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Saturday, August 27, 2016

Turkish incursion inside Syria: A terribly sinister development

 Image and inset video from Reuters.  Turkish army tanks entering Syrian border town Jarablus.

Turkish tanks today entered Syrian territory, starting operations against Kurds and blatantly violating the sovereignty of Syria. Turkish jets and special forces backed by U.S. also left Adana to launch an offensive in Syria. It comes three or four days after the bombing in Gaziantep by Daesh. Tayyip Erdogan is using the Gaziantep incident with a twist against Syria. Shortly prior to the Turkish offensive, he referred to it as "attacks from Syria against our country, Gaziantep, Kilis, brought this to a point .." He states "attacks from Syria," not attacks from ISIL even though Turkish authorities confirmed it was ISIL. The official report that Turkish incursion in Syria is against ISIL is a big hoax. It's meant to target the Syrian Kurdish party - Democratic Union Party or PYD - whom Erdogan sees as "terrorists." PYD is focused on fighting ISIL and Erdogan isn't comfortable with that either.

Recently U.S. was allied with PYD against ISIL during the fight and recapture of Manbij. However, senior U.S. officials have made it clear that Turkey has the backing of the United States in the illegal incursion into Syria, that U.S. / PYD partnership against ISIL has ended and now the Kurds must take orders from the Turks.   U.S. strategy against ISIL in Syria and Iraq is carefully balanced. Its purpose is to periodically weaken ISIL just a bit so that the terror group stays within limits of U.S. control.  Neither the U.S. nor Turkey intend to eradicate ISIL completely.

Pepe Escobar addresses the recent Ankara/ Tehran/ Moscow coalition as "ATM" in one of his latest interesting pieces posted at RT.  But I think there's still more to the real story than meets the eye. The United States was seemingly only mildly displeased with the recent failed coup in Turkey. That broke Tayyip's chicken-heart and he felt somewhat betrayed, pushing him closer to the Russian front. With Iran already there, it automatically rolled up the three of them into a coalition of strange bedfellows. However, the scenario cannot be taken at face value. Erdogan is furtively complicated and so is Vladimir Putin. Iran needs to be smart enough to assess the long-term futility of "ATM" coalition. It has neither placed Ankara nor Moscow on a collision course with Washington. Russia has been carefully playing a balancing game between Turkey, Iran, U.S. and Israel ever since it got involved in the Syrian war. Turkey is a longtime ally of U.S. and Israel with occasional love-frown relations with the U.S.  Tayyip Erdogan has been on his feet, to and fro, perpetually searching for suitable modus operandi to dismember Syria on the pretext of a defensive war, no matter how long it takes.  Both U.S. and Israel have loved that idea. Putin hasn't been averse to it either, as long as he is assured that those proxy thugs galore will stay locked up inside the territories of Syria and Iraq and not hamper with regions in the north close to the Russian federation.

Friday, August 26, 2016

French war on burkini

Selective xenophobia, selective misogyny. 

French police and ISIL police - who's learning from whom?

Even the dumbest of the dummies are raising eyebrows at the atmosphere of tenacious pettifoggery within the French system.

With a foreign policy that's been one of the kindest to terrorists, at home the French government keeps repeating its fears of terror attacks like a broken record. The French cure for this self-created political malady is the radical secularization of the French society.

                                   Burkini swimwear:  Image source The Blaze

On August 21, 2016 the French police forced a group of Muslim women at a beach in Nice to strip off their burkinis in public.  The 'law enforcers' didn't only demand the removal of the hair-cover but the removal of the entire outfit .... in a crowded beach!!  It was an act that one would only expect from ISIL regulators of their tyranny.  Soon after, a Nice tribunal promoted discrimination to new heights also contradicting the frequently mentioned concept of French 'secularism.'  It claimed that the reason for banning the burkini was to avoid offending ""the religious convictions or non-convictions of other users of the beach.""  However, offending the religious convictions of those wearing the burkini by stripping off their clothing in public is apparently not relevant within the French legal system. The Nice tribunal has confirmed by its own admission that the French law isn't secular.  Prohibition of the burkini is to respect the "religious convictions or non-convictions" of others, expressing a mix of discrimination and zealotry, not secularism.

It isn't an uncommon approach of nations any longer to use 'secularism' as a garb for covering up profound xenophobia and extremism.  India and Israel are two other flaming examples of the same archaic mindset.

Extremes consist of two opposite corners.  If forcing a woman to cover is oppression, forcing her to uncover is oppression just as much, often with  greater humiliation.

How many of you would know the real story of burkini swimwear, that it isn't on demand only by Muslim women?  The inventor of burkini is a Lebanese-Australian lady based in Sydney, Aheda Zanetti.  She designed this modest swimsuit in 2004 for Muslim women not comfortable with the traditional skimpy bikini.  The burkini beach attire that covers the entire body is waterproof and very lightweight, making it an ideal swimming costume.  Since the last 12 years when the burkini began being marketed, there has been a 200% spike in the burkini business, a thundering entrepreneurial success!.  The most amazing irony as stated by Zanetti published at Hollywood Reporter is that bulk of the orders for burkini have been arriving from non-Muslim female beach goers anxious to cover up their skin for protection against skin cancer.  Not only them, but there is also a huge demand for burkini from women who are skin cancer survivors for whom complete protection against UV rays is imperative.   The deadly skin melanoma (skin cancer caused by the sun's ultra violet rays) is one of the top killer diseases in Europe, North America and Australia.  In the last three decades, skin cancer has more than doubled in the US alone.  That has created a lot of awareness on the importance of increased body coverage for maximum sun protection, and the burkini is seen as the perfect beach attire, giving women the opportunity to visit sunny beaches without any harmful effects on the skin.  Besides the fact that sun-screen lotions don't guarantee one hundred percent protection to skin exposed to UV rays for long hours, the inconvenience of pasting the entire body with sun-screen is impractical.  Not surprising, many Western reporters have been viewing burkini as America's "next beach fad."

But with pig-headed obstinacy getting the better of them, French authorities are incapable of reconciling with rational and civilized perspectives on decision making.  Former French President, Nikolas Sarkozy, who has already begun his presidential campaign for 2017, along with several mayors of French cities, are staunchly supporting the ban and have vowed to defy the court ruling that overturned the ban on August 26, Friday.

In Israel, Hasidic Jews have "women-only beach days" .. beaches that are gender-segregated.  Hasidic Jewish women and men going to beaches and swimming pools are fully clothed in accordance with their religious beliefs.  Hadidic Jewish women walking on the streets of Israeli cities and towns are covered from head down to their toes.  Are Hasidic Jews prohibited from entering France?  Do Hasidic Jewish women, who strictly adhere to their religious dress code, need to change to short skirts before walking on the streets of France?  Are they required to wear the Western style bikinis while visiting French beaches?

When we were growing up, we were explained the precise definition of a "secular society" in the West as one with the presence of options.  You dress as you wish, you eat what you desire and you follow the tradition of your choice .. all of which constitute your fundamental civil rights which governmental laws aren't entitled to infringe.  But after the start of the 21st century, secular Europe rapidly began displaying disturbing similarities with the infamous bigotry of medieval Europe under the fiery rule of the Church in Rome that terrorized Europe for 600 years until the late 1800s and eventually necessitated the separation of State and Church.  Today as we see it, only the cultural priorities of the two European eras differ; their mentality (including political values) is identical.  

Presently we are told by European governments of those very sources that bragged on the tolerance of European secularism until a decade and a half ago that it is mandatory for immigrants to "obey" (a discreet synonym of 'embrace') European traditions and culture.   Hopefully you will have enough common sense not to mix up the aspects of  "obedience" to a country's law and "obedience" to its traditions.   Majority of immigrants are law abiding and are very comfortable with the former, but the latter is quite another issue that viciously clashes with the much talked about Western pride of secularism.

Quoting Germany's Angela Merkel, the flag bearer for the return of medieval European bigotry, "Those who found refuge and protection with us must obey our laws, values and traditions. And in order to understand us, they must learn the German language. All this is integration. All this is the exact opposite of multiculturism. It remains true that multiculturism leads to parallel societies and multiculturism therefore remains a lie."  Focus on the selection of words.  A proponent of coercion, she is attempting to be an advocate of "integration" while plainly trashing multiculturism.  She got a standing ovation from a large German audience.  This video appeared in Globe & Mail in Facebook, December 2015. It was soon removed and won't show no more, probably because it's too racist. 

Since then, Germany has inundated itself with fake stories of mythical "rapes by refugees" in an effort to appear as "victims" to downplay Merkel's instrumental role in financing Al Qaeda terrorists for the invasion of Syria which has deprived Syria of a fifth of its population.  A country of 25 million is now only 20 million in less than 5 years.   While the same sources now talk of Syria with pleasure as one of the most dangerous countries in the world, they're conspicuously silent on the fact that until 2010 (months prior to the war), Syria was rated by Gallup as the 5th safest country in the world, also acknowledged by the U.S. State Department. 

To my utter astonishment, I read several comments in the social media addressing the niqab and hijab as "Wahabi" dresses.  So ... as the non-Muslim (takfiris) of Al Qaeda go about their deadly vandalism with Western weapons and money, the daft segments of the Western community jump to ridiculous conclusions, judging every Muslim female from what she wears, branding her with bizarre social stigmas and interfering with her basic legal rights.  Gasp, sigh or applause ?!!!   You tell me. 

Neither niqab  nor hijab have anything to do with Wahabism nor any other notions the takfiris may have ingrained into the minds of the unthinking.  The preponderance of Muslim women harassed because of their dress code are not coerced into it by their families.  They wear whatever they do by choice.  And most of them despise Wahabism much more than do the Western governments.

Some images below show very similar culture within certain Jewish segments.

                               Image source: NPR org

           Image source:  PetaPixel
         Image source:  Messianic bible  
                    Image source:  Religion news

         Image source and details: haemtza blogspot
        Female members of an orthodox Jewsih family in Canada.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Occupied Kashmir: How India lynched the referendum

If majority within a province or city opt for secession, they MUST be allowed to decide their own future.  Demonizing the ideology of secession (if decided by the majority) is a typical calculating mindset of totalitarian regimes and their firebrand bigoted sycophants.

                           Image source:  The Intuition blog by Sajad Khan

        Valley of Kashmir.  Image source  The Intuition blog

                           Ladakh, Kashmir.   Image source The Intuition blog.

In January 5,1949 UN affirmed that the accession of Jammu & Kashmir must be through a free and fair referendum (plebiscite), that only the people of this region were entitled to determine their future. But India showed its back to the UN (just as Israel does). Western political history books eager to discreetly favor India have chosen their words ultra carefully to display phony neutrality between India & Pakistan. India's rejection to respect the UN's call for referendum in January 1949 is often ridiculously referred as "differences in interpretation of the procedure for demilitarizing Azad Kashmir Army" by Pakistan & India.  Azad Kashmir forces of 1947 made up of retired WW2 veterans of the region that included disciplined platoons & battalions. They fought the first Kashmir war against the Indian army from October 1947 to December 1948.  After ceasefire in 1949, Azad Kashmir forces had the same uniforms and designated ranks as the Pakistan army and became its 12th infantry division legally based in Azad Kashmir province (the portion of Kashmir administered by Pakistan). At this time in 1949 the Azad Kashmir forces were NOT fighting the Indian army. It was a period of complete ceasefire and there's NO logical reason why the presence of Azad Kashmir forces should have been an excuse for ignoring a referendum other than India's political obstinacy to evade it. The UN never addressed this issue.

Then, three years later in 1951 ....

to distract the Kashmiri people and the world, India craftily manipulated the situation by calling for "post independence elections" (a modus operandi for maintaining the status quo via installing a puppet provincial rule) within Indian occupied Kashmir, despite knowing that this was NOT what the people of Kashmir were demanding. Consequently the UN reiterated that such an "election" was not a substitute for referendum because it did not allow the Kashmiri people to choose between Pakistan or India nor did it give them the opportunity to establish an independent Kashmiri state. But India ignored the UN (just as Israel does) and held a heavily rigged election. For the people of Kashmir this was nothing but a sick and cruel joke. 

Five years later in 1956 came the Kashmir catastrophe ..

when the Indian constituent assembly amended its state constitution self-declaring Kashmir as an "integral part of Indian union" followed by the Indian home minister's visit to occupied province of Jammu & Kashmir asserting that even the question of a referendum didn't arise A year later in 1957, UN passed a meek little resolution telling India that such a decision would not resolve the problem which of course India's despotic regime didn't even bother to entertain. Hence today, we see hardline Indian nationalists as well as those Indians who are too scared to speak in India's dictatorship (most of whom congregate in online neocon hotspots) persist to reject a referendum claiming Kashmir is "not a monolithic province and it's an integral part of India." Not to mention, at least 85% of Kashmiris are Muslims and the principle ideology of the creation of Pakistan in 1947 was that all provinces of the sub-continent that are geographically contiguous having a Muslim majority must comprise of Pakistan.

               An Indian occupying soldier in Kashmir.  Image source The Intuition blog.

 Indian occupying soldiers in Kashmir beat elderly unarmed man.  Image from The  Intuition blog.

      Injured Kashmiri girl carried by her brother.  Image source The Intuition blog

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Shahram Amiri: More likely a defector than an abductee

                                  Image source:  Global Times

He arrived in Iran in July 2010 flashing the "V" sign and got quite a warm welcome when he said he was "kidnapped" by the CIA in Saudi Arabia while performing Hajj, taken to the U.S. but resisted CIA attempts pressuring him to provide sensitive information on Iran's nuclear program. However, his story had many discrepancies and missing details that weren't adding up. ‪#‎ShahramAmiri‬ was arrested less than a year later. It was soon clear that Iranian authorities had not accepted his version of events. He was sentenced for 10 years in prison. He was also given a lawyer and went through a lengthy trial. As the story unfolded during the trial, the Supreme Court was convinced that Amiri was guilty of espionage. Having access to highly sensitive and confidential information on Iran's nuclear program, he decided to sell some precious and vital information, including the location of the country's covert headquarters for nuclear works, at a price to enemy No.1 - United States of America - a criminal offense that carries the death penalty according to Iranian law. Some reports claim the price negotiated was $5 million, though Amiri hadn't collected that amount when he returned to Iran in 2010. 

Within two years following Amiri's return - from 2010 to 2012 - four Iranian nuclear scientists were assassinated in Iran and a fifth survived a bomb attack. All incidents certainly had the involvement of US and Israeli intelligence services. It's not easy to confirm to what extent Amiri's cooperation with the CIA helped the foreign intelligentsia to target five Iranian nuclear scientists in just two years. But it's certainly very possible that during the one year of his disappearance spent in the United States, Amiri did volunteer enough state secrets including the schedule and whereabouts of Iranian nuclear scientists that helped US and Israeli operatives to target them.

The United States has flatly denied the "kidnapping" story and stated that Amiri visited and left the US entirely on his own. It's again impossible to determine how far that's correct. However, those stories about getting "kidnapped by CIA during Hajj" are no more uncommon tales coming from double-agent defectors.  If the CIA had really kidnapped Amiri, it's unlikely they would allow him to return after finding out that he was a staunch nationalist and wouldn't divulge any sensitive information.  The reasons for that are obvious.  According to the NPR, Amiri had regular ties with the CIA and wanted to get out of Iran. But other sources have reported that once in the US, Amiri was homesick and wished to return. He only wanted the deal to get through. When Amiri suddenly returned to Iran in 2010, he was seemingly convinced that the Iranians would buy his story of a CIA orchestrated kidnapping.

Iran Human Rights posted statements from Amiri's mother on the conversations she had with him when the family met him while he was in detention.  Iranian authorities didn't disclose precisely where Amiri was kept in custody, but it was apparently not a prison; similar to house arrest .. as it seemed.  In his mother's words, Amiri admitted he was kept in a "nice place" and given "good food."  But he was distraught after more than 5 years of imprisonment.  Yet strangely enough, in his conversations with his mother, he never explicitly refuted the charges of defection.  Instead, during his last meeting with his family, he expressed his despair and his desire that he wanted to be in "peace" alluding to his death sentence.  According to Iran's Human Rights report, Amiri's mother was deeply distressed as she felt her son was innocent and was also critical of the legal process.  However, it's but natural that no parents would view their children not innocent regardless of their crime, and it would very improper to criticize their feelings.  But factually there's no evidence to suggest that Amiri's trial was not carefully conducted nor was he a victim of injustice and neither was he treated in violation of the country's constitutional laws.  Unfortunately, it was more than obvious he did commit an act that greatly imperiled Iran's national security .. an act he should never than indulged in. 

Debating the existence of capital punishment is a different issue and this isn't the context for its discussion.    

It's extremely sad, nay heart rending, to learn of the execution of a young man leaving behind a young wife, a gorgeous 7-year-old son and elderly parents all of whom desperately loved their husband, father and son.  It's also tragic and mind boggling why some young men turn so dangerously and unscrupulously adventurous for the sake of money and in the process overlook the risks of emotional devastation their loved ones may have to experience. 

After all, those four nuclear scientists who lost their lives after their security was jeopardized also left behind many grieving loved ones.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Aleppo Syria - As takfiris struggle to dodge their Waterloo

The Syrian government has confirmed that it intends to retake the whole of Aleppo and continue attacking the armed foreign fighters who are occupying large swathes of the province.  Syria's resolute approach is becoming a growing obstacle for Al Qaeda affiliates and their disciples etched as "moderates."  Obama's hopes have been substantially dashed.  That lullaby his advisors sung for long to soothe his heart that the Syrian Army is too stretched and won't be able to withstand the "rebels" for much longer is just not beginning to look true.  

Bedlam Blogger mentions in "Aleppo Endgame" that foreign fighters in Syria and their Western sponsors are presently "desperate to salvage the regime-change project." Not surprising that very recently a frantic propaganda was unleashed by the voluntary Civil Defense group (aka White Helmets, the accomplished liars)  that there were "two chemical attacks" in northern Syria without a shred of evidence which prevented senior US officials to resume beating the war drums, much to their disappointment.   Agreeing with Bedlam Blogger, they are extremely wary that Assad with his Hezbollah and Iranian allies and whatever help Russia is still offering would be able to liberate most of Syria by the end of this year.  It's possible that the bloodbath initiated by foreign fighters in 2011 could be over before the Clinton regime takes over the White House after the upcoming fixed US elections, the rigging for which has already begun.  It would then be difficult for the old woman to initiate a new inquest  against Syria upholding another bout of invasion, much less a direct NATO intervention that was stymied in August 2013. 

Accordingly, there's an opinion that the Syrian government may want to move fast with its plans while Obama is still in the Oval Office.  But that may not be wholly correct.  Rather, it isn't.  From his side, Assad has made it abundantly clear that Washington may march off to Hell along with its flunkies. Visibly the Syrian strategy has been moving at its own pace squarely focused on the best interest of the country.  Assad is no political laggard and those five harrowing years since 2011 have made him still smarter.  He knows that there are no rules nor scruples within the neocons' new world.  If they're hellbent upon the preemptive destruction of a country, they will do it, even if that amounts to the resumption of another illegal war.   Assad's aspiration comes from his commitment to his country, defending its sovereignty and rejection of puppetism.  That's the real problem which has left the neocon jackholes scratching their heads for decades since the time of Hafez al-Assad.

A week ago - August 6 - An Nusra and its allies of different FSA factions inside Aleppo were desperately trying to seek help from external takfiri forces in Syria including Daesh. This ought to be an eye opener for Vladimir Putin whom Tayyip Erdogan is trying to woo with stories that "Syrian rebel groups" or "moderates" have no ties with Daesh.  Considering that, it isn't surprising that there are no reports until now of Turkey shutting its borders with Syria to block the supply of weapons and entry of terrorist fighters.  Neither has Putin been perturbed about this terrible intentional oversight of the Turkish leader which is the prime cause turning all confrontations between the Syrian Army and terror groups into yo-yo battles, slowing the progress for Damascus.  Yet the good news is that despite Ankara's low-key but continued support for terrorists, the turn of the tide looks increasingly in favor of Damascus.

Liberation - Kinsabba, Lattakia Province (Syria) July 2016

Liberation of the mountainous town of Kinsabba is a big victory for the Syrian Army. 

"Kinsabba is on the road connecting Latakia with Aleppo, which will allow the Syrian Army to plan its ground operations for the liberation of Idlib and its suburbs."  (Sputnik)

Latakia was one of the most beautiful provinces of Syria.  Needless to say, takfiri occupation has left it in ruins.  Watch the brief aerial video footage of Kinsabba town after its recent liberation.  It's a literal illustration of the expression "a ghost town."  

Brief aerial video footage of Kinsabba like a ghost town.

Hezbollah - a major anti-terror force

"Ten years after the 33-day war between Hezbollah and Israel, Lebanon’s resistance movement has turned into a major anti-terror force in the region. Experts believe the experience Hezbollah fighters have gained in the Syria war have made them a greater challenge for Israel." - Press TV (Beirut) 

 Israeli media Haaretz acknowledges "Israel military now sees Hezbollah as an Army in every sense," adding Hezbollah's "battle experience in Syria raises its game considerably."  

"Hezbollah is positioning itself as Lebanon’s first line of defense against 'takfiri' terrorists: The Lebanese army cannot succeed in its current and future plans without at least moral support from Hezbollah. It would not be possible to eliminate terrorist and takfiri groups in Syria without the party." Syyed Hassan Nasrullah humbly states: "Hezbollah is not a substitute for the state, even in the matter of resistance. When the state becomes capable and strong enough to defend Lebanon, we in the Resistance will go back to our schools and our universities and affairs" (as-Safir [Beirut], April 8). - The JamesTown Foundation, Global Research and Analysis.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Occupied Kashmir: Rebellion Revived July 2016


         Image source:  Star telegram

Plebiscite (referendum) ONLY path to peace.

Egocentric governments just won't realize that their countries do not become bigger nor more powerful and certainly not prestigious by stealing land.  Additionally, crackdowns on the media in this region by New Delhi have been notoriously and repeatedly brutal.  

If the Indian people truly care for their ""largest democracy,"" they ought to speak out loud and unanimously pressure their government to organize a  referendum in the occupied region in full compliance with the norms of a democratic constitution, granting permission to foreign institutions / individuals to arrive and watch the procedure.  Indian human rights' activists may rally enthusiastically for the independence of Palestine .... then why the silence over an identical scenario in their own backyard, negating their very ideology of humanitarianism while their government continues to distort the institution of democracy right under their nose?   Awfully shameful and hypocritical for sure.