The streets around Cairo's Tahrir Square were again roiled by violent clashes between police and protesters Friday, as crowds gathered to mark two years since the start of the revolution that ousted President Hosni Mubarak. At least 29 protesters have been treated over the past 12 hours for cuts, broken bones and birdshot injuries, Health Ministry spokesman Khaled El Khatib said...
Tag Archives | Middle East
Via Common Dreams:
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In a move of high-tech civil disobedience, thousands of Israeli citizens are donating their right to vote in the upcoming parliamentary elections to their Palestinian neighbors via Facebook.
‘Real Democracy,’ so far has over 1,700 followers and is allowing Israelis to “donate” their votes for the Palestinian cause, giving their ‘second-class’ citizen neighbors an opportunity to participate in the general elections on Tuesday.
Agence France Presse reports:
As a Palestinian living in the West Bank, Mousa Maria has no legal right to vote in Israeli elections this week. But thanks to a protest initiative, an Israeli voter will be casting a ballot for him.
He’s participating in the “Real Democracy” project, a joint campaign launched by Israeli and Palestinian peace activists in which Israeli citizens “donate” their ballot to Palestinians.
Maria will be voting through Shahaf Weisbein for the Arab-Israeli party Balad. He asked Weisbein to vote for the party to show support for its embattled member Hanin Zoabi, who faced attempts to disqualify her from the Knesset last month.
United States involvement in Syria has nothing to do with a repressive regime. After all, in 2002 the United States willingly used Assad’s regime to torture Maher Arar, a Canadian citizen, when they renditioned him to Syria from New York. The world was also quite grateful to Syria for accepting 1.5 million refugees created by the US invasion of Iraq, especially considering that for approximately the same period the United States had only accepted 7,000 Iraqi refugees. What’s happening in Syria is part of a bigger picture, a grand chessboard if you’d like, and what’s happening there is definitely not the end game.
Irrelevant if Assad stays in power or the rebels take control, what’s important to know about Syria is that an attack on Syria is an attack on Iran and a threat to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) – a mutual security organization founded in 2001, which “includes not only the two giants Russia and China, but also the energy-rich Central Asian states Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan.”
How long before religion in general is close to extinction, disinfonauts? From the Telegraph:
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Christianity faces being wiped out of the “biblical heartlands” in the Middle East because of mounting persecution of worshippers, according to a new report.
The study warns that Christians suffer greater hostility across the world than any other religious group.
And it claims politicians have been “blind” to the extent of violence faced by Christians in Africa, Asia and the Middle East.
The most common threat to Christians abroad is militant Islam, it says, claiming that oppression in Muslim countries is often ignored because of a fear that criticism will be seen as “racism”.
It warns that converts from Islam face being killed in Saudi Arabia, Mauritania and Iran and risk severe legal penalties in other countries across the Middle East.
The report, by the think tank Civitas, says: “It is generally accepted that many faith-based groups face discrimination or persecution to some degree.
Via the The New Inquiry, Huw Lemmey on social media as tools of destruction:
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By nightfall tonight that explosion which just shook your neighborhood, in one of the most densely populated areas on earth, will have been liked over 8,000 times on Facebook. Welcome to Gaza City.
The transmutation of territorial control today enters a new topography, an extension of the historical “propaganda war”: control of the networked space online. The IDF have run a comprehensive social media campaign from the first stages of the new assault, announcing the assassination of Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari on Twitter, followed up by YouTube footage of his targeted killing within minutes.
Far from embracing ideas of a futuristic, dehumanising warfare, the instagrams of IDF, processed through the various “retro” and “soft-focus” filters, serve a dual purpose. The first purpose is that of historicization. Much as the hipstamatic literally filters the contemporary condition through the lens of the ’60s and ’70s, the use of “retro” filters removes the images of today’s IDF from their context within the current campaign of blockade and air assault and reframes them as part of the Israeli foundation story.
This was an excellent discussion where Prof. Finkelstein provided a secular perspective focusing on international law, while Mr. Tzortzis shared his perspective as an international public speaker on Islam.
What I found especially of interest, however, were the following opening remarks by Prof. Finkelstein:
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“I was asked to speak on a very specific topic this evening namely ‘How to resolve the conflict’, if I had my choice in the matter I would’ve preferred to speak about what’s happening now in Gaza and more importantly, what seems to be unfolding in Lebanon, which is quite serious and quite ominous. I think we’re headed towards a crossroads in the Israeli-Palestine conflict in Lebanon in the near future, probably in the next several months…
“In my opinion, there is a very sinister plot, and I don’t usually use the word plot, and there is a very sinister conspiracy, and I don’t usually use the word conspiracy, but I do think there is a plot, a conspiracy afoot, not just by the usual suspects the US and Israel, but also France, Italy, Canada, all the western powers are now acting in concert for a decisive moment.
Back in the 1960’s, A British poet, Adrian Mitchell, one of the great bards of that era, wrote a poem that went on to become a stage show in the West End of London. It was called Tell Me Lies about Vietnam and represented one voice among millions in the world then opposing that War
“I was run over by the truth one day
Ever since the accident I’ve walked this way
So stick my legs in plaster
Tell me lies about Vietnam”
Years later, before his death, (and I was at the memorial service in London) he kept rewriting the last paragraph into what he called a remix. The poem took on a more global statement
That verse was a play on a children’s song:
“You put your bombers in, you put your conscience out
You take the human being, and you twist it all about”
And then this line:
“Tell me lies about –
He understood well that Iran was one of the countries his country and others in the West (and their sycophantic media) are telling lies about.… Read the rest