agreement which left [Jerusalem's] al-Aqsa [mosque] under the control of Israel. Sharon wants to control Jerusalem, East and West. He wants to get rid of Abu Ammar. He accused him of starting the intifada and controlling the al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades."

Just one barber's view, of course. But what is disconcerting for all those who regard the accusation that Israel covertly assassinated Arafat as belonging on the wilder shores of conspiracy theory is how widely it is shared among level-headed Palestinians, from the West Bank streets to some of the upper reaches of their leadership.

Qaddoura Fares, the respected senior Fatah official now responsible for the welfare of the 4,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons, is a long-time advocate of peace negotiations on a two-state solution.

Yet, he too appears convinced, in the face of repeated denials by Israel, that a President he knew well was murdered on the orders of a Prime Minister who had a personal history of enmity with him going back more than 20 years, and who persistently depicted him as an "obstacle to peace".

Sharon, he says, understood well that Arafat was a uniquely unifying leader for the Palestinians and as a "militant leader" himself "the Israeli PM knew that the [second] intifada would not have happened without a green light from [Arafat]".

Now that the suspicion that he was poisoned has been revived by the identification of traces of deadly polonium on the clothes handed to investigators from the Al Jazeera TV channel by Arafat's widow, Suha, Mr Fares says the Israeli authorities had every reason to ensure that he died as if from natural causes.

"They didn't want him to die as a symbol. They didn't want to make him a martyr. They could easily have shot him if they wanted to."

Around the time in September 2003 when, in the aftermath of a double suicide bombing on a single day, Israel's cabinet took a non-specific, and apparently unfulfilled decision to "remove" Arafat from his Muqata compound in Ramallah, Mr Fares thinks Israel considered a number of options: continued isolation, deportation, arrest and arraignment before a military court – and assassination.

Dismissive of the Palestinian Authority's ability to investigate the death itself, Mr Fares says that the French investigation certainly looks more "credible" and that it will at least ensure that "the issue will be alive, and that it will go on chasing the Israelis".

Still in the coma triggered by the massive stroke which felled him in early 2006, Mr Sharon cannot answer the charges himself.

But while acknowledging Arafat's status as "one of Israel's worst enemies", Mr Sharon's closest lieutenant and former bureau chief Dov Weisglass rebutted them in some detail on Army Radio yesterday.

"We did not physically hurt him when Arafat was in his prime... so all the more so we had no interest in this kind of activity when he was politically sidelined," he said.

Mr Weisglass described having dinner with Javier Solana when the-then EU foreign policy chief took a call from Ahmed Qureia, the Palestinian Prime Minister, asking if Israel would allow the ailing President to be transferred to a Ramallah hospital, Mr Weisglass called Mr Sharon who immediately granted the request. He did the same following day when Mr Solana told Mr Weisglass that Palestinian doctors now said Arafat was very ill and needed treatment in Europe.

And Raanan Gissin, Mr Sharon's long-standing spokesman told the Associated Press that, as the intifada continued, Israeli officials repeatedly raised the option of assassinating Arafat but Sharon always rejected it. Israel "never touched a hair on his head," he said. "The idea was not to kill Arafat, but to change the Palestinian leadership."

But this is anyway not just about Israel. Even many Palestinians believe that if it is ever established that Arafat was assassinated, the truth could make uncomfortable reading in sections of the Palestinian leadership, given that inside help would almost certainly have been needed to reach a heavily guarded President whose food was always prudently shared with others.

Mr Fares, for his part, is certainly not attributing blame to anyone while soberly accepting that any inquiry would have to consider – among much else – the possibility that a Palestinian or Palestinians might have been involved.

Saying that all Palestinians need to give the French prosecutors whatever help they request, he points out the incriminating consequences of not doing so.

"If I am asked to go to Paris and be questioned, and I refuse, then I might as well kill myself," he says. Mr Fares's hope is that the French investigation will somehow begin to find real answers to the questions still swirling here about Arafat's final, fatal illness.

"Ninety per cent of Palestinians believe he was murdered, and 10 per cent that he died of natural causes," he says. "Even if the 10 per cent are right, we need to get to the truth."

Q&A: Polonium

Q. What is it?

Discovered by Marie Curie in the 19th century, polonium is a highly radioactive element, rarely found outside the military and scientific establishment. The particular isotope detected on Yasser Arafat's personal belongings – polonium 210 – occurs naturally in small concentrations in the environment. But high doses of the radioactive substance, which emits radiation in the form of alpha particles, can damage tissues and organs. These cannot pass through the skin, and to pose a danger polonium must be taken into the body, for example by eating it or breathing its radiation.

Q. Has it been used to poison people before?

Polonium hit the headlines in 2006, when it was used to kill the former Russian spy turned Kremlin critic Alexander Litvinenko. He died in November that year after falling suddenly ill in London. Subsequent tests found traces of radiation at various locations in London, and eventually linked Litvinenko's death to the presence of a large dose of polonium 210 in his body.

Q. How was Yasser Arafat linked to polonium?

Samples of clothes worn by the late Palestinian leader shortly before he fell ill were sent to a Swiss laboratory this year by the Al Jazeera television network, in co-operation with his widow and daughter. Scientists at the lab in Lausanne went on to discover significant traces of the radioactive element on his belongings.


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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby pentaiah » 30 Aug 2012 12:57

Forgive my ignorance
Will Arafat get his 72 or
They are held in Abeyance
Till the French say oui monnsieur ?

shyamd
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby shyamd » 30 Aug 2012 19:22

The Saudi press agency released a photo of him a few weeks back to dispel rumours.

------------------------

He will be in Turkey next week or week after to meet with the Turkish intel Chief Hakan fidan. Saudi intel operatives are posted in Adana where they are providing training and logistics along with other GCC and Turkish counterparts

Bandar will also be speaking with the Russian FSB chief about Syria as Moscow is apparently now the only capital that is backing Syria. Beijing is not really bothered. They are recruiting pakis ISI guys to fill the ranks of the GID as they don't have enough personell. They want to build a counterweight in Lebanon eastern KSA Bahrain and Iraq where Iran is trying to meddle.

Deputy GID chief is Bandars son!

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Surya » 30 Aug 2012 20:56

come on shyamd

give us some credit

a fotu?? from the Saudi official agency??





what next?? a real estate agent vouching for him

Let me know when he addresses a press conference or gives an interview or a photo with a current dignitary

PS I am in no hurry - they can take their time to have let plastic surgery etc to cover any burns shurns

Theo_Fidel

Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Theo_Fidel » 30 Aug 2012 21:35

Surya,

I don't think so. You are the one making the extraordinary claim that Bandar is dead from a bomb explosion. It is your responsibility to prove it rather than spreading FUD.
I would take another look at your evidence.
----------------------------------------

Meanwhile here is a more fine grained map of Syria's ethnic composition. You can see why the fighting in Hama is so vicious. You can also see that even in Latakia province the Alawites are not fully in control. Latakia city itself is Sunni majoritY.

BTW what the hell is a 7er shia?

The Assyrians, after whom Syria is named and who ruled this land are now 1.2%!!

Image

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby krisna » 30 Aug 2012 22:31

Remit of fear
About saudi barbaria and its policies
I fear the perverse purchase of petrodollars from Saudi Arabia: the twin ideologies of Salafism and Islamophobia. The State of Saudi Arabia exports to the rest of the world its Salafist ideology along with oil and petrodollars (here). Saudi Arabia represents the single largest source of remittances to a majority of majority Muslim countries. Remittances to the tune of more than US$30.0 to US$50.0 billion per year from workers employed in Saudi Arabia go to 29 mainly majority Muslim countries. These remittances are a significant portion of total remittances and have an impact on the GDPs of these countries. India alone earns US$24.0 billion in remittances from Saudi Arabia while Pakistan and Bangladesh each earn US$4.0 billion. Then there are the other Saudi financial outflows to these countries in terms of trade, oil, subsidized and free oil, and direct investments in all sorts of industries including banking, media, tourism. And there are philanthropic grants earmarked for furthering the Salafist thought. All together these add up to billions of dollars (here). Understandably, then, it pays royally not to criticize the State of Saudi Arabia or its actions and to remain silent. The specter for countries of being knocked off the gravy train and stripped of Saudi largess should the Saudi State be displeased can mean the loss of all the purchasing power and wealth being dispatched to millions upon millions of homes. It would mean the loss of thriving consumerism and prosperity. But that wealth is destroying whole homelands including Saudi Arabia.

about saudi barbaria rule and its people
I fear to imagine a country which produces no art, film, theater, song or dance. I fear the perverseness and madness that would build a seperate city for women instead of recognizing women as equal human beings. I fear such a state of gender apartheid, where women are buried alive in the form of seclusion. I fear a country that cannot function as a civilized member of the human community of nations and treats women, the entire gender, as pariahs (here). Yet such is the country created by the State of Saudi Arabia. I fear the reasons which cause 16 million citizens most of whom are not Saud in Saudi Arabia to remain silently compliant. The bulk of this population is under the age of 25 and disempowered and is ruled absolutely by old men who do not tolerate dissent or diversity of opinion. I fear the mindset that treats women as blots and clots to be erased or managed. The total population living in Saudi Arabia is an estimated between 27 million to 28 million of which 9 million are registered foreign workers and an estimated 2 million are illegal workers. 30% of the Saudi citizens are below the age of 14 and over 60% are below the age of 25. Of the youth 28.2% between 15-24 are unemployed. They are unemployed, under skilled and under achievers of their potential. They live off of the state provided stipends. The heavy lifting in manual labor as well as professional skilled work and managerial work is all handled by foreigners.

I fear that while Saudi Arabia is oil rich it is poor in every other way. It is impoverished of water. It is impoverished of agricultural land. I fear the wholesale purchase of water-wealthy lands and homelands by the house of Saud investors. A few references about water: here, about land here, here, here and here.

barbarias effect on muslims
I fear that these remittances and financial outflows are destroying homelands. I fear that after thirty years of petrodollar bonanzas and propaganda, Muslims are unable to delink Islam from the House of Saud. There are 5000 Saud and in comparison there are 1.2 billion Muslims all over the world. A majority of whom, for a myriad of reasons including illiteracy, poverty and sudden wealth are unable to resist or protest against the Saudi influence upon them. I fear that the populations of the world are unable to resist, protest and fight against the privatization of all that is their sacred to them: their lands where they grow their food, to the places where they congregate and live, to their own thoughts and even their bodies. I fear that people are afraid and unwilling to speak up against the Saudi regime because of the power of the remittances. I fear that the purchasing power of remittances is a powerful disincentive to resist or question the Salafist ideology espoused by the House of Saud. I fear that both the majority of Muslims, illiterate and uninformed of their own history and faith and the venal nature of their ruling classes whose money has come from the petrodollar bonanza will offer little resistance to the Salafist advance.


about pakis- viewtopic.php?p=1331674#p1331674

I fear that the power of the Salafist Saud because of their petro dollars and the dependency of the middle class all over the Muslim world on lucrative jobs as domestic servants to skilled workers and executives in construction, trading, banking and healthcare are akin to an oil spill which is choking Islam and its many diverse communities

what the author thinks of herself
I fear but I cannot remain silent. While being applauded in the shadows for showing courage I have been told that I should be afraid of writing against the Kingdom of Saud and that it is wiser to remain silent. I have received primarily two types of responses: one applauding me for my “courage” and the other accusing me of “sectarian propaganda”. Both of these are astonishing, bewildering and frankly frightening. I did not write The Architects of the War on Islam, out of courage but rather out of fear. I am not brave I am afraid. However, if being on the side of the public or of the people is to be sectarian then so be it. I fear that the applause in the shadows and the lack of strong vocal resistance is equally discouraging and threatening. The applause in the shadows is as much a coercion towards silence. But now the time has come, silence won’t make a difference it won’t keep anyone safe. I fear that both of these views that it should take courage to speak up and that to speak up is sectarian contribute to the architecture of war and the condoning of silence. The power of violence and the financing of violent power bring about this notion of courage because silence is security. Much is at stake if people are not silent. Much is at stake if people remain silent. I fear that this absolute power wielded by the Saud demands that those who speak up against it must be viewed as sectarian.


About Kaaba
I fear that Muslims have remained largely silent about the violence done by Salafists on people and on the Ka’aba too, while there has been much rage about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and its spillover into Pakistan. During the last decade the Salafists have been silently busy destroying, including through construction by erecting monstrosities surrounding the Ka 'aba and destroying historical sites. This was going on while there was the destruction of unaccounted for homes in Iraq and Afghanistan wars and their destruction of whole towns and villages. All the while the Salafists have been raging their own war against whole communities of people mostly Muslim, while the Ka’aba too was being destroyed by them.

I fear, as to what may be the reasons for why UNESCO has remained silent about the destruction of the Ka’aba. Why have Muslim states remained silent about this? Why have those who’ve gone to perform the Haj remained silent. Is it because all of them can’t afford to earn the ire of the State of Saudi Arabia?

I fear that Haj and the Ka’aba, a central principal of Islam, sacred to 1.2 billion people have been privatized, by an estimated 5000 people belonging to one family. Why? How is the privatization of the Ka'aba different from the wholesale seizure and privatization of the commons and public lands and spaces all over the world? I fear that the Ka’aba and the Haram Shareef which is sacred to 1.2 billion people has been privatized and occupied by the members of one family and that this is the same as what is happening to the entire world and its public goods and commons and public space which have been eroded and literally stolen from the people. Public space which has been stolen, through war, occupation, and the creation of sectarian strife has led to the clearing of whole tracts of lands of their owners and users. Signs of “no trespassing” and barbed wires are going up everywhere. And security and police forces are being used to primarily enforce the ownership of the new private owners who have almost all the worlds resources and wealth concentrated in their hands and are as though a close kinship of financial interests: The Saud, Shell Oil, British Petroleum, Exxon, Haliburton, Bechtel Corporation, Dyncorp, Xe (formerly known as Blackwater) and so forth and so on.


Remittances
I fear Saudi Arabia’s main products and exports: oil, remittances and Wahabism. Saudi Arabia has an estimated 7,288,900 million foreign workers from 29 countries. Most of these workers are from countries with sizeable or majority Muslim populations. These workers in Saudi Arabia are employed in its petroleum industry and its related benefits in construction, domestic work, hospitals, finance and banking services, and other service Of these workers in Saudi Arabia, India has the largest contingent there of 1,452,927 workers. Followed by Pakistan and Egypt with each having 1,005,873 workers. Then Yemen: 894,109, followed by Philippines 558,818, Bangladesh 447,055. Sri Lanka: 391,173; Indonesia 279,409; Sudan 279,409; Jordon 172,266; Kuwait 136,916; Syria 111,764; West Bank and Gaza 122,608. The rest are from Afghanistan 17,227; Chad 11,231; Eriteria 40,644; Ethiopia 28,618; Lebanon 58,261; , Morocco 20,584; Nepal 18,282;, Nigeria 14,976; Somalia 27,252; Thailand 23,547;, Tunisia 12,410, Turkey 89,411; United Kingdom 31,999; and USA 36,258. Data on bilateral migration and remittances is available (here).

India earns US$64.0 billion from remittances which represents 3% of its GDP of which a very significant amount a third or a reported US$24.0 billion is from an estimated 1.5 million high skilled workers in Saudi Arabia (here and here).

This makes Saudi Arabia the single largest source of remittances for Pakistan—it is the largest employer of Pakistani skilled labor and is Pakistan’s supplier of cheap and subsidized if not free oil. A benefit, which has routinely, been threatened to be cut off, if Pakistan does not tow the Saudi line.

effects on muslims in other countries
Everywhere in the world where there are Muslim populations a new feature, the Saud-ization of society has steadily encroached into the traditions and cultures: the full covering of women in the Saudi desert style no matter the country or climate (this change has happened in the cities of Saudi Arabia as well in the past two decades), and this garb is a pre-requisite for setting foot in Saudi Arabia outside of the expatriate compounds there; the rise of mosques with sharp, missile like minarets in the Salafist taste of architecture even in places such as Bosnia where this is now being resisted and stopped, the presence of men in unruly beards and clothing associated with the Arabian desert, insertion and replacement of greetings and religious terms in Arabic rather than in local languages and finally the names given to children in the past two decades are specifically Arabic and not Bosnian, South Asian, or Bengali, Turkish and so forth.


effect on islam
The noise has targeted Islam and benefited the Saud ideology and left it intact and in fact advancing. The twin sentiments of Salafism and Islamophobia are on the rise. Both are dangerous, violent and destructive. There has been scant discussion of the exported and enforced ideology from the State of Saudi Arabia or a public discussion on a forensic analysis of the financial flows and their support of extremism. While the Saudi State has remained focused on what is profitable for the royal family and their creed, the main stream Muslims, Sunni and Shi’a have fallen further into their ridiculous fissures and diverted themselves into increasing polarization towards cultish adherence to personalities rather than principles and values. This complete dissolution of discourse was started by the ridiculously childish, tactless and disgraceful action of a fatwa three decades ago by Ayatollah Khomeni on Salman Rushdie for his novel Satanic verses. A fatwa which Khomeni hastily woke up to months after newspapers in Iran and in Pakistan and elsewhere had routinely reviewed the book and not blinked. Only after Kashmiris rioted in Srinagar and considered it an insult to their religious beliefs did the champions of Islam in Pakistan and Iran and elsewhere hastily move to further idiocy. An idiocy so colossally perpetuated, that the worldwide Murdochized media championed it relentlessly from then onwards. Rushdie went from being a novelist to a central issue of foreign policy and an article of faith for the West and for every Muslim country as if there were no other more pressing issues such as the war being waged against the Soviets in Afghanistan or the Iraq initiated war on Iran. And all the while the extreme ideology of Salafists was on the rise. Since then, uttering anything that is counter to the extremist view of the world is in danger of being labeled as a blasphemy if it’s expedient to do so. Since then fear reigns supreme and wisdom dictates silence and Salafism and Islamophobia grow louder and flourish.


also read the comments.

author is a paki writer working in world bank, living in massa.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby krisna » 30 Aug 2012 22:55

war on islam

This is addressed to Muslims who think that Islam is under attack: They are right. Just take a look at the images of the House that Abraham built, the Ka’aba and see how progresses that ancient attack. Just look at the transformation of the environs of the Ka’aba and the Haram Shareef into a garish resort rivaling Las Vegas or Atlantic City. Just look, at the transformation of the sacred environs of the Haram Shareef into a shopping mall and Disney world--to understand the war on Islam and who is responsible for waging it. Just look at this and see how Islam has been trafficked as though it were a bonded slave, dressed up in bells and baubles to be whipped and sold in the marketplace. Who is it, Muslims should ask themselves, who has undertaken to do this and has destroyed and defaced the symbols, the reminders, the graves, the homes of the Prophet and his family? And is this okay with them that this should happen to their most revered place of worship? This Ramzan Muslims should reflect on the image of the “renovations” in Mecca around the Ka’aba and the Haram Shareef and ask themselves about the war on Islam.


who is waging the war on islam-- the enemies-- the saud family.
The responsibility for this destruction lies with the House of Saud. This war on Islam continues and has been waged from the birth of Islam 15 centuries ago. And it has been strengthened in the last century thanks to oil. The Saudi so called royal family of 5000 persons and its grantees of oil wealth and its courtiers, princes, princesses, sheikhs and sheikhas—all of them, barring none-- have done their utmost to insult, humiliate and destroy the religious belief systems of 1.2 billion Muslims and their holiest of shrines.


The Saud are not from Hejaz. Yet they claim as a birth right their custodianship of Islam itself. The birthplace of the Prophet and Islam is Mecca. The cities of Mecca and Medina are in Hejaz.

The Saud are not from Al Ahsa (here). Yet, the Saud’s wealth comes from oil in the province of Al Ahsa. Ever since they have gained ownership of the entire Arabian peninsula and the oil, thanks to the British in the early 20th century, and to the Americans, they have succeeded, fourteen centuries after the Prophet's death in restoring their gods to Mecca. And they have also financed militaries and security apparatuses that keep their hold on the oil secured. The majority population of Muslims in Al Ahsa where the oil is located do not share the traditions of Saud they are Shi’a.

The Saud, are from Najd. The Saud are from the Banu Hanafi tribe which is one of eight or ten major tribes in the Najd. The word Najd means highlands. The Najd has a harsh climate and it was mostly barren and isolated at the time of the Prophet and till 1932 when the fortunes of the Saud changed. Riyadh was the largest settlement in Najd which after 1932 was declared the capital of Saudi Arabia by the Saud who became its rulers. Most tribes there were nomadic and even those that became sedentary originally were nomadic. Harsh terrain and a harsh climate made the nomadic way of life one that was focused on survival of all the animals in the flock including humans. The rules and laws of the tribes were therefore in harsh adherence to the purpose of survival and procreation. Men, women, goats, sheep, cows and camels were equally tattooed, covered, circumcised, birthed culled, cut and slaughtered as was seen fit to keep the tribe strong and safe from the harsh life. Following a leader was critical. Dissent could mean a wrong decision and endangering the entire tribe. To question the tribal leader’s judgment could mean leading the tribe into peril, away from water or straight into the path of disaster. Dissent had to therefore be harshly and swiftly and publically punished for the sake of survival. Insular behavior was rewarded and risk taking was not.

The Saud can claim no other cultural or human achievement except surviving in the cruel rocky barren mountainous terrain and giving sanctuary to Al Wahab in the 18th century and his ideals called Wahabism. :(( The Saud’s kingdom of Saudi Arabia created in 1932 at the time that oil was discovered in Bahrain and Al Ahsa is based on these Wahabi ideals. They also had an admirable knack for expediency, which foolishly, was referred to as hypocrisy, by revolutionaries or idealists to their own peril. These tribes of the Najd only made alliances when it became expedient for them to do so. They agreed to an alliance with Mohammad but not allegiance to him or to Islam. :eek:


The Saud have held the Haram Shareef hostage. Just look at how it has been transformed by them. The Saud’s alliances and allegiances to themselves and their belief systems is evidenced amongst other things by their treatment of the Ka’aba. The Ka’aba today seems as though it were a project of revenge of avenging their own family’s ancestors for the humiliation they felt when the Prophet more than 1400 years ago returned victorious from his exile in Medina, into Mecca and went straight into the Ka’aba and destroyed their stone idols, their Gods, which they adored. Today, it seems that they the Saud are embarked on the project of destroying what the Prophet did.
:P

The Saud are from the place from where the Prophet at the birth of Islam faced continuous opposition. It was from Najd that Islam faced its greatest threat. Islam’s history is replete with references to this opposition to Islam from Najd. The Koran itself has references to this opposition and disbelief: the chapter “Repentance” refers to them: “The village Arabs are more obstinate in disbelief and hypocrisy and impervious to ordinances revealed to His Apostle by God; yet God is aware of everything and is wise.” and “Some of these rustics take whatever they spend in the way of God as a penalty, and wait for an adverse turn in your (addressed to the Prophet) fortune.”


what should muslims do--??
Muslims should question themselves as to how could an isolated tribe from a region historically opposed to Islam rise to power and take control of Ka'aba and Islam. Muslims should question themselves about the relationship between this rise and the discovery of oil in Hejaz in 1932. When was Saudi Arabia created? 1932. And when did Wahibism begin to rise from a belief in a nowhere land mountain range in Arabia to spread across the globe? 1932. Muslims should ask themselves who are these custodians of the Ka’aba and what right do they have to occupy it and to have absolute and total control and ownership over it in the way that they do? Who gives them legitimacy and who enforces that legitimacy? Who protects them and secures them? Who benefits? Who loses? Where is the oil located in the Saudi peninsula? Why is the Arabian peninsula called Saudi Arabia? How and why was the name of the clan of Saud given to an entire region in 1932? A region whose majority population and sub regions have nothing to do with the tribe or clan of Saud? Those who never accepted Islam are now the custodians of it. Those who never accepted Islam now claim to be the founders, the definers the protectors of it! Those who are now poised to destroy Islam and all symbols of its origins and humanity are the custodians, the kidnappers and hostage takers of the Ka’aba itself. It is they, the House of Saud that has taken Islam hostage, it is they who have buried Islam, up to its neck in mud and it is they who stone it to death with their actions, policies and ideology and it is they who are poised with the gleaming sword of their emblem to behead it.

wonderful set of questions for pious to ponder..

Thanks to the Saud a reversal of Islam is underway: Now a hideous clock tower, garish shopping malls for the rich, and equally vulgar billboards and skyscraper hotels for the wealthy dwarf the Ka’aba and its sanctity. Muslims should ask themselves how it could be possible that public toilets have been built where the house of Hazrat Kadija the wife of the Prophet Mohammad used to be. How is it possible that the graves of the Prophet’s family have been razed to the ground? :eek: This has been done in the name of adhering to a pure Islam? It has nothing to do with Islam, the faith of the Prophet Mohammad.


The Sauds' power of petrodollars has spread the insidious venom of hatred for the teachings of Mohammad from Riyadh to Washington DC to Mindanao from Jakarta to Aguelhok. It is they, the hereditary enemies of Mohammad’s Islam who are the current custodians of the Ka’aba. It is clear in all their actions—of violence, and immorality and greed and debauchery that it is they who have never accepted Islam. It is their brand of beliefs which espouses the subjugation, humiliation and torture of women, the destruction of monotheistic and Abrahamic spirituality, the adherence to monarchy, hatred of the vulnerable and poor, extreme inequality of humans and the worship of money. A reading of historical references including the Koran show that from Najd, from where the Saud originate, there has always been an animosity a fissure, mischief making and diversion with the Prophet and his faith and it is they who have from the time of the Prophet sought to destroy the faith that the Prophet Mohammad had sprung on them.

The Saud have financed much destruction of Islam and its shrines and now their target is closing in on the shrine in Damascus of the revered lady, Hazrat Zainab, the granddaughter of the Prophet Mohammad. Is it to become a “casualty” of their civil war? Is the shrine about to face the same fate as the destruction of the holy shrines across the globe funded by Saudi petro dollars? The shrine is threatened and in danger of being destroyed much like other shrines, by the same venom that holds the Ka’aba hostage and has defaced it.


americans--
For the Americans it may be about oil. Keeping the ownership of the oil in the hands of the Saud and protecting them is greased by funding their belief system. The images of US Presidents one after another arm in arm or holding hands with, or kissing the cheeks of and bending over the hands of Saudi Kings, as if pledging allegiance, are instructive.
:rotfl:

The Saud must be admired for strategic thinking and entrepreneurial expediency. They are not from Hejaz which is the birthplace of the Prophet Mohammad and Islam. The Saud are not from Al Ahsa where the richest oil fields on earth are located. The Saud are from Najd from where during the time of the Prophet and his four Caliphs there was a constant opposition to Islam. Now in the twenty first century the Saud, the architects of war on Islam seem to be poised for victory on the House of Abraham, the house of the Prophet Mohammad.




wow! author - a rare paki- kuods to her.
will be cutlet if it goes to mainstream aam abduls.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby RamaY » 30 Aug 2012 23:24

^ AoA onleee...

Either this RAPE will be halaled or the TIRP is moving west wards.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Prem » 31 Aug 2012 00:08

http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/ ... kurdistan/
The Rise of Independent Kurdistan?Adam Garfinkle
This protracted game forms the essential background against which to understand the current policies of the Kurds in the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) in Iraq and Kurds elsewhere, as well as the policies of the four national governments toward the Kurds. No one forgets anything in this part of the world. The principals remember details, slights not least, that most American State Department, Defense Department, and intelligence community officials responsible for this region never knew in the first place.Second, for the first time ever there is a Kurdish epicenter to which other Kurds can look for inspiration, guidance, and actual political and economic coordination: that center is of course the KRG. The next issue of The American Interest, November/December 2012, will feature an analysis of Kurdish prospects by a truly world-class expert that details the development of the KRG from an accidental autonomous zone, the result of two Gulf Wars, into what for all practical purposes is a de facto sovereign state. Suffice it to say for now that the KRG is a going concern that is not going to be reabsorbed into a unitary Iraqi state. Not only does the new Iraqi constitution concede as much, but the Kurds have also marshaled enough power and morale to fend off any imaginable effort by Baghdad to subdue them.

Kurds in Syria, Iran, and Turkey know that, and this has made a discernible difference in how these four Kurdish communities relate to one another. In particular, Syrian Kurds now caught in the midst of a collapsing Syrian state have every reason to make common cause with Iraqi Kurds, and Iraqi Kurds have every reason—some ideological, some geostrategic—to return the favor. But this, as Walter has suggested, just restarts the great game in and around Kurdistan. It is conceivable, theoretically at least, that the union of KRG territory in Iraq with Kurdish territory in Syria could reach all the way to the Mediterranean. That would certainly revolutionize heretofore landlocked Kurdish circumstances. The Turkish government knows this and, with the most to lose in the face of a burgeoning Greater Kurdistan movement, realizes that it must prevent such a notion from moving from theory into reality.

This is the underlying strategic calculus behind the recent Turkish threats and exertions concerning the supposed Syrian reactivation of support for the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party). The Turks claim that the Assad regime has again turned to using these particularly nasty Marxist Kurds against Turkey, as it did for a very long time in the past. The Turks had to capture their leader and credibly threaten an invasion to get the Syrians to stop. There is no reason to doubt Turkish accusations. At the same time, what the Syrian regime is doing creates a real dilemma for the Barzani leadership of the KRG, and that brings us to our third point of change.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Prem » 31 Aug 2012 00:12

In 20 years time, Kurdistan will be a new Dubai. Hope GOI is aware of this cmong transformation. Non Turkish port access through Syria for them will change the face of whole region.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby shyamd » 31 Aug 2012 01:31

^^ Forget 20 years. Its happening today. In less than 5 years they will have transformed. it has already transformed in the last 5 years. We are very much got our sights on Kurdistan. Reliance is actually pulling out - they are in negotiations with Chevron.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby shyamd » 31 Aug 2012 01:47

Surya wrote:come on shyamd

give us some credit

a fotu?? from the Saudi official agency??

what next?? a real estate agent vouching for him

Let me know when he addresses a press conference or gives an interview or a photo with a current dignitary

PS I am in no hurry - they can take their time to have let plastic surgery etc to cover any burns shurns


You should email Qatar News Agency for footage as they said that the Emir of Qatar was seen off at the airport by Bandar last week. Also maybe the US ambassador who was invited to a public event with him a week after the rumours to prove that he was alive. Nightwatch also wrote an article about him being alive after initially saying he was not seen. NYT have also written an article about it. The fact that the iranian articles said he was "mortally wounded" is already proven wrong by the same agencies that reported them! They are still writing articles about him!

Just saying....

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Philip » 31 Aug 2012 05:59

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldne ... unker.html

Iran has 'doubled capacity to refine uranium at underground bunker'
Iran has more than doubled its capacity to refine uranium at an underground bunker, the UN said on Thursday night as Tehran was accused of re-activating the shadowy scientist at the heart of its alleged nuclear weapons programme.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby shyamd » 31 Aug 2012 14:23

Russia is disengaging from Syria: Arms shipments stopped, warships exit Tartus
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 29, 2012, 4:44 PM (GMT+02:00) Tags: Russia Syria Tartus arms shipment Vladimir Putin

Russian Navy in Tartus
Russian naval vessels have unexpectedly departed the Syrian Mediterranean port of Tartus and Russian arms shipments to Syria have been suddenly discontinued. DEBKAfile’s military sources reveal that those and other steps indicate that the Russians are rapidly drawing away from the Syrian arena to avoid getting caught up in the escalating hostilities expected to arise from military intervention by the US, Europe and a number of Arab states. Russian intelligence appears to have decided that this outside intervention is imminent and Moscow looks anxious to keep its distance for now.
According to our military and Russian sources, these drastic steps must have been personally ordered by President Vladimir Putin. He is believed to have acted over the objections of some of his army and naval chiefs. This would explain the mixed statements issuing from Moscow in recent days about the disposition of Russian personnel at the naval base in Tartus and Russian military personnel in Syria.
Wednesday, Aug. 22, Commander of the Russian Navy Vice Adm. Viktor Chirkov said that if the fighting in Syria reached Tartus, Moscow may decide to evacuate the base. He stressed that this decision would have to be taken on the authority of President Putin. He was the first Russian official to suggest the possibility of an evacuation.
A week later, Aug. 28, Russian chief of staff Gen. Nikolai Makarov denied anything had changed in the working procedures of Russian military personnel in Syria or that there were any plans to evacuate the Russian naval base in Tartus:
"I think it's too early to draw conclusions [from the situation in Syria]," said the general. "No one is running away from there.”
When a Russian journalist pressed the general and ventured to ask whether Moscow was terminating its military involvement in Syria, Marakov retorted, “Why are you so worried about Syria?"
But he didn’t answer the question.
DEBKAfile's military sources disclose that the Russians have taken five significant military steps with regard to Syria in the last two weeks:
1. They cancelled a large-scale naval exercise dubbed “Caucasus 2012” scheduled to start mid-August in the eastern Mediterranean opposite the Syrian coast;
2. Warships from three fleets - the Northern, Baltic and Black Sea – concentrated opposite Syria have dispersed and returned to their bases;
3. Syrian President Bashar Assad was notified that Moscow was halting military aid to his army - except for intelligence updates and advice on logistics from Russian military advisers;
4. Moscow has not clearly announced a freeze on arms shipments, including replacement parts for Russian weapons, which make up the bulk of the Syrian army's weaponry. Officials have only said, “There are no large Russian weapons shipments planned in the near future to Syria."
5. The only Russian naval ship left in Tartus - a floating Russian Navy PM-138 shipyard – is also under orders to depart Tartus and return to the Black Sea in September.
A Russian source disclosed that all the remaining Russian personnel in Tartus have gathered on the floating shipyard, except for two officers on shore. This vessel and the remaining personnel are evidently packed up and ready to sail at any moment out of the Syrian port.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby eklavya » 31 Aug 2012 15:41

shyamd, regarding your source (DEBKA):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debka.com

Israeli intelligence officials do not consider even 10 percent of the site's content to be reliable

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby shyamd » 31 Aug 2012 15:56

^^ I don't either, but when reading them over the last 5 years, they either get it bang on or totally false. And FYI that is not my source.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby eklavya » 31 Aug 2012 16:02

To make some sense of all the dis-information being spread (including on BR) about the conflict in Syria, here is some sound analysis:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-19414144

Viewpoint: Syria set for drawn-out conflict

By Fawaz A Gerges

Middle East analyst

As violence spreads to almost every corner of Syria, there is no longer any doubt that the country is engulfed in all-out war.
In August alone, more than 3,000 Syrians were reported killed.

The death toll from the massacre in Darayya - more than 400 dead over two days according to some reports - is not only a reflection of the increasing number of Syrians being killed on a daily basis, but also a sign of the heightened brutality and meteoric escalation of the raging civil war.

Another indicator that the Syrian conflict has spiralled out of control is the flood of Syrian refugees inside and outside the country.

The UN estimates that more than 170,000 refugees have already sought sanctuary in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq - a number that has increased rapidly over the past week.

Speaking to reporters in Geneva, an UNHCR spokesperson said that the number of refugees escaping to Turkey had risen to 5,000 a day from 400 or 500 daily few weeks ago.

The number of refugees crossing into Jordan rose to 10,200 over past week from 4,500 the previous week. The Syrian refugees fleeing are on top of the 1.2 million Syrians who have fled their homes, but remain within the country.

Military spread thin

It is a tug of war with no foreseeable end: despite temporary gains made by the government and the opposition in different parts of the country, neither side can deliver a knockout blow.

Far from the beginning of the end, the Syrian struggle will most likely be a long, drawn-out conflict. No-one knows how long it will last and what will be the consequences for the war-torn country and its neighbours.

President Assad has said he "needs time" to bring the conflict to a "decisive end"
The armed wing of the opposition has managed to strike at the heart of the Assad regime, yet it does not seem to possess the capabilities and means to consolidate its gains.

Despite efforts at unifying its ranks, the opposition remains operationally and ideologically fragmented with dozens of armed factions waging their own battles. Adding another dimension are the Islamists whose increasing numbers and tactics alarm both Syrians and outsiders.

The Assad regime, despite massive firepower at its disposal, is overextended and feels the pinch as fighting spreads geographically. Its core forces are strained and spread thin, unable to crush the rebels who have become more effective, better organised, armed and skilled.

The battle of Aleppo is a clear example of this impasse: after more than four weeks of the authorities' attempts to "cleanse" the city, thousands of rebels remain entrenched in many of the largest Syrian city's neighbourhoods.

President Assad conceded that there is military stalemate during an interview with privately-owned Dunya television, saying: "I can sum up all this explanation in one sentence: We are moving forward. The situation is practically better but it has not been decided yet. That takes time."

Whether Assad's days are numbered is irrelevant.

The more critical question is why has the Assad regime, which could easily outlast its figurehead, proven to be more resilient and cohesive than the received wisdom in Western capitals?

Cultivated loyalty

The opposition Free Syrian Army is operationally and ideologically fragmented There are several reasons. Most importantly, the durability of the Assad rule has depended not only on coercion and domination but also on political hegemony, co-option and the balancing of various interest and communal groups.

Both the father and the son cultivated relations with Sunni, Christian, and Druze businessmen and promoted financial and business networks, especially in Damascus and Aleppo, Syria's centres of political and economic life and home to more than one-third of the country's 23 million people.

The Assad regime is resilient because of the loyalty it has cultivated among its upper echelon over the past 40 years.

This is not a loyalty based solely on Alawite identity, nor on money alone, influence and exclusivity that has benefited regime cronies from all sects.

It has also benefited from the existential cohesiveness of minorities and communities who signed on to a regime that has successfully branded itself as a protector. As the fighting spreads and loyalties harden, the fear among these core supporters that they will be slaughtered and executed is real.

It is a deadly game of survival, and many have chosen to cling to what they know.


Accentuating the deadlock between the regime and the armed opposition is interference by outside powers that have turned Syria into a war by proxy.

On the one hand, there are Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar which back the opposition with arms and money, while on the other is Iran. Iran provides pivotal support to the Assad regime and has made it clear that it will not allow its ouster by force.

"Iran will not allow the axis of resistance, of which it considers Syria to be an essential part, to be broken in any way," Saeed Jalili, Iran's security chief told President Assad in a visit to Damascus earlier this month.

Despite the heated rhetoric of Western powers, they have resigned themselves to the fact that little can be done to bring about an immediate end to the Syrian conflict.

With the exception of the lone voice of French President Francois Hollande who - perhaps motivated by domestic politics - called for the Syrian opposition to form a provisional government which his administration would recognise, the United States and its Western allies do not have the political will and desire to intervene militarily in the war-torn country.

Ironically, the US State Department scoffed at Mr Hollande's suggestion as premature.


'Every inch of soil'

Given this lack of co-ordination, not to mention that Russia would fiercely oppose the establishment of military safe zones in Syria, it is unlikely there will be a repeat of the Libyan scenario.

As Syria descends into all-out war with no end in sight, more voices in the region have begun to call for a political solution, for the two warring camps to negotiate a way out of their deadly embrace.

"The situation in Syria," said Nabil al-Arabi, Secretary General of the Arab League, last week, "is going from bad to worse... Imagine the situation where one Syrian gets killed, then consider the hundreds we can't see."

And Lakhdar Brahimi, Kofi Annan's replacement as envoy to Syria, is also solution-seeking: "We have got to try," he said. "We have got to see that the Syrian people are not abandoned."

Iran and Egypt have also proposed initiatives to resolve the conflict.

Unfortunately, the odds are against a political solution because both camps view the struggle as existential and have hunkered down for the long haul.

The opposition has repeatedly said it will not negotiate with the Assad regime unless Assad first steps down, which is unlikely.

As Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem told Robert Fisk of the Independent: "We are fighting armed groups inside Aleppo, in the Damascus suburbs, before that in Homs and Idlib and this means fighting within Syrian cities - and our responsibility is to protect our people."

This followed news of military helicopters dropping leaflets, warning the rebels that they would "cleanse every inch of Syrian soil" and they must surrender their weapons or face death.

If history serves as a guide, civil wars come to an end when either one faction strikes a decisive blow or combatants get exhausted.

In the Syrian case, neither condition is conceivable any time soon. In the meantime, the Syrian people, whatever their loyalties, will continue to suffer.

Fawaz A Gerges is a professor of international relations at the London School of Economics where he directs the Middle East Centre. His book "Obama and the Middle East: The End of America's Moment?" has just been released.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby eklavya » 31 Aug 2012 16:10

shyamd wrote:^^ I don't either, but when reading them over the last 5 years, they either get it bang on or totally false. And FYI that is not my source.


Looks like Israeli intelligence thinks their reliability is less than 10%. Best if this is disclosed when posting a story from this source, something like, "According to highly unreliable website DEBKA ... " :)

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby shyamd » 31 Aug 2012 16:13

Their sources are the Israeli intel community who spread disinfo through it. Like I said they are either bang on or totally false. But in an intel agency - this is the type of info people get, its up to the analyst to decipher it and make sense of what they have.

There was once a website called India daily - it used to provide info on supposed Alien visits to India (not kidding!) and then they also had an article about DRDO's latest program - ABMs to shoot down Paki and PRC missiles. People on BR laughed it off and said totally false. About 6 months later the PAD/AAD program was announced. So lesson is, its upto the reader to decipher things

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby shyamd » 31 Aug 2012 19:07

Haaretz reporting that Merkel Aunty rang up Bibi to ask him not to attack Iran.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby pentaiah » 31 Aug 2012 23:22

shyamd wrote:Haaretz reporting that Merkel Aunty rang up Bibi to ask him not to attack Iran.

Now Aunty will be asked to pay royalty for not attacking Iran and Aunty will comply in cash or kind :rotfl:

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Philip » 01 Sep 2012 04:07

Forget the Debka report.Here is another with a deeper analysis why the Russians are pulling out.The sh*t is going to hit the fan and this time it is the jackbooted Germans of Frau Merkel who are queering the pitch! Germany is on the march again,Ja?

The Russians do not want to go down the bloody battered road of war that has consumed the Yanquis and their poodles for the last decade,beggaring them in the process,sending their economies reeling.Putin's attitude appears to be to try as hard as preventing conflict but if the west are hell-bent upon starting another war,and getting their hands all bloody again and up to their knees in sh*t,then let them drown in their own bloodshed! By simply staying out of the conflict Russia's position is further strengthened.What is a signal change in the global arena is the return of the Nazis...oops! Sorry,the Germans and their jackboot foreign policy.The richest country in Europe,Germany as der Fuhrer predicted would "rise again in 50 years time" and reassert itself.He was spot on!

http://www.thetrumpet.com/article/9807. ... e-in-syria

Deal or No Deal?—Russia Suspends Naval Base in Syria
August 30, 2012 • From theTrumpet.com

Xcpt:
Russia has suspended the use of its only warm-water naval base in Tartus, on the Syrian coast. Moscow has maintained that it will continue to support Syrian president Bashar al-Assad on a political level, but the naval withdrawal has sent a clear message that Russia will not go so far as to support the regime with military force.

“Our naval base in Tartus will not support a military option. We cannot physically act militarily against countries supporting the Syrian opposition,” a Russian Defense Ministry source told the Russian daily Nezavisimaya Gazeta.

The message comes at a bad time for President Assad’s Alawite regime, when the West has begun to actively support the opposition.

Russia has gone to lengths to shore up its relationships with Syria and Iran over the last few years, but with the recent suspension of the Tartus naval base, Russia may be making a clear change in foreign policy. Earlier this month in an interview with Courcy’s Intelligence Report, former Russian Foreign Minister Yevgeniy Primakov confirmed that Russia would continue to support Syria and President Assad. But he also indicated that such support might have its limits, calling the current stance “not necessarily a winning position.” Assad’s situation has since deteriorated further.

It appears that a deal over the future of Syria is in the process of being cut between Russia and the West.

German Foreign Policy released a report on Wednesday stating that Germany has constructed a plan of action concerning the situation in Syria. The plan includes a concept for a new ruling order to replace Assad.

Germany’s intervention in the Syrian situation is interesting. It clashes with its overt hands-off approach toward other Arab Spring uprisings in Libya and Egypt. Why the sudden change?

In his Trumpet column on April 19, Brad Macdonald stated, “One of Germany’s primary aims in the Middle East is to develop an axis with Middle Eastern states that opposes Iran.” That is the reason for Germany building its relationships with nations like Turkey and Saudi Arabia. Syria is perhaps Iran’s greatest ally, but the Syrian civil war has a chance to change that. Along with other Western nations, Germany is stepping up its influence over Syria to gain another fulcrum against Iran. This is why Germany has made a stronger move in Syria—and why Russia appears to be reacting.



The neo-imperial Ottoman plan to set up a safe haven within Syria as a secure launchpad from which an assault upon the Assad regime can be orchestrated in the future,using the motley "rebels" and western mercenary outfits,appears to have come a cropper with this report.This only appears to increase the chances of western mil. involvement as their options to remove Assad by other means fail.

AP Analysis: Syria diplomacy stalls over safe zone
Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/08/31/2 ... rylink=cpy

[/quote]By ROBERT H. REID
Associated Press

Turkey's non-starter call for a humanitarian safe zone inside Syria offers the clearest sign yet that diplomacy to end the bloodshed in the most violent uprising of the Arab Spring is at a dead end.

Any new push by the international community to stop the killing is likely to remain on hold until the new U.N. chief envoy to Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, gets his feet on the ground and - more importantly - until the Nov. 6 U.S. presidential election.

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and other prominent Republicans have called for arming Syrian rebels, a step critics fear would only escalate the violence without necessarily bringing a quick end to a more than 17-month conflict that activists say has killed more than 20,000 people.

In the meantime, countries in the region - Turkey, Israel, Jordan and Iraq - will be scrambling to contain the violence and keep the conflict from spilling across their borders.

A desire to contain the conflict was in large measure behind Turkey's appeal Thursday to the U.N. Security Council to establish a safe zone for civilians in parts of northern Syria under nominal rebel control.

That would enable the Turks to cut off the flow of refugees across their border. About 80,000 Syrians have already fled into Turkey, and hostility to the presence of so many foreigners is rising among Turks living in Antakya and other border communities.

But the Turkish proposal sank like a stone. The council meeting ended without even a non-binding statement of support, much less a binding resolution.

A frustrated Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu told the council that he'd come to New York in hopes the members would take "long overdue steps" to alleviate the suffering and establish camps inside Syria for those forced to flee their homes.

"Apparently, I was wrong about my expectations," Davutoglu said.

Like so many other proposals to end the fighting, the Turkish appeal was all but dead on arrival, given the risks of creating such a zone and the hostility of veto-wielding Russia and China to any proposal that is not accepted by Syrian President Bashar Assad.

The Russians and the Chinese have already vetoed three Western-backed council resolutions that would threaten Assad's government with international sanctions. Assad rejected the idea of a safe zone in a television interview this week.

Russia and China have long made clear they will not go along with a repeat of last year's experience in Libya, when the U.S. and its European allies used a resolution to protect civilians to launch months of attacks that ended with the collapse of Moammar Gadhafi's regime.

Even if some legal way could be found to get around the Security Council obstacle, there is no sign the U.S. or its major European partners have the stomach to repeat the Libya operation at a time when cash-strapped governments are trying to extricate from Afghanistan and the U.S. is focused on an election in about two months.

Establishing a safe zone in Syria amounts to entering the territory of a sovereign country to offer protection to civilians, many who are sympathetic to the rebels.

Without a guarantee from Assad that he would not attack the zone, foreign governments would have to assume responsibility for protecting civilians there - through troops on the ground and through preventing Syrian attack aircraft from flying over the territory.

Meanwhile, the West is running out of options besides trying to do more to care for the tens of thousands of refugees.

With Syrian diplomacy all but dead, the Obama administration is focusing on political transition and helping the rebels defeat the Syrian regime. Washington has increased its humanitarian aid to $74 million and its "nonlethal" communications assistance to $25 million.

The administration also has eased restrictions for rebel fundraising in the United States. Most of the weapons used by the rebels are believed to be purchased inside and outside Syria with money from supporters abroad, mostly in the Gulf states.

The U.S. has been working politically with Syrian exiles who drew up a transition plan for governing the country if the Assad regime collapses. The plan was unveiled this week in Berlin.

France has promised to recognize a Syrian provisional government if the opposition can set aside its internal differences - which it has been unable to accomplish.

None of those proposals would have an immediate effect in curbing the bloodshed.

Faced with bleak prospects, the new U.N. envoy, Brahimi, says he plans to consult key players in New York after officially assuming his duties Saturday. His predecessor, Kofi Annan, quit in frustration this month after achieving little.

Brahimi, a former Algerian foreign minister and veteran U.N. mediator, will likely explore possibilities of reviving a transitional plan drawn up by Annan and agreed to by both the United States and Russia after a conference in Geneva in June.

The document aimed at establishing an interim government of people chosen by both the Assad regime and the opposition. Each would be able to veto candidates.

The arrangement was rejected immediately by many in the Syrian opposition.

Robert H. Reid is Associated Press bureau chief in Berlin and has covered Middle East events since 1978[/quote]


And why the safe havens are so neccessary for the Syrian opposition....
http://www.firstpost.com/world/assads-f ... 38873.html

Assad’s foes need safe haven in Syria: Kodmani
Aug 31, 2012

Xcpt:
“Such a provisional government needs to be based inside Syria in the liberated areas,” she told Reuters in an interview.

“That requires a safe area where it can be based. For the moment the dangers are too high for such a government to operate from inside Syria,” Kodmani said, adding that with foreign protection, the authority could be set up within three months.

Western powers are reluctant, however, to supply weapons to Syrian rebels or to send warplanes to protect safe havens without a UN Security Council mandate, which cannot be obtained because China and Russia oppose any intervention.

Kodmani, who had headed the Istanbul-based SNC’s foreign affairs bureau, was speaking as French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius laid out French plans to channel aid to rebel-held areas in northern and southern Syria.

Kodmani blamed lack of Western support for the problems besetting the fractured SNC. “The council was victim of an international response that was simply not there.”

She contrasted the West’s response to the Syria crisis with its action on Libya last year, when a transitional council swiftly gained world recognition and NATO enforced a no-fly zone with a U.N. mandate and bombed Muammar Gaddafi’s forces.

A U.N. Security Council meeting on Thursday on aid for Syria highlighted the group’s paralysis in the 17-month conflict, although Britain, France and Turkey said military action to secure civilian safe zones was still an option.

Kodmani, a Paris-based academic, said protecting such zones was vital to show regions that have suffered huge loss of life and made gains against Assad’s army that the West supports them.

“The protection of these areas is now a compelling responsibility for the international community, whether (they are) protected directly by a no-fly zone, or the Free Syrian Army is provided with the means to ensure the regime cannot fly over these cities and bomb them with total impunity,” she said.

Philip
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Philip » 01 Sep 2012 05:16

Strong support fro the regime in the Golan heights.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/au ... ssad-syria

Golan Heights divided by support for Assad's Syria

In the Israeli-occupied area, where most people call themselves Syrian, Bashar al-Assad opponents say they are being intimidated
Harriet Sherwood

"The media is exploiting and exaggerating [events]," says Ammad Maree, 33, who was born in Damascus but grew up in Majdal Shams. The Syrian army, he says, is "defending the citizens and the legitimacy of the government".

Maree‚ who named his three-year-old daughter Damascus, runs a website, baladee.net, which "is now directed to support the regime". He adds: "I feel so hurt about what is happening [in Syria]. There is no way of expressing my feeling. But I have full trust in the Syrian leadership." Confronted with witness reports of shelling of civilians, he says: "I condemn killing, but in war a lot of horrendous things happen. You have to ask why are they doing that? There must be a reason."

Like others, he blames "outsiders", including the west, for stirring up trouble and unrest in Syria. In a home bedecked with pro-Assad paraphernalia, a 78-year-old apple grower, Salman al-Maqet, points the finger at "conspirators" and "terrorists".

"Before the current events, it was heaven [in Syria]," he says, after a morning's work in his orchards. "The ones doing the killing are terrorists – foreigners and Arabs from outside the country. The main conspirators are the west and Israel, and some of our neighbours" – such as Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Maqet is informed about what's going on by Syrian state television. "I only watch the homeland station. I only trust this station. Everything is under the control of the army and we are in good hands. There will be an end to this terrorism in Syria, even if it takes time," he says.

The west, he says, must stop financing and arming "the terrorists" and end sanctions against the regime. His son, Busher, who served 25 years in an Israeli prison for resisting the occupation, similarly blames a western conspiracy to serve the interests of Israel in the Middle East. "The only things the west cares about are oil and Israel," he says.

Abu Jabal says the tension between pro- and anti-Assad supporters in Majdal Shams also has a generational dimension. "The older, religious people are losing control. There has been huge change and they say young people have gone too far. If you want to live here, they say, you live according to our rules.

"The problem is not only that we are two groups, it's that they don't acknowledge my right to have different opinions. It's hard for them to accept me as a young, outspoken, educated woman."

For now, most of the anti-Assad activists have retreated from the streets to Facebook and other internet forums. But, according to some, there is also clandestine activity: groups helping to smuggle supplies of food and medicines by circuitous routes into Syria.

"We were optimistic at the beginning," says Abu Jabal. But, she adds, the price of opposition is high in a small, close-knit community. "It's a lot of pressure to handle. It's a war in this place."

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby pentaiah » 01 Sep 2012 05:37

Confirms what I have been saying Ivan is spent force, has been super power.

Amke way to era of China

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby devesh » 02 Sep 2012 08:58

http://gulfnews.com/opinions/columnists ... -1.1068793

Crucial change in Iran’s stance on Syria

A crucial shift is taking place in the Middle East towards the conflict in Syria. Egyptian President Mohammad Mursi’s call for Arab-Iranian-Turkish dialogue over the crisis and a safe transfer of power in Syria has been well received in Turkey and Iran. All these countries have a powerful interest in making such a dialogue work, which makes the chances of success far greater.

The context is clear enough. The Syrian rebels have made major gains. The revolution moved to a new phase after the July 18 attack in Damascus, which took the lives of several top security officials, a huge morale boost to the Free Syrian Army (FSA). It has since tried to secure a number of Syrian border crossings with Turkey and Iraq, and its fighters also established a military presence in Damascus and Aleppo, two cities which had been under the absolute control of the regime.

As for the regime, it has witnessed a collapse of morale, represented by a raft of major defections — the most important being that of the former prime minister and a number of military and security leaders. This has created considerable alarm within the Bashar Al Assad regime, provoking savage responses, as demonstrated by the unprecedented use of air power to bomb population centres. The outcome has been a startling rise in casualties and an unprecedented flow of refugees to neighbouring countries. Al Assad’s interview this week asking for more time to defeat the rebels suggests the bloodshed will get even worse.

Iran recognises now that it is just a matter of time before the Al Assad regime falls, and its realisation that unlimited support for him will be a disaster has led Tehran to search for an exit from this Syrian quagmire.



Is Assad finally on the irreversible path to exile or worse?

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby devesh » 02 Sep 2012 09:03

http://news.iafrica.com/worldnews/814329.html

Assad won't stop first - Russia

Russia said Saturday it would be "naive" for outside powers to expect Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to withdraw his troops first from cities and then wait for the opposition to follow suit.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said such a demand on the regime amounted to a call for "capitulation" that Western and Arab nations had no right to make.

"When our partners say that the government must stop first and withdraw all its soldiers and weapons from cities - and only then call on the opposition to do the same - well, this is a completely unworkable scheme," said Lavrov.

"Either people are naive or it is some sort of provocation," he noted in answering questions from students at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations.

Lavrov stressed that Russia was not trying to support Assad or his government but basing its policies on the daily situation on the ground.

"No matter your view of the Syrian regime, it is completely unrealistic in the current situation - when there is fighting in the cities - to say that the only way out is the unilateral capitulation of one of the opposing sides," said Lavrov.

"We are not holding on to any regime or any individuals in the Syrian situation," he added. "We are simply basing our position on what is realistic."

Russia continues to lobby for a short-lived agreement struck by world powers in Geneva on June 30 that called for a rapid ceasefire and supported a move toward a transition government that could decide the future of Assad.

But it made no call on the Syrian strongman to quit or explicitly deny him a role in the country's future. The armed opposition denounced the agreement and fighting has since escalated.

Lavrov admitted that Russia and the other international players had "serious differences" over the conflict. Moscow has vetoed three UN Security Council resolutions threatening sanctions against Assad.

"Our Western colleagues and representatives of some regional governments are almost openly backing foreign intervention," Lavrov argued.

Russia has been adamantly opposed to any use of outside force for ending the bloodshed after giving de facto approval to a no fly zone over Libya last year that NATO used to launch air strikes against government troops.

Moscow accused the West of abusing its powers in Libya and has since vowed not to make the same mistake by sanctioning documents that could lead to action against its last remaining Soviet-era ally in the Middle East.

Lavrov said nations pressing on Assad to be the first to call an end to fighting that activists say has claimed 23 000 lives must claim responsibility for an even heavier death toll which would follow once the rebels seek to take control.

"The position of those demanding a unilateral capitulation from government forces are simultaneously encouraging armed opposition units to continue their fight - this position assumes that they are ready to pay the additional price of many, many lives lost," Russia's top diplomat said.

Philip
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby Philip » 02 Sep 2012 09:05

Th answer to that Q is what will happen to the millions of pro-regime supporters and especially those in uniform bitterly opposed to the so-called "rebels",puppets for the West-Turko-Saudi axis? If they feel that they will be massacred as seen in the other recent Arab revolutions,they will fight to the bitter end and the most likely consequence is that Syria will be somehow partitioned,as Assad and his forces cannot control the entire country,are too stretched and their principal backers,Russia and China,even in their unflinching support for Assad ,also want the conflict to end and not stagger on for years and years as it has happened in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby brihaspati » 02 Sep 2012 09:50

devesh ji,
look at the source of that news. Its "gulfnews" and a "columnist".

Friends : please do consider what I had suggested quite sometime before about Syria/Iran based on completely public domain sources,

(1) Rebels are not as swiftly winning "victory" as made out by gulf propaganda
(2) proposals for a virtual partition being considered
(3) Kurdistan getting closer to formation
(4) Germany may play a double-face role and not necessarily what is made out on the basis of so-called intel ops against Assad
(5) things may have a spinoff that goes against the gulf powers.

I didnt need any special sources for this, and if you analyze the info publicly available - you will get it too.

Just keep in mind that Bahrain demos are increasing again, and they seem to be happening now without the earlier retreats in face of state repression. Of course we cannot have any insider reports about that here from gulf inner ears. When sources such as those based on the media, discriminate between or suppress selectively - info - we have to understand the nature of such sources and their political purpose.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby ramana » 02 Sep 2012 11:04

So while Assad sees himself as a modern Arab nationalist, the Sunni Arabs {KSA and the midgets} see him as a Shia/Alawite leader of Syria. And Waste supports them!

devesh
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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby devesh » 02 Sep 2012 19:35

brihaspati ji,

thank you. indeed, will keep in mind. and yes, I have seen several reports of the FSA failing to advance, and in some cases facing debilitating setbacks, in the media. yet, the "sources" seem especially quiet, and consequently the mouths of the "sources" also quite quiet.

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Re: West Asia News and Discussions

Postby devesh » 02 Sep 2012 19:39

http://rt.com/news/bahrain-march-protes ... rajab-148/

Thousands swamp Bahrain highway in first legal 'Freedom and Democracy' demo in weeks


Tens of thousands of pro-democracy protesters flooded a major highway in Bahrain for the first sanctioned opposition rally in months. They called on the government to release a prominent human rights activist and demanded greater freedom.

The motorway, which links capital city Manama with Shiite villages, was swarming with demonstrators, the crowd extending for at least two miles (three kilometers). Protesters chanted pro-democracy slogans, waved Bahraini flags and called on the government to free Nabeel Rajab, a prominent human rights activist recently sentenced to three years in prison for supposedly organizing illegal protests.

“We do not forget the prisoners!” was one of the chants.

The mass rally was the first legal protest in over a month. In July, the government imposed a temporary ban on protests, with the interior ministry stating that the curfew was necessary to “restore order.”

It was in that period that Nabeel Rajab was sentenced to three years in prison for participating in an “illegal assembly” and “calling for a march without prior notification.”

In June, Rajab had received a three-month prison sentence for a tweet that prosecutors say offended the residents of a Sunni-dominated neighborhood of the capital. In the tweet, Rajab alleged that the residents of the neighborhood only supported Prime Minister Sheikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa because of financial incentives.

A judge later overturned the Twitter sentence, but Rajab must still serve his other, lengthier prison term for allegedly holding an illegal march.

Pro-democracy protests in the country have been ongoing since February 2011.

Colin Cavell, a former lecturer at the University of Bahrain, believes the nation's people are resolute in their demands for democracy.
“They’re tired of a single family running the entire country with kangaroo courts, with no justice at all and with disparity among the population,” he told RT.

He also noted that while the US has traditionally propped up autocratic rulers and despotic monarchies to further its regional interests, a new strategy may soon be required.

The United States wants to retain its hegemonic control not only over Bahrain, but over the entire Persian Gulf monarchs in the entire Middle East in order to keep that crude oil flowing,” he remarked. “However, they realize with the increasing democratic opposition in all of these countries, that they can no longer lean on these autocratic rulers to retain their control.”



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