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Home country: Canada
Member since: Sat Jul 9, 2005, 11:46 PM
Number of posts: 16,083
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By Jérôme Roos
Source: teleSUR English
November 17, 2015
The truth is that the narratives and objectives of Europe’s xenophobic right and the religious extremists of ISIS feed on one another in a vicious cycle.
Every time there is a terror attack, there is an uptick in support for the anti-immigrant right; and wherever Europe’s xenophobes feel emboldened to attack or rail against Muslims, the jihadists present it as yet another justification and recruiting tool for their holy war against the infidels and crusaders.
The only thing that can break this vicious cycle is to step out of it: by refusing to give in to the fear, the binary narratives, the calls to close borders, to further abrogate civil liberties and militarize society.
Solidarity remains our single greatest weapon against terror. As the Arab Spring activist Iyad El-Baghdadi – who actively follows the chatter among hundreds of jihadist and Islamist accounts on Twitter – has noted, “Nothing pissed off Islamist extremists” more than “watching very humane, moral response to the refugee crisis.”
Full article: https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/dont-make-refugees-pay-for-terror-they-flee/
Posted by polly7 | Wed Nov 18, 2015, 02:03 PM (0 replies)
By Iona Craig
Source: The Intercept
November 18, 2015
Yemen’s time-honored homes are part of the country’s rich social fabric, embodying the culture of the families who have lived in them for centuries. The Middle East’s poorest nation is famous for constructing the world’s first skyscrapers, often up to 100 feet high, with as many as 11 stories designed to keep extended families and their livestock safely under one roof.
The violent assault on the country’s history over the past seven months began in March after a political power struggle between incumbent president Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi and Houthi rebels backed by soldiers loyal to the former president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, descended into civil war.
At least 5,604 people, including 2,577 civilians, have died since the conflict began in March, according to a United Nations tally of figures from local health facilities. That number is probably an undercount of the real figure, because many of the dead or injured never reach medical treatment centers and bodies are often buried unrecorded.
Ibrahim al-Sabra, 23, and his relatives were one of more than 100 families who fled their homes to escape an apparently deliberate tactic of forced displacement of civilians that could amount to a war crime under Article 53 of the Fourth Geneva Convention. The bombardment that destroyed his home started just after 3 a.m. and killed two of al-Sabra’s cousins.
As of October 15, according to the U.N., up to 82,300 people have been internally displaced in Saada, and 2.3 million in all of Yemen. It is not clear how many are permanently homeless due to forced displacement, in contravention of international laws of war, by apparent deliberate bombing of houses.
One of the great religious centers of ancient Arabia, Sirwah, just 75 miles east of Sanaa, was damaged earlier in the conflict, and is under renewed threat from waves of intensive airstrikes carried out since Saudi-coalition troops pushed into the district in early October. While deliberate demolition by ISIS of ancient artifacts and historic sites in Iraq and Syria has been widely reported and denounced, the reaction to the Saudi-led coalition laying waste to Yemen’s cultural history, in what some archaeologists say is a pattern of systematic targeting of the country’s heritage, is comparatively subdued
Yemen, invisible to the world right now, it seems, is being destroyed. SA has used cluster bombs that will devastate the lives of small children for decades. Purposeful destruction of its historical buildings and artifacts are a means to destroy the moral of a whole population with immense pride in its historical monuments. Purposeful targeting of civilians - as per the article - "people they hate" - should be a war crime. But as an 'ally', SA has full license to decimate an entire nation. It's sick.
Posted by polly7 | Wed Nov 18, 2015, 01:46 PM (2 replies)
By Arundhati Roy and John Cusack
Source: Outlook India
November 18, 2015
AR: Just since 9/11…we’re supposed to forget whatever happened in the past because 9/11 is where history begins. Okay, since 2001, how many wars have been started, how many countries have been destroyed? So now ISIS is the new evil—but how did that evil begin? Is it more evil to do what ISIS is doing, which is to go around massacring people—mainly, but not only, Shi’a—slitting throats? By the way, the US-backed militias are doing similar things, except they don’t show beheadings of white folks on TV. Or is it more evil to contaminate the water supply, to bomb a place with depleted uranium, to cut off the supply of medicines, to say that half a million children dying from economic sanctions is a “hard price”, but “worth it”?
JC: Madeleine Albright said so—about Iraq.
AR: Yes. Iraq. Is it alright to force a country to disarm, and then bomb it? To continue to create mayhem in the area? To pretend that you are fighting radical Islamism, when you’re actually toppling all the regimes that are not radical Islamist regimes? Whatever else their faults may be, they were not radical Islamist states—Iraq was not, Syria is not, Libya was not. The most radical fundamentalist Islamist state is, of course, your ally Saudi Arabia. In Syria, you’re on the side of those who want to depose Assad, right? And then suddenly, you’re with Assad, wanting to fight ISIS. It’s like some crazed, bewildered, rich giant bumbling around in a poor area with his pockets stuffed with money, and lots of weapons—just throwing stuff around. You don’t even really know who you’re giving it to—which murderous faction you are arming against which—feeling very relevant when actually…. All this destruction that has come in the wake of 9/11, all the countries that have been bombed…it ignites and magnifies these ancient antagonisms. They don’t necessarily have to do with the United States; they pre-date the existence of the United States by centuries. But the United States is unable to understand how irrelevant it is, actually. And how wicked…. Your short-term gains are the rest of the world’s long-term disasters—for everybody, including yourselves. And, I’m sorry, I’ve been saying you and the United States or America, when I actually mean the US government. There’s a difference. Big one.
AR: Conflating the two the way I just did is stupid…walking into a trap—it makes it easy for people to say, “Oh, she’s anti-American, he’s anti-American”, when we’re not. Of course not. There are things I love about America. Anyway, what is a country? When people say, “Tell me about India”, I say, “Which India?…. The land of poetry and mad rebellion? The one that produces haunting music and exquisite textiles? The one that invented the caste system and celebrates the genocide of Muslims and Sikhs and the lynching of Dalits? The country of dollar billionaires? Or the one in which 800 million live on less than half-a-dollar a day? Which India?” When people say “America”, which one? Bob Dylan’s or Barack Obama’s? New Orleans or New York? Just a few years ago India, Pakistan and Bangladesh were one country. Actually, we were many countries if you count the princely states…. Then the British drew a line, and now we’re three countries, two of them pointing nukes at each other—the radical Hindu bomb and the radical Muslim bomb.
Full article: https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/980365/
Posted by polly7 | Wed Nov 18, 2015, 01:33 PM (21 replies)
16 November 2015
Following the ISIS outrages in Beirut and Paris, John Pilger updates this prescient essay on the root causes of terrorism and what we can do about it.
As a witness to the human consequences of aerial savagery - including the beheading of victims, their parts festooning trees and fields - I am not surprised by the disregard of memory and history, yet again. A telling example is the rise to power of Pol Pot and his Khmer Rouge, who had much in common with today's Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). They, too, were ruthless medievalists who began as a small sect. They, too, were the product of an American-made apocalypse, this time in Asia.
According to Pol Pot, his movement had consisted of "fewer than 5,000 poorly armed guerrillas uncertain about their strategy, tactics, loyalty and leaders". Once Nixon's and Kissinger's B-52 bombers had gone to work as part of "Operation Menu", the west's ultimate demon could not believe his luck. The Americans dropped the equivalent of five Hiroshimas on rural Cambodia during 1969-73. They leveled village after village, returning to bomb the rubble and corpses. The craters left giant necklaces of carnage, still visible from the air. The terror was unimaginable. A former Khmer Rouge official described how the survivors "froze up and they would wander around mute for three or four days. Terrified and half-crazy, the people were ready to believe what they were told... That was what made it so easy for the Khmer Rouge to win the people over." A Finnish Government Commission of Inquiry estimated that 600,000 Cambodians died in the ensuing civil war and described the bombing as the "first stage in a decade of genocide". What Nixon and Kissinger began, Pol Pot, their beneficiary, completed. Under their bombs, the Khmer Rouge grew to a formidable army of 200,000.
ISIS has a similar past and present. By most scholarly measure, Bush and Blair's invasion of Iraq in 2003 led to the deaths of at least 700,000 people - in a country that had no history of jihadism. The Kurds had done territorial and political deals; Sunni and Shia had class and sectarian differences, but they were at peace; intermarriage was common. Three years before the invasion, I drove the length of Iraq without fear. On the way I met people proud, above all, to be Iraqis, the heirs of a civilization that seemed, for them, a presence.
Bush and Blair blew all this to bits. Iraq is now a nest of jihadism. Al-Qaeda - like Pol Pot's "jihadists" - seized the opportunity provided by the onslaught of 'Shock and Awe' and the civil war that followed. "Rebel" Syria offered even greater rewards, with CIA and Gulf state ratlines of weapons, logistics and money running through Turkey. The arrival of foreign recruits was inevitable. A former British ambassador, Oliver Miles, wrote, "The government seems to be following the example of Tony Blair, who ignored consistent advice from the Foreign Office, MI5 and MI6 that our Middle East policy - and in particular our Middle East
The only effective opponents of ISIS are accredited demons of the west - Syria, Iran, Hezbollah and now Russia. The obstacle is Turkey, an "ally" and a member of Nato, which has conspired with the CIA, MI6 and the Gulf medievalists to channel support to the Syrian "rebels", including those now calling themselves ISIS. Supporting Turkey in its long-held ambition for regional dominance by overthrowing the Assad government beckons a major conventional war and the horrific dismemberment of the most ethnically diverse state in the Middle East.
More than 40 years ago, the Nixon-Kissinger bombing of Cambodia unleashed a torrent of suffering from which that country has never recovered. The same is true of the Blair-Bush crime in Iraq, and the Nato and "coalition" crimes in Libya and Syria. With impeccable timing, Henry Kissinger's latest self-serving tome has been released with its satirical title, "World Order". In one fawning review, Kissinger is described as a "key shaper of a world order that remained stable for a quarter of a century". Tell that to the people of Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Chile, East Timor and all the other victims of his "statecraft". Only when "we" recognise the war criminals in our midst and stop denying ourselves the truth will the blood begin to dry.
Full article: http://johnpilger.com/articles/from-pol-pot-to-isis-the-blood-never-dried
Posted by polly7 | Wed Nov 18, 2015, 01:25 PM (6 replies)
by Andre Vltchek / November 16th, 2015
This “culture” had already mercilessly slaughtered several hundreds of millions of people in all corners of the world; it enslaved entire continents, and plundered all that had any value, whether it was located above or under the surface of earth.
Inhabitants of Europe, the United States, as well as rulers of the client states, showed chilling indifference towards the suffering of their victims.
They also demonstrated utmost ignorance and the highest level of indoctrination!
For centuries, citizens of France, United Kingdom, Belgium, Spain, Portugal and other Western nations were staring at the battle ships leaving their shores, sailing towards Asia, Latin America and Africa … Mouths open wide; they were pretending that they did not really know what horrors these ships were going to spread. When the ships returned, packed with slaves and unimaginable booty, they shut down their brains, claimed ignorance once again, attributing thriving of their cities and states to some “Western ingenuity, enterprising spirit and hard work,” but definitely not to terror, rape and appalling plunder of the world.
What Germans did, gazing at the chimneys of the concentration camps that were regurgitating thick smoke of the victims of Holocaust and then claiming that “they did not know”, was exactly what all Europeans did for centuries and millennia, when their troops and “investments” into all sorts of Crusades, were looting and brutalizing everyone on the surface of our Planet.
Throughout the history, holocausts have been performed, again and again, all over Africa, in the Middle East, in Latin America, Caribbean, sub-Continent, and Asia Pacific, even in Oceania.
Full article: http://dissidentvoice.org/2015/11/ignorance-and-indoctrination-of-westerners-kills-millions/#more-60510
So, we fucked up the world (yes, we really did), now, what do we do about it?
Posted by polly7 | Wed Nov 18, 2015, 01:10 PM (2 replies)
by Harvey Lothian / November 18th, 2015
A few years ago I was walking with my dog on one of the many forest trails in this area, when we crossed paths with a man I knew only by sight. He was a distant neighbor. Since we were going in the same direction we fell into step and engaged in small talk about the weather and recent news events. When it became obvious we had somewhat similar views about the world I said I was upset that reliable sources estimate 32,000 children die every day in the world, from hunger and hunger-related diseases when there is enough food to feed them. He replied, “Oh, I don’t want to think about that, it upsets me too much.” I did not know what to say, so I said nothing. About that time our paths diverged, he went one way; I went another, on my way home. The man’s words disturbed me, but I did not know why. By the time I got home, 15 minutes later, I knew why.
The Western World has an insatiable appetite for resources, income and wealth. We are sucking all three from the Lesser Developed World where most of the 32,000 children die every day. Thirty-two thousand children a day for one year is 11.68 million children a year. That is more dead children than the combatant and non-combatant deaths per year during the Second World War. We are now waging war on the children of the world. Our political and economic leaders in the Western World value their positions of power and their wealth more than they value the lives of innocent, defenseless children. To value political power and wealth more than the lives of innocent children are unmistakable signs of psychopathy. Our leaders are psychopaths. We elect psychopathic political leaders and tolerate psychopathic economic leaders.
Had I had a quicker mind and been more forthright and insensitive to my neighbor’s feelings, I would have said something like this to him:
If you don’t want to think about starving children now, when will you be willing to think about them? Will you wait until they are white children starving to death, or will you wait until they are Canadian children, or B.C. children, or Powell River children, or your neighbor’s children? Or, will you wait until they are your own children and grandchildren? If you do not begin thinking about hungry children soon, make no mistake about it, our leaders will eventually steal food from the mouths of your family’s children because they are psychopaths who care nothing about children, probably not even their own. Make no mistake about it, these people are psychopaths, their greed is insatiable, they want EVERYTHING. When your children have died from hunger they will start taking the food from your mouth. They will tell you it is for your own good, or nothing can be done to prevent your hunger, or that it is your fault that you are hungry and dying. They will tell you this when there is enough food to feed everyone.
He's right, although I don't think the leaders of countries are actually in control .... they mostly serve the multinational billionaire corporations who see the poorest of the poor as expendable.
Posted by polly7 | Wed Nov 18, 2015, 01:02 PM (0 replies)
Don't laugh. I will know who you are.
I bought this 110 y/o house from the town ....... it had 4 feet of water sitting in the basement for a year - they hadn't checked it at all. The veranda was ready to fall in, the pipes inside are burst, the wiring is knob and tube, four to six layers of wallpaper (some layers painted) throughout. But ....... all hardwood floors except the second floor, original woodwork, stained-glass windows and sitting on four lots. It was a hoarder's house - it took me almost 20 loads on a small flatbed to clean it out. The poor man who owned it went for a holiday back to his family in Seattle and died. I finally am getting the veranda roof back on after sistering in a whole bunch of two by fours and leveling and straightening the whole structure from underneath. I had ripped it off long ago but had a broken ankle and hand and was taking more transfers after they healed, and some calls during vacation and illness, and helping my friend with her bar. I've scouted out and bought used windows to go around the whole thing - the restaurant is just across the street - there's a great old huge planked shed in back my brother and I straightened out which will be the party spot in the summer. There is a really good two-car garage just to the east of the house and a large deck in the back. Just hard to get back at it and a bit discouraging ...
But .... this time next year I'm going to post a finished picture! (I hope).
Please don't mind the strange person up top trying to sit on air between the rafters.
So far I've had many suggestions - a bordello, a little hotel or rent out rooms (which is what I was thinking) and a bar - but my best friend already has a bar in town so it's between the bordello, or rooms! Methinks it'll be rooms and they'll have the run out of the house.
I have so much work to do. But I enjoy it. My Dad and I built my barn on the farm, I've built furniture, fences ... all sorts of things, but this is a very, very big challenge. If anyone wants to come up for a 'holiday'???
Posted by polly7 | Wed Nov 18, 2015, 10:06 AM (26 replies)
These images of Veerender Jubbal show a selfie photoshopped to make him look like a terrorist beside his original selfie
Published Monday, November 16, 2015 1:22PM EST
Last Updated Monday, November 16, 2015 9:33PM EST
.........The altered image appears to show a man wearing a vest of explosives and holding up a Qur’an.
But Veerender Jubbal says the photo is a fake.
According to Jubbal, someone stole one of his selfies, and photoshopped the image to make him look like one of the Paris attackers.
The original photo, which has also been shared on social media, shows him without a vest and holding up an iPad.
"This despicable action was then quickly made worse when some international news outlets decided to share the image as truth."
Jubbal tweeted Saturday that he has never travelled to Paris, and is a Sikh man who wears a turban and lives in Canada.
I saw the 'ISIS' photo, but I can't remember where.
Edit: From his Twitter feed:
Veerender Jubbal @Veeren_Jubbal
"The Sikh community has faced significant violence and discrimination following major terrorist attacks because of religious appearance – we must be better than this," he said.
After Jubbal and his followers shared the real photo online, Spanish newspaper "La Razon" apologized for publishing the fake image on its front page.
Jubbal has asked other media outlets that used the image to retract the photo and apologize.
"When we paint entire faiths and communities with the same brushstrokes, we further give terrorist exactly what they want," he said.
"We're strongest in the face of terror and bigotry when we stand together."
Posted by polly7 | Tue Nov 17, 2015, 08:11 AM (8 replies)
November 16, 2015 by True Activist
By Justin King
(ANTIMEDIA) Propaganda is the wheel by which the government steers the bus of a nation; typically driving it into war or off the cliff of humanity. It is amazing to see how many people who are otherwise rational human beings will blindly follow the herd on the matter of how subhuman a perceived national enemy is.
The western media wonderfully paints Islam as a death cult bent on world domination. Over and over again the American populace is shown footage of the atrocities committed by fanatics or of Arab men burning American flags. The problem, of course, is that this isn’t remotely representative of the Islamic population of the world. Are there Muslims who employ terrorism? Of course. Are there Christians who employ terrorism? Of course. There are even Buddhists who employ terrorism.
Some general facts about Islam might help break the noose of wartime propaganda that rests around America’s neck. Below are a list of statements this journalist has seen in the last week on social media, followed by the data to put that statement in perspective.
“All Muslims are terrorists.”
There are 1.6 billion Muslims in the world. The much-discussed ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) organization, which has been described as the “richest terrorist group in the world” can only field between 7,000 and 15,000 troops in its battle to create a fundamentalist homeland. Even taking the highest estimate of their troop strength means that fewer than 1 out of every 106,000 Muslims from all over the world are actually willing to take up arms and fight for the fundamentalist dream. The Iraqi army, however, can field 250,000 soldiers to fight against that fundamentalist vision. That figure does not include irregular forces allied to the Iraqi army. The premise that all Muslims are terrorists falls flat by a mere study of the numbers. It isn’t a majority of Muslims. It isn’t even 1% of Muslims.
“They are stuck in the Stone Age, and they want to stay there.”
This statement marginalizes the thousands of Muslim men and women who sit in prison for attempting to change their government and those that died in the attempt. Political prisoners throughout the Arab world sit rotting away for attempting to bring about change in their nations. They are Muslims. Four Saudi Princesses are currently being starved to death by the King for speaking out in favor of women’s rights. Countless journalists and bloggers sit behind bars for questioning their governments. The US government continually props up these brutal dictatorships with multi-million dollar arms deals and keeps the power in the hands of those that don’t want change.
(I am not excusing in any way the horrors committed by ISIS and other radical terrorist group.
And it's strange that Saudi Arabia, our good ally, is so brutal to its own citizens for trying to advance human rights, while Iraq pre-invasion had women who had far more rights than anyone in the region.)
Posted by polly7 | Mon Nov 16, 2015, 01:56 PM (6 replies)
November 16, 2015 by Amanda Froelich
Susan Carland is is turning the hostility of Internet trolls into a "force for good" - one hate-filled tweet at a time.
The anonymity of the internet has given too many cowards false bravado. Shielded by a computer screen and miles of distance, it’s easy for individuals to nitpick and spout anger at others they do not understand or may be jealous of.
This, of course, is a form of cyber-bullying, one of the unfortunate side effects of the technological age.
When assaulted by hateful comments, one can either get mad, ignore the statement, or respond in a kind manner (which ends up getting exhausting). OR, they can do what an inspirational Muslim woman is doing, and turn the hostility of Internet trolls into a “force for good” – one hate-filled tweet at a time.
As HuffPost reports, Dr. Susan Carland is an Australian academic and well-known figure in the country’s Muslim community. An unapologetic Muslim woman, says she has become all too accustomed to the “stream of toxicity” that deluges her Twitter feed on a daily basis
Full article: http://www.trueactivist.com/inspiring-muslim-woman-donates-1-for-every-hate-tweet-she-receives/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TrueActivist+%28True+Activist%29
Posted by polly7 | Mon Nov 16, 2015, 01:39 PM (0 replies)