Saturday, 26 June 2010

Ceci n'est pas une pipe

Monday, 21 June 2010

Drought and famine - met with aid flotillas - obviously

Two major aid agencies have launched $10m (£6.7m) appeals for drought-stricken Niger in West Africa.

About seven million people - half of the country's population - face food shortages after crop failures last year.

Aid organisations Oxfam and Save The Children say the situation is growing more critical by the day.

Their concern is shared by the UN, which says the crisis is of a magnitude not seen before.

Save the Children says 400,000 children under five are at risk of starvation.

Oxfam says it will focus help towards a further two million adults who are facing severe food shortages.

The crisis, in the world's most under-developed nation, has been caused by a combination of a crop failure - following a drought last year - along with big increases in the price of many staple foods.
Good to see American nationalists and Islam worried about this. Ships packed with aid, paid for by Americans and "anti-zionists" everywhere are departing shortly. Aren't they? Gotta love those "humanitarians", huh?

Rivero - massive and sickening hypocrisy

News: ISTANBUL, Turkey (June 21) -- Turkish elite commandos today joined mechanized infantry units in a major operation against Kurdish rebels along the country's southern border with Iraq in response to attacks that left 12 Turkish soldiers dead over the weekend.

The deaths come after the Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) earlier this month ended its 14-month cease-fire and began launching almost daily attacks on Turkish military and police.

In a statement e-mailed to AOL News, PKK spokesman Roj Welat said the cease-fire had become "meaningless" in the face of "the destructive and violent approach of the state." As a result, he said, the PKK had decided to "start a mid-intensity war."

The PKK claims 48 Turkish soldiers and 12 guerrillas have been killed in clashes from June 1 to June 14. The Turkish government says 43 members of its security forces and 120 PKK militants have died since an escalation in clashes with the PKK that began in March.

Turkish government forces have been bombing along the border with Iraq and last week launched a cross-border incursion into northern Iraq, where many of the PKK rebels are based.

At a service this past weekend to honor the 12 soldiers killed over the weekend, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to "annihilate" the PKK, which has been in armed conflict with Turkey for decades.

"The terrorists will drown in their own blood," he said. "Such kind of bloody attacks will not be able to divert the direction of our nation to grow and to be a strong and estimable country."

Can anyone tell us why Rivero's attitude is so different between Turkey and Israel? It's because of Joooos, isn't it? What else?

Look at what Rivero writes in response to Turkey's vows to "annihilate terrorists":
Michael Rivero: Memo to Ambassador Jeffrey: the Turks seem to be handling this pretty well on their own, and to the best of my understanding, have not asked for any assistance from the US on this issue to date.

And by the way, why does it appear that neither the US nor the Iraqi military have any control over the Northern Iraqi territory from which the PKK is conducting its military operations?

One would have imagined, a little over 7 years after the invasion of Iraq, that such a problem wouldn't exist on Iraq's northern border by this point in time.
Turkey's handling it "fine"? How so?

It's ok for Turkey to annihilate terrorists (as defined by USA and EU), but not for Israel to board a ship to prevent terrorism (as defined by USA and EU)......WHY? Look at the Turkish position and compare to I/P?
Kurds, make up about 20 percent of Turkey's population........The rhetoric and the violence mark a definitive end to the so-called "Kurdish Initiative" launched by Erdogan's ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) last year. The initiative was meant to end the long-running civil war by better integrating the Kurds into the country and granting them more civil liberties, such as the use of the Kurdish language on television and de facto amnesty for PKK fighters who wanted to lay down arms and return to their villages.
Oh wow - they can even use their own language on TV!
the PKK has waged war against Turkey since 1984. At first it demanded independence for Kurds in southeast Turkey, but it later lowered its demands to calling for an autonomous region and more rights for the Kurds. The group is considered a terrorist organization by the U.S. and the European Union. An estimated 400,000 people have been killed in the 26-year conflict.
Turkey won't even meet demands for an autonomous region.....and more rights for Kurds. Completely different from Israel/Palestine, of course....because the Turks aren't......JOOOOS. What else can it be? Rivero's a piece of shit. Why isn't he getting on an "aid flotilla" for the PKK? Go on, I dare you, Rivero? Better than sending women and children, huh? Despicable.
The appalling repression of the Kurdish people in Turkey is generally unreported in the British media and virtually ignored at Government level. Vast numbers of Kurdish villages have been destroyed and their inhabitants displaced, thousands of people tortured and murdered.

It is only recently that the Kurds were allowed to speak their own language in public. The use of Kurdish in education, broadcasting and publishing is prohibited. Anyone publishing, or attempting to publish, an objective historical analysis of the Kurdish situation is subject to prosecution and imprisonment. Torture is, in fact, commonplace, particularly In police stations. According to International PEN, there are more writers and journalists in prison in Turkey than in any other country in the world, with the exception of China. Turkey is a military, totalitarian regime masquerading as a democracy. State terror Is systematic, savage, merciless. All efforts on the part of the Kurds to bring about a political rather than a military resolution to the conflict have failed and the international community has shown little interest. Turkey isa member of Nato, theUS subsidises its army to the hilt, and of course the country provides rich business opportunities for all Western Democracies.
Rivero thinks this is "being handled fine".

Rivero - sick nutter

Rivero says: "My suggestion for living in peace is, we gotta identify the sociopaths at birth, and drown them right then."


Anyone know how newborn sociopathology presents? What sort of moron can even suggest that to himself, let alone seriously broadcast it?

Rivero lying cunt repeats lies about Ariel Sharon

Mike Rivero, the filthy antisemtic lying cunt repeats his claims that:
Israel has committed an act of war, attacking a US-flagged ship and Americans in international waters; the same crime and for the same reason that Japan attacked US-flagged ships and Americans in 1941. The present government's pathetic roll-over to the attacking nation should end any doubts that Ariel Sharon was not kidding when he stated "We the Jewish people control America, and the Americans know it!"

Rivero - the RonPaul supporting Hypocrite

Today Rivero claims:
Corporations are entities which have no conscience.

Therefore, it is critical to the economic health of a country that appropriate government regulation protect its people from corporate abuse.
Tell it to RonPaul, you moron! You know, the guy you supported for President!? The radical free-marketeer, neo-liberal wanker you supported the last 2 years! Tell it to your friend and employer, Alex Jones? Sheesh.

This coming from Rivero! An anti-socialist, anti-government type, whom believes taxes are illegal! So, if not a capitalist, and not a socialist, what is he? FASCIST.

Yet more Rivero lies (it's endless!)

Rivero doesn't believe Al Qaida exists - he believes it is a product of US/Israeli governments. In fact Rivero appears to believe all terrorism is a product of the same nexus of interests - US and Israel. But really Rivero believes in the Hitlerite idea of World Jewish Conspiracy.

Here's Rivero claiming Al Qaida is fake. The irony is that his quote is fabricated - Robin Cook never said these words.
Fake Al Qaeda

"The truth is, there is no Islamic army or terrorist group called Al Qaida. And any informed intelligence officer knows this. But there is a propaganda campaign to make the public believe in the presence of an identified entity representing the 'devil' only in order to drive the TV watcher to accept a unified international leadership for a war against terrorism. The country behind this propaganda is the US . . ." -- Former British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook
SOURCE: Mike Rivero's WRH
Michael Rivero is a nazi-sympathising, anti-semitic liar. That's why he won't sue if you say it - he knows he is.

Here's Wayne Madsen reporting the same lie.

Seriously, why do people have to invent quotes? Why can't they take the least bit of diligence to find out if they even said these things? They either can't be bothered -- why believe them? --- or they know they're lying -- why believe them?

More provocations - Women sent to break military blockade

Here's the comments made at WRH about this provocation through exploitation of women:
Oh they'll definately sink it now!

The Israeli forces will be PISSED off that the 'scantily-clad' LEBANESE POP-STAR wasn't allowed to sail.

If Israel touches this Lebanese ship full of peace-activist ladies,then the US should NUKE ISRAEL!
God! Israel is such a criminal embarrassment to humanity.
In fact our 'Armada' should be ESCORTING the Lebanese ship through international,open waters,to Gaza,and PROTECTING IT from Israel.
You have no shame Israel or Obama!
06/20/2010 - 16:28

Ladies first. I’m sure that these courageous women can show more strength than any other idea we could come up with. Thanks to the women. We all have a Mother and we all know that Mothers do not like the kinds of things that have been going on in Gaza. Go ladies , no force of human origin can stop you.
06/21/2010 - 01:03
No mothers in Israel, obviously. What will it be next - a boatload of small children, furry animals?

Consider what view the Lebanese, Islam, Rivero and these commenters have of Israel? They see it as a bloodthirsty, irrational, evil, militaristic gangsterism. And yet here they are, applauding the dispatch of shiploads of women (and previously children) to "break the blockade"! They can't see their own moral decrepitude? This is called using human shields. It's exploitation. At least the women won't wield iron bars quite so ferociously.

Left antisemitism - Augean Stables

Post-Modern Antisemitism: Leftist Anti-Zionism

By Richard Landes -

The exception to the rule for my reading of anti-Semitism [largely a “right-wing” phenomenon from people opposed to the liberal impact of Jews on prime-divider cultures] comes when I try to explain the anti-Zionism of progressives. According to my analysis, those who favor the humanistic commitments of civil society – government responsible to the people, freedom of expression, treating the life of commoners as a valuable social good, broad empowerment of populations, both as individuals and as groups, women’s rights, etc. – should side unequivocally with the Israelis. Indeed this is the common cry of Israelis when they appeal to the West for support.

And yet the opposite has happened. Rather than the morality tale I describe above, a radical inversion has occurred in the retelling of this story in modern progressive (leftist) circles. The toxic imperialism and fascist nationalism with genocidal tendencies so prominently on display in the Arab world, appear now as Israeli traits. The Zionists are an imperialist settler colony like the Boer in South Africa or the pilgrims in America. Israel, in this narrative, represents only the latest of that vicious imperialism and nationalism that Europeans and Americans, as they increase their commitments to civil values, come more and more to regret – slavery, genocidal policies that killed millions of natives, ruthless suppression of indigenous culture. The Palestinians, in this reading, represent the oppressed people trying valiantly to free themselves from European-style occupation.

The difficulties of such a reading are immense. They necessitate:
• Romanticizing of the past in which the Arabs of the region were living in an egalitarian society (rather than being occupied by their own elites), in which Muslims and Jews got on famously
• Reversing the vectors of action in which the Israelis initiate the aggression and the Arab violence is a reaction to that aggression
• Viewing the aggressors in the conflict as innocent by virtue of their loss, and the defenders as guilty by virtue of their victory
• Ignoring, or lightly condemning all of the immensely depraved actions of the Arab leadership (killing their own “dissidents”, imprisoning and immiserating their “refugees”, suicide terrorism) as “understandable” given their frustration and “lack of hope” while criticizing every Israeli act against these deeds as inexcusably disproportionate aggression.
• Accepting the statements that Arabs make in English as an index of their intentions, and ignoring what they say in Arabic, thus dismissing any possibility that they still harbor desires to wipe out Israel. (As one confident analyst put it on NPR: “Any Palestinian with a three-digit I.Q. knows that Israel is here to stay.”)

Such readings are possible. Indeed there is a whole academic literature dedicated to just such analyses, and a press that generally covers the events essentially from this framework, and a large body of left-wing and pro-Arab ideologues who assume it is true. It results in a widespread consensus that views events in an “even-handed” manner, one in which both sides have reasonable positions (even if the Palestinian position must be attributed to them in order to make it reasonable), both have done reprehensible things, and both should just sit down and work this out in negotiations. Such thinking, generous in its belief in the good intentions of both sides, results in astoundingly inaccurate and harmful analyses. By failing to distinguish between a shame culture dominated by a political prime-divider on the one hand, and a guilt culture, organized by the principles of a civil society – indeed projecting onto both sides the same liberal values and commitments – progressives undermine the very forces they believe they strengthen.
• they systematically misread events, assuming that, for example, the Israelis must be guilty of the pain and suffering of the Palestinian refugees, since who would imagine that the Arabs would do this to their own people.
• they fall prey to the use of Western liberal language by people who have no commitment to it, believing, for example that the Palestine Liberation Organization is dedicated to freeing the Palestinian people, not destroying the Israelis
• they adopt the demonizing narrative of the Arab elites, reinforcing their grip on the populations that they victimize in the name of fighting the Zionist imperial entity
• they abandon one of the rare independent cultures that share their progressive values, excoriating them for their lack of restraint precisely where they demonstrate a level of restraint no Western country has ever shown
• they justify behavior (terrorism, especially suicide mass murder) as “legitimate expressions of frustration” that set a catastrophic precedent for the dangerous and delicate task of globalization that faces us in the coming decades and centuries.
• They label as racism any attempt to point out the violent, hate-mongering racism of the Palestinians and Arabs.

One might ask, why such self-destructive behavior? Why attack those who represent the very cutting edge of the culture you have worked so hard to create? Why side so enthusiastically with people who despise you and your culture, and want nothing more than to dominate you? Why empower a narrative and an elite that treats its own with such merciless cruelty?

At one level, one can analyze this as an honest mistake, one that systematically underestimates the difficulty of achieving a civil society, and assumes that such “rational” behavior lies within the grasp of any culture. Thus, the Palestinians would love to build a civil nation if only the Israelis would leave them alone (end the occupation), and as soon as the Israelis make enough concessions, the Palestinians will respond accordingly. Similarly, Arabs value the lives of their children just as much as Israelis do, or, in Ted Koppel’s words, “I refuse to believe that Palestinian mothers mourn their dead children any less than Israeli mothers.” Indeed to suggest otherwise would be racist.

This of course means that one must look away from the behavior of mothers who, their daughters killed by their husbands and sons for having “shamed” the family, insist that they do not mourn. They may indeed mourn as Ted Koppel (and I) suspect, but the public culture demands that they do not, and they comply. When we look away from such profoundly different cultural phenomena, we fail to ask such pertinent questions as: If these violent men will kill their own children for shaming them, what would they do, could they, to the Israelis for shaming their culture and religion? Similarly, when reporters do not know about honor killings, they cannot understand the attitudes of families toward suicide “martyrs.”

The result becomes profoundly superficial and subtly racist. When, as many will profess in an almost off-handed way, suicide bombers are the expression of hopelessness – “what else can they do?” – one assumes two terrible things about the antagonists. First, one assumes that the Jews are as evil as the Palestinians present them, ruthless, genocidal killers who throttle any decent desire for independence among Palestinians; and second one assumes that Palestinians have so impoverished a moral culture that they have no choice but to engage in the most depraved and vicious form of child sacrifice in the recorded history of mankind in order to get their way. Deconstructed, such banal remarks underscore the poverty of such off-hand sympathy for the “poor Palestinians.”

Nowhere does the intellectual and moral failure of even-handedness appear more blatantly than on the question of racism. Jews and Israelis often accuse the Arabs of being anti-Semitic. No, reply the Arabs, for we too are Semites, so how can we be anti-Semitic? Facetious, perhaps, but nonetheless an argument that seems to carry weight. Rather than accept the argument, however, it should then shift our attention from the specifically racist quality of late 19th and 20th century antisemitism to the more general demonizing hatreds of medieval and early modern antisemitism.

Rather than moving in such a direction however – again a desire to avoid the unpleasantness of accusing a whole culture of hatemongering – the discourse then takes a stunning turn. Not only are the Arabs not antisemites, the Israelis are racists. This accusation, which is patently false – no country in the world has as much racial, religious, and cultural diversity as Israel – and even wrong where the Israeli’s treatment of their Arab Muslim and Christian minorities are concerned (our society would, as Scott Andersen recently admitted on NPR, have produced vigilante groups to intimidate any group that dared to attack our civilians in the manner of the suicide bombers, who get a 80% approval rating among their fellow Arabs).

And yet the accusation carries great weight, not only in organizations like the UN which voted in 1985 under the presidency of a former and unrepentant Nazi, Kurt Waldheim to condemn Zionism as racism, but also in the widespread parallels drawn between South African apartheid and Israeli treatment of Palestinians. The appalling logic here came to a stunning climax just after the second Intifada, in the summer of 2001 at Durban, a conference supposedly dedicated to fighting racism around the world, but which spent most of its time dealing with Arab denunciations of Zionist “racism,” and ended with condemnations of the Atlantic slave trade (i.e., historical European trade) and no mention of the Indian Ocean slave trade (i.e., current Arab trade). The fact that the Arabs demonized the Jews should not have surprised anyone who follows the narratives that dominate Arab press, academic, and political discourse, but the acquiescence, even the enthusiastic support of NGOs, the self-appointed bastions of civil society around the world, deserves pondering. Even liberals with enough sense to see the excessive nature of the attack, preferred to regret the excess as an “unfortunate distraction,” than focus on the revealing contradiction of demonizing racists successfully accusing others of racism.


I have certainly been guilty of this - out of ignorance and a desire to be "even-handed". A mistake, in practice: mea culpa.

Demopaths and Dupes - AugeanStables

I came across an excellent description which applies to Michael Rivero et al, Nazism, and extreme Islam-ism. Others too, no doubt, but for my purposes, it's a perfect fit.

It's from Richard Landes' (?) Augeanstables, which also has an excellent critique of Left-antisemitism (the best I've come across so far):

Demopaths are people who use democratic language and invoke human rights only when it serves their interests, and not when it calls for self-criticism or self-restraint. Demopaths demand stringent levels of human “rights” but do not apply these basic standards for the “other” to their own behavior. The most lethal demopaths use democratic rights to destroy democracy.

Demopaths differ from civil-society free-riders; the latter enjoy more rights than they grant to others simply out of selfishness or laziness. Demopaths are fundamentally hostile to granting others’ rights, and secretly despise the values of civil society (which demands that they tolerate and respect others). Instead of coming along for the ride, they want to sink the boat.

Demopaths use the jargon of civil society and human rights to convince their targets. Through this progressive discourse, demopaths exploit on people eager to believe that civic values can resolve the problem. Sometimes demopaths are completely hostile to the cultures in which they live, and manipulate human rights as a Trojan horse to enter the city and sack it.

Demopathy is a zero-sum to negative-sum game. It pursues the destruction of the system (demopaths win and reestablish plunder-or-be-plundered aristocracy); in the process, it destroys the system’s very capacity to produce what made it attractive to plunder in the first place. Demopaths do not view opponents as members of a positive-sum collective, but as enemies to be destroyed. In its most virulent stages, demopathy is violently paranoid.


- Radical imbalance between their insistence on asserting their own rights, and their lack of interest in defending the rights of others.
- Moral rhetoric expressing great indignation when appealing for personal rights.
- Tendency to tell demonizing tales of the enemies (of “human rights”)
- Tendency to think in conspiratorial terms (they are conspirators themselves), and to project ill will onto opponents/enemies.
- Do minimal (required) work protecting the rights of others, especially opponents/enemies.

A demopathic organization would protest the media portraying its ethnic/religious affiliates as “terrorists” (inadmissible negative stereotyping), but would not protest the terrorist acts perpetrated by members of their ethnic/religious group (permissible wanton murder of civilians).

As long as civil society is healthy, demopaths stay hidden. Ever since the bombings in London, the number of demopaths revealed by the investigative energy of its own reporters or the brazenness of the demopaths themselves has risen substantially. Since most cases of demopathy must be approached carefully without pre-judging the evidence, we prefer to use these examples and leave the larger questions to each individual.

Bad Joke?

According to one version, the definition of chutzpah is when someone kills their parents and pleads to the court for mercy because he’s an orphan. The joking definition of a demopath, then might be the foreigner who applies for a loan from the agricultural department in a democratic country in order to buy a crop duster with outsized tanks. Although his intention is to spray poison on the local population, when his loan is refused because he is a foreigner with no obvious need for a crop duster, he accuses the agency of racist xenophobia. Is this an urban legend?


Demopaths believe that all interaction between people works according to the principle “rule or be ruled” – the dominating imperative. In order for me to prevent you from dominating me, I must dominate you first. This approach to others normally produces prime divider societies where the elite (aristocracy) use their power to dominate the masses. But civil society clips the wings of those who would use force to dominate others. In such conditions, people who refuse to give up the dominating imperative go underground and become demopaths, using all the freedom that civil societies offer to work for their destruction. Until recently, the attitude of civil societies has been to grandfather demopathic tendencies, assuming that the benefits of civic abundance will win over all but the most mean-spirited player.

Demopathic discourse mirrors that of human rights. Thus, it is often difficult to detect the difference. Because discerning demopaths means assessing motive, it requires personal judgment. Therefore, demopathy is best illustrated through examples. In the cases presented below, we invite you to comment on whether or not, in your opinion, the particular case reflects demopathy or sincere commitment to human rights.SOURCE:
Rivero, Alex Jones, Islamism, and Nazism all make use of this method. It's a great description of their technique.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Guardian's Nick Cohen

“The leaders of Ba’athist Syria or theocratic Iran or monarchical Saudi Arabia do not faithfully reproduce the fantasies of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion solely because they hate Jews. They need a conspiracy theory to divert the attention of their subject populations from the failures of their rule as badly as the tsars did in the 1900s and the Nazis in the 1930s. Then, as now, the ability to brand political opponents as Zionist fifth columnists and liberal principles as decadent Jewish ruses that divert the faithful from fulfilling their religious or racial destiny are essential aids to the maintenance of their power.

Hamas, around which the disputes about aid to Gaza rage, is a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, which fused fascist and radical Islamist ideas during the German push into the Middle East during the Second World War. Large chunks of its constitution are lifted from European racism – Jewish money controls the world’s “media, news agencies, the press, publishing houses, broadcasting stations”; the Jews were behind “the French revolution, the communist revolution and most of the revolutions we hear about” and so on.

As with the European reactionaries of the 20th century, Islamists do not stop with Jew hatred. Advances for radical Islam are always disasters for women, homosexuals, democrats, socialists and free thinkers. Put like this, the behaviour of European liberals seems more reprehensible than ever.”

Turkey / Kurds - conflict in silence

June 19, 2010
Eight Turkish soldiers killed in clashes near border
By Suzan Fraser, Associated Press

Kurdish rebels attacked a military outpost near the Iraqi border early today, sparking clashes in which at least eight soldiers and 12 Kurdish rebel fighters were killed, Turkey's military said. Fourteen other soldiers were wounded in the fighting.

The military immediately sent special forces as reinforcements to the area while helicopter gunships and artillery fire targeted rebel positions, the military said in a statement.

Separately, Turkish warplanes attacked rebel positions across the border in northern Iraq, it said.

Kurdish rebels have dramatically stepped up attacks in Turkey in recent months, threatening a government attempt to end one of the world's longest guerrilla wars. Six soldiers were killed and seven others wounded last month in a rocket attack on a vehicle near a naval base in southern Turkey.

Turkey's military has responded by sending warplanes across the border for raids on suspected rebel bases while elite commandos crossed the border in pursuit of the rebels in a daylong incursion earlier this week.

The rebels belonging to the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, have used northern Iraq as a springboard to stage hit-and-run attacks on Turkish targets in their decades-long campaign for autonomy in Turkey's Kurdish-dominated southeast. The Turkish military says around 4,000 rebels are based just across the border in Iraq and that about 2,500 operate inside Turkey.

The group declared it was increasing attacks on June 1, a day after imprisoned Kurdish rebel chief Abdullah Ocalan said in a statement relayed by his lawyers that his calls for rebel dialogue with Turkey had been ignored and that he was giving his consent to the rebel command in northern Iraq to determine which course of action to take.

The military said today's attack occurred at 2am on an outpost near the town of Semdinli - a mountainous region where the borders of Turkey, Iraq and Iran meet. Private NTV television, without citing sources, said a large group of PKK rebels infiltrated the area from hideouts across the Iraqi border.

Clashes in the region were continuing sporadically, NTV said.

The United States, which along with the European Union, has declared the PKK to be a terrorist group, has provided intelligence to Turkey in support of its fight against the rebels. Turkey also uses drones it recently purchased from Israel.

Armagan Kuloglu, a retired general and military analyst, said, however, there appeared to be a deficiency in the intelligence and that the advance of the rebels should have been detected.

Yesterday, the military said it had killed as many as 120 Kurdish rebels in an air raid on rebel positions in northern Iraq last month and in this week's incursion by elite commandos who crossed the border to hunt down a group of PKK rebels who escaped after a failed attack near the border town of Uludere.

Turkey has launched several air and ground incursions into northern Iraq over the 26 years of the insurgency, with mixed results. The rebels have returned to positions along the border soon after the troops have withdrawn.

The Marxist group has been labeled a terrorist organization by the West for killing civilians in urban bombings and arson attacks and slaying government teachers, engineers and clergymen.

The government has extended greater cultural rights to the Kurds such as broadcasts in the Kurdish language on television, in an effort to win their hearts and reduce support for the rebels.

Turkey, however, rejects calls from the Kurdish rebels and politicians to allow education in schools in Kurdish. The language is also barred in parliament and other official settings on the grounds that its use would divide the country along ethnic lines.

The conflict has killed as many as 40,000 people since 1984.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Rivero - bald deception

I was reading Rivero's essay on "fake terror" for the previous post. I saw something odd, and was going to raise it, but decided against it. But I've just read something else at his site - "a new WRH Exclsuive" (wooo)- which completely contradicts his earlier position.

Here's what he wrote years back, explaining how "fake terror" is supposedly used to manipulate public opinion, in this example America's entry to WW2:
Roosevelt needed an enemy, and if America would not willingly attack that enemy, then one would have to be maneuvered into attacking America, much as Marcus Licinius Crassus has maneuvered Spartacus into attacking Rome.

The way open to war was created when Japan signed the tripartite agreement with Italy and Germany, with all parties pledging mutual defense to each other. Whereas Hitler would never declare war on the United States no matter the provocation, the means to force Japan to do so were readily at hand.

The first step was to place oil and steel embargoes on Japan, using Japan's wars on the Asian mainland as a reason. This forced Japan to consider seizing the oil and mineral rich regions in Indonesia. With the European powers militarily exhausted by the war in Europe, the United States was the only power in the Pacific able to stop Japan from invading the Dutch East Indies, and by moving the Pacific fleet from San Diego to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Roosevelt made a pre-emptive strike on that fleet the mandatory first step in any Japanese plan to extend its empire into the "southern resource area".

Roosevelt boxed in Japan just as completely as Crassus had boxed in Spartacus. Japan needed oil. They had to invade Indonesia to get it, and to do that they first had to remove the threat of the American fleet at Pearl Harbor. There never really was any other course open to them.
Well, I wouldn't listen to Rivero for any history - why trust him at all. But notice the strength of his argument that Japan had no choice but to react USA provocation? I thought this was a pretty ridiculous view when I read it first, but look at this new post of Rivero's where he likens Israel's 'attack' on the flotilla to Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour? Look at how his ideological and tactical need dictates his view of history (and not the other way around):
Back in 1941, there was this foreign nation, Japan, which was illegally occupying other peoples' lands in China and Indonesia.

There were Americans in close proximity to that foreign nation, in the then-territory of Hawaii, and even though the Americans had not actually done much of anything, that foreign nation decided it had the right to attack and kill Americans just on the off chance that somewhere down the road, they might be in inconvenience.

Thus came about the attack on Pearl Harbor.
Some difference, huh?!! Sheesh. In the first one Rivero has to emphasis the US government's desire to enter war - and so Japan is cast as a poor trapped manipulated innocent. But in the second, so as to rhetorically attack Israel, Japan is cast as an aggressive, imperial power, which attacked the USA. Same events, completely different explanations - dependent on the propaganda needs of the moment. The guy is mentally ill if he doesn't recognise these contradictions. If he does recognise them (even only to himself), he's obviously working a propaganda agenda for which the truth is voluntarily and consciously disregarded as necessary.

Rivero on Terrorism. Islam and the far-right

If one's premises lead to a logical conclusion which is absurd, there's something wrong with your premises.
MR@WRH: Indeed, given that acts of terror undermine the very public support needed by the so-called "terrorists" to bring about change, it may be argued that there are in fact no genuine acts of terror; that they are all manufactured events to be blamed on the groups wishing to challenge the status quo.
But what if groups who want to obliterate the status quo actually undertake terrorism? It isn't impossible - indeed, it's ridiculous to assume it never happens and therefore it must all be manufactured. How stupid! Taking such a position removes all responsibility from terrorism itself - its political goals, its ideological content and the organisations/individuals which support and sustain it.

Rivero's conception is that 'all terorism is "fake terror"' - a complete absolving of responsibility, and a transference of it to....whom/what?:


Michael Rivero
It's the oldest trick in the book, dating back to Roman times; creating the enemies you need."
Is it? The oldest trick?
The Reichstag fire was a disaster for Communists because they received the blame for starting it, but it was a dream come true for Hitler and his cohorts as it allowed them to turn Germany into a dictatorship.
It seems clear though that the Communists were not responsible. But Rivero's next sentence runs:
Did the Bush administration try the same trick on September 11, 2001?

The victims of the 9/11 attacks have been disaster for Muslims because 19 Arabs were named as hijackers of the plane
[SIC] A poor sentence by Rivero, nevertheless, blaming 911 on "muslims" [who did do it*] is hardly the same as blaming communists for the Reichstag when they didn't do it! (*the evidence points to what it does - and nobody with any sense claims it was "muslims" who did it - the evidence points to radical, fundamentalist elements of Islam - which surely do not represent the entirety of Islam and all muslims, and cannot reasonably regarded as such. The charge is not "muslims did it" - but certain sections/sects/schools of Islam-ism......Al Qaida. That's what the evidence points to.]

Why should we accept all terrorism is "manufactured" based on such an argument? Communists didn't do the Reichstag therefore extreme Islam-ism-ists can't have done 911, nor Bali, nor London, nor Madrid! All terrorism is manufactured - it doesn't actually exist!

Rivero gives a hint of who he's suggesting really is responsible, and now it isn't a government administration as earlier suggested - it's morphing into something else:
"[The 911 attacks have] been a dream come true for the PNAC 'think-tank'"
PNAC is associated with 911 conspiracy, predominantly with a anti-Zionsit/anti-semitic slant. Israel/Jewish conspiracy. PNAC does have a lot of seemingly obvious pro-Israel influence, of course, but it also has a lot of Turkish influence. Several of the members are now registered as representing Turkish State Interests in USA.....Perle for example. [Doesn't that cause problems for Bill Kristol's WeeklyStandard etc? No?] The names that show up for PNAC - which conspiracists all know and associate with Israel - also show in Sibel Edmonds' accusations - but in association with Turkey! But no-one much notices. Rivero doesn't.....
MR: There can be only one reason for the above - 9/11 wasn't a surprise attack, it was a governmentally orchestrated "catastrophic and catalyzing event".
So, American and German (and Israeli!) governments are capable, if not compelled to produce 'fake terror'. But the Turkish state, Iran, Taliban, Al Qaida, cannot do so - they cannot/will not produce real terror. It just doesn't exist. This is fantasy.
MR: bin Laden strongly denied any role in the attacks and suggested that Zionists orchestrated the 9-11 attacks.
Bin Laden sounds like Rivero, then:
Rivero: The compliant mainstream media completely ignored the Israeli connection. Immediately following the 9-11 attacks the media was filled with stories linking the attacks to bin Laden. TV talking-heads, "experts", and scribblers of every stripe spoon-fed a gullible American public a steady diet of the most outrageous propaganda imaginable.

Bin Laden: "I was not involved in the September 11 attacks in the United States nor did I have knowledge of the attacks. There exists a government within a government within the United States. The United States should try to trace the perpetrators of these attacks within itself; to the people who want to make the present century a century of conflict between Islam and Christianity. That secret government must be asked as to who carried out the attacks. ... The American system is totally in control of the Jews, whose first priority is Israel, not the United States."
Rivero does a good job for Bin Laden......and imagine if Rivero's completely wrong and Bin Laden is responsible? Rivero position looks pretty sick then. Look at his defence of Bin laden:
To date, the only shred of “evidence” to be uncovered against bin Laden is a barely audible fuzzy amateur video that the Pentagon just happened to find "lying around" in Afghanistan. How very convenient, and how very fake.

There is no evidence, be it hard or circumstantial, to link the Al Qaeda "terrorist network" to these acts of terror, but there is a mountain of evidence, both hard and circumstantial, which suggests that Zionists have been very busy framing Arabs for terror plots against America.
Bin Laden is exonerated, and "Zionists" blamed instead.

Rivero's argument starts at the Reichstag and concludes "Jews did 911....!!"

Worth noting that Rivero here accepts the deceptiveness of Nazism to make his argument about extremes of Government deception - Reichstag, Gleiwitz radio station. But this doesn't seem to effect his view of the Holocaust, about which he all too keen to believe the Nazis and their apologists. Nor does it ever seem to impinge on his wider support for Nazism at all in any way. This seems a familiar theme amongst these crypto-fascist conspiracists -- they only criticise Nazism by inference, when they wish to make their targets look bad eg claims like "the government acts like the Nazis by blaming Muslims for 911", or, "Gaza is like Warsaw! A concentration camp!" etc. Suddenly concentration camps and the Ghettos are an historic fact!! At least one might expect so? Furthermore, most people making such complaints would happily turn the tables and subject their supposed enemies (the Jews) to the same. Such people don't oppose events or the status quo on principle - only their position within it. They're pissed because they're powerless - but they'd happily change places. No deep principle at work.
Michael Rivero: Let us consider that the war began with the attack on the USS Liberty. Let us freeze Israel's assets in the US the way Palestinian and Arab assets have been frozen. Let us treat suspected Israeli spies and terrorists the way suspected Arab spies and terrorist are treated.
This is very similar to Rivero's many calls for hackers to be sent to Guantanamo. Good enough for hackers, but an outrage for Islamic warriors? Hmmm.

Ron Paul - On the Oil Leak

Criticises those attacking government. "It's an accident - not criminal!" Gold is raised - as a conflict of interest. He's not very convincing on that at all. Only other peoples' interests can conflict, his don't. Hmmm.


Buncefield fire: Oil storage firm found guilty of safety breaches

Company controlled by Total and Chevron has been found guilty of grave safety failures that led to the largest fire in peacetime Europe

A company controlled by Total and Chevron has been found guilty of host of grave safety failures that led to the Buncefield oil depot explosion and the largest fire in peacetime Europe.

Hertfordshire Oil Storage Limited (HOSL), which was owned by the oil conglomerates, was found guilty of failing to prevent major accidents and limit their effects, it was revealedtoday.

The guilty verdict followed one of the most complex corporate criminal trials of its kind and is a major blow for Total, the major shareholder.

It will also intensify global concern over the safety practices of international companies. BP's chief executive, Tony Hayward, is under unrelenting pressure over safety lapses suspected to have caused the Deepwater Horizon oil rig disaster, the cause of the largest offshore oil spill in US history.

The Buncefield blast on 11 December 2005 had a magnitude of 2.4 and the subsequent plume which drifted across Europe was visible from space. The destruction at the depot came after a huge vapour cloud ignited when 250,000 litres of petrol leaked from one of its tanks.

The explosion injured 43 people, destroyed homes and businesses and could be heard 125 miles away. Prosecutors said it was miraculous that there were no fatalities, a fact largely attributed to the accident happening early on a Sunday. The jury of 11 men and one woman were told that the environmental damage caused was still not known.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Allen L Roland - Idiot

[from] Allen L Roland's Weblog


Mazza poem


" Stiffen your back and click your heels
and thrust your right hand to the Fuhrer
morphing into Netanyahu
and the Nazi crowds of Judah,
becoming their own murderers,
replacing their lost with living Gazans,
Palestine no longer theirs,
an open prison and sore surpassing
the ghettos of Warsaw, Lodz and Krakow,
Jewish sections now Arab quarters
rolling towards a final solution
like the tanks and bulldozers flattening
what life stands that slings a stone back
like David to Goliath, blinding his wrath,
children of another god
in name only, the creation
sentencing the killers to sterility
by depleted uranium
packed in the shower of bombs they dropped
whose radioactive response was blind,
attacking the organs of life on the wind,
leaving the future a two-state graveyard,
burying the Fourth Reich with its victims,
death by a remorseless reversal of history,
a universal amnesia as the
edifices crumble like Berlin
into a thousand years of dust. "

Let's make the world's outcry too loud to ignore. Join the petition for an international investigation into the raid, accountability for those responsible, and an immediate end to the blockade in Gaza ~ click to sign the petition, and then forward this message to everyone on your mailing list.

Moshe Dayan, Israel’s most celebrated general, famously outlined the strategy he believed would keep Israel’s enemies at bay "Israel must be a like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother " but this mad dog is rabid and must be delt with immediately ~ even at the laughable risk of being called Anti-Semitic.

More fabulous treasures at his blog? He wants donations, if you're feeling flush enough to do worse than throw money away.

Algeria 0 - 0 England

focomo focomo

18 Jun 2010, 9:26PM
This comment has been removed by a moderator.


18 Jun 2010, 9:33PM

Disgraceful. Embarrassing stuff. Pathetic really. No vision, no chances created, up against a dodgy keeper and never put him under pressure.

I mean, if they can't beat that hopeless, clueless shower, then Algeria don't deserve to go through.

Rivero - hypocrite

MR: Okay for Israel to blockade Gaza, but illegal for Arizona to protect their borders? Does this makes any sense to anyone?


But Rivero supports Arizona immigration law. And opposes the blockade. Mexican workers are more dangerous than Grads?

Proof of anti-semitism? As featured at WRH

MR: Israel, alone among all other UN members, had two conditions placed on its membership, a right of return for Palestinians who lost their homes when Israel was created, and full compensation for those Palestinians who chose not to return. Israel has not complied with either condition.

Israel, alone among all other UN members, had two conditions placed on its membership.

Is it only me that finds that odd? Clearly the bald fact of exceptionalism towards Israel doesn't register.

Rivero on Israel's jailing of "racists"

MR: One has to shake one's head at the overt,blatant racism, from one Jewish group in Israel against another at this point in the 21st century.


But Israel is jailing people for this supposed "racism"!! The people being jailed say they were there were before the state of Israel and its laws - "Why should we submit to nation-state-law?" they ask. If these were Americans, not Jews, Rivero would be behind them, for their defiance of ThePowersThatBe - and their "right" to be racist. Instead Rivero sees just division..... [Odd amongst the people who he supposes rule the world with one voice and one mission? No? lol]

CURT MAYNARD!!! Home schooling!!! Libertarianism!!!!!! Where'd that go all a sudden, Rivero? CURT MAYNARD!!!!

BBC on Crime - lol

Most people would accept that many acts committed by and against children, while technically unlawful, are not really crimes in the way we understand it.

Sibel Edmonds - After Flotilla

Sibel Edmonds, Turkey and the Bomb
A Real 9/11 Cover-Up?

By DAVE LINDORFF - January 7, 2008

If a new article just published Saturday in the Times of London based upon information provided by US government whistleblower Sibel Edmonds, a 37-year-old former Turkish language translator for the FBI, we have not only solid evidence of prior knowledge of 9-11 by high up US government officials, but evidence of treasonous activity by many of those same officials involving efforts to provide US nuclear secrets to America's enemies, even including Al Qaeda.

The Sunday Times reports that Edmonds, whose whistleblowing efforts have been studiously ignored by what passes for the news media in American news media, approached the Rupert Murdoch-owned British paper a month ago after reading a report there that an Al-Qaeda leader had been training some of the 9-11 hijackers at a base in Turkey, a US NATO alley, under the noses of the Turkish military.

Edmonds, who was recruited by the FBI after 9-11 because of her Turkish and Farsi language skills, has long been claiming that in her FBI job of covertly monitoring conversations between Turkish, Israeli, Persian and other foreign agents and US contacts, including a backlog of untranslated tapes dating back to 1997, she had heard evidence of "money laundering, drug imports and attempts to acquire nuclear and conventional weapons technology." But the Turkish training for 9-11 rang more alarm bells and made her decide that talking behind closed doors to Congress or the FBI was not enough. She had to go public.

Edmonds claims in the Times that even as she was providing evidence of moles within the US State Department, the Pentagon, and the nuclear weapons establishment, who were providing nuclear secrets for cash, through Turkey, to Pakistan's intelligence agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence, or ISI, agencies within the Bush administration were actively working to block investigation and to shield those who were committing the acts of treason.

Pakistan's ISI is known to have had, and to still maintain close contacts with Al-Qaeda. Indeed, the Times notes that Pakistan's nuclear god-father, General Mahmoud Ahmad, was accused of sanctioning a $100,000 wire payment to Mohammed Atta, one of the 9/11 hijackers, immediately before the attacks.

Edmonds claims, in the Times article, that following the 9-11 attacks, FBI investigators took a number of Turkish and Pakistani operatives into custody for questioning about foreknowledge of the attacks, but that a high-ranking US State Department official repeatedly acted to spirit them out of the country.

Edmonds was fired from her FBI translating job in 2002 after she accused a colleague of having illicit contact with Turkish officials.

If Edmonds' story is correct, and Al-Qaeda, with the aid of Turkish government agents and Pakistani intelligence, with the help of US government officials, has been attempting to obtain nuclear materials and nuclear information from the U.S., it casts an even darker shadow over the mysterious and still unexplained incident last August 30, when a B-52 Stratofortress, based at the Minot strategic air base in Minot, ND, against all rules and regulations of 40 years' standing, loaded and flew off with six unrecorded and unaccounted for nuclear-tipped cruise missiles.

That incident only came to public attention because three as yet unidentified Air Force whistleblowers contacted a reporter at the Military Times newspaper, which ran a series of stories about it, some of which were picked up by other US news organizations.

Yet in view of Edmonds' story to the London Times, alleging that there has been an ongoing, active effort for some years by both Al Qaeda and by agents of two US allies, Turkey and Pakistan, to get US nuclear weapons secrets and even weapons, and that there are treasonous moles at work within the American government and nuclear bureaucracy aiding and abetting those efforts, surely at a minimum, a major public inquiry is called for.

Meanwhile, there is enough in just this one London Times story to keep an army of investigative reporters busy for years. So why, one has to ask, is this story appearing in a highly respected British newspaper, but not anywhere in the corporate US media?

Dave Lindorff is the author of Killing Time: an Investigation into the Death Row Case of Mumia Abu-Jamal. His book of CounterPunch columns titled "This Can't be Happening!" is published by Common Courage Press. Lindorff's newest book is "The Case for Impeachment", co-authored by Barbara Olshansky.

I've previously been struck by how Sibel Edmonds' claims were taken by the anti-semites of TheTroofMoovement: she actually accuses Turkey and Saudi Arabia, not Israel. Yet that's often how she's presented.

But in light of the flotilla fury, and the obviously newly provocative Turkey moving closer to Iran and away from NATO/Europe, and their possible sympathy and aid for all the IHH, Hamas, Muslim Brotherhood, Al Qaida stuff, Edmonds' claims are suddnly much more interesting. For one thing, why Rivero ignores it?

Somehow, people like Rivero don't seem to want to know anymore? He's full-on in support of the Turks - as he is with any Islamic regime, no matter how hardline. Rivero has even been whooping about how great Ahmadinejad's threat of sending a flotilla was - as if starting a regional war was a step forward!

And here's Sibel Edmonds, one-time favourite of the Troofers, and what she's said is being ignored.

ETA: From Edmonds' present website (BoilingFrogs):
Recently released FBI documents prove the existence of highly sensitive National Security and criminal investigations of “Turkish Activities” in Chicago prior to September 11, 2001. These documents add further support to many of the allegations that former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds has claimed, in public and in Congress, since 2002. The documents were released under a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request into an organization called the Turkish American Cultural Alliance (TACA), an organization repeatedly named by Ms. Edmonds as being complicit in the crimes that she became aware of when she was a translator at the FBI.
Compare that to what appears at WhatReallyHappened:

The chiefs of staff for Barack and Michele Obama are both Ashkenazim from Chicago, long a center of foreign espionage. That fact was recently reconfirmed by Federal Bureau of Investigation translator Sibel Edmonds when, from FBI wiretaps, she documented the close working relationship between the Israel Lobby and U.S. officials with power over policy making in the Middle East, including Richard Perle, Wolfowitz understudy Douglas Feith and key members of Congress
It doesn't even mention Turkey! Or the fact that Chicago is centre of Turkish activity AND the Muslim Brotherhood.

Indeed, in a previous post I mentioned that a lawyer, who worked for Muslim Brotherhood connected organisations in CHICAGO(!) was apparently using WRH's email when asking for feedback on his essays. I can't yet see any reason to discount the fact Rivero is an extreme fundamentalist muslim supporter of radical Islam. Certainly he does absolutely nothing to criticise it, and every position he takes defends it, and pushes blame elsewhere. Bizarre.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Gaza a Giant Prison?

These pictures from Gaza have been recently published in The Guardian. They are quite astonishing to witness alongside all the fury and moral outrage generated by the idea that Gaza is a modern Warsaw Ghetto. That's a pretty insulting view, imo, used only to twist the knife of the Holocaust a malevolent and cruel reminder. I don't know what life in Gaza is really like, but nor do most people. Though one wouldn't imagine so to listen to them tell you how it is.

Anyway, these pictures are dramatic. Look at the health of the children in the photos. Look at the conditions - hardly a concentration camp. Of course, this is a very narrow view of Gaza, it would be ridiculous to take any group of pictures as representative. But that cuts both ways and is what people appear to be missing. These pictures make a sharp illustartion of that, I think.

Palestinian children play at a summer camp run by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) on a beach in Gaza City
Photograph: Mohammed Abed/AFP/Getty Images

Rivero out in the Open - and exposed

I had a ding-dong with Mr Michael Rivero of WhatReallyHappened website. It's a rare event for Mr Rivero to put himself in a position to face the public. Mr Rivero inhabits a world where he can usually control everything that's said.

Rivero had bragged he'd had a letter published in the Honolulu Advertiser (about America, Israel and the flotilla). Rivero had 'invited' his readers to thank the Honolulu newspaper, leaving their email for his supporters to click, and a link to the page on which doubtless they were 'supposed' to leave comments.

I took the opportunity and what followed was a 3 day rumpus of comments which ended at a total of some 370+ comments - it proved a very interesting and extensive review of Rivero and his methods. And of his ethics, and those of his "crowd".

Rivero is now trumpeting the exchange as one wherein he was using me as "target-practice", that I am a MegaPhoney, that I wanted to stifle debate about Israel to protect her from the least criticism. His hypocrisy and deceit is endless! (That's why he provides such a rich source of it.)

The thread at the Honolulu Advertiser is here

Here's Rivero inviting his followers to back him up..... Rivero-Phonies?

The comments added by members(?) of WRH are here.
Notice the difference in tone between what 'the good members' of WRH say when they're at home compared to when they're in the public, as at the newspaper's comments board.

The single comment for this post of Rivero's says: "Would I be correct in assuming that ...this newspaper is not owned by a Ziotard?"

Here's Rivero again

I would invite anyone to read that thread and imagine that "Israel's MegaPhonies(!) piled-in". It was just me? A few other people kept some threads going, one apparently strong and very broadly anti-Islamist. But I was there on my own - Rivero invited people to comment.

I also invite anyone to assess whether my comments were without substance, not backed-up, As Rivero claims - completely falsely in my opinion, and in objective fact I would tender.

As for "anti-semitism" performing the same role as "communist" once did (in America) -- there's a major difference in the content and substance of the accusation. This just looks like a Nazi whom, on fear of exposure, is screaming McCarthyite!!

I mean, since when did Rivero cease using "Communist!" as an accusation? [The man can't say a word without contradiction]

Oh - now suddenly it's only one Mega-Phonie? And it (me) was "screaming". Right.

The WRH member comments are here, one of which revealingly says

We can all agree there was an OBVIOUS difference between the postings of Michael Rivero and Curt. Throughout, it appeared that Michael was trying to state that "wrong is wrong" no matter who the perpetrators are (or were), whether they were Nazis, Zionists, Communists, Fascists, the American Government, etc. (This is THE consistent philosophy as demonstrated by the types of articles posted at WRH.)
Hmmmm, no. This is the basic fraud of WRH. It has a very narrow perspective - a peculiarly warped one at that - Hitlerite Jewish World Conspiracy, in a pathological fashion.

WRH does not represent various viewpoints, it has a very strict agenda which can be delineated through study. What is left out, and what gets in. (In my opinion, Rivero is fascist.....and increasingly he appears extreme Islamist. One can't put a rizzla-paper between Rivero and Bin Laden or HAMAS - though Bin Laden seems more prepared to take responsibility than Rivero will allow.)

and again

He was using me as target practice? Really? I thought I'd shown he was morally bankrupt, a liar and a fraud. Dangerous too.

and again

My "endless smears" of Rivero were actually serious accusations he couldn't refute, and which I would never have made without being certain of them. I don't call people liars in print without certainty - it'd be stupid to do so.

WRH comments page is here.

and again

My version runs more like:

Rivero LIES

I say he's a liar.


I say he's a liar.


Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Copyrighted Angels

I claim the universal copyright for this article in the name of Archangel Michael. WE OFFER ARCHANGEL MICHAEL’S MESSAGES ON OUR WEBSITE AS A GIFT

Holy Halfway.wank


Monday, 14 June 2010

Hitchens 2004 - Interview with Johann Hari

Johann Hari
In enemy territory? An interview with Christopher Hitchens

Posted by Johann Hari on 23 September 2004

To many of Christopher Hitchens' old friends, he died on September 11th 2001. Tariq Ali considered himself a comrade of Christopher Hitchens for over thirty years. Now he speaks about him with bewilderment. "On 11th September 2001, a small group of terrorists crashed the planes they had hijacked into the Twin Towers of New York. Among the casualties, although unreported that week, was a middle-aged Nation columnist called Christopher Hitchens. He was never seen again," Ali writes. "The vile replica currently on offer is a double."

This encapsulates how many of Hitchens' old allies - a roll-call of the left's most distinguished intellectuals, from Noam Chomsky to Alexander Cockburn to (until his premature death last year) Edward Said - view his transformation. On September 10th, he was campaigning for Henry Kissinger to be arraigned before a war crimes tribunal in the Hague for his massive and systematic crimes against humanity in the 1960s and 1970s. He was preparing to testify in the Vatican - as a literal Devil's Advocate - against the canonisation of Mother Theresa, who he had exposed as a sadistic Christian fundamentalist, an apologist for some of the world's ugliest dictatorships, and a knowing beneficiary of corporate fraud. Hitchens was sailing along the slow, certain route from being the Left's belligerent bad boy to being one of its most revered old men.

And then a hijacked plane flew into the Pentagon - a building which stands just ten minutes' from Hitchens' home. The island of Manhattan became engulfed in smoke. Within a year, Hitchens was damning his former comrades as "soft on Islamic fascism", giving speeches at the Bush White House, and describing himself publicly as "a recovering ex-Trotskyite." What happened?

[They bloody are "soft on Islamic fascism"!!!!!]

When I arrive, he is reclining in his usual cloud of Rothmans' smoke and sipping a whisky. "You're late," he says sternly. I begin to flap, and he laughs. "It's fine," he says and I give him a big hug. On the morning of September 11th, once I had checked everybody I knew in New York was safe, I thought of Hitch who had become a friend since he encouraged my early journalistic efforts. He had been campaigning against Islamic fundamentalism for decades. I knew this assault this would blast him into new political waters - and I buckled a mental seatbelt for the bumpy ride ahead.

I decide to open with the most basic of questions. Where would he place himself on the political spectrum today? "I don't have a political allegiance now, and I doubt I ever will have again. I can no longer describe myself as a socialist. I miss it like a lost limb." He takes a sip from his drink. "But I don't regret anything. I'm still fighting for Kissinger to be brought to justice. The socialist movement enabled universal suffrage, the imposition of limits upon exploitation, and the independence of colonial and subject populations. Its achievements were real, and I'm glad I was part of it. Where it succeeded, one can be proud of it. Where it failed - as in the attempt to stop the First World War and later to arrest the growth of fascism - one can honourably regret its failure."

Does anyone leave socialism? Could I? Over things like this?

He realised he was not a socialist any longer around three years ago. "Often young people ask me for political advice, and when you are talking to the young, you mustn't bullshit. It's one thing when you are sitting with old comrades to talk about reviving the left, but you can't say that to somebody who is just starting out. And what could I say to these people? I had to ask myself - is there an international socialist movement worth the name? No. No, there is not. Okay - will it revive? No, it won't. Okay then - but is there at least a critique of capitalism that has a potential for replacing it? Not that I can identify."

I disagree.

"If the answer to all these questions is no, then I have no right to go around calling myself a socialist. It's more like an affectation." But Hitch - there are still hundreds of causes on the left, even if the socialist tag is outdated. You used to write about acid rain, the crimes of the IMF and World Bank, the death penalty... It's hard to imagine you writing about them now. He explains that he is still vehemently against the death penalty and "I haven't forgotten the 152 people George Bush executed in Texas." But the other issues? He seems to wave them aside as "anti-globalisation" causes - a movement he views with contempt.

As he should? Marx embraced free trade. What in hell are you going to do about it?

He explains that he believes the moment the left's bankruptcy became clear was on 9/11. "The United States was attacked by theocratic fascists who represents all the most reactionary elements on earth. They stand for liquidating everything the left has fought for: women's rights, democracy?

One might have hoped for a longer list?

And how did much of the left respond? By affecting a kind of neutrality between America and the theocratic fascists."

True! mea culpa?

He cites the cover of one of Tariq Ali's books as the perfect example. It shows Bush and Bin Laden morphed into one on its cover. "It's explicitly saying they are equally bad. However bad the American Empire has been, it is not as bad as this. It is not the Taliban, and anybody - any movement - that cannot see the difference has lost all moral bearings."

He's right, I'm sure - but the War on Terror made that a near impossible argument to make. Disastrous.

Hitchens - who has just returned from Afghanistan - says, "The world these [al-Quadea and Taliban] fascists want to create is one of constant submission and servility. The individual only has value to them if they enter into a life of constant reaffirmation and prayer. It is pure totalitarianism, and one of the ugliest totalitarianisms we've seen. It's the irrational combined with the idea of a completely closed society. To stand equidistant between that and a war to remove it is?" He shakes his head. I have never seen Hitch grasping for words before.

It's a good question - and one people have been seeking to avoid (including myself). Instead the left has been inclined towards conspiracism.

Some people on the left tried to understand the origins of al-Quadea as really being about inequalities in wealth, or Israel's brutality towards the Palestinians, or other legitimate grievances. "Look: inequalities in wealth had nothing to do with Beslan or Bali or Madrid," Hitchens says. "The case for redistributing wealth is either good or it isn't - I think it is - but it's a different argument. If you care about wealth distribution, please understand, the Taliban and the al Quaeda murderers have less to say on this than even the most cold-hearted person on Wall Street. These jihadists actually prefer people to live in utter, dire poverty because they say it is purifying. Nor is it anti-imperialist: they explictly want to recreate the lost Caliphate, which was an Empire itself."

An understanding that has been missing.

He continues, "I just reject the whole mentality that says, we need to consider this phenomenon in light of current grievances. It's an insult to the people who care about the real grievances of the Palestinians and the Chechens and all the others. It's not just the wrong interpretation of those causes; it's their negation." And this goes for the grievances of the Palestinians, who he has dedicated a great deal of energy to documenting and supporting. "Does anybody really think that if every Jew was driven from Palestine, these guys would go back to their caves? Nobody is blowing themselves up for a two-state solution. They openly say, ?We want a Jew-free Palestine, and a Christian-free Palestine.' And that would very quickly become, 'Don't be a Shia Muslim around here, baby.'" He supports a two-state solution - but he doesn't think it will solve the jihadist problem at all.

Now there's a problem! People seem unwilling to even begin to understand this as being a problem. the reason for ME issues is always given as Israeli intransigence - but what if it's something else?

Can he ever see a defeat for this kind of Islamofascism? "This kind of theocratic fascism will never die because we belong to a very poorly-evolved mammarian species. I'm a complete materialist in that sense. We're stuck with being the product of a very sluggish evolution. Our pre-frontal lobes are too small and our adrenaline glands are too big. Our fear of the dark and of death is very intense, and people will always be able to profit from that. But nor can I see this kind of fascism winning. They couldn't even run Afghanistan. Our victory is assured - so we can afford to be very scrupulous in our methods."

I think that's a very crude materialism - about as crude as it gets, surely? I think it's seriously lacking.....something.

But can he see a time when this kind of jihadist fever will be as marginalised as, say, Nazism is now, confined to a few reactionary eccentrics? "Not without what that took - which is an absolutely convincing defeat and discrediting. Something unarguable. I wouldn't exclude any measure either. There's nothing I wouldn't do to stop this form of fascism."

He is appalled that some people on the left are prepared to do almost nothing to defeat Islamofascism.

I loathe that abdication. I notice it, increasingly.

"When I see some people who claim to be on the left abusing that tradition, making excuses for the most reactionary force in the world, I do feel pain that a great tradition is being defamed. So in that sense I still consider myself to be on the left." A few months ago, when Bush went to Ireland for the G8 meeting, Hitchens was on a TV debate with the leader of a small socialist party in the Irish dail. "He said these Islamic fascists are doing this because they have deep-seated grievances. And I said, 'Ah yes, they have many grievances. They are aggrieved when they see unveiled woman. And they are aggrieved that we tolerate homosexuals and Jews and free speech and the reading of literature.'"

I think that needs recognising. This is what the flotilla stuff hopes to completely obviate. Just squash it all flat.

"And this man - who had presumably never met a jihadist in his life - said, 'No, it's about their economic grievances.' Well, of course, because the Taliban provided great healthcare and redistribution of wealth, didn't they? After the debate was over, I said, 'If James Connolly [the Irish socialist leader of the Easter Risings] could hear you defending these theocratic fascist barbarians, you would know you had been in a fight. Do you know what you are saying? Do you know who you are pissing on?"

well, quite......

Many of us can agree passionately with all that - but it is a huge leap to actually supporting Bush. George Orwell - one of Hitchens' intellectual icons - managed to oppose fascism and Stalinism from the left without ever offering a word of support for Winston Churchill. Can't Hitch agitate for a fight against Islamofascism without backing this awful President?

A not impossible position? It's the one I thought I was occupying all along, although I failed to recognise the extent of fascism within Islam.

He explains by talking about the origins of his relationship with the neconservatives in Washington. "I first became interested in the neocons during the war in Bosnia-Herzgovinia. That war in the early 1990s changed a lot for me. I never thought I would see, in Europe, a full-dress reprise of internment camps, the mass murder of civilians, the reinstiutution of torture and rape as acts of policy. And I didn't expect so many of my comrades to be indifferent - or even take the side of the fascists."

Which side were the fascists? I couldn't tell.

"It was a time when many people on the left were saying 'Don't intervene, we'll only make things worse' or, 'Don't intervene, it might destabilise the region.'", he continues. "And I thought - destabilisation of fascist regimes is a good thing. Why should the left care about the stability of undemocratic regimes? Wasn't it a good thing to destabilise the regime of General Franco?"

I was very strongly in favour of intervention at the time, much to the consternation of my pacifist friend. In retrospect, I've generally held that he had the better view, though my ignorance takes first place.

"It was a time when the left was mostly taking the conservative, status quo position - leave the Balkans alone, leave Milosevic alone, do nothing. And that kind of conservatism can easily mutate into actual support for the aggressors. Weimar-style conservatism can easily mutate into National Socialism," he elaborates. "So you had people like Noam Chomsky's co-author Ed Herman go from saying 'Do nothing in the Balkans', to actually supporting[ital] Milosevic, the most reactionary force in the region."

I've seen reasons to support Milosevic.

"That's when I began to first find myself on the same side as the neocons. I was signing petitions in favour of action in Bosnia, and I would look down the list of names and I kept finding, there's Richard Perle. There's Paul Wolfowitz. That seemed interesting to me. These people were saying that we had to act." He continues, "Before, I had avoided them like the plague, especially because of what they said about General Sharon and about Nicaragua. But nobody could say they were interested in oil in the Balkans, or in strategic needs, and the people who tried to say that - like Chomsky - looked ridiculous. So now I was interested."

I appreciate that view. Half reluctantly, and half enthusiastically I have to admit I am drawn like that. Why not?

There are two strands of conservatism on the US right that Hitch has always opposed. The first was the Barry Goldwater-Pat Buchanan isolationist right. They argued for "America First" - disengagement from the world, and the abandonment of Europe to fascism. The second was the Henry Kissinger right, which argued for the installation of pro-American, pro-business regimes, even if it meant liquidating democracies (as in Chile or Iran) and supporting and equipping practitioners of genocide.

Yeah, same.

He believes neoconservatism is a distinctively new strain of thought, preached by ex-leftists, who believed in using US power to spread democracy. "It's explicitly anti-Kissingerian. Kissinger hates this stuff. He opposed intervening in the Balkans. Kissinger Associates were dead against [the war in] Iraq. He can't understand the idea of backing democracy - it's totally alien to him."

Now here it gets confusing! I believe the neo-cons cheaply threw away what little political capital they had. They managed this on top of the sympathy 911 garnered, helping bring about a complete reversal in moral terms.

"So that interest in the neocons re-emerged after September 11th. They were saying - we can't carry on with the approach to the Middle East we have had for the past fifty years. We cannot go on with this proxy rule racket, where we back tyranny in the region for the sake of stability. So we have to take the risk of uncorking it and hoping the more progressive side wins." He has replaced a belief in Marxist revolution with a belief in spreading the American revolution. Thomas Jefferson has displaced Karl Marx.

Is it?

But can we trust the Bush administration - filled with people like Dick Cheney, who didn't even support the release of Nelson Mandela - to support democracy and the spread of American values now?

Fair point. lol

He offers an anecdote in response. There is a new liberal-left heroine in the States called Azar Nafisi. Her book 'Reading Lolita in Tehran' documents an underground feminist resistance movement to the Iranian Mullahs that concentrated on reading great - and banned - works of Western literature. "And who is this book by an icon of the Iranian resistance dedicated to? [US Deputy Secretary of Defence] Paul Wolfowitz, the bogeyman of the left, and the intellectual force behind [the recent war in] Iraq."

I'm unconvinced. you?

With the fine eye for ideological division that comes from a life on the Trotskyite left, Hitch diagnoses the intellectual divisions within the Bush administration. He does not ally himself with the likes of Cheney; he backs the small sliver of pure neocon thought he associates with Wolfowitz. "The thing that would most surprise people about Wolfowitz if they met him is that he's a real bleeding heart. He's from a Polish-Jewish immigrant family. You know the drill - Kennedy Democrats, some of the family got out of Poland in time and some didn't make it, civil rights marchers? He impressed me when he was speaking at a pro-Israel rally in Washington a few years ago and he made a point of talking about Palestinian suffering. He didn't have to do it - at all - and he was booed. He knew he would be booed, and he got it. I've taken time to find out what he thinks about these issues, and it's always interesting."

He gives an account of how the neocon philosophy affected the course of the Iraq war. "The CIA - which is certainly not neoconservative - wanted to keep the Iraqi army together because you never know when you might need a large local army. That's how the US used to govern. It's a Kissinger way of thinking. But Wolfowitz and others wanted to disband the Iraqi army, because they didn't want anybody to even suspect that they wanted to restore military rule." He thinks that if this philosophy can become dominant within the Republican Party, it can turn US power into a revolutionary force.

Not decisions I feel capable of making.

I feel simultaneously roused by Hitch's arguments and strangely disconcerted. Why did Hitch so enthusiastically back the administration's bogus WMD arguments - arguments he still stands by? I think of the Bush administration's denial of global warming, the hideous 'structural adjustment' programmes it rams down the throats of the world's poor (including Iraq's), its description of Ariel Sharon as "a man of peace"? Why intellectually compromise on all these issues and back Bush?

Where's the compromise?

Bosnia was not the only precedent for Hitch's reaction to 9/11. He was disgusted by the West's slothful, grudging reaction to the fatwa against his friend Salman Rushdie. Back in 1989, he was writing about the "absurdity" of "seeing Islamic fundamentalism as an anti-imperial movement." He was similarly appalled by the American left's indulgence of Bill Clinton's crimes, including the execution of a mentally disabled black man and the bombing of a pharmaceutical factory in Sudan that led to the deaths of more than 10,000 innocent Sudanese people. This brought him into close contact with the Clinton-hating right - and made him view their opponents with disgust.


And so the separation of Hitch and the organised left occurred. Is it permanent? Nobody was a better fighter for left-wing causes than Hitch. Nobody makes the left-wing case against Islamofascism and Ba'athism better than him today. Yet he undermines these vital arguments by backing Bush and indulging in wishful thinking about the Republicans.

Liberalism or fascism? :D

As I luxuriate in the warm bath of his charisma, I want to almost physically drag him all the way back to us. He might be dead to the likes of Tariq Ali but there is still a large constituency of people on the left who understand how abhorrent Islamic fundamentalism is. Why leave us behind? I stammer that I can't imagine him ever settling down on the American right. He pauses, and I desperately hope that he will agree with me. "Not the Buchanan-Reagan right, no," he says. There is a pause. I expect him to continue, but he doesn't.


Back in the mid-1980s, Hitch lambasted a small US magazine called the Partsian Review for its "decline into neoconservatism". I don't think Hitch is lost to the left quite yet. He will never stop campaigning for the serial murderer Henry Kissinger to be brought to justice, and his hatred of Islamic fundamentalism is based on good left-wing principles. But it does feel at the end of our three-hour lunch like I have been watching him slump into neoconservatism. Come home, Hitch - we need you.

I used to think he ust have gone mad, but now.........and for a while, he's made more sense.

For shame, even Castro's at it

Castro: Swastika has become Israel's banner

Former Cuban president slams Israeli raid on Gaza-bound flotilla, says Israel 'would not hesitate to send 1.5 million Palestinians to crematoriums'

Published: 06.11.10, 21:36 / Israel News

Former Cuban President Fidel Castro slammed Israel on Friday and compared its policies to those of Nazi Germany. He said Israel seems to have taken the swastika as its banner, and that it would "not hesitate" to send the 1.5 million Palestinians living in Gaza to "crematoriums".

The former communist leader published an article in local press in which he said, "The State of Israel's hatred towards the Palestinians is such that it would not hesitate to send 1.5 million men, women and children to the crematoriums in which millions of Jews of all ages were killed."

Israeli has recently come under harsh criticism from many countries around the world over its takeover of the Gaza-bound Marmara ship, in which nine activists were killed.

Castro added in his article that, "The swastika would seem to be the flag of Israel today." He emphasized that his words were not "born of hatred", and noted that his country assisted persecuted Jews during the Second World War.


The Israelis have "only" had 60 years to do it? If they had wanted to accomplish it they surely could have done it by now. They haven't. The Final Solution ran fewer than 5 years. Surely this difference isn't all down to fabled German efficiency? Ridiculous. Shame on Fidel.

Saturday, 12 June 2010

WRH -- excusing rocket attacks on (Israeli) civilians

Usually hit empty fields? Usually?

That the rockets in HAMAS' possession are inaccurate is not a reason to excuse them. In fact it makes them worse, it means they're indiscriminate. Indiscriminate rocket attacks on civilians......excused. The Goldstone report called such attacks "war crimes". WRH calls them fireworks......

WRH - clever anti-Israel propaganda advertises:
Edward Peck: Israel "smearing" the opposition

Here's the thing. I just got off a radio interview. One of the things that distresses me is the extent to which Israel has been successful in, for example, getting Americans to ask questions as to why the passengers on that big Turkish ship attacked the Israeli soldiers.
My emphasis. So, simply asking questions means one has fallen for Israeli manipulations - one has fallen under their spell and become a mouthpiece for Israel. Israel makes people ask questions. How dreadful. What pernicious corruption.

Don't ask questions - don't expose yourself as a dupe for Israel! Mad.

Lot's being said at the moment on the order of events around the Mavi Marmara situation. At least this article admits "the passengers on that big Turkish ship attacked the Israeli soldiers" - most everywhere omits this definite fact and claim it was the other way around.

There are so many suggestions that passengers were killed before the Israelis boarded and were attacked. There is no direct evidence for this at the moment, but people believe it. That's what I find interesting - that it's an objective fact we don't know what happened -- and yet people speak as if they already know. And how do their assumptions go? Well, there's an obvious keen-ness to reach conclusions which condemn Israel. Every detail reflects the same urge....all unknowns are simply assumed and - it seems to me - they unfailingly condemn Israel. That's my impression of the general reaction.

Moreover, raise a voice against it, and expect to get shouted down. Viciously too. A frightful climate. yuck.